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the schedules before they come in to Washington. That is on the agricultural census. Now, I do not believe that is provided for in the proposal that has been submitted.
Mr. MOORMAN. If you will permit me, I would like to have the opinion of the Census Bureau on that suggestion. What would you say about that?
Mr. GOSNELL. The township tabulation?
Mr. OLSEN. The question of supervisors by counties or smaller units.
Mr. GOSNELL. We made a rough estimate of that. It would be about $750,000 or $1,000,000; that is, to provide for å supervisor for each county, and an average of approximately 20 days.
Mrs. Kahn. Do you think that would be absolutely necessary? Mr. GOSNELL. We have not found it necessary in the past. Mrs. Kann. Would the addition of the census of distribution make it necessary?
Mr. GOSNELL. No, that would not make it necessary. Of course, that provides for additional supervisors in the large cities, but not in the counties or rural sections.
Mr. MOORMAN. Now, in order to get a true picture of the rural sections, and I have every confidence in the gentleman's judgment and purposes, I would like to ask him, if it would not embarrass him to say it, whether or not he feels that this would be justified-the appointment of these supervisors—and why not, if they do it in the cities, and if they are necessary there to get a proper check, why would not they give a truer picture in the country just as well, and be justified there just as well?
Mr. GOSNELL. In the first place, in the cities there would be 3,000 or more distributors, and naturally the supervisors would be given uniform instructions of the schedule, whereas in the rural sections we plan to have one of our representatives visit or talk to each of the supervisors and explain the schedules of agriculture. The county has, es a rule, an average of from 3 to 15 distributors in any agricultura: district. Local people are appointed in each district, and we feel that they are fairly competent to handle the work without county supervision. However, I do feel that there should be some supervision from the central office to provide some kind of check.
Mr. MOORMAN. Does the gentleman feel that the average enumerator in any county, say in Kentucky or elsewhere, would know enough about the market situation, and things of that sort, and will take enough trouble, when he gets just as much money for doing it otherwise, as he would if he had a special man to look into the distribution feature in the interest of the farmers, as well as in the interest of the merchant?
Mr. GOSNELL. Yes, I think he would. Of course, the distribution schedule for the rural sections would be very limited. It would only cover a limited number of small stores.
Mr. MOORMAN. Is it not contemplated that this distribution feature should cover any more than that, with relation to the farmers?
Mr. GOSNELL. What we have contemplated so far is the distribution of farm products after they leave the farm.
The CHAIRMAN. You get it from the production? Mr. GOSNELL. Yes, but we did not plan to get the schedule from each farmer which would show the sale of his products, either direct to the consumer or to the wholesaler or retailer. We have the production already. But a census of that kind would be particularly difficult to take and very expensive, and I doubt if it would be very valuable after you got it.
Mr. MOORMAN. That is your opinion?
Mr. GOSNELL. Yes, that is my opinion; but we could pick up commodities that are sold to wholesalers and show the amount sold—that is, the quantity-and the amount in dollars, of farm products. I think that would be extremely valuable.
Mr. THURSTON. Mr. Chairman, at the conclusion of the evidence here offered by the gentleman from the department, I would like to submit a letter from the American Farm Bureau Federation directed to me, which deals with the question of the time of taking the census of agriculture.
The CHAIRMAN. Just in brief, Mr. Thurston, what date do they suggest?
Mr. THURSTON. In section 5 of this letter they suggest that the census of agriculture be taken as of December 1 instead of November 1. I submit this without any recommendation, but just as being the views of the legislative agent of the Farm Bureau Federation, at the conclusion of the hearing.
The CHAIRMAN. It will be received in the record.
(The letter referred to will be found at the conclusion of to-day's hearing.)
Mr. OLSEN. Now, just a concluding word. We feel that the taking of the census late in the fall or around January 1 is better than April 1, because the farmers are nearer to the facts and we will get better data on acreages and on production; we will avoid some of the real difficulties that arise in connection with a livestock census. We are not asking the farmer to report these facts at a time when he is as busy as he is in the spring, particularly if the census is taken January 1. We will avoid a great many complications that are going to arise in the movement of population from farm to farm. Furthermore, by changing the date in the taking of the agricultural census, we are going to destroy that comparability in the censuses which we have found so valuable. We think it would be a backward step.
