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assayer, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, have yielded: 1840 ounces of silver to the ton of ore; another, 1200, and the third, 1600 ounces. The agent of the company, not satisfied with this test, has sent an average sample of the ore to Dr. Hays, of Boston, the State Assayer of Massachusetts. Should he pronounce it argentiferous, containing only the lowest estimate of the Philadelphia assayer, then there can be no doubt, judging from the quantity of ore already raised, the known extent of the mine, and the ease and cheapness with which it is worked, that it is far the most valuable mine of any description in the United States.
The two north-western counties of the State of Illinois, form a part of the richest and most extensive lead region known in the scientific world.
During the year 1854, there were received in Chicago, by the Galena Railroad, 4,051,346 pounds of lead; and it further appears, from authentic statements, that the products of these lead mines shipped during the last five years, from Galena, were as follows:
1851.-474,115 pigs, equal to 33,188,050 lbs., of the value of $1,534,062 44. 1852.-408,628 1853.-425,814 66.
1854.-423,617 ، ، 1855.-430,365
Nothing can better show the wealth and importance of the mining region of the Upper Mississippi, than the above statement. The consequence is, that the city of Galena and surrounding country have increased in wealth and population very rapidly, of late years.
Arrangements are now being made for the construction of whitelead works, at Galena, and there is no other spot in the United States, where a manufactory of this kind would be as profitable.
A short time ago, a discovery of a rich layer of iron ore was made, about two miles distant from the little town of Moline, in Rock Island County. This layer is supposed to extend over a space of 75 acres. The veins of ore appear two or three inches below the surface of the earth, and they are eight or ten inches thick.
The annexed geological map will explain to the reader the great geological riches of the State, more fully than it can be done by words.
COMMERCE AND MANUFACTURES OF
IN comparing Chicago, as it was a few years since, with Chicago of to-day, we behold a change whose veritable existence we would be inclined to doubt, were it not a stern, indisputable fact. Rapid as is the customary development of places and things, in the United States, one will yet be forced to admit, that the growth of Chicago and her trade, stands without a parallel. Chicago, now hardly twenty years. old, whose port in 1831 was frequented by four small vessels, two brigs, and two schooners, then fully adequate to satisfy the commercial wants of Northeastern Illinois and Northwestern Indiana, together, in 1855 witnessed, beating in her harbor, 6610 vessels, of 1,608,845 tons burden, and in the same year exported more grain than any other commercial emporium throughout the world; Chicago, which in 1823 was but a wretched village of ten frame huts, and sixty inhabitants, in 1855 numbered 83,509 inhabitants, and in the same year dealt more largely in timber than the markets hitherto the most considerable in the world can boast of.
Thus, as far as regards the grain and lumber trade, Chicago has surpassed all rivals, and as far as regards the money market, has also already evinced that independence, which alone can form the safe and substantial basis of a far-reaching commerce. In spite of an obstinate bank dispute, and the diminution by several millions, of the bank capital of Chicago, in consequence of the redemption, in part, of the Georgia bank notes, till then circulating in Chicago, the capital concentrated in that city proved, nevertheless, fully adequate to all wants created by the increase of business, and the immense importation of grain.
There are many reasons why the position Chicago will assume a few years hence, will be even much more important than that which
she now occupies; one of the most essential of which is the opening of the direct line of water communication, between the city and Lake Superior. By the St. Mary River Canal, easy access is possible from Chicago to the inexhaustible iron and copper mines of Michigan; and by the Illinois Central Railroad, the illimitable coal beds of Southern Illinois are placed within her reach; and by these means she has secured for herself that degree of industrial development, which gives firm support and lasting warranty to trade. Already the surveyor's chain has designated the places in Chicago where the manufacture of iron wares will be carried on to such an extent, as continually to keep pace with the incessantly increasing demands of the immense north and south-west.
No sooner were the great copper mines at Lake Superior opened, than the steamers of the ship-owners of Chicago hastened closely to attach the interests of that important region to their city; only a short time has passed since, and already the wholesale dealers of Chicago count the people of those mining districts among their regular customers. The fruits of the bold, but sure policy of Chicago, are already visible to a larger degree on another field.
