Thursday, November 30, 2017

Damaged Peanuts Great When Added to Hog Feed, 1917

From the Nov. 21, 1917 issue of the Hickory Daily Record
Waste, or Damaged Peanuts, Is Valuable as Hog Feed
By Dana T. Gray, Chief, Animal Industry Division, West Raleigh, N.C.
A fall seldom passes without bringing with it some rainy weather just when peanuts are in shock and in condition to be dragged. Some years the loss of peanuts is exceedingly heavy. Other years it is almost nothing. When farmers do suffer losses of this kind it is well to know that damaged peanuts are valuable for hogs and that they may be substituted for the vast amounts of corn and other concentrates.
In fact, damaged peanuts are so valuable that they should be thought of as being in a class with wheat shorts, wheat bran, peanut meal, and soybean meal rather than as damaged goods. It may not be so this year, but it has often happened that damaged peanuts realized more as a result of being fed to hogs than they would have brought had they remained sowed and been sold as marketable nuts.
This test was made upon the Edgecombe Branch Station Farm right in the center of the peanut-growing section. One lot of pigs was placed in a small pen and given a ration made up of two-thirds corn plus one-third wheat shorts. A second lot of similar pigs was fed the same amount of corn but damaged peanuts were substituted for the wheat shorts. The pigs in the first lot, where corn and shorts were fed, gained, during the whole feeding period of 149 days, 0.7 of a pound daily, while those in the lot where damaged peanuts were substituted for the wheat shorts gained 0.8 of a pound daily. The peanuts proved to be superior, too, to the wheat shorts in economy of gains. When shorts were emplo9yed 7.3 bushels of corn plus 204 pounds of shorts were required to produce 100 pounds on increase in weight. When damaged peanuts were fed, only 5 bushels of corn plus 141 pounds of peanuts were required to produce an equal increase in weight. Pound for pound, the damaged peanuts proved to be far superior to wheat shorts.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Will North Carolina Troops Be Home From Mexico In Time for Christmas? 1916

“N.C. Troops May Return Home Soon,” from The Commonwealth, Scotland Neck, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 28, 1916

General Belief that Brigade Will Be Back in State for Christmas…Anxious to Leave Border…News Is Circulating in Camp that Boys Will Be On Way Home By December 15…No Provision for Winter and Getting Cold

Camp Stewart, El Paso, Texas—For some reason or reasons unknown the boys have got it into their heads of late that they are going home soon. You hear it everywhere and the officers are talking it just as strongly as the enlisted men. Several efforts have been made to run down the rumors but none get very close to high authority. They were telling that an officer of the Second Regiment got it directly from an officer of the Third, who, in turn, got it straight from one of Major General Clement’s aides that lumber for entraining the North Carolina troops have been ordered and that we would be on our way home not later than December 15. Countless other stores are in circulation but there is nothing definite on which to build a hope. This much, however, is true: No move has been made toward preparing the Tar Heel troops to withstand the rigors of the winter that is upon them. Their tents are not floored or walled. The Second and Third regiments still lack stoves and nothing looks like going into winter quarters except the new bath houses with their hot water tanks.

If something is not done for the North Carolina outfit soon there is going to be real suffering. Monday night the thermometer dropped to a scant 17 degrees above zero and the cold was so intense that hundreds of men never slept during the night. Conditions such as these will case dissatisfaction and there will be trouble. If there were need for the suffering the men would bear it cheerfully, for they have an abundance of Tar Heel grit but if Uncle Sam wants them to stay here and watch the border through the bleak months that are coming they would appreciate a few of the comforts of life while they are doing it.

The Second regiment underwent another rigid inspection at the hands of General Young preparatory to a second inspection by the division commander. General Young was greatly pleased with the improvement shown and expects the Second to redeem itself handsomely.

The boys on the border are soon to see the new army tractor trucks of the caterpillar type made famous recently in the attacks on the German front. They were introduced by the British over there and for want of a better name called “tanks.” They are tremendous steel structures mounted on tractors of 75 horsepower. These tractors lay their own track as they go along and nothing short of a mountain cliff seems to be able to stop them. They go straight across ordinary trenches and never even hesitate. Barbed wire entanglements mean nothing to these fighting monster and trees and houses are torn down if they get in the way.

These tractors are expected to prove very useful in this trackless country because they do not need roads. Their average speed is four miles an hour and they make that without roads just as well as with them. Each tractor will haul four trailers, each trailer will have a carrying capacity of 30,000 pounds, or as much as the average freight car. One of these monsters, armored sufficient to withstand small arm fire and immune to all sorts of attacks short of heavy artillery, can carry a sufficient force to protect the train and more than 100,000 pounds of cargo. One of them will do as much as 30 trucks of the ton-and-a-half type now in use in the army.

Leave of absence for 15 days was grated to Lieut. B.J. Durham, dental corps, third regiment. He left last Friday for his home at Asheville.

The North Carolina calvary left with the remainder of the provisional calvary regiment of the Tenth Division for a 15-day hike. They carry only such equipment as the regulations provide for war strength regiments. The hike is for the purpose of finding out if the equipment and rations provided by the regulations are sufficient for 15 days. The weather continues cold, but the Tar Heel calvarymen left in best of spirits.

Extremely cold weather continues. Every effort is being made to secure additional equipment needed for the men and flooring for tents.

Tar Heel troops are in confinement for arrests during the month of October. The First Regiment will be confined six days, the Second eight and the Third four. The Third is very proud of its record for the month of October. It appears now that none of the regiments will be confined to camp next month as there have been very few arrests in November. The boys learned the first month that they could not drink El Paso dry and have been doing much better. Corporal Frederick Fagg Malloy, Troop B Calvary, leaves for his home in Asheville on 30 days furlough.

Uncle Sam is a very fine old gentleman to be associated with in any sort of undertaking, but there is no denying the fact that he could improve on his business methods. For example, the North Carolina Brigade has three perfectly good dental surgeons—Lieut. B.F. Hall of Asheville, assigned to the First Regiment; Lieut. Adolphus E. Worsham of Spencer, assigned to the Second; and Lieut. B.J. Durham of Ashville, assigned to the Third. They have been in the service since early in the summer and drawing their pay--$2,000 per year each. Up to the present writing they have not done any work at all and the fault is not with them. They have not been furnished dental equipment and for four months enlisted men have been suffering for lack of attention. They put in requisition for equipment in July but they have not yet received it and there is no indication that they will receive it any time soon.

A.K. Bishop of Mount Gilead, N.C., is here with his camera taking pictures of the North Carolina boys and occasionally “mugging” a Pennsylvanian. He was with Mrs. Byron Wooten at Camp Glenn last summer and did practically all of her finishing Mrs. Wooten is the official photographer of the brigade and she is one of the most tireless workers in the world. She had planned to come to Texas with the troops but she was about worked down when moving orders came. Something of the volume of her work at camp last summer maybe realized from the statement made recently by Mr. Bishop that he finished for her 75,000 prints last summer. Mr. Bishop has found plenty of work to do so far and is much pleased with El Paso.

