Margaret Irwin (#58) Transcript
DT: Can I ask how it was you came to the University of Wisconsin. I know youdidn't grow up here, and were not trained here.
MI: Yes. I came because my husband had a job here. He came here from New York. Icame here from Ames. Bob had been at the Rockefeller Institute in New York. So we started housekeeping here in Madison.
DT: As newly married?
MI: As newly married, yes. That was in 1930. So first I did the usual thing ofsetting up the housekeeping in an apartment and getting acquainted. Then I began 00:01:00to get bored. I wrote some articles on nutrition for magazines and sent them out and got them back. Once in awhile I'd sell one.
DT: What had your field of study been at Ames?
MI: First of all I had graduated in chemistry and gotten a master's degree inchemistry. Then I moved over to the home economics department, and I was the Purnell research person there. While I was doing research in nutrition, I gradually over a number of years took enough courses and finished my Ph.D.
DT: You did all this while you were still at Ames.
MI: I did all this at Ames, yes. Then coming up here, I gradually got bored. So00:02:00I decided I needed a job. I went to see Abby Marlatt in home economics. She didn't have anything that seemed right for me. So I went to see Dr. Steenbock. Now I had done research in the vitamins down at Ames in the statistical treatment of vitamin data. He was interested and very pleasant to talk to. I remember one thing he said when he looked over at my transcript. Didn't you get just sick and tired of taking so many courses?
So anyway, after a week or so he called me up and he said that some men had beento see him from the Lever Brothers Company, and they would like to send a grant 00:03:00to the university for someone to do some research on putting vitamin D into their fat product, which was Spry. Would I be interested? Come on over and talk to him. So I went, and we agreed that I would work on this project.
Well the grant was, I presume, $2,200 or $2,400. Of that, I was paid $1,800 assalary, and the rest went for supplies or laboratory equipment, whatever we needed. At first we tried irradiating Spry and feeding it to rats. At that time 00:04:00the WARF was having many applications for the--you see, they had the patent. You had to apply to the WARF--
DT: The vitamin D patent?
MI: --the vitamin D patent, yes--before you could enrich your product. Manycompanies thought that that would be a good selling point. So they would apply to WARF in order to get permission to irradiate their food. Well Lever Brothers was investigating that. So I made up rat food with their fat, irradiated and non-irradiated and so on, and fed it to the rats. Finally as time went on, it gradually became clear, I think to Dr. Steenbock particularly, that the only 00:05:00real good place to put vitamin D in food was in milk, because of the calcium and phosphorus there. Because in building bones and in preventing rickets, you have got to have calcium, and phosphorus, and vitamin D. So that was the eventual solution of this. But there were a number of foods that were tested from time to time.
Well now at that time, at 1930, there was really great interest and enthusiasmin nutrition, much more so than there is today. Although right now, I think you suggested, Mrs. Taylor, that the organic food idea has sort of re-stimulated 00:06:00people in nutrition.
Well I don't know how widespread it is, except I noticed that now chain storesare having departments of organic foods or something of that.
Their talking about nutrition. But during those early years, with all thepublicity about vitamins and the wonderful things they would do in curing rickets, and pellagra, and scurvy, and helping you to see, and preventing colds, vitamin A, and all that sort of business. So that was the tenor of those years.
Now a controversy that was developing at that time was butter versus the oleo controversy.00:07:00
DT: That early?
MI: Yes, it was starting then. There was talk and a few papers, some fromMinnesota. And Elvehjem was doing some research on it. I didn't do anything. But another interest in fats at the time, was the cholesterol and hardening of the arteries.
DT: That started then? early?
MI: That started then with talk, not with much action, but a few papers. It wasthe vanguard, of course, of these things that developed as time went on. Well anyway, it seemed to stimulate research in fats. So Lever Brothers, they were interested to go ahead and do anything that Dr. Steenbock wanted to do on 00:08:00researching of fats just theoretically. So the thing that we started out on was on the digestibility of fats. We devised and experiment wherein we fed rats, with a stomach tube, a certain amount of fat. Then we would kill the rat, take the food out of the stomach, the intense, and the caecum, and analyze it for fat to see how much had been absorbed. Now we would do this one hour after feeding, two hours, three hours, four hours, and so on.
Well then we got into blood analysis. So I'd take the blood and I'd bleed the00:09:00rats from the heart. Then we'd analyzed the blood, for fat that was in the blood. I think I could say that the whole project in the end showed that all fats are eventually digested. But the ones that are digested fastest are those of low melting point, butters and all that. The hydrogenated fats were a higher melting point. Then there are the animal fats that are really a very high melting point, mutton, and things like that.
