Ezra S. (Ezra Slocum) Carr.

The University of California and its relations to industrial education : as shown by Prof. Carr's reply to the grangers and mechanics; Prof. Swinton's testimony before the Legislature; the new education, by Columella; memorial to the Legislature by joint committee of the state grange and mechanics online

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Online LibraryEzra S. (Ezra Slocum) CarrThe University of California and its relations to industrial education : as shown by Prof. Carr's reply to the grangers and mechanics; Prof. Swinton's testimony before the Legislature; the new education, by Columella; memorial to the Legislature by joint committee of the state grange and mechanics → online text (page 2 of 13)
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appropriated for chemical and philosophical appratus which Pro-
fessor Fisher was sent to Europe to procure. (See Report of
Superintendent of Public Instruction, Regent Fitzgerald, for
1868-9, page 27.) Professor John Le Conte became acting Presi-
dent and applied himself with zeal to the task of creating an in-
stitution looking forward and not backward for its inspiration.
No man could have been found so well fitted by his training, his
tastes or his character for the just and impartial prosecution of
his work. The working plan as exhibited by him in the Pros-
pectus and first Register gave entire satisfaction to the Faculty
and friends of education. It declared the University to consist
of five distinct colleges, four of arts and one of letters, with a
full course of study continuing for four years, with appropriate
degrees. They were : 1. A State College of Agriculture.
2. A State College .of Mechanic Arts. 3. A State Col-
lege of Mines. 4. A State College of Engineenig. 5.
A State College of Letters.


The University was formally opened in Oakland in Septem-
ber, 1869, with about forty students, most of whom had pre-
viously belonged to the College of California. By reference to
the curriculum it will be seen that the special studies of agri-
culture and horticulture are confined to the third and fourth


years of the course ; the first two years being initial, it was
therefore thought best to employ a part of my time in bringing
the University to the notice of the people in the different parts
of the State. I had, as a Regent and Professor for eleven years
in another State University, become convinced of the necessity
of awaking a living interest among the people by making the
influence of the higher institutions felt upon the lower schools,
which are their natural feeders. I therefore, with the approba-
tion of the Board and Faculty, occupied my first year with two
lectures a week to the advanced class, with a course of twelve
lectures in the normal school, and in lecturing to agriculturists
and teachers at their various gatherings. Every moment of
leisure which I could spare from these occupations was spent in
studying the capacities of the University domain at Berkeley,
for such practical work as I knew most of the States were suc-
cessfully prosecuting in their agricultural colleges. I found the
domain to consist of something over 300 acres, amply sufficient
for all necessary experimental and illustrative farming and gar-
dening, though hardly commensurate with the agricultural im-
portance of our State. Well-sheltered valley land offered fa-
cilities for experiments in acclimatization, hillsides of various
exposures for orchards and vineyards and forestry. Mr. Lewell-
ing and other eminent horticulturists assisted me with their


January 5, 1870, I received a note from Secretary Moulder,
informing me that Doctor Merritt had been authorized to expend
$1,500 in " ornamenting the grounds " (without any plan having
been adopted), and suggesting that I should confer with him re-
specting the "introduction of new and valuable plants." I did
so, and replied to Mr. Moulder the next day as follows :

* * " :,s * * " 1 have been very desirous of laying
out my work in the Agricultural Department so as to loose no
time in demonstrating its utility. My understanding of what
the work is to be, aside from teaching, is substantially what you
hint at in your letter, and while awaiting an invitation from the
Board or some member of it to express my views of the proper
disposition of the grounds to be devoted to agricultural and hor-
ticultural purposes, I have opened correspondence with various
parties at home and abroad with a view to obtaining seeds and
plants for naturalization. I have written to Milne-Edwards of
the G-arden of Plants Paris, for advice, plans, etc.; to Kew Gar-
dens ; to Dr. Mueller of the Botanic Gardens at Melbourne,
Australia, and I hope to be able, through Governor Low, to


secure something from China and Japan. " We want on the
University grounds an experimental garden, where the value and
mode of culture of all important crops can be accurately deter-
mined, and new things tried on a small scale, something like
what (as the accompanying document will show) is being done in
the University of Wisconsin. Besides this, we want proper hor-
ticultural gardens where not only the tea plant (Mr. Moulder
had specially recommended experiments with the tea plant,) but
the mulberry, and every variety of grape, fruit and nut which
can be grown Avith or without protection can be studied. The
new planting of each year ought hereafter to be of new varie-
ties of trees and shrubs ; we ought to show the finest hedges,
screens and belts of timber trees ; all that is of economic value
in the vegetable world."