The Second Regiment was inspected by Major General Clement, division commander. The regiment passed a fine inspection and was highly complimented by the General.

Sixteen recruits from Fort Oglethorpe, Ga., arrived here. Eight were assigned to the First Regiment, giving that regiment even 1,000 enlisted men; four to Engineers; one to Troop B, Calvary; one to the Third Regiment and one to the Second.

The Third Regiment tendered Colonel and Mrs. S.W. Minor a review by way of celebrating at officers’ mess of the Third. The whole affair was a big surprise to Colonel and Mrs. Minor and was planned by Capt. Don Scott and other officers of the Third.

Orders have been issued for the two North Carolina calvary troops to go on border patrol duty December first.

A bunch of likely recruits, 24 in number, came in and were brought out to camp. They had been assembled at Fort Ogelthorpe, Ga., and there outfitted and given some training. They were allowed to choose the branch of service they wanted to enter, but except to companies nearest their home stations. They had been at Fort Oglethorpe for varying periods, some having been there a month, while others had only recently been sent there. Their names and home towns are:

John R. Edwards, Goldsboro; Frank A. Williams, Wilson; Davis Carter, Old Fort; Roland Hayes, Lakeview, S.C.; Perry R. Gardner, Dunn; West Presnell, Marion; Lane Price, Marion; Claude Oates, Charlotte; Garland Smotherly, Raleigh; Coy Sanders, Rockingham; Gales Blackwood, Raleigh; William Bell, Marion; George C. Davis, High Point; Percy Ferris, Greensboro; Robert Jones, Hickory; Gad Nelson, Hayesville; John A. Roberts, Concord; Charles F. Lane, Winston-Salem; Boss Cothran, Hayesville; Sam D. Whitaker, Kannapolis; Hiram Hanvey, Birmingham, Ala.; Ralph M. Dowd, Dunn; James W. Lovin, Rockingham; William A. Hanley, Belmont.

The first regimental football team played the strong team of the Eighth field artillery to a nothing to nothing standstill here this afternoon. The Tar Heels lacked team work and made frequent costly fumbles, but their line work was so good thqat the regulars never made a first down. The features of the game were two 35-yard runs by Bob Young and good all-round work of Fullback Britt.
D.C. Culbreth of Thomasville, member of Company L, Third regiment, was operated on at the base hospital for appendicitis. He stood the operation well and will recover.

Capt. Frederick Rutledge, troop B, North Carolina cavalry, was the victim of a sneak thief. Someone entered his tent and stole his government automatic pistol, another pistol equally valuable, a pair of leggings and a safety razor, the whole being valued at $58.

First Lieutenant Hinson of troop A, with a detachment of 16 men, a pack train of 20 mules and full field equipment has been sent on a seven-day hike to Las Cruces, N.M. His mission is to recover the horses lost by the Massachusetts outfit on their recent hike to Las Cruces.

Monday, November 27, 2017

American Troops Battle Mud in France As They Fight Enemy Soldiers, 1917

“American Troops Are Battling in the Mud,” from the Nov. 1, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler. The Hustler, Henderson County’s Leading Newspaper. Price Five Cents.

They Are Constantly Under Fire and Constantly Have Their Guns on the Enemy

With the American Army in France Monday, October 29—(By the Associated Press)—The first Americans to establish contact with the Germans today are battling in the mud of eastern France. They constantly are under fire and constantly have their guns on the enemy.

American shells have been hurled into German territory and they have exploded near the enemy line.
On a hill to the right of the explosions cataracts of mud are to be seen. On one side an American officer is looking on the scene through his field glasses. He is trying to see what damage has been done by the artillery to the enemy and his barbed wire entanglements.

Closer to the enemy in the first line of trenches is the infantry with the shells of both American and German guns whizzing over their heads. The men are rubber-booted and ponchoed. Rain, mixed with snow, pelts their helmets. No clothing, however, is able to withstand the wind-driven drops of rain and snow, but gunners and infantrymen, although they were wet, are satisfied, feeling that the honor of having been the first Americans in action is more than sufficient recompense for their discomfort.

The correspondent raced the American position after a long motor ride through shell-battered towns. Leaving the motor in one of the towns, he walked the rest of the way. Motor cars attract the eye of the Germans and they are likely to drop a half dozen shells in the direction that any machine is seen. The first American has been almost walked upon before it was discovered. It was so well hidden under trees and with foliage about it on a low-wire netting. Under the net, water dropped steadily. Some of the gunners were digging another pit in the mud along side their hidden gun.

Through the foliage in every direction, the ground in undulating. At that moment there was a flash of flame. It was the crack of a .75 gun and following it closely came the noise of the shell rushing through the air, becoming fainter and fainter as the projectile went on its way to the German position over the crest of a hill farther along. The mud digging artillerists continued their work without even looking up.

A lieutenant from Georgia emerged. He was the officer who directed the first shot. He led the way down the slippery, muddy hill to a dug-out covered with sandbags and logs. There was met a lieutenant from Indiana of the same battery who directed the first 18 shots of the war against Germany from an observation point.

On the other side of the hill was found the first gun fired. The muddy gunners were hard at work cleaning their guns.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Red Cross Christmas Seals to Raise Money to Treat Tuberculosis in North Carolina, 1917

“North Carolina’s Part in Seal Sale is $40,000, Treble Sales of Last Year,” from the Nov. 7, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler

To sell three times as many Red Cross Christmas seals this year as last year is the plan of the American Red Cross and the National Tuberculosis Association in their efforts to meet the increased demands that will be made upon them as anti-tuberculosis agencies. It is estimated from the experience of France and other warring nations that war more than trebles the amount of tuberculosis unless adequate provision have been made against it. It is this precaution and measures of prevention that these agencies are endeavoring to take.

Three million dollars is the amount expected from the sale of seals this year. This requires that every agency work to make results three times as large as those last year. North Carolina will be expected to raise near $40,000 as her proportionate part. Last year the value of the seals was $12,063. The year before it was $8,033.

In the Red Cross Seal campaign this year the mail sale plan will be largely adopted. The three-cent postage rate will not seriously affect the plan as first-class letters mailed for local delivery within the territory of the post office where they are mailed will be delivered by city and rural carriers for two-cent postage. Arrangement can be made to send letters in bulk to local representatives of various post offices to be mailed. The plan may require more agents working in the fight against tuberculosis but so much greater will be the returns in interest as well as in the amount of money raised.

All Red Cross Seal agents and those interested are requested to formulate plans for the greatest sale they have ever made.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Millions Petition Post Office For One Cent Letter Postage, 1916

From The Commonwealth, Scotland Neck, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 28, 1916

One Cent Postage Is a Possibility Soon…Next Congress Will Be Asked to Give Relief at Next Term of Congress…Committee’s Favorable Report

Washington, D.C., Nov. 27—The ways are now being greased for the launching of a movement for the readjustment of postage rates in the next session of Congress. This problem was to have been taken up on the last session but had to be deferred on account of the consideration required by railway mail pay. Since this has been disposed of the committees are prepared to take up the matter of placing the various postal rates on a more equitable basis.

