100 years ago

Help Support CattleToday:

1982vett

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
Messages
9,507
Reaction score
306
Location
Central Texas
Ran across this study done in 1903 - 1904 on growing corn and cow peas. Found interesting the recommended plant spacing. I think things have changed since then.

It is a common practice in dairy sections to grow cow-peas
and corn in separate fields and mix them as the silo is being
filled. It would seem a more desirable practice to grow the
corn and cow-peas together. An experiment along this line
was conducted at this Station during 1903, 1904 and 1905, the
corn and cow-peas being planted together in rows. When
planted the right thickness-corn 12 to 24 inches
and peas
4 to 6 inches apart in drill-rows 3½ feet apart-each grew
equally well and produced from ten to fourteen tons of green
fodder per acre. The cow-peas twined around the corn-stalks,
making the crop easy t o harvest with the corn-binder.


http://www.oznet.k-state.edu/historicpu ... /SB160.PDF

Thinking about different times and different practices, I wonder which farmer made more profit on their crop. The one in 1905 or the one in 2005? Something tells me it was the one in 1905.
 

Cowdirt

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 25, 2005
Messages
723
Reaction score
0
Location
Mid TN, USA
I rent the rowcrop land on my farm to a local rowcrop farmer. He usually rotates between corn and soybean. This yr. it's corn. I noticed the other day that the rows are less than two feet apart and the plants are at a minimum of six inches apart. That's a big change from the days I helped my dad grow corn. We laid the rows of, planted and cultivated with horses. The rows were about 3 1/2' feet apart as stated in the article. We used very little fertilizer and what we used as I remember was 3-6-6. Later on our cotton we used 6-12-12.
 

lavacarancher

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 6, 2009
Messages
1,960
Reaction score
0
Location
Lavaca county, Texas
I still use 37" row spacing on what row crops I still plant. It's not because there is any trick or anything, it's just because all my row crop equipment is set to 37" spacing and so are my tractors.

I knew that the "real" farmers out there used something much less because, i guess, you can get more crop in the same given space. They used to say the same thing about "contour" farming where they said you could get more crop in the same space if you used crooked rows. That I find a little hard to believe but they are Jesse James - they can rob the train anyway they want.
 

TexasBred

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
30,765
Reaction score
269
Location
Heart of Texas
Cowdirt":30cjylbr said:
I rent the rowcrop land on my farm to a local rowcrop farmer. He usually rotates between corn and soybean. This yr. it's corn. I noticed the other day that the rows are less than two feet apart and the plants are at a minimum of six inches apart. That's a big change from the days I helped my dad grow corn. We laid the rows of, planted and cultivated with horses. The rows were about 3 1/2' feet apart as stated in the article. We used very little fertilizer and what we used as I remember was 3-6-6. Later on our cotton we used 6-12-12.

My dad use to use on called "Old Black Joe" 5-10-5......When 8-8-8 came out everbody said it would burn everything up.
 

Brandonm22

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 7, 2008
Messages
1,848
Reaction score
0
1982vett":onjosaqh said:
Thinking about different times and different practices, I wonder which farmer made more profit on their crop. The one in 1905 or the one in 2005? Something tells me it was the one in 1905.

You are probably right; BUT the 1905 guy did NOT pay an electric bill, a satellite bill, a water bill, or a phone bill (cell or landline). He did not have to buy propane to heat the house. He never paid a car payment. He didn't buy gas for the truck or diesal for the tractor. All he ate he grew, raised, picked, fished, or hunted. He never bought a seed from Monsanto (much less Roundup). When it was cold he threw another log on the fire and another blanket on the kids. When it was hot there was no air conditioning and no fan. His kids never asked for DVDs, GI Joes, or Barbis, and he never paid for Health Insurance (though he probably buried some kids too). Most of those guys lived in homes they built themselves that no building inspector would permit today. He never paid Social Security or income taxes; but he never got a social security check or federal disaster assistance either much less price supports and his kids walked 5 miles to school. IF we LIVED as simply as the 1905 guy COULD we do as well? Would we really want to try?
 

dun

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 28, 2003
Messages
47,334
Reaction score
9
Location
MO Ozarks
Brandonm22":2in9wjsx said:
1982vett":2in9wjsx said:
Thinking about different times and different practices, I wonder which farmer made more profit on their crop. The one in 1905 or the one in 2005? Something tells me it was the one in 1905.

