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There are yet some premiums to be paid and some books to bo purchased.
The officers for the year 1852 are as follows: Robert Rome of Geneseo, President; Aaron Barber, Avon, H. E. Smith, York, and Samuel J. Mills, Mount Morris, Vice Presidents; Henry V. Colt, Geneseo, Secretary; Ephraim Cone, Treasurer.
MADISON. REPORT. JAMES H. DUNBAR, PRESIDENT. In again reporting the condition of the Madison County Agricultural Society, and of the agricultural interests generally in this county, I have a pleasing task to perform. There is no longer any room to doubt that the association over which I have the honor to preside, is doing a good and efficient work among our farmers, the necessity beginning to be felt for educated farmers. The improved appearance of the farms, farm buildings and fences, in our county, the many palpable benefits resulting from the increasing interest attached to the culture of the soil, the new and superior breeds of horses, cattle, and other stock, introduced, and the manifold specimens of mechanical ingenuity and ornamental taste and skill exhibited at our county fairs, are conclusive evidence of this fact. I very much doubt whether there is any portion of the State where within the last ten years a more marked improvement has been observable in all the departments of agriculture than here.
The financial condition of the society is perfectly sound, and shows cheering evidences of prosperity. Our receipts this year, including the last year's balance, have amounted to $805.24, while our expenditures for premiums, incidental expenses, &c., have reached $606.79 ; leaving a balance in the treasury, of $198.46. $21 worth of Cultivators and Transactions were awarded as premiums.
The eleventh Annual Fair and Cattle Show of the Society was held at Hamilton, on the first and second days of October. The [Ag. Trans. 1852.]
weather was most delightful during the entire time, and the attendance from all parts of the county was unusually large. The managers of the society had resolved at this fair, to enclose the grounds and charge an admission fee of 12 cents to all persons not members of the society, and some considerable anxiety was felt concerning the results. The system was found to work admirably, however, and brought into the Treasury the sum of $237.69. I have no doubt that the agricultural societies of all our sister counties would find it for their benefit to adopt this rule. The display of fine stock of the several varieties was far superior to any previous occasion of the kind, and the same might be said of the products of the dairy, together with the fruits, grains, and root crops exhibited. The ladies' department was also deserving of the high commendation which it received from all visitors. This has always been one of the most attractive features in these annual gatherings, and it is my earnest hope that it may long continue so, for I believe that it tends to benefit, in a higher degree than might at first be observable.
I shall not of course be expected to enter into any minute details concerning this exhibition, for to do so would require a volume. I can only speak of some of its most deserving features. Although the native breed of cattle is still the most common in our country, the Durham and Devon stock are rapidly increasing, and almost every thorough farmer has a cross of one or both of these breeds, while full blooded specimens of each are by no means uncommon. Many very superior Durham and Devon cattle, as well as grades and natives, were exhibited at the fair, by Messrs. S. P. Chapman, W. K. Porter, John B. Coe, J. Muir, sen., Alpheus Morse, J. D. Ledyard, D.Osgood, and many others. The two first named gentlemen are among our most enterprising breeders of Durham cattle, and within the past season have introduced many superior animals from the stock of Geo. Vail, Esq., of Troy. In the department of horses there has been a marked improvement in our county within the past few years. The display of these noble animals on this occasion, was unusually large and attractive. The most elegant breeds exhibited were the “ Kentucky Hunters,” “Morgans” and
“Eutaws.” The superb horse “ Kentucky Hunter,” owned by J. Pope, and the Eutaw horse “ Virginius,” owned by Mr. W. Porter, fairly distanced all competition.
Of sheep, both of the fine and coarse wooled breed, there was a very respectable exhibition. The swine were also well represented; I wish to notice particularly a new breed of hogs, entitled Suffolks, introduced into the county by S. A. Gilbert, of Hamilton, and imported by Mr. Wier, of New Hampshire. I think them very superior, and they may be crossed with our native breeds to good advantage. There was by far the largest and best exhibition of poultry ever seen at a fair in this county ; I was gratified to observe what I did not before realize, that this was receiving its full share of attention from our farmers. The entire southern section of our county is peculiarly adapted to grazing, and I hazard nothing in saying, that there is no portion of the State, where there are better dairymen than here. The cheese of Messrs. Burchard, Hoppin, Morse, Sims, Rhoades, and many others whom I might name is always eagerly sought for, while some of our butter would compare favorably with the best productions of Orange county. The coarser grains generally succeed best in most of the towns of our county, though there are some fine wheat growing sections in the northern part. Considerable attention is paid to the cultivation of hops and tobacco, in some sections with good success. The farmers and gardeners of our county, are just beginning to discover that they can raise as good fruit as any of their neighbors. This fact was entirely evident by the unusually large and tempting display of apples, peaches, plums, grapes, pears, quinces, &c., seen on this occasion.
