Page images
PDF
EPUB

Geographical Range of the Wheat Region-Crops.

387

much wheat as they consumed, and the principal districts of the United large quantities of grain and flour were States in which this important grain is sent to the same place.

produced in the greatest abundance, and Prior to the revolution the primitive forms a leading article of commerce, soils of New York, New-Jersey, and of embrace the states of New York, NewNew-England, appear not to have re- Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Marywarded the cultivation of this grain land, Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, Michimuch, if any, beyond the wants of the gan, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Wisconinhabitants. Considerable quantities sin, and Iowa. The chief varieties culwere raised on the Hudson, and in some tivated in the Northern and Eastern parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, States are the white flint, tea, Liberian, which were exported to the West Indies bald, Black sea, and the Italian spring and New England, and to Great Britain, wheat. In the Middle and Western France, Portugal and Spain, in years of States, the Mediterranean, the Virginia scarcity, previous to 1823.

white May, the blue stem, the Indiana, In 1776, there was entailed upon this the Kentucky white bearded, the old country an enduring calamity, in conse- red chaff, and the Talavera. The yield quence of the introduction of the Hes- varies from ten to forty bushels, and upsian or wheat fly, which was supposed wards, per acre, weighing per bushel to have been brought from Germany in from fifty-eight to sixty-seven pounds. some straw, employed in the debark- It appears that on the whole crop of ation of Howe's troops on the west end the United States, there was a gain of Long Island. From that point the during the ten years of 15,645,378 insect gradually spread in various direc- bushels. The crop of New England detions, at the rate of twenty or thirty creased from 2,014,000 to 1,078,000 miles a year, and the wheat of the en- bushels, exhibiting a decline of 936,000 tire regions east of the Alleghanies is bushels, and indicating the attention of now more or less infested with the farmers has been much withdrawn from larva, as well as in large portions of the culture of wheat. Grouping the the states bordering on the Ohio and states, from the Hudson to the Potomac, Mississippi, and on the great lakes ; including the District of Columbia, it apand so great have been the ravages of pears that they produced in 1849, 35,085,these insects, that the cultivation of this 000 bushels, against 29,936,000 in 1839. grain has in many places been aban- In Virginia, there was an increase of doned.

1,123,000 bushels. These states embrace The geographical range of the wheat the oldest wheat-growing region of the region in the Eastern Continent and country, and that in which the soil and Australia, lies principally between the climate seem to be adapted to promote 30th and 60th parallels of north latitude, the permanert culture of the grain. The and between the 30th and 40th degrees increase of production in ten years bas south, being chiefly confined to France, been 6,272,000 bushels, equal to 15.6 Spain, Portugal, Italy, Sicily, Greece, per cent. The area of tilled land in these Turkey, Russia, Denmark, Norway, states is 36,000,000 acres, only thirty per Sweden, Poland, Prussia, Netherlands, cent. of the whole amount returned ; Belgium, Great Britain, Ireland, North- while the proportion of wheat produced ern and Southern Africa, Tartary, India, is forty-six per cent. In North Carolina China, Australia, Van Dieman's Land, there has been an increase of 170,000 and Japan. Along the Atlantic portions bushels; but in the Southern States, of the Western Continent it embraces generally, there was a considerable dethe tract lying between the 30th and crease. Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and 50th parallels, and in the country west. Wisconsin, contributed to the general ward of the Rocky Mountains one or aggregate, under the sixth census, only two more degrees further north. Along 9,800,000 bushels; under the last, they the west coast of South America, as are shown to have produced upwards of as well as in situations within the Torrid 25,000,000 bushels, an amount equal to Zone, sufficiently elevated above the the whole increase in the United States level of the sea, and properly irrigated for the period. by natural or artificial means, abundant When we see the growth of wheat crops are often produced.

keeping up with the progress of popuVOL, XIV.

