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Prepared by College ol Agriculture, University of Illinois 


To Illinois Junior Qitizens 

In Cities and Towns . . . 

OU have the opportunity to render a patriotic service that 
has not come to many boys and girls of past generations. 
American farmers have been asked to grow more food and 
fiber in 1943 than they have ever before produced even in years 
of the most bountiful harvests. If we fail to meet the rapidly 
increasing demands of our armies, our civilian workers, our 
allies, and the liberated peoples for these essential war mate- 
rials, the whole war effort will be handicapped and thousands 
of lives lost that could have been saved. 

Illinois farmers can do their share in this great effort only if 
large numbers of able and willing farm workers are found to 
replace the thousands who have left our farms to enter the 
armed forces and essential war industries. This is where strong, 
interested, intelligent city boys and girls can make a truly im- 
portant contribution to our war effort. 

To those of you who are willing and able to enter service on 
our farms, I commend this booklet. It has been written espe- 
cially for you by members of the staff of the College of 
Agriculture of your State University — men who have grown up 
on farms, have studied farm life, and know the problems young 
people will meet on farms. It has been issued by the Illinois 
State Council of Defense It will help you to get acquainted with 
what lies before you and prepare for it. Study it thoroughly and 
take to heart all the advice you find there. 

The State of Illinois, your country, and the hungry people of 
Europe will recognize and be grateful for your help. 

Springfield, Illinois 

January, 1943 

^ /i 



iwim3nYoy iuiii8»- 


Prepared by 


Issued by 


Gov. DwiGHT H. Green, Chairman 
Frank O. Lowden, Honorary Chairman 

Murray M. Baker, Vice Chairman 
Lieut. Gov. Hugh W. Cross, Secretary 
Speaker Elmer J. Schnackenberg, Treasurer 
Sen. Arnold P. Benson Reuben G. Soderstrom 

Rep. Reed F. Cutler Barney Thompson 

Sen. Richard J. Daley Charles M. Thompson 

Stuart Duncan Mrs. Frederic W. Upham 

Rev. James L. Horace Rep. Bernice T. Van der Vries 

Henry P. Rusk Rep. William Vicars 

Capt. William F. Waugh 

The farm is a home as well as a place of business. This family enjoys an attrac- 
tive house and a well-kept lawn. The livestock are housed in the barn in the rear. 
The farmer is on the way to the field with a rack wagon, while his son gets the mail 
left by the rural mail carrier. 

Why City Boys and Girls Are 
Needed on Farms in 1943 

Your Part in the War Effort 

Right now you and all persons in the United States are being called 
upon to contribute your utmost to the war effort. Let's stop and take 
inventory. Just what specific things have you done to help defeat the 
Axis Powers? 

If your school has been active in the scrap, rubber, and other salvage 
drives, you have no doubt contributed some time and effort in helping 
collect these precious war materials. Many of you are defense bond holders, 
or save a large share of your allowance or earnings for defense stamps. 
These and other contributions are important — but, are they enough? If 
we are to exterminate fascism and its brutal, undemocratic forces from 
the face of this earth, we have a fight on our hands that requires an all- 
out effort on the part of every citizen in our country. Each individual 
must contribute his time and abilities to the fullest extent. 

Of course, at the present, your proper place is in school — developing 
skills and gathering essential knowledge in preparing yourself to become 
an active, intelligent citizen of our democracy. But — what about the vaca- 
tion period next summer? You will have some three months available 
then. How can you use that time to make the maximum contribution to 
the war effort? The serious shortage of workers in our farm areas pro- 
vides a challenging answer to this question. 

Agriculture — A National Industry 

Agriculture is the oldest occupation of civilized man. Tending flocks 
and producing crops for food and clothing — the necessities of life — were 
some of his earliest productive activities. 

When we think and speak of agriculture, it is generally in terms of 
an individual farm. Consequently, we often think of it as a small industry 
or business. But in 1940 agriculture in the United States ranked second 
only to manufacturing in the number of workers employed. Eighteen 
and five-tenths percent of all employed persons were in agriculture. On 
the basis of net income, agriculture ranked fourth among the industries, 
being exceeded only by manufacturing, trade, and finance. It has been 
estimated that in 1937 each farm person produced enough food for him- 
self and three and one-half additional persons. A major portion of our 
population is wholly dependent on commercial agriculture for food and 

Agriculture — An Essential War Industry 

In normal times agriculture is an essential industry of the Nation; 
in war times it assumes vital significance. Production goals in 1943 in 

Page 6 

the United States call for an increase of 10 percent over the 1941 levels. 
Secretary Wickard has said that about one-fourth of this production will 
be needed for the armed forces and for lend-lease shipments. Farmers 
of Illinois have been asked to increase their 1943 production over that of 
1942 by the following percentages: corn, 4 percent; barley, 12 percent; 
potatoes, 8 percent; cattle, 3 percent; hogs, 15 percent; chickens, 8 per- 
cent — and these are only part of the items. 

As a result of the increased efforts of farmers, favorable weather 
and the influx of older men and women and children to farms making a 
barely adequate labor supply, agricultural production was at a high level 
in 1942. Total production is estimated to have been 9 percent above 1941, 
whereas production goals called for only a 6 percent increase. Corn, 
soybean, and pork production all set new records. 

American farmers have successfully met the challenge of the first 
year of the war. But, with the demand for still further increases, what 
is the prospect for 1943? 

The Farm Labor Situation 

Farmers are being asked for further increases in the production of a 
number of commodities in 1943. Statistics show that about 1,600,000 
farm workers and operators left their farm jobs between September, 
1941, and September, 1942, 43 percent to enter the armed forces, and 57 
percent to go into the ranks of industry. A great many more have left 
since September, and the number that will be called to the armed forces 
in 1943 will continue to deplete the already inadequate supply. 

In a recent survey, more than one-third of America's farmers said 
that unless they could obtain help from sources other than those now 
available, they would have to greatly reduce their output in 1943. 

The need for additional food production in 1943 is vital. Without it 
the tremendous task of feeding large numbers of the civilian population 
in allied and conquered countries, as well as the members of our armed 
forces and the people of our nation, cannot be done. We cannot, we must 
not, disappoint these people. They depend on the products of agriculture 
for the garments that clothe them, and for the food which provides the 
physical stamina needed to wage a successful fight against the enemy. 

A Challenge to the City Youth of America 

This is where you, the city youth of America, fit in. The nation 
looks to you to help solve this crucial problem. Here is your opportunity 
to make a really impressive contribution to the war program. If you are 
physically fit, alert, and willing to learn, this is the chance you have been 
waiting for to back up the men on Democracy's fighting fronts with actual 
deeds, while at the same time improving your own physical trim, laying 
up funds for the future, and gaining skills that will always be valuable. 
Don't let your country down. Help it solve its farm labor problem ! 

Page 7 


Work, Wages, and Living 

The Nature of Farm Work 

Before deciding to work on a farm, you should consider rather care- 
fully whether you "can take it." Farm work is hard work. Naturally 
not all the jobs you will be asked to do are difficult, but there are a number 
of jobs, such as pitching hay, which require a great amount of physical 
exertion. Farmers cannot use boys who are physically soft or lazy. If 
you are not willing to do hard work, you had better forget about working 
on a farm. Farmers generally will recognize your limitations and not 
expect you to do work which is too strenuous for you, but they will expect 
you to do your very best on the physically hard work. If you are looking 
toward next summer on a farm as a time to relax and take life easy, forget 
about farm work ! The farmers are too busy in this war effort to be 
bothered by persons who are not willing to work. On the other hand, if 
you are ready to accept a challenge to your physical vitality and ability, 
a number of farmers will be glad to have you work for them. 

The physical exertion re- 
quired for farm work is not just 
a matter of being able to lift a bag 
of feed ; it involves endurance. We 
hear much talk these days about 
keeping fit. If you work on a farm 
this summer, you will be doing a 
great deal towards maintaining 
"physical fitness." Fresh air, sun- 
shine, plenty of food, lots of sleep, 
and an abundance of exercise will 
condition you physically. 

Now, how about your work- 
ing hours? It is important to re- 
member that, unlike business men, 
the farmer doesn't keep "office 
hours." Much of his work can be 
done only when weather condi- 
tions are favorable, even though 
there are some farm jobs that 
must be carried on rain or shine. 
Since the weather period favor- 


Pitching hay is typical of work done in the 
fields during the summer months. It is hard 
work, and skill is required if a satisfactory 
amount of hay is to be put in the barn each 
day. Hay can be put up only when dry, and 
since it is of inferior quality if rained on, 
farmers are in a hurry during the haying 

On livestock farms much time is devoted to "chores." Sows with Httle pigs will 

be fed and watered twice each day and the bedding changed when it gets damp. Later 

these pigs may be put on a self-feeder. 

able for certain operations is often short, the farmer literally must "make 
hay while the sun shines." 

There is no "eig-ht-hour day" on a farm, either. There will be times 
on any farm when you may be expected to work ten or twelve hours a day, 
and on some farms such hours may be the rule rather than the exception. 
It is interesting to note, however, that despite longer hours, statistics 
show that rural people are generally as healthy as city dwellers. 

Finally, you must keep in mind that the farmer does not have a 
"white collar" job. Just as he does not keep office hours, neither does he 
wear office clothes. You will be asked to perform jobs at which you cannot 
keep clean, some of which you may even consider unpleasant. If you are 
on a livestock farm, it is likely that you may be asked to help clean out 
the barn or feedlot; this means shoveling or pitching manure. During 
harvesting, if you work around a combine, baler, or threshing machine, 
you may find the job a dusty one. If you operate a tractor cultivator on 
a windy day, you may find that when you stop work the only visible white 
spots on you are the whites of your eyes. Naturally only a relatively small 
percent of the farm jobs are extremely dirty, but if you cannot stand 
dirt, don't accept farm work. 

The type of jobs you will be asked to do on the farm depends on the 
type of farm on which you work. You may be expected to do a wide variety 
of jobs, or the farmer may want someone who will do the same work all 
the time he is on the farm. Information contained in this booklet will 
help you visualize the jobs to be done on different kinds of farms. They 
will range all the way from various tasks in the care of the dairy herd, 
horses, pigs, sheep, beef cattle, or poultry to operating farm equipment 
such as tractors, plows, binders, and threshing machines, or planting, 
cultivating and hai'\'esting the crops. 

Page 9 

It takes more than just muscle to do the job. Farm work calls for 
stamina and physical endurance. Remember, too, that in the farmer's 
eyes you will be a comparatively "green" worker. It takes years to 
develop a truly skilled farm worker, and in the beginning you may be more 
of a liability than an asset to him. To be successful, you will have to 
follow his instructions carefully and accurately, and work hard at the 
tasks assigned you. 

Wages and Living Conditions 

One of the first questions in the mind of anyone considering a job 
is that of wages. It is rather difficult to say exactly what wages you can 
expect. In the summer of 1942 inexperienced city boys who accepted farm 
work for the entire summer received about a dollar a day plus room, 
board, and laundry. With the increased demand for workers in 1943 and 
rising farm prices, it may be that some farmers will be willing to pay 
more than this for boys who demonstrate their ability and willingness to 
do farm work. 

In arriving at a total wage, you will have to add to your cash wage 
the value of food, room, laundry, and whatever else may be furnished. 
The value of these additional items may be more of a real advantage to 
your parents than to you because most of you still live at home where 
your room and board is furnished. Though wages may appear small, you 
will undoubtedly be able to save some money since your major needs will 
be supplied, and there will be many enjoyable ways to use your spare time 
that do not require spending any money. 

Living conditions vary from farm to farm. Many farmers have com- 
pletely modern homes; others have none of the modern conveniences. 
When you go to work on a farm, you may expect to be considered pretty 
much as "one of the family"; in fact, if the farmer has a son of about 
your age you may be asked to share his room. Generally speaking, most 
farm homes are clean and have comfortable sleeping rooms. You will 
receive plenty of substantial food, even though it may not be in the form 
of some of the fancy dishes and style you have been accustomed to in the 

Over one-fifth of the total number of people in our country are farm 
workers or farm dwellers. Here is an opportunity for you to develop an 
understanding of these people, their life, and problems, and make many 
friendships which you will appreciate in years to come. 

