Marge and KC Caldwell, who picked strawberries as children, July 21, 1999. Photo: Patrick Garrett
Strawberries in the First Person
An oral history of the once-thriving strawberry
industry in southwestern Missouri, this project focuses on
interviews with individuals who lived through the years during
which the title "Strawberry Capital of the World' was passed
between several towns in the region. At the height of production,
more than 10,000 pickers worked in the area between April and June
every year. The strawberry empire, which encompassed offshoot
industries such as ice cream, jams and jellies, and even wine,
marketed its products under brand names such as Ozark Aroma, Loving
Cup, and Mountain Maid. Today the empire has disappeared, but its
story remains to be told from the point of view of the people who
worked in the fields, packing houses, and shipping yards.
Interviews are accompanied by photographs an audio tape of the
interviews, as well as written transcriptions.
Originally submitted by: Roy Blunt, Representative (7th District).
The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.