Photo Essays, Spot News and Stock Photography

Posts tagged ‘great depression’

BIRMINGHAM, ALABAMA (1932)

You think we have it rough now? Let’s take a look back for a moment. A World War, the Spanish flu which killed 675,000 people in our country that was only 40% of today’s population, discrimination, poll taxes, literacy tests, Jim Crow, the second coming of the Ku Klux Klan and the Great Depression. That’s about as rough as it gets, and it is clear from these photos “Birmingham, Alabama (1932)“. Research indicates that this was Aunt Harriet’s house. The destruction of the fireplace is evident by the pile of bricks seen in the first and third photos. Perhaps they were to be re-used elsewhere, so this scene in the second photo predates the first and third photos. Anyone want to trade places?

Pennsylvania (May 15, 1937)

A VERY SPECIAL LADY

This photo would be typical of those taken from the Farm Security Administration’s collection in the Library of Congress in our opinion. But it does not come from their collection. She belongs to DPI. Moreover, I would argue that this style is similar to that of Russell Lee, one of the great FSA photographers from the 1930s. For us to add this image to our collection was a no-brainer.

 

Amish Woman With A Washtub“; Pennsylvania (May 15, 1937).

The Manhattanite

THE MANHATTANITE

In the midst of the Great Depression this woman prizes her two dogs. She seems economically untouched by the despair in the land. I think that many of us have seen some people take better care of their pets than their children. Lucky dogs!

West Virginia c.1931

HOMAGE TO JACOB RIIS

For me the connection was instantaneous. I guess it was the brick wall. Jacob Riis documented the plight of the poor and their living conditions in New York City at the turn of the 20th century. Required reading is his work How the Other Half Lives (1890). A good number of his photographs contain brick walls. We hope that he would approve of this presentation, “The Empty Box“; West Virginia c.1931.

Migrant Girl c.1936

MIGRANT GIRL

With all eyes focused on the current humanitarian crisis on our southern border let us not forget that U. S. citizens were once also migrants living in squalor in relocation camps during the Great Depression. The power of the still photograph is clearly evident and on display with the recent, tragic photo of the migrant Oscar Alberto Martinez Ramirez and his daughter Valeria who drowned in the Rio Grande at Matamoros while seeking asylum in the United States. I think that it is fair to say that that image will clearly be in the running for the next Pulitizer Prize.

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Lady In A Snowstorm, c.1939

HOMAGE TO THE LADIES

We have many environmental portraits of women included in our People collection. Shown here are three recent arrivals. It should be remembered that for a number of these images women did not as yet have the right to even vote in the United States. Our lead photo is “Lady In A Snowstorm“; Michigan c,1974. When you have to go out for milk and bread nothing, not even a snowstorm can stop this woman.

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