Driving Away Settlers: Drought on the Western High Plains

Before the Dust Bowl, in the last decade of the nineteenth century, the semiarid western High Plains saw a drought that virtually wiped out the settlement.

In the 1890s there was no Farm Security Administration to sponsor notable photographers to record the misery, as they did so vividly in the 1930s. The drought and associated settlement failure of the 1890s have been overshadowed by the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, which confirmed the reputation of the Great Plains as America’s problem region.
Photo by Fotolia/romitas