Scorching heat. Bitter cold. Relentless wind. No trees. Scarce water. That’s what settlers faced on the Kansas plains. Crawford grew up on a farm in Russell County that his great grandparents homesteaded in 1879. Tales of hardship, humor, and grit merge with details of the enormous changes in mechanization, economics, and political forces as the country transitioned from a mostly rural nation to a mostly urban one.
Crawford's personal story coupled with meticulous research on the evolution of farming from the homestead years to the recent prairie fires describe the birth and transformation of his family farm. The narrative concludes with a thought-provoking discussion of the future of rural communities, the options for farmers, and High Plains farming.
Crawford is a retired physicist who spent his career primarily at Argonne National Laboratory and Oak Ridge National Laboratory. A Fellow of the American Physical Society, he has authored numerous scientific research papers, journal articles, and book chapters. He published his first non-technical book, Ruts, Guts, and a Model T Truck: Cruising the West at 15 Miles per Hour, in 2021.
Both books are now available wherever you buy books.