Cannabis sativa, 1828

Growing Cannabis to Fight Exploitation

In the early years of cannabis prohibition, agricultural workers in the western United States used the plant to treat pain and supplement family incomes.
Vintage image of a baseball game in the late 19th century.

Baseball History and Rural America

Baseball's creation myth is bunk, and historians have shown how important cities were to the game's development. But it was still a rural passion.
WPA bookmobile

How Reading Got Farm Women Through the Depression

They worked over sixty hours a week but were also insatiable readers.

The Latent Racism of the Better Homes in America Program

How Better Homes in America—a collaboration between Herbert Hoover and the editor of a conservative women’s magazine—promoted idealized whiteness.
Elsie the Cow

Who Was Elsie, besides the World’s Most Famous Cow?

In the Great Depression, Borden sought a new spokescow to help preserve its traditional agrarian image.
Classic cars drive along dirt road in the mountains

The End of the Country Road

When "good roads" first became a political issue, rural people were decidedly not the ones advocating for them.
Good Housekeeping October 1905

Speaking for Rural America, 100 Years Ago

In the early 20th century, the Country Life Movement tried to make rural life appeal to women. But it ignored many truths about farms and women alike.
Close-Up Of Bees In Hive

Bees and the World-Wide Farming Web

Connections between beekeepers in the 17th and 18th centuries created the early “world-wide farming web”—a way to share information across long distances.
Lady Loinette

The Feminist Evolution of the Iowa Porkettes

In Iowa, between 1964 and 1991, groups of women—the wives of pork farmers—boosted the supposed benefits of pork-heavy diets. They were the Iowa Porkettes.
Piper Cub plane farmers

An Airplane in Every Barn?

Why airborne farming hasn’t been cleared for take-off.