In Honor of the Centennial Celebration of the Tazewell County Farm Bureauby Representative Aaron Schock
Posted on 2013-03-14
in the house of representatives
Thursday, March 14, 2013
Mr. SCHOCK. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in honor of the centennial
anniversary of the Tazewell County Farm Bureau. Agriculture is a
thriving industry and a way of life for many in Central Illinois, and
the Tazewell County Farm Bureau continues to cultivate the traditional
values of hard work and community involvement cherished by farmers for
the past 100 years.
Much has changed since 1913 when the Tazewell County Farm Bureau was founded as the first organization in Illinois to use ``farm bureau'' in its name. Woodrow Wilson had just been elected president, and American agriculture was in the midst of a Golden Age with demand for farm commodities and land values both at high levels. While steam tractors were used by some more affluent farmers, horse- and oxen-drawn plows were still common on most farms, and would remain the dominant tools of the trade until the 1950s. The Future Farmers of America would not be founded for another 15 years.
Fast forward to today, 100 years later, and agriculture in Tazewell County is still thriving, led by the Tazewell County Farm Bureau. Tazewell County farmers have more than 166,000 acres of farmland in production, producing corn, soybeans, wheat, and alfalfa. The Farm Bureau provides support services to farmers, including starting the organization that today is the Pekin Insurance Company, which provides farmers' insurance for producers across the area. The Farm Bureau also works to carry on the traditions and values of farming to future generations, as well as to ensure that older members of the agriculture community continue to have a voice, through their Young Leaders and Prime-Timers programs. Both programs have been recognized as among the best in Illinois.
The celebration of the centennial for the Tazewell County Farm Bureau is a time to reflect on the triumphs and hardships that agriculture in Central Illinois has seen over the last 100 years, but it is also a time to look forward. American farmers continue to feed the world, and the Tazewell County Farm Bureau ensures that they have a local partner in that effort. For all of the technological advances made in agriculture, nothing can replace the resilient spirit and strong community fostered by the Farm Bureau. I wish them fair weather and sustained success over the next 100 years.