« PreviousContinue »
One large range and fixtures, one large bake oven, dining room fixtures, tables, chairs, sufficient crockery ware for three hundred students, also wagon and team for hauling.
Supplies are purchased to the best advantage, at the end of each month. Board is charged to students at actual cost. Price of board for the last two sessions has averaged $8 50. While the fare is plain, every effort is made to have good, substantial food. We give the students frush beef, mutton, pork and bacon, vegetables in season, coffee, tea and milk.
It shouid be remembered, that in the amount paid for board is included hire of servants for sweeping halls of dormitory, the cost of servants and extras for hospital, also the oil used by students. The department is in good working order and well equipped. Respectfully submitted,
P. G. LUCAS, Steward.
REPORT OF STATE CHEMIST.
To Gen. S. D. Lee, President of Mississippi A. & M. College:
By ti.e Act of the Legislature, your Professor of Chemistry is State Chemist, and is required to analyze all of the fertilizers sold in the State. This work has been carried on as required by law, and I have endeavored to attend to it promptly and with the greatest possible çare. So far as I know, the analyses have been satisfactory to the interested parties--at least as much so as can ever be expected so far as the manufacturers and dealers are concerned. There are certain parties who are never satisfied with their certificates of analysis; most of whom, I believe, are in the business to give as little fertilizer to the farmers for the money paid for it as they can.
This is now the fourth year that I have analyzed the fertilizers in this State, and I have found the mass of the manufacturers dealing in the State to be thoroughly upright gentlemen, disposed to be liberal towards our farmers, and recognizing that it is necessary to the protection of honest dealers, as well as of the farmers, that the fertilizers sold in the State should be genuine.
I have been forced, in the discharge of my duties, to come into unpleasant relations with some of the manufacturers, and especially was this the case with the firm of J. F. Brannon & Co., of Atlanta, Ga., whom I was forced to handle through the papers of the State in the following notice:
“ BRANNON'S SOLUBLE GUANO. "A SHARP PLAN TO BEAT THE FARMERS OUT OF SOME MONEY, " MR. EDITOR: Will you have the kindness to let the farmers
of the State know through the columns of your paper the following facts, of special interest to those who have invested in fertilizers or expect to do so?
* The brand known as • Brannon's Soluble Guano,' manufactured by the firm of J. F. Brannon & Co., of Atlanta, Ga., has been sold in some portions of the State upon false and dishonest representations. This firm has used two forms of advertiseinents, both gotten up in a manner to lead the intending purchaser to think them the work of the official chemist. The one that is official gives the valuation as $32.74. The one that they have used almost entirely gives it as $36.39 per ton. In the fraudulent certificate they give the analysis of a sample sent here by them last year for official analysis, but directly under my name, without comment, they give a valuation of their own, raising the commercial valuation above that assigned by the official analysis, at the same time making a chance to escape a possible prosecution for forgery, and leading any one reading the certificate to suppose that it is all my work.
“ The attention of the farmers of the State is particularly directed to this firm, and if any of them have been victimized by their tricks, it will afford me pleasure to do all in my power to assist them to protect themselves as the law provides.
" It is unfair to honest dealers and manufacturers to let such attempts at fraud go unnoticed, and I hope that this attempt will meet with proper reward.
John A. Myers,
State Chemist of Mississippi. "AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE, Sept. 23, 1885."
Several other cases have been dealt with in a more quiet way, and one case is now pending in the U. S. Court at Jackson.
As was to be expected in such instances, some bitterness has been manifested upon the part of certain firms which have not been able to carry everything their own way, but the State will be better off if they should be driven out of it entirely.
The farmers of the State are taking much greater interest in the security of their investments in fertilizers than heretofore, and I have met with warm encouragement from them. I have endeavored to attend to all of the work, both for the manufacturers and for the farmers, with as much dispatch as possible, and we now have our laboratory arranged with special reference to the rapid analysis of fertilizers, so that in future we shall be able to push the work through very rapidly.
The fertilizers annually sold in the State amount to about 10,000 tons, from the best information at hand. This, at the average price, amounts to about $335,000, the larger part of which goes out of the State. There are only five fertilizer facto. ries in the State. The fertilizers come from as far east as Boston, and from points in distant parts of the country, making it a surprise that more is not manufactured in our own State, thus preventing the outward drain of such a large amount of capital. It
would certainly pay our own citizens to engage much more extensively in the business, and it is to be hoped they will do so, as our cotton seed meal is one of the best materials in the market for mixing ammoniated superphosphates. Every cotton seed oil mili at least in the State would find this one of the best means of selling their meal and ashes, and I hope that they will give it the attention which it deserves. It would open a fine field for home industry, and will undoubtedly prove profitable. With a rigid system of fertilizer inspection farmers will soon learn to have confidence in fertilizers, and their sale in this State can be increased to very large amounts, which will conduce to greater prosperity to all classes.
