The Worst Hard Time–Book Review

Dust Bowl

Thought I would give politics a break well at least for a day:)

I just finished reading a book titled The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan.  This book is about the dust bowl, something that is rarely talked about anymore but a part of history that destroyed so many lives.

The dust bowl came in the 1930’s and is also known as the Dirty Thirties and black blizzards or black rollers.  Their was really two parts to the dust bowl, agriculture and nature weather cycles.  Their was the drought which came in 1934, 1936 and 1939-1940.  During the drought the farmers conducted significant plowing which made the land bare.  When the winds came coupled with the drought, it tore up all the sand and dirt and whipped it into a frenzy.

You would never think that a drought and wind could cause so much destruction but it certainly did.

This book takes a look at those that stayed in their homes and didn’t flee the massive wall of dust.  The remembrances of what it was like is gripping but I will say it is hard to read meaning this book doesn’t sugar coat the horrible environmental disaster.  It also provides pictures of what this was like and the pictures are so riveting, it is almost like you were there.  One specific picture showed sand in the home of a farmer and the sand went as high as the window inside the house.  In one corner the sand was over four feet high.  Can you imagine?

The dust bowl reached as far as New York to Washington D.C. and the visibility was less than 3 ft.  April 14, 1935 went down in history as that is when the “Black Sunday” arrive and centered on Texas and Oklahoma and touched Colorado, New Mexico and Kansas.  It affected over 100,000,000 acres of land.

This book also states that there is no true way to tell how many people died but does state many died while trying to outrun the dust storm and were overcome on the roads.  Others died IN piles of sand in their homes.  This is even after they tried to seal the windows and doors with wet rags.

Some readers have said this book is too depressing but I am a firm believer that you have to educate yourself and try to understand why this happened so we don’t repeat the same mistakes of the past.

It was weird for me because while reading this book, I was constantly thirsty which has never happened to me before.

If you like history then this book is for you but be prepared because it does go into detail and show pictures of what it truly was like.

Enjoy the read and now I am off to my next one that I read about on a blog.