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Photogrammar is a web-based platform for organizing, searching, and visualizing the 170,000 photographs from 1935 to 1945 created by the United States Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information (FSA-OWI) created by Yale University. In order to place the FSA-OWI in the larger federal effort to document America during the Great Depression, Yale and UNC combined resources. Together, we incorporate the Federal Writers Project (FWP), which recorded the lived experience of Americans, and is housed at UNC’s Southern Historical Collection. As a part of the New Deal programs, the federal government commissioned the Federal Writers Project (FWP) to fund scholars (such as anthropologists and sociologists, and artists, including photographers and writers) to pursue their trade in the service of capturing and describing the complexities of American life during the Great Depression. One aspect of the FWP was to collect the life histories of everyday Americans, especially those whose perspectives had not been previously included in the historical record. The life histories are plotted on a new geographical layer allowing search by space and time. Users are able to search the new layer independently or along with the geographical layer of FSA-OWI photographs. The new and cleaned transcripts created over the course of the next year will also allow for refined search functionality including faceted browsing and full text search. Users will be able to explore the FWP and FSA-OWI spatially, temporally and through faceted searching allowing the public to explore the broader documentary record of the era relationally.

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