“That was Black Sunday, April 14, 1935, the day of the worst duster of them all. The storm carried twice as much dirt as was dug out of the earth to create the Panama Canal. The canal took seven years to dig; the storm lasted a single afternoon. More than 300,000 tons of Great Plains topsoil was airborne that day.”
― Timothy Egan
“American meteorologists rated the Dust Bowl the number one weather event of the twentieth century. And as they go over the scars of the land, historians say it was the nation’s worst prolonged environmental disaster.” – The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl.
I listened to this book recently. Twice. Back to back. It was very engaging. And I found that learning about that worst hard time was very enlightening for understanding our time. Using the stories of real people Egan unintentionally illuminates how we got to our current codified ideologies on the right and left. It demonstrates where government policy to assist has been both helpful and hurtful. It includes elements of the great depression, WWII and immigration from the 1800s. It helped me see that our hard times are not so hard—yet. And what we may need to consider to avoid them becoming harder than they already are.
I’d love to hear your thoughts if you’ve read it or read it.