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The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl

The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl

The dust storms that terrorized the High Plains in the darkest years of the Depression were like nothing ever seen before or since. Timothy Egan’s critically acclaimed account rescues this iconic chapter of American history from the shadows in a tour de force of historical reportage. Following a dozen families and their communities through the rise and fall of the region, Egan tells of their desperate attempts to carry on through blinding black dust blizzards, crop failure, and the death of loved ones.

Introduction: Live Through This

I • PROMISE: The Great Plowup, 1901–1930

Chapter 1. The Wanderer

Chapter 2. No Man's Land

Chapter 3. Creating Dalhart

Chapter 4. High Plains Deutsch

Chapter 5. Last of the Great Plowup

II • BETRAYAL, 1931–1933

Chapter 6. First Wave

Chapter 7. A Darkening

Chapter 8. In a Dry Land

Chapter 9. New Leader, New Deal

Chapter 10. Big Blows

III • BLOWUP, 1934–1939

Chapter 11. Triage

Chapter 12. The Long Darkness

Chapter 13. The Struggle for Air

Chapter 14. Showdown in Dalhart

Chapter 15. Duster's Eve

Chapter 16. Black Sunday

Chapter 17. A Call to Arms

Chapter 18. Goings

Chapter 19. Witnesses

Chapter 20. The Saddest Land

Chapter 21. Verdict

Chapter 22. Cornhusker II

Chapter 23. The Last Men

Chapter 24. Cornhusker III

Chapter 25. Rain

Epilogue

Notes and Sources