Waste Yes, Want Not

Natalie Shapero explains the original purpose of butter sculptures:

[Pamela Simpson, author of Corn Palaces and Butter Queens] does a nice job of tracing these installations back to a period in the 1870s when Kansas, then recently plagued by drought, was desperate to prove the vitality of its crops to the rest of the country by embracing what now seems crass and misguided. Enormous and enormously wasteful displays–the U.S. Capitol rendered in apples, a multigrain Liberty Bell with a gourd for a clapper–seemed the best way to say to the country, “Buy some land in Kansas, and you’ll have more crops than you know what to do with.”

(Photo of a butter sculpture by Flickr user pwbaker)