Farmers and in 1855 the state authorized a new

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farmers, and in 1855, the state authorized a new college to be “devoted to agriculture and to be independent of the university” (Danhof 71). The government became more involved in the creation of agricultural universities in 1862 when President Lincoln passed the Morrill Land Grant College Act, which begins with this phrase: “AN ACT Donating Public Lands to the several States and Territories which may provide Colleges for the Benefit of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts [sic].” The first agricultural colleges formed under the act suffered from a lack of trained teachers and “an insufficient base of knowledge,” and critics claimed that the new colleges did not meet the needs of farmers (Hurt 193). Congress addressed these problems with the then newly formed United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA and Morrill Act worked together to form “. . . State experiment stations and extension services . . . [that] added [to] . . . localized research and education . . .” (Baker et al. 415). The USDA added to the scientific and educational areas of the agricultural field in other ways by including research as one of the organization’s “foundation stone” (367) and by including these seven objectives: (1) [C]ollecting, arranging, and publishing statistical and other useful agricultural information; (2) introducing valuable plants and animals; (3) Periods occur before the end quotation mark if the citation information is given already in the sentence. If a source has more than two authors, use the first author’s last name followed by “et al.” Block quotes begin on a new line, are double- spaced, and are indented 1” from the margin. Do not use quotation marks. The citation information (author name and page number) follows the quote’s end punctua- tion.
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Angeli 7 answering inquiries of farmers regarding agriculture; (4) testing agricultural implements; (5) conducting chemical analyses of soils, grains, fruits, plants, vegetables, and manures; (6) establishing a professorship of botany and entomology; and (7) establishing an agricultural library and museum. (Baker et al. 14) These objectives were a response to farmers’ needs at the time, mainly to the need for experiments, printed distribution of new farming knowledge, and education. Isaac Newton, the first Commissioner of Agriculture, ensured these objectives would be realized by stressing research and education with the ultimate goal of helping farmers improve their operations (Hurt 190). Before the USDA assisted in the circulation of knowledge, however, farmers wrote about their own farming methods. This brings me to my next section in which I examine three handbooks written by farmers and connect my observations of the texts with the discussion of agricultural history I have presented above.
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