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Farm Bureau Feed Mill
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Through the 19th century, American farmers became ever more dependent on railroads to transport their product. Individual farmers became entirely dependent on the prices railroads were willing to pay for their crops. When they approached railroads collectively though, their combined power allowed them to make a better deal. Several organizations, including the National Grange and Farmers Alliance, had tried to organize farmers into collective units with moderate success. The Farm Bureau was another generation of this idea. The first Bureau was founded in 1911 in Broome County, New York. In some states, like Massachusetts, it was open to all; in others, only dues-paying members could participate. The facility pictured here at Deerfield, Massachusetts, allowed farmers to grind and store their grain at somewhat better prices than the railroads' facilities.
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