The Rural Economy of New England: A Regional Study

By John Donald Black | Go to book overview
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Preface

Above all else, this book is a group product. The actual writing is the author's. But behind it lies a large public effort over the years in the collecting and compiling of data. The author hopes that the agencies that labor at such tasks will feel that the demonstration that this book affords of the use of such data will repay in part his indebtedness to them. Also behind this book lies the whole research effort of the six New England Agricultural Experiment Stations since they were founded, and of the federal research agencies coöperating with them. As an example of the joint federal-state effort that lies behind this book may be named the Coöperative Soil Survey, without which Chapter 11 on "The Soils" of New England would have been only vague generalization. The footnote references will also show large use made of the work of many other agencies and individuals. This book is as good a synthesis as the author could make of the results of a very large volume of work of others bearing on the subject of The Rural Economy of New England, plus those of much hard analysis of his own.

If this book is good, it is therefore good in large measure because the work of others made it possible to be so. It does, however, the author hopes, push out the frontiers of analysis on several salients--such as, for example, in the chapter on "Income from Land Use."

The largest indebtedness, since this is a book on the economy of New England, is of course to those who have worked on its problems in the economics of agriculture and land use. In partial tribute to the high quality of this work, the author has dedicated this book to one of their number, now gone, whose thinking and leadership were transcendent.

The writer believes that no teacher or student of agriculture, forestry, or land use in any institution of learning in New England can afford not to read this book intensively; nor any public servant laboring earnestly in these fields; nor any leaders in coöperative or other organizations operating in the region; nor any business leaders concerned with the future of New England and their part in it.

It would also be excellent if many in the same groups in other regions, especially in the East, would, first, read the book carefully, and then ask

-vii-

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