10¢ Winter Wheat and Train
Issue Date: August 16, 1974
City: Hillsboro, KS
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Lithographed, engraved
The last in the Rural America Series, this stamp commemorates the 100th anniversary of the introduction of “Turkey Red” wheat to Kansas. Many consider the introduction of this hardy, drought-resistant grain to be one of the most significant events in Kansas history.
Kansas – The Nation’s Breadbasket
On August 16, 1874, Mennonite immigrants from Russia settled in Marion, Kansas. These settlers planted a wheat they called “Turkey Red” – a drought-resistant, heavy-yielding wheat developed in Turkey. This wheat, now known as Hard Winter Wheat, flourished in Kansas. These Mennonite families were responsible for what has been called “the most significant event in Kansas history.” Turkey Red made Kansas one of the world’s greatest granaries.
Although manufacturing and services now bring the state more income, agriculture is still very important to the economy. Kansas ranks third in the nation, behind Texas and Montana, in the total number of acres devoted to agriculture. It’s the nation’s top wheat grower, which has earned Kansas the nickname – the “nation’s breadbasket.” Other key crops include grain, sorghum, corn, hay, soybeans, and sunflowers. However, cattle and calves are the most lucrative agricultural products.