There^s a Place for the Girls, Too 

High school girls who are interested in helping out the farm situation 
will not be excluded from jobs this summer! The greatest demand for 
workers will no doubt be for boys since many of the jobs require hard 
physical labor. Although the heavier field work and machine operations 
will be performed by the men, you high school girls can help with a great 
many of the tasks discussed in the following pages. 

Page 10 

Your greatest value will probably lie in the work that you do around 
the farm home — helping with the general housework, cooking, and work- 
ing in the garden. If a large share of the household responsibilities can 
be delegated to you, the more experienced farm women will be able to 
pitch in and help with some of the skilled operations around the farm, 
such as driving the tractor, etc. 

A Contribution to War Effort and Personal Development 

The preceding information has given you a general picture of what 
you may expect if you decide to accept farm work. In arriving at a 
decision, take into consideration what jobs are available in the city and 
the wages they pay. 

Get different opinions by talking to several of the boys in your school 
who worked on farms last summer. Some of them will be enthusiastic 
about it; others may report unfavorably. Try to get enough reactions 
and comments to enable you to make an intelligent decision. 

Keep in mind that working on a farm is a direct contribution to the 
war effort in two ways : First, it means helping to relieve the labor short- 
age that threatens to cut down our supply of essential food and clothing. 
Second, it develops a quality in you that is needed in our fighting men — 
physical fitness. You may be in the armed forces before this war is over. 

Remember, too, that education through experience, the most effective of 
all teachers, is at your service. A relatively large share of this education 
is general enough to have value to you in everyday life. There is an 
opportunity to use many of the small tools and equipment on a farm in 
other lines of work, and to develop a variety of manual skills. There is 
much for you to gain personally at the same time that you contribute to 
the war effort. 

For those of you who have a lively interest in plant or animal life, and 
have enjoyed your botany or biology classes, farm life offers unexcelled 
opportunity. Your experience in tending living, growing plants and ani- 
mals will be invaluable in helping you to observe, note, and understand 
the principles you have studied. 

Think over all these things. Then, having received your parents' 
consent, the final decision lies with you. 

On many farms the poultry will be fed and 

watered by girls, so that the men will have 

more time for field work. 

Page 11 


Press Assn. Inc. Photo 


Preparing and Planning 
for Farm Work 

Start Making Plans Now 

This program can't be expected to be one-hundred-percent perfect. It 
would be surprising if every boy who attends these meetings were to be 
placed on a farm next summer. It would be equally surprising if every 
one of you "stuck it out" after being placed on a farm ! However, prepa- 
ration and planning will help to work out a program that will be as nearly 
perfect as can be expected. The main purpose of those who are responsible 
for the program is to see that you will be happy in your work, and that the 
farmers, in turn, are satisfied with your help. 

What preparation and plans should you be making now? 

It has been pointed out that farm work is hard work physically. It 
will also require you to do a lot of thinking and to make a number of 
decisions. One of your first tasks is to prove to those who are offering 
this training that, physically and mentally, you deserve to be chosen for 
a farm job. To be a real aid to some farmer next summer, it will be neces- 
sary for you to start right now to prepare, both physically and mentally, 

for your job. 

Well-made plans 

are important in any 
enterprise. Start 
making yours for 
this undertaking 
now; then put them 
into effect at the 
first opportunity. Of 
course, we all realize 
that under present 
emergency condi- 
tions, even the best 
laid plans may go 
awry, but that pos- 
sibility should not 
deter us from mak- 
ing plans and then 
rearranging them if 
it becomes neces- 

Page 12 

A flock of sheep requires a lot of attention at lambing time in 
late winter or early spring. 

These farm girls are feeding hay to their 
father's Hereford cows (beef cows) in an out- 
side rack. Most farmers will be unwilling to 
use city girls for caring for livestock, but city 
boys can be a lot of help at this 'job. 

Personal Preparation — 
Physical and Mental 

Take advantage of every op- 
portunity to increase your knowl- 
edge and experience in regard to 

Meetings will be held at vari- 
ous centers in your city. These 
will be designed especially for city 
youth who are planning to work 
on farms this summer. Qualified 
men, experienced in various phases 
of agriculture, will talk to you and 
lead discussions at these assemblies. 

Preceding each meeting, you will be given printed material to read. 
Study it carefully. Come prepared to ask questions and enter into the 
discussion. One or two ideas which you pick up, or questions you raise, 
may prove of inestimable value to you and the rest of the group. 

Do not stop at this point. There are many good books on farming, 
farm life, and agriculture. Get acquainted with them for you can't learn 
too much. Although this so-called ''book learning" will not be one hundred 
percent effective in preparing you for farm work, you will find many of 
the books extremely interesting as well as highly instructive. 

Read the farm section of your newspapers and magazines. Farm 
magazines invariably contain instructive and interesting material. Take 
advantage of the mass of available publications on farming. 

In personal preparation, a program for physical fitness must not 
be overlooked. Condition yourself physically by entering wholeheartedly 
into your school sports, for farm work requires toughened and hardened 
muscles. Get accustomed to being out in the open air and doing physical 
exercise for an entire day. 

Learn by Visiting 

Finally, remember that the shortest road to the most learning is right 
on the farm itself. // you can possibly arrange to do so, go out on a farm 
over week-ends or during any vacation you may have between noiv and 
next summer. That is also the best way to find out whether you really 
want to do farm work and are suited for it. Contact the personnel officer 
of your school and he will attempt to place you on a nearby farm for a 
week-end or so, by getting in touch with the United States Employment 
Service or the Farm Labor Committee in a nearby county. 

Another w^ay to learn to identify livestock, machinery, and crops is 
to make visits to places in cities where you will be able to see actual 
<?!xamples of them. Supplement your extra reading, and greatly add to 
your practical knowledge, by visiting stockyards, produce dealers, machin- 
ery manufacturers, or implement dealers. 

If a large group of interested students can be gathered together, it may 
be possible to arrange for a regular guided inspection tour. This is one of 

Page 13 

the most valuable ways to learn about the animals, crops, and machinery 
you will be dealing with this summer. 

Placement Plans 

If you prove to those in charge of the training program that you are 
-qualified for, and really interested in farm work, every effort will be made 
to place you with a farmer who has indicated a willingness and desire to 
use relatively inexperienced workers. 

You will be asked to register for farm work and the farmer will also 
fill out a form. Then the farmer's request for a worker will be matched 
with the information on the student registration cards. In that way, it 
is hoped that boys will be placed on the type of farms they prefer and 
are best fitted for. 

The labor training program is not a one-sided affair. The problem 
of using inexperienced help is being discussed with farmers at meetings 
this winter. The farmers are familiar with this entire program, and will 
recognize that you are not seasoned, experienced farm hands. 

Another way to get placed on a farm this summer is to do so on 
your own initiative. If you have farm friends or relatives, get in touch 
with them. They may have something for you. If you do accept a job, 
be sure to notify the agency which has your registration card. Otherwise, 
valuable time may be wasted trying to place you. 

Those in charge of this program believe that most of the capable 
and willing city boys who complete this training course and follow the 
plan outlined for placement will stand a good chance of being placed on 
farms next summer. They are convinced that the success or failure of 
your summer will depend on how conscientiously and industriously you 
prepare and plan for it. 

The following is a list of books and papers which will help you to 
know more about living and working on a farm. 


Andersen, Homer Paul. "Your Career in Agriculture." E. P. Button & Co., Inc. 1940. 
Campbell, Alfred S. "An Introduction to Country Life." Princeton University Press. 

Deyoe, George P. and Ullrich, Fred T. "Getting Acquainted With Agriculture." The 

Interstate Printers & Publishers. 1941. 
Grim, James S. "Introduction to Agriculture." Allyn and Bacon. 1935. 
Scott, Winfield and Paul, Joseph B. "Permanent Agriculture." John Wiley & Sons, 

Inc. 1941. 


Hayne, Ralph A. "Stop Carelessness! Prevent Accidents!" International Harvester 

University of Illinois. "Shall We Move to the Country?" Circular 479. College of 
Agriculture. 1937. 

U. S. Department of Agriculture. "Seedtime and Harvest Today." Miscellaneous Pub- 
lication No. 485. U. S. Government Printing Office. 1942. 


Hoards Dairyman, W. D. Hoard & Sons Co., Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. Published the 

10th and 25th of each month. 
The Prairie Farmer, Prairie Farmer Publishing Co., Chicago, Illinois. Biweekly. 
Successful Farming, Meredith Publishing Co., Des Moines, Iowa. Monthly. 
Wallaces' Farmer and Iowa Homestead, Dante M. Pierce, Des Moines, Iowa. Biweekly. 

Page 14 


Dairy Cattle-Responsibilities for 
Feeding and Milking Them 

Cows Are Sensitive Animals 

Work on dairy farms is being discussed first because of its impor- 
tance. Dairying is the most important farm enterprise in the vicinity 
of large cities and requires a larger labor supply than most other types of 
farming. Therefore, there is more than a fifty-fifty chance of your work- 
ing on a farm where dairying is a major part of the farm business. 

The modern dairy cow is a sensitive animal highly developed for 
producing milk. Even a strange person in the barn will cause many dairy 

These are typical specimens of the five important dairy breeds. From left 
to right they are: Jersey, Guernsey, Brown Swiss, Ayrshire, and Holstein. 
Note differences in color, body shape, shape of head, and type of horns. 

Page 15 

cows to fall off in their milk pro- 
duction. A worker must therefore 
be skilled in caring for the dairy 
herd if he is to get maximum pro- 
duction from it. Care in feeding 
and management may easily mean 
the difference between getting 30 
or getting 40 pounds of milk per 
cow daily. When you go on the 
dairy farm, study the cows. Here 
are animals producing some of the 
most important food products in 
the world. Ask the farmer which 
cows are the best producers and 
then see if you can determine what features make them so. 

Bulls should be confined in well-built pens, 

and wise farm workers will stay out of these 

pens. The bull should be lead with a staff in 

the nose ring rather than with a rope. 

Terms You Need to Know 

When you start work on a farm you will adapt yourself to the work 
much more readily if you are familiar with some of the terms the farmer 
will use. A number of these terms and their definitions are listed below 
to aid you in developing a vocabulary for discussing or commenting upon 
dairy cattle: 

Cow — female of the species after she has produced her first calf. 

Bull — male of the species. 

Heifer — young female animal, usually so-called up to the birth of 
her calf when she starts producing milk. 

Calf — young animal usually under one year of age. Its sex is indi- 
cated by referring to it either as a heifer calf or a hull calf. 

Yearling — an animal, either male or female, between approximately 
one and two years of age. 

Dry cow — a mature cow not producing milk. Dairy cows are ordi- 
narily given a rest from milk production for three to six weeks 
after the end of a lactation period and before the next calving. 
During that period they are referred to as dry cows. 

Milk cow or milker — a cow in milk production or producing milk. 

To calve or to freshen — to give birth to a calf. Cows are normally 
bred to freshen once every eleven or twelve months. 

Springer — a cow or heifer nearing calving time (due to calve or 
freshen in the near future) . 

Whole milk — the normal milk as it comes from the cow. 

Cream separator — a machine for dividing whole milk into cream 
and skimmed milk. 

Stripping — milking the cow dry by hand, after the milking machine 
has been removed. 

Page 16 

A breed — a race of animals having similar characteristics or fea- 
tures as a result of originating from the same parental stock. 
Most of the ancestors of purebred animals can be traced back 
many more generations than can most of our ancestors. The 
common breeds of dairy cattle in Illinois are the Holstein (black 
and white), Guermsey (fawn and white), Broivn Swiss 
(brown), Jersey (fawn), and Ayrshire (red and white). The 
three breeds first mentioned are by far the most common in 
areas where whole milk is produced for the market. 

Care of a Dairy Herd 

For the purpose of discussion we shall divide the care of a dairy 
herd into five categories. 

