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Illustnitcli toitlT .steel ingtuiiiiigs. 







Entered, according to Act of Congress, in tlie year 1803, by 

In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of tlie United States for the Southern 
District of New York. 

1S8 William Strtet, JV. 1'. 


(The Fko.nti9pieok.) 

This is the genial face of a fanner, engaged in a work of love for 
his calling. It is placed here in opposition to the wishes of the 
author. He has been persuaded to allow his face to be seen by 
those who purchase this collection of things useful to a very 
numerous class through the solicitation of the publisher, who 
knows that it will be a satisfaction to them to see how their old 
friend looks at the age of sixty. An old friend he will seem to 
those who read his earnest appeals for agricultural impi'ovement 
twenty or thirty years ago. As a writer and lecturer upon agri- 
culture, and extensive traveler to observe its condition in the United 
States, few men are better knovtrii than the original of this portrait. 
Therefore this likeness will be, the publisher believes, highly appre- 
ciated as well by those who look upon a familiar face as those who 
see it here for the first time. 

The author was born a farmer, and will probably end his days 
where he now lives (a few miles out of the busy hum of the city), 
in the peaceful quiet of his "home in the country," where this 
volume of fiicts for farmers has been prepared as a last legacy of his 
good-will to the brotherhood. 

Like other farmers' sons of New England, he learned to follow 
the plow there, though in early life he became a Western pioneer, and 
while a prairie farmer, became widely known as a writer advocating 
agricultural improvement, and more widely, in 1841, as the origin- 
ator of the National Agricultural Society, and ea'-nest advocate of 
State and County societies. His connection with the New York 
Tribune since 1850 wiU make this picture interesting to all its 
readers. It is for these reasons that the publisher has incurred the 
expense of its production. •• 




"Facts for Farmers?" "What facts?" "What new theories 
have we here in a jionderous volume ? Is it iilled with dry dis- 
sertations about what farmers should or should not do?" "What 
does this author know about farming ?" 

The author answers — the last question first. Nothing. Who 
does? He does not advance new theories. He only collects old 
ones. He has made a ponderous volume, not of dry dissertations, 
but of short, ci-isp facts. The book is full of little things ; glean- 
ings from many fields ; from all the agricultural papers ; from con- 
versations of farmers ; from talks at farmers' clubs ; from books a 
little ; from personal experience much ; — from the memory of a long- 
life devoted to the practice and study of agriculture, this volume is 
born. It is the fruit of years of labor in a great and good field. 
It certainly contains much that will be useful to all classes who 
till the earth, or live in farmers' houses. It should be in every 
rural home, as a work of reference. It is arranged in the most con- 
venient form for this purpose. Each chapter comprises one general 
subject. Each section embraces a separate branch. Each num- 
bered paragraph is complete in itself, and conveys an item of infor- 
mation. Each subject is completely indexed. As a whole, though 
containing much, it is not an encylopedia of agriculture. It does 
not pretend to teach all that a farmer should know. That must be 
learned by daily perusal of agricultural papers and books. 


Tliougli not perfect, farmers will find this book a useful one. If 
not invaluable, I hope it is one that they can not afford to do with- 
out. In its compilation, the author has enjoyed many facilities 
and much experience : he has also labored under many difficulties, 
while daily engaged as an agricultui'al editor of a great daily and 
weekly paper. You will find here stored up for future use many 
of the valuable little items that you have read approvingly in the 
Tribune, and many from other sources, useful to every farmer's 
family, and worthy of preservation. 

Usefulness instead of elegance has been aimed at. I have given 
more facts than theories. I have often given the opinions of several 
upon the same subject, and, as some of these vaiy, I leave the 
reader to adjust differences. 

In trying to avoid diffuseness, I have left much for inference, and 
purposely treated subjects iu such a manner as to induce readers to 
make further research. A word of explanation. At thq end of 
the volume you will find a list of agricultural papers, which the 
author had read for years previous to the commencement of this 
compilation. Also a list of individuals, some of whom are eminent 
authority in agricultural knowledge. From all these he has drawn 
matter, sometimes with, and sometimes without, credit to individ- 
uals, when facts have been condensed from their articles. Con- 
ciseness has been a study ; else, how could twelve hundred subjects 
be crowded into a thousand pages ? Those whose articles I have 
used, must not complain that I have pruned too closely, or failed to 
give credit in all cases where credit is due. I freely acknowledge 
my obligations to all. 

This book is one that may be opened at any page, profitably, 
to occupy five minutes' leisure. It is printed in such large, clear 
type that it can be easily read. The author and publisher hope that 
it will be. Then it is illustrated as no agricultural book published 
iu America ever has been. Look at the many large, handsome. 


steel engravings ! These alone are worth the cost of the whole 

Farmers ! you ai'o earnestly invited to read, if nothing more, the 
titles and contents of chapters, and their subdivisions of sections. 
If you do that, and find nothing that promises instruction, lay the 
volume aside. If so far it is promising, turn over its pages, glanc- 
ing at the black-letter titles of paragraphs. Of one thing be as- 
sured ; lengthy as the volume appears, it is not made so by extreme 
dilution ; the last chapter is better than any that precedes it. 
Throughout, no subject is lengthily treated ; no subject is treated 
that does not contain something useful to some one ; something that 
you can not always remember, but which you should always have 
at hand, convenient for frequent consultation. 

To those who know the name of the author — and the number is 
large — I hope this book will be a welcome bequest. I hope it 
will be the means througli which that name may live in love and 
honor with your children and children's children around many an 
American hearthstone. 

Of the author's portrait, a word. It is the publisher, and not the 
author, who inserts it. It represents him correctly, as he is at the 
age of nearly sixty. 

In conclusion, I earnestly hope these Facts will be an acceptable 
offering to a very large number of those whose prosperity I would 
promote, for I am one of the Buotheriiood of American Farmers. 
To them it is commended, with the love and respect of their old 


New York, May 1, 1863. 

















Sec. II.— swine 

Tliis section embraces facts about the best breeds, and best mode of feeding, gross and 
net weight, etc. 
Sec. III. — COWS : What is a good cow, and how to choose one; food necessary; health; 

Sec. IV. —BEEVES : Eeeord of the largest known, and their weights 


Sec. VI.— FEEDING CATTLE AND CARE OF FARM STOCK : Selecting calves ; shelter ; 

training ; kindness ; value of kinds of feed ; use of salt ; watering ; diseases of cattle. . . . 

Sec. VII.— sheep HUSBANDRY : Breeds of sheep ; care and management ; weight of hay 

Sec. VIII.— HORSES AND MULES : History of the horse ; varieties ; how to use ; proper 
tize ; color ; diseases ; treatment of colts ; how to shoe horses ; breeding horses and 

Sec. IX. — POULTRY ; Full description of all kinds of poultry, and proper treatment 



Sec. X. — BEES : Their history, use, and value, management, and reasons for keeping 

Sec. XL— BIRDS : Reasons for preserving ; their food ; and laws for protecting 

Sec. XII. — ENTOMOLOGICAL : Wliat are insect.^, and what kinds mfest and injure various 
crops, and how to detect friends from foes, and various remedies 

Sec. Xin.— wild AND TAME ANIMALS OF THE FARM : Dogs, cats, rats, mice, moles, 
rabbits, squirrels, gophers, skunks, toads, goats, camels, and breeding fish for family use . 




Sec. XIV.— farm-houses : They should be convenient, roomy, light, ventilated ; their in- 



Sec. XV.— cellars, CHIMNEYS, AND ICE-HOUSES ; How to Imihl them, and their 

Sec. XVI.— the BAKN AND ITS Al'PURTENANCES : Location, size, and use of barns ; 

Sec. XVII.— WA'IT.R FOR THE KAKMERY : Cisterns, size, cost, and how to build ; ,ique- 

ducts and wells, how to construct ; hydraulic rams 308 



Sej. XIX.- ECONOMICU. FARM RUILDINGS : Balloon frames, concrete walls, and other 

cheap styles of building ; how to make balloon frames, and their cost 32-5 

Sec. XX.— ROOFS AND ROOFING : Paints and whitew.i.«h for farm buildings ; nails ; mor- 

tar ; farm gates ; sawed shingles, their value, and hciw to preserve shingles 332 

Stc. XXI. -LIGHTNING CONDUCTORS: Protection of farm buildings from fire ; windroills 

and their use "... 842 



Sec. XXII.— the FOOD QUESTION: Quantity, quality, variety, adaptation, adulteration. 

changes produced hy cooking, water for cooking, and effect on health 3-')l 

Pec. XXIII -^THE BRE,\.D QUESTION : Varieties ; quality ; how to make bread and yeast, 

Sec. XXIV.— SUBSTITUTES FOR BREAD, in green corn, dried corn, pop-corn, hominy, and 


lights; use of tea, coffee, and sugar; preserving fruits, pork, hams, and beef; remedies 

Sec XXVI.- DOME?!TIC WINES, CIDER, AND PRESERVES : Rules of wine-making 

from various fruits, and cider and vinegar making 419 

Sec. XXVII.— HYGIENIC : Prep.aratiiin of food for the sick ; remedies for poisons, bites, 

Sec. XXVIII.— ITIE DAIRY : Butter and cheese making ; how much milk for a pound of 


THE gaehen and its fkuits. 

Skc. XXIX. -pleasure and PROFIT OF GARDENING : Origin and history of veg- 

Sec. XXX.— GARDEN CULINARY VEGETABLES: Protection from insects; value of va- 

rious things for food ; chiccory culture ; what should be grown in the garden ; number of 

Skc. XXXI. —THE IXOWEK GARDEN: Varieties and cultivation of flowers ; suitable soil 

and pi eparatifin ; lists of choice flowers ; flowers grown as a crop ^>00 




Sec. XXXII. — LAWNS : How to make and how to keep them ; trees and plant.s suitable for 

Sec. XXXni.— HOT-BEDS : Cold frames plant protectors ; how to make and use hot-beds . 62i 
Sec. XXXIV.— small FRUITS OF THE GARDEN : Currants, varieties and cultivation ; 
strawberries, variety and growth ; raspberries ; blackberries ; quinces 030 



Sec. XXXV.— propagation, PLANTING, AND CULTIVATION OF TREES : Time to 


to prune ; how and when to bud and graft ; how to make wax 570 

Sec. XXXVII.— APPLE AND PEACH TREES: Their general management; select list of 

apples, and descriptions ; peach-trees, how to grow ; how to treat an old orchard 579 

Sec. XXXVIII. — CHERRIES : Best varieties ; soil, situation, and cultivation ; history, use. 

Sec XXXIX.— PEARS : Soil, situation, cultivation, and varieties ; select list of sorts; when 

to gather and how to ripen ; is the cultivation profitable 601 


How to transplant fruit ; choice selection of plums 012 

crop ; how to grow them ; best varieties ; cider-making 021 



Sec XLH.— HOW TO PLANT AND CULTIVATE VINES : What sorts to plant ; history of 

varieties ; profits of culture ; grape-growing in California 030 

Sec. XLIII. - CULTURE OF GRAPES FOR WINE : Rules for wine-making ; wine from 
various kinds of grapes ; rules of a French wine-maker ; rules of American wine-makers 657 


C E R E A I, I A . 

Sec. XLIV.— wheat, RYE, OATS, BARLEY, MILLET, BUCKWHEAT : Preparation of 
soil and fertilization ; quantity of aeed ; harvesting, stacking, and storing ; thrashing and 
cleaning ; profits of wheat culture ; oats, how and when to sow ; cultivation of barley ; 
buckwheat ; millet 067 

Sec. XLV. — INDIAN CORN: Its history; product; profit as a crop; when to plant, and 
how to cultivate ; great yield per acre. North and South ; how to store corn, and how to 





Seo. XLVI.— mowing and pasture lands : Seeding land ; varieties of grass ; what 
is grass ; what kinds arc rgcommcuded for culUvation ; clover, its cultivation ; harvc-st- 

ing seed 

Sec. XLVIL— haying AND HAYING JLVCHINES : Hay caps ; stacking ; how much hay 
land should produce, and how much it is necessary to provide ; how to measure hay in 



plant and cultivate, and how much thuy should produce ; Iiistory of the potato ; charac- 
ter of varieties ; importance of the crop ; what seed should be used, and how planted ; 
suhstitutL'S for the potato ; sweet potato culture ; turnip culture ; carrots as a crop, and 
sowing and cultivation ; onions as a crop, how grown, and profits 78j 

time of planting cano; soil and situation; harvesting; manufacturing, and yield and 
profits as a crop ^"'-- 

Sec. L.— MAPLE-SUG^VR M^VKING : Tapping trees ; spouts, buckets, and boilers ; process of 
manufactuj'c ; cost, yield, aud profit of maple-sugar 8C5 



Sec. LI.— trees AND TREE PLANTING ; WOOD OR COAL FOR FUEL : What trees to 
phrnt, and how and where ; descriptive list of trees; value of various trees ; how to make 
timber durable ; how to season fuel 845 

Sec. LII. — FENCES : Their cost ; kinds most economical ; laws regulating ; how to make 
hedges, stone walls, wire fence, and farm gates ; how to kyauize fence posts ; waste of land 
aiound fences ; portable fence, its use 801 



MANURES AND FERTILIZING FARM CROPS : Color, fineness, and moisture of ma- 
nure affects its value ; nitrates, muriates, sulphates, lime, plaster, and bones, how to 
apply ; guano, its history and use ; muck, its value ; sea-weed and other matters ; value 
of salt ; special manures for various crops ; soiling to save manure ; manuring with 
clover ; water, its value as a fertilizer 877 





Sec. LIV.— irrigation AND TILE DRAINING : Value of irrigation ; its practice in Italy 
and otlier countries ; what lands are most benefited ; tile draining, its importance, cost, 
practice, and pi-ofit ; how and what land should be drained ; the mole-draining plow. . . . 904 

Sec. LV.— plows AND PLOWING : History of cast-iron plows ; subsoil plows, and their 
use and value ; steel plows and steam plows ; other farming tools ; labor saved by using 
farm machinery , 917 



cotton gin ; upland cotton ; sea island cotton ; how cotton is grown, picked, and pre- 
pared for market ; profit of the culture ; flax cotton 928 

Sec LVn.— sugar cane CULTIVATION: Statistics of its culture in Louisiana ; yield of 
sugar per acre ; cost of making, and how it is made 943 

Sec. LVllI. — RICE : Its cultivation, production, and preparation for market ; yield per acre ; 
value and profit ; statistics of rice plantations ; upland rice 948 

Sec LIX. — ^TOBACCO : Its history, cultivation, production, and profits ; exports and con- 
sumption of tobacco ; eifect of cultivation upon the soil ; its culture in New York and 
Connecticut ; rules for cultivation, curing, and packing 953 

soil and climate ; how it is sown, harvested, and yield per acre ; cost and profit ; effect 
upon the soil ; flax cultivation ; how to prepare the soil, sow the seed, and quantity per 
acre 965 



last chapter embraces many things not classed under other titles, such as temperature for 
seeds to germinate and grow ; nutriment in food substances ; weights and measure of 
grain ; measuring land ; proverbs and maxims for young and old farmers, farmers' wives 
and children ; maxims of health ; things to be thought about ; how to dress skins, fix 
pumps, mend pipes, and prognosticate the weather ; farmers' clubs ; farm laborers ; farm 
accounts ; farm economy, and finis 971-1010 


Plait. I. — Likeness of the Author - Frontispiece. 

Platk II.— Frontispiece of Chap. I. , illustratrating the subject of Domestic Animals Page Vi 

Plate in. — Frontispiece of Sec. III. This Plate Is intended to answer the question, " What 

is a ETOod Cow ?" It also exhibits different breeds of Cattle 31 

Platk IV. — Different Breeds of Cattle — Durham, Devon, Hereford, .\yrs!iire, Dutcli, and AI- 

demey Bulls and Cows H 

Plate V. — The Milk Jlirror, showing how to select a good Cow, and form of Teetli at dif- 
ferent Ages 48 

Plate VI. — Breeds of Sheep and Swine 81 and 10 

1'i.ATi; VII. — Frontispiece of Sec. VIII. — Portraits of celebrated Horses, and Illustrations of 

different Breeds 07 

Pirates VIII. and IX. — Illustrations of the Teeth of Horses at all Ages, showing how to 

judge the Age from One to Eighteen Years lOG 

Plate X. — Frontispiece to Poultry, Sec. IX 123 

Plate XI. — Turlteys, Ducks, Oeese, Swans, and Pea Fowls 140 

Plate XII. The Bee-Keeper at his Work 15" 

Plate XIII. — ^Tlic Farmery of Fanner Snug and Farmer Slack— Frontispiece of Chap. III. . 275 

Platk XIV.^Frontispiece of the Garden and its Fruits, Chap. V 461 

Plate XV. — Frontispiece to the Flower Garden, Sec. XXXI 500 

Plate X.V1. — Frontispiece to the Orcliard, Cluap. VL — A Dessert fit for a Fiirmer — .V Rural 

Scene and rich collection of Fruit 555 

Pl.\te XVII. — Frontispiece to Chap. VIII.— Ccrealia, representing Insects injurious to Wheat ; 

also Grapevine Pests 007 

Plate XVIII. — Frontispiece to Sec. XLV. — Illustrations of Insects wliicli are injurious to 

Farmers, and others which are l>cncficial 709 

Plate XIX. — Frontispiece to Chap. IX. — The Grasses 748 

Plate XX. — Frontispiece to Chup. XIV. — The Cotton Plant and Cotton Field- Gathering 

the Crop 928 

Plate XXI.— Insects injurious to Cotton and Corn 912 

Plate XXII. — Frontispiece of Sec. LIX. — Tobacco in all stages of Growth .and Curing for 

Market 953 


(Page 13.) 

Every American farmer will look upon this picture with pride. 
It is a fitting illusti'ation of a chapter upon Domestic Animals. It 
contains representatives of a well-stocked farm, assembled in the 
farm-yard on the south side of one of the farmery buildings in one 
of the sunny days of spring, which are so well calculated to make 
such a collection of well-fed animals feel, as these look, full of 
gladness. There is no danger that such liogs as these will destroy 
young lambs and poultry. Here we sec the sheep and lambs, goats 
and kids — goats that yield valuable fleeces, which are described in 
this chapter — the work-horses and brood-mare and colt — the mules 
and their progenitor, who is in an attitude of war Avith a well-fed 
heifer that is absorbed in admiration of the peacocks on the roof 
of the poultry-house. How surlily the bull looks upon the white- 
faced cow, which is deeply interested in contemplating the two hens 
that the cock has just called to enjoy a few grains of corn ! By tlie 
earnest looking of one cow and two horses, we judge that they see 
their good friend and master approaching. Geese, ducks, turkeys, 
rabbits, and pigeons, and a boat on the water, enhven the scene, 
which, altogether, is one of tranquil beauty. It is a scene to con- 
template and admire. It teaches a lesson. ' It will stimulate many 
a young man to a determination to become the owner of such a' one, 
or something equally worthy of the artist who desires to represent 
American farm life. It will stimulate all, we hope, who look upon 
this pictorial index of this chapter to read it carefully. 





HE very foundation of all farm improvement is the 

domestic animals which consume the coarse products 

of the farm, such as are not fit for human food, or 

grown ill greater abundance than is needed for 

that purpose, which, being so fed, are converted 

into milk, butter, cheese, beef, pork, mutton, wool, 

leather, and the many other valuable animal products. 

But above all are animals valuable to the farmer, because 

they convert the coarse products of the farm into manure, 

without which the owner can not produce food for his own 


Viewing, then, as I do, successful farming as based upon 
stock, it seems to me very fitting that I should make the 
treatise of it the leading chapter of the volume. And as swine are more 
univereally kept by all classes of Americans, and the flesh more universally 
used every week in the year, it will be very proper to make this branch 
of farm-stock the leading subject. 

I am not going to give learned dissertations upon stock-breeding, nor, in 
fact, long essays upon this or any other subject, but such little fugitive facts 
as come to hand, in short paragraphs, consecutively numbered for reference, 
with black-letter titles to each subject, to attract attention, and so arranged 
that facts may be gathered at a glance, and valuable information obtained 
during leisure moments which might otherwise be lost. 

Many of the statements given are not only for the purpose of giving 
interesting information — such, for instance, as the weights of the largest 
animals ever slaughtered — but as an incentive to others to try to produce 
the like. It is not to be expected that a man who never saw a bullock of 
over 12 cwt. should attempt to make one of 36 cwt. ; nor will lie be likely 
to make the attempt before he learns the important fact, that the particular 
breed which he has kept all his life never attain tliat weight. 

It is for the purpose of inciting improvement that I give some statistics 

Li brary 
^N' estate College 


of the New York livestock market, which I have been familiar with for 
many years. Farmers slioiild knuw that there is a certain market for all 
the meat-giving animals they can produce, and what they realize, as well as 
what varieties sell best. 

I have purposely adopted a dcsnltory method, because I tliiuk it will be 
more satisfactory to my readers, whom I do not expect to read the work in 
consecutive order, and because I find it more convenient to pick up the 
fugitive facts and jot them down in a sort of mosaic-work, something as 
nature does its autumn tints, which are now glowing before my window in 
the full eifulgence of an October sun. 

And here, too, as I look abroad upon my neighbors' fields, and at their 
cattle gnawing the short pasture, and running after every chance apple 
dropping from the trees, and then stretcliing up their necks, looking for 
more, and browsing off the lower limbs of tlic trees, I am forcibly reminded 
that this is not a profitable method of keeping larm-stock. Day by day the 
milch cows fail to give the supply that good pasture will always give in this 
good butter-making month of October ; and day by day the flesh of all the 
animals is wasting, so that, by-and-by, when the cold and storms of November 
force their owner to bring them into winter quarters, they are not in such 
a condition that he may carry thcui economically through. There is a great 
error in farming, that the scene before me forcibly reminds me of — it is the 
error of keeping any kind of iarm-stoek upon short pasture, and most 
jjarticularly in autumn, so that they come to winter quarters falling off in 
flesh, rather than gaining, which is tlio condition tliat all animals should be 
in when brought from the pasture to the stable or feeding lot. 

Some of the farmers of the Eastern States of the kind just alluded to, 
who keep their stock upon the shortest possible pasture, and consequently 
generally have scrubby animals, and always meet with great difficulty in 
wintering those, would learn a useful lesson if they would visit the blue- 
grass pastures of Kentucky, and see in what luxuriant feed the sleek 
Durhams of that region are kept. They would there learn one of the 
secrets of value of that breed, and why they attain at three years old a size 
and weight of beef never equaled at six years old by tlie scrub breed 
common in Virginia and in the liilly regions of Oliio and Indiana, which are 
sometimes designated in the New York market as " pony cattle," or " old 
stjdc," and averaging, when fat, about six hundred pounds in the beef. A 
similar scrub breed is known in Kentucky as " mountain cattle,'' and the same 
style is very common in North Carolina, Georgia, and other Southern States, 
wlicrc I liave often seen full grown steers, and fat, killed ibr beef at four 
years old, that would not average four liundred pounds of beef. These 
cattle were treated, too, all their lives, just like too many of the same class 
in all the New England and Middle States — like those now before me, eking 
out their existence upon the scanty herbage of autumn, in a closely-cropped 
summer pasture, and never fed with forage prepared for winter, until the 
owner is driven to it by an early winter storm. 


Such is not the right way to keep stock ; but so long as men will keep it 
thus, it is not of much advantage to try to improve the breed. 

Tliere is a great want of information, not only upon the subject of 
improvements in the kinds of stock, but in the modes of keej^ing it. It is 
not my intention, in this chapter upon domestic animals, to attempt to give 
all this information, but only a few brief hints, which may lead to reflection 
and improvement. 

Above all things that will tend to improvement, are annual visits to great 
cattle-shows, where the varieties in the bi'eeds of cattle may be studied, and 
judged as to which -would be the most profitable, or whether either would 
be more so than the old-style breed at home. 

It would be of great importance, too, to all farmers to travel more. How 
strange it would seem, at first sight, to a Yankee farmer, who had occupied 
a forty-acre farm all his life, to see a thousand hogs, and half as many 
bullocks, all turned into a grand-prairie corn-field, of a size large enough to 
cover his entire farm and that of twenty or thirty of his ueighboi-s! His 
first exclamation would probably be, " Oh, what a waste !"• His subsequent 
opinion would be about like this : " "Well, after all, I begin to believe that 
is not so bad a way of harvesting corn as I thought it was." 

And this is not the only curious thing that he might see in relation to 
farm-stock in traveling through the West. He would see the same bad 
management as at home, about bringing the stock into winter quarters, for 
they are too often allowed to run in a corn-field, after the grain has all been 
harvested, living upon the dry stalks until after tlie first snows of winter. 
He might also see some very amusing, as well as instructive things, in 
connection with cattle. 

Shipping cattle o?i a Mississippi stcamhoat, as I once witnessed, afibrded 
infinite amusement; and I am disposed to giv^e a photograph of it, before I 
take up the more practical details of farm-stock. 

Engagements for boats to stop and take cattle on board at various 
landings are frequently made before leaving port, and it often happens that 
the boat reaches these points in the night ; and tlien a scene occurs which 
might employ a more graphic pen than mine to describe, or which would 
have been a fit subject for Hogarth to paint. 

I will try to give my readers some idea of such a scene, although one so 
common on the Mississippi it rarely meets a passing notice ; yet it is full 
of interest. 

The steamer left St. Louis about sundown of a dark day, during the latter 
part of which the rain came down in torrents, corresponding to tlie size of 
the great river they were destined to fill. Of course mud was a component 
part of all the little tributary streams ; but it did not discolor the great 
river — that is always muddy. 

At ten o'clock we saw a light on the right bank, and run in for it. 
Tliougli the rain had ceased, the night was dark — one which gave tlie pilot 
but little chance to see any but the most prominent landmarks. 


"Whose place is this?" sung out tlie captain, wlien he had approached as 
near the light as lie thought safe — for in time of "a fresh," the master of a 
boat always approaches shore with great care. 

" Why, dis is my massa's place ; what boat dat ? If you is de Heniy 
Clay, den dis nigger mighty glad, 'cause, gorra, cap'en, hab been watching 
all dis two free nights for de old Clay." 

" Have you got your cattle there ?" 

"All in do lot— gorra brcss you, den you is de Henry Clay, sure — right 
here by do light." 

" Is the water good in shore ?" 

" Why, spec him is good for the steamboat, but not very good to drink." 

" IIow deep is it near the bank ?" 

" Oil, Lord, massa, dat mor'n dis nigger knows for sartin, 'cause him 
mighty deep." 

"That will do. Forward there. Get your lines ready. Light them 
torches — let's see where we are. Call all hands ; hero is a hundred head of 
cattle to be got aboard." 

In a few minutes the lights flashed a bright glare over the boat and 
shore, bringing to view a scene worth a long journey to behold. The 
torches are composed of " light wood," which is the concentrated pitch of 
old pine trees, of the long-leaf variety — the richest of all the family in 
turpentine. This wood is split in small pieces and put in an iron frame, 
with a staft" not unlike the common hod used to carry mortar, so it can be 
carried about or stuck in the ground, where by a little replenishing it will 
burn for hours, giving a light unequaled by any other portable contiivance 
I ever saw. In the present case, it disclosed more mud than anything else. 
The whole bank was alluvial claj' loam. The face was steep, and sixty or 
eighty feet high. The boat, made fast to stakes driven into the soft earth, 
lay within twenty feet of the shore, between which and the guards was a 
gangway made of long planks lashed together, about six or eiglit feet wide, 
without side-railing, or anything to prevent springing down in the center. 
The cattle were in a yard on the top of the bank, where, around the watch- 
lire, huddled about a dozen sleeiiy negroes, amongst which the anxious 
face of massa soon made its appeiirance, having been awakened at his house, 
two miles distant, by the tremendous noise wliicli is made by one of these 
river steamers, by the pulls of her high-pressure engine. 

" Ilalloo, Captain Smith, is that you ? I might have known it, though, for 
no other fool would come hero in the night for such a job as this. What 
are you going to do — hold on till morning T' 

"Hold the !" 

"Well, I might just as well as hold you. I do believe, if the Clay's 
engine should break going up stream, the boat would not stop — there is 
steam enough in the captain to keep her going." 

Evidently pleased with this compliment, he jumped ashore, with that 
most encouraging of all words, " Come, boys," and floundered up the muddy 


road, to greet his planter friend with one of those hearty shakos of the hand 
which alone is equal to a whole volume on the man's character. 

"Well, captain, you see how it is. I am all ready ; the cattle are here, 
wet, wild, and muddy, and the bank awful. I couldn't help it. It would 
I'aiu, and the river is on the fall. I doubt whether your men can stand on 
the slippery bank. My boys will take down some of the gentle ones, but 
Lord help you M'ith two or three ; we had to bring them in with the dogs." 

" So much the better, then, tliat the road is wet — they will slide tlie easier. 
Hopes and men will bring them down ; don't you fret, colonel." 

" Well, well, I'll leave it to you ; I'll risk the cattle, if you will your neeks. 
Better wait for daylight, thougii — what say?" 

" Never ! what should I do with that surplus steam you say I carry ? Wait 
— no ; I intend to have them all aboard, and win half of them playing poker 
with you before morning; and at daylight 1 am going to take in Tom 
Kilgc'-e's, at Rocky Landing. So bear a hand, boys. Stir up your lights, 
and rouse 'em out, one at a time, and often." 

In a few minutes tliere was a line of men and bullocks from the top of the 
bank to the boat. The first dozen or two came down very orderly to the 
end of the gangway, where, if they hesitated, a rope was tlirown over so as 
to encircle them behind, and two or three stout fellows at each end gave 
them material aid about coming on board. Tiie owner said Ave should see 
fun directly, but not caring to participate in it personally, he took care to 
make himself one of the spectators, in a safe, comlbrtable position on board 
the boat. Upward of half were brought down without giving us a taste of 
the promised amusement, though the whole scene was exceedingly interesting. 

At length they got hold of one of the animals, which the colonel said was 
wilder than forty deer, and vicious as an old buck in running time ; and then 
there was fun. lie was a great, long-legged, five-year-old steer, of the mouse 
color, long taper-horned Spanisli cattle, who had never before felt the weiglit 
and strength of a man's hand upon his heretofore unrestrained wild-woods 
liberty. Round and round the yard he went, carrying or dragging through 
the mud as many negroes, sailors, and firemen as could find horn, car, nose, 
or tail to hold to. Finally they got a rope round his horns and drew liini up to 
a stake at the edge of the bank, to wait till others were caught to lead down 
first, thitdving that he would better follow than take the front rank. He did 
follow. When about a dozen or fifteen head were on the way down, the 
wild one was cast off from his moorings and led np to the edge of the bauk„ 
wlien just at that moment the engineer blowed off steam, at wliich the 
frightened animal leaped forward on to the slippery path, Inst his foothold, 
and down be went against the ne.xt, and the next, and so on ; like a row of 
bricks, one tumbled or slid against another, upsetting men and beast, till the 
whole came down like an avalanche upon the end of the platform with such 
force that the strain upon the mooring line of the bow drew out the stake, 
when the strong current almost instantly swung her off shore so far, before 
the men could get hold of the line and make fast again, that the platform 


dropped off into the water, and with it eight or ten men and steei-s, among 
which was the one that caused all the mischief. I must say the fun was not 
80 great as the fright, for a minute, as it did not take much longer to finish 
off the greatest feat of " slidhig down hill" which I have witnessed since 
tlie halcyon days of hand-sleds and boyhood upon the snow-clad, wintry hills 
of my native land. Tiiat all were got out safe was owing to the instant 
thought and action of the mate, who sprang ashore with a polo which he 
placed in the wheel, so as to prevent the cattle from floating down past the 
stern, where it would have been impossible for them to get up the soft, 
tilijjliery bank. As it was, some of them were in the water over an hour; 
the catamount, as the colonel called him, being purposely left until the last, 
and severely threatened with being towed to New Orleans. But when he 
was at length taken out, tliere was not a more docile animal in the herd ; he 
had been completely subdued. The whole affair, though fraught with danger 
at first, afforded all hands a scene of most uproarious mirth. Even at the 
time when it looked as though half a score of men might be killed in the 
grand tumble, it was almost impossible to avoid laughing, the whole thing 
was so extremely ludicrous. 

One big negro fellow, finding himself hard pressed b}' tlie bullock he was 
leading and half a dozen more behind him, either for sport or to save his 
shins, jumped upon the animal's back and came down witli a surge into the 
water ; but he never let go till he had him safe ashore again, where he met 
some of the most hearty, though rude congratulations of his companions, for 
his skillful feat of horsenuinship on an ox. 

Finally, in spite of mud and peril, the grand entertainment of shipping 
cattle on the Mississippi was concluded, and the boat was ofl' before daylight 
for the next landing, where the operation was to be repeated. Owing to 
better ground and a difterent plan adopted, this was not quite so entertaining. 
The cattle were yarded in a lo:ig, narrow pen, M'hich came near the shore. 
A rope being passed over the horns of the forwartl steer, with the other end 
through a snatch-block on the boat, a dozen or fifteen men would lay hold 
of it, while two men by the tail to steer, and one on each side to keep him 
on the gangway, would have the fellow out of the pen and eliding up the 
planks before he knew what he was bellowing for. 

As in all cases where science and skill direct human efforts, the labor 
was lessened and business expedited. 

And so in all cases where science and skill are exercised in regard to all 
kinds of domestic animals, success may be looked for. 

And now, after this little incidental digression from the main intent of 
this chapter, in the exhibition of a life-like scene on the Mississippi, we will 
begin to arrange our facts in order and shape for useful reference, always 
aiming more at the practical than ornamental. 

As we shall arrange each subject under its separate and proper head, we 
will begin the chapter upon domestic animals with that kind in most universal 

Sec. 2.] 




eeding Pigs and Faiting Pork. — Next to procuring 
a good breed of swine — that is, a breed suitable 
to the purposes for which it is required — the 
best way to feed the stock liogs, and the cheapest and 
best way to fatten them, is the most important master 
for a farmer to consider. No man can say, " My breed 
is the best of all," unless he specifies for wliat purpose it 
is best for. A good grazing breed would be best for 
some situations ; quite the contrary for some others. Tiie 
Berkshire, Essex, and Suffolk have each been denomi- 
nated " the gentleman's jjig," because well fitted for 
keeping up in close pens, one or two to a family ; while a 
much larger breed is required bj'' the great corn-growere 
of the "West. And this brings us to the next most 
important question. 
3. Corn and Pork— Uow much Pork will a Bnsliel of torn make?— This 
is one of the most important questions that can be asked by every man 
who raises a bushel of corn or feeds one to a liog. Yet it is a question that 
not one in ten can answer. To see the ignorance of mankind upon subjects 
of most importance to them, makes us ready to exclaim, Does anybody know 
anything about anything? In conversation with many farmers, we have 
not yet found a man who could say how much corn it i-equired to make a 
hundred pounds of pork, and consequently could not fix upon any relative 
price of one or the other, at which it would be profitable to feed corn to 
hogs. In some experiments made by Henry L. Ellsworth, at Lafayette, Ind., 
in warm weather, with thrifty young porkers in a pen, fed with corn in the 
ear, if we remember aright, he gained 12 lbs. of pork per bushel of corn. 
Samuel II. Clay, of Kentucky, gained 17^ lbs. per bushel, feeding the corn 
in the form of cooked meal. As a general thing, we should like to know 
if corn, fed as it usually is in the "West, averages six pounds of pork to the 
bushel of shelled corn. 

We have received several answers to this question, but they only proxi- 
mately settle the point. Leroy Buckingham, of Cadiz, Cattaraugus Co., 
N. Y., says, a pig that weighed 52 lbs. when commenced with, fed on the 
spare milk from one cow and 800 lbs. of raw coin-meal, weighed 364 lbs. (live 
or dead not stated) when killed at seven and a half months old. He thinks 
each bushel of corn made about 20 lbs. of pork. 

The two following letters we print entire, and commend them to the careful 
attention of all farmers, although they do not contain all that is necessary to 
be known upon the subject : 


"Glenn's Falls, N. Y., Oct. 23, 1858. 

"Sir: You think it important that farmers should know how much pork a 
harrol of corn will make. It is an important question, and I am sorry to say 
I think there are ten lawyei's and mechanics to one farmer that can answer 
the (question correctly. I once made a very accurate exj^eriment in Kew 
York; the first day of September I weighed into the pen two hogs, a year 
and a lialf old, and three pigs, six months old. I measured old corn 
accurately, and had it ground. At night I wet with boiling water (to a 
consistency that would run freely) meal sufficient for the next day's feed. 
The hogs had no slo])s from the house — nothing but the meal and water. I 
killed them the first of December, deducted five cents per pound for what 
they weighed the fii-st of September, and found, at six cents per pound for 
the pork, they had paid ninety-eight cents per bushel for the eoni, which 
would give about sixteen and one third pounds of j)()rk to the bushel. One 
year gincc I fatted fifteen old liogs and tliirty five pigs on India wheat ai;d 
potatoes. I measured the feed accurately, steamed the potatoes, and mixed 
the meal in while hot, twelve hours before feeding. At five cents per ]>oi:i,d 
for the ]>ork, they paid firty-two cents per bushel for the India wheal, and 
fifteen cents for the potatoes. Of course the relative value of the wheat and 
potatoes is guessed at in that experiment. I "worked" tlie hogs in ihe 
manure business, carting in muck, weeds, etc. I got 15 cords of manure 
although less pork' — I suppose for the working the hogs. I would like much 
to know if any one (especially in the Western States) has made tlic exj>eri- 
ment of turning hogs into the corn-field, with free access to watei', and let 
them help themselves. 

"If any otiier class of business 7ncn knew as few facts in rcgai'd to their 
business as farmers do, they would all fail every year. New Mausu." 

A. G. Perry, of Newark (State not named), weighed a thrifty pig, five 
nionlhs old, 15011)s., and then fed it 50 lbs. corn meal, mixed with hot water, 
thin enough to answer ibr victuals and driidv. This was eaten in six and 
a half days, and the gain was 18 lbs. 

A correspoiulent writes from Norlh Cliatham, Columbia Co., N. Y. : 
"Tlie 2-ith of August I put up a sow to fatten — a large proportion Suffolk 
— lier weight, 235 lbs. Price on foot, 4 cents per pound. For food from 
August 24th to October 4th, gave her 309 lbs. rye bran. Rye bran is Avorlh 
here $1 12| per 100 lbs. October 4th her weight was 295 lbs., making CO 
lbs. increase from the bran. From October 4th until November 17th I fed 
her 10 bushels, by weight 560 lbs., of marketable corn. Killed her Nov. 
17tli. Her live weight, just before killing, was 413 His. Increase from the 
10 bushels corn (or 5(50 lbs.), being 118 lbs. pork — it taking a fraction more 
than A\ lbs. corn for 1 11). pork — and is a fraction less than 12 lbs. ]>ork fi-om 
1 bushel of corn, making the increase per day a little less than 23 lbs. The 
present ])rice of corn here is 70 cents jier busliel, and the pork 7 cents 
per pound, being barely a paying business." 

Ssa 2.] 



J. J. Carter, of Ilornville, Chester Co., Pa., says that B. P. Kirk kept a 
debt and credit account with his pig. He fed 49^'j bushels of corn, at GO 
cents a bushel, and added the tirst cost of the pig, at two months old, $5, 
making a total of $31 46. At 17 months old the animal weighed 649 lbs., 
and sold for 71 cents a pound, making §18 67, giving a profit of $11 21. A 
little bran was fed, but that was reduced to the equivalent of corn, and 
coimted as above. The breed of hogs common in Chester County is one of 
the best in the world. The hogs arc of a white color, medium-sized, easily 
tatted to weigh 300 to 100 lbs. at 10 to 15 months old, and have small 
bones, fine-grained flesh, large hams, well marbled, and large leaves of 
kidney fat. It is a distinct American breed, and one of the best for farmers 
who desire to graze their hogs in part, and then fatten them easil}^ upon 
honsa-slops, apples, potatoes, and coarse grain. Even for large fnrmers, and 
for making pork upon a large scale, there are not many, if any, breeds of 
swine iu this country superior to that known as "Westchester, or Chester County 
(Pa.) hogs. And as I consider it an important fact that farmers should 
know where to get a real good breed without paying fancy i^rices, I am glad 
of the ojiportunity to make this breed better known. 

D. C. Nye, of Lexington, Mass., iu reply to an inquirer in the Genesee 
Farmer^ writes that — 

"The Chester County hogs are distinguished for their early maturity, 
great facility for fattening, and are very quiet and docile. They are well 
covered with bristles, and, unlike the Suft'olks, can endure the heat and cold. 
The Chesters will jirobably make as much pork (and of a sujierior quality) 
on a given amount of food as any other breed — some of them, when well 
fed, having attained the weight of six or seven hundred pounds." 

Another correspondent of the same pajier says, in addition, that the 
thorough-bred Chester hogs are always white, and that "they are peculiar in 
being fit for slaughtering at any time." 

But to proceed with the subject of feeding hogs. The second letter is 
very much to the point. It says : 

*' In answer to your question, ' How much pork will a bushel of corn 
make?' I send you the result of two experiments, made some years ago, 
while occupying a farm in the northern part of Chester County, Pa. 

" My first experiment was with five very ordinary pigs that I bought of a 
neighbor; weighed, October, 1851, 219 lbs ; fed on corn and cob meal, boiled 
into mush, of which they consumed in 30 days 279 lbs., and gained 87 lbs. 
live weight 

"In the next 32 days tliey consumed 375|lbs., and gained 75 lbs. live 
weight, making a gain of 157 lbs. in 62 days, having consumed 651| lbs. of 
corn and cob meal, which is equal to about 9i bushels pure meal; or one 
bushel pure meal cooked made 16.8 lbs. live weight. 

"My second experiment was with a lot of five very superior pigs, of the 
Chester breed; they weighed, Feb. 7, 1S53, COoIbs; consumed in 9 days 


252 lbs. corn and cob meal, scalded, and gained 78 lbs. In the next £ 
days they consumed 1:^5 lbs. whole corn, boiled, and 128 lbs. of corn-cob 
meal, scalded, and gained 57 lbs. 

"In the next t) days they consnmed 278 lbs. corn-cob meal, scalded, and 
gaisied 70 lbs., making a gain in 27 days of 205 lbs. on a consumption 
of C5Slbs. corn-cob meal, and 125 lbs. wliole corn. Assuming that 70 lbs. 
of the cob-mcal contains 5G lbs., or one bushel jinre meal, ■we have 9| 
busliels of pure meal and 2} bushels whole corn, making a consumption of 
11 J bushels nearly, and a gain of 205 lbs. flesh; or 5Glbs. of pure meal, 
scalded, made 17.41 lbs. of live weight. 

"The above surprising gain for food consumed was the result of very 
careful feeding, clean and warm bedding, and a tight house. 

" RicHAKD TuATCHEE, Darby, Pa." 

Thomas Iloag, of Somhanock, N. Y., lias sent us a detailed statement of 
the feeding of ten pigs, out of a litter of twelve from a native-breed yearling 
sow, taken from her at seven weeks old, and fed till slaughtered, at forty 
weeks old, with the following substances, with estimates of expense added : 

Pasture $3 00 

Wood used in boiling food 2 00 

Extras 2 CO 

Value of pigs at seven weeks old 80 00 

2121 bushels of com, at 75 cents $1.59 38 

G;! bushels of oats, at 45 cents 28 35 

r^iiil for crrinding 14 79 

1:! busliels of small potatoes, 12i cents. 1 63 

(i loads of pumpkins, at $1 6 00 

20a lbs. of carrots 1 00 Total $2-18 15 

These hogs weighed, dressed, 4,066 pounds, and sold, 

(in 1853), at Lansingburg, N. Y., at $7 50 per cwt $304 95 

Kough fat, 175 lbs •. 17 50 

Total $322 45 

Total cost 248 15 

Balance S74 30 

This is the amount of profit, or, rather, pay for labor, and tli,e spare milk 
of four ordinary cows fed to tlieni, and not estimated as above. 
At six cents a pound the result would have been 

4,000 llw., at G cents $243 90 

Eough fat 17 60 

Total $261 46 

Cost 248 15 

Profit $13 31 

This certainly docs not give a very flattering picture of the probable profits 

of pork-making in this section of the country, where every kind of feed is 

salable at high prices. 

Other letters were subsequently received, from one of which we gather 

the following information : Wm. Renick, of Circleville, Ohio, a large farmer, 

and long engaged in the raising of cattle and hogs, writes more extensively 

than we can tiiul I'oom tor. Mr. Renick thinks that farmers are not ignorant 

of the fact " Imw luiu-h ])ork v»-ill a bushel of corn make," and says: 


" Probably nine tenths of our best practical farmers could, without lie?ita 
tiou, give you an approximate answer in general terms." 

This is exactly what we supposed, and that they would give nothing but 
an approximate answer in general terms, because there is a general lack of 
positive information upon this and many otlier important matters connected 
with the farming interest. Mr. Renick gives the gain upon five liogs fed by 
himself in the common rough method of the West — tliat is, turned into the 
corn-field, 200 head together. Three of these hogs weighed, at seven months 
old, liOlbs. each, and two older ones weighed 125 lbs. each. After feeding 
120 days, the three weighed 280 lbs. net average, and the two 185 lbs. 

" Now, say that hogs on an average will eat 20 bushels of corn per hundred 
head per day for the first 60 days, 16 bushels for the next 30 days, and 12 
bushels per hundred head per day for the last 30 days, and we have 21 
bushels per head for the whole time of 120 days (though this is under rather 
than over the mark), and we have a production in the case of the three hogs 
of 101 lbs. of gross pork for a bushel of corn, and but a small fraction over 
5 lbs. per bushel for the two hogs." 

Now, this is exactly in jiroof of what we originally stated. It is all guess- 
work. Mr. Renick further says : 

"The large feeders of hogs and cattle are oftentimes greatly mistaken in 
their calculations in regard to the quantity of stock their corn will feed, 
sometimes largely overrunning, and again falling largely short of their 

Tills is not to be wondered at, when it is considered that no one pretends 
to have any settled rule of action, but buys as many leau cattle or hogs as 
he guesses he can fatten. Mr. Renick thinks the most common answer to 
the question M"ould be something like this : 

"That hogs fed in the ordinary way will gain from one pound to one and 
a half pounds per day, and tliey will consume some twenty bushels or more of 
corn in three and a half or four months ; that it all depends upon the quality 
of the hogs, quality of the corn, weather, and other contingencies." 

The gain varies from five to twelve pounds gross per bushel. So he says: 
" AVe will compromise the matter by guessing that, all things favorable, one 
bushel of corn, fed in the ordinary way, will make seven pounds gross weight." 
It is, after all, then, nothing but guessing. And we guess that feeding corn, 
where it is worth a dollar a bushel, as it frequently is in and about New 
York, won't pay while dressed hogs are sold from the hooks, as they gener- 
ally are, at seven or. eight cents a pound, and the average price of live hogs 
is less than six cents a pound. With our arithmetic we can not figure up any 
profit for a farmer hereabouts to keep a single hog more than he wants to 
eat up the milk and house-slops, and a little waste grain ; and probably that 
could be more profitably fed to poultry. 

The greatest advantage from feeding grain to make pork in all the New 
England States must be looked for more in the manure than in the meat. 
Where manure must be purchased, it may be profitable to purchase corn- 


meal to convert into manure through the pig-pen manufactory. The next 
jiaragrapli is to the point in this connection, of feeding pigs to make manure. 
4. Working Pigs. — "We once recommended farmers to make their pigs 
working animals. To this a writer in an agricultural paper objected ; l)c- 
cause, as he alleges, the same amount of food consumed by an idle Img will- 
nuike 12 pounds of jiork as easily as it will make S pounds if the animal is 
allowed to exercise his natural propensity to root. In this we entirely agree, 
and iiavc often contended that when a Iiog is shut up to fatten, if lie was 
coiiiined in a slip so narrow that he could not turn round, having one side 
of his narrow prison nuide so as to be moved out as he increased in bulk, lie 
v.otild fatten faster than in any other position. Kow, will the writer, who 
thinks that we differ from him in opinion, read over again the article that ho 
criticises, and see that it is the pig-pen, and not the fatting-hog pen, that 
we were talking about. Our facts are not intended to be elaborated into 
proofs and arguments for farmers, but rather as texts for thinking men to 
think over and reason upon with themselves and neighbors. Our opinion is, 
tiiat all the swine family should be kept imprisoned, if not in close pens, 
certainly in strongly fenced lots ; and in all the Eastern States, where manure 
is so valuable, it is very doubtful wliether a farmer can ali'ord to let any of 
the family out of the pen — which, as we before hinted, should be a great 
manure manufactory — except, perhaps, for a sliort season to eat clover, peas, 
or glean a stnbble-lield. If there is a greater neighborhood nuisance tlian 
hogs in the highway, we have j'ct to liud it out; and as we would always 
keep "Mr. Pig" in tlie pen, we recommended to make him woi-k in the 
manuiactory, furnishing a part of the mateiials to be worked, and tlie farmer 
the remainder. In his immediate preparation for death we don't care how 
idly he spends the last of his days. As long as farmere will pei-sist in 
making tlie flesh of swine their leading article of food, we shall contend 
that the flesh of an animal that has worked liis way up to a mature age, and 
is then fattened ready for slaughter, Avill make more healthy food than tlie 
oily fatness of one always kept in a state of obcsitj- and idleness from his 
birth to death. It is this great physiological fact that causes the flesh of the 
wild hog to be sought after and eaten with gusto. "We fully agree with the 
orthodoxy of E. M. Brewster, a model farmer of Griswold, Conn., who says 
if he was to fatten a half-dozen liogs upon a flat rock, he would be sure to 
have two rings in each nose. The latitude that we desire our readei-s to 
give to our suggestions is just this : to make a distinction between working 
and fattening animals, and make tlie pig a useful one. 

" Keeping pigs eighteen months to fatten tlieni the last tliroc is not a 
paying business. Feed a decent pig loell from weaning until eight months 
old, and you M'ill get 250 lbs. to 300 lbs. of pork, and you do not usually get 
50 lbs. more for those ten months older. There can be no question but an 
animal can consume much more to produce in eighteen months about the 
same quantity of meat which is made by another in half that length of 
feeding. If the object of raising a hog is to malce pork, that end should be 

N. C. State College 


kept steadily in view — his swiueship should see it, and cat for it." This is 
our view exactly. Winter none but autumn pigs, keep tliein in pens, and 
always growing. "To kesp a pig growing, one must keep liiin ealing, and 
eating about all the lime. To do this, there is nothing, like ' change and 
variety' — now a little corn, then a little milk, a few boiled potatoes, a few 
raw a'pples — now a pudding, then a dish of greens — anything to keep them 
eating and stuffing when awake, even if it does rer^uire a little extra atteu- 

5. Cooking Food for Swinei — Circumstances must govern the feeder. If 
corn is worth but twenty-live cents per bushel, it is plain that it will not pay 
to expend much money either for cooking or crushing it ; bnt where food is 
iiigh, a small c[uantity saved pays for considerable labor, etc. It will hardly 
pay to expend dear labor upon cooking cheap roots to make low-priced poik. 
It has been proved that crushed barley, soaked in cold water 4G hours, gave 
more increase of weight to sheep than when not soaked ; but crushed malt 
did not. The figures are: Four sheep in 10 weeks ate 2S01bs. of crushed 
barley not steeped^ and 3,867 lbs. of mangel-wurzel, and increased in live 
weight SI lbs.; while four sheep, with barley crushed and steeped, ate 280 
lbs. and 5,321 lbs. mangel-wurzel, increasing lOlJ- lbs. Four sheep, with 
crushed malt, not steeped, ate in 10 M-eeks 22X5 lbs., ^"^ 3,755 lbs. mangel- 
wurzel, and increased 8i lbs. ; wdiile lour sheep, with malt crushed and 
steeped, ate 226ilbs. malt and 4,458 lbs. mangel-wurzel, and gained only 
78 lbs. In the above experiment, the question is, Did the additional 20ilbs. 
pay the extra trouble and extra feed of roots? 

An experiment in Ii-eland, lately made, proves that hogs gained more 
upon raw than cooked vegetables. Eight hogs were selected and divided 
into two lots, as evenly as could be, and put in to fatten, on the 27t!i of 
November. Each lot was fed regularly three times a day, having each 12 
lbs. of bran and barley meal, the only diiference being that one lot had 
steamed )-utabagas, and ihe other pulped or rasped ruta bagas. The experi- 
ment was continued 39 days ; the lot having cooked food ate 408 lbs. bran, 
etc., and 10,920 lbs. ruta bagas, and increased 103 lbs. ; while the lot having 
u7icooJced food ate 468 lbs. bran, etc., and only 5,460 lbs. ruta bagas, and 
gained 110 lbs. 

Sanniel II Clay, of Bourbon, Ky., has been experimenting in feeding several 
lots of hogs, changing them from raw to cooked, and from ground to 
unground foo J, with the following results : One bushel of dry corn made 
5 lbs. 10 oz. of live pork ; one bushel of boiled corn made 14 lbs. 7oz. of 
pork; one bushel of ground corn, boiled, made in one instance 16 lbs. 7oz., 
in another nearly 18 lbs. of pork. To get the value of corn, estimate the 
])ork at 8 cents a pound ; we have as the result of one bushel of dry corn, 
45 cents' worth of pork ; of one bushel of boiled corn, 115 cents' worth of 
pork ; and of one bushel of ground corn, 136 cents' worth of pork. 

6. Pig Feed— Roiled Weeds. — A widow, who was short of feed for her pig, 
said, in presence of her little boys, that she thought she would have to sell 


it, for she had so little to feed it with, and could not afford to buy feed 
One of tlie little fellows promptly answered tliat he knew what would be 
good to feed piggy with, and of which they had plenty. 

" What is it, my son ?" 

" Greens, mother — boiled greens. Tiiey are good for us, why not for 
pigs? And we can gather tlieui, and pick up wood and boil them in llie 
big kettle out doors, and it will be real fun." 

So it was settled that pig should cat greens — all sorts of weeds boiled ; 
and cat them he did, and liked them, and fatted on them, with the small 
addition that could be made of bran and house-slops, mixing the slops and 
greens together. 

This is a hint worth remembering and acting upon. Tlie weeds were 
destroyed, the boys employed, the pig kept growing, and the boys had the 
satisfaction of feeling tliat they had been usefully employed. 

7. Hog PastMffSi — It being generally understood that hogs live by " special 
providences" until it is time to fat them, there is little attention }Kiid to 
tl'.e most economical way of growing them up. Certain it is that a good, 
casv-keeping variety will make commendable ]irogro3S on grasx. 

It may be safe to calculate that a good-sized, thrifty pig will gain in six 
months, on grass, 100 lbs. or more. If an acre of grass would keep three 
hogs and add 100 lbs. to the weight of each, that would be $12 for the acre 
of pasture, reckoning the 300 lbs. gain at four cents a pound, live weight. 
Instead of being forced to bite twice at a short, dirty, dried, and battered 
spear of June grass by the roadside before getiing any off, imagine a clean 
and comely Suffolk in a fresh, green pasture of clover, four inches high, filling 
himself with evident relish. 

8. The Pig-Pen aud its VaiUf< — As a manure-maker, there is no animal 
ecpial to the hog, provided he is furnished with sui able facilities. The 
caiing and sleeping apartments of Mr. Pig shoulil always be a good frame 
building, with a ])lank floor and shingle roof, and it will in many places be 
found economical to give him an iron eating trough. His house should 
be cleaned out every day, and washed as often as necessary to keep it clean. 
All the washings and cleanings should go into an adjoining ])en, which may 
as well be made of fence rails, on account of cheapness and convenience of 
removal, into which the tenants of the hog-house nnist be invited by a little 
corn, scattered in every da}', to induce them to mix up a compost of tlieir 
own oil'al with sods, mold, leaves, weeds, and all sorts of trasli. This pen 
should be equal to ten feet square for every two hogs, and so long as it is 
worked every daj^ it will not much injure by exposure to the weather; but 
it should afterward be covered, and it should always have stuff enough i)ut 
in it to keep the hogs from getting into a very muddy condition. If you 
have not mold enough to entirely absorb the ammonia, you must use plaster 
or charcoal dust. It must be kept sweet, or you will lose much of its value ; 
and whore manure is valnalile. if yon neglect to use your swine for the 
purpose of increasing it, you will lose about all the profit of making your 


own pork. There is another Avay in which you can make the pig-pen 
valuable. If you have a spot of ground that you want to euricli and work 
deeply and thoroughly for fruit-trees or for garden vegetables, plant it with 
Jerusalem artichokes, and tlieu ya:-d your hogs upon ir, taking care to give 
them room enougli, so as not to necessitate tliem to make a quagmire. 
Ao-ain, you may use these animals to advantage if you have a piece of grass 
laud infested with grubs. Fence off a piece, and shut your swine in upon 
it for a few days without feed, and if they leave a sod unturned or grub 
uneaten it will be a wonder. It is the best preparation of such a spot for a 
hoed crop, or for sowing again in grass, that can be given. There is no good 
reason why the pig should be always kept in idleness or miscliief. Let him 
be trained to be useful in his life as well as at his death. 

9. Ilay Seed for HogSi — \con-esY>ondijntoi the Coimf/'t/ Genile?nan vfvltas: 
In addition to the grain and meal given to growing hogs in the sty, they 
should have a daily allowance of green clover, or in winter, when this is not 
available, a liberal allowance of hay-seed from the barn, mixed with their 
slop, which they will eat with avidity. He knows of no mode by which so 
great an amount of growth and weight can be induced, with equal cost of 
food, in the winter season, as by this liaying system. 

10. Cinders for Pigs.— J. J. Meelii, of Tiptreo Hall, England, says, in 
publishing his experience in fattening swine, that among other things, he 
has learned the fact " that pigs are very fond of coal-aslies or cinders, and 
that you can hardly fat pigs properly on boarded floors witliout giving tliem 
a moderate supply daily, or occasionally." lie says : " In the absence of 
coal-ashes, burned clay or brick-dust is a good substitute. If you do not 
supply ashes, they will gnaw or eat the brick walls of their sheds. I leave 
to science to explain the cause of this want. It is notorious that coal- 
dealers, whose pigs have access to the coals, are generally successful pig 
feeders. Those who find that their pigs, when shut up, do not progress 
favorably, will do well to try this plan. A neighbor of mine found that a 
score of fat pigs consume quite a basket of burned clay ashes daily. We 
know that there is an abundance of alkali in ashes." 

11. Parched f orn and Honey for Hogs. — A correspondent of the IlujJiland 
Democrat, published at Peekskili, N. Y., furnishes that paper with the fol- 
lowing communication : 

A few years ago I chanced in Albany to meet a farmer who is noted for 
raising unusually heavy hogs. The year before he had brought to market 
one tliat weighed over 700 lbs., and said that year that he should have one 
of 900 lbs., or near that mark. As tliere always ceems to be a cause for every 
effect, I was anxious to know the course lie pursued. 

''Well," said he, ''you must first select the riglit kind of a critter. Get 
the right breed, and then pick out the good-natured ones from the litter ; I 
can't afford to feed a cross critter ; I sell them when they are pigs." " How 
can yoii judge ?" said I. "Well, if you watch them when they are feeding, 
you will find tliat some pigs are allers fighting about their victuals, and 


souse go in for eating. Tliere is as mucli difference in pigs as there is in 

" "Well, when you have selected the right kind of a pig, what next is 
important ?" 

" Well, then you must have a nice place for the critters to live iu, and 
feed thcin on the right kind of victuals." 

" What kind of food ?" 

" Well, the best and cheapest kind of food I have found, when it comes 
time to put on the fat, is j>arc/u'd corn. I generally manage to buy a barrel 
ov two of Southern honey, if it is cheap, which I mix with the parched corn, 
f..r my fatting h.)gs." 

12. Feeding Standing foru to Hots— iu the Field— or Gathered, Ground, 
a;!d Cooked— Comparative Advantages of these Methods. — The method often 
[iriicticed by large farmers of turning fattening hogs into the fields of 
s'aiiding corn, if properly conducted, has its advantages over that of 
gathering the corn and feeding it dry to the hogs in the jien. 

The earlier in the season the process of fattening swine is begun the 
better, after the grain has reached a certain period of maturity, whether it 
be rye, oats, or corn, because all farm animals, and hogs in particular, will 
fa'.ten much faster in warm than in cold weather. And the grain between 
the periods of its doughy state and full maturity, or rather, before it becomes 
dry, is more easily digested, and assimilated, and converted into flesh and 
fat than when it has passed into its dry state. It is clear, then, that the 
sooner the hogs are turned into the field after the grains of corn are fully 
formed, and while yet in the milk, the more speedily they will fatten ; for 
if the weather be dry, the coi-n hardens very rapidlv. 

A very interesting experiment in feeding hogs is detailed by Mr. James 
Buckingham in the Prairie Farmer. On the Ctli day of September (in 
ordinary seasons corn, at this date, is too far advanced to commence feeding 
to the best advantage), the hogs, 1S9 in number, were weighed, and footed 
up in the aggregate 19,600 lbs. A movable fence "was used, confining the 
hogs to an area sufficient to aflbrd feed for two or three days. The entire 
field, thus fed, contained 40 acres, with an estimated average of 40 bushels 
])er acre. The consumption of this corn gave- a gain of 10,740 lbs. The 
hogs, when turned into the corn, cost three cents per pound, equal to §588 ; 
worth, when fed, four cents per ])ound, or §1,213 CO — giving a return for 
each acre of corn consumed of $15 G4. Adding to this $1 per acre for the 
improvement of the land by feeding the corn on the field, making the 
actual gain per acre $16 6i, equal to 40 cents per bushel, standing in the 
field. The whole cost of corn per acre, exclusive of interest on the land, is 
set down at $3 65. 

By way of comparing the advantages of ground and cooked food over 
that which was merely ground, and that which was nnground, Mr. B. put 
up three hogs into separate pens. To one he fed two and a half bushels of 
corn in the ear, during a period of nine days, feeding all he would eat ; this 


gave a gain of 19 lbs. ; anotlier ate in the same time one and three qxiarter 
bushels of corn, ground, and gained also 19 lbs. ; and to the third he fed 
one bushel of cnm, ground and hailed, which gave a gain of 22 lbs. Bj' tliis 
it will be s;'eii tliat one and three quarter bii^iliels of corn, when ground, will 
give a gain oi Ik'sh equal to two and a half busliels of iinground corn, and 
that one biishtd, wlien ground and cool-ed, gave a gain greater tlian either. 

Tlio comparative results of these tliree methods of feeding may thus bo 
set down : one busliel of corn, ground and cooked, is equal to nearly tliree 
bushels when fed dry and unground ; and one and three quarter bushels 
when ground and uncooked is equal to two and a half bushels wlien fed 

Or it may be seated thus : one bushel of dry corn in the ear makes Si 
lbs. of pork, which at four cents per pound is equal to 33 cents per busliel 
for the corn ; while one bushel of corn, ground and boiled, makes 22 lbs. 
of pork at four cents per pound, and is equal to 88 cents per bushel for tlie 
corn. This I'esult about sustains our calculations made upon the experiments 
by Mr. Samuel II. Clay, of Kentucky, as appears in ^ 5. 

It is worth}' of remark for those who wish to feed corn in the field, that 
had the hogs been turned into the field when the corn was in the milk, 
it would liave given a result more nearly like that of the hog fed ni)oa 
ground and cooked food. 

The obstacles which seem to be in t!ie way of adopting an improved 
method of fattening hogs result from the imperfect apparatus used for 
])rcparing the food. Sending corn a long distance to mill to be ground, and 
then to coo.k .he meal in an ordinary kettle, even if it holds a barrel, will 
])rove an expensive operation, as all have found who have undertaken it. 
But to realize the full advantages of feeding prepared food, a complete 
grinding and steaming apparatus must bo erected on a large scale, with the 
view to perform the grinding, cooking, and feeding with the greatest facility 
and at the least possible cost. This may be done to advantage by employing 
steam for grinding, using the same boiler to furnish steam for cooking the 

13. Ori?ia of t!ic Chester foanty Hogs,— It is stated that Captain James 
Jefleris, a eea-ca])fain, somewhere about 1820,, or a little later, in one of his 
voyages from England, brought over a pair of ]iigs of the Bedfordshire 
breed, which he sent to his fai'm on the Brandywine, whence the breed has 
been disseminated, and lost its original name. Some of the characteristics 
of the Chester County liog are, large size, remarkably symmetrical form, 
easy keeping, comparatively little offal, great depth and length of carcass, 
and producing large quantities of lard. Spring pigs are often put in market 
at nine or ten mon'hs old, and weighing at that age from 200 to 250 lbs. 
This weight is of course produced liy good feeding and proper attention. 

14-. To frevcut Sows KiHing their PIgSi— A correspondent of the Muiuf. 
Farmer speaks of several cases of sow.-: destroying their ju'gs — which, indeed, 
is not unusual — and conimcnds as an c.isy and su''e ])revention, " to give 


tlie sow .nboiit half a pint of good ruiu or gin, which soon produces intoxica- 
liiin, and the drunken mother becomes entirely harndess toward her young, 
and will ever accommodate her poiitiou to the be^^t advantage of the pig-^, 
ntaining this disposition ever afterward." The editor eonlirms tliis statement 
fiom cases witiiin his own knowledge. 

15. Pift-Brcfdiu,!^". — Notwithstanding the fact that more people are iiHerested 
in the breeding tif pigs than of any otlier class of domestic animals, the atten- 
tion paid to improvement of the stock is very small. How few farmers know 
that the sow should always be larger than tlie male, and that he should 
always be of the most perfettt form; of good color, and perfectly sound and 
liealtliy, because almost invariably the pigs take the qualities of the sire in- 
stead of the mother ; that is, his good or bad points will preponderate largely 
over those of the sow. Farmers, please think of this fact, and profit by it. 

16. Large UogSi — Isaac Harrison, of Burlington County, N. J., fatted, ki 
1858, 32 hogs that averaged 5G9 lbs. each; and William Taylor, of Ocean 
County, fatted 30 that averaged 537 lbs. each. Tliomas Hood, of Ocean 
County, fatted 41 that averaged 533 lbs. each. So says C. W. Hartsliorn, 
iif Burlington County, who sends us a list of weights, among which are very 
few under 500 lbs. ; the lightest that we notice weighs 428 lbs. 

17. Gross and Net Weight of Swiue. — The rule of ascertaining the net 
weight of fat hogs is to deduct one fifth of the gross weight. It is an easy 
way to make the calculation, or reduction of gross to net weight, by using 
tiie decimal 8-10 as a multiplier, cutting off one right-hand figure of the 
l)roduct, to show the net sum. Thus: 10 hogs Aveigh 2,729 lbs. ; multiply 
by. 8, which will make net 2,183.2 lbs. 

K you have the gross weight of a drove of hogs at home, which you may 
liave taken to market and sold at net weight, and wish to ascertain how the 
net and gross compare, take your sum of the net weight, say 2,183.2. Divide 
by 8-10, and j'ou will find the quotient 2,729. 

This will be found a very convenient and useful rule. Sometimes a person 
may be offered one sum as a gross price, and another as a net price of the 
same lot, and would like to know at once which otler is the best. This is 
(juickly done. You have simply to apply the same rule of division by eight 
tentlis to the price, instead of weight. For instance suppose the offer is — 
as it sometimes is in New York — $5 25 per cwt. gross, or $G 50 net. Divide 
§5 25 by 8-10, the quotient will be $6 56.2, showing that it will be six cents 
and two mills per cwt. gross to the owner's advantage to sell at $5 25 gross. 

18. Salting Meat Marm. — C. Eovie, of Gnllprairie, Michigan, asks : " "Will 
pork cin-e, if packed before tlie animal heat is all out of it ?" He then 
answers : " Last year I killed my hogs and packed them while warm. I 
have some of the pork now, and I never ate any sweeter pork than this is. 
Tlie most of farmers think pork salted, while warm, will not keej)." 

We have tried the experiment repeatedly of salting pork as soon as we 
could cut it up after dressing, and certainly prefer it, as it will, when dry- 
salted, cure much quicker. 


(Page 31.) 

This plate is intended to answer the question : ' ' What is a good 
cow ?" It shows a model cow, without regard to breed, as described 
in ^ 45, and a portrait of the " Oaks Cow," which was one of the 
most remarkable of the early age of stock improvement as a great 
butter producer. She gave 467 pounds from May 15 to December 
20, 181G. Another portrait gives the side view of what is taken 
as a model of a good dairy cow. The Dutch dairy cow is also con- 
sidered a model, not only of that breed, but of a form that shows 
a good cow for milk. The Hereford cow and bull, and Devon cow 
and bull, also give good studies, and make up a picture no where 
else to be found in such compact form and such beauty of execu- 


A Good Diity Cawr A Good Milrii r<rw 

1»1KKKHK>T llUKKDS •.r l'ATTI.K.rT»«1'XlTKl> STATKS . 

Seo. 3.} 



19. Species of Auimals. — ^Tlie Bevue Horticole, of Paris, gives a very inter- 
esting iiccount of a discussion in the Academie upon the species of animals. 
The primitive source of animals is lost ; tlie fossil bones of the horse are 
identical with those of the present day. There is no account of anything 
new in animal life since the Mosaic account of creation. 

20. Animal Strncture. — " Tiie bony frame-work of the animal owes its so- 
lidity to phoiiphate of lime, and this substance must be furnished by the 
food. A perfect food must supply the animal with these three classes of 
bodies, and in proper proportions. What proportions are the proper ones 
we have at present no means of knowing with accuracy. Tlie ordinary 
kinds of food for cattle contain a large quantity of vegetable fiber or woody 
matter, which is more or less indigestible, but which is indispensable to the 
welfare of herbaceous animals, as their digestive organs are adapted to a 
bulky and rough food. The addition of a small quantity of feed rich in oil 
and albuminous substances to the ordinary kinds of food, has been found 
highly advantageous in practice. Neither hay alone, nor concentrated food 
alone, gives the best result. A certain combination of the two presents the 
most advantages." 

The above is the view of an eminent professor of agi-icultural chemistry' 
(S. "W. Johnson), and it contains a great fact that should be adopted into the 
every-day practice of every farmer, and not only for his stock, but his own 
iionsehold. Every animal of a higher organization than a worm needs a 
diversity of food to make up a healthy animal structure. 


\ HAT is a Good Cow ? — This is a question that many 
owners of cows can not answer, because there is no 
standard. Every one has his own, and one person 
may recommend a cow on sale as positively good, 
that is not half as valuable as one that comes only 
up to the standard of another person's idea of good- 
ness. Besides, one cow may be good for producing 
milk for sale by the quart ; another good for making 
butter, where that alone is the object ; a third one 
may be good for a cheese dairy and very poor for 
butter; and a fourth not good for either purpose, 
and should at once be turned out for beef. Farmers 
do not experiment enough with their cows to ascer- 
Jp tain these facts. We have known one cow discarded 

from a butter dairy because she gave less milk than another, when one was 
to be sold, without any other proof that the rejected one was not equally 


good. For butter-making, vre think a cow which gives 14 quarts of milk a 
day, when fresh, and 14 lbs. of butter a week, a good cow, and that tliat 
might be adopted into use as tiie meaning of a good butter-dairy cow. A 
good many cows, it is true, go above tlmt, but they should be ranked as 
extra good. A cow that gives 12 or 14 quarts of milk a day, and 10 lbs. of 
butter a week, might be called a fair medium cow ; and one tliat gives 8 to 
12 quarts a day and 6 or 7 lbs. of butter a week, should be called com- 
mon, and all below that inferior, as in fact they are ; and so is a cow 
that gives 15 or 16 quarts of milk a day that yields only a pound of butter, 
and there are many of this description. Tlie lowest rate we ever lieard was 
3 (piarts of milk for 1 lb. of butter ; but that is very rare, the average being 
over 12 quarts. 

It would be an excellent ]ilan for some leading agricultural society to 
establish a standard for a good cow. We think a cow that comes up to the 
standard of that owned by Otis Hunt, of Eaton Village, N. Y., will pass for 
a good one. He gives the following statement of the amount of butter 
made from her: "Amount made from April 8 to July 8, 191 lbs. ; amount 
made during the month of June, 74 lbs. ; amount made during the year, 
516 lbs., besides furnishing all the milk and cream used in a family of four 
persons (and occasional visitors) all the time." 

The breed of this good cow is given as " native," and the quality of milk 
and butter excellent. 

22. Garget in fOMS. — A letter from Fort Independence, Castle IslaVid, 
Boston Harbor, Mass., says: 

"Within the last two years I have pureha-^ed at dliFerent times three 
cows, say about one every six months. After they are on the island a few 
months they becou'ie ' gargety ;' therefore I should think the complaint is 
brought on from eating some weed peculiar to this island, which is limited 
in extent, say about thirty acres." 

No, sir ; it is because they have not eaten some weed — a weed called poke 
or scoke, producing the " scoke-berries" that robins and school-children are 
both fond of gathering in the fall. This scoke is the natural cure for garget. 
It is said that the diseastc never atiocts cows th;it run in ])astures where it 
grows. We have known the dried roots sell for $2 a lb in Vermont to feed 
cows, and to make little plugs to insert in the teats to cure the garget. It is 
there known by the name of gaPL'ct root. {jiJnjtolacci dtcan<lra). 

23. How to Increase the Value of a Cow.— Every one who owns a cow 
can see at a glance that it would be profitable to increase the value of her, 
but every one can not see how to do it. We can, and we think that wc can 
make it equally palpable to our readers. If a cow is kejU for butter, it cer- 
tainly would add to her value if the butter-making projwrtios of her milk 
should be improved. In summer or winter this can be done, just as the yield 
of a cultivated crop can be impr ned by wh;>.t is fed to each, and it is simply 
a question of, will it pay, in manni ing one or feeding the other. Indian corn 
will add to the quantity and quality of the butter to a very sensible degree. 

Sec. 3.] COWS, AKD THEIR FOOD. 33 

and it is simply a question of easy solution, by experiment, whether it will 
add to the profit of the Luttcr-maker to buy corn at one or two cents a pound, 
and convert a portion of it into butter at 25 cents a pound, or whatever llie 
market price of corn and butter may be, and another portion of it into fat, 
and another portion of it into manure, for that is the natural result of the 
chemical change produced in the laboratory of the cow's stomach. The same 
result will follow any otiicr kind of feeding. Good jjasture will produce an 
abundance of milk, often as much as the cow can carry ; but does it follow 
that even then it will not be profitable to feed her Avitli some more oleagi- 
nous food to increase the quantity of butter, just as it sometimes ^^roves 
profitable to feed bees, to enable them to store more honey ? It certainly 
does appear to us that the value of a cow feeding xipon ordinary winter 
food may be almost doubled by making that food suitable for the purpose 
of increasing the quantity of milk, if that is the object, or the quantity of 
butter, if that is the purpose for which the cow is kept. Farmers generally 
understand that they can convert corn into beef, pork, and lard, and some 
of them know exactly at what price per bushel it will pay to convert it into 
these substances ; but does any one know at what rate it will pay to convert 
corn or any other grain into butter, or any other kind of feed into any of the 
dairy products ? Is the whole business a hap-hazard one ? We fear so. 
Some persons know that they can increase the salable value of butter by 
adding the coloring matter of carrots to it. Does any person know the 
value of a bushel of carrots fed to a cow to increase her value as a butter- / 
producing laboratory? Experimental proof upon this point would be far' 
more worthy of agricultural prizes than it is to see who can show the largest- 
sized roots ; for by a few carefully-conducted experiments we should be able 
to increase the value of a cow almost at pleasure. 

21. Pasture — How many t'ows to aa Acre. — In Cheshire, England, which 
is a great grazing county, the land that has been under-drained and top- 
dressed with ground bones, will carry one cow to each acre througli the 
summer, but the land not thus treated will only carry one cow to two acres. 
The dressing of bones upon pasture land is 12 to 15 cwt. per acre once in 
seven years. But even if not repeated at that time, it still continues better 
than it was before the bones were applied. 

Now, how many acres of pasture, on the average, does it require in this 
country to the cow? "Would it not be economy to improve our pasture 
lands up to the Cheshire standard ? 

25. Food Consumed by a Cow. — It is generally estimated that a cow needs 
each day three per cent, of her M'cight in hay. Tliat is, if she weighs 8 cwt., 
which a fair-sized cow will do, in working order, she will require 24 lbs., or 
its equivalent, of hay. For five months' feeding — 150 days — you will require 
3, GOO lbs. In the New England States the feeding period averages nearer 
six than five months, and therefore two tuns of liay should be allowed for 
each cow. 

26. Feed, Exercise, and Shelter have a powerful influence upon the health 


and comfort of all doincstic animals, and upon none is it more marked tlian 
upon the most valualjle of all, the cow. Every judicious farmer, who has 
an eye only to his purse, will see that his cows are bountifully supplied with 
proper food to produce the largest flow of milk, and rich in cream, and that 
his meadows and jiastui-es are free from noxious weeds, that will impart a 
disagreeable taste to the milk and butter. A mixture of timothy and white 
clover is the most desirable pasture for the dairy ; and the best and sweetest 
butter is generally produced in May and June ; for then kind Kature sends 
up a spontaneous supply of rich, juicy food, and the air is cool and pure, 
and all things combine to render the dairyman's task easy and delightful. 
But when the sun has scorclied the vegetation and imi)aired its nutritive 
properties, and the temperature of the atmosphere is like an oven, then there 
is need of skill to counteract the opposing influences of nature; and the task, 
though diflicult, can be accomplished, and a cool atmosphere created in the 
milk-room, and proper food supplied, as the reward of well-directed labor. 

Every farmer should jiractice, at least on a small scale, growing extra feed 
for his cows, when pasture fails. One of the easiest things grown for fall 
feed is cabbage. It gives an immense amount of food per acre. 

27. Feedillg Cows for Butter-iflakiag. — A writer in the Farmer and Gar- 
dener (Phila.) says: "The use of corn and cob-meal in my practice has 
produced more fat tlian butter. The best feed I have tried is two bushels of 
ship-stuiF to one bushel of ground corn. In the use of corn fodder, I have 
foimd great advantage in not only cutting, but steaming it. Many cows 
will not eat it witiiout its being steamed. ' Turnips are good enough, if the 
taste they impart to the butter is not objectionable. Pumpkins add largely 
to the quantity of milk, but the cream, in churning, is always frothy, and 
requires a longer time to be converted into butter. 

" My plan of feeding is as follows : I always let my cows go dry about 
the first of the new year, giving them, by this plan, a rest of some two 
months. During this period of rest I feed them on hay, corn fodder, and 
straw. As soon as they begin to spring, I add four quarts of meal to eacli 
cow, which, after being mixed with the long straw and fodder, is steamed, 
and fed a litde ivarn^. Until tlie calves are separated from the cows, this 
amount of food is given once a day, after which time I feed them three times 
a day." 

28. Health of Cows. — A sickly cow not only yields a diminished profit, 
but she yields sickly milk, and sickly in a higher degree than her flesh. 

If a cow eats anything that has a strong or disagreeable odor, it appears 
in her milk. 

If she eats anythijig medicinal, it comes out in her milk. 

If she is feverish, her milk shows it. 

If she lias sores about her, pus may be found in her milk. 

If she is fed upon decayed or diseased food, her milk, since it is derived 
from her food, will be unhealthy. It is as impossible to make good milk 
from bad food, as to make a good building from rotten timber. 


If there is anything wrong about her, it will appear in the milk, as that is 
an effective source of casting it froni her organism. 

These facts should at all times be well impressed upon the minds of dairy- 
men, but more especially in the cold season of the year. Closely confined in 
tlieir narrow stalls tlirough the long winter, where tlie air is not always 
fresh and pure, nor water and exercise always had when desired, nor their 
food always free from foul medicinal weeds, as thistles, daisies, white top, 
etc., cows are very likely to vary from a perfectly healthy condition ; spring 
cheese will be faulty enough, do the best we can — that every dairyman 
knows. The health of the cows should not, at any rate, be allowed to 
become a cause of deterioration. Green food should now, if it has not been 
before, alternated as often as possible with the dry ; for this purpose, beets, 
carrots, turnips, potatoes, cabbages, parsneps, and apples are valuable. 

Ventilation and Avatering should be promptly attended to, and salt and 
meal, made by pulverizing burned bones, should be kept where daily access 
can be had to them, if desired, nor should their strength and flesh be allowed 
to fail for the want of a sufKciently nutritious diet. The best flavored butter 
and cheese can not be made from cows that are badly fed, or ailing, or poor. 

As bad health in parents transmits a tendency to disease in the offspring, 
it is important that every kind of animal we desire to continue on our farms 
should be kept vigorous and healthy. 

As an unhealthy animal can not consume food to as good advantage as a 
well one, it is again economical to avoid disease. 

29. The Amount of Hay required for Cows— The Cost of Milk.— Otis Brig- 
ham, of "Westborough, Mass., after seventy years' experience in farming, 
says, in the New England Farmer, that good cows will eat, on an average, 
20 lbs. of hay per day when giving milk, and 15 lbs. when dry — not by 
guess-work, but tested by actual weighing, for months at a time. Then it 
is easy to calculate the cost of milk. In the neigliborhood of New York, 
the average value of hay is one cent a pound, and the quantity of milk hot 
over six quarts. At three and a half cents a quart, it will pay the hay bill, 
and one cent a day over. If other feed is given, the increase of milk must 
pay for that. The manure will be worth at least the cost of attendance and 
milking. If the milk is worth more than three and a half cents, it gives a 
profit; and if less, a loss. 

30. For Ktckitig Cows. — ^Take a short strap, and fasten the ends together. 
Next prepare a pin of some soft wood, about six or eight inclies long, one 
and a half inches in diameter. Take the cow by the off fore-leg, and double 
it at the knee-joint close ; pass the strap or loop over the knee, pressing it 
back until you can insert the pin between that and the knee-joint, and she 
can not kick. 

31. Directions for Spaying Cows. — Dr. Dadd, veterinary surgeon, in the 
American Stock Joiti'nal, says that the milk of spayed cows gives more cream 
than ordinary milk, and that tlie butter made from it is more delicious in 
taste. The milk is also invaluable for nursing infants. He thinks there is 



[Chap. I. 

no danger in performing tlio operation, if slcillfully clone, and the animal 
init tukIlt the inflnencc of sulphuric ether. 

Dr. Riggs, a veterinary surgeon, does not approve of giving chloroform to 
cows. He says: "It is no easy task to give ether or chloroform to animals 
generally, and it is usually quite as distressing to them as so slightly painful 
an operation as spaying. Tlie operation of casting is a very awkward one, 
and needless, and interferes with tlie case, if not the certainty, of the opera- 
tion. The ovaries are attached near the back-bone ; hence, -when a cow 
stands up, the pauncli and intestines fall away from them, and leave clear 
working space ; but when she is thrown upon her side, the case is different, 
and wlien the cow is in good flesh, there is none too jnucli space anj' way." 

Dr. liiggs allows the cow to stand up, her head tied short, and an assistant 
hold.s her by the nose with clasps; a rope is tied loosely about her hind legs, 
to keep her from kicking ; an assistant pushes her uj) against a partition or 
wall, and another aids in the first part of the operation. Thus, the cow is 
not at all alarmed or uncomfortable. 

The skin is folded so that the hair can be shaved off where the cut is to 
be, and thus a straight line, three quarters of an inch wide and five inches 
long, is laid bare. The skin is then drawn up in a fold, at right angles, to 
this line and in the middle of it. The operator grasps this fold on one side 
of the shaved line, in his left hand, and his assistant grasps it on the otlier 
side ; then, with a single, well-directed stroke, with a sharp knife, he severs 
the two thicknesses of hide exactly in the shaved line, letting go at the 
same time ; a straight, clean cut through the skin is seen, and the cow suffers 
almost no pain at all — not so much as that produced by the blow from a 
whip. If the cut is made slowly, it is the most painful part of the operation. 
There is little feeling in the tissues forming the walls of the cavity of the 
abdomen, and when these are cut tlirough, the hand may be easily introduced. 
The cow winces a little when the edges of the skin are rubbed, but shows no 
signs of pain. 

The removal of the ovaries appears very casj', but it is not. If the opera- 
tor has a strong, sharp thumb-nail, he can work or cut them loose; but if 
not, or if the ovary is strongly attached, the operator is obliged to do as the 
books say — "in short, ^m// them away" — and in this is the great danger to 
the cow ; internal hemorrhage or inflammation is apt to ensue. Dr. Riggs 
avoids all this by the use of the " steel thumb-nail." This is simply a sharp 
knife, shaped like and bound upon the thumb-nail of the right hand. Tliere 
is no danger of cutting in the wrong place. A clean cut does not produce 
bleeding, as was feared at first, and it greatly simplifies and shortens the 
operation. Dr. Riggs has never operated upon a cow with this instrument 
when she struggled or attempted to get down, but once, and then she was a 
little nervous, and came down upon her knees, but soon got up again. 
Usually there is no struggling throughout the operation. 

32. Calomel for Cows. — A correspondent of the yl7H('/vV«« J^armcr writes : 
"I wish you wo\ild say to your readers that calomel, in one ounce doses, Avill 

Sec. 3.] COWS— DAIRY STOCK. 37 

cure a cow of almost any disease. At least, let me give my experience. I 
have two fine, valuable cows ; they have had, it seems to me, some of the 
worst diseases tliat prevail — hlack-tongue, murrain, dry murrain, c;c. — and 
when I saw they were dying, I mixed one ounce of calomel in dry corn-nieal, 
which they would lick up, and it has never failed to cure." 

33. Keep fows GentlCi— If you milk out doors, with the cow loose, provide 
good stools for each milker. See that they are never used to pound the cow 
with ; and never allow man or woman to kick or pound a cow in the stable 
or milking yard. If gentle means will not make a cow gentle, harsh means 
never will. It may be necessary to reduce a cow to obedience by a little 
punishment — to teach her, as you would a horse or ox, that you are master; 
but to accomplish this, never use anything but a light lash or smart switch, 
and never use that in anger. An angry man is a fool, compared with a 
sensible cow. 

34. Ayrshire Cows. — In Massachusetts, the improvement of dairy stock by 
the introduction of Ayrshire blood has become so apparent, that no argu- 
ment could induce those acquainted with their value to return to the hazards 
(vf native breeding. We could point to farmers in Essex, Middlesex, and 
Vcircester counties, who, under the most prudent management, avail tliem- 
sclv^es of every opportunity to introduce Ayrshire blood into their herds, and 
our own observation teaches us that the importations of the Massachusetts 
Society for Promoting Agriculture, of Capt. Randall, of New Bedford, and 
(ithers, have been vastly beneficial to our dairy stock. The bulls of this 
broed can be traced wherever they have been, by the good stock they have 
left behind them. One of them was kept upon a secluded farm in Essex 
County, and rendered it famous for its fine dairy cows. Another gave 
superior character to the herd of one of our well-known farmers, and to all 
the dairies in his ncighboi-hood. An imported Ayrshire cov/, not far from 
us, has produced, through a variety of mixtures and pure breeding, a little 
herd of cows and heifers of tiie highest uniformity of excellence. 

35. Poor Butter Cows. — Tlie Ft'i!</'/?irt7'/rt« gives a remedy for this difficulty 
with cows that arc well kept, and whose milk has been previously rich in 
butter. It is to tlicse that the remedy is principally directed. The remedy 
consists in giving the animal two ounces of the sulphuret of antimony, with 
three ounces of coriander seeds, powdered and well mixed. This is to be 
given as a soft bolus, and followed bj' a draught composed of half a pint of 
vinegar, a pint of water, and a handful of common salt, for three successive 
mornings, on an empty stomach. 

This remedy, according to the author, rarely fails, and the milk produced 
some days after its exhibition is found to be richer in cream. The first 
churning yields a larger quantity of butter, but the second and third are 
still more satisfactory in their results. 

A letter from a farmer states that he had fourteen cows in full milk, from 
which he obtained very little butter, and that of a bad quality. Guided by 
the statements of M. Deiieubourg, which had apjieared in the An'nalesVet- 


en'jiauvs, he had separately tested the milk of his cows, and found that tlie 
bad quality of it was owing to one cow only, and that the milk of the others 
yielded good and abundant butter. It was, therefore, clearly established that 
the loss he liad so long sustained was to be attributed to this cow only. lie 
at once administered the remedy recommended by M. Deneubourg, which 
effected a cure. 

36. W'iiiter Feed of Oraage County Dairy Cows. — Mr. C. Edward Brooks, 
one of the best dairymen in tlie county, claims that rye makes more milk 
than corn or oats, or other meal. Brewei-s' grains were formerly bo\ight so 
as to cost 6 cents delivered at the farm, but now, at 12 cents, they are 
not so profitable as rye feed at 75 cents per bushel. Oats he esteems 
the i:)00rest kind of grain for ujilk. lie thinks that by currying a cow, and 
keeping her and her stable scrupulously clean, she will give lier full quantity 
of milk on half the feed required if she is neglected. Ilis daily allowance 
to each cow is five pounds of meal, either corn, corn and oats, or buckwheat 
or wheat bran, changing the kind frequently — for practice approves what 
theory teaches, that animals thrive best on a frequent change of diet. The 
animals are fed and milked at regular hours — generally at four o'clock in 
the afternoon and six in the morning; in winter, somewhat earlier in the 
afternoon and later in the morning. Care is taken to observe great punctu- 
ality as to time of milking, for the animals give much less trouble and thrive 
better. Mr. Brooks chati's his hay, steeps it in warm Avater to soften it, and 
sprinkles the meal over it, mixing it thoroughly. Throughout the day as 
much long hay is fed as the cows will eat. The feed is mixed in a long box, 
shaped like an ordinary bath-tub, which" runs on small iron truck-wheels, 
one at either end, and two at the sides, half way between. This is a very 
convenient method for carrying the whole mess along the passage between 
the stalls, and with a wooden scoop giving to each cow her share as her stall 
is passed. The water to steep the hay is heated in a caldron, in a small 
outbuilding, and conducted to the cow-stable through a small tin pipe. 

Mr. Seeley C. Roe, near Chester, a large dairyman and an intelligent 
farmer, thinks that half-clover hay, Avell made, and half grain, is better for 
milk production than twice as much timothy with grain. He does not cut 
and steep his hay, but dampens it with cold water, and adds meal, as usual. 
He finds it an excellent plan to feed buckwheat whole, and prepares it by 
boiling the grain with the hulls on, and M-hcn it lias become lliorouglily 
soaked, puts it into the feed-box at the rate of two quarts to cacli cow. He 
adds to this two quarts of dry meal, and the heat and steam of the cooked 
buckwheat cooks the meal. Four quarts of this mixture are allowed to 
each cow — two in the morning and two at night — and the animals arc kept 
on this feed until turned out to grass. 

Mr. Gregory has an eight-horse power engine for cutting hay, threshing, 
grinding, etc., and uses the waste steam for steaming his hay. He lias 
constructed a large chamber, capable of holding one himdred bushels of 
cut hay, which, before being steamed, is dampened. The steam-pipe from 

Seo. 3.] COWS— FEEDING ROOia 39 

the engine empties into the chamber, and the hay is steamed for about <i 
quarter of an hour, and then fud to the stock unmixed with meal — that is, 
given in the form of a warm mash. 

37. SHgar-Caue for Cows. — If the Chinese sngar-cane does not prove to 
be a profitable sugar-making plant, we think it will be a profitable one for 
forage. The Homestead says that Deacon Edward Ilayden, of East Hartford, 
Conn., has raised the Chinese sugar-cane for two years, and has used it for 
feeding milch cows with great success. The first year the stalks were left 
in the field, scattered about, we believe, and occasionally in dry weather 
brought to the barn to the cows, which ate them up clean, stalks and all. This 
was merely a sort of accidental experiment, as no especial value was set upon 
the canes. The past year he raised more, shocked in the field, and left it 
there. It cured well, and the cows ate it with great avidity, and Mr. Hay- 
den esteems it as a great milk-producing diet. 

38. FceJliag Hoots. — I have a word to say on winter feed for stock. It is 
more by way of query, and for feeders to think of, than by way of instruc- 
tion. My experience in feeding domestic animals is not sufficient to warrant 
nie in giving instruction. I have served my time in too rough a school for 
that. I have fed a good deal of hay, worth from $1 50 to $5 a tun ; and 
corn from 10 to 25 cents a bushel, and other grain in proportion, and 
straw absolutely valueless. While living in such a district, I have often 
been asked the question, "Why I did not raise more roots for my cattle? I 
answered : Simply because it would not jiiay. I did buy a lot of ruta bagas 
one autumn, delivered at my house at six cents a bushel, and the use of them 
taught me that they were dear food. I would now, if living in such a dis- 
trict, feed roots to stock just so far as I thought necessary to keep the animals 
in good health, and no more ; not if I could buy at the same price, which 
was one fourth the price of sound corn ; and I question the economy of feed- 
ing any kind of roots at the same rate of value to any greater extent than is 
required for health. Tiiat roots, particularly white turnijis, are too largely 
fed in cold weather to young cattle, I have no doubt. They are so full of 
water that too much of it is taken into the stomach with the food. If roots, 
or any other watery food, are too largely fed to milch cows before and after 
calving, you will be sure to have a mean calf. If we will think, and take 
reason for a guide, as to what man requires for healthy food, we shall not go 
far wrong with domestic animals. Man likes roots occasionally, and so ho 
does soup, or other sloppy food ; but what wotild he be good for if fed week 
after week upon such watery stuff as turnips, or such porridge as some people 
compel their cattle to eat ? After all, this question of winter feeding is a 
question of values ; and it is not alone the value, counted by first cost, but 
the value of results. Now, what is the use of giving my opinion that this or 
that kind of food is the best, or most economical, when I can not say of a 
single thing, •! know. I don't know, and don't know anybody who does. 
It is all guess-work, and at the present price of cattle-food, it is e.xpensive 


39. Wintering Cows. — The method of feeding cows in winter is not so im- 
portant as it is to make the change from grass to hay and from hay ta grass 
witliout producing any deterioration in their condition. It is liigldy import- 
ant, if yonr cows are giving milk ii{)on autumn pasture, that you do not 
allow them to fall ofl' in milk or flesh for want of a little extra feed. I have 
never found anything quite equal to corn-meal for cow-feed, particularly 
when you are making butter. It may not be necessary nor economical to 
feed cows meal in autumn, even if pasture does fail, if you have green corn- 
stalks, pumpkins, turnips, cabbage, etc., which must be consumed, because 
not good to keep through winter. But in spring, when cows are flrst turned 
to grass, they are very apt to fall away, and then it will be found to be good 
economy to feed meal every night in the yard, and so it will before the cows 
are turned out, if not in first-rate condition. 

I see the calculation of one writer that corn-meal, thus fed, Avas worth $3 
a bushel, fed at the rate of one quart a day to a cow, for twenty or thirty 
days. He says : 

" I have also found, by other experiments, that there is a great difference 
in the manner of getting animals to grass. When turned out early, with 
little or no other feed, tliej' fall away greatly; on the coqirary, if fed all the 
good hay they will eat, night and morning, with a judicious feeding of meal 
of some kind (and I prefer mixed feed — that is, mixing the difl'erent grains 
together before tliey are ground— to any one variety), they will soon begin 
to gain finely by such a course, and carry their extra weights through the 
season. In an experiment now being conducted, I have a cow that has, since 
the first of December last, been quietly laying on her two pounds per day 
(or nearly so), and her feed has been only moderate, as I am no advocate for 
forcing, but simply good fair keeping and care ; then, with good animals, we 
are sure of a fair remuneration for care and feeding. 

"I would that what I have already written could reach the eye of every 
farmer in these United States, and that each one would set liimself about 
making at least one experiment in the care of farm-stock." 

40. Cows Badly Wintered arc ruprofltable.— A farmer can not afford to 
winter any stock poorly, and least of all, milch cows, or those which are to 
produce calves in the spring. Look at the following statement, and see if the 
Western Reserve farmers can aft'ord thus to winter cows. 

A letter from Warren, Trumbull County, Ohio, written in April, ISCO, 
says : "The present times are the worst we have ever known in this country. 
Cows and cattle are dying by the hundred ; six hundred liead have died 
within the three adjoining counties this winter for want of food. Tlie 
weather is still dry and cold." 

This is only one, among many illustrations, of the folly and wrong com- 
mitted by Western farmers in keeping more stock than can be housed and 
fed. This is the case all through the Western country. Travel over any 
portion of it, and you will see scores of cattle shivering in the cold storms 
of winter, without shelter, and so poorly fed that if they live through the 


severe season it is more by cliance thaii for any care whicli they receive. On 
the prairies, cattle can be kept so easily in summer that every one is tempted 
to overstock himself to such a degree, while the grass is green, that a portion 
must die in winter. Now we would say to the fanners, you can not afford 
this. Every one of these six hundred cattle which perished in Ohio could 
have been sold at a low price by the owners, who were short of feed, to 
others who would have carried them through the winter. And how infinitely 
better this would have been than to allow such an amount of stock to die 
of starvation ! 

It is not only in Trumbull County that cattle have perished in winter ; 
the entire West has suffered equally in this respect with Ohio. On the 
Illinois prairies, where there is no limit to the amount of hay that might be 
cut, cattle have died in large numbers for the want of a quarter more hay 
'than they had eaten during the winter. And yet the farmers of those dis- 
tricts persevere in their criminal folly, although the result of each year's 
experience ought to be sufficient to open their eyes to a proper realization 
of the truth. No farmer can afford to keep more cows or horned cattle than 
he can provide hay for at the rate of two tuns per head ; he should never 
attempt to keep moi'e cattle than he can house warmly, unless lie has hay to 
waste, and is willing to sacrifice at least one fourth of the stock. 

It is one of the most painful sights to be met with in traveling through the 
West, while passing the little cabins of the new settlers, to see cows and 
calves, oxen and young stock, all huddling together, without any shelter from 
the cold winter storm. Is it any wonder that one half of these liimished, 
neglected things should perish before spring? Farmers, you must learn 
wisdom from the calamities of severe winters. Keep fewer cattle, and 
keep them better, and you will make more mone3-. We might give hundreds 
of extracts from country papers to convince you that feed is scarce every 
year, but it would be superfluous. The richest corn country of Indiana 
has suffered quite as much as its sister States during many hard winters • 
and this is because it is a rich corn country, and rich in nothing else. Large 
farms without grass ; cattle without food, dying by thousands ; farmers 
losing all their stock, " because it is a late spring," or, rather, because they 
undertook to winter an unreasonable number. Will the fiirmers of our 
country never take advantage of the experience of the past, and learn that 
they can not afford these wasteful and ruinous sacrifices ? 

il. To €hoosc a Good MiEch Cow, — Select from a good breed. We ]irefcr 
the Devons^bright bay red. The Durhams are roan, red, M-hite, and mix- 
tures of these colors. Ayrshire cows arc generally red and M-hite spotted. 
Ilerefords, red or darker colored, with white faces. Alderncys, pale red and 
mixed with white. These are the principal colors of the several breeds of 
whicli the Durhams are the largest and Alderneys the smallest. Different 
individuals will contend for eacli breed being the best and only one that 
should be selected for their milking qualities. But animals of each breed 
and of crosses of them, often prove remarkable milkers, and so do some of the 


native stock of the country. Two families of cows — one owned by Colonel 
Jaques, of Ten Hills Fann, near Charlcstown, Mass., and one owned liy 
Major John Jones, of Wheatland Farm, near Middletown, Del. — were called 
native breed, yet were the most remarkable butter-makers we have overseen. 
We have seen Col. Jaques produce good butter in throe minutes, by simply 
stirring the cream in a bowl. If we were about selecting a milch cow, we 
would endeavor to get one out of such a herd of good milkers ; one with a 
soft, velvety-feeling skin, slim neck, fine legs, broad stern, with what is 
called a large escutcheon — that is, the hair of the stern pointing inward ; a 
large udder, slim teats, and large veins, commonly called milk veins, on the 
belly. Above all things, select your cow of a gentle, pleasant countenance, 
because a lirst-rate milker may be so vicious as to be worthless. Do not look 
for flesh, as the best cows are seldom fat ; their hip-bones are often vcr}- 
prominent, and they have the appearance of being low in flesh. A beefy 
cow is seldom a good milker. 

The next thing is, what is a good milker? That is, how mucli milk must 
she yield per day ? A cow that will average 5 quarts of milk a day through 
the year, making 1,825 quarts, is an extraordinary good cow. One that will 
yield 5 quarts a day for 10 months is a good cow, and one that will average 
4 quarts during that time is more than an average qualitj'. That woultl 
make 1,200 quarts a year, which, at three cents a quart, is $36. We believe 
the Orange County milk dairies average about $40 per cow, and the quality 
of the cows is considerably above the average of the country. 

It is as important to keep a cow good as it is to get her good. This can 
never be done by a careless, lazy milker. Always milk yoiir cow quick and 
perfectly clean, and never try to counteract nature by taking away her calf. 
Let it suck, and don't be afraid "it will butt her to death." It will distend 
the udder, and make room for the secretion of milk. Ee ge-ntle with your 
cow, and you will have a gentle cow. Select well, feed M'ell, house M'ell, 
milk well, and your cow will yield well. 

42. The Different Breeds of fowsi — We advise you to examine, in this 
connection, the diflereiit breeds of cows, so that the general appearance, so 
far as outline of form is concerned, may be very well understood. Good 
and full descriptions may be found in a standard work upon " Jlilcli Cows 
and Dairy Farming," edited by Charlcj L. Flint, secretary of the Massaclui- 
setts State Board of Agri.?nlture, and we give a few short extracts from that 
work, upon each breed, as follows : 

43. Ayrshire Cows Described! — " The Ayrshires are justly celebrated 
throughout Great Britain and this country for their excellent dairy qualities. 
Though the most recent in their origin, they are pretty distinct from the 
other Scotch and English races. In color, the pure Ayrshires are generally 
red and white, spotted or mottled — not roan, like many of the short-horns, 
but often presenting a bright contrast of colors. They are sometimes, 
thougli rarely, nearly or quite all red, and sometimes black and white ; but 
the favorite color is red and white brightly contrasted, and by some, straw- 


berry color is preferred. The head is small, fine, and clean ; the face long, 
and narrow at the muzzle, with a sprightly, j'et generally mild, expression ; 
eye small, smart, and lively ; the horns short, fine, and slightly twisted 
upward, set wide apart at the roots ; the neck thin ; body enlarging from 
fore to hind quarters ; the back straight and narrow, but broad across the 
loin; joints rather -loose and open; ribs rather flat; hind quarters rather 
thin ; bone fine ; tail long, fine, and bushy at the end ; hair generally thin 
and soft ; udder light color and capacious, extending well forward under the 
belly ; teals of the cow of medium size, generally set regularly and wide 
apart ; milk-veins prominent and well developed. The carcass of the pure- 
bred Ayrshire is light, particularly the fore quarters, which is considered by 
good judges as an index of great milking qualities; but the pelvis is capa- 
cious and wide over the hips. 

" On tlie whole, the Ayrshire is good-looking, but wants some of the sym- 
metry and aptitude to fatten which characterize the short-horn, which is 
supposed to have contributed to build up this valuable breed on the basis 
of the original stock of the county of Ayr." 

44. Yield of Miik of Ayrshire Cowso — " Youatt estimates the daily yield of 
an Ayrshire cow, for the first two or three months after calving, at five 
gallons a day, on an average ; for the next three months, at three gallons ; 
and for the next four months, at one gallon and a half. This would be 850 
gallons as the annual average of a cow; but, allowing for some unproductive 
cows, he estimates the average of a dairy at 600 gallons per annum for each 
cow. Three gallons and a half of tlie Ayrshire cow's milk Avill yield one 
and a half pounds of butter. lie therefore reckons 257 lbs. of butter, or 
514 lbs. of cheese, at the rate of 24 lbs. to 28 gallons of milk, as the yield 
of every cow, at a fair and perhaps rather low average, in an Ayrshire 
dairy, during the year. Alton sets the yield much higher, saying that 
" thousands of the best Ayrshire dairy-cows, when in prime condition and 
well fed, produce 1,000 gallons of milk per annum; that in general three 
and three-quarters to four gallons of their milk will yield a pound and a 
half of butter ; and that 27 j gallons of their milk will make 21 lbs. of full- 
milk cheese." Mr. Eankin puts it lower — at about 650 to 700 gallons to 
each cow ; on his own farm of inferior soil, his dairy produced an average 
of 550 gallons only." 

45. ¥ie!d of Milk of Breeds Compared. — " In a series of experiments on the 
Earl of Chesterfield's dairy farm, at Bradley Hall, interesting as giving 
positive data on which to form a judgment as to the yield, it was found that, 
in the height of the season, the Holderness cows gave seven gallons and one 
quart per diem ; the long-horns and Alderneys, four gallons and three 
quarts; the Devons, four gallons and one quart; and that, when made into 
butter, the above quantities gave, res2:)ectively, 3Si ounces, 28 ounces, and 
25 ounces. 

" The Ayrshire, a cow fiir smaller than the Holderness, at five gallons of 
milk and 34 ounces of butter per day, gives a fair average as to yield of 


milk, and an enormous production of butter, giving witiiin four and a half 
ounces as much from her five gallons ns the Holderness from her seven gal- 
lons and one quart ; her rate being nearly seven ounces to the gallon, while 
tliat of the Holderness is considerably under six ounces. 

" According to Mr. Ilarley, the most approved shape and marks of a good 
dairy cow are as follows: Head small, long, and narrowtoward the muzzle; 
horns small, clear, bent, and placed at considerable distance from each other ; 
eyes not large, but brisk and lively ; neck slender and long, tapering toward 
the head, with a little loose skin below; shoulders and fore quartei-s light 
and thin ; hind quarters large and broad ; back straight, and joints slack 
and open ; carcass deep in the rib ; tail small and long, reaching to the heels ; 
legs small and short, with firm joints ; udder square, but a little oblong, . 
stretching forward, thin-skinned, and capacious, but not low hung; teats or 
paps small, pointing outwai-d, and at a considerable distance from each other ; 
milk-veins capacious and prominent ; skin loose, thin, and s<ift, like a glove ; 
hair short, soft, and woolly; general figure, when in flesh, handsome and 
well proportioned." 

