“Mission San Xavier del Bac” (Arizona), WPA Federal Writers’ Project American Guide Series, 1941
Arizona was one of the 48 states included in the American Guide series. The Arizona office of the Federal Writers’ Project also produced a guide to San Xavier del Bac, an 18th-century Spanish colonial mission near Tucson. In a separate program, the Works Progress Administration (WPA) employed artists to make posters advertising the guides.
Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress
The Federal Writers' Project
Congress created the Federal Writers’ Project in 1935 under the Works Progress Administration (WPA), a New Deal agency that employed millions of Americans on public-works projects during the Great Depression. Active until 1943, the Federal Writers’ Project enlisted more than 6,000 writers, historians, and other scholars in producing useful publications. Its American Guide series highlighted historical, cultural and geographical features of U.S. states, territories and cities. The Federal Writers’ Project also compiled oral histories that, like the American Guides, remain valuable resources for studying the nation’s past.