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Farm Aid, 1985-1991, undated


Scope and Contents

In 1985, Nelson, alarmed by reports of failing family farms, decided, with the help of other performers, to stage concert benefits. The proceeds were to be channeled to provide assistance to needy agricultural families. Bill Wittliff served as an adviser to the project. His wife, Sally Wittliff, recommended the Massachusetts social activist, Carolyn Mugar, to administer the project. The first Farm Aid concert was held September 25, 1985 in Champaign, Illinois. By 1995, Nelson had done seven Farm Aid concerts the proceeds of which provided much appreciated help to thousands of farmers in the form of food pantries, seminars, scholarship programs and grants. The files of this series belonged to Bill Wittliff and contain material on the concerts and the administration of the funds by the Farm Aid organization based in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Included are clippings, correspondence, annual reports, newsletters from grassroots farm organizations, publications from various state departments of agriculture, concert memorabilia, grant proposals, and applications for funding.


  • 1985-1991, undated


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.


From the Collection: 4 Linear Feet

From the Collection: 8 boxes (Plus oversize material.)

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English