is one of the most important jobs in the world. In the early 1700
and 1800’s most people lived on farms to have food to eat. When the Child
Care Center was established in Sparta they had a lot of farmland to feed
the children who lived there.
Early people didn’t often take care of their farmland. They were not aware that land must be looked after to grow massive amounts of food. By the 1800’s farming became more productive. Still it was very difficult work. Land to be cleared. The land was plowed with a team of horses or oxen. Watering was hard because they had to take water buckets to water the fields if they weren’t getting rain. Some of the farms where built near rivers, streams, or springs, but they still had to haul water. Most planting was done by hand.
Because of the amount of children the Child Care Center raised their own animals for food. The animals they had included cows, pigs, chickens, and work horses. Mr. Young who lived there as a boy said,” young men were required to work on the farm to help produce the food”. “The worst part of being on a farm was picking stones by hand in the spring”, said Mr. Young.
Shovels help farmers by digging holes for planting seeds. Hoes help by making dips in the ground also for planting seeds. Axes are used for chopping down trees that is made into firewood. The plow is like the hoe because it is also used for making dips in the ground for seeding. The farmers have a broom for cleaning out the stalls. They also have harrows to take out stumps. They had pitchforks for picking up poop and straw. They used scythes for harvesting crops. The cradle they had was used for the same purpose, for harvesting crops. Of course if you had cattle you also had to make all of the fencing by hand. The invention of machines to help with all of the jobs on the farm really helped the Child Care Center. They were able to produce more than enough without all of the back breaking work. Boys still helped out, but it was not as hard as in the beginning.
The major producer for farming is the cows. There are different kinds of cows including beef and dairy .The farmers take the cows calf away from the cow , so the calf didn’t drink all the milk . But the beef don’t take the calf from it’s mother , but when the calf leaves it’s mother it gets butchered . The dairy cows stay alive for as long as they produce milk.
Another of the crops the farmers commonly harvested was corn. This was also grown at the Child Care Center for the children to eat. They grew wheat too, they had to grind it up to make flour to make into bread. Mr. Young told us, “We always had wonderful bread to eat, and there was always enough food for all of the children.”
World Book Encyclopedia, Millennium 2000; World
Book,Inc 233 North Michigan
Wisconsin Agriculture; Badger History,The State
Historical Society of Wisconsin
Farming Today Yesterday's Way, Cheryl Walsh Bellville; Carolrhoda Books, Inc., Minneapolis, MN
Dairy in Wisconsin; Badger History, The State Historical
Society of Wisconsin
Dairy Farming, Geoffrey Patterson; Andre' Deutsch
Limited, 105 Great Russell Street,
Photo's courtesy of:
Monroe County, Wisconsin Pictorial History 1976,
Monroe County Wisconsin Bicentennial Committee, Chairperson: Mrs. Robert
Farming Today Yesterday's Way, Cheryl Walsh Bellville; Carolrhoda Books, Inc.,Minneapolis, MN