1850 The mechanization of field agriculture began. Mechanical reapers, and later the internal combustion engine (and consequently the tractor) altered the face of the world – and the growth and increasing urbanization of the world population. Between 1860 and 1920, about 1,000,000,000 acres of new land were brought under cultivation, with another 1,000,000,000 acres coming into production during the following six decades. Improvements in shipping, refrigeration, and processing further industrialized this process. In the late 20th century, an American farmer received 4% of the price of chicken in the store and 12% of the price of a can of corn. (Ponting, 1991)
1850 John Jeffrey was sent to Oregon by a consortium called the Oregon Association of Edinburgh. His plant introductions to England included incense cedar and Jeffrey pine. (Spongberg, 1990)
1850 Seed of alfalfa (Medicago sativa) were brought by a gold miner from Chile to California, where the plant thrived as a forage crop. (Heiser, 1981)
1850 President Millard Fillmore invited Andrew Jackson Downing to design an arboretum and pleasure ground as landscape for the Washington Mall. (Morgan in Punch, 1992; O’Malley, in Meyers, 1998) [See 1841]
1851 Hofmeister (Friederich Wilhelm Benedikt Hofmeister) described alternation of generations in higher plants in his book Comparative Researches into Growth, Development and Fruit-formation of the Higher Cryptogams (mosses, ferns, Equisetaceae, Rhizocarpae and Lycopodiaceae) and Seed-formation in Conifers. (Morton, 1981)[see: The genius of Wilhelm Hofmeister: the origin of causal-analytical research in plant development, Donald R. Kaplan and Todd J. Cooke, 19996, Am. J. Bot, 83(12): 1647-1660 JSTOR)
1851 An importation of California grapes to Europe introduced white mildew (oidium), which eventually was treated with flowers of sulphur. The subsequent introduction of California rootstocks as a possible cure brought phylloxera, a much more problematic root aphid that can devastate entire acreages.
1851 A great glass structure, the Crystal Palace, designed by Joseph Paxton as the centerpiece of the first Great Exhibition, was opened. Paxton was knighted for his efforts. (Hix, 1974.) This was the same year in which England’s Window Tax was repealed, a change that followed the 1845 repeal of the Glass Excise Tax. Horticulturists had been among those who augured for this tax relief, as the use of glass enclosures boomed in response to shipping and housing of tropical plants. (see The Regency Redingote website.)
1851 Beginning around 1820 and enduring for over 80 years, the “baked ‘tato man’” was common on London streets, selling hot baked potatoes from fall through early spring. By 1851 there were over 300 such vendors, selling ten tons of potatoes daily.Some accounts suggest that hot potatoes were at times purchased as hand warmers. (Zuckerman, 1998)
1851 On 28 September U.S. Army Captain Lorenzo Sitgreaves encountered petrified wood in the area near what is today’s Petrified Forest National Park. Shortly after his publication of this discovery, a large deposit of wood was encountered by another Army expedition (in what is today the northern section of the park). Lt. Amiel Whipple, who led that second expedition, gave the name Lithodendron Wash to a nearby arroyo. The report of Whipple’s expedition, published in 1855, included the first illustration of these fossil deposits. (Petrified Forest, The Story behind the Scenery, Sidney Ash, 1998, 10th printing; Petrified Forest Museum Association)
1851 Stephen Elliott, Jr., (an Episcopal Priest, and Senior Bishop of the Episcopal Church in the South during the CivilWar) addressed the Central Agricultural Society of Georgia at Macon: “It is astonishing that, in a state so richly blessed as Georgia with all its advantages of Nature, so little attention should have been paid to horticulture either as a science or as an art. Each portion of the state has its peculiar beauties. The genial kindness of its climate assimilated the most precious plants of other countries to itself, and exotics like the camellia, the oleander, the gardenia, the tea roses, the kalmias, the rhododendrons, the azaleas, rifled from Asia, Africa, Persia, and China, have become indigenous in the state.” (L.P. Neely in Slosson, 1951)
1851 Hugh Low discovered the giant pitcher plant, Nepenthes rajah, on Mount Kinabalu in Borneo. F. W. Burbidge later introduced this astounding plant to reluctant cultivation.
1851 J. L. Clarke (medical research) describes use of Canadian Balsam as a mounting medium for making permanent slides. Other techniques used at the time included sugar water (lasting for about a year) and calcium chloride (more permanent, but not useful for all matter). Eventually, Canadian Balsam became the preferred mounting medium for all sciences. (Smith, 1915) Wikipedia (2018) notes that human physiologist Jan Evangelista Purkynë was the first to use Canada balsam for mounting slides (and other techniques). [See TL 1839 Orschatz]
1852 The Concord grape was discovered. Of uncertain origin, Concord became an important grape for eastern states with humid climates. (Heiser, 1981) It was introducedby Ephraim Wales Bull, of Concord, MA, who selected the clone from seedling wild grapes on his property and presented it to the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 1853. (Fussell, 1986)
1852 At his death, Charles Morgan Lemann left an estate that included his herbarium of over 50,000 specimens, documenting 30,000 plant species. Lemann bequeathed the collection to the University of Cambridge, stipulating that specimens would firt be studied by George Bentham (a Kew botanist). The 32 cases of specimens were sent to Bentham’s home, where he and his assistant dedicated seven years to mounting and study. (Webb, 2003)
1852 James Drummond (along with his son) made his last significant shipment of Australian plants to England, the results of his six major collecting expedition. Drummond’s botanical legacy is strong; over 100 new species were named for him (a third of which have turned out to be taxonomic synonyms.) But he was known for fragments rather than full specimens, due partially to difficult circumstances and shortage of paper. (Webb, 2003)
1853AlbertKellogg (native of South Carolina who had studied at Kentucky’s Transylvania College, and later traveled to San Francisco where he had a pharmacy) and six colleagues established the California Academy of Sciences. To one of the meetings, he brought some specimens and stories he had heard from A. T. Dowd about a giant new conifer in the Sierran foothills, southeast of Sacramento. William Lobb, who was at the meeting, left immediately for the area, collecting seed, mature cones, vegetative shoots, and two seedlings. He returned to San Francisco and quickly left for England. The two saplings were planted at the Veitch nursery in Exeter. John Lindley described the new species that December in Gardener’s Chronicles as Wellingtonia gigantea. (Spongberg, 1990) The name eventually accepted for this tree was Sequoiadendron giganteum.
1853 The first flower show held in California opened in San Francisco on 7 October. Among the entries were specimens from James Warren, of Sacramento, one of the first professional nurserymen to set up business in California (1849). Warren published the state’s first nursery catalog and initiated California Farmer, the state’s first agricultural and horticultural publication. By 1855, several nurseries operated along Folsom Street in San Francisco, including William Walker’s Golden Gate Nursery, James and William O’Donnell’s United States Nursery, and the Commercial Nurseries, a subsidiary of Highland Nursery in Newburgh, NY. A nursery from Napa County was represented in the 1854 flower show. (Taylor & Butterfield, 2003)
1853 At the age of 22, German botanist Heinrich Anton de Bary published his classic study of plant rust and smut diseases, unequivocally supporting the concept that these diseases are examples of fungal growth patterns. (Arthur Kelman, Lecture 4 inFrey,1994)
1854 Commodore Matthew C. Perry “opened” Japan’sdoors to the West with signing of the Treaty of Kamagawa. Exchanges between the two countries included an American agricultural exhibit managed by Dr.James Morrow, assisted by S. Wells Williams, a Protestant missionary in China. Dried specimens from this first trip went to Williams’ boyhood friend, the Harvard botanist Asa Gray. These specimens were quickly followedby collections from Charles Wright, who had been working in the North Pacific as botanist on a US Surveying Expedition, and was able to go directly to Japan once the treaty was signed. (Spongberg, 1990) [See1861]
1854 Culminating a series of attempts dating from 1832, Mexico’s Escuela Nacional de Agricultura (ENA) was established by retrofitting the convent of San Jacinto. The college continued to face tribulations, but by 1907 had graduated 175 professionals under a curriculum heavily influenced by French science and practice. In 1964 the school was reorganized as the Universidad Autónoma Chapingo. The institution houses Mexico’s National Museum of Agricultura and is noted for its extensive (700 sq meters) Diego Rivera mural Tierra Fecundada. (Wikipedia, 2017 various entries; Cotter, 2003)
1854 Walden was first published. In this heavily wrought set of recollections and thoughts, Henry David Thoreau captures the essence of self-participation in nature and wildness.
John Updike celebrates it as such: “A century and a half after its publication, Walden has become such a totem of the back-to-nature, preservationist, anti-business, civil- disobedience mindset, and Thoreau so vivid a protester, so perfect a crank and hermit saint, that the book risks being as revered and unread as the Bible.” Today Walden stands as a beginning moment for contemporary environmentalism.
1855 Rudolf Virchow, a famous pathologist who had observed and named Leukemia and advanced our understanding of cells in many ways,, published his well-known line: “Omnis cellula e cellula” – which states that all cells come from existing cells. Until the mid-19th century, the origins of new cells was not so clear. People wondered if, perhaps, cells crystallized from unorganized matter, or even de novo, i.e. through spontaneous generation.
