Jeremy D. Wells
Carter County Times
Charlotte’s Web, the story of Zuckerman’s famous pig, Wilbur, and his spider friend Charlotte, wasn’t published until 1952. The book, and subsequent cartoon, would make the phrase “Some pig,” a set of household words for generations to come.
But back in 1919, Carter County’s W.H. Scott was ahead of the curve with a whole herd of “Some Hogs.”
Scott – and his pigs – first made the paper in May of 1919, when the Carter County Herald reported on his purchase of “a good line bred Defender hog” from the McKee Brothers out of Versailles. The brothers told Scott that they had received orders for more than 500 of the pure bred hogs, and were leaving for Florida soon to pick up a carload.
But, they told him, they’d rather buy them closer to home if possible.
The Herald used this as an opportunity to encourage readers to switch from raising “scrub” hogsm urging them instead to invest their time and resources into raising pure bred varieties.
Farmers, they said, needed to “get loose from this foggy old way,” as “(a) good thoroughbred hog can be raised much cheaper than scrub and there is a market for them,” with small hogs of the Defender line bringing in up to $100 at market. That’s equivalent to the purchasing power of more than $1,500 in 2021 dollars, so a tidy sum of money.
If you weren’t paying attention in May, the Herald had Scott and his pigs back in the news in August of that year when he took six top prizes for his hogs at the Boyd County Fair. The article, headlined “Some Hogs,” noted that he took first place on Duroc herd, first place on boar under a year old, first place on sow under a year old, and first place on sow over two years old. He also took first and second place “on sweepstakes over all breeds.”
“Some Hogs,” indeed.
Fine enough to keep Charlotte and her children busier than Wilbur ever could.
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