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A Golden WeedTobacco and Environment in the Piedmont South$
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Drew A Swanson

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780300191165

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300191165.001.0001

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Bright Leaf, Bright Prospects

Bright Leaf, Bright Prospects

Making Peace With The Idea of Yellow Tobacco

(p.82) Three Bright Leaf, Bright Prospects
A Golden Weed

James C. Scott

Yale University Press

This chapter discusses the expansion of the bright leaf tobacco culture. By the 1840s, Caswell, Halifax, and Pittsylvania counties had an active contingent of modernizing planters' and farmers' intent on spreading the message of agricultural reform across the Southside. While the message of agricultural reform initially challenged the development of bright tobacco, in the end reform advice would encourage the new crop's diffusion. Following the Civil War, bright tobacco culture would contribute to many of the conditions that antebellum reformers feared—from catastrophic soil erosion to a decline in farm diversity and profits—but the reformers' message actually stimulated the prewar growth of the crop.

Keywords:   tobacco cultivation, tobacco farming, bright tobacco, tobacco culture, agricultural reform

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