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Today it is the largest farming magazine in the country, with specialized additions produced to meet particular regional needs.
Readers can glean knowledge from scientific articles or just admire the gleam from attractive tractors pictured within. Like many addresses in historic Philadelphia, this structure has been built on the site of a fondly remembered building, in this case the Orange Street Friends' Meeting House.
We'll start our tour at 230 West Washington Square, where a cornucopia sculpted in stone overhangs a door.
Abounding with grapes, corn, and various comestibles, the horn of plenty provides a tasty welcome to the Farm Journal Building.
For a cemetery, the Square was remarkably filled with life, however.
Historian John Fanning Watson in his 1830 "Annals of Philadelphia" writes of two fish-filled creeks that flowed through the Square in the 1740s in addition to a pond that attracted wanton boys.
The Farm Journal began ingraining farmers with knowledge in 1827 from a site not far distant from its present locale.
I took a walk into the Potters Field, a burying ground..I never in my whole life was affected with so much melancholy." When the British occupied Philadelphia in 1777, they used the Walnut Street Jail, which then faced the Square, to hold prisoners of war. This story is told on the next stop along the "virtual" tour, at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Those that spent their last days fighting off the chill haze of Yellow Fever, wound up in shrouds underneath the now pacific park.
Walking on the Square 150 years after this beautification project, the historian John Francis Marion observed, "The trees in Washington Square are older, wider-spreading and taller than those in Independence Square, and the square itself has a more open spacious quality." The 6.4-acre Southeast Square was renamed Washington Square in 1825 to honor the great general and first President.
Start in the southwest corner and move clockwise...
"A creek once ran thru the Square and the aged Hayfield Conygnam, Esq., when he was young, caught a fish of six inches in length. S., had told me that she has often seen Guinea natives, in the days of her youth, going to the grave of their friends early in the morning, and there leaving them victuals and rum!
Another aged person told me of his often walking up the brook, barefooted, in the water, and catching crayfish." (Today the only water in the park is found in a fountain in the park's center and in a horse watering trough when rainfall backs up.) Rites similar to the Mexican "Day of the Dead" celebration were held in the park's early years by the black community. " In the years preceding the Revolutionary War, the Square was deemed a good pasture field — despite (or because of) nearly 60 years of burials!