A zone system of rates for second class matter is being prominently urged to take the place of the present flat rate which was adopted nearly 40 years ago. The present rate has for some time been regarded as a discrimination against the newspapers in favor of the great national magazines. Like the parcel post the proposed zone rates would be based on the length of the haul.

The postal committees have been besieged by petitions bearing millions of names and several hundred thousands letters from individuals urging a readjustment of postal rates with the view of making possible one cent letter postage. A survey of the situation indicates that sufficient changes will be made in the various rates to permit the granting of a one cent rate on local delivery letters in the next session of Congress.

R.S. Curtis Calls on North Carolina Farmers to Expand Sheep Herds, 1917

From the Nov. 20, 1917 issue of the Hickory Daily Record.
Every Stockman Should Save Ewe Lambs
By R.S. Curtis, Animal Husbandman, Animal Industry Division, West Raleigh
There has doubtless been a time in the history of the world when the sheep industry of the United States was in such a deplorable condition, and never a time when the production of wool and mutton were as important. There is today a world shortage of 53,000,000 sheep, and this condition has arisen during one of the most critical stages in the history of this country. Before the declaration of war there was a material shortage in meat products and the emergency which has arisen makes the condition the more critical.
We will not only need all of the meat products which can be produced from lamb and mutton, but the needs of the government in supplying the soldiers with clothing is going to make unusual inroads into the supply of wool at hand. Wool at the present time is selling as high as 80 cents per pound in the grease, and the chances are favorable that it will go still higher. Under present conditions this means that the wool clip form an average breed sheep is worth around $5. There is no other farm animal which produces such a by-product and still leaves the animal for reproductive purposes to replenish the breeding stock.
The census taken of livestock in North Carolina in 1900 showed that we had 300,000 sheep, and the census taken in 1910 showed a sheep population of only 200,000 or a decrease of 33 1/3 per cent. Such a condition is critical, as it not only means that we are helping to deplete the supply of meat and wool, but we are taking from the farms an animal which, when properly handled, will return the largest percentage on the money invested of any farm animal.
The slogan of every stockman should be to save the ewe lambs suitable for breeding purposes. It is a crime to allow them to go to the shambles. This is so fully realized that prominent livestock and kindred organizations are making every effort possible to divert the female breeding stock to the farms. For example, the Philadelphia Wool and Textile Association is transporting large numbers of western sheep into the east for the purpose of re-establishing the sheep industry on the eastern farms, where at one time this industry flourished.
If one-half of the farms in North Carolina maintained 20 head of breeding sheep this would mean a sheep population of four million head, or approximately 12 times the number which we now have. It is a conservative estimate to state that there is sufficient waste land on half of the farms of this State to carry this number of sheep. The amount of feed which it would require to keep this number of sheep would scarcely be appreciable. On the Iredell test farm in this State 20 head of sheep have been maintained for several years. The wool from these 20 breeding ewes has just been sold for $5.00 per head, which is more than sufficient to pay for the cost of keep, leaving the lambs clear profit.
When the good pasture is available the wool will pay for the cost of that (something is missing). Permanent pastures can not be provided in all sections of the states. That is not an obstacle to sheep production since temporary pastures are very much better and there is no section of the State where such cannot be grown. The chief reason for using temporary pastures is to retard the development of stomach worms which is one of the two chief troubles in lamb production.
The other obstacle, or at least what is commonly supposed to be an obstacle, is the dog. This can be controlled by the use of corrals where sheep are kept at night. ‘There is really more in the fear of the dog than the actual damage which is sustained. The writer is interested in the opinion that if farmers interested in sheep wait until adequate dog laws are passed that the sheep industry will lag hopelessly. Before a dog law can be passed it will be necessary to have a large number of interested stockmen bring pressure to bear on their legislators. If an attempt is made to pass a dog law there is really no argument at the present time, since there are not enough sheep owned by a sufficiently large number of stockmen to back up the issue. Even though we had a law at the present time sheep should be corralled at night, since there will always be some dogs which may prey on the unprotected flock. Conservation of the breeding animals is the one point which needs prompt attention, and the dog and intestinal worm problems should not stand out as barriers when an industry is facing extinction.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Order Thanksgiving Oysters, Plum Pudding At Once, 1917

Advertisement in the Nov. 20, 1917 issue of the Hickory Daily Record

For Oysters should be placed at once
Mince Meat, Plum pudding,
Cranberries, Celery, Stone’s
Rich Fruit Cake. Ask people
who have tried it. We have
a special price.

Whitener and Martin
“Sell for Less Profit”

Monday, November 20, 2017

At 70 Years Old Dr. Few Gives Up Farming, 1917

“Dr. C. Few Has Done His Last Farming,” from the Nov. 7, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler

Rents 50-Acre Farm to B.C. Marlow of McDowell County, Who Will Move Family at Early Date

“I did my last farming today, was the definite statement of Dr. C. Few last Friday night.

The venerable doctor, who will be 70 years old next February, has decided to quit worrying with farm troubles and will make himself contented at his Henderson home thereafter. He has rented his farm near Hendersonville to B.C. Marlow of McDowell County.

Mr. Marlow will soon move his family to the farm. He comes with the reputation of being a farmer of progressive ideals. He has spent some time on the farm this fall sowing grain. The farm contains about 50 acres of land under cultivation.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Upcoming Thanksgiving Services, Local News of Scotland Neck, 1916

“Thanksgiving Services and Local News,” from The Commonwealth, Scotland Neck, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 28, 1916

The Methodist Episcopal Church will hold their Thanksgiving service Thursday night.

Rev. L.T. Singleton of the Methodist Episcopal church will hold thanksgiving service at Hobgood on Wednesday evening.

The Protestant Episcopal Church will have a Thanksgiving service at 11 o‘clock Thursday morning, the offering to be for the benefit of the Thompson Orphanage.

There will be a Thanksgiving service at the Baptist Church on Thursday morning, the collection to be devoted to the Thomasville Orphanage.

Mr. J.C. Riddick left yesterday morning for Henderson.

Mr. Ashby Dunn left on yesterday morning’s train to attend court at Halifax.

The November Superior Court was opened in Halifax yesterday for jury trial causes. Several jurymen were drawn from this town.

Mr. A. Paul Kitchin left on yesterday morning’s train for Halifax to be present at the opening of the November term of the Superior court.

Mr. C.W. Albertson, Charles Stacia, Jeff Ray, J.R. Staton and R.L. Hardy were drawn for Jury service and left on yesterday morning’s train for Halifax.

Mrs. Annie Medford of Tillery, who has been visiting Mrs. Lucile Whitfield and Mrs. Callie Stroud, left for home on the morning train.

Mrs. B.F. Harrell of Spring Hill, who has been visiting her mother, Mrs. R.C. Bradshaw, returned home on the morning train.