46. The Ayrshires for the Dairy — Their Value Considered.— Upon this 
point Mr. Flint quotes and indorses the following opinion : 

"For purely dairy purposes, the Ayrshire cow deserves the first place. 
In consequence of her small, symmetrical, and compact body, combined with 
a well-formed chest and a capacious s'omach, there is little waste, compara- 
tivel}'^ speaking, through the respirator}' system; while, at the same time, 
tiiere is very complete assimilation of the food, and thus she converts a large 
proportion of her food into milk. So remarkable is this fact, that all dairy 
farmei-s who have any experience on the point, agree in stating that an 
Ayrshire cow generally gives a larger return of milk for the food consumed 
than a cow of any other hreed. Tlie absolute quantity may not be so great, 
but it is obtained at a less cost ; and this is the point upon which the question 
of profit depends." 

47. The Jersey or Alderaey fow. — Tliere is a great diversity of opinion 
about the value of this breed of cows. It is our opinion that they are the 
most Valuable of all, where only one or two are to be kept, and when butter 
is the main object. The milk of an Alderney cow is the richest of all for 
household consumption, and makes the most and best butter; and the cow 
is generally very docile, and in her native country is frequently kept upon 
very much such food as we keep a pig upon in this country. Tlie greatest 
olijection that we have heard urged upon them is their small size and lack 
of beauty, as compared with the symmetrical forms of Durhams, Devons, 
Ayrshires, and some of our natives. It is objected, too, that butter and 
cheese made from Alderney cows' milk will not keep, because it is " too rich." 
If it is mixed with other milk, it improves both, for then the butter and 
cheese are rich, and have no hu-k of keeping qualities. 

48. Ori.Tin and Description of Jersey Cows. — " The Jersey race is supposed 
to have been derived originally from Kormandy, in the northern part of 


ImportGtL Datcii Cow luiported DiLtch BiilL 


(Page 44.) 

This picture is a stud}- of four of the improved breeds of cattle 
which are briefly described in Chapter I., pages 31 to 51 ; and with 
the other two upon Plate III., the reader has, as it were, at one 
view, representatives of the Durham, Devon, Hereford, Ayrshire, 
Jersey or Alderney, and the improved Dutch — six of the most im- 
portant breeds of imported cattle. These beautiful pictures, with 
what we have said of the animals, will give those who have no op- 
portunity of studying them alive, a very good insight of their varied 
form and character. For this they should be highly valued, as they 
are true representations from life. 


France. The cows have been long celebrated for the production of very 
rich milk and cream, but till within a quarter of a century they were com- 
paratively coarse, ugly, and ill-shaped. Improvements have been very 
marked, but the form of the animal is still far from satisfying the eye. The 
head of the pure Jersey is fine and tapering, the cheek small, the throat 
clean, the muzzle fine and encircled with a light stripe, the nostril high and 
open ; the horns smooth, crumpled, not very thick at the base, tapering, and 
tipped with black ; ears small and thin, deep orange color inside ; eyes full 
and placid ; neck straight and fine ; chest broad and deep ; barrel hooped, 
broad and deep, well ribbed up ; back straight from the withers to the hip, 
and from the top of the hip to the setting on of the tail ; tail fine, at right 
angles with the back, and hanging down to the hocks ; skin thin, light color, 
and mellow, covered with fine, soft hair; fore legs short, straight, and fine 
below the knee; arm swelling and full above ; hind quarters long and well 
filled; hind legs short and straight below the hocks, with bones rather fine, 
squarely placed, and not too close together; hoofs small; udder full in size, 
in line with the belly, extending Avell np behind ; teats of medium size, 
squarely placed, and wide apart, and milk-veins very prominent. The color 
is generally cream, dun, or yellow, with more or less white, and the fine 
head and neck give the cows and heifers a fawn-like appearance, and make 
them objects of attraction in the park ; but the hind quarters are often too 
narrow to look well, particularly to those who judge animals from the 
amount of fat they carry." 

49. Fattening Properties of a Jtrsey €ow. — " It is asserted by Colonel Le 
Couteur, of the island of Jersey, that, contrary to the general opinion here, 
the Jersey cow, when old and no longer wanted as a milker, will, when dry 
and fed, fatten rapidly, and produce a good quantity and excellent quality 
of butchers' meat. An old cow, he says, was put up to fatten in October, 
1850, weighing 1,125 lbs., and when killed, the 6th of January, 1851, she 
weighed 1,330 lbs., having gained 205 lbs. in 98 days, on 20 lbs. of hay, a 
little wheat-straw, and 30 lbs. of roots — consisting of carrots, Swedes, and 
mangel-wurzel — a day." 

50. The Short-ljorn Durham €ow. — There is no room for dispute about the 
Durhams being good for beet'. For butter or for general dairy purposes, I 
shoidd not choose them. Mr. Flint says: 

"In sections where the climate is moist and the food abundant and rich, 
some fiimilies of the short-horns may be valuable for the dairy ; but they 
are most frequently bred exclusively for beef in this country, and in sections 
where they have attained the highest perfection of form and beauty, so litle 
is thought of their- milking qualities, that they are often not milked at all, 
the calf being allowed to run with the dam." 

Crosses, however, of this breed upon other breeds have produced excellent 
milkers. In Westchester County, N. Y., there is a valuable strain of daiiy 
stock known as " Dutch and Durham." 

51. The Dutch Cow. — The old Holland stock shows a very symmet- 


rical, handsome form, but not quite as much so as the Durham, which ■was 
made uji, it is generall}' su])posed, by a cross of the Dutch breed upon the 
Teeawater stock. The Dutch cow is not as heavy an animal as the improved 
Durham, but she is more highly esteemed for dairy purposes. 

52. The Hfreford f ow. — '• Tiie Hereford cattle derive their name from a 
county in the western part of England. Tiieir general characteristics are a 
white face, sometimes mottled; white throat, the white generally extending 
back on the neck, and sometimes, though rarely, still farther along on the 
back. The color of the rest of the body is red, generally dark, but some- 
times light. Eighty years ago the best Hereford cattle were mottled or 
roan all over; and some of the best herds, down to a comparatively recent 
period, were either all mottled, or had the mottled or speckled face. The 
exi)ression of the face is mild and lively ; tlie forehead open, broad, and 
large ; the eyes bright and full of vivacity ; the horns glossy, slender, and 
spreading ; the head small, though larger and not quite so clean as that of 
the Devons; the lower jaw iinc; neck long and slender; chest deep; breast- 
bone large, prominent, and very muscular; the shoulder-blade light ; shoulder 
full and soft ; brisket and loins large ; hips well developed, and on a level 
with the chine ; hind quarters long and well filled in ; buttocks on a level 
with the back, neither falling olf nor raised above the hind quarters; tail 
slender, well set on ; hair fine and soft ; body round and full ; carcass deep 
and well formed, or cylindrical ; bone small ; thigh short and well made ; 
legs short and straight, and slender below the knee ; as handlers very excel- 
lent, especially mellow to the touch on the back, the shoulder, and along the 
sides, the skin being soft, flexible, of medium thickness, rolling on the neck 
and the hips ; hair bright ; face almost bare, whicii is characteristic of pure- 
bred Ilercfords. They belong to the middle-horned division of the cattle 
of Great Britain, to which tliey are indigenous." 

Tliere are individual good milkers among the Ilerefords, as there are 
among the Durhams, but like them, we must say they are better for beef 
than milk. "We certainly never should select the Ilereford breed for dairy 
purposes. The form of the cow, as represented among the specimens we 
have seen of the best herds in this countiy, is that of a beef-producing ani- 
mal, or a breed for good working oxen, for which it is noted. 

53. The Devon Cow. — "This beautiful race of cattle dates farther back 
than any well-established breed among us. It goes generally under the 
simple name of Devon ; but the cattle of the southern part of the county, 
from which the race derives its name, differ somewhat from those of the 
northern, having a larger and coarser frame, and far less tendency to fatten, 
though their dairy qualities are superior. 

" The Korth Devons are remarkable for hardihood, symmetry, and beauty, 
and are generally bred for work and for beef rather than for the dairy. 
The head is fine and well set on ; the horns of medium lengtli, generally 
curved ; color usually bright blood-red, but sometimes inclining to yellow ; 
skin thin and orange-yellow ; hair of medium length, soft, and silky, making 


the animals remarkable fine handlers ; muzzle of the nose white; eyes full 
and mild ; ears yellowish, or orange-color inside, of moderate size ; neck 
rather long, with little dewlap ; shoulders oblique ; legs small and straight, 
and feet in proportion ; chest of good width ; ribs round and expanded ; 
loins of first-rate quality, long, wide, and fleshy ; hips round, of medium 
width ; rumj) level ; tail full near the setting on, tapering to the tip ; thighs 
of the bull and ox muscular and full, and high in the flank, though in the 
cow sometimes thought to be too'light; the size medium, generally called 

" As milkers, they do not excel, perhaps they may be said not to equal, 
the other breeds, and they have a reputation of being decidedly below the 
average. In their native country the general average of a dairy is one 
pound of butter per day during the summer. 

" Tliey are bred for beef and for work, and not for the dairy, and their 
yield of milk is small, though of a rich quality. 

" On the whole, whatever may be our judgment of this breed, the faults 
of the North Devon cow can hardly be overlooked from our present point 
of view. The rotundity of form and compactness of frame, though they 
contribute to her remarkable beauty, constitute an objection to her as a dairy 
cow, since it is generally thought that the peculiarity of form which disposes 
an animal to take on fat is somewhat incompatible with good milking quali- 
ties, and hence Youatt says: 'For the dairy, the North Devons must be 
acknowledged to be inferior to several other breeds. The milk is good, and 
yields more than the average proportion of cream and butter; but it is 
deficient in quantity.' He also maintains that the value of this breed for 
milk could not be improved without probable or certain detriment to its 
grazing qualities. 

"But the fairest test of its fitness for the dairy is to be found in the 
estimation in which distinguished Devon breeders themselves have held it 
in this respect. A scale of points of excellence in this breed was established 
some time ago by the best judges in England ; and it has since been adopted, 
with but slight changes, in this country. These judges, naturally prejudiced 
in favor of the breed, if prejudiced at all, made this scale to embrace one 
hundred points, no animal to be regarded as perfect unless it excelled in all 
of them. Each part of the body was assigned its real value in the scale: a 
faultless head, for instance, was estimated at four ; a deep, round chest at 
fifteen, etc. If the animal was defective in any part, the number of i)oints 
which represented the value of that part in the scale was to be deducted ^ro 
rata from the hundred, in determining its merits. But in this scale the cow 
is so lightly esteemed for the dairy, that the udder, the size and shape of 
which is of the utmost consequence in determining the capacity of the milch 
cow, is set down as worth only one point, while, in the same scale, the horns 
and ears are valued at two points each, and the color of the nose and the 
expression of the eye are valued at four points each. Supposing, therefore, 
that each of these points was valued at one dollar, and a perfect North 


Devon co^v was valued at one luindred dollars; then anotlier cow of the 
same blood, and equal to the first in every respect, except in her udder, 
which is such as to make it certain that she can never be capable of giving 
milk enough to nourish her calf, must be worth, according to tiie estimation 
of the best Devon breeders, jiinet\--nine dollars ! It is safe, therefore, to say 
that an animal whose udder and lacteal glands are regarded, by those who 
best know her capacities and her merits, as of only one quarter part as much 
consequence as the color of her nose, or half as much as the shape and size 
of her horns, can not be recommended for the dairy. The improved Xor.h 
Devon cow may be classed, in this respect, with the Hereford, neither of 
which have well-developed milk-vessels — a point of the utmost consequence 
to the practical dairyman." 

5i. The 3Iilk-5Iirrori — Tliis is a term given in the Guenon method of 
selecting good cows, to the escutcheon formed by the change of direction in 
the hair on the rear part of the udder and parts adjacent. If this n'.irror is 
large, it is supposed to indicate a good milker. For the better understanding 
of it, we recommend a careful study of the " milk-mirror," and see how it 
is generally developed upon all real good milkers — that is, good for quantity 
rather than quality. 

"Milk-mirrors vary in position, extent, and the figure they represent. 
They may be divided, according to their position, into mirroi-s or escutcheons, 
jiroperly so called, or into lower and upper tufts, or escutcheons. The latter 
are very small in comparison with the former, and are situated in close 
]>roximity to the vulva, as seen in difierent breeds of cows. They are very 
common on cows of bad milking races, but are verj- rarely seen on the best 
milch cows. They consist of one or two ovals, or small bands of up-growing 
hair, and serve to indicate the continuance of the flow of milk. The period 
is short in proportion as the tufts are large. They must not be confounded 
with the escutcheon proper, which is often extended up to the vulva. They 
arc separated from it by bands of hair, more or less large, as you will find 
from careful examination." 

It requires some skill to determine the exact size of a milk-mirror, since it 
is not equally m'cII defined in all cows, being at first sight apparently large 
in some, which, upon close examination, will show faults — that is, that tlie 
escutcheon of out-growing hairs is broken by tufts of down-growing hairs. 
Mr. Flint says: 

" We often find cows whose milk-mirror at first sight appears very large, 
but which arc only medium milkers ; and it will usually be found that lateral 
indentations greatly diminish the surface of up-growing hair. Many errors ■ 
are committed in estimating the value of such cows, from a want of attention 
to the real extent of the milk-mirror. 

" All the interruptions in the surface of the mirror indicate a diminution 
of the quantity of milk, with the exception, however, of small oval or 
elliptical plates, which are found in the mirror, on the back part of the 
udders of the best cows. 


(Page 48.) 

Tins is a very instructive picture to every young farmer, and there 
are a good many old ones who may make of it a vahiable study. 
Many persons are not aware that the age of a suckling calf, week by 
week, can be told by examining the teeth. Look at these drawings 
and see how easy it is to learn the art — an art which every farmer's 
boy should undei'stand. So the age of a cow, as well as a horse, 
can be told from year to year, by looking at the teeth, more cer- 
tainly than by the horns. For this purpose this plate possesses 
great value ; but it has a greater one in the illustration of what is 
now well known as the "milk mirror," which is described at ^ 54, 
and much more fully in Guenon's work, from which the theory is 
derived. In this plate the mirror is represented by coloring the pic- 
ture so as to show the field of upturned hair around the udder in its 
most fully developed form upon No. 1, and quite defective in No. 4. 
By studying these, and comparing them with living cows, something 
of the theory may be learned. It is very fully illustrated in Flint's 
work upon milch cows and dairy farming. It is .a subject worthy 
of the attention of all farmers. 


In a fat cow, with an inflated udder, the mirror would appear larger 
than it really is ; while in a lean cow, with a loose and wrinkled udder, it 
.appears smaller. Fat will cover faults ; this is a fact to be kept in mind in 
selecting a cow ; because good fatting qualities are not the qualities which 
the purchaser is desirous of obtaining. 

" These marks, though often seen on many good cows, should be considered 
as certain only when the veins of the perineum form, under the skin, a kind 
of net-work, which, without being very apparent, may be felt by a pressure 
on them, when the milk-veins on the belly are well developed, though less 
knotted and less prominent than in cows of the first class ; in fine, when tlie 
udder is well developed, and presents veins which are sufficiently numerous, 
though not very large. 

" There are cases where a knowledge and careful examination of the form 
and size of the mirror becomes of the greatest importance. It is well known 
that certain signs or marks of great milkers are developed only as the 
capacities of tlie animal herself are fully and completely developed by age. 
The milk-veins, for instance, are never so large and prominent in heifers and 
young cows as in old ones, and the same may be said of the udder, and the 
veins of the udder and perineum, all of which it is of great importance to 
observe in the selection of milch cows. Those signs, then, which in cows 
arrived at maturity are almost sufiicient in themselves to warrant a conclu- 
sion as to their merits as milkers, are, to a great extent, wanting in younger 
animals, and altogether in calves, of which there is often doubt whether they 
shall be raised ; and here a knowledge of the form of the mirror is'^f 
immense advantage, since it gives, at the outset, and before any expense is 
incurred, a somewhat reliable means of judging of the future milking 
capacities of the animal, or, if a male, of the probability of his transmitting 
milking qualities to his oflFspring." 

55. What Kind of Cows to Buy.-^' In buying dairy stock, tlie farmer gen- 
erally finds it for his interest to select young heifers. Tliey give the promise 
of longer usefulness. But it is often the case that older cows are selected, 
with the design of using them for the dairy for a limited period, and then 
feeding them for the butcher. In either case, it is advisable, as a rule, to 
choose animals in low or medium condition. The farmer can not ordinarily 
afibrd to buy fat; it is more properly his business to make it and to have it 
to sell. Good and well-marked cows, in poor condition, will rapidly gain in 
all flesli products when removed to better pastures and higher keeping, and 
they cost less in the original purchase." 

56. General Conclusions. — We have now devoted all the space that we can 
afibrd to the subject of cows. We have given them a large share of our 
attention, because we consider them of more importance than any other 
single branch of our domestic animals.- They not only furnish a great 
amount of food, in milk, cream, butter, cheese, and meat, when done fur- 
nishing milk, but they are the foundation of prosperity in American farming. 
" A good cow may produce a bad calf," but it is only a may-be — it does not 


hold as a rule. It is therefore very important to select good cows, and keep 
none but good cows — certainly never breed from a poor one. 

We shall now give some important facts relative to other branches of neat 
stock. And first we refer the reader to the following facts concerning bulls 
of various breeds. 

57. The Ayrshire Bull. — In comparing this with those of other breeds, it 
should be borne in mind that the Ayrshircs are not bred for beef, in their 
own country, as much as they are for dairy purposes. For working oxen, 
they are of fair quality, but not the best. For feeding purposes, they should 
be crossed with Durhams. 

" It is the opinion of good breeders, that a high-bred short-horn bull and 
a large-sized Ayrshire cow will produce a calf which will come to maturity 
earlier, and attain greater weight, and sell for more money, than a pure-bred 
Ayrshire. This cross, with feeding from tlie start, may be sold fat at two or 
three years old, the improvement being especially seen in the earlier matu- 
rity and the size." 

58. The Jersey Bull. — So far as beauty is concerned in the sexes, the 
males of the Jersey or Alderney stock have the largest share. It is a 
somewhat curious physiological fact, that the Alderney cows in this country 
produce two or three times as many bulls as heifers, so that bulls can gener- 
ally be purchased at lower prices than cows. 

"The bulls are usually very different iu character and disposition from 
the cows, and are much inclined to become restive and cross at the age of 
tmee or four years, unless their treatment is uniformly gentle and firm. In 
all portraits of Jersey bulls, they are represented as handsomer animals 
than they are generally considered by American farmers. 

59. Short-horn or Durham Bull. — Tliis breed has been more largely 
imported and bred from in the United States than any, in fact all, othere. 
It is the great beef-producing breed o^ the West, particularly in Ohio and 

" The desirable characteristics of the short-horn bull may be summed up, 
according to the judgment of the best breeders, as follows: He should have 
a short but fine head, very broad across the eyes, tapering to the nose, with 
a nostril full and prominent; the nose itself should be of a rich flesh-color; 
eyes bright and mild ; ears somewhat large and thin ; horns slightly curved 
and rather flat, well set on a long, broad, muscular neck ; chest wide, deep, 
and projecting; shoulders fine, oblique, well formed into the chine; fore 
legs short, with upper arm large and powerful ; barrel round, deep, well 
ribbed liome ; hips wide and level ; back straight from the withers to the 
setting on of the tail, but short from hip to chine ; skin soft and velvety to 
the touch ; moderately thick hair, plentiful, soft, and mossy." 

This picture gives only a fair impression of the fine form of the best 
animals of this breed. 

CO. The Dutch Bull. — The form of Dutch and Durham bulls is not unlike. 
W. W. Chenery, of Watertown, Mass., whose name has since become famous 

Seo. 4.] 



as being identified with the alarming cattle disease prevailing iu Massachu- 
setts in the summer of 1860, is one of the largest importers of the valuable 
stock known as the Dutch breed. 

61, The Hereford Bull.— This always fairly represents this good breed of 
cattle. Good, at least, for beef, and excellent for working oxen. Their 
beef rates highest of all in the London market, and the few grades which 
have been brought to New York have been higlily esteemed. The objection 
to them is, that they do not come so early to maturity, or, rather, to a salable 
condition, as the Durhams. The breeders of Herefords contend that the 
keeping that will starve Durhams will keep the Herefords in a thriving 

62. The Devon Bull. — In color and form a Devon bull is perfect ; always 
of a pure bay-red color, of medium size, and progenitor of the handsomest 
working oxen in America. The deficiency in size of the pure Devons, for 
working oxen, is made up by crossing upon larger animals. These grade 
oxen make as fine beef as any brought to the New York market. 


ross and Net Weight of Beef Cattle. — ^The ordinary 
rule of ascertaining the net weight of beef cattle 
from the live weight on the scales varies, accord- 
ing to quality, size, and age, and after all, is no rule 
at all, because it is entirely a matter of agreement 
between the parties at the time. 

It also depends upon the locality. In New York, 
the net weight of the beef in the quartere only is 
wanted. In Boston, the hide and fat are included, 
counting those products equal to one quarter of the 
beef, or, rather, calling the whole five quarters. Tliere 
the net weight of a fat bullock is estimated at 60 to 
68 lbs. of each 100 of live weight. In extra fine 
animals the per-centage is higher. 
In New York, where the hide and fat are left out of the calculation, the 
bullocks are estimated at 55 to 60 lbs. net to each 100 lbs. gross; and if the 
animal is very fine, the estimate runs from 61 to 61 lbs. net to each 100 lbs. 
gross. Extraordinary animals sometimes dress 65 or 66 lbs., and even higher, 
and ordinary and lean stock run from 55 down to 47 lbs., though not often 
below 50 lbs., or one half the live weight at home. The common practice 
at the "West is, to weigh fatted cattle some hours after feeding and a little 
exercise, and calculate the net weight at 55 lbs. per 100 of the live weight. 


64. The Lai^est Bollock— The Great Massachnsetts Steer.— The question 
of " what is the greatest weiglit of any bullock ?" we definitely answer and 
place on record in the following notices. The heaviest alive and dead was 
sold by John Sanderson, of Bernardstown, Mass., in February, 1S62, to 
Bryan Lawrence, butcher, Centre Market, New York, by whom he was 
publicly exhibited, killed, and weighed. His live weight "at home was 36 
cwt. Here, when very empty, 33 cwt. His dead weight was, fore quarters, 
743, 732—1,475 lbs. Hind quarters, 496, 502—993 lbs. Total, 2,473 
lbs., after shrinking a week. This is within 2 lbs. of 75 per cent, of live 
weight. This steer liad been kept in a small yard and stable, eating meal 
and hay two years ; was eight years old ; a cross of Durham and native 
Vermont stock. He girted back of shoulders, 10 ft. 8 in. ; forward of liips, 
11 ft. 8 in. ; hight, 6 ft. 3 in. ; length from horns to tail, 9 ft. 8 in. ; breadth 
across hips, 3 ft. 6 in. Tliis is the largest bullock of which we have any 
certain record. TVe also place upon record the weights of several other 
remarkable large bullocks. All stories of bullocks of 40 cwt. we disbelieve. 

65. The Washington Ox. — Tlie ox George "Washington was 5 years, 9 
months, and 14 days old when slaughtered, in the year 1840. 

His live weight was 3,204 lbs. 

Weight of one fore quarter 612 " 

Weight of the other fore quarter 698 " 

Weight of one hind quarter 487 " 

Weight of the other hind quarter 477 " 

2,174 lbs. of beef — 70 llis. per cwt. of lire weight. 

Measurement from button to root of tail 9 fl. 7 in. 

Girth 10 " 4 " 

Hight 5 " 9 " 

From hip to hip 2 '• 9 " 

The ox Red Jacket, killed March 5, 1851, 

Weighed alive 3,080 lbs. 

Weight of meat '. 2,114 " 

Lota, 31 per cent. 

The OX John Hancock, killed the same time, 

Weighed alive 2,910n«. 

Weight of meat 1,946J " 

Loss, 33 per cent. 

Robert L. Pell's two-year-old heifer, fatted at Pellham Farm, 30 miles up 

the Hudson, 

Weighed alive 2,000 lbs. 

Weight of beef 1,380 " 

Loss, 31 per cent. 

66. A Big Ox in Olden Time. — "We print, as we find it, the following 
extract from " Thacher's Military Journal of the Revolution," under date of 
June 24, 1779: 

" I have just had the satisfaction, with a number of gentlemen, of viewing 
a remarkably large /"at ox, which has been presented by some gentlemen in 
Connecticut to his Excellenc_v, Gen. "Washington. He is 6 ff. 7 in. high, and 
weighs on tlie hoof 3,500 lbs., the largest animal T ever beheld." 

67. The Ox Leopard. — ^An ox called "Leopard," raised and fed by Dr. 

1 ! 


"Win. Elmer, of Bridgton, N. J., was slaughtered, Feb. 24, 1832, at the age 

of 6 years and 8 months. His live weight was 3,360 lbs. Size — length from 

nose to rump, 10 ft. 6 in. ; from nose to end of tail, 15 ft. ; girth behind fore 

shoulders, 9 ft. 8 in. ; around the body, 10 ft. 9 in. ; around the brisket, 10 ft. 

3 in. ; length from shoulder to rump, 7 ft. ; along the back from liorns, 9 ft. ; 

width across the hip, 2 ft. lOi in. ; hight of fore shoulder, 5 ft. 6 in. ; behind, 

5 ft. 8 in. ; circumference of leg below the knee, 1 foot. 

68. Two Big Oxen in Pennsylvania. — We have a letter from James Stewart, 

Pennsylvania, and another from Andrew M. Frantz, giving the weight of 

two bullocks heavier than the Washington. One known as the " Lancaster 

County Ox," Mr. Stewart writes, " was owned and fed by Emanuel Landis, 

near this city ; was a lialf-bred Durham, deep red, large fore quarters, long, 

fine horns, and was over seven years old. Wm. F. Miller, of Lancaster, 

purdiased him for $800, and slaughtered him on the 22d of February, 1858. 

This ox weighed : 

Live weight 3,387 lbs. 

Net weight 2,409 " 

Weight of one fore quarter 747 lbs. 

Weight of the other fore quarter 760 " 

Weight of one hind quarter 469 " 

Weight of the other hind quarter 442 " 

2,418 lbs. 

Deduct weight of hooks for weighing 9 

Total net weight 2,409 lbs. 

" The Berks Ckiunty ox, that was butchered some years ago in Philadelpliia, 

weighed as follows : 

live weight. 3,350 lbs. 

Net weight ,... 2,388 " 

Weight of one fore quarter 7321bB. 

Weight of the other fore quarter 728 " 

Weight of one hind quarter 464 " 

Weight of the other hind quurter 464 " 

Total net weight 2,338 lbs. 

"There has long been a generous rivalry between the farmers of Berks 
and Lancaster counties in regard to which could grow the fattest and largest 
oxen. As it now stands, Lancaster is ahead, but we may look out for some- 
thing ere long greater still from Old JSerJcs, for the resources of that county 
are astonishing, as even politicians can testify. 

"There was another steer butchered in this city, in February, 1856, by 
David Killinger, owned and fed by Abram Landis, of Manheim township, 
that netted 2,108 lbs., but that weight, and greater, has been frequently 
attained in this State, and even in this county. The first two (whose weights 
I liave given) I will not say are the largest cattle ever slaughtered, even in 
Pennsylvania, but they are the largest that have ever come under my obser- 
vation, and in regard to whose weight there was no dispute. I, however, 
entirely concur with the writer in the Tribune, that there never was an ox 
fed to the weight of 4,000 lbs. gross. An animal that will weigh 613 lbs. 
more than the one butchered in this city in February last, has certainly never 
been yet produced." 


Mr. Frantz sajs the Berks County ox was fed by a man named Soetz, 
and was slaughtered, he thinks, in 18i6. If so, his weight should have been 
known here and remembered, but it was not by one of the butchers and 
others that we thought likely to know, of the many of whom we sought 
information. We liavo often heard of heavier bullocks, but lack the proof, 
as in the case below. The above figures are now matters of record, where 
they can be referred to in future. 

69. The Saratoi^a Bis Bullock» — Since writing the above, we see the fol- 
lowing in the Country Gentlcvian of May 27, 1860 : 

" The Saratoga County Fres& says that J. M. Cole, of Saratoga Springs, 
slaughtered an ox, in 1817, whose live weight was 3,520 lbs. ; dressed, 
2,567 lbs." 

Let Mr. Cole give us the vouchers. If he has made an ox of that 
weight, he has probably beaten the world, and shoidd give the world the 
proof. It wants to know certaiidy the weight of tlie heaviest bullock. 

70. Weights of the Crystal Palace Show Cattle.— The following are the net 
weights of the nine head of fat bullocks, exhibited as a show at the Crystal 
Palace. Some of them were full-blood Kontuck}' and Ohio Durhams, and 
others, grades of that bloofl. They were bought by Jim Irving, of Washing- 
ton Market, and fairly weiglied as follows: 

Tlie best pair weighed — one, 2,178 lbs. — and his quarters, 60-1 and 612 lbs. 
for the fore quarters, and 480 and 482 lbs. for the hind quarters. Tlie other 
weighed 2,066 lbs.— the fore quarters 570 and 568 lbs., and the hind ones 
470 and 458 lbs. 

Another pair weighed together 3,680 lbs. The old cow, which was 
excessively fat, weighed 1,460 lbs., dressing, it is said, 73 lbs. per cwt. Tlie 
best steer dressed 72ilb6. per cwt. The other four head weighed 2,024, 
2,003, 1,930, and 1,860 lbs. 

Forty head of Illinois grade Durhams, five and six years old, sold in 1858, 
in the New York market, averaged 22 cwt. each alive, and one hundred 
head averaged over 20 cwt. each. 

71. The liaxtun Steei". — The Ilaxtun steer was raised by E. Ilaxtun, in 
Beekman Township, Dntcliess Co., N. Y. lie was out of a cow bought from 
a drove that came from near Cleveland, Oliio, which was probably three 
fourths Durham, and a full-bred short-horn bull, of Mr. Sheaf's (Dutchess 
County) importation. The steer was called jfths Durham, part of the blood 
appearing to indicate a descent from the long-horn of the old Kentucky 
importation. Ilis color was nearly all red, having some whitish roan spots, 
and he was, notwithstanding his great size and fatness, one of the liaud- 
somest-formed fat bullocks we have ever seen, and as firm on his legs almost 
as he ever was, and was in appearance as fresh and healthy as ever, taking his 
rations regularly. His feed was 14 quarts a day of meal, made of two parts 
Indian corn and one part oats, and as much hay as he would eat. His feeding 
commenced in the fall, after he was four yeai-s old, and he was seven years 
old the spring before he was killed. Ilis weight at home, Dec. 1, 1859, was 


3,472 lbs. He was probably weighed full at that time ; bnt after a railroad 
passage of 75 miles, he was weighed here, Jan. 9, 1860, before he was filled up 
with food and water, and his fair, honest weight, as given by David Allerton, 
who weigiicd him, was 3,452 lbs. Three days afterward, weighed upon the 
same scales, by the same man, with scales carefully balanced, he weighed 
3.418 lbs. Afterward, upon two other scales, his weight was 3,419. He was 
sold Jan. 10, 1860, to Wm. Lalor, of Centre Market, for $850 ; and was 
slaughtered and dressed at Pattei'son's slaughter-house, Jan. 19, by the same 
man who dressed the Washington, and hung until Jan. 26, when the quarters 
were weighed, under the careful supervision of Barney Bartram, John Harris, 
John M. Seaman, and James L. Stewart, and in the presence of a large 
company of lookers-on, many of whom were considerably interested, having 
invested largely in the way of bets upon the net weight. 

The following was the result: fore quarters, 700 and 668 lbs. — 1, 368 lbs. ; 
the hind quarters, 482 and 469 lbs.— 951 lbs. ; total, 2,319 lbs. This was 2| 
lbs. over 67j lbs. per cwt. of the last live weight. The shrinkage was esti- 
mated at 50 lbs. ; but he was hung just the same length of time as the 
Washington, and, like him, has had his hide stuffed and form preserved, 
being, up to that time, the largest bullock ever brought to New York. The 
fatting of this steer has been one of the most perfectly successful experiments 
to produce a monstrous animal, so evenly formed and faultlessly shaped, 
that no one could say where he could be improved. 

72. Other Large Bullocks.— A pair of oxen, called the " Cayuga Prize 
Oxen," was also sold in the New York market, the same week, for $700, wliicli 
was considered remarkable ; their live weight, however, was 2,865 lbs. each ; 
they were six years old. 

The Michigan Farmer of Jan. 20, 1860, says : " We lately gave an account 
of several fat cattle which were killed in tliis city on the week before the 
New Year. The pair weiglied 6,437 lbs., or 3,218 lbs. each. The net weiglit 
was estimated at 68 lbs. per cwt." Of some others the Farmer said: "The 
actual yield of the cattle killed by William Smith, in this market, was &Q lbs. 
to the 100 lbs. of live weight, or 2,150 lbs. from 3,218 lbs. It will be seen 
by this, therefore, how those great oxen killed in the Detroit market 
approximated to what is considered the largest and fattest animal ever killed 
in the United States." 

We have a letter before us from Isaac Hubbard, of Claremont, N. H., 
who is ninety years old, but not too old to read with interest the accounts 
of these fat bullocks. He says that, seeing an account of the Haxtun 
steer, which interested him very much, induced him to give the history of 
a fat bullock fed by him twenty odd years ago. 

The calf was dropped Jan. 4, 1833, and was then estimated to weigh 100 
lbs.; Jan. 4, 1833, he weighed 874 lbs. ; Dec. 3, 1833, 1,280 lbs. ; Jan. 5, 
1835, 1,800 lbs. ; Dec. 26, 1835, 2,350 lbs.; Feb. 15, 1837, 2,910 lbs. 

In Oct., 1838, Mr. H. sold him, and he was conveyed to Hartford, Conn., 
and weighed 3,370 lbs. This steer was bought by Paran Stevens, since of 



[Chap. I. 

great hotel notoriety, and was extensively exhibited in this country ae " the 
largest ox ever seen." Perhaps some persons in this State may remember 
the exhibition of this mammoth ox. 

In 1840, this great show animal was sent to England for exhibition there, 
and, it is said, attracted much attention. From there he was taken to 
France and Belgium, and exhibited as the great bullock of the world. He 
was brought back to England and slaughtered, but his weight at the time, 
either alive or dead, was not published, but it was less in this country than 
tiiat of several whose \reights we have published. This is one of the great 
6liow bullocks which have been exhibited and advertised as weighing over 
4,000 lbs., a weight that never has, so far as we have any satisfactory records, 
yet been attained ; and although we believe that 4,000 lbs. is above the 
limit that can be attained by one of the bovine race, we would not discourage 
the efforts of those who have made noble attempts to improve this class of 
livestock, both in form and quality, and who will not be content until the 
utmost possible limit of weight is accomplished. 

The name of Mr. Hubbard's steer was " Olympus," in this country, but in 
Europe he was exhibited imder the name of " Brother Jonathan." He was 
of the " native stock," common in New Hampshire ; his color a dapple-bay 
or red, a little changeable in the sun, with white spots on the face and legs. 

It is not, however, generally profitable to feed such great bullqcks as we 
liave noticed ; but, to see what has been done, it will always be an interest- 
ing matter of reference. So will be the matter we shall give in the next 


umbers of Bntchers' Animals Annually Sold in New 
Torkt — Farmers are very justly accused of a 
neglect of statistical information in relation to the 
business upon which all their prosperity depends. 
In the very important matter of furnishing the 
cities with bullocks, the producers had no means 
of forming estimates of the needed supply, until we 
instituted reports of the cattle markets of all the prin- 
cipal cities, and particularly the city of New York, 
wliich is an enormous consumer of fresh beef. To this 
market we have devoted many years, attending almost 
every weekly market, and have given tiie farmers statis- 
tical tables of immense value to tliem. We now 
embody some of this useful statistical information, 
can stand as a table of permanent reference; and we earnestly 
it to all who are engaged in agricultural pursuits. 

where it 



Tears. Beeves. tows. Calves. Sheep. Bwine. Ann. Totals. 

18.54 169 864.... 13,131.... 68,584.... 555,479.... 252,328.... 1,059,386 

1855 185564.... 12,110... 47,969.... 588,741.... 318,107.... 1,152,491 

1856 187 057 . 12,857.... 43,081.... 462,739.... 345,911.... 1,051,645 

1857 162,243 ... 12,840.... 34,218.... 444,036.... 288,984.... 942,321 

1858 . 191874.... 10,128.... 37,675.... 447,445.... 551,479.... 1,238,601 

1859 . 205,272.... 9,492.... 48,769.... 404,894.... 399,665.... 1,068,092 
1860 226,933.... 7,144.... 39,436.... 518,750.... 323,918.... l,llli,181 

1861 222,835.... 5,749... 32,868.... 512,366.... 559,421.... 1,333,239 

1862 239,486.... 5,378... 30,465.... 484,342. ... 1,148,209. .. . 1,907,880 

1863 264,091.... 6,470.... 35,709.... 519,316. ... 1,101,617. .. . 1,927,203 

Total 2,055,219. . . . 95,299. . . . 418,774. . . . 4,938,108. . . . 5,289,639. . . . 12,797,039 

Av. pr. year . . . 205,522.... 9,530.... 41,877.... 493,811.... 528,964.... 1,279,704 


Tears. Beeves. Cows. Calves. Sheep. Swine. Totai. 

1854 3,257 253 1,315 10,682 4,852 20,369 

1855 3,565 233 922 11,322 6,117 22,069 

1856 3,597 247 828 8,898 6,650 20,224 

1857 3,120 245 658 8,539 6,557 18,119 

1858 3,680 195 724 8,604 10,605 28,809 

1859 3,947 182 841 9,709 7,686 22,365 

1860 4,364 139 758 9,976 7,229 21,465 

1861 4,285 no 632 9,853 10,758 25,637 

1862 4,518 101 574 9,138 21,664 36,000 

1863 5,079 125 687 9,987 21,185 37,062 

The increase of bullocks in this decade is 55 per cent. Cows have 
fallen off more than half, and calves nearly the same. The supply of sheep 
remains nearly stationary, but swine have increased enormously. The fol- 
lowing is the estimated number of pounds of meat, derived from slaughtered 
animals in 1863, and the wholesale value. In the estimate, cows are added 
to the bullocks, because tlie most of them, eventually, go to the butcher. 

Beeves— 270,561, av. 700 lbs. uet 189,392,700 lbs. at 9jc. per lb. net S17,513,821 75 

Veal— 35,709 calves at 75 lbs 2,678,176 " at 10c. per lb. net 267,817 50 

Sheep and lambs— 519,316, at 42 lbs.... 21,811,272 " 2,181,127 20 

Swine— 1,101,617, at 150 lbs 105,242,550 " at 6^c. per lb. net 10,740,765 75 

Total 379,124,697 lbs $30,708,535 20 

It is also very important for farmers to know where the supply comes 
from. Of 210,384 bullocks sold in 1803, the si.x following States furnished 
the respective numbers, viz. : Illinois, 118,692 ; New York, 28,985 ; Ohio, 
19,269; Indiana, 1-1,232; Michigan, 9,074; Kentucky, 0,782. As the same 
proportion holds good for all the cattle received in New York, it will be soen 
that Illinois furnishes 56i per cent. True, a good many credited to that 
State come from Iowa, Missouri, and other States. 

The proportion of hogs from Illinois is probably greater than upon beef 
cattle. The great bulk of pork from the hogs slaughtered here is packed 
and sent to other places for consumi:)iion ; large quantities of it to Eurojic. 
A small portion of the beef is packed and sent abroad. The great bulk of 
it, and all the veal and nearly all of the sheep, and a vast quantity besides 
that comes in ready dressed from the country, goes to furnish fresh meat to 
the cities of New York and Brooklyn, three small cities in New Jersey, and 
several towns within fifty miles, ships in port, and most of our armed ships 
and forts and soldiers on the coast between Hampton Roads and Key West. 


Estimated average price of beef cattle per net pound each year, 185-1—63 : 
1854, cents full; 1855, 10 cents; 1S56, 9i cents nearly; 1857, lOi cents 
nearly; 1858, Si cents nearly; 1859, 9 cents; 1860, 8 cents full ; 1861, 7 J 
cents; 1862, 7§ cents ; 1863, 9i cents. Up to March, 186-1, prices liave ranged 
troiii 9 to 16 cents a pound net, which was higher than before since 1857. 

During 1863, the live-weight price of corn-fed hogs ranged from -1 to 7 
cents per pound. In February, 1864, it reached 8^ and 9 cents per pound, 
which was tlie highest price for "Western stock ever attained. 

That all who read this page may see what an immense interest is involved 
in the live-stock trade of the country with New York city, we add the fol- 
lowing calculation of number of pounds of meat and estimated value: 

cossrjm-iox or ten teah-s — 1854-1863, 
Beeves— 2,160.518 hc.^ av. 700 lbs. net. ..1,505.302,600 lbs. at 9 cents per lb. net. . $135,482,034 

Calves— 418,7(4 head av. 75 lbs. net 3I,40K,050 " 3.140,8(15 

SbeepandlanibB-^,938,108hea(lav.421bs. 207,390,530 '■ 20,73y,li:):i 
Swine— 5,289,0.39 head av. 125 lbs 001,204,800 " at 39,672,2«8 

Total 2,400,305,980 lbs $199,034,7|;0 

Average per annum for the ten years 240,530,598 " 19,903, 173 

Farmers, look at these figures. They teach you an important lesson ; one 
well worthy of being placed upon this permanent record, to remind you and 
your children of the great importance of the live-stock interest of the country. 
You sec by the tables the rapid increase of the trade, and the enormous sum 
that it amounts to in ten years. Lest you should be confused by the sum in 
numerical figures, let us repeat it in words. Two billions four hundred and 
five millions three hundred and sixty-five thousand nine hundred and 
eighty-six pounds of meat, amounting to one hundred and ninety-nine 
millions thirty-four thousand seven hundred and eighty dollars. This is 
the sum that New York city has disbursed to the farming interest for fen 
years' supply of meat, derived frojn the slaughter of twelve millions seven 
hundred and ninety-seven thousand and thirty-nine animals. 

These statistics enable us to realize the vast resources of America. T!ie 
country is now feeding a million of men in the army, fighting for freedom, 
full rations of meat, and sending nearly two millions a year of animals to 
the city shambles of New York, for which the city is sending back to the 
country twentj^ millions of dollars. 

This is the greatest meat-eating country in the world ; it produces all that 
it consumes and a great surplus to send abroad. 

74. Cattle Transportation.— Nearly all the stock sold in the New York 
market is transported upon railway cars. "We assume that the beeves for 
ten years' supply have paid a tariff of $10 a head average to railroads, 
making the sum of $21,505,180; calves at fifty cents a head, $209,387; 
sheep at seventy-five cents, $3,703,681 ; hogs at $1 25 each, $6,612,048. 
Total $32,030,296, as the estimated amount paid for the transportation of 
animals butchered in New York for ten years. 

Improvement is needed in transportation. Animals arc forced to stand 
without food or water two or three days, or as long as their tired legs will 

Seo. 5.] 



sustain them, and when they fail, as sometimes they do, the fainting creature 
falls and is trampled to death. 

We must have an improvement in cattle-cars. It certainly would not be 
difficult to construct them so that cattle should stand with heads to one side, 
where water could be given them in a trough by means of hose ; and if this 
can not be done, it must be made a criminal oifense to keep the animals on 
a car more than 30 hours without water. In fact, it would be better for all 
parties if the number were limited that a car should contain, and that in no 
case should the stock remain on the cars over 30 hours, without being 
unloaded, rested, fed, and watered. Tlie present practice is a loss to owners 
and an injury to consumers, by making the beasts feverish and unhealthy, 
besides being an outrageous act of cruelty to animals. The whole commu- 
nity is interested, and should cry out against the wicked practice, which is 
enough to make humanity shudder. 

75. Comparative Measurements of CattlCi — Inquiries are often made in 
regard to the relative size of diiferent breeds of cattle. It is not easy to give 
a very definite answer to questions of this kind ; but as several of the leading 
breeds of this country were derived from England, where they are bred in 
greater numbers than they are here, an idea of their comparative size may 
be had from certain measurements taken of prize animals at the English 
shows. We give the following tables in reference to Short-horns, Herefords, 
and Devons, which toolj prizes at the shows ,of the Royal Agricultural 
Society, in 1858 and 1859. The first was prepared for the Society by Mr. 
Robert Smith. 

CLASS. Avel 

Short HORKa. j rs 

Aged bulls 4 

Yearling bulls 1 

Bull calves 

Cows 3 

Two-year-old heifeiB.2 
Yearlings 1 


Aged bulls 4 

Yearling bulls 1 

Bull calves 




CLASS. Averi 

Hehefoeds. yra- 

Cows 7 

Two-year-old heifers. 2 
Yearlings 1 

Average Girth. 


Aged bulls 3 6 7 5 

YearUng bulls 1 -6^ 6 2 

Bull calves 8| 5 2 

5 8 3 Cows 6 2i 6 Dj 

104 7 0} Two-year-old heifers. 2 6 € 10 

lOJ 5 ll| Yearlings 1 7} 6 1 

The next table was furnished by Mr. Thos. Duckhara, the editor of the 
"Herd-Book of Hereford Cattle." As far as it goes, it comprises measure- 
ments of Short-horns and Herefords, which received prizes at the Warwick 
show that year, the rank of the awards having been according to the order 
observed in the table. 

CLASS. Averi 

Shoet-hokss. ys- 

Aged bulls 4 


Yearling bulls. 

Bull calves 

Cows 4 

Average Girth. 

CLASS. Averag 

Herefof.ds. }■"• 

AgedbuUs 2 

" 4« 



Yearling buUs . 
Bull calves . . . , 


Average Girth. 



[Chap. I. 

76. The Improvement in Breeds and Weig^hts or Cattle. — What has raised 
the average weight of beef cattle from 500 to 800 lbs., and some individuals 
up to 3,600lbs. ? "What has raised the crops of corn to double their former 
yield, and in several instances produced over 190 bushels of corn to>the acre 
— that was in Kentucky ; but in the State of !New York whole lields have 
averaged 100 bushels. In Connecticut, 13i bushels of ears of corn have been 
I)roduced upon half an acre, at an expense for culture and harvest of less 
than $3. What lias induced men to root up old orchards of natural fruit, 
" five to the pint," and plant pippins, bald wins, greenings, russets, etc., some 
of which have been sold from $8 to $20 a barrel, and retailed at a guinea 
a dozen? What has induced ingenious men to devote the best energies of 
their minds to inventing plows, harrows, drills, reaping-machines, and every 
other implement of husbandry, while every class of domestic animals has 
also been improved — neat cattle probably the most of all? 

The answer is, the publication of just such facts as we are now giving, 
which tend to show what has been done by some men, and may be done by 
others. This encourasres us to continue our labor. 


electing Calves for Rearing. — Use judgment in 
selecting such heifer calves as are to be reared. 
Select only those whose mothers are good milkers, 
and whose sires have come from good milking 
stock ; at the same time, the calf itself should have 
characteristics that indicate an aptitude to develop 
good milking qualities, viz. : small, fine head, ratlier long 
in the muzzle; bright eyes; tliin, tapering neck; small, 
well-shaped legs ; long body ; large hind quarters, set wide 
behind ; soft skin ; tine hair — the color of which is immate- 
rial ; and, above all, the milk-mirror or udder veins should 
be large and well developed. 

The raising of bull calves for breeders had better be left 
to those who have time and means to devote their attention 
to it, who procure the best animals to begin with. It would be no loss to 
the country, were the numerous specimens of scrub bulls, too often seen, 
condemned to perpetual exile. 

But there is no reason why a portion of the male calves, at least, should 
not be reared as bullocks, either for the team or the butcher; and it is 
important that such as are reserved for this purpose should possess certain 
points indicative of future excellence, viz.: well-shaped head; small cars; 
short, thick neck; deep brisket; broad chest and shoulders; fine bone; long 


body, well rounded behind the shoulders ; straight back ; wide loins ; full 
quarters ; tail thin and tapering ; skin soft, and not too thin. 

It is too often the case that animals are selected for rearing from being of 
pretty color — that takes the fancy of some member of the family — or the 
calf of some pet cow of the dairy-maid, without attention being paid to its 
promise of excellences. Not unfreqnently valuable calves are fattened for 
veal, simply because their color is unpleasing to the eye. 

This is about the most important branch of the stock-raiser's business. 
Too many persons pursue the careless mode of the person who wrote the 
following item : 

" In the spring of 1858 my two cows had bull calves, which I determined 
to raise for sale, and so gave them a good chance to grow, adding an extra 
in the shape of a handful of barley meal, with their feeds of milk. They 
grew finely, or rather Bobby did, for Billy, taking a sudden dislike to sour 
milk, had rather slim rations for the last six weeks befoi-e weaning. I told 
him he might starve if he liked, and took no special pains to humor his 
fancies. In September I had an offer of $6 for Bobby, and concluded to 
let him go, but the buyer was behind time about two Aveeks, and thought 
the additional keeping worth nothing, so I did not turn him off. So, of 
course, Bobby was kept, and grew up to propagate the race of Bob calves." 

78. Calves — Give them Sheltert — It is almost impossible to winter calves 
without shelter ; if they survive the winter, they are mere skeletons, and 
have to be lifted up before spring, and never make anything but poor, raw- 
boned, unprofitable stock. Sheep are many times allowed to pick up what 
they can get for half the winter; but the dead lambs, and probably dead 
sheep, that lie scattered over the fields, tell the profit of such a course. 
When protected, all food not required to maintain the natural waste of the 
system goes toward increasing the growth of the animal. To obtain perfect 
form, animals should be kept continually growing until they arrive at 
maturity. They are often turned out in the spring so poor that it requires 
half the summer to make them as good as they were the fall before — a loss 
of three quarfeis of the year iii the growth of the animal. A grazier lately 
said to us, in speaking of such a lot of cattle that he bought, "It took the 
whole summer to soak their hides loose, so that they could begin to grow. 
They seemed as hard and dry as a pair of old boots, and in some spots as 
destitute of hair." 

79. Training SteerSi — At the Maine State Fair, a boy of fifteen years, 
from the town of Woodstock, had a pair of three-year-old steers, whicli 
obeyed him as an obedient boy will his parents. By a motion of his hand 
they would go forward, halt, and return, go to the right or left, kneel down, 
and perform other things, much to the surprise of some older farmers, who 
are in the habit of putting the brad through the hide. At a New York 
State Fair there was a perfect Barey of an ox-tanier, wlio practices breaking 
steers for farmers, and as he never treats them inhumanly, he soon has them 
under perfect control, and as bidable as well- trained children. 


80. Unruly AnimalSi — As a general rule, our domestic animals arc never 
unruly, cxcej)! wlicn taught to be so. For instance, some persons, in turning 
stock from one Held to another, only let down a few of tlie top rails or bars, 
and force the animals to jump over. Too lazy to put up as well as to let 
down, they leave the gap lialf closed, as a temptation to the stock to jump 
back again. A few practical lessons of this kind make stock unruly. Care- 
lessness in regard to putting up fences when thrown down, or in repairing 
weak spots, confirms the habit. A writer says his practice has always been 
to teach his cows, calves, sheep, and hogs to go through or under, rather 
tlian over, the bars or fences, always leaving a rail or bar up at the top. 
Taught this way, they never think of jumping, and he has never been 
troubled with unruly animals, even when his fences were low. 

81. Kindness to Brutcsi — No man can afford to be unkind to his domestic 
animals, because animals which are treated tlie most kindly arc the most 
gentle and obedient, and also thrive the best; hence, no one can afford to 
use them unkindly. By kindness, mingled with firmness, the most ferocious 
animals are subdued, and it is vain to suppose that the same means would 
not be eflectnal in training domestic animals. Surel}', no one should degrade 
himself by continuing a practice wliich is both unprofitable and inhuman — 
a practice that makes man the brute instead of the quadruped. There is no 
economy in half starving any stock through the winter, and causing them to 
take all the storms without any shelter ; but, on the contrary, it is a clear 
waste and loss to the owner. 

82. Shelter for Cattlet — Next to the necessity of an adequate supply of 
food for stock, comes the iinjwrtance of shelter. It needs no argument to 
prove the truism that animals can not live without food; and it is just as 
certain that our domestic stock, artificially susceptible to the storms and 
changes of our Northern climate, can not thrive without proper shelter. It 
seems now to be well settled, that a due degree of warmth is equivalent, in 
a measure, to food ; and Ave all know that an entire abandoii to ease and 
comfort, while in a state of rest — a perfect freedom from apprehension of 
any kind, which may arise from a lack of food, or from exposure, or any 
other cause — is neccssarj' to the maximum of thrift or usefulness. 

On old, improved, rich lands, it would be policy in the farmer to stable or 
yard his cattle and horses during the whole year ; but I should prefer yarding 
in the summer season, as more air and room for exercise would be allowed, 
both of which would be conducive to the health of the animals. 

One acre of land, in good condition, sown to corn, and cut and fed from 
the time it begins to tassel iintil it begins to glaze, will keep six head of 
cattle during the time, and perhaps more — say two montiis — while it would 
have taken six acres of pasture to keep them the same length of time. 

On farms where the pasture is generally the roughest, poorest part of the 
farm, and that whicii could not be applied as profitably to other purposes — 
on such lands the cattle must be allowed to get their own living in summer. 

Tlic above are excerpta from several excellent essays in the Genesee 


Fanner, and might have been much more extended, only that we have a 
great many other good things to glean from other sources. 

83. Straw for Cattlei — Mr. Johnson says, in a letter to the Genesee 
Farmer : " You say that I put straw in my boxes for my cows. This is not so. 
No man ever saw me feed straw to cattle, at least for the last twenty -five years. 
K they choose, they can eat the straw spread out for litter, but I never 
compel them to eat straw. I know cattle can be fatted on grain and straw, 
but I don't think so profitably as part grain and part hay, or part oil-cake 
and part hay. Grass is the natural food of sheep and cattle ; and hay made 
from grass, if properly made, puts on fat, even if very little else is fed. I 
am satisfied that either cows or fatting cattle do much better in yards, with 
auijile sheds and plenty of straw for clean, dry beds. I can not feed any 
kind of stock profitably unless they have such beds." 

84. Wintering Cattle. — There is yet a good deal of wisdom to be learned 
upon this subject, even by those whose talk is of bullocks, and particularly 
in wintering calves. The one great error is in neglecting them in autumn, 
after the frost has destroyed the 'sweetness of the grass, and allowing them 
to commence getting poor before winter feeding is commenced. Tliere is no 
error more fatal to success than such neglect. It is often the foundation of 
disease that the animal never recovers from. Tliere is no condition so good 
for an animal going into winter quarters as a thriving fatness; and if that 
can be kept up till mid-winter, the danger of starvation upon very light 
feed in the spring is greath' diminished. It is one of the worst things in all 
farm economy to neglect feeding stock in the fall, because it is not yet time 
to begin to fodder. You had better begin in July, if your pasture fails, 
so that your animals begin to lose flesh. All that is saved of fodder in the 
fall, iipon the plea that "caltle can shift a wliile longer," exactly verifies the 
old saw about " saving at the spigot and wasting at the bung." 

85. Feeding Pumpkinst — A subscriber sends a long communication against 
feeding pumpkins to cows. The writer's reasoning is not entirely sound, and 
does not agree with our own experience and observation. As a general rule, 
we are quite sure that pumpkins increase rather than diminish the quantity 
of milk ; and instead of making neat stock grow poor, we have fattened 
large numbers of cattle on pumpkins alone. There is one suggestion in our 
correspondent's letter, however, which may be worthy of attention. He 
refers to the fact that the seeds of pumpkins have a decided diuretic (urine- 
producing) eflect upon the human organs, and that if they have the same 
eflect upon cows, the excessive flow of urine must necessarily reduce the 
flow of the milky fluid. He advises that when pumpkins are fed, the seeds 
should be taken out. The idea is plausible, and worth being acted on. 

86. Keeping Stocli Warm, and Variety of Food. — Man craves a variety of 
food ; that is, a variety of substances, either one of which would sustain life, 
but would not be satisfactory. Nature demands the variation, and the mix- 
ing together tlie several substafices. Why ? Simply because no one will 
give all the elements that go to make up the animal economy. One article 


furnishes phosphate for bones, which another article is destitute of, yet it 
may contain matter tliat will clothe the bones with muscle. Food that con- 
tains neither fat nor sugar will be found sufficient to keep up the animal 
heat. Food that contained all the elements of bone, muscle, fiber, fat, and 
heat-producing qualities, might be so concentrated as to be unhealthy. 

A man fed upon pemmican, would have a disposition to eat straw, husks, 
and twigs, or gnaw the bark from trees, to get something to distend the 
stomach and enable it to perform its functions healthily. Let this be thought 
of in feeding domestic animals. It will furnish an easy rule for your 
guidance. Judge them by yourself, and act accordingly ; you will find it 
an easy and sure road to success. We do not for animals, quadruped or 
biped, recommend a variety of food at the same meal — only a change from 
time to time, so as to give variety, and consequently all the elements neces- 
sary to produce growth. 

Never neglect to give your cattle water until you learn to do without it 
yourself, and never ofier them drink where you would vomit if compelled 
to slake your own tliiret. 

Never leave a horse, a cow, a sheep, out in a cold winter storm, until you 
arrive at that condition of unfeelingness that you could endure it yourcelf. 
When you think 3-ou could find comfortable shelter under a common rail 
fence, you may leave your cattle there. No domestic animal can ever reach 
the highest state of perfection its nature is capable of unless always kept in 
a healthy, growing condition, in an equable climate, or in warm shelter if 
the inhabitant of a cold one. 

Farmers do not i)ay sufficient attention to the warmth of their stock, but 
Buflor them to roam about in the open air, exposed to the inclement weather. 
The amount of exercise is another most important point to attend to. The 
more an animal moves about, the quicker it will breathe, and the more 
starch, gum, sugar, fat, and other respiratory elements it must have in its 
food ; and if au additional quantity of these substances be not given to 
supplj' the increased demand, the fat and other parts of the bodv will be 
drawn upon, and the animal will become thiimer ; also, as before observed, 
every motion of the body produces a corre-sponding destruction of the mus- 
cles which produce that motion. It is therefore quite evident that the more 
the animal moves about, the more of the heat-producing and flesh-forming 
principle it must receive in its food. Ilence we sec the propriety of keepino' 
our cattle in sheds and yards, and not suffering those (particularly which 
wc intend to fatten) to rove about, consuming more food, and wasting away 
more rapidly the various tissues of the body already formed, and making it 
more expensive and difficult to fatten them. 

87. Fattrnin;; Cattle upon Hay. — Speaking upon this subject, a committee 
of the Massachusetts Board of Agriculture, of which John Brooks and Paoli 
Lathrop are members, remark : 

" Fattening cattle in winter upon hay alone is a resort of many farmer?, 
and where hay is plenty and distant from market, the practice is not iucon- 


sistent with economy. If well attended, good animals consuming four per 
cent, of their live weight of good hay daily, will gain daily two pounds of 
flesh. Suppose the flesh gained to be worth 16 cents, it will be equal to $8 
a ton for the haJ^ The better practice, however, is to give only three per 
cent, of the live weight of the animal in hay daily, and an equivalent for 
the other one per cent, in Indian meal or roots. The gam would be greater 
for the same cost of food." 

Another remark worth quoting is the following : 

"The best age for feeding cattle for beef is from four to eight years. 
Young growing cattle may be fattened, but it will require more food in pro- 
portion, and longer time." 

88. How to Feed Roots. — There seems to be much diversity of opinion as 
to the value of turnips, carrots, etc., for feeding. One man feeds his hogs a 
great amount of them, but neglects to provide a bed secure from the intru- 
sion of cold winds and snow, and then wonders they do not grow ; or feeds 
a cow four bushels per day, and wonders she does not fat. How could she ? 
She is almost physicked to death, and her urinary organs are injured by 
over-exertion ; and although she is thoroughly littered with straw, still her 
feet are in the water ; and when she lies down, her side is wet. 

After many trials in a similar way, many have come to the conclusion 
that root feeding is an unprofitable business in our climate. If hogs must 
sleep in snow-banks, give thetn corn by all means, and give them plenty of 
it. If cattle can not be stabled, or kept so sheltered that they may be dry, 
then roots will not give one half the return they would under a judicious 
system of management. 

After many trials of fattening sheep and horned cattle, and feeding store 
stock of all kinds with roots, I came to the conclusion that they are all valu- 
able when properly fed witli liay and grain, but that their relative value to 
grain is often overrated in tliis country of cheap corn. Roots, unless cooked, 
aie not economical food for swine. 

The great error in relation to feeding roots is, that they are too much fed 
to the exclusion of grain. A farmer lias shoats to winter, or horned cattle 
to fatten ; he first feeds his turnips, carrots, beets, small potatoes ; next his 
corn or meal. This is wrong. The corn should be fed from the first. A 
dozen shoats of 100 lbs. eacli would profitably receive a bushel per day of 
roots, if cooked with corn. A fattening ox should have one busliel, or not 
over two, per day, with six or eiglit quarts of meal. Cows should have one 
half bushel per day, whether being milked or not. That amount will bring 
them out, iu the spring, fat and ready to do good service at the pail, provided, 
of course, that they have hay and stalks in due proportion. Calves and 
yearlings should always have one fourth bushel per day, with a very small 
allowance of grain. 

The above is partly from the Stoeh Joui'nal, and the following from the 
Workijig Farmer j both of wliich are good authority. 

We beg again to remind our readers, particularly those who are engaged 


in dairy and etock farming, to appropriate a full aniouiit of land to root- 
growing. Carrots, beets, turnips, parsneps, may all be raised witli protit 
wherever stock is to he fed. For horses, carrots arc invaluable. For milch 
cows, tliey not only furnish a milk of superior flavor, butter of fine color and 
odor, but, when used as a portion of tlieir food, they guarantee a healthful 
condition. Tlie power of the pectic acid of the carrot to gelatinize all veg- 
etable matter held in solution in the stomach, puts its contents in such a 
condition that the peristaltic motion of the intestines can manage it. Flat- 
ulence is prevented, and thorough digestion secured. The dung of the 
horse fed partly on carrots, never contains tlie undecomposed shell of the 
oat, nor large amounts of starch unappropriated ; and it is for this reason 
tliat a bushel of oats and a bushel of carrots will do more for the horse than 
two bushels of oats ; and not because the carrot contains as much flesh- 
making material as the oat, but because it causes all the flesh-making ma- 
terial of the oat to be appropriated, instead of being voided witii the excretia. 
For cows and oxen, otiier roots may occasionally be substituted with profit, 
as variety to all animals is pleasing in tlieir food ; and no one root should 
be so continuously used. Since the introduction of pulping machines, pulped 
roots mixed with cut hay, cut straw, and other cheap material, add much to 
the economy of the f;irm as well as to tlie licalth of the cattle. 

89. Feeding Linseed and fotton-seed Oil-fake. — Never having had per- 
sonal experience enough in feeding oil-cake, having always preferred corn- 
meal, to give an opinion which we would ask others to rely upon, we select 
the following from a lecture by Prof. Yoelcker, before the meeting of the 
council of the Royal Agricultural Society of England, in June, 1S60. It is 
worthy of attention from all cattle-feeders. lie says : 

" It is not my object, in giving a practical turn to the lecture to-day, to 
record any experiments of my own, or in any way to presume to teach the 
feeder of stock in what way he may best expend his money in the puichase 
of food, but I shall endeavor simply to give to the practical man some indi- 
cations whereby I hope he will be enabled to form for himself a trustworthy 
opinion respecting the relative value of dilferent cakes, and likewise what is 
perhaps of more iin})ortance to him, to introduce some remarks which will 
enable Iiim to distinguish a good from a bad cake ; and in conclusion, shall 
allude briefly to the various substances with which oil-cakes are at the pres- 
ent time often largely adulterated. 

90. Fat iu Food< — "Let me first point out to you some peculiarities in 
the composition of oil-cakes. A reference to their composition is necessary 
to the understanding tlie remarks which will follow. I would then observe, 
that what ciiaracterizes oil-cakes, distinguishing them from all other articles 
of food ])re-eminently, is the large amount of oil that is left in the cakes, 
obtained by expression of the oil-seeds. If you glance at the diagram (see 
table on page 71), you Avill find that they contain a considerable quantity of 
oil — from C to 12 per cent. ; and in some instances, as in the decorticated 
cotton-cake, even 16 per cent, of oil. I may observe at once that the value 


of oil-cake in a very great measure depends upon the amount of oil which is 
left in the cake. And I may further say, that the tendency of the manufac- 
turer at the present day is to produce an inferior description of cake, inas 
much as improved machinery enables him to sr^ueeze out more oil than 
formerly, and thus to render the refuse less fattening, less valuable to the 
feeder of stock. I am very much inclined to believe that the oil is by far 
the most valuable constituent of all oil-cakes. I am aware that it was the 
fashion, not many years ago, to measure the feeding properties and even the 
fattening qualities of articles of food by the amount of nitrogenous or flesh- 
forming matters ; but these views are not supported by any practical 
experiments, nor, indeed, by the every-day experience that we liavc respect- 
ing not only human, but cattle food. We pay more for food rich in starch, 
mucilage, and matters capable of producing fat, than we pay for food which, 
like bean-meal, is extremely rich in nitrogenous matter, but which does not 
produce so much butcliers' meat. It is a matter of much importance to the 
farmer to know how much he gets back for the money he expends in the 
purchase of food. I have no hesitation in saying that more money is made 
by the purchase of food rich in oil, starch, or sugar, than in the purchase 
of food which contains an excess of nitrogenous matters. 

91. Flesh hi Food. — "Still, we ought not to leave unnoticed that the 
flesh-forming matters are very important indeed, and that oil-cakes are 
peculiarly rich in them. In one sense they are perhaps most essential — per- 
haps even more essentially necessary than the other constituents of food 
which produce fat, or are employed in the animal economy to keep up the 
animal heat. They are more important in this sense ; whereas the animal or- 
ganization has the power to make fat from gum, sugar, nmcilage, and even 
from young cellulose or young vegetable fiber, it has not the power of making 
a particle of flesh. Unless, therefore, food is given to animals which contains 
ready-made flesh, an animal can not grow, and the other constituents of food 
remain unavailable. It is in this sense that the nitrogenous matters of food 
are extremely valuable ; but in a purely practical sense they are not so val- 
uable as the oil, starch, or sugar of food, because by spending a certain amount 
of money in food, we do not get so great a return in the shape of butchers' 
meat by purchasing these flesh-forming matters as by purchasing feeding 
substances rich in oil or starch. However, in speaking of the relative value 
of the various constituents, especially tlie oily and the flesh-forming constit- 
uenis, we are not to overlook that the quantity of nitrogenous matter which 
is not applied for tlie formation of flesh, passes through the animal, and is 
ol)tained again in the dung, with the exception of a small quantity tliat 
escapes by evaporation through the skin or through the lungs. A certain 
quantity of nitrogenous food evaporates through the skin, or with the per- 
spiration ; but by far the largest proportion, according to some experiments, 
nineteen twentieths, of the flesh-forming or nitrogenous matters of food are 
found again in the dung ; according to otliers the amount is seven eighths. 
But, speaking in round numbers, I think we are not far wrong iii saying that 


we may fairly expect tliree fourtlis of tlie nitiogcuized matters of oil-cake back 
again in the mamire ; .iiid periiaps we are safe, likewise, in asserting tliat 
fully one lialf of tlie money valne of rape and the best cotton cakes is ob- 
tained back again in tlie manure. So we must not put down these constit- 
uents, which arc called nitrogenous, as useless, because they alone do not 
produce much butchers' meat ; nor must we estimate the value of oil-cake 
entirely by tlie increase in the live weight of cattle fed upon the cake, but 
also, and chieflv, I believe, by the increased value of the manure which is 
l)r()duced througli the instrumentality of oil-cake. 

92. Bone in Foodi — " I will now direct attention to the inorganic matters 
or ash of oil-cakes. These inorganic matters may be called bone material ; 
for the ash of oil-cakes is particularly rich in i)hosi>hates of lime, or the ma- 
terial of which the greater \>a.i-t of the bone is composed. Now, the large 
proijortion of oil ; next, the large pri-yjtortion of flesh-forming matters; and 
third, a considerable proportion of bone material are characteristics that 
confer a i)articular value upon oil-cake, either directly as food, or indirectly 
as useful material for increasing the value of farm-yard manure. For let me 
observe, that oily matters and substances tliat make butchers' meat arc the 
most valuable constituents in all feeding materials, and therefore also in an 
oil-cake. On the other hand, the flcsh-forining constituents and the bone- 
forming materials — in other words, the nitrogen and the phosphates of tlie 
cake — are the two most valuable fertilizing constituents. "\Vc have thus in 
oil-cakes, in a concentrated state, materials that produce butchers' meat, 
and, at tlie same time, yield the most valuable fertilizing constituents. There 
is no other description of food which unites these useful properties. 

93. LiilSfFll-fakei — " You are all aware we disiinguisii chieily the follow- 
ing kii\(ls of linseed-cake : English cake, American cake, and foreign cakes. 
Among foreign cakes there are various descriptions. There is the Baltic, 
the Marseilles, the Naples cake, and various others. We have here an ex- 
cellent specimen of good English cake. The English cake is made now of 
two qualities, thick and thin cake ; the latter is made in imitation of the 
American barrel cake, of which specimens are before you. You observe 
how closely the tliin English cake resembles the American bari'el cake. The 
latter has gained much favor, and therefore the manufacturers in England 
liave found it to their advantage to imitate the form in which it is sold. In 
the first place, notice that the American cake occasionally is as bad as 
English and foreign cakes. It is not every description of American cake 
which is good, but generally speaking, as it comes into the market, espe- 
cially the barrel cake, it is of a very superior character. But the question 
whether it is generally superior to the English cake or not, is one which is 
not very readily decided ; you may get English cake quite as good, if "not 
be' tor, than tlie American cake. 

'• Soiue years ago it was the fashion to buy the English cake in preference 
to any oilier, but it is now the fashion to buy the American barrel cake. I 
can only account for this by the fact that the English cake, being produced 


in good quality, was rapidly consumed; the American cake was usually 

scut in a very damaged condition to this country, coming as it did in bat^s • 
our sharp American friends very soon found that they must send their cake 
here in a good condition. They dried it previously to sending it over and 
imported it in barrels, and this improved condition of the American cake 
greatly increased its reputation, which has been kept up ; so that at the pres 
out time in most markets, American cake, especially the barrel cake, fetches 
a iiigher price than the English. But a reference to the diagram will show 
you tliat there is no essential diiFerence between good English cake and 
good American ; indeed, if anything, the advantage is in favor of the speci- 
mens of English cake. The difference is extremely small. There is the 
same quantity of oil in both cases. The proportion of flesh-forming matters 
is rather larger in the English than in the American. There is the same 
amount of ash in both. Tlie proportion of sand hardly amounts to one pey 
cent, in tlie English cake, and in the American it is only a half per cent. 
Tliese differences are extremely small and unimportant, so that you may 
get, and often do get, as good English cake as American. And occasion- 
ally, also, you get bad American cakes ; but on the whole, the exporters 
of American cake are very jealous as to the kind of article they send to this 
country, especially if they go to the expense of packing it in barrels. 

94-. Cotton-CakCi — " We distinguish now principally two kinds of this cake 
• — the one made of the whole seed, and the otlier of the shelled seed. The 
difference in the two qualities of cake will at once become intelligible by 
an examination of tlie seeds, or the raw materials from which the cakes are 
made. The decorticated or shelled cake is made of the kernel of the cotton 
seed ; the whole cake, in which we recognize an abundance of the husk, is 
made of the entire seed ; and inasmuch as the cotton seed contains full half 
its weight, and some descriptions contain as mucli as 60 per cent, of the hard 
husk, we must not expect that the cake made of tlie whole seed should be 
60 valuable as the decorticated cake. There are several specimens of cotton- 
cake on the table. There is very little value in the husk itself; tlie difference 
in the two kinds of cotton-cake, then, arises from the different mode in which 
they are made. The one, the decorticated cake, is made from the kernel ; 
the other kind is made from the whole seed. The difference in the compo- 
sition of the two kinds of cake is very great. The decorticated cotton-cake 
contains 16 per cent, of oil (more than any other description of cake), while 
the whole-seed cake contains only 6 per cent. The proportion of albuminous 
or flesh-forming matters in the decorticated cake amounts to 41 per cent. • 
in the whole-seed cake it is only 23 per cent, or just one half. So with 
respect to the other constituents, the proportion of woody fiber is very much 
larger in the whole-seed cake than in the other. The husk in the whole- 
seed cake for a long time was a great impediment to the general use to 
which cotton-cake is now applied in this country. I remember when tlie 
first cargoes of cotton-cake came into England, before the decorticated 
cotton-cake was known; trials were made of it, which proved quite unsuc- 


cessfiil. People (lid not like it at all, and I believe the cotton-cake would 
never have been extensively used if it had not been for the invention of a 
very useful machine, ])atented in America, by means of which the hard 
husks can be removed from tlie kernel. The use of this machine gives us a 
superior oil and a superior cake. The cot;on-seed oil made from the kernel 
alone is a very useful anicle, and so is the cake, whereas tlie oil expressed 
from the whole seed is dark brown in color, and can not be used except for 
the commonest piirjioscs for which oil is employed. The difference in the 
value of the two descriptions of cake is so great, that I almost think two 
tuns of the oil<'ake, made of the whole seed, do not go further than one tun 
of the best decorticated cotton-seed cake. Moreover, there is a certain 
danger in using the whole-seed cake. Several cases of so-called poisoning 
have been brought under my notice within the last year or two. Animals 
that have freely partaken of tlie whole-seed cake have died suddenly, and 
people have imagined that there was something injurious in the husk; but 
examination has shown that the effect produced is very much like that which 
is occasionally produced in the case of boys who die from inflammation of 
the bowels in countries where cherries are very abundant. Being very 
greedy, and eating the cheri-ies with the stones, they get a stoppage of the 
bowels, and so die from inflammation. There is nothing poisonous in the 
husk of the cotton-seed, and when given judiciously, no injury will result; 
but if aninuils are supplied with an unlimited quantity of dry food with the 
whole seed, ihere is indeed a danger. The hard husk is indigestible, and 
may roll togetlier in sucii large masses that inflammation of the bowels will 
ensue. There is no such danger, however, in the use of decorticated cotton- 
cake. The decorticated cake occurs of various degrees of qualify. And 
allow me to observe, with respect to all kinds of cake, that not only the 
composition, but, even in a higher degree, the condition of the cake, deter- 
mines in a great measure its value. I have here a specimen which you 
would hardly recognize as of the same description as another specimen also 
on the table, of a very beautiful character; it is the same kind of cake, only 
it is in a bad condition. I say, then, the condition of a cake determines 

95. Condition of f ake> — "Some time ago I was very much gratified in 
finding what great care Mr. Stratton, of Eroad Ilinton, a celebrated sliort- 
horn breeder, takes in selecting the very best of American barrel cake for 
his stock. "We often forget that animals have appetites as we have, and that 
they like food in a good condition better than food in a bad one. The com- 
position of two samples of the same food may not vary much, yet the prac- 
tical effect produced by them may vary exceedingly. There is nothing 
remarkable in this, for we know that if we get good, wholesome bread, which 
is one or two days old, we do well upon it ; but if it remains in a damp 
cellar and gets moldy, stale, and moist, it loses its fine flavor, and in this 
condition may do us harm. So it is with stale, Tuoldy cakes. Animals 
never do well on very old cakes. In examining, therefore, the different 


cakes, we ought to examine particularly their condition. I allude especially 
to tlie examination of cotton-cake, because every pierson has the means of 
examining its condition with very little trouble. It is not so easy to examine 
the condition of linseed ; it presupposes an extensive acquaintance with 
various descriptions of linseed-cake. You must have seen a great many 
samples of cake before you can give a trustworthy opinion. Not so with 
decorticated cotton-cake. In this the color affords an excellent criterion as 
to its freshness. The freshest cotton-cake is as yellow as mustard. I hold a 
piece of cake in my hand, the exterior of which is brown ; but if I cat away 
a portion, you will observe that the interior is bright yellow — very different 
from the part that has been exposed to the air. This was an excellent cake 
when we first got it for feeding purposes, and we are feeding it extensively 
on our farm at Cirencester. When we lirst had it, it was of a bright yellow 
color ; but you observe how it has since changed. From this we may learn 
a very useful lesson, that we may take the color as a guide to the condition 
and age of the cakes. If we are . presented with a cake which is as brown 
as the specimen before me, and if you find on cutting it that the brown color 
has penetrated deep into the interior, we may at once conclude that it is a 
stale old cake. The deeper it has penetrated, the older the cake, and the 
more it lias suffered by bad keeping. If it is kept in a damp place, its color 
and condition are rapidly deteriorated, 


lin«,.pH. Mi.««r,i Cotion-secd cake Poppy- 

Linseed. ^'^^^I^' Eape-eake. M";^» ^ made of .eJ 

whole seed. cake. 

Water 7.50 12.44 10.68 11.90 11.19 11. G3 

Oil 34.00 12.79 11.10 6.69 9.08... . 6.75 

FleBh-forming matters 24.44 27.69 29.53 23.48 25.16 31.46 

Heat-giving constituents 30'73 40.95 40.90 62.14 48.93 38.18 

Inorganic matters (ash) 3.33 6.13 7.79 6.79 6.64 12.98 

100.00 100.00 100.00 100 00 100.00 100.00 

9G. Salt for Stock. — A great deal has been written upon the use of salt 
for animals, and much reasoning employed to prove various positions ; but 
very few accurate experiments have been made. Loose and general observ- 
ations have been the basis for most of the opinions formed. A certain 
quantity of salt is unquestionably useful ; an excess is as certainly hurtful. 
The proper amount is what we want to have determined. All ordinary food 
of animals contains more or less salt — as, for example, a tun of barley or 
oats straw, and of some kinds of hay, contains six pounds of salt ; a tun of 
carrots contains four pounds. We can not, therefore, speak of animals eating 
no salt — they all partake of it, but we wish to know the right quantity. 

The Genesee Farmei\ from which we have frequently extracted useful 
facts, and to which we are indebted for the next half dozen, says of salt for 
cattle feeding for the shambles : 

" We have had our doubfs whether it was good economy to allow animals 
feeding for the lutcher the free use of salt. Salt is doubtless conducive to 
health, favoring the formation of bile, and aiding in carrying effete matter 


from the system ; but there is no reason to suppose that it favors the accu- 
mulation of fat. Liebig, indeed, asserts that ' the absence of common salt is 
favorable to the fonnation of fat, ^ and that the ' fattening of an animal is 
rendered impossible, when we add to its food an excess of salt, although 
short of the quantity required to produce a purgative effect.' Ilecently, 
however, in allusion to experiments made since tlie publication of the work 
in wliich the above sentences occur, Liebig says: 'Salt does not act as a 
producer of flesh ; but it neutralizes the injurious actions of the conditions 
which must be united in the unnatural state of animals fed or fattened in 
order to produce flesh ; and the advantages attending its use can hardly be 
estimated too highly.' 

" Boussingault is also in favor of salt. Two lots of steers were fed tliirteen 
months, one with and one without salt. The average weiglit per head of 
the salted lot, at the commencement of the experiment, was 995 lbs. ; at the 
end of thirteen months, 2,090 lbs. Increase, 1,135 lbs. They consumed per 
Iiead 15,972 lbs. of hay. One tun of hay, therefore, produced 14:3 lbs. of 
increase of animal. 

"The second lot, which received no salt, averaged at the commencement 
of the experiment 896 lbs. ; at the end of thirteen months, 1,890 lbs. 
Increase, 994 lbs. They consumed per head 14,553 lbs. of hay, or one tun 
of hay produced 137 lbs. of increase of animal. 

"The steers receiving salt produced six pounds more increase for each tun 
of hay consumed than those which were not allowed salt. This may be 
considered only a slight advantage, and in France did not pay the cost of 
the salt ; in this country, liowever, where salt is much cheaper, its use will 
doubtless be profitable. Boussingault remarks : 'The salt exercises no con- 
siderable influence on the growth, yet it appears to exert a beneficial effect 
on the appearance and condition of the animal.' Up to the first fourteen 
days no perceptible dift'erence was observed between the two lots ; but in the 
course of the month following, the difierence was visible, even to the 
impracticed eye." 

With such good authority, it is presumed feeders will continue the use of 
salt; but let us give them this one word of caution — do not give it in excess. 
If you can not get rock-salt, or if that is too expensive, mix fine salt with 
soft clay,^and dry that in large cakes, and lay them under cover for the cattle 
to lick. 

97. Ilock-Salt. — We reiterate that rock-salt is not only the most econom- 
ical, but the most convenient for the farmer to salt his cattle, since it can be 
placed where they can lick it at their leisure, and there it will remain, sum- 
mer and winter ; the rains have very little effect upon it while in a lump, 
as it comes from the quarry, it being really what its name indicates, a piece 
of rock. When broken fine it dissolves easily, but not before. 

A farmer who has the least idea of economy should learn how much he 
can save in a year, or a lifetime, by the simple operation of substituting rock- 
salt in place of that in ordinary use for farm-Stock. A lump of rock-salt 


may be placed in any out-door situation, wliere cattle can go and lick if 
whenever their appetite inclines them to do so, and it will not waste by 
exposure to dew or rain, because it is not hygrometric, as is the manufactured 
salt in common use. Another thing in its favor is this — your stock, with 
salt always before them, will never eat too much. Neither will they eat it 
too fast, as they almost always do Avhen salted with tine salt ; nor waste it 
by scattering it in the dirt, or leaving, it to dissolve and sink into the earth. 
Another difSculty is obviated by the use of rock-salt constantly within reach 
of stock, and that is, the hooking and punching of the weaker animals by 
the strong ones, ih fighting their way to the once-a-week, or perhaps once- 
a-month, salting-place. 

Rock-salt is a mineral as much as marble, and almost as solid and hard, 
and is quarried out of mines, like coal or other mineral substances. The 
most extensive salt mines are at Ci'acow, in Poland, where there are regular 
cartways, streets, and villages of miners' huts, where men, women, and 
children, and domestic animals live deep down in the earth. Our principal 
supply of rock-salt comes from Cheshire, England, where there are extensive 
mines. In its mineral state, the salt is of a slightly reddish color, and dingy 
white, and some of it needs to be melted and purified for culinary pnrposes. 
The purest portion may be reduced at once to powder by breaking and 
grinding, and is then quite white. The salt known here as Liverpool salt is 
refined rock-salt from the Cheshire mines. 

A lump of rock-salt as big as a man's head may be fixed by pins npon a 
rock or block, where the water will not stand around it, and it will remain 
until all licked away by the cattle's tongues. In case of stock in stables, a 
lump may be placed in each manger. 

98. Bones for Animais. — A good deal has been lately said abont feeding 
animals with bone-meal. We give several opinions upon the subject : 

E. C. "Wright, of Gallatin County, 111., states, on the authority of the Eev. 
John Crawford, of Crawford, in that county, that the bones of swine dying 
with what is called hog cholera, decay as rapidly as the flesh, and that portions 
of the skin outlast the bones. He wants scientific men to give attention to 
this strange consumption of the solids, and thinks that it may bo the means 
of suggesting a remedy for the disease so fatal and so pecuniarily distressing 
to a vast number of farmers in the West. Now, as we know that feeding 
bone-meal to animals and phosphate of lime to plants that need it, has 
proved beneficial, is it impossible or improbable that feeding it to swine 
suflerlng from a disease that produces the effect described, may not be the 
means of curing or preventing the disease? 

Dr. Waterbury says : " There are some new theories in relation to feeding 
phosphates to animals. It is possible that this may have some effect. There 
is an idea prevailing that feeding material that makes bones will increase 
their size. It is a subject well M'ortliy of more attention." 

Prof. Mapes states that, when a calf is deficient in bone, that is, too weak 
to stand, feeding bone-meal to the cow that suckles the calf will furnish it 


with the necessary material. Tliis fact is well known to many farmers, and 
that cows eat old bones with great avidity. "We also know that physicians 
are using a solution of phosphate of lime in their practice, and there is no 
doubt it may be administered to domestic animals with equally good ctiect; 
and whether, in the case named, it worked a cure or not, it is well worth 
trying. Many things much more simple have produced wonderful results. 

99. Water for Stock. — See that your stock have an abundance of clear, 
good water in hot weather. If it is pnmped from wells, it should always be 
standing in boxes or troughs, so that stock can have access to it. Select, for 
hot days, fields with plenty of shade trees in them, to protect stock from the 
burning sun. Pastures should always contain shade trees, and they should 
be planted, if not there. 

Mr. Strawn, the great Illinois farmer, has successfully tried this method 
of keeping water on a stock farm : 

Dig a basin five or ten rods square, and ten feet deep, upon a high knoll ; 
feed corn in the basin to your hogs and cattle, until it is well puddled by 
the tramping of their feet, which will make it almost wafer-tight. Mr. 
Strawn says the rains of a single winter sufficed to accommodate several 
hundred head of stock, and that it had been dry but once in twelve years. 

For watering at the barn, in all situations where digging wells is expen- 
sive, cisterns should be provided, if running water from some brook or 
spring can not be brouglit in pipes, or sent iip by a water-ram. 

100. rhaffing Food for Stock. — Tliere is no disputing the fact that chafling 
food, particularly all coaree foi'age, will pay well, where it is as dear as it is 
in the vicinity of New York. At the State Fair Farmers' Club, at Elmira, 
October, 1860, the following opinions were given upon the subject : 

A. B. Dickenson said : " On good hay you can fat cattle, but you can not 
upon corn-stalks, but they are better than poor hay. I can not make an 
acre of corn-stalks as good as an acre of grass. If you want to raise a big 
crop of corn, put on barn-yard manure year after year on grass, and afie:- 
ward plow it in and make it mellow and rich, sixteen inches deep, and then 
corn will never exhaust the soil. Corn-stalks must always be chaflfed to 
obtain their full value." 

Col. Butterfield, of Utica, said: "Up to two or three years ago, I thought 
l)ut little of corn-fodder. I then cut the top stalks; now I cut up by the 
ground, and my cattle do first-rate on corn-stalks till March. To get the 
greatest benefit from corn-stalks, they must be chaff'cd and steamed." 

Hon. T. C. Peters, of Darien, N. Y., said : " I grow corn for fodder as well 
as grain, and cut up from the ground, and chaS" the stalks for feeding. Tliere 
is no other feed for milch cows in Avinter equally valuable if it is well cured 
and flien chaffed ; and if steamed, it is still better." 

Mr. Lyman Barnard, of Steuben County, said : " I cut up my corn from 
the ground, and cut the stalks up fine in a stalk-cutter, and mix with cut 
straw, and I find my cattle and horses do as well, or better, than tipon good 
timothy hay." 


Mr. Plumb, of Onondaga County, said : " We don't raise any crop as val- 
uable as corn, and we do raise good wheat. I foddered 150 sheep and 12 
cows till March upon ten acres of corn-stalks, allowing the stock to run at a 
straw-stack besides. I raise the large eight-rowed yellow corn with a small 
oob, and like it better than Dutton corn. It yields better than any white 

It is the opinion of some really scientific men we have conversed with 
upon the subject, that in all places where hay usually sells as high as $20 a 
tun, and power is not unusually expensive, that it would pay, not only to 
chaff all hay, stalks, straw, etc., but actually to grind these substances into 
meal — not very fine, to be sure, but so that none of the particles would be 
more than an eighth of an inch in length. We saw, a few years ago, the 
model of a newly-invented mill that was most admirably well calculated for 
doing such work as reducing hay and straw to meal. It was the invention 
of Mr. Blanchard, of Boston. 

Flint, in his " Dairy Farming," in speaking of feeding milch cows, says : 
" One of the best courses is, to feed in the morning, either at the time of 
milking — which I prefer — or immediately after, with cut feed, consisting 
of hay, oats, millet, or corn-stalks, mixed with shorts, and Indian, linseed, 
or cotton-seed meal, thoroughly moistened with water. If in winter, hot 
or warm water is far better than cold. If given at milking-time, the cows 
will generally give down the milk more readily. The stalls and mangers 
ought always to be well cleaned out first." 

101. Nutritive Value of Various Kinds of Fodder.— The following tables 
will be useful, as showing the relative value of various substances : 

, — rer centage of Nitrogen , 

Net. equivalent. Dried. Undried. 

-1. Meadow hay 100 1.34 \Ab 

2. Red clover hay 75 1.70 1.54 

3. Rye-straw 479 0.30 0.24 

4. Oat-straw 383 0.36 0.30 

5. Wheat-straw 426 0.36 0.27 

6. Barley-straw 460 0.30 0.25 

7. Pea-straw 64 1.45 1.79 

The following is the composition of these several substances, in which 
their relative value will more distinctly appear : 

Water. Woody fiber. ^tafgCh^ Gum, 6J»'en.Al; Fatty matter. Saline matter. 

14 30 40 '. 7.1 2to5 5tol0 

14 26 40 9.3 3 to 6 9 

12 to 15 45 38 1.3 ....... — 4 

12 45 ....... 35 1.3 0.8 6 

12 to 15 50 30 1.3 2 to 3 5 

12 to 15 50 30 1.3 — 5 

10 to 15 25 45 12.3 1.5 4 to 6 

From these tables it will be seen that, taking good English or meadow 
hay as the standard of comparison, and calling that one, 4.79 times the 
weight of rye-straw, or 3.83 times the weight of oat-straw, contains the same 
amount of nutritive matter ; that is, it would take 4.79 times as much rye- 
straw to produce the same result as good meadow hay. 



Chap. I. 

NUTRmVE EQUIVALENTS. (PttACriCAL aot Tueorbticai..) 



English hay. 

K<'»I clover hay 

K--ti clover (green) . .. 

Hj— ilraw 


C trrol-leavea (tops). . . 

tiwediah turnips 


Willie siliciaa beet . .. 



Potatoes kept in pita.. 



IniHan corn 






01-cake (linseed) 






87. « 




7(1 « 














11. ■) 












i * 

^ tz 


1= =5 










] to 6.03 





1 to 24.40 



1 to 12.50 








1 to 7.20 





1 to 7.R4 



1 lu 9.'0 





1 to 2.8 



I to 2.14 



1 to e..^ 



1 to 6.05 



1 to 4.25 



1 to 4.' S 



1 to 4.43 



1 to 2.42 




PrecUcd TftluM, «■ obula«il l>j cxpertmenu 
f««dlus, acconllut to 

84 5-12 

58 1112 89} 
6S 1-16 I "" 
38 5-6 1 

300 ' — 800 250 j 201 1 _ 
40) : 250 4I-.0 250 t S.'.3 ! SCCf 

Oats in the bundle, well cut up, straw and all, make excellent, cheap feed 
for horses or other stock ; in many cases it is much better than threshing 
them. For heavy teams hard at work, a little sound corn-meal mixed wet 
with them, makes a feed that can not well be beaten. It is a highly econ- 
omical and satisfactory way of feeding, both to man and beast, M-here oats 
sell at a low price by the bushel. 

103. A Treatise ou Feeding. — A valuable treatise on feeding, wliich miglit 
be studied with profit by all farmers, has been made by Mr. Ilorsefall, an 
English farmer, and published in the journal of the Royal Agricultural 
Society, which may be found complete as an appendix to Flint's " Dairy 

103. Soiling Cattle* — Soiling is a term ajiplied to the practice of confining 
animals to the stable, and growing a green crop, such as sowed corn, sorgo, 
wheat, rye, or oats, clover, etc., which is cut up as needed, and carried to the 
animals, instead of allowing them to have the range of the pastures. Mr. 
Pliilo Gregory, of Gliester, Orange Co., N. Y., sowed a patch of half an 
acre, with corn for fodder, making the rows thirty inches apart. With the 
product he kept tiocntij-fivc cows for six uvcks without other food. 

The most extensive and successful system of soiling is ])ursued by Hon. 
Josiah Quincy, Jr., of Boston, who has published a small volume giving 
details of his practice. One of the great advantages of soiling is the saving 
of manure, the quantity being largely increased over that made by an equal 
number of cattle at pasture, or fed in the ordinary way. "We recommend 
any one disposed to attempt the soiling system to road Mr. Quincy's book. 

101. Diseases of Tattle. — We shall not attempt to give a treatise upon the 


diseases of cattle and the remedies ; for this, we must refer the reader to 
Dr. Dadd, veterinary surgeon, Boston, and his valuable writings, as well as 
several other good publications, not forgetting the Stoch Journal, New 
York. We will give, however, the following sensible remarks upon one 
of the most common diseases, or symptoms of disease, from Thos. E. Hatch, 
Keene, JST. H. 

105. The Horn Ail. — Mr. Hatch says: "'Horn Ail,' or 'Hollow Horn,' 
is an absurd misnomer for an imaginary disease in many cases, and for a 
symptom of fever in others. Many a farmer has reluctantly ' cut off one 
inch,' or more, from the tail of a beautiful animal, when it was turned out 
to pasture, under the erroneous impression that it would do better, ' for the 
hair hung in curls,' although the animal was in perfect liealth and good 
condition, and needed no remedy of any kind. In fever, the degree of 
arterial excitement is estimated in part by the heat at the base of the horn, 
which is very thin, and covers the most Avascular bone in the animal, thereby 
displaying symptoms of great value to those capable of appreciating them. 

" But even in fever there can never be the slightest occasion for ' cutting 
off one inch of the tail,' nor for pouring hoiling water upon the horns of a 
suffering animal until he ' dodges.'' A cathartic of epsom or glauber salts, 
sulphur or linseed-oil, combined with ginger, red pepper, or any stimulant 
aromatic, will do all the good, and much more, than the slight bleeding from 
the cut can do, and not leave the animal to thump its sides the remainder 
of its life with a mutilated stump, a living monument that all the darkness 
of the dark ages has not yet passed away. 

"The hope tliat I may be the means, in a single case, of preserving intact 
one of the beauties of the bovine race, to the unfortunate animal suffering 
from 'Horn Ail' or 'Tail Sickness,' is the only apology that I can offer for 
this communication. I would as soon knock off the horn, or slit the ears of 
a favorite animal, as to ' cut off one inch of the tail,' and should have as 
good physiological reasons for so doing. Tlie disfigurement in either case 
would be about equal, but the inconvenience which the animal would suffer 
from the loss of the long, silky brush so kindly furnished by nature, espe- 
cially in 'fly time,' would be immeasurably greater." 

The Ohio Kercuma, an ounce to a dose, given in wliisky a few times to 
a cow with this disease, is recommended as a valuable cure. In our opinion, 
good feed and warm stables as a preventive are worth more than all the cures. 

106. Cure of Scours in Cattle. — An English farmer recommends the use 
of acorn-meal as a sure cure of diarrhea in horned cattle, sheep, and lanib«, 
and young stock generally. He says : 

" I sent the dried acorns to the mill to be ground into flour, and when I 
found symptoms of scour or diarrhea in my cattle, I ordered two handfiils 
to be mixed in a bran mash, and given warm immediately, and to continue 
it once a day, until the disease disappeared. This proved a never-failing 
cure — insomuch that I never had any trouble from the disease afterward ; 
and my neighbors, seeing this, had recoui-se to me for a little of my acorn 


flour, when the disease appeared in their cattle, which, of course, I was glad 
to give thcin, the result being the same as in my own case." 

107. To Cure Lice on Cattle. — Some farmers have great faith in the 
efficacy of onions for ridding cows or oxen of lice. Mr. Roe, of Orange 
County, N. Y., claims to have found them an infallible remedy in his prac- 
tice. They also give a tone to the stomach, and are especially valuable in 
hot weather, when working cattle will lie in the shade at noon-time, and 
refuse to eat. Mr. Roe uses the " scullions," or small, unsalable onions, and 
those which become soft or sprouted toward spring. He gives a feed of half 
a peck once a day, at noon, and says that two feeds are sufficient to extirpate 
any number of vermin. 

A correspondent recommends the following remedy for lice or ticks : " One 
tablespoonful of sulphur to one pint of salt, mi.K thoroughly together, and 
feed to cattle or sheep once a week, in quantities, as wc usually feed cattle, 
for two months in succession, and there will be no ticks or lice on them." 

108. Cattle Poisoned with BrinCi— Many farmers have learned to their 
sorrow that old brine, placed within the reach of hogs, cattle, and perhaps 
other farm stock, will cause death ; and as there are others who may not have 
learned this fact, we now place it on record for their benefit. We will also 
give the results of certain investigations made at the Veterinary School, at 
Ayort, France, by M. Reynal, which throw additional light upon the subject. 
It is ascertained that the poisonous projjcrties of brine are not immediately 
acquired ; but it assumes this condition only after it has been in contact for 
several months with the meat, when, if mixed with the food of stock, even 
in small quantities, it will produce death ; but when hogs and other stock can 
get to it, unmixed with food, its effects are still more speedily fatal. The 
poison acts as a local irritant, exciting violent intestinal congestion and 
inflammation. It likewise increases the secretion of the skin and kidneys, 
and exerts a direct effect upon the nervous system, giving rise to trembling, 
loss of sensation, convulsions, etc. 

The salt of the worst brine may be saved in a pure state by boiling the 
brine and carefully skimming off all the scum. The remainder may then be 
used as brine, or reduced to salt by still more boiling. 

109. Cattic Poisoaed by Wild Cherry Leaves. — It is not an unusual thing 
for cattle to be poisoned with the leaves of the common wild cherry-tree, 
which are almost sure death if eaten in a wilted state, unless a remedy is 
immediately administered. Tlie most convenient, read3' remedy which a 
farmer can use is hog's lard and molasses, mixed in about equal quanti- 
ties, by melting the lard and warming the molasses. It should be given in 
doses of a pint or a quart, by means of a black bottle, pouring it well down 
the animal's throat. 

110. Overstockine; the Farm. — Tliis is about the worst practice in farming, 
as regards stock, either in summer or winter. It is not only unprofitable to 
keep useless animals, such as liorses or oxen, but if you are overstocked, the 
whole must deteriorate. There is nothinff about a farm that has a more 


distressed appearance than half-starved animals, and there is nothing about 
farming that is more unprofitable. Even the manure accumulated from 
such stock is far less valuable than that saved from -well-fed animals. 

The most important tiling in farm-stock is a good team, and that should 
be the first consideration. Have a team or teams sufficient to do all your 
work, except some particular things, such as threshing, and for such extra 
work have a standing arrangement, if possible, with a neighbor to exchange 
team work. You can not afford to keep any extra team. You may be 
overstocked in any other kind of animals with less damage than working 
ones, but you can in no way afford to do without enough of them, and the 
better they are, the better it will be for you. Farm-stock must be adapted 
to circumstances to be profitable. "When milk sells at two cents a quart, at 
or near the farm, milch cows are profitable stock, because if one average five 
quarts a day, her milk will bring $36 50 a year, and some of the milch dairy 
cows near New York double that. The average we have heard estimated 
at $45 for all the cows kept on a farm. We have known the profit of 
grazing a herd of fatting bullocks through the season often to range from 
§38 to $40 a head, but we could not recommend every one to go into the 
business, because it requires skill in buying, keeping, and soiling that all do 
not and are not likely to possess. In all cases farm-stock should be adapted 
to circumstances, and there is certainly a want of judgment in this respect 
that is amazing. Men in Mississippi have tried to raise fine-wool sheep 
suited to Vermont, and men in "Vermont have tried to use mules for farm- 
work, instead of their own hardy breed of horses, because they had read 
that they were much the most economical for fiirm-work in all the Southern 
States. The pastures of New England are noted for their sweet grass and 
excellent red cattle ; and tlie blue-grass fields and fat Durhams of Kentucky 
are equally noted, and all should know that it would not serve either section 
to advantage to exchange breeds of cattle. The adaptability of stock to the 
farm is a subject that we do not wish to dictate upon, but we ask reasonable 
men to take counsel with reason, and apply that ni all cases to their own 

111. Imported vs. Native Stock. — Eobert Purvis, of Byberry, Penn., has 
a farm in a high state of cultivation, one of the best in Pennsylvania, and 
cojisequently, in our opinion, his ideas are entitled to a share of our respect. 
He says : 

"For many years I have made it my business, as it has been my pleasure, 
to do what I could to promote the improvements of farm-stock. My chief 
attention has been given to cows, hogs, and fowls, though I have not been 
unmindful to other varieties. Of cows, I have raised the Durham, Ayr- 
shire, and the Devonshire ; of hogs, the Berkshire and tlie Suffolk ; and of 
fowls, a great variety. I have confined my attention chiefly to those of for- 
eign growth or origin. That I have succeeded as well as others, may be 
inferred from the fact that at the various shows I have taken a fair share of 
the premiums. Nevertheless, my success, though encouraging, has not been 


altogether satisfactory ; that is, it has not proved to me that any of these 
foreign breeds, whether of cows, hogs, or fowls, are the best that we can 
liave in this country, or are just the thing we want. On the contrary, it has 
demonstrated to me quite the opposite, viz. : That before we can attain the 
desii-ed success in this field of experiment, we must give more attention than 
wc are now giving to animals which are the growth of our oicn soil. .Kot 
tliat I would nndervalue the advantages of importing the best varieties of 
foreign breeds, for too- much praise can not be rendered those public-spirited 
men who spend their money liberally in bringing to our shores the best 
specimens tliey can obtain of European animals ; but, at the same time, too 
little credit may be given to others who are doing what they can to improve 
our native breeds. 

" I don't know how it may be with others, but according to my experience 
and observation, there is an tcnvari/iiig U-^ulency in all imported stock to 
deterioration. Whether it is owing to the climate, or soil, or whaf, I 
don't pretend to eay ; but this tendency to dep;enerate in all foreign animals, 
whatever pains may have been taken with them, has been, according to my 
knowledge, witliout an exception. Now, assuming this to be true, wliicli, 
nnderstand me, I do not aver, the- question arises : "Would it not be better for 
US, in trying to impi'ove onr stock, to make our selections for the purpose 
without regard to the animal's origin ? In milch cows, for instance, ought 
we not to choose the finest-looking animal and best milker we can find, 
whether native, imported, or mixed? and ought we not to see that the oflP- 
spring are the product of a sire chosen on the same principle? Is it not 
likely, and does not experience, so far as it has been made, show that the 
tendency of this sort of breeding is to a continual improvement in the stock? 
I would ask the same questions in regard to hogs, fowls, horses, sheep, and 
al! other kinds of animals. In otlier words, ought we not to make more ac- 
count of our native breeds, and seek, by judicious crossing and care in other 
respects, to attain tlie ei^ which we have not yet reached in the matter of 
stock-raising ?" 

Do farmers generally sufficiently ajipreciato the reason why imported or 
liigh-bred cattle look so much better than the natives? Is it not because 
one class is high-fed as avcU as high-bred, and treated with the greatest pos- 
sible care, while many of the poor natives are treated with the greatest 
possible neglect — exposed to storms, summer and winter, and kept upon 
sliort pasture while it is possil)le for the animals to get a living, and then 
grudgingly fed coarse herbage to carry them alive through the winter. 
With such treatment, the poor natives have no fair chance to compete with 
the pampered stock lately imported ; yet, witli equally good treatment and 
constant care in breeding, we believe as good cattle may be raised up out 
of some of the natives as can be found among tliose imported and maintained 
at such great extra expense. At least, we believe that if as much care had 
been bestowed on our native stock as lias been on tlic imported breeds for the 
last thirty years, the natives would now be nearly equal to the imported. 


(Page 81.) 

The subject of feeding swine is treated of in Section II., but to 
enable readers to understand the style of the different breeds, fed 
to a condition for show, we have preferred to direct his attention to 
this picture rather than to a written description. Upon the left 
hand he will see representatives of the Berkshire, black and white. 
In the center are the beautiful white, thin-haired SufiFolk, and on 
the right the black, thin-haired Essex, a favorite breed in England, 
lately introduced into this country. Indeed, all three of these 
named are favorite English breeds. On the right, in the rear, an 
American breed, the Chester County, is represented. All that is 
known of the history of this breed is Ijriefly told in ^ 13. Tliis 
picture of four families of swine is equal to any other ever printed. 
It is worthy of careful attention. 

Above the swine, as they always should be, in the estimation of 
farmers, are the sheep, showing good representatives of the three 
great ftimiUes of long wool, fine wool, and medium. On the right, 
the long-wool variety, luider the name of Cotswold, are well repre- 
sented. In the center, the pair of merinos stand as fair types of 
the fine avooI, and are handsome portraits of the large-sized sheep 
of this variety. The noble South Downs on the left show what this 
breed looks like. Their black faces and legs and round, full bodies 
are characteristics of the family. Altogether, these four families of 
swine and three of sheep make a pictui-e that is not to be passed 
lightly over. 

Seo. 7.] 



Wliy should we import hogs ? All the improved English breeds arc 
made up. And why we can not just as well make a breed here that shall 
suit our circumstances, and need no acclimathig, we can not imagine. Tlie 
fecundity of pigs gives the breeder a greater facility in improving his hogs 
than he possesses with any other large domestic animal. Let hiin have an 
object in view and steadily pursue it for a few years, and success and great 
profit are certain. 


reeds of English Sheep.— At a recent meeting of 

the Central Farmers' Club at London, Mr. Charles 

Howard delivered an address on the tubject of 

"The Merits of Pure-Bred and Cross-Bred Sheep." 

'•^~s In this address he gave the origin and mei-its of 

several of the " established" breeds. We condense as 

follows : 

I. SoTTTHDOWNS. — " Tlie South, or Sussex Downs, are de- 
scended from small, gray, and dark-faced sheep which 
were found on the hilly and mountainous districts through- 
out England. John Ellman was the original improver. 
He was followed and surpassed by Jonas Webb, who has 
made the Southdown perfect. Tlie peculiarity of this sheep is its supe- 
rior quality of mutton and wool. Average weight, from thirteen to fifteen 
months, is 126 lbs. ; weight of fleece, 6 lbs. The ewes are capital breedeis, 
and generally produce one third twins. They are best adapted to elevated 
situtUious and bare pasturage. Among the nobility and fancy farmers they 
arc regarded as tlie elite of sheep. 

II. Hampshire Dcwns.-^" This valuable sheep has been established from 
various crosses, commencing with the century. Tliey present as great a 
uniformity in wool, color, and general appearance as their smaller but hand 
somer cousins, the Southdowns. Tiiey have risen into favor rapidly. They 
arc very liardy, and of good constitutions, and good wool-bearers, the aver- 
age fleece being 6 to 7 lbs., of early maturity, and have plenty of lean as 
well as fat meat, and will graze to almost any weight you may choose to 
make them. The ewes are good breeders and sucklers. 

