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Portrait of a Place: Tennessee, 1974

2012 October 1

EPA’s Documerica Returns exhibit has wrapped up its Atlanta tour and is on its way to Chicago!

Through 2013, you can easily participate by using your smartphone or camera. Simply share any photos you are taking of landscapes, people, and the way of life today where you live and travel for State of the Environment.

A step further, help tell the stories of change, decades after Documerica.

Enter your best shots of Documerica scenes for a spot in the U.S. National Archives Exhibit set for Washington D.C., March – September, 2013. Use our Location Challenges or follow simple instructions at the bottom of this post to search for images near you. Entries accepted through State of the Environment on Flickr. Please include the Documerica image(s) you match.

Documerica Stories: Tennessee

DOCUMERICA: Miner Wayne Gipson, 39, with His Daughter Tabitha, 3. He Has Just Gotten Home From His Job as a Conveyor Belt Operator in a Non-Union Mine. as Soon as He Arrives He Takes a Shower and Changes Into Clothes to Do Livestock Chores with His Two Sons. Gipson Was Born and Raised in Palmer, Tennessee, But Now Lives with His Family near Gruetli, near Chattanooga. He Moved North to Work and Married There, But Returned Because He and His Wife Think It Is a Better Place to Live. December, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: Miner Wayne Gipson, 39, with His Daughter Tabitha, 3. He Has Just Gotten Home From His Job as a Conveyor Belt Operator in a Non-Union Mine. as Soon as He Arrives He Takes a Shower and Changes Into Clothes to Do Livestock Chores with His Two Sons. Gipson Was Born and Raised in Palmer, Tennessee, But Now Lives with His Family near Gruetli, near Chattanooga. He Moved North to Work and Married There, But Returned Because He and His Wife Think It Is a Better Place to Live. December, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: Michael, 14, and Darrell, 13, Are Sons of Wayne Gipson, a Miner and Minister Who Lives near Gruetli, Tennessee, near Chattanooga Darrell Is Shown in Some of His Father's Mining Gear. Their Father Arrives Home Promptly at 3:30 P.M. to Shower and Change Clothes. He Then Feeds Three Cows, and Some Pigs and Chickens with Help From the Boys. He Keeps the Animals to Give His Sons Something to Do after School December. 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: Michael, 14, and Darrell, 13, Are Sons of Wayne Gipson, a Miner and Minister Who Lives near Gruetli, Tennessee, near Chattanooga Darrell Is Shown in Some of His Fathers Mining Gear. Their Father Arrives Home Promptly at 3:30 P.M. to Shower and Change Clothes. He Then Feeds Three Cows, and Some Pigs and Chickens with Help From the Boys. He Keeps the Animals to Give His Sons Something to Do after School December. 1974 by Jack Corn

DOCUMERICA: Darrell Gipson, 13, Son of Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Gipson, Who Lives near Gruetli, Tennessee, near Chattanooga, Feeds Pigs after School. His Father Got Them and Other Livestock to Give the Boys a Sense of Responsibility. Mr. Gipson Was Born in Tennessee, But Moved North for a Job and Married There. Both Husband and Wife Had Fathers Who Were Miners and That Is the Job Wayne Returned To. The Family Prefers Life Here to the Northern Cities. December, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: Darrell Gipson, 13, Son of Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Gipson, Who Lives near Gruetli, Tennessee, near Chattanooga, Feeds Pigs after School. His Father Got Them and Other Livestock to Give the Boys a Sense of Responsibility. Mr. Gipson Was Born in Tennessee, But Moved North for a Job and Married There. Both Husband and Wife Had Fathers Who Were Miners and That Is the Job Wayne Returned To. The Family Prefers Life Here to the Northern Cities. December, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: The General Mine Foreman at One of the Tennessee Consolidated Coal Company Mines near Jasper and Chattanooga Stands beside the Shuttle Cars Used to Transport the Miners to Work. They Lay Down on the Cars to Clear the Three Foot High Ceilings During Their Two Mile Trip. It Is a Progressive Non-Union Mine That Sells Most of Its Metallurgical (High Grade) Coal to Japan. August, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: The General Mine Foreman at One of the Tennessee Consolidated Coal Company Mines near Jasper and Chattanooga Stands beside the Shuttle Cars Used to Transport the Miners to Work. They Lay Down on the Cars to Clear the Three Foot High Ceilings During Their Two Mile Trip. It Is a Progressive Non-Union Mine That Sells Most of Its Metallurgical (High Grade) Coal to Japan. August, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: George Wilson in His Drift Mine (One That Is Cut Straight Into a Hill) near Wilder and Cookeville, Tennessee. It Was Closed Down by Federal Mine Inspectors Because He Lacked a Non-Arcing Drill Wilson Said Such a Drill and Allied Equipment Would Cost Him $100,000 to Reopen the Mine. Note the Height of the Shaft. The Lines on the Side Are Called Escape Wires Which a Miner Could Use to Find His Way to Safety in the Event of a Mine Disaster. April, 1974 by Jack Corn.

DOCUMERICA: George Wilson in His Drift Mine (One That Is Cut Straight Into a Hill) near Wilder and Cookeville, Tennessee. It Was Closed Down by Federal Mine Inspectors Because He Lacked a Non-Arcing Drill Wilson Said Such a Drill and Allied Equipment Would Cost Him $100,000 to Reopen the Mine. Note the Height of the Shaft. The Lines on the Side Are Called Escape Wires Which a Miner Could Use to Find His Way to Safety in the Event of a Mine Disaster. April, 1974 by Jack Corn.

Browse the full Documerica collection to locate and match images that may have been taken closer to you. All ‘Then and Now’ entries will be considered for the larger Washington D.C. exhibit planned for March 8 – September 8, 2013.

When you follow that link above or by clicking this image below, you’ll come to a search page like this. Simply type in your town or state to see images of the past. Enjoy, have fun, and we look forward to your contributions to this historic project!

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

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