Your Guide to Using WPA Records in Your Genealogical Research

WPA records were created between 1935 and 1943, when the federal government created the Works Projects Administration to provide work for thousands of unemployed Americans who were struggling to survive the depression of the 1930's. There were hundreds of WPA programs that employed thousands of people. Records of this program are at the National Archives and some state archives. Not all are of genealogical value.

Historical Records Survey (HRS)

Some of the projects resulted in interviews, surveys or guides that are useful to genealogists. Many of the historical records surveys listed extant records in courthouses and other repositories and often provided a description of the records These records often begin with the title "Inventory of the County Archives... "There were also inventories of church records. A project to interview former slaves created priceless records that document the lives of people who were born into slavery.

more links

* Cyndi's List: The Great Depression: WPA



This page last updated May 5, 2015

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