Mr. N.B. Josey left for Dunn yesterday morning, and from that point will take in some other places on business, returning to town for Thanksgiving.

Mrs. J.M. Leggett returned from a visit to Wilson yesterday morning.

Mrs. Knight returning from a visit to Tarboro, came in on the morning train.

Miss Lucille Leggett arrived on the morning train yesterday from Franklinton.

Mrs. Peyton Keel is reported as a little better, according to the physicians in charge of her case. A thorough examination will be made either today or tomorrow, and Mr. Keel left on last night’s train to be with his wife during the examination.

Mr. Tom Anderson of Whitakers came into town the end of last week and drove home in a new Saxon six.

Mrs. Carl Lawrence, formerly Miss Bessie Hancock of Murfreesboro, arrived in town the week end to be present at the Hancock-Marsden wedding.

Mr. G.C. Weeks returned the weekend from Greenville, bring back with him a Willys-Knight roadster which he had sold to Mr. Tom Johnson. This is a new car for this neighborhood and created no little interest on the streets.

Mr. and Mrs. W.T. Hancock, Miss Annie Wilkinson and Mr. and Mrs. Tadlock motored over to Halifax Sunday to spend the day.

Mrs. R.W. Cherry and children whose home is near Tarboro has been spending a few days with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. B.I. Allsbrook.

Mrs. H.E. Kennedy of Kelford is visiting her sister, Mrs. D.E. Henderson.

Mr. and Mrs. L.A. Parks, Mrs. Paul Johnson and Mrs. J.E. Parks of Tillery were visitors here Friday.

There will be a reception to the bridal party tonight at the home of Mrs. Will Hancock.

Mr. W.R. Strickland of Benson, N.C., has joined the staff of The Commonwealth.

Mr. W.A. McMurray, county demonstration agent, left for Weldon last night on business.

Mr. Jesse Hancock, wife and daughter, Katherine, of Rocky Mount, arrived Saturday and will be here through the week, and attend the wedding of their niece, Miss Hilda Hancock, on Wednesday.

Mr. J.R. Allsbrook and daughter, Miss Brookie, and Miss Benson of Allsbrook, S.C., arrived Sunday evening in Mr. Allsbrook’s Chalmers to spend a few days with relatives.

Mrs. Ed Higgs of Greenville was here on a week end visit to her mother, Mrs. M.A. Shields.

Miss Helen Hilliard and Mrs. Roy Wooten motored to Greenville Sunday, visiting friends and returned in the evening.

Mrs. J.H. Hussey spent Sunday in Tarboro with friends.

Mr. Tyler Wheeler left on the early morning train Sunday for Richmond, Va., to see Mr. Jim Pittman.

Tuesday, December 19th is the date set for the production of Price and Bonnelli’s Greater New York Minstrels, which will appear at Madry’s Opera House. This aggregation of fun makers are having good houses all along the circuit.

The ladies of Trinity church will hold their annual bazaar Wednesday, December 6th, in the room formerly occupied by the Walston Barber Shop, in the brick hotel. The public is cordially invited to attend.

The Bishop of the diocese of the Protestant Episcopal Church, Right Rev. Joseph Cheshire, D.D., will visit the Church of the Advent, Enfield, on Tuesday evening, December 5th, at 7:30 o’clock at which time a class for confirmation will be presented. The following afternoon, December 6th, the Bishop will visit the Church at Ringwood.

Mr. Leland Kitchin accompanied by Mr. Smith, drove in Mr. Kitchin’s Hupmobile to Raleigh Sunday.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Sixteen-Year-Old Succumbs to Fever, 1917

“Henry Garren Dies,” from the Nov. 7, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler

Sixteen-Year-Old Son of Mr. and Mrs. P.P. Garren Succumbs to Fever

Henry Garren, the 16-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. P.P. Garren, died Monday afternoon at 5 o’clock after an illness with fever for several days.

Interment was made on Tuesday afternoon at Oakdale cemetery, following funeral ceremonies at the home with Rev. K.W. Cawthon officiating.

Henry had been employed by the Justus & Harty meat market for some time and they speak in highest terms of the many estimable qualities of the young man.

This was the first death in the family of several children, the names of his brothers and sisters following: Hicks Garren, Morris Garren, and Miss Marie Garren; Mrs. B.B. Jacson, Mrs. Charlie Cagel, Mrs. Walter Cagle and Mrs. Jack Gesser.

Ben Hill Farmer Pays Cash for New Car, 1917

“Negro Pays for Farm and Buys $2,185 Car,” from the Nov. 1, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler

Fitzgerald, Ga., Oct. 29—An agent for a high-priced automobile here was astonished when a Ben Hill County Negro farmer walked into his office Saturday, asked the price of a car, placed down $2,185 in new currency and drove off. The negro paid for his farm this year and is said to have seven thousand dollars on deposit in a local bank.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Scotland Neck Claims M.D. Allsbrook Is Oldest Voter in the State, 1916

From The Commonwealth, Scotland Neck, N.C., Friday, Nov. 24, 1916

Oldest Voter in North Carolina is Mr. M.D. Allsbrook

The News & Observer recently stated that the oldest voter in the State was a resident of Harnett county, who was 94 years old and had always voted the democratic ticket.

Scotland Neck can go our contemporary one better, for we have with us Mr. M.D. Allsbrook, who is 96 years old, has voted for 75 years, and has never scratched the democratic ticket.

Mr. Allsbrook’s oldest son is 75 years of age, his next 72 years of age, and the two others, the youngest being over 65 years, all of them good and consistent democrats.

Three of these sons, together with their father, served through the Civil War in the confederate army, representing their township and state with distinction.

This we believe is the record, and certainly carries the palm from the News and Observer’s Harnett county man.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Unloading Tobacco for Auction at Durham Tobacco Warehouse, 1939

Unloading tobacco from a trailer the night before an auction at a tobacco warehouse in Durham, November, 1939

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

North Carolina Restaurants Observing Meatless, Wheatless Days, 1917

“Restaurants Observe Meatless, Wheatless Days,” from the Nov. 1, 1917 issue of The French Broad Hustler.

Raleigh, N.C., Oct. 29—Meatless Day and Wheatless Day will be inaugurated by hotels and restaurants of North Carolina October 30th and 31st, Tuesday being observed as Meatless Day and Wednesday as Wheatless Day.

Messers. D.H. Griffin of Raleigh and A.H. Galloway of Winton-Salem, the committee of hotel men co-operating with the Food Administration in this matter, are requesting every hotel and cafĂ© in the State to align itself with the Food Administration and observe the days mentioned. “Meatless” refers to beef and pork and their products. In lieu of these products the hotels and cafes are urged to use fish, poultry, game and vegetables. In lieu of white wheat flour they are urged to use bread, hot cakes, waffles, muffins and other forms of bread made from corn, rye, graham and other cereal products.

Messrs. Griffin and Galloway, who have intimate knowledge of the hotel situation in North Carolina, express confidence that Meatless and Wheatless days in North Carolina will be altogether successful. They say the hotel and restaurant men in the State appreciate the vital importance of the service they can render and will co-operate gladly.

