My latest book:

The Road to Unforgetting gathers 175 of Pete Candler’s black-and-white film photographs from road trips across the American South from 1997 to 2022, along with his insightful essay on the imaginative potential of the unplanned detour. A meditation on “back-roading” with a film camera as a spiritual exercise, Road documents lesser-known, often unmarked, sites in the history of the South that exist off the main drag of collective memory. A powerful collaboration of word and image in search of deeper truths, Road points towards a more complete understanding of America’s most singular region.

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“Pete Candler and I share a deep and abiding love for the South, despite its troubled past and complicated present. The Road to Unforgetting is a nuanced and personal exploration of both, revealed by his words and his imagery to coexist poignantly, and perhaps uniquely, in the South.”


“As a deliberate condemnation of the sterility and cultural void of interstate travel, Pete Candler, with camera in-hand, set out to explore the back roads of the rural and small-town South. The result, a quarter-century later, is this engrossing visual compendium of what he saw, harrowing and humorous, heartfelt and humanized.  A unique testament to the power of the past to render itself in both fleeting and deeply embedded form.”

University of Georgia  

The Road to Unforgetting captures the region’s iconic buildings and landscapes with special power.  Pete Candler’s eloquent introduction and beautiful photographs track his pilgrimage along less traveled southern streets and roads from 1997 to 2022.  Candler cites how the W.P.A. Guides to southern states and The Green Book reveal the jagged, painful racial divide enforced on Black and white travelers in the past.  His photographs stand before us like spiritual signposts that animate roads, people, and buildings for the traveler.”

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill