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Du Pont Dynasty: Behind the Nylon Curtain by Mark Crispin Miller, Gerard Colby Zilg

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Ten

DECADE OF DESPAIR

1. THE FRUIT OF DROUGHT

The crash of 1929 released a virtual Pandora’s box of stored-up economic ills. And in their wake, like a terrible plague spreading across the land, into every factory and every home, came the Great Depression.

The initial reaction from Wilmington and Washington was one of mixed alarm and disbelief. President Hoover, holding that one does not encourage a sick man to recover by reminding him of his illness, cheerily attempted to allay the population’s mounting fears with bedside manner and false obituaries over the dead body of the Depression.

“I don’t see how such a shrinkage in [stock] value,” wrote an irritated Alfred du Pont, “totalling, I presume, several billions of dollars, can take place, involving ...

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