A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Monday, November 14, 2011

History: Crop Dusting in Monmouth County (1936)

The 9 Jul 1936 edition of The Matawan Journal shows Clarence Sproul of Keyport and George Young of Red Bank starting a crop dusting business out of Red Bank Airport.

Clarence Sproul, of Keyport, and George Young, of Red Bank, are two enterprising flyers who are rapidly developing a business new to Monmouth County but extensively employed in the Middle West and South. Sproul and Young have fitted up their plane at the Red Bank airport with a "dusting" device which permits them to cover farmers' fields and orchards with chemical solutions for the purpose of halting the ravages on insects and plant diseases harmful to growing crops.

Since starting the enterprise the firm, which is known as the New Jersey Aerial Dusters, have dusted potato fields in East Windsor Township, 100 acres at the Jersey Homesteads project, Ely's Corner, and fourteen acres of peach trees in the Old Cherry Tree Farm orchards, Route 35, Middletown Township. The work at the Old Cherry Tree Farm was the first time the new firm had attempted to dust orchards and the few early morning spectators who witnessed the successful operation were loud in their praise of the accomplishment.

The 31 Jul 1947 edition of The Matawan Journal suggests that crop dusting began in earnest in the county only in 1945.

Monmouth County farmers are taking to the air to safeguard their crops. Dusting and spraying of crops by airplane, started two years ago in the county, now is being carried on extensively. Most of the dusting this season has been done by Clarence Sproul, Keyport, who used the Red Bank airport as his base.


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