You are probably right; BUT the 1905 guy did NOT pay an electric bill, a satellite bill, a water bill, or a phone bill (cell or landline). He did not have to buy propane to heat the house. He never paid a car payment. He didn't buy gas for the truck or diesal for the tractor. All he ate he grew, raised, picked, fished, or hunted. He never bought a seed from Monsanto (much less Roundup). When it was cold he threw another log on the fire and another blanket on the kids. When it was hot there was no air conditioning and no fan. His kids never asked for DVDs, GI Joes, or Barbis, and he never paid for Health Insurance (though he probably buried some kids too). Most of those guys lived in homes they built themselves that no building inspector would permit today. He never paid Social Security or income taxes; but he never got a social security check or federal disaster assistance either much less price supports and his kids walked 5 miles to school. IF we LIVED as simply as the 1905 guy COULD we do as well? Would we really want to try?

He probably didn;t have near as long to make any money since the average lifespan was shorter then.
 

Stocker Steve

Well-known member
Joined
May 2, 2005
Messages
11,167
Reaction score
525
Location
Central Minnesota
Brandonm22":ra3zktzw said:
You are probably right; BUT the 1905 guy did NOT pay an electric bill, a satellite bill, a water bill, or a phone bill (cell or landline). He did not have to buy propane to heat the house. He never paid a car payment. He didn't buy gas for the truck or diesal for the tractor. All he ate he grew, raised, picked, fished, or hunted. He never bought a seed from Monsanto (much less Roundup). When it was cold he threw another log on the fire and another blanket on the kids. When it was hot there was no air conditioning and no fan. His kids never asked for DVDs, GI Joes, or Barbis, and he never paid for Health Insurance (though he probably buried some kids too). Most of those guys lived in homes they built themselves that no building inspector would permit today. He never paid Social Security or income taxes; but he never got a social security check or federal disaster assistance either much less price supports and his kids walked 5 miles to school. IF we LIVED as simply as the 1905 guy COULD we do as well? Would we really want to try?

No and No:
The MN Amish try but they are really struggling. They live simply BUT the price they get for (commodity) farm products does not pencil out. So they weave baskets and sew quilts and saw logs and do construction to try and make ends meet.
 
OP
1982vett

1982vett

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
Messages
9,507
Reaction score
306
Location
Central Texas
dun":1fluz085 said:
You are probably right; BUT the 1905 guy did NOT pay an electric bill, a satellite bill, a water bill, or a phone bill (cell or landline). He did not have to buy propane to heat the house. He never paid a car payment. He didn't buy gas for the truck or diesal for the tractor. All he ate he grew, raised, picked, fished, or hunted. He never bought a seed from Monsanto (much less Roundup). When it was cold he threw another log on the fire and another blanket on the kids. When it was hot there was no air conditioning and no fan. His kids never asked for DVDs, GI Joes, or Barbis, and he never paid for Health Insurance (though he probably buried some kids too). Most of those guys lived in homes they built themselves that no building inspector would permit today. He never paid Social Security or income taxes; but he never got a social security check or federal disaster assistance either much less price supports and his kids walked 5 miles to school. IF we LIVED as simply as the 1905 guy COULD we do as well? Would we really want to try?


None of those have anything to do with making profit from a crop, they are how you choose to spend it.

No, I don't think I want to turn back the clock on the technology we now use. I wouldn't be against returning to a similar profit margin. You do have to remember his crops did paid for it all. If they would now, a lot of people in agriculture wouldn't need the two off farm jobs.

