Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 23.djvu/615

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AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATIONS.

Although experiment stations are still somewhat of a novelty in this country, they are far from being so in others. There is scarcely a country in Europe where one or more is not in operation, while in the German Empire they number not less than fifty. The first to be established was that at Rothamsted, just alluded to, in 1843. This has continued to the present time, though not under the name of an experiment station. Nine years later, the station at Möckern, in Saxony, which had been carried on for some two years by private and corporate generosity, received a grant of money from the state, and became the first public station. In 1853 a station was founded at Chemnitz, in 1855 one at Gross-Kmehlin, and, for the succeeding twenty-two years, 1860 was the only year which did not witness the institution of at least one station. Other European nations followed the example of the German states, and stations were established by France in 1856, by Austria in 1857, by Holland in 1857, by Sweden in 1861, by Russia in 1864, by Italy in 1870, by Denmark in 1871, by Belgium in 1872, by Switzerland in 1872, by Austro-Hungary in 1873, by Scotland in 1875, by Spain in 1876. The value of the scientific work done by these stations during the last thirty years and the impetus it has given to rational agriculture are very great. The fact that, in a volume published on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Möckern station, one hundred and forty-six octavo pages are occupied with a list of the titles of papers published by them up to that time will give some idea of its amount.

The first experiment station in this country was founded at Middletown, Connecticut, in 1875, being supported in part by the State and in part by Wesleyan University. In 1877 it was reorganized and removed to New Haven, becoming entirely dependent on State support, and in 1882 it was provided with land and buildings by the State.

In 1877 North Carolina organized a station, located first at the State University at Chapel Hill, and subsequently at Raleigh. New Jersey followed the example of these two States in 1880, placing its station at the State Agricultural College at New Brunswick. The New York station was incorporated in 1881, and began operations in 1882 at Geneva. The Ohio station was organized in April, 1882, and is located at the State University at Columbus; and the Massachusetts station was organized in the autumn of the same year, at the Agricultural College at Amherst. The private experiment stations are represented by Houghton Farm, in New York, where experimental work was begun in 1879; and mention should also be made of the Cornell University experiment station at Ithaca, which has published a single report. At least two other States are debating the question of establishing stations, and there is every indication of a rapid multiplication of them in this country in the immediate future.

With regard to the value of experimental station work in America, it is yet too early to formulate an opinion. In general it may be said