Friday, January 22, 2010

Dust Bowl

Today's picture shows the son of a farmer in Cimarron County, Oklahoma. It was taken in 1936. When people think of the Great Depression, I think they primarily think of the stock market crash, and resulting unemployment. Sometimes I think we forget at the same time, we were hit with the dust bowl. During the dust bowl it pretty much stopped raining over lots of the parts of the country. Without rain, it was impossible for farmers or ranchers to survive. So, lots of the people that were see in the migrant camps and moving across the country with their families in cars were former Oklahoma farmers and ranchers who had lost their rain.


  1. It looks like there is a pretty good wind right then. The child is leaning into it pretty hard.
    Notice that the shed behind him is sitting in a hollow caused be the drifting dirt. Looks like about a foot to a foot and a half of dirt has built up around the shed.

  2. PJM I sent a link to your blog to my 82 year old friend in Sanctuary Cove, Australia.
    She, in turn, sent the link to your Pony in the House to all of her email buddies, saying "If you have time for only one thing today, read this! I laughed and laughed."

  3. I think another problem was poor use of the land due to overfarming. Weather was definitely a factor as well.

  4. This child is beautiful. Looks like he could be my son. Wonder what happened to his boy?

  5. Beautiful photo. Captures the moment, the era, and the conditions perfectly.

  6. What a darling little boy... I love his little hat. and his shoes. and his overalls too. Like anon said, I wonder what happened to this little sweetheart...

  7. i used to be that cute,,guess i still am on the inside,,ahahhahaa,

  8. A really touching photo.
    Have enjoyed this weeks subject,
    with excellent photographs.
    It must have been very hard for
    so many people.
    I hope the little boy got through
    it all and had a good life.

  9. Keep on posting such articles. I like to read articles like this. BTW add some pics :)

  10. I watched a PBS special on the dust bowl and a lot of these children had lung problems from all the dust. They even shipped some of them out of the dust bowl to special sanitariums to recover. I especially remember the story about the doctor telling the sixteen year old boy, "Son, you are filled up with dust." shortly before he died. Sad stories, babies dying from lung problems, etc. Hard times. This little boy is cute. I hope he lived a good long life.