World War I (1914-1918) was one of the largest wars in history, culminating the in nine million combat deaths and thirteen million civilian casualties. Genocide programs and and the Spanish flu epidemic in 1918 resulted in an additional 17-100 million additional deaths worldwide.
The stock market crash in 1929 led to wide spread financial ruin for investors and businesses. By 1933, the low point of the economic crisis, 15 million American workers were unemployed and nearly half of the nation's banks had failed. International trade fell by over 30% during the crisis, and the economic downturn spread across the globe, encompassing Africa, Asia, Australis, Europe, and the Americas.
See some of the collections listed below for more information about this historical period and its affect on Vanderbilt's history.
Chapter 4: Imperfect though we are: wars against the Great Depression, totalitarianism, and Jim Crow