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June 24, 2020

Fascinating Photos Capture Everyday Life of the U.S Just After the Great Depression by Marion Post

Born 1910 in New Jersey, American photographer Marion Post worked for the Farm Security Administration during the Great Depression documenting poverty and deprivation.

Post’s photographs for the FSA often explore the political aspects of poverty and deprivation. They also often find humor in the situations she encountered.

In 1978, Post mounted her first solo exhibition in California, and by the 1980s, the Smithsonian and the Metropolitan Museum of Art began to collect her photographs. The first monograph on Marion Post’s work was published in 1983.

Post was an advocate for women’s rights; in 1986, she said: “Women have come a long way, but not far enough. . . . Speak with your images from your heart and soul” (Women in Photography Conference, Syracuse, N.Y.).

Marion Post’s work is archived at the Center for Creative Photography at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona. She died in 1990 at the age of 80.

These fascinating photos are part of her work that Marion Post captured everyday life of the U.S from 1939 to 1941, just after the Great Depression.

Cooperative gas station at Greenbelt, Maryland, 1938

A FSA (Farm Security Administration) borrower building a new gate for his yard, Prairie Farms, Montgomery, Alabama, 1939

A rainy evening in New York City looking west toward Hudson River from University Place, 1939

Tourist court near Plant City, Florida, 1939

Spectators at the Duke University-North Carolina football game, Durham, North Carolina, 1939

Children on the steps of Mrs. Brown's home. FSA (Farm Security Administration) borrower on Prairie Farms, Montgomery, Alabama, 1939

Students during change of classes, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 1939

Public health doctor giving a tenant family medicine for malaria, near Columbia, South Carolina, 1939

Dade City tourist camp, Florida, 1939

Cotton snakes, waste cotton picked from floors of sampling and classing rooms in brokers' offices on Cotton Row, Front Street, Memphis, Tennessee, 1939

Domestic servants waiting for a streetcar on their way to work early in the morning, Mitchell Street, Atlanta, Georgia, 1939

Impoverished farmers sleeping in a white camp room in a warehouse. They often must remain several days before their tobacco is sold. Durham, North Carolina, 1939

General town meeting place the park, Lakeland, Florida, 1939

Home of one of two families who travel and work together all through the South, repairing stalls, stoves, tools, houses, and any other odd jobs. Tourist camp near Atlanta, Georgia, 1939

Horse races, Hialeah Park, Miami, Florida, 1939

In an old hotel building in Dover, Georgia, 1939

June in January, Miami Beach, Florida, 1939

Sidewalk traffic on main street on the day of tobacco auctions in Mebane, North Carolina, 1939

A rainy evening in New York City, looking north from University Place, 1939

Farmers playing cards on a winter morning, Woodstock, Vermont, 1939

Primary class in new school, Prairie Farms, Montgomery, Alabama, 1939

Beach bathers at Miami Beach, Florida, 1939

Students on steps of building between classes, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Orange County, 1939

Southern U.S., Mississippi, 1939

The beach front at Miami Beach, Florida, 1939

Street in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 1939

The horse races at Hialeah Park, Miami, Florida, 1939

The ski town of Woodstock, Vermont is generally very crowded with skiers on weekends, 1939

The ski town of Woodstock, Vermont is generally very crowded with skiers on weekends, 1939

Copper mining and sulfuric acid plant, Copperhill, Tennessee, 1939

Dade City tourist camp, Florida, 1939

Watching a baseball game, Atlanta, Georgia, 1939

Lunchroom near Belle Glade, Florida, 1939

A country store in Natchez, Mississippi, 1940

A rural scene in Louisiana, 1940

A Southern landscape, 1940

A black tenant's home beside the Mississippi River levee, near Lake Providence, Louisiana, 1940

A cross roads store, bar, juke joint, and gas station in the cotton plantation area, Melrose, Louisiana, 1940

Snow drifts and a driveway along the main highway near Rockville, Maryland, 1940

View of the Colonial Cottage Court for tourists outside of Louisville, Kentucky, 1940

Townspeople discussing the severe winter on the street corner in center of town in Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Residential section of North Conway, New Hampshire, 1940

Outside Natchez, Mississippi, 1940

Farmers near Woodstock, Vermont bring their cans of milk to the crossroads early every morning where it is picked up by the coop farmers' truck and is taken to the city, 1940

Harvesting oats in southeastern Georgia, 1940

Horse and his shelter on a farm in Montgomery County, Maryland, 1940

Hired man on a farm near Woodstock, Vermont, usually empties the radiator in his car every evening and refills it again with water in the morning to save the cost of antifreeze, 1940

Horse and sled of a garbage and rubbish collector, Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Mailman making deliveries after a heavy snowfall, Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Mailman making deliveries after a heavy snowfall, Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Mailman making deliveries after a heavy snowfall, Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Street scene in Port Gibson, Mississippi, 1940

Farmer's Co-op truck full of milk cans driving into town, 1940

Storefront with advertising signs in Natchez, Mississippi, 1940

Snowy night in the Center of town in Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Mailboxes for farms on the highway near Frederick, Maryland, 1940

Townspeople of Woodstock, Vermont, discussing the severe winter on the street corner in center of town, 1940

Townspeople of Woodstock, Vermont, discussing the severe winter on the street corner in center of town, 1940

Two men on a street in Woodstock, Vermont, 1940

Port Gibson, Mississippi, 1940

Sunday afternoon in New Orleans, Louisiana, 1941

Sunday afternoon in New Orleans, Louisiana. Men playing checkers, 1941

Winter tourist reading a magazine beside his trailer home, Sarasota trailer park, Sarasota, Florida, 1941

The Sawatch mountains near Buena Vista, Colorado, 1941

(Photo © Marion Post)




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