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CHAPTER XXV.

GEORGIA.

SITUATION AND BOUNDARIES.—This state is situated between 30° 42' and 35° north latitude, and between 4° and 99 of west longitude, from Washington. It is bounded on the north by Tennessee, south by Florida, east by South Carolina and the Atlantic Ocean, and west by the Alibama territory. Its length, from north to south, is 290 miles; its greatest breadth about 250. Area about 62,000 square miles.

Aspect of the Country, and Nature of the Soil.From the sea-coast to the distance of more than a hun. dred miles, the country is a level plain, the soil a sandy loam, and covered with pine, except in the morasses and places occasionally inundated by the overflowing of the rivers, where it is rich, and favourable to the growth of most agricultural productions, particularly rice. Beyond this plain the surface rises into pleasant waving hills, which stretch backwards till they unite with the chain of Apalachian mountains. Cunawhee mountain, in Franklin county, about sixty miles from the northern boundary, is the southern extremity of the blue ridge, and is elevated 1500 feet above the level of the sea. The undulating hilly tract, which extends about 100 miles in breadth, is one of the finest in the United States, especially on the river Savannah and its western and north-western branches, the soil consisting of a deep black loam, from twelve to twenty inches deep, apparently formed from the decomposition of vegetables, with a reddish brown loam, four or five feet deep underneath, both reposing on a bed of clay or rock. From Darien to St Mary's, a distance of eighty-five miles, the surface is flat and sandy, producing no other trees than the pine and palmetto, interspersed with marshes which are covered with pines, cedars, and cypresses. The soil of the pine lands, or pine barrens, is a mixture of sand and loam, from eight to twenty inches in depth, which reposes on a stratum of clay. *

* In honour of George II. it received this name in 1732. Before this period it was included in the country called Florida by he French and Spaniards, and by the English Virginie.

In the upper country four kinds of soil are distinguished. The first, extending along rivers and creeks, is a rich blackish mould, with a small portion of sand. The second, called Mulatto land, is of the nature of clay, of a reddish yellow colour, and bears good crops, if the season be neither very dry nor very wet. The third quality is a grey land, consisting of a greyish mould, mixed with sand, on a clayey bed; and is less productive than the former, though not so liable to injury from rain and drought. The fourth quality of soil is the barren, already described. A re

• Sibbald's Notes on the Pine Lands of Georgia, &c.

markable bed of petrified shells extends across the state, from the Savannah to the Oconee river, nearly parallel with the sea-coast.

The Okefenoke swamp, situated towards the south, near the head of St Mary's river, is about sixty miles in length, from east to west, and forty in breadth. In the rainy season the greater part of it is covered with water, and appears like an inland sea.

Between Flint and Santilla rivers there is another swamp, called Cypress Swamp. The lands lately purchased from the Creek Indians include a great variety of soil, some of them being poor and sandy, and others very rich. The higher lands, approaching the Tennessee river, are more healthy than the others.

Islands.-A number of islands stretch along the coast, the soil of which, composed of a blackish mould,

fruitful. The most considerable, commencing with the most northerly, are Tybee, Wassau, St Helen's, St Catherine, Sapelo, St Simon, Jekyl, Cumberland, and Amelia. The water between these islands and the coast is sufficiently deep for the navigation of vessels of a hundred tons.

Temperature. The climate, in general, is somewhat warmer than that of South Carolina. All the flat country is moist and unhealthy. The effluvia of rice swamps and stagnant waters are extremely injurious to health, during the autumn; but the bilious fever, which has almost annually prevailed in the vicinity of the metropolis, has been more owing to this kind of culture than to the nature of the soil and clic mate. The spring is commonly rainy ; the summer is

is very

inconstant, and subject to storms of thunder and lightning. The winter is considered the most pleasant season of the year. The hilly parts, at the distance of 200 miles from the sea, are found to be very agreeable, and favourable to health. The winter is there colder; snow sometimes falls to the depth of five or six inches. Near the coast snow is very uncommon; though sometimes a considerable degree of cold has prevailed. On the 5th of February 1814, the soil of Wilmington island, near Savannah, was so frozen, that the labourer could not penetrate it with his hoe. On the 21st of the same month the weather became 80 warm, that the fruit trees put forth their buds. The range of the thermometer, during winter, is from 40° to 60°; from the 1st of June to the 1st of September it fluctuates between 76° and 90°; but in the hilly parts the temperature is much lower. Mr Ellis, * in 1757, observed the thermometer at 102°, in the shade of his piazza, at Savannah. It remained some days at 98°, and in the night did not fall below 89°. Within the last thirty years there have been but few instances in which the mercury has risen above 96° in the shade. The only instance of an earthquake, known to have occurred in this state, was in January 1811, when several shocks were felt, but did little injury.

Rivers. The interior of this state is intersected in every direction by navigable rivers. The Savannah, which forms the boundary between Georgia and South

* Fellow of the Royal Society, and governor of this province.

Carolina, is navigable for large vessels to Savannah, and for boats of 100 feet keel, carrying from 500 to 600 bales of cotton, (averaging 350 pounds each,) as far as Augusta. This river descends from the western mountains of the state, and receives in its long course a great number of streams, of which the principal from the west are the Broad river, Little river, and Briar creek. The Ogechee river rises in Green county, near the Apalachian mountains, passes by Louisville, the former seat of the government, and, running a course of 200 miles nearly parallel with the Savan. nah, empties itself into the sea fifteen miles south-west of the latter. The Alatamaha river rises in the Cherokee mountains, winds through the hilly county, (an extent of 250 miles,) and, in its course through the plains to the Atlantic, receives a number of considerable streams, of which the largest is the Oakmulgee. It is navigable for large vessels to Darien. The Chatahouchy, or Apalachicola river, rises near the source of the Savannah river, and in its course to the Gulf of Mexico, forms the western, or Florida line of boundary, for the distance of 125 miles. Flint river, one of its branches, is 200 miles in length, 300 yards in breadth, and from 12 to 15 feet in depth. St Mary's river rises in the Great Okefenoke morass, and, in its course to the sea, of 150 miles, it forms a part of the boundary between the United States and East Florida. From its mouth between Amelia and Cum. berland islands, to the distance of thirty miles, the channel is so narrow, that it scarcely admits the passage of a sea vessel, though deep enough for a ship of

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