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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Farm, Field and Fireside

A subject guide for use with the Farm, Field and Fireside collection of farm newspapers and periodicals.

Primary Sources


United States. Country Life Commission. Report of the Country Life Commission. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1909.
Also available as Senate Doc. No. 705, 60th Cong., 2d Sess. (1909).
"Smith-Lever Act." May 8, 1914. 63d Cong., 2d sess. United States Statutes at Large 38, ch.79, pp.372-374.
"An act to provide for cooperative agricultural extension work."
Also referred to as "Agricultural Extension Act" and "Cooperative Agricultural Extension Work Act."
Reprinted in American Decades: Primary Sources.
Statutes at Large 38 available online. (For this act, jump to page 392 in the PDF.)


Baker, Charlotte A. Books for the Farmer's Wife. Fort Collins, Col.: [s.l.], 1917.
"Feminism on the Farm." The Nation. Vol. 113, no. 2937 (October 19, 1921): 440.
United States Department of Agriculture Reports.
"Extracts from letters received from farm women in response to an inquiry 'How the U.S. Department of Agriculture can better meet the needs of farm housewives'."
Report No. 103. Social and Labor Needs of Farm Women. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1915.
Report No. 104. Domestic Needs of Farm Women. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1915.
Report No. 105. Educational Needs of Farm Women. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1915.
Report No. 106. Economic Needs of Farm Women. Washington, D.C.: GPO. 1915.
Voices of American Homemakers. Ed. Eleanor Arnold. Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press, 1985.
A collection of thematically organized oral histories, covering 1900-1950.
Writings of Farm Women, 1840-1940: an Anthology. Eds. Carol Fairbanks, and Bergine Haakenson. New York: Garland, 1990.

Secondary Sources


The American Midwest: Essays on Regional History. Eds. Andrew R. Clayton an Susan E. Gray. Bloomington, Ind.: Indiana University Press, 2001.

Bowers, William L. The Country Life Movement in America, 1900-1920. Port Washington, N.Y.: Kennikat Press, 1974

Danbom, David B. Born in the Country: a History of Rural America. 2d ed. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006.

Kline, Ronald R. Consumers in the Country: Technology and Social Change in Rural America. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2000.

Scott, Roy V. The Reluctant Farmer: the Rise of Agricultural Extension to 1914. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1970.

Theobald, Paul. Call School: Rural Education in the Midwest to 1918. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1995.

A Voice of Their Own: the Woman Suffrage Press, 1840-1910. Ed. Martha M. Solomon. Tuscaloosa: University of Alabama Press, 1991.

Farm Press

Bardolph, Richard. Agricultural Literature and the Early Illinois Farmer. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1948.

Demaree, Albert Lowther. The American Agricultural Press, 1819-1860. Morningside Heights, New York: Columbia University Press, 1941.

Evans, James F. Prairie Farmer and WLS: the Burridge D. Butler Years. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1969.

Evans, James F., and Rodolfo N. Salcedo. Communications in Agriculture: the Amerian Farm Press. Ames, Iowa: Iowa State University Press, 1974.

Farrell, Richard T. Advice to Farmers: The Content of Agricultural Newspapers, 1860-1910. Agricultural History. 51.1 (1977): 209-17.

Fry, John J. The Farm Press, Reform, and Rural change, 1895-1920. New York: Routledge, 2005.

Murphy, Donald R. What Farmers Read and Like: a Record of Experiments with Readership on Wallaces' Farmer and Wisconsin Agriculturist, 1938-1961. Ames: Iowa State University Press, 1962.

Schlebecker, John T., and Andrew W. Hopkins. A History of Dairy Journalism in the United States, 1810-1950. Madison: University of Wisoncon Press, 1957.

Shulman, Stuart W. "The Progressive Era Farm Press: a Primer on a Neglected Source of Journalism History." Journalism History. 25.1 (1999): 26-35.

Wood, James Playsted, "The Farm Magazines." Chap. 14 in Magazines in the United States. 2d ed. New York: Ronald Press, 1956.


Casey, Janet Galligani. "Farm Women, Letters to the Editor, and the Limits of Autobiography Theory." Journal of Modern Literature. 28.1 (2004): 89-106.

-----. "'This is YOUR Magazine': Domesticity, Agrarianism, and The Farmer's Wife." American Periodicals. 14.2 (2004): 179-211.

Fairbanks, Carol, and Sara Brooks Sundberg. Farm Women on the Prairie Frontier: a Sourcebook for Canada and the United States. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1983. Part bibliographic essay, part critical study of source documents.

Garvey, Ellen Gruber. "Less Work for 'Mother': Rural Readers, Farm Papers, and the Makeover of 'The Revolt of "Mother"'." Legacy. 26.1 (2009): 119-135.

Holt, Marilyn Irvin. Linoleum, Better Babies and the Modern Farm Woman, 1890-1930. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 1995.

Jellison, Katherine. Entitled to Power: Farm Women and Technology, 1913-1963. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1993.

Neth, Mary. Preserving the Family Farm: Women, Community and the Foundations of Agribusiness in the Midwest, 1900-1940. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995

Lauters, Amy Mattson. "More Than a Farmer's Wife: Constructions of American Farm Women in Selected Media, 1910-1960." PhD diss., University of Minnesota, 2005.