Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Walker Evans - Main Street storefronts, Edwards, Mississippi - 1936

In the early Spring of 1936, Walker Evans was in Mississippi photographing for the Farm Security Administration. These two pictures were taken in the town of Edwards, about 15 miles east of Vicksburg in February and March of that year.

I believe the picture below was taken from the wooden bridge over the tracks in Edwards (see yesterday's post below) looking to the west. The railroad depot and other buildings to the right of the tracks are no longer standing. The storefronts in the picture  above would be out of the frame on the left, facing the tracks. The sidings have been taken up and a single track still  carries freight trains through the town.

Walker Evans - View of railroad station, Edwards, Mississippi - 1936

This picture of the railroad depot was included in the expanded section of photographs in the 1960 edition of Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Both photos are courtesy of the Library of Congress.

StorefrontsLC-USF342- 001295-A [P&P]
Railroad station -  LC-USF342- 001295-A [P&P]


  1. I was waiting too see what you would choose from Evans' library of work. Makes me wonder what his thought process was when he did these. He must have seemed out of place to townsfolk who saw him. Wonder what they thought of this guy taking photographs.

  2. I have wondered about this as well. Evans was working with an 8 X10 view camera (I am pretty sure) so he would not have been inconspicuous.

    There were only a couple of Evans/Edwards photos available online at the Library of Congress. In addition to these two, there is another photo of a building taken in Edwards, and there is a photo of soil erosion taken near Edwards. I have seen another street scene sometimes labeled as Edwards, but I think that photo was actually taken in Vicksburg. Evans spent a week or so in Vicksburg in the same time period as these photos of Edwards.

  3. Hi,
    You have some interesting posts about photography. Your blog is a journey for me.
    As a photograph interested in FSA works,, I made some researchs and photographs in Mississippi too.

    The main street is perpendicular to the tracks, and the store front picture are on the left, on east side of Main street. They are no longer in place.
    My photographs here: are on the west part of the main street.
    You can also see a picture taken from the bridge:
    A french guy following your work.

    1. Chris, It is nice to hear from you. I first encountered Walker Evans in high school and his pictures in the book "Let Us Now Praise Famous Men" made me want to be a photographer. I have spent many an hour over the work of Evans and the other FSA photographers.

      I very much enjoyed your "After F.S.A" portfolio; it is really some lovely work. If you don' t mind, I would like to share a link to it with my readers. Let me know if that is OK.


  4. Hi Edd,
    Thanks for your comment, and no problem to share. I'll also continue to travel with your blog.


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