More than a place of work, each farm was a family home. Farming could be risky, and choosing that life for your family was a decision not taken lightly. Raising a family on a farm presented both challenges and rewards. An unsuccessful farm could bring poverty, sacrifice, and starvation. The family's livelihood often depended on uncontrollable and unpredictable factors, such as the weather and length of seasons. A fruitful harvest, however, could mean a bountiful supply of food and extra income. Even after many years on the farm, parents continued to make daily decisions based on the interests of their family's needs.
Living in rural communities often meant more difficult access to education, health care, or other services. On the other hand, farm life instilled a solid work ethic and sense of community. Before electricity, automobiles, and television, farm families entertained themselves with social gatherings and large meals where neighbors could congregate and converse. For those who loved the land, the farm was a wonderful, if sometimes adventurous, place to raise a family.
Women and Children on the Farm
In Their Own Words
Click the topics to hear stories about Cuyahoga Valley life.
Father's Decision to Buy the Farm (39 seconds)
Always Enough Food (1 minute 2 seconds)
Fun with the Family (25 seconds)
Josephine Davis, who grew up on her parents' farm in Brecksville, talks about living through the Great Depression and how her father's decision to move her family to the farm helped them survive. She also describes her love for the farm and the times she could spend with her family.
Mother's Cooking Skills (39 seconds)
A Mother's Role (31 seconds)
Last updated: December 10, 2018