Here is an item that the Ag Heritage Museum has had for a while but just recently discovered it in workshop. At first glance, you may notice how unique the shape of the head looks. After doing some brief research on the internet, we really couldn’t find another like it. The best identification would be a mortar hoe because the perforated blade allows the mixture to flow through the blade for easy mixing.
After dusting it off and looking a little more closely at the handle we noticed this etching in the handle saying: “D.A.C .” This we believe to stand for Dakota Agricultural College. This was the name of South Dakota State University from the University’s founding in 1881 until it was renamed to South Dakota State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts in 1904. Following the “D.A.C.” inscription on the handle, we believe it says the Horticulture Department. This department was founded in 1895 when N. E. Hansen (namesake of Hansen Hall) joined the D.A.C. faculty and started Horticultural instruction. So very likely, this simple garden hoe could be over 130 years old!