This department was created by the biologist Melchior Treub, who had in the 1880s and 1890s turned the Botanical Gardens into a world-famous centre of tropical biology, independent of scientific or political power in the Netherlands.
Zeijlstra's 1959 biography of Melchior Treub, the emphasis has been on celebrating (mostly Dutch) scientists who, much like their European counterparts, advanced scientific knowledge of the land in which they worked.
But unlike his predecessor and mentor Melchior Treub, who had directed the Gardens from 1880 to 1909, and who had pioneered a melding of pure and applied natural knowledge, Koningsberger set out to define pure science as a colonial asset separate from the usefulness of science to agriculture.
(10) For recent research about Melchior Treub and the creation of the Department of Agriculture, refer to Eugene Cittadino, Nature as the laboratory: Darwinian plant ecology in the German Empire, 1880-1900 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990); H.W.
(11) That this was his intention is made clear in Melchior Treub, Over de taak en den werkkring van's lands plantentuin te Buitenzorg (Buitenzorg: 's Lands Plantentuin, 1899).
(13) Melchior Treub, 'Schematisch nota over de oprichting een agricultuur departement in Nederlandsch Indie', 30 Jan.
Zeijlstra, Melchior Treub: Pioneer of a new era in the history of the Malay archipelago (Amsterdam: KIT, 1959).
Melchior Treub, a renowned scientist and respected head of the Indies' world-famous Botanical Gardens, cited lack of innovation as the defining problem in Javanese culture that the technical assistance of his proposed Department of Agriculture could fix.
When Melchior Treub took leadership of the new Department of Agriculture in 1905, he took a socially conservative approach, favouring technologies that maintained the status quo in the social organization of farming, while still increasing yield.
12-4; Melchior Treub, Schematizsche nota over de oprichting van een agricultuur-departement in Nederlandsch-Indie (Buitenzorg: n.p., 1902); Treub, 'Beredeneerd overzicht der verrichtingen en bemoeiingen met het oog op de praktijk van land-, tuin, en boschbouw, veeteelt, visscherij en aanverwante aangelegenheden', Landbouw: Januari 1906-October 1909 (1910): 27-8.