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Kansas State Board of Agriculture
First Biennial Report

Smith County

1878

Map of Smith County - 1878

First settlements: Centre township, by Thomas Lane and Anthony Robertson, both with families, on Section 24, Township 3, Range 14, July 22, 1871; German township, by H. H. Granholz, H. Menshoff, L. Bierman, J. Rider and A. Eldredge, January, 1871; Harvey township, by J. T. Morrison, J. H. Johnston and seven others, in October, 1870; Houston township, by John Rhodes, in October, 1870; Lincoln township, by J. K. Belk and Ambrose Oldaker, October 20, 1870; Oak township, by Thomas Decker, on northwest 1/4 Section 31, and James H. Decker, on southwest 1/4 Section 30, on May 13, 1871; Pawnee township, B. F. Myers was the first permanent settler, some time in 1870. - First church buildings: Centre township, by the Congregational denomination - a subscription furnished the means for building it - it is a stone structure; German township, by the United Brethren in Christ, in February, 1876 - the church is located on the northwest 1/4 Section 6, Township 4, Range 15, on the northeast corner; Houston township, the Methodists are erecting a church at Gaylord; Oak township by the United Brethren in Christ, April, 1877, on the land of James S. Bussinger; Pawnee township, log houses have been erected by both the United Brethren and the Methodists, in 1876. - First school houses: Centre township, a stone house, by district No. 4, on the town site of Smith Centre, in 1873; German township, on the northeast 1/4 of northeast 1/4 Section 31, Township 3, Range 15, August, 1873; Harvey township, by district No. 1, at Cedarville, in 1872, cost $1,700; Houston township, by district No. 9, at Gaylord, in 1872; Lincoln township, by district No. 24, on northeast corner of Section 21, Township 4, Range 11, July 1, 1873; Oak township, by district No. 34, on S. W. 1/4 of S. W. 1/4 Section 35, Township 3, Range 12, in 1873. - First marriages: Centre township, Thos. J. Burrow and Miss R. J. Dunlap, ceremony performed October 16, 1872, by Rev. H. F. Albright; German township, George Boyd and Inez Follon, November 1, 1872; Harvey township, Charles Stewart and Ida Keeler, 1872; Lincoln township, T. J. Tompkins and Flora I. Potter, August 26, 1872; Oak township, John Dillon and Julia Ann Walling, March 10, 1873. - First births: Centre township, son of Christopher Noggels, August 25, 1871; German township, Egbert Rider, February 2, 1872; Harvey township, Ida Chase, September, 1872; Houston township, Maggie D. Fowler, May 21, 1871; Lincoln township, Joseph Stone, September 4, 1871; Oak township, Elmer O. Allen, September 15, 1871. - First business established: Centre township, by W. M. George, hotel and grocery; German township, dry goods and groceries, by Fred. W. Wagner, Germantown; Harvey township, general merchandise, capital stock, $50, April, 1871; Houston township, grocery store, in spring of 1871, by C. P. Newell; Lincoln township, blacksmithing, by J. B. S. Nickel. - First post offices: Centre township, Smith Centre, W. M. George, postmaster; German township, Germantown, January, 1872, Fred. W. Wagner, postmaster; Harvey township, Cedarville, July, 1871, John Johnston, postmaster; Houston township, Gaylord, W. D. Street, postmaster; Lincoln township, Crystal Plains, July 1, 1873, J. B. S. Nickel, postmaster; Oak township, Porter's Ranch, W. H. Porter, postmaster. - Historical incidents: The first social gathering was held at the "dug-out" of George Palmer, in Oak township; the first school was taught by Nancy Canfield, under the supervision of school district No. 23, in the winter of 1873.

The county was organized in 1872.

Population in 1870, 66; in 1875, 3,876; increase in five years, 3,810; population in 1878, 8,315; increase in eight years, 8,249. Rural population, 7,484; city or town population, 831; per cent. of rural to city or town population, 90.