Well the time was marching on. In 1936 our son was born, and in '37, a daughter.00:10:00So I kind of faded out of the laboratory. But I might mention this, when I told Dr. Steenbock that I was pregnant, he said that it doesn't seem to bother you. There's no reason why you shouldn't keep on working. I said, I never felt better in my life. As a modern attitude toward women, I think he showed it there in those days. So I continued until a few months before Joe was born.
Well then I of course didn't do anything except stay home until some time later.00:11:00Then I must have written the bulletin, the first bulletin, because that was in 1939.
DT: Before we go on to that, would you like to talk about Dr. Steenbock a bit?
MI: Sure, that would be fine. I'd be glad to.
DT: I'd like to hear anything you can remember about him.
MI: Well Dr. Steenbock was a very devoted scientist, absolutely devoted. Heworked hard and constantly. I admired him greatly. He was a very careful thinker, maybe a slow thinker, but a very careful and accurate one. There were no fly by night results coming out of his laboratories. He had absolute 00:12:00integrity. He had many students, and he supervised them all very carefully.
[break in audio]--laboratory every day. He was reserved, but he was alwayspleasant. I got along with him very well. He didn't always get along with everybody.
DT: Oh, he didn't?
MI: No he didn't. I think part of it was because he was so often right.
DT: I see. I guess that can be annoying sometimes.
MI: It can be quite annoying, yes. But anyway, he had his faults, of course. Weall do. Nevertheless, I grew to be quite fond of him. I had a laboratory, which 00:13:00had been his, right next to his office. The door would often be open so that we could have cross ventilation. So I would see people coming in to see him all the time. I was aware of the fact that he was getting tremendous stacks of mail, largely because of publicity about vitamin D, and all the wonderful things it would do for you child and so forth.
Then there was occasionally an article in a magazine with his picture that wouldtell about this wonderful scientist who had given everything to the university 00:14:00except a portion of the income that was to come from this patent. So his wealth, his growing wealth, was mentioned in the magazines. Then he would be besieged with everything wanting money for this good cause and that good cause.
DT: Oh yes. I suppose.
MI: Letters, this mail, I can remember one time he showed me about four inchesof mail.
DT: Just in one day?
MI: No, I doubt it, a collection of requests for money. He got to the placewhere he thought it was pretty silly to have money. It was a nuisance. It really 00:15:00was a nuisance. However, he didn't object to increasing the amount that he had, and investing wisely. He talked to me about that once in a while.
DT: Did he?
MI: I remember he had said, if you want to build a house, if you can keep itunder $10,000, you'll never lose any money on it. Well we did just that. And we didn't lost any either.
DT: He was right as you said.
MI: Yes. He was right. But he would do this, if he had some money to invest, hewould get in the car and go and look at the company that he was considering investing in, and he told me the place he went was to do research there, to see what their ideas were and what they were doing in the way of research. He went 00:16:00to Abbott Laboratories down in the Chicago area. I remember him saying they had a fine research programs. I don't know whether he invested or whether it was successful or not. But anyway, that was his approach.
DT: One of his criteria.
MI: One of his criteria, yes. Well we always had a wonderful Christmas party forthe entire lab group. He would plan all this. I didn't have anything to do with it.
DT: You just went.
MI: I just went. One time a hay wagon collected us on a snowy winter night. We00:17:00piled into the hay and road out to Chanticleer. Do you know Chanticleer?
DT: Yeah, I've heard of it.
MI: Well I don't know if it still exists. But anyway, at that time it was asupper club. He had taken over the whole place, and we had a great big turkey dinner. We danced and had a fine orchestra and a lot of fun. So he had his very human side too.
DT: That sounds wonderful.
MI: I knew Evelyn Van Donk in the laboratory. I worked right with Evelyn. She isnow Evelyn Steenbock. But they were not married until long after that. Now what? Some of the other people in the department? Would this be a good time? 00:18:00
DT: Yes, I would like very much to hear about them.
MI: I knew Professor Hart. He was, of course, chairman of the department. He wasgreat, a warm, sympathetic person, very patient. He had good solid judgment. I can recall one time when there was a promoter here, a man who wanted to prepare soft curd milk for babies. Professor Hart talked about that to us. It never did develop because, of course, the homogenization of milk makes it soft curd.
DT: I see. So it was not necessary.00:19:00
MI: But he was smart enough to see that early.
