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To Mary Ann Putnam, of Danvers, for wrought lace veil, a gratuity of
$1 00 To Mrs. David Hopkinson, Bradford, for wrought lace veil, a gratuity of
1 00 To Mrs. Judith Colby, aged 91 years, of West Newbury, for two shirts, a gra
050 To Mrs. Emily P. Fowler, of Danvers, for
two wrought cricket covers, a gratu-
1 00 To Rebecca P. Eveleth, of Danvers, for
two wrought cricket covers, a gratu-
0 50 To George Dawson, of Ipswich, for one pair of boots, a gratuity of
1 00 To Mrs. Myra Abbot, of Bradford, for va
rious pieces of wrought work, a gra-
1 00 To Mrs. Lucy Holt, of Andover, for wrought dress, a gratuity of
1 00 To Louisa S. Kimball, of Bradford, for
wrought collar and needle book, a
1 00 To Eunice Cleaves, of Wenham, for net shawl, a gratuity of
1 00 To Mrs. James Tewksbury, of West New
bury, for wrought quilt, a gratuity of 1 00 To Caroline E. Bradstreet, of Newbury
port, for wrought lace, a gratuity of 1 00 To E. J. Bowditch, of Salem, for work bag, a gratuity of
050 To Ira Š. Tyler, of Georgetown, for dressed leather, a gratuity of
1 00 To Col H. K. Oliver, . of Salem, for bee
hives and box of honey, a gratuity of 4 00 To Messrs. D. & J. Pulsifer, of Salem, for painted carpets, a gratuity of
2 00 All which is respectfully submitted. For the committee,
I. P. PROCTOR. Georgetown, September 30, 1840.
ON CULTIVATION OF CROPS.
The committee on the cultivation of crops to whom were referred the three claims which are annexed, after considering the same, have concluded to REPORT:
That they award the premium of ten dollars, to Mr. Stuart, and they recommend that a gratuity of five dollars to each be paid to Messrs. Putnam and Dodge.
It is understood that entries of other claims were made which have not been prosecuted. The committee regret that such should be the case, especially as it may have been occasioned by a failure in the anticipated abundance of the harvest. But even if such have been the events, it might still be useful to know to what causes the disappointments have been owing. The point to be gained by the publication of statements and reports, is to render cultivation more intelligent, by communicating to the whole the experience of each.
So far as there has been anything peculiar, or in the nature of an experiment in the mode of rearing the crop which has failed, it is perhaps equally important that the details of the cultivation should be laid before the public, as if the result had been one of complete success. That course of culture would then cease to be an experiment, and the intelligent farmer would be careful to avoid a repetition of the same error. All experience in human affairs must of necessity consist of evil as well as of good, and the record that contains only the good, and omits all history of the evil, cannot but be imperfect. But if any improvement in the annals of Agriculture is desired in this respect, it is perhaps only to be accomplished by a change in the principles upon which premiums are awarded.
A great crop may be the result of merely fictitious circumstances, and the skill or judgment of the cultivator may have very little to do with it. An abundant harvest from a fertile field in a favorable season, proves little more than that the cultivator did nothing to impede. the operations of nature. The largest possible production must require the best soil; agricultural skill is independent of the soil on which it is exercised, and displays itself in overcoming the difficulties of the ground, and rendering it, in spite of them, subservient to its interests and purposes. Premiums should be awarded upon evidence of merit in the conduct of the crop. It is very easy to be perceived that as much pains may have been taken, and as much ability displayed in a field, which from some unforeseen cause, from the soil, from the seed, the ploughing, the manure and the season not being all adapted to each other, or from any peculiar unfitness in any two or more of them, which has limited the produce to a medium yield, as in another which has afforded one of the largest crops.
Take for instance corn or maize, of which there are reckoned about one hundred and thirty kinds or varieties. Each of these has probably its choice of soil, and may also prefer a certain depth of soil, a sort and quality of manure, a season of planting, hoeing, &c., peculiar to itself, and which may be requisite in order to its highest state of perfection. It is well known that different aspects of the same mountains, and the different soils of adjoining fields have for centuries produced wines of very great diversity of quality and value. The established character of the wine is maintained by the greatest nicety in the cultivation of the vine, and a settled course of culture is carefully adhered to. It is perhaps strange that science should have aided luxury so long and so much, and should have so long neglected those subjects on which the ease and comfort of the community depend. We have every reason to suppose that there is an adaptation between
the variety of the soil, and some kinds of corn, which if discovered would promote the value of the produce, and which in the perfection of agricultural science would be readily discoverable. It is very common to hear men expressing a preference for one kind of corn over another, but it is not often that anything is said which would show that it is thought that the different nature of the soil on different farms has any connexion with the success or failure of certain varieties of corn.
Indeed, rules of adaptation would be the necessa
result of a knowledge of the chemical qualities of the soil cultivated, of the manures applied, and of the properties requisite to the best development of the seed.
Much has been of late spoken and written upon the wages of labor. It seems to have been assumed on all hands, that labor is much better paid in this country than in Europe, and that the elevated condition of the American laborer is owing to this fact. If these opinions are true, and of this there is some doubt, they are neither true to the extent that they are generally entertained. To say that so much is paid per day for labor is an arbitrary measure of the value of labor. The true measure is to see how much work is performed for a given sum. The American laborer has ordinarily greater bodily strength and much more physical endurance, united with an energy or spirit almost wholly wanting to the European. Besides these he is more ingenious in the application of his strength, and commonly has put into his hands an instrument far more convenient and effective than is used for the same purpose in Europe. The laborers upon the Prussian railroads may be seen toiling with slow and spiritless motion, turning up the earth with small spoon-shaped shovels fastened upon handles, made of four or five feet in length, from poles or the limbs of trees, with no means of steadying them except the grasp of the hands. To balance such an instrument, so as to use
it at all, it will be seen requires a great expenditure of strength over that which is necessary to a shovel balanced and handled as those are which are used by
Then it will raise scarcely more than half as much at a time, and is raised hardly more than half as often. Let any man calculate the difference in the work accomplished, and he will find that there is not the difference in the actual price of labor that there is in the daily pay. A day's labor in the one case is a very different matter from what it is in the other, and we shall make a great mistake, if we suppose that in both countries they have reference by the same expression to the same quantity of work done.
The same principle applied to all the operations of the culture of land, illustrate to the proprietor how much he depends upon a judicious mode, to obtain large wages or returns for his labor.
As to the cultivation of crops, it has been for some years said of grains, that it has cost more: to raise them here than they could be obtained for from the west and south; and yet the means of communication are constantly improving, and bringing us more immediately into competition with those states. But this scarcely diminishes the value, and does not at all dispense with the necessity for these crops upon the farms of New England, either in a public or private point of view. Whatever the farmer raises by his own labor, he is not compelled to find the money for its purchase. And the cultivation of corn and grain is a part of the process by which he is enabled to furnish fresh butter, beef, and pork for the market, the sale of which, is, in a great measure, his resource for the supply of those things which his farm will not produce. Besides, it prevents the money being sent away for their purchase in other places, by which a tendency to its scarcity, and the consequent depreciation of all prices, is avoided. The committee deem it worthy of some future