Before The Harvest

"Before the Harvest " I know you will enjoy this story of three generations of farmers During the outbreak of WW2. Janice Villeverde and her friend Miriam Nixon are sent to Wildacre Farm in the New York Estate. it is there that they are put to work along with many others to help the war effort. it is there that they meet up with young Thomas Hogg who introduces the girls to his friend George Barrett. After a brief courtship Janice finds herself in trouble and George Barrett sends her away when she tells him. Forced to bring up a child on her own Janice swears revenge on the man who wronged her. Before the Harvest gives you an insight of how a farm worked during the war years; a story of love hate and revenge.


7. 7

The big story in all the newspapers at that time was that of Emilia King a black woman who was turned away from joining the land army because of the colour of her skin. Even though her Brothers were in the Royal Navy and her father in the Merchant Navy at that time. Then along came Alfie Roberts who said he had no objections to having a black girl working on his farm.

This caused such uproar until the Land Army were forced to change their minds and admit her. It showed that prejudice still existed in some fractions of society even in 1941.


Thomas looked over at the two girls who were giggling as they stacked the dung onto the heap from the barn.

“Do you girls know how to milk cows then asked young Thomas?

“No are you going to show us then?

“Yes, come with me said Thomas as he led the herd into the shed to be milked.

“What are your names then?’

“I’m Janice and this is Miriam; what’s your name then?”

“I’m Thomas this is my father’s farm.

Ooh we had better watch out then said Miriam with a beaming smile. She had her neat blonde curls tied behind a head square she shaded her blue eyes from the sun’s glare as she spoke.

“Well what’s to do then Tommy said Miriam?’

“This is what you have to do said Thomas as he showed the two women how to milk the cows.’

I thought that you had to pull the tits on the cow to get the milk out.

“Once upon a time but it takes a long time said Thomas and when you have a herd this size to milk twice sometimes three times a day it can play havoc on your back.

So you can milk a cow that way then said Janice jokingly.

“Yes if the machine breaks down this is how we do it. He found a stool then placed it on the right hand side of a cow then took the bucket. He then took the cows udders and wiped them before he gently pulled then squeezed until the milk began to flow out.

“Okay it’s your turn.”

 Miriam sat on the stool first then took hold of the cows udders then began to pull and squeeze the milk began to flow out.

“eeeh said Miriam I did it look! Miriam tilted the bucket to show Janice.

“Give me a go then asked Janice as she moved along side of the cow, she sat down as Miriam got up and then squeezed the udders as she had seen her friend do. The cow then began to urinate all over the floor so Janice jumped back up screaming.

Both Miriam and Tommy burst out laughing.


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