This photo was taken in the late ’40’s. It captures an unexceptional moment-barefoot children feeding a mother hen and her chicks. Those little chicks very likely will become our Sunday dinner. I never really liked that whole process-there was a chopping block right there-right where we now are feeding them! I never had to catch one for slaughter, but my brothers would, and then gather up its feet and feathers before laying it gently on the chopping block-with a swift swing of the ax it was done. While that seemed awful-I cringed to see someone “wring” the chicken’s neck. Somehow the hands-on approach seemed much more brutal. So, when someone playfully says, “I’d like to wring your neck” I suggest that you run – run like the wind. I usually got involved with plucking-a huge kettle of hot water would be prepared and immediately following its demise, the chicken was quickly dunked into the boiling hot water. Then I would pull the feathers out, handing off the plucked chicken to someone else to clean. I usually blacked out about then and have no real recollection of what happened next. Most of what I ate as a child was grown in gardens outside my home-meat of any kind met its demise on the premises, or in the woods and rivers surrounding us. I think it is called holistic now-then it was just good people living out the admonition given to Adam after the fall-“In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread”
“The first supermarket supposedly appeared on the American landscape in 1946. That is not very long ago.Until then, where was all the food? Dear folks, the food was in homes, gardens, local fields, and forests. It was near kitchens, near tables, near bedsides. It was in the pantry, the cellar, the backyard.” ―
~Joel Salatin: Folks, This Ain’t Normal: A Farmer’s Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World
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