Dr. Merritt complied with Mr. Moulder's request about the tea
plants, but my opinion was never asked concerning the other
planting. It consisted of a half dozen kinds of the commonest
acacias, blue gums and pines distributed in masses all over the
grounds, as appears at the present time.

Early in May I sent the following communication to the
Board :

University of California, May 5, 1870.

To the Honomble Regents of the University — Gentlemen : In view of the
probability that the University will continue to occupy its present quarters in
Oakland for a longer time than was at first contemplated, I would respectfully
ask you to take such action in behalf of the Agricultural and Horticultural de-
partments as will secure their practical efficiency when the removal to Berkeley
gives an opportunity for field instruction. Unlike the other Colleges of the
University this requires something more than an outlay of money for its equip-
ment. The loss of a single season of growth is a serious one, because an exhibition
of the methods of scientific culture is needed to demonstrate the value of the
training which we propose to give. What Cornell and Amherst, and various
other Universities on the same foundation as ours have done at the outset, in
laying out experimental farms, planting orchards and botanic gardens, erections
of horticultural buildings, etc., it seems to me important to have done here, with
the least possible delay. It is one of the most important objects of this Depart-
ment to attract students into the business of agriculture, and it will be easy to
draw them to Berkeley, not only from California but from the older States, as soon
as we can offer the same facilities for study which other institutions afford, nature
having given us advantages to be found nowhere else ; and it is important for
us to command the hearty interest of farmers and fruit growers in our work, by
experiments made on a small but accurate scale, and carefully reported.

With an outlay not exceeding that already made to the other Colleges the
grounds of the University may be made in the next five years a complete exposi-
tion of the agricultural and horticultural products of California. With this
object in view I beg leave to offer the following suggestions :

First — That the Board immediately locate such portions of the University
domain as are to be devoted to agriculture and horticulture, and cause the same
to be accurately surveyed and mapped. In my judgment the minimum appor-
tionment for various purposes should be nearly as follows: For farming proper,
including ground for students and other experiments, thirty acres ; for an or-
chard of specimen fruit and nut trees, planted with a view to study by catalogue.


forming a museum, of pomology, fifteen acres ; for vineyard, mulberry, textile
and oil prducing plants, five acres ; for botanic garden proper, i. e. a collection
of all useful medicinal, native and foreign plants capable of acclimatization, in-
cluding an arboretum, twenty acres ; and for vegetables and small fruits, five acres.
Reservations should also be made in a manner to subserve general ornamental
effects, of places for belts of timber, wo »dland, etc., to illustrate forestry. Second
— That the supervision and direction of this work be assigned to the Professor of
Agriculture and Horticulture, who shall keep accounts of expenditures, records
of plantations, making an annual exhibit of the same to the Secretary as a part
of the Regents' report, and those demonstrating the profits of every crop and of
the methods of culture adopted, and that as soon as practicable, by the erection
of a farm house or such other residence as the Board may deem proper, the Ag-
ricultural Professor move to Berkeley and have these interests in charge. Third
— That a fixed annual appropriation be made for the purchase of seeds, nursery
stock, and expense in obtaining foreign plants. I would also respectfully sug-
gest that the building designated for the College of Agriculture be constructed
with reference to the use of an Agricultural College, whatever others it may
temporarily serve. The building so called on the present plans is arranged sim-
ply for a school of chemistry and metallurgy

I remain your obedient servant,

P. S. — Since writing the foregoing, I see by reference to the organic Act, that
the superintendence of the work referred to is made the duty of the Secretary of
the Board, but the work itself constitutes the essential feature of an agricultural
college, and I therefore submit these considerations to the Board, the immediate
outlay being inconsiderable in comparison with the importance of results.


