Friday, May 20, 2011

Great Depression Era Exposures in Rare Color Photographs

In the bleak light of the Depression: Rare colour photographs of the era that defined a generation

It was an era that defined a generation. The Great Depression marked the bitter and abrupt end to the post-World War 1 bubble that left America giddy with promise in the 1920s. Near the end of the 1930s the country was beginning to recover from the crash, but many in small towns and rural areas were still poverty-stricken. These rare photographs are some of the few documenting those iconic years in colour. The photographs and captions are the property of the Library of Congress and were included in a 2006 exhibit Bound for Glory: America in Color. The images, by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information, shed a bleak new light on a world now gone with the wind.

What was he thinking as this picture was taken? A young boy in Cinncinnati, Ohio, in 1942 or 1943

Full plates: Homesteader and his children eating barbeque at the New Mexico Fair in Pie Town, New Mexico, October, 1940

Peace: Boys fishing in a bayou in Schriever, Louisiana, June, 1940

Top, a woman cradles a young child at the Bayou Bourbeau plantation, a Farm Security Administration cooperative in the vicinity of Natchitoches, Louisiana, August, 1940. Bottom, a welder making boilers for a ship at the Combustion Engineering Company in Chattanooga, Tennessee, June, 1942

Top, Mike Evans, a welder, at the rip tracks at Proviso yard of the Chicago and Northwest Railway Company, in Chicago, Illinois, April 1943. Bottom, a shepherd with his horse and dog on Gravelly Range Madison County, Montana, August 1942

A woman's work is never done: Mrs Viola Sievers, one of the wipers at the roundhouse, giving a giant 'H' class locomotive a bath of live steam in Clinton, Iowa, April 1943

Part of the South Water Street freight depot of the Illinois Central Railroad in Chicago, Illinois, May 1943

Having a chat: Women workers employed as wipers in the roundhouse having lunch in their rest room at the Chicago and Northwest Railway Company in Clinton, Iowa, April 1943

Top, farmers planting corn along a river in north-eastern Tennessee, May 1940. Bottom, boys hauling crates of peaches from the orchard to the shipping shed in Delta County, Colorado, September 1940

Like a hobbit house: Garden adjacent to the dugout home of homesteader Jack Whinery, in Pie Town, New Mexico, September 1940

Steal of a deal Top, the Grand Grocery Company in Lincoln, Nebraska, 1942. Bottom, the Faro Caudill family eating dinner in their dugout in Pie Town, New Mexico, October 1940

Distributing surplus commodities in St Johns, Arizona, October 1940

Shasta dam under construction in California, June 1942

An African American's tenant's home beside the Mississippi River levee near Lake Providence, Louisiana, June 1940

Rough men stand ready: M-4 tank crews of the United States in Fort Knox, Kentucky, June 1942

Top:Faro and Doris Caudill, homesteaders, in Pie Town, New Mexico, October 1940. Lower photo: a woman working on a 'Vengeance' dive bomber in Tennessee, February 1943

Flying away: A marine glider at Page Field in Parris Island, South Carolina, May 1942, top. Bottom, servicing an A-20 bomber. Langley Field, Virginia, July 1942

Facing life head on: Jack Whinery, homesteader, and his family in Pie Town, New Mexico, October 1940

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