State Food Administrator Henry A. Page recently addressed an appeal to every local council of the T.P.A. and U.C.T. in North Carolina, asking them to support the hotels in this departure and to use their influence in driving into line any hotels and cafes which do not fall in with the Food Administration’s program. The response to Mr. Page’s appeal have been such as to indicate that the eating houses will receive whole-hearted support from the representative traveling man of North Carolina and that those hotels and restaurants who do not “come across” will feel the weight of an adverse public sentiment.

Not only are the hotels being urged to conserve meat and wheat but they are being urgently requested to cut down the amount of fats and sugar they use, curtailing the quantity of pies, cakes, candies, etc., served. The hotels, on a larger scale, are being urged to do just what every family in the country is expected to do—help win the war with food.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Quick Thinking by G.C. Weeks Saves Hupmobile, 1916

“Auto Fire Saturday,” from The Commonwealth, Scotland Neck, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 28, 1916. I didn't have any idea what a 1916 Hupmobile looked like, so I Googled it. This image is from

Outside the Josey Hardware Company Saturday night, after having the tank of a Hupmobile Roadster filled with gasoline, the owner struck a match to light up, preparatory to taking the road again, when the overflow of gasoline on the car caught, and the total loss of the car seemed imminent.

Mr. G.C. Weeks dashed into the store and got a Pyrene extinguisher and with two squirts the blaze, which had lighted up Main street, was put out. But for the presence of mind of Mr. Weeks the car would have been a ruin, and the owner who was a stranger to this section, and his companion would have had to be content with railroad travel.

In a most cavalier manner the owner stood by while others worked on his car, but when the flame was quenched, he found that by the squirting of a few drops of Pyrene had saved his property he exclaimed, “Ah, that stuff is worth a thousand dollars a load.”

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Yadkin River Power Company Offers Classes on Homemaking, 1920

“House-Keeper’s Week…Nov. 11 to 13th at Yadkin River Power Company Office,” from the November 4, 1920, issue of the Rockingham Post-Dispatch

Thursday, Nov. 11th
Butter Making—Mr. J.A. Airy, Dairy Specialist, State College of Agriculture and Engineering, West Raleigh, N.C.

2:00 to 4:00 P.M.
Millinery—Mrs. Cornelia Morris, District Demonstration Agent, Henderson
Power & Water Demonstration—Lally Light Co., Ellerbe, N.C.

Friday, Nov. 12th

10:00 to 12:00 A.M.
Sewing with Electric Motor—Mrs. Mary Fletcher
Demonstration of Fireless Cooker—Mrs. Rosalind Redfern, Home Demonstration Agent, Anson County

2:00 to 4:00 P.M.
Decorative Cake-icing Using Oil Stove—Mrs. Rosalind Redfern, Home Demonstration Agent, Anson County
Millinery, Power & Water Demonstrations continued

Saturday, Nov. 13th

10:00 to 12:00 A.M.
The Family Laundry Using Hand Power and Electric Washing Machine and Demonstration of Electric Iron—Mrs. W.B. Covington

2:00 to 4:00 P.M.
General Exhibit of Finished Products and Labor-Saving Devices—Mrs. John Sandy Covington, Home Demonstration Agent.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

'Vetville' at N.C. State University Following WW II

After World War I veterans struggled as they returned to civilian life. Congress passed the Bonus Act of 1924 but stated that the bonus would not be paid until 1945. By 1932, frustrated veterans were really suffering during the Great Depression and 20,000 vets marched on the capitol in Washington, D.C. demanding their bonus money now. President Herbert Hoover called up the Army to break up the crowds. It was a mess.

To avoid similar problems at the end of World War II President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Congress passed the G.I. Bill. Veterans could continue their education in college or vocational school, and almost 49 percent of college admissions in 1947 were veterans. The bill also provided a weekly unemployment benefit for up to one year, and guaranteed loans for veterans who wanted to buy a home, business or farm. Medical care for veterans was also included, and new hospitals were established for veterans. By 1956, almost 10 million veterans had received some form of benefit from the G.I. Bill.

Many veterans attended N.C. State University in Raleigh after the war, and housing was a problem. These are pictures from what was informally referred to as “Vetville,” housing set up for veterans and their families. These photographs are from Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries. The woman working in the Vetville grocery co-op is identified as the wife of a veteran. 

Veterans Day

Friday, November 10, 2017

J.W. Graham Recalls His Life, History of the Sandhills, 1924

From the Friday, Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C.

Last week J.W. Graham of Aberdeen told his story before the Kiwanis Club at the dinner at the Carolina Hotel, and a more illuminating bit of biographical history has not in a long time come to the notice of the folks of middle North Carolina. In an unpretentious way Mr. Graham said that he had been born in the vicinity of what is now Aberdeen, but what was then an undeveloped and unpromising bit of back country in the heart of a great pine forest, and what was more discouraging, at a time when war was holding the nation in its ruinous influences. He came about the time Sherman’s army swept through this section although he was not one of them. But Sherman and war conditions left things in such shape that the youthful Graham was not swathed in silks or reared in luxury, for until he was grown life in the Sandhills was a struggle. War put some climaxes on what nature had done through her niggardliness in this vicinity, and while J.W. Graham never knew poverty he knew the next neighbor of it, which was the absolute necessity of depending on individual effort and of living close to the hard lines of simplicity. But that did not annoy the people much in that time, for they had a faith in themselves and in life that brought a degree of contentment that was worth more than money or abundance.

But along with the struggle to subsist, and to keep in touch with development, get to school, which in Graham’s case was a long effort, reaching finally his career at the university, his story of the realization and exhaustion of the resources of the Sandhills, and the continual discovery of something else equally as valuable. Following the turpentine, which was one of the early dependencies came timber, and after timber came the realization of the climate, and of dewberries and peaches and cotton and tobacco and all the time it was discovered that the limit of resources was never reached.

A sort of climax of the interesting biography and philosophical study of the Sandhills was the discovery that in the difficult time of reconstruction the  people came through, and that the father they came the more the road was smoothed out, and now when all should according to the ancient belief be absolutely exhausted of its resources the horizon has broadened to such an extent that people, resources, prospect and everything are on a basis that in Mr. Graham’s childhood would have been looked upon as impossible to the extent of absurdity if anybody had predicted what he now sees. 

After all the resources of any place, whether the barren Sandhills, or the Gardens of Utopia, depend on the people and as the people of the Sandhills have needed the developing resources of their community those resources have developed as others will continue to develop, for under and around and above us always are things we have never dreamed of and in the course of time those things are discovered and utilized.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Eleanor Roosevelt Quote's 'The Illusion of War' for Armistice Day, 1936

From Eleanor Roosevelt’s “My Day” column, published in various newspapers on November 11, 1936.
Tomorrow is Armistice Day and I have been sent a poem by Richard Galliene called: "The Illusion of War," which expresses well something we should all remember on this day and so I pass on to you the first verse:
I do abhor;
And yet how sweet
The sound along the marching street
Of drum and fife, and I forget
Broken old mothers, and the whole
Dark butchering without a soul."