1855 First steps were taken toward eventual production of rayon. After 1900, technology would be developed to allow production of rayon and cellophane. Both are products derived from cellulose extracted from wood chips. (Simpson, 1989)
1855 The first Alabama State Agricultural Society Fair was held (in Montgomery), in which premiums were offered for displays of trees, plants, and fruit. (M.B. Sulzby in Slosson, 1951)
1856 William Henry Perkin, while attempting to synthesize quinine (at the age of 18) came up with a dye that became known as Perkin’s Mauve. Based on this discovery (the first aniline dye), Perkins obtained a patent and established his own dyeworks in Greenford, England. By 1859 the color was named mauve (for the color of mallow flowers) and the chemical itself was termed mauveine. (Wikipedia, 2016) [See 1880] Perkin’s discovery would surface in the world of plant and animal science, as well a medicinal study, as an important histological stain called Toluidine Blue, abbreviated as TBO. In simple plant study, TBO is a fast stain that works with fresh preparations; just make a fresh mount of plant tissue, drop on some TBO solution, cover with a slip, and view immediately. It is a gorgeous stain. “Toluidine blue is a basic thiazine metachromatic dye with high affinity for acidic tissue components, thereby staining tissues rich in DNA and RNA. It has found wide applications both as vital staining in living tissues and as a special stain owing to its metachromatic property.” (quote fro: Gokul Sridharan and Akhil A Shankar “Toluidine blue: A review of its chemistry and clinical utility” J Oral Maxillofac Pathol. 2012 May- Aug; 16(2): 251–255. doi: 10.4103/0973-029X.99081 PMCID: PMC3424943. PMID:22923899) (Products listed as TB may include zinc, whereas stains listed as TBO are the chloride salt. see Sigma-Aldrich T3260)
1856 The biological importance of aniline dyes (see Perkin, immediately above) as biological stains became so apparent that new dyes quickly followed: Basic Fuchsin (1856), Safranin (Williams in 1859), Methyl violet (by Lauth in 1861), Aniline Blue and Sprit Blue (by Girard and deLalpe in 1861), Eosin (by Caro in 1871), Methyl Green (by Lauth ad Boubigne in 1871), Thionin (by Lauth in 1876), Methylene Blue (by Caro in 1876), Acid Fuchsin (by Caro in 1877), Orange G (by Baum in 1878), Sudan III (byRumf and Garasche in 1879), and Azure B (by Bernthsen in 1885). By 1900, 52 of 81important monoazo dyes had been synthesized. (Clark & Kasten,1983)
1856 H. Lucas, A pharmacist working in Arnstadt (near the capital of Thuringia, in Germany), isolated a white powder, an alkyloid (that he named taxine), from Yew tree foliage. Herbalists had long been interested in Yew (Taxus) since it was anciently known as toxic. The first purified crystals of taxine (now understood to be a complex of alkyloids) were precipitated by French chemist W. Marmé in 1876.(Wikipedia, 2018)
1856 Calanthe ×dominii flowered. This is the world’s first planned orchid hybrid, raised by John Dominy for Veitch & Sons. Though horticulturists were enthusiastic, botanist John Lindley was quoted as remarking: “You will drive the botanists mad.” (Fletcher, 1969)
1857 William Miller (in Elements of Chemistry: Theoretical and Practical, Part III) coined the term sucrose, as a combination of “sucre” and the Latin root “ose” – which relates to sugars.
1857 Prosper Alphonse Berckmans (of Arschot, Belgium) assumed management of Fruitland Nursery in Augusta, Georgia. By 1861 the nursery offered more than 100 Camellia cultivars. Berckmans’ original house and grounds are now part of the Augusta National Golf Course. (L.P. Neely in Slosson, 1951)
1857 Ferdinand Mueller was appointed Director of the Botanic Gardens in Melbourne, Australia Though many people today regard this appointment as the beginning of systematic botany in Australia, a Royal Commission charged with investigating Victoria’s botanic gardens was not impressed by study of native plants, using the report to recommended Mueller’s removal (14 December 1871), complaining that the director failed to establish “a place where the whole colony could study horticulture, arboriculture, floriculture, and landscape gardening in their most perfect forms… a model of careful and thorough cultivation of well planned scenic effect, of art skillfully applied to the embellishment of nature.” Lionel Gilbert (1986) writes: “When he was ousted, the Botanic Garden by the Yarra became beautiful but intellectually void. Systematic botany in Victoria has been a long time recovering.” (Webb2003)
1858 Charles Darwin and Alfred Wallace were hastily paired to jointly present their ideas “On the Tendency of Species to form Varieties; and on the Perpetuation of Varieties and Species by Natural Means of Selection” before the Linnean Society of London. Darwin had been slow and cautious about publishing his concepts concerning evolution. When a letter
describing many of the same, independently conceived ideas arrived from Wallace to be read before the Society, arrangements were made to establish Darwin’s priority – as he had been circulating drafts of future publications among friends in London.
1858 Invention of the Mason jar stimulated use of large quantities of white sugar for preserves, reducing traditional reliance on maple sugar and molasses for home cooking. Usage of white sugar in the United States doubled between 1880 (when the tariff on imported sugar was lowered) and 1915. (Root, 1980)
1858 The Royal Horticultural Society instituted its First Class Certificate of Merit (FCC). By the following year the Floral Committee was established and given management of the FCC (Fletcher, 1969) The first orchid to be awarded an FCC was Cattleya ×dominiana, shown by the Veitch firm. (Reinikka, 1972)
1858 Beginning with a small quantity of alfalfa seed, Minnesota farmer, Wendelin Grimm, cultivated a crop over many years, eventually selecting seed resistant to winter kill. In 1900 the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station produced quantities of the seed and released it as a variety. (Busch, et al,1995)
1858 Friedrich August Kekulé published his structural theory of chemical compounds in a paper on 19 May, describing concepts concerning the tetravalent nature of carbon and its chain-forming capabilities. Archibald Scott Couper had envisioned similar ideas and also written a paper, the publication of which was forestalled, not occurring until 14 June. Perhaps this critical loss of priority in publication coupled with apparent pre-existing mental stress, as Couper became mentally unstable soon afterward. “Described as a wreck by an acquaintance, he lived out his life tending flowers.” (Cobb & Goldwhite,1995)
1858 “Suel Foster came to Bloomington (now Muscatine, Iowa) in 1836. After getting married and making a trip to California he returned to Bloomington and established the Fountain Hill Nursery of over 100 acres. In 1856, as writer for the Iowa Farmer and Horticulturist he took up the subject of schooling for farmers, insisting that Iowa must have a Farmers College. Following several publication of this proposal, in January 1858 the Iowa Legislature (General Assembly) passed an act to establish an Iowa Agricultural College which was signed by Governor Ralph Lowe on March 22, and appropriated $10,000 for support. Suel Foster was appointed to the first Board of Trustees and the Charter which was developed included the requirement that horticulture be taught. A site for the college was selected in a prairie west of Ames. When the Morrill Act, the Land Grant College Act, was passed July 2, 1862 and on September 11, 1862 Iowa was the first state to accept provisions of the act and received a grant of over 294,300 acres of Government land.” (quote from Charles Hall, History page, Iowa State University, Department of Horticulture website: http://hort.iastate.edu
1859 Asa Gray published his idea that the North American and Eurasian floras had at one time been homogeneous. He proposed that Pleistocene glaciation had separated the floras and through evolution (a new concept he had learned through personal correspondence with Charles Darwin) the species had become distinct. Gray became Darwin’s leading advocate in US debates.
1859 British farming observer James Caird, in his book Prairie Farming in America, noted that export of grain through Chicago was about 100 bushels in 1837, 2,243,000 bushels in 1847, and nearly 18 million bushels annually by 1857. (Mingay, 1977)
1859 Charles Darwin published On the origin of species by means of natural selection…. As explained by Darwin, evolution is a simple change in character of a population of either plants or animals. Circumstances governing the success of a population are not neutral, rather the environment favors certain characteristics, which creates a natural system of selection that can lead to changes in the makeup of a population. Gradual change in a population can lead to differences that qualify the population as a distinctive enough to become a new species – thus the “origin” of species. By identifying a mechanism that could lead to the diversity of life on earth, Darwin rewrote the book on relationships of plants and interpretations of plant adaptations. My favorite quotation from Origin: “We have seen that man by selection can certainly produce great results, and can adapt organic beings to his own uses, through the accumulation of slight but useful variations, given to him by the hand of nature. But Natural Selection as we shall hereafter see, is a power incessantly ready for action, and is as immeasurably superior to man’s feeble efforts, as the works of Nature are to those of Art.” (HNT)
1859 In A Tale ofTwo Cities, Charles Dickens ridiculed French aristocracy through description of the ritual of chocolate consumption: “Monseigneur could swallow a great many things with ease, and was by some few sullen minds supposed to be rather rapidly swallowing France, but, his morning’s chocolate could not so much as get into the throat of Monseigneur, without the aid of four strong men besides the Cook. Yes. It took four men, all four a-blaze with gorgeous decoration, and the Chief of them unable to exist with fewer than two gold watches in his pocket, emulative of the noble and chaste fashion set by Monseigneur, to conduct the happy chocolate to Monseigneur’s lips. One lacquey carried the chocolate into the sacred presence; a second, milled and frothed the chocolate with a little instrument he bore for that function; a third, presented the favoured napkin; a fourth (he of the two gold watches), poured the chocolate out. It was impossible for Monseigneur to dispense with one of these attendants on the chocolate and hold his high place under the admiring heavens. Deep would have been the blot upon his escutcheon if his chocolate had been ignobly waited on by only three men; he must have died of two.”
1859 Henry Shaw’s Garden (later to become the Missouri Botanical Garden) opened to the public in St. Louis. Mr. Shaw was inspired to develop his garden by an 1851 trip to England, where he viewed the Great Exhibition and the grounds of estates such as Chatsworth, (Missouri Botanical Garden website)
1860 John Gould Veitch sent 17 new species of conifer from Japan to England, as well as seed and plants of other horticulturally valuable stock. His most popular introduction from that trip, however, became Boston ivy, Parthenocissus tricuspidata.
1860 In this decade, coffee rust (Hemileia vastatrix) infested and destroyed Ceylon’s coffee plantations, eliminating 250,000 acres of plantings. By 1867, James Taylor had overseen clearing of 19 acres, which he had planted to Assam tea. By 1875, over 1000 acres were converted, a coverage that grew to 305,000 acres by the end of the century. (Hohenegger, 2007)
1860 Charles G. Williams pyrolized (cooked to the point it broke into smaller components) natural rubber, and discovered it is made of units of a compound he named isoprene (C5H8). Eventually, isoprene was discovered to be a significant plant product that is ever- present in the atmosphere. We now understand that sterols are, essentially, sis isoprene units. Indeed, isoprene is produced at a very low level by humans, perhaps in relationship to cholesterol pathways, and is thus present in exhaled breath. (Thomas Karl, et al, 2001, Human breath isoprene and its relation to blood cholesterol levels: new measurements and modeling, J Appl Physiol 91:762-770, pdf online)
1860 An 1860 report stated that 70,000 weed seed were isolated from 2 pints of clover seed imported from England. (Ennis, in The Yearbook of Agriculture 1962)
1860 E. Douwes Dekker published his novel Max Havelaar under pseudonym. A former Dutch Colonial Officer in Java, Dekker revealed the inhumane treatment of native workers in Dutch East Indian colonies. The resulting arousal of public concern forced governmental reforms. The Dutch held control of Javan and Sumatran spice production until WWII. (Rosengarten, 1969
1860 Joseph Hooker’s Flora Tasmaniae, which was published between 1855 and 1860 is dedicated to Ronald Campbell Gunn and William Archer. Of Gunn, Hooker writes: “There are few Tasmanian plants that Mr. Gunn has not seen alive, noted their habits in a living state, and collected large suits of specimens with singulaf tact and judgement. These have all been transmitted to England in perfect preservation, and are accompanied with notes that display remarkable powers of observation, and a facility for seizing important characters in the physiognomy of plants, such as few experienced botanists possess.” (Webb, 2003) William Archer, a native to Tasmania, was an architect and amateur botanist and botanical artist.