The silk growing interest was as usual well represented, and the specimens of mechanical industry and skill were numerous and creditable, but it is unnecessary for me to notice them at length. The second day was devoted to the plowing match, the address, the reading of the reports of the several committees, and the transaction of the ordinary business of the society. The address by Prof. S. B. Woolworth of Homer, was truly able and
instructive, and was listened to with marked attention by a large audience.' I cannot leave the subject of this fair without awarding to the citizens of Hamilton, and the ladies in particular, the credit which they eminently deserve, of having by their untiring exertions, materially contributed to make it what it really was, the most agreeable and interesting occasion of the kind, ever known in the county.
The subject of an agricultural college is exciting considerable attention in our county, and there seems to be a universal feeling in favor of the establishment of such an institution. The view which the society takes of the matter will be seen by the following resolutions which were unanimously adopted at its Annual Meeting, on the second day of the fair.
Resolved, That our county is emphatically an agricultural district, that when the farmer is morally and intellectually elevated, the country is elevated; that their prosperity is secured only by an intelligent and understanding bestowal of labor upon the soil we cultivate; that to secure this, the sons and daughters of the farmer should share the advantages of the higher branches of learning applied to their calling: that a share of the proceeds of the Literature Fund, should of right be bestowed upon the profession of the farmer. Therefore,
, Resolved, That our members of the Legislature and Senator, be requested to use their most earnest endeavor to secure the passage of a law at their next session, providing for the establishment of an Agricultural college and experimental farm.
I earnestly hope that our Legislature will give an early and favorable consideration to this subject. Prof. Gurdon Evans, of this county, has done much for the past few years for the advancement of the cause of scientific agriculture among us. As an agricultural chemist he has few if any superiors. He is at present engaged in the preparation of an agricultural and geological work, accompanied with a map of every farm in the county, which I have no doubt will be a work of great merit and prove highly serviceable to the farmer.
Our grain crops in this county, except corn, have been universally good. Corn, owing to the unfavorableness of the season, has come in light, and the quality inferior. Potatoes were not affected by the blight as seriously as last year, and in some instances the crops have reached over 200 bushels per acre, which, considering the almost universal failure heretofore, is very gratifying to our farmers. No discoveries as yet to prevent the blight, though our county abounds with quack remedies for the disease. Where the best crops have been raised, farmers have been particular to plant the hardiest variety on rich dry land as early as possible after the frost is out of the ground, and a fair crop has generally been the result.
A few experiments have been made in wire fences, which I am happy to say is getting into favor on account of its cheapness and probable durability. I am inclined to think for inside fencing it will meet our expectations.
A recent discovery of a bed of shell marl, on the border of a natural pond near Poolville, in the town of Hamilton, is likely to prove a valuable acquisition to our manure heap. I am informed it contains about eighty per cent. of pure lime when burned.
In conclusion, allow me to say that the intelligent farmers of Madison county, convinced as they are of the utility of agricultural societies, will always heartily and triumphantly sustain the one among them.
Officers for 1852.-Elijah Morse, Eaton, President; Thomas A. Clark, Sullivan, Corresponding Secretary ; Charles D. Miller, Peterboro, Recording Secretary ; Alpheus Morse, Eaton, Treasurer.
GRAIN CROPS.-WHEAT.-MR. ATKINSON'S STATEMENT.
Bingley Mills, Cazenovia, Jan. 12, 1852. Mr. J D. LEDYARD, JR.-Dear Sir, I herewith send you according to your request, a statement of my crop of wheat. I sowed on the 12th day of Sept., 1850, on six acres of ground, eleven bushels