Friday, June 27, 2008

Old Black Man

This picture was taken on the porch of a general store near Jeanerette, Louisiana. It was taken in 1938 by Russell Lee. During the Great Depression, the government wanted to document the suffering going on across the country, and hired a group of photographers to travel the rural areas of the Nation, taking pictures of everyday people. This work was done through the Farm Security Administration (FSA). Russell Lee was one of the photographers doing this work. Another was Dorothea Lange, who took the famous picture of the woman holding the baby.


  1. I'm glad we have these photos to give us an idea of what life was like but I can't help but wonder how much money was spent on the project that could have been better used in the hands of the poor and hungry.

  2. Norkio,
    I have contemplated the same question. Mathew Brady documented the Civil War on his own funds, and Edward Curtis documented the Native Americans in the late 1800's and early 1900's on private funds.

  3. Why would it be wrong to give a man or woman a job? That's how you break a country out of a depression... make jobs for people, so that they can go to the grocer to buy food, so that the grocer can then go to the hardware store to buy nails, and so on. Handouts are not always the answer. Sometimes just getting the money out circulating and giving people back a CAREER helps the moral of the country just as much.