Lapas attēli

And again :

“We would remark, in reference to the present tobacco crop in Maryland, that, from all the information we can get, (and we have taken a good deal of pains to obtain it, the crop of Maryland is about one-third short of an average one. At the same time, we understand that the quality is much superior to what it was last year, being rather thicker in the leaf, and generally very bright in color. The planters will therefore, in all probability, realize as much in funds for their crop this year as last, as the improvement in quality will make up for the deficiency in quantity.”

In July, we find the following notice from Rockville, Montgomery county: “ The tobacco planters here made great preparations for the cultivation of a larger crop than has been grown for a number of years; and the season, so far, has been favorable.” In the southeast section of the State, bordering on the Potomac river, the report respecting the crop is " 50 per cent. short, on account of a dry May and a very dry summer." We believe that the crop is full 25 per cent. short, on an average, of the usual fair crop of the State.

The Virginia crop, to judge from the notices which are found in the journals of that State, has greatly suffered during the past year. The following are specimens :

The Norfolk Beacon says: “In the great tobacco region of the Roanoke, in Prince Edward, Charlotte, Halifax, Pittsylvania, and in the upper James, a drought, more severe than has been felt for many years, has materially impaired the prospects of the tobacco planter. In the above-named region and country, the injury to the corn crop is estimated at one-half to twothirds. The condition of the tobacco crop is exceedingly critical. The portion of the crop first planted has grown spindling, for want of moisture; while that planted later has put forth very closely, or perished in the hill. As late as the 2d, no rain had fallen in the country above named for months, and the injury sustained by tobacco must be material.

“ The degree cannot be fully ascertained, but the crop must be short. Indeed, we fear another disastrous year for our great staple is about to revolve—a result which cannot be deprecated too earnestly by all interested in the prosperity of Virginia. The two last crops of tobacco have not only not added a dollar to the prosperity of the State, but left every planter involved in debt. The loss sustained by the planting interest has been almost overwhelming. Hundreds of slaves have been sold out of the State; not far from seventy-five to one hundred have been removed beyond our limits within the last twelve months, and a very heavy balance is yet marked down against the planter. It is difficult to estimate the bad results of a failure of the present tobacco crop; but, as circumstances now are, it is well to prepare ourselves for the worst, and make the best of it.”

Again: “ Tobacco crop.--A friend from Charlotte county, in this State, informs us that an unusually severe drought has prevailed in Charlotte, Halifax, Prince Edward, Cumberland, and in the counties adjoining these; and great fears are entertained for the corn and tobacco crops. No rain has fallen for several months, and up to Saturday last the drought still continued. The corn crop must be curtailed a half, if not more; and the fate of the tobacco crop is very doubtful. In large districts of country the plants failed, or were destroyed by the fly, and the beds were new sown. This produced a late planting of the crop, and the want of rain has increased the difficulty. Many 'plants have died in the hill, and few planters have a full crop standing. The drought has also injured the tobacco that was planted

[ocr errors]

early, causing it to grow light. The tobacco crops of the three past years have wrought such disaster to the planters and to the Commonwealth, that we will not permit ourselves to believe that another is to be added to the disheartening results of the past.”—Norfolk Herald, August 9, 1844.

Elsewhere we are told, in September: “ The prospect for a good crop of tobacco is very gloomy. The tobacco crop is very unpromising, the drought is so severe."

Similar to these are notices which have been furnished since the first crop was gathered. Thus, in the southeastern central section of the State, in the vicinity of Amelia county, it is stated that there was “a falling off of 30 per cent from the previous crop, though that which was raised is of superior quality.” This was the “result there of drought.” In the southern central counties, bordering on North Carolina, it is said: “ The last was a small and bad crop; and this is somewhat less-caused by a scarcity of plants, and a dry July, August, and September; but that portion of this year's crop which was planted early (say one fourth) is of a very superior quality.” North of this, "the quality was good, but the quantity was hardly an average.” In the western part of the State, also, the crop was about an average one. Considering that the last year's crop (1843) was so poor, though this of 1844 has been lessened, yet, on the whole, we think it has not decreased more than about 20 per cent.

In North Carolina, the same cause has operated to reduce the crop. In some sections the crop is rated at about one-half, as but little was planted. Elsewhere it is said that “in quantity it was about equal to last year, but the quality was superior.” On the whole, the average decrease from the crop of 1843 was doubtless equal to 15 per cent.

Respecting the crop in South Carolina, we have so little information that we find it difficult to form an estimate. Bordering as it does on North Carolina and Georgia, the season was similar; but, as the crop occupies a minor place in the production of this state, we allow but little increaseperhaps 5 per cent.

In Georgia, the tobacco crops in the western section, or what is called the Cherokee country, are said “not only to be much better, from the favorableness of the season, but there has been an increased culture.” In one part of this region, the increase is estimated at 150 per cent., on account of the very low price of cotton. Take the State through, we believe that there was probably from 25 to 30 per cent. advance on the crop of 1843.

The same, we believe, was the case with Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida ; although, from the little attention given to it, notices are unfrequent in the all-absorbing question of the prosperity of the cotton crop. The crop of tobacco in Tennessee is quite large; and in West Tennessee, we see it stated that it was “very promising.” The whole crop of this State appears to have been an increased one--perhaps 10 to 15 per cent. The same was probably the case with the crop in Kentucky, where there was an increase of from 5 to 10 per cent. It is said that, from all accounts, the presumption is, that the crop in Ohio is nearly or quite an average one, and the quality about as in the previous year. In the Miami valley, one informant says: “In 1843 there were 12,000 pounds raised; in 1844, 8,000. The crop of this year was superior to the last in every respect, and the decrease of quantity is the result of a less number of acres being cultivated. In yet another section of the State, the quantity is fully double. Probably there was an advance of from 10 to 15 per cent.---possibly more.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

former year.

The early notices of the crop in Missouri which meet us are like the following:

"The tobacco crop in Missouri. -A gentleman familiar with the subject has recently been travelling up the Missouri river. He informs us that he saw and conversed with a number of planters, and had means of gaining correct intelligence of the prospect of the coming crop in the counties of Boone, Howard, Chariton, Randolph, Macon, Calloway, Montgomery, Warren, and St. Charles. In these counties our informant states that the crop will nearly equal in quantity, and greatly excel in quality, that of any

Our informant states, that since his return he has had opportunities of conversing with planters, and received accounts from most of the other tobacco-growing counties, all of which concur in the above statement. It is now pretty certain that the quantity in the State will about equal, (probably from the increase of growers,) if not exceed, that of any former year, and be of fair complexion, and better adapted to manufacturing than any previous crop."-St. Louis Republican. The information

obtained since the crop was gathered hardly corresponds with the above. · For instance, in sections of the State we are told that 6i the crop was but about one-half a crop, on account of the overflow;" and, again, “two thirds of a crop.”. We believe, from all we can ascertain, that there was a falling off of from 20 to 25 per cent.;" but that, allowing for the increased culture, on account of new lands, &c., we may estimate it at about 15 per cent.

The following is the statement in the St. Louis Gazette, which, at 5,000 hogsheads for one-third of the crop, is near our estimate:

Tobacco.—The crop sent to this market falls short of last year, when there were about 7,000 hogsheads. This year the number will not much exceed 5,000 hogsheads, and the quality is not generally so good. It has been cut too green, and is specifically lighter than that of a more mature growth. Prices vary from $1 to $11 per hundred. The crop throughout the State for 1844 will probably amount to 20,000 hogsheads. Only about one-third of the entire crop comes to this market. About two-thirds is shipped direct to New Orleans, from the different harbors along the river."

Tobacco is raised in some of the other States; but the quantity is comparatively small, and attracts so little attention, that no very definite calculations can be given respecting the crop in them. We have fixed the estimates in the table, according to the best judgment, from a comparison of former productive seasons, contiguity, &c.

The whole tobacco crop of the United States for 1844 we suppose may be fixed at 151,705,000 pounds.

In a Richmond paper we find the following statement respecting the crops of Virginia and North Carolina, under date of October 3 : « The total inspections embraced in the statement to the 30th of September, is 10,861 hogsheads less than at a corresponding period in 1843; but still the returns do not accurately exhibit the real deficiency between the productions of 1842 and 1843, in consequence of a larger quantity of tobacco being reprised and inspected a second time; the present year, perhaps 1,500 hogs. heads were, at least, thus counted twice in the inspections. At this time the stock of old tobacco held by the planters is very small. Relative, therefore, to the crop for inspection in 1845, it must be mainly confined to the production of 1844, which, in the aggregate, will not exceed 10,000 to 45,000 hogsheads. The home demand for tobacco is regularly increasing."



Statistics of inspections and stock, to 30th September, 1844.


