Home  The Great Depression  1930's Life on a Farm  Presentations  Games

The Great Depression: Life on the Farm




Last time I told you a story about my childhood, I seemed to ramble on and on. I'll try to make this one short and sweet. I told you about our cows. We also raised pigs and chickens.

We called the pigs hogs. Seemed like all they did was eat, so I guess that was a good name for them. When we butchered one, my daddy did most of the work. He made sugar-cured hams that were better than any ham you have ever tasted. We had some pork chops and roast pork, but mostly it was all ground up and made into sausage. That got canned so that it would keep all year long.

We bought the chickens when they were very small. We had a big chicken house for them and a fenced area where they could roam around outside. When they got big, we kept some just to lay eggs and killed some so we could have fried chicken. Some of them grew almost as big as a turkey. That's because one of my brothers did some kind of operation on them. From them on, they were called capons. I don't think anyone sells those anymore. Maybe they just don't want to do that extra work. They sure don't know what they're missing. Capons were really good.

Now we have ham, sausage, eggs, chicken, and capons to add to that long list of things that we didn't have to buy. Weren't we lucky?

I might as well tell you about the fruit we had too. We had strawberries, blueberries, red raspberries, and loads of blackberries. They grew wild, so we had enough of them to make lots of jam.

Did we ever have grapes! There was one long arbor of white grapes. The purple grapes were on an arbor along the sidewalk from the house to the barn .. down one side, over the top, and down the other side. I don't know why my daddy planted so many. Mostly we just made lots of grape jelly. My daddy was smart enough to learn how to make wine, but he didn't do that. He didn't think wine was good for you.

Some of our fruit was on trees. There were pears; apples for sauce, cider, and vinegar, and one sour cherry tree. Our biggest fruit tree was a mulberry. I don't know anyone who has a mulberry tree. Do you suppose they don't grow anymore? All I know is that those mulberries and sour cherries mixed together made the best pie you ever tasted!

One big tree we had was a black walnut. Those walnuts had a much thicker shell than you are used to on English walnuts, and we had to use a hammer to crack it. After all that trouble, black walnuts just simply weren't as good as your English walnuts. But they were okay for cookies or muffins.

We didn't grow corn. It took lots of land for a cornfield and we only had seven acres. But some of our relatives did grow corn. They had heard about my father canning sausage and wanted to do the same with their corn. Once a year, they came to our house with a whole truckload of corn. Their whole family would come. They brought all kinds of casseroles, cakes, pies, and a salad to have a big supper after all the work was done. The older people shucked corn and cut it off the cob ready for my daddy to can it. We got to play all day with lots of kids for a change. That was one glorious day!

I also found a way to have corn-on-the-cob all season long. The farmers trucks loaded with corn on the way to the market passed right by our farm. Every time they went up that steep hill in the road, they lost a few ears. I just jumped on my bike, gathered them up, and we were all set for a feast!

Now I've really told you about all the things we either grew or raised on our farm. I do believe if the whole world around us had disappeared, we could have gotten along quite well for a long time. Didn't I have a wonderful childhood?

  Move Forward - Next Page  

Return to Table of Contents


Free Presentations in PowerPoint format

 Free Clip Art

 All Rights Reserved
Have a great year!