Sunday, September 30, 2012

Remembering Hurricane Hazel

Virginia Hobbs remembered when Hurricane Hazel came to her farm for Special Memories: A Collection of stories by Chowan County Extension Homemakers
Hazel came storming through Chowan County in September of 1954. School let out early and we came slowly home on the bus.

After having a snack, we four children (three brothers and myself) had to go over to the packhouse (a barn tobacco was kept in) to work until supper. Mommy and Daddy and Grandmommy (Mama’s mom) was also working in the barn.

After a couple hours, grandmommy decided to go to the house. Now the wind was really blowing. She told Mommy she was going to the outhouse and then to the house to lie down.

About the time she would have gotten to the outhouse, we saw something flying through the air. Lo and behold, it was the outhouse. Mama screamed. Daddy laughed and we kids stood around shaking all over. Mama was sure her mommy was upside down in the outhouse. She and Daddy went running. But Grandmommy was safe. She had decided to go on to the house.

I still laugh thinking of the look on Mama’s face.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Early History of Home Demonstration Work in North Carolina

Home demonstration work actually began in North Carolina when Dr. Jane S. McKimmon was appointed State Home Demonstration Agent in November, 1911, to organize and conduct Canning Club work with farm girls. At that time Mrs. McKimmon was doing some Womens Institute work in the state and because of her experience, she was asked to take charge of this program of farm women and girls in an entirely new venture.

The original arrangement was to engage a woman in each of the 14 counties in the state to do two months work, in which she was expected to organize farm girls into groups of clubs and teach them to grow a tenth acre plot of tomatoes and can later what the family did not eat as fresh from the plot. These pioneer agents worked on their jobs eight or more months in the year, while they received pay for only two. They furnished their own transportation, many of them purchasing a horse and buggy which cost more than their salary of $150 per year.

The program was then off to a beginning in 1912 in the following counties:

Canning Clubs grew into home demonstration clubs and by 1914, 32 counties were organized. At that time two assistants were added to the state staff; one assistant with canning and the organization of clubs; the other, a food specialist who worked with the home demonstration agents, women and girls on food selections and preparation.

By 1918, the program was organized in 71 counties and 64 of these were employing full time home demonstration agents.

The state was divided into four supervisory districts in 1917 and district agents were appointed to supervise the work.

Organized home demonstration work for Negroes was begun in 1918 when emergency Negro home demonstration agents were placed in 189 counties and two cities for two months. When the emergency funds were withdrawn, hoever, only eight counties made appropriations.

Home demonstration work has grown rapidly from an organization in 14 counties in 1912 to 100 countie  in 1956. In 1914, the total enrollment of women and girls was 6,595. Today we have 2,587 clubs for white and Negro women with a membership of 67,945.

When Dr. McKimmon retired in 1937, Miss Ruth Current was appointed State Home Demonstration Agent. Under her guidance and leadership, the program has continued to grow and rapid strides have been made through the years.

As the program developed, it was necessary to increase county and state personnel to meet the needs of the people. Today there are 254 home demonstration agents: 194 white and 60 Negro, and 28 people on the state staff. There are 22 white staff at N.C. State College including the state Home Demonstration Agent, the Assistant State Home Demonstration Agent, six District Agents, and 14 specialists. There are six Negro staff at A. & T. College including an Assistant State Home Demonstration Agent, three District Agents, and two specialists.

The home demonstration program includes projects in foods and nutrition, clothing, home management, house furnishings, housing, canning, frozen foods, home marketing, crafts, family relations, and home beautification. The program also includes joint projects with the men in poultry, gardening, insect control, and consumer education.

Rural women are looking at their home and community problems and asking for assistance in meeting their needs and solving their problems. These are being solved through community organization and through cooperative programs with other agencies, such as
--Health, in cooperation with the State and County Public Health Department
--Recreation, in cooperation with the State Recreation Commission
--Good Reading, in cooperation with the State Library Commission
--Music, in cooperation with the State Music Department

These last four programs are carried by voluntary leaders. In addition to these, leaders are planning and carrying other programs in their local communities to meet their needs.

Development of leadership in North Carolina has been outstanding. There are 36,983 voluntary leaders assisting with the home demonstration program.


Home Demonstration is a division of the Cooperative Extension Service, which was provided for by the Smith-Lever Act of 1914.

The Act specifically stated that the purpose was to “aid in diffusing among the people of the United States useful and practical information on subjects relating to agriculture and home economics and to encourage the application of the same.”

It further provided that none of the funds under the Act could be used for teaching persons attending and enrolled at the college. It was to be an “extended service” from the land-grant college to the people of the State. It further provided that most of the funds available under the Act were to be matched with State and county appropriations.

The Capper-Katchum Act of 1928 and the Bankhead-Jones Act of 1935 provided funds for the further development of Extension work and in 1945 the Bankhead-Flannegan Act provided additional funds for the specific purpose of developing county Extension work.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Pearl Parker Pierce on Turning 100

