I never really took James J. Hill for a Malthusian, but this article in the January 28, 1909 Milford Mail (Milford, IA) certainly paints him as one. Hill's argument was basically that there would be too few farmers for a fast-growing American population.

To reflect on the progress made in the United States during the first half of the 20th century is pretty awe-inspiring. Intelligent people with opposing opinions could argue for hours whether this was despite or because of 2 world wars and the Great Depression. You can read the entire piece from the Milford Mail with Hill's predictions below.

They must learn to farm better. Intensive farming is inevitable. In very truth, two blades of grass must grow where but one grew before, and land that now produces only one bushel of wheat must produce two. And farmers must learn to handle their products more wisely after they are produced. There must be no waste either of substance or value.

Photo of James J. Hill from the Library of Congress.

1909 Jan 28 Milford Mail - Milford IA Pa Leo Future

Previously on Paleo-Future:

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