To this letter I received no answer, verbal or otherwise, unless
the following resolution of the Board passed June 21, 1870, may-
be so considered :

Resolved, that in order to extend the advantages of the Agricultural College of
the University to the largest number of citizens possible, and especially to persons
practically interested in farming, fruit culture, wine making, wool growing and
stock raising, the Professor of Agriculture, Agricultural Chemisty and Horticul-
ture shall visit, as far as possible, all the agriculture centers of population in the
State, and in evsry convenient neighborhood, where suitable accommodations can
be obtained, deliver one or more lectures, illustrated where practicable, upon sub-
jects connected with agriculture likely to be of most value and interest to the
people of the locality. In these lectures it shall be his care to disseminate such
information derived from study, from observation, from correspondence and gener-
al experience as will be of practical use to the farmers, fruit growers and stock
raisers, having special reference to the imparting of reliable information upon the
nature and best mode of culture of such new crops, fruits, trees and vines (and
the preparation of their products for market) as may be adapted to the soil and
climate of California, and likely to increase the productive resources of the State.
His course of lectures shall embrace the branches for which instruction is now
provided in the University, viz : Agriculture proper, Agricultural Chemistry,
Zoology, Horticulture, Geology, Veterinary Science, Botany, Rural Economy,
Meteorology, Diseases of Animals and Plants, Forestry, and all kindred subjects:
it being the intention of the Regents by the course here adopted to transfer the
Agricultural College of the University from the closet to the field, and make its
instruction of practical value to the people of the State. These lectures shall be
free, and public notice shall be given of the time and place of their delivery. his tour through the State, the Professor of Agriculture shall carefully
examine the growing- crops, study their culture, noting particularly any exception-
al influences calculated to improve or injure them, and communicate the result
of his observations in his lectures. He shall take special pains to collect statis-


tics of the crops, flocks and herds of the State and shall report them from time
to time for publication. He shall open communication with all local Agricultu-
ral Societies, and so far as possible, place his services at their disposal and deliver
his instructions under their auspices.

Resolved, That the Board of Regents will themselves procure, from all quarters,
at home and abroad, rare and valuable seeds and will distribute the same, through
their Secretary and Professor of Agriculture, throughout the State, to such
persons as desire to test their growth.

These resolutions are published entire in the statements of
the Regents already referred to (page 69) as an evidence of their
good will to the Agricultural College.

Though this resolution was absurd in its nature and became
a jest among the teachers of the State, I endeavored to carry
out its spirit, as far as my entire time, including vacations, and
the constant and gratuitous aid of my family, permitted. The
correspondence elicited by this resolution, which was published
in nearly every newspaper in the State, became no small part of
each day's duties. This resolution has never been revoked, al-
tei'ed or amended. The only change in the programme thus laid
down, of which I have ever been informed, was in a resolution
adopted by the Regents at a meeting held November 22, 1871,
when the Secretary was ordered to notify me " to incur no ad-
ditional expense for traveling while delivering lectures, until
further notice." During the previous year the Board had paid
my traveling expenses. "You will observe," the Secretary
stated, in his official communication, " that the order does not
necessarily involve the discontinuance of your valuable lectures,
but only the cessation of further cost to the University. The
various bodies and associations for whose benefit these lectures
are delivered should pay all necessary expenses," etc. From
that day to this the Board have never incurred a cent of ex-
penditure for any such purpose.


At a meeting of the Board, October 4, 1870, Mr. Butterworth
introduced the following resolution, which was adopted :

Resolved, That the Professorship of Chemistry, Mining and Metallurgy be
abolished, and that the duties of the Chair be devolved on the Professor of Agri-
culture and Agricultural Chemistry.

