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have been organized and endowed in most if not all the States in the Union.
FIRST AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE.
In some States an effort, and more than effort, had been made in this same line. Several hundred farmers and planters, residents of the State of Maryland, personally contributed a large fund and established the first agricultural college in the United States in 1857 at the station and post-office by that name eight (8) miles out of the city of Washington, but political appointments, frequent changes in and often inefficient management, together with the apparent absence of any adequate idea of the true aims and purposes of such an institution, has often . made it an object of suspicion and ridicule with the farmers themselves, and almost unknown outside the boundaries of its own State. However, “ It's a long lane that has no turning,” and within a year one of the best organizers in the country has been placed at the helm and with an efficient corps of helpers, if his efforts are seconded by the trustees, as they doubtless will be, the future promises results to the agriculture of Maryland well worth the long and tedious waiting.
The Michigan Agricultural College, founded about the same time, graduated its first class in 1861, and has ever had an enviable reputation as one of the best in the country. Both these colleges received the United States land grant endowment. The Massachusetts Agricultural College and Cornell University, Ithaca, N. Y., were two of the many that came into existence under the impulse of the Act of 1862. In Massachusetts one-third of the interest on the fund of $219,000, derived from the sale of the land scrip allotted to that State, is paid by law to the Institute of Technology at Boston, thereby relieving the Agricultural College, which receives the other two-thirds, from any obligation under the Act of ’62, to teach “ the mechanic arts.”
In many of the other colleges the department of Mechanic Arts is being more fully developed by providing industrial training under
skilled mechanics, who are qualified to teach the “ science'' as well as the “labor" in the departments which they supervise. Cornell University has long had such facilities for training the mind and eye, as well as the brain, and many of the western agricultural colleges are leading in this department of education. The University of Tennessee has just completed a brick building, provided with a twenty-five horse power boiler and engine of the most approved pattern-six forges with blowers so arranged as to take off all the smoke, iron-turning, drilling and planing machinery with all the improvements to date-in an adjoining room a dozen wood-turning lathes, saws, planer, etc. ; a third apartment is provided with benches, vises, and hand wood-working tools, each student having five or six feet of bench room, a vise and kit of tools. There are also in the building rooms where free-band and mechanical drawing are taught, and all the work done in the shops must first be designed and placed on paper, then constructed according to the plans.
That the idea of industrial training, barely outlined in the Land Grant Act of 1862 is receiving the support and encouragement of our best educators and public men, is evident to all. That part relating to the public schools of the inaugural address of the Hon. Henry R. Barker, Mayor of Providence, and the address of President Rowland Hazard, before the South County Agricultural Society at its annual fair last fall, is evidence of the interest in this subject in this State.
At this point it may be well to ask of the Act of 1862
HAS THE END JUSTIFIED THE MEANS ?
Do Agricultural Colleges educate young men toward, or away from the farm ? For we hear these questions now, although less frequently than ten years ago.
The land grant amounted to 17,430,000 acres, which realized, as reported, about $7,545,405. In some States the fund received large additions from private endowments, New York State being most fortunate in this respect in an increase from about $600,000 to more than $6,000,000.
Many of the States also have assisted the colleges liberally from time
to time. Is it fair, not twenty-seven years after the passage of the Act endowing these colleges, to ask if the end justified the means ? Surely the “ end” is not yet, and look the results attained when the purpose and intention—the spirit as well as the letter of the Act of ’62 has been faithfully carried out. Professor A. J. Cook, of the Michigan Agricultural College, in a recent article in the Country Gentleman, gives the manual labor feature of that institution large credit for sending " such a surprisingly large proportion of its graduates on to farms
and determining the future of the large number of our graduates that are now acting as professors in agricultural colleges and that are employed in the several experimental stations. Twenty-eight of our graduates are professors in Agricultural colleges or State Universities, twenty-three are members of experimental stations, and five are directors of such stations, while two are presidents of colleges.”
