MOUNTAIN LIFE AND WORK
Mr. Bailey stressed the importance of developÃ‚Âing the personal resources of the farmer, and pointed cut that entertainment and recreation had an important contribution to make; however, rural recreation and entertainment should express what is best in rural life and should be the proÃ‚Âduct of rural people rather than some cheap im -itation from the city.
Dr. Bailey closed his important work with words worthy of more wide-spread and more sympaÃ‚Âthetic consideration than the next two hectic decades were destined to give them.
We have been living in a get-rich quick age. Persons have wanted to make forÃ‚Âtunes . . . . Persons are now asking how they may live a satisfactory life, rather than placing the whole emphasis on the financial turnover of a business . . . . I think the requirements of a good farmer are at least four: The ability to make a full and comfortable living from the land; to rear a family carefully and well; to be of good service to the community; to leave the farm more productive than it was when he took it.
The year after the publication of Bailey's book, the American Academy of Political and Social Science published a number of articles on "CounÃ‚Âtry Life." Most of them, however, dealt with the economic and material aspects of the rural sitÃ‚Âuation. One discussed the rural home under such sub-heads as the site, geological formation, transÃ‚Âportation facilities, sewerage and drainage, heating and lighting, the cellar, materials, stables. Human relationships in the home were left out of the picÃ‚Âture completely.
In another article in the Annals, Dr. John M. Gillette emphasized the need for new ideals in rural living. The most fundamental factor in any situation, he maintained, is the point of view: "A wholesome point of view makes a wholesome life. A changed point of view changes the life." Ia
si ilar vein, Professor Harold W. Foght, di
imi I isÃ‚Â
"The Country School," stressed the need
cussing, not only of scientific farming, but of a satisfying rural life. Farming should be as profitable as an equal investment in the city would be, ho pointed out, but even this alone would not hold the best people on the farm. "Daily life in the country," he argued, "must first be made more
humanly interesting and wholesome." If country life is lacking in social satisfactions, "people will go where they will get them." Dr. Butterfield writing on "Rural Sociology as a College DisciÃ‚Âpline," stated that "the American rural problem is to maintain upon the land a class of people who represent the best American ideals in their indusÃ‚Âtrial success, in their political influence, in their intelligence and moral character, and in their soÃ‚Âcial and class power."
From the years 1912 to 1916 there were numÃ‚Âerous articles on different aspects of rural life in American periodicals, and despite the distractions in Europe, there was a continuing interest in the movement, as evidenced by the fact that Bailey's Country Life Movement was reprinted in 1912, 1915, and again in 1916.
In November, 1917, a little group of interested people met at Washington, D. C., to consider the general subject, "What are the chief goals in an adequate program of country life?" The two sessions were presided over by Dr. Butterfield, then the president of Massachusetts Agricultural College; in attendance were Miss Mabel Carney, Dr. E. C. Branson, Dr. A. C. True, Dean A. R. Mann, Dr. Warren H. Wilson, Prof. Paul L. Vogt, Dr. P. P. Claxton, and half a dozen others. In informal meetings these leaders deÃ‚Âcided to undertake a careful investigation of the country life through a number of sub-committees. Out of these sessions, and later committee meetÃ‚Âings, came plans for the calling of the First NaÃ‚Âtional Country Life Conference, at Baltimore, in 1919. Strangely enough, to the first session of this First National Country Life Conference came news of the death of Theodore Roosevelt.
The Proceedings of that conference set forth "The Objectives of Country Life" according to the conclusions of its committees. The statement begins with the following paragraphs, which were taken almost verbatim from the address of PresÃ‚Âident Butterfield:
The Country Life interest is the supreme rural interest. The welfare of men and women, of boys and girls, in respect to their education, their health, their neighÃ‚Âborliness, their moral and religious welÃ‚Âfare, is the intrinsic objective of Country Life.
The economic, motive is a worthy and dominant one, and a great rural civiliza-