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Pie Town, 1940

Pie Town F.S.A. photographsCreated by: PICRYLDated: 1941
Jack Whinery, homesteader, and his family, Pie Town, New Mexico
Pie Town, New Mexico, is a town with a population of about two hundred that’s named for its famous baked goods. Pie Town photographs, along with 164,000 others taken by F.S.A. photographers, are now stored at the Library of Congress. Russell Lee’s made his photographs in 1940, while on assignment for the Farm Security Administration.
Lee, who had trained as a chemist and then as a painter, was assigned to take pictures “of most anything he can find.” He made six hundred images that give a look at the daily life of a small desert community. Many photographs are color Kodachromes.

It was the time of the Great Depression when lower commodity prices crippled domestic prosperity and price declines destroyed the purchasing power of farmers and other primary producers.
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Saying grace before the barbeque dinner at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Jim Norris, homesteader, Pie Town, New Mexico
Church at Pie Town, New Mexico. This building was a cooperative community enterprise
Homesteader feeding his daughter at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair free barbeque
Bill Stagg turning up pinto beans, Pie Town, New Mexico
Gathering corn in the field, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mrs. Bill Stagg with state quilt that she made, Pie Town, New Mexico. A community settled by about 200 migrant Texas and Oklahoma farmers who filed homestead claims ... Mrs. Stagg helps her husband in the field with plowing planting, weeding corn and harvesting beans. She quilts while she rests during the noon hour.
Main Street, Pie Town, New Mexico

Main Street, Pie Town, New Mexico

Photograph shows building signs: Cafe, Store, General Merchandise.

Field of beans and farmstead of Bill Stagg, homesteader, Pie Town, New Mexico
Church, Pie Town, New Mexico
Initial pin souvenirs at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Pinto bean warehouse, Pie Town, New Mexico
Harvesting corn, Pie Town, New Mexico
Serving pinto beans at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair barbeque
Harvesting new corn from the field of Jim Norris, Pie Town, New Mexico
Grace was said before the barbeque was served at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair

Grace was said before the barbeque was served at the Pie Town, New Mex...

Photo shows 1935 Ford parked in background. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009)

Mr. Leatherman, homesteader, coming out of his dugout home, Pie Town, New Mexico
Bill Stagg, homesteader, with pinto beans, Pie Town, New Mexico
Harvesting new corn from the field of Jim Norris, Pie Town, New Mexico
Garden adjacent to the dugout home of Jack Whinery, homesteader, Pie Town, New Mexico
Jack Whinery and his family, homesteaders, Pie Town, New Mexico
Rodeo at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Jack Whinery, homesteader, and his family, Pie Town, New Mexico

Jack Whinery, homesteader, and his family, Pie Town, New Mexico

Photograph shows Jack Whinery (1907-1994) with his wife Edith and their five children, Wanda, Edith, Velva, Jack and Lawrence in his father's lap. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Jack Whinery, homesteader, with his wife and the youngest of his five children, Pie Town, New Mexico
The Faro Caudill [family] eating dinner in their dugout, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mr. Leatherman, homesteader, with his work burros in front of his barn, Pie Town, New Mexico
Homesteader feeding his daughter at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair free barbeque
Serving up the barbeque at the Pie Town, New Mexico, Fair

Serving up the barbeque at the Pie Town, New Mexico, Fair

Photo shows in background from right to left: a 1938 Chevrolet, a 1938 Pontiac, and a 1940 Ford. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009)

Men in front of outdoor fire, Pie Town Fair, New Mexico
Jack Whinery, homesteader, repairing fence which he built with slabs, Pie Town, New Mexico
Filling station and garage at Pie Town, New Mexico
Pinto beans, main crop at Pie Town, New Mexico
School at Pie Town, New Mexico is held at the Farm Bureau Building
Driving calves into the corral for roping at the rodeo of the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Men of the community of Pie Town, New Mexico eating at the barbeque
Mr. Leatherman, homesteader, tying up cauliflower, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mrs. Norris with homegrown cabbage, one of the many vegetables which the homesteaders grow in abundance, Pie Town, New Mexico
Crowd eating free barbeque dinner at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
The school at Pie Town, New Mexico is held in the Farm Bureau building, which was constructed by cooperative effort
Mrs. Bill Stagg with state quilt, Pie Town, New Mexico
Faro Caudill drawing water from his well, Pie Town, New Mexico
Tying a ribbon on a calf's tail was one of the feature attractions at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair rodeo
Les Thomas, homesteader, Pie Town, New Mexico
Bill Stagg, homesteader, in front of his barn, Pie Town, New Mexico
Home of Jim Norris, homesteader, Pie Town, New Mexico
People at the Fair, Pie Town, New Mexico
School children singing, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mr. Leatherman, homesteader, shooting hawks which have been carrying away his chickens, Pie Town, New Mexico
Getting ready to serve the barbeque dinner at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Pie Town, New Mexico, ... at the fair
Wife of Jim Norris with canned goods, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mrs. [Jim] Norris with homegrown cabbage, one of the many vegetables which the homesteaders grow in abundance, Pie Town, New Mexico
Team pulling a car out of the mud; the roads near Pie Town, New Mexico are not improved
Dugout house of Faro Caudill, homesteader with Mt. Allegro in the background, Pie Town, New Mexico
Cutting the pies and cakes at the barbeque dinner, Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Rodeo at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Homesteader and his children eating barbeque at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Bill Stagg turning up his beans, Pie Town, New Mexico. He will next pile them for curing
Fruit wagon at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair. There is no fruit grown in this section and the people depend on outside truckers to bring it in
School children singing, Pie Town, New Mexico