lation in the oldest states of the union, awarded by the Royal Commissioners, we need have no apprehension of decline and recently transmitted to Mr. Bell, by in the cultivation of this important crop. the President of the United States, the

The amount of flour exported from chairman of the Executive Committee New Jersey, in 1751, was 6,424 barrels. in the United States. The red Medi. From Philadelphia, in 1752, 125,960 terranean wheat, exhibited from the barrels, besides 86,500 bushels of wheat; United States, attracted much attention. in 1767, 198,816 barrels, besides 367,500 The wheat from South Australia was bushels of wheat; in 1771, 252,744 bar- probably superior to any exhibited, wbile rels. From Savannah, in 1771, 7,200 much from our own country fell but pounds. From Virginia, for some years little behind, and was unquestionably annually, preceding the revolution, 800,- next in quality. 000 bushels of wheat. The total exports Rye - This grain is supposed to be a of flour from the United States, in 1791, native of the Caspian Caucasian desert, were 619,681 barrels, besides 1,018,339 and has been cultivated in the north of bushels of wheat; in 1800, 653,052 bar- Europe and Asia from time immemorial, rels, besides 26,853 bushels of wheat; in where it constitutes an important article 1810, 798,431 barrels, besides 325,924 of human subsistence, being generally bushels of wheat; in 1820-21, 1,056,119 mixed with barley or wheat. Its introbarrels, besides 25.821 bushels of wheat; duction into western Europe is comparain 1830-31, 1,806,529 barrels, besides tively of recent date, as no mention is 408,910 bushels of wheat; in 1840-41, made of it in the Oitus Sanitatis, pub1,515,817 barrels, besides 868,585 bushels lished at Augsburg in 1485, which treats of wheat ; in 1845-46, 2,289,476 barrels, at length of barley, millet, oats and besides 1.613,795 bushels of wheat; in wheat. 1846.47, 4,382,496 barrels, besides 4,399,- Rye was cultivated in the North 951 bushels of wheat ; in 1850-51, 2,202,- American colonies soon after their settle335 barrels, besides 1,026,725 bushels of ment by the English. Gorges speaks of wheat.

it as growing in Nova Scotia in 1622 as According to the census of 1840, the well as of barley and wheat. Plantagewheat crop of the United States was net enumerates it among the produc84,823,272 bushels; in 1849, according tions of North Virginia (New England) to the census of 1850, 100,503,899 in 1648, and alludes to the mixing of it bushels, although in some of the largest with maize in the formation of bread. wheat-growing states, the crops of 1849 It was also cultivated in South Virginia, fell far below the average.

by Sir William Berkley, previous to that In the state of Ohio, especially, there year. was great deficiency, and was made Geographically, rye and barley assoapparent by the returns of the wheat ciate with one another and grow upon crop for the ensuing year-made in pur- soils the most analogous, and in situa. suance of an act of the legislature of tions alike exposed, It is cultivated for that state. From the almost universal bread in northern Asia, and all over the returns of "short-crop" by the marshals continent of Europe, particularly in Rusin that state, in 1849, which fell below sia, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Gerthat of 1839 two millions of bushels, and many and Holland, in the latter of which the ascertained crop of 1850, we are fully it is much employed in the manufacture satisfied that the average wheat crop of of gin. It is also grown to some extent Ohio would appear thirty per cent in England, Scotland and Wales. In greater than shown by the census re- this country it is principally restricted to turns. The same causes which operated the middle and eastern states, but its to diminish the wheat crop of Ohio, culture is giving place to more profitable were not without their effects upon that crops. of other states, bordering on the upperThe three leading varieties cultivated portion of the valley of the Mississippi. in the United States, are the spring,

In the London exhibition, very little winter and southern, the latter differing wheat was exhibited equal to that from from the others only from dissimilarity the United States, especially that from of climate. The yield varies from 10 to Genesee county, in the State of New- 30 or more bushels per acre, weighing York-a soft, white variety, to the ex. from 48 to 56 pounds to the bushel. hibiter of which a prize medal was The production of rye has decreased

Indian CornVarietiesCultivation, Increase of Production.

