Some consider American agriculture as one of the wonders of the modern world. In this book Walter Ebeling tells its story. Professor Ebeling grew up on a farm, loves the soil, and had the good fortune to have been closely associated with the land in all its aspects. Beginning with a brief history of why and how preagricultural peoples changed from hunters and gatherers and eventually became tillers of the soil, Professor Ebeling then deals with the seven geographic regions of the United States--from the East to California--giving the history and present status of agriculture for each reason. Although the main thrust of The Fruited Plain is the drama, romance, and excitement of the American agricultural experience, Professor Ebeling is concerned with the environmental, ecological, and sociological aspects of agriculture and its supporting industries. He discusses environmental problems in America that began when the Indians' "shifting" agriculture (allowing for long periods of soil restoration) was replaced by the white man's permanent agriculture. He examines the modern technology for a successful and environmentally viable permanent agriculture and how it can be implemente on a much larger scale. The questions asked--and answered--are what are the principal environmental problems? What is being, and/or can be done about soil erosion? Scarcity of water? Urban encroachment on agricultural lands? What directions can be taken by benevolent technology? Does technology have remedies for land that is susceptible to water erosion and loss of topsoil? Likewise, pollution and environmental degradation resulting from excessive use of pesticides? Our society much recognize the importance of protecting our agricultural resources, and Professor Ebeling, in this monumental book, gives many suggestions on how to accomplish the sustained utilization of America's great resource--the farmlands. This title is part of UC Press's Voices Revived program, which commemorates University of California Press's mission to seek out and cultivate the brightest minds and give them voice, reach, and impact. Drawing on a backlist dating to 1893, Voices Revived makes high-quality, peer-reviewed scholarship accessible once again using print-on-demand technology. This title was originally published in 1979.