POPULATION of 1878, by Townships and Cities.
TOWNSHIPS AND CITIES. Pop. TOWNSHIPS AND CITIES. Pop. TOWNSHIPS AND CITIES. Pop.
Beaver 628 Cedar 918 Centre 1,211
German 646 Harvey 847 Houston 959
Lincoln 772 Oak 1,102 Pawnee 1,232

Face of the Country. - Bottom land, 15 per cent.; upland, 85 per cent.; forest (Government survey), 2 per cent.; prairie, 98 per cent. Average width of bottoms - Solomon, five miles; general surface of the country, undulating, and in some localities bluffy.

Timber. - The timber is confined to a narrow border along the streams. Varieties: cottonwood, elm, oak, and cedar in small quantities.

Principal Streams. - The Solomon river runs southeast; it has numerous tributaries - Cedar, East Cedar, Beaver and other creeks, flowing south and southeast. Oak creek and tributaries flow southeast. The county is moderately supplied with springs; good well water obtained at a depth varying from 10 to 100 feet.

Coal. - None of any consequence has been discovered.

Building Stone, etc. - Good limestone abounds in the southern and central parts of the county; in the northern part sandstone of an inferior quality is found. There are a few salt springs, but their value has not been tested; there is also gypsum in small quantities, and of good quality.

Railroad Connections. - No railroads have been built in the county.

Agricultural Statistics. - Acres in the county, 576,000; taxable acres, 82,741; under cultivation, 65,161; cultivated to taxable acres, 79.96 per cent.; increase of cultivated acres during the year, 14,867.50.

A BIG YIELD. - Statement by F. D. Morse, Smith Centre:

Corn. - James Frazier planted 120 acres in Township 3, Range 15, with Yellow Dent corn. It was put in the 1st of May, and was harvested in August and September, and was grown on bottom and upland, there being about equal parts of each in the field. The crop was ploughed three times with a cultivator, and averaged 98 bushels to the acre, at a cost of about $7.50.

Value of Garden Produce, Poultry and Eggs Sold during the Year. - Garden produce, $949.80; poultry and eggs, $3,283.17.

Old Corn on Hand. - Old corn on hand March 1, 1878, 222,516 bushels, or an average of 134 bushels to each family.

Dairy Products. - Cheese manufactured in 1875, 516 lbs.; in 1878, 1,950 lbs.; increase, 1,434 lbs. Butter manufactured in 1875, 55,107 lbs.; in 1878, 155,936 lbs.; increase, 100,829 lbs.

Farm Animals. - Number of horses, in 1877, 2,473 in 1878, 3,452; increase, 979. Mules and asses, in 1877, 312; in 1878, 440; increase, 128. Milch cows, in 1877, 2,184; in 1878, 2,649; increase, 465. Other cattle, in 1877, 3,858; in 1878, 4,272; increase, 414. Sheep, in 1877, 2,630; in 1878, 3,307; increase, 677. Swine, in 1877, 7,789; in 1878, 14,078; increase, 6,289.

STATEMENT showing the Acreage of Field Crops named from 1872 to 1878, inclusive.

CROPS. 1872. 1873. 1874. 1875. 1876. 1877. 1878.
Winter Wheat 259.00 259.00 52.00 236.00 743.00 3,359.00 5,132.00
Rye 16.00 16.00 59.00 525.25 3,100.00 3,133.00 2,932.00
Spring Wheat 110.00 586.00 5,029.00 9,842.25 11,868.00 10,994.00 24,373.00
Corn 2,838.00 7,173.00 15,231.00 14,468.50 19,052.00 25,816.00 24,521.00
Barley ----- 17.00 121.00 540.25 1,319.00 1,139.00 1,169.00
Oats 49.00 398.00 1,503.00 1,913.95 2,070.00 1,797.00 2,141.00
Buckwheat ----- 4.00 ----- 2.37 32.00 17.00 11.00
Irish Potatoes 23.00 99.00 351.00 229.54 530.50 582.00 665.00
Sweet Potatoes ----- ----- 3.00 0.87 2.00 3.00 7.50
Sorghum 22.00 78.00 226.00 237.68 307.00 377.00 340.25
Castor Beans ----- ----- 7.00 8.25 2.75 25.00 0.25
Cotton ----- ----- 1.00 5.50 ----- 1.50 -----
Flax ----- ----- ----- 44.62 45.00 4.50 14.00
Hemp ----- ----- ----- 0.50 ----- 0.50 ------
Tobacco ----- ----- 3.00 5.50 3.00 12.00 10.00
Broom Corn ----- ----- 7.00 6.34 76.00 117.00 227.00
Millet and Hungarian 4.00 35.00 264.00 297.75 1,464.00 2,470.00 1,718.00
Timothy Meadow ----- 2.00 4.00 16.50 ----- 6.00 -----
Clover Meadow ----- 1.00 ----- 0.50 ----- 0.50 -----
Prairie Meadow 1,872.00 1,872.00 796.00 1,775.00 3.00 ----- -----
Timothy Pasture ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- 0.50 -----
Clover Pasture ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Blue-Grass Pasture 1.00 1.00 ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Prairie Pasture 116.00 116.00 114.00 1,439.00 586.00 439.00 1,900.00








