Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952 Page: 2
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2 REPORT ON EXPERIMENT STATIONS, 19 5 2
The unprecedented ability of the American farmer to produce agricultural
commodities is an example of the rapid industrialization of
this country and its high standard of living. The United States has
emerged from a land predominantly rural to a highly industrialized
nation. The farm population in 1951 accounted for only 15.1 percent
of the total population, yet the farmers produced sufficient agricultural
products to supply the needs of the domestic population of this
country and in addition huge quantities for export. The output per
man-hour on the farm in 1951 was 45 percent above that of 1940 and
86 percent above that of 1930.
There is every indication that greater improvements in our standard
of living in the future, as in the past, will depend largely upon a
greater degree of farm efficiency and productivity. The principal
way to increase food and fiber production for our growing population
is to obtain increased yields from land already in production.
This will require the continued efforts of scientifically trained agronomists,
plant and animal geneticists, plant and animal pathologists,
entomologists, farm-management and marketing specialists, chemists,
nutritionists, horticulturists, agricultural engineers, and others.
Scientists are constantly developing new research techniques that
bring about greater precision in scientific observations. Better statistical
methods developed from time to time are also making valuable
contributions to the field of scientific research. Time-and-motion
studies and other industrial engineering procedures, already being
used as effective tools in finding ways of accomplishing given tasks
efficiently, offer relatively new approaches to agricultural research.
Each year the experiment stations are taxed to the limit of their
resources to find solutions for immediately pressing farm problems.
In recent years the stations have placed increased emphasis on organized
basic research. They have been aided in this by such new tools
as the electron microscope and radioactive materials. These have
made it possible to probe more deeply into many phenomena of nature,
such as the functioning of various organs in the animal body, the
mechanism of plant and animal nutrition, and the various chemical
and physical interchanges that take place in the different kinds of soil
under the management and cropping practices followed by farmers.
An increasing number of younger scientists trained in the use of these
newer tools and techniques is becoming available to agricultural experiment
With the greater emphasis on fundamental research has come a
closer integration of staff activity at the respective institutions. In
every specialized field of agricultural science there is a growing recognition
of the staff concept that knowledge must be shared and efforts
pooled to insure the greatest over-all progress. In the integrated
studies of fundamental problems relating to agriculture lie the promise
of greater things to come in the tomorrow of American agriculture.
In this 1952 report the Office of Experiment Stations has singled
out for special emphasis, typical representative examples of the rapid
advances made in the mechanization of crop production through research
at the State agricultural experiment stations. Nowhere can the
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United States. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952, book, January 1953; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5990/m1/4/: accessed February 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.