Photo: 1st Farm in Eastern U.S. Grown for Taste, Not Hunger?



A 3,800-year-old farm in present-day Illinois was home to the first known "crop complex" in eastern North America, where people planted at least five varieties of seed-bearing plants, including sunflowers (above, a 3,500-year-old sunflower seed found in Kentucky).

The April 2009 research suggests that farming may not always have been a necessity, as previously thought, but rather a reflection of the culture's "own free will," experts say.

Photograph courtesy John Steiner, National Museum of Natural History


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