In all of DECOR’s longstanding history, the 1930s was one of the most challenging decades. By March 1930, more than 3.2 million people were unemployed, up from 1.5 million before the “crash” of October 1929. President Hoover remained optimistic, however, stating “all the evidences indicate that the worst effects of the crash upon unemployment will have passed during the next 60 days.”
With the economy in the pits, Raleigh maintained the magazine at constant size even with declining advertising. He stressed that retailers continue to advertise locally and through the magazine. “Business acceleration depends on activity, on putting more money into circulation. Pay your bills so others can pay theirs,” he said.
The May 1930 issue commemorated the 50th anniversary of the magazine. The issue featured articles examining the history of the industry. The former publisher Ford wrote in his regular contributing column: “This magazine, beautiful from a typographical point of view and artistic in its general effect, with practical information and useful suggestions and hints, must be an indispensable joy to every manufacturer and dealer in the line of goods it represents.”
Even with the celebration, times were certainly tight for the industry. As President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal program slowly helped the economy, he urged business people in every sector to get motivated.
One Picture & Trade Magazine contributor wrote, “It is not surprising that volume and real earnings in the picture business are what they are today, frequently characterized by those in it as ‘lousy,’ but it is surprising that the popular demand for good pictures is so deeply fixed that it persists despite the outworn methods by which they are marketed.”
Check out the latest post from the Monthly Decade Review! Click here to read all about DECOR in the 1930s and to view excerpts from the issues in that decade.