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

'The Advice He Gave Me Worth More Than Lands, Money' Says Atlas Phillips' Son, 1924

Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C.

CAMERON—There was a large crowd at Union Church Sunday, who came to pay their last respects to Mr. Atlas Phillips on Route 2, who passed away Friday the 31st at the Charlotte Sanitarium. Mr. Phillips who was in his 73rd hear, had been in ill health for some time, and decided to go to the sanitarium for an operation. He was accompanied by two of his sons, J.A. and Charles Phillips. They left on Thursday and on reaching the sanitarium it was found that he had uremia and that that he had also developed pneumonia. He died the next day at 4:30 p.m. Mr. Phillips, the oldest son of John Phillips and Belle McIver Phillips, was born and reared in the community of Buffalo Church. His father died during the Civil War and to Atlas, a boy of ten, fell the responsibility of providing for his widowed mother and the younger children. He shouldered the burden and carried on. When he grew to manhood he married Miss Eliza Thompson of Cameron community. From this union were born eleven children, all living. They are: G.A. Phillips of Raeford; J.A. Phillips of Cameron; Mrs. Gillis of Fayetteville; W.F., D.M., H.F. and C.M. Phillips on Route 2; Mrs. Miller McDonald, Mrs. Addie Baxley, Mrs. Emma Frye, and Miss Alice Phillips on Route 2.

Mr. Phillips was an industrious man and paid his debts. He was a great reader and a thinker. He had read the Bible through several times. He was familiar with history and the works of Josephus. Life to him was not only a problem, but a mystery. He expressed his willingness to die, saying he had lived out his allotted time, and the rest was “labor and sorrow.” His children were devoted to him. Mr. J.A. Phillips of Cameron in conversation with the correspondent, said that on Sunday after he had laid his father away, he and his elder brother were walking over the little farm where they were born and reared; that he said: “Here he toiled and brought us up—eleven children! We were never hungry; we had the substantials of life. We were clothed, but the advice he gave me were worth more than lands and money.”

The funeral services were conducted by Rev. M.D. McNeill. The casket and case were of solid cypress. The grave was covered with lovely autumnal flowers, and beautiful designs.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Missie Tyler McLeod Dies At Her Home in Vass, 1924

Missie Tyler McLeod Dies, from the Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C.

Missie Tyler McLeod, a respected colored woman of Vass, passed away at her home Wednesday after a prolonged illness. She was the wife of John McLeod and daughter of “Uncle Ed” Tyler one of the old settlers of the community.

Life Magazine Cover Features Dinner Hats, November 1948

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Advice to Farmers as They Get Ready for Winter, 1917

“Advice to Farmers,” from the Nov. 1, 1917, issue of The French Broad Hustler. The Hustler, Henderson County’s Leading Newspaper.

Paint the house but don’t use loud colors or combinations of colors. If you can’t paint, you can whitewash!

Determine that no junk shall be left scattered about your farm this winter. Clean up as well as paint up.

Farm machinery is too high to leave out in the weather. If you haven’t a good tool shed, better build one before winter. As farm machines are stored, go over them carefully replacing broken parts and tightening nuts. Then give them a good coat of paint, grease the shares of plows and other parts liable to rust, and you will insure their being in tip-top shape next spring.

Old automobile tires may be cut up and used for half soles. They are a little hard to nail on, but when you get them securely in place, you may almost guarantee 5,000 miles of service from them!

A good way to protect exposed water pipes from the cold is to make a box about them with six-inch boards and pack the box well with cottonseed hulls.

It will pay the average farmer to buy a set of plumber’s tools when installing a heating system or waterworks, for having them on hand will save much trouble.

You may not be able to paint your house and put in lights and waterworks all at once, but you can do that which is needed most and follow with the other improvements as soon as possible. Well painted buildings more than almost anything else suggest to the public that the farm owner is a man of good business sense, judgment and prosperity.

While leather is so high, the almost lost art of tanning ought to be revived on many farms.

If the farmer had to wash and clean the old dirty kerosene lamps, he’d get rid of them mighty quick. It’s all right, however, for mother and the girls to do it!

For seed production in the central South, Mr. David R. Coker says sow Abruzzi rye about November 15. For grazing, October 15 is about the latest date, he said.

Try offering your tenants $5 apiece for each extra bale of cotton or extra 50 bushels of corn they produce next year as compared with this year.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

The Pilot salutes a master—Charlie Picquet, 1924

From the Editorial Page of the Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C., Stacy Brewer, Owner.

The close of the Sandhill Fair for this year brought out many a creditable word for Charlie Piquet, for more than ever the folks realize what this energetic and enthusiastic man is doing for his community. 

Picquet is the son of a Pennsylvania preacher and no doubt that is where he gets his missionary aggressiveness. He is likewise a might human sort of a creature, and that accounts for a lot of his cordiality toward everybody. He looks above the ground, for he is not a muckracker, and he sees the people when he is looking up. He likes to do something that will brighten conditions and arouse interest in things not altogether sordid. He likes to shove at his neighbors the clean and wholesome attractions of life, and he puts in a lot of work in doing it.

He is a singer and a leader, and he has interested the Sandhill country in singing, and in doing it he is awakening an agency that is worth attention. He is by instinct a showman, but a showman who wants his offerings to be a stimulus of character and of ambition. He is working in a field that is wholly new, and that has not been bothered by any one else in this section, and he is getting good results. 

Some day Charlie Picquet may drop out of the Sandhill Fair, and out of Sandhill life, and things may go on without him, as they do without any of us when we have finished the work. But it is a dead sure fat that by being in these things Charlie Picquet has hoed a grown man’s row, and hoes it right and clean, and completely. The Pilot salutes a master—Charlie Picquet.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Board of Health Doctor Criticized for Operating on Students Identified by State School Nurse, 1919

From the November, 1919, issue of The Health Bulletin, published by the North Carolina State Board of Health. 

As a rule we pay no attention to knocking, seldom ever read the lambastings we get, and never worry about it. But the following little extract from a letter received just before going to press is interesting enough to pass on:

“I want to tell you about a specialist in this State ‘knocking’ State work while operating on patients who were found and examined by the State School Nurse and who persuaded them to have the operation done. They paid $40 apiece, besides railroad fare, a little over 100 miles, hotel bills, etc.”

In the first place this specialist is lonesome, and in the second “there’s a reason” for his knocks, and the reason would be very interesting to all the general practitioners of medicine and most of the people in his section.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Don't Grow More Peaches Than Market Can Bear, 1924

“Derby Says Limit Peach Production” from the Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C.
Thinks Crop Should Be Held Down to What Market Takes Freely

I have just returned and read the article in the Sept. 5th issue of The Pilot entitled “Is the Orchard Overdone?” in which you take issue with me on the question of production of peaches.

