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Personal Stories

Personal histories are a vital part of the New Deal legacy. The Living New Deal wants to keep them alive and make them available to everyone.

Please share your family’s story with us. If you have a story of a parent, grandparent or other relative who participated in the New Deal or benefitted from the New Deal in any way, please send us a brief account and any photographs you may have.

Check out Finding New Deal Ancestors for tips on how to perform ancestry research.

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  • Viviana Dominguez
    • January 28, 2016
    I am an art conservator specialize in New Deal murals . I restored 6 murals so far between Ellicot Cityin Maryland (old post-office), Fullerton (old city hall) in California, Arizona Southern(at ASU) and Key West in Florida. I enjoyed each project for various reasons but I think the most interesting ...
  • Lena G. Reynolds
    • May 7, 2014
    My family is from Chicago, but we've been fairly intertwined with the Quad Cities area, on the border of Illinois and Iowa (Moline, Rock Island, Bettendorf, and Davenport). One of our favorite places to visit is Blackhawk State Park in Rock Island. It was the site of a fraudulent Native ...
  • Richard H. Wedekindt
    • April 4, 2014
    My wife's great uncle was an artist under the WPA/FAP.  Edward Riegel worked on two large murals and did around 100 portraits of famous people in history.  Check him out on Edward J. Riegel artist burchfield=penney gallery, Buffalo, NY.  I am surprised that your list does not have Buffalo.  The ...
  • Mary Morin, August ME 04330
    • April 4, 2014
    Tribute to my Husband, Abel Joseph Duplessis: Maine Camp: Bridgton My husband, Abel Duplessis, of Van Buren, Maine was a part of Camp #`1124 in Bridgton Maine from 1936 to 1941. His job was that of first cook while there. The time that he was in the CCC was a valuable time ...
  • The Untold Story of Key New Dealer, Frank Walker
    • October 14, 2013
    I write to tell you about the life and work of my dear late grandfather, Frank Comerford Walker. He was a scarlet pimpernel who worked for positive change and ascended to a position where he was fortunate enough to help craft good government. I am working toward writing a book ...
  • Bay Bridge Workers - Family Stories
    • September 7, 2013
    Family members of workers on the original San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge recount their stories in this video from the Regional Oral History Office of the Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley. One striking bit is Jack Lamborn explaining how public works projects changed his father's political viewpoints (at 3:53 in the video). The ...
  • Edward Radice, English Scholar Present at the Dawn of the New Deal
    • August 24, 2013
    My daughter Dr. Martha Radice (a social anthropologist at Dalhousie University in Canada) heard about your project, the Living New Deal, and we thought that you might be interested in adding my father's (her grandfather's) works to your bibliography. Dr Edward Albert Radice spent two years (1933-35) at Columbia University doing ...
  • Dan Parks
    • August 9, 2013
    My grandfather, forced to quit school after the 8th grade to work on the family farm, fudged his age to join the CCC at 17. His CCC crew worked the Wisconsin northwoods and improved the beautiful Camp Copper Falls State Park. He sent $25 a month, almost half his pay, ...
  • Grover Jones
    • August 9, 2013
    I lived in Lamar Colorado until WWII, so I feel that these New Deal projects are part of my history.  I copied the following information from the internet. WILLOW CREEK PARK Memorial Drive, Parkview Ave. and Willow Valley Rd., Lamar National Register 8/10/2007, 5PW.56 The park is associated with several Great Depression era ...
  • Edie Hamlin & Maynard Dixon Murals
    • August 9, 2013
    Maynard Dixon’s Muse Maynard Dixon and Edith Hamlin were enamored all their life with the Plains Indians, their legends and colorfulness, and everything about them. Unlike his former wife, Dorothea Lange, the famous Depression-era photographer, Edie seemed comfortable in Maynard’s shadow. He was one of the most famous painters of the ...
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Living New Deal. Still Working for America.

And the Winners are . . .

FDR delivering one of his fireside chats.

The 2023 New Deal Book Award

The winning titles and authors have been announced. The 2023 Award, with a prize of $1,000, will be presented at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library June 22, 2024.