Following World War I, Montana slipped into a deep depression that ran right through the 1920s. When the nation dropped into the Great Depression in 1929, Montana struggled even harder. Drought compounded the economic failure and forced some Montanans to abandon the state for the West Coast. Others worked to be self-sufficient. Montana’s mining, timber, and railroad industries bottomed out. The New Deal programs became a lifeline for the economy of Montana – roads and dams set the stage for later tourism and irrigation.