There are several points that I would like to clear up in this connection and as I believe the whole matter deserves the widest possible discussion in the local press I am very glad to write this open letter to you which I hope you will see fit to publish. I want to discuss the matter in perfect good humor on account of you and the pleasant relations I have always had with you so that any little pleasantries that I pass out should be taken in good part. We once argued in the public press the question of whether or not you deserved to hung without a lynching taking place and as you escaped the gallows I expect my idea of a proper punishment for you was wrong. While we are discussing personalities I might say that in my opinion your vision and enthusiasm are and have been very valuable assets to this community and I am very glad that you were NOT hung. However it is possible for even a prophet and the Sage of the Sandhills to be sometimes wrong and when he is I want to assist in setting him right.

It seems to me that the responsibility of the press is a very great one and that when a writer undertakes to advise such a community as this on a fundamental economic policy he should be very sure of his facts. This is especially true when one is dealing with farmers, for as a class they have less cohesion than any other class in our civilization and the development of public opinion among them is an extremely difficult matter. Therefore I want to get down to the fats in this matter of production of peaches and stick to them, leaving generalities and sweeping prophesies as to the future alone.

In the first place you start your article by misquoting me. I never have made the assertion that the Sandhills are producing too many peaches. What I have said is that the South was producing too many peaches and that the present acreage planted in this district will produce all we can hope to market at a profit and that this acreage should not be increased. I took this position two years ago and still maintain it and I believe that the experience of last summer has proved my position to be correct. Of course it is not a popular stand to take. Being a Cassandra never went down very well in America but that happens to make no difference to me whatever. I would a good deal rather be right than insincere.

You go on in your article to say that the trouble is not with overproduction but with an imperfect system of marketing and you lead your reads to believe that in some way the community can improve this so that 50,000 cars of peaches can be sold as easily as we used to sell our 300 or 400 carloads. You compare our problem to the marketing of beef which you say is an equally perishable product as peaches.

This comparison seems to me to be unworthy of your intelligence and indicates that you are guessing about the question and not boring down after the cold hard facts. Beef is really not a particularly perishable product. It can be frozen and kept in cold storage indefinitely. It can be and is slaughtered whenever the occasion demands. If we could leave our peaches on the trees for twelve months and pick them when the market demanded them or pick them and store them under low temperatures for an indefinite period, then I would agree that our problem would be much simplified and would approach a comparison with the beef industry.

Moreover beef is a necessity in the diet of the nation that really has no substitute. Meat has a stimulating effect that most people believe is the source of energy and endurance of our very vigorous people. But for peaches there are dozens of substitutes, both fresh and preserved that can answer the same purpose equally as well. It is well known that cantaloupes are serious competitors of peaches and in this connection it might be well to point out that we peach growers were very fortunate during the market gluts of the past season in that the cantaloupe crop was short and poor. Otherwise we would have had an even more disastrous experience than we had.

You also lead your readers to believe that one solution of our problem would be to can our product. This is a very common illusion among people who really don’t know anything about the peach business. Our fresh fruit varieties such as Belle, Hiley and Elbertas are not suitable for canning. This is a well known fact which I am surprised that more people do not recognize. These varieties do not hold their shapes when put up n cans but break own into a frayed, mushy mass that is not acceptable to the public. I grant you that the flavor, when properly prepared, is superior to the ordinary hard meaty California canning peach but unfortunately the public will not accept them.

California when through this same experience years ago with the same varieties that we are growing here and finally developed a special peach for drying and canning. You wonder why we should not do the same. Well, that is worth looking into but first we should determine whether we can enter this special line of agriculture with any hope of success. Raising canning peaches is a very different matter than raising fresh fruit. Colour, which is an essential for fresh fruit is of no consequence in canned fruit. The important considerations are the size of the individual specimens and the yield per tree. In California in the peach canning districts they get a very much larger yield per tree than we do here on account of the stronger land, and, in my opinion this is the stumbling block that would prevent our hoping to compete with California in this line. At all events it would take years of experimentation and a great deal of special knowledge and investigation before we could enter the canning peach industry. I object to your sweeping and off hand assertion that to can our peaches is a solution of our difficulties.

Now as to marketing. You again make a sweeping assertion to the effect that we should do something to improve it so that more peaches can be sold at a profit and one would infer form what you say, that our present methods are very inefficient. In this I totally disagree.

It is utterly impossible for a district that has a product to market over a period of only three weeks in a year to build up an organization of its own to handle the business. This has been tried time and again by various districts and has always proved a failure. Our own experience in this line should have taught us the lesson in conclusive fashion. For such a district as ours the only solution is to employ a marketing organization that is constantly in the field and that has the connections and trained personnel to handle the job efficiently. This was done last year by the American Growers and the Federated Growers and done as well as it could be done. Contrary to what you would have your readers believe they put our product everywhere. Of course there were many people that did not get Sandhill peaches 1,500 carloads will not supply the whole country, but the consuming public had plenty of peaches during our shipping season as anyone could ascertain by simply looking at the fruit stands and push carts in the big centers of the country.

This is a well established fact that is recognized by everybody.

One would also infer from your article that something was wrong with the country’s system of getting fruit into the hands of the public after it reaches the big centers. If you walk down any if the busy streets of any good-sized American town the thing that impresses you is the multitude of fruit stands, for the most part run by Italians. You wonder how they all manage to make a living at it. This summer in Portland, Maine, I had fruit thrust at me on every corner. I don’t believe than any middleman is in closer touch with the consuming public than is the Italian fruit vendor. He sets up a stand in any nook or corner available, he puts his wares out in the open close to the passerby and he is always in attendance in his white coat urging the public to buy. Or he pushes his long cart through the crowded streets taking his wares to the very doorstep of the purchaser. In fact I don’t believe that any product has a more complete distributing system than fruit has in this country or more efficient and enterprising salesmen to dispose of it.

In seasons like the past one generally hears a wail raised by the growers against the middlemen and the railroads. These are easy people to blame for all the troubles of the business but I cannot see quite how the responsibility for raising more stuff than can be consumed is to be fixed on them. The middleman is vital to the success of the perishable fruit grower. Without him to take a share of the risk and to unload the stuff on the public we would be in a sorry plight indeed. Nor is the business all beer and skittles for him. The large number of failures in this line is proof enough that his end is quite risky, if not more risky, than the growers’ end.

LaFollette and his crew of radicals blame the railroads and Wall Street for the condition of the wheat market and the hard times of the Western farmer when every thinking man knows that what ails the wheat farmer is too much wheat and nothing much else.

We have never experienced an agricultural crisis in this country that was not directly caused by overproduction. The corn famine in Kansas in the nineties was due to an overproduction of corn. Then the farmers burnt their cornstalks for fuel as they were cheaper than wood or coal. The opening up of our fertile West during and after the Civil War virtually prostrated agriculture in the East and for that matter in Europe as well. Why? Simply because those rich lands yielded more and at less expense than the worn out soils of an older civilization and because the free homesteads upon which the settler had no interest on the investment to pay and no mortgage to clear was a more profitable investment than the capitalized farms of an older civilization.

