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Gard, Robert Edward / My land, my home, my Wisconsin : the epic story of the Wisconsin farm and farm family from settlement days to the present
(1978)

Of new ways, and of new harvests,   pp. 37-62 PDF (16.1 MB)


Page 62


his own? It is said that insanity is more prevalent
among farmers' wives than among individuals of any
other class. It is true that many a sad-faced farmer's
wife does say, 'My daughter shall never marry a
farmer if her mother can help it.'
    "Another remedy for the dissatisfaction of the
farmer's daughter and his wife, too, would be found
if each could herself be in some way a producer of
money and could have entire control of it. It is such
a comfort to have one's own pocket book. More than
one wife has said to me, not always a farmer's wife,
either, 'I envy you in one respect and that is that you
earn money and can do what you please with it. I
have the best husband in the world, but I do hate to
ask him for every little thing I want.' May it not be
possible in the varied resources of the farm to find
some light, yet remunerative, work which may be
chiefly done, wholly managed by the daughter, the
proceeds to be entirely at her disposal. Washing
dishes, baking bread, ironing, sweeping, the care of
children are very essential in the home, but they do
become monotonous, and the change of occupation
would in itself bring relief. Buttermaking on a small
scale, poultry-raising, bee culture, the raising and
canning of berries, might be profitably engaged in.
The sum total of the proceeds of the farm would be
increased, and the father, when once he had become
accustomed to a division of money, as well as of
labor, would be spared much annoyance. The daugh-
ter would have a business faculty trained, would
learn the value of money, as she can in no other way,
and a healthful, helpful occupation and diversion
would be furnished her."
Speculators and land companies operated everywhere.
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