Over the weekend, the Dawson County Farm Bureau celebrated their 100 year anniversary at their annual meeting.
It was 100 years ago in the winter of 1917 when a group of farmers met at the Dawson County courthouse to form the organization. Dawson County was one of the first in Nebraska to organize for the purpose of sponsoring a County Extension agent who would help share the latest in crop and livestock research from the University of Nebraska research farm (now East Campus) with the county’s farmers and ranchers.
Over the years, as the Farm Bureau became more involved in policy development and lobbied on agriculture issues in the Legislature, it gained a reputation as the “Voice of Reason,” for the state’s farmers and ranchers.
However, Extension and Farm Bureau eventually parted ways after World War II, as the education mission of Extension became even stronger and they were to refrain from political activity.
Guest speaker Barb Bierman Batie discussed both the county history and the role it has played within the state organization, which is also celebrating its centennial in 2017. Batie helped write and edit the Nebraska Farm Bureau centennial history book.
Batie, a Nebraska Sesquicentennial Commissioner, will also discuss highlights of the state’s 150th anniversary of statehood, along with the Farm Bureau history.
Batie has been a member of Dawson County Farm Bureau since 1985 and has served in nearly every office on the county level, including being the county’s first woman president in 1996. She has served on various state committees, most recently on the Centennial planning committee.