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Bell, Florence C. (Florence Colfax), 1899- / Farmer co-ops in Wisconsin
([1941])

Pioneers began cooperation,   pp. 5-6 PDF (493.1 KB)


Number of cooperatives has greatly increased,   pp. 6-7 PDF (524.0 KB)


Page 6


Farmers' Marketing and Purchasing Associations Organized
    in Wisconsin, by Periods and Selected Commodity
                   Groups, 1876-1939.
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The 5 years from 1916 to 1920
wss the period of greatest
f  er activity in organizing
marketing and purchasing co.
operatives. A total of 697 as-
socitions were launched. Of
this number 371 werefor mak.
ing and for marketing daiy
products; 142 wyre local organ.
izations for ssembling and
shipping live stock; 85 svere
for purchasing supplies; and
38 for   rketng grain.
however, only about 10 cows, which
were not enough to produce a sufficient
quantity of milk for the profitable
manufacture of cheese. Anne solved
the problem by getting the neighbors
to pool their milk with the Pickett
supply, and she made it all into cheese
in the kitchen of her log cabin. Thus
a cooperative business venture began
at Lake Mills, Wis., where the Picketts
made cheese for many years.
  An experiment to form an idealistic
society for cooperative living and
working was made at Ripon, Wis., in
1844 by a group of American-born
farmers. They named it the Wiscon-
sin Phalanx. Although the society
was financially successful-it had
assets of $30,000 3 years after organ-
ization-some of the members became
dissatisfied and brought about the
peaceful dissolution of the organiza-
tion in 1850.
  The Wisconsin State Agricultural
Society, organized in 1851, became one
of the most active in the United States.
It helped to spread agricultural knowl-
edge by inaugurating the holding of
fairs, and by publishing its transac-
tions in large volumes. The Wiscon.
sin Legislature passed an act in 1897
creating a State board of agriculture,
which superseded the State agricul-
tural society.
Number oF Cooperatives
Has Greatly Increased
  From the humble beginning in 1840
agricultural cooperative enterprises be.
gan to develop in much greater num-
bers in Wisconsin during the last third
of the nineteenth century and have
continued to develop up to the pres-
ent time. During all of this period the
main reason for their organization has
been the desire on the part of farmers
to improve their economic welfare by
working together. Their desires have
been emphasized and crystallized into
action at various times by the pressure
of low prices, by changes taking place
in the agriculture of the State, and
by the activities of general farm organ-
izations and various governmental
agencies.
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