1861 A new treaty with Japan in 1858 [sic] led to a race by American and European plantspeople to collect and introduce plants from these islands. Field collectors included Carl Maximowicz who sent plants to Russia, Max Ernst Wichura from Germany, and Richard Oldham from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew (re. Bambusa oldhamii). George Rogers Hall, an American resident of Yokohama, sent a huge shipment in 1861 to Francis L. Lee of Chestnut Hill, MA. Lee went to war and left Francis Parkman, explorer, neighbor, and friend, to curate the growing collection. (Parkman would become Professor of Horticulture at Harvard in 1871). Thomas Hogg (son of a Scottish emigrant and nurseryman, sent to Japan by Lincoln as a US Marshal) shipped plants to his brother, James, as well as to the Parson’s firm at Flushing, NY. His introductions included the Japanese stewartia, the fragrant snowbell, the sapphire berry, and the katsura tree. (Spongberg, 1990) [See 1854]
1861 Australian Charles Ledger managed to purchase seed of a Cinchona tree, the bark of which was said to be a good source of quinine. The Dutch purchased a quantity of his seed, using them to establish plantations in Java. Those trees, determined to represent the new species Cinchona ledgeriana, yielded bark that was indeed a very good source of quinine, making Java the world’s major source of quinine in the first half of the 20th century. (Le Couteur & Burreson, 2003)
1861 Botanist and explorer Charles Parry named several Colorado mountain peaks for active and significant botanists: James Peak for geologist/botanist Edwin James, Engelmann Peak (Mount Engelmann, one of the highest summits in the Front Range of the Rockies) for St. Louis botanist George Engelmann, Grays Peak (the highest summit on North America’s Continental Divide) for esteemed botanist AsaGray, and Torreys Peak for taxonomist John Torrey (Beidleman, 2006)
1861 Louis Pasteur published the results of his trials regarding spontaneous generation (an ancient idea he did not support), in response to a challenge issued by the French Academy of Sciences. The Alhumbert Prize would go to the first person presenting clear proof to support or refute the lingering idea of spontaneous generation (note, the cell theory had already been established, and Rudolf Virchow had already stated (1855) that all cells come from cells). After review by the appointed commission (members of which were Claude Bernard, Adophe Brongniart, Victor Coste, Pierre Florrens, and Henri Milne-Edwards, Pasteur was awarded the prize in 1862. (Raynaud, 2017) NOTE: Pasteur seems to have devised his experiments for the simple purpose of driving a silver spike in the specter of spontaneous generation, which though completely discredited, haunted contemporary cytologists.
1862 Charles Darwin published the first thorough study of orchid pollination, On the various contrivances by which British and Foreign orchids are fertilised by insects, and on the good effects of intercrossing.
1862 Joseph Hooker reported on the discovery two years earlier in West Africa of Welwitschia mirabilis. He considered this find “the most wonderful, in a botanical point of view, that has been brought to light during the present century.” (Desmond, 1987)
1862 George Rogers Hall returned from Japan and brought seed, plants, and Wardian [See 1842] cases of material to Flushing, NY, which he entrusted to the Parsons & Co. Nursery. Included were the kobus magnolia, the star magnolia, zelkova, Japanese maples, wisterias, raisin tree, etc. Also in this shipment was the future weed, Japanese honeysuckle, initially called Hall’s honeysuckle. Some of Hall’s plants in Yokohama had been obtained from Siebold. (Spongberg, 1990)[See 1823].
1862 Specimens obtained by Jean Pierre Armand David, a Basque in the Lazarist priesthood who moved to China in 1862, form the basis of Plantae Davidianae, in which Adrien Franchet of the Museum at the Jardin des Plantes described nearly 1500 new species.
1862 Congress passed a series of bills constituting the US Morrill Land-Grant College Act, which were signed by President Abraham Lincoln. At this same time the US Department of Agriculture was created, having been established earlier as a division of the Patent Office, with head of the division, Issac Newton, continuing as Commissioner.These events set the stage for the first State Agricultural Experiment Stations (those in California and Connecticut in 1875). Over 13,000,000 acres of federal land were given to states to support the establishment of colleges for the agricultural and mechanical arts. By 1900 there were 60 Agricultural Experiment Stations. On 20 May of the same year Lincoln signed the Homestead Act, which opened nearly half of the continental US to settlement. (Baker, in Ewan, 1969; Rasmussen & Baker, in The Yearbook of Agriculture 1962) In this same year, the Homestead Act (the first of several) was signed into law, This law opened western territories to settlement through granting homesteads of 160 acres to new settlers, who then had five years in which to purchase the land at an incredibly modest price. Over the next seven decades, 1.6 million homesteads would be granted, conferring 10% of the US land area to small farms. (Wikipedia, 2018) Introduction of barbed wire in the following decade enclosed western lands and became part of the short-lived, tragic epoch of open range and trail drives. (Christopher Knowlton, 2018)
1862 Partially to deal with Civil War debt, Congress established a Commissioner of Internal Revenue. One tax collected was on whiskey, beginning at $.20 per gallon in 1863, the tax rose to $2 per gallon by 1865. (Fussell, 1992) [TL 1791, Whiskey Rebellion]
1862 In Portland, Maine, Nathan and Isaac Winslow introduced a method of canning sweet corn, which was a great success for their Winslow Packing Company. The popularity of canned corn would spur further developments, including John Winters’ 1884 continuous corn cooker, an improved corn cutter developed by Welcome Sprague in 1888, and steam cooking by John Jennings in 1903. Canning companies moved closer to the Midwest sources of corn, and Hoopeston, Illinois became “the Sweet Corn Capital of tthe World.”(Clampitt, 2015)
1863 Wilhelm von Waldeyer is credited with having introduced Hematoxylin (also Haematoxylin) as a biological stain for microtomy, though biologists used “campeche” beforehand. Today, Haematoxylin is used as a nuclear counter-stain in combination with the synthetic dye Eosine Y, a common treatment simply called H & E, which yields nicely- differentiated nuclei and differential staining of tissues (animal). The compound, extracted from wood of the Central American shrubby legume, Haematoxylum campechianum(also called logwood or bloodwood) was used by indigenous peoples and had been known and used as a commercial dye in Europe since its introduction in the 16th century. .(I can’t afford the level of access, but if you want to pay $44 for a 24-hour rental, go for John J. Gurecki, 1984. “The History of Hematoxylin” Laboratory Medicine, Volume 15, Issue 6, 1 June 1984, Pages 423-425, https://doi.org/10.1093/labmed/15.6.423
1864 Jabez Burns, an English immigrant to the US introduced his self-emptying roaster, designed to evenly roast and then eject coffee beans. With coffee, freshness of the roasted beans was so critical that grocers and individuals acquired raw beans for local roasting. Burns’s roaster became popular quickly and offered the capability to standardize this process, leading to the branding and marketing of coffees. (Pendergrast, 1999) Vacuum packaging, which was introduced in the mid-20th century, has mitigated this concern.
1864 George Perkins Marsh published Man and Nature: Or, Physical Geography as Modified by Human Action. Having lived in the Mediterranean Basin (as a US diplomat appointed by President Zachary Taylor in 1849), Marsh compiled sufficient understanding to support his thesis, which describes how relentless deforestation gave rise to increasing aridity. Marsh is considered one of the country’s earliest conservationists/ environmentalists. (McKibben, 2008; Wikipedia, 2017)
1865 Joseph Dalton Hooker became Director of Kew.
1865 Since 1633 Europeans had known of the anti-malarial properties of extracts from the bark of a South American tree, the cinchona. One of many attempts to cultivate the tree yielded success through seed sent by Charles Ledger (from a plant then given the name Cinchona ledgeriana) to Europe. Those seed, collected in Bolivia by a native worker (Manuel Incra Mamani), were offered for sale. The British, stung by low-yielding plantations they had established in India, declined the opportunity. Dutch traders, however, purchased a pound of seed that were used to establish a plantation in Java. (It is claimed that the seed produced 12,000 trees.) As a result, the Dutch held near-total control of quinine production for a century. (Lewington, 1990) [See 1658, 1820]
1865 In correspondence published in The Southern Cultivator, Joseph Le Conte, owner of Woodmanston (a private botanical garden in Liberty County, Georgia) commented: “While the Northern regions are frozen and blocked with ice, in Georgia we have growing, in the open air that beautiful plant, the Camellia Japonica, and in full bloom on the third day of January, 1865, plants from five to ten feet high, with from thirty to one hundred and fifty flowers of nearly every shade of color, from snow white to dark crimson, present a sight gorgeous and imposing. The single flowered camellias bear seed, which ripen in September, nearly twelve months, therefore, after the blooms, the latter appearing from October to April of the preceding winter. From the seed endless varieties may be obtained.” (L.P.Neely in Slosson, 1951)
1866 Gregor Mendel discovered and published the basic patterns of inheritance and his understanding of the hereditary nature of variation between individuals in a population. It is puzzling that Mendel’s works, though highly complementary to Darwin’s concepts, were not brought forth for general scientific discussion until after 1900.
