Glossary of Terms - Rural Relief - WPA - 1938

Glossary Title Page, Farmers on Relief and Rehabilitation

Glossary Title Page, Farmers on Relief and Rehabilitation, Research Monograph VIII, Works Progress Administration, Division of Social Research, 1937. GGA Image ID # 15397f188c

The definitions given herewith are those used in the Survey of Current Changes in the Rural Relief Population.

Accessions. —New or reopened relief cases as of a given period.

Acres Operated. —Total acres in farm, regardless of whether under cultivation or not. May be owned, rented, part owned, or part rented.

Aged. —Persons 65 years of age and over.

Assets. (See Loss or Depletion of Assets.)

Broken Family. —Mother and children or father and children.

Capital Goods (as type of rehabilitation advance).—The purchase, rental, construction, or repairs of land, buildings, home equipment, livestock, work animals, feed, seed, fertilizer, equipment, farm tools, or machinery, and any other capital outlays required to carry out the rural rehabilitation program (F. E. R. A. Form RD-22a).

Carry-Over. —Cases receiving relief in a given month that were brought forward from an earlier month.

Case. (See Relief Case.)

Cash Crop Acres. —Crop acres cultivated for the purpose of sell- ing more than 50 percent of the produce grown on them.

Children. —Persons under 16 years of age.

Client. (See Rehabilitation Client.)

Closed Relief Case. —A case to which an agency has ceased giving relief from F. E. R. A. funds, whether or not the household continues to receive aid from some other Government agency. Thus a household transferred from general relief to the Resettlement Ad- ministration after July 1, 1935, is a closed relief case; a household in which a worker formerly on E. R. A. work relief was transferred to the Federal Works Program after July 1, 1935, is a closed relief case, provided the household no longer receives general relief.

Crop Acres. —Acres actually cultivated by a farmer during one crop season. The number of crop acres reported for farmers in this survey was the number operated during the year of the survey or the most recent year in which the farmer engaged in farming.

Cropper. (See Farm Cropper.)

Current Employment. —The current employment of a worker whose household was on relief continuously from February through June was the non-relief employment lasting 1 week or more during February.

The current employment of a worker whose household came on relief from March through June was any non-relief employment during the week in which the first relief order was received.

Current Occupation. —The occupation engaged in by a person currently employed. Depletion of Assets. (See Loss or Depletion of Assets.)

Direct Relief.—Material relief in the form of cash or orders for food, clothing, fuel, household necessities, rent, transportation, moving, and medical care, in return for which the client is not required to work.

Drought Relief. —Assistance extended to families in the drought areas, often in the form of feed and seed loans with the requirement that they be repaid by work on E. R. A. projects.

Employable Person. (See Worker.)

Employed.—Working for wages, salary, commission, profit, or other contribution to the family income, or enrolled on a pay roll, or occupying a farm with the intention of resuming active work when conditions permit.

Thus, a farm operator residing on a farm, who has suspended operations, as in the drought area, but who intends to resume active farming, is considered employed; a person operating a farm or working on his own account, even though losing money, is considered employed; a person who works regularly on the home farm, or in shop or store, and by this work contributes to the family income is considered employed even though he receives no wages or salary; a worker on strike, on vacation, or temporarily laid off due to illness or disability is considered employed, as long as he is still on a pay roll; a person working as an apprentice is considered employed.

A full-time day school student or a housewife occupied full time in doing her own housework is not considered employed.

Farm.—A tract of land of at least 3 acres or producing agricultural products of at least $250 value per year, which is directly farmed by a farm operator, either by his labor alone or with the assistance of members of his household or hired employees, or operated by a partnership of farm operators.

A farm may consist of a single tract of land or of a number of separate tracts, and these several tracts may be held under different tenures, as when one tract is owned by the farmer and another is rented by him. When a landowner has one or more tenants or man- agers, the land operated by each is considered a farm.

Farm Cropper.—A farm operator who operates hired land only and to whom the landlord furnishes all the work animals; i. e., a farm operator who contributes only his labor and receives in return a share of the crop. In this study, croppers were reported separately from other tenants only in the cotton areas.

