In 1948, a relief program was started called Christian Rural Overseas Program (CROP). It began as a relief program for 43 war-stricken foreign countries. Daviess County also participated. The program was sponsored by American churches; however, there were many farm organizations, civic and service clubs, and countless other cooperating individuals that wanted to be included.

Contributions made to the program were distributed to those in need such as children, orphans, widows, the aged, those hospitalized, youth and pre-tubercular clinics.

Contributions in Daviess County were to be made in wheat, soybeans, or cash. The county’s quota was for two carloads of wheat or approximately 3,000 bushels, the equivalent in cash being $6,000.

The county committee suggested it would be better for them if the people contributed cash. The program was to be in force until every person in the county had been solicited. It was said concerning the crop donations that “we can raise a crop every year, but people die of starvation only once.”

It was believed there wasn’t a single group in the county that wouldn’t give if the members actually realized the starvation and disease that existed abroad at that time. With inflated prices, it was almost impossible for millions to purchase the very necessities of life. Approximately 90% of the people wanted to give the program a chance and were giving cash rather than grain.

The county quota of $6,000 was to be used by the national CROP office in Chicago to purchase wheat, soybeans, cotton or dried milk products to be sent to four overseas countries where there was the greatest need.

— researched, written and presented by Wilbur Bush, Gallatin, MO