Pearl Parker Pierce, who was born in 1897, was a school teacher and an Extension Homemaker who served as president of that organization’s state association in 1946. She also served in the Wayne County Board of Education for six years in the 1940s. She was interviewed by Becky Barclay of the Goldsboro News-Argus, which published the following story on the occasion of her 100th birthday, Sept. 21, 1997. Mrs. Pierce died September 10, the following year, just short of her 101st birthday.
In her 100 years of life, Pearl Pierce has seen the world she knew as a child change in many ways.
She has seen man take to the air and fly in an airplane. She has come out of the darkness with the mere flick of a switch thanks to electricity. She has turned her horses out to pasture to ride around in a horseless carriage.
Mrs. Pierce has seen other miraculous inventions such as television, telephone, radio, computer, vaccines for many illnesses.
She is celebrating her 100th birthday today with a party at Guardian Care.
She is the daughter of the late John and Addie Reynolds Parker. She was born in Sampson County Sept. 21, 1897, the oldest of seven children. She lived there six months, then moved to Clinton.
“We had the best home life when I was growing up,” she said. “We had a wonderful home life and I relive it every day.”
“Even though Momma had seven children, she knew where all of them were all the time. She had no problem keeping up with us. And she never had any problem straightening us out. I was born when kids minded.”
When she was a child, Mrs. Pierce’s family didn’t have many big holiday celebrations like people do today. “We’d get out in the yard and play,” she said. “We’d also hitch up the horse and buggy and go visiting family.
“I remember one Christmas we all hung up our stockings. Papa went out one day to feed the stock. When he came back in the house, his hat was all knocked in and snow was all over his clothes. He was panting like he was out of breath and had a great big apple in his hand.
“He said that our old rascal (Santa) wouldn’t come to our house any more. He told us that he had found Santa hiding in the barn and had whipped him. All of us kids cried and cried. Papa loved to tease us.”
Mrs. Pierce tried to help other families any way she could as a child. “I remember one family where the mother had convulsions,” she said, “and she fell in the fire and burned her face very badly. I got food together and a whole lot of clothes to take to her. When we got there and saw her, we couldn’t stand it and wanted to go home. Her eyebrows were burned off and her lips were parched.”
“Frequently on Sundays, we’d go out to Grandma’s house,” she said. “We all piled in the buggy, on the back, on the front, some sitting on others.
“It was about seven miles to Grandma’s house and it took us an hour to get there in the buggy.”
Her family belonged to the First Methodist Church in Clinton. Her father was a steward and they attended Sunday school and church every week.
Mrs. Pierce marvels at the many inventions she has seen. “The invention I remember seeing that impressed me the most of all was the first automobile that came into Clinton. It was a little red car.”
“Before that I rode horseback to go anywhere. I remember one afternoon when I was going home and the horse was tired. When we got home, he jumped over the fence. That scared me to death.”
She recalls learning to drive. “Papa just turned it over to me,” she said. “He let me take it and go anywhere I wanted to. You didn’t have to have a drivers’ license back then and I was only 12 or 13 when I began driving Papa’s car.”
Mrs. Pierce received her teaching certificate. She retired having taught in schools from the mountains to the coast. “I loved it and I didn’t have any trouble from my students,” she said. “I accomplished quite a lot during those years, a lot more than I could teaching now. I always wanted to be a teacher.”
She reminisced about teaching the mountains in 1925 when she first became a teacher. “There was one 18-year-old boy who would always talk back to me,” she said. “One day I told him not to talk back to me because it makes me very mad.
“He kept on doing it. Then he reached over and handed me a switch out of the corner and I put it on him. Then he handed me another switch and I wore it out.
“I was give out and he was, too. He was 18 and weighed about 200. He was the meanest boy in town and at school.
“The year before I went up there, the school sent me a record of the school. They had had 13 teachers and he run them all off. I told him and the other students that I had come to stay. I told them that if they were nice, I was nice. If they were ugly, I’d be just like that. I never had any more problems with that boy or the rest of the students.”
When she taught in Wayne County, Mrs. Pierce was on the board of education for six years. “While I was on the board, there were three schools that didn’t have gymnasiums,” she said. “We were trying to get gymnasiums for all of them.
“One morning we went to a meeting and were told that one of the schools would get one. I got up and went down to the commissioners office and told them there were two more schools that needed gymnasiums. I straightened them out and they gave me the other two.”
Mrs. Pierce has lived through two world wars. “I had a sweetheart, but luckily he didn’t have to go off to war. He was a master mechanic and they sent him to the shipyards. We later married.”
She married Albert W. Pierce, who died in 1967. The couple had no children. They came to Goldsboro in 1921, then moved to Nahunta in 1928.
When Mrs. Pierce and her husband first built their house in 1928 they had no electricity. “We used lamps. It was two or three years before we did get electricity,” she said.
Mrs. Pierce joined Nahunta Extension Homemakers Club in 1928. On the local level, she had the offices of president, secretary and treasurer. She was the only Wayne County person to serve as state president.
She is a member of Nahunta Friends Church, where she has served as clerk of monthly meetings, clerk of ministry and counsel and president of the Missionary Society. She was also pianist and Sunday school teacher for 40 years.
“When I first started playing the piano for church, there was one old man in there who wanted the hymns played very slowly, the way they had always been played. When I played the piano, I started moving it. He came to me one day and asked me if I didn’t believe I could play a little slower. I told him know. I know I couldn’t. And played right on,” she said.
Until she was 96, Mrs. Pierce lived in her own home. Then she moved Guardian Care, where she has lived the past four years. I can’t mention anything I haven’t seen change in my lifetime,” Mrs. Pierce said. “Everything has changed.”
Is there a secret to living to be 100? “No,” she said, “I didn’t do anything special.”

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Lillian Scott Wins State and National Awards, 1985

From the Tar Heel Homemakers  newspaper, a publication for members of the North Carolina Extension Homemakers Association. The Jan.-March 1986 issue had an article about Lillian Scott of Orange County, who received a national paraprofessional award in September 1985 for her work as an EFNEP Paraprofessional. She was a member of the Cedar Ridge Extension Homemakers Club.

Lillian Scott, program aide and Orange County Extension Homemaker, received the National Paraprofessional Award at the National Association of Extension Home Economists’ annual meeting in September in San Diego, California. She earlier received the State Paraprofessional Award and the Minnie Miller Brown Award of $150 at the N.C. Association of Extension Home Economists annual meeting.

Her name will be added to the Minnie Miller Brown Plaque.

“The purpose of the award is to recognize outstanding accomplishments of paraprofessionals in the use of imaginative and effective methods of reaching special audiences,” says Bonnie Davis, home economics Extension agent.

Lillian works with youth through the Expanded Foods and Nutrition Program, a program financed and designed for helping families with limited resources to upgrade their nutrition status.

As an adult, as well as youth aide, she maintained a high family and youth load. She reaches and works with more than 400 youth each year through community groups. “Motion for Life” and “Mousercise” have been the most effective teaching methods—a method where nutrition exercise/fitness and self-esteem were emphasized.

“The aerobic exercise adds great appeal to nutrition teaching-learning. Teaching methods that have worked well for Lillian are food shows, day camps, residence camps, learning gardens, tasting parties, and fun fairs,” said Mrs. Davis.

She has reached nearly 2,000 youth and adults with nutrition information working with many volunteers, individuals and through 53 groups.

Lillian is a member of the Cedar Ridge Extension Homemakers Club where she served several years as president. Her daughter, Serena, now serves as club president.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Magazine Tells N.C. History Through Stories of Twelve Women

Our State magazine featured an article on Jane S. McKimmon as part of its “Ladies First” tribute to North Carolina women in its March 2007 issue.

“We decided to chart a course through the past couple hundred years or so by recounting the experiences of 12 women: among them housewives, teachers, businesswomen, artists, inventors and more. In addition, we tell the story of a group of ladies who might have remained anonymous except for an extraordinary feat accomplished when they banded together with a single purpose.

“In honor of these and so many others, we celebrate the vision, the tenacity, the compassion—in short, the spirit—of the women of our state,” wrote Vickie Jarrett, Editor in Chief, concerning the focus of this issue.

The articles themselves are copyrighted, of course. Here are the women who were featured, along with a list of the names of people given in the stories and photographs.

--Jane S. McKimmon, “Home Work,” One woman so inspired hundreds of others across the state that they gladly came together to donate hard-earned butter-and-egg money to build the Jane S. McKimmon Center—by Diane Silcox-Jarrett. In photos with the article: Mrs. Henry Walker, Chancellor John T. Caldwell, Dr. Jack Suberman, Dr. Eloise Cofer, Dr. William Turner, J.T. Outlaw, Ada Dalla-Pozza. Mentioned in the article: Jane S. McKimmon, John Cudd, John T. Caldwell, Bob Scott, Ted Pemberton, Dr. Dennis Jackson, Dr. I.O. Schaub, Ada Dalla-Pozza, Rosalind Redfern.

