Veterans Day is this week and as we take this time to honor and remember not only those who served our country, but those who also kept our farms going while men were called away to serve their country.
Before World War II many farms were still trying to recover from the Depression and devastating damage from the Dust Bowl. As many fathers, brothers and sons were being called away for the war, it was leaving farms short on labor. How were farms to survive? The government was also asking farms to produce more food for soldiers on top of what was already being produced for families in the U.S. Many farmers were eager to produce more crops in hopes that it would help them financially. Being short handed was an obstacle that was going to be a challenge to overcome. One of the answers came out of new technology. Tractors, combines and other farming equipment were being bought up quickly to help with labor shortages and to produce the extra food the government was asking farms to provide for soldiers. Farmers were also asked to share their equipment with those that did not have the equipment needed to keep up with their workload. If farms had older equipment they were asked, instead of replacing with new equipment, the old equipment be brought in for repairs. This was due to plants being utilized in manufacturing equipment used for building tanks, ships, ammo and planes for the war.
Many felt the American farmer was as equally as important as the soldier facing the battles overseas. Despite the terrible losses suffered by so many families, this time in history helped to raise up the farming industry out of the rut it had been stuck in for several decades.