1. Handling the dairy herd. The prime requisites for success in the 
handling of any class of livestock are intelligence, kindness, 
patience, and gentleness. The dairy cow responds to kind treatment 
by increasing her production. 

Generally speaking, dairy animals, ivith the exception of the hull, 
are not dangerous. Occasionally a cow with a small calf may be 
dangerous to strangers due to her natural instinct to protect her 
young. If you are kind and gentle to animals, however, you will 
soon gain their confidence. 


On many farms the cows are milked with machines and most of them are "stripped" by hand. 
Clean milk is produced with clean utensils, from clean cows, in clean barns. 

One of your jobs may be to weigh the milk 
from each cow at each milking and record the 
weight on the wall chart. However, not all 
farmers keep an accurate record of the pro- 
duction of each cow. 

Your duties in dealing with the 
herd may consist of driving up the 
cows from the pasture if they are 
not at the barn, letting them in the 
barn for milking, and turning them 
out to pasture after they have been 

Now these are relatively simple 
jobs; after the dairy herd is ac- 
quainted with you, they will be 
easy to do. Here are a few things 
to keep in mind when handling the 

a. Animals are largely creatures 
of habit. They are accustomed 
to going in the same barn door 
and standing in the same stall. 
Do not attempt to change these 
habits unless it is absolutely necessary. 

Cows normally are leisurely. If you use a horse to drive them, 
allow them to walk. Never send a dog after milk cows unless he 
has been trained to drive them slowly. Rough treatment 
reduces milk production. 

Animals are curious. They are apt to go through any open gate 
either out of curiosity or in search of feed. You will save 
yourself time and trouble by always closing gates and doors 
behind you. 

Animals expect direction. When driving animals in strange 
places don't expect them to know where you want them to go. 
You must indicate by your actions and your voice what you 
expect them to do. 

e. It is wise to be cautious of the bull. Never handle the bull. 
Every year a number of farmers are seriously injured or killed 
by so-called "gentle" bulls. Never go into the bull pen when 
the bull is there. Some farmers may ridicule you ; neverthe- 
less, you should remember that the bull is probably the most 
dangerous animal on the farm and that very often it is the 
"gentle" bull that does the most damage. 

f. All animals respond to kind treatment; still you must be firm 
enough to remain their master. 

g. Contented cows are the best producers. The contented dairy 
herd shows its appreciation by higher milk production. 

Feeding the dairy herd. Feeding practices vary from farm to 
farm. Therefore, be sure that you understand the farmer's instruc- 


Page 18 

tions and carry them out very carefully. As you gain experience, 
and especially if you study livestock bulletins and magazines, you 
will learn satisfactory feeding practices. Remember first of all, 
however, that you are working for the farmer and you must fol- 
low his instructions. If you think some change should be made, 
ask the farmer about it. 

These are a few things to keep in mind about feeding dairy cattle: 

a. Cows are fed roughages — hay, pasture, and silage — and con- 
centrates — grains and mill feeds. The digestive system of the 
cow enables her to make good use of rough feeds. 

b. Cows should be fed regularly. They cannot be fed as a coal 
stoker — enough at one feeding to last them several days. 

c. Cows should be fed according to their production. If one cow 
produces twice as much milk as another, she deserves extra 

d. A constant supply of clean, fresh water is a necessity. Many 
cows produce 50 pounds of milk a day — that requires approxi- 
mately six gallons of water just for milk production. 

e. Salt should be available to cows at all times; it is an essential 
part of their diet. 

3. Milking. If you are on a dairy farm, it is very likely that you will 
be expected to help with the milking. You may expect either to 
learn to milk by hand or to take care of the milking machine. 
The only way you can learn to milk is by practice, and that may 
be a rather long and trying procedure — for the cows as well as 
you. Keep in mind that milking involves more than simply draw- 

Holstein cows on pasture. This farmstead, with its large dairy barn and twin silos, has 
room for a large dairy herd. You may be asked to drive the cows to the barn each evening 

and morning. 

Page 19 

ing milk from a cow. The final product must be clean and safe 
for human consumption. Here again, practice, patience, and the 
ability to take and follow instructions are highly important. 

4. Caring for the milk. Milk is a very perishable product. Since 
it sours rapidly under certain conditions, it must be strained and 
cooled immediately after milking. All parts and equipment that 
come in contact with the milk must be washed in hot water after 
each use. Milk produced on the farm tonight will not be in the 
consumer's icebox for at least 36 hours. If it is to arrive in a 
pure and wholesome condition, it must be kept clean and cool. 
Have you ever thought of how much effort is involved in pro- 
ducing the milk you drink each day ? A summer on the farm will 
give you a greater appreciation of the farmer's job. Clean cows, 
workers, barns, and equipment are essential in producing a clean 

5. Cleaning the barn. To produce a clean product, it is essential 
to clean out the milking q-uarters regularly. Manure and litter 
must be removed from the barn and, in most instances, loaded on 
the manure spreader and hauled to the field. This is some of the 
heavier and dirtier work you may have to do in connection with 
dairying. Farms producing for a whole milk market usually have 
to pass rather rigid inspections. The condition of the barn 
receives a lot of attention from the inspector. 

High Production Is Your Challenge 

Let us consider the problems of the dairy farmer. Dairying is his 
means of obtaining a livelihood. The sale of dairy products — whole milk 
or butterfat — is his major source of income. His main efforts are bent 
toward increasing the income from his herd. Even the crops he pro- 
duces are used as raw material for the dairy cow in producing milk. The 
cow is often looked on as a machine which converts feeds, otherwise 
inedible for human beings, to highly nutritious foodstuffs for them. 

The average dairy farmer has a rather large investment in bams, 
equipment, and cows. At the present time a dairy cow costs over one 
hundred and fifty dollars, and it is very easy to reduce the value of a 
cow as a milk producer through poor care and management. 

Your challenge, in connection with the dairy herd, should be to try to 
obtain the highest possible production per cow under the supervision of 
the farmer. 

Page 20 


Livestock -Care and Handling of 

Horses, Swine, Sheep, Poultry, 

and Beef Cattle 

Think of Animals as Friends 

Your responsibilities in connection with dairy cattle were discussed 
at length in the preceding unit. However, almost every farm has not just 
one kind of livestock but several. Consequently you will have to be pre- 
pared to become, to some extent, a jack-of -all-trades. Regardless of the 
class of livestock, the successful herdsman must possess the qualities of 
gentleness, kindness, firmness, and, above all, patience. The characteristics 
essential for success in handling livestock, it is interesting to note, are 
the same as those possessed by persons who make the most friends and 
get along best in their associations ivith other people. 

It will be possible to touch only briefly on each class of livestock. 
Most of your education in handling livestock will have to be acquired out 
on the farm. It is only possible here to depict for you what you may be 
expected to do and to offer some suggestions which will help you orient 
yourself on the farm more rapidly. 

Caring For and Handling Horses 

Illinois agriculture has become highly mechanized. In fact, in parts 
of the state there are farm boys who have never handled horses. How- 
ever, the majority of farmers still have at least one team of horses which 
they use for certain types of work. 

These are some things you maj- be asked to do with horses: 

1. Feed and groom them. 

2. Harness them. 

3. Hitch them together and to equipment. 

4. Drive them and operate simple horse-drawn equipment. 

5. Unhitch and unharness them. 

Horses generally are kept on the farm as a source of power. Occa- 
sionally a farmer keeps a riding horse for use in caring for other livestock 
or for pleasure, but most of your experience will be with draft horses, 
which furnish the power for doing numerous jobs about the farm. 

WTiile horses are considered quite intelligent animals, it is well to 
remember that their value depends to a high degree on their past training 
and response to certain signals. Usually these signals are vocal or given 
by exerting pressure on the reins or lines. For the most part, the horse 
depends on the driver to show him what he should do. If horses are 
handled by the same man for a period of time they become accustomed 
to that driver and may not respond readily to a new driver. Remember 

Page 21 

How would you like to groom, feed, water, 

harness, and drive this powerful team of 


that when you first take over the 
team you are as new to the horses 
as they are to you, and your inex- 
perience really works a double hard- 
ship on the horses. 

It is a pleasure to handle well- 
trained, gentle horses and you 
should not attempt to handle any 
other kind until you have had con- 
siderable experience. It is very 
seldom that one finds a vicious or 
mean horse. Although there may 
be some that have a bad habit of 
biting or kicking, they are excep- 
tions. This is one rule that you 
must always observe in working with horses or with any class of livestock : 
Ahvays warn a horse or other anirrwl when you approach him. Speak to 
him as you draw near and before you touch him. If you do not, his natural 
reaction may be to kick in surprise when you touch him. If we were as 
inconsiderate in our treatment of other people as we often are in the treat- 
ment of animals, the world would be a very unpleasant place in which to live. 
Horses must be fed and watered regularly, yet they must not be over- 
fed, or watered when they are hot from heavy work. If you feed the 
horse be sure to follow exactly the instructions given by the farmer. 
Grooming is a cleaning procedure for horses and is a task likely to be 
assigned to you. A horse can neither give himself a bath nor curry 
(brush) his hair; yet, he is often in places which cause him to get very 
dirty. He appreciates being groomed, for like other farm animals, he is 
definitely handicapped when it comes to grooming himself. 

You cannot learn to handle horses by reading about them. Here, too, 
experience is by far the best teacher. Remember there are numerous 
times when the horse might like to explain something to you, but unfor- 
tunately he can't talk. He is at your mercy, so treat him patiently and 
with kindness and understanding. 

Here are a few^ terms which you should learn in connection with 
horses : 

Gelding — a castrated or desexed male horse kept for draft or for 

riding purposes. 
Mare — a female horse. 
Foal — a nursing colt. 
Colt — the young of the mare. 

Feeding and Care of Swine 

"Swine" is a term which includes all kinds and classes of pigs and 
hogs. We often hear the expression "dirty as a pig," but do you know that 
the pig is naturally one of the cleanest of the farm animals? He is the 
only farm animal who will not wilfully foul his own quarters; even little 

Page 22 

pigs only a few days old make their toilet away from their sleeping quar- 
ters. Pigs are often referred to as "mortgage lifters" because over a long 
period of time they have been one of the most profitable classes of live- 
stock for farmers who care for them properly. Now the government has 
asked farmers to materially increase pork production. Along with dairy 
products and poultry, pork is one of the war commodities. You should be 
familiar with the following terms in dealing with swine : 

Farrow (verb) — to give birth to young. 

Gilt — a female pig before farrowing her first litter. 

Sow — a female hog after farrowing a litter, usually over one year 

Boar — a male hog. 

Barrow — a castrated or desexed male pig fattened for market pur- 

Pi& — young of the swine. Many farmers use the term pig to include 
all swine up to their marketing age. 

Hog — the difference between a hog and pig is mainly one of size or 

Litter — the young of a sow produced at one farrowing, usually from 
5 to 12 in number. 

Castration — the operation for removing the testicles or reproductive 
organs of the male. Desexed male animals fatten more rapidly 
and produce higher-quality meat than do males. 

Shote (also shoat) — a pig that is being raised or fattened for market, 
usually weighing less than 150 pounds. 

Your responsibilities in connection with hog production may include 
one or all of the following: 

1. Feeding and watering the fattening pigs 

2. Helping to vaccinate and castrate pigs 

3. Feeding and caring for sows and litters 

Feeding fattening pigs is one of the simplest feeding tasks on the 
farm. There is danger of overfeed- 

ing most classes of livestock but not 
the pig. The farmer wants the pig 
to gain weight rapidly, so the pig's 
chief function is to "make a hog of 

The pig's digestive system is 
not adapted to the digestion of a lot 
of rough feed. Consequently his 
ration is made up chiefly of farm 
grains and mill feeds. 

Feeding practices for hogs 
vary widely but generally one of 
two methods is used. Either they 
are fed twice daily, morning and 

Page 23 

With a self-feeder of this type pigs get all they 

want to eat, and enough feed can be put in 

at one time to last several days. 

