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Fruit Varieties and Horticultural Digest
(J Fruit Var & Hort Digest)

American Pomological Society

Volume 13 Number 2 Article 1 Pages: 18-20
Year 1958 Month 12
Title: Niels Ebbesen Hansen—Pioneer Fruit Breeder
Author: A.F. Yeager
Neils Ebbesen Hansen, one of our greatest plant explorers and fruit breeders, wasbom January 4th, 1866, on a farm near Ribe, Denmark. His parents brought him to New York at the age of seven. In 1876, the family moved to Des Moines, Iowa. At the age of seventeen he entered Iowa State College from which he graduated with a B.S. in horticulture, in 1887. This was the same year in which Congress passed the Hatch Act, providing funds for Experiment Stations in every state. After graduation, he worked for a time in a large grape nursery. He was induced to return to Iowa State by the noted horticulturist, Professor Budd. He was awarded his Master of Science degree in 1895. South Dakota was then looking for a man to build its Horticultural Department at Brookings, and selected Hansen for the job. Here at South Dakota State, he became one of the best known horticulturists in the world. For 55 years, until his death, October 5, 1950, his influence was felt not only in the Great Plains, but in every continent.

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