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Professor King was the first man to make a study of the weight of ensilage at different depths. His weight tables were first published in 1891 and revised in 1893. Professor King also was the first man to determine the lateral pressure of ensilage, which he found to be eleven pounds per foot of depth. Many of the early King silos were too great in diameter, and many farmers lost considerable ensilage on account of mould.
With the advent of the silo, ensilage cutters and carriers were manufactured for this specific purpose. Feed cutters had long been in use, and these served for cutting the fodder when the first silos were filled. When the silos were above ground, it was necessary to build a platform, pitch the ensilage onto it, and then into the silo. The power used in running the cutters was tread, sweep, or engine. In the tread two horses were commonly used, and four or six horses in the sweep. Henry Lapham, who built a pit silo in 1881 against a steep bank, had rather a novel way of tramping the ensilage at time of filling. He would back a horse into the silo and use it for tramping, not taking it out until it walked out at the top of the bank. The filling usually took a week, for in those days it was considered best to fill slowly, as it was thought sweeter ensilage could thus be obtained. At the time of filling, some farmers added salt or lime, thinking this necessary for the proper preservation of the ensilage.
The building of silos in Wisconsin, like other things, has not been without its freak. The largest silo ever erected in the world was built in 1898 by Arthur McGeoch, of Milwaukee, on his farm at Lake Mills, now owned by C. F. Greenwood, of that place. This silo was sixty-four feet in diameter and sixty feet high. As much as two hundred acres of corn was put into it in one season. It was found to be so impractical that it was used only three seasons for
ensilage. Mr. Greenwood now uses it for straw storage, for which it serves very well.
Wisconsin is one of the few states that take an annual census of the number of silos. The first attempt to take a census was in 1904, when circulars were sent to 1302 assessors. The total number as reported that year was 716; Dodge County, with 87, ranked first. The State Agricultural Department began to take the annual silo census in 1915. In that year there were 55,992 silos. This past year, 1923, Wisconsin had 100,060 silos, which is about 46,000 more than New York, her nearest competitor, which has approximately 54,000. Wisconsin, only two-thirds developed, now has 155,000 farms of over fifty acres each. Thus 65.5 per cent of her farms are equipped with silos, or about two farms out of three. Dane County leads in the number of silos, having 4406, which equip 86 per cent of her farms of over fifty acres. Dodge County is second with 4172 silos. While Dane County leads in the number of silos, Dodge County has more than enough to equip every farm of fifty acres or more, since there are 4014 farms of over fifty acres, in comparison with 4172 silos in the county.
The cost of the early silos varied from forty cents to $2.30 per ton. This variation was due to different types of construction. The cheapest silos were those built in barns, where one side of the barn could be utilized. The more expensive types were of masonry construction. The cost of silos today runs from $4.70 to $11.00 per ton. The cost of filling the early silos, according to detailed accounts kept by some of the farmers, was on the average from fifty to eighty cents per ton. The cost of filling today is about $2.50 per ton.
EARLY WISCONSIN EDITORS
JOHN G. GREGORY
Few whose delight is browsing among the records of early Wisconsin will fail to recall the name of Philo White. A shadowy figure as seen in the blue haze of distance, he was one of the substantial factors in the planting of the commonwealth.
To his initiative is ascribed the founding of the Milwaukee Sentinel. He was concerned in the erection of Milwaukee's first large, modernly equipped hotel. For a time he was the owner and editor of the Racine Advocate, one of the best-written and most influential newspapers in the territory. He exerted himself, not unavailingly, to enlist the federal government in the improvement of Racine harbor. For two terms he was a member of the Territorial Council, and he took part in the proceedings at the first sessions of the Senate after the organization of the state. As a member of the Council's committee on internal improvements, he made a powerful propaganda for the construction of plank roads. In the Senate he helped to lay the foundation of the public educational system, and proved himself a friend of higher learning, not only by his efforts toward the starting of the State University, but by his work with Dr. Roswell Park for the establishment of Racine College. Though not a practical farmer, he aided the progress of agriculture. He owned farms in Racine County, wrote for the State Agricultural Society a noted paper on that county's economic resources, and contributed at the outset toward winning the reputation for leadership in scientific farming which the Badger commonwealth enjoys today. With Nelson Dewey he favored the building up of a citizen soldiery, not for the promotion of militaristic ideals, but for the defense of America and American institu
tions. As an indication of the efficiency with which he discharged responsibilities committed to his care, it may be interesting to recall that when he was at the head of the Second Brigade of the First Division of the Militia of Wisconsin, in 1851, he reported to Governor Dewey for the three regiments constituting that unit a total enrollment of 7716 men, which was equivalent to one out of every six persons in the population. At different times Mr. White held other public offices than those enumerated above. He was a presidential elector for Wisconsin in 1852, and for many years was employed in the diplomatic service of the United States.
Philo White was born June 23, 1796, at Whitestown, New York, which had been founded by his grandfather, a commissary in the Revolutionary War. His careful education began at Whitesboro and was continued in the preparatory department of Montreal College. Later he attended Utica Seminary, but instead of remaining for graduation he entered the office of the Columbian Gazette, of which his former preceptor was one of the publishers. This was a congenial environment, and in it he passed three or four years, acquiring experience, and withdrawing at length with a view to establishing a paper of his own. His first venture, at Manlius, New York, was abandoned because of insufficient support. After a visit to Washington, he went in 1820 to Salisbury, North Carolina, where in company with another young man he began the publication of the Western Carolinian. In 1822 he married the daughter of William Hampton, of that place, and there made his home, purchasing his partner's interest in the Western Carolinian and continuing its publication till 1830.
At an early age Mr. White had participated in military service as a member of the force called out in 1814 for the defense of Sackett's Harbor, remaining actively engaged till the brief campaign in that vicinity came happily to a close. In consideration of this service, he subsequently received a
soldier's land warrant and was placed on the roll of pensioners of the War of 1812. He held various offices in the North Carolina militia, and at one time was nominated for the legislature of that state, but declined. However, while still engaged as editor and publisher, he consented to serve as a justice of the peace, and later as chairman of the "Justices of the Quorum," constituting the county court of pleas and quarter sessions, and for a time was mayor of Salisbury.
In 1830 his health became impaired, and physicians recommended a sea voyage. At this juncture influential friends procured his appointment as United States navy agent, a position whose duties included those of naval storekeeper and purchasing agent for government vessels on the Pacific Ocean. Previously the work had been performed at two stations, Valparaiso, Chili, and Lima, Peru. In his hands it was to be consolidated. He reached his distant field after a voyage by way of Cape Horn, and was absent for four years, establishing a reputation for zeal, integrity, and efficiency that stood to his credit at Washington while the generation of officials cognizant of what he had accomplished remained in control of affairs.
Invigorated physically, he returned to the United States in 1834, and established at Raleigh the North Carolina Standard, which soon acquired wide circulation and commanding influence, procuring for its editor the recognition of the dominant element in the legislature, which elected him state printer. In addition to carrying on his newspaper, he prepared a vast quantity of political literature for circulation throughout the state. Theretofore, North Carolina had stood for the Whigs. The energetic young editor's propaganda became a leading factor in winning it over to the Democrats. In 1836 the vote of the state in the electoral college was cast for Van Buren, and Philo White was chosen to carry the return to Washington.
The trip gave him a vacation which he needed. Once