Sunday, February 13, 2011


OK, the picture of Eli Whitney yesterday should have clued you in that this was going to be Cotton Week here at OPOD. You see, all those riverboat pictures yesterday really put me in a Southern State of Mind, and I was taken back to the days of my childhood. Most of you probably don't realize that I grew up on a Cotton Plantation, and I spent the earliest days of my childhood picking cotton.

Now, it is a little bit of an exaggeration to say that I grew up on a Cotton Plantation. Really, I grew up on a Farm/Ranch that grew cotton. Also, by the time I came along, most of the cotton was picked with a combine. However, there still was a little cotton picked by hand, and I did go along a row dragging a big bag picking cotton bowls, but I think it was not so much that my help was needed as my dad wanted me to learn early in life that there were better things to do than pick cotton.

Anyway, I really love the picture above, showing women sorting some cotton. I am really not exactly sure what they are doing. There are bales in the background, which tells me that they are at or near the gin. The cotton gin can take the raw cotton bolls in at one end, and then strip the hard covering off, take the seeds out, and then compress into bales. I am not sure what the manual sorting is that the women appear to be doing.


  1. Maybe they are picking out things that the cotton gin missed.
    That sure is a lot of loose cotton. They better hope that a strong wind doesn't come through, what a mess it would make.

  2. It's boll. Not bowl.
    That's why they're called boll weevils.
    I love your page. Read it every day!

  3. So the name of that college football game is a play on words?


  4. LOL @ Anonymous John


  5. Just watched a documentary yesterday stating that it took a slave 1 hour to sort one pound of cotton prior to Mr. Whitney's contribution. However, the cotton gin made more slaves necessary to grow more of the fiber.

    "She's mean and she's evil like a little ol' boll weevil."

  6. How come you don't have an option for wool in your poll?

  7. I actually picked cotton one summer on my uncle's farm in Texas when I was a kid in the 1950s. It was a lot of work for a little money :-(

  8. I still have a scar on my finger from slicing it open while picking cotton at the Agrirama in Tifton, GA (Georgia’s Museum of Agriculture and Historic Village, it's fabulous). That would have been a rough job. I love driving to my uncle's house in south Georgia when the cotton's ready but hasn't been picked, it's cool looking.


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