Boxwell the Farm: Row Crops
Here is our final installment on Boxwell the Farm. We’ve looked at the cattle, the hogs, and the tobacco. This week is row crops, mostly corn.
Before we discuss the corn though, we were reminded last week of an important detail that we have thus far neglected to mention: Ranger Bobby Smith. While the staff were involved in many aspects of the farm, such as building fences for the pigs, repairing cut cattle fences, or helping to harvest the tobacco, this whole operation was managed by The head Rangers: first Coleman Wright and then Bobby Smith. It is worth letting those details sink in for a moment because they reveal what a truly different world being a ranger was in the 1960s and early 1970s. It was mowing and maintanence, but it was farming and ranching and selling too. It was finding people who weren’t just good at making sure the HVAC worked or could repair tractors and cars, but could maintain the health and well-being of livestock and crops. It is fair to say this was an awesome responsibility.
The row crops could be found exactly where you would expect them to be: in the field to the left of the road leading to Akers’ Cabin/Fehrmann Training center. Crops were planted here regularly for many years. However, you could also find corn intermittenly at Clarence’s farm (The Camporee Area) on both sides of the road coming into the area. Much like the other farming aspects, the corn was not kept for use on the reservation, but was sold as a revenue source for the Council.
Corn wasn’t the only thing grown on the way to Fehrmann/Akers’. Over the years, this field also saw sunflowers as well as beans and millett. Farming was a life blood for the reservation and a wholly different world from the camp that exists now!
This is the last post for 2015. Have a happy New Year and we’ll see you next year!