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Dust Bowl Era

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Farmer and sons walking in the face of a dust storm. Cimarron County, Oklahoma.

Farmer and sons walking in the face of a dust storm. Cimarron County, Oklahoma.

The grasslands of the High Plains of Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico were subjected to years of overfarming in the 1920s and years of drought in the 1930s that resulted in a series of devastating "black blizzards."  Millions of tons of dust were blown all across the nation, forcing more than a quarter of a million Americans to flee their ruined farms and homes.

Weedpatch Camp

America from the Great Depression to WWII: Photographs from the FSA-OSI, 1935-1945.  Library of Congress - American Memory.

Dorothea Lange's "Migrant Mother" Photographs in the Farm Security Administration Collection: An Overview. Library of Congress - American Memory.

Voices from the Dust Bowl: The Charles L. Todd and Robert Sonkin Migrant Worker Collection. Library of Congress - American Memory 

For more information about the Dust Bowl era, please see our Library Resources.