History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families Page: 192
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stant and steady increase in the acreage devoted
to the cultivation of cotton. This is
partly due to the abandonment of wheatgrowing
in portions of north Texas heretofore
devoted to the growth of that cereal, and
partly to the opening of new cotton farms in
the southwestern and western parts of the
State, but not entirely. The increase in the
cotton acreage has been much greater than
the increase in population, showing conclusively
the tendency to an expansion of the
cotton acreage to the exclusion of other crops
on farms in cultivation during that period.
The fact that this has been going on in
the face of strenuous efforts on the part of
the agricultural press ana some of the leading
farmers of the country to induce the
farmers to diversify crops and raise more
grain and less cotton, would indicate that the
average farmer thinks he knows best what
crop is suited to our soil and climate and
will yield the greatest return for the capital
and labor invested. It is true there are other
crops that yield a larger average money value
per acre in cultivation, but as a rule they
enjoy only a limited market, and are sure to
entail loss on producers when the demand is
exceeded by production. Sugar cane is about
the only exception to this general rule in this
State, but the heavy expense necessary to the
manufacture of sugar prohibits a rapid development
of the agricultural interests of the
State in that direction. Another very important
consideration in accounting for the
steady increase in the acreage in cotton is the
fact that it is a sure money crop, and can be
realized on at any time, even in markets remote
from the great marts of trade, for its
value at the mills, less the cost of transportation;
but the producer retains but little
money in his hands after payin the cost of
Much time and attention is being devoted
to the discovery of the cause of cotton blight,
or root rot, which damages the crop and entails
considerable loss on farmers every.year.
So far no satisfactory conclusions have been
reached upon the subject. While this subject
offers a wide field for investigation and
research, and one worthy of the best efforts
of the scientists, a more important question
to the cotton-growers of Texas is the discovery
of a cheap and efficient agent for the
destruction of an insect commonly called the
boll worm. The value of a remedy for the
boll worm will be better understood by the
following carefully prepared estimate of losses /
from that source for three years:
Total.......... 1,068,631 $42,836,632
The boll worn destroys cotton in all stages
of growth, from the formation of the buid
and appearance of the bloom to the boll ready
to open, and is equally destructive in its effect
at all times.
In 1890 there was a decrease of 135,655
acres in corn compared with the area of 1889.
This is accounted for by the low prices at
which the crop of that year was marketed.
In many places farmers could find no sale for
their surplus corn at all, and it was left at the
mercy of the weevil, which injures the crop
more or less every year, especially in the
middle and southern portions of the State.
A heavy corn crop is usually followed by a
decrease in the acreage in corn the following
year and a corresponding increase in the acre
IMISORr OP' TEXA8..
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Lewis Publishing Company, publisher. History of Texas, together with a biographical history of Milam, Williamson, Bastrop, Travis, Lee and Burleson counties : containing a concise history of the state, with portraits and biographies of prominent citizens of the above named counties, and personal histories of many of the early settlers and leading families, book, 1893; Chicago. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth29785/m1/197/: accessed April 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .