The New International Encyclopædia/United States
UNITED STATES. The territory of the United States of America, exclusive of Alaska and colonial dependencies, lies in the temperate portion of North America, but reaches almost to the tropical zone. It embraces an area of 2,970,038 square miles. The area including Alaska is 3,560,922 square miles; and including the colonial dependencies, 3,699,440 square miles. The United States proper, or the United States south of Canada, extends approximately from longitude 67° to 125° W. from the Atlantic Ocean (whose great arm, the Gulf of Mexico, forms half of the southern boundary) to the Pacific. The northern boundary is somewhat arbitrary in the east between New England and the Lower Saint Lawrence region, but from northern New York it follows the Saint Lawrence and the middle line of the Great Lakes to northern Minnesota. Beyond the Lake of the Woods the boundary follows the 49th parallel to the Pacific Ocean. The peninsula of Florida extends to about 25°, and the southern part of Texas to about 26°, north latitude. The parallel 49° is about that of Paris, while the latitude of Key West carries one far down into the Sahara. It may be further observed that New York is on the parallel of Naples and Constantinople, and Memphis on that of Gibraltar. The United States has preponderatingly a natural boundary of salt and fresh waters. On the side of Mexico and of British Columbia the boundary crosses the Cordilleran Ranges. This article treats of the United States proper except when otherwise stated. Alaska, and also the colonial dependencies (see section Colonies below), are treated under their respective heads.
General Description. The lands of the United States may be roughly separated into four areas: the Atlantic lowlands, the Appalachian highlands, the Mississippi Valley, and the Pacific highlands. These regions are nowhere sharply separated from each other. Leaving out for a moment the narrow strip of Atlantic lowland, one may best view the United States as made up of two great uplands, with a broad lowland lying between. The country thus shows the physical plan of North America, for the Appalachian belt rises from the Gulf plains in Alabama and ends northward on the shores of Labrador. The Western uplands or Cordilleras begin virtually at the base of the continent; they rise to a great elevation in Mexico, maintain great heights and gain their greatest width in the Western United States; and thence continue through British America and Alaska. In like manner the Mississippi plains are continuous with the Hudson Bay region and the central plains of Canada to the shores of the Arctic Sea, and it is possible to pass from the delta of the Mississippi to the mouth of the Mackenzie River without rising 1000 feet above the ocean.
The Atlantic Lowland. This region, although not large, contains a vast population, and is historically the most important. It made the interior of the continent accessible to discovery from the east, offered hospitable ground to the colonists, and is rich in the harbors that have led to the building of cities and the growth of commerce. These lowlands are not the same in origin in the North as in the South. The Atlantic rim of New England is a rough lowland rising from sea level to the height of four or five hundred feet. It is beset with rough hills, of native rock, and of glacial waste. It is an uneven but subdued or nearly worn-out mountain country, like western Massachusetts or northern New England, except that it is more fully degraded. South of New York, on the other hand, and reaching to Florida Strait, is the Atlantic Coastal Plain, including southern New Jersey, Delaware, and a broad belt of all the South Atlantic States. It is a smoother land, without projecting masses of rocky hills, and sloping gently up from the tide levels to the rougher lands of the Appalachian belt. It is intersected by Delaware and Chesapeake bays and their rivers, and by more southerly streams. It is often known as the ‘tidewater country’ because the sea enters its estuarine rivers for scores of miles. It is covered with fields of tobacco, cotton, rice, and fruit orchards, or with pastures or native forest. The region is in greater part a sea bottom uncovered at a comparatively recent period, and becomes continuous, beneath the Atlantic waters, with the continental shelf which lies between the land border and the deep seas. West of this plain is a much denuded belt of ancient Appalachian mountains, which is becoming known as the Piedmont Plain. It is from a few hundred to a thousand feet in altitude and lies between the coastal plain and the Blue Ridge. See Piedmont Plain.
One feature of the entire Atlantic coast is that the rivers are tidal. They may occupy narrow channels to the sea border, like the Hudson, or they may enter at the head of deep and spacious bays, as do the Delaware and the Susquehanna. Such a water system with the above rivers, the Potomac, James, and other streams, is well called a ‘drowned’ river system. By this is meant that the trunk valley and its branches were cut out by land streams, and that the sea has entered their lower parts because of a sinking of the edge or of larger parts of the continent. The historical meaning of these conditions can hardly be reckoned. It is enough here to observe that nearly all the harborages and quiet salt waters of our Atlantic border have this origin; and that thus have grown our great seaboard cities, where ships may ride safely at the mouth of tidal streams whose waters offer gateways to the interior of the continent.
The Appalachian Uplands. From the physical point of view these may he taken as the eastern part of the rocky skeleton of the country and the continent. In their highest points, the White Mountains in the north and the Black Mountains in the middle south, they attain elevations exceeding 6000 feet in the loftiest projections east of the Rocky Mountains. Historically they form the Appalachian barrier, with large consequences in colonial annals and in the opening of the lands that lie westward. See Appalachians.
The Central Lowlands. We give this name to the lower lands of the Mississippi basin, although it is but a vague designation. These plains pass gradually up into the plateau on the east. To the north they merge with the smooth lowlands about the Great Lakes, to the south they are continuous with the Gulf lands, and to the west they pass gradually into the high plains west and south of the Missouri River. The region is often called, in the same rough way, the Prairies. See Prairie.
The Great Lake Region. The lands about the Great Lakes have considerable variety. During the recession of the continental glacier the lakes had higher water levels and often much greater extent than now. During this flooded condition what are now the bordering lands received a cover of such fine muds as are spread upon the bottom of all great bodies of water. To some extent previous inequalities are masked, and the resulting surface is often very smooth and almost level. This is especially true of lakes Ontario, Erie, Huron and Michigan. Some of these lands were treeless and hence were property called prairies, although modern physiography prefers to designate them as lake plains. Lake Superior is surrounded by older rocks, which have been greatly disturbed and metamorphosed, and the remnants of these ancient mountains form a higher and rougher land than about the lower lakes. This is true of the northern peninsula of Michigan, of Wisconsin, and of northeastern Minnesota. Naturally, therefore, these rocks hold vast stores of iron and copper, while the strata of the prairies offer little in the way of mineral resources except coal. See Great Lakes.
The Gulf Plains. These are most simply defined as a continuation of the Atlantic Coastal Plain, or another part of the younger fringe of the continent. In central Georgia and Alabama the younger formations abut on the older rocks of the southern Appalachians and mark approximately the encroachment of the later seas. By gentle uplift the marginal sea bottoms of the Gulf were laid bare, and form the flat lowlands of this semi-tropical region. This explains in brief the origin of the peninsula of Florida, most of whose surface has now an altitude of less than 100 feet. A gentle uplift of the sea bottom brought this land into existence. Cavernous openings in the rocks, underground streams, and springs of great volume result from the presence of extensive limestone formations as part of the bed rock of the region. The seaward edge of this land abounds in sand bars, coral reefs, and mangrove swamps, and this single State, counting its main shores, its bays and numberless islands, has more than 4000 miles of shore line. It is proposed to open a way for quiet water navigation down the entire east coast of Florida.
Westward from Alabama, the Mississippi River (q.v.) becomes the controlling feature in the topography of the Gulf region. The broad Gulf plain occupies a large part of southern and eastern Texas. As in the region to the eastward, the younger rocks have been made into land by uplift and retreat of the sea. As a rule the surface slopes gently toward the Gulf, but with escarpments and great local variations of topography. Some areas are prairie, while others are heavily forested, and the rise to the northwest leads first to the great plateau, or Llano Estacado, and then to the mountains of the Rocky Mountain Range. The shore line is a long crescent, bordered by extensive sand bars, which inclose stretches of quiet water. Galveston is on one of these bars, and it is thus exposed to the Gulf hurricanes.
The Great Plains. This is the name usually given to the lands which rise gradually from the prairies to the eastern base of the Rocky Mountains. But the altitude of these lands is such that they might be called with propriety a plateau. From altitudes of about 1000 feet along the Missouri River in Kansas and Nebraska, they rise to heights of 5000 to 6000 feet at the foot of the western mountains. In general this rise is imperceptibly gradual, but its continuity is sometimes interrupted by escarpments, and the easterly flowing rivers have incised shallow valleys upon the region. The strata are little disturbed and thus the country resembles the prairie region, but the underlying beds are geologically younger and are overlain in many areas by large bodies of waste, which in part may have been deposited in lakes and in parts was no doubt distributed by torrents from the mountains. Climatic causes have also made the region different in aspect from the prairies. The plains are semi-arid in the east and truly arid in the west, and are therefore but sparsely clad with vegetation. Forests are thus infrequent, the herbaceous vegetation is sparse and has the character of the desert, and agriculture as one goes west is dependent on irrigation. Over large areas the water supply for this purpose is deficient, and grazing is the only remaining resource. This region is a vast one, having the east and west limits already given, and reaching from central Texas to the northern border of the country, where it merges into the great Western plains of Canada. In the north the most prominent break in the plains is the Black Hills mountain area. Here an elevated mass of ancient rocks protrudes through the younger strata, giving a region of rugged relief, hard rocks, mines, and forests. In the Black Hills region, in much of the western Dakotas, and in Montana and western Nebraska, are the Bad Lands (q.v.).
Uplands of Missouri and Arkansas. There is yet to be noticed the most extensive body of elevated land between the Appalachians and the higher levels of the great plains. This lies in southern Missouri and in northern and central Arkansas and westward. In Missouri these uplands are of moderate height, dissected by the rivers, covered with forests, and known as the Ozark Plateau. Still better known, owing to their metallic deposits, are some low mountains of very ancient rocks familiar as Iron Mountain and Pilot Knob. Running through central Arkansas are the Ouachita Mountains. These rise from below the young sediments of the Mississippi Valley, and trend westward, passing through Indian Territory and Oklahoma into northern Texas. This upland region south of the Missouri River, therefore, is associated on various sides with the prairies, the alluvial plains of the Mississippi, the Gulf plains of the South, and the great plains of the West.
The Rocky Mountains. The name is properly applied only to an eastern range of the Cordilleran or Western Uplands. The range, with numerous peaks rising above 14,000 feet, extends through Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, and New Mexico, and sends some outlying ridges into Texas. See Rocky Mountains.
The Colorado Plateaus. West of the Rocky Mountains, in Wyoming, Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona, is the basin of the Colorado River. This great stream confines its drainage, save near its mouth, to an upland several thousand feet above the sea. Having abundant sources in the rains and snows of the various parts of the Rocky Mountain Range, and rising at great altitudes, it has both velocity and volume, and hence has cut out the great cañons for which it is famous. This is a deeply but only partly dissected region consisting of blocks of strata, cut apart from each other by profound gorges, often intricate in pattern. Being an arid region, the abundant waters are of remote derivation and sunk in the cañons, while the sparse rainfall causes desert conditions to be general, with much exposed rock, little vegetation, and a general absence of conditions favorable to civilized life. Closely associated with these great plateaus are two short but lofty ranges of mountains. One of these is the Wasatch, marking the boundary between the plateaus and the Great Basin, in central Utah. The other is the Uinta Range, about loO miles in length, and extending from northwestern Colorado through the borderlands of Wyoming and Utah. Its chief development is in the latter State and in its east and west trend it departs from the usual direction of American mountain axes.
The Great Basin. This is an area of interior drainage, made up of many minor basins, of which the chief is that of the Great Salt Lake in Utah. See Great Basin.
The Columbia and Snake River Plateaus. Large areas drained by these streams in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington are of volcanic origin, and along the Snake River in Idaho and Oregon the lavas form plateaus about 4000 feet in altitude. They are a natural desert, since the region is arid, but are capable of great development under the process of irrigation.
The Mountains and Valleys of the Pacific Coast. The features to which reference is here made belong to three States: California, Oregon, and Washington. They will be best understood if it is observed that a single lofty range, the Sierra Nevada, forms the eastern border of California, and that it extends, under the name of the Cascade Range, northward through central Oregon and Washington. Its culminating point, in California, is seemingly Mount Whitney (14,500-15,000 feet), which may also be the culminating point of the entire United States south of Alaska. Bordering the sea are lower and younger mountains, constituting also a prolonged range, but variously named, as the Coast Range in California, the Klamath Mountains in Oregon, and the Olympic Mountains in Washington. (See Sierra Nevada; Cascade Range, etc.) Between these parallel ranges are lowland valleys of the utmost importance in the development of the region. In California there is the great valley drained by the Sacramento and Joaquin rivers, the centre of the fruit and grain culture of the State. In Oregon the Willamette Valley is analogous in origin and in human importance to this, as still farther north there is the Puget Sound Valley in the State of Washington. In association with these mountain ranges, reference should be made to the giant and minor volcanic cones which line their trend, and many of whose well-formed summits rise high into the snow-line (Shasta, Hood, Rainier, Baker). The coast line of the Pacific is not nearly so great as that of the Atlantic coast, because it is less indented. It has, however, a few of the choicest bodies of inland or protected waters to be found on any shore. Such are San Francisco Bay and Puget Sound, while the deep, tidal Columbia and Willamette rivers offer similar advantages to northern Oregon. It is thus seen that the Cordilleran system is made up of several parallel ranges of mountains, separated in turn by intermontane areas of lofty plateau, or, nearer Pacific Ocean, by broad and fertile lowlands.
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY.|
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY.|
Hydrography. The drainage of the United States may be classed as Atlantic and Pacific. As with the entire continent, and with South America, the smaller ocean receives by far the greater contribution of fresh water from the lands now under review. The Atlantic streams may be considered as belonging to the Hudson Bay, the Gulf, or to open sea drainage. With unimportant exceptions farther west, the Red River of the North carries the contribution of the United States area to Hudson Bay waters. The open sea streams are all of moderate length and volume except the Saint Lawrence, which should be viewed as rising in Minnesota, although locally expanded into lakes of exceptional size. (For details concerning these bodies of water, the reader is referred to the article Great Lakes.) All the streams which enter the lakes from the United States are relatively small. Their courses are short, which is equal to saying that the line of water partings between the Laurentian and Mississippi basins is close to the lakes. The divide is also nearly everywhere quite inconspicuous. The streams have thus small capacity for transporting land waste into the lakes. Such waste as reaches the lakes rests in them, a condition from which results the exceeding clearness of Niagara, or of the Saint Lawrence waters that pass the Thousand Islands.
The open Atlantic streams, draining that part of the country which is historically oldest, and being often tidal, have a fame and a commercial value out of all proportion to their size. To begin with the rivers of New England, its conspicuous streams, the Penobscot, Kennebec, Merrimac, Connecticut, and Housatonic, are most of them entered by the tides for many miles. The Merrimac and Connecticut, above tide water, are types of many New England rivers which are interrupted by rapids due to glacial blockade, thus furnishing a great store of water power.
New York is composite in drainage. The Hudson, with the Mohawk, drains much of its central and eastern lands, but is chiefly important for its tidal course of 150 miles, with great harborage at its mouth, and an open gateway to the west from the head of tide water. The Genesee, Black, and other rivers carry to the Saint Lawrence much of the run-off of northern and western New York. The Susquehanna, the Delaware, and the Mississippi take nearly all the remainder of New York waters. In a most anomalous manner, due to glacial change of slope, the Allegheny gathers for the Gulf of Mexico waters that fall within a few miles of Lake Erie.
The Delaware, Susquehanna, and Potomac are all important rivers which rise in the Catskill-Allegheny Plateau and find their way across the various mountain ridges of the Appalachian system by water gaps, and enter bays due to sinking of land and invasion of old valleys by the salt waters. In the plateau, where the strata are horizontal, the streams are dendritic, or finger-like, in arrangement. Within the mountain belt, the streams are in parts longitudinal, and in part transverse. By thus running between the ridges and cutting through them in water gaps, a rectangular or trellised drainage is formed which is widely found in the Appalachian region. The northern Appalachian waters thus flow mainly to the open Atlantic. In the south, however, or beyond the Potomac, the coastal rivers head in the eastern edge of the mountains, while the Kanawha and the Tennessee, with their branches, head far across the mountains and carry the waters to the Ohio River. The great core of the southern Appalachians, in western North Carolina, so convenient, it would seem, to the sea, is thus drained by a circuitous route into the Gulf of Mexico. The entire belt of Appalachian uplands has for the most part arrived at the stage of mature dissection, with abundant valleys, sunk from 500 to 1500 feet below the prevailing level of the uplands.
Many rivers of local importance rise on the eastern slope of the Blue Ridge, and cross the Piedmont Plateau and the Coastal Plain to the sea. Such are the James and other rivers of Virginia, the Roanoke, Cape Fear, Great Pedee, Savannah, and Altamaha of the Carolinas and Georgia. The rivers of Florida are mainly small, but have important tidal courses. The other Gulf drainage is overshadowed in magnitude by the Mississippi. The greater streams aside from this are the Chattahoochee, Alabama, and Tombigbee on the east, and the Colorado (of Texas) and Brazos on the west, and the international Rio Grande, rising in Colorado and New Mexico.
The Mississippi River. See Mississippi River.
Pacific Drainage. The Rocky Mountains in Colorado offer the most compact source of important drainage within the United States. To the south they send forth the Rio Grande. To the east flows the Arkansas, while to the north and east pass important branches of the Missouri. From the southwest issues the San Juan, while farther north the Grand, White, and Yampa rivers leave the State. All these join the Colorado River, and thus introduce us to the most southerly of rivers in the United States that reach the Pacific Ocean. Some of the chief facts concerning this river have been given in the description of the topography of the region. Its ultimate sources are in the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming. Thence it crosses the plateau of the southeastern part of that State and passes by a great gorge through the heart of the Uinta Mountain Range. It is here known as the Green River, but becomes the Colorado after receiving the Grand. Thence it threads its greater cañons and crosses the low desert region to the Gulf of California. Not far from its mouth it receives the Gila from the east. The only remaining master stream is the Columbia, with its widespread sources in the Rocky Mountains. These largely belong to its tributary, the Snake River, which after passing the lava plateaus joins the trunk stream in southern Washington. The Columbia has an important tidal course before it enters the ocean, and this and the Saint Lawrence are the only rivers of the United States which receive great accessions to their waters from foreign territory.
The foregoing review has shown how various are the rivers of the United States in their physical features. The Hudson may be taken as the type of that great number of streams, especially on the Atlantic side, which have a tidal course. Within the glaciated district most rivers show serious inequalities in their beds, causing innumerable rapids and waterfalls. Such concentration of descent does not occur elsewhere, save in the mountainous belts. The greatness and destructiveness of floods depends upon rainfall, gradient, the porosity of the rocks or soil, and other features. Thus the Ohio has steep slopes, an impervious bed, and a moist climate, when compared with the Missouri taken as a whole. In its long course across the plains the latter loses by seepage, by evaporation, and by abstraction of water for irrigation.
The rivers exhibit great diversity in relation to human uses. The Merrimac and many other streams within the glacial belt are mainly useful for manufacturing or for water supply. The Mississippi is chiefly of value as a highway, while the Hudson combines transportation, water and ice supply, and the furnishing of power. The Colorado is thus far almost purely scenic in its relation to man, arousing interest by the origin and magnificence of its cañons. A new era of utilization of these American river waters is now being entered upon. See Irrigation.
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY.|
Lowlands, below 1,000 Feet elevation, are shown in Green.Highlands, above 1,000 Feet elevation, are shown in Buff.
Climate. The greater part of the area of the United States proper has a climate pertaining to the temperate zone. The average annual temperatures vary from somewhat less than 50° on the northern border to 75° in the extreme southeast. The average temperature for July is about 60° on the northern border and for January it is about 20°. The whole country is exposed to much greater annual oscillations of temperature than occur in Europe. The average of the absolute maximum temperatures is as high as 115° to 120° in the drier portions of Texas and Arizona, and the average minimum falls as low as -40° in northern Minnesota. The climate of the United States is controlled very largely by its characteristic winds. In January these are from the west, but in July southeast winds prevail in the Southern States, which penetrate up the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountain range, but finally turn eastward with the westerly winds of the northern portion of this region.
The storm centres that pass across the country originate almost equally on the Pacific Ocean and on the Atlantic. Those that approach from the Pacific move southeastwardly into Kansas and Nebraska and then turn eastward over the lake region; those that come from the Atlantic move westward among the West Indies and turn northward toward the Lower Lake Region; a certain number originate on the southeastern slope of the Rocky Mountains and move northeastward to the lake region. The lake region is, therefore, on the average the stormiest portion of the continent, and indeed of the whole Northern Hemisphere. The passage of every storm centre is accompanied by a shifting of the winds from warm southerly to cold northwesterly, and this, consequently, gives to the interior of the United States its extreme variability of climate, so that even the southern extremity of the country scarcely belongs to the tropical zone. The cold air that flows in behind the storm centres is very dry and the sky is quite clear. Thus originate the so-called anti-cyclones or cold waves which follow each other rapidly, moving southeastwardly toward the Gulf of Mexico, while the areas of low pressure or cyclones move northeast over and beyond the lake region. The absolute annual range of temperature is therefore greatest in the interior of the country, being about 150° in the upper portion of the Missouri Valley and diminishing to 60° in the southern part of Florida and the northwestern part of Oregon. The suddenness with which the air temperature falls is an important consideration from many points of view. Thus changes of 20° in twenty-four hours occur far more frequently in the lake region than in the Ohio Valley, and there again oftener than on the southern coasts.
The average date of killing frosts in the spring and autumn determines the average length of the growing season for most of the important crops. The autumnal date is September 1st for the region from North Dakota to Lake Huron, and October 1st for the region from Colorado to Pennsylvania and northeastward along the New England coast. The latest spring frosts occur on May 15th from Idaho to Lake Superior and February 15th along the south Atlantic and east Gulf coasts. The growing season may be considered as the interval between the last frost of spring and the first of autumn, or it may also be defined as the season within which the average daily temperature does not fall below 40°. (See Maps accompanying article Frost.) From this point of view the growing season diminishes as one goes northward and amounts to about 120 days at the northern border of the United States. By a natural process of selection, stimulated by culture, plants that formerly required this length of time for maturity are now pushing northward beyond the borders into Canadian regions where the growing period is as much as twenty days shorter. Mr. Pennywitt of the Weather Bureau has published, in the Monthly Weather Review for February, 1901, three charts showing the dates on which the normal daily temperature at any place equals the annual mean at that place. There are two such dates for each station, dividing the year into the warmer half and the colder half. These are not quite the dates of frost, but generally come earlier than the frost in spring and later in autumn. His chart reveals the interesting fact that in general over the United States the warmer portion of the year is decidedly longer in duration than the colder season. This difference is greatest on the eastern slope of the Rocky Mountain range, and increases from thirty days in Texas and Kansas to forty-eight days on the northern border of Montana and probably increases somewhat as one goes north into Canada.
One of the most notable features in the climate of the United States is the great contrast between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. This is due to the fact that the cold, dry air following each area of low pressure is confined in its movement southward between the Rocky Mountains and the Appalachian ranges. Occasionally dry, cold air descends from the north or northeast upon ‘The Great Valley’ of California with disastrous consequences, but in general the Pacific coast is under the influence of south and west winds, which bring abundant winter rains to northern California, Oregon, and Washington without severe cold weather. On the Atlantic coast the winter rains and snows are followed by very cold weather. The contrast between the mean temperatures on the immediate coast of the United States in January and July are shown in the following table. The temperatures here given are as read off on charts of isotherms, and refer to locations on the land at sea level near the shore. These temperatures are controlled largely by the prevailing winds and the adjacent oceans.
|30||58||56||+ 2||79||70||+ 9|
|24||71||68||+ 3||81||80||+ 1|
Of course a similar great contrast prevails between the temperatures on the east side of Asia and west side of Europe, but nothing like this occurs in the Southern Hemisphere, owing to the presence of the great southern ocean and the small area and low altitude of the lands.
Another striking peculiarity in the climate of the United States is the great contrasts of dryness and rainfall. The heaviest precipitation and also a fairly uniform humidity prevail on the coast of Oregon and Washington; next to this are the humidity and rainfall of the coasts of Florida and the adjacent States. Throughout the Mississippi Valley and along the Atlantic coast from Cape Hatteras to Nova Scotia there are great fluctuations in moisture and evaporation. On the average the driest portion of the continent extends from southern California and Arizona eastward over the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountain region. Not only is the rainfall here a minimum, but the humidity of the atmosphere is also very small and the proportion of the clear sky very large. Yuma, in Arizona, Santa Fe, in New Mexico, and Pueblo, in Colorado, have mean annual relative humidities of 43, 45, and 46 per cent. respectively. The amount of evaporation from the soil is correspondingly large in these regions, and artificial irrigation is quite essential for successful agriculture. Even the summits of the mountains of this portion of the continent show but little permanent snow, and that in sheltered spots. What would remain on the ground in an ordinary, moist climate is rapidly evaporated in this dry air. See map showing average annual relative humidity in the United States, accompanying Humidity. See Meteorology; Climate; Storm.
Flora. The flora of the United States, when compared with that of Europe, is characterized by a far greater variety and wealth of species. This is especially noticeable in the trees, of which there are about 400 species in the United States, representing nearly all the European genera besides a considerable number of genera unknown in Europe, such as the hickories, magnolias, tulip tree, sassafras, liquidambar, and sequoia. Within the United States one finds also great differences between the various sections of the country, not only the natural differences due to climate as one passes from south to north, but also still more remarkable differences between the eastern and western sections. The latter are of course due in part to climatic variations, but in a large measure they are also due to the geological and topographical isolation of the East and West. Many of the most common trees, shrubs, and herbs of the Eastern States are unknown on the Pacific Coast, some of them being not even represented by cognate species. On the other hand, most of the characteristic species in the West are absent in the East. It is in the East that one finds the greatest local variety in vegetation, hundreds of widely different forms growing in luxuriant profusion side by side within narrow areas, while in the West there is much greater uniformity, immense areas being almost monopolized by a single species or at least a single type. The Eastern section is also the great forested area of the country. West of the Mississippi the forests rapidly disappear as one approaches the Great Plains, and reappear only on the mountains. Indeed, in the entire Western half of the country, with the exception of the northern part of the Pacific Coast, the forests are confined to the mountain slopes above a certain altitude, all the great valleys and lowlands being treeless except where irrigated by natural or artificial means.
Considering the country somewhat more in detail, one finds that it has been variously divided into floral regions. Under one of the most convenient and widely accepted systems the country is treated as belonging to eight such regions. Two of these are tropical, southern Florida and southern Texas, the latter being regarded botanically as a part of Mexico; two are subtropical or austral, the Southeastern Coast Region including the coast States from Texas to Virginia, and the Californian Region; the remaining four are temperate or boreal in character, namely, the Appalachian Region, including all the northeastern States north of the Southeastern Coast Region and east of the Mississippi; the Prairie or Great Plains Region, stretching from central Texas northward between the Mississippi and Rocky Mountains; the Rocky Mountain Region, included between the Great Plains and the Sierra Nevada-Cascade Range; and the Cascade Mountain Region, including the northern half of the Pacific Slope.
The flora of southern Florida is closely related to that of the West Indies and more remotely to that of South America. It consists largely of mangrove and cypress swamps and palm woods, with a profusion of vines and epiphytes, and including about 400 tropical species not found in any other part of the country. Southern Texas is a semi-desert area in which the mesquite and cacti predominate. The Southeastern Coast Region is characterized by large belts of pine forests in which the chief species are the long-leaf, short-leaf, and loblolly pine, as well as junipers, cedars, arbor-vitæ, and swamp cypress. The palmetto, the northernmost American palm, ranges as far as North Carolina. Other characteristic plants are the magnolia, live oak, and a number of evergreen angiosperms, as well as hickories and other trees common to the North.
The Appalachian Region has probably the most varied and luxuriant vegetation of all regions within the strictly temperate zones. This is due partly to the abundant rainfall coupled with the great and prolonged summer heat, partly to the fact that in this region a large number of Miocene plants survive side by side with the more recently evolved species. This is the great region of deciduous forests, and the one which contains nearly all the representatives of the European genera of trees, the oak, maple, ash, chestnut, elm, walnut, linden, poplar, beech, birch, etc., besides the strictly American trees, among which the tulip tree (Liriodendron tulipifera) is perhaps the finest and most characteristic example. Coniferous forests in this region are chiefly confined to higher ground, and the higher Appalachian Mountains have almost a typical Canadian flora, with their forests of hemlock, white pine, fir, mountain ash, and yellow birch. The undergrowth is also richly developed in this region, both in the mountains and lowland, and displays a wealth of vines and exquisite flowers, such as rhododendrons, honeysuckles, mountain-laurels, viburnums, and dogwoods. In the Great Plains Region the prevailing type of vegetation is the herbaceous, with grass predominating, but variegated with asters, sunflowers, and a number of other similar plants, while cottonwood and willows grow along the streams. In the Western plains the grasses give place to the sage-brush, and in the South, on the Llano Estacado, and in southern New Mexico and Arizona, to yuccas and cacti. In the Rocky Mountain Region the flora of the drier plains is extended into the valleys and lower plateaus, while the mountains are covered with coniferous forests. See paragraph Flora, under Rocky Mountains.
The Californian Region, being protected by the lofty Sierras from the immigration of Eastern plants, has a flora unique in its numerous endemic genera and species. The forests, which, except in the north, are confined to the mountain slopes or the great central river valley, are almost wholly coniferous, and are especially remarkable for their gigantic trees. The giant sequoia, which grows nowhere else, ranks with the Australian eucalyptus as the largest forest tree on the globe. Enormous size is attained also by the redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), the sugar pine (Pinus Lambertiana), the Douglas spruce, and the giant cedar. The non-coniferous trees in California are not numerous, and are largely evergreen. There are several oaks, but few of the other Eastern trees. The Cascade Mountain Region is a northward continuation of the Californian Region, but differs from it in the absence of the sequoia and of the evergreen angiosperms, while deciduous trees are still more rare. The forests are of yet greater extent than in California, and reach down to the coast. The Douglas spruce, Western hemlock, noble fir, and giant cedar reach here their finest development. See Forestry.
Fauna. The fauna of the United States is an integral part of that of the Nearctic Province (q.v.), and is fully representative of that of North America described in the paragraph Fauna under America. (See also Distribution of Animals; and Fauna under Rocky Mountains.) With the exception of a few strictly boreal species, such as the musk-ox (q.v.), almost all the genera and species of North American animals of every kind are represented within the boundaries of the United States and its adjacent waters; and most of the Arctic absentees are found in Alaska (q.v.). Reference to the articles cited above and to such articles as Bear, Beaver, Bison, Dinosauria, Eagle, Extinct Animals, Fur-Bearing Animals, Fossil, Grouse, Horse, Oyster, Pronghorn, Puma, Quail, Rattlesnake, Salmon, Skunk, Turkey, Whale, Whitefish, and others, will give a conspectus of the fauna of the country.
Geology and Soils. North America, like other continents, combines very ancient areas with those that are geologically young. The primitive framework of the continent was drawn somewhat upon the lines of the existing mountain systems of the east and west, forecasting the Appalachian and Cordilleran uplands and the Mississippi lowlands of to-day. The oldest rock systems are known as Archæan and Algonkian. They are represented to the northward by an irregular V-shaped area inclosing Hudson Bay between its arms, and resting its blunted apex upon the north border of the Great Lakes. Extensions of this early nucleus are found along the Appalachians to Alabama, and consist of hard crystalline rocks of igneous and metamorphic origin, granites, gneisses, schists, marbles, and quartzites being among the common kinds. Such areas are the Adirondacks, some tracts in New England, the Highlands of the Lower Hudson and of New Jersey, South Mountain in Pennsylvania, with the Blue Ridge and Unakas of the Southern States. Other primitive masses are found in Wisconsin and Minnesota and form a straggling archipelago in the West, as in the core of the Black Hills, along the axis of the present Rocky Mountain Range, and in the Wasatch and Sierran regions. It must not be thought, however, that the present boundaries of these belts of ancient rock mark the shores of the ancient islands, but the lands now belonging to the United States began thus in narrow strips and patches, east and west.
The next younger but still very old formations belong to the Paleozoic era. This interval of geological time was very long, and includes an extended succession of periods, with their subdivisions or epochs. The rocks of the Cambrian, or earliest of these periods, are mainly sandstones, conglomerates, and shales, and are found in limited outcrops about the borders of the Archæan and Algonkian. The Ordovician, Silurian, Devonian, and Carboniferous formations, on the other hand, cover wide areas, especially in the Eastern United States. They constitute the bed-rocks of a region extending from the Archæan axis of the Appalachians, beyond the Mississippi River, reaching into eastern Nebraska, central Kansas, and far into Texas. From the Great Lake region they are found southward to middle Georgia and Alabama, but do not appear along the Mississippi south of the Ohio River. Thus at the close of the Paleozoic era the territory of the United States was a semi-continent on the east, sending lobate areas southward, with the Mississippi embayment between them. There was also rock accumulation and land growth in the Cordilleran region, but it still held a group of islands rather than a continental area. The largest western lands of Paleozoic age are in the region of the Great Basin, but the regions of the Colorado plateaus and of the coastal Pacific States were still sea, the Rocky Mountain belt was a chain of islands, and an unhindered sea swept from the tropical waters to the Arctic.
The Paleozoic era closed, in North America, with what is known as the Appalachian revolution, that is, with the disturbances which created the great series of folds which now extend from eastern New York to central Alabama. There had long been mountains in the east, as the Adirondacks and Blue Ridge. What their height may have been is not known. During Paleozoic time also the Green and Berkshire ranges of New England were formed. But there were then no mountains west of the Blue Ridge. During all the periods of the Paleozoic era, the waste of the older lands on the east and north was swept into an interior sea that ranged from central New York far to the west and southwest. Thus originated the sandstones, shales, and limestones of the Cambrian and succeeding periods, to which reference has been made. Along the old Appalachian border these formations acquired a thickness of several miles. In the mountain-building which ensued, these thick beds were crumpled and built into a range of high mountains. These mountains, having wasted away during the long periods which have since elapsed, leave to the United States the low ranges found now in Pennsylvania, and west of the Blue Ridge in Virginia and more southern States. With the building of the mountains there was a general uplift in the east, which permanently banished the sea waters from the eastern and central States of the Mississippi basin, except in the south.
During the Mesozoic era and the succeeding Tertiary period, the additions to the land areas of the east were confined to the Atlantic border and the Gulf region. From the enlarged lands of the east, following the Appalachian uplift, materials were available for further extension. In the west the growth was interior as well as on the border, and these later times are marked by the filling in of partially inclosed seas, and by retreat of waters, due to massive continental uplift. Thus gradually the western interior sea of the Great Plains region disappeared (as did that of the Colorado basin), and the Pacific shore line was pushed to its present position.
Some of the important episodes of Mesozoic and Tertiary continental evolution may now be noted. The eastern border region has a series of areas of red and brown shale and sandstone, of Triassic age. These formations underlie the lowlands of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Another belt extends from the Palisades of the Hudson into Virginia, and there are other and smaller areas. Associated with these rocks are the lava sheets which form the Orange Mountains of New Jersey, the Palisades of the Hudson, and the Mount Holyoke range of Massachusetts. These rocks are known as the Newark formation and were not accumulated in the open sea, but in brackish or fresh waters, in basins whose character is little known. The Cretaceous and Tertiary beds of the Atlantic border form southern New Jersey, and the outside lowlands of all the States southward to Florida, and make the coastal plain of this region. They slant gently down and become continuous with the beds that lie below the marginal waters of the Atlantic. Owing to their comparative recency, they are often partially or wholly unconsolidated and occur as sands, gravels, clays, and marls. But they may consist also of well-indurated sandstones and limestones.
Similar statements may be made concerning the formations and the lands that border the Gulf. Here belongs the entire State of Florida, which is already given. It is low not because of denudation, but because of gentle and limited uplift of the undisturbed and youthful strata which lie beneath its surface. As has been intimated, the ancient Mississippi discharged, not far from the present mouth of the Ohio, into a gulf that thus lay between south-reaching lands on the east and west. Its successive burdens of land waste served gradually to fill the embayment, and its delta reached more and more to the south, encroaching, as it is still, upon the Gulf. Mesozoic deposits of Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous age are found along the eastern base of the Rocky Mountains, where they are upturned at various angles, as in the vertical or highly inclined strata of the Garden of the Gods. Eastward, at a little remove from the mountains, these beds, which have yielded perhaps the most remarkable series of fossil vertebrate remains that have been obtained in any country, become horizontal and are often covered with still younger stratified formations, which all together make the underlying masses of the Great Plains. The breaking and upturning of the strata seen in the Rocky Mountain foothills points to the main uplift of these mountains which took place at the close of the Mesozoic era.
After the Rocky Mountain revolution, the Great Plains area ceased to be a region of salt-water deposition and was characterized by swamps, and great lakes of brackish or fresh water. The Laramie formation belongs to this era of low-lying lands in that region when the sea was excluded, and some of the largest coal deposits of the West were accunmlated in the marshes of the time.
Over many thousands of square miles in Colorado, Kansas, Wyoming, and Nebraska are sheets of incoherent or partly consolidated gravels, sands, and clays, which have usually been attributed to sedimentation in such lakes. It is probable, however, that in part, at least, these beds are due to torrents carrying down enormous volumes of wash from the moimtains and distributing it in their wanderings over the plains. Present conditions were not approached in this region until the late Tertiary. By that time the entire belt, including the plains and Rocky Mountains, had received a massive uplift, by which the lakes were drained, and the plains given an eastward slant, from altitudes of 5000 to 6000 feet at the base of the mountains, to the low prairies west of the Mississippi River.
The rocks of the Colorado plateaus consist of some thousands of feet of sedimentary beds of Mesozoic and younger rocks, overlying a Paleozoic and Archæan foundation. The Colorado River furnishes a great natural section, since for some distance it has sunk its channel through the Paleozoic strata and cut far down into the basal granites. Like the Great Plains, it was long a region of marine deposition, followed by lakes and streams as the lands emerged. Here, too, great and widespread uplifts took place, in which the strains were so great as to produce profound fractures and dislocations or faults, and attended at times by large outflows of lava. These upflows sometimes stopped below the surface, and domed up the overlying strata, making a kind of mountain known as laccolithic, of which the Henry Mountains, in Utah, are the type. Largely by such faults, running in a north and south direction, the ancient strata of the Great Basin have been cut into large blocks, and so tilted that the higher edges of the blocks make the parallel ranges of Utah and Nevada.
The initial uplifts of the Sierran mountain belt were made in Mesozoic time, and the strata involved were formed from the waste of the older lands in the present Great Basin region to the eastward. But it was not until late Tertiary time that the entire block or mass of the Sierras was lifted to a great height and tilted to the west. In connection with this uplift a lofty fault scarp developed, which now forms the steep eastern front of the mountains. This crest, therefore, is toward the east, and the principal drainage is down the gentler western slope into the valley of California. The Sierras continue northward as the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and Washington. The Willamette Valley in Oregon and the Puget Sound Valley in Washington are the analogues of the valley of California, and they are separated from the ocean by a young range of mountains, known in its various parts as the Coast Range, the Klamath Mountains, and the Olympic Mountains.
Thus it appears that the Western United States have had a composite history. It began with island nuclei which grew by sedimentation and uplift. The several great ranges of mountains mark several periods of folding, faulting, and uplift, while both mountains and plains rose by massive and wide-ranging or continental movements, thus adding to the height of the mountains and making the plains into plateaus of from 3000 to 8000 feet in altitude. With these disturbances, especially in Tertiary times, were the most extensive outflows of lava of which this continent shows any record. These are found either as remnant sheets and volcanic necks, or as vast sheets scarcely changed since their outflow. They occur in nearly every Cordilleran State, as on both sides of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, in New Mexico, in Utah, in Mount Shasta, and the great cones of the Cascades, and especially in the lava plateaus of the Snake and Columbia rivers in Idaho, Washington, and Oregon. As a lingering episode of their interior volcanic energy we may, perhaps, recognize the geyser phenomena of the Yellowstone Park.
Through all the periods which have been passed in review, the process of land sculpture was active and all varieties of relief have been shown, even in the same area, in successive cycles of denudation and uplift. Thus New England is everywhere mountainous in structure, although much of its surface is now reduced to hills, and to valleys whose bottoms are not far above base level. The Connecticut Valley, as it now exists, is rather a product of downwear along its course than of uplift on its sides. The same is true of the Hudson, and, indeed, of all the valleys of the Appalachian region. Much of the Archæan core of this Eastern mountain system is well worn, like the coastal parts of New England. Such a region is the Piedmont belt of hills and low mountains lying between the Blue Ridge and the coastal plain in the South Atlantic States. So, too, the Appalachian Mountains of post-Paleozoic age were perhaps raised to Alpine heights, but have been greatly reduced and given their present relief of ridge and valley by processes of wasting and the survival of more resistant formations.
The strata of the Mississippi basin have for the most part never been raised to considerable heights, and the streams have not had sufficient vigor to be the instruments of largest denudation. But among the mountains and plateaus of the Cordilleran region the land forms owe their reliefs to long continued denudation, conditioned by the composition and structure of the rocks. For example, in the Grand Cañon region, or more broadly, everywhere among the Colorado plateaus, vast thicknesses of the upper strata have been bodily removed. Those that remain present south-facing escarpments of ragged outline, and their masses are in turn profoundly dissected by the swift river and its branches. The true measure of denudation is not the cañons, however, but the amount of stripping that has been accomplished over the whole region. Similarly, the lava sheets have been deeply channeled, as by the Snake River, or have often been nearly removed, and volcanic cones are in all stages of decay, from the little marred Mount Shasta to the ‘necks’ that mark the complete disappearance of overlying cones.
The principal reliefs were given to the country prior to the glacial invasion. But within the field of glacial movement important changes were effected, and in some cases the combined effect of the wearing of hill and mountain tops, and of the filling of valleys, was to diminish the total relief by several hundred feet. The territory affected includes all of New England, the Middle States into northern New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and the Central States to lines not far from the Ohio and Missouri rivers. Eastern Nebraska was included, with much of the Dakotas, Montana, and the more northern Cordilleras. Small remnant glaciers are still found in the high Sierras, on the volcanic cones of the Cascades, and in Montana and Colorado. The general effects of the ice sheet were the grinding and transport of rocky waste, coarse and fine, the commingling of this material with the preëxistent soils, the formation of moraines and other bodies of drift during retreat, the blockading of ancient valleys causing innumerable changes of drainage, and the formation of thousands of lakes.
Since the departure of the ice, or during post-glacial time, many of the smaller or more shallow lakes have been filled by sediment, or by deposits of vegetable origin, sometimes forming beds of peat. In the larger lakes deltas and marshy areas have been formed in the same manner. The interrupted streams have resumed their flow along the lowest line of levels that they could find, and in so doing have often cut through the veneer of drift and worn deeply into the underlying rock. This is the origin of most of the gorges of the Northern States. They are young, post-glacial valleys, and the old, buried channels are often to be found not far away. These conditions have not only produced striking scenic results, in the gorges and waterfalls of the Northern States, but have created nearly all the available water power of the same region. Before the ice invasion many streams flowed at lower levels, in the deep and mature valleys of the time. But the obstruction of these valleys has compelled the streams to flow at greater altitudes, and the rocky masses and spurs encountered in their downcutting have caused a concentration of descent in rapids or falls, and thus have made the streams a source of power, while at the same time obstructing the otherwise open ways of commerce.
The soils of the country may roughly be divided into two classes by virtue of their origin. Outside of the glacial region they are known as residual soils, being in the main the product of the local rock disintegrating in place. In this case the more soluble minerals, such as calcium carbonate, have largely been removed. The chief movements of such soils have taken place along the course of rivers and by means of them. The soils of the Lower Mississippi are an illustration of this latter phase, having been gathered from all parts of its basin. The remaining soils are glacial. The ice sheet invaded the residual soils of pre-glacial time, plowed them up, pushed them forward greater or less distances, and thoroughly mingled them with materials often coarse, and mechanically derived from the rocks living in the track of the glacier. These soils, therefore, partake of the variety of the numerous rock masses from which they have been derived.
Fisheries. The United States fishing industry originated in New England shortly after its settlement, and was gaining considerable prominence until England attempted to place restrictions upon it. It also was seriously damaged by the War of 1812, as well as by subsequent conflicts between American and British interests. The extermination of certain species of fish has at various times seemed probable, due to a lack of definite knowledge regarding the habits of the animals, and the fact that there were no limitations placed upon the number which could be captured. Measures have of late years been enacted which to a large extent have obviated these difficulties. (See Fishing Laws.) The United States Fish Commission, by its establishment of hatcheries and its investigations and experiments, also, has aided greatly in the development of the industry. (See Fish; Fisheries; and Fish Culture.) The chief centres of fisheries are naturally those States bordering upon the Atlantic. Pacific, and Gulf coasts and Great Lakes, the Mississippi Valley, and Alaska. The following table shows the status of the industry for the years 1880, 1890, and 1900, the figures for 1900 being estimates based on the latest reports of the United States Fish Commission:
|YEAR|| Number of
In the New England States the principal products are cod, halibut, and mackerel. Massachusetts leads in the value of products, while Maine has the greatest number of persons engaged in the industry, Maryland ranked first among the Middle Atlantic States which are especially concerned in oyster and shad fishing. Shad and oysters are also the leading fish products of the South Atlantic States. The Gulf States produce oysters and sponges. Among the Gulf States Florida holds first place in the fishing industry. Of the fish output of the Pacific States, about half is represented by salmon. Herring, lake trout, and yellow perch are the leading products of the Great Lakes division. The period of greatest development in this region was from 1880 to 1885, when the number engaged in the industry and the value of the production increased 100 per cent. The yield of the Mississippi Valley exceeds in quantity and nearly equals in value the combined production of the remaining interior waters of the United States, except the Great Lakes. Buffalo-fish, catfish, and German cod are especially plentiful. Alaska is the centre of the furseal industry, and is also noted for its large number of cod, halibut, and other deep-sea fish. (For further details, see the several State articles: the articles on Whale, Sealing, etc.; and also articles on the various fish species: Cod, Mackerel, Menhaden, etc.) The exports of fish and fish products have greatly increased in value since 1870, but during the period 1890 to 1902 they remained practically stationary. The value of the exports in 1902 was $7,705,065. Europe was the destination of over half the output. Canned salmon formed the largest single item. The value of the imports of fisheries has increased from $5,457,785 in 1892 to $8,527,097 in 1902. The largest part of the import trade is with Canada. The main items of importation are pickled herring and dried cod in the cured list, while lobster is the chief product in the class of fresh fish. In the census year 1900 there were 348 establishments concerned in fish curing, packing, and canning. The total value of their product was $22,253,740. The curing of cod, herring, and mackerel, the canning of sardines in the New England States, and salmon-packing in the Pacific States are the leading fish interests in the United States.