Total 5,310.00 10,657.00 23,771.00 31,596.12 41,203.25 50,293.50 65,161.00

Increase in six years, 1,127 + per cent.
Average increase per annum, 187.83 + per cent.

RANK of Smith County in the Crops named below as to Acreage, and in Cultivated Acreage for the years mentioned in the forgoing table.

CROPS. 1872. 1873. 1874. 1875. 1876. 1877. 1878.








Wheat 53 53 51 28 29 28 23
Corn 56 48 43 48 41 47 47
Total Acreage in all Crops 55 54 50 53 51 50 48








STATEMENT showing the Acres, Product and Value of Principal Crops for 1878, together with the Increase and Decrease as compared with 1877.

CROPS. ACRES IN
1878.
INCREASE
OR
DECREASE
FROM 1877.
PRODUCT
IN 1878.
INCREASE
OR
DECREASE
FROM 1877.
VALUE OF
PRODUCT
IN 1878.
INCREASE
OR
DECREASE
FROM 1877.







Winter Wheat - bu. 5,132.00 1,773.00 in. 102,640.00 35,460.00 in. $41,056.00 $2,611.00 de.
Rye - bu. 2,932.00 201.00 de. 58,640.00 16,552.00 de. 17,592.00 4,965.60 de.
Spring Wheat - bu. 24,373.00 13,379.00 in. 389,968.00 192,076.00 in. 136,488.80 17,753.60 in.
Corn - bu. 24,521.00 1,295.00 de. 980,840.00 51,800.00 de. 176,551.20 31,981.60 in.
Barley - bu. 1,169.00 30.00 in. 29,225.00 389.00 de. 10,228.75 2,232.97 in.
Oats - bu. 2,141.00 344.00 in. 74,935.00 539.00 de. 11,240.25 80.85 de.
Buckwheat - bu. 11.00 6.00 de. 154.00 50.00 de. 123.20 40.00 de.
Irish Potatoes - bu. 665.00 83.00 in. 66,500.00 31,580.00 in. 16,625.00 835.00 de.
Sweet Potatoes - bu. 7.50 4.50 in. 712.50 412.50 in. 356.25 86.25 in.
Sorghum - gall. 340.25 36.75 de. 39,128.75 4,226.25 de. 19,564.38 2,113.12 de.
Castor Beans - bu. 0.25 24.75 de. 2.25 247.75 de. 2.71 247.29 de.
Cotton - lbs. ----- 1.50 de. ----- 255.00 de. ----- 25.50 de.
Flax - bu. 14.00 9.50 in. 168.00 127.50 in. 168.00 125.47 in.
Hemp - lbs. ----- 0.50 de. ----- 460.00 de. ----- 27.60 de.
Tobacco - lbs. 10.00 2.00 de. 7,400.00 1,480.00 de. 740.00 148.00 de.
Broom Corn - lbs. 227.00 110.00 in. 175,925.00 82,325.00 in. 6,597.19 3,087.19 in.
Millet and Hungarian - tons 1,718.00 752.00 de. 5,154.00 1,021.00 de. 18,039.00 3,573.50 de.
Timothy Meadow - tons ----- 6.00 de. ----- 8.40 de. ----- 37.80 de.
Clover Meadow - tons ----- 0.50 de. ----- 0.75 de. ----- 3.38 de.
Prairie Meadow - tons ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Timothy Pasture acres ----- 0.50 de. ----- ----- ----- -----
Clover Pasture - acres ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Blue-Grass Pasture - acres ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- -----
Prairie Pasture - acres 1,900.00 1,461.00 in. ----- ----- ----- -----







Total 65,161.00 14,867.50 in. ----- ----- $455,372.73 40,558.44 in.

