Farm Security Administration / Office of War Information Photograph Collection
This unparalleled photographic record of American life between 1935 and 1942, a project of the Farm Security Administration (FSA), is the best known and most heavily used collection in the Prints and Photographs Division. It consists of over 270,000 photographs that document rural conditions, life in urban communities, and the domestic side of the war effort, taken by a gifted team of photographers, headed by Roy E. Stryker, that included Carl Mydans, Walker Evans, Ben Shahn, Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein, Russell Lee, and Jack Delano. Their experience with new forms and techniques, in Stryker's opinion, did "for professional photography what the WPA Theatre was doing for the stage." In the past decade over a dozen major books based on the FSA collection have been published, along with a microfiche edition of selected photographs.