The goal of photography is to capture a moment, an idea, a thought, or an event and suspend it in time. Whether it is journalistic, editorial, representational, abstract, or artistic is not important in reaching that goal. Occasionally, as a photographer is striving toward their singular goal, they unwittingly meet another one.

Such is the case with these amazing depression-era color photographs published by the International Business Times; though they were taken at the time as recordings of events (though demonstrating the aesthetic sense of the accomplished photographer), the social and cultural distance between the depression and today has vaulted these images into pure artistry. They are truly breathtaking; scenes from a past world, a past America.

View the entire set of photographs on International Business Times: Rare Color Photos from Depression Era