Lapas attēli
PDF
ePub

tubes have also been produced, but they are said to fail in the purposes for which they were designed. Well represented as were electro-metal. lurgic specimens in the Exhibition, and extensively as the process has been introduced in the arts, there are many modes and applications known to the scientific which have not yet been adopted by the manufacturer. In the machinery department was exhibited a wood electro-magnetic en. gine, invented by M. J. Hjorth, of which a word should be said. The improvements consist in using only one hollow electric magnet, the respective poles of which are divided into three or more square rings, inside slightly conical, and outside connected with the bows of the magnet, which form the communication between the respective poles. Plates with ribs, connected in the centre with corresponding magnetic plates and ribs, are applied for guiding the motion of the piston, serving at the same time as a means by which metallic contact may, during each stroke, be established and broken between the piston and one of the respective poles. Whilst the engine makes a down stroke, magnetic contact is es. tablished between the north pole and piston; and the latter, obtaining thereby the same polarity as the north pole, will, of course, attract the south pole. By means of these and other arrangements, Mr. Hjorth is enabled to obtain a stroke of any length with only one electro magnet, the piston being a movable extension of either of the poles, and attracted by a succession of polarities, the acting surfaces of which extend to the whole periphery; and also to arrange the piston in such a manner that it may be extended to any size, and at the same time not be heavier than a piston in a low pressure engine of the same diameter.

Substances used as Food, and in Manufactures.

Food.-Among the most interesting and valuable of the series of articles exhibited under The head of substances used as food, not one surpassed the very fine collection of the Messrs. Lawson, of Edinburgh. It might be described as being a complete encyclopædia of the agricultural produce of Great Britain. The specimens were numerous, well selected, and ad. mirably arranged, and they richly repaid a careful and minute examina. tion. They were divided into six series, well arranged in cases, and were brietly described by labels. The first division included wheat and all the conmon cereals; in fact, all those plants which are cultivated for the sake of their farinaceous seeds. The seeds, in most cases, were accompanied with portions of the flour, both in the raw state and also manufactured into biscuits. The straw of each plant was also shown. The several divisions contained grass of all sorts, herbage, and forage plants. The third included all the plants which are cultivated for the sake of their roots—such as turnips, beets, carrots, &c. Of these the seeds, dried beans, and excellent models in wax, as well as colored drawings of the roots, were shown. The fourth and fifth divisions consisted of plants cultivated for the use of manufactures and for medicines, including, of course, the various fibre yielding plants, and also those which yield dyes. In the case of the latter, not only were the seed and dry plant shown, but also the part used as a dye, together with good specimens of cloth and other fabrics dyed with it, giving, therefore, a inost complete illustration of its practical use. In the last division were placed characteristic speci.nens of a great number of timber trees, consisting of woods, leaves, fruits, and seeds. The specimens of leaves were especially beautiful and well selected, being for the most part sections of large trees, cut either horizontally or longitudinally, and in part polished, so as to show the grain.

Next in extent to the collection of the Messrs. Lawson was a colloc. tion of seeds exhibited by the Messrs. Gibbs. Part of this se consisted of fodder grasses, the dried plant being shown in each division of the cases by the size of the seed. A very valuable and complete series of wheat was contributed by Colonel Le Conteur, of Jersey. Near these were also samples of hylsridized wheats, exhibited by Mr. Maund, of Bromsgrove.

Almost every country exhibited samples of wheat, barley, oats, and the ordinary cereals which are cultivated as articles of food. To attempt to specify these would lead us into too minute details for this Report. Many samples of new kinds of wheat were taken from the specimens shown in France, England, Russia, Spain, North Germany, &c., &c., to be tried in our own soil.

As a whole, the seeds (especially of wheat) from the United States were deemed superior to all others, and were greatly sought after. Mr. T. Bell, of Morrisania, New York, prepared and packed large samples of all his farm products—spring wheat, Soule wheat, Mediterranean wheat, bald white flint wheat, barley, rye, buckwheat, oats, maize, hroom corn, flax, millet, clover, and timothy seeds, which he freely distributed to the agriculturists of all nations. Of the new kinds of wheat exhib. ited, I doubt if many will be found useful to introduce upon our lands. The black wheat of the Burmese, and the soft white wheat of India, have each their own share of interest, though, from their being greatly subject to the weevil, I doubt if they would prove of any advantage to

Col. B. P. Johnson, commissioner from the State of New York to the Exhibition, gave the subject of grains particular attention, and his report upon that and kindred subjects will not fail to be interesting and useful to our farmers.

