10 votes

Color Pictures from the Great Depression

Via Huffington Post:

These rare color photos from the Great Depression were compiled by the Farm Services Administration from 1939 and 1944. A total of 1,600 pictures are now available online thanks to the Library of Congress. The photos, which depict small town life, industry and recreational activities during the Great Depression included in a 2006 exhibit "Bound for Glory: America in Color."




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I remember this

I think this sparked other debates about how "rough" they really had it compared to what we call "Rough" now. Imagine having no Thermostat.

If I disappear from a discussion please forgive me. My 24-7 business requires me to split mid-sentence to serve them. I am not ducking out, I will be back later to catch up.

Cyril's picture

I had no clue those would exist.

I had no clue those would exist.

Thank you for bringing this thread back up.

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.

http://Laissez-Faire.Me/Liberty

"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

One of my favorites

is the picture's of the two lads fishing in the creek.Thanks for posting the link MN.

I love liberty like fresh cool air in my lungs.I love freedom like fresh cool water on my tongue.I love peace like the smooth skin of my sweet lady.And Dr.Ron Paul is the hero I believe will change the world.

Michael Nystrom's picture

Yeah, thanks for stopping by & hey thanks to

POL POT for bumping this old thread. Look at the date - back from 2010!

I saw the title, and I thought I posted this a long time ago. Stuff gets reposted here all the time, and this is such a classic collection of photos.

But yup - that was me alright!

What comes to mind that I remember from looking through them last time was the everpresent Coca-Cola sign. I commented on that below. The more I thought about it -- you know what I thought?

v a m p i r e

It is always there, never gets old, always hanging around. Still here, to this very day...

(put that in your pipe and smoke it - lol.)

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

Hey - you're welcome. Someone else was looking at this post...

it was in the most viewed so I clicked it because the '20s are my favorite decade. http://www.dailypaul.com/255822/party-hearty-party-nominates...

bonus 1: here's a song they were singing then, presented by the inimitable Beat Farmers:

http://youtu.be/BTlXjShG4XQ
bonus 2: Just remembered an awesome book about that era. Gotta remember that title...

watch The Panda/NAFTA Connection
tonight @ 9:00, 8 central

Thanks!

Now I will be whistleing that tune all day.

I love liberty like fresh cool air in my lungs.I love freedom like fresh cool water on my tongue.I love peace like the smooth skin of my sweet lady.And Dr.Ron Paul is the hero I believe will change the world.

Why are old pictures in black and white?


...

watch The Panda/NAFTA Connection
tonight @ 9:00, 8 central

Michael Nystrom's picture

Nice

+

Positivity (yes!)
Have you had your plus sign today?
Positivity.
Do we mark you present
Or do we mark you late?

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

I miss Bill Watterson

The man is brilliant. I know that he rarely, if ever, does interviews. He likes to keep to himself. And if I had to guess, judging by the deep philosophic conversations between Calvin and Hobbes, I'd say he's on the same page that we are.

The only product he ever licensed Calvin and Hobbes for...

was a book for english teachers. It's worth a mint. Here's one you can get for only $5000
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Teaching-with-Calvin-and-Hobbes-by-B...

Yeah - Watterson is awesome. The irony is that the character 'Calvin' is like Hobbes the philosopher, while 'Hobbes' is the Calvinistic one.

watch The Panda/NAFTA Connection
tonight @ 9:00, 8 central

Bringing back memories...

Picking potatoes in Caribou, Maine in the early '50,s...
I started gardening in the early '40,s... and still do garden today...
Remember it well! The Hobos and all (never met a bad one)...
By the way, I refuse to participate in this depression... Thanks...

Joel - A 70+ Survivalist...
http://cegsilver.com

"Those who give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
- Ben Franklin
"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."
- Thomas Jefferson
"Dissent

If having

a memory of back then, is the Depression of the 30/40s different than today's circumstances?

Cyril's picture

Possibly, we ain't seen nothing yet.

Can't speak for 70 years ago of course, but as for today, I'm afraid we ain't seen nothing yet. :(

Still, I sure wish I am really, totally, wrong.

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.

http://Laissez-Faire.Me/Liberty

"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

Love the pics.

I'd be willing to bet that most modern folks who look at these pics are aghast at "how poor" these people seem to be.

However, those very same kinds of settings were very normal all over the country, even prior to the depression.
People didn't think the same way then as now. It was perfectly fine to have a little ramshackle place that needed a bit of whitewashing and repair.

Even in the 1950s, you can look at the sets of some movies and TV series, like the "Honeymooners". A sink, a small fridge, a kitchen table, and a credenza was all they had. Oh, and a fire-escape outside the window.
This was normal city dwelling. It wasn't odd. Hanging laundry out the window over the courtyard in the "brownstone" apartment housing neighborhoods was what everybody did.
Air conditioning was practically unheard of.
Most people had wood stoves or coal stoves. Alot of people had no hot water, or not even any running water.
In some cases there was no electricity even.

The world lives very differently today than ever before in history. It doesn't require what we have to LIVE. People can have a good life with very little, and not be pining for the latest car or I-phone or Wii, or whatever.

I think these photos are a good reminder of how the salt of the earth lived, and in many ways it is much better than our rat-race existence now. "

good points, BigT and Living free--

we live in a home built in the depression; it was originally heated by coal. It has since had a furnace put into it (gas), but we heat mostly with wood.

