California Odyssey: Bibliography


Dust Bowl Migration Bibliography

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“$10,000 Appropriated for More Migratory Labor Camps.” Shafter Progress (May 10, 1935): 1.

“200 Porterville Men Work Under U.S. Relief Plan.” Fresno Bee (Dec. 1, 1933): 1.

“400,000 Fled West From Dust Bowl; Flow Begins Reverse.” Fresno Bee (March 19, 1972):1.

“800,000 Now On New Deal Rolls.” Shafter Press (Jan. 23, 1935): 1.

“Absorption of Migrants Is Predicted.” The Bakersfield Californian (Nov. 30, 1939):1. [on file]

“An Absurdity.” Bakersfield Californian (Dec. 9, 1940): 20.

“Actress Asks Fair Wages for Migrants.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (1939): 5.

[Ad for cotton pickers near Phoenix.] Daily Oklahoman (Oklahoma City) 1937 September 11: 10.

“Attempt to Suppress John Steinbeck’s Novel Causes Much Criticism.” Labor Clarion (1939): 12. [on file]

Explores the protest against the Associated Farmers’ campaign to censor John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath. Reports that Carey McWilliams, director of the State Division of Immigration and Housing,  has condemned the banning of the book in Kern County along with the League of American Writers. Argues that the banning of the book is a violation of democracy and that Steinbeck has made a valuable contribution by bringing attention to the plight of migratory workers in California.

Alexander, Toni. “Citizenship Contested: The 1930s Domestic Migrant Experience in California’s San Joaquin Valley.” Southeastern Geographer 51.1 (2011):186-208. [on file]

_____. “Welcome to Old Times’: Inserting the Okie Past into California’s San Joaquin Present.” Journal of Cultural Geography 26.1 (Feb. 2009):71-100. [on file]

Allen, Charlotte. “Beloved ‘Grapes of Wrath’ Is Bad Fiction and Bad History.” The Bakersfield Californian (Apr. 20, 2014):15. See reply to this article: Hernandez, Jack. “The Grapes of Rant: Steinbeck Critique Badly Misses the Point.” The Bakersfield Californian (May 2, 2014):19. [both articles on file]

Allen, W.V. “California’s Migrant Labor Problem.” September 1939: ??. Ames, Alden Judge (San Francisco Municipal Court). “Reply to ‘Who Is a Vagrant in California’ in California Law Review July 1935.” California Law Review 23 (July 1935): 616-620.

Ames, Alden. “A Reply to ‘Who Is a Vagrant in California?'” California Law Review 23 (September 1935): 616-20

Responds to the argument that anti-vagrancy laws are unconstitutional by pointing out that courts have had time and opportunity to review them and thus far on the whole have not spoken out against them, indicating that they are both legal and within the proper scope of police power. As for their language, there is no problem posed by the concept of status. For example, those declared as insane, juvenile delinquents, or chronically alcoholic, which are certainly kinds of status, are legitimately incarcerated for public safety. Vagrancy as a status, therefore, is not fundamentally different.

“And Still They Come.” Los Angeles Times (Sept. 8, 1935):14. [on file]

Director Carleton (Federal Transient Service) is taking drastic measures to curtail the record breaking numbers of migrants coming to California. States that “the August (1935) figures break all records, the rate being more than 2000 a week, 8048 for the month, counting only those who entered in out of State automobiles.” Reports that the migrant problem is a federal problem on and as such hopes that Carleton follows through with his solutions, which include: “that no jobs would be given transients in any Federal work relief program, that Federal transient camps would be closed to those who used them merely as hotel accommodations, and that indigents entering the State would be departed, at Federal expense.”

Anderson, A.E. “The Children in Fruit-Picker Camps.” Oakland Post-Inquirer (Aug. 23, 1937):10. [on file]

Claims to have observed migrant children California fruit camps: “I’ve talked with them, gone into some of the homes, watched them when they didn’t know they were being observed.” Anderson concludes that these children “simple, quiet, mannerly, unostentatious. . . .They seem in fact almost too quiet as they stand around looking at you with calm, considering eyes, very much as calves might gaze.” Anderson is impressed that they don’t “show off, like the indulged children of more prosperous parents . . . . They seem more afraid of saying too much than too little.”  He calls the migrant parents “foreigners”  who see the townspeople  of not having the “true religion” and warn their children of adopting the locals’ “loose smarty talk” and “unrighteous ways”. To Anderson, “their speech, with its limp, drawling tone, its queer old English usages, its odd expressions, like “plumb wore out,” its mak-ens and tak-ens and go-ens and do-ens, is a constant delight.”

Anderson, Mary (Director, Women’s Bureau, U.S. Dept. of Labor). “On the Trail of the Migrant.” American Federationist (July 1932): 775-780. [on file]

Anderson, Nels. On Hobos and Homelessness. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1998.

Men on the Move. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1940. [on file]

_____. On Hobos and Homelessness. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago, 1998.

_____. “Are the Unemployed a Caste?” Survey Graphic (July 1935): 345-347.

Ardelt, Monika.“Another ‘Grapes of Wrath’?” East Bay Labor Journal, (May 3, 1940): Editorial Page. [on file]

Draws a sharply negative parallel between the ostensibly growing demand for labor being advertised by California’s aviation industry and the handbills promising employment in California for migrants from the Southwest during the mid-1930s as featured in The Grapes of Wrath.

Armstrong, Ruth. “To Migrants.” Los Angeles Times (29 March 1940):A-4.

Sympathetically compares the migrants to pioneers and encourages them to keep their faith during this national crisis.

Arnold, Murray. “Steinbeck Hits Big Time Because of Kern.” Bakersfield Californian (April 9,1978).

Athearn, Leigh. “Unemployment Relief in Labor Disputes California’s Experience.” Social Service Review 14(4) (Dec.1940): 627-654. [on file]

Examines California’s history of handling relief problems as they affected strikers and their families from 1935-1939. Study analyzes the circumstances under which persons engaged in or affected by labor disputes received relief payments from the California State Relief Administration under the California Unemployment Relief Act of 1935. Author concludes with an evaluation of policy stating that the history of the policy of “administrative determination” was a major departure from the “federal policy” which preceded it. Chief among its changes were the requirement that former employees accept jobs under strike conditions, that the plant is operating at near to normal capacity, and that any wage which may be prevailing at the moment be accepted, regardless of the existence of a labor dispute. Athearn recommends a reexamination of the policy of “administrative determination” in California and in other states where similar policy exists.

Auerback, Jerold S. “The La Follette Committee: Labor and Civil Liberties in the New Deal.” Journal of American History 51.3 (Dec.1964): 435-459. [on file] See also Auerback’s Labor and Liberty: The La Follette Committee and the  New Deal. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merril, 1966.

Babb, Sandra, Dorothy Babb, and Douglas C. Wixson. On the Dirty Plate: Remembering the Dust Bowl Refugee Camps. Austin: University of Texas, 2007. Print.

On the Dirty Plate Trail is the documentary account of the writings and photographs of sisters, Sonora and Dorothy Babb, with introduction and commentaries by Douglas Wixson.  Wixson parallels the Dust Bowl migration to other mass displacements that have occurred throughout history where groups of people were forced out of their homes to regions with native populations who were hostile to newcomers. Wixson highlights the history of the migrant movement in California and gives context to the Babb sisters’ compassion for outcasts and their activism for reform.  The introduction gives a history of the Babb sisters and establishes that their empathy for the Dust Bowl refugees in later years had very much to do with their own itinerant and poverty-stricken childhood in the southern Midwest.  In the 1930s, Sonora Babb began her literary career in journalism and further developed a compassionate social consciousness that led her to document labor conditions in various states.  Her work in government sponsored camps for refugees paved the way for her interactions with Dust Bowl refugees in Kern County.

Divided into five chapters, Dirty Plate Trail contains the field notes taken from Sonora Babb’s own journals during the time she spent with migrants in California, as well as Dorothy Babb’s unique, unposed photographs she took of the migrants.  Throughout the book there are also fictional stories and prose about the Dust Bowl refugees that were written by Sonora as she witnessed the events of the time.  Sonora Babb’s writings, composed in the late 1930s, are an intimate look at the migrant experience witnessed by someone who lived and worked alongside them and who sought to understand the people as the individuals they were, rather than the stereotypical picture that was often painted of them at the time and since.

Bailey, Stanley. “Squalor—Result of Migrations.” San Francisco Chronicle (Feb. 12, 1940): 1. [on file]

Describes the living conditions of migrants who can no longer follow the harvest and settle into slums and shanty-towns. Drawing upon observations from visits to migrant slums surrounding Stockton, the article recounts how it and many others are privately owned, although by whom it does not say, and built on lots adjacent to cities. Migrants pay rent for the ground beneath their shacks and it is “not uncommon” for up to eight people to live in a single room shack. In one visit, approximately 650 people were found living in uninhabitable structures. It further reports that city residents widely agree that closing the slums and resettling the migrants requires federal intervention. Pursuant to that end, the State Division of Immigration and Housing plans a survey of the slums through the Work Projects Administration, hoping to draw federal funds that mitigate the $26,000 that the state pays for relief rent for San Joaquin County alone.

Bakersfield Californian (Feb. 21, 1935): 1. [Letter to the editor]

Bakersfield Californian (December 11, 1935). [Letter to editor.]

Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 28, 1939): 1. [Letter to editor]

Barry, John D. “Ways of the World—The Grapes of Wrath.” San Francisco News (June 2, 1939): 2. [on file]

Succinctly reviews The Grapes of Wrath by soliciting opinions from many different people. On the whole, the expressed opinions of its worth are positive but strongly disagree on whether Steinbeck should have written dialogue and scenes that are in such “bad taste,” as one respondent puts it, because its coarseness might offend many readers, thus blunting the effectiveness of its message and even leading libraries to ban it outright. One woman, however, praises these same qualities, comparing Steinbeck to French realist writer Émile Zola in challenging “this squeamishness” and advocating that every American ought to be given a copy. The respondents who snub the novel do so either because its “purpose” subverts its literary merits or because it is communist propaganda, a “deliberate attack on our social order” that is far more dangerous than the common screed because it favorably presents communism without describing it by name. The article concludes that it is bringing much needed attention to the socioeconomic condition of migrants, whatever its literary merits or political philosophy.

Battat, Erin Royston. “Literature, Social Science, and the Development of American Migration Narratives in the Twentieth Century.” Literature Compass 4.3 (2007):539-551. [on file]

Baxter, W.F. “Migratory Labor Camps.” Quartermaster Review 1937 July: 10-15, 74. [on file]

Analyzes the layout, amenities, and administration of migrant labor camps in Imperial Valley. Although each family has its own domicile, whether wood or canvas, the amenities provided for each one vary by function, construction, and population density. Hence, houses have private toilets and showers but tents normally have communal ones that may be easily expanded as necessary. Specialized units such as recreation halls and medical facilities are built for the entire camp. The article also notes that despite their federal funding, camp administration is largely democratic, whereby a “camp committee” consisting of members elected from each residential unit represents the entire camp population and judges all disputes within the camp. The burden of camp maintenance is also democratic in responsibility, requiring all inhabitants to provide money into a general fund or two hours per day of extra work in lieu of payments. Although disputes between growers and migrants have been expected, there are no reports of such that directly involve federal or state camp dwellers.

Beals, Carleton. “Migs: America’s Shantytown on Wheels.” Forum (Jan. 1938): 10-15. [on file]

Sympathetically describes the life of migrants in the San Joaquin Valley and nearby coastal regions. Using inter-views with migrants and personal observations of each stage in their journey westward, the article presents a complete picture of their experience that places it within economic, historical, and cultural contexts while avoiding the tendency in the regional and national press to sensationalize their poverty and cultural differences, although its sympathy for them is not without some ambiguity. It favorably compares them to frontier settlers, wonders at their “unfailing optimism, religious faith, and spirit of mutual aid,” and notes the contempt of local communities in print and by deed for them, yet it also indulges in amateur physiognomy, whereby it claims to discern regional origins and temperaments by appearance, and disparages Pentecostalism for its “sadistic and oversexual” music, further impoverishment of migrants through tithing, and emphasis on faith healing over modern medicine, which the article claims contributed in at least one instance to the spread of tuberculosis and typhoid.

Beebe, Lucius. “The Dress-Suit Okies of California.” American Mercury 52 (May 1941): 533-540. [on file]

Satirically analyzes migrants who insinuate themselves into the fashionable society of California. Coming from throughout the nation, they use their capital and wits to avoid drudgery by transforming themselves into fashionable company for Californian socialites, particularly those associated with the entertainment industry, whereby they may hobnob with stars and live exclusively on the largesse of gifts, parties, and seasonal lodging that comes through such connections. Though witheringly critical of such people, the article has no real sympathy for “scabrous” or “incompetent” migrant laborers, either. It concedes that the public routinely blurs the differences between migrant laborers and migrant social climbers, yet the article does the same by describing both groups as loafers who are determined to live only by what nature and the public provides them and by its satisfaction in observing how many of the latter eventually fall out of high society and must settle into the menial positions held by the former.

Beecroft, Eric and Seymour Janow. “National Policy for Migration: Toward a National Policy for Migration.” Social Forces 16.4 (May 1938):475-492. [on file]

Beeman, Randal. “Dust Bowl Silver Linings: After ‘Grapes’, Times Got Much Easier for Okies Like the Joads.” Bakersfield Californian (Mar. 23, 2014): B7. [on file]

Benson, Jackson J. “An Afternoon and an Introduction.” Journal of Modern Literature 2(2): 194-210.

_____. “To Tom, Who Lived It: John Steinbeck and the Man from Weedpatch.” Journal of Modern Literature 5.2 (April, 1976): 151-210. [on file]

Benson contends that the background for much of Steinbeck’s depiction of migrant life in The Grapes of Wrath, came not only from Collins’ camp reports, but also from the influence and friendship of Tom Collins, to whom the second part of the novel is dedicated. Hired in 1935 by the Resettlement Administration (later called the Farm Security Administration), Collins served as manager of the first migrant camp program in California. By 1936, Collins’ contributions to the camp program were becoming legend. When Steinbeck went to the Division of Information offices for help with a series of articles on the migrants, he was directed to Tom Collins at the Weedpatch camp. Benson credits Collins with the most important contribution to The Grapes of Wrath; that is, “the spirit at the heart of the novel, rather than…the details and color of its surface.”

Bernstein, Michael A. The Great Depression: Delayed Recovery and Economic Change in America, 1929-1939. Cambridge, New York and Melbourne: Cambridge University Press, 1987.

“Big Celebration at Migratory Camp.” Terra Bella News (Tulare County Library, Visalia) (Sept. 5, 1941).

“Board Holds Hearings on Grapes of Wrath Ban.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 28, 1939): 1.

“Board Ponders Health Measure for Labor Camps.” Fresno Bee (Sept. 2, 1937): 1.

Bonnifield, Paul. The Dust Bowl: Men, Dirt and Depression. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1978. Print.

Paul Bonnifield presents a study on the wind erosion and droughts that encompassed Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, and Kansas between 1932 and 1938. Through his own research consisting of interviews, newspaper articles, and state and federal studies, Bonnifield challenges past theories on the dust bowl and argues that the traditional view of life in the dust bowl needs to be reexamined. In his preface, Bonnifield states that the study is an attempt to answer questions about the area’s climate, the causes of the severe wind erosion, the region’s economy, and the role of government agencies. He is sympathetic to the plight of the individuals who withstood the natural disaster and lived through the depression years.  It is his belief that hardworking farmers withstood natural and governmental interference and should be credited with the efforts to save the land, not New Deal projects and policies. Bonnifield takes the stance that dust storms were not new to the area, and that neither the farmer nor World War II wheat demands were to blame for the Dust Bowl.  He also presents evidence to support the argument that many of the dust bowl regions were less affected economically during the Great Depression than many other areas of the nation during the 1930s.  With a critical stance on many of the federal polices being applied in rural areas of America, Bonnifield places blame on many of the New Deal agricultural planners, and contends that the federal government intentionally set out to depopulate the region by deliberately bleeding the land dry to reduce settlers and revert the land back to public use.

“Border Health Tests Loom: Merriam of Opinion Law Permits Such Check on Transients.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 29, 1937): 9. [on file]

Governor Merriam argues that the California State Board of Health has the right to subject migrants (he considers them a “social disease”) coming to California to health examinations and fingerprinting.

“The Border Quarantine.” Los Angeles Times (Aug. 6, 1938): A4. [on file]

Defends the need to maintain a border quarantine against insects and plant diseases. Claims that in 1937, “border patrol officers discovered and confiscated 30, 868 lots of contraband or infested plant material . . . . That California has agricultural production valued at 620,000,000 a year is largely due to the fact that so far pests and plant diseases not native to the Sate have been successfully excluded.”

Boren, Lyle H. “The Grapes of Wrath.” Congressional Record, 76th Cong., 3d Sess., pt. 13, 1940, 139-1940. Reprinted in: A Casebook on The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Agnes McNeill Donohue. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968.

Brady, Amy. “‘They’re Sufferin’ The Same Things We’re Sufferin’: Ideology and Racism in the Federal Theatre Project’s The Sun Rises in the West.” Theatre Survey 56(1) January 2015. [on file]

‘Braunig, E. Paul, Assistant Agricultural Economist. “A Progress Study of Families Living in the Labor Homes of Arvin Migratory Labor Camp, Arvin, California, for the year 1940.” July 1941: 1-15.

Bright, Margaret L. and Dorothy S. Thomas. “Interstate Migration and Intervening Opportunities.” American Sociological Review 6(6) December 1942: 773-83.

Bristol, Horace. “Documenting The Grapes of Wrath.” The Californians (Jan/Feb 1988): 40-47.

Photographer Bristol recounts his travels with John Steinbeck through the Central Valley, interviewing and photographing migrants. The article includes several of Bristol’s photographs.

Brown, Malcolm and Orin Cassmore. “Earnings of Migratory Cotton Pickers in Arizona.” Labor Information Bulletin 6 (November 1939): 10-12. [on file]

Examines the working and living conditions of migrant cotton pickers in Arizona in relation to other states, particularly California. As with their counterparts in California, economic instability pushed and a rising demand for agri-cultural labor pulled migrants to Arizona, although Arizonan growers initially failed to attract many because wages were much lower compared to those offered in California and Texas, and, as in California, migrants usually live in camps provided by growers, which are typically unclean and crowded. Impoverished, they rarely eat meat and fresh vegetables, relying almost exclusively on carbohydrates, and are highly vulnerable to diseases because of such chronic malnutrition, their children being the hardest hit. Since local communities consider them “undesirable” and effectively exclude them from participating in the community, even going so far as to deny them all but “emergency care,” which is transportation to their place of legal residence outside of Arizona, most leave after a season for California, even though the wages there are now comparable.

Buck, Claudia. “’Migrant Mother’: A Central Valley Legacy.” California Journal 30.6 (June 1999): 36-43. [on file]

Florence Thompson, photographer Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother, was the icon for the plight of California’s Central Valley migrant families who struggled to overcome the Dust Bowl and the Depression. Hard work and family were her most enduring legacy that was passed down to her 10 children, 39 grandchildren, 74 great-grandchildren and seven great-great-grandchildren. According to Buck, Thompson symbolized the spirit of “American can-do-ism.”

“Burden of Much Kern Relief is On State Treasury.” Arvin Tiller (January 5, 1939): 2. [on file]

Describes the various unemployment relief and social service programs in Kern County that are paid for by the State Relief Administration (SRA). SRA administrator Walter Chambers  provides the expenditures that Kern County would have had to pay to support relief projects such as, food stamps, jobs with the Works Progress Administration, and certification for the Citizens Conservation Corps.

Burke, Robert E. Olson’s New Deal for California. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1953. Print.

In the first half of the twentieth century California saw only one Democratic state administration, under that of Governor Culbert L. Olson, who was elected in 1938 and defeated in 1942.  Burke presents the story of Olson’s administration and the rise of California’s Democratic Party in the years leading up to his election.  Burke provides important background information on Olson, and describes how Upton Sinclair, labor organizations and other factions played important roles in Olson’s 1938 victory.  As he took office, Olson optimistically believed that a new social and political era would go hand in hand with his governorship, and he promised to set forth principles and policies that were in line with those of the federal New Deal policies.

After his successful election into office, Olson’s administration was quickly marred with frustration, failures, and chaos. Soon after taking office, Governor Olson suffered many personal and administrative setbacks.  He was hospitalized for nervous exhaustion after overworking himself shortly after inauguration, and only four months later his wife passed away.  Olson also inherited problems of high unemployment, health insurance, public ownership, taxation, and out of balance budgets.  Burke explains that Governor Olson was elected because he pledged to make many reforms; however, he was unable to get the legislature to actually pass many of his programs due in part because the reform era was largely over.  Olson was also overly specific in his reform measures, and Burke states, in general, had bad luck.  Burke documents the pressures, feuds, and loyalties that were attached to Olson’s administration and argues that although he was able to make administrative changes and veto some measures, his overall legacy was one of education.  Burke does not believe that Olson had what most would consider a true reform administration.

Burmeister, Eugene. “Early Days in Kern: The Grapes of Wrath.” Arvin Tiller (May 10, 1978): 1.

Butler, Martin. Voices of the Down and Out: The Dust Bowl Migration and the Great Depression in the Songs of Woody Guthrie. Heidelberg: Winter, 2007. Print.

In a study of Woody Guthrie’s songs and legacy, Butler describes the influence, inspiration, and cultural significance that Guthrie’s music had on American culture.  Beginning in the late 1930s, Guthrie wrote and sang hundreds of folk songs, strongly influencing many future generations of singers and songwriters.  Butler’s study aims to show how socioeconomic and political experiences shaped Guthrie’s songs in the 1930s and 40s, and made a cultural impact not only later on, but also during the time he was creating and performing them. Butler takes a New Historicism approach in analyzing Guthrie’s songs, creates connections between the text and its context, and reveals the social and political commentary within Guthrie’s lyrics.

Butler discusses several of Guthrie’s songs and provides explanations and background information for many of the texts that provided Guthrie with inspiration while he composed.  Drawing on his own and many others collective experiences during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression, Guthrie freely, but subtly placed comments on politics, economics, social injustices, religion, and literature within his songs.  Butler finds links in Guthrie’s songs that trace back to ballads, Gold Rush songs, Gene Autry, John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, poems by Walt Whitman, FDR’s inaugural address, dust storm accounts, fascism, sermons, and even Robin Hood. Butler’s connections place Guthrie at the center of American culture at this time, and show how Guthrie was socially aware and engaged in many of the social and political issues of the Dust Bowl and Great Depression eras.

Caldwell, Erskine and Margaret Bourke-White. You Have Seen Their Faces. NY: Modern Age Books, 1937.

“California Farm Labor Problems.” Transactions of the Commonwealth Club of California 12.14 (April 7, 1936): 156-197. [on file]

“California Is Housing Its Aged and Indigent in Large Modern Hospitals.”Wasco News (January 1, 1930): 2.

“California: The Okies.” Time Magazine (Apr. 1, 1940). [on file]

“California Puzzles Over Problem of Oklahoma Dust Bowl Refugees.”
Los Angeles Times (July 20, 1937): 10. [on file]

Briefly reports that 70,000 Dust Bowl migrants have left Oklahoma and that many have settled in the San Joaquin Valley. These migrants face starvation, disease, and have exhausted relief programs.

California State Department of Social Welfare. Division of Child Welfare. “A Study of 132 Families in California Cotton Camps with Reference to Availability of Medical Care.” (October 1937). [on file]

Report cites the industrialization of California agriculture as the reason for the increase in migrants to California. Underhill provides information collected at grower-owned farm labor camps in Merced, Madera, and Fresno Counties, in the neighborhoods of Madera, Los Banos, Dos Palos and Firebaugh. Data includes: family size, income, residence status, previous occupations, relief received by 132 families including Mexican, white, black and Native American. The statistical tables emphasize the health situation of children, including nutrition, infections, hygiene, tuberculosis, congenital defects. Underhill concludes that although considered “migratory,” most in study remained in the county. Many migrant families do not receive relief; non-residents do not receive medical care and are unable to pay for private medical care. Those migrants who are residents often do not take advantage of medical services. Recommends that state and federal agencies should pay for the improvement of the poor conditions under which migrant families live.

California State Legislature. “California’s Farm Labor Problems. Report of the Senate Fact Finding Committee on Labor and Welfare.” Sacramento, CA: Senate of the State of California, 1961. [on file]

Surveys the farm tenancy in the United States from 1880 to 1920. Provides an analysis of the results of the 1920 U.S. census relative to farms classified by tenure. Part I addresses the problem of farm tenure in the United States from two points of view: (1) the status of the farm tenant compared to that of the farm owner; and (2) the status of the farm tenant and that of the farm laborer working for wages. Part II discusses the growth of farm tenancy from 1880 to 1920 in the United States. Contains detailed tables from the U.S. census, figures, and graphs.

“California: No Hobo Utopia.” The Literary Digest (Feb. 15, 1936): 9. [on file]

Reports on the reactions of various newspapers in California, Oregon, Arizona and Nevada to LAPD Chief James E. Davis’ ordering his police officers to patrol California’s borders and arrest “all persons who have no definite purpose for entering the State, and are without visible means of support.” The Los Angeles Times apparently supported Davis’ order claiming that these “imported criminals, radicals and troublemakers” have contributed to a $70,000,000 deficit. Yet, Stephen O’Donnell of the Los Angeles Evening News and the Nevada State Journal insisted that the Davis “frontier guard violates every principle that Americans hold dear.” And, according to the Arizona Republic, the exclusion policy will have a tremendous impact on Arizona: “There is no other intermountain or western state which will suffer so much…”

“California Replies to Steinbeck.” Business Week (May 11, 1940): 17.

California’s State Chamber of Commerce offers a recommendation to solve California’s migrant farm labor problem. Chief among Chamber report suggestions: (1) federal relief programs should be increased in states of out-migration, and local and state support should be encouraged by federal matching grants; (2) FSA camps should be continued as an emergency measure; (3) farmers must develop permanent housing facilities on their own land; and (4) state Employment Service should be re-organized to serve California’s needs more adequately.

California State Chamber of Commerce. “Migrants: A National Problem and Its Impact on California.” (May 1940). [excerpt on file]

California State Department of Public Health. “The Health of Transient and Migratory Laborers in California.” Weekly Bulletin (California State Department of Public Health 16.32 (Sept. 4, 1937): 125-31. [on file] SEE ALSO BELOW: Dickie, Walter M.

_____. “Migration and Communicable Diseases.” Weekly Bulletin 17.19 (June 4, 1938):73-74. [on file]

California State Department of Public Health. Bureau of Child Hygiene. “A Study of the Health of 1,000 Children of Migratory Agricultural Laborers in California.” Report of the Migratory Demonstration, July, 1936, 1937. Sacramento, CA, 1937. [on file]

California State Department of Public Health. “Trailing Child and Maternal Health into California Migrant Agricultural Camps.” Report of the Second Year of the Migratory Demonstration, July 1937-June 1938.” Sacramento, CA, 1938. [on file]

California State Relief Administration. “Migratory Labor in California.” Sacramento: State of California, 1936. [excerpt on file]

Reports on the number of individuals who arrived in California by car from drought states during June through December 1935. Provides statistics of refugees by race and state of origin. Information based on data provided by Paul S. Taylor.