1866 Eighteen year old Jack Newton Daniel established his distillery in Tennessee. (Fussell, 1992)
1866 The American Wood Paper Company was established in Philadelphia, based on development of techniques for dissolving wood fibers (using caustic soda, i.e. lye) to create the pulp needed for manufacturing paper. The original source of pulp in North America was the poplar, at first Populus tremuloides and P. grandidentata, later P. balsamifera. Poplar remained popular until replaced by the use of spruce. Maine became a major source for poplar, and later for spruce, eventually supporting 25 pulp mills. The pulp craze meant that paper corporations would begin purchasing timberlands from lumber companies. (Connor, 1994) [See 1769; 1840]
1866 Thomas Newton Dickinson constructed a distillery in Essex, Connecticut, to manufacture witch hazel extract. Extracts sold today are 86% distillate and 14% alcohol. The company, still in business, continues to harvest its witch hazel from southern New England. (Connor, 1994)
1867 Through the work of Oliver Kelly, the first Granges (the Patrons of Husbandry, i.e. the Grange) were organized. Kelly had been sent as an agent of the US Department of Agriculture to the South “to proceed immediately through the States lately in hostility against the Government…the relations …having prevented this Department from obtaining the usual statistical and other information.” While on this venture Kelly, according to his own statement formulated “the idea of a Secret Society of Agriculturists, as an element to restore kindly feelings among the people.” (Rasmussen, 1960)
1867 On 2 May, Thomas Hanbury purchased La Mortola. In partnership with his botanist brother, Daniel Hanbury, the Italian estate prospered as a significant collection of exotic plants. The estate remained in the Hanbury family until 1960, when it was given to the Italian government. In 1983, La Mortola was transferred to management of the University of Genoa. (Quest-Ritson, 1992)
1867 A turpentine still blew up in Butte County, California when the distiller used pitch from Jeffrey pine (Pinus jeffreyi) rather than Ponderosa pine (P. ponderosa). Chemists would later determine that the resin of Jeffrey pine contains the chemical abietin – which is nearly pure heptane. Jeffrey pine resin became a primary source for heptane, which was used to assay gasolines to establish the octane rating. (Arno, 1973)
1867 Crossing of China tea roses with Hybrid Perpetuals yielded ‘La France’, the first Hybrid Tea. (Grimshaw, 1998) [See 1802, 1817]
1868 James Arnold left a portion of his estate in trust and Harvard agreed to establish the Arnold Arboretum.
1868 J. W. Hyatt was awarded a $10,000 prize for his invention of a process to manufacture plastic billiard balls, using a mixture of camphor and nitro-cellulose. (Lewington, 1990) [See 1846]
1868 German chemists Carl Graebe and Carl Liebermann, working for BASF, discovered the formula for alizarin (the red chemical in madder, Rubia tinctoria) and were successful in synthesizing this dye from anthracine. Production began, and by 1869 the cost of natural madder in London had dropped by 70% . (Finlay, 2002)
1868 Maria Ann Smith began harvesting fruit from a volunteer seedling apple she encountered on the family farm in Eastwood (near Sidney), Australia. The apple, which proved useful for cooking, was propagated and introduced as ‘Smith’s Seedling’, later christened ‘Granny Smith’s Seedling.‘ In 1890, twenty years after Maria’s death, the apple was introduced at the Castle Hill Agricultural and Horticultural Show. The following year, Maria’s introduction won the Castle Hill prize for cooking apples. (Wikipedia, 2017)
1868 Manuel M. Villarda and other luminaries founded the Sociedad Mexicana de Historia Natural. Disbanded in 1914, the Society was revived in 1936, initiating publication of the Revista de la Sociedad Mexicana de Historia Natural in 1939.
1868 “Sometimes, again, you see them occupied for hours together in spoiling a pretty flower with pointed instruments, out of a stupid curiosity to know what the flower is made of… Is its colour any prettier or its scent any sweeter, when you know?” Wilkie Collins, The Moonstone.
1869 Pathologist Edwin Klebs introduced paraffin as an enclosing medium for microtomy (Klebs identified the bacterium that causes Diphtheria). By 1881, researchers began to dissolve paraffin in chloroform, which ushered in the era of paraffin-imbedded material for thin-slicing, mounting, and staining. However, paraffin embedding did not become common until 1887, partly due to publications that year by S. Schönland and Jan Willem Moll. (Smith, 1915)
1869 By this year, Leopold Trouvelot appears to have imported the European gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) to Massachusetts, ostensibly in order to experiment with mating that moth to Asian silkworm moths (Bombyx mori.) Some of his gypsy moths escaped and established populations that have caused sustained devastation to Northeastern forests.
Free-ranging populations were first observed near the Trouvelot home in Medford by 1881, followed in 1889 by an outbreak of infestations in the township. A year later, infestations were noted in thirty surrounding townships, and in Rhode Island by 1901. Biologists have tracked the spread, which (by 1930) became the most significant tree problem in the Northeast. Its range continued to spread; leading to defoliation of over 12 million acres of forest in 1981. Combating gypsy moth has driven a chain of investigations and interventions, from widespread application of lead arsenate (in the early 1940s), to annual spraying of millions of forested acres with DDT in the 1950s, to early employment of Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis), to release of tens of millions of parasites and other natural enemies, to the first production and employment of sex pheromones in forestry. For over a century, gypsy moth (with over 350 known host plants) has caused great devastation in North America, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars spent on response and research. (Campana, 1999)
1869 John Wesley Powell, a noted geologist and cartographer, (and subsequently director of the US Geological Survey from 1881 to 1894) conducted the Powell Geographic Expedition of the Green River and Colorado River (published in his1878 Report on the Lands of the Arid Region of the United States). Powell’s studies of western arid states led to conclusions that rainfall in was insufficient to support extensive agricultural development. His accomplishments are yet more impressive when we understand Powell had lost most of his right arm in the Civil War Battle of Shiloh. Powell’s science could not thwart politics of the moment, resulting in tension that led to his 1894 resignation from the USGS. Despite his data and observations concerning western states, the US Congress passed (in 1902) An Act Appropriating the receipts from the sale and disposal of public lands in certain States and Territories to the construction of irrigation works for the reclamation of arid lands, as proposed by Nevada Representative Francis Newlands. This act underwrote establishment of the US Reclamation Service, under the US Geological Survey, within the Department of the Interior (to become the separate Bureau of Reclamation in 1907). The philosophy underlying “land reclamation” was that irrigation projects would impound sufficient water to make the desert bloom. (Wikipedia, 2016; see also: Kevin Burkman, John Wesley Powell and the Arid Empire of the American West, posted 16 May 2014, Rutgers Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, MCRP Vol.1)
1869 Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev published his organizational groundwork explaining the pattern of relationships in the properties of elements, the logic that underlies today’s periodic table. Missing from Mendeleev’s arrangement were the noble (rare) gases. Beginning with the discovery of helium (named for the sun because its spectral lines was first observed emanating from the sun), the remaining noble gases were soon isolated and given equally interesting names: argon (the lazy one), krypton (hidden), neon (new), xenon (the stranger), and radon (a disintegrative product of radium). (Cobb & Goldwhite, 1965)
1869 Biogeography comes of age with first publication of Alfred Russel Wallace’s compilation, The Malay Archipeligo: The land of the orang–utan, and the bird of paradise. A narrative of travel, with sketches of man and nature.
1869 Francis Dalton published Hereditary Genius, which was the famous statistician’s attempt to address questions arising from Darwin’s 1859 publication On the Origin of Species Establishing himself as an early commentator on eugenics, Dalton would continue his exploration, including his 1874 publication “On men of science, their nature and their nurture,” in Proceedings of the Royal Institution of Great Britain 7: 227–236. https://books.google.com/books?id=_uE-bpGo2N4C&pg=PA227#v=onepage
1870 Japanese plum (Prunus salicina) arrived in the US in 1870 when a Vacaville, CA grower imported it from Japan.
1870 During this decade the ‘Red Delicious’ apple was discovered in Iowa. The ‘Golden Delicious’ apple originated on a farm in West Virginia in 1910. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996)
1870 On 4 April, the City of San Francisco acquired land for Golden Gate Park. The park’s initial surveyor, William Hall, oversaw the first plans and plantings for the park. His career with the park ended with an forced resignation, when an employee he had dismissed was elected to the state legislature. Later, Hall became the State Engineer. (Taylor & Butterfield, 2003)
1872 The extent of an East India Company customs line workforce in India reached its peak of 14,188 staff. Their role: to maintain and police a customs barrier, from the Indus to Madras – a distance of over 2,000 miles. Formed of plant material with thorns, spines, and prickles (such as jujube, opuntia, and carissa), the hedge ranged from 10-14 feet high and six to twelve feet thick. The formal barrier eventually included 800 miles of living hedge, augmented by hundreds of miles of dried spiny plant material. Initiated in the 1840s, the project endured for almost 50 years. (Moxham, 2002)
1872 Julius Sterling Morton initiated the first US Arbor Day, on 10 April, in Nebraska. Many states and other countries followed this example through proclamation of their own arbor days. The golden anniversary of the Nebraska Arbor Day was celebrated in 1922, with Warren Harding proclaiming 22 April as a national Arbor Day. (Campana, 1999) Today, US Arbor Day is celebrated as the last Friday in April.
1872 Edward Lear published his Nonsense Songs, Stories, Botany, and Alphabets in London. Included were playful, nonsense plant names (which he illustrated), such as Queeriflora tabyöides, Tigerlillia terribilis, and Manypeeplia upsidownia. The names and illustrations are available on the internet, through sources such as Project Gutenberg. http://plantcurator.com/edward-lear-nonsense-botany/
1873 Celebrated as the year Eliza Tibbets first planted the seedless navel orange in Riverside, CA. By 1970, the seedless form of the navel orange had been brought to Washington, D.C., from Brasil through efforts of William Saunders. As chief botanist for the USDA, Saunders had grafted plants for distribution. Riverside resident Eliza (Mrs.Luther) Tibbets received two especially successful trees from which propagation material was taken. Her plants may have proven the ultimate source for the entire citrus industry. Though this seedless navel orange had been known in other countries beforehand, the Tibbets plants were christened the Washington Navel Orange, which became the cultivar name for this selection. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996, Ewan, 1969, Farmer, 2013, for most information, see: University of California, Riverside Citrus Variety Collection, citrusvariety.ucr.edu)
1873 Sander built his first greenhouse at St. Albans, England. The Sander firm began a system of tracking orchid hybrid (grex) names that was later institutionalized by the Royal Horticultural Society.
