064 VII PHOTOGRAPHS LW Maintenance Farm Grounds Singles

Pine Mountain Settlement School
064 VII LIFE WORK General Maintenance Farm Grounds I

064 VII LIFE WORK General Maintenance Farm Grounds Photographs

064 VII PHOTOGRAPHS LW  Maintenance Farm Grounds Singles

Milling sorghum at Pine Mountain Settlement, c. 1957.  Jess Patterson to far right. 38 64_life_work_general_farm_grounds_sorghum_038

TAGS: Farm, barn, silo, chickens, William Hayes, farmers, Jess Patterson, eggs, sheep, Ayrshire cows, sorghum molasses, sugar cane, corn, silage, pastures, tractors, livestock pond, cane press, Arthur Dodd, Paul Lynn, Community School, Burton Rogers, farm machinery, 

This photographic journey of the maintenance of the Pine Mountain Settlement School farm in the 1940s and again in the late 1950s is a window into the development of farming activities at the School. The early photographs are most certainly the work of Arthur Dodd, the School Principal and photographer and the later images of sorghum making are most likely the work of Paul Lynn, a teacher and staff photographer in the 1950s. 

One of the more interesting sets of photographs is that associated with the production of  sorghum molasses. Sorghum molasses has a long history at Pine Mountain Settlement School. For example, in an article written by Maria McVay about the trip Katherine Pettit, a founder of Pine Mountain Settlement School, took in 1899. The group were served sorghum with a hearty supper. They had stopped for the evening and  were treated to a mountain supper complete with mountain sorghum

The good people upon whose hands we were thrown cooked a supper for us of eggs, corn pone and sorghum, buttermilk and coffee. No supper at the finest cafe in Cincinnati or elsewhere tasted so good. We ate everything in sight and could have eaten more, and then we longed for sleep.

HISTORIES 1899 A Novel Excursion by Maria McVay

And a note by Burton Rogers, Director in the 1970s, speaks of the continuation of the production of sorghum molasses as it intersected with education. The appreciation of the mountain treat — sorghum molasses by children, was used as an educational tool to encourage the learning. The old tradition of the making of the delicacy was taught to the younger generation who shared in its production. By sharing the art of making molasses with the children, the knowledge was carried forward and they re-connected with early skills and knowledge that that were practical and lasting. Many of these skills lasted into adulthood with many who have passed through the School. After all, who can forget the sweet taste of sorghum on the end of a cane, or the difficult tasks demanded to produce such a sweet treat!

Children enjoyed the weekly Clubs meetings with a choice of about ten activities; school boys stayed after school to work stripping leaves from cane for sorghum molasses-making.

Dear Friend Letter Nov. 1970

Today the making of sorghum molasses is still a labor-intensive effort but it continues at the School. Now, with the latest harvest of sugar-cane and the pressing of the sweet juice, and the boiling of it down into sorghum, the 2020 crop has been processed. A sweet closing of a rather sour year. Call the Pine Mountain Office to see if you can snag a jar of 2020 sorghum for yourself!


DANCING IN THE CABBAGE PATCH The Stir-Off – Sorghum Molasses

FARM Sorghum Molasses Stir-Off





FARM GUIDE to Sheep, Goats, Weaving