Material History of American Religion Project

Picturing Faith: Religious America in Government Photography, 1935 - 1943

Table Blessing
Jack Delano
Carroll County, Georgia

As war waged in Europe and Asia, the FSA photographic division was called upon to provide pictures depicting the inner strength of Americans to magazines, newspapers, and museums. The production of propaganda rather than the documentation of poverty and social dislocation became a more pressing goal in the late 1930s and 1940s. Freedom to worship, one of Roosevelt’s “Four Freedoms,” was presented as an essential aspect of a democratic society.

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