Each day, Bob Sheasley leaves Lilyfield Farm and heads into the city. And each day, he brings along a basket of eggs for his coworkers at The Philadelphia Inquirer. Depending on the breed of hen, these eggs may be white, green, rose, blue, or as brown as chocolate. And they are all deliciously fresh, a taste of the rural way of life that people have enjoyed for millennia, one in which chickens have played a supporting role for nearly as long.
In Home to Roost, Sheasley tells of the intertwined relationship between humans and chickens. He delves into where chickens came from, what their DNA tells us about our kinship, how we’ve treated our feathered fellow travelers, and the roads we’re crossing together. This is a story of agriculture and human migration, of folk medicine and technology, of how we dreamed of the good life, threw it away, and want it back.
Modern farming has changed the lives of both bird and man over the past century. But backyard farmers like Sheasley offer hope for a return to the pleasures of locally grown food, as diverse as the chickens he’s raised on Lilyfield Farm. With wit and personal insight, Home to Roost examines of how our lives can be changed for the better, with something as simple as a backyard coop.