The 'Rough Beauty' of a Poor Texas Town

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'Jug Riding' from Dave Anderson's book of photographs Rough Beauty. Dave Anderson hide caption

itoggle caption Dave Anderson
'Relaxing with the Guidrys' i

'Relaxing with the Guidrys' hide caption

itoggle caption
'Relaxing with the Guidrys'

'Relaxing with the Guidrys'

'Ray Wilson' i

'Ray Wilson' hide caption

itoggle caption
'Ray Wilson'

'Ray Wilson'

Vidor, Texas, has a reputation as a "Klan town," and that's what drew photographer Dave Anderson. He had heard of the local resistance to federal attempts in the 1990s to integrate a public-housing development. Members of the Ku Klux Klan staged marches and protests to keep Vidor white. They drove out black residents. Today, nearly all of the town's 11,440 residents are white.

But Anderson found something else in Vidor: a form of American poverty that has essentially remained unchanged for decades.

The title of Anderson's book, Rough Beauty, describes the images he captured of life in Vidor. He speaks with Madeleine Brand about his photos and the people who live in the Texas town.

Books Featured In This Story

Rough Beauty

by Dave Anderson and Anne Wilkes Tucker

Hardcover, 118 pages | purchase

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Dave Anderson and Anne Wilkes Tucker

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