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The Dust bowl

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The Dust bowl. Before After. Causes. Over cultivation of the Great Plains Tractors and Threshers 1830s 58 hrs to plant and harvest one acre with a horse drawn plow 1930s3 hrs with a tractor Topsoil 6 feet deep

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  • Over cultivation of the Great Plains
  • Tractors and Threshers
    • 1830s58 hrs to plant and harvest one acre with a horse drawn plow
    • 1930s3 hrs with a tractor
  • Topsoil 6 feet deep
    • Drought (1930s), high winds, and over cultivation (grass turned over) cause millions of tons of top soil to be carried into the winds.
causes continued
Causes (continued)
  • Drought:
    • In 1931, rainfall amounts begin to drop and summer temperatures are often above 100°
    • Drought conditions worsen throughout decade, normal rainfall does not return until 1939
human toll
Human toll
  • People were affected by the following:
    • Devastation of their cropland
    • Respiratory health issues
    • Unsanitary living
    • Rampant crime
    • Debt-ridden families
dust bowl
Dust Bowl
  • Took place in Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Texas.
  • Severe droughts and dust storms.
  • 60% of the population leaves the region.
black sunday
Black Sunday
  • On April 14, 1935, known as "Black Sunday",
  • Twenty of the worst "Black Blizzards" occurred throughout the Dust Bowl
  • Turned day to night.
  • Witnesses could not see five feet in front of them.
black sunday con
Black Sunday (con.)
  • At times the clouds blackened the sky reaching all the way to East Coast
    • Cities such as New York and Washington, D.C.
    • Much of the soil ended up deposited in the Atlantic Ocean.
dust bowl exodus
Dust Bowl Exodus
  • The Dust Bowl Exodus was the largest migration in American history within a short period of time.
  • By 1940, 2.5 million people had moved out of the Plains states; of those, 200,000 moved to California.
  • Many farm families were forced to leave due to foreclosure and barren land.
    • Okies - Migrants left farms in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Texas, Colorado and New Mexico
  • Over 300,000 people left Great Plains - mostly for west coast
    • Plains continue to be an environmentally sensitive area
  • Dust Bowl refugees meet with hardship and mistrust in new homes
  • US Government sees importance of preventing environmental disasters