HI. Leicesters. — "Tliese originated with Bakewell. To this breed all 
other long-wooled sheep are indebted for their improved shape and greater 
disposition to fatten. Their chief characteristics are, great aptitude to fatten 
with a comparatively small consumption of food, and early maturity; fleece, 
7 lbs. ; carcass, at fourteen or fifteen months, 140 lbs. They are not very 
good breeders, and it is a rare thing to have more lambs than ewes. 

IV. The Cotbwold. — "This is one of the oldest of the established breeds. 


They were originally heavy, eoai-se animals, with a thick, heavy fleece, well 
adapted to the bleak, iininclosed Cotswold hills. Tiiey are now very hardy, 
and will succeed well in almost any situation, and produce a great amount 
of wool and mutton at an early age. They sometimes reach 86 lbs. to the 
quarter. The average weight of an ordinary flock when tit for the butcher, • 
at fourteen or tifteen montlis old, is about ISO lbs., and the weight of wool 
of the whole flock would be about 7i lbs. each. Many of these sheep are 
now being exported to Australia to produce mutton for tlie miners. 

V. LiNcoLNsniuES. — " As the western part of Great Britain is famous for 
its Cotswolds, so is the northeastern esteemed for the heavy-woolcd and 
large-framed Lincolns, to which district they especially belong, and where 
for many years they held their own. They, like the Cotswolds, have been 
improved by an admixture of Leicester blood. Tlie present improved Lin- 
coln sheep partakes largely of the pecnliariiios of the Cotswold and Leices- 
ter, having the expansive frame and nobility of appearance of the one, with 
the quality of flesh, compactness of form, beauty of countenance, and pro- 
pensity to fatten of the other ; but they far exceed either in weight of fleece. 
Three-year olds sometimes weigh OOj lbs. to the quarter, and yearlings 71 
lbs. The weight of wool of an entire flock, under fair average management, 
is about 8|lbs. each; weight of carcass at twenty-eight months, 100 lbs. 
Tlie Lincoln breeders consider the mutton excellent, having less fat and a 
greater proportion of fine-grained, lean flesh than the Leicesters. The ewes 
are good breeders, but, like the Cotswolds and Leicesters, they are not good 

VL SiiKOPsmEES. — "These are crosses. Their merit consists in their su- 
periority over any other breed in their own country. Tlicy possess h.irdincs.s 
of constitution, excellent quality of mutton, and are prolific bi-eeders ; but 
they are not equal to other breeds. 

VIL OxFOKDSiiiRE Downs. — "Tliis breed of sheep was produced twenty, 
seven years ago by crossing the Hampshire, and in some instances South- 
down cAves, with Cotswold rams, and then putting the crosses together. 
They drop their lambs in February, and at thirteen or fourteen months old 
they are ready for market, weighing, on an average, 140 lbs. each, with a 
fleece varying from 7 to 10 lbs. The ewes are good mothers, and produce a 
great proportion of twins." 

We might add here, as these last two breeds are crosses, that Mr. IToward 
stated, at the conclusion of his experience and address, " that from a judicious 
pairing of cross-bred animals, it is practicable to establish a new breed alto- 
gether," and for some locations better fitted than most of the existing breeds. 

113. Production of Sexes among Sheep. — The Journal (T Agriculture Pra- 
tique has a paper giving a variety of facts on this subject — from which the 
deduction is made, that the sex depends on the greater or less vigor of the 
individuals coupled. This has long been known and acted upon. It is fur- 
ther stated, as shown by careful observation and experiment, that more 
males are born among the first and last births in a flock reared by a single 


rain, than among the lamljs bom in the intervening i)eriod, when the male 
is weakened by excessive exerlion; and that the ewes wliicii prodnce males 
are on an average lighter tlian thoie which produce females, and lose more 
weight than the latter during the nursing period. Thus vigor in the male 
tends to produce males, but more from tlie weaker than tlie stronger ewes ; 
and the opposite fact in regard to females tends to keep up the equilibrium, 
and secure the perfection and preservation of the species, by confining the 
reproduction of either sex to the most perfect type of each respectively. 

114. First Importation of Meriuos.— The first importation of Spanish sheep 
into the United States took place in 1801. Four were sliipped by Mr. Dides- 
sert, a banker of Paris, three of which perished on the passage. In 1802 a 
large importation was made by Col. Humphreys ; and in 1809, '10, and '11, 
tlie Hon. "Wm. Jarvis, the American consul at Lisbon, sent home large and 
valuable flocks to his farna in Weathersfield, Vt. 

115. General Care and Management of Sheep. — Tliere are not many men in 
this country more capable of giving information upon this subject than T. S. 
(4old, of Cornwall, Connecticut. In the series of Yale College lectures, in 
the winter of 1859, '60, Mr. Gold gave a lecture upon sheep husbandry, in 
which he made tlie following points, wortliy of note by all sheep farmers : 

" Thrift. — It should always be the object of the flock-master to keep his 
sheep in a thriving condition. The quality of the wool, as well as its quan- 
tity, and the general productiveness of the flock, demand this system. 

" Shelter is the first necessity in providing for wintering sheep success- 
fully. The Southdowns will bear exposure better than any other class, of 
sheep. Tlie open fleece of the long-wooled parts on the back wlien wet, and 
admits the water, which completely drenches the animal, so that his abund- 
ant fleece is no longer a protection from cold. 

" Economy in feeding demands shelter for all sheep, as not only less food 
is required, but also it is better preserved from waste. Water-soaked hay, 
or that whicli is in any way soiled, is always rejected. The improvement 
in the qualify of the vxcmure forms another argument in favor of shelter. 
That this is not only healthful but grateful to the sheep at all seasons of the 
year, we see in the fact tliat even in summer they will seek their winter 
sheds at the approach of a storm if tliey are within their reach. 

" Ventilation is of jjaramonnt importance as connected with shelter; and 
to insure this, sheds open to the south are to be preferred. A stable with 
an open window will answer for a small number, but the crowding of a 
large flock in such a place aficcts the organs of respiration, and may result 
in serious disease, and sliould never be tolerated. 

"The best form of rack has posts three feet high in the corners, a bottom 
of boards, the sides and ends of two boards each, and the lower one the 
widest, with narrow perpendicular strips nailed on to keep the stronger 
sheep from crowding the weaker. The spaces are larger in their perpen- 
dicular than their horizontal opening. The size of these, as well as the 
width of the rack, must be in proportion to the size of the sheep. Not more 


than one Inindred of the fiiic-wooled sheep should be confined in the same 
yard, wliile tlie long-wooled will not thrive with more than twenty-live. A 
hofipital, enug and comforfahle, should receive any slieep that may be weak 
fnim ago or disease, until, by careful feeding and nursing, they can be re- 
turned to the fl<ick. 

" It is the worst possible practice to allow the sheep to fall away in flesh, 
as the grass fails in autumn. The increasing wool conceals the shrinking 
carcass, much to the disappointment of the careless flock-masters. Better 
conline them in the yard than allow them to ramble about in search of some 
field of winter grain, which furnishes a little green food, but too light to be 
of any real value. 

" Winter fodder should embrace, in addition to the dry food, a duo pro- 
portion of that which is green and succulent. Fine early-cut clover hay, 
well cured — tliat from old meadows, consisting of a variety of grasses — 
forms the best dry fodder. Economy demands that the quality should be 
good, else much waste ensues ; yet the sheep is very fond of variety, and al- 
most all of the so-called weeds become a choice morsel. The botanist knows 
full well that a sheep-range will be most barren of the objects of his search. 
The immortal Linnreus tested the plants most indigenous to Sweden by 
off"ering them, fresh gathered, to the various domesticated animals. Horses 
ate 202 species, and refused 212; cattle ate 276 species, and refused 218; 
while sheep took readily 385, and refused only 141 species. For fattening, 
add to the hay, roots, grain, or linseed, or cotton-seed meal. The English 
system of winter feeding on turnijis in the field is here prevented by ex 
cessive cold. Use them in the yards in moderate weather. Sudden changes 
from green to dry food, and the reverse, should be avoided. Regularity in 
the hours of feeding is very important. 

" The amount of fodder varies with the kind of sheep, though it is not 
directly proportioned to the live weight. Ten small, fine wooled sheep will 
eat as much as a cow, the larger ones requiring more. Two to two and a 
half, or even three and one third per cent, of the Jive weight in hay value is 
estimated by ditl'erent authors as daily required. 

" No other animals except calves should lie in the yards with sheep. The 
losses from the horns of steers and the heels of colts more than balance an}- 
supposed gain. As the brcalhiiig of the sheep on the hay does not of itself 
render it distasteful to cattle, it may be gathered from the racks and fe<l in 
another inclosure. 

" It is estimated that 300 lbs. of good hay will winter a small sheep, while 
larger ones may take three times the amount. 

" Water is absolutely necessary to the thrift of the sheep in the winter. It 
is best brought into the yards, as the steep banks of streams prove dangoi-- 
ous to the sheep. 

'■'■Salt may be provided in winter by a moderate salting of the hay — 
two to four quarts a tun ; but excessive sailing must be avoided, for with it 
neither sheep nor cattle will thrive. 

I i 

! I 


" As the lambing season approaches, snug quarters must be provided for 
the breeding ewes, where they can be clean, warm, and dry." 

116. Graia for Sbcep. — Major Wm. Lee, one of the most successful wool- 
growers of western Pennsylvania, manages his sheep as follows, according to 
the Ohio Farmer : " They are not confined to sheds ; they are only provided 
wiili a dry place for shelter and rest. After they rise of their own accord, in 
the morning, he feeds again, two thirds corn, and one third barley or oats. Af- 
terwards he feeds hay, and also at three o'clock again, so that the sheep have 
finished eating before nightfall. He considers that corn will make more 
wool than oats, and general opinion favors out-door feeding. Sheep housed 
will not eat as much, nor will they shear as much wool." 

Another sheep-farmer says : " I am willing to make afiidavit that with 
me, in many years' experience carefully tested, sheep of the same kind, weigh- 
ing from 110 to 130 lbs., will put on more fat and gain a great deal more 
weight on 1 or 1 j lbs. of grain or oil-cake per day, in three or four months, 
icith only straw fur fodder, than those weighing 80 to 90 lbs. ; and I value 
a sheep weighing 125 to 130 lbs. as worth half a cent more per pound of live 
weight, for me to feed fat than one weigliing 90 or 100 lbs. Now, no man 
will suppose that the straw will put on any fat, or make sheep gain in weight. 
If you feed sheep straw only, they would lose weight, and that greatly ; but 
with a pound of meal or grain daily, they will gain daily. I can prove all I 
have said by neighbors who have been feeding for a few years past, and who 
will now only buy the largest sheep of their class, or the largest cattle of 
their age." 

117. Weight of Hay for Sheep. — The question. How much hay do sheep 
or cattle require per day ? is thus answered by Alexander Speck von Stern- 
berg, of Lutzchena, Saxony, to the Hon. Joseph A. Wright, American min- 
ister at Berlin. He says : " One thirtieth part of the weight of the live 
animal, in good hay, is considered necessary per day for its sustenance. 
According to the quality of the fodder, and its abundance or scarcity, this 
may be increased to one twentietli part ; but less than one thirtieth part 
ought not to be given. Taking good meadow hay as the fodder standard, a 
ram should receive about 2>\ lbs. per day, a ewe about 2 J lbs., yearlings, 
etc., in that proportion — taking the average of a full-grown ram at 110 lbs., 
of a ewe at 73 lbs., the weight of each varying, according to age, size, and 
condition, between 105 and 125 lbs. as regards the full-sized rams, and from 
70 to 85 lbs. as regards the full-grown ewes. The weight of a wether varies 
between 80 lbs. in lean condition, and 110 to 115 lbs., if strong and fat for 
t!ie butcher. One pound of good meadow hay is considered equivalent to 
1| lbs. of oat, pea, wheat, or barley straw, libs, of turnips, or 2 lbs. of grains 
in die wet state, as delivered from the brewery in winter. When the time 
for stabling for Avinter arrives, the sheep-master has his supplies of straw, 
hay, and turnips allotted to him on the basis of the above calculation, and 
he is bound to make them serve out the proper time, under-feeding being as 
much guarded against as over-feeding and waste." 


Another writer says: "The usual rate of the consumption of food is at 
the rate of Si lbs. of hay daily for every 100 lbs. of live weight. If we take 
the average of Hocks, the live weiglit of lUO common sheep would be about 
7 500 lbs., or from tliat up to 8,000 lbs. It is rare that a M-hole flock of 
fine-wooled sheep will average more than 70 lbs. for each head, though it may 
be that tliis weiglit is exceeded in some instances. At the rate mentioned, 
a flock of 100 sheep should use up or consume 280 lbs. of hay per day, or a 
total of 25 tuns in the winter season tliat lasted 180 days. This would also 
equal 504 lbs. to each single sheep ; or it may be stated as a general rule, 
that a full-grown Merino sheep, averaging in live weight from 75 to 100 lbs., 
will consume during the winter season a quarter of a tun of hay, or its equiv- 
alent, if comfortably kept. If grain forms a part of the ration, of course 
some of the hay may be saved ; but if the animal is to be kept growing 
wool, it will need is full ratio of hay, and a little grain, too." 

lis. Changiu? Pasl?irCi — Some shet'p-farmcrs arc very particular about 
changing pastures. This is right, if llie inclosures are small. If there is a 
wide range, it is of no particular advantage 1o confine slieep to one portion 
of it, and then shift them to another. 

119. Feedius Sheep vsi Beeves. — 'Mechi, wlio is a highly cnliglitened and 
practical Englisli ngricullnrist, says lie is convinced that beef must sell at 
20 per cent, higher than mutton to make tliem pay alike. He also remarks, 
that lie agrees with a friend of his, who says, that he who keeps many bul- 
locks will never need to make a will. 

Our observation in relation to the comparative profits in this country 
coincides with Mr. Mechi. 

Thos. Ikdl, of Monmouth County, N. J., makes the following statement in 
regar<l to the profits of feeding sheep : 

"I usually keep about 100 sheep, and renew my flock every year. J[y 
neighbors and myself agree with a drover to lake certain numliers, and he 
goes up the Delaware into the State of New York, where he obtains a large 
strain of common f-heep. 1 buy the best ones in the flock, paying the high- 
est market price, which this year was $'i 50 a head, while my neighbors prefer 
to take tlie lower-priced sheep, graduating down to $3 50 or $2 25 a head. I 
get my new flock in about the 1st of October, and immediately put the ewes to 
full-blood Southdown bucks, so as to have the lambs dropped early in April. 
I have good autumn pasture, so as to keep the flock in good condition to go 
inio winter (puirters, where I keep them in yards with open sheds, fifty shec>p 
in a pen, with feeding-racks, and freedom to lay under cover or out in the 
open weather. Their own instinct governs them about seeking shelter when 
it storms. I feed the flock once a day upon hay, and once a day upon wliolc 
stalks of Indian corn cut from the ground as soon as it is hard enough to 
ripen in the shock, when the shocks are well cured, and afterward the corn 
is husked and stalks stored for winter. T!ic sheep trim them of leaves, 
and the dry stalks nuike good bedding for them. I watcli my ewes and take 
them out of the flock as the time aiqiroaches to drop their lambs, and put 


tlieiii in other yards, wliere they are fed on grain and good hay, and I sel- 
dom lose a lamb. I graze my tlock upon less than eighteen acres of good 
pasture, which has been made to produce sweet grass by the apjjlication of 
greon sand marl, by which I have renovated a worn-out farm. By the end 
of July I have my lambs, which are largo and fat, and M-ell marked with the 
Southdown characteristics, all off to the butcher — this year at $4 75 eacli, 
selling the whole lot to one man. I could have sold them in small lots so as 
to average $5 a liead. The ewes, after the lambs are taken off, become fat 
upon grass alone, so as to bring the best market price of tliat class of sheep 
in September. I have just sold all off, and find tliat the 100 liead which 1 
purchased at $3 50 one year ago, have yielded me in wool. Iambs, and old 
shccj) $7 50 a head over the cost of the stock. Last year I realized $7 a 
head profit, or rather, I got that for keei>ing 100 head of sheep one year, and 
I think that sum may be safely calculated upon every year. And besides 
this ]:!ofi?, I find my sheep are enriching my land and are more advan 
tagcoi;s in every way than any otlier kind of stock. Every farmer keeping 
sheep should have a lot of movable fence, and inclose small plots — say half 
an acre at a time — of the poorest parts of tlie farm, such as gravelly knolls, 
upon which to yard tlie flock nights. The only drawback to keeping sheep 
upon hundreds of farms near New York is the worthless cur dogs. In New 
Jersey we have a good law which gives out of the general tax $5 a head for 
all sheep killed by dogs. Tliat insures every common sheep, but does not 
warrant me in keeping full-blood Southdown or other valuable breeds. The 
State of New York needs a stringent law against dogs to protect the interest 
of farmers who keep sheep, particularly in the coimties near the city." 

The above statement of Mr. Bell is a very encouraging one, and would 
doubtless encourage many of the farmers convenient to the city market to 
adopt the same course if the State Legislature would protect tliem against 
dogs. Tlie question resolves itself into this simple form : Is it of more gen- 
eral advantage to the State to grow wool and mutton than it is to grow dogs 
— dogs, too, of the most worthless sorts ? It is one of the rarest things in tlie 
world that a sheiaherd dog or a good house watch-dog ever kills sheep. It 
is only the meanest, prowling, thieving, worthless curs, of no value to their 
owners, that destroy sheep. Let ns have a law to annihilate them, and then 
eveiy man can keep sheep with the same results as Mr. Bell. 

Mr. Carpenter, of Elmira, said : " A neighbor of mine makes just about 
the same average upon his flock of grade Southdowns. He shears six pounds 
of wool per head, and he sells his lambs at $4." 

Samuel Tliorne, of Dutchess County, N. Y., pursues the same course, 
with the same results, as Mr. Bell. 

Mr. Wade, of Canada "West, says : " Tliat he prefers the long-wool sorts, 
because they are more hardy. The mutton sells readily, and the wool, 
though not worth so much a pound as the fine-wool sorts, weighs so' 
much more that the value of the fleece is equal. We don't grow much 
corn, but we feed a great many roots, and feed well. It is foolish to try to 


keep any animal upon low diet. We feed anything that sheep eat best, and 
I fatten principally upon turnips and hay, with a little meal. The long-wool 
Bliuep are better adapted to Canada ^tlian the line-wool. "We shear eight 
pounds of clean wool per head. The Coiswold variety are preferred ; they 
liave stronger constitutions than the Leicester sheep." 

Gen. Harmon, of Monroe County, s;iys : " I commenced with fine-wool 
sheep, forty years ago. I then tried Leicosterehire, and then came back to 
Merino. I have less than 200 acres, and grow 30 or 40 acres of wheat every 
year ; the land improves by sheep. My average weight of fleece is five pounds. 
I keep 330 head, and get over S700 a year for wool and increase. I stable 
50 sheep in a room 14 by 40 feet, without change in the winter. I wash my 
sheep clean and let them run six or eight days, and then shear. I don't 
breed from gummy sheep. I iced in board-racks, -with straight sticks, so 
the sheep can put in their heads. Tliure are about 25 acres of reclaimed land 
on my farm that will keep sheep alive, but -won't fat them. My farm is 
limestone, and I prefer fine-wool sheep to any other for profit ; and I con- 
sider sheep twice as profitable as cattle upon any grain farm. I never 
breed from ewes less than three years old. I don't like the cross of Lei- 
cester bucks upon fine ewes. I have sold of wool and sheep over $'J00 a 

Lewis F. Allen, of Black Eock, says : " I have kejit sheep twenty-five 
yeare upon a clay loam, natural to sweet grasses, limestone formation, on the 
Niagara River. There is no general rule as to the profit of keeping sheep. 
All depends upon circumstances. In Canada I have seen the best long-wool 
sheep I ever saw, but these sheep arc too fat for eating. You might as well 
dine ofl" a cake of tallow as such meat. Such sheep may be profitable in 
Canada. With me those sheep require good shelter. They are not kept 
warm by their long fleeces. My sheep sheared five to eight pounds of wool. 
I don't approve of feeding many roots except to breeding ewes. Tiiey are 
likely to scour sheep ; at least they do mine. 

" On some soils it may be best to plow in clover ; on other soils it is not. 
As to mutlon sheep, I have fed Southdowns, and the cheapest way that I 
can make mutton is upon gi'ass, and wethers of 150 lbs. bring five cenis a 
pound gross at Buffalo. I would keep mutton sheep if I had a good farm on 
a railroad. I can always sell my lambs at $2. Jfy Southdown fleeces bring 
§1 50 average. Southdown mutton is the best we have, and the sheep 
always sell well for mutton. The fine-wool sheep mutton is apt to taste of 
the greasy wool. Tlie iferino shee]-) are a hardy race of sheep, but they are 
not a good breed to feed for mutton." 

Mr. Bowen, of Orleans Count}', says: "I have bred both coarse and fine 
sheep. I have raised coarse-wooled sheep that weighed 150 lbs. each at one 
year old. I find the coarse-wool breed the most ]irofitab]e. My sheep 
average six pounds of wool, that sells at 31 cents a lb. My sheep are a 
cross of Cotswold, and are closc-wooled and hardy. I live on a gravelly 
loam, wheat soil, and 1 think it desirable to increase the stock of sheep in 


this State. A field of clover fed off by eheep will yield more wheat than 
if not fed ofF." 

Mr. Pettibone, of Vermont, says : " If a man keeps but few sheep he 
should keep a mutton hreed. If he keeps a large flock, or say 200 or 300, 
he should keep line-wool sorts. The trouble in sheep-breeding is in letting 
them run down in October. I winter 300 head, and 100 ewes will give lUO 
lambs. I use 400 acres, but many of them are on the mountain, and valued 
at only $7 an acre. I do not let all my ewes breed. I keep my sheep in 
very close winter quarters on hay. I feed breeding ewes one peck of corn a 
day to 100 head. In eleven years I have not had a lamb die, and ewes are 
kept without grain, but always with water and salt by tbem. There is a 
material diflereuce in the value of the fleece, according to the way sheep 
are kept. I prefer always to have my sheep fixt. In January I select my 
ewes, and never sell the choice ones. I have a ewe tluit has produced 
eighteen lambs and shears four pounds of good wool. I do not select the 
most gummy sheep for my use ; they arc much more tender tlian those less 
gummy. Still, you must have greasy wool if you have fine wool. I feed 
generally twice a day— sometimes only once. The sales of my wool last 
year produced over $2 a head for my flock, and the average for fifteen years 
has been four and three quarter pounds, such as sold this year at 50 cents 
a pound. My land is limestone clay loam. I have picked out and sold 
twenty wether lambs to a neighbor Avho sheared eiglit pounds a liead, and 
sold two sheep for mutton at $3 50 a head. A flock of 300 head of sheep 
ought to average five pounds of clean wool. I select in the fall eight or ten 
wethers, and feed them with meal through the winter, and give them good 
grazing in summer, and kill through the summer, and the tallow averages 
10 or 12 lbs. and the meat 10 or 15 lbs. per quarter. The pelts sell at 75 
cents. A three-year old wether, pure Merino breed, often weighs 75 lbs. 
I have sheared 14 lbs. of wool per head from bucks, which sold for 50 cents 
a lb., and 8 lbs. of wool from ewes." 

A. B. Dickinson says : " I have sheared 11,000 sheep in a year, and know 
something of them. The man who raises sheep for mutton had better raise 
the largest kind, for they produce the most money, though they may not make 
the best kind of mutton. For wool, I would keep none but the line-wooled 
variety of sheep, but I would not keep the gummy sort, because the clean 
wool will always produce the most money. Li washing sheep, I am sure 
that the wool can always be made cleaner when the sheep are washed in a 
vat than in a stream. If 20 sheep will weigh 20 cwt., they M'ill eat just 
about as much as two bnllocks of tliat weight — that is, if they are ma- 
ture sheep. Young sheep eat more, according to live Aveight, than old 

Mr. Johnston bought thirty Lcicesters one fall, put them in his yards, fed 
them each twelve ounces of oil-meal with wheat straw, and Jio /^ay, all 
winter. In spring he sheared from them five pounds of wool each, pastured 
them all summer, kept them over until the following February, and sold 


tliein for nine iloUars and ticcnty cents each. Tliey cost him two dollais. 
Blieep fed with oil-cake meal or grain eat but little salt, make richer maiuirp, 
more wool, and more carcass. He gives usiialK' one pound of oil-meal when 
feeding with straw, and half a pound with hay. ]f there should be any 
signs of foot-rot in the fldck, he pares the hoof, and rubs into the s<Ti;s a 
salve of blue vitriol and lard. In very hot weather he mixes tar with the 
salve, to make it adhere. Sheep are never let out of the yards in winier, 
but to the yard they have free access at all times from the low, open siicl*, 
and every part of the shedc and yard are deeply bedded with clean s:ra\'.\ 
Tlie shepherd, instead of wading through a slough worse than that described 
by Eunyan, walks on a soft bed of straw, so clean at any time as cot to scil 
the white fleece of the cleanest Leicester. 

"Wm. II. Ladd, of Ohio, says: " My practice is to turn the lambs in with 
their mothers, after they have been separated some twelve hours, and assoim 
as they nurse, separate them again; then, after twenty-four hours, allov.' 
them to nurse once more. Since I have adopted this plan, I have never Imd 
a ewe's udder injured. Lambs should have a very little salt frequently, 
when first weaned, as the herbage lacks the large projiortion of salt which 
the mother's milk contains. But great care should be used not to give them 
much salt at once, or it will set them to purging; and if a lamb commences 
to purge soon after being taken from the mother, it seldom, if ever, recovers 
from it. 

" Lambs that come early arc invariably the largest, strongest, and most 
healthy ; consequently they^ are the best breeders. Tlie ewe that has Iut 
lamb early has sufficient time to get in good order before winter, and after 
the lamb is weaned, she is not subject to weakness and disease, as those of 
late weaning, and is consequently a better breeder the next season. Poor, 
late feeble lambs and ewes should never be permitted to breed, for if such 
are, it invariably follows that the flock will degenerate. Generating or 
breeding ewes should be carefully selected. Ewes sometimes continue strong 
and productive until twelve or flfteen years of age ; this depends on their 
general health and constitution." 

120. Age of Slipcp for Muttou. — A late English writer says: "A sheep, to 
be in high order for the palate of the epicure, should not be killed earlier 
than five years old, at which age the mutton will be rich and succulent, of a 
dark color, and full of the richest gravy— -whereas, if only two years old, it 
is flabby, pale, and flavorless." 

121. Grub ill Sheep. — Take one quart of whisky and two ounces of yellow 
snuflT, mix, and warm to blood-heat. Let one man hold the sheep, and 
another take a small syringe, and discharge about a teaspoonful of the mix- 
ture into each nostril. It is said to be a certain cure. 

122. Gross aud Net Weisbt of Sheep.— The usual estimate of gross and net 
weight of sheep is, that the dressed carcass will weigh one half as much rs 
the gross weight, and therefore, when the sheep are sold at, say five cents a 
pound alive, the price is equivalent to ten cents a pound for the meat, sinking 


the pelt and all tlie offal, so. that the butcher, if he could sell tlio carcass at 
cost, would still have the pelt, rough fat, head, etc., for a proiit. Ilenee it 
will be seen how it is that mutton in the carcass is often quo'ed in market 
reports at less than it appears by livestock reports to have aetuallj cost. 

123. Western Mutton. — It is one of the iucompreliensible things in "Western 
agriculture that so little attention is paid to the business of fattening sheep. 
With a vast country, as well adapted to making mutton as pork, and in many 
respects even better, it is one of the rarest things to see a farm devoted to 
the raising of sheep for their meat alone, while it is equally rare to find a 
farmer who does not raise hogs and fatten them for their pork. 

"We are aware that the "West is full of sheep, and that the business is not 
considered very profitable. There are some good flocks — in fact, some large 
flock-masters, whose principal business is to raise sheep — but it is for their 
fleece alone. Very few farmers. East or West, have ever made a business of 
making mutton. The sheep are almost entirely bred for wool, not for meat. 
And besides this, more than one half of all the sheep in the United States 
are not bred distinctly for meat or wool, but simply because they are sJieej), 
and will answer in some sort for both purposes ; but their fleece is often of 
a coai'se, unprofitable kind, and their bodies lean and liglit. Such slieep are 
natui-ally slow to acquire fat, when fed for that pnr]iose, just as their fleece 
is naturally of light weight or coarse fiber. Such sheep are not profitable, 
although so common all over the country'. 

Of all varieties of domestic animals, the flesh of sheep is least used, except 
in cities, in proportion to the quantity that is, or rather might be, profitably 
consumed. We esteem mutton almost the very best kind of meat provided 
for a civilized people. That its production would be found among the most 
profitable we have no doubt, provided a good breed of sheep were selected, 
especially for their meat-producing qualities. For this purpose we esteem 
the Southdown variety the very best. We have known flocks of fat slieep 
of this sort sold here for $25 per head. Certainly this is a paying price. 
We have several times reported sales of sheep in New York, of the long-wooled 
kind, at $12 to $20 per head, which was equal to 12 to 16 cents a pound 
for the meat. Is this a profitable price for the fiirmer, particularly the 
farmer of the West, the greatest country in the world for the production of 
pork ? 

All the long-woolod varieties of sheep, known as Bakewell, Leicester, 
Cotswold, New Oxfordshire, etc., are fat-producing animals ; that is, they 
are as naturally inclined to acquire fat as other animals are to produce only 
lean meat. In England, such mutton is much esteemed. In this country 
the lean kinds are preferred. In Ohio and other Western States there is a 
grade of sheep called common, that are as well fitted for the purposes of the 
Western farmer as any he could obtain in this country (except the South- 
downs) to breed for mutton, if careful selections were made, and some care 
exercised in breeding and feeding. It is true they are a mongrel breed, 
made up of crosses of all the varieties ever imported, but they are strong 


and hardy and long-legged, M-liicli are valuable qiialitic3 for the drover. 
Tlicir bodies, when well fatted, at two or three years old, will weigh fioni 
fifty to sixty-five pounds, and the meat is just fat enough to suit the Ameri- 
can taste. The heavier carcasses of the long-wuoled variety are generally 
too fat, thougli we think the taste for fat mutton is an acquired one, like that 
for fat i)0rk. 

But, fat or lean, mutton will always find ready sale in this city at remu- 
nerating prices. Western farmers sliould turn their attention more earnestly 
lo the subject of raising sheep, not for wool, but meat for the supply of all 
the Eastern cities. We profess to be tolerably well acquainted with the 
great prairies of the West, and fully believe that there is no branch of agri- 
culture 60 certain to produce sure and profitable returns as that of raising 
sheep of the kind we have indicated. We know of no other pursuit that 
the new settlers in Kansas could adopt at all to compare with this. Such a 
tiiwn, for instance, as Lawrence, might own a hundred thousaiid sheep, all 
of which should be kept out on the broad prairies in summer, under the care 
of shepherds and their dogs, to guard them night and day from their greatest 
enemy, the prairie wolf In M'inter they could be provided for on a hundred 
farms, under cheap shelter, with earth walls and grass roofs. They winter 
well upon well-cured wild hay, without grain, except for those in hospital, 
if fed occasionally upon any" kind of roots, such as can be grown in great 
abundance in that soil. In the fall or latter part of summer, select the best 
animals for market, and start them eastward across Iowa and Illinois, feeding 
them on cheai) grain when the grass fails on the great prairie pasture. 

The raising of cattle must be the business of Kansas settlers, and we 
believe the best of all will be mutton sheep. The new settlors, too, must for 
a time make meat their principal diet — in fact, it is the national diet of that 
region, just as vegetables are in China. We do not know of a greater act 
of folly, or a greater humbug, than inducing people to go to Kansas to 
practice the peculiar, not to say stupid, doctrine of A'egetarianism. 

What the people of the West want — -what all who grow meat and all wlio 
consume it want — is to have the great sea of prairie grass converted into 
meat — cheap meat. This should be the leading object of all emigrants to 
the West. The business of grain-growing naturally belongs to a pastoral 
people, upon old farms, rather than to new settlers. It is a subject to be 
thought of both by emigrants and old settlers, M-hich is the most profitable, 
stock or grain, and if stock, which particular kind. 

124. Sheep in Texas.— There is, or has been, a sort of mania about slieep in 
Texas. The start made a few 3'ears ago by (t. W. Kendall, and his success, 
after going through all the phases of ill luck, losses, and discouragements, 
which perseverance overcame, has induced many others to establish great 
sheep-farms in that State. j\Iajor AVm. Leland, one of the proprie;ors of 
the Metropolitan Hotel in this cit)', is one of the number who has followed 
the lead of Mr. Kendall, with every prospect of success. There is, besides 
the fine wool-flocks established in Texas, a constant and large importation 


of the coarse-wool slieep of Mexico. It is estimated that a fourth of a 
million of Mexican slieep have crossed the line into Texas since the first of 
1859, and the number is constantly increasing. These Mexican sheep are 
crossed with Nortliern stock, and make a valuable progeny, both for wool 
and mutton. We shall expect before many years more to see Texas mutton 
sheep in the New York market more frequently than we now see Texas 
beef-cattle, and tliat they will be much better liked, both by butchers and 
mutton-eaters, than the bullocks are. 

A Massachusetts correspondent wants to know more than we do about 
sheep-farming in Texas. We commend liim to Wm. AVilkinson, Comal 
Ranche, near New Braunfels, Texas. 

We don't know " what part of the State is most suitable for sheep 
husbandry," but we do know that part of it is, as above indicated, for there 
George W. Kendall and others have succeeded. 

"What breeds of shee}) are to be chosen?" We can answer: All breeds 
that have succeeded in the Northern States have succeeded in Texas. 

" What are the pecuniary advantages?" This question we can answer by 
stating that the first cost of land for a location is very small compared with 
the cost in Massachusetts, while there is a boundless range of open country 
upon which great flocks can be grazed, in charge of the shepherd and his 
dogs ; and as for winter feeding, that is not worth mentioning, and the rudest 
shelters — mere earth walls — to break the force of tlie wind, will answer at 
first in place of costly barns. Subsistence, too, for hirelings, is also quite 
inexpensive, and, taken altogether, Texas certainly appears to have many 
advantages for slieep husbandry. 

There are, to bo sure, some drawbacks. It is a long way from the great 
center of commereo to which wool must be transported, and so far as we can 
see, it is so far away from mutton-eating communities, that the meat is nearly 
valueless. We very well remember, however, when the same thing was 
true of Ohio, wliere thousands of sheep have been slaughtered for the pelts 
and fat, and the meat fed to the pigs. Now, sheep are worth in Ohio within 
a dollar wliat tliey are in New York. Time may work a similar change for 
Texas, and then it will rival all other States as a sheep-producer, for that is 
a business that can and will be conducted without slave labor. 

125. ProiiHCin'^ TwhiSc— A large sheep-breeder has declared "that sheep 
highly fed wiih meal or otlicr good provender, about the time the buck is 
with them in the fall, will almost invariably have two lambs apiece, and that 
these may nearly all be raised by proper attention to the mothers. The 
great mistake in regard to sheep is in not keeping them well enough. If 
you Avisli them to be prolific or profitable, give them plenty of the best hay 
through the winter, and meal daily, and for shelter a warm barn-cellar, 
wherein is an open tank of pure water. No kind of grain need be ground for 
feeding sheep — the hardest is thoroughly masticated and digested by them. 
The importance of good feeding is unquestionable." 

It is by no means an unheard-of thing for all the ewes of a flock to average 


twins. An average of 130 per cent, to 150 per cent, is quite usual, and with 
so:no breeds a much greater increase is tlie general rule. The sheep ofteis 
her owner more sources of protit than any other animal. First^ her natural 
increase ; second, her wool ; third, her flesh ; and this is the most imjiorlant 
of all tiic cousidcraiions connected with sheep husbandry, because a greatly 
increased consumption of the flesh of sheep will greatly promote healtli. 

Sheep " come in play" wonderfully in well-managed farms, especially such 
as are pushed to their utmost capacity, as a means of increasing fertility in 
varfous ways, feeding off green crops, such as clover or rye, previous to 
plowing tliem under, securing thus the advantage of passing the crop through 
the animal system without moving it fronr the fleld, scattering the manure 
very eveidy previous to plowing, and giving what remains of the green crop 
when plowed in the advantage of undergoing its decomposition in contact 
with animal excrements. Tiie sheep possesses other and greater advantages 
over other kinds of stock, which reconnnend it for general culture. Among 
tliese is its great fecundity. 

126. IVuinbering Sheep. — W. D. Dickinson, of Victor, Ontario Co., X. Y., 
gives, in the Stock Journal, the following plan of numbering sheep: 

"About twelve years since I commenced numbering, classifying, and 
registering my flock, which has been of great advantage to me, enabling me 
to select at all times for sale (which I invariably do myself) such as arc of 
the least value, whether with regard to age, weight of fleece, quality of 
wool, or value as breeders. 

"My method of numbering is by notches in the ear, as follows: A notch 
in tiie fore part of the left ear stands fur 1, one in the back part of the same 
for 3. With these I number up to 10 ; thus, two notches in the fore part, 2 ; 
two in the back part, C ; two in each, 8, etc. A notch in the fore part of 
the right car stands for 10, one in the back part of the same, 30. With 
these I number to 100. Tliis is as far as I have occasion to go in my flock, 
as I seldom have over 300, and consequently never have as many as 100 
lambs of each sex in one j-car. Tliis might be carried much farther by 
cutling oft" the end of the left ear for 100, and of the riglit for 200; a notch 
might then be made in the end of the left ear for 400, and in the end of the 
right for 800. 

"The age of my sheep is known by the hohs through the ears. A, hole 
through the left oar stands for 1 — tliat is, the year 1841, '51, or '01, showing 
tile year in which the sheep was born ; one in the right ear for 3, so that a 
sheep born in the year '5(3 would have two holes through the right ear; if in 
'j7, two holes tlirougli the right and one through the left ; for '58 would re- 
quire two through each, instead of which I si'nply make a notch in the end 
of the left ear; and for '59, one in the end of the right. The years '40, '50, 
'00, etc., the ears are left without anj' holes — thus connnencing anew every 
ten years, by which time those of that age are usually gone. I number my 
iambs as they are dropped, commencing each year with No. 1, both buck 
and ewe lambs. 

seo. r.] 



" My book is kept in tl 

le following manner : 

No. of 




Weight of 

Buck U3«d. 






E em ark 3. 













"In the iirst column is the number of the ewe; in the second, the year in 
which she was born ; in the third, the class denoting the quality of the wool, 
which is regulated by the number of curves to the incli ; the first containing 
24 and upward ; the second, 22 to 24 ; the third, 20 to 22 ; the fourth,- 18 to 
20. The fourth column gives the weight of the sheep when sheared ; the 
fifth, the weight of fleece ; the sixth, the number of buck used and the year 
in wliicli he was born ; the seventh, the month and day the lamb was 
dropped; the eighth, the time when the ewe was sheared; the ninth and 
tenth, the number of the buck and ewe lambs. My flock now numbers 267, 
principally breeding ewes and yearlings. My average weight of fleeces, 
wlicn well washed, is usually about 4i lbs., the quality of wool equal to me- 
dium Saxon, numbering from 20 to 28 curves to the inch, averaging about 24." 

Another plan is given as follows, for numbering sheep, which, though not 
quite as permanent as the method detailed above, may be preferred by some 
persons on the score of humanity, 

" We were handed a sheet of paper upon which was noted the weight of 
fleece of each sheep in the flock ; opposite was set the number of the sheep, 
a corresponding number having been brandetl upon the animal itself at the 
time of talcing its last clip, by applying a mixture of lampblack and tar with 
cast-iron figures. This course had been pursued for some years, and its 
I'csults were apparent in a wool crop brought up from an average of four 
poiinds to over five, and a corresponding increase in the size and quality of 
sheep. The practice had been to slaiaghter and otherwise dispose of all ani- 
mals ranking lowest in weight of fleece and to imjirove upon the quality of 
the remainder by judicious crossing." 

127. Shearing Slieep« — An old sheep-shearer, who can clip a sheep hand- 
somely in three minutes, or shear and tie np the fleece in four minutes, wlio 
has often clipped 100 sheep a day, wants us to give our readers the benefit 
of his plan of doing it. First, have two pairs of good shears; one pair to 
trim with, and the other to do the principal work, and never use dull shears. 
A good oil-stone is the best sharpener. What is termed a down-set shear, 
with blades five inches long, he considers best. In using them, never draw 
the shears backward while making the clip, but rather push forward and 
keep the shears level and close, and never clip twice in one spot, as that cuts 
tlie wool. 

To hold the sheep, have a bench as high as the lower part of the knee- 
cap ; or if the shci'p is large, it may be lower. Lay the sheep back to yon, 
with head to your right hand. Put your right knee gently on the sheep's 
neck, with its right fore leg in the bend of yours as you kneel, having tlie 
sheep close to the edge of tlie Ijench, with its back braced against jour left 


leg. Rest your left arm on the sheep's left flank, while j'ou hold its right 
iiind leg in that hand, stretched out to the edge of the bench, and holding to 
it if you wish, if the sheep is disposed to struggle. 

Commence shearing at the opening on the left side of the breast, and trim 
off all tlie wool on the belly and inside of the hind legs, and remove it to 
one side till the fleece is oflf, when the trimmings of clean wool are to be 
wrapped in it. 

To shear the body, place your left leg on the bench astride of the sheep, 
taking the jaws in your left hand, and clipping tiie foretop and right side 
of the neck, and down on the left breast. Jiieu you change position, step- 
ping back a little and raising the sheep on its hips, by catching hold of the 
left hind leg with your right hand without laying down the shears. Pull 
the sheep close to the edge of the bench and ylace your right leg between 
ils hind legs, with its neck and shoulders on your left knee, as it rests on the 
bench. Now clip over the point of the shoulder, and then straighten the 
neck with your left hand, without stopping the shears, and finish off the 
brisket and the neck, and then clip on down the side, and over the hip and 
back, letting the sheep down gradually, so as always to have the skin you 
arc clipping free of wrinkles. Now take your loft, knee ofl" the neck, and 
hold it wi:h your left hand while you remove your right leg and place the 
left one in its place, so that you can bring the right knee upon the bench, 
keeping the shears going all the time with the right hand. Then lift the 
head with the left hand, and clip that side over the point of the shoulder, 
and, raising the sheep gently, bring its head between your legs, while you 
finibh clipping. Take care that the sheep does not struggle, and when done, 
lift it clear of the fleece, so as not to tear it. Pold the fleece with all the loose 
wool that is clean inside and roll it very snug, with the cut end of the wool 
out, and tie with cotton twine, so as to look neat and bear handling without 
getting loose and ragged. 

Following the above directions, you will need to stop but twice for a mo- 
ment to turn the sheep, so that the shears are almost incessantly clipping 
from the time you begin till you have finished. 

128. Tag^ngi — One of the cares of sheep most important for their health 
and comfort is tagging, and this is most often neglected. Probably the 
only attention ever given to this matter is at shearing-time, and we have 
seen, even then, sheep sent off" out of the shearer's hands with the tag-locks 
untonched. If there is anything in farming more slovenly than this, we 
don't know what it is. 

129. To Cleanse Fine Wool. — There are a few old-fashioned houses from 
which the spinning-wheel is not yet entirely abandoned. The inmates of 
such do not always know how to cleanse the gum out of Merino wool before 
sending it to the carding-machine. Let them be sure to remember this 
direction, by which we have cleaned many a hundred-weight, some of which 
was almost as black as my hat, with dirt and gum, characteristic of all fine- 
wool sheep. 


(Pase 9T ) 

Ix this plate we present to the reader such a collection of excellent 
portraits of the most celebrated horses in America as can nowhere 
else be procm-ed. The four upper figures will be at once recognized 
as correct likenesses of animals that have won a name that makes 
them famous in equine history. That of the Justin Morgan horse 
will be found in this chapter. He is the ja-ogenitor of a fomily that 
has won the hearts of the people. Flying Childers stands as the 
representative of the race-course. Patchen and Flora Temple are 
the most noted of the great family of American fast trotters. The 
Arabian here represented is a portrait of one of the noted horses 
presented to Hon. William H. Sev/ard, and by him to the Xew York 
State Agricultural Society, and this picture gives one a good idea 
of the spirited appearance of that breed. The Cleveland Bay is the 
representative of a class of noble carriage horses which has given 
character to many of the same class in this country, particularly in 
Central Xew York. 

The Norman horse, as we see him here, gives a good idea of the 
appearance of the heavy diligence and common work-horses of France, 
having a thick neck, short, strong legs, and round, compact body, 
capable of sustaining great burdens, and pulling immense loads at 
a slow gait, as compared with some of our American fast horses. 
This breed was made quite notorious in this country by tlie import- 
ation of the late Edward Harris, of New Jersey, about twenty years 
ago. The portrait of the Canadian horse is a line representative 
of his class, which was formed by a mixture of the Xorman horses 
of the early French settlers of Canada witli some smaller breed, 
which, by neglect and exposure, and carelessness of improvement in 
breeding, has produced a race of small, hardy horses, known as 
Canadian, which are sometimes, though erroneously, called ponies. 
A careful study of these portraits will be useful to all farmers, as 
well as many other persons. 

UH'KjBHK.VT aiuuuiH <Hf HOKNK.S 

Seo. 8.] 



For 100 lbs. of wool, take four gallous of urine and eight gallons of rain- 
water; mix and heat a little above blood-heat, until the scum rises, whicli 
skim off. Keep it at the same heat in a kettle on coals or a little fire out of 
doors. Put in what wool the kettle will conveniently hold, and let it remain 
about five minutes ; take it oiit on a board that will drain the liquid back 
into the kettle, or else put it in a basket over a tub, so as not waste the liquid, 
for it will be equally good for the last batch as the first. When it is drained, 
put the basket under a stream of water running on it if convenient, or in a 
running stream if you can, or else with plenty of clear water in a large tub ; 
it will wash very easily, and be as " white as wool." 

Don't forget to sprinkle the dirty liquid upon the poorest spot in the gar- 
den, for it is a powerful manure. 

The same kind of liquid is the best thing known to take the dirt and 
grease out of any kind of foul woolen clothes or yarn. 


GENERAL history of the horse and his uses, and 
how to use liim, will not be looked for in a work 
that only professes to give little items of informa- 
tion upon a great many things. It would occupy 
a volume larger than this one to give a tolerably 
full history of the equine race, since it has been sub- 
octed to the use of man. 

mqnusis the generic name of the quadrupeds which 
ive a single digit and hoof upon each foot, as has 
the horse, ass, zebra. The horse has been a domestic 
well as a wild animal from a very early time. He 
is mentioned in Genesis as being in harness when 
Joseph transferred the remains of his father from 
Egypt to Canaan. 
Horses e.xist in a wild state in various parts of the 
globe. Tliey were once quite numerous in the tenntory embraced in some 
of our most western States. Domestication works material change, the most 
marked of which is an increase in the size of the trunk. Then follows an 
increased size of all parts, and a loss of the fleetness natural to the horse in 
his wild state. 

The Arabian horse, though domesticated by a semi-savage race, still re- 
tains some of his wild characteristics, one of which is fleetness and long 
endurance. Tlie Arab tradition in regard to the horse is, " that he was 
created out of the wind, as Adam was out of the earth." Hence, " fleet as 
the wind," is often applied to the horse. The tradition is, that the male of 
the horse was created first, as the more noble of the two, and that the horse 


was created before man, and after be was created he was told to choose the 
most beautiful of all auimals, and he chose the horse ; upon which God said 
to Adam : " You have cliosen that which is a glory to you, and will be to 
vour children." The Arabs profess to know the pure Arabian horse, the 
descendant of Zad-tl-IiaJcS, which Solomon presented to their tribe, by the 
firmness of his lips and cartilage of the lower part of the nose ; by the dilata- 
tion of his nostrils ; by the leanness of the flesh about the veins of his head ; 
br the cleu'anee of the neck and shoulders ; by the softness of his hair, mane, 
and skin; by the fullness of his breast ; by the large size of his joints; and by 
the dryness of his extremities ; and also by his moral indications, for a noble 
horse has no malice in him. lie loves his master, and frequently will suffer 
no other to mount him. lie refrains from doing what nature prompts as 
necessary while his master is on Ids back. lie will not eat food left by 
another horse. He loves to splash limpid water whenever he meets it. His 
instinct, smell, sight, hearing, intelligence, and address are all used for his 
master; and he will iight for him. Hence the Arab's love of his horse. It 
will be well for us all to remember some of the traditions of the Arab, for 
they describe valuable points in a horse. 

130. Thorougb-Bredt — This term does not appear to have any very def- 
inite meaning in this country. It is generally supposed to trace back to 
something in the way of pure blood, of a better stock than the common one 
of the coimtry ; but what that stock is, perhaps not one in ten who owns 
horses can tell. A writer in the (English) Fanner''s JIagazinc says : 

" The term thorough-bred is an expression not clearly defined as regards 
any of our domestic animals, but it would be very desirable to liave some 
rule established. It may be accepted as a principle that breeding from ani- 
mals endowed with certain properties and perfections through several gen- 
erations, constitutes the claim to distiuction ; hut there is no adopteJ riJe to 
determine how many generations arc sujfieunt to e-'iteiVlish the title.'' 

Yet, according to our understanding of tiie term, a " thorough-bred" horse 
must trace back, free from contamination of baser blood, to the pure Arabian 
stock. The original of that stock in England, S'> far as pedigrees are at- 
tempted to be trucLHl. was the " Darley Arabian," brought from " Araby the 
blest" by a Mr. Darley. That horse was the sire of Flying Childers, and 
grandsire of Eclipse, one of the most remarkable horses ever on the Knglish 
race-course. He was not what would be considered a handsome horse, by a 
breeder of Morgan stock, but his fleetness and endurance were beyond com- 
petition, and his stock have followed in his footsteps. He died at the age 
of twenty -five years, after having begotten a greater number of prize-wiu- 
ning colts than any other horse that ever lived. 

If a horse can trace back to old Eclipse, or any of his famous colts, there 
is no mistake about his being " thorough-bred." So he would be if he 
traces back to the "Godolphin Arabian," a Barb that was introduced into 
England at a later jierio 1 than the D.irlev Arabian. 

There should be some definite rule established amonij horse-breeders and 


our several State agricultural societies as to how far back and to what stock 
the pedigree of a horse should go to make him eligible to a prize as a '' thor- 

131. Eng^lish Hunters. — Tliis is a term given to a breed of English horses 
which are higli up in thorough-bred blood, with a strain of other blood 
possessing great powers of endurance. Tlie head of a hunter of perfect form 
is small ; his neck thin, particularly below ; a firm and arched crest ; jaws 
wide, and very ligiit on the bit. 

132. An Englisb Coach-Horse. — The type of this variety is the " Cleveland 
Bay," some of which have been imported into this country, and have left 
their mark upon the finest coach-horses we have iu the United States — such 
as are to be found more abundantly in Central New York, than in any other 

133. Eng^Hsh Roadsters. — ^Tlie term more common for this class in En- 
gland is "Hackney" — a term seldom heard in this country, and if heard, 
would be more likely to be understood as meaning a " hack-horse." The 
nearest type of a hackney that we have, as a distinct breed, is the Morgan horse. 

Youatt says : " A hackney is a hunler in miniature. His bight should 
rarely exceed fifteen hands and an incli. He will be sufficiently strong and 
more pleasant for general work below that standard. He should be of a 
more compact form than the hunter, of more bulk according to his hight. 
It is of essential consequence that the bones beneath the knee should be 
deep and flat, and the tendon not tied in. The pastern should be short, and 
less oblique or slanting than that of the hunter or race-horse. Tlie foot 
should be of a size corresponding with the bulk of the animal — neither too 
hollow nor too flat, and open at the heels. The forelegs should be jierfectly 
straight; for a horse with his knees bent will, from a slight cause, and espe- 
cially if overweighted, come down. The back should be straight and short, 
yet sufiiciently long to leave comfortable room for the saddle between the 
shoulders and the luck without pressing upon either. Some persons prefer 
a hollow-backed horse. It is generally an easy one to go. It will canter 
well with a lady, but it will not carry a heavy weight, or stand much hard 
work. Tlie road-horse should be high in the forehead, round in the barrel, 
and deep in the chest." 

13-i. The English Dray-Horse. — Tliere is a variety of horses known as the 
dray-horse, or more generally in this country as the English cart-horse ; a 
very heavy, strong, slow-gaited horse, originated by a cross of the Flanders 
or ISTorman horse Mith the Suffolk Punch, a sorrel horse of fifteen or sixteen 
hands high, with low, rounded shoulders ; thick on the top ; low back ; 
deep, round chest ; long back ; high croup ; large, strong quarters ; full 
flanks ; round legs, and short pasterns. This is a good description of a 
strong work-horse. We have something like it, though rather increased in 
size, in the Pennsylvania wagon-horse. 

135. Morgan Horses. — Tlie most distinct strain of American horses — in 
fact, the only one which assumes the character of a race — is that now widely 


known as the Morgan. Tlie origin of this race is given in the following ex- 
tracts from letters written by a son and a relative of the original owner of the 
old Morgan horse: 

TLo following is an extract from a letter of Justin Morgan, originally 
furnished for the Cultivator (vol. ix., p. 99), dated Stockbridge, Yt., March 
1, 1843. After stating that his father owned the horse from which the race 
of Morgan horses sprung, he says : 

" I will now relate the facts relative to said Morgan horse as I recollect 
them. My father, Justin Morgan, brought said horse, or rather said colt, 
into Randolph, Vt., in the summer or autumn of 1795. Said colt was only 
two yc;ii-s old when my lather brought him to Randolph, and had never 
been handled in any way, not even to be led by a halter. My father went 
to Spriiigtield, Mass., the place of his nativity, and the place from which he 
removed lo Randolph, in the spring or summer of 1795, after money that 
was due to him at that place, as he said ; and instead of getting money, as 
he expected, he got two colts — one, a three-year-old gelding colt, which he 
led ; the other, a two-year-old stallion colt, which followed all the way from 
Springfield to Randolph ; having been, as my father said, always kept with 
and much attached to the colt he led. Said two-year-old colt was the same 
that has since been known all over New England by the name of the Morgan 
horse. My father broke said colt himself, and, as I have before remarkuJ, 
owned and kept him to tlie time of his decease, which took place in March, 
179S, and said horse was five years old the spring my father died ; and, as 
before stated, soon after my father's decease, he passed from my father's 
estate into the possession of Wm. Rice, of Woodstock, Vt. I can not state 
positively that my father purchased said colt in Springfield, Mass., but I am 
very confident that he purchased him in that town or in the immediate 
vicinity, on Connecticut River." 

"We next ofler an extract from a letter of John Morgan (see Cultivator, 
vol. ix., p. 110), in which it will be seen that the material points set forth 
by Justin Morgan are confirmed, and some further light given in regard to 
the blood of the first Morgan horse. John Morgan resides at Lima, New- 
York, and is, we believe, a relative of Justin Morgan, Sr., and was a near 
neighbor of the latter previous to his removal from Springfield to Vermont. 
In reference to the colt above desciibed by Justin Morgan (2d), John Mor- 
gan says : " lie was sired by a horse owned by Sealy Norton, of East Hart- 
ford, Conn., called the 'True Briton, or Beautiful Bay.' lie was kept at 
Springfield one season by the said Justin Morgan [Sr.], and two years after, I 
kept him two seasons. This horse was said to have been raised by General 
Delancy, commander of the refugee troops on Long Island, and rode by him 
in the Revolution. It was said that one Smith stole the horse from the 
General at King's Bridge, while the General was in the tavern ; ran him 
across the bridge and took him to the American army, near AVhite Plains, 
and sold him to Joseph Ward, of Hartford, Conn., for $300. It was also 
said at that time that he was sired by the imported horse called ' Traveler,' 


said to have been kept in Kew Jersey. Ward was a mts-chant, and kept tlie 
liorse three or four years for a saddle and carriage horse, and then traded 
him off to Norton, and Norton kept him for marcs wliile he lived. The 
description of the Morgan breed given by Mr. G. Barnard {Cultivuior, vol. 
ix., p. 33), answers well to the stock of ' True Briton.' I have always under- 
stood that Morgan kept the colt for a stallion at Randolph, and was very 
celebrated for his stock." 

The above statements of Justin and John Morgan comprise, as we believe, 
the true history, so far as it is known, of the origin of tlie far-famed Morgan 
horses. From tlie position of the Messrs. Morgan, they have had the best 
jjossible facilities for obtaining correct information on this subject, and we 
are not aware of anything which should hinder their statement from receiv- 
ing full credence. 

" Of the old Morgan's progeny, three became famous as stallions, viz., the 
Slierman Morgan, the Woodbury or Burbank, and the Chelsea. Of these 
the Sherman Morgan was greatly the most distinguished. I have ascer- 
tained to a certainty that he died in the winter of 1835. Black Hawk was 
sired by him." 

130. Black-Hawk MorganSi — Fifteen years ago, S. W. Jewett, of Vermont, 
wrote of these as follows : 

" I believe the Morgan blood to be the best tliat was ever infused into the 
'Xorthern horse.' They are well known, and are esteemed for activity", 
iiardiness, gentleness, and docility throngliout the New England States ; 
well adapted for all work; good in every spot, except for racers on the turf. 
They are lively and spirited, loftj' and elegant in their action, carrying them- 
selves gracefully in the harness. They have size in proportion to hight ; 
bone clean; sinewy legs; compactness; short, strong backs ; powerful lungs; 
strength and endurance. A mixture of the Morgan blood, tliough small, 
may be easily known from any other stock in the country. There is a re- 
markable similarity prevailing in all of this race. They are known by their 
short, lean heads, wide across the face at the eyes ; eyes lively and prom- 
inent ; open and wide in the under jaws, large windpipe, deep brisket, 
heavy and round in the body, broad in the back, short limbs in proportion 
to size, broad quarters; a lively, quick action; indomitable spirit; move 
true and easy in a good round trot ; fast on the walk. Color : dark bay, 
chestnut, brown or black, with dark flowing wavy mane and tail ; head u]), and 
move without a whip ; about fifteen hands high ; action powerful and spirited. 

'•They are highly celebrated for general usefulness, make the best of 
roadsters, and live to a great age. In fact, they are the perfect ' Yankee 
harness horse.' 

" The Morgans are very like the noble Arab, with similar eyes, upright 
ears, high withers, powerful quarters, hocks well placed under their weight, 
vigorous arms and flat legs, short from the knee to the pastern, close jointed, 
possessing immense power for their size, with great fire and courage. But 
a few of the Morgans, however, evince extraordinary speed. 


" It is eaid that the best stock of horses in the New England States are 
found among tlie progeny and descendants of the Sherman Morgan, wliicli 
was owned hy Mr. Bellows, of Vermont. 

" Tlie figure given on another page is a portrait of Black Hawk, ' a colt 
of the Sherman Morgan, which was got by the old Justin Morgan horse. 
The dam of Black Hawk was a three-quarter-blooded English mare, raised 
in the province of New Brunswick. She could trot a mile in less than three 
minutes, and weighed 1,025 lbs., and was in every respect a most perfect 

" Black Hawk was bred by Mr. Mattliews, of Durham, N. II. lie is a 
jet-black color; weighs, in good flesh, 1,01011)3.; his hight is fifteen liands 
and one inch. A line drawn from the hip even with the ham, just below 
the setting on of the tail, is four inches longer than the back, or the distance 
from the hip to the withers. A line dropped perpendicular from the nock, 
parallel with the fore leg, is nineteen inches forward of the junction of the 
withers. The distance between the hip and the ribs is only one and a half 
inches. He has a broad and vigorous arm, fat and clean leg, large mnsclcs, 
short from the knee to the pastern, large windpipe and nostril, well open 
when under motion. He is one of the best i)roportioned and most elegant 
moving horses that can be produced. He is perfectly sound, a close-jointed, 
clean-limbed animal, and carries a beautiful waving head, mane, and tail. 
His legs are flat and hard, clean from long hairs on the fetlock ; his eyes 
stand out prominent ; his disposition kind aud playful. He keeps fat with 
very little feed of oats and bran, three quarts of each daily, and five or six 
pounds of timothy each day. 

" No fault can be found with the horse, nnlcss it be in his size ; however, 
his stock are suflicicntly large for roadsters and for general usefulness in 
this State." 

137. The Faults of the Morgan HorsCi — Of the Morgan horses as they 
were at the lime Mr. Jewett wrote, particularly the Black Hawk strain of 
the blood, we have no fault to find — we rather indorse his statement. But 
fifteen years have wrought a change. As a general thing, Morgan horses 
have been bred too much in-and-in, and without regard to size. They are 
no longer " lofty" in proportion to the weight, but, on the cotitrary, arc 
" squatty," and to the eye of a good judge of horses, far less attractive than 
they were formerly. What is needed, is an infusion of blood of a taller race 
— such as gave character to the Black Hawks. Wherever they have been 
crossed with Messenger stock, Cleveland Bay, or othei'S of similar form, the 
improvement has been marked, and some of the very finest roadsters and 
carriage-horses have resulted. The Morgans, crossed upon other good 
breeds, do not improve those as much as it improves theirs. It is still a 
favorite breed of horses in New England, but not as much so as it was some 
years ago. The uniform color of the family has been a great recommenda- 
tion, and there has been also a greater degree of general beauty in the Mor- 
gan family of horses than in any other ever extensively bred in this country. 


We shall now give a few useful items for owners of horses of whatever 
breed, mongrel or thorough-bred. 

138. Driving — The Start. — The first mile is the most important of the jour- 
ney. More horses are injured in the start than in the balance of the whole 
<iay. You should carefully avoid rapid driving immediately after a horse 
has been full fed. Many old travelers feed over-night all the grain they 
intend the horse to eat in the twenty four hours. Others feed at night and 
at noon, and then give time after the horse has eaten hia mess before start- 
ing, or else drive very slowly for an hour, making up time as night 
approaches. In all cases when a horse has been fed and watered an hour or 
two before starting upon a jonrney or di-ive of several miles, it is proper to 
drive slowly for the first mile or two ; but when the feeding and watering 
have been more recent, the propriety of going along at a jog or easy pace 
is still more urgent. Colic, founder, broken wind, have all of them resulted 
from too rapid driving when a horse was full. A friend of ours, a pliysi- 
cian, who had occasion sometimes to violate this dictate of good manage- 
ment in his haste to reach some case of great urgency, once informed us 
that when he drove at a rapid rate immediately after feeding, his horse 
would scour almost invariably, and seem to suffer considerably. 

Even in such cases where a horse must be driven upon a full stomach, it 
is better to divide the distance into equal parts — say ten miles, which you 
intend to drive in an hour, and give forty minutes to the first half, and do 
the other five in twenty minutes. In that case be careful, when j'ou stop, 
not to leave the horse to cool suddenly. If the weather is hot, and you have 
driven hard, don't mind trying to get your horse in a cool shade. The sun 
won't hurt him. 

There is another great error in driving which has often been suggested to 
us. It is that of constantly urging a horse to exert himself beyond what is 
natural to him. For instance, if a horse is urged to perfbi-ni in t^^'t) hours 
a distance that he would, at his natural pace, require three hours to do, it 
will injure him more than four hours' driving at his regular pace; and if 
this urging is continued all daj', he will break down, just as a man would, if 
urged to double his speed in walking. 

139. Size of Roadsters. — A road horse should be about fifteen hands high 
(a hand being four inches), measured from the top of the shoulder or withers 
to the ground, when the horse stands naturally ; his weiglit should be about 
1,000 lbs. ; for such weight in an animal fifteen hands high, in moderate 
flesh, indicates compactness and power somewhere. Experience has proved 
tliat horses of this size carry their weight better on long journeys, injure 
their feet less on the pavements and hard roads, and are apt to be more fleet 
than those of a larger class ; for while greater length and hight will give an 
increased stride, either running or trotting, the power to gather rapidly, and 
especially for long distances, requires much greater muscular exertion in 
large than in small horses, from the greater weight to be propelled. Our 
fastest trotters have generally been from this class. 


140. talking Horses. — Tlie best gait a horse ever had for everj-day use 
is a good walk. It is a gait that not one in ten possesses. Colts are not 
trained to walk in all the Eastern States. Young America wants more speed. 
Kentiickj has more good walking horses than any other State, for there hoi-se- 
back traveling has long been in fashion fur men and women over a country 
where muddy roatls, at some seasons, rendered afiy other gait impossible, and 
60 horses have been bred for the saddle and trained to a walking gait. This 
is also the case in all the "Western States, and perhaps might have been so in 
Kew England, when our grandmothers rode to meeting on a pillion behind our 
grandfathers. But one-horse wagons have put horseback riding out of fashion, 
and now a good walking horse is more rare than one that can trot a mile in 2.40. 

At the Springfield (Mass.) horse show of ISCO, the writer was one of a 
committee to award prizes to the two best walking horses. Out of seven- 
teen entered, the committee found but one which was considered a first-rate 
walker. This was a Morrill mare, which walked live miles an liour with ease. 
Two others were fair walkers, and the others knew no gait that could be 
called walking. At the New York State Fair the same state of facts was 
agiin developed. A letter from Wisconsin says : " I think horses trained to 
walk fast would be a greater benefit to farmers in general than fast trotters, 
as almost ail of his work has to be done with a walk. I once knew a man 
in Massachusetts who, before the railroads were built, kept from two to four 
teams at work on the road, and never allowed them to trot at all, and made 
the distance in quicker time than his neighbors, who made their horses tvot 
at every convenient place. He said that when a horse commenced to walk 
after a trot, he walked much slower than his common gait if kept on a walk, 
and thereby lost more than he gained." "Will farmers think of this, and pay 
more attention to walking horses ? 

141. lustrumeiiCs of Torture Used by Horsemen. — Tlie following sensible 
remarks are from the Irii^h J^urnwr^s Gazette. They are quite applicable 

" Tlie good old English roadstei-'s style of walk, trot, or canter is too steady 
for your fast young man ; he thinks it far beneath him to speak a kindly 
word to his horse, or to control him by an easy signal ; and however quiet 
the horse may be, he is rarely seen on his back without at leastyoio' uuncc- 
esT^ary instrinnents of torture — namely, two spure with sharp rowels, one 
whip, and a severe curb bridle. Why should it be the universal custom in 
this country for men armed with these cruel instruments of torture to ride 
quiet, docile horses, and often punish them for a fanciful fault which they 
themselves bring about by their own want of experience and knowledge of 
the horse's nature ? 

" If a man has not the ability to handle a horse lightly, and at the same 
time keep his balance in the saddle, he lias no business to ride one of value 
and high courage. It would be better for the horse and safer for the man 
to keep his feet on terra firnia. 

"Tlie more a horse's mouth is used to a severe bit, the less he will care 


for it, as be will soon learn to neutralize its effects hy pulling and keepinc 
the reins in a state of tension, and thereby pievent the rider from cheeking 
or wriggling the bit — to punish him. The dead, steady pull is far less pain- 
ful to him tlian the jaw-breaking the rider would be able to inliict upon him 
if allowed to keep his reins slack and ready for a jerk. 

" One of the many causes which makes pulling horses is the unsteady seat 
of their riders. Many men can not ride a light-mouthed horse, but they can 
sit a puller with ease, because the firm hold this horse allows them to have 
on the reins is the main thing upon which they depend to keep their balance. 

"I have seen the most inveterate pullers in some people's hands ridden in 
bits invented by their owners, regular jaw-breaking or choking power, and 
still pulling so hard as to tear the skin of their rider's hands. And I have 
no hesitation in saying — having frequently proved my assertions by prac- 
tice — that if one of these tear-away pullers changed hands, and his new 
owner would bridle him with an easy snaffle, and let him stand in the stable 
— to feel the difference— an hour before he was mounted he would forget his 
old habit." 

142. Saddle-IIorses.— One of the meanest things ever taught a saddle- 
horse is to cavort and curve, and go dancing and prancing about as though 
trying to keep within a circle ju?t large enough to hold his four feet closely 
drawn together. If you are selecting a saddle-horse, see that he does not 
stand square upon his forward feet. They should reach avcII forward, and 
then there will be such an easy spring that you may ride at a smart trot 
without feeling as though you are struck with a sledge at every step, as you 
may upon some horses Mdiose hoofs are square under the legs, and appear to 
have about the same degree of spring that you would have upon wooden 
pins stepping along, and brought down at every step like a pavier's rammer. 
Never select a very round-backed horse for the saddle. It does not hold 
its place well upon such a back. A good saddle-horse must possess good 
sense as well as a good gait and gentleness. 

143. Color Indicative of Gentleness. — It is asserted that the reason why 
circus managers select parti-colored horses is not their fancy color, but be- 
cause it indicates gentleness and tractability, and that the animals will 
submit to training better than horses of one color. A little thought and 
observation upon this subject will enable any farmer to settle the question 
in his own mind. Perhaps there is more than appears at first view in the 
common expression, " a fiery black horse." Is it not because black indi- 
cates a fiery temper ? Independent of color, we would look in the counte- 
nance of a horse to see whether he would bear training. In some animals 
there is a general appearance of an ugly disposition. A face broad and full 
between the eyes indicates good sense, which is one of the most important 
things in a horse. 

144. Horse Stables should be light, roomy, and well ventilated. Never 
put a horse in a cellar. Build your stables high ; that is, high between 
floors. M(jst stables are built low " because they are warmer." But such 


people forget tliat warmtli is obtained at a sacrifice of pure air and the 
liealtli of the animal. Shut . man up in a tight, small bo.x ; the air may 
be warm, but it will soon lay him out dead and cold if hs continues to 
breathe it. If stables arc tiglit, they should have high ceilings; if they 
are not tight, but o^jcu to admit cold currents of air from all directions, they 
are equally faulty. 

Slatted floors are getting into vogue. My own stable is built with a tight 
floor nine feet long and four and a half feet wide for each stall, with a pitch 
of two inches. At the end of the plank there is a slatted portion, four feet 
wide, two inches lower than the plank. Through these sluts all the urine 
runs into the manure pile in the cellar, and so leaves the beds of the horses dry. 

145. Sand for Horses' Beds. — Mr. Small, of Dundalk, Scotland, a veteri- 
nary surgeon of considerable experience, states that sand is not only an ex- 
cellent substitute for straw for horses' beds, but superior to straw, as the 
sand does not heat, and saves the hoofs of the horses. lie states that sand is 
exclusively used for horses' beds in liis repository. 

I-IG. To Remove Horses from a Building on Fire. — Tlie great difliculty of 
getting horses from a stable, where surrounding buildings are in a state of 
conflagration, is well known. Wilkes' Spirit of the Times says, a gentleman 
whose horses had been in great peril from such a cause, having in vain tried 
to save them, hit upon the experiment of having them harnessed, when, to 
his astonishment, they were led from the stable Avithout difliculty. Throw- 
ing a blanket over a horse's head will often answer, also, and may be easily 
tried before harnessing. 

147. Proportion of Horses lo Men. — The following curious account is given 
in Appleton's Encyclopedia, of the number of horses in the various parts of the 
world : " The general estimate has been eight to ten horses in Europe for every 
hundred inhabitants. Denmark has 45 horses to every hundred inhabitants, 
which is more than any other European country. Great Uritain and Ire- 
land have 2,500,000 horses ; France, 3,000,000 ; Austrian Empire, exclusive 
of Italy, 2,500,000 ; Russia, 3,500,000. The United States have 5,000,000, 
which is more than any European country. The horses of the whole v/orld 
arc estimated at 57,420,000." 

14S. M'hat Constitutes Legal Unsoundness in Horsesi — A Knee-fiprung horse 
can hardly be said to be unsound. lie may be a very fast horse, and can 
endure with ease the labor of anj' common, ordinary horse, although there 
is an alteration of structure which unfits him for the race-course. Tliis 
would not be likely to produce disease or lameness ; he would be more 
likely to grow better than worse, if used for common puq^oses. But if so 
bad as to produce stumbling and falling, he would be unsound, and a wai-- 
ranty should be taken against such defects. 

Capped Iloeks can not be considered unsoundness, if produced by an un- 
even stable floor or by kicking ; but if produced by a sprain, and a perma- 
nent thickening and enlargement of the membranes, there would be unsound- 
ness. A sj^ecial warranty should be required in such cases. 



It <i KM I'^.s ^I'lKF.TH .vi' <,Hy ywnwyr Af'.K.s . 


(Pages 106, 107.) 

These plates need no description ; they require study. As they 
contain all that could be said to fully understand the subject illus- 
trated, we have written nothing about the art of "telling the age 
of horses by examining their teeth." Whoever studies these plates 
will learn that art. Observe the steady change, year by year, as 
it is mapped out before you. Open the mouth of your horse, and 
compare its appearance with the illustration of the year correspond- 
ing to his known age, and so on of all others. Thus you will learn 
the art and the value of these engraved representations. 


Contraction of the Hoof is a considerable deviation from the natural form 
of the foot, but does not necessarily constitute unsoundness. It requires, 
liowever, a most careful examina'jon by the purchaser to ascertain that there 
is no fever or ossification of the cartiLige ; that the frog is not diseased ; that 
the animal is not tender-footed or lame. Unless some of these symptoms 
are indicated, he must not be pronounced unsound. A special warranty 
should be required where the feet are contracted. 

Co7'ns manifestly constitute unsoundness. Although few men lay much 
stress on this malady, still much iuconvenience, and many times serious 
difficulties, must be encountered by them, as they are seldom thoroughly 
cured. Many horses are almost constantly lame with corns, through a scrof- 
ulous habit of the system. A warranty against such animals would be safe. 

TremWmg Knees. — This can not be considered unsoundness, yet it is a 
precursory symptom of Icnec-sprung. Trembling of the knees, after a smart 
exercise, indicates weakness, and should be regarded as objectionable. 

A Cough constitutes unsoundness, however slight or of short standing. 
If a horse is noticed to cough before the purchase, or immediately after- 
ward, he is diseased ; but if warranted sound, and the cough is not discov- 
ered till one or two days afterward, he is not returnable; for a few hours arc 
sufficient to contract a cough, by taking cold while standing in a damp, 
musty stable, or by eating different feed, musty hay, etc. 

Roaring, Wheezing, or Whistling is unsoundness, being the result of alter- 
ation of structure or disease in the air-passages. Although there have been 
decisions to the contrary, courts and jurors are often at a loss for the want 
of intelligent witnesses ; and if a veterinary surgeon is called to the stand, 
not having seen the animal, he is liable to be mistaken from misrepresenta- 
tion. Broken Wind is still more decidedly unsoundness. 

Crii Biting. — A difference of opinion exists as to this being unsoundness, 
and courts have given opposite decisions in respect to it. There are cribbers 
that can scarcely be said to be unsound, as they are not perceptibly injured, 
and it does not interfere M'ith their condition or endurance. Others inhale 
and swallow a great amount of wind ; they bloat and are subject to colic, 
which interferes with their health and strength ; this would constitute un- 
sinindness. A warranty should always be taken against injury from crib- 
bing ; then if he breaks his teeth or injures himself, recompense may be had. 

Curh constitutes unsoundness as long as it lasts, and perhaps while the 
swelling remains, although no inflammation exists ; for a horse that has once 
tlirown out a curb, is liable to do so again on the slightest exertion. A 
horse, however, should not be returned if he s])ring a curb five minutes after 
purchase, for it is done in a moment, and does not indicate any previous 

l-i9. Soiling Horses. — TVe commend the following statement of J. C. Ad- 
ams, of Seymour, X. Y., to the attention of all owners of small farms, like 
the little one where we practice the same course : 

"I have in close proximity to my barn a patch of ground, 7^ rods by 16 


(three quarters of an acre), seeded to clover, from which I kept one span of 
horses in thriving condition from the first day oi June last to tlie last day 
of August, besides cutting 900 lbs. of good hay, which I put into the barn, 
and harvested of the second mowing seed sufficient to stock an acre or two 
of ground. This may, and undoubtedly will, seem to many like a big barn 
well stretched. In fact, I should doubt the reality of such a story myself, had 
not my eyes seen and my hands felt the truth of such a statement. By the 
time I had mowed two thirds of this little patch, the remainder was fit to be 
made into hay, which I accordingl}- did up after the most approved fashion. 
And that part mowed first was sufficiently large to mow again. I fed them 
three times a day all they could eat. They smelt not, touched not, tasted 
not one particle of grain during the three months ; used them more or less 
every day, and at the end there was a perceptible gain in flesh. Kever, 
since I could say 7)}i/ team, have I summered a team so cheaply. Tlie great- 
est cost is cutting and putting it before the horses. I offered them Avater, 
but they did not drink to exceed a pailful a week. 

" I am of the opinion that if they had been turned loose npon this piece 
of ground, ten days would have been sufficient time to eat up and trample 
into the earth everything green upon it. As five acres of good pasture is 
little enough to summer a span of horses when allowed to run, there is almost 
an incalculable saving in soiling them." 

150. Brecdiug for Loilgovlty. — We have had a few instances of horses liv- 
ing to the age of thirty years, but they are so rare, that such an old horse is 
Tooked upon as a curiosity. Lewis B. Brown, of Westchester County, N. Y., 
has a team of four, the aggregate age of which is lOS years, the oldest being 
over 30 years, and all in such vigor of constitution that but few teams can 
hold their own with this upon the road. The exhibition of this old team at 
t!ie Springfield show, in 1860, attracted universal attention. This sIkiws that 
such old horses are rare, and it proves that old horses are not worthless. It 
also induces the question, whether we can not breed with a special reference 
to longevity. If selections were made npon both sides, of stock which hail 
ancestors noted for longevity, and this course continued througli several 
generations, with mares and stallions which have arrived at mature age, still 
re:aining a vigor like that exhibited in Mr. Brown's team, who can say that 
we should not obtain a breed noted for longevity, and that horses forty or 
fifty years old would then be no rarity ? This is a subject worth thinking 

151. Trealmcnt of foMs, — AVhcn fii-st foaled, if parturition is at maturity, 
the colt should have eight front teeth, four in each jaw ; but it sometimes 
happens that these are not all cut through, and the gums are inflamed and 
so tender that the colt can not suck well. Tiiis should always be looked to, 
and the gums cut with a sharp knife, and, if need be, the colt fed until it can 
suck freelj'. 

Colts as well as calves are sometimes aflPected by lice ; these may be got rid 
of in various ways. Take white-oak bark, boil it in water, making a strong 


decoction ; wash tlie animals on the bade and on the sides. In twenty-four 
hours the lice will be completely tanned. Tanner's oil is also first-rate. So 
is snuff or a decoction of tobacco ; and we have heard of Peruvian guano 
being used and answering the same pur2)ose as snuff. 

152. Remedies for Some of ihe most Commoa Diseases of Horsesi — There 
are a great many little simple complaints that can be cured without sending 
for a veterinary surgeon. "We can afford room for only a few, because every 
farmer should take an agricultural paper, and such papers are stored with 
valuable remedies such as the following : 

153. To Cure ScratcheSo — When the horse comes in at night, his legs 
should be washed clean and rubbed as dry as may be ; then apply good 
vinegar, rubbing it Avell to the skin. Two applications a day are sufficient. 
1 have always found it a sure preventive and a certain cure. If the legs 
have become cracked and sore, apply the vinegar freely and add a piece of 
copperas the size of a common hickory nut to a quart of vinegar. 

Another excellent remedy, which we have used a great many times, is 
beef brine. If the dirt is carefully washed off with warm soap-suds, and then 
the legs well bathed with the brine, it will require but two or three applica- 
tions to cure a very bad case of scratches. 

The Maine Farmer gives another remedy. It says : " Take fresh slaked 
lime, and dust the affected parts well with it twice a day. It will not cause 
the horse any uneasiness, and will be sure to effect a cure in a ic:\Y days. 

15-1. For Heaves in liorses. — Take smart-weed, steep it in boiling water till 
the strength is all out ; give one quart every day for eight or ten days. Or mix 
it with bran or shorts. Give him green or cut-up feed, wet up with water, 
during the operation, and it will cure. 

155. ChaGag Uader the Collar. — A gentleman who has tried the plan suc- 
cessfully for five years, communicates the annexed method of preventing 
horses from chafing under the collar. He says he gets a piece of leather, and 
has what he terms a false collar made, which is simply cutting the leather 
in such a shape as to lie singly between the shoulders of the horse and the 
coUai". This fends off all the friction, as the collar slips and moves on the 
leather, and not on the shoulders of the horse. Chafing is caused hj fric- 
tion, hence, you see, the thing is entirely feasible. Some persons put pads 
or sheep-skins under the collar ; thCse, they say, do as mucli hurt as good, 
for they augment the heat. A single piece of leather, like that composing 
the outside of a collar, without any lining or stuffing, is better than anv- 
thing else. 

156. For Fistula. — Salt, one tablespoonful ; soft soap, one tablespoonful ; 
whisky, one tablespoonful ; turpentine, one tablespoonful. Mix in a tin 
cup ; place on the horse's nose a twitch, to prevent his moving ; have your 
mixture placed on a little fire, and as soon as it boils up, pour immediately 
upon the diseased part ; repeat the operation every ten or twelve days, till ap- 
plied three or four times, if necessary. It will not take off the hair or leave 
any scar. 

110 DOMESTIC AinSTALS. [Chap. I. 

Tliis is not more eifectual tlian the following: much simpler remedy, which 
we have proved for bo'th fistula and poll-evil. Take a lump of potash 
or saleratus, as big as you can crowd into the pipe of the fistula, and it 
causes it to discharge more freely for a day or two, and then it begins to 
heal. In one case of poll-evil, a large mare would not allow any one to 
touch her head to apply the reuiedy, or in fact to be bridled. For this case 
we took about two ounces of saleratus and tied it in a cloth, in the form of a 
pad, inside the strap of a halter, where it crossed the top of the head, and by dint 
of perseverance succeeded at length in getting it on and firmly secured, when 
we bid her go and live or die, as she liked — we would do no more for her. 
A shower fell soon after, and the next time we saw our patient she was par- 
tially healed : the caustic had taken the liair off, and it had also affected the 
disease. A fortnight later we caught her, and found she did not object to 
being handled. The disease was cured, and (he mare was worth a hundred 
dollars. When tui'ned out, she could not have been sold for a hundred 
cunts, and the cure had not cost five cents. 

Here is another remedy which may be tried, if it is preferred to the other. 
Tiic following is sent us as a valuable prescription for several of the ills that 
horse-flesh is heir to, such as fistula, poll-evil, ring-bone, big head, etc. : 
12 oz. of alcohol, 1 oz. of spirits of turpentine, 1 oz. of corrosive sublimate, 
1 oz. of camphor gum, 1 oz. of oil of spike, 1 oz. of castile soap, 1 oz. of aqua- 
fortis — mixed and dissolved, and applied with a swab for a day or two, and 
then intermixed, and apply again. Take care only to touch the jiart af- 
fected; and, to prevent injury to the hair or hoof adjacent, rub it well with 

157. White Lead, its Value on Sores. — W/iiie lead in oil, as an external 
application or remedy, has no equal. In abrasions, or galls from the sad- 
dle or collar, or from any other cause, it will speedily aid the part in healing. 
Applied to the leg of a horse — the outer coating of hair and skin of which 
was torn off — with a painter's brush, caused it to heal and leave no scar. It 
is good for scratches and all sores upon horses or other animals, and equally 
good for men. It forms an air-tight coating, and soothes pain. Every farmer 
should keep a pot and brush ready for use, and he should not fail to apply it 
to all abraded spots on tools, as well as stock. White lead is the carbonate 
of the metal, and, when pure, is very white. That having a grayish tint is 
impure, being generally adulterated. For use as a paint, a lead color is 
produced by adding lampblack, and a drab or stone color, by adding burnt 

158. Liniment for Sweeney in Horses.— One oz. of oil of spike, 1 oz. of oil 
of amber, 1 oz. of Venice turpentine, and a small quantity of rock-oil. 

159. Blind Staggers. — This disease is more common in the Southern than 
it is in the Northern States. The Cotton Planter newspaper gives the fol- 
lowing remedy : " Take 1 gal. of green hickory wood ashes, 1 half pint of 
spirits of turpentine, 1 oz. of gum camphor, and a sufficiency of lye to make 
a thin mush. Fill a horn with this mush, while boiling hot, and with a thin 


cloth stretched over the end of the horn, apply it four times upon or over 
the region of the brain, each time filling the liorn with the boiling mnsh, 
which will blister the skin. In connection with this, it is necessary to burn 
rags wet with spirits of turpentine imder the horse's nose until you produce 
a free discharge. You should also bleed freely from the neck, and give one 
pint of linseed-oilas a purge. 

160. How to Detect Imperfect Vision or Blindness in Horses.— Tou may 
have good grounds for suspicion of imperfect vision when the horse moves 
liis ears in a constant and rapid motion, directing them in quick succession 
to every quarter from whence the least sound proceeds. Also if his action is 
lofty and faltering, and he lifts up his feet and replaces them on the ground 
as if stepping over some obstacle, when there is actually nothing to impede 
his free progression, notwithstanding these symptoms would be sufiicicnt to 
create suspicion, there are other causes by which similar symptoms Avould 
appear in horses. If a horse with perfect eyes were led from a dark stable 
i:ilo the sunshine, the sudden contraction of the pupil of his eye would 
render it impossible, for a few moments, for him to see but very indistinctly ; 
hence symptoms of uncertainty in his movements, until the pupil becomes 
steady after the sudden contraction. The dilating and contracting of the 
pu]iil furnish means of ascertaining whether blindness exists in one eye or 
both, as this pupil varies in size according to the degree of light which is 
brought to bear upon it. In a dark stable the pupil is expanded, so that a 
greater portion of light falls upon the cornea ; but if the horse is led to the 
door of the stable, the pupil will contract bo as to exclude more light than 
could be endured, and if suddenly exposed to the sun, the aperture will be 
all but closed; therefore carefully notice the eyes, whether they contract or 
expand equally by the increase and decrease of the light. If the horse 
should be examined in the open air, notice whether both pupils are of ex- 
actly the same size. After this, carefully place the hand, so as not to alarm 
the horse, over each eye, to shade off tlie light, and hold it there for a short 
time, noticing the extent to which the pupil dilates ; then pass the hand 
over the other eye, and ascertain whether it also dilates to the same extent, 
and if still it be uncertain, place both hands in the positions of shades over 
both the eyes of the horse, and you will at once perceive whether they are 
perfect, and if not, which of the two is imperfect. 

Nothing tends more to injure the eyes of a horse than dark or badly venti- 
lated stables. Attention to the lighting, draining, and ventilation of horse 
stables is an imperative duty. There are thousands of stables in which the 
door is the only aperture for the ingress or egress of pure air, and even this 
is in most instances closed, both when the horse is at rest, or at work or ex- 
ercise; thus he has, while in the stable, to constantly breathe vitiated air. 

161. Remedy for GaHs on Horses. — Use whisky, saturated with alum, 
to wash the parts liable to chafe, which tends to harden the skin and pre- 
vents its rubbing off. For galls already formed, the following receipt for a 
salve is good ; so it is for human flesh-sores. 


" Take of Iioiiey, twelve ounces ; yellow beeswax, four ounces ; compound 
galbannm plaster, six ounces ; sweet oil, half a pint. Put the lioney into a 
jar by the fire, then melt the other ingredients and mix them together ; 
spread very thin on linen, and apply twice every day." 

162. Horse-Shoeing. — It is wonderful how little the mass of smiths who 
shoe horses know of the anatomy of a horse's foot ; of its delicate organiza- 
tion, and susceptibility to injury by improper paring of the hoof, formation 
of the shoes, and attachment of the same! Horses are peculiarly sensitive 
to lameness, and it is obvious that great care in the particulars mentioned 
should be observed, in order that a firm, positive, and comfortable tread 
sliould be given the feet, so as to make them capal)le of exerting the won- 
derful degree of muscular strength of which they are possessed without 
injury to the exquisitely constructed parts which are brought into play. In 
one of the numbers of the Dnhlin Agricultural Review we find a long article, 
written by William Miles, extracted from the Journal of the Royal Agri- 
cultural Society of London. We heartily commend this able production to 
the perusal of those of our readers interested in this important subject. It 
commences as follows : 

" If I were asked to account for my horses' legs and feet being in better 
order than those of my neighbors, I should attribute it to the four following 
circumstances : First, that they arc all shod with few nails, so placed in the 
slioe as to permit the foot to expand every time they move; secondly, that 
they all live in boxes instead of stalls, and can move wlienever they please ; 
thirdly, that they have two hours' daily walking exercise when they are not 
at work; and fourthly, that I have not a head-stall or rack-chain in niy 
stable. These four circumstances comprehend the whole mystery of keeping 
horses' legs fine, and their feet in sound working condition np to a good old age. 

" All that is really required is, to take one anatomical and one phys- 
iological fact on trust, and believe that the horse's hoof is lined by a very 
sensitive membrane which must on no account ever be wounded, and that 
the hoof itself is elastic, and expands when the weight of the horse is thrown 
on the foot, and con'racts when it is taken off again ; all the rest is jjurely 
mechanical, and merely calls for the exercise of a little thought and patience 
to understand the principle and apply it. 

"Tlie result of the numberless experiments I have made at various times 
on all sorts of horses doing evcrj- kind of work is, that tliere is but one priii- 
ci})le to be observed in horse-shoeing which will admit of no variation or 
compromise : the shoe must fit the foot, whatever the shape of the foot may 
haj)pen to be, and it must be nailed to the hoof in such a manner as will 
]iermit the foot to expand to the weight of the horse; this latter condition 
will be best complied with by placing three nails in the outer limb of the 
shoe, and two in the inner limb between the foe and the commencement of 
the inner quarter ; a larger number than five nails can never be required in 
any shoe of any size, or under any circumstances, excepting for the sole pur- 
pose of counteracting defective and clumsy fitting. 


" No horse should have more than one foot bared at a time ; however 
strong his feet may happen to be, he is sure to stand quieter on a shod foot 
than he can on a bare one, and it will prevent his breaking the crust. A 
horse with weak flat feet is in positive misery when forced to sustain his 
whole weight on a bare foot, while the of)posite foot is held up. 

" A strong foot with an arched sole, when the roads are in good order, 
will require to have the toe shortened, the quarters and heels lowered, and 
the sole pared, until it will yield in some slight degree to very hard pressure 
from the thumb ; but on no account should it ever be pared thin enough to 
yield to moderate pressure ; the angles formed by the crust and the bars at 
tlio heels must be cleared out, and all the dead horn removed therefrom, and 
the bars should be lowered nearly to a level with the sole. 

" A weak flat foot, on the contrary, will bear no shortening of the toe, and 
very little paring or lowering anywhere ; the heels of such feet are sure to be 
too low already, and the sole too thin ; in fact, the less that is done to them the 
better beyond clearing out the dead horn from the angles at the heels, and 
making the crust bear evenly on the shoe ; but the hollow between the bars 
and the frog, or the frog itself, must never be touched by a knife in any foot, 
whether it be a weak one or a strong one ; and as these latter directions 
difl^er materially from the usual practice of smiths, I may, perhaps, be ex- 
pected to state my reasons for wishing to enforce them in opposition to what 
they no doubt consider a time-honored custom ; I mean the inveterate hkbit 
they all have of trimming the frog, and opening out the heels at every 
shoeing ; but I think I shall be able to show that ' it is a custom more hon- 
ored in the breach than in the observance.' 

" The shoe should be neither too light nor too narrow in the web ; light 
shoes are apt to bend before they are half worn out, and narrow-webbed 
shoes expose the sole and frog to imnecessary injury from stones in the road. 
Every fore-shoe should be more or less seated on the foot-surface, to prevent 
it pressing on and bruising the sole ; but a perfectly flat surface should be 
preserved around the edge of the foot-surface of the shoe, from heel to heel, 
for the crust to rest upon. The amount of seating to be employed must be 
determined by the description of foot to be shod ; for instance, a broad foot, 
with a flat sole and weak horn, will require a wide web, considerably seated, 
to prevent it coming in contact with the sole and bruising it ; but a narrow 
foot, with an arched sole and strong horn, will require less width of web 
and less seating, otherwise the dirt and grit of the road would become im- 
pacted between the shoe and the sole, and cause as much pressure and injury 
as tiie iron would have done." 

Many men who own and use horses seem to be indiflferent as to the man- 
ner in which they are shod, so much so that they take them to any one who 
can drive a nail, leave everything to him, and take it for granted that if the 
hoi'se has got four good stout shoes on his feet that will stay on as long as 
they last, it is all right. This is a great mistake, and will often lead to the 
discomfort and ultimate ruin of the horse. 


No horse that is badly shod can travel easily, safely, or well ; and many 
Avho use horses that cut their legs or trip, suppose that the fault is in the 
horse, while in fact no one is in fault but the shoer. There are hardly two 
horses that require precisely Uie same shaped shoe, or that it be put on in 
precisely the same way ; hence to shoe cveiy horse so as not to pinch, and 
consequently injure the feet, and at the same time so that he can perform 
his work easily and well, requires considerable exjiericnce and more thaii 
common skill and intelligence on the part of hoi-se-shoers. 

One of the objects in applying the shoe is to preserve the natural con- 
cavity of the sole of the foot. A horse in his natural state, and, indeed, up 
to the period of his iirst introduction within the precincts of the " smithy," 
has generally a concave sole ; and wisely is it so ordained. Were it other- 
wise, the animal would be unable to secure foothold ; as it is, the inferior edge 
of the hoof — that is, the ground surface — projecting beyond the sole, may be 
compared to the point of a cat's claw or the nails of a man ; they grasp, as it 
were, bodies with which they come in contact, and thus secure a point of 
resistance which aids in advancing limb or body over a smooth surface. 
Now, in order to preserve the natural mechanical functions of the horn and 
sole, the ground surface of the shoe must correspond to the ground surface 
of the foot ; that is to say, the ground surface of the shoe must be beveled 
cup fashion ; its outer edge being prominent, takes the jjlace of the hoof; its 
inner surface being concave, corresponds to the natural concavity of the foot. 
It is a custom among some blacksmiths to reverse the above procedure, and 
place the concave surface next the foot, and often the ground .surface appears 
to be more convex than concave. An iron shoe tacked on to a horse's foot 
is one of the unavoidable evils of domestication, yet, when properly ajiplied, 
is not so great an evil as some persons might suppose. 

R. Jennings, veterinary surgeon, Philadelphia, gives his views as follows 
upon this subject : 

163. Contraction of the Feet of Horses— The Cause and Remedy,—" The 
tendency of a horse's feet, in a healthy condition, is to expand whenever 
the weight of the body is thrown upon them. Being a very complicated 
piece of mechanism, they arc very easily disarranged, and, once out of order, 
are difficidt of repair; hence the necessity of preserving them in a sound 

" Contraction is caused, 1st, by cutting away the bars of the feet, which 
are the main stays for the support of the quarters ; 2d, by (opening tiie 
heels, as the smith calls it) cutting away a portion of the frog, in consc- 
(juence of which the moisture of the frog becomes absorbed, losing its elas- 
ticity and destroying its function, thus exposing the feet to injury by 
concussion ; 3d, by standing upon plank floors ; 4th, by improper shoeing. 

" An ordinary observer will, upon an examination of the common shoe, 
notice that it inclines from without inward at the heels, thus forming a con- 
cavity for the feet to rest in ; the consequence is a lateral resistance to the 
expansion of the hoofs when the weight of the animal is thrown upon them. 

Sko. 8.] HORSES AND MULES. 115 

The effects of this resistance are to force the heels together, creating pressure 
upon the sensitive parts within the horny case ; establishing fever, by which 
the moisture of the hoofs is rapidly absorbed, rendering the hoofs hard, 
brittle, and liable to crack, and frequently causing corns, navicular joint 
lameness, bony deposits to be thrown out from the lateral wings or processes 
of the coffin bones, rendering the animal permanently lame or unsound. 
These are but few of the bad effects arising from contraction — enough, how- 
ever, to serve our purpose at present. 

" Remedy. — Preserve a level bearing by making the shoes perfectly flat 
on the quarters, so as not to interfere with the expansion of the feet. 
Should contraction already exist to considerable extent, bevel the shoes 
slightly outward at the heels, in order to facilitate expansion. Care should 
be used not to bevel too much, or bulging of the lower part of the hoofs at 
the quarters will be the result. The shoes should in all cases be forged, and 
not twisted, as is sometimes done to save trouble by the bungling smith. 
Proper applications, to soften the homy parts and promote elasticity, should 
also be used. Such preparations are put up in the form of hoof ointments." 

164. MnleSi — Few of the farmers of this country are aware what a debt of 
gratitude they owe George "Washington for the introduction of mules into 
general use for farm purposes. 

Previous to 1783 there were but very few, and those of such an inferior 
order as to prejudice farmers against them as unfit to compete with horses in 
work upon the road or farm. Consequently there were no good jacks, and 
no disposition to increase the stock ; but Washington became convinced that 
the introduction of mules generally among Southern planters would pi'ove 
to them a great blessing, as they are less liable to disease, and longer lived, 
and work upon shorter feed, and are much less liable to be injured by care- 
less servants than horses. 

As soon as it became known abroad that the illustrious Washington de- 
sired to stock his Mount Vernon estate with mules, the King of Spain sent 
him a jack and two jennies from the royal stables, and Lafayette sent another 
jack and jennies from the island of Malta. 

Tlie first was of a gray color, sixteen hands high, heavily made, and of a 
sluggish nature. Ke was named the Koyal Gift. The other was called the 
Knight of Malta ; he was about as high, but lighter made, bl.-iek color, and 
lithe and fiery, even to ferocity. 

The two different sets of animals gave him the most favorable opportunity 
of making improvements by cross-breeding, the result of which was a favor- 
ite jack which lie called Compound, because he partook of the best points in 
botli of the original jacks. The General bred his blooded mares to these 
jacks, even taking those from his family coach for that purpose, and pro- 
duced such superb mules that the country was all agog to breed some of the 
same sort, and they soon became quite common. This was the origin of 
improved mules in the United States; though over seventy years since, there 
is no doubt there are now some of the third and fourth generations of 


Knight of Malta and Royal Gift to be found in Virginia, and tlic great ben- 
efits arising from tiieir introduction to the country are to be seen upon ahnost 
every cultivated acre in the Southern States. Notwithstanding tlie enor- 
mous increase of late years, arising from a systematic course of breeding in 
tiie Northern States for the Southern market, mules were never more valua- 
ble than at present, or more ready of sale at high prices. 

165. Lou^evity of MuleSi — We have numerous reports of mules attaining 
the age of forty, fifty, or sixty years, and Col. Middleton, of South Carolina, 
stated some years ago that he had one at work on his plantation eighty years 
old ; and we have seen an account of a mule in Ireland certified to have been 
at work since 1707, making him over 150 years old. This is, of course, a 
very nncommon age, but we are satisfied that, with proper usage, mules 
would commonly attain to about forty years, being serviceable to the last, 
and this should be counted as one of their elements of value. 

1C6. The Largest Mule in the World.— If the following statement is cor- 
rectly given, it tells of the largest mule, probably, ever produced. We 
found it in the Commercial^ of Cincinnati, in 18C0. It says : 

" The largest mule ever produced in the world is now in this city. It is a 
mare mule, nineteen and a half hands high, and weighs eightee7i h^tndred 
< nd thirty-two 2)ounds. This extraordinary animal is the property of Charles 
Frost, of AVayne County, Ind., recently purchased near Lexington, Ky." 

107. Mules, Horses, OxeUi — We read in almost every agricultural paper, 
' we hear in most agricultural addresses, and wc often hear in conversation, 
that one or the other of these animals is the one, and the only one, tliat 
fanners should use, yet we have never seen a farmer who could say, " I 
know." One who has always done liis farm-work with oxen is sure that 
they are the best in all respects ; while fifty miles away he would search a 
hundred farms to find as many yoke of oxen, and where he did find them he 
would probably be told they were only fit for drudgery — that horses only 
are suitable for farm-work, and their owners are ready with loads of reasons 
to substantiate their theory. But take another day's journey, and the theory 
is upset with mules — mules liere, there, everywhere ; nothing but mules, 
and nothing fit for a farm but mules, because the}^ are so strong and liardy 
they never tire, and live upon almost nothing for their daily rations, and are 
the very personification of life everlasting. 

Now, while the advocates of each class of animals disagree so widely, how 
are the seekers after truth to satisfy themselves? Do they look to us for an 
opinion ? We can give it ; here it is. All are best, and upon a large farm 
all would bo found economical to keep for diflerent classes of work ; and it 
is our opinion that no man who farms a hundred acres can afiTord to do with- 
out oxen, mules, and at least one horse. If his oxen are well trained, they 
will travel as fast before the plow and wagon as mules ; but the latter are so 
much more enduring in hot weather, at all sorts of hard work, that their 
services are then particularly valuable. Tliey are better, too, to go off upon 
the road, or to carry produce to market, because they may be, though nat- 

Seo. 8.] HORSES AND MULES. 117 

urall}' about as slow as oxen, trained to travel homeward without a load at 
a round trot. For working singly in the cultivation of crops, mules are far 
superior to horses, and of course can do a great deal of work that could not 
be done by oxen. We have seen mules that were fair substitutes for saddle- 
horses, having one good quality, that of sure-footedness. Tliere is one ob- 
jectitjn to mules on a fariYi where the stock is generally pastured : there is 
nothing short of a Mississippi fence that will hold them — that is, twelve rails 
high, and stake-and-ridered ; and we have heard planters declare that they 
hud often known the brutes to climb over such a fence as that. In advising 
a l^orthern farmer to keep mules, we therefore advise him to make his cal- 
culation to keep them in a stable all the time they are out of harness. 

168. Breeding of Uorses and Mules. — Tliere are certain universal laws of 
breeding which can not be ignored, except at the sacrifice of all success. In 
Kentucky and Tennessee, a very large strain of mules liave been obtained 
by using jacks of immense size. We recollect seeing one at R. Cockrill's, 
near Nashville, over eighteen hands high. We have seen several mules of 
that hight, and numerous ones of sixteen and seventeen hands high. It is 
still a question whether such large mules are as economical as the smaller 
sizes, which cost less at first and cost less for sustenance ; and some persons 
contend that at ordinary labor the small mule will do as much and last 

In breeding either horses or mules, a writer upon the subject says : " If we 
would have sound stock, we mmt have coJistitutional in both dam 
and sire. There are hundreds, ay, thousands, who will scour the country and 
compare the merits of a dozen horses — will give time and money to secure 
the services of a good stallion — and all with the expectation of procuring a 
fine colt from a miserable, puny, ill-shaped, broken-winded, spavined old 
mare. How often do we hear it said, ' Oli, she M-ill do to raise a colt 
from ;' or — after hard service and cruel uaage l^ave left a mere wreck of 
what, away back in the farmer's memory, was once a beast of powei", activ- 
ity, excellent temper, and noble bearing — 'we must now turn the old mare 
out to breed from.' The start is wrong, the foundation is defective — what 
wonder should the structure tumble to the earth ? 

" In the mare we need size and symmetry ; if there be blood, all the bet- 
ter — it will tell. Witliout the first two, however— even though all the 
blood that has flowed through thorough-breds, from the days of Godolpliin 
to the present, were in her veins— she is utterly unfit for a breeder. Many 
animals possess some favorable peculiarity which owners wish to transmit, 
and though there may be a structural deficiency in some other part, the 
mare is brought to the breeding paddock in tbe hope that the desirable 
features will be prominent in the colt, even if it be at the expense of other 
points of strength and action. The breeder here commits an error. It 
would be better to let the mare go, for in the very large majority of cases 
the deficiencies will be transmitted while the excellences will not. 

" In choosing a mare for breeding purposes, she should be so formed in 


frame, as to be capable of carrying and well nourishing her offspring ; that 
is, she should be what is called " roomy." There is a formation of the hips 
which is particularly unfit for breeding purposes, and yet which is some- 
times carefully selected, because it is considered elegant ; this is the level 
and straight hip, in which the tail is set on very high, and the end of the 
haunch bone is nearly on a level with the projection of the hip bono. 
Nearly the opposite form is the more desirable, Avhere, on examining the 
pelvis, it Avill be seen that the haunch bone forms a considerable angle with 
the sacrum, and that there is, as a consequence, plenty of room, not only for 
carrying tlie foal, but for allowing it to pass into the world. Both of these 
points are important, the former evidently so, and the latter no less so on 
consideration ; because, if the foal is injured in the birth, cither of necessity 
or from ignorance, it will often fail to recover its powers and will remain 
permanently injured. Tlie pelvis, then, should be wide and deeii — that is to 
say, large and roomy, and there should also be a little more than the average 
length from hip to the shoulder, so as to give plenty of bed for the foal, as 
well as a good depth of back ribs, which are necessary to give the strength 
to support this increased length. Beyond this roomy frame, necessary as 
the egg-shell of the foal, the mare only requires such a shape and make as 
is well adapted for the purpose she is intended for — that is to say, for pro- 
ducing colts of the style and form she is intended to produce. We Avill add, 
that she must have four good legs under her, and those legs standing on a 
foundation of good, well-shaped, large feet, open heeled, and by no means 

" ' In healtli,' says the same writer, ' the brood mare should be as near 
perfection as the artificial state of the animal will allow ; at all events, it is 
the most important point of all, and in every case the marc should be very 
carefully examined with a view to discover what deviations from a natural 
state have been entailed upon her by her own labors, and what she has in- 
herited from her ancestors. All accidental defects, sucli as broken knees, 
dislocated hijis, etc., may be passed over; the latter, however, only when 
the stock from which the mare is descended are famous for standing their 
work without this frailty of sinew and ligament. Spavins, ring-bones, large 
splents, side-bones, and, in fact, all bony enlargements, are constitutional 
defects, and will be almost sure to be perpetuated, more or less, according to 
the degree in which they exist in the particular case.' 

" Having said thus much upon the requisites on the side of the dam, let 
us see what should be sought for in a sire. It is maintained by all writers 
upon this subject, that hlood should be possessed by a stallion in an eminent 
degree ; that the essential on the part of the sire is the greatest amount of 
pure blood compatible with size, weight, and power according to the pur- 
poses for which we intend to breed. Our best veterinarians argue that tlie 
degree of strength in the bone, sinew, and frame of a blooded horse is, in 
proportion to extent, vastly superior to that contained by his coarser and 
more mammoth brother, the English cart-horse. The difference in the form 


and texture of the muscular system, and in the lesser tendency to form 
flabby, useless flesh, is also in favor of blood. In addition to all this, the 
general constitution of the animal is calculated to furnish him -with greater 
vitality, recuperative energy, and physical power— in proportion to size and 
weight — and, as a consequence, quicker movement, greater courage, and 
better powers of endurance. 

