Historical Photos

MURRAY, WILLIAM G. (1903-1991).

Agricultural economist, founder of Living History Farms, and Iowa gubernatorial candidate. William G. Murray received a B.A. from Coe College (1924), an M.A. from Harvard University (1925), and a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota (1932). He came to Iowa State University in 1927, with teaching and research interests in farm land valuation and finance. Murray served as head of the Department of Economics and Sociology at Iowa State from 1943 to 1955. In 1935-1936, he was chief economist with the Farm Credit Administration, and in 1948 he served as president of the American Agricultural Economics Association. Murray played a prominent role in the creation and early history of Living History Farms in Urbandale, Iowa. In 1967, he helped organize the Living History Farm Foundation. He served as research director of Living History Farms from 1967 to 1974, and as its president from 1974 to 1981. Murray was also involved in Iowa politics, and was Iowa's Republican gubernatorial candidate in 1958 and 1966. Much of the collection relates to Murray's work with Living History Farms.

 Early Photos


Chickens; part of the original livestock

Corn Cobs

Checking the corn crop (1940s).


Student and instructor reviewing crop records.

Original Farm House

Original farm house

Dairy Cows from the 50s

Dairy cows (1950s)

Harvesting Grain

Harvesting Grain (1950s)

Class from the 50's

Early class (1950s)

Farmstead Sign

Farmstead (1950s)


Chickens (1940s)


Farmall Model C

Farmall Model C

Farmall Model C with two bottom plow

In 1948 the first Farmall Model C tractor rolled out of the factory and into the farmer's field. A follow-on to the Model B, it was slightly larger in size but kept the same 113 CID engine and 4-speed transmission. Other upgrades included adjustable rear tire spacing (with sliding hubs), a frame design similar to the larger Farmall Models H and M, and International Harvester's new "Touch Control" system which allowed the operator to lower and raise implements by touching one small lever. The tractor was very versatile and was used primarily on smaller farms or for small jobs on large farms. (Source: Yesterday Tractor Co. http://ytmag.com/articles/artint217.htm)


Grain Leg & Drying Equipment

Grain Leg

Grain leg & storage bins (1967)

Grain Dryer

Corn dryer

Grain Leg

Grain leg (1976)

Livestock Photos

Cargill Units

Cargill Unit (1974)


Farrow-nursey (1976)


Pasture farrowing (1970s)


Pasture hogs (1970s)



Cattle (1977)

Photos 1980s

The first computer

First Computer

Farmstead (B&W)

Farmstead (1982)

Class of 1983

Class (1983)


Cattle (1980s)

Hog Huts

Hog Huts (1980s)


Unloading Hay (1983)

Pasture Hogs

Pasture Hogs (1980s)



Farmstead (1981)


Machine Shed #2

Machine Shed

Machine Shed #2

A second machine shed was constructed at the north end of the farmstead in 1989. This allowed for storage of larger pieces of equipment used in the farming operation.



Photos 1990s


Open front swine building

class lab

Students working on planter

class work

Working on sprayer

committee work

Class committee (1977)

Planting Crop

Working in the field

class in front of sign

1997 Fall class

fall class

1996 Fall class


Farmstead (1996)


Garage construction

Hog sorting

Sorting hogs (1995)


planting windbreak

Planting windbreak (1997)


Photos 2000s


Classroom Addition


Classroom Addition


Finisher (2003)


Photos 2015

skid loader

Skid Loader

Ag 450 Farm sign with students next to it

Past Student & Former Manager

John Deere 9560RT

John Deere 9560RT


John Deere 7280R

John Deere 60130D

John Deere 60130D (loader tractor)

John Deere 8320R

John Deere 8320R


Class photo in front of John Deere tractor

Class Photo