These ewes and Iambs are getting both feed and water from the pasture, and so do not need 
much attention during the summer months. 

evening, or they are self-fed. The latter means that a large quantity of 
feed is made available to the hogs at all times — a help-yourself or cafeteria 
plan. You will have to follow the instructions of the farmer you work 
for and use his system of feeding; he usually has reasons for his particu- 
lar method. Be sure the hogs have plenty of water. They cannot stand 
heat. If fat hogs are excited or hurried in hot weather, some of them 
may die. 

You may be asked to catch or hold pigs while they are being castrated 
or vaccinated. These operations may be performed by the farmer or he 
may hire a veterinarian to do them. In either case you may be called upon 
to help. 

Pigs are usually farrowed, or born in the fall or spring. However, it 
is not unusual for farmers to raise summer litters. You may be asked to 
help take care of sows and their pigs. If so, follow the farmer's feeding 
instructions carefully. Take care not to disturb the sow unduly. Many 
sows are cross when they have small pigs, and almost any sow may be 
dangerous if anything is done to cause one of the pigs to squeal. Another 
precaution to practice when working around livestock is to leave the farm 
dog behind or he may endanger your own position. Dogs are natural 
enemies to most farm animals, and their presence will excite any animal 
which has young. Boars (male hogs) are sometimes mean or vicious; be 
cautious when dealing with them. 

Of all farm animals, the pig will try your patience more than any 
other, especially if you try to drive him into a new place. The easiest way 
to get a pig to go where you want him to is to let him make his own de- 
cision to go there. A pig does not like to be forced anywhere. He may 

Page 24 

stand with his head in a door for several minutes before going in, but if 
you try to push him through he will invariably back out. It is this char- 
acteristic that undoubtedly has given rise to the expression "pig-headed." 

Feeding and Caring for Sheep 

Vocabulary : 

Ewe — a female sheep. 

Ram — a male sheep, often referred to as the "buck." 
Lamb — a young sheep under one year old. 
Wether — a desexed or castrated male sheep. 
Feeders — sheep or lambs purchased to be fed and fattened for 

The sheep enterprise is of relatively minor importance on most Illinois 
farms. A great many farmers keep no sheep at all. Feeder sheep or 
lambs are usually fed during the fall and winter months, so probably your 
work with sheep will be only with the breeding flock and the lambs pro- 
duced on the farm. 

During the summer months sheep require very little attention. The 
breeding flock needs nothing but pasture, plenty of clean, fresh water, and 

Growing chicks need feed, water, shade, and sheher. These self-feeders have a roof which keeps 
the feed dry, and the brooder house is equipped with a stove for cool weather. 

Page 25 

fill !1^ 

This is a well-equipped hen house, as indicated by the clean, dry 

litter, self-feeders, and ample nest space. Eggs should be gathered 

several times each day in hot weather. 

salt. On some farms the lambs are fed grain to fatten them for marketing 
which, in Illinois, is usually between June and October. 

In working with sheep you should remember that they are timid and 
are the most gregarious of all farm animals, that is, they go in flocks or 
stay together. It is very unusual to find one or two sheep very far from 
the rest of the flock. 

Caring for the Poultry 

Vocabulary : 

Pullet — a female chicken under a year old. _.■ 

Hen — a female chicken over a year old. 

Cockerel — a male chicken under a year old. 

Rooster — a male chicken over a year old. 

Baby chicks — chickens a few days old purchased by the farmer 

to be raised for market or kept as laying hens. 
Broiler — a chicken usually from 8 to 12 weeks old, produced for 

market and weighing 2 to 4 pounds. 

Practically every farmer keeps some poultry. The size of his enter- 
prise will vary from less than one hundred hens up to several hundred, 
and the number of chickens raised may vary even more. Caring for the 
poultry is usually considered as lighter farm work and very often the 
farmer's wife or younger children are given this responsibility. City girls 
may easily learn to care for poultry. Responsibilities in caring for the 
poultry may include the following: 

1. Feeding and watering the laying flock. 

2. Feeding and watering the baby chicks. 

3. Gathering eggs. 

4. Cleaning the poultry house. 

Page 26 

The digestive system of the chicken, like that of the hog, is limited 
in the amount of roughage it can utilize. Chickens cannot eat much rough 
feed and therefore spend a rather large portion of their time at the 
feeder. The most common method of feeding poultry is to keep feed in 
front of them constantly. If you are given the task of caring for the 
poultry, your most important responsibility will be to see that the flock 
has feed and water before it at all times. This applies to both old and 
young chickens. The other daily chore connected with poultry is that of 
gathering the eggs. This is done at least once a day, and in hot weather 
it is advisable to gather them several times each day because they deteri- 
orate so rapidly at high temperatures. 

The poultry house or houses will be cleaned regularly or irregularly 
depending on how the farmer cares for his flock. Some farmers clean the 
houses as often as once a week ; others may clean them only once or twice 
during the summer. Cleaning involves removal of the straw, or litter, and 
droppings, and replacing them with clean litter. (In this case, "litter" is 
used in the sense of bedding for animals.) 

As in the case of heavy-producing dairy cattle, the high-producing 
laying hen is a sensitive, highly developed, nervous individual. When 
working with poultry you should work quietly so as to avoid unduly fright- 
ening or disturbing the flock. 

Beef cattle on full feed require large quantities of feed and water. These steers are fed grain 

twice each day, the grain being scooped from the wagon into the troughs. The hay is fed in 

mangers inside the barn where the hay is stored. 

Page 27 

Caring for Beef Cattle 

For a vocabulary of beef -cattle terms, review the one for dairy cattle. 
By adding the follov^ing two terms, your beginning vocabulary will be 
reasonably complete: 

Steer — a desexed or castrated male animal to be fed and marketed 
as beef. 

Feeders — beef animals (male or female) which are fattened for the 

As in the case of sheep, the beef cattle may be divided into two cate- 
gories — the breeding herd and the feeders. The breeding herd requires 
little attention during the summer months. Ordinarily the cows receive 
only the feed from the pasture on which they run. The calves may be fed 
some grain to help fatten them while they still are being nursed by the 

Feeder cattle may be handled in a variety of ways. They may be fed 
in drylot or on pasture. They may be fed heavily on grain, or heavily on 
rough feeds and light on grain. Feeders may vary in age from calves to 
two year olds, and they may be marketed at almost any time of year. 


When you stop and think that books have been written about each of 
the classes of livestock mentioned, you can realize how limited is the scope 
of the material presented here. Very little has been said about the various 
breeds, but you will doubtless learn to know some of them after being on 
the farm for a while. The methods of handling livestock vary tremendously 
from farm to farm so we can give you no hard and fast rules to follow. 
Remember : you are going to be working for and ivith the farmer. To be 
successful, you must be able to take and follow his instructions. 

There are a number of things which all farm workers should realize. 
First of all, the farmer produces livestock because he expects to realize 
a profit from them. Just as you expect to receive a wage from the farmer 
for your work, the farmer expects to receive his wage in the form of profits 
from his livestock. The skill with which you do your work will determine 
how much you are worth to the farmer. 

The diff'erent classes of livestock are raised for specific purposes, the 
dairy cow to produce milk, beef cattle and hogs to produce meat, sheep to 
produce wool and meat, poultry to produce eggs and meat, and horses to 
furnish power. In feeding, caring for, and managing the livestock, it is 
up to you to do all the things that will enable them to perform their par- 
ticular functions most eificiently. 

Finally, you must recognize the limitations of animals. They cannot 
talk, they cannot reason, and their actions are largely the result of train- 
ing and habit. Be patient, be careful, be kind, and be gentle, and you 
will probably enjoy working with livestock. If you enjoy your work, you 
will be more successful at it. 

Page 28 


Crop Production-Your 

Crop Production Is Basic to All Agriculture 

Many farmers sell no grains but market only livestock or livestock 
products, which they have produced by using their grain as feed. 

Clothing is made of fiber that is obtained either directly from plants, 
or indirectly from them through livestock, as in the case of wool. A num- 
ber of crops, including fruits and vegetables, are consumed by man without 
being processed, while most of the grain crops (bread, cornmeal, and 
cereals are important exceptions) are first converted into meat or live- 
stock products before being consumed by people. 

Thus, it is evident that total agricultural production is dependent on 
crop production. 

Crops Raised on the Farm 

When you go to work on a farm, your employer is very likely to as- 
sume that you know the common crops raised on farms and that you can 
identify them. Some knowledge of the appearance and uses of the major 
farm crops will be an advantage to you. 

Corn. Corn is the most important crop in Illinois agriculture. It is 
grown on practically every farm in the state and is the major feed for 
livestock. Over 85 percent of the total corn crop is fed to livestock. A 
small percentage of the crop is made into breakfast cereals, corn starch, 
corn syrup, and other products. Not only is corn high in nutritive value, 

Can You Identify These Grains When You See Them Growing in the Field? 

Heads ot oats 

Heads of barley 

Heads of wheat 

but it also produces a larger amount of feed per acre than any other crop. 
On many farms it is raised as a cash crop; that is, it is sold rather than 
fed on the farm where it is produced. 

You should get in the habit of differentiating between the terms food 
and feed. Products fed to livestock are designated as feeds or feedstuff s. 
Products consumed by people are referred to as foods or foodstuffs. 

Oats. Oats are a small-grain crop used almost exclusively for feed. 
As a grain crop oats have been declining in importance in Illinois, although 
some oats are raised on most farms. They are more important in the 
northern than in the southern and central parts of the state. 

Barley. Barley is a small-grain crop grown for feed and also as a 
cash crop to be sold on the market. Barley, like oats, does best in a cool 
climate and is grown chiefly in the northern third of the state. 

Wheat. Wheat is a small-grain crop grown, to some extent, in all 
parts of the state and is a major crop in the southwestern section. The 
primary use of wheat in normal times, unlike the other grains, is as food 
for human beings. It is therefore grown almost exclusively as a cash 
crop. At the present time there is a surplus of wheat in the United States ; 
consequently the price is low and farmers are using some of it as feed 
for livestock. 

Soybeans. The soybean is the newest of the important farm crops 
in Illinois. It is an extremely important crop in the east central cash 
grain area. The chief value of the soybean is in the oil contained in the 
seed, which is used as a food, for making soap, and in paints. The meal 
which remains when the oil is removed is used primarily for feeding live- 
stock, while a small proportion is used for making plastics. Since the be- 
ginning of the war the United States has been unable to import normal 
quantities of oils; consequently the soybean has been classed as a war 
crop. Some soybeans are produced in all sections of the state, and a 
minor portion of the crop is harvested for hay. The 1942 production of 
soybeans was almost twice as large as in any previous year. 

Soybeans may be planted solid with a grain drill and not cultivated, or they may 
be planted in rows and cultivated with a corn or bean cultivator. 

Ha> is put in "windrows'" with a side-delivery rake. You will like this job. 

Hay. All classes of livestock, except poultry and hogs, consume con- 
siderable amounts of roughages. Hay is a roughage. It is the entire plant, 
cut before ripe, and dried or cured to be used as feed. Alfalfa, red clover, 
and timothy are a few of the numerous crops used for hay. 

Straw. People inexperienced in farming often fail to differentiate 
between hay and straw. Straw is a by-product of grain production. It 
consists of the leaves and stems of the ripe or mature plant after the 
removal of the grain by threshing. Straw is sometimes fed ; its chief use, 
however, is as litter, or bedding, for livestock. 

Pasture. Pasture crops are green, growing plants which the live- 
stock eat in the field. A wide variety of crops is used for pasture purposes. 
The word pasture refers to the area grazed by livestock. 

Vegetable and Fruit Crops. Most farmers raise some fruits and a 
garden for home use. In certain areas such crops are the only or the 
major source of income. A wide variety of crops is included in this group, 
and all of them are used as human food. 

Your Jobs in Crop Production 

Crop production operations may be divided into four general classes: 

(1) seedbed preparation, (2) plant- 
ing or seeding, (3) cultivating, and 
(4) harvesting. Each of these 
operations will be discussed briefly. 

Seedbed Preparation. The soil 
is the home of the plant. Together 
with air and water it provides the 
complete food supply used by the 
plant in manufacturing and pro- 
ducing its seeds. Seed production 
is simply nature's way of produc- 
ing plants. The farmer's task. 

