FFA history

  • 1917

    The Smith-Hughes National Vocational Education act, (both senator Hoke Smith and representative Dudley Hughes were from Georgia) establishes vocational agriculture courses.
  • 1925

    Virginia Tech agricultural education teacher educators Henry C. Groseclose, Harry W. Sanders, Walter S. Newman, and Edmund C. Magill organize the future farmers of virginia (FFV) for boys in agriculture classes. The FFV serves as the model for the Future Farmers of America.
  • 1926

    The first national congress of vocational agriculture students assembles for a national livestock judging contest at the American royale livestock and horse show in Kansas City, MO
  • 1927

    H.O. Sargent, a federal agent for agricultural education for African- Americans at the U.S. Office of Education, and G.w. Owens, a teacher-trainer at Virginia State College, write the first constitution and bylaws for the New Farmers of Virginia, an organization for the New Farmers of Virginia, an organization for African-American agriculture students. The organization holds its first state rally that same year.
  • 1928

    Future Farmers of American is established in Kansas City, M.O.
  • 1929

    National blue and corn god are adopted as official FFA colors.
  • 1930

    Official FFA creed, written by E.M. Tiffany, is adopted.
  • 1931

    The National FFA Radio Program on NBC is launched.
  • 1932

    A charter is granted to the Puerto Rico FFA association.
  • 1933

    Blue corduroy jacket is adopted as the official dress.
  • 1935

    NFA is founded as a National organization at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama.
  • 1937

    Buring the national FFA convention, action is taken to establish a national FFA camp and leadership training school in Washington D.C.
  • 1939

    28.5 acres of land is purchased near Alexandria VA for the first FFA-owned national headquarters; the land was once part of George Washington´s estate.
  • 1942

    FFA members join in the war effort. Three former FFA members-- Robert Gray from Texas, Travis Hoover from California, and Melvin Jordan from Oklahoma-- serve with the Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle and participate in the famous air raid on Tokyo.
  • 1944

    The Future Farmers of America Foundation is formed in Washington D.C. to raise money for FFA programs and activities.
  • 1946

    Attendance at the National FFA ¨Victory Convention" is 12,500. Those in attendance honor the 260,450 FFA members who served and the 7,188 who paid the supreme sacrifice, of losing their lives in the war.
  • 1947

    The first national FFA Band performs at the National FFA convention.
  • 1948

    The first FFA chorus and National FFA Talent program is held at the National FFA convention.
  • 1949

    The first International Exchange Program for FFA members begins with the young Farmers Club of Great Britain.
  • 1950

    The 81st U.S. Congress passes a bill that grants a federal charter to Future Farmers of America. President Harry S. Truman signs the bll on Aug. 30, and it becomes Public Law 81-740.
  • 1952

    The code of Ethics is adopted.
  • 1953

    The U.S. Post Office Department issues a special 3-cent postage stamp-- the cost of mailing a first-class letter then-- to celebrate the 25th anniversary of FFA. The first stamps are released in Kansas city, M.O during the national FFA convention.
  • 1955

    Photo of American star farmer Joe Moore is on the cover of time magazine.
  • 1957

    Former President Harry S. Truman speaks during the national FFA Convention.
  • 1958

    The National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis presents with a certificate of appreciation.
  • 1959

    First National FFA center is dedicated to Alexandria, Va on land that was once a part of George Washington's estate. An FFA camp had been located here earlier.
  • 1964

    FFA sells its 1-millionth FFA jacket
  • 1965

    NFA merges with FFA, increasing FFA membership by more than 50,000.
  • 1966

    First National Agriculture career Show (now called expo) is held at the National FFA Convention to highlight educational and career opportunities in agriculture.
  • 1967

    Elmer J. Johnson helps develop the FFA archives at the national FFA center.
  • 1968

    Presidential candidate Richard M. Nixon is elected U.S. president of the following month.
  • 1969

    FFA opens membership to females, making it possible for them to hold office and participate in competitive events at regional and national levels.
  • 1970

    New Yorkś Anita Decker and New Jersey´s Patricia Krowicki become the first two female delegates to the national convention.
  • 1971

    The National FFA Alumni Association is established.
  • 1973

    FFA Official Dress standards are created.
  • 1974

    President Gerald Ford speaks at the National FFA Convention. The speech is carried live on network television.
  • 1975

    Food for America program launches.
  • 1976

    Julie Smiley from Washington is elected national FFA vice president and is the first female to hold a national FFA office.
  • 1978

    President Jimmy Carter speaks at the 51st National FFA Convention again, this time as a U.S President.
  • 1979

    Christe Peterson from Wisconsin wins the first Extemporaneous Public Speaking Event.
  • 1980

    The National FFA Foundation raises $1 million in one year for the first time.
  • 1982

    Jan Eberly from California becomes the first female National FFA president.
  • 1983

    The Ag Ed Network, the organization´s computerized information service, launches.
  • 1984

    The first FFA TV public service announcements air.
  • 1986

    The first Agriscience Teacher of the Year Award is presented to Steven McKay from Boonville, Calif.
  • 1987

    The first national television satellite broadcast of the National FFA convention airs.
  • 1988

    The Future Farmers of America changes its name to the National FFA Organization to reflect the growing diversity in Agriculture.
  • 1989

    The National Future Farmer magazine changes its name to FFA New Horizons.
  • 1990

    The Partners in Active Learning Support (PALS) program launches.
  • 1991

    FFA chapters in the U.S Virgin Islands and Guam, along with five chapters in Micronesia, are chartered.
  • 1994

    Corey Flournoy from Illinois is the first African- American to be elected national FFA president; he is also the first urban student leader.
  • 1996

    H.O Sargent Award is reinstated, promoting diversity among chapters.