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A Sand County Almanac


This book explores American landscapes. It is a stunning and classic tribute to our land, and a challenge to protect the world we love.

Farmer Will Allen and the Growing Table


Will Allen is no ordinary farmer. A former basketball star, he's as tall as his truck, and he can hold a cabbage - or a basketball - in one hand. But what is most special about Farmer Will is that he can see what others can't see. When he looked at an abandoned city lot he saw a huge table, big enough to feed the whole world.

Farms Long Ago


Provides a history of farming including a description of how farm buildings were, what farm tools were used, how farmers would get water, how crops were planted and picked, what farm animals were used and raised, and how farmers survived harsh years.

Tomatoes, Potatoes, Corn & Beans


This excellent book describes how foods from North and South America changed eating around the world. It focuses on corn, beans, peppers, peanuts, potatoes, tomatoes, and chocolate but also includes other foods that originated in the Americas. Can you imagine Italian food without the tomato? Indian curries without the pepper? German or Irish food without the potato? Corn is now the most widely grown grain in the world. This book details the history of those transitions and is illustrated with historic artwork and modern photos. For anyone wishing to understand the real gold found in America, this book is an essential read.

A Farm Through Time


This text presents the history of a farm from medieval times to the present day. It aims to provide and insight into how ancestors lived, and how farming has changed the landscape over the centuries. Half-page flaps reveal inside farm buildings.

A Picture Book of George Washington Carver


Biography of the African American scientist who overcame hardship to make important discoveries in the field of agriculture.

A Pocketful of Goobers: A Story About George Washington Carver


A Pocketful of Goobers teaches about the scientific efforts of George Washington Carver. Learn about his life and about his production of more than 300 uses for the peanut.

A Weed is a Flower


A depiction of the life of George Washington Carver, showing his love and affinity for plants (including weeds).

Black Pioneers of Science and Invention


A readable, perceptive account of the lives of fourteen gifted innovators who have played important roles in scientific and industrial progress. The achievements of Benjamin Banneker, Granville T. Woods, George Washington Carver, and others have made jobs easier, saved countless lives, and in many cases, altered the course of history.

Black Women in Science: A Black History Book for Kids


Throughout history, black women have blazed trails across the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Black Women in Science brings something special to black history books for kids, celebrating incredible black women in STEM who have used their brains, bravery, and ambition to beat the odds. Black Women in Science stands out among other black history books for kids?featuring 15 powerful stories of fearless female scientists that advanced their STEM fields and fought to build a legacy. Through the triumphs of these amazing women, you’ll find remarkable role models.

Buzzing with Questions: The Inquisitive Mind of Charles Henry Turner


The curiosity of the first African American entomologist Charles Henry Turner--a scientist who studied bugs--shines in this nonfiction picture book, which showcases his ideas and discoveries about ants, bees, and other insects. Charles Henry Turner's mind itched with questions. Fascinated by animals, bugs, and crustaceans, Turner studied their lives. When books didn't answer his questions, he researched, experimented, and looked for answers on his own, even when faced with racial prejudice. Author Janice Harrington and artist Theodore Taylor III capture the life of this scientist and educator, highlighting his unstoppable curiosity and his passion for insects and biology. The extensive back matter includes an author's note, timeline, bibliography, source notes, and archival images.

Century Farm


A look at a Wisconsin dairy farm owned by the same family for four generations. The current owner tells the story and weaves family history into the descriptions of early day operations. While the author details the many changes that have taken place in the past century, readers are also reminded that many things remain the same.

Change in Agriculture


American agriculture changed radically between 1820 and 1870. In turning slowly from subsistence to commercial farming, farmers on the average doubled the portion of their production places on the market, and thereby laid the foundations for today’s highly productive agricultural industry. But the modern system was by no means inevitable. It evolved slowly through an intricate process in which innovative and imitative entrepreneurs were the key instruments.

Doing Her Bit; A Story About the Women's Land Army of America


This is a story based on a real-life member of the 1917 Woman's Land Army of America. By doing her bit for the war effort, Helen does what women have done for hundreds of years: make a difference while making history.

