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Dyess is a town in Mississippi County, Arkansas, United States. The town was founded as Dyess Colony in 1934 as part of the Roosevelt administration's agricultural relief and rehabilitation program and was the largest agrarian community established by the federal government during the Great Depression. The town is best remembered as the boyhood home of country singer-songwriter Johnny Cash. The surviving original buildings of the colony period are listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the "Dyess Colony Center."HistoryEstablishmentDyess Colony was established in Mississippi County, Arkansas in 1934 as part of the New Deal efforts of Franklin D. Roosevelt to provide economic relief to ameliorate suffering in the Great Depression. The experiment was the largest such community-building experiment established by the federal government during these years.The project was established by Mississippi Country cotton planter and local politician William Reynolds Dyess (1894-1936), director of the Arkansas Emergency Relief Administration, who initially sought the establishment of a self-supporting agricultural community housing 800 families upon unused Mississippi Delta farmland. Director Dyess established the entity remembered to history as "Dyess Colony" as "Colonization Project No. 1," plans for which were submitted to chief of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) Harry Hopkins early in 1934. The project was approved by Hopkins in March 1934.Plan your vacation with our United States trip planner and discover the best things to do in Dyess.
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