John Blue, Sr. was born on November 28, 1861. As a child, he had a curious mind and was fascinated by how things worked. This and the blacksmith skills he learned as a youth, led young Blue to spend hours making farm tools in a small blacksmith shop on the family farm. He also helped his father farm the crops, including cotton, that were planted on their land.
In 1883, at the age of 22, John Blue paid his father $2,000 for 100 acres of land. Two weeks later he married Flora Jane McKinnon. Together they built a beautiful home and life here on X-way Road. The demands for cotton were high and the inventions built by Blue to aid in the growing and harvesting of cotton were very helpful for all of the farmers. Blue received a patent for a cotton stalk cutter in 1891.
In 1886, he and his father established a business on the John Blue land. The need for more efficient methods of distributing fertilizer and planting cottonseed resulted in the invention of the Rex Guamo fertilizer distributor and the John Blue cotton planter – both revolutionized farming. All of these devices were made to be drawn by a horse and all of them had to be painted blue.
The small business soon grew and Blue built a shop and foundry across the street from his home so the machines that he invented could be mass produced and sold to other cotton farmers. This plant operated for many years and still stands, but it is now the home of the Museum of Agriculture and History. Many of his inventions are on display in the museum. Mr. Blue died on March 21, 1935.