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Letter/label or iconT MAY be said that it took eighteen years to lay the foundation of agricultural instruction and research in Nebraska, and another eighteen years to build on this foundation. The eighteen years beginning about 1890 marked a period of great development for the Industrial College as well as the University itself. A School of Agriculture was early established and in a comparatively few years began to number its students in the hundreds. What the agricultural department of the Industrial College had heretofore lacked in numbers, this secondary school supplied. For the first time, the college farm began to be regarded as an educational center of its own. Then came its rapid development with the erection of several of the magnificent buildings of today. By 1909 agriculture had reached such importance in the Industrial College that a separate Agricultural College was once more established, with the farm campus for its headquarters.

   The University itself prospered greatly in these years, and this prosperity was reflected in the increasing development of the Agricultural College. The total enrollment in the University passed the 2,000 mark in the academic year 1899-1900 and the 3,000 mark in the year 1906-1907, these figures including students in all the schools and colleges. In 1899 it was stated that the University had students from as far west as California and as far east as Japan. More money for the support of the University and its Industrial College became available. The tax for the support of the University, which had been cut to a quarter of a mill and raised to three-eighths of a mill, during the early days of the University, was again restored to the full mill in 1899. Agricultural instruction and experimentation were benefited by the "Second Morrill Act" of 1890, the Nelson




Amendment of 1907, and the Adams Act of 1906, all bringing more money to the agricultural side of the institution. Agricultural extension began to develop with scores of farmers' institutes and short courses being held in every section of the state. Here we also find the beginning of home economics instruction for women, culminating in the latter part of this period in the erection of the home economics building on the farm campus. All in all, this was a period of development such as would hardly have been conceived to be possible in the eighties.

   James H. Canfield had been called from the Kansas State University to the chancellorship of the University of Nebraska in 1891. It was undoubtedly due to his leadership that the University received such a vigorous start during the early part of this period. With experience as a railway superintendent and legal as well as academic training, he was quite at ease in coping with the problems of the University. In four years the enrollment of the University nearly tripled. Even during panic times, he gave the optimistic advice, "If you cannot earn, you at least can learn." In short, he was the University's ambassador to the people of Nebraska.

   When Chancellor Canfield resigned in 1895 to become president of Ohio State University, and later librarian of Columbia University, he was succeeded by George E. MacLean, who had been serving as professor of English language and literature in the University of Minnesota. For four years Doctor MacLean was to guide the destinies of the institution. Chancellor MacLean displayed an especial interest in the work of the School of Agriculture, which was started during his administration. Chancellor MacLean resigned in August, 1899, and Chancellor E. ]Benjamin Andrews assumed the duties of the office in August, 1900, Dean Bessey acting as chancellor during the intervening year. During the eight years that he was associated with the institution, Chancellor Andrews saw the enrollment grow from 2,256 to 3,611. In 1900 there


He was associated with the early work in agricultural chemistry and has served as chancellor for over sixteen years




were fifty-six persons with professorial rank connected with the University; eight years later there were 390. During his administration there was a great development of the college farm. Samuel Avery, who for a number of years had been associated with the department of chemistry, as well as the experiment station, was acting chancellor of the University in 1908-09, and became chancellor on May 20, 1909. During his administration the College of Agriculture and the college farm have attained their present proportions, but that will be left for our succeeding chapter.


   Most people, even today, do not understand that there are both a School of Agriculture and a College of Agriculture. The School of Agriculture is a high school, which emphasizes agricultural and home economics instruction in connection with a secondary school course. The College of Agriculture is a separate college within the University. It presupposes that those entering upon its course of study shall have had a high school education.

   The School of Agriculture was undoubtedly the most important development from 1890 to 1908. Our readers no doubt recall the difficulty in securing any large number of students for the college courses in agriculture. Possibly one reason for this difficulty lay in the fact that those to whom a college course in agriculture would make a practical appeal generally did not have a high school education to begin with.

