Beautiful certificate from the Sackett Plow & Pulverizer Company
issued 1883. This historic document was printed by the Maverick & Wissinger Company and has an ornate border around it with a vignette of an plowing device. This item has the original signatures of the Company’s President, and Treasurer, and is over 129 years old. The certificate was issued to Orange Judd and endorsed by him on the verso.
Orange Judd Born July 26, 1822 Died December 27, 1892 (aged 70) was an American agricultural chemist, editor, and publisher.
Judd was born of a rural family near Niagara Falls in Niagara County, New York. His grandfather, also named Orange Judd (1763–1844), came from Tyringham, Massachusetts and served as a private in the Berkshire Militia in the Northern Campaigns. His father, Ozias Judd, fought at Black Rock in 1813. Orange Judd's mother was Rheuama Wright, daughter of David Wright who was a private in the New York Militia during the Revolution.
Judd married twice, first to Sarah L. Ford of Boston in 1847, with whom he had four children, three of which died soon after birth, and again to Harriet Stewart of Lockport, New York, with whom he also had four children. His daughter from his first marriage, Sarah Ford, married George Brown Goode in 1877.
Orange Judd's brother, David Wright (1838-1888), was also successful and kept close connections to Orange. Wright was the editor and proprietor of The Hearth and Home, one of Judd's periodicals under his publishing firm Orange Judd and Company. By 1883 Wright had become president of the company. Prior to that in 1871 he had also been elected as a Republican to the New York legislature.
In 1847 Judd graduated from Wesleyan University. After graduating he would take on several teaching positions, first at a high school in Portland, Connecticut in 1847, then at Wesleyan Academy in Wilbraham, Massachusetts from 1848 to 1849, then as a principal of a high school in Middletown, Connecticut in 1850. In 1850 he began studying analytical and agricultural chemistry at Yale for the next three years with John Pitkin Norton. In 1852 he took a job lecturing on agriculture in Windham County, Connecticut until 1853. Judd recalled that his chemistry research at Yale lowered much of his hope for the science, deeming that "much of the so-called agricultural science is yet unreliable." Judd still sought a way to bring the latest research to farmers, but was nevertheless skeptical of much of it.
In 1853 he was made editor of the American Agriculturist (sometimes referred to as the American Agriculturalist), then run by its founders, Anthony B. Allen and his brother Richard L. Allen. He became owner and publisher in 1856. In 1856 Judd moved to Flushing, New York where he lived until 1871. Judd championed the idea of clear and concise writing in journals, and was able to turn a paper of scientific jargon into something any literate farmer was able to understand. Editors would obtain scientific material from colleges and would evaluate it and make it accessible for their readers. He was also one of the first people to practically apply opinion polls—sending out questionnaires on crop reports to his subscribers between May and September and publishing the results in the American Agriculturist. His success helped make American Agriculturist into one of the leading agricultural journals in the nation, going from a circulation 1,000 in 1856, to over 100,000 in 1864. However the paper was hard hit by the depression of 1873, and was failing by 1879. He would stay there until 1881, alongside being the agricultural editor of the New York Times from 1855 to 1863. He became the principal member of the firm Orange Judd and Company, located in Chicago, which focused on publishing agricultural and scientific books, as well as The Hearth and Home from 1870 to 1873.
Wesleyan's Orange Judd Hall of Natural Science at around 1890, where the country's first agricultural experiment station was organised.
Judd traveled in Europe in 1862, and in 1863 he served on the United States Christian Commission in Gettysburg, then in 1864 with the United States Sanitary Commission, later with the Army of the Potomac. However he was later brought home due to illness where he reached almost the point of death. In 1866 he became president of the Alumni Association of Wesleyan, a position he held until 1881. He again traveled to Europe in 1871 with his family through numerous countries. From 1868 to 1869 he became president of the New York, Flushing, and North Side Railroad, as well as the New York and Flushing Railroad, in which he became actively engaged in their construction efforts.
