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Doland: 1942

Doland: 1942

February 1942. "Doland, Spink County, South Dakota." Medium format acetate negative by John Vachon for the Office of War Information. View full size.


It's because it's bread

This puts me in mind of the poem “Grain Elevator” (1947) by the Montreal poet A.M. Klein (1909–1972). The poem includes the lines:

The blind ark lost and petrified? A cave
built to look innocent, by pirates? Or
some eastern tomb a traveled patron here makes local?

My favorite words are, towards the end:

It’s because it’s bread. It’s because
bread is its theme, an absolute.

Puts everything into perspective

What better demonstration of perspective than train tracks, telephone poles, and rectangular buildings? Get out your rulers.

I'm guessing here

There are no railroad tracks in Doland now. I know it's possible to look up old aerials to see exactly where those tracks and buildings were, but I don't know how. So I'm using what I do know to see that today there is an angled street in an otherwise grid patterned town and that angle continues out to the left, well beyond the town. I'm guessing that's where the railroad tracks were. I also see J W Wright has already pasted the same Street View I was about to paste, showing what I think are two surviving grain elevators along what is now First street.

Tracks are gone.

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