This abolished Professor Fisher, who was allowed his salray
to the end of the current month. It is proper to state that
neither Professor Fisher nor myself, President Durant or any
member of the Faculty had the slightest intimation of thif ac-
tion until after it was accomplished. At the same meeting
(October 4th.) the Secretary was instructed to cast the ballot of
the Board for the following gentlemen "to fill the various Chairs
in the Medical Department of the University." 1 was elected


Professor of Chemistry. Having just completed a course of
fifty-six lectures on that subject, the duties of our respective
chairs having occupied Dr. Le Conte and myself during the pre-
vious vacation in the University proper, these simultaneous
appointments demonstrate the sentiments of the Board as to my
" unfitness " and " incompetency."


A very significant fact, taken in connection with the new
duties of the Agricultural Professor, and which has very im-
portant bearings upon later measures, was the proposition of
the Executive Committee, through Mr. Butterworth, to dispose
of "certain lands outside of the University site, which could
with propriety be disposed of, as they are not needed for the use
of the University." The appraised value when the land was
purchased was $18,000 for building lots, $14,000 for one hun-
dred and twelve acres of so-called "mountain land," and $2,800
for another parcel — in all, $35,000, estimated value. (See re-
port in Alta California of meeting of Board, November 10 or
11, 1870.) This included "all the College Water Company's
rights." (See " Statements " of Regents to Joint Legislative
Committee, March 3, 1873, page 40.) It included the best land
for agricultural and horticultural purposes in the possession of
the University. This transaction, so fatal to the prospects of
the Agricultural College, was actually con sum mated November
11, 1870, my first and only knowledge of it being obtained through
the newspapers. I was told, and believe, that President Durant
strongly disapproved of the action when it came to his knowl-
edge, and a former Trustee of the College of California took the
ground that it was illegal. The object attained was the purchase
of the Brayton property, effected by the Begent who was acting
as the agent of the estate.

This transaction is claimed by the Regents to have added
materially to the property of the University and " profitable to
the State." The property parted with, obtained by donation of
the College of California, consisted of nearly if not quite 200
acres of land, immediately adjoining the present domain and site
of the University, which the Regents say on page 46 of their
statements is " worth at low valuation, $1,000 an acre." Esti-
mating the value of the water rights, disposed of in this sale,
and which to the Agriculture College are inestimable — and
without considering the importance to the University of holding
theose contiguous " parcels ; " had they not been required for Ag-
ricultural experiments, or the illegality of employing any part
of the land fund in the purchase of property for which the Uni-


versity had no use, (the last block purchased,) the loss to the
University in money value alone may be stated at from $175-
200,000 dollars. The College Block recently sold for $54,000,
was already owned by the University when the Brayton pur-
chase was made.

Allow me to state in this connection that Msssrs. Marshal P.
Wilder, Elwanger and Barry of Eochester, and Downing of
New burg, had visited the University grounds, and gave me the
benefit of their experience in regard to their uses. Twenty emi-
nent agriculturists and editors from the Eastern States were taken
to them that summer, and finally General Horace Capron, from
the Agricultural Bureau at Washington, fresh from a visit to
each of the Eastern Agricultural Colleges, made valuable sug-
gestions respcting our practical work, which suggestions were
duly communicated to the Board of Regents. The manner in
which I attempted to carry out the wishes of the Regents will
appear in the reports of my work, made to them from time to
time. That they warmly commended it will be seen in their
official report to the Governor (see page 12 of Regents report for
1872), where they say : " Professor Carr has been diligently en-
gaged in lecturing in different parts of the State. He has had
large and attentive audiences, and it is not too much to say that
through him thousands have received the benefit of the instruc-
tion of the Agricultural College of theUniversity."