The Massachusetts Agricultural College in 1887, sixteen years from the time the first class graduated, had a total of 268 graduates, of which number 260 were living. Eighty-four of them (32} per cent.) were classed as engaged in “ agricultural pursuits;" chemists and teachers, 17 each ; engineers, 18; veterinary surgeons, 6; journalists, 8; clergymen, 4; physicians, 11; army, 1; lawyers, 9; dentists, 1; architects, 1; miscellaneous and unknown, 13 ; while 70 are assigned to business pursuits, several being in the fertilizer trade and intimately connected with agriculture. At the present time 28 of her graduates are connected with experiment stations in some official capacity.
Compare these results, if you please, with a like period of the early history of any of the classical colleges to which as a nation, we point with pride. Take Harvard, for instance; in 1643 there were four graduates ; 1645, seven ; 1646, four ; 1652, one; 1654, one ; 1655, two, and so on, whilst the class of 1685, consisting of fourteen, was the largest class graduated during the fifty years since “ the college was begun," and twenty-two was the largest number of any class prior to 1719. Of the various investigations and experiments made at different times at the Massachusetts Agricultural College, that upon “ the circulation of sap in plants and their expansive power during growth,” led the renowned Agassiz to say it alone was worth all the college had cost the Commonwealth.
EXPERIMENT STATION BILL INTRODUCED IN CONGRESS.
To increase the facilities for agricultural experiments and place the results before the people, a bill to establish agricultural experiment stations was introduced in the National House of Representatives by Hon. C. C. Carpenter, of Iowa, in the 47th Congress, 1881–1883. Nothing was done, however, and the Hon. A. J. Holmes, also of Iowa, introduced the same bill in the 48th Congress ; but, fully occupied with other matters, little was done till Dr. G. W. Atherton, following out the original idea, rewrote and practically made a new bill of it. At this time not even the sub-committee of the Committee on Agriculture knew of its existence. An official hearing was given, the Atherton bill was adopted as a substitute for the original and favorably reported, but all efforts in the 48th Congress were unsuccessful. Meantime Dr. Cooke, of New Jersey, and Dr. Atherton sent a circular letter to all the institutions in the country likely to be interested in the bill.
PASSAGE OF THE HATCH ACT.
Before the 49th Congress met a convention of agricultural college presidents was held in Washington. They approved the measure and appointed Dr. Atherton, of Pennsylvania, President Willetts, of Michigan, and General Lee, of Mississippi, all presidents of agricultural colleges, a legislative committee to look after the bill.
Soon after the opening of the 49th Congress a hearing was had before the Committee on Agriculture. The chairman, Hon. W. H. Hatch, reported the old bill with very slight changes, and the interest of its friends, ably seconded by the agricultural press, brought the bill to a successful issue. The bill provided that the first payment should be made on October 1st, 1887, but Congress failing to make the appropriation, payments were not made till some three months later. By the provisions of this Act each State accepting the conditions receives the sum of $15,000 annually, so long as the appropriation is made by Congress, for an experimental station.
At this stage let us glance at the legislation in this State supplemental to these Congressional Acts.
The General Assembly of 1863 passed resolutions authorizing the Governor on the part of the State to accept and receive the land-scrip, 120,000 acres, from the United States authorities 66
upon the terms and conditions of said Act contained and set forth ; and that the faith of the State be and is hereby pledged to the United States that upon receipt of the scrip provided to be issued under the said Act of Congress it will faithfully apply the proceeds thereof to the objects and in the manner prescribed by this Act.”
STATE AND BROWN UNIVERSITY.
The Governor was also authorized to transfer to Brown University all the land-scrip this State received, that institution agreeing to assume all responsibilities and faithfully discharge all obligations imposed upon and assumed by the State in the Land Grant Act.
Section 6 of the agreement on the part of the University with the State was " To educate scholars each at the rate of $100 per annum to the extent of the entire annual income from said proceeds, subject to the proviso as aforesaid. The Governor and Secretary of State to have the right on or before Commencement day of each year and in connection with the President of the University to nominate candidates for the vacancies occurring in said college or department."
STATE BENEFICIARIES, HOW NOMINATED.
A resolution was also passed constituting the “ Senators and Representatives in the General Assembly for the time being a Board of Commissioners whose duty it shall be during the January Session of each year to present to the Governor and Secretary of State the names of worthy young men from the several towns to be educated as State beneficiaries in Brown University, according to the Act of Congress, etc. And the said Commissioners are hereby instructed after one candidate has been presented from each town in the State (the order of the towns