3 months ago

Fitzgerald's Town

18. The Annual Ploughing

18. The Annual Ploughing Match at Lincoln. Lyttelton Times. 28 July 1888. Courtesy of Papers Past. 56

The School of Agriculture 19. The School of Agriculture at Lincoln. Courtesy of Lincoln University. In his inaugural address to the Provincial Council in 1853 James Edward FitzGerald, first Superintendent of the Province of Canterbury, spoke of the importance of education. He emphasised the value of a sound training in the practical and theoretical aspects of agricultural practice in order for the province to establish and maintain a sound economy. Although this was seen as a necessary requirement by many settlers, including members of the Lincoln Farmers’ Club, it was another twenty years before that dream became a reality. In 1873 the Council set aside about 100,000 acres of land in the back country as a means of providing income for a proposed School of Agriculture to be administered by the Board of Canterbury University College. Although the council thought it better to place the School and its endowments under a separate administration, this came to nothing when it became clear that provincial government was to be abolished in favour of a national system. The endowed lands needed to be securely controlled by Canterbury interests and to this end an act of parliament was passed ensuring that all education endowments were in the hands of Canterbury University College. It was decided that the School of Agriculture would be established at Lincoln – the railway passing through the village was an advantage. This decision must have delighted the district’s 57

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