The subjoined are true copies of my


Oakland, November 10, 1870.
lo Hie President and Board of Regents: Since the date of my last communi-
cation, and during the summer vacation, I have given a course of fifty-six
lectures in the Medical Department of the Uinversity (late Toland Medical Col-
lege). I have also given nine addresses before the State and two County Teachers'
Institutes, and four addresses on different public occasions. To accomplish this
I have traveled about two thousand miles; have spoken in San Francisco, Oak-
land, Pacheco, Marysville, Vallejo, San Jose. Sacramento, Stockton, Jackson and
Chico, to not lesa than thirty thousand people, endeavoring to interest them in a
rational development of our industrial interests, and to show the relations of these
to education, and especially to make the objects and scope of the University and
its practical value to the State more thoroughly understood. The policy of the
Board in popularizing the University, by bringing its instructions into direct
contact with the people, in the admission of young ladies, in the development of
the Military Department, meets universal approval. In many places the people
have pledged themselves enthusiastically to its support. In all cases I have
declined proffered compensation for service or expense, explaining that I was doing
the work assigned me by you. The people have replied that they will work for the
University through their representatives. At present, in addition to outside
work, I am delivering in the University three experimental lectures a week on
chemistry and its applications, to a class of twenty young men and about the
same number of young women, which numbers are daily increasing. It was a
part of my plan to have made a report before the close of the present year to the
Board of Regents on the industrial and agricultural interests of California, con-


taining a catalogue of products, especially of wines, grapes, wine growers, etc.,
for use at home and abroad, " an industrial year book," for 1870. Such an
exhibit of the capacities and cultures of California, published by authority of the
Board of Regents, would not only command more of public respect and attention
than the same information derived from other sources, but would immediately
demonstrate the activity and usefulness of the University. Since writing the
foregoing, November 10th, I have given a course of three lectures at Watsonville,
three at Santa Cruz and two at Sacramento.

University of California,
Oakland, July 18, 1871.
Gentlemen of the Board of Regents : In accordance with your instructions I
have since the commencement of the present year, in addition to my regular
University instruction, given a course of twelve experimental lectures in Brayton
Hall to the Preparatory Department, a course of eleven lectures to the pupils of
the Deaf and Dumb and Blind Asylum (some of these will enter the University)
six to the students of the Mechanic Arts College in San Francisco, three addition-
al lectures in the city, seven in the different towns of Alameda county, eight in
Stanislaus, four in Contra Costa, five in Sacramento, five in Solano and one in
Napa county — sixty-one in all. These lectures, with few exceptions, have been
experimental ones, as fully illustrated as those given in the University, and all
related to agricultural and educational matters. To accomplish this I have trav-
eled over three thousand miles. As I could not be absent more than two days at
a time, exclusive of Sunday, I have been unable to visit the more remote parts of
the State, and shall occupy a part of the vacation in this work. The lectures
have invariably been well attended, and I find no lack of appreciation or inter-
est in the work the University proposes to do for the people of the State, where-
ever it is understood. I have also made several excursions (at my own expense)
into different parts of the State for the purpose of obtaining and giving infor-
mation with regard to important industrial operations. During the collegate
year I have given three experimental lectures per week, occupying four hours
time (each lecture requiring some three hours of laboratory work in its prepara-
tion) to the third class ; in addition, during the past term, one lecture a week on
health and bygiene to the fourth class. During the past few weeks I have un-
packed the apparatus belonging to my department, and arranged it as far as
practicable in the laborator yand new lecture-room. I have also added to the tech-
nical cabinet several valuable sets of specimens illustrating important arts. In
addition to the work of the past year, the curriculum of the College of Agricul-
ture and Mines will call for instruction the coming year in agricultural and an-
alytical chemistry, assaying and mining, agriculture and horticulture. Of ne-
cessity this requires more instructional force, in reference to which permit me to
make one or two suggestions ; First — That the Board allow me to employ a com-
petent and acceptable assistant for such analytical work and assaying as may be
required, and to work with the students in the laboratory. Second — That dur-
ing the last term of the coming year, or a portion of the same, a competent per-
son be employed to give a course of lectures on mining. The appointment of a
full Professor of Mining, without an assistant as above indicated, would give no
aid to the Chair of Chemistry and Department of Agriculture, while the above

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Online LibraryEzra S. (Ezra Slocum) CarrThe University of California and its relations to industrial education : as shown by Prof. Carr's reply to the grangers and mechanics; Prof. Swinton's testimony before the Legislature; the new education, by Columella; memorial to the Legislature by joint committee of the state grange and mechanics → online text (page 2 of 13)