The immense tracts of land of Middle and Southern Illinois, then without any, either natural or artificial, means of communication, for years awaited purchasers in vain, notwithstanding the low price ($1 25) at which Congress sold each acre of the richest land, whose cultivation did not present the slightest difficulty. No sooner were the rails of the Illinois Central Railroad laid through the entire length of the State, from Galena to Cairo, than towns and villages sprung into existence along the track, as if by magic, and the granaries of Chicago were filled with the produce of thousands of fertile acres, then for the first time subjected to culture. At the same time that the quantity of the yield increased, its quality was improved. The general use of machine power, nowhere proved of greater advantage than on the vast plains of Illinois; the rapidly progressing intelligence of the Illinoisian farmers, which, far from being contented with having created agricultural societies in every county of the State, now already calls for the erection of an agricultural university, will account for the fact, that a great part of the grain sold as "Extra Genesee," may be
safely considered "Extra Illinois," disguised in some shape or an
In consequence of these, and many other improvements, among which we may notice the continuation of the Galena Railroad to Dubuque, of the Fox River Valley Railroad to Richmond, and of the Illinois and Wisconsin Railroad, to Woodstock, the Indian corn crop reaches the enormous yield of 130,000,000 bushels, which must be chiefly attributed to the advent of Southern Illinois on the commercial stage. The wheat crop of Illinois, amounting, as it does, to 20,000,000 bushels, has secured to Chicago its prominent position among the grain-exporting commercial cities. In 1855, Chicago exported twice as much grain as Galatz and Braila, the great wheat emporiums of the Lower Danube, and four times as much as Dantzic, the place of export of the Polonian wheat.
The following comparison of those cities in Europe which possess the largest corn-trade, with Chicago, will place the great importance' of the former in this respect beyond a doubt:
And yet the present position of Chicago is only the beginning of the beginning. The area of the State is upwards of 55,000 square miles, 80 per cent. of which are corn lands of the first quality. These 44,000 square miles, or 28,160,000 acres, planted with Indian corn, at an average yield of 50 bushels per acre, would fix the productiveness of the entire State, at the enormous rate of 1,408,000,000 bushels. Adding to this the facility of cultivation, the reader will have an idea of the almost fabulous wealth, that, accumulating in Illinois, in its reaction upon Chicago, the great commissioned agent of these trea sures, must incessantly propel her onward in her career of progress.
The eyes of the world are already fixed upon the high, commanding position, which Chicago assumes on the globe; this will appear from the fact that in 1855, agents of the French and English Governments attended the meetings in the Chicago Corn Exchange. Chicago, indeed, is the only place in the world, where orders of many millions of bushels can be promptly attended to and executed.
If thus the productiveness of the State has surpassed even the most sanguine expectations, the increase of so powerful an instrument for the acquisition of wealth, on the other hand, has also not been slow. Large sums of money, following the law by which they are inevitably attracted to the place where they bring the highest profit, concentrated at Chicago, whose numerous sumptuous stores and bazaars, fitted up in the most elegant, fashionable style, and enormous granaries, with their steam-cranes lifting on one side of the building the grain from the railroad trains, and lowering it at the other side into the vessels, together with great numbers of new buildings, (2700 of which were erected in a single year), as also the fact, that in every branch of business within her limits, the demand far exceeds the supply, are characteristic of her prodigiously increasing prosperity. Everything doubled or quadrupled! And upon reviewing the shipping interest of Chicago, we find the same surprising increase. The tonnage of all vessels owned by Chicago, and registered in that city until the end of 1855, amounts to 56,670 tons. So considerable, indeed, is the commercial navy of Chicago, that in a single season, that of 1855, not less than 120 large vessels put into that port on one day. The enormous stores of grain accumulated within Chicago, keep busy an entire flotilla, in proof whereof, we might refer to the fact, that in 1855, a single firm contracted for the transportation from Chicago to Buffalo, of 500,000 bushels, kept in store within that city. As already mentioned, during the season of 1855, not fewer than 6610 vessels, of 1,608,845 tons burden, entered the port of Chicago. Dividing them into classes, according to their respective tonnage, we subjoin a list of the vessels registered in the Chicago custom-house, as having entered that port: