By the 1920s, American prison system had existed for more than one hundred years. The great depression of the 1930s changed how people viewed imprisonment and prisons in general. From 1925 to 1935, the rate of imprisonment improved from 79% to 137%. The increment was brought by greater incarceration of African Americans. Between 1930 and 1936, black incarceration levels rose by three times those of whites. White incarceration rates declined at this time.
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