FSA Picnic Photograph
Marion Post Wolcott 1910-1990 - Sunday school picnic brought into abandoned mining town of Jere, West Virginia by neighboring parishioners -1938 Sept. Gelatin silver print photograph - FSA (Farm Security Administration)
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This black and white photograph documents rural communities’ daily lives throughout West Virginia. Jere, where this photograph was taken, is an unincorporated community in Monongalia County, West Virginia, United States, and was the site of an abandoned mining community. This image, an image of the community and sharing under times of hardship and duress. Marion Post Wolcott and Ben Shahn were sent to West Virginia by Roy Stryker, head of the FSA photojournalist group for the FSA, to document and reinforce the new deal’s need and document the pain and economic hardship placed on the area. As such, these images and photographs have come to define the national image of West Virginia; however, beyond the suffering and hardship, this group of FSA photographs found joy, a sense of community, and the persistence of the American spirit. This photograph of a group of people enjoying a community picnic on a sunny Sunday afternoon after church, making the best of their lives under harsh conditions. This photograph was acquired through a Washington D.C. art brokerage consulting company and represents an iconic photo in history from the Library of Congress/images of the FSA photographers.