1873 Legislation created Yellowstone, the first National Park. (Morgan in Punch, 1992)
1874 Botanists came later to the game of using biological stains than zoologists. This was especially obvious as aniline dyes made their appearance. Between 1874 and 1881, Dahlia, Eosin, Methyl Violet, Iodine Violet, Safranin, Bismarck Brown, and Methylene Blue were showing up in publications on plant anatomy. (Smith, 1915)
1875 Daniel Peter and Henri Nestlé added condensed milk to chocolate to create milk chocolate. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996)
1875 The first agricultural experiment station in the US was established in Connecticut. After directing that effort for 14 years, W. O. Atwater relocated to Washington, D.C. to become director of the USDA Office of Experiment Stations, established as a result of the Hatch Act. (A. S., in The Yearbook of Agriculture 1962) [See 1887] In 1876, the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station would establish the first laboratory for seed testing in the United States. (Busch, et al, 1995)
1876 Benjamin Daydon Jackson published a facsimile of A Catalogue of Plants Cultivated in the Garden of John Gerard In the Years 1596-1599. Accompanying the reprint, Jackson gives his account of Gerard, and the production of Gerard’s famous Herball. In that account, Jackson credits Gerard with having published (in his Catalogue) one of theearliest listings that can be encountered of live plants in a cultivated garden. It was clear that Gerard was an accomplished gardener who knew and corresponded with many plant specialists. Significantly, Jackson lays waste to the first edition (1597) of Gerard’s Herball, as rife with plagiarism (the translation of Dodoens from Latin to English having been accomplished by a Mr. Priest, who Gerard does not credit) and misapplication of names. He explains that were it not for intervention and editing by L’Obel, the original publication would have been more faulty by a thousand points. Jackson insists the 1633 edition, edited by Thomas Johnson is “greatly superior in every respect.” (Internet Archive/Biodiversity Heritage Library – Source: Missouri BotanicalGarden)
1876 Darwin’s book Cross and Self Fertilization in the Vegetable Kingdom explained the concept of hybrid vigor, stimulating experiments and studies by other scientists. Though the basic concept of hybrid vigor had been discussed by various researchers during the earlier decades of this century, this was the first complete analysis and description. ©. Zirkle in Ewan, 1969)
1876 Courts in England determined that the term Worcestershire Sauce could not be trademarked, thus the Lea & Perrins Company, inventors of this widely-used brew, must always market their product as the “original” sauce. (Wikipedia, September 2017)
1876 Henry Wickham is said to have shipped 70,000 seed ofHevea brasiliensis (Rubber Tree) from Brasil to Kew Gardens, which distributed seed to Sr Lanka, Singapore, and Malaysia. At the time, Wickham would certainly have been considered a hero; indeed he was knighted in 1920. Times change. The current Wikipedia (2017) treatment describes Wickham as a bio-pirate who stole rubber tree seed.
1877 British traders sent seed of the rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) from Brasil to Malaya, followed three decades later by development of Dutch plantations in Sumatra. By 1930 Brasil had lost the rubber market to plantations in Malaya and elsewhere; the work of 150,000 rubber trappers slowly dried up, returning the Amazonian city of Manaus to obscurity. In the 1920s the US company Firestone turned the American near-colony of Liberia into a land of rubber, gaining a concession of 1,000,000 acres from the Liberian government. In 1943 the US dollar became Liberia’s currency. (Ponting, 1991) During WWII the US government, recognizing the importance of rubber harvest to the war effort, maintained a staff of plant pathologists in Liberia to help prevent importation of a leaf blight disease from South America. [See 1823, 1839, 1877, 1881]
1877 Frederick William Burbidge was sent to Borneo by James Veitch& Sons to collect orchids and other exotic plants. He met with Peter C. M. Veitch and they went to Kina Balu, Borneo’s Sugar Loaf Mountain, returning to England in 1879. The account of this trip was recorded in The Gardens of the Sun.
1877 W. J. Beal, working at Michigan State University (then Michigan Agricultural College) made the first controlled crosses of corn in an effort to increase yield. Later workers would experiment with inbred varieties, devising a system of “double crossing” to produce large quantities of hybrid seed. In 1935 only one percent of US corn came from hybrid seed. Today virtually all corn grown in the US is hybrid, giving increased yields with reduced manpower. (Heiser, 1981) [See 1716, 1761]
1877 Following up on Louis Pasteur’s studies of yeast fermentation, German physiologist Wilhelm Kühne applied the word “enzyme” to the chemical agent of fermentation. In 1897, Eduard Buchner demonstrated that the extracts from yeast cells would support fermentation. Buchner determined this was due to an enzyme that breaks down sucrose, which he named zymase. (Wikipedia, 2018)
1877 Zeiss manufactured the first production oil immersion lens, which allowed cytologists to explore detail at the very limits of normal light microscopy. The maker specified Canadian balsam diluted with alcohol as the immersion fluid. Author Jim Solladay (https://www.smecc.org/history_of_oil_immersion_lenses.htm) provides a comprehensive history of different kinds of immersion lenses (including water immersion), tracing the concepts back to 1678, when noted: “”…that if you would have a microscope with one single refraction, and consequently capable of the greatest clearness and brightness, spread a little of the fluid to be examined on a glass plate, bring this under one of the globules (lenses), and then move it gently upward till the fluid touches and adheres to the globule”.
1877 Working as a professor at the University of Basel (Switzerland), Wilhelm Pfeffer published Osmotische Untersuchungen: Studien Zur Zellmechanik (Osmotic Investigations: Studies on Cell Mechanics) demonstrates aspects of cellular osmotic process that explain internal cell pressure. The book introduces his device, the “Pfeffer Cell” (a terracotta urn coated with an artificial internal membrane), which was based on Moritz Traube’s creation of artificial membranes using copper ferrocyanide. Using his devise, Pfeffer could calculate that height of water in a column that would counteract movement of water into a his “cell” when it was filled with a concentrated solution. The water column translates into an understanding of water (i.e. osmotic) pressure.(Wayne, 2009) & (Sara Parker, 2017. Osmotic Investigations: Studies on Cell Mechanics (1877) by Wilhelm Pfeffer,” The Embryo Project Encyclopedia, Search Keyword: Pfeffer Cell. https://embryo.asu.edu/pages/osmotic-investigations-studies-cell-mechanics-1877-wilhelm-pfeffer)
1878 Charles Curtis was sent by James Veitch & Sons to Mauritius and Madagascar to collect plants. He sent back Angraecum sesquipedale. (Reinikka, 1972)
1878 Luther Burbank relocated from Massachusetts to Santa Rosa, CA to continue his plant breeding program. (Ewan, 1969)
1878 Of weeping tree forms, Vick’s Monthly Magazine commented: “Drooping trees we do not admire. An occasional specimen as a curiosity, is well, but a lawn abounding in Weeping Trees would be a sorry place.” (Adams, 2004)
1878 Based on a new Hungarian mechanical process, the Washburn experimental flour mill in Minneapolis marked the beginning of modern milling in the US.
1878 John Wesley Powell completed the Report on the Lands of the Arid Region of the United States for the US Department of the Interior. The report predicts widespread irrigation in stating “all the waters of the arid lands will eventually be taken from their natural channels.” The report suggested establishing political boundaries based on watersheds. (McKibben,2008)
1879 Rudolphe Lindt devised conching, a method of improving smoothness and flavor in chocolate. (Coe and Coe,1996)
1879 Capitalizing on Henri Nestlé’s invention of powdered milk, Daniel Peter fabricated the first milk chocolate candy bars. (Coe and Coe, 1996)
1879 Through the effort of E. F. Babcock, the Mississippi Valley Horticulture Society was formed. One of the first achievements of that organization was a national meeting of fruitgrowers, held in St. Louis in 1880. Convergence of these kinds of associations eventually led to founding of The American Horticulture Society. (Mirian Hardin in Slosson, 1951)
1879 The chestnut tree in Cambridge, Massachusetts, under which Longfellow’s village smithy stood, was felled to widen Brattle Street. A chair made from the wood was given to the poet on his 72nd birthday. Subsequent analysis of that chair indicated the tree was really a horse chestnut (a native to Europe,) not at all closely related to the American chestnut most readers would have imagined. (Rupp, 1990)
1879 Eduard Tangle was the first person to describe and report the presence of intercelluar connections now called plasmodesmata. He made the discovery while studying cotyledons and other embryonic tissue of the tropical vine Strychnos nux-vomica. (Morton, 1981, plus WWW sources)
1879 William James Beal initiated the longest running trial in plant science (at Michigan State University), storing 50 seed each of 21 different plant species in bottles of sand, which were buried. Initially one bottle was exhumed (from which the seed were sown) every five years, but the remaining few bottles are on a 20 year cycle. The most recent recovery and planting was in 2000, and the next will be in 2020, leaving four cohorts to carry the trial to the year 2100.(Wikipedia)
1879 Because maize (and pollenta) had become such an important component of certain regional Italian diets (mainly Venice and Lombardy), pellagra became a serious nutritional disease, though the relationship of niacin-deficiency and maize was not clear untion 1937). People suffering from the symptoms were, in Italian, called “pellagrosi.” In response to this worsening situation, on 1 September, Italian agricultural authorities initiated aprogram to: ““study the pellagrosi and the condition of the farming classes” (Monica Ginnaio, 2011. “Pellagra in Late Nineteenth Century Italy: Effects of a Deficiency Disease”, in Population, 2011/3, Vol.66)
1880 Farmers began to cure tobacco using clean hot air rather than the smoky air of charcoal fires, thus producing a milder, more popular form of tobacco. (Simpson, 1989)
1880 In this decade over 25% of sailors in the Japanese Navy developed beriberi – the nutritional disease resulting from insufficient quantities of the vitamin thiamine. An expanded diet corrected the disorder, but not until several years later did C. Eijkman, a Dutch physician working in the East Indies, demonstrate that a diet of brown rice – as opposed to white rice – prevented the disease. Beriberi had become more common because of the introduction of improved polishing techniques that removed the brown outer layers of the rice grain in which thiamine occurs. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996)[See 1886]
1880 For decades, German importers gained increasing control of markets in natural dye sources. BASF (the Baden Dye and Soda Company) had achieved control of indigo, a dye produced principally in India. By 1880, after much work, Adolf von Baeyer and his laboratory successfully synthesized indigo. The strength of this industry quickly galvanized, and in 1890 German exports of dyes accounted for 90% of the world’s supply. In 1914 German companies formed a color cartel, known as I. G. Farben (interessen Gemeinschaft Farben) that soon expanded into the production of fine chemicals and pharmaceuticals. (Cobb & Goldwhite, 1995) [See 1856]
1880 Pharmacographica – A history of the principal drugs of vegetable origin, met with in Great Britain and British India – was published by Friedrich Flückiger and Daniel Hanbury, Their work marks the end of purely natural sources (plant materia medica) for medicines, as the emergence of synthetic organic chemistry increasingly led to synthetic compounds (having essentially begun with synthesis of urea from inorganic materials by Friedrich Wohler, in 1828).
