The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History is looking for stories about the technologies and innovation that have changed American agriculture. On National Ag Day the museum launched a web portal where people can share stories about precision farming, food-borne illness tracking, irrigation, biotechnology and more. This spring – the museum will launch the Agricultural Innovation and Heritage archive. They are reaching out to farmers, ranchers and American agribusiness to preserve America’s agricultural heritage and build a collection that reflects modern agricultural practices. Museum Director John Gray says the story of agriculture is important and complex. He notes 96-percent of Americans were farmers in Jefferson’s time – and that number is less than two-percent today. But despite that – he says productivity has skyrocketed and agriculture has evolved into a technology-driven profession.
The stories, photos and objects collected will play a role in the American Enterprise exhibition – an eight-thousand square foot multimedia experience that will focus on the role of business and innovation in the U.S. from the mid-1700s to the present. Monsanto Company and the United Soybean Board are both supporting the project. The exhibition is scheduled to open in May 2015.
The public can visit americanenterprise dot si dot edu (https://americanenterprise.si.edu) for more details and to participate.