Date of Award

May 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



Committee Member

Jorge Garcia

Committee Member

Robert Fleck

Committee Member

Scott Templeton


This paper estimates the effects of college attendance from 1870 to 1940 on productivity in the manufacturing and agricultural sectors. I use data from the Records of the Office of Education, Census of Manufacturers, and Census of Agriculture from 1870 to 1940 to analyze trends in college attendance and productivity in the manufacturing and agricultural sectors. I find that every one student increase in the average number of students enrolled in a university in a county over the previous decade increases agricultural output per acre by $.01 and manufacturing output per employee by $2.13.



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