Dr. Elvehjem was very kindly, full of interesting experiences. He was on acommittee in Washington during the war, a nutrition committee, which stimulated a good deal of interest Interesting. in nutrition attempting to try to keep the civilian population healthy, because our doctors had all gone to war. Everybody was working double time, and more subject perhaps to all kinds of diseases therefore.
It was at that time, that word came from Washington that we should start00:20:00teaching people to use whole wheat bread.
DT: A good idea, I guess.
MI: Well at that time, our flour was not enriched. Nothing was added to flour asit is now. Now they add vitamin B. They add all the things they take out.
DT: That's kind of ridiculous, isn't it?
MI: But at that time we didn't have that. White flour was just ordinary starchmostly. So I recall Luella Mortenson and I had a project of demonstrating the making of whole wheat bread. I'm getting a little but ahead of myself here.
DT: We can come back to that when we talk a little bit more about things that00:21:00were going on during the war.
MI: Well let's see, Karl Link, brilliant, interesting, egotistical, witty,humorous. When they built the addition to the building, I recall his stopping my husband and myself out there in the car on day and saying, "Now look at the size of that wing--"
DT: Which building are we talking about?
MI: This is biochemistry. "--Look at all those rooms. Do you suppose we haveenough brains to fill it?"
DT: Nice comment.
MI: Yeah nice comment. Well he was interesting, is interesting. He's still alive.
MI: Then after having stayed home for a time, I was hired by the University to00:22:00write the milk bulletin. Noble Clark was the one who got me to do that.
DT: Why don't you tell me about that a little bit.
MI: Well this was also a part of the nutrition enthusiasm age, and attempting toget people to eat rightly. He wanted a bulletin written that would promote, to some extent, the use of milk, partly because Wisconsin is a dairy state, and partly for general welfare of the populace. So I spent a number of months in the 00:23:00library reading and writing, and we came out with this milk as a food throughout life.
DT: When was this?
MI: Well that was in 1939. This bulletin was written by Margaret House Irwin, itsays, under the general supervision of E.B. Hart, Harry Steenbock, and C.A. Elvehjem. Well, after I had it all completed, written, and approved, I and Noble Clark, we let them read it.
DT: Oh I see.
MI: They may have made a small change here and there, but nothing really.
DT: So nothing really substantial.
MI: I thought I ought to have my name on it and a little more recognition, but00:24:00no. That's the first time I felt any discrimination for being a woman, but I did in this. They thought this would not go over if my name was on it only. Maybe they were right. They probably were.
DT: But still.
MI: But still. Nowadays, I'd doubt if they'd do it. I don't know, they might.Well now this bulletin was revised and put out in 1954 as you see. Now they've modified themselves somewhat on this, and they say, this is a revision of an early publication by Margaret House Irwin, brought up to date by the author in 00:25:00cooperation with the University of Wisconsin staff members in the departments of biochemstry, dairy and food industry, dairy house industry, agricultural economics, and the school of home economics, and the medical school. Now this again, was the same, except that we took it to all these different departments for reading. Well, there you are.
DT: Did the make any substantial suggestions? No, maybe a slight change inEnglish, but there were no substantial changes. This bulletin was one of the most popular bulletins that they ever got out.
MI: The Extension Department sold this to milk companies all over the country.00:26:00
DT: No just Wisconsin?
MI: No, no. This was to educate their milk men to sell milk, and the people intheir plants to know about milk. We sold thousands of copies, the university did, at a very small rate.
DT: That's fascinating.
MI: Yes. I even got one or two letters from Hawaii.
DT: My, it did go a long way.
MI: So it went around. But I think it was a good little bit of education,propaganda or--
MI: --whatever. I don't want to call it propaganda. It wasn't that. It was fact,really. But it was in a very popular form that a layman could read.
DT: Now where should we go? What's next? The war work? Home ec?00:27:00
DT: Would you maybe mention a little bit about your connection with the HomeEconomics Department. Did you eventually have one?
MI: Yeah. That actually came about, I think, through the milk bulletin. I tookthe original copy over to Ms. Zuill. She was then at an apartment.
DT: Frances Zuill?
MI: Frances Zuill, because Abby had retired. So she read it. Then she talked tome. Then it was getting near wartime, 1939, '40, '41, '42. So she wanted to know if I would teach nutrition in home ec.
