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South Carolina's Agricultur
Resources Must Be
To the Chairman of Each County Committee for Civic Preparedness:
Dear Sir: The Commission and the Campaign Committee for Civic
Preparedness held a joint meeting in Colunbia on April 10th, at which a
day of inaugurating in your county a campaigi movement for civic
preparedness for war was designated and speakers representing the
State organization were selected.
The Farm Demonstration Department of the National Government
will furnish an agricultural speaker in addition, and it would be well for
you to see the services of one or more local speakers for short talks.
You 1 be expected to advertise this meeting and secure the
largest possible attendance and contribute in every way to its enthusi
After the county meeting the speakers representing the State
organization will meet with you for a conference as to your plans for a
vigorous countywide campaign.
You will be expected to hold, in the shortest possible time, meetings
in every church and school house in the county, secure the best possible
speakers for arousing effective enthusiasm and co-operation at these
meetings; you will be expected to secure the hearty co-operation of
every available agency-churches. schools, boards of trade, farmers'
associations, benevolent associations, labor unions, women's clubs, etc.
-for your campaign. Your campaign must bring to the whole people a
realization of the fact that the world is facing a famine-that the suc
cessful prosecution of this war depends fully as much upon the produc
tion and conservation of food in the United States as it does upon any
military action which can be taken by this country. The people must be
made to realize that the duty of responding to the call of our Nation and
State for the production and conservation -of foodstuffs is just as patri
otic, and under present circumstances will prove just as effective from a
military standpoint, as actual service with arms.
The State Commission for Civic Preparedness suggests the follow
ing programme, which may-be modified by the judgment of your com
mittee to suit varying conditions in the different sections of the State.
First, urge the immediate planting of such crops as will in the
shortest possible time furnish food for man and beast, and thus stop the
drain upon the depleted National food reserves which our State is now
making. The duty of every family to plant and cultivate a garden must
be stressed. The following vegetables are suggested:
Sweet potatoes (plants can be secured at once at about $2 per 1,000).
Two hundred plants, planted 18 inches apart in four-foot rows on good
soil, should produce six to ten bushels by July 15 or August 1.
A single garden row each of okra, tomatoes, snap beans, pole beans
should be planted now and duplicated a month later.
Garden corn, squashes and the various greens are all easy to grow
and should be planted in succession in quantity according to the size of
the garden, properly worked and fertilized. One-eighth of an acre will
supply the average family with an abundance and great variety of veg
etables during the entire summer and fall.
Land owners should urge their croppers and merchants their cus
tomers to plant gardens and the seeds should be furnished to those who
are unable to buy.
Every farmer should be urged to plant at least one-quarter of an
acre each. of sorghum and early yellow dent corn (Leaming variety
suggested) per horse or cow owned, and this will furnish ample feed in
July and August. Every farmer should put in at least one acre of sweet
potatoes per horse, and land owners should construct potato houses,
built according to government specifications, for curing and storing
this crop for their tenants.
Cow peas and soy beans should be liberally planted for human and
animal food. Early varieties of cow peas planted at once will furnish
delicious green peas in eight or ten weeks.
Every farmer shouid. be induced to increase his acreage of field
cor a ma evban ho u nl he plnted not later than May 1 in
al, Industrial and Economic
Mobilized to Meet
every acre of corn. They will not reduce the corn yield and may be
expected to produce 15 to 30 bushels per acre of a splendid nitrogenous
Bulletins on velvet beans, potato houses, etc., will be furnished by
the Farm Demonstration agents in each county.
The merchants of your county must be made to realize that their
co-operation is absolutely necessary for the success of this campaign.
Unless supplies of the necessary seeds and of cans and jars for canning
are available, much of the effect of our work will be neutralized. Whole
hearted co-operation from all the people, in fact, is vital if the State is to
do the necessary and patriotic work which the National and State.
authorities have called on us for.
There is a great shortage of some kinds of seeds, and the merchants
may be unable to secure a full assortment of those recommended. Sub
stitutions, however, can usually be made without seriously affecting the
The two most effective agencies which may be used for our cam
paign are the churches and the schools. Governor Manning has asked
all the ministers in South Carolina to take up and advocate in their
sermons, food production and conservation. It would be well to hold a
meeting of the County Teachers' Associations (both white and colored)
and urge the teachers to enter wholeheartedly into.the work. Patriotic
songs should be frequently sung by the schools, short talks on the war
aad the national situation should be given and the patriotism of the
children should be stimulated in every possible way. It must be made
plain to each child that he has a part in the programme for national pre
paredness for war. We suggest that a society be formed in each school
called "Volunteer Service League," into which shall be enrolled all chil
dren who will volunteer for the production and conservation of food
stuffs. Each member of this society should pledge himself or herself
to cultivate a small garden or corn patch or to help (so many hours per
week) in the cultivation of the home vegetable garden or in attention to
the live stock on the farm or to raise a pig or some chickens.
In addition to this, they should pledge themselves not to waste a
crumb of food and to use their influence to stop all food waste in their
homes. They should be made to understand that now, when the Nation
needs every ounce of surplus food for war purposes, it is nothing less
than criminal to throw away provisions of any kind. It is a common
sight around most of the school houses of the State to see children eat
half their lunches and dump th e rest on the ground. No more food
should be prepared for the family or brought to school than, can be
entirely consumed. If this were done, probably 25 per cent. of the food
consumption of the State would stop.
Your committee should co-operate with the negro preachers and
teachers to secure the adoption of this programme. Without their help
our campaign can be but partially successful. Meetings should be
arranged at negro churches and school houses and white speakers should
be furnished wherever desirable. In some counties it will be necessary
for you to appoint subcommittees in different townships in order to
make your campaign most effective. This should be done wherever it
The effectiveness of this campaign for civic preparedness for war
will denend almost entirely on the work of the county committees. The
Commi~ssion can do little except start the campaign and furnish you with
a few speakers, some literature and some advice. We are going to
count on the patriotism and unselfish service of your committee to make
a conspicuous success of your county campaign to the end that your
people will do their full duty to the State and Nation at this crisis.
Very truly yours,
DAVID R. COKER,
Chairman South Carolina Commiission
JOE SoPARS Secretary. for Civic Preparedness for War.