Farm Experience. —Number of years a person was engaged in agriculture since 16 years of age.

Farm Laborer. —A worker whose usual or current occupation is work on a farm, with or without wages, under the supervision of the farm operator. This definition includes the wife, children 16 years of age or over, or other members of the farm operator's house- hold who work regularly and most of the time on the household farm (home farm laborers), whether they receive money wages, a share of the crop, or board and room. It does not include household members who perform only incidental chores on the farm. Unless otherwise stated, a farm laborer in this study is one whose usual occupation is that of farm laborer.

Farm Operator. —A worker whose usual or current occupation is the management of a farm, whether as owner or tenant. (See Farm, Farm Owner, Farm Tenant, Farm Cropper.) Unless otherwise stated, a farm operator in this study is one whose usual occupation is that of farm operator.

Farm Owner. —A farm operator who owns all or part of the land which he operates. Salaried farm managers and squatters or homesteaders who are operating farms are classified in this study as farm owners. (See Farm.)

Farm Tenant.—A farm operator who operates hired land only, furnishing all or part of the working equipment and stock, whether he pays cash or a share of the crop, or both, as rent.

Farmer. (See Farm Operator.)

General Relief. —Cash, orders, and/or rental payments, provided wholly or in part by Federal, State, county, or municipal funds designated for the purpose of aiding the unemployed.

Not regarded as general relief are services, such as medical care, without material aid; Federal surplus commodities; mothers' pensions, or other forms of special allowances not reported to the State E. R. A.; earnings or allotments from the Civilian Conservation Corps; transient relief; Works Program wages. (See Direct Relief, Drought Relief, and Work Relief.)

Government Benefit (as reason for closing relief case). —A payment from the Agricultural Adjustment Administration.

Grade Attainment. —The last year successfully completed in grade school, high school, or college.

Head of Household. —If the household consists of only one family, the head of that family is the head of the household. If the household consists of two or more families, the oldest family head is head of the household, unless he or she is 65 years of age or over. In such a case the oldest family head who is less than 65 years of age is head of the household.

In cases of households consisting only of two or more single, widowed, divorced, or separated persons, without children, the person with the largest earnings or property rights is head of the household.

In cases of married couples, with or without children, the husband-father is head, except when he is over 64 years of age and is living with a son or daughter 21-64 years of age who is working or seeking work. In such a case that son or daughter is considered the head.

In the case of a widowed, divorced, separated, or single person with children, the parent is head except when he or she is over 64 years of age and is living with a son or daughter 21-64 years of age who is working or seeking work. In such a case that son or daughter is head.

In cases in which a male and a female are equally eligible on all other grounds to be considered the head, the male is the head. If two or more persons of the same sex are equally eligible on all other grounds to be considered head of a household, the oldest is the head.

Home Farm Laborer. (See Farm Laborer.)

Inexperienced Worker. —A worker 16 to 64 years of age inclusive who has never had employment which lasted for 4 consecutive weeks. (See Worker.)

Lots or Depletion of Assets (as reason for opening relief case).—Loss or depletion of cash reserves, bank deposits, or income- providing investments; cessation of payments on annuities or insurance settlements; loss by fire, etc. Withdrawal of support by relatives or friends is not considered loss or depletion of assets.

New Case. —A case accepted on relief rolls during the month of the survey which had never before received relief from the agency accepting it.

Nonfamily Man.—A man not living with wife or with children.

Nonfamily Woman. —A woman not living with husband or with children.

Normal Family. —Husband and wife, or husband, wife, and children.

Open Country. —Territory outside centers of 50 or more population.

Private Relief Agency. —A relief agency supported principally by private funds. Example: Red Cross.

Public Relief Agency. —A relief agency supported by public funds raised by Federal, State, or local taxation.

Regular Government Employment. —Non-relief, nonemergency employment under Federal, State, county, or municipal governments, as contrasted with work relief, or with emergency government employment.

Rehabilitation Advances. —Money, materials, real estate, or chat- tels. (See Capital Goods and Subsistence Goods.)

Rehabilitation Client. —A person who has at some time received material and/or advisory aid under the rural rehabilitation program and who has not been removed from the active rehabilitation rolls.