Sheep Killed by Dogs. - Number of sheep killed by dogs, 42; value of sheep killed by dogs, $126.

Wool. - Clip of 1877, 6,266 pounds.

Value of Animals Slaughtered. - Value of animals slaughtered and sold for slaughter during the year, $43,497.09.

Horticulture. - Number of acres nurseries, 1. Number of trees in bearing: apple, 127; pear, 1; peach, 7,240; plum, 342; cherry, 141. Number of trees not in bearing: apple, 5,024; pear, 138; peach, 32,303; plum, 4,677; cherry, 765.

Herd Law. - The herd law in operation since 1872 throughout the county. A correspondent writes: "It is conceded to be of benefit to the poorer classes, but considerable opposition exists among stock men. It is believed to be a good thing."

Fences. - Stone, 130 rods; cost, $260. Rail, 6,487 rods; cost, $10,054.85. Board, 2,609 rods; cost, $3,887.41. Wire, 5,721 rods; cost, $4,462.38. Hedge, 6,356 rods; cost, $4,449.20. Total rods of fence, 21,303; total cost, $23,113.84.

Apiaculture. - Bees, none reported.

Value of agricultural Implements. - Amount invested in agricultural implements, $51,381.

Manufactures. - Houston township: steam saw mill, capital, $2,000; water flouring mill, capital, $3,000; wagon factory, capital, $500; cheese factory, capital, $500.

Valuation and Indebtedness. - Assessed valuation of personal property, $249,637.97; total assessed valuation of all property, $477,458.97; true valuation of all property, $795,764.95. Total indebtedness of county, township, city and school districts, $18,613.65; per cent. of indebtedness to assessed valuation, .04-.

Newspaper History. - The Smith County Pioneer, Republican, was started at Cedarville, in November, 1872, by Dr. W. D. Jenkins. It was sold to the Cedarville Town Company, in 1873, and was edited successively by Dr. W. D. Jenkins, Lew. Plummer and Mark J. Kelley. In the fall of the same year, the office was sold to Levi Morrill, who removed it to Smith Centre, and continued to publish the Pioneer at that place until October 20, 1874, when it was sold to Will. D. Jenkins, Jr., who has continued its publication to the present time. July 20, 1878, the paper was enlarged, and its name changed to the Kansas Pioneer.

Schools. - Number of organized districts, 97; school population, 2,864; average salary of teachers, per month, males, $20.38; females, $16.71. School houses built during 1878, 2; frame, 1; brick, 1. Total number of school houses, 41; log, 31; frame, 2; brick, 1; stone, 7. Value of all school property, $9,696. Very little, as yet, has been done toward ornamenting school grounds.

Churches. - Baptist: organizations, 4; membership, 187. Congregational: organizations, 6; membership, 118; church edifices, 1; value of church property, $2,500. Methodist Episcopal: organizations, 18; membership, 340. Presbyterian: organization, 4; membership, 65. Roman Catholic: organizations, 1; membership, 100; church edifices, 1; value of church property, $500.

Transcribed from First Biennial Report of the State Board of Agriculture to the Legislature of the State of Kansas, for the Years 1877-8 embracing statistical exhibits, with diagrams of the agricultural, industrial, mercantile, and other interests of the state, together with a colored outline map of the state, and sectional maps, in colors, of each organized county, showing their relative size and location, railroads, towns, post offices, school houses, water powers, etc., etc. Topeka, Kansas: Kansas State Board of Agriculture. Rand, McNally & Co., Printers and Engravers, Chicago. 1878. Transcribed by STUDENT, DATE.


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