Walker Evans


“On July 16, 1936, photographer Walker Evans took a leave of absence from the Farm Security Administration (FSA) to accept a summer assignment with Fortune magazine. Evans, who had begun working as a photographer in 1928, had developed a modest reputation by the time he was hired in October 1935 by Roy Stryker, leader of the FSA photographic unit. Stryker agreed to give him leave for the magazine assignment on condition that his photographs remain government property.

For about six weeks, Evans and the writer James Agee stayed with sharecropper families in Hale County, Alabama. The article they produced was a poetic documentation of the lives of poor Southern farmers afflicted by the Great Depression; their work, however, did not meet Fortune’s expectations and was rejected for publication.”

The Library of Congress Archives

Image: Walker Evans,
Edwin Locke, photographer,
February 1937.
FSA/OWI Photographs, 1935-1945