Quotes About Agriculture

I have a few trailing threads here that are drafts, so I might as well start to publish a few of them.  Here's one, which are quotes about agriculture, or which reference it, which surprised me.


G. K. Chesterton

True contentment is a thing as active as agriculture. It is the power of getting out of any situation all that there is in it. It is arduous and it is rare.

G. K. Chesterton

You can't have the family farm without the family.


Coen Brothers (Oh Brother!  Where Art Thou?)

Ulysses Everett McGill: What about you, Delmar? What are you gonna do with your share of that dough?

Delmar O'Donnell: I'm gonna visit them foreclosein' son of a guns down at the Indianola Savings and Loan. Slap that money on the barrel head and buy back the family farm. You ain't no kind of man if you ain't got land.

Calvin Coolige:
There is no safer place of existence than the moderate sized farm. It is not often practical to employ a large amount of machinery and a large area of land in attempting to turn agriculture into manufacture of some single great staple. But the family that makes the farm an old fashioned home with diversified crops, fruits and domestic animals sufficient to meet the household needs will still find agriculture one of the most satisfying forms of existence.
Catherine Doherty
Farming was the way of life meant for the majority of men
 Date Added:  May 16, 2014

Dwight Eisenhower:

Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil and you're a thousand miles from the corn field.

Henry Ford:

Surprising quote from Henry Ford:
The land! That is where our roots are. There is the basis of our physical life. The farther we get away from the land, the greater our insecurity. From the land comes everything that supports life, everything we use for the service of physical life. The land has not collapsed or shrunk in either extent or productivity. It is there waiting to honor all the labor we are willing to invest in it, and able to tide us across any local dislocation of economic conditions. No unemployment insurance can be compared to an alliance between man and a plot of land.
Surprising in that, while no doubt unintentional, his product did so much to make the land "shrink in extent" and also to make it so much more difficult to obtain for the average farmer hopeful.


Book of Genisis

Israel loved Joseph best of all his sons,
for he was the child of his old age;
and he had made him a long tunic.
When his brothers saw that their father loved him best of all his sons,
they hated him so much that they would not even greet him.

One day, when his brothers had gone
to pasture their father’s flocks at Shechem

Israel said to Joseph,
“Your brothers, you know, are tending our flocks at Shechem.
Get ready; I will send you to them.”

So Joseph went after his brothers and caught up with them in Dothan.
They noticed him from a distance,
and before he came up to them, they plotted to kill him.
They said to one another: “Here comes that master dreamer!
Come on, let us kill him and throw him into one of the cisterns here;
we could say that a wild beast devoured him.
We shall then see what comes of his dreams.”

When Reuben heard this,
he tried to save him from their hands, saying,
“We must not take his life.
Instead of shedding blood,” he continued,
“just throw him into that cistern there in the desert;
but do not kill him outright.”
His purpose was to rescue him from their hands
and return him to his father.
So when Joseph came up to them,
they stripped him of the long tunic he had on;
then they took him and threw him into the cistern,
which was empty and dry.

They then sat down to their meal.
Looking up, they saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead,
their camels laden with gum, balm and resin
to be taken down to Egypt.
Judah said to his brothers:
“What is to be gained by killing our brother and concealing his blood?
Rather, let us sell him to these Ishmaelites,
instead of doing away with him ourselves.
After all, he is our brother, our own flesh.”
His brothers agreed.
They sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver.


Howard Hawks (Red River)

Dunson: Tell Don Diego, tell him that all the land north of that river's mine. Tell him to stay off of it.
Fernandez: Oh, but the land is his.
Dunson: Where did he get it?
Fernandez: Oh many years ago by grant and patent, inscribed by the King of all of Spain.
Dunson: You mean he took it away from whomever was here before. Indians maybe.
Fernandez: Maybe so.
Dunson: Well, I'm takin' it away from him.
Fernandez: Others have thought as you, señor. Others have tried.
Dunson: And you've always been good enough to stop 'em?
Fernandez: Amigo, it is my work.
Dunson: Pretty unhealthy job.


Book of Genesis, Chapter 37.

Thus says the LORD:
Just as from the heavens
the rain and snow come down
And do not return there
till they have watered the earth,
making it fertile and fruitful,
Giving seed to the one who sows
and bread to the one who eats,

So shall my word be
that goes forth from my mouth;
It shall not return to me void,
but shall do my will,
achieving the end for which I sent it.

Chapter 55.

Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.

Matthew 11: 28-30
Date added:  September 20, 2013.  

R. (see 103:10a) Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Remember not against us the iniquities of the past;
may your compassion quickly come to us,
for we are brought very low.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Help us, O God our savior,
because of the glory of your name;
Deliver us and pardon our sins
for your name’s sake.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.
Let the prisoners’ sighing come before you;
with your great power free those doomed to death.
Then we, your people and the sheep of your pasture,
will give thanks to you forever

through all generations we will declare your praise.
R. Lord, do not deal with us according to our sins.

Psalms, Chapter 79.



R. (1) The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
that give me courage.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
And I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Psalms Chapter 23.


United States

Forty acres and a mule.

This quote needs some explanation.  Forty acres was the basic yeoman farmers agricultural unit in the United States, and a single mule sufficient to farm it.  It was the dream, and indeed the expectation, of recently freed slaves at the conclusion of the Civil War that the United States would grant to them 40 acres, and a mule, in order to make them independent farmers.

The actual origin of the phrase, which was widely used, is obscure, although some attribute it to President Lincoln.  Spike Lee uses the phrase today as the name of his film production company.


George Washington

I had rather be on my farm than be emperor of the world.

George Washington

I know of no pursuit in which more real and important services can be rendered to any country than by improving its agriculture, its breed of useful animals, and other branches of a husbandman's cares.

Date added:  July 29, 2013.


Wyoming Supreme Court

We cannot ignore, as judges, what we know, as men, of the general condition of the country. As residents of the arid region, interested in its business conditions, we know - and as lawyers and judges, deriving our knowledge from reported cases, we know - that there are vast quantities of agricultural land cultivated in the arid region, and made valuable by the use of water, the right to which depends upon a conveyance of the land without mentioning water, water right, or irrigating ditch.  Land and water together are of great value. The value of the land without the use of the water is trivial.  And the conditions are such, in many instances, that, if the owner of the land is deprived of the use of the water to which he has been accustomed, he cannot procure other water. In other instances it can be done only at great expense.  

Frank v. Hicks , 4 Wyo. 502 (Wyo. 1893).


Emiliano Zapata

One of the happiest days of my life is when I made five or six hundred pesos from a crop of watermelons I raised all on my own.

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