January 12. The committee found that the college owed $160,000 for goods and supplies which had been ordered. Approximately $300,000 belonging to the fund from which these bills should have been paid had been put into building in anticipation of the unpaid state building warrants. They also found $10,000 in unpaid interest on loans. The treasury was empty and the committee was forced to borrow money to purchase stamps. Morale was low, as the faculty and staff had been told that no one could be assured of a job after July 1, 1933. Furthermore, they had been paid in certificates of indebtedness for the past ten months. No concerted effort had been made to register students for the fall. Rumors circulated that API might not open.
January 12. Duncan had played a central role in preparation of the college budget, in part because he had more experience in financial affairs than Wilmore. With respect to the budget, Governor Miller reported that as of October 1, 1932, the state owed the college a little less than $1.5 million.
December 9. The administrative committee reported that the faculty had been loyal during the school's financial difficulties. The cooperation of the merchants and landowners of Auburn and Opelika had done much to make this possible. For the fiscal years that ended September 30, the college had been able to pay forty-five percent of budgeted salaries.
July 17. The administrative committee submitted its report to the board of trustees. Among other things, they noted that the faculty now was receiving sixty percent of their budgeted salaries.
July 17. Because of the depression and the federal government's subsequent efforts in behalf of agriculture, the extension service had had an active year. Among other things, they were called upon to administer the Agricultural Adjustment Act. Their first effort under that act involved "taking cotton out of production," which was accomplished "under the leadership of the county agents."
December 31. API entered into an agreement with the Tennessee Valley Authority for cooperative arrangements related to agricultural research and extension in the Tennessee Valley.
August 27. The board authorized the president to enter into agreements with agencies producing and/or distributing electrical power in the state of Alabama and to receive funds from them. This was done under the authority of the Experimental Station and Extension Service missions.
March 1. Duncan submitted his letter of resignation as director of the Extension Service, a position he had continued to hold since his appointment as president. He recommended P.O. Davis as his replacement.
June 25. Governor Graves stated that API's extension work served "the forgotten man."
June 13. The executive committee of the board named P.O. Davis secretary of the executive committee and of the full board.
June 13. The executive committee was empowered to act for the full board in securing federal funds for building projects. The board empowered Duncan to let bids for the construction projects discussed on April 26.
October 3. P.O. Davis resigned as secretary of the board and Ralph Brown Draughon was appointed in his place.
October 20. Draughon was appointed secretary of the board's executive committee.
November 10. The board voted to accept the offer of federal funds for the construction projects discussed on April 26.
October 12. The committee appointed to investigate the Orr case had met on October 11. J.A. Parrish, principal of Lee County High School, reported that Orr had a negative attitude toward Miss Graves, who taught home economics at the high school. Apparently, Orr had been called to substitute for Graves during an absence, but students refused to attend her classes. Graves eventually resigned on account of her relationship with Orr. Parrish concluded that if Orr had been employed by the high school he would have dismissed her after the first year. Bert Mardre, superintendent of the Opelika schools, reported that Orr had had a successful relationship with OHS, but on a very limited basis. Dean Z.B. Judd of the School of Education noted that part of Orr's contract concerned training of high school home economics teachers. Her failure to get along with area high schools limited her ability to fulfill her obligations under the contract.
First, Alabama agriculture had suffered a relative decline compared with other southern states. From 1934-9 Alabama ranked eleven of out thirteen southern states in farm income. From 1939-41 the state ranked thirteenth. In 1945 the state ranked forty-sixth in the nation, with only Mississippi and West Virginia lower. The report stated that "the Extension Service, as the basic farm agency," had "responsibility for this failure" because it had "constantly assumed credit for any degree of success."
Second, the service had failed to cooperate with other state and federal farm agencies. County school superintendents indicated that local agents were willing to cooperate, but could not do so because of interference from headquarters in Auburn. Statistics from the Production Credit Corporation indicated that a smaller number of Alabama farmers had borrowed from their cooperatively-owned lending associations than any other state in the South. For the past fifteen years, the service had been undermining cooperative farm activities. In 1930-1, for example, Alabama had been second [in the South?] in cooperative farm business, but now it was last, with one-sixth the amount of Mississippi. The service sought to take over every other farm agency. In 1946, for example, Davis had introduced a resolution at a national meeting of extension directors calling for the take-over of the Soil Conservation Service. Only one other extension director supported this measure. Furthermore, on June 25, 1946, Davis had appeared before a congressional committee to lobby for the take-over of the Soil Conservation Service. When Congressman Flannagan asked him who he represented, Davis replied that the president of the American Farm Bureau Federation had asked him to appear. Flannagan questioned how a public employee could represent a private organization. Finally, the report charged that the service had not cooperated with the Farm Home Administration.
Third, the report charged that the Extension Service controlled the Farm Bureau: they picked the president; delegates to the state Farm Bureau convention were selected at county extension offices; and Davis constantly appeared at meetings of the Farm Bureau resolutions committee.
Fourth, the Extension Service constantly engaged in political activity. A good example came in 1945, with the use of extension personnel and funds to lobby against an income tax amendment that was submitted to popular vote. According to the report, only one farmer out of twenty would have benefitted from the position taken by the Extension Service. This had a detrimental effect upon the relationship between API and advocates of public education.
A number of supporting documents were appended to the report. In a letter dated February 18, F.G. Compton of the Soil Conservation Service complained that Davis constantly had avoided efforts for the two groups to meet for promotion of harmonious relations. Letters critical of the Extension Service were addressed to Governor Folsom by A.R. Meadows, state superintendent of education, J.C. Cannon, supervisor of agricultural education, and R.E. Cammack, director of vocational education.
March 17. The board discussed the problem regarding the Extension Service raised at the previous meeting. Davis appeared and denied the charges leveled against the Extension Service in the previous meeting. The board passed a resolution commending Davis for his work as director and James L. Lawson for his work as assistant director, but also condemned the political activities of the Extension Service.
May 5. The board gathered for an "informal" meeting. Among the items discussed were the University of Alabama's position regarding API's legislative appropriation.
July 28. The executive committee met because President Duncan had died two days earlier. Ralph Brown Draughon was named secretary and executive officer of the board until the full board could meet.
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