1880 Rev. W. Wilks, of Shirley parish in Surrey, England, marked a poppy in his garden with white edging on the petals. By selecting from among generations of seedlings derived from that original plant, Wilks produced the Shirley strain of poppies, whose orange, pink, and white flowers lack the red and black coloration characteristic of the corn poppy (Papaver rhoeas) from which they were derived. (Grimshaw, 1998)
1880 Lincoln School of Agriculture (Canterbury College, University of New Zealand) opened, establishing itself as the first school of agriculture in Australasia. (Brooking & Pawson, 2011)
1881 H.F.C. Sander established his new 4-acre orchid nursery near St. Albans, England. By 1886 records show that 340 cases of Cattleya were received from South America in February and March alone. “Sander did more to popularize orchids than nearly any other grower of the time, bringing them within financial reach of persons of modest means.” (Reinikka, 1972)
1881 The loganberry was introduced to commerce by James Logan from his garden in Santa Cruz County, CA. (Ewan, 1969)
1881 As early as 1858 Asa Gray had commented on the problem of differing colored grains of corn, the coloration due to pigments in the endosperm. In 1881, prior to scientific understanding of double fertilization, Focke applied the term “xenia” to the obvious effects of pollen on the endosperm. (Zirkle in Ewan, 1969) [See 1899]
1881 John Boyd Dunlop acquired the patent for a hollow tire made of rubber and cloth. From this point, tires became the major use of natural rubber. (Lewington, 1990) [See 1823, 1839, 1877]
1881 Famed bacteriologist and pathologist Robert Koch introduced his “plating” technique for culturing bacterial colonies on nutrient media gelatinized with agar agar. We continue to benefit enormously from this technique, but Koch’sassociation was lost over the years. The curator of his Hygiene Institute, Richard Julis Petri, however fared much better in name recognition through near-universal adoption of the bivalve culture vessel he championed, the Petri dish. (Magner,2002)
1882 Bordeaux University professor Millardet noticed that the copper sulfate spray applied to grapes (to discourage children from eating the fruit from the orchards) deterred downy mildew. By adding lime, which caused the copper to precipitate and stick to the leaves, he invented Bordeaux mixture – one salvation of the French wine industry and an important early fungicide. (Langenheim & Thimann, 1982)
1882 Adalbert Emil Walter Redliffe le Tanneux von St. Paul-Ilaire (known as Baron Walter), Governor of the Usambara District of German East Africa, collected seed and plants of a small herb which were sent to his botanically-inclined father, who forwarded them to Hermann Wendland, Director of the Berlin Royal Botanic Garden. Wendland cultivated the plants and recognized them as representing a new species in a new genus,i.e. Saintpaulia ionantha. In the generic name. Saintpaulia he recognized the father and son; the specific name he assigned means violet (Gr. ion) flower (Gr. anthos). In Germany these plants still bear the common name Usambara veilchen, in English they are called African violets. In their native Usambara cloudforests, the plants are threatened with extinction. (Grimshaw, 1998) [See1925]
1882 Gottlieb Haberlandt first used the term “kranz” to describe the anatomy of bundle sheaths in leaves of Cyperus longus. (Haberlandt G.. 1882. Vergleichende Anatomie des assimilatorischen Gewebesystems der Pflanzen. In N. Pringsheim [ed.], Jahrbücher für Wissenschaftliche Botanik, vol. 13 121-124 Wilhelm Engelmann, Leipzig, Germany. ) Note: In Wikipedia, the date is given as 1904, based on Haberlandt, G. 1904.
Physiologische Pflanzanatomie. Engelmann, Leipzig, in studies of Sugarcane, as cited in the Wikipedia entry on Photosynthesis.
1882Regarding NewZealand’“being transformed into Britain’s farm”(SeedsofEmpire, Chapter 2, The Contours of Transformation, and Chapter 8, Flows of Agricultural Information): “The signal event was the first shipment of refrigerated meat, butter, and cheese to London in 1882.” By 1911, over 20,000 farmers specialized in “fat lamb farming.” The growth of grazing livestock led New Zealand’s conversion of forest, bush, and swamp to pasture. (Brooking & Pawson,2011)
1883 Viscount Itsujin Fukuba built the first greenhouse (9 x 36 ft) in Japan and imported a collection of tropical orchids from England and France. (Reinikka, 1972)
1883 Addis Ababa became the Ethiopian capital. Within twenty years, the surrounding zone, 100 miles in radius, was stripped of trees for charcoal production. (Ponting, 1991)
1883 A. F. W. Schimper coined the term chloroplastids (chloroplastiden), which was contracted the following year by Eduard Strasburger as chloroplasts. The first person to describe them, von Mohl had called these chlorophyllkörnen, i.e. grains of chlorophyll.
1884 As the fallout of a series of conflicts to control coastal areas and the Chincha Islands (where huge deposits of guano could be harvested for sale to Europe for use in agricultural fertilizers), Chile was ceded control of coastal areas in a truce with Bolivia. Hostilities had been initiated by Spain in 1864, generating the shifting accords and alliances that left Bolivia landlocked. (Ponting, 1991). Saltpeter (sodium nitrate) was extracted from guano and used in various industrial chemical processes, from creating fertilizers, to formulating sulfuric and nitric acids, to manufacturing gunpowder. Final sovereignty over the coastal areas was codified in the 1904 Treaty of Peace and Friendship.[See 1843]
1884 An assistant to Sigmund Freud touched purified cocaine to his tongue and discovered a numbing sensation that led to its use as a local anesthetic. Later, a similar chemical compound was produced synthetically, procaine (commonly called by its trade name Novocain), which has replaced cocaine for anesthesis. (Simpson, 1989)
1884 Kate Greenaway, author of children’s books, published her Language of Flowers, one of the more popular dictionaries on this topic.
1884 The new edition of Miller’s Dictionary (OED) included Aeschynomene, the pith hat plant of India. By that time, the pith of this leguminous tree had been used for nearly two decades to construct hats, which were then covered with white cotton cloth and lined with green cloth. Lightweight and durable, the pith helmet achieved icon status. (Lewington, 1990)
1885 Sponsored by the Royal Horticulture Society, the first Orchid Conference was held in England. (Reinikka, 1972)
1885 By 1901, Ludwig Karl Martin Leonhard Albrecht Kossel had isolated, described, and named the five nucleobases in nucleic acids – adenine, cytosine, guanine, thymine, and uracil.
1886 John S. Pemberton created Coca-Cola, a beverage using water (later carbonated water), caramel, kola nut, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, lime, and coca leaf extractions. By 1903 the makers began purging the coca leaf extract of its cocaine component before adding it to the syrup. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996)
1886 The Dutch government began a study of beri-beri, a disease that was devastating the native Indonesian population. Christian Eijkman was assigned the task of studying the “germ” thought responsible. When his laboratory chickens developed symptoms, Eijkman observed that a temporary diet of pure white rice coincided with the disease. Studies led to the culprit – the truncated cone rice mill – which so thoroughly polished the bran from rice as to remove some vital quality [See 1880, 1912], later determined by R. Williams to be thiamine, vitamin B1. (Visser, 1986)
1887 The Hatch Act established a yearly grant to support an agricultural experiment station in each state. (Rasmussen, 1960) Within ten years stations across the country were engaged in basic research. The experiment station system became the basis for the US Agricultural Extension service. [See 1862, 1875, 1906]
1887 John McLaren began his career as Director of Golden Gate Park. When asked one year what he wished for his birthday, it is reported he said: “100,000 pounds of barnyard manure.” Over his career, McLaren not only composted a lot of manure, he also introduced thousands of exotic plants to the landscape and oversaw the real development of this famous landscape. McLaren headed the park for fifty-six years. (Taylor & Butterfield, 2003)
1888 Eduard Strasburger showed that reductive division occurs in both pollen mother cells and embryo sac production. This significant observation was one highlight of more than two decades of productive cellular study, resulting in descriptions of the mitotic process,cell wall formation, and constancy of chromosome number, and led to his conclusion that haploid and diploid phases accompany the morphological changes Hofmeister had described in alternation of generations. (Morton, 1981)
1888 USDA entomologist Charles Valentine Riley guided introduction of the Australian Vedalia Beetle (Rodolia cardinalis) to control a pest threatening California citrus. Earlier, Riley had been instrumental in sending predaceous mites to France for control of grape infestations. For his work, Riley is sometimes called the Father of Biological Control. (USDA ARS Timeline; Wikipedia, 2015)
1888 Louis Carpenter was appointed as professor at Colorado Agricultural College (Colorado State University today), where he organized the first US program in irrigation engineering, the same program in which it is reported Elwood Meade developed and taught the first such class. Carpenter’s papers constitute a special collection in the Colorado State University Library. (Wikipedia, 2016)
1888 Working with extracts from Ricinis communis (Castor Bean), Peter Hermann Stillmark isolated ricin, a very toxic hemagglutin. Soon after, abrin (another hemagglutin) was isolated from Abrus precatorius (Jequirity Bean) Because these proteins were originally extracted from plants, they are also called “phytoagglutinins.” (Sharon Nathan and Halina Lis, 2004. “History of lectins: from hemagglutinins to biological recognition molecules” Glycobiology, 14 (11) 53–62.) [See TL 1954]
1889 Heinrich Gustav Reichenbach died (b. 3 January 1823) in Leipzig, Germany, leaving his orchid herbarium to the Vienna museum with instructions that it should remain closed for 25 years. Because the British had expected his collection to go to either Kew or the British Museum, this action, clearly designed to thwart upcoming British orchid taxonomists, caused an uproar.