Eating the Plates; A Pilgrim Book of Food and Manners


When the pilgrims came to America, there were no stores. Hunting, gathering, growing, and preparing food was a full-time job. This fascinating account of what the pilgrims ate and how they spent their days shows that they were real people, doing their best to make a life in a place that seemed strange to them. Included are recipes to make a complete pilgrim dinner.

Eli Whitney and the Cotton Gin (Graphic Library)


Eli Whitney and the Cotton Gin recalls this important inventor and invention in dramatic graphic novel format. When the number of American cotton mills grew, so did the need for clean cotton. Eli Whitney studied the type of cotton that grew in the South and invented a machine that could quickly remove its green, sticky seeds. Inside this book, discover how Whitney created the cotton gin and how this invention changed the industry.

Esperanza Rising


Esperanza thought she'd always live a privileged life on her family's ranch in Mexico. She'd always have fancy dresses, a beautiful home filled with servants, and Mama, Papa, and Abuelita to care for her. But a sudden tragedy forces Esperanza and Mama to flee to California and settle in a Mexican farm labor camp. Esperanza isn't ready for the hard work, financial struggles brought on by the Great Depression, or lack of acceptance she now faces. When Mama gets sick and a strike for better working conditions threatens to uproot their new life, Esperanza must find a way to rise above her difficult circumstances-because Mama's life, and her own, depend on it.

Farmer George Plants a Nation


Besides being a general and the first president of the United States, George Washington was also a farmer. His efforts to create a self-sufficient farm at Mount Vernon, Virginia mirrored his struggle to form a new nation. Excerpts from Washington's writings are featured throughout this book, which also includes a timeline, resource section, and essays on Washington at Mount Vernon and his thoughts on slavery.

Farming Then and Now


Imagine you could travel back in time. What would a farm be like one hundred years ago? How are farms different today? Let's step back in time.

Fifty Years of Disruptive Innovation


Fifty more years from now, regardless of what technological changes come in the way we communicate, this book will still function as it was intended. It’s the simple story of how Kinze Manufacturing fought the industry giants and grew to one of the largest privately held farm equipment manufacturers in the world.

Food and Farming Then and Now


This title examines different types of foods eaten and how they were produced from the olden days to the present.

Full of Beans; Henry Ford Grows a Car


Henry Ford made cars, but this story isn't just about his cars. It's about one car and a lot of soybeans. Ford incorporated soybeans into every part of his life: he ate beans, he wore beans, and he wanted to drive beans. So Ford created his most innovative car yet--one that was full of beans.

George Crum and the Saratoga Chip


An account of the life and career of George Crum, a biracial chef who is credited with the invention of the potato chip at a Saratoga Springs, New York, restaurant in 1853. Based on historical records. Growing up in the 1830s in Saratoga Springs, New York, isn't easy for George Crum. Picked on at school because of the color of his skin, George escapes into his favorite pastimes - hunting and fishing. Soon George learns to cook too, and as a young man he lands a job as chef at the fancy Moon's Lake House. George loves his work, except for the fussy customers, who are always complaining! One hot day George's patience boils over, and he cooks up a potato dish so unique it changes his life forever. Readers will delight in this spirited story of the invention of the potato chip - one of America's favorite snack foods. George Crum and the Saratoga Chip is a testament to human ingenuity, and a tasty slice of culinary history.

George Washington Carver


With imagination and intellect, George Washington Carver (1864–1934) developed hundreds of unexpected products from everyday plants. This book reveals what an exceptionally uncommon man Carver was: trailblazing scholar, innovative scientist, pioneering conservationist, and impassioned educator.

George Washington Carver: Agriculture Pioneer: Life Science (Science Readers)


Born into slavery, George Washington Carver worked hard, earned a university graduate degree, and eventually became a world-famous expert on plants. By experimenting with peanuts and other plants, he learned how to make many useful products from them. Carver taught students and farmers how to grow plants without damaging the soil.

George Washington Carver for Kids; His Life and Discoveries, With 21 Activities


Do you want to learn more about George Washington Carver and get some ideas for projects, experiments, and activities at the same time? This is the book for you! Students can learn to create compost, brew ginger tea, create paints using things found in nature, and much more, all while learning about this famous Iowan.