Page 31 

Some farmers have a hay loader, which re- 
duces the work of putting up hay. You can 
learn to drive the tractor or place the hay on 
the wagon. 

A modern plow of this type will turn ten to fifteen acres a day. 

then, is to aid nature in providing the most favorable conditions for the 
growth of the plant. The first step in this process is to provide the infant 
plant with a good bed in which to grow. 

There are generally three steps in preparing the seedbed, namely, 
plowing, disking, and harrowing. Plowing, which involves a turning over 
of the soil, is one of the first steps in seedbed preparation and is the opera- 
tion requiring the most time and power. Disking digs up the soil. The 
land may be disked both before and after plowing. Harrowing pulverizes 
and smooths the soil. Disking and harrowing are both used as finishing 
processes in seedbed preparation. They help to kill weeds, one of the 
farmer's greatest enemies, and pulverize and level the land prior to 

Each of these operations may be done either with horses or with a 
tractor, and you may be asked to do some of this work. 

Planting. In planting farm crops, the seed may be broadcast, it may 
be drilled, or it may be checked. Seed which is broadcast is distributed 
rather evenly over the ground but is not in rows. The seed is then cov- 
ered by harrowing or disking, which might be considered as putting the 
finishing touches on the 

seeding job. 

Grain that is drilled is 
planted in rows. The rows 
may be anywhere from a 
few inches to over three 
feet apart. The drill drops 
and covers the seed in the 
same operation. 

Page 32 

A track-type tractor pulling a disc harrow and a spike- 
tooth harrow to firm and smooth the seedbed for crops. 

This farmer is using a two-row horse-drawn 

machine for planting corn. Fifteen to 20 acres 

a day can be planted in this way. 

Corn is the only major crop 
in Illinois which is checked. Check- 
rowing means planting the crop so 
that it is in rows in both directions 
and can be cultivated both length- 
wise and crosswise. 

Cultivation. After the crop 
has been planted and starts to 
grow, it must be protected from 
some of its enemies. Weeds are 
the greatest enemies to farm crops, 
and cultivation is one means used to fight them. Any process which 
destroys weeds by disturbing their root systems as a result of turning 
over the soil is known as cultivation. Although the major objective of 
cultivation is weed control, it also pulverizes and loosens the soil. 

Cultivation therefore takes forms varying from hand hoeing to cul- 
tivating com with a four-row tractor cultivator. The following horse- or 
tractor-drawn implements are commonly used for the cultivation of farm 
crops: harrows, rotary hoes, and various types of cultivators. 

The small-grain crops are normally not cultivated. They are broad- 
cast or drilled in early spring and are harvested before weeds become a 
serious problem. The major cultivated crops in Illinods are corn and 

Before the complete mechanization of agriculture, cultivating corn 
with a two-horse cultivator was one of the first field jobs farm boys learned 
to do. You may be expected to cultivate corn with either tractor- or 
horse-drawn equipment and you should be careful to get the weeds but 
not to plow out or cover up any of the com plants. 

Harvesting. Here is a true test of your physical stamina and ability 
to "take it." Harvesting operations on the farm involve some of the 
heaviest physical labor you will encounter. 

Much corn is now cultivated with motor cultivators. If you 

should operate such a machine, the farmer will expect you to 

be careful not to plow out or cover up the small corn plants. 

Page 33 

Small grains and soybeans are harvested in one of two ways. Either 
the crop is combined (pronounced kom' bifid), which includes cutting and 
threshing in one operation, or it is cut with a binder, put in shocks to dry, 
and finally hauled to a threshing machine to be threshed. Shocks are the 
piles of upright sheaves of grain you perhaps have seen on farm land dur- 
ing a drive through the country. Most of the wheat and soybeans grown 
are combined. However, in livestock areas, more of the small grain is 
threshed because the farmers need the straw. You will probably be on 
the farm during small-grain harvest. In that case you may be asked to 

This farmer is cutting his wheat 
with a tractor binder. The bundles 
are dropped in piles from the car- 
rier for the convenience of the 

Shocking wheat is hard work 
and the weather is likely to 
be hot. Try to set the bundles 
up so that the shocks will 

Wheat bundles are 
pitched on basket 
racks by hand. On 
some farms one 
person pitches the 
bundles while the 
other "loads" them 
on the rack. 

Rack wagons are being used to haul wheat from 
the shocks to the threshing machine. The grain 
is delivered into a box wagon, and the straw is 
blown through the long tube onto the straw stack. 
If a combine is used (see page 42) it replaces 
both the binder and the threshing machine. 

, .- f^n > 'Iji 



Mi^i.^f6*< -% 


1 '^ i fTiypaa'jjhJBM 


Page 34 

shock grain, to pitch bundles, or to haul threshed grain away from the 

Corn may be harvested in one of several ways, including cutting it 
with a corn binder and shocking it for shredding later, or picking it by 
hand or machine from the standing stalk. 

Hay harvest requires a great amount of physical exertion. The 
hay may be cut, cured, and put in the barn loose, or it may be baled out of 
the field. In either instance, a considerable amount of hand labor in hot 
weather is necessary. 

Harvest Dangers. There are a number of precautions which you 
should observe when helping to harvest crops. 

First of all, do not overwork yourself. Hay and small-grain harvest 
occurs during the hottest part of the summer. Take your time. Watch 
the experienced hands so you may develop methods of work that re- 
quire the least exertion. Do not get too hot. Heat prostration may keep 
you from working during the rest of the summer and may even cause 
permanent injury. By developing skill at the job, you can gradually in- 
crease the amount of work you can do in hot weather. 

You may be asked to care for and operate various machines. While 
machine operation may require less physical labor than other harvest jobs, 
it carries with it greater responsibility. A combine, a tractor, or a binder 
is a complicated machine and represents a large investment on the part of 
the farmer. If you are given the responsibility of operating machines, be 
sure to follow instructions carefully. If instructions are not complete, or 
you do not understand them, do not hesitate to ask questions. 

Finally, you must always keep in mind the dangers in connection with 
the operation of machinery, particularly power-driven machines. Every 
year thousands of farmers and farm workers are injured or killed when 
working around such machines. It is not that the machines are dangerous, 
hut that the workers endanger themselves as a result of carelessness, 
fatigue, or neglect. More will be said about some of the dangers in con- 
nection with farm work in Part 9. 

Page 35 


Farm Equipment and Buildings 

Learn to Identify 

During the past two decades Illinois agriculture has become highly 
mechanized. To be successful, a farmer must know how to use a wide 
variety of equipment and machinery, as well as to perform many diverse 
jobs. The use of much of this equipment is so commonplace to the farmer 
that he may take it for granted that everyone is as familiar with its ap- 
pearance and use as he is. Although you may already know a rather large 
number of pieces of equipment there are some you may be asked to op- 
erate that will be entirely new to you. It would be well for you to learn 
now to identify the various buildings and items of equipment on a farm 
and to know for what purposes they are used. That knowledge, together 

You can increase your usefulness by learning the names of these tools and their purposes. 
They are identified as follows: 1, barn broom; 2, long handle shovel; 3, hoe; 4, garden rake; 
5, pitch fork; 6, scythe; 7, shovel; 8, spade; 9, saw; 10, ax; 11, hatchet; and 12, hammer. 

Page 36- 

The most successful hog producers use movable hog houses so that the 
pigs may be kept on clean pastures. 

with supervision from the farmer, will help you to master their use much 
more readily. 

For convenience in presenting the material, the items have been 
divided into three general groups : small tools, buildings and their equip- 
ment, and miscellaneous equipment. 

The items described here fall far short of making up a complete list, 
but they are the most common ones found on the majority of farms. The 
amount of equipment on individual farms varies immensely, depending 
upon the type of farming done and the interest of the farmer. Some 
farmers have a completely equipped farm shop in which they are able to 
do practically all of their own mechanical work ; others have nothing more 
than a few small tools. 

Small Tools 

You have no doubt used a number of the tools shown on page 36. Make 
it a special point to learn to identifj^ those which are new to you and to 
learn their use. If some of the tools are available to you at home, you 
may want to practice using them. 

You can help save time — the factor that is so vital in this war emer- 
gency — by keeping things in their proper places and seeing that they are 
always in good condition. Then no time will be lost looking for misplaced 
items, or in using tools hiade ineffective by careless handling. 

Learn where every small tool 

The interior of a barn showing stanchions for 

dairy cows. The cows must be fastened in the 

stanchions before each milking and released 

again afterwards. 

is expected to be kept. When not 
in use, see that it is in that place. 
Similarly, when you finish using a 
piece of equipment, put it where it 
belongs so that you and everyone 
else on the farm will know where 
to find it when it is next wanted. 

Do not use tools for purposes 
other than the ones they are in- 
tended to serve. The hatchet and 

Page 37 

The milk is poured through the strainer into the cream separator, 
which sends the cream into the crock and the skimmed milk into 
the can. All milk equipment must be kept very clean by thor- 
ough washing and sterilizing. 

ax should not be used to cut nails or wire, and handles of the various tools 
should not be used as prying rods. Tools are usually broken or ruined by 
being incorrectly used, or by being used for something for which they 
were not intended. 

When you are through using a tool, be sure that it is in good condition 
before putting it away. Make sure the spade is properly cleaned, dried, 
and oiled. Each tool should be in ideal condition for the next time it is 

Finally, before using any equipment which is new to you, ask the 
farmer for instructions in regard to using and caring for it. 

Buildings and Equipment 

The farmer refers to his buildings and parts of them in his everyday 
language, and may very likely take for granted that you know to what 
he is referring. You should therefore be familiar with the more common 
farm buildings and the equipment which is ordinarily a part of them. 

You will im- 
mediately see that 
the names of most 
farm buildings de- 
note their use. How- 
ever, don't be fooled 
by the name "milk 
house." It is not 
the building where 
the cows are milked 
but rather the build- 
ing in which the milk 
is cooled and kept. 

P.\GE 38 

The farm machinery will be housed in a machine shed when not 
in use, unless the farmer is careless. 

A well-organized farmstead — house, garage, windmill, machine 
shed, corn crib, and barn. 

You cannot always identify a farm building by any one character- 
istic. The buildings vary tremendously in size, shape, color, and the ma- 
terials of which they are constructed. The above illustration will give you 
a general idea of the common farm buildings, but you will of course have 
to become personally acquainted with the buildings on the farm where 

you work. 

Miscellaneous Equipment 

In addition to the small tools and the buildings pictured, there are 
numerous other items of equipment on many farms. Some of the more 
common of them, such as stanchions, cream separator, milking machine, 
self-feeder, and individual hog houses, are shown in earlier pictures. 

During your stay on the farm you will be expected to use or operate 
a number of these pieces of equipment. Some of them are extremely 
simple ; others are somewhat complicated. The general suggestions given 
for the use of small tools apply here — make it a rule to follow instructions 
or to ask for information when in doubt. 

Your Opportunities and Responsibilities 

While recognizing the opportunities that use of the tools, equipment, 
and buildings of a farm offer you for developing a variety of manipulative 
skills and practical, specialized knowledge, do not overlook the responsi- 
bilities that you must accept with them. 

Take care of the tools and equipment you use; they are especially 
precious items now, when many of them would be very difficult to replace. 
Breakage may cause serious delays, loss of time, and reduced production. 

When you use a new tool or piece of equipment try to find our for what 
it is used, hoiv it is used, and ivhy it is used in that manner. It is essen- 
tial that you learn the what and hoiv. Learning ivhij clarifies the ivhat 
and hoiv so much that you, as a conscientious worker, should never pass 
up the opportunity to add this to your knowledge. Of course you can find 
out a great deal for yourself through experience but experience is often a 
slow teacher. Supplement and add to your experience by looking to your 
employer or fellow workmen for advice and supervision, and don't be 
afraid to ask for that assistance. You should not be ashamed because 
you do not know certain things; you should be ashamed only if you do 
not learn them when you have the opportunity. 

Page 39 



The final step in seed 
bed preparation. This 
five-section harrow is 
leaving the land in good 
condition for planting. 

