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The Dust Bowl

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  • The Plow that Broke the Plains

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    A steam-powered tractor pulls a harrow on the open plains of Colorado. The mechanization of farming contributed significantly to the environmental catastrophe of the dust bowl in the mid-1930s.
    The Plow that Broke the Plains
  • The Fury of Dust

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    A dust storm bears down on the town of Burlington in Kit Carson, County, enveloping everything in its path.
    The Fury of Dust



National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office, “The ‘Black Sunday’ Dust Storm of 14 April 1935,” National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, last modified February 12, 2015.

History Colorado, “Eighty Years Ago This Week Dust Bowl Storm Wreaks Havoc on Colorado Plains,” n.d.

R. Douglas Hurt, “Dust Bowl,” Encyclopedia of the Great Plains, ed. David J. Wishart, 2011.

Additional Information: 

Carl Abbott, Stephen J. Leonard, and Thomas J. Noel, Colorado: A History of the Centennial State, 5th ed. (Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2013).

Richard N. Ellis and Duane A. Smith, eds., Colorado: A History in Photographs, rev. ed. (Boulder: University Press of Colorado, 2005).

Brad D. Lookingbill, Dust Bowl, USA: Depression America and the Ecological Imagination, 1929–1941 (Athens: Ohio State University Press, 2001).

Carter Revard, Winning the Dust Bowl (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2001).

Dave Showalter, Prairie Thunder: The Nature of Colorado’s Great Plains (Pueblo, CO: Skyline Press, 2007).

Donald Worster, Dust Bowl: The Southern Plains in the 1930s (New York: Oxford University Press, 1979).

John R. Wunder, Frances W. Kaye, and Vernon Carstensen, eds., Americans View Their Dust Bowl Experience (Niwot: University Press of Colorado, 1999).