Since the first Western Reserve farmers arrived in the CuyahogaValley, farm children balanced chores with education. On larger farms, parents needed their children's help to manage the farm and sell its products. In addition, children went to school, participated in extracurricular sports and activities, and completed their homework.
On the farm, children had important responsibilities, from milking cows to picking and selling corn at a roadside stand. Their labor affected the success of the family's farm. To earn extra money, teenagers and young adults often got part-time jobs building roads, drilling wells, or working for other local businesses.
Dorothy Vani and her brother Myron Marfut describe their responsibilities on their mother's farm, located on Akron Peninsula Road.
Saturday, Sunday mornings in summertime, horses had to be fed by eight o’clock. By the time I was a teenager, it was like, we don’t care how late you sleep in, but you will be up and out and those horses fed by eight o’clock. So I’d drag myself out of bed at seven o’clock on a Saturday morning, go down and do all the chores, and then come back and just kinda slide right back into bed and sleep until ten or eleven o’clock like most teenagers do.