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About Sheep

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Gentlemen of the Saline Sheep Breeders' Asociation :- I hardly tiiink it worth while to (iccupy much ot your time on this occasion, yet few thoughts whicli readily suggest themselves as belug closely related to the busiues of tbis meetiiiK, may not be out of place. . There can be no question Dut tüat sheep and wool rank among the first grent Industries of the state and nation; wht-ther considered with regard to the amiiunt of capital invested, tlie amount of labor employed iu the productiou of the ruw material, tlie manufacture and sale of the finlshed fromU, whlch are aconvenlence and luxuiy, if notan absolute necesity, to all classes and conditions of luimanity wherever civüization extends. The hum of the spindle and the clatter of the lom are co-extensive with man'e comfort in all inttions and ages, growing out of and dependinK upon this industry. At the risk of taxing your patlelice, I will present some statisticá on the value of this industry to this country. Except in women's dress goods, the linest cloths and most costly shawls, woolen goods manufactured in the United SUtes are unexcelled inquality, moderate inprice and produced in such reut quaniities as to supply uil that our 57,000,000 people requlre. The wholesale value of the manufactures of wool consumed by our populatlon in 1880, averaged fü per capita, of which the domestic produotion was $5.30, and the foreifin only 70c. Tlius you aee the great mass of tlie woolens consumed by the jreat mass of our people are almost entirely of home production. During the year 1885 the total _ d_ ¦ a . f aar l.i n t I í ¦ 4 i I . Tatué oí tüe imporuiuou ui uuicu vv.not iDcludinK yarns, wasonly $34,675,113, and these consistcd chitfly of articles uíetl by tlie rich, viz: Ladies' and children's ilressjfoods, $18,907,629; fiue cloths, $,- 107,720; costly shawls, $h90,944; readymade wearinR apparel chiefly tor ladi ¦?, $1,434,004; carputs and carpetai, chiefly ol the most cxpensive kinds, $1,080,081. These articles for the opulent,$26,480,378, leaving a balance of $8,194,375 to be dirided among a population of 57,000,000, an average oL about 14' 3c. each. The official ngures of the ceunus ehow that in the year ending June let, 1880, the doinestlc manufacture of woolens aggrgited $267,253.913, or 1% times as mucli as the whole importetion in 1885. To show the magnitude and consequent mportence of the woolcn Induetry of this couhtry, the tbllowing statistics of the woolen milis for 1880, are presented: Capital ïnvested $159,691,69; average number of hands eniployed 161,557; their WHgesW7 39 087; valufi of materlals used $164,371,551; ralue of product st wholesale $3i7r 253 918; wool consumed 307,000,000 pounds. These figure but inadequately expressthe mapiitude of this industry amd its importance to the country. No mention is made of the capital invested or of the hands employed and wages paid 1 020 000 flock masters in the Utnted States engaged in the production of wool. No (tatement showing the capital mvesttd and hands employed in the transportation of the materials by land and sea to tlie milis; and of the products of the milis to the centres of dlstribution and consumption. No particulars of the beneflts resultlng from the payment of vast suma of money to factory hauds and other emploves. to wool growereand their men, to builders and artisana employed in erecting mili, to the manufacturera of textile machinery and thelr mechan ics and other employee, to the army employed In transporting the material and productg, and those enifaged In the sale of the product of the mili. The $220,000,000 thus annually distributed by the wage workere and othert in food, clothing, shelter, etc, becomesa widely extCHded stream that flowe throujfh every partofour country, producing a luxurlunce of prosperity and happiness. Wliile in all probability there is agreat variety of opinión in rejfard to the causes of tle present depressiwi in erery departm.nt of tlie sneep indiwtry, I tlnuk all irc rcaily to aduiit the fact, and the queslion at once forcea iUelf npoa our attention- what can we do to turn the present evil into a permanent'jjood? or in otlier word, taow can wö save ou riel ves fiom a niinous lossf We all know that we cannot sell at present prico without 8ucli loss; neitber are we now gettingany ad(iiintcrfward for time and labor aDBOlutely necewary to maintain the present gtatus of our Hoeks, not to mentiou the extra labor and expense of improTing them. I belleve tliat now Is Jast the best time to weed out, as recommended by our state associatiou, one-tentli, or even more if necessary, and only breed f rom the best, and by extra feeding and care raise the quality of our Hoeks to such a standard that they shall be second to none. Already Michigan Ueep hav obulned that reputatloo, be it oura not only to maintain, but to increas it. It may be a piuw.linK qoetion for sonie of ui to know what to do wlth our culi. We will stippose thuy are registpred, and as far as that goes all right, btit fail in some esseuml qualities ; in sucli case, DO matter abnut pedlgree, Bell to the butcher for what they will bring. Jiut wliy nol. sell for breeding purposes, ii sotueone who will givc more Ihmi the butehet ¦'¦ Because you liurl your mm reuutaliOH n h breedor and liurt thë wholr sheop interests. Nn animal is so woilhlrss to bvccil from H8 h funky tltoviHicjhbivil. Wliy? BecatiPe any animal :i lnn line "I anceotry and yt't a tauttv ön, maken lilm a scalawag: of the lirst water. The imuv severely you let sucli alone the botter off you will be. BntweaS in all industries is only measured by tbc ntclligence and enterpiïse conceDtrBtwl upoti theni, and 1 know of no wider üld or worthicr object for the tliouglit and cffort of man to display themselves, tban in the breo(liUC of tirst-clas stock, from tlu iinproved cliicken to tlie tboronsrhbred borse. As a work of art, lic bui Ida to a model which is h8 ideal, and wliirli he never reacbes, because, llke the mirage of the desert, it is ever eludlug liim in the diitanoe, and nltboiiffli he is ahvays dealiug with unknown forces and condition, inany of which he cannot change or control, yet if he Is persistent xnd uniform in h8 eflbrtg, he will auccceil in etanipiog his ïndividuality upon hls werk, so that he tlmt mits may read. As a science the broeder must know something of the laws of physical life and growth, tne component parts of different kinds of food and their adaptation to suitain life and develop in the younj: the right proportion of bonc and muscle. In the case of sheep the covering has also to be provided for. The growth of wool beiug a contiuual draft upon the animal econoiny. The natural oil of the wool, also, must come from the food consumed; therefore liberal feeding is absolutely necessary if we wonld not mftfce a mp8t miserable failure. If we rightly ioterpfet the signs of the times the nijfht olthedepressioji of this industry is passing, Already the flrst faiut glimmcriur8 .01 a urifrliter day are seen in the distance. The nlght cometli, so also the day, and just as surely as the day succeeds the night, so surely he who labors and waits will secure his reward. An industry so closely allied to man's happlness, yea to his necessities, caunot be ignore.d or even depressed. Then let me urge you, brother rlockmasters, by all the hopes which the signs of the times iiupire, to be ready for the good time coming. Like the boy philosopher when one was gympathlzing wlth him for having lost his kite, said: "I have no time to cry about that, for I am going to make another and a better one," so let U9 instead of meummg oter what we have lost, by diligent attpntion to our tlocks, prove to ourselves and the worW, that LbAUgll we fail, we deserved better luck. ____


Ann Arbor Courier
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