Celebrating 150 Years of Florida's Land-Grant University!

What made these things possible?

  • Assistance providing America with the safest and most abundant food supply
  • Responsible for great strides in agricultural production
  • Helped impoverished countries establish agricultural universities and educational programs
  • Provided access to higher education for people from all walks of life

The first step in making all of these accomplishments possible can be traced back to July 2, 1862, when President Abraham Lincoln signed the Morrill Act into law.   The Morrill Act created the land-grant university system which would teach not only traditional subjects but also provide an education in agricultural science, military tactics, and engineering.  In the field of agriculture and natural resources, the land-grant system paved the way for agricultural experiment stations and cooperative Extension.

The Hatch Act of 1887 was passed to establish agricultural experiment stations in connection with the colleges provided by the land grant system.  It mandated that this research be related to and beneficial for the U.S. agricultural industry.  Moving forward to 1914, The Smith-Lever Act established today’s Agricultural Experiment Stations and the Extension Service. 

In 2012, the University of Florida takes pride in celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Morrill Act!