North Carolina Agricultural
Hall of Fame Inductees
Ralph Henderson Scott, Sr.
1903 - 1989
Ralph Henderson Scott, Sr. brought to public service a sturdy philosophy rooted in deep appreciation of the values and difficulties of life in rural North Carolina. He was a true son of the soil.
Born near Hawfields in 1903, he was the 11th of 14 children fathered by Robert W. (Farmer Bob) Scott, one of North Carolina's agricultural pioneers. Farmer Bob worked tirelessly to make this state "a land of fertile soils, enterprising live-at-home farmers, fine livestock and happy country homes."
As a boy, Ralph Scott labored in his father's fields, developing a deep sense of understanding and devotion to those whose lives revolved around farming. He was active in The Corn Club, a forerunner of the 4-H movement, and over the years he was involved in practically every farm organization devoted to the development of new and better varieties of crops, higher yields and improved farming practices.
Ralph Scott was a member of what someone dubbed "the smartest country boy family North Carolina has produced." His brother, W. Kerr Scott, was state commissioner of agriculture, governor and United States Senator. Kerr's son, Robert W. Scott, was lieutenant governor and governor and now heads the North Carolina Community College System. The Scott's interests were broad and included the social side of rural life. They were charter members of the Wake County Chittlin' Club when it was organized 40 years ago.
Together, the Scotts of Alamance helped me write the history of Agriculture in North Carolina. Ralph Scott made a major contribution to the writing of that history.
But he did more - much, much more.
He served 13 terms in the North Carolina Senate in a career that spanned the years from 1951 to 1979 and covered the administrations of eight governors, including his brother and nephew.
He was a member of a powerful Advisory Budget Commission for 14 years, including six years as its chairman, being credited with a major role in developing the modern day fiscal policies for the government of North Carolina.
Senator Scott introduced legislation that established the North Carolina Milk Commission. It proved to be immeasurably helpful to Tarheel dairy farmers by providing stability to the milk market.
He was a leader in all successful agricultural legislation, including research.
Ralph Scott, to a degree unsurpassed by any citizen of this state, was an unyielding friend and advocate of the mentally afflicted and physically handicapped, devoting a lifetime of leadership and service to their cause.
His hard work, experience, wit and common sense, combined to make him one of the most effective members in the annals of the North Carolina Senate, setting a standard of excellence to which public service may be gauged.
He was supported throughout by his late wife, Hazeleene Tate Scott, a lady of special grace, and their three children, Mrs. C.W. Mayo, Ralph Henderson Scott, Jr. and William C. Scott.
All of Ralph Scott's energies were devoted to creating a more bountiful state… a more fruitful state, and in this he was eminently successful. Agriculture, as we know it today in North Carolina would not be as strong or as sound had it not been for Senator Ralph Scott. He will be remembered as one of the truly great leaders and promoters of Tar Heel agriculture.
Kerr Scott's epitaph applies equally as well to Ralph Scott: "He plowed to the end of the row, his furrow was deep. Time will not erase his inedible imprint."
the North Carolina
AGRICULTURAL HALL OF FAME