As a means of documenting the time during The United State’s Great Depression and to instill trust in the citizens of the governments new programs designed to provide aid and relief to the poorest 1/3 of American farmers, the FSA-OWI began working with photographers all over the country to grow a collection of images. The great Dorothea Lange, Walker Evans, and Arthur Rothstein were among some of the photographers involved with the project.
With so many photographs and so many ways to explore all of them, Photogrammar is fairly easy to become immersed in. A person could spend hours perusing through the catalogs (trust me, I speak from experience). The website offers a couple different map interfaces, including the one you see in the screenshot above. You can browse by county or by photographer, which was a nice feature for those of us who enjoy following the works of specific photographers.
There is also a really cool Photogrammar Labs section which has some nifty sorting and searching tools. The Metadata Dashboard breaks things down by state, county, photographers, date, AND classification making it super fast to find exactly what you’re looking for. The Treemap is also a really quick way to get to the point of your search, or, if you’re like me, a quick way to spend an hour and half looking at some incredible vintage photographs.
You can check the project out for yourself by visiting the website at Photogrammar.Yale.edu.