Gene Logsdon, 1932 - 2016

Yes, I've read the headlines, and once again – although perhaps a bit more so than previous iterations – the previous year (2016) was one for fawning over many-a-departed pop stars. David Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen, George Michael, and many others. Pop stars aren't really my thing, but if that stuff floats your dinghy, well, all the best with that. In the meantime, 2016 was also the year that several luminaries with a more agrarian bent also bade their farewell, beginning with the co-founder of Permaculture, Bill Mollison. Just a couple of weeks ago one of Permaculture's most respected and more recent practitioners and teachers, Toby Hemenway, also made an all-too-early departure. But along with these, 2016 also saw us lose an agrarian outside the world of Permaculture, that somebody being the aptly named Contrary Farmer, Gene Logsdon.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

I love farmers. It would be even better if they could build iphones, extract oil and gas, build nuke plants, develop and make entertainment for the tellys, all the things that make the world worth living in beyond just farming.

Well, to each their own, but I don’t know how much longevity there’ll be to many of those things as the collapse of industrial civilization makes its way from the peripheries to the centres.

Thank you for this post. I mostly knew Logsdon from his articles in the Mother Earth News long ago. I have just ordered a couple of his books, so I will discover him anew.

BJackson should learn that sarcasm only works when everyone knows for sure that the statement being uttered is false.

If he wasn’t being sarcastic, I second your opinion. If BJackson doesn’t like farming, he can always hunt and gather. I already have a small farm, so I’ll stick with that.

Sweet, glad you found it useful! And I didn’t realize you were also one of the “looniest, stupidest idiots in society”. I hope to be joining the club sooner than later. :wink:

Thanks tor the tip. I’m going to a used book-store tomorrow. I’ll be looking for Logsdon. I read some of the intro to ‘The Mother of All Arts’ and I checked out the chapters. Of course I’ll get what I can find. It seems to me Logsdon was tuned into what being alive is all about.

“Of course I’ll get what I can find.” Yeah, that’s probably the best way to put it when it comes to Logsdon, seeing how he wrote great stuff all over the place. Just earlier today I was saying to myself “Oh yeah, I should have mentioned that one!” (Small-Scale Grain Raising, 2nd ed.). Otherwise, the list of his books found on his archived blog is worth taking a look at:

And you’re right again; anybody who made the kind of jokes he made, and worked the way he did, knew what life is about.

No luck I’m surprised they did not have anything by him. I did read the introduction to ‘The Mother of all Arts’ and Logsdon mentioned another author and the authors book, Population 485’. I got that. I also got ‘The Cruise of the Snark’ by Jack London and two books by Barbara Kingsolver. I won’t be forgetting about Logsdon.

I may have to use my library cards.

Barbara Kingsolver is another one that I’ve got many books of from thrift shops (I may actually have all of her books), but haven’t read a single one yet. Jack London belongs to that list as well. That Population 485 looks worth a read, but perhaps I should try and go through the reams of books that I’ve got already. :slight_smile:

If you’re new to Gene Logsdon and can’t find “You Can Go Home Again” we have copies for sale. $25 includes shipping. Go to “Local Harvest” website and look up JANDY’S. Contact me through there and we can get you a copy. All proceeds go back to Gene’s wife.

I’ve already got a copy myself, although it’s one of those still on the reading list. Since you’re forwarding the proceeds to Gene’s wife I don’t see why a link can’t be left: