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In all civilized and enlightened countries agriculture furnishes direct employment to the larger portion of the inhabitants. The proportion of the entire population engaged in agriculture, in the various countries, are as follows:
1. England........................... 73 per cent. 7. Baden .............................55 per cent.
...70 1 &
76 * 4 5. Prussia...............................58 1 " | 11. Ohio..................................06.0
.56.5 4 " 6. Bavaria.............................65.6" "
The absolute necessity for agricultural pursuits does not require any more argument to prove it than it does to prove the axiom in ge i cetry that a straight line is the shortest distance between any two given 1; ints. When the contrary is once proved, it will then be proper to int.cuce arguments to sustain the proposition, or rather statement. Since the pur suit of agriculture, in its varied branches, is one of absolute and almost unremitting labor, and since so large a proportion of the civilized and en. lightened world is engaged in it, it may be well to take a cursory glance at what is being done for its encouragement by the respective governments.
In Prussia there is a “Ministry of Agricultural Affairs ;" the statements and suggestions of this ministry govern not only the revenue, but the action of the Banks, the Rural Economical College, the Revisory College for Agriculture, and the general commissions in the provinces for the adjustment of the relations between the proprietors and their tenants.
The State Economical College is composed of officers of different ministerial departments and practical agriculturists. There are numerous other institutions in Prussia for the encouragement of agriculture; among these are six Agricultural Trust Institutions and the Royal Trust Institution for Silesia, at Breslau; the Trust and Sinking Fund Institute in Westphalia; the “Ceres Trust Company" in Berlin, with a capital of three million thalers; the National Trust Company, for the Rhine provinces Westphalia, at Cologne, with a capital of twelve million thalers; the Provincial Aid and Amelioration Fund Institute, and 408 Agricultural Societies. An account of these societies was given in the Ohio Agricultural Report for 1862, page xiii.
The Prussian Government spares no expense for the encouragement and further development of agriculture, whether by extraordinary aid in any manner, or by model and experimental farms, by the distribution of breeding animals, the establishment of government tileries, and drainage work, or otherwise.
In 1853 (the latest official report at command in this office) the Prussian
Ministry of Agriculture expended 90,000 thalers for improvements in agriculture; 16,300 thalers for instruction in agricultural colleges of the higher grades, and 20,000 in those of lower; 10,925 thalers to societies; 24,200 thalers for improvements in horse-breeding, and 34,717 thalers for underdraining and ditching; being an aggregate expenditure of nearly 200,000 thalers.
In Saxony the State Board of Agriculture acts in the capacity of an advisory body to the Ministry of the Interior. It has under its immediate control four agricultural trust fund associations and several agricultural insurance companies. It also bolds an annual Fair for the exhibition of . live stock, agricultural implements, and products.
In Wurtemburg a Special Central Board of Agriculture is attached to the Ministry of the Interior. It has charge of sixty-two province (county) Agricultural Societies; the Trust Fund Society; Marker Treasury, and complete control of the Farmers' Bank.
In the Grand Duchy of Baden is a Central Board of Agriculture attached to the Ministry of the Interior, under whose direct control are five districts and 48 provincial (county) societies. This Board is entirely inde. pendent in its transactions.
In Hesse Cassel is a Central Board of Agriculture also attached to the Department of the Interior, with an annual fund of 2,000 thalers.
In the Grand Duchy of Hesse Darmstadt the Central Board is a branch of the Interior Department. This Board, in three consecutive years, expended 267,665 guilders in the promotion and improvement of agricul. ture.
In Belgium the Department of the Interior is also the Department or Board of Agriculture. This board has 30 agricultural societies and 77 special agricultural committees under its direction. These special committees are chosen from among the most intelligent farmers by the authorities, but are independent in their organization and action. The agricultural societies are under the direction of the Central Agricultural Sotiety, at Brussels.
Belgium is considered the model country of rational and progressive agricuture in continental Europe. The culture of the soil and cattlebreeding have there attained such a degree of perfection, that in proportion to her area, even including the less fertile provinces of Luxembourg and Namur, no country in Europe can exhibit as large an amount of productions in both branches of agriculture.
France has a Ministry of Agriculture, Commerce and Public Works. The numerous agricultural schools, cattle shows, agricultural commissions which are located in every department, numerous trust and other societies
for the encouragement of agriculture, and chiefly the credit foncier for procuring loans upon mortgages, and issuing bonds,* together with many agriqultural societies, among which the Central Association for Agriculture, at Paris, give evidence of her energy and activity in Agricultural affairs.t
The Ministry of Agriculture has under its control the improvement and perfection of the methods employed in agriculture, the management and instruction of agricultural and veterinary schools, the distribution of in. demnifications for losses by accident and cattle diseases, the suggestion and execution of the laws relating to the sources of subsistence, and the man. dgement of the studs.
The first section of the Ministry is called the Department of the See. retary-General, and with it is united a special bureau called “Chamber of Accounts,” which is really a depot for agricultural accounts, statistics, and charts and plans of agricultural improvements.
The third section is the Department of Agriculture proper, and consists of the following three bureaus, viz: (1.) Agricultural and Veterinary Instruction ; (2.) Financial and other aid or assistance in the encouragement of Agriculture; (3.) Legislation relative to the sources of subsist ence. The fourth sub-division is that of the studs. It consists of a single bureau, viz: Encouragement of horse-breeding, or administration of the stud and stallion depots. A Supreme Council of Commerce, Agriculture and Industry; a General Council of Agriculture (conseil general d'agriculo ture); a commission for the registration of thoroughbred cattle ; a commission for studs; a commission for the registration of thoroughbred horses, &c., &c., are attached to the Ministry. The external service of the Ministry comprises, among other things, the superintendence of the Imperial agricultural schools, the farmers' schools, veterinary schools, and studs.
