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A dam being built, thanks to the Tennessee Valley Authority, in 1942
A dam being built, thanks to the Tennessee Valley Authority, in 1942

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Tennessee Valley Authority
One of the most famous and successful projects begun by the federal government during the Great Depression was the Tennessee Valley Authority, or TVA. Do you know what it was and why it was started?

During the Great Depression of the 1930s, President Franklin D. Roosevelt set up many new projects and agencies to help the hardest hit areas of the United States. One such agency was the Tennessee Valley Authority, which was created in 1933. The Tennessee River valley was continually dealing with floods, deforestation, and eroded land. The TVA aimed to help reduce these problems by teaching better farming methods, replanting trees, and building dams. This agency was also important because it generated and sold surplus electricity, created jobs, and conserved water power. The TVA was a great success almost from the beginning and helped ease some of the economic hardship not only in the state of Tennessee but also in parts of Kentucky, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia.

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