Well the children, by that time, were old enough so I could leave them with00:28:00help. My mother had come to live with us, so she was there. So I was able to get away, and I went back part-time and taught nutrition with May Reynolds, and also freshman foods. I enjoyed that very much. I enjoyed the youngsters, especially the freshmen, somehow. They're still quite innocent and trusting in those days. They still had a little kidishness about them, not quite adult. They were fun.
MI: Then when the war got really active, we, in home economics took on a course00:29:00called Red Cross canteen course.
DT: What was that?
MI: Well I was supposed to teach nutrition and the preparation of foods for acanteen, which would go out and feed people in case of a disaster. So we organized this course, and the girls registered for it. And what we did was to prepare a luncheon meal. Then we served it. We prepared it in the quantities that you would prepare it for a canteen. We had set up tables, and we had a cafeteria luncheon. Anybody who wanted to could come in and have their lunch, 00:30:00and they could eat the canteen food. It would be a heavy soup, or it would be a casserole, and sandwiches, and a dessert, a simple dessert, enough, a glass of milk, cup of coffee. So I think we charged $0.35 for that meal.
DT: Where was this set up?
MI: It was set up in the home ec building in one of the laboratories, and it wascrowded. It got more and more popular. It was good food, and it certainly was reasonable. At $0.35 we made so much money, Ms. Zuill was astonished.
DT: Really? That's incredible, particularly today.
MI: Well Ms. Zuill, she was a go-getter. I have never known anybody who had so00:31:00many ideas. She was really a fine administrator, and very lively.
One time I went with two other girls and Ms. Zuill on an extension tour. We madetalks around the state. That was during that time when were talking of nutrition. I was talking about child feeding. That was fun. As long as you didn't have to do all the time, it was fun. I wouldn't want to do it all the time. Would you?
DT: It would be quite a strain, I would imagine.
MI: Quite. Well it was at this time that the whole wheat bread demonstrations00:32:00took place too. Many people housewives, in Madison, came over to the home ec department and Luella and I would have a demonstration cooking foods so that you save the vitamins and making the whole wheat bread. It was an interesting time, but a sad time too, during the war.
DT: That was a period of great strain.
MI: A period of great strain, yes. Furthermore, it was so different, that is wewere all involved. We were all interested. We were all doing everything we could to help. People were drawn closer together because of that. It wasn't like the 00:33:00Korean War which we just read about in the newspapers, far away, and the Vietnam War which we protested, many of us. Or at least we grew to protest, let us say, as time went on.
DT: My memory is one of a type of involvement that I don't associate with eitherthe Korean War or Vietnam. You mentioned, I think, when we were talking earlier about something I wrote down as a disaster class.
MI: Oh, well that was the canteen.
DT: That was the canteen?
MI: That was the canteen, yes. I had the girls imagine a disaster, a plant up at00:34:00Baraboo was bombed, 500 people didn't have any food. So plan food for them. What if the campus was bombed? They would put a notice up on the room where we served the luncheon, what type of disaster it was, half in fun, but anyway.
We carried through on that. We had to wash the dishes, I remember, in somethingthat would sterilize them. It smelled badly. The girls didn't like that. It was an interesting thing to do.
DT: I wonder if you want to talk for a minute or two about May Reynolds?00:35:00
MI: Oh yes.
DT: You said that you'd worked with her.
MI: Yes. May and I became very good friends. We worked on this nutrition coursetogether. She was the lecturer and I ran the-- what did we call them-- the sessions where we questioned in between lectures. We took the roll. They took roll in those days. We helped with the examination papers, correcting those. We both lived in Charlotte. We both had red hair. We were just sort of a pair of 00:36:00twins. She has certainly been a wonderful person. When you think of being left early with her children and going back to school. Then finally getting a Ph.D. by little bits over the years, holding down a job and being very active. Here she is now, retired for many years, and still she goes out and teaches a semester here and a semester there. Some other university always wants here.
DT: Pretty remarkable.
DT: It's nice to be reminded that there are remarkable women as well asremarkable men.
MI: Yes I think so. I don't want to be-- and I'm not-- definitely not a violent00:37:00women's libber at all, and I think they're making great mistakes, some of them On the other hand, I do think that there has been discrimination against women. They haven't received the salaries that the men have for doing exactly the same work very often. Don't you think that's true often?
DT: It would seem to be. Did you feel this while you were working at the university?
MI: I didn't mind the money actually, because I didn't really need it.
DT: But were you aware that you were not getting equal pay, so to speak?
MI: Yes, definitely I was aware, Because I had a husband on the staff, I wasn'tgetting a salary that I would normally have commanded. But somehow, in my 00:38:00generation, we didn't fight that.
DT: You assumed this was the way it was.
MI: We just assumed this was the way it was. I had come up through chemistry,and I had seen there that it was very difficult for a woman to be a chemist, to get a job as a chemist. That was really one reason that I went over into home economics, because I thought there was more opportunity for women there.
DT: I see. That is very interesting.
MI: One thing did happen. I don't know if I ought to tell you. You can cross itoff if you don't think I should.
DT: All right, fine.
MI: At one stage when Bob became chairman of the department, he was called to00:39:00the office and told that there was sort of Very an understanding with the legislature that men on the faculty would not have their wives on the faculty.
DT: A sort of nepotism rule?
MI: Nepotism rule. So it was quietly done, you see, in that way. But itdiscouraged me.
DT: So you then quite being associated with the department.
MI: Well, yes. I quit being associated with the department. May Reynolds cameonce and asked me if I would like to come back and do some research with her. I said yes, I would like to in a way. But on the other hand, I don't think they'll hire me, because Bob had told me about this. She sort of indicated that maybe I 00:40:00ought to fight it. But I didn't. Then I didn't know what backing I had. I think that it wasn't essential. I would have, I'm sure, if it'd been essential.
But by that time, my mother was an invalid, and I had two lively children,teenagers, who had almost behooved me to stay on the job at home, as long at it wasn't necessary to anything else.
DT: I think it's interesting. That should have been the reason, or the immediatereason why you stopped.
MI: There's one other thing I did over there that I forgot to mention, and that00:41:00is I wrote another bulletin, that time with May Cowles. Somewhere along in there, I don't know the date of that. It was actually a study based on the census on farm policy. I didn't know anything about it, but she did. I did the research, getting the stuff out of the census and getting the statistical calculations.
DT: What was the purpose of this?
MI: The bulletin? Turn that off a minute.
DT: --farm housing in the North Central region. That's a rather extensionregion, isn't it? It takes in most states now. 00:42:00
MI: Yes. It takes in a number of states. Well, there they are, all these, Northand South Dakota, you see, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska. That's the way the data was classified in the census, I believe. No I don't think so.
The North Central region was an organization of research on many things. But Maywas interested in farm housing. We gathered the data on plumbing, bathrooms, 00:43:00electricity, water, and kitchen, and all kinds of things like that in farm housing. It wasn't my field, but I worked under her direction.
DT: You got most of this material from the census?
MI: Most of it, yes.
DT: What is the data, now that you have that?
DT: So I suppose it was the 1950 census, perhaps.
MI: 1950 census. Weather data, we got a lot of weather data. It was so long ago,00:44:00I had almost forgotten.
DT: It's easy to do. I haven't asked you about Mr. Peterson yet. I got theimpression that you knew him some.
MI: Yes. I knew him, knew Mrs. Peterson. They were very interesting. He workedthere in the building. I never worked with him. I knew him socially. We used to eat with them occasionally down at the University Club. They always ate dinner there. Mrs. Peterson didn't cook. She did other things. I remember him saying one time that he didn't bother at all about the income tax. Mary did that, 00:45:00things like that.
They were great bird watchers. They were great skaters. They used to go to adancing club regularly until they were really very old, but still they would go dancing at Blackhawk.
DT: Blackhawk Country Club?
MI: No, Night Hawks was the name of the club.
DT: I guess that isn't generally known in academic circles.
DT: No, perhaps not. Well is there anybody else that I use know that's gone maybe?
MI: --I knew them socially as well as knowing him in the building. In fact, I00:46:00consider Mrs.Elvehjem my good friend. She happens to be in a club that I belong to. So I see her frequently. One kind of funny thing that happened one time when we were young--
MI: --an experiment going with chickens that he was feeding cod liver oil to.The controls were fed a good diet, some with and some without cod liver oil. We came to the end of the experiment, but they were perfectly good frying chickens. So he decided that we couldn't waste those. So there was a party at the 00:47:00Elvehjems house, and those chickens formed the meat for the dinner. The only trouble was, when they were served and tasted, they tasted of cod liver oil. So it wasn't really a success.
DT: I guess not. I hope his experiment with them was a success.
MI: It was a success, but not the aftermath.
DT: Did you know Ms. Marlatt at all?
MI: More by reputation.
DT: You did mention that she didn't hire you in the beginning.