Wools. The collection of wools was by no means large. England, Scotland, and some of the northern islands, exhibited specimens of the South Down, merino, and Cheviot. Most of them were of a secondrate character, harsh, weak, and coarse. It must not be forgotten, how. ever, that in England the rage for fine wool has never, as in the United States, depreciated the size and mutton of the flocks. The fine wools are not the produce of England. The farmer raises sheep for mutton, and the wool he takes from his flock is the gain upon which he counts. Still, there are crosses of breeds of sheep in England-such, for example, as the Leicester with the South Down—which produce good wool without deteriorating the market value of the carcass. Many of our agriculturists are now turning their attention to the English breeds of sheep. Fine ewes and bucks, purchased at a high price, have been imported during the summer, and many more have been ordered for another

us.

season.

In the departments devoted to the colonies of Great Britain many samples of wool were shown. From the Cape of Good Hope there were capital samples of Saxony; from Australia a clean wool, under the name of white skin wool, seemingly a cross between the merino and some native breed; from the East, Thibet wools, Hindostan wools, Malay wools, and others; and from Port Philip a wool recently introduced into England, fine, strong, clean, with a long curling staple, and a weight of nearly four pounds to the fleece. There were wools shown, also, from South America; from Hungary-fine, but very greasy; from Vienna the best-whether in quality, strength, weight, or condition of any in the Exhibition; from Bohemia—a pure merino; and from Silesia. The wool, however, most deserving the attention of our growers came from Prussia, contributed by M. Thaer, Moeglin, all native feeces, and combining the desirable qualities for our western States. The sheep is represented to be large, hardy, easily fatted, and producing good mutton; not subject to disease, and yielding a long staple, strong and fine, wool, in weight to each fleece of over tour pounds. Another very good quality of these native Prussian sheep is that the wool, uniformly good over all the skin, is equally covered upon it; thus, doubtless, accounting for the great average weight of the fleece.

The specimens of wool from our own country were confined to some three or four samples. Through the influence of Judge Duncan, of Virginia, these samples received the full attention of the jury, of which he was a member, and in the verdict were favorably noticed. Spain has become so associated with good wools that one expected, upon entering her division, to find a large collection. It was, therefore, disappointing to find but few, and those, for the most part, decidedly inferior. It would appear that, during the present century, when great improvements in the breeds of sheep have taken place over all the world, Spain alone has stood still, if, indeed, she has not sensibly retrograded. I may here state, with reference to this subject, that in former times the Castilian monarchs granted very peculiar privileges to the great sheep farmers, who were, in fact, the chief nobles of the land, and the heads of the principal religious establishment, and who were united together into a society which met at Madrid, from time to time, under the name of Consejo de Mesta. This society had supreme power in all matters relating to sheep, pastures, shepherds, and wool; and, amongst other important privileges, they had the right of pasturing their sheep on the lands of any faraier on payment of a small fine, or tribute; they were, in short, allowed to feed their sheep at the public expense. All this, however, has been long since done away with.

The French collection of wool was not numerous; but some of the fleeces shown were highly curious and interesting. The ordinary French wools of commerce are not at all peculiar, and, for the most partincluding a small number of rather indifferent specimens from Algeria there was little in them to deserve notice. It will, therefore, be enough to indicate those which possessed more than common interest. The most curious fleece exhibited in that division was unquestionably a variety of merino from the farm of M. Graux, at Hauchamp. This was an improved modification of the old Spanish stock, which, by careful selection and judicious care in breeding, has become a permanent variety, exhibiting no tendency to degenerate. The wool was thick upon the skin, long, remarkably brilliant, and very strong. It was a very fine and beautiful fibre, and one which is, as yet, unknown to our woollen manufacturers. Close by this fleece, and contrasting very curiously with it, were some fleeces of pure old merino breeds, which had been bred in and in, without any change or variation, for a long series of years. They showed to what extent a good breed may be impoverished, though doubtless sent for a very different purpose. There were also fleeces from the national establishment at Rambouillet, fine, but of a short staple, and not well grown over the whole skin.

Cotton.Perhaps one of the most important questions necessarily arising out of the Exhibition was, as to what extent any one country was to continue in the future to enjoy the monopoly in producing certain staple commodities. This question-of no inconsiderable interest when it concerned the articles of tea, sugar, tobacco, opium, rice, and cochineal-became of exceeding importance when applied to the future production of cotton, at the same time, when regarded in all its bearings, perhaps the most intrinsically valuable raw material in the world. To Great Britain, and all the other manufacturing countries of Europe, this question was of hardly less importance than to the United States, since, while to us the rise and fall of prices in cotton become the index of all other trade, to them it is the source from which a great portion of their industry derives its life. Those who are not in the habit of reading trade lists will have some idea of the importance of the cotton crops to the English manufacturers alone, from the fact that we export to England every year a quantity of cotton varying from a million and a quarter to a million and a half of bales, each bale weighing not far from 380 pounds; consequently, even at the lowest estimate, the annual business between us in cotton alone exceeds the enorinous quantity of 470,000,000 pounds. As this export is constantly increasing, and every year making Europe more dependent upon us as producers, and we more dependent upon Europe as our great market, the question in regard to the continuity of this trade beconies one of vital importance both to us and to our purchasers. To show what relation the cotion of other countries bears to ours, and what prospects were apparent at the Exhibition in regard to any successful competition on their part with us, was one purpose in view in the examination made in this department of raw material.

