Scrub Stock

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Mon Nov 16 04:28:09 UTC 2009

Victor quotes, from 1913:

"... Producers of _opium dope_ ..."

Opium was once considered to be a member of a set named "dope"?
Instead of actually being itself "dope"? I have an unfortunately very
vague memory of having heard the use of the word, "dope," to name a
substance, otherwise unidentifiable by me, used by "po' folk" in East
Texas to pacify babies. Wonder whether there is / was a connection
between the "dope" of which opium is one kind and the kind of "dope"
once so commonly used to pacify colic-y babies that there was no need
to be more specific about its name.


On Sat, Apr 25, 2009 at 12:13 AM, Victor <aardvark66 at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Victor <aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      Re: Scrub Stock
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> I now had a chance to review some searches on "scrub stock". So here's
> the follow up.
> First up was the "news" search. The regular news search turns up either
> references to the TPM post or copies of it, or multiple reprints of
> Buchanan's own piece. Ho-hum.
> But Google now has the option for searching older archives (even if you
> can't see the entire publication). Someone with access to ProQuest
> Archives can check the specifics, but I can outline the results here.
> The general use of "scrub stock" appears to be quite common in the
> period 1850-1930 in reference to cattle, horses, sheep--at least, as far
> as these limited search patterns show. Some are just generic references
> to the runt, as I identified initially, but others are a bit more
> interesting. Basically, "scrub stock" refers to animals that are not
> "pure-bred". This language appears in US, Canadian and Australian
> publications that I came across. In many cases, the publications suggest
> that owning pure-bred stock is preferable and more profitable than
> owning "scrub stock". Some suggest that "scrub stock" is due to poor
> farm management. Others use the term to describe "local" breeds, as
> opposed to the more prominent breeds. A interesting variant can be found
> at the Cornell University Library "Making of America" site, which
> reproduces a copy of Living Age, Vol. 55, #702 (November 7, 1857). The
> piece in question appears on p. 377 and is titled Blood Stock.
> [The URL is far too long and I won't dare to reproduce it without tinyurl.]
>  >> A stock raiser of Fayette county, Ky., lost eight colts one season,
> *four of them thorough-breds, and four of them common scrub stock.* He
> amputated the legs of all of them, and boiled off the flesh, cleaning
> the bones thoroughly, to learn, by examination, what difference, in
> respect of bone, there was between pure-blooded and common ones. On
> taking the bones of the thorough-breds, and holding them up to the
> light, he noticed that they were almost transparent, as much so as white
> corn. He tried the same experiment with the bones of inferior stock.
> They were opaque, and transmitted light no more than buffalo horn. He
> then tested the bones by weight, and found the thorough-bred by far the
> heavier, showing their superior substance and solidity. They were had
> and dense as ivory.--*Nashville Union, October 1*
> I reproduced the entire piece because it makes it obvious how this usage
> lent itself to eugenics. On one hand, you got pure-bloods, on the
> other--scrub stock. Simple!
> Another piece from Cornell Library is equally illuminating. The excerpt
> is from p. 513 of Wheat Fields of the Columbia by Ernest Ingersoll
> (Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Vol. 69, #412, September 1884, p. 510).
>  >>These Indian ponies, and *the half-breed scrub stock* raised by the
> white men as well, go by the name of "Kyuses"--derived from a tribe of
> Indians in northern California with whom the pioneers first began to
> trade in horseflesh. They are tough, active, often speedy little brutes,
> but as full of tricks and deviltry as their homely skins will hold.
> Now, for the topic of the day, so to speak. There are two pieces in the
> NYT. One is the aforementioned January 19, 1913, column on Moral
> Measurement (promoting eugenics).
> The other is a July 17, 1909, letter to the editor by F.L. Orton:
>  >>Until it is shown more conclusively than it has ever been shown in
> the past that the 75 per cent. of individuals belonging to what may be
> called the lower class of this or any other country has produced even a
> bare majority of the men worthy of mention in a volume devoted to such
> individuals, there will be little occasion for discussion of the
> relationship between poverty and genius. So far as can be observed by
> rather close student of the authoritative compilations relating to
> eminent men, the very small percentage of educated, thinking men and
> women have produced many time their proper proportion of distinguished
> individuals. ...
>  >> ... The sooner the world comes to appreciate the simple and
> demonstrable fact that breeding is just as effective in human as in
> equine, bovine, or canine life, the better for generations yet to come.
> The Father of His Country didn't spring from "scrub" stock, but from the
> best blood of the country and the young man born of intelligent and
> successful parents will find if he investigates that he stands several
> chances of succeeding, if not several hundred, to one of the youth whose
> parent showed no capacity beyond the making of a bare living.
> The other pieces are from ProQuest, so I don't have access:
> The Lancer in LATimes, Nov. 29, 1927:
> "You can t breed from scrub stock In people any more than cattle."
> The Lancer in LATimes Mar. 17, 1927:
> "In other words. the race is being bred out by scrub stock."
> Pen Points in LATimes Sep. 23, 1929:
> "Americanism: Killing scrub stock to Improve the breed; permitting the
> marriage of half-wits whose progeny will be supported by the taxpayers."
> Now, on to books.
> Character Building and Reading, by Jean Morris Ellis, 1911, p. 126
>  >>Is it too much to hope that some day it will be considered quite as
> laudable to breed and raise human beings to the same degree of
> perfection, and quite as disgraceful to raise a family of mental, moral
> or physical defectives, as to raise "scrub stock?"
> Next to the ground, by Martha McCulloch-Williams, 1902, p. 323
>  >>Scrub stock is a colloquialism for ordinary native blood. White Oaks
> scrub stock was not the least scrubby, although it lacked
> uniformity--had red coats, or black, or white, or gay red-and-white
> blotched, was long-horned, short-horned, even entirely hornless.
> Race and Population Problems, by Hannibal Gerald Duncan, 1929, p. 347
> (from Univ of Cal)
>  >>People with no sense worthy of the name, defective stock, over 5
> million; people with little sense, scrub stock, 20 million. These are
> the people who multiply at from one and a half to twice the rate of the
> superior classes of our ...
> The American Antiquarian and Oriental Journal, April-June 1913, pp. 84-85
> N. Kolkin, At the Beginning of the Archaic Period (pp. 82-86)
>  >>This tribe became Avianized and its name is found from Cabalia
> northward. There is reason to believe that it emigrated from western
> Asia Minor to eastern Armenia, Singara (Mesopotamia), and Shinar. It
> was, no doubt, driven from the latter position by Kushites. That the Sin
> tribe did not belong to common scrub stock seems plain, for it was
> empire-building and producers of opium dope, guided by the Avian element
> in its make-up. ...
>  >>The Us element, where it had come in, also mixed with Ats, froming
> the Est or, of the more humble type, the Dus tribe. This was scrub
> stock, except that Ests (Tse) was not considered so among the Sins. It
> was the nucleus of the Sin tribe (Chinese tse, ancestor), and the Greeks
> called Chinese Sinestae. Among the rulers or slave holders in Asia
> Minor, however, the Ests or Dus were scrubs or only common stock.
>    VS-)
> Victor wrote:
>> Zachary Roth and the rest of TPM bloggers have taken Pat Buchanan to
>> task over a comment that includes the phrase "scrub stock".
>> ...
>> I have not done any significant searching on "scrub stock" yet, but I
>> was planning on doing it later tonight. I am sure others will have
>> something interesting to contribute on this subject.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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