American agriculture would not be the driving force it is today without the commitment to education of visionaries more than a century ago.
Numerous celebrations of the nation’s Cooperative Extension service were celebrated in America’s most productive agricultural state – California – on May 8 (the anniversary of the passage of the Smith-Lever Act), including one at a community garden in Fresno. The event included local farm advisors sharing the important role agricultural research plays in helping commercial growers and homeowners alike.
Local schools and dignitaries visited Fresno’s Garden of the Sun for a day of scientific education, discovery and a chance to talk with farm advisors, master gardeners, nutrition staff and others about the importance of agricultural education and research.
Exhibits showcased local programs, including University of California Research and Experiment Stations such as the ones at Kearney and the West Side RES, 4-H programs, master gardener activities and nutrition education.
The Citrus Experiment Station at UC Riverside was one of the first Ag experiment stations established in California after passage of the Hatch Act 25 years after President Lincoln signed the Morrill Act into law. The other experiment station was located in Davis, Calif.
The marker here reads: “The University of California established the Citrus Experiment Station in Riverside in 1906 and moved it into the central and south buildings of this mission revival style group in 1918, initiating the present campus. Here Herbert John Webber, Leon D. Batchelor, Alfred M. Boyce, E.T. Bartholomew, Homer Champan, Howard S. Fawcett, Howard B. Frost, Walter P, Kelley, Leo J. Klotz, James W. Lesley, H.J. Quayle, Harry Smith and other researchers made discoveries advancing agriculture in California and the world.”