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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Family Trip: 1937

Family Trip: 1937

May 1937. "Migratory family traveling across the desert in search of work in cotton at Roswell, New Mexico. U.S. Route 70, Arizona." Where are the cupholders on this rig? Dorothea Lange / Resettlement Administration photo. View full size.

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Hard times?

No doubt, but I'll bet those kids told the story of their adventures to their kids, and their grandkids until they were sick of hearing it.

Like a lot of things that seemed terrible at the time it probably becomes a bit more of a romantic adventure years down the road.

There's cotton in Roswell?

A quick look at the Google sat shows many center-pivot irrigation machines in the Roswell vicinity. I'd expect cotton there today. I was a little skeptical that there would have been cotton in the desert in 1937, but what do I know?

There are enough people in that family that there is no way they could have all ridden in the cab of that pickup. It's a good thing the top speed of a Ford Model T is only about 40 mph. Even then, that mattress would have been a "thrill ride".

The Clampetts Prototype

The Beverly Hillbillies, minus the laugh track. Probably very little laughter happening at this moment in this family's life.


I see eight of the old fashioned kind, if you include the 2 kids.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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