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The Market Bulletin


The Market Bulletin, a newsletter for farmers and those interested in farming, is published by the West Virginia Department of Agriculture. The Bulletin was begun in 1916 when James H. Stewart was agriculture commissioner. The publication is sent free to West Virginians who request it and is also available online.

The newsletter covers the latest developments in farming techniques, recipes, veterinary and apiary topics; suggests solutions to problems; carries a letter from the commissioner; and runs pages of free classifieds. The most popular part of the Bulletin, these ads cover what farmers want to buy or sell, including equipment, cattle, farms, goats, help, hogs, horses, plants, poultry, and sheep, as well as jobs. The Bulletin was an important information source for back-to-the-land homesteaders of the 1960s and 1970s, and is read by farmers and would-be farmers. The Bulletin also lists miscellaneous sales and carries notifications of farm-related meetings, as well as information on current stock prices and a sales calendar and locator.

Since its inception, the size of the Bulletin has been changed more than once. It first had an over-sized format similar to an old Life or Look magazine. It was cut to compact booklet dimensions in an attempt to keep mailing costs down, and then increased again to its current 8 1⁄2 by 11 format. Today’s Bulletin runs about 12 pages.

Written by Peggy Ross

Sources

  1. Douglass, Gus. Welcome to the Fair!. Market Bulletin. Aug. 1999.

  2. Ross, Peggy. Market Bulletin Smaller Yet Thriving. Morgantown Dominion Post, 4/5/1992.

  3. Ross, Peggy. The Farmer's Friend: The West Virginia Market Bulletin. Goldenseal, (Summer 1993).