Operating Farm Machinery- 
Your Responsibilities 

Kinds of Farm Machinery 

In the previous unit, farm buildings, small tools, and equipment were 
discussed. In defining farm machinery and farm equipment, it is difficult 
to draw a distinct dividing line between the two. However, for the most 
part, the large items of machinery which are used in field operations are 
included under farm machinery. 

Since World War I agriculture has become highly mechanized ; in fact 
so much so that many farmers keep no horses but rely solely on mechanical 
power. If you perform any of the field operations, you will probably be 
handling some of the farm machinery. 

Wheat is being drilled here with a tractor drill. Note the straight 
marker track by which the farmer is steering the tractor. 

Page 40 

«u .«aMM>jqe&AJK»agl£<><»s4«e£rfgHi^^: 


A large area of soybeans (drilled solid) can be cultivated in one 
day with three rotary hoes and a tractor. 

Farm machines vary from the most elementary types to some that 
are extremely complicated, such as combines and com pickers. Many of 
these machines represent large investments. Many of them can be seri- 
ously damaged by improper care and handling. Many require skilled and 
experienced operators. The operation of others is relatively simple and 
can be mastered in a short time. Most farm machines must be properly 
adjusted if they are to operate effectively. 

You can learn to care for and operate these machines only by ex- 
perience. If you have some mechanical ability and experience, it will prove 
valuable. Reading about machines will not qualify you to operate them, 
but it will enable you to identify them and to know the purposes for which 
they are used. You will recall that in the unit on crop production, crop 
operations were grouped into four categories : seedbed preparation, plant- 
ing, cultivating, and harvesting. While farm machinery is not classified 

Page 41 

A horse-drawn cultivator is used on some farms for cultivating corn. This is a 
two-row machine, but you may get your start on a one-row outfit. 

r ■■ I 

Cutting wheat with a combine saves a lot of labor. The combine 

replaces both the binder and the threshing machine. The grain 

is collected in the tank, to be dumped into a wagon or a truck, 

and the straw falls on the ground. 

on just that same basis, it is well to keep this use classification in mind 
when studying the machinery pictures. 

Farm Machinery and Wartime Production 

Mechanization of Illinois farms has greatly reduced their need for 
man labor. Since manpower may eventually determine the outcome of 
the war, you can readily appreciate the importance of mechanical equip- 
ment in maintaining agricultural production. 

Nevertheless, farm machines are being rationed. Only 20 percent 
as much new machinery as farmers purchased in 1941 will be available to 
them in 1943. A farmer must obtain a permit from his rationing board 
before he can buy certain new machines. It may be somewhat difficult 
to obtain repair parts. This makes it extremely important for every 
farmer to take the very best possible care of all his machinery. 

The field silage-cutter, shown below, delivers the chopped corn 

into the wagon. This is much easier than loading bundles onto 

wagons and hauling them to a stationary cutter. 

Page 42 

Scooping oats on the sunny side of 
the barn will warm you up. You 
may also get a blistered back if you 
leave your shirt off too long at one 
time before you get a good tan. 

Now just what are your responsibilities if you are asked to operate 
the machines? 

1. Be sure the machine is properly adjusted; get the farmer to help 
you in adjusting it. 

2. Do not attempt to learn by experimenting with the machine. You 
risk serious injury to yourself and damage to the machine if you 
make a mistake. 

3. Obtain complete instructions concerning the operation of the 
machine. If you want to learn, ask questions, and do not hesi- 
tate to request that someone supervise your work until you are 
confident you can perform it yourself. It is much safer to expose 
your lack of knowledge than to hide it and make a costly error. 

4. Always observe all precautions and safety rules in operating farm 

Here is a chance for you to get some valuable mechanical experience. 
Make the most of this opportunity, but keep in mind that first and fore- 
most your job is to help the farmer produce food and feed. Everything 
you do must help him in that effort. 

A grain elevator will put the oats 

in the granary as fast as two men 

can scoop. This farmer won't be 

too tired to enjoy his dinner. 

Page 43 


Special Types of Work and 
Odd Jobs on the Farm 

Fruit, Vegetables, and Canning Crops 

The discussion thus far has assumed that you will live and work on 
either grain or livestock farms since farms of this type make up a large 
part of the agricultural industry in the Middle West. There are, how- 
ever, in Illinois and in adjacent states, a considerable number of special- 
ized fruit and vegetable farms and there are other types of farm work 
at which you may find employment during the summer months. 

Commercial Vegetable Farms 

Commercial vegetable production is an important industry near most 
large cities, and there will be an opportunity for many boys to find summer 
work on "truck farms" near Chicago, Peoria, Quincy, Rockford, East St. 
Louis, and other cities. In comparison with grain and livestock farms, 
vegetable farms are relatively small. Since much of the weeding, harvest- 
ing, and preparation of crops for market is hand work, a tract as small as 
30 acres may furnish enough work for several persons during the summer 

Many farmers who live near cities transport workers to their farms 
by truck each morning. They pick them up at a point that can be con- 
veniently reached by streetcar or bus from the city, and return them to 
this place when the day's work is finished. This enables the workers to 
live at home. Other vegetable farmers furnish room and board to their 
summer help. If there are a great many workers, the sleeping quarters 
may be bunk houses of various kinds or even temporary facilities in store 
houses or barn lofts. 

This crew is pulling tomato plants which will be reset for commercial production. This is a good 

job for city boys. 

Page 44 

These boys and girls are 
being trained to pick toma- 
toes. They will learn how to 
tell when the fruit is ripe, 
and will be shown how to 
pick without injuring either 
the fruit or the vines. 

In some respects it will be easier to learn to work on a vegetable 
farm than on a general farm since there will be fewer operations to 
master and several persons may work in one crew under the supervision 
of the farmer or an experienced hand. 

Know Your Vegetables 

About fifty different kinds of vegetables are grown in Illinois — some- 
times as many as twenty varieties on one farm. Learn to recognize all 
the more important vegetables before going to work on a vegetable farm. 
Pictures in seed catalogs will be helpful. If you visit a large market 
where vegetables are received from southern localities early in the season, 
you will be able to see the different vegetables themselves. Not only should 
you be able to recognize the mature vegetables — those that are ready 
for market — but you should also learn what the plants look like when 
they are just young seedlings. This should help you avoid pulling up 
vegetable plants along with the weeds when you are detailed to do hand 
weeding. You may refer to botany text books for pictures of many vege- 
table seedlings, or you may plant varieties of vegetable seeds in a shallow 
box of soil at the school house, and study the resulting seedlings. 

Nature of the Work 

On vegetable farms where many kinds of vegetable crops are grown, 
the summer work includes: (1) preparation of the seedbed, (2) planting. 

Hand-hoeing is one of the odd jobs you will probably do in 
connection with garden work. 

Page 45 

Tall ladders are needed 
to pick apples from trees 
of this type, and only 
strong boys can move 
them about for efficient 

(3) cultivation and other care of crops, such as weeding, and spraying 
for control of insects and plant diseases, (4) harvesting, and (5) prepara- 
tion of vegetables for market, which includes grading, bunching, wash- 
ing, and packing. 

The soil is prepared with the same kinds of tools used for grain crops, 
with the addition of a meeker harrow, or a "float," which puts the finish- 
ing touches to the seedbed. Planting is done principally with single-row 
garden seed-drills pushed by hand, or with multiple drills drawn by garden 
tractors. You may be asked to operate either type of machine. Cultivat- 
ing, too, is done by hand-pushed or tractor garden cultivators. Hand 
weeding of such crops as onions, beets, carrots, and parsnips is a job 
you are likely to encounter on any vegetable farm. Spraying of potatoes, 
cabbage, cucumbers, etc., for the control of insect and disease enemies 
is usually accomplished with power sprayers drawn by horses or tractors. 
Preparation of the spray materials is a very responsible job. 

Vegetable crops must be harvested at just the right stage of maturity 
in order to meet the market requirements. They must be graded, bunched, 
and packed for market with great care. To do a good job, you will have 
to follow your employer's instructions very carefully. 

Commercial Fruit Farms 

On fruit farms, a large amount of extra help is needed for harvest- 
ing the crop. The harvest season on a fruit farm producing only one or 
two kinds of fruit may be of short duration (two or three weeks) whereas 
on farms producing a wide variety of fruit it may last all summer. Facil- 
ities for camping in cabins or tents are provided on some farms where 
large numbers of fruit pickers are needed for a short time. 

Berry-picking does not require much muscle, but is a tedious job 
and requires care and perseverance. Since it is usually paid for as piece 
work, an industrious and experienced worker can make very good wages 
at it. Apple picking, on the other hand, runs into real work before the 
day is over. It requires the handling of long ladders if the trees are 
large, and the sacks filled with fruit get heavy to hold. Picking cherries 

Page 46 

has its advantages over the other fruit jobs. The trees are smaller than 
apple trees, step ladders are used, and the picking receptacles are not 
heavy to handle. 

Cannery Crops 

There are many farms on which a large acreage of one kind of vege- 
table may be grown for commercial canning. The harvesting of some 
of these cannery crops requires a great amount of labor. Asparagus farms 
need many extra hands to help cut the plants. If the weather is warm, an 
entire field must be gone over daily for cutting as asparagus shoots grow 
very fast, and a shoot that is "just right" today may be worthless 
tomorrow. The asparagus harvest lasts about two months, but begins before 
school is out. Cutting begins early in the morning and ought to be com- 
pleted before noon each day. In some localities your school schedule may 
be arranged so that some of you can be released for this morning work, 

Peas, sweet corn, and tomatoes are other cannery crops of impor- 
tance in Illinois. 

The early peas are harvested just about the time that school is out, 
and are followed by the harvesting of the later varieties, and then by corn. 
The harvesting of corn from various plantings of different varieties con- 
tinues for about six weeks. 

The peas are cut, vines and all, by the same mowing machine used 
in harvesting hay. On some farms, special loading machines are used 
for getting the pea vines onto the wagon racks. These racks haul them 
to the "viner," which hulls out the peas and screens them into different 
sizes ready for canning. On other farms, the heavy, green pea vines have 
to be pitched onto the wagon-racks with pitch forks. This, as well as 
pitching vines from the rack to feed the "viner," is heavy work. 

The sweet corn is "snapped" from the stalks and thrown into a wagon 
with the husks left on. 

Tomato picking for the canning factory comes for the most part 
after the corn-canning season is about over. Special care must be taken 
to pick the tomatoes at the right stage of maturity in order to make a 
high-grade canned product. Repeated pickings are required; the field 
must be gone over and over as long as the canning season lasts, or until 
the vines are killed by frost. Lugging picking baskets of tomatoes across 
the field in gathering the crop is a real man-sized job. 

Living Conditions on Specialized Farms 

Living conditions for workers on fruit and vegetable farms differ 
from those on general farms where the worker lives with the farm family. 
On the specialized farms, several workers will probably be employed for 
the rush period and they will work in crews, sleep in bunk houses, and 
eat in a mess hall. Boys who choose this type of work must expect to 
do without many conveniences of the home and to come in contact with 
all sorts of persons since these crews are recruited from far and wide. 
You will be working with some who make a regular business of helping 

Page 47 

in fruit and vegetable harvesting — they start in the south in the spring 
and work up north as the season progresses. You should keep these facts 
in mind when deciding whether to work on a specialized farm or on a 
general farm. 

Odd Jobs You May Be Asked to Do 

Many Kinds of Odd Jobs on General Farms 

It was called to your attention earlier that all farmers have a wide 
variety of jobs to do. The dairy farmer is more than just a producer of 
milk — he grows large quantities of feeds for his herd ; in this connection, 
he operates machinery that requires him to be a mechanic of some ability ; 
in maintaining the farmstead, including the house, he must be a care- 
taker, a gardener, and a carpenter. 

This wide variety of functions creates for a farmer a multitude of 
miscellaneous or odd jobs. Farmers refer to many of these tasks as 
"rainy-day" jobs, because they can be put off until weather conditions 
prevent field work. During the war, while farmers are short of labor and 
are trying to increase production, some of these tasks will be delayed or 
dispensed with in favor of more important operations. There are many 
other odd jobs, however, that must be done regularly. 

