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within a short distance of the light were blasted and killed. But on the other hand, when the electric light was placed at a reasonable distance from the plants and enclosed in a globe of white "opal" glass, most of the vegetables were stimulated in their growth without any material injury to their quality. Many of the plants would have such an attraction for the arc light that they would incline at an angle of forty-five degrees toward it at night, and straighten up again in the daytime. The effect upon the growth and color of flowers was equally remarkable. The colors of the tulips were made deeper and richer for a few days, and violets were made to blossom in three weeks. Flowers placed too near the arc lights were invariably injured, but if kept at a proper distance no harm followed. The intensified colors, colors, however, faded quicker than those produced by the ordinary methods of growth, and scarlet, dark red, blue and pink flowers invariably turned to a grayish white after being exposed to the sunlight for a few days. The effect of the light on the development of the plants was unquestioned, and the only unsolved problem was: What degree of light could they stand, and how could it best be applied?

While the arc light was being applied to the plants in this country, the French scientists were investigating and experimenting with another system of electroculture. The value of atmospheric electricity to our growing plants has long been recognized, and tests to distribute and collect this electricity in the atmosphere have been made for the ulterior purpose of applying it more directly to field and garden crops. This is Nature's method of stimulating the growth of the plants, and it was thought that better results could be obtained by following her lead than by attempting to introduce the powerful current artificially. It is now announced positively that the French scientists.

have succeeded in utilizing atmospheric electricity for stimulating plant growth. The new invention is called the geomagnetifere, and its object is to collect the electricity from the air and then distribute it evenly among the growing crops. An electrically installed field according to this system is so inexpensive that the farmer can afford to adopt it.

In the centre of the garden a pole forty to fifty feet high is erected, and on the top is placed a chevaux de frise of copper spikes. These copper spikes act as a collector of the electricity in the air, and being insulated from the pole by porcelain knobs and connected with the ground below by insulated copper wires they distribute the electricity among the growing crops. Under the soil of the garden a network of wires is permanently laid. The wires are made of galvanized iron, so that the cost is small, and they are buried to a depth of six feet, so that the electricity does not come into too direct contact with the seeds and plants. They do not interfere with the ordinary cultivation of the field, and yet they stimulate the plants in their growth, so that maturity is hastened and the yield on experimental grounds has been increased. fifty per cent.

Lemstrom obtained his remarkable growth of wheat by exposing the plants to electricity diffused by a network of wires; but later tests seemed to show that as a rule the current generated from a battery was too harsh upon the average garden vegetable. The utilization of the atmospheric electricity, however, solves the problem better than any experiments so far made. The action of the atmospheric electricity is not so powerful as that generated from a dynamo, and it is distributed more evenly over the garden. The development of the plants in a garden thus installed is very uniform and satisfactory. The value of the arc light in forcing houses in the winter season may be of great value for certain varieties of vegeta

bles, and even the dynamo will find its special use in the gardens and fields; but the French method of employing atmospheric electricity for stimulating plant growth appears the most serviceable. The comparative The comparative cost of the two systems is also an important consideration. The expense of installing a field with electricity generated by a dynamo, and the constant outlay of time and money to keep the machine running, make it unprofitable for the average farmer to adopt. The French system, however, is very inexpensive, as well as the most effective in operation.

The model farm of to-day and of the future must avail itself of the most economical systems of plant propagation, and the geomagnetifere must play an important part in its workings. Beneath the rich soil of the gardens where the delicate vegetables are growing, networks of invisible wires are laid, collecting and distributing the atmospheric electricity to all the plants. In the forcing houses similar arrangements are made for stimulating the winter vegetables and flowers for the market, while overhead powerful arc lights make the night as brilliant as day, and help to mature the plant growths in half the regular time required by nature. In the fields of wheat and corn the more powerful currents from a storage house work out similar results, lessening the season of growth and doubling the yield per acre. Excessive droughts and the danger from late and early frosts are thus partly avoided on the electric. farm, while if necessary two crops can be raised in one season where formerly only one could be grown. The electric power that the farmer has at his command enables him to regulate the growth of his plants to suit the seasons or the markets. One portion of the garden can be forced, while the other half is kept back several weeks. There is no limit to the use of the new invisible power which he gathers from the atmosphere around him or generates from the wasted

force of the neighboring stream of water.

