Historic Markers Across Georgia

Cash Crops

Marker ID: NPS 
Location: on Carter Boy Hood Farm Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, Old Plains Highway, Plains, GA
County: Sumter
Coordinates: N 32° 1.563    W 084° 25.937
  32.02605    -84.43228333
Style: Interpretative Sign **
Waymark: None


This fields is a small part of several hundred acres that earned a living for the Carters and the other families who lived here. Like his neighbors throughout southwest Georgia, Earl Carter mixed his plantings of cotton, corn, watermelons, sugar cane, sweet potatoes, and peanuts, hoping for a good price when it came time to haul the harvest to the railroad or cotton gin. Sugar cane grown here was crushed, then boiled down from syrup. Mr Earl sold his "Plains Maid' syrup in many local grocery stores as well as his own commissary.

The Worst Job
Young boys like Jimmy Carter hated "mopping cotton." To kill boll weevils, they mixed arsenic with molasses and water, then walked the rows with buckets and a rag mop, daubing sticky poison onto the cotton buds.

It was a job for boys and not men, and we despised this task.
After a few hours in the fields our trousers, legs, and bare feet would be saturated with the syrupy mess. Jimmy Carter, 1975 Why not the Best?

Erected by Jimmy Carter National Historic Site - National Park Service - United States Department of Interior.