Study for New School Mural (Harrow)
Thomas Hart Benton American
Not on view
This sketch is one of dozens of drawings that Benton used to compose his mural America Today, also in the Museum’s collection (2012.478a–j). The artist carefully studied the mechanics of the disc harrow that appears in the lower left corner of the Deep South mural panel. A predecessor to the modern tractor, this plow was used to prepare the soil for planting seeds. In the mural, Benton shows the farmer holding a rein, indicating that the harrow was pulled by a horse or a mule—not by a modern tractor.