_____. “Stranded: History of a Farm Family in Search of a Home.” In Migratory Labor in California.” Sacramento, CA: State of California, 1936. 157-170. [on file]

_____. “Transients in California.” Sacramento, CA: State Relief Administration of California, 1937. [on file]

Surveys the size and condition of the transient population in California by investigating its presence in the largest cities and presents proposals for its care by public agencies. It finds that transients are usually those displaced by economic change such as natural disasters and mechanization and that the continued public neglect of their poverty poses a substantial threat to the state. It therefore urges renewed requests for federal aid, expansion of county assistance to improve their health and employment, and greater uniformity in settlement laws to allow them a fairer chance at establishing residency.

California State University, Bakersfield. California Odyssey: The 1930s Migration to the Southern San Joaquin Valley. [Oral history interviews] 1980.

Included in Archive are fifty-seven oral interviews by individuals who migrated to California’s Central Valley. The interviews were conducted in the early 1980s. The archive is supplemented by photographs taken by FSA photographers (e.g., Dorothea Lange), a research bibliography, and school activities.

“Californians Ask Migration Study: Entire [California] House Delegation Backs Petition for a Hearing on Tolan Resolution.” New York Times (Mar. 8, 1940):26. [on file]

Campbell, Ann P. “Reports from Weedpatch, California: The Records of the Farm Security Administration.” Agricultural History 48.3 (July 1974):402-403. [on file]

Briefly discusses the September 5, 1936 weekly report  by Tom Collins, manager of the Arvin Migratory Labor Camp in Kern County, California to the regional headquarters of the Resettlement Administration in San Francisco.  Includes a sharecropper’s lament, “Eleven Cent Cotton and Forty Cent Meat,” summary of camp residents  characteristics [e.g., population count and illnesses reported], relations between camp residents, farmers, and townspeople, and  John Steinbeck’s visit to the camp.

Cambell, Ronald. “Past Deadline.” Bakersfield Californian (October 13, 1979): 1. [on file]

“Camp Role as Cotton Pioneer Recalled.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 4, 1975): 9-10. [on file]

Cannon, Brian. “Keep on A-Goin’: Life and Social Interaction in a New Deal Farm Labor Camp.” Agricultural History 70 (Winter 1966): 1-32. [on file]

Surveys everyday life and social relations in Arvin’s Migratory Labor Camp near Bakersfield, California, one of eighteen camps in California that the Farm Security Administration was operating for migrant workers in 1940.

_____. “Keeping Their Instructions Straight: Implementing the Rural Resettlement Program in the West.” Agricultural History 70.2 (Spring 1966): 251-67.

Details the tasks resettlement developers performed in carving farms out of forests, bogs, and grasslands in the mountainous West. Faced with opposition from Congress and politically conservative groups like the American Farm Bureau Federation, Cannon discusses the various bureaucratic and legal hurdles the Resettlement Administration (RA) and its successor, the Farm Security Administration (FSA), faced in acquiring and rapidly developing land for its resettlement programs. Among the reasons for its demise, Cannon cites legal difficulties, the magnitude of land development work, dependence upon other federal agencies, lack of coordination within the resettlement agencies, reliance upon inexperienced relief labor, and the difficulty of adapting to environmental conditions.

Canter, Ester A. “California ‘Renovates’ the Dust Bowler.” Hygeia 18.5 (May 1940): 420-23. [on file]

Camp nurse’s attempt to educate “dust bowlers” about personal hygiene and preventative medicine as she contends with home remedies and superstitution. For many of the “dust bowlers,” life in the migratory labor camp was an improvement over the poverty and starvation they experienced since leaving their farms in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas. Condescending article portraying the ignorance of migrants toward health care and nutrition. Reflects the prevailing view of migrants as shiftless and illiterate.

“Care of Transients this Winter to be Along Broader Lines.” Shafter Progress (September 1, 1933): 1.

Carlson, Oliver. “Up From the Dust.” U.S.A.: The Magazine of American Affairs (Aug.1952): 19 or 7. [illed]

Caughey, John Walton. “Current Discussion of California’s Migrant Labor Problem.” Pacific Historical Review 8.3 (1939): 347-54.

Chambers, Clarke. California Farm Organizations: A Historical Study of the Grange, the Farm Bureau, and the Associated Farmers, 1929-1941. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1952. [on file]

Contains source material for the California Farm Bureau Federation, the California State Grange, The Associated Farmers of California, and personal interviews with persons active in farm politics during the 1930s. Includes references to newspapers and periodicals that were a valuable source of political views.

Churchill, Douglas W. “Exile From the Dust: They Create a Grave Problem for California.” New York Times Magazine (Feb. 13, 1938). [on file]

“Chief Davis Gets Praise; Border’s Patrol Complimented; Auto Clubs in Other States Write Endorsements and Pledge Cooperation.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 27, 1936): A3. [on file]

Reports that Los Angeles Chief of Police James Davis’ border patrol in California has been successful in decreasing the number of “indigent migrants” within the state.  Davis has requested that automobile clubs west of the Mississippi should discourage club members from picking up hitch-hikers.

“Children in the Depression.” New Republic (Dec. 21, 1932): 149. [on file]

“Citizens Group to Renew Its Campaign.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 23, 1939): front page. [on file]

“City Police Patrols Halt 1000 at State’s Borders; Anti-Vagrant Drive Ruled Valid as Epic Councilman Asks End; Round Nets 308 Felons.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 14, 1936): 1, 3. [on file]

Reports that over a thousand transients have been refused entrance into California by the Los Angeles police border patrol. As a result, border crime in Los Angeles has decreased by twenty-five percent. City Attorney [Chesebro] in opposition to members of the City Council has ruled the border patrol legal.

Clawson, Marion. “What It Means to be a Californian.” California Historical Society Quarterly 24.2 (June 1945): 139-61. [on file]

Statistically analyzes migration to California from 1870 to 1945 to derive essential facts about its character. Using federal census data, the study argues that factors other than economic ones such as “pleasure-seeking” affect the decision to migrate, which might in part explain its conclusions on the composition of the state population, which shows that migration to California has steadily increased over the past seventy years, making two out of every three people living in California born outside of the state. Foreign migration notwithstanding, the typical migrants are young adults from states west of the Mississippi River, especially Oklahoma, Texas, and Arkansas during the 1930s, and have skewed the state age distribution abnormally young compared to the national distribution, which the study takes as a warning that public infrastructure involving children may soon become overburdened. While migrants are predominantly white, there is a growing population of black migrants as well, yet Mexicans, Chinese, and Japanese are declining, the latter two undoubtedly because of World War II.

Coen, Chere. “Roots Run Deep: Bakersfield Creation Becomes Museum Dedicated to Bakersfield Sound Musicians.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 24, 2003): D1-D2. [on file]

“College Professor Hopes to Fill Archives With Okie History.” Fresno Bee (Dec. 4, 1977): 1.

Collins, Henry Hill. America’s Own Refugees: Our 4,000,000 Homeless Migrants. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University, 1941.

Collins’ social and economic study of migrants (1930-1941) is based largely on the congressional investigation of the conditions of the migratory worker during 1940-1941. [Note: the formal citation for the congressional investigation is: United States Congress. House. Select Committee to Investigate the Interstate Migration of Destitute Citizens. Interstate Migration. Hearings before the Select Committee to Investigate the Interstate Migration of Destitute Citizens, House of Representatives, on H. Res. 63 and H. Res. 491, 76th Cong., 3rd Sess., 1940-1941. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1941.

Collins, Geneva. “’Grapes’ Propaganda? Yes, Same as ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’.” Stockton Record (April 23, 1989): A, 17. [on file]

Collins, Thomas A. “From Bringin’ in the Sheaves.” Journal of Modern Literature (Apr. 1976): 211-32.

“Colored Folk make Please for Share of Labor.” Shafter Progress (May 10, 1935): 3.

Colvin, Richard Lee. “Dust Bowl Legacy.” Los Angeles Times Magazine (March 26, 1989): 8-17, 37-38. [on file]

Presents a series of oral family histories of the migrant experience that focus on how each family coped with its hardships. Using The Grapes of Wrath as a springboard for investigation, the article shows that not every migrant family could tolerate the stigma of being “Okies,” causing one to leave California soon after arriving, whereas another, which not only endured but prospered, failed to pass their success on to their sons, one dying by a drugs overdose and another convicted for soliciting the murder of his parents. Others allowed their hardship to shape their view of life and the world for the better. One man came to believe that diligence leads to success, although his success was less than he had expected for his effort, while another man prospered greatly by heeding the persistence of his mother. Finally, another who did well in business remembers the kindness and example of a local educator in easing the hardship of migrant children.

Commonwealth Club of California. “California Farm Labor Problems.” Transactions of the Commonwealth Club of California 30, no. 5 (April 7, 1936): 153-196. [on file]

Presents analyses by growers, migrants, migrant organizers on the welfare and efforts of migrants to organize. Growers are divided on whether they should be obliged to provide housing and other amenities to migrants. Small farmers argue that their means are too little to do so, whereas larger farmers, who consider doing so as a responsibility appropriate to their size, point out that most already do so. Both groups, however, prefer local governance of migrant camps to federal intervention and believe that communist agitators bully migrants into striking and attendant violence. Migrants and migrant organizers, while pleased with federal aid on their behalf, are less amiable towards growers, who instigate violence against migrants as local law enforcement turns a blind eye or even assists in the beatings, and insist that wages and working conditions, not communists, are not behind their actions. Moreover, they feel that peaceful collective bargaining must come before a solution may be achieved.

“Communist Farm Agitator Hit By Agriculturalist.” Shafter Press (May 2, 1935): 2.

“Communist Organizers Lillian Monroe and Lillian Dunn Incite Followers to Violence–Witness Says Men Had Clubs Concealed Under Coats and Food Thrown Away by Rioters.” Visalia Times-Delta (March 23, 1934). [on file]

See below related article by Dale Maharidge. [Note: Lillian Dunn discusses this event in her interview. For text and audio of her interview, go to California State University, Bakersfield. California Odyssey: The 1930s Migration to the Southern San Joaquin Valley. [Oral History Interviews & Photographs] 1980.

“Community Chest Records Appeals from Needy People.” Wasco News (Feb. 21, 1930): 2.

Congress Must Solve the Migrant Problem.” Fresno Bee (Oc.r 23, 1940): 1.

“Cotton Camps Are Given Food: Capital Is Picketed at Phoenix by Transient Labor Groups.” Arizona Daily Star March 23 1938: np. [on file] Cotton pickers demonstration in Phoenix, Arizona in protest over their living conditions. Spokesman for the group claimed some 2,000 persons were “lured to Arizona by advertisements” promising work only to find themselves living in squalor outside the city limits.

Corrigan, Emmett. “A Noted Working Mother.” Modesto Bee (Nov. 4, 1979): A12. [on file]

See below, accompanying article by William Kane.

“Cost to Anchor Migrants Gains: More Spent to Keep Destitute Away from California, F.S.A. Says.” Los Angeles Times (Mar. 24, 1940):5. [on file]

“Cotton Camps Are Given Food: Capital Is Picketed at Phoenix by Transient Labor Groups.” Arizona Daily Star (March 23 1938). [on file]

Cotton pickers demonstration in Phoenix, Arizona in protest over their living conditions. Spokesman for the group claimed some 2,000 persons were “lured to Arizona by advertisements” promising work only to find themselves living in squalor outside the city limits.

“Cotton Picker Relief Delayed.” Arizona Daily Star (Mar. 27, 1938). [on file]

“Cotton Pickers Ask Conference.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 23, 1939): 1.

“Cotton Pickers Get $50,000 Relief Fund.” Arizona Republic (Mar. 25, 1938). [on file]

“Cotton Pickers March With CIO Organizers.” Arizona Republic (Mar. 23, 1938). [on file]

“Cotton Pickers Wanted Near Phoenix.” Daily Oklahoman (Oklahoma City) (Sept. 23, 1937): 10. [on file]

“Cotton Pickers Will Get Food.” Arizona Daily Star, (Mar. 24 1938): 1EOA. [on file]

Briefly reports on the delivery of food aid by state and county authorities to camps west of Phoenix after a series of protests by cotton pickers before state relief offices to draw public attention to their poverty. Because state law permits such relief to non-residents only in a crisis, the authorities stress that the aid is temporary and, while promising to send case workers to investigate the camps, are considering plans to return the pickers to their states of residence.

“If there is no mob action and everyone goes home,” declared Governor Stanford to the organizers of the Committee for Industrial Organization, he would see to it that the destitute pea pickers residing in the squalid camps west of Phoenix would receive aid. However, only six case workers would be assigned to assess the needs of the families. “It is the best we can do,” said the secretary of the Maricopa County Board of Social Security and Welfare. “And to do that much, we will be taking food out of the mouths of Arizona residents.” Governor Stanford intends to “evolve a plan” by which to return the pea pickers to their home states.

“County Supervisors Visit Migratory School at Arvin.” Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 21, 1943): page 10, 7-8. [on file]

Cowley, Malcolm. “American Tragedy.” The New Republic. (May 3, 1939): 382-83.

_____. “In the Streets, Grass and Breadlines Grew: A Depression Memoir.” Los Angeles Times (Oct. 28, 1979): Part 5; 1, 6.

Creisler, Lilian. “Little Oklahoma: A Study of the Social and Economic Adjustment of Refugees in the Beard Tract, Modesto, Stanislaus County, California during the period July 1936 to May 1939.” Master’s Thesis. Berkeley: University of California, 1940. [on file]

Sociological study of “Little Oklahoma” that includes supporting materials, surveys, along with supplementary tables. Author concludes that these refugees succeeded because they ceased to be migrants and instead became part of an established group. Through their hard work they contributed to the community as “substantial and valuable members of society.”

Crist, Kenneth. “Career Men—In Relief.” Los Angeles Times Magazine (May 14, 1939):4,5, 81. [on file]

Cross, William T. and Dorothy E. Cross. New Comers and Nomads in California. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press, 1937. [on file]

Culley, John J. and Peter Peterson. “Hard Times on the High Plains: FSA Photography During the 1930s.” Panhandle-Plains Historical Review 52 (1979): 15-37. [on file]

Photography by Roy Emerson Stryker for the Resettlement Association (renamed the Farm Security Administration in 1937) within the Department of the Interior. As a record of their financial assistance during the 1930s, Stryker documented rural poverty for the regional FSA office in Amarillo, Texas.

Cunningham, Charles. “Rethinking the Politics of the Grapes of Wrath.” Cultural Logic 5 (2002). Web. 18 June 2014. [on file]

Argues that The Grapes of Wrath represents an attempt to reconcile “radical class politics,” represented by the novel’s critique of American capitalism, and “American racial nationalism,” which it claims is reflected in the novel’s inherent bias towards white migrants, and that from this springs an appeal for an active “solidarity” between the white middle class and the white underclass pouring into California.

Currie, J.H. “Labor Camps in the San Joaquin.” Daily Telegram (Apr. 13, 1937). [on file]

Curtis, James C. “Dorothea Lange, Migrant Mother, and the Culture of the Great Depression.” Winterthur Portfolio 21.1 (Spring 1986): 1-20. [on file]

Explores the creation and symbolism of Lange’s celebrated 1936 photograph within the context of her professional work, her often tumultuous life, and the sensibilities of the Depression-era American public. The photograph, although produced during an unplanned shoot, was itself not a spontaneous snapshot, as is often believed, but one of a series of photographs of Florence Thompson chosen and to some extent manipulated — Lange intentionally omitted Thompson’s name, husband, and teenaged daughter — to maximize sympathy for migrant life with the public.

Daniel, Cletus. Bitter Harvest: California Farm Worker, 1880-1930. Ithaca: Cornell University, 1981. Print.

Cletus Daniel introduces Bitter Harvest as a history of the powerlessness of men, women, and children who toiled in California fields during the early part of the twentieth-century.  Daniel begins with an explanation of the erosion of agrarian idealism across the nation, and explains why California’s colonial past with Mexico and Spain created a pattern of large landholdings, separating it from other states in America that often idealized the small, family farm. While laborers on small-scale farms worked long and hard hours, Daniel argues they were never looked upon as a disadvantaged group until they became exploited on larger, corporate farms designed to create wealth upon the backbreaking labor of its workers.  Class and status were not clearly separated between farmer and laborer on small farms because they often worked, ate, and slept in the same areas.  There was little to distinguish the two in lifestyle.  In contrast, large-scale commercial farming enterprises encouraged and even promoted clear lines of landowner and land worker, which were impenetrable and permanent.  Growers encouraged a master-servant relationship with its laborers and dealt harshly with any talk of unionism.

Daniel examines the Communist Party’s impact on farm worker unionization in the early 1930s, and analyzes the efforts of workers to organize and strike for better wages and working conditions.  Daniel explains the grower’s held too much political and economic power for farm worker organizations to survive, let alone succeed.  He argues the workers were just as poor and uprooted after the New Deal reforms as they had been prior, but maintains that the cause of their powerlessness had to be shared among progressive and New Deal reformers, powerful landowners, and even their own ineptitude.

Darnton, Byron. “Arizona Cotton-Growing Scheme Abets Migration to California: Lessees of State Land Reap Big Profits and Get Federal Benefits but, Season Over, Do Nothing About Pickers Lured [second in series].” New York Times (Mar. 5, 1940):25. [on file]

_____.“Farming on Factory Scale Balks Migrants in Search of Living Wage: Employer-Growers in California’s Vast and Varied Industry Control Labor Policies Amid Endless Conflict [fifth in series].” New York Times (Mar. 8, 1940): 23, 26.

_____. “Migrants’ Dream of Owning Land Makes Them a Conservative Lot: California Squatters, Whether Workers of Supplicants, Are Held So Individualistic That They Don’t Invite Unionizing [third in a series].” New York Times (Mar. 6, 1940): 25. [on file]

Davenport, Walter. “California, Here We Come.” Collier’s (Aug. 10,1935): 10-11, 47-49. [on file]

Wryly reports on the arrival of migrants from across the country duped into coming to California by stories of its limitless generosity. Loading themselves and their few possessions into rickety vehicles that rarely survive the journey, they come, individually and in families, having heard that the state offers a pension plan to anyone over twenty, that it offers forty acres and a house to every white Protestant family, that it subsidizes anyone who grows oranges, that there are productive gold mines, and other such promises told or sold second-hand during their journey westward. Though the article spares some attention to their shabbiness and the resentment of many residents for their presence and publicly funded welfare, especially when the state treasury is all but empty, its interest remains with their astounding gullibility, documenting how their credulity lends their erstwhile support to any radical politician or utopian sect that can promise a remedy for their desperation.

“Davis Seeks State Aid in Drive on Indigents.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 16, 1936): A1. [on file]

Reports on the border patrol formed by Los Angeles Chief of Police James Davis, which he claims is responsible for the decrease of crime within Los Angeles. Davis negatively portrays migrants as “indigents” coming into California with the intention to commit crime and sponge off the state. Davis also proposes a comprehensive State-wide border patrol plan and suggests that Governor  Merriam call a conference in which law enforcement agencies throughout the State can meet and develop a solution to the “indigent” problem.

“Davis Urges Patrol Aid; Wants Stricter Vagrant Curb.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 20, 1936): 113. [on file]

Dawe, D. Theodore. “Migratory Children.” Sierra Educational News (Sept. 12, 1938): 12, 38. [on file]

Analyzes the academic performance of migrant children compared to resident children using IQ and reading tests. At the suggestion of Kern County Superintendent of Schools Herbert L. Healy, and undoubtedly in response to vocal concerns in the popular press regarding an apparent achievement gap between migrant and resident children, this study sampled one-seventh of all students in the county, using several standardized tests of reading comprehension and intelligence, to determine whether such a gap exists and, if so, its degree. It concludes that there is a gap. Migrants scored from eight to sixteen points less than their peers in mean IQ and their reading achievement scores steadily declined with the age sampled, indicating that they seem to have been promoted to each grade based on physical maturity more than academic readiness. The study offers no explanation for the gap but notes that a “guidance program” is attempting to close it.

“Democratic Process is Beginning to Function.” Fresno Bee (Sept. 30, 1940): 1.

“Depleting Funds to Help Migrant Workers.” Chandler Arizonan (Mar. 11, 1938): 1.

“Destitute Are Warned.” Berkeley Gazette (July 27, 1937): Sec. 2; 1, 5.

Dickie, Walter M. “Health of the Migrant.” Weekly Bulletin California State Department of Public Health 17 (June 18, 1938): 81-7.

Examines the health of white migrants in California, focusing on their housing, diet, hygiene, and morbidity. Al-though rising wages and crop prices are gradually increasing material prosperity among the approximately 80,000 migrants in the state, most of them remain poorly housed, malnourished, dirty, and vulnerable to diseases such as tuberculosis and typhoid fever, which the article blames on their ignorance of “how to live properly” regarding diet and hygiene as well as their “inherent laziness.” Their malnutrition results from a traditional diet of fried and salted foods that has only recently become more varied through an increased familiarity with the range of produce available to them, while a similar ignorance regarding modern plumbing contributes to their poor hygiene, which the article demonstrates by how they often despoil the housing provided for them by growers “within a week after occupancy.” It recommends that the state continue the immunization of migrants against communicable disease and commit itself to educating them in the essentials of nutrition and personal hygiene to improve their living standards and to protect public health.

_____. “Health of the Migrant.” California State Department of Health Weekly Bulletin 17, no. 21 (June 18, 1938): 81-83, 86-87.

Examines the health of white migrants entering and residing in California and describes the efforts of state and federal agencies to improve it. Using historical and statistical data gathered by various state and federal studies, it shows that malnutrition and poor sanitation, which it attributes to inadequate diets and housing, are their commonest health problems and that state and federal agencies, while initially overwhelmed by the number and indigence of migrants, are steadily improving their health through donations of food, mobile clinics, nutritional education, more and better housing, and subsidized health care. Although the article is sympathetic to their condition and praises government intervention on their behalf, it nonetheless seems to have a residual unease for their presence as shown by its occasional description of them as an “army,” a “horde,” and an “invasion” in addition to a slight disdain for their intelligence in supposing them wholly ignorant of balanced nutrition because of their “heritage” of inadequate diets.

_____. “Migration and Communicable Diseases.” Weekly Bulletin. California State Department of Health Weekly Bulletin 17, no. 19 (June 4, 1938): 73-74.

Presents a brief history of communicable disease in California as carried by various migrant groups. While communicable diseases such as tuberculosis and dysentery have been in California since Spanish colonizers introduced them in the sixteenth century, recurring epidemics began in the mid-nineteenth century following the discovery of gold and the building of the transcontinental railroad, which expanded the population and, so the article argues, introduced new diseases through foreign migrants. It explicitly equates the spread of disease with the entry of foreign migrants, especially Mexican migrants, who it claims have little or no resistance to tuberculosis, are the most frequent carriers of syphilis, and constitute one-third of those on public assistance in Los Angeles despite numbering only one-twentieth of its population. It also notes in passing that the large number of “under-privileged” white mi-grants arriving in California is potentially another disease vector and recommends that state authorities continue mandatory immunization and nutritional education to improve their health, although no similar provisions are mentioned for non-white migrants.

Dickstein, Morris. “Steinbeck and the Great Depression.” South Atlantic Quarterly 103.1 (Winter 2004): 111-131. [on file]

Analyzes how the Great Depression influenced Steinbeck’s literary technique, noting how his output during the 1930s had its roots in experience he gained as a reporter. These experiences shaped his characterization of the marginalized, gradually changing it from detached observation to personal identification, as well as his interest in social justice, which, despite claims to contrary by his fierce critics, was never rooted in Communist ideology but in emotion and an intense desire to do right by the migrants’ suffering.

“Did Like All the Other Okies.” Arvin Tiller (July 27, 1977).

Dismissal of Hanford Case Will Be Asked.” Fresno Bee (Nov. 24, 1941): 1.

Dmitri, Ivan. “No Jobs in California.” Saturday Evening Post (Nov. 12, 1938). [on file]

Evaluates the s Dust Bowl refugee problem in California. Corporate agriculture in the San Joaquin Valley has transitioned from migratory “fruit tramp” laborers ( (Mexicans, Filipinos, and Japanese) to “transient” labor (Dust Bowl migrants). Examines squatter communities and Farm Security Administration migratory-labor camps.

“Domestic Problem.” Palm Beach Post (Sept. 1, 1939): 4. [on file]

Douglas, Katherine. “West Coast Inquiry.” Survey Graphic XXIX (April 1940): 228.

Downie, Don. “Aviation Is Kid Stuff.” Flying Sportsman (Sept. 1947): 18-20, 46. [on file]

Reports that the Sunset Senior Elementary School near Arvin, California, has a working C-46 transport plane that was bought by Peter Bancroft (District School Superintendent). Explains that the plane serves as a way to instruct students about aviation. Claims the aviation program at Sunset School has resulted in an increase in student attendance and a decrease in juvenile delinquency.

“Drop Shown in Vagrancy.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 15, 1936): A1. [on file]

“Drought Refugee and Labor Migration to California in 1936.” Monthly Labor Review (Dec. 1937).

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. “One or Two Things I Know About Us: Rethinking the Image and Role of ‘Okies’.” Monthly Review (July-Aug. 2002): 13-28. [on file]

Examines the nature of “Okie” identity and its political manipulation in a brief revisionist history of their experience. Beginning in the early seventeenth century with the Ulster Scots, the putative ancestors of the “Okies,” and continuing to the present, it argues that the foundation of “Okie” identity is a “matrix of stories,” particularly those which emphasize their ancestral role as white yeoman settlers and frontiersmen, that let them believe themselves to be the truly indigenous people of America. The study further argues that this identity, which has been useful since the late 1960s for political conservatives who appeal to traditional white supremacy and defense of the nation, especially against decadence, also served liberal interests to great effect in the 1900s and 1930s, which appealed to the elements of Jeffersonian agrarianism in its mythos, and, oddly enough, to its white identity, when Steinbeck cited their “blood” as the key to their survival of the Dust Bowl.

_____. Red Dirt: Growing Up Okie. New York: Verso, 1997. Print.

Dunbar-Ortiz recollects her early years, from 1938 to 1960, growing up in rural Oklahoma and examines the personal, family, and community events that shaped her childhood and young adult years. As the youngest of four, Dunbar-Ortiz was born to a down-on-their luck, sharecropping family.  The Great Depression created difficulties for her family in the years prior to her birth; however, her father insisted they belonged with the land and would not contemplate relocating the family west despite the opportunity and stability they may have found. Self-described as “poor white trash,” Dunbar-Ortiz struggled alongside her family to regain what her father believed was taken from them during the economic crisis, and recounts the struggles and difficulties of everyday life for a rural family in poverty.