"Herbert, in his 'Hints to Horse-Keepers,' gives his views upon this 
branch of our subject so concisely and clearly, that we can not refrain from 
quoting a paragraph, as follows : ' To breed from a small horse with the hope 
of getting a large colt ; from a long-backed, leggy horse, with the hope of 
getting a short, compact, powerful one ; from a broken-winded, or blind, or 
flat-footed, or spavined, or ring-boned, or navicular-joint diseased horse, with 
the hope of getting a sound one ; from a vicious horse, a cowardly horse — 
what is technically called a dunghill — with the hope of getting a kind-tem- 
pered and brave one ; all or any of these would be the hight of folly. The 
blood sire (and the blood should always be on the sire's side) should be, for 
the farmer-breeder's purposes, of medium hight, say 15i hands high, short- 
backed, well ribbed up, short in the saddle-place, long below. He should 
have high withers, broad loins, broad chest, a straight rump, the converse of 
what is often seen in trotters, and known as the goose-rump ; a high and 
muscular, but not beefy crest ; a lean, bony, Avell-set-on head ; a clear, bright, 
smallish, well-placed eye ; broad nostrils and small ears. His fore legs 
should be as long and as muscular as possible above the knee, and his hind 
legs above the hock ; and as lean, short, and bony as possible below those 
joints. The bones can not by any means be too flat, too clear of excres- 
cences, or too large. The sinews should be clear, straight, firm, and hard to 
the touch. From such a horse, -where the breeder can find one, and from a 
well-chosen mare (she may be a little larger, more bony, more roomy, and 
in every way coarser than the horse, to the advantage of the stock), sound, 
healthy, and well-limbed, he may be certain, accidents and contingences set 
aside, of raising an animal that will be creditable to lain as a scientific stock- 
breeder, and profitable to him in a pecuniary sense." 

With these general remarks upon what we require in breeding, we think 
we may close the section upon horses. "We hope what we have given in re- 
lation to breeding horses will be carefully studied and breeds compared, and 
that what we have said will be just sufficient to awaken an interest that will 
tend to the improvement of this most faithful beast in the service of man. 
If we have not got the right breed, let us inquire where is the deficiency, 
and amend it. Above all, let us think what purpose we are breeding for, 
and not attempt to get an animal suitable for a lady's saddle from an English 
cart-horse or the Norman diligence. 

^ 169. Horse-Gearing.— If a is'ew Mexican, or even a full-blood North Caro- 
lina mountaineer, should appear in the city of New York with his horse 
harnessed, as we have have often seen, it would attract much attention, as 
the whole gearing might not have a particle of leather or iron in its compo- 


sition, tlie collar being made of braided corn-shucks, the hames of natural 
crooked sticks, the traces of raw hide, fastened to the hames by a hole and 
a knot, and to the wiiitHetree by a loop around the end. Rude as this gear- 
ing is, it answers a good purpose, and does not gall or sweat the horse like 
tlie great English collars, or like those known in our boyhood as the '' old 
Dutch collar," whicli was so much like the breeching of the same harness 
that it was rather difficult to tell which belonged forward and wiiich behind. 

The old English collar, specimens of which may be seen occasionally in 
this country, was a most cumbersome piece of horse-gearing which a sensible 
man will not be likely to copy. It is made like our American collars, only 
very much heavier, and has attached to its upper end as an ornament two 
pieces of stiff sole leather as big as the skirts of a saddle, with a great deal 
of ornamental stitching around its edge. Some of these collars weigh 12 to 
15 lbs., and the hames are furnished with two brass horns that stick up sev- 
eral inches above the flap. 

The Scotch collars are also made with a great superfluity of leather, and 
are very heavy, though differing in form from the English collars. 

The weight of a Scotch plow harness is given in Stephens' book of "Tlie 
Farm" at 38 lbs. "We have often seen a horse equally well harnessed to a 
plow in this country when the whole gearing would not weigh half as much, 
nor cost half as much, as an English collar. These English collars are often 
ornamented with red worsted fringe and tassels, and give a six-horse team, 
wearing bells, a very formidable appearance. 

We recommend as an improvement upon our own light, easy, and, we 
think, handsome collars — handsome, because fitting for their purpose — that 
they should be made open at the bottom. "We drove one pair of horses from 
Chicago to Xew Orleans, and from New Orleans to Kew York, making 
many detours, and in all driving some five thousand miles in one journey, 
with a pair of collars open at the bottom ; and although out in all sorts of 
weather, never had a sore shoulder or even chafed oft' the hair. ?f either did 
we use breeching in all tliat journey, yet we traveled over some very rough 
and mountainous roads. AVe are satisfied that a horse will hold back a light 
carriage witii a good strong padded girt as well as M'ith breeching. Our plan 
of a harness is exactly the contrast of an English one. Theirs is, to use up 
all the leather and labor possible, and oui*s to use just as little as possible. 
We do not believe in blinders, check-reins, breeching, nor heavy collars. 
The harness should be made as light as it can be and be strong. Strength is 
an important particular. For a farm-wagon or plow harness we recommend 
ehort leather tugs and chains as preferable to long tugs or long chains. 

170. Working Three Horses Abreast.— In the north part of this country it 
is not very common to see three horses worked abreast. It is quite common 
in Louisiana, particularly in working horses to carts. It is much practiced 
in England, and perhaps would be more so here if farmers had proper gear- 
ing. We have seen it practiced sometimes by hitching the middle horse to 
the center of the swing-bar. Tiiis gives no chance of equalizing the draft 


between the three horses. The English have what are called compensating 
bars between the swing-bar (which we call the double-tree), and the three 
single-trees, so that eacli horse maj be seen to pull equal to the others. 

These bars should be made of iron, one and a half inches wide and three 
eighths of an inch thick. Two of the bars are each 27 inches long, and these 
are attached, as the single-tree usually is, to the ends of the swing-bar, by a 
fulcrum just one third of the length from the outer end. Then a center 
bar, 20 inches long, is attached by working joints to the ends of these out- 
side bars, and tlie single-tree of the center liorse is attached to the center 
of this bar, and the single-trees of the outside horses are attached to the 
ends of the other bars. This equalizes the upon all the horses, for it 
is impossible for one to start ahead without imparting motion backward to 
both of the other liorses. 

The irons of a single or double-tree should always be made so as to clasp 
the wood, which should never have a hole bored tlirough it to pull by. 

171. Dimensions of Double and Singlc-TreeSt — Perhaps every farmer knows 
how to gear a horse, and what are the proper dimensions of a set of double 
or single-trees. But there are many persons who take to farming in after- 
life, and others who may have occasion to make this part of a set of horse- 
gearing, and these will be glad to have the following directions to refer to. 

The bar of a double-tree should be three feet nine inches long and three 
and a half inches wide at the center, and one and a quarter inches thick, .and 
it should be made of the strongest kind of wood that can be procured, and 
straight grained and free from knots. The best wood we have for tliis pur- 
pose is second growth white ash, such as all of our best hoe and shovel 
handles ai'e made of in the United States. 

A single-tree should be three feet three inches long, two and a half inches 
wide, and one and a quarter inches thick. The irons of double and single- 
trees may be all made of the same form and strength ; that is, a piece of the 
very best flat bar iron, one and three quarter inches wide and one fourth 
of an inch thick, is bent so as to clasp around the back part, and the ends 
come about two thirds of the width toward the front edge, with half-inch 
holes through the end and through the' wood. In this hole a piece of half- 
inch iron is to be inserted by tapering the ends so that they will go through 
the hole from each way and clinch fast on the flat iron, leaving the bend 
forward so as to form a loop in which to put the hook of the single-tree, or 
the chain, or a loose ring, as may be required. Tliese irons can not come 
off, even if they should get loose, and the wood is not likely to break, be- 
cause there is no strain upon it. The strain is all npon the irons, and when 
the loop wears out, a new one is easily inserted in its place. The center irons 
of tlie double or single-treos are put on after the same fashion, the loop of tlie 
round iron being back, instead of forward, and both the flat and round irons 
for the center may be a little stronger than the ends. 

This plan is far better than making the irons to drive on like a ring, fast- 
ening them by a few stub-nails driven in the end of the single-tree. Acci- 


dents often occur from the irons of single-trees, put on like rings, getting 
loose and working off. Such things seem always to happen at the most un- 
propitious times. We knew one man well, who lost his life in consequence 
of just such an accident. lie was crossing one of the AVcstern prairies upon 
a cold, stormy night, when the accident occurred, by which he was unable 
to proceed, and, as was sui)posed, while getting his horses loose, that he 
might ride to the nearest house, some miles distant, lie became so chilled as 
to be unable to mount on horseback, and before morning his horses left him 
alone to perish — all in consequence of having bad gearing. 

We have ourselves had some very impleasant experience in our prairie 
traveling, arising from broken swing-trees, and therefore warn you to make 
them very strong — no matter about the looks. Utility is everything. 

Plowing with four horses, though not much practiced in this country, is 
sometimes necessary, and, for want of practice, but few know how to attach 
four horses to a jilow so as to work in the easiest manner. 

The common way is to hitch the double-tree of the leading pair to a hook 
in the center of the double-tree of the rear pair. Tliis gives a dead pull to 
the leaders without affecting the other pair. To obviate this, and give a 
compensating balance to both pair, the following plan has been adopted : 
Attached to the hook of the plow-beam is an iron pulley, about six inches 
diameter. The chain from the first set of double-trees, instead of being 
hooked to the plow-beam, is rove through this pulley, and the end carried 
forward and hooked to the forward double-trees. The working of this is, 
that neither pair can give a dead pull independent of the other pair. If you 
touch up the hind pair so that they start suddenly forward, the pull does 
not give the plow a jerk, because the chain yields around the pulley and 
soon draws back upon the leaders, giving them a hint to press forward, and 
thus keep the strain even. To prevent either pair from drawing too much 
of the chain through the pulley, you can insert an open ring into a link at a 
suitable distance on either side. 

There is no other plan that we have ever seen in operation, so simple as 
this is, to give a perfect equilibrium and balance the forces of each pair of 
horses. In f\ict, the whole four, by the aid of the swing-trees and pulley, are 
all kept in equilibrium. 

It will be w^ell for the hind pair of horses to wear a common wagon neck- 
yoke, and pass the chain that extends to the double-trees of the forward 
horses through the ring, or if that is too high, through a loop attached to 
the ring. The chain is sometimes supported by a strap swinging between 
the rear horses, each end attached to a back band on to the hames. 


(Pase 1123.) 

This picture speaks for itself, and does credit to the artist. It is 
one that will interest moi-e persons than any other. The descrip- 
tions of these fowls will be found in Section IX., ^ 180, 181, 182, 
together with several other kinds. Those here illustrated comprise 
most of the best improved varieties, and quite as many as any farmer 
will care to possess. By comparing the descriptions with the pic- 
tures, it will enable any one to make a suitable selection. The de- 
scription of poultry fails to give satisfaction without pictorial aid. 
it is here complete. We may well feel proud of this picture. 

n 1 

Sbo. 9.] 




axims for Poultry Keepers,— Tliose who expect to 

be Buccessful in raising or managing poultry, or 

hope to make it a paying part of farm business, 

sliould observe a few simple rules wliich will 

save them from much disappointment and trouble. 

1. It is not advisable to keep large numbers of hens 
together, or go into the poultry business on a large scale. 
It is found impracticable and unprofitable ; besides, they 
can not be kept in so healthy a condition as where but 
few are together. 

2. It is impossible to keep hens to advantage without 
having a properly arranged house for their accommoda- 
tion. This is as necessary as that a farmer should have 
a stable for his cattle or a dwelling for his family. 

3. In connection with the house, a poultry-yard should be provided, wliich 
should contain a grass-plot, gravel, some quantities of slacked lime, and dry 

4. Tlie inside of the poultry-house should be whitewashed twice a year, or 
'oftener, which will serve to keep it free from vermin, and the hens will be 
kept in better condition. 

5. Pure water, in sufiicient quantities, must be provided several times a 
day, in winter and in summer. 

6. Feed should be given at regular periods. To fatten fowls, they must 
not be allowed to run at large. 

These rules are subject to variation imder certain circumstances. A new 
settler in the woods would not consider them applicable. It would be more 
profitable to let his poultry run at large. So it is upon all farms at some 
seasons, but there are but few farmers who would not sometimes find it prof- 
itable to shut up all his poultry, the gallinaceous portion of it particularly. 
For this purpose a poultry-yard will be found always a great convenience, 
if not a great profit. It should be so constructed that its first cost will not 
be money unprofitably spent. Many persons have found it profitable to 
have a tolerably large inclosure for poultry, and plant that with plum-trees. 
It is asserted that curculio insects never disturb plums upon such trees. It 
is our opinion that it would be found very profitable to have a portable 
poultry house and yard, which could be conveniently moved from place to 
place, keeping it upon one spot one year, and upon another the next. By 
this means some bad brier-patches would be subdued, and some poor spots 
cheaply enriched. 

If poultry are kept in a yard, the ground should be often dug up. If the 
yard is large enough, it may be plowed. It is a good way to have a large 


yard in two parts, and plow and eow grain in one, and when it gets large 
enough for the hens to eat, turn them in and plow and sow the other. 

Ileus that run at large arc often very troublesome, sometimes doing 
''more mischief than their necks are worth." The following device is for 
such mischievous pests. 

173. Shoeing UenSi — " Ve observe a recent notice, in some paper, of the 
practice of making woolen shoes (or rather boots), to jjrevent hens from 
scratching. A flock of fifty fowls, like our own, would require considerable 
labor in the manufacture of a hmidred woolen boots, which might be worn 
through in a short time and need renewing. It is much better, we think, to 
procure a breed that will not scratch. There is another point of import- 
ance — that is, to keep the animals well fed during the season when scratch- 
ing is most feared." 

One man says: "I keep from thirty to fifty of the white Shanghae — a 
very quiet, well-behaved, and profitable fowl — and adopt the most econom- 
ical mode, namely, regular feeding with grain ; and although there is no 
barrier between their ordinary range and the kitchen garden, they do not 
scratch yearly enough to do twenty-five cents' damage." 

174. Number of Hens to Keep, and Time to Sell. — A correspondent of the 
Illinois Prairie Farmer says: "We have kept as many as 150 fowls, and 
fed them three pecks of shelled corn daily. But our experience has been, 
tliat we could get more than half as many eggs from twenty-five fowls as 
we could from one hundred. "\Ve have carried chicks the size of quails to' 
market and found them ready sale at twenty-five cents each. We might 
have kept them four months longer, and found them dull sale at a dime 

175. Feeding Hens Meat. — We have been advised to feed plenty of meat to 
our hens, if we wanted them to lay steadily. Now there is a time to feed 
meat and a time not to feed it. When the temperature is low and the 
ground is frozen, feed meat, but when the weather is warm, or even mod- 
crate, if the chickens can scratch the ground and find worms and insects, 
Ihoy need no meat. The insects and worms furnish meat sufficient, and too 
much in many cases, causing them to lay eggs without any shell. They 
should then have plenty of lime or old mortar, gravel, etc. 

Young chickens generally do best in coops, raised some inches from the 
ground, until they arc six or eight weeks old ; if they droop after this, the 
next hour of warm sunshine will bring them up again. A. correspondent 
says, the last time he tried to raise them on the ground, he lost 59 out of 
60. He has often raised 60 or 70 at a tiine since without losing one, simply 
by cooping them away from the ground until six weeks old. 

A writer in the English Agricultural Gazette recommends that a piece of 
iron be kept constantly in the water to which fowls have access. Iron rust, 
he says, is an excellent tonic. A roll of brimstone is also recommended to 
be kept in the water. 

17G. How to Keep Hens Shut up. — It is one of the most important matters 

Sec. 9.] POULTRY. 125 

abont poultry keeping, particularly to small farinei-s and villagers, to know 
how to keep liens in confinement. It is very convenient for many persons 
who could not allow them to run at lai'ge to annoy themselves and neigh- 
bors, to keep enough to supply the family witli fresh eggs, and pe.haps a 
few chickens. 

As conlinement is an unnatural condition for fowls, it is often an un- 
healthy condition. The question is, can they be kept shut up in close quar- 
ters and keep healthy? If large numbers are together, they are very apt to 
get a disease which makes them lose their feathers. Sometimes they pull 
them off of one another. Great attention should bo paid to cleanliness, 
where fowls are shut up. Lime for the hens to oat — limo scattered over the 
floor — lime used as whitewash, should never be neglected. The following 
rules are very good : 

1st. Do not keep more than ten hens confined in one small yard. They 
will be more profitable than fifty. If you wish to keep a large number, have 
several places for tliem. 

2d. Do not confine them in a damp or shaded place, but in a dry one, 
Avhere they can have both shade and sunshine. The latter is very important. 

3d. As they can not remove from the filth that accumulates, it should be 
removed from them. There is no permanent success in keeping fowls in 
confinement without the utmost neatness. Their droppings should be d lily 
removed from the roosting-place, and the yard should be well littered with 
fresh straw, tan, or other material, as often as is necessary. 

4th. The hen is omnivorous — that is, she eats almost everything ; insects, 
flesh, grain, and fruit are taken with avidity. All attempts, therefore, to 
confine hens to a single article of diet will fail. Give them a good su])ply 
of grain and butchers' scraps, boiled potatoes, sour milk, and the refuse of 
the kitchen, and during the summer months an occasional taste of fruit, and, 
in addition, egg-shells and 03'ster-shells crushed ; or, if you can not get 
these, pound up the bone's that always collect about 3'ards. It is wonderful 
with Avhat avidity fowls, especially M-hen confined, will eat broken bones. 

5tli. Pleniy of clean water is always necessary. Stagnant or filthy wa*er 
will not do. It alone is sufiicieut to cause disease. Running water is be:rt, 
but clean, fresh water will answer. 

6th. Exercise is quite an important part of the plan. Turn them out an 
hour before sunset to pick up insects, gravel, and other substances, and it 
will quicken their circulation and add much to their powers of resisting dis- 
ease. We have heard a poultry keeper say, who followed these rules, that 
with him the balance-sheet gave a large profit. 

Although the above remarks are applicable principally to residents of 
towns or villages, yet wc would like to add a word for the benefit of farmeis. 
How few of them keep poultry at a profit ! Indeed, as generally kept about 
the farm, with free range of the barn, grain, and often ])ortions of the house, 
they are of no profit, and very often arc an almost intolerable nuisance. 

177. The Food of Fowls. — This is a very important question. A great 


many expedients have been resorted to in order to cheapen the food of fowls. 
Cliiindlers' greaves arc hargely used by parties in the vicinity of New York 
to fatten poultry for market. These are good for an occasional feeding, I)ut 
for exclusive food we have our doubts, and think others will, after reading 
the following extract: 

178. Arc Fowls Wholesome which are Fed on Putrid Meat?— Such is tlie 
question considered by Dr. Uuchosnc in the January number of the A7inal€s 
d- Hygiene PuhUquc. 

It is well known that man can not indulge in putrid meat with impunity, 
and numerous cases are on record where accidents have occurred from this 
kind of food. Little is known, however, of the cflects produced by the flesh 
of animals otherwise in good health, but nourished with flesli in a state of 
j)utrefaction. Certain animals can undoubtedly be nourished on such putrid 
nuittcrs ; but it is important, in a hygienic point of view, to determine the 
modifications wliicli the exclusive use of putrid viands may produce in the 
quality and the preservability of fowls destined for the market. 

On the occasion of a complaint against a farmer in the neighborhood of 
Paris, Dr. Duchesne visited liis establishment on a warm day in July, and 
toward the afternoon. The food of the poultry he found to consist of flesh 
in a state of putrid decomposition, which had been obtained from the 
slaughter-houses of Paris. The fat is first removed by cooking, and bran is 
added; and this mixture is given morning and evening to the fowls, who 
iiglit for it with avidity. A very fetid odor came from the barrels in M-hich 
llio food was contained, from the vessels where it was supplied to the fowls, 
and also from the ground round about them. The fowls, however, appeared 
to be in perfect health. Dr. Duchesne supplied himself with three eggs laid 
tiiat day, and also with a fowl and duck of a year old, which were killed 
before him. In three hours' time the poultry gave out a very strong odor, 
and the intestines were so offensive that they had to be removed to a dis- 
tance. Decomposition rapidly set in. Tiic fowl, at the end of twenty hours 
after being cooked, had an unpleasant, strong taste, and the duck, at the end 
of twenty-four hours, was in such a state that it could not be eaten. Next 
da}', when the flesh was cold, and the smell abated, portions of the duck 
were partaken of by the servants. The eggs, too, were found, if kept a rea- 
sonable time, to become very unpalatable. In fine, it was shown that 
though fowls nourished in this way were apparently healthy, and could be 
eaten at a pinch without great inconvenience, yet that it was most probable 
that the continued use of such articles of diet would be attended with danger. 
The Council of Health at once interdicted the sale of fowls fed in this ob- 
jectionable manner. 

Dr. Duchesne continued his inquiries at the great knackery of Aubcrvil- 
liers, where pigs and fowls are fed in great numbers on flesh, raw and 
cooked, and where similar animals arc reared on a mixed food, consisting of 
flesh and grain. The results of his observations arc embodied in the follow- 
ing conclusions: 

Sko. 9.] POULTRY. 127 

1. Fowls and pigs may be fed on sound flesh, raw and cooked ; on flesh, 
raw and cooked, of animals affected with contagious diseases, as glanders, 
malignant pustule, hydrophobia, etc. ; and even on flesh, raw or cooked, in 
a very advanced state of putrefaction, without any alteration in their health. 

2. Cliickens are feared with difficulty if their food be restricted to flesh, 
raw or cooked, even when sound ; and a larger number of them perish than 
when fed on ordinary kinds of food. 

3. The eggs of fowls thus nourished are as palatable as the eggs of fowls 
nourished in the common way. The shell, however, is thinner and more 
easily broken. 

4. The flesh of fowls and pigs nourished on flesh raw or cooked, is softer, 
more diflicult to preserve, and the fat is yello-iv and more diffluent. 

5. The doctor has still doubts as to the absolute wholesomeness of fowls 
and pigs fed on animals dying of glanders, etc., and recommends that the 
use of the flesh of such animals should be prohibited for the rearing of fowls 
and pigs. 

6. The use of flesh in a state of putrefaction, for similar purposes, should 
be absolutely prohibited as unwholesome. 

7. Fowls should not be fed too long or too abundantly' on worms, cater- 
pillars, beetles, etc., as such food communicates a strong taste to the flesh. 

8. The continued use of flesh, otherwise healthy, and either raw or cooked, 
ultimately injures the growth of the fowls and the quality of their flesh. 

9. The best method of rearing undoubtedly is, to give flesh but once a 
day, and to finish with a meal of grain. 

10. For market use, the use of flesh should be stopped, and the fowls re- 
stricted for some time to the use of a vegetalde diet. 

179. (Iioice of a CocU. — In breeding, the choice of a cock is a very import- 
ant matter. The following arc some of the " points" insisted upon by 
poultry fanciers : 

It is accounted that he has every requisite quality, when he is of good 
size, carries his head high, has a quick and animated look, a strong, shrill 
voice, the bill thick and short, the comb a fine red, and in a manner var- 
nished ; a membraneous wattle of a large size, and colored the same as the 
comb, the breast broad, the wings strong, the thighs very muscular, the legs 
thick, the claws with nails rather bent, and with a very keen point ; when 
he is free in his motions, crows often, and scratches the earth with vigor and 
is constantly in search of worms— not so much for himself as his mates— 
when he is spirited, ardent, and clever in caressing them, quick in defending 
them, attentive in soliciting them to eat, in keeping them together in the 
day, and assembling them at night. 

There are some cocks, which, by being too high mettled, are snappish and 
quarrelsome. The way to quiet the turbulent ones is plain : their foot must 
be put through a leather, in a round shape ; they become as quiet as men 
who are fettered at their hands, feet, and neck. 

180. The Varieties of Common Fowls.— As to the variety to be chosen, that 


must be left to the fancy of those who arc to raise the fowls. In a farmer's 
family, this will generally be the female portion of it, and the gudcwife or 
children who take the fowls under their charge, should be consulted. At 
least the different varieties should be made known to them, by placing in 
their hands some good treatise upon poultry. Several volumes have been 
published, with portraits and full descriptions, and how to conduct the 
business of poultry raising on a large or small scale. "We can not give this 
information in full ; we will only name the several sorts which are to be 
found among poultry fanciers in this country, with short descriptions, and re- 
fer readers, for comparison of size and form, to the beautiful engraved illus- 
trations of varieties, found in standard English works on Domestic Poultry. 

181. The Shan^hae and China Breed. — A few years ago a good many 
people in this country, afflicted with the " hen fever," went into ecstasies over 
tlie Shanghae, or China, breed of fowls, some of which are enormously large. 
Cocks are spoken of as being twenty-eight inches high. The wings are 
short, and placed high upon the body. The tail is short, with a thick clump 
of feathers over the root of tlie tail feathers. The cocks have large combs 
aiul wattles ; the hens are seldom large. The legs are feathered. The eggs 
are not large in proportion over the size of eggs of our old-style fowls ; the 
color is nankeen, and the ends rather blunt. 

Those who breed Shanghae fowls consider the flesh very good, and the 
full-grown bodies of cocks weigh eight or ten pounds, and pullets si.x or 
eiglit pounds. There are varieties of colors aniong the Shanghaes — some 
ht'ing pure white ; others, a reddish brown, etc. 

The variety known as Cochin-China fowls differ very much in quality, 
habits, and general appearance from the Shanghaes, to whicli they are closely 
relaied. Their eggs are nearly the same shape, size, and color. Tlie main 
difference is in the somewhat deeper and fuller breast, aild being generally 
smooth-legged. They also have the same liollow, harsh voice, when crow- 
ing, in their peculiar sonorous tone, long drawn out, and very unlike the 
shrill ringing clarion of our old-style barn-door cock. 

The Malay, or Chittagong, is another name of one of the varieties of the 
China breed of fowls, which are supposed to be larger than the Cochins ; 
the size, by weight, accorded to some of them seems enormous. 

We believe the variety called Malay fowls are considered identical with 
the variety called Chittagong. Tiie full-grown Malay cock is said to weigh 
12 lbs., and the hens 8 to 10 lbs. They are of all shades of color, and have 
small, thick combs and small wattles, and no top-knot ; tlie legs not feath- 
ered. Their eggs are larger than those of the other large varieties. The 
crow of the Malay cock is loud and harsh, but terminates abruptly. 

182. Ornamental Varieties of Fowls> — As the China breed, which we have 
described, can not be said to be ornamental around a genteel farm-hous© or 
rural residence, we will name some which are so, and at the same time are, 
at least some of them, very valuable for all domestic purposes. The general 
appearance of the various sorts may be judged from reading the short notes 

Sec. 9.] POULTRY. 129 

wliicli we append. The most oraamental thing about a yard full of fowls 
is to have them all of one variety ; for instance, Dominiques, all looking so 
much alike that individuals would be hardly distinguishable. 

The Pheasant-Malay is the name given to a variety of imported fowls, 
wliich are esteemed by some as quite desirable, particularly as ornamental 
stock. They are called good layers, good sitters, and good mothers. The 
cocks have black tails, and black on the neck and wings. Full-sized eggs 
v\-eigh two ounces each. The newly hatched chicks are yellow, with a black 
mark down the back. Some of the hens are described as of a pheasant 
color, with long velvety black necks. 

Gudderland fowls is the name of another variety ; they are jet black in 
the plumage, without combs, and small wattles ; bodies short and plump ; 
legs long and feathered ; eggs large, white, oval-shaped, and rich. The 
hens are not esteemed good layers nor sitters. This variety comes from the 
north of Holland. 

The Dorlcings. — This, in our opinion, is one of, if not the, best varieties we 
have in this country for the every-day purposes of farmers. It is the sort 
mostly used for caponizing in England. There are white, gray, and brown 
Dorkings. The legs are white or flesh-colored, smooth, and terminate in 
Jive toes. They feed well, to a good size, and the flesh is considered partic- 
ularly delicate. The cock's comb is large and erect, and deep serrated, free 
from top-knot ; wattles, large. They are noted for hardiness ; are prolific, 
and chickens easily raised. The eggs are large, pure white, very round, and 
nearly equal in size at the ends. The chicks are brownish yellow, with a 
broad stripe down the middle of the back, and a narrower one on each side ; 
feet and legs yellow. 

Black Spajiisk is the name of a variety of very ornamental as well as 
useful fowls. The plumage is glossy black ; the combs of both cocks and 
hens large and red ; and their general appearance spirited and handsome. 
They have a singular mark, which distinguishes the variety — it is a white 
mark on each cheek, not of feathers, but a fleshy substance, which in the 
cocks is very conspicuous. The hens are great layers, but not inclined to 
sit. Tlie eggs are large and white, and so is their skin and flesh, which is 
tender and juicy. The chicks are black, with a white spot on the breast, 
and are long in getting feathered ; so none but early spring chickens should 
be attempted, and these must be obtained by setting hens of another variety 
upon the Spanish eggs. 

Game Fowls. — There are several distinctly marked sorts of game fowls — ■ 
black, white, gray, and brown, all having the same general cliaracteristies, 
the most marked of which is pugnaciousness. The general size is 3^ to 5i 
lbs. Tiie eggs are smaller than the eggs of the most common fowls, uni- 
formly shaped, and cook rich and delicate. In form the game fowl is tlio 
handsomest of the race. The head is thin and long ; eyes large and full ; 
beak stout and crooked ; long neck ; body compact, short, and round in the 
breast ; thighs thick, stout, handsome, taper-sliaped ; legs long and thick 



and colored like the beak; feet thin, broad, strong, with very long claws. 
Tlie cock walks with a proud, defiant courage, and appears always ready for 
a fight. It is a good variety to breed from for domestic purposes, if care is 
taken not to allow cocks of any other sort upon the premises, and not to 
allow cocks ever to be pitted against each other. 

The Mexicans appear to have a variety of game fowls quite distinct from 
the English varieties. It was first introduced into the United States in 1S44, 
by General "Waddy Thompson, of South Carolina. The cocks and hens have 
but few marks to distinguish one from the other. The original stock are 
pheasant-colored, and in some of those bred iu South Carolina, black tail 
feathei-s, and a tendency to gray or light j-ellow j^lumage. This variety are 
great fighters ; they have strong, muscular frames, and are quick and firm 
in action. The cocks have large lustrous eyes and strong bills and upright 
combs. The hens are good layers and sitters, and good nurses. This is the 
breed of game-cocks patronized by General Santa Anna, who was the great- 
est cock-fighter iu Mexico. 

The Java fowl is a very large variety, of black color, said to be found, 
though probably not pure, on Long Island, and around Philadelphia. They 
are sometimes called Saddle-backs, on account of being so bi'oad across the 

The Jersey Blue is the name of a variety quite common in New Jersey, 
the excellence of which is so great, that anything particularly good is figura- 
tively spoken of as " one of the old blue hen's chickens." The color is light 
blue, sometimes approaching a dun ; legs generally dark, and sometimes 
lightly feathered. Cocks weigli 7 to 9 lbs. ; and hens, 6 to 8 lbs. 

The Poland foivh take their name, not from Poland, but from a resem- 
blance to the tuft of white feathers worn by Polish soldiei-s. They are 
glossy black, except the top-knot, which resembles a full, white rose. Like 
the Black Spanish, the Polauds are great layers and bad sitters. The skin 
and flesh are wliite, and good for the table. The cocks weigh 4 to 4} lbs., and 
hens, 3 to 3i lbs. Their form is plump, and legs not very long, being well- 
proportioned and liandsonic-shajjed, and they are ])articularly ornamental 
to a country seat. The eggs are of good size^ and white, but though abun- 
dant, are not as rich as some others. 

Another variety of the so-called Poland fowls arc white, with black top- 
knots ; and another sort are gold-spangled. These are exceedingly orna- 
mental ; the crest being large, golden, and brown ; legs, light blue, and 
toes partially webbed. 

The Silver Polands are spangled with silver instead of gold, and the hens 
are the most ornamental. Even the chicks of this variety are pretty. 

The Poland variety of fowls are only fit for neat places, where they can 
run upon grassy yards or lawns. In dirty pens the crest becomes loaded 
with dirt, and blinds the jjoor birds. Where they can run at large around 
the house, even if the hens were not, as they are, such good layers, they 
might well be kept for ornament alone. 

Sko. 9.] POULTRY. 131 

The Spangled Haniburg fowls are another ornamental variety, witli top- 
knots and beautiful plumage, both gold and silver spangled. The weight 
of male birds is about 4i or 5 lbs., aud the hens, 3 or Sj lbs. The cock 
stands twenty inches high, and heu eighteen inches. 

The Bolton Gray is another ornamental variety, and also a very useful 
one, the heus being excellent layers. They are said to have come from 
Holland to Bolton, England. Tlio color is remarkable ; the ground work 
pure white, delicately penciled with black over the body. The neck is 
white, and heads surmounted with large, red, serrated combs. The weight 
of cocks may be 4 to 4i lbs., and hens, 3 to 3j lbs. They belong to the 
small-sized varieties, but are the most perfect patterns of neatness and sym- 
metrical beauty of the domestic fowl family. The chicks are white, except 
a dark streak on the head and back of the neck, which seems curious, as, 
when grown, the necks are white and bodie? marked with black. The 
cliicks are rather hard to raise. The eggs are small, tapering at one end, 
and pure white. 

The Sill-y fowls are also classed among the ornamental, and comprise sev- 
eral varieties, originating in India. Some have white plumage, with dark 
skin and bones. The combs of some are black, with black plumage and 
black bones ; and the feathers are so unlike feathers, the hens get.tlie name 
of silky. They are not considered a valuable bird. 

The Frizzled fowls is another variety, but not one that we can recommend 
any one to cultivate. This sort may be known by the description given to 
us when wc first saw any of the kind in our boyhood, and asked the reason 
of their singular appearance, and were told that the chickens got turned in 
the shell in an earthquake, which upset things generally and turned the 
chickens' fcvitliers wrong end foremost. That is the appearance of the pure 
breed. Every feather looks as though it had been curled and turned wrong 
end foremost with a pair of sucli curling-tongs as the girls used to frizzle 
their hair with in olden time. To onr mind, the Frizzles are ugly beasts, 
not worth raising on account of any good qualities, and only to be indulged 
in by those who can afford to keep curiosities. 

The Cuclioofowl is a variety found in some English farm-yards, and per- 
haps in this countiy. It has a barred plumage, somewhat resembling the 
breast of a cuckoo. The general color is a slate blue, tinged with white ; the 
comb is small ; the iris of tlie eyes, bright orange ; feet and legs, light flesh 
color; so that it will be seen that the breed is rather an ornamental one. 
The birds grow to a large size ; the eggs are very white, smooth, and about 
two ounces weight. 

The Blue Dun fowls originated in Dorsetshire, England, and are rather an 
ornamental variety, under size, slender made, with higli, deeply serrated, 
single combs. Sometimes the Blue Dun cock is gold or scarlet spangled, 
and very pretty. The hens are good layers, and make good pets. The 
cocks are rather gamy. The hens are good mothers, and the chicks are real 
little curiosities. This variety is esteemed for the table. 



[Chap. I. 

The Large-Crested fowl is another old Eiif^lish ornamental variety, tlic crest 
boin£; larj^er than the Polands, and the fowls of various colors, some of them 
very brilliant white — more dazzling than the white Guinea fowl, which gives 
them and the homestead where they are kept a very lively appearance. 
When dressed for market, their ajjpearance is very clean and attractive. 
Tlicir general good fjiialities make them favorites upon many a farm in 

The BantamH are also rated among the ornamental fowls. Some of them 
arc really so. The Sebrights have beautiful plumage of a delicate speckled 
dark and golden color. There are also black, white, and nankeen colored 
bantams. Tlieir model is perfect and plumage beautiful, and of only about 
a pound average M-eight for the hens, and one and a quarter to one and a 
half pounds for cocks. They are great pets with many persons in England, 
and are held at fabidous prices. The bantams are good layers, and good 
sitters, and good mothers. Some of the cocks are very gamy. We de- 
cidedly approve of keeping bantams as ornaments of the farm-yard. And 
we recommend that the feather-legged variety be avoided, as they are not 
60 neat in muddy weather in their appearance as the naked-legged sort. 
The color is a mere matter of taste. 

Tiie Dominique fowl is not only an variety, but a veiy good 
one for evcry-day purposes on the farm. The true color is a peculiar ar- 
rangement of white and blue, that gives a sort of greenish tint to the 
plumage. The combs are double ; the wattles small ; tlie legs white or yel- 
low. The Dominiques are hardy ; above medium size ; very domestic ; and 
the hens are good layers, and most excellent sitters and mothers ; the eggs 
good size and quality, and the birds excellent for the table. 

There are many other sorts of ornamental fowls not entirely worthy of 
recommendation for domestication in this country — among which is the 
Bankiva cock, from the East Indies, of the bantam order, but twice as large 
as the common bantams. 

The Forlccd-Tail cock is another India variety, something like the Bankiva 
cock. This is a wild sort in Java. 

Sonerat''s wild code is also an Indian variety, which lias been attempt- 
ed to be domesticated on account of its beautiful plumage, whicli is a deep 
gray, tinged with lighter gray on the edges, with deep green tails ; beak, 
legs, and feet yellow. 

183. Chicken CoopSt — " Anybody knows how to make a chicken coop." No 
he don't. Not one farmer in ten can make a decent chicken coop. Conse- 
quently, old barrels and boxes are substituted. They may be "good enough ;" 
they are not ornamental, and for ornamental poultry you should have orna- 
mental coops. To make a convenient, light coop, take half or three-eighth- 
inch boards, six inches wide, and nail them upon posts exactly like siding 
on a house, if that is the way your house and farm buildings arc sided, so as 
to have a uniformity. If buildings are boarded up and down with battens, 
make coops in the same way. Board three sideA-lose, and the other side fix 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 133 

■with slats two inclics wide and two inclies apart, with extra slats that can be 
shoved in between, being held in place by a bar in front at top, and one at 
bottom. One of the other slats should also be made movable, so it can 
be raised to allow the hen to go in and out. If the coop id double, which we 
prefer, make a movable slat for each room. The dimensions of a double 
coop may be two feet long, one and a half feet wide, one and a half feet 
high on the back, and two feet in front, with a close partition in the middle. 
Make the roof of live pieces of boards — one at each end and one in the mid- 
dle, nailed fast, and two others hinged and buttoned down on the others, so 
as to make openings about six inches wide into the coops. One room is for 
the nest 'and one for the brood. If two liens are very docile, they may oc- 
cupy one coop. Outside of the front slats nail a little trough, one foot long, 
to serve both rooms for water, which will be comeatable outside and in. 
These are the dimensions of a coop of the smallest size, which will be so 
light that a child can move it from place to place. It should have a floor ; 
and if rats are troublesome, it can be set up from the ground, particularly at 
night. The dimensions in length may be increased as much as desired. Set 
it face to the sun, and in case of storm, or in cold nights, close all the slats, 
leaving open a hole in each end, high up, about two inches square or round, 
for ventilation. If you wish to raise your chickens without a mother, line 
one room of the coop with old carpet, and put a board, covered with woolly 
sheep-skin, about six or eight inches square, in one corner, just high enough 
for tiie chicks to creep under, and look well to them for a few days, and they 
will do better than with a bad mother. As they grow large enough to go 
out of doors, let them in a.small yard, in front of the coop, to scratch and 
bask in the sun. The best fence for such a yard is wove-wire, one and a 
half or two feet high. With nice, warm, dry coops, early chickens can be 
raised almost as sure as late ones, and where grown for sale, will generally 
sell for as much when half grown as late ones will full grown. 

Stoves in Chicken- Houses. — It has been found profitable, in raising early 
chickens, to use artificial warmth. A small, Avarm room, warmed in cold 
weather by a stove, so as to keep the temperature at about 55 degrees, 
will allow you to set your hens in January or February, and get chickens 
which will sell, when the size of quails (say 75 cents a pair), for as much as 
old fowls. These warm-house chickens must not be allowed to run out in 
the cold or wet grass, but will be benefited by allowing them to run out in 
the sun. If we made a business of raising poultry for market, we would set 
hens in a stove-room all winter. A tun of coal, costing say six dollars, 
would wami a room all winter, large enough to raise two or three hundred 
chickens, which would sell in the city markets, certainly at twenty-five cents 
apiece, when the size of quails. 

18i. Set Hens Earlyt — It is a great object to set bene as early as possible 
in spring, as early chickens will begin to lay in October, and give eggs in 
November and December. Be careful to give your early sitters a warm, 
dry nest. After the hen has been sitting ten days, examine the eggs to see 



[CnAP. I. 

if all are gooJ, and throw out the bad ones. To tell wliich are good, hold 
an egg up to a hole or crevice of a dark room, and look at it, and if all below 
the vacuum in the butt is dark-colored opaque, it is in a fair wa}' to liatch. 
If it is light-colored and yellowish, so that the sunlight can be seen through 
it, you may throw it out at once ; and if all are so, you can dismiss the old 
hen with your thanks for her good intentions. 

" Double eggs" rarely hatch, and when they do, arc just as likely to pro- 
duce two distinct chickens as a Siamese one. 

Nests should be made shallow. If boxes are used, not over live inches 

185. Periods of Incubation. — A common fowl hen sits 20 days ; a Guinea 
fowl lieu, 251 days; a duck, 26 days; a turkey hen, 27 days; a goose, 29 
days ; a musk duck, 32 or 33 days ; a pea-hen, 27 to 29 days. 

To hatch healthy chicks in these periods, tlie birds must have good warm 
nests in a sheltered situation. Chickens have been hatched in nineteen 
days, and the period has been prolonged to twenty-seven days. 

180. Weights of Various Breeds of Fowls aad other Poultry: 

Lbs. Oz. 

Black Polish cock, three years old 5 

" hen, " " " 3 

" piiUet 2 

Golden Polish cock 5 

" hen 3 

Another hen 3 

Golden Polish pullet 2 

Malay hen 3 

Creole (Silver Hamburgh) hen 3 

Black Nondescript hen 4 

Globe-crested Polish hen 3 

Silver Polish hen 3 

Garae-cock 4 

" hen 3 

Young Blue Dun cock 3 

Blue Dun hen 3 

Large Dun Hybrid hen 3 

Pheasant-Malay cocks, two years old, 

average each 7 

" cockerel, five months old 7 

" hen 5 

" pullet, seventeen months old 5 

" (crossed with Dorking hen), four 

years old 5 8 

Speckled Surrey hen, two years old 5 12 

Spanish hen 5 

Two Dorking cocks, each 7 

" hens 6 8 

" " 6 12 

Cock turkey, two years and a half old. . 17 12 

Hen " one year and a half old ... . 10 

Turkey cock, sixteen months old IG 

" hen, three or four ye.ir8 old .... 8 dr.ikc (molting) 9 

White China gander, si.x years old .... 12 

White China goose 11 

Common China goose, Cynoides, she 

years old 10 

Cochin-China cock, about sixteen months 

old, molting 

Cochin-China hen, " " "..4 

Malay cock, about sixteen months old . 6 

" hen, " " " " . . 4 

Pheasant-jVIaftvy cock 5 

" " hen, molting 3 

Game-cockerel, about five months old . 4 
Golden Hamburgh cockerel, just arrived 
from a long journey, about five 

months old 3 

" pullet, " " " 2 
Cochin-China cockerel, six months old. 4 
Another, " " " . 4 
Silver Hamburgh cockerel, after travel- 
ing, .about live months old 3 

" pullet, " " " " 2 

Black Polish hen, molting 3 

Golden Hamburgh, " 2 

Andalusian cockerel, four months old . 3 

pullet, " " " .. 2 

Black Spanish cockerel " " . . 2 

" pullet, " " " . . 2 

Silver Polish cockerel, four months and 

a half old 

Golden Poland pullet, about five months 


White-crested Golden Poland pullet, " 




2 3 

3 8 
2 Gi 
2 11 
2 11 

2 Mi 

187. Capons and Po.ulardeSi — These are terms applied to emasculated cocks 
and pullets. Every person who makes a business of poultry raising to 
supply a city market, sliould learn the art of making capons and poulardcs, 
because they will always sell for nearly twice as much as other fowls. 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 135 

The instnuiients used to perform the operation are few and simple, and 
inexpensive, and tlie art easily learned. 

A set of first-class caponizing instruments is included in tlie following 
list : a scalpel, 62^^ cents ; silver retractor, $1 50 ; spring forceps, 874 cents ; 
spoon, with hook, 75 cents ; double silver canula, §1 75 ; total, $5 50. 

A nnich cheaper set of instruments would answer all practical purposes. 

The proper age for caponizing chickens is from one to three months. The 
cock is confined upon a table by weights upon the M-ings and legs, with the 
right side up ; the feathers are then plucked off a spot on the right side near 
the hip joint, about an inch across, where the incision is to be made, by 
which the parts are exposed that are to be removed. The operation takes 
but a few minutes for a skillful operator. 

18S. Pea-Fow!s. — Of all the ornamental poultry ever kept on a place, the 
pea-fowls take the lead, and well they miglit, for they are the most useless, 
and a very expensive luxury. They will not bear confinement ; will not 
even roost in a liouse, but occupy the tops of the highest buildings or tall 
trees. And for mischief, from which they can not be restrained, they excel 
all the feathered tribe. They are cunning beyond belief. They will watch 
opportunities to visit the garden and steal fruit, and be out before they are 
suspected. Driving them out with all possible marks of ill-treatment has 
no effect upon them, as it does upon other poultry. The pea-fowls will bear 
a repetition of abuse every day, and every day return to their thieving. So 
no one who has a garden and lawn in one inclosure should attempt to keep 
pea-fowl ; nor where there is any chance for them to get into mischief. 

A gardenless mansion may, and should have numbers of pea-fowls. A 
single pair makes but little show, while a flock makes a most dazzling, 
splendid appearance. Peahens are two or three years in coming to maturity. 
They then lay four to seven eggs, whicli require twenty-seven to twenty-nine 
days' incubation. Peahens always steal their nests, and their eggs must 
never be touched, if you wish the hen to incubate them. Tliey may be taken 
and incubated under a common f )wl, or, better, under a turkey, and then the 
peahen may find another sly place and lay again. The peacock has the . 
reputation of being a bad father, and killing his own progeny. Therefore 
the hen hides from him as well as from men. 

189. Turkeys. — Every farmer can and should keep turkeys, and as there 
arc several varieties, he should get the best and keep no other. 

Turkeys are less mischievOTis than most other poultry, and in some cases 
tlicy are of great assistance to the farmer in destroying insects. The tobacco 
planters keep turkeys purposely to assist them in ridding the plants of the 
destructive worms. 

The turkey is a much more recent introduction to the poultry^-yard than 
the other varieties. It is said that the black sort was carried from its na- 
tive wilds of America to England, and that the American stock has been 
all drawn from the M'oods, and that the difi'erent sorls have come from a 
Southern and Northern race. We think, though, that it has come from 

136 DOMESTIC A^^MALS. [Chap. I. 

mixing the black wild variety with a white or party-colored one imported 
from the other side of the Atlantic. We prefer the pure black breed, for it 
gives us the largest and hardiest birds, and we think, also, the handsomest. 
The pure whi;e turkey, it is true, is quite ornamental, but it is not as hardy 
a sort as the black. As for yellow or party-colored turkeys, we would not 
have them on a place a moment longer than necessary to fatten, kill, and 
eat them. 

The wild hen turkey is wild in the extreme, while the tame one is so do- 
mestic that you may rob her secret nest every day of the new-laid egg, yet 
she will return again and again until she has finished her season, and then 
commence her period of incubation upon the empty nest. Now, if you have 
a nest prepared under cover, with the eggs in it, you may bring home the 
hen and put her gently upon her eggs, and she will manifest great satisfac- 
tion, and after carefully examining and placing them all right, will sit upon 
them as though the nest was all her own. Thirteen eggs are enough for an 
ordinary-sized turkey, and if she has a good nest she will cover that number, 
60 as to give all a fair chance to hatch. It is not necessary to turn the eggs, 
as some persons do — the hen attends to that — nor look at them until about 
the time the four weeks are up, when it will be well to remove the chicks as 
they come out, or else take out all the shells and rotten eggs, if there are 
any, to give the chicks room, for they generally are better oft' in a good nest 
than out of it. Shut the hen in a coop, where the chicks can bask in the 
sun, and not get in the wet grass. You need not feed much the first day ; a 
few bread crumbs will answer. Tlien give all they will cat of hard-boiled 
egg, chopped fine ; chopped meat, fat and lean ; curds, boiled rice or hom- 
iny, with cress, lettuce, and green onions. Don't stuff them with pepper- 
corns. The idea that that is necessary is all stufi". Liver, boiled and chopped 
up, is good food ; so is barley meal and suet. Melt the suet and pour over 
the meal and mix, and then crumb up when cold. Many green things may 
be chopped up and mixed with milk and water and meal. Don't try to cut 
up feed very fine. The young turkeys, you will find, can swallow big 
lumps. After ten days you may let the hen run, if the weather is fine. In 
bad weather they arc apt to take cold, and cramp, and die. Care and high 
feeding arc all that are needed to raise turkeys. 

We knew a woman in Louisiana who raised fifteen hundred out of sixteen 
hundred hatched. She had an old negro woman and a boy to attend to the 
Avants of the turkeys, and in wet, chilly weather the young broods were all 
gathered into a log-cabin, warmed by a generous wood fire. 

We have also before us another example of successful turkey raising by a 
woman, that is worthy of attention by some other fiirmcrs' wives, who may 
go and do likewise. Lydia Eldridge, of Andover, Mass., writes her expe- 
rience in raising turkeys, under date of Dec. 25, 1858 : 

" Last spring my husband jnirchased a farm in this town, and I obtained 
one turkey, and she laid 2-1 eggs, liatched them all out at one litter, and I 
raised them all. Yesterday we dressed the last of them. The united weight 

Sko. 9.] POULTRY. 137 

of the whole, when dressed, was 212i lbs. ; 198 lbs. were sold for a shilling 
a pound, New England currency, amounting in the aggregate to $33. The 
whole number at that price would have amounted to $3.5 41. Now I think 
that is doing quite well, and if anybody among your army of readers can do 
better than that, I think they deserve a premium ; but until that is done, I 
think I can claim the palm." 

And, in our ojjinion, she is fairly entitled to it. We hope, however, that 
some other woman will try to win it from her by fair conapetition in this ap- 
propriate field of woman's labor. 

And here is another of the same sort, which should tend to encourage 
other women to attempt the same plan to make a little " pin [feather] 
money." It is to encourage others that we collect and publish these 

" J. E. Alton, of Quinsigamond, Mass., writes us that Mrs. M. Bennett, of 
Auburn, Mass., had a three-fourths wild turkey, of very large size, which 
laid 11 eggs, all of which she hatched and raised. At six months old the 
united weight of the eleven was 220 lbs. Some of the male birds weighed 
34 lbs., and the lightest hens 17 lbs. One male sold for $7, and the whole 
for §55." 

These, however, are fancy prices ; but at the steady market prices of 
dressed turkeys, which will average 10 cents a pound wholesale, in New 
York, and considerably more for choice birds, the raising and fatting of 
turkeys is a profitable branch of farming. 

It is true that young turkeys, from the time they are old enough to turn 
out to range for themselves, are voracious eaters, and would desti-oy some 
crops, and so would swine, if permitted to run at large. The farmer finds it 
profitable to keep a lot for swine, and so would he to devote a whole field to 
turkeys ; and if he will do that, where they can forage for themselves, they 
will need very little attention, and will not be likely to get into much mis- 
chief. If rightly managed, a flock of turkeys will do more good than harni 
on a farm, for they are great destroyers of insects. It will be found profit- 
able to plant cabbages, turnips, bagas, peas, oats, wheat, and clover pur- 
posely for the turkeys to feed upon. This can be managed on a small scale 
to advantage by using a movable fence. We have no doubt about the fact 
that a turkey farm would be as profitable as a sheep farm, or a milk farm, 
or a beef or pork-making farm. In all new sections of country, where mast 
is abundant, turkeys will fatten upon it entirely ; and in all sections where 
field feeding is practiced, there is no better stock to run in a corn-field than 
turkeys. Even where corn is worth a dollar a bushel, it has been found 
profitable to feed it to turkeys to fetten them for market. One considerable 
item in the account in all the old States would be the value of the manure 
made from such feeding. 

The most important fact in turkey raising is not to overstock yourself, for 
then your flock of turkeys will become pests to yourself and neighbors — a 
set of marauding, piratical thieves. 

138 DOMESTIC ANIMALS. [Chap. 1. 

A writer in the Germantown Telegraj)h furnishes that journal with the fol- 
lowing statement : 

" Much has been published of late in our agricultural journals respecting 
the alimentary j)roperties of charcoal. It has been repeatedly asserted that 
domestic fowls may be fattened on it without any other food, and that, to-, 
in a shorter time tlian on the most nutritive grain. I made an experiment, 
and must say that the result surprised rae, as I had always been rather 
skeptical. Four turkeys were confined in a pen, and fed on meal, boiled po- 
tatoes, and oats. Four others of the same breed were at the same time con- 
lined in another pen and fed with tlie same articles, but with one pint of 
tinely pidverized charcoal mixed daily with their meal and potatoes. Tliey 
also had a plentiful supply of broken charcoal in their pen. Tlie eight were 
killed on the same day, and there was a difierence of one and a half pounds 
each in favor of the fowls that had been supplied with charcoal, they being 
much the fattest, and their meat greatly superior in point of tenderness and 

Ii. II. Avery, of TVampsville, Madison County, X. Y., is entitled to the 
first prize of honor for improvement in the breed of turkeys. From a cross 
of the American wild turkey, made fourteen years ago npon the best domes- 
ticated birds of pure black color that could be obtained, and by careful at- 
tention to breeding since that time, he has suceeodod in producing a male 
bird of superlative beauty, of glossy black plumage, which, at two and a 
half years old, weighed 3i lbs. alive ; and a female bird, two years old, 
weighing 20i lbs. alive ; and a female bird, one year old, dressed ready f >r 
the spit, 15i lbs. weight ; and as the stock has been continuously improving 
both in size, beauty of form, and plumage for years, it is impossible to 
determine any limit. lie has lately procured a pair of pure wild birds from 
Canada for the purpose of infusing a new strain of wild blood into his stock 
whenever he sees a chance to improve. The ordinary weight of male tur- 
keys, two years old, as they are ])repared for the market, will not exceed 15 
lbs., and a female of 8 lbs. is accounted a very good one. 

Just after the election of Mr. Buchanan, a cock turkey from Mr. Avery's 
farm, that weighed 35 lbs., was bouglit at $1 a pound, and sent to the Pres- 
ident to serve as one of the members of his (kitchen) cabinet ; and another 
of still larger size was presented to President Lincoln. 

Turkeys grow big in Illinois, according to a correspondent who writes 
from Stebbinsville, who says that 28 to 36 lbs. is not an nncommon weight 
for a wild turkey, and one old gobbler that he shot weighed 41 lbs., and spread 
a tail over nine feet around the circle. He thinks some of the brag " im- 
provers of the breed" had better send for some of the Illinois M'ild stock for 
a cross upon the biggest in all Yaiikeedom. 

B. F. Langworthy, of Alfred Center, objects to our directions to scald tur- 
keys. He says : 

" Scalded turkeys and chickens sell about two cents a pound less in Bos- 
ton than those picked dry — do not look as well, and certainly will not keep 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 139 

as long, nor jjlease the customer as mucli ; while the advance price will 
amply pay for the difference of time in dressing." 

On the contrary, in Kew York, dry-picked poultry does not sell as well as 
that wliicli is scalded. 

190. The Guinea-Fowl. — A union of two breeds of fowls is seen in some 
measure unite 1 in the Guinea-fowl. It appears to have some of the charac- 
teristics of tlie turkey and the pheasant. Its head is bare like the turkey ; 
its body and plumage, and general form and appearance, somewhat like the 
pheasant. Tiie plumage of the most common sort in this country is of a 
bluish ground, delicately spotted with white. The wing feathers are nearly 
white. There are also fowls of this family entirely white. The greatest ob- 
jection to the Guinea-fowl is the almost continual noise they make, which to 
some is intolerable. It is about as musical as the sharp squeak of a grind- 
stone or old cart. The noise is, however, tolerated for their good cpialities, 
which are not a few. Their noise tends to keep off hawks and other pests 
of the poultry-yard. They are very ornamental, and give a place a lively, 
pleasant appearance. Their flesh is pretty good for the table ; they are 
good layers, and their eggs are large, and rich, and good for cookery, but 
not so good as common hens' eggs for the table. 

The young chicks are hardy, and very pretty. There is no prettier sight 
in connection with poultry than a fine Guinea-hen with her brood. The 
lien sits a month, and nine eggs are enough for her to cover. The eggs may 
be hatched under a common hen, but a good sitter must be selected, because 
the time is longer than her own. Hard-boiled eggs chopped fine, bread 
crumbs, chopped meat or suet, are good food for young chicks. Some per- 
sons procure maggots on purpose to feed chicks. Any kind of small worms 
are devoured greedily by the young Guineas, which are real cormorants. 
They will eat a dozen times a-day, and a full supply of food is one of the 
great secrets of success in raising these as well as turkeys. 

There is no domestic hen that gives such a bountiful supply of eggs all the 
year round as a Guinea-hen ; consequently they are not good sitters, and 
other hens have to be used when it is desired to increase the stock rapidly. 

191. DuekSi — Wherever suitable conveniences exist for keeping ducks, 
they are not only ornamental to the farm, but profitable. Some of the vari- 
eties are particularly ornamental — the little "Wood duck the most so of all. 
The Pintail duck is a very neat-looking bird. The Aylesbury sort are pure 
white. The plumage of the drakes of some of tlie wild sorts which have 
been domesticated, is very beautiful. A few ornamental ducks might be 
kept upon almost every farm, and furnished with artificial water. "We 
would never raise but a single brood or two a year, except we had natural 
water. A drake and pair of ducks, with their progeny, would cost but 
little, and the amount of good they would do is incalculable. They are 
great destroyers of slugs, snails, worms, and all larvae ; and if you should 
see an old duck pitch into a nest of young mice, you would learn what good 
she can do in that way of ridding the farm of pests. 

14:0 DOMESTIC ANIMAI^. [Chap. I. 

Ducks' eggs are not esteemed for the table, but are ia cookery. The birds 
when well fatted are always salable, or good for liome consumption, and 
pay as well for the com they eat as anything in the poultry-yard. 

In selecting a variety of ducks, the purposes for which they are to be bred 
must be considered. If for ornament, select the prettiest. If for scaven- 
gers, we would use the common gray duck and drake with green head. 

The best white duck is the Aylesbury. It has yellow legs and feet and 
flesh-colored bill. White ducks should never be kept except where water 
and grass are both abundant. In the water or on a lawn they are pretty. 
In a muddy yard they are not so. 

There is a great variety of colors, but we recommend you to confine yous 
to ii single color, whether -white, black, gray, blue, or slate. Tlie featheis 
of ducks are as good as geese featliers, and some housewives pluck them in 
the same way. 

The duck sits thirty days ; and the hen should be confined an equal length 
of time, where the ducklets can go out, and into natural ov artificial water. 
You can not feed them too much, and they are no way dainty. Wiicn 
large enough, give them a wide range, bringing them home at night. The 
best food for grown ducks is Indian corn, and tlie best ducks for the table 
are domesticated wild ones, fatted on corn, or wild ones that have had a 
full range in corn-fields. Beech-mast also makes the flesh of wild ducks 

192. GecsCi — As geese are generally kept by farmers, they are neither 
profitable nor ornamental, but, on the contrary, an unmitigated nuisance, 
Ijcfouling grass and water, door-yards and roadsides, and always poking 
their heads through holes into mischief 

Geese never slionld be kept upon or about any f;xrm, except in a lot 
appropriated to their particular use. A man who would turn out a flock of 
geese upon the public highway to pirate their living, we would not trust 
about our hen-roost of a dark night. 

If geese are kept on a large scale, where water is good, and pastured like 
any other stock, and finally fatted for market, upon the same principle that 
pigs are fed and fatted, we will insure the largest profit from tlie geese, 
particularly if the best breeds are selected. 

Tiie Chinese or IIong-Kong geese and the Bremen geese arc much larger 
varieties tlian tlie brocd common in this country. The Bremen geese have 
pure wliite plumage, witli clean yellow legs and bills. They attain to 
great weight and age — twenty or thirty years, and as many pounds. The 
flesh of a young, fat Bremen goose is esteemed above all the domesticated 
ti'ibe, and the feathers are salable at the very highest rates. 

This breed is very prolific, laying twelve or fifteen eggs a year, and tlie 
goose are good sitters and nurses. Tliey are somewhat inclined to commence 
laying too early in the season. To prevent this, shut the whole flock in a 
dark room, about the twentieth of February, and feed and water once a day, 
and allow them an hour out once a week to wash and have a rim. In a few 


(Page 140.) 

Here is another picture, more beautiful, if possible, than ISlo. X. 
It comprises some of the most ornamental, and some of the most 
substantially useful birds that help to adorn our landscape. Many 
who read this book will have no opportunity to see the graceful 
swans that adorn the ponds in Central Park, New York. Let them 
study these hfe-pictures. The peacock is more common, yet many 
will get their first idea of its appearance from this picture. The 
Hong-Kong goose is also rare, and so are some of the ducks, and in 
many places the Guinea fowls arc unknown. The turltey is com- 
mon, still his likeness adds to the beauty of this scene. 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 141 

days after they are let out of jail, tlic geese will make nests and begin their 

The e"ggs should be removed carefully every day, and deposited in cotton 
in a dry, temperate room. Tlien when all your flock are ready to sit, which 
they will be about the same day, have capacious nests filled with chaffed 
straw, in which place twelve eggs for each goose. Where a good many 
geese are kept, it will pay to have an attendant, who should be careful to 
allow only one sitter to leave tlie nest at one time. When one comes off, 
sliut the doors of the other boxes till she returns. Tiiis will prevent con- 
fusion of getting on the wrong nests. By attention, nearly all the goslings 
of a large flock may be brought out in one day. 

Goslings should be left in the nest twenty-four hours after the}' hatch, par- 
ticularly if the weather is rough ; and as they are tender animals, they should 
be carefully nursed for a month, allowing them a small pool of water to 
bathe in, and plenty of green grass. The whole anscr family belong to the 
graziers. It is not necessary to feed goslings on much grain. 

The white China goose is as pure white as the Bremen, and should not 
be mistaken for that — -the Bremen is preferable. 

Tiie Brent and Sandwich Island goose are both very small varieties, well 
suited to situations on the salt water. 

Tlie Berwick goose is said to be a great weed-eater. 

The Canadian or wild goose variety are quite ornamental upon a well- 
watered location. This breed are greater worm and insect eaters tiian any 
other variety of the anser family. The hens do not lay until two years old 
in their domesticated state. 

193. SwanSi — This variety of ornamental birds has been but little culti- 
vated in this country. Tiio greatest collection is at the New York Central 
Park. This bird, of all others, puts the finishing stroke to the landscape 
inclosing a still lake oi- pond. 

There are white and black swans ; both are magnificent, but the white 
ones are the most showy on the water, where they float by the hour as still 
as the water beneath them. Although domestic and tame, swans are apt to 
go astray— to prevent which the last joint of one wing is skillfully dissee el. 
They are weed-feeders, but in places wliere they are generally kept they re- 
quire feeding. Their feed is most abundant in foul, shallow water, and they 
are often seen abroad at night in pursuit of food. Besides vegetables, they 
eat minute insects found in the water, and probably fish-spawn. 

The hen birds are very curious about their nests, and will select them, if 
possible, in some low bushy islet or headland, and under favorable circum- 
stances will liatch eight or nine young cygnets — the name which young swans 
are known by. The male birds allow no intruders about tlie nests or young. 
A man would find a terrible antagonist if attacked by a swan while swimming. 

The cygnets, when fixt, are esteemed a great delicacy upon the table, 
stuflPed with the lean part of a round of beef, seasoned merely with cayenne 
pepper and salt, and served with ricli gravy and currant jelly. 

j 142 DOiTESTIO AimiALS. [Chap. I. 

{ 19A. The Pleasures of Poultry Raising.— Besides the profit of a wcU-con- 

I i ducted i)oultrv business, there is an actual pleasure attending it over that 
of keeping any other kind of domeslic animals. Although the aim' appears 
always to be profit, we think if those wlio can keep poultry would look at it 
in another point of view, they would be better satisfied if it did not always 
putj. One advocates having u lawn and a flower garden attached to his 
house, saying that it will give new life and beauty to all around, and 
exert a beautiful and ennobling influence upon every member of the house- 
hold, and even visitors and passers-by will catch from it a sweet spirit of 
love and good-will ; but the cpiestion with the calculating and careful farmer 
is, 'Will it pay f So with every improvement upon his house and around 
his farm ; if lie does not see a prospect ahead of a return in hard money for 
his outlay of time and his work, the close-calculating man sots it down as 
being a thing that won't pay, and consequently abandons it entirely. 

It is just so in regard to poultry. Nothing is kept for ornament ; yet we 
have already shown that several varieties are not only ornamental, but prof- 
itable. But setting all other considerations aside, we would keep poultry 
just for the pleasure attending the sight of the birds, particularly the dear 
little chicks. Quoting from a sensible writer npou this subject, wc adopt 
his words : 

" One of my neighbors says it will pay to keep just as many hens as will 
get their living around the barn througli the winter ; but he tliinks it will not 
pay to keep them if they have to be fed. I will own that I have a few notions 
in common M-ith all poultry fanciers ; I look somewluit to the profit, but make 
it a i">oint of secondary importance. Farmers, in general, who keep hens, are 
more troubled with them than with any other one thing upon their farms, 
considering tlie amount of work which they do. They are always scratch- 
ing in the garden, digging up corn, or committing other depredations which 
keep the farmer and his girls running to keep them out of mischief." 

Of course they arc, because they must scratch for a living. If you don't 
want hens in mischief, feed them ; and at times M-hen it is really necessary, 
shut them in a poultrj'-yard and feed them, and adopt this simple ride for 
feeding fowls, known to most housewives in tlie countr}' who have charge 
of the poultry, but it may be useful to amateurs, and as it is very short, wc 
print it. Here it is: Don't feed too much. That is all ; though we may 
add that food should never be given to fowls unless they are hungry enough 
to "run crazy"' after it ; and just as soon as they stop running crazy, you 
stop throwing feed, and never — no, never — leave feed lying by your fowls 
" for them to eat at leisure." This same rule does pretty well for all other 
domestic animals — children included. 

If you don't feed your hens, and let them run in the garden, and they 
scratch, don't swear. It is natural for them to scratch, and altliough they do 
mischief, they also do good. Then, don't set the dog ujion them ; it only 
makes matters worse. There is a cure for your trouble : build a yard in 
which to shut the hens when they are troublesome in the garden, and train 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 143 

them 60 that thej will follow you like a dog, and then just at niglit take 
them out on a walk and see what an immense number of hurtful insects 
they will destroy. Your hens are the most profitable stock you have if you 
treat them rightly. Don't swear at them ; keep your temper and build a 
poultry -yard, but don't keep it always closed. It is better for you, and the 
hens too, to let them run at lai-ge at all times when" they are not liable to 
do mischief. 

We know of nothing around a country residence which gives the whole 
such a delightful and pleasant aspect as all kinds of poultry. IIow Down- 
ing loved them when he wrote : " With proper conveniences for managing 
them, they are among the most agreeable, profitable, and useful objects in 
country life. To children especially, fowls are objects of exceeding interest, 
and form an almost necessary part of the means of developing the moral and 
industrial energies of a country household." Oh, who would be without 
them? What country resident would neglect to have a noble collection of 
hens, ducks, and turkeys — with right modes to keep and manage them — to 
give a lively aspect to the scenery of his home, and impart beauty to the 
whole i^lace ? The merry cackle of the " old yellow hen" in the beautiful 
spring-time ; the love and kind protection manifested for her brood of youno', 
and then to see them huddle together under her wing ! The shrill sound of 
the cock as he proclaims the dawn of morning! Oh, who would not keep 
poultry, even if it dithit pay ? We would not keep 

Shaiifjhaes. — These Chinese monstrosities, on the contrary, we recommend 
every one to get rid of as soon as possible. Tiiey have had their day, and 
in spite of their crowing, Barnum's showing, and their owners' blowing, they 
are about blown out. It begins to be found out that 10 lbs. of meat can be 
produced upon two pairs of legs just as cheaply, and of much better quality, 
than upon one pair. No Shanghae, Cochiu-China, Chittagong, or any other 
imported breed of fowls has ever been, or will ever be, more esteemed on 
all accounts than the old yellow-legged Dominique, a domestic, handsome, 
and good-sized fowl. 

A particular friend, candid and intelligent, said to us lately : " I have 
tried almost all varieties of hens, and have settled upon the Black Spanish, 
or crosses of them upon the old stock, such as I can pick ujj in market at 
fifty cents a pair. I have also tried the experiment of keeping hens in the 
city and the cost of eggs. I keep them in a house at the back of the yard, 
letting them out for exercise just before roosting time, feeding them on 
scraps from the kitchen, potatoes, meat, etc., and corn, and find my eco-s 
cost just three cents a dozen on an average through the year." 

Another one, alluding to the fact of feeding poultry upon dead horses at a 
great poultry establishment near Paris, said : " The less hens I keep, I think 
the better for me. I have fed dead horses and all sorts of food, but I can't 
make it profitable to myself, or neighbors either." Of course not. Tlie last 
words tell the reason ; he lets them run at large, Jialf fed. 

195. Uen-Roosts and Poultry Vermiu.— The poles or ladders should be 


such that tliey can be whitewashed thoroughly every June, and the whole 
licn-liouse slmuld undergo the same operation. Poultry that are lonsy 
ehouUl have wood-ashes to wallow in, and a few handfuls of flour of sulphur 
etirred in among them makes them much more efficient. Good ashes will 
effect a cure, however. The fowls should have also dry earth or a dusty 
road, for it will be found that they will \isually alternate from one to the 
other. The best means for supplying lime to hens is to crack up fresh 
oyster-shells with a hammer or a sledge. Nests never should be made or 
allowed in the room where fowls roost. Keep it clean of all trash, straw, 
or nest-boxes. Have them in another apartment. 

A poulti-y raiser asks us to tell him how to get rid of the great nui- 
sance of lice u])on poultry. lie says he feeds well, and gives the hens the 
range of a grass lot, and has used turpentine sprinkled in the nests, and 
applied blue vitriol mixed with grease to their bodies, and anointed tlicm 
with lamp oil, and yet they are infested. The breed is that called Black 
Spanish, but t])at, we think, has nothing to do with the difficulty, which is 
so great that he is ready, if there is no remedy, to sacrifice his hens and buy 
his eggs and chickens. In a case like this, we should endeavor to purify 
the roost of ever^'thing that could give shelter to an insect, and perhai^s 
abandon the old roost altogether, and take care that the hens had a wallow- 
ing-box, well supplied with dry wood-ashes, renewed by a little addition 
every day or two, and feed sulphur occasionally in the food, and have a 
constant supply of lime for the hens, and keep them fat; and if all these 
would not preserve them free of lice, we would abandon the business. 

We have received several letters upon the important subject noticed under 
this head, giving "infallible" remedies to rid poultry of lice. The following 
looks as if it might be a " dead shot :" 

" I have had the care of a poultry -yard for a number of years. During 
that time a continual war of extermination was waged, and many expedients 
were resorted to, but never did anything, in a single instance, prove a safe- 
guard until tobacco was tried. This weed, in my case, has never failed in 
answering all practical purposes ; and this fact goes far to show that it was 
intended to act out higher and nobler ones than are commonly assigned to it. 
Tlie fine-cut is the best kind, and in using it spread it thickly over the sur- 
face of the nests, scatter it upon the floor, and suspend large leaves about the 
different parts of the house. This, used in connection with your directions, 
will put the enemy to flight, and with it will disappear all the annoyances 
your subscriber complains of." 

Another letter says : " Sprinkle Scotch snufl" plentifully on the fowls, so 
it will reach the sk!n, and I'll warrant that the vermin will be more scarce 
than even money in these 'tight times.' As you say, 'the roost must be 
kept clean ;' also lime must be sprinkled on it to destroy the efi"ect of the 
ammonia arising from their manure." 

Another says : " All the remedies named are not equal to onions, chopped 
fine and mixed with their food every day for a week. This will exterminate 

Sec. 9.] POULTRY. 145 

tlicin entirely from the hens ; and if tlie roosts and pea he washed witli onion 
water, they will trouble your hens no more." 

Another writer says, hens that roost upon sassafras poles are never 
troubled with lice. 

Now all these facts are worth knowing, as the vermin some years are un- 
commonly numerous, and will eat more poultry than the people will, unless 
we can head them oif with some of the remedies named. 

196. Water your Door-Yard Fowls.— Fill a bottle with water and place it 
bottom up through a hole in a board, so that its nose shall be inserted into a 
saucer, or any shallow, open vessel. As the fowls exhaust the water from 
the shallow vessel, the bottle will pay out new supplies. 

197. Mode of Killing Fowls. — A favorite mode of killing fowls with some 
persons is sticking an awl in the neck. They say that the blood adds to the 
good looks and value of all sorts of poultry. 

198. Corn-Fed Geese — Value of Corn. — The following detail of an experi- 
ment in feeding corn to geese, by Rufus Brown, of Chelsea, Orange County, 
Vt., is well worthy the attention of all farmers, and goes to prove that corn 
may be as profitably fed to poultry as pigs. Mr. Brown writes : 

" In answer to your question, ' Does anybody know anything about any- 
thing ?' I answer. Yes. I know how much ten quarts of corn is worth. On 
the 22d of November I shut up a flock of goslings, which, allowing the 
usual shrinkage for dressing, would not have dressed over six pounds per 
head, and would have been called scalawags, and sold accordingly at six to 
seven cents per pound. Taking the maximum (seven cents), they would 
have brought 42 cents each, dressed, at the time mentioned. They were put 
in a warm, well-littered stable, allowing three to four square feet of room for 
each, and kept constantly furnished Avith corn in the kernel and plenty of 
water; this constituted their entire feed. They M-ere thus kept till Dec. 9 ; 
they had then consumed 10 quarts each ; when, after allowing them one day 
of fasting, they were dressed according to the custom practiced from boyhood, 
and Avhich I respectfully recommend to others, viz. : after life had become 
extinct they were carefully scalded by immersing head first in boiling water, 
and allowed to remain about one minute, and then taken out head first and 
allowed to drain, and then covered in a thick woolen blanket and allowed 
to remain about five minutes; then carefully picked clean; then the intes- 
tines were drawn, their legs tied together and laid upon their backs on 
boards in a cool place, with their necks turned imder and laid close to- 
gether to keep the wings close to their sides. They were then considered 
choice, and sold readily to the dealer at lOi cents per lb., and averaged 
10 lbs., amounting to $1 05 each. Deduct 42 cents, and tiiis leaves 63 cents 
for the 10 quarts of corn, the market-price of which, at the time of feeding, 
was 75 cents a bushel. 

199. Prices of Poultry. — At the time of the great " poultry show" at Bar- 
num's Museum, in 1857, there was an auction sale, and the following prices 
were realized, and although fancy birds brought fancy prices upon the more 


common sort there was a dead loss upon the cost in England of about an 
average of 7 per cent. Tlie following are decidedly among the fancies : 

1 pair of white swans, $100 ; 1 white female swan, $50 ; 1 black female 
swan, $60 ; 1 pair of black swans, $99 ; 1 pair of Japanese peacocks, $100 ; 
1 pair of Barnacle geese, $40 ; 3 lioop-bill ducks, $75 ; 1 pair of golden 
plieasants, $18 ; 4 pair of English pheasants, at $10, $11, and $15 per pair ; 
3 male golden pheasants, at $5, $8 50, and $12 50 oacii ; 3 male silver 
plieasants, at $10, $10 50, and $16 each ; 1 pair of Call ducks, $15 ; 1 shel- 
drake duck, $10 ; 3 spoon-bill ducks, $15 ; 1 pair of pin-tail ducks, $19 ; 
1 pair of widgeon ducks, $12 ; 1 pair of widgeon ducks, $7; 3 widgeon 
ducks, $9. 

But the climax of fanc}' prices was reached in the sale of one pair of Man- 
darin ducks for $150. This was a beautiful pair of very rare birds, and we 
hope will remain rare — that is, that no more will ever be imported at that 
price. It was said that they cost 75 guineas in England. Mr. Barnum 
ofl'ered $35 advance upon the purcliaser's bargain. They are about the size 
of our common wood duck, and of just about equal beauty. It is certainly 
somewhat extraordinary that, with money "tight" with most people, any 
one can find loose change enough to buy ducks at $150 a pair. 

Tlie sales of Slianghaes, and birds in tliat line, went off at what the o\^Tier 
called "sickly prices." The following indicate the prevailing rates : 

1 pair of gray Dorkings, $10 ; 3 gray Dorkings, $15 ; 6 Sebright bantams, 
in two lots, $5 each ; 2 Sebright bantams, hens, $2 each ; 3 Golden bantams, 
$1 67 each ; 3 English bantams, $1 25 each ; 3 English bantams, $2 37 
each ; 4 Bramahpootras, 1 cock and 3 hens, $2 50 each ; 1 Poland hen, 
$1 25 ; 1 Bolton Gray hen, $1 25 ; 1 pair of Golden Ilamburghs, $2 25 ; 1 
pair of black Spanish fowls, $10 ; 1 pair of black Spanish fowls, $5 50 ; 2 
black Shanghae hens, $3. 

Turkeys. — 1 pair of beautiful white turkeys, $5. 

Geese. — 2 pair of Barnacle geese, $12 and $14; 2 pair of Egyptian geese, 
$10 and $16. 

200. Consumption of Poultry in New York. — To give some idea of the 
quantity of poultry consumed in New York, we give the following extracts 
from an article published about Christmas, 1857 : 

" On Dec. 23d the American Express Company had three car-loads to 
deliver from their depot in Duane Street, and about 11 tuns received from 
Albany by the steamer. On Dec. 24th their receipts are stated in round 
numbers at 40 tuns, making about 80 tuns received in two days by only one 
transportation line. 

" This Company's freight was nearly all from this State and Vermont, 
with a little from western Pennsylvania, and a very small portion from 
Ohio. A large quantity also came from the river counties by steamers and 
barges on the Hudson, as the mildness of the winter has enabled them to 
keep running. Western New York also sent in great quantities by the Erie 
Railroad, while every New Jersey railroad and numerous wagons brought 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 147 

vast quantities from tliat State, and some from Pennsylvania. A great deal 
also came from Long Island, and considerable from Connecticut. 

*' Tlie Messrs. Beatt^', who make a business of feeding poultry, had on sale 
at once by a commission-house, two days before Christmas, four tuns, all pre- 
pared upon their own premises, and some of the turkeys were as handsome 
birds as we ever saw, and sold for $3 and $3 50 each." 

Mr. White, of Chautauqua County, another great poultry feeder and packer, 
had as much more. It is really a blessing, both to producer and consumer, 
to have such men as those engaged in the business. The farmer particu- 
larly reaps a decided advantage, because euch skillful poulterers can and do 
give them more for their birds than they would get if killed by themselves 
and sent to market in the rough condition that much of the poultry comes 
into this market. For instance, we noticed, while one commission-house was 
selling well-prepared geese at 13 cents, a lot of geese, side by side of these, 
were offered and refused at 6i cents, the fault being that they were not well 
fatted, and were picked dry and roughly packed. 

Another lot of well-fatted poultry, well packed, and received in good con- 
dition from Vermont, the owner was fully convinced would have netted him 
from one to two cents a pound more if he had followed the directions given 
in No. 201, for killing and preparing poultry for market. 

Relative to the effect of the weather upon the business of fatting poultry 
and some other facts, we are indebted to the Messrs. Beatty for the follow- 
ing. They say : 

'• Owing to the lateness of the season, turkeys did not grow sufficiently to 
fat well for the early market. It is unprofitable to feed these birds to fatten 
them until they get their growtli ; and in such warm weather as we have 
had this season they do not fatten well, being inclined to wander. To fat 
turkeys well and cheaply we must have cold weatlier. It is owing to this, 
and having to feed a longer time, tliat we have not been as successful as last 
year ; and it was so warm when our Christmas lot was dressed, consisting 
of four tuns, that with all our appliances it required not only experienced 
skill, but great care to preserve the wliole in good order till ready for ship- 
ment. The fault with that lot [alluding to one then unpacking] is, that the 
birds were packed before all tiie animal heat was out of them. Tliis must 
be carefully guarded against in sucli weather as we have liad this season. 

"It has been very difficult for farmers to raise turkeys the past summer 
on account of cold and wet, so that the stock in the country is probably not 
more tiian half as large as it was last year, and that is the only reason that 
the price, notwithstanding the monc}' pressure, has kept up so well. We 
/lave fed this year 1,000 turkeys in one lot together, having had in all 1,300, 
and between 200 and 300 geese, with other poultry in proportion. We use, 
and recommend to others, to feed good, sound Indian corn, and with it a lib- 
eral supply of charcoal, which we consider indispensable. It promotes health 
and improves the quality of the flesh." 

Will all poultry-raisers remember this important fact, which alone is 

148 DOMESTIC ANIMALS. [Chap. 1. 

worth more to them than all we shall ever receive for preparing this volume 
of valuable information ? 

201. Preparing Poultry for Market. — "We have repeatedly published di- 
rections for preparing poultry for market, and we can not make a more 
valuable finish to this section upon poultry than by giving in brief such 
directions as all must rigidly follow, who send such farm produce to the 
great market of New York. The professional poultry feeders and packers 
need no instructions, but many farmers do. Many of them have already 
saved a handsome pcr-centagc on the value of their poultry by giving it a 
proper preparation, and others may. 

As a preliminary rule, and make it unalterable, never kill a bird unless 
it is fat. Kever cut ofl" the head of a turkey or goose, but hang them by the 
heels where they can not bruise themselves in the death-struggle, and stick 
them with a small knife and bleed them to death. Ducks and common 
fowls, if decapitated, should be held or tied and hung up to bleed to death. 
Never kill your birds until quite fat; you will lose in price, in reputation, 
and in weight. Never strangle them, so as to leave the blood in. Tlic hot 
plan is to tie all kinds of birds to a line drawn from post to post or tree to 
tree, and stick them just in the forward end of the neck, either with a broad- 
bladed awl or a penknife. It is imdoubtedly the best mode of killing. If 
the head is cut off, the skin recedes, and the neck-bone looks repulsive. To 
obtain the best prices, the birds must look good as well as be good. 

There is an exception, however, to the <ibove recommendation about stick- 
ing, for some dealers prefer the birds with heads on, and some do not. In 
some towns it is always customary to cut off all the heads. When this is to 
be done, draw the skin back from the head as far as possible, so that when 
you cut off the head, which should be done close to it, there will be somo 
loose skin to draw over the end of the neck bone, where it should be tied 
close. We doubt whether it is not worth while to pay freight upon heads. 
It is worth while to pay freight on the intestines, because the meat can not 
be kept sweet long after they are drawn and the air admitted inside of the 
body. Therefore, never draw a bird. 

It is a practice of some of the best poultrymen, while the birds are bleed- 
ing, to hold them firmly by one hand, and pliick the feathers with the other, 
as they come out easily while the fowls are warm. This treatment is only 
for turkeys and common fowls. Tiiey are then ready for scalding. Take 
hold of the legs, and i)lnnge the bi)dy in quick succession, two or three 
times, in boiling water. This should be done in a warm room, and the birds 
hung upon a line to pick clean, taking care not to tear the skin. Geese and 
ducks are plunged two or three times in boiling water, drawing them out by 
the head, and then wrapped in a woolen blanket to steam ten minutes. 
Take them on your lap to pick. Do not scald the legs, nor heat the bodies 
of birds against the sides of the kettle. After the birds are neatly picked, 
they^are put throngli the plnn)j)ing process. This gives them a finish, and 
increases their value in market. 

Seo. 9.] POULTRY. 149 

The rule for " plumping" is to dip the birds about two seconds into water 
nearly or quite boiling hot, and then at once into cold water about the same 
length of time. Some think the hot plunge sufficient witliout the cold. Tlie 
neatest poultry-dressers use both the hot and cold plunge. The poultry 
should be entirely cold, but not frozen before being packed. If poultry 
reaches market sound, without freezing, it will sell all the better. 

After plumping, hang or lay the birds where they will dry, and then 
remove them to the cooling-room, laying the bodies nicely arranged upon 
clean boards in a cold room till perfectly cool, but not frozen, and then pack 
in bo.xes, with clean rye straw, about 300 or 400 lbs. in a box, filled full ; 
mark the contents on a paper inside, and on the lid outside, and direct it to 
your commission-merchant plainly, and send it by express, and one invoice 
by mail, and place another in one of the boxes, if there is more than one, 
and mark on that, invoice, and then it will be opened first, and the merchant 
knows whence it comes, and what the consignment consists of. It is also a 
good plan to mark the contents of each box outside, thus: In box 

iVo. 1—12 turkeys, 1-14 lbs. ; 20 geese, 160 lbs. ; 50 spring chickens, 125 lbs. 

JVo. 2—100 fowls, 300 lbs. ; 24 ducks, 96 lbs. 

This lot will pack in two square dry-goods boxes. If clean hand-threshed 
rye straw can not be had, wheat or oat s'raw will answer, if clean and free 
from dust. Place a layer of straw at the bottom of the box, then alternate 
layere of poultry and straw — taking care to stow snugly, backs upward, 
filling vacancies with straw, and filling the package so that tlie cover will 
draw down snugly upon the contents. Couimon dry-goods boxes, holding 
not over 300 lbs., are the best packages. 

Never kill your birds on a damp day, nor pack them, if you can avoid it, 
except in a clear, cold, dry atmosphere ; and try to avoid night-work, when 
you are tired and your help sleepy, and all of you careless. 

No matter how light j-our boxes are, they must look clean, or your poultry 
will not sell at first prices. In packing, press the wings close, and ^ress 
the bird down hard on the breast, the legs extending back, and fill each 
course full, and then lay on straw and another course of birds. Nail tight, 
but don't let a nail project inward to tear the birds. 

Give your name and residence in full on the bill in the box and on the 
invoice by mail. Don't think because you know in what State you live, that 
everybody else will know it if you name the town. 

Never pack in barrels if you can get good dry-goods boxes, as the rolling 
of barrels injures the poultry, where it is likely to be much handled, unless 
very closely packed. Besides, it does not pack to as good advantage to the 
shape of the birds as it does in boxes. Small lots may be packed in "shoe 
or hat boxes," but they must be carefully hooped, and so should be all boxes. 
Don't use a rough, black board for a cover ; you had better spend an hour 
to plane it. Don't acknoM^lodge, by sending unplaned boards, that you 
don't own a plane. It is bad economy to use heavy packages, or have any 
waste room, because freight is charged by the pound, and for long distances 


the express charges may amount to four or five cents a pound, and all the 

weight of tliebox counts ctiusilly with the contents. 

It is a practice with some — and a very foolish practice it is— to stuff fowls 
just before tliey are killed, thinking to sell corn at the price of meat. Better 
give no food for twenty-four hours previous to killing. Food in the crop is 
liable to sour, and always injures the sale, for it looks to purchasers as though 
there was a design to cheat. 

You may pick turkeys and fowls dry if you will not tear the skin, and 
then scald them afterward by dipping them suddenly in and out of boiling 
water. Geese and ducks must always be scalded. Do not scald tlie legs too 
much, whether you pick iirst or afterward. Be careful of that. You must 
pick them clean, and the after-scalding makes them look plump and good. 
"Well-packed boxes of well prepared birds will keep sweet a long time in 
cool weather, and may be transported by express from Ohio for three cents 
a pound ; from Chicago and most of Illinois for five cents ; from Iowa for 
six or six and a half cents, and arriving in good order, will be sold at good 
prices, and your money remitted to you, less 10 per cent. Now, following 
these directions, and getting these prices, if it is better for you Ohio, Indiana, 
Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Michigan farmers to send j'our poultry East- 
ward for sale, you know how to do it ; and if it opens to you a new and im- 
proved market, it will bo worth more to you than the whole cost of this 
volume upon every box of poultry sold. In fact, these directions, given in 
part heretofore to the public, have been the means of saving great sums of 
money to the poultry producers. 

After boxes are packed, if there is any chance of not getting them imme- 
diately into market, or if a change in prices makes it desirable to liold back, 
it will be a good plan to place them v>-here the contents will freeze solid ; 
then they will stand a long spell of warm weather, such as makes badly- 
packed poultry slimy. If you could be sure of cold Aveather, so that the 
birdi would lemain frozen, very little straw would be requisite in packing; 
but as a general thing, a liberal allowance of straw will more than pay its 
cost of transportation in keeping the birds in good order. 

When packages are frozen before shipment, it will be well to advise con- 
signees of the fact, as we have known a thaw to come on gradually, until 
very warm, and have then seen packages opened in perfect order that were 
frozen up two or three montlis before. In fact, we knew one such that got 
mislaid and covered with empty boxes in a cellar, that kept sweet till it was 
accidentally discovered in May. 

Water for scalding any kind of poultry should be as near to the boiling 
point as possible, without actually boiling; the bird being held by the legs, 
sliould be immersed and lifted up and down in the water tln-ee limes ; the 
motion helps the hot water to penetrate the plumage and take proper cfteet 
upon the skin. Continue to hold the bird by the legs with one hand while 
])lucking the feathers with the other without a moment's delay after taking 
it out ; if skillfully handled in this way, the feathers and pin-feathers may all 

Sec. 9] POULTRY. 151 

be removed witliout breaking tlie skin. A torn or broicen skin greatly 
injures tlie appearance, and tlie price will be lo\v in proportion. 

Do not send the birds with tail and wing feathers in, unless it may be 
occasionally in a very handsome turkey. 

Geese always sell best the week before Christmas, and they should always 
bo stall-fed. Christmas prices are usually for Avell-fed geese, such as will 
warrant their iucreased production, since it is contended by persons whose 
opinion is entitled to great respect, that with proper care and skill, upon a 
farm well fitted for the business, a tun of geese can be made at the same 
cost as a tun of beef, leaving the feathers as an excess of profit. 

Now let all who read, remember that common-sense attention to these 
rules, in regard to preparing poultry, will often insure 25 per cent, higher 
prices than poultry of the same value originally will bring, if slovenly dressed 
and packed, and carelessly directed and stupidly forwarded, as often hap- 
pens. To bring the highest market-prices, poultry must be good and well 

202. Preparing Game for Markets — Wild turkeys, wild ducks, and the 
smaller birds should be packed in the natural state. In cold weather they 
may be packed snugly, backs up, with or without clean straw, taking care 
to keep the plumage as smooth as possible. If the weather becomes warm 
daring the transit, straw between the layers acts beneficially as an absorbent 
of moisture. Birds should never be drawn, and if mutilated by gun-shot, 
the market value will be much reduced. 

Woodcock, quails, and other small birds are in cool weather sometimes 
each wrapped in paper, and packed in dry sawdust. In hot weather tliey 
may be packed without the paper in coarse sawdust and ice. They seldom 
arrive in good order if more tlian twenty-fours on the way in hot weather. 

In venison it is best to send only the hind part of the carcass, including, 
say, two or three ribs Avith tlie saddle. The skin should be stripped from 
the fore part and carefully M'rapped about the saddle, thus keeping it clean 
and in good order. 

By the " game laws" of the State of Now York, the killing of any wild 
deer, partridge, quail, woodcock, or snipe during the months of February, 
March, April, May, June, and July is prohibited under penalty of $25 for 
each offense. 

Common carriers or their agents may, in the discharge of their legitimate 
business, transport deer or game during the inhibited period without viola- 
tion of the law; and commission merciiants and dealers are protected if they 
can show, to the satisfaction of the court, that the game in question came 
from any other State, or foreign country, or that it was not killed during the 
inhibited period. 

The taking of speckled or brook trout is prohibited between the 15th day 
of September and the loth day of February, under the same penalties and 
provisions as in the case of game; but the Cayuga, Seneca, Crooked, and 
Otsego lakes are excepted from this prohibition. 


203. Eggs— How to Produce Ihem in Winter. — Pork scraps or greaves, fed 
in moderate quantity, arc found to have a marvelous effect in tiic produc- 
tion of winter eggs. Give liens also sand, and gravel, and lime, and see 
that they have water. Egg-shells should never he fed whole, hut thcj' may 
be mashed up fine and mixed with feed to good advantage. Some hens 
are much more productive of eggs than others. Eighty hens, hclonging to 
Capt. Thos. A. Norton, of Yarmouth, Mass., have laid during one year 637 
dozen eggs. At the average price of eggs, that would be about $1 25 for 
each hen. 

20i. How to Detect the Sex in Domestic Fowls' Eggs. — A person who has 
paid attention to the subject declares that he can tell the sex of eggs in the 
following manner. lie says : 

"I began examining eggs, classing them according to the difference I 
found in the formation of each, marking each class, and putting them under 
hens as soon as opportunity offered ; when, iu less than twelve months, I 
was fully convinced that I had discovered either a method or the method 
of foretelling the sex in the egg, which was proved by ocular demonstration 
in the chickens produced. 

" At the large end of the egg there is a circular space or cavity containing 
air, which country folks call the ' crown' of the egg ; its proper name I know 
not. When you examine the egg, hold it, the large end uppermost, before 
a candle or gaslight, and in looking through it you will observe a dark cir- 
cular mark, something similar to the moon when partially eclipsed. This 
dark circular mark is the space filled with air or ' the crown' of the egg, and 
when in the center it indicates that the egg will produce a male. 

" My method of examining the egg is as follows : I make use of the thumb 
and forefinger of my left hand as two points, placing the small end of the 
egg on my thumb, my forefinger covering the large end of it, and as near 
the center of the end as possible. I then place the egg in this position 
steadily before a candle and gently turn it around ; if the crown be in the 
center it will be scarcely visible, the forefinger nearly covering it. On the 
contrary, if the crown be on the side you will only see it on one side of the 
egg as you turn it around."' There is a little contrivance, called the ooni- 
scope, to detect bad eggs. The egg is placed iu a hole of a box, and the 
light reflects on a mirror inside and tells unerringly the true condition of 
the egg. A little practice enables any one to discover whether eggs are 
fresh or not. 

205. Vitality of Egss AlTected by Transportation. — It has been stated upon 
good authority that railroad transportalion injures the vitality of eggs. That 
pack them as you will, if they are carried any considerable distance, say 100 
miles, the continued shaking will shake the life out of them. Traveling on 
the Harlem Road one day, we met an acquaintance carefully carrying a 
small basket in his hands. AVe remarked that he handled his basket as 
carefully as though he was carrying eggs. "And so I am," he replied ; " I am 
taking them about a hundred miles to a friend, and will insure every one to 

Sec. 9.] POULTRY. 153 

Iiatcli out a chicken, so far as transportation may aifect them. But I learned 
this by experience. I had a lot sent up the road only twenty-five miles, in 
the ordinary way, and did not get one chicken to fifty eggs, while out of 
another lot, carried in my hands in this way, not one missed," He said : " As 
a general rule, it niay be set down for fact, that eggs that have been trans- 
ported by railroad will never bring forth chickens." This is important in- 
formation, and should be well remembered. So, too, let it he remembered 
that eggs intended for incubation can not be too carefully handled in taking 
them from the nests and keeping them about the house till the hen is ready 
to take them in charge. 

206. Selling Eggs by Weight. — "We have frequently recommended that eggs 
should always be sold by weight, instead of by count. We recommended it 
because m'c thought it more fair both for producer and consumer ; but really, 
with the present system of trade, we do not see much to encourage the change, 
and nothing to encourage the production of eggs of a large size while small 
ones sell at the same price as the largest, per dozen or hundred, and consumers 
are guilty of the great foil}' of making no distinction. Do they ever think of 
the difference in weight ? Do they know how niany eggs there should be 
to the pound ? The largest-sized eggs of the common barn-door fowl weigh 
three ounces each, but the average is about ten to tlie pound. We inquired 
once of a retail groceryman, " Have you any fresh eggs?" " Yes ; there is a 
lot of fine ones, just in, all of this State, in good order." " At what price ?" 
" Twelve cents a dozen." " May I pick them out at that ?" " Oh, yes, cer- 
tainly ; they are all alike, good." Of this we had no doubt as to the good ; 
but that they were otherwise alike, we intended to prove that he was mis- 
taken. So we picked out a dozen and laid them in the scales, with a 1| lb. 
weight opposite, thinking they were just the size that takes eight to the 
pound, for that is just what good, fair-sized hen's-eggs always will average. 
These were a little heavier, and we added two more, and balanced two 
pounds — seven eggs to the pound. Then we picked out of the same cask 
thirteen more, and these weighed just one pound, not quite 100 per cent, 
dift'erence whether you buy large or small eggs. Now, if f;xrmers and fools 
meet, is it right that the one should take advantage of the other in this way ? 
or is it right that one man should keep a brood of small hens, the keeping 
of which costs less than half that of larger ones, and get the same price for 
the eggs ? If honesty is the best policy in all of our dealings, then it is the 
best policy to sell eggs by the pound, and not by the dozen. 

207. To Preserve Eggs. — We can not vouch for the following. If it is as 
stated, it is much more simple and convenient than packing in lime, salt, 
etc. " Provide a small cupboard, safe, or tier of shelves ; bore these shelves 
full of holes one and a quarter inches in diameter, and place the eggs in 
them, point downward. They will keep sound for several months. Other 
modes, such as packing in salt, etc., depend for their success simply on 
placing the points down ; the shelves are more convenient and accessible." 

208. Eggs Consumed in England. — In the statistics of British commerce, 


the lionie production is put down at 75,000 tuns annuully, which are valued 
at $;15,000,000. The iniportatiou of eggs for eight years, ending with 18i7, 
ranged from 96,000,000 in 18iO, to 77,500,000 in 18i7, and the importa- 
tions of the succeeding years are given in the following table : 


1848 .• 88.012,58.5 

1849 97,745.849 

1850 105,689,060 


1852 108,281.253 

1853 133,450,678 

1854 121,966,226 

1851 115,526,246 i 1855 100,005,200 

Tlie first six months of 1856, 68,062,600. This was nearly 14,000,000 in 
excess of the number received in the first six months of 1855, but not so 
large as in 1854. The imports of eggs in 1854 were, from 

Nnmber. 1 Unmber. 

Belgium 10,415,517 Spain 5,983,161 

France 104,126,918 Channel Islands 794.400 

Portugal 419,866 | Other parts 226,424 

Up to the 8th of August, 1854, eggs were entered by number, but since 
that they have been entered by cubic feet, internal measurement. In order 
to reduce the whole to a uniform standard, 200 eggs are estimated to be 
packed in one cubic foot. The duty charged is 8d. per cubic foot of eggs 
from foreign countries, and half that duty from British possessions. In 
the metropolis the egg trade is a very important branch of commerce, giving 
employment to sixty egg merchants and salesmen on a large scale, exclusive 
of the number of shopkeepers who sell eggs. Tliese salesmen distribute the 
boxes of eggs over the various consuming localities in light carts. 

The principal importation is from France and Belgium. Quantities of 
Portuguese eggs are occasionally imported into England by the Peninsular 
Mall steamers. The eggs of the Spanish fowls being very large, are much 
esteemed, and valued at Id. to l^d. each. Spain imports a certain quantity 
from the French province of Oran, in Algeri;i. Tiio eggs of the Bedouin 
fowls are sold in the European markets at 5d. to 6d. the dozen. 

The supplies of eggs sent from Ireland to Liverpool, and thence into the 
manufacturing districts, are enormous, frequently exceeding 1,000,000 a 
day. They are packed with straw in crates, boxes, or hampers. The crates 
contain from 6,(i00 to 8,000 eggs, the boxes about 2,500. Sometimes largo 
boxes contain 13,000 or more eggs. 

In 1852, 9,260 tuns of Irish eggs were imported into Liverpool, and it is 
estimated that that is not more than one fifth of the product of that island 

209. Eg^s in France. — M. Legrand, a French statistical writer, estimated 
the consuniption of eggs in 1835 in Paris at 138 per head of all the inhab- 
itants, and in the provinces at double that ratio. '• The consumption of 
eggs for the whole kingdom," he observes, "is estimated at 7,231,160,000; 
add to this number those exported and those necessary for reproduction, and 
it will result that 7,380,925,000 were laid in France during the year 1835." 

Since that time the production has largely increased. M. Armand IIus- 
son, in his interesting book on the " Consommation" of Paris, just pub- 

Number. Av. pr. per 1,000. 

1851 129,732,299 42f. 69 centimes. 

18-52 160,000,000 41f. 35 centimes. 

J653 175,000,000 

Sec. 9.] POULTRY. 155 

lislied, returns the number of eggs consumed in the French metropolis at 
175,000,000, or 175 to each head of the population, worth about $1 35. 
The value of the eggs consumed in Paris one year would be also about 
£300,000 ; but probably three quarters of a million sterling would be a 
nearer estimate of tlie poultry and eggs consumed annually in Paris. 

The consumption and prices may be judged of from the following figures: 

Number. per 1,000. 

1847 120,940,724 57 francs. 

1848 100,747,222 48f. 40 centimes. 

1849 ll:?,687,732 4Gf. 70 centimes. 

1850 124,597,150 43f. 93 centimes. 

A number of GalignanPs Ifessenger says that, in 1815, the number of 
eggs exported from France was 1,700,000 ; in 1816 it rose to 8,000,000. 
six years later, in 1822, the number was 55,000,000 ; and 99,500,000 in 
1824. In 1830 the number declined to 55,000,000 ; then gradually increased 
until 1815, when it was 88,200,000, for which an export duty of 114,000 
francs was paid. Nearly all these eggs go to England. The yearly consump- 
tion of eggs in Paris is estimated at 165,000,000, and the total consumption 
of all France at 9,000,000,000 ; so that, reckoning eggs at a sou, this single 
article represents 465,000,000 francs. 

210. The Egg Trade in this Country. — Steamboats and railways have done 
much to increase and improve the trade in poultry and eggs, in butter and 
milk, as well as in carcass meat and fish of all kinds, for tlie supply of large 
cities and dense populations in Europe and America, situate far from the 
chief seats of production or fishing. The poultry dealers of New York 
made their ajipearance on the shores of the great American lakes within a 
few days after the regular trains M'ere in motion on the Erie Railroad. 
Poultry and eggs M'ere swept away by them at an advance of 25 to 30 per 
cent, on their ordinary value, and a decided stimulus has been given to the 
production of poultry and eggs. 

The British American provinces are now supplying the United States 
towns with eggs, Avhich are imported duty free under the Eeciprocity Treaty. 
1,260 dozen eggs from Nova Scotia were entered very recently at the Cus- 
tom-house, Boston, in one day. In the season of 1852, about 8,000 barrels 
of eggs, containing 84 dozen per barrel, were shipped from the port of Mon- 
treal to the United States, and sold at about 16c. the dozen. 

One merchant in Marion County, Ohio, has shipped in one season 124,950 
dozen of eggs, in 1,785 barrels, costing, at 7 cents a dozen, $8,746 50. 

211. Packing Eggs for Market. — There is probably in no one article of the 
same relative value so much depreciation and loss from injudicious manage- 
ment and unskillful packing as in eggs. This is best illustrated in the 
"Western trade, especially during the wann season, when the average price 
of AVestern eggs rules, say, three to five cents per dozen below those from this 
State ; but at the same time we have some Western marks that bring nearly 
or quite as much as the best State, showing conclusively that it is entirely 
practicable to forward them in prime order from the far West. If the fol- 


lowing directions are intelligently carried out, there will be very little doubt 
of success. 

Be sure (especially in tbe summer season) that your eggs arc not only 
sound, but recently laid. Eggs may be "candled" or examined by the 
" ooniscope," and repacked at the West ; but if they are stale, though still 
apparently sound, they will be sure to reach this nuirket in bad order, or 
will so rapidly change, on being opened, that dealers will be sure to lose 
money on them. The motion of the cars over such long distances so mud- 
dles all eggs, not entirely fresh, that they appear cloudy and stale, and will 
soon spoil, if indeed they are not already unsalable. 

Use very strong, stiff barrels, put a little soft straw or hay evenly over 
the bottom with a stiff paper on the toj) of the straw, then oats or cut straw, 
say, two to three inches, then a layer of eggs, laid snugly together upon the 
sides, evenly imbedded in the oats, with the ends toward but about one inch 
from the staves. Cover the layer with oats and shake down gently but thor- 
oughly, leaving, say, one inch of oats upon the layer of eggs ; tlius continue 
shaking down thoroughly with each layer until the barrel is full. Place 
about three inches of oats over the last layer, then a stiff paper and a 
little soft hay or straw next the head, filling so high that the head must be 
pressed to its place by a lever or other mechanical power, that the contents 
may be held so firmly that they can never shift or loosen in the barrels. In 
the winter, to guard against frost, use more packing, leaving the eggs farther 
from the sides of the barrels. Use clean, bright oats; they are salable at 
all seasons, though of late merchants seem to ]irefercut straw. Mark plainly 
I lie number of dozen and the quantity of oats in each barrel. Be very ]iar- 
ticular to have the count right. A good reputation for accuracy is very 

One person says: "I use a board some six or eight inches square, with a 
loop or staple in the center for pressing each layer of oats firmly down. 
Tlici'e will be something gained by lifting and dropping the barrel square on 
the end, but not by shaking, as it disturbs the layers. When it gets too 
heavy to lift, use a board three fourths as large as the head, and get on it, 
increasing your weight with a spring, and on the head driving it in. The 
secret lies all in packing the oats. Oats are better worth sending to market 
than hay, and just as safe. I have sent ten barrels at a time without losing 
a single egg. You must pack tight. Remember that." 


This picture is intended to be botli suggestive and instructive. 
First, it suggests to any one who may chance to open the book at 
this page, the study of bee-culture, and the propriety of addhig this 
kind of farm-stock to tlic larger animals already owned. It is placed 
here for that purpose. It is to attract attention to the subject, and 
induce readers to turn over a few pages and read just enough to 
whet the appetite for more knowledge. It is instructive, as it 
shows the ditTerent form and size of the three classes of bees, so 
that any one, after studying this picture, need make no mistake. 
It shows how a swai'm issues from a hive and settles upon a limb 
of a neighboring tree, and how fearlessly the bee-keej^er approaches 
the swarm and puts it in the hive, which he will cover up and carry 
to its place on the stand. The author has frequently climbed to the 
top of a tree as high as this appears, and sawed oil' the limb upon 
which the swarm had alighted, and brought it down a long ladder 
to the hive, with no protection to face or hands. This picture, 
therefore, is intended to induce you to keep bees, and as a hint that 
you can easily learn all the art of bee-keeping. 

TllK AlMAur, TUB JJCiK^UK.m'KU A'C M.lfS "-Uttlv. 



i^^UR opening chapter was devnteil to a general sur- 
^^ vey of farm-stock. This will be tlevotod to observ- 
ations upon bees, birds, bugs, insects, and worms ; 
gs, cats, rabbits, rats, mice, moles ; camels as beasts 
burden ; goats of Cashmere, their value as farm- 
tock ; fish-breeding, for domestic use or market ; ani- 
s yielding fur, and alpacas, and other small stock of the 

In the leading article of this chapter we shall notice what 
may very appropriately be ranked as proiitable stock upon 
a farm, for the product of the liive often aftbrds a consid- 
erable income, and it is nearly all clear profit. Eirds, 
although they do not produce a direct income, are among 
the greatest helps to that end, for they are great destroyers 
of those pests, the bugs, insects, and worms, which we shall also introduce 
into this chapter. Dogs, as an adjunct of the farm, and when only kept in 
very limited numbers, are not, perhaps, unprofitable stock ; but as they at 
present exist, they are pests of the very worst kinds. Cats are a necessity, 
for without them we should be over-run with rats and mice, and so we give 
each a small space in this chapter. Eabbits, too, though small, must have a 
place ; and camels, though large enough to fill a chapter, like the rabbit, 
must be contented with a paragraph. And the Cashmere goat, the only one 
of any value to farmers, is as yet so little diffused among them, that we can 
only aftbrd space to give it a passing notice ; and the alpaca, an equally im- 
portant domestic animal, we must treat in the same short-hand way. 

Fish-breeding is of vast importance to every farmer who has the facility 
for making a fish-pond, and therefore we have added it to this second chapter 
of animals, domestic or wild, upon the farm. And finally, we add fur ani- 
mals, merely to call the attention of those who own suitable locations, to the 
fact that it is possible that such animals may be bred for their skins, to say 
nothing of the value of their fiesh. 

So much by way of introduction. Now let us take up our subjects, item 
by item, each under its appropriate head. 

212. Bees. — History of their Introduction. — It is not quite certain whether 
the honey-bee is indigenous to America or not. Our opinion is that it is. 


beciiuse several varieties now exist upon the continent, and certainly those 
in (.\iitral America appear to be natives, s> far as it is possible to trace their 
history. It is possible that the early immigrants, not finding bees in the 
di^t^icts first occupied by them, cither in New England or Virginia, did 
import them, though this supposition a}>pears doubtful when we consider 
th- length of voyages in that age of ocean navigation. And it is still further 
aga'nst the theory of importation, to know that as early as 16-tS — forty years 
only after Captain John Smith's advent — George Pelton, of Yii-ginia, was in 
possession of a good stock of honey-bees ; and tliey were noticed by Beverly 
as a common thing among the Virginia planters j^revious to 1720. 

In 1755, beeswax was an article of export from Savannah, Georgia. It is 
■impossible to state the quantity, because it is combined with myrtle-berry 
wax, and both are set down at 9G9 lbs. Five years later the quantity of both 
is given at 3,910 lbs., and in 1770 at 4,058 lbs. 

In 1767, the export tables show 35 barrels of beeswax, sent from the port 
of Philadelphia ; and only four years later the quantity is given as 29,261 lbs. 

The history of Cuba credits Florida with bees imported from there in 1764. 

The above facts prove that if there were no honey-bees in this part of the 
continent when our forefathers came to it, their importations were very suc- 
cessful, and the original stock was widely disseminated, and multiplied with 
great rapidity, for the census of 1850 gives the annual product of honey and 
wax at 14,853,790 lbs : and that at a time when the bee-moth epidemic had 
greatly lessened the stock in the country, and consequently the production 
was not as great as it had been. 

It is a fact, too, that the immigrants of the Northwestern Territory found 
wild bees scattered all through the forests of what is now Ohio, Indiana, and 

As an ofi"sct to this, it is a fact that the first American settlers of California 
found no honey-bees in that State, notwithstanding the fact of its early occu- 
pancy by the Spanish ; and the first bees ever seen in that State have been 
carried there from Xcw York, by sea, since 1850, and already the stock of 
bees has multiplied to an extent which would populate the State to as great or 
greater extent than the Atlantic States have been with both wild and domes- 
tic stocks, in a far less time than has elapsed since the landing at Jamestown 
or Plymouth rock, of tiiose who may have introduced the bee from Europe. 

Bee-culture in California has already assumed such an importance that 
associations of apiarists have been formed there, and the exhibition of bees is 
quite a feature at the State fair. Bees have become so numerous in the 
neighborhood of Sacramento, that they have been charged with extensive 
depredations upon the vineyards, by sucking the sweets out of the ripe 
grapes. Mr. Harbison, a large bee-keeper, who went from Pennsylvania 
with a large shipment of them, two or three years ago, however, denies the 
charge of bee^ injuring the fruit, and asserts that he lias proved by actual 
experiment that they will only attack the grapes after the skin has bui-st by 
the pressure of the interior growth. Still, there arc many persons who are 


deeply interested in grape-growing in that State, who think tliis business 
and bee-keeping never can flourish together. It is a matter that will prob- 
ably be investigated, since it involves two so great interests, particularly in 
California, where both branches flourish in so remarkable a degree of health- 
iness. Certainly, in no part of the United States has bee-keeping given such 
a promise of success. 

Bees, although they appear to thrive best, or at least with but little care, 
in warm latitudes, are not confined to those regions. An article now before 
us gives an account of the successful introduction of bees into Aroostook 
County, Maine, where the thermometer sometimes freezes, and afterward 
the discovery of a wild swarm in a hollow tree, which was removed to a 
hive and wintered in a dark, dry cellar, where they consumed very little 
honey. This is a very good way to winter bees in all cold regions ; for one 
of the greatest difficulties attending bee-culture in the most northern local- 
ities where they are found, is winter killing, not by freezing up in the hive, 
though that sometimes occurs, but by the bees being aroused from tlicir 
torpid state by a few sunny days, till tliey come out of the hive and are 
overcome by cold before they can return again, and thus perish. We have 
sometimes lost great quantities in this way, no farther north than lat. 41°. 

Notwithstanding bees appear to possess a considerable degree of reason, 
and the power of ratiocination (a power that many men do not possess), 
they are, like men and women, very apt to be caught by outside appear- 
ances, and venture forth from their warm homes iipon sunny wings, to meet 
the chilling blast of the outside world, and perish. 

Certainly, many acts of the honey-bee seem to be results of a reasoning 
faculty ; or is it that undeflned something that mankind call instinct ? It 
is indeed wonderful that so tiny an insect should possess a faculty scarcely 
possessed by man, of constructing its domicile, or rather store-house, so as 
not to waste an iota of material or space ; for that is a fact, in relation to 
the honey-bee's comb. And all their interior liousehold arrangements, the 
order of their work, family government, and perfect order and harmony, are 
such as should make mankind blush at their own inefficiency. Many of 
them should blush to think such an insect is so much more industrious and 
frugal than themselves, and so much more careful to lay up winter stores. 

One of the marks of reason, judgment, or instinct in the bee is manifested 
in their never leaving the hive, although ready to swarm, in a stormy day, 
nor when a storm or very high wind is approaching, which would be likely 
to blow away one portion of the swarm from the other. 

"When the swarm does come forth it seems to be all by a given signal, and 
the movement is sudden and simultaneous, guided by the call of their queen. 
If by any accident or mistake the queen gets separated, or fails to cluster 
with the swarm, it is idle to try to hive them. They will not take a new 
abode without a queen. Is it reason that teaches them that they must re- 
turn to the old hive, where they can make a new queen out of the young 
larvaB in the cells of the old brood-comb ? 



[Chap. IL 

213. Bee-IliveSi — Tlie best hive is one with movable supports for each 
slieet of comb. Although hives of tliis kind may have been patented, the 
patent is not good for anything, nor should it bar any one from tlie use of 
such a hive, because the invention is not new. Bevan, an English writer 
upon bees, described such a liive many years ago, as in use by him, and 
recommended it to others. More than twenty years ago, I described a hive 
for movable frames to sustain the separate sheets of comb, in the Albany 
Cultivator, and although the plan might have been patentable, it wa^s dis- 
tinctly stated that it was not, nor would be patented, and any one who liked 
it was recommended to use it. The form of the hive there recommended 
was to hang the frames by hook-and-eye hinges to the back of the liive, so 
that all would swing like the leaves of a book standing on its end. The 
front, or cover to tlie edge of the leaves, being opened, by turning it around 
to the left hand, leaf after leaf could be swung around to the riglit, and a 
sheet of comb cut out of any one, or the frame could be lifted oft' its liinges 
and taken away, and a new one put in its place. We thought the plan a 
more convenient one than lifting the frames out at the top of the hive. 

There is an objection to all movable frame hives, that they furnish har- 
boring-places for moths. They also, on the other hand, afford facilities for 
searching after them, and removing any infested comb. 

Bees are like any other wild insect or animal that has been doiucsticatod. 
By good treatment they can be made very domestic, so that their keeper can 
handle tliem about as easily as any other jiets. 

The next best form of hive is a square box, made of planed boards one- 
and-a-han or full one-and-a-quarter inch stuft', well seasoned, and tongued, 
and grooved, and firmly nailed together, so as to be watei'-tight, and nearly 
air-tight, and well painted. A box fifteen inches deep, and twelve inches 
across each Avay, contains 2,1G0 cubic inches — ten in excess of a bushel. 
Tills is a good size and form for a hive. It will add much to the conveni- 
ence of the liive to insert a pane of glass in the side opposite to the open- 
ings where the bees enter, which should be six (hiee-eighth-inch holes, an 
inch above the bottom. The glass should have a tight-fitting shutter ; and 
the bottom should be screwed on, or hinged and fastened with a hook so 
that it could be opened. If it is screwed on, make an opening two inches 
across in the center of the bottom board, with a close-fitting shutter that you 
can take out occasionally to allow the bees to sweep out their room. Open 
this only in the morning, and close it before night. There will then be no 
entrance for tlie moth except through the bee holes, and these the sentinels 
will guard. Bore four inch holes in the top, and fit corks in them. Have 
a cap fitted on top to cover four boxes, five or six inches square, made with 
one glass side. When the lower part is filled, which you can tell by observ- 
alion at the glass in the back, or by weighing, then open the top holes, and 
put on the boxes, open side down, and shut the cap over them, and the bees 
will soon find that they have extra stoi-e-room, and go to work and fill it 
with new comb, and fresh honey, free of bee-bread or biood-eomb. As soon 


as a box is full, take it off, and put an empty one in its place. A stock of fifty 
swarms in the spring will produce two thousand pounds of surplus honey, 
and increase to a hundred swarms in the autumn. Counting all labor be- 
stowed in tlie care of a stock of bees, and all expense of hives, etc., and the 
cost of honey is estimated at only three to six cents a pound ; varying with 
locations, and favorable or unfavorable seasons. But if it always costs ten 
cents a pound, tlie bee-keeper would find sale for it at a profit. 

214. Straw UiveSt — There are a few bee-keepers who still adhere to the 
opinion that straw hives are the best that can be used. We can not think 
so. Their greatest advantage is, that they maintain a more even tempera- 
ture than board hives, and are inexpensive. They can be manufactured by 
tlie winter fireside, and packed away for future use in a small space, one 
within another. WJien wanted for use, a couple of cross-sticks must be put 
in to support the comb, as the hive is in the shape of an inverted bowl, and 
not as good to support comb as a straight-sided box. It is a good plan, 
however, to use the supports in all hives. They should be so arranged that 
they can be easily taken out, as it would greatly facilitate the removal of 
comb. If straw hives are used, they should be made to hold a bushel, of 
clean rye straw, tied very tightly together, so as to make the walls full an 
inch and a half thick, and smooth outside and in. Never use them after tliey 
got old, and never place them whei-e they will get wet. If kept dry, the 
bees winter in straw hives better than board ones. 

It lias been i-ecommended to make cases for board hives, to set over them 
in winter as protection from the changes in the weather. If this is done, the 
cases should be taken oif as soon as possible in the spring to prevent moths 
making harbors in tiiem. 

215. Patent Hives. — We have never seen a patent for a bee-hive, nor " bee- 
palace," that we would give a dime for. They are no better than any handy 
man with tools can make himself. As to " bee-palaces," where bees are to 
live in community, the thing is preposterous. It is founded upon wrong 

Bee-houses, whore collections of swarms in separate hives are to be kept, 
we have tried as well as the community system, and repudiate both. 

Movable comb-hives may be made without buying a patent, by making a 
chest of the capacity to hold a bushel, besides the frames, or say 15 inches 
square inside, and make 10 frames of strips of boards an inch and a half 
wide, nailed together flatwise at the ends so as to form sashes that will set 
in the box and just fill it. Bore holes for the entrance of the bees, through 
the sides of the box and frames. Tlie lid of the chest shuts tight, and may 
be locked. When you want to draw a frame, insert a common wood-screw 
or two to pull it out by. You can tell as soon as you lift it a little, whether 
it is full or not, and if not, try another. 

"We have tried several patent hives, and if choosing between any one of 
them and a " bee gum," would take the latter for all practical purposes ; 
not that we would recommend farmers always to use hollow logs, though 


we certainly have seen some most successful bee-keeping where the swarms 
were kept only in tliat rough way. 

216. iVherc to Keep Hives. — Tlie location and mode of support arc im- 
portant matters in placing bee hives. And here again, the most " rough 
and ready" way has always appeared to be the best. We have frequently 
seen the hives standing about here and there, without any regard to order ; 
some directly on the ground, and some on a flat stone or board ; notwith- 
standing such apparent disregard to all care, the bees were doing better than 
others where every attention was paid to them. We do not advocate quite 
so much negligence, but we do believe the best situation for hives is in an 
open field, set a rod or two apart, or, rather, suspended to stakes. An 
orchard, where the trees are somewhat scattering, and the grass short, or kept 
short by n)o\ving or pasturage of some geese, turkeys, or sheep, is a good 
place for bee-hives, one under each tree. A hive may be fastened to a tree 
or post by two hooks and staples, care being taken to fix it so it will be firm, 
and not liable to be shaken by wind. It may also be fixed upon two stakes 
set in the ground just wide enough apart for the hive to slip in between 
them and rest upon a block nailed upon each side of the hive, notched on 
the lower edge so as to clasp the top of the s'ake to prevent slipping side- 
wise. Hives placed about in the open ground should have a board laid 
over the top, wide enough to give some shade to the hive. Lay this board 
on four pebbles, or four nails driven in to keep it half an inch or an inch 
from the top. This shade-board may be held in its place by a screw or nail, 
or a stone. The hive need not be placed more than six inches from the 
ground. A little strip, an inch wide, should be nailed on level with the 
entrance holes, for the bees to alight upon. 

If hives are placed under a shady tree, they will need no other protection. 
If placed close together, a rough shed may be built over a row of hives, so 
placed that it will shade them from nine till four o'clock in the day. A hive 
should be painted white, because that color does not absorb the rays of heat 
as much as a dark color. Sometimes a hive becomes heated so as to soften 
the cement, and let the comb fall to the bottom. 

217. Swarming. — The location of bee-hives should be convenient to low 
bushes, such as lilacs, althcas, or small jieach or phun trees, for them to 
light upon when swarming. We have heard of clustering bees upon a large 
woolen stocking, stretched over the end of a pole, and held up in the midst 
of the swarm as they collected after leaving the liive. When all have been 
gathered in the cluster, it is gently laid upon the table and the pole with- 
drawn, and a hive set over the bees. ^Vl"ter they go up into the liive, the 
stocking is taken away. 

Swarming is just as natural for bees as calving for cows. It increases 
the stock. The process can not be interfered with advantageously, either to 
retard or increase the operation. 

The owner of bees should make them as well acquainted with his person 
as his horse or dog is, and then lie can handle them as easily. 


It is true there are some persons with whom the bees never will become 
friendly, or allow of any familiarity. Such persons should never try to 
handle bees. Others (the writer is one) can handle them with impunity. 
I have often had them light upon my face, and head, and hands, and remain 
as long as they liked, and then go away again. 

When a swarm comes out, go immediately right into the midst of it, and 
do not be alarmed if it should cluster upon your hat. Such things have been, 
and no harm come of it. You must show no excitement ; be moderate and 
calm in your movements, as if surrounded by a flock of wild birds which 
j-ou were afraid of scaring away. An excitable man will be very apt to 
alarm the bees, and an angry one will be sure to make them angry and 
drive him from the field. 

It sometimes happens that bees leave the hive pre-determined to fly away. 
In such eases it is difiicult to stop them. If it is a dusty time, and they are 
gathering for flight so low that you can throw handful after liandful of dust 
among them, you may succeed in confusing them until the}' will alight. 
Swarms have been stopped on the wing by firing a musket directly forward 
of them, so that both noise and smoke would confuse them. It is idle to 
fire after them, and shot sent into the swarm may kill the queen ; wlien the 
bees must be returned to the hive, or put into one witli a piece of brood-comb. 

Some people make a great noise, beating drums, tin kettles, barrels, or 
blowing horns, when a swarm comes out. The philosophy of this is, that 
the noise may drown the voice of the queen, and thus confuse the bees, 
when they may alight ; but, as a general thing, noise will have no more 
effect toward stopping runaway bees than runaway horses. 

The very best thing that we can recommend to a new bee-keeper is : Be 
gentle, and keep yourself on familiar terms with your bees. Make them 
familiar with your presence and personal appearance, and always go among 
them, as near as possible, in the same garb ; and never in a filthy garb, 
right from the manure-yard, perhaps ; and never in your shirt-sleeves, reek- 
ing with perspiration. There is nothing more offensive to bees ; for they 
are as neat as they are industrious, and never sweat anything out of their 
little bodies but clean white wax, of which they build their cells. 

Thoroughly domesticated bees seldom offer to fly away when they swarm, 
if j-ou have conveniences for them to cluster ; and such bees are always 
easily handled, so that they can be hived without difiiculty, even by the 
(/udewifii or «hildren, if the gudiirnan is awa'. 

If you are afraid of stings, put on gloves and tie your sleeves down ; tuck 
your pants in your boot-tops ; put on a broad-brimmed hat, with a piece of 
mosquito-netting over it, tucked in close around your neck, and thus jiro- 
tected, the most timid may go among his own, or strange bees, which always 
are the most dangerous. 

If you happen to go near bees, and one comes at you, do not fight, run, 
nor scream. "Walk away gently, and aim to get behind a bush, tree, fence, 
or buildinw. 

i I 


Place your hive in the place where it is to stand, as soon as possible after 
the swarm is in ; because tlie workers commence comb-building immediately, 
and moving disturbs them, and if only a day or two at work, moving may 
break down the comb. 

218. What a Swarm Consists of. — A swarm of bees in working order con- 
sists of one queen, two or three hundred drones, and from ten to fifty 
thousand workei-s. The queen would more properly be called a mother, as 
she is so, in fact, of all the colony. The drones are the males ; they never 
work nor fight — they are stingless. The workers are imperfectly developed 
females. According to T. B. Miner, author of a bee manual, the swarm in 
the spring consists of tlie queen and about two or three thousand workers, 
and these increase as soon as food can be provided in spring, enough to make 
a new swarm, which goes off, led by the old queen, while a new one is pro- 
A'idcd for the old colony, which also goes oft' sometimes, with another swarm ; 
and occasionally a third one is sent off, and finally, the swarm remaining con- 
sists of about 20,000 bees, and all but two or three thousand die off before 
spring ; the life of a bee being calculated at only about nine months. 

A queen-bee is so distinguished from other bees by lier shape, size, and 
color, that when you have once learned how, you can always distinguish 
her. So you can by the noise she makes. A queen is larger than a worker, 
but not as largo around as a drone, though longer ; and the rings of lier 
abdomen are less fully developed, and consequently not so plainly distin- 
guishable. In short, a queen is more wasp-like in her form than a drone ; 
and is of a darker color, particularly upon the back part of the abdomen ; 
while on its under side it is of a yellowish hue. The wings of the queen, in 
proportion to her body, as compared to either of the others, are wider, i j 
stouter, and shorter. She is seldom on the wing ; only at swarming time, ' ; 
and when she cohabits with the males. It is supposed that she is always : ■ 
impregnated during her flight, and that impregnation in the fall, before the ' ■ 
drones are destroyed, serves for the eggs she will lay in the spring. Those 
Avho have made observations upon them, declare that a queen-bee is capable 
of laying hundreds, perhaps thousands, of eggs a day. i 

Drones are idle fellows ; their only service being attendance upon the > 
queen. Their life is a very short one ; generally from April to August ; say j : 
four months. None are allowed to live over winter. You must not mis- i ' 
take the slaughter of the drones for war with other bees, which sometimes 
occurs. I 

Tlie workers are always busy whenever it is possible for them to carry on j 
their labors. They often l)egin the very hour they enter a new hive to | ■ 
build comb, and the second day the honey and pollen gatherers begin to j I 
bring in their stores. To work to advantage they must have a good house, j I 
SoiiK'tinies when a swarm goes into a hollow tree, the labor is immense, to i | 
clear out and fit the room for use. So it is when put into a mean, dirty hive. | 
It rctjuires a great deal of labor sometimes for the bees to stop up the cracks : 
of an oil] liivi! with bee-glue — ;>, substance gathered in the forest, and not i 

1 i 


made by the bees. It is Iiarder and stiffer when dry than wax, and entirely 
unlike it. 

219. Weight of a Swarm. — It is estimated that a full swarm of bees should 
weigh 11 to 12 lbs. Hence all excess over that is honey and comb, so that 
the quantity can be ascertained by weighing the hive, if the weight of that 
is known, as it always should be, and marked upon it when new. 

Hives should always be constructed with some conveniences for weighing, 
such as a staple in the top, if that is a fixed one, or one in each side, and 
then have a movable bail to hook in, to attach to the hook of the weighing 

220. Bee-Pasture and Bee-Feeding. — It has been a question for a long time, 
whether a country could be overstocked with bees so that their pasturage 
would be short. In a conversation with Mr. Quinby, one of the greatest 
apiarists in the country, we learned his opinion was that it was next to 
impossible to overstock any section with bees. We find from the " Bee 
Journal," published in C4ermany, that the same opinion prevails there. Mr. 
Dzierzon, president of a convention of apiarists at Munich, says : 

'• I have numerous accounts of apiaries, in close proximity, of from 200 to 
300 hives each. Ehrenfels had 1,000 in three separate establishments, but 
so close that he could visit all in half an hour's ride. In Kussia and Hun- 
gary, apiaries numbering from 2,000 to 5,000 are not nnfrequent ; and we 
know that as many as 4,000 colonies are often congregated together on the 
lieaths of Germany. Hence I think that we need not fear that any district 
of this country, so distinguished for abundant natural vegetation and divers- 
ified culture, will very speedily become overstocked, particularly after the 
importance of having stocks populous early in the spring comes to be under- 
stood and appreciated. Mr. Kaden, one of the oldest contributors to the 
'Bee Journal,' says that a district of country can not be overstocked with 
bees, and that however numerous the colonies, all can procure sufticient sus 
tenance, if the surrounding country contain honey-yielding plants in the 
usual degree ; where utter barrenness prevails, the case is different, of course, 
as well as rare. 

" According to statistical tables, there are 600,000 colonies in the province 
of Lunenburg, or 111 to the square mile. The number of square miles in 
^ this country stocked even to this extent are, I suspect, 'few and far be- 

" A German writer alleges that the bees of Lunenburg pay all their taxes, 
and leave a surplus besides. The importance attached to bee-culture accounts 
in part for the fact, that the people of this district (so barren that it has been 
c lUcd the ' Arabia of Germany') are almost without an exception in easy 

" In the province of Attica, Greece, containing 45 square miles, 20,000 
colonies are kept, or one colony to each inhabitant, producing annually 30 
II IS. of honey and two of wax each. East Friesland (Holland), containing 
1,200 square miles, has an average of 2,000 colonies to the square mile. In 



1857, the yield of lioncy and wax, in the Empire of Austria, was estimated 
to be worth over seven millions of dollai-s ! !" 

Could not still more favorable results be obtained in this country, under 
a rational system of manajrement availinj:; itself of the aid of science, art, and 
skill ? The island of Corsica produces about 800 lbs. of honey to the square 
mile, per annum. 

There is no probability that any section of this country will reach such a 
state of productiveness in this generation. Yet we hope all who read these 
extracts will think what an immense loss is sustained annually by our neg- 
lect to employ harvesters to gather the great crop of sweets that might be 
saved if our bee population were large enough to gather it all. 

Upon the subject of bee-pasturage, and those plants from which bees draw 
their stores of honey, we tind some useful hints in Harbison's work on Bees 
and Bee-keeping. He says : 

" The best kinds of early pasturage are the alders, hazel, and willows, some 
of which yield honey and others pollen ; most species of flowers yield both. 
My observations lead me to believe that the male flower yields pollen, and 
the female honey ; I have frequently seen bees gathering both honey and 
pollen from the same kind of flowers at the same time. It can be tested by 
examining both the honey-sack and the baskets on the thigh. These trees 
arc the first to aftord the bees provision in the spring ; where these abound, 
the bees advance earlier than elsewhere. The soft maple {acer ruhrum) 
yields a considerable quantity of honey very early, if the weather is fine ; 
the golden or yellow willow also yields supplies quite early ; peach, cherry, 
and pear trees put forth early ; gooseberries, currants, strawberries, etc., all 
afford rich supplies. To close this list of early flowers, the dandelion and 
apple come forth in rich profusion, all of which arc of the utmost importance 
for the prosperity of the bees during the season. If this early pasturage 
fails, or if the weather should be so unfavorable as to prevent the bees from 
gathering a supply of provisions, they will fail to rear a sufficient quantity 
of brood to swarm early or to harvest the clover honey to advantage. 

" It is but seldom, if ever, that a sufficient quantity of hoiu^y is gathered 
from these early flowei-s to cause the bees to store it in surplus boxes, yet 
enough is frequently obtained to fill up a large portion of the combs from 
which the honey has been consumed during the winter, and serves to supply _ 
their immediate wants until clover blooms. 

" The next pasturage comes from turnips, cabbage, and the hard maple 
{accr saccharinum), which yield a considerable quantity of honey, but lafer 
than the soft maple. Turnips produce a very copious supply of both honey 
and ])ollen, and if left standing in the ground over winter, they bloom just 
at a time to fill the interval between the fruit-tree flowers and the clover. 
This is also the case with the cabbage family, all of which yield large quan- 
tities of honey. A field of either turnips or cabbage at this early season is 
of greater value to the bees than the same quantity of either clover or buck- 



" I would here impress upon the minds of all bee-keepers the importance 
of cultivating a field in turnips each year. In the fall gather in all the large, 
fine ones, either for marketing or for feeding sheep and cattle during the 
winter, for which they are very valuable, and will well repay the expense of 
raising them ; enough small ones will be left standing in the ground over 
winter to make a rich field of pasturage for the bees in the spring, leaving 
the ground in fine condition for a crop of buckwheat, or to sow down in wheat 
in autumn, or to again put down in turnips. 

" The various kinds of blackberries, and the wild or bird cherry {cerasus 
serotina), yield honey, and serve to supply to some extent the interval above 
referred to. We have also a species of kale, or wild turnip, which if sowed 
very early in the spring will commence to bloom toward the latter part of 
May, and is very valuable. 

" Kaspberries of all kinds yield an immense amount of honey, and con- 
tinue blooming, giving a succession of fresh flowers, for about three weeks. 
But few if any flowers produce such quantities of honey as the raspberry, in 
proportion to the number of flowers. 

" Catnip, mother-wort, hoarhound, honey-suckles, and various other kinds 
of flowers, put forth about the same time ; each would be of great value, if 
in sufficient quantities. 

" Then come other early summer flowers. At the head of this list pre-em- 
inently stands white clo\'er {trifolium repens), which is found along the road- 
sides, in meadows, grain-fields, gardens, pasture-fields, in fac^, it may be seen 
everywhere. The seeds, which are very abundant and very small, are 
driven in every direction by the winds ; this has been overlooked by previous 
writers. The heads, which contain the seed, are quite small and very light ; 
the stalks stand erect until winter sets in and the ground is frozen, by which 
time the stalk of it has become brittle, and every wind breaks off and rolls 
along the ground a portion of these little seed-pods, until they meet some 
obstruction ; here they will germinate. Thus they are scattered in every 
direction. I have frequently seen them driven furiously on the crust of a 
shallow snow, through wliich the heads would project. The value of this 
clover is entirely underrated as a pasture for cattle or horses, as well as bees ; 
it is always selected by stock in preference to the red clover. The honey 
gathered from it is of the highest excellence, both in beauty and flavor ; and 
I believe in good seasons, all the bees, in any neighborhood where it 
abounds, could not gather the fourth part, so great is the quantity produced. 

"The tulip-tree {linodendroii), or poplar, as it is called by some, by others 
white wood, is a great producer of honey. Nothing of the tree kind that I 
have ever seen exceeds it ; the flowers expand in succession, are of a bell- 
like shape, mouth upward. In dry, warm weather I have seen a teaspoonful 
of pure honey or saccharine matter in a single cup or flower. Bees work 
upon it with the same vigor they manifest when carrying honey from some 
other hive, or when it is fed to them. 

"The yellow and black locust trees yield large quantities of honey. 


"The linden, or bass-wood {tilia Amcricanu), produces honey to a large 
amount. All of these varieties of trees should be extensively cultivated, 
both as shade and ornamental trees, as well as for their timber and the vast 
(juantities of honey they yield. Sumach also produces honey bountifully ; 
the difficulty, however, is, tliat there are but few places where these are 
found in suflicieiit quantities to be of importance. I trust they will be 
extensively cultivated. 

'• The common black mustard is one of the most valuable plants to culti- 
vate as a pasture for bees ; it is easily raised, by simply sowing it on ground 
when well plowed and pulverized by liarrowiiig smooth, and then brashing 
it in witii a light brush or very light harrow. It should be sown early in 
the spring, on good ground. 

" Those interested in bee-keeping should give the cultivation of mustard 
some attention. As a bee-pasture it has few superiors, yielding both pollen 
and honey in great abundance ; it begins to open its flowers wiien quite 
young and continues as the l)usli expands, until it becomes very large ; each 
day brings forth new blossoms. A field of mustard in full bloom is a most 
magnificent sight ; it is like a vast pile of golden flowers ; tlie plants are 
completely enveloped with flowers, from the ground up as high as a man's 
head. There is no other plant that I ever noticed that produces so many 
flowers to any given quantity of ground, nor yields so much honey. 

" In almost any of the Atlantic States it serves to fill the Interval tliat occurs 
between tlie closing of the white clover and the opening of the buckwheat 
flowers, a period of about four weeks, wliich is the very best part of the year 
for gathering honey, as the weather is generally warm and calm ; hence tlie 
propriety of raising this crop to employ the bees profitably. 

" The lionoj' produced from it resembles that yielded from the linden, both 
in color and taste. 

" Mignonette, a modest, unpresuming little flower, found in all well- 
assorted collections, is one of the greatest value as a bee-pasture, if grown in 
sufticient quantities to be an object. It is low growing and spreading in its 
habits, similar to white clover, and yields both honey and pollen ; it will 
bloom continually, from the middle of June until killed by frosts in the fall. 
It is easily raised in large quantities if the ground is clear of weed seed, 
])lowed, and well pulverized by harrowing before sowing. Sow thinly and 
brush it in with a light brush ; all that is required after this is to pull out 
any large-growing weeds that may chance to make their appearance before 
the mignonette spreads over the ground ; where it takes possession of the 
ground, it needs no further care. A bed of these flowers will perfume the air 
for quite a distance around, so rich is it. Bees will work on it from daylight 
until dark ; two or three may be seen at once on a single head or flower. 

"The cephalanthus Canadensis, or butter-hush, which grows in swamps, 
and low, wet, marshy grounds in almost every part of the United States, 
preserving the same appearance wherever found, produces honey of the 
highest excellence. The honey gathered from this shrub is of a very light 


straw color, of a thick, heavy body, and very excellent flavor. Bees thrive 
and store honey very rapidly when they have access to large quantities of 
these flowers. The time of blooming varies with different localities, but it 
generally begins to put forth flowers about the first of July, and continues 
for three or four weeks. 

" In all places where buckwheat is raised, it becomes an important acces- 
sion to bee-pasturagc. A field of buckwheat yields an incredible quantity 
of honey, which perfumes the air for a considerable distance around. When 
the weather is favorable, the bees store honey from it very rapidly, faster at 
times than they can build combs to receive it. I have seen them fill pieces 
of old combs laid close to the entrance of the hive, with honey, and have 
known colonies to fill four boxes of honey, or about 50 lbs., during the con- 
tinuance of buck\Vheat. This is by no means an uncommon occurrence, and 
goes to show that this honey harvest is one of great importance to the bee- 
keeper. Buckwheat may be sown about a month earlier than usual, to fur- 
nish pasturage to come in about the close of clover, to great advantage." 

In relation to artificial feeding there are many opinions. There is prob- 
ably no better food for bees than brown sugar, moistened with honey, such 
as can be bought at a low price by the barrel or gallon in any town. Add 
just enough honey to the sugar to make it into a dough by kneading. Put 
this feed in a shallow tray, with a few straws on toj), and let the bees take 
their own way and time with it. It is well to give a little salt to bees, if 
they can not get it conveniently. The best way is to place a lump of rock- 
salt near the hives, and there let it remain year after year. 

A practical bee-keeper says : " If the season has been nnpropitious, the 
liives should be carefully looked after. If any contain less than 20 lbs. of 
honey, the swarm will need to be fed either with honey alone or mixed with 
sugar diluted to the consistence of honey, poured on to pieces of empty 
comb, and placed in the hive in such a manner that bees from other hives 
will not find it. Perhaps the best method is to introduce the feed into the 
boxes directly over the bees ; but should it be a common box hive, it may 
be placed on the top of the hive, where there is a communication through 
the top, and {^lacing a cap over the whole ; and then gently raj^ping on the 
top of the hive, the bees will press up through and find the feed. The feed- 
ing should be done during warna weather." 

221. New Food for BefS.— The fact has been discovered in France, that 
bees will feed upon the oil-cake (soaked in water) that is made in the manu- 
facture of oil from the Seaaimu/i Orlentalc, known here as the bene plant, so 
that they can be much easier wintered ; and it is said the increase of stocks 
is wonderful in comparison with those not thus fed. 

The Flore dcs Serres, from which we borrow this, assures us that the results 
have been astonishing, not only in a large increase of honey-comb, but in 
enabling the bees to multiply beyond all belief; nearly ten times the quantity 
being bred in consequence of the facility aftbrded of obtaining abundant 
and, as it would seem, excellent nourishment from this unexpected source. 


Tlie experiment could be tried in this country by apiarians planting the 
bene seed, and bruising and soaking the seed of the crop, and feeding it to 
the swarms after the natural food fails. 

One of tlic greatest troubles in bee-lcceping appears to be the want of suit- 
able food early in the spring to enable the swarm to prejjare for a new col- 
ony that may go out early enough in the season to lay up, not only their 
own stores for winter, but a surplus for their owner. Many swarms that 
have an abundance of honey for their own use and to spare in the spring, 
are inactive for weeks after the spring has become wa,rm enough for them to 
work, because they have nothing to work upon. The first business is not to 
gather honey, but pollen, to make bread for the young bees. So, although 
tlie weather is warm enough, and the bees lively enough, until the buds 
afford pollen, they have nothing to work upon to enable them to be in season 
with the new brood, to produce early swarms. This is a serious drawback 
in late seasons, and in situations where pollen-producing plants are not 

Mr. E. T. Sturtevant, of Cleveland, Ohio, claims that he has discovered a 
remedy for this difficulty, and that he can bring forward his bees some two 
months earlier, and get good swarms the first of May. His plan is to feed 
his bees with unbolted rye-meal, strewn upon boards convenient to the hive, 
the bees pitching into it at once and working diligently, and in such an earn- 
est way as fairly to scramble over one another. It is a liiiit worthy tlie 
attention of all bee-keepers. 

A few years ago, a bee-keeper in Wurtembcrg discovered that bees ex- 
tracted food from carrots which had been rasped and cooked for stock, and 
thereupon he boiled some to a jelly and placed it near the hives, at a time 
when the fields afforded no food, and he found that they worked upon it as 
though the gaccliarnm it contained was particularly agreeable. 

We suggest an experiment with carrots cooked in this way, by bee-keepers 
in this country. We would also try parsneps ; and, where they are grown 
abundantly, sweet potatoes. And since we know that bees are so fond of 
sweet apples in summer, why not keep them to feed swarms when needing 
artificial feeding in winter. It may add as much to the health of bees to 
feed green food, as it does to health of other farm-stock. Let the exiieriment 
be tried. 

222. Vfntilation of HivcSi — A great deal has been said about the necessity, 
on account of ventilation, of making hives open at the bottom. In rejily to 
this, let men think that bees in a wild state ]>rosper M-ell in the hollow of a 
tree wliere there is but one small hole for entrance of the bees or venlilaiion, 
and that open-end liives, standing on a bench, are often cemented fast to it, 
and sometimes lioles left, for ventilation, are sealed up as closely as though 
air was poison to the inmates of tlie hive. 

If you wish to ventilate, bore a two-inch hole into the upper part of the 
large box, and cover it on the inside of the box and on the outside of the case 
with wire gauze, fine enough to keep out ants and other insects, for a venti- 


lator. Bore incli holes through into both of tiie upper boxe^, and cover in 
the same way. 

Mr. Quinby says tliat he regards •proper ventilation as very important, 
and jQt proper ventilation is very inipertbcily understood. He also says : 
" Any way to get I'id of the moisture." Tlie presumption is, that he would 
not freeze the bees at the outset as one of the ways, for that would surely 
prevent moisture ; and if the mochts operandi of some who give directions 
how to ventilate should be put in practice in very cold situations, the bees 
are just as surely frozen. 

Moisture accumulating on the inside walls of the hive has caused the de- 
struction of more strong colonies of bees than any one other casualty, except 
the fatal way of some bee-keepers to get rid of the moisture by opening wide 
the apertures in the top and also in the bottom of the hive, and thus causing 
a current of external air to pass up through the interior — precisely the 
method to cool a hive in hot weathei* — and also thus rendering the bees more 
exposed and liable to be frozen than they would be situated on the exterior 
of the hive. Proper ventilation is simply to give free vent for the air at the 
top of tiie hive, and not admitting any or but very little air through the 
bottom. Under all circumstances it is requisite to regulate the openings in 
the bottom with those in the top, which amounts to about the same thing 
without the drawbacks of inverting llie hive. 

There is a new form of bets-hives, used by J. L. Scribner, of Montpelier, 
Vt., a successful producer of lioney, so much so that he carries off all prizes 
at the county fair. 

Tliis hive, being made of straw, serves admirably for ventilation. It is 
made of a frame of square sticks, say one inch diameter, and in capacity 12 by 
13 inches, and 13 inches in hight, with a flat board roof projecting two inches 
each way. The frame is nailed together ; the lower girts are placed i inch 
above the bottom of the posts. The frame is covered with straw sewed 
together, just as it is in straw hives, with a hoop at the bottom, made of 
strips of boards one inch thick and two inches wide nailed together. In this 
hoop a notch 2i inches long, i inch deep, is cut for the bees. Plane all the 
wood, and use none but clean rye straw. On the roof, over suitable holes, 
the boxes for storing honey are placed. It is thus described by Mr. Scribner: 

"The advantages of this hive over all others that I have used are very 
material in my view. It is generally conceded that straw hives are the best 
to winter bees in ; not altogether because they are so much warme'r, but 
because they will ' keej) dry,' and the frost does not accumulate as in board 
hives. Every experienced apiarian knows that in wooden hives there is a 
continual dampness, arising in part from the breath and effluvia of the bees. 
Not so in straw hives. Straw being of a dry and absorbing nature, the 
moisture is taken up. Now, I have learned that straw hives are as much 
better in summer as in winter, especially in the season of breeding, when we 
are subject to frequent and sudden changes of the weather, such as damp, 
chilly nights and hot days. The temperature of a straw hive is more even ; 



[Chap. II. 

it does not heat excessively in hot weather nor cool suddenly, as do hoard 
hives. The natural warmth of the bees is retained, which is particularly 
conducive to their health and prosperity. Hence there should he no uiuue- 
cssari/ ventilation by leaving an 'open space,' as has been recommended by 
some, 'all around the bottom of the hive.' Especially in damp, chilly 
weather, bees will breed faster and gather more honey in straw hives than 
in board hives, according to my experience. One reason for their gathering 
more honey, probably, is because the young brood comes to maturity faster, 
consequently there are more ' laborers in the field' in the early honey sea- 
son. This hive combines all the real advantages of every patent hive that 
has come to my knowledge, while it obviates all the objections and retains all 
the good qualities of ' the old-fashioned straw hives.' 

" The less a fanner bothers himself with patent hives and bee-palaces, and 
the less he tries to counteract nature, the better he will be oflf. I am heartily 
sick of 'patent bee-hive?,' and it is time to abandon them." 

223. Taking Honey, and How to Keep the Bees from Stin.ging.— When bees 
are alarmed for the safety of their stores, they immediately rush to the cells 
and fill their sacks with honey, apparently to provide against any contingency 
that might arise. When in this condition, tliey are perfectly harmless, never 
volunteer an attack; consequently, to tame bees, or render them docile and 
easily driven or handled, sinq^ly take advantage of this peculiar instinct. To 
confine them closely to their hive, rap repeatedly on its sides for a few min- 
utes; this alarms them, and they will gorge themselves with honey, when 
tliev can be handled and controlled at pleasure. But we have adopted the 
following plan, which we find best adapted to our use, and recommend it to 
others, with the assurance that it will give satisfaction: Take clean cotton or 
linen rags, sucli as are used in the manufacture of paper ; make a nice roll of 
these, about an inch in diameter, and from six to twelve inches lung; wrap 
this pretty tight, either with narrow sti'ips or shreds torn from clotli, or, what 
is more convenient, use wrapping yarn of some kind ; prepare a number of 
such rolls, and keep on hand in some box, or any dry place, near the apiary, 
together with some matches. When yon wish to open a hive or perform any 
operation, set fire to one end of a roll of rags; it makes quite a smoke, with- 
out any blaze. Upon opening the hive, blow the smoke vigoi-ously among 
the bees for a minute or two, which terrifies them, M-ithout doing any perma- 
nent injury; they immediately rush to the cells and rill tlieir sacks with 
honey, when you can proceed to lift out one comb after another, and perform 
any operation with perfect impunity, v>-ithout any fear of being stung, unless 
by those from other hives near at hand. Should there be some, liowever, 
that would show signs of battle, blow a little more smoke upon them, and 
repeat it from time to time until the close of the operation. Toward the 
close of the honey season, when they are rich and increased in stores, they 
are harder to control than at any other season of the year; when this occuis, 
put a small portion of tobacco or a few grains of sulphur in your roll of 
rags; this reudei-s the smoke more pungent, and will easily subdue the 


bees. Dried puff-ball makes a smoke that subdues bees without injury to 

224. Bee Moths,and How toProtectBecs from Them. — ISTumcrous patents have 
been taken out to sell bee-keepers, to keep the moths out of the hives. All of 
these contrivances fail in their object, or else have objections to them which 
have prevented their general introduction. One now before us consists of a 
set of swinging doors, just such as we have often seen at cat-lioles, hung at 
the top so as to fiiU into place as soon as pussy gets through. For the bees, 
a small tin, about the size of a dime, is hung in the entrance hole, which the 
bee can push open, but tlie moth can not — that is, so says the patentee. 

Where open-end hives stand upon a bench, we have seen moths prevented 
from injuring the swarm by raising the hive, during the moth season, about 
half an inch from the bench. The theory of tliis plan is, that the moth in- 
serts her eggs between the bottom of the hive and bench, where they hatch, 
and the bees can not get at the worms ; but if it is raised up, there is no op- 
portunity for the moth to deposit her eggs where they will be safe. 

A cheap, good moth-trap is made in the following manner: Take a piece 
of thin pine board, or a shingle, a few inches square, and with your pocket- 
knife cut three-cornered grooves on one side, and lay it, grooved side down, 
on the bench under the hive. The moths will find a secure place from the 
bees, and deposit their eggs, wliich you will find, or the worms, and destroy, 
by looking at your traps every few days. 

Mr. Qiiinby recommends the following mixture as a moth-trap : Sugar or 
molasses and a little vinegar and water, making the "contrast" agreeable — 
the sweet and the sour. Put this in shallow dishes, saucers, or tin baking 
dishes, and set them among the bees at evening. Next morning, moths of 
all kinds will be found in the liquid, and may then be strained out and de- 
stroyed, and the mixture used the following evening. 

225. Introduction of Bees into falifornia.— The honey-bee is not a native of 
California. The credit of introducing them is due to a man by the name of 
Shelton, who, after doing mucii for the interest of agricultural improvements 
in that State, lost his life, while still a very young man, by the explosion of 
a steamboat boiler on the Sacramento Eiver. He imported, in March, 1853, 
the first bees into California. He left New York with twelve stands, or 
hives, and arrived with but one ; from this one about one lumdred and fifty 
swarms were credited in 1858, and, of course, have largely multiplied since 
that time. There have also been very large exportations made by steamer 
from New York. The Messrs. Harbison, of Pennsylvania, have been very 
successful in shipping and selling swarms, and have also established an ex- 
tensive apiary at Sacramento. The common price of some of the first stocks 
sent to or produced in California has been fifty to one hundred dollars a hive. 
The Harbisons made their first shipment, we believe, in 1858-9. 

It has been thought singular that our people found no bees in California, 
when they were so abundant in Mexico and Central America. Since the 
introduction of bees from New York, a California jiaper states that several 


attempts to import bees from Mexico have failed. Captain Macondray had 
one or more Mexican swarms, but tbey soon dwindled away. In 1S59, Mrs. 
Sutter, daughter-in-law to General Sutter, had forty-four hives packed on the 
backs of Indians to Acapulco, and brought on the steamer to San Francisco; 
two or three weeks after their arrival, there remained but two hives contain- 
ing bees; they were taken to San Jose, but in a short time they also died. 

It also says, and so does every one we have conversed with on the subject, 
that California is admirably adapted to the houcy-bcc, as the experience of five 
years fully demonstrates. In San Jose Valley, Sacramento Valley, Shasta, 
liidwell's, Stockton, Columbia, and Napa they multiply rapidly and store 
abundance of honey. The willow affords the first material for pollen. The 
bees commence gathering it by the 1st of January ; about the l.">fh of Janu- 
ary it is in bloom, and affords considerable honey, though slightly bitter. 
The bees gather pollen and honey from the willow till March. The wild 
mustard aftbrds an inexhaustible supply of honey from the 1st of April to 
tlie middle of June. Later in the season, honey is obtained from buckwheat 
and honey-dew. 

Ilouey made from mustard blossom, from which most of the honey is 
gathered in San Jose Valley, is excellent, and has sold in San Francisco at 
from $1 25 to $1 50 per pound. New swarms issue as early as the 15th of 
April, and the swarming season continues to the 16th of June. 

226. StinglfSS BeeSt — There is a good deal said of late about going to Brazil 
after " stingless bees.'' What is the utility- ? We have a better sort liere, 
and their stings are in no manner objectionable. In fact, they arc advan- 
tageous to the apiarian. They guard the store from thieves of all sorts, and 
tiic}^ arc much better honej'-makers than the South American variety, which 
has no sting, all of M"liich are of a much smaller size than our common 
hone3'-bee, and some of them make honey that is sour, and others give it a 
bitter flavor. This may bo owing to the flowers it is extracted from, as we 
have known bees here to make uneatable honey. 

Wells, in his cxjilorations of Honduras, gives the names of fourteen varie- 
ties of honey-bees. Honey is very abundant and low priced. He was 
charged but ten cents a quart for it. He says: "The bees are diminutive, 
and mostly stingless. Swarms of them may be seen every daj', M-hen travel- 
ing in the open country, hovering around some decayed tree, and but little 
trouble is necessary to bear the whole establishment to the nearest hacienda. 
One of the proprietors said he had sold enough, since owning the estate, to 
bu}' all the drilling, 7)ianios, and articles of that description, required at the 

The most curious thing about most of these bees is that they do not store 
Iioney like our bc-js, in combs of hexagonal cells, but in little sacs, two inches 
long, arranged in rows along the sides of the hive. The cells for the young 
are placed in tlie center. 

227. Italian Bees. — During the year 1860, a good deal has been said about 
the advantage to be derived from the introduction of Italian bees into the 


United States, and importations have been made for that purpose. The plan 
is to breed queens, wliich, after being impregnated, are introduced into com- 
mon hives, after removing the old queen. 

A writer in tlie Country Gentleman newspaper gives the following as the 
history of the introduction of Italian bees into this country. He says: 

" Mr. P. J. Malum, of Pliiladelpliia, is mentioned ' as being the first to 
land this new variety on our shores.' As a matter of history, I would state 
that this is not so. For several years past the attempt has been made yearly 
by Mr. Richard Colvin, of Baltimore, Samuel Wagoner, of York, Pa., and 
Rev. L. L. Laiigstroth. These attempts were unsuccessful, owing to bad 
packing and mismanagement in transportation, until the autumn of 1859, 
when Mr. Colvin received some Italian stocks, and hoped to have queens 
from them for sale the past season, but these stocks, unfortunately, did not 
survive the winter. Next in order of date is Mr. Mahan's importation from 
Germany, which was successful on account of his personal supervision. 
Sliortly after Mr. Mahan's importation, Mr. S. B. Parsons, of Flushing, Long 
Island, succeeded in getting a few swarms alive from Italy. From them he 
has succeeded, aided bj' several skillful' apiarians, in raising a large number 
of queens, which have been sent to nearly every State in the Union, includ- 
ing California, under the supervision of Mr. Bigelow, a successful apiarian. 

"The last successful importation was by Messrs. Colvin and Wagoner. 
All the above named are exerting themselves to multiply their stocks of 
Italian bees, and they will doubtless have a demand for all the queens and 
stocks they can supply next season, as the interest in this new bee is deserv- 
edly increasing. The question will naturally arise. Of whom shall I pur- 
chase ? Are these importations equally reliable, and if so, have all taken 
the same pains and been equally successful in keeping the breed pure ? I 
Avould here remark that some situations are more t\ivorable for maintaining 
purity than others. Tlie Italian bees now in this country are from three 
ditferent sources, and every one should decide for himself to which stock he 
should give the preference, and if the most reliable man and the most reli- 
able bee can be found working together. 

"Two of the importations are from Germany, and one from Italy. Of the 
importation from Italy there can be no reason to question its purity. Tlie 
two importations from Germany are from ditferent breeders. One of the 
importations fiom Germany I have the fullest confidence in from personal 
inspection ; and if the other be equally good, we are in a fiiir position to 
have the country m'cU supplied with pure stock in a few years, provided 
sutficient interest is taken to maintain purity." 

228. Reasons for Keeping Bees. — -In this section we have only aimed to say 
just enough to encourage every reader to keep bees, Avho has anything like 
fair facilities for them to obtain a supply of honey from gardens and fields, 
which they will do if within a mile, and some bee-keepers say if within two 
miles. But it is not profitable to allow bees to go so far, when the bee-keeper 
has land upon which he can grow bee-food just as well as he can grow food 



[Chap. IL 

for any other farm-stock. The fact that bees obtain a great deal of food 
from fruit-trees should encourage farmers to cultivate both together. And 
if he plants along the roadside long rows of willows, maples, lindens, pop- 
lars, iic will not only have the advantage of them for shade and ornament, 
but his bees, if he has them — and if not, let him be encouraged to get them — 
M-ill find a great field up in the branches, that they can use as pasture. 

The strongest reason tliat can be given for keeping bees is this simple fact: 
Tlicy afford more clear profit than any other stock ever kept on the farm, 
and, generally speaking, the more labor is bestowed upon them in providing 
good liives and pasture, the better they pay. 


eason and Reli^^ion in Preserving Birds. — "We don't 
know how much we have written, said, and sung 
to induce farmers not to destroy the birds, nor 
allow them to be destroyed, because we look upon 
them as part and parcel of the farm-stock, and of 
more importance to the farmer than some animals lio 
icps, at much more expense than his stock of birtl?. 
We say his stock, because we consider the birds on tlie 
trees just as much the property of him who owns tlio 
trees as the trees themselves ; and he who would steal 
one would steal the other. A man who would come upon 
my farm and shoot my birds, without my permission, is 
not one of the noblest works of God. No man who takes 
reason for a guide, who owns a farm in any of the old 
States, can consent to have his birds destroyed. He certainly will not de- 
stroy them himself, after he has taken time to think upon the subject. It is 
our object to induce him to think, and the best place to do so is to go out 
among them in a bright spring morning, and hear their music. 

Go out among the trees in the orchard or through the grove, or look into 
the hedge-rows or peep under the old bridge down the lane, or go to tlic 
barn ; go anywhere, everywhere, where you will, and at this season — that is, 
lovely May season — you will find the birds — busy, merry, singing birds; 
hard at work they are, too, building their houses — cradles, rather — and all tlic 
time keeping up a concert of sweet music. Various too are their tastes in 
selecting their sites for their nesting-places, some hiding away from man, 
some coming up to his very door, or, like the martin and swallow, under his 
roof and protection. Robin-red-breast almost invariably comes into the 
orchard, sometimes on the trees, sometimes on the fence, sometimes, where 
kindly treated, under the shed by the barn or house. 


Seo. 11.] BreDS. ■ , 177 

Tlie woodpecker — the same one that -was tapping " the hollow beech-tree" 
— makes holes in the old apple-trees, into which for years afterward the 
pretty bluebird creeps and rears its annual brood. 

The blackbird, the most numerous of the family of small birds, mostly 
nests in the swamp ; except one variety, imitating the crow, that goes into 
the highest trees, such as the spruce, with a dark, thick top, where boys nor 
small sliot can not come. 

In the meadow we find tlie sly nest of the quail and lark and several 
small birds ; and in the thickest bushes, the home of the brown thrush. He 
is a natural musician, a sweet bird full of glee and cheerfulness ; but the 
merriest and most amusing of the whole family is the noisy little bobolink. 

We look upon birds as among the essentials of a landscape, and would as 
soon think of chopping down tlie orchard, shooting the turkeys, and wring- 
ing the necks oif of the barn-yard fowls, or making mutton of the sheep or 
giving the lambs to the dogs, as to think of destroying the birds or driving 
them from the premises. 

" Going a gunning," with the murderous intent to kill such birds, ought to 
consign a man to the infamy that we are apt to attach to a savage or a brute 
who wantonly kills the finest of God's creation. 

Without birds, a country is desolate ; with them, it is always cheerful. 
Their songs would enliven the heart of a stone, or make a miser for the 
moment forget his money. 

The association of children with birds, when taught to love them and not 
destroy their nests, has as direct and certain a tendency to improve their 
natures as the church or family fireside. Teach a child that birds are among 
the good gifts of God to man, and it is hardly possible that the child will 
grow up to manhood without being possessed of some of the attributes of the 
sweet songsters of the grove. 

And yet there are parents who allo'w their children to wage incessant war 
upon the birds, never thinking of the injury they are doing their young 
minds, or how many destructive enemies they are entailing upon the crops in 
the shape of countless caterpillars, grubs, and worms. 

We do not know of a higher Christian duty for a minister to engage in 
than an effort to preserve the birds in his parish. 

We would impress upon the mind of every child tliat the command, " thou 
shalt not kill," meant these dear little birds as well as things of a higher 
degree. Tliou shalt not wantonly kill a single thing of all creation that is 
not necessary for man's sustenance, or that is not detrimental to his interest. 

Children should be taught not only to love the music of birds, but to look 
upon them as models of beauty and affection to their mates and to their 
young. Instead of driving them away from the house, encourage them to 
come and perch upon the window-sill and build their nests under the eaves. 

Do not tell us tliey destroy the small fruit. Plant enough for birds and 
men. If they do eat fruit, tliey also eat worms, and you can well afford to 
give them a few cherries and currants for what they have done for .you. 


Around the city there is a diflBcnlty in preserving the birds, because all 
tlic groves arc infested with an abominable nuisance in the shape of big boys 
and prowling loafere " out for a day's shooting." 

Tliey ought to be out for a day's shooting, and that should be at their own 
idle carcasses, with tine salt and pepper-corns, and every owner of laud 
should be allowed by law thus to salt and pepper any of these idle vagabonds 
who come upon his grounds without leave to doom the birds to destruction. 

Farmers ! let your motto be — and impress it upon all your family — Never 
kill a bird ! 

In the early settlement of this country, there was such an abundance of 
birds that the people who were striving to raise grain enough for the support 
of their families, looked upon them as their enemies, because they were nat- 
urally disposed to come in for a share of the crop, and some of them, such 
as the crow and the large blackbird, sometimes depredated upon the seed, 
by which the crop was effectually cut off. 

So a war of extermination was declared without discrimination against all 
birds, and it was carried to such a bitter end that the children of the liret 
settlers grew up with a fixed opinion that they were doing a Christian duty 
whenever an opportunity offered, in destroying birds and birds' nests, and 
they entailed the same disposition \ipon their children and their children's 
children ; and so the poor birds have been almost exterminated from the face 
of the earth M'ith scarcely a thought why or wherefore, except that they were 
birds, and birds must be destroyed — " father says so." Upon that ipse dixit 
some of the best friends of the farmer, instead of his worst enemies, have 
been almost annihilated, while others have come to regard him as a being 
to be so avoided that they make their abodes in deep forests, and hide their j j 
nests and young from man as carefully as man would hide his young from I i 
a tiger. _ _ ! ! 

Experience teacheth wisdom ; and after two hundred years of teaching, I j 
the American farmer is just beginning to learn that birds are his best friends, j 
He shot them upon his plum and cherry trees because tlicy took a share of 
the fruit, and then came the insects that the birds used to prey upon, and the 
days of plum-growing were over. So of many other insects, real pests of the 
farmer, everywhere multiplying as the birds decrease. 

Not one at' the species upon which man has made such unceasing war, but 
has its use. Even the owl, although it will cat chickens, is a great mouse- 
destroyer ; and the hated hawk is sometimes shot with a snake in its bill. 
Crows should be treated with as much care about a farm as domestic fowls. 
Do they pull up your sprouting corn sesd ? Feed them and they will not. 
Sow corn broadcast through the field and they will not touch that which 
yon have planted. Birds of all descriptions should be taught that man is a 
friend and not an enemy, and tlay will return the friendship. 

Some lover of birds — and he who is not such is "fit for treasons, strata- 
gems, and spoils" — may demur to our assertion, that they arc less influenced 
by gratitude than their four-footed fellows. If our assertion is incorrect, »ve 

Seo. 11.] BIRDS. 179 

shall be happy to be set right, but we believe that facts are against tlie birds ; 
yet if this be so, the circunistanee is not to their discredit. Tliey are the 
humorists, the musicians, the conversationists of the animal world ; so fully 
occupied in talking, singing, joking, eating, and reai-ing their families, that 
they have little time to devote to those immense beings, pantalooned or 
hooped, whom they undoubtedly regard from their airy hights with a sort 
of contempt, as they behold them slowly plodding along, confined to the dull 
earth and unable to take a flight even equal to that of one of their newly- 
fledged oifspring ; and if they condescend to pick up a few crumbs scattered 
by some gentle hand, they feel as little of the emotion of gratitude to their 
benefactor, as the squirrel to the chestnut-tree which rains upon him his 
winter's supply. A certain degree of brain development is necessary for the 
existence of this emotion, and birds, in this respect, are inferior to most of 
the quadrupeds with which we are familiar. 

Birds do not seem to be as susceptible as quadrupeds to kind treatment, 
and those species which have been domesticated appear to have lost what- 
ever " smartness" they may originally have possessed. The whole tribe df 
domestic fowls — cocks, hens, ducks, geese, guinea-fowls, turkeys, pea-fowls — 
are unmitigatedly stupid — acute in nothing but picking up corn and devas- 
tating gardens. 

The crow is one of the birds that unthinking men destroy, because they 
pull up a little corn in the spring. Will you think what else he does ? 

He consumes in the year vast quantities of grubs, worms, and noxious 
vermin ; he is a valuable scavenger, and clears the land of offensive masses 
of deceased animal substances ; he hunts the grain fields, and pulls out and 
devours the underground caterpillars, whenever he perceives the signs of 
their operations, as evinced by the wilted stalks ; he destroys mice, young 
rats, lizards, and small snakes ; lastly, he is a volunteer sentinel about the 
farm, and drives tlie hawk from its inclosure, thus preventing greater mis- 
chief than that of which he himself is guilty. It is chiefly during seed-time 
and harvest that the depredations of the crow are committed ; during the 
remainder of the year we witness only his services, which are so appreciated 
by those who have written of birds, that I can not name an ornithologist 
who does not plead in his behalf. 

Frighten the crows, but do not kill them, except one to use to keep his 
fellows otf your corn. Pick oft' part of his feathers and scatter them on some 
spot in the field easily seen, and near by lay the carcass' of the dead crow 
and you will see his late companion sailing over the field and looking down 
upon what has been done, but very careful not to light where he too might 
fall a victim. If you can not kill a crow, you may make a veiy good show 
of a dead one with a black hen. Crows are too valuable as vermin-destroy- 
ers on a fiirm to be wantonly destroyed because they pull up a little corn. 

A writer at Eaton, N. Y., sends us the following item in favor of the per- 
secuted crow, which makes him out not quite so black as he looks — that is, 
when seen by the eyes of some of his enemies. He says : 


" For the interest of the fanning portion of this country, I eominunicato 
the following: Mr. Alpha Brown, an enterprising farmer of this town, 
informed me that, having acted this year upon the somewhat late suggestion 
of yours, of sowing corn broadcast over the planted ground, he experienced 
a new result. Upon four acres, where heretofore his crop had been greatly 
injured by the devastations of the "white grub" and "gray corn-worm," he 
sowed broadcast, after planting, a half bushel of corn. This, of course, 
attracted the crows, which, coming to the ground in the cooler part of the 
afternoon and morning, found the worms on their usual visit to the surface, 
and, preferring tlie latter to the corn, devoured tliem instead. The result is, 
that out of the whole field he has not lost to exceed five hills." 

230. The Reverse of the f row Question. — Having given our opinion in favor 
of the crow, in the preceding paragraph, we feel that it is due to a fair in- 
vestigation of the question not to make it an arbitrary opinion, and rest 
there, but to give the opinions of others also. It is facts, not theories, tliat 
we wish to give farmers. 

One who signs himself a " Farmer's Boy," writes from Ridgefield, Conn., 
about crows, as follows : 

" Having lately read your article upon the subject of crows and others 
of the feathered tribe, I can not hold still my rnsty old steel any longer. I 
agree with you very well until you advocate the protection of crows ; there I 
think you miss your mark. There is but one thing you name that is in their 
favor — the digging of grubs. Tlioy are the enemies of all our small birds, 
which you advocate preserving. They commence with the eggs, and con- 
tinue their depredations until the young are nearly grown. They arc never 
found destroying insects of any kind that could not be of more use than the 
crow, and even the grub can be made a source of income to the farmer. An 
intelligent farmer told me, some years ago, he made 1,000 pounds of pork by 
letting his hogs feed on them in his meadows, which damaged liis grass but 
little the first year, and thought it better the second by having the surface 
stirred. You speak of their devouring carrion. Now, in my opinion, no 
farmer that is a good economist will allow any dead animal to lie and rot in 
the sun to make food for the crows. I consider tlie carcass of a liorse, a cow, 
or an ox worth from tliree to five dollars to any farmer. If so, it is quite 
too dear food for crows. Some say crows catch grasshoppers and crickets. 
I prefer a nice brood of turkeys, that Avill not look bad on the table when 
they have performed their work on the farm. 

" You see I am a friend to almost everything but a crow. If there is any- 
thing made in vain, it is the crow. They destroy our little warblers; tliey 
catch our chickens, ducks, turkeys, and goslings; they dig our potatoes, pull 
our corn and beans, from the time they appear above ground until they grow 
out of their way. Then, as soon as the grain is formed on the ear; tiiey 
commence their work again. Now, if such a pest as this is to be protected, 
it must be by some one who has a heart softer than I have ; a creature that 
but one thing can be said in its favor, and the rest must go against it. 1 

Skc. 11.] BIRDS. 181 

have not tlie least doubt but our town was taxed $500 last year to feed 

Upon this we simply remark: If " Farmer's Boy" lias a breed of crows 
about him that really catch turkeys, goslings, etc., and dig potatoes, he is 
welcome to be their enemy. Our crows are of another sort. But is our 
"boy" sure that he "can tell a hawk from a hernshaw?" Because the 
raven, though one of the corvus family, is not a crow, as we understand the 
word ; and it is just possible that the bird that catches turkeys and other 
birds is a raven. 

We have another opinion, coming from a citizen of Montgomery County, 
Pcnn. He says : 

"Leaving your crows imder your protection, to enjoy their excellent repu- 
tations, we desire to say a word on tlie character of ours. Ti:at we have 
real, veritable crows that catch young chickens, is a ' fixed fact,' well estab- 
lished. Tii'e present season, notwithstanding our care, we lost by them, I 
suppose, from ten to fifteen, and avoided the loss of othei's only by the use 
of gunpowder. Our experience on this subject, I may add, is that of many 
others. This thing, then, our 'breed' of crows do, and also carry off spoiled 
eg^^ that may be thrown awaj', birds' eggs, etc. In reference to ducks and 
goslings, I am unable to speak, but have no reason to believe that they are 
distasteful, or that they do not catch th^n. 

" They love, it appears, a variety. A near and reliable neighbor informs 
mo that quite recently he saw one of our tribe in hot pursuit of a rabbit, 
whieli, after sundry dodgings, secreted itself under the fence. So you see 
New York crows differ from ours, and, I incline to think, from most other 

Here is another opinion. This comes from Theron Wales, AVindham, 
Portage County, Ohio. He says, in relation to our remarks upon the state- 
ment of " Farmer's Boy :" 

"I conclude you received it as doubtful. I can add testimony in part to 
the same effect. I have seen the crow alight into the nest of the robin and 
carry away the j'oung birds to feed their own young. They are pa5sionately 
fond of the eggs of other birds, and I have caught tliem in traps with egg- 
shells. Hunters of tlie wild tiirkey can testify to the hatred between tlie 
crow and the gobblers. From the frequent presence of the crow over the 
gobbling turkey, it appears they watch for their nests. At least every cry 
of the crow is answered defiantly by the turkey, and thus I have often been 
led to approach the turkey and shoot him. Wiiile we were living upon the 
Berkshire Hills, in Massachusetts, it was not unfrequent that our neighbors' 
and our own young lambs had their eyes picked out by the early returning 
crows in the spring. But I do not say these things for the sake of engaging 
in an exterminating war upon them. All things were created for some wise 
purpose. Every creature has in nature its enemy and destroyer, and every 
attempt on the part of man to give preponderance to one part of the wild 
creation over another, will fail. Civilization will of necessity drive away 



the beaver, otter, deer, and a host of forest birds, and their places will be 

rapidly supplied by the wren, the roliin, tlie bluebird, the honey-bee, etc. 

"The raven is more carnivorous tiian the crow. I once saw one alight 
into a kingbird's nest and carry away the young, in spite of the cries and 
efforts of tlie old ones.'' 

The crowning charge against the crows comes from Freeport, Me., in a 
letter written by E. Pratt, Jr., wlio says : 

"Now Avhat ^ your crows' are, or what tliey eat, or how tliey get their liv- 
ing, I know not ; but the crows in Maine both dig and cat potatoes, incredu- 
lous as it may apjjear. 

" In some seasons I have known many acres, j-ylanted on light soils, in 
exposed situations, devaslatcd by these miscreants, and that in my own 

"Tlieir manner is, when the plant first breaks ground, to dig and pull it 
up with the tubers attached, though it appears by the partially eaten ones 
left here and there on the field, that they do not eat them with much 

"I know that popular writers think the crow a great blessing to farmers, 
but I am yet to be convinced of this, and can only wish that those who think 
their company so desirable should have the benefit of my share." 

There is but little doubt in our mind tliat most of these bad birds were 
ravens, and not crows, particularly as Mr. Wales acknowledges the presence 
of the raven, and says that he is a carnivorous bird. 

Now, having said our say, and allowed others to say theirs, about crows, 
we will drop down to wrens, by way of contrast. 

231. Wrciis. — We waked one morning — one of those May mornings — 
when our domicile was a city one, with delightful sounds coming in at the 
window. They were the notes of sweet singing birds. What lovely music! 
It was the first of the season that had come to our ears, and it struck a chord 
that called to mind scenes of youth, long, long ago. We hastened to the 
Avindow and looked out. " Ila ! ha ! my old friends," we cried, " and so you 
have come back again." It was the wrens, the same ones undoubtedly that 
we built a nesting-place for last year. There was one pair then, now two 
pair — the progeny, wo suppose, of those that sung for us last year. "And 
80," we said, " you have both come for a nesting-place, have you ? AVell, 
there is the old one — -but you must have another. An increasing family 
needs more room. You shall have it." Notwithstanding the morning was 
a rainy one, we feared our pets might feel neglected, and so down we went 
to provide for their necessities. IIow amply were we repaid the little labor ! 
for all the time we were engaged, they were hopping about the peach limbs, 
picking off the insects, and singing all the while most merrily. Who would 
not cultivate such society as this? Who would not like to have their trees 
protected from insects that destroy foliage and fruit? Every one, surely. 
Then protect the wrens. Build nesting-i)laces for them, and they will come 
every spring and send their sweet notes into your open window, some pleas- 

Seo. 11.] BIRDS. 183 

ant May morning, to waken you to see the beauty of sunrise, or lull you 
into dreams of the old farm-house, orchards, and singing birds. 

A paper from Prof Nash says he has domesticated the common wren in 
this city, by building them a suitable house, very much to the amusement 
and pleasure of the family. One pair hatched and reared ten young ones in 
one season, and they acted as perfect scavengers of bugs and worms in the 
neighborhood. Mr. Nash says two hundred wren-housesnvere built last year 
about Union Square, which were not only occupied by wrens, but several 
other kinds of birds, and these served to keep the park and neighborhood 
almost free of insects. 

A writer in Uoveys Magazine recommended the use of wrens to drive 
other birds away from the cherry-trees. He says : 

" I have seen the experiment of placing a wren-box on a cherry-tree, tried 
in several instances witli apparent success. The best thing for this purpose 
is an olive jar. A hole should previously be drilled into the side of the jar, 
which should be fixed upon the tree, by thrusting the stump of an amputated 
branch, the more upright the better, into the mouth of the inverted jar, of 
just sufficient size to admit a wren, but too small to allow a bluebird to en- 
ter ; since, if it were otherwise, the latter would be sure to get possession of 
it. The wren being a very jealous and pugnacious bird, is diligent in driv- 
ing all birds from the tree in which his nest is built, and does not hesitate 
to attack birds as large as the robin. It is doubtful, however, whether the 
wren would persevere in his attacks, when the robins had become very numer- 
ous, but the expedient might be iised with some advantage in all cases." 

232. Protecting Trees from Birds. — Some persons advise throwing a net 
over the trees, during the few days while the fruit is becoming mature. This 
may be done in some cases, if there are but few trees to be protected, and 
the owner can afford to undertake a job that must be both troublesome and 
expensive. Such an expedient M'ould be hardly advisable except in extra- 
ordinary cases. Some fix a little windmill in the tree ; but as the wheel is 
constantly turning, the birds soon become accustomed to it, and- cease to 
regard it with suspicion. If anything of this kind is to be used, it should be 
kept motionless, until tlie birds fly into the tree, and then put suddenly into 
action by some person M-ho is watching it. Something like a watchman's 
rattle elevated on a pole, and fastened firmly to each of the trees, with a cord 
to be pulled when the machine is to be set in motion, might answer a good 
purpose. A boy might be hired in this case to watch the trees, and to pull 
upon the cords as the birds arrived. Cherries require so short a time to 
rijien, that no tree would need to be watclied more than one week. 

As birds always give the greatest oflfense, by their depredations upon fruit, 
to those who own but few trees, our argument is, that the best protection is 
to plant trees enough to serve you and the birds too, M'ith all that all of you 
can eat. You would then not only have the satisfaction of having what 
cherries you wanted, but tiie pleasure of seeing the birds. From experience 
every season, we are satisfied that the robins save us more cherries than 


they eat. Our trees were infested with the same kind of yellowish bugs that 
ate the roses, and are commonly called rose-bugs. We have seen half a 
dozen of them eating upon a single cherry, attacking them before they were 
ripe, and before the birds did. When at length the robins came iu goodly 
numbers, the bugs decreased, and if the robins ate cherries, they also ate 
bugs, and we believe more than they did cherries. At any rate we had 
more cherries than the birds and all the family could dispose of, and some 
for our friends. So we did not begrudge the dear little birds their share. 

As there are some who can not aftbrd to share their cherries with the 
birds, and others who are unwilling, we give a way of keeping them oflF, 
which we find in the Gardener's Chronicle, London. 

" The following is a plan I once saw succeed very well for some time, but 
the birds at last got familiar with it ; still I think it might answer for two 
months or so. An old gardener being greatly troubled with birds, applied 
to his master for nets to cover his fruit with ; but no, they would be too 
expensive. He therefore got a hawk stuffed in what he called a hovering 
position, put it on the end of a long wire, attached the wire to the top of a 
tree, and thus had the hawk suspended in the air as if it had been alive. lie 
had, however, another hawk which really was alive put into a cage, and had 
the cage put into the same tree where the dead hawk was. The gentleman 
in the cage was by no means mute, and I may add that I scarcely ever after- 
ward saw birds in that garden, except perhaps a few sparrows." 

Another plan that has succeeded very well at times is to suspend small 
looking-glasses, or bits of a broken mirror, to the limbs of the tree. "Where 
tlie sun shines, and the wind blows a little, this device answers a good pur- 
pose. It is of no use at other times, except that having previously frightened 
the birds, and pi-evented them from getting a haunt in the tree, they will not 
be so likely to come when the mirror is still. 

233. The Food of Birds.— A few facts to show what the food of birds really 
is, will do something, we hope, to dispel the prejudice which lias made man 
their bitter enemy. 

"Wilson, the great ornithologist, computes that a red-winged blackbird 
destroys, on an average, 50 grubs a day through the summer. Many other 
birds are equally useful to the farmer. No gold would buy the services per- 
formed by the birds. One often may be seen following the plowman hour 
after hour. 

Then look at the eternal labor of the birds in fall, winter, and spring, pick- 
ing up the seeds of weeds, and upon these they live until grain ripens, before 
it is possible for them to harm the farmer. 

"We therefore urge farmers to spare the birds. They pay more rent than 
the worth of all they eat. Robins have been thoroughly proved to be insect- 
eaters, and great destroyers of noxious pests to the farmers, by a committee 
of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society. 

This Society has done a deed worthy of commendation by all the lovers of 
birds. A resolution was moved to get the Society to ask the Legislature to 

Seo. 11.] BIRDS. 185 

repeal the law for protection of robins, iipo!i the ground that these birds 
were noxious to the tarnier ; it being contended that their food being veg- 
etable, they were great destroyers of valuable fruits. Upon this. Prof. 
Jenks (Prof, of Zoology) suggested that the Society should first learn the 
habits of the robin, and a committee, consisting of Prof Jenks, C. M. Ilovey, 
and E. S. Rand, Jr., were appointed, and have reported the following facts : 
" Plan Adopted for the Investiyation. — 1. To obtain birds at daybreak, mid- 
day, and sunset. 2. To obtain birds from both the village and the country. 
3. To preserve in alcohol the contents of each gizzard. 

Results in Procuring Specimens. — Beginning with the first week in March, 
ISoS, specimens have been examined at least weekly, and most of the time 
daily, to December, and during the winter months, at least semi-monthly to 
the date of the report, in the spring. 

Results of Investigation. — 1. Early in March, numbers of this bird made 
their appearance in this vicinity (Boston) ; but, until the second week in 
April, only the male birds. 

2. The gizzards of those killed in the morning were, as a riile, either 
entirely empty, or but partiall}"^ distended with food, well macerated ; while 
those killed in the latter part of the day were as nniformly filled with food 
freshly taken. 

3. From the almost daily examination of their gizzards from the early part 
of March to the first of May, not a particle of vegetable matter was found in 
the gizzard of a single bird. On the contrary, insects in great variety, both 
as to number and kind, as well as in every variety of condition as to growth 
and development, were the sole food. 

But nine tenths of the aggregate mass of food thus collected during this 
period consisted of one kind of larviB, which, through the aid of Baron Osten- 
s:icken, secretary of the Russian legation at Washington, I was enabled to 
identify as the Bihio albipcnnis {Say), and whose history an(T habits, by the 
aid of Dr. Asa Fitch, entomologist of the New York State Agricultural 
Society, I was enabled to make out quite satisfactorily. 

From one to two hundred of these larvte were frequently taken from a 
single gizzard, all in afresh, unmacerated condition; and usually, when these 
larvos were found, tliey were the only food in the stomach. 

To quote from a communication received from Dr. Fitch, he says : ' My 
attention was first directed to this fly some twelve years ago, when I was 
occupied in investigating the wheat midge. I observed it to be so very 
common in fields of growing wheat that I suspected it of living at the expense 
of that grain crop ; but on looking around I found it was equally as common 
everywhere else — resting upon the grass, leaves, and flowere in my yard and 
garden, as well as in meadows, pastures, and forests. ***** It 
comes abroad about the 20th of May, and continues about a fortnight. You 
will readily recognize it by its commonness, and its white transparent wings ; 
its body being black, clothed with soft, white hairs. It is very sluggish, 
moving around but little, and is easily picked up by the fingers. * * * 


Oil page 7Gt of tlie London Gard^ner^s Chronicle of the year 184i, is a val- 
uable article of liuricola, (J. O. Westwood), giving a full history of the 
Bihlo Marci, the European analogue of the one in riuestion. 'It appears 
these insects (unlike most others of the family Tipulidie to which they per- 
tain) arc niost pernicious, the larvaj feeding upon the roots of plants, some- 
times to such an extent as to cause them to wither and die. liuricola state? 
that the larv£e of the Merci, and other allied species of Bihio, are frequently 
sent to him by gai-deners, who find them to be mischievous in their straw- 
berry beds, vine borders, flower pots, and other situations M'here the soil 
remains undisturbed during the autumn and spring.' And another writer, 
Bouche, says ' that his bed of ranunculuses was completely demolished, ibr 
several successive years, by these worms eating the roots.' From these facts 
every one will perceive that the robin, consuming, as you found it to do, 
from one to two hundred of these Bibio larvse daily, during the months of 
March and April, has probably been ridding our gardens of these vermin 
every j'car hitherto ; thus rendering us an important service, of which wa 
have been wholly unaware. * " "* The larvae are gregarious ; living 
together in swarms, and perforating the ground so that it resembles a honey- 

' This is probably caused by the parent fly depositing her whole stock of 
eggs in one spot, she being too lazy and slothful to wander about and dis- 
tribute them in difl'erent places. Hence the robin, on finding one of these 
worms, knows that there is a host of others at the same place, and thus re- 
pairs to that spot, day after day, and gluts himself with them till the whole 
colony is exterminated.' 

To this extract I may be allowed to add, that my own observations, during 
the past year, confirm the conclusions of Dr. Fitch respecting this larva in 
every particular, having found its colonies in November, and observed the 
fly in early summer. I may also here introduce .an extract froin a comnni- 
nication of a lady friend, under date of Oct. 7, 1S58. She says : " On speak- 
ing of your remarks concerning the food of the i-obiu, at the Teachers' Asso- 
ciation at Bridgewater, in June last, to my father, he told mo of a little 
circumstance which I thought just proved your statement. It was formerly 
the custom to have a shooting match on election day in M.ay. On such an 
occasion in Korth Bridgewater, about the year 18'2(>, a great many birds 
were killed, so many that a man bought thorn by the cart-load for the i)ur- 
pose of enriching his land. In consequence, there was a great scarcity of 
birds in that vicinity, and a great amount of grass land seemed to be injured, 
but from what cause no one knew. The grass withered and turned dark- 
colored, as though it had been burnt, commencing in small tufts and spread- 
ing in large circles." It would seem that the insect under consideration 
would, growing undisturbed, produce precisely this result. 

4. During the month of May, the Bibio larvai entirely disappeared from 
the gizzards, but up to the 21st of June, was replaced by a variety of insects 
or worms only, including spiders, caterpillars, and beetles of the family 

I I 

Sko. 11.] BIRDS. 187 

Elateridse, the parents of the well-known wire-worms, so desLructive to corn 
and various other seeds when committed to the ground. 

The earth-worm I found to be a favorite food for tlie young bird, but 
sjjaringly e.nployed by the adult for its own use. 

5. From tlie date of June 21, I began to find strawberries, cheri-ics, and 
pulpy fruit generally, but in a majority of the examinations intermingled 
with insects, which led mo to conclude that they were not fond of an exclu- 
sively vegetable diet, but rather adopted it as a dessert, and from the ease 
of procuring it, particularly during the enervating season of molting. At 
this season of the year, I discovered a marked difference in the food of the 
bii-ds killed near or in the village, and those killed in the country at a dis- 
tance from gardens and fruit-trees, the latter having less stone fruit and more 
insects iu their gizzards, which led me to conclude that the robin is not an 
extensive forager. 

6. The mixed diet of the robin seems to continue from the ripening of the 
strawberries and cherries to October, the vegetable portion consisting, during 
August and September, in great part of elderberries (Samhucas canadensis) 
and pokeberries {Phytolacca decandra). 

7. During the month of October the vegetable diet is wliolly discarded, 
and its place supplied by grasshoppers and orthopterous insects generally. 

8. Early in November— the robin migrates southward — tlie few remaining 
eking out a miserable existence, during the winter months, on bayberries 
{Myrica cerifera), privet berries {Ligustrum viilgare), and juniper berries 
{.Ju7iij)erus comnuinis). " 

Here is something further upon the food of robins : In the report of the 
proceedings of the Boston Society of Natural History in September, 1858, 
we find an instructive paper from Prof. Treadwell, of Cambridge, giving a 
detailed account of the feeding and growth of two American robins {Tardus 
migt-atorius, Linn.), during a period of 32 days, commencing from the 5th of 

" When caught, the two were quite young, their tail feathers being less 
than an inch long, and the weight of each about 25 pennyweights — less than 
half the weight of the full-grown bird. Both were plump and vigorous, and 
had evidently been very recently turned out of the nest. He began feeding 
them with earth-worms, giving three to each bird that night ; the second 
day, he gave them ten worms each, which they ate ravenously ; thinking 
this beyond what their parents could naturally supply theiu with, he- limited 
them to this allowance. On the third day, he gave them eight worms each 
in the forenoon ; but in the afternoon, he found one becoming feeble, and it 
soon lost its strength, refused food, and died. On opening it, he found the 
crop, gizzard, and intestines entirely empty, and concluded, tlierefore, that it 
had died fi-om want of sufiicient food, the effect of hunger being perhaps 
increased by cold, as the thermometer was about 60°. The other bird, still 
vigorous, he put in a warmer place and increased its food, giving it the third 
day 15 worms, on the fourth day 24, on the fifth 25, on the sixth 30, and on 


the seventh 31 worms. They seemed insufficient, and the bird appeared to 
be lojiiig plumpness and weight, lie began then to weigh butli the bird 
and its food, and the results were given in a tabular form. On tlie fifteenth 
day, he tried a small quantity of raw meat, and finding it readily eaten, in- 
creased it gradually, to the exclusion of worms ; with it the bird ate a large 
quantity of earth and gravel, and drank freely after eating. By the table, 
it appears that though the food was increased to iO worms, weighing 20 dwt. 
1 the eleventh day the weight rather fell oft"; and it was ni>t until the 
fourteenth day, when he ate 68 worms, or 34 dwt., that he began to increase. 
On this day the weight of the bird was 21 dwt. ; he therefore ate 11 per cent, 
more than his own weiglit in twelve liours, weighing after it 29 dwt., or 1.5 
per cent, less than the food he had eaten in that time. The lengih of these 
worms, if laid end to end, Avonld be about fourteen feet, or ten times the 
length of the intestines. To meet the objection that the earth-worm contains 
but a small amount of nutritious matter, on tiie twenty-seventh day he was 
fed exclusively on clear beef, in quantity 23 dwt. ; at niglit, the bird weighed 
62 dwt. — but little more than twice the amount of flesh consumed during the 
day, not taking into account the water and earth swallowed." 

A man eating in the same proportion would consume 70 lbs. of flesh and 
five gallons of water. Four young robins would require, according to the 
consumption of this bird, 250 worms, or their equivalent in insects or other 
food, daily. After the thirty-second day the bird was fed for eighteen days 
on an average of 15 dwt. of meat, two or three earth-worms, and a small 
quantity of bread each day; the whole being equal to 18 dwt. of beef, or 
36 dwt. of earth-worms ; and it has continued to eat this amount to the 
present time. Tiie food was never passed undigested ; the excretions were 
made up of gravel and dirt, and a small quantity of white semi-solid urine. 

Every admirer of trees may derive from these facts a lesson, showing the 
immense power of birds to destroy the insects by wliich our trees, cs])ecially 
our apples, elms, and lindens, are every few years stripped of their foliage, 
and often many of them killed. The food of the robin, while with us, con- 
sists principally of earth-worms, various insects, their larvos and eggs, and 
a few cherries ; of worms and cherries they can procure but few, and those 
during but a short period, and they arc obliged therefore to subsist princi- 
pally upon the great destroyers of leaves, canker-worms, and some other 
kinds of caterpillars and bugs. If each robin, old and young, requires for 
its support an amount of these equal to the weight consumed by this bird, it 
is easy to see what a prodigious havoc a few hundreds of these must make 
upon the insects of an orchard or a park. Is it not, then, to our advantage, 
to purchase the service of the robins at the price of a few cherries ? 

Speaking upon this paper, the editor of the Newark (N. J.) Advertiser 
says : 

" There is so little knowledge of the habits of birds, and their ways and 
means of gaining a living in the world, that anything which promises to 
produce better acquaintance with them ought to bo generally made known. 

Skc. 11.] BIRDS. 189 

"It will be seen by this account, that quite a young robin died from 
starvation, because it was allowed but eight or ten earth-worms a day. The 
survivor was afterward treated more generously, and his fare was increased 
from day to day, till lie liad tor his dinner 68 worms, or 34 dwt., though tlie 
robin himself weighed only 24 dwt., thus consuming in twelve hours 41 per 
cent, more than his own weight. 

" After the bird was fully grown, he continued to cat one third of his own 
weight in clear flesh daily ! A man with such voracity (inferior, however, 
we have seen to that of the young bird while growing) would have some 
difficulty in finding board in any of our cities. But natui'e is not obliged to 
go to market to sustain her children with comfortable food. This same 
robin, if permitted to, be free to satiate his prodigious appetite, not chiefly 
on cherries or other fruits valued by man, but npon man's enemies, would 
range himself on the side of man, and slaughter the numberless insects of 
every variety wliich are destructive to his crops. Here we have reason to 
be grateful for the prodigious appetite of the robin, and thank him for his 
extraordinary gormandism. Tliis guest at tlie table of nature is addressed 
in very different language from guests generally. She says to him. Will you 
take something further ? pray don't spare, but help yourself to the spider, the 
canker-worm, the measurer, the caterpillar, grub, slug, and bug, and help 
yourself also to a score or two of curculio's eggs. Thus, ' more the merrier' 
is the sentiment of nature's feast. How the insect tribe, ixnd all the wicked 
fry who infest our fruits and cereal crops, fall before the all-devouring robin ! 
Even the ugly bug that is said to infest and feed upon the tubers and tops 
of the potatoes, producing thereby the blight or rot, might be exterminated, 
if the robin and other birds were Jiot destroyed or frightened away by boys, 
or men as stupid or mischievous as boys. 

" For what had been remarked of the voracity of the robin, is probably 
true with I'espect to other birds. Men have but recently come to the knowl- 
edge that they are tlie most effectual protectors they can have of their fruits 
and crops ; but nobody till now has been aware of the full extent of the 
obligation they are under to even a few birds in consequence of their being 
such enormous eaters. If their board costs them anything, they never could 
be able to stand it. But it does not — only now and then a life or two among 
them, taken by some rascal or vagabond, who should be their true benefac- 
tors, for they are busy in the service of man." 

This bird, the robin, is probably known to nearly every one wlio will 
read this volume ; but we will add the following short description : 

The robin measures nine inches and a half in length. His bill, which is 
about an inch long, is strong, yellow, and dusky near the tip ; the head, back 
of the neck, and tail are black ; tlie back and rumj>, ash color ; the throat 
and upper part of the breast arc black, the fortner streaked with white ; tlie 
wliole of the rest of the breast down as far as the tliiglis is of a dark orange ; 
belly and vent, white ; legs, dark brown ; claws, black and strong. 

It builds a large nest, often on an apple-tree, whicli it plasters on the 


inside wiih mud, and lines witii hay or fine grass. The eggs are from four 
to six, bluish green, unsijotted. They feed on worms, insects, fruit, and 
berries, c-pecially those of the sour gum-tree {N'l/ssa sylvatica). When 
fat, tlie robin is in considerable esteem for the table. 

Tiiesc birds are among our earliest songsters. Even in March, while the 
snow yet mantles the fields and woodlands, he will mount a post or leafless 
tree, and make an attempt at a song. 

They are ornamental to every farm, and should be encouraged to build 
their nests in every garden. 

234. Birds Destroying Grasshoppers and WormSi— Last year, in the neigh- 
borhood of Philadelphia, there was a swarming pest of grasshoppers. By- 
and-by, when every one was at his wits' end to know what to do to get rid 
of this scourge, there was a sudden appearance of immense flocks of plover, 
which spread themselves over the fields, and devoured with avidity the 
grasshoppers. Some of them have been shot to test the matter, and their 
crops have been found full of grasshoppers. Tlie ravages of the latter soon 
cease wherever the flocks of j^lover appear, as the great number and voracity 
of the birds render them more than a match for the insects. Up to this 
visit of plover, the only relief from this calamity was the eagerness with which 
the fowls devoured the grasshoppers. Turkeys, the most efficieut adversaries 
of tiicse insects — because the largest and most active— have thriven wonder- 
fully upon them. So have the ducks, geese, and chickens. If farmers pre- 
fer to be annually eaten up by insects, they will continne their insane war- 
fare upon birds. On the contrary, let them be protected, and encouraged to 
build their nests in the very windows of our dwellings, and see what myriads 
of pests they will destroy ! 

In one of the years that I lived on the Western prairies, there was an 
iri'uption of greedy devourers of farm crops, known as the army worm, 
coming from no one knows Avhere, nor wlien to look for its march. It is 
easy to trace it, however, after it has marched over a country, for it con- 
sumes every leaf of grass and grain, wherever the army spreads itself. 

Farmers sometimes plow a deep furrow around a field as the army 
approaches, and this furrow will soon fill up with worms, which are crushed 
by a log drawn over them ; repeating the operation every day. This is 
troublesome, and not always efieetive. In the year alluded to, the army 
approached just at the time it wonld be destructive to the wheat crop, and 
the owners of the most exposed farms were in sore trouble at the prospect 
before them. For two days tliey looked on in dread. " One more day," they 
said, " and we shall be swept." One more daycame, and with it one of man's 
best friends, 'the worm-eating birds. Looking out southward where the 
worms were at work on the prairie grass, a black cloud was seen hovering 
close to the ground. It was a cloud of blackbirds, coming np from their 
great nesting-place in the Kankakee marshes, to feed on the worms. They 
saved the wheat crop. It is true that tliis variety of birds, Avhen they come 
in great flocks into the grain-fields, arc pests, but not half as bad as worms 

Seo. 11.] BIRDS. 191 

and bugs would be if not destroyed. Besides, birds can be watched and 
driv'en away from fields, where no efforts of man wouhi serve to drive away 
an army of worms, marching to destroy, nor prevent liis farm from being 
devastated by such a fliglit of grasshoppers as swept every green thing from 
a portion of Minnesota a few years ago. Birds, then, in countless numbers, 
will be found to be man's best friends. 

235. T!i8 Sap-SuckerSi — The name of " sap-sucker" has been given to a 
very useful class of birds, under the erroneous impression that they sucked 
the sap from the fruit-trees, where they are often seen, hour after hour, 
clinging to tlie bole of an apple-tree, patiently drilling, drilling, drilling 
their little bills through the bark, leaving it, sometimes, as full of Iioles as a 
honey-comb. It is a slander upon these beautiful, busy little birds to snp- 
pose their object is to suck out the sap, and thus destroy the trees. To say 
that the " sap-sucker" girdles apple-trees and destroys them, or taps the 
Austrian and Scotch pines so as to cause them to bleed to death, we must 
have stronger proof than slipshod statements. 

In argument against the birds, it has been stated that they have been shot 
wliile in the very act of 

" Tapping the hollow beech-tree," 

and their craws examined without finding a worm, and notliing but pieces 
of bark, thus proving their object to be eating the bark, if not sucking the 
sap, and that they were therefore very injurious to trees. These microscopic 
examinations only prove what we have long believed, that tlie bird can not 
always tell where the worm is that he wants, and so. has to bore until he 
finds him. It is not likely that he goes far amiss, and probably hits him 
oftener with the first hole than he fails. It is thought by many jJersons that 
that troublesome litile destroyer of fruit, the curculio, deposits its eggs in 
the bark of trees, and that that is what the sap-sucker is after. It is certain 
tiiat when sap-suckers abounded in our orchards, there was no complaint of 
curculio. In our opinion, a perfectly healthy tree, free from insects, is never 
attacked by any of the nut-hatch family — vulgarly called " sap-suckers." 
We believe that, on the contrary, they ai"e of essential service to man ; and 
that it was one of the admirable provisions of nature, where, everything 
works on an even balance, until one scale is ovei-loaded by man, that the 
nut-hatch should stand sentinel over the fruit-trees, and keep the pestiferous 
insects from getting the balance of power. 

236. Do Birds Eat Bees ? — It has long been a mooted question whether the 
birds known as "kingbirds" (the Musciccipa tyranmis) destroy bees? 
Tins bird has obtained his name from a spirit of boldness in attacking and 
driving away birds of mucli larger size and power, enough to kill him at a 
single stroke. He has obtained the name of a destroyer of honey-bees, and 
war to the death has been declared against him, on the evidence of his bad 
name, and, as we think, without anything like a fair trial. 

A few years ago we elicited a great deal of testimony upon this question. 
One witness, Mr. IS^athaniel M. Tobey, of Tompkins County, says he is an 


old farmer, has kept bees ten years, and always encouraged birds to make 
their homes upon iiis premises. One season, observing two kingbirds about 
his hives, he was curious to know what they wei-e after, a!id ascertained to 
liis satisfaction tliat tliey caught bees on their return to the hive, not to cat 
them bodily, but to disembowel them and despoil them of the " honey-sack." 

He attributed the non-swarming of the bees to this pair of kingbirds, but 
says his bees have never been molested since. 

That the kingljirds caught Mr. Tobey's bees wc have no doubt, since he 
says he saw the disemboweled carcasses under the trees where they alighted, 
but that one single one of them was a worker we do doubt, and that a single 
pair of kingbirds were the cause of the non-swarming of several hives of 
bees, we have no doubt upon the subject — we know it was not the case — it 
would be a preposterous absurdity to believe such a wild tale. We do not 
believe that all the kingbirds in the world ever destroyed a hive of working- 
bees, and a man who will kill the innocent birds witliout better proof of 
their guilt, than all that we have heard, is at heart a — bird murderer. 

Other persons declared that they had often seen kingbirds catch bees, on 
the wing, near the hive. This we do not doubt, because others have seen 
the same thing, and have killed and dissected them and found bees in their 
craws. But in every case where they were examined by persons competent 
lo decide, tliey have declared that none but drones were ever found. Upon 
lliis point the instinct or observation of the bird is perfect; and this ma}' 
iiave been one of nature's provisions, that these birds should bo assistants 
of the workers, and not their destroyers. Certainly, until we have some 
better evidence against the birds, we shall advocate their protection. Surely, 
if they eat bees, they also cat other flies, and if permitted to live and multi- 
ply around our dwellings, might keep us free of a great many pestiferous 
insects. If a bird can eat a stinging-bee with impunity, it can also eat a 
wasp or hornet, and so destroy that family. 

237. Swallows, Swifls, aud Martins.— In our boyhood, swallows were looked 
upon as pests of the farm, or rather the barn, and war was often waged upon 
them by the boys, with tlie countenance of those who should have been well 
enough informed to teach them better. We hope the day is past when any 
one would wantonly destroy these beautiful birds. 

Ilirundo is the gcnoric term applied to the class of birds comprised in the 
several species of barn swallows, bank swallows, chimney swallows, and a 
large, strong sort known as swifts, and the common martin, for which many 
New England people are careful to provide boxes, whicli are often attached 
to the dwellings. Their first appearance in spring is hailed with delight, 
and the time of their coming f)ften noted, so as to compare one year with 
another. Although " one swallow does not make it spring," people have 
learned to think that many never come until spring is fairly opened. 

The Ilirinido family are all birds of passage. They go far south to win- 
ter, and return with great regularity to their old haunts, to build their nests, 
rear their young, and catch flies, till autumn approaches, and then they are 

Sec. 11.] BIRDS. 193 

off. They cross the parallel of 40°, on their northern journey, about the 
first of May. 

The barn is often tenaiitless at night, and alive with the twitter of swal- 
lows the next morning. To talk about their hybernating in the mud, or in 
hollow trees, is simply ridiculous. You might just as well expect wild geese 
to go down into the mud to winter, as for the swallows to do so. 

Tiie following description of some of the rare varieties of the Hirundo we 
found in the Country Gentleman newspaper, and thought it interesting: 

"The Cliff, or Republican Swallow, Hirundo lunifrous, or Il.fulva, is a 
well-known swallow among farmers. Its crown and back are of steel blue, 
belly Avhite, length five inches, plus, and the stretch of the wings twelve 
inches, plus. They formerly occupied the cliffs of the Eocky Mountains and 
the fur countries. One of the first records of their appearance in the States 
was at Henderson, and Newport, Ky., on the banks of the Ohio, in 1815. 
In 1817 they were observed at "Whitehall, N. Y., near Lake Champlain. 
These birds are of social habits, building their nests in clusters, or near each 
other. Vieillot observed one at sea, off Nova Scotia, long before this. They 
have long been known in that province. In 1818, it is stated that they began 
to build at Crawford's, near the base of the White Mountains. General 
Dearborn saw their nest at Winthrop, Me., in 1830; also in Gardiner. 
The writer first saw them in Worcester County, Mass., about 1838. Their 
nests arc arranged frequently along under the eaves of a barn, in the form 
of a projecting retort, constructed of pellets of earth, with an internal lining 
of dried grass, in which are laid four eggs. Their note is not a twitter, but, 
according to Audubon, resembles in sound the rubbing of a moistened cork 
in the neck of a glass bottle. AVithin a quarter of a century they have be- 
come the favorites of many New England farmers. 

" The Violet-green Swallow, Hirundo thalassina, tail acutely emarginafe; 
back a soft, velvety green, shaded with purplish violet; length five inches, 
and the stretch of the wings twelve inches; is common in the Rocky Mount- 
ain region. They are the associates of the cliff swallow, just described, 
their note being more like that of the barn swallow. Their nests resemble 
those of the cliff swallow, wanting, however, the pendulous neck. They 
sometimes occupy the deserted nests of their associate species. They are not 
common east of the Mississippi River. 

" The White-bellied Swallow, Hirundo hicolor, is of a glossy, metallic green 
above, and white below ; hence its common name. Its length is six inches, 
and the stretch of the wings is twelve and a half inches. It is not as com- 
mon as the barn swallow, and is allied somewhat fo the purple martin. 
Their note is a shrill, lively, warbling twitter. They are usually the first 
swallows that appear in the spring. They breed in some deserted house or 
hollow tree. They use no mud in building their nests, which are lined with 

"The Rough-winged Swallow, Hirundo serripcjinis of Audubon, and Cotyle 
serripennis of Bonaparte ; color above a light, sooty brown, and beneath 


a wliitisli gray ; Icngtli live and a half inclies, and the stretch of tlie wings 
twels-e iuclies. 

"The Chimney Swift or Swallow, nirundo pelasgia of Linnreus, and Chw- 
turapdiwjia of Stephens; color a sooty brown; length five inches; the stretch 
of wino-s twelve inches ; the tail is short and niueronatc. They build their 
nests freqnently in chimneys, sometimes in hollow trees. They are small and 
shallow, and are attached to the side of the chimney or tree by an adhesive 
gum or mucilage secreted in the stomach of the architect. They feed their 
young tin-ough the greater part of the night, as the writer has frequently ob- 
served. The noise they make in passing down and up the chinniey resembles 
distant thunder. 

" Vaux's Chimney Swift, or the Oregon Swift, resembles the one described 
above; length three and a half to four and a half inches; stretch of the 
wings ten inches, plus. This species is not rare on the Western coast. 

"The swallow tribe arc remarkable for their social habits, living generally 
in colonies, constructing their nests together ; and when the season for mi- 
gration arrives, they leave in large flocks. They usually rear two broods or 
more per pair during the sunmier. They frequent watery places or swampy 
lands, ponds, etc., in pursuit of winged insects, which they take on the wing. 
In fair weather they usually fly high in the air. As the air becomes less 
dense, the insects fly nearer the earth, and the swallows skim near the sur- 
face of the earth or water, which prognosticates rain at hand. The number 
of flies, gnats, etc., annually consumed by swallows exceeds all calculation. 
Hence the truth of the observation of a farmer, mIioso barn-eaves had be- 
neath them one connected line of cliff swallows' nests: 'I am very glad to 
have these birds here, for my cows and milkers are much less troubled with 
gnats and flies than before these swallows came in such numbers.' 

"Some farmers try, unwisely, to exclude swallows from their promi.-;cs, 
because, say they, ' these birds make dirty work.' Granted, but it is far less 
troublesome and annoying than the insects of the kinds named, which greatly 
multiply in the absence of the swallows, swifts, and martins." 

Barn swallows and martins arc too widely known to make a description 
of them interesting in this })lace. Children, however, should always have 
an opportunity of seeing their portraits and reading their history in Audu- 
bon or Wilson, as well as that of every other bird, and, by learning ihcir 
habits, judge M'hich is and which is not beneficial to the farmer. Swallows 
and martins would certainly not then be doomed to destruction. D. W. War- 
ner, of Sharon Springs, N. Y., says : 

"My father repeatedly attempted wheat-growing, but as often failed, the 
weevil taking the whole crop, until a large colony of martins cstahlisiicd 
themselves under the eaves of the barn, since which time he has raised good 
crops of spring wheat. The wheat has been grown within one hundred rods 
of the barn. Quci-y — Had the martins anything to do in preventing the 
appearance of the weevil ?" 

238. Skylarks and Imported BirdSi — Several attempts have been made to 

Sec. 11.] BIRDS. 195 

introduce skylarks into this country. In February, 1853, Jolin Gorgas, of 
Wilmington, Del., received a lot of twenty, wliicli were kept confined until 
the 19th of March, when they were set at liberty. Another lot of twenty- 
two arrived April 18th, and were set at liberty the next day. This was 
oidy twenty-two days from the time they were trapped in England. These 
birds propagated in the neighborhood that season, and strong hopes were 
entertained that the English skylark had been introduced permanently 
into this country ; but these hopes have not been realized. A letter 
from Mr. Gorgas, in the summer of 1860, indicates that the birds liave all 
disappeared. •» 

Tliere was also another lot of skylarks imported, and liberated in Green- 
wood Cemetery, on Long Island, in the spring of 1853, and still another lot 
were set free in "Washington city, at a later period ; but, so far as we can 
learn, all of these birds have disappeared. This is greatly to be regretted ; 
for besides the interest of their curious flight and song, they are great insect 
dostroyers. Their home is in the grass and grain fields, and their food in 
summer is entirely composed of insects and worms that are pests to the 
farmer. In Europe they inhabit a wide range of latitude, feeding in winter 
upon seeds of grass and weeds, and, if located too far north, making a short 
migration to a milder clime. It can not be owing to the cold that they do 
not succeed here ; but it is not improbable that the cold has prompted them 
to move southward, and they have not felt disposed to return. "We still hope 
the skylark will have its home with us, as common as in England, where it 
is so noted as a song-bird. Its flight skyward is also very curious. It as- 
cends perpendicular!}^, as though it screwed itself through the air, until 
quite out of sight, and after a little descends in the same way. The skylark 
in Europe is a fine table luxury, notwithstanding they afiord but half an 
ounce each of meat to the epicure. Vast numbers of just as diminutive 
birds are sacrificed upon the epicurean tables of all our large cities in the 
United States. 

To those who may take an interest in the importation of birds, the follow- 
ing account will be useful, as given by Mr. "W. Brodie, of his successful 
transportation of English pheasants, gold pheasants, and partridges from 
England to New Zealand. He says : 

" I left the St. Katherine's Dock with thii'ty-six pheasants and partridges 
on board, and after a long and most disagreeable voyage of 2G1 daj's, landed 
in Auckland, Kew Zealand, with the same number as I had left England 
with. It is a pastime to cabin passengers going a long voyage to have some 
occupation to break the monotony of shipboard imprisonment. I therelbie 
looked after my own birds, cleaned them out every morning, gave them 
fresh red gravel (coarse) every other day, supplied them bountifully with 
fresh water (not M-ater caught on deck aflcr a heavy rain, as there is a cer- 
tain quantity of tar in it), never allowed thetn a fresh-water bath, fed them 
with buckwheat, wheat, canary-seed, and hemp-seed alternately, week and 
week about, kept them in wicker cages made on purpose, three feet long, 


two feet wide, and one foot liigli, and padded the top inside the lids of the 
cages, to protect theirlieads. 

"These birds were kept on deck the whole of the voyage, with a painted 
canvas cover to protect them from the salt water in bad weather. Hence 
my success. The increase of my birds has amounted to tens of thousands. 
In the northern part of New Zealand they breed twice a year, and they have 
stocked the province of Auckland, 200 miles distant from the point where 
they were first sent adrift, M'hich was upon one of my estates, near the North 
Cape o^New Zealand. In the early part of 1S59 I sent out 400 house and 
liedge sjjarrows and yellow-hammers to Auckland ; and I hope in September 
to send out 400 singing birds to the same port gratuitously. Birds should 
not be sent out between March and September; those sent in April or ^lay 
are sure to pine away and die, it being their pairing season." 