George Washington Carver; Ingenious Inventor (Graphic Library)


Learn about this famous Iowan in a new way by checking out this graphic novel biography of his life. This colorful and dramatic format is a great way to encourage students to read and learn more.

Gregor Mendel; The Friar who Grew Peas


Gregor Mendel explains to children the theory of heredity in simple-to-understand language and examples. Regarded as the world's first geneticist, Gregor Mendel discovered one of the fundamental aspects of genetic science: animals and plants all inherit and pass down traits through the same process.

Has a Cow Saved Your Life?


Millions of people are now safe from Smallpox, a deadly disease. With excellent historical color pictures this book tells the story of how the smallpox vaccine was discovered.

How Iowa Conquered the World


What if Iowa has done more to influence the modern world than any other population group? Turns out it has. In this new book by #1 best-selling author Michael Rank (a native Iowan) find out how this underdog state saved billions of people from starvation in the 20th century.

In the Garden with Dr. Carver


Sally is a young girl living in rural Alabama in the early 1900s, a time when people were struggling to grow food in soil that had been depleted by years of cotton production. One day, Dr. George Washington Carver shows up to help the grown-ups with their farms and the children with their school garden.



Colorful photos and simple text highlight basic geographic facts about the state of Iowa, from its location in the midwest to the diverse regions that exist within its borders.

Iowa History Reader


In this collection of well-written and accessible essays, originally published in 1996, seventeen of the Hawkeye State's most accomplished historians reflect upon the dramatic and not-so-dramatic shifts in the middle land's history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Iowans Who Made a Difference


This book provides short biographies of 150 Iowans who made an impact on agriculture in Iowa.

John Deere


This book outlines the story behind John Deere designing implements for pioneer farmers. The implements being used by pioneer farmers of that day were cumbersome and ineffective for cutting and turning the prairie soil. To alleviate that problem, Deere and his partner designed three new plows in 1838. The plow was so successful that by 1846, Deere and his partner were selling a thousand plows per year.

John Deere, That's Who!


Back in the 1830s, who was a young blacksmith from Vermont, about to make his mark on American history? John Deere, that’s who! Who moved to Illinois, where farmers were struggling to plow through the thick, rich soil they called gumbo? Who tinkered and tweaked and tested until he invented a steel plow that sliced into the prairie easy as you please? Long before the first tractor, who changed farming forever? John Deere, that’s who! Beautiful illustrations?including spectacular landscapes?reflect the time period and bring John Deere's remarkable story to life.

John Deere's Powerful Idea; the Perfect Plow


Learn more about the inventor behind the large company! This book talks about John Deere's life and his work on the moldboard plow.

Levi Strauss and Blue Jeans (Graphic Library)


Levi Strauss and Blue Jeans tells the story of the man who made the first pair of blue jeans and changed the way the world dressed! In the mid-1880s, while adventurers rushed off to California to find gold,Levi Strauss followed with an idea of his own. In dramatic, graphic novel format, this book follows Strauss as he works to create a pair of pants sturdy enough for gold miners. Readers will learn how Levi found that not just gold miners, but hard-working people everywhere wanted the durable pants with the pocket rivets.

Louis Pasteur and Pasteurization (Graphic Library)


Louis Pasteur and Pasteurization recalls this important scientist and his discoveries in dramatic, graphic novel format. In the early 1800s, people did not understand why food spoiled. Pasteur discovered that small germs cause spoilage. He began working on a process that would help food last longer. In this book, learn about the experiments Pasteur conducted and the process of pasteurization.

Mr. Blue Jeans


Mr. Blue Jeans is a 64-page chapter book which tells the story of the life of an immigrant Jewish peddler who founded Levi Strauss & Company, the world's first and largest manufacturer of denim blue jeans.