--Betsy Dowdy, “Betsy’s Wild Ride,” In a story that has passed into legend and lore, a heroic teenager from Currituck County rides into the night to save the day—by Carole Moore. Names in the article include George Washington, Betsy Dowdy, Lord Dunmore, John Marshall, Myrtle Pritchard, Governor Tryon, General William Skinner, Colonel Isaac Gregory, Colonel Robert Howe, Samuel Jarvis, Joseph Dowdy, Tom Bembury, Dr. Stanley R. Riggs, Donna Campbell Smith, Paul Revere.

--Harriet Ann Jacobs, “Hideaway Slave” During her lifetime, Harriet Ann Jacobs experienced the despair of slavery. But she faced that hopelessness with remarkable hope, courage, and optimism—ultimately “bearing the fragrance of freedom.”—by Scotti Kent. Names in the article include: Samuel Morse, John Marshall, James Davis, Daniel Jacobs, Delilah Jacobs, John Jacobs, Joseph and Louisa Matilda Jacobs, Amy Post.

--Anna Burwell, “An Educated Woman,” A progressive educator, schoolmistress Ann Burwell provided her young female students with a curriculum that far exceeded the norms of the day—by Kathy Grant Westbrook. In photos with the article are Anna Burwell and the Rev. Burwell. Mentioned in the article are: Margaret Anna Robertson, William and Ann Spotswood Robertson, Susan Catharine Spotswood, Rev. Robert Burwell, Mary and John Burwell, Elizabeth “Lizzy” Hobbs, Elizabeth Hobbs Keckly, Mary Todd Lincoln, Elvan Cobb, Cheryl F. Junk, Mary and Susan Murphy, Jennifer Fleischner, Lavinia Cole Roberts, Lee Smith, Mariah Snow.

--Addie Clawson, “Appalachian Mail Carrier,” Although her occupation was difficult and considered a man’s job, Addie Clawson made it her own—by Marla Hardee Milling. Mentioned in the article are: Julia Ebel, Betty Lou Wells, Bland Clawson, Rosalee and Melvin Norris, Tommy Critcher.

--Ruth Faison Shaw, “Healing Arts,” Although usually considered a medium of children’s art, finger painting has a more sophisticated use as an art therapy tool, thanks to inventor and visionary educator Ruth Faison Shaw—by Charles Blackburn Jr. Photos with the article picture Ruth Faison Shaw and Bryan Carey. Mentioned in the article are: Bryan Carey, John Thomas Payne, Jennifer Falchi, H.G. Wells, Bertrand Russell, Jack Benny, Walt Disney, Olivia Falchi.

--Ethel Turlington and daughter Hortense, “Lady Farmers,” Back when fathers taught sons how to farm and few women worked outside the home, a determined young widow set an example for her daughter on how to survive and beat the odds—by Jane C. Pittard. Pictured are Ethel and Hortense Turlington. Mentioned in the article are: John M. Turlington, Jack Leach.

--Hattie Leeper, “Chatty Hatty,” If you were a Charlotte-area radio listener back in the 1950s and ‘60s with your dial tuned to station WGIV, chances were good that you heard the voice of a broadcasting pioneer and legend—by Alan Hodge. The article includes several photos of Hattie Leeper, and people mentioned include:  D.J. Eugene “Genial Gene” Potts, Francis Fitzgerald, Larry Keith, Mary Wells, George “Gorgeous George” Hall

--Betty Feezor, “Cooking With Betty,” Home economist Betty Feezor won a loyal following hosting her namesake television show for 24 years on Charlotte’s WBTV—by Erica Derr. Photos show Betty and Turner Feezor and their children. Mentioned in the article are: David Eades, Audrey Feezor Turner, Gaines Kelly, Susie McIntyre, W. Stanley Moore, Charles Crutchfield.

--Margaret King, “Ordinary Hero,” Read between the lines of the lives of the quiet and unassuming among us, and you may find an extraordinary woman like Margaret King—by Janet C. Pittard. Photos show Lt. Col. Margaret Belva Mizelle in 1942, Johnnie Johnson, and Frances Meal. The article mentions Charles Wesley Mizelle, Mary Ellen Asbell Mizell, Ernestine Kennedy, Polly Witherspoon, Truman Lewis King.

--Mebane Holoman Burgwyn, “Artistic Heritage,” three women—mother, daughter, and granddaughter—create a timeline of imaginative expression in poetry, stories, dance, and sculpture—by Wendy Murray. Photos show Mebane Burgwyn, Pattie Vaughn White, and granddaughter Jo, and Jo’s grandson Edward. Mentioned in the article are: Josephine Burgwyn Pratt, Pattie Vaughn White, Henry Holoman, Kelly Harris, Marion, Mebane, Frank, and Judith Holoman, John Burgwyn, James Pratt, Dr. Barry Johnson.

This issue of Our State magazine also has an interesting article on Horace Kephart, a writer who moved to western North Carolina in 1904. Kephart would go on to write Our Southern Highlanders, a book about the people he met and a record of what life was like in Appalachia in the early 20th century. Western Carolina University has an interesting online exhibit on Kephart, which is at The exhibit includes photos of people living in western North Carolina.

Our State magazine is online at Some of the magazine’s issues are archived but the archives do not go as far back as March 2007, the issue mentioned here.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

“Extension Homemakers Today,” 1971

“Extension Homemakers Today,” 1971

The North Carolina Home Demonstration Clubs and the State Council of Home Demonstration Clubs of North Carolina merged in 1966 as the N.C. Extension Homemakers Association. Five years later we find this group of some 40,000 women increasingly active in the community projects that influence their families and neighbors.

In 1969 during the General Assembly, members of the Citizenship Committee to learn more about their state government at work, visited the state legislature, attending committee meetings, talked to their representatives, and listed to debate by the assembled delegates. In April 1970, 70 Extension Homemakers attended a citizenship seminar in Washington, D.C., planned for them to observe and study our national government. The National 4-H Foundation cooperated by providing background briefings. The women had briefings as well at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Department of Housing and Urban Affairs, the Supreme Court, and the Federal City College. At Federal City College they observed new techniques for reaching the poor and learned that the Nutrition Aides in a city like Washington operate in a manner similar to those in the counties of North Carolina.

They visited the Congress during the vote on the Carswell* nomination and heard Senators Ervin and Jordan and their Congressmen discuss issues before Congress that affect North Carolina citizen. By happenstance they stood in the crowd on the East Lawn of the White House to see and hear President Nixon welcome West German Chancellor Willie Brandt.

One of the homemakers expressed her role for this part of her continuing education program they enjoyed by saying “Shakespeare says ‘All the world is a stage’ and each citizen has a role to play. May each of us be guided to do our part well!”

When a builder of low income housing in Iredell County wanted to demonstrate that homemaking skills can be used in decorating a home inexpensively and attractively, the Extension Homemakers arose to the challenge with skills learned from Extension workshops and lesson the women furnished and decorated the three-room house for under $1,000 by renovating used furniture and constructing simple built-ins.

In Winston-Salem last March 12, the local papers queried “where did all the people come from?” They were describing the crowd attending Consumerama, a three-day consumer education and trade fair initiated and developed by the Forsyth County Extension Homemakers. More than 12,000 women and men, too, from throughout the state attended the classes in textiles, clothing, house furnishings, and foods, and learned about new developments in related products from 80 exhibiters—all because a group of Extension homemakers “thought big” about the needs for their community.

