DR ĐORĐE RADIĆ (1839 – 1922) – AGRICULTURAL EDUCATOR AND SCIENTIST
By His Pen and Work the Greatest Among Them All
23 September – 17 October 2020
Exhibition authors: Dragan Drašković and Olivera Ćosović
Organizers: Union of Engineers and Technicians of Serbia and SASA Board for Rural Issues
Dr Đorđe Radić (1839-1922), agricultural educator and scientist, the first doctor of agricultural sciences in our country and an honorary member of the Serbian Royal Academy.
He was the first Serb who managed to defend his PhD thesis in agriculture at the University of Vienna. The name of Đorđe Radić became renowned and indispensable to Serbia, leading to Prince Mihailo Obrenović inviting and hiring him, the first time being in 1864.
With the founding of the Society for Field Economy in 1869, Dr Đorđe Radić arrived in Serbia and it was then that a new period of his life and work began. The education he received during his schooling, as well as as the practical knowledge acquired by touring and research of the agricultural achievements of most European countries (from 1862-1869 he visited Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Belgium) was applied to cultivation and progress of a Serbian peasant.
His works, over 40 published books and more than 500 published articles, as well as the editorship at journals Seljak, Težak, Domaćin, Cvetarstvo, and membership of 67 agricultural and cultural societies (three of which are American), speak volumes on Dr Đorđe Radić’s significance and contribution in laying the foundation for Serbian agriculture.
His numerous scientific achievements include corn hybridization which he had commenced before it was carried out in the USA, production of various types of corn and potato, along with novel vegetable kinds. He is credited with producing the first cotton in Hungary, introducing a nobler breed of cattle and performing crossbreeding. He experimented with silkworm breeding and owing to him novel devices and tools for those times were obtained – an iron plough and a winch powered threshing machine. He worked on establishing agricultural schools in Požarevac, Danilovgrad and Kraljevo, also taking on duties of the secretary of the Serbian Agricultural Society and cooperating with relevant notables of agriculture in Europe and the world.
In addition to this, Dr Đorđe Radić was a full member of the Serbian Learned Society and an honorary member of the Serbian Royal Academy.