Mining. Prior to the nineteenth century the mining industry in the United States was quite insignificant, and it was not until nearly 1850 that it began to be important. Since that period the industry has developed with a rapidity equal to that of manufactures and transportation. It is significant that the production of the mines constitutes over one-half of the total freight tonnage handled by the railroads. In 1902 the United States had advanced to first rank in the production of most of the useful minerals, and the total value of the combined mineral ouput was far greater than that of any other country. The growth of the industry since 1880 is seen in the following table:
| Non-metallic |
To the above should be added an unspecified, sum amounting in value to $6,000,000 in 1880, and to $1,000,000 in each of the other years given. The total mining output for 1901 was valued at $1,092,224,380. The United States probably has more mineral lands in proportion to its total area than any other country. Nearly every mineral that is needed in the arts is mined.
Coal. Coal is the most widely distributed mineral and is far in advance of any other in the annual value of its output. It is regularly mined in thirty States. (For localization of coal areas, see article Coal.) The area of the coal fields, not including those occurring in the Rocky Mountains and Pacific Coast States, is about 220,000 square miles. Of this only a small portion consists of the anthracite variety, which is almost wholly confined to the middle-eastern portion of Pennsylvania. Authorities have not attempted to estimate the probable duration of the supply of bituminous coal, but it has been estimated that the anthracite would last at the present rate of consumption one hundred years. Bituminous coal mining began regularly in 1750, while anthracite mining did not begin until fifty years later. The production of each was very small for a number of years. The rapid growth of the industry did not begin until after the Civil War. From the following table it will be seen that the output of bituminous coal has doubled for each decade since 1870. The output of anthracite was five times as great at the end of that period as at the beginning. The total production of coal in short tons in 1870 was 33,003,315; in 1880, 73,647,997; in 1890, 156,073,611; in 1900, 293,298,516. The following table shows, in short tons, the production of coal in the ten leading States in the years 1870, 1880, 1890, and 1901.
In 1866 Great Britain produced six and one-half times as much coal as the United States. In 1899 it was surpassed for the first time by the United States, and in 1901 the United States led by 42,790,730 tons. American coal is more easily mined than the coal of most countries, and the product sells at the pit cheaper than pit coal sells in any other part of the world. The total value of bituminous coal in 1901 was $236,201,899, and of anthracite $112,504,020. It will be seen from the above table that the Appalachian region has always contributed the bulk of the product. In spite of the enormous absolute gain in Pennsylvania, its relative importance has declined. West Virginia and Alabama are two of the fastest developing coal-mining States. The greater development of the Appalachian region is not due to the greater abundance of resources, although the quality of the Eastern product is generally superior to that of the West. It is due rather to convenience to the market. The thickly populated region to the north and east of Pennsylvania is without coal, and a large part of the anthracite product is consumed in that region for household purposes. Pennsylvania is also the most convenient coal-producing State so far as nearness to the industrial centre of the country is concerned, and a large part of its bituminous product is consumed in its own large iron manufacturing and railroad establishments. Its proximity to the shipping facilities of the Ohio River early gave it a command over the markets reached by the Ohio and Mississippi waterways. The want of a local market and the lack of railroad facilities have been against the development of the southern Appalachian coal region.
Petroleum. The production of petroleum began in western Pennsylvania in 1859. The United States soon became the chief source of the world's supply of this article. The recent development in Russia, however, has since 1897 placed that country ahead of the United States in rank. The production of the country increased slowly to 6,293,194 barrels in 1872, and then more rapidly to 45,823,572 barrels in 1890, and 69,389,194 barrels in 1901, the value in the last year being $66,417,335. The output in Pennsylvania reached its maximum in 1891, when it amounted to 33,009,230 barrels. Since that year the product has declined in that State until in 1901 it was only 12,625,378 barrels. About 1886 Ohio came into prominence in the production of petroleum, the output advancing rapidly to 17,740,301 barrels in 1891, and 21,648,083 barrels in 1901. The petroleum industry began early in West Virginia, but did not develop rapidly until in the last decade of the nineteenth century, the output increasing from 492,578 barrels in 1890 to 14,177,126 in 1901. The industry also developed slowly in California until 1899, increasing its output more than twofold in the following two years, the product in 1901 being 8,786,330 barrels. The production in Indiana did not begin until 1889, but has advanced steadily until 1901, when it amounted to 5,757,086 barrels. The last State to develop its resources of petroleum is Texas, the output having advanced from 50 barrels in 1895 to 4,393,658 barrels in 1901. In 1902 and 1903 important discoveries were made in Louisiana which is destined to become a large producer of petroleum. See Map under Petroleum.
Natural Gas. Natural gas has been extensively exploited in some parts of the United States in recent years. It began to come into use in western Pennsylvania after 1875, and by 1880 the value of the product for that State was estimated at $19,282,375. The production then declined until its value was less than one-third this amount, but revived during the four years ending with 1901, the production in that year being valued at $12,688,161. After 1885 Ohio and Indiana began to produce large quantities, but there was an early decline in Ohio, the value of the output in that State in 1901 being only $2,147,215, while Indiana more than held its own, the value for the same year being $6,954,566. Since 1895 extensive developments have occurred in Kansas and West Virginia. The total value of the natural gas for 1901 was estimated at $27,067,500, an amount twice as great as the reported value for 1897.
Production of Iron in Long Tons
|Virginia and West Virginia||67,319||84,108||665,116||925,394|
Iron. Iron-mining ranks in importance next to coal, iron ore, like coal, being very widely distributed in the United States. In 1901 25 States reported its production. The mining of iron began in early colonial days and it was the first mineral mined in the country. However, it did not rise into importance until near the middle of the nineteenth century. From a total output in that year of 1,560,442 long tons there was a steady increase to 5,250,402 long tons in 1870, 16,276,584 long tons in 1890, and 28,887,479 long tons in 1901, valued at the mines in the last-named year at $49,256,245. The production of pig iron exceeded that of Great Britain for the first time in 1890, and in 1902 was over twice as great, and equaled the combined output of Great Britain, Germany, and Belgium. Of the total output in 1901 the red hematite variety amounted to 24,006,025 long tons, brown hematite 3,016,715, the magnetite 1,813,076, and the carbonate 51,663 long tons. The Lake Superior ore is almost wholly of red hematite variety. The Virginias are the largest producers of brown hematite. Pennsylvania and New Jersey yield the largest quantities of magnetite. Alabama and Tennessee produce considerable quantities of both red and brown hematite. Prior to 1870 Pennsylvania was the chief iron-producing State, and yielded in that year 44 per cent. of the total product. This and other States east of the Appalachian Mountains produced 62 per cent. of the output for that year. Since then other regions have so far outstripped Pennsylvania and other Eastern States that the latter have become comparatively unimportant, as will be seen in the preceding table.
To this should be added in 1901 Wisconsin and Tennessee each with over 700,000 tons, and Colorado and New Jersey with over 400,000 tons each. The development of the Lake Superior iron region is one of the most significant of recent industrial movements in the United States. It has been rendered possible largely through the advantage afforded by the Great Lakes for transportation. With the improvement of the canals connecting the lakes and the increased tonnage of vessels there has been a resulting decrease in freight rates and a greater impetus given to the mining industry. (See section on Transportation.) The industry has also profited by the improved methods adopted to facilitate the transfer of the ore in transit and especially by the use of machinery and the mining operations themselves. Furthermore, in the principal mining range—Mesabi—the ore is sometimes found so near the surface that with the removal of a few feet of earth it is mined by the open-pit method, the ore being scooped by huge steam shovels directly from the pit to the car. Probably in no other mines in the world does massive machinery play so great a part in mining operations and hand labor so little. Work in the Mesabi Range began in 1892, and the output grew rapidly until 1901, when it amounted to 9,303,541 long tons. The Southern iron region shares with the Northern Appalachian region in the advantage of having coal and limestone, two essentials in the reduction of the ore and found in close proximity to the ore itself. The South has the additional advantage of cheap labor, but it is under the disadvantage of having a limited local market.
Gold. The mining of gold on an extensive scale did not begin until the discovery of the placer gold in California in 1848. Between 1820 and 1830 some interest had developed in the States of Virginia and North and South Carolina, and for a number of years the output averaged about $1,000,000. In 1850, within two years after the California discoveries, the output was $50,000,000, and it did not fall below this figure until 1860. The product greatly exceeded in total value the value of all other minerals mined during that period. The gold output has ever since been large, though subject to fluctuation. As ordinary placer mining began to be unprofitable, quartz mining and hydraulic mining were resorted to, and California continued to be an important gold-mining State. The working of placer mines in Montana between 1860 and 1870 helped greatly to sustain the high record which California had earlier established. Montana being credited in one year (1866) with an output valued at $16,500,000. Considerable amounts were contributed also by other Western States, particularly by Nevada, owing to the Comstock Lode. With the exception of two years the annual output from 1871 to 1895 stood below $40,000,000. With the decline in the value of silver, attention was turned to gold. Improved methods of mining and of extracting the metal from the ores reduced the cost, and made possible the working of mines that were unprofitable under the old methods. Almost every Western mountain State has shared in the increase that raised the total output of gold from $33,000,000 in 1892 to $78,666,700 in 1901. Colorado took first rank in 1897 and in 1901 produced $27,693,500. California ranked second with an output of $16,891,400. South Dakota, Utah, and Arizona are three of the most rapidly developing sections. Alaska's (q.v.) contribution in 1901 was $6,885,700.
|COPYRIGHT, 1902, DODD, MEAD AND COMPANY.|
Silver. The development of silver-mining in the United States was almost as sudden as was that of gold. The production of this metal had been quite insignificant until the discovery of the Comstock Lode (q.v.) in western Nevada in 1859. The United States then became the leading silver-mining country of the world. The only other nation that now competes with it in this industry is Mexico. The output of the Comstock Lode declined rapidly after 1877. Nevertheless other mines were developing, and the silver product of the country continued to increase. The two largest contributors to this increase were the lead mines of Colorado and later the copper mines of Montana, large quantities of silver being extracted from both the lead and the copper ores. The total output, after falling to 49,501,122 ounces in 1894, had increased to 59,653,788 ounces in 1901, the commercial value of which at the mines was $35,792,200. Over one-third of the total product in the latter year was produced by Colorado, Montana and Utah yielding the greater part of the remainder.
Copper. Very little copper was mined prior to the development of the Lake Superior copper mines, which began operations in 1845. From that year the product has continued to increase steadily and rapidly. In 1866 the famous Calumet and Hecla mine was opened, and in 1890 its annual product had grown to 59,868,106 pounds, and in 1901 to 82,519,676 pounds. In 1880 Lake Superior ores furnished 82.2 per cent, of the total product of the country. About this time Arizona began to figure prominently in copper-mining, and a little later Montana also, the latter advancing so rapidly that in 1885 it produced 40.9 per cent. of the total product, as against 43.5 for Lake Superior and 13.7 for Arizona. Though the Lake Superior output continued to increase, its per cent. of the total had fallen to 25.9 in 1901. Montana more than doubled its output in the decade ending 1901, producing in that year 38.2 per cent. of the total product, while Arizona increased its output three and one-half times in the same period, having 21.7 per cent. of the total product in 1901. In the last years of that decade California and Utah rapidly advanced in their output of copper. The principal Montana mines are located at Butte, the largest mining centre in the world. The Anaconda mine produced, in 1901, 101,850,224 pounds, and the Boston and Montana nearly half that amount. In Arizona the Copper Queen yielded 39,781,133 pounds, and the United Verde 34,520,695 pounds. The total output for the United States increased from 27,000 long tons in 1880 to 115,966 in 1890, and 268,782 long tons in 1901, these amounts being respectively 17 per cent., 43 per cent., and 53 per cent, of the world's product. The value of the output in 1901 was $86,629,266. The United States is now the controlling factor in the world's copper markets.
Lead. The United States ranks first among the countries of the world in the production of lead. The mining of this mineral began as early as 1720 in the southeastern part of what is now Missouri, but it was not until a century later that operations assumed much importance. About 1825 mining began in the region which includes the adjacent corners of the three States of Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa, and later in southwestern Missouri and the adjacent corner of Kansas. For a number of years the mining of lead was, after iron, the most important metal-mining industry in the United States. It was mined in Utah in 1858. About 1875 work began on the Leadville Mine, Colorado. The Leadville ores are argentiferous, and the silver obtained in the early days of mining was of greater value than the lead itself. A little later argentiferous lead mines were developed in Idaho (Cœur d'Alêne) and other Cordilleran States. The total product of the country increased from 8000 short tons in 1830 to 30,000 in 1845, then decreased to 14,700 in 1865, since which time it increased almost steadily to 97,825 short tons in 1880, 178,554 in 1891, and 270,700 short tons in 1901, valued in the latter year at $23,280,200. Of the total only 57,898 short tons were soft lead, the remainder being desilverized lead. Idaho, Colorado, and Utah in the order named led in importance, the Mississippi Valley mines producing the greater part of the rest.
Zinc. Zinc-mining in the United States is limited chiefly to the lead-mining region of the Mississippi Valley above described. Its development began about 1850. Northern New Jersey at one time yielded considerable quantities of spelter, but its output has declined in recent years. The total product of zinc increased from 7343 short tons in 1873 to 63,683 in 1890 and 140,822 in 1901, giving the United States second rank among the countries of the world. The principal contributing States were Kansas, 74,240 short tons; Illinois, 44,896; Missouri, 13,083; and all other States, 8603. The value of the product was $11,265,760.
Clay. The various kinds of clay suitable for brick, tile, pottery, and other purposes are widely distributed and largely exploited. The total value of the different products made in 1901 was $110,211,587. Ohio is the largest producer, followed by Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois, and New York, in the order mentioned.
Quicksilver. The mining of quicksilver began about 1845 in California, and its production has been confined almost wholly to that State. The output in 1900 was 29,727 flasks (76½ pounds per flask), valued at $1,382,305. The United States rivals Spain for first rank.
Aluminum. The production of aluminum began in 1883, and developed rapidly, the product in 1901 amounting to 7,150,000 pounds, valued at $1,920,000, this being over one-half of the total product of the world.
Stone. Stone suitable for building and other industrial purposes is abundant in almost every State. Because of its bulk and the consequent shipping expenses, its production is largely limited to a comparatively local market. Hence in many of the States which have the most valuable resources of stone the quarrying industry has scarcely more than begun. The utilization of stone varies with the economic condition of the country, the total value having fallen from $53,035,620 in 1889 to $31,346,171 in 1896, and advanced steadily to $55,615,926 in 1901. Limestone is in most common use, only a few States failing to report its production in the latter year, when its aggregate value was $21,747,061. This figure does not include limestone to the value of $4,659,836 used for flux. About $8,204,054 worth of limestone was burned into lime, the bulk of the remainder being used for building purposes, or crushed for road-making. Indiana leads in the quarrying of limestone for building purposes. Granite is second in importance, the value of the product in 1900 being $14,266,104. While its production is also widely distributed. New England yields the largest quantities. Maine leads in its production for building purposes, and Vermont in its production for monumental purposes. The value of sandstone in 1901 was $8,844,974, including bluestone, grindstones, and whetstones. Pennsylvania, Ohio, and New York are the largest producers of these varieties. New York and Vermont produce most of the slate and Vermont and Georgia the bulk of the marble, the value of these two products in 1901 being respectively $4,787,525 and $4,965,699. The value of trap-rock was $1,710,857, about one-half of which was contributed by New Jersey.
Salt. Salt is somewhat broadly distributed as between the East and the West. In 1901 the United States produced 20,566,661 barrels, valued at $6,617,449. Michigan leads and New York follows closely. Kansas is third and Ohio fourth in rank. Nearly 90 per cent. of the total domestic product in 1901 came from these four States. California, Louisiana, and Utah are important producers. The deposits are of various ages. Thus the deposits of New York are of Silurian age, being interstratified with the sedimentary rocks of that time. The salt of Kansas and Louisiana is of Mesozoic or Tertiary age, and that of the Great Salt Lake region is recent.
Cement. The production of Portland cement has a very recent development in the United States. From 335,500 barrels in 1890 the output increased steadily to 12,711,225 barrels in 1901, valued at $12,532,360. Of the total, 67.7 per cent. was reported from Lehigh and Northampton counties, Pa., and Warren County, N. J. The output of natural hydraulic cement in 1901 amounted to 7,084,823 barrels, valued at $3,056,278.
Gypsum. The production of gypsum increased from 256,259 short tons in 1892 to 659,659 short tons in 1901, valued in the latter year at $1,577,493. Michigan is the largest producer, followed by Kansas, Iowa, New York, and Ohio.
Phosphate Rock. The United States is the world's largest producer of phosphate rock. The production of this mineral began in South Carolina in 1867, and reached a maximum output there of 541,645 long tons in 1889, having decreased to 321,181 long tons in 1901. Its production in Florida began in 1888, and has increased almost steadily to 751,996 long tons in 1901. Tennessee, the only other State producing large quantities, began to yield in 1894, and in 1901 it produced 409,653 long tons. The total value in 1901 for all the States was $5,316,403.
Mineral Waters. Almost every State has mineral-water springs from which water is sold annually. The production of the United States increased from 2,000,000 gallons in 1880 to 18,392,732 in 1891, and 55,771,188 gallons in 1901, valued in the last year at $7,586,962. New York, Michigan, and Wisconsin are the largest producers. See section on Geographical Distribution, under Mineral Waters.
Miscellaneous. A moderate value of asphaltic products is realized each year. These consist of bituminous sandstones, asphaltic limestones, asphaltum, and gilsonite, from California, Kentucky, Indian Territory, Texas, and Utah. Peat is not worked to any important degree, but forms a not inconsiderable reserve of fuel in some Northern States. Slate is extensively produced in Vermont and Pennsylvania. Graphite occurs in the Champlain region of New York, also in Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Alabama. Among other important products are abrasives, borax, pyrite, mineral paints, talc, soapstone, and manganese ore. Almost all the minerals and metals used in the arts are produced, and in quantities sufficient to meet the needs of the home markets. Tin, antimony, platinum, nickel, sulphur, and gems and precious stones are the articles most largely imported.
Agriculture. The United States produces a larger value of agricultural products than any other country. Until the last quarter of the nineteenth century agriculture strongly predominated in the industrial life of the nation. It still employs a much greater number of individuals than any other industry. Owing to the vast area and great variety of physical and climatic conditions, most of the staple products known to the world can be raised. The agricultural development of the United States has had an immense influence on the progress of the world—not only by revolutionizing the system of farm machinery, but by adding to the European food supply and making possible a more rapid growth of population. With respect to the country's adaptability to agriculture, the most prominent features are: First, the preëminence of the Mississippi Valley for agricultural purposes; and, second, the vast waste areas to the west which are but little suited to tillage. If to the arable portion of the Mississippi drainage basin be added the area drained into the Gulf of Mexico by other streams, it would include about one-third of the total area of the United States. In this division, almost unbroken by mountain or swamp area, the soil is generally of great fertility, and probably over four-fifths of the value of the agricultural products may be accredited to this region. The Appalachian and Atlantic seaboard region contains much broken and rocky land, and much soil of only moderate or of inferior quality. Throughout the eastern half of the United States the rainfall is ordinarily sufficient for growth of crops. Westward, however, in the longitude of central Kansas, the rainfall is greatly diminished and the transition from cultivated region to grazing lands is fairly abrupt. The Gulf of Mexico has a decidedly moderating effect on the climate of the Gulf States, particularly Florida. But there is no protection in this region against the cold winds from the north which occasionally sweep southward and bring frosts even to that State. Although much farther south than Southern Europe, the Gulf region is less adapted to the growing of tropical products. The Appalachian Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean together have a somewhat moderating effect upon the Carolina-Virginia region and the region farther north; hence this area has an advantage in the raising of some products, especially fruit, over the region west of the Appalachians. In the north the lakes have a moderating influence, making that territory also favorable for fruit-growing. On the Pacific Coast the ocean breezes and the mountains together afford the most highly protected portion of the United States, and make it unequalled as a fruit region.
Area of Farms and Improved Land. In the following table it will be seen that the total farm area of the United States increased in the last half of the nineteenth century nearly threefold:
Acres of Land in Farms
The total farm area in the decade 1860-1870 stood practically stationary, but the improved area increased during that period. The large gain made between 1890 and 1900 consisted mainly of unimproved land. This was due mainly to the inclusion in the census of large areas of grazing land throughout the West, particularly Texas, in which State the unimproved area increased from 30,660,722 to 106,230,941 acres. In the North Atlantic States the census shows a considerable decrease since 1880 in the improved area, but this was largely due to a change in census methods, and the real decrease was less than indicated. The improved area in the South Atlantic States has increased constantly since 1870. The following table shows the acreage of improved and unimproved land and the total land area in 1900:
|STATES BY DIVISIONS||Total land
| Total improved
| Unimproved |
The most noteworthy fact shown is the great importance, absolutely and proportionately, of the north central division. Over one-half the total farm area in this section is improved. There are but few large regions in the world so easily and uniformly adaptable to cultivation. In Iowa 97.4 per cent. of the total land area was in farms in 1900, and of this 86.5 per cent. was improved. Illinois makes almost an equally good showing, and Indiana, Ohio, and Missouri are other States in this group which have a large percentage of improved land.
Size of Farms. From the following table it will be seen that the size of farms varies greatly in different parts of the country:
Average Number of Acres per Farm by Geographic Divisions.
|The United States||146.6||136.5||133.7||153.3||199.2||202.6|
|Alaska and Hawaii||1,142.1||............||............||............||............||............|
The most fundamental principle in determining the size of the American farm is that it is adapted to an area convenient for the average family. Unlike the English farmer, the typical American farmer does not expect to employ a large number of hands. Neither does he expect to supplement his farm work by hiring himself to others, as is common among the peasant class of France. A son who is a member of a large family often works for a farmer who is not blessed with a surplus of sons, and thus there is an adjustment to suit the average family. The United States, therefore, has no peasant class corresponding to that of Europe. The recent settlement of the West, in which the average homestead (160 acres) was adapted to the average family, has tended to establish this condition of things; but it is also true of the older States. One may note also that in the South, where the plantation system formerly prevailed, a rapid readjustment is taking place to suit the family unit. But the size of farm that a family can cultivate varies with the methods used in cultivation, that is to say, whether capitalistic, intensive, etc. Thus the same labor that will suffice for a grain or stock farm of a given size is sufficient for only one-half or less of that amount when a cotton farm is in question. There are certain kinds of farms that for special causes tend to depart more or less from the system above described. Such are the grazing farms of the West, the Louisiana sugar plantations, the bonanza wheat farms of the Northwest and California, and, in a less degree, the garden farms of the Atlantic Coast, where, though the farms are small, much help is employed. Referring to the foregoing table, in the Western division we have two extremes: large grazing or wheat farms, and small irrigated or fruit farms. In Wyoming less than one-seventh of the total number of farms in 1900 contained less than 100 acres each, while 42 per cent. of the farm land was contained in farms over 1000 acres and the average size for the State was 1333 acres. In Utah the average size of farms was 212.4 acres, and considerably over three-fourths of tile total number of farms contained less than 100 acres each. The average given for the North Central States is the most truly representative of the average given for any group. In that division 29.9 per cent. of the farms were between 100 and 17.5 acres each. The following table shows the relative number of farms in the different-sized groups for three census years:
Percentage of the Number of Farms in each of Seven Specified Areas in Acres—1880-1900.
|CENSUS YEAR|| Under
The increase shown in the group 20 to 50 acres was mainly in the Southern States and particularly in the cotton belt of that region. The South Central States had 23.6 per cent. of its farms in this group in 1880 and 30.1 per cent. in 1890. The decrease in the group 50 to 100 acres was mainly in the North Central States, there being at the same time a general increase in this class in the Southern States. The decrease in the group 100 to 500 acres was most marked in the South and West. The two larger groups decreased in the South and increased in the North Central and Western divisions. In 1900 the census made three classifications for farms having between 100 and 500 acres, with the results as follows: Group 100 to 175 acres, 24.8 per cent. of the total farms; group 175 to 260 acres, 8.5 per cent. of the total farms; and group 260 to 500 acres, 6.6 per cent. of the total number of farms. The large number in the group 100 to 175 was partly the effect of the homestead claim laws. Over two-thirds of the farms in Oklahoma were in this group. The decrease in the average size of farms from 1860 to 1880 was due primarily to the rapid decrease in the size of farms in the South. The increase shown in the period 1880 to 1900 was due to the development of large bonanza and grazing farms and to the increased use of machinery.
Farm Tenure. As the country becomes older there is a rapidly increasing and almost universal tendency toward the renting system, though this is much more marked in some regions than in others. In the earlier period of development the man of small means took a claim, but now he is forced to rent. The frontier, as it pushed across the country, has been characterized by the fact that most of its farms were operated by owners. In the table below it will be seen that the highest percentage of owned farms is in the West, but the renting of farms began at once and steadily increased. The increase in tenancy has generally been deprecated as indicating a decadence in agricultural welfare, but in the following table it is shown that the increase in the number of tenants has not been at the expense of owners, for the farms operated by owners have also rapidly increased. In fact, the increase of these tenants since 1850 has been faster than the increase of the agricultural population. The increase in both the number of owners and the number of tenants has been at the expense of the wage-earning employees.
|Number of farms operated by|| Number of persons out of each 1000 |
males engaged in agriculture
on farms operated by
The first class may be further subdivided as follows: owners, 54.9; part owners, 7.9 per cent.; owners and tenants, 0.9 per cent.; and managers, 1 per cent. There is an increased tendency to delegate the management of farms. In the south especially, the large number of the owners are absentees. Of the total number of owners of rented farms in 1900, 1,005,479 owned but one farm each, 142,838 owned two farms each, 67,719 owned three and under five farms each, 28,698 owned five and under ten farms each, 8966 owned ten and under twenty farms each, 3241 owned twenty farms and over. Of the last group 2332 owners were in the South Central States and 704 in the South Atlantic States. The following table shows the number of owned and rented farms and the tenancy in each class:
|Number of farms operated by|
The percentage of rented farms and the rate of increase of these are greatest in the South. The greater proportionate number of rented farms in that section results from the industrial change incident to the overthrow of slavery. Negroes prefer renting to wage-earning. In 1899 there were 769,528 farms operated by colored farmers, of whom 451,799 were in the South Central division of States. Of the latter number 86,748 owned their farms, and 13,895 farms were operated by part owners, 917 by owners and tenants, 623 by managers, 171,105 by cash tenants, and 178,511 by share tenants. It is noteworthy that in the two Southern divisions of States the negro cash tenants almost equal in number the negro share tenants; while at the same time the white share tenants outnumber the white cash tenants 8 to 3. Renting is least customary in the North Atlantic States. (See article Negro in America, and section on Cotton in this article.) Rented farms average less in size than the owned farms, and a larger percentage of the rented farms is improved. This is particularly true in the South and is most noticeable in share-rent farms. Farms in that section are leased mainly for raising crops. Farms in the United States are usually rented for short periods, one year at a time being the most common. In Great Britain, by contrast, the long term system of tenure prevails.
Methods. See the article Agriculture.
Irrigation. It was not until after the humid region had been generally settled that the arid region was occupied. The Mormons, in 1847, were the first to practice irrigation in the West. In 1870 there were only 20,000 acres irrigated. In the Great American Desert the area at present under irrigation and cultivation is insignificant as compared with the uncultivated portion. It is estimated that the water supply is sufficient to irrigate only one-fifth of the arid region.
The decade 1870-80 was characterized by rapid development of small ditches. In the latter year there were about 1,000,000 acres irrigated. The following decade was characterized by rapid construction of canals, nearly all of which resulted financially in failures. In many instances the supply does not equal the demands placed upon the canals. There are now but few unused sources from which water can be largely obtained. Hereafter the extension of the irrigation system will depend mainly upon the construction of large reservoirs. Irrigation has suffered much from the want of adequate laws. In only three States—Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming—is the system of supervision and control complete. In several States no public control is exercised. The laws are often indefinite or contradictory. There have arisen disputes as to the rights of the different States to the use of a stream which may pass through their territories. In 1902 a new act was passed by Congress which provided that the Department of the Interior should deal with questions of the water supply, and the location, construction, and management of irrigation works. Receipts from the disposal of public lands are set aside for construction works. Water is to be furnished both to public and private lands. Before the beginning of survey for contemplated works, the Secretary of the Interior is to withdraw from entry, except under homestead laws, any land that may be irrigated from such works. In anticipation of the rise of land values through national irrigation, there was a rush of speculators who, through a perversion of the intention of the Desert Land Law, the Timber Law, and the commutation clause of the Homestead Law, acquired large areas without actual settlement. The following table shows the status of irrigation in the arid States and Territories:
| NUMBER OF
|ACREAGE IRRIGATED||Value of
| In crops, |
California has the largest number of irrigators, but Colorado has the largest irrigated area. The number of irrigators increased faster than the area irrigated, thus showing a tendency to subdivide large irrigated tracts and cut them up into smaller homesteads devoted to fruit-raising. Streams are the principal source of the water supply, although wells are of some importance in California. The value of crops grown on irrigated land is much the greatest in California. In the census year the crops irrigated with their acreage were as follows: Hay and forage, 3.665,654 acres; cereals, 1,399,709 acres; orchard fruits, 251,289 acres; other crops, 226,881 acres.
The following diagram shows the relative size of the eleven arid States and Territories, with area in private ownership, farm area, and improved irrigated acreage:
The table on page 661 shows the development and the distribution of the four largest crops. These, together with cotton, are by far the most important crops in the United States, constituting over nine-tenths of the entire crop area.
Corn. The largest and most valuable American crops are corn and hay. They are at the basis of the great stock-raising interests of the country. Since the bulk of both crops are consumed on the farm and not placed upon the market, and hence are not ‘money crops,’ their importance is usually lost sight of in discussions of American agriculture. Corn stands without a rival either in respect to area or value. It is indigenous to America, and its production is still largely confined to this continent, the United States producing about three-fourths of the world's supply. It is the distinctive American crop. It has a larger acreage than all other cereals combined. See Maize.
Hay. As compared with corn, hay is of greater relative importance in regions which are not well adapted for the growing of corn, but where the demand for stock-food is nevertheless great. Thus in the North Atlantic States the acreage of hay is nearly one-third greater than the total area devoted to cereals, and in the Western division of States the acreage of hay is over twenty-nine times that of corn and seven-eighths as great as that of all cereals combined. In the latter region a large part of the crop has the advantage of irrigation. In most of the North Central States hay is the second crop in respect to acreage and value. In the cotton States but little attention is given it, although there has been a significant increase in this section in recent years. (See Table.) The increase in the acreage of hay has been especially rapid since 1880, the area devoted to it having doubled between 1880 and 1900, the greatest part of this gain being made in the earlier of the two decades, corresponding to the period in which there was a decadence in wheat culture. The prairie region was easily adaptable to the raising of this crop. Moreover, the increased attention given to cattle and horses, and the need of putting the soil under grass to improve its productivity in the older States, have tended to develop this crop. The principal variety of hay is timothy, its production being confined largely to the North Central and the North Atlantic States. But comparatively little of any other kind is grown in the latter division of States. Next in importance are wild salt and prairie grasses, which are produced in the region in which timothy is little grown—the more arid prairie region and westward. Clover ranks third in acreage, but is a long way removed. Its production is largest in the North Central States. In the Western division of States alfalfa is the most important hay. Two or more crops of this variety of hay are obtained annually, and alfalfa stands first in yield per acre. In the far West, especially California, large quantities of grain are cut green for hay. Millet and forage crops are grown in most parts of the country.
Wheat. There are two other crops which greatly exceed each of the foregoing as money crops, wheat and cotton. The greater part of each of these crops is sold, particularly cotton. They represent also by far the most important exports, and hence are brought to the notice of the public eye in a degree almost out of proportion to their importance. Cotton is the great money crop of the Southern States, and wheat of the North Central and Western States. The United States wheat crop varies in amount from one-third to one-half that of Europe. Wheat can be successfully grown in every State of the Union. However, the competition of certain favored regions has limited its cultivation in others. A hardy crop and of quick growth, it is the principal crop in the far North, and also in the West, wherever the climate is unseasonable for corn. The climate and soil are less favorable to its growth in the South. Wheat, more easily than most other crops, may be handled by machinery, and therefore by capitalistic methods. The existence of level prairie lands, unobstructed by stones or stumps, and purchasable at low figures in large quantities from railroad companies, or, as in California, from the extensive Spanish land grants, explains the rise of the bonanza wheat farms—the most typical of which are found in the valley of the Red River of the North and the Great Valley of California. On some of these farms wheat is cut and threshed in one operation by machines, propelled by steam. In the planting of the grain, also, the highest type of agricultural machinery is used. In some instances steam machinery plows, cultivates, and sows in one operation. These farms are being gradually broken up, and mixed farming is taking their place, as the soil becomes exhausted from the too great repetition of the one crop. During the period from 1870 to 1890 wheat cultivation developed in Argentina, India, and other regions, and these countries came into competition with the United States in the European market. In consequence of this fact there was a decrease in the price of wheat, and in turn in the cultivation of wheat over the greater part of the United States. During the decade 1880-90 there was a decrease in the aggregate wheat acreage of five and two-tenths per cent. But the development of wheat cultivation in the countries mentioned has not been so great since 1890, prices have improved, and wheat culture in the United States has revived, the area devoted to its cultivation having increased fifty-six and six-tenths per cent. in the decade 1890-1900. In the regions where the winters are rigorous, especially where the snowfall is not heavy enough to protect vegetation, as in the Red River Valley, or where the rainfall may be inadequate in the autumn, the wheat crop is sown in the spring. In 1901 a little over four-sevenths of the total wheat acreage was winter wheat. With the development of the Northwest, the raising of spring wheat is rapidly gaining upon winter wheat, having increased from about one-third of the total wheat acreage in 1901. Wheat benefited even more than corn from the improved machinery which came into use about 1850 and subsequently. This, together with the improvement of transportation which made it possible for the product of the interior to reach the European market, and together with the adaptability of the prairie soils to wheat culture, resulted in a more rapid increase in the acreage devoted to it than was true of corn.
|COPYRIGHT, 1902, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
Cotton. While the value of the cotton crop is not so great as is that of wheat, the receipts from its sales and especially from its exportation are much greater. (See paragraph on Commerce.)
There is no other field product which gives employment to so large a number of people. The total area devoted to cotton in the United States increased from 14,480,019 acres in the census year 1880, to 20,175,270 in 1890, and 24,275,101 acres in 1900, the production in bales for those years being respectively 5,755,359, 7,472,511, and 9,534,707. (For detailed tables and map see Cotton.) Through the reduction of the high prices prevailing after the war, the cultivation of cotton is being abandoned almost entirely in the border States. Its area of production is in the region southeast of the Appalachian Mountains, beginning in the north at the southern tier of counties in Virginia, and including over two-thirds of North Carolina and nearly all South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, then the region extending north in the Mississippi Valley, embracing western Tennessee, southern Arkansas, Indian Territory, Oklahoma, and the region southward to the Gulf. Florida and the coast plains of the States mentioned are not so favorable for its production as the region farther inland. In recent years there has been a remarkable development of cotton-growing in Texas, Indian Territory, and Oklahoma. Texas now yields twice the amount produced by any other State. Its production in that region, however, has suffered severely from the ravages of the boll-weevil. In 1900 43.80 per cent. of the crop was produced west of the Mississippi River. From the time of the introduction of the cotton gin to the time of the Civil War, the cultivation of cotton was one of the most rapidly developing industries of the United States, being favored by the high prices obtained for its products and the advantages which water transportation afforded in the South to place it upon the market. The most rapidly developing period was 1850-60, when the area devoted to cotton in the ten principal States increased 100 per cent. It was during this period that cotton first asserted its supremacy in the South. The area devoted to corn increased only 17 per cent. in the same period. The construction of railroads and the development of corn-raising in the North Central States made possible the importation of that product, and the cotton-grower believed it more profitable to import his corn and devote his soil to cotton. While corn was well in advance of cotton in acreage at the outbreak of the Civil War, the still higher prices of cotton prevailing after the war turned attention more than ever to it, and subsequent to 1870 the importation of corn became general and the acreage of its cultivation in the cotton States fell below the acreage of cotton. A number of other factors that assisted in strengthening the domination of cotton were operative after the war. The war left Southern planters without capital. In order to secure supplies of food, farm equipments, etc., of the merchant, the farmer was obliged to place his land and his crop under mortgage to the merchant. Cotton was a cash crop, being easily marketed, and was the most acceptable to the merchant, who insisted upon a large production of it in order to make himself safe in case of a partial crop product. Nor did the farmer on his part care to take the risk of experimenting with new or mixed systems of farming. This condition became greatly emphasized by the presence of a large ex-slave population. The negro preferred to become a tenant-cultivator, and as such has become the special prey of the crop-mortgage system. His obligations and his inclinations both tended to restrict him to cotton. Thus, although the price of cotton fell between 1875 and 1900 more tlian the price of any other crop, rendering its production unprofitable, the economic system which had fastened itself upon the South made it impossible to check cotton cultivation. A vigorously conducted agitation, participated in by the Cotton Trust and by the planters themselves, to reduce the cotton-growing area, had but little result. The utilization of the cotton seed has tended in a measure to offset the consequences of the disastrous fall in the price of the fibre. In 1899 the cotton-seed product amounted to 4,566,100 tons, valued at $46,950,575. The development of manufacturing in the South has tended to enlarge the local markets for all farm products. In some sections this demand for a greater diversity of crops has tended to diminish the dependence upon cotton and the mortgage-holder. But in the greater part of the cotton area proper the tyranny of cotton has scarcely been weakened.
Oats. The only other crop which is grown on a scale comparable with the foregoing crops is oats. The acreage of oats is indeed greater than that of cotton, but the value is much less. It belongs in the group with corn and hay in that it is produced almost wholly for consumption on the farm. More hardy than corn, it is grown as a stock-food substitute for it in the States where corn does not grow well, namely the northern tier of States. In New York, Wisconsin, and some other commonwealths, oats has the largest area of any cereal. In a number of other States it ranks second, including the two largest oats-growing States, Illinois and Iowa, in each of which oats is twice as extensively grown as is wheat. The greatest growth of the industry occurred in the decade 1880-90, when the acreage increased from 16,144,393 to 28,320,677. This increase was associated with the development of the Northern States and the decline of wheat in the region already under cultivation. In New England, the Southern States, and the Far West the crop did not figure prominently. The United States produces less than two-thirds the oats products of the world.
|COPYRIGHT, 1902, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
Rice. Although rice was introduced as early as 1700 and has been grown ever since, it was not until near the year 1900 that its cultivation began to assume large proportions. For 150 years its cultivation was confined mainly to the delta lands and tidal rivers of the Carolinas and Georgia, where it was cultivated by the aid of irrigation. It was for a long time the only crop in the United States to which irrigation was applied. South Carolina ranked first in its production until 1880. A new epoch in rice cultivation began in 1897-98, when it was successfully grown by the aid of irrigation in the coastal prairie lands of southwestern Louisiana. The cultivation of rice in that region developed with remarkable rapidity and the production of the country increased from 115,000,000 pounds in 1898 to 331,000,000 in 1902. Of this last amount, which was only a little short of the consumption of the country, Louisiana and Texas together produced over 90 per cent. In 1900 there were 315,344 acres in rice, of which 201,685 were in Louisiana.
Other Cereals. Other varieties of cereals than those mentioned flourish, but have not become favorites as in some other countries. Barley is rarely grown throughout the greater part of the country. The United States produces only one-ninth of the barley crop of the world and is exceeded by three of the European countries. Barley is most important in California, where it is used as a stock-food substitute for corn. The other States in which it is most grown are Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and the Dakotas. Its total acreage increased from 1,997,727 in 1880 to 4,470,190 in 1900. Rye, the chief staple in some of the European countries, is wholly unimportant in the United States. Its production is greatest in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and other Northern States. Its acreage in 1880 was 1,842,233, and in 1900, 2,054,292 acres. Pennsylvania and New York produce over five-eighths of the total buckwheat for the country, the area devoted to it in 1900 being 807,060 acres. Kaffir corn is found adaptable to the semi-arid regions and is grown most abundantly in western Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. There were 19,900 acres of it cultivated in 1900.
Vegetables. Almost every American farmer is a gardener to the extent that he endeavors to raise vegetables for family consumption. Gardening on a larger scale than this is determined principally by the question of soil and climate and convenience to market. Market-gardening is therefore a greatly localized industry, and is most common in proximity to the large centres of population. In the census year 1900, New Jersey and Rhode Island devoted over 11 per cent. of their improved land to the cultivation of vegetables. Massachusetts ranking next with 7 per cent. devoted to vegetables. Of the total value of all crops the vegetable product of Rhode Island amounted to thirty-four and nine-tenths per cent., then in order followed New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maine, Florida, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, and New York. The value of the vegetable crop in the last named State amounted to 18.1 per cent. The supply of the early market at these centres must be from the South, and hence garden farming has developed extensively at favored points along the Atlantic coast down to Florida, this region not only possessing an advantageous climate and soil, but also cheap water transportation to its markets.
Potatoes. The most extensively grown and most valuable of the vegetables are potatoes, yet the production is small as compared with that of Europe, or even Germany alone. The area devoted to them is greatest in the Northern States; indeed, there is a tendency for them to localize in the northern tier of States. Between 1889 and 1899 the five States, Maine, New York, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, increased their area devoted to potatoes 35.9 per cent., whereas in Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, Kentucky, and Tennessee there were decreases ranging from 20.1 per cent, to 26.7 per cent. About one-third of the comparatively small Southern product is shipped North to supply the early market. Of vastly greater importance in the South are sweet potatoes, but these in turn are scarcely raised at all in the extreme Northern States. This crop is the second most important of the vegetables. The total area in Irish potatoes in 1900 was 2,938,778 acres, and in sweet potatoes 537,312 acres.
Miscellaneous Vegetables. In recent years there has been an enormous increase in the production of miscellaneous vegetables. This has been partially due to the development of the canning industry, and the consequent greater consumption of vegetables out of their season. This is especially true of sweet corn and tomatoes, the production of which has attained large proportions in some States, Maryland, New Jersey, and New York being in the lead. In 1900 the total value of canned vegetables was $29,368,158, of which over three-quarters consisted of tomatoes and corn. Of other varieties of vegetables the most important are watermelons, which are grown most extensively in the South, Georgia and Texas having the largest acreage. Muskmelons are less restricted as to locality. Cabbages and onions are generally grown. New York leading in their production. The United States contrasts strikingly with Great Britain and some other European countries in that turnips do not figure prominently among the vegetable crops. The census of 1900 reported 2,115,570 acres under miscellaneous vegetables.
Fruits. The most remarkable development of any phase of American agriculture in the decade 1890-1900 was made in fruit culture. This industry almost doubled in magnitude in that period. The number of orchard trees, for instance, increased from 193,452,588 to 367,104,694 (not including sub-tropical varieties). Most varieties of temperate zone fruits are grown in every State. The use of refrigerator cars has made it possible to transport fruits long distances, and thus all parts of the country have the advantage of the general market. However, climatic differences tend to localize. From the following table it will be seen that the apple has a decided primacy among American fruits:
|Peaches and nectarines||53,885,597||99,919,428|
|Plums and prunes||7,078,191||30,780,892|
Although it is grown throughout the country, the apple receives most attention in the North Central group of States and New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. The region of greatest development during the years 1890-1900 included Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, and Arkansas. Missouri more than doubled its number of trees, and it is much in advance of all other States. The southwest corner of the State, and the adjacent region of Arkansas and Kansas, have become famous for the production of this fruit. Peaches require a more moderate climate, and consequently are most important in the South. In Georgia and some other Southern States the raising of peaches to supply the early Northern market is a rapidly developing industry. In the North peach culture is developing most rapidly in protected regions, especially along the lake coast region, where the trees are protected from frost by the moderating influence of the Great Lakes. The number of trees in Michigan increased 322 per cent. between 1890 and 1900, and that State took first rank, the centre of peach culture being along lower Lake Michigan. On the Pacific Coast California has become an important peach-growing State. The production of plums and prunes is restricted largely to the Pacific Coast, particularly California. There was the largest increase in this variety of trees of any included in the foregoing list. The United States now produces more prunes than it consumes. Cherries and pears are grown throughout the country. The raising of apricots is mainly restricted to California. Grapes are another crop which require a moderate climate. California is the most favored region for them, and it has over three times more vines than any other State. It is the only State which produces raisins. Besides California, the chief region for the production of wine grapes is the climatically favored Lake Erie region in northern Ohio and western New York.
The production of the three most important varieties of small fruits—strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries—is well extended over the country, but their production in commercial quantities is localized largely in the South, so as to have the advantage of the early market. Cranberries require boggy lands, and are limited to the Cape Cod region, southern New Jersey, and central Wisconsin. Massachusetts has the smallest area, but produces over 60 per cent. of the product. California is unsurpassed as a region for the growing of all kinds of sub-tropical fruits, as the remarkable development of that region during the period 1880-1900 fully demonstrates. While oranges and lemons constitute the chief varieties, olives, figs, and other fruits are included. This region is also the chief centre of almonds and English walnuts. Southern Florida is also a large centre of orange culture and is the only important centre of pineapple culture of continental United States. (For a fuller description of sub-tropical culture, see California and Florida.) Arizona and New Mexico also give promise of becoming important centres for the growth of sub-tropical plants.
Tobacco. Virginia maintained the primacy in tobacco production until 1850, when it was surpassed by Kentucky. The latter State has steadily increased, until it represents over twice the acreage and value represented by the former. In the decade 1890-1900 North Carolina more than doubled its acreage and thus advanced ahead of Virginia. In 1900 Kentucky had 384,805 acres; North Carolina, 203,023; Virginia, 184,334; and Tennessee, 71,849. The limestone soil of central Kentucky and of the district northward into Ohio contains potash and other chemical elements required by the tobacco plant, which gives this region special advantage in its production. The principal other States producing tobacco are Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, New York, and Connecticut. The total acreage increased from 695,301 acres in 1890 to 1,101,483 acres in 1900. See map under Tobacco.
Sugar and Sugar-Producing Crops. The raising of sugar-cane in the United States proper is largely confined to Louisiana (q.v.). The area devoted to sugar-cane in the United States in 1899 aggregated 386,986 acres. The production of cane sugar in 1899 amounted to over 158,000,000 pounds. The production of sugar-cane molasses in the same year amounted to over 6,213,859 pounds, and of syrup, 12,293,032 gallons. Sorghum cane is grown very generally throughout the United States. The total acreage in 1899 was 293,152, and the syrup produced amounted to 16,972,783 gallons. In the early history of the country a large part of the sugar and syrup consumed was manufactured from the sap of the maple tree. The maple sugar made in 1899 amounted to 11,928,770 pounds, which was but little more than one-third of the product reported in every preceding census year from 1850 to 1890. About two-thirds of this was made in Vermont and New York. The maple-syrup product in the same year amounted to 2,056,611 gallons. Since 1890 there has been a rapid development of the beet-sugar industry. The production of beet sugar increased from 2,203 tons (of 2240 pounds each) in 1889-90 to 195,463 in 1902-03. The latter amount was produced from 175,000 acres of beets. Over two-thirds of this acreage was in Michigan and California, and the remainder was distributed through a number of States. Unlike sugar-cane, the sugar beet is usually grown as an incidental to other farming operations. Owing to their high value per acre, they are both, however, important to the sections in which they are grown.
Stock-Raising. Compared with crop-growing, stock-raising is of much more importance in the United States than in European countries. The per capita number of horses, cattle, and hogs is much greater in the United States than in any of the principal European countries. The United States has five times as many hogs, over twice as many cattle, and as many horses as has European Russia, but the latter leads the United States in the number of sheep. Australia and Argentina are the only prominent countries in which the relative importance of domestic animals is greater than in the United States. Of the total value of agricultural products in 1899 more than one-fifth was fed to live stock. In the North Central division one-fourth (in value) of the products was fed to live stock. The following table shows the number and the increase of domestic animals on farms and ranges since 1850:
The foregoing figures do not include the young of animals. Furthermore, the census methods of enumeration have not been uniform, and the figures are therefore only approximately comparable. In some instances there has been uncertainty as to whether range animals have been included or excluded. Thus, in the decade 1890-1900 the decrease shown for the number of cattle is thought to be mainly if not wholly apparent, and not real. It will be seen in the table that there has been a much more rapid increase in the number of horses and cattle than of swine and sheep. A comparison with the census figures of population will show that, with the exception of horses and mules, the increase in the numbers of live stock since 1850 has not kept pace with the increase in population. The following table shows the increase in live stock since 1850:
|Total neat cattle—|
In this table will be observed the great predominance of the North Central division in the number of horses, cattle, and hogs, of sheep in the Western division, and of mules in the Southern. Prior to 1850 the prairie areas west of the Mississippi, and particularly the arid and semi-arid region, including the Cordilleras and a broad belt bounding it on the east, had not been generally utilized. Settlement thus far had been mainly in a wooded region in which there was little natural pasture well adapted to cattle, while swine, being more hardy, could shift for themselves in the forest. The South particularly was much better suited to hogs than to cattle; consequently hogs received much attention west of the Appalachians and in the South. Tennessee, which had the largest number in 1850, had more than the whole North Atlantic division, including as it does New York and Pennsylvania. There was in the latter region much pasture land, and cattle and sheep received considerable attention. As there were no forests to be removed in the West, and the pasture area increased, and the means of transportation opened up the grazing area of the trans-Mississippi region, cattle-raising became of relatively greater and greater importance. The increase in the use of machinery since 1850 has created a larger demand for horses and mules, which, however, has been somewhat checked since 1890 by electric transportation and the bicycle. Mules are increasing much more rapidly than horses in the South. A remarkable fact shown by the table is that in the South Atlantic division there has been, generally speaking, a retrogression in stock-raising. About 1850 cotton began to dominate the agricultural industry, and thus resulted an actual decrease in the number of cattle, swine, and sheep. The same has been true of that portion of the South Central division which was productive in 1850, the increase shown for that division being due to the development of new territory in Texas, Indian Territory, and Oklahoma. A large part of this region is in the grazing and grain belt. Little was done prior to the beginning of the nineteenth century to improve the breeds. By the year 1900 the rate of improvement had become very rapid.
Horses. The most distinctive success attained in American horse-raising has been in the development of a new and superior breed of racehorses. American racers are now the best in the world. Vermont early became well known for the raising of driving horses, but the Blue-grass region of Kentucky now contains a large number of the most famous breeding farms of driving horses in America. (See article Horse.) In 1895 there were 120,000 registered standard-bred trotters in the United States. From the trotting stock are bred roadsters and coach horses, the European breed of coach horse not being extensively bred in the country. The United States has not developed any new breeds of draught horses, but imports stock horses of this kind from Europe. The favorite breeds are the English draught, Clydesdale, and Percheron. On the whole, the United States is still far behind Great Britain and some other European countries in respect to the proportion which the number of its thoroughbred horses bears to the total number of horses. Until recently the American farmer was inclined to favor a horse for general purposes, but there is now a decided tendency to breed for special purposes—draught, roadsters, coach, racers, etc. The steady growth in the demand for horses prior to about 1890 resulted in the breeding of the low grade as well as the better class, a condition very much against the improvement of the breed. The decline in demand and depreciation in price between 1890 and 1895 checked the breeding of inferior animals, and since then the grade of horses has improved much faster than before.
Cattle. The nineteenth century was well advanced before stock cattle from Europe had been imported to any considerable extent. Shorthorns were for several years imported in the largest numbers, and there are more pure-blooded and grade shorthorns in the United States to-day than all other breeds. The ‘hustling’ qualities of the Herefords made them favorites in the range States. The polled Angus were introduced later (1870), but have become rivals of the Herefords for beef purposes, especially in the North Central States. These three breeds comprise practically all the pure-blooded cattle in the United States used for breeding and for grading up native cattle for beef purposes. In feeding and breeding beef cattle it has been the aim in recent years to reduce the time necessary to prepare the animal for market. In the Western and South Central States the average age of range cattle decreased six months from 1890 to 1900. It was claimed that in the latter year cattle matured a year earlier than in 1880. Pure-blood bulls are most common in the range States of the West.
The method of cattle-raising in the range region has greatly changed in the last quarter of the nineteenth century. Formerly cattle were pastured and driven about without hindrance over Government lands. To-day much of the range area is inclosed by wire fences. Part of the former range area has been settled by small farmers, but produces more cattle than under the old system. Instead of letting range cattle shift for themselves in winter, as formerly, it is common to provide food and protection for them.
The recent remarkable development in the dairying industry has exercised a decided influence over cattle-raising. The number of milk or dairy cows increased from 6,385,000 in 1850 to 17,139,674 in 1900, while the increase in dairy value of these cattle was proportionately much greater. See Cattle, and Dairying.
Hogs. The United States has accomplished more in the development of new and superior breeds of hogs than in that of any other farm animal. Indeed, in both the quality of the breed and in absolute number the United States stands almost alone in this branch of industry. In 1900 the United States had as many hogs as the entire Continent of Europe.
The hog is the largest consumer of American corn, and where there is an abundance of one there are large holdings of the other. The hog is ready for the market at an early age, and is therefore a ‘quick-money’ animal. If it can be saved from disease it is the most profitable investment for the corn-grower. It has won the appellation of ‘mortgage-lifter.’ Until toward 1850 the most common grade was the half-wild, long-legged, thin animals known as ‘razor-backs.’ They are still common in the Southern States, but before 1830 a distinct breed, the Chester White, had been developed in Chester County, Pennsylvania, and about 1840 another new breed, the Poland China, originated in southwestern Ohio. The Durocs or Jersey Reds, another native breed, first became common in New Jersey, and is now well known over the country. Through these and other improved native breeds, together with the imported Berkshires, the grade of hogs in the North Central States has been improved until it has reached a very high standard. Stockmen have aimed at securing a breed that will fatten quickly and at an early age. The Poland China satisfies this condition, and its imprint is most noticeable among American hogs.
Sheep. Sheep hold a much lower rank in the agricultural economy of the United States than in that of most modern nations. The industry has labored under the disadvantages of a vacillating tariff policy, and for a number of years has had to compete with the growing flocks of Australasia and of the Plata region of South America. In the United States the number of sheep increased from 28,477,591 in 1870 to 50,626,626 in 1884, after which year there was a rapid decrease in numbers. During the middle of the nineteenth century the merino was the prevailing breed, and in 1870 more than four-fifths of all the sheep in the United States were either pure breed or grade merino. In 1900 it is estimated that 30 per cent. of the flocks in the range country were of mutton breeds, and that from seventy to eighty per cent. of those in the farming States had a predominance of English blood. The merino blood still predominates in the range States. In consequence of this change the average value of sheep nearly doubled between 1870 and 1900. The average weight of the fleece increased from 4.8 pounds in 1880 to 5.6 pounds in 1890 and 6.7 in 1900. Thus, although the number of sheep decreased, there was a large gain in the total wool production, amounting to 16.8 per cent. in the decade 1890-1900. The number of sheep in the United States in 1900, outside of the Western division of States, was not so great as in 1850. Sheep-grazing began to spread rapidly in the Western division about 1870. Since 1890 there has been most remarkable development in sheep-grazing in the northern Cordilleran States. In Montana, the foremost sheep State in the Union (4,215,000 head in 1900), the increase amounted to 79.2 per cent.; in Wyoming, which ranks third, the increase amounted to 367 per cent.; while in Idaho it was 449.5 per cent. In New England the dairy industry has supplanted sheep-raising, so that the number of sheep in 1900 was less than one-third the number in 1850. Since 1880 there has been a decline in the North Central States, particularly Ohio. Texas in 1890 had attained first rank, but in 1900 had only one-third the number of sheep reported for the earlier year. Elsewhere through the Southern States the industry was never important, and has declined generally since 1850.
Poultry. The importance of the production of eggs and poultry in the United States is not generally realized. The value of the poultry and the egg products in 1899—$136,891,877 and $144,286,370 respectively—was two-thirds greater than the value of wool and about one-fourth greater than that of oats produced in that year. The egg production (chicken) for the year amounted to 1,293,818,144 dozen, an increase of 474,000,000 dozen over 1889. This gain was partly due to the greater use of the incubator. The value of the egg product in Ohio and Iowa in 1899 each exceeded $10,000,000. The different kinds of fowls in 1900 numbered as follows: Chickens, 233,598,005; turkeys, 6,599,367; geese, 5,676,863; and ducks, 4,807,358. The foregoing figures are for farms, not villages, and do not include fowls under three months old.
Manufactures. The United States is the foremost manufacturing country in the world. The net value of its manufactured products in 1900 was nearly double that assigned by Mr. Mulhall to the manufactured products of Great Britain in 1894; and, according to the United States census estimate, was considerably over a third greater than the value of the British products in 1900. In the United States nearly 1,000,000 more persons were employed in 1900 in manufactories than were similarly employed in 1899 in Great Britain. Mr. Mulhall also estimated that if the extra value of United States products due to a protective tariff be included, the United States produced about one-third of the total manufactures of all nations. He claimed further that American manufactures multiplied twenty-fold between 1840 and 1894, while those of Europe only doubled. Manufacturing is absolutely the most rapidly growing of the American industries, and has become of coördinate importance with, if not of greater importance than either of the two other leading American industries—agriculture and trade and transportation.
The net value of the products of manufacture in 1900 was more than double the value of the net products of the farm. Even after the crude materials contributed by the farm, the forest, the mine, and the sea have been eliminated from the total net value of manufactured products, the value remaining still exceeds by more than one-sixth the net value of agricultural products. The value of manufactured products was twelve times as great in 1900 as in 1850, whereas the value of agricultural products was only three times as great. The number of individuals engaged in manufacturing was nearly a fourth less than the number in agriculture and over one-fourth greater than the number engaged in trade and transportation. See paragraph on Occupations in section on Population.
Natural Advantages. There is nothing strange in the large proportions which the manufacturing industry is attaining. There is no other territory under one government in the world with so much productive power. The abundance of raw material required by the manufacturing industries, the degree of availability, including transportation facilities, and the capabilities of the producers are unequaled. Both food supplies and agricultural materials for manufacture are cheaper, more abundant, and more varied in the United States than in any other manufacturing country. The well-distributed forests contain most varieties of timber needed in large quantities, and in amounts that admit of heavy exportations. The mineral resources also include nearly every variety required for manufacturing industries. In the production of the two minerals which constitute the basis of modern manufactures, coal and iron, the United States ranks foremost, and, indeed, produces nearly a third of the world's output of each. Moreover, the deposits of these minerals, together with deposits of limestone, which is needed in fluxing the iron ore, are frequently found in the same locality.
The transportation facilities include 18,000 miles of navigable rivers and a railway mileage that is greater than that of all Europe and that is over 39 per cent. of the railroad mileage of the world. The competition of the waterways with the railways gives the country the advantage of cheap rates. Another advantage about which little is said, but which, nevertheless, is great, is the freedom of interstate commerce. In no other equally large area in the civilized world is trade unrestricted by customs, excises, or national prejudice. The freedom which the United States enjoys from tradition is another factor of prime importance. At the same time the manufacturing industry has profited by reason of the contribution of ideas of people schooled under different industrial systems. The immigrant, like the native-born, is animated by the prospects of large possibilities, and a greater energy and ingenuity pervades industrial society in the United States than is known in the European countries. As a result the individual laborer accomplishes more in this country than he does abroad.
Mulhall says that nearly all American manufactures are produced by machinery, while in Europe more than one-half is hand work. With respect to the completeness of organization, the minuteness of its subdivision, and the rapidity with which work is expedited, the United States also excels. The United States has developed a system of ‘interchangeable mechanism’ which has proved of inestimable value to the progress of the manufacturing industry.
Localization. The manufacturing industry is very unevenly distributed over the country. There is a decided tendency to centralize in limited localities. The greater part of the manufacturing is carried on in the region north of the Potomac and Ohio rivers and east of the Mississippi. The centre of manufactures has always been well to the north and east of the centre of population, but has at every decade moved westward, and was nearer the centre of population in 1900 than in 1850. In 1850 the New England States produced 27.8 per cent, of the total products of the United States, and the Middle States 46.4 per cent. Notwithstanding the great increase in both sections, their relative production had decreased respectively to 14.4 and 38.0 in 1900. About 1850 the Central States were occupied chiefly with agricultural pursuits, and produced only 14.3 per cent. of the total product. But nowhere else in the world has there been so rapid a transformation of the occupations of the population. In 1900 that section produced 30.7 per cent of the total product. The Southern States suffered greatly in consequence of the Civil War, the per cent. of the total product contributed by that section having fallen from 10.3 in 1860 to 6.6 in 1870. Since 1870, however, there has been a rapid revival of industry, and in 1900 it produced 9.1 per cent. of the total product of the country.
In the localization of industries the factor of transportation in its relation to the supply of raw materials and the market has been one of primary importance. This applies especially to bulky and heavy products which are shipped with difficulty. Thus Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio become the iron-manufacturing region, since coal and iron are brought together here at a minimum cost. Live animals cannot be so easily shipped as packed meats, and hence the slaughtering industry is confined mainly to the West. The saving in the cost of transportation is a chief reason for the recent development of cotton manufacturing in the cotton-growing region. Proximity to the supply of wood and iron, and convenience to the market, give the Lake States the advantage of manufacturing agricultural implements at a minimum transportation cost. The densely populated Atlantic Coast region from Baltimore to Maine enables manufactures located in that section to reach a large market with a minimum transportation cost.
Another important natural condition affecting localization of industries is water power. This was formerly more important than at present, and is more prominent in determining the exact spot than the general section. Often, however, the natural advantages mentioned are of secondary importance, or decline in relative importance after an industry is well established. In such cases the momentum which an industry has received by its early start is often sufficient to carry it on. After long-continued success at a given point a certain precedence may become attached to the name of the place and a fostering local atmosphere is developed. In many industries technical training is of greater importance than accessibility to raw materials. Abundance of capital and labor are other prominent advantages. The North Atlantic States have benefited greatly from each of the three advantages just mentioned. Agriculture in this section long since ceased to absorb the available local capital, or afford an occupation for the surplus labor. For the growth and extent of manufactures, see Manufactures, and the separate articles on the various manufacturing industries, such as Cotton; Iron and Steel, Metallurgy of; Wool; etc. Also see the paragraph on Manufactures under the various States, and see Flour.
Textiles. The group of industries called textile in 1900 ranked first in the number of wage-earners employed, second in the amount of capital invested, and third in the value of products. If allowance be made for duplications, the value of products given in the table of the 15 groups of industries would be reduced to $1,095,127,934—the net value of products ready for direct consumption. The following table shows the growth of the combined textile industry since 1850 and its importance in 1900:
|Cotton small wares||1900||82||6,397,385||4,932||6,394,164|
|Hosiery and knit goods||1900||921||81,860,604||83,387||95,482,566|
|Flax, hemp, and jute||1900||141||41,991,762||20,903||47,601,607|
|Dyeing and finishing textiles||1900||298||60,643,104||29,776||44,963,331|
The inflation of the currency for 1870 makes the money figures for that year too large, and the increase in the following decade seems too small. It will be seen that, omitting flax, hemp, and jute, the capital invested has multiplied more than 8 times in 50 years and that the value of products has increased almost seven-fold. The much less relative increase of wage-earners (336.1 per cent.) indicates the growing importance of machinery in the manufacture of textiles.
The cotton-manufacturing industry has developed in recent years with great rapidity, and has placed the United States first with respect to the number of bales of cotton consumed. According to one estimate the average number of bales consumed for the five years ending with 1870 was 875,000 for the United States, 1,842,000 for the Continent of Europe, and 2,639,000 for Great Britain. The consumption for the year 1900 was respectively 4,599,000, 5,720,000, and 4,079,000 bales. However, when it is considered that the greater part of the spinning in the United States is of coarse or medium yarns, whereas the average spinning on the other side of the Atlantic is much finer, and the estimate is based upon the number of spindles or persons employed, it will be found that Great Britain is far in the lead. In 1900 the United States had 19,008,000 spindles, the Continent of Europe 33,000,000, and Great Britain 46,000,000. The data for the comparison of woolen manufacture in the different countries is less satisfactory. An estimate of wool consumption for 1894 accredited North America with 458,000,000 pounds, the Continent of Europe 1,247,000,000 pounds, and Great Britain 507,000,000 pounds. The United States exceeds but slightly, if at all, any of the three leading Continental woolen manufacturing countries—France, Germany, and Austria. The recent rapid development of silk manufacturing has placed the United States second in rank, and of the total product of the United States and Europe the former produced in 1900 23.3 per cent. The manufacture of flax, hemp, and jute in the United States is comparatively small.
Wool Manufactures. The greater part of the manufactures of wool consumed in the United States is of domestic production, the imports of woolen goods ranging in value from one-twenty-fifth to one-sixth of the value of the domestic production. The bulk of the wool used in manufacture is domestic, but the imports of raw wool also fluctuate enormously. The percentages of imports to the supply for the years 1890-1900 inclusive were respectively 46.3, 58.0, 20.9, 22.2, and 29.4. The total amount imported during that period was about two and one-half times the amount imported from 1881 to 1885 inclusive. Wool manufactures may be grouped under the general heads of woolen goods, worsteds, carpets (other than rag), felt goods, and wool hats. Until very recently the first of these groups had comprehended the greater part of the industry. There has been, however, a decline in the value of the products of woolen goods from $160,606,721 in 1880 to $118,430,158 in 1900. In the latter year there were 68,893 wage-earners employed in 1035 establishments. The decline in the manufacture of woolen goods is due to the introduction of worsted cloth for men's wear and the development of knit-goods manufacture. The change from one to the other was incident upon the mechanical improvements which made possible the combing of short staple wool and to the adaptation of American wools to the combing process consequent upon the crossing of the merino sheep with those of English blood. See Agriculture.
The manufacture of worsteds began in 1843, The progress has been rapid and steady, the value of the product in 1900, $120,314,344, being in excess of the value of woolen goods for the same year. There were 57,008 persons engaged as wage-earners in the industry. The first carpet manufactory was opened in 1791. The power loom was adapted to the weaving of ingrain carpets in 1844, and later to the weaving of Jacquard Brussels, Wilton, tapestry Brussels, and other makes. In 1900 28,411 persons were engaged as wage-earners in the industry and the product was valued at $48,192,351. The value of felt goods in 1900 was $6,461,691, and wool hats, $3,591,940. The woolen industry is almost wholly confined to the New England and the Middle Atlantic States, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania together producing over half the total product. Pennsylvania—chiefly Philadelphia—produces 48 per cent. of the carpet product of the United States. The following table shows the number of spindles employed in wool manufactures:
Comparative Statement of Spindles, 1890 and 1900
Hosiery and Knit Goods. The hosiery and knit goods products were formerly classed with the woolen goods, but since cotton has become the chief material used they have been separately classified. The industry is of recent development and has almost equaled the worsted and the silk industry in rapidity of growth. In 1850 the product was valued at only $1,028,102; in 1900 it was over 90 times that value. In the latter year 83,387 persons were engaged as wage-earners in the industry. New York and Pennsylvania produced about four-sevenths of the total product.
Silk Manufactures. In 1850 the value of silk manufactured in the United States was $1,809,476. In 1900 it was 60 times that amount, and the amount of raw silk consumed exceeded that consumed in France, the largest European manufacturer of silk. There were 483 establishments, employing 65,416 wage-earners. Almost the entire supply of raw silk used in the census year, 9,760,770 pounds, was imported from Japan, China, and Italy. The principal silk manufacturing district is northern New Jersey, after which come Pennsylvania, New York, and Connecticut.
Flax, Hemp, and Jute Manufactures. The value of the flax, hemp, and jute products increased from $37,313,021 in 1890 to $47,601,607 in 1900. In the latter year there were 20,903 wage-earners employed in 141 establishments. Binder twine and rope together constitute about five-ninths of the total product. Hemp is the principal material used. Very little success has attended the spasmodic attempts to establish linen manufactures in the United States. The flax grown here is not suitable for spinning. Massachusetts, New York, and Pennsylvania are the chief manufacturing States in this line.
Clothing. The production of men's ready-made or ‘factory-made’ clothing was already well advanced by 1850, but the manufacture of women's ready-made clothing has developed almost wholly since then. The total value of men's clothing—factory product—in 1900 was $276,861,607, an increase of 10.3 per cent. between 1890 and 1900, a decrease in price having made this figure much smaller than it would have been on the old scale of prices. The value of women's factory-made clothing meanwhile increased 133.8 per cent., the value in 1900 being $159,339,539. There are few other important branches of industry that employ so many wage-earners in proportion to the value of the product. In 1900 there were 120,950 engaged in the manufacture of men's clothing, and 83,739 in that of women's clothing. Since about 1870, however, there has been a revolution in the system of manufacturing men's clothing, resulting from the greater division of labor and the use of machinery, so that there has been a decrease of nearly one-fourth in the number of wage-earners.
Prior to about 1876 ready-made clothing was made principally by skilled tailors, assisted by members of their household. About that time the ‘team-work’ and task-price system was introduced, which divided the work between a number of persons. Each person performs only a small detail of the work, and little or no skill is required. Since the work requires no previous experience and no knowledge of the language, the unskilled foreign element in the large population centres have naturally drifted into it. The manufacturer, after the cloth and the linings have been cut, usually lets the work to contractors, who sublet it to be done in private houses or small workshops. This ‘sweating system,’ so called, represents one of the most unsatisfactory labor conditions in America. Very recently a new system, called in contradistinction the ‘factory’ system, is supplanting the task system. More persons are employed in a shop, and sometimes more than 100 persons are engaged in the making of one coat. More skill is required in the manufacture of women's clothing, and the task system has not been applied much in cloak manufacture. Considerably over one-third of the total product of men's ready-made clothing and over two-thirds of women's ready-made clothing are made in New York City. The increase in the value of men's ready-made clothing between 1890 and 1900 was greater for New York State than for the whole country. The business formerly done in Massachusetts has been largely transferred to New York.
The value of the clothing product of men's custom work and repairing for 1900 was estimated at $137,714,282, and of women's custom-made clothing and dressmaking, $48,356,034. Other important items of clothing manufacture for the same year were: Shirts, $49,022,845; men's furnishing goods, $43,902,162; and hats and caps, $52,797,697.
Iron and Steel. The United States is abundantly provided by nature with resources that are necessary for the production of iron and its manufacture. (See Mining.) No other industry compares with it in the absolute growth made since 1880. In 1890 the United States led the world in the production of pig iron and steel, and in 1900 its production of pig iron was 46 per cent. greater than that of Great Britain and its production of steel was more than twice as great as that of the rival country. In 1902 the United States produced 15,000,000 tons of steel out of a total world product of 35,000,000. Next to the United States were Germany, with 7,780,000 tons, and Great Britain, with 5,000,000 tons. The following table shows the growth since 1880 of the total iron and steel industry and of its three fundamental divisions: pig iron; steel ingots, steel castings, and rolled iron and steel; and iron blooms, billets, and hammered bar iron:
|Iron and steel total||1900||669||$590,530,484||222,607||29,507,860||$804,034,918|
|Steel ingots and steel castings||1900||438||441,795,983||183,023||15,040,129||596,689,284|
|and rolled iron and steel||1890||395||278,559,831||137,295||7,388,244||331,860,872|
|Iron blooms and||1900||7||508,388||226||15,497||522,432|
|hammered bar iron||1890||20||876,470||471||31,049||1,183,494|
Coke is the principal fuel used in blast furnaces, while bituminous coal and slack are the most important fuel used in the rolling mills and steel works. There has been a great decrease since 1880 in the number of furnaces using charcoal for fuel and also in the number using anthracite alone and mixed anthracite and coke, but an increase in the number using coke or bituminous coal and coke, the latter class numbering 235 in 1900. The production of Bessemer pig iron in the census year amounted to 8,475,530 tons, while that produced by the basic open-hearth method amounted to 937,439 tons. Blast-furnace stacks decreased from 681 in 1880 to 399 in 1900, of which 326 were active. The value of iron rails manufactured decreased from $20,974,097 in 1880 to $31,180 in 1900. The value of steel rails manufactured, on the contrary, increased from $37,892,075 in 1880 to $60,272,575 in 1890, and then decreased to $46,501,979 in 1900, this decrease being due to a fall in price, there having been a large gain in tonnage. The value of iron and steel bars and rods, not including sheet or tin plate bars or wire rods, increased from $56,696,679 in 1880 to $100,597,221 in 1900. Other large items of manufacture in 1900 were iron and steel wire rods, $35,529,529; iron and steel hoops, bands, cotton ties, and skelp, $49,159,747; iron and steel boilers and other plates and sheets, except nail and tack plate, black plates, or sheet for tinning and armor plate, $68,109,223; iron and steel roll blooms, slabs, billets, tin plate bars, and sheet bars, $96,321,887. The following table shows the growth of the industry for the three leading States:
Electric Apparatus and Supplies. There is no industry of so recent development that has attained the magnitude of the electrical apparatus and supply manufacturing business. The total product was valued at only $2,655,036 in 1880, and increased to $91,348,889 in 1900. In the latter year the industry employed 40,890 wage-earners, in 580 establishments. The product comprehended a great variety of things, the most important of which were motors, valued at $19,505,504; dynamos, $10,472,576; and telephones, $10,512,412. The industry centres mainly in a few of the largest cities.
Shipbuilding. Shipbuilding was, after agriculture, the first industry to develop in colonial America. The possession of an abundance of timber has always given the United States a great advantage in the building of wooden vessels. Vessels constructed in the United States carried the bulk of the American trade until after 1860. The zenith of the shipbuilding industry was reached between 1850 and 1860, at which time the superiority of the American-built ‘clippers’ for endurance, speed, and safety was conceded. About the time of the Civil War, which was in itself a serious blow to the industry, the British shipbuilders were changing from sail to steam and from wood to iron in the construction of vessels, neither of which changes was adopted by the American builders. In consequence American shipbuilding failed to hold its own absolutely, and relatively fell far behind foreign countries. For many years American shipyards have done little more than supply vessels for the large domestic water-borne trade, which has by law been restricted to vessels built in the United States. The aggregate tonnage of American-built vessels registered for the foreign trade in 1900 amounted to only 42.2 per cent. of the total product turned out by American shipyards for that year. Only one steel steam vessel was built in the United States during 1900 for the foreign trade. The figures for the construction of iron and steel vessels have been greatly swollen in recent years in meeting the requirements of the Navy Department. The order for warships has been placed with domestic firms, in the belief that it would lead to the equipment of plants in a way that would enable them successfully to engage in the construction of large steel merchant vessels. The value of products for the private iron and steel shipbuilding establishments increased 287 per cent. between 1890 and 1900, but there was a decrease of 3.4 per cent. in the value of products for wooden ship and boat building during the same period. Sixteen and two-tenths per cent. of the total tonnage built in the United States during that year was constructed on the Great Lakes. The Delaware River district is far in the lead in the shipbuilding industry. The Chesapeake Bay is also important. These two regions employ nearly one-half the capital invested in the industry in the United States.
Cars—Steam Railroad. The manufacture of cars has developed rapidly to meet the demands of the growing railroad traffic. According to the census of 1900, 1296 establishments came under the class “cars and general shop construction, and repairs by steam railroad companies,” with 173,652 wage-earners employed, and products aggregating a value of $218,238,277. Under the heading “cars, steam railroad, not including operations of railroad companies,” there were 65 establishments, employing 33,453 wage-earners, and having a product valued at $90,510,180. Between 1890 and 1900 the value of the products of the former class increased 68.6 per cent. and of the latter 29.1 per cent. The industry, particularly the former class, is widely distributed over the country, but is of greatest importance in the region of heaviest railroad traffic, or where supplies of lumber and iron are most convenient. Pennsylvania is far in the, lead, with New York and Illinois following, although Indiana reported the largest value of products for car companies not including railroad companies. In recent years there has been a marked increase in the weight, strength, size, and convenience of cars. (See paragraph Railroads.) Steel is now extensively used to replace or to strengthen wood in car construction. A steel car company of Pittsburg uses over 1600 tons of steel a day, and is the largest single consumer of steel in the world.
Locomotives. During the census year 1900 there were 28 establishments solely or chiefly manufacturing locomotives. At these works 2774 locomotives were built, representing an aggregate value of $27,121,003—an increase in number of 15.2 per cent., and in value of 37.3 per cent. over 1890. In addition, 272 locomotives, valued at $3,276,393, were constructed at 20 railroad repair shops. There is a constant increase in the size, weight, and steam-generating capacity of locomotives constructed. Over one-half of the total number are built in Pennsylvania, Philadelphia having the largest locomotive works in the world. About half of the remainder are manufactured in New York. Since 1894 there has been a rapidly increasing number of locomotives exported (525 in 1900), quickness of delivery, efficiency, and price all being in favor of the American locomotive. The manufacture of traction engines and of motor vehicles has become very important. In 1900, 6132 of the former and 4192 of the latter were manufactured.
Carriages and Wagons. The manufacture of carriages and wagons exceeds in value of products the manufacture of agricultural implements. In the early part of the nineteenth century transportation was still mainly by horseback, and the value of the carriages and wagons manufactured in 1810 was only $1,421,573. In 1900 the corresponding figure had grown to $121,537,276, and the capital invested was nearly as great. There were in that year 7,632 establishments, employing 62,540 wage-earners. In recent years three factors have tended to limit the use and consequently the manufacture of carriages, namely, the bicycle, the electric railway, and the automobile. Ease of access to the supply of hard-wood timber has been an important factor in determining the localization of the industry. The Central States produced (1900) 55.6 per cent. of the total product. Ohio, New York, Indiana, and Michigan, in the order named, lead in the value of product, Indiana having the largest capital invested.
Bicycles and Tricycles. The manufacture of bicycles has developed mainly since 1890. The mimbcr of establishments increased from 27 in 1890 to 312 in 1900, and the value of products from $2,568,326 in the former year to $31,915,908 in the latter. During the middle of that decade the production greatly exceeded that figure. Since 1890 the United States has led the world in the quality and quantity of bicycles produced, and now exports to all countries. Up to 1900 the Patent Office had granted 7,573 patents for cycles and their component parts—the great majority of them since 1890. The Central States produced 58.5 per cent. of the total product, Illinois and Ohio being in the lead.
Agricultural Implements. The manufacture of agricultural implements has developed rapidly since 1850. The total value of products in that year was $6,842,611, and in 1900, $101,207,428. This growth is due priniarily to the increasing demand of the American farmer. Nearly two-thirds of the increase in value of products ($11,243,763) between 1890 and 1900 was due to the rapid increase of exports of agricultural implements during that decade. In 1900 Illinois produced over two-fifths of the total output. It occupied first place in the number of cultivators, harrows, plows, harvesters, and combined harvesters and binders, horse hayrakes, and mowers manufactured, which number includes most of the more elaborate, complicated, and valuable machines. Wisconsin manufactured about one-half the threshers. See under Agriculture.
Musical Instruments and Materials. In 1900 there were 621 establishments manufacturing musical instruments. There were 23,765 wage-earners, and the total product was valued at $44,514,463. The industries consist mainly in the manufacture of pianos, the total value of the manufactured pianos having increased from $5,260,907 in 1860 to $35,428,225 in 1900. For a half century practically all the pianos and most of the other musical instruments used in the United States have been of domestic make. Their manufacture here has been favored by the abundance of wood suitable for sounding boards, as well as for piano cases. Up to the year 1866, 97 per cent. of all the pianos made in the United States were square pianos. In 1900 97.4 per cent. of the pianos were upright. New York, Chicago, and Boston are the chief centres of the industry.
Alcoholic and Malt Liquors. The production of liquors in the United States is about equal to the home consumption. Little (chiefly wine) is imported. In 1900 the value of malt liquors was reported at $237,269,713, distilled liquors at $96,798,443, and vinous liquors at $6,547,310. The first and last estimates included the revenue tax, but only a part of this was included in the estimate for distilled liquors. Malt liquors are of the greater importance by far, the product having increased steadily in amount from 2,006,625 barrels in 1863 to 39,330,849 barrels in 1900. The manufacture of distilled spirits fluctuates enormously from year to year, with only a slight tendency to increase, there being a marked contrast with malt liquors in respect to both steadiness and increase. In 1900 the output amounted to 109,245,187 gallons, which was the largest for any year since 1893. Corn is the principal material used in the production of both, but barley is also extensively used in the manufacture of malt liquors, particularly at Milwaukee, and rye in the manufacture of distilled liquors. The manufacture of both is well distributed over the country. New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Ohio lead in the value of malt products, while Kentucky and Indiana are well in the lead in the production of distilled liquors. The manufacture of commercial wine did not begin until near 1860, and the principal development has been made since 1890. The product is still very small compared with that of many other countries. It was 39,600,000 gallons in 1901. The industry is localized in the grape-growing regions, California being far in the lead, with Ohio and New York next in importance. The capital invested in the manufacture of alcoholic and malt liquors ($457,674,087 in 1900) is much greater than the combined capital of the flour and grist milling and slaughtering and meat-packing industries. The total number of establishments in 1900 was 2835, and the number of wage-earners employed 44,417.
Tobacco. The value of the manufactured tobacco products in 1900 was over four-fifths the value of alcoholic liquors, but the value of the capital invested in the former is less than two-sevenths that in the latter. The amount of the manufactures is adjusted to the home demand, there being but little manufactured tobacco imported and almost none exported. The increase in the value of chewing and smoking tobacco and snuff from $21,820,535 in 1860 to $103,754,362 in 1900, and the increase in the value of cigars and cigarettes during the same period from $9,068,778 to $160,223,152, show a remarkable growth, especially in the latter class of products. In consequence of the competition of the cheap German-made cigars, but few cheap cigars were made in this country prior to the tariff acts between 1860 and 1865. The manufacture of cigarettes began still later, but developed so rapidly that in 1897 it actually exceeded in number the cigars made in that year. Almost the entire cigarette product is manufactured by machinery in large establishments. Of the entire product 94 per cent. is made in New York City, Richmond, Va., Durham, N. C., and Rochester, N. Y. Recent inventions have also made it possible to manufacture cigars by machinery, but this method has not yet come into general use. The hand method makes necessary the employment of a large number of workmen. In 1900 there were 142,277 persons employed in tobacco manufacture, or over three times as many as in the flour and grist milling industry.
Printing and Publishing. The value of products accredited to newspapers and periodicals in 1900 was $222,983,569; to book and job products, $121,799,096; and to music, $2,272,385. The wage-earners employed numbered respectively 94,604, 67,610, and 778. The increased use of labor-saving machinery in printing is evidenced by the fact that while the capital invested increased, between 1890 and 1900, 52.4 per cent. and the value of products increased 24 per cent., the number of wage-earners increased only 10 per cent. The publication of books and magazines is confined mainly to a few of the largest cities. The publication of daily papers is much more widely distributed. The publication of weekly papers is even more widely distributed, the weekly being as a rule the only newspaper taken in rural communities. In almost every incorporated town there is a weekly. The publishing-houses in America have profited greatly, since 1890, from the reduced price of paper, due to its manufacture from wood pulp. See the articles on Newspaper; Periodical; Printing.
Tin and Terne Plate. The manufacture of tin and terne plate is one of the newest industries in the country, having developed wholly since 1890. In 1900 there were 22 establishments devoted entirely to tin terne dipping, 35 others that combined with this the manufacture of black plate, and 9 others that were restricted to the making of black plate. The total value of the product was $61,912,619, of which $31,892,011 was accredited to tin terne dipping. There were 14,826 wage-earners engaged in the industry. Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana lead.
Wood Pulp and Paper. The utilization of the forest resources of the country for the manufacture of paper has developed mainly since 1890. In the $70,530,236 which represented the total cost of products in 1900, wood pulp was the principal item, and the cost of rags, old paper, and manila stock, which 50 years before were the only materials used for paper-making, was only $13,902,092. Spruce constituted 70 per cent. of all wood used in the manufacture of wood pulp, poplar being the only other variety extensively used. The wood-pulp industry is generally located near the source of supply of wood and where water power is available. New England, New York, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin represent the bulk of the industry. Water power in 1900 constituted two-thirds of the total power used by mills for grinding the wood and for the beating and washing machines, while merely steam power is used for the paper machines. New York leads in the production of newspaper and wrapping paper. Massachusetts is the largest consumer of rags from which are produced writing and other fine papers. The Middle West still consumes large quantities of straw in the manufacture of paper, Indiana being well in the lead. The total value of products for the paper and pulp industry increased from $78,937,184 in 1890 to $127,326,162 in 1900. In the latter year 49,646 wage-earners were employed in 763 establishments.
Turpentine and Resin. The pine forests of the Southern States—particularly Georgia and Florida—are valuable as a source of supply of turpentine, resin, and related products. According to the census estimates, the value of the combined product increased from $8,077,379 in 1890 to $20,344,888 in 1900. In the latter year there were 1503 establishments engaged in the industry. The average number of wage-earners employed was 41,864.
Clay Products. Clay suitable for industrial utilization is found in almost every section of the country. The period 1880-1890 was one of remarkable growth in the production of clay products, the value of products having gained 114.8 per cent. during that period. The corresponding figure for the following decade was 64 per cent., the value in 1900 being $95,533,862. There were in that year 105,693 wage-earners employed in 6423 establishments. Of the total output, $78,336,447 represented the value of the brick, tile, and terra-cotta products, about one-half of which was accredited to common brick. Brick is manufactured in almost every part of the country in quantities sufficient to meet the local demands. The pottery products were valued at $17,197,415. This industry is chiefly in two localities, one in New Jersey and the other in eastern Ohio.
Glass. The glass industry has made a decided growth during every decade since 1850, and the value of products has increased over eleven-fold since that time. In 1900 there were 355 glass manufacturing establishments, 52,818 wage-earners being employed. The value of products was estimated at $56,539,712. Natural gas is the most desirable fuel for use in this industry, and the recent development of the industry has been mainly in the gas fields. In 1900 Pennsylvania produced 38.9 per cent, of the total product, Indiana 26.1 per cent., and Ohio 8.1 per cent. An excellent glass sand is found in southern New Jersey, and this is the only important glass manufacturing region on the Atlantic coast.
Chemicals. The American chemical-manufacturing industry has never possessed the advantage of having a large number of highly skilled chemical specialists employed in its service. In 1900 only 276 chemists were employed in the establishments covered by the census. Moreover, the laws of the United States give the foreigner the monopoly of a patent without requiring that the protected article shall be made where the patent is issued. The United States therefore is seriously handicapped in competition with the Germans. Transportation costs, however, have favored the home manufacturer of heavy chemicals, and their production has accordingly increased rapidly. The following table shows the growth of the industry in 1890-1900:
value of, 1900
value of, 1900
value of, 1890
|Paints and varnishes||615||60,834,921||9,782||69,922,022||71,313,392||52,908,252|
The manufacture of fertilizers is mainly confined to the Atlantic Coast States. The phosphate mines of some of the Southern States supply a large part of the raw materials used in their manufacture. The manufacture of paints and varnishes, explosives and chemicals, is well distributed over the country. New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey being especially prominent in the production of chemicals.
Rubber Boots and Shoes. Since the granting of the Goodyear patent in 1844 the manufacture of rubber boots and shoes has developed into a large industry. The value of the product increased from $9,705,724 in 1880 to $41,089,819 in 1900, the number of establishments from 9 to 22, and the number of wage-earners from 4662 to 14,391. The industry is mainly confined to Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.
Leather and Its Finished Products. See table of production under Leather.
In recent years there has been a rapid centralization of the tanning industry. This is due partly to the radical changes which have been made since 1880 in the processes and machinery of manufacture, giving large plants an economic advantage, and partly to the combination of sole-leather tanneries with those producing upper leather. During the decade 1890-1900 the capital invested increased 77.4 per cent. Hemlock and oak bark still furnish the great bulk of the material upon which the manufacturers of leather rely for their tannin. Advantages in securing this supply is one of the factors which determine the location of tanneries. This accounts for the enormous recent development of the industry in Wisconsin and some other States. Pennsylvania has twice the production of any other State, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Wisconsin ranking next in order.
One of the most distinct triumphs of American industry has been made in the manufacture of boots and shoes. Probably no other industry has been so completely revolutionized. Previous to 1845 the industry was strictly a hand process; to-day the shoe factory provides a perfect system of continuous manufacture, involving, in some instances, more than 100 operations. Beginning with the leather-rolling machine, there followed rapidly the wax-thread sewing machine, the peg-making machine, and peg-driving machine, and other machines, of which the most important was the McKay sewing machine, which has perhaps done more to revolutionize the manufacture of shoes than any other single machine. Important inventions are continuously being added to the list. As a result there has been a decided centralization of the industry, the number of establishments having decreased from 2082 in 1890 to 1600 in 1900, and a decided increase in the number of wage-earners relative to the value of products. In 1900 the number of wage-earners was only about one-half greater than in 1850, whereas the value of products was nearly 6 times as great in the later as in the earlier year. There is also an increase in the number of women and children employed. Of the 142,000 factory hands in 1900, 47,186 were women and 4521 children. American shoes are exported in large quantities.
Until well along in the nineteenth century the industry was confined almost wholly to eastern Massachusetts, and that State produced over three-sevenths of the total product in 1900. For a number of years, however, the industry has been rapidly developing in other regions, and almost the entire gain for the decade 1890-1900 was made outside Massachusetts, there being a decided decrease of capital reported for that State. The largest increase was made in Ohio and Missouri, but New York and New Hampshire still rank second and third respectively.
The manufacture of saddlery and harness, particularly the latter, is widely distributed, being usually carried on by small establishments intended to supply the local demand. In the decade 1890-1900 there was a gain in the number of establishments amounting to 63.1 per cent. There is a greater centralization in the manufacture of pocketbooks, trunks, and valises. The manufacture of leather gloves and mittens employed 14,436 persons in 1900, of whom 9754 were women. The value of the product for that year was $17,048,656.
Slaughtering and Meat-Packing. In 1850 slaughtering and meat-packing was of little importance as a specialized industry, the value of the product for that year being only $11,981,642. Before 1890, however, the industry had become the most important of the industries manufacturing food products, and in 1900 was far in the lead, with a total value of products estimated at $785,562,433. There was a proportional increase in the capital invested, which amounted in 1900 to $189,198,264, this being less than the total capital invested in flour and grist milling. In the same year there were 68,534 persons employed. A number of factors have conspired to bring about this most remarkable expansion of the industry. The growth in stock-raising and the increase of the population are, of course, important considerations, but the development of the industry has been out of all proportion to either of these. Formerly much of the slaughtering was done by the stock-raiser himself, and the local supply sufficed in most communities. But as large centres of population, developed at a distance from the greater stock-raising regions, created a need for the packing and preserving of meats, a greater specialization of the industry, better facilities of communication, and the devising of processes of preservation and especially of refrigeration made this possible. The refrigerator car, first used in 1869, marked an epoch in the industry, since it made possible the shipment of fresh beef. Refrigeration made possible the continuation of the industry throughout the year, and shipments to foreign countries. (For meat exports, see section Commerce.) The exportation of fresh beef began in 1876. About the same time labor-saving devices were adopted and every part of the animal began to be utilized. The decade 1870-80 witnessed the first rapid specialization and centralization of the industry. During that period the value of products increased 300.3 per cent., while the number of establishments increased only 13.5 per cent. In the decade 1890-1900, although the value of products increased 39.9 per cent., the number of establishments decreased from 1118 to 921. The industry has tended to localize near the producing regions at points which have the greatest advantages of transportation. About 1850 the Ohio Valley was the great producing region, and the river towns, with Cincinnati and Louisville in the lead, were the centres of slaughtering and meat-packing. With the subsequent development of stock-raising in Illinois, Iowa, and other Upper Mississippi Valley States, together with the unequaled transportation advantages of Chicago, that city has attained an importance in slaughtering and meat-packing that is unapproached by any other city in the world. The value of products of 1890 was 36.3 per cent., and in 1900 32.7 per cent. of the total for the United States. The relative decrease is the result of the development of the industry in other centres, nearer to the producing region, especially Kansas City, South Omaha, Saint Joseph, Saint Louis, and elsewhere in the Southwest and Northwest. The packing of meats is almost wholly carried on west of the Alleghanies, but New York and other Atlantic Coast centres slaughter extensively for the local market. The value of the hogs slaughtered is considerably in excess of the value of beeves slaughtered. About five-sixths of the beef is sold fresh, while only about two-sevenths of the pork is sold in this form.
Transportation—Railways. The great industrial progress after 1850 was made possible largely by railways. The construction of railways in the United States began toward the close of the decade 1820-30. Their introduction had been preceded by the inauguration of a vast system of canals, the Erie Canal, which was to remain long the principal artery of transportation between the East and West, having been opened in 1825. The growth of the railway system was extremely rapid from the beginning. The mileage increased from 23 in 1830 to 2818 in 1840 and 9021 in 1850. Over much of the country railways preceded industries, and certain industrial developments, such as those of iron and coal and of agriculture in the West, could not have taken place on any great scale without railway advantages. The growth of American railways, in which, it is estimated, from one-seventh to one-fifth of the country's capital is now invested, is shown in the following table (the mileage given being exclusive of elevated city passenger lines):
|DIVISIONS OF STATES||1850||1860||1870||1880||1890||1895||1899||1900||1901|
|Gulf and Mississippi Valley||416||3,727||5,106||6,995||13,342.66||14,459.03||15,717.67||16,211.42||16,643.42|
|Total United States||9,021||30,626||52,922||93,262||166,703.36||181,114.94||190,817.58||194,333.59||198,787.30|
The rate of growth has greatly fluctuated. Checked by the Civil War, the mileage nearly doubled between 1865 and 1873. From the latter year to 1879 construction was reduced, but it then revived and, with a short interruption in 1884-85, advanced rapidly until 1893, and again continued after 1898. The year 1887 exceeded all others, with 12,876 miles. Prior to 1850 construction was mainly in the Atlantic Coast States, but in 1850-60 noteworthy gains were made in the North Central States and in the South. In 1852 rail connection was established between Chicago and the Atlantic Coast, and in 1869 between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. In 1870-80 there were important gains in the Upper Mississippi Valley and in eastern Texas, which was the first Southern State to show activity in railway construction after the war. In 1880-90 the Southern States doubled their mileage. Since 1895 (in which year there was the least construction after the Civil War, 1650 miles) the most rapid progress has been between the Gulf of Mexico and the Kansas and Missouri rivers. The greatest railway density is in the region north of the Ohio and Potomac rivers. New Jersey leads with 30 miles of line for each 100 square miles of area.
Among the factors that hastened railway development were the business rivalry between cities or sections, subsidies in one form or another, and the small cost of right of way. State grants in aid (many of them land grants) were common until 1861, when the Federal Government began to make land grants directly to the companies. The first line reaching the Pacific received grants of 33,000,000 acres in addition to a large loan based upon mileage and difficulty of construction. The total Congressional land grants between 1850 and 1871 amounted to 155,000,000 acres, but of these only 97,976,637 acres were patented up to 1902.
In general American railways have been constructed more cheaply than British or Western European, but improvements have been made as warranted by traffic. Thus there is great inequality in the condition of American roads. In 1900 there were 192,556 miles of single track, 12,151 miles of second track, 1094 miles of third track, and 829 miles of fourth track, exclusive of yard tracks and sidings.
The tendency toward railway consolidation appeared soon after 1850. Keen competition did not come until after the Civil War, notably in 1869, when the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central made their connections with Chicago. The development of the ‘parallel’ lines, or two or more railways connecting the same points, so intensified competition that the companies were forced to seek among themselves some relief. Thus arose, between 1870 and 1880, the ‘pools,’ or agreements between companies in regard to the distribution of traffic or the benefits of traffic. The prohibition of pools by the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 renewed competition, to escape which the railway companies came to secret understandings, and ‘traffic associations’ were formed to fix a ‘fair proportion’ of the traffic for each railroad involved. In 1897 this form of cooperation was declared illegal by the United States Supreme Court. Thereafter agreements between companies as to rates and the distribution of traffic benefits were more informal, but, according to the Interstate Commerce Commission, the court decisions have had “no practical effect upon the railway operations of the country;” while, in respect to the organization of railways, the inconveniences in the way of ‘mutual understandings’ accelerated consolidation, notably after 1898. Thus in 1902 more than two-thirds of the total mileage of the United States was included in eight groups of railway interests. See the articles Canal; Express; Interstate Commerce Act; Post-Office; Railways; Steam Navigation; Street Railways; Telegraph; Telephone; Transportation.
Foreign Commerce. The United States does not hold so high a rank in respect to the magnitude of its foreign trade as it does in that of agriculture, manufactures, mining, and transportation. Until near the end of the nineteenth century the foreign trade of the United Kingdom was twice as great, while the foreign trade of Germany still exceeds that of the United States by a considerable margin. The commerce of the United Kingdom ranges from 3 to 4 times as great per capita as does that of the United States. As in the other industries, the chief development has occurred since the middle of the nineteenth century. There was a period, however, in the early years of the nation when the commerce (including re-exports) was greater per capita than it has since been. Through the navigation laws (see paragraphs on History), England sought to place limitations on the production and trade of the American Colonies. But through a lack of the means for enforcing the laws and the tacit recognition of a policy of ‘salutary neglect,’ the laws were evaded throughout the greater part of the Colonial period. The majority of Colonial merchants were smugglers, and an extensive non-English trade developed, the most important being with the West Indies. The total foreign trade of the thirteen Colonies is estimated to have increased from a value of $12,000,000 in 1750 to $30,000,000 in 1771, the exports amounting respectively to $2,800,000 and $11,000,000. In 1763 England's attitude toward the Colonies was radically changed; the navigation laws were modified and a rigid enforcement of them was begun in order to collect a greater revenue. This new policy helped greatly to precipitate the Revolution. After the war Great Britain subjected the newly independent States to the trade restrictions of the old navigation laws, much to the injury of the States, which were helpless under the Articles of Confederation. The situation hastened the formation and adoption of the new Constitution, under which Congress immediately began retaliatory measures. Discriminating duties were placed upon goods not imported in American vessels. Reciprocal commercial privileges had been secured in the case of some but not all of the European countries, and with the coming of the Napoleonic wars, which created a special demand for breadstuffs, Europe was glad to avail itself of the advantages of American commerce. Our foreign trade jumped from $43,000,000 in 1791 to $247,000,000 in 1807. Of the latter amount $108,500,000 represented exports, of which over half were re-exports. America had become, in proportion to population, the leading commercial nation of the world. The embargo and non-intercourse acts and the War of 1812 greatly reduced the volume of American commerce. In the first two years after the war (1815-1816) there was a rapid revival of trade, and the imports exceeded those of any earlier year; but after 1818 there was a steady decline in commerce until 1830, when the American imports amounted to $62,000,000 and the exports to $71,000,000. It is noteworthy that the rapid development of the country west of the Appalachians had prior to this time added scarcely anything to the commerce of the country. So great were the difficulties of transportation that that section was rendered economically almost independent. The South was not so severely handicapped, especially with regard to exporting cotton, the many navigable streams affording a means of conveying the cotton to the coast. After 1830 trade increased rapidly until 1836, when the American exports amounted to $124,000,000 and the imports to $177,000,000. This was the result in a large measure of the improvements of steam navigation and of canal construction (which afforded a profitable trade with the interior), and of the rapid increase in the production and shipments of cotton. After the panic of 1837 the foreign trade was again backward for a period of ten years. In 1846 the foreign trade was no greater than in 1816, after a period of thirty years. The year 1847 was the beginning of a new era in the foreign trade of the United States. Since that year the trade has rapidly expanded, subject to fluctuation, however, during the Civil War period and the panics of 1873 and 1893. The value of the imports and exports in 1902 was ten times that of 1846, while the population in the latter year was only about four times as great. The following statement of the general trade by decades is fairly indicative of its growth:
A number of factors aided in the development of commerce about the middle of the century. Among these were the enormous production of gold in California and the repeal of the Corn Laws in Great Britain. But greatest were the rapid development of the interior and the radical improvements in transportation through the construction of railroads and the improvement of steam navigation. It was at about this time, moreover, that machinery began to play an important part in the agricultural and other industries—a movement which is carried to such an extent that the per capita production of American laborers is greater than that in any other country. In consequence there has been a large surplus of products for foreign shipment, and an increasing ability to purchase those products which are not produced at home. From the foregoing table it may be seen that there has been a change from an excess of imports to an excess of exports. This change occurred about 1875, since which year the exports have exceeded the imports, except in the years 1888, 1889, and 1893. The excess of exports in the earlier years of that period was due to the enormous increase in the shipment of raw products, particularly farm products. Exports of these have grown less rapidly in recent years, and the excess of exports since 1896 is largely due to the sudden increase of exports of manufactured products. The imports of manufactured goods decreased from 40 per cent. of the total imports in 1860 to 15 per cent. in 1900. Exports of manufactured goods meanwhile increased slowly from 12.76 per cent. of the total exports in 1860 to 21.14 per cent. in 1894, then advanced rapidly to 31.65 per cent. in 1900, having since fallen a little under that amount. In 1895 the value of exported manufactures was $183,595,743 and in 1902, $403,641,401. The nature of American exports, therefore, is determined by the great abundance of raw products and the advantage thus given, together with the use of machinery in producing machine-made products economically. It also is influenced by the fact that the Western European peoples do not produce enough to supply the whole market, thereby creating a demand for the American surplus products. The American exports consist, therefore, of raw or slightly manufactured products sent to Europe and manufactured products sent to all parts of the world. The imports into the United States consist of raw products which cannot be produced in this country—or which are produced in sufficient quantities—and products which can be produced more economically in other regions. The latter comprise mainly food products and materials for use in manufacturing. A considerable portion, however, consists in manufactures in which cheaply paid European and Oriental hand-labor enters largely, and with which highly paid American labor cannot compete. It also consists of products of highly skilled labor, skill which accrues with the long establishment of an industry and which Americans have not yet acquired. The following table shows the growth of the export trade:
Domestic Exports 1800-1903.
It is noteworthy that after a decade in which no progress was made in the exports of agricultural products (1880-1890), they have again rapidly advanced. The agricultural group includes a number of products usually classed as manufactured, such as flour, meats, etc. Of the agricultural exports, those intended as food are in the aggregate far in the lead. The three principal exports of food in the fiscal year 1903, with their values, were as follows: breadstuffs, $221,242,285; meat and dairy products, $179,839,714; and animals, $34,781,193. Cotton is the largest single item of export, and ranks second to the large group of breadstuffs. The most important items among the breadstuffs are wheat and flour, the average exports of which for the period 1867-72 were 35,500,000 bushels, or 15.53 per cent. of the total production. The exports then rose until the period 1879-83, when the average was 157,566,000 bushels, or 34.91 per cent. of the total production. For the next ten years the exports were much less, absolutely and relatively, but increased during the period 1894-99 to an average of 170,098,000 bushels, or 34.63 per cent. European countries have always entertained a prejudice against corn as a food, but this prejudice seems to have weakened in recent years. The exportation of corn, including corn meal, increased from an average of 14,200,000 bushels in the period 1867-72 to an average of 127,400,000 bushels in the period 1894-99. The exports of the earlier period constituted 1.54 per cent. of the total production, and in the latter 6.56 per cent. Thus corn bids fair soon to become a rival of wheat as an export, in value as well as in volume. The greater part of the exportation in meats consists of hog products, amounting in the year 1903 to $112,110,602, as against $38,470,958 for beef products. The exports of hog products increased rapidly with the development of the slaughtering industry, the total value having increased from $15,309,647 in 1870 to $86,687,858 in 1878, after which they fluctuated about that figure and did not show any tendency to rise until 1898. The exports of bacon in 1903 were valued at $22,178,525, hams at $25,712,633, and lard at $50,854,504, the latter having made a large gain since 1898. Pork is shipped mainly in the salted or pickled form. Exports of beef did not attain any great growth until after the recent facilities for chilling and transporting meats had been introduced. With these improvements there has been a change from salted to fresh beef in the shipments, the latter variety constituting nearly three-fourths of the total beef shipment in 1903. In that year there were over $20,000,000 worth of ‘other meat’ products exported, over one-half of which was oleomargarine. The value of dairy products exported for that year was only $4,775,582. The exports of live animals consist chiefly of cattle. Their exportation did not take firm hold until 1879. In the year 1890 there was a striking advance in the shipment of cattle, but since that year there have been no decided tendencies toward increase or decrease. The value of exports of cattle in 1903 was $29,848,936. The Anglo-Boer War greatly increased the exportation of horses and mules, the exports of the former in 1902 being valued at $10,048,046.
| YEAR ENDING
| Iron and steel
| Mineral oils,
| Paraffin and
The exports of cotton in 1903 amounted to 3,543,043,022 pounds (value $316,180,429), which was about two and one-half times the quantity exported in 1876. For most of the intervening years the per cent. of the total crop exported has been between sixty-five and seventy, and there is no tendency to change the ratio. Among other agricultural products exported, the most important are: tobacco, valued in 1903 at $35,250,893; oil cake and oil-cake meal, $19,743,711; and cotton-seed oil, $14,211,244. From the table it will be seen that there have been significant increases in the exports of mining and of forest products, but not enough to affect greatly the percentage which they constitute of the total. The largest item in the group of minerals exported is coal, while boards and naval stores are the largest items in the exports of forest products. The preceding table shows the growth in the exportation of the ten principal articles of domestic manufacture, which together form about 80 per cent. of the total manufactures exported.
The exports of iron and steel include a large list of articles, chief of which are locks, hinges, and other builders' hardware, electrical machinery, wire, pipes, and fittings, steel rails, sewing machines, locomotive engines, and structural iron-work and steel. About five-sixths of the total value of mineral oils exported is represented by illuminating oils. The extraordinary growth in the exports of cotton manufactures has taken place mainly since 1893, and is the result of the increased use of electricity, in connection with which most of the product is utilized. One-half of the exports of cotton manufactures is represented by uncolored cloths. The most rapid growth in the exportation of leather and its manufactures in recent years has been in upper leather, and in boots and shoes. In 1895, 822,412 pairs of boots and shoes were exported, and in 1902, 3,966,766 pairs. Nearly one-half of the value of exported agricultural implements is represented by mowers and reapers. The following table shows the growth of the importation of merchandise into the United States for consumption; the percentage figures indicate the proportion of the specified classes to the total imports:
|YEAR|| Articles manufactured
wholly or partially
for use as materials
in mechanic arts
of all classes
| Crude articles |
The table reveals the effect of the establishment of manufactures in the United States; in fact, imports of manufactures have increased absolutely but little in recent years, and for a long period of years have tended to decrease relatively, while at the same time the importation of crude articles for domestic industries has increased both absolutely and relatively. The importation of materials for manufacturing ($415,151,874 in 1902) greatly exceeds the imports of manufactures, and even the exports of manufactures. The importation of food and live animals has begun to decline absolutely and relatively. The bulk of the food group is sugar and coffee, amounting in 1902 to $55,061,097 and $70,982,155, respectively, and constituting the two largest items of importation into the United States. The only other large food item in imports is fruit and nuts, the value in 1902 being $21,480,525. The largest items in the group of ‘crude articles’ imported in 1902, with their respective values, were: hides and skins, $58,250,834; silk manufactures, $42,631,615; rubber and gutta percha, crude, $27,094,622; fibres, vegetables and textile grasses, $31,526,674; copper manufactures, $24,865,301; tin in bars, etc., $19,463,736; chemicals, drugs, and dyes, $19,818,689; and wool, hair of the camel, goat, alpaca, etc., $18,466,122. The principal item in the group headed “partially or wholly manufactured, etc.” was chemicals, drugs, and dyes, not elsewhere specified, valued in 1902 at $35,286,164. Of imported articles ready for consumption and luxuries, the most important was cotton goods, $44,460,126, of which laces, edgings, etc., constituted over one-half; this was followed by manufactures of fibres, $39,036,364; silk, $32,640,242; iron and steel manufactures, $27,180,247; diamonds and jewelry, $25,990,570; and manufactures of wool, camel's hair, etc., $17,384,463. As compared with 1901 there were large increases in the imports of cotton goods, manufactures of fibres, and jewelry. Iron and silk remained about the same, while manufactures of wool, camel's hair, etc., decreased over one-half.
The bulk of the foreign trade of the United States is by sea and with non-contiguous countries. In 1903 the imports by way of the Atlantic ports constituted 80.06 per cent. of the total imports and the exports 63.6 per cent. of the total exports. The Government reports show, however, that from 1893 to 1903 the percentage of gain was greater for the Pacific ports than for the Atlantic. During that period the Atlantic ports showed an increase of 14 per cent. in imports and 46 per cent. in exports, while the Pacific ports showed gains of 17 per cent. in imports and 87 per cent. in exports. The imports by way of the Gulf ports for the same period showed an increase of but 1 per cent. and the exports an increase of only 6 per cent. Of the foreign trade of the United States during the fiscal year 1903, 64.5 per cent. was with the Continent of Europe, and the bulk of this was with the four Western European countries, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and the Netherlands. The protective tariff of some of the European countries greatly restricts our exports to them, as in the case of France, and in the case of some almost prohibits our exports, as Austria-Hungary. The United Kingdom accepts our exports free of duty, and constitutes by far the greatest market of the world for American products. In 1903 the exports to the United Kingdom amounted to $524,691,638 as against $504,896,090 for the remainder of Europe. If with the United Kingdom are included the other parts of the British Empire, it is found that the American exports to the Empire constitute more than half of the entire American export trade. In the import trade of the United States, however, Europe, especially the United Kingdom, is of much less importance, as can be seen in the table on page 680, showing the foreign trade with the principal countries of the world.
In the case of a number of countries outside of Europe the balance of trade is against the United States. The following table shows what part the United States played in the total foreign trade of the different continents of the world in 1897:
| Imports from U.S.
Per cent. of
| Exports to the U. S. |
Per cent. of
|North America (except U. S.)||42.90||34.23|
The corresponding percentage of imports from the United States to the United Kingdom varied within the compass 26.5 per cent., and 34 per cent. during the period 1888 to 1898, while the exports to the United States constituted from 21 to 14 per cent. of its foreign exports. The imports of Germany from the United States rose from 7.9 per cent, of its total imports in 1889 to 14.1 per cent. in 1897, its exports to the United States meanwhile varying from 9.1 per cent. to 12.5 per cent. of its total exports. The largest Asiatic customer of the United States is Japan, which the United States supplied in 1898 with 14.2 per cent, of its total imports, taking 29.1 per cent. of its exports. The favorable one-sided trade with Europe is explained by the fact that Europe requires the great bulk of the American surplus products for food for its people and raw materials for its manufactures, while, on the other hand, Europe has little that the United States desires, besides manufactures, and in these the United States is becoming more and more independent. The unfavorable one-sided trade with South America and some other countries, mostly tropical, has a partial explanation in the fact that they are the great producers of the raw products which are for climatic or other reasons insufficiently produced in the United States; nor do they need the raw products of the United States, and have not yet advanced to an industrial stage requiring much of our manufactured products. The latter part of the explanation is not altogether satisfactory, since those countries import large quantities of manufactured products from Europe. The condition of the trade of the United States with South America is by far the most unsatisfactory aspect of our foreign commerce. Much of the blame for the small exports of the United States to South America has been credited to American shipping and to American capitalists and merchants. Many European lines carry on trade with South America, but only a few United States lines (see section Shipping); and the freight rates of these are much higher than those of European lines. Flour has been shipped to Europe and thence reshipped to the West Indies cheaper than it could have been sent by direct shipment. American capitalists have found profitable investment at home, and have not been induced to take many risks in South America. American mcrchants refuse to give so long a credit period as the Europeans do, and have not studied closely the nature of the wants of that region, nor have they contrived methods to deliver goods in a style most suitable to the tastes of the people, as have their European competitors. The trade of the United States with Mexico and Central America, on the contrary, is developing rapidly. In 1897 73.64 per cent. of the Mexican exports were sent to the United States, and 49.29 per cent. of the Mexican imports were received from the United States. The corresponding figures for Central America were respectively 36.72 per cent. and 36.71 per cent. The West Indian trade with the United States is less satisfactory, the corresponding per cent. being 26.49 per cent. and 19.82 per cent. For the trade relations with Porto Rico, Philippines, Hawaii, etc., see under section Colonies.
Imports and Exports of Domestic and Foreign Merchandise. Year Ending June 30
|Russia, Baltic and White Seas||3,031,479||7,731,441||2,035,581||13,399,370|
|Russia, Black Sea||2,703,617||1,508,341||266,242||2,723,258|
|Sweden and Norway||4,176,384||4,905,234||4,084,704||10,160,874|
|Turkey in Europe||2,215,464||5,672,578||45,889||496,785|
|Greenland, Iceland, etc.||110,613||100,606||2,800||508|
|Azores and Madeira Islands||27,011||16,588||293,887||369,405|
|Malta, Gozo, etc.||...................||20,043||...................||453,529|
|Total West Indies||$102,703,617||$91,806,863||$44,504,651||$50,879,423|
|British North America:|
|Quebec, Ontario, etc.||$29,186,239||$37,942,258||$41,300,151||$109,828,167|
|Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, etc.||5,706,714||10,375,215||3,662,101||7,639,179|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||408,879||868,238||1,834,177||2,509,415|
|Total British North America||$38,186,342||$55,528,648||$48,628,508||$126,981,831|
|Central American States:|
|Total Central American States||$8,304,946||$10,258,921||$6,522,586||$6,139,791|
|Miquelon, Langley, etc.||67,691||18,668||197,226||191,150|
|Total North America||$183,732,712||$209,103,220||$119,788,889||$237,804,405|
|Total South America||$102,207,815||$107,413,030||$32,639,077||$41,114,601|
|Total East Indies||$34,665,142||$66,052,233||$4,492,385||$6,121,691|
|Turkey in Asia||3,533,197||4,897,428||132,786||276,247|
|All other Asia||75,276||212,268||139,039||77,004|
|Turkey in Africa:|
|All other Africa||1,080,539||173,261||412,507||297,408|
|All other countries||$59,509||...................||...................||...................|
|All other countries||59,509||...................||...................||...................|
In the United States trade with Great Britain in recent years there has been a rapid increase in our exports, while the imports have actually declined. (See table.) The United Kingdom is the largest market for the United States for food products, manufacturers' materials, and manufactured products. Raw cotton is the largest single item in its imports, being valued in 1903 at $124,789,603. It is, however, exceeded by the combined imports of animals and animal products, and is rivaled by the aggregate imports of breadstuffs. The United Kingdom annually takes from one-half to two-thirds of the total United States exports of wheat and flour, the value of wheat imports in 1903 being $36,139,752, and flour $37,837,512. The United Kingdom's imports of American corn the same year were valued at $17,081,693. In 1903 the United Kingdom took live cattle to the value of $26,597,390 out of a total shipment valued at $29,848,936. Canada and in recent years Argentina compete with the United States in this trade, but the United States still supplies the United Kingdom with from three-fifths to two-thirds of its imports of live cattle. The United States also supplies the United Kingdom with over two-thirds of its imports of fresh beef, Australia being the chief competitor. The United States is the United Kingdom's chief source of supply for bacon and hams. The latter country annually receives over two-thirds of the United States exports of these products and about one-third of its exports of lard. Of the total exports of manufactured products in 1902, nearly one-half went to Europe, and one-half of these went to the United Kingdom. The value of this class of exports to the United Kingdom increased from $40,000,000 in 1892 to $100,000,000 in 1902. The articles exported are remarkably comprehensive in their scope. The prominent items include leather, machinery, copper work, wood manufactures, petroleum, and paraffin. One hundred locomotives have been exported in a single year, besides large numbers of printing presses and typesetting machines. The chief imports of the United States from the United Kingdom and their values in 1902 were as follows: Cotton goods, $16,376,611; manufactured fibres, $21,077,326; iron and steel manufactures, $15,040,085; and woolen goods, $7,473,587. With Germany, the second greatest customer of the United States, the balance of trade is growing in favor of the United States. The largest export of the United States to that empire is also cotton, valued in 1903 at $84,824,284. Germany depends upon the United States for its supply of lard, the imports of which in 1903 were valued at $15,448,598. Imports of other varieties of pork products have been greatly limited through adverse legislation. Germany is becoming an important market for American breadstuffs. The manufactured products supplied Germany by the United States increased from less than $10,000,000 in 1882 to $54,000,000 in 1902. The chief imports into the United States from Germany consist of chemicals, drugs, etc., valued in 1902 at $16,166,775; cotton goods, $11,071,974; and iron and steel products, $6,161,651. The French tariffs have thrown the balance of trade against the United States. The principal exports of the United States to France are cotton, copper products, wheat, and petroleum. The United States receives a large part of its silk and elaborately wrought goods from France.
Shipping. Foreign. The United States is far in advance of all other nations in the magnitude of its domestic shipping, but in its foreign shipping, when the vastness of its foreign trade is considered, it holds a very low rank. Indeed, American foreign shipping presents a most marked contrast to all other groups of industry in the United States. Whereas, as has been seen above, other industries have had a most remarkable development since the middle of the nineteenth century, American foreign shipping has since that time suffered an extraordinary decadence. Until about 1860 there was no other industry more flourishing. Shipbuilding and shipping dates from the very beginning of the colonial period, and together with fishing was the most important industry of the New England colonies. The navigation laws of the mother country tended, on the whole, to foster colonial shipping. The first Congress under the present Constitution, in order to provide for and protect American shipping, placed discriminating duties on goods imported under foreign flags, and tonnage taxes upon the vessels which bore it. The long period of European wars gave American shipping as neutral vessels an advantage in the foreign carrying trade, and the aggregate registered tonnage increased from 123,893 tons, carrying 23.6 per cent. of the American foreign trade, in 1789, to 597,777 tons in 1797, and 981,019 tons in 1810, carrying 91.5 per cent. of the American foreign trade. The tonnage then declined somewhat for a long period, but began to revive about 1840, and in 1847 amounted to 1,047,454 tons, carrying 81.1 per cent. of the American foreign trade, and continuing to increase until 1861, when the tonnage amounted to 2,496,894 tons, carrying 65.2 per cent. of the American foreign trade. A large part of the tonnage, however, was engaged in non-American trade, and it is estimated that the aggregate American tonnage was 50 per cent. greater than that necessary to carry the American trade. If to this tonnage were added that engaged in the coastwise trade in fishing and interior shipping, raising the aggregate to 5,539,813 tons, it is found that it is almost as great as the total tonnage of Great Britain and its dependencies (5,895,369 tons) in the same year. The States had an advantage over Great Britain in that they possessed abundant supplies of timber—the chief material used in ship construction. At the same time they had departed from British models and had developed a type of ship that was safer and speedier than those of their foreign competitors, so that the demand for them was great, and the freight rates were in their favor. Great Britain sought to free itself from this handicap by changing from sail to steam navigation, a policy encouraged by the Government through the granting of subsidies to steamship lines. The United States Government a few years later (1845) began a similar policy by an act intended to give mail contracts to steamships, and, in 1847, by authorizing the construction of seven merchant steamers for mail purposes. The tonnage of steam vessels then increased rapidly from 16,000 tons in 1848 to 62,390 in 1851, which was almost equal to that of the United Kingdom in the same year. The United States reduced its mail subsidies, and after the total steam tonnage had reached the maximum of 115,045 tons in 1855 it decreased until after the Civil War. A more efficient method of the British in removing their handicap was to change from wood to iron, and later to steel, as the principal material used in ship construction. Iron and steel vessels could be built larger and otherwise contribute to making possible cheaper freights. The British had iron in abundance, whereas the United States had not produced it in large quantities, and the tariff prevented its importation. The decline in American shipping had actually begun before the war. During the war period Confederate warships drove most of the American shipping from the seas, and one-fourth of the total tonnage was sold. The war, on the other hand, gave an impetus to British shipbuilding and shipping. The United States tonnage was reduced to 1,486,749 tons in 1864, carrying 27.5 per cent. of the foreign trade. After standing at about that figure until 1879, it began to decline, until in 1898, when it was only 726,213 tons, carrying 9.3 per cent. of the foreign trade, and in 1902, 873,235 tons, carrying 8.8 per cent, of the foreign trade. The American steam tonnage registered in the foreign trade increased from 224,100 tons in 1894 to 398,000 tons in 1902. The following table shows the share that was carried under the American flag in 1899 of the foreign sea trade of the United States:
The following table shows the number of United States and foreign vessels plying regularly between ports of the United States and ports to the south:
|Mexico and Central America||27||43|
|South America on Caribbean Sea||4||25|
|South America on Atlantic||0||110|
|South America on Pacific||9||8|
A number of causes are held responsible for the decadence of American shipping since the war. No doubt the fact that the development of the great interior of the country was more attractive to capital had its effect. The American registration laws have since the first Congress prohibited the registration of foreign-built ships, and the tariff against steel, hemp, etc., prevented the American importation of shipbuilding material, both of which provisions have been accused of playing a part in the decadence of our shipping. It is now claimed that the material for construction can be obtained in America cheaper than the British builders can get it, but that there is a greater cost both in the construction of the ships and in the sailing of them, because labor is much more highly paid in the United States than it is abroad. The fact that foreign countries grant heavy subsidies to aid the maintenance of shipping, while the United States has not maintained such a policy, has made the competition an uneven one, and, since the recent development of public interest concerning the serious condition of our foreign shipping, the idea of establishing some form of subsidy by the United States as a solution of the shipping problem has won great popularity. American capital has meanwhile begun to participate largely in the foreign trade, through investments in ships which continue to sail under foreign flags. From 1894 to 1902 there was an increase from 200,000 tons to over 1,000,000 tons of foreign shipping in which American capital has held large interests. An American corporation has been established, which is the largest and most completely equipped steamship company, but only sixteen of its 136 steamers are entitled to the American flag. In the formation of this company—the International Mercantile Marine Company—the following companies were purchased:
|White Star Line||26||266,140|
|International Navigation Co.||24||180,639|
|Atlantic Transport Line||23||182,860|
Shipping, Coastwise and Interior. Since 1789 the American navigation laws have practically, and since 1817 absolutely, prohibited any but American vessels from participating in the coasting trade of the United States. Therefore the enormous domestic trade of the United States—the seacoast, lake, and river trade—has always been monopolized by American ship-owners and seamen. The facilities offered by the waterways of the United States greatly favor a large domestic shipping trade. There are 5200 miles of the United States frontier bordering on the oceans and the Gulf of Mexico, and an additional 2100 miles on lake and river. Furthermore, there is no other country in which rivers afford so great access to the interior as the United States. It is estimated that the United States has 18,000 miles of navigable riverway. On the Atlantic coast there are a large number of rivers, from the Saint Croix in Maine to the Saint John's in Florida, that are navigable from 50 to 200 miles inland; and there is no very considerable stretch of the coast that is not able to participate in the coastwise trade. The Gulf coast region is similarly favored with navigable rivers and with ports. The Mississippi River system gives water communication with the vast portion of the interior of the country. The Pacific coast is less favored with navigable rivers or with port sites, but the inlets at San Francisco, Portland, and Puget Sound have tributary navigable rivers, and are superior ports. (For river and harbor improvements, see Harbor.) No other nation has a domestic seaboard or lake trade comparable with the American, or a river trade that equals that of the United States. In 1898 the United States had 3,959,702 tons engaged in domestic seaboard trade; while the United Kingdom owned only 846,008 tons that were engaged in its own coastwise trade. In the accompanying table it will be seen that the development of the coasting trade has made good the loss sustained in the tonnage engaged in the foreign trade and in fisheries.
|YEARS||Foreign trade||Coasting trade||Whale and
In 1902, 2,347,977 tons of the sail vessels (including canal boats and barges) were of wood, and 273,051 tons of iron and steel. The steam vessels comprised 1,270,046 tons constructed of wood and 1,906,824 of iron and steel. The distribution of the shipping tonnage in 1901 is shown in the following table:
|DIVISIONS||Sailing vessels||Steam vessels||Canal boats||Barges||Total|
|Atlantic and Gulf||11,291||1,243,659||3,708||1,268,041||249||31,520||1,792||435,656||17,040||2,978,876|
There are no statistics showing the amount of cargo carried in the coastwise trade, as there are in the foreign trade, and its magnitude is not known. The most extensive coast trade centres in New York, largely with Boston on the one side, and Philadelphia on the other. San Francisco is the largest centre of the coastwise trade on the Pacific coast, but Seattle plays an important part in the coasting trade with Alaska. In 1900 products to the value of $5,052,051 were shipped from New York to San Francisco via the Isthmus of Panama, and products to the value of $1,765,729 were shipped from San Francisco to New York by the same route. The shipping facilities afforded by the Great Lakes are of inestimable value. See Great Lakes.
Shipping on the Mississippi System. Prior to the Civil War the Mississippi River system played a much more important part in the development of the interior of the country than did the Great Lakes. While the freight tonnage carried upon it is greater than ever before, the nature of the traffic has greatly changed, and the competition of the railroads has affected the river shipping much more than it has that of the lakes. The river was but little navigated for purposes of commerce prior to 1778. For many years the river was of importance to its tributary region chiefly as a means of marketing the surplus products of the newly settled region, since freight could not be profitably transported up stream. The methods used to transport the freight down stream were of the crudest kind. The most common carrier was the flatboat, rudely constructed from timber and without any other propelling force than the current of the river. After it had carried its load to the New Orleans market it was broken up for lumber or deserted. In 1812 the first steamboat was placed upon the river, and with the improvements that rapidly followed in steam navigation, the up-stream traffic also became large. In 1820 the upward movement of freight on the Mississippi amounted to about 100,000 tons, of which 33,300 tons were carried by steamers, and the remainder by barges, etc. In 1845, 2050 steamboats and 346 keel and flat boats arrived at Saint Louis, of which 250 were from New Orleans, 406 from the Ohio, including the Cumberland and Tennessee rivers, 298 from the Illinois River, 643 from the Mississippi above the Missouri, 249 from the Missouri River. and 204 from other ports. The arrivals at Saint Paul increased from 41 in 1844 to 846 in 1856. The years 1840 to 1859 constituted the palmy days of Mississippi navigation. Since then, over the greater part of the Mississippi Valley, the railroad has obtained most of the passenger traffic and most of the freight, except bulky products, chiefly coal and lumber. In 1900 the coal carried amounted to 8,539,224 tons, its movement being almost wholly upon the Ohio and its tributaries. The lumber and forest product carried in that year amounted to 9,300,641 tons, which were well distributed between the different tributaries and the main stream. In recent years the bulk of the traffic has been carried on barges towed by steamers.
Banking. See Bank, Banking.
Government—National. The outline of the national government is found in the Constitution framed in 1787 (see Constitution) and various acts of Congress passed in pursuance thereof. In structure and character it is a representative, federal, coördinated, elective, congressional government. Its representative character consists in the fact that the organization of the State is separate and distinct from that of the Government. It is federal in that it is part of a dual system under a common sovereignty. The distribution of the legislative, executive, and judicial powers of the central Government, among separate and distinct organs, contributes the feature of coördination. The popular choice of the executive and law-making branches makes the Government substantially elective, while the independence of the executive as over against the legislative makes the system congressional rather than ministerial in method of action. In distributing the powers of government the framers of the Constitution followed Colonial and English precedent, and confided to separate and distinct organs the exercise of those functions which were legislative in character, those which were executive, and those which were judicial. The investment of the President with the power to recommend to the legislative department the enactment of laws, the right of a qualified veto on its acts and resolutions, and the right of the lower branch of the legislature to impeach and the right of the upper branch to try all officers of the United States for certain offenses, are well-known exceptions to the general principle of the separation of powers. The same may be said of the power confided to the upper branch of the legislature to participate with the executive in the appointment of officers and the negotiation of treaties with foreign countries.
Congress. The origin of the national legislature is to be found in the so-called Second Continental Congress of 1775—a revolutionary body which was called to deliberate upon the state of public affairs growing out of the dispute with Great Britain, and which, with the acquiescence of the people, assumed plenary powers of government and the management of the war. Although its powers were undefined (there being no written constitution), the Congress exercised many of the usual functions of sovereign governments, among which may be mentioned the organization of a diplomatic service and the conclusion of treaties with foreign States; the regulation of commerce; the raising and equipment of armies; the establishment of a post-office; the creation of a national currency, etc. Delegates were usually appointed by popular conventions or legislatures, the Congress was organized in one chamber, and the States enjoyed equality of representation. The Articles of Confederation ratified in 1781 changed the basis of the Congress from a revolutionary assembly to a constitutional body, and undertook to define its powers and regulate its constitution. The principle of equality of representation and the unicameral form of organization were, however, continued; besides, its efficiency as a national legislature was impaired by other unwise provisions. It did not possess the power of taxation, nor did its commands operate upon individuals, but rather upon States which could not be coerced. A few years' experience showed that it was unequal to the task of a national legislature, and when the constitutional convention of 1787 came to deliberate upon the structure and powers of Congress it was practically unanimous in favor of the bicameral organization and of vesting Congress with more adequate powers. The troublesome question of representation was settled by an arrangement which protected the small States by giving them equality of representation in one chamber, and the large States by proportional representation in the other.
Congress was given adequate power over the source of the national revenue, besides other powers inherent in a national legislature. All its powers were enumerated by the Constitution, while a number of express prohibitions were inserted in behalf of individual liberty. Lest an express enumeration of its powers might operate to deprive it of discretion in choosing the appropriate means of carrying into execution the powers granted, a so-called ‘elastic clause’ was inserted empowering Congress to pass all laws deemed necessary and proper to carry out the powers expressed. Compared with the vast range of powers left with the States the few powers conferred upon Congress seem quite insignificant, and this disparity seems all the more noticeable when compared with the omnipotence of the British Parliament. But the apparently narrow powers vested in Congress have been rather broadly construed by the Supreme Court throughout the entire period of our national history. With the sanction of the court, sometimes under the stress of emergency, but more frequently in time of peace. Congress has steadily extended its powers in every direction, exercising functions which were probably never intended by the framers of the Constitution to be assumed by it. Thus under the simple power to lay and collect taxes (doubtless for revenue only) Congress has employed its power to destroy State bank currency, to encourage certain industries and destroy others, and to restrict commercial intercourse. In pursuance of the power to coin money and pay debts it has established national banks, issued bills of credit, and given the legal-tender quality to its treasury notes. Under the power to establish post offices and post roads it has made a Government monopoly of the entire postal service, established a money-order system, and provided for free delivery of mail in all cities and in many rural communities. Under the power to regulate foreign and interstate commerce it has regulated not only traffic, but telegraphic intercourse and navigation on inland rivers and canals. This power has been employed also for the purposes of prohibition, reciprocity, retaliation, and revenue. It has included the laying of embargoes, the enactment of non-intercourse and non-importation and quarantine laws, the dredging of harbors, the erection of lighthouses, beacons, buoys, etc. Likewise Congress, without express authority, has acquired foreign territory, erected it into States, and governed its inhabitants without their consent. It has made large grants of land to aid in the construction of railroads, passed laws to regulate and control Federal elections, governed rebellious States through military agency, conferred suffrage upon the negroes, and undertaken to secure for them equality of treatment in public places. During the controversy over Reconstruction it encroached seriously upon the sphere of the executive and the courts declined to interfere in the latter's behalf.
In reviewing the first century of the history of Congress and its place in our scheme of government, several criticisms are worthy of note. These are the invariable practice of choosing members from local districts, the short tenures of Representatives, the large and unwieldy size of the Lower House, the long interregnum between the time of the election and the organization of the Congress, the shortness of the second session, and the exclusion of the Cabinet from seats in either House.
State Government. The Constitution of the United States provides that all powers not delegated to the United States nor prohibited by it to the States are reserved to the States, respectively, or to the people. Those powers absolutely prohibited to the States are the conclusion of treaties, alliances, or confederations among themselves; the granting of letters of marque and reprisal; the coining of money; the issue of bills of credit; the making of anything but gold and silver a tender in payment of debts; the enactment of ex post facto laws, bills of attainder, or laws impairing the obligation of contracts; and granting of titles of nobility. Those prohibited except with the consent of Congress are the levying of duties on imports or exports, except such as may be absolutely necessary for executing inspection laws; the laying of tonnage duties; keeping troops or ships of war in time of peace; entering into agreements or compacts with other States or foreign powers, or engaging in war unless actually invaded or when the danger is such as not to admit of delay.
Upon examination it will be seen that the relation of the citizen to the State Government is far more close than with the National Government. Nearly the whole domain of civil and religious liberty, education, suffrage, domestic relations, marriage, business transactions, property, professions, trades, contract relations, administration of the criminal law, and many other social and business relationships come within the sphere of the State Government. The fundamental law of each State is embodied in a written constitution drawn up by a constituent convention and ratified in most cases by the electorate at the polls. The earlier constitutions were brief instruments containing little more than the law for the organization of the Government and the necessary safeguards for the protection of civil liberty, but the later ones are bulky documents containing a vast amount of matter which should properly appear in the statutes. In each of the States the legislative power is vested in the Legislature, consisting of a Senate and a House of Representatives, though in six States the latter chamber is styled ‘the Assembly’ and in three ‘the House of Delegates.’ Both Houses are chosen by popular vote and by the same electorate, although there are variations as to the mode of choice and tenure. Usually the districts from which Senators are chosen are larger than those from which Representatives are elected, and as a consequence the Lower House is a more numerous body. The Senates range in size from 17 members in Delaware to 51 in Illinois. Delaware has also the smallest House of Representatives, consisting of 35 members, while New Hampshire has the largest, with 390 members. The relative size of the two Houses in New York is 50 and 150 members, respectively, in Pennsylvania 50 and 201, in Massachusetts 40 and 240. The tenure of State Senators is usually longer than that of Representatives. In a majority of the States it is four years, the usual term of a Representative being two years. In many of the States provision is made for partial renewal of the Senate, usually by halves every second year. In a few States the qualifications for eligibility to the Senate are higher than those of the Lower House. The franchise for the election of the Legislature and of all elective State officers is regulated by the State constitutions and is universal manhood suffrage, except that in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and some of the Southern States educational tests are required, while in Wyoming, Utah, and Colorado women enjoy the suffrage equally with men. (For further details, see Suffrage and Representation.) In all the States members of the Legislature receive salaries, which are the same for members of both Houses. The amount ranges from one dollar a day and mileage at 8 cents a mile in Rhode Island to $1,500 a year and mileage at ten cents a mile in New York. In most of the States the Constitution provides for biennial sessions of the Legislature. In Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, and South Carolina annual sessions are required. In most of the States the length of the session is left to the discretion of the Legislature, in others it is limited by constitutional provision. The powers of the Legislature relative to organization, procedure, adjournment privileges, etc., are similar to those of Congress. The executive power in each State is vested in the Governor, popularly elected for a term ranging from one year in Rhode Island to four years in nineteen States. In a majority of the States—32 in number—there is a Lieutenant-Governor, who succeeds to the Governorship in case of a vacancy. The Governor's salary ranges from $1500 in Rhode Island and $2000 in New Hampshire to $10,000 in New York and Pennsylvania. In a few States he is ineligible to succeed himself. His duties and powers include the execution of the laws, the furnishing of the Legislature with information at the beginning of its session, the calling of it together in extraordinary session, the appointment of certain officers, usually with the consent of the Senate, the granting of reprieves and pardons, the veto of legislative measures except in four States (see Veto), and the command of the militia. In several of the States where there has been a traditional fear of the executive power, the Governor's prerogatives are very narrow—he has no veto power and but little power of appointment. To aid the Governor in the administration there are in every State a number of executive departments, at the head of which are officers usually chosen at the same time, in the same manner, and for the same term as himself. These are the Secretary of State, the Treasurer, the Attorney-General, the Auditor or Comptroller, and the Superintendent of Public Instruction, whose duties are sufficiently indicated by their titles. Besides, there are frequently such officers as commissioners of railroads and of canals, insurance, agriculture, labor, immigration, charities, etc. In most States where such officers exist they are popularly elected, but in a few States they are chosen by the Legislature or appointed by the Governor. The position of the heads of the State executive departments is in no sense similar to that of the President's Cabinet. The Governor has little or no power of direction over them and their responsibility is to their constituencies.
In each State the judicial power is vested in a Supreme Court or Court of Appeal, one or more superior courts known by different names, and a series of local courts of various kinds. In several States the Supreme Court is such only in name, there being a court of last resort above it and usually known as Court of Appeals or Court of Errors and Appeals. This is the case in New York, New Jersey, and Kentucky. Texas has two Supreme Courts, one for civil and the other for criminal cases. The size of the Supreme Courts ranges from three justices in eighteen States to nine in one State. The salaries of members of the State Supreme Courts range from $2000 in Delaware to $8000 in Pennsylvania. Next below the Supreme Court are the superior courts, sometimes called circuit courts, having jurisdiction over a group of counties with the power to hear appeals from the lower courts. Usually there is also a county court, which is known by different names and which has a wide original jurisdiction in both civil and criminal matters and appellate jurisdiction over the decisions of the justices of the peace. These justices of the peace have original jurisdiction in minor civil and criminal eases, with power to impose fines, to commit to prison for short periods, and to bind over accused persons to await the action of the grand jury. In the towns and cities there is usually a separate class of municipal courts. (See Municipal Government.) There are also probate and chancery courts in some States. Formerly the State judges were generally appointed by the Governor or chosen by the Legislature, but now in a great majority of the States they are popularly elected. In six States the Supreme Justices are still elected by the Legislature; in eight they are appointed by the Governor with the consent of the Council or Senate. The early rule was good-behavior tenure, but now that rule prevails only in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Delaware. Elsewhere the term varies from two years in Vermont to twenty-one in Pennsylvania.
Local Government. Three general types of local government prevail in the United States. They are the town system in New England, the county system in the South, and the mixed system in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and a number of the North Central States. In the town system the sovereign local authority is the town meeting, or general assembly of all the qualified voters of the town. A regular annual session of this assembly is held in the spring, and extra sessions are held throughout the year as necessity requires. At the annual meeting, which is presided over by a ‘moderator,’ the town officers are elected, the local budget passed, and other matters of local interest decided upon. The principal town officers are a number of selectmen ranging from three to nine, who are the general managers of the town affairs; the town clerk, who is the keeper of the records; the treasurer; the tax assessors; the tax collector; the school committee, and a variety of minor officers such as constables, overseers of the poor, surveyors, fence-viewers, etc. Where the pure town system prevails the county plays but little part in local administration, and in some States like Rhode Island there are, strictly speaking, no county officers, the county being merely a judicial district without corporate personality.
In the Southern States, where the county type of local government prevails, conditions are reversed. There the county is the political unit, and the administration of all local matters, except educational and municipal affairs, is intrusted to county officers. The chief county authority is the board of county commissioners or supervisors, each member of which represents one of the magisterial districts into which the county is divided. There is no authority which corresponds to the New England town meeting. Besides the commissioners, the chief county officers are the sheriff, the clerk, the commissioner of education, the coroner, the assessor, and sometimes a tax collector, although the collection of the taxes is a duty generally imposed upon the sheriff. The subdivisions of the county in some States are known as precincts, in others as townships; in Delaware, as hundreds; in Georgia, as militia districts; in Louisiana (where the counties are called parishes), as wards; in Maryland, as election districts; in Mississippi, as supervisor's districts, etc. In the Southern States they are mere judicial or election districts. In each is usually to be found one or more justices of the peace and their ministerial officers or constables, but the districts are in no sense political corporations.
The mixed system which originated in New York and Pennsylvania is a compromise between the two types described above. Here both the town and county elements exist, but are combined in different ratios. In New York the chief local authority is the board of supervisors, consisting of a representative chosen from each town in the county. In Pennsylvania it is a board of three commissioners elected from the county at large. The New York supervisor presides over the town administration, while the Pennsylvania commissioner is in no sense a township officer. In the mixed type, the town or township is a body corporate and politic. Each has its clerk, assessor, collector, commissioner of highways, justices of the peace, constable, etc. In New York there is an annual town meeting at which local officers are elected and matters of poor relief, taxes, schools, etc., attended to. In the pure Pennsylvania form the town meeting does not exist, town affairs being managed by a corps of officers elected by the people of the town. The New York, or supervisor type of local government, has been adopted in Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Nebraska, New Jersey, and elsewhere. The Pennsylvania, or commissioner system, has been transplanted to Ohio, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, and Missouri, and in a modified form to Minnesota and the Dakotas. For local government in the towns and cities, see Municipal Government.
Finances. The finances of the United States are characterized by rapid increase in magnitude of fiscal operations, and by the great facility with which revenues are secured, resulting in a general tendency for revenue to outstrip expenditures. While the Federal Government possesses the constitutional right to levy both direct and indirect taxes, the requirement that the former shall be apportioned among the States in proportion to population, and the popular hostility to direct taxation, have in effect practically confined the Federal Government to the field of indirect taxation. The principal sources of revenue are customs duties, which yielded in 1902, $254,444,708, and internal revenue (excise taxes) yielding $271,880,122. The principal sources of the internal revenue were: Spirits, $121,138,013; fermented liquors, $71,988,902; tobacco, $51,937,925. Receipts from the postal service amounting (1902) to $121,848,047 figure in the total revenues, which for 1902 were $684,326,280.
The most important items of expenditure are pensions, the post office, the army, the navy, and interest on the public debt. In 1902 the sum paid out in pensions was $138,488,560; the cost of the postal service was $125,896,531; the total of expenditures made by the War Department was $114,657,246; of the Navy Department $68,302,025. It must be remembered that part of the expenses of the War Department should not logically fall under that head, as, for example, expenses for improvement of rivers and harbors. The total of expenditures for 1902 was $593,038,903.
The interest-bearing debt of the United States was $931,070,340 on July 1, 1902, The debt which bears no interest, including United States notes, ($346,681,000) and certificates against gold and silver deposited in the treasury, etc., amounted to $1,226,259,245. Only a relatively small part of the non-interest bearing debt is to be regarded as net debt, since far the greater part is covered by cash in the treasury.
Budget. See the article Budget.
History. Down to the adoption of the Federal Constitution the finances of the Central Government were in an extremely chaotic condition. In 1775 the Continental Congress undertook to establish a Continental army and navy, but no power had been delegated to Congress to raise revenue by taxation to meet the attendant expenditures. Congress was therefore forced to rely upon the issue of bills of credit, the proceeds of loans, foreign and domestic, and requisitions upon the various States, which the latter could honor or not as they saw fit. From 1775 to 1783 it is estimated that the income of the Continental Treasury, estimated in specie, amounted to $65,863,825, of which about $37,800,000 was secured through the issue of bills of credit, $19,416,000 through loans, and $5,795,000 through requisitions upon the States. National credit sank so low that in 1781 the Continental bills of credit had fallen to one per cent. of their face value. It was practically impossible, during the greater part of the Revolutionary period, for Congress to borrow money at home or abroad; the foreign loans from France and Spain were rather in the nature of subsidies than of real loans.
Under the Articles of Confederation, the financial position of the Central Government was but little stronger. It was provided that the expenses of the National Government should be defrayed by taxes apportioned to the States in proportion to the value of land and improvements. Congress had power to emit bills of credit and to contract loans; but since the States levied the apportioned taxes according to their own discretion, there was no certainty that such loans could be repaid when due. By 1786 the credit of the Government had fallen so low that it was practically impossible to secure loans, while the proceeds of the apportioned taxes did not meet the running expenses of government. Efforts to amend the articles so as to make possible a national tax proved unavailing, owing to the provision that unanimous consent of the States should be necessary for amendment.
From this state of affairs the country was rescued by the adoption of the Federal Constitution, which gave Congress wide powers of taxation. By the act of July 4, 1789, import duties were levied; in the following year the national debt was reorganized and augmented by the assumption of the State debts incurred in the War for Independence. In 1791 the first national bank was organized to aid in placing the governmental finances on a sound footing. (See Bank, Banking.) As the tariff of 1789 did not furnish revenue enough to meet current expenses, including the interest on the public debt, Congress in 1791 laid an excise tax upon spirits, which was further extended in 1794 to cover a considerable number of articles. In 1798 a direct tax was levied upon lands, dwelling houses, and slaves. Both the excise and the direct taxes were unpopular and unproductive, yielding in all only $1,582,000 in 1801. The customs duties, on the other hand, increased from $4,399,000 in 1791 to $10,751,000 in 1801.
From 1801 to 1811 revenue largely exceeded expenditures, in spite of the repeal of the excise taxes in 1802. The national debt was reduced from $83,000,000 to $45,200,000. With the outbreak of the War of 1812, customs duties fell off with the ruin of commerce, while military expenditures made a heavy drain upon the national resources. Excise duties were repugnant to the principles of the Republican Party, then in power; accordingly it was necessary to finance the war chiefly by means of loans and the issue of treasury notes. Up to the end of 1814 $41,010,000 was borrowed; by February, 1815, $36,680,000 in treasury notes had been issued, of which, however, part was issued to pay off earlier issues, the largest amount outstanding being $17,619,000 in 1816. In 1813 a direct tax of $3,000,000 was levied, and in 1814 excise taxes were again imposed. These taxes were repealed in 1817 with the increase in customs revenue attendant upon the renewal of foreign commercial relations. From 1816 to 1835 revenue exceeded expenditures so far as practically to extinguish the national debt in the latter year. In 1836 and 1837 a surplus accumulated, which was distributed to the States in the guise of a loan in 1837, about $28,000,000 being disposed of in this way. An important item in the revenues of 1834-37 was the proceeds from the sale of public lands. From 1810 to 1830 the sales of public lands had yielded an annual income ranging from one to two millions; in 1834 the yield was about $15,000,000; 1835, $14,767,000; 1836, $24,877,000; 1837, $6,776,000.
The following table gives the receipts and expenditures for typical years from the adoption of the Constitution down to the Civil War:
The years 1837-43 showed a series of deficits owing to decline in revenue through commercial depression, and increase in expenditures due chiefly to greater expense in managing Indian affairs and the undertaking of internal improvements. It became necessary to resort again to the issue of treasury notes and the sale of bonds. An increase in tariff rates in 1842 restored the balance and created a surplus, which was turned into a deficit by the expenses of the Mexican War. Between 1846 and 1851 the national debt increased from $15,550.00 to $68,304,000. By 1857 the debt had been reduced to $28,700,000. A new series of deficits began with 1858, which increased the indebtedness about $50,000,000 by 1860, when the Morrill tariff act restoring higher duties supplied revenue in excess of expenditures.
Money. By an act of March 4, 1900, the gold dollar weighing 25.8 grains was made the standard of value of the monetary system. The gold coins in common use, however, are the five, ten, and twenty dollar pieces. Silver dollars, half dollars, etc., are also coined and accepted as convenient mediums of exchange. Silver and gold certificates are issued by the Government, for the repayment of which a fund of $150,000,000 in gold has been established. For further particulars, see articles on Money, Coinage, etc.
Weights and Measures. The United States system of weights and measures is fully discussed in the general article on Weights and Measures.
Army. The first step toward the establishment of a military force under the control of the Continental Congress was taken June 15, 1775, when that body resolved that a general be appointed to command all the Continental forces raised or to be raised for the defense of American liberty, and unanimously elected George Washington. One year later (June 13, 1776) the Continental Congress created a ‘Board of War,’ the germ of the modern War Department. The Revolution was a great war school for the crude but patriotic bands that rallied under Washington's standard, and the Regular Army of to-day rests upon the foundation then laid, after European methods. Thus the United States articles of war are copied from the British military code; the principles of discipline, drill, and accountability for property survive as they were prescribed by the aide-de-camp of Frederick the Great—Baron Steuben; while the French volunteer Baron du Portail became the first Chief of Engineers.
In September, 1776, the Continental Congress appointed a committee to confer with the general officers of the army with the view of creating a system of instruction which would furnish officers educated in the theory of military art and science. This was the origin of the Military Academy at West Point, which institution, however, was not formally established until 1802.
Notwithstanding Washington's wise counsel, that provision should be made for a permanent and well-equipped army, the close of the Revolution saw the seasoned veterans return to their farms and other civil avocations, and Congress, swayed by the arguments that “Standing armies in time of peace are inconsistent with the principles of republican government and dangerous to the liberties of a free people,” that “the United States being remote from nations having peace establishments and by being always in a state of defense, on the plan of the confederation, which provides that every State shall always keep up a well regulated and disciplined militia,” directed the discharge of “the troops now (May 26, 1784) in the service of the United States, except twenty-five privates to guard the stores at Fort Pitt and fifty-five to guard the stores at West Point and other magazines with a proportionable number of officers,” no officer to remain in service above the rank of captain.
War with a civilized power was no sooner ended than the need of provision against Indian hostilities became apparent; the Articles of Confederation framed for protection against the greater danger were found ineffective in dealing with the lesser evil. The recommendations of Congress fell upon deaf ears: each State was busy with its own immediate affairs, and the Continental legislature was compelled (June 3, 1784) to augment its nucleus of 80 enlisted men by the enrollment and equipment of a small regiment of foot soldiers; later (October 20, 1786), a battalion of artillery was added, and so by degrees the nucleus of a national force was formed which in 1788 amounted to 595 men, commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel and Brevet Brigadier-General Josiah Harmar.
The establishment of a permanent land force for the national defense, otherwise known as the ‘Regular Army,’ legally dates from March, 1789, a few weeks before the inauguration of Washington as President under the Federal Constitution. The troops then in service already mentioned, now became the ‘Regiment of Infantry’ and ‘Battalion of Artillery,’ and eventually (1791) became known as the First Regiment of Infantry (Lieutenant-Colonel Harmar) and the Battalion of Artillery (Major Doughty), respectively.
Generals Commanding the Army of the United States
from the Founding of the Republic
|Arthur St. Clair||1791||1796|
|George B. McClellan||1861||1862|
|Henry W. Halleck||1862||1864|
|Ulysses S Grant||1864||1869|
|William T. Sherman||1869||1883|
|Philip H. Sheridan||1883||1888|
|John M. Schofield||1888||1895|
|Nelson A. Miles||1895||1903|
|S. B. M. Young||1903||1903|
For more than one hundred years after that date, the army served as the strong right arm of the Government: now engaged in holding back the Indians from border settlements; exploring unknown wilds and planting the flag for the honor and glory of the young nation; protecting the hardy settler and the advance guard of science; standing between the peace-loving citizen and the murderous mob; and in five wars forming the back-bone of the great forces called out to meet the emergencies. Withal, the Regular Army performed these varied duties quietly but effectually. It produced Grant, Lee, Sherman, Sheridan, Thomas, Jackson, and a host of able commanders of less renown, but yet distinguished on the roll of fame. The conspicuous traits of the American regular are his individuality, fertility of resource, and unswerving loyalty to his Government; the officers especially exhibiting, since the Spanish-American War, an unexampled capacity for the administration of civil affairs, assuming at a moment's notice duties ranging in importance from those of Governor-General and Judge of the Supreme Court to collector of customs and chief of police, and discharging them with marked ability and fidelity.
The Staff. Next to the training and equipment of the line and the selection of competent leaders, the question of a general staff early received the attention of the Board of War. The value of the services of the foreign officers who as volunteers organized, drilled, and inspected the army and aided materially in achieving the success of the American operations had deeply impressed Washington, who upon the eve (1798) of his resuming the command of the army thus addressed the Secretary of War: “In forming an army, if a judicious choice is not made of the principal officers, and above all, of the general staff, it can never be rectified thereafter. The character then of the army would be lost in the superstructure. The reputation of the commander-in-chief would sink with it and the country be involved in inextricable expense.”
The first general staff officers appointed by Washington upon assuming command at Cambridge (1775) were an adjutant-general (Horatio Gates), a quartermaster-general (Thomas Mifflin), and a commissary-general (Joseph Trumbull). Under them from time to time during the war were temporarily appointed officers of the line as assistants. As far back as 1777, the Continental Congress had “Resolved, * * that it is essential to the promotion of discipline in the American army and to the reformation of the various abuses which prevail in the various departments that an appointment be made of inspectors general, agreeable to the practice of the best disciplined European armies.” The first practical result of this action was shown in the selection of Baron Steuben, who may justly be considered the originator of much that is admirable in the staff system of the United States army. Although he had held the rank of lieutenant-general in the Prussian Army, he did not hesitate to serve at first as a volunteer, pending his appointment as inspector-general with rank of major-general (May 5, 1778).
At the close of the war Baron Steuben resigned his commission, receiving the thanks of Congress “for the great zeal and abilities he has discovered in the discharge of the several duties of his office,” together with the gift of a ‘gold-hilted sword.’ Toward the close of his life Steuben prepared a manual of “Regulations for the order and discipline of the troops of the United States,” and for governing the militia (Portsmouth, N. H., 1794), still a model of its kind.
Although, from time to time during the American Revolution, suitable persons were appointed to perform staff duties, yet the existing staff departments date their permanent establishment as follows: Adjutant-general's, March 3, 1813; inspector-general's, March 3, 1813: judge advocate-general's (Bureau of Military Justice, 1864), July 5, 1884; quartermaster's, March 28, 1812; subsistence, April 14, 1818; medical, April 14, 1818; pay, April 24, 1816; engineers, March 11, 1779 (present ‘corps of’), March 3, 1863; ordnance, May 14, 1812; signal (corps), March 3, 1863. The Journal of the Continental Congress, Washington's orders, and the Revised Statutes teem with interesting historical and biographical data relating to these staff departments for which space here is denied. Out of the crude measures of a great crisis has grown a governmental system which, if not perfect, has through its personnel accomplished wonders. The names of Steuben, Trumbull, Rush, Morgan, Bernard, Townsend, Meigs, Ingalls, Myer, Fry, and Weston are those of a few of the men who, in spite of imperfections of organization, of official dry-rot, and a false sense of security from perils that at times threaten the most favored nations, were equal to the emergency of war, and achieved great distinction in their several departments.
Statistics of the United States Army, 1789-1902
|Strength of Army|
|1789||1 reg't infantry, 1 bat. artillery||840|
|1792||Indian border wars||5,120|
|1812||War with Great Britain||11,831|
Important Campaigns and Expeditions
in which the Army has taken part.
|1790-95||War with Northwestern Indians.|
|1794||Whisky Insurrection (Pa.).|
|1806||Sabine expedition (La.).|
|1811-13||War with Western Indians.|
|1812||Seminole disturbances (Fla.).|
|1812-15||War with Great Britain.|
|1813-14||Creek Indian war (Ala.).|
|1817-18||Seminole War (Fla.).|
|1823||Blackfeet Indian campaign.|
|1827||Winnebago Indian expedition.|
|1832||Black Hawk War.|
|1835-42||Seminole War (Fla.).|
|1836-37||Creek Indian disturbances (Ala.).|
|1838-39||New York frontier disturbances.|
|1848||Cayuse Indian war (Ore.).|
|1849-61||Navajo Indian troubles (N. M.).|
|1849-61||Indian disturbances (Tex.).|
|1850||Pitt River expedition (Cal.).|
|1851-52||Yuma expedition (Cal.).|
|1851-56||Snake, Sioux, Yakima, Cheyenne, and Arapahoe|
|1855-57||Seminole War (Fla.).|
|1857||Gila expedition (N. M.).|
|1858||Puget Sound and other Indian troubles.|
|1858-59||Wichita (Ind. Ter.), Colorado River (Cal.), Pecos|
|and Antelope Hills (Tex.), and Bear River|
|1859-60||Cortina troubles on Texas-Mexican border.|
|1860||Kiowa-Comanche (Ind. Ter.) and Carson Valley|
|1860-61||Navajo expedition (N. M.).|
|1861-86||Apache Indian war (.riz. and N. M.).|
|1862-67||Sioux War (Minn. and Dak.).|
|1863-69||Indian war (Kan., Neb., Colo., and Ind. Ter.).|
|1865-68||War with Northwestern Indians.|
|1865-66||Fenian raid (N. Y. and Canada).|
|1867-81||Campaigns against Indians and Mexican border|
|1868-69||Canadian River expedition (N. M.).|
|1874-75||Indian campaign (Ind. Ter.), Sioux (Wyo. and|
|Neb.), Black Hills (Dak.), and Big Horn (Wyo.)|
|1875||Expedition against Indians (Nev.).|
|1876||Powder River expedition (Wyo. Ter.).|
|1876-77||Big Horn and Yellowstone expeditions (Wyo. and|
|1876-79||War with Northern Indians.|
|1877||Labor strikes (Pa. and Md.).|
|1877||Nez Perces campaign.|
|1878||Bannock and Piute campaigns (Nev. and Ida.), and|
|Ute Indian expedition (Colo.).|
|1879-84||Disturbances in Ind. and Okla. Ter., and Ute|
|Indian campaign (Colo. and Utah).|
|1885||Chinese mining and labor troubles (Wyo. Ter.)|
|1890-91||Sioux Indian troubles (So. Dak.).|
|1891-93||Garcia troubles (Texas-Mexican border).|
|1892||Miners' disturbances (Idaho).|
|1894||Labor disturbances (Ill.), and labor strikes (Ill. to|
|1898||War with Spain.|
|1900||China relief expedition.|
Modern Establishment. The war with Spain (1898) called public attention to some of the imperfections of the American military administration, and discussion of the shortcomings brought about a plan of reorganization unprecedented in the history of the Army. The Philippine insurrection, requiring the occupation of the archipelago at one time by a force of 65,000 men (regulars and volunteers), became in its turn an object lesson in the formation of a permanent military establishment suited to the new conditions. The regular force of 1897, expanded by Congress the following year to 63,000, was in 1899 reinforced by 35,000 volunteers, exceptionally efficient, as nearly all had seen service in Cuba and the Philippines, and were organized into regiments commanded by selected regular officers. During two years following these troops were incessantly engaged in fighting the Filipinos under the unfavorable conditions of climate, terrain, and the treacherous character of the enemy.
Official figures of the Adjutant-General's office show that from February 4, 1899, to April 30, 1902, there were 2,561 engagements, and in no case did United States troops surrender or retreat leaving their dead and wounded in the possession of the enemy. Up to July 16, 1902, 4,135 officers and 123,803 men were landed in the Philippines, 1,135 officers and 23,000 men having been sent there more than once. The average strength during the period named was 40,000. The casualties were: Killed and died of wounds, 69 officers and 936 enlisted men; deaths from disease, 47 officers and 2,535 men; deaths from accident, 6 officers and 125 men; drowned, 6 officers and 257 enlisted men; deaths by suicide, 10 officers and 72 enlisted men; murdered, 1 officer and 91 enlisted men. Total deaths, 139 officers and 4,016 enlisted men; wounded, 190 officers and 2,707 enlisted men, a total of 2,897.
Besides the service in the Philippines, the regular contingent there was drawn upon for the China Relief Expedition to the extent of 2,000 men. During the short campaign—July-August, 1900—the American casualties numbered 32 killed and 77 wounded. For the first time since the Revolution the United States Army fought side by side with European troops, and the professional benefit derived from the association was well worth the cost. In certain respects the practical excellence of the American troops was conceded.
On February 2, 1901, Congress authorized a permanent increase of the Army (discretionary with the President except artillery) not to exceed 100,000 men, including 12,000 native troops for service in Porto Rico and the Philippines. This force consisted of 15 regiments of cavalry, 30 of infantry, one of engineers, a corps of artillery, and the staff departments. In June of that year all volunteers were mustered out. In July, 1902, the President, in the exercise of the discretion vested in him by law, the United States having recognized the independence of Cuba and having placed the greater part of the Philippine Islands under civil government, materially reduced the army to the aggregate strength shown in the following table:
Organization of the United States Army, July, 1902
|Judge adv.-general's department||...||...||1||11||.........||.........||.........||.........||12||.........||12|
|Corps of Engineers||...||...||1||159||8||288||28||992||160||1,316||1,476|
|Record and Pension Office||...||...||1||1||.........||.........||.........||.........||2||.........||2|
|15 regiments cavalry||...||...||...||750||120||2,880||420||10,620||750||14,040||14,790|
|126 companies coast artillery||...||...||...||531||48||2,772||280||10,962||531||14,062||14,593|
|30 batteries field artillery||...||...||...||120||.........||630||.........||3,050||120||3,680||3,800|
|30 regiments infantry||...||...||...||1,500||240||6,480||840||22,320||1,500||29,880||31,380|
|Enlisted men unattached to Reg's, etc.||...||...||...||.........||.........||.........||.........||.........||.........||800||800|
|Porto Rico provisional reg. of infantry||...||...||...||31||6||184||.........||648||31||866||897|
The most radical change in the organization was that of the artillery. For many years, nominally it was regimental, but practically the unit for administration and operation was the battery. The system of coast defense lacked cohesion, consisting simply of a number of independent posts commanded by officers, who, having reached the rank of field officer after thirty or forty years' service, as light battery commanders in the Civil War, or with infantry garrisons in peace, were content to rest on their laurels. Under the influence of Secretary of War Root, the seven regiments of artillery (after a long struggle, professional and political) were merged into a corps, supervised by a chief (selected from the fourteen colonels), with his station at the headquarters of the Army, and consisting of 126 companies of coast artillery and 30 batteries of field artillery. These were grouped within a number of artillery districts, and each district placed under command of a competent field officer.
Relative Strength of Army to Population
|1790||57||1216||1273||3⁄100 of 1|
|1800||318||4118||4436||8⁄100 of 1|
|1810||774||9147||9921||14⁄100 of 1|
|1820||712||8230||8942||9⁄100 of 1|
|1830||627||5324||5951||5⁄100 of 1|
|1840||733||9837||10570||6⁄100 of 1|
|1850||948||9815||10763||5⁄100 of 1|
|1860||1108||12259||13367||5⁄100 of 1|
|1870||2541||34534||37075||10⁄100 of 1|
|1880||2152||24357||26509||5⁄100 of 1|
|1890||2168||24921||27089||4⁄100 of 1|
|1900||2500||65000||67600||9⁄100 of 1|
At the same time, a plan of instruction for young officers was devised—an elaboration of the post-graduate schools existing at the opening of the war with Spain—and the following institutions were created: A War College at Washington, a General Service and Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, a Cavalry and Light Artillery School at Fort Riley, an Engineer School at Washington Barracks, and a School of Submarine Defense at Fort Totten, N. Y. A large appropriation was made in 1902 for permanent camp grounds and the erection of additional barracks and quarters at certain military posts, at which large garrisons may be concentrated. See Armies; Army Organization; and other military topics where matters pertaining to the United States Army are discussed. For militia, see section under the various States.
Navy. The first definite provision for a naval establishment was the act of Congress of October 13, 1775, which authorized the building of one vessel of 10 guns and another of 14 guns to be equipped as national cruisers. At the same time a law was passed establishing a marine committee consisting of John Adams (later replaced by Christopher Gadsden), John Langdon, and Silas Deane. This Congressional committee was later enlarged to thirteen and given charge of all matters pertaining to the navy.
On October 30th two more vessels were authorized, one of 20 and the other of 36 guns; while on December 13th the construction of thirteen ships was provided for. On November 10th an act for the ‘public defense’ authorized the raising of two battalions of marines and established rules for the “government of the American Navy.” The marines authorized were in reality sailors, for the act provided “that particular care be taken that no persons be appointed to offices, or enlisted into said battalions, but such as are good seamen, or so acquainted with maritime affairs as to be able to serve to advantage by sea when required.” It is probable, therefore, that Congress designed by the act to provide crews for such vessels as they were able to equip and to enlist and keep the men together until their services could be made available.
As the vessels authorized to be built could not be completed for some time, a number of merchantmen were purchased and armed. These improvised men-of-war, hastily and poorly equipped and armed, and in many cases very badly officered and manned, constituted the first American naval force, of which, by act of Congress of December 22, 1775, Esek Hopkins was made commander-in-chief.
The vessels of the improvised navy were directed to cruise along the coast and intercept transports laden with munitions of war for the British army and navy. On February 17, 1776, a squadron under Commander-in-Chief Hopkins consisting of the Alfred, Columbus, Cabot, Andrea Doria, Providence, Wasp, Fly, and Hornet put to sea bound for the West Indies. The Fly and Hornet parted company with the fleet on the night of the 18th, but the remainder kept together, and in March captured the British naval station on the island of New Providence, Bahamas, obtaining a quantity of military and naval stores, including nearly 100 cannon, which were much needed for arming the new ships. The squadron left on March 17th, having on board the royal Governor and some other prisoners. When off Long Island, Hopkins captured a British bomb-brig of 8 guns and a tender of 6 guns and had a running fight with H. B. M. S. Glasgow of 20 tons, which made a very good defense and eventually, by good management, escaped. In October, 1776, Congress passed a vote of censure upon Commodore Hopkins for not performing the duties upon which he was sent. He was dropped from the service on January 2, 1777, and no other officer has since been given the title of commander-in-chief of the Navy.
On March 23, 1776, letters of marque and reprisal were granted against Great Britain, and numerous privateers were fitted out. On June 25th a marine corps (q.v.) was established consisting of one major, nine captains, ten first lieutenants, and seven second lieutenants.
After the Declaration of Independence Congress began the building up of the navy with increased vigor, and on October 3d it ordered another frigate and two cutters, and on November 9th an act was passed authorizing the construction of three 74-gun ships, five more frigates, a sloop-of-war, and a packet; and these were to be supplemented by another frigate and another sloop-of-war ordered in January, 1777. But the plans of Congress were quite beyond the capacity of the Colonies either to build, equip, or man. One 74 was laid down at Portsmouth, N. H., and completed in 1781—too late to be of service. Her armament was reduced to 56 guns, and during the next year she was presented to the King of France to replace the 74-gun ship Magnifique, which was lost in Boston Harbor. Many of the vessels built never got to sea, and the real work performed by the navy during the Revolution was done by a dozen vessels, most of which were small.
On November 15, 1776, Congress established the relative rank between officers of the army and navy as follows: Admirals to rank with generals, vice-admirals with lieutenant-generals, rear-admirals with major-generals, commodores with brigadier-generals, captains of ships of 40 guns and upward with colonels, captains of ships of 20 to 40 guns with lieutenant-colonels, captains of ships of 10 to 20 guns with majors, lieutenants with captains, and officers of marines with officers holding similar commissions in the land service. Notwithstanding this act, no rank higher than that of captain was created by law until 1862, though the title of admiral (q.v.) was given to John Paul Jones in the official correspondence of the State Department in 1792, a short time previous to his death.
From the close of the Revolution until 1795 the country was practically without a navy, largely from lack of money to support one. The cause of its reëstablishment was the depredations of the Barbary pirates. On March 3, 1794, President Washington sent a message to Congress communicating the facts in regard to the Algerian outrages, and Congress promptly passed an act, which was approved on March 27th, authorizing the purchase or construction of six frigates. It was provided that no vessel should mount less than 32 guns. An additional provision was that all proceedings under the act should cease in case the Algerian difficulty should be settled. Measures were immediately taken for the construction of the vessels, which consisted of the Constitution (q.v.), President, and United States of 44 guns, and the Chesapeake (q.v.), Constellation, and Congress of 38.
In November, 1795, a treaty was signed with the Dey of Algiers, and all work on the vessels was suspended. The President immediately called the attention of Congress to the subject, and an act was passed without delay ordering the completion and equipment of two of the 44's and one of the 38's. The treaty of peace with the Dey of Algiers cost nearly a million dollars, the price of three frigates, and the President, in his annual address to Congress in December, 1790, strongly recommended laws for the gradual increase of the navy. The outrageous proceedings of the French cruisers on the United States coast did what no representations of the Government could achieve, and in April, 1798, Congress grudgingly authorized the President to build, purchase, or hire twelve vessels, none of which was to exceed 22 guns, and see that they were regularly manned and equipped. This act was passed on April 27th, and on the 30th a regular Navy Department was created separate from the Department of War, of which it had previously formed a part. Benjamin Stoddert of Georgetown, D. C., was the first Secretary, and he entered on his duties in June. On June 11th a new marine corps was established, and during the year a number of additional small vessels were authorized.
The quasi-war with France soon terminated with credit to the newly born service; nevertheless, it is probable that Congress was so deeply imbued with false ideas of economy that the navy would have been reduced to comparative uselessness had not the Barbary powers repeated their acts of aggression. At the close of the operations against Tripoli, which were highly creditable to the navy, the service was in excellent condition. The spirit of economy shown by our Government now took a new turn. President Jefferson, whose knowledge of military affairs was very slight and of naval affairs practically nil, brought forth his gunboat policy. While this system was being developed the incident of the Chesapeake and Leopard occurred and saved the navy from absolute disorganization, though that incident itself was discreditable to the country and the naval service. Neither the aggressions of England and France nor the danger of war with Spain were sufficient, however, to cause Congress to appropriate money for ships of the line, and the navy at the beginning of the War of 1812 was possessed of nothing larger than a frigate, while the price of several line-of-battle ships had been squandered in building more than 200 worthless gunboats. The operations of the War of 1812 were so extensive and important that they cannot here even be separately mentioned. Suffice it to say that the navy achieved world-wide renown and won the respect of the country.
Immediately after the close of the war with Great Britain a squadron under the command of Commodore Decatur was sent to punish the Barbary powers, particularly Algiers, for wanton aggressions upon our commerce during the war, which prevented action being taken at the time. In sixty days after his arrival in the Mediterranean Decatur had captured the principal vessels of the Algerian navy and had forced treaties on Algiers and Tunis which compelled these faithless pirates to a recognition of maritime right.
In considering the operations of the War of 1812 it is interesting to speculate upon what might have occurred had the war lasted another year. In 1813 Robert Fulton submitted to President Madison plans for a sea-going steam battery. His plans were accepted, and in March, 1814, Congress authorized the building of one or more of such batteries for the defense of the coast. Fulton died in February, 1815, but the Demologos (Voice of the People) was completed in the following spring and had successful trials in June. On July 4, 1815, she made a trip to sea and back, steaming 53 miles in eight hours and twenty minutes. Her length was 156 feet, beam 56 feet, depth 20 feet, and she measured 2475 tons, or more than a line-of-battle ship and 1000 tons more than the Constitution, although her cost, $320,000, was only $17,000 more than the first cost of the latter. Her sides were 5 feet thick and impenetrable to any guns carried by British ships, while her battery consisted of 20 guns, which were heavier than any then afloat. A furnace was fitted for heating shot, and there were pumps for throwing cold or hot water on the enemy's deck. The propelling apparatus of the Demologos consisted of a single paddle-wheel in the centre of the ship, operating in a channel extending the length of the ship below the gun deck and dividing the under-water body into two parts, which were held together by the upper works and transverse frames at the bottom. Had this vessel got to sea before the conclusion of hostilities and met the warships of the enemy it is tolerably certain that she would have destroyed the heaviest squadrons with ease and caused a revolution in naval affairs. As it was, however, her powers remained unproved and the natural conservatism of the naval authorities, accustomed to the use of sails, caused her to be looked upon as an interesting experiment of no great practical value. She was, therefore, tied up alongside the wharf at the Brooklyn Navy Yard and used as a receiving ship. On June 4, 1820, her magazine blew up, killing 24 persons and injuring 19.
The successful performance of the Demologos (or Fulton, as she was afterwards called in honor of her designer) led Congress in 1816 to authorize the construction of another steam battery. But the conservative officers at the head of affairs in the navy could not understand the importance of steam-propelled ships, and it was not until 1835 that measures were taken to carry out the provisions of the law. In the meantime a number of ships of the line were built, about a dozen in all, and some of them took part later in the Mexican Yar. In 1835 the Secretary of the Navy, acting upon better advice, directed the Board of Commissioners to proceed at once to the construction of a steam man-of-war. In 1837 the vessel was completed and tried, a speed of 12 knots being realized. Her propelling power consisted of side paddle-wheels and engines on the upper deck. Several other paddle-wheel vessels were built in the next few years, one of which was the iron steamer Michigan, which is still in service on the Great Lakes—the first iron vessel in the navy, and also the first one afloat on the Lakes. In 1842-43 the screw steamer Princeton (of about 1000 tons) was built and fitted with machinery designed by John Ericsson. She was the first war vessel in any navy to be fitted with screw propulsion, and likewise the first to have all her machinery and boilers below the water-line and to have blowing fans for forcing the draught under the boilers. A Congressional committee, after considering the advantages of the submerged propeller and iron hulls, recommended in 1846 that thirteen screw steamers of iron be immediately constructed. When authority for the construction of four war steamers was granted in the following year, a board of prominent naval officers recommended that three of the four should have paddle-wheels. The fourth was the San Jacinto; and it as well as the others was built of wood. In 1854 Congress ordered the building of “six first-class steam frigates to be provided with screw propellers.” These vessels were the celebrated ships of the Merrimac, Niagara, and Wabash class. They were of fine model for their day, and should have had good speed, but instead of having full steam and auxiliary sail power they had full sail power and only auxiliary engines. They were followed, however, in 1857 by the steam frigates of the Hartford class, in which the engine power was relatively considerably increased.
The operations of the navy in the Civil War soon showed the true importance of steam and the uselessness, or worse than uselessness, of sails. Even after the close of the war the practice of giving full sail power to our cruising men-of-war was continued from mistaken ideas of economy; though during the war the rigged ships had been very generally stripped of yards and upper masts. The practice died hard, and it was not until 1887 that a full sail rig was abandoned for cruising vessels. The ill-fated Maine was the last ship for general service to be designed to carry a heavy square rig, but this was changed to military masts before her completion.
The importance of possessing armored vessels was realized as soon as the Civil War commenced, and on both sides an investigation of the subject of armored ships was begun at once. The Confederates started work first, but the superior resources of the North enabled the first really armored ships to be completed on practically the same day. Both Monitor and Merrimac (Virginia) were fatally defective in details, but many of the defects were corrected in later vessels of the same types. See Ship, Armored.
After the close of the Civil War the navy again sank into decadence, the enormous expenses entailed by the war causing Congress to cut down appropriations in every direction. The personnel of the regular service was increased just after the end of the struggle, but it was cut down later, the last cut being in 1882, just as new construction was about to commence. During the interval 1866-82 only a few vessels were authorized—five monitors of 4000 to 6000 tons and about a dozen wooden cruisers, only one of which (the Trenton) was over 2000 tons. Old vessels were repaired and kept going, but nothing new was attempted, the wooden cruisers mentioned being out of date when put in service. So that, in 1880, the United States Navy, with its antiquated ships and no less antiquated ordnance, was the laughing-stock of the world and in power below that of several of the small republics of South America. Finally, in 1881, a board was appointed by the Secretary of the Navy to consider the needs of the service. This board recommended the building of sixty-eight vessels of various types.
Congress appropriated for two and at its next session increased the number to four, but reduced the size. The first of these acts was passed August 5, 1882, and in addition to the provision for the two ships made a sweeping cut in the number of officers which blocked promotion for ten years and subsequently caused endless trouble through the deficiencies in the numbers produced by it. Five monitors were started early in the ‘seventies,’ but work on them had long since ceased when it was revived by the act of 1882 which appropriated $400,000 toward their completion. In the next session $1,000,000 additional was appropriated, but the succeeding Congress withdrew all unexpended balances of this. From this time on each Congress made some addition to the navy. In 1886 the Maine and Texas were provided for and in 1890 three battleships of the Oregon type. In deference to the very general prejudice which existed against the high-sided, broadside battleships of European navies, these ships were given rather low free-board and were called ‘coast-line battleships.’ But the Iowa, which was next built, was frankly described as a seagoing battleship, the unreasoning prejudice in favor of the nearly useless low free-board monitor having been much modified.
The war with Spain caused increased attention to be given to naval affairs, not only because the navy had done well, but because the people were beginning to appreciate the importance of a powerful navy to a country which must be attacked from the sea and reach its enemies through its naval strength. They learned not only this, but that true naval defense lies not in passive protection of harbors by forts and harbor-defense ships, but in pursuing the enemy's naval forces at sea and destroying them. The realization of these things caused the navy to be considerably expanded; more heavy battleships, armored cruisers, and torpedo boats were authorized; and the enlisted force, which had been nearly doubled since 1882, was now greatly increased. In 1899, for the first time in nearly twenty years, Congress passed legislation of importance concerning the officers. Nearly all corps were slightly increased and the line and engineer corps were combined. This was practicable, as nearly all officers of both corps had been educated at the Naval Academy, and, while the line officers had received considerable instruction in steam engineering, the engineers had received some training in line officers' duties. The desirability of the ‘amalgamation’ of the corps is yet to be determined.
The organization of the Department of the Navy is described under Navy, Department of the.
The active list of officers of the navy in May, 1902, consisted of 1299 commissioned officers, 868 cadets, mates, and warrant officers, and 200 officers of marines. The retired list consisted of 475 commissioned officers (many of whom are performing active duty on shore), 116 warrant officers (a few of whom are employed on active duty), and 27 marine officers. The enlisted force authorized was 22,500 petty officers and men, 2500 naval apprentices, and 6000 marines. The commissioned officers included 874 officers of the line (which includes engineers), 190 of the medical corps, 136 of the pay corps, 41 constructors, 21 civil engineers, 24 chaplains, 12 professors of mathematics, and 1 secretary to the admiral. There were 124 naval cadets at sea, 301 cadets at the Naval Academy, 95 boatswains,, 91 gunners, 69 carpenters, 9 sailmakers, 148 warrant machinists, 25 pharmacists, and 6 mates.
The enlisted force of the navy is divided into five branches—seaman, artificer, special, messman, and marine. The first three have assimilated ratings which are classified in each branch under the heads of: (a) chief petty officers; (b) petty officers, first class; (c) petty officers, second class; (d) petty officers, third class; (e) seamen, first class; seamen, second class; seamen, third class. The chief petty officers of the seaman branch are chief master-at-arms (pay per month, $65), chief boatswain's mate ($50), chief gunner's mate ($50), chief gun-captain ($50), chief quartermaster ($50); in the artificer branch there are chief machinist ($70), chief electrician ($60), chief carpenter's mate ($50); in the special branch, chief commissary steward ($70), chief yeoman ($60), hospital steward ($60) , commissary steward ($60), bandmaster ($52). Petty officers of the first class consist of boatswain's mates, first class, master-at-arms, first class, machinists, first class, etc., with rates of pay from $36 to $60 per month. Petty officers of the second class consist of master-at-arms, second class, machinist, second class, etc., with pay ranging from $35 to $40. Pett}' officers of the third class consist of master-at-arms, third class, etc., pay $30 per month in all cases. The seamen, first class, consist of seamen gunners ($26), seamen ($24), apprentices, first class ($21), firemen, first class ($35), and musicians, first class ($32). The seamen, second class, consist of ordinary seamen ($19), apprentices, second class ($15), firemen, second class ($30), shipwrights ($25), musicians, second class ($30), buglers ($30), hospital apprentices ($20). The seamen, third class, consist of landsmen ($16), apprentices, third class ($9), and coal passers ($22). In the messmen branch, officers' stewards are paid $24 to $45 and their cooks $20 to $40. Ship's cooks (for the crew) are paid $25 to $55 and bakers $35 to $45. Officers' mess attendants are paid $16 to $24. In the enlisted force of the marine corps, sergeant-majors are paid $34 to $42; other sergeants, $18 to $42; drum major, $25 to $33; corporals, $15 to $23; drummers, trumpeters, and privates, $13 to $21; leader of the band, $125 to $175; second leader of the band, $75 to $83; musicians, first class, $60; musicians, second class, $50. All men not petty officers are given an outfit of clothing upon enlisting for the first time and marines of all ratings are given an ample allowance of clothing throughout their enlistment. The mess expenses of enlisted men are met by an allowance of a ration of 30 cents a day in addition to the rates of pay.
Officers of the navy who have creditable records are retired at the age of 62 years on three-fourths the pay received at date of retirement. Officers retired for disability or incapacity may receive three-fourths pay, half pay, or furlough pay (about one-third full pay). Marine officers, as well as army officers, are retired for age at 64 years. Enlisted men are pensioned for disability or retired after thirty years' service on three-fourths the highest rate of pay received.
The vessels of the United States navy in 1902 were 305 in number, the more important of which are grouped together in the tabular statement in the article Navies.
The United States possesses a number of naval stations, both at home and in its outlying territories and possessions. Of these, 6 are navy yards of the first class, located at New York, Norfolk, Mare Island (near San Francisco), Boston, Philadelphia, and Port Orchard (Puget Sound); 3 navy yards of the second class, located at Portsmouth (N. H.), Pensacola (Fla.), and New Orleans (La.); 4 of the third class, located at Port Royal (S. C.), Charleston (S. C.)—this will be an important yard when completed—San Juan (Porto Rico), Cavité (P. I.); 3 of the fourth class, located at Key West, Pollok (Mindanao, P. I.), and Isabela Basilan (P. I.); 2 training stations, located at Newport and Yerba Buena Island (San Francisco Bay); 1 naval academy at Annapolis; 1 torpedo station, at Newport; 1 gun factory at Washington; 1 ordnance proving ground, at Indian Head (near Washington); 5 coaling stations located at New London, Tortugas (near Key West), Hawaii (navy yard to be established), Guam, and Tutuila (Samoa).
Colonies. The following figures for area and population are based upon the census of 1900 and Government estimates:
|Total for the colonies||138,518||8,094,843|
The following table shows the trade relations between the United States and what are now its principal dependent territories, for the fiscal years 1893 and 1903:
|COLONIES||Exports to||Imports from|
Population. The population of the United States constitutes over one-half that of the Western Hemisphere and greatly exceeds that of any European country except Russia. The rapidity of the growth of the population is without parallel among civilized nations. In 1900 it was over fourteen times greater than in 1800. During the same period the population of the United Kingdom and the German Empire increased about two and one-half times each, while that of France increased by less than half. The growth of the population also has been remarkably steady. Except in the war decade, 1860-70, the increase in each decade since 1790 has been greater than in the decade preceding.
The following table shows the growth of the population by sections—the North as compared with the South and the East with the West:
It will be seen that the North has, until recent years, grown much more rapidly in population than the South. The more rapid growth of the South in the last decade was largely due to the development in the southwest. The gain in the region east of the Mississippi has been remarkably regular. The percentage of gain west of the Mississippi was formerly enormous, but is rapidly falling to that of the region east of the Mississippi. The percentage of gain of the former region in 1890-1900 was 25 and in the latter 19.2.
A considerable part of the country is losing in population. In the decade 1880-1890, 14.7 per cent. of the area of the North Atlantic and North Central States decreased in number of inhabitants, and in the following decade 19.5 per cent. of the same area represented a loss. In the South Atlantic and South Central States the percentage of area which lost population in the respective decades was 9.0 and 5.1. Of the region east of the Mississippi 17.8 per cent. lost population in the decade 1880-90, and 10.6 per cent. in the following decade. The corresponding percentages for the region west of the Mississippi were 10.1 and 11.1, respectively.
Estimates of the population prior to the first regular census place the figure at 200,000 in 1688 and 1,850,000 in 1770. At the time of the first census the population was almost wholly confined to the Atlantic coast region, the five most populous States being Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Massachusetts, and New York, in the order named. The growth of the country has involved an enormous migration of peoples. This movement may be considered as twofold: first, an interstate migration of native Americans; second, foreign immigration.
Interstate Migration. In the early period of migration the direction of the movement was determined largely by the opportunities afforded by waterways and mountain passes, and, later, by the railroad accommodations. The waterway system of the United States was admirably adapted to aid in the settlement, and the part it played is not easily over-emphasized. Not only did many of the early settlers secure transportation to their new homes by rivers, but they used the rivers also as avenues of commerce, and new settlements almost universally began along watercourses. In the North the immigrants from New England and New York passed almost wholly through the Mohawk Valley, and western New York developed rapidly along the line of the Erie Canal. By this route the Lake region and the Northwest in general were peopled. Farther to the south a large number of settlers found passage west by way of the valley of the Potomac, and by the Ohio and its tributaries. The settlements made in the region tributary to the Ohio were first to the south and later to the north of that stream. In the Southeast the Savannah and other rivers in like manner aided in opening up the interior region. The influence of streams in the Mississippi Valley was very marked. Through the main stream from the south, and through the Ohio from the east, large numbers of immigrants passed to the centre of the valley and thus were enabled to reach other regions watered by the Mississippi system, until settlements lined the main and tributary streams. The railroads came at an opportune time and made possible and profitable the settlement of regions that would otherwise have remained unsettled for a much longer time. The gold discoveries in California drew large numbers of immigrants in spite of the difficulties of the route, but, generally speaking, the Pacific Coast and the Cordilleran region awaited the construction of railroads. The movement of the population in the United States has been in the main westward, following the parallels of latitude. Almost every newly settled region, however, received representatives from all parts of the older settled regions, and there are a few very marked north and south movements. Thus, for instance, southern and central Indiana were filled largely with immigrants from North Carolina, Kentucky, and other Southern States. The early lead-miners and settlers in the adjacent corners of Wisconsin and Illinois on the Mississippi were Southerners. The recently settled Oklahoma and Indian Territory received large numbers from both the North and the South. As the West became well settled the westward movement grew less important; whereas in 1880 11 per cent. of the population of the Central States were born in the Atlantic Coast States, in 1900 only 6 per cent. of the population in the former group of States were born in the latter group. Again, in 1880 13.0 per cent. of the population of the Western division of States were born in the Atlantic States; in 1900 the corresponding per cent. was only 9.5. The absolute number, however, had increased during the period. The increase was much more marked in the percentage of the Central States population which the Western division of States contained. The rate increased from 17.5 per cent. of the population in 1880 to 24.0 per cent. in 1900. In the latter year there were 954,974 whites and 336,879 negroes born in the Southern States who lived in the North and 1,021,450 persons born in the North who lived in the South. New York and Ohio have each experienced a net loss of between six and seven hundred thousand by interstate migration of native born. Texas has made a net gain of 629,000.
Negro Population. See Negro in America.
Urban Population. From 1875 to 1900 there developed a marked tendency for the population of the United States to segregate in cities. Better transportation and communication facilities have enabled trade to concentrate in the large centres, and the development of an extensive factory system has also tended in the same direction. At the same time the greater use of farm machinery has reduced the amount of labor necessary on the farm. The following table shows the absolute and relative increase in the different classes of urban and rural population. It is noteworthy that while the percentage of increase of the urban population was almost as great in the decade 1890-1900 as in the preceding decade, there was in every class of cities but one (the group 4000 to 8000) a very much less percentage of gain in the latter of the two decades:
Number and Population of Cities Classified by Size, and Population of Country Districts, 1880, 1890, and 1900
|Number of cities||Population||Per cent. of
|Per cent. of|
| 1880 |
|Cities having a population of|
|100,000 and over||38||28||20||14,208,347||9,697,960||6,241,240||18.7||15.5||12.4||46.5||55.4|
|25,000 to 100,000||122||96||57||5,509,965||4,291,608||2,394,284||7.3||6.8||4.8||28.4||79.2|
|8,000 to 25,000||385||321||210||5,273,887||4,255,057||2,763,137||6.9||6.8||5.5||23.9||54.6|
|4,000 to 8,000||612||447||328||3,380,193||2,449,299||1,796,241||4.4||3.9||3.6||38.0||36.4|
|2,500 to 4,000||704||598||473||2,211,019||1,865,443||1,485,964||2.9||3.0||3.0||18.5||25.5|
|Continental U. S.||......||......||......||75,994,575||62,947,714||50,155,783||100.0||100.0||100.0||20.7||24.9|
The North Atlantic and the North Central States contain the great majority of the urban population. In 1900 the North Atlantic States had 16 and the North Central States 14 of the 38 cities having over 100,000 inhabitants each, while the former division had 54 and the latter 35 of the 122 cities with a population between 25,000 and 100,000.
The following table shows the population of cities having over 100,000 inhabitants in 1900, for the census years 1860, 1890, and 1900:
|Kansas City, Mo.||163,752||132,716||4,418|
Density. There were in 1900 25.6 persons to the square mile in the United States, as against about 600 persons in England, 270 persons in Germany, and about 53 persons in European Russia. The average density of population in the United States is greatly reduced because of the vast uninhabited areas in the western half of its territory. In some sections, such as Massachusetts or New Jersey, the density compares favorably with that of Western European countries, as shown in the following table:
|STATES AND TERRITORIES|| Land area
per sq. mi.
|North Atlantic Division:|
|Total North Atlantic Division||162,103||8,626,851||17,401,545||21,046,695||385,020||4,762,796||129.8|
|South Atlantic Division:|
|District of Columbia||60||51,687||230,392||278,718||86,702||20,119||4,645.3|
|Total South Atlantic Division||258,620||4,679,090||8,867,920||10,443,480||3,729,017||216,030||38.9|
|North Central Division:|
|Total North Central Division||753,550||5,403,595||22,362,279||26,333,004||495,751||4,158,474||34.9|
|South Central Division:|
|Total South Central Division||610,215||4,303,522||11,153,075||14,080,047||4,193,962||357,655||23.1|
|Total Western Division||1,175,650||178,818||3,027,613||4,091,349||30,254||846,321||3.5|
|Total United States (proper)||2,970,038||23,191,876||62,802,432||75,994,575||8,833,994||10,341,276||25.6|
|COPYRIGHT, 1902, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
Sex. The population contrasts with that of most European countries in that the males outnumber the females. The excess is greatly increased because of the greater number of male than of female immigrants.
In the North Atlantic and the South Atlantic States the sexes are almost equal in number. In some of these States, such as Massachusetts, the females are much in excess of the males, amounting in the State named to 51.3 per cent. of the total population. This is in part due to the large immigration of girls for work in the factories of that State, and in part to the emigration of men to the West. There is no State in the other divisions of States in which the females are equal in number to the males, and in the three States Montana, Wyoming, and Nevada the females are less than 40 per cent. of the total, while in Alaska they constitute only 27.9 per cent. of the total population. The following table shows the proportion of the sexes by nativity and color in 1900:
|NATIVITY AND COLOR||Males||Females|
|Native white—native parents||20,934,099||20,119,318|
|Native white—foreign parents||7,869,089||7,818,233|
Occupations. The agricultural industry still continues well in the lead with respect to the number of persons engaged. There has been, however, a marked relative decrease since 1880, as will be seen in the table below. In the period 1880-1900 there was a larger absolute gain in the number engaged in trade and transportation, and in manufacturing and mechanical pursuits, respectively, than there was in agriculture. The increase in trade and transportation has been especially noteworthy. The number of females engaged in occupations more than doubled in the twenty-year period. The percentage of females engaged in domestic personal service decreased, while there was a large gain in the percentage engaged in trade and transportation. The following table shows the number and percentage of persons engaged in the different occupations in 1880 and 1900. The group ‘manufacturing and mechanical pursuits’ includes those engaged in fishing (16,177 in 1900). and mining and quarrying (581,221), in addition to the number engaged in those pursuits (6,436,594). The number engaged in mining and quarrying much more than doubled between 1880 and 1900.
|Number||Per cent.||Number||Per cent.|
|Both sexes; all occupations||29,074,117||100.0||17,392,099||100.0|
|Domestic and personal service||5,580,657||19.2||3,423,815||19.7|
|Trade and transportation||4,766,964||16.4||1,866,481||10.7|
|Manufacturing and mechanical pursuits||7,085,992||24.4||3,784,726||21.8|
|Males; all occupations||23,754,205||100.0||14,744,942||100.0|
|Domestic and personal service||3,485,208||14.7||2,242,309||15.2|
|Trade and transportation||4,263,617||17.9||1,803,629||12.2|
|Manufacturing and mechanical pursuits||5,772,788||24.3||3,153,692||21.4|
|Females; all occupations||5,319,912||100.0||2,647,157||100.0|
|Domestic and personal service||2,095,449||39.4||1,181,506||44.6|
|Trade and transportation||503,347||9.4||62,852||2.4|
|Manufacturing and mechanical pursuits||1,313,204||24.7||631,034||23.8|
Language. In 1900 there were 1,403,212 per- sons over 10 years of age who could not speak English, considerably over half of them being females. The majority, 1,217,280, belonged to the census group ‘foreign white,’ constituting 12.2 per cent. of the total number of persons in this class. Only 0.6 per cent. of the native whites of foreign parents could not speak English. There were 38.2 per cent. of the Chinese, 61.6 per cent. of the Japanese, and 42.3 per cent. of the Indians who could not speak English.
Immigration. For a general discussion of immigration and its problems, see article on Immigration. The statistics given here are based upon the report of the Commissioner-General of Immigration for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1903.
The number of immigrants for 1903 (857,040) exceeded that of any previous year by 105,043, and represented an increase over 1902 of 190,517. Italy and Austria-Hungary, it will be seen, contributed more than one-half of the total from Europe. The aliens debarred during the year numbered 8769, or 1.2 per cent., a percentage greater than for any preceding year, with the exception of 1898 and 1899. Paupers and contract laborers constituted the greater part of the number rejected.
The following table shows the principal races represented, and the number each contributed to the sum total of steerage immigrants:
|Italian (north and south)||233,546|
|Croatian and Slavonian||32,907|
Of the total number (857,046) 102,431 were less than fourteen years of age; 714,053 were between the ages of fourteen and forty-five; while 40,562 were forty-five years of age and upward. Of all the immigrants 3341 could read but not write, and 185,007 could neither read nor write.
The following table shows the total number and sex of the immigrants and aliens who arrived during the fiscal year ending, June 30, 1903, and the countries from which they came:
|COUNTRIES||Sex of immigrants||Total
|France, including Corsica||3,513||2,065||5,578||4,243||9,821|
|Italy, including Sicily and Sardinia||186,966||43,656||230,622||4,930||235,552|
|Portugal, including the Cape Verde Islands and the Azores||5,829||3,488||9,317||154||9,471|
|Russian Empire (with Finland)||92,935||43,158||136,093||2,237||138,330|
|Servia, Bulgaria, and Montenegro||1,699||62||1,761||33||1,794|
|Spain, including Canary and Balearic Islands||1,733||347||2,080||1,139||3,219|
|Turkey in Europe||1,463||76||1,529||108||1,637|
|Europe not specified||3||2||5||.........||5|
|Turkey in Asia||5,114||2,004||7,118||387||7,505|
|Elsewhere in Asia||507||70||577||2||579|
|Australia, Tasmania, and New Zealand||796||354||1,150||405||1,555|
|Pacific Islands not specified||58||9||67||9||76|
|British North America||728||330||1,058||2,370||3,428|
|Elsewhere in Central America||423||174||597||397||994|
|All other countries||19||6||25||2||27|
|Total countries outside Europe and Asia||8,886||3,687||12,573||8,012||20,585|
Religion—The Colonial Period. The religious life of the United States has been profoundly affected by the fact that the period of the early settlement of this continent coincided with the great religious struggles in Europe of the seventeenth century. It was the reform within the Catholic Church, following the great Protestant schism, that started the Orders of that Church on their proselyting crusades, which from New Spain in the Southwest and New France in the North, extended into territory now embraced within the United States. The divisions among the Protestants themselves resulted in the planting of most of the English colonies, and determined that their future development should be along the line of multiplicity of sects, with extreme local independence. Puritanism, within and without the Established Church, was the prevailing influence among these colonists. In Virginia its influence was overthrown soon after the Cavalier immigration of the Cromwellian era. Maryland, settled under Catholic leadership, always retained a dominant Puritan element in its population. The same was true of the Carolinas, and later of Georgia, although, as in almost all the Southern colonies, the official class belonged to the Church of England. In New England for more than half a century the Puritans, outside of Rhode Island, constituted a veritable theocracy, in which citizenship was synonymous with church membership. Those settlers who passed from New England to the other colonies usually bore with them a modified form of Puritanism, which reappeared in the early Presbyterian development of the middle colonies, and in the Baptist development farther south. The religious influence of the early Dutch settlers of New York was never very strong, and before the colony passed into English control it was known as a most mixed sectarian centre. In New Jersey and Pennsylvania the Quaker element, although early abdicating political control, continued to be the leading social factor.
Throughout the colonial period the Puritans exercised almost undisputed religious sway in New England, while members of the Established Church nominally did the same for the Southern colonies. In the middle colonies no one sect acquired a hegemony. Here the diversified English sects were quickly joined by Huguenots from France, Palatines, Salzburgers, and Moravians from Germany, Covenanters from Scotland, and the Scotch-Irish Presbyterians. To a much more limited extent many of these immigrants settled in the Carolinas and Georgia, but their chief irruption into the South was by the way of the Appalachian Highlands. In this early sectarian diversity the middle colonies, more than those of any other section, were most typical of the succeeding development of the whole country. During the first century and a quarter of settlement there was naturally little of common religious experiences in the colonies. Some conscientious attempts were made to convert the Indians, of which the most important was the work of ‘The President and Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in New England.’ The ‘Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts,’ a Church of England organization, founded in 1701, did an important work in the middle and southern colonies. The most important religious experience of the eighteenth century was the ‘Great Awakening,’ centring about 1740, which profoundly affected all of the colonies, led to an extension of church-building, the founding of Princeton College as the result of a great Presbyterian development in the middle colonies, and the firm establishment of Baptist preëminence in the South. Because of some unwise practices not wholly avoidable, dissensions were introduced among the existing sects, yet the movement as a whole was most beneficial, not merely because it stamped upon American church life a strong evangelistic and missionary character, but because it led the way to the later establishment of full religious toleration. The later part of the colonial period was characterized by the rapid development of Presbyterianism, the formal establishment of the Reformed and Lutheran churches among the Germans, and the beginning of Methodism—all within the middle and southern colonies. See Congregationalism.
The National Period. The Revolutionary War, although it ushered in an era of complete religions toleration, so far as State and nation were concerned, was not on the whole favorable to the development of the religious life of the newly created States. By the end of the century, when spiritual conditions were at their lowest ebb, the country experienced a second great revival, which if it lacked some of the fervid manifestations of the first, was much more productive of lasting results. As in the former case there came about a secession of some of the more radical elements from the existing denominations in the Middle States and the South, and the severance of the Unitarians and Universalists from the traditional Congregational school in New England. Yet in the main the first three decades of the nineteenth century may be termed the ‘era of good feeling’ in a religious as well as a political sense. It was a period of great catholicity among the various denominations, with coöperation in foreign and home missionary work, in educational advancement, and in the work of Bible distribution. This was the period also when the Episcopal and Catholic churches began to develop along American lines and to assume an important position among American denominations; the latter being recruited most largely from foreign immigration, and the former from the other denominations. The great missionary movement toward foreign lands, the home missionary movement along the Western national border, the building of theological seminaries, the work among the negroes and Indians, protests against slavery, and the first movements in favor of total abstinence also date from this period. Early in the nineteenth century the last of the State aids in favor of New England Congregationalism was withdrawn.
The next thirty years (1830-1860) were characterized by a more intense denominational alignment, showing itself in a withdrawal of the separate churches from organizations for united effort, and in the creation of various denominational boards to carry on this work; in a new zeal for Church history along sectarian lines; in a general Protestant antipathy to the Catholic Church, which even displayed itself in the political world (see Know-Nothing), and in the division of some of the great denominations along sectional lines, especially over the great slavery question. The religious element was especially helpful on both sides during the Civil War, and was much in evidence in the organization of associations for the care of soldiers at the front and also at the North for the education of the freedmen. Only one of the great denominations severed by the slavery issue has as yet been reunited, but there is a feeling of cordiality, and to some extent of coöperation, between the separate parts of these sects.
An important revival, just preceding the Civil War, had stirred deeply the evangelical sentiment of all the churches, and this was quickened by a succeeding revival between 1870 and 1880. The influence of these movements has been much in favor of a sincere and hearty coöperation of all denominations in favor of fundamental religious work. While there has been no tendency toward a dropping of creeds, ceremonial forms, or denominational tenets, there has been a distinct advance in essential Christian union. This tendency has been much strengthened by such organizations as the Evangelical Association, the Young Men's Christian Association, and the various young people's organizations that have sprung up during the last two decades. (See Christian Endeavor; Epworth League; Westminster League; Young Men's Christian Association.) An interesting feature of the religious development of the last half-century has been the growth of certain non-orthodox sects. See Mormons; Christian Science.
Owing to the fact that Church and State are entirely distinct in the United States, it is difficult to obtain accurate information concerning religious statistics. The only figures available are those derived from the annuals and year books published by the several denominations. The accompanying table is intended to show the status of the leading religious sects of the United States for the years 1890 and 1900, and thus furnish a means of determining their growth or decline during this period. The figures supplied by the Roman Catholic Church included as members all persons who had been baptized, irrespective of age, and in order to place this denomination on the same footing as the others, a deduction of 1.5 per cent, from these returns has been made, with the idea of excluding from the membership all children under ten years of age. It was impossible to get exact figures for the Mormons, Christian Scientists, and Unitarians, and an estimate based upon the most reliable authorities has been made. In the case of the Jews, the number of families rather than the individual membership must be given.
|Disciples of Christ||3,773||6,528||7,246||10,528||871,017||1,149,982||32.0|
|German Evangelical Synod||680||909||870||1,129||187,432||203,574||8.5|
|Latter Day Saints:|
|Methodist Episcopal (South)||4,801||6,041||12,688||14,244||1,209,976||1,457,864||20.5|
|Methodist Episcopal (African)||3,321||5,659||4,124||5,775||452,725||673,504||48.0|
|United Brethren in Christ||2,267||1,897||3,731||4,229||202,474||243,841||20.0|
The large increase in the number of Christian Scientists is especially noteworthy. The Seventh Day Adventists, Mormons, the Salvation Army, and German Baptists also show an appreciable gain. The strongest denominations numerically are the Roman Catholics, Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterians, and Lutherans, in the order named. Details and latest statistics regarding the various denominations may be found under their respective headings.
The distribution of the several sects has largely followed the historic lines of immigration. The Roman Catholics are numerically the strongest in more than half the States, including New England, the far Northwest, and the Pacific divisions; while the Methodists and Baptists are about equally divided in the States south of Mason and Dixon's line. Massachusetts is the leading State of the Congregationalists, New York of the Episcopalians, Pennsylvania of the Presbyterians, North Carolina of the Methodists, and Georgia of the Baptists. See the articles on the various denominations.
Charities. The National Government has no department concerned directly with charities, their control being in the hands of the State and municipal governments. Many private organizations and societies are also interested in the subject. See under the several State articles; also the articles on Charities; Pauperism; Charities and Correction, The National Conference of; Charity Organization Society; etc.
History. Colonial Period. The territory included within the United States of America was originally occupied solely by numerous tribes of Indians. The Northeastern coast was probably visited about the year A.D. 1000 and subsequently by the Northmen (see Vineland), and other navigators may in the following five centuries have sighted parts of the coast; but the existence of the American continent was unknown to the world at large until after Columbus's discovery in 1492. In 1497 John Cabot reached the coast of America, probably in the neighborhood of Cape Breton. The Portuguese Cortereal explored the coast southward from the Gulf of Saint Lawrence in 1500-01, and probably from as early a date as 1504 fishermen from Normandy and Brittany frequented the shores of Newfoundland. In 1513 Juan Ponce de Leon explored a portion of Florida in a romantic search for the fountain of youth; and in 1520 some Spanish vessels from Santo Domingo were driven upon the coast of Carolina. During the following year, through the conquests of Cortés (q.v.) and his followers, Mexico, including the territory later known as Texas, New Mexico, and California, became a province of Spain. In the same decade Verrazano explored the coast between North Carolina and Newfoundland and Narvaez made his disastrous expedition to Florida. Ferdinand de Soto in 1539-42 led a Spanish expedition from the coast of Florida westward, discovering the Mississippi River (April, 1541). Simultaneously with this expedition, Coronado's men explored a great part of what is now the Southwestern United States. A Spanish settlement was made at Saint Augustine, Florida, in 1565; and in 1584-85 Sir Walter Ralegh (q.v.) sent two expeditions to the coast of North Carolina, and attempted to form a settlement on Roanoke Island. None of the settlements attempted during the sixteenth century, however, except Saint Augustine, had any permanence; and it was not until the seventeenth century that the Europeans, and especially the English, devoted their enterprises to colonization rather than to exploration. King James in 1606 granted a charter to a large colonizing corporation which comprised two companies, the London Company, which received certain rights between 34° and 41° north latitude, and the Plymouth Company, which received certain rights between 38° and 45°. The London Company in 1607 founded Jamestown, Virginia, the first permanent English settlement within the limits of the present United States. Here in 1619 a representative assembly was called, the first in the New World. In 1607, also, two members of the Plymouth Company, Sir Ferdinand Gorges and Sir John Popham, sent out an expedition to the Kennebec, where the settlers experienced a severe winter, and in 1608 abandoned the undertaking. In 1620 certain dissenters who had secured a grant from the London Company landed by mistake farther northward and settled Plymouth. Between these two colonies the Dutch had already established themselves (1613) at New Amsterdam. Quebec was settled in 1608, and a large part of the country on the Great Lakes and on the Mississippi was explored by Nicolet (1634), by Marquette and Joliet (1673), and by La Salle (1682), and settlements were early made by the French at the outposts of Kaskaskia and Arkansas Post, and at Mobile and Vincennes. Thus the beginnings were made of two distinct movements of the incoming population, in the course of one of which the English were to occupy practically the entire Atlantic seaboard of the present United States, excluding Florida, while in the course of the other the French were to establish themselves at strategic points on the two great waterways. The colonizing work of the French was such as to make conspicuous the trading post, the military element, and the bureaucratic class, and to minimize the features of public development, of local political life, and of permanence in method and purpose. The English, on the other hand, brought with them their school, their Church, and their political forms, and founded colonies on lines which were adhered to throughout their later development. (The early history of the various colonies, the union of which formed the United States, will be found under the heads of the different States.) In some of the colonies representative governments were maintained, in which all officers, both executive and judicial, as well as the entire legislature, were chosen by the people. On the other hand, in the royal provinces, such as Virginia and New York, the chief judicial and executive officers, as well as members of the upper branch of the legislature, were appointees of the Crown, the general population sharing in the provincial government only through the choice of the members of the legislature. This distribution of privilege characterized also the proprietary provinces, such as Maryland, in which, however, appointments were made by the proprietors instead of by the Crown. Thus in the royal and proprietary provinces the ultimate authority was outside of the province, while in charter provinces all authority apparently was within each province, and there was in the scheme by which these provinces were organized no effective means of subordinating their political actions to the power of the central administration except through the alteration or abolition of their charters.
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
During the colonial period there were several instances of the tendency of the colonies, having very similar institutions and ideals, to act jointly as a confederate body. The first effort at a union of colonies was in 1643, when Massachusetts Bay, Plymouth, Connecticut, and New Haven formed, under the title of ‘The United Colonies of New England,’ a confederacy, which existed for nearly forty years, for mutual defense against the French, Dutch, and Indians. They also experienced the benefit of united action during the early Indian wars, and again in 1754, the year of the opening of the French and Indian War (q.v.). At that time also, the colonies being strongly advised by the Lords of Trade to unite for general defense, a formal plan for a permanent general government of all the English colonies was drawn up by Benjamin Franklin (q.v.) and presented at the Albany Convention (q.v.); but it was rejected by both the colonies and the Crown.
Although the several colonies were at no time organically connected, except through the King, the basis for union was early laid in the establishment of local governments in which the controlling principles were similar. There appeared also a substantial identity in forms and in practices of local government. This made it natural that occasionally during the colonial period there should appear marked tendencies toward union. In some respects, however, different types of population distinguished the several portions of settled territory, a fact due in some measure to the various classes of people in England from which the immigrants came. Thus during the period between 1620 and 1640 large numbers of dissenters withdrew from England, and the settlements in the north increased in number and population, the main colony of Massachusetts Bay being established in 1628-30, and numerous towns in the neighboring district being soon founded, while settlements were made (1635-36) at Hartford, Wethersfield, and Windsor, the three towns which originally constituted the colony of Connecticut, and for the administration of which was adopted in 1639 the first written constitution of representative government. In 1638 the colony of New Haven was established. In this period also the same body of population extended northward into what became New Hampshire, as well as into the northeastern portion of Massachusetts. On the other hand, a representative of the aristocratic class founded the colony of Maryland in 1634. During the period of the Commonwealth in England most of the immigrants were drawn from the Cavalier and Royalist classes, which were then out of power, and by this phase of migration Virginia and Maryland especially profited. Following the Restoration the increased power of the King in colonial politics was illustrated in the grant of the Carolinas to a body of proprietors, and of Pennsylvania to a single proprietor, while in the same period New York, acquired in 1664 by conquest from the Dutch, was organized as a royal province. The administration of New Jersey was given over to a body of proprietors, and the various settlements in Rhode Island were organized by charter into a colony. Throughout this period there was a steady development of uniformity in the provincial governments. At the basis of it all lay the principles of a democratic or representative government, which were brought to America by the earliest colonists. A representative and popular government was established in Virginia as early as 1619, before the founding of the New England colonies, in which democratic institutions existed from the outset. Coincident with this growth of uniformity, and this preparation for unity in organization as well as in action, appeared indications of divergence in theory as to the proper position of the provinces within the English State. On the one hand, in the instances where even the executive was chosen within the province and where no provision was made for the approval of provincial laws by the King, there appeared substantially independent local autonomy, the prevalence of which type would create a thoroughly decentralized system of government. On the other hand, in the instances where the Governor and all important executive and judicial officers were appointees of the Crown, where the governor's council was chosen by the Crown, and where all provincial laws were subject to the approval of the Crown, there was created a strongly centralized form of imperial government. Both of these types of provincial administration appeared in the colonial period, although they were irreconcilable, and as one form of government recognized privileges which the colonists would not relinquish and which the home Government would not recognize as rights, and as the other form included powers which the colonists claimed were improperly exercised by the King, it was inevitable that the attempt forcibly to harmonize the two systems should create such friction as to foreshadow revolution. Originally, the colonies were regarded as within the King's exclusive jurisdiction, and it was not until the Protectorate and the reign of Charles II. that they were considered as organic portions of the Empire, so as to be governed by Parliament: then Navigation Laws (q.v.) were passed to give British ships a monopoly of commerce, certain articles produced in the colonies were required to be sent to England, and duties were levied on commodities sent from one colony to another. Protests were made against these assumptions; Massachusetts and other provinces asserted their rights of self-government and of exemption from Parliamentary control; and it was not until the English revolution of 1688 that settled and uniform relations with the several colonies were established, and the increased authority of Parliament, both within the realm and in the colonies, was fully recognized.
The effect of that revolution made more critical the underlying problem of the colonial situation, and gradually made conspicuous the issue whether in the colonies the legislative authority of Parliament was paramount. On the other hand, the revolution had a beneficent effect upon the colonies in terminating unrest and friction, which had characterized the administration of the later Stuarts. Even in Virginia the prevalent discontent had been given violent expression in Bacon's Rebellion (q.v.) in 1676, while in the Northern colonies the many contests over jurisdiction and rights and the arbitrary rule established by Andros (q.v.), who had been appointed Governor of all the colonies north of latitude 41° N., developed a general disaffection among the people to the home Government and culminated in the seizure of Andros and the overthrow of his administration (1689).
In 1713, by the Treaty of Utrecht, England, which had been importing slaves from Africa into its American and West Indian colonies, obtained a monopoly of the slave trade to Spanish America for thirty-three years, and as a result of this arrangement slavery was extended in, and to some extent forced upon, all the American colonies. See Slavery.
During much of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries there was a general feeling of loyalty toward the mother country. The sons of the more wealthy colonists, especially in the South, were educated in England. English literature was widely read in the colonies; the colonies, though distinct, and differing in origin and character—Puritan in the East, largely Dutch Reformed in New York, Quaker in Pennsylvania, to a considerable extent Catholic in Maryland, and Anglican in Virginia—were yet united by language, blood, and institutions.
These influences toward harmony with the mother country served to obscure, to a considerable degree, the recurrent disputes over charter rights and trade privileges, which continued to prevail in the eighteenth century; and the tendency to union among the several colonies was strengthened by the outbreak of the French and Indian War (q.v.). This was the last in the series of conflicts (see King William's War; Queen Anne's War; and King George's War; also see Canada) which resulted from the respective territorial ambitions in North America of France and Great Britain, and left the latter in undisputed possession of Canada as well as of the territory lying between the Alleghanies and the Mississippi. As a result of the termination of this long continued struggle with the French, which was followed by the Pontiac conspiracy of 1763 (see Pontiac), the colonies, which had naturally borne the brunt of the various conflicts in America, were relieved of much of their dependence upon the home Government, and were left freer than they had earlier been to look after what they conceived to be their rights and interests. On the other hand, the financial necessities resulting from that war led to measures bv the home Government which aroused the colonists, strengthened their feelings of unity among themselves, and lessened their attachment to the English administration. Under such circumstances, the basis of intercolonial unity gave force to the expressions and acts of the home Government, as when in 1761 the enforcement of the Navigation Acts by general search-warrants (see Assistance, Writs of) caused strong resentment against the home Government, especially in New England, where the Admiralty attempted to enforce the law, many vessels being seized, and the colonial trade with the West Indies being seriously affected. In 1765 the passing of an act of Parliament (see Stamp Act) for collecting a colonial revenue by requiring the use of stamps not only upon many business papers and legal documents, but also upon certain articles of ordinary use, caused general indignation, and led even to riots. Steps were promptly taken to unite against the common danger of an extension of the authority of Parliament; the famous Stamp Act Congress, in which nine colonies were represented, met at New York in September, 1765, and issued a statement of grievances and a declaration of rights. The stamps were destroyed or reshipped to England, and popiilar societies, called ‘Sons of Liberty’ (q.v.), were formed in the chief towns. In 1766 the Stamp Act was repealed, to the general relief of the colonists; but the principle of colonial taxation by Parliament was reaffirmed, and in 1767 duties were levied on glass, paper, printers' colors, and tea. This renewed attempt produced, in 1768, disturbances in Boston, where Governor Gage was furnished with a military force to preserve order and enforce the laws, and where thenceforth the relations between the House of Representatives and the royal Governor were especially strained, much bitter feeling among the people being caused by the so-called Boston massacre (q.v.) of March 5, 1770. In 1773 the duties were repealed, excepting 3d. a pound on tea, when the matter resolved itself into a question of principle, and from North to South the people became determined that this tax should not be paid. In Boston a crowd, disguised as Indians, threw a cargo into the harbor (December 16, 1773). As a penalty for such acts, Parliament passed, in 1774, a series of punitive statutes, including the so-called Charter Act, by which the popular element in the provincial government of Massachusetts was greatly reduced and by which the former independence and authority of town-meetings was strictly limited, and including also the Boston Port Bill (q.v.), by which the chief town of New England was to be no longer a port of entry. Boston was reduced to great distress, but received the active sympathy and encouragement of all the colonies.
The people of Massachusetts, relying upon the theory that their charter partook of the nature of a compact which could be altered or abrogated only by the consent of themselves and of the King, denied the right of Parliament to pass statutes in any way modifying their charter rights, and insisted that the course of the King and Parliament released the colonists from all obligations and reduced them, so far as government was concerned, to a ‘state of nature.’ Thus, as early as the fall of 1774 the colonists began to organize local government on the assumption that administrative relations with England had been terminated, and that the authority of the home Government had ceased. Under such circumstances it was inevitable that the Administration should undertake to apply a policy of repression. For further details of colonial history, see, besides the articles already referred to, the articles on the various States.
War of Independence. It was now determined to enforce the authority of Parliament over the colonies, and a fleet, containing several ships of the line and 10,000 troops, was sent to America. The colonies, still asserting their loyalty, and with little or no thought of separation from the mother country, prepared to resist what they considered the unconstitutional assumptions of the home Government and the unwarranted violations of their rights as English citizens. Volunteers were drilling and depots of provisions and military stores were being formed. The sending of a small force from Boston to seize one of these depots at Concord. Mass., and to capture two of the most prominent provincial leaders, Samuel Adams and John Hancock, who were staying temporarily at Lexington, led to engagements at Lexington and at Concord (see Lexington), and the real beginning of the Revolutionary War, on April 19, 1775. The British troops were compelled to retreat, and the news of this event promptly brought from fifteen to twenty thousand armed provincials to the vicinity of Boston, to which place the British, then numbering less than 4000, were effectually confined. On May 25, 1775, reinforcements under Howe, Clinton, and Burgoyne increased the strength of the British army to 10,000 men. Outlying royal forts and arsenals, with their arms and munitions, were taken possession of by the colonists, and on May 10th and May 11th respectively Ticonderoga and Crown Point, the principal Northern fortifications, were surprised by organized forces, and their artillery and stores appropriated. A congress of the colonies, known as the Continental Congress, had assembled at Philadelphia in September, 1774, and after appeals to the home Government, which proved unavailing, this body resolved to raise and equip an army of 20,000 men, and on June 15, 1775, appointed George Washington commander-in-chief. On June 17th, Breed's Hill, in Charlestown, near Boston, where a considerable force of Americans had hastily intrenched themselves, was taken by assault by the British troops, but with so heavy a loss that the defeat had for the provincials the moral effect of a victory. (See Bunker Hill, Battle of.) After a winter of great privation, during which they were closely besieged within the only city in their control, the British were compelled on March 17, 1776, to evacuate Boston, carrying away in their fleet to Halifax a large number of Loyalists. To forestall an expected attack by Sir Guy Carleton, Governor of Canada, upon Ticonderoga, an American force under Montgomery was sent in August, 1775, to invade Canada by way of Lake Champlain, while in September another American force under Benedict Arnold was sent from Cambridge through the forests of Maine against Quebec. Montgomery captured Chambly, Saint Johns, and Montreal, but on December 31, 1775, the Americans were defeated before Quebec, Montgomery being killed and Arnold wounded, and in the summer of 1776 the Americans were forced to abandon Canada.
After the evacuation of Boston the British Government put forth a stronger effort to reduce the colonies to submission. An army consisting of 55,000 men, of whom 17,000 were Hessian mercenaries, was sent, under the command of Sir William Howe, to put down this ‘wicked rebellion.’ The Congress, declaring on May 15, 1776, that the royal authority had ceased, recommended to the several colonies to adopt “such governments as might best conduce to the safety and happiness of the people;” and most of the thirteen colonies soon adopted constitutions as independent and sovereign States. On June 7, 1776, Richard Henry Lee (q.v.), of Virginia, offered a resolution in Congress, declaring that “these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown; and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved.” This resolution was adopted on July 2d by the votes of twelve out of thirteen colonies, the New York delegates, who had not as yet received instructions, being excused from voting. A committee, consisting of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and Robert R. Livingston, had been appointed, on June 10th, to prepare a declaration in accordance with the above resolution; and the Declaration of Independence (q.v.), written by Jefferson, based upon the equality of men, and asserting that “all government derives its just powers from the consent of the governed,” on July 4, 1776, received the final assent of the delegates of twelve colonies (the New York delegates still not voting), who thus undertook to dissolve the allegiance of the colonies to the British Crown, and to declare them free and independent States.
After the evacuation of Boston General Washington, with the greater portion of his army, had hastened to New York, which was the centre of hostilities during the following summer. General Howe, having been joined by his brother, Admiral Lord Howe, and Sir Henry Clinton, defeated the Americans in the battle of Long Island, August 27, 1776 (see Long Island, Battle of), and thus was enabled to compel the evacuation of New York and secure the possession of its harbor and of the lower Hudson River. In spite of the gallantry of the Americans at the Battle of Harlem Heights, the British retained secure control of the city, and then sent a force from Long Island Sound into Westchester County, where was fought the battle of White Plains (October 28, 1776), after which Washington, with the larger part of his army, crossed over into New Jersey, leaving, however, a considerable force in the upper portion of Manhattan Island. There, on November 16th, Fort Washington (q.v.) was captured, along with its entire garrison of about 2600 men. Washington then retreated across New Jersey toward Philadelphia, closely followed by the British, under Cornwallis, into whose hands Newark, New Brunswick, and Princeton successively fell. The British then awaited the freezing of the Delaware in order to be able to occupy Philadelphia. On Christmas night General Washington crossed in boats amid floating ice, and early on the following morning surprised and captured a Hessian force at Trenton (q.v.). On January 3, 1777, he fought the successful battle of Princeton (q.v.), by which the waning confidence of the colonists was to a large extent restored, and the prospects of the American arms materially improved. The British thereupon retired to New York, where they spent the rest of the winter.
In the meantime Silas Deane and Benjamin Franklin had been sent to France to solicit recognition and aid, and although formal recognition was delayed, important assistance was privately given in money and supplies, and European volunteers—the Marquis de Lafayette, Baron Steuben, Baron de Kalb, Kosciuszko, and Pulaski—rendered most important services. Efforts were also made, but without success, to induce the British colonies of Canada and Nova Scotia to unite in the struggle for independence, and diplomatic agents in Europe attempted to secure recognition and material assistance from various Powers. Late in September, 1777, after the defeat of the Americans on the 11th at Chadd's Ford on the Brandywine (see Brandywine, Battle of), the British, who under Howe had come by water from New York to the head of Chesapeake Bay, took possession of Philadelphia; and Washington, after attacking the British unsuccessfully on October 4th, at Germantown (q.v.). went into winter quarters early in December at Valley Forge (q.v.), where his troops suffered greatly from cold and hunger.
In the meanwhile General Burgoyne was leading an army of 7000 British and Hessian troops with probably a larger force of Canadians and Indians, from Canada into northern New York, in order to form a junction with the British on the lower Hudson, and thus, by gaining virtual control of New York, separate New England from the rest of the Confederacy. In co-operation with him another force, mostly of Loyalists and Indians, under Saint Leger, was to proceed from Canada by way of Oswego and the Mohawk Valley to the Hudson, but this force was unable to capture Fort Stanwix on its line of march, and after the battle of Oriskany withdrew. (See Saint Leger; Fort Stanwix; and Oriskany, Battle of.) Burgoyne's march was delayed by felled trees and destroyed roads; the defeat of a large force of foragers at Bennington (August 16, 1777) was a severe reverse (see Bennington, Battle of); and after the two sharp battles of Saratoga (q.v.)—on September 19th and October 7th—he was compelled to capitulate to General Gates, October 17, 1777, and England heard with dismay of the loss of an entire army. The Americans took between 5000 and 6000 prisoners and much artillery.
This victory has been regarded as the turning-point of the war. Almost equally important with its military results was its effect upon international relations, in that it gave to the European Powers the first definite proof of the possibility and even the probability of colonial success, and made it feasible for France, with a greater degree of propriety, to recognize formally the new nation, and to enter into a treaty of alliance with the United States on February 6, 1778, a step which largely altered both the military and political situation, and hastened the final success of the Americans. The recognition of the new nation by France prompted Lord North to a policy of reconciliation, but his commissioners, though empowered to grant virtually everything for which the colonists had originally taken up arms, were unable to secure a favorable reception without a prior recognition of the independence of the United States.
In the summer of 1778 the Americans were strengthened by the presence of a French fleet and of a considerable land force, and after the abandonment of Philadelphia by Sir Henry Clinton, who had replaced Howe in May, 1778, their opponents in the north were confined to Newport and to the region around New York City. As Clinton withdrew from Philadelphia and marched across New Jersey toward New York, he was followed by Washington, who gained a qualified success at Monmouth on June 28, 1778. (See Monmouth, Battle of.) Thereafter the greater energy on both sides was devoted to the campaign in the South, though in 1778-79 George Rogers Clark (q.v.) achieved a virtual conquest of the Northwest. Savannah was taken (December 29, 1778) by the British, who in the following two years, under Clinton and Cornwallis, secured control of Georgia and South Carolina, taking Charleston May 12, 1780. In June, 1780, General Gates was placed in command of the Southern Department, and on August 16th was badly defeated by Cornwallis at Camden (q.v.). Soon afterwards, on September 23, 1780, General Benedict Arnold's treasonable plot to surrender West Point was frustrated through the capture of Major André. The first real reverse of the British forces in the South was that experienced at the hands of the hurriedly gathered backwoodsmen at King's Mountain (q.v.), October 7, 1780. In the following December General Gates was superseded by General Greene as commander of the American army in the South, and a more active campaign was thereafter undertaken. At the Cowpens, January 17, 1781, the force of Tarleton, the British cavalry leader, was overwhelmed by the Americans under Morgan, while Cornwallis, after a dearly bought victory over Greene at Guilford Court House, March 15, 1781, was compelled to retire to Wilmington. Two more important battles, at Hobkirk's Hill (April 25, 1781) and Eutaw Springs (September 8, 1781), marked the contest for the control of the Southern territory. Finally the army of Cornwallis was confined between the York and James rivers, where, with the French controlling the sea, the British commander was unable to hold out long against the Americans and French under Washington and Rochambeau. His surrender at Yorktown (q.v.) on October 19, 1781, assured the triumph of the American cause. The provisional treaty of peace was signed at Paris in November, 1782, a cessation of hostilities was declared by Washington in January, 1783, and on September 3, 1783, the definitive Treaty of Paris was signed. (See Paris, Treaties of.) This treaty, besides recognizing the independence of the United States, secured to the country the territory between the Alleghanies and the Mississippi. On November 25, 1783, New York was evacuated by the British.
The Confederation. The need of more unity of action having been felt, Articles of Confederation, first reported to Congress in July, 1776, had been adopted by that body in November, 1777, and by May, 1779, all the States had formally ratified them except Maryland, which refused its assent so long as the various States continued to hold their Western lands. Finally New York offered to cede to the General Government her claims to such lands, and, it being evident that other States would follow her example, Maryland gave her assent to the Articles in 1781, and the necessary unanimous adoption having thus been secured, the Articles of Confederation went into effect. The result was the formation of a ‘league of friendship’ only, the General Government having no power of coercion, and the various States being virtually independent. The Articles provided, among other things, that each State was to have only one vote in Congress, that Congress was to be vested with the power of declaring war and peace and of negotiating treaties, that both the General Government and the States were to have the power of coining and issuing money, that the various States were to be intrusted with the regulation of commerce and the raising of revenue, that Congress on appeal was to decide all controversies between States, and that when Congress was not in session a ‘Committee of the States,’ appointed by that body, was to manage the general affairs of the Confederation.
When the long war had ended, the States had become free, but the inefficacy of their form of federal government became more and more apparent, and the condition of the young Confederacy seemed most discouraging. Its treasury was empty; it was burdened with a foreign debt of $8,000,000, domestic obligations of $30,000,000, and a paper currency of nearly $90,000,000 which no one would receive. Moreover, the Congress whose predecessor had incurred these various obligations had now no power to provide for discharging them. It could only make recommendations to the States and urge them to provide their share toward the expenses of the Government, and was wholly without power to enforce either upon individuals or upon the States a compliance with its requirements, while, furthermore, the States were themselves in debt, and unable as well as unwilling to respond to the demands of the Congress. An amendment to the Articles of Confederation empowering Congress to levy a five per cent. duty on imported goods was proposed in 1782, but was defeated by Rhode Island, which alone of the States withheld its assent. The resistance offered to constituted authority in Massachusetts in 1786-87, when a portion of the people actually organized to resist the collection of debts and to close the local courts (see Shays's Rebellion), emphasized the need of a stronger central government.
After the close of the Revolutionary struggle, weakness of the General Government was even more keenly realized than before. Congress had no power of maintaining an army or navy, no control over commerce, no means of actually raising public funds, and no effectual mode of enforcing its will even in matters over which it nominally had jurisdiction. In the words of Washington, it was “little more than the shadow without the substance.” Moreover, from its want of power, it soon became despised and neglected by those who should have been its chief supporters, and the ablest men preferred to devote themselves to the polities of their own States. Congress consisted of scarcely more than twenty members, few of whom in its closing years were men of any great influence. The evils of this lack of system were soon made evident, when, after some difficulty, twelve States had assented to a general system of import duties, and the thirteenth, New York, resisted, and thus alone was able to defeat a measure which was essential to the credit and security of the whole nation. So, too, articles in the treaty with England were set at naught by the different State governments, laws being passed by the various Legislatures in direct defiance of these articles, while Congress was unable to do more than merely to exhort them to annul these laws and to comply with the treaty. In this state of affairs, thoughtful men began to see that, if the United States were to exist as a nation, there must be a central government with direct power both in internal and external affairs, able to carry on foreign negotiations in the name of the nation, to create statutes operative upon all the citizens of the States, to enforce these statutes, and, if necessary, to punish those who neglected them. The first men clearly to perceive and boldly to declare this were Alexander Hamilton and James Bowdoin.
The Constitution. Though Hamilton had been among the most ardent supporters of American independence, he was not an advocate of the system of government that had been the immediate result of the war. He wished his countrymen to secure the advantages of a strong central government, and the model that he had in mind was the English system, without the monarchical principle. In 1785 an opportunity occurred of effecting, or at least of suggesting, a radical change. In that year commissioners were appointed by Virginia and Maryland to settle certain difficulties about the navigation of the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. They met at Mount Vernon, Washington's home, where a plan was proposed for settling commercial duties, and this led to the proposal, made by the Assembly of Virginia, for a general conference of commissioners from all the States to consider the state of trade. Hamilton, seeing that this conference might be made the instrument of more fundamental changes, persuaded New York to send commissioners, himself among them; and in 1786 commissioners from five States met at Annapolis, Md. (See Annapolis Convention.) Hamilton laid before them a report, giving reasons for calling a convention of delegates from all the States to consider the reorganization of the National Government. Such a proposal was adopted by the conference and submitted to Congress, by which it was indorsed, with the recommendation that each State should send delegates to a National Constitutional Convention. The suggestion was generally adopted, and the convention met at Philadelphia in May, 1787. Washington was chosen president of the body, which proceeded to create an entirely new scheme of government rather than to revise the existing plan as had been originally intended.
The two paramount questions at issue were the powers of the Federal Government and of the individual States and the system by which the States were to be represented in the Federal Legislature. Two tentative plans were laid before the convention, one by Edmund Randolph of Virginia, the other by William Paterson of New Jersey. The ‘Virginia Plan,’ as the former was commonly called, provided that in each branch of the National Legislature representation should be according to population, while the ‘New Jersey Plan’ provided for equal representation of the States in each branch. The practical question at issue was settled by the so-called ‘Connecticut Compromise,’ according to which in one branch of the National Legislature representation of the States should be according to population, while in the other branch it should be equal. Other compromises were also necessary in the convention, as a result of which Congress was to be given control over commerce, three-fifths of the slaves were to be counted in estimating the population of a State with reference to its representation in the Lower House, and the various States were given power to admit imported slaves for twenty years. The frame of government drawn up, with subsequent amendments, has continued to be the Constitution of the United States to the present day. See Constitution.
The difficulties incident to the ratification of the proposed Constitution were enormous. The old Congress was still in existence as the National Government, but it was in even lower repute, and of less influence, than it had been earlier in the decade, and it confessedly had neither the authority nor the power to take effective steps for the establishment of the new form of government. The convention accordingly determined to report its proceedings to the old Congress, which body was to submit the Constitution to each State for acceptance or rejection, the people of each State expressing themselves through a convention called for the purpose. All questions at issue were now revived in the vigorous and protracted discussions and contests which took place in several of these conventions. Two bitterly opposing parties arose, the Federalists (q.v.) and the Anti-Federalists, the former favoring the Constitution and the latter rejecting it. Some of the States ratified the Constitution promptly; but in others, especially Massachusetts, Virginia, and New York, the opposition was strongly developed and it was only after a protracted struggle that the opposition of such men as Patrick Henry in Virginia, and of Melancthon Smith and Yates in New York, was overcome. To this end the chief single contribution was made by the influence of The Federalist (q.v.), the series of essays produced by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay, in explanation and justification of the convention's work. Finally, on June 21, 1788, the ninth State, New Hampshire, ratified the Constitution, and, according to the terms of the instrument itself, by that event it went into force. The two important States of Virginia and New York followed with their approval on June 25th and July 26th, respectively, leaving only North Carolina and Rhode Island in the anomalous position of not being members of the new nation which claimed jurisdiction over their territory.
During the whole period of the Confederation Congress had enacted only one piece of legislation of extraordinary and enduring importance—the Ordinance of 1787 for the government of the Northwest Territory. (See Northwest Territory.) After the ratification of the Constitution by the requisite number of States, the old Congress arranged a plan for carrying the new government into operation. The first Wednesday of January, 1789, was selected for the choice of electors for President and Vice-President, the first Wednesday in February for the voting of the electors, and the first Wednesday in March as the date of the inauguration. The 69 electors who met in February all voted for George Washington, who was accordingly chosen President. The next highest number of electoral votes cast was 34, which were given to John Adams, who was thus elected Vice-President in accordance with the method then prescribed by the Constitution. Owing to delays, however, the actual inauguration of the new Government did not take place until April 30, 1789.
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
I. and II. Administration of George Washington (1789-1797). Cabinets.—Secretary of State, Thomas Jefferson, Virginia, September 26, 1789; Edmund Randolph, Virginia, January 2, 1794; Timothy Pickering, Pennsylvania, December 10, 1795. Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, New York, September 11, 1789; Oliver Wolcott, Connecticut, February 2, 1795. Secretary of War, Henry Knox, Massachusetts, September 12, 1789; Timothy Pickering, Pennsylvania, January 2, 1795; James McHenry, Maryland, January 27, 1796. Attorney-General, Edmund Randolph, Virginia, September 26, 1789; William Bradford, Pennsylvania, January 27, 1794; Charles Lee, Virginia, December 10, 1795. Postmaster-General, Samuel Osgood, Massachusetts, September 26, 1789; Timothy Pickering, Pennsylvania, August 12, 1791; Joseph Habersham, Georgia, February 25, 1795.
George Washington was sworn into office on April 30, 1789, at New York, where the newly elected Congress, the first under the Constitution, had assembled earlier in the month. The House of Representatives elected Frederick A. Muhlenberg, of Pennsylvania, as the first Speaker. The first Congress witnessed a gradual formation of two political groups, opposing each other on questions of centralization and decentralization, those favoring a liberal interpretation of the powers of the Federal Government being known as Federalists, and those favoring a very strict interpretation and limitation of these powers soon styling themselves Democratic-Republicans or simply Republicans. The latter was made up in great part of the Anti-Federalists of 1787-88, but also came to include some of the advocates of the Constitution, Madison among them. Both factions were represented in Washington's first Cabinet, Hamilton coming to be the recognized leader of the Federalists, and Jefferson coming to be regarded as the ablest advocate of the strict-constructionist doctrine.
Three important events of Washington's first administration, all closely connected with the work of Hamilton, were the inauguration of a scheme of tariff (see Tariff), directed primarily toward the raising of revenue, but also based upon the expediency of encouraging domestic industries, the establishment in 1791 of a national bank (see Bank, Banking), planned to serve partly as a fiscal agency of the new Government, and the systematizing and funding of the national debt, in which were now included not only the strictly national debts, but also those obligations of the several States which had been incurred for national purposes during the Revolution. The political controversy over this assumption of State debts by the National Government was, for purposes of convenient adjustment, combined with the pending controversy as to the location of the national capital, the opponents of ‘assumption’ yielding upon that proposition in sufficient number to secure in return the choice of the banks of the Potomac as the seat of government. The Constitution had been put into operation without any settlement of the delicate and vital question of the authority of the new Government over the territory of the States which at that time had not ratified that instrument, and the possibility of a crisis was early removed by the successive ratifications by North Carolina (November, 1789), and by Rhode Island (May, 1790). Membership in the Union was further increased by the admission of Vermont (March, 1791), and of Kentucky (June, 1792). In Washington's first term executive departments were organized by acts of Congress, the Federal Judicial system was organized, in September, 1789, a national mint was established in Philadelphia, and a system of coinage devised, and in 1791 the first ten amendments to the Federal Constitution were formally adopted.
At the request of both Federalists and Republicans, Washington consented to serve a second term as President, and was unanimously reëlected. John Adams was also reëlected to the office of Vice-President, being opposed by George Clinton (q.v.), of New York, the Republican candidate. Washington's second term was one of much public turmoil and uneasiness, owing to the attitude of the two parties toward France and England, then at war. The Federalists expressed an open sympathy with England; the Republicans with France. The conduct of the French Minister to the United States, known as ‘Citizen’ Genet (q.v.), did much to increase the popular excitement. He openly violated the President's proclamation of neutrality, endeavored to fit out French cruisers in American ports, raised money and men for the service in France, and acted with such offensive and undisguised insolence toward Washington and his Cabinet that the Government demanded his recall. The turbulence resulting from his injudicious course, however, had inflamed party passions to such an extent that even Washington's calm and dignified policy did not escape the bitterest partisan denunciation. This increased in volume and intensity when the so-called Jay Treaty (q.v.) with England was laid before the Senate by the President. England's course had been regarded as arrogant and far from conciliatory. She had impressed American seamen, had refused, ostensibly because of the neglect of the United States to carry out certain provisions of the treaty of peace, to evacuate the posts in the Northwest Territory, and had largely excluded American commerce from the West India trade. The Jay Treaty failed to secure the assurances from England that many believed to be justly due; but it embodied the best that could then be obtained, and the President approved it. The aspersions now recklessly heaped upon Washington became virulent; he was threatened with impeachment, and even was accused of treason and of usurpation. Yet his action was justified by the revival of commerce that followed the ratification of the Jay Treaty.
The other noteworthy events of Washington's second administration were the fortunate and effective assertion of the authority of the Federal Government in the suppression of the so-called Whisky Insurrection (q.v.) in Pennsylvania (1794), the adoption of a plan for internal taxation (1795), the unsuccessful expeditions under Harmar and Saint Clair against the Western Indians in 1790 and 1791, the defeat of the Indians by Wayne at Fallen Timbers in 1794, the cession to the United States in the following year of 25,000 square miles of Indian lands, and the negotiation of a treaty with Spain in 1795, whereby the United States secured the free navigation of the Lower Mississippi, the right of deposit, for a limited period, at New Orleans, and a partially satisfactory settlement of the Florida boundary. The year 1793 was marked by the invention, by Eli Whitney, of the cotton gin, which was destined to bring about an industrial revolution in the South and profoundly to affect the question of slavery. In June, 1796, Tennessee, hitherto a part of North Carolina, was admitted to the Union as a new Commonwealth. On September 17th of the same year Washington delivered his historic “Farewell Address.” As he declined again to be a candidate, the two great parties waged an open warfare for the election of his successor. The Federalist candidate, John Adams, received 71 votes, and the Republican, Thomas Jefferson, 68 votes, and in accordance with the constitutional provisions then operative, John Adams became President, and Thomas Jefferson Vice-President.
III. Administration of John Adams (1797-1801). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Timothy Pickering, continued; John Marshall, Virginia, May 13, 1800. Secretary of the Treasury, Oliver Wolcott, continued; Samuel Dexter, Massachusetts, January 1, 1801. Secretary of War, James McHenry, continued; Samuel Dexter, May 13, 1800; Roger Griswold, Connecticut, February 3, 1801. Secretary of the Navy, George Cabot, Massachusetts, May 3, 1798; Benjamin Stoddert, Maryland, May 21, 1798. Attorney-General, Charles Lee, continued; Theophilus Parsons, Massachusetts, February 20, 1801. Postmaster-General, Joseph Habersham, continued. At first the prospects of the new Administration and of the Federalist Party seemed extremely bright. The insolent action of the French Directory, then at the head of affairs in France, in demanding of the American commissioners a bribe in return for a favorable hearing, inspired everywhere in the United States the most intense indignation. (See X Y Z Correspondence.) War seemed imminent; indeed, hostilities actually began (1799) on sea, and General Washington was again summoned to command the army, with Hamilton as the actual head until the outbreak of hostilities. But a change in the French Government made possible a reconciliation, and in 1800 a treaty removed the immediate cause of complaint.
Such popularity as the Government had secured by its firm attitude toward France was soon lost by the passage, in 1798, of the unwise ‘Alien and Sedition Acts’ (q.v.). These acts were generally felt to be opposed to those principles of the Constitution which assured the rights of individuals and of the States, and they brought the Government into great disrepute. Congress, however, was still largely controlled by the Federalists, and hence the Republicans were obliged to protest against the new enactments through the medium of the State Legislatures. Resolutions of protest drawn by Jefferson and Madison were passed by the Legislatures of Virginia and Kentucky, and became known as the ‘Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions' (q.v.). These resolutions expressed the extreme Anti-Federalist doctrine, and precipitated an immediate agitation against the obnoxious laws, which helped to cause the defeat of the Federalist Party in the Presidential election of 1800. During Adams's administration the seat of the government was changed, in 1800, from Philadelphia, which had been the temporary capital for ten years, to Washington, in the newly constituted District of Columbia, and John Marshall, who was destined to influence profoundly the constitutional law of the nation, became Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. In the election of 1800, 73 electoral votes were cast for Thomas Jefferson and the same number for Aaron Burr, also a Republican, while Adams had 65. There being thus no choice, the election was thrown in accordance with Article II. of the Constitution into the House of Representatives, each State having only a single vote. After balloting for six days the House of Representatives elected Jefferson, who received the votes of ten States, while four States voted for Burr, and two voted in blank. Thomas Jef- ferson was thus chosen President, and Aaron Burr Vice-President.
IV. and V. Administration of Thomas Jefferson(1801-09). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, James Madison, Virginia, March 5, 1801, Secretary of the Treasury, Samuel Dexter, continued; Albert Gallatin, Pennsylvania, May 14, 1801. Secretary of War, Henry Dearborn, Massachusetts, March 5, 1801. Secretary of Navy, Benjamin Stoddert, continued; Robert Smith, Maryland, July 15, 1801. Attorney-General, Levi Lincoln, Massachusetts, March 5, 1801; Robert Smith, Maryland, March 3, 1805; John Breckinridge, Kentucky, August 7, 1805; Cæsar A. Rodney, Pennsylvania, January 20, 1807. Postmaster-General, Joseph Habersham, continued; Gideon Granger, Connecticut, November 28, 1801.
The election of Jefferson marked the complete triumph of the Republicans. He made a number of removals from office without cause, although chiefly of those whom Adams had appointed in the last hours of his administration and hence known as ‘midnight appointments.’ (See Marbury vs. Madison.) Jefferson professed only to desire to maintain an equal distribution of offices between the parties, and to consider only an applicant's capability and honesty. He felt free, however, to join in undoing the work of Adams by aiding in the repeal of the law creating new judicial offices to which Federalists had been pointed, and also by countenancing an attack which was made on the Federalist judges through impeachment. (See Chase, Samuel.) He began his term of office with the extreme theories of the strict constructionists as his guide, as was shown by the steps which were promptly taken to bring about the abrogation of the system of internal revenue (April, 1802), and to reduce to five years the term of residence requisite for naturalization (April, 1802), as also by the repeal, in December, 1803, of the national bankruptcy law of 1800. Nevertheless, the force of circumstances finally led Jefferson to adopt and carry through measures that involved as liberal an interpretation of the Constitution as any that the Federalists had ever advanced. The first of these measures was the purchase from France in 1803 of Louisiana, which had recently been acquired by France from Spain. (See San Ildefonso, Treaty of; Louisiana Purchase.) The annexation of this territory determined permanently the control of the Mississippi, and accordingly was thoroughly approved in the trans-Alleghany regions; but there was immediately raised not only the question of the Government's power so to acquire territory, but also the question whether the Government had acted within its constitutional powers in concluding a treaty which guaranteed citizenship to former subjects of France, and there developed a vigorous though unavailing opposition to the purchase among the members of Congress from New England. The application of a characteristic Republican policy was, however, illustrated in the marked tendency to minimize the importance of the functions of the National Government, and to render unimportant such departments as those of war and the navy. The very material reduction of the national forces was accomplished without effective opposition in view of the improved financial condition which was supposed to be secured by such a course. Any such justification was soon overbalanced by the pressing need of an efficient navy occasioned by the war with Tripoli (1801-05), in which Preble and Decatur won laurels for the American flag. (See Barbary Powers, Wars with the.) In 1803 Ohio was admitted into the Union; and in December, 1803, Congress passed the Twelfth Amendment to the Constitution, which was ratified in 1804, providing that the electoral college should vote for Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates separately, (See Constitution.) In 1804 Jefferson was reëlected President, receiving all the electoral votes except those of Connecticut and Delaware and two of Maryland, which were cast for the Federalist, Charles C. Pinckney, of South Carolina. George Clinton (q.v.), of New York, was elected Vice-President.
Jefferson's second, administration began with overwhelming Republican majorities in both Houses of Congress. The Napoleonic wars had begun anew in 1803, and it was impossible for such a struggle not to affect materially the interests of the United States. The commerce of America was highly prosperous, her ships enjoying much of the carrying trade of Europe; but in May, 1806, England declared a blockade from Brest to the Elbe, and Bonaparte, in November, decreed the blockade of the coasts of the United Kingdom. (See Continental, System: Orders in Council.) The maritime rights of neutrals were not at that time clearly defined, and the Americans suffered at the hands of both belligerents, American vessels being seized and searched with great insolence and discourtesy for contraband of war and being searched also by the British for British subjects. The right of expatriation was not then recognized by England, and those suspected of having been born on British soil were, in accordance with the doctrine, ‘once a subject always a subject,’ impressed into the British naval service. The British frigate Leopard, meeting the American frigate Chesapeake, June 22, 1807, demanded four of her men, and on refusal fired into her, and the Chesapeake was forced to strike her flag, the incident creating intense excitement and resentment, and British ships being thenceforth forbidden to enter American harbors. See Chesapeake, The.
In December, 1807, a further step was taken in the famous Embargo Act (see Embargo), which forbade American vessels to leave for foreign ports, and foreign vessels to take cargoes into American ports. This measure, which was intended to punish England and France for their contempt of American rights upon the sea, almost destroyed the commerce of the United States, and was violently opposed by the Federalists, especially in New England and New York, where the shipping interest was strongest. During Jefferson's administration Aaron Burr attempted to carry out a filibustering scheme against Mexico, and in addition he was charged with an attempt at the dismemberment of the Union, and in 1807 was tried for treason at Richmond, Va., but was acquitted. (See Burr, Aaron.) Jefferson's administration was also marked by the Lewis and Clark expedition (q.v.) across the continent to the Pacific (1804-06); by the passage of a bill in 1806 for the construction of a national road from Cumberland, Md., to Ohio, the first important internal improvement measure (see Cumberland Road); the establishment of the United States Military Academy at West Point, and the successful introduction of steam navigation by Fulton. (See Steam Navigation.) Another important event of Jefferson's administration was the passage of an act of Congress in 1807 abolishing the slave trade from January 1, 1808.
Following the example of Washington, Jefferson declined to be a candidate for a third term, and in the election of 1808 James Madison, of Virginia, was elected President, and George Clinton, of New York, Vice-President. Charles C. Pinckney was again the Federalist candidate for President. In February, 1809, owing to the threatening attitude of the New England States, which seemed to menace the Government with secession, the Embargo was relaxed and the Non-Intercourse Act was substituted for it, repealing the provisions of the Embargo, except as against England and France.
VI. and VII. Administration of James Madison (1809-17). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Robert Smith, Maryland, March 6, 1809; James Monroe, Virginia, April 2, 1811. Secretary of the Treasury, Albert Gallatin, continued; George W. Campbell, Tennessee, February 9, 1814; A. J. Dallas, Pennsylvania, October 6, 1814; William H. Crawford, Georgia, October 22, 1810. Secretary of War, William Eustis, Massachusetts, March 7, 1809; John Armstrong, New York, January 13, 1813; James Monroe (acting), September 27, 1814; William H. Crawford. Georgia, August 1, 1815. Secretary of the Navy, Paul Hamilton, South Carolina, March 7, 1809; William Jones, Pennsylvania, January 12, 1813; B. W. Crowninshield, Massachusetts, December 19, 1814. Attorney-General, C. A. Rodney, continued; William Pinkney, Maryland, December 11, 1811; Richard Rush, Pennsylvania, February 10, 1814. Postmaster-General, Gideon Granger, continued; Return J. Meigs, Ohio, March 17, 1814.
The beginning of Madison's administration witnessed a further straining of relations between the United States and England. Though the acts of France had been, in the main, no less unjust and arrogant than those of England, she had never attempted the impressment of American seamen, which had been made easy for England by identity of language and by the fact that, in some cases, British deserters were actually found upon American ships. Moreover, the Republican Party, now in power, had been traditionally the friend of France. Hence, as time went on, England was especially singled out for American dislike, and this feeling increased when the West complained that British agents were exciting disaffection on the frontiers and intriguing with the Indians, color being given to this latter charge by the hostility of some of the Indians and Tecumseh's attempt to form an Indian confederation. See Tecumseh; Tippecanoe, Battle of.
In 1810 England and France each professed a readiness to repeal the decrees that had so hampered American commerce, if the other would do so first. France then revoked conditionally the Berlin and Milan decrees, and in 1812 revoked them unconditionally, dating the revocation back one year. Meanwhile, an aggressive element had risen to prominence in the councils of the Republican Party. Henry Clay, of Kentucky, was Speaker of the House, and John C. Calhoun, of South Carolina, on the floor of the House was the leader of the majority. Under the impulse of these two brilliant and impetuous spirits, the party in power became transformed into a war party. Acts were passed to enlist soldiers, to organize the militia, to enlarge the navy, and to prepare in every way for war. The adoption of a war policy was urged upon the President, who was himself reluctant to adopt it. England having refused to modify her policy toward neutrals, an embargo upon all American shipping was proclaimed for sixty days as a preliminary to the opening of hostilities; and on June 1st Madison sent a message to Congress in which, after reviewing the American grievances against England, he recommended a formal declaration of war. The chief grounds for this action, as given by Madison, were the impressment of American seamen, the extension of the right of search to United States war vessels, the ‘paper blockades’ established by the British Orders in Council, and the alleged efforts of Great Britain to persuade the Northwestern Indians to attack the Americans. On the 18th Congress formally declared war. Five days later, and before the declaration reached England, the British Government withdrew its objectionable Orders in Council, but although attempts were then made to restore peace, reconciliation at that time was impossible. The disparity in power between the United States and Great Britain at this time was enormous, and except that the latter was still engaged in her conflict with Napoleon, a declaration of war would have seemed little less than foolhardy. In 1810 the population of the United States was only about 7,250,000, while that of Great Britain was fully 18,500,000. Great Britain, moreover, had vastly superior resources at her disposal, was organized for war, while the United States was not, and, besides having a large and highly disciplined army, was the acknowledged mistress of the seas. In general, the war went against the Americans on land, though the British were decisively repulsed at New Orleans; and the warfare on sea demonstrated the superiority, vessel for vessel, of the American to the British navy. Gradually, however, by reason of her vastly larger fleet, Great Britain defeated the American vessels in detail or drove them under the shelter of forts. The American naval successes were, nevertheless, of such number and of such tactical importance as to add greatly to the standing of the United States as a naval power. Congress had voted to raise 25,000 enlisted soldiers, 50,000 volunteers, and 100,000 militia. General William Hull with 2000 men at Detroit invaded Canada, but on being met by a small force of British and Indians under General Brock, recrossed the river, and on August 16th surrendered at Detroit without resistance. A second invasion of Canada was made in October, 1812, near Niagara Falls, by General Van Rensselaer. One thousand American militia stormed the heights of Queenstown, and the British general, Brock, was killed, but reinforcements arriving, the heights were retaken, and the Americans were defeated with great loss, some of them surrendering. Some of the militia refused to cross into Canada, upon the ground that the Government had no right to send the militia across the frontier. The Federalist Party, opposed to the war, defended the doctrine, and General Van Rensselaer resigned in disgust. American disasters on the land were, however, compensated for by victories at sea. On August 10th the United States frigate Constitution (q.v.) captured the British frigate Guerrière; on October 18th the Wasp (American) took the Frolic (British); on October 25th the United States captured the Macedonian; and on December 29th the Constitution took the Java. The Americans, in most cases, had the larger ships and heavier ordnance; but the immense disparity in the losses showed also superior seamanship and gunnery. American privateers, furthermore, took during the war, it is estimated, 300 British vessels and 3000 prisoners.
In May, 1812, Madison had been renominated for the Presidency, with Elbridge Gerry, of Massachusetts, as the Republican candidate for Vice-President. In the ensuing election Madison defeated De Witt Clinton by an electoral vote of 127 to 89, while Gerry defeated Jared Ingersoll by an electoral vote of 131 to 86.
In April, 1813, an American army of 1700 men under General Henry Dearborn captured York, now Toronto, and Dearborn having been relieved, Generals Wilkinson and Hampton undertook to capture Montreal, but met with no success. An attempt of the British general, Prevost, on Sackett's Harbor in May was repulsed; the British squadron on Lake Erie, consisting of 6 vessels carrying 63 guns, was captured on September 10, 1813, by Commodore Perry at the head of an American flotilla of 9 vessels with 54 guns (see Erie, Battle of Lake); and this latter success enabled General Harrison to invade Canada, where he defeated General Proctor in the battle of the Thames (October 5th), in which the great Indian warrior-chief Tecumseh was killed. During the same period General Andrew Jackson in Alabama and Georgia defeated the Creek Indians, who had been incited to make war upon the frontier settlements. In the summer of 1814 General Jacob Brown, with Colonel Winfield Scott as his second in command, crossed to the Canadian side, captured Fort Erie (q.v.) on July 2d, and defeated General Riall at Chippewa on July 5th. On July 25th the indecisive battle of Lundy's Lane was fought, the Americans being under the immediate command of Scott; and the American forces then withdrew to Fort Erie, where they were besieged. (See Fort Erie.) General Wilkinson also invaded Canada along the Sorel River, but was easily repulsed. A British invasion, by Lake Champlain, under Prevost, with 14,000 men and a flotilla on the lake, ended disastrously. On September 11th the flotilla was signally defeated in the harbor of Plattsburg by an American squadron under Commodore McDonough, while the army was repulsed on shore, and retreated with heavy loss. In August a British fleet ascended Chesapeake Bay and landed troops which, after dispersing with little difficulty a force of American militia at Bladensburg (q.v.), entered Washington and burned the Government buildings. A subsequent attack on Baltimore was unsuccessful. New York, New London, and Boston were blockaded, and a large expedition was sent against Mobile and New Orleans.
On January 8, 1815. General Pakenham attacked New Orleans, but his army was repulsed with great loss by General Jackson at the head of an inferior militia force. (See New Orleans, Battle of.) This action was fought two weeks after peace had been concluded by the commissioners of England and the United States. From the middle of 1813 the fortunes of war alternated on the sea. On June 1, 1813, the American frigate Chesapeake was taken by the Shannon and the American sloop Argus by the Pelican on August 14th; the British brig Boxer was captured by the Enterprise on September 5, 1813; the American frigate Essex, after a memorable career under Porter, surrendered to the Phœbe and Cherub on March 28, 1814; the British brig Epervier was captured by the Peacock on April 29, 1814; the British sloop Avon was sunk by the Wasp on September 8, 1814; on January 15, 1815, after the conclusion of peace, the American frigate President was taken by the British; and on February 20th the American frigate Constitution captured the Cyane and the Levant.
In December, 1814, the Federalists of New England held a convention at Hartford in opposition to the war and the Administration. (See Hartford Convention.) The treaty of peace concluded with England at Ghent on December 24, 1814 (see Ghent, Treaty of), was announced in February, 1815. The terms did not include any affirmative withdrawal of England's claim to search American ships, but nevertheless all parties in the country approved it.
In 1815 Commodore Decatur commanded an expedition against the Algerians, whose corsairs had preyed on American commerce in the Mediterranean, and dictated terms to Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli. See Barbary Powers, Wars with the.
With the end of the War of 1812 came the virtual extinction of the Federalist Party, whose unpatriotic course during the struggle had made its name odious to the nation as a whole. It ceased, thereafter, to make itself felt in national affairs (see Federalists). and for a time the country had the singular fortune to find all its citizens of one party, with principles derived from both the old party creeds. Perhaps the most marked influence left by the Federalists upon the political tenets of their opponents, and upon the popular mind, was to be found in the now very general recognition of the broad powers of the Central Government. This national idea had sustained the Republicans in the more liberal view which the war had compelled them to take of the inherent powers of the Federal Government. The noticeable effect of the war period in strengthening the nationalist tendency was immediately illustrated by the granting of the charter of the second United States Bank (see Bank, Banking) in 1816; by the passage of the first really protective tariff, under the guidance of Dallas, in the same year (see Tariff); and by the activity of Congress in attempting to appropriate large amounts of the national funds for public roads and similar improvements of a local character, an important bill for this purpose, passed by Congress in 1816, being, however, vetoed by Madison on the ground of its unconstitutionality. The tendency was also emphasized by judicial decisions (as in Martin vs. Hunter's Lessee, 1816, and Cohens vs. Virginia, 1821), establishing the supremacy of the Federal Judicial power over that of the States, while in McCulloch vs. Maryland, in 1819, Chief Justice Marshall introduced into the law of the land his advanced views as to the relation of the States to the Union and elaborated his theory of the supreme and exclusive authority of the latter. For the moment, the close of Madison's administration found the country, as a whole, scarcely divided by party differences, so that the Presidential election of November, 1816, resulted in the choice of James Monroe, of Virginia, as President, and Daniel D. Tompkins, of New York, as Vice-President, these candidates receiving 183 electoral votes, while the votes of only three States—Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Delaware—were cast for the Federalist candidate, Rufus King, of New York. The Federalists made no formal nomination for the office of Vice-President. In Madison's first administration Louisiana was admitted into the Union (1812), and in the second Indiana (1816).
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
VIII. and IX. Administration of James Monroe (1817-25). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, John Quincy Adams, Massachusetts, March 5, 1817. Secretary of the Treasury, William H. Crawford, continued; Secretary of War, George Graham, Virginia, April 7, 1817; John C. Calhoun, South Carolina, October 8, 1817. Secretary of the Navy, B. W. Crowninshield, continued; Smith Thompson, New York, November 9, 1818; John Rogers, Massachusetts, September 1, 1823; Samuel L. Southard, New Jersey, September 16, 1823. Attorney-General, Richard Rush, continued; William Wirt, Virginia, November 13, 1817. Postmaster-General, R. J. Meigs, continued; John McLean, Ohio, June 26, 1823.
The period of Monroe's term of office has been commonly known in American political history as the Era of Good Feeling. Party questions were in abeyance, and when, in May, 1817, the President began an extended tour in the Northern and Western States, the warmth of the welcome given him by all classes of the people showed that the nation was contented, prosperous, and loyal. In accordance with the recommendations of the President's first message, the slightly protective tariff of 1816 was continued for seven years. (See Tariff.) On December 10, 1817, Mississippi was admitted to the Union. In 1818 (December 3d) Illinois became a State, and on February 22, 1819, the United States purchased from Spain for $5,000,000 the territory of east and west Florida (in which region hostilities had recently been carried on against the Seminole Indians), together with all the claims which Spain might have to territory as far west as the Pacific, north of the forty-second parallel, including, of course, the Oregon country; while the United States relinquished all claim to the province west of the Sabine River (Texas). This treaty, however, was not formally ratified until 1821. Early in 1818 the people of the Territory of Missouri (q.v.), which had been included in the Louisiana Purchase, applied for admission to the Union. A bill providing for such admission was framed, but amended in the House in such a way as to forbid slavery in the new State. As so amended, the bill passed the House by the votes of the members from the free States, but was defeated in the Senate. This action brought the question of slavery prominently into the sphere of national politics, never again to disappear until the extinction of that institution as the result of the war between the States in 1861-65. In the Congress which met in December, 1819, the question of the admission of Missouri was again brought forward, coupled with a proposition for the admission of Maine, which had hitherto been a part of Massachusetts. An arrangement known as the ‘Missouri Compromise’ (q.v.) was effected (1820) by the action of Clay and the conservative members of both sections, which provided that the admission of Maine and Missouri should be voted upon separately, that slavery should be permitted in Missouri, but that slavery should forever be prohibited in territories acquired from France north of the parallel of 36° 30′ except Missouri. Maine was admitted in 1820 and Missouri in 1821, the latter step having been delayed by a vigorous debate in Congress occasioned by a clause in the proposed State Constitution which prohibited the settling of free negroes in the State (see Missouri Compromise), the Missouri Legislature finally pledging the State not to shut out any negro citizen of another State. At the same session of Congress, Alabama was admitted to the Union (December 14, 1819). In 1820 the Presidential campaign resulted in the reëlection of Monroe and Tompkins, Monroe receiving all the electoral votes but one, which was cast for John Quincy Adams.
In 1821 the strict constructionists among the Republicans defeated bills looking to a national canal system and a higher tariff, and the President vetoed a bill for the outlay of national funds upon the Cumberland Road (q.v.). In December, 1823, in his annual message to Congress, Monroe promulgated the famous declaration that has since been known as the Monroe Doctrine (q.v.). In 1824, the nationalist policy being then followed by a majority in both Houses, there was adopted a more strictly protective tariff, framed with the design of excluding foreign competitors from American markets (see Tariff), while a bill for making survey's for a national canal system also became law. The political issues arising out of the founding of a new government as well as out of international complications had now lost their importance, and attention was becoming centred on internal matters, as to none of which were sectional or factional issues as yet clearly drawn, although the sudden introduction of the slavery question into Congressional politics was to acquire more significance than any other circumstance of the administration. However, as there was now only one political party, the Republican, the Presidental election of 1824 was largely a personal and factional contest. When the electoral votes were counted, 99 were for Andrew Jackson, of Tennessee; 84 for John Quincy Adams, of Massachusetts; 41 for William H. Crawford, of Georgia; and 37 for Henry Clay, of Kentucky; there being thus no choice for President, and the decision being thrown into the House of Representatives, where, by a coalition of the supporters of Clay and Adams, the latter was finally chosen, Adams receiving the votes of thirteen States, while Jackson had those of seven, and Crawford those of four. The electors had chosen John C. Calhoun, of South Carolina, to be Vice-President, by a vote of 182 to 78 for various other candidates.
X. Administration of John Quincy Adams (1825-29). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Henry Clay, Kentucky, March 7, 1825. Secretary of the Treasury, Richard Rush, Pennsylvania, March 7, 1825. Secretary of War, James Barbour, Virginia, March 7, 1825; Peter B. Porter, New York, May 26, 1828. Secretary of the Navy, S. L. Southard, continued. Attorney-General, William Wirt, continued. Postmaster-General, John McLean, continued.
A new division of the American people into parties dates from the beginning of this administration. The party previously known as Republican or Democratic-Republican soon took the name of Democratic (see Democratic Party), while the Clay and Adams factions, which had been identified with the doctrine of loose construction, after taking the name of National Republican, changed it eventually to that of Whig (see Whig Party), by which the party continued to be known for some twenty-five years. The basis for the new party division lay largely in the factional differences between the followers of Adams and those of Jackson, and one result of this was the prolonged controversy throughout the administration of Adams and the development of especially bitter relations between the factions of the leaders, which continued throughout the two terms of Jackson. Owing to the determined obstruction which was made by the opponents of the Administration, few of its measures were carried, so that the net results of the four years' work were comparatively slight, and the period became distinguished chiefly by the partisan conflicts preliminary to the overthrow of the Adams faction in 1828.
During the suspension of commerce by the War of 1812, huge amounts of capital were withdrawn from trading ventures and diverted to manufacturing establishments, with the result that gradually New England and the Northern coast States ceased to be free-trade regions, and became desirous of a protective tariff policy, while the South arrayed itself on the side of free trade. Upon the return of peace, the new manufacturing establishments were not firmly enough established to compete successfully with the foreign manufacturers, and accordingly in 1824 an act was passed for the purpose of giving the control of the home market to the wool manufacturers. This failing of its purpose, a national convention of protectionists at Harrisburg, Pa., in July, 1827, advocated a strongly protective policy, and in 1828 a tariff framed in accordance with these views became law. The South denounced this measure as being sectional legislation, intended to benefit New England and the Middle States at the expense of the South, and the doctrine of Nullification (q.v.), which had been promulgated in the Kentucky Resolutions of 1798 (see Virginia and Kentucky Resolutions), and had been revived in South Carolina in 1827, began to be widely accepted in the Southern States. Adams's administration was further marked by the expenditure by the National Government of some $14,000,000 for ‘internal improvements;’ by the rapid immigration to the West, greatly promoted by the opening of the Erie Canal; and by the debates in Congress over the advisability of sending delegates to the Panama Congress (q.v.). In 1828 the Democratic candidate for President, Andrew Jackson, of Tennessee, received 178 electoral votes to 83 cast for John Quincy Adams; and John C. Calhoun was reëlected Vice-President, having 171 electoral votes. The accession of President Jackson was the beginning of a new era in political practice. A radical change was typified by the discontent with the existing methods, which led to the more direct participation of the public at large in political affairs through the rise of the nominating convention and through the practice of choosing Presidential electors by popular vote. This marked departure toward practical democracy was emphasized by the striking influence which the new Western States and their ideals and standards of life now secured over national politics.
XI. and XII. Administration of Andrew Jackson (1829-37). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Martin Van Buren, New York, March 6, 1829; Edward Livingston, Louisiana, May 24, 1831; Louis McLane, Delaware, May 29, 1833; John Forsyth, Georgia, June 27, 1834. Secretary of the Treasury, Samuel D. Ingham, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1829; Louis McLane, Delaware, August 8, 1831; William J. Duane, Pennsvlvania, May 29, 1833; Roger B. Taney, Maryland, September 23, 1833; Levi Woodbury, New Hampshire, June 27, 1834. Secretary of War, John H. Eaton, Tennessee, March 9, 1829; Lewis Cass, Michigan, August 1, 1831; Benjamin F. Butler, New York, March 3, 1837. Secretary of the Navy, John Branch, North Carolina, March 9, 1829; Levi Woodbury, New Hampshire, May 23, 1831; Mahlon Dickerson. New Jersey, June 30, 1834. Attorney-General, John M. Berrien, Georgia, March 9, 1829; Roger B. Taney, Maryland, July 20, 1831; Benjamin F. Butler, New York, November 15, 1833. Postmaster-General, William T. Barry, Kentucky, March 9, 1829; Amos Kendall, Kentucky, May 1, 1835.
The bold, decisive, and impetuous character of President Jackson was shown in a general removal of those, down to small postmasters and tidewaiters, who had held office under the late Administration, and in the appointment of his own partisans. The administration was distinctively one of conflict, the chief issues being the United States Bank and the tariff; and Jackson was swayed throughout, to a considerable extent, by the influence of a group of friends, who became known collectively as the ‘Kitchen Cabinet’ (q.v.). South Carolina declared the high protective tariff acts of 1828 and 1832 to be unconstitutional, and therefore null and void, and threatened to withdraw from the Union if an attempt were made to collect the duties on foreign importations. The President prepared to execute the laws by force; Calhoun resigned his office of Vice-President, and in the Senate, to which he was promptly sent, asserted the doctrine of State rights, including the right of secession. (See Nullification.) A collision seemed imminent, but the affair was settled by a compromise bill, introduced by Henry Clay, providing for a gradual reduction of duties until 1842, when they were not to exceed 20 per cent. ad valorem. As an incident of this controversy, though nominally occasioned by a resolution calling for an inquiry into the sale of Government lands, occurred the famous debate (January, 1830) in the Senate between Daniel Webster (q.v.), of Massachusetts, and Robert Y. Hayne (q.v.), of South Carolina, in which the two opposing views regarding slavery, nullification, and the true interpretation of the Constitution were advocated and discussed with such eloquence, learning, and enthusiasm as to make the debate a landmark in the constitutional development of the United States. The same period witnessed the rise of the Anti-Masonic Party, based on opposition to Free Masonry and to secret societies generally. See Morgan, William; Anti-Masons.
The President was a pronounced opponent of the national bank, the existence of which under its second charter was to continue to 1836. Jackson early raised the issue of its constitutionality, whereupon the friends of the bank introduced and carried through both Houses a bill for its continuation. This was vetoed, and its supporters were unable to carry the bill over the veto. The question, however, was made the chief issue in the campaign of 1832, in which the decisive triumph of Jackson was taken by him to be a vindication of his policy and an assurance that he represented the popular will more accurately even than did Congress. The result was still further to strengthen his position and to increase his influence over Congressional action. In the election of 1832 he received 219 electoral votes, as against only 49 for Henry Clay, 11 for John Floyd, of Virginia, and 7 for William Wirt, of Virginia. Martin Van Buren was elected Vice-President, receiving 189 votes.
The Cherokee Indians in Georgia, who had attained to a certain degree of civilization, appealed to the President for protection against the seizure of their lands by the State; but they were told that he “had no power to op- pose the exercise of the sovereignty of any State over all who may be within its limits;” and the Indians were obliged to remove to the territory set apart for them west of the Mississippi. In 1832, in the West, trouble with the Indians had culminated in the Black Hawk War (see Black Hawk), and now in 1835 the Seminole War broke out in Florida, and a tribe of Indians, insignificant in numbers, under the crafty leadership of Osceola (q.v.), kept up hostilities for years, at a cost to the United States of several thousands of men and some $50,000,000. The removal in 1835 by order of the President of the Government deposits from the United States Bank to certain State banks, led to the weakening of the bank, and, after some years, to the adoption of Van Buren's plan of an independent treasury. Later the Senate, which was controlled by the Whigs, as Jackson's opponents now styled themselves, led by Henry Clay, took the extraordinary step of passing formal resolutions of censure of the President for his order removing the Government deposits from the bank. The President protested against the resolution, but the protest was not allowed by the Senate to appear upon the record. The warfare between the President and Senate continued through the next two years, the latter frequently rejecting the nominations made by the Executive. In 1837, however, largely under the influence of Benton, the Senate, which had at last become Democratic, voted to expunge from its records the resolutions of censure already mentioned. In 1835 (December 7th) the President announced to Congress that the national debt would soon be paid, and that provision should be made for the surplus revenue which was anticipated. In June, 1836, a bill was passed providing that after January 1, 1837, any surplus exceeding the sum of $5,000,000 should be divided among the States as a loan, subject to a recall by Congress; and in accordance with this act, some $28,000,000 was divided in 1837, which has never been recalled. In July, 1836, the President caused the famous Specie Circular to be issued, which ordered the agents of the Government to receive only gold or silver in payment for public lands.
At this time Texas, which had been colonized by Americans, was endeavoring to free itself from Mexican control and to establish its independence. The South saw in the movement a prospect of annexing this large territory to the United States, and of carving from it new slave States whose votes in the Senate would counterbalance those of the new free States. Many manifestations of sympathy with the Texans were therefore made, and a resolution recognizing the independence of Texas passed the Senate, but not the House. A new era in the slavery controversy had been inaugurated with the establishment of the Liberator by Garrison in 1831. The New England Anti-Slavery Society was organized in 1832. and the American Anti-Slavery Society at Philadelphia in 1833. (See Slavery; Garrison, W. L.; Phillips, Wendell; Abolitionists; Gag Rules.) Arkansas (June 15, 1836) and Michigan (January 26, 1837) were admitted to the Union. The administration of Jackson was further marked by the political acerbities growing partly out of the Peggy O'Neill affair (see Eaton, Margaret), and leading to the reorganization of the Cabinet, by the treaty with France settling the spoliation claims and the treaty with England securing unrestricted direct trade with the British West Indies, by the adoption on a large scale by Jackson of the ‘spoils system,’ and by the introduction of railroads. The election of 1836 resulted in the success again of the Democratic Party, whose candidate for President, Martin Van Buren, of New York, received 170 electoral votes, against 73 for William Henry Harrison, of Ohio, and 51 scattering. No candidate for Vice-President received a clear majority, and so the Senate elected Richard M. Johnson (q.v.), of Kentucky.
XIII. Administration of Martin Van Buren (1837-41). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, John Forsyth, continued. Secretary of the Treasury, Levi Woodbury, continued. Secretary of War, Joel R. Poinsett, South Carolina, March 7, 1837. Secretary of the Navy, Mahlon Dickerson, continued; James K. Paulding, New York, June 25, 1838. Attorney-General, Benjamin F. Butler, continued; Felix Grundy, Tennessee, July 5, 1838; Henry D. Gilpin, Pennsylvania, January 11, 1840. Postmaster-General, Amos Kendall, continued; John M. Niles, Connecticut, May 19, 1840.
Van Buren, in accordance with his pledges, carried out and perpetuated the policy of his predecessor. The new Administration was unfortunate in its beginnings. A financial disaster, such as had not until then been known in the United States, swept over the country in 1837. A general suspension of specie payments occurred; many banks suspended altogether, and innumerable corporations and individuals were ruined. Congress authorized the issue of $10,000,000 in treasury notes, and Jackson's Specie Circular was revoked. Van Buren's administration was marked by the establishment of the independent treasury system (reëstablished in 1846), by a renewal of hostilities against the Seminole Indians, and by the establishment of regular steamship communication with Europe. The Democrats with difficulty retained control of the House of Representatives, and through such methods as to decrease public confidence in the party leaders. This, together with the prevalent depression in business, weakened the dominant party in the country at large, so that in the campaign of 1840 the candidacy of the Whig nominee, General William Henry Harrison (q.v.), of Ohio, was supported with an enthusiasm such as no subsequent political campaign has ever witnessed. It has become known as the ‘Log Cabin Campaign’ and the ‘Hard Cider Campaign,’ from the prevalent symbols of the homely and simple frontier life of General Harrison. The ‘Liberty Party’ (q.v.) also made nominations, their candidates being James G. Birney (q.v.), of New York, for President, and Francis Lemoyne, of Pennsylvania, for Vice-President. The Democrats renominated Van Buren, but the convention did not agree upon the choice of a candidate for the Vice-Presidency. General Harrison received 234 electoral votes, to 60 for Van Buren; and for Vice-President the Whig, John Tyler, of Virginia, received 234, against 48 for R. M. Johnson and 12 scattering.
XIV. Administration of William Henry Harrison (1841) and of John Tyler (1841-45). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Daniel Webster, Massachusetts, March 5, 1841; Hugh S. Legaré, South Carolina, May 9, 1843; A. P. Upshur, Virginia, July 24, 1843; John C. Calhoun, South Carolina, March 6, 1844. Secretary of the Treasury, Thomas Ewing; Ohio, March 5, 1841; Walter Forward, Pennsylvania, September 13, 1841; John C. Spencer, New York, March 3, 1843; George M. Bibb, Kentucky, June 15, 1844. Secretary of War, John Bell, Tennessee, March 5, 1841; John McLean, Ohio, September 13, 1841; John C. Spencer, New York, October 12, 1841; James M. Porter, Pennsylvania, March 8, 1843; William Wilkins. Pennsylvania, February 15, 1844. Secretary of the Navy, G. E. Badger, North Carolina, March 5, 1841; A. P. Upshur, Virginia, September 13, 1841; David Henshaw, Massachusetts, July 24, 1843; T. W. Gilmer, Virginia, February 15, 1844; John Y. Mason, Virginia, March 14, 1844. Attorney-General, John J. Crittenden, Kentucky, March 5, 1841; Hugh S. Legaré, South Carolina, September 13, 1841; John Nelson, Maryland, July 1, 1843. Postmaster-General, Francis Granger, New York, March 6, 1841; Charles A. Wickliffe, Kentucky, September 13, 1841.
Two weeks after his inauguration, President Harrison issued a proclamation calling an extra session of Congress to consider the financial distress prevailing throughout the country and other questions that beset the Government. The extra session was called for May 31st, but on April 4th the President died after a short illness. The new President, John Tyler, retained for a few months his predecessor's Cabinet. When Congress met in accordance with General Harrison's call of March 17th, the Whigs, who had a majority in both Houses, began to carry out the changes to which their party had pledged itself in the campaign of the preceding year. A bill was passed for the incorporation of a new United States Bank, to be called the ‘Fiscal Bank of the United States,’ planned somewhat after the model of that which had been so vigorously attacked by President Jackson. To the consternation of the Whigs, the new President on August 16th vetoed it as being unconstitutional, since it provided for the establishment of branches of the bank in the various States without securing the prior consent of these States. The leading members of the party then conferred with President Tyler and asked him to suggest the provisions of a bill that he would be willing to accept. He agreed to do so, yet after the bill framed largely in accordance with his own ideas had passed the two Houses (September 3d) it promptly met the fate of the former act. It now became evident that the President was at heart a Democrat, and that his political principles would prevent him from acting cordially with the party that had elected him to office. The indignation and chagrin of the Whigs was unbounded. The entire Cabinet with one exception immediately resigned, Webster remaining in the State Department until pending negotiations with England had been completed. On September 11th the leaders of the Whig Party issued a manifesto ‘reading’ the President out of the party, and holding him responsible for the failure to effect the reforms that had been promised. President Tyler immediately filled the places in his Cabinet with conservative politicians, and having been cut off from political affiliation with his own party, turned to the Democrats for support.
During Tyler's administration the relations between the United States and Great Britain became very strained. In the course of an insurrection in Canada in 1837 a party of supporters of the Canadian Government had crossed over to the American territory and destroyed a vessel, the Caroline, owned by the friends of the insurgents. In the affair one American had been killed. In 1840 one Alexander McLeod, who had come to New York State and boasted of having taken part in the destruction of the Caroline, was arrested and indicted for murder. England protested vigorously and serious international complications for a time seemed imminent. (See Caroline.) Again, in October, 1841, the British freed most of the slaves aboard an American vessel, the Creole, which had been seized by them and carried into a port in the Bahamas. (See Creole Case.) Thus each nation had a grievance against the other, and such ill feeling resulted that war was feared.
Fortunately, Webster, Tyler's Secretary of State, was liked and respected by English statesmen, and upon the reorganization of the Cabinet he retained his office until the pending negotiations were concluded. In 1842 Lord Ashburton was sent out from England to negotiate a treaty, with particular reference to adjusting the boundary between Canada and the Northeastern States. The boundary question was settled by a compromise, though Great Britain gave up the larger and more valuable share of the disputed territory. Two other points of importance were settled by this treaty. One was the agreement of the two governments looking to the suppression of the slave trade. The other was the provision for mutual surrender of criminals. The treaty was concluded on August 9, 1842, and was proclaimed on November 10th. See Northeast Boundary Dispute; Webster-Ashburton Treaty.
In 1843 the Government arranged a treaty with the new Republic of Texas (q.v.), providing for the future annexation of that country to the United States. The Senate rejected this treaty by a vote of 35 to 16, seven Democrats voting with the Whigs for rejection. The problem of the future relations with Texas became still more critical in national politics, and its immediate importance was increased by the strong desire for annexation among the Southern leaders. To maintain the status quo, the annexation of Texas became an actual necessity to the interests of the South; for should the free States ultimately acquire a dominant power in the Senate, as they had already done in the House, the time might come when the existence of slavery would be imperiled. The possibility of this was kept continually before the Southern mind by the increasing activity in the North of the Liberty Party (q.v.), which in 1843 held a national convention at Buffalo and there put forth a series of resolutions denouncing slavery, and calling on the free States to pass penal laws to prevent the return of fugitive slaves, and which again nominated James G. Birney for the Presidency. The Whigs at their convention held at Baltimore in May, 1844, nominated Henry Clay, of Kentucky, with Theodore Frelinghuysen, of New York, as the candidate for Vice-President. The Democratic convention, in the same month, nominated James K. Polk, of Tennessee, and George M. Dallas, of Pennsylvania, and adopted a platform calling for the ‘reannexation of Texas’ and the ‘reoccupation of Oregon.’ The position of Clay as to the annexation of Texas was so equivocal as to arouse the suspicion of many Northerners, while the position of the Democrats on the Oregon question helped them in the Northwestern States. The election resulted in the choice of Polk and Dallas after a very close contest in which the Democrats succeeded only by the fact that several thousand votes in New York were cast for the anti-slavery ticket.
At the next session of Congress a joint resolution for the annexation of Texas was passed early in 1845 by both Houses and approved on March 1st by the President. It renewed the features of the Missouri Compromise as regards the Texan territory north of the compromise line, and as to the territory south of that line the question of slavery was left to the decision of the inhabitants of the States to be formed out of Texas.
Tyler's administration was marked by the ‘Dorr Rebellion’ in Rhode Island (see Dorr, Thomas W.; Rhode Island), by anti-rent disturbances in New York (see Anti-Rentism), and by the construction under the direction of S. F. B. Morse (q.v.) of the first successful long-distance telegraph line (1844).
