Skip Navigation

Sign In or Register


SharePrint Civil Works Administration


A New Deal agency established in the late fall of 1933, the Civil Works Administration sought to provide emergency work relief for the many still unemployed as the country faced another winter during the Great Depression. Paying higher wages than the meager subsistence rates previously prevailing in local work relief, the CWA quickly put some 80,000 West Virginians to work on projects ranging from road work and the building of 35,400 fly-proof sanitary privies to making mattresses. Although the subject of intense political conflict, the agency provided much-needed relief to West Virginians before President Franklin D. Roosevelt, alarmed at the cost, ordered it to cease operations in the spring of 1934.

This Article was written by Jerry Bruce Thomas

Last Revised on November 03, 2023

Related Articles


Thomas, Jerry Bruce. An Appalachian New Deal: West Virginia in the Great Depression. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1998.

Beehler, William N. Relief, Work and Rehabilitation. West Virginia Relief Administration. Charleston: Matthews Printing & Litho. Co., 1934.

Cite This Article

Thomas, Jerry Bruce "Civil Works Administration." e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 03 November 2023. Web. 29 May 2024.


There aren't any comments for this article yet.

West Virginia Humanities Council | 1310 Kanawha Blvd E | Charleston, WV 25301 Ph. 304-346-8500 | © 2024 All Rights Reserved

About e-WV | Our Sponsors | Help & Support | Contact Us The essential guide to the Mountain State can be yours today! Click here to order.