Days on the Family Farm: From the Golden Age through the Great Depression [NOOK Book]

Overview


From the beginning of the twentieth century to World War II, farm wife May Lyford Davis kept a daily chronicle that today offers a window into a way of life that has all but disappeared. May and her husband Elmo lived through two decades of prosperity, the Great Depression, and two World Wars in their Midwestern farming community. Like many women of her time, Davis kept diaries that captured the everyday events of the family farm; she also kept meticulous farming accounts. In doing so, she left an extraordinary ...

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Days on the Family Farm: From the Golden Age through the Great Depression

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Overview


From the beginning of the twentieth century to World War II, farm wife May Lyford Davis kept a daily chronicle that today offers a window into a way of life that has all but disappeared. May and her husband Elmo lived through two decades of prosperity, the Great Depression, and two World Wars in their Midwestern farming community. Like many women of her time, Davis kept diaries that captured the everyday events of the family farm; she also kept meticulous farming accounts. In doing so, she left an extraordinary record that reflects not only her own experiences but also the history of early twentieth-century American agriculture.

May and Elmo’s story, engagingly told by Carrie A. Meyer, showcases the large-scale evolution of agriculture from horses to automobiles and tractors, a surprisingly vibrant family and community life, and the business of commercial farming. Details such as what items were bought and sold, what was planted and harvested, the temperature and rainfall, births and deaths, and the direction of the wind are gathered to reveal a rich picture of a world shared by many small farmers.

With sustainable and small-scale farming again on the rise in the United States, Days on the Family Farm resonates with both the profound and mundane aspects of rural life—past and present—in the Midwest.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781452913285
  • Publisher: University of Minnesota Press
  • Publication date: 11/30/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 264
  • Sales rank: 1,239,421
  • File size: 7 MB

Meet the Author


Carrie A. Meyer grew up on a farm in Illinois and served as a Peace Corps volunteer before completing her Ph.D. in economics at the University of Illinois. She has published two previous books, The Economics and Politics of NGOs in Latin America and Land Reform in Latin America: The Dominican Case. She teaches economics at George Mason University.

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgments     ix
Introduction: Diaries of a Family Farm     1
The New Century Dawns, 1901-1910     13
The Glow of the Golden Age, 1910-1914     47
The Great War and Its Aftermath, 1914-1920     81
Down on the Farm in the Roaring Twenties     111
Depression, Drought, and the Next Generation, 1930-1934     141
Fits and Starts in the Late 1930s     173
Another Great War Fuels Change     199
Epilogue     211
Principal Characters     219
Expenses, Income, and Net Farm Savings     223
Primary Full-Time Outdoor Help     227
Crop Shares of Total Production, by Period     229
Notes     231
Index     243
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