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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 56.djvu/234

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POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

and reaping, his field will produce larger crops than his slovenly or ignorant neighbor. The object lesson has its certain result. The peasants are gradually adopting the four-field culture system—viz., fallow, winter crops, pastures, and summer crops.

Besides these, Russia sustains 68 agricultural schools, containing 3,157 pupils, at a cost of $403,500, of which sum the Government pays $277,500, and the local zemstovs (societies) or the school founders pay $136,000.

In France the eminent scientist Lavoisier, at the close of the last century, advocated the founding of a national school for the teaching of agricultural science. His plan for government initiation was not realized, but in 1822 Matthieu de Dombasle founded, near Nancy, the first true agricultural school. In 1829 and 1830 the schools at Grignon and Grandjouan were founded by August Bella and Riefell respectively. Now France boasts of one of the most perfect systems of agricultural education of any country of the world. Under the joint direction of her Ministers of Agriculture and of Public Instruction, France plans to cover every phase of education from the simplest forms of object lessons taught by law in all her primary schools to the crowning National Institute of Agriculture at Paris. The facts of science, united with the soundest experience, are demonstrated to the farmer by lectures and experimentation; the future agriculturists of the country are educated in the certainties of scientific research at graded schools, ranging from elementary to university degrees, and every milkmaid is taught the necessity of promptness, cleanliness, and system in the care of milch cows and in the disposal of their milk.

The former able Director-General of French Agriculture, Monsieur Tisserand, says: "The aim and object of France has been not only to give to children and young people the means of acquiring knowledge, but also to establish means for interesting old cultivators. In this century of extreme competition we must admit that the agriculturist can only thrive if, in working the soil, he adopts scientific methods. Old routine is no longer sufficient in this branch, as it is proved to be insufficient in manufacture." In carrying out her enlightened policy, instruction was given in 1893[1] to 3,600 pupil teachers. Thirty agricultural laboratories throughout the country furnish analyses of soils and manures for the help of cultivators, and 3,362 trial fields are established where farmers can profit by experiments suitable to their own districts. The special farm schools number sixteen; practical schools of agriculture, thirty-nine; national schools of agriculture and horticulture,


  1. Statistics of 1893. The French Government only occasionally issues its official report of agricultural schools.