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The Drakemobile: 1942

The Drakemobile: 1942

February 1942. "Weslaco, Texas. Farm Security Administration camp (Mercer G. Evans farm workers' community). Return from Saturday shopping. FSA client Nathan Drake at right." Medium format acetate negative by Arthur Rothstein. View full size.


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Depression Consciousness

My parents said that people who lived through the Great Depression and into the postwar era of prosperity remembered the Depression and knew it could all be gone again overnight. They saved their money, didn't trust bankers, didn't leave lights on when leaving a room, frequently made meals out of leftovers, drove their cars until they were worn out but kept them in good running order as long as possible.

Excellent angle

The charm of the shot is that the photographer got down to shoe level. It puts Nathan head and shoulders (and hat) above the top of the Drakemobile.

Camera placement

On the ground, I assume. It accounts not only for the view of the sole of the man’s shoe but also for a certain sense of drama. (Imagine seeing them in slow motion against a shimmering background.) I think it might also account for the look of vague amusement on their faces.

That Drakemobile

looks to be a 1933 Chrysler Royal Eight. Looking good for a nine year old car. With gas rationing nine months away, that will be one thirsty problem. I hope it survived the war years and beyond.

Just for kicks

I like all three faces but especially that of the lady on the left. She's quite pretty and appears to have a wry sense of humor. Also her shoes are the bomb. If I had those I'd save them for Sundays.

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