Dunbar-Ortiz vividly recalls her early church life, visiting the state fair, riding her bicycle, going to concerts, and getting her first job, but also describes many difficult memories she has such as the death of her friend, the rape of another, and the bitterly strained relationship between her mother and father.  Despite the sense of nostalgia with which the book is written, there are dark points in which Dunbar-Ortiz describes the verbal and physical abuse she endured at the hands of her alcoholic mother.  The narrative also contemplates class and racial conflicts and stereotypes that were commonly held in rural white cultures, and the difficulties of being open-minded within small-minded communities. As she grows into adulthood and attends college, Dunbar-Ortiz continues to struggle with her self-worth, desperate to hide the shame of her family and childhood from those around her who could not comprehend the events of her life.  Though ending in the year 1960, there is an epilogue provided which shares even more insights into the author’s move to California and coming to terms with her past.

Duncan, Otis Durant. “Oklahoma’s Farm Population.” Bulletin No. B-379. Stillwater, Ok: Oklahoma A&M College. Agricultural Experiment Station, 1952. [on file]

Summarizes changes in Oklahoma’s farm population from 1900 through 1950.

Dunn, Geoffrey. “Photographic License: The Story of Florence Owens Thompson-Dorothea Lange’s ‘Migrant Mother’–and How Her Famous Portrait Haunted Her for a Lifetime.” Santa Clara Valley Weekly Newspaper (Jan. 19-25, 1995): 20-24 [on file]

Dunn, Larry, and Kathy Durham, eds. The Grapes of Wrath in Kern County. Bakersfield: Bakersfield College, 1982.

Collects articles and brief oral histories written by students for a course at Bakersfield College that focus on aspects of The Grapes of Wrath such as its historical significance, its religious themes, and, most notably, its removal from local schools and libraries by the Kern County Board of Supervisors in August 1939, ostensibly for obscenity and defamation of local farmers.

Durbin, William. The Journal of C. J. Jackson: A Dust Bowl Migrant, Oklahoma to California, 1935. New York: Scholastic, 2002.

Targeted to grades four through seven. Tells the story of a fictional teen whose family must abandon their farm in Oklahoma and journey to California in search of a new life, living through the same adversity that thousands of fellow “Okies” experienced. Written for a middle school audience, the novel also includes an historical note and captioned black and white photographs.

“Dust Bowl Invasion of California Stirs Call for L.A. Parley.” Berkeley Gazette (July 10, 1937): 1. [on file]

“Dust Bowl Migrants.” Visalia Times Delta (Sept. 1, 1938): 10. [on file]

“Dust Bowl Refugee Survey Finds SJR Camps Squalor-Ridden.” Los Angeles Times (July 21, 1937): 10.

“Dust Bowl Update.” Life (Aug. 1979): 9-12.

Reproduces Dorothea Lange’s iconic ‘migrant mother’ image as she was at the age of thirty-two and Bill Ganzel’s portrait of her, aged 79, with three of her daughters.

Dustbowlers Worry California.” Business Week (Sept. 24, 1938): 33-4. [on file]

Apparently the business community worries that the influx of dustbowlers will influence the outcome of California’s $30-Every-Thursday initiative. Approximately 66,000 of the 165,000 dustbowl migrants are eligible to vote. Voter registration rose 27% in the five San Joaquin counties, most of whom were registered Democrats. Business Week believes that “With relief in mind, the newcomers register [to vote] as soon as possible.” To discourage these “destitute hordes” from coming to California, the Kern County based California Citizens Association is petitioning Congress to strongly encourage: the federal government to send back “idle dustbowlers” to their home communities; to warn potential migrants that they will not receive relief in California; the FSA to refrain from doling out “immediate relief to any and all families that ask for it.” Skeptics of the petition advocate crop diversification as well as mandating the FSA to continue providing schooling, food and health care but to stop providing cash so as to prevent newcomers from sending money back home to “finance further migration.”

Dyck, Mary Knackstedt, and Pamela Riney-Kehrberg. Waiting on the Bounty: The Dust Bowl Diary of Mary Knackstedt Dyck. Iowa City: University of Iowa Press, 1999. Print.

Mary Knackstedt Dyck’s extensive journal collection provides a rare look into a farmwoman’s life and duties during a turbulent time period in American farming. Her journals span the years from 1936 to her death in 1955; however, editor Riney-Kehrberg has selected a portion of Dyck’s personal diary entries from 1936 to 1941 for publication in this volume. In the first chapter, Riney-Kehrberg provides important background information and commentary, and places Dyck’s diary entries into the historical context of the time. She introduces Mary Dyck to the reader and explains details about her background, children, community, and economic status.  The rest of the diary follows chronologically, briefly interrupted in the middle by a series of photographs of the Dyck’s, Kansas, and the family farm.

Dyck’s diary entries are an impressive, detailed account of one woman’s experiences as a farmer, mother, and wife in southwestern Kansas.  Her diary gives a rare glimpse into the every day activities involved in farm life, and reveals intimate details of the hardships that burdened farm families during the turbulent years of the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression.  Prior to the 1930s, Dyck and her husband, a Mennonite farmer, had enjoyed relative prosperity on their farm.  When the dust storms and winds hit the region, Dyck observed the rural depopulation of the area and lamented the loss of friends and family who chose to look for employment elsewhere.  Dyck alleviates her loneliness with a very strong attachment to the radio and the stories that were played day-to-day. Riney-Kehrberg comments that the radio was incredibly important to people in rural areas because it allowed them a portal into the wider world with which they rarely came into contact. Dyck and her husband chose to stay in Kansas, and were eventually able to take advantage of the agricultural boom that followed the Depression and regain financial stability.

Ebel, Jonathan H. “In Every Cup of Bitterness, Sweetness: California Christianity in the Great Depression.” Church History 80.3 (Sept. 2011): 590-599. [on file]

“Edwards v. People of the State of California.” Supreme Court Reporter (Nov. 24, 1941); 314 U.S. 160 (62 SC 164).

Appeal from the Superior Court of the State of California in and for the County of Yuba. Fred F. Edwards was convicted of violating St.Cal.1937, p. 1406, s 2615, making it a misdemeanor for a person to bring or assist in bringing into state any indigent person who was not a resident of the state, knowing him to be an indigent person, and from a judgment of the Superior Court of California affirming the conviction, Fred F. Edwards appeals. Reversed.

“800,000 Now on New Deal Rolls.” Shafter Press (Jan. 23, 1935):1.

“1800 Ragged Harvesters Get First Square Meal.” San Francisco News (Mar. 11, 1936): 3. [on file]

Reports that 1800 pea harvesters were stranded in Cuyama, California due to blighted crops, which left the harvesters without work or money. The stranded migrants received food from the federal government. Article appears with iconic Migrant Mother photograph by Dorothea Lange. See related articles in San Francisco News: “What Does the New Deal Mean for This Mother and Her Child?” (11 Mar. 1936):3, “Food Rushed to Starving Farm Colony,” (10 Mar. 1936):3, “Ragged, Hungry, Broke, Harvest Workers Live in Squalor [sic],” (10 Mar. 1936):3. Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother photos accompany articles.

Eichengreen, Barry. “Did International Economic Forces Cause the Great Depression?” University of California at Berkeley Working Paper in Economics: 8751 (Sept. 1987).

Etulian, Richard W., reviewer. “Dust Bowl Migrants in the American Imagination (Book Review).” Agricultural History 72:3 (1998): 632-3.

According to Etulian, Charles Shindo’s book attempts to show how a few liberals like Dorothea Lange made the experience of the Dust Bowl migrants in California during the 1930s an enduring symbol of the Great Depression.

Evans, Mercer G. “Housing For Migratory Agricultural Workers.” Public Welfare News 6 (June 1939): 2-4. [on file]

As Acting Director of the Personnel and Labor Relations Division of the FSA, Evans discusses the factors which prompted the FSA to provide decent living conditions for the migrant farms workers living in California in mid-1930s.

____. “The Migration of Farm Labor.” Washington, D.C.: U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. Farm Security Administration, 1939. [on file]

“Exiles in the Dust: They Create a Grave Problem for California.” New York Times Magazine (Mar. 13, 1938): 9, 20. [on file]

“Extra Teachers Employed for Migratory Pupils.” Wasco News (Oct. 9, 1931): 6.

“Factories in the Field.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 11, 1939): 1.

“Farm Bureau Group Hears Advantages Clean Camps for Migratory Labor.”Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 26, 1937): 5.

“Farm Lands Flooded.” Yuma Daily Sun (Yuma Arizona Sentinel) (Feb. 14, 1938): Sec. 1; 1, 2. [on file]

“Farm Security Chief Opposing Indigent Plans.” Bakersfield Californian (June 24, 1938): 9.

“Farmers Ask Government to Stay Out of Farm Strikes of the Reds.” Woodlake Echo (May 11, 1934): 1.

“Farmers Farm Labor Camps.” San Francisco Chronicle (Mar. 18, 1937): 12.

Faverman, Anita E. “A Study of the Health of 1,000 Children of Migratory Agricultural Laborers in California.” Report of the Migratory Demonstration, July, 1936-June, 1937. Sacramento, CA: California State Department of Public Health. 1938. [on file]

_____. “Trailing Child and Maternal Health in California Migrant Agricultural Camps.” Report on the Second Year of the Migratory Demonstration, July 1937-June, 1938. Sacramento, CA: California State Department of Public Health. 1938. [on file]

Fearis, Donald F. “The California Farm Worker, 1930-1942.” Diss. University of California, Davis, 1971. Print.

“Federal Migratory Camps.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Sept. 29, 1939): 4.

Fessier, Michael. “Grapes of Wrath, 1977.” New West 2.5 (July 18, 1977): 24-31. [on file]

Presents several individual histories of the migrant experience in Kern County and how it continues to shape each life forty years later. Several used the values they learned, experiences they had, and some good fortune as young migrants to become highly successful entrepreneurs and landowners, whereas most were not nearly as successful and had to satisfy themselves with mere survival. Threaded throughout the article are keen observations of how the residents of Kern County have reacted to the migrants and their legacy, which ranges from the indignation of cotton magnate W. C. Camp against The Grapes of Wrath, which he condemns outright as a “lie” concocted mostly by communists, to the conspicuous absence of anything “Okie” at the Kern County Museum for fear of offending residents and, curiously enough, the “Okies,” and to the attitudes of some migrants who became successful growers like Roger Lantz, who, while fair and civil, deals as hard with Mexican migrants as his employer did in 1934.

Finley, Harold M. “A Constructive Approach to California’s Migrant Problem.” Los Angeles Times (Dec. 2, 1939):A4. [on file]

Reports that the California State Chamber of Commerce finds that migrants were “fooled” into believing that there would plenty of year around work and higher wages. California may not be able to absorb all of the migrants.

“First Lady Sheds Light on Problem of Migrants.” Fresno Bee (Dec. 13, 1940).

Fischer, Jack. “Running from the Depression and the Dust Bowl, the Thomas Family Left Oklahoma in Search of Good Wages, Free Fruit and the Promised Land.” San Jose Mercury (Apr. 9, 1989): A1, A20. [on file]

“Flee Dust Bowl for California.” Business Week (July 3, 1937): 36-7.

“Flood Damage in California Increases, Rains for 16th Day.” Yuma Daily Sun (Yuma Arizona Sentinel) (Feb. 11, 1938). [on file]

“Flood of Migrants Continues: Job Booth Guides Workers to Employment Centers.” Bakersfield Californian (Jun. 22, 1940): front page. [on file]

Folkart, Burt A. “Migrant Mother Dies of Cancer.” Los Angeles Times (Sept. 19, 1983): SD_A4. [on file]

“Food Rushed to Starving Farm Colony.” San Francisco News (Mar. 10, 1936):3. [on file]

Fossey, W. Richard. “’Talkin’ Dust Bowl Blues’: A Study of Oklahoma’s Cultural Identity During the Great Depression.” Chronicles of Oklahoma 55.1 (1977): 12-33. [on file]

Foster, Doug. “Dust Bowl Refugees Reminisce.” Salinas Californian (Aug. 21, 1939): 1. [on file]

Reports on Salinas’ Fruit Tramp Picnic, the annual reunion of the Dust Bowl refugees who worked as farm laborers. These migrants, often called “fruit tramps” and “vegetable tourists”, reminisce about the “Little Oklahoma” migrant settlement, where they lived in deplorable conditions, living in cardboard homes and ditch banks. Female dust bowl refugees talk about how they were paid less than their male counterparts. Many of the former migrants remember the 1936 Salina strike, “which turned Salinas into a virtual armed camp”. Many were of the former migrants were tear-gassed during the strike: “If you didn’t zig when they zagged down there [Main street] you were really in trouble . . . because you might end up with a tear gas canister upside the head.”

“400,000 Fled West from Dust Bowl; Flow Begins Reverse.” Fresno Bee (Mar. 19, 1972):1.

Fowler, Dan. “What’s Become of the Okies.” Look 17.1 (Jan. 13, 1953): 19-21. [on file]

Francis, Warren B. “Anti-Okie Law Ruled Invalid: California Statute Nullified by High Court in Unanimous Decision.” Los Angeles Times (Nov. 25, 1941): 1. [on file]

French, Warren, ed. A Companion to The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Viking, 1963.

“Friday Session May Break 2 to 2 Vote.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 28, 1939): 1.

Friendly, Alfred. “Carrots from California: On the Steinbeck Trail.” Survey Graphic 28.7 (July 1939): 460. [on file]

“From Ozarks to Visalia.” Visalia Times Delta (Mar. 2, 1943): 2.

“Funds for Migratory Camp Must Be Halved According to Report.” Arvin Tiller (Mar. 31, 1939): 1.

Ganzel, Bill. Dust Bowl Descent. Lincoln: University of Nebraska, 1984.

–. “Return to the Dust Bowl.” Historic Preservation 36.5 (1984): 32-37. [on file]

Bill Ganzel returns to Dust Bowl scenes made famous by the Farm Security Administration photographers Dorothea Lange and Arthur Rothstein. See also Ganzel’s article: “Return to the Dustbowl.” Historic Preservation 36.5 (1984):32-37.

Gavin, Christy and Garth Milam. “A ‘Flat, Tired People’: The Health of California’s Okies During the 1930s.” Walter W. Stiern Library, California State University, 2012. Web.

Gavin, Christy. “A School of Their Own: Educating Okie Children in 1930s California.” Walter W. Stiern Library, California State University, 2011. Web.

Gazit, Chana. “Surviving the Dust Bowl.” Agricultural History 72.4 (1998): 767-9.

Review of a television broadcast of personal interviews with elderly Texans, Oklahomans, and Kansans who reminisce about their childhoods on the Plains during the Great Depression.

Gelber, Steven M. “The Eye of the Beholder: Images of California by Dorothea Lange and Russell Lee.” California History 64.4 (1985): 264-71.

An important visual contrast in the photographs of Lange and Lee documents California life during the Great Depression.

Gibbons, Boyd. “Do We Treat Our Soil Like Dirt?” National Geographic (Sept. 1984):344-349. [on file]

Gilbert, Judith Anne. “Migrations of the Oklahoma Farm Population, 1930 to 1940.” M.A. thesis, University of Oklahoma, 1965. Print. [on file]

Investigates the causes and effects of migration by Oklahoman farmers during the 1930s through an analysis of newspapers, public documents, letters, and previous studies. It finds that three consecutive years of drought beginning in 1932 created the increasingly harsh economic and living conditions for marginal farmers, particularly in the state’s western counties, that, when combined with other factors such as the introduction of the tractor and depressed prices, started their exodus in 1935 to eastern counties or beyond the state to California, thus confirming in the main what Steinbeck had written of Oklahoma in 1939.

Girvin, Robert E. “Hopelessness Housed in California Jungles.” San Francisco Chronicle (Mar. 8, 1937): 2, 6. [on file]

Fruit pickers living in “jungles” around Marysville and Yuba City live in abject poverty. According to Girvin, the majority of these “jungle inhabitants” are former owners of small farms in the Great Plains forced because of drought, insects, and dust. However, social workers, according to Girvin, claim that the “Sacramento valley jungles…are clean respectable compared to conditions in Kern County.” Migrants in the Buttonwillow, Buena Vista and Tuckerton live in “almost unimaginable filth—festering sores of miserable humanity.”

_____. “Migrant Workers Thinkers: Forum at Federal Resettlement Camp Proves Eyeopener.” San Francisco Chronicle (Mar. 10, 1937): 1. [on file]

Girvin reports on an open forum at the Marysville Camp, held by seven residents representing the “responsible element” of the thousands of California’s migrant workers. The reporter fails to mention how these particular representatives were selected for the forum. However, the seven voice their opinions on a variety of labor topics. They claim, for instance, that the New Deal’s “plowing under” program forced many workers to California because once the land was plowed under, the landowner “pocketed his Government check, and told us there wouldn’t’t be any more work.” The workers are ambivalent towards unionization. On the one hand, they complain about the growers (poor working conditions) and labor contractors (reduce migrant wages) yet they would clearly like to distance themselves from the “reds,” whom they see as “unreasonable.” But as one worker remarked, “Trouble is [the red] are always willing to be in the vanguard and do the dirty work, and we get in a position to follow them.”

Goldschmidt, Walter. As You Sow. New York: Harcourt, Brace, 1947. Print.

Goldschmidt presents the culmination of a study on commercialized farming in three, rural communities in California. The towns of Wasco, Dinuba, and Arvin are analyzed to unveil the changes in social relationships and institutions that urbanization caused in rural areas. Based on his findings, Goldschmidt debunks common generalizations about California rural societies, which were often described as close-knit, backwards, uneducated, and unconcerned with progress. Goldschmidt, instead, found the opposite to be true for the rural California communities studied.

Within the communities, two major social classes emerged. Older residents inherited ideas and attitudes over the years distinguishing them from the resident laborers and seasonal migrant workers whom they recognized as “outsiders.”  As owners of the land being worked, older residents were also able to exercise control over the “outsiders” by dominating the financial and marketing institutions, as well as the politics involved in agriculture.  At the time of publication, the migrant workers in these areas consisted mainly of depression-era migrants, with far fewer numbers of African-Americans, Asians, and Mexicans than would be found in later years.  Racial and class discrimination was common and occasionally resulted in conflicts between the classes.  In Dinuba, it was found that with smaller farm holdings came more autonomy and a more progressive outlook. There also appeared to be less friction between the classes. While farming was also once simply a means of livelihood, the industrialization of agriculture allowed it to become a way of achieving wealth.  The author further argues that the urbanization of rural society and the characteristics that he found in California would soon be seen throughout rural areas across the nation.

_____. “Down on the Farm: New Style.” The Antioch Review 8.2 (Summer 1948):179-792.

“Government Medicine.” Editorial. Los Angeles Times (Jun. 13, 1937): 4. [on file]

“Grammar School Has 690 Pupils Enrolled.” Wasco News (Nov. 7, 1930): 6.

“Grapes Back.” Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 27, 1941): 1.

“Grapes of Joy: ‘Okies’ Forge Ahead.” Current History Forum 51 (Mar. 1940): 48-49. [on file]

Concisely reports on the rapid development of East Salinas, a suburb east of Salinas founded by migrants. Founded in 1933 as a camp of tents, trailers, and shacks, the residents of Salinas called the community of migrants “Little Oklahoma” because many of the migrants had come from that state in search of work, bringing with them little more than an ageing, temperamental car piled with their few material possessions. Two Salinas residents who owned large parcels of unimproved farm land subdivided their holdings and sold them to migrants for $50 with at least $5 down payment, leading to a small land rush among migrants who could afford to buy or borrow. Working on local lettuce farms, many new land owners used their earnings to build better housing for themselves and within two years bought more property, expanded their homes, or built new ones while renting their former ones, amounting to over $100,000 of new construction within the past seven years.

“The Grapes of Wrath and Factories in the Fields.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 1, 1939): 1.

“‘Grapes of Wrath’ Ban Ends.” Library Journal (1 March 1941): 2. [on file]

Reports the lifting of a ban on The Grapes of Wrath in the Kern County library system. A year and a half earlier, the Board of Supervisors made a “request” to the library system that it remove the book from circulation after residents expressed tremendous outrage at its portrayal of the migrant camp near Arvin and the experiences of the Joad family in Kern County. On January 27, the board voted unanimously to “reconsider the said resolution” and bade county librarian Gretchen Knief to restore the book to library shelves. According to the article, demand for the book immediately surged after the lifting of the ban.

“Gratifying Response to Appeal for Funds Aid Needy and Jobless.” Wasco News (Dec. 19, 1930): 1, 10.

Gray, Thorne. “Oklahoma Family Heads West in 1927.” The Modesto Bee (Nov. 4, 1979): A-12.

Grego, Peter. “From Dust Thou Art.” Bakersfield, CA: California State University, Bakersfield, 1982. [on file, includes Grego’s working copy with notes]

Gregory, James N. American Exodus: The Dust Bowl Migration and Okie Culture in California. New York: Oxford University Press, 1989. Print.

In a study of the 1930s Dust Bowl migration, Gregory challenges the stereotypical image of the “Okie” and instead places the migrants coming into California into a specific historical perspective. Although migration to California from the southwest had been occurring steadily since as early as 1910 and would continue past WWII, the Great Depression was the defining moment in California “Okie” experience.

Divided into two parts, the first section describes the actual migration and resettlement of Southwesterners to California during the 1930s, and compares their driving force for resettlement to those migrants who had left earlier in the era. Though finding more similarities than differences, Gregory argues that there were two critical factors that set the Dust Bowl migrants apart from other white, native-born Americans who came to reside in California: They received a hostile response from the already established population, and the economic opportunities were very limited because of the political and economic turmoil that was enveloping the nation at this time.  Though they attempted to assimilate into the native population, the Dust Bowl migrants were slow to be accepted into the social fabric of the region. They were despised as transient farm workers and were economically and socially discriminated against. Many Dust Bowl migrants preferred to pursue avoidance and minimized contact with unfriendly locals. They settled in separate neighborhoods, affiliating mostly with other newcomers like themselves.  As a result, distinct sub-cultures arose from within their communities with deep ties to the social and cultural customs of their native regions in the south.

The second part of Gregory’s work depicts how the “Okie” subculture has not only survived in areas throughout California, especially the San Joaquin Valley, but, through their religion, politics, and music, the migrants actually made a permanent imprint on the land.  Gregory largely attributes three factors as especially important to the Dust Bowl migrants’ subculture: evangelical Protestantism, which provided them a self-respect that living amongst a hostile population had largely denied them; “Plain folk Americanism,” a term describing an evolving attitude of individualism, racism, nativism, and anti-communism; and country music, which was a creative and meaningful outlet to convey their cultural values.  Gregory states that with the onset of World War II, economic opportunities became available to many of the depression era migrants.  Though moving into the middle class, many of the “Okies” retained aspects of their unique heritage.  Years later, the legacy of the Dust Bowl migration can be seen in parts of California where there has been significant cultural change.

_____. “Dust Bowl Legacies: The Okie Impact on California, 1939-1989.” California History 68.3 (Sept. 1989): 74-85, 146-7. [on file]

Analyzes common conceptions about migrants and their impact on the culture of the San Joaquin Valley. Contrary to the impression given by Steinbeck, the article shows that migrants had been coming to California long before the mid-1930s and continued to do so through the 1940s, settling in cities at least as often as in the country, and working more often than not despite their hardships, initially in agriculture but then progressing into wartime industries until and once again during the 1950s into trades such as construction and transportation. Their urban presence also introduced aspects of their heritage into valley culture such as chicken fried steak, a distinct accent, and evangelical Christianity, but none had so profound an effect as country music, which the article argues was essential to reconstructing the “Okie identity” into a more socially acceptable one and credits to many musicians, particularly Bob Wills during the 1940s and Merle Haggard in the 1960s. See also: Gregory’s American Exodus: The Dust Bowl Migration and Okie Culture in California. New York: Oxford University Press, 1989.

Grey, Michael R. “Dustbowls, Disease, and the New Deal: The Farm Security Administration Migrant Health Programs, 1935-1947.” Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences 48 (1993): 3-39. [on file]

Griffis, Ken. “Story and Discography of Beverley Hill Billies.” JEMF Quarterly 16 (1980): 3-17.

Griffith, Bob. “Oildale Is a Town Proud of Its History.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 8, 1980): Sect. A; 1, 6.

Grossman, Aubrey W. “Who Is a Vagrant in California?” California Law Review 23 (July 1935): 506-518. [on file]

Strongly argues that anti-vagrancy laws are indefensible considering how they allow police to abuse their authority, how they burden the justice system with cases based on circumstantial evidence, and how the language of these statutes is discriminating or in conflict with previous statutes. Given such problems, especially the discrimination against present conditions rather than acts, it argues that the courts should declare them unconstitutional or the legislature repeal them. See: Ames, Alden Judge (San Francisco Municipal Court). “Reply to ‘Who Is a Vagrant in California’ in California Law Review 23 (July 1935): 616-620. [both articles on file]

Grossman, James R. Land of Hope: Chicago, Black Southerners, and the Great Migration. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1989. Print.

Using personal accounts of southern African-Americans, Grossman examines the mass movement of black southerners to northern cities during and after WWI known as the Great Migration.  Viewed as a land of opportunity, the north held the promise of jobs, education, and freedom from an overtly racist southern society. Grossman hesitates to describe the movement as solely based on historical imperative, but instead argues the movement north was a conscious and meaningful act on the part of black southerners to find better opportunities to improve their lives.  Grossman attempts to place the Great Migration into the historical context of southern history, while also focusing on the individual migrants and the experiences they had in both the south and the north.

Separated into two parts, part one establishes a narrative and describes the thoughts and actions of black southerners when they first arrived in the north.  Grossman argues past experiences in the south influenced how the migrants approached schools, politics, society, and workplaces in the north.  Understanding this cultural baggage gives insight into southern African-Americans’ actions and decisions when they stepped into the industrialized northern cities.  The second part of the book focuses on the migrant experience in Chicago.  Chicago’s steel mills and packinghouses required southern migrants to adapt quickly from nonindustrial to industrial work.  Coming from a region where race defined every aspect of social and economic life, the new structures in race and class in the north altered the migrant’s identity and their reactions to new issues reflected a growing change in their perception of American society and the role they would play in it.

Guerin-Gonzales, Camille. Mexican Workers and American Dreams: Immigration, Repatriation, and California Farm Labor, 1900-1939. New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University, 1994. Print.

In a study of Mexican labor in California, Camille Guerin-Gonzales examines immigration patterns, worker recruitment, Mexican organized strikes, and repatriation during the first half of the 1900s. Mexican laborers are described as being caught in the North American marketplace with hopes for an American Dream that would never be realized.  California’s large landholders viewed themselves as community farmers within the agricultural community, but viewed immigrant laborers as short-term hires to assist during labor shortages.  Mexicans were viewed as racially inferior outsiders, who, at the end of harvest, would be returning home to Mexico.  Because other ethnic minorities had proven to stay, California’s businessmen desired a workforce that was easily managed and easily eliminated when no longer required. Mexico’s laborers appeared to be just that.

