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The End of An Era:<BR>Maryland's Tobacco Auction in Pictures

Rice and Bowling

Mike Rice (left) and Calvin Bowling are Maryland tobacco farmers. Bowling, 63, has been doing it all his life, but he won't be back next year. "I made my mind up long ago" to take the buyout, he says. "It's been downhill the last three or four years. You can't pay the bills." Bowling says he will continue farming grain and raising cattle. Rice hasn't decided whether to take the buyout. "He's young and dumb," says Bowling of Rice's indecision. As for the prices this year, "None of it's bringing like I thought it would," says Bowling. With all the rain Maryland got during growing season, the tobacco is thin and light. Tobacco companies usually pay more for a thinner crop. 


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Copyright 2001 University of Maryland College of Journalism.

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