Milch Cows and Dairy Farming

Comprising the Breeds, Breeding, and Management, in Health and Disease, of Dairy and other Stock; the Selection of Milch Cows, with a full Explanation of Guenon’s Method ; the Culture of Forage Plants, and the Production of Milk, Butter, and Cheese : embodying the most recent Improvements, and adapted to Farming in the United States and British Provinces, with a Treatise upon the Dairy Husbandry of Holland; to which is added Horsfall’s System of Dairy Management. By CHARLES L. FLINT, Secretary of the Massachusetts State Board of Agriculture; Author of a Treatise on Grasses and Forage Plants. Liberally illustrated. Boston : Phillips, Sampson, & Co. pp. 416.

THIS very useful treatise contains a full account of the best breeds of cattle and of the most approved methods of crossing so as to develop qualities particularly desirable ; directions for choosing good milkers by means of certain natural signs; a description of the most useful grasses and other varieties of fodder; and very minute instructions for the making of good butter and the proper arrangement and care of dairies. The author has had the advantage of practical experience as a dairyman, while his position us Secretary of the Massachusetts Board of Agriculture has afforded him more than common opportunity of learning the experience of others.

A volume of this kind cannot fail to commend itself to farmers and graziers, and will be found valuable also by those who are lucky enough to own a single cow. The production of good milk, butter, and meat is a matter of interest to all classes in the community alike; and Mr. Flint’s book, by pointing out frankly the mistakes and deficiencies in the present methods of our farmers and dairymen, and the best means of remedying them, will do a good and much-needed service to the public. He shows the folly of the false system of economy which thinks it good farming to get the greatest quantity of milk with the least expenditure of fodder, and which regards poor stock as cheaper because it costs less money in the original outlay.

If Dean Swift was right in saying that he who makes two blades of grass grow where one grew before is of more service to mankind than he who takes a city, we should be inclined to rank him hardly second as a benefactor of his race who causes one pound of good butter to be made where two pounds of bad were made before. We believe that more unsavory and unwholesome grease is consumed in the United States under the alias of butter than in any other civilized country, and we trust that a wide circulation of Mr. Flint’s thoroughly executed treatise will tend to reform a great and growing evil. The tendency in America has always been to make a shift with what will do, rather than to insist on having what is best; and we welcome this book as likely to act as a corrective in one department, and that one of the most important. The value of the volume is increased by numerous illustrations and a good index.