MI: That's right. I knew her, and our relationship with cordial enough. But I00:48:00never felt warm toward her like I did toward Ms. Zuill, for instance, as head of the home ec department. But she had her points too.
[break in audio]--say really, because he was another person in the departmentthere that I'd worked with. I didn't seem to ever know her very well.
DT: You didn't know her outside of your work?
MI: Outside? No, not much.
DT: How about Ms. Henderson?
MI: No I didn't know her. I knew Agnes Leindorff quite well, because I had an00:49:00office with her. She was in art education. I grew very fond of her. She's a good friend.
DT: Is there anybody else who comes to mind, particularly, we haven't discussed?
MI: No, I don't think so. Maybe we're through.
MI: Well during the canteen course, one thing we did was attempting to bringattention to foods and to their nutritive value. I had the youngsters in the class ask for the use of the display case that we had down in the hall of home 00:50:00economics. Now that had always been used for art objects. So we asked Ms. Zuill if we could use it for foods one, to have a week's exhibit of foods instead of a week's exhibit of art. So she thought that was fine.
So the had one exhibit that cause a great deal of comment. They put down a glassof milk and a platter that had 24 shredded wheat biscuits on it. Those two foods contained exactly the same amount of calcium. So their signs said if you want 00:51:00calcium, it's easier to drink a glass of milk then to eat 24 shredded wheat biscuits. I hope that was quite cute of them.
DT: That's very nice.
MI: Ms. Zuill was very pleased.
DT: So this was your week's exhibit.
MI: That was the week's exhibit. Then we took other things, iron, vitamins, andso forth once in a while. Of course we didn't do this all the time because the art department would have it in between. But every once in awhile we would ask for it for nutrition and do something.
DT: A very good idea, educating the public as well as feeding them.
MI: Yes, we were trying.
MI: What were we talking about just now?00:52:00
DT: You were saying that there was something you should have said earlier.
MI: Well one thing that I might have said was that I felt, when I came to theUniversity of Wisconsin, I felt a breath of fresh air.
DT: I hope you explain that.
MI: There was the freedom here that I hadn't experienced in the otherinstitutions that I had been in, either as a staff member or as a student. People said what they wanted to say, and we all took it in stride. I just felt there was the freedom here that was very desirable intellectually.
DT: In the general atmosphere?
MI: In the general atmosphere of the university, yes I did. I hope it continues forever.00:53:00
DT: What do you think made the difference?
MI: Well I don't know really. It's an attitude as much as anything. In thelaboratory there was a very good feeling between those of us that worked there. Fortunately we didn't have any malcontents. I suppose that was our good fortune. But it was a pleasant place to work. You could express you opinion and people woudn't get mad.
DT: Even if you disagreed?
MI: Even if you disagreed. You let them express yours to you. That, I thought,00:54:00was great.
DT: It sounds like a very good atmosphere for experimentation and research.
MI: Yes. I think it is. I think the University of Wisconsin has been noted forinterdepartmental cooperation, whereas many universities, just the opposite exists.
DT: Did you notice this yourself?
MI: Yes. I think I noticed it through Bob's work too. Definitely with thedifferent departments, there's very little picky stuff. There's some always. People are people.
DT: Yes but it's noteworthy if there's relatively little.00:55:00
MI: Yes. I think that's perhaps one reason for the reputation of Wisconsin.
[break in audio] --Letters & Science and the Ag school.
DT: That seems likely. I understand, I think, that some areas of study whichwere at one time in Letters & Science then were changed to the Ag school.
MI: Then, I think, the popularity of the ag school out over the state because itwas very immediate help to the farmers, and to the manufactures, and to the 00:56:00canners, and so on. It brought about a little jealousy on the part of those who wrote books that were too intellectual for the farmers to read. The farmers voted for the legislature that appropriated the money for the university and things like that. It all goes round and round.
DT: It's money too.
MI: It's money.
DT: I suppose the Ag school perhaps a little less trouble getting money than maybe--
MI: Than other departments, I'm sure they did. Because what they were doing wasmore popular with the general population, but maybe not a bit more necessary in the end.
[break in audio] --when I first came here to see an article in the paper, which00:57:00really was lambasting Glenn Frank, who was the president of the University. I don't think that would ever have been done in Ames, Iowa. No matter what you thought of the University president. I don't think it would come out at that time when I was there.
DT: Oh really? Whereas here, you feel they were quite frank.
MI: Quite frank, quite free, expressed themselves.
DT: If they didn't like what he was doing, they said so.
MI: They said so.
Margaret Irwin (#58) Transcript