January 1, 1912
The purposes of this bulletin are to give some of the results of the Boys' Corn Club work in South Carolina during the year 1911, and also to give some instructions to teachers and others on how to form a Club. The Col lege is frequently called upon to give this information, hence it seems appropriate to give the subject a brief dis cussion in the form of a bulletin.
The objects of the work are three-fold : To interest the boy in rural life, give him something of interest to do on the farm, and to increase the production of corn. As to how well it is doing, the latter can be shown by sta tistics on corn production in the State now and when the work was first begun. In the year 1909, the first year the Corn Club work was introduced in this State, the acreage planted to corn was 1,565,832, and the average yield was 13.3 bushels per acre. In 1911, the acreage was 1,790,000, an increase of 14.31 per cent over 1909, and the average yield was 18.2 bushels per acre, an in crease of 36.84 per cent over 1909. During 1911 the State suffered from one of the most severe drouths in its history.
Of course, the Boys' Corn Club does not claim the entire credit for this increase in' both acreage and yield, but it is one of the principle factors in stimulating an interest in corn production, both among boys and men. This increased interest in corn growing follows the or ganization of Boys' Corn Clubs in every Southern state. The planting of more acres in corn is not the only important result coming from the organization of these Clubs. It is safe to say that seed now planted averages twenty-five per cent better than that used before a sys tematic study of corn was undertaken. The points go ing to make up a good ear of seed corn have been taught to the boys and to the older farmers through the boys. These points in selecting seed or show corn have been fol lowed by the boys, however, more closely than by the men. This is easily shown by glancing over the list of prize winners at the various corn shows, and especially the South Atlantic Corn Exposition held at Columbia, December 11-16, 1911.
In this contest, the sweepstakes prize for the best ten ears in South Carolina was won by Burrill Knight, a member of the Boys' Corn Club, of Chesterfield County. In 1910 the sweepstakes prize was won by Yancy Mathis, of St. Charles, Lee County, Boys' Corn Club. The Boys' Corn Club work was first organized in this State in 1909 in the following counties : Aiken, Flor ence, Clarendon, Marlboro, Newberry, and Lee. The re sults in these counties proved so gratifying that in 1910 the work was carried into many other counties. In 1909 the highest yield, 152 bushels, was made by Bascomb Usher, of Marlboro County, and up to that time was the highest yield ever made by a boy. He won State and County prize, making the trip to Washington.