During the start of the Great Depression, the Mexican repatriation program sent back to Mexico nearly half a million immigrants and Mexican Americans. Guerin-Gonzales explores the underlying forces that prompted the U.S. government to remove such a vast amount of people, and explains as unemployment rose, Mexicans, regardless of their citizenship status, were targeted in an effort to reduce relief burdens.  Deportation campaigns and scare tactics encouraged Mexicans to “voluntarily” return to Mexico. Guerin-Gonzales argues repatriation spread quickly and widely because of the widespread perception by Americans that Mexicans were racially inferior and thus not able to strive for the American Dream.  Fully supporting the U.S. government’s plan, the Mexican government sought to return workers to their native land in order to stimulate its own industrial development and economic growth.  Upon their return to Mexico, many Mexicans found themselves in as dire a position as they had in the U.S.  Economic conditions appeared to be even worse in Mexico, and repatriates found themselves feeling as foreigners in their own home country. Guerin-Gonzales states it was the first time in U.S. history that the federal government sponsored the mass expulsion of immigrants.

Guthrie, Woody. “Talking Dust Bowl.” Smithsonian Folkways. 1950.

Hall, Chapin. “Transient Influx Seen As Vital State Problem.” Los Angeles Times (Apr. 28, 1935). [on file]

Hamilton, James. “Common Forms for Uncommon Actions: The Search for Political Organization in Dust Bowl California.” American Journalism 16.1 (Winter 1999): 79-103. [on file]

Examines how a migrant camp newspaper provided a forum for migrants to engage in social criticism. From 1938 to 1942, the managers of the Arvin Migratory Labor Camp published a mimeographed newspaper that provided news, information, and entertainment to migrants residing in the camp as a part of efforts by the Farm Security Administration in “rehabilitating” the “rootless wanderers” into settled, productive wage-earning citizens. Despite ostensible editorial control by the camp managers, the newspaper also served as an open forum for migrants who wished to engage in social criticism, particularly of capitalism as practiced by growers, or give vent to the frustrations of the migrant experience through forms familiar to migrants such as verse and dialogue. The study argues that although such a forum might have been useful in organizing migrants into an effective labor front, there was a tension inherent to migrant culture between collectivism, which favored organization either under or in alliance with the Left, and a nearly anarchistic individualism that distrusted politics and tended towards religious fatalism. See also Hamilton’s “(Re)writing Communities: Dust Bowl Migrant Identities and the Farm Security Administration Camp Newspaper at Arvin, California, 1938-1942.” Diss. Univ. of Iowa, 1993.

_____. (Re)writing Communities: Dust Bowl Migrant Identities and the Farm Security Administration Camp Newspaper at Arvin, California, 1938-1942.” Dissertation Abstracts International 54.10 (1994): 3626A.

Handy, Ellen. “Farm Security Administration Color Photographs.” Arts Magazine 58 (January 1984): 18. [on file]

Discusses the composition and technique of approximately 700 color Farm Security Administration (FSA) images uncovered in 1978. Photographers Marion Post Wolcott, Russell Lee, Jack Delano, and John Vachon portray an America recovering from the Great Depression. Less intense than the early Depression era photographs, this collection is more upbeat depicting picturesque landscapes where “man and nature are in perfect harmony, united by the work of plowing. Hard times seem very far away.” The photos provide insight into later stages of the FSA photographic project.

Hart, Leo B. “Vineland School Held Classes for Migrant Children.” Quarterly Bulletin Historic Kern 33.1 (March 1984): 1-2. [on file]

Hartley, James, Steven M. Sheffrin, and J. David Vasche. “Reform During Crisis: The Transformation of California’s Fiscal System During the Great Depression.” The Journal of Economic History 56 (September 1996): 657-78. [on file]

Discusses the composition and technique of approximately 700 color Farm Security Administration (FSA) images uncovered in 1978. Photographers Marion Post Wolcott, Russell Lee, Jack Delano, and John Vachon portray an America recovering from the Great Depression. Less intense than the early Depression era photographs, this collection is more upbeat depicting picturesque landscapes where “man and nature are in perfect harmony, united by the work of plowing. Hard times seem very far away.” The photos provide insight into later stages of the FSA photographic project.

Hanson, Chester G. “Tide of Jobless Wanderers Turns Toward East Again.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 31, 1932):A1. [on file]

Hanson traveled the southern route from El Paso to Yuma in order to get a first-hand glimpse of the migrant experience. Discovers that many of these migrants have become disillusioned with Southern California and have begun to head back east. Reports on the difficulty for migrants riding freight trains, on the wood piles towns have formed so that migrants can work for meals, and reports on various migrants’ opinions on how charitable Los Angeles is towards them.

“Harty Explains Stand on Novel [Grapes of Wrath].” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 28, 1939): 1.

Harvey, Jean. “Tom Collins Hasn’t’t Read ‘The Grapes of Wrath’.” Kern Herald (Aug. 24, 1939): 1.

Haslam, Gerald. “What About the Okies?” American History Illustrated 12.1 (April 25, 1977): 28-39. See also Haslam’s article, “Oildale,” The Californians (Jan./Feb. 1988): 36-39.

Presents a brief and slightly revisionist history of the migrant experience in California during the 1930s. Using recent research by Walter Stein and illustrating it with vignettes from The Grapes of Wrath, the article challenges some of the received wisdom concerning the causes of the migration and the public reaction to it in California. Although drought and dust storms played a role in causing the migration, it argues that soil depletion, tenant farming, the unintended consequences of federal agricultural policies, and the introduction of tractors were more important but receive less attention because the natural causes were so spectacular. The article also notes that most Californians seem to have been initially indifferent towards the “Okies” until federal agricultural policies enacted in 1938 cut cotton cultivation and public awareness of their presence increased through news and photo essays, many of them biased against migrants by the input of incensed growers and the politically conservative.

Haywood, C. Robert. “The Great Depression: Two Kansas Diaries.” Great Plains Quarterly 18.1 (1998): 23-37. [on file]

“Health Problems Arising from Migration.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 27, 1939):1, 17.[on file]

According to a survey issued by the Kern County Health Department, “large squatter camps of yesterday are no more. Now, only a few isolated squatters can be located during the busy harvest season and none at all during the slack periods.” But the report concedes that rural and suburban slums are becoming a problem.

Heffernan, Helen. “Report on Conference on Education of Children of Seasonal Workers.” California Journal of Elementary Education (Feb. 1939): 181-192. [on file]

Hellesen, Richard and Michael Silversher. South Coast Repertory Study Guide for the 2004 Educational Touring Production of “The Pride of the Weedpatch Camp.” [on file]

The study guide is designed to be used in conjunction with Jerry Stanley’s young adult book, Children of the Dust Bowl (see below).

“Help Sought to Ban Indigents: Mendocino County Files Resolution with Supervisors.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 27, 1939);II. [on file]

Henderson, Caroline A., and Alvin O. Turner. Letters from the Dust Bowl. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2001. Print.

Alvin O. Turner presents a collection of published articles and personal correspondence from Caroline Henderson, a well-educated Oklahoma farmwoman and popular Dust Bowl writer.  Henderson’s writings evoke powerful images of life in rural America prior to, during, and after the economic crash of the 1930s.  The chapters are chronological, with brief commentary and background information from Turner at the beginning of each.  Caroline Henderson spent most of her childhood in Iowa, graduated from a women’s liberal arts college in Massachusetts, and later earned a master’s degree in literature from the University of Kansas.  In 1907, Henderson’s love of the land pushed her to Oklahoma where she would homestead and teach. She met and married her husband, Will, after hiring him to dig a well on her land, and the two would remain on the farm together for fifty years.

Over the years, Henderson composed letters to childhood friends, college classmates, her daughter, and many others.  When their farmland suffered from droughts in the early years of the couple’s marriage, Henderson looked to writing as a way to supplement her family’s income.  Practical Farmer first published Henderson’s work, but she quickly became a regular columnist in the magazine Ladies World and took on the identity of “The Homestead Lady.”  Writing primarily for women, Henderson approached a broad array of subjects in her articles.  She wrote openly about personal struggles, but also gave well-educated thoughts on the World War I, education, religion, and nature.  In 1932, Henderson agreed to publish, in the Atlantic Monthly, an exchange of letters with another writer and farmwoman, Evelyn Harris, titled “Letters from the Dust Bowl.” The two discussed local farm problems and the effects on the farming community, debated the government’s response to the farm crisis, and described the dust storms that devastated the region over a few short years.  Though Henderson published her last article in 1937, she would continue her writing and correspondence until her death in 1966.

Henshaw, Betty Grant. Children of the Dust: An Okie Family Story. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press, 2006. Print.

Children of the Dust is the personal memoir of Betty Grant Henshaw, one of nine children born to tenant farmers in Oklahoma during the Dust Bowl era. Henshaw chronicles her family’s life in Oklahoma, their subsequent move west in the 1940s, and the backbreaking work she and her family endured in the fields and heat of California’s San Joaquin Valley.  In an introduction to the memoir, Victoria Smith describes the historical setting for the book and gives background information about the Oklahoma region, its geography, and population changes over time.  She compares Henshaw’s memoir to other Oklahoma Dust Bowl literature that has been written, but states that Henshaw’s memoir adds an important and unique perspective to the already well-established genre.

In the first section titled “Oklahoma,” Henshaw recalls a tight-knit family, bonded together by faith and love, and recounts her father’s desperate struggle to provide for his large family, while also holding on to the dream of owning his own farm.  Henshaw describes her father as a hardworking man, dedicated, and loyal, not only to his family, but to the land as well.  When Henshaw is fifteen, her father finally worked himself to the point of exhaustion and came to the realization that he could not get ahead by staying in Oklahoma.  The family then began their journey to California where many of her father’s siblings had relocated years before.  In the second section “California,” Henshaw describes family life, work, and growing up in Corcoran, California in the years after the Dust Bowl.  Henshaw reflects on her life and despite her family’s hardships, appreciates her rare and wonderful childhood in Oklahoma, and believes her life was positively shaped by the rich experiences she had in her younger years as a child of farmers.

Proudly recounts a “rare and wonderful childhood” as the daughter of a sharecropper in the hills of Oklahoma during the Dust Bowl who eventually migrated to California and then later to Oregon.

Heredia, Rick. “Wrath.” Bakersfield Californian (Apr. 23, 1989).

Heyman, Therese Thau. Celebrating A Collection: The Work of Dorothea Lange. Oakland, Calif.: Oakland Museum, 1978. [on file]

Selected pages from Heyman’s ninety-seven page book. Includes introductory statements by Daniel Dixon, Joyce Minick and Therese Heyman.

Hibbs, Ben. “Footloose Army.” Country Gentleman (Feb. 7-8, 1940): 7-8, 42-44. [on file]

Presents a “well-rounded picture” of migrants in California that defends growers against claims of mistreatment. Pitched at middle and upper class growers, the article denounces claims by “left-wingers” such as Steinbeck and McWilliams that growers hold migrants in poverty while striving to show that most migrants refuse or oppose orga-nizers and that many growers on their own initiative have actually improved life for most migrants by building clean and spacious residency camps. In spite of its examples of generosity, the article repeatedly indulges in disparagement of migrants, most notably in citing Dr. Lee A. Stone, the Director of Public Health for Madera County, who describes forty percent of migrants as “shiftless trash who live like hogs, no matter how much is done for them” while he relates how he has discovered migrant families living in their own excrement or cases of incest. It also rebuffs criticism of industrialized agriculture, stating that it has increased the variety of the American diet and is the only way for Californian agriculture to succeed.

Hightower, Eve. “‘Okies’ and Today’s Farm Labor: Some Things Don’t Change.” Modesto Bee (Sept. 17, 2008):1, back page. [on file] See accompanying article below by Jeff Jardine.

“Hobo Barrier Drive Launched by Officials; Southland Supervisors Seek Patrol in Joint Move to Halt Vagrant Influx.” Los Angeles Times (Nov. 6, 1936):A1. [on file]

Hoffman, Elizabeth, et al. “The Failure of Government-sponsored Cartels and Development of Federal Farm Policy.” Economic Inquiry 33 (July 1995): 365-82. [on file]

An examination of U.S. government attempts to organize an orange cartel in California and Florida in the 1930s. Farmers’ opposition to production quotas and output reductions forced a shift in economic policy.

Holzschuh, Alma (Farm Security Administration, California Region IX). “A Study of 6,655 Migrant Households Receiving Emergency Grants.” San Francisco, 1938.

“Homeless Hordes Meet Cold Reception on Pacific Coast.” Southeast Missourian (11 August 1937):8. [on file]

Reports that Harold W. Robertson, Gospel Army field secretary, voiced concern that migrants have become financial burdens and health hazards. Reports that Los Angeles will no longer provide relief for the migrants and that the number of migrants entering the State exceeds the number of jobs available.

Hori, Masahiro. “New Evidence on the Causes and Propagation of the Great Depression.” Diss. University of California, Berkeley, 1996.

“Housing Officials Plan Fight to Get State Authority.” The Sacramento Bee (Mar. 9, 1940). [on file]

Reports on the establishment of the state housing authority.

“How to Get The Grapes of Wrath from the Library.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 1, 1939): 1.

Howarth, William. “The Okies: Beyond the Dust Bowl.” National Geographic (Sept.1984): 320-49. [on file]

Howarth’s interviews with some of the sharecroppers and homesteaders from the Great Plains who journeyed westward to California during the 1930s. Along the way, from Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, “Okies” and their descendents can still be found. The poverty and homelessness that united them formed an unbreakable bond.

Howe, Nicholas. “Oklahoma Stories.” Southwest Review 80 (1995): 207-29. [on file]

Stories about Oklahomans and their migration to the western states during the Great Depression.

“Huge Migrant Petition Goes to Congress.” Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 9, 1939): 1. [on file]

“Hundreds Stranded Here and El Centro due to Washouts.” Yuma Daily Sun (March 3, 1938):1.

Describes the heavy storm flooding in southern California that has closed or endangered the major highways to and from Arizona, thus stranding travelers on either side of the state border.

Huntington, Emily H. Doors to Jobs: A Study of the Organization of the Labor Market in California. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1942. Print. [on file]

The mass unemployment of the 1930s sparked the need for a more organized labor market.  Doors to Jobs presents the results of a study conducted in 1938 designed to find an accurate description of California’s labor market and create a solution to the problem of unemployment.  Job-hunting in the 1930s was desperate and unorganized.  Thousands of workers would often converge on one location seeking employment, only to find that just one hundred workers were needed. It was chaotic for both employer and employee, and often proofed to be a waste of time, resources, and energy that could have been put to better use elsewhere.  In 1935, the California State Employment Service was created, recognizing a need for a more central labor market.  However, after three years there was still little to show in terms of organization and effectiveness.

Huntington’s study was conducted in the areas of San Francisco, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Bakersfield to ensure the inclusion of a large and diverse population.  The California State Employment Service is thoroughly researched and found to be failing because of the difficulty in setting up new institutions during a time of high unemployment, inefficient procedures, discrimination of workers, and lack of value placed on employment exchanges.  After investigating government relief organizations, educational institutions, nongovernmental free agencies, fee-charging employment agencies, labor contractors, placement work of trade unions, and employers associations it is found that many of these existing agencies serve the same group of workers. Huntington believes the application of scientific principals in placing workers would best bring workers to jobs that suit their particular skills and training.  Huntington concludes a labor market system would be slow to take hold; however, its development would sharply reduce the tension found during periods of high unemployment.

Hurley, F. Jack. Portrait of a Decade: Roy Stryker and the Development of Documentary Photography in the Thirties. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University, 1972.

Hurt, R. Douglas. “Letters from the Dust Bowl.” Panhandle-Plains Historical Review 52 (1979): 1-13. [on file]

In 1940, Wilson Cowen, Acting Regional Director of the Farm Security Administration in Amarillo, Texas, hoped to stop the flow of migrants to California by urging Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas residents to stay home. Cowen sent 20,000 letters to Dust Bowl farmers and received responses indicating that Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas farmers still looked to the government for relief. Hurt’s article contains twelve such letters.

“I Wonder Where We Can Go Now.” Fortune (Apr. 19, 1939): 90-94, 112-119. Reprinted in: French, Warren, ed. A Companion to The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Viking, 1963; The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Peter Lisca. New York: Penguin, 1977.

“Ills of Labor Migrant Told.” Los Angeles Times (4 July 1937):4. [on file]

Reports that U.S. Labor Secretary Frances Perkins informed the Senate that migrants face multiple hardships: lack of job assurance, low pay, prejudice, and poor living conditions.

“Indigent Halt Demanded.” Los Angeles Times (22 June 1938):A1. [on file]

Reports that Kern County, California petitioned the federal government to block migrants from entering the state. Argues that the migrants bring disease, drain the county coffers, and the State cannot provide enough work for the migrants.

“An Indigent Quarantine.” Los Angeles Times (18 May 1935): A4. [on file]

Argues that the California legislature needs to pass the Jones-Redwine bill, which proposes to bar “transient indigents” from entering California, and that the State has the right to close its borders to migrants.

“Interview with Florence Owens Thompson, the Mona Lisa of the Dust Bowl.” Bob Dotson, correspondent. NBC Today Show. NBCUniversal Media. 30 Oct. 1979. NBC Learn. Web. 8 Oct. 2013.  [transcript on file]

“Is ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ Too Hot for Hollywood?” Look (Oct. 24,1939): 12-15. [on file]

Issler, Anne Roller. “California and Its Migrants.” Survey 85 (Oct. 1949): 547+. [on file]

Investigates recent state and federal efforts at improving the living conditions of migrants. Drawing on the conclu-sions of a recent state study on crime, which argues that the need for mobility among migrants strongly contributes to the high rates of delinquency among them, the article examines current and proposed means of settling migrants, which include liberalizing welfare payments, resettlement into established communities, and federal residency camps. Governor Warren and his commission favors retaining federal residency camps, citing how they have contri-buted to the stability of migrant families by providing them with sound lodgings and a sense of permanence, yet large-scale growers oppose them, fearing that such camps would invite federal intrusion into their management and become “hotbeds of agitation.” To that end, the state and other migrant-friendly groups have tried to buy the camps, which are due for demolition, but large-scale growers and their associations have consistently thwarted all efforts.

Jamieson, Stuart M. “A Settlement of Rural Migrant Families In the Sacramento Valley, California.” Rural Sociology 7 (Mar. 1942): 49-61. [on file]

Defines elements that give the migrant worker the appearance of a separate “ethnic group” in some California communities. Author sees their organization into unions for collective bargaining as a way of improving their economic position. The problem in California in adjusting to this influx of migrant families is unique and has made their permanent absorption into the community a difficult and slow process.

Janow, Seymour J. “Migration Westward: Summary of a Decade.” Land Policy Review (Oct. 4, 1941): 10-14. [on file]

Janow, Seymour J. and William Gilmartin. “Labor and Agricultural Migration to California, 1935-1940.” Monthly Labor Review (Jul. 1941): 18-34. [on file]

Statistically analyzes migration to California in terms of origin, point of entry into the state, and seasonal variation in number. According to data gathered at checkpoints on the usual points of entry along state borders with Oregon, Nevada, and Arizona, states in the Great Plains have yielded the most migrant families due to drought and agricultural depression, which had been the bane of growers since the 1880s, and the recent introduction of tractors to farming, which made sharecropping untenable for marginal families. The data further indicate that the vast majority of migrants entered through the Arizona border, although entry began to drop towards the end of the decade as they found alternate routes or decided to try for Oregon and Washington, and that while the number of border crossings increases most during the second and third quarters of the year, the Arizona border again records the most change, both from and to California.

Japenga, Ann. “Educator Who Had a Heart for the Okies.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 18, 1987): 6: 1, 18. [on file]

Recalls how in 1940 Leo Hart link to interview (former superintendent of Kern County schools) started the Arvin Federal Emergency School for dust-bowl refugees, located next to the federal [Arvin] labor camp. Hart established the school to educate migrant children who were exposed to prejudice from school children, teachers, and the townspeople. Hart, the teachers that he hand-picked, and students helped build the migrant school. Hart constructed a curriculum that combined basic academics with vocational training.

Jardine, Jeff. “Symbol of an Era.” Modesto Bee (Sept. 17, 2008):1, back page. [on file]

See above, accompanying article by Eve Hightower.

John Steinbeck Committee to Aid Agricultural Organization. “Report of the Bakersfield Conference on Agricultural Labor—Health, Housing and Relief.” October 29, 1938, Bakersfield Californian.

Reports about a cotton picker strike against a twenty-five percent cut in wages. It also reports that the meeting was called by the John Steinbeck Committee to Aid Agricultural Organization, and the meeting addressed housing, relief, and health problems for migrant workers and cotton strikers. It further reports that during the meeting strikers, Farm Security Administration officials, and Agricultural Adjustment Administration officials spoke about the current issues faced by migrants. It finds that a program is needed for migrants that focus on housing, health, relief, education, labor supply, and wages.

Jones, Victor (California. University. Institute of Governmental Studies. Bureau of Public Administration, UC Berkeley). Transients and Migrants. Legislative Problems, No. 4. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1939

Kane, William D. “Depression Survivors Gather.” Modesto Bee (Nov. 4, 1979):A12.

See above, accompanying article by Emmett Corrigan.

Keagle, Cora L. “A Model Migratory Camp.” California Cultivator. (Feb. 12, 1938): 91, 118. [on file]

Keane, Melissa. “Cotton and Figs: The Great Depression in the Casa Grande Valley.” Journal of Arizona History 32.3 (1991): 267-90. [on file]

Cotton and figs, irrigation and drought, new arrivals and old settlers, all played a part in the Casa Grande Valley’s transition from sleepy railroad town to bustling agricultural community.

“Kern County Bosses Hold Workers in Peon System.” Western Worker (Jun. 2, 1935): 1. [on file]

Written by an anonymous “Worker Correspondent,” he recounts his observations at several Buttonwillow labor camps of the “big cotton bosses,” many of which were owned by Miller and Lux. The correspondent accuses these bosses of luring unemployed workers from Alabama to a worker’s paradise in the cotton fields of Kern County. According to the author, the bosses advertised across Alabama “telling the unemployed that they needed several families to take to the Garden of Eden.” The ads promised workers a house on an acre of land complete with a cow, chickens and a pig. But what these Alabamans got when they arrived, according to the article, were dirt-floor shacks with no beds or mattresses nor did they receive the promised livestock. In addition, they had to repay their bosses for their ticket to the “Garden of Eden.” The article concludes that the workers of Kern County must organize to fight for better pay and worker’s rights.

Kern County Union Labor Journal August 25, 1939: 1. [Letter]

Kern County. Board of Supervisors.  “Resolution.”  [on file]

Resolution states “resolved, that we, the Board of Supervisors, in defense of our free enterprises and of people who have been unduly wronged request that the production of the motion picture, “Grapes of Wrath”, adapted from the Steinbeck novel, not be completed by the Twentieth Century-Fox film corporation and request that use and possession and circulation of the novel, “Grapes of Wrath”, be banned from our library and schools.” See below letters from Kern County Librarian Gretchen Knief and other librarians.

_____.  Health Department. “The Relation Between Housing and Health.” Health Bulletin 4.2 (Feb. 1935):1. [on file]

_____. Kern General Hospital. “Report to Board of Supervisors: Progress Report: 1940”. [on file]

_____. Library. [Letter from Kern County Librarian, Gretchen Knief to Mabel R. Gillis [Librarian, California State Library]] 29 August 1939. California Odyssey: Dust Bowl Migration Archive. Walter Stiern Library, CSU, Bakersfield, Bakersfield, CA.

Kern County Librarian Knief’s perspective on the banning of the Grapes of Wrath. Attached are letters of responses from other California librarians.

_____. Sanitation Division. “Survey of Kern County Migratory Labor Problem: Supplementary Report as of July 1, 1939.” [on file]

“Kern Plea is Ignored by Fox.” Kern Herald (Aug. 27, 1939): 1.

“Kern Possesses 40 Per Cent of Needy Migrants in State.” Bakersfield Californian (May 9, 1938): 1. [on file]

Kessler-Harris, Alice. “Some Benefits of Labor Segregation in A Decade of Depression.” Out to Work: A History of Wage-Earning Women in the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1982. 250-379. Print. [excerpt on file]

Benefits of Labor Segregation is one chapter in Kessler-Harris’s book on the history of workingwomen in the United States.  Within this, Kessler-Harris presents the economic implications the Depression had upon women in the work force.  She explains that women in the 1920s had just begun experiencing the freedom of working outside of the home and enjoying new lifestyles that were previously unavailable to them.  Many women who came from relative affluence excitedly stepped out of the home for a chance at a career or to contribute monetarily to their households.  However, when the depression years hit, this lifestyle was altered from a casual choice to a financial necessity.  Women receiving low wages were seen as cheap labor by employers. Kessler-Harris argues individual reasons for working were no longer important as entire families became dependent upon the marginal wages that women could provide.

Kessler-Harris argues that the depression brought about a double message in the public’s stance on workingwomen. The crash had pushed many women into the workforce out of necessity; however, there was also a common notion that women should avoid paid work in order to allow more employment opportunities for men. Although the decade produced confusion and stifled feminist thought towards workingwomen, the depression era also brought about rarely mentioned opportunities for women, which many eagerly took advantage of and held on to. Kessler-Harris argues that the market crash reduced the employment barriers between men and women and created labor protection for women.  She further explains though the depression should have driven women back into the home, they held onto jobs available to them and occasionally even moved into new areas of work as well.  Rather than pushing women back into the home, Kessler-Harris believes it instead solidified their ability to manage their homes from the outside as easily as they had from the inside.

Kinberg, Olof. “On So-Called Vagrancy: A Medico-Sociological Study.” Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology 24 (1934): 409-27. [on file]

Kirwan, Tom. “Okie Campaign Progresses.” Fresno Bee (Aug. 5, 1970): 1.

_____. “Okie Gets a Different Meaning.” Fresno Bee (Oct. 23, 1968): 1.

Knief, Gretchen. Letter to Mabel R. Gillis [Librarian, California State Library] 29 August 1939. California Odyssey: Dust Bowl Migration Archive. Walter Stiern Library, CSU, Bakersfield, Bakersfield, CA. [on file under County of Kern Documents]

Kern County Librarian Knief’s perspective on the banning of the Grapes of Wrath. Attached are letters of responses from other California librarians.

“Kiwanis Members Hear Migrant Aid Talk.” Bakersfield Californian (July 13, 1939): 4. [on file]

Kozol, Wendy. “Madonnas of the Fields: Photography, Gender, and 1930s Farm Relief.” Genders 2 (Summer 1988): 1-23. [on file]

La Chapelle, Peter. Proud to Be an Okie: Cultural Politics, Country Music, and Migration to Southern California. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007.

