Farming was once the chief way of life in nearly every country. For example, the typical American
family of the 1700's and early 1800's lived on a small farm. The family raised cattle, chickens, and hogs and grew corn, fruits,
garden vegetables, hay, and wheat. Everyone in the family worked long and hard, but the results were often disappointing.
Most families produced barely enough food for themselves. This situation began to change during the last half of the 1800's—and
it changed remarkably during the 1900's.