By pursuing the course adopted by Mr. Brodie, we might have some of 
the most rare birds of California brought to the Atlantic States, with un- 
doubted profit to the importer. 

239. Laws for the Protectiou of Birds. — Tlie State of New York has had 
what is called a "game law" for a good many years; but it was a law for 
the protection of a class of men and boys who, without any claim to the 
title, called themselves "sportsmen" — such sportsmen as would shoot a 
robin-red-breast on her nest, or an imported skylark in the midst of his song. 
The law was only incidentally beneficial to farmers, so tar as it protecte*! 
game birds, the most of which are great insect-eaters. There is not a farmer 
in all the old States that can afford to have a quail killed upon his farm, if 
he was paid a dollar a head. This species of wild bird would be semi 
domesticated, if man would allow it to be so. We have seen them so gentle 
that they often came around the barn for food in winter, and only walked 
slowly away at the approach of man. At such a time we would not kill one 
for ten times its value as food. All the past summer we had the delight of 
knowing that a pair of these beautiful birds were safely rearing their young 
only a few rods from our home. Often, as we walked about the little farm, 
they were seen dodging along some jiath, or between the corn-rows, or into 
the shelter of the grass or shrubbery. Then, with what sweet satisfaction 
we listened to " Bob White," sitting upon the wall, telling us almost uner- 
ringly of the approach of " more wet !"' 

An Illinois farmer declares that a flock of quails made him a crop of corn, 
having voluntarily taken upon themselves to rid the field of cut-worms. " I 
never," says he, " can again consent to the destruction of these valuable 
birds. I used to shoot and trap them, but I was ignorant of their value on 
the farm. 

A neighbor of ours, a true sportsman, said to us, the other day: "I have 
done shooting quails. I used to think it real sport to wing these beautiful 
birds; and tlie temptation to do so was enhanced l)y the delicious food tliey 
aft'ord. I really think that I never shall shoot another quail iu my life." 

Li answer to our " Why ?" he said : 

Sec. 11.] BIKDS. 197 

"I had never studied their liistorj, and the nature of their habits, and 
character of their food, until this season. I was incited to do this from 
meeting with a pair of the birds ev^ery time I walked over a certain jjortion 
of the farm. They were ahnost as gentle as the fowls in the door-yard, and 
frequently I noticed them so busily engaged picking up worms in the corn- 
field, that it led me into a train of thought and study that has taught me 
not to kill quails. A few days ago I saw my pets — for such I had come to 
regard them — with sixteen young ones, each nearly as large as its parent. 
If I could guard that flock from the depredation of idle boys, no money 
would buy them. Why, what useful as well as interesting birds they are ! 
TVe want stringent laws, well enforced, to protect quails." 

Yes, but, most of all, we want information for farmers of their value. 

The following are the penalties of the New York Game Law, passed April 
14, 1860: 

It is $25 fine to kill a deer in the first seven months of the year. 

It is $2 fine to kill a v\-oodcock between January 1 and July -1 ; or a par- 
tridge (ruffled grouse) between January 15 and September 1 ; or a quail be- 
tween January 1 and October 15; or any wild duck between February 1 
and August 1. 

It is $10 fine to kill a prairie fowl, or pinnated grouse, at any time within 
five years. 

It is $10 fine to trap or snare quail or grouse. 

It is 50 cents fine to kill, trap, or snare a nightingale, night-hawk, blue- 
bird, yellow-bird, oriole, finch, thrush, lark, sparrow, wren, martin, swallow, 
woodpecker, or any other harmless bird, at any time ; and bobolinks and 
robins only between February 1 and October 1. 

It is $5 fine to catch brook or lake trout, or muscalonge, between Septem- 
ber 1 and March 1 ; and it is $2 fine to catch them in any way but by a hook 
and line. 

It is $5 fine for any pei-son to enter the premises of another with fire-arms, 
or other hunting or fishing implements, with the intent of using tliem ; and 
if he entei-3 upon a cultivated field, orchard, or garden, or where crops are 
growing, in jjursiil, of game, without the consent of the owner, he is finable 
$10 for each oflTense. 

Such is the law now in force in this State. Let all who are interested see 
that it is made effectual. Tlie difficulty in the way of its enforcement is a 
very lax state of morals among the people, many of whom consider birds 
free plunder; and they have so long enjoyed the privilege of rambling over 
everybody's land, as freely as though they owned it, that it is hard to con- 
vince them that they do not. The contrary can never be taught in courts, 
nor by fines and prisons ; it must be taught in our common schools and 
around the farmer's fireside. 

Xew Jersey has a good law upon her statute book for the protection of 
small birds. It is diSicult of enforcement, because the mass of people have 
been educated to look upon all birds as noxious, or elae worthy of destruc- 



[Chap. IL 

tion for food, and of no otiier value. They do not even look upon poultry 
in any other light. Yet the truth is, poultry is worth ten times as much to 
tlie fanner for the work of destruction it docs upon his pests, as it is for the 
food it affords him. It is just so with game birds ; and if the owners of land 
well situated for game preserves were able t(5" preserve the birds, the culti- 
vated portions might be benefited, and the owners could make the keeping 
of wild birds as profitable as tame ones. 

From time to time laws have been devised and statutes enacted for the 
preservation of game; but until recently such legislation has been originated 
by the wealthy men of cities, the men of the educated and leisure classes of llie 
community, the consumers and killers, not the feeders and jjossessoi^, of the 
game or the owners of the acres. This has generally given to these statutes 
tiie appearance, though in no degree the reality, of partaking of the odious 
character of class legislation ; of being enacted for the benefit of the rich 
against the poor, the proud against the humble, the men of leisure against 
the men of labor. The formers, who knew little and cared less for the game 
which ran wild in their woods, fluttered in their tangled swamps, or screamed 
over their boggy morasses, did not conceive how it could have any real value 
in the eyes of any rational being ; regarded all legislation forbidding its 
slaughter, except at stated periods, as a device cunningly framed for depriv- 
ing them of their own natural and indefeasible rights, and for giving amuse- 
ment and gratification to finely-dressed, flashy strangers from the towns, 
wiio came periodically into country places to break down fences, trample 
under foot growing crops, and kill the game reared on the farmer's land, 
which was, in its very nature, and from tiie mode of killing it, useless to the 
farmer himself. In a word, they looked upon the Game Laws as an oftensive, 
aristocratic, unrepublican, European invention ; a sort of scheme for making 
the rich richer, and the poor poorer — an idea sedulously encouraged by all 
the brawling foreigners and pot-house village loafers, who, too lazy to work, 
found their own profit in poaching a few starveling parent birds on the 
ncsis, or half-grown fledgeling young fry on otlier men's lands, which they 
might traflic or truck away to railway conductors and stage-coach drivers, 
for transmission to the eating-houses of the cities. 

Gradually, however, they — the farmers, mo mean — have come to open 
tlieir eyes on this cpiestion. The fearful increase of insect life, the prodigious 
deterioration of the crops of all kinds, the threatened utter extinction of 
some of the most valuable American staples in the very localities of which 
they were formerly the pride and boast — as, for instance, the wheat crop of 
the famous Genesee Valley, where it is already questionable, from the yearly 
aggravated ravages of the Hessian-fly and the weevil, whether it is any 
longer profitable, or perhaps prudent, to sow wheat — have forced them to 
perceive that this growth and superabundance, daily and hourly aggravated 
and exaggerated, of insect pests is to be attributed wholly to the unprece- 
dented destruction of small birds. At the samo time, the vast and honrly- 
incicasing demand /or game in the large cities, the immense freights and 

Sko. 11.] BIEDS. . 199 

cargoes of wild animals sent down yearly, so soon as cold weather allows its 
safe transportation by express companies and railroad cars — immense, yet 
still inadequate to meet the call of the markets, although the illimitable 
West is fast suffering depletion, and is in some States legislating against ex- 
portation — have quickened the perception of agriculturists to the fact, that 
if game be worth as much money in the market as poultry, or more, and can 
be raised at no cost and less than no trouble, it is better to have the woods, 
which they necessarily keep up as timber lots, the hill-sides, which are too 
craggy and sterile of soil to rear anything but brambles and ferns, and the 
morasses, which it would be too costly to drain, swarming with profitable 
Avild animals, than waste and unprofitable ; and to the other fact, that if 
money is to be made by killing game on their lands, it is as well at least, if 
not better, to make it themselves, and to go on making it, year after year, 
by maintaining a sufiicient breeding stock, as to suffer it to be made out of 
their pockets by every landless, shiftless vagabond who chooses to stampede 
every head of game out of every farm, and who lias no earthly reason or 
inducements why he should not kill as speedily as possible the goose which 
lays the golden eggs — seeing that the goose, if slain by himself, is clearly 
his, while the eggs, infuturo, may fall to the lot of any other Tom, Dick, or 
Harry of his own reputable or disreputable order. 

The farmers and land-owners being thus convinced of the loss directly 
attributable to the killing of small birds at all, at any season, and of the great 
gain certainly attainable by the protection of the game during the breeding 
seasons, have of late, in many States and counties of States, procured statutes 
to be passed for the preservation, absolutely and at all times, of certain 
innoxious and useful small birds. But all these statutes have defects, besides 
the one alluded to — the lack of proper instruction to the children. 

It is a defect in our State law that no penalty is provided sufiicient to 
prevent hunting all the public highways, or other public grounds, and the 
penalty for entering your premises is quite inadequate to their protection, 
because you can not afford to procure testimony, and hire attorneys to pros- 
eculu a fellow who will verify the adage of " sue a beggar and catch a louse." 

The statutes in question are not asked or enacted for the defense of private 
rights of private individuals, though they may defend them incidentally, 
but for that of the community at large, to M'hich the safety of crops and the 
greatest possible supply of food of all kinds in the market, at the lowest i^os- 
sible rates, are incontestably benefits. Therefore the community has not 
only a right, but it is its especial duty to enforce the same protection and 
preservation of the same animals on its own possessions — that is to say, on 
the highways, wastes, commons, and all other unoccupied lands or waters of 
which the public are the guardians and occupants — -as it commands on the 
private lands of individuals from trespassers. 

So convinced are the scientific agriculturists of Franco of the importance 
of raising all those species of wild animals which are natural, indigenous, 
or capable of being acclimated and naturalized to the waste lands, of which 


tliere are many hundreds of thousands of acres, utterly unsuited to any other 
sort of culture or stocking, that there is an important department in the 
National Agricultural Society of that great and enlightened nation, tl>e sole 
duty of wliich ii to superintend the reproduction ou the waste lands and 
waters of France of the native 6j)ecies of game which have gradually become 
extinct ; to promote the introthiction ou the same lands of such foreign wild 
animals, valuable for food, as may appear to be suited, by their habits and 
the character of the climates to which they originally belonged, for naturaliza- 
tion in France ; and, lastly, to encourage and enforce, by means of premiums 
for success and stringent protective legislation, the maintenance of such 
stocks of game, both quadruped and winged, as shall realize to the propri- 
etors and to the state an abundant return of nutriti'Mis and cheap food from 
lands until lable, uniitted for pasturage, and in fact worthless for any purpose 
but that of raising game. 

At the same time we, in America, are suffering our infinitely larger 
number of unreclaimed — if not irreclaimable — acres, which formerly swarmed 
with animal life, and aiforded supplies, a few years ago supposed to be 
inexhaustible, of the choicest varieties of game, to be stripped of the last fin, 
the last hoof or pad, the last feather of the wild tribes, unequaled elsewhere, 
both in quality and quantity', which at the time of its discovery rendered 
America the paradise of Nimrods ; so that the woods, the fens, the waters 
are indeed fast becoming utterly barren, useless, and unprofitable wastes. 

It is certain that the fact of any farm being well stocked with game is not, 
in any possilile point of view, a disadvantage, even if their value, whether 
as an article of food or as an object of pleasurable and healthful pursuit be 
entirely set aside, since the actual profit consequent on their subsistence is 
greater than the loss from the grain which a few of the varieties consume. 
Besides the insects, many of the game birds are great consumers of weed 
seeds. The prairie-liens, where they exist in large numbers, do depredate 
upon corn-fields and stacks of grain ; but even there, it is not a very severe tax 
to feed them ; and we think that farmers could make the preservation of 
birds profitable. 

It may be assumed, as a reasonable average, that every fiirmer who owns 
and cultivates a hundred acres of arable land, with from fifty to a hundred 
of meadow land and pasture, and an equal quantity of woodland, if he 
choose to protect and preserve them, especially if he takes the trouble to 
erect a few little shelter huts of brushwood and fern in his woodskirts, and 
to bait them in hard weather with a few bushels of buckwlieat, in a good 
game district where the winters are not too severe, may winter from ten to 
twenty brace of quail, which may he expected to raise from fifteen to thirty 
bevies of birds. Each bevy will probably average fifteen birds, which gives 
a yield of from seventy-five to one hundred brace of quail, to be killed and 
sent to market in the late autumn or early winter, with the butter, buck- 
wheat, fat turke_vs, and other produce of tlic farm. Tiiese birds will average 
twenty five cents a brace iu ordinary seasons, and when game is scarce or 

Seo. 11.] BIRDS. 201 

for any reason there is an unusual demand, an increased price. To this may 
be added, if it be a ruffed grouse country, two or three broods of these 
hardy, bokl, and delicate birds, which rarely jM-oduce fewer than twelve and 
thence upward to sixteen poults, so that the landholder may reckon on his 
iifteen to twenty brace of ruffed grouse at seventy-five cents a brace, and on 
his thirty or forty rabbits, at a dime a head. Here is a profit of perhaps 
fifty dollars per annum, arising from no expenditure, from no investment of 
capital, and involving as a consequence, several days or hours of pleasant 
exercise and amusement in lieu of labor, for the purpose of rendering it 
marketable. On snipe grounds and countries adapted to woodcock, the 
profits are yet more enormous. 

The number of woodcock to be killed annually on any given piece of 
ground is never so great as that of snipe, since the birds killed in the early 
part of the season consist of those bred on the ground itself on which they 
are shot, which is of course a limited number, although tiie autumnal flights, 
which come in successively, are those bred in the uncultivated wastes far to 
the northward. Yet even of these, there are numerous localities, especially 
in parts of the States of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, 
Michigan, and other Western States, which might be counted on as sure to 
furnish ten woodcock to the acre in each season, at twenty-five cents the bird. 
■ It can hardly be doubted that by the system of game protecting, without 
expending a dollar, every owner farming from 100 to 200 acres of land in a 
country well adapted for game — and there is but little country in any of the 
Northern, Western, or Middle States which is not adapted to it — can add 
from $50 to $200, and in some instances a much larger sum to his annual 
income. If he have trout-streams, and the facility of making a chain of 
small trout-ponds, as may be easily done in every deep glen watered by a 
rapid brook, instead of suflering them to be weired and netted by all the 
vagabonds of the country side, he might make thousands more easily than 
by his poulti-y-yard or sheep-fold, and at far less cost. 

With these facts before them, it is for the farmers "themselves to consider 
whether game-laws are the obnoxious things that demagogues have taught 
them to believe. Is it not rather worth their while to insist upon the 
enactment, and strict observance of such laws as will protect their own 
interests, and afford them such additions to their income as we have briefly 
hinted at. 

240. Scndiuj Wild Pigeons to Market.— The Eagle^ newspaper, printed at 
Grand Rapids, Michigan, published an article in the spring of 1860, about 
the pigeon trade. There had been at that time shipped from that village 
588 barrels of wild pigeons — equal to 108,555 lbs. The express freight on 
this quantity at three cents a pound, would be $3,256 65. If sold at twenty 
cents a pound, they would bring $21,711. It was estimated that the west 
part of Jlichigan had sent two millions of wild pigeons to market in one 
season. This great number can easily be understood by those who are 
acquainted with the manner in which these birds flock together. To one 


who has never seen a pigeon-roost or a nesting-place, the truth will seem 
almost as fabulous as the tales of Sinbad the sailor. Yet it is far within the 
bounds of truth to saj that we have seen many millions of wild piijeons at 
once, or at least as soon as we could direct our eyes upon them. We iiave 
seen them on their evening flight toward tlie roosting-place, in one unbroken 
flock, two miles wide, and two hours' continuance. We have ridden two 
hours in a straight line through a pigeon-roost at least seven miles wide. 
We have seen upon a single beech-tree many wagon-loads. At one time a 
little section of the main flock got belated in reaching the roosting-placc, 
and settled in a heavy beech wood near our house in Indiana, and the nois(! 
they made resembled a terrific tornado ; and they piled on to the trees in 
such numbers that all the weak limbs were broken off, and hundreds of 
large trees, such as stood leaning, and were weak at the roots, were entirely 
broken down. We spent hours of the evening in that temporary roost, 
witnessing thtir operations, and trying to imagine the vastness of the mul- 
titude. There is great danger in visiting such a roost, from the falling 
timber. In one long occupied, all that is liable to break has been prostrated, 
and there is less danger, so there is less commotion. Tiiey often sit so low, 
and remain so quiet, that you may approach near enough to kill half a score 
at a blow. A charge of shot sent into a full tree brings down a great 
number. When they alight upon a tree that breaks mider the mass, they 
fly and light upon the backs of others already loading a tree all it can beai-, 
and so the additional weight perhaps produces a second crash, and sometimes 
crash after crash, almost without cessation. That was the case upon tlie 
evening mentioned. The breaking commenced at dusk, when they began 
alighting, and continued until we left at midnight. In the morning about 
two hundred acres were literally covered with broken timber. 

A pigeon nesting-place is a still greater curiosity than a pigeon-roost. It 
covers hundreds of acres of dense forest, and every tree is covered with nes's 
almost as closely as the birds can build them, by laying a few loose twigj 
together among the branches. It is an easy matter to load a wagon with 
squabs. Often they fall out of the frail nests, and fall a prey to wild aninuils 
and wood hogs. Audubon gives a very truthful picture of the immense 
numbers of wild pigeons in the great West. To ns it is the more interest- 
ing, because we know it to be true. 

Those who have read Audubon, or others who have written accounts of 
pigeon-roosts, and can believe the trutli, will be able to realize the extent of 
tiic trade we have spoken of. 

Having now, we hope, said enough about birds to create an interest in 
their behalf, and induce a study of their character, and their value to the 
farmer, we shall leave the subject for another, which, though about snuill 
things, is of great importance to all our readers. 

Sec. 12.] 




'isg«^A=ff:.^ hat arc Insects? — The term is iipplied to all, or nearly 
all, the family of bugs, worms, flies, wasps, moths, 
millers, and small creeping things that infest a farm, 
and all are generally ranked as pests, though erro- 
neously, as M'e will show hy-and-by, some of tliem 
being highly beneiicial. 

The word insect comes from two Latin words, 
signifying cut into, or notched ; and the body of a 
perfect insect, as a wasp, is cut into and divided into 
three distinct segments — the head, thorax, and abdo- 
men, with two or three pairs of legs, and one or two 
pairs of wings, and it breathes through holes in the 
sides of the body. Insects commence life in eggs, 
which hatch into worms or larvae, such as maggots 
or catei-pillars, and these, after doing immense mis- 
chief, as in that state they are voracious gormandizers, undergo transforma- 
tion to the pupa or chrysalis state, and from that to the bug or butterfly 
form, during which the eggs are laid in such vast numbers, that the species 
are propagated so rapidly that the art of man seems insufficient to stay their 
ravages, if of a ravaging breed, and hence he must look to natural aids. It 
is for this that we have advocated protection to birds, because they are great 
insect destroyers. Pestiferous insects also liave several other natural ene- 
mies, which must be studied and protected by farmers. 

Besides what are considered and treated of in natural history as perfect 
insects, there are a great many sorts that come under the general name of 
insect that do not answer the above definition, sucli as some of the aphis, or 
plant-lice family, the striped and other bugs, and various worms. Some of 
the latter — for instance, the earth-worm, or angler's worm — are thought to 
be beneficial to soil. "We think, rather, it could be made more beneficial in 
its death than in its life. Anything, such as salt, lime, potash, ammonia, 
that would kill all the earth-worms, would add all the animal matter of their 
body to the soil's fertility. 

We can not go into a general examination of entomology, though we do 
earnestly advise a study of the science by all farmers, who are, above all 
other classes of the community, most in want of knowledge of insects, and 
how to distinguish between those that are pests and those that are harmless, 
or, perhaps, actual destroyers of those that are devastating our orchards, gar- 
dens, and grain-fields. Of a few of these we shall give correct pictures, 
with brief hints about their character, depredations, and such preventives as 
have been tried and proved valuable or useless. 

The great difficulty with the management of the greatest pests is their 


diminutive size. Tlie great destroyers of wlieat, the midge, TIcssian-fl_v, and 
joint--n-orm, are so minute tliat a microscope is needed for their examination. 
It is the same with the aphis tribe, and what is called the " scale insect," 
which cover the limbs of fruit-trees like a second bark, until millions of 
mouths, although very diminutive, suck away the life of the tree. Neither 
man nor bird notices these minute destroyers until it is too lute to stop their 

Now let us look at what some of these insect pests do to the farmer's 
crops. As cotton is considered the great American staple, and as America 
i>, above all competition, the land of insects, we will first enumerate the cot- 
ton destroyers found upon that plant by tliat indefatigable student of ento- 
mology, Townend Glover, who was employed by the Patent Office to collect 
infiirmation upon the subject. 

242. Insects Infesting the Coltosi-P!anti — A species of cantharidcs, similar 
to the striped potato fly, feeds upon the nectar or pollen, and sometimes eats 
the petals of the flowers. Tliese are injurious, and several others found in 
the flowers did not appear to be so. 

A leaf beetle eats holes in the petals, and, some say, injures the bolls. A 
large, green, thorny, poisonous caterpillar damages the foliage in August 
aiul September. It also attacks Indian corn. If handled incautiously, its 
spines inflict painful wounds. This large worm is in strong contrast with the 
diminutive cotton-louse, which destroys the young plant in w-et seasons. 

The boll-worm, however, is the great destroyer. Their presence in a cot- 
ton-field is indicated by the great number of young bolls fallen to the ground, 
after the inside has been eaten out. Before it falls, the worm crawls out and 
attacks others, which in turn fall ; and if the worms are numerous, all the 
bolls may be destroyed, just as all the plums of a tree are destroyed by 

A small green caterpillar feeds upon and rolls itself in the leaves of the 
cotton 2)lant; and a solitary hairy caterpillar, of a yellowish color, eats the 
leaves; and a green, smooth-skinned one feeds upon the blossoms ; and also 
several very slender, brownish span-worms. A small beetle, of a greenish, 
metallic color, barred with dirty cream-color, often seen in the holes made 
by boll-worms, is not thought a destroyer. It only follows in the path of 
insects that do destroy. 

Various other small insects are found on the plant, but it is not certain 
that they arc destructive, while several are well ascertained to be highly 
beneficial to tlie cotton-planter. Among these we enumerate the lady-bird 
{Coccinella), which, both in the larva and perfect state, devours myriads of 

The planter and overseer should learn to distinguish these from noxious 
insects, and instruct their hands to protect them. 

The larva of the bee-winged fly also destroys lice, and ichneumon flies de- 
posit eggs in their bodies. 

Tiger beetles {Clcimlella) are also destroyers of the noxious insects. Ants 


climb the cotton-stalks to feed iipon aphis, and not upon the plant. Spiders, 
too, catch moths in their nets, and also seize and devour otlier insects. The 
great aim should be to learn whicli of all the insects found in the cotton-field 
are friends, and which foes. 

The boll-worm, and the one which is some seasons so destructive to Indian 
corn in the milk, are declared by some, upon pretty good authority, to be 
identical. The chrysalis is of a bright chestnut brown ; the moths, a tawny 
yellow color. The upper wings yellowish, shaded with green or red, in some, 
with a dark band, and crescent-shaped mark near the center of the wing. 
Tlie under wings are lighter colored, bordered with black. 

To prevent depredations from the boll-worm, it is recommended to light 
fires around the field at night, to attract the moths when they begin to make 
their appeai'auce. Doubtless many will be attracted to the light and de- 
stroyed. Tliey have also been destroyed by placing plates upon stakes set 
among the cotton, in which about half a gill of vinegar and molasses is 
placed, mixed, four of vinegar to one of molasses. This attracts the moth, 
which perishes in the mixture. This kind of moth-trap requires a good d-eal 
of labor, for the plates must be visited every evening and replenished, while 
the moths last. The same plan will be found a good one to catch other 
moths tlian those which infest cotton. 

243. Insects Destructive to Indian Corn and Wheat. — ^The insect which eats 
into the grains of Indian corn is not only a destructive one, but when it in- 
fests the ears that are wanted for cooking in their green state, it is trouble- 
some and disgustingly otiensive. It only feeds while the corn is in the 
"roasting car" condition. At first it is so small as to be almost impercept- 
ible, and doubtless man}' a one gets between the teeth of the eater of early 
green corn, even in this city, for here we have seen a great many marks of 
their ravages. It is, however, mucli worse at the South. Slieltered under 
the husk, it eats voraciously, and increases in size rapidly, until about an 
inch long. Some are brown, some green, some striped. In fact, there is no 
uniformity in color. Tlie body is sparingly clothed with short hairs, rising 
from black spots or warts. The worm leaves the ear and goes into the 
ground to undergo its transformation. 

If farmers, particularly JSTorthern ones, would watch the first appearance 
of these insects, and try to destroy the moths, they might save themselves 
much loss in the iuture, for all insects of tliis kind are wonderfully prolific. 
There is an ichneumon fly which preys upon this insect, and the habits of 
that fly should be studied, and, if possible, tlie family increased. Birds, too, 
are fond of this species of worms ; probably because the food it fattens upon 
makes sweet morsels for their palates. 

The destruction of tire grains of corn eaten by this worm is only a part of 
the damage that ensues. The grains eaten are upon tlie small end of the ear, 
and here grows a fungus, which often destroys the ear. It also oftentimes 
affords a secure harbor for otlier insects, which destroy wliat tlie worms have 
left. The corn-worm does more damage in dry seasons than wet ones, owiiif 


fo the fact that tlie silk grows irregularly, or continues longer green, and the 
worms often cat ofi" the silk before the kernel is fructified. 

Another insect infesting Indian corn at the South is called Sylvanits 
quadricollis—xi diminutive beetle, which hides between the grains, and 
loosens them from the cob, devouring the germ first, and then the white 
starchy part of the kernel. These insects sometimes exist in vast nutnbers, 
and arc then very destructive. Sometimes they destroy the germ in such a 
way that its absence is imperceptible, and that causes disappointment when 
it is planted as seed. Kiln-drying is recommended when the corn is to be 
nsed for food, but not for seed. Quick-lime is recommended, strewed among 
tlie ears of corn in the crib. If put up with husks on, salt has proved 

There is another insect that troubles corn in the Southern States — the 
corn-borer. Tiiis is called a bill-bug, or corn-borer. It bores into the stalk 
just at the surface of the earth, and deposits its eggs. The grub eats the sub- 
stance of the stalk, and the transformation takes place in the cavity eaten 
out, where the pupa remains till spring, and then comes forth a beetle, in its 
tarn to deposit eggs in the young corn. 

These insects have been very destructive in Alabama and several other 
Southern States, and, like many other pests, may gradually become acclimated 
faither and farther north, till all the corn-growing region is infested. Farmers 
should be on the look-out for these " borers," and also bear in mind that the 
best remedy yet found is to pull up all corn-stalks, after harvest, and pile 
and burn them. These insects are usually most troublesome in swamp lands. 

The larva of the angoumas moth is very destructive to corn, as -well ns 
wheat and other cereals, when stored ; and in the South, in the open field. 
The grub is one fourth inch long in corn, and less iu wheat. It spins a 
cocoon in the cavity eaten out when it goes into the pupa state. From a 
small round hole previously made, it emerges a moth, with long, narrow 
wings, of a yellowish gray color, of satin-like luster, fringed with long hairs. 
The insects grown in maize are larger, though identical with the wheat in- 
t-ects. Tliis insect is not confined to M-arm latitudes, but is more troublesome 
there than farther north. We have seen the moths swarming in myriads 
about corn-houses and around wheat-stacks. The female lays from sixty to 
ninety eggs, which hatch into minute white worms in four to six days, each 
one of which makes a lodgment in a grain of corn, where it eats, and ma- 
tures in three weeks; so that two sets mature in one season, the pupa of the 
second growth remaining in the grain till spring. 

It is said that this insect was first observed in North Carolina, about forty 
years ago. They will fly into a candle sometimes, in a granary, in such 
numbers as fo extinguish the light, and doubtless could be destroyed by fire 
to a great extent. Smear a cask with one head, on the inside, with tar or 
molasses, and place a light in it, and you will catch quantities of the moths. 
Where they abound, it is advisable to store corn unhusked ; and salt is 
also useful, sprinkled iu as the corn is put in the crib, just as hay is salted. 


"We know places where this insect is so trouhlesome to farmers, that it is only 
by great care that they can keep corn or wheat over from one crop to an- 
other. In west Tennessee and northwest Mississippi they are excessively 

Several remedies have been tried, with success in some cases and failure 
in others, imder apparently the same circumstances. We will name some 
of them. After the grain is thoroughly cleaned, spread it upon white sheets, 
or boards, or a tin roof, or, if convenient, a flat rock is better than either, 
and some use a clay floor, and let it lie in the sun until it gets hot, and then 
put it np in tight casks. Kiln-drying at 176° kills the insect and the germi- 
nating power of the corn at the same time. If grain is placed in tight casks, 
and the gas arising from burning charcoal conveyed to it by a tube, which 
nuiy be iron next the fire, and flexible tube next the cask, for convenience, so 
as to fumigate the grain, the insect is destroyed without injury to the germ. 
An infusion of the fumes of chloroform will kill these or any other insects 
iu a close vessel. Even a few drops jjut in a bottle with insects, corked up, 
deprives them of life directly. It will not, however, destroy eggs, as the 
heating of the corn does. Heating it, by piling it up damp, has been prac- 
ticed ; but cai'e must be taken, if this is practiced, that it does not overheat 
and get musty. If it does, it should be washed before grinding. 

Lime has been effectively tried, entirely preventing the ravages of the 
insect, by storing the grain, ready prepared for the mill, in tight casks or 
bins, and covering by sifting over the top an inch or two deep of finely- 
powdered lime. Whenever the grain is v\-anted for the mill, run it through 
the winnowing machine, and blow out the lime. A trifle will adhere to the 
furze of the kernels, but it does uo harm — it is rather beneficial to the flour 
or meal. 

244. The Rice Weevil. — This is another pestiferous insect, which not only 
destroys rice, but attacks other grain upon the upland portion of a rice 
plantation. This weevil {Calandra orysos) resembles the one whose ravages 
we have noticed in 243, which is the Calandra granaria. All true weevils 
are beetles, with long snouts, and only depredate upon dry grain. 

Many of us consumers of rice have seen the rice weevil, which has 
hatched out of eggs deposited by the female parent, one in each grain, 
where it hatches, and the young larva eats out all the substance, making 
food of its habitation. By-and-by the weevil comes out, and the sexes meet, 
and the female deposits its eggs iu sound grains, and so on until all are 

When very plenty in rice, it makes anything but a savory dish. It is the 
same with wheat. We have eaten bread that tasted as though we had about 
an even mixture of bread and meat. " Weevilly flour," we have heard said, 
was not unwholesome. Perhaps not ; to us it is most decidedly unpalatable, 
and no art of cooking wheat or rice will hide the weevil flavor. It looks 
and tastes of weevil, even in the buttermilk and saleratus biscuit of the most 
liberal user of that salt. 


Tlie rice weevil has often been found in rice inipoitod from China, and it 
may have been introduced into tiiis country from thence. It differs, both in 
appearance and habits, a little from the grain weevil. It is said to attack 
rice in the field as well as after it is stored. It also attacks Indian corn in 
the field, if left out till late in the fall, or until it becomes cjuite dry, in tiiose 
States at the South where this insect most abounds. 

The same remedies that will answer for oije variety of weevil will answer 
for all. Wc give a few more remedies. 

245. To Destroy Weevil. — Grain subject to depredations from the weevil, 
which develops and matures in the heart of the seeds, and which imparts 
considerable heat to the bulk of the pile, equal to or above blood-heat, is 
easily detected on thrusting the hand into the body of the grain, by means 
of the great heat of the mass. 

In France, large quantities of grain are stored up against time of scarcity ; 
and in order to protect it from the depredations of the insects that prey upon 
it, commissioners have been appointed to examine into the means of destroy- 
ing them, -who have reported that a small quantity of chloroform or sulphuret 
of carbon put into the interior of the grain pit (which is usually in the 
ground), and then hermetically sealed up, will destroy all the pests. Abn^it 
seventy-five grains of sulphuret of carbon arc sufficient for about four bnsliels. 
Grain put up in rail pens, as is the custom in the West, may be treated with 
equal success with this agent, by covering the heap with a tarpaulin or close 
woven cloth. 

A successful farmer in Broome Co., N. Y., recommends cutting wheat while 
in the milk, and the straw green, and salting it in the mow or stack. He says : 

" About fourteen years ago the weevil appeared upon this farm, and quite 
seriously affected the wheat crop. We commenced also about that time 
cutting our wheat very green, as soon as it was out of the milk, no matter 
how green the straw or heads ; and in order to preserve it the better in the 
mow or stack, always applied salt liberally. For many years I liave salicd 
my grain mows and stacks, but put none upon my hay. I am now cutting 
my wheat as green as usual. 

" From my own experience, I am satisfied that if the wheat is thus treated, 
and not thrashed until after it has been some time piled up, the insect will 
be destroyed in some of its transformations. At any rate, whoever tries tiie 
experiment will be well surprised in the value of his wheat and straw. 
Where straw is fed to stock — and all mine goes that way — it is sought Ibr 
with keener relish, and makes better manure, while the wheat is much 
heavier and plumper than when not so treated. 

"I ought to say, perhaps, that the weevil has not troubled the farm since 
that year, although wheat has been grown every year. Almost any year a 
few may be ibund, but none to do any damage. My soil is a slaty, gravelly 
loam, and my seeding is usually all done from the 1st to the 10th of Septem- 
ber, and the best variety of wheat thus far has been the Uuc-stem, a beauti- 
ful variety of white wheat." 

Seo. 12.] KNTOMOLOGIOAL. 209 

Another Broome County farmer, who thought the yellow-birds destroyed 
his wheat, wished a neighbor " would get a gun and kill some yellow-birds, 
which farmers generally suppose destroy the wheat. Mr. R. declined, as he 
does not like to kill birds of any kind. Out of curiosity, however, he killed 
one of the birds and opened the crop, when he found that the bird, instead 
of eating the wheat, ate the weevil — the great destroyer of the wheat. He 
found as many as two hundred weevil in the bird's crop, and hut fori?' grains 
of wheat, and these had the weevil in them. This is a very important dis- 
covery, and should be generally known. The bird resembles the canary, 
and sings beautifully." 

246. Wheat Insect vs. Weevil. — ^Tliere is a confusion of tongues in relation 
to the M'cevil that we have described (244, 245), and the one that attacks the 
wheat in the milk. 

The insect that has injured the wheat crop so extensively in New York, 
Pennsylvania, and Ohio, is not the one generally known as the weevil. This 
insect, called " red weevil," " wheat-midge," " the insect," etc., differs very 
much from the Calandra granaria, as that only injures the ripened kernel 
of wheat or com after it is stacked or housed, or even after it is in the bin 
of the granary or grist-mill. The weevil exhibits in swarms around the 
barn, the female laying her eggs on the grain, and the grubs as soon as 
hatched work into the kernel, consuming all but the bran, without breaking 
that, so as to show tliat all is rottenness within. The ravages of this insect, 
as we have already stated, are so destructive at the South, that it is difficult 
to keep wheat and corn. The latter is generally put up with the shucks on, 
which is damp or else heavily salted. "Wheat is kc]:)! in close casks or tight 
bins by covering with flour of lime an inch deep over the surface. 
"The insect that has destroyed so much grain in past seasons is a 
yellow fly (with blue wings), about one tenth of an inch in length ; it 
deposits its eggs, while the wheat is in blossom, within the chaffy scales of 
the flower, during the evening twilight and dark stormy days, in numbers 
from two to forty, which hatch in ten days and completely destroy the germ 
of the berry. The maggot is reddish yellow, about one sixteenth of an inch 
long, or perhaps an eighth when full-grown." 

" It is supposed that it leaves the wheat and winters in the ground. That is 
the time to kill them. Salt is undoubtedly the remedy. Tiie fly is hardly 
ever seen ; they never fly in the sunshine. The weevil fill the air like mus- 
ketoes in a swamp. Tliis insect hides on the stems and leaves, shaded from 
the heat of tlio sun. This is a northern insect; the weevil is a southern one." 

" Tiiis insect M-as first seen in America about the year 1828, in the nortliern 
part of Vermont and borders of Lower Canada. It first made its appearance 
in nortliern Ohio in the year 1843, and its ravages have rapidly increased 
from year to year." 

Dr. Harris recommends brimstone fumigation of the plants. That would 
be impossible, almost, on whole counties. Flour of lime sown on wet wheat 
has appeared to prevent the work of destruction. Deep plowing the stubble, 


and not sowing any grain upon it next year, might eradicate the insect, if 
all who arc affected would unite in that course, as all must in any other that 
sliould be adopted. 

The remedy recommended by our correspondent m Broome Co., of salting 
the cut wheat in the mow or stack, would not answer, for the maggots already 
burrowed in the ground for winter, but the salt must be applied to the land 
in liberal quantities — say five to ten bushels per acre. We cut up the cut- 
worms effectually upon our corn ground this season with a handful of salt to 
a hill. The corn fired a little at first, but it is growing beautifully now. 
Every bug or worm can be killed in the soil, with salt, and we have no 
doubt that will be found the most sure way of ridding the country of this 
terrible pest of wheat-growers. The Cccidomyia tritici of Kirby is what we 
take to be the insect called the " red weevil." 

A " close observer" of the habits of the midge, says of one who had 
written of the insect's wintering in the ground : 

" The writer is mistaken in some of his facts as to the habits of the insect, 
as he can very easily satisfy himself by getting a few heads of wheat in the 
proper season that are afiected and putting them in a small glass jar. He 
will see that the worm does not go into the earth, but corner outside of the 
head after desti-oying the grain of wheat it hatched in, and weaves itself up 
into a snug little cocoon on the under side of the outside chafi". If he exam- 
ine that cocoon after a time, he Avill find the worm has changed into a new 
shape, and will ultimately come out a winged insect. I have never yet 
been able to find the worm seeking shelter in the earth. It is this knowl- 
edge of the habit of the insect that induces the belief that liberal salting of 
the grain in mow or stack is fatal to it." 

Townend Glover, who is pretty good authority, says of this pest : 

" The parent fly deposits her eggs in the beginning of July, and' in the 
opening flowers of the grain, or when the wheat is still in the milky state. 
The eggs hatch in about eight days, when the little yellow maggots, or 
worms, maybe found within the chafty scales of the grain. The seed scales 
of grass also sometimes serve as a shelter for these depredators. The worms, 
which are of a bright yellow or orange color, do not exceed an eighth of an 
inch in length, and are ofren much smaller. I have seen as many as twelve 
within the chafl" of one single grain, sent to the Patent Oftice from Ohio. 
Tliese maggots prey upon the wheat wl^en only in a milky state. "When 
they begin their depredations, soon after the blossoming of the plant, they 
do the greatest injury, as the grains never fill out. Toward the last of July 
or beginning of August the full-grown maggots cease eating, and become 
sluggish and torpid, jireparatory to shedding their skins, which takes place in 
the following manner : Tlie body of the maggot gradually shrinks in length 
within its skin, and becomes more flattened and less pointed, as readily may 
be seen through its delicate transj^arency. Tiiis torpid state lasts only a few 
days, after which the insect casts its skin, leaving the latter entire, except a 
little rent at one end of it. These empty cases, or skins, may be found in 

Sec. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 211 

great abundance in the wheat-ears, after the molting process is completed. 
Mr. J. W. Dawson, of Pictou, Nova Scotia, says that sometimes the maggot 
descends from the plants and molts on the surface of the ground. After 
shedding the skin, it recovers its activity, and writhes about at first, but 
takes no food. It is shorter, somewhat flattened, and more obtuse than 
before, and is of a deeper yellow color, with an oblong greenish spot in the 
middle of the body. Within two or three days after molting, the maggots 
either descend of their own accord or are shaken out of the ears by the wind, 
and fall to the ground. They do not let themselves down by threads, as 
has been supposed by some, for they are not able to spin. Nearly all of 
them disappear before the middle of August, and they are rarely found in 
the grain at the time of harvest. Hon. "William D. Lindsley, of Sandusky 
City, Ohio, however, sent me several specimens of wheat with this insect in 
it as late as the beginning of August. From observations and remarks made 
by intelligent farmers, it appears that the descent of these insects is facilitated 
by falling rain and heavy dews. Having reached the ground, the maggots 
soon burrow under the surface, sometimes to the depth of an inch, those 
which have not molted casting their skins before entering tlie earth. Here 
they remain witliout further change through the following winter. It is not 
usually before June that they are transformed to pupae, this change being 
effected witliout another molting of the skin. This pupa state lasts but a 
short time, a week or two at most, and in many cases only a few days. 
Under the most favorable circumstances, the pupa works its way to tlie 
surface, before liberating the included fly, and when the insect has taken 
wing, the empty pupa shell, or skin, will be seen protruding from the ground. 
In other cases, the fly issues from its pupa skin in the earth, and comes to 
the suiface with flabby wings, which soon expand and dry on exposure to 
the air. Tliis last change occurs mostly in the months of June and July, 
when great numbers of the flies have been seen apparently coming from the 
ground in fields wlierc grain was raised the year before. 

"The wheat-midge, or fly, 'is a small orange-colored gnat, with long, 
slender, pale-yellow legs, and two transparent wings reflecting the tints of 
the rainbow, and fringed with delicate hairs. Its eyes are black and prom- 
inent ; its face and feelers, yellow ;. its antennje, long and blackish. Tliose 
of the male are twice as long as the body, and consist of only twelve joints, 
which, except at the base, an oblong-oval, somewhat narrowed in the middle, 
are surrounded by two whorls of hairs. These insects vary much in size. 
The largest females do not exceed one tenth of an inch in length, and many 
are found toward the end of the season less than half this length. The males 
are usually smaller than the females, and somewhat paler in color.' Mr. 
Lindsley sent several of these insects to tlie Patent Office in August, 1855, 
and stated that they have been extremely destructive in several parts of his 
district last year (1854), and that in some places the cattle were turned into 
the field in order to eat the straw and what little was left of the grain, the 
main crop not being worth harvesting. These flies are likewise said to be 


much more numerous and destructive on the edges of fields than in the 
center, and in some cases when the edges were completely worthless, the 
center bore comparatively a good crop. 

" Fumigation with sulpliur, and burning weeds on tlie windward side of 
the field, when the grain is in blossom, have been recoinmended. Air-slacked 
lime or wood-ashes, strewn over the grain wlicn in blossom, in the proportion 
of one bushel of lime or ashes per acre, to be scatlered over the field when 
the jjlants are wet with dew or rain. Two or three applications have some- 
times been found necessary. Plowing up the ground, also, to destroy the 
maggots ; and the dust-chaff, or refuse straw, if found to contain any of these 
insects, should be immediately burned. In those parts of New England 
where these insects have done the greatest injury, according to Dr. Harris, 
the cultivation of fall-sown or winter grain has been given up, and this for 
some years to come will bo the safest course." 

247. The Joint-Worm. — One of the greatest pests that Virginia farmere 
have had to contend with in M-hcat-growing is the joint-worm. It has been 
more destructive than the weevil, and in some cases as great a pest in that 
State as the midge has in New York. 

Tlio following is Glover's description of this insect : 

" The joint-worm (Artr//^o/»rt hardt i), ^v\nch has committed such ravages 
in tlic wheat-fields of Virginia, comes from a small, black, four-winged fly, 
about an eighth of an inch in length. Tiie female lays several eggs in the 
outer sheath of the stalk above the joints. After they hatch, the worms 
commence feeding within the sheath, and the constant irritation produced 
by I hem forms a woody gall, or rather succession of galls, in the cavity of 
each of wiiich lies a small, footless maggot, about the seventh or eighth of 
an inch in length, having a body wnth thirteen segments, and of a pale, 
glossy, yellowish color. The number of worms in each cluster of galls varies 
from four to ten, or even more. The substance of the stalk attached becomes 
brittle, and either partially or entirely fills its central cavity, and frequently 
distorts it into various irregular shapes. I have often observed young root- 
lets ])utting out immediately below a joint so affected. Tiie worms on the 
stalks of wheat, when examined in Febrnar}', were yet in the larva, but 
early in March several had assumed the pupa state. The}' were about an 
eighth of an inch in letigth, of a pale yellow color, which as the pupa3 were 
near coming out, became afterward nearly black. These pupa3 had the 
rudiments of wings, legs, and antemiaj as in the perfect fly, but were motion- 
less. Late in April and the beginning of May tlie flies made their appear- 
ance through holes gnawed through the tough., woody covering of the gall- 
like excrescence in which they had passed the winter. Tiiis transformation, 
however, took place in a warm room. Tliese flies are about an eighth of an 
inch in length, of a black color, the knees, joints, and feet being tinged 
with yellow. The males, according to Dr. Harris, vary from the females by 
being smaller, and in having no ])iercers. The joints of the antemia; are 
likewise longer, and surrounded with whorls of little hairs. The hind body 

! I 

Sec. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 213 

is shorter, less pointed at the extremity, and is connected with the thorax 
bj a longer stem. He also says, that among fifteen females only one male 
was found. This corresponds with what I have observed, as out of sixty to 
eighty joint-worm flies, produced from diseased stalks of wheat, I only pro- 
cured one. male answering to his description, and eiglit parasites, not quite 
a tenth of an inch in length, of a dark metallic shade, with yellow legs, and 
the antennae much thicker at the end. These flies were furnished with four 
transparent, dotted wings. It is somewhat incomprehensible how it happens 
that so many females appear at the same time without more males. 

" Another four-winged fly also made its appearance from the same stalks, 
of about an eighth of an inch in length, with an abdomen and legs of a 
briglit yellow. The head and tliorax were of a dark color, and somewhat 
metallic luster. Tiie wings were transparent, dotted, and fringed with short 
hairs, and the piercer reached to the middle of the under part of the abdo- 
men. Di". Han-is states tliat it has been found in Massachusetts, that plow- 
ing in the stubble lias no cfi'ect upon the insects, which remain alive and 
uninjured under tlie slight covering of earth, and easily make tlieir way to 
tlie surface, when tlicy have completed their transformation. A free use of 
manure and thorough tillage, by promoting a rapid and vigorous growth of 
the plant, may render it less liable to suffer from the attacks of the insect. 
It lias been stated that t'.iis fly, like the wheat-midge, does more injury on 
the edges of fields than in the middle. 

" At the Joint-Worm Convention, held at Warrentown, Virginia, in 185i, 
the following was recommended : Prepare well the land intended for wheat, 
and sow it in the beginning of autumn witli the earliest and most tlirifty 
and hardy varieties, and do nothing to retard the ripening of the crop by 
grazing or otherwise. Use guano or some other fertilizer liberally, partic- 
ularly when seeding corn-land or stubble. Burn the stubble on every field 
of corn, rye, or oats, and all thickets or other harbors of vegetable growth 
contiguous to the crop. Sow the wheat in as large bodies and in as compact 
forms as practicable ; and if possible, neighbors should arrange among them- 
selves to sow adjoining fields the same year. Feed all the wheat, or other 
straw, which may be infected, in racks or pens, or on confined spots ; and 
on or before the first of May carefully burn all the straw which has not been 
fed. The refuse of wheat, such as screenings, etc., should also be destroyed, 
as the pupa ease is hard and not easily softened by dampness or wet." 

We can add nothing to this preventive, except a recommendation to com- 
post the refuse of the cattle, instead of burning it. Make a heap that will 
undergo a heating fermentation, and the eggs will be destroyed, and the 
manure will be more valuable than the ashes. 

248. The Hessian-Fly. — ^This is thp common name of an insect that at one 
time threatened to put a stop to wheat-growing in all the Northern and 
Middle States. This insect {Cecidomyia destructor) obtained its name from 
the fact of its (supposed) importation with the Hessian soldiers of the Revo- 
lution, though this fact has been strongly disputed. It might have been in 


the country before, and it might also have been imported. It was first pub- 
licly noticed in 1776, at Flatbiish (L. I.), and on Staten Island, in the vicinity 
of Sir William Howe's debarkation of those mercenaries of King George, 
and it was quite in keeping with the feelings of the people that they should 
readily credit the charge, that they had brought this among the other evils 
of war. At any rate, it multiplied and spread rapidly, and was for a time 
looked upon as a scourge almost as great as tire and sword. Of late years, 
liowever, it appears to be dying out. It is subject to the attack of parasites, 
which have done more than all the arts and strength of man to rid his land 
of this pest. 

Tlie greatest destroyer of the Ilessian-fly is a shining black four-winged 
fly, about the tenth of an inch in lengtii. Do not mistake this friend for 
your foe, and compass its destruction. Many sensible men have made this 
mistake, and very aptly, too ; for, as they will tell you, they have actually 
seen the fellow come out of the dried skin of the Hessian. So they did ; but 
not until the destroyer of wheat had been destroyed by an insect that fed 
upon his vitals. 

The parasite of the Cccldomyia destructor is the Ceraphron destructor of 
Say, and it is a question of vast consequence to wheat-growers what they 
can do to promote th.e growth of this insect, which has already been of such 
vast benefit to tliem. 

"We have no doubt that the parasite of the wheat-midge will do the same 
kind of service, and perhaps exterminate that pest. 

The Hessian-fly is a very small two-winged gnat. The female deposits 
her eggs soon after the wheat begins to grow, say in October, for lat. 39^, 
40°, 41°, in tlie cavities between the little ridges of the blades. In from 
four to fifteen days the eggs hatch, and the diminutive maggots M-ork down 
into the leaf-sheath and there spend the winter. The fly works from August 
to January, according to latitude and climate influences, so that what would 
be a remedy in one place would not be in another. In fiict, it is asserted that 
the fly sometimes works upon Avheat in the spring ; so the following recom- 
mendation would not be eflectual. That is : 

About the middle of August sow a strip of wheat adjoining where you 
intend to put your cyo\> — say one or two acres. About the middle of Sep- 
tember sow your field. When that lias come up and shows cleverly, plow 
under the first sown ; turn it under well. Your fly is headed and your crop 
is safe. 

In the particular locality of the man who says " that remedy wont fail," 
perhaps it will not. 

The maggots within the leaf-sheath lie dormant through the winter, and 
do not stop the growth of the wheat until just before it is ready to blossom, 
when if there are several on a stalk, it withers and dies. The worms do not 
eat the stalk, but suck up the sap and poison it. A full-sized maggot is 
three twentieths of an inch lon^', with a hard skin, of a bright chestnut color, 
and looks as much like a flax-seed as anything it can be compared to. This 

Seo. 12] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 215 

appearance remahis, but the outside is a dried skin inclosing the pupa, whicli 
advances to perfection in April or May, and it is these early tlies that lay 
eggs upon spring wiieat. It is asserted that there are three broods in a year. 
Tlie fly is about tlie tenth of an inch long ; the head, antennae, and thorax, 
black ; the iiind body tawny, the wings tawny at the base, and black and 
hairy at the ends, expanding about a quarter of an inch. The legs are pale, 
red, or brown, and feet black. The antennse are jointed, and surrounded 
with whorls of short hairs. 

With the above short description and microscope in hand, it will not be 
difficult for any observing person to determine the character of an insect 
found upon his wheat, so as to decide whether it is the Ilessian-fly or the 
Ilessian-fly destroyer. 

249. Insects Injurious to Fruits. — Probably of all the tribe of pests that 
infest fruit-trees, that known as curculio, or plum weevil {Rhijnchmnus 
?ienuphar), does the most damage. It has nearly driven the plum-trees 
away from every farm, and has in some seasons destroyed the peaches, and 
done incalculable damage to the apple crop. In fact, for many years pre- 
vious to 1860, there was not a good apple crop in all the Eastern States, 
owing, in a great measure, to the curculio. Small as this pest is, it is capable 
of doing great mischief to all the fruits, and its sting is death to plums, 
apricots, and nectarines, and very injurious to cherries and pears. The finer 
the fruit, the greater the injury. A very hardy plum or cherry may survive 
a sting from this insect, which leaves a peculiar, crescent-shaped wound, and 
makes an ugly scar and a hard gnarl in the fairest fruit. 

Tliis insect is found in nearly all the States of the Union ; it is worst in 
the Middle ones, or between latitudes 39^ and 41°. 

By the following minute description by Glover, the little villain may be 
known by any one, though not previously acquainted with him : 

"The perfect curculio is about two tenths of an inch in length, of a dark 
brown color, with a spot of yellowish white on the hind part of each M'ing- 
case. The head is furnished with a long, curved snout, or bill, with which 
it is enabled to bore into the unripe fruit by means of jaws placed at the 
end of the bill. Tlie wing-cases, which are rigid, uneven, and humped, 
cover two transparent wings, by which the perfect weevil is enabled to fly 
from tree to tree ; but when these wing-cases are closed, the back appears 
v.'ithout any suture, or division, which has led to the very eiToneous idea 
among farmers that the insect can not fly. When disturbed, or shaken from 
the tree, it is so similar in appearance to a dried bud, that it can scarcely be 
distinguished, especially when feigning death, which it always does when 
alarmed. As soon as the plums are of the size of peas, the weevil com- 
mences the work of destruction by maling a semi-circular cut through the 
skin with her long, curved snout, in the apex of which she deposits a single 
egg. She then goes to another plum, which is treated in a similar manner, 
until she has exhausted her whole stock of eggs. The grubs, which are 
hatched by the heat of the sun, immediately eat their way to the stone in an 


oblique direction, where they remain, gnawing the interior, until the fruit is 
wealvoned and diseased, and by this treatment falls from the tree. Tiic 
grub, which is a small, yellowish, footless, white maggot, then leaves the 
fiillcn fruit, enters the earth, changes into a pupa, and in the first brood 
comes to the surface again, in about three weeks, as a perfect weevil, to 
propagate its species and destroy more fruit. It has not yet been decided 
whether the latest generation of the w^eevil remains in the ground all winter 
in the grub or in the pupa state. Dr. E. Sanborn, of Andover, Mass., asserts, 
however, that the grubs, after having entered the earth, return to the surface 
in about six weeks as perfect weevils, which must remain hidden in crevices 
until spring. The most popular opinion is that they remain in the larva or 
pupa state in the earth during the winter, and only reappear in the spring 
in the perfect state. The worm, or grub, is often found in the knots or ex- 
crescences which disfiguie and destroy plum-trees, and has been wrongfully 
accused of being the cause of these swellings; but it is highly probable that 
the weevil, finding in the young knots an acid somewhat similar to that of 
the unripe fruit, merely deposits its eggs therein, as the nearest substitute 
for the real plum. 

" Some of the remedies recommended for preventing the ravages of these 
insects are actually absurd, such as tying cotton round the trees in order to 
prevent tliem from ascending, when it is known that they are furnished with 
wings, and fly from tree to tree with perfect ease. Among the remedies at 
present in use, one is to cover the fruit with a coating of whitewash mixed 
with a little glue, applied by means of a syringe. Another is to spread a 
sheet upon the ground under the tree, and then jar the principal branches 
suddenly with a mallet covered with cloth, so as not to bruise tlie bark, 
when the perfect insects will fall into the sheet and feign death, and may be 
gathered and dcstroj-ed. Hogs are sometimes turned into plum orchards, 
where, by eating the fallen and diseased fruit, they materially lessen the evil. 
Coops of chickens, placed under the trees, have also been recommended. 
Then shake the trees often, and the chickens will catch and devour the 
insects. All fallen fruit should be gathered up several times in the course 
of the season, and burnt, or given to hogs, or destroyed in some other way." 

We shall now give, besides the above remedies, a few more, "infallible," 
of course, that float annually through the newspai)ers. 

250, Ciirculio Remedies. — To one pound of whale-oil soap add four ounces 
of flour of sulphur. Mix thoroughly, and dissolve in twelve gallons of 
water. To one half peek of quick-lime add four gallons of water, and stir well 
together. When fulh' settled, pour oft' the transjiarent lime-water, and add 
to the soap-and-sulphur mixture. Add to tiie same, also, say four gallons 
of tolerably strong tobacco-water. Apply tliis mixture, when thus incor- 
porated, with a garden-syringe, to your plum or other fruit trees, .so that the 
foliage shall be well drenched. If no rains succeed for three weeks, one 
application will be sufficient. Sliould frequent rains occur, the mixture 
should be again applied until the stone of tlie fruit becomes hardened. 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 217 

The person who used and recommended tliis remedy says : " The trees tliat 
received the apijlication rijiened an abundant crop of as perfect and beautiful 
plums as ever grew, while not a single plum was ripened on those trees to 
which the wash was not applied." 

He also recommends a little salt to be added to the mixture. 

It lias been stated as an important fact, that plum-trees planted in such a 
position that the fruit will hang over water, Avill never be stung by curculio; 
so that nothing is more easy than growing this delicious fruit wherever the 
trees can be so planted. Dr. Underhill, of Croton Point Vineyard notoriety, 
spates that he is never troubled, not having seen an insect upon one of 150 
trees in six years. lie formed an artificial pond, with banks constructed on 
purpose to set the trees slanting over the water. He gathers the fruit in a 
boat. He has many of the best varieties of plums so planted, and never 
saw finer fruit than he thus produces. It is an experiment that should be 
tried by every man who has the necessary conveniences. The ravages of 
the curculio have been so great for many years that we have had but few 
plums, and those inferior and high priced, in this market. 

We have the following account from James Taylor, of St. Catherine's, 
C. W., a few miles from Niagara Falls, of a pretty effectual remedy for the 
great pest of the plum-grower — the curculio. Ho says : 

" Our locality being much infested with the curculio, and observing in one 
paper issue, last spring, what had been pronounced by a Mr. Jos. H. 
Matlier, of Goshen, twenty miles southeast of the place where the writer 
resided, an effectual remedy against its ravages, allow me, for the benefit of 
your readers, to state 7ni/ exjyerience of its efficacy. The proposed remedy 
was a mixture of sulphur, lard, and Scotch snuff, to be rubbed freely on the 
trunk and branches. This I applied according to the directions, and it is 
true that I had a splendid crop of plums, some of the clioicest varieties, 
always most subject to the a^tacks of this insect, viz., the Bolmar, Huling's 
Superb, etc., being perfectly loaded ; lut marJc the result. On examining 
my trees last fall, I found all that T had ajypUed the mixture to in a dying 
state, and I have lost them all, with the exception of one or two young trees. 
The operation being rather a troublesome one, I did not apply it to as many 
as I should otherwise have done, or I should have lost more. So much for 
quack nostrums. The remedy proved worse than the disease. Perhaps my 
experience will be useful to others." 

R. G. Pardee gives the following remedy fur the curculio, which has been 
successfully practiced by a person of his acquaintance. Take fresh cow- 
droppings, and a little wood-ashes, some lime, and a little sulphur, and make 
all into a thin decoction, and throw it over the trees with a hand-basin. 
Tliis lasts until it rains ; it is then put on again. A half pound of sulphur 
to a half barrel is sufficient, and of the other substances it is not very im- 
portant as to the proportions. 

"VVe think the labor of this application would be too great. 

Dr. Trimble, of New Jersey, says that he has tried all sorts of offensive 


odors to keep off curculio, without effect. " I liave found no remedy equal 
to that of manual labor in catching and destroying the insect. It is a fact 
that some plum-trees are not infested by the curculio." 

The fullowiiig is a conversation of some experienced fruit-growers upon 
curculio remedies, and the character of the insect : 

IIenky Steele, a New Jersey nurseryman, said that he had prevented 
curculio by the use of black soap from the tallow-chandler's, dissolved in 
water and much diluted, with which the trees are syringed directly after the 
blossoms fall, after a rain, and repeated, if necessary, in consequence of being 
washed off. 

R. G. Pardee — A person present assures me that a neighbor of his 
yarded his hogs around his plum-trees, and that saved them from the curcu- 
lio. Mr. Pardee said that he thought that fresh cow or pig manure, dis- 
solved, and the water sprinkled over plum-trees, would prevent curculio. 
They dislike any sh-ong-smelling substances. 

"Wm. Lawton — You may apply cow or pig manure raw to all fruits and 
berries, but not horse manure ; that never should be used fresh — make it first 
iijto compost. 

Dr. Trimble — Tlie curculio has already commenced its ravages this spring. 
I am also satisfied that the curculio stings the bark of plum-trees and pro- 
duces the disease known as the black knot. I have made a great many 
experiments to prove the insect identical with that wliich destroys all of our 
smooth-skinned fruit. Tlie jarring of trees to shake off the curculio is effect- 
ual, but it is an immense labor, as it must be attended to every day, and 
some sunny days several times a day. I think that, unless some remedy 
for this insect can be discovered, we shall be unable to raise any fine fruit. 
It is the curculio that causes the disease in apples known as gnarly. Wo 
get no good apples in Jersey, and it is out of the question to raise plums, 
apricots, or fine peaches. We import prunes from Germany cheaper than 
we can make boxes to pack them in — the plums grow to such perfection in 
that country. 

Wm. Lawton — I have removed bushels of black knots from my cherry-trees 
and burned them. I found in all these knots a living worm. I destroy tlic 
common caterpillar by collecting them in the nests and destroying them. 

Mr. O. W. Brewster, of Freeport, 111., gave a statement of his success in 
repelling the attacks of the curculio on his plums. Early in spring he scat- 
tered lime, which had been mixed for whitewashing, under his plum-trees 
once a week, until the curculio quitted tlie field. He also scattered soap-suds 
and cliamber-lye under them in liberal quantity. He said, I have twice tried 
the same remedy, with complete success. I once applied it to a small tree, 
which matured its whole crop ; several other trees near it, which set full of 
fruit, did not ripen a specimen. If plum-trees succeeded with us well, I 
should have no fears of the curculio. 

P. II. Perry, of Collins Center, N. Y., says : 

" A gentleman lately informed me that he had raised a good crop of plums 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 219 

simply by spreading a heavy coat of fresh horse manure on the ground under 
his trees. He said it entirely prevented the ravages of the curcnlio, when 
1 their account he had not been able to gather a crop of plums for years 

Solon Eobixson read the following letter from Dobbs' Ferry. The man 
certainly can read, at least he says so, but we wonder how he can own a tree 
liable to the attacks of the curculio, and know so little about it. He says : 

'■ I have been much interested in the doings and sayings of the Farmers' 
Club, but in the various debates before that body, I have seen no statement 
advanced concerning the habits of the curculio. I have also read several 
articles concerning its depredations, but I have yet to learn whether it is a 
flying insect, or simj^ly crawls up the body of trees. 1 have several cherry- 
trees in my garden of choice varieties, and I can safely say that every cherry 
was punctured by the curculio this spring. 

"The trees are growing and have just commenced bearing. 

" The soil is sandy. 

" My neighbor, less than a hundred feet from me, has escaped its ravages. 

" Does it fly or crawl ? 

" Would a barrel or trough similar to those used on tlie elms of New 
Haven be of any service in staying its ravages ? 

" Are the worms in the common black cherry, which is universally 
inhabited, produced by the curculio ? 

" Is there any remedy for this pest ?" 

That question — " Is there any remedy for this pest ?" — has been answered 
in every agricultural paper in the world, and so it has been stated that the 
insect has wings, and yet the writer of this letter has not read of it. 

Let me ask another question : " How is it possible to enlighten people 
who will not read ? or, reading, will not understand ?" 

Dr. Trimble — I am now trying several experiments to prove that the 
same insect that stings the fruit makes the knots on the limbs. No attach- 
ment to the bole of a tree can be any protection against a flying insect like 
the curculio. The excrescence on the limb is no more remarkable than the 
insect that produces the balls upon oak-trees. Dr. T. showed specimens 
of the curculio of plums, that he had hatched out in earth covered to pre- 
vent escape, to show that the insect becomes perfect from the first laying of 
6ggs in young plums, and, as he thinks, these perfect insects lie dormant till 
spring. The question is, "Where do they hide themselves until the young 
fruit is ready for them to deposit their eggs ? 

Prof. Mapes said that a preparation called Persian Powder is said to be 
very effectual in destroying insects. 

"VVm. S. Caepentek thought that no bug-powder would rid a farm of cater- 
pillars. Something else must be done. 

Wm. Lawton said that he had cleared his farm of tent caterpillars by 
pulling down the nests by hand, with all the worms in them, when they are 
easily destroyed. 


Dr. Tkimble gave a history of the cockchafer, which remains in the ground, 
nice tlie locust, four years, and then comes forth in immense numbers, but 
in the flying state. They do not feed, and consequently do no damage to 

In our opinion, the best remedy for curculio is pigs, poultry, and birds. 
We have seen fine crops of plums grown in a curculio neighborhood, in a 
season when these pests were active, in a small lot occupied as a poultry -yard, 
in which several pigs run at large. The hens scratclicd, and the pigs rooted 
the ground, and the dove-cot also had something to do with the matter. At 
any rate, the barn was inhabited by swallows, and they catch flies, and per- 
haps curculios. 

251. — Apple and Peach WormSi — Tlie codliu moth, or apple moth {Carpo- 
capm jwmaiicUa), is the name of an injurious insect which deposits its eggs, 
in June or July evenings, in the calyx of the young apples, where they soon 
hatch, and the little worms eat their way to the heart of the fruit, where 
they continue till ready to change into the chrysalis state. " Wormy apples" 
generally ripen prematurely and f;dl. The worm is of a reddish color when 
fully grown, and ready to leave the fruit and creep into crevices of the bark 
to spin a semi-transparent cocoon, where it changes into a small chestnut- 
brown chrysalid, and that produces a moth in a few days, measuring 
seven tenths of an inch across the wings, which are of a brownish-gray color, 
crossed by many dark-colored lines, with a dark, oval spot on each wing. 
The under wings are lighter colored, shaded near the margin. As a remedy 
against this pest, it has been recommended to wrap cloths loosely around 
the forks of the trees, for a shelter for the worms to form cocoons, and then 
destroy them. We fancy that this remedy will cure but a very small part 
of the evil. Picking nji and putting all wind falls where the worms can 
never see daylight will kill more of them. 

Perhaps the best remedy for this, and many other little pests, is the Scrip- 
tural one — " Dig about the tree and dung it." That is, give it greater vigor 
of growth ; make it more productive, so that a portion of the fruit will come 
to maturity in spite of all insects. It is a well-known fact that the most 
vigorous-growing, thrifty trees exactly correspond with thrit'ty farmers — the 
more they have, the more they gain. Insects mostly attack the most 
neglected trees. 

252. Peach-Tree Borcrsi — Tlie peach-tree borer {^i^eria exitiosa) is one 
of the greatest pests of the farm, because it has almost blotted out of exist- 
ence this most valuable fruit in large districts of the country. It is believed 
by most careful observers to be the cause of nearly all the diseases which 
afiect the peach-trees, the most visible of which is *• the yellows," where the 
leaves gradually take on a yellow, sickly appearance in midsunimer, and 
frequently at the age of three or four years show scarcely a green leaf, when 
they should be clothed in the richest green, and finally wither and gradually 
perish. Tlie epitaph of tens of thousands of peach-trees all over New En- 
gland, Xew York, New Jersey, and Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, 


I I 

I 1 

Sec. 13.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 221 

would be, "Died joiiiig — attacked by boreis — tbe disease exhibited in yel- 
low leaves — speedy death followed." 

This boi'ing worm is produced from eggs deposited at the foot of the tree 
by a wasp-shaped moth, of a steel-blue color, with an orange ring about the 
abdomen. Sometimes the eggs are placed in wounds, or between forks, bi.t 
generally in the bark, close to the ground, where the worms can easily pene- 
trate into and devour the inner bark and wood just below the surface. 

Sometimes a vigorous tree will retain life year after year, with these worms 
gnawing at its vitals. Sometimes the tree is girdled and destroyed in a single 
summer. There appears to be a succession of broods in a single season. In 
the latitude of New York city, the moths come out in June and July. Nec- 
tarines and apricots are also attacked by the same insect. The plum wood 
appears too hard, and peaches engrafted on plum stocks sometimes succeed 
where, if upon their natural roots, they would never bear fruit. Tliese 
borers, when full-grown, are about an inch long, colored yellowish white, 
with an amber-brawn head. The chrysalis is brown ; it is formed in a case 
made of the gnawings of the worm, which it glues together around its body. 
The moth expands wings an inch across, transparent and veined, and bor- 
dered blue in the male, and dark blue upon the female's upper wings, and 
her body is belted with orange. 

The remedies, as preventives or cures of the peach-tree borer, are numer- 
ous. Dr. Harris, the great American entomologist, says : 

" Remove the earth around the base of the tree, crush and destroy the 
cocoons and borers which may be found in it and under the bark, cover the 
wounded parts with the common clay composition, and surround the trunk 
with a strip of sheathing-paper nine or ten inches wide, whicli should extend 
two inches below the level of the soil, and be secured by strings of matting 
above. Fresh mortar should then be placed around the root, so as to con- 
fine the paper, and prevent access beneath it; and the remaining cavity may 
be filled with new or unexhausted loam. The operation shoidd be performed 
in the spring, or daring the month of June, In the winter the strings may 
be removed, and in the following spring the trees should again be examined 
for any borers that may have escaped search before, and the protecting ap- 
plications should be renewed. The ashe& of anthracite coal have also been 
recommended to be put into the cavities made when the earth has been re- 
moved from around the trunks when searching for the worm ; and if the 
trunks are thoroughly searched three or four times a year, especially in the 
earth near the roots, and the grubs and chrysalids dug out and destroyed, 
these insects would soon cease to be as injurious as they are at present." 

The following conversation in the Farmers' Club conveys some useful in- 
formation upon this important subject: 

Solon Robinson read a letter from the Rev. J. S. Weishampel, Sen., Bal- 
timore, Md., upon the use of hot water to kill insects upon trees. He alludes 
to a letter read here some weeks since, about scalding wheat, and then sa3"s: 

" This scalding process destroys the egg of the fly, and the same process 


has been knowu to destroy tlie eggs as well as the grubs themselves, that injure 
the i)oach, plain, and other trees so greatly. Scald the stem of the tree well, 
letting the hot water get M-ell into the ground around the tree, where the 
grubs do the most harm, and a destruction of botii eggs and grub follows ; 
and, in addition to this, the scalding appears to add to the vigor of the 

"An old lady in Berks County, Pa., had a plum-tree that for many years 
bloomed and brought forth crops of fruit till half ripe, and then shed them. 
Siie often besought her husband to remove the tree, but he still pleaded, 
' Let it stand another year.' At length, one spring, after she had boiled lier 
soap, she heated the kettle full of the refuse lye to a boiling degree, and 
poured it all down the stem of the tree, intending to ' scald it to death,' as 
she said. It soon blossomed most abundantl}-, and bore a profuse crop of 
plums, which it brought to the greatest perfection, which greatly pleased the 
old lady. 

" This same principle could be applied to the destruction of every 
kind of destructive insect upon the various choice fruit-trees, either by pour- 
ing boiling water upon the limbs and stems, or by conducting a stream 
of steam through a liose or pipe, from a movable boiler, to kill both eggs 
and insects. 

" Chestnuts, too, are very liable to be worm-eaten. If they were subject- 
ed to a momentary heating (wet or dry heat), to a sufficient degree to scald, 
it would kill the germ of the worm that destroys that sweet nut. And the 
same principle would also prevent all wood used in building and machin- 
ery from becoming worm-eaten." 

Prof. Mapes — I have used it on peach-trees, until I have satisfied myself 
that a peach-tree can not be injured by hot water. 

Mr. Caepentek said that lime was the best thing he ever tried around 

Mr. "\YuEELER said that lime will not kill the grubs in the wood, 

Mr. Smith, of Connecticut — I have found no remedy except manual labor, 
thougli wood-ashes arc valuable, and so is lime. I have an orchard in full 
bearing that is fourteen years old. 

Prof. Mapks — I have never found any remedy equal to hot Avater. It 
cooks the worms. 

A letter from East Wilson, Niagara County, N. Y., says : 

"A large and interested community, comprising at least Jive thousand 
peach-growers in this county, ask for light. What can be done to stay the 
ravages of the red-Iieaded pcach-gruhf To dig him out and kill him will 
oidy insure an armistice for about ten days. Fresh wood-ashes applied to the 
trees only seem to sharpen his appetite for destruction. Hundreds of orchards 
and thousands of trees are dying from his operations. Tliere are half a 
million of peach-trees in this vicinity suffering from this pest. Will tar pre- 
vent ills operations? and will it injure the tree? Can you or any of your 
numerous readers or correspondents tell us of any specific which will kill 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 223 

the grub without iiijurhig the tree? If you can do so, you will confer a 
substantial favor upon many hundreds of your readers." 

Andrew S. Fullle — The best remedy is to preserve the birds — the natu- 
ral insect destroyers. It is their" decrease that has increased destructive 

Wm. Lawton stated that he had taken great pains to preserve birds around 
his place, and was now reaping the benefit. As to any outward application 
to kill the peach-worm, he did not know of anything that would destroy it 
without destroying the trees. If the worms are dug out, and a plaster of 
soft cow-manure is applied, the tree may recover. It is a very tedious 

Wrc72S. — ^The Secretary advocated the cultivation, or rather protection, of 
wrens and insect destroyers. 

Mr. FcLLEE said that the wren was a mischievous bird, and destroyed the 
eggs of other birds. 

A letter from P. M. Goodwin, Kingston, Luzerne County, Pa., says : 

"I observe in the transactions of the Club of July 2, it is thought that if 
a discussion of the topic of the peach-grub would elicit a remedy, it would 
be universally entertaining. My conclusion is, that trying to cure the peach- 
grub, unless where the soil is light and but few are found, is a humbug. I 
have a preventive, which I will give cheerfully : 

" When I purchased my little place on Kose Hill, overlooking a portion 
of ' Wyoming Valley,' there wei"e one hundred neglected peach-trees thereon 
— budded, and of excellent varieties — -whicli were full of grubs. Early in 
April I commenced operations by carefullj'' clearing away the grubs by 
means of the knife and wire. I then made a funnel-shaped hole around the 
base of each tree, which would hold three or four quarts of water. I filled 
the holes with boiling water, which effectually destroyed the progeny. I 
then filled the holes with a tenacious clay, and tamped it hard, leaving the 
surface around the tree cone-shaped and hard compacted. I have examined 
these trees at various times during the intervening five years, and have found 
but one tree afiected, and that with but two grubs. This mode, with me, 
has acted as a perfect preventive, and, I have no doubt, will with all who 
adopt it and exercise the same care. 

"These trees were three or four years old, and, at the time the experiment 
was made, much inferior to some from the same lot growing elsewhere, 
which were regularly examined and carefully cleared of grubs in the usual 
way. My trees are sound in wood, and look well, while the others have dis- 

" In planting peach-trees now, I would cut away the tap (not top) root 
close under where the horizontal roots put out. Having driven a stake firmly 
for each tree, I would plant it so shallow that after the lieavy rain the upper 
side of the roots will become exposed. In this way the trees are not so liable 
to become infested with the grub. I planted some trees so a year ago, and 
find the non-appearance of the grub satisfactory." 


R. G. Paedek — I have tried the hot water very often, and have ahva^'S 
found it effectual ; and I tliought that by this time everybody liad lieard of 
it, but if they have not, I hope this letter will be read and remembered. 
Instead of clay I used leached ashes, as they were more convenient, and they 
answered a good purpose. 

The Cliairnian presented a new pest of the peach — a dark-colored worm, 
about an inch long, that fixes itself in the foot-stalks of the leaves and destroys 

Wm. S. Caepentek — This insect discussion is one of great importance to 
farmers. These little, insignificant things are great -destroyers of our crops. 
What if we could discover a remedy for the bugs that eat up the potato vines, 
or a remedy for the effect of cold upon fruit-trees ; for I have noticed, within 
a day or two, that the northerly sides of the pear-trees are blasted and turned 
dark by the cold wind. The cold of a day or two in spring often destroys 
many tender vegetables. 

It was observed that cold nights sometimes have a beneficial effect upon 
fruits, by destroying some of the insects that usually prey upon them. It did 
in the spring of 1860. That season proved the most productive of fruit of 
any year in the memory of most young people. Of the hot-water remedy 
for the peach-grub, we speak from experience, that it is the best of all mc 
ever knew. Lime, too, has been tried with good results. Hon. John M. 
Clayton, of Delaware, assured us once, at his house, that the peach-trees we 
were then looking at, which M'cre so vigorous, had been treated with half a 
bushel of lime, placed in contact with the body and upjier roots, and he be- 
lieved it would continue to be a preventive of the peach-grub. 

253. Insect RemedieSt — We give the following various remedies for insects, 
all of which are vouched for by good men ; some believing one infallible, 
and some another. 

The following wash is recommended for all sorts of trees, as a preventive 
remedy against caterpillars, etc. : Potash, 20 lbs. ; air-slacked lime, half a 
bushel ; sifted wood-ashes, half a bushel ; fresh cow dung, half a bushel, 
^lix in water enough to be of the consistence of whitewash. Scrape off the 
rough bark, and rub the wash in well with a brush. 

Caustic soda loash is one of the best things we ever saw applied to a fruit- 
tree. It will make the bark as smooth as if wax-polished. It leaves no 
harbor for insects nnder pieces of dead bark. It is made by heating tiio 
common sal-soda red hot in any old iron vessel, and then making a lye of it 
— say about one pound of the salts to a gallon of water — and washing tlie 
trees with a brush. It is best to put it on in the spring. A piece of old 
stove-pipe, battered up at one end, and stuck into one of the stove-holes, 
answers very well to heat the soda in. The wash should be too caustic to 
put your hands in, and, while putting it on, it will not be worth while to 
wear a fine broadcloth coat. 

The Liijuid Brimstone Rcincdij. — M. Letellier states in the Journal of the 
Paris Horticultural Society, that a liquid formed by boiling 63 grains of red 

Sko. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 225 

American potash, and the same quantity each of flour of sulphur and soap, 
in 13 pints of water, is most excellent and efficacious in destroying insects. 
If it requires to be stronger, the quantity of potash and sulphiir may be 
doubled, but the soap must remain the same. Upon immersion, the insects 
— ants, caterpillars, cockchafers, grubs, etc. — are instantly killed, while the 
solution occasions no injury to plants. The liquid will destroy ants and 
grubs when poured into their places of resort. 

Preventive of Canker- Worins from Apple-Trees. — A letter from Maiden, 
Mass., gives a most sensible plan for a cheap preventive of canker-worms, 
which climb the boles of apple-trees : 

" Take pine boards of suitable width for four to box a tree. Cut them in 
pieces two feet long on one edge, and four feet long on the other edge. Nail 
them together in a box around the tree, with four sharp points up. This box 
is to be adjusted about the tree before the grubs come from the ground, and 
a peck of powdered lime or ashes thrown between the trunk of the tree and 
the inside of the box. The caustic lime or ashes will destroy the grubs near 
the tree, and the boxes will invite all the grubs near them to ascend and de- 
posit their eggs. I found the pinnacles covered with grubs and eggs, and 
the insects apparently contented with this highest point as a safe place, and 
tliere the eggs were deposited. 1 then removed the boxes to a considerable 
distance from the trees, and heard no more from canker-worms ; they all died 
for want of proper food." 

Anotlier plan, lately patented, to prevent worms climbing trees, looks as 
though it would be efiectual. A tin trough is made in two parts, large 
enough to encircle the tree and leave a space four or five inches between the 
trough and bole of the tree. From the outside edge of the trough a strip 
of cloth extends all around, wide enough to have its upper edge tacked to 
the tree, by which the trough filled with oil is sheltered from rain and sus- 
tained in its place, so that worms creeping upward come first in contact with 
the cloth, and if they crawl down that to get around the edge and so up the 
tree, they are caught in the oil, which, being sheltered, remains in good con- 
dition longer than when exposed. Now it is au experiment worth trying, 
and for which there is no patent, whether a strip of cloth nailed around the 
tree at one edge, and having the other extended six inches from the bole by 
a wire or limber rod, would not answer the purpose without the oil-trough. 
The under side of the cloth could be coated M-ith some kind of pitch that 
would not harden soon, being protected from sun and rain, which would 
etiectually prevent the ascension of insects — certainly much more so than 
the belt of tar as it is usually applied. 

Dr. Trimble, in answer to the question, what remedy to apply to this pest, 
said that the only remedy is the ichneumon parasites. These, in their proper 
time, will attack the worms and destroy them. In the mean time, while 
one section of the country is ravaged, another is extraordinarily fruitful. 

He introduced specimens of the caterpillar that preys upon the grapevine, 
to show that it has its parasite, one of which had just emerged from the 


body of the caterpillar. This, he hoped, M'ould prove a sufficient check to 
the ravages of this particular pest. 
254. Another Couvcrsatiou at the Club about insects. — "Wm. S. Caepentee— 

All classes of insects have tlicir favorite plants, but if these favorite plants 
fail, the insects will take to others. Last year I saw ailanthus trees iu this 
city completely covered with a worm known iu the country as the canker- 
worm. The trees were wholly stripped of foliage. We are continually im- 
porting insects iu various ways. I am told that every banana stem contains 
a worm, and some of the same sort of worms have been discovered preying 
upon the quince. 

The rose-slug is easily killed by hand in the after part of the day, by an 
application of quassia decoction, sprinkled upon the leaves, as the slugs are 
then on the upper surface. 

Extra cultivation, by which the plants grow rapidly, is the best remedy 
for squash bugs. 

Mr. Pakdee said that the best remedy is to expose the soil dug from 
a deep hole several days to the sun, and then put it back in the hole, 
patting it down solid, and then putting in the seed, and covering it lightly, 
and then spreading fine charcoal over the hill. 

Mr. Fuller— I tried this charcoal remed}', last year, most thoroughly, 
without deriving a particle of benefit. 

Mr. Pakdee — I have used charcoal, and was not troubled with bugs. 
Now it is possible that, without it, the plants would not have been troubled. 
So, after all, it is uncertain whether the charcoal was the preventive, or 
whether there were no bugs to be eradicated. 

Mr. Gakvet — I^have tried a great many remedies, and have never found 
anything so good as careful watering, and hand killing the bugs. 

E. G. Pardee — I wish every man would try the solution of aloes — two 
ounces to the gallon of water. It is such a bitter vegetable that it is 
offensive to all insects. It may be used just as strong as it can be made — 
from one fourth to a whole pound to the gallon. 

Mr. Caepextee — The canker-worm, iu the northern part of Connec- 
ticut, is now ravaging the orchards to an extent that is destructive 
to all prospects of fruit. On some large orchards there are no apples — 
in fact, nearly all the foliage of the trees has been destroyed. Can this be 
prevented ? 

Was/ling Insects from Fruit-Trcts. — Mr. Pardee read a letter from Charles 
Lincoln, of North Bridgewater, Mass., which stated tliat he succeeded in saving 
his plum-trees, last spring, from insects, by washing them fi-equently with 
clear cold water, using for the purpose a little hand instrument called the 
" hydropnlt." 

Dr. Trimble contended that all the rot in plums is caused by the sting of 
the curculio. 

Mr. Pardee thought that this statement was incorrect ; that plums fre- 
quently rot where there are no curculio. He said, thirty years ago, at Seneca 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 227 

Falls, there was no curculio to disturb the plum, and we grew great crops, 
and sometimes nearly all on a tree rotted, almost all at once. 

Geisharsfs Comjwund for Insects. — P. B. Mead (editor of the Horticul- 
turist) said that he has tried the above compound upon several kinds of in- 
sects, and found it sure death to all he had applied it upon. The objection 
to it is its liigli price — too high for common use ; if it would rid us of the 
curculio, it would make the j)lums too costly. 

John G. Beegen — It is a fact that we have a prospect this year of a larger 
crop of plums than we have had in many years, and therefore persons 
should be careful of their liasty conclusions about this or that nostrum 
driving them off. 

Mr. Mead — ^Tlie preparation I mentioned, dissolved in water and used as 
a syringe upon plum-trees, had the effect to drive off the curculio, even upon 
one side of a tree, while the other was still infested. 

Remedy for Bose-Shtgs. — Geo. H. Hite — I have found an effectual rem- 
edy against the depredations of these pests, in sifting dry dust upon the 
bushes. It is just as good as snuff, or any other bug-powder. Of course, it 
wants frequent renewal. 

Bark-Lice. — Andrew S. Fuller — If a tree is properly cultivated, it will 
grow so vigorously that it will outgrow all bad effects from attacks of plant- 

Worms Destroying Gooseberry Bushes. — R. Dixie, of Painesville, Ohio, 
inquires for a remedy for a pest upon his gooseberry and currant bushes. 
He says " they have been stripped of their leaves entirely, in one summer, by 
hosts of green caterpillars or worms about an inch in length — a number 
of broods during the season. What shall we do to get rid of the pests? I 
have used lime in powder, and dry unleached ashes, without any apparent 
beneficial effect." 

Solon Roeinson — I would try the new preparation of " attenuated coal- 
tar," which we have had exhibited here in the form of a dry powder. So 
for as I have been able to try it, I have found it particularly offensive to 
all insects. 

A. B. Dickinson — If soft soap is placed in the crotch of a tree, and left to 
work down by the rain, it will keep off all insects, even the curculio. Many 
insects are kept away by offensive smells, which do not kill them. Smoke, 
for instance, keeps off many insects. 

iVsfe of Grapevines arni other PJemts. — Dr. Trimble — Here is a specimen 
of tlio insect that curls the grape-leaf Spring is the time to look after them, 
and i)!ck them off by hand and destroy them, or they will destroy the vines. 
Here is another curious insect that infests the currant bushes. It is what we 
call lice, and these lice furnish food for a colony of ants, by their exudation 
of a sort of sweet substance. Here is the worm that curls the currant-leaf; 
and here is another curious insect that binds itself up in a web and a leaf, 
and what is remarkable, this insect is itself full of other insects— parasites 
that live upon, and in a great measure destroy it. I wish that some para- 

1 \ 


site could be found to destroy the curculio. Perhaps it may be destroyed in 
time, as the Ilcssian-fly has been. 

T/ie Measuring Worm. — Solox Robinson — If any one desires to extirpate 
the worms that infest the trees in our parks, now is the time to do it by de- 
stroying the eggs. Scraping and washing with potash is the best protection 
of the boles of the trees. If we had plenty of birds we should_get rid of the 
worms. It is only in cities, where there are so few birds, that these pests 
are so troublesome. Insects are the natural food of all birds. Even the 
domestic ones that we keep about our homestead destroy untold quantities 
of pestiferous insects that could not be got rid of in any other way. The 
greatest profit in keej>ing poultry is the good the animals do in theu- inces- 
sant pursuit of bugs and worms, which, if not destroyed, would in their turn 
destroy the food-plants that we cultivate. I know of no contrivance of man 
that will protect him from insects. 

Mr. Pardee — In New Haven, trees have been protected by zinc troughs, 
filled with oil, around the boles. 

Destroying Trees to Get Bid of Woi^ms. — Andrew S. Fuller stated that 
the worms in Brooklyn were so bad that the city councils were talking of 
cutting down all the trees in that citj', to get rid of the worms. 

Solon Eoblnson — They had better cut down the boys who destroy the 

More than forty years ago, the " canker-worms" were terribly destrnctive, 
for several years, of apple-trees in Connecticut, and attempts Avere made to 
prevent their ravages by making a band of tar, two or tliree inches wide, 
around the bole of the tree. It proved cftectual while the tar was soft ; but, 
unless renewed every day, and sometimes twice a day, the surface dried so 
that the worms crawled over; and I have seen them so thick that they 
crawled into the tar and stuck, and then others went over them, and so oa 
until they formed a bridge, and thus defeated tlieir strong ojiponent. 

Dr. Trimble — ^The lindens of Xew Jersey, in former yeai-s, have been very 
much affected, but tliis year tiiey have not been injured. I believe the in- 
sect has been dctitrovcd by parasites, and I hope it will be in Brooklyn. 1 
hope that no one will think of cutting down trees to get rid of the worms. 

Origin of " Bug-Poicdtr."' — Tlie Secretary stated that Lyon, the great 
bug-powder man, has gone home to Europe, worth an immense sum, and it 
is now published tliat tlie ])owder is made of a common French tield-plant 
of a species of the (;hamomile. 

All the eflective insect powders now offered for sale owe their eflBciency 
to red chamomile. It is sold by some of tlie druggists. Hub it to a fine dust, 
mix it with some cheap divisor, and it is the best insect powder known. 
"When dusted into the cracks and corners of ceilings, etc., out walk the 
cockroaches and all other intruders without fail. Dust the affected plants, 
and you may keep them clear of insects. 

Mons. P'ldiguet states to the Society of Agricnltnre, Paris, that the p[ant 
known as " Whiteflower Margaret" (Chrysanthemuvi cuanthemum), used as 

Sec. 12] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 229 

a decoration, is very destructive to insect life. Tliis plant is not a native of 
tliis country, but is cultivated here, iind can be easily multiplied. 

Disease of the CoJf\e-Trcc. — Dr. Montague stated, at a meeting of tlie 
Society, that a disease has attacked the cofl'ee-trees of Ceylon, similar to the 
oidiuiii of the grapevines. The same disease has been observed in the West 
Indies. Olives and mulberries are attacked ; insects are observed upon 
them, something like the cochineal insect. There is also an exudation of a 
sweet gum that attracts insects. Milk of lime and purin — an extract of 
manure — are used as a preventive. 

Ailanthus, as a food for silk-worms, has been used in France with success. 

Kerosene Oil for Insects. — Wm. G. Le Due, of Hastings, sends us a rem- 
edy for caterpillars and other insects, easily applied. It is kerosene oil. 
lie says : 

"Finding some large nests of caterpillars on my plum-trees, I took a can 
of illuminating oil, as it is called, and applying a few drops (sufficient to 
f aturatc the web of the nest), found that it worked like a charm. It is in- 
stant death to the vermin. Cai-e should be taken not to apply it to the 
leaves of the plant or tree, as they will be scalded at once. I have but little 
doubt that, in the hands of your careful experimentalists, it will prove of 
value. The coarser oils of coal will no doubt be equally efficacious in many 
instances. I may as well mention here, also, that I have found kerosene oW 
a most excellent diluent of printers' ink, which I use in mj flouring-mill for 
stencil-plate marking. It would be a thorough cleanser of tj'pe, though, per- 
haps, not so cheap as potash." 

Coal-Tar for Insects. — Prof. Mapes — "We are very free of destructive tree 
insects, this year (1S60), in New Jersey, but have a tair show of other pests of 
the farm and garden, and wo are obliged to resort to some remedy. We can 
not grow early turnips witlioiit using something to keep the insects off, and 
I am glad that the necessity stimulates invention to assist farmers in the de- 
struction of these pests. I have lately tried one called " attenuated coal- 
tar," and find it effectual. It is likely to be a very valuable aid to fruit- 
growere and gardeners. It is in the fiu'm of powder, and wherever sprinkled 
upon insect-infested plants, tlio insects leave at once. It is coal-tar mixed 
with some substance so as to reiaiu all its odor, and yet remain in the form 
of a dry powder. 

Mr. Lawton — The Black Tartarian is a good sort of cherry, but I prefer 
the Black Eagle ; it is a very hardy variety, and very productive. The En- 
glish Morello is an acid cherry, and the tree very free from insects. We 
have not had a rose-bug with us this year. 

Solon Kobinson stated that, only five miles from Mr. Lawton, the rose- 
bugs infested his cherry-trees by myriads, destroying more than half the 
fruit. Mr. R. inquired of Mr. Lawton what it was that ate his cherry-leaves, 
if it was not rose-bugs, as they were evidently eaten by some insect, and if 
coal-tar or anything else will prevent their ravages, it should be extensively 


Whishjfor Ants. — Win. Davis, of ilarengo, Morrow County, Ohio, otfers 
the following plan for i)rotL"cting fniit-trees from ants, which, lie says, have 
killed many trees for him. It is the same plan pursued in this city to make 
loafers, and then get rid of them — that is, feed them with whisky and make 
them drunk, and then wipe them out. He says : 

" Mix wiiisky, molasses, and water, in equal parts, and fill a tumbler about 
two thirds full, and set it partly in the ground at the foot of the tree infested 
by auts. Wlicn it gets full of the drunkards, scoop them out and kill them." 

We suggest feeding them to fowls. 

Do Worms liain Down? — A person at Angola, Ind., who notices that the 
Club talks about all sorts of miscellaneous matters, wants us, in the absence 
of more important questions, to talk about this : " Do fish, worms, and small 
toads, such as are often seen after a shower, in places where it appears they 
must have fallen with the rain, actually come from the clouds?" 

Dr. Watehbuky replied — They do not ; it is one of the popular erroi-s 
which are so hard to eradicate. 

The Locust Question. — A long discussion ensued upon the locust question 
between Professor Mapes, Professor Nash, Wm. Lawto'n, Wn;. E. Prince, 
Dr. Trimble, and Andrew S. Fuller, about the habits of the seventeen-year 
locust, which appeared in great numbers in the summer of 1800, in the vicin- 
ity of New York. Every schoolboy of any pretension should read all about 
these locusts, and study tlicir natural history. Wherever they appear, try to 
learn their habits, and wliether they do injury to plants, either above or be- 
low the surfiice of the earth. 

Prof. Mapes exhibited the effects upon branches punctured by the females 
to lay their eggs, he still thought without permanent injury to the trees. 

Wm. R. Pkince declared the whole theory of the seventeen-year locusts a 

Prof. Nash thought they return in some localities in thirteen years, and 
inquired if the nature of the soil had any eflect upon their maturity. 

Varieties of the Locust. — ^Anduew S. Fulleu^AVc have maiiy varieties 
of what are called locusts, among which arc the Cicada Sejytemdeeiin, Cicada 
Canicidaris, Cicada liimosct, Cicada Marginata, Cicada Suj>erba, Cicada 
liobertsonia, and perhaps several others. The habits of these are well 
known, and have been for many years. The seventeen-year locust has ap- 
peared regularly every seventeen years for more than a hundred years, as is 
well attested by numerous Mn-iters upon natural history. 

Dr. Tkimblk, of New Jersey, gave a lengthy lecture upon the locust, show- 
ing how the insect deposits its eggs in the limbs of almost every variety of 
trees. A great number of these twigs were distributed among the company, 
to show the curious manner in which these eggs are deposited. 

This peculiar insect appears once in seventeen years ; but the year of its 
appearance differs in every part of the country. In 1S55 it infested south- 
ern Illinois. In 1800, 1817, and 1834 the trees of Delaware and Maryland 
were literally covered by them ; and in 1843 many of the river counties on 

Sec. 12.] 



the Hudson were infested with the CieadaB. Tlie male insect has a pair of 
drums on each side of the head, and, when infesting an orchard or woods, 
the noise is frequently so great that no conversation can be heard in the 
vicinity. The insect appears about the 25th of May, and remains six weeks. 
The female is armed with an ovi_positor, with which she inserts her eggs in 
the smaller portions of limbs of fruit-trees, oaks, chestnuts, etc., always 
selecting new growth, of an eighth to a qxiarter of an inch in diameter. 
Tlie incisions, about twelve in number, are made at an angle of forty to fifty 
degrees, with an egg in each, and sometimes the twig is girdled near the 
eggs, so that when the end of the twig dies it falls to the ground, and the 
eggs ai'e carried in by dews and rains. Miss Morris, of Germantown, Pa., a 
Avell-known entomologist of close observation, claims that she found them 
attached to the roots of pear-trees. 

" While plowing at our place, May 10, these insects were thrown out in 
large quantities. Tlie holes through which they ascend in the soil may be 
traced to a depth of four feet or more. This locust is not to be dreaded, as 
they do but little liarm ; are not known to feed, and the shortening-in of 
limbs by the depositing of their eggs may give a useful hint to those who 
do not understand the benefits of the shortening-in process." 

He also gave an account of a maple-tree in Newark, which appears to 
have a sort of bohun upas eflect upon flies ; they lay dead by tiiousands under 
this tree. * 

Prof. Mapes stated that, in plowing upon his farm near Newark, in 
May, the seventeen-year locusts were turned up in vast quantities. 

Dr. TEnnjLE stated that this insect does not consume vegetation. They 
are within a few inches of the surface, waiting for the right condition of the 
temperature to issue forth. Seventeen years ago these insects came forth on 
the 25th of May, and immediately commenced their musical notes. They 
remain about six weeks above ground, eating nothing. The injury they do 
vegetation is by puncturing the limbs to deposit their eggs. This kills the 
ends of the branches. The apple-tree and elm-trees are favorite trees with 
these seventeen-year locusts. The time of their appearance varies in differ- 
ent localities. This is tlie year for all this vicinity and up the Hudson River. 
My opinion is that the life of the insect is sustained under-ground by attach- 
ing to the roots of plants. Tlie limb selected for puncture is always small. 

Tlie Secretary stated that the size of the limb punctured is not usually over 
an eighth of an inch. 

Mr. Dodge stated tliat the locusts were very plentiful on Long Island five 
years ago, and that he has seen them every year in this city. 

Prof. Mapes thought that these fellows would be a little too much for 
" insect powder." Still, he had received great benefit from one called the 
" Persian Powder." That will enable me to grow early turnips, and it will 
kill caterpillars. 

Mr. Gale — In 1809, in Orange County, the locusts were plentiful enough 
to allow me to gather bushels of them, and the apple-trees were covered. 


The only injury was to the small twigs. Wheat-fields were covered, but not 
inj ured. 

Andrew S. Fuller — In 1855 (lie locusts were very abundant in Illinois, 
and came forth out of heavy clay land, from more than four feet in depth, 
in oak forests. They appeared to prefer the oak-trees. 

The Chairman stated that he had observed their preference for oak in some 
instances, but upon the whole, he thought they had very little care for any 
particular sort of trees. 

Dr. Triiible thought the chestnut was their favorite. I found, yesterday, 
the eggs of the locust are beginning to hatch, and the young insect is as 
perfect in shape as the old ones, of a pure white color, and no larger than 
one of the eggs. 

Habits of Grasshoppers. — A Goliad correspondent of the Colorado (Texas) 
Citizen gives some curious facts in relation to the grasshoppers which have 
recently swarmed in that region. He says : 

"They have an especial fondness for wheat and cotton, but don't take so 
kindly to corn. The only vegetable they spare is the pumpkin. Tlie most 
deadly poisons have had no effect upon them ; fumes of suljihur they rather 
like than otherwise ; musketo-nets they devour greedily ; clothes hung out 
to dry they esteem a rarity ; blankets and gunny-bags they don't appear to 
fancy. Tliey swim the broadest creeks in safety, sun themselves a while, 
and then go on. T!ie whole mass appear to start and move at the same 
time, traveling for an hour or two, devouring everything in their way, and 
then suddenly cease, not moving perhaps for a week, during which time no 
feeding is noticed ; and finally, they carefully avoid the sea-coast." 

Grosshopptr Parasites. — Solon Kobinson — I have a letter from L. B. 
Rice, Middlebury, Vt., inclosing sj^ecimens of grasshoppers, showing a para- 
site that is preying upon them, wliich, it is to be hoped, will help to annihilate 
this pest. This parasite is a small red insect, which attaches itself to the 
grasshopper just under the wing. 

255. Cankf r-Worm Preventives.— The following letter to the autlior, from a 
Kew York city friend, is worthy of attention by all whose trees are eaten by 
worms : 

" Sir : Your recent discussions upon the canker-worm, which is so seriously 
devastating the foliage of the city, stir me up to lay before your readers the 
information which some years of careful observation have enabled me to 
gain respecting this pest of our neighborhood. I do this the more because I 
notice some suggestions in your conversations whicli look to the adoption 
of remedies ; and before any remedy is tried, it is essential that we have 
some assurance that it will be effectual. 

" I was a student in New llavcn at the time when the ravages of the in- 
sect were so severe in that city, and witnessed the e.xtreme desolation which 
the creature produced. The magnificent elms wliich are the glory of that 
beautiful city, stood bare and wintry at the end of June, with every vestige 
of their foliage utterly consumed. I noticed, and have since repeatedly ob- 

Sec. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 233 

served, how perfect a protection is afforded by tlie metallic girdle winch you 
describe. Whether the plan of a Mr. Taylor, spoken of in the papers, is 
an improvement, I am not able to say. 

"The whole merit of the plan, however, consists in its adaptation to the 
habits of the insect. Tiie female — which deposits its eggs upon the body 
and brandies of the tree before the opening of the spring — is wingless, 
apterous, as we say in Entomology ; and being incapable of flying, is 
effecliially arrested by the barrier which is presented by such an open tube 
encircling the tree. The protection is complete, the application is easy, and 
the remedy is effectual. 

" One fact, however, is to be taken into view, which effectually alters the 
case with us. After familiar study of our New York insect, for several 
years past, I am convinced that it is a7i entirely different species, of different 
habits in many respects ; and, above all, different in the one particular which 
gives all its value to the ^e\w Haven remedy ; our species fulli/ possesses the 
power of flight. Its progress, therefore, to the body and limbs of the tree 
for the purpose of depositing its eggs can never be in the least arrested by 
any such measure as your correspondent proposes to adopt. Protection against 
the worm in our city can be obtained only by the same method by which 
New Haven derived hers, viz., the thorough and careful study of the habits 
of our own species of insect. 

" The very positive assurance of your correspondent, Mr. Webb, that ' it 
is a law of nature that all the millers which produce the measuring worm 
have no wings by which they can fly one inch,' is in the main true, though 
perhaps rather strongly stated ; but it applies only to the canker-worm of 
New England. Our species may be seen flying abundantly, botli males and 
females, ascending above the tops of our highest trees, and reaching the 
large branches with absolute ease. After having observed the whole process 
very carefully, I am in a position to speak confidently about it ; and I beg 
to assure your readers that any attempt blindly to imitate the New Haven 
method will only prove a mistaken and unprofitable, because ignorant, 
attempt. In order to ascertain with greater certainty the truth upon this 
point, I transmitted specimens of our New York miller, last suujmer, to Mr. 
E. C. Herrick, the accomplished librarian of Yale College, whose investiga- 
tions of the New Haven canker-worm were published at length, some years 
ago, in the American Journal of Science, smd received from him the assur- 
ance that my impression that the two species were entirely distinct was no 
doubt correct. Mr. II. also concurred with me in thinking that the power 
of flight possessed by the New York moth would require entirely different 
methods for the prevention of its ravages. 

" The one method which ray observation has suggested as effectual, con- 
sists in thoroughly scraping the tree after the eggs of the moth have been 
deposited upon it. The worm with us does not, as in New Haven, go into 
the ground and remain there till tlie winter, but goes through its changes in 
a very brief period. After coming down from the tree, it lays itself up in a 


cocoon, formed of a few thin fibers of silk, in the crevices of the bark of ihj 
trees which it frequents, or upon posts and fences near the tree. There the 
insect may then be found, undergoing its change. After about a fortnight, 
it comes forth in the shape of a white moth, soincwliat less than an inch 
long. At that period our parks and public squares are alive with these 
millers; the grass is studded, the paths covered, the air filled with them. 
Any one may easily satisfy himself of their power of flight by a careful ob- 
servation of them. The antenure, or feelers, projecting from the head, are in' 
the males feathered, or, entomologically, pectinated ; a row of fine fibers, 
like the teeth of a comb, lines each antenna upon one side; the females have 
the antenna plain and straight ; and they may also be distinguished by the 
larger size of the abdomen, which is distended by eggs. No diflerence, 
however, in the power of flight will be observed between the two sexes. On 
coming out from the cocoon the sexes meet, and the impregnated eggs are at 
once laid upon the bark of the tree. They may be seen in patches, varying 
from a dozen to fifty, or even more — minute, green globules, which soon change 
to a dusky gray or brown, scarcely distinguishable in tint from the bark. 
They adhere by a glutinous secretion very firmly to the tree, and remain 
through the year until the warmth of another spring hatches them into life. 

" At any time after the eggs are laid in the beginning of July, and before 
they are hatched in the beginning of the following May, a careful scraping 
of the tree will remove most of them, and so prevent their ravages for the 
next summer. 

" Having frequent occasion to pass through "Washington Parade Ground, 
I have pointed out the eggs upon the bark to the persons intrusted with the 
care of that spot, and the trees have been sometimes scraped in the spring, 
with very good results. This year it was omitted, and the deserted shells 
of the eggs of last year may now be seen on the trunks of the trees so seri- 
ously injured by them this summer. No other method than this afi"ords the 
least security ; but this, if faithfully carried out under any competent super- 
vision, can be made entirely effectual. The eggs remain for nearly a year 
before they are hatched, quite obvious, and tolerably accessible. A couple 
of men would in two or three days clean any one of our parks of this de- 
stroying agent for the next summer ; and careful attention for a few years 
throughout the city would nearly exterminate the pest." 

256. Garden and Field Crop Pests.— The amount of damage done to farmers 
every year by bugs and worms, if it could be exhibited in figures represent- 
ing dollars and cents, would exceed the whole value of the wheat crop, or 
corn crop, or cotton crop, and it would not surprise me if it exceeded the 
value of all of them. If we could give certain preventives of the ravages 
of any one of the pests, we could afford to devote much more space than we 
shall allot to this head. But we will urge farmers to give the subject more 
attention. Buy the best works upon entomology, and devote many a winter 
evening to the careful study of the appearance, character, and habits of all 

Ssc. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 235 

the insects that consume your crops. Give, we pray you, good attention to 
wliat we have.already said and shall say in this section. You can not fail 
to find sometiiing that will repay you well. You certainly will find valuahle 
information in the following paragraph, written by A. S. Ilall, of Maiden, 
Mass., in May, 1860 : 

257. Salt for the Onion Slaggot. — ^Much has been said and written about 
the onion maggot, and I don't know that there is any cure for him ; but I 
will tell you how I treated mine last year, and with good success for once, 
and shall try it again this year, and will tell it to you and the farmers free 
of charge, for I don't think I could get " $60,000" for it if 1 should ask it. 

