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Chapter 10
Recognition Given Grange Policies, Objectives, National Position

Over the years, as the Grange grew in prestige, stature, and practical help to farm families, it became the recipient of glowing commendations.

The members, in their own way, commend their Grange Subordinate, Pomona, state, and national officers for outstanding accomplishments, but from the outside-from national and international leaders-have come messages of deep interest in its activities, and appreciation indicating how the Grange has lived up to its birthright.

Only a few of these heartfelt statements can be included here-it would take a publication as big as this to quote them all. For example, every President of the United States from Ulysses S. Grant to Lyndon B. Johnson has been friendly to the Grange and each, in strong public statements, has endorsed Grange activities, ideals, and contributions to the American way of life and progress. Two Presidents have attended Annual Sessions of the Grange. Since the very beginning, the White House has continuously encouraged Grange officers and members in their efforts to bring about better conditions for farmers and their communities.


"I have always had the highest regard and respect for your great organization. I have many dear and close friends in the National Grange-including your Master, Herschel Newsom. For many years-in Congress and the Senate, and now as President-I have valued his counsel. I have never found it to be other than wise, thoughtful and responsible. Yours is a record and a history that are rich and constructive.

"The National Grange has been a unifying force in rural America for nearly a century. It has sought to educate farmers and non-farmers alike on the need for a strong farm family, agriculture and a prosperous and stable rural America. Yet, while you have been the advocate of the nation's farm families, the National Grange has never demanded for farmers that which was not also in the public interest.

"Your leadership in rural America has never been more indispensable than it is today. The one-third of our people who live in rural America must be full participants in the great society that together we shall build. We seek parity of income for farmers, and we shall seek this goal within the framework of commodity programs designed to strengthen and improve farm income. As part of the effort to improve the incomes of farmers we shall seek particularly to continue to strengthen markets abroad for U.S. food and fiber . . . ."


"The thousands of Grange halls which dot the nation, all of them community centers for civil, spiritual and social activities, continuously enrich our open society. The counsel of Grange leaders, and the cooperation and understanding of member families, are vital to the operation of national farm programs dedicated to strengthening the family farm system under which our agriculture has become the most productive of all time.

"Through the 95 years of your organization's history, Grangers have been concerned with the responsibilities of total citizenship as well as the problems and the progress of agriculture. I am confident this philosophy will prevail in the challenging and promising days ahead."


"A critical test for any organization is the challenge of a national emergency and the demand made on its members for quick and full service to the country. This is a test which the National Grange has met with distinction. In times of peace, also, it has proved a vital force for the welfare of agriculture and the Nation. The Grange, through the years, has earned the respect and appreciation of America."


"Who more than a boy who grew up on a farm and who was afterwards an active farmer realizes the value of the work of the National Grange- Its contributions to the American farmer and to farm life generally have been beyond measure. I am proud of my membership in so constructive a body."


"For many years I have been a member of the Grange. I have felt at home in it because it embodies the fine flavor of rural living which I myself have known and loved. Beyond this, it has been an instrument for expressing in useful activity the highest sentiments and deepest loyalties of Americans."


"The Grange not only aids in realizing the conception of a rich and rounded rural life, but helps to build into our national fiber the ideals of sound citizenship and patriotic service. It is clearly one of the most salutary forces in American Life."


"The progressive conservatism of the Grange and its sensible way of considering farm problems and presenting farm needs has given it a position of influence in the Nation and has led those in positions of responsibility to listen to the views of the Grange with consideration and respect."


"The spirit of fraternity and cooperation which is so much a part of the philosophy of the Grange makes this organization more than an economic institution. Actually, the Grange represents the social, spiritual, and economic aspects of rural life. It has been and continues to be a constructive and valuable force in the life of this nation."


"The Grange's traditional objectives . . . character building, encouragement of education, promotion of sound legislation, and the ready acceptance of individual and community responsibility . . . are known and appreciated by all who are working for the betterment of agriculture and the social, cultural and economic development of rural America.
"The Grange's active support of America's efforts to solve the world food crisis without jeopardizing the domestic farm economy lends new dimensions, greater stature and more significance to that organization.
"American agriculture's importance in achieving international peace and cooperation cannot be minimized, for to achieve those goals the levels of nutrition and the standards of living must be elevated for all the peoples of the world.

"The thrust the National Grange is helping to give this all-important effort is both recognized and welcomed by the Secretary of Agriculture, and now, as the Grange nears its 100th Annual Session, I offer my enthusiastic congratulations and best wishes."


"The National Grange is part of our American heritage of freedom, initiative and courage. You have fought valiantly for those principles which have made America great. You stand as a beacon of strength, working not alone for the America of today but also the America of tomorrow.

"The principles exemplified by the National Grange are today greatly needed by America. The increasing lawlessness, civil disobedience and extremism, both of the left and right, are weakening our Nation. Vigilantism, draft card burnings, anihilist disrespect for law and order, seriously injure our cause. We need an increased awareness of our responsibilities as citizens. Each person in a free society must be willing to do his share.

"We in the FBI appreciate the steadfast cooperation of the National Grange. Only in this cooperative endeavor can we keep our country free."


"I think the Granges are very useful to the rural communities and have contributed a great deal to rural life."
(Editor's Note: "As Others See Us" is an excellent booklet compiled in 1962 by the Washington County Pomona Grange No. 58 of the State of Indiana and dedicated to National Master Herschel D. Newsom and Blanche Newsom, which has scores of quotations from national and local leaders about the Grange.)


Year after year, governors throughout the country proclaim a given week as "Grange Week," urging citizens of all communities to cooperate in its observance. This quotation from a Proclamation by Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller, of New York, is typical of the sentiments and language used by leading governors in calling attention to the prestige, public appreciation, and service today of Subordinate, Pomona, and State Granges:

"For almost a century the Grange, in New York and elsewhere, has been one of our most valued and valuable institutions.
"Some years ago its merits were described as follows: `The Grange is a great farm fraternity: building character; developing leadership; encouraging education; promoting community betterment; instilling an appreciation of high ideals; teaching through work and play the value of co-operation and service in the attainment of happiness.'

"The definition still holds good. In the Empire State the Grange has been a vital force in legislation, promoting laws for the protection of the interests of those engaged in agriculture, as 'well as others.

"The organization has also rendered admirable service by promoting neighborliness in rural neighborhoods. This in turn has made our whole State a closely knit community, with consequent benefits enhancing the prosperity and prestige of the State."

In 1966, 35 Governors in Proclamations containing tributes to the ideals and program of the Grange asked public observance of Grange Week, April 17-23. Grange Week in 1967 will be April 16-22.

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