At the start of the 20th century, one in seven farmers in the United States was Black. In the decades that followed, however, Black Americans were dispossessed of an estimated 13 million acres of land. Many descendants of Black farmers moved north to seek jobs in other industries, removed from familial agricultural backgrounds.
Now, nearly 100 years later, people of color are leading a resurgence of interest in farming in the Northeast, and yet for these farmers the barriers to starting a farm remain high. Between lending discrimination and rising costs, many obstacles stand in the way of Black Americans looking to own farmland.
The family behind Triple J Farm, a chicken farm in Windsor, N.Y., knows this. That's why they are farming with a message of #MakeFarmersBlackAgain.
James Minton, 85, owns the farm. It's small, at just 20 acres and nearly 300 egg-laying chickens. There is a patch of maple trees from which Minton makes syrup each winter, a barn to hold the cow, and a pond stocked full of fish, where his youngest great-granddaughters like to play.