American History & Agriculture

8000BC-1600″s

8000 BC

The Birth of Agriculture: Animals and grain were domesticated in the Middle East.
8000BC Domesticated Animals

1492-1495

Christopher Columbus brought calves, goats, sheep, pigs, hens, citrus, melons and vegetables to the New World.
1492 Columbus

1600″s

Tobacco was the first important export from the New World.
1600 Tobacco

1793-1803

1793

The Cotton Gin was invented by Eli Whitney.
1793 cottongin

1775

John Chapman (Johnny Appleseed) was born. Johnny Appleseed was known for planting apple orchards across the nation.
1775 JohnnyAppleseed

1803

The Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the United States overnight as land that is now home to 14 mid-west states was purchased from France for five cents an acre.
1803 LPterritory

1815-1837

1815-1820

Steamboats become a practical way to move agricultural products.
1815-1820 steamboats

1825

United States Senate Agriculture Committee was established.
1825 USAC

1837

John Deere began to produce polished-steel plows in his Illinois blacksmith shop.
1837 original john deere plow

1858-1862

1858

Mason Jars were invented, which allowed people to can fruits and vegetables at home.
1858 Masons Jars

1861-1865

United States Civil War
Image: Brigadier General Clinton Dugald MacDougall and Staff
Library of Congress

1861 MacDougal

1862

The United States Department of Agriculture was established.
The Homestead Act gave farmers free land to cultivate.
Image: Men plowing a field with horses.

1870 Horse Plow

1862-1896

1862-1875

First American Agriculture Revolution: Horses replace human labor.
Image: Bladensburg, Maryland Agricultural College
Library of Congress

1865 Maryland Ag College

1874

Barbed wire becomes available for fencing rangeland.
Image: Wheat harvest

1882 Harvesting Wheat

1896

George Washington Carver became Tuskegee Institute of Alabama”s director of agricultural research. Carver developed 300 uses for the peanut, and 118 uses for the sweet potato – reviving agriculture in the south.
1896 george washington carver2

1906-1912

1906

The Federal Meat Inspection Act, and the Federal Food and Drug Act improved food safety across America.
1906 Federal Meat Inspection Act

1909

The airplane was invented by the Wright brothers.
1909 Wright Brothers

1912

Youth agricultural programs became known as 4-H clubs.
Image: Family bringing pig, sheep, and poultry exhibits to the annual 4-H fair in Charleston, WV.
Library of Congress

1912 4H Family

1917-1928

1917

The Smith-Hughes Act established public vocational education, including Agricultural Education.
Image: Eleven Mile Corner, AZ. Boys working in a workshop at a vocational school established by the Smith-Hughes Act.
Library of Congress

1917 Boys Ag Class

1919

The American Farm Bureau Federation was formed by a group of farmers from 30 states.
1919 The American Farm Bureau Federation

1928

The National FFA Organization was established.
Image: Future Farmers of America (FFA) students in Vernon County, Wisconsin studying a tractor.
Library of Congress

1928 FFA Students

1932-1947

1932-1936

The Dust-Bowl caused many mid-west farmers to move west and led to changes in soil management and online casino conservation.
Images: 1933 – Dust bowl refugee from Chickasaw, OK in Imperial Valley, CA. 1936 – 1936 Soil blown by dust bowl winds piled up in large drifts near Liberal, Kansas.
Library of Congress

1933 Dust Bowl

1945-1970

Second American Agriculture Revolution: Tractors replace horses for farm labor.
Images: 1941 Hay Wagon and 1946 Tractor

1941 Hay Wagon

1947

General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) increased trade between participating countries
1941 Tractor

1980-1994

1980″s

Agriculturists began using biotechnology to improve crops and livestock, and increased research improves agriculture production.
Image: USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service scientists study Eastern Gamagrass roots.
USDA ARS

USDA RCS

1993

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) lowered trade barriers between the United States, Mexico and Canada.
1993 nafta2

1994

Satellite technology is used by farmers to improve farming practices.
1994 Nasa Sat Farm

1996-2000

1996

Food Quality Protection Act enacted.
1996 Food Quality Protection Act

1997

Soybeans and cotton make headlines as the first weed and insect resistant biotech crops available for purchase.
1997 Cotton

2000

Organic standards are released by the USDA for foods with the organic label.
2000 usda certified organic

2008-Present

2008

The Food, Conservation and Energy Act was adopted.
In 2008 each US farmer produces enough food and fiber to support 155 people.

2008 FarmBill logosm

Present Day

Technology use in agriculture continues to increase, as American farmers strive to provide the safest, most affordable, most abundant food supply in the world!
Image: GPS (Global Positioning System) collars are used on cattle to identify the location of the animal, and even what they eat and drink!
USDA ARS

USDA_GPS

Education Resources

Fun eLearning Activities

Conquer Colonial Agriculture

1800″s – A Time For Change