Farm, Field and Fireside, February 6, 1896

While researching some issues regarding Fair Oaks History, I discovered that the University of Illinois has put on-line issues of the Farm, Field and Fireside newspaper which document the travels of the Fair Oaks excursionists from Chicago. Howard & Wilson Publishers, Chicago, were the sponsors and land sellers of the Fair Oaks Sunset Colony. They advertised the land, organized the excursion trains and sold the lots.

Howard & Wilson changed the name of this newspaper fairly often. Within a year it was "Western Rural and Livestock Weekly", "Farm, Field and Stockman", and "Farm, Field and Fireside" - all the same newspaper. The United States was mostly rural and dedicated to farming and ranching in the late 1800's, so it was a very popular newspaper. It was a weekly newspaper dealing with practical farm issues, and had such exciting sections as "Sales of North Carolina Lettuce" and "More About Hog Cholera". But, sandwiched in many of the issues was news from the colonies, including Fair Oaks. The issue I found most interesting was the letters back from the second excursion train to Fair Oaks, titled "Camping Among the Orange Groves", which contained extensive documentation of the trip.

Since the PDF files are so large for all of an issue, I've limited the PDF below to only the pages having to do with Fair Oaks. If you'd like to browse the whole issue or others, the site is or Google "Farm, Field and Fireside".

Selected pages from the Feb. 6, 1896 issue (6 meg PDF)

Jim Pearce, Webmaster, FOHS