Wisconsin History Day By Day

Related Web Sites:
Wheat once 'king' of regions crops

The Rise of Dairy Farming

Necessity, not design, brought dairying here

Read More About It

"The Rise and Decline of the Wheat Growing Industry in Wisconsin" by John G. Thompson


chinch bug

Interesting Fact:

In 1870, Dane County had 239,232 acres devoted to wheat production. By 1890, the acreage had dropped to 24,990.

Study Questions:

  • What farming practices became more popular with Wisconsin farmers beginning in the 1870's?
  • How does soil become exhausted?
  • What were other reasons (besides soil exhaustion, the chinch bug and bad weather) why farmers moved away from wheat?

    U.S. historical events that occurred on October 13:

    1792: The cornerstone of the White House is laid.

  • October 13

    Historical Highlight:
    1871: Wheat farming began to decline as the state's principle farm product due to bad weather, soil exhaustion and the chinch bug. By 1900, most farming would move to other crops.

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