There has been, and I fear there is still some fraud being perpe. trated, which under our law it is difficult or impossible to check. The farmers complain that they do not get to see the certificate of analysis, which, by the law, should be publicly exposed by the agents, but from my correspondence, I apprehend they quietly suppress it in many cases, and by one false representation or another, avoid punishment. Again, some manufacturers print or advertise upon their packages of fertilizers that they guarantee their goods to contain available phosphoric acid, from say 7 per cent to 14 per cent., nitrogen, or ammonia, from say 112 per cent to 472 per cent., and potash, from say i per cent. to 4 per cent. In other words, they guarantee their fertilizer to be worth, at current prices, anywhere from about $20 oo to about $48 oo per ton. This variation has no excuse, and should be suppressed, as it is intended to confuse and swindle the farmer in most cases. think that the manufacturer should be allowed to print but one set of figures upon his packages, and those should be his absolute guarantee. There will necessarily be a slight variation in the chemical composition of fertilizers due to moisture, if to nothing else. But the manufacturer should keep the grade of his goods such that he can make an absolute guarantee below which they will not fall, and if they do he should be liable.
The fertilizer trade, and the farmers would be much more secure if all fertilizers sold in this State should be required to be above a certain grade, say 8 per cent. available phosphoric acid, 2 per cent. of nitrogen, and i per cent of potash, for ammoniated super-phosphate, and let the minimum be 10 per cent. available phosphoric acid in acid phosphates. This limit is easily reached and shouid be attained by every manufacturer, while it will also in a measure protect the fariner.
Actual fraud may be perpetrated in any of the following ways:
ist. Manufacturers may make the whole bulk of their goods, say a car load, below grade, in which case it is easily detected.
2d. They may mix packages of poor goods with others of high grade, which is hard to detect, and if detected renders it difficult to convict, as they can too frequently throw doubt upon the work of the chemist. The difficulty in this case is very great. The provisions made for the analysis of fertilizers by law usually being so very limited, that a chemist can seldom undertake to go through the series of analysis necessary to run down a case of this kind.
3d. The farmer may be deceived by the false representations of the agent who sells the fertilizer.
During the past year I have had occasion to meet with instances of all three of these in this State, and I believe that there is a disposition in some cases to attempt it still further, notwithstanding the experience of some of the parties in the courts. The whole system of fraud, however, in fertilizers, can be completely stopped if the people of the State are willing to take hold of it with proper energy. It need not be very expensive either, as I have found the majority of manufacturers who are honest, ready and willing to assist in its suppression, and it is to the interest of all to have a more stringent system of inspection.
THE METHOD OF ANALYSIS.
We use in all of our analyses the methods adopted by the Association of Official Agricultural Chemists of the United States, which have been generally adopted by the official chemists of the country, and are the most reliable known. Our work is checked with that of other State chemists, by series of the analyses made by mutual agreement among the members of the above named Association, for the sake of self-protection of the official chemists, and for the better security of accurate work for the various States in which they have contiol of the fertilizer analyses.
THE VALUATION OF THE FERTILIZBRS.
We adopt prices based upon the best information at our command, with regard to the actual cost of fertilizers in the State, and while they may not represent the actual price demanded at some points in the State, yet I would advise farmers to purchase fertili. zers that can be had for this price or less, as this gives to the manufacturers a very handsome profit.
The price adopted was 1272 cents per lb. for available phosphoric acid, 20 cents per lb. for nitrogen, and 7 cents per lb. for potash.
The value of the fertilizer per ton is arrived at by inultiplying the number of lbs. of each ingredient per hundred as indicated by the per centage composition by 20, and this product by the price per lb., and adding these products together; for example, take a fertilizer as Green's Royal C. Brand. Contains Available Phosphoric acid:10.36 per cent.x20=207,2X12"2...
$25 90 Contains Nitrogen ....1.98 per cent.x20=39.6x20.
$ 7 92 Contains Potash.
· 3.54 per cent. X20=70,8x7..
$ 4 95
Total value per ton of 2,000 lbs....... The following table gives the comparative chemical composition and relative commercial value of the forty-three brands sold in the State, during the season of 1884-'85:
REPORT OF STATE CHEMIST OF MISSISSIPPI.
8.33 $29 49 Alexander Conacher.
San Antonio, Tex. 3.34 33 38 N. W. Fertilizer Company.
Chicago, Illinois. 3.08 24 50 J. M. Green
Atlanta, Georgia. 4.76 32 74 J. F. Brannon & Co..
Atlanta, Georgia. 3.06 32 70 J. M. Green.
Atlanta, Georgia. 4.61 33 08 Rogers & Dameron.
New Orleans, La. 2.11 33 07 Columbus Oil Mills.
St. Louis, Missou'i,
New Orleans, Ja.
40 00 Sterne's Fertilizer and Chemical Co. New Orleans, La.
Baltimore, Md. 3.40 34 48 Walton, Wham & Co.
Baltimore, Ma. 1.72 33 26 Stono Phosphate Company.
Charleston, S. C. 19 26 Stono Phosphate Company.
Charleston, s. C. 26.62 None. Stono Phosphate Company.
Charleston, S. C. 1.26 33 85 Stono Phosphate Company.
Charleston, S. C. 4.82 28 86 Stono Phosphate Company
Charleston, s. c.
Meridian, Miss. 4.28 30 67 Baldwin & Co..
Savannah, Ga. 3,48 31 48 J. Merryman & Co..
Baltimore, Md. 2,68 30 27/Farman's Farm Improvement Company ... Atlanta, Georgia.
NAME OF BRAND.
Nitrogen ........ aici ci-aics
2.45 2 95 5.61
Texas Bat Guano,
7.09 3.05 10.14