Excerpt from Address of Hon. Wm. C. Rives, President of the Agricultural Society of Albemarle, at Their Annual Fair, on the 29th of October 1842
If this be true as to the general objects of human science and improvement, how emphatically true is it in regard to that great int... erest with which we are specially connected. As Cultivators of the soil, we live in a state of isolation and dispersion on our respective farms. While the members of other professions and callings are congregated in towns and cities, or are frequently brought together in the exercise of their professional duties, the farmer treads the daily paths ofindustry in the majestic solitude of nature, relying,each one by himself, upon his own unaidedjudg ment in the conduct of his daily toil. By the happy expedient of associations like the present, we are brought up periodically from the solitude of our daily pursuits, each one bringing with him as a contribution to the general fund ofskill and knowledge, the results of his own separate experience and observation to be thrown into a common stock for the benefitof all; for in regard to every species of useful knowledge, community of goods, is now, thanks to the spirit of the age, the established law of the social, and more especially of the agricultural world. The more experienced and successful of our brethren, too, bring with them, to the annual competitions of skill and improvement instituted by these associations, specimens of the choicest productions of their industry and care, animal, vegetable, and mechanical, While the help-meets whom Heaven in its bounty has bestowed upon us, ever ready to assist in every good and useful work, grace the department of the exhibition which belongs to them, With the finer, but not less essential fabrics of their cunning household arts. Who can doubt the efficacy of institutions such as these to incite, stimulate and aid us in running the noble race of indus try and improvement which Providence has set before us.
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