President Roosevelt's administration created the Dyess Colony in Mississippi as an experiment in American socialism. The New Deal relocation program in northeastern Arkansas brought many displaced farmers to the area as land and homes became available for no money down and affordable payments designed to help families who had lost their farms. Johnny Cash was three years old when his family moved here in 1935.
During the 1930’s Johnny Cash’s family settled in a small town in Arkansas. This small town is known in history as more than Cash’s Boyhood home as President Roosevelt's administration created this community as an experiment in the sustainability of social welfare. It was this experiment that brought Ray Cash brought to Byess in 1935 as he was able to acquire twenty acres and a five-room home with no money down.
Johnny Cash was three years old at that time and the youngest of four sons and three daughters. While living in this home Johnny experienced the Great Depression and the death of his brother Jack.
This home now belongs to Arkansas State University which offers tours of the home which include the larger history of this community and its connection to the federal government.