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We are impressed by the fact that an America of free farmers did not happen automatically. It was and is the product of the struggle of the common people for equality of opportunity, for a right to a place in the sun, for freedom of enterprise and democracy. This struggle was marked by Abraham Lincoln's fight to pass the Homestead Act of 1863. It was further marked by the Reclamation Acts of 1902 and 1906, which also embodied the principle that our country's resources belong to the people.

During the decades since then, in the development of our vast resource of falling water, the antimonopoly idea was made a functional precept, as the preference clause was designed to give the people access to what was already theirs, the energy developed at Government dams, free from any toll exacted by monopoly.

The 160-acre limitation you now have under examination is thus a part of a well-founded and proven policy that have given our people access to their resources, that has held back monopoly and permitted free enterprise to surge forward in building the America we have.

This record of achievement calls for a strengthening, rather than weakening, the Lincoln principle that our future may hold at least as great an opportunity for the people as the past.

The attached resolution passed by delegates at the annual meeting of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association at Chicago, March 4-7, 1957, states the association's official position on this highly significant question.

I regret that it is impossible for me to appear at your hearing, but I trust this statement of our position will be helpful to your subcommittee in your consideration of the issue. The very best personal regards to you. Sincerely,

CLYDE T. ELLIS, General Manager.

RESOLUTION ADOPTED AT THE 15TH ANNUAL MEETING OF THE NATIONAL RURAL

ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE ASSOCIATION

Whereas the family farm has always been one of the basic foundations of freedom and democracy in this country; and

Whereas since 1906 Federal reclamation law has restricted the rights of any individual of water for 160 acres from Federal projects; and

Whereas the preference rights of nonprofit electric systems and the preference rights of family farmers implicit in the 160-acre limitation are both designed to limit the privileges of big corporations as regards public resources; and

Whereas the enemies of power preference and the 160-acre limitation are allied against the people: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That we urge the Congress to preserve the power preference clause and the 160-acre limitation; and be it further

Resolved, That the Congress take a realistic look at climate, land and water supplies in reclamation projects with a view to raising the 160-acre limit in those projects—and only in those—where a 160-acre farm will not provide the economic foundation for a decent living for a farm family. In our opinion, destruction of the 160-acre limitation as a broad principlesubject only to limited and special exceptions by congressional act-is contrary to the public interest and will jeopardize development of the water resources of the West because we do not believe that eastern taxpayers will long tolerate Federal subsidization of huge corporation farms through the reclamation program.

ROUTE, 1, MANHATTAN, MONT.,

April 26, 1958. Senator CLINTON ANDERSON,

Chairman, Subcommittee on Irrigation and Reclamation. DEAR SENATOR ANDERSON : Concerning the limitations of 160 acres on reclamation farms, in the South, East, and Far West coast, 160 acres may be considered enough, but in Montana, Dakotas, and Wyoming area, conditions are different: average farms are many more acres; with short seasons and only crops of grain and with plenty of water, hay, peas, and potatoes, 160 acres is not enough.

Check the projects that are a few years old ; many of the farmers still on these have bought out their neighbors and are making a go of it only because they have

more acres.

The farmers in this area are fighting to keep more of their land, and are very reluctant to sign up on reclamation projects.

In this area, the 160-acre limitation should certainly be raised, and I am not
for large corporation farms, either, only for livable family-sized farms.
Please make this part of your record.
Yours truly,

GRACE BATES
Mrs. Avery Bates.

1915 KEYES STREET, MADISON, W18.,

April 24, 1958. Hon. CLINTON ANDERSON, Chairman, Subcommittee on Irrigation and Reclamation,

United States Senate, Washington, D.C. DEAR SIR: May I urge your support of the bill coming before your committee which will support the 160-acre limitation on land owned by 1 individual and irrigated by public irrigation projects. I feel that this is a step to keep some of our needed integration of family and community life. Thank you. Yours sincerely,

LORA MEBMIN.

1181 EVANSDALE AVENUE, NEWARK, OHIO,

April 30, 1958. Senator CLINTON ANDERSON, Chairman, Subcommittee on Irrigation and Reclamation,

Washington, D. C. DEAR SENATOR ANDERSON : Today your committee is holding hearings on the excess-land law.

Please know that you will be supported by millions of citizens when you throw your full support in favor of continuing the present 160-acre irrigation limitation. Help us protect the small operators. Truly,

BLANCHE BEAL LOWE,

4070 BUCKINGHAM ROAD, LOS ANGELES, CALIF.,

April 23, 1958. Hon. CLINTON ANDERSON,

United States Senate, Washington, D.O. DEAR SENATOB ANDERBON : Your committee is considering legislation, I understand, to change the law regarding family farming of 160-acre tracts of federally owned land.

I wish to express my op that the present law is adequate as it and hope that your committee will not make any changes in it, despite outside pressures. Sincerely yours,

ARTHUR F. GREENWALD, M. D.

APPENDIX C

THE FOLLOWING IS A MEMORANDUM OF THE CHAIRMAN OF THE SUBCOMMITTEE ON IRRIGATION AND RECLAMATION TO THE MEMBERS OF THE SENATE COMMITTEE ON INTERIOR AND INSULAR AFFAIRS ON ACREAGE LIMI

TATION-RECLAMATION LAW

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