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TO OUR READERS: Honoring 150 years of accessible higher education

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California Agriculture 66(2):39-39.

Published online April 01, 2012

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In 1862, in a nation torn by secession and Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln signed a visionary law that laid the cornerstone of public higher education. The Morrill Land-Grant College Act gave federal public lands to states, allotting 30,000 acres for each Senator and Representative. The total endowment was $7.55 million, then the value of 17.4 million acres. Today, more than 100 land-grant universities serve the nation and the world, including what many believe is the greatest public university in the world, the University of California.

On the 150th anniversary of its passage, we pay tribute to this profoundly democratic law, which made higher education available to those in every social class, and brought practical information to a nation that was then more than 50% farmers. It was followed by other landmark education laws: the 1887 Hatch Act, establishing Agricultural Experiment Stations at universities; a second Morrill Act in 1890, initiating regular funding; the Smith-Lever Act of 1914, establishing Cooperative Extension; and in 1944, the GI Bill. Today, UC's land-grant university thrives as the Agricultural Experiment Stations at UC Berkeley, Davis and Riverside, and in UC Cooperative Extension offices that serve every county.

See pages 40 to 49 for special coverage of the Morrill Act and its role in building the University of California.

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TO OUR READERS: Honoring 150 years of accessible higher education

Janet L. White
Webmaster Email: wsuckow@ucanr.edu

TO OUR READERS: Honoring 150 years of accessible higher education

Share using any of the popular social networks Share by sending an email Print article
Share using any of the popular social networks Share by sending an email Print article

Publication Information

California Agriculture 66(2):39-39.

Published online April 01, 2012

PDF  |  Citation  |  Permissions

Full text

In 1862, in a nation torn by secession and Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln signed a visionary law that laid the cornerstone of public higher education. The Morrill Land-Grant College Act gave federal public lands to states, allotting 30,000 acres for each Senator and Representative. The total endowment was $7.55 million, then the value of 17.4 million acres. Today, more than 100 land-grant universities serve the nation and the world, including what many believe is the greatest public university in the world, the University of California.

On the 150th anniversary of its passage, we pay tribute to this profoundly democratic law, which made higher education available to those in every social class, and brought practical information to a nation that was then more than 50% farmers. It was followed by other landmark education laws: the 1887 Hatch Act, establishing Agricultural Experiment Stations at universities; a second Morrill Act in 1890, initiating regular funding; the Smith-Lever Act of 1914, establishing Cooperative Extension; and in 1944, the GI Bill. Today, UC's land-grant university thrives as the Agricultural Experiment Stations at UC Berkeley, Davis and Riverside, and in UC Cooperative Extension offices that serve every county.

See pages 40 to 49 for special coverage of the Morrill Act and its role in building the University of California.

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Email: calag@ucanr.edu | Phone: (530) 750-1223 | Fax: (510) 665-3427
Website: http://calag.ucanr.edu