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“Does It Pay?”


“ . . . . and the Page Man asked the question that enters into every business transaction in these intensely practical days.” – John Kenneth Galbraith

This book is a collection of 214 interviews with farmers in southwestern Ontario while   J. K. Galbraith was the scribe for the St. Thomas Times-Journal. The interviews read like conversations from the past. Read only the article of interest to you at the time or read from cover to cover to get a feel for the times – the frustrations of the farmers with the ever changing standards and regulations or the success and pride of the “Topnotchers” that shines through loud and clear.

A surname index has been included so that readers may find their kin and hear the voices of their grandfathers and uncles. These men speak plainly about conditions on southwestern Ontario farms during a time of great change, which were not always embraced with enthusiasm in the rural community.

Pasteurization and new health regulations had come into force, along with the Clean Seed Act, gasoline engines, electricity and refrigeration just to name a few. All of these came following the largest conflict in the world – The First World War, then the Crash of ’29, prohibition, crop failures, the Great Depression and the prelude to World War II. Throughout these articles, note how some of the problems faced almost a century ago, are still faced today. So much changes, and so much stays the same. Can we learn and improve on our past mistakes? Can we look at mistakes made then and re-invent them for today’s farming community that still face economic challenges? Can each of us take the advice offered by these Topnotchers and apply it to our own situations?

Only time will tell.

I hope you enjoy the read as much as I did.

Jenny Phillips


Digital eBook  - 750 pages - $49.95 Cnd FOB Dutton, ON


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Does it Pay? by John Kenneth Galbraith and Jenny Phillips