I sowed last year in my garden, on good soil, three rows, about thirty feet 
long each, to onion seeds. I expected the maggots, and watched diligently 
their progress. When they were first up about one or two inches high, I 
put some strong salt and water on about three feet of one row, to see if it 
would kill the onions, and, in case it did not, perhaps it might kill the mag- 
gots, if they came. The young onions stood it well, and it did not hurt 

After the onions had got about as large as a pail-bail wire, there came 
a spell of warm, wet weather, and my onions began to be affected. I 
watched them several days, and they grew worse, and were fast dying out, 
for about one in every eight or ten were wilting and dying, and I found a 
maggot at the roots of every one that appeared wilting, and sometimes the 
maggot was nearly as large as the little stock itself, and had eaten the bot- 
tom all away, and was making its way up the stem ; at the rate of havoc 
they were making, it appeared there would not be one onion left in the bed 
at the end of four weeks more. I took a pailful of strong pickle from my 
pork-barrel, and, with a watering-pot, put it all on to the three rows, as 
though I were watering them ; the onions never faltered or changed. The 
salt killed all the grass, young clover, and weeds, except purslane, which 
came up later, and the maggots were entirely killed, and I never saw any 
after, though the flies continued to lay their eggs down the side of the little 
plant, and between it and the dirt, just as flies will blow apiece of fresh 
meat ; biit the salt prevented their maturing or hatching, and I raised a 
good crop of fair-sized onions. I think they did not ripen as well as usual, 
but I am not convinced that the salt prevented them, for I have often seen 
patches remain as green as mine were at harvest-time. 

I put on two or three slighter sprinklings of brine after the first, during 
the summer. 

258. Essay on the Cat-Worm,— Head before the Chicago Gardener'' s Soci- 
ety^ August Qth, 1860, It/ Jno. Periam. — I acknowledge my inability to do 
justice to this subject, from not having given it my attention, except in a 
general way. It is, nevertheless, one which interests agriculturists, and par- 
ticularly horticulturists, as much, perhaps, as any other entomological sub- 
ject with which they have to do. The farmers, working on a more extended 
scale, using larger fields, and planting fewer varieties of hoed crops, do not 


notice, nor perhaps suffer as much from the ravages of these families of tho 
Lepidoptera as the horticulturist proper. And the great order of iii.sects to 
which tliis class belongs are, jierhaps, the greatest scourge with which the 
worker in the soilTias to contend. According to Dr. Fitch, the most of this 
species belong to the genus Agrotis, of the family Noctuidffi, or Owlet-moths. 
In England, the insects of this genus arc named Dart-moths, from a peculiar 
spot or streak which many of them have near the base of their fore wings, 
resembling the point of a dart or spear, and he says that niucli the most 
common species of this genus in the State of New York can be nothing else 
tiian the Gothic dart, Agrotis suhgofhica of the British entomologists. They 
are the same which flit about the lights in summer evenings, and are found 
hid by day within crevices and shutters. To show still further the im[)oi-t- 
ance of this class of insects, I will quote from Dr. Harris, showing some of 
tlie families. He has divided them into three sections, called IJutterflies, 
Ilawk-moths, and moths corresponding to the genera Papilio, Sphinx, and 
riiala^na of Linnseus. 

To the first of these orders belong the caterpillars of our common butter- 
flies, many of which are very destructive to vegetation. To the second be- 
longs that class of caterpillars which infect the potato, the grapevine, etc. ; 
the Algerians, or, as they are commonly called, Borers, which latter name, 
however, is equally applicable to the larvaj of insects of many other orders. 
The third great section includes a vast number of insects, sometimes called 
Millers, from their dusty covering, or Night Butterflies, but more frequently 
Moths. Among these are the Cut-worm, the Bee-moth, and all other insects 
belonging to the order Lepidoptera which can not be arranged among the 
butterflies and hawk-moths. 

The most common of the Cut-worm tribe which have come under my ob- 
servation the present season, are the Stri^jed Cut-worm, the lied-headed 
Cut-worm, and the Black "Worm. 

The first is of a dirty whitish color, inclining to brown, with darker 
stripes. Tliis worm works upon the surface of the ground, and may be found 
at any hour of the day, if damp and cloudy. Tiie red-headed cut-worm 
has, as its name implies, a red head, and is of a uniform pale brown color, 
and has this season been particularly destructive; and as it worlvs under 
gionnd, it is death to whatever it attacks. 

The Black, or (as it is sometimes called) Tiger worm may easily be known 
when seen by its dark, dull brown color and black head. It works under 
ground, just below the surface, drawing the stems and leaves after it into 
its hole. 

There arc a number of others, among which are the fiiintly-lined cut- 
worm and the white cut-worm. Of the latter, I have not found a single 
specimen this season, though last j'ear I found several. They are rare, and 
consequently do but little damage. In this day of patent discoveries, any 
one who has plenty of monc}' and ample time to spend may furnish himself 
with a thousandrand-one nostrums which arc said to be effectual extermi- 

Sso. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 237 

natom. Snuff, strong liquid manure, powder, charcoal dust, etc., will pro- 
feet, pi-ovided they can find plenty to eat elsewhere ; if not, they care about 
as much for them as I should about wetting my feet in wading a brook for 
my dinner, if I could not get it by any other means. I am satisfied that 
they might be, in a great measure, exterminated by neighbors joining, dur- 
ing the prevalence of the moths, and setting toi"ches or building fires for 
them to fly into. I saved my tomato crop, the present season, by having my 
men go over the ground in the morning, soon after daylight, and pick up the 
worms by hand. The first morning we secured over two thousand by count, 
and the next morning we gathered over a half peck of them on about an acre 
and a half. After that they began to diminish, and in a few days scarcely 
one could be found. I protect dahlias, and other choice plants, by wrapping 
paper about the stems ; vines, by planting plenty of seed, and killing the 
worms ; vine shields, if set two or three inches below the surface, will gen- 
erally protect. I have never succeeded in trapping them in holes, because, 
if they fall into them, they can dig out, if they can not crawl out. The best 
way to protect against their ravages is to plant plenty of seed, protect the 
birds, and then help them kill the worms. 

The London Gardeners Chronicle says there is a prospect of a total de- 
struction of the grass in the London parks, by the grub of an insect known 
as " Daddy Longlegs," which eats the roots of the turf and totally destroys 
it. " Various remedies have been tried without success." Have any of 
those remedies been a heavy dressing of salt ? If not, it should be tried at 
once. And besides that, we should like to know what this "Daddy Long- 
legs" is. It can not be our cut-worm, that sometimes destroys the turf in 
old meadows ; and certainly it can not be the " Daddy Longlegs" of our ac- 
quaintance, for that, so far as our youthful entomological researches went, 
was a very harmless Daddy, which had very long, slim, crooked legs, attached 
to a round body, the size of a small pea. 

259. Wire Worms.— "A Young. Farmer" wants to know what he shall do 
to get rid of wire worms. He says : 

" An old gentleman not far from me says ; ' Soak the seed over night in 
copperas water, and the wire worm will not trouble it.' Who knows whether 
this is so or not ?" 

Ah! who knows? Does anybody Z,7iow anything? 

Another says soaking seed in a solution of niter will prevent destruction. 
If so, how easily practiced ! Again, who knows ? 

Probably the best remedy against wire worms is not to grow them. Keep 
no old meadows. Break them up. Plow all your sod and stubble land in 
the fall. Either bury your worm seed too deep to get out in time in the 
spring, or else freeze it to death in the winter. There is probably no remedy 
equal to deep plowing in the fall of the year. 

Perhaps we might all learn useful lessons from nature if we would more 
carefully read her printed pages. For instance, one who does try to read 
Buch lessons says : 


"So far as my observation goes, the wire-worm is most troublesome in 
seasons after a mild winter, or when tliere has been a heavy coat of snow on 
lh(? ground during winter, thus preventing the frost jjenetrating the eartii to 
any considerable depth. Consequently, the worms remain near the surface, 
and are not frozen to death or driven so far below the surface that they must 
starve before they can return. Two successive crops of buckwheat will 
generally rid any soil of wire-worms." 

And we add, so will ten bushels of salt per acre, and every worm that is 
killed by it will fertilize a whole handful of grass. Salt, alone, is an e.xcel- 
lent manure ; salt and lime still better, prepared according to the formula 
under the head of " salt and lime mixture." Thirty bushels of lime, in 
powder, sown broadcast, will destroy the worms in many a field that has been 
almost barren, and make it productive of fine crops of wheat, clover, corn. 

" How to get rid of the worms," is one of the most important questions 
that a farmer can ask, and the want of a knowledge how, is not confined to 
voung farmers. Hence, all we say upon the subject is worth treasuring up 
in the great store-house of knowledge, the human mind. 

260. Worm-KillerSi — A reliable South Carolina acquaintance, Col. A. G. 
Summer, of Pomaria, declares that China berries applied like manure to soil 
will expel all grubs and worms. "China trees" are as common all over the 
South as locust or ailanthus here, and they are very fruitful, the berries resera- 
hling small cherries in size, and pulp surrounding a hard seed. Only a few years 
ago, the fact v»'as discovered, rather accidentally, that the wood of this tree 
would bear a high polish, and that furniture made of it was as strong and 
handsome as that of some of our most expensive imported woods, and that 
its natural pleasant odor, like that of cedar or camphor wood, remains, and 
is a great preventive of moths. The botanical name of the " China tree" is 
Mdia azedaraeh', sometimes called the great Indian lilac. It is a hot- 
house shrub here ; at Charleston, it grows fifty feet high, and is a beautiful 
shade-tree, its greatest objection being its abundance of berries falling upon 
the ground, notwithstanding which it is a great fixvorite in all the most 
Southern States, and its berries, if of any value, could be had here at a small 

261. Tobacco-WormSi — These destructive pests of the tobacco-planter, it 
is well known, can be subdued with a flock of turkeys better than in any 
other way. As both turkeys and worms are large, the operation can be seen 
and appreciated ; yet we have no doubt that a flock of wrens do just as 
much toward the destruction of some other family of worms, and really 
eflect as much good to the farmer. And so of every other class of birds. 
Cultivators of other crops ought to take lessons from the tobacco-growers. 
The first glut of worms, in July, is easily subdued by the turkeys, while 
tobacco is small, and the worms are doing but little damage. The trouble 
comes in August, but the destruction of the worms a month sooner may save 
the crop. 

Mr. Wm. Sheppard, of Ann Arundel Co., Md., has been very successful 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 239 

iu jjoisoning the moth that produces the tobacco-worm, by the use of cobalt 
— a quarter of a pound to a half pint of water. This is made quite sweet 
witii refined sugar, and the mixture is put into a small bottle, with a quill in 
the cork, and two or three drops through the quill deposited in the blossom 
of the Jamestown weed, or in the blossom of the tobacco-plants. The horn- 
blower will suck the jjoison till he dies. 

The trumpet blossoms of the Jamestown weed are favorite resorts of the 
moth, and arc gathered fresh, and fastened to the tobacco plants, or upon sticks 
set through the field. It may be worth while to grow the weed on purpose 
for traps. 

The cobalt is the same black powder often sold by druggists as "fly 
poison." It should be reduced in a mortar to a fine powder before using. 
It is worth while to try it for other insects, placing it upon plates in their 

Mr. Sheppard thinks any planter may protect himself against the tobacco- 
worm with this poison. 

John G. Bergen, of Long Island, stated to us, in the spring of 1860, that 
he had been obliged to send all his laborers into his tomaio-field to kill 
worms that are destroying the plants and young fruit. He thinks it identical 
with the tobacco-worm, having grown tobacco a few years ago and been 
troubled with the same kind of M-ornis. One of Mr. B.'s neighbors told us 
afterward that the worms were not only very troublesome on the tomato- 
vines, but were eating the potato-vines ravenously. 

Tlie New Haven Courier said the potato-vines in that State were being 
eaten by worms, so as to destroy the prospect of a crop, and these worms, 
we judge, are the same kind as those on Long Island. 

In this city, worms have been for years destroying the trees ; none but 
the ailanthus escapes them. 

Is it not worth while to try to poison the insects while on the wing, in the 
way indicated above, or some other way ? 

The Jamestown weed mentioned above, we take to be the same weed that 
grows along many New England waysides, called " Jimson weed," or " stink- 
weed." It is the Datura stramonium. 

262. Bug Remedies. — Here is a good one ! "We haven't a doubt as to its 
efficacy — not one ! try it. A correspondent says : " I have seen many plans 
recommended for removing and keeping bugs and other insects from vines, 
and among them, snuff, soap, mustard, etc., all or any of which articles 
must, in my opinion, more or less injure the plant. I have found this the 
case from experience ; and I have also found, by the same means, that the 
best preparation for this purpose is a cold and very strong decoction made 
with water and manure from the henroost and cow-yard, and applied morn- 
ing and evening. The insects do not relish this preparation, while the plants 
to which it is applied do." 

Another one sa^-s : " I preserved my vines last year from the ravages of 
the striped bugs by placing little wads of cotton, saturated with spirits of 


turpentine among the vines ne;ir the roots, using care to have them not touch 
the vines. The turpentine should be renewed from to time." 

Another says: "These pests of the vines may be easily got rid of by 
building a fire of light wood that will blaze freely in the evening. All 
insects fly into a blaze, and are thus destroyed in myriads." 

It is recommended by J. M. Dlmond, of Eaton Co., Mich., to plant in the 
s:imG hill with summer squashes or melons, etc., some seeds of the winter 
scpiash, such as have the largest succulent leaves. He says the bugs will not 
molest the smaller vines under such circumstances. When danger from 
bugs has ceased, then the plants can be removed. 

Another one gives the following as a sure specific for bugs on vines: 
" Having seen by your paper that many truckers in your section are anxious 
to ascertain a simple and sure remedy to destroy bugs on squashes, cucum- 
bers, and the like, I will give you one which is almost a specific, and within 
the reach of every one, especially those living on the sea-board. 

" Procure fresh fish — of any kind whatever, the commonest and cheapest 
just as good — a sufficient quantity according to circumstances, say one peck 
to a barrel of water. Let them stand therein a day or two, in order to com- 
mence decomposition and emit their 7iecessarily unpleasant odor; then 
dampen the leaves with the liquid. 

" In addition to driving away the bugs, your plants will become green and 
healthy, and soon grow beyond the reach of any future swarm of depreda- 
tors. It may be necessary to use the water two or three times in the course 
of two weeks, but remember that every application is equivalent to a dress- 
ing of manure, which will amply repay for the labor, which is very trifling. 
Fresh fisli offal is of equal value with the fish."' 

263. Potato Bugs* — It is quite as useful to i-eport failure as success in 
farming. AVe are therefore obliged to Horatio J. Cox, of Zanesville, Ohio, 
for telling us that he tried powdered lime, and also ashes, sifted upon his 
potato vines to prevent them from being eaten by the potato bugs, but ho 
found them at work as usual, with their backs white with lime. His con- 
clusion, therefore, is, that that is no remedy against the depredations of these 
pests. He remarks that " there arc two kinds working in concert, but, from 
my observation, keeping up separate breeds — the black shell and the striped 
shell ; the latter is more active than the other, and not quite so plump." 

A French paper gives an opinion that nearly all the diseases of plants, 
including potato-rot, are occasioned by insects. The insects, in many cases, 
are microscopic. The little aucaris, for instance, although so very minute, 
is a great destroyer. It causes little scabby pustules upon fruits, particularly 
fine pears. 

Whether the potato bug always found on the diseased vines is the cause 
or eflfect of the disease, is a mooted question. 

Although Mr. Cox did not stop tlieir depredations, we still recommend 
liberal dressings of ashes and plaster, and if these do not kill the bugs, they 
will give the vines a vigorous growth. So with lime and salt. 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 241 

204. Protection of Tlirnips. — Tlie following, from an English newspaper, is 
equally wortliy of attentiou in America : 

"In the list of patents lor wliich provisional protection has been taken 
out is a machine of a novel and somewliat curious character. The speciiica- 
tion, as taken from the list, describes tlie machine as a 'blast drill,' the 
object of which is to protect tiie turnip crop from the ravages of the fly and 
the slug, and its other numerous enemies, and secure, as far as human inge- 
nuity can accomplish it, this most valuable of all bulbous I'oots. The com- 
mon practice of protecting the turnip from the fly is by dusting the row with 
lime during the night and while the dew is upon the plant. Tliis operation 
is difhcult, and imperfecily performed. Besides the slow process of doing 
tliis by liand, the ditficulty of dusting the under side of the plant as well as 
the top side ofi'ers an insuperable objection to tliis mode of ajtplying lime, 
soot, or any otlicr compost, to the young turnip-plant. This difficulty is now 
overcome, and the lime (a mixture of one sixth of soot with it is recom- 
mended) is thrown, by means of a l)last fan, upon every part of the plant, 
both on the upjjer and under side. The fan is put in niotion by tlie travel- 
ing wheels of the drill, and receives its velocity in the usual manner by 
gearing wheels. Tlie blast tlius created by the fan is brought to bear upon 
tlie plant, which, yielding to its action, bends fiom the current, and as it 
acts upon a falling stream of lime or other composition, the plant becomes 
completely covered with the jjowder. But this is not the only object the blast 
drill will accomplish. The fly, disturbed by a simple contrivance, liops 
away, but is at that moment caught by a current of air entering the blast 
fan and instantly destroyed, and thrown out again with violence from tlie 
vortex into wliich it had been drawn. This operation is simple, and the pro- 
cess of annihilation is similar to that of a mouse or rat going down a thrash- 
ing-machine. The fly and the lime are so completely mixed and incorpo- 
rated that the mischievous yet delicate insects are destroyed by the atmo- 
spheric pressure thrown upon them, and the plant is also secured, by the 
dusting of compost, from all future attacks of the enemy. All farmers can 
not fail to know something about the insect which does so much annual mis- 
chief to the turnip crops. Sometimes a fallow, -which in tillage and labor 
has cost £5 or £6 an acre in preparing it for a crop of Swedes, has had all 
the labor and capital expended made vain by the fly. Can this evil be i-em- 
edic-d i It seems possible ; and if this invention of a blast drill should be the 
means of securing a turnip crop, or even improving it, by the application of 
a top-dressing of soot or guano, or any other soluble manure, a great good 
has been accomplished, not to farmers only, but to the community at large."' 

2Go. Pea-Weevil — How Destroyed. — One of the greatest pests that growers 
of peas have to contend with is the pea-weevil, Bruchus pisi, which some- 
times attacks every pod, and leaves an egg to liatch into a disgusting insect 
in every pea, so that, if intended for food, when dry, we shall find a modi- 
cum of meat ready mixed in our pea-soup. If intended for seed, when we 
are ready to plant in the spring, we find the life of our peas eaten out. 


Although several birds, of whicli the crow and Baltimore oriole aic the chief, 
feed upon the pea-weevil, they are very fiir from destroying it, and the evil 
is annually increasing. IIow can this insect he destroyed, is a question 
worth solving. We think it can be, if farmers and gardeners would make a 
united cflbrt, totally annihilated from the country. The remedy is very 
simple. It is to steam all the seed peas. This can be done in a small way 
in families by taking the seed, so soon as gathered, shelled, and dried, and 
placing it iu a cullender, covered vith a cloth or plate, and placed over a 
kettle of boiling water until the steam is thoroughly passed through the peas, 
■when they are to be dried in the sun and put away in paper bags. Upon a 
large scale, the peas may be steamed in bags or barrels, by inserting a steam- 
pipe from a boiler at so low a pressure that it will not cook the peas, but it 
will the pupae of the pea-weevil. Let it be remembered that steam, prop- 
erly applied, will totally eradicate the pea-weevil from the land And if 
from peas, why not from wheat, corn, and rice, easier and better than by 
kiln-drying ? It would be very easy to dry the steamed grain. Passing it 
through a fanning-miil would probably be sufficient; or pouring it out of a 
basket, where it would fall fifteen or twenty feet through the air. 

266. Preserving InsectSi — Insect collectors will find the following method 
of killing the insects they wish to preserve one of the most convenient of 
any they have ever tried. Dissolve cyanide of potassa in M-ater to satura- 
tion, and keep it tightly corked in a small vial, and it will always remain 
in good order for use. When you catch a fly, moth, insect of any kind, 
or a beautiful butterfly that would be injured in fluttering, dip a needle- 
poiut in the solution, and prick your captive just under the wing, and 
see how quick and calmly they will lie down and die. Some large or 
hard-to-kill insects may require more than one stab to make them die- peace- 
ably. This solution is used by scientific entomologists in making their 

267. Household InsectSi — UalVs Medical Jownal states that household 
vermin may be got rid of as follows : Half an ounce of soap boiled in a pint 
of water, and put on with a brush while boiling hot, infallibly destroys the 
bugs and their eggs. Flies are driven out of a room by hanging up a bunch 
of common plantain (fleawort) after it has been dipped in milk. Kats and 
mice speedily disappear by mixing equal quantities of strong cheese and 
powdered squills. They devour this mixture with greediness, while it is in- 
nocent to man. When it is remembered how many persons have lost their 
lives by swallowing mixtures of strychnine, etc., it becomes a marter of hu- 
manity 1o publish these items. 

^]ni Si-'untific Airiivkan says: " Common red wafers scattered abont the 
haunts of cockroaches will often drive away if not destroy them." These 
wafers, like candies, are (olored red by oxyd of lead, a most deadly poison ; 
and 60 is the acetate of lead, or sugar of lead, as it is sometimes called, on 
visiting cards, which, being a little sweetish, l>as been known to destroy 
young children, to whom they were handed to be amused M-ith. Fashion 

Sec. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 243 

for once acts sensibly in discarding glazed cards, using instead Bristol board, 
more pliant, less cumbersome, and really more delicate. 

Wc have found that bugs can not stand hot alum water. Take two pounds 
of alum, bruise and reduce nearly to powder, and dissolve in three quarts 
of boiling water, letting it lemain in a warm place till the alum is dissolved. 
Tlie alum M'atcr is to be applied hot, by means of a brush, to every joint and 
crevice. Brush the crevices in the floor of the skirting-board, if they arc 
suspected places. "Whitewash the ceiling, put in plenty of alum, and there 
Mill be an end to their dropping from thence. 

To kill moths in carpets, spread a wet cloth on the carpet, and iron witli a 
liot flat-iron round the edges and places where you suspect them to be. Do 
this a few times in the course of the summer, and you will save your carpet 
from the moths. 

SiIk-tco)-j)is have been induced to work in France by electricity. M. 
Sauvageon reports to the Academy his experience in the matter. Finding 
tlie little things torpid and unwilling to work, the idea struck him to stir 
tlieni up by electricity. The results, as he gives them, are really marvelous. 
He took fifty-three worms at random from among thousands belonging to a 
neighbor, put them every day on a sheet-iron plate, through which a current 
of electricity was passed, kept them each time as long as they could stand it, 
and now has fiftj^-three beautiful cocoons, an amount which his neighbors 
will not obtain, to all appearances, from several thousand ungalvanized 
worms. If these results may be relied on, he has made a very valuable 

208. Moth ProtcctorSt — Camjyhor is one of the most useful moth protectors 
about the household. A trunk full of furs, with an ounce of cam])hor gum 
scattered through tliem, will be safe from moths. Furs or woolens packed 
in a chest made of camphor-wood or cedar will generally be safe. Some 
housewives pack in a linen sheet, or bag of close texture. Others use to- 
bacco. Others keep their furs or woolens in drawers or trunks where they 
will be often exposed to the light, and where they can frequently take them 
out to the air and sun, and beat them, which will eflfectually prevent the 
ravages of the moth. A very good preventive is to carefully kill the miller 
that makes the worm which is so destructive to woolens and furs. It is not 
a hard matter to do so in a house not already overrun with them. They 
may be attracted to a light blaze ; and they may be caught in plates with a 
little s\veetened water and vinegar ; or a piece of an old blanket may be 
used as a trap ; or they all may be caught and destroyed by hand, by de- 
voting half an hour to the work each evening, in the proper season. 

269. Anls in the HousCi— These troublesome pests may be overcome by 
various remedies. Perhaps one of the best things for the red ants is to mix 
a few grains of corrosive sublimate in a spoonful of lard, with a little sugar, 
and then draw rough strings of cotton or woolen yarn through the mixture, 
and lay them in the cracks where the ants harbor, or in the corners of closet 
shelves. They may also be poisoned with cobalt, pulverized fine and mixed 


with something sweet that they like to feed upon. Tliese and otlier insects 
can be poisoned by arsenic. Tliey may be kcjit from tlie sngar-bowl by 
setting it in a plate covered with powdered chalk. The whisky remedy 
recolnmended in No. 254, to protect trees from ants, may be adopted in the 
house. The bug-powder mentioned in the same number, made of red chamo- 
mile, can also be used in the house for ants and other pests. For the large 
black ant, the best vehicle for poison is old cheese. Dip a piece of it in a 
poisonous solution, or moisten it if dry, and dust it with corrosive sublimate 
or arsenic. 

Be very careful, in the use of poisons, not to get them mixed with food. 
There is no more danger, with proper care, than there is in keeping gun- 
powder in the house. 

270. Insects Bene flcial to Farmers. — It is not to be inferred that because an 
animal is called an insect, it is pestiferous. The contrary should be taught 
in all schools, as well as in home lessons. The false idea is prevalent tliat 
all sorts of insects, bees excepted, are mischievous, hurtful, and hateful ; so 
that evei'Y worm, bug, fly, moth, miller, or little crawling, creeping, flying 
thing is looked upon by almost everj' one witli a feeling of desire to crush 
it. A contrary feeling must be cultivated. Children must be taught to dis- 
criminate between good and evil insects, as well as between good and evil 
deeds. A cloud of moths might be seen hovering around the wheat, and 
the farmer, under the supposition that they had come to destroy the grain, 
might destroy them, and afterward find that he had killed his best friends — 
the parasites of the wheat destructors. Before we declare a war of annihila- 
tion, as many have against the birds, ujwn any class of animals, let us first 
inquire which are and which are not noxious. "We will here briefly point 
out a few. 

The common angle-worm, instead of being detrimental to the farmer, is 
actually a co-laborer, and often a better one than the biped owner of the soil. 
A scientific writer on Zoology says : 

"The burrowing of earth-worms is a process exceedingly useful to the 
gardener and agriculturist ; and these animals are far more useful to man in 
this way, than they arc injurious by destroying vegetables. Tliey give a 
kind of under tillage to the land, performing the same below the ground 
that the spade docs above for the garden, and the plow for arable land, 
loosening the earth so as to render it jiermeable to air and water. It has 
lately been shown that they will even add to the depth of soil ; covering 
barren tracts with a layer of productive mold. Tiius, in fields that have been 
overspread with lime, burnt marl, or cinders, these sidjstanccs are in time 
covered with finely divided soil, well adapted to the support of vegetation. 

"That this result — which is most commonly attributed by farmers to the 
' working down' of the material in (picstion — is really due to the action of 
the earth-worm, appears from the fact that in the soil thus formed, large 
numbers of ' worm-casts' niay be distinguished. These are produced by the 
digestive process of the worms, which take into their intestinal canal a large 

Seo. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 245 

quantity of the soil through wliich they burrow, extract from it a great part of 
(lie decaying vegetable matter it may contain, and eject the rest in a finely 
divided state. In this manner a field manured with marl has become 
covered, in the course of 80 years, with a bed of earth averaging 13 inches 
in thickness." 

White, in his " Natural History of Selborne," says : 

'' Worms seem to be great promoters of vegetation, which would proceed 
but slowly without them, by boring, perforating, and loosening the soil and 
rendering it pervious to rains and fibers of plants, by drawing straws and 
stalks of leaves and twigs into it, and most of all, by throwing up such 
infinite numbers of lumps of earth, called worm-casts, which, being their 
excrement, is a fine manure for grain and grass." 

It is a part of the system of comminution spoken of under another head ; 
and if all the earth could be eaten by worms, it would serve as a manure for 
crops, simply because it had been pulverized, and thereby fitted for their 

Some time since, in company with several gentlemen, we listened to a 
conversation with reference to the value of the earth-worm, one gentleman 
claiming that they were a nuisance in the garden, and others asserting that 
tliey were a great blessing, as mole drainers, and always an index of the 
fertility of the soil. Here is a paragraph from the EncydojpcRdia Britan- 
nicii, right to the point : 

" The common earth-worm, though apt to be despised and trodden on, is 
really a useful creature in its way. Mr. Knapp describes it as the natural 
manurer of the soil, consuming on the surface the softer part of decayed 
vegetable matter, and conveying downward the more woody fibers, which 
there molder and fertilize." 

271. Plant-Lice Destroyers. — ^There is an ichneumon fly, a very small 
blackish insect with yellowish legs and abdomen, not quite the twentieth of 
an inch long, which destroys myriads of aphides. The female lays an egg in 
each louse, and the grub from that devours its nest, leaving only the skin 
attached to the leaf, serving for a shelter for the larva in its pupa state. The 
fly comes out of a hole in the louse's back, and repeats the ojieration. 
Careful examination will disclose a great many of these perforated empty 
aphis skins upon plants that would be entirely destroyed hy a long-continued 
multiplication of their consumers, but for this little parasite. 

The Syrphus is the name of another destroyer of the aphis that abounds 
upon cotton-plants. This is not a parasite ; the eggs being laid on the leaf 
among the aphis, the maggot, wliich is, when full grown, about one fifth of 
an inch long, makes its food of the lice. Tlie pupa is formed on the leaf, in 
a case made by the worm of a glutinous secretion— the juices it has sucked 
out of the lice it fed upon. The fly is seven tenths of an inch across the 
wings, which are double ; the body appearing like a diminutive wasp, banded 
witli brown, black, and j-ellow. It hovers much on the wing, without much 
motion, unless disturbed, when it shows its power of swift flight. This 


louse destroyer does not confine its operations to the aphis of cotton-plants, 
tiiough it seems to prefer them. It is of immense service to Southern 

The Lady-linl (Coccinella) is another valuable assistant to the cotton- 
planter, in particular. "Where the lice most abound, there will be found the 
lady-bird doing its work. Yet there are numerous planters who, seeing this 
insect hovei'ing over the cotton, suppose it the parent of the pest they stand 
60 much in fear of, and direct the negroes to destroy all they can. It was a 
negro who first discovered that the worms hatched from their eggs, which 
are deposited on the leaf near the aphis, actually consume them, instead of 
the cotton-plant. The worms are a quarter of an inch long, bluish-black, 
and voracious as an alligator, to which they bear some slight resemblance. 
They seize and cat the lice alive, until all upon tlie leaf are consumed, when 
the grub fastens itself by the tail to the leaf to await its change. The insect 
while on the wing is also a louse-eater. A disagreeable odor emitted by tins 
insect will serve to identify it. , 

The larva of the Jace-wwgfl)j is another cotton-aphis cater. These wonns 
are hatched from filaments of eggs, which the fly attaches to the under 
side of the leaf near an aphis colony. This larva is not quite one fifth of an 
inch long. It may be known by the way it holds by the tail, while sti-eteh- 
ing out full length looking for its favorite food. It spins a little cocoon, out 
of which, in due time, comes a bright green fly, with brilliant eyes, and 
four transparent greenish wings, delicately netted like fine lace — hence the 
name. This insect also belongs to the fetid-odor family. 

272. Other Insect Destroyers. — The Carolina tlgcr-heetle is a beantiful insect, 
seven tenths of an inch long, of metallic blue, violet, and green color, and 
savage propensities toward all other insects. 

The Ilarpalus is another insect-consuming beetle, with very strong 
hooked jaws adapted to a predatory Hfe. If it can not find living food, it 
will consume dead, putrescent substances. 

The Mantis, an insect known in Maryland as the " rear horse," is a 
voracious consumer of insects. In fact, it is said that they will sometimes 
consume one another. Tlie largest are over two inches in length, of a very 
awkward-looking form. The eggs attached to a limb look like an excres- 
cence, and are often attacked by an ichneumon fly, as a place of deposit for 
its eggs. Tlie young mantis conies out in June, at first without wings, but 
with a strong appetite for aphides and other insects. It stands upon four hind 
legs, with body elevated and forward feet closed, and head constantly 
moving. It walks, or jumps, when alarmed, but is capable of domestication 
so as to come and take food out of the hand, and is perfectly harmless cxce])t 
to things obnoxious to man, and for that it should be preserved. Its color 
is brownish gray to light green, and its form will be remembered from a 
picture of it, or after being once seen or known. 

The licduvius novenarius measures an inch and a quarter in length, and 
destroys multitudes of insects in all their stages of transformation. The 

Sko. 12.] ENTOMOLOGICAL. 247 

eggs deposited in autunm hatch in May or June; the young worms are 
marked with a bh\ck head and thorax, and bi-ight red abdomen, and black 
spots on the back. They afterward appear of a grayish color, with rudi- 
ments of wings, which at length enable them to fly with strength. It 
approaches its prey cautiously, and makes a dart, and pierces it to death, and 
then Bucks out the substance. It cats the common tree-caterpillar voraciously, 
and it sometimes wounds a person handling it incautiously with its sharp 

There are numerous other parasites of noxious insects, and insects like 
those named, which prey upon others, which are really beneficial to the 
farmer, as are many quadrupeds and other animals that are natural insect- 
eaters, such as toads, moles, skunks, etc. The most important of all, perhaps, 
we mention in the next jiaragraph. 

273. The Wheat niidge Parasite. — The only hope of relief from the blasting 
eflects of the wheat-midge (323), with those who have thought upon the sub- 
ject, has been a parasite that would work its destruction. That hope, we 
trust, is about to be realized. A correspondent of the Canadian Agricul- 
turist, writing to that paper in the autumn of 1860, says : 

"I am rejoiced that this week I can announce the arrival of a deadly 
enemy to the wheat midge or fly. In the neighborhood of Sparta, township 
of Yarmouth, the farmers have discovered some species of ichneumons which 
deposit their eggs on the larva. One of these is very small, black, and 
shining ; the other is also black, with red feet and a blunt tail. These are 
often mistaken for the wheat-fly ; but as it has only two wings, and they 
have four, the distinction is obvious. To observe the proceedings of the 
ichneumons, place a number of the maggots or larvre of the wheat-fly on a 
sheet of paper, apd set a female ichneumon in the midst of them ; she soon 
pounces upon her victim, and, intensely vibrating her antennfe, bending her- 
self obliquely, plunges her ovipositor into the body of the larva, depositing 
in it a single egg. She will then pass to the second, and so on, depositing a 
single egg in each. You will observe the maggot writhing in seeming 
agony, when sometimes the fly stings them three times. These ichneumons 
appear in myriads on the outside of the ear, but, as if impatient of bright 
light, sheltering themselves from the sun's rays among the husks." 

The same thing has been noticed in other sections ; and Dr. Fitch, the 
entomologist of the New York State Agricultural Society, is so much en- 
couraged that a remedy has come at last, that he writes confidently, in 
iSTovember of that year: "The days of the wheat-midge pest are numbered. 
I fully believe that farmers may again sow wheat without fear of its destruc- 
tion by the Ceddomyia trUici^'' 



[Chap. II. 


'olcs. — Wo liavo for four years (1S59-1862) occu- 
/^ pied our little farm in AVestchestor County — 
one of the many sadly-abused pieces of land,_ 
some of that in mowing, not planted for thirty 
years or more — and in this land we found the moles 
as thick as we ever saw them anywhere in our life, 
and therefore have a right to speak of them from expe- 
rience. In some respects we have sufiercd severely by 
them. Tliey have killed many choice things that we 
have planted, including several valuable grapevines ; but 
we are not yet willing to destroy the moles. We do not 
look upon them as pests, although they have pestered us. 
They xmdermine the plants, but do not eat them What 
for? It is not for sport, nor merely accidental in boring 
their subterranean galleries. It is in pursuit of food. And as that food consists 
of insects noxious to the farmer, this paragraph upon moles comes in coui-se 
very well after the section devoted to insects. In fact, we believe that tlie 
mole is one of man's best friends, and that it never occupies land that is not 
already so preoccupied with destructive worms as to render it unfit for culli- 
vation. So impressed with this belief are some European people — all 
Prussia, we believe — that they have enacted laws to prohibit the killing of 
moles. As with the crow, opinions vary in this country whether the mole is 
beneficial or injurious to farmers. For our own part, we must say that we 
never see an account of a "new mole-trap" without Avishing the inventor 
might get his own fingers caught in it. It is a great pity that farmers can 
not learn that moles are one of the good things that Providence has bestowed 
upon them — that they do not destro}^ seeds and plants, but the insects that 
are great pests to the farm and garden. In this opinion we shall continue 
until better informed upon this question. In the mean time we give some 
opinions of others. Tiie following is the sketch of a report of a convcrsafion 
at the New York Farmers' Club about moles : 

Solon Hobinson read a letter upon the subject of moles, which elicited a 
lengthy discussion. Tlie following portion of the letter we print : 

" This animal, as you probably know, has a very small apology for eyes, 
which can not be discovered till the skin is removed, and it can not be ascer- 
tained that they are of any practical use. His sense of hearing and of smell 
is very acute, and he is enabled to elude observation, and to avoid anything 
unusual that may be placed in his track. No device, however, with whicli 
I am acquainted will force him to abandon a well-cultivated track, abound- 
ing with earth-worms, whicli are his chief attraction. He will pass from hill 


to hill, severing the corn, melon, or other seeds from the tender plant, thus 
greatly impeding its progress, and in many instances wholly destroying it. 
In a scarcity of earth-worms he will prey upon beets, potatoes, and other 
roots with voracity ; still the damage he thus does is of little account com- 
pared with that produced by his relentless plowing or rooting. Where 
the soil is fertile and not too wet, this intruder will be found undermining all 
vegetation, and is a source of discomfort to the agriculturist, which must be 
realized to be appreciated. 

" Failures in field and garden, which are often attributed to drouth or in- 
sects, are many times produced in a great measure by moles. At morning, 
noon, and evening the mole goes forth on his depredations, making the most 
rapid movements (for an underground performance), and in less than twenty 
minutes finishes his repast, and returns again to his hiding-place deep in the 
earth, beyond the reach of all intruders. 

'• The Yankee mole is too shrewd for the English trap, or, indeed, for any, 
with a single exception. I have examined several traps, beautiful in theory, 
but they are splendid practical failures." 

Wm. S. Carpenter — I am satisfied about the injury of moles to the farmer^ 
being much more than all liis benefit in eating worms. I had a bed of 
tulips destroyed by moles. I traced them by their paths from root to root. 

Prof. Mapes — I have tried careful experiments with moles in confinement, 
and have never succeeded in getting them to eat any kind of vegetable 

Mr. Moody, of New Jersey — 1 have found that moles do cut off the stems 
of thorns in my hedge. I can not say that they eat thorns. I am satisfied, 
too, that they will eat potatoes. 

Pruf Mapes — I find that potatoes are eaten in the vicinity of moles, but I 
am satisfied that they are eaten by grubs that the moles feed upon. 

Dr. Trimble— The potato is eaten by the grub of the cockchafer, and not 
by the mole. 

Mr. Fuller — I have known moles to gnaw potatoes, but not for food. 

The Chairman, Egbert L. Pell, made the following remarks upon this 
subject : 

Ifolc-U/Ils.— In rich alluvial soils, mole-hills are thrown up in immense 
numbers, because such soils usually abound with the food that these subter- 
raneous creatures seek for. They destroy the roots of grass immediately 
contiguous to their mounds, besides often impeding the free action of tho 
scythe, for these reasons. Some think it well to exterminate them ; still they 
no doubt do a vast deal of good by destroying obnoxious worms and grubs. 

In the spring of the year it is an easy matter to spread out these mounds 
over the surrounding ground, as they are dry and powdery, and act to a 
certain extent as an enriching top-dressing. 

The mole can not bear access to the atmosphere, being wholly subterra- 
neous by nature ; they never drink, but live entirely upon worms, insects, 
and the roots of grass, and are never foundHn gravelly or clay soils. 


They breed in April and May, and generally ])roduce four at a birth. 
Tlie tunnels that tliej' make are invariably parallel to the surtace of the 
ground, and about six inches deep, unless they become alarmed, when tlay 
inimediately sink to the deptli of fourteen inches, rarely deeper. They have 
cities under ground, wliicli consist of houses, or nests, where tliey feed and 
nurse their young ; communicaiing with these are wider and more frequented 
streets, made by tiie perpetual journeys of the female and male parents, us 
well as many other less frequented streets, with diverging branches, whicli 
they extend daily to collect food for theniselves and Ainiilies. 

Moles arc exceedingly active in April and May, during the pairing 
season, when the tunnels become very numerous, for the purpose of meeting 
each other. I do not believe tliat they are blind, from the fact that I have 
never observed that the mole-hills increase except in the day-time, showing 
that they do not work by night, whicli they would probably do if deprived 
of sight. They commence very early in the morning, when you may oiten 
see the mold or grass moving over them ; you may then readily cut olf 
their retreat by thrusting in the ground a spade directly behind thcjn, when 
they may be dug out very easily and killed by the attendant terrier. By 
placing your car on a newly-raised hill you may hear tliem scratching at a 
considerable distance, and thus be able to find them. You may always dis- 
cover the locality of their young by observing the hills, which are larger 
and the color difl'erent, a portion of the subsoil being thrown upon top. If 
you desire to set traps in their tumiels, it will be necessary to discover which 
are the frequented streets and which the by-roads. 

This may be accomplislicd by pressing the foot lightly on the hill, and if 
the mole passes that way he will nearly obliterate the mark. You may then 
set a subterranean trap, and he will be caught. These may be made from a 
piece of wood, in a hollow, semi-cylinder form, with grooved rings at each 
end, in which are placed the nooses of horse-hair, one at each end, fastened 
\>y a peg in the center, and stretched above-ground by a bent stick ; wb.en 
the mole has passed through one of the nooses, and removed the central jieg, 
the bent stick, by its elasticity, rises and strangles the animal. Tlie structure 
of this quadruped adapts it admirably to the underground life that it leads. 
Its head is very long, conical in shape, and tapers to the snout, M'hich is 
much strengthened by a bone, gristle, and very powerful muscles. The 
body is cylindrical, very thick on the back of the head, from which it dimin- 
ishes to the tail. It does not appear to have any neck, but where it should 
be, there is a mass of muscles, all of which appear to act upon the fore legs 
and head. These are the instruments with which he excavates the ground ; 
they are harder, shorter, and stronger, in proportion to the size of the animal, 
than in any other of the niammiferous class. I have never destroyed one of 
these little animals, because I consider the damage they do to a few roots of 
grass is entirely counterbalanced by their immense destruction of wire- worms, 
slugs, etc., besides aerifying, disintegrating, and lightening the soil, and thus 
fitting it admirably for the purposes of top-dressing. 

Sko. 13.] 



I never permit the common crow to be destroyed, because he preserves 
my corn-fields from numerous enemies, keeps off liawks, destroys shio-s, 
snails, grubs, and eats carrion. Nor tlie black snake, whose constant 
employment seems to be the destruction of field-mice, and other enemies to 
the orchard. Nor the cherry bird, because he is always on hand ready to 
eat the first cherries that ripen prematurely, which invariably contain the 
worm. Nor the king-bird, wren, or robin, all of which are employed from 
dawn to dusk in relieving me from my enemies. 

275. An English Opinion about Moles.— The Eoyal Agricultural Society's 
Transactions contains the following opinion about moles. The report affirms 
that "in one year, and every year, 60,000 bushels of seed-wheat, worth 
£30,000, are destroyed by wire-worms ! This prevents 720,000 bushels from 
being grown, worth £300,000. If our farmers and others, instead of killing 
moles, partridges, and pheasants, ^^• onld jyroiect them-, 720,000 bushels more 
wheat would go every year into the English market. But the creature designed 
by a kind Providence to perform the chief part of this immense good is the 
mole/ Some years since I had two fields, one of which was full of wire- 
worms, the other perhaps a third full. My crops failed on these fields for 
the first two or three years, but afterward improved rapidly, for I bought all 
the live moles I could find at three shillings a dozen, and then two shillings 
a dozen, and turned them into these fields. I had eight quarters of barley 
per acre and seven of wheat where the moles were at work all summer, 
making the ground like a honey-comb. Next year, the wire-worms, being all 
cleared out, my innocent little workmen, who had performed for me a service 
beyond the powers of all the men in my parish, emigrated to my neighbor's 
lands to perform the same service, but of course they met death wherever 
they moved, so that my little colony was wholly destroyed. Now I will 
receive all the moles that the farmers will give me, and turn them into my 
glebe." "- •' 

276. An American Opinion about Bloles.— An American writer undertakes 
to criticise what is said above, and says : " This I know from every-day 
observation to be very erroneous. I do not know that moles eat insects ; be 
that as it may, I have no doubt their living is principally seeds, and roots, and 
other vegetables. In the winter time, when snow is deep and the ground 
not frozen, I have known them to destroy whole nurseries of apple-trees, 
and even young orchards that have commenced bearing." 

Now this man don't know what he is talking about." He has confounded 
mice and moles together. It is the mice, and not the moles, that have been 
running about in this man's orchard eating his trees. But he believes it is 
moles, and has a fi.xed prejudice in his mind against them, which no argument 
perhaps can remove. We beg of farmers to learn facts about things in 
which they are so much interested. 

277. Mice and their Mischief.— Mice, we willingly concede, are mischievous 
— m young orchards excessively so. Wet seasons are favorable to the rai^d 
increase of field mice, and when followed by snowy winters and unfrozen 


turf, so they can have access to the clover root*, thcj' become a scourge. 
The hitc dry summers nearly exterminated both rats and mice — probably more 
from thirst than hunger. 

The variety of mice that does most damage to trees is known as the 
''meadow mouse," which always works under cover, girdling the trees most 
wlieii the snow lies deepest, particularly if it lies lightly or is held up by 
weeds and grass, so as to allow the vermin easily to make their paths from 
tree to tree, or from the tree to their resting-place. 

2TS. Remedies for Mice Ealing Trees. — Tramping the snow down around 
the trees is a pretty sure remedy, and where tlie orchard or nursery is not 
extensive, will answer to be put in practice, but it would be troublesome on 
a large scale, as it may have to be repeated several times in the winter. 
Some persons have found it a good plan to tramp down the snow and wet it. 
It then forms ice, that often remains nearly all winter, keeping the ground 
warm, as well as keeping the mice off. 

Downing, in his " Fruits and Fruit-Trees," says: "The following mixture 
will be found to be an effectual prevention. Take one spadeful of hot- 
slacked lime ; one spadeful of clean cows'-dung ; half spadeful of soot ; one 
handful of flour of sulpluu- — mix the whole together with the addition of 
sufficient water to bring it to the consistency of thick paint. At the 
approach of winter, paint the trunks of the trees sufficiently high to be 
beyond the reach of these vermin. Experience lias jn-oved that it does no 
injury to the tree. A dry day should be chosen for the application." 

Coal-tar has been recommended, but we advise great caution in its use, 
since many persons have destroyed their trees by it. "We would sooner try 
a coating of strong alkaline soup ; that, at Jeast, would not injure the 

279. Mice aud Osage-orange. — J. D. Cattell, of Salem, Columbiana Co., 
Ohio, says the iield-mice are eating up all the roots of Osage-orange hedges 
in that region, so that they are utterly destroyed, and their cultivation must 
be abandoned unless somebody can give a remedy. He says : 

" It has been my understanding, heretofore, that one of the greatest excel- 
lences of this plant for fencing was its freedom from all animal destroyers. 
If no remedy against the ravages of the mice can be found, it will be folly 
to set a plant of the kind in this part of the country. One of my neighliors 
has already given np half of his for lost, and grubbed out the balance. No 
doubt others are troubled in the same way. I have tried traps, terrier dogs, 
and poison, but all in vain. "What shall I do?" 

"Who can tell? 

"We heard one nurseryman siy t'lat he should dig up an Osage-orange 
hedge, because it attracted mice, and also because it entirely exhausted the 
soil of a wide space, so that he lost the growth of one row of trees. 

280. RatSi— This species of tiie genus mm is an almost intolerable nuisance 
in some portions of the United States. In fact, we do not know of any 
portion now exempt. They follow man into the wilderness. "When we 


located on the prairie, in-183-i, about 1.5 miles from neighbors, and 40 miles 
out from what has since grown to be the city of Chicago, there was not a 
rat to seen or heard of. For several years we were exempt from this pest. 
There came abundance of shipping to Chicago, and with it abundance of 
rats, and they soon spread over the whole land, multiplying and devastating. 
Xow they are great pests in the barns and stacks of prairie farmers. 

Our common breed is called " Norway rats," from the supposition that they 
originated in that country. British naturalists, however, assert that they 
were introduced into the British Islands from India. If they are tropical 
animals, all we have to say is, that they easily adapt themselves to a rigoi'- 
ous climate, where they multiply at a most prolific rate. What we are yet 
to do Avith them is a problem not easily so';ved. All the receipts to cure the 
nuisance are only preventive, not eradicative. 

2S1. Rat AntidoteSi — A correspondent of the Ga)'dener''s Montldy says : 
" I tried the effect of introducing ioto the entrance of their numerous holes, 
runs, or hiding-places, small portions of chloride of lime, or bleaching pow- 
der, wrapped in calico, and stuffed into the entrance holes, and thrown loose 
by spoonfuls into the drain from the house. This drove the rats away for a 
twelvemonth, when they returned to it. They were again treated in the same 
manner, with like effect. The cure was most complete. I presume it was 
the chlorine gas, which did not agree with their olfactories." 

Another correspondent writes: "Some four or five years since, my cellar 
became musty, to overcome which my wife sprinkled a solution of copperas 
(pretty strong) over. the bottom. Since that time we have seen no sign of 
rats about the house, notwithstanding there have been plenty of them about 
the barn and other buildings on the premises." 

Arsenic is considered, by some who have tried it, a failure, when used for 
the purpose of clearing premises of rats, because they are too cunning to 
partake of it after witnessing the death of two or three of the family. It is 
effectual, if the vermin will take the bait. 

Strychnine we consider far preferable, and although so much more costly, 
it requires but a few cents' worth to do the work of death upon a hundred 
rats. It is also the very best thing to use upon a troublesome dog or cat 
that comes prowling about your premises. One grain for a dose is sufficient. 
We have killed numerous wolves by inserting one grain of strychnine in the 
center of a piece of fresh meat, just large enougli for a mouthful for a wolf. 
As rats do not bolt their food, it is a little more diflicult to get them to take 
strychnine, it is so intensely bitter. If it is mixed with corn-meal, and a few 
drops of oil of anise are added, it will attract the rats. 

Tarring and feathering rats, and then letting them run, has been practiced, 
to give the tribe a hint that it would be well for them to leave. One rather 
smart individual, not having tar, used spirits of turpentine. He was going 
to drive the rats out of his house cellar. He was entirely successful ; for 
when he let the rat loose in his kitchen, with a " Shoo !" to it to go down the 
cellar stairs, it took the kitchen fire in its course, and then a pile of fla.x thi.t 


lay in the cellar way. lu two hours there was not a rat in the house, unless 
it might be a roasted one. 

Planter of I'aris has proved a successful poison for rats; audit has the 
advantage of being quite harmless to have about the house. A tablcspoon- 
ful of the flour of plaster, mixed in a cup of Indian meal, and slightly sweet- 
ened, will be eaten by rats, and kill them. A little grated cheese makes the 
food more attractive. Oil of anise M'ould be still more so. In fact, by the 
use of it, rats may be coaxed out of a house to eat poison, and die where 
their dead bodies would not be a nuisance. 

Phosphorus, powdered and mixed with meal, a few grains to a teacupful, 
has been often used successfully as a rat poison. 

Powdered jwtash, strewn in the paths frequented by rats, has been known 
to drive them away from a house. The theory is, that it gives them very sore 
feet, and disgusts them witli the place. 

282. English Rat-fatchers. — In England, rat-catching is a profession, sons 
often following it as the business of their fathers. The rat-catcher visits a 
farmer, and contracts with him at so much a head for all tiie rats he destroys. 
His XvA\> is a large bag, which is set with the mouth open, baited with a 
piece of bread scented with oil of anise and oil of rhodium, the scent of 
which attracts the rats, and thus he bags enough to fill the contract. He 
does not desire to rid the premises, as that would •' sjwil business." A rat- 
destroyer would not be tolerated by the honorable company of rat-catchers. 

283. Rat-Traps. — ^Among the many devices for trapping rats, we will 
mention a few of the best. A large M'ire cage-trap, where the second rat 
will go in because he sees the first in there, often proves successful. A large 
brass kettle, half full of water, with a small stone island in the center, just 
big enough for one rat to rest upon, the top of the kettle being covered with 
parchment, similar to that of a drum-head, having a cross cnt in the center, 
is a first-rate trap. Fasten a small bait upon the points of the cut, and the 
rat jumps down from a board arranged for tlic purpose, and through he 
goes into the water. He scrambles on the island and squeals fur help. An- 
other hears him, and comes looking around, sees the bait, jumps for it, takes 
the plunge, and goes down upon the other fellow's head. Then comes a 
scramble for place, the strongest pushing the weakest oft' to take his chance 
in the water. This muss, as with men, attracts others, and in they go. We 
have heard of twenty in a night thus inveigled to destruction. 

A barrel, one third full of water, with an island, the surface covered with 
chaflf, and a bait suspended over it, avo have been told, is an excellent trap. 

Ferrets and weasels have been highly recommended to be kept about the 
burn, to drive away rats. The objection to tiiem is, that they drive away the 
poultry also. Ferrets have been trained so as to be obedient to the call of 
their master, and used not only to hunt rats, but to drive rabbits out of their 

2S4. Domestic Cats. — Perhaps the best thing for a farmer to do, who is 
troubled with rats, is to multiply his stock of cats. We knew one farmer 


who kept fourteen eats, keeping np number for more tlian a year, by 
which means he got rid of all annoyance from rats, and they also hunted the 
rabbits out of an adjoining grove. 

Tlie variety of the fdis tribe known as the domestic cat, once wild, easily 
gets wild again if neglected by man, and is tlien as great a pest as the rats, 
and is given to the very bad habit of eating eggs and chickens, and catch- 
ing pigeons and other birds. 

To 2)>'eveni cats killing chiclicns, Harriet Martineaii gives the following as 
a sure preventive both against the killing of chickens and birds b}' the cats : 
"When a cat is seen to catch a chicken, tie it round her neck, and make her 
wear it for two or thi-ee days. Fasten it securely, for she will make incred- 
ible efforts to get rid of it. Be firm for that time, and the cat is cured — she 
will never again desire to touch a bird. This is what m'o do with our own 
cats, and what we recommend to our neighbors ; and when they try the ex- 
jjoriment, they and their pets are secure from reproach and danger hence- 
forth. Wild, homeless, hungry, ragged, savage cats are more difficult to 
catch ; but they are outlaws, and may be shot, with the certainty that all the 
neighbors will be thankful." 

The abundance of food and shelter obtained by the domestic cat makes 
ilicm much more prolific than in a wild state. She is generally, though veiy 
tame and gentle, much more attached to the house than to its inmates, which 
is quite the reverse with the dog. There are some remarkable singularities 
about cats. Gentle as they appear, they are very nervous, and easily 
startled, and act for a moment as wildly as tJiough never tamed. They are 
also accused of being very treacherous. Their affection for their own spe- 
cies or ours is certainly doubtful. Their conduct at times, when a member 
(f the family dies, is singular. Their anxiety also to get at a corpse has 
led to curious superstitions. In the opinion of the sujierstitious, the black 
cat has ever been attendant upon witchcraft. It is our opinion that a portion 
of this black-cat superstition originated from the fact that the hairs of a 
black cat exhibit sparks of electricity to a remai-kablc degree, when the 
atmosphere is in the right condition. To see this, take such a cat into a dark 
room, upon a clear, cold November night, and stroke the fur the wrong way, 
and if you never have seen it before, you will be surprised at the effect. 

Cats, particularly females, are generally very cleanly animals to keep as 
house pets. They are fond of warm quarters and soft beds, and their song 
of satisfaction, called purring, is very pleasant to all who have a fondness for 
cats. We have known this fondness become a cat mania. 

We look upon cats as a necessary part of farm stock, and they should be 
properly treated as much as any other kind of animals. 

285. DogSi — If there is any more unmitigated nuisance in a farming com- 
munity than dogs, such dogs as farmers generally keep, we are imable to 
name it. In the country where we live, there are some hundreds of farms 
better fitted for sheep husbandry than any other purpose, but upon which 
no sheep are kept, because the country is so full of worthless dogs. The 


country might l)c a hundred thousand dollars a year riclier, if the people 
could stock tlieir farms with sheep. A man who keeps a worthless cur to 
prowl through a neighborhood, is neither a good Christian, moral man, nor 
good neighbor. He does not do as he would be done by. A well-trained 
terrier is the only kind of a dog that is useful to farmers in general. Of 
these there are several varieties ; the best is the wire-haired terrier, an ugly- 
looking brute, but a ferocious enemy to rats. The black-and-tan terrier is a 
handsome and more agreeable-looking dog to have about a place, and a 
good ratter, when trained, but does not have such an apparent natural pro- 
pensity to destroy i-ats as the wire-haired one. He is also, for his size, a very 
strong dog, and knows nothing about fear of anything, and is therefore a 
very good house watch-dog. But we do not believe a farmer ever should 
keei) a dog for his services alone, as a watch or guard of his premises. A 
dog to be worthy of a home upon a fivrm should have several good qualities 
combined. No conscientious man can keep a dog when he knows that the 
keeping of such dog.s, whether his par'.ieular one or not, has a tendency to 
prevent the keeping of sheep ; for sheep, of all animals, have greater adapt- 
ation to the pnrposo of furnishing the poor with cheap food than any 
other domestic animal in use in this country, and they are capable of con- 
verting the coarsest herbage of the farm into the most healtliful meat of the 

286. Shepherd's Do^S. — Wlienever sheep are kept in sucli numbers as to 
constitute a considerable flock, the owner can well afford to keep a good 
shepherd's dog. One who has never seen a well-trained shepherd's dog can 
form no idea of their extraordinary sagacity and usefulness. Wo have 
ridden leisurely across a wide prairie in a wagon, accompanied by a Scotch 
coUey, half-breed slut, driving five hundred slieuji better than three men 
could have done without a dog. 

If there M-ere none but such dogs in the country, there would be ten times 
as many sheep kept. One man would be entirely competent to manage a 
thousand. He should have two dogs, so tliat they would be company for 
each other, and so that, in case of accident to one, the other would remain 

The Scotch colley very much resembles a prairie-wolf, having a broad 
forehead and pointed nose. The ears are short and upright, the fleece 
shaggy and slightly curly, Avith a bushy tail. These dogs are very intelli- 
gent, docile, and faithful, and possess an instinctive sagacity in everything 
that relates to the care of sheep. In a pleasant little book called " Anccilotes 
of Dogs," some wonderful evidences of the sagacity of Scottish shepliLr 1 
dogs are to be found, and they should be read by all farmers' boys. 

The English shepherd dogs vary considerably in appearance from the 
Scotch. The hair is smoother, and they do not appear so distinct a breed as 
the other. Both are of medium size, jierhaps about fifteen inches high. 
Tlie Irish shepherd dog is larger and more ferocious; some of them would 
tcai- a man sadly, if he interfered with the flock at night while in charge of 


the dog. The Scotcli clog is always gentle, and generally very afFectionate. 
In France, the shepherd dogs are somewhat like the Scotch, but smaller. 
The Spanish shepherds have a breed of dogs peculiar to that country. They 
are the size of a full-grown wolf, with large head, thick neck, mastifl-lookin"-, 
fierce and strong, and are often armed with a spiked collar, to make them 
more formidable to dogs, wolves, and bears, if they should attack the flock. 
Their color is generally black and white — their daily rations two pounds of 
black bread, with milk and meat when it can be had. In Spain, the f-pcat 
flocks of the country, always in charge of shepherds and dogs, make lone 
migrations every year from their lowland home to the mountain pastures, 
two or three hundred miles distant, feeding all the way in the roads and 

Sheep arc the wealth of Spain, and without the aid of shepherd dogs, that 
wealth, under the present system of management, could not be produced. 

287. Do? LawSi — In New Jersey there is a dog law which siiould be 
entitled, " An act to encourage the keeping of the most ordinary breeds of 
sheep, and no others, and to induce owners to have them killed by doo-s." 
This act provides that all sheep killed by dogs shall be paid for out of the 
public funds, at five dollars a head. To improve your flock, if you get a 
buck worth a hundred dollars, and the dogs kill him, you get five dollars. 
If your neighbor has one killed that you would not have on your farm, if 
paid five dollars for taking him, he gets five dollars. It is not a law to 
encourage improvement in sheep-breeding. 

The number of sheep annually killed by dogs in Ohio has been ascertained 
by the assessors. The number and value are astounding. 

Tiiereupon a correspondent of the Ohio Farmer says : " Shall we have a 
dog law, or must we give up keeping sheep? That is the real question. 
There would be kept fifty per cent, more sheep in this country, but for dogs ; 
not that quite that amount are dogged, but most farmers lose some, and this, 
with other risks, discourages them, and compels them to abandon the business. 
Now lot every fixrmer make this a test question in the elections this fall. 
Let it be sheep vs. dogs, and let all Republicans and Democrats see to it that 
every man put in nomination for the Legislature is sound on dogs. Let the 
candidate choose whom he will serve — sheep or dogs. I am in earnest, Mr. 
Editor. The sight of a few fine Leicesters, each worth more than all the dor^s 
in Ohio, mangled and torn by worthless curs, who are only kept because 
their owners are too lazy to kill them, has made me in dead earnest ; and 
wo to the Ohio legislator, if he depends on my vote, whose fear of doo- 
constituents shall induce him to oppose or dodge a severe dog law ! Now is 
the time, wool-growers of Ohio, to look to this matter, and see that anti-dog 
men are put in nomination by your respective parties." 

Tiiere is no use in talking about taxing dogs. Tlie dogs that really do the 
miscliief are the dogs of gentlemen of elegant leisure, who are too lazy to 
hunt M'ith them, and of the democratic loafer, who don't like to work, but 
glories in the luxury of a house full of children and a dozen do^-s. Honest 


working people, who earn their bread, don't keep wortliless dogs about them ; 
it' they keep a dog, they feed liiin, and train liini up properly ; but your 
roaming worthless vagabond will keep a score, and expect tlieni to take care 
of tiieniselves. But these fellows have votes, my dear sir; it will never do 
to tax their dogs. They would kick up such a dust about our ears that wc 
could never find our way into the State-house again. 

28S. \ Trap for (ate hiug Shcep-killiag DojSi — Make a pen of fence rails, 
begiuuing with four, so as to have it square, and as you build it, draw in 
cucli rail as you ■would the sticks of a partridge-trap, until your pen is of 
sufficient height, say five feet. In this way you Avill construct a pen that, 
Mhen finished, will peiniit a dog to enter at the top at pleasure, but out of 
which he will find it difficult to csca^jc, should he have the agility of an 
antelope. All that you have to do to catch the dog that has killed your 
sliecp, is to construct the trap where the dead sheep is left, as directed, as 
soon as possible after an attack has been made on your flock ; put a part or 
the whole of a sheep that has been killed in it, and remove the balance to 
some other field. In a majority of cases the rogue and murderer will return 
the succeding night, or perhaps the next, and you will have the gratification 
next morning of finding him securely imprisoned. Some may object to the 
plan, perhajis, on the ground that you might catch an innocent dog. If he 
is so, he can content hrmself with not trying it. 

289. A Serniou OU Dogs. — Tiie Texas Christian Advocate gets off the fol- 
lowing short sermon upon dogs, from a text to be found in Philiiipians iv. 2 — 
" Beware of dogs !" Upon this the preacher sa3's : 

"The Apostle well knew the mischievous and meddlesome spirit of dogs. 
Ilonce his caution against them. 

I. Dogs in general are a nuisance. 

Because : 

1. They excite fears of hydrophobia. 

2. Tiiey wwry and destroy sheep. 

3. They disturb our slumber. — HoM'ling in horrid concert under our win- 
dow, simultaneously baying at tlie moon. 

4. They frighten us when out at night. — A snap or growl at a neighbor's 
gate, or when turning down a dark alley, has a wonderfully nervous tendency. 

5. They are too lamiliar. — "Will sleep on the front gallery, scatter fleas, 
come into the dining-room and parlor, and go to church on Sunday mornings. 

From these and other considerations I observe : 
II. All dogs should be watched. 

1. To prevent their depredations. — Killing neighbors' cats, tearing pants, 
scaring children, and going mad. 

2. To correct their bad maimers. — Teach them they are only dogs, and not 
quite equal to " white folks." 

3. Keep them in their places. — "Wherever else they belong, I question as 
to the propriety of their getting between the sheets with gentlemen, or using 
the church as a dog-kennel. 


Application. — Have you a dog? Tlien keep him in a dog's place, and 
watcli liim. If you admit him to undue ftimiliarity, don't forget that other 
folks will still think him to be but a dog. If he has a shaggy coat and turn- 
up nose, these will not entitle him to the privilege of following you to 
church and disturbing the worship of the entire congregation. 

Though he may be as nice and sensible as his fond master or foolisli mis- 
tress, it is not very probable the preaching will do him any good. The intel- 
ligent fellow might be allowed the pleasure of trotting across the floor, and 
barking his approbation at the occasional flights of the preachei-'s eloquence, 
were a dog's gratification more important than the people's edification. 

Hence, in conclusion, I would say. Beware of dogs! and what I say to one 
I say to all. Beware of dogs ! 

Finally, to the sexton, or that good brother who raises the tunes, I would 
say with emphasis. Beware of dogs! and if those canine interlopers persist 
in coming to the place of worship, just take them out and cut oflF their tails 
close to the ears." 

290. Rabbits — To Prevent Gnawing Trees. — Tiie American Hare, commonly 
called Rabbit, is common to all the Atlantic States and Canada. It is used 
for food by most people, but abhorred by others. Although clothed in a 
thick coat of soft, whitish-gray fur, the skin is not valuable, because it is too 
tender to be serviceable, and the fur is not much, if any, better than cotton, 
for such purposes as fur, separated from the skin, is used for. These animals 
are prolific, and generally prefer to live in and about farms that have been 
suflcred to grow up badly to bushes. They do the most of their feeding at 
night, and farmers general!}' do not feel any dread of their mischief. 
Nurserymen do ; and so do those who plant young orchards near where rab- 
bits abound. When hunger presses them 'n winter, they will gnaw apple- 
trees with tender bark so as to destroy them. Young nursery trees are often 
cut off by rabbits so smoothly that one not knowing how it was done would 
suppose it was by a knife. 

To prevent the depredations of rabbits, English nurserymen dip rags into 
melted brimstone, and fasten them about among the trees. The remedy 
mentioned in 278, to prevent mice, is recommended to keep the rabbits 
away. Some persons have daubed their trees with grease scented with some 
oftensive odor, and found that rabbits would not touch them. Some have 
plastered them with fresh cow-dung. A very good remedy is to ofl'er a 
bounty for every rabbit killed in the neighborhood. 

Where trees have been injured, it is a good plan to bind up the wound 
with a plaster of clay and cow-dung, made plastic enough to adhere well ; 
this, when firmly bound on, will often save a valuable tree. 

Domesticated rabbits, if suflcred to run at large, are very ornamental, par- 
ticularly if of the finest fancy sorts, but they are sometimes unpleasantly 
mischievous. Where they can bo conveniently kept under restraint, we 
have no doubt they can be made as profitable as poultry or other small farm 
stock. In England, rabbit-breeding is quite a business, and men of wealth 


and good stai^ing^ engage in it, and form rabbit clubs, and exhibit tlicir 
stock for prizes. Some of the 6pecimens imported from London, that we 
have seen, were very beautiful. Some years ago, Francis Rotch, of Butter- 
nuts, Otsego County, N. Y., imported some of the best we have ever seen, 
and bred them to a considerable extent, finding ready sale for all he chose 
to dispose of in that way. 

We do not know of any large establishment in this country where rabbits 
are bred for sale in market for food. The common American wild rabbit is 
often seen in the New York market. 

Rabbits may be kept in very inexpensive hutches, and in tolerably close 
confinement. Their feed in summer is clover and various green things. In 
winter they will eat grain, sweet apples, parsneps, and other roots, cabbage, 
and a little sweet hay. A full-sized rabbit wants about a gill of oats night 
and morning, with a piece of rutabaga or parsncp, or its equivalent, say a 
quarter of a pound a day, and a little handful of hay. A doe, while suck- 
ling her young, which is most of the time, should be fed high, say three gills 
of oats a day, or wheat shorts, or pea meal, and roots and hay. Or in sum- 
mer, upon almost anything that grows green, if given fresh. 

A dozen or fifteen years ago, we remember having seen in "The Boy's 
Own Book" an elaborate treatise upon rabbit-breeding, and to that Ave refer 
the boy who reads this and desires to go into the business. They will also 
find frequent hints in agricultural papers, and in several books devoted io 
fancy poultry breeding. From what wc have said of the food which rabbits 
consume, it will be easy to calculate whether keeping them will be profitable. 

Newspapers bound around trees, it is declared in an article before us, will 
wholly prevent depredations of rabbits, and also keep off' the borers, and a 
wrapper well tied on will last for months. The writer says : 

" I find no other remedy necessary for either rabbit or borer. The wrap- 
pers, if properly put on, keep whole through all the changes of our variable 
winters. The trees are thus secure from damage by the rabbit. In the latter 
part of spring and early part of summer, when the beetles of the Sapcrda 
and the Biijyrcsiis are about, a few eggs will be deposited in the axils of ihc 
lower branches of trees, and at the tops of the paper wrappers. Even these 
jioints of attack, however, can in general be successfully guarded, by simply 
depositing a small piece of brown soap in the main axils, after the season's 
growth is well started, to be dissolved and washed down the stem by subse- 
quent raiiis. 

" But I do not find it necessary to resort to this precaution ; for if eggs are 
deposited at those points, I am certain to find the fact out, and make all 
right the latter part of August and first i>art of September, when I go among 
my young trees with a bucket of strong soap-suds and a hard scrubbing- 
brush, for the purpose of giving them a good hard wash, such as would make 
some people open their eyes with astonishment, and cutting out snckcrs or 
small shoots that may have pushed through the papers, and renewing the 


291. Squirrels and GopherSi — All of our Eastern and Nortliern readers will 
understand about squirrels, and how much mischief the smallest of the 
family does in the corn-field ; but they know nothing of gophers — they belong 
to the "West. In California they are almost intolerable, and it is about as 
Iiard to demise a plan to get rid of them as it is here to get rid of the '' chip- 
mucks" {Tamias tysteri). In our opinion, tlie best way to prevent them 
from digging up the seed-corn is to give them plenty to eat on the surface. 
Wliat is half a bushel of corn sown broadcast for the squirrels to pick up ? 
It would save the seed of a large field harmless. "We would willingly give 
that every year to see the dear little things around a farm. It is worlli that 
to see the old dog chase them, and " bark at the hole" where one ran through 
a stone wall. We have concluded never to kill a chipmuck. If others w'ish 
to do it, they may perform the work by poisoning corn, or they may prevent 
them from eating it by coating the seed with tar, which is done by mixing a 
pint of tar in a pail of warm water, and putting the corn in it ; then, to make 
it pleasant to handle, roll it in dry plaster. If a little flour sulphur is sprinkled 
on the wet seed, it will adhere and give it an odor that all little pests dislike. 

At tlie AVest, in woody districts, gray, black, and fox squirrels, particularly 
the first named, are sometimes very destructive to the corn-fields in autumn. 
The gray and black squirrels increase so rapidly after one or two seasons of 
an abundant supply of beech-nuts, that the rcguhir squirrel-hunts do not 
appear to diminish their numbers. They are to some extent migratory, as 
tlieir supplies change, from beech to oak lands. At such times tlie strong 
and healtiiy will swim large rivers, and uniformly take one direction, leaving 
the young and feeble at home. 

In Ohio, about the year 1835, squirrels became so numerous over the 
whole country as to threaten the entire destruction of corn-fields while in the 
milk. The following year they were all starved. In the winter they ran 
desperately over the fields, indifferent of danger, sometimes feeding npon 
tiie bark of the beech. 

The red and striped or ground squirrel are not liable to sufler from these 
vicissitudes, as they lay up a store for winter. I think the flying squirrel 
docs also, but this is a nocturnal creature, and less is known about it. 
There are also several kinds of winter birds which deposit seeds in knots 
and loose bark of trees for winter use. 

Tlie fox squirrel is the largest of the American species. It is of a reddish- 
gray color, and inhabits the prairie groves of northern Indiana, Michigan, 
Illinois, Wisconsin, and other States. It is very shy of man, is hard to get a 
hight of, and difticult to kill. 

202. Striped Gophers {SjKnnophilus tndecemlineahis). — Perhaps, when 
you see the name given to this animal by natural-history writers, you may 
imagine it is as big as its name. But it is not half as formidable to look at. 
We give the scientific name for identification, because the word " Gopher," 
in Florida, means a small land-turtle. In Wisconsin it means a squirrel 
somewhat like a chipmuck. In California it represents a different animal. 


The striped gopher abounds in tlio Xorthwcstern prairie region. In tbe first 
scttlcnieut of the country a liundrod miles around Chicago, it inhabited all 
the prairie groves and dry ravines. The following is its description : The 
ears are short and rounded ; the tail slender and liairy, about lialf tlie Icng'.h 
of the body ; the body is of a dark browu above, longitudinally marked with 
altcruale rows and si)ots of a light fawn-color, which correspond nearly with 
the belly and sides. The lighter lines on the npper part may be distinguished 
by the brown intervals between, wliich arc occupied by the single rows of 
li<»ht spots, which are generally indistinct on the anterior half of the body. 

Although these animals are considered grain-eaters, and called mischiev- 
ous, we believe they are among the many real friends of the farmer. Like 
the weasel, which occasionally cats a chicken for lack of more favorite food, 
the gopher sometimes eats the farmer's seed-corn, but lie should not be con- 
demned as an enemy for that act, without a fair hearing. 

There may be some of the gopher family that are destructive of farm 
crops. The evidence is very strong to that effect against tbe Californian 
gopher, which lives in holes all through the cultivated fields, and does not 
seem to be very particular wluxt it eats, whether corn, wheat, potatoes, beets, 
melons, pumpkins, so that it is somctliiug which the farmer has grown for 
his own use. 

It is not so with the small striped gopher. This beautiful little animal 
should be carefully preserved npnn all farms where it now exists, and we 
have no doubt it would prove a valuable addition to the stock of any farm 
where it is not found in a natural condition. It is a-grcat destroyer of field- 
mice, and in our opinion a whole troop of gophers do less damage in one 
season than the mice which one of them would kill in a single day. For 
they are real epicures, eating nothing but the blood and brains, when the 
supply is abundant. These animals have such an appetite for flesh, that 
if deprived of it, a mother will cat her young. Such carnivorous animals 
must be better hunters than cats, and should be carefully preserved, and not 
" drowned out," as they often are, wlien their homes are discovered by the 
boys, just for the " sport" (cruelty) of killing them. Tiicsa animals seem to 
have a natural instinct that man is their common enemy. We liave seen them 
often in situations where they could never have had any acquaintance with 
man, at least civilized ones, who are the only ones who ever kill such small 
game for "sport," and we found tliem wild in the extreme. They utter a 
cry when discovered, and dart away into some shelter with great rapidity. 
In this respect, quite unlike the chipmuck, which will play around a dog or 
man in tbe most tantalizing manner. 

The striped gopher never gna^vs trees, roots, fruiis, nor green vegetable^, 
and in fiict does the farmer no damage except to eat a little seed-corn. For 
all that they eat in the harvest field, they save twice as much in driving 
away mice and squirrels. Chipmucks, red squirrels, and mice can not 
inhabit the same locality with gophers; and yet there are'))erson5 Avho liave 
offered bounties to have them destroyed. Let such learn this fact from this 


Yolume, if they learn no other, tliat the striped gopher is worth its weiglit 
in gold upon any farm where field-mice are so abundant that they destroy 

293. SknskSi — "We don't know tliat we can afford to stem the current of 
popular opinion so far as to recommend the protection instead of destruction 
of skunks [Mephitis Americana). AYe are aware that these animals are 
troublesome visitors to the poultry-yard, and on that account they are hunted 
and killed without mercy, and without a thouglit about what they live upon 
all the time that they do not eat chickens. As they are flesh-eaters, they must 
find somelhing of the flesh kind to eat, and that something is the very thinp 
that the farmer is most anxious to get rid of — it is mice, and worms, and 
bugs. The quantity of these pesls destroyed by a single skunk is enormous. 
It is very rare that they come about a house, tliougli we have known tliem 
to live for weeks in cellars, or store-rooms, or under a crib, without producing 
any nuisance. They never emit their fetid odor iinless attacked by man or 
dog; and it has been contended tliat if was practicable to domesticate a 
skunk so that he would be quite a harmless pet. We can not recommend 
making }>ets of these animals, but we do recommend farmers to learn the 
important fact, that if they do him a little damage occasionally, they also do 
liim an incalculable amount of good. Generally speaking, there is not a 
farmer in all tl;e region inhabited by t\\c. Ilephitis who could not Avell afford 
to exchange dogs for skunks, and pay ten dollars each for tlie bargain. 
There is one other thing tliat skunks are good for. As an article of food we 
don't think there is any wild animal that makes a more dainty dish, and we 
liold that we are tolerably well qualified to judge. A fat skunk, nicely 
dressed and roasted, hung by a string before an old-fashioned wood fire 
till beautifully browned, and then served upon a platter flanked with boiled 
mealy potatoes, covered with the brown gravy made of the fat driji, is 
beyond dispute " a dish fit to set before the king." 

204. Toads.— Although not among the quadrupeds, of which this chapter 
treats, toads are among the friends of the farmer, and as sueii sliould have a 
place in this connection. Every man wlio owns or cultivates a garden or 
field, who knows anything about tlie natural history of the toad, will never 
allow one to be destroyed. Tliere is no animal more harmless, and few that 
do the fanner more good than toads. Their whole food is of insects injuri- 
ous to the farmer. The prejudice against "the ugly things" is a foolish one, 
and should be done away with. We once had a toad in the garden wliich, 
by some particular mark, was known to the children, who called it "fiither's 
pet toad," because it really ajipeared as though it knew that we were its 
friend and protector. Tiiis toad cauio year ai'icr year to lend us its valua' i - 
aid in exterminating the insect pests of the garden. We liad anotiier that 
made the milk-room its summer home, where it v/as constantly engaged in 
catching flies and bugs. Toads and bats should both be protected from harm, 
and children taught to encourage them to come about the house. Bats are 
great insect-eaters, and never visit the house of an evening for any other 


purpose tliau eatcliiug insects for food. It is charged against them, that they 
sustain bed-bugs as parasites. 

295. ("amels— Their lutroduction into the Tnited States.— It is a great jump 
from the back of a toad to that of a camel, but not so great as politicians 
sometimes make. As we have to make the leap somewhere, it may as well 
be done here as anywliere, and after a very short ride we will jump down 
again upon the back of a goat. We have introduced camels, because we 
want all, particularly the farmers' boys who read this book, to learn the 
fact that camels have already been introduced into the United States, and 
put to service as beasts of burden. The fii*st imported were in 1S57, we 
believe, under the auspices of the general government, since which time 
they have been in active government service, principally in Texas, and have 
made one or more trips to the Pacific with army otficers. 

The Galveston jVews gives the following account of the strength of one 
of the camels. It says : 

"There were near a dozen on the wharf, of all ages. The camel loaded 
was one of the largest. On the word of command being given, the camel 
lay down, ready to receive liis load, which consisted of five bales of hay, 
weighing in the aggregate over 1,400 pounds, which was firmly bound to the 
pannier placed upon tiie animal's hump. Upon the utterance of command 
by the native keeper, the huge animal arose, Avithout any apparent effort, to 
his feet, and walked off in a statel}' manner along the wharf and through 
the city. We were informed that the same camel had 1,600 ponnds placed 
upon him, with which enormous weight he arose. Tlie animals arc all ex- 
ceedingly tractable, and seem to possess much afi'ection for any one who 
treats them kindly, as an example of which Mrs. W. informs us that one of 
them, a pretty white one, which she had petted, would always kiss her when 
she vcas within kissing distance, which fact, we really thought, certainly 
proved the animal to possess an excellent taste as well as an affectionate dis- 
position. In thein native country the average load for a full-grown camel is 
some 800 pounds, with which the}' perform their long journeys over deserts, 
with but little food or water." 

It is to be hoped that camels will become one of the ordinary beasts of 
burden in this country, where there are such vast arid plains, as in northern 
Texas, Xew Mexico, M-estern Kansas, and Utah, that no other animals can 
traverse them. 

It is stated that the Emperor of Brazil is about to introduce dromedaries 
into that country. This animal can go long journeys without water, and 
therefore will be found valuable upon some of the deserts and plains of 
country. A common load of an ordinary dromedary is 500 pounds. One 
of the camels in Texas has carried two bales of cotton, of 500 pounds each. 
One of the best kinds of dromedaries for riding can travel 400 miles with- 
out stopping to eat, drink, or rest. 

At the Xorth, where horses, mules, and oxen are in such common use, we 
do not think that camels will ever supersede them. 


296. Goats.— lutroductioa of the Cashmere Goats into the Uuited States.— 

About the most unprofitable of all varieties of I'arm-stock is the common 
goat. It is known in some parts of the country as the Irish goat, probably 
because the people from Ireland iu this country, particularly in cities, keep 
more goats than all the rest of the inhabitants. These are of all colors, as 
much so as the common breed of horned cattle, and about t,he size of com- 
mon sheep. The she-goats give a small quantity of milk, and the kids 
afford some flesh food, at a small cost to the owners, as they forage their 
living, and frequently do more mischief in a neighborhood or upon a farm 
than their necks are worth. The hair of the common goat is worth nothing 
for manufacturing purposes. It is quite the reverse with the Cashmere 
goat. The fleece of this variety is eight times as valuable as fine wool ; and, 
fortunately, it has been found that a cross upon the common goat, even in 
the first progeny, produces a fleece about half as valuable as the full blood, 
so that the breeding of goats in this country for the fleece is likely soon to 
become quite common, and a profitable branch of husbandry, particularly 
in some of the I'oughest districts of country. 

To Dr. James B. Davis, of South Carolina, the country is indebted for the 
introduction of the pure Cashmere goats, which are now to be found iu 
various parts of the United States; and to lion. Richard Peters, of Atlanta, 
Ga., it is equally indebted for the interest he took at an early day in the 
propagation of the original stock, which he purchased of Dr. Davis, Mr. 
Peters, being a wealthy, public-spirited gentleman, spared no pains, even 
when success was doubtful, in getting this breed established upon a firm 
basis, and proving that its crosses upon the common breed would be profit- 
able, as well as upon several other varieties of fine-wooled goats. 

We had the pleasure of an acquaintance with Dr. Davis and his stock at 
Charleston, in 1S19, shortly after his return from several yeai-s' residence at 
Constantinople, He brought with him seven females and two males of the 
Cashmere goats, besides several other curious sjiecimens of the livestock of 
the East. He stated his belief to be that the Cashmere, Persian, Angora, 
and Circassian goats are all of one breed, and that they have been slightly 
changed by locality, principally by altitude. These fine goats usually breed 
two kids in the spring, and, unfortunately, where rapid propagation is an 
object, the males preponderate. 

The progeny of these goats is now to be found in all the States from N"ew 
York to Texas. Li the latter State they have been established pretty exten- 
sively. We saw a letter written by John R. McCall, at Austin, in August, 
1S60, which estimated that two lumdred head, principally bucks, had been 
i'.itroduced into Texas. 

Tlie demand for the fleece of Cashmere goats may be calculated from the 
fact that it is stated that 4,000 looms and 12,000 people are employed in the 
city of Lyons, France, in the manufacture of the fleeces of Cashmere goats, and 
that they are worth from four to eight dollars a pound. As soon as the supply 
is large enough, we shall have manufactories in operation in this country. 


Casliiiicrc slunvls were exhibited at tlie Crystal Palace, New York, vahieil 
at one tlioiisand dollars cacli. These were all made by the needle. Fabrics 
m;ide of Caslunere goat's fleece, it is supposed, will outwear those made of any 
libroiis material yet discovered. 

The Thibet goat, one of which we saw at Dr. Davis's, differs from the 
Caslimere materially. Tiie outward appearance is that of a very coarse- 
huired animal ; but there is an uuder-coat of long, white, silky wool, which 
weighs about a pound wlien combed out. Dr. Davis thought this like the 
wild goat of the Rocky Mountains. "Who knows if thc?y are identical? 

Dr. Davis imported, also, the Scinde goat, which comes from Scinde, at 
tlic mouth of the Indus. Tliis was a renuu-kably largo goat, witli monstrous 
pendulous cars. 

A goat used in Malta is the best milker of the family. A good ewe givcA 
a gallon a day. Goats' milk, in all Eastern countries, particularly in mala- 
rious districts, is considered more healthy than the milk of cows; aiul some 
learned physicians in tliis country declare that cows' milk, in malarious dis- 
tricts, is tlie moving cause of many attacks of bilious fever. In this view of 
t!ie subject, it may be well to inquire wliethcr it would not be to the advant- 
;!ge of the people, in a sanitary as well as pecuniary point of view, to intro- 
duce the improved breeds of goats into all sections reputed subject to mala- 
rious diseases. 

297. Brcediag- Fish for Foo«l on t!i8 Farta.— Wc do Tiot iVel willing totloso 
the chapter upon animals on the farm, without calling attention to the sul)- 
ject heading this paragraph. 

Fish are the least cosily food that man can obtain ; yet. owing to the 
scarcity, the labor of taking them out of the Avater — which is all the expense 
a tending their i)roduction — has become so great, that fish arc sold in our 
market at nearly as high a price per pound as meat. Salnuin arc really 
higher than choice cuts of cither beef or mutton. And yet salmon can be 
grown at very trifling expense. 

We have long been producing oysters by artificial means, without wliich 
our market coidd not be supj)lied ; and yet, with tliat fact before our eyes, 
very few attempt to produce fish b}^ an equrlly easy jirocess. One fact of 
importance, in proof of the benefit of simply protecting fish from being 
taken in the spawning season, is tlie following: 

"In the river Foyle, in the nor;h of Iiehmd, by a steady perseveranee in 
a proper system of proteelion, the amount of salmon taken was raided from 
an average of 43 tuns annually, in 1823, to that of 30U tuns in 1812; while 
in the small river of Ncwjiort, in the co-mty of Mayo, in M"hieli the salmon 
w;is Ibiinerly uiipio!<.etccl 1)_\ !,;>.. ;iii,i . oascqiicnJy ti.'.en at all periods of 
tlie year, within three years after tlie introduction of parliamentary regula- 
tions enforcing tlieir protection during the breeding sea^on, the annual take 
was increased from half a tui\ of fish to eiglit tnns of salmon and three tuns 
of white trout, with a certainty of a still higher increase. 

"In view of the great augmentation in the price of all the articles of food 


and necessaries of life in this country, llie small probability of any consiJer- 
able reduction, and the actual Sufferings of many of the laboring class from 
Avant of sufficient food, it appears to me that this subject is worthy of the 
closest consideration, and that any one who can suggest and effect the means 
of furnishing a new and ample supply of cheap, nutritions food, has some 
small claim'to be thought of as not an entirely useless member of the com- 

There is a liitlo book, published by the Applctons, that gives in detail all 
the French plans for artificial fish-breeding, and any one who reads that 
voUimc can go to work and stock Isis own waters with any kind of fish he 
desires. That our natural supply has failed, there is not a shadow of doubt, 
and that it never will be replenished, except by arlifieial breeding, is eqrtally 
indisputable. That a re-stocking of our waters with fish, so as to make them 
as plentiful as formerly, would prove one of the cheapest modes of lessening 
the price of human food, is just as certain. 

In the "West Indies, fish and turtle are constantly kept and stall-fed. At 
free running they never become fat, any more than our land stock. The 
j)ond3 are construcled of stones, of irregular figure in wall, so as to retain 
three or four feet of water at the lowest tides, Tlie water of the rising tide 
flows freely in. These ponds have a deck of plank over them, laid about tvro 
inches apart, for admission of air and light. A hatchway in the middle of 
the floor is opened to throw in their food, which usually consists of fry, or 
small fish, taken by cast-nets in any required cpiantity. When this is scat- 
tered among them, the excessive eagerness of the fish is an interesfing sight 
— their bright eyes, fiae teeth, and sparkling colors showing beautifully, as 
they leap out of water to catch the falling bait. 

Tlie housekeepers send for a suitable fish for dinner shortly before the time 
to cook it. The person has a strong line and hook, with or without bait ; he 
lets it down, and the fish rush toward it, and he must be expert to let it dro2> 
to the mouth of the grouper, hamlet, snapper, Avhite or blue band porgie, 
etc., which he wants. Such a fish never appears on the tables of the North- 
ern States, and yet every town on our sea-coast ought to have them. As it 
is now, when the poor fisherman has caught more than he can sell, the over- 
jjIus is a dead loss. 

There is nothing more simple than the artificial breeding of fish. The 
entire mystery consists in taking the female during her time, and by run.ning 
the thumb vv-ith a gentle steady pressure down her back, force out her ova 
in a jar of pure fresh water. The male is then taken in the same way, and 
m'^de to yield a few dro'is of the spermatic fluid in the same vessel, tlie two 
aiu li.en ;-i.;rcd togv.h.i flu" a, few mcicnls, and the contact of .the fluid oi' 
the male has the effect to vitalize the eggs at once. The eggs are then laid 
down in shallow tanks with gravel bottoms, arranged in a series of steps so 
that running water can continually pass over them. Tlie whole trouble of 
the breeder is then to keep the eggs free from any sediment or muddy deposit, 
and in due time each e^'g becomes a fish. Thus almost every egg in an 


innumerable ova can be turned to account for the benefit of man. Tlicrc 
is, liowcver, something to ilo after the eggs have become fish, and that is, to 
confine them M'ithin certain limits by a dam, until they are old enough to be 
able to take care of themselves, and make fight against the larger fish which 
would eat them up. There are now three or four establishments in the 
country for the artificial breeding of fish, and we sec no reason why every 
lake and river may not be filled M'ith life and food, and made to make an 
ample return for all investments. 

The cultivation of fish in France and some other countries of Europe has 
become as much of a trade as any other occupation, and the results in supply- 
ing food and aflbrdiug a handsome recompense to the owner have been equal 
to the most sanguine expectations. It is surprising that, more attention is 
not paid to it in this country where the facilities are unsurpassed. Occasion- 
ally an individual makes a trial, but little however has yet been done in this 
line compared with what might be accomplished. A writer in a South 
Carolina paper gives a description of a domestic fish-pond on the plantation 
of Mr. Freeman Hoyt, Sumterville. Mr. Iloyt had a small stream of water 
which ran through a low place in such a form as to enable him, by a dam of 
some 50 yards long, to construct a pond of some 700 feet in length by 150 in 
width, with a depth varying from the shores to 12 or 15 feet in the center. 
This gave him a pond of over two and a half acres, where he could raise 
nothing. He deposited in the pond eight good-sized trout, and about 300,000 
eggs, with a larger amount of smaller fish for the trout to feed upon, and in 
(uie year the water was literally swarming with the finny tribes. His trout 
one year old are some seven inches in length. The water running from the 
dam passes through a sieve, so that the fish can not escape from the pond. 
The necessary apparatus for cultivating, feeding, and taking care of the fish 
costs but a small sum, and the proceeds of the pond will be a source of much 
pleasure and profit. And this is but one instance in thousands which might 
with equal facility be turned into a source of revenue. 

lu many sections of the country numerous springs and streams abound, 
confined within narrow valleys, that may be converted into permanent ponds 
and thus be made to yield a profit in fish far beyond the capacity of the 
same area of the best of land devoted to the most profitable farm crops. 
Tiiesc streams when supplied with living springs may be converted into 
nurseries of trout — the best of all fresh-water fish. Tlie streams or ponds 
more sluggish in their nature may be made equally productive in a supply 
of still-water fish. This suliject has been brought into extensive practice in 
France and other portions of Europe, and more recently a number of suc- 
cessful trials have been made in the United States to'multiply domestic fishes, 
wliicli may be as much at the command of the owner as the fowls in his 
barn-yard, affording an equal luxury and at a much less cost. 

or artificial propagation of fish in Scotland and Ireland, a late number of 
the Manchester (England) Guardian said : " As several reports have been 
circulated in the newspapers to the cft'ect that the attempt to propagate 


salmon by artificial means in Ireland and elsewhere had extensively failed, 
we think it right to state that we have obtained some information from the 
very best sources, which convinces us that these reports are wholly unfounded. 
On the contrary, we are glad to say the success attendmg the iirst attempt 
at propagation on an extensive scale in the country has surj^assed our most 
sanguine expectations. It is reported from Perth, where about 350,000 ova 
are nearly hatched, that everytliing has progressed most satisfactorily ; the 
whole of the ova, M'ith a trifling exception, seem in a lively state. The only 
difficulty appears to be that of providing sufiicient ponds for such a multitude 
of fishes, when they are able to swim, as the feeding-ponds already provided 
will not contain one tenth of them ; and such is the number, that there 
appears no other way, after having hatched and protected them for twenty 
weeks, but that of committing them to the river to take their chance. At 
Galway about 260,000 ova are in a similar prosperous condition. Propagation 
on a smaller scale has also been carried into eflPect on the rivers Tweed, Lou- 
chard, the Foyle, Bush Mills, the Blackwater, the Moy, the Dee, near Chester, 
and other places. By tiie use of spring water the spawn has been entirely 
protected from injury by frost, during the past severe winter; and of 2,500 
eggs which were sent from Galway to Basle, a distance of nearly 1,000 
miles, M. Lex states that a considerable portion are good, and in a state likely 
to live." 

Eobert L. Pell, of Ulster County, N. Y., has done a good deal to establish^ 
fish-ponds upon his farm; he says " that he is trying to grow the moss-bunker 
for manure, and hopes for success in growing them, but thinks the use of 
this fish the cause of disease in the districts where used. As many as 86,000 
moss-bunkers have been taken in a seine at one haul upon our coast. Mr. 
Pell also has in his ponds the black bass of the lakes — a fish that grows as 
large as shad. Another fish from the lakes very much resembles the black 
bass, and flourishes in artiflcial water. Both do well, and are easily caught 
with a hook. The dace is a good fish for ponds, as he prefers still water. 
The rock bass is a common fish in Lake Champlain, and is much esteemed, 
and can be cultivated without difficulty. The muscalonge, from the lakes, 
is an excellent fish, and appears well calculated for artificial water if puiw 
This fish grows large, and somewhat resembles the pickerel or pike of the 
lakes. Mr. Pell has the stickleback, that curious little fish that builds a nest 
something like a bird. Haddock he has tried, but failed of success, not- 
withstanding he salted the pond. The haddock is much inferior to the cod- 
fish, although frequently salted and sold as cod. He also gave accounts of 
experiments with several other varieties, and how to transport fish alive 
safely. Mr. Pell thinks it is possible to stock all the streams in tlio country 
with fish, and thereby increase the food of the people to a very great extent, 
without any expense." 

A writer in The Ilomestead says : 

" Three years ago I constructed, in a ravine, a fish-pond covering a surface 
of about three fourths of an acre. It is fed by four small springs, and ic 


ceivcs a large amount of surface-water from the slopes around. It is fifteen 
feet deep at tlie greatest depth, and lias shallow bays and inlets, wliere the 
ruiall lish may breed and find proleetion from larger ones. It contains a 
small island, and the shores are embellislied with flags (Iris), water-lilies 
(XymphcB odorata), and olher water-plants. It was stocked 'witli yellow 
bass, Oswego bass, white perch, and every variety of sun-fish and minnows, 
also a dozen gold-fish {Cypr'nius aiiraiua). And now, at the end of three 
years, it is astonishing to note the vast in'crease in my scaly family. They 
have multiplied by hundreds, and grown in size beyond all my calculations. 
Tiie gold-fish number several hundred, some of them over a foot in lengtli, 
and a few of them are beautifully niarked with silvery sides and red fins, 
iiead, and tail ; otliers witli golden sides and black fins and tail. I had no 
idea that they would thus sport in colors, but certainly the}' are very beauti- 
ful. The other fisli have grown so much that I intend to commence usitig 
them for.tlie table in autumn. I have not fed these fish, except for amuse- 
ment and to tame them, wlien a few crumbs of bread are tiirown in from a 
small bridge connecting the island with the shore, and the fish called up like 
cliickens. The sun-fish, gold-fish, and smaller fry soon learned to cnme at 
my call, and to follow me in great numbers, from one end of the bridge to 
the other, for their morning or evening meal. 

" Tiie young bass (tlie old ones hold l)ack) and the sun-fish dart to the 
surface for their food, and have a livelj' scramble fcr it; the gold-fish ]uclc 
i.p wluii sinks to the bottom. Their habits in this way are very much like a 
llock of chickens, for some of the smaller fisu take their pofiiion imme- 
diately under my feet, to pick up the small crumbs that fall, in breaking the 
larger ones to throw out. Some persons ri;-'^ a £n-i:iM bell to 1 -irT tlioir fish 
up, but I prefer calling mine. They do not appear to come from a greator 
distance than about forty feet to any one spot. I feed them in several i)laces, 
to note the varieties and their growth. Now, as to the utility of this pond, 
it furnishes ice for my own use and three or four of my neighbors who have 
ice-houses; it also affords excellent stock water, and will doubtless liercafter 
supply my table with fish. A small skiff on its surlacc gives many a pleas- 
ant hour of recreation to the young who are fond of rowing. 

"The construction of this pond was very simple. The earth was excavated 
across the ravine four feet deep and five feet wide for a foundation ; then 
stiff clay filled in and well pounded, to prevent leakage at the bottom. Tlio 
earth from the bottom and sides of the ravine was thrown on the top of this 
foundation, to raise the embankment to the proper hight. A waste weir at 
one side, paved with flag-stones, and two feet lower tlian the top of the dam, 
suflicicntl}- large to carry off the heaviest flow of water in very heavy rains, 
guarded by a wire screen to prevent the cscopc of the fish, completed the 
construction. It is now sodded over, and jilanted with willows at the foot, 
and is considered safe. The exjiense of making such a pond is small, and it 
adds much to the value of a farm.'' 

298. Trout Streams— Reasons for the Disappearance of Trout.— One of the 


very best authoi'ities in the country — Geo. Dawson, a great lover of pisca- 
torial sports — gives, in the Albany Eoeninrj Journal, the following reasons 
for the disappearance of tron.t from streams where they were abundant. 
He says : 

"Every one who has lived a score of years in the neighborhood of mountain 
or spring brooks remembers when, in such and such a stream, trout were 
abundant, where scarcely one is now ever taken. 'What has become of 
them V is a question which every one has been asked, or has asked himself, 
a thousand times. One says, 'They have been driven out by sawdust from 
mills erected upon the stream.' Another, who lives where tanneries have 
been erected, thinks ' the tan bark has killed or disgusted them.' Another 
says, ' Since the alders which used to border the creek have been cut down, 
and the forest cleared away, they have sought greater solitude.' Others 
say, 'They have gone because trout will not stay where there is a great deal 
of passing to and fro, as there necessarily is in a thickly populated locality ;' 
and others still insist that ' they have all been fished out.' Now, in my 
opinion, not one of these reasons is real. ISTeither sawdust, nor tan bark, nor 
clearings, nor dense population, nor excessive fishing, is the cause of depopu- 
lation. Some of the very best trout streams that I know of are full of saw- 
dust and tan bark. The bottom of Caledonia Creek is not only a bed of 
sawdus^, but the creek lies in the midst of a dense population, and has been 
fished, niglit and day, for thirty year?. I^everthelcss, in its cold, crystal-like 
watei", trout are more plenty to-day, and more are taken, than ten years 
since. I have been more lliau once surfeited with success in a stream in 
Canada where the sawdust was so thick that it formed a compact covering 
MDon its surface ; and cverv venr T take trout from a little brook in Connecti- 
cut which has been clearea and fished for almost a ctuitury. There are three 
great causes for the depopulation of trout streams : First, the erection of 
establishments upon them in which lime is largely used ; second, the intro- 
duction into the streams of jjike or pickerel, whose voracity is, sooner or 
later, fatal to all competitors ; and thirdly, and principally, the gradual 
cliange of the temperature of the water. Trout will not live long in water 
whicli is not, at all seasons, of a temperature which may not, in comparison 
with other water, be characterized as cold. Other causes besides those I 
have named sometimes operate; but, in ninety-nine cases out of a hundred, 
the changed temperature of the water is the cause of the absence of trout 
from streams where they were once abundant." 

He does not give the reason of this change of temperature, but we do : it 
is just the difference between a cool forest shade and a broad expanse of hot 
sunshine. Where these mountain streams once were shaded from the first 
gushing spring to their mouths at some large river, the}' are now exposed to 
the full force of the noonday sun, until the water is heated to a degree as fatal 
to the brook trout as ice would be to a tropical plant. Tlie streams that still 
retain trout are those which are so hirgely supplied with cold spring water 
that the temperature is kept at a healthy jjoint, notwithstanding the denuded 


State of flic land. Sawdust has no more effect upon tlic fish than rotting 
leaves and M-ood in the forest streams. The washing of cultivated fields, by 
which the water is made impure, has more effect upon fish of all sorts than 
sawdust, or, in our ojjinion, lime, in such quantities as result from any manu- 
facturing establishment. This fact must be kept always in view in establish- 
ing artificial ponds for fish-breeding. Make them where the water will not 
be roiled by every shower. 

299. Eel Streams and Eel-Fishing. — In all parts of the country where eels 
abound, they may be made an essential part of the food of the family in the 
autumn months, if the streams are such as easily admit the construction of 
weirs and placing traps or eel-pots. In some parts of the country the eel 
business affords no mean item of income to farmers who have riparian rights, 
the work not interfering materially with ordinary farm labor. 

We find the following interesting account of the eel fishery on the Susque- 
hanna in the Lancaster (Penn.) Herald : 

" About the middle of August the water of the stream becomes very low, 
and usually by September that in the channel is only a few feet deep, leav- 
ing the stony bottom, for a wide space on either side, in some places nearly 
bare, with occasional deeper furrows which pass along it. At this stage of 
water, the instinct which governs the fish to descend the rivers previous to 
the advent of cold weather becomes the means of their destruction. For 
many miles of the river's length, therefore, north and south of us, the people 
owning tiie shore adjoining erect their fisli-dams and gins, by deepening the 
cliannel somewhat, and building an elongated Y-sliaped wall, at the lower 
])oint of which is fixed a box, from M-hich the fisii, when once caught, can 
not extricate themselves. Obeying this instinct in their descent of the 
stream, they find themselves borne pleasantly in this channel, and, wriggling 
themselves cheerily, they let the current, pent in by t!jc walls, carry them 
along until they tumble plump into the box at the termination of the V. 
The fish taken in this manner are for tiie most part eels, of which almost 
incredible quantities are captured during the fall season. Their ' run' only 
takes place during the night. In daytime they j-emain quiet in the compar- 
atively deep pools of the river. The work of catching them, liowever, is no 
sinecure, not so much on account of the labor as of the wakefulness and ex- 
posure which it involves. In some of the dark and showery nights of the 
season the game will come into the box so fast that the watcher, who is often 
stationed there with a boat, can scarcely remove them into it with sufficient 
celerity. At other times there will be scarcely spoil enough in the boxes to 
repay the trouble in watching them. It is only the larger apparatus and 
dams, however, that arc thus cared for, the smaller being rarely filled to 
overflowing. Fishermen secure and salt down some five or ten barrels of 
eels during the season, besides living entirely upon them during the catch. 
The larger operators make the business pay, as a single man alone can 
perform all the labor required in taking and salting the fish. We have 
seen various illustratiocs of digital dexterity, and also Ole Bull's manipu- 

Seo. 13.] 



latiou of the violin, but could any rapid manipulator once behold the 
marvelous rapidity with wliicli some of tlie fishermen divest the eels of their 
slippery epidermis or integuments, they would stand abashed, and, like the 
sable individual in the song, ' Lay down the fiddle and the hoe' forever 
af urv,-ard. We are at a loss to see how it is possible for any fish whatever 
to descend to the mouth of the river, excepting it be a few belated ones, 
who delay their return until a rise in the river gives them security from the 
low-water traps. From Marietta to a point perhaps 100 miles up, excepting 
in a few jilaces, these eel-gins are so numerous that they must entirely emj)ty 
the river of eels, the run bontinuing constantly until frost, and the fishing 
being terminated only, as we have already said, by the fall rains. "When 
these occur, the boxes are taken up. The walls which remain under tiie 
water are very seldom disturbed, and the next year, with very little repairs, 
are just as good as ever. The eels are packed in full-sized barrels, and many 
are sent to Baltimore. Quantities are purchased by sea-going vessels, whose 
skippers are aware of the delicious flavor of this rather anomalous article 
of provision. " 

The kind alluded to in this extract is the " silver eel," which is also taken 
all along the sea-coast by hooks and spears, and sold in great abundance m 
all the city markets, at as high a price per pound as beef or mutton. 

Now will farmers please to think that eels can be artificially bred as well 
as any other fish, and that there are a great many streams and ponds, par- 
ticularly in the West, where there are no eels, which might be made to fur- 
nish a vast amount of food, as well for home use as for sale. 

There is another kind of eels called lamprey, or lamper-eels, much esteemed 
in some places. This kind have no gills, but have sucker mouths, and 
breathing holes upon each side of the neck. These are found sometimes iu 
great abundance in the streams of the Eastern States, in the spring of the 
year, and are easily caught by hand, by wading the shallows of the stream, 
where they are found clinging by their mouths to the rocks or large pebble 

Tiie silver eels are also caught by wading streams at night, with torches 
and spears, during low water, after harvest. This used to be accounted 
great sport for the boys, when we were counted one. Many a good meal 
we furnished the family, also, by sitting an hour or two of a summer even- 
ing by the side of the mill-pond, with a hook baited with a small fish. This 
we mention to encourage farmers to take steps toward re-stocking their 
streams and ])onds, as well as making artificial ones. 

300. Aucient Fish-Brcedingi — Lest our readers should suppose artificial 
breeding of fish is a " new-fangled notion," we state that it has been prac- 
ticed in China many centuries ; and it is probably a century since the mat- 
ter attracted attention in Germany. 

In that country fish-bveeding has now become an extensive and profitable 
business. In France, also, there are many establishments, in some of which 
it has been demonstrated that salmon can be successfully bred in fresh-water 


ponds, from eggs obtained from salmon that come from the sea into fresh- 
water streams to deposit tlieir eggs at the spawning season, -without allow- 
ing the fish ever to swim in sea-water. And these young fish, it is found, 
will reproduce their species. 

