The Order of the Patrons of Husbandry is the official name of the National Grange, the oldest general farm organization in the United States. Oliver Hudson Kelley, a Minnesota farmer, is given credit for starting the group. He was deeply affected by the poverty and isolation of the farmers he saw while inspecting farm areas in the South for the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 1866. Kelley believed the farmers needed to unite and promote their interests collectively. In the 1870's, the Grange was prominent in the broader Granger movement, which campaigned against excessive charges by monopolistic railroads and warehouses and helped bring about laws regulating these charges in some states in the upper Mississippi Valley.