Friday Finds

Have you ever visited a museum to find something related to an ancestor on display? That was my situation quite a few years ago when going thru the Boot Hill Museum in Dodge City, Kansas. In their display, Wheat Comes to Kansas, they had a journal for the Ford County Agricultural Society on display.

This journal was open to notes from a meeting held March 8th and 9th in 1889. Knowing that I had both Crawford and Hammond families living in Ford county at the time, I evidently read the journal entry because I have a handwritten note stating the following:

R. F. Hammond presented an essay ‘The profits of Sorghum for Feed and Syrup, which was very ably rendered by his son, Forest; responses by Crawford, Leidigh, Grantham & Henry

My notes indicate that a newspaper clipping was pasted in the old journal.

The words ‘newspaper clipping’ is a signal to me to search the Ford county Kansas newspapers for this clipping. Thankfully, Kansas newspapers up to 1923 have been digitized and are available on Kansas’ Historical Open Content. I was able to find an article about a Farmers’ Convention in the 21 Feb 1889 issue of the Dodge City Times. While I don’t have a copy of the journal entry, the newspaper article supports my handwritten notes.

Farmers’ Convention

The Ford County Agricultural Association has decided to hold a convention in Dodge City on the 8th and 9th of March, for the purpose of mutual benefit in a practical senses, as is indicated by the programme. It is hoped that farmers and their wives will take hold of the matter in earnest. This can be made a source of profit as well as a source o pleasure. The greatest possible amount of happiness is what we, as farmers, are seeking for, and it will be largely increased if we can learn to do our farm work in a manner that is most certain to bring profitable returns. There are farmers in this county who have made a success of some one or more of the various methods used, or variety and kind of crops planted. In coming together as we have proposed, we can get the benefits of each others experience. We expect Prof. Shelton, of the Agricultural College, to be with us. His experiments for the past thirteen years ought to be worth something to all who hear him. The farmer or farmer’s wife that does not improve by the experience of others will certainly have a hard time solving all the various problems that confront them in this new country.

We expect to spend from ten to fifteen minutes in reading a paper on the various topics, and then spend the remainder of the thirty minutes in a general discussion of the topics read, and the exercise interspersed with music. Begin now to prepare to come and read a paper or take part in the discussions, or both, and we will have a pleasant and profitable meeting.


1 — Wheat raising and corn culture — W. C. Dunker, Wheatland township

2 — Profits of Sorghum for feed and syrup, R. F. Hammond, Fairview township

3 — What to plant tin insure grain for stock feed on the farm — N. Mayrath, Fairview township

4 — Best method for plowing for and the cultivation of the usual farm crops — J. L. Finlay, Royal township

5 — What to plant to insure a living and prepare for a surplus later — C. D. Hand, Concord township

6 — Water supply. How to increase and economize — Capt. Henry, Concord township

7 — Tame grasses — M. Collar, Dodge township

8 — Mistakes in farming — Not yet assigned

9 — Dairy business in connection with agricultural — R. E. Burns, Pleasant Valley township

10 — Profits and importance of poultry on the farm — J. H. Golden

11 — Profits of raising horses and [mules] in connection with agriculture — L. Simms, Dodge City

12 — Potato culture in Ford county — Dr. L. Hibbard, Ford township

13 — Farm economy — Not assigned

14 — Profits of broom corn and method of handling to get ready for market — N. O. Peacock, Grandview township.

15 — Importance of horticulture in Ford County– Frank Vanderslice, Bloom township

16 — Tree culture for early fruit and windbreaks — G V. Bartlett, State forestry station

17 — Why should farmers beautify their homes — Rev. W. J. Elliott Grandview township

18 — Importance of cattle raising in connection with agriculture — Not assigned

19 — Benefits of dehorning cattle — Mr. Mars, Spearville township

20 — Question bureau each day

21 — Butter making — Mrs Petr Imel, Speareville township

22 — Importance of music in farmers homes — Not assigned

Dodge City Times (Dodge City, KS) 21 Feb 1889, page 2