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UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA
BOARD OF EDITORS
WILLIAM R. APPLEBY
JAMES T. GEROULD
JAMES B. MINER
WILLIAM A. SCHAPER
These publications contain the results of research work from various departments of the University and are offered for exchange with universities, scientific societies, and other institutions. Papers will be published as separate monographs numbered in several series. There is no stated interval of publication. Application for any of these publications should be made to the University Librarian.
STUDIES IN CHEMISTRY 1. FRANKFORTER AND FRARY, Equilibria in Systems containing Alcohol, Salts, and Water. December, 1912.
2. FRANKFORTER AND KRITCHEVSKY, A New Phase of Catalysis. In press.
STUDIES IN ECONOMICS 1. THOMPSON AND WARBER, A Social and Economic Survey of a Rural Township in Southern Minnesota. April, 1913.
2. EDWARD VAN DYKE ROBINSON, The Development of Industries in the State of Minnesota. In press.
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SERIES 1. Publications by Members of the University Faculties. In press.
STUDIES IN HISTORY 1. WALLACE NOTESTEIN, Sources for the Parliament of 1629. In preparation.
STUDIES IN PUBLIC HEALTH 1. HERBERT G. LAMPSON, A Study on the Spread of Tuberculosis in Families. In press.
When a merchant reaches the end of his fiscal year and desires to learn the results of his work, he proceeds to take an inventory of the stock on hand. He knows that for any particular part of the business it is impossible to measure income against outlay and thus ascertain its net showing, without first taking into account the inventory feature.
Similarly, as we turn to rural-life problems and consider either the individual business unit on the farm or the community interest as a whole, we are called upon to follow simple business rules in order to be able to interpret the kind of development that takes place. The farmer must keep separate accounts with each source of income or outlay on the farm. He must also take periodic inventories for each of the profit and loss accounts before their significance is made apparent.
In the same way, a knowledge of community development requires the use of accounts and inventories. These may be illustrated in the increasing attention devoted to statistical compilation through various governmental agencies as well as through the efforts of voluntary organizations. Perhaps no better example is afforded of large-scale community inventories than those embodied in the reports of the federal census. Salient features pertaining to population, agriculture, manufacturing, and mining are here enumerated, as disclosed at ten-year intervals, furnishing an essential basis for a general interpretation of the direction of national development.
Where work of such magnitude is attempted, the number of items for which information is secured must necessarily be somewhat limited. Even with the much-enlarged scope of inquiry carried on by the compilers of the latest census report, there still remains a vast amount of material as yet uncovered and regarding which the public must needs remain ignorant.
To supplement the general surveys of state- or nation-wide scope, it is important, therefore, that typical communities be subjected to more intensive study. Only by such a method can the social, economic, political, educational, and religious activities be compared and related to the larger community life of which they are a part.
Information of this kind is not secured with sufficient accuracy by the method of cursory observation. Experience has shown that many of the commonplace generalizations popularly accepted as a matter of course are not at all founded on facts, but are carried over from other times or conditions and retained through the sheer inertia of habitual modes of thinking. With the large amount of attention given to the problem of rural better