Arts and crafts from the Milwaukee Handicraft Project, 1939

Milwaukee WPA Handicraft Project Material Cost List

The Milwaukee Handicraft Project was a program of the Work Projects Administration (WPA), which was created in 1935 to put unemployed Americans to work. Between 1935 and 1943, the MHP trained African American residents of Milwaukee to produce art such as rugs, baskets, quilts, book-bindings, costumes, draperies, toys, and games. Their work was sold at cost to educational and tax-supported institutions such as the Milwaukee Public Schools. This mimeographed catalog lists all the MHP products for sale in 1939 and provides details about their materials, physical size, and pricing. Loosely inserted is a copy of the form that customers completed when ordering goods. Examples of MHP book-bindings can be seen elsewhere at Turning Points in Wisconsin History by searching for "Milwaukee Handicraft Project."

Related Topics: Wisconsin's Response to 20th-century change
Depression and Unemployment
Creator: Milwaukee WPA Handicraft Project .
Pub Data: Milwaukee, Wis., 1939; digitized from a copy at the Wisconsin Historical Society Library (US Government Publications in Rare Book Collection Call No. FW 4.2: Z999/4).
Citation: Milwaukee WPA Handicraft Project. Material Cost List (Milwaukee, Wis., 1939); Online facsimile at:; Visited on: 5/8/2021