I often wonder what this house "saw" during those years--

and I am concerned about what this house will "see"--

Spouse and I 'argue' about this; what will happen to 'poor' people like ourselves, who live simply but still are connected to the grid and still have a mortgage (a small one, and no other debt)--

who will be better off: we with our woodstove/wood supply (yes enough for a hard winter) and our supply of candles and gas lamps and our full pantry and our stored grains/legumes, etc., but with a small mortgage and needing to 'work'--
or some professional people we know who have an immense paid for home in the country with no garden and no food stored and no alternate heating source?

We have a mortgage; they don't. And we garden extensively.

Now, it's not a competition, but one of us says the people with no food and a paid for mortgage will do better than we will; the other says we will do better.

Can't do anything about it at this point; we have been able to make our mortgage payment every month--

So, who WILL be better off? Those who are plugged in and have an expensive lifestyle to sustain but NO debt . . . or those with a mortgage who can live sustainably besides the mortgage?

we aren't equipped at the time to pay off our home, even though it's old and small; we had valid reasons for 'buying', and we don't regret it--

but I like your attitudes--

not participate; yes, that's good.

We do work harder, though; we make sure our pantry is stocked and that we have all our root vegetables in our cold room before the real cold sets in--

and lots of wood . . .

but we store our wood outside, and we have had to realize that others might try to take it--

I won't use violence to protect my fuel source.

We don't own a microwave or any electric kitchen gadgets; we have hand-powered equipment for most everything (including a washing machine)--

it's hard to be awake; it's easier to dream--

Michael Nystrom's picture

I think this will come in handy

In the second great depression:

http://dailypaul.com/node/142116

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

LOL,I clicked your link to the node

I kicked me out and I had to sign back in?

If I disappear from a discussion please forgive me. My 24-7 business requires me to split mid-sentence to serve them. I am not ducking out, I will be back later to catch up.

thank you, Michael--

my grandmothers both fed hobos--

maybe they fed your father.

I know they weren't popular with the neighbors for doing it, but they both did--

one in the north; one in the south; my grandmothers didn't know each other then.

These photos do look familiar, that lean look.

Well, fwiw, spouse makes sauer kraut; I make pickles; we can butcher; we garden extensively and do compost, and several in our family can sew clothing.

Leather; not so successful, but we have some tools for it. Also, we do use axes still; we have a handsaw, and we turn our garden soil with a shovel, not with a rototiller, and we have much garden.

One of the things these people didn't do was have commercial haircuts; you can tell; that doesn't make them 'poor', but most of the people have the same 'look'.
my parents were both children and teens during the depression.

I don't think the depression really 'ended' until the war; America joined the war in 1942, correct, after Pearl Harbor--

I was fed the 'lie' that the war made America prosperous.

I never did understand that.

it's hard to be awake; it's easier to dream--

WWII ?

The Great Depression happened before color film. I'm confused about the dates. I haven't looked at all the pix, but the ones I looked at were during WWII.

It is true there was some war-rationing during WWII, and the government made it worse by price-fixing and banning "war-profiteering," but it wasn't The Great Depression.

What do you think? http://consequeries.com/

Many would argue

that the Great Depression didn't end until 1947.

Austrian economists, for example, but I don't have a link handy.

Free includes debt-free!

Cyril's picture

Check out Chris Silber's links

You may find something you have come across before, at Chris Silber's nice link collection:

http://chrissilber.blog.com/

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.

http://Laissez-Faire.Me/Liberty

"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

Wonderful pics...

What a trip back in time. I have a few pics of my parents (1940's) that would fit right in that gallery.

Michael Nystrom's picture

You know what's weird?

Is the pervasiveness of the Coca Cola sign.

Like an arrow through time. Everything else seems to change, but Coca Cola has been there the whole time.

No High Fructose Corn Syrup back then, though.

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

You can still get Coca Cola

You can still get Coca Cola with real sugar during Passover and Hanukkah. It only comes in 2 liter bottles. It has Yiddish, or whatever, writing on the side. Its sold in the Ethnic food aisle instead of the normal soda aisle. A Jewish friend told me about it and I was blown away, its really good.

Paul and no Bank.

When I'm dying for a Coke I

When I'm dying for a Coke I look for the Mexican import in the glass bottle. There's a gas station not far from my house that sells it. I'd buy Jones, but it's hard to find individually and I prefer not to keep it around the house.

Problem with the Mexican import is its made with

water that is questionable even though its made with sugar.

Michael Nystrom's picture

FYI - Gallery view

I just discovered it, so I thought I'd share.

There is Gallery view that makes looking at the pics easier:

http://www.loc.gov/pictures/search/?c=100&sp=1&co=fsac&st=ga...

(see the top right corner above the pics for the different viewing options)

All art is only done by the individual. The individual is all you ever have, and all schools only serve to classify their members as failures. E.H.

bookmarked!

Again, thank you Micheal. These gems are a real find : )

I actually downloaded a bunch of these from a news site

a few days ago- was interested in finding out where I could get more- thank you! I could spend hours looking at each one. The actual colors of the signage and clothes- and the cars that were used back then are something we rarely see. I think subconsciously ( as silly as it sounds) we tend to accept that life was fleshy and dripping with color from about 1400 ad-1750 ad ,then life became black & white until 1965 when it seemed to be Technicolour lol. These photos really lend an air of reality to a generation we've all but forgotten. They were just like us. Perhaps some of the children in the photos are still living. What a kick it would be for them to see color photos from their childhood!