In 1911, University of Idaho Agriculture Dean W.L. Carlyle toured southern Idaho with F.D. Farrell, superintendent of the college’s Farmers’ Institutes, in search of a site to establish a branch agricultural experiment station. The Aberdeen Commercial Club wanted to build a partnership with the University of Idaho that would help the area’s major industry: agriculture. The club, Bingham County Commission, Aberdeen Valley Land and Development Co., and individuals contributed $4,500 to help establish the station that would focus on irrigation and major crops including potatoes and wheat.
The donation funded a 15-year lease on 80 acres and three or four buildings to the university to establish a branch experiment station that became today’s Aberdeen Research and Extension Center.
“From that tiny donation, the center has grown to include 460 acres and 22 scientists who lead teams that help keep Idaho agriculture productive. There’s a lot of work going on,” said Steve Love, center superintendent at Aberdeen.
“The partnership between the USDA Agricultural Research Service and the university’s Idaho Agricultural Experiment Station helps make Idaho agriculture one of Idaho’s economic powerhouses and a leader worldwide,” said John Hammel, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences dean. Today, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences and its critical outreach branch, University of Idaho Extension, work closely with state commissions devoted to potatoes, wheat, barley and other crops.
Find out more about the Aberdeen Research and Extension Center’s history
, or read the complete press release