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Entering West Virginia a week ago, I have been for eight days in Monongalia, Preston and Harrison Counties, a region which constitutes the heart of the Upper Monongahela Valley and contains, according to the Bureau of Mines, the richest soft coal region in the world and also, according to Lowell Thomas, the "foulest cesspool of human misery this side of hell--Scott's Run."  >>more...>>

Title:     Report, Clarksburg, West Virginia, November 25, 1934
Author:    Francis, Henry W.
Source:     Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, Hopkins Papers, Box 66
Date:     November 25, 1934

Publisher:     Hopkins Papers, FDRL
Type:     Letter

Listed Under:
Coal Industry
Relief
West Virginia

Notes:     In the Fall of 1933, Federal Emergency Relief Adminstration director Harry Hopkins sent sixteen reporters to investigate social and economic conditions around the country. "I don't want statistics from you," the journalist Lorena Hickok remembers him saying. " I don't want the social-worker angle. I just want your own reactions, as an ordinary citizen." (Bauman and Coode, p. 1) This is one such report.

For a detailed account of the FERA Reports, see In the Eye of the Great Depression : New Deal Reporters and the Agony of the American People, by John F. Bauman and Thomas H. Coode. (DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 1988).