1917-1935: The Birth of FFA
The Smith-Hughes Act passes, promoting vocational agricultural education in high schools.
The Future Farmers of Virginia is founded and would later serve as the model for the Future Farmers of America.
The American Royal Livestock Show invites vocational agriculture students to participate in National Livestock Judging Contests in Kansas City, Missouri.
During the National Livestock Judging Contests, 33 students from 18 states establish the Future Farmers of America to provide leadership training for farm boys.
During this first annual convention, Leslie Applegate is elected president and dues are set at 10 cents annually. The National Convention was held in Kansas City from 1928-1998.
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At the 3rd National Convention, the issue of membership was clarified when the constitution was amended restricting membership to boys only under Article III, Section B. Girls were restricted to activities only at the state and local levels in the years following this decision.
The official creed and colors - national blue and corn gold - are adopted. The creed, written by E. M. Tiffany, has been amended three times but still retains its original basic tenants.
Fredericktown, Ohio, FFA members arrive at the National Convention in blue corduroy jackets with the FFA emblem on the back. J.H. (Gus) Lintner, director of the Fredericktown, Ohio FFA Band had the jackets designed as a uniform for his band members. Official delegates vote to adopt the jacket as the organization's official dress.
Click the icon to take a listen to an oral history with Gus Lintner on the invention of the FFA jacket.
The first FFA Day is celebrated. FFA Day was celebrated during the National Convention until 1948 when it became FFA Week and moved to the week of George Washington’s birthday.
The New Farmers of America (NFA) is organized for African-American agriculture students. It, like the FFA, was sponsored by the United States Office of Education and paralleled the FFA's programs and activities to the point that they offered many of the same programs under different names until the end of legal segregation.