Live Stock.Kansas was settled by tillers of the soil, who brought their little flocks and herds with them from the older states, and from the organization of the territory more or less attention has been given to stock raising. In the early days little thought was given to the improvement of the breeds, quality was sacrificed to quantity, the broad-horned Texas cattle being the principal species raised for market. In March, 1881, a writer in the Kansas Monthly, published at Lawrence, called attention to the advantages of Kansas as a stock-raising state as follows: "The State of Kansas has made satisfactory showing in all classes of live stock, but more particularly in cattle, sheep and swine." Then, after enumerating the advantages of climate, grazing ranges, etc., adds: "The local stock market here is so much better than Eastern people suppose, that it is well to mention it as a strong stimulus to business. Right here at the gateway to Kansas is Kansas City, already the second cattle and hog mart of the Great West. It has extensive stock yards, a magnificent stock exchange, and half a hundred stock commission merchants, whose representatives visit every stock ranch in Kansas, and pay full, round figures too, so near to Chicago prices that only the heavy dealers can afford to ship to that market."
There is little question that the establishment of the stock yards at Kansas City had much to do with stimulating the live stock industry in Kansas. At the time the above was written Kansas had been a state for twenty years. In 1880, the year before it was written, the value of live stock, including horses, mules, cattle, sheep and swine, in the state was $61,563,956. Ten years later it had increased to $113,533,342; in 1900 it was $143,457,753, and in 1910 it was $242,907,611, an increase of nearly 400 per cent. in thirty years. Not only did the live stock of the state thus increase in value; it also improved in quality. The old "scrub" stock of the pioneer and the range cattle of the early ranchman gave way to better breeds, so that the value per head of animals increased during this period in even greater proportions than they did in numbers, when compared to the market prices at different dates.
The state has encouraged stock raising by favorable legislation. In 1884 Gov. Glick called a special session of the legislature to provide for some means of protection against the "foot and mouth disease." At that special session laws were passed providing for the establishment of a live stock sanitary commission, the appointment of a state veterinarian, and a quarantine against Texas cattle. (See Glick's Administration.) A long act of 33 sections relating to live stock was approved by Gov. Hoch on March 4, 1905. This act authorized the appointment by the governor of a live stock commissionersome one who had been actively engaged for not less than ten years in breeding and handling cattlewhose duty it should be to protect the health of domestic animals from contagious and infectious diseases by the establishment and maintenance of quarantines, and the killing of diseased animals when necessary to prevent the spread of the disease. The act authorized the commissioner to establish a patrol along the southern boundary of the state to supervise the movement of cattle, and to inspect all cattle before permitting them to cross the state line. A penalty of $50 to $1,000 fine, with imprisonment in a county jail for not less than thirty days nor more than one year, was provided for those bringing diseased cattle into the state.
In 1909 the legislature passed an act providing that city authorities might require dairymen to subject their milch cows to a test for tuberculosis, and that milk offered for sale might be subjected to the tuberculin test under the direction of the live stock sanitary commissioner. This power has been exercised in nearly all of the principal cities of the state, with the result that dairymen have usually selected their cows with great care, and this has indirectly been the means of improving the grade of dairy stock. The same legislature (1909) appropriated $7,500 as a revolving fund in the Agricultural College to buy stock, feed and experiment in breeding, etc. The fund is called "revolving," because the college authorities are directed to turn all proceeds from the sale of stock back into the fund, thus making it perpetual. Through the operation of this law it is expected that, within a few years, the farmers and stock raisers of the state will derive much useful and scientific information regarding the breeding, care and feeding of domestic animals.
As the stock raisers of the state began to realize the advantages to be gained from improved breeds of animals breeders' and growers' associations were formed for the interchange of ideas. A great impetus was given to this line of procedure in the fall of 1897. On Nov. 16 of that year the Colorado Cattle Growers' association and the Denver Chamber of Commerce issued a call for a convention of stock raisers in that city on Jan. 25-27, 1898. Kansas sent 13 delegates to that convention, viz.: G. W. Melville, B. J. Ladd, Taylor Riddle, Joseph G. McCoy, George M. Kellam, J. W. Johnson, J. D. Robertson, Frank Weinshank, F. A. Lane, W. R. and C. H. Nunemacher, I. L. Dresin, all practical stock men. At the Denver convention the National Live Stock association was organized as a permanent institution, its membership being made up of delegates from local and state associations. In 1905 there were nine such associations in Kansas, to-wit: The Improved Stock Breeders' association of Topeka; the Live Stock association of Cottonwood Falls; the State Live Stock association of Emporia; the State Cattlemen's association of Abilene; the Stock Growers' association of Ashland; the Hodgeman County Cattle Growers' association of Jetmore; the Southern Kansas and Oklahoma Breeders' association of Caldwell; the Southwest Kansas Cattle Growers' association of Dodge City; and the Horse Breeders' association of Topeka. All these organizations are working systematically for the advancement of the live stock interests of the state, and visitors to the state fairs of Kansas in recent years can bear testimony as to the success of their efforts.
A CATTLE RANCH NEAR OBERLIN.
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