Monday, February 3, 2014

International Year of Family Farming

The Food and Agriculture Organization has declared 2014 the International Year of Family Farming with the aim of highlighting the important role family and small farms play in feeding the world. To do our part, throughout 2014 we are featuring some of our favorite images and words from Iowa books on family farms. Here’s the latest!

“[My grandfather was] born in Mecklenburg, Germany, immigrated at age three with his parents to New Orleans, St. Louis, then Iowa…. Paying eight dollars an acre in gold, [Grandfather] claimed one hundred and sixty acres and immediately began erecting barns—the house could come later….

“From 1895 to 1925, those leaping years for American agriculture, his land value increased to six hundred dollars an acre and he made money on crops and herds. Only once, in the Depression of 1907, were times so tough that the family ate hand-ground cornmeal mush laced with fresh milk…. In the midst of the 1930s Depression, there was nothing for us to fear, not even fear itself; we could eat off the land….”

excerpt from We Have All Gone Away, by Curtis Harnack

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