Chemicals and fertilizers used in an average year on a 78-acre farm, Lititz, PA, 1955.
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 Lititz farmer with chemicals and fertilizers

Credit: Image Donated by Corbis-Bettmann

In this 1955 photograph, a farmer surveys the mound of synthetic fertilizers and insecticides, including DDT, used over the course of an average year on his 78-acre farm in Lititz, Pennsylvania. At the time, DDT was viewed as a powerful medical and agricultural weapon that would destroy disease-bearing pests and raise farm output without any harmful side effects.

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