1950 Honorary Life Member Selections

EARLE V. HARDENBURG (1889 – 1950)

Dr. Earle V. Hardenburg, Professor of Vegetable Crops at Cornell University, was elected an honorary life member of the Potato Association of America at its annual meeting in Memphis on December 2, 1950. After having served the potato industry of America so well for so many years this is an honor he justly deserved. The Association was fortunate indeed to have him as one of its active members of such long standing. Dr. Hardenburg, was born in Brocton, N. Y. and graduated from Cornell University in 1912. His Master of Science and Doctorate degrees were also conferred by Cornell University at which place he remained conducting research and teaching in the Department o{ Agronomy and later in the Department of Vegetable Crops. During this period he studied many phases of the potato industry and published numerous papers and bulletins on the project of potatoes. He was especially well known for his work with and knowledge of varieties, seed handling and various cultural studies.

To the growers of New York State he probably is best known for his many years of productive and instructive work on extension. He was especially outstanding in his appreciation of the growers’ problems and his excellent, thorough and understanding manner of clarifying the solution of these problems for the grower. Several generations of students at Cornell University obtained their formal training with potato problems in the course taught by Dr. Hardenburg.

He was active for many years in the Potato Association of America and presented numerous papers at the annual meetings. He was President of the Association in 1921, treasurer in 1927 and also served as associate editor for a time.

He has written an authoritative book on “Bean Culture”, and although he was not in good health, during that period he completed his excellent work on “Potato Production” in 1949. It is with great sorrow and regret that I did not return to Ithaca from the Memphis meetings in time to notify Dr. Hardenburg of the action taken by the members of the Association at its annual meeting for he passed away at his home on the evening of December 4, 1950. Members of the Potato Association of America regret deeply that his kindly help and services and his association with us had to be terminated at this time.


Mr. Andrew Robbie now residing at Cavalier, North Dakota, was born in Scotland, September 6, 1868. He came to this country in 1887 and spent the next year doing contract work in the construction of the Great Northern Railway westward. After a short time he entered the flour milling business at Cavalier. In 1913 he became interested in the benefits farmers could get by including potatoes in their rotations. He built a potato warehouse that year to facilitate such efforts. In 1916 he actively started farming, particularly the growing of potatoes. In 1920 he started to grow certified seed potatoes and has been growing them entlmsiastically ever since. During all these years he has never spared any effort or expense in the production of good crops of high classed seed. He has been a leader in the adoption of any new practices which would accomplish the best results. Never has he refused to assist with money and effort of any experimental project. Not only has he carefully selected and guarded his foundation seed sources but has been a leader in experimentation in the use of fertilizers, sprays and vine killers. As a result he has been outstanding in both yield and quality of seed stocks. Although Mr. Robbie has been growing from 300 to 500 acres with yields varying from 300 to 500 bushels per acre, he has often run short of seed to:supply his faithful customers throughout the country.

He was also a leader in the washing and shipping of high classed table stock. His “Cavalier” brand very often tops the table market. Although Mr. Robbie is approaching 83 years of age he is still a progressive and enthusiastic seed potato grower! His many friends will be delighted to learn that he has been honored with a life membership to the Potato Association of America.