[ocr errors]

4,457,000 bushels in the aggregate, but the productions of the country, menin New-York it is greater than in 1840 tioned by Nearchus, the commander of by about forty per cent. Pennsylvania, the fleet; neither is it noticed by Arian, which is the largest producer, has fallen Diodorus, Columella, nor any other anoff from 6,613,373 to 4,805,160 bushels. cient author; and even as late as 1491. Perhaps the general diminution in the the year before Columbus discovered quantity of this grain now produced may America, Juan di Cuba, in his “Ortus be accounted for by supposing a corres- Sanitatis," makes no mention of it. It ponding decline in the demand for dis. has never been found in any ancient tilling purposes, to which a large part of tumulus, sarcophagus, or pyramid; nor the crop is applied.

has it ever been represented in any anThis grain has never entered largely cient painting, sculpture, or work of art, into our foreign commerce, as the home except in America. But in this coun: consumption for a long period nearly try, according to Garcilaso de la Vega, kept pace with the supply. The amount one of the ancient Peruvian historians, exported from the United States in 1801, the palace gardens of the Incas in Perú was 392,276 bushels; in 1812, 82,705 were ornamented with maize, in gold bushels; in 1813, 140,136 bushels. In and silver, with all the grains, spikes, 1820-21 there were exported 23,523 bar- stalks, and leaves; and, in one instance, rels of rye flour; in 1830-31, 19,100 bar- in the garden of gold and silver," there rels; in 1840-41, 44,031 barrels; in was an entire corn-field, of considerable 1845–46, 38,530 barrels; in 1846–47, size, representing the maize in its exact 48,892 barrels; in 1850-51, 44,152 bar- and natural shapema proof no less of rels. During the year ending June 1, the wealth of the Incas, than their vene1850, there were consumed of rye, ration for this important grain. about 2,144,000 bushels in the manufac- In further proof of the American oriture of malt and spirituous liquors. gin, it may be stated that this plant is

According to the census returns of still found growing in a wild state, from 1840, the product of the country was the Rocky Mountains, in North Ameri18,645,567 bushels; in 1850, 14,188,637 ca, to the humid forests of Paraguay, bushels.

where, instead of having each grain MAIZE, OR INDIAN CORN.-Among the naked, as is always the case after long objects of culture in the United States, cultivation, it is completely covered maize, or Indian corn takes precedence with glumes, or husks. It is, furtherin the scale of crops, as it is best adapted more, a well authenticated fact, that to the soil and climate, and furnishes maize was found in a state of cultivation the largest amount of nutritive food. by the aboriginies in the island of Cuba, When due regard is paid to the selection on its discovery by Columbus, as well as of varieties, and cultivated in a proper in most other places in America, first soil, it may be accounted as a sure crop explored by Americans. in almost every portion of the habitable T he first successful attempt to cultiglobe, between the forty-fourth degree vate this grain in North America by the of north latitude and a corresponding English, occurred on James river, in parallel south. Besides its production in Virginia, in 1608. It was undertaken this country, its principal culture is by the colonists sent over by the London limited to Mexico, the West Indies, most company, who adopted the mode then of the States of South America, France, practised by the natives, which, with Spain, Portugal, Lombardy, and South- some modifications, has been pursued ern and Central Europe generally. It throughout this country ever since. The is also cultivated with success in north- yield, at that time, is represented to have ern, southern and western Africa, India, been from two hundred to more than one China, Japan, Australia, and the Sand- thousand fold. The same increase was wich Islands, the groups of the Azores, noted by the early settlers in Illinois. the Madeiras, the Canaries, and numer- The present yield, east of the Rocky ous other ocean isles.