Now, a word in regard to the world agricultural census that was mentioned the other day by one of you gentlemen. The International Institute of Agriculture, † think, back in 1924 or 1925, decided that they would sponsor the world census of agriculture, thinking that it was absolutely important that every country should know what is the situation in other countries, whether they are competing countries or countries providing a market for their products. As a result of that, they appointed a director general, who has been busy in the last several years visiting some of the more important countries of the world, and I understand that practically all of them have agreed to take this census. The committee in discussing the question of the date, differed, as all committees will; but the thought was expressed in connection with a good many items, particularly livestock, that it would be desirable to have that taken around January 1. I am citing that to show how important the World Census Committee considered the date for taking an agricultural census. I realize that from the point of view of population, April 1 might be a more desirable date, and that is to be taken into account by the committee. On the other hand, we feel so strongly as to the importance of an accurate
agricultural census that if it is necessary to take two censuses, even at additional cost, taking the agricultural census and then taking the population census, that it would be worth while, because of the value of that document which would be secured and which underlies so much of our activities. I think it has been estimated that it might cost from $1,500,000 to $2,000,000 or more to take those two censuses separately.
The CHAIRMAN. Did you include in your figures as to the cost, anything in relation to the separate censuses, that is, of agriculture and of population, taken on separate dates? Mr. GOSNELL. No; I did not, Mr. Chairman. The CHAIRMAN. You took them, as is? Mr. GOSNELL. Yes; as one census. The CHAIRMAN. What would be the additional cost? Mr. GOSNELL. Approximately $2,000,000. The CHAIRMAN. Well, that is about the figure he' mentioned. Mr. DE ROUEN. Would this include the census of the insular possessions, or is that considered in there? Do you include that in there?
Mr. GOSNELL. That is included in the estimates, with the exception of the Philippines. Mr. DE ROUEN. Well, they take their own census, I believe.
The CHAIRMAN. In regard to the Philippines, the practice has been that that census is taken by the Philippine government. That is the government set up by itself, of course, under the surveillance of this Government, but they have taken their own census.
Gover. GOSNELIAN. They manillest inform
The CHAIRMAN. They manage the whole thing. I am a little in doubt, without having the fullest information, as to how we would conflict if we got into that field.
Mr. DE ROUEN. Of course, somebody might say, “Well, the Census did not do right," or "Some department did not do right.”
The CHAIRMAN. Well, somebody is always finding fault with what is going on. Proceed, Mr. Olsen, with your statement.
Mr. OLSEN. I want to make clear to the committee that the Department of Agriculture takes this position, and conscientiously believes that the census can be better taken December 1 or January 1, and we have appeared before your committee at such length because we have found this agricultural census of such tremendous importance to the work that our department is doing. Furthermore, I think the whole industry of agriculture has a right to be profoundly interested in that document, because it is certainly the most outstanding single document for agriculture.
The CHAIRMAN. Do you think that if the census of agriculture was taken in the winter months it could be taken throughout the country just as well as if the season were open, the weather clear, and the roads good?
Mr. OLSEN. I realize that some difficulty would be encountered in getting around in the winter months.
The CHAIRMAN. Of course, we are in the Temperate Zone, but there are vast areas of the United States in the cold region. I am not familiar with the Northwest, but I know in Kentucky they have severe winters at times. The northwest corner of my State is blocked with snow now, with all its disadvantages, although we have excel
lent roads and there is no difficulty getting in there, but I was won. dering if in the great Northwest, in Minnesota, Wisconsin, northern Michigan and northern Illinois and those States, we could get as satisfactory a census in the winter months from the farmers—I am speaking of the agricultural census—as we could at a time of the year when the roads were open, and the atmosphere clearer, and the whole weather conditions more favorable for the enumerators to get about. I think that is a matter for consideration in executive session. However, I would like your opinion on that, if you have weighed that difficulty, as to the season, the seasonal difficulty, I might call it. I might ask you, are you from the mountain region of Kentucky, Mr. Moorman?