   The report of the Board of Regents, for the two years ending in 1896, tells something of the reasons for the establishment of the school:

   "The history of the University from the beginning shows similar attempts to satisfy the demands of the people of the state for practical Schools of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts. Various so-called 'short courses in agriculture' were given. The regents believe that at last they have found why the earlier attempts did not




succeed, and that they have a plan that will succeed. The old schemes failed because either they had too high a standard, or practically no educational standard whatever. The College of Agriculture required extensive preparation and four years of continuous study. Its graduates were few, and were weaned from the farm. The high schools of the state prepared for every college but the technical college: hence rarely did anyone enter the latter. The short courses were on the other hand of such low educational standard that youths were not tempted to resort to them. They were excellent as somewhat extended Farmers' Institutes and fulfilled their mission for adult farmers. A missing link in the state system of education is the technological high school, or high school of applied science. The apparatus and instruction necessary in such a school make it too expensive at the present time for the high schools of the state to add the technological courses in agriculture and the mechanic arts. The regents propose to supply this missing link until the state attains to its full development, when it would be possible that these technical schools would be supplanted by the development of the high schools of the state with reference to this work, just as the high schools of the state have at length made the Preparatory Department or the state high school at the University unnecessary. The regents have raised the standard of the short courses in agriculture to that of genuine secondary schools."

   As our readers recall, there had been heretofore abbreviated agricultural courses which required for completion one or two years of school. In the early nineties there was also a course for farmers given for a short time each winter. The rapid development of the beet sugar industry in Nebraska resulted in the establishment of a Sugar School, in the nineties. This will be discussed later. One also runs across mention of a dairy school in the early nineties, but its exact status is not apparent, the regents' report quoted above stating "in the School of Agriculture will be borne the Dairy School as a line of specialization of great value to the state of Nebraska." Later on a special dairy course appears, to have been given in the winter months.

   The establishment of the new type of agricultural school, which was a unit by itself rather than entirely a side line, marked a milestone in the progress of the Uni-




versity. How rapidly it was to grow is to be deduced from the fact that in 1908, E. A. Burnett, associate dean of the industrial College in charge of agriculture, was to remark that "about 20 per cent of all the students in the University are now registered in the School of Agriculture." The success of this school was to make possible the rapid development of the agricultural campus, with the erection of many of the splendid buildings of today.

   "In March, 1894, the regents announced that they proposed to open in September, 1895, a School of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts," reads their report for the two years ending with 1896. The first School of Agriculture did not open, however, until December, 1895. Fifteen students appeared for the course of instruction. It is interesting to note, perhaps, that it was fifteen students that entered upon the agricultural course of study in the University twenty-one years before. The School of Agriculture the first year held its sessions on the University campus downtown, because, as our readers know, the college farm as yet had small facilities for regular classroom work.

   The members of the faculty were drawn from the Industrial College and the Experiment Station. Those who were said to have actually given instruction the first year included Prof.. T. L. Lyon, Professor Bessey, Professor Bruner, Doctor Peters, Professor Swezey (meteorology) and Professor Card. On April 16, 1896, the regents appointed Professor Lyon director of the school and made plans for its further development. On the same day the regents organized the School of Mechanic Arts. We are not concerned to such a great extent with the latter, except possibly to note that the following fall it opened with an enrollment of sixteen. Altho it existed for a number of years, the School of Mechanic Arts never attained the popularity of the School of Agriculture. It aimed to do for the mechanically inclined young man what the School of Agriculture did for the farmer boy. In the School of Agriculture emphasis for the most part was placed on practical agricultural subjects.




   In 1896 a small dairy building was erected on the farm campus, the first building for purely instructional purposes. Today, veneered with brick, this represents about one-half of the building occupied by the departments of rural economics and poultry husbandry. A dairy laboratory was on the lower floor of the building and a lecture room on the second floor. The little old stone house now housed a chemical laboratory and a lecture room. Two rooms of the house were occupied by Professor Lyon's office furniture and library. The school was now ready to begin operations on the farm campus. There were two new instructors the second year, A. E. Davisson, who was later to become principal of the school, and A. L. Haecker, who was later to become professor of dairy husbandry. Mr. Davisson gave instruction in English, history, and mathematics, while Mr. Haecker was assistant in dairying. Thirty-three students attended the school the second year.

   The following summer an addition to the dairy building was erected and the entire structure veneered with brick. The faculty began to feel that agricultural education and the old college farm were coming into their own. Professor Davisson in his historical sketch of the School of Agriculture, published in Agriculture in January, 1909, tells something of the optimism prevailing at the beginning of the third year:

   "The writer very well recalls with what feelings of exultation the faculty prepared to open school in December. It was felt by Professor Lyon, Director of the School, that great things in agricultural education were about to happen. Some of the members of the faculty thought there would be more than one hundred students; others were more conservative, while the opinion was freely expressed by some of the professors on the campus - who were then opposed to agricultural education but who are now wholly in sympathy with the idea - that no greater number of students could ever be expected. As in the previous year, the school opened in December and fifty-one students registered."