Relief. (See General Relief.)

Relief Agency. (See Public Relief Agency and Private Relief Agency.)

Relief Case. —One or more related or unrelated persons who live together, receive assistance as one unit, and are considered as one case by the agency giving the assistance. If two or more families or nonfamily persons or a combination of families and nonfamily persons live together but are treated by the relief agency as separate cases, each is considered a separate case in this survey.

Members of the immediate family away from home temporarily, on vacation, in hospital, in jail, etc., are included in a relief case, provided they are expected to return within 6 months of the time of enumeration. (See General Relief.)

Relief Household. (See Relief Case.)

Relief Period. —The period of time between opening or reopening and closing of a relief case. Renter. (See Farm Tenant.)

Reopened Case.—A case which had been given relief at some time previously, and which was again accepted for relief by the same agency after having received no relief for at least 1 full calendar month or after having lost Works Progress Administration employment or Resettlement status.

Rural. —Open country and village.

Rural Rehabilitation. —A program designed to aid needy agricultural households through loans or grants of capital or subsistence goods and through advice in farm and home management. This program was administered by Rural Rehabilitation Divisions of State and local E. R. A.'s, prior to July 1, 1935, and after that date by the Resettlement Administration.

Seeking Work. —Unemployed and actively looking for a job; or, if temporarily ill or disabled, expecting to look for work as soon as possible; or apparently wanting employment, although not actu- ally looking for work. Students looking for temporary work during vacation periods, or looking for part-time work after full-time school hours, are not regarded as seeking work.

Semiskilled Worker. —Manual worker whose occupation calls for only a short period or no period of preliminary training and for which only a moderate degree of judgment or manual dexterity is necessary. Examples: factory operative, truck driver.

Separations. —Closed relief cases as of a given period.

Sharecropper. (See Farm Cropper.)

Skilled Worker. —Manual worker whose occupation usually calls for a long period of training or apprenticeship, and for a degree of judgment and/or manual dexterity above that required of semiskilled workers. Examples: foreman, blacksmith, carpenter, machinist.

Subsistence Goods (as type of rehabilitation advance).—Cash and/or such commodities or services as food, clothes, fuel, medical care, or any other necessities of life which the rural rehabilitation cases might need, pending their complete rehabilitation (F. E. R. A. Form 22a).

Tenant. (See Farm Tenant.)

Tenure. —The occupational status of a farm operator; i. e., owner, tenant, cropper.

Town. —Center of 2,500 to 5,000 population.

Turn-Over. —The total volume of movement of cases onto and off the relief rolls during a given period of time. (See Accessions and Separations.)

Unemployable Person. —A person under 16 or over 64 years of age, or a person 16 to 64 years of age who is neither working nor seeking work. (See Employed, Worker, and Seeking Work.)

Unskilled Worker. —Manual worker whose occupation calls for no special training, judgment, or manual dexterity. Examples: domestic servant, common laborer.

Usual Occupation. —The occupation in non-relief employment, of at least 4 consecutive weeks' duration at which a worker has been employed the greatest length of time during the last 10 years. If the worker has spent approximately the same length of time at two or more occupations, the one at which he worked last is his usual occupation.

Village. —Center of 50 to 2,500 population.

Worker. —A person 16 to 64 years of age inclusive, working or seeking work. (See Employed and Seeking Work.)

Work Relief. —Relief given under the requirement that some work be done on temporary emergency employment projects undertaken by municipal, county, State, or Federal Government (or several of these in cooperation).

Wage payments to workers employed on the Federal Works Program under the Emergency Relief Appropriation Act of 1935 are not considered work relief. In this study drought relief was classified separately from work relief, although some of it was ex- tended in the form of loans to be repaid by work on E. R. A. projects.

Working. (See Employed.)

Youth. —Persons 16 to 24 years of age inclusive.

Berta Asch and A. R. Mangus, "Appendix C: Glossary," in Farmers on Relief and Rehabilitation, Research Monograph VIII, Works Progress Administration, Division of Social Research, Washington DC: United States Government Printing Office, 1937, pp. 203-210.

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