Kentucky Dept. of Agriculture, Labor and Statistics (1881)


The following report would indicate that this variety of corn is unsuited to our climate. While the test is not entirely satisfactory, yet it is sufficiently so to carry conviction with it of its unfitness, until further experiments demonstrate the contrary:

"Harrodsburg, Dec 8th, 1880.

"Hon. C. E. Bowman, Kentucky State Agricultural Commissioner, Frankfort, Kentucky:

Dear Sir: I had the favor, through you, from Mr. Cornelius Dewees, of Carroll county, of a package of Cuzco Indian corn, with the understanding that I should plant it, and report my success to you.

"I waited until May 1, that the ground might be fairly warm to receive the seed. I selected a strip of good garden soil; had it thoroughly plowed and harrowed. Planted in a single row, a single grain of corn, three feet apart in the row, and threw a shovel of ashes on each hill. Having given away a few grains of the corn to two of our farmers, from whom you will hear, I had but twenty-nine grains left. Of these, eighteen came up and reached the altitude of ten and twelve feet, the stalk being from one to two and a half inches in diameter. Of these stalks, six were barren, nine produced those nameless black abortions seen every year in fields. The others produced an ear each, one having a few scattered grains; the other two were filled about half the length of the cob, the grains chaffy and imperfect. The cobs were about six to eight inches long, and about the size of our white flint hominy corn.

"I think the drought of the latter part of May and early summer may have affected the corn. I think, also, it might have produced better had it been planted in a clump instead of in a single row. As it was, the prevailing west winds may have blown away the pollen, leaving the shoots imperfectly fertilized.

"I hope you will not despair of me as an experimenter, but send me a few more seed of the pure Cuzco, or some of those fine native or acclimated varieties you have been indorsing with premiums.

"I am just making some reports to Mr. Le Duc. Amongst other crops, I report on your father's old stand by for hogs, the artichoke. Your father achieved what few farmers have done, viz: made a fine estate, banking only in mother earth; hence I am given to reviewing his practices so far as I can recall them, and hold his artichoke theory in especial favor.

Yours most truly,

"Mrs. Mgr. Wm. Daviess."