The Resettlement Administration (RA) was a New Deal U.S. federal agency that, between April 1935 and December 1936, relocated struggling urban and rural families to communities planned by the federal government. The organization had four divisions: Rural Rehabilitation, Rural Resettlement, Land Utilization, and Suburban Resettlement.
Gee’s Bend in Wilcox County, Alabama was an African American community that received assistance from the RA. Below are some photographs of Gee’s Bend and citizens in the area taken in 1939 by Marion Post Wolcott from the Library of Congress after two years of assistance.
1939 Nolan Pettway’s children bringing home wagon-load of fertilizer, Gees Bend, Alabama
1939 N.R.A. and Lindberg Pettway, sons of Nolan Pettway in front of their new home, Gees Bend, Alabama
Nolan Pettway and some of his family on their front porch, Gees Bend, Alabama
Part of old house and new home of Little Pettway’s family. Gee’s Bend, Alabama, photograph taken by M. P. Walcott
Old type of Gee’s Bend, Alabama, home belonging to Mark and Angelina Parker. It is in three sections: guests or company house, sleeping house and kitchen, photograph taken by M. P. Walcott
Gee’s Bend new and old home
Jorena Pettway sorting peas inside her smokehouse. She still has many fruits and vegetables which she canned last year. Gee’s Bend, Alabama, photograph my M. P. Walcott
Jorena Pettway making flower decorations for her home. She has made practically all her own furniture and her own bedspreads and chair covers from flour sacks, etc. Gee’s Bend, Alabama, photograph by M. P. Walcott 1939
Watching a Saturday afternoon ballgame (the first one). 1939 Gee’s Bend, Alabama
Gertrude, churning on Isaiah Pettway’s porch, Gees Bend, Alabama
Aunt Nellie Pettway, carrying wood from yard for fireplace. Gees Bend, Alabama
Aunt Sally, old midwife, the only doctor or nurse ever heard of in Gees Bend before project was started. Gees Bend, Alabama
Jorena Pettway and her daughter making chair cover out of bleached flour sacks and flower decorations from paper. She also made the chairs and practically all the furniture in the house. Gees Bend, Alabama
Revised with direct links to many sources and burial sites! This book includes the genealogy of and biography of William Barrett Travis of Alamo fame and Elisha Cottingham, the Alabama descendants from the Tapestry of Love, Historical Fiction Series by Donna R. Causey. Check out all Alabama Pioneers Biography books.