Tobacco cuttin' time
Here in smalltownland it is time for tobacco to be harvested. Although, around here people refer to it as, "cuttin tobacco". This picture was taken at the state fair. Tobacco leaves were being judged in various states.
Here are some leaves already dried and tied together.
At this time of year what you will most frequently see is tobacco hanging in barns to dry, before it is taken to market. This is called the curing stage. The tobacco is hung from poles that go all the way to the top of the barn. If you are an unlucky sort, you will get behind a wagon load of tobacco being transported from the field to the barn. So unlucky because, on the twisty smalltown roads you might get stuck behind said wagon for a long time before the opportunity arises to pass.
Tobacco barns differ from other barns. The sides have several small doors that open to let in air and this also helps to control the humidity level in the barn. This allows the leaves to cure. Later in October the leaves will be ready to be stripped from the stalk and sorted by the grade of the leaves. After which, it is taken to market.
Growing up, Secret Agent Man raised tobacco with his family. He, and his twin brother, used the profits from their own small tobacco crop to buy their first car. Although tobacco continues to carry a stigma, it is still an integral part of many small, southern towns.