Where tobacco is king
Seeking opportunity in rural Kentucky
PHOTOS BY MICHAEL SWENSEN
In this corner of rural Postindustrial America, where tobacco farming has been the main economic driver for decades, residents face challenges including joblessness, addiction, and the effects of climate change. Sometimes, the despair is on gruesome display.
Michael Swensen was born and raised outside of Pittsburgh, but he fell in love with small-town America when he moved to Athens, Ohio, and then Cynthiana, Kentucky. He aims to document the resilience of Appalachian communities beyond the dominant narratives.
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