Finding genealogy linkages through Depression-era photographs

Wading through the thousands of files in the Library of Congress, this one stood out because it is the housing projects where my father, Dr. Rodney S. Wead, lived while boy growing up in Omaha, Nebraska.

We don’t know the man and young people in the picture. It was taken three years after Wead was born; his family had not moved into the housing development. In fact, Wead said that they were delighted when they moved into the Logan Fontanelle Housing facility because it was a “big step up” from their impoverished housing a few blocks away in a crowded rooming house.

Found my father’s housing unit

Keep searching archives. I did. Once my father viewed the photo (see below), he identified the now famous individuals whose families lived in Logal Fontenelle.

Often, we are hit with brick walls in our ancestral searches. There are thousands of photographs that were taken across the country of its citizens — especially Black Americans — as part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal or Works Progress Administration program that included Omaha during the 1930s.