1889 Amorphophallus titanum, a gigantic aroid from Sumatra, flowered for the first time in cultivation at Kew.
1889 The Pajaro Valley Evaporation Company of Watsonville, California, began small- scale production of dehydrated onions. In 1950 tins of their product, still usable, were discovered in Skagway, Alaska. (Rosengarten, 1969)
1889 The US Department of Agriculture was elevated to cabinet status. The now Secretary of Agriculture had 488 employees and a $1.1 million budget. By 1912 this Departmenthad 13,858 employees and a $20.4 million budget. (This included reallocation of other departments, such as the weather service, to the new cabinet.) (Rasmussen & Baker, in The Yearbook of Agriculture 1962)
1889 Richard Altmann was the first to use the term “nucleic acid” instead of the earlier term nuclein. (Wikipedia)
1890 Thomas Lipton, while on a journey to Australia, ended his trip in Ceylon, where he purchased four failed coffee plantations (5,500 acres) and began his own tea business, with the slogan: “Direct from the garden to the teapot.” (Hohenegger, 2007)
1890 A St. Louis physician formulated peanut butter as a food for invalids. In 1893 J. H. Kellogg (health food faddist famous for breakfast cereals) made peanut butter for patients with poor teeth. (Heiser, 1981)
1890 Rui Barbosa ordered the burning of Brasilian governmental papers relevant to the slave trade and slavery. This act followed the abolition of slavery in 1888. During over three centuries, approximately 4,000,000 black African slaves were imported to Brasil. By 1870 there were 1,500,000 slaves in that country. (Thomas, 1999)
1890 British military officer Hamilton Bower acquired birchbark manuscripts (related to ayurvedic medicine) taken from the ruins of an ancient Buddhist monastery near the border of Kyrgyzstan and China. The original collection was sold to Oxford’s Bodleian Library. Translations cover many topics, including prohibition against eating garlic as well as methods to skirt the rules: “When a cow has been kept waiting for three nights with almost no grass, one should give her a preparation made of two parts grass to one part garlic stalks. A Brahmin can then partake of her milk, curds, ghee, or even buttermilk, and banish various diseases while maintaining propriety” (Block, 2010 – copied from Dominik Wujastyk, The Roots of Ayurveda – Selections from SanskritWriting)
1890 Hugo de Vries began examining a population of Oenothera lamarckiana near Hilverson. He planted an extensive cohort of Oenothera seed from the wild, which he maintained in cultivation over several generations. Among the progeny, he noted several hundred variants, which botanists would normally call sports. In his publications (1901-1903) describing the variation observed, de Vries noted many curious variants. Darwin would have called them sports, but de Vries decided to apply the term mutants, a Latin term for change. (Mukherjee, 2106)
1890 In his book, Die Elementarorganismen, Richard Altmann described bioblasts, cell components we know today as mitochondria. He understood they existed somewhat independently, even reproducing on their own. Unfortunately, that observation was denied by the next generation of researchers, and decades would pass before their self-sustaining nature became clear. (Die Elementarorganismen und ihre Beziehungen zu den Zellen.Veit, Leipzig) Many authors cite his description of bioblasts from earlier publications, as early as 1886.
1891 Eduard Strasburger (Germany) felled an oak that was 22 m tall, after which he soaked the cut trunk base in picric acid. The acid permeated the entire tree, killing all cells in the trunk, branches, and leaves. Following that treatment, Strasburger filled the vat with water and red dye (eosin) and documented that the red dye still made its way from the base into leaves – even though the tree was completely dead. Results demonstrated the continuity of water in a tree, and the importance of purely-physical structure in movement of water from the base to the top of trees. (King, 2011)
1891 A US forest reserve law established the basis for the National Forest System. The basis for this act was built through professionals (such as Bernard Fernow) who were hired into the new forestry division in the US Department of Agriculture. (Campana, 1999)
1891 Lead arsenate was introduced as an insecticide in the battle against Gypsy Moth (Campana, 1999)
1891 Ravenstein estimated Earth’s carrying capacity at 5.994 billion people based on 73.2 million square kilometers in fertile lands (supporting 80 people per square kilometer), 36 million square kilometers of grasslands (supporting 3.9 people per square kilometer), and
10.9 million square kilometers in desert (supporting 0.4 people per square kilometer.) (Cohen, 1995)
1891 US Department of Agriculture scientist Newton B. Pierce arrived in Anaheim, CA, with the mission to investigate a mysterious disease afflicting wine grapes. The disease was first noticed in 1885, impacting area vineyards (which had been established through formation, in 1857, of the Los Angeles Vineyard Society, a consortium that guaranteed each investor a given acreage planted to grapes.) Damage spread quickly, such that 25,000 acres of vineyards in Southern California had been destroyed by the time Pierce arrived. His conclusions were published the following year as: The California Vine Disease: A Preliminary Report of Investigations, recognizing the disease but providing no conclusions as to the cause. By 1935, the still-mysterious infection was named Pierce’s Disease, but only in 1974 was it determined Pierce’s disease was caused by the bacterium Xylella fastidiosa, which is transmitted by leafhoppers. (Penny, 2017)
1892 Charles Sprague Sargent traveled to Japan to open the Arnold Arboretum’s first Asian mission.
1892 On 28 September, the first Corn Palace in Mitchell, SD opened to the public. Conceived as successor to the series of palaces that had been built in Sioux City, IA (beginning in 1887) the Mitchell building was made permanent in 1921 and is the only extant example of a “palace of the product of the soil.” (Fussell, 1992)
1892 Farmers first became aware that the boll weevil had crossed the Rio Grande River into Texas cotton fields, within a decade threatening destruction of the US cotton industry. USDA investigations were begun in 1894 and a culturally based approach to the problem was proposed by 1897. [See 1906] (Rasmussen, 1960)
1892 The first gasoline powered “tractor” was built by John Froelich of Froelich, Iowa. [See 1903] (Rasmussen, 1960) Froelich built his device by mounting a gasoline engine to a wood and steel frame (of a steam traction engine). Weighingabout 9,000 pounds, his 30 horsepower gasoline traction engine still weighed much less than an equivalent steam device (Schlebecker,1975) The following year theWaterloo Gasoline Traction Engine Co. was founded, based on Froelich’s work. The company did not move directly into production of equipment, but worked for many years on gasoline engines as the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company. Waterloo eventually returned to the manufacture of working tractors, but by that time Hart and Parr [See 1902] had introduced the first commercial, gasoline powered tractor. Waterloo was purchased by Deere and Co. in the 1920’s. (Williams, 1987)
1892 John Burroughs wrote to a Nature Club in Indianapolis, IN:
My Dear Young Friends:
……Do not forget Wordsworth’slines in his Poet’s Epitaph on “a fingering slave, one that would peep and botanize upon his mother’s grave.” I speak in this way because i fear that when you grow older, and the cares of life begin to press upon you, you will feel that you have exhausted nature and that you will give no time to the fields and woods. Keep your love fresh and eager, and remember that to love nature is better than to know her; in other words, your knowledge must first of all have a background of love. Name the birds and flowers, but do not think they are all there in your dead specimen… Hoping your love for nature will never grow dim, I am, John Burroughs” (from Charity Dye, 1903, Letters and Letter Writing as Means to the Study and Practice of English, cited from GoogleBooks)
1892 New Zealand created its Department of Agriculture, which became the Ministry of Agriculture in the 1970s. (Wikipedia, 2017)
1892 John Garton (along with his brother Robert, having formed the firm of J. & R. Garton) introduced a selection of oats named ‘Abundance’ – which we may consider the first large scale introduction of a hybrid crop plant. (Wikipedia, 2018)
1893 Milton Hershey (who manufactured caramel candies) attended the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, where he encountered Lehmann and Co. chocolate machinery in operation. He purchased the demonstration equipment and began manufacturing his own chocolate to coat the caramels. Later Hershey sold the caramel business, purchased a farm in Derry Township, PA, and began his famous chocolate empire. (Coe and Coe, 1996) The characteristic flavor of Hershey chocolates originated with a tendency to caramalize the included milk products.
1893 At the same Chicago World Exposition, Charles Cretor introduced his steam-powered cooker (peanuts, chestnuts, coffee, and popcorn) for purchase, laying the foundation for decades of modifications and improvements that established a commercial market for popped corn. (see company history at https://www.cretors.com/).
1893 Charles Reid Barnes introduced the term “photosynthesis.” (Wikipedia: see Howard Gest, 2002, History of the word photosynthesis and evolution of its definition, Photosynthesis Research, 73(1): 7-10.)
1893 Initial presentation of the Glass Flowers to Harvard University (created under the guidance of Harvard Professor Ware by artists Leopold Blaschka and his son, Rudolph). The glass flowers provided full scale models for teaching about the diversity of plants, but also included examples of important diseases as well as replicas of internal anatomy. (Ewan, 1969)
1893 Reid’s Yellow Dent Corn gained the grand prize as “the world’s most beautiful corn” at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Reid’s corn became a major force in Midwestern agriculture and an important parent to modern hybrids. (Fussell, 1992)
1893 A Supreme Court decision, written by Justice Horace Gray, declared the tomato to be a vegetable, based on common usage of the word “vegetable” as opposed to the word “fruit.” Thus tomato importer, John Nix, was required to pay a 10% vegetable tariff on a shipment of tomato fruit (now honorary vegetables) from the West Indies. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996; see quote from decision on page 88) Botanical Note: A tomato originates as the ovary, in the pistil of a tomato flower. Following pollination and fertilization, the ovary matures into a fruit. One can grow seedless tomatoes by treating the flowers with hormones that promote fruit development without pollination. But whether seedless or not, to a botanist, the tomato is a fruit. Perhaps any part of a plant could be called “vegetable” – but botanists define vegetation as leafy, non-sexually reproductive parts of plants.
