Bagwell, George 1974-05-09

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On Tape 1, Castro County farmer George Bagwell discusses his farming operations from the 1920s to the present (1974). On Tape 2, he discusses the history of co-operatives in the area, irrigation and water conservation, farm labor and changes in lifestyles in the wake of farm mechanization.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: George Bagwell

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: May 9, 1974

Location: Dimmitt, Texas

Interviewer: Jeff Townsend

Length: 1 hour


Tape 1, Side 1: Family background, early life, Moved to Floyd County in 1906, Terms of land acquisition, Discussion of early grain crops, Dairy, hogs, chickens cited, Early vegetable farming mentioned, Story of Martin milo told, Mechanization of milo examined, First dust shield innovation claimed, Mechanical servicemen noted, Failure of combine patent explained, Attitude toward farm innovation expressed, Land acquisition in 1923 described, Early irrigation failure explored, Farm inventory in 1929 given

Tape 1, Side 2: Farm diversification explained, Rules of dry farming given, Cotton farming contrasted to grain farming, Contour, terracing practices noted, Use of Kaffir corn contrasted to maize, Ideas on drought resistance and yield expressed, Fertilizers, insect problems, wet-year problems, weather conditions discussed, Opinion of hail insurance, Farm financing explored, Special requirements of irrigation farming, Origin of Russian thistle weed, Attitude toward farm chemicals noted, Role as co-operative leader presented, Opposition to co-ops and co-ops' survival explored, Origin, failure, and success of area co-ops examined, History of Dimmitt Wheat Growers given, Philosophy of co-ops expressed

Tape 2, Side 1: History of Dimmitt Wheat Growers continued, Problems with Houston Bank of Co-operatives, Conservative attitude toward feed mill and sugar mill examined, History of Dimmitt starch (corn) mill related, Water conservation system explained, Irrigation practices examined, Tube irrigation of 1930s, Flood irrigation, Early use of tractor as a supplement and later use of tractor noted, Farm labor reviewed, Criticism of colleges and universities, Criticism of welfare system, Co-operative use of bracero labor recalled

Tape 2, Side 2: Recollections of REA and early electrical systems, Acquisition of indoor plumbing, freezers recalled, Anecdote concerning the obsolescence of steam-powered thresher, Use of cow chips, coal and other fuel noted, Viewpoint of the Plains in the frontier pattern examined, Present farm operation discussed, Land fraud of 1930s in New Mexico cited, Land price cycles described, Reasons for present inflated land prices, First public roads noted

Range Dates: 1906-1930s

Bulk Dates: 1906-1930s

Access Information

Original Recording Format:

Recording Format Notes:


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