Mountains, when judiciously cultivated, Although there has been much writ- varies from 20 to 135 bushels to an acre. ten on the eastern origin of this grain, it The varieties of Indian corn are very did not grow in that part of Asia watered numerous, exhibiting every grade of size, by the Indus, at the time of Alexander color and conformation, between the the Great's expedition, as it is not among “chubby reed” that grows on the shores of Lake Superior-the gigantic stalks of from Virginia, for several years precedthe Ohio Valley—the tiny ears, with ing the revolution, annually 600,000 flat, close, clinging grains, of Canada- bushels ; from Philadelphia, in 1765-66, the brilliant, rounded little pearl—the 60,205 bushels; in 1771, 259,441 bushels. bright red grains and white cob of the The total amount exported from this eight-rowed hæmalite—the swelling ears country in 1770, was 578,349 bushels ; of the big white and the yellow gourd in 1791, 2,064,936 bushels, 351,695 of seed of the South. From the flexibility which were Indian meal; in 1800, of this plant, it may be acclimatized, 2,032,435 bushels, 338,108 of which by gradual cultivation, from Texas to were in meal; in 1810, 1,140,960 bushMaine, or from Canada to Brazil; but its els, 86,744 of which were meal. In character, in either case, is somewhat 1820-21, there were exported 607,277 changed,' and often new varieties are bushels of corn, and 131,669 barrels the result. The blades of the plant are of Indian meal; in 1830–31, 571,312 of great value as food for stock, and is an bushels of corn, and 207,604 barrels of article but rarely estimated sufficiently, meal; in 1840-41, 535,727 bushels of when considering the agricultural pro- corn, and 232,284 barrels of meal; in ducts of the southern and southwest- 1845–46, 1,286,068 bushels of corn, and ern states especially.

298.790 barrels of meal; in 1846-47, The increase of production, from 1840 16,326,050 bushels of corn, and 948,060 to 1850, was 214,000,000 bushels, equal barrels of meal; in 1850-51, 3,426,811 to 56 per cent.

bushels of corn, and 203,622 barrels of The production of New England has meal. More than eleven millions of · advanced from 6,993,000 to 10,377,000 bushels of Indian corn were consumed bushels, showing an increase of 3,384,000 in 1850, in the manufacture of malt and bushels, nearly fifty per cent. New- spirituous liquors. York, New-Jersey, Pennsylvania, Dela- According to the census of 1840, the ware and Maryland, increased 20,812,- corn corp of the United States was 000 bushels more than fifty per cent. In 377,531,875 bushels; in 1850, 592,326,the production of this crop, no state has 612 bushels. retrograded. Ohio, which, in 1840, OC- OATS.—The oat, when considered in cupied the fourth place as a corn-produc- connection with the artificial grasses, ing state, now ranks as the first. Ken- and the nourishment and improvement tucky is second, Illinois third, Tennessee it affords to live stock may be regarded fourth. The orop of Illinois has increas- as one of the most important crops we ed from 2,000,000 to 5,500,000 bushels, produce. Its history is highly interestor at the rate of one hundred and sixty ing, from the circumstance that while per oent. in ten years.

in many portions of Europe it is formed Of the numerous varieties some are into meal, it forms an important aliment best adapted to the Southern States, for man; one sort at least has been culwhile others are better suited for the tivated from the days of Pliny, on acNorthern and Eastern. Those generally count of its fitness as an article of diet cultivated in the former are the Southern for the sick. The country of its origin big and small yellow, the Southern big is somewhat uncertain, though the most and small white flint, the yellow Peru- common variety is said to be indigenvian, and the Virginian white gourd seed. ous to the island of Juan Fernandez. In the more Northerly and Easterly Another oat, resembling the cultivated States, they cultivate the golden Sioux variety, is also found growing wild in or Northern yellow flint, the King Philip California. or eight-rowed yellow, the Canadian This plant was introduced into the early white, the Tuscarora, the white North American Colonies soon after their flour, and the Rhode Island white flint. settlement by the English. It was