Around this time he began to take a greater interest in the affairs of Wesleyan University. He edited their first edition of the "Alumni Record". In 1871 the Orange Judd Hall of Natural Science was opened through his own work, and held the office of trustee from 1871 to 1881. They would also create the first agricultural experiment station in the country there through his donations. In September 1888, The Orange Judd Publishing Company bought another agricultural journal, James Hill's The Farmer, which was in financial trouble. Judd moved it to Chicago and renamed it the Orange Judd Farmer. However by 1891 Judd still owed Hill $15000, and all correspondence between them would later cease. He also became a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. After 1871 Judd changed his place of residence rather frequently, moving several times between Flushing and New York City, and spending time in Middletown, Connecticut. On account of his poor health he also made a stay in Florida and lived for a time in Europe. Judd died in 1892 in Evanston, Illinois.
The American Agriculturist, Volume 40 1881
Published by the Orange Judd Company
A COMBINED PLOW, PULVERIZER, ETC
A New Combined Flow, Pulverizer, etc.
Our first plowing, some fifty years ago, was done with a wooden mould-board. Then came in the wrought iron mould-board, hammered out by the blacksmith. About forty years ago the introduction of the cast iron mould board, with replaceable points, caused no little excitement among farmers, as these could be produced so much more cheaply than wrought-iron, and being harder they wore longer. But on our stony farm the gain was partly counter-balanced by the breaking of the "points," and often of the "land-side" and even mould-board itself.—A few years later the steel mould-board and points came into use, and subsequently the chilled iron plows. But during all these fifty years of improvement, and from time immemorial before that, the chief ends aimed at have been the perfecting of the old instrument, in form, in material, in the frame, in coulters, guiding wheels, etc. The principle has been the same, viz., the cutting off of a furrow slice and inverting it more or less perfectly.
But there has all the while been the feeling that Jethro Tull was right in claiming that thorough pulverizing the soil was the great requisite of cultivation. And to secure this we have had a succession of implements devised, as cultivators, rotary diggers, rotary harrows, etc. Most of them have been valuable so far as they have helped towards dividing the soil, so as to provide a finer seed bed. But we are inclined to believe that Charles E. Sackett has now made such modifications and additions to the common plow, as to amount to a radical and most valuable change in its mode of operation and in the desirable results produced. Here is a general idea of it: First a surface plow which is readily and quickly adjusted to cut off two, three, or four inches in depth of the soil, and turn it well over into the bottom of the previous furrow. Following this, upon the same bearer or frame, is another plow, adjustable to take up a sub-furrow of any desired depth. But this second, or sub slice, is not merely turned over in a mass upon the top of the first one with only such breaking as the lifting and turning over will secure. Quite different. Upon the frame is an open-work wrought iron wheel or cylinder, say 40 inches in diameter, which follows upon and smoothes down in part the first turned slice of land, with its grass, stubble, weeds, etc. The second furrow is thrown into this revolving wheel, and carried round and round on its inside, among its teeth, and against its open-work bars on the rim and outer side, and it is so broken and pulverized that it drops out upon the buried sod or surface furrow. The result is, that the soil is pulverized quite as much as it could be done with roller and harrow, and without any trampling or packing by teams ; it is left light and fine and in excellent condition for receiving seed. There is also provision for attaching both seed drill and fertilizer distributor. In brief, at one operation the soil is plowed, finely divided; sod, stubble, etc., buried, and seed sown. There are several simple, ingenious devices for raising and lowering the plows and wheels, for various depths, for turning at the side of the field, for self-transporting, etc., etc., that would need engravings and lengthy descriptions to explain them fully.
"The proof of the pudding is in the eating." We visited the New Jersey State Experimental farm last week, and personally tested Mr. Sackett's implements on stubble and sod. The soil was a heavy one, and owing to the long drouth was in bad condition. The trial was very satisfactory on that soil and under those circumstances. A single pair of strong mules worked it with apparent ease on a very hot afternoon. Probably three horses will ordinarily be required, except for light soils, or for shallow work. We found it quite as easy to handle and guide, as the ordinary plow. A riding seat is provided for lazy people, cripples, or invalids. From this trial of it, and a careful study of its mechanism, and the principles of its construction and working, we have strong faith that it will prove a most valuable implement for soil preparation —probably the largest advance in this direction made during a half century. Before giving it an unqualified commendation for general and immediate introduction, we shall, of course, desire to test it upon a greater variety of soils, in different conditions, as to moisture, tilth, toughness, sod, stubble, etc.
The Sackett Combined Plow and Pulverizer Company changed its name to the Sackett Plow and Pulverizer Company on The Sackett Plow and Pulverizer Company in March 1882.
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