"Migrant Mother," by Dorothea Lange

Description
During the Great Depression, government photographer Dorothea Lange took this picture at a migrant farmworkers' camp near Nipomo, California. Lange's brief caption recorded her impressions of the family's plight: "Destitute pea pickers ... a 32-year-old mother of seven children."
First published in a San Francisco newspaper, this poignant image became one of the most famous photographs of the Depression era, emblematic of the hardships suffered by poor migrant families. The "migrant mother," anonymous for many years, was later identified as Oklahoma native Florence Thompson.
Location
Currently not on view
Object Name
photograph
date made
1936
maker
Lange, Dorothea
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
Place Made
United States: California
ID Number
1983.0069.07
accession number
1983.0069
catalog number
83.69.7
subject
Government, Politics, and Reform
Photography
National Treasures exhibit
event
Great Depression
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Photographic History
National Treasures exhibit
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Publication title
Treasures of American History online exhibition
Publication author
National Museum of American History
Publication URL
http://americanhistory.si.edu/treasures

Visitor Comments

Add a comment about this object

**Please read before submitting the form**

Have a comment or question about this object to share with the community? Please use the form below. Approved comments will appear on this page and may receive a museum response (but we can't promise). Please note that we generally cannot answer questions about your own artifacts or tell you how much they are worth.

Have a question about anything else, or would you prefer a personal response? Please visit our FAQ or contact page.

Personal information will not be shared or result in unsolicited e-mail. See our privacy policy.

Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.