Examines the political, cultural and racial aspects of the 1930s migration to California. Argues that country music in Southern California shifted from the radical music of musicians such as, Woody Guthrie  to the more conservative music of Merle Haggard.  Draws a parallel between the content of country music and politics in California and uses the shift from the radical politics of Upton Sinclair to the conservative politics of Ronald Reagan.

“LA Attorney Escorted Out of Area; 20 Jailed.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct 21, 1939):1, 16. [on file]

“La Follette Quiz Lacks Fireworks: Extent of Industrial Aid to Associated Farmers Is Revealed, but Civil Liberties Inquiry, Now on Last Lap, Has Failed Thus Far to Develop New Angles on Labor Violence.” Business Week (Jan. 13, 1940): 38. [on file]

Lamont in the 1930s (Part 3 of 6 part series).” Lamont Reporter (Sept. 19, 1973).

“Land Settlement for Unemployed.” Monthly Labor Review 35 (1932): 512-13. [on file]

Landis, Benson Y. “Where the Grapes of Wrath are Stored.” Information Service 19.7 (Feb. 17, 1940).

Landis, Paul H. “Social Aspects of Farm Labor in the Pacific States.” Rural Sociology (Dec. 1938): 421-33. [on file]

Discusses the problem of transient farm labor in the Pacific coast states citing two Farm Security Administration (FSA) measures that helped improve the social and economic conditions of these agricultural workers: (1) a socialized health program that would benefit the general welfare of farm laborers; and (2) the development of a chain of sanitary farm labor campus financed mainly by the federal government that improved their standard of living.

Lange, Dorothea. “The Assignment I’ll Never Forget.” Popular Photography 46.2 (Feb. 1960): 42-3. [on file]

Contains Lange’s account of her assignment to photograph starving pea pickers for the California State Relief Bureau in 1936.

_____. “Migrant Mother: A Famed Photojournalist Tells of the Picture that Symbolized an Era.” Popular Photography 46.2 (Feb. 1960): 42-3.

Recalls the story behind one of the most well-known photographs of the Great Depression.

Lange, Dorothea and Paul S. Taylor. American Exodus: A Record of Human Erosion. New York: Reynal & Hitchcock, 1939. See also a revised
edition published by Yale University, for the Oakland Museum, in 1999.

“Lavin Called Patrick Henry.” Kern Herald (Aug. 29, 1939): 1.

Lawson, Lisa H. “Scorned Outsiders of Another Era: The Okies of the late-1930s Were Blamed for Job Losses, Social Decay and School Overcrowding. Sound Familiar?”  Los Angeles Times (Dec. 28, 1993): B7. [on file]

Leiby, James. “State Welfare Administration in California.” Southern California Quarterly 55.3 (1973): 303-18.

Leland, R. G. “Medical Care for Migratory Workers.” Journal of the American Medical Association 114.1 (Jan. 6, 1940):45-55. [on file]

Lemke-Santangelo, Gretchen. Abiding Courage: African American Migrant Women and the East Bay Community. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1996.

Lewis, M.H. Director, SPL Studies & Surveys. California State Relief Administration. Migratory Labor in California. San Francisco: State of California, 1936. Note: excerpt pages 36-38, section F only.

Section entitled: The Migration of Drought Refugees to California” examines the additional source of labor for California agriculture which began in 1929 thorugh the end of 1935. Tens of thousands of people from farms and small towns in Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas poured westward. Excerpt focuses on migration to California by “motor vehicle” for the period June 16 to December 15, 1935 with a statistics showing states-of-origin, number of migrants, and race of migrants entering California.

Lingo, Marci. “Forbidden Fruit: The Banning of The Grapes of Wrath in the Kern County Free Library.” Libraries & Culture 38.4 (Fall 2003): 351-377. [on file]

Analyzes the history behind the banning of The Grapes of Wrath and its implications for librarians. Using sources ranging from oral histories to newspapers of differing political orientations, the article argues that county librarian Gretchen Knief complied with the ban in public to protect her employment but protested it in private and used her position to keep copies of the book in circulation by distributing them to libraries outside of the county. It also shows that public acceptance of the ban was not uniformly positive, noting that some residents believed it originated in a conspiracy between members of the grower and political elite, and that public demand for the book remained quite high despite government censure. Finally, it argues that the failure of the American Library Association to defend Knief resulted from recent turmoil within the organization over whether librarians were “agents of their sponsors” or defenders of intellectual freedom.

“Local Officials Seek $120,000 in Federal Care of Migrant Groups.”Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 27, 1938): 13.

Loftis, Anne. Witnesses to the Struggle: Imaging the 1930s California Labor Movement. Reno: University of Nevada Press, 1998.

Analyzes a substantial array of primary and secondary sources to show how “professional observers” such as Dorothea Lange and John Steinbeck used their craft to elevate the condition of the exploited and oppressed in California during the Great Depression to a national audience, sometimes for ideological reasons, and how their efforts added or subtracted from the aims of radical labor organizers within California.

Logsdon, Guy. “Dust Bowl and the Migrant.” American Scene 12.1 (1971). [on file]

Provides an overview of the causes of the Dust Bowl, the plight of the farmers, and the problems of the Okie migrant.  Includes reproductions of photographs by Dorothea Lange and oil paintings by Alexandre Hogue

“Look Into Her Eyes!” Mid-Week Pictorial [New York Times] (Oct. 17, 1936):23. [on file]

Maharidge, Dale. “Can We Get Along? A Study of Four California Families. Mother Jones (Nov./Dec.):20-27.

Michael Dunn, son of Lillian Dunn, talks about his mother’s involvement in the 1933 Pixley strike.  He and his mother both are concerned about present day immigration, believing that it leads to crime. Unlike Latino immigrants, says Dunn, “when my people came from Oklahoma, they settled in; they went to work; they went to school; they didn’t go on welfare; they assimilated (24).

Majka, Thodore J. “Poor People’s Movement and Farm Labor Insurgency.” Contemporary Crises 4 (1980): 282-308.

_____. “Regulating Farmworkers: The State and the Agricultural Labor Supply in California.” Contemporary Crises 2 (1978): 141-55.

Maksel, Rebecca. “Migrant Madonna.” Smithsonian 32.12(Mar. 2002): 21. [on file]

Manes, Sheila Goldring. “Depression Pioneers: The Conclusion of an American Odyssey Oklahoma to California, 1930-1950.” University of California Los Angeles Dissertation, 1982. [abstract on file]

Manley, John F. American Liberalism and the Democratic Dream. Stanford, CA: Stanford University, 1989.

Mann, Wanda D. “Migrant Nursing.” The Pacific Coast Journal of Nursing 37.11 (Nov. 1941): 658-60. [on file]

Mann discusses health conditions among agricultural migrant families who have emigrated from the “dust-bowl” area of the United States. Her work with the FSA’s Agricultural Workers Health & Medical Association in California is the focus of this article.

“Many Transients Self-Supporting Survey Reveals.” Shafter Progress (Jan. 31, 1936): 1.

“Many Tulareans Want to farm With Uncle Sam.” Fresno Bee (Jan. 16, 1938): 1.

“Maps Indicate Location of All Migrant Families.” Fresno Bee (Oct. 21, 1940): 1.

McDean, Harry C. “Dust Bowl Historiography.” Great Plains Quarterly 6.2 (Spring 1986): 117-126.

_____. “The ‘Okie’ Migration as a Sociological Economic Necessity in Oklahoma.” Red River Valley Historical Review 3.1 (1978): 77-92. [on file]

Farm researchers in Oklahoma during the agricultural depression that began in 1920 and lasted until 1941 left a record of the life of all farmers that will show: 1) that the standard of living for nearly all Oklahoma farmers was well below the norm for Americans during the 1920s and 1930s; 2) that in Oklahoma on-the-farm reforms were difficult, if not impossible, to achieve because of the transient character of the farm population; and 3) the volume of the transitory farm population slowed the entire agricultural economy of Oklahoma. Researchers concluded that even Oklahoma’s better farmers lived in comparative poverty.

McEntire, Davis The Labor Force in California: A Study of Characteristics and Trends in Labor Force, Employment, and Occupations in California, 1900-1950. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1952. Print.

McEntire’s brief study lays out the composition and distribution of California’s labor force from 1900-1950. Rapid changes in population moved California from the fifth populous state in 1940 to the second most populous in 1950. Since 1870, migration has largely accounted for over half of California’s population increase. McEntire’s data on California’s labor force follows the growth by decade from the 1900s, with an emphasis on 1940-50. Largely statistical in context, McEntire’s study also provides comparable data for the United States as a whole to better understand the significance of California’s numbers. McEntire explores the labor force by population, sex, age, racial composition, employment, and occupation. To aid in making conclusions about labor force characteristics and trends, he uses the phrase “labor-force flexibility” to distinguish between those who consistently work as breadwinners, and those who work more casually. McEntire further discusses the flexibility of the labor force during times of depression and war and explains the extreme variations in labor force numbers that occur during these abnormal economic times are usually in between times of relatively long-term stability. Racial differences in employment and occupation are also presented, and McEntire analyzes the social implications of using specific discussion of trends in occupational and industrial employment. Based on his findings, McEntire estimated California to add nearly a million more workers to its labor force by the year 1955. McEntire’s work provides important background information integral to understanding the dynamic labor force that exists in California.

McGovern, James R. And a Time for Hope: Americans in the Great Depression. Westport, CT: Greenwood, Praeger, 2000.

Explores the responses of Americans to the severe problems raised by the Great Depression.

“McManus Wants Longer Residence for Relief Work.” Arvin Tiller (Mar. 10, 1939): 4.

McMillan, Robert T. “The Interrelation of Migration and Socio-Economic Status”. Diss.  Louisiana State Univ., 1943.

_____. Migration of Population in Five Oklahoma Townships. Oklahoma A&M University, Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin #271, 1933.

McNickel, R.K. “Migrant Farm Labor.” Editorial Research Reports (April 19, 1950): 277-92. [on file]

The need for seasonal labor in order to produce the food supplies is cause for national concern in this report that explores the hardships of irregular employment and the migratory existence endured by farm laborers and their families. When migrant farm workers are members of a minority, their difficulties are increased placing them within the lowest income group in the country with substandard housing, and little or no medical compensation or legal protection. The children of migrant farm families bear the burden of the ceaseless movement that interrupts schooling and prevents normal social development. Offers suggestions for alleviating the oversupply of migrant farm workers in relation to jobs.

McWilliams, Carey. “California Pastoral.” Antioch Review (March 1942): 103-21. Reprinted in: A Casebook on The Grapes of Wrath, 52-62. Edited by Agnes McNeill Donohue. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968; The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Peter Lisca. New York: Penguin, 1977.

_____. California, the Great Exception. Westport, CT: Greenwood, 1949.

_____. “California’s Migrants [Letter to the editor.].” Forum (Dec. 1939):vii.

In a letter to the editor, Carey McWilliams [link to his articles] (Chief, California Immigration and Housing) rebuts Frank J. Taylor’s [link] (publicist for large-scale California growers) assertion that these growers “are responsible” for the “splendid work” of the Farm Security Administration (FSA). McWilliams argues that the growers have and continue to fight the efforts of the FSA. McWilliams also takes issue with Taylor’s praise of the Associated Farmers. He points out that Taylor fails to mention the documented cases of this organization using “coercion and terrorism”. In addition, McWilliams points out the prejudice of Lee Stone (public health officer for Madera County) towards the migrants. Highlights the public service of Kern County health department’s Dr. Joe Smith, whose county budget is “exceptional, no other rural county in the state provides”.

_____. “Civil Rights in California.” New Republic (Jan. 22, 1940): 108-110. [on file]

_____. Factories in the Field: The Story of Migratory Farm Labor in California. New York: Little, Brown, 1939. Print.

Described as a “strange army,” McWilliams estimates 200,000 workers of various ethnic backgrounds were (at the time of publication) making up California’s agricultural labor force. Different periods in history found Chinese, Japanese, Filipinos, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, Southerners, and Europeans as majorities in the California farm work force.  When one group’s labor was exhausted or conflicts arose within the group, they were simply replaced by another. Though made up of different races and placed in different conditions and circumstance, these “armies” of laborers moved together from crop to crop with few belongings, living in unenviable, makeshift housing.  The constant steam of laborers endured similar challenges as each group before them, striving to survive on very little pay, difficult environmental conditions, and constant prejudices from the land owning farmers.

Believing that the story of farm labor has largely been ignored, McWilliams seeks to illuminate the underlying issues for the racial conflicts in California’s agriculture since the 1870s.  A closer look at the changing patterns of agricultural operations reveals that California farm labor history is deeply intertwined with the areas social problems.  McWilliams believes that California’s history has implications for other areas across the United States.  Farming in California is the most extreme example of the “fascist” control many landowners have created.  Thousands of migrant workers were living desperate lives, trapped by the system, and exploited by employers. McWilliams paints a picture of destitution and desperate people held captive by their circumstances. McWilliams predicts a revolution in California landownership will and must occur in order to create change. He considers the migratory workers plight within the perspective of the entire background of California’s farm labor history. The landowners system is presented as vicious, self-serving, and wasteful.  McWilliams promotes the presence of a strong union in order to combat the plight of the farm laborers in California.  It is argued that until there is a change in ownership, it is unlikely that conditions will improve for the farm labor force in California.

_____. Ill Fares the Land. New York: Arno, 1942.

_____. “The Joads on Strike.” Nation (April 11, 1939): 149, 488-489. [on file]

Reports on the cause and possible outcome of a general strike among migrants in the San Joaquin Valley. It traces their discontent to the recent practice among cotton growers of collectively setting a “base” wage that actually func-tions as the “going” wage, which, despite open gubernatorial opposition and public inquiry into its role in establishing “industrial peonage,” has led to stagnant wages and anger among established migrants accustomed to high wages and recently arrived migrants desperate to improve their lives. When a public inquiry into the system failed to pro-duce a “fair” wage of $1.25 per hundred pounds of cotton harvested compared to the $0.80 previously set by the growers, migrants went on strike, which in turn led to reprisals by growers against them such as eviction from grower-owned housing, harassment of organizing activities, and false allegations of sabotage by migrants. The article concludes that strike will soon end since the governor and much of the public, seeing the unfairness of this practice, has sided with the migrants.

_____. “A Man, A Place, and A Time: John Steinbeck and the Long Agony of the Great Valley in an Age of Depression, Oppression, Frustration, and Hope.” American West 7.3 (1970): 4-8, 38-40, 62-64.

Discusses how Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath accurately reflects the discrimination against “migrants, itinerants, domestics, unemployables, farmers too sick or too poor to participate in the subsidy programs, big families on relief, sharecroppers, and unorganizable labor…” in California during the decade of the 1930s.

_____. On the Ground in the Thirties. Salt Lake City, UT: Peregrine Smith, 1983.

_____.  “What Are We Doing for the Interstate Migrant?” Western Conference on Governmental Problems, Sacramento, CA: State of California, 1939. [on file]

Explains that the problem of what California can do about interstate migration is dependent upon what direct assistance can be obtained from the federal government and what indirect assistance can be obtained from the other states affected.[see also Aaron Sachs’ article on Carey McWilliams: “Civil Rights in the Field: Carey McWilliams as a Public-Interest Historian and Social Ecologist.” Pacific Historical Review 2004 73 (2): 215-248.

Meany, George. “Peonage in California.” American Federationist  (May 1941):5, 31+ [on file]

Describes the poor working conditions of migrant lemon pickers in Ventura County. Though The Grapes of Wrath provoked righteous indignation at every level of society for the plight of migrants and led to reform, the article claims that such reforms have yet to reach Ventura County, where the Teague family and other growers continue to exploit migrant workers in order to provide the nation with lemons, paying and housing them poorly for their labor. In January, these pickers went on strike for higher wages and by May organized under the aegis of the American Federation of Labor, leading growers to refuse their demands and seek ways of breaking the strike, initially soliciting for scabs at Ventura Community College, then among the “Okies,” and most recently by evicting them from camp housing. The article praises the American Federation of Labor for supporting the strikers and earnestly believes that they, having the moral high ground, will eventually succeed in their demands.

“Medicine: Oases for Health.” Time (Jan. 15, 1940):40. [on file]

Mencken, H. L. “The Dole for Bogus Farmers.” American Mercury 39.4 (Dec. 1936):400-408. [on file]

Menig, Harry. “Woody Guthrie: The Oklahoma Years, 1912-1929.” Chronicles of Oklahoma 53.2 (1975): 239-65. [on file]

Popular Depression era folksinger Woody Guthrie grew up in Okemah, Oklahoma, an oil boom town, which had a lasting effect on his life and music. Guthrie’s strong family ties and his small town upbringing made him conscious of the rights of the common man. During the Dust Bowl period and the Depression, his ballad style represents a national voice for the dispossessed in their search for self-respect.

“Migrant Child Gains Attention.” Los Angeles Times (Apr. 25, 1963): 19.

“Migrant Flow Held Peril to State Living Standards.” Bakersfield Californian (Mar. 20, 1940): 1. [on file]

“Migrant Flow Increase Is Reported.” Bakersfield Californian (Nov. 28, 1939):1. [on file]

The influx of migrants into California during October is a result of the cold weather in the Midwest. Reports that the migrants coming to California are predominately white families, and that California’s cotton harvest is being picked in record time due to favorable weather, which means a longer unemployment period for agricultural workers.

“Migrant Health Plan Studied: Tulare County May Get Federal and State Aid for New Set Up.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 23, 1938):20.

Reports that Federal and State aid might be available to provide health support for migrant workers since the present staff is inadequate and a full-time physician is needed.

“Migrant Health Problem Faced: Tulare County Doctor Urges Central Office to Curb Camp Diseases.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 12, 1938):14. [on file]

Dr. Elmo Zumwalt (Tulare County Health Office), states that the “majority of the 10, 000 transients now in Tulare county will remain permanently, and steps must be taken at once to solve health problems they have brought with them . . . . $8000 was spent by the county last year combating typhoid fever alone . . . 98 per cent of the cases being in transient camps   outside incorporated cities, where sanitary facilities were inadequate.”

“Migrant Households in California, 1938.” Monthly Labor Review (Sept. 1939): 622-623.

“Migrant Influx Decrease Noted.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 20, 1938): 9. [on file]

“Migrant Influx Drops During September.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 20, 1939):1.

Reports that “1,163 less migrants entered California during September than month previous.” Notes that Harrison Ward ,Arvin Federal Camp resident, has  been nominated for the post of the typical Oklahoman who will be interviewed by Sue Sanders, author of The Common Herd.  [For text of Ward’s  interview, which is part of the California Odyssey: Dust Bowl Migration Archive, go to: California State University, Bakersfield. California Odyssey: The 1930s Migration to the Southern San Joaquin Valley. [Oral History Interviews & Photographs] 1980.

“Migrant Labor Study Made: W.P.A. Report Asserts Transient Crop Worker’s Plight More Serious.” Los Angeles Times (Oct. 1, 1939):10. [on file]

Works Projects Administration’s (WPA) report finds that dust bowl migrants have been lured to Southwestern states by growers who used “exaggerated advertising” in order to obtain cheap labor. W.P.A. warns Southwestern states that continuing to receive more migrants will further depress wages.

“Migrants.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 21, 1939):13. [on file]

Photographs with captions of social activities in the Arvin and Shafter federal camps.

“Migrants are Becoming Voters.” California: Magazine of the Pacific [Chamber of Commerce] (Oct. 1938): 58, 20-21.

Fearfully reports on the growing involvement of migrants in state politics as new voters. Noting that the registration rates in the counties of the Central Valley are rising faster than expected, the article argues that migrants, having now established a semblance of residency, are registering to vote in record numbers and will undoubtedly vote for any politician who promises to expand relief and pension programs which the state cannot afford. It cites as evidence the recent histories of several migrants in Kern County who came poor and remain so, living hand-to-mouth in ersatz housing and relying on odd jobs and the charity of various state and federal relief agencies while dodging the harassment of the California Citizens Association. None, it reports, expressed any desire for returning to their native states even if paid to do so, and one plans to open a restaurant some day while another is buying land with his meager earnings for a small farm.

“Migrants Called National Problem.” New York Times (Mar. 8, 1940):26. [on file]

Radio debate over migrant problem in California. Speakers include: California farm owner Philip Bancroft, Carey McWilliams, (California Division of Immigration and Housing), and Rexford Guy Tugwell (former director of the Resettlement Administration).

“Migrants Decision Points Out U.S. Responsibility.” Fresno Bee November 26, 1941: 1.

“Migrants Given Jobs in Sonoma.” Kern Herald (Aug. 24, 1939): 1.

“Migrants Mecca.” The Commonwealth [McFarland, CA] (Nov. 12, 1937): 2.

“Migrants Warned to Stay Home by Sue Sanders.” Bakersfield Californian (22 September 1939):1. [on file]

Reports that author and Oklahoma native Sue Sanders argues that incoming migrants are unaware that there is little work in Kern County. Sanders plans to return to Oklahoma in order to start a campaign that will inform those currently living in Oklahoma not come to California.

“Migration and Communicable Diseases.” Weekly Bulletin [California State Department of Public Health] 17.19 (Jun. 4, 1938).

“Migration to and from Farms in 1931.” Monthly Labor Review 35 (1932): 512-513.

Reports a significant rise in the national farming population from 1931 to 1932, particularly in every region except New England and the South Atlantic, the largest in the ten years that the United States Department of Agriculture has been tracking such changes and a break after seven years of continuous decline. It attributes the changes largely to a sharp rise in urban unemployment that has provoked the children of farming families living in the cities to return home.

“Migratory Camp.” Arvin Tiller  (Feb. 3, 1939): 4.

Migratory Camp Newsletters [Selected California federal migratory camps, print and microfilm]

File includes issues of the following  newsletters: “Voice of the Migrant [Marysville Camp], “Voice of the Agricultural Worker, VOTAW [Yuba City Camp], Covered Wagon News [Shafter Camp], Tow Sack Tattler[Arvin Camp], The Migrant Weekly  [on file, separate file labeled “Camp Papers]

“Migratory Camp Plans are Outlined in Report.” Arvin Tiller (Mar. 31, 1939): 1.

“Migratory Labor: A Social Problem.” Fortune (April 19, 1939): 90+.

“Migratory Labor Adds Many Pupils to Public Schools.” Shafter Progress (May 1, 1936): 1.

Migratory Pupils Serious Problem in California Schools.” Wasco News (Jun.19, 1931): 5.

“Migratory Pupils Swell School List.” Wasco News (Oct. 3, 1930): 4.

Miller, Thelma. “What Price Publicity for Kern.” Kern Herald (Aug. 24, 1939): 1.

Mills, Omer. “Health Problems Among Migratory Workers.” United States, Farm Security Administration, Department of Agriculture, Region IX (Jun. 2, 1941): 9pps. [on file]

Mitchell, Don. The Lie of the Land: Migrant Workers and the California Landscape. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1996.

Uses a neo-Marxist framework to investigate the interaction between agriculture, agri-business, and ethnic migrant workers in California. Explores the relationship between migrant workers and growers, beginning with the Wheatland Riot of 1913, and analyzes the conflicting goals between agriculturalists desiring a passive labor force, and migrant workers wishing to maintain a degree of power over their lives through unionization.

Mitchell, Ruth Comfort. Of Human Kindness. New York: D. Appleton-Century, 1940.

Mitchell’s novel, written in response John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath, defends California’s Central Valley growers. For Mitchell’s reasons for writing the novel, see Joan B. Barriga’s article, “Lark on a Barbed-Wire Fence: Ruth Comfort Mitchell’s ‘Of Human Kindness’.”  Steinbeck Newsletter 2.2 (Summer 1989): 3-4. [on file]

“Model Migrant Tow Opened at Woodville.” Fresno Bee (Jul. 31, 1941): 1.

Molander, Ruth Emelie. “A Study of 101 Migrant Families Receiving Assistance Under the Regulations of the California ‘Aid to Needy Children’ Law in Kern County in June, 1940.” M.A. thesis, University of California, 1943. [on file]

Assesses the condition of migrant families in Kern County through an analysis of records relating to their use of public assistance, records to which the author had personal access as a former county employee. Among its findings are that although one-third were single-parent families, three-fourths of their children attended public school and often had average or above average IQ scores. As for their use of public assistance, it finds that only one-third of the families surveyed applied within a year of entering the county, apparently preferring to rely on their earnings than to accept county charity

Monroy, Douglas, et al. Rebirth: Mexican Los Angeles from the Great Migration to the Great Depression. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1999.

Explores the concept of México de afuera, “Mexico outside of Mexico,” in Los Angeles through three studies that analyze the troubled relationship between the Anglo-American and Mexican American communities. Of particular interest is the collision between labor organization by Mexican Americans and Anglo-American interests that led to a series of agricultural strikes during the mid-1930s in which Mexican consuls sided with growers and the anti-union activities of the Los Angeles Police Department led to further strife between police and the ethnic community.

Morgan, Dan. Rising in the West: The True Story of an “Okie” Family from the Great Depression Through the Reagan Years. New York: Knopf, 1992. Print.

Journalist Dan Morgan chronicles the lives of two families, the Tathams and the Tacketts, as they journeyed from Oklahoma to California in the 1930s in search of employment and the promise of a better life.  Morgan makes several comparisons between the Tatham and Tackett’s factual Okie experiences and that of Steinbeck’s fictional Okie experiences.  Morgan’s main focus is on the Tatham family who moved from migrant fruit pickers to middle class prosperity over the course of fifty years.  He discusses the successes and failures that occurred while they created a new life in California.

Led by their father, Oka, the Tatham family placed enormous emphasis on family loyalty, religious conviction, self-sufficiency, and individualism. Morgan explains that hard-work and a devout faith led the Tathams to rise up out of the fields and move on to more prosperous enterprises such as developing housing tracts and irrigation projects, and creating a nursing home empire.  Despite their success, the Tathams remained outsiders who were wary of mainstream America.  They often found that California’s contemporary values went against many of their own moral convictions.  Morgan explains that the Tathams found their religious and political views were best aligned with New Populism and the Reagan Revolution.  Morgan’s account of the Tatham’s gives a sweeping, personal narrative of one family’s struggles and achievements in the midst of great change in America, and provides a detailed history of California and the Depression from a very specific point of view.

Morsberger, Robert E. “Steinbeck and Censorship.” Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies 16 (Fall 2003):29-35. [on file]

“Mrs. F.R. Visits Kern: First Lady Backs U.S. Migrant Aid.” Bakersfield Californian (Apr. 3, 1940): 17. [on file]

“Mrs. Robinson Addresses Mothers in Arvin Camp.” Arvin Tiller (Mar. 31, 1939): 1.

“Nation Challenged on ‘Okies’ Problem.” Los Angeles Times (Mar. 8, 1940):9. [on file]

National Resources Committee. Report of the President’s Committee on Farm Tenancy. Washington, D.C., 1937.

Natanson, Nicholas. The Black Image in the New Deal: The Politics of FSA Photography. Knoxville: University of Tennessee, 1992. [book review on file]

Discusses Resettlement Administration and Farm Security Administration photographs of African-American life from 1935 to 1942. Photographers include Dorothea Lange, Marion Post Wolcott, and Gordon Parks.