If what we have written should incite any one to undertake to make arti- 
ficial ponds, or stock the natural waters of his farm with that kind of living 
animals wliich will give him the cheapest animal food that can be produced, 
he should first procure and carefully study the books already published upon 
this question, and, if possible, visit those who have had experience, such as 
Dr. Garlick, of Cleveland, Ohio, Eobert L. Pell, of Ulster Co., N. Y., Messrs. 
Treat & Son, Eastport, Maine, E. C. Kellogg, Hartford, Conn., and many 

As an article of diet, there is no mistaking the fact, gained by reading 
and observation, that it is conducive to health, and particularly that those 
who use fish as their principal food are exetnpt from scrofulous and tu])crcu- 
lous diseases. This alone should prompt artificial breeding of fish in this 


(Page 275.) 

This picture in its two parts is allegorical, though drawn from an 
original. It is intended to teach. It should be studied with that 
object. Then it will convey its own lesson. If the residence of 
fiirraer Snug is most attractive, let every farmer strive to make his 
so, and keep it in that order. If the residence of farmer Slack is 
repulsive, let it be a lesson to every f\xrmer's son. 

After looking at this picture, placed as a frontispiece to Chapter 
III. — The Farmery — let him carefully read that chapter. It is full 
of instruction. This picture is not designed as an index to the con- 
tents of that chapter, but to tell its own story — a stor}' of good and 
bad management. As you read, you will see how such a residence 
as this dilapidated one produces a debasing influence upon the mind/ 
of children, and what inducements you have to beautify home. 





""li tins section, the size, form and construction of 
farm-liouses, and adaptation to the purpose for which 
they are designed, will be treated, and reasons given why 
they should be convenient, light, well-ventilated, airy in 
: Summer, warm in "Winter, and handsome, both in the inte- 
rior and exterior. Here, too, all who need the information, 
will be able to learn how to build their dwellings so as to 
make them, without great cost, all that wo have indicated. 

301. Influence of the Dwelling upon Character. — "I Avill 
tell you the character of the man, if you will show me the 
house he lives in." This quotation embodies a volume of 
truth, and the fact should be impressed upon the minds of all 
farmers' children, as well those who live in such a house as 
that of Farmer Thrifty, as those in the tumble-down mansion 
of Farmer Slack. If they were bom in one like the former, it is to be hoped 
that they received influences at the breast, that will always keep them out 
of one like the latter. If they were so unfortunate as to belong to the nume- 
rous family of Slacks, let it be impressed upon their minds that the cliaracter 
of a man is known by the appearance of the house he lives in. None but a 
" Slack farmer " ever lived through a lifetime in such a miserable dwelling 
place as some of our American farm-houses. 

There is a debasing influence about a mean house upon the minds of 
children ; while a good one, that has many points of beauty about it, makes 
them not only love to call it " home," but it always has an influence upon 
their minds to attract them away from places that might injuriously affect 
their morals, for it is a home that they love. Such a home also attracts 
proper associates for your children, to come and spend a pleasant winter 
evening, or a leisure day, under the parental influence, and will make 
them good men and women ; and all because you provided for your family 
such a home as all American farmers' families should enjoy. 

302. Inducements to Beautify Home. — One of the strongest and one of the 
most common inducements for the sons and daughters of farmers to leave the 
country for a city life, is the neglect of parents to beautify home, and teach 

276 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

cliildren to love it Lecause eventliin^ around it is more clieerful, more beau- 
tiful, more pleasant, more enticing than any other spot known to them. 
Instead of this, it is certainly true that a very large portion of our farm- 
honses are, in almost every respect, exactly such places as children of intclli- 
"cnce, who chance to see or read of the attractions of other places, are most 
anxious to leave. Ho prevent the exodus of your children, the moment they 
"•et old enough to liave ideas of their own, let it be one of the life studies of 
every parent to make the children sensible that their home is equal, if not 
superior, in all that serves to make life worth living for, to that of any other 
family in the same station of life. K your house is small, it is all the more 
easily painted, and made to wear an attractive outward appearance, and it is 
no good reason, because it is small, that its interior should be most incon- 
venient, uncomfortable and unattractive. Study to make your house such 
in every respect that your visitors will say, " "What a lovely place," and you 
will make your children contented and yourself happy, and all will exclaim, 
" There is no place like home." 

" More than building showy mansion, 

More than dress or fine array, 
More than domes or lofty steeples. 

More than station, power and sway. 
Make your home botli neat and tasteful, 

Bright and pleasant, always fair. 
Where each heart shall rest contented, 

Grateful for each beauty there." 

Is there any one tliought likely to be called up in after years so pleasing as 
the reminiscences of a happy childhood's home, when, like the freshness of a 
gunny May morning, we can call up the panorama of the wrens chirping on 
the peach trees under our windows, and the call of robin redbreast to his 
mate in the orchard, where the lambs are playing bopeep around the trees? 
Then there is the garden with its Spring and early Summer beauties, the 
breakfast table covered with a snowy cloth, and garnished with clean white 
ware, and provided with such bread and butter — ornamented, perhaps, 
with a fragrant bouquet, with the dew still glistening among the leaves, 
j;ist gathered by a lovely sister, with a thousand other nameless attractions 
that will float before the mind's eye, to remind it of the pleasures of home. 

AVe look upon a love of home as one of the virtues, that, as a people, the 
American farmers arc entirely too much neglecting. In fact, a dislike of 
home is much more common than the contrary, and an old homestead is 
parted from with as little reluctance as an old shoe, and very often for the 
same reason — because it is down at the heel. 

" Seek to make your home most lovely, 
Home should be a sniilin,;; spot ; 
, Such a home makes man the better 

In lofty mansion or a cot." 

As one of the easy means of beautifying your house, make it light ; 
"misery dwelleth in darkness." 

Seo. 14.] FARM-HOUSES. 277 

303. Reasons why a Dwelling should be Light. — ^There is a inania for dark 
rooms. People do not appear to be aware of the fact, tliat dark rooms are 
deleterious to health. Hear what Florence Nightingale says upon this sub- 
ject : 

" A dark house is almost always an imhealthy house, always an ill-aired 
house, always a dirty house. Want of light stops gfowth, and promotes 
scrofula, rickets, etc., among the children. People lose their health in a 
dark house, and if they get ill, they cannot get well again in it. Three, out 
of many ' negligences and ignorances ' in managing the health of houses 
generally, I will here mention as specimens. First, that the female in 
charge of any buildiug does not think it necessary to visit every hole and 
corner of it every day. IIow can she expect those who are under her to be 
more careful to maintain her house in a healthy condition than she who is 
in charge of it ? Second, that it is not considered essential to air, to sun, 
and to clean rooms Avhile uninhabited ; which is simply ignoring the first 
elementary notion of sanitary things, and laying the ground ready for all 
kinds of disease. Third, that the window, and one window is considered 
enough to air a room. Don't imagine that if you are in charge, and don't 
look to all these things yourself, those under you will be more careful than 
you are. It appears as if the part of the mistress was to complain of her 
servants, and to accept their excuse — not to show them how there need be 
neither complaints nor excuses." 

We beg of all who build houses, as well as those who keep them, to 
become aware of the fact, that there is a generous abundance of sunlight ii' 
the countr}', yet the observer is often convinced that a majority of country 
houses are but scantily provided with this first requisite of health and 

In reference to admitting light freely into our houses, the words of a writer 
on the subject are pertinent. He says: "From several years' observations 
in rooms of various sizes, used as manufacturing rooms, and occupied by 
females for twelve hours each day, I found that the workers who occupied 
those rooms which had large windows, with large panes of glass, in the four 
sides of the room, so that the rays of the run penetrated through the whole 
room during the whole day, were much more healthy than those who occu- 
pied rooms lighted from one side only, or rooms lighted through very small 
panes of glass." Notwithstanding the cheapness and facility with which 
glass can be obtained, there is a deficiency of windows even in what is 
usually considered the better class of American dwellings. Sitting rooms, 
cheerless enough in having one or two small windows, almost extinguished 
beneath heavy drapery of paper and cloth, are exceedingly common. For 
ordinary rooms, white cotton cloth fastened on rollers, as paper is usually 
lumg for window shades, is sufiicient for the purpose of screen — admitting 
at tlio same time a difi'used and softened light. 

Dark colors upon the walls, absorbing more or less of the prismatic rays, 
are also unfavorable in their effects. The writer just quoted found that in 

278 THE FARMERY. [Chap. Ill 

rooms of eqiiiil ventilation, light and drainage, sonic of which had white 
walls, and others yellow or buff-colored, the occuiuere were not equally 
cheerful and healthy. The workers in rooms with colored walls were all 
inclined to melancholy, and complained of pains in the forehead and eyes, 
and were often ill and unable to work. By having the color removed and 
replaced by wliitewash, uniform healtli and cheerfulness were ever after 
secured. In architecture, a course of progress is distinctly marked from the 
cave, the wigwam and hut of the savage, who rudely supplies his few Avants; 
from the tent and mosque of the Arab ; from the cots beneath the castle and 
beside the palace ; from the negro quarters to the mansion-house ; and we 
wish M'c could say, progressing upward to comfortable, light, cheerful, ele- 
gant homes for every American farmer. 

Let them learn that they cannot live rightly in dark dwellings. Tlic 
mother who, in the fulfillment of her office, preeminently receives and 
appropriates from all the life sustaining elements, suffers a twofold wrong, in 
the injury to herself and oflspring, by dwelling in darksome apartments ; and 
childhood in such homes is pale and puny — often worse — is squalid and most 
pitiably diseased. Tlie predominance of the chemical rays in Spring-time 
is undoubtedly one of the adaptations of this season to the young of animals 
w'hich then begin their existence, and it also exerts a decided influence upon 
our own physical health. The invalid desires the return of Spring, for he 
instinctively feels that nature without will then come to the aid of nature 
within ; and who, after the cold and lifeless Winter, does not love to seek the 
wind-sheltered nook, there to drink in the warm sunlight, and to receive upon 
the brow its life-giving blessing? Who has not felt the glorious influence of 
"bathing in the sunshine?" Then, we conjure you, let the sunshine into 
your house, and do not be afraid of letting in the air, day or night. 

An extraordinary fallacy is the dread of night air. What but night air 
can we breathe at night? The choice is between pure night air from 
without and foul night air from within. Most people prefer the latter. An 
unaccountable choice. What will they say, if it is proved to be true, that 
fully one-half of all the disease we sufier fi-om, is occasioned by people 
sleepmg with their windows shut ? An open window, most nights in the 
year, can never hurt any one. In sickness, air and light are both necessary 
for recovery-. In great cities, night air is often the best and purest air to be 
had in the twenty-four hours. I could better understand shutting the 
windows in towns, during the day, than during tlie night, for tlie sake of the 
sick. Tlie absence of smoke, the quiet, all tend to make night the best time 
for airing the patient. One of our highest medical authorities on consump- 
tion and climate, has declared that the air in London is never so good as after 
ten o'clock at night. Always air your room, then, from the outside air, if 
possible. Windows arc made to open, doors are made to shut — a truth 
which seems extremely difficult of application. 

304. The Location of a Farm-house. — Adaptability is the word that farm- 
ers should study, above all others, when about to build a house. It is the 

Sec. 14.] FARM-HOUSES. 279 

word that they study least, if we may judge from what may he seen in a 
majority of the farm-houses where we have travelled — that is, from Quebec 
to New Orleans, and from Florida to Mackinaw. E\-ery\vhere is seen the 
lack of adaptability to the purpose, either in size, form or location. Not one 
farm-house in ten is located upon the farm as well as it could have been. In 
all the eastern, western and northern States, the farmery is found, nine times 
out often, upon some public road, without reference to the convenience of 
farming operations ; and frequently, in all respects, is very inconvenient. 

The location of the farm-house, and tlie arrangement of all the buildings 
connected with the farmery, require the exercise of good judgment, fine 
taste, carefully exercised skill, all combined, more than any other single 
operation of a wliole lifetime, because it is not only for the lifetime of the 
builder, but succeeding generations. 

In tlie first place, the top of the hill, or highest point of a hilly farm, never 
sliould be selected for the dwelling of the farmer ; such a site is only fit for 
tlie residence of the lord of the manor, who intends to carry on farming by 
a tenant, or hired farmer, who will occupy the house of the formery proper. 
His residence is not the farm-house; it is the mansion of the proprietor, 
and may be built to suit the owner's taste, if he has any. Our remarks are 
intended to apply to farm-houses — the dwellings of that numerous class in 
x\.nierica who own the soil they till, partly with their own hands, and partly 
with those of hirelings. 

305. Size and Form of a Farm-house. — It is not size that makes a dwell- 
ing-house attractive, beautiful, or convenient. It is adaptability to the 
purpose for which it was desigued. Indeed, a house often has an impleasant 
appearance on account of its size, because it gives the mind an impression 
that it is iinnecessarily large for the purpose for which it is designed. 

It is necessary that some farm-houses should be large — that is, afford a 
great deal of room ; but they never should appear large, for if they do they 
almost inevitably appear uncouth. 

Make just as much of the room as possible, on the same level. A farm- 
house with twelve rooms, should have eight of them on the lower floor. 
Never have a basement kitchen. 

No woman, during the years of child-bearing, who docs much of her own 
work, or oversees it when done by servants, should be compelled to go iip 
and down stairs every hour of the day. Ilcr sitting, or fiimily-room, bed- 
room, dining-room, kitchen, wash-room, wood-room, well and cistern, shoidd 
all be on the same level, or with a variation of not more than two or three 
steps. You cannot be a good man if you compel your wife to run up and 
down stairs to do her every-day housework. You are not a good man, nor a 
man of taste and good judgment, if you build your house unnecessarily large, 
because it will cause your wife many weary, extra steps to keep it tidy and 
always swept and garnished as you should be proud to have it appear to 
strangers. You are unworthy the name of man if you keep your wife toil- 
ing in a house entirely too small for the necessities of your family, or in one 


wretchedly ill-adapted to their wants, one single year after you are ahlc to 
jirovide a better one. 

306. What constitutes a fonvrnifiit Farin-house> — We can only speak in 
general terms of the plans of farm-houses, hccause every plan is modified Ly 
location and the wants of the proprietor ; but we can give an opinion that 
will be some guide to the new beginner in farm life, or one about to construct 
a farm-house. 

We will suppose a farm of one or two hundred acres, and a family of four 
adults and four children, besides the necessary hirelings, which in most of 
the Northern States, are domiciled in the family dwejling. It should, there- 
fore, have a family-room located in the most pleasant part of the house, 
where the evenings, and all other leisure Incurs, are, or should be, spent; 
where the young mother devotes many days and nights of toil to her 
children; where all the family feel "at home," more than in any other 

Adjoining this room there should be a large family bed-room, with conve- 
niences for warming it, so that it can be used as a sick-room when necessary. 
There should also be a parlor, or spare-room ; for it is not always desirable 
to introduce company into the family-room. Tliere should be a dining-room, 
large enough not only to accommodate the family, but, if necessary, a dozen 
guests. This room should be so arranged that upon occasion, particularly in 
Winter, it can be used for a part of the cooking. This would often save the 
necessity of kindling a fire in the kitchen in a cold Winter morning, to get 
an early breakfast. The farm-house kitchen, where so much of woman's 
work must be done, should be a large, cheerful, light apartment, with all the 
conveniences that modern ingenuity has made to facilitate labor. It should 
also, above all other considerations, be so ventilated that there would be no 
necessity for opening a door or window to let out tiie smoke of a broiling 
steak, or that of the buckwheat cake griddle. Tlie best cooking apparatus is 
a good range, permanently set in the chimney. One of suitable size for such 
a family as we have indicated, will cost about thirty dollars without cook- 
ing utensils. The two ovens of a range obviate the necessity of a brick oven 
in the kitchen chimney. It will be convenient to have such an oven in the 
wash-room, which should be attached to every farm-house kitchen. This 
should have an open fire-place, a kettle set in an arch, a brick floor, a large 
sink, and a pump which draws soft water from the well or cistern. Divided 
off from this wash-room, there should be a large store-room, for such coarse 
things as barrels of flour, fruit, fresh meat, and articles of kitchen furniture 
not in every-day use. Beyond the wash-room, there should be a room for 
fuel ; and the best of all, when it can be had at a moderate cost, is anthracite 
coal. Opening out of the kitchen there should be a pantry, large enough, 
and with conveniences to store all the groceries aiul food in every-day use. 
In this, or some other convenient place, be sure to have a refrigerator; and 
adjoining the kitchen, there should be a milk and butter room, where nothing 
else is ever kept. If cheese is nuule, it must have a separate room. Butter 

Sio. 14.] FAKM-HOUSES. 281 

and cheese must not be stored togetlier. The way to the ceUar should ojjen 
out of the kitchen. We do not advocate large cellars under the house, 
because they are apt to become the storehouses of a vast amount of stuff tha 
would be more fittingly stored in some out-building, or an out-cellar. Cellars 
are generally kept in a way that seriously endangers the health of the family. 
If the house is set as it should be, well up from the ground, and ventilated 
under the floor, it is better calculated to promote health than a cellar. 
If the nature of the soil is very dry, the space under the wash-room may 
be used for a store-room, or even milk-room, properly ventilated. Every 
kitchen should have one or more closets, upon the shelves of which the many 
little things can be kept, each in its place, and all in order. In the dining- 
room there should be two closets : one for dishes in overy-day use, and one 
in which anything not always, but occasionally, wanted upon the table, and 
anything desirable to be locked iip, can be safely stored. 

There should be a large closet for the use of the sitting-room ; and there 
must be such a one in the fixmily bed-room. In fact, this should be a double 
room, a smaller one attached to the larger for the small children ; and tiiis 
should have its closet, or clothes-press, that children might be early taught to 
put every article of clothing in its proper place. 

The larger children, and other adults, should have large, airy bed-rooms 
up stairs ; and no farm-house will be complete without two, at least, " spare 

307. How to Build a Convenient House. — A pleasant-looking, unostenta- 
tious farm-house, to contain the rooms indicated, may bo of the following 
dimensions. A two-story portion, 34 by 24 feet, would give half of the 
parlor 16 by 16 feet, and a spare bed-room 10 by 10 feet, and a hall 6 by 16 
feet ; a stairway 3^ by 10 feet ; a space for pantry, or closets, 2~ by 10 feet ; 
a family, or sitting-room, 13 by 18 feet, and two bed-rooms, 10 by 11 and 
8 by 11 feet. This building may be roofed to pitch either way. The other 
half of the parlor, not comprised in this space, is to be gained by an attach- 
ment, 8 by 16 feet, one story high, attached to that side to balance the 
piazza, giving the house more of a cottage look, as well as being less expen- 
sive, -and making better rooms on the second floor. 

Attached to the main building, a wing or L part, a story and a half high, 
will give a dining-room 12 by 18 feet, a kitchen 16 by 18 feet, a wash-room 
12 by 12 feet, a store-room 6 by 12 feet, a pantry 6 Ijy 8 feet, a milk-room 
6 by 6 feet, and passage and stairway to the half story, which will make good 
lodging-rooms for hirelings. 

The fuel-room may be a separate building, and although used for such a 
purpose, may be made M'ith a finish to correspond with the house, and set 
forward flush with the piazza, which is to extend along the front of this wing, 
and will form a good termination to the walk, besides being convenient and 
ajiproachable from all parts of the house under cover. Tliis piazza, which is 
6 by 46 feet, and one 8 by 16 feet adjoining, should, if possible, have a south- 
eastern exposure, which will make it pleasant to all the rooms most used. 

282 TUE FAKMERY. [Chap. JII. 

We do not give this as a superlatively excellent plan of a farni-lionse 
but one that would be convenient, comfortable, inexpensive, and capable of 
being erected in two or three parts, if necessary, at different periods, and 
upon the cheap plan described in No. 350. 

The advantage that we claim for this over some other plans is, that if 
built in parts, at different periods, according to the circumstances of the 
proprietor, each portion may be inade to appear, and serve the purpose of, a 
complete house. Thus, the part 24 by 3-i feet, with the little wings, one 
forming half tlie parlor, and the other the piazza, will be a neat looking 
house, and a comfortable one for a small family ; using the sitting-room as a 
kitchen, and one bed-room as a pantry. Then the dining-room, kitchen, 
wash-room, etc., might be added, one at a time, as ability or necessity 
prompts. Or, the part containing the kitchen, could be built first, and 
M'ould make a tolerable house by itself. 

Another advantage of the plan is, that the rooms are all liglit and airy ; 
every room, except one small bedroom, has windows upon two or more sides, 
and the whole house will appear to every passer-by, as though built for use, 
rather than show. It is a great convenience to have a house so constructed 
that strangers can find some other than the front door entrance. 

The space in front of the piazza should be a plat of shrubbery, which 
would form a partial screen, and in front of that the flower garden. There 
may be a door out of the dining-room into a garden upon that side. 

In arranging the plan of this house, the object has been to place the least 
used rooms in the house, the parlor and spare bod-rooms, upon the right and 
left-hand side of the hall, as you enter the front door from the portico. At 
the other end of the hall is the family room, and large and small bed-room. 
The stairway is situated, not for show in the hall, but convenient to all parts 
of the house, running up at a right angle from the hall, between the sitting- 
room and spare bed-room. The sitting-room is situated in the centre of the 
house, convenient to all the rooms, warm in winter, airy in summer, and 
easy of approach. If the ground suits, you may drop the L floor two feet 
below the main part, and set projecting beyond that part six feet, it allows a 
window there, and breaks the force of the wind upon that end of the sitting- 
room, and also gives room at the other end for a window and glass door ont 
upon the large piazza. The common entrance to the house will be upon that 
piazza, and from that into the sitting-room, dining-room, or kitclicn. 

There was a plan, published by G. C. Uouse, of Lowville, N. Y., in the 
Country Gentleman, so novel in its form, and apparently so convenient, 
that we consider it Avorthy a notice in this connection. The following is 
•what he says of his plan. 

" In the plan submitted, we flatter ourselves that some improvements 
have been reached, when we take into consideration convenience, space, 
accessibility, the ease with which the hot air passages from the furnace can 
be aiTanged for so many rooms, all within a few feet of the body of the fur- 
nace ; and each door within a few steps of the main stair-case. From the 

Sec. 14.] FARM-HOUSES. 283 

peculiar form the centre of the house is at once reached on entering the front 
door. The second story is quite similar to the first, closets occupj'ing the 
spaces over the library and pantry, and a fine balcony over the veranda, 
reached through glass doors. 

" To meet the full requirements which were had in view, in this arrange- 
ment, a site should be selected having a southern or eastern exposure if in 
the countiy, and the building set with both full fronts to the street, so that 
the veranda or front door will have a direct front aspect. If, however, the 
location be in city or village, it would be desirable to procure a lot having 
two fronts, if possible looking easterly and southerly, and place the building 
with a front to each road, the front door looking toward the angle of tlie 

308. Ventilation of DweIIings> — In whatever form, or upon whatever plan 
you build, do not forget the necessity of ventilation. Our dwellings are often 
charnel houses. The very first necessity of every human being — pure air- — ■ 
is rarely regarded in their constructiou. Tlie air actually inhaled steals in 
at crevices and crannies, felon-like, because it cannot be shut out. Only the 
defects of our architecture prevent our dying of a vitiated, poisoned, mephitic 
atmosphere, from which the vital element has been exhausted. Most men, 
including architects, seem ignorant of the fact that the atmosphere is a com- 
bination of different gases, only one of which is wholesome and life-giving, 
and that this is consumed in the lungs upon inhalation, leaving the residue 
to be expelled as a poison. The church, lecture-room or other structure, 
with doors and windows closed, with no provision for ventilation, soon 
becomes a slaughter-pen, and ought to be closed by the public authorities. 

Our manufactories and school-houses are nearly all disgraceful to their 
owners and architects in regard to ventilation. They arc often divided into 
rooms less than ten feet high, each thickly stowed with human beings, who 
breathe and work and sweat in an atmospjiere overheated and filled with 
grease, wool or cotton waste, leather or cloth, and the poisonous refuse 
■ expelled from human lungs, Avhich together are enough to incite a plague, 
and are, in fact, the primary cause of nearly all the fevers, dysenteries, con- 
sumptions, etc., by which so many graves are peopled, x^o factory should 
be permitted to commence operations, nor school opened, imtil it shall 
have been inspected by some competent public officer^ and certified to be 
thoroughly provided with ventilators — not windows, which raay be opened, 
but iu a cold or stormy day very certainly will not be — but apertures for 
the ingress of fresh air, and others for the egress of vitiated air, both out of 
the reach of ignorance and defying the eftbrts of confirmed depravity of the 
senses to close them. 

Our bed-rooms are generally fit only to die in. The best are those of a few 
of the intelligent and affluent, which are carefully ventilated ; next to these 
come those of the cabins and rudest fiirm-liouses, with an inch or two of 
vacancy between the chimney and the roof, and with cracks on every side, 
through which the stars may be seen. The ceiled and j)lastered bed-rooms, 

28-t THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

wliorc too many of the middle c-las.s :iro lodged, with no apertures for the 
ingress or egress of air but the door and whidows, are horrible. Kine-tentlis 
of their occupants rarely open a window unless compelled by cxceBsivc heat, 
and very few are careful even to leave the door ajar. To bleep in a tight 
six-by-ten bed-room, with no aperture admitting air, is to court the ravages 
of pestilence and speedy death. 

Our railroad cars and steamboat berths are atrociously devoid of ventila- 
tion. A journey is taken with far less fatigue, and more expeditiously now 
than it was thirty years ago, but with far greater risk and harm to health. 
Tliere are probably ten thousand passenger cars now running in the United 
States, whereof not more than one hundred are decently supplied with fresh 
air. Most of tliese, wherein forty or fifty persons are expected to sit all day 
and dose all niglit, ought to be indicted as nuisances — they are fit only for 
coffins. Tlie men M'ho make them probably know no better ; but those who 
buy and run them have not even that poor excuse. Tiiey know that they are 
undermining constitutions and destroying lives ; they know that ample means 
of arresting these frightful woes are at command; yet they will not adoj)t 
them because they cost something. 

If people only knew how many thousands of lives are annually sacrificing, 
how many hundreds of thousands are now suftering from fevers and other 
maladies which have their origin in the inhaling of noxious air, the excite- 
ment and alarm on this subject would work a revolution in our style of 

When we lived in old-style houses, with large open fire-places, like tlic one 
mentioned in the next paragraph, there was no need of being careful to build 
air-passages in the walls of the liouse for ventilation, fur the " fire-place, big 
enough to roast an ox," gave the most complete kind of ventilation. 

It is of the utmost importance, particularly in malarious districts, tliat 
houses should be so constructed that a free circulation of air can be had 
through all the rooms. In the plan described in 305 this fact has been kept 
in view. With slight modifications, the plan will answer for a liouso either 
at the north or the south. At the south tiie rooms would be made larger, and 
the fuel-room would probably be substituted for the kitchen. Frequently, 
the kitchen of a planter's house is placed several rods distant, without any 
covered way between. 

309. An Old-Style Farm-house Kitchen in New Kn.«laH4l. — A picture of 
one of tliese scenes of comfort has lately fallen under my observation. 
What can be more cheerful and pleasant than the view of a farmer's kitchen, 
taken during the evening meal of a cold Autumn day ? It is a picture of tlie 
calm happiness of rural life. 

The kitclien of the old-style farm-house of New England is not the scullery, 
or mere cooking-place of some modern house — a dirty hole or comfortless 
out-rooin or sort of human bake-oven, where the cook is almost as much 
cooked as the food. No, it is a room perliaps 24 feet long and IG wide, well 
lighted, warm, neat, and cvery-way comfortable. Upon one side there is a 

Sbo. 14.] FARM-HOUSES. 285 

fire-place large enougli to roast a whole ox, iu wliicli a great fire of logs sends 
up a cbeerful blaze, lighting up the whole room so its brightness might be 
seen through its great uncurtained M'indows, like a beacon light to the 
traveller as he comes down tlie slope of yonder hill two miles away, and 
makes him involuntarily thank God, in anticipation, for the good things 
spread out upon the great table standing between the window and the fire. 

Let us take note of tlie old-fashioned meal. At tlie head of the table sits 
a matron of some sixty summers — though in appearance tliere is nothing of 
llie winter of old age about her. Iler dress is a gown of home-spun worsted, 
well fortified Nvith flannels from the same manufactory, that bid defiance to 
the Autumn winds of a rigorous climate. The small, neat cap of white gauze, 
and the shoes and stockings of this woman, were made iu pursuance of the 
best medical recipe ever written : " Keep the head cool, and the feet dry and 
warm ;" for the stockings are the product of busy fingers at moments idle 
with many housewives, and the shoes of stout leather were made for service, 
and the cap is a mere ornament — a snow-wreath among raven locks — and 
her face is the indication of health and happiness. 

Upon her right hand sits the farmer, dressed in a butternut-colored coat, 
blue pants, buff vest, white linen shirt — every article home made — stout 
boots and black silk cravat — for he has been to town, and this is his holiday 
suit. Below him sit Jedediah, Ebenezer, Abram, and Solomon, all economi- 
cal names, for they can be shortened in common use to Jed, Eb, Ab, and Sol. 
Two of these wear the check woollen winter frocks of New England farmers 
— the others are in round jackets; they are schoolboys. Upon the left sit 
Mary, Adeline, and Mehitable, pictures of real beauty and health. The 
eldest is " dressed up ;" she has been to town with her ijxther ; she has a 
gown of " bough ten stuff;" around her neck is a bow of colored lamb's wool, 
knitted by her own hands, fastened in the thfoat by grandmotlier's silver 
brooch. The other two are in check woolen, winch was spun, woven, and 
colored, and made up under the same roof. 

Further down the table are three athletic young men, day laborers on the 
farm — sons of ncigliboring farmers — one of whom is eyeing the charms of 
sweet Mary witli an expression easily read by a good physiognomist. The 
gi-oup is completed by the schoolmaster, a young man with a glowing eye 
w'lich speaks of intellect tliat will tell upon the world some day with as 
much force as though he had not been obliged to obtain liis education by 
summer labor and winter teaching. lie is one of New England's rising 

Tlio meal is for men who toil. At one end of the table stands a pot, of 
:unple dimensions, smoking from the oven flanking the fire-place, of the most 
excellent of New England cookeries, " a dish of baked beans," crowned with 
a great square piece of salt fat pork, crisped and rich. Lower down a broad 
pewter platter holds the remains of the " boiled victuals" tliat formed the 
dinner — beef, pork, potatoes, cabbage, beets, and turnips — a pile that might 
rival a small hay-cock in size and shape — a plate of rye and indian bread, 

280 TUE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

cold, and another made of rye flour are untouched, for a great loaf, just 
drawn from the oven, nicely browned and hot, is ofTerod in great broken 
pieces to tempt the appetite to one of tlie richest repasts ever given to an 
epicure. By the side of tlic old lady stands a black carthem teapot, the 
contents of which are freely oflered, l)ut only accepted by two of the men. 
as the rich ncM' milk, or the hearty old cider is preferred as a beverage, 
morning, noon and night, by those old-fashioned, hearty laborers. "We . 
must not forget the never-failing accompaniment of the evening meal at 
this season of the year in New England, for it is New England's proudest 
dish, the golden pumpkin, sweetest pie. 

God being thauked for his great bounties after the close of the happy meal, 
all are drawn into a circle around the great iire-place. Father is finishing ofl' 
an axehelve ; Jed is mending a pair of boots ; and one of the hired men, 
upon the other side of the same bench, is repairing a wagon harness — both 
using the same tools. The other two are employed, one shelling corn and 
the other helping Mary to peel pumpkins, which arc cut in slices and hung 
upon poles overliead. This is Mary's accepted lover. Happy hearts and 
blessed industry ! Ab and Sol are engaged with the schoolmaster around the 
big table, lighted by a home-made candle ; they are studying geography, 
writing, spelling, and arithmetic— fitting themselves for future statesmen. 
Mother is making a new coat for one of the boys, Ada is ironing at a side- 
table, and Hetty is washing the supper dishes at another. There are two 
other members of this family group — the eat occupies the top of the blue 
dye-tub which stands in one corner of the fire-place, and old Bose sleeps 
quietly under the table. 

Directl V, and before any sound is audible to human ear, Bose^ gets up, 
walks out into the long entry, and gives a loud, sharp bark at the outside 
door, and stands waiting the approaching step. Soon satisfied that the new 
comer is a friend, he retires again to his repose, and three or four boys, who 
look as though they might be brothers to those already described, so much 
are tiicy dressed alike, enter and draw around the table with the others and 
the school in aster. These are from a neighboring farm, sons of a widow, who 
have till now been so mucli engaged with the labors of the farm that they 
have been unable to attend the school in the daytime, but are determined to 
lose none of the evening opportunities to keep along with the class. They 
will make honest, intelligent, industrious fanners. 

Tlie oM folks welcome them heartil}-, and tlie young ones are all rejoiced 
at their arrival. The old lady inquires why in the world their mother did 
not come along; and Mary, the kind-hearted Mary, is so sorry to Uear that 
it is because Sarah is not so well, and mother is very busy getting tlieir new 
clothes done so that they can go to school as soon as they finish picking 
apples. " John," says she, " let us hurry and get through our stent and we 
will go over to the widow's; and I will help her with her sewing; yon will 
read for the amusement of poor Sarah, for an hour or two." " If that is tlie 
case," says father, laying down his axe handle, " my good children, you shall 

Sec. U.] farm-houses. 287 

go DOW ; I will finish your work." " And Mary, my dear girl, don't go 
empty handed," says mother ; " you know from e.xperience how sweet little 
delicacies, brought by friendly hands to the side of a sick-bed, are to a poor 

" Hetty, my dear, if you have done your dishes, you must get your cards 
and make a few rolls, for 1 am quite out of grey yarn, and M-e must have 
some more stockings in the work. Old man, don't cut that pumpkin too 
thick. — Ada, daughter, get a plate of doughnuts and some of those nice fall 
pijjpins and set on the table ; I guess these boys can eat a few while they are 
cyphering. I do wonder if you have got light enough. Sol, get another 
candle, I am sure such industrious boys ought to have all the light they 

TIius, my readers, I have given you a slight outline of a farmer's house, 
such as it used to be, such as it might be, and such as it always should be, 
and such as, I am proud to say, many an American farmer can boast of even 
in these degenerate days of " boughten stuff gowns " and lack-a-daisical 
lounging of farmer's girls, who are miserable and tired of nothing to do. 
How do you like the picture ? If well, imitate it. It is a happiness easily 

It is easy to imagine the sun'oundings of such a home as the one described 
above. And as tliere is probably no better exponent of the farmer's life 
than the farmer's liome, we propose to present the portrait of a home quite 
in contrast to the preceding one. We are sorry that such as tliis are altoge- 
ther too common. Here is the sketch : 

A square brown house; a chimney coming out of the middle of a roof; 
not a tree nearer than the orchard, and not a flower at the door. At one end 
projects a kitchen; from the kitchen projects a wood-shed and wagon-cover, 
occupied at night by hens ; beyond the wood-shed a hog-pen, fragrant and 
musical. Proceeding no further in this direction, we look directly across the 
road, to where the barn stands, like the hull of a great black ship of the line, 
with its portholes spread threateningly upon the fort opposite, out of one of 
which a horse has thrust his head for the puqjose of examining the streufth 
of the works. An old ox-sled is turned up against the wall close by, where 
it will have the privilege of rotting. This whole establishment was contrived 
with a single eye to utility. The barn Avas built in such a manner that its 
deposits might be convenient to the road which divides the farm, while the 
sty was made an attachment of the house for convenience in feeding its 

We enter the house at the back door, and find the family at dinner in the 
kitchen. A kettle of soap-grease is stewing upon the stove, and the fumes 
of this, mingled with those that were generated by boiling the cabbage 
wliicli v\'e see upon the table, and by perspiring men in shirt-sleeves, and bv 
boots that have forgotten, or do not care where they have been, make the air 
anything but agreeable to those who are not accustomed to it. This is the 
place where the family live. They cook everything here for themselves an3 



[CnAP. III. 

tlioir Iiogs. They eat evoiy meal liere. They sit here every eveniug, and 
liere they receive their friends. Tlie women in this kitchen toil incessantly, 
from the time tliey rise in the morning, until they go to bed at night. Here 
man and woman, sons and daughters, live in the belief that work is the 
great tiling, that efficiency in work is the crowning excellence of manhood 
and womanhood, and willingly go so far into essential self-debasement some- 
times as to contemn beauty, and those who love it, and to glory above all 
things in brute strength, and brute endurance. 

We do not expect to see every farm-liouse a domestic paradise; but we do 
contend that one contrived upon the moderate plan described in Xo. 305 will 
be likely to produce a better race of men and women than such a home as 
tlie one last mentioned in this paragraph. 

Having occupied as mucli space as we can afford to give to the dwellings, 
let us now look at some of the surroundings necessaiy to make up a complete 


"N a cold climate, two of the most important requi- 
ites of a farmd\ouse are good cellars and good chim- 
neys. In all the great farming region nortli of Lat. 40°, 
L\ there are nights almost every "Winter in wliich the tliermo- 
meter falls 10° below 0° of Farenheit ; and .in some of the 
elevated portions of New England it sometimes falls 40° 
below zero. Tliere warm cellars are a necessity. Every- 
where chimneys are so, for there is not a greater source of 
vexation about a farm-house than a smoky chimney. For- 
merly, ice was looked upon as a luxury merely ; it is so no 
longei'. Hence we devote space to give tlie best information 
we can obtain, how to build an ice-house and preserve its 

310. Cellars— Where and How to Build them. — As we luive 
already intimated, we do not approve of extensive cellars imder dwellings. 
As a general thing, in all damp soils, like millions of acres of the western 
prairie lands, cellars, even when kept with the utmost care, are not healthy ; 
and when kept as we have often seen them, dripping with moisture, and 
frequently with water standing several inches deep, they are positive conta- 
gion breeders. In all such situations we reconnnend cave ccllai"s, built on 
the level of the surface. An excellent one which vcc built near the kitchen 
door, S by 20 feet, was made of ciglit-inch brick walls, seven feet high, with 
an entry and double doors at one end, and double windows at the other. At 
first our design was to arch this over and make a grassy mound ; but upon 


second thought, we earthed it up as high as the top of the wall and then put 
on a building for a smoke-house, the fire for which was built at the bottom and 
carried up in a flue. "Where there is a hillside, a cave cellar may be made 
more easily, though we did not find it a serious job to heap up the earth from 
the level ground, taking care to slope it off so as not to leave any noticeable 
depression. Such a cellar is very convenient, dry, pleasant, and not 
unhealthy. K built where a building over it would be unsightly, or not 
needed, it may be arched and covered with earth and made quite an orna- 
ment of the house surroundings. 

Wherever a cellar is it should have as uniform a temperature as possible, 
the year through ; it should never sink much below 38° Fahrenheit, nor rise 
above 50°, and it should be always moist, yet never wet. It should be also 
well ventilated, and that should be by a flue of the chimney, constructed 
specially for that object, when the cellar is under the dwelling. 

311. — Chimneys— How to Build thenii — A new combination of chimney and 
ventilator has been patented by a Philadelphian (Mr. Leeds), and is very 
strongly recommended by many who have tried it in that city. The brick 
wall of this chimney is without flues, no matter how large the house, but the 
smoke is carried up, say half the height of the building, through a cast-metal 
box or square flue in the centre of the stack, while pure, cold air is intro- 
duced at the bottom of the building into the chimney outside of the flue. 
The heat of the flue causes this air to ascend with great rapidity and force, 
carrying the smoke with it from their juncture at the top of the box, and 
rendering it wholly impossible that the chimney should ever smoke. Venti- 
lation is effected by valves opening from the external or air-chimney into the 
rooms, so as to throw out a column of air, warmed by its contact with the 
flue, into the room near its floor, while another valve near the ceiling sucks in 
and carries off the impure air— the draught of the heated flue being aided by 
the influx of heated air through the lower valve into the room. This arrange- 
ment, it is claimed, saves the expense of brick flues, saves heat, which other- 
wise passes off uselessly through the chimney, insures a thorough ventilation 
without trouble or cost, and affords a perfect security against fires from 
defective or overheated chimneys, through the gradual charring of the 
wooden beams or other timbers imbedded or ending against the chimney. 
A connection with the cellar, by an opening into such a flue, would draw off 
all the foul air that would be generated in any but a very badly kept cellar ; 
besides proving a valuable safeguard against the carelessness of carpenters, 
who do sometimes place wood in fearfully dangerous places. If all stove- 
heated houses had such means of ventilation, it would do something toward 
bringing back the same state of health that existed in connection with open 

The comfort of a dwelling depends in a great degree upon its having good 
chimneys, always maintaining a current of air upward within, and secured 
externally against the entrance of water. Form, size, location and workman- 
ship, all unite in producing a good or bad article. 


290 THE FARMERY. [Chap. IH. 

The ridge or liighest part of the roof is the best place for the exit of the 
chimney, for it is less liable to those sudden gusts of " blowing down 
chimney " than when in proximity to higher objects. In this place too, the 
roof is more easily rendered tight and secure against wet. In small houses 
with but one chimney we need not seek any other place for it. In buildings 
larger, where several chimneys are needed, keep the same object in view, 
and approach as near to it as possible. In brick houses, if tlie chimney 
is built into an exterior wall, it will sometimes fail to draAV well, because 
the air outside of the house cools the warm ascending current within the 
flue. If the flue is in a south wall, the heat of the sun sometimes aids tlie 

The size of the chimney is also important. TIic modern fashion is quite 
too small for utility. Economy of space and a desire to conceal entirely an 
object merely of utilit}^ have caused its dimensions to be contracted until a 
few months' deposit of soot entirely chokes the passage. While we no longer 
need the huge '• good old-fashioned chimneys " of former days, the flues should 
not be contracted so as to hinder the current of smoke, which needs a channel 
as smooth as for the flow of water. We often find the curves, where the 
most room is needed, half filled with mortar carelessly dropped and loosely 
adhering to the bricks. By making a proj^er table above the roof, it can be 
made water-proof; but tliis, if not well done at first, always proves a 
vexatious and difficult matter to accomplisli. Mortar, putty, cement, and 
I)aint, in all their variations, have been tried with various success. An old 
grafter recommends for this purpose " grafting wax," as the cheapest, surest, 
and most durable application. But we say, build so that they will all be 

Always begin j-our chimneys from a good foundation on the earth. He 
who builds a small "stem" in the garret, builds a large nuisance for 
himself. The soot tea, black and penetrating, will leak out to discolor the 
walls, the gathered soot and ashes cannot be removed, and the thing proves 
a chimney only in name and in its appearance on the roof 

All unused stove-pipe holes and fire-places should be closed to secure the 
best draught. 

Where there are two chimneys in the same building one will sometimes 
overpower the other, with the most provoking results. This is a contingency 
to be regarded in forming the plan. 

Tiie top of the chimney may be full size and open where there is no 
danger of down currents ; otherwise it should be arched or provided with 
some cap or ventilator of sheet iron. Those who have built will see the 
importance of these hints; those who are to build, will do well to regard 

312. Ice-IIonseSi — ?^cxt to a good cellar, an ice-house is a necessity of a 
farm-house. Here we can do without an ice-house, and north of latitude 40° 
we cannot do without a cellar — at least, not comfortably ; and, in our 
opinion, any family who have once enjoyed the comforts of an ice-house. 


will ever after think that thej cannot live quite comfortably without 

"We have often witnessed in good farm-houses the necessity of a suppl}-^ of 
ice, in the character of the butter placed upon the table — even among those 
who know how to make good butter, we find a quality far inferior to the 
samples made where there are cool spring houses or an abundant supply of 
ice. TVe give a few other reasons iu favor of every farmer's having an 
icehouse, and we beg farmers to read and consider them well, and then we 
will tell them how to build one. 

313. Reasons why Farmers should have Ice-Houses. — It is August ; hot, 
faint and exhausted, the farmer comes from the field so thirsty that he 
cannot satisfy himself with water from a well so shallow that the burning 
rays of the sun have reached the surface and penetrated into the water, 
warming it almost hot enough for dish-water. Some draw their water 
from springs, and others from cisterns. It is only here and there that 
we find a spring that comes gushing to the surface, or that feeds a deep Avell 
with water, cool enough to satisfy the over-heated, thirsty harvester. How 
refreshing such water is, not only to drink, but to lave the face and hands 
and breast, before sitting down to a meal, or lying down to repose to recupe- 
rate tired nature. We have no doubt that the laving is far bettor than the 
drinking, and it should always be the first step taken to quench thirst. 

Again, how refreshing is a cool drink with the lunch in the field, but how 
difiicult to have it there, at only half a mile from the coldest spring or well. 
How easy it would be if there was an ice-house on the farm. A piece 
that could be carried in one hand, wrapped in a blanket, would be large 
enough to cool the drink of a dozen men all the forenoon, and it would 
invigorate them more than a bottle of rum. Ice, taken in moderate quan- 
tity, is a tonic, and serves to keep the system in such healthy condition, that 
food gives it more strength. Simply, then, upon economic principles, every 
farmer should have an ice-house. A humane man should have an ice-house. 
It adds to the health and comfort of his summer laborers. Let him think of 
it now — think of it iu August, think of it while sighing, Oh, for a cool 
drink ! Oh, for a cup of ice-water ! 

The stingy man, the veriest old hunks, who is never quite satisfied with 
the amount of labor tliat he gets out of his workmen in the harvest-field, 
should have an ice-house ; it will enable him to get more work out of them. 
Now is the very time to tliink of this ;i'particularly in the heat of the har- 

The man that knows tliat fresh meat is not only moi-e palatable in the 
heat of Summer, but that there is a positive economy in feeding his family 
and extra laborers upon sweet grass-fed beef and mutton, and upon cold milk 
and sweet, hard butter ; and that a man who does feed his day-laborers so can 
always get better men and more work for his money than liis neighbor who 
lives upon salt junk and rum, will have an ice-house ; and if he has not got 
one he will make up his mind, before the present Summer is over, that as 

292 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

soon as tliere is a lull in the work of haying and harvest he will set about 
building an ice-house, wliich lie can do with his own hands and common 
farm-laborers ; and with less than the work of one hand and team during a 
week in winter, he can lay up such a store of ice that he need never drink 
warm water, nor eat soft butter, nor fear to kill a sheep lest the meat should 
spoil before it could be eaten. 

Let all remember this fiict : Ice is not a luxury; that is, one that can be 
dispensed with, and may be indulged in only by the wealthy ; but one of 
the most economical things that can be provided for family use. It is an 
article that no farmer can afford to do without. 

Now, having given arguments enough to convince any man that he 
should build an ice-house, we proceed to tell him how to do it. 

314. Uow to Build an Ice-HousCt — An ice-house is not the complicated, 
costly structure that some people appear to think it is. Quite the contrary, 
it is one of the easiest and most simple things to build, needing very little 
mechanical skill, and being quite inexpensive. All of the work about an 
ice-house can be done by any farmer of ordinary Yankee capacity in the use 
of such a set of carpenters' tools as every farmer should keep. In the first 
lilace, it is not necessary to build an ice-house under ground, although in 
dry, gravelly soil it may be built so at less expense than on the surface, and 
it is easier filled. A hill-side is the most convenient location, with the gable 
of one end above the surface, in which liavc an opening to put in ice — the 
other end, to a level with the floor, being exposed — through which we would 
have the ordinary entrance by double doors. In such a situation we would 
use broken stone, making a hollow, grouted wall ; and the same kind of wall 
might be built on level ground ; and a very good, cheap, durable wall it is. 
Brick or stone may also be used for tli'e walls, according to the fancy of the 
builder, always making them hollow, and the outer and inner part of the 
wall absolutely as air-tight as could be made with brick and mortar. 

Tiie cheapest, easiest and quickest constructed ice-house, and one all-suffi- 
cient for the purpose, is built of wood ; and the money difference in cost 
placed at interest will more than keep the wooden house in repair and gool 
as brick or stone. So we will give directions for building a plaiu, cheap, 
common, rough-board, farm ice-house, large enough for all ordinary private 

Select a spot of ground convenient to the kitchen door, and remove the soil 
and put coarse gravel or sand in itj place, with drains leading away from 
the eaves, so constructed that it will be absolutely impossible for water 
to stand under or around the building. Lay down two-inch plank six inches 
wide, bedded their thickness in the sand, for sills; tlie end ones eight feet 
long and side ones thirteen feet. Cut your studs off square, eight feet long, 
of any size or width that you can get in the refuse heap at the nearest saw- 
mill or lumber-yard, so that you can get one straight side, and set them up 
face side in, and toe-nail them to the sill, with an inch-board on top for a 
plate, upon which rest the joist ; nail up through the plate to hold them 


in place. Now board these studs on the inside, and batten the cracks with 
rough boards, and serve the under side of the joists in the same way. This 
makes a tiglit boarded room, eight feet wide, eight feet liigh, and twelve 
feet long. The floor must be laid upon timber bedded in gravel or charcoal, 
to cut off any currents of air, but so that all water from melted ice will 
drain off immediately. Divide oft' four feet of the end in which you intend 
to have the door, for a cooling-room, and you will have room for a cube of 
ice eight feet, less the straw or sawdust all around between the ice and 
boards, and this will last any family through the hot weather, with most liberal 
use of it for all needed purposes. 

Now for the protection of the ice to prevent its melting. Set up another 
"balloon frame" outside of the first, from one to two feet off, the widest 
space being the best, boarded perpendicularly with rough boards battened. 
The top of the outer frame must be tied firmly to the inner one by strips of 
boards nailed from plate to plate, and the space between the walls com- 
pactly filled with charcoal, sawdust, or straw, provision being made for a 
narrow doorway in one end, to be closed with shutters inside and out, which 
must be made to shut tight, and will be greatly improved by lining them 
with a coat of straw two inches thick, fastened on by lath nailed across. 
About the roof. This must be made in the same way as tlie sides, with two 
sets of rafters, boarded and filled between with straw, with good shingling 
outside, or some other tight roofing. It will be necessary to make a trap in 
the roof, or a door in the gable end, opposite the usual entrance, with a slide 
leading to the interior, for the convenience of filling, and there must be a 
suitable ventilating chimney, six inches square, from the ice up through 
the roof, which at times may be partially closed by a wisp of straw. Tlie 
space between the joists and the rafters, if filled with straw, will assist in 
the preservation of the ice, and need never be removed, except the portion 
around the door made for putting in ice. 

Tlie expense of snch an ice-house it will be easy to calculate upon the 
local cost of lumber. 

Such a building as we have described will take forty-eight studs 8 feet 
long, 2 by 4 inclies in size, which is quite strong enough, and sixteen inside 
rafters of same size, 8 feet long ; twenty rafters of same size, 9 feet long, for 
outside; two sills 2 by 6 inches, 8 feet long each; two ditto 13 feet long 
each for inside frame ; two ditto 16 feet and two ditto 12 feet for outside 
sills, and some short pieces of stuff for gable-end studs ; for plates two 
boards 6 inches wide, 13 feet long; two ditto 8 feet long; two ditto 12 feet 
and two ditto 16 feet each; and this constitutes the timber of the frame, and 
will not exceed 700 feet, board measure. In fact, tiiis wliole frame could be 
made of straight poles, or split stuff, which would cost but a trifle on some 
farms. The boarding of sides, roofs, floors, partition, measures in all, we be- 
lieve, 1,620 feet of surface and bat;tens, so that 2,500 feet of lumber and 2,000 
sliingles appear to be ample for an ice-house to stow a cube 8 feet square, 
witli a cooling-room 4: by 8 ; and two men can build it in four days. Now 

294 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

count the lumber at $12 a thousand, sliingles at $4 a thousand, work at $2 
a day, nails, liinges, etc., $2, team work $2, and we have a total of $50 for 
the cost of a building that is wor.h $50 to any farmer every year. AVho 
would do without an ice-house ? 

Having given the above as our own plan, we will add the plans of several 
others. Que writer says : 

" Instead of one hollow wall for a non-conductor of heat, as in ordinary 
ice-houses, I have two, with a space between them for confined air. The site 
is on a gravel slope. The foundation, for convenience in storing ice, is dug 
two feet below the surface of the ground. The outside wall, for non-con- 
ducting material, is six inches in the clear. The inside wall is four inches. 
The doors for entrance correspond perfectly with the hollow walls in 
thickness, and are filled in the same manner — -being shaped to shut with 
a bevel edge, like the door to safes used by merchants and bankers. 
At the lower side of the plates is a ceiling, upon which I put spent 
tan one foot thick, which tan is in direct connection with the side-walls, 
so that any settling in of the walls may be supplied from overhead. 
From the imder side of the ceiling runs a ventilator, with a hole of one and 
a half inch bore, up through the roof, which is finished with an ornamental 

"Tlie room for ice is eight by ten feet in the clear, and eight feet higli. 
About all tlie waste of ice that I observed during the summer was at the 
bottom, and this was so slow that we used the ice without regard to economy 
for a large family, and in a dairy of thirty-five cows, besides giving freely 
to our neighbors. 

"I put sticks four inches thick in the bottom to put ice on, and also some 
straw about the sides as well as underneath the ice." 

At a discussion about ice-houses, by the American Institute Farmers' Club, 
the following facts were elicited : 

Mr. Pardee read an extract from a paper upon ihe ventilation and drain- 
age of ice-houses. It states that an underground ice-house is calculated to 
melt ice much taster than above, because the earth gets heated and melts 
the ice. 

William S. Caepentek — It is a question of great moment to farmers how 
small a cube of ice can be kept well. I have not, in my exiicrience, found 
tliat one less than ten feet will keep. I have a floor over my ice, which I 
keep covered with straw, and find it an excellent thing to prevent thawing. 
I find the bottom layer of my house, which is an underground one, keeps 
better than the layers above. Same of my neighbors think the ice keeps 
the best if the cakes are set on edge. 

JouN G. Bekgen — The great ice-packers I have seen put in their cakes' 
flat, and very compact. Some of my neighbors break up the blocks of ice, 
but I prefer the solid blocks. My opinion is that straw is bettor tlian salt 
hay lo pack ice in. I should jirefor to have a very heavy coat of straw on 
the ice, and then I don't care about the ventilation above. I will say, how- 


ever, that my neighbors' ice-houses that have no upper floor, and are a good 
deal open at the top, do keep the ice well. 

Prof. JSTash — "We are too much inclined to be innovators in all our build- 
ings, and in ice-houses particularly. "We must look at the true philosophy 
of keeping ice, or we shall fail ; for the philosophy of it is to put it as mucli 
away from the air as possible, and that is why we pack it in straw or saw- 
dust, etc. As to giving some ventilation to the loft, or space over the ice, 
it may be of service. I think that an ice-house should not have any pro- 
vision for ventilation — the tighter the better. 

Solon RoBmsoN^There is a misunderstanding about this term ventila- 
tion. As one of the advocates of it for an ice-house, as well as all other 
houses, I do not mean open exposure, but simply to allow an escape of the 
heated air that will accumulate in the space between the straw and the roof. 
Make it as tight all round the body of the ice as possible, by using non- 
conducting substances from the exterior, and cover the top of the ice as 
closely as you please with sawdust or straw, but don't make the upper part 
too close ; at least, leave the cracks in the gable ends open. As for the 
sides, the best of all substances to fill with is fine charcoal ; the next best, 
sawdust ; next, tan-bark, straw, leaves from the forest, or salt hay, or any 
other fibrous substance. It is not necessary to have a double M^all if your 
ice is sufficiently packed around with any of the above substances. The air, 
at any ]-ate, must not come in contact with the ice, nor with a board that 
touches it. And a stone or the ground will melt ice much quicker than 
wood. What I have been most anxious for in bringing up this discussion 
upon ice-houses, is to divest the subject of all scientific nonsense about 
making buildings to keep ice of so expensive a character that no common 
farmer would undertake it. Yet there are thousands of men who might 
enjoy the comforts of a full supply of ice, and some of them would do it 
if they only knew that they could build a house at almost no cost. A log 
cabin, as described by Mi". Pell, or a cellar lined with fence-rails and a 
board roof, with plenty of sawdust, leaves, or straw, will keep it longer than 
a stone or brick building, put up at a cost of $500, I want to encourage 
people to build cheap ice-houses. 

A correspondent says: "I live on Staten Island, where neither charcoal, 
sawdust, nor tan-bark can be had, except at great expense, but dry forest- 
leaves and salt hay cost but a trifle. "Will either of the latter answer a good 
purpose for an ice-house out of the ground, and, if so, wliich is the best? (1.) 
I propose to make two boxes of rough hemlock boards — the outer one 
twelve feet square by ten feet high, the inner one ten feet square by the same 
bight — so as to leave a continuous space of twelve inches all round between 
the boxes, this space to be filled with leaves or hay pressed down tight. (2.) 
The roof to be covered with tongued and grooved boards, and set at an 
angle of 35 degrees, with a projection of two feet. The double doors 
will be in the peak of the roof, the outside frame to be supported by chest- 
nut posts, lined on one side, and set into the ground four feet apart ; the 

296 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

inside box, or frame, to bo supported by joists, 2x-t-inch, set edgewise, three 
feet apart, secured against the inner side. Chestnut sleepers will be laid on 
the ground, covered with loose boards, from which there will be good dniin- 
age. Will it be necessary to make the roof double, and have an opening on 
the top for ventilation? (3.) Can you suggest any improvement on tlii.-. 
plan, without increasing the cost? (4.) One of my neighbors, for the want 
of tan-bark or sawdust, built an expensive ice-house on the ground, walled 
up with stone, but it fails to keep the ice. (5.)" 
I will briefly answer these inquiries : 

1. Either salt hay or leaves Avill answer a good purpose, and I should use 
whichever is the cheapest. 

2. This plan will make an ice-house that will keep the contents safe in 
any place. 

3. There is the same necessity for a double roof that there is for double 
sides, and more, for that is not necessary if there is a good thick lining of 
straw between the ice and boards. I double my roof by a thatch of straw, 
first laid and then boarded over. 

4. The improvement I should suggest would be a cheaper frame. Make 
the outside just like the inside. It is cheaper, and will answer just as well 
as the chestnut-posts. 

5. This is probably owing to deficient ventilation ; that is, openings in the 
gable ends far above the ice, to allow the hot air and foul gases that accu- 
mulate there to pass ofl". If the stone walls of an ice-house once get heated 
from the sun, they retain the lieat both day and night, and communicate it 
to the atmosphere within. Stone is the worst material for an ice-house that 
can be used. 

RoBEKT L. Pell said that he built an ice-house just like a log-cabin, in 
the ground, with a board roof, that keeps ice first-rate. He built one of 
stone and one of brick, laid in cement, neither of which would keep ice. 
lie fills on a cold day, and leaves the house open to allow the ice to freeze. 
He packs broken ice into all the spaces between the cakes, and puts straw 
at the bottom eight inches thick, and packs the ice up to the wood on the 
sides, and leaves it until June or July, when there is a space melted away 
all round, and that is then packed tight with straw. His ice-house is most 
thoroughly ventilated in the upper portion of it. A full set of ice-tools costs 
about $50, but he did not think it necessary for a farmer to go to that ex- 
pense ; a saw is nearly as good as an ice-plow to cut ice on a small scale, 
Avhen great haste is not very necessary, as is the case with the great ice- 
gatherers for market. 

John G. Bergen — My ice-house is a cellar, about twelve feet square at the 
top and ten feet at the bottom, and this is fitted with a double-boarded frame, 
the hollow filled with sawdust. The earth is so porous that it gives a 
natural drainage. Tliere is a building, used for other purposes, over the ice- 
house, which is ventilated, but the ice part has no ventilation ; and I cover 
the ice with sawdust, and also around the sides, and it keeps well. I pack 


the cakes close, and tliey come out as square as tliey went in. There is a 
free circulation of air in the iipper part of my ice-house, and nothing but 
straw to exclude the air from the ice. The great Hudson River ice-hoiises 
are very large, and always built above ground, with double walls, filled with 
sawdust. The ice is packed close, and broken ice filled in to all the cracks. 
Some single ice-houses hold 3,000 tuns; and most of the ice used in the city 
is cut upon the river, and not upon lakes. 

Mr. QaiNN — I noticed that some of these ice-houses use salt hay. The 
roofs and sides are double, and the best of them are tilled with fine charcoal, 
making the wails eighteen inches thick. I know one person who had an 
underground ice-house, and now has one above, which he prefers ; the ice 
keeps in this the best. 

J. P. Vkeedek — I made my ice-house by digging a hole ten or twelve feet 
square, and lined it with boards as a double wall, filled in witli tanbark. 
My roof is a straw thatch. My ice keeps perfectly well. I have gqod 
drainage, and I put about six inches of straw around the ice on bottom, 
sides, and top. The house is only four feet below tlie surface, and the rest 
above. I pack about twelve or fourteen tuns of ice, being careful to fill all 
the crevices with broken ice. 

John G. Bergen said that he did not think a double roof necessary. 
None of the ice-houses in his neighborhood had them. 

Piof. Mapes — The point settled in building ice-houses is, that the whole 
ice-hoiise should be above ground. This is the practice in Massachusetts. 
There is no substance equal to a confined space of air for the walls of ice- 
houses. Build of whatever substance you please, so that you have a double 
wall, and tight enough to hold air, and you will have a perfect protector of 
ice. As to ventilation, Jenner, who first constructed ventilated ice-boxes, 
found that ice melted faster in ventilated than in unventilated boxes. Ventila- 
tion is necessary when you desire to keep food sweet. If there is no ventila- 
tion, the confined air soon becomes very foul from animal substances on ice. 
He then gave some interesting particulars of the large refrigeratoi-s in some 
of the city packing-houses. Some are so large that they use up a number 
of tuns of ice a day. The temperature is kept at 42 degrees, and in large 
rooms thus cooled hundreds of animals can be killed and cooled every day. 
If your object is to keep ice without use, shut up close — it needs no venti- 

315. How to Make and Store Ice. — H. Lyman, of Johnstown, Wis., tells 
how to make ice for putting up in ice-houses, where there-is no convenient 
pond or stream, and how to store it without an expensive house built on 
purpose. Mr. Lyman says : 

" I live on tlie prairie. On the coldest day of January I draw water from 
the well and pour it into square tin pans, two feet long, nine inches wide at 
the bottom, and nine and an eighth at the top, and about nine inches deep. 
While I have been drawing water, Dick has been gathering clean snow 
and putting it into the water. The compound is frozen immediately. I now 

298 THE FARMERY. [Cuap. ID. 

apply hot water w'tli cloths to the sides of the tin containers, which enables 
me to empty out the blocks of ice. 

" A cube of ice of four feet is all I need. No separate building need be 
erected to keep it in.. The barn, the wood-liouse, or the tool-house can 
furnish an ample corner. Tiie conditions of its safe keeping are — the walls 
of a building around, and two feet of compact straw on every side of the 
gelid mass. In packing, I lay loose boards on a bed of straw, a^id on this 
platform I lay the ice. I take care to expose the ice to the lowest tempera- 
ture of the year, and lay it up in the coldest state. If every alternate block 
of ice is inverted, the mass is thereby made compact; if not, lliere will be 
a little space open at the bottom between the respective blocks. AVhen the 
cube is comj)lete, cover the whole with straw. This work can be effected 
with milk pans or other vessels, and if straw or ice be carefully filled into 
the intervals in packing it will answer a good purpose, though square pans 
are preferable. I use snow for the sake of hastening the process of freezing. 
The pans are flared a little toward the top to f;\cilitate turning out." 

This excellent plan should be carefully heeded by all the dwellers upon 
prairies, and by a great many other people. 

.310. How to Carry Ice to Ihc Field.— Lucius Beach, of Port Huron, Mich., 
says : " Many farmers do not put up ice from the supposed difficulty of using 
it on the farm away from the house. I have used ice-water for constant 
drink two summers on my farm. I happened to carry water with ice in it 
into the field in a six-quart tin pail with a cover to it. "We used the watei", 
and the ice was left in the pail about six hours in a hot day, and some of it 
still remained. I then procured a twelve-quart tin pail with cover, put 
in a large piece of ice, took a jug of water^into the field, and turned it on 
to the ice as we wanted to use it. In this way it will last from six to ten 
hours for the use of six men, and is a luxury indeed." 

317. liOW to Keep Ice iu ^'lliunicr. — If you have no ice-liouse, and buy ice, 
or even if you have an ice-house, and do not want to open it except at even- 
ing or morning, or if it is inconvenieiit to the house, and you wish to have 
ice always hand}', this is how you can do it. Have a bushel of clean, dry 
sawdust, put a peck of it in the bottom of a tight barrel, having one hole 
for drainage, then put in a layer of lumps of ice and another peck of saw- 
dust, and so on, covering the top tightly with sawdust, and over all a folded 
blanket. Do not let the ice touch the staves, and do not set the barrel in a 
warm place, and you will have ice all day, with scarcely any perceptible 
waste. Provide sawdust enough, so that you can shift the wet for dry every. 
day. This is a much better ]ilan than wrapping ice in a blanket or keeping 
it in a refrigerator, because the best of these usefid articles of household fur- 
niture do not ])reservc ice, but rather waste it, and in so doing preserve the 
food placed in them. 

318. Refrigerators.^No family can afford to keep house without a re- 
frigerator — a food-preserver. "\Ve do not mean an ice-box, which, like the 
one above described, will keep ice, but nothing else — that is, not to any ad- 

Sec. IG.J 



vantage. A piece of meat, placed upon ice, -will keep a longer time than 
in the open warm air, but it does not keep as good as in dry air of ice 
temperature, and it spoils very quickly after it is taken olf the ice. A cus- 
tard pie kept three days on the ice will be slimy and aiot toothsome ; but 
when kept in a good refrigerator, the pie will be as sweet and dry as it is in 
a pantry in cool weather ; a piece of meat will keep in July as well as in 
January. Such a refrigerator has the ice at the top, and the air cooled by 
it falls upon the food below, or on a shelf alongside of the ice, aftd is as dry 
as any other cold air. A box of fine charcoal, kept in the i-efrigerator, and 
changed every month, will absorb all the unpleasant odors and keep the air 
sweet. Such refrigerators are common now in New York in families, and 
some of the butchers have them large enough to store the quarters of a bul- 
lock and several sheep and calves. And some of the packing-houses have 
them large enough to store and cut and pack, in a winter atmosphere, several 
hundred hogs a day. Without such " cooling-rooms," the summer slanghter- 
ing of butchers' animals could never be carried on to the great extent it is in 
all the large sea-board cities. This is one of the great inventions of the 
present age. These improved refrigerators, of suitable size for families, cost 
from $15 to $50 each. Ours, which cost $25, is worth $10 a year— has been 
in use live years, and is just as good as ever, and we see no reason why it 
will not be so ten years hence. It is better than none, even M'ithout ice, as 
it preserves an even condition of temperature. Every farmer should have 
ice, and no one should be without a refrigerator in some very convenient 
locality near the kitchen cr store-room. 


F all that might be profitably said under the title of this 
^y section were given, we should require a whole volume 

instead of a few pages, which is all the space we can allot 

to the important subject. 

A farm without a barn is only to be tolerated in a new 
settlement, as in some cases on the great prairies, where the 
land can be got under cultivation before the owner can erect 
the necessary buildings. Even there, we have always no- 
ticed that the most thrifty farmers were those who erected 
the best barns, at the earliest moment practicable. 

Tlie barn and its appurtenances, treated of in this section, 
contains information that will be found valuable to every one 
who owns, or ever expects to own, a farm. 

319. The Use and Value of Barns, and their Locationt— Of 
course, a good barn is one of the great essentials of a farmery — one that can 

300 THE FARMERY. [Chap. HI. 

not be dispensed with. Grain and hay may bo preserved in stacks or bar- 
racks, but tiie one can not be threshed and cleaned out-door -without waste, 
and (he other can not be fed to the stock to good advantage anywhere but 
in the barn. A good house and convenient out-buildings are comfortable; a 
good barn is one of the grand necessities of good farming. 

No farmer can afford to do without one of sufScicnt size to acconmiodatc 
all the purposes for which a barn is appropriate. We have rarely, if ever, 
seen upon a well-cultivated farm a barn that was too large. In nine out of 
ten cases the barn is too small. After it is too late, the farmer regrets that 
he had not built it larger. But lack of size is not so great a fault as wrong 
location, for you can build to the original, by a lean-to upon one side, and 
open shed or stable on the other, or an entire new building adjoining, so as 
to make the whole quite as convenient as though all built together in one 
building. But if the location is wrong, it never can be righted. So, in 
building anew, make this a question for careful consideration : " Where shall 
I place my barn ?" And do not place it until you know that you are rigiit. 

We will point out a few essential things about location, which we think 
may be of service to those about to build barns.' 

First, a barn never should be set up-hill from the house, where by any 
possibility the drainage either on the surface, or under it, should come down 
about the door, or into the cellar or well. AVherever the situation will 
admit of it, place the barn on a lower level than the house, and northerly 
or westerly from it, and do not be afraid to give a good distance between. 
You had better walk an extra hundred feet all your life than have a hundred 
foul smells creeping into every room in your dwelling. 

Secondly, never build your barn upon the roadside. Upon the road, 
only a mile long, which we daily travel between our own home and the 
railroad station, there are four barns, located upon just such situations as are 
very common in all hilly regions, the face of a hill, which gives mo.-t excel- 
lent natural drainage— but unfortunately for good economy, the drainage is 
directly into the jniblic I'oad. 

Another thing in the location of a barn should he had in view, and that 
is convenience of access. For a large farm, a hillside barn, that can liave a 
drive-way into the second or third stor}-, affords a great convenience about 
unloading hay, and hauling away manure from the lower side. 

A location should be chosen for a barn, so far as it can be, with reference 
to other important considerations, where it will not occupy half an acre, or 
more, perhaps, of the very best soil, about the center adopted fc)r the farmery 
establishment. If you are about to make a new location for the whole of * 
the buildings to constitute a farmery, it will be easy to have them arranged 
relatively right, if you first make a complete map of the whole farm, and 
then make j'our locations to suit peculiar circumstances. On a rough, rocky 
farm yon may often save an acre of good land by placing your buildings 
upon ground or rock fit only to build upon, and much better for that than a 
rich soil. 

Seo. 16.] 



Above all things, in selecting a site for the ftirmeiy, of which the barn, 
with its appurtenances, forms such a conspicuous portion, avoid locating 
directly upon both sides of the road, and all locations upon brook or river 
banks, wliich allow so much fertility to be washed away. Aud do not go 
to the bottom of the hill because there is a natural spring there, or because 
you can dig a well so easily. You can have a cistern anywhere near a roof, 
if you can not get a well. Do not locate on the very pinnacle of the hill — 
it is too bleak, even in quite warm latitudes. If you place the house on the 
hill, you need not put the barn, like one I see almost daily, on the top of 
the highest pile of rocks in the vicinity — a spot bleak euoiigh to Ulow the 
hair off a cow's back. 

Having said this much of the most important question, we will now 
introduce some descriptions of a few of the best barns in this country. 

320. Barn built by the Shakers, Canterbury, N. H.— The location of this 
Shaker society is about fifteen miles north of Concord, N. H., and nine miles 
east of Merrimac Eiver. The society is composed of three families, and 
owns about 2,500 acres, lying in nearly a square form, in the center of 
which are their substantially built and commodious dwelling-houses and 
numerous other buildings, all of which are painted of lightish colors, and 
kept in the most complete repair and neatness. 

The main body of the barn is 200 feet in length by 45 in width, with 34 
feet jjosts (three stories high). The roof is nearly flat, double boarded, then 
covered with three layers of stout sheathing paper, saturated with coal tar, 
upon which is spread a thick coat of coal tar and screened gravel. There 
is a projection at each end of the barn, 25 feet in length and about 16 in 
width, so that the whole length is 250 feet. The whole structure is well 
boarded. The sides and ends are covered with 16-inch pine shingles, laid 
four inches to the weather. There are three floors, extending the whole 
length of the main body of the barn. The ground upon which the barn 
was erected was nearly level, but at great expense a drive-way has been 
graded, of easy ascent, so tliat the loads of hay are driven on to the upper 
floor, over the high beams, so that, in unloading, the hay is pitched down, 
instead of up. This makes a material ditierence in forking over 200 tons 
of hay each hay season. The floors, ceilings, partitions, etc., are all planed 
and finished off as handsomely as farm-houses formerly were. There are 
two hovels on the lower floor, extending the whole length of the main barn, 
the eastern portions of which are arranged for tying up 23 cows in each, 
with sliding stanchions. The cows have been so trained, as they pass in 
the hovel each one takes its own place with the regularity of well-trained 
soldiers, and by a simple contrivance — the turn of a short lever — the heads 
of all the cows are fastened or loosened, quicker than any one could be tied 
by a rope. Each cow is named, and, like the "world's people," they select 
fancy names for their cows, such as Rosa, Lady Grace, Julia, Bustle, and 
Crinoline, each of which is printed in large type on slips of pasteboard, and 
tacked upon the joists over each one. Upon the roof are three large, hand- 

302 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

soiuely finished ventilators, with Ycnetian blinds. The cellar, 200 by 45 
leer, is of good depth ; the walls are of split granite, pointed with cement. 
Large wooden tubes pass from the cellar through the roof, which effectually 
carry ofl' the heated foul air of the manure. From the south side of the cen- 
ter of the barn described, a two-story building extends, south, 100 feet by 
27. The upper part is used for storing hay, grain, straw, etc. ; the lower, 
for calf-peus, store-rooms, and hospital for sick animals, with a nicely fitted 
up room for the herdsman. The roof of this, like that of the large barn, is 
nearly flat, tarred and graveled, and shingled upon the sides and ends, as is, 
also, a new sheep-barn, built adjoining. This runs from the southeast cor- 
ner of the large barn, 108 feet long by 43 wide. The drive-way floor of 
this is 17 feet wide, so that two teams can stand abreast, and at the south 
end the floor is wide enough to allow the turning about of the team, so that 
the oxen passing out go before the cart, instead of the cart going out first — 
for the south end is not graded up bo as to admit of driving through, as in 
(he large barn. 

Another addition Avas planned, that is, a long shod, extending from the 
southwest corner of the barn 100 feet. This will give two barn-yards of 
about 100 feet square each, well sheltered, all but the south, with both yards 
well supplied with water. 

As the Shakers are famous for good barns, we shall give the description 
of another one of theirs. We have great confidence in the economy of the 
form of the one next described, as well as its great convenience. 

321. A Circular Barn. — The Shakers of Berkshire County, Mass., have a 
barn that is worthy the attention of farmers who are contemplating the 
erection of barns upon a large scale. We should think that on some 
accounts it would be a good form to erect upon large prairie farms. We 
recommend its form for adobe buildings and concrete walls, as one best 
adapted to withstand the force of hard storms, as well as the form most 
economical for the room inclosed. The barn owned by the Shakers is 100 
feet in diameter, built of stone — a material that is very abundant in that 
part of Massachusetts. It is two stories higli, the first one being only seven 
and a half feet between floors, and containing stalls for seventy head of 
cattle, and two calf stables. These stalls are situated in a circle next the 
outer wall, with the heads of the animals pointing inward, looking into an 
alley in which the feeder passes around in front of and looking into the face 
of every animal. The circle forming the stable and alley-Avay is fourteen 
feet wide, inside of which is the great bay. Over the stable and alley is 
the threshing-floor, which is fourteen feet wide and about three hundred 
feet long on the outer side, into which a dozen loads of ha}' may be hauled, 
and all be unloaded at the same time into the bay in the center. There 
should be a large chimney formed of timbers open in the center of such a 
mass of liay, connecting with air tubes under the stable floor, extending out 
to the outside of the building, and with a large ventilator in the peak of the 
roof. AVe should also recommend an extension of the eaves beyond the 


outer wall, by means of brackets, so as to form a shed over the doors, and 
the manure thrown out of the stable and piled against the wall. 

In the barn mentioned there is a granary projecting into the circle of t'le 
bay, which we do not exactly approve, preferring the granary in a sejsarate 
building, to which grain may be conveyed through spouts, if the barn is 
located iipon the hillside, which is preferable on account of entering the 
threshing-floor on a level, though that is not indispensable, as a wagou-way 
can be graded up from a level plat. 

323. Barn Foundations. — The stone foundation of a barn should never be 
laid in mortar. This is an error that should be avoided, as imnecessary and 
unprofitable. It would be even better to place the sills upon pillars, leaving 
a free circulation, and space high enough to furnish shelter for all tlie 
poultry in winter, and thus keep them out of the inside of the barn, whore 
they are a nuisance. The main object, however, is to give free circiilation 
of the air, to drive out all foul gases, and promote the health of animals. 
The surface must be so graded that no M'ater will stand under the barn. 

323. Opinions of Practical Farmers about Barns. — At a Farmers' Club in 
West Springfield, Mass., after consultation and debate, it was decided that a 
large barn was better than two or more small ones ; that a tight barn was 
better, even for badly-cnrcd hay, than an open one ; that a brick barn and a 
blate roof wei-e the best and cheapest for a man who has all his materials to 
buy ; that a good connection between a house and barn is a covered walk, 
overhung with grapevines ; that economy of roof and convenience for work 
were of the first importance in any building ; that warm water and warm 
stables were essential to the comfort of animals ; that the housing of manures 
was judicious ; that liquid manures arc largely lost, even by those who 
have cellars and sheds for s'oriug tliem ; and that the best absorbents of 
liquid manure are buckwheat hulls, leaf mold, sawdust, fine sand, dried 
peat, turf, and straw. 

Tlie meeting -was held at the house of one of the members— an old-fash- 
ioned two-story building — with modern furniture and fixtures, where the 
well-spread tables were bountifully loaded with fat chickens, mealy potatoes, 
light bread, yellow butter, melting cheese, with pies and cake to match, 
all lavishly bestowed, and such conversation ensued as would, if it could 
be imitated ia every neighborhood, prove of great benefit to the people. 
Let the plan be imitated. If not the plan of the barn, certainly the plan of 
meeting with your neighbors, and talking over the subject, as to whether 
you shall build a large or small barn, and of what materials. It is also 
very important to every one about to build, to go about, far and near, and 
look at all the barns of various sizes, forms, and fashions, and talk about 
their conveniences and the reverse. 

324. Barns Boarded Tight or Open.— "Whether barns should be tight is one 
of the most important questions that a farmer can consider ; for it may 
involve the health and lives of all his farm stock. It is contended by some 
writers, with a good deal of reason, that open barns are more healthy for 

304 THE FARMERY. [Cjiap. III. 

stock, particularly the bovine portion, than closely boarded ones. A com- 
munication from a farmer in Maine says : 

'■ Several years ago, I learned by experience that tight barns were not 
healthy for cattle, and a little reasoning upon the subject will explain why 
tliis is £0. It is a well-known fact, that the droppings of cattle, both solid 
and liquid, exhale a vast amount of gases of diflercnt kinds, and these ga■^c3 
are unfit for respiration ; if cattle are deprived of air, and breathe these 
gases, they die instantly, and if they breathe air impregnated with a large 
projjortion of these gases, they sicken immediately ; the disease most likely 
to be produced is pneumonia, or inflammation of the lungs, as the poison is 
applied directly to them. 

" Now what provision is made in modern tight barns to get rid of these 
gases ? Wliy, there is a ventilator on the top of the barn, but how are 
these gases to get to the top_ of the barn, since a large proportion of them 
are heavier than atmospheric air? The carbonic and sulphurous gases, 
which are more abundant than all others, are heavier than air, and con- 
sequently will not ascend ; ammonia is light and would fly away, but the 
carbonic and sulphurous gases, having a strong afiinity for ammonia, seize 
the fugitive, and by a chemical action a new compound is formed heavier 
than air, which, of course, must remain, unless there is some underground 
passage by which it can escape. If there is no place for its escape, these 
gases accumulate until the barn becomes filled with them, the hay is im- 
]>regnated, and the stock has to eat as well as breathe this noxious matter, 
and the trouble is Morse if the stock is high fed. Fii-st, because high-fed 
animals have a greater amount of blood, the blood-vessels are fuller, and 
consequently a greater tendency to congestion. Secondly, because the 
excrements of higli-fed animals evolve a much greater amount of gases than 
those of others, and the difficulty of ventilation is increased by the fact that 
these gases arc so nearly of the weight of air. If they were all light, like 
carbureted hydiogen, they would soon escape at the top ; or if they were 
heavy like water, or even pure carbonic acid gas, they would, in most barns, 
find cracks sufficiently large to run out near the bottom ; but as the fads 
prove that the gases are nearly of the same weight of air, I am led to the 
following conclusions : 

" First, that the walls of barns should never be clapboarded ; then there 
will be a gentle current constantly passing through the barn, and the gases 
passing out of the cracks on the leeward side; second, that the stable for 
liorscs and cattle should extend from one end of the barn to the other, with 
a door at each end, both of which should generally be open excepting in 
severe cold weather, and in storms. I have found by experience that a 
horse kept in a small, tight stable, will commence coughing in a very few 
days. Cattle do not suflTer with tiie cold (unless the cold is extreme) if tliey 
are in good health, arc well fed, and have a dry, clean stall, and plenty of 
good air to breathe. The lungs of an ox will manufacture a vast amount 
of animal heat. I have known a cow to be wintered with no other shelter 


than an open shed, more than two hundred miles farther north than Massa- 
chusetts, and she gave milk all winter, and came out well in the spring." 

There is something worth a thought in this matter about airy barns. We 
know them to be the best tor liay and grain; and we know that in olden 
time in New England, all of the barns, covered with upright boards, put on 
green, had wide cracks from top to bottom, and in such stables, although 
very cold, the cattle wintered well and kept healthy. It is shelter from 
storms, and not shelter from cold, that all of our stock needs. 

325. Ventilating Hay-mows. — One of the worst practices of farmers, in New 
England particularly, is storing hay in large bays, without a sign of any 
ventilation under the bulk, which usually rests upon a few loose poles or 
boards on the damp ground. A bay should have ventilation, not only under 
it, but up through it, by means of a chimney made of four poles fastened 
together by rounds like a ladder. A loose stone foundation could be laid 
for the hay bottom, with an air-chamber from the outside leading to the 
chimney, directly over which there should be a ventilator in the roof. This 
simple contrivance would not only save many a tun of hay from mustiness, 
but it would enable the owner to put in his hay in a much greener state, 
and that which is next the chimney would always come out very sweet. 

326. Stables — how to fonstrnct them. — A stable should be built with a view 
to several points, among which we may mention economy of space consistent 
with comfort, convenience of feeding and milking the animals, convenience 
of tethering them so that they may have the largest measure of liberty of 
motion, but be unable to injure one another; convenience of getting hay 
from the loft and grain from the bin to the stalls ; and convenience of re- 
moving the liquid and solid excretions, so as to preserve their quality, and 
remove them so speedily tliat the effluvium may not be breathed by the cows. 

The floor of a cow-stall of a well-constructed stable is four feet to four feet 
six inches long, raised two or three inches for a dry platform. Behind the 
platform the floor is made of white-oak slats set apart so that the urine may 
drop through to the cellar beneath. The floor-beams are laid four feet 
apart. On the sides stout elects are nailed, and on these the 2x3^ white- 
oak slats are dovetailed and firmly nailed. Tiie slats are beveled to a sharp 
edge beneath, so that the manure will not clog the open spaces, but drop 
clear as soon as it sinks below the upper edges of the slats. The slatted 
space is a foot and a half in width. Behind that the first plank of the floor 
is made to lift like a trap-door, turning on hinges, to secure an open space 
through which to hoe the droppings, litter, etc., that would not readily pass 
between the slats. By this simple contrivance the droppings of thirty cows 
can be removed in a few minutes. 

327. Stables should always be built high — that is, high between floors. Most 
stables are built low, " because they are warmer." But the builders forget 
that warmth is obtained at a sacrifice of pure air and the health of the an- 
imal. Shut a man up in a tight, small box ; the air may be warmer, but it 
will soon lay him out dead and cold if he continues to breathe it. If stables 

306 THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

are tight, they sliould have high ceilings; if the}' are not tight, but open to 
the admission of cold currents of air from all directions, they will be too 
much ventilated, or, rather, ventilated in the wrong place. One of the 
cheapest modes of ventilation is to build the stable liigh, so as to give room 
for the light air to rise above the heads of animals. The grand rule that 
must be observed is not to coniine a beast in a room so small that its 
breathing will soon poison all the air unless the foul portion can escape and 
fresh air enter. 

328. Cattle Sheds that Cost Nothingi — It is an act of wanton cruelty to 
expose stock to the blasts of winter without shelter. In a country of saw- 
mills, how cheaply a shed can be built of slabs nailed to rough posts, set in 
the gi'ound, and roofed by laying one course of slabs round side down, and 
the upper course round side up ! The cracks of the sides can be battened 
with thin strips of slabs or refuse boards. 

In a wooded country, where sawed stuff can not be had, how cheaply a 
side of round logs can be built and cracks daubed with mud. Then an 
excellent roof can be made of split stuff, called shakes in some places and 
clap-boards in others, being split 2i to 5 feet long, and 4 to 6 inches wide, 
according to the quality of the timber for riving. These laid upon round 
ribs, and held in place by weight-poles, make a roof, though rough in appear- 
ance, as tight as a shingled one. If bark is peeled at the proper time and 
laid at once, or piled and dried flat, it makes a jjretty good roof, still cheaper 
than one of shakes, though not so durable. We have seen a very good 
cattle-shed roof made of hemlock boughs, laid on in courses, butts up. 

Cheap sheds on the prairie, where cattle are exposed to winter blasts more 
than in any other locality, can be made so easily that it seems worse than 
cruel — it is wicked — to leave the poor brutes exposed. 

Where rails are to be had, lay up a double wall of rails a foot apart, by 
using cross-pieces at the end, and fill up the space with sods, or with earth 
and leaves, or brush, or with coarse manure, or moldy hay and straw, such 
as cattle will not cat out, and you have a good wind-breaker. Extend from 
this wall, to the south, rails or poles to rest upon a girder on posts, and stack 
hay or straw on top, and there is a shed. It costs but little more to stack 
hay in this way than it does to make a suitable stack-bottom, and then fence 
the stack. As the hay is fed oft' in winter, fill up the space with refuse Lay 
and straw, so as to break the wind, if it does not stop all the rain. Such 
sheds for sheep are very valualile. 

Where rails are scarce, a good wall can be made of prairie sods laid up in 
courses, with hazel brush or small limbs to bind the sods •together, to give 
strength and prevent cattle from hooking the wall down. On this wall lay 
a plate to support the floor of the stack or roof. Such cattle shelter pays it8 
cost every winter. Tlierc is straw enough burned or wasted every fall, upon 
the Western prairies, to shelter all the stock every winter, if it were put up 
in some such cheap form as wc have indicated. 

329. A Valuable, Cheap Feed-Trough.— One of the puzzles in building horse 


Stables has been how to make tlie feed-trouglis. "We can ?olve that difficulty. 
"We have learned how to make a horse feed-troug!i. Or, rather, -vve have 
learned how to purchase a very good and very cheap one. We learned it 
of a progressive young farmer. Tlio farm of Josiali Macy, a Westchester 
County farmer of the old school, is conducted by his grandson, who has 
gained knowledge from books, and goes ahead with improvements, one of 
which is a new feed-trough. It is simply an iron pot — just such a one as our 
dinner used to be boiled in before the age of cooking-stoves. One of about 
four gallons is a good size, and it is set in the corner of the manger, in a 
casing of boards that inclose the rim, just up even with the top. It is sujje- 
rior to any wooden, iron, or stone feed-box we ever saw ; is not expensive, 
and, barring accidents, it will last forever, and be a good pot afterward. 

330. Earthen Stable Floors.— One of the best substances that can be found 
for flooring for horses is clean sand. It is superior to wood, as it does not 
heat and injure hoofs. Some English veterinary surgeons use nothing else 
for bedding but sand. We have always found stables with dirt floors prefer- 
able to plank ones. 

331. The Stable Yard.— The stable, or barn-yard, is one of the most im- 
portant appurtenances of the farmery. Two grand objects must be kept in 
view in its construction — the comfort of the animals aud the preservation of 
the manure. If it is on soft soil, and tolerably level, as such yards are upon 
nine out of every ten of the Western prairie farms, they are most uncom- 
fortable places for stock, although good for preservation of manure, but that 
is little or no object where it is of so little value. The only help that we can 
see for a barn-yard upon such soil, wliere the tramping of cattle makes it 
into a quagmire, is thorough underdrainage, and scraping the earth from 
around into a low mound, and covering tlie most of that with sheds. It may 
be BO constructed that all the drainage of the manure will concentrate in one 
spo", to be absorbed by straw or other manure-making substance. We have 
found paving a yard witli common fence-rails, where stones could not be 
procured, paid the cost every year, and such a pavement will last half a 
dozen years. 

In a rocky country, like eastern New York, Pennsylvania, and the New 
England States, if care and sound judgment are used in the location of a 
farmery, the yard can be fixed on the southerly side of the barn and sheds, 
where it will always be dry, and very comfortable for stock, and yet not 
wasteful of manure. Our own is located upon a rock, sloping southeast. 
Just outside the fence, at the lowest corner, an excavation is made, to be 
kept full of muck, sods, or other absorbents, so that while the yard is con- 
stantly drained, the drainage is not lost. Some very good yards we have 
seen constructed with a deep basin in the center. The great objection to 
this form in a small yard is tliat the basin sometimes gets so full that there 
is not dry space enough around the edges for the cattle. Sometimes, too, it 
freezes over quite full, and strong cattle push the weaker ones upon the ice 
to their injury. We prefer the absorbing basin outside of the yard. 



[Chap. III. 

332. The Uen-Roost. — Every farmery must have a lien-roost, if it does 
not have a poultry-yard ; and tliis should not be an open shed, nor a cold 
open room, but one so arranged that it will be well sheltered from cold winds 
aud storms, and lighted by a glass window upon the sunny side or in the 
roof. It will also be found a most excellent provision to give hens access in 
M-inter to a cellar, whore they can scratch gravel and wallow in dust. The 
hen-roost, too, should be arranged with special reference to saving all the 
droppings of the fowls, because it is the most valuable manure that is made 
about a farmery. 


iBOUT half of the farms in the United States are 
deficient in water — that is, the water is not con- 
venient for stock; and in many situations cattle 
can only be watered by pumping, or by the still 
more tedious process of drawing water in a bucket 
from a well. This is a serious piece of labor, and a 
useless one, because the wind can be made to do the 
work a great deal better, cheaper, and more certain ; 
and the whole expense of a wind-mill, pump, and 
putting into operation, in a well twenty feet deep, 
would not probably exceed $50. 

You may use any one of a dozen iron pumps, to be 
found in almost every hardware store. Our own 
y7^^^~^ ^ ^ choice would be "West's Anti-Freezing Pump, which 
X.,_^ is made of iron, and is very durable. The wind-mill 

for the motive power is simplicity simplified. The wind-wheel is four feet 
in diameter, divided into eight parts, curved from the center, just as we used 
to whittle out wind-mills from a pine shingle forty years ago. The wheel 
may be made of wood or iron. If of wood, fix the points of the sails in a 
wooden hub and secure the outer ends by a rim, just like that of a large 
spinning-wheel. Fix this wheel firmly upon an inch iron-bar, say two feet 
long, with two bearings to run in iron or hard wood, and a crank in the 
center suited to the stroke of your pump. If the valve works four inches, 
make your crank short two inches. Now make a frame of three pieces, 
three quarters of a square, with bearings for the wind-wheel shaft upon 
two, and an inch and a quarter hole in the center of the other piece. 
Upon this frame attach a vane of strong, thin wood, about three feet long 
and one foot wide at the outer end. Now erect a gallows-frame seven feet 
wide and fifteen feet high over the pump, fixed with a pipe in the well. No 
matter whether that pipe is straight or not. Now put a bolt, with a big 
head and washer, through the hole in the frame that holds the shaft, aud 


through the center of the cross-piece of the gallows, so that the small frame 
will be held firmly by the head of that bolt, yet will turn freely in the wind. 
From the piston-rod of the pumj), extend a rod with a swivel-joint in the 
center to the crank, and, let the wind blow high or low, you will have the 
satisfaction of knowing that your cattle are supplied with water. It is a 
good plan to make a cistern to hold a supply in case the pump stops at any 
time for repairs or want of wind ; the latter will not be apt to occur, as it 
will run with a very slight breeze. From your watering-tub or trough, con- 
duct a pipe back to the well, and you need not fear frost unless the pump 
stops. By making use of a force-pump you may get a supply from a well 
in the valley up to your house and barn on the hill, or to irrigate your 
garden. See Nos. 369, 370, 

How to get water most convenient to all parts of the farmery should be 
the leading consideration ; because water is indispensable — neither man nor 
beast can do without it a single day. All else may be inconvenient — water 
sliould never be. It should be brought in pipes from a higher level, when- 
ever it is practicable at any reasonable expense, because that is the most 
convenient of all forms in which water can be had at the farmery ; and no 
farmer can aflord to neglect to supply his place with water, if he owns a 
spring or stream that would afford such a supply, because it is the greatest 
labor-saving fixture that he can make. 

If aqueduct M-ater can not be had, then convenient wells and pumps 
should be; and if water can not be had by easy, shallow digging, in wells, 
it can and should be in cisterns : and upon this question we will give some 
useful information. 

333. Econoniy of Aqueducts. — Some farmers neglect to make provision for 
watering domestic animals until drought actually arrives, and then they can 
not. We well knew one who, during a drought, drove his cattle a mile to 
water, at the same time that he had roof enough on his large barn to give 
them all the drink they needed, if a cistern of proper capacity had been pre- 
pared to retain it. The barn cost $1,000 — the cistern might be built for 
$50 — yet every animal of his large lierd must travel miles every week for 
necessary drink. lie might construct a cistern now, but it will be another 
year before he can derive benefit from it, and so he puts otf the labor. 

There are many others who do the same. We know another farmer, who 
has lived till past eighty years of age upon a farm where there is a gushing 
spring of excellent water within sixty rods of his house and barn, high 
enough to run through pipes over the top of every building, yet this man 
draws water with a bucket from a well, which sometimes fails, when he has 
to go to a more distant and inconvenient well, or haul water in barrels from 
the river; and his stock, all the long winter, go down the road to the river- 
side for drink, wasting time (and that is money) and manure, to replace 
which he buj's fertilizers. Saving the first cost of an aqueduct, in such 
cases, is not saving money. Neither is the neglect to construct cisterns a 
good piece of economy. 

310 THE FARMERY. [Chap. HI. 

334. Value of Cisterns— their Size and Contents.— Xo man, -nhose only sup- 
ply of water is in a deep well, or where the well or spring water, however 
convenient, is hard — that is, like all the water of limestone countries, iinfit 
for washing, or making butter — can atlbrd to do without a cistern. If the 
earth where the cistern is to be built is compact clay, it can be dug out in 
the form of a jug, with only a man-hole at the top; and in all ground but 
cavin» sand it can be dug and plastered without any brick walls, and the 
top covered with durable timber, which should be placed at least four feet 
from the surface to its under side, as it will, when thus covered, last enough 
longer to pay for the extra work. Wherever flat stones abound, a moderate- 
sized cistern should be covered with them, laid shelving over each way, if 
not large enough to reach clear across. The earth-bottom and walls are 
easily made tight by cement (water-lime mortar), made -with three parts of 
clean, coarse, sharp sand to one of lime, which has to be wet up only as it 
is wanted for use, or it will set wherever it has a chance to dry upon the 
bed where mixed. It should be very thoroughly worked in, mixing wliile 
pretty wet, and plastered on the bottom first and then up the sides, one coat 
after another as fast as one is dry — two or three coats — taking care that no 
defect is made in the joining of tlie sides and bottom together. The bottom 
should be dug liollowing, and corners full ; and to save cement, any little in- 
equalities in the walls may be filled witli clay or lime-mortar before putting on 
the cement plaster. In situations where cement can not be obt^ned, a good 
cistern can be made as follows, which will last a dozen years certain. "We 
know one good at twenty years old. Take one and a half-inch plank, six or 
eight feet long, six inches wide at one end and six and a quarter at the other ; 
joint and dowel the edges, and fit the ends with a croze upon heads six or 
eight feet across, and hoop just enough to keep together to roll into the hole, 
biggest end down, upon a soft mortar bed of clay, four inches deep ; then 
till the space, between the tub and walls, which should be four or six inches 
wide, with clay just moist enough to tamp in the most compact manner, 
and the cistern will never leak, and will give great satisfaction for its small 
cost. The top should be covered over with timber and earth, deep enough to 
keep wami in winter and cool in summer. 

Upon the roof of a barn 35 by 70 feet — if three feet of rain fall annually 
— three cubic feet of water will be aftbrded by every square foot of surface — 
more than 7,000 cubic feet from the whole roof — which woidd be about 
1,700 barrels. This would be enougli to water daily, the year through, thir- 
teen head of cattle, each animal drinking four twelve-quart pails full per day. 
But if the water were reserved for the dry season only, or when small streams 
are dry, thirty or forty head might be watered from one roof. 

People are apt to make their cisterns too small, so that often they do not 
hold a tenth part of the water from the eaves. In the above-mentioned 
instance it would not be necessary to construct one large enough to hold tlie 
entire 1,700 barrels. If the cattle were watered from it the year round, and 
its contents thus constantly drawn as if fills, one large enough to hold -tOO 

Sec. 17.] "WATER FOR THE FARMERY. 311 

barrels would do ; but if needed for the dry season only, it should be more 
than double. A cistern fourteen feet in diameter and twelve feet deep would 
hold about 450 barrels — twenty feet in diameter, and the same depth, would 
be sufficient for 900 barrels. If built imder ground, and contracted toward 
the top, it would require to be a little larger in dimensions, to allow for the 
contracted space. Such a contraction would be absolutely necessary to 
admit of convenient and safe covering at the top, and could be effected 
without any difficulty if built of masonry. The pressure of the water out- 
ward would be counterbalanced by the pressure of the earth against the 
exterior, especially if well rammed in as the wall is built. 

There are some portions of the coimtry where the subsoil is underlaid by 
slate or other rock which may be excavated. In Buch cases, it sometimes 
happens that Avith a little care in cutting, the water-lime mortar may be ap- 
plied immediately to the rocky walls, a shoulder above being made on which 
to build the contracted part of the wall. 

We have such a cistern, dug in tolerably compact earth, and plastered 
with cement, put on in two or three coats, using about two and a half barrels 
for a cistern eight feet wide and six feet deep. It was designed to be 
deeper, which would have made a better proportion, but the excavators 
came upon a ledge that could not be blasted, and was very difficult to jjick 
up, and the bottom being very rough, required more plaster. The top is 
covered with chestnut plank, over which is earth, and the water is let in 
through a pij^e beneath the surface, and taken out by another that leads to 
the pump in the kitchen. Tliere is also an outlet pipe under the covering 
for surplus water, so that when full, tliere is a body of water five feet deep 
by eight wide, and this gives about sixty barrels; and being supplied by 
1,600 superficial feet of roof, is not likely to fail for family use. The water 
is perfectly filtered by the most convenient filtering arrangement for a cis- 
tern that we ever saw. 

This is b}^ Peirce's patent porous cement pipes, which are laid in a sort 
of net-work in the bottom of the cistern, and the pump-pipe attached to 
them, so that no water can reach the pump that has not passed through the 
substance of the pipes, which are in appearance much like solid stone, and 
more than an inch thick, which certainly forms a very perfect strainer to free 
the rain water of all impurities. A writer in his recommendation to every- 
body to build cisterns, says : 

' I have one in my house cellar, entirely below the bottom of the cellar, 
six and half feet deep and five and a half in diameter, holding about 1,000 
gallons. It was dug six feet eight inches deep and seven feet in diameter. 
The bottom being made smooth, was laid over with brick. The mason then 
began the side with brick laid in cement, leaving a space all round between 
the brick and earth about five inches. After raising the work about eighteen 
inches, he carefully filled the space between the brick and side of the hole 
with earth, well and carefully pressed down. If you wet the earth or clay 
as you fill it in, it will be more compact. 

312 THE FARMERY. [Chap. HI. 

" "When yoii get vrithiu about two feet of the top, commence gradually to 
draw in the work toward the center, leaving, when finished, a space open 
about two feet across. The next thing is to plaster the inside with cement ; 
also the top on the outside, commencing where you began to draw in. About 
two courses of brick are laid round the mouth of the cistern, forming a neck, 
which adds to tlie strength of the top. Now cover the whole with earth, 
e.xcept the neck. The water is conducted to my cistern through a small 
brick drain laid in cement. I also have a drain near the top to let off the 
surplus water. If a cistern is made out of doors, it must be below the reach 
of frost. Lead pipe would probably be cheaper than brick to conduct water 
to and from the cistern. 

" I have no doubt but that a cistern made this way of hard brick would 
last a century. Mine, holding 1,000 gallons, cost $18. The larger the size, 
the less the cost in proportion to the capacity. If the earth is firm and hard, 
you may lay the brick close against it, thus saving the trouble of filling in 
and digging so large. I have known them made by cementing directly on 
the earth, using no brick, and covering the top with timbers or plank. One 
made with brick will cost more, but I think it best and cheapest, taking into 
consideration safety and durability." 

Tables of Coxtents of Circulae Cisterns. — ^The following tables of the 
size and contents of circular cisterns may be convenient to those about to 
build them. For each foot of depth, the number of barrels answering to 
the diflerent diametei-s is as follows : 

For 5 feet in diameter 4.66 barrels. 

6 " " 6.71 

7 " " 9.13 

8 " " 11.93 " 

9 " " 15.10 " 

10 " " 18.65 " 

A cistern SJ feet diameter will hold for every 10 inches in depth 59 gallons. 

4 " •' 78 " 

4i " " 99 ". 

5 " " 122 " 

6} " " 148 " 

6 " " 176 

8 " '« 310 " 

You will find by this table that a cistern six feet deep and six in diameter 
will hold 1,260 gallons, and each foot you add in depth will hold 210 
gallons. Therefore, one ten feet deep and six in diameter Avill contain 
2,100 gallons. 

To find the contents of any cistern in wine gallons, the diameter and 
depth being known : 

1. Multiply one half the diameter (in feet) by itself. 

2. Multiply the above product by 3|, which will give the area of the bot- 
tom of the cistern ncarhj. 

3. Multiply this by the number of feet in depth ; this will give the cubic 
contents in feet. 

4. Multiply the last product by 1,728 (tlie number of cubic inches in a 
foot), which gives the number of cubic inches. 


5. Divide the whole result by 231 (tlie number of cubic inches in the wine 
gallon), and the result will be the number of gallons in the cistern. 

Divide the gallons by 30, and you will have the number of barrels, and 
thus you can calculate how large to make a cistern for the use of house or 
barn ; and be sure not to neglect so important and so inexpensive an im- 
provement as making a cistern. 

335. Digging Wells. — There is no better improvement put upon a farm 
than wells, either in their every-day convenience or value in estimating 
the price of a farm. In some localities it will pay to dig a well at the 
house, at the barn, in the stable-yard, and in almost every field. In com- 
pact earth, a well can be dug without curbing to Bujjport the earth sides 
during the excavation. 

Where curbing is necessary, the best way to do it is to build the wall 
upon a wooden or iron ring, and let that down as the excavation proceeds, 
adding brick or stone at the top as fast as may be necessary to keep the wall 
even with the surface. 

336. Horizontal Wells. — Here is a new idea for dwellers in mountainous, 
or even moderately hilly districts to think of. Mining after coal in Penn- 
sylvania, and gold in California, has clearly illustrated the fact, that wells 
may be dug into hillsides, or banks, or bluffs, as well level or horizontally, 
as down perpendicularly, which would save dangerous and severe labor. 
Water, so troublesome in digging common wells, has not to be bailed in the 
horizontal, as it takes care of itself. The certainty of discovering or ci;tting 
off veins of water is greater with the horizontal well than the perpendicular, 
if it starts in near the base of a hill, or anywhere as much below the surface 
as a common shaft would be likely to be sunk. By laying down wooden rails, 
all the dirt can be brought out in a little railway car, and the stone or brick 
carried in to build the well as fast as the digging progresses. It will not 
be necessary to make a horizontal shaft any larger than a perpendicular 
one, though it should be of a different shape. We would make it in the 
form of the figure we call a naught or cipher in numerals. Two feet wide 
and four feet high will be large enough, with a gentle descent for the water 
to run to the outlet ; and in many situations it can be made to run through 
a short pipe into the house ; or if it will not run, it can be drawn by a pump 
through a horizontal pipe any distance. 

There is another advantage in such a well. It would not be constantly 
liable to have things falling, or being thrown into it, and the water would 
remain purer. 

There are a great many pastures where water for stock has to be drawn 
from wells, which might have a natural flow from hillsides, with an expend- 
iture of no more time and money than is required for a perpendicular well. 

There are some dairy farms that could have valuable spring-houses sup- 
plied by such a horizontal well, and such a supply of cold running water 
would add to the value of the farm almost as much, in some cases, as its 
whole value is now. 

31i THE FARMERY. [Chap. III. 

Such wells have been constructed in California, and wo earnestly com- 
mend them to the attention of all the farmers in the hilly portions of the 
Atlantic States. In rocky hills a horizontal shaft can be drifted in much 
easier than it can be bored perpendicularly ; and the work either in rock 
or earth digging can be much better done in winter in a horizontal than in 
a perpendicular well. We hope to see them extensively adopted. 

337. Wells on liills> — We have seen a great many wells on the tops of hills 
affording a large supply of water, while the bottom was above the plain or 
valley in which the farmstead was situated. How easy to obtain this water 
by a siphon, or a pipe inserted on a level, which can be done without dig- 
ging a ditch the whole depth and distance. Ascertain where the level of 
the bottom of the well will strike on the face of the hill, and dig in there, 
and set up a frame to support an earth-boring auger, and drive a bore 
straight through to the well, which can be easily done one or two hundred 
feet, if artesian wells can be bored one or two thousand feet perpendicular. 
Where the distance is too great, or the hill is rocky, put in a siphon pipe, 
with a little hand-pump to start it, and you can always have running water 
in your yard or garden at the foot of the hill. 

33S. Causes of Impure Water in WellSi — It sometimes occurs that the water 
of a well, noted for its purity and delicious drinking quality, becomes 
offensive to the taste and smell without any apparent cause. Sometimes it 
is occasioned by surface water from an impure source finding its way to the 
well, after many years of exemption ; and sometimes it co