1894 New Zealand’s Tongariro National Park Act designated land surrounding and including the three volcanic peaks of the the North Island as the country’s first real national park. Leader of the Ngāti Tūwharetoa people, Te Heuheu Tukino IV, had deeded the peaks to the government for that purpose in 1887. (Pawson & Brooking, 2002) The original gift (the first by indigenous peoples) included 2,640 hectares, establishing the world’s fourth national park. Today, the park includes 7,596 hectares. (New Zealand Department of Conservation website, 2017)
1895 Danish scientist Johannes ‘Eugen’ Warming published his Oecology of Plants (Plantesamfund.) Basing his ecological system on water use and plant growth form, he essentially founded the modern methods of descriptive plant ecology. The terms xerophyte, mesophyte, hydrophyte, monocarpic, and polycarpic date from his usage. (Isely, 1994)
1895 Using light microscopy, Garnier first observed intracellular membranous material he called ergastoplasm. In 1953 [TL], Porter’s studies using electron micrographs detailed membranes as components of the ergastoplasm, which he named endoplasmic reticulum. That study was a follow-up of 1945 observations of a “lacelike reticulum… , possibly the homologue of kinoplasm.” [See TL 1953, Porter…]
1896 Hirase and Ikeno published their discovery of motile sperm in Ginkgo and Cycas. (Bold, Alexopoulos, & Delevoryas, 1980)
1896 The New York Botanical Garden was established, following legislation drafted in 1891.
1896 The standard impatiens (Impatiens walleriana) was introduced from East Africa. Because the plant came from the territory of the Sultan of Zanzibar, it also received the name Impatiens sultani, which is now considered synonymous to I. walleriana. (Grimshaw, 1998) For decades these plants were known by the common names of busy lizzies in some areas and sultanas in others. In North America today they are simply called impatiens. (Grimshaw, 1998)
1897 The US Government passed the Tea Importation Act, which was the first law to regulate food products. (USDA Website, Agricultural Service Timeline)
1897 The USDA section on Seed and Plant Introduction was formed, with David Fairchild as the “Explorer in Charge.” (Camp, Boswell, & Magness, 1957)
1897 Having discovered major improprieties in bourbon production, the U. S. Congress passed the Bottled-in-Bond Act, controlling bourbon production at the source and setting standards for proof and aging. (Fussell, 1992)
1897 As an agricultural explorer out of the Department of Horticulture at South Dakota State College, Niels Ebbesen Hansen collected plants in Russia. In later recollections he noted: “…the camels and other livestock seemed well nourished. The reason was this native grass called ‘Gibniak’ by the native settlers. I brought the first samples to America; infact, I collected it in many other places including west Siberia. In America it is called crested wheat grass. Some believe this grass will ere long cover hundreds of millions of acres of dry prairie regions, in western states from eastern Oregon and Washington eastward through the western half of the Dakotas and south into Kansas.” (M.H. Davidson in Slosson, 1951)
1897 Wilhelm Pfeffer established the term “photosynthesis” – replacing the previously applied phrase “carbon assimilation”. (Krishnamurthy, 2002)
1897 The mail order catalog for Sears Roebuck offered a hypodermic syringe kit, which included two doses of cocaine or morphine at a price of $1.50. (Filan, 2011)
1898 Wheat rust is said to have cost the US $67,000,000. By 1904 significant research programs were established to determine control measures. German scientist H. de Bary had detailed the life cycle of wheat rust, but it was not until 1917 that sufficient study existed to support a barberry eradication program, which was first legalized in North Dakota. (Ewan, 1969)
1898 Gifford Pinchot, Yale graduate and forest manager at Biltmore, was appointed head of the U.S. Division of Forestry. This agency was moved to the Department of Agriculture as the Forest Service in 1905. Pinchot was dismissed by President Taft during a controversy with the Secretary of the Interior over leasing of mineral rights and other issues. Pinchot later became governor of Pennsylvania and subsequently a professor of Forestry at Yale. (A. S. in The Yearbook of Agriculture,1962)
1898 – George Schenck, a German Forester, was hired by George Vanderbilt to replace Gifford Pinchot. With Vanderbilt’s support, by 1 September of that year he had established the Biltmore School of Forestry, the first forestry school in the US. By 1909, Schenck had left his job at Biltmore and the school was dismantled. Much of the forest lands of the extensive Biltmore estate are part of Pisgah National Forest today, where some of the original school structures remain as part of the “cradle” of American forestry. Cornell University’s New York School of Forestry opened just a few weeks later this same year, thus giving that program the distinction as the first professional school of forestry in the US. Unfortunately, New York’s Governor defunded the school in 1903 due to controversies over state forestry practices. A new school of forestry was established through legislative action in 1911, with a conservation mandate. (Wikipedia,2016)
1898 The Bayer Company introduced heroin as a substitute for morphine and codeine. By 1917 this drug was found to be greatly addictive and its use in over-the-counter cough syrups was discontinued. (Levetin & McMahon, 1996) The logic for developing this drug, chemically known as diacetylmorphine, came from the earlier Bayer success at converting salicylic acid to aspirin – which involved replacing hydroxyl groups (-OH) with acetyl groups (CH3CO). Making two such substitutions on morphine yielded a more active/effective compound, thought to be more useful medicinally, and thus termed heroic. (Le Couteur & Burreson, 2003)
1898 Russian botanist, S. G. Navashin, discovered and described triple fusion, a phenomenon common to flowering plants in which the second generative nucleus of the pollen fuses with the polar nucleus (nuclei) of the embryo sac. (Morton, 1981)
1898 Carl Benda named mitochondria in Arch. Anal. Physiol 393-398 (Lars Ernster and Gottfried Schatz, 1981. “Mitochondria: a historical review” J Cell Biol.: 91(3): 227–255. PMCID: PMC2112799; PMID: 7033239 (http://doi.org/10.1083/jcb.91.3.227s
1898 This appears to be the year in which Theodore Hudnut and his son Benjamin first produced and sold corn oil as a commercial product called Mazoil. The mazoil was pressed in mills they modified (for corn) and operated at their Hudnut Hominy Company in Terre Haute,Indiana.
1899 The holdings of Minor Cooper Keith (the American builder of an 1871 Costa Rican railroad and subsequent planter of bananas) were merged with the Boston FruitCompany to form the United Fruit Company. By 1981, half of all world banana exports came to the US. (Heiser, 1981)[see1804]
1899 At his Centerville Plantation (South Carolina) cotton farmer E. L. Rivers successfully isolated a strain of Sea Island cotton that resisted Cotton Wilt and produced quality lint (cotton “fibers”) Working with USDA agent W. A. Orton, Rivers created a seed supply purchased and distributed (as the Rivers strain) by USDA in 1903. Rivers and Orton also developed a second strain called Centerville. (J. O. Ware, Plant Breeding and the Cotton Industry, USDA https://naldc.nal.usda.gov/download/IND43893529/PDF)
1899 Founding of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Beatrice Farrand (wife of the first Director of the Huntington, Max Farrand) was a founding member. (Adams in Punch, 1992)
1899 William Orton was sent to the South Carolina coastal islands by the US Department of Agriculture to investigate cotton wilt, a fungal disease. Orton learned that local grower Elias Rivers had cotton plants resistant to the disease, and had been saving the seed. By 1900 Orton had published the earliest report on the value of selective breeding for crop resistance. (Rasmussen, 1960)
1899 The USDA, State Land Grant Colleges, and other agencies cooperated to begin a national Soil Survey. (Kellogg, in The Yearbook of Agriculture 1962)
1899 Navaschin described double fertilization, explaining the problem of xenia as well as establishing yet another distinction between flowering plants and gymnosperms. ©. Zirkle in Ewan, 1969) [See 1881]
1899 In his book El porvenir de las nations Hispano-Americanas (The Future of the Hispanic-American Nations), Francisco Bulnes represented humankind in three groups,the people of maize , the people of wheat, and the people of rice, promoting the conclusion that “the race of wheat is the only truly progressive one,” and “maize has been the eternal pacifier of America’s indigenous races and the foundation of their refusal to become civilized.” This opinion supported contemporary ideas that devalued the level of Indigenous American peoples. In recent times, Bulnes is regarded as a racist, in the words of historian Daniel Cosio Villegas, “one of the most evasive, designing, and deceitful writers that Mexico has ever produced.” (Cotter, 2003; Wikipedia, 2017 entry onBulnes)
1900 At the brink of the 20th century, world population had reached nearly 1.6 billion. Slavery in the United States, an institution born of cotton, rice, coffee, and sugar production, had been abolished for less than forty years. Women could not yet vote. The continents were conceptually fixed, in static perfection achieved at the creation several thousand years before. Light microscopy was the limit of our ability to resolve cellular structure. Scientists recognized simply two kingdoms of living beings and about 100,000 species of plants. We could list 10 essential plant elements, and remained convinced that oxygen produced during photosynthesis was derived from CO2. American chestnut dominated the mixed mesophytic empire. There were 5 daylily cultivars. And the entire realm of genetics and genomics was about to explode.
1900 In a short period, three scientists, individually, Hugo de Vries, Carl Correns, and Erich von Tschermach published papers that recognized the work of Gregor Mendel . The significance of Mendel’s observations quickly folded into many lines of research, allowing new connections and synthesis.
1900 Botanist Mikhail Tsvet, while studying plant pigments, developed chromatography, utilizing columns of calcium carbonate run with an eluent of petroleum ether and ethanol. (Wikipedia, 2018)
1900 The British owned Pacific Islands Company purchased rights to all minerals on 3-mile-long Ocean Island for £50 a year. Within 80 years 20,000,000 tons of phosphate for agricultural fertilizer (shipped to Australia and New Zealand for crops exported mainly to Britain) were extracted from the island, obliterating the original tropical vegetation and destroying the homeland of the 2,000 native islanders. The same fate befell neighboring Nauru (8.5 sq. miles.) and its original 1,400 inhabitants. (Ponting, 1991)
1900 Joseph Pernet-Ducher (of Lyon) introduced what is thought to be the first yellow hybrid rose, ‘Soleil d’Or’. Making thousands of fruitless crosses, his persistence was rewarded with a single plant that provided the genetic source for yellow coloration in Hybrid Teas and Floribundas. (Grimshaw, 1998) [See 1583]
1901 Mendel’s paper on inheritance in peas was re-published in the RHS journal. [See 1866]
“History celebrates the battlefields whereon we meet our death, but scorns to speak of the plowed fields whereby we thrive. It knows the names of the kings’ bastards but cannot tell us the origin of wheat. This is the way of human folly.”
J. H. Fabre
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