We’ve detected that you are using an outdated browser.

Please use a new browser like Chrome, Firefox, Safari or Microsoft Edge to improve your experience.

We’ve detected that you are using an outdated browser.


The Evolution of Federal Agricultural Land Use Policy in the United States

The United States government has a long history of involvement in the planning and management of rural land resources. During the American Civil War, the basic institutions concerned with agricultural land use were established. The conservation responsibilities of the agricultural establishment were greatly expanded during the New Deal. Broader resource concerns and new non-agricultural federal institutions were introduced during the 1970s. From 1981 to the present, there has been an attempt to withdraw federal involvement in traditional agricultural land use activities. Nevertheless, new conservation measures were adopted by the U.S. Congress in 1985 during the 50th anniversary year of the Soil Conservation Service. This paper provides a review of the evolution of activity in agricultural land use and soil conservation by the federal government of the United States.

Publication Name
Journal of Rural Studies
Frederick Steiner
Bristol, UK: Journal of Rural Studies
Page Numbers
Publication Date
January 01, 1988
Publication Type
Conservation Policies and Programs, Farmland Protection Overview

Visit American Farmland Trust

Get engaged and receive the information you need right in your inbox.