Photographer Al Clayton (b. 1934 – d. 2014) was trained as a medical photographer and photojournalist. Throughout the mid 1960s, he traveled through the Mississippi Delta, eastern Kentucky, Georgia, and Alabama, documenting poor people’s lives. In July 1967, his photographs were presented at a hearing on Capitol Hill, where they helped spur senators to call for increased funding for anti-poverty programs. These images were collected in Robert Coles’s book, Still Hungry in America (1969).
In 1972, the Clayton moved his freelance photography studio from Nashville to Atlanta, GA, where he remained active until his death in 2014. During his career, Clayton’s photography focused heavily on subjects related to the people, culture, and music of the American South. Many of Clayton’s photographs have appeared in publications including Look Magazine, Life, Time, Newsweek, U.S. News and World Report, New York Times, and Esquire.