The extended cultivation of this grain sown by Gosnold on the Elizabeth is chiefly confined to the Eastern, Mid- Islands in 1602; cultivated in Newdle and Western States, though much foundland in 1622 ; and in Virginia more successfully grown in the latter. by Berkley, prior to 1648. The amount exported from South Car- The oat is a hardy grain, and is suited olina, in 1748, was 39,308 bushels; from to climates too hot and too cold either for North Carolina, in 1753, 61,580 bushels ; wheat or rye. Indeed, its flexibility is from Georgia, in 1755, 600 bushels; so great, that it is cultivated with suc

Introduction of OatsAnnual Exports and Total Produce. 391

cess in Bengal, as low as latitude twen- pounds to the bushel. The Egyptian ty-five degrees north, but refuses to oat is cultivated south of Tennessee, yield profitable crops as we approach which, after being sown in autumn, and the equator. It flourishes remarkably fed off by stock in winter and spring, well when due regard is paid to the se- yields from ten to twenty bushels per lection of varieties, throughout the in- acre. In the manufacture of malt and habited parts of Europe, the northern spirituous liquors, oats enter but lightly, and central portions of Asia, Australia, and their consumption for this purpose Southern and Northern Africa, the cul- does not exceed 60,000 bushels annually tivated regions of nearly all North Ame- in the United States. rica, and a large portion of South Ame- The oat, like rye, never has entered rica.

much into our foreign commerce, as the In this country the growth of the oat domestic consumption has always been is confined principally to the Middle, nearly equal to the quantity produced. Western and Northern States. The va- The annual average exports for severieties cultivated are the common white, ral years preceding 1817, were 70,000 the black, the gray, the imperial, the bushels. Hopetown, the Polish, the Egyptian, By the census returns of 1840 it will and the potato oat. The yield of the be seen that the total produce of the common varieties varies from forty to United States was 123,071,341 bushels; ninety bushels and upwards, per acre, of 1850, 146,678,879 bushels. and weighing from twenty-five to fifty

ART, VIII.-COMMERCIAL GROWTH AND PROSPECTS OF

ST. LOUIS.
THE GREAT CITIES OF AMERICA.

No. III. In volume 13th of the Review the reader will find elaborate articles upon the Commercial Progress of New-Orleans and Cincinnati, with much interesting material in regard to St. Louis. We continued our references to the great cities of the Union by the introduction of Boston into our March number, vol. 14th, and will follow it up with a regular series of similar papers.

Our present subject will be St. Louis; and having hitherto, in the Review and the Industrial Resources, discussed its early history and advancement, we complete the subject to date from the claborate report, in pamphlet form, for 1852—3, made by A. B. Chambers, Esq., of the St. Louis Republican.)

St. Louis must at no distant day be. artisans elsewhere for the manufacture come important as a manufacturing city. of steam engines, and of every species The heaviest business in this department of machinery. A connection with Pilot will doubtless be in iron. The state Knob and the Iron Mountain by railboasts of her mountains of ore, and the road, will obviate at once the difficulty coal region is immediately at our doors. to an embarkation of the kind, by placWithin a few years past the articles ing the ore at the furnace cheaply and made of iron have multiplied beyond expeditiously, and thus bringing into any expectation, Railing, fencing for general use this great metal. Missouri agricultural uses, window sash, door- contains thus, within her own bosom, an fronts, columns, caps, telegraph wire, element of wealth that has not yet been water pipe, are a few only of the uses to brought into requisition, and which is which the article has lately been ap- destined at no distant day to give a strong plied; while speculation begins to whis- and vigorous pulsation to her growth in per about entire buildings being con- wealth. Besides this, we have lead and structed, and entire streets paved with it. copper ore in abundance, exhaustless, Our shops already compete with the best and second in quality to the yield of no

« PreviousContinue »