Causes of the Dust Bowl

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Imagine being blinded by dirt and disoriented by wind. Imagine having to cover your faces whenever you left the house and having to cover your food whenever you ate. Well, welcome to the Dust Bowl. During the 1880s, farmers fled to the Southern Great Plans after hearing word that it was great for planting wheat. However there was an awful drought in the 1890s, which caused some farmers to leave. Most stayed, though, because those who stayed for three years got 320 acres of land. Farmers were having great success with their wheat up until the 1930s. During the 1930s, drought killed all of the wheat, and farmers and their families were struck with horrible dust storms. These were awful and depressing times for farmers. People died of dust pneumonia, people had to cover there faces and windows, and to sum up the Dust Bowl in one word can’t be done because there is no word to describe how awful these storms really were. But what really caused these dust bowls? Well it was a combination of things: destruction of grass, heavy use of machines, and lack of rain.

The first cause of the Dust Bowl was all of the destruction of grass. With so many farmers in the Southern Great Plains, a lot of grass was ripped up and used for farming. As the Texas Sheepherder once noted, “Grass is what counts. It’s what saves us all – far as we get saved…. Grass is what holds the earth together”. That quote pretty much summed up why destruction of grass was such a key point in the dust bowl. That is actually completely literal. The roots of the grass hold the dirt in place, but with so much grass missing, the wind could easily pick up the dirt and that is exactly what happened. In fact, since the 50 years of farming in the south, the amount of farmland used increased by 95 million acres. Imagine how much dirt that is. The destruction of the prairie grass was a huge factor in causing the Dust Bowl because it made the dirt looser and easier to get caught in the wind.

Another key factor...
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