The numerous agricultural societies of France † (comices agricoles) are voluntary associations of farmers—five or six departments or counties have none. They receive material aid from the State Treasury. The government exerts its influence upon agriculture by means of material encour. agements, subventions, laws and ordinances for the more unrestricted development of agricultural resources. The Legislature has made provision for gradually laying dry morasses and swamps, and for the fortifiestion of the land dunes along the water courses. The consequence is an
• The total amount of loans realized since the organization of the Institution (1852) to the 31st of December, 1857, was 83,496,130 francs.
1856 the Government appropriated 100,000,000 francs for underdraining. 1 At present, 524.
increase of live stock, an abundance of manures, and hence, proportionally larger crops. . In Sardinia there exists a “Chamber of Agriculture,” but in the Papal
States there is a Ministry of Commerce, Arts, Industry, Agriculture, and
Public Works. • Spain has a Ministry for national prosperity, whose sphere comprises
public buildings, agriculture and forestry, mining, commerce, and general industry.
In Russia the “Ministry of the Imperial Domains" has the control and management of agricultural affairs, and provides means for its improve ment and further development. It aids agriculture in every possible man ner, especially by the exemplary methods of cultivation on the domains. In some provinces agricultural schools and model farms have been established.
In Sweden a Department of Agriculture is attached to the Minstry of the Interior.
In Turkey is a Ministry of Commerce, Agriculture and Public Works, similar to that of France.
In England, Scotland, and Ireland, there is no governmental department of agriculture, but the "Royal Agricultural Society" receives an annual stipend from the treasury for the encouragement of agriculture and the advancement of its interests. In Scotland is the “Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland,” which also receives government aid.
In all these European countries agriculture is making great progress : this is partly due to the interests which the several governments take in fostering and developing it; and more yet is due to the fact that in all these countries are agricultural schools and colleges, and experimental farms, which have engaged the attention of the most thorough scientiflo minds and practical men.
Agricultural societies have existed during the past quarter of a century in the United States, and much of the progress in this industrial branch is due to the healthful influence exercised by these societies. An agricultural college was organized and put in successful operation in Centre egunty, Pa., and one was about being organized at Ovid, in the State of New York. On the 2d of July, 1862, the following bill, passed by Copgress, was approved by the President, and almost all the loyal states havio accepted the grant contained therein : “An act donating lands to the several States and Territories which may provide Colleges for
the benefit of Agriculture and the Mechanic arts. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress Assembled, That there be granted to the several States for the purposes hereinafter mentioned, an amount of public land to be apportioned to each State a quantity equal to thirty thousand
acres for each senator and representative in Congress, to which the States are respectively entitled by the apportionment under the census of eighteen hundred and sixty : Provided that no mineral lands shall be selected or purchased under the provisions of this act.
"Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the land aforesaid after being surveyed, shall be apportioned to the several States in sections or subdivisions of sections not less than one quarter of a section, and whenever there are public lands in a State subject to sale at private entry at one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre, the quantity to which said State shall be entitled shall be selected from such land within the limits of such State, and the Secretary of the Interior is hereby directed to issue to each of the States in which there is not the quantity of publio lands su bject to sale at private entry at one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre, to which said State may be entitled, under the provisions of this act, land scrip to the amount in acres for the deficiency of its distributive share, said scrip to be sold by said States, and the proceeds thereof applied to the uses and purposes prescribed in this act, and for no other use or purpose whatsoever: Provided, that in no case shall any State to which land scrip may be thus issued, be allowed to locate the same within the limits of any other State or of any Territory of the United States; but their assignees may thus locate said land scrip upon any of the unappropriated lands of the United States subject to sale at private entry, at one dollar and twenty five cents per acre ; and provided further, th not more one million acres shall be located by such assignees in any one of the States ; and provided further, that no such location shall be made before one year from the passage of this act.
"SEC. 3. And be il further enacted, That all the expenses of management, superintendence, and taxes, from date of selection of said lands, previous to their sales, and all expenses incurred in the management and disbursement of the moneys which may be received therefrom, shall be paid by the States to which they may belong out of the treasury of said States, so that the entire proceeds of the sale of said lands shall be applied without any diminution whatever to the purpose hereinafter mentioned.
“Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That all moneys derived from the sale of the lands aforesaid by the State to which the lands are apportioned and from the sales of the land scrip hereinbefore provided for shall be invested in stocks of the United States, or of some other safe stocks, yielding not less than five per centum upon the par value of said stocks, and that the moneys Bo invested shall constitute a perpetual fund; the capital of which shall remain forever undiminished (except so far as may be provided in section fifth of this act), and the interest of which shall be inviolably appropriated by each State which may take and claim the benefit of this act to the endowment support and maintenance of at least one college, where the leading object shall he without excluding other scientific and classical studies, and including military tactics, to teach mch branches of learning as are related to agriculture and the mechanic arts, in such a manner as the legislatures of the States may respectively prescribe, in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes in the several pursuits and professions of life.
Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the grant of land and land scrip hereby authorized, shall be made on the following conditions, to which as well as to the provision hereinbefore contained the previous assent of the several states shall be signified by legislative act :
“1st. If any portion of the fund invested, as provided by the foregoing section, or any popson of the interest thereon, shall by any action or contingency, be diminished or lost, it shal be replaced by the State to which it belongs, so that the capital of the fund shall remain forever undiminished, and the annual interest shall be regularly applied without diminution to the purposes mentioned in the fourth section of this act, except that a sum not exceeding ten per oentum upon the amount received by any State under the provisions of this act may be expended for the purchase of lands for sites or experimental farms whenever authorized by the respective legislatures of said States.
" 20. No portion of said fund nor the interest thereon shall be applied directly or indirectly