The Nerds in Lawrence have been prolific. Nerd Nite celebrated their 20th series last night. Prompted by a community book reading of "The Worst Hard Time" by Timothy Egan, the focus of the night was on the history and culture of the 1930's Dust Bowl. The term "rape of the land" seemed to have double meanings as presenters talked about depression era Kansas politics, farm equipment, and art. People in the audience tweeted and snickered as size and anatomy of plows were discussed ( they got bigger and stronger with improved technology). We learned that in the 1890's, populist Sockless Jerry Simpson did not wear socks, and derided those representatives who wore silk socks.
Presenter Beth Beavers, editor of the magazine "Farm Equipment" was a perfect choice for describing Depression era farm tractors and plows
"Erosion #2; Mother Earth Laid Bare" by Alexander Hogue
Kate Meyer gave a presentation about Dust Bowl Art