Nation: Oklahoma 1970: The Dust Bowl of the '30s Revisited

Most Americans still think of the Oklahoma Dust Bowl, and the Okies who left it, in the bleak terms of John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath. The long drought of the 1930s seared the land, while recurring winds swirled away the topsoil and black blizzards choked crops and cattle. During that decade, more than 350,000 farmers fled the state, leaving a legacy of deserted homes, barren lands and bitter people. In recent years the Dust Bowl has changed dramatically. TIME Correspondent David DeVoss, who revisited the region, tells how and why in this report:...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!