Most of the farms in the Midwest were established during the last 75 to 125 years. The people who came into the region wanted to own the land they operated, and in the early days a very high proportion of the farmers had an equity in the land on which they were living. From the beginning it has been the general policy of the federal and state agencies to encourage a pattern of owner-operated family-type farms. Public opinion has favored this policy.
Mechanized farming has made it possible for a farm family to operate larger acreages, and as a result many farms have grown in size. Likewise, there has been a large increase in the capital invested in the land, buildings and other improvements. Acquiring ownership of a good farm in the Midwest in 1949 is far more complicated and expensive than it was a century ago.
Timmons, John F. and Barlowe, Raleigh
"Farm ownership in the Midwest,"
Research Bulletin (Iowa Agriculture and Home Economics Experiment Station): Vol. 28
, Article 1.
Available at: https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/researchbulletin/vol28/iss361/1