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The Impact of John Deere

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The Impact of John Deere

Nowadays more and more people are unaware of where their food comes from. Mankind now lives in an age where technology is the main focus and the rural way of life is becoming a thing of the past. The ability to produce food is so efficient and effective that some people do not even realize how their food gets to their plate. But that was not the case in the 19th century. In 1837, a man named John Deere changed farming forever.

In the coarse of human existence, civilizations have made farming their primary source for food. As long as farming has been around, agricultural implements have been used to farm the land. Scientists believe that the first plows that were used, date back to 4,000 B.C. These plows were simply pointed sticks but nonetheless, they were the pioneers of modern day plows. By 3,000 B.C. the Egyptians invented a plow with a wider, triangular share that turned more dirt in a wider furrow. As the population grew over time, more and more people moved into Europe. The soil contained much more moisture, and required a lot of power to be able to pull plows through it. The Dutch then invented an iron- covered moldboard that cut much better through the earth and greatly reduced the power needed (Drache 2-3).

When colonists from Europe began to settle in America, they quickly recognized that if they were going to survive they needed to farm and produce crops. By 1648 the Virginia colony had an estimated 150 plows. The plows were very expensive and required a lot of power to pull them. By 1780 an Englishman named Robert Ransome patented a cast-iron plowshare. The cast iron share was much better because as it moved through the soil, the share would get sharpened. This greatly improved the efficie...

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...50 there were about 5.9 million acres being farmed in Iowa and Illinois. By 1870 it had risen to 28.7 million acres (Deere). With advancements in technology, instigated by John Deere, the efficiency of the equipment allowed for more acres to be cultivated, and in much less time. And so Malthus was proven wrong in the fact that human population would outgrow man’s ability to grow food. But in his defense I’m sure he never imagined that an acre of land could be tilled with a 560 hp John Deere tractor in approximately 3 minutes. Never before has an acre of land been able to be worked in such a short amount of time. Agriculture has changed dramatically over the last century and surely will continue to improve. Precision farming is the way of the future and efficiency is the key. John Deere truly impacted agriculture and changed the lives of every human being on earth.
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