This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
It is a well-known fact that when legislatures undertake special subjects connected with practical affairs they are seldom successes. When they do succeed the success is generally due to some streak of luck scarcely contemplated by the legislative action. Thus it has been with the land grants of the United States made to the States in severalty for the promotion of education in connection with agriculture and the mechanic arts, - while some of these colleges founded or aided under this grant have been marvellously prosperous, the prosperity has been rather by accident, - the great proportion have had no more success than the average of such attempts under any other auspices. It is not to be wondered at that so many have failed, - it is those which have prospered which should excite our surprise. The Pennsylvania College has not been one of the successful ones. On the plea that the geographical centre of the State had a prior claim to location it was placed where no one could get at it or take any interest in it whatever,-hence, not one in a thousand of the most intelligent farmers in the State has ever seen it, nor has a large number of those who lead public opinion in the newspapers and magazines.
Then it was induced, as so many learned institutions are, to get into debt, - and in short it could do little, and this little could not be known, as there was no means to learn about it. Perhaps it might be well even yet to retrace the step and move the institution to some more advantageous spot, making a State Reform School or some other industrial institution out of it. But whether or no, it is a pleasure to note that it is doing and prospering more than it has ever done in its past history. The gentlemen who now compose its faculty are pushing, intelligent men, who have to work under the burden of others' errors, as well as want of means, but they are making the college better known and appreciated than it ever has been, and Pennsylvanians owe them thanks.