Odd Jobs About the Farmstead 

Garden work. Most farmers grow some of the vegetables which they 
consume. Gas rationing and food shortages may emphasize the impor- 
tance of the farm garden in 1943. Garden work often involves a large 
amount of hand labor, and on many farms, planting, hoeing, and harvest- 
ing are all done by hand. Some farms have the gardens or truck patches 
so arranged that some of the work can be performed with mechanical 
equipment. Regardless of the farm you are on, don't be surprised if you 
are asked to work in the garden. 

Care of the lawn. The farm is a home as well as place of business. 
If the farmer and his family are to enjoy life, they should have an attrac- 
tive and comfortable dwelling place. The grass must be mowed, weeds 
must be kept down, and flowers and shrubs must be cared for. Most of 
the work in the garden and about the house will not require severe phys- 
ical exertion. It will, however, require persistence and endurance, and is 
often tiring since you must work in a stooped or kneeling position. These 
jobs will add variety to the work on the farm, and most of them can be 
mastered in a short period of time. 

Miscellaneous jobs. It would be impossible to name all the odd jobs 
which you may be asked to do. They vary widely from farm to farm. 
Dairy farmers may give the barns a thorough cleaning and whitewashing 
once or twice a year; other farm buildings may be cleaned at regular or 
irregular intervals. Livestock feeders haul all manure out of the feed- 
lot at various periods. Numerous odd jobs of carpenter work and machin- 
ery repair will have to be performed from time to time, and emergency 
situations may call for you to perform a variety of other tasks. 

Page 48 

Odd Jobs About the Farm 

Cutting weeds. Farmers perennially wage a struggle against weeds. 
Weeds compete with farm crops for the plant food and moisture in the 
soil, and if the weeds are not destroyed, crop yields are reduced. Some 
weeds account for much human discomfort and suffering as their pollen 
causes hay fever. It is highly important for the farmer to keep these 
wild plants in check. 

Numerous methods are used for controlling weeds. The importance 
of cultivation for that purpose was discussed earlier. Cultivation, how- 
ever, is not a complete control measure, so the farmer must often resort 
to pulling or cutting the weeds. This job must be done in the hottest 
summer weather, and it is hard work requiring a large amount of hand 
labor. ^Veeds growing along the road or in fence rows may need to be 
cut by hand with a scythe. 

Frequently it is necessary to go through small-grain or soybean fields 
and pull out weeds. Small-grain crops are not cultivated, and if weeds 
infest the fields, cutting or pulling by hand may be the only alternative 
methods of control. 

Even in the case of corn, cultivation is not one hundred percent effec- 
tive. Very often certain noxious weeds must be cut or pulled out of the 
corn after the last cultivation. This job is usually performed in August, 
and at that time the sun is hot and the corn is tall. There is very little 
breeze ih a cornfield. The corn leaves are sharp and may irritate the 
skin. The work is not severe physically, but it may be uncomfortable for 
the worker. 

Building and repairing fence. On any farm where livestock is kept, 
it is highly important to have good, strong fences. Many farmers use 
temporary fences which must be moved each year or so. Some of the 
fences are permanent and must be repaired regularly. You may be asked 
to help dig post holes, set posts, stretch wire, fasten wire to posts, and 
do general fence repair work. Some of these jobs require hard physical 
exertion while others are relatively simple. 

You will undoubtedly need some supervision when you first start out 
on these jobs. There is danger of injury in working with fencing tools 
and equipment, especially in connection with barbed wire. 

Odd Jobs Essential to Farm Success 

It is very likely that a farmer may call on you to help with a number 
of the jobs we have mentioned. While some of these may become monoto- 
nous and try your patience, remember that many of them are just as essen- 
tial to the farmer's success as are the major assignments in caring for 
livestock and producing crops. Some farmers may feel that you can do 
these jobs with little supervision and thus relieve the experienced workers 
for the more skilled jobs. 

Be prepared to help out with a number of these so-called "odd jobs." 
Do them with the same efficiency and willingness that you carry to the 
other tasks. 

Page 49 


Safety Measures 

We Can't Afford Accidents 

In any type of work there are certain dangers. In this emergency 
our country cannot afford to lose the services of large numbers of people 
by death or injury from accidents — the contribution of each and every 
individual to our total manpower resources is too important. 

Because of scarcity of materials for replacement and the impossibility 
of buying new machines and equipment, special care must also be taken 
to protect every essential article against damage. Everyone should feel 
a personal obligation to take extra good care of all machinery and equip- 
ment, both when it is in actual use and when it is idle. 

Also keep in mind that any loss of livestock due to accident, injuries, 
or sickness will cut down production. Many casualties on the farm wou-ld 
not occur if various protective measures and services were as available to 
farmers as they are to city people. 

There Are Many Farm Hazards 

The great need for precautions on the farm can be illustrated by the 
following observations." 

"Farmers use a surprisingly large number of tools having cutting 
edges and high-speed shafting and belting, and many of these are poorly 
protected or guarded against contact with one's person. Complete pro- 
tection is virtually impossible. 

"Farmers are often far removed from any source of medical assistance, 
and considerable time is required to reach a hospital when necessary. 
Doctors are becoming less common in small rural communities, for they 
are establishing themselves in the larger centers where they can serve 

1 Quotations and all data presented in this section are from "The Prevention of Accidents on Farms and in 
Homes," Bureau of Agricultural Economics, U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

This man stands a good chance of being 

jerked into the pulley and killed. Don't climb 

through or over running belts. 

Page 50 

If this man should sUp, that running belt 

might jerk his arm into the pulley and injure 

him. Never reach through or take hold of 

running belts. 

a greater number of people. Less than a third of the injured farm people 
included in a study made in central New York State received help during 
the first hour following their accidents, and hardly two-thirds were cared 
for within six hours. 

"Half of the accidents to farmers occurred in the barn and barnyard — 
real danger spots. 

"Farmers sustain accidents most often to the upper part of the body. 

"Farmers suffer from infection of wounds and need a standard anti- 
septic on hand at all times." 

There are dangers and hazards associated with all types of work, 
and farming is, of course, no exception. Thousands of people are killed 
every year in traffic accidents, but this does not deter us from traveling — 
it should merely make us more careful. So with farming, we need not 
fear accidents — we simply should be very careful to prevent them. 

Types of Farm Accidents 

By becoming familiar with most common types of farm accidents, it 
is possible for us to get a somewhat clearer 
picture of the precautions which need to be 
followed. You will recall that throughout 
the material presented to you and in the 
discussions of individual topics, the impor- 
tance of carefulness and safety precautions 
have been emphasized. This has been done 
intentionally. Farmers will not tolerate 
workers who are deliberately neglectful and 
careless in regard to protecting life and 

Always speak to a horse or mule to let him know that 

you are there before walking into his stall. Otherwise, 

his natural reaction may be to kick in surprise when 

you touch him. 

Page 51 

Many accidents occur when people carelessly 

reach over fly wheels to oil or adjust running 

machines. Don't take chances like the man 

in this picture! 

The causes of 627 farm-labor claims under workmen's compensation 
during the years 1935 and 1936 were distributed as follows: 

Cause of injury Percent of injuries 

Falls (all kinds) 26.5 

Animals 15.0 

Farm machinery 11.8 

Automobile 9.6 

Struck by objects 12.4 

Strains 5.7 

Cuts and bruises 5.6 

Diseases and infection 2.7 

Others 10.7 

Injuries caused by falls, animals, machinery, and being struck by 
objects are evidently the most common. To insure safety, do your work 
as the farmer instructs and use a reasonable amount of care. 

This fellow is in a dangerous spot. Lone trees 
seem to attract lightning more than do trees 
in a forest. He would be much safer out in 
the middle of the field, and it is much better 
to be wet than dead. 

Page 52 

Here's a man who uses good sense. He 
doesn't let this bull's gentle appearance de- 
ceive him, but leads it with a strong staff. 

Accidents in the Home 

The home is the place of a great many injuries and accidents. In 1940 
the death rate per 100,000 holders of insurance poHcies was for motor 
vehicle accidents, 18.1; for home accidents, 11.7; and for occupational acci- 
dents, 6.2. Thus fatal accidents in the home ran a close second to fatal 
motor vehicle accidents. 

In Minnesota during the first six months of 1940 accidents were respon- 
sible for 849 deaths, 40 percent of which were caused by home accidents. 
Since the home is the scene of so many accidents, it behooves us to be 
careful at all times, whether working about the farm or in the farm home. 
Play safe ! Do not suffer injury because of a lack of knowledge or through 
carelessness. Learn good safety precautions and practice them daily. 

Danger of Fires 

Fire is a great danger on any farm. Many farms have no fire-fighting 
equipment or facilities available. Others, which are in an organized fire 
district, are so far from town that a fire may gain great headway before 
the fire truck arrives. Furthermore, most farms do not have a big enough 

This farmer may start a costly fire and be 

severely burned himself. A lantern should be 

hung away from hay or straw, and in a place 

where cows or horses can't turn it over. 

Page 53 

Always stay on the tractor while it is moving 

Climbing back from a moving tractor to 

adjust something is flirting with death. 

water supply to fight or control a large fire. Once the blaze gains a good 
start, the most that can usually be hoped for is that it can be kept from 
spreading to other buildings. 

Many of the articles stored in farm buildings, and often the buildings 
themselves, are constructed of very inflammable materials. Hay and straw 
stored in the barn burn rapidly and fiercely once they are ignited. Most 
of the buildings are constructed of wood which is the most combustible 
of all building materials. 

Safety Precautions 

Now that some of the dangers, losses, and hazards that exist or 
occur on farms have been pointed out, let us summarize some of the pre- 
cautions which we as individuals can and should observe: 

1. Falls are one of the most common causes of injuries. When work- 
ing where there is possibility of a fall, work and act slowly, care- 
fully, and cautiously. If you are trusting some structure to hold 
you, Tnake sure it is strong enough to support your weight and 
be sure of your footing. 

2. In using tools, beware of sharp edges, make sure the tool is in 
good operating condition, and use the tool only for what it is 

3. In operating machinery be sure each machine is properly adjusted 
and in good operating condition. Never attempt to adjust or 
repair a machine that is in operation. Keep your hands and your 
clothing away from moving parts. Follow instructions. Never 
take unnecessary chances. 

When unhitching a team be sure both horses are 

unhitched before leading them away. Leaving one 

tug hitched to the wagon can start a wreck. Have 

a regular system for unhitching the team. 

Page 54 

There's trouble ahead for this man. The mower is 

in gear with horses hitched to it, and he is down in 

front of the mowing machine knives. 

4. When working around farm animals of any kind, be extremely 
cautious until they become accustomed to you. Almost any of 
them may be dangerous to strangers. Leave the care of all male 
animals to the farmer, for the male of any species is likely to be 
dangerous. Livestock, particularly bulls, are the cause of many 
injuries and deaths. 

5. Fire is a great hazard on all farms. NEVER SMOKE IN OR 
AROUND ANY FARM BUILDING. Be careful with lamps and 
lanterns. And don't carry loose matches or strike them to see 
your way around in the dark. 

Most of these and other safety precautions you already know. So 
have other people known them who have caused thousands of fatal acci- 
dents — they thought the accident wouldn't happen to theyn, but it did. 
are absolutely necessary in the prevention of accidents. 

The principal difference between farm dangers and hazards and 
those of industry is that there are not so many remedial and corrective 
measures available to farmers. PREVENTION is therefore more than 
ever important for them. Know what you should do and how to do it 
before vou start. 

Page 55 


A Day on a Farm 

Farm Life Is More Than Just Work 

Getting used to the change from city life, living with the farm family, 
and taking part in rural community affairs are all as much a part of farm 
life as the work to be done. 

Let us look in on what might have been a typical day for a city high 
school boy who spent last summer helping out on a farm. 

The sun isn't up yet, but Paul and the other men are up and are 
doing the morning chores — milking, feeding the livestock, and getting 
the horses and tractor ready. 

