Establishing state farms expanded agricultural industry
NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - The creation of state farms, such as the West Central Research and Extension Center, played a critical role in expanding agriculture throughout Nebraska. The research center taught local farmers what types of crops and animals would thrive in their region.
“These types of farms were important to the agricultural development of Nebraska,” said Jim Griffin, Curator Director of the Lincoln County Historical Museum.
The University of Nebraska- Lincoln extension was a venture for Western Nebraska. Other facilities appeared throughout the state to handle because of the difference in the climates and crops of their respective regions.
“The research center handled all the experiments that could fail and not ruin your farm,” said Griffin. “That way, farmers could learn the best types of crops to grow and make it profitable.”
The first cattle experiment was dehorning the livestock because they were considered less desirable to packers. After UNL researchers dehorned them, they noticed it slowed the cattle down, but the cattle returned a hire price.
“It would be scary for a rancher to try this, and it fails, which is why the research center was so important,” said Griffin. “There are lots of experimenting at UNL research that goes on today, and it is all because, early on, the university wanted to help the earliest homesteaders thrive and make the entire state thrive.”
Copyright 2022 KNOP. All rights reserved.