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It is gratifying to state that, notwithstanding the present depressed condition of the flux interests, “ Yankee ” ingenuity is still at work to perfect machinery to manipulate flax, determined to overcome every obstruction. At the Centennial exhibit of the Pennsylvania State Board of Agriculture, new machinery for that purpose was exhibited; and more recently, at the Franklin Institute of Philadelphia, at Cincinnati, St. Louis, and at New York, micbinery, designed to break, scutch, and hatchel, almost simultaneously, received generous awards from committees.
Compare the great crops of Ohio, and it will be found that flax is second to none in importance, producing not only as great, or greater, returns per acre, but furnishing demands for large amounts of labor in the preparatory and manufacturing processes, most of which can be conducted with unskilled labor, and at a time of year when such labor is unemployed; it is also a crop superior to oats, to piecede a wheat crop. Ohio's principal products in 1877 wereCorn, average value per acre
$12 60 Oa's,
8 96 Wheat
18 60 Total average value per acre was $13.85, while flax, in 1868, was reported, in some counties, to average as high as $27 per acre.
As Obio soils bave proven to be of great value, and have taken the lead in flax production, would it not be well for this Board to be the first to revive the interest in this crop by offering large bounties for displays of products.
I would suggest that a commission from this body be delegated to confer with the Commissioner of Agriculture, to attract his attention to the importance and depressed condition of this industry, to urge its encouragement by legislation and by all other proper means.
The following resolution was offered by the Hon. Peter Murphy, of Butler county:
WAEREAS, The rooms in this capitol building, at present occupied as the office of the Obio State Board of Agriooltare, have been, since the completion of the building, looked apon and recognized as the State Agricultural Department; and,
WHEREAS, These rooms, in addition to being occopied as the office of the Ohio State Board of Agriculture, are used by the various agricultural and stock-breeding organizations in the State as a meeting place for discussion and conduitation concerning the agricaltaral and stock-breeding interests of the State; sod,
WHEREAS, The Ohio State Board of Agriculture has, during its existence, accumulated a valuable agricultural library that could not be accommodated in anything less than the roonis now occapied, and which is accessible at all times to farmers, stock breeders, and others interested; therefore, Resolved, That any attempt, from any source whatever, to deprive the State Board of either of the rooms now occapied as the Agricultural Department, and which are so essential to the fostering of the agricultural interests of the State, is bereby remonstrated against by this Convention and by the several agricultural societies througbont the State which we represent.
The resolution was adopted unanimously. J. M. Millikin offered the following: Resolved, That a committee of threo be appointed to prepare a bill to be submitted to the Legislature for passage, makiog it unlawfal
First. To sell, to give away, or pomit the removal of any domestic animal which may have died from any contagious or infectious disease.
Second. To purchase, to receive as a gift, or otherwise obtain any domestic animal which shall have died from any disease, with a view of transporting tbe samo on any public or private road, or over the premises of another.
Third. For toH-gatherers to permit the passage through any toll-gate of animals which have died from disease.
Fourth. To sell off stock from herds which are known to be diseased.
Sixtb. To introduce into the State any domestic animal known to be in any manner diseased.
MR. MILLIKIN: I presume it is unnecessary to discuss this question. The object is to prevent the dissemination of cholera, and to prevent the introduction of other animals that may be diseased-animals of the cattle kind.
A MEMBER: I would inquire if, in connection with that, it would not be well to require the burial of diseased animals which die. My idea is that it is kept above ground by inattention to this matter, when it should be kept below. Miny farmers think they have lost enough when they lose a pig that dies, and they allow the dogs and birds to carry the disease abroad. I am satisfied it was brought to my farm by dogs.
J. M. MILLIKIN: I believe there is a law now on the statute books which requires the bodies of diseased animals to be buried, but this is to prevent the spread of the disease in living anim ls. A gentleman informs me that he knew of nearly fifty hogs that had died being cremated, and the stench was diffused throughout the whole neighborhood. He is
in favor of burying exclusively. But it is a great annoyance and very dangerous to allow men to deal in these articles, and some men purchase them and transport them upon the public highways.
The resolution was then adopted
MANAGEMENT OF AGRICUL'URAL FAIRS. 'The President suggested that if there was no miscellaneous business to ibe attended to at this time, it would be well, perhaps, to take up the subject of the management of agricultural fairs for discussion, as there were some questions in connection with the trial of the speed of horses at fairs upon wbich he believed some of the members desired to speak.
D. L. Pope: Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the Convention, I suppose the reason that Judge Jones pointed me out particularly, perhaps, was from the fact that in the past three years, as a member of the Board, I have happened to be, by the members, placed in charge of the horse department, and, therefore, he thought I must necessarily be the champion of the horse-ring. Now, gentlemen, I say I never was very much of a horseman, and I understand some gentlemen have not been very slow in coming to that conclusion themselves. But it was very well that I knew that myself. The members of the Board, however, saw fit to place me in charge of that department, and I have endeavored to perform the duties to the best of my ability, and any lack there may have been was through my ignorance, and I am ready to admit tbat such lack may have existed.
Now, Mr. President, a year ago at our Convention the question of the management of the fairs came up, and I turned a few moments ago to the report upon this subject last year, and I see the question was discussed at length by the various members from the diff-rent counties of the State, among whom there were a few whose names I have just jotted off. The discussion was opened by S. W. Knapp, of Cuyahoga county, and he was followed by E T. C. Aldrich, of Lake county; George Ritterer, of Marion; J. B. Dort, of Union ; L. B. Harris, of Wyandot; M. Warner, of Licking; T. F Joy, of Delaware; J. M. Daugherty, of Preble; James Giffin, of Butler; J. P. Marsh, of Williams; William R. Pool, of Logan ; W. B McClung, of Franklin ; Dr. F. M. Black, of Pickaway; Mr. Lawrence, of the Ohio Farmer; and there were many others who spoke upon this question, “Management of Fairs,” and upon the speeding of horses at these fair3. After a long discussion upon that matter, I see that I, as a member of the Board, having had the horse department in charge, and knowing the condition of the Board financially, and that the question would inevitably arise before the Board as to the matter of speeding horses at our fairs, made the request that that question might come before the Convention. I will read an extract here from that report, that you may see the anxiety I felt upon the matter, and that you may see what was the action of the Convention :
“D. L. Pope, of Geanga county: This question of fast horses at fairs is one which all county societies, no doubt, as well as the State Board, have bad considerable solicitude about. It is condemned by some and uphold by others. Now I rise simply for the purpose of asking the question whether peemiums shall be paid for this purpose—whether the plan has the approbation of the different persons here, representing the different county societies, and I would like to have the counties called, and members signify, as their county is called, their approbation or disapproval of the trottiog course at county faire and at the State Fair. This is a question about which we havo had some doubte, but still the Board have paid premiums for fast trotting and fast running. We had a running race upon the track at the State Fair last fall, and a year ago last fall, and the question will no doubt come up in the Board for discussion this coming year, wherever the fair may be held. As has been remarked, it is not agricultural, but in order to mako a success of faire we must have an attendance, and must raise the fonds to pay the premiums. Now, then, does the speed ring produce an attendance equival-nt to pay the premiums and an excess! There is not any question as to the propriety of excluding intoxicating drinks and the attendant rowdyism. I do coniend that a fair properly conducted need not embrare the selling of intoxicating drinks, or gambling, or shows, or pool-selling; but wbother or no trials of speed should be encouraged, and premium, paid for them-and premiums of the size the boards are sometimes compelled to pay in order to bring fast horses apon the track is another question, and I wish that some member might offer a resolution upon the subject-I dou't wish to do that, but I would like to get the sense of this Convention as to the propriety of the State Board paying premiums for trials of speed"
In accordance with that request, the resolution was offered, and the question descussed at considerable length by the Board and delegates.
Now, gentlemen, as I said to Judge Jones, in the main I coincide with him in regard to racing at our fairs. The speeding of horses some do not call racing, and some do. We might as well call it racing, for that is what it is. At our meeting after the election of the new Board last year, the question came up, and a large number of the members seemed disposed to defer the matter largely to me.
I was appointed again by the President to take charge of that matter, and they wanted to know what I thought of it. I felt a great deal of anxiety in taking the position, knowing there was a great deal of responsibility in taking it upon myself to decide this matter. Before doing so, I went to Col. Morrison here, and got the books of their horse clubs, and saw what their entries had been, and what their receipts had been. In making up my mind I found in a large number of their races, and where I thought they were properly formed, that a large per cent. of the premiums offered would be paid by entries, and I believed that by obtaining a large number of entries the premiums would be paid by the money received for those entries; that it would really cost the Society very little, or nothing, and I finally asked the Board, although we were about ten thousand dollars in debt, to appropriate the sum of three thousand or thirty-five hundred dollars for the purpose of offering premiums in this matter. They acquiesced in that, and said for me to make up the purses in such manner as I thought best, that I had had considerable experience in that direction, and accordingly the list was prepared A few days ago I happened to be in Columbus, and asked the Secretary to give me the figures, which I find I have now in pocket, and just for the information of members. I will make a statement of the premiums paid during the fair last fall. On some classes we went as high as four hundred or four hundred and fifty dollars, the total amount being three thousand and seventy dollars. The amount received from the men who entered their horses for the trial of speed was two thousand three hun. dred and sixty five dollars, leaving the Board out six hundred and five dollars.
Now, gentlemen, I have to say to you that at the fair-and no doubt many of you were there--the large amphitheatre and the broad grounds surrounding the track was crowded to excess, so that it was almost impossible to get through it. Now, Judge Jones will tell us, perhaps, that this was the trouble; that that called all the people down there when they should have been looking at the agricultural implements, farm products, stock, etc. But after persons have seen the stock to a considerable extent, they want to see the races of some kind. Some horses are not desirable to look at, except when they are in the speed ring. But you lay aside the speed ring, and the , eople will come to the fair and go through the halls, and perhaps see them all in one day and go home, and what is there for them to see the next day! Now, our experience is, I think, in county fairs, as at our Siate fairs, that to be a success we must make them a financial success—we must have money to pay our premi. ums, and in order to get money to pay our premiums we must have the attendance as well as the exhibition. And as I said before, the people will get through the halls and around the stalls and see the stock to-day, and the next day will say, “Well, there is nothing new to be seen, and I don't care about going to-day.” But if there is, in connection with this, an exhibition in the speed ring, they will go through some balls to day, and about two o'clock in the afternoon, when the sport commences in the speed ring, they will decide to go there, and not try to go through all the halls or see all the stock, and will go home in the evening, or to their hotels if from abroad, and come back again the next day and go through other halls or look at stock, and in that way there is something new and attractive each day, and visitors will attend two, or three, or four days; and we are thus enabled to get the money which is necessary to make the fair a succ-88. Tbere must be money to pay the premiums. The State Board appreciated that very much in the condition they found themselves a year ago. Judge Jones suggested that the trial of speed be by itself.
Allow me to relate a little incident. Let me say, by the way, that some gentlemen had said to me, that during our horse fairs and races some of the best families were in the habit of attending, and when they