Texas vegetable barons
A new sort of hero for a new age
A few days ago, I had mentioned to Bonnie of frogma that Pat had come from a background of Texas vegetable barons. To be more specific, the Old Soldier had been the son of an entrepreneur who had been a pioneer in the early days of truck farming.
In the early part of the 20th century, land developers enticed people to come to such barren and remote places as the southern tip of Texas, with promises that the land and the climate were close to what Eden had originally offered – eternally warm temperatures, fertile topsoil, and, the developers promised, easy ways of shipping the abundant produce to the frigid North.
In the beginning, it wasn't that easy. The topsoil, it turned out, wasn't all that great. The climate that encouraged plants to grow also encouraged a lot of insects and blight. And the ability to ship vegetables north was not so great at first; it took a while for the railroads to establish reliable lines, and trucks, despite the term "truck farming" being used to describe what the farmers in South Texas were doing, just plain weren't there.
Bonnie, at frogma, has suggested that I write a story or maybe even a novel about the Texas vegetable barons. That might be possible. In Pat's family, there have been incidents that would lend themselves to the broad tapestry of a historical novel, and some other situations that involve personal drama on an individual level. I would certainly have to change a lot of details in order to protect members of the family, but the overall story line would be engaging.
In the past, dramas from Texas have involved oil (Dallas) or cattle (Lonesome Dove). Those industries are not currently in favor, given America's current over-dependence on fossil fuels and obesity epidemic. Perhaps a drama about vegetable barons would be more politically correct.