About

Uncle Fred is an Oakland Bay Area writer who believes that Urban America and its values are killing African Americans and therefore urges tblack Americans to leave city life and buy land in the rural South and Midwestern States.

23 comments on “About

  1. I just found out that you have linked back to my blog, and I want to let you know that I’m very flattered . I am going to add your Blog to my links as I have found your site to be interesting and informative.

    I had never considered before I read through your site, that there might be certain homesteading or rural issues that would be associated with any ethnic or racial group, urban or otherwise.

    For many people urban people – Black, White, Asian, Arab, Indian, Hispanic or whatever – moving out of the city is not a realistic option. Perhaps we could discuss this another time if you like.
    There is a small Urban Homesteading movement that I didn’t know if you were aware of.
    The one source that comes to mind and may be of interest to yourself and your readers is

    Extreme Simplicity – Homesteading In The City

    Christopher & Dolores Lynn Nyerges

    Chelsea Green Publishing Company (2002)

    I highly recommend it.

    KMG
    a.k.a.
    Granny Miller

  2. David Shackelford says:

    Interested in buying a calf for my nephew, who is crazy about the minitures. Let me know if you have any calves available and the price. Thank you.

  3. You’ve been MIA for quite some time. I’d love to find out how close you’ve gotten to your goals.

  4. Fred says:

    Hi Melissa-

    I am now a journeyman trucker Melissa. If my credit were better, I could get my farm tomorrow. But now, my next step is to clean it up.

    You asked about my progress towards reaching my goals.

    1. I’ve moved out of California and I’m living in Oklahoma. Land and homes are cheap there … but I’m “not feeling” Oklahoma like I want to.

    2. I’ve met a brother trucker from South Carolina who used to be a president of one of the farming associations … and who thinks a lot like I do. The only problem is that to reach the goal, his mind is focused on trucking … at a time when fuel cost contiue to soar.

    3. Mississippi is another state with a “low buy in” that intrigues me. But .. um … it’s … Mississippi.

    4. I’d thought about South Western Tennessee … but they have problems with crime, racism, black-on-black violence, and Tornadoes. So … I’ve kind of scratched them off the list.

    I’ve seen a lot of the country, but I haven’t had time to really stop and explore like I’d hoped to. I’ve come closer to God … and I’m currently at a place where I’ve made up my mind go get off the road by the end of the summer.

    5. Texas … of all places .. has surprised me. There are a lot of small black-owned farms and ranches in Texas … and they look … GOOD. But after coming from the Number One most populated state (California), I’m not sure if I want to move to the 2d most populated state.

    I also see a clearer picture of how the Green Movement can be economically and culturally helpful to rural people and to African Americans.

    Perhaps one of my biggest disappointments is the fact that such a large percentage of blacks refuse to see how urban American life is stealing their joy.

    It’s amazing how deeply Corporate Capitalism has hooked them with that same old dried out, “carrot at the end of the stick.” Even while being beaten into quiet poverty by economic racism, they still seem to dream the same “idle” (or “Idol”) dreams they see in the movies and on T.V.

    When Marshall McLuhan coined the term, “The medium is the message”, he may have had it only half right. How the message is packaged IS powerful, but after viewing film, Marx was also right when he said that film is the most powerful tool of propaganda the world has ever seen.

    The journey to my hobby farm is spiritual. I am on a pilgrimage. I like to think that it’s a pilgrimage back to baseline … but perhaps it’s to the heart with the purpose of Glorifying God… and all His “chillun”

  5. What a thoughtful post above. I like your ideas and wish you well with getting to your goal of owning a farm. Where I live is very remote and there are days when I wish it weren’t quite so remote…then I listen to the news and am thankful it is. The world seems a crazy place when you live 458 kilometers from the nearest stoplight.

    Good luck with it.

  6. amaraeats says:

    Hi,

    I found your blog through a google search and am excited to come across another African American who is interested in the connections between contemporary black Americans and agriculture! Do you know of others in the blogoworld who write about these issues? You don’t seem to post that much, but I’d love to hear what you are up to these days.

    Best,

    Amara
    amaraeats.wordpress.com

  7. Sarah says:

    Hi Uncle Fred,

    I’m a documentary producer, interested in finding out more about the concept of African Americans moving from urban areas to rural ones.
    Can you please contact me at: sarahjohnson313@aol.com

    thanks!

  8. Valerie says:

    Hi Uncle Fred!

    I’m a PhD candidate at the University of Kentucky and I’m doing my dissertation on long haul truck drivers. I want to make sure that my interviews of drivers are as diverse as the industry is currently.

    I saw that you’ve gotten your CDL and that you’re currently driving. I would be so grateful if you could take some time do do an interview with me about your experiences as a truck driver. If you could send me an email at your convenience I would really appreciate it.

    Thanks!
    -Valerie Keathley
    Lexington KY

  9. W.Gardner says:

    Very interesting. I have just started my journey into urban farming late last year. The experience of growing my own food for just a short period of time was pure freedom. Soon after my first crop I connected with like minded brothas and sisters here in detroit michigan that inspire me everyday. You inspire me. Thank you.

    • journeyman says:

      Hey W.

      We can work the sharing in several ways … I need to do more to keep my blog current. (Forgive me … this “economic downturn” may be a blessing in the long run, but in the present, it’s keeping me “running and jumping.” ((chuckle))

      You can simply put an active link on your site … add a widget that lists recommended websites … and/or write a brief comment and post a link to mine. Send me a link to yours so I can return the favor!