“Operation Santa Claus” provides toys, clothing, and gifts for patients in the state’s mental hospital and other extended care centers. Extension Homemakers have been recognized repeatedly for their service to this project, making thousands of garments, dressing dolls, and visiting the centers.

“We couldn’t run the VA Hospital without the Rowan Extension Homemaker volunteers” say the officials at the administration of this Veteran’s hospital in Salisbury.

At Commodity Distribution Centers in many counties chances are that the lady demonstrating the use of the latest addition to the commodity food list will be an Extension Homemaker.

When the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education program was funded to the N.C. Agricultural Extension Service in November, 1968, several of the program aides employ to work with low income homemakers to improve their level of food consumption and nutrition were Extension Homemakers. These Extension Homemakers meet the criteria for employment because they learned many of the skills they teach from Extension Homemaker Club programs; they have limited incomes; and they have empathy for those with whom they work.

They write in their weekly logs about the problem families whom they are teaching, of their small and large successes in improving the family’s food habits, and of the related improvements in sanitation, cleanliness, housing and self pride that come as the aides teach and befriend them. One aide summarizes:

“The role of an Expanded Nutrition program aide has really been an educational one for me, as well as for the people with whom I work. I have learned about hardship, poverty, ignorance, and hunger. The people that I work with have learned the value of a well-balanced meal, cleanliness, and the desire for better homes.”

“To see a tiny bit of improvement is encouragement enough to make an E.N.P. aide work even harder with a family when all seems hopeless.”
Extension Homemakers have been actively engaged in the Governor’s Beautification Committee. Mrs. Henry Walker was a member of the committee when it was first formed. Many of the village and community projects for the Years of Beauty Contest now in action are being developed by these concerned women.

The 4-H Club program finds many of its leaders among the Extension Homemakers—for they appreciate the need to help develop the youth of North Carolina. Recently a 4-H agent in a southwest county declared concerning an Extension Homemaker who is a 4-H leader, “She is like having another agent on the staff.”

The Community Resource Development Area Development Associations have benefited from the leadership developed by the Extension Homemakers. Many women who have assisted in the development of this program which involves the total family in community, county, and multi-county development, have been leaders at the various levels of the Extension Homemakers Association. Their experiences and training in this association made them aware of the needs of the area and provides them with the knowledge and skills needed to share in this movement with civic and governmental organization leaders.

The leadership ladder helps develop the potential of the Extension Homemaker Club member. Opportunities for organization offices and for roles as teacher-leader abound. These women are sought as teachers for homemaker skills by the community colleges and as aides in the school system.

Extension Homemakers are finding their place in other roles as well. Mrs. Foy Goodin, President, 1968, is a member of the Governor’s Health Council. Mrs. John Winfield, President, 1964, is an N.C. Demoncratic Committeewoman. Mrs. Thetis Gerald was featured in 1965 by Ebony as an outstanding homemaker. Mrs. Gilbert English, President, 1960, and Mrs. Charles Graham, President, 1954, have been officers of the National Extension Homemakers Association.

Club women throughout the state help develop and support their leaders in their state and national organization. With membership dues of less than a dollar a year, the organization is represented yearly at their national meeting by some 30 women and triennially by seven women attending the Associated County Women of the World. The next meeting for which delegates are now being selected will be held in Oslo, Norway, in 1971. These dues also provide for a scholarship loan fund to aid some 20 girls yearly to attend college.

Annually at district meetings, from 400 to 1,000 homemakers participate in a one-day learning experience that highlights the relevant concern of the year. Recent topics have included drug abuse, women’s rights, family relations, the generation gap, and environmental pollution.

This group of Tarheel women have come a long way, and while you’ll still see them in their farm homes, you’ll see them also in urban homes, shopping in suburbia supermarkets, working factories and schools, in North Carolina cities as volunteers in many of North Carolina’s service programs.
*President Nixon nominated G. Harrold Carswell to the Supreme Court. The nomination was defeated on April 8, 1970. Nixon then nominated Harry Blackmon, who was confirmed, 94 to 0.

Monday, September 24, 2012

NC Farm News Roundup, September, 1947

By F.H. Jeter, Extension Editor, N.C. State College, Raleigh, as published in the Wilmington Star, Sept. 30, 1947.

North Carolina suffers a tremendous loss each season from fires which destroy tobacco curing barns and pack houses. For instance, farmers in Johnston County report that they lost 100 barns, which, with their contents were worth $100,000. A report comes from Nash County saying that the growers in that county have lost 80 barns this season. Of the 80 barns destroyed, 28 were fired with oil; 49 with wood; two with coal stokers, and done with a coal grate. The Nash County growers reported that the principal cause of their fires was from dried tobacco leaves and sticks falling on the hot flues. This being true, said M.E. Hollowell, farm agent, a lot of loss could be avoided each season by the very simple expedient of stretching some poultry wire over the flues to catch any leaves or sticks that might fall. There is no sense in losing the result of so much hard work when a little wire netting over the hot flues will save the barn and its contents.

E.H. Garrison, farm agent, says that 27 barns were lost down in Moore County this season. Most of the losses cannot be accounted for, but it is very likely that these fires also were caused largely by the dry tobacco leaves or the sticks falling on the hot flues.

Mr. Garrison also reports continued interest in farm fish pounds by landowners of Moore County. He has just finished surveying sites for M.C. Boyette of Carthage and H.A. Jackson of Carthage. The two ponds will cover over 49 acres, which is a little large for the best farm fish pond.

J.H. Rice of Moore County is installing a water system in his home by bringing in water through a siphon system from a well 48 feet higher than the home. Mr. Rice says if he can work this out the only expense to getting the water into his residence will be the cost of the pipe. He will have no pumping expense whatsoever.

Moore County people also are going ahead with their alfalfa plantings. The total orders for seed to date call for 1,700 pounds and a number of other small orders are being made which will make the total amount of seed run to right around 2,000 pounds for this season. Sandhill growers are taking a renewed interest in their dewberries, too. The vines have made good growth and they are clean and free of disease.

Scotland is no longer a one-crop, cotton-producing county. Farm agent E.O. McMahan says that a recent report by the North Carolina Crop Improvement Association shows that Scotland is now well up in the front as a section growing certified small grain seed. Scotland County farmers produced 33 per cent of all the small grain seed certified by the Crop Improvement Association for 1946. They produce 2 per cent of the certified wheat seed; 38 per cent of the certified oats; and 17 per cent of the certified barley seed. The John F. McNair Company of Laurinburg led the entire state in the amount of wheat certified for seed with 6,510 bushels. P.M. Gilcrist of Laurinburg had more bushels of barley certified than any other man in the state. It does not seem to be generally known, but Scotland County has some of the best farmers in North Carolina.

Speaking of good farmers, however, Cyrus McNell of Broadway, Route 1, in Harnett County, was in Washington, D.C., recently to secure a patent for a tobacco looping machine which he has invented. Mr. McNell used his machine regularly during the recent curing season and says that it saved him right around $15 a day in labor. The machine, he claims, did the work of two expert loopers and did it with much more ease.

