McCathern, Gerald 1974-05-30

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Gerald McCathern, longtime farmer and resident of Hereford, discusses general farming practices and several farm problems and solutions.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Gerald McCathern

Additional Parties Recorded: None

Date: May 30, 1974

Location: Hereford, Texas

Interviewer: Jeff Townsend

Length: 1 hour 20 minutes


Tape 1, Side 1: Family background, Parents grew cotton and maize, Lists farm equipment used, Summarizes parents’ life, Moved to Hereford in 1951, Used some insecticides, Notes early use of electricity and indoor plumbing, Tells about growing cotton, Bought a tractor, Describes heating fuels, Belongs to farm cooperatives, Further discusses farm co-ops and farm problems, Speculates on solutions.

Tape 1, Side 2: Continues discussion of farm problems and solutions, National Farmers’ Organization conflict described, Produced maize, corn, wheat, vegetables and cattle, Explains agriculture as a natural utility, States opinions on beef problems, Comments on politics and big business, Hired labor, Used some braceros, Replaced braceros with machinery and chemicals, Describes chemicals used, Irrigation techniques discussed, Comments on water depletion.

Tape 2, Side 1: Water conservation practices discussed, Lists technological and mechanical changes in farming, Anticipates future changes, Explains price changes, Farm machinery now costs more, Subsidy program ended, Farmers have a lack of organization, States opinion on corporate farming, Comments on crop insurance, Concerned about future of agriculture.

Range Dates: 1940s-1974

Bulk Dates: 1951-1974

Access Information

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Recording Format Notes:


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