Mr. Crum's Potato Predicament


When Filbert P. Horsefeathers walks into George Crum's restaurant, he tells the waitress, “I have a hankering for a heaping helping of potatoes.” Fine cook that he is, George prepares a serving of his most scrumptious, succulent and sublime potato wedges, only to have Filbert send them back. “Too thick,” he says. So, George makes thinner wedges. But his picky customer sends them back again. And again. Feeling a bit mischievous, George decides to use his sharpest knife to cut paper-thin potato slices, which he fries until they are crackling and then showers with salt. At last, Filbert is satisfied, proclaiming, “Perfection!” Which they are. Because, quite by accident, George Crum has invented potato chips! This fictional picture book tale by Anne Renaud is based on a real man named George Crum, a cook in Saratoga Springs, New York, in the 1850s, who is purported to have created the first potato chip in response to a demanding customer. Included at the back of the book is a historical note with a list of sources describing the legend and the remarkable and inspiring story of Crum, a trapper of mixed Native American and African American descent, who supplied restaurants with fresh game, then became a chef and successful restauranteur himself. Felicita Sala's gorgeous illustrations accurately portray the historical period but with a lighthearted touch. They work beautifully with Renaud's playful language and quirky characters for a lively and deliciously fun read-aloud. This book is an excellent choice for lessons on inventions and inventors, history, or why we eat the foods we do.

No Small Potatoes: Junius G. Groves and His Kingdom in Kansas


Discover the incredible true story of how one of history's most successful potato farmers began life as a slave and worked until he was named the "Potato King of the World!" Junius G. Groves came from humble beginnings in the Bluegrass State. Born in Kentucky into slavery, freedom came when he was still a young man and he intended to make a name for himself. Along with thousands of other African Americans who migrated from the South, Junius walked west and stopped in Kansas. Working for a pittance on a small potato farm was no reason to feel sorry for himself, especially when he was made foreman. But Junius did dream of owning his own farm, so he did the next best thing. He rented the land and worked hard! As he built his empire, he also built a family, and he built them both on tons and tons and tons of potatoes. He never quit working hard, even as the naysayers doubted him, and soon he was declared Potato King of the World and had five hundred acres and a castle to call his own. From award winning author Tonya Bolden and talented illustrator Don Tate comes a tale of perseverance that reminds us no matter where you begin, as long as you work hard, your creation can never be called small potatoes.

Notable Notebooks


Written in captivating rhyme, the text is sprinkled with lively illustrations. Flip through and see - it looks a lot like the science notebook you'll be eager to start after reading Notable Notebooks. The book gives you four steps for starting your own notebook, plus mini-biographies of the diverse array of featured scientists.

Out of the Dust


This intimate novel, written in stanza form, poetically conveys the head dust and wind of Oklahoma along with the discontent of narrator Billie Jo who relates the hardships of living on her family's wheat farm in Oklahoma during Dust Bowl years of the Depression. ALA notable children's book, ALA best book for Young Adults, SLJ best book of the year.

Outside In; African-American History in Iowa


This book gives and encompassing overview of African-American history in our state, with sections specific to the role agriculture has played in this history. This book covers history from 1838 to 2000.

Pioneer Plowmaker; A Story about John Deere


"The soil may be rich, but we can't pull a plow through it," farmers complained in the mid 1880s. The moist soil of the Midwest stopped any plow they used by sticking to the blade. The farmers thought a plow that could clean itself just couldn’t be made. But John Deere didn't. The young blacksmith had not let impossibility and disaster stop him before, and he wasn't about to now. In a lively and accurate text, biographer David R. Collins presents this hard-working, idealistic man whose steel plow opened up some of the world's richest farmland.

Pollen: Darwin's 130 Year Prediction


How long does it take for science to find an answer to a problem? On January 25, 1862, naturalist Charles Darwin received a box of orchids. One flower, the Madagascar star orchid, fascinated him. It had an 11.5" nectary, the place where flowers make nectar, the sweet liquid that insects and birds eat. How, he wondered, did insects pollinate the orchid? It took 130 years to find the answer.

Right Here on this Spot


Right here on this spot, where today Grandpa drives a tractor in his cabbage field, Indians in ancient times lit their campfires, chipped stone into tools, and then moved on. Time passed, trees grew into a forest, and settlers came from across the ocean to clear the land again and make a new home. Years later, a Union soldier crossing that field lost a button. Grandpa was digging a ditch when he found that button... In graceful words and striking pictures, this book chronicles the changes the centuries bring to one field and offer young readers a vivid slice of history.

