Farm Bureau

"The Bureau has put forth a strong effort for Better Farming, Better Business and Better Living, to represent the farmer's interest and to develop a permanent system of agriculture..." Annual Report of Weber County      

W. Preston Thomas Portrait
W. Preston Thomas


 W. Preston Thomas worked as Weber County's first agricultural agent from 1915 to 1925. Thomas was a leading proponent of Agricultural Co-operatives.

In 1915, Thomas collaborated with farmers to establish the Weber County Farm Bureau. A year later, he joined with representatives from other counties to officially establish the organization statewide. The state and county bureaus assumed the responsibility of representing the farmers in their efforts to collectively market sugar beets, canning goods and dairy products. The bureaus also enabled members to collectively purchase farm products at wholesale cost. In Weber county Thomas conducted educational programs to teach farmers about co-operative marketing, rural credit, and purchasing. Thomas was instrumental in organizing the Weber Central Dairy a seminal example of a co-operative enterprise.


Utah Farm Bureau Federation Collection, 1920-2004 - Finding Aid

Two-Fold Definition of Farm Bureau: 

  1. To effectively carry out a program of agriculture based on projects, improvements of crops and livestock, control of diseases, sanitation, and improvement of road, social, fair and school conditions.

  2. Cooperative selling and buying only when present purchasing conditions are inadequate or prices are unjust. [1]

Organization and Publications about the Utah Farm Bureau

The Farm Bureau "set in motion some kind of program through which information developed by the Department of Agriculture could be channeled out to farmers.” [2] 

Farm Bureaus: “organizations of farmers who at first were chiefly concerned with improving production on their farms.” [3] 

The Utah State Farm Bureau Federation was founded in late fall of 1916. In 1918 their first effort was to standardize price for sugar beets and wheat through all Utah counties.

Cache County Fair Booth
Cache County Farm Bureau Fair


    "Every town in the county made displays of quilts, rugs, lamps and other articles that go to make better home and communities."

    The Farm Bureau encouraged improving the lot of farmers, their communities as well as their environment.

Relationship between the Extension service and the Farm Bureau

“The following state and college specialists visited the county on request during the year and held series of farm bureau meetings and inspection trips in and otherwise instructed the farmers along their various lines of work:

            R.W Hoggan, State Live Stock Inspector, called to inspect contagious disease, Ben R. Edlredge, State Dairy Specialist, work on silo and silage campaign, Miss Gertrude M. McCheyne, home Economics Specialist of the Extension Divison of the College;”[4]

Farm Bureau News

Annual Report of Farm Bureau in Weber County

“The farm bureau organization is certainly filling the needs of the people in certain of the dry-farm areas, in a social as well as mental and material way. It is filling a real need and the Lockerby bureau took up with the movement very enthusiastically this year. It is practically the only thing they have to fill their social needs. They had dances, picnics, sports, etc. all under the supervision of the farm bureau.” (San Jaun County Report) [5]


Interviews with Farm Bureau Agents

To learn more about the Utah Farm Bureau Federation today

[1] As Farmers Forward Go, A History of the Utah Farm Bureau Federation. USUSCA SCA979p252-Ol8, pg 16.

[2] As Farmers Forward Go. pg 7.

[3] As Farmers Forward Go. pg 8.

[4] Picture Supplement USUSCA SCAP0138 pg 15.

[5] Picture Supplement. USUSCA SCAP0138 10:07:01.