Inner Strength: Mario Tama Photographs Appalachia
If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich.
–John F. Kennedy
The U.S. Census listed Owsley County, Kentucky as having the lowest median household income in the United States (outside of Puerto Rico), with more than 40% of residents living below the poverty line. Despite the fact that this region of Appalachia has a rather sorted history of blood feuds, there is an enormous sense of community among residents. Whether it comes in the form of volunteer labor to clean the local cemetery or a bag of much-needed food from the Owsley County Outreach Center’s Food Backpack Program, the residents in and around Booneville, Kentucky are proud of their heritage and are doing whatever it takes to preserve it. Getty Images photojournalist, Mario Tama, spent time in the area getting to know the people and documenting the daily life of some of Owsley County’s 5,000 residents. Rather than simply sensationalize the hardships, Tama’s photographs capture an honesty and even hint at a strength that is somehow greater than the sum of its parts.
[via The Big Picture]