Seeds For Change; The Lives and Work of Suri and Edda Sehgal


Seeds For Change documents how Suri and Edda Sehgal, refugees who each escaped dangerous and difficult circumstances as children, came to America as young adults (from India and Germany respectively), met and fell in love, and went on to have more astonishing experiences as talented and visionary business leaders, generous philanthropists, and proud Americans. As a crop scientist, seedsman, and agricultural visionary, Suri became a respected and pivotal figure in the development of the global hybrid-seed industry. He and Edda have shared their resulting good fortune with those in need around the world. Their personal history is a chronicle of remarkable events and people, but most importantly, an enduring lifelong commitment to helping others that is their family legacy.

Sweet Corn and Sushi


This bilingual book about the sister state relationship between Iowa and Yamanashi, Japan, was chosen as the 2004 Iowa Children's Book of the Year. It highlights the importance of the Iowa Hog Lift that brought breeding stock swine to Yamanashi after a devastating natural disaster.

Temple Grandin: How the girl who Loved Cows Embraced autism and Changed the World


When Temple Grandin was born, her parents knew that she was different. Years later she was diagnosed with autism. While Temple's doctor recommended a hospital, her mother believed in her. Temple went to school instead. Today, Dr. Temple Grandin is a scientist and professor of animal science at Colorado State University. Her world-changing career revolutionized the livestock industry. As an advocate for autism, Temple uses her experience as an example of the unique contributions that autistic people can make. This compelling biography complete with Temple's personal photos takes us inside her extraordinary mind and opens the door to a broader understanding of autism.

The Biographical Dictionary of Iowa


Written by an impressive team of more than 150 scholars and writers, the readable narratives include each subject's name, birth and death dates, place of birth, education, and career and contributions. Many of the names will be instantly recognizable to most Iowans. Beyond the distinctive lives and times captured in the individual biographies, readers of the dictionary will gain an appreciation for how the character of the state has been shaped by the character of the individuals who have inhabited it.

The Girl Who Thought in Pictures; The Story of Dr. Temple Grandin


When young Temple was diagnosed with autism, no one expected her to talk, let alone become one of the most powerful voices in modern science. Yet, the determined visual thinker did just that. Her unique mind allowed her to connect with animals in a special way, helping her invent groundbreaking improvements for farms around the globe! The Girl Who Thought in Pictures: The Story of Dr. Temple Grandin is the first book in a brand new educational series about the inspirational lives of amazing scientists. In addition to the illustrated rhyming tale, you’ll find a complete biography, fun facts, a colorful timeline of events, and even a note from Temple herself!

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind - Picture Book Edition


When a terrible drought struck William Kamkwamba's tiny village in Malawi, his family lost all of the season's crops, leaving them with nothing to eat and nothing to sell. William began to explore science books in his village library, looking for a solution. There, he came up with the idea that would change his family's life forever—he could build a windmill. Made out of scrap metal and old bicycle parts, William's windmill brought electricity to his home and helped his family pump the water they needed to farm the land.

The Kid who Changed the World


The Kid Who Changed the World tells the story of Norman Borlaug, who would one day grow up to use his knowledge of agriculture to save the lives of two billion people!

The Man Who Fed the World


Dr. Norman Borlaug, one of the world's greatest heroes, is the most highly-decorated individual of our time. He is credited with saving over a billion people from starvation. Dr. Borlaug is one of five people in history to win the Nobel Peace Prize, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Congressional Gold Medal. In addition, Dr. Borlaug received the Padma Vibhushan, the highest civilian award the government of India can present to a non-citizen. Read more about Dr. Borlaug's life in this award-winning book.

Then and Now Farming


Lively text, entertaining quizzes, and colorful artwork provide a represhing approach to the historical development of various aspects of modern life and technology.

