When agricultural lands are no longer used for agriculture and allowed to recover its natural vegetation, soil organic carbon can accumulate in the soil. Measurements of soil organic carbon and aggregate stability changes under various forms of land use are needed for the development of sustainable systems. Therefore, comparison of soil samples taken from both agricultural and nearby area close to land-mined fields where no agricultural practices have been done since 1956 can be a good approach to evaluate the effects of tillage and agriculture on soil quality. The objective of this study was to compare tillage, cropping and no tillage effects on some soil-quality parameters. Four different locations along the Turkey-Syria border were selected to determine effects of tillage and cropping on soil quality. Each location was evaluated separately because of different soil type and treatments. Comparisons were made between non-tilled and non-cropped fallow since 1956 and adjacent restricted lands that were tilled about every 2 years but not planted (T) or adjacent lands tilled and planted with wheat and lentil (P). Three samples were taken from the depths of 0-20 and 20-40 cm each site. Soil organic carbon (SOC), pH ,electrical conductivity, water soluble Ca++, Mg++, CO3-2 and HCO3-, extractable potassium (K+) and sodium (Na+), soil texture, ammonium (NH4+ - N) and nitrate (NO3-N), extractable phosphorous and soil aggregate stability were determined. While the SOC contents of continuous tillage without cropping and continuous tillage and cropping were 2.2 and 11.6 g kg(-1), respectively, it was 30 g kg(-1) in non-tilled and non-planted site. Tillage of soil without the input of any plant material resulted in loss of carbon from the soil in all sites. Soil extractable NO3-N contents of non-tilled and non-cropped sites were greatest among all treatments. Agricultural practices increased phosphorus and potassium contents in the soil profile. P2O5 contents of planted soils were approximately 20 to 39 times greater than those of non-tilled and non-cropped soils at different sites. FTIR spectra showed that never tilled sites had greater phenol, carboxylic acid, amide, aromatic compounds, polysaccharide and carbohydrates than other treatments.