Arts & Culture
10:57 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Exhibit Displays Local Handicrafts Made During The Great Depression

From the Handmade for Hard Times: The Milwaukee Handicraft Project exhibit.
From the Handmade for Hard Times: The Milwaukee Handicraft Project exhibit.
Credit Museum of Wisconsin Art

Handicrafts made during the Great Depression are currently on display at the Museum of Wisconsin Art.

The Great Depression was among America’s darkest hours. The 1930s were a time of desperate economic circumstances for people from all walks of life. In Milwaukee, more than 40 percent of wage earners lost their jobs between 1929 and 1933.

But it was also during that time that the federal government found some remarkable ways to put people to work – one of them right here in southeastern Wisconsin.

The Milwaukee Handicraft Project employed thousands of women who made wooden and cloth toys, furniture, books and other items.

That project is seeing new life in an exhibit at the Museum of Wisconsin Art in West Bend. Handmade for Hard Times: The Milwaukee Handicraft Project exhibit runs through June 15th.

This interview first aired in early April of 2014.

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