Thomas Jefferson Grows a Nation


Thomas Jefferson was more than a president and patriot. He was also a planter and gerdener who loved to watch things grow - everything from plants and crops to his brand-new nation. In this meticulously researched picture book for older readers, author Peggy Thomas uncovers JEfferson's passion for agriculture and his country. This is Thomas Jefferson as he's never been seen before! Back matter includes an author's note on Jefferson's legacy today; timeline, bibliography; place to visit (Monticello); and source notes.

Tuttle's Red Barn: The Story of America's Oldest Family Farm


In 1632, John Tuttle set sail from England to Dover, New Hampshire. There he set up a farm on seven acres of land. From those humble beginnings the Tuttle family story became America's story. As the Tuttle's passed down the farm, along the way they witnessed the settlement and expansion of New England; they fought in the American Revolution; they helped runaway slaves along the Underground Railroad and sold maple syrup to Abraham Lincoln; they bought the first Model T in Dover; and they transformed the old barn into the thriving country store it is today.

USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service; An Evolving Statistical Service for American Agriculture


This short booklet covers a brief history of American agriculture and how statistics, specifically the National Agricultural Statistics Service, played a role in it.

Women in Science; 50 Fearless Pioneers who Changed the World


A charmingly illustrated and educational book, New York Times bestseller Women in Science highlights the contributions of 50 notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world. Full of striking art, this fascinating collection also contains infographics about relevant topics such as lab equipment rates of women currently working in STEM fields, and an illustrated scientific glossary. The trailblazing women profiled include well-known figures like primatologist Jane Goodall, as well as lesser-known pioneers, such as Katherine Johnson, the African-American physicist and mathematician who calculated the trajectory of the 1969 Apollo 11 mission to the moon.

Women and the Land


A charming book, Women and the Land gives short biographies and portraits of numerous Iowa women involved in agriculture in some form. Each woman's story is unique, and is beautifully portrayed in large, colorful portraits.

A New Coat for Anna


In A New Coat for Anna by Harriet Ziefert, Anna needs a new coat, but her mother has no money, and the stores are empty. The story takes place in the hard times following World War II. Anna's mother barters, directly exchanging goods or services with a sheep farmer, a spinner, a weaver, and a tailor to produce the new coat. 

First Garden


Learn about the history and present use of the White House lawn and gardens with this interesting and thorough nonfiction work. This book also presents factual information on gardening as well as important nutrition guidelines for healthy eating.

The Good Garden


Maria's family are poor Honduran farmers, growing barely enough to eat. Then a new teacher comes to town and shows Maria sustainable farming practices that yield good crops. An inspiring story, based on actual events, that shows us how farms and hopes are transformed as good gardens begin to grow.

The Story of Seeds


This nonfiction chapter book follows seeds from Mendel's garden to our plate. Discover how something as small as a seed can have a world-wide impact. From Iraq to India to an impenetrable seed vault in a Norwegian mountainside, this book speaks to the current ways we think about our food and how it is grown. Readers will discover just how important seeds are to the functioning of our global economy--and how much power we as a world-wide community have to keep seeds around, because once a seed disappears, it's gone forever. With both text and color photos, this book touches on subjects such as seed genetics, the development of new seed varieties, heirloom seeds, and GMO seeds. It also introduces readers to seed scientists such as Gregor Mendel, Luther Burbank, and Nikolai Vavilov.

American Farm Tools; From Hand Power to Steam Power


This extensive book helps to illustrate the technological advances that have helped American agriculture grow and expand.

Grandpa's Tractor


Grandpa Joe brings his grandson, Timmy, back to the site the farm he grew up on and shares his memories. One memory in particular was a shiny, red tractor, now left rusting in a field.

Industrializing the Corn Belt


From the late 1940s to the early 1970s, farmers in the Corn Belt transformed their region into a new, industrial powerhouse of large-scale production, mechanization, specialization, and efficiency. Many farm experts and implement manufacturers had urged farmers in this direction for decades, but it was the persistent labor shortage and cost-price squeeze following WWII that prompted farmers to pave the way to industrializing agriculture. Anderson examines the changes in Iowa, a representative state of the Corn Belt, in order to explore why farmers adopted particular technologies and how, over time, they integrated new tools and techniques.