There has been some cholera among the swine herds of Harnett County, but on the whole, farming affairs are moving along in good shape down there. Cotton is opening fast; ginning is underway; much fine hay has been housed; and considerable fall and winter grazing is being put into the ground.

In Halifax County, the Weldon Rotary Club is starting a purebred pig club chain in Halifax and Northampton counties. Gilts will be given to a select group of boys, who will in turn pass on the first nice gilt to some other deserving boy. W.O. Davis says that R.C. Batchlor, manager of the Douglas Hill Farm, will send five of his registered Poland China hogs to the type conference to be held in Orangeburg, South Carolina, next Wednesday, September 25.

Construction also has been started on the new freezer locker plant at Roanoke Rapids. This will be the second such plant in Halifax and will be of great value to the local people as an aid in the saving and curing of meats.

Mr. Davis says the cotton and peanuts crops of that county have improved tremendously during the recent dry days and that good yields may yet be secured.

There is a renewed interest up there in the drainage of farm lands through the use of dynamite. Farms simply cannot get any ditching done by hand, and during the war their drainage ditches grew up in weeds and bushes. Some cleaning out must be done now, and dynamite offers the only solution.

Growers of strawberries in Duplin County are busy getting the grass out of their vines. While everyone is busy with tobacco, very little work can be done with other crops in that section, so the strawberry fields grow up in grass and weeds. All of this is being cleared out now since most of the border tobacco has been placed on the market.

Speaking of fires in tobacco barns, L.F. Weeks, farm agent in Duplin, says that many of these fires are caused by plain old-fashioned carelessness. One man went into his barn down there the other day, lighted up a cigarette, and flipped the match up into the dry cured leaf. He then had to get out quickly and to watch in dismay while his barn and all its contents went up in flames.

The cotton growers down there say it is almost impossible to get labor to pick cotton, especially from among those who grew any tobacco at all this year.

Mr. Weeks says that C.H. Holland of Kenansville has not fed a bale of hay to either his workstock or his cattle in 12 years. The animals harvest all of their own roughage in the form of grazing, because as Mr. Holland puts it, “I learned 12 years ago that it is cheaper to provide 12 months of grazing, let the cattle do their own work gathering it, than it is for me to try to harvest and cure roughage for them.”

Since Mr. Holland has been following this plan, his cattle stay in much better condition than before. He keeps about 12 head of cows and three work animals. For these, he maintains a good 3-acre permanent pasture, several acres of lespedeza, and grows additional small grain for grazing. He has another field of 26 acres which is planted to lespedeza and from which he harvests and sells the hay produced each summer.

Some discouraging reports come from the Northeaster peanut belt. Martin growers say their crop is at least two or three weeks late and that the set of nuts is light.

Chowan growers who dusted their peanuts with sulphur, however, are reporting fine results. In some places, where the peanuts were dusted three times to control leafspot, as compared with no dustings, about 78 per cent of the dusted leaves showed no leafspot whatsoever. However, where the plants were not dusted, there was leafspot on 82 percent of all the plants. Then, too, the leaves on the undusted peanuts have dropped off for at least 5 inches of the lower portion of the stems, while the dusted peanuts show no shedding to speak of—less than 1 inch. Those how have dusted their crops this season saya that the vines have better color; there is considerably less shedding of the leaf; and there is a heavier setting of the nuts. Hutchins Winborne of the Cross Roads community reports that his dusted peanuts have about twice as many nuts as those which are undusted.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Nickels for Know-How; Farmers Vote for Tax, 1954

From the September, 1954, issue of Extension Farm-News
E.Y. Floyd of Raleigh, chairman of the Nickels for Know-How referendum, points to an important date in the lives of North Carolina farm people.
Friday, October 15, users of feed and fertilizer will go to the polls and decide whether or not to continue the expanded agricultural and educational program they started three years ago.
In 1951, they voted 68,283 to 7,088 for Nickels for Know-How. In all, the program is paying for 38 new research and educational programs in North Carolina.
D.W. Colvard, dean of the School of Agriculture [at N.C. State College, Raleigh], says:
“I don’t know of a parallel program that has gotten research together on problems of more direct importance to North Carolina.
“…the issue in this election is: Do we have problems in agriculture that research and education can solve?”
The question voters will be asked to answer on October 15 is whether they are for or against:
“Continuing the present program of adding 5 cents per ton to the price of feed and fertilizer for an additional three years (beginning January 1, 1955) for supplementing an expanding agricultural research and educational program in North Carolina.”
Lex Ray, director of the Agricultural Foundation, which administers the program, reports all 100 local committees met the deadline of August 15 for setting their polling places and are now doing educational work in an attempt to surpass the original vote.
[The article went on to show photos of 17 of the 38 people at work, courtesy of Nickels money. Photo captions follow.]
--Weed Scientist R.P. Upchurch is seeking—and in some cases has found—chemical weed killers that will be effective to cotton, forages, peanuts and soybeans.
--Entomologist J.R. Dogger is finding ways to destroy field and forage crop insects that rob North Carolina of $11 million a year. He has found controls for green June beetle grubs and a dual weapon against thrips and southern rootworm in peanuts.
--Poultry Nutritionist C.H. Hill has found there’s no substitute for good feed. Constant feeding of drugs and antibiotics at high levels wastes money and, instead of speeding growth, slows it up.
--Poultry Scientist H.W. Garren is trying to develop long-term immunity to disease in chickens. His work won him North America’s top poultry research award last year.
--Crop Scientist R.P. Moore is trying to overcome the universal waste of money, muscle, time and machinery that goes into planting seed which never becomes part of a crop. Better seed and seeding practices are the fruit of this work.
--Economist W.D. Toussaint is helping plug a dollar leak caused by uneconomical marketing. He has already concluded a valuable study of grain marketing and storage.
--Tobacco Specialist H.H. Nau is primarily concerned with burley problems, but he works with farmers throughout the state. His promotion of burley priming alone would justify his employment. Many farmers have followed his advice, primed their burley, and added 400 pounds an acre to their crop.
--Nematologist J.N. Sasser seeks a solution to the nematode problem. In North Carolina nematodes destroy $30 million worth of tobacco a year; they also lower disease resistance.
--Chemist T.G. Bowery is studying the effects of pesticide residues on soils, yields, subsequent crops and plant and animal life.
--Cotton evaluation is Caswell Williams’ job. He is helping plant breeders find out whether one variety can fully meet North Carolina’s needs.
--Home Demonstration Editor Jean Anderson’s news and feature stories have helped bring the Tar Heel farm wife the recognition she deserves and the information she needs. Her work appears regularly in local, state and national publications.
--Horticulture Specialist T.W. Flowers is bringing garden know-how to Negro farmers, who operate 21 per cent of the state’s farms. A good home garden is worth at least $400 to the average family.
--Challenge Specialist L.D. Naugher is part of the team that has helped increase the number of “Challenge” counties from 34 to 86. Twenty-five of these counties have definite programs of action.
--Peanut Specialist Astor Perry says the state could double its income from peanuts. Perry is having remarkable success in bringing farmers the know-how that can make this possible.
--Challenge Editor Joe Hancock helps county workers put their programs on paper—a preliminary step to putting them in action.
--Radio and Television Specialist Ted Hyman initiated and conducts the nation’s first daily farm broadcast originating form a college campus. This program brings farm people the latest know-how from State College.
--Challenge Specialist Florence Cox helps show the way that leads to the goals of the Challenge. Without such workers, the Challenge might become just another noble plan, forgotten because nobody had the full-time responsibility for seeing that it worked.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Dr. O.B. Copeland to Replace Frank Jeter, 1955

