“Phantom of Fear”

The Banking Panic of 1933


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SKU: 9780786465101 Categories: , , , ,

About the Book

In March 1933, in one of his first acts as president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared a bank holiday throughout the United States. Considered by many to be a bold step to curb the mounting bank crisis, the decree closed banks in all 48 states and overseas territories, putting money out of reach of citizens, businesses and all levels of government. This narrative history recounts and explains the economic, financial and political backgrounds of the banking panic, arguing that the holiday was not only unnecessary but actually damaging to the economy. The holiday did, however, provide Roosevelt with the momentum to push through a series of historic reforms that remade the federal government. This revisionist work not only reveals the circumstances around the panic but debunks numerous myths that have clung to it ever since.

About the Author(s)

Robert Lynn Fuller has taught history at colleges and universities in Virginia, Maryland, and South Carolina. He lives in Richmond, Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Robert Lynn Fuller
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 287
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6510-1
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8685-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments viii
Introduction 1
One—Boom, Crash, and Slump 7
Two—President Hoover Hesitates 32
Three—Political Clouds Darken 53
Four—Indecision in 1932 73
Five—1933 94
Six—Panic in Detroit 114
Seven—The Spreading Panic 137
Eight—The Crisis in the White House 162
Nine—President Roosevelt Takes the Helm 179
Ten—Recovery and Reform 203
Epilogue: The Banks and the Depression After the Holiday 221
Conclusion 231
Chapter Notes 239
Bibliography 266
Index 273

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Recommended”—Choice
  • “Fuller seeks to present a wider account of the way the public actually interacted with the banks and the banks own response to the Depression”—Reference & Research Book News