Nealand, Daniel. “Archival Vintages for The Grapes of Wrath.” Prologue 40.4 (Winter 2008):18-27. [on file]

Neuberger, Richard L. “Refugees from the Dust Bowl.” Current History (Apr. 1939): 32-5.

“New Camp Ground for Transients.” Shafter Progress (Jan.19, 1934):

“New Migratory Director Appointed Here.” Arvin Tiller (Mar. 3, 1939): 1.

“No Room for Undesirables.” Shafter Progress (Aug. 9, 1935): 8.

“No Work, No Eat Plan Inaugurated in Tulare County.” Fresno Bee (Apr. 17, 1934): 1.

“Nomad Kern Families to be in Films.” Bakersfield Californian (July 22, 1937):1. [on file]

Responding to news reports that the Valley was “overrun” with dust bowl victims, news crews from Life Magazine and Paramount News photographed migrant camps in Shafter, Weedpatch, and Wasco. [on file]

Norris, Thomas D. “Southern Baptists and the ‘Okie’ Migration: A Sectarian Rebirth in California, 1930s-1940s.” Locus 2.1 (Sept. 1989): 35-47. [on file]

Studies how migration to California from the Southwest contributed to the renaissance of the moribund Southern Baptist church. Although Southern Baptists had been in California since 1850 and thrived enough to sponsor missions to China, their strong association with the South limited their membership primarily to transplanted Southerners, who were never more than seven percent of the state population, and became a fatal liability after the Civil War when California sided with the Union, which stigmatized it. Their inability to cooperate with Northern Baptists and the stigma of Southern identity made the church moribund until the 1930s, when migrants from the Southwest, who belonged to Baptist, Pentecostal, and independent churches, created informal “fellowships” the Southern Baptist Convention eventually recognized by the end of the 1940s, thus reviving and strengthening the church in California, particularly in Kern County, despite initial misgivings between migrant and resident members over doctrine, liturgy, and comity.

“Oases for Health.” Time (Jan. 15, 1940): 40.

“Okie and Arkie Festival Music and Dances of Migratory Workers in California.” New York Times (Sept. 21, 1941).

“The Okie as Farm Laborer.” Agricultural History (Jan. 1975): 202-215.

“Okie Is It, Indeed, Just a Four Letter Word?” Fresno Bee (Sept. 30, 1981): 1.

“The Okies.” Time (Apr. 1, 1940). Academic Search Premier. Web. [on file]

“The Okies—A National Problem: As The Grapes of Wrath Movie Stirs New Furor, California Prepares to Ask Federal Government to Assume Responsibility for the Growing Flood of Migrants.” Business Week (Feb. 10, 1940): 16-17. [on file]

“Okies Welcomed.” Business Week 8 (Nov. 1941):29.

Reports that California farmers are experiencing labor shortages and as a result are welcoming migrants from Oklahoma, Texas, and Arkansas. Reports from federal agencies show that migration to California is the highest it has been in five years.

“Oklahoma Finds Okie Organization Paso Robles.” Fresno Bee (Oct. 11, 1968): 1.

“The Ostrich Visits the Courthouse.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 25, 1939): 1.

Otto, John. “Okies, Arkies, Texans: One Man’s Recollections.” California Historical Courier 40 (Dec. 1978): 4-6. [on file]

Presents a brief oral history of the migrant experience based on the recollections of a man who lived it. Solomon Otto, a teacher turned farmer from North Dakota, abandoned his farm in 1934 after suffering multiple crop failures and headed westward as a migrant laborer, passing through Montana, Idaho, and Oregon until arriving in California, where he and his wife traversed the state in following the harvest and endured much the same living conditions as other migrants. His anecdotes often provide an alternative view of why migrants came and behaved as they did. For example, he recalls that the “middlemen” who hired migrants intentionally overstated the demand for labor in California in order to drive down wages, which contributed as much to the migratory pull as letters sent home by migrants. He also notes that migrants, in keeping with their heritage of thrift, preferred older automobiles, the “jalopies” so often derided in the press, because they were easier and cheaper to maintain.

“Over 3,000 People Live Here During the Year.” Woodville Farm Worker’s Community News (Jun. 15, 1942): 1. Note: Tulare County Library, Visalia. Vertical Folder, History Room.

“Pacific Rivers Pushed Higher by New Rains.” Daily Oklahoman [Oklahoma City] (Feb. 14, 1938): 1.

Packard, Rose Marie. “The Los Angeles Border Patrol.” Nation (Mar. 4, 1936): 295. [on file]

Packard writes a letter to the editors of Nation complaining about the positioning of Los Angeles police officers at key entrance points into California, which she sees as a “serious stab at our civil liberties.” She claims she and her husband spoke with a Los Angeles police officer stationed at a highway entrance to California near Blythe. This officer told her that “[the LA officers] were down here at the orders of the chief of police of Los Angeles.” She argues that the presence of these officers is not only a drain on the taxpayers, but a violation of individual constitutional rights.

Patch, B.W. The Problem of the Migrant Unemployed. Washington, D.C.: Editorial Research Reports, 1939.

“Patrol Aim Commended.” Los Angeles Times (Mar. 1, 1936):11. [on file]

Reports that attempts by the Los Angeles police border patrol to turn back “indigent transients” from the east has been successful  and has begun to receive support from the Long Island Automobile Club and the North River Insurance Company of San Francisco. Claims that a significant amount of juvenile delinquency within Los Angeles is due to transient children entering Los Angeles from other states. Gov. Martin of Oregon complains that the Los Angeles border patrol has been denying Oregon citizens entrance into California.

Pedro, Isabel. “Teaching the Migratory: The Problem of the Teacher of Migrant Pupils, As Surveyed by Education Committee of the Classroom Teachers Department, Central Section, CTA, 1938-1939.” Sierra Educational News (Mar. 1938): 34-36. [on file]

Peeler, David P. Hope Among Us Yet: Social Criticism and Social Solace in Depression America. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1987.

“Penny, Lucretia.” “Pea-Pickers’ Child.” Survey Graphic 24 (July 1935): 352-53. [on file]

Pew, Thomas W. “Rte. 66.” American Heritage 28.5 (1977): 24-33.

_____. “Boley, Oklahoma: Trial in American Apartheid.” The American West (Nov. 1980): 14-21, 55-6, 63.

Phelps, Winston. “Uncle Same Has His Own Refugee Problem, the Thousands of Homeless Farm Families.” Providence Journal (May 21, 1939):II,1. [on file]

Sympathetically reports on the condition of migrant farmers, the causes for their displacement, and the various programs that the Farm Security Administration has created to improve their lives. Of particular interest are the new farming cooperatives that it has created in various parts of the country to entice migrant farmers to settle by offering them subsidized housing, livestock, land, and profit-sharing schemes.

Pike, Roy M. “Californians—Wake Up!” California Journal of Development (Jul. 1936): 12-13, 42-44. [on file]

Addresses California farmers as “business men” whom he admonishes to form a united front and to realize that they are accountable to the government and their employees. Pike also encourages his farmer colleagues to acquaint themselves with the elected local officials of their wards, precincts, cities, and counties.

“Police Take Up Duty On State Lines.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 4, 1936):1. [on file]

Reports that in California a State-wide program led by Chief of Police James Davis has been enforced that directs Los Angeles police officers to blockade the main border  entrances into the State in hopes of halting those migrants  with a criminal backgrounds. Argues that turning back migrants will help to reduce the recent increase in crime in Los Angeles. Negatively portrays migrants as criminals and disease-carriers. Argues that the state lines of California must be protected from an influx of migrants, some of whom are “criminals and disease carrying ne’er-do-wells”. Los Angeles police officers will establish blockades on railway and highway entrances in order to turn back migrants without a purpose for coming into the State.

Pomeroy, Harold E. “Transients in California.” Sacramento: State Relief Administration of California, 1937. [on file}

Surveys the size and condition of the transient population in California by investigating its presence in the largest cities and presents proposals for its care by public agencies. It finds that transients are usually those displaced by economic change such as natural disasters and mechanization and that the continued public neglect of their poverty poses a substantial threat to the state. It therefore urges renewed requests for federal aid, expansion of county assistance to improve their health and employment, and greater uniformity in settlement laws to allow them a fairer chance at establishing residency.

“Poor Housing In Sutter and Yuba Is Investigated.” Sacramento Bee (Apr.  23, 1940). [on file]

Reports that a legislative committee finds the living conditions of migrant workers living in Yuba County are deplorable.  According to his findings, Merle D. Collins, Yuba County farm advisor, “there is a possible location of between 300 and 400 farmers from the Midwest sections who ‘need land as well as good homes at low cost”.

Potter, Ellen C. “The Problem of the Transient.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. (Nov. 1934): 66-73, 176.

Potter, Gladys L. “Specific Suggestions for the Organization of Instruction  Emergency Schools.” Conference on Education of Children of Seasonal Workers. Fresno State College, Fresno, CA, 10 December 1938. [on file]

Potter, Jewel. “Teacher and Migrant: The Teacher’s Problem in a Migratory Situation.” Sierra Educational News 34 (Oct. 1938):26. [on file]

“Preferred Life in Oklahoma to Term in Jail.” Wasco News (Jan. 8, 1932): 1.

“Public is Shown Migrant Camp at Farmersville.” Fresno Bee (Mar. 6, 1941).

“Ragged, Hungry, Broke, Harvest Workers Live in Squalor [sic].” San Francisco News (Mar. 10, 1936):3. [on file]

Two of Dorothea Lange’s Migrant Mother images accompany the article. See related articles in the San Francisco News.

Rasmussen, Cecilia. “LAPD Blocked Dust Bowl Migrants at State Borders.” Los Angeles Times (9 March 2003): B4. [on file]

Discusses how “Okies” were perceived in Los Angeles during the era when Los Angeles Police Chief James Edgar Davis’s ordered a blockade to keep transients from entering the California. Reports that the blockade was ruled illegal after the Los Angeles Police Department barred film director John Langan from crossing the border.  Sympathetically reports on Okies living in a Los Angeles homeless camp called Hooverville.

“Red Cross Drive to Aid Victims in Drought Area.” Wasco News (Jan. 30, 1931): 1.

Reeves, Scott. “Okies are Major Cultural Force in State.” Tracy Press, (Apr. 19, 1989):C-14. [on file]

Reports on a presentation by James Gregory, an assistant professor of history at the University of California, Berkeley, which argues contra Steinbeck that migrants from Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri have not only refused to shed their regional cultural proclivities but have profoundly affected the culture of the southern San Joaquin Valley. Evidence for this change includes the proliferation of evangelical churches, the genesis of country music, and even the popularity of chicken fried steak and Dr. Pepper in Bakersfield.

Reuss, Richard A. “Woody Guthrie and His Folk Tradition.”Journal of American Folklore 83. 329 (Jul. – Sept. 1970): 273-303. [on file]

Surveys Guthrie’s life and work, paying particular attention to how he came to prominence through his connection with Leftist intellectuals, the rough and spontaneous nature of his work, and his protean nature within the context of folk music, especially in light of his innovation and the fluidity of what constitutes folk music.

“Refugees From ‘Dust Bowl’ Are Relief Problems.” Berkeley Gazette (Jul. 27, 1937): Sec. 2; 1.

Reichard, Alice. “California’s Adult Children.” Country Gentleman (Feb. 1940): 34-5. [on file]

One California schoolteacher’s opinion that the majority of migrant families in her community are irresponsible adult children who happily take advantage of the state’s relief program. Stereotypes all migrant farm families as “footloose, jobless” slackers. Her classroom is overcrowded with children of migrant laborers whom she asserts are of low moral character and compares them to the children from “our established resident citizenry” whose parents taught them the “virtues of work and decent living.” Concludes that these people are lazy, illiterate, and ungrateful. Recommends that the state re-examine the “liberal cash dole” disbursed by the state. Relief has failed the migrants and has become a burden to the taxpayer. For similar stereotypical comments, see Ester Canter’s (64).

“Released WPA Workers Spurn Cotton Chopping Jobs.” Fresno Bee (May 20, 1936): 1.

“Relief Appeals Heard by Governor Stanford.” Arizona Republic (Oct.31, 1937).

“Relief Camps to Close as Conditions Improve.” Wasco News (Apr. 1, 1932): 7.

“Relief for Needy.” Wasco News (Dec. 5, 1930): 10.

“Relief Numbers Drop Sharply in Tulare County.” Fresno Bee (Oct. 10, 1935): 1.

“Relief Slash Urged to Curb Migrant Horde.” San Francisco Examiner (Mar. 3, 1939): 32.

“Report Asks Aid in Home States for Migrants.” Bakersfield Californian (Apr. 20, 1940): 9.

Ribuffo, Leo P. The Old Christian Right: The Protestant Far Right from the Great Depression to the Cold War. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1983. Print.

Ribuffo’s The Old Christian Right is a well-researched examination of the “far right” in American society from the 1920s-1950s.  Ribuffo presents the complex and often confusing lives and careers of Dudley Pelley, Gerald B. Winrod, and Gerald L.K. Smith. These three anti-Semitic, Protestant, and politically active “villains” all gained prominence during this time and are all considered “extremists” because of the political and religious views they held.  Ribuffo presents four main themes that stood out from studying the biographies of each of these men. First, he argues that each of their careers showed that conservative extremism often intermingled with the sentiments of mainstream America. Second, Ribuffo explains that the “far right” of the 1930s was not a result of the economic crisis, but rather was a continuation of the 1920s mentality when many questions about faith, morality, and purpose arose. Ribuffo argues that these past concerns deeply affected the way in which Americans responded to the Great Depression.

The third theme Ribuffo addresses is the Brown Scare, which he describes as the militant counterattack from liberals against “far right” political activists.  Fearing a fascist threat, many on the political left favored restrictions on the extremists’ right to speak and assemble.  The Roosevelt administration arrested and prosecuted agitators like Pelley and Wimrod, which in turn, set a precedent for suppression that continued on into the Cold War. The fourth theme examines the concept of extremism as a part of American intellectual history.  Ribuffo argues today’s New Christian Right derives from far right extremist ideas that began to take place in the 1930s and were then generally accepted by the 1950s.  Ribuffo makes use of the writings and activities of the three men, Pelley, Winrod, and Smith as he presents his findings.

Riney-Kehrberg, Pamela. Rooted in Dust: Surviving Drought and Depression in Southwestern Kansas. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 1994.

Focuses on some three-quarters of the population in southwestern Kansas who remained on their farms during the Great Depression and toughed it out.

Rintoul, William T. “The Banning of The Grapes of Wrath [Part One].” California Crossroads 5 (Jan. 26, 1963): 5, 4-6. [on file]

Analyzes the public reaction to The Grapes of Wrath in Kern County and its in removing the book from county schools and libraries. Although Gretchen Knief, the head librarian for the Kern County Free Library, favorably re-viewed the book before its general release, public reaction to it quickly grew negative as newspaper editorials as-serted that its depiction of medical care for migrants did not match hospital records and that the burden of cost for that care fell to the county with little state or federal subsidy. Further editorials bolstered this charge throughout the summer of 1939, and when front-page news broke on August 12 that the Kansas City Board of Education had voted to remove the novel from public libraries, the Kern County Board of Supervisors followed suit, voting four to one in favor of removing it from school and public libraries because it slandered residents as “low, ignorant, profane and blasphemous.”

_____. “The Banning of The Grapes of Wrath [Part Two].” California Crossroads 5 (Feb. 1963):26-28.

_____. “The Grapes of Gladness, et al.” California Crossroads (Apr. 1963): 10-12.

Rorty, James. “Lettuce—with American Dressing.” Nation (May 15, 1935): 140, 575-76. [on file]

Round, Philip H. The Impossible Land: Story and Place in California’s Imperial Valley. Albuquerque: New Mexico Press, 2008. Print.

In a study of the relationship between nature and storytelling, Philip Round argues that stories create in the imagination something that is almost tangible and has the ability to bring a place into being. Round’s The Impossible Land tells the complicated story of California’s Imperial Valley.  Located in and around the southeast corner of California, the Imperial Valley was initially a dry and barren land where humans and harsh environments clashed together. In the 1920s, irrigation changed all this and created one of the richest agricultural regions in California.  Tales of prosperity in the Imperial Valley spread across the nation, and inspired both books and movies.  It also attracted an influx of immigrants from around the world who were willing to work in the agricultural industry.  Despite its popularity, the Imperial Valley has also had very real hardships.  Over the years, the area has been consistently ranked at the bottom of California counties in education, employment, and opportunity.  Thirty percent of families in the Imperial Valley live below the poverty line, and its unemployment rate ranges from 24 to 31 percent.

Round explains that though the Imperial Valley is not easily definable, many of the stories revolving around the region convey a relationship between an individual and a particular landscape at a particular point in time.  After briefly discussing the geography and history of the region, Round then presents stories he overheard or read about and discusses the tales that bring California’s Imperial Valley to life.  The styles and subjects of the stories are varied and begin with three texts that trace the evolving image of the Imperial Valley.  The second half of the book deals with memoirs of dust bowl refugees and the experiences of Japanese, Mexicans, and Native Americans who lived in the area during different time periods.

Rowell, Edward J. “The Child in the Migratory Camp.” California Children [California State Department of Social Welfare] 1.9 (Sept. 15, 1938):1-7. [on file]

_____. “Drought Refugee and Labor Migration to California in 1936.” Monthly Labor Review 43.6 (Dec. 1936): 1355-1363. [on file]

Reports that from 1935-1936 there were 71,047 migrants entering California and that most of the migrants were coming from drought areas such as Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, Arkansas, and Missouri. Discusses a study conducted by the State Relief Administration in California that found migration to California increased during months when agricultural labor is needed the most, and also noted that cotton harvests in the San Joaquin Valley were a significant source of labor for the Dust Bowl migrants since most of migrants originated from cotton-raising States. Found that most of these migrants were predominantly white.

Ryan, Philip E. Migration and Social Welfare: An Approach to the Problem of the Non-settled Person in the Community. New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 1940. [excerpt][on file]

Saiz, Lisa R. “A Study of Southwestern Migrant Women of the 1930s and 1940s.”  Master’s Thesis. California State University, Dominquez Hills, 1940. [excerpt on file]

“San Joaquin Is Unable to Aid Reliefers.” Sacramento Bee (Mar. 9, 1940). [on file]

Reports that San Joaquin County clients of the State Relief Administration (SRA) and various other labor organizations picketed the forty-percent cut in SRA relief checks. They were told that “private charity is the only remaining hope for persons in need.” W. R Ruggles, of the San Joaquin Board of Supervisors, stated that “If we attempt to help through the county welfare department in any way, we will make our own indigent and needy suffer. We are deeply sympathetic but we just have not the money for what ou have requested and we have no way of raising it.”

Sanders, Arthur. “What’s Going on Around Here?” Oildale Press (Aug. 31, 1939): 4.

Sanders, Sue. “Woman Finds Migrants Clean, Ambitious Folk.” Los Angeles Times (Oct. 15, 1939): 8. [on file]

Saunders, Mae. “Authorities Predict Increase in Migrant Flow to Kern Soon.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 7, 1939): 1, 13. [on file]

If migration to California continues there will be 50,000 more middle-westerners in October than last year.

_____. “Cotton’s Social Problem Is Studied by Kern County in Vigorous Challenge.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 11, 1939):1. [on file]

Reports that cotton has inspired Midwesterners to migrate to Kern County, and that due to the unsanitary living conditions in migrant camps infant mortality is on the rise. As cotton growth expands so will the migrant population.

_____. “National Problem of Migratory Workers Center in California.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 18, 1939): 9.

_____. “Growers Are Providing Housing for Workers.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 16, 1939): 1. [on file]

Examines the treatment of migratory workers by growers in Kern County.Reports that the Kern County Farm Bureau drafted a resolution on what to do about housing for migrant workers. The Bureau opposes county, state, and federal camps, and favors instead that growers provide migrant housing such as the camp built by grower Joseph Di Giorgio, Jr. for his migratory workers.

_____.”Kern Growers Praised for Measures to Help Agricultural Labor.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 22, 1939):1. [on file]

Examines the treatment of migratory workers by growers in Kern County.Reports that the Kern County Farm Bureau drafted a resolution on what to do about housing for migrant workers. The Bureau opposes county, state, and federal camps, and favors instead that growers provide migrant housing such as the camp built by grower Joseph Di Giorgio, Jr. for his migratory workers.

_____. “Machine Age Is Seen as Factor in Migration to Western Coast.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 5, 1939):1. [on file]

Reports that migrants are coming to California in hopes of finding work and to escape the harsh winters of their home countries. Many migrants have been forced to leave their previous homes as a result of mechanization; tenant farmers and sharecroppers were being replaced by tractors and other farm machinery. Most migrants upon arriving in Kern County hope to find work, but because work is scarce many migrants have to apply for help with the Farm Security Administration.

_____. Medical Provision for Families Proves Serious.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 16, 1939):1, 13. [on file]

Examines how illness affects the financial health of  migrant families. The Agricultural Workers Health and Medical Association provides care for ill migratory workers and their families.

_____. “Migrants Complicate Health Problem in Kern County.” Bakersfield Californian (:Aug. 14, 1939):1. [on file]

Migrants receive medical through the Farm Security Administration’s new Agricultural Workers Health and Medical Association, which began in October 1938. The will save Kern County $100,000 in medical costs annually. Provides statistics on the health of Kern County migrants.

_____.”Migrants Regard Sue Sanders as True Friend.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 21, 1939):12. [on file]

Briefly reports that Sue Sanders, Oklahoma native, author, and  former cotton picker,  has been visiting various federal camps including the one in Arvin, California, with the intention to provide help for her fellow Oklahomans.

_____. “Migratory Camp Gives Haven for Wanderers.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 18, 1939):1, 11. [on file]

Finds that most migrants living in the Shafter and Arvin, California migratory camps enjoy sanitary living conditions, charitable neighbors, and washing machines.

_____. “National Problem of Migratory Workers Center in California.” Bakersfield Californian (Aug. 3, 1939): 1,21.

Reports that there are more migrants entering California than jobs available within the State. Bakersfield, California receives the greatest amount of migrants during the winter months, and migrants entering Bakersfield during the winter hope to find work picking cotton. Writers and filmmakers have flocked to Kern County to report on the migrants’ condition, but failed to recognize the programs that have been developed by the Works Progress Administration (WPA), Farm Security Administration (FSA), and growers have done on behalf of the migrants.

_____.”Pioneer Arrives with Message for Migrants.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 18, 1939):1, 17. [on file]

Reports that Sue Sanders, Texas and Oklahoma pioneer and author of “The Common Heard,” is visiting Oklahoma migrants in the Arvin and Shafter camps in California.  Sanders believes that migrants should leave California and go back home, and claims that most migrants are upset by John Steinbeck’s portrayal of them.

_____.”Sanders Is Active in Camp.” Bakersfield Californian (Nov. 20, 1939):1, 23. [on file]

Reports that author and pioneer Sue Sanders has formed “Okie Farm Hour” clubs at the Shafter and Arvin migratory camps in California in order to educate migrants about budgets, current farming techniques, and crop diversification. Sanders believes these skills will motivate migrants to return to their  home countries.

_____. “Woman Finds Migrants Clean, Ambitious Folk.” Los Angeles Times (15 October 1939):8.

Reports that author Sue Sanders has been investigating the migrant camps in Arvin and Shafter, and contrary to the negative press surrounding the Dust Bowl migrants, the migrants Sanders have encountered are clean and hard-working.

“Says State Can Absorb Migrants.” Berkeley Daily Gazette (30 November 1939):1. [on file]

Reports that Harrison S. Robinson, Oakland’s chairman of migratory labor problems, told California State Chamber of Commerce that California is able and willing to accept Dust Bowl refugees with the hope that the refugees will become “good Californians.”

“School at Arvin Migratory Camp Teaches Varied Work.” Bakersfield Californian (Apr. 21, 1941:)2-3. [on file]

Schuler, Loring A. “The Dust Bowl Moves to California.” California: Magazine of the Pacific 26.8 (Aug. 1938): 5-9, 30-33. [on file]

Luridly describes the socioeconomic impact of migrants on the southern Central Valley. In interviews with various county administrators and inspectors, it excoriates migrants for abusing the charity of taxpayers, creating a public health crisis by their squalor, and undermining local morality with their incest, the latter attested to by no less than the Director of Public Health for Madera County, as it warns that as residents they will be able to vote their corrup-tion into law. The article blames their presence on the expansion of cotton cultivation in California, which is labor intensive and has historically paid well relative to other states, and the unrestrained generosity of state and federal agencies which draws migrants by the promise of cash aid and free public services. While it reports on the entire southern Central Valley, it is particularly attentive to Kern County both as a microcosm of the problem and for its campaign petitioning Congress to deny federal aid to interstate migrants.

Schwartz, Harry. Seasonal Farm Labor in the United States. New York: Columbia University Press, 1945.

Scudder, K.J. “How California Anchors Drifting Boys.” Survey; Social, Charitable, Civic: A Journal of Constructive Philanthropy (Mar. 15, 1933): 101-105. [on file]

Approvingly describes a camp that is succeeding at reforming delinquent migrant boys. Located in San Dimas Can-yon of Los Angeles County, Forestry Camp No. 10 houses approximately thirty such boys, many of whom ran away from home because of family problems, joined the westward migration, and resorted to petty criminality for survival after arriving poor and homeless in the West. The camp uses work, sports, and incentive-based discipline rather than incarceration and corporal punishment to guide them away from hardened criminality and has had remarkable success in turning around the roughly hundred boys who have passed through it, with only a handful remaining incorrigible enough to warrant removal. Their work consists not only of camp maintenance but also public works projects such as the construction of a service road into the mountains, while good behavior earns privileges such as trips to the city and credit towards release from the camp and a return trip to home.

Sears, Mary. “The Nurse and the Migrant.” The Pacific Coast Journal of Nursing 37.3 (Mar. 1941): 144-6. [on file]

Personal account of a nurse’s two year experience working in the migrant field for the FSA’s Agricultural Workers Health and Medical Association in California and Arizona.

_____. “The Flat-Tired, Flat-Tired-People.” Californians 7.2 (1989): 14-17, 5.

Author recalls her experiences working as a public health nurse for the FSA assisting migrant families in California from 1938-1944.

“Seek to Aid Employer and Farm Laborer.” Shafter Progress (May 10, 1935): 1.

[SERA]. Shafter Progress (May 31, 1935): 1.

“SERA Camp Is Planned Here.” Shafter Press (May 9, 1935).

Shafter California Government Camp’s Weekly News. December 9, 1939. [excerpt on file]

“Shafter Migrants Elect Camp Government.” Kern County Union Labor Journal (Aug. 11, 1939): 1.

Shahn, Ben and Margaret R. Weiss. Photographer: An Album from the Thirties. New York: Da Capo, 1973.

