Dust Bowl

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  • Coinciding with both drought and economic depression in the 1930s, the Dust Bowl was an ecological, agricultural, and financial disaster for people in a five-state area centered by the Oklahoma panhandle. For about ten years (1930–40) the effects of the Dust Bowl era were felt across a wide swath of the Great Plains region. Because of drought during these years, fields went bare as far north as South Dakota and Wyoming and as far south as Texas. Additionally, farmers and corporate agricultural entities failed to exercise proper crop rotation necessary to preserve nutrients in the soil. Because of this lack of foresight, repeated plowing, and overgrazing by cattle, a layer of loose topsoil developed and was easily picked up by windstorms and carried across the ...

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