Another captivating documentary by Ken Burns, The Dust Bowl, examines the 1930's drought that nearly brought people, families, business and the American food chain to its knees. The four hour, two episode documentary examines in great detail the ecological disaster unleashed by man himself. Burns brings together the recollections of 26 individuals that endured the suffering and determination to survive, along with riveting photographs and film.
A perfect storm of events were set in motion, that that would transform acres upon acres of green lands into wheat fields, that were mis-harvested against the recommendations of the government. Wind would strip the land of its topsoil, uprooting the very foundation of agriculture, and set the stage for years of drought, misery, disease and financial hardship.
Unable to survive off of the very land that brought them there in the first place, millions of individuals and families left their futures behind in a quest of a new life somewhere else. Though many left, not all hope was lost. Farmers and their families found ways to survive with the assistance of the New Deal program, and fortunate enough to hold onto their homestead.
Out of the misery of this environmental disaster, came about a forged partnership between farmers and the agriculture department to develop and implement new farming, landscaping, and conservation techniques that would thwart a re-occurrence of this man-made disaster.