This is the story of our most useful business. It is a medley of mechanics, millionaires, kings, inventors and farmers; and it is intended for the average man and woman, boy and girl. Although I have taken great pains to make this book accurate, I have written it in the fashion of romance, because it tells a story that every American ought to know. The fact is that the United States owes much more to the Reaper than it owes to the factory or the railroad or the Wall Street Stock Exchange. Without the magical grain machinery that gives us cheap bread, the whole new structure of our civilization, with all its dazzling luxuries and refinements, would be withered by the blight of famine. This may sound strange and sensational to those who have been bred in the cities, but it is true.