Friday, February 10, 2012

Wheat Map of 1878

Here's a little gem I came across in an 1880 edition of the Ypsilanti Commercial. It's a "Wheat Map of the State of Michigan for 1878." Almost every county has stats for acres under cultivation, bushels of wheat produced, and average number of bushels per acre.

The only states producing more than a million bushels are several in the second, third and forth tiers of counties north of the Ohio border. They are Calhoun, Jackson, and Washtenaw; Livingston and Oakland; and Ionia, Clinton, and Genessee counties. Washtenaw is also one of the counties with yields of over 20 bushels an acre.

Now, who is (what looks like) that lonely and despondent wheat farmer up in Roscommon County? He's got 6 little acres up there that yielded 48 bushels, for a meagre 8 bushels per acre. One hopes that poor man found better fortune.

There is no wheat at all reported in several upper lower peninsular counties: Oscoda, Crawford, Benzie, Leelenaw, and Montmorency. Also, Arenac county has not yet been carved from Bay County, and Kalkaska is spelled Kalcasca, the latter of which sounds like one of the innumerable miraculous patent medicines of the day.

1 comment :

Dusty D said...

Apologies for the poor quality of this all its travels from the original newsprint to microfilm to the Archives microfilm reader and a journey through the Archives printer then my home scanner and THEN this blog, I'm glad I can read any of it at all...