Stock. Richmond

19,147 hhds. 8,446 hhds. Petersburg


714 Farmville


380 Clarksville


24 Lynchburg


4,674 Tye river


50 Milton and Henderson, North Carolina



[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Not official-conjectured



[ocr errors]


The kinds inspected during the year 1844 at Baltimore, it is said, wereMaryland

32,101 hhds. Ohio

15,423 Kentucky

1,075 Virginia

225 Missouri

40 Indiana

30 Tennessee

21 Pennsylvania


[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]

In a Virginia paper, we find the following remarks with reference to the amount of production, and the effect of a failure in the crop, which we subjoin, as furnishing some facts which may be useful to record :

“From the year 1800 to the year 1839, the whole quantity of tobacco exported from the United States, annually, amounted to about 32,000 hogsheads. During this period, one or two short crops in Virginia would affect prices. The Western States, during this period, had never exported, on an average, more than 35,000 hogsheads. In 1840, the West exported 40,000; in 1841, 54,600 hogsheads; in 1842, 68,000 hogsheads; in 1843, . 89,800 hogsheads; and in 1844, 81,200 hogsheads. We refer you to the New Orleans price current of the 7th of September, for the exports of tobacco from 1835 to 1844, inclusive ; by which you will see that New Orleans alone has exported, in the last two years, as much tobacco, on an average, as the average products of the United States previous to 1835. This, we think, is sufficient to account for the low prices of 1843 and 1844; and we may say, the very inferior quality of the Virginia tobacco for two years past has contributed not a little to lessen its value, and to bring the Western tobacco into more general use. The fact is, that the West produces now nearly as much as the consumption of Europe demands. The failure of a crop in Virginia has very little, if any, effect on prices in Europe. It does, however, affect prices at home in our own market, since our manufacturers require annually from 18,000 to 20,000 hogsheads of Virginia tobacco for the consumption of the country, which is about half of what is supposed to be the crop of Virginia grown this year ; and the consumption being on the increase, it is fair to suppose that at least one. half of the tobacco raised in Virginia hereafter will be manufactured for home use.

It should be remembered that the growth of tobacco is not

confined to the United States. It is supposed that at least as much as 75,000 hogsheads are raised in other countries. It is true the consumption is on the increase ; but it seems that the production is far ahead of the consumption, as will appear from the statement of exports and products.”

In letters which have been received from Algiers, (as we learn from the foreign journals,) it is stated that the French have been successful in their plantations of tobacco formed there; so that it is not improbable that, in the course of some years, they may derive a portion of their supply for the market from that colony. The opinion is expressed that China may open to us a considerable sale, as the milder kinds, cut fine, and sent in packages of 5, 10, or 20 pounds, would be quite profitable there. They are said to use an immense quantity of their own raising, but it is far inferior in quality to the American. That which is taken out from this country by the captains and mates of ships is said to find a ready sale. As ships from every quarter of the globe visit that part, and not much is exposed for sale, the opinion seems probable that there would be a very considerable traffic, were it attempted, as might now be through the ports opened to us. eral valuable papers on the culture of tobacco have been published by Dr. Gardner, who enters very fully into the question as to the conditions of the soil, the preparation necessary, &c. He states that “in rich loams, where the solution of the minerals of the soil is rapid, and where 10 to 20 per cent. of vegetable matter is incorporated in the earth, tobacco may be obtained for many years; but it is always an exhausting crop.” He adds: “It has been stated that 170 pounds of mineral matter are removed in less than three months, by a crop of tobacco, from one acre of land.” “This is very much more than wheat or other grains carry off in eight or nine months. Thus, wheat planted in October, and cut in June, takes from the soil, of the same mineral substances, 22 pounds in a crop of 20 bushels, with straw. In these estimates, the sand or silica is omitted, inasmuch as its supply is too great in all soils to cause any fear from exhaustion.”

“ The important mineral substances presented in Havana tobacco, examined by Hertwig, (Liebig's Annalen for April, 18439) are: Salts of potash, 34.15,

Salts of lime, 51.38,
Magnesia, 4.09,

Phosphates 9.04, in one hundred parts ashes.

“ These substances were, for the most part, insoluble in earth, and must have been dissolved during the growth of the crop.

“ We have now arrived at a clear view of the cause of sterility in lands as respects tobacco-saline substances and ammonia are not rendered fit for food with sufficient rapidity. We also see why a large amount of dead leaves, or other vegetable rubbish, will yield a crop, by giving up to the roots a sufficient quantity of these bodies.

“ The great question is-whether there are economical means by which land, which has lost the power of sustaining tobacco, can be rendered fertile, and be maintained in that condition.”

He recommends the attaining a suitable soil by providing means to promote its porosity, and then to hasten the solubility of its saline matters. This (he says) may be done by liming; by burning part of the surface soil with lime in the kiln ; by incorporating vegetable matter in the soil; by burning of clay, and" pulverizing; also, to secure the ammonia of the soil. On these subjects, he makes many remarks. The whole essays deserve the careful perusal of the tobacco planter, as they contain numerous


« iepriekšējāTurpināt »