Agriculture and Natural Resources, Division of (NMAH, SI)
18 cu. ft.: 53 boxes
From 1946 until his death, Kost lived on a farm near Vermont, Ill. He previously had farmed on shares and worked at the Peoria State Hospital, Bartonville, at the Caterpillar Co., and as a bookkeeper. He kept elaborate records of his farm's transactions.
Kost farmed corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay. In the mid-1950s he entered a partnership with the Welch farm, a beef cow/calf, feeder calf, hog operation. In the mid-1960s the Welch farm was sold and Kost bought out his share of the cows/calf operation and transferred it to his own farm. He also rented another farm on the east side of Vermont, Illinois.
Financial records of a family farm in Vermont, Illinois. They are thorough, and document crucial years in the transformation of U.S. agriculture. The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture encouraged larger farmers to expand their acreage, buy machinery, and modernize. Kost took this advice and rented additional land and expanded his operation into livestock. These records offer the historian or economist the opportunity to examine a farm operation in detail.
William C. Kost Farm Records, 1939-1989, Archives Center, National Museum of American History