The samples of cotton from the United States were thirteen, embracing specimens from five different States, viz: South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The exhibitors were J. Pope, Memphis, Tennessee; S. Bond, Memphis, Tennessee; Wade Hampton, South Carolina; W. Seabrook, South Carolina; J. B. Merriweather, Montgomery, Alabama; J. Nailor, Vicksburg, Mississippi; G. L. Holmes, Memphis, Tennessee; Daniel Lake, Memphis, Tennessee; J. R. Jones, Columbus, Georgia; J. V. Jones, Six Oaks, Georgia; Eli Raynor and J. L. Morgan, Alabama; Truesdale, Jacobs, & Co., (a case exhibiting several samples of various grades,) New York; and J. L. Mitchell, Vicksburg, Mississippi. Of these, eleven were full bales, exhibiting the style of bagging and the manner of packing the cotton for market. They were all, without exception, first rate specimens of the various kinds of cotton raised in the States, and showed, not what could be carefully culled and prepared as a museum sample, but just what was the article raised on the plantation.

In distinguishing the actual value of the several bales, it was next to impossible for the most experienced broker to determine exactly the grade which each should occupy, since, while every kind of these cottons was known in market, the quality in the bale was superior to the same quality in the maiket. The cotton of J. R. Jones, of Columbia, Georgia—a cotton raised on his plantation in Alabama-was beautifully five, soft, and silky. It had been prepared with great care, and told well for the process of cultivation he had adopted. The same may be said of Mr. Merriweather's cotton, of Montgomery, Alabama. It was soft, strong, fine, of good color, well handled, and in excellent condition. That of Hon Wade Hampton, of Charleston, South Carolina, was very similar to Mr. Merriweather's, bearing so strong resemblances in silkiness, softness, fineness of staple, and pure color to that, that it was believed by many brokers who examined it to have been raised in the same neighborhood.

W. Seabrook, esq., of South Carolina, exhibited Sea Island cotton in bale, and a small sample unginned. The character of his cotton is well known in the European market; and his exports are largely in demand. The bale shown at the Exhibition fully sustained the reputation of this unsurpassed production. The seed, I may here remark, was an object of much inquiry. There have been such experiments made upon the island cotton seed within the last year-in extracting its oil and using the residium for fodder--as to show that, if it can be afforded at a price low enough, the whole seed of the crop, now mainly useless, will come into consumption for these purposes. I directed several letters to South Carolina, calling the attention of growers of the Sea Island crop to this subject.

The specimens from Tennessee were all highly creditable to the exhibitors. The cotton of Mr. D. Lake was of a beautiful color, and carefully prepared; that of Mr. Samuel Bond, soft, strong in staple, and well ginned; that of Mr. J. Pope, fine, silky, and judiciously handled; that of Mr. G. L. Holmes, perfectly ripe, white, sott, and even. Indeed, all these cottons were as good as could be desired, both as regards the quality of the staple or its mode of preparation.

The cotton of J. Nailor, of Vicksburg, was of a very superior quality, combining, with a fine and soft, an unsually long staple, and prepared most perfectly for the market. The cotton of Eli Raynor, though delayed long in arriving at the Exhibition, and thus losing the first examination of the jury, was of a pure white color, silky, and admirably ginned. J. V. Jones, of Six Oaks, Georgia, exhibited a sample of a new kind of upland cotton, called the Jethro cotton, which excited much attention. It has many of the characteristics of the finest Sea Island cottonsoft, silky, long staple, fine, pure, and of a rich color. Should this cotton become generally grown, it will become a favorite article with the manufacturers of the higher class of goods.

When looking at the other samples of cotton in the Exhibition, one impression never left the mind, and that was, that the culture of all cottons other than ours is slovenly conducted. Wherever the specimens came from-India, Egypt, South America, or Spain, even when the cotton looked well—there had evidently been a lack of care, either in planting, gathering, ginning, packing, or finishing, which was of material injury to its character. There was an excellent little series contributed from British Guiana, showing that good cotton might be produced there, but it lacked quantity, from which alone a fair estimate can be made. From Jamaica a good Sea Island cotton was exhibited, which was badly cut in ginning; and from Barbadoes a New Orleans cotton, strong, fine, and silky, but badly colored. The postnatal cottons were specimens of how a good

« iepriekšējāTurpināt »