Sept. 26, 1955
By Bill Humphries, North Carolina Agricultural Extension Service, N.C. State College, Raleigh
Man with a problem is Dean of Agriculture D.W. Colvard of N.C. State College.
He has the responsibility of finding someone to succeed the late Dr. Frank H. Jeter as head of the college’s Division of Agricultural Information.
Thus far little progress has been made, but Dean Colvard is giving serious thought to the matter and is consulting with persons who are familiar with the job and who know the qualifications needed to fill it. He spent two entire days on it last week.
A committee probably will be set up to aid in making the selection, but the procedures to be followed has not yet been worked out.
Dr. Colvard is anxious to move as rapidly as possible in filling the vacancy. However, he also wants to be sure that the college gets the best qualified man available. Men like Frank Jeter just aren’t easy to find.
Meanwhile, speculation centers around several persons, come local and some out-of-state. Among the latter are Lane Palmer, fomerly with the college but now with Farm Journal in Philadelphia, and Louis H. Wilson, ex-editor of the State Department of Agriculture (when Kerr Scott was commissioner) and also formerly with the college, now with the National Plant Food Institute in Washington.
Palmer, who masterminded the publicity campaigns for “Nickels for Know-How” and for the “Challenge” program a few years ago, has risen rapidly in the ranks at Farm Journal and is known to be well satisfied with his job there. There is some question as to whether he would consider returning to North Carolina. He is a native of Utah and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin.
Wilson is highly regarded as a commercial publicist. This summer he was chosen to receive the Reuben Brigham Award present annually by the American Association of Agricultural College Editors. Wilson is a Tar Heel native.
There are, of course, other possibilities also. At this state, it’s anybody’s guess as to who the final selection will be.
Dr. O.B. Copeland of the University of Georgia is expected to become the director of the Division of Agricultural Information at North Carolina State College.
If his selection is confirmed by the executive committee of the college, he will succeed the late Dr. Frank Jeter, for many years director of the information division.
Dr. Carey H. Bostian, chancellor of State College, refused to comment on the report, saying it was the duty of the executive committee to make the appointments. He did not, however, deny the report that Dr. Copeland will be recommended for the position.
Dr. D.W. Colvard, dean of the School of Agriculture, was unavailable for comment.
The unofficial reports are that Dr. Copeland will report for duty at State College on Feb. 15.
He is said to have both a master’s degree and a Ph.D., the latter degree from the University of Wisconsin.
He is presently employed at the University of Georgia where he is extension information director. Efforts to obtain more information about him from the University of Georgia failed. It was reported there that his biographical data is available from the dean at North Carolina State College.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Newspapers Praise Frank Jeter's Work, 1955

Editorial in the Brevard Transylvania Times, on Sept. 22, 1955
The sudden passing of Frank H. Jeter, noted director of the Department of Agriculture Information at State College, brought to a close a career of service which reached all of our state. Because of this man, more farmers know more about agricultural progress and are able to live fuller lives. Widely known for his writing, public speaking and radio broadcasts, Dr. Jeter was able to see the agriculture picture in its entirety and could interpret the practical in such a manner that all farmers could understand it.
He understood all phases of arm life, the 4-H clubs, FFA, H.D. clubs and all other organizations which make for better understanding and progress in rural life. His enthusiastic support of these and other worthwhile farm organizations won for him thousands of friends.
Not only was he successful and influential in his profession, but was dedicated to service in many other fields of civic, social and religious life.
We feel that in his death North Carolina has sustained a great loss, but we are conscious of the broad service which he rendered throughout his life and know that his efforts have made this state a better place in which to live.
Knowing that the truth shall make us free, we can be thankful for his ability and untiring efforts in bringing worthwhile information to rural North Carolina and helping farmers to free themselves from undated methods by keeping up on changes and progress in agriculture.
Dr. Jeter’s life of dedicated service should prove an inspiration to all who follow him.
Editorial in the Lumberton Robesonian, printed September 19, 1955
For 39 years, the people of Robeson County have benefited from the services of Dr. Frank H. Jeter, director of agricultural information at N.C. State College. They have had no exclusive claim on these services, for Dr. Jeter worked for the whole state. But the need for agricultural information has been as great here as anywhere, and Dr. Jeter filled that need better, pherhaps, than he could have done by living here.
State College has been a productive mine of information on farming methods. Dr. Jeter was the man in charge of distributing that information to the public, by means of press, radio and television. The Robesonian acknowledges with gratitude its debt to Dr. Jeter for the thousands of farm stories that have passed through his hands on their way to this and other newspapers.
Occasionally, Dr. Jeter visited Robeson County, speaking at public gatherings. He always had something worth while to say, but he was more likely to be remembered for his wit and his friendly manner. He was a trustee of Presbyterian Junior College at Maxton and a member of a number of professional and honorary organizations, but was just as at home at a country barbecue or fish fry. Whenever he made a talk, he had the least need of anybody to say, “It’s a pleasure to be here,” because he showed so readily his enjoyment of any occasion and the people who shared it with him.
Morganton News-Herald, September 22, 1955
There is no way to measure the influence on North Carolina agriculture of Frank H. Jeter, agriculture editor of State College, who died last week in Raleigh.
A pioneer in an important field, he had held the position since 1914 except for a two-year period in the early ‘20s, serving with such success that Dr. Carey H. Bostian, chancellor of State College, said that his work has “made the rural people of North Carolina better informed than any similar group in the United States.”
Dr. Jeter (he received an honorary degree of doctor of science from Clemson College in 1948) held the affection and confidence of newspaper people throughout the state, and his weekly packets of “farm news” from State College were welcomed—and printed—by small town, non-daily newspapers which used little else from other sources not originating in their home towns. His influence on the farm pages of larger city dailies was tremendous.
Mr. Jeter had the rare ability of interpreting for easy reading the agricultural work at State College, contributing to the spread of practical, scientific knowledge. And his work presented to non-farm readers the problems of rural families in a way that led to greater understanding between urban and rural Tar Heels.
He has left as a monument to his year-after-year work a well-informed farm population which enjoys a degree of sympathetic understanding from its city cousins.
Editorial from the Goldboro News-Argus, printed September 23, 1955
Remembering Frank H. Jeter Sr.
Death has claimed Dr. Frank H. Jeter Sr., editor of the North Carolina Extension Service at State College, at the age of 65. While Dr. Jeter was known to have been in poor health for several years, his sudden death was quite unexpected and came as a shock to the thousands of people over North Caroina who knew him intimately and called him friend.
Frank Jeter came to North Carolina State College for the first time in 1917 and over the years he made a great contribution to the development of modern agriculture in North Carolina. His public relations department at State College was one of the most efficient and most thorough and most hard working to be found anywhere. His department had a steady flow of valuable information to farmers which reached newspapers and radio stations several times a week throughout the state. In addition, Frank Jeter went up and down North Carolina preaching better farming, more balance in farming, and a new day in agriculture. Everywhere he was heard gladly because he was a man of understanding and genial sympathy and good humor.
His work attracted national attention and his college, Clemson of South Carolina, was pleased to confer the doctorate honorary degree on his several years ago.
People throughout Wayne County knew Frank Jeter. He appeared in every community in the county in recent years and appeared often in Goldsboro before the Kiwanis Club. They will feel that they have lost a personal friend in his going.
Though Frank Jeter is gone, he will never quite leave us. The good work and the good gospel of better farming that he preached so effectively will go on throughout time as a memorial to a good life.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Frank Jeter Loved His Job, 1955