School children singing, Pie Town, New Mexico

Photograph shows signsCraig Motor Co., Standard Oil, and Magdalena Drug Co.

General Merchandise store, Main Street, Pie Town, New Mexico
Friends meeting at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Faro and Doris Caudill, homesteaders, Pie Town, New Mexico
Jim Norris and wife, homesteaders, Pie Town, New Mexico
Son of Jim Norris, homesteader, tying corn into bundles, Pie Town, New Mexico
Many automobiles were parked in the grove at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Group of homesteaders in front of the bean house which was used for exhibit hall at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Fruit wagon at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair
Jack Whinery and Jim Norris, homesteaders, looking at roots of stalk of corn, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mrs. Bill Stagg with state quilt which she made, Pie Town, New Mexico
Exhibit of crops and vegetables at the Pie Town, New Mexico Fair.
The photographs in the Farm Security Administration / Office of War Information Photograph
Using a broad axe in hewing ties, Pie Town, New Mexico
Wife of farmer at her bookcase in her log home. Pie Town, New Mexico
Folks gathering at the church for the all-day community sing. Pie Town, New Mexico
Faro Caudill, homesteader, at all day Sunday visiting. Pie Town, New Mexico
Taking out food for dinner at the day community sing, Pie Town, New Mexico
Water witch and old time cowboy, Pie Town, New Mexico
Interior of bean warehouse. Pie Town, New Mexico
The photographs in the Farm Security Administration / Office of War Information Photograph
Women fix each other's hair in the absence of a beauty shop at Pie Town, New Mexico
Putting out the food for dinner at community sing. Pie Town, New Mexico
Faro Caudill driving tent posts; the family will live in the tent while the dugout is being rebuilt. Pie Town, New Mexico
Homesteader and his wife in the living room of their new adobe house. This couple came out seven years ago from Oklahoma and lived in a log cabin until building this winter the adobe house. Pie Town, New Mexico
Homesteader's wife peeling potatoes for dinner. Pie Town, New Mexico
Detail of farmer's blue jeans, boots and spurs. This man was once a cowboy and still prefers the cowboy's dress. Pie Town, New Mexico
Mr. Leatherman loads a sack of pinto beans into his cart. It is cutomary for the farmers to leave their beans at the warehouse during the winter months, since Mr. Craig charges no storage fee, and get those necessary for spring planting. Pie Town, New Mexico
The photographs in the Farm Security Administration / Office of War Information Photograph
The photographs in the Farm Security Administration / Office of War Information Photograph
Using a broad axe in hewing ties, Pie Town, New Mexico
Mother and daughter working in the kitchen of the cafe at Pie Town, New Mexico. The daughter with her husband run the cafe
New house of Mr. and Mrs. Craig at Pie Town, New Mexico
Farm women and children laughing at some antics of the menfolks. This was taken during an all day Sunday visiting to celebrate a birthday. Pie Town, New Mexico
Ice cream party at Pie Town, New Mexico. Ice cream is a great treat for someone who must drive thirty or forty miles for ice
Community sing. Pie Town, New Mexico
Mr. Leatherman, homesteader from Texas, leading the singing at church services. Pie Town, New Mexico
Schoolchildrens' band. Pie Town, New Mexico
Two farm women at the dinner of the all day community sing. Pie Town, New Mexico
John Adams, homesteader. He drags ties down from the mountains with his burros to get some cash to get his farm started. He always has time to help a neighbor build a dugout or do any other heavy work. Pie Town, New Mexico
Homemade floater and harrow on farm at Pie Town, New Mexico
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