Shanks, Colin D. “The Drought: Its Effects on California.” California Journal of Development (Sept. 1936):22-23, 33. [on file]

“Sharp Increase in Patronage of County Hospitals.” Wasco News (July 21, 1933): 2. [on file]

According to a new state report, there has been a sharp increase of patients within California county hospitals during 1931-32 due to “economic conditions and unemployment”. Reports that the “county hospital . . . continues to assume an ever increasing role in the present day social welfare problem”.

Sherman, Jacqueline G. Oklahomans in California During the Depression Decade 1931-1941. Diss. UC Los Angeles, 1970.  [excerpt on file]

Shindo, Charles J. Dust Bowl Migrants in the American Imagination. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 1997. Print.

Cultural historian Charles Shindo examines how public memory of the dust bowl migration has been dominated by work artists and reformers produced who, at the time, were more motivated by their own cultural interests and ideological agendas than in understanding the actual migrant experiences. Photographers, novelists, filmmakers, and folk singers all produced artistic works that created the public image of the Great Depression that most are familiar with today.  Shindo argues that the combination of Dorothea Lange’s photograph Migrant Mother (1936), John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath (1939), John Ford’s film version of the same (1940), and Woody Guthrie’s Dust Bowl Ballads (1940) depicted the dustbowl migrants as the “quintessential depression victims.”  Artists overwhelmingly emphasized the victimization of the dust bowl migrants, choosing to present artistic renderings that garnered sympathy towards displaced and oppressed migrants. Shindo believes that by relying on each other’s authority, together the artists and reformers were able to authenticate their representations of the migrants and fully integrate their images into the public’s mind.

In contrast to the familiar and pervasive images of the dust bowl migrants, Shindo instead contends that the actual migrant experience was very different and often times contradictory to popular artists’ depictions of them.  Rather than becoming a rural proletariat, as was the aim of many reformers, the migrants instead became a part of the conservative movement in California and served more as guardians of traditional values than proponents of progressive justice. Shindo explains the aim of his study is to understand how the creation of a migrant as a victim came into being.  He explores the historical context and examines individual artists to understand why only a few, specific voices have dominated the public’s understanding of the dust bowl migrants. Separated into ten sections, the author first discusses the migrants and the New Deal reformer’s attitudes towards them. Four sections are allocated to Lange, Steinbeck, Ford, and Guthrie, all who made significant contributions to the creation of the image of victimized dust bowl migrants.  The rest of the sections consist of a photo essay with well-known images of the migrants, an examination of folklorists and the persistence of dust bowl representations, and a discussion on the author’s methods of historical research.

_____. “The Dust Bowl Myth.” Wilson Quarterly 24.4 (2000): 25-30.

Shockley, Martin Staples. “The Reception of The Grapes of Wrath in Oklahoma.” American Literature 15.4 (Jan. 1944): 351-361. Reprinted in: A Casebook on The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Agnes McNeill Donohue. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968.

Sidel, James E. A Study of Child Labor Among Migrants on the Pacific Coast. 1939. [excerpt] [on file]

Sillen, Samuel. “Censoring The Grapes of Wrath.” New Masses (Sept. 12, 1939): 23-24. Reprinted in: A Casebook on The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Agnes McNeill Donohue. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968.

Simon, Bryant and William Deverell. “Come Back, Tom Joad: Thoughts on a California Dreamer.” California History 79.4 (Winter 2000/2001): 181-191. [on file]

Discusses how the character of Tom Joad, protagonist in John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, has been interpreted in literature, film, and music. Focuses on the work of musicians Woody Guthrie and Bruce Springsteen.

“Six Kern County Projects Given SRA Approval.” Daily Midway Driller (Dec. 12, 1934): 1.

“Slaves were Fed.” Arizona Labor Journal 24 (Mar. 24, 1938):1-2.

Attacks the rise of “farmer organizations” in Arizona’s Salt River Valley that, having failed to pay cotton pickers and other harvesters fairly while providing clandestine support for suppressing efforts by harvesters to air their grievances, are directly responsible for their present poverty and poor health.

Snyder, Fred. “Battle to Curb Migrant Invasion: Citizens Organize Against Hord’s Influx.” San Francisco Examiner (Mar. 3, 1939): 32. [on file]

Describes how the Citizens’ Association led by Bakersfield resident, Thomas W. McManus has decreased the influx of dust-bowl migrants. It reports that the Citizens’ Association sent investigators into the field to discover the reason behind the influx of migrants. The association claimed that migrants were attracted to California’s relief, which is the highest of any state with the exception of New York. In addition, farm wages were higher than anywhere in the country.

_____. “California Facing Desperate Crisis in Migrant Influx.” San Francisco Examiner (Feb. 27, 1939): 1

Argues that California can no longer absorb migrants. The need for agricultural laborers is limited and incoming migrants have put a financial burden on the State. Blames the State Relief Administration, Farm Security Administration (FSA), and Works Progress Administration (WPA) for attracting out of state migrants. Furthermore, the unemployed migrants are susceptible to radicalism and are connected to the communist Worker’s Alliance.

_____. “Red Drive to Recruit Migrants.” San Francisco Examiner (Feb. 28, 1939): 12.

Accuses Worker’s Alliance members such as, Louretta Adams (only registered communist in Kern County), of targeting migrants in the Central Valley.

“Solons Will Visit Kern In Probe on Migrants.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 7, 1940): front page. [on file]

Sonnenman, Toby and Rick Steigmeyer. Fruit of My Fields: Okie Migrants in the West. Moscow, ID: University of Idaho, 1992.

Based on first-hand accounts of Okie fruit-pickers in the West, discusses how Dust Bowl migrants often replaced Asian and Mexican fruit-pickers. After World War II, these migrants were  gradually replaced by Mexican laborers willing to work for cheaper wages. Poses a romantic view of the Okie life and laments that their way of life is disappearing.

Spearman, A.D. “Steinbeck’s ‘Grapes of Wrath’ Branded as Re Propaganda by Father A.D. Spearman: Moral Unreality in Portrayal of ‘Okies’.” San Francisco Examiner (June 4, 1939):12. [on file]

“Squatters Camps Go: Tulare Migrants Move to Towns.” Fresno Bee (Oct. 12, 1939): 1.

“Squatters’ Camp Hit: Ban Asked in California.” Los Angeles Times (Sept. 15, 1935): 7. [on file]

“S.R.A Survey of Penniless Migrants Seen Near Collapse.” Los Angeles Times (20 April 1939): 4. [on file]

Briefly reports that the State Relief Administration’s survey to investigate relief for unemployed migrants is in danger of being eliminated, and also reports that the Federal government is hesitant to further fund the survey.

Stanley, Jerry. Children of the Dust Bowl: The True Story of the School at Weedpatch Camp. Crown, 1992.

Uses oral and written sources to recount the extraordinary story of Leo Hart, a local high school guidance counselor who transformed an empty piece of land into a school for migrant children living at the Arvin Federal Camp and later sought to become the Kern County Superintendent of Schools to continue championing their cause. For Stanley’s previous articles and manuscript on this topic, see below.

Stanley, Jerry. “Children of The Grapes of Wrath: A Handmade School Saved Okie Kids for a Happy Ending.” American West 23.2 (Mar.-Apr. 1986): 22-28. [on file]

Tells the story of the Arvin Federal Emergency School through interviews with its founder and former students. Elected Superintendent of Kern County Schools in 1939, Leo Hart built the school in September 1940 using nothing but donations of building materials and the labor of his students, the children of the Weedpatch migrant labor camp, whom local taxpayers and teachers dismissed as an “uneducable” and “shiftless lot” because of their shabby dress, poor health, and uncouth culture. His unconventional school taught its students not only literacy and mathematics but also home economics, husbandry, construction, and even aircraft mechanics after the camp superintendent donated a functioning surplus C-47 airplane and his expertise. Although the school eventually combined with another public school in 1944, thus ending its exclusivity for migrant students, it gave many of its students hands-on experience and poise that translated into successful lives while its success transformed community hostility towards the endeavor into eager acceptance.

_____. “Educating the Children of The Grapes of Wrath.” California Historical Courier 32.4 (Aug.1980): 6-8.

Based on Stanley’s interview with Leo B. Hart, Kern County Superintendent of Public Instruction and founder of the Arvin Emergency School in Kern County, California. Hart recounts how the school was founded to educate migrant who experienced prejudice in the public schools. Hart constructed a curriculum of both academic and vocational studies. As a result, the children learned reading, writing and arithmetic but also life skills such as typing, mechanics, farming, cooking, and sewing. The children along with the teachers and principal built the school, grew their own food, cared for livestock and constructed a swimming pool.

_____. and Susan McClogan. Interview with Leo B. Hart. (Feb. 2, 1977). [on file]

Mr. Hart recalls his experiences as head counselor in the Kern County High School system in the late 1920s and 1930s where he began to recognize the special needs of the children of the dust bowl migrants who were shuffled aside and ignored by local schools. In 1938, as Kern County Superintendent, Hart set up an experimental special education program in the Shafter Camp in order to help these migrant children develop skills needed to contribute to society.

Starr, Kevin. Endangered Dreams: The Great Depression in California. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.

Argues that the Great Depression provoked a violent crisis in Californian politics by eliciting strongly diverging reactions from the Left and the Right over the future of the state’s economic order, particularly regarding labor rights and poverty relief, that was relieved only by the introduction of more moderate reform plans such as Dr. Francis Townsend’s “ham and eggs” pension scheme and New Deal public works projects.

“Starvation in Cotton Camps Seen in Survey by Governor.” Arizona Daily Star (Mar. 22, 1939): 3 E0A.

Governor Stanford and Dr. Coit I. Hughes, state superintendent of public health, inspected the Waddell and other camps located several miles outside of Phoenix. The Governor sent nurses, food and medical supplies, to aid the pea pickers living in these camps. According to health authorities, many of the residents were “on the verge of starvation” and suffering from smallpox, measles, whooping cough and typhoid fever. [See article reporting on the pea pickers protesting at the state capital a week earlier.]

“State Asks Roosevelt for U.S. Aid in Migrant Crisis.” San Francisco Examiner (Feb.16, 1939): 1. [on file]

Reports that California Representative Elliot makes a plea to President Roosevelt for federal aid in order to help with the flood of migrants coming into California. Elliot argues that the migrant problem is a national problem and suggests ways federal government can contribute towards helping the migrants currently in California.

“State Chamber Committee Studies Valley Conditions.” Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 15, 1940): 15.

“State Has Over 200,000 Jobless; Kern About 3,000.” Wasco News (Oct. 30, 1931): 6.

State Hunger March Committee.  “Fight Against Starvation, Slave Wages, and Wage Cuts [Flyer]”. Los Angeles Section of the Unemployed Council. Los Angeles, 6924 Compton Ave. [on file]

Flyer urges agricultural workers to present their demands in Sacramento, California to Governor Rolph and the State Legislature on January 10, 1933. The flyer claims that in “Vacaville, Cal., agricultural workers on strike are the victims of a bloody alliance of bosses, Klansmen and police, who fed the hungry workers with tear gas, bullets, clubs, and poisonous paint, when they fought a wage cut of $1.50 to $1.25 per day.”

“State May Get Migrant Aid.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 19, 1939):16. [on file]

Reports that President Franklin D. Roosevelt has called for a plan must to address the California’s financial burden due to the influx of transients entering California. The Works Progress Administration (WPA) has been appointed to investigate the problem.

“State Survey Reveals Most Tulare County Needy Are Americans.” Fresno Bee (May 14, 1934): 1.

“State’s Education Plan Aid to Unemployment.” Wasco News (Feb. 12, 1932): 3.

Statewide Committee on the Migrant Problem (Migrant Committee, California State Chamber of Commerce). Migrants: A National Problem and Its Impact on California. California State Chamber of Commerce, 1940.

Stein, Walter J. California and the Dust Bowl Migration. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood, 1973. Print.

California’s prosperity has largely thrived due to the continuous stream of migrants into the region.  Stiern presents a study, which seeks to explain why Californians rejected migrants from the south central states (Oklahoma, Texas, Missouri, Arkansas) in the 1930s, and finds that interstate migration played an increasingly important role in California’s development from 1850-1930.  The Gold Rush brought many people into California and created an awareness of California’s abundant natural resources.  Newcomers continued to pour in, no longer seeking gold, but settlement.  By 1900, California boasted 1.5 million residents with the majority being transplants from across the nation.  The population continued to rise at an even more impressive rate up until the depression years.

It was widely known that California’s prosperity was dependent upon this constant influx of newcomers. California welcomed and encouraged these people into their folds, recognizing their importance to California’s prosperity. Stiern moves on to the Depression era years when in 1938, the state became increasingly hostile to a very specific migrant group.  Stiern argues that although California had made attempts to exclude Chinese, Japanese, Mexicans and Hindus in the past, the white Protestant American dust bowl migrants were the sole victims of the anti-migrant hysteria that seized the state in the late 1930s. Stiern argues that these migrants were not the cause, but rather the focus of many of the problems enveloping the state during the depression years.  Dust bowl migrants had little control over their circumstances after coming into an agricultural system that was distinctly against them.  They became pawns in the social and economic conflicts that had caught the attention of proponents of social justice across the nation.  Stiern explains that long-simmering tensions in California politics came to head when dust bowl refugees migrated into California.

_____. “The ‘Okie’ as Farm Laborer.” Agricultural History 49.1 (Jan. 1975): 202-15. [on file]

Discusses the “Okie” migration into California’s agricultural valleys during the 1930s. Stein explains how these “Okies” competed with and rapidly supplanted the Mexicans, Filipinos, Chinese, and Japanese farm laborers who had dominated farm labor for two decades.

“Steinbeck Answers.” Oildale Press (Aug. 31, 1939): 1.

“Steinbeck in Answer to R. Levin.” Kern Herald (Sept. 5, 1939): 1.

“Steinbeck Novel Reinstated at Kern Library.” Bakersfield Californian (Jan. 28, 1941): 1.

“Steinbeck Tells Inspiring but Tragic Tale of America.” Los Angeles Times (Apr. 16, 1939):C8. [on file]

Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Penguin, 2002.

_____.“The Harvest Gypsies.” The San Francisco News (Oct. 5, 1936): 1. Reprinted in: Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath and Other Writings, 1936-1941. New York: Library of America, 1996.

_____.“Starvation Under the Orange Trees.” Monterey Trader (Apr. 15 1938): 1, 4. Reprinted in: Steinbeck, John. The Grapes of Wrath and Other Writings, 1936-1941. New York: Library of America, 1996.

_____. Steinbeck: A Life in Letters. Eds. Elaine Steinbeck and Robert Wallsten. New York: Viking Press, 1975.

Steinbeck’s writes about the public reaction to The Grapes of Wrath. For example, in one letter he says, “The vilification of me out here from the large landowners and bankers is pretty bad. The latest is a rumor started by them that the Okies hate me and have threatened to kill me for lying about them. This made all the papers. Tom Collins [FSA labor camp manager] says that when his Okies read this smear they were so mad they wanted to burn something down.” [see pp. 180-190 for letters related to The Grapes of Wrath.]

_____. Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath. Edited. by Robert Demott. New York: Viking, 1989.

_____. Their Blood is Strong. San Francisco: Simon J. Lubin Society of California, 1938. Reprinted in: French, Warren, ed. A Companion to The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Viking, 1963. [on file]

Includes Steinbeck’s journalistic pieces, “The Harvest Gypsies,” and “Starvation Under the Orange Trees.”

“Storm Renews Attack on California Coast.” Daily Oklahoman [Oklahoma City] (Feb. 13, 1938): 8A.

Street, Richard Steven. “The Economist as Humanist: The Career of Paul S. Taylor.” California History 58.4 (Winter 1979/1980): 350-361.

Stryker, Roy Emerson and Nancy Wood. In This Proud Land: America 1935-1943 As Seen in the FSA Photographs. Greenwich, N.Y..: Graphic Society, 1973.

“Suggests County Migrant Camps.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 3, 1938): 9.

“Supervisor Harty to be Fall Guy Again”. Kern Herald (Aug. 27, 1939): 1.

“Supervisors Vote Two to Two So Book Ban Stays.” Kern Herald (Aug. 31, 1939): 1.

“Survey Finds the Dust Bowl Has Supplied Few Migrants.” Arvin Tiller (Dec. 8, 1939): 4.

“Survey of Transient Boys in the United States.” Monthly Labor Review (1933): 36, 91-3. [on file]

Synon, John. “Grapes of Wrath Sequel.” South Carolina News and Courier (Nov. 20, 1962).

Taniguchi, Nancy J. “California’s ‘Anti-Okie’ Law: An Interpretative Biography.”  Western Legal History 8.2 (1995):273-290. [on file]

Taylor, Frank J. “From Unemployed to Self-Employed.” Reader’s Digest (Feb. 1940): 121-24. [illed]

_____. “California’s Grapes of Wrath.” Forum (Nov. 1939): 232-238. See replies to Taylor’s article: “Wrath on Both Sides.” (Jan. 1940): 24-25. Taylor’s article also reprinted in: A Casebook on The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Agnes McNeill Donohue. New York: Thomas Y. Crowell, 1968 and The Grapes of Wrath. Edited by Peter Lisca. New York: Penguin, 1977. [on file]

_____. “Labor On Wheels.” Country Gentlemen (Jul. 1938): 12-13, 67.

Within the context of subjectivity and condescension, Taylor discusses the effect the migrants from the Midwest are having on California agriculture. Migrants from Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma are replacing the Mexican laborer who is returning to Mexico to work land offered gratis by the Mexican government. According to Taylor, the white migrants who are replacing the Mexican workers are a “major social burden” for California. Unlike the Mexican laborers, Oklahomans, Texans, and Kansans lack the “sensitive touch for fruit,” their legs are too long for stoop work (Mexicans are “well adapted by nature for stoop labor”), and prefer settling rather than “disappear[ing] over the horizon” out of sight of the Californians. Growers were threatened by the high numbers of Midwestern “penniless work hunters” coming to California because they might be vulnerable to “radical leaders” intent upon organizing them in a “militant and hostile labor army.” However, no labor army has arisen; apparently, the Midwesterners are apolitical, unlike the Mexicans, who are “susceptible to radical leadership” because “they are easily aroused emotionally and accustomed to acting in groups.” In addition to causing problems for the growers, the dustbowlers have too many kids, prefer living in unsanitary conditions, and encourage their relatives to come West. Taylor questions whether California can support these new migrants.

_____. “Promised Land.” Reader’s Digest (Feb. 1940): 29-32. [on file]

Taylor, Paul S. “Adrift on the Land.” New York: Public Affairs Committee, 1940.

_____. “Again the Covered Wagon.” Survey Graphic (Jul. 1935): 348-51. [on file]

Taylor explains that drought, dust, and depression are the factors that drove residents from Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas and adjacent states to immigrate to California. Moreover, floods not drought drove blacks out of Mississippi to California. Although many migrants expect to come to the land of milk and honey, they are confronted with something much different: land is scarce; farm labor job market is glutted; and they are unwanted. The California legislature is considering a bill that will exclude “all indigent persons or persons liable to become public charges.” Many migrants flock to rural California where they are caught in labor conflicts. For example, many of these migrants break strikes to earn money to feed their starving families. Taylor predicts increased conflicts between farmers and workers. In order to protect themselves from strikes, farmers have organized. Taylor predicts that the migrants will continue to be caught in these labor disputes as well as living in squalid conditions unless a “protecting government intervenes.”

_____. “California Farm Labor: A Review.” Agricultural History 42.1 (Jan. 1968): 49-54. [on file]

Taylor surveys the issues concerning the peculiarities of California farm labor needs, which occur because of the industrialization of farmland. This large-unit agricultural structure depends upon an abundant labor supply. Since the 19th century, farm labor supply has been composed of dispossessed peoples, including Chinese, Japanese, Mexicans, Hindustanis, Filipinos, and whites migrating from the southern region of the U.S. Of rural America, California has a record of the most intense labor conflict. Over the few decades, there have been repeated attempts to organize the workers. Taylor concludes his survey with a list of resources related to labor relations and California.

_____. “Migrant Mother: 1936.” American West 7.3 (1970): 41-7. [on file]

Dorothea Lange was a typist for the California State Relief Bureau. Her real assignment was to document research the Bureau was conducting on rural rehabilitation. The poignant photographs which she took in 1936 of starving pea pickers is credited with State action for the construction of migratory labor camps. Lange’s own account is appended as “The Assignment I’ll Never Forget.” 7 illustrations.

_____. Migratory Agricultural Workers on the Pacific Coast. American Sociological Review (Apr. 1938): 225-32. [on file]

Examines the socioeconomic causes of migrant morbidity, poverty, and labor abuse and describes current or potential solutions. Using newspaper accounts, academic studies, and government reports, it contends that the industrial patterns of employment by which large-scale agriculture functions and the bias of local government and institutions for residents cause and perpetuate migrant problems. For example, the economic imperative of large-scale agriculture for cheap labor causes their poverty by obliging them to subsist on the low wages of seasonal employment, while the resistance of local government and institutions to treating them equitably perpetuates it by restricting their access to public services or subsidizing their relocation outside of the community. The solutions described in the article rely on significant state and federal intervention on their behalf, most notably through subsidized health care, improved migrant camp housing, and expanded labor regulation that recognizes the industrial character of labor within the context of large-scale agriculture.

_____. “Migratory Farm Labor in the United States.” Monthly Labor Review 44.3 March 1937: 537-49.

Surveys the refugee families who received relief from the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA). Report’s data claims to disproved the myth that these refugees are primarily irresponsible and “addicted to wandering.” Concludes that the needs of migrants are no different than those of residents. Recommends that to provide migrants with adequate care, the federal government must assume responsibility for reducing or eliminating the states’ residency requirements. Includes detailed narratives, tables, and maps on migratory patterns and the socio-economic characteristics of migrant families.

_____. On the Ground in the Thirties. Salt Lake City, UT: Peregrine Smith, 1983.

_____. Poor Farming and Labor Displacement in the Cotton Belt, 1937. Monthly Labor Review (Mar. 1938): 595-607.

_____. and Clark Kerr. “Documentary History of Cotton Picker’s Strike in California, 1933,” in Hearings before the Subcommittee of the Committee on Education and Labor, U.S. Senate, 76th Congress, 3rd Session, Part 54, Washington, DC: GPO, 1940.

Recounts the events of the violent strike of 1933 involving 8,000 migrant workers in the Southern San Joaquin Valley.

_____.“Uprisings on the Farms.” Survey Graphic (Jan. 1935): 19-22, 44. [on file]

Examines the causes of strikes by migrant workers in 1932 and 1933 with attention to the ostensible role of leftist agitators. The article argues that their long-term cause, the rise of irrigation-based agriculture and its high demand for seasonal labor, combined with short-term causes such as growing restrictions, wage stagnation, and the introduction of mechanization, leading to confrontations with growers and farming communities that had become unaccustomed to such acts. Such confrontations immediately became prone to violence because of racism among growers and farming communities, who already resented the presence of so many non-white workers, and their suspicion of collusion between striking workers and leftists, who instigated similar strikes a generation earlier and were anticipating greater success in organizing workers. Seeing no evidence of substantial leftist involvement, the article concludes that the growers, who have interpreted the strikes as a “crime problem,” are doing nothing to solve the fundamental problems that promise future ones.

Taylor, Paul and Edward Rowell. “Patterns of Agricultural labor Migration Within California.” Monthly Labor Review (Nov. 1938): 980-90. [on file]

Examines patterns of migratory labor in California for the period from June 1934 through June 1935 and its effect on school enrollments. Routes of migration were varied up and down the San Joaquin Valley. Authors distinguish between Mexican and white agricultural workers. Focus in particular on Imperial Valley. Graphs show seasonal mobility with monthly fluctuation of enrollment of Mexican children for a three year period. Fluctuations in enrollment are reflected in seasonal crops. The extreme mobility caused educational problems for Mexican and non-Mexican children for authorities in elementary schools.

Taylor, Paul S. and Tom Vasey. “Refugee Labor Migration to California, 1937.” Monthly Labor Review (Aug. 1938): 240-250. [on file]

Taylor and Vasey’s study “carries through 1937 the statistical record and analysis of the refugee and labor migration to California described in previous articles. For over two and three quarters years there has been available a fortnightly  check on the number of migrants in need of manual employment entering California  by motor vehicle.” Reports statistics gathered on those “in need of manual employment” entering the state by the major highways, noting that nearly ninety percent were white and seventy-five percent were migrants from the “drought states” who entered through Arizona. In contrast, the number of Mexican migrants dropped significantly in the same period due to the saturation of the labor supply by white migrants.  See aforementioned previous articles: “Drought Refugee and Labor Migration to California, June-December 1935.” Monthly Labor Review (Feb.1936): 312-318 and “Migratory Farm Labor in the United States.” Monthly Labor Review (Mar. 1937):537-549. [all articles on file]

_____. “Historical Background of California Farm Labor.” Rural Sociology 1.3 (Sept. 1936):281-295.

_____. “Contemporary Background of California Farm Labor.” Rural Sociology 1.4 (Dec. 1936): 401-19. [on file]

Discusses the growth of intensive agriculture with highly capitalized, large-scale farming methods and concentrated ownership that has given California an industrialized agriculture. [For an overview on Paul S. Taylor’s influence on labor in California, see Richard Steven Street’s article, “The Economist as Humanist: The Career of Paul S. Taylor,” California History 58 (4) Winter 1979/1980: 350-361.

Taylor, Robert. “Hard Times: Values Forged in Dust Bowl Days Led Many to Eventual Success.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 1993): 5; B: 1, 2. [on file]

Reports on the Dust Bowl Days festival in Lamont, California. Sympathetically recalls the difficulties the migrants faced in California during the 1930s. Many of these migrants were able to overcome adversity and find financial success in California.  Featured migrants include: Francis Davis, Joe Townson, J.D. Skaggs, Geraldine Post, Pauline Thompson, Cal Bolinger, and migrant teacher Faye Gribble. See also: “Lamont Plans to Stir Memories of Migrants of the ‘30s.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 1, 1993):B5. [on file]

_____. “Lamont Plans to Stir Memories of Migrants of the ‘30s.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 1993): 1; B: 5.

Taylor, Ronald. “Okies, Refugees of the Great Depression.” Tucson Citizen (Nov. 8, 1980): 8-10.

Teaford, Jon C. “The Twentieth-Century’s Great Migration.” Reviews in American History 18.2 (Jun.1990): 218-223. [on file]

Looks at the rural migration of Okies to California in the 1930s and 1940s and the northward movement of blacks from the Deep South to Chicago during World War II. Focuses on James N. Gregory’s American Exodus: The Dust Bowl Migration and Okie Culture in California (1989) and James R. Grossman’s Land of Hope: Chicago, Black Southerners, and the Great Migration (1989).

Teisch, Jessica B. “From the Dust Bowl to California: The Beautiful Fraud.” The Midwest Quarterly 39.2 (Winter 1998): 153-172. [on file]

Explores historical parallels between California and the Plains states that forecast the potential for a natural calamity as large in scope as the Dust Bowl. Discusses the power that nature wields over people who fail to include ecological limitations in their calculations.

