There are a few books about the cornhusking contests. 

THE NATIONAL (1970 to 1999) and The Cornhusking Tradition (2000 to 2015) by Mitchel Burns are books about the modern cornhusking contests. 

Leonard J. Jacobs has written two books and several articles on the corn husking contest that took place from 1924 - 1941. The contest were 80 minutes in length during those years and crowds of 100,000 people or more would attend the National Contest. His two books are Battle Of The Bangboards, published in 1975 and Huskers Digest, published in 1998.

by Mitchel Burns

Mitchel Burns' book about cornhusking called THE NATIONAL, is 180 pages. It has a soft cover with a picture of Paul Luebbe husking in the 1988 Nebraska contest. The book includes information about the revival of the National Cornhusking Contest in 1970, National Contest results from 1970 to 1999, and profiles of the contestants.
Price is $15 plus $3.00 for postage if mailed. 

About The Author
Mitchel burns grew up working on the family farm north of Brookfield, Missouri. After graduating from high school, he attended Northeast Missouri State University (currently named Truman State University ) where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Education Degree in American History and later a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology. After 26 years in the Missouri public school system, he left education to return to his first love- farming. Mitchel presently works alongside his dad John and son Ryan raising cattle. In his spare time, Mitchel enjoys spending time with his son and daughters Lauren and Courtney, flying the airplane he built, and of course, cornhusking. 
Contact the author at  or  call 660-258-5503 after 7 PM. 

Sample of THE NATIONAL 1975 


Bill Gillen's book is available from the Illinois Cornhusking Association. It is the history of the Illinois Contests in Warren County from 1928 to 1985. The Illinois Cornhusking Association has added the records from 1986 to 2005. The cost is $20 plus shipping.

There are a few copies left of Bill Gillen's book. For a complete description of the book and availability contact :


by Leonard Jacobs

There are a few copies left of Huskers Digest. Contact the Illinois Corn Husking Association about the price and availability of a book.
The book is the history of the early cornhusking contests from 1924 - 1941. It contains the information that is in Battle Of The Bangboards, by Leonard Jacobs, and more.

My Illustrious (?) Husking Career

Leonard J Jacobs

My dad's forte was not in the mechanical field, so he stayed with hand-picking, and his beloved horses until about 1947. But that was long enough for us kids to get the "hang of" the highly technical side of hand-husking. As we got the hang of the sounds and the pictures associated with the job.
Who can forget the sound of the first ear of corn dropping onto the floor of the double-box wagon, early in the morning? Or the sound of the horses pulling the wagon going "crunch, crunch" on one of the "gleaners" somebody (I wonder who) had missed? ( I personally have witnesses that can swear it was most likely not me who had did it!")
And I can reveal, at this late date, my own brother told me that I had threw an ear over the wagon, and " was too lazy to go get it", and that's just the way he said it, too.
How about the little box on the side of the wagon where we kept a fruit jar of hot tea? And that same box is where Pa put all of the outstandingly well -filled-out ears of corn that would be used for seed the next year. And then in the following winter, we would shell all of those ears by hand. While Pa would shake a sieve back and forth, us kids would handle the technical aspect of the job whereby we would pour those shelled kernel into the sieve. The small kernels dropped through. Those little guys would be fed to the hogs, and the big ones went for seed the next spring.
Unfortunately ( I say unfortunately for me) Pa liked to plant white corn. That white corn broke hard, I think I was 16 years old before I quit using my knee to break the ear from the shank. I felt like telling my dad, " Hey, Pa, why don't we plant all yellow dent this year, instead of you know what" but just as sure as heck, every other year, we would have the privilege of picking one field of white.
Otherwise it was pretty honest work.