Frank Jeter, Extension editor and director of the Division of Agricultural Information, died unexpectedly on Friday, September 16, 1955. He had appeared to be in good health, working in the office that day and completing a manuscript at home in the evening. Jeter had worked at N.C. State for 39 years.
The following is what Extension Farm-News, a monthly newsletter for employees of the Extension Service, had to say about the loss of Mr. Jeter.
Writing “Personal Mention,” which for so many years more than filled this page, was Frank Jeter’s favorite job. He wrote about the people he called by their first names, and he never ran out of material. It was truly a personal communication between the veteran editor and the friends he worked with and often saw. It wasn’t the kind of column that lives longer than the personality from which it sprang. It developed out of 40 years of traveling to distant and obscure places two and three times a week to make speeches before people what were never obscure.
It was Frank Jeter’s belief, and he stated it often, that his job wasn’t complete until the family that lived at the end of the farthest road had been reached. He was no detailer, but he found time to answer every request that came his way—whether it was from the Congressman preparing a speech or the third-grader who wanted some information on agriculture to help her write a paper. Most every mail brought both kinds of letters.
Frank Jeter grew up with the Extension Service, but he never reminisced to any great extent. He had plenty of accomplishments to look back on, but he was too full of the future to think long about the past. Of the hundreds of letters and editorials that paid tribute to him, we don’t recall one that referred to his death as “tragic.” There was nothing tragic about the way he lived his life, and his passing is easier to accept because of it. He lived decisively, and if he left any jobs undone or any opportunities unexplored, they were small ones.
Frank Jeter was a young man at 64, and he was unusually tolerant of his associates half his age. He often asked for their opinions, and he listened patiently to the unsolicited ones. Sometimes he acted on the basis of them. The most difficult thing about working for him was the freedom he granted you; with it went responsibility. He considered not job too difficult for his staff. If he had a hard and fast rule around the office, it was embodied in his stock answer to all of us who occasionally complained about the burden of an “extra” job:
“We don’t try to find out how to get out of doing extra work; we try to find ways of doing it.” Frank Jeter could get away with that advice gracefully. He lived by it.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Farm News from Across North Carolina, September 1954

“Personal Mention” by Frank Jeter, Extension Editor, N.C. State College, Raleigh, as published in the September, 1954, issue of Extension Farm-News

It’s not unusual for rural people to assume responsibility when their farm income is endangered. It is unusual, however, when they agree by a 9 to 1 vote to pay for needed research and educational work beyond the reach of ordinary state appropriations.

North Carolina farmers did that three years ago and helped to provide additional funds for 38 different, new and additional projects administered under the direction of their State College of Agriculture, its Experiment Station and Extension Service. It was a vote of confidence. Nor has that confidence been abused.

Dean D.W. Colvard* tells with pride how the extra money, allocated by the Board of the Agricultural Foundation, has been used over the past three years. Director Ralph Cummings asserts that the money received by the Experiment Station has financed badly needed research, and Director David Weaver* says he has been able to supply needed services demanded by the people.

The money they used came from the donation or the gift of a lone 5 cents per ton on fertilizer and feed sold in the state. The 5 cents has returned its value manifold times in dollars. So again, the Agricultural Foundation and its Board of Directors go back to the people for a continuation of this authorization on October 15. That’s the date of the vote. That’s the date when each individual connected in any way with the upbuilding and ongoing progress of North Carolina’s rural life is expected to vote.

This modest magazine believes the people will give a resounding majority to another three years of hearty support to the idea. It’s a place where North Carolina leads the nation. It’s a place where the farm people and their educational institutions work together for the common good. It’s of value to everyone, of harm to none.

So, each person who feeds a chicken, a hog, a cow or a lam, or who uses a package of plant food for bigger yields per row, per plot, per field or per farm has the privilege of voting and the privilege of sharing in the forward march of North Carolina’s rural life.

We start another new thing this late summer also. That’s the farm-unit form of extension work. No one likes that designation, so suggest a better one. Anyway, North Carolina is starting the new kind of Extension in 14 counties. It will work with the whole farm family, and encompass the entire farm, not a project of a beautified room, or controlling nematodes in a tobacco field, or even adding a bunch of aristocratic dairy cows. It’s all that and more. It’s whatever may be decided upon by the farmer and his family for the better economic structure of the whole farm, after studying the situation and taking steps to improve it. So, give it a name. We named Nickels for Know-How. You name this one.

Director Weaver has been honored by Secretary Benson as consultant with a group of outstanding national leaders to advise on “resource conservation problems.” He attends the first meeting of the group in Washington, September 29-30.

The new animal diseases research and diagnostic laboratory is now open for business and Dr. J.c. Osborne, head of the veterinary section in the Department of Animal Husbandry, invites your specimens and cooperation. The new laboratory is on the Western Outlet, or perhaps we should say on Dean Schaub’s Boulevard. It is conducted in cooperation with Commissioner Ballentine’s Veterinary Department. By the way, we wish every state were fortunate enough to have a Commissioner of Agriculture like that fellow. But they don’t. He’s one in 48.**

Our new television studio is out there too. Visit both at your first opportunity.

W.A. Stephen, the beeman, and his up-coming state Association held a successful meeting at Western Carolina College at Cullowhee. They awarded life memberships to F.R. Jordan of Wilmington, J.W. Dickson of Brevard, and G.D. Ratley of Red Springs. Mr. Jordan, now 81, is “Dean of Beekeepers” in the state and even now works with his sons in handling over 1,000 colonies.

Did you know there is an average of 20 persons in the usual African family? Neither did we until Julie Eweka of Nigeria began to visit over North Carolina this summer to study our kind of farming. Julie says whenever a child married in Nigeria, the old folks add another room to the family home. That’s the way it’s done at his home, and he says it works. Maybe so, maybe so. But it wouldn’t work here, despite Mrs. Corrine Grimsley’s teaching about one big happy family.

