Drying Corn and Canning Tomatoes During the Great Depression


| 8/29/2011 12:47:05 PM


Dried Ears of CornThis story is from Doris Zicafoose, submitted as part of our Wisdom From Our Elders collection of self-sufficient tales from yesteryear. 

Preserving food was a big part of our summers. I remember a time or two when my folks tried drying corn. My dad found a metal signboard and they spread the corn we had cut off the cob on the sign and put it out in the hot Oklahoma sun. It had to be covered with cheesecloth to keep the bugs off and if a rain shower appeared, we had to hurry and bring in the corn. But was it ever worth it! That was the most delicious corn; it had a distinctive flavor, very different from canned or fresh corn.

When my mother bought the pressure canner from one of Dad’s really good horse trades, it was a real blessing. We had been canning tomatoes and fruit with a water bath canner. But the pressure canner meant we could can other vegetables. When my sister and I became active in 4-H Club, we won many blue ribbons in the county fair with our pressure-canned vegetables!

The depression of the 1930s was a hard time in which to grow up, but I cannot be too bitter about our family’s lack of money. There were more important things like a loving family, loyal friends, and 60 acres of field and pasture for children to roam over, that more than compensated for the lack of material goods. We always had horses to ride and a bit of fertile earth for a garden. With God’s help we made it through the hard times of the Great Depression.

Photo Credit: Fotolia/mkm3 




Please send email submissions to Letters@MotherEarthNews.com with the subject line "Elder Wisdom" or send mail to: attn: Heidi Hunt, Re: Elder Wisdom, Mother Earth News, 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609.





Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).


Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters