1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Apalachicola

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APALACHICOLA, a city, port of entry, and the county-seat of Franklin county, Florida, U.S.A., in the N.W. part of the state, on Apalachicola Bay and at the mouth of the Apalachicola river. Pop. (1890) 2727; (1900) 3077, of whom 1589 were of negro descent; (1905, state census) 3244. It is served by the Apalachicola Northern railway (to Chattahoochee, Florida), and by river steamers which afford connexion with railways at Carrabelle about 25 m. distant, at Chatahoochee (or River Junction), and at Columbus and Bainbridge, Georgia, and by ocean-going vessels with American and foreign ports. The city has a monument (1900) to John Gorrie (1803-1855), a physician who discovered the cold-air process of refrigeration in 1849 (and patented an ice-machine in 1850), as the result of experiments to lower the temperatures of fever patients. The bay is well protected by St Vincent, Flag, Sand, and St George’s islands; and the shipping of lumber, naval stores and cotton, which reach the city by way of the river, forms the principal industry. Before the development of railways in the Gulf states, Apalachicola was one of the principal centres of trade in the southern states, ranking third among the Gulf ports in 1835. In 1907 the Federal government projected a channel across the harbour bar 100 ft. wide and 10 ft. deep and a channel 150 ft. wide and 18 ft. deep for Link Channel and the West Pass. In 1907 the exports were valued at $317,838; the imports were insignificant. The value of the total domestic and foreign commerce of the port for the year ending on the 30th of June 1907 was estimated at $1,240,000 (76,000 tons). The fishery products, including oysters, tarpon, sturgeon, caviare and sponges, are also important.