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Charlestown Resident Emma Schramm's Picker's Checks Tell Stories of America's Farms

January 14, 2014

CATONSVILLE, MD (January 14, 2014)  - Charlestown resident Emma Schramm grew up on her family's 237-acre Schramm Farm on Mountain Road in Ann Arundel County, MD. She later tended to the farm's roadside stand on weekends during the years when she taught at Jacobsville Elementary School.
Farm workers picked a wide array of fruits and vegetables in the fields each day. They were given picker's checks, small metal tokens that noted the number of boxes of strawberries, peas, etc., that they picked. The picker's checks - which were stamped with the initials "LSCHR" (the reference to Schramm's Farm)   - were then exchanged for monetary payment.
Schramm today has in her possession 750 picker's checks from her family's farm and from scores of other farms. She also has a clock she made out of picker's checks. Her self-made cotton vest that she often wears is designed with replicas of "LSCHR" picker's checks.
Schramm and her family are proud of their life on the farm and of the stories each picker's check represents. She lives at Charlestown with her cousin, Evelyn, and her brother, Louis. They moved in together in May 2012.
'We grew up on the farm and lived together on it," she said. "We decided we would also live together in our retirement. We wouldn't have it any other way."