Both my Grandfathers married, raised a family, bought and paid for a piece of land from the land in their 60 year lifespans during this era.

The Amish probably are a good comparison. Are they getting married and starting out on their own, or are they doing like most, taking over something that has already been started?
 

Jogeephus

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 17, 2006
Messages
24,228
Reaction score
1
Location
South Georgia
A friend of mine's grandfather bought a 400 acre farm about this time. The US Navy was looking for poles for some ships they were building. They came to his farm and picked out 4 trees that met their specs. He cut them down and drug them to the hill with a mule team and the navy took possession of them at the road. The money they paid him (~$400) paid for the farm. I always thought that was interesting.
 

TexasBred

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
30,765
Reaction score
269
Location
Heart of Texas
Was there some kind of law back then that restricted people from building a house within 5 miles of the school?? Seems everybody always walked a minimum of 5 miles.
 

Brandonm22

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 7, 2008
Messages
1,848
Reaction score
0
TexasBred":3l2hldo4 said:
Was there some kind of law back then that restricted people from building a house within 5 miles of the school?? Seems everybody always walked a minimum of 5 miles.

Five miles sounds about right to me. The kids really can't walk much too much more than 5 miles one way every day (about an hour and a half stroll)

http://walking.about.com/cs/fitnesswalk ... espace.htm

so in a vast rural pre-car landscape you would need a town or hamlet (school, church, mill, smith, and general store) every ten miles..........or somebody is going to have to hitch a team up everyday to take the kids to school and repeat that to bring them back. My county had more elementary schools then than we do now although our population is much higher.
 
OP
1982vett

1982vett

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
Messages
9,507
Reaction score
306
Location
Central Texas
TexasBred":xw1nhccp said:
Was there some kind of law back then that restricted people from building a house within 5 miles of the school?? Seems everybody always walked a minimum of 5 miles.

:lol: The real trick was to get it uphill both ways. :lol:

And I thought it was bad to walk 1/4 mile home from the bus stop. :shock: Except for the first 100 yards it was uphill all the way. :)
 

dun

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 28, 2003
Messages
47,334
Reaction score
9
Location
MO Ozarks
Brandonm22":3t5obn4m said:
TexasBred":3t5obn4m said:
Was there some kind of law back then that restricted people from building a house within 5 miles of the school?? Seems everybody always walked a minimum of 5 miles.

Five miles sounds about right to me. The kids really can't walk much too much more than 5 miles one way every day (about an hour and a half stroll)

http://walking.about.com/cs/fitnesswalk ... espace.htm

so in a vast rural pre-car landscape you would need a town or hamlet (school, church, mill, smith, and general store) every ten miles..........or somebody is going to have to hitch a team up everyday to take the kids to school and repeat that to bring them back. My county had more elementary schools then than we do now although our population is much higher.

Interesting you should mention that. When we fiorst moved to this area I couldn;t understand why every 10-12 miles there was a town. I asked one day and was told "That's about as far as you can walk in one day" Makes sense to me
 

TexasBred

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 15, 2007
Messages
30,765
Reaction score
269
Location
Heart of Texas
1982vett":zf7iuepf said:
TexasBred":zf7iuepf said:
Was there some kind of law back then that restricted people from building a house within 5 miles of the school?? Seems everybody always walked a minimum of 5 miles.

:lol: The real trick was to get it uphill both ways. :lol:

And I thought it was bad to walk 1/4 mile home from the bus stop. :shock: Except for the first 100 yards it was uphill all the way. :)

lol, never could figure out the uphill part myself...nor always barefoot thru snow even down here in Texas. Guess all the stores etc. were close to where the houses were located but the school was always 5 miles out in the boondocks. You'd a thunk Maw and Paw would have built closer to the school so those kids could get home and go to work quicker.
 
Top