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Wisconsin Dairymen's Association / Eleventh annual report of the Wisconsin Dairymen's Association : held at Elk-horn, Wis., January 31, and February 1 and 2, 1883. Report of the proceedings, annual address of the president, and interesting essays relating to the dairy interests

Roberts, I. P.
The past, present, and future of dairying,   pp. 70-79 PDF (2.1 MB)

Page 75

From the small quantity of butter and cheese manufac- 
tured in the days of milk-crocks and stone-weighted cheese 
press the- amount has swelled to 806,672,071 pounds of the 
former and 243,157,850 pounds of the latter; almost 31 pounds 
of butter to one pound of cheese. Butter, it will be seen, is 
"king of the dairy." 
From the spring-house we have moved into the superbly 
steam-fitted, engine-puffing, improved, ventilated factory 
furnished with all the conveniences and appliances that hu- 
man ingenuity can patent. We consume and export nearly 
300 millions of dollars' worth of dairy products annually. 
From small beginnings dairying has grown to be one of the 
great agricultural industries of the nation. This is the pres- 
ent. The first question that arises is: What have been the 
leading causes which have produced these marvelous re- 
sults? They may be briefly stated under four heads: Cheap 
and abundant land; the associated factory system; rapid 
and cheap transportation; and, last and greatest, dissemina- 
tion of technical knowledge by earnest, self-sacrificing men, 
by conventions, .and by the press. 
Let those who will, make fun of education, but the fact re- 
mains that knowledge is power. Twelve years since a poor 
boy from the South came to the Iowa Agricultural College 
and spent three years. He then spent one year at Cornell 
University, then two in Germany, and to-day, at thirty-one 
years of age, he is Governor of Colorado. This is an ex- 
treme case, you say; well, let us take the hired farm boy at- 
tending the district school in the winter, doing chores for 
his board, eating at the family table, with his ears as well 
as his mouth open, reading his employer's papers in the 
family sitting-room at night, and on every hand gaining 
knowledge rapidly from the very atmosphere with which 
he is surrounded. A few years later we find him in a com- 
fortable home on his own broad acres and holding offices of 
honor and trust. 
The two cases given illustrate the effect of some of the 
more powerful causes which have been at work. This 
American system, so different from the European, of throw- 
ing wide open the doors of knowledge and bidding, yea, 
urging every one to enter who will; this American way of 

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