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for North Carolina Farmers' Alliance--History--19th century
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Eastern North Carolina planter Elias Carr entered state agricultural politics in the 1880s after over 20 years as master of Bracebridge Plantation in Edgecombe County. He was elected president of the North Carolina Farmer's Association in 1887 and the organization was absorbed into the North Carolina Farmers' Alliance the same year. Carr served as executive committee chairman (1887-1889) and later president (1889-1891) of the Alliance. Through his time as a leader of the Alliance, Carr worked with others to improve the stability and strength of the organization.
Lacking ready cash, many farmers in the 1880s made credit arrangements with store owners for supplies against the new season's crop. Interest rates were high, and farms could be lost when a crop failed. To combat this situation, farmers organized the North Carolina Farmers' Alliance in 1887 to provide loans and supplies. Unfortunately the Alliance did not have money for financing comparable to the merchants. After peaking at 100,000, membership began to dwindle in 1892, and the Alliance ended shortly thereafter.