The potentiality of this great country from the point of view of the production of all kinds of crops is still enormous. If it were all farmed intensively agriculture would be ruined. Make no mistake about that. Our government has fostered agriculture by encouraging the farmer to produce more and more, to make two blades of grass grow where one grew before, regardless of whether the second blade could be sold at a profit or sold at all. By giving away the homesteads to settle the West, by numerous reclamation projects, by teaching and preaching better and cheaper methods of production our government has assisted mightily in developing the greatest country on earth but it is only natural that such a program should bring its periods of suffering for the producing classes.

I am not blaming or criticizing the policy of the government in this. I am merely stating that I believe to be facts and attempting to point out the dangers that a community like ours may run into. Only by knowing the truth about the past can we safeguard the future.

The question, as I see it, is whether we in this section should not take stock and the possibility of marketing what we will produce on the present acreage planted and plan our future as intelligently as any large business concern plans its future.

No manufacturing concern goes ahead with a program of production without consulting its sales department to find out how much can be sold. Yet the peach grower goes blindly ahead planting trees without the dimmest idea of where or how his product is to be marketed four or five years later. True, you cannot control this by legislation or by any other direct method, but if the press has the welfare of the section it serves really at heart and is honest and candid and not serving the ends of real estate speculators or railroads that are pursuing a policy of too rapid development, it can present the facts to the public and the public can judge for itself.

Let us profit by the experience of the Georgia peach growers and the Washington and Oregon apple growers and the Florida citrus growers and the California lemon growers before it is too late and we smash half the banks in the district and send a lot of disgruntled settlers back to the North with empty pockets and a cordial feeling of dislike for our beautiful section.

If you will consult the United States Bureau of Markets in the Department of Agriculture in Washington, they will tell you all the facts in the matter and support them with figures that are conclusive. I have discussed the whole question with them from A to Izzard and I haven’t found a man in the Bureau who is anything but a pessimist about the immediate future of the peach situation in the South or the citrus industry. Last week in Washington I was told by one of the men high up in the Bureau that in his opinion not more than 60 percent of a normal apple crop could be marketed at profitable prices in this country today. He supports this assertion by pointing to the present crop which is going at profitable prices and which is only 60 percent of a normal crop.

The unfortunate thing is that the very accurate information that these men have in Washington cannot be presented to the farmers officially because of the political pressure that would immediately brought on the Department by real estate operators and the railroads if anything were said that might tend to discourage additional planting or break a real estate boom.

The blight of any fruit district is the man who wants to sell land rather than enter seriously into the production of fruit. We have such people here and if they were given enough rein they would land this district on the rocks as sure as shooting. How much harm have they actually done us remains to be seen.

It is a pity that the U.S. Bureau of Markets cannot be invited by the fruit producing districts of the South to make a survey of present planting and production and report on the condition and probable future of the industry. Such information would be accepted by the public as disinterested whereas if an individual or group of individuals attempt to supply such information the public assumes that they have some special end to serve.

How you can blink the fact that Georgia filed to market between four and six thousand carloads of peaches this past season and actually left them to rot in the orchards because the prices at the terminal markets would not pay the freight and contend that there was no overproduction of peaches is beyond me. Everybody that has looked into the situation recognizes the truth. The Georgia and South Carolina Peach Exchanges recognize it so well that they have issued statements in the public press to the effect that there is an overproduction and are urging a moratorium on planting so that no additional fruit shall come in before 1932.

You are kind enough to state that I am no coward. I trust that I am not but when I consider the situation before us in the peach business I feel like one. Frankly I would get out if I could. Not being able to do so however, I shall do what I can to see the proposition through, taking care of my own interests first of all and helping others where and when I can. At present I believe the biggest assistance I can be to others is to present the facts about the industry as I see them. I felt this two years ago when I hired space in the local press together with others who felt as I did and advised against an extension of the industry here. You may not believe it, but I did not take this action with the idea that it would assist me in getting votes in case I decided to run for Congress or to be elected dog catcher.

I am neither so stupid or so selfish as to want to be only one of a handful of people who have the peach market to themselves. Under such conditions it would be extremely difficult to succeed. We are all benefitted by each others’ experience in this business and unless we have trained labour at our command we cannot operate as efficiently as we should. There is a great advantage in operating in a district composed of intelligent and efficient growers who set a high standard of quality for their fruit.

Two other misstatements you made were that the car of peaches I shipped to England made a hit and that I come of a family that used to catch whales. The car we shipped to England sold very slowly and the fruit was not appreciated by the public. The net return was not sufficient to warrant the enormous risk taken in shipping across the water and I doubt if I ever try it again. As for the whales my ancestors never caught any that I am aware of. They were East India traders up till the war of 1812 when they had the good sense to get out of the shipping business. So far as I know I am the only Jonah that my family has produced.

With kindest regards, Sincerely yours, Roger A. Derby, October 25th, 1924

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Roger Derby's Opinions on Growing Peaches in North Carolina, 1924

“Derby and His Doctrine” from the editorial page of the Nov. 7, 1924 issue of The Pilot, Vass, N.C.

The Pilot is offering this week a document from Roger Derby on the peach situation. It is no matter that many things he says are not the sentiment of the paper. It is hoped the day may never come when The Pilot agrees with everybody or when it does not agree with people it will forbid them a hearing, for the first value of common sense and intelligence is to use it in hunting out truth no matter where it may be. Derby is a man who has a lot of sense and a lot of experience, and it is always wise to listen to a man of that type, no matter what he has to say, for much what that sort of man says is bound to be right.

The peach situation is one of great importance to this section. It is desirable to dig down into the facts that pertain to this subject, and to weigh all of them offered by all believers. Then it never hurts to know the truth no matter where it comes from, and no matter how much it may surprise us, for it is never the truth that puts us wrong but the lack of the truth. The Pilot likes a fellow like Derby for what he is after is the fact, not to substantiate an argument. Derby doesn’t care two cents to be triumphant in his opinion if those opinions are not correct. We need in this country and in this state and in this nation more men like Derby, who stand for what they think is the truth, and who want the truth and not propaganda or argument, which is becoming the abomination of the newspapers.

It is a fact that the peach men do not yet know just how to handle their problem. Different ones are hunting in different directions for the solution. But no matter what anyone finds out, or he thinks he has found out, it is wise to give him a hearing, and ask in all sincerity if he may not have reached a correct conclusion. If he has not it is always wise to find out, for next to knowing where to look for anything is knowing where it is no longer of use to look. The Pilot believe that wide-open discussion of anything is best treatment of all subjects. Until one among us arises who is wise to the limit it is profitable to all of us to hear what any intelligent and honest man has to offer. Mr. Derby’s story is a little long for The Pilot and necessity compels the request the subject offered for discussion be handled in as few words as possible, but it is the ambition of the paper to be able to offer everybody a place for an expression of any honest opinion on any legitimate theme, any time.