XV. Administration of James K. Polk (1845-49). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, James Buchanan, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1845. Secretary of the Treasury, Robert J. Walker, Mississippi, March 6, 1845. Secretary of War, William L. Marcy, New York, March 6, 1845. Secretary of the Navy, George Bancroft, Massachusetts, March 10, 1845; John Y. Mason, Virginia, September 9, 1846. Attorney-General, John Y. Mason. Virginia, March 5, 1845; Nathan Clifford, Maine, October 17, 1846. Postmaster-General, Cave Johnson, Tennessee, March 6, 1845.
Soon after the beginning of Polk's administration United States troops under General Taylor were sent across the Nueces River to Corpus Christi, in territory then in dispute between the United States and Mexico, the United States claiming the Rio Grande as the boundary of Texas, and Mexico claiming the Nueces. In the meantime, both the Texan Congress (on June 18, 1845) and a convention of the people (on July 4th) had ratified the act of annexation, and on December 29th Texas formally entered the Union. Up to this date Mexico, being distracted by revolutions, had simply protested against the action of the United States and had recalled her Minister from Washington; but in the spring of 1846 the further advance of General Taylor toward the Rio Grande brought United States troops into conflict with the Mexicans, a small engagement taking place on April 24th. The Mexicans were then defeated at Palo Alto on May 8th, and on the following day at Resaca de la Palma. On May 11, 1846, news of the hostilities on April 24th having reached Washington, the President olficially informed Congress of the occurrence and asked that war be declared. Both Houses responded to the message and to the awakened war spirit of the country by passing a bill (on May 13th) whose preamble began as follows: “Whereas, by the act of Mexico, a state of war exists between that Government and the United States”—a statement that provoked much criticism from the opponents of the Administration, as false, in view of the fact that hostilities had been precipitated by the military occupation of territory claimed by Mexico. The bill appropriated $10,000,000 for the prosecution of the war, and under it enlistment was actively begun. Volunteers to the number of 50,000 men were authorized. On May 23d Mexico formally declared war upon the United States. Whatever view one might take of the political aspect of the war, the brilliant series of victories aroused widespread enthusiasm and pride; as against forces that outnumbered them, sometimes four to one and not inferior in training, in a hostile country, and against formidable obstacles, both natural and artificial, the troops of Taylor and Scott won successive triumphs by the most splendid courage and the most stubborn fighting. For a detailed account, see Mexican War.
On February 2, 1848, peace was signed at Guadalupe Hidalgo (q.v.). Mexico resigned her claim to Texas, agreeing to the Rio Grande as the boundary, and also ceded New Mexico and Upper California to the United States for a payment of $15,000,000, the completion being thus attained of that great westward movement which had been going on since the Revolution.
Other important events of Polk's administration were the treaty with England (June 15, 1846) by which the long-disputed question of the northwest boundary was settled (see Northwest Boundary Dispute; Oregon); the so-called ‘Tariff of 1846’ (see Tariff), which limited its purpose to the collection of revenues alone, without protection to native industries; the reënactment (1846) of the Independent Treasury Act; the introduction of the Wilmot Proviso (q.v.); the formation of the Free-Soil Party; the admission of Iowa (December 28, 1846); the establishment of the new Territory of Oregon without slavery, and the admission of Wisconsin (May 29, 1848). It was during Polk's term also that in 1848 gold was discovered in California, that the sewing machine was patented (1846) by Elias Howe, and that the use of anæsthetics was introduced in surgery. It was at this time that the great flood of Irish immigration consequent upon the potato famine of 1846 began.
The opposing candidates at the Presidential election of 1848 were Lewis Cass (q.v.), of Michigan, and William O. Butler, of Kentucky, Democrats, against General Zachary Taylor, of Louisiana, and Millard Fillmore, of New York, Whigs, the newly-organized Free-Soil Party (q.v.) nominating Martin Van Buren, of New York, and Charles Francis Adams, of Massachusetts. Taylor and Fillmore received 163 electoral votes, as against 127 cast for Cass and Butler, the Democratic vote being reduced by the support given by the Barnburners (q.v.) in New York to Van Buren.
XVI. Administration of Zachary Taylor (1849-50) and of Millard Fillmore (1850-53). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, John M. Clayton, Delaware, March 7, 1849; Daniel Webster, Massachusetts, December 6, 1852. Secretary of the Treasury, W. M. Meredith, Pennsylvania, March 8, 1849; Thomas Corvrin, Ohio, July 23, 1850. Secretary of War, George W. Crawford, Georgia, March 8, 1849; Winfield Scott (ad interim), July 23, 1850; Charles M. Conrad, Louisiana, August 15, 1850. Secretary of the Navy, William B. Preston, Virginia, March 8, 1849); William A. Graham, North Carolina, July 22, 1850; J. P. Kennedy, Maryland, July 22, 1852. Secretary of the Interior, Thomas H. Ewing, Ohio, March 8, 1849; A. H. H. Stuart, Virginia, September 12, 1850. Attorney-General, Reverdy Johnson, Maryland, March 8, 1849; John J. Crittenden, Kentucky, July 22, 1850. Postmaster-General, Jacob Collamer, Vermont, March 8, 1849; Nathan K. Hall, New York, July 23, 1850; S. D. Hubbard, Connecticut, August 31, 1852.
The course of American political history from the beginning of this administration down to the Civil War is marked by a gradual disintegration of the old Whig Party (q.v.). the increase in importance of the free-soil movement, culminating in the formation of the Republican Party, and the development of the Democratic Party into an organization whose foremost object, in so far as it was under the control of the Southern wing, was the maintenance of slavery and the perpetuation of the political power in the slave States. The increase of territory out of which new States might be created made the South anxious to prevent these new States from inhibiting slavery, as would probably be done in some of them, especially in California, if the question were left to the inhabitants. The contest began actively in 1846, while the acquisition of the land in question was still doubtful. In that year David Wilmot, a Representative from Pennsylvania, brought forward a resolution providing that slavery should be excluded from all territories that might be acquired from Mexico. This, commonly called the ‘Wilmot Proviso,’ was carried in the House of Representatives, but was defeated in the Senate. (See Wilmot Proviso.) So fierce did the strife become that many of the most thoughtful statesmen began to fear secession or civil war. In this crisis Clay, now a man of seventy-two and in broken health, came forward in 1850 as a peacemaker. Like Webster, who now vigorously supported him, Clay had always held a moderate position between the two extreme parties in the slavery controversy. His proposal was that no legislation concerning slavery in California, about to be admitted as a State, and in the new Territories should be enacted by Congress. He also proposed that the slave trade should be abolished in the District of Columbia, but that a stricter law for the rendition of fugitive slaves should be enacted. In September, 1850, Clay's scheme, with important changes, was put into effect by Congress by the enactment of the so-called ‘Compromise Measures of 1850.’ The passage, however, of the new Fugitive Slave Law excited at the North feelings of repugnance and disgust; and several of the State Legislatures even passed laws, commonly known as ‘Personal Liberty Laws,’ intended especially for the protection of negroes. (See Compromise Measures of 1850; Fugitive Slave Law.) Such incidents as the rescue of the negro named ‘Jerry’ at Syracuse, N. Y., and the increased activity of the ‘Underground Railroad’ (q.v.) emphasized the difficulty of the situation and embittered the feelings of the South.
President Taylor died on July 9, 1850. His successor, Millard Fillmore, strictly carried out the policy of his party. The Compromise Measures were approved by the new President and their final adoption caused a temporary lull in the contest over the question of slavery.
During this administration was concluded (April 19, 1850) the Clayton-Bulwer Treaty (q.v.), respecting an interoceanic canal.
In June, 1852, the two great parties made their Presidential nominations. The candidates of the Democracy were Franklin Pierce, of New Hampshire, and William R. King, of Alabama; the Whigs nominated General Winfield Scott, of Virginia, and William A. Graham, of North Carolina. Each of the leading parties adopted a platform which recognized the ‘finality’ of the Compromise of 1850. In August the Free-Soil Party nominated John P. Hale, of New Hampshire, and George W. Julian, of Indiana. The election resulted in the success of the Democratic ticket, which received 254 electoral votes, against 42 cast for the Whig nominees. The years of this administration were marked by the deaths of three of the most influential political leaders, Calhoun (March 31, 1850), Clay (June 29, 1850), and Webster (October 23, 1852).
|COPYRIGHT, 1903, DODD, MEAD & COMPANY.|
XVII. Administration of Franklin Pierce (1853-57). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, William L. Marcy, New York, March 7, 1853. Secretary of the Treasury, James Guthrie, Kentucky, March 7, 1853. Secretary of War, Jefferson Davis, Mississippi, March 7, 1853. Secretary of the Navy, James C. Dobbin, North Carolina, March 7, 1853. Secretary of the Interior, Robert McClelland, Michigan, March 7, 1853; Jacob Thompson, Mississippi, March 6, 1856. Attorney-General, Caleb Cushing, Massachusetts, March 7, 1853. Postmaster-General, James Campbell, Pennsylvania, March 7, 1853.
In spite of the ‘finality’ planks in the Presidential campaign, the question of slavery soon came once more to the front. The leader in reviving the struggle was Stephen A. Douglas (q.v.) , by whom, in January, 1854, the Kansas-Nebraska Bill was introduced into Congress. This divided the territory previously known as Nebraska into two Territories, one between parallels 37° and 40° to be called Kansas and the other between 40° and 43° to be called Nebraska. In both of these Territories, by the Missouri Compromise of 1820, slavery was prohibited; but the bill now introduced was framed upon the theory that the Missouri Compromise had been repealed by the Compromise of 1850, in spirit at least, and accordingly in the bill it was left to the people of each new Territory to determine whether or not slavery should be tolerated on its soil. The Senate promptly passed this bill, and two months later it was passed by the House. (See Kansas-Nebraska Bill; Popular Sovereignty.) This led to the final disruption of the old Whig Party. A new party, based on opposition to slavery, now arose in the North, whose members at first generally styled themselves ‘Anti-Nebraska Men,’ and which soon developed into the Republican Party (q.v.). It was composed of men opposed to the extension of slavery without regard to former party affiliations—Whigs, Democrats, Know-Nothings, and Free-Soilers. The bulk of the Southern Whigs for the time being became Know-Nothings. The so-called American Party, or Know-Nothings, who about this time began to exercise great influence, demanded especially more stringent naturalization laws and the election to high office of none but native-born citizens.
This virtual repeal of the Missouri Compromise, which left the new Territories to decide for themselves whether they would admit slavery or not, turned Kansas, as the Territory nearest the settled States, into a battleground for the two parties. The partisans of the North and those of the South kept pouring in fresh immigrants to outnumber the other side. At first the South was successful, and a code of laws was established with many and stringent provisions in behalf of slavery, although this was brought about, not by legitimate immigrants, but chiefly by a mob of Missourians, who passed across the border, took possession of the polling places, and carried the elections. A succession of outrages, amounting to civil war, followed, each faction establishing its own Government and electing its delegate to Congress. President Pierce issued a proclamation (February 11, 1850) calling for obedience to the laws and a cessation of violence and interference. Civil war, however, actually existed in Kansas. The two anti-slavery towns, Lawrence and Osawatomie, were sacked, and the Free-Soil Legislature was twice dispersed. The outrages continued and no solution of the problem was reached during this administration. (See Kansas.) In the meantime, public sentiment was excited to a still greater intensity by the assault upon Senator Charles Sumner (q.v.), of Massachusetts, by Preston S. Brooks (q.v.), of South Carolina (May 22, 1856).
In diplomacy during this administration friction arose between the United States and Austria over the Koszta affair (q.v.), and an important treaty was negotiated by Commodore Perry with Japan, by which intercourse was first opened between that country and the Western world.
In the Presidential election of 1856 the following tickets were in the field: Democratic, James Buchanan, of Pennsylvania, and John C. Breckenridge, of Kentucky; Republican, John C. Frémont, of California, and William A. Dayton, of New Jersey; Know-Nothing, Millard Fillmore, of New York, and A. J. Donelson, of Tennessee. The Democratic ticket received 174 electoral votes, the Republican 114, the Know-Nothing 8.
XVIII. Administration of James Buchanan (1857-61). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Lewis Cass, Michigan, March 6, 1857; J. S. Black, Pennsylvania, December 17, 1860. Secretary of the Treasury, Howell Cobb, Georgia, March 6, 1857; Philip F. Thomas, Maryland, December 12, 1860; John A. Dix, New York, January 11, 1861. Secretary of War, John B. Floyd, Virginia, March 6, 1857; Joseph Holt, Kentucky, January 18, 1861. Secretary of the Navy, Isaac Toucey, Connecticut, March 6, 1857. Secretary of the Interior, Jacob Thompson, Mississippi, March 6, 1857. Attorney-General, J. S. Black, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1857; E. M. Stanton, Pennsylvania, December 20, 1860. Postmaster-General, Aaron V. Brown, Tennessee, March 6, 1857; Joseph Holt, Kentucky, March 14, 1859; Horatio King, Maine, February 12, 1861.
Two days after Buchanan's inauguration, the Supreme Court rendered its decision in the famous Dred Scott Case (q.v.). in which the majority of the justices held that Congress had no right to prohibit slavery in any Territory, and that slaves themselves were mere property whose secure possession in any Territory of the Union was guaranteed by the Constitution.
Events now succeeded one another with exciting rapidity. The sympathizers with the South had made various attempts to extend the area of slavery by the acquisition of Cuba. In 1854 the American ministers to England, France, and Spain met at the Belgian town of Ostend and there issued the so-called Ostend Manifesto (q.v.) to the effect that under certain contingencies the safety of the United States would demand the annexation of Cuba. Another attempt to acquire slave territory was through filibustering expeditions, the most famous of which were that of Lopez to Cuba in 1851 and that of William Walker (q.v.) from 1855 to 1858 to Central America. Even the reopening of the African slave trade began to be discussed.
In December, 1857, the pro-slavery party in Kansas held a convention at Lecompton and proceeded to impose slavery upon the future State by submitting to the voters the alternative of voting for the Constitution with slavery or the Constitution without slavery, the instrument itself, however, affirming the right to the ownership of slaves at the time within the Territory. The anti-slavery party, whose ‘Topeka Constitution’ had previously been disallowed by the Federal Government, generally abstained from voting, with the result that the Constitution with slavery was adopted. (See Lecompton Constitution.) A new Territorial Legislature with an anti-slavery majority ordered a new election, at which the Constitution was to be accepted or rejected. It was rejected (January, 1858). The National Congress passed a bill resubmitting the Lecompton Constitution to the vote of the people, its adoption to be followed by the immediate admission of Kansas as a State. They rejected it, and thus Kansas remained a Territory. In 1859 a new convention adopted another Constitution, known as the Wyandotte Constitution, prohibiting slavery, and this, being submitted to the people, was adopted by them. Kansas, however, was not admitted as a State until 1861. The controversy in Congress over the admission of Kansas under the Lecompton Constitution proved an event of momentous importance as leading up to the division of the Democratic Party in the Presidential campaign of 1860. Minnesota was admitted in May, 1858, and Oregon in February, 1859. In 1858 a marked impression was caused by the publication of Helper's Impending Crisis. (See Helper, Hinton Rowan.) In the following year occurred John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry (q.v.). (See Brown, John). The South approached the campaign of 1860 with the conviction that there was no place for the South in an anti-slavery Union, and that the success of the Republicans, even though the Republican Party did not mean to interfere with slavery in the States, would mean an anti-slavery Union.
In the Presidential election of 1860 the situation was more complicated than ever before, and finally there appeared four tickets in the field. The Northern Democrats (see Democratic Party) nominated Stephen A. Douglas, of Illinois, and Herschel V. Johnson, of Georgia; the Southern Democrats, who had seceded from the Democratic convention, nominated John C. Breckenridge, of Kentucky, and Joseph Lane, of Oregon; a third party, the so-called Constitutional Union Party (q.v.), composed of conservative members of the old Whig and Know-Nothing parties, especially powerful in the South, nominated John Bell, of Tennessee, and Edward Everett, of Massachusetts; while the Republicans (see Republican Party) nominated Abraham Lincoln, of Illinois, and Hannibal Hamlin, of Maine. The Republican platform declared in favor of freedom in the Territories, a protective tariff, internal improvements, and a Pacific railway. In the ensuing election Lincoln received 180 electoral votes and was elected. He received every Northern vote in the electoral college, excepting three out of the seven cast by New Jersey. Breckenridge received 72 electoral votes of the South. Bell received the votes of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia, 39 altogether. Douglas received only the nine votes of Missouri and three of the votes of New Jersey. The North and South were arrayed against each other, and the South was beaten. Of the popular vote, Lincoln received 1,866,452; Douglas, 1,375,157; Breckenridge, 847,953; Bell, 590,631. Thus while Lincoln gained an overwhelming majority of the electoral votes, the combined Democratic votes exceeded his by 356,658, and the popular votes against him all together exceeded his own by 947,289. In the Southern States alone, the combined vote of two of the ‘Union’ candidates, Douglas and Bell, exceeded the vote of the disunion candidate, Breckenridge.
There was some ground for the claim that Lincoln was a ‘minority President,’ but the true significance of the election was the fact that political power had finally departed from the South. The slave States were at last confronted by an overwhelming opposition. The following figures from the census of each decade up to 1860 show the gradual growth of the power of the free States, the figures given for the slave States including the slaves:
|YEAR||Free States||Slave States|
The South lost no time in acting upon what many of her leaders had declared would be the signal of her withdrawal from the Union. President Buchanan's administration witnessed the culmination of the conflict that had for years been waged between the Free States and the Slave States. It was during this administration that the leaders of the South appear to have definitely decided that the welfare of their section could not be satisfactorily conserved while the Southern States remained a part of the Federal Union. Ever since the foundation of the Government, the statesmen of the South had for the most part maintained that theory of the Federal Constitution which regarded the ultimate sovereignty as residing not in the nation as a whole, but rather in the individual States themselves, which this theory—the theory of Calhoun and Hayne—held to be supreme and independent commonwealths. According to the view prevalent at the South, these sovereign States had entered into a league of union with the other States for purposes of mutual advantage; and this partnership, like others, was to endure only as long as its original purpose was maintained with regard to all the members. Events seemed now to indicate that the time for the dissolution of the compact had arrived. In the first place, the balance of political power was passing rapidly into the hands of a party inimical to the interests of the South, a party pledged to the ultimate abolition of slavery and to a commercial system of protection which was peculiarly unfavorable to an agricultural community such as the South then was. The greatest statesmen of the South had often deplored the presence of the slaves as an economic and social evil; yet, inasmuch as slavery actually existed, the question appeared to them a practical one rather than a matter of speculative interest. The Abolitionists of the North had begun a crusade which, conducted with extreme bitterness and violence of denunciation, exasperated the South beyond measure. Men who believed thoroughly in the abstract wrongfulness of slavery indignantly took up its defense. The continual threats of the Southerners to destroy the Union, the violence to which so many of them were so ready to resort, as in the case of the assault upon Senator Sumner, and the high-handed proceedings that had marked the civil war in Kansas, all served to embitter and intensify the opposition at the North.
As soon as the result of the Presidential election was known, the Legislature of South Carolina ordered a State convention, which on December 20th unanimously declared that “the Union now subsisting between South Carolina and other States, under the name of the United States, is hereby dissolved.” The example of South Carolina was followed by Mississippi, January 9, 1861; Florida, January 10; Alabama, January 11; Georgia, January 19; and later by Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, and Tennessee. Kentucky and Missouri were divided.
On February 4, 1861, delegates from seven seceding States met at Montgomery, Ala., and formed a provisional government, under the title of the Confederate States of America (q.v.). A provisional constitution was adopted similar in most respects to that of the United States, and the Government formally inaugurated, February 18, 1861, with Jefferson Davis, of Mississippi, as President, and Alexander H. Stephens, of Georgia, as Vice-President, and on May 24th, the seat of government was established at Richmond, Va. On the same day on which the Confederate delegates met at Montgomery a Peace Congress, in which twenty-one States were represented, assembled at Washington, but accomplished nothing. (See Peace Congress.) As State after State withdrew from the Union, its Senators and Representatives in Congress resigned their seats; and a large proportion of the officers of the army and navy of Southern birth, believing that their first and final allegiance was due to their State, and that the action of each State carried with it all its citizens, also resigned their commissions.
President Buchanan, denying his constitutional power to compel the seceding States to return to the Union, though he believed that secession was unconstitutional, made a feeble and ineffectual attempt to relieve the garrison at Fort Sumter, in Charleston Harbor, closely besieged by the forces of South Carolina. Commissioners were sent by South Carolina to Washington to arrange for a transfer to the State of United States property lying therein, and for a division of the national debt, but were not officially received. During all this time great efforts were made, but without result, to effect compromises of the difficulties. See Crittenden Compromise; Peace Congress.
Meanwhile, to the vacillation and incompetence of the President the prompt and vigorous action of the Southern leaders formed a striking contrast. By their direction, armed forces were rapidly organized, United States arsenals and arms were seized, and batteries were planted for the reduction of such forts as threatened a firm resistance. In the last months, however, Buchanan's reorganized Cabinet showed a much more determined front.
Among the events of Buchanan's administration were the '‘Mormon Rebellion’' of 1857-58 (see Mormons; Mountain Meadows Massacre), the disastrous financial panic of 1857, the discovery of silver and petroleum in the United States, the Congressional investigation of President Buchanan's connection with the Lecompton Bill (see Covode Investigation), and the famous debates between Lincoln and Douglas. See Lincoln, Abraham.
XIX. and XX. Administration of Abraham Lincoln (1861-65) and of Andrew Johnson (1865-69). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, William H. Seward, New York, March 5, 1861. Secretary of the Treasury, S. P. Chase, Ohio, March 5, 1861; W. P. Fessenden, Maine, July 1, 1864; Hugh McCulloch, Indiana, March 7, 1865. Secretary of War, Simon Cameron, Pennsylvania, March 5, 1861; Edwin M. Stanton, Pennsylvania, January 15, 1862; U. S. Grant (ad interim), August 12, 1867; Edwin M. Stanton (reinstated), January 14, 1868; J. M. Schofield, New York, May 28, 1868. Secretary of the Navy, Gideon Welles, Connecticut, March 5, 1861. Secretary of the Interior, Caleb P. Smith, March 5, 1861; John P. Usher, Indiana, January 8, 1863; James Harlan, Iowa, May 15, 1865; O. H. Browning, Illinois, July 27, 1866. Attorney-General, Edward Bates, Missouri, March 5, 1861; Titian J. Coffee, June 22, 1863; James Speed, Kentucky, December 2, 1864; Henry Stanbery, Ohio, July 23, 1866; William M. Evarts, New York, July 15, 1868. Postmaster-General, Montgomery Blair, Maryland, March 5, 1861; William Dennison, Ohio, September 24, 1864; Alexander W. Randall, Wisconsin, July 25, 1866.
On March 4, 1861, President Lincoln was inaugurated at Washington. In his inaugural address, he said: “I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe that I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.” He also said, however: “The Union of these States is perpetual,” and “No State upon its own mere motion can lawfully get out of the Union.” The tension at the time was extreme, and was not lessened by the vigorous efforts at conciliation which marked the first month of his administration: and the feelings of the whole Northern people were inflamed by the bombardment April 12th-13th and the enforced surrender on April 14th of Fort Sumter, in Charleston Harbor. (See Fort Sumter.) On April 15th President Lincoln called for 75,000 three months' volunteers, large numbers of whom were in a few days marching to the defense of Washington. After the battle of Bull Run on July 21st (see Bill Run, First Battle of), Congress voted to call out 500,000 men.
On January 1, 1862, the United States had about 576,000 men in the field, and the Confederates had about 350,000. For an account of the military operations, see Civil War and separate articles on the various battles; and for an account of the Confederacy, see Confederate States of America.
On July 1, 1862, the President called for 300,000 three years' men, and on August 4th for 300,000 nine months' militia for the Federal Army. The United States Congress passed an act on August 6, 1861, freeing all slaves used by Confederates in military operations in the Confederacy; in April, 1862, purchased and emancipated all slaves in the District of Columbia; and on June 9, 1862, abolished slavery throughout the public domain. On January 1, 1863, President Lincoln issued a proclamation in pursuance of a prior proclamation issued on September 22, 1862, after the battle of Antietam (q.v.), declaring the freedom of all the slaves in the rebellious States. (See Emancipation Proclamation.) The suspension of the writ of habeas corpus (q.v.), the frequent seizure of newspapers, the dispersion of public meetings, and the imprisonment without trial of opponents of the Government of the North, were generally recognized as essential to the security of the nation, although the introduction of such practices gave rise to sharp criticism of the Administration and furnished the opponents of its policy with ample opportunity for partisan attacks. (See Vallandigham, C. L.; and Milligan, ex parte.) The unanimity of the North was also somewhat affected by great peace-meetings, while the disturbed state of the public feeling was increased by the terrible draft riots in New York, in July, 1863. (See Draft Riots in New York.) Business conditions became unstable, as many banks had been forced to suspend specie payments, the paper money of the United States having largely depreciated. Nevertheless, the strength of the Government was not seriously impaired, the appropriations of Congress in 1863 amounting to $972,000,000, The Confederates were cut off from all foreign aid, except such as could come to them through the blockade, and their own resources, both of men and material, gradually became exhausted. The Southern railways had been in large measure destroyed or seized by the Federal troops, and it became difficult to transport supplies and to feed armies, while the North had the additional advantage of command of the sea and access to foreign markets.
In January, 1864, the United States had nearly 975,000 men raised and provided for; the entire Confederate forces probably numbered about 470,000. On April 9, 1865, the main Confederate army, under General Lee, surrendered to General Grant at Appomattox Court-House. On April 26th General Johnston surrendered to General Sherman in North Carolina; and with the surrender of Kirby Smith in Texas, on May 26th, the war was over.
In 1864 Lincoln had been reëlected President and Andrew Johnson, of Tennessee, elected Vice-President. The Democratic party had nominated General George B. McClellan, of New Jersey, and George H. Pendleton, of Ohio, on a platform which declared the conduct of the war a failure. Lincoln received 212 electoral votes, and McClellan 21, though the disparity between the popular votes was relatively much less, Lincoln receiving (counting the votes cast by soldiers in the field) 2,330,552 and McClellan 1,835,985. Only New Jersey, Delaware, and Kentucky were carried by the Democrats. West Virginia had been admitted to the Union, June 19, 1863. See West Virginia.
On April 14, 1865, while the North was rejoicing over the capture of Richmond and the surrender of General Lee, President Lincoln was assassinated at Ford's Theatre in Washington, by John Wilkes Booth (q.v.), while an accomplice attacked and severely injured Seward, the Secretary of State. Andrew Johnson thus became President.
The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution, forever abcdishing slavery in the States and Territories of the Union, was declared ratified by two-thirds of the States, December 18, 1865.
The termination of the war imposed upon Congress and the Executive the duty of reconstructing the governments of the States that had seceded. This now became the most important question before the National Government, and for a decade dominated national politics. During Johnson's administration it involved a bitter struggle between the President and Congress, which culminated in the resolution of the House of Representatives, February 24, 1868, to impeach him “of high crimes and misdemeanors.” (See Johnson, Andrew; Reconstruction.) The immediate occasion of the passage of this resolution was the course of President Johnson in violating the “Tenure of Office Act” (q.v.), which made requisite the consent of the Senate to removals from office by the President, and of which Congress availed itself to prevent the removal of Stanton from the position of Secretary of War. The Senate acted as the court of impeachment, and on March 23, 1868, the Chief Justice presiding, proceeded to try Andrew Johnson on eleven articles of impeachment. The result was his acquittal, the prosecution lacking the necessary two-thirds majority. It was not until 1868 that the States of Arkansas, Alabama, Florida, North and South Carolina, Georgia, and Louisiana were readmitted into the Union. On March 1, 1867, Nebraska had been admitted as a new State. About the same time Alaska was sold to the United States by Russia.
At the election of 1868 the Republican candidates were Ulysses S. Grant, of Illinois, and Schuyler Colfax, of Indiana. The Democrats nominated Horatio Seymour, of New York, and Francis P. Blair, Jr., of Missouri. Grant and Colfax received 214 electoral votes, and Seymour and Blair 80, the Democrats having carried eight States. On February 26, 1869, the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution, guaranteeing the right of suffrage without regard to race, color, or previous condition of servitude, passed Congress and was ratified March 30, 1870.
XXI. and XXII. Administration of Ulysses S. Grant (1869-1877). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, E. B. Washburne, Illinois, March 5, 1869; Hamilton Fish, New York, March 11, 1869. Secretary of the Treasury, George S. Boutwell, Massachusetts, March 11, 1869; William A. Richardson, Massachusetts, March 17, 1873; Benjamin H. Bristow, Kentucky, June 2, 1874; Lot M. Morrill, Maine, June 21, 1876. Secretary of War, John A. Rawlins, Illinois, March 11, 1869; William T. Sherman, Ohio, September 9, 1869; William W. Belknap, Iowa, October 25, 1869; Alphonso Taft, Ohio, March 8, 1876; J. D. Cameron, Pennsylvania, May 22, 1876. Secretary of the Navy, Adolph E. Borie, Pennsylvania, March 5, 1869; George M. Robeson, New Jersey, June 25, 1869. Secretary of the Interior, Jacob D. Cox, Ohio, March 5, 1869; Columbus Delano, Ohio, November 1, 1870; Zachariah Chandler, Michigan, October 19, 1875. Attorney-General, E. R. Hoar, Massachusetts, March 5, 1869; Amos T. Akerman, Georgia, June 23, 1870; George H. Williams, Oregon, December 14, 1871; Edwards Pierrepont, New York, April 26, 1875; Alphonso Taft, Ohio, May 22, 1876. Postmaster-General, J. A. J. Creswell, Maryland, March 5, 1869; Marshall Jewell, Connecticut, August 24, 1874; James M. Tyner, Indiana, July 12, 1876.
One of the most important events of President Grant's administration was the meeting of the Joint High Commission, appointed to consider the Alabama case (see Alabama Claims), and which concluded the Treaty of Washington (q.v.), ratified by the Senate May 24, 1871.
Among other notable occurrences during this administration was the completion in May, 1869, of the Union and Central Pacific railroads, begun in 1865, providing a continuous line of railway from the Missouri to the Pacific, and completing the transcontinental system. Out of the connection of the Government with the construction of these roads—the Government having given valuable subsidies in land and money to the constructing companies—arose the Crédit Mobilier scandal, which involved the reputation of many prominent officials and members of Congress. (See Crédit Mobilier of America.) The enmity of the white population of the Southern States toward the freedmen, particularly in regard to the exercise by the latter of their newly acquired right of suffrage, attracted public attention, 1868-72, until Congress intervened by legislation in the form of the so-called Force Act of April, 1870. (See Ku Klux Klan; Reconstruction.) Disputes arose in several of the States over contested elections, and the President intervened in Louisiana in 1872-73, by sending Federal troops to that State, to bring about an adjustment of the difficulty, the troops supporting the Republican candidate for Governor and installing him in office, (See Louisiana.) In this and other instances, as well as in the suppression of the Ku Klux Klan, the President was considered by many to have acted with undue severity toward the South. A movement was made by the Government at the desire of President Grant in the direction of the acquisition of San Domingo, the people of that country desiring annexation to the United States, but the project was defeated in the Senate. In March, 1871, the first steps were taken toward the reform of the civil service by a bill authorizing the President to appoint a board of Civil Service Commissioners to provide for the appointment of applicants for minor offices on the basis of an examination.
During General Grant's first administration a new party arose as the result of a reaction against the extreme centralization of power in the Federal Government due to the exigencies of war. This party was known as the Liberal Republican Party, and numbered among its adherents some of the most prominent names in the old Republican Party, such as Horace Greeley (q.v.), Charles Francis Adams, Charles Sumner, and Carl Schurz. This party nominated, in 1872, Horace Greeley, of New York, for President, and B. Gratz Brown, of Missouri, for Vice-President, on a platform deprecating any further interference by the Government in the local affairs of the South. (See Liberal Republican Party; Republican Party.) This ticket was ratified by the convention of the Democratic Party held in the same year. The Republicans renominated General Grant, with Henry Wilson (q.v.), of Massachusetts, for Vice-President. The Republican ticket received 286 electoral votes, against 66 scattering, Greeley having died before the Electoral College met. Of the popular votes Grant received 3,597,132, Greeley 2,834,125. In this election appeared for the first time the Prohibition Party and a Labor Reform Party, the latter being an expression of a significant movement among workingmen which began during this administration, and led in 1869 to the first attempt in the United States to organize on a permanent basis all kinds of manual labor. The votes of Louisiana and Arkansas and three votes from Georgia were not counted.
A serious difficulty with Spain arose because of the seizure on October 31, 1872, by the Spanish steamer Tornado of the Virginius, a filibustering vessel flying the American flag, and the execution of part of her crew. See Virginius Massacre.
In 1873-74 the party known as ‘Grangers’ or ‘Patrons of Husbandry’ (see Grange) rose into some prominence; an act for the resumption in 1879 of specie payment was passed in January, 1875; and an extensive ‘Whisky Ring’ involving a corrupt association among distillers and Federal officers to defraud the Government of the tax on liquors was exposed in the same year. (See Whisky Ring.) A new coinage act, since denounced by advocates of free silver as the ‘crime of 1873,’ was passed providing for the coinage of gold and of fractional silver currency; an act known as the ‘salary grab’ was passed in 1873; and much local disorder occurred in the Southern States between the so-called ‘carpetbag’ governments and the white citizens. Grant interfering in what many considered a harsh and arbitrary manner. During Grant's second administration occurred the disastrous financial panic of 1873. A movement for the inflation of the paper currency was set on foot, and was checked by President Grant through his veto of the so-called Inflation Bill, which had been passed by Congress. This administration was disturbed by wars with the Modocs and Sioux, the latter of whom overwhelmed General Custer's command in 1876. (See Custer, George A.) In Philadelphia, between May and November, 1876, was held a mammoth exposition to commemorate the centennial of American independence. See Centennial Exhibition.
With Grant's administration of affairs much dissatisfaction was felt throughout the country, owing to corruption on the part of high Government officials. Before the close of his first term there were many signs of reaction against Republican rule, and the organization of the Liberal Republican Party showed the disaffection of a considerable element in the Republican Party itself. By the close of his second term a well-defined and powerful opposition had arisen, based primarily on the President's apparent severity toward the South; on legislative scandals, such as the Crédit Mobilier affair and the ‘salary grab’ scandal in Congress; the Whisky Ring scandal and the impeachment for corruption in distributing patronage of Belknap, Secretary of War, who resigned rather than submit to a trial; and on alleged general administrative demoralization, caused in part at least by the President's appointment, upon the advice of political leaders, of a number of unfit officials. Further discontent was caused by the consequences of the disastrous panic of 1873, for which, as was inevitable, the Administration was held by many in a measure accountable. Many ‘War Democrats,’ moreover, who had lent their support to the Republican Party when the prosecution of the war was the all-absorbing issue, now began to return to their old party affiliations, and to emphasize issues different from those immediately involved in the Republican war policy.
Colorado was admitted as a State, August 1, 1876. In 1876 the Republican candidates were Rutherford B. Hayes, of Ohio, and William A. Wheeler, of New York; the Democratic candidates were Samuel J. Tilden, of New York, and Thomas A. Hendricks, of Indiana. On the face of the returns, Tilden and Hendricks seemed to have 184 electoral votes, to 172 for Hayes and Wheeler, with the votes of Florida, South Carolina, and Louisiana, and one vote of Oregon in doubt. Charges were made of fraudulent voting in several States; party feeling ran so high as to suggest the possibility of acts of violence to secure control of the Government; and all the attendant circumstances made the struggle one of the most momentous since the foundation of the Government. Hayes and Wheeler were finally declared elected by an Electoral Commission chosen from both Houses of Congress and from the Supreme Court of the United States, whose decision was accepted by all concerned as final and irrevocable. (See Electoral Commission.) As thus finally decided 185 electoral votes were given to Hayes and Wheeler and 184 votes to Tilden and Hendricks.
XXIII. Administration of Rutherford B. Hayes (1877-1881). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, William M. Evarts, New York, March 12, 1877. Secretary of the Treasury, John Sherman, Ohio, March 8, 1877. Secretary of War, George W. McCrary, Iowa, March 12, 1877; Alexander Ramsey, Minnesota, December 12, 1879. Secretary of the Navy, Richard W.Thompson, Indiana, March 12, 1877; Nathan Goff, Jr., West Virginia, January 6, 1881. Secretary of the Interior, Carl Schurz, Missouri, March 12, 1877. Attorney-General, Charles Devens, Massachusetts, March 12, 1877. Postmaster-General, David M. Key, Tennessee, March 12, 1877; Horace Maynard, Tennessee, August 25, 1880.
The early portion of this administration was made memorable by the troubles in South Carolina and Louisiana, where rival State governments, each claiming to be legally elected, contended for supremacy. In the former State the difficulty was settled by President Hayes, who ordered the withdrawal of the United States troops which had been stationed at Columbia, and had been an objectionable feature of the contest: whereupon the Republican Governor, Chamberlain, retired, and General Wade Hampton took peaceful possession of the office. A settlement was also effected in Louisiana, a commission being sent thither by the President, when the Democratic Governor, Nichols, was enabled to gain possession of his seat, the Federal troops being in this instance also withdrawn from New Orleans. This marked the end of Federal interference in the local concerns of the Southern States, an interference that had become yearly more objectionable to moderate men at the North, who no longer cherished the animosities resulting from the Civil War. See Reconstruction.
This year was further noteworthy by the occurrence, in July, of railroad strikes and riots throughout the country, to the injury of business and with serious loss of property. (See Strikes and Lockouts.) The excitement occasioned by the near approach of the period fixed by Congress for the resumption of specie payments led to the formation of a party opposed to the prevailing sentiment with regard to financial questions. Such a party was organized in Toledo, Ohio, February 22, 1878, under the name of the National Party, delegates being present from 28 States; its principles included bimetallism, the suppression of national bank issues, a graduated income tax, and opposition to Chinese labor. In the State elections of the same year this party, which became popularly known as the Greenback Party (q.v.), polled upward of a million votes.
In February, 1878, the dissatisfaction which had been felt by the advocates of silver coinage with the act of 1873 suspending the coinage of silver, except for subsidiary coins, found expression in the passage by Congress, over the President's veto, of the so-called Bland-Allison Bill, which provided for the annual purchase by the Secretary of the Treasury of at least two million dollars' worth of silver bullion to be coined into legal-tender dollars, each containing 412½ grains of standard silver. On January 1, 1879, specie payments were resumed throughout the United States, after a suspension of seventeen years, and in accordance with the act of Congress approved January 14, 1875, the process of resumption being effected without excitement.
An extraordinary movement northward of the colored population from certain of the South- ern States took place in 187(1 and was the source of much uneasiness among the planters. (See Negro Exodus.) This year also saw the decline and fall of the labor agitation in San Francisco, which under the leadership of Denis Kearney (q.v.) had been continued with great virulence since 1877.
On June 2, 1880, the Republican National Convention met in Chicago to nominate candidates for President and Vice-President. The names most prominent before this convention were those of Ulysses S. Grant, James G. Blaine, and John Sherman. The final choice, however, was James A. Garfield, of Ohio, with Chester A. Arthur, of New York, for Vice-President. On June 11th the Greenback national convention met in Chicago and nominated for President James B. Weaver, who was afterward accepted as the candidate of the Socialist party. On June 22d the Democratic National Convention assembled at Cincinnati, Ohio, and nominated Winfield S. Hancock, of Pennsylvania, and William H. English, of Indiana. The result of the election was the choice of Garfield and Arthur, who received 214 electoral votes, against 155 votes cast for Hancock and English.
XXIV. Administration of James A. Garfield (1881) and of Chester A. Arthur (1881-1885). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, James G. Blaine, Maine, March 5, 1881; Frederick T. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey, December 12, 1881. Secretary of the Treasury, William H. Windom, Minnesota, March 5, 1881; Charles J. Folger, New York, October 27, 1881. Secretary of War, Robert T. Lincoln, Illinois, March 5, 1881. Secretary of the Navy, W. H. Hunt, Louisiana, March 5, 1881; William E. Chandler, New Hampshire, April 12, 1882. Secretary of the Interior, S. J. Kirkwood, Iowa, March 5, 1881; Henry M. Teller, Colorado, April 6, 1882. Attorney-General, Wayne MacVeagh, Pennsylvania, March 5, 1881; Benjamin H. Brewster, Pennsylvania, December 16, 1881. Postmaster-General, Thomas L. James, New York, March 5, 1881; Timothy O. Howe, Wisconsin, December 20, 1881; W. Q. Gresham, Indiana, April 3, 1883; Frank Hatton, Iowa, October 14, 1884.
The politicians in the Republican Party who had favored the election of General Grant for a third term of the Presidency, popularly known, particularly in New York, as ‘Stalwarts,’ had not been pleased with the nomination of Garfield, and in the Presidential campaign they had been induced to give his candidacy their support only on a general understanding that the candidate if successful would give them a liberal share of patronage. The new President had in various ways shown his desire to conciliate both wings of the party; he had held many conferences with the leaders of each, and his first nominations were apparently dictated by a desire to conciliate the ‘Stalwarts.’ But his appointment of William H. Robertson, who had been instrumental in securing the President's nomination at Chicago, to the post of Collector of the Port of New York, aroused the opposition of the Senator from that State, Roscoe Conkling (q.v.), a leading ‘Stalwart.’ Finding that his opposition was ineffectual, Conkling and his colleague, Thomas C. Platt (q.v.), resigned their seats in the Senate. May 16, 1881, and appealed to the New York Legislature for reëlection as a justification of their course. The appeal was unsuccessful and a bitter contest, lasting until the latter part of July, ended with the election of Miller and Lapham to the Senate. Meanwhile the President's appointments had been confirmed. The new Postmaster-General had discovered colossal frauds in the Star Route Service of the Postal Department, and an effort was made to bring the criminals to justice. (See Star-Route Frauds.) The diplomacy of Secretary Blaine in regard to the war between Chile and Peru and the Panama Canal (q.v.) excited considerable newspaper criticism.
On July 2d President Garfield was shot by an assassin, a disappointed office-seeker, Charles J. Guiteau, and after lingering for seventy-nine days between life and death died, on September 19th, at Elberon, N. J. (See Garfield, James Abram) On the same day in New York, Vice-President Arthur took the oath of office as President.
Among the national events of 1882 were the passage by Congress of the Anti-Polygamy Bill, March 22d; the Apportionment Bill, increasing the number of Congressional Representatives to 325; and the Anti-Chinese Bill, suspending Chinese immigration for twenty years. The last was vetoed by the President, who, however, signed a subsequent bill limiting the term of suspension to ten years. Among the several State elections of this year, one at least had a national significance. In New York the lukewarmness of that wing of the Republican Party which had sympathized with General Garfield in his contest with the leaders of the faction to which Arthur was allied, and the indignation of the ‘Independents’ at the political methods pursued by President Arthur to secure the nomination and election of his friend, Charles J. Folger, as Governor of the State, resulted in the election of the Democratic candidate, Grover Cleveland (q.v.), by the immense majority of 192,000 votes. The victory of the Democrats in Pennsylvania was also looked upon as to some extent a rebuke of the Administration, and especially of machine methods in politics. The question of civil-service reform was now pressed with renewed eagerness by its advocates; and the so-called Pendleton Bill, which had already passed the Senate, passed the House in January, 1883, and was signed by the President. See Civil-Service Reform.
The Republican National Convention of 1884 met in Chicago during the first week of June and the fourth ballot resulted in the nomination of James G. Blaine (q.v.) for the Presidency, and of John A. Logan, of Illinois, for the Vice-Presidency. The nomination of Blaine was secured in spite of bitter organized opposition of the ‘Independent’ faction in the Republican Party, popularly known as ‘Mugwumps’ (q.v.). The papers which represented the views of the ‘Independents’ withheld their support from Blaine, and indicated that they would cast their influence on the side of the Democratic candidate, in case some statesman of tried incorruptibility were chosen by the Democratic convention. It was generally understood that either Grover Cleveland or Thomas F. Bayard would be acceptable to them. When the convention met in July these two were the leading candidates on the first ballot. On the second ballot Cleveland secured the necessary two-thirds majority, and was declared the nominee. Thomas A. Hendricks, of Indiana, was nominated for Vice-President. Tickets were put in the field by the Prohibitionists (see Prohibition), who nominated John P. St. John, of Kansas, for President, and William Daniel, of Maryland, for Vice-President; and by the Anti-Monopoly and Greenback Labor parties, both of which nominated Gen. Benjamin F. Butler (q.v.), of Massachusetts, for President. The campaign which followed developed unusual excitement, party rancor, and personal recrimination. The election was unexpectedly close, and the result for a few days hung in doubt over conflicting returns in the pivotal State of New York; but the official count gave a plurality of 1047 to Cleveland, who received 219 electoral votes, while Blaine received 182, and a popular vote of 4,874,986, while Blaine received 4,851,981. St. John had a popular vote of 150,309, and Butler a popular vote of 175,370.
XXV. Administration of Grover Cleveland (1885-89). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Thomas F. Bayard, Delaware, March 6, 1885. Secretary of the Treasury, Daniel Manning, New York, March 6, 1885; Charles S. Fairchild, New York, April 1, 1887. Secretary of Mar, William C. Endicott, Massachusetts, March 6, 1885. Secretary of the Navy, William C. Whitney, New York, March 6, 1885. Secretary of the Interior, Lucius Q. C. Lamar, Mississippi, March 6, 1885; William F. Vilas, Wisconsin, January 16, 1888. Attorney-General, Augustus H. Garland, Arkansas, March 6, 1885. Postmaster-General, William F. Vilas, Wisconsin, March 6, 1885; Don M. Dickinson, Michigan, January 16, 1888.
Cleveland was the first Democratic President to be chosen after the election of 1856. His administration from the outset was marked by a general application to the public service of the principles so long advocated by the friends of civil-service reform, the President applying the principles of the Pendleton Bill (see Civil-Service Reform) to many offices not specifically covered by the act. For the first time in half a century no sweeping changes were made in the public service on the accession to power of a new party.
In 1886 a bill passed Congress to regulate the succession to the Presidential office—a question that assumed some special importance on the death of Vice-President Hendricks. Among the important Congressional acts of this Administration were the new Anti-Polygamy or the Edmunds-Tucker Act (1887) dissolving the Mormon Church as a corporate body, and confiscating all the property of that Church in excess of $50,000; the Interstate Commerce Act (q.v.) of 1887; and an act (1888) absolutely prohibiting further immigration of the Chinese. With respect to legislation President Cleveland's administration was characterized by an unprecedented number of Presidential vetoes, the number aggregating more than 300, mostly of