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Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties, UC Cooperative Extension Records
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The San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties, University of California Cooperative Extension Records span the years 1914-2000 (bulk) and consist largely of material from the San Luis Obispo offices. The first series, Annual and Historical Reports (1923-1998, undated), contains statistical and narrative reports recorded on standardized forms, allowing for uniform reporting. The annual reports are written by farm advisors, specialists, and home demonstration agents and document their extension activities for the year. Narrative reports provide textual information on extension activities. Farm advisors and home demonstration agents describe the successes and challenges of their work, educational topics covered in trainings and demonstrations, and the variety of meetings held for farmers and their families. The reports provide a comprehensive indication of UCCE's influence in rural communities. Additional topics outlined in both the statistical and narrative annual reports involve dairy, grain, and poultry projects, 4-H club work, food and nutritional programs, home improvement projects such as septic tanks and utilities, and the results of crop and livestock production.
At the turn of the previous century, growing concern over the quality of life for rural Americans prompted President Theodore Roosevelt to appoint a Commission on Country Life in 1908. One of the direct outcomes of the Commission's recommendations was the passage of the Smith-Lever Act in 1914, which established a national extension service to place the knowledge generated at land-grant universities into the hands of farmers and rural citizens. The Agricultural Extension Service formalized and built upon existing efforts of land-grant universities to enhance the knowledge of farmers and apply scientific discoveries for improved agricultural practices. Beginning in 1913, the Agriculture Extension Service, later known as UC Cooperative Extension, placed farm advisors employed by the University of California in every county that formed a farm bureau and agreed to sponsor Extension Service work. While arrangements have evolved, advisors continue to work in all California counties today and address problems ranging from soil conditions and land reclamation to irrigation; from livestock breeding to improved varietals; and from mechanization to disease and pest management, to enable farms to increase efficiency and productivity.
15 Linear Feet
This collection is intended to support teaching, research, and private study. Copyright belongs to the Regents of the University of California. Use of the materials beyond that allowed by fair use or by any Creative Commons licenses assigned requires the written permission of the copyright owner(s). For further information, please contact the University of California, Merced Library at library@ucmerced.edu.
This collection is open for research. A portion of the records have been digitized and are freely available online. The material is located at the University of California, Merced Library. For help locating material please contact library@ucmerced.edu.