Synchronize with the table of contents  INTRODUCTION

INTRODUCTION :

PROVENANCE:

American Farmland Trust donated the collection to the Denver Public Library in 1998, 1999 and 2000. The collection is open for additional material.

ACCESS:

The collection is open for research.

OWNERSHIP:

The American Farmland Trust records are the physical property of the Denver Public Library. Copyrights assigned to the Denver Public Library for research purposes.

PUBLICATION RIGHTS:

All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from material in the collection should be discussed with the appropriate librarian or archivist. Permission for publication may be given on behalf of the Denver Public Library as the owner of the physical item. It is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained by the customer. The Library does not assume any responsibility for infringement of copyright or publication rights of the manuscript held by the writer, heirs, donors, or executors. Reproduction restrictions are decided on a case-by-case basis.

PREFERRED CITATION:

[Identification of item], American Farmland Trust Records, CONS148, Conservation Collection, The Denver Public Library.

SIZE:

Number of boxes: 48

Audio visual boxes: 7

Photo folio: 1

LOCATION:

CONS148

PROCESSED BY:

Tammi E. Haddad

February 2001

REVISED AND ENCODED BY:

Claudia Jensen

January 2005

Revised, November 2009

PROJECT MANAGER:

Ellen Zazzarino

HISTORICAL NOTE :

The mission of the American Farmland Trust (AFT) is to stop the loss of productive farmland and to promote farming practices that lead to a healthy environment. Since its incorporation in 1980 as a private, nonprofit conservation organization, it has worked at the local, state and federal level to achieve its mission by (1) working to protect the best land through publicly funded agricultural conservation easement programs; (2) promoting effective community planning for growth with agriculture in mind; and (3) encouraging stewardship and conservation practices to keep the land healthy.

During the 1980s, the American Farmland Trust's main motivation for saving farmland was to ensure that the nation had an adequate food supply. In the 1990s, they began giving more attention to the other assets of farmland, such as protecting water quality and providing habitat for wildlife. They also realized that in order to protect farmland, they would need to address the issue of urban sprawl. Through its regional and field offices, the American Farmland Trust works with states and localities in the nation's most threatened agricultural areas, identified in its 1997 report, Farming on the Edge.

At the federal level, The American Farmland Trust worked for the passage of the Farmland Protection Policy Act in 1981, which requires federal agencies to better estimate the impact of their policies and actions on prime farmland. In 1985, an American Farmland Trust report titled Soil Conservation in America: What Do We Have to Lose? helped structure the debate that led to the creation of the federal Conservation Reserve Program. Five years later, the American Farmland Trust fought for a variety of agricultural conservation programs within the 1990 Farm Bill, and in 1996, worked for the landmark Farmland Protection Program, which funds the acquisition of agricultural conservation easements.

The primary means of protecting farmland used by the American Farmland Trust has been through agricultural land trusts, the purchase of agricultural conservation easement (PACE) programs, transfer of development rights programs, tax credit and right-to-farm laws, and agricultural conservation zoning ordinances. The result has been to provide landowners more options when making decisions about their farm, forest or ranch lands.

The Northern Illinois University's Social Science Research Institute serves as the focal point for American Farmland Trust's research efforts. Their reports are available in part through the Farmland Information Center, which includes a Technical Assistance Hotline, community consulting services and an online source, affiliated with U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Library, to provide information on farmland protection and sustainable agriculture.

The American Farmland Trusts membership includes farmers, conservationists, educators, and business people from around the United States. The Board of Directors consists of individuals who represent farming and conservation interests from across the United States. The American Farmland Trust derives its income from member contributions, foundations, corporations and government agencies.

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE :

The American Farmland Trust collection contains material created or collected by staff at the national office from 1979 to 1999. These records include correspondence, memos, and reports related to their work. It includes the files of the President Ralph E. Grossi; Vice President Tim Warman; Senior Vice President for Public Policy Edward Thompson Jr.; material from the reference library; and audio-visual material. The subject matter reflects the goals of the organization to protect farmland through conservation easements, public policy, legislation, regional planning, and sustainable agriculture and development. The regional field office records are not included in this collection. The collection remains open for additional material.

SEPARATED MATERIAL :

Published items in the collection are housed in the Western History/Genealogy Department.

SERIES 1 RALPH E. GROSSI, PRESIDENT BOX 1-12 1979-1999 :

The files of Ralph Grossi pertain to the board of trustees meetings from 1979 to 1999, material about the work of the regional and field offices, annual reports, publications, administrative, and subject files. They include correspondence, planning notes, meeting minutes, reports and newspaper clippings.

SERIES 2 TIM WARMAN, VICE-PRESIDENT BOX 12-23 1979-1998 :

Tim Warman's files include American Farmland Trust work plans, strategic planning, budgeting, federal farm legislation, conservation programs, clean water, sustainable agriculture and wetland reserve programs. The format includes correspondence, memos, notes and reports.

SERIES 3 EDWARD THOMPSON JR. SENIOR VICE-PRESIDENT FOR PUBLIC POLICY BOX 23-36 1979-1998 :

The files from the office of Edward Thompson Jr., Senior Vice President for Public Policy, contain some administrative information, but are primarily related to agricultural conservation easements, research into the cost of community services for farming and urban areas, urban expansion into rural areas, farm credit, the Mississippi River flood, pesticides and nonpoint source water pollution, sustainable agriculture, and property rights issues. Of interest are the "daily diary" printouts, documenting the day-to-day activities of Thompson from 1987 to 1995. In addition, Thompson's files contain transcripts and statements presented at various congressional hearings primarily between 1981 and 1989 and copies of conservation easements, with which the American Farmland Trust was involved.

SERIES 4 REFERENCE MATERIAL BOX 36-48 1979-1999 :

The reference series contains a large amount of newspaper clippings gathered and organized several ways: by region, subject and chronological order. The material concerns not only articles in which the American Farmland Trust was featured or mentioned, but also anything related to agriculture and farmers. From 1991 to 1996, the American Farmland Trust copied and reproduced for staff, bound sets of clippings titled Significant News Clippings, from 1991 to 1995, and Sampling of News Clippings in 1996. The other reference material includes reports and general information on a broad range of subjects related to the preservation of farmland. The final portion of this series contains samples of direct mail solicitations and surveys produced by the American Farmland Trust from 1980 to 1999.

SERIES 5 AUDIO-VISUAL MATERIAL AV BOX 1-7 1988-1998 :

This series includes several formats of material, including video recordings, 16 mm film, and audio recordings. Most of the material was produced by the American Farmland Trust to further their cause of protecting agricultural land. Material includes public service announcements, and copies of television appearances or news conferences in which American Farmland Trust staff participated. The VHS and Beta format material is organized alphabetically within boxes 1-6. Box 7 contains 16mm film and a 1-inch C format tape.

SERIES 6 PHOTOGRAPHS PHOTO FOLIO 1 1910-1991 :

This small series of photographs include photos from Board of Directors meetings, an award presented by George H.W. Bush, and examples of erosion.

SUBJECT ACCESS :

: SUBJECT ACCESS - :

  • Grossi, Ralph E.
  • Thompson, Edward
  • Dyer, David R.
  • Warman, Tim.
  • American Farmland Trust -- Archives.
  • Land use, Rural -- United States.
  • Land trusts -- United States.
  • Sustainable agriculture -- United States.
  • Conservation easements -- United States.
  • Sustainable development -- United States.

CONTAINER LIST