Paul wanted to make sure that he was dressed on time and ready to 
leave with the other men, so after the first day he sent back home for 
his alarm clock. The old roosters on the farm still hadn't learned that 
this was a war-time emergency and farm people were getting up before 
daybreak! Right after chores, and just about the time the lazy old 
roosters are beginning to crow lustily and announce the dawn, Paul and 
the other men are already on their way back to the house to wash up for 

The big stacks of flapjacks and the steaming plates of bacon and eggs 
find Paul with a bigger appetite for breakfast than he had ever had in 

Page 56 

Boys and girls who work on general farms will share the living room with the 

farm family. 

A shady lawn is a swell place to rest during the noon hour on a summer day. 

the city. Eight hours of sleep and a half hour or more of work in the 
morning air has certainly done something. 

Before leaving for work in the field, Paul makes his bed and puts his 
room in order. He wasn't used to doing this at home but it didn't take 
him long to see that farm women have many more tasks to worry about 
than his mother had in the city. Realizing this, he makes it a point to 
wipe his shoes before coming into the house, so as not to track up the 

He feels fine on the way to the field, for this is one of the nicest parts 
of the day. The sun has begun to rise and is spreading its colors across 
the sky, and he has a good breakfast under his belt. 

Out in the field Paul gets further instructions about what he is to 
do. He listens carefully before carrying them out. He doesn't hesitate 
to ask questions, so he can be absolutely sure that he will do what is 
expected of him. He has learned, too, that he can get the hang of a lot 
of things by watching others and then doing them in the same way. 

The second day he was on the farm, Paul had a good lesson about 
farm animals. He tried to milk one of the cows from the left side. The 
cow, however, had other ideas — she put her foot in the bucket and kicked 
Paul into the gutter. Mr. Brown, the farmer, explained that all cows are 
trained to be milked from the right side and that most of them resent any 
departure from this custom. 

It was clear to Paul after this that he wouldn't stay on a farm long 
if he kept trying what he thought were "better ways." Those sore spots 
reminded him that he had better ask before trying out any new ideas. 
There usually were good reasons why Mr. Brown was using the methods 
he was. 

From after sunup 'til close to noon, there is work to do with the men 
in the field. The sun is hot, and the work is heavy. Boy, does he sweat! 
This is real work! To avoid blisters, he has provided himself with work 
gloves to wear when pitching hay, scooping corn, or doing similar jobs. 

Page 57 

He also wears a wide-brimmed straw hat to protect his face and eyes from 
the blistering sun. 

By dinner time the work in the field has left him dirty so he washes 
his face and hands in the basin outside the kitchen door and combs his 
hair. Since the other men will use the same basin, he uses plenty of soap 
and water to leave it clean for the next fellow. 

Most farm families put all the food in large dishes on the table and 
then everybody "helps himself". So Paul takes normal portions of every- 
thing passed to him. There are corn bread muffins for dinner this noon. 
These happen to be something new to him. His mother didn't make them 
and he isn't quite sure whether he will like them. However, he knows it is 
courteous to eat whatever is put before him, so he tries one of them. 
Yum, are they good ! ! He asks for more and decides he will try every- 
thing once. His appreciation certainly pleases Mrs. Brown who prides 
herself on her good cooking. 

Before he came to the country Paul was told not to leave any food 
on his plate when he finished eating, as farm folks consider this wasteful. 
He smiles as he thinks of this now. It doesn't look as though he would 
have any trouble on that score — plenty of exercise, fresh air, and sun- 
shine can make a fellow feel like a hungry bear. 

Paul and the farmer's son Ed, a boy a few years younger than Paul 
and whose room Paul shares, have a lot to talk about at lunch. They listen 
to the older men, too. Paul enters into the conversation occasionally but 
is careful not to make a nuisance of himself by talking too much or by 
asking questions about things which are none of his concern. 

After dinner the men rest for a short while before going out to their 
afternoon work. 

Paul's work is different this afternoon. Mrs. Brown asks him to help 
her cultivate the garden. She leads the horse while Paul guides the 
cultivator, and later both use hoes to cut the weeds that grow in the rows 

Most farm families find 
some time for play, and 
they usually have facil- 
ities available in their 
own yard. 

Page 58 

and were missed by the cultivator. Later in the afternoon he cleans out 
the poultry house, and fills the self-feeder and waterer for the hens. 
When the other men come in from the field he helps with the milking. 

By 7 o'clock he has finished his work and he and Ed wash up and go 
into the house to read the paper before supper. 

Paul is really doing a good job as a farm helper. Much of his success 
is due to his ability to fit into the life here as he finds it. He has been 
courteous and good natured. He has accepted country customs without 
criticism and has joined in the family life and games wholeheartedly. He 
has been considerate enough not to take privileges away from others, 
such as sitting in the only easy chair or monopolizing the evening paper 
or radio programs. He finds that he not only likes the men he works with 
but that he enjoys living with these people. 

Since it happens to be Friday evening, the family decide to go to a 
movie and ask Paul if he wouldn't like to go too. He thanks them and 
says he would like to ride in with them, but since he has already made 
plans to go to a monthly meeting of a rural youth group with a high- 
school friend of his who works at a nearby farm, he makes an appoint- 
ment to meet them when they are ready to start home. The boys have 
an unexpectedly good time at the meeting and Paul has much to talk about 
with the Browns on the way home. 

They are all back at the farmhouse close to 10 o'clock, and by this 
time good and ready for bed. This is an hour later than usual for Paul, 
for he has usually been glad to "call it a day" at 9 o'clock. Eight good 
full hours of sleep are not too much if a fellow is to stand up to his next 
day's work. It hasn't been hard, since the first day or two, to leave those 
late city hours behind. 

"Shucks," he mutters as he goes off to sleep, "it sure will take that 
old alarm clock to get me out of here in the morning." 

Your Summer on the Farm 

Living and working with farmers next summer will be an experience 
for you and will lead to a broader understanding and appreciation of the 
farmer and his family, their life and problems. Since about 26 million 
people in our country live on farms, it is decidedly worth while to know 
them in this way. 

Join in the family social life when you are invited, and also take part 
in the community activities. You will probably have an opportunity to 
attend the church of your choice if there is one in the community or you 
may wish to go to the one attended by the farmer and his family. 

There will likely be a 4-H club or a chapter of Future Farmers of 
America in the neighborhood and when you are invited to attend their 
meetings do so as you will find them both interesting and instructive. 
The 4-H clubs have a project known as the "Victory Service Project" 
which is especially designed for boys from the city who are working on 
farms during the summer months. You can therefore become a regularly 

Page 59 

enrolled 4H member if you desire. You will discover that farm boys and 
girls take some time from work for baseball, swimming, or other outdoor 
sports, and you will be expected to join in these activities. 

Before taking a job on a farm, have a thorough physical examina- 
tion ; be sure that you are fit and have no contagious disease. 

Break into the work gradually, and do not overwork the first day. It 
will probably take you all of two weeks to get used to farm work. Your 
muscles will be stiff at first, especially during the first three days. 

If you have lived in the city most of your life, you may find that a 
summer spent on a farm is a welcome change from city life. There may 
be times when your patience will be tried and your pride may be hurt, but 
you should be able to master your feelings. You will enjoy the large 
expanse of countryside, the fresh air, a new experience, and will have the 
satisfaction that comes with having done a real day's work, day in and day 
out. Farm work will develop your muscles, prepare you for athletic activ- 
ities, and thus help build the kind of a body you will need for the rest 
of your life. Finally, your contribution to our war effort will be truly 

The farm family starts out for church on Sunday morning. If you work 

on a farm during the vacation period you will probably have a chance to 

attend church if you wish. 


The publishers wish to express their appreciation 
to the following for use of the pictures in this 

University of Illinois, College of Agriculture, 
Urbana, Illinois 

J. C. Allen and Son, 

West LaFayette, Indiana 

International Harvester Company, 
Chicago, Illinois 

John Deere Implement Company, 
Moline, Illinois 

J. I. Case Company, 
Racine, Wisconsin 

Caterpillar Tractor Company, 
Peoria, Illinois 

This material was prepared in the College of Agriculture. University 
of Illinois, at the request of the State Farm Labor Subcommittee, by a 
committee appointed by the Director of the Extension Service in 
Agriculture and Home Economics of the University of Illinois and 
designated to study farm labor problems for the Illinois State Council 
of Defense. 



Why City Boys and Girls Are Needed on Farms in 1943 6 

Your Part in the War Effort 6 

Agriculture — A National Industry 6 

Agriculture — An Essential War Industry 6 

The Farm Labor Situation 7 

A Challenge to the City Youth of America 7 

1. Work, Wages, and Living Conditions 8 

The Nature of Farm Work 8 

Wages and Living Conditions 10 

There's a Place for the Girls, Too 10 

A Contribution to War Effort and Personal Development 11 

2. Preparing and Planning for Farm Work 12 

Start Making Plans Now 12 

Personal Preparation — Physical and Mental 13 

Learn by Visiting 13 

Placement Plans 14 

References 14 

3. Dairy Cattle — Responsibilities for Feeding and Milking Them .... 15 

Cows Are Sensitive Animals 15 

Terms You Need to Know 16 

Care of a Dairy Herd 17 

High Production Is Your Challenge 20 

4. Livestock — Care and Handling of Horses, Swine, Sheep, Poultry, 

and Beef Cattle 21 

Think of Animals as Friends 21 

Caring for and Handling Horses 21 

Feeding and Care of Swine 22 

Feeding and Caring for Sheep 25 

Caring for the Poultry 26 

Caring for Beef Cattle 28 

Summary 28 

5. Crop Production — Your Responsibilities 29 

Crop Production Is Basic to All Agriculture 29 

Crops Raised on the Farm 29 

Your Jobs in Crop Production 31 

SPP2«! 1943 



6. Farm Equipment and Buildings 36 

Learn to Identify 36 

Small Tools 37 

Buildings and Equipment 38 

Miscellaneous Equipment 39 

Your Opportunities and Responsibilities 39 

7. Operating Farm Machinery — Your Responsibilities 40 

Kinds of Farm Machinery 40 

Farm Machinery and Wartime Production 42 

8. Special Types of Work and Odd Jobs on the Farm 44 

Fruit, Vegetables and Canning Crops 44 

Commercial Vegetable Farms 44 

Know Your Vegetables 45 

Nature of the Work 45 

Commercial Fruit Farms 46 

Cannery Crops 47 

Living Conditions on Specialized Farms 47 

Odd Jobs You May Be Asked to do 48 

Many Kinds of Odd Jobs on. General Farms 48 

Odd Jobs About the Farmstead 48 

Odd Jobs About the Farm 49 

Odd Jobs Essential to Farm Success 49 

9. Safety Measures 50 

We Can't Afford Accidents 50 

There Are Many Farm Hazards 50 

Types of Farm Accidents 51 

Accidents in the Home 53 

Danger of Fires 53 

Safety Precautions 54 

10. A Day on a Farm 56 

Farm Life Is More Than Just Work 56 

Your Summer on the Farm 59 

Z;;;::^^ns of 'LL'»'°f .-V,?!nurii 

3 0112 083837754 

To the High School "T^oys 
and (jirls of Illinois 

(f^j%:l APOLEON is credited with the statement 
^y ^L/ that "An army marches on its stomach." 
All fighting men recognize the truth of this statement. 

It is not hard to understand, either, why a nation that 
has food to offer the hungry people of the world will 
be able to influence the direction which peace will 

Secretary Wickard has marshalled these thoughts 
into one sentence: FOOD WILL WIN THE WAR 

If it is true that food may be the most critical factor 
in winning the war and in establishing a just and last- 
ing peace when it is over, it is just as true that lack 
of it can help to lose the war and postpone indefi- 
nitely our obtaining the kind of peace we, as free 
Americans, can tolerate. That is why farm service in 
1943 by those below military age will mean real 
service to our country and the cause we fight for. 

Dean, College of Agriculture, 
University of Illinois ; Chairman 
Committee on Agricultural Resources 
and Production, Illinois State Council 
of Defense 

Major General; Executive Director, 
Illinois State Council of Defense