  10. Monica Davis says:

    To the owner of this website:
    I am food/ag editor for beforeitsnews.com, a cutting edge blog aggregator. Please contact me regarding setting up a blog feed to our website and increasing your readership base. Monica Davis

  11. Jotale says:

    This is a very interesting place that I’ve happened upon very informative as well.

  12. Hello. My name is Tincie and I am so happy to have found this blog. I am also happy to know that I am not the only Black American that is interested in getting back to the land by becoming a farmer. I love the simplicity, the spirituality and the serenity of farm living. The problem is, I need a mentor. Someone to show me the steps to take to purchasing a hobby farm. Please contact me and tell me the steps I need to take to acomplish my dream before the Lord calls me home. Thank you, God bless you and Merry Christmas.

  13. Carlton says:

    I am looking for farmland/homestead in Upstate New York, Northen Maine and North Dakota and wondered if you had any thoughts on these locals. – CH

  14. Paul says:

    Hi. I haven’t had a chance yet to read more than a couple of posts on this blog, and, from what I can tell, you haven’t posted anything on here in quite some time, which is a bummer. I guess that I can only hope this gets to you because I would love to have the opportunity to talk to you. But, maybe someone else will happen upon this post if you don’t and an important connection might be made. Who knows? Do you know that you are one of the first search results for “black intentional community,” on Google? If you did know that, I hope you have a really good reason for not maintaining this blog because it could very easily become an important resource to an ever growing number of people. God, I hope its not because you’re dead. People like you are too rare. I wonder how you’re doing? Where did this all lead for you?
    My wife and I have been on a similar journey….well, our whole lives, really. We currently live on the Navajo Reservation where my wife works as a nurse and is studying to become a midwife. We have two kids. We’ve been here 3 years. We’ll be leaving in the spring and moving to wherever my wife is going to do graduate school for a couple of years and then we will be looking for land somewhere. But, as I am sure you know, options for affordable land in an area that isn’t just ass-backwards or inhospitable are just rare and getting rarer the world over. Its certainly not a time to be unorganized. I’m not some paranoid prepper type or anything, but I do know fall from winter. The astronomically growing human population pumping ever more pollution into the environment (causing devastating changes to the climate) thereby putting an ever increasing demand on arable land (which is quickly being bought up the world over by large corporations), coupled with an economic system that has an insatiable appetite for resources AND, add to that, our inability to overcome racism, classism, sexism, etc, etc, just seems like a perfect recipe for instability to me. I’d like some land for my grandchildren to ride that out on.
    My family is mixed. I’m White. My wife is Black. I know. A lot of people, Black and White hate that. I don’t blame the Black people for hating it. I really don’t. But, I won’t take any shit either. I love my wife and I love my kids and I’m in this thing for life. That’s just the way it is. At any rate, that’s how a White guy ends up googling, “Black intentional communities.”
    We’ve lived all over this country and have yet to find an affordable, rural area with good schools and a diverse, progressive community that we’d want to raise our kids in. That’s because, as far as we can tell, it doesn’t exist. We’re still looking, but, in the mean time, we’re also just looking for where we think we might be able to successfully build a more healthy environment for our children and our children’s children. We’ve got some farming experience, as well as, experience living in cooperative housing and we are looking for intelligent, hard-working, relatively stable people to partner up and buy a piece of land with. I have a CDL as well to fall back on. As it will be 2-3 more years before we’ll be in a position to buy land, we’re looking to connect with similar folks and, over the next few years, plan out the hows, wheres, whose and whys of a community/partnership together. We’d love to talk to you, Uncle Fred. But, anyone reading this who is interested, feel free to contact us.

    • journeyman says:

      Thank you Paul. I’ll be sending you an email shortly.
      I’ve made more post to my “Blacktraveler” blog. (But I’ve even fell behind on keeping that one up to date.)
      So much has been going on!
      Your well crafted message has inspired me to start posting again… and I agree with your sentiments … so strongly, that I’m thinking of moving to Africa. There is so much … GENERATIONAL trauma here in the U.S. that I’m almost giving up on being able to work/live in community with others regardless of their ethnicity … but maybe that’s just a dip in my despair since moving here to North Carolina last year….

      • Kevin says:

        I really hope you are serious about your move to Africa. I’ve done tons of research on Africa and re-patriating as some may call it. I would encourage you to look at Namibia just north of South Africa, Ghana, and most of East Africa. My best friend is from Rwanda and that place has become the most tech advanced country in Africa recently. Anyways you can buy land very cheap there, find plenty of available hands to work it and get a closeness to blackness all the same. I’ve come to realize that chasing dreams to save AA culture is a pipe dream. Black is black and I can find a closeness whether I’m in Africa, Panama, Costa Rica, Columbia, Madagascar (island off of Africa) etc. I too thought about getting a CDL but just to save up money to fund my one way trip to the motherland.

      • journeyman says:

        Hey Kevin-
        Things change.
        I made my trip to Ethiopia this winter and loved it. Was totally blown over by it.

        BUT… as I age, I’ve discovered that I am an urbanite. I yearn to walk to coffee shops and chat with people about ideas. I’ve been here in North Carolina on my little ten acres for two years. I’ve had enough of narrow minded idiots. (BLACK … and white.)

        It’s been good for me, but I give myself two more years. HOPEFULLY. I may put my place up for sale before then.

      • Paul says:

        “Living in community” is hard. Most of us can’t even live well with our own families. However, it can be done with clear, respectful communication and among people with a sense of personal responsibility and accountability. I’ve seen it happen. Good luck and please keep posting.

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