   Only three women registered in the School of Agriculture during the first three years. This was owing to the




fact that there was "no provision for giving instruction in the various branches of domestic economy." However, this situation was to be shortly relieved by the establishment of a School of Domestic Science and several years later the School of Domestic Science, as far as the secondary school courses were concerned, was to be absorbed by the School of Agriculture, thus offering attractive courses of study to both men and women. But, because the work in home economics was related to both school and college, a brief sketch of its development is reserved for a later section. The average age of the students attending the School of Agriculture was twenty-one, indicating that most of the students had decided to secure further education several years after having been graduated from the district schools.

   At the close of school in March, 1898, Chancellor MacLean entertained the students at his home. He proposed that an association of agricultural students be formed for the purpose of continuing the work begun in the school. Chancellor MacLean and Dean Bessey were invited by the students to come to the farm and organize such an association. E. Von Forell of the Board of Regents had taken a special interest in the school and hearing of the organization of the students became convinced of the desirability of extending the course of study. The regents that April established a three years' course of study in the School of Agriculture, and also provided that students completing the course should be admitted to the technical agricultural group of the University.

   The organization of this Agricultural Students' Association in connection with the School of Agriculture was an interesting development. It aimed to tie up the boys with the school in more or less permanent fashion after they had left the institution and gone back to their homes. The object of the association, as stated in the constitution, was "the continuance of the habits of study and investigation formed while at the School and College of Agriculture; and




general co-operation with the Experiment Station and the publication of results." All persons who at any time had been connected with the School or College of Agriculture or the experiment station were eligible to regular membership, while anyone recommended by one of the regular members might become an associate member. Early officers of the association were President, C. Y. Thompson, West Point; vice president, Albert J. Wilson, Webster, secretary, J. H. Windhusen, Hooper; treasurer, Gerrard Montgomery, Firth; student member of the executive. council, John B. Miller, Lincoln.

   Reports of the work of this association are to be found among the experiment station bulletins. The idea behind this association was that its members could perform useful experiments on their own farms, as well as continue their study. Members of the faculty outlined, various experiments and books, making up a course of study, which could be undertaken in the student's spare time.

   Under the reorganization of the work of the School of Agriculture on a three-year basis, opening at the same time as the University in the fall, it was thought that the purely agricultural courses could be given only during the winter term at the middle of the year. Under this arrangement, those who came to the school for only the one term attended the same agricultural classes with those who were taking the full course, and consequently they were at a disadvantage. There was also criticism of the University on the ground that it was running a preparatory school and calling it a School of Agriculture. In 1901 the course of study was reorganized. There were still three years to the regular course, but school began in November and was out in April. There were two terms each year and agricultural subjects were given both terms. Such subjects as English, mathematics, botany, civics, and physics received attention along with the purely utilitarian subjects such as soils, crop production, breeding and feeding live stock, veterinary practice, orcharding, gardening, etc. There was doubt in




the minds of some as to whether there was enough English, history, and mathematics in the course, but it was stated that there was no way to remedy this, except by adding another year for graduation. The catalog issued in 1902 stated that students anticipating entering the technical agricultural group of the Industrial College would have to take an extra year of preparatory work, besides the three-year course. Later they seem to have been admitted upon completion of the school's three-year course. Several years afterward the three-year course of the school was to be extended and made a four-year course.

   The short course for those who could attend the School of Agriculture for only a short time during the middle of the winter was not abandoned. The winter course was entirely, of a practical nature, usually operating for not more than two months. A special dairy course is to be found described in some of the early catalogs of the school, and later short courses dealing with other special subjects were to be offered.

   The School of Agriculture continued to grow. With its growth there was a corresponding growth of the college campus. The demand for larger quarters for both the Experiment Station and the School of Agriculture led to the erection of Experiment Station hall in 1899-1900. Agricultural Hall, a building which has been the headquarters of the School of Agriculture ever since, was erected in 1904-05.

   Attendance was increasing rapidly. It passed the 100 mark in 1899-1900 when there were sixty-five students enrolled in the winter course and forty-nine enrolled in the three years' course. In 1902-03 there were 206 enrolled, in 1904-05 there were 332, in 1906-07 there were 429, while in the year 1908-09, not counting some summer session students, who were included in the enrollment for a few years about this time, the 600 mark was nearly reached. The first graduate of the school was David F. Stouffer of Schuyler, in fact, the only graduate in 1901. In 1903 there were ten graduates. In 1908 there were fifty graduates.




