How Victory Gardens Were Born

Charles Lathrop Pack of Medical Board. President, National War Garden Commission. Photo taken in 1917 by Harris and Ewing.
Charles Lathrop Pack, of Medical Board. President, National War Garden Commission. Photo taken in 1917 by Harris and Ewing. 

The idea of the American “Victory Garden” was pioneered by forestry expert and third-generation businessman, Charles Lathrop Pack, a multi-millionaire and one of the five wealthiest men in America.

As the United States entered the first World War in 1917, Pack organized the US National War Garden Commission and launched the war garden campaign. His pamphlet, “Victory Gardens Feed the Hungry: The Needs of Peace Demand the Increased Production of Food in America’s Victory Gardens” is one of the leading monographs in the campaign for the Victory Garden program.

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In addition to advocating for US war gardens, Pack talks about the unfortunate conditions in some European countries due to the ongoing war and the need for Americans to come to their aid by providing seeds for food products and trees. After the war, he documented the victory garden movement in The War Garden Victorious.

Part of the Berks History Center’s 2020 “Berks History for Victory Campaign.” Click here for more information. 

2 thoughts on “How Victory Gardens Were Born

  1. Thank you for this interesting story about our history,
    however, I was disappointed to see a political ad attached.

  2. Here it is 2020 and folks are stuck at home wondering what to do. Gardening! VEGETABLE gardening! That’s what we will do and so if you didn’t get you seed order in before March 1st, good luck because the seed companies are so overwhelmed that many, if not all, have had to shut down to catch their breath! Try the dollar stores for vegetable and flower seeds. (They do grow!)

    Cedric Elmer

    On Fri, Apr 17, 2020 at 8:53 AM Keeper of Berks County’s History Mysteries wrote:

    > alexisberkshistory posted: ” The idea of the American “Victory Garden” was > pioneered by forestry expert and third-generation businessman, Charles > Lathrop Pack, a multi-millionaire and one of the five wealthiest men in > America. As the United States entered the first World War in 1917″ >

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