Paul Sanders said the 17 farm magazine editors brought to the campus on August 19 by the Paul Truitt’s American Plant Food Council decided that the North Carolina visit was perhaps the highlight of their tour. He congratulated Ralph Cummings and Bill Colwell for the interesting and complete arrangements made.

Henderson apple growers also did a good job celebrating their eighth annual Apple Festival at Hendersonville on September 1. Dwight Bennett said the occasion had the solid backing of the newly organized Apple Growers Association. Among the luscious sampling of fruits on display was 30 beauty queen contestants from as many communities.

The last of the 100 North Carolina to be organized into a Soil Conservation District is Transylvania and Frank Doggett sighed with happiness as the State Soil Conservation Committee accepted the petition from that county.

The link from “Manteo to Murphy” has been made complete now that Billy Parker of the Slow Creek community in Cherokee County has found, and is taming, a gull-like bird which swallows a fish at a gulp. L.V. McMahan, assistant to the teller of tall tales, George Farley, reports this final linking and says the folks of Cherokee feel they are now one with the folks on the Outer Banks of Dare.

Speaking of swallowing fish, Virgil Holloway says 250 Madison County folks ate white perch fillets, hush puppies, cole slaw and hot potatoes for three hours the other evening at the Old Mill Wheel on Laurel River. It was the biggest fish fry every held in that part of the state.

Bill Chuber of Iredell tops that with a whopper of about 450 poultry growers consuming 675 pounds of barbecued chicken at the Iredell Fari Grounds, with appropriate string music all the while.

Tyrrell and Chowan Counties, each, held fired chicken dinners in August with sweet Sound-side watermelons as desert to celebrate something. All anyone in Eastern Carolina needs to throw a fish fry, an evening picnic or a barbecue in August, is just the suggestion. The ordinary North Carolina citizen will drive 65 miles to get a free plate of barbecue. That is, the kind of barbecue cooked in open pits between Raleigh and the Atlantic Ocean.

Those eastern Carolina folks want more milk also. Clarence Chappell Jr. of Belvidere is wiping out a blot on Perquimans County by establishing its first and only commercial dairy.

The special Tobacco Edition of the Washington News was dedicated to the farm women of Beaufort County.

Word comes from Catawba, Surry, and countless other counties that their summer tours were happy and informative occasions.

Stuart Noblin of the State College History Department has written a 25-year history of the State Grange to help celebrate the Silver Anniversary of this valuable farm organization on September 27.

Joe Powell tells the story of how R.L. Corbett of Macclesfield is growing 400 goslings. Here again is proved the versatility of Ladino clover. The growing geese spent the summer on the Ladino pasture.

Dry weather not only hurts crops and farmers but it hurts the fishing business. Earl Wade of Williston, Carteret County, says the season has been tough on professional shrimpers and fishermen of his section because “too many people are trying to make a living fishing.” “Miss Hattie” reports 2,277 clippings recovered in July with 4-H leading the recoveries clipped.

Finally, our manners to Craven, Davidson, Moore and Hertford counties for the well-plaqnned county booklets telling of their united agricultural programs.


*D.W. Colvard was Dean of Agriculture at N.C. State College in Raleigh, and David S. Weaver was director of the North Carolina Agricultural Extension Service.

**Our Commissioner of Agriculture was 1 in 48 because there were only 48 states in the union in 1954. Hawaii and Alaska hadn’t achieved statehood at that point.


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Veterans Take Advantage of Farmer Training Program, 1946

By Gerald B. James, as published in The N.C. State Agriculturist, Oct. 1946

Another mile post has been reached in the progress of vocational agriculture education in North Carolina in the Veteran’s Training Program sponsored by the State Board for Vocational Education and local school administrative units in cooperation with the Veterans Administration.

According to A.L. Teachey, State Supervisor of the Veterans Farmer Training Program, State Board for Vocational Education, more than 4,500 former members of our fighting forces have already availed themselves of the opportunity of this training which has as its aim the establishment of young men in farming and the improvement of their proficiency in this occupation.

Public Law 346, the G.I. Bkill of rights, and Public Law 16 will provide opportunity for veterans to receive such training through the Departments of Vocational Agriculture in rural high schools.

The large number of veterans taking advantage of the opportunity are a highly heterogeneous group in that some are married and others are single; some are land owners and others are renters. In that their interest all lie together, however, they are very much alike.

These veterans are those who want, through the G.I. Bill, to learn the more technical aspects, as well as the general practices of farming. Not only does the veteran get general and technical training as he farms, but he also receives a subsistence allowance of $65 per month if single, and $90 per month of married.

Training on the farm is of two general types: Self-proprietorship and employer-training. A veteran who lacks the experience and skill to do adequately the usual and ordinary farm work or who for other reasons is not ready to start farming for himself, may take training on a farm under the employer-training program. That is, provided he has prospects of becoming a manager or farm owner or renter upon completion of his training. The veteran under the employer-trainer program is trained to do the usual and ordinary farm work under direction and guidance. He also receives from the vocational agriculture teacher (or his assistants) a minimum of 200 hours per year of organized instruction in related subject matter in the classroom, laboratory, shop, or other facilities at the department of vocational agriculture or other satisfactory location.

The teacher also visits the trainee and employer-trainer on the farm at regular intervals fore a minimum of 100 hours per year and not less than one visit per month for the purpose of coordinating the related instruction and its application.

In the case of the self-proprietorship training program, the veteran may be placed on a farm under self-proprietorship if he is operating a farm as owner or renter or other agreement which fully protects the welfare of the veteran. The program is based upon a complete operating farm and home plan, including financial statement, budget of income and expenses, schedule of production and disposal of crops, livestock products, inventory of livestock, equipment and supplies of statement of the family living furnished by the farm. Close supervision similar to that in the employer-trainer program is carried out by the vocational agriculture teacher.


Veterans taking advantage of the Farm Training Program are rapidly increasing. There are, for example 16 veterans enrolled … in Lillington High School, Harnett County, under the supervision of John H. Blackman, teacher of vocational agriculture…. Of the present 16 enrolled, 13 are married, 12 are former vocational agriculture students, three have one or more children, six are over 25 years of age, four are farm owners and five plan to purchase farms within the next two years.

The White Oak School, Bladen County, has 31 veterans enrolled under the supervision and leadership of W.H. Hurdle, vocational teacher, and his two assistants, G.S. Council and J.S. Melvin. These 31 veterans are operating a total of 4,067 acres, of which 1,768 acres are in cultivation. Sixteen of the 31 are farm owners; five are renters with long-term agreements. This spring, they seeded 67 acres in hybrid corn and set 180,000 certified Louisiana Strain Porto Rico potato plants; 160 bushels of certified breeder oats and 62 bushels of certified wheat have been ordered for fall seeding.  They have planned to purchase 3,000 peanut bags cooperatively for the peanut crop…. They have also reserved one row of floor space twice each week for the sale of veterans’ tobacco (called Veterans Row) at a local warehouse. The 31 veterans will sell approximately 120,000 pounds of tobacco by the end of the marketing season. A veterans cooperative was formed for the purpose of buying and selling cooperatively.