   In 1907-08 the School of Agriculture had become a coeducational institution and women were invited to take a course in home economics, corresponding to the boys' work in agriculture. It was at this time that the home economics building was erected. For several years a School of Domestic Science had been maintained and both secondary and college instruction had been given in home economics. Summer school instruction for the benefit of teachers had also helped to swell the total attendance of the School of Agriculture.

   A sketch of the School of Agriculture would not be complete without some mention of Prof. A. E. Davisson, who was connected with the school for about fifteen years, until his death in 1911. He was made headmaster of the school in 1897, its director in 1899, and in 1901 he became known as principal of the school. One of his early duties was to visit county institutes in an endeavor to interest teachers and superintendents in the work of the school. Forty-four counties were visited in 1899, and the same number in 1900. "The School of Agriculture, a wonderful power for good through all Nebraska, is, in a way, his monument."


   In a catalog or an announcement published by the University in 1894, a "Course 13" is listed under chemistry - domestic chemistry, consisting of two lectures with four hours of laboratory practice each week. If one turns to the University catalog published in June, 1896, one will find under the general head of chemistry, "Course 13." It consisted of "technical chemistry as applied to household economy. Qualitative and quantitative study of food material in general, with analyses of typical foods, and methods of detecting food adulterations." "Course 14," the second semester, consisted of "the chemistry of cleaning, methods of softening water, analyses of soaps, washing powders, and polishing powder, etc. Disinfectants and antiseptics." The course was in charge of Miss Rosa




Bouton, herself a graduate of the University of Nebraska. There were four prerequisite courses to this line of work, including both qualitative and quantitative analysis.

   In the original proposal for establishing "A School of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts," published in the regents' report of 1894, there was a provision that the courses should be open to women as well as men. The women were to take up domestic science while the men agricultural students were studying veterinary science, and while the men took up shop work, the women were to be studying industrial art. But as our readers recall, the School of Agriculture and the School of Mechanic Arts were separate, and only three women enrolled in the School of Agriculture the first three years, and there was "no provision for giving instruction in the various branches of domestic economy."

   In September, 1898, a School of Domestic Science was organized. Ten students registered for this course. College students also began to enroll for the work in domestic science, and the school apparently was forced to cater to the needs of both secondary and college students. "As soon as the work was begun college students began to apply for permission to register for domestic science," Miss Bouton, the director of the school stated, in the regents' report for the two years ending with 1900. "The request was granted and college credit given for this work."

   Further information is contained in Miss Bouton's report:

   "This year there is an enrollment of forty-one unrepeated names in the domestic science classes. The kitchen laboratory, when filled to its utmost limit, will accommodate only sixteen students. The great need of more room is therefore very evident to all who visit our crowded quarters.

   "The work is based on scientific principles, and is decidedly practical. Actual cooking is done. Careful attention is. given to the economy of time, strength and materials. The rational division of income is considered and the many problems which have to do with the furnishing and care of the home are studied.




   "In addition to the number of registered students referred to above, an extension class, which meets Saturday afternoons, has recently been organized."

   A two-year course in domestic science was first outlined in the catalog published in 1898, under the name of the School of Domestic Science. The school year in this course ran practically parallel with the regular University year, and was not abbreviated in fall and spring as was the School of Agriculture course, until it was actually absorbed in the School of Agriculture. The studies taken up in the School of Domestic Science included mathematics, English, physics, chemistry, political economy, free hand drawing, biology, domestic science, and physical training and hygiene. "The aim is to make the entire work in this course educational; to train the mind, and develop character in the kitchen as well as in the laboratory," the catalog stated regarding the work in domestic science. It was estimated that the cost of a year's schooling would be about $117.50, table board being obtainable at $2 a week, and rooms at $3.50 a month. About 1900 Miss Annette Philbrick from the Columbia College School of Domestic Science was added to the faculty. Miss Rosa Bouton, adjunct professor of chemistry, remained as director of the School of Domestic Science.

   The catalog containing the announcements for the academic year 1899-1900 listed domestic science as a regular college course, as well as the School of Domestic Science. There was a course in food economics, which consisted of "study of food principles, comparison of nutritive and money values of food materials, marketing, values of fuels, general cookery of cereals, vegetables, meats, soups, breads, desserts, etc." This was continued the second semester, with three hours credit each semester. There was another course in household economics, which included "location of house, plans for the construction of a house, application of chemical principles in cleaning and disinfection, study of light, heat, ventilation, water supply, plumbing, sewage,


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