“Ten Counties Map Drive Against Hobos.” Los Angeles Times (Nov. 9, 1936):A1. [on file]

Reports that officials from ten Southern California counties met in order to find a solution to the vagrant problem. It was decided that border patrols would continue in order to bar vagrants from entering the State.

“$10,000 Appropriated for More Migratory Labor Camps.” Shafter Progress (May 10, 1935):1.

“Tenant Purchase Program Aids Tulare Farmers.” Fresno Bee (Jan. 21, 1940): 1.

“The Okies: A National Problem.” Business Week (Feb. 10, 1940): 16-17.

“Them’s Strong Words Gentlemen!” Kern Herald (Aug. 24, 1939): 1.

Theobald, Paul and Ruben Donato. “Children of the Harvest: The Schooling of Dust Bowl and Mexican Migrants During the Depression Era.” Peabody Journal of Education 67.4 (Summer 1990):29-45. [on file]

Examines the of Dust Bowl and Mexican migrants from the California’s west coast during the Depression. It finds that while both migrant groups experienced prejudice and segregation, Mexican migrants also experienced forced assimilation, I.Q. testing, and repatriation. Concludes that while World War II provided better economic opportunities for “Okies” the Mexican migrants were expected to return to the fields after the war.

Thornwaite, Charles W. Internal Migration in the U.S. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1934 [see pp. 1-46, plates VI-VIII ] [on file]

Quantitative study dealing with the phenomenon of internal migration in the United States between rural and urban communities, specifically from 1920 to the beginning of the Depression. In spite of improved means of transportation, people were leaving stricken industrial areas for submarginal agriculture. Using census data for state-of-birth and age group, vital statistics, school census records and school transfers, the study explains the historic phases of interstate migration in the United States.

“Threaten Lives of Officials and Urge Burning Building.” Visalia Times-Delta (Mar. 23, 1934). [on file]

Reports that a riot against Tulare County’s Pixley food depot, which was led by and was led by communist organizers Lillian Monroe and Lillian Dunn. It negatively portrays Monroe and Dunn as agitators and accuses both of inciting violence.

“Tide of Jobless Wanderers turns Toward East Again; Reporter Assigned to Join Migratory Army of Unemployed on Road, Taps Grapevine; Reports Better Times Ahead.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 31, 1932):A1.

Todd, Charles L. “The ‘Okies’ Search for a Lost Frontier.” New York Times Magazine (Aug. 27, 1939):10-11, 17. [on file]

Examines the migration of “Okies” to California during the Dust Bowl. Explores the Federal camp for migrants in Arvin, Kern County, and commends the positive attitude displayed by camp’s migrants. Argues that while sympathy should be expressed for the migrants, California is facing a difficult economic situation and has implemented a border patrol in order to decrease the number of migrants entering the State. Explains that President Franklin D. Roosevelt acknowledges that the migration of “Okies” to California is a national problem, and explains that a solution to the migrant problem in California might be found by relocating migrants to the government’s new Dam projects.

“Tolan Calls for U.S. Migrant-Aid Program.” Bakersfield Californian (Sept. 27, 1940):1. [on file]

“Town Overrun with Indigents: Some Are Vicious.” Wasco News October 16, 1931: 5.

“A Town that Changed Its Mind.” Christian Science Monitor. [on file]

Reports that crops in Buttonwillow, California have attracted migrant labor, and as a result, migrants have been building squatter camps the near the town. Initially there was resistance to the refugees until a former migrant advocated on their behalf, and as a result, efforts have been made by Buttonwillow’s Chamber of Commerce to encourage the County health department to build better facilities within refugee camps. Reports that the Parent-Teacher Association has provided clothing for the refugees’ children, and efforts have been made to integrate them into the Buttonwillow Union Grammar School.

“Tragedies of the Land.” The Commonwealth [McFarland] (Nov. 4, 1937): 4.

“Transient Tide Halted.” Los Angeles Times (24 February 1936). [on file]

Reports that within the past forty-eight hours not a single vagrant has entered California, and that Herbert C. Legg, chairman of the Board of Supervisors, has requested that nonresidents should be sent back to their home states.

“Transient Tide Turns.” Los Angeles Times (10 February 1936):A1. [on file]

Reports that Chief of Police James Davis’ LAPD border patrol has decreased the number of transients entering California, and as a result, has decreased crime within Los Angeles. Davis insists that he is protecting citizens of California, that his border patrol is unconstitutional.

Tribe, Ivan M. “The Hillbilly Versus the City: Urban Image of Country Music.” John Edwards Memorial Foundation Quarterly (Jun.10, 1974): 41-51. [on file]

Study reviews general historical attitudes toward the American city. Discusses common theme widely utilized in novels and ballads characterizing the city as a place where young and innocent country youth are led astray and corrupted. Buck Owens’ music is discussed.

Troxell, Willard W. and W. Paul O’Day. “The Migrants: Migration to the Pacific Northwest, 1930-1938, Part 3.” Land Policy Review (Jan. 1940): 33-43. [on file]

Statistically analyzes migration to and within Idaho, Washington, and Oregon during the last ten years. While census data regarding migrants in these states are lacking, survey data from the Department of Agriculture and Farm Security Administration indicate that migration from the Rockies and Midwest has been steady throughout the 1930s with only a slight surge from 1936 to 1937 coinciding with the drought that struck the Great Plains. They have tended to settle in densely populated areas and represent every broad occupational category in numbers that are roughly equal across the three states excepting Idaho, which seems to have attracted more farmers and farm laborers. Furthermore, migrants arriving from 1934 to 1938 had a slightly larger proportion of unemployment claims relative to residents, and the study urges that each state make a greater effort to relieve their distress in order to integrate migrants more completely into local communities and economies.

“Tulare Closes Food Depot to Able Bodied Men.” Fresno Bee (May 13, 1935): 1.

“Tulare District: WPA Build New Migrant School.” Fresno Bee (Jul. 23, 1939): 1.

“Tulare Relief Need is Acute.” Visalia Times-Delta (Jan. 8, 1932).

“200 Porterville Men Work Under U.S. Relief Plan.” Fresno Bee (Dec. 1, 1933):1.

“U.S. Migratory Camp is Opened at Farmersville.” Fresno Bee (Dec.18, 1938): 1.

“U.S. Remembers Forgotten Farmers.” Mid-Week Pictorial (Jan. 13, 1937): 4.

Underhill, Bertha S. “A Study of 132 Families in California Cotton Camps with Reference to Availability of Medical Care.” California State Department of Social Welfare. Division of Child Welfare. October 1937.

Report cites the industrialization of California agriculture as the reason for the increase in migrants to California. Underhill provides information collected at grower-owned farm labor camps in Merced, Madera, and Fresno Counties, in the neighborhoods of Madera, Los Banos, Dos Palos and Firebaugh. Data includes: family size, income, residence status, previous occupations, relief received by 132 families including Mexican, white, black and Native American. The statistical tables emphasize the health situation of children, including nutrition, infections, hygiene, tuberculosis, congenital defects. Underhill concludes that although considered “migratory,” most in study remained in the county. Many migrant families do not receive relief; non-residents do not receive medical care and are unable to pay for private medical care. Those migrants who are residents often do not take advantage of medical services. Recommends that state and federal agencies should pay for the improvement of the poor conditions under which migrant families live.

“Reader’s Viewpoint: Undesirables.” Bakersfield Californian (July 28, 1938):20. [on file]

“Unemployment Increases Cases in Child Aid.” Wasco News (Oct. 16, 1931): 3.

“Unemployment, Relief Work in Kern County Explained by Welfare Heads.”Shafter Progress (Jan. 26, 1934): 4.

United States Congress. House. Select Committee to Investigate the Interstate Migration of Destitute Citizens. Interstate Migration. Hearings before the Select Committee to Investigate the Interstate Migration of Destitute Citizens, House of Representatives, on H. Res. 63 and H. Res. 491, 76th Cong., 3rd Sess., 1940-1941. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1940. [excerpt on file]

United States Congress. “Interstate Migration.” Hearings Before the Select Committee to Investigate Migration of Destitute Citizens. House of Representatives. Seventy-sixth Congress. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1940. (July 29-31, 1940).

Committee appointed to inquire into the interstate migration of destitute citizens, to study, survey and investigate the social and economic needs and the movement of indigent persons across state lines.

United States. Department of Agriculture. Bureau of Agricultural Economics. “Migration and Settlement on the Pacific Coast.” Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1942. [on file]

United States. Department of Agriculture. Farm Security Administration. “Arvin Farms and Arvin Migratory Labor Camp.” 2 November 1939. [on file]

United State Department of Agriculture. Farm Security Administration. “The Migration of Farm Labor.” Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1939. [on file]

United States. Farm Security Administration. A Study of 6,655 Migrant Households Receiving Emergency Grants, 1938. [excerpt on file]

United States. Department of Agriculture. Farm Security Administration. “Guiding Policies for Program in 1944.” 15 July 1943. [on file]

United States.  Department of Agriculture. War Food Administration. “Camps for Migratory Workers.”  FSA Pub. 132. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1945? [excerpt on file]

United States.  Department of Agriculture. War Food Administration. “History of Farm Labor Activities of the Farm Security Administration.” 26 January 1945. [on file]

U.S. Department of Commerce. Bureau of the Census. Farm Tenancy in the United States. 1924. [excerpt on file]

United States. Library of Congress. Voices from the Dust Bowl: The Charles L. Todd and Robert Sonkin Migrant Worker Collection. Web. 14 June 2014.

Online presentation of an ethnographic field collection documenting the everyday life of residents of migrant work camps in Central California in 1940 and 1941.

United States. Senate. Subcommittee of the Committee on Education and Labor. Hearings and Reports Pursuant to S. Res. 266, Violations of Free Speech and Rights of Labor, 74th-77th Congress, 1936-1941. Note: See Dr. Clements to Mr. Cecil, Hearings, Part 53: 19, 696.

United States. Senate. Subcommittee of the Committee on Education and Labor. Hearings Before the Committee on Appropriations U.S. Senate, “Work Relief and Public Works Appropriation Act of 1939. 76th Congress,

United States. Works Progress Administration. Division of Social Research. “Migrant Families.” Washington: GPO, 1938.

Report on the characteristics and activities of Depression migrant families who received relief from the transient program of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA). Report debunks stereotypical misconceptions of migrants as irresponsible, chronic wanderers. Suggests as solution to the transient migrant relief problem the elimination of state settlement requirements which designate transient as a separate category. Contains detailed analysis of 5,489 migrant families selected from the total number receiving care in transient bureaus during September 1935. Includes reasons for migration, family histories, origins and movement, personal characteristics, such as composition of migrant families, age, ethnicity, citizenship, marital status, and education, among others. Contains tables and figures. Concludes that the transient relief problem is national; the solution is Federal leadership. See also: John N. Webb. The Transient Unemployed: A Description and Analysis of the Transient Relief Population. Works Progress Administration Research Monograph III [1935]. New York: Da Capo, 1971 (this edition is the unabridged republication of the first edition published in Washington, D.C., in 1935).

_____.“Rural Migration in the U.S ”. Washington: GPO, 1939. [lead author, C.E. Lively] [summary on file]

Claims to be a comprehensive analysis of rural migration in the U.S. “By the use of census data this report presents a detailed analysis of the recent movement of the rural population.  Includes characteristics of migrant and nonmigrant families, photos by Dorothea Lange, and maps.

University of California, Berkeley. “Legislative Problems #4: Transients and Migrants.” (Feb. 27, 1939)1-67. [on file]

“Up to California.” San Francisco News (Mar. 10, 1937):14. [on file]

Describes the unsanitary living conditions of migrants and reports that the U.S. Resettlement Administration is constructing new migratory labor camps, which will provide clean water and sanitary facilities.

“U.S. Migratory Camp is Opened at Farmersville.” Fresno Bee (Dec. 18, 1938): 1.

“U.S. Remembers Forgotten Farmers.” Mid-Week Pictorial. January 13, 1937: 4.

USDA, ASCC Federal Records Center, San Francisco, 36, 886. Shafter Camp Report, November 1940.

“Vagrants Rounded Up in City and County.” Los Angeles Times (Feb. 7 1936). [on file]

Reports that a vagrant squad has been formed in Los Angeles in order to jail vagrants, and argues that nearly half of the vagrants arrested have had previous criminal records.

Vargas, Zaragosa. Proletarians of the North: A History of Mexican Industrial Workers in Detroit and the Midwest. Berkeley and Oxford: University of California Press, 1993.

Vean, R.J. January 21, 1941. Steinbeck. The Grapes of Wrath. Clerk of the Board. Gretchen Knief, County Librarian. [Beale Library, vertical file.]

Velie, Lester. “The Americans Nobody Wants.” Collier’s. April 1, 1950: 13-14, 48-50. [on file]

Reports on the persistence of poverty and disease among migrants in the San Joaquin Valley into the 1950s. Despite an economic boom resulting from wartime industry and more than a decade of government intervention, migrant slums continue to surround major cities throughout the San Joaquin Valley, wherein people eke out an existence in conditions described nearly a generation earlier in The Grapes of Wrath. Malnutrition among children and a lack of access to medical care are their commonest complaints, both caused largely by chronic indigence and an inability to get ahead because work is in short supply, public and private relief is limited or absent, and interest rates on loans they contact to pay for their rents are high. Much of the problem regarding public relief, the article claims, lies in the outright refusal of interests such as the State Senate Agricultural Committee to support any relief scheme, fearing that such relief encourages migrants to stay in California.

_____. “For Us and Our Children: Home is a Dream [Part 2].” Collier’s (8 April 1950): 27, 54-57.

Reports on the persistently poor working conditions of migrants in the San Joaquin Valley a decade after The Grapes of Wrath. Despite the efforts of the Roosevelt administration in the 1930s, many migrant agricultural workers continue to have hand-to-mouth lives in substandard camp housing with their children, who, if they do not die of malnutrition or diarrhea as infants, work alongside their parents, often suffering chronic skin diseases due to malnutrition and poor sanitation. The article further shows that active efforts by state and federal agencies to improve their health ended in the 1940s, although it gives no reason for the cessation, and have only resumed since county coroners began to note high infant mortality rates among migrants. Likewise, the drive to organize migrants, although supported by the La Follette Committee of the United States Senate and national church organizations, has stalled because growers continue to resist it, claiming that a strike by a migrant union would ruin any grower, even the largest ones.

“Waifs of the Winds.” Westways (June 1939): 16-17. [on file]

Wallace, Henry A. “The War at Our Feet.” Survey Graphic (Feb.1940): 109-14.

 “War Opened on Migrants: Officials Unite at Santa Barbara to Bar Outside Labor.” Los Angeles Times (Jan. 29, 1939): A7. [on file]

Reports that Santa Barbara County will ban migrants from entering the county, according agricultural commissioner Eugene S. Kellogg, there is enough local labor to support the upcoming harvest.

Ware, Susan. Holding Their Own: American Women in the 1930s. Boston, MA: Twayne, 1982. Print. [on file].

Women Face the Depression is the first chapter in Susan Ware’s book chronicling women’s contributions to the workforce, society, and politics during the 1930s.  Ware begins by describing how all women, rich, poor, or in the middle, were affected by the Depression, and collectively were able to help the nation survive the devastating economic crash.  Ware gives a brief description of the ways women saved money and cut costs in the home, and explains how the Depression impacted marriage, divorce, and birth rates.  Ware argues women and families were impacted in this decade in two ways: Some families were broken up, temporarily or permanently, and other families turned inward and became even closer.  A woman’s role remained at the center of the family, regardless of whether the family remained intact.

Ware dissects the responsibilities of rural farmwomen and finds that in some cases, economic difficulties within rural areas during the 1930s were not as extreme as other areas because difficult economic and natural conditions that affected farms predated the 1930s.  Ware briefly mentions the different kinds of struggles many African American women dealt with during this time and how their important contributions to the home resulted in families with strong matriarchs. Ware further argues that women’s lives were likely less to be disrupted than men’s during this era.  Unemployed men frequently found themselves in unknown territory around the house, while women continued to maintain their control over the house and home regardless of their circumstances. Despite retaining responsibility for their households, many women were also propelled into new activities outside of the home that may not have been available prior to the Depression.

Wartzman, Rick. Obscene in the Extreme: The Burning and Banning of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. New York: Public Affairs, 2008. Print.

Rick Wartzman’s Obscene in the Extreme provides a well-researched, narrative account of Kern County’s 1939 banning of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath.  Through primary and secondary sources, Wartzman dissects individuals to reveal the political and social reasons that motivated some board members to support the ban and others to oppose it. While the scope of the work is narrowed to a single week directly after the ban, Wartzman is able to show how the events in Kern County reflected the political and social ideas of the nation as a whole at this time.

The 1930s were a tumultuous time period in American history not only because the nation was struggling economically, but also because of the threat of war in Europe. It is through this lens that Wartzman approaches the banning and censorship of Steinbeck’s novel within Kern County. The publication of Steinbeck’s book led to an unprecedented controversy when the Kern County Board of Supervisors banned the book from its public library.  Unbeknownst to even the board members who voted, no book had ever previously been banned in Kern County.  The Board’s legal right to do so was soon called into question, and it became apparent that although the Board was citing obscenity, the actual reason for the ban was much more complicated.  Stemming from the agricultural elite of Kern County, the banning of Steinbeck’s novel was an effort to put down the possible threat of agricultural reform. Politically, economically, and even socially, The Grapes of Wrath was seen in Kern County as an attack on big farms, low migrant labor wages, and class division. The Great Depression, the Dust Bowl, and the impending war in Europe were at the forefront of the nation’s mind in the 1930s, and Wartzman places Kern County’s controversial book banning firmly into the national and international concerns of the of the time.

“Waters Receding from Stricken L.A. Region: Huge Property Loss.” Yuma Daily Sun [Yuma Arizona Sentinel](Mar. 3, 1938): Sec. 1; 1.

Watkins, Gordon S. and Paul A. Dodd. Labor Problems. New York: Crowell, 1946. [excerpt on file]

Weber, Devra. Dark Sweat, White Gold: California Farm Workers, Cotton, and the New Deal. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1994. Print.

In Dark Sweat, White Gold, Devra Weber examines the transformational changes that occurred in industrial class relations in California’s agricultural industry prior to and during Roosevelt’s New Deal legislation.  She presents a study of the cotton industry and cotton workers in the San Joaquin Valley from 1919 to 1939, and discusses whether structure or human agency, or both, shaped the workers’ lives.  Weber focuses mainly on Mexican, but also Anglo-American workers and examines the economic, social, and political conditions under which they labored in depression-era California.

The study first describes how California’s labor system changed with the introduction and rapid expansion of the cotton industry.  The rise of cotton affected labor demands and propelled growers to increase control over their workers.  The collective interests of government agencies, landowners, banks, and big business created a monopoly of the cotton industry, which centralized economic and political power.  Through oral histories and documentation, Weber details the extreme conditions Mexican workers were made to work and live in.  In response to their employers’ exploitation, Mexican migrants attempted to create their own stability within an unstable work environment.  Weber explores Mexican culture, family life, and the past experiences that affected their relationships with their employers.  Weber argues that the shared memory of the Mexican revolution was an important aspect of the worker’s ability to sustain the 1933 cotton strike. By examining patterns of labor recruitment, union leadership, and government involvement, Weber shows that the separation of industrial and agricultural workers in federal legislation resulted in the farm labor conditions that prompted major farm labor strikes and the organization of unions during the 1930s.

Uses oral histories of Mexican migrant labor in California agriculture during the 1930s to examine both the paradoxical empowerment of growers by the New Deal and the active resistance by migrants to the same through community, family, and habits that formed a tradition of collective action which, although not immediately successful, remained independent of outside support or leadership.

Webb, John N. and Malcolm Brown. Migrant Families. Works Progress Administration Research Monograph XVIII. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1938. [on file]

Report on the characteristics and activities of Depression migrant families who received relief from the transient program of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA). Report debunks stereotypical misconceptions of migrants as irresponsible, chronic wanderers. Suggests as solution to the transient migrant relief problem the elimination of state settlement requirements which designate transient as a separate category. Contains detailed analysis of 5,489 migrant families selected from the total number receiving care in transient bureaus during September 1935. Includes reasons for migration, family histories, origins and movement, personal characteristics, such as composition of migrant families, age, ethnicity, citizenship, marital status, and education, among others. Contains tables and figures. Concludes that the transient relief problem is national; the solution is Federal leadership. See also: John N. Webb. The Transient Unemployed: A Description and Analysis of the Transient Relief Population. Works Progress Administration Research Monograph III [1935]. New York: Da Capo, 1971 (this edition is the unabridged republication of the first edition published in Washington, D.C., in 1935).

Weiler, Kathleen. “Schooling Migrant Children: California, 1920-1940.” History Workshop Journal 37 (1994): 117-142. [on file]

Examines the interplay of race, class, and locality on the struggle between different groups — teachers, students, scholars, officials — and the presentation of that struggle on how to educate migrant children. It finds that local conditions, particularly the needs of growers and racism against Mexican and Asian migrants, permitted an easy and common objectification of white migrant children and created divisions in official directives, reports, and even personal recollections of the problem.

Weisger, Marsha L. “Mythic Fields of Plenty: The Plight of Depression-Era Oklahoma Migrants in Arizona.” Journal of Arizona History 32.3 (1991): 241-66. [on file]

____. “The Reception of The Grapes of Wrath in Oklahoma: A Reappraisal.” Chronicles of Oklahoma (Dec. 1992):394-415. [on file]

“Welfare Director Explains School Attendance Law.” Wasco News (May 22, 1931): 1.

“Welfare Group Seeks Jobs for Local People.” Wasco News (Apr. 29, 1932): 1.

Wells, Merle. “Twentieth-Century Migrant Farm Labor.” Journal of the West 25.2 (1986): 65-72.

Discusses 20th-century migrant farm labor in western United States, in particular, Mexican workers in California.

West, David. “Queen Elizabeth (Not Our Police) Launched the First War on Bums.” Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine (Mar. 1, 1936):5. [on file]

Westbrook, Lawrence. “Rehabilitation of Stranded Families.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. 176 (1934): 74-9. [on file]

“What Does the New Deal Mean to This Mother and Her Children?” San Francisco News (Mar. 11, 1936):3. [on file]

Uses Dorothea Lange’s “Migrant Mother” photograph to argue against blocking the Federal Resettlement Administration’s effort to construct camps for migrant workers.Reports on the poor living conditions for migrants. Article appears with iconic Migrant Mother photography by Dorothea Lange.

“What Should America Do for the ‘Joads’?” Town Meeting 5.22 (Mar. 11, 1940): 3-30.

“When Dust Bowl Refugees Come to Linnell.” The Visalian (Jul. 30, 1981): 2.

Whisenhunt, Donald W. “The Transient in the Depression.” Red River Valley Historical Review 1.1 (1974): 7-20.

Whitcomb, Robert. “The New Pilgrim’s Progress.” The Atlantic Monthly  (May 1931): 545-54. [on file]

Whitney, D.J. “White Labor Harvested Raisins.” Pacific Rural Press (Oct. 21, 1921): 416. [on file]

“Why Not Be Practical?” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 23, 1939): 18.

Wik, Reynold M. “Some Interpretations of the Mechanization of Agriculture in the Far West.” Agricultural History 49.1 (1975): 73-83.

Discusses how the environment of California’s Central Valley had an impact on the evolution of farm machinery. The manufacture of combines and the Caterpillar tractor were two of the most significant technological developments in recent American history.

Wilder, Russell M., M.D. “Mobilize for Total Nutrition! Survey Graphic (1941): 381. [on file]

“Will In Hand.” Wasco News (Nov. 13, 1931): 8.

Williamson, Mary H. Unemployment Relief Administration in Kern County, 1935-1940 [Master’s thesis]. UC, Los Angeles, 1936.

Wolfenstein, Judith. “Okay Okie.” Westways 71.7 (1979): 33-5. [on file]

Two short articles by Woody Guthrie on his observations of two famous California landmarks: “Hollywood” and “Hollerwood Bolevard” written for the Hollywood Tribune in 1939.

Wood, Samuel E. “Municipal Shelter Camps for California Migrants.” Sociology and Social Research 23.3 (Jan./Feb. 1939): 222-227. [on file]

Describes how the city of Fresno has operated a shelter camp for migrants during the agricultural off-season over the past six years in order to reduce surges in the crime rate due to vagrancy exacerbated by cold and hunger. Migrants earn their keep by working on municipal projects and a committee headed by the mayor administers the camp. Surveys of the migrants show that they are generally honest and appreciate the camp’s services, especially since work is difficult to find in the Central Valley.

Woofter, Thomas J. “Travel Also Broadens Social Issues.” Nation’s Business (Apr. 29, 1941): 20-2, 114-17. [on file]

“Work or Face Kern Vagrancy Charge is Sheriff’s Ultimatum.” Bakersfield Californian (Oct. 8, 1937): 9.

Worster, Donald. Dust Bowl: The Southern Plains in the 1930s. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.

Examines the socioeconomic and ecological foundation of the Dust Bowl in an interdisciplinary analysis of how farmers and agricultural experts conceptualized the Great Plains. It argues that the insistent demands of industrial-scale agriculture not only created catastrophe on the Plains during the 1930s but also shaped the mindset of the experts appointed to restore the Plains during the 1940s. The result has been the subordination of conservation to maximal production and the persistence of conditions that threaten ecological stability in the region.

Worster, Donald. Dust Bowl: The Southern Plains in the 1930s. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.

Examines the socioeconomic and ecological foundation of the Dust Bowl in an interdisciplinary analysis of how farmers and agricultural experts conceptualized the Great Plains. It argues that the insistent demands of industrial-scale agriculture not only created catastrophe on the Plains during the 1930s but also shaped the mindset of the experts appointed to restore the Plains during the 1940s. The result has been the subordination of conservation to maximal production and the persistence of conditions that threaten ecological stability in the region.

“WPA Employees Assured Union Is Not Banned.” Fresno Bee (Apr. 9, 1937): 1.

“The Young New Dealers.” Nation (May 31, 1975): 645-46. [on file]

Zeman, Ray. “San Joaquin Officials Study Indigent Needs.” Los Angeles Times (Jul. 25, 1937):1. [on file]

Examines the influx of migratory workers flooding the San Joaquin Valley. Federal, State, and local officials have begun to study how to deal with the increase in migrants and the concomitant problems of disease, relief costs, and unsanitary living conditions. Negatively portrays migratory workers as “white trash,” lazy, and unsanitary.

_____. “Squatter Army Wages Grim Battle for Life.” Los Angeles Times (Jul.21, 1937): 1.

Investigates the living conditions of migratory workers in Kern County. A majority of these workers are former sharecroppers from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, and Texas who have come to California in search of work. While these migratory workers have found seasonal employment on farms in Kern County, they face deplorable living conditions, including disease, and a high rate of infant mortality.