This leads to the examination of the source of the new power that propels the machinery on the farm. A small stream of water that formerly flowed across the farms in an irregular course, fertilizing the lower meadows and irrigating the upland districts, has been widened and deepened near its source, forming a large storage reservoir. This artificial pond has been dammed in at its lower end, and as the water tumbles over the open watergates it turns several large turbine wheels. These wheels do not move the machinery of a flour mill, but constantly manufacture electricity for use on the farm. By means of the huge storage reservoir the work of making electricity can go on through the driest season, for the water power never gives out and the electric power is always ready to do its work. From this storage house the motive power is conducted to all parts of the farm. The forcing houses for winter plants are connected with the power house by overhead wires similar to those which disfigure the city streets for trolley lines. The great barn and living house are lighted by electric lights that get their source of energy in the same place. Movable cables radiate from the storage house to every part of the fields, and to these electric motors are attached for performing the various labors assigned to them by the inventive genius of man.

The electric machinery worked by the motors is full of interest. Here are huge plows that turn over six furrows of fresh soil at once, hay-rakes and reapers which perform their duties automatically; electric weedkillers and fertilizers, corn-huskers and shellers, hay-choppers and gigantic threshing and fanning mills. Electric vehicles rush across the extensive fields with loads of grain, hay or vegetables, moving with their broad tires without difficulty over the rough, uneven surface, and behind the plows and harrows the automatic seeders fol

low in close succession, dropping the corn, wheat or other seeds at regular intervals in the freshly turned furrows. Everything is performed by machinery, guided by disciplined hands, and propelled by the new motive power that has caused all the revolution.

An examination of these new farm implements in detail may give one a better idea of their value. As far back as 1892 an electric plow was patented in this country by an inventor in Minnesota, but prior to that time several electric machines had been in practical use in Europe. Threshing machines and hay presses especially had been run by electric motive power in the various European countries; and Congress, taking note of the attempts to introduce electricity on the farms abroad, favored the passage of a bill to provide for experiments with electricity as a motive power for agricultural machinery. This was regarded as the signal for general activity in this direction, and a great number of inventors started in to help solve the problem. The Patent Office at Washington was bombarded with applications for patents on all sorts of electrical farm machinery, many of them being worthy and others almost worthless. An electric plow was soon operated in western Kansas and proved successful.

But it required a cheaper production of electricity to make the new farm machinery of general value to the agricultural community. The electric motors were too expensive, and for a time the inventors waited for further developments. Then came the successful harnessing of Niagara, and the general cheapening of the process of manufacturing electricity and distributing it from a central power house. The trolley cars appeared in the land like mushrooms on a summer's day. Great projects were talked of, and the railroad problem and cheap, clean transportation questions were attacked vigorously by the advocates of the electric lines. One dis

covery after another followed, until all sorts of wild schemes were set afloat, and people talked of harnessing the waves and tides of the ocean and rivers and making even the winds and tornadoes manufacture electricity to turn the wheels and machinery of


Out of all this smoke and flame a great deal of solid, substantial progress emerged, and the world was the richer for the inventions that succeeded, if not wiser for those that failed. The farm machinery was not forgotten in the general scramble to invent new electric cars, new transportation lines, and rapid transit schemes. It is true that a great deal of the electrical agricultural machinery comes to this country via Europe, where, strange to say, more persistent efforts have been made to introduce the new power upon the farms. The rapid transit problem absorbed most of the best talent in this country, leaving often only second-rate inventors to take up the less profitable field of agricultural machinery. While the electric plow has been invented in this country, the most serviceable and practical machine is said to come from Vienna. However, as merits belong to several of the lately invented plows, it may be beyond the province of any writer to say which will prove the successful competitor upon our farms.

There are two general types of these electric plows which will serve to illustrate the general principle of operation in each class. The first type is propelled by a fixed motor. The field selected for plowing is divided into sections of exactly the width of the cable used for pulling the plows. A heavy, powerful electric motor on wheels is stationed at either side of the field, and a strong cable connects them. This cable winds and unwinds upon a spool as the machinery is set in motion. To this cable the plow, which is capable of turning from three to six furrows of soil at once, is firmly attached. When the electric motor on one side of the field is set in mo

tion, it winds up the cable and drags the plow toward it, and when it reaches that side of the field it turns around, and the reverse action of the other motor repeats the operation. The plow moves rapidly across the field, turning the dark, fresh furrows of soil as smoothly as the old hand plow. Each time the trip is made across the field the electric motors are moved an equal distance away from the last furrows.

The second type of electric plow is run by a movable motor attached to the plow itself. The cable is fixed to an anchor on the opposite side of the field, and the electric motor follows this cable, dragging the heavy plow with it. Through a rather elaborate system of machinery, the farmer manages to guide the plow across the field to suit himself, cutting the new furrows in a line as straight as a crow flies. The small cultivators and harrows are propelled in a similar way. They are either attached to the heavy cables, or they run by means of a small electric motor that can be removed from them in a few moments.

In the great barns of the new model farm, huge threshing machines, fanning mills, corn shellers, hay and feed choppers and similar implements are run by the electric current that comes over the wires from the power house. Night and day the threshers hum and sing to a tune more lively than ever before heard on a farm, and as fast as the grain pours out of the screens it is carried to the fanning mills, where the chaff is separated from it. The great hay and grain reapers and binders are propelled by the same invisible power, supplied to them by movable cables or overhead wires. The hay is loaded on the broad-tired, eight-wheel trucks, and carted to the barns to be deposited in the loft by overhead tramways.

Even the weeding is accomplished by electricity. The force that stimulates plant growth and gives motive power to all the machinery can also kill and destroy. Electrocution is ap

plied to the weeds just as successfully as to prisoners in our jails. The delicate current of electricity may give life and vigor to plant life, but a powerful current destroys every germ of life, animal or vegetable. In the spring of the year the new weed destroyer goes over the field and annihilates weeds, insects and larvæ. As the vehicle moves along a series of many wire brushes drags on the earth and kills everything that comes into contact with it. A field overgrown with rank weeds can thus be cleared in a comparatively short time of every noxious growth. Death is just as sure and sudden as if each plant received a lightning stroke from the summer clouds. The weeder goes over the field after a storm, so that the wet stalks will act as more perfect conductors.

There comes from Buda-Pesth the first electric tree destroyer; the farmer who has extensive woodlands to clear finds science ready to help him in this respect. The tree-destroying machines were invented to fell the giant trees in the forests of Galicia. They are comparatively simple in their construction, but veritable giants in their operations. A small motor carried upon a movable truck is drawn up to the noble product of the forest and secured to it by chains and steel clamps. The automatic saw-chisel is next put in position, and when the electric current is turned on it eats its way rapidly into the huge trunk and nearly severs it in two. While the machine is being adjusted to another tree, the first one is easily pulled over by ropes and sawed up by a huge saw operated by another motor.

To complete the picture of the model farm, the owner should travel from one part of the extensive estate to another in his automobile victoria or upon a motor bicycle. Where electricity can be obtained so cheaply, thousands of the newest inventions can be introduced without difficulty. In his spacious living quarters his wife. no longer stews over obstinate wood

or coal fires; she simply turns on the electric current when needed and cooks the dinner without fuss or worry. Electric fans turned by the power that cooks her dinner and lights her house make the atmosphere of the midsummer day delightful and refreshing. There is no longer any triweekly churning to try one's temper, for the near-by creamery converts the cream into butter by the latest and most approved methods. Even the drinking water is pumped up from artesian wells by electricity, and supplied in a cool and refreshing stream to all who ask for it.

The model farm thus electrically installed must naturally be a mammoth affair, for all the improvements and inventions required can only pay for themselves when operated upon a large scale. But a farm ten miles square can be conducted with less labor and less friction by the new method than a hundred-acre one could by the slow systems of past years. Distance has been annihilated on the place by the introduction of the electric motors, and one may ride around his farm before noon and in

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The difficulty of finding streams of water large enough to produce all the electricity needed on such a farm will occur to those living in the great prairie regions; but now that science has found a way to conduct the electric current a long distance, this obstacle is easily overcome. The water power of the Niagara, the Mississippi, the Missouri, the Spokane, the Columbia and many smaller rivers may be employed to manufacture the electricity for agricultural purposes. The current can be conducted through the rich farming regions, and distributed. to all willing to pay for it. The cost to each individual would be much less than half what is now required to run the steam plows, threshing machines, reapers and other heavy farm implements. The money saved on the board of horses would alone pay for the use of the electric power.

From the Journal of Chandler Holbrook, Edited by Herbert Elmer Mills.

HE changes in methods of transportation, travel, communication and conduct of business, which have been part of our century's industrial revolution, have been described and commented upon to a degree almost tiresome; but in spite of all that has been said, perhaps many of us do not fully appreciate these changes, because we have no contact with the life of the past, no adequate comprehension of that which has been supplanted. The mere sight of a

canal boat or an old stagecoach is often more instructive and suggestive than pages of description and statistics. A few pages of Arthur Young illuminate and make real to us much that we are told by economic historians. There has recently fallen into my hands through the kindness of Mr. Henry Booth of Poughkeepsie a manuscript account of a business trip made seventy years ago, that is similarly instructive, because such a graphic picture of the past. It contains many observations upon the state of manufactures, the general economic development of the

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