The question, What good can result from this Department? is often asked by those who regard it as in some measure in competition with State or National Agricultural Societies. But it is only when it places itself in competition with them that it is seen at a disadvantage. There is an immense amount of useful work to be done which only the power of government can do, and when thus limiting itself it is eminently useful. But this original work requires original minds in those who have charge of the work. With such men as Vasey, Scribner, Riley, Saunders, and some others who might be named, there is no question about the eminent usefulness of the department, and Commissioner Colman is to be congratulated on the success of its administration under these lieutenants. Much has recently been said in regard to the new departments of Forestry and Pomology in contrast with the State societies, but there is no more reason why these should be doing over again work done by them. It was the want of perception of this fact in former years, which produced such indifferent results, and not because there is no need of such divisions.

If the incumbents recently appointed discover their true mission, there is no reason why they may not share the praise accorded to their older co-laborers. Objection is also sometimes made that the department spends money on matters that can have little influence on the progress of agriculture, - no result but to make Congressmen popular with their constituents.

Unfortunately the great mass of the people do not feel interested in these scientific developments that are surely for their ultimate good. These people have a right to some present amusement while the world is going on - will insist on a coating of sugar while swallowing the untasted pill. Numerous grand enterprises are languishing because the popular element is overlooked. The grand success of the Royal Gardens at Kew is due to the genius of a Hooker, who, while aiming to develop the highest type of botanical science, never forgot to cater to the wants of the mass of the people. Kew is popular with peer and peasant. It would soon lose the support of the English Parliament were it not so. Progressive agriculture in America, no more than advanced botany at Kew, may see the utility of some of what is done; but if the result is to get the approval of all the elements that have to pay for their support, it proves the effort to have been wisely made.