30 Wonderful Vintage Photos Showing What American Women Wore in the 1930s

The 1930s (pronounced “nineteen-thirties” and commonly abbreviated as “the 30s”) was a decade that began on January 1, 1930, and ended on December 31, 1939.

The decade was defined by a global economic and political crisis that culminated in the Second World War. It saw the collapse of the international financial system, beginning with the Wall Street Crash of 1929, the largest stock market crash in American history. The subsequent economic downfall, called the Great Depression, had traumatic social effects worldwide, leading to widespread poverty and unemployment, especially in the economic superpower of the United States and in Germany, which was already struggling with the payment of reparations for the First World War. The Dust Bowl in the United States (which led to the nickname the “Dirty Thirties”) further emphasised the scarcity of wealth. U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, elected in 1933, introduced a program of broad-scale social reforms and stimulus plans called the New Deal in response to the crisis.

In the wake of the Depression, the decade also saw the rapid retreat of liberal democracy as authoritarian regimes emerged in countries across Europe and South America, including Italy, Spain, and in particular Nazi Germany. With the rise of Adolf Hitler, Germany undertook a series of annexations and aggressions against neighboring territories in Central Europe, and imposed a series of laws which discriminated against Jews and other ethnic minorities. Weaker states such as Ethiopia, China, and Poland were invaded by expansionist world powers, with the last of these attacks leading to the outbreak of World War II on September 1, 1939, despite calls from the League of Nations for worldwide peace. World War II helped end the Great Depression when governments spent money for the war effort. The 1930s also saw many important developments in science and a proliferation of new technologies, especially in the fields of intercontinental aviation, radio, and film. (Wikipedia)

What did American women wear in the 1930s? Just check out these found snaps to see.

Five teen girls on a Ford Automobile, Oregon, 1931
Four women in swimsuits, Rockaway Beach, Oregon, 1930
Girls basketball team in Scotts Mills, Oregon, 1936
Mature woman in a flower print house dress, rolled stockings, posing in a dirt yard next to her house, Sandusky, Ohio, 1936
Mature woman on a playground swing. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Older woman on a swing. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Pretty girl and roadster automobile, Corte Madera, California, 1932
Pretty girl on Durant Sixty Automobile, California, 1931
Sexy young woman in a swimsuit, Woodside Country Club, California, 1933
Teen girl on the running board of a car. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Three pretty teen girls on a bicycle, Oregon, 1931
Two girls by a pond or lake, barefoot, probably Miami, Florida, circa 1939
Two hitchhiking girls, Yosemite National Park, California, 1933
Two mature women seated in front of a stack of wood, Oregon, 1937
Two teen girls in swimsuits on the Butte Creek in Oregon, Scotts Mills covered bridge in the background, circa 1931
Two teen girls on the hood of an automobile in a field, Oregon, 1930
Two women and a man sitting on front steps of a home, Wisconsin, circa 1933
Two women hugging, Oregon, 1931
Two women on a farm holding their puppy dogs, Pennsylvania, circa 1933
Two women stopping for food and drink. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Two young women in fur coats by a cabin and picnic table at Blue Hole, Castalia, Ohio, 1931
Woman in an automobile, Wisconsin, circa 1933
Woman sitting in an automobile. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Woman with a cat. Picture from a family trip about 1933 to Chicago, Ohio, Pennsylvania
Woman with car in winter, Wisconsin, circa 1933
Women posing outdoors, Oregon, circa 1931
Young woman and an old automobile, Oregon, circa 1930
Young woman in swimsuit on the beach, Santa Monica, California, 1933
Young woman sitting on the running board of an automobile, Wisconsin, circa 1933
Young woman standing by her car, Ohio, 1931

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