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Mr. Ware, for the committee on assignment of delegates, reported the following:
Amesbury and Salisbury,
H. TAYLOR. W. A. KILBOURN. Q. L. REED. ISAAC ALGER. NATIIAN Epson. A. J. BUCKLIN. F. W. SARGENT. N. W. Shaw. J. S. GRINNELL. C. B. HAYDEN. S. B. BIRD. A. PRATT. G. L. CLEMENCE. J. G. AVERY. E. C. CLAPP. B. P. WARE. J. D. AVERY. W. H. BOWKER. G. CRUICKSHANKS. D. M. IIOWE. E. HERSEY. J. II. Rowley. WM. HOLBROOK. A. C. VARNUM. Chas. A. Mills. C. F. FOWLER. C. L. HARTSHORN. D. A. HORTON. J. C. NEWHALL. G. H. GARDNER. E. W. Woop. N. S. SUALER. L. S. RICHARDS. J.W.STOCKWELL. W. BANCROFT. H. A. Cook.
Report accepted and adopted.
P. M. Harwood read an essay on “ Essentials to Success in Farming,” which was accepted, and will be found printed in this volume.
At 12.30 o'clock the Board adjourned to 2 P.M.
The Board was called to order at 2 P.M., Mr. GRINNELL in the chair.
The secretary presented a report upon the injurious and beneficial birds of Massachusetts, under a resolution of the House of Representatives of 1890. After slight amendment the report was accepted, and adopted as the report of the Board of Agriculture to the House of Representatives. The report will be found printed in this volume.
Voted, That the agricultural societies be required to print a revised list of their meml;ers in their transactions for 1891, unless such list has been printed in their transactions within three years.
Voted, That the societies be required to print in their transactions the names of the officers for each year ensuing their election.
Voted, That amounts paid in premiums to parties not residents of this State shall not be considered in predicating the amount of State bounty the societies shall receive.
Voted, That the secretary be instructed to notify the societies that they will be required to make their returns in strict compliance with the provisions of law and the regulations of the Board.
Voted, That any unfinished business or any new business that may arise before the next annual meeting be left in the hands of the executive committee, with power to act for the Board, and that they be a committee on printing.
A vote of thanks was unanimously tendered the chairman, Mr. GRINNELL, for the happy manner in which he had discharged his duty as presiding officer.
The minutes of the last day were then read and approved.
WILLIAM R. SESSIONS,
REPORT TO THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE BOARD OF AGRICULTURE ACTING
AS OVERSEERS OF THE MASSACHUSETTS AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE.
[P. S., chap. 20, sect. 5, adopted by the Board Feb. 4, 1891.]
The committee appointed by this Board to examine the Agricultural College have the honor to submit their report as follows.
The Massachusetts Agricultural College, which has held an honorable position among the institutions of learning for more than twenty years, is still doing successful work, increasing in strength and efficiency, and taking rank among the first of its kind in this country.
Acting in behalf of this Board (which is hy law a Board of Overseers of the college), your committee bey leave to mention some facts which perhaps may be familiar to some of our associates as they have had opportunities to gain the desired information ; but to those who have not made the subject a study
ady, a few words in regard to the purposes of the college, and the manner in which it was brought into existence, may be acceptable, although such facts have been frequently mentioned before in our reports.
In 1862 an act of Congress was passed, under the lead of Hon. Justin S. Morrill, United States Senator from Vermont, called the land grant act, donating public lands to such of the States and Territories as should provide colleges for the benefit of agriculture and the mechanic arts, the grant to be divided among the respective States and Territories, according to the number of inhabitants. It was thought by leading men in Congress and others interested in education upon a broad basis, at the time this act was passed, that these colleges would furnish a means of educating the industrial classes, many of which otherwise could not afford a liberal education ; our other colleges being more upon the English plan of providing an education suitable for young men anticipating entering upon professional life. One of the provisions of this act of Congress was, that it must be accepted by the various States, and the Legislature of Massachusetts passed an act in conformity therewith April 18, 1863. The act of incorporation was approved April 29, 1863; which provided for a Board of Trustees. A subsequent act made the Board of Agriculture a Board of Overseers, whose duties were to be detined by the Governor.
THE COLLEGE LOCATED.
After all other necessary preliminaries had been disposed of, the question as to where the college should be located became somewhat interesting. Applications were made by various towns, but Amherst came down with a $75,000 argument, and took the prize. This money was to be used towards the erection of buildings and other expenses in aid of the enterprise.
FARM PURCHASED AND BUILDINGS ERECTED.
After it was voted to locate the college at Amherst, a farm was purchased containing nearly four hundred acres, from several separate and distinct estates; and buildings were erected, such as were suitable for a beginning, and the college opened for practical work Oct. 2, 1867, with a class of forty-six students; and the students, for several years in the early history of the college, were trained in practical as well as theoretical agriculture.
The college farm is situated about a mile north of the central village, and is well adapted to purposes for which it is used. The work of improvement has been constantly going on, such as underdraining, cleaning and improving unsightly and waste portions, removing old walls and fences, and placing long-neglected pastures under cultivation; until at the present time we have an estate worthy of being called the State agricultural farm, though there are still many improvements that might be mado, and doubtless will be in time.
PRESENT FARM MANAGEMENT.
The farm is under the general management of Prof. Wm. P. Brooks (the professor of agriculture), with Mr. F. S. Cooley superintendent. Mr. Cooley is a native of Sunderland and a graduate of the college in the class of 1888, and began his duties in the capacity of superintendent last April. Your committee wish to acknowledge his attentions in conducting them over the large tract of territory embraced in the farm, during their inspection of the crops and stock. On our visit to the college in June your committee found under cultivation about twenty acres of corn (fourteen acres of field corn and six ensilage), six acres of oats, six acres of rye, two acres of beets, with such other vegetable crops as are necessary or profitable, all in good condition. Sixteen acres of pasture land were broken
year. Ten of it are now devoted to corn, and six to oats; about one hundred acres in grass were looking well. crop, it was estimated, would reach nearly two hundred tons, and there was a fair prospect of from seventy-five to one hundred tons of ensilage. In August, 1889, a system of drainage was begun to improve a tract of land of about thirty acres, and about five and a half miles are already laid. On this important and improved method of farm work the students have the benefit of both theory and practice. We found at this visit in June six students employed on the farm proper, and some eight or ten at the plant house. In speaking of the great task of underdraining this thirty-acre lot, Professor Brooks says, “ Very much of the ditching for this work has been done by the students working under the provision of the labor fund, but for which our operations must have been far less extensive."
Most of the college buildings originally erected,
having had their day of usefulness, have given place to new and more commodious structures, which are finely situated, occupying a commanding site, from which point the scenic aspect of the town and its surroundings is very beautiful, being diversified by valleys, plains and swelling eminences.