Mr. MOORMAN. No; not from the mountain region, but I am from a county that until this year did not have but 10 miles of hard road in it; there are 1,200 miles of mud road in the county. When I went home from here when Congress adjourned about December 20, I believe it was, you could not get around at all on account of the roads, and it would have been absolutely impossible to have taken a proper census. Furthermore, the weather was so cold, I went out to my farm, which is a mile and a half from the city, and I could hardly get out there and back, it was so disagreeable. I do not see how any men on earth could take a census under such conditions. That is half way between the time that the gentleman suggests, between December 1 and January 1.
The CHAIRMAN. That condition prevails to a considerable extent in Kentucky, Tennessee, and other States? Mr. MOORMAN. Yes, sir.
The CHAIRMAN. You have snow there? Mr. MOORMAN. Yes, sir. There was the worst sleet storm that I have ever seen and the weather was very cold.
The CHAIRMAN. Years ago I read a book by a distinguished citizen of Louisville, the elder HallmanMr. MOORMAN. I knew him very well.
The CHAIRMAN. And it led me to make a journey to several places where he went. He went down the southwest coast of Florida, away down 200 miles below Tampa, away down there where the coconuts grow, where it is warm; and the reason that he gives in this book that he wrote is that because of the rigors of the Kentucky climate he wanted a warm place to go in the winter; and he was from Louisville. Now, I wonder if you have given thorough consideration to that element?
Mr. OLSEN. That factor has entered into our thought on the subject, and we realize that in many sections you would run into difficulties in taking a census late in the fall.
The CHAIRMAN. Your idea is to take in it midwinter? Mr. OLSEN. Well, it will be December 1 or January 1. The census people can speak better on that subject than I can.
Mr. De Rouen Suppose it is taken at a later date, say in March or April; WOW
ay durt your present system that you are carrying in Mr. OLSEN
TO Tecidedly. Mr. DE PO
her important to you? Mr. OLSEN
mportant; it will upset the work. Mr. DER
Mr. MOORMAN. The truth about the matter is that it is the statistical trouble that it is going to cause you trouble; that is the chief objection?
Mr. OLSEN. The idea of the document is to get a correct statistical picture of agriculture. That is what you want the document for, whether it is for our purposes or for the agricultural industry generally, and the more accurate it is, the more valuable it is.
Mr. MOORMAN. But if you start with a new census, made on April 1, then in a few years your computations will be comparable with that date, and your figures will be just as efficacious as if they were taken on another date.?
The CHAIRMAN. Well, in regard to accuracy, do you think that & more accurate census could be taken with the weather conditions disagreeable and the features which would obstruct the enumerators in going about?
Mr. OLSEN. I think you have got to weigh the relative advantages and disadvantages.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, you spoke of accuracy; you thought that it would be more accurate in January.
Mr. OLSEN. I think that what will happen will be that in many sections you will be delayed in taking the census in January or December.
The CHAIRMAN. How long delayed? Mr. Olson. I do not know. It would depend on a variety of other conditions, but in the main, I think you will find that most of your schedules will be coming in in January.
The CHAIRMAN. Oh, undoubtedly. If the date is fixed in January there would be some returns made, but if there will be delay, why not start at a period when the delay will be least?
Mr. OLSEN. Well, it is exceedingly important to have the census taken in as short a time as possible.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, that is it.
Mr. Olsex. I would like to add one concluding word, supplementing what I said about the position of the department in this matter. The advisory committee, which I understand has been working with the census, has taken a position favorable to the date we advocate, and the advisory committee on agricultural economics of the Social Science Research Council has passed a resolution favoring the same date; and economists and statisticians that are working close to us feel very much as we do. I think if you would call representatives of those groups before you, you would find our position substantiated by a good many of them.
Mr. MOORMAN. The man who has got to do the figuring OR & comparable basis for the next few years is going to suffer, of course, but what we want is a truer picture of agriculture. I want to call your attention to this letter that was filed here, purporting to represent the American Farm Bureau Federation. This letter is signed by Mr. W. R. Ogg. All you gentlemen will remember his appearance here, and the weight of his testimony, as you will remember his statement, that he did not represent anybody except some gentleman under whom he served in his office, and this opinion here expressed in the name of the American Farm Bureau Federation, is not reflecting the locals or unions or representatives of that order at all, but it is merely the conclusion of a couple of men down there in the office, so far as his testimony reveals the facts.