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New Deal History: Revisited & Revised

News items that discuss and rethink the New Deal and its impact on America.

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  • Discover a Forgotten New Deal Photographer in SF
    • October 10, 2016
    An unknown elder of American landscape photography, George Alexander Grant (pictured) was the first Chief Photographer of the National Park Service. Though his iconic images inspired millions of Americans to visit their national parks, Grant is largely unknown because his images were simply credited "National Park Service." Ren and Helen Davis's ...
  • Douglas Brinkley on FDR’s Environmentalism
    • September 21, 2016
    We’re very excited about all the buzz surrounding Douglas Brinkley’s Rightful Heritage: Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Land of America. (In fact, Gray Brechin is reviewing it for our Fall 2016 newsletter.) In a recent edition of the Saturday Evening Post, Brinkley provided a refresher on FDR’s conservationism and environmentalism, centering on ...
  • San Francisco Zoo Artworks a Legacy of WPA Women
    • July 27, 2016
    Designed by noted architect George W. Kelham and completed in 1925, the Mothers Building was for years a refuge for women and their children visiting the San Francisco Zoo. The mosaics and murals— all by women artists hired by the Works Progress Administration— were added between 1934 and 1938. “Saint Francis—” ...
  • New Deal Smiles
    • July 25, 2016
    If you read the news with any regularity, you know that many working Americans are fed up. They’re fed up with stagnant wages, oppressive student loan debt, and trade deals that whittle away at their economic well-being. U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren has said, “People feel like the system is rigged ...
  • Restored WPA Sculptures in Ithaca, NY
    • July 16, 2016
    "'You need to crouch over to be at a child's height, I think, to appreciate them fully," Maroney said. 'I love that the hospital has kept them that way and has resisted the temptation to put them up on outdoor pedestals.'"   Read more here about recent efforts to restore  the Cayuga Medical ...
  • CWA Models Found in Museum Attic
    • April 19, 2016
    Attics sometimes become unintended archives. At the Museum of the American Indian in Novato, California, director Colleen Hicks and archeologist Teresa Saltzman made a serendipitous discovery early this year. In January 2016, they found nine models of ancient Southwestern Puebloan structures in the museum’s attic—dusty and forgotten for more than ...
  • See America By Rail Through These RFC Photos
    • November 30, 2015
    Berle Clay writes us from Kentucky:   The Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC), established by the Hoover administration in 1932, acted throughout the New Deal as a financial engine, creatively funding agencies as diverse as the Commodity Credit Corporation and the Defense Plant Corporation, construction projects like Knickerbocker Village in New York and ...
  • Science!, Courtesy of the FWP
    • November 13, 2015
    Through the Federal Writers’ Project (FWP), 6,600 out-of-work authors and journalists chronicled the landscape (See: The American Guide Series); catalogued experiences with racism, past and present (See: Richard Wright’s enduringly topical “The Ethics of Living Jim Crow”  and the Slave Narratives); and celebrated America’s diverse foodways (See: America Eats).   Less well known ...
  • New Deal Art Under Our Noses
    • October 5, 2015
    Last week, we reported on a Works Progress Administration (WPA) mural unearthed from a post office basement. This week, courtesy of Diane Bell and the San Diego Union-Tribune, we bring news of WPA art “hidden in plain sight.”   Last spring, Antiques Roadshow devoted an entire episode to a WPA artwork being ...
  • Retrieving and Restoring a Long-Lost WPA Mural in Richmond, CA
    • October 2, 2015
    Last year, Melinda McCrary, Director of the Richmond (CA) Museum of History, heard tell of a legendary, seemingly lost mural. Richmond: The Industrial City, was painted in 1941 by Victor Arnautoff, displayed in the city’s main post office until 1976, and then packed away… somewhere. A series of calls led ...
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Living New Deal. Still Working.