I have a confession to make. I've ignored the non-population census schedules in my research. (Gasp!) But not anymore. I clicked on the "non-population" census prompt at ancestry.com one evening and a whole new level of insight about my ancestors appeared. Take a look at what I found.
John B Talbott was my great x 3 grandfather farming in Red Bank, Halifax Co, VA in 1880. According to the 1880 Agricultural Census, he owned his farm that consisted of 10 acres of tilled land, 1 acre of permanent meadow, 10 acres of woodland and 40 acres of "other". All totaled he owned about 61 acres of land valued at about 400 dollars. He owned about 125 dollars worth of live stock. He spent $25 dollars in building and repairing fences during the previous year (1879). Interestingly, he did not pay out wages to laborers. I assume his two sons Joseph Merritt and John Robert who were living with him at the time were working the farm as well.
I found the live stock section interesting. Grandaddy John ( as the family referred to him) owned 1 milk cow, 1 calf, 2 pigs, and 4 chickens. He sold 2 cows during 1879. His milk cow(s) produced 75 pounds of butter and chickens produced 20 dozen eggs.
The family grew 30 acres of corn (210 bushels), 2 acres of oats (10 bushels), 5 acres of wheat (21 bushels), 1/2 acre of potatoes (20 bushels), and 4 acres of tobacco (2000 pounds). The farm produced 10 bushels of apples and 20 cords of wood.
What a fascinating glimpse into the family farm. I can't wait to check the other census schedules and follow the family's farm life.