This is for all our chicken farmers and friends having a love affair with the hen. You are in good company.
вЂњThe Hen (An Appreciation)вЂќ written by E. B. White* in 1944 during World War II:
вЂњChickens do not always enjoy an honorable position among city-bred people, although the egg, I notice, goes on and on. Right now the hen is in favor. The war has deified her and she is the darling of the home front, feted at conference tables, praised in every smoking car, her girlish ways and curious habits the topic of many an excited husbandryman to whom yesterday she was a stranger without honor or allure.
My own attachment to the hen dates from 1907, and I have been faithful to her in good times and bad. Ours has not been an easy relationship to maintain. At first, as a boy in a carefully zoned suburb, I had neighbors and police to reckon with; my chickens had to be as closely guarded as an underground newspaper. Later, as a man in the country, I had old friends in town to reckon with, most of them regarded the hen as a comic prop straight out of vaudevilleвЂ¦. Their scorn only increased my devotion to the hen. I remained loyal, as a man would to a bride whom his family received with open ridicule. Now it is my turn to wear the smile, as I listen to the enthusiastic cackling of urbanites, who have suddenly taken up the hen socially and who fill the air with their newfound ecstasy and knowledge and the relative charms of the New Hampshire Red and the Laced Wyandotte. You would think, from their nervous cries of wonder and praise, that the hen was hatched yesterday in the suburbs of New York, instead of in the remote past in the jungles of India.
To a man who keep hens, all poultry lore is exciting and endlessly fascinating. Every spring I settle down with my farm journal and read, with the same glazed expression on my face, the age-old story of how to prepare a brooder houseвЂ¦.вЂќ
*Read more of E.B White:
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. (Elwyn Brooks) White has everything you like about a book. It has friendship, love and caring and more.
For more on chickens see A Basic Chicken Guide by Roy E. Jones (c) 1944