There is a very fine article on the history of photography, and the history of the South, available from the fine journal Southern Cultures, here.
The title of the article is "Photography as History in the U.S. South," and the author is Grace Elizabeth Hale, who is Commonwealth Professor of American Studies and History at the University of Virginia and a 2018–2019 Carnegie Fellow.
She says, of her subject:
"We understand the South as a major site of U.S. history, a landscape littered with evidence of the past, from plantation slavery and the Civil War to the Civil Rights Movement.
"What fewer people know is that the region is also an essential location in the history of photography.
"For photographers making work in the world rather than the studio, the South has been a rich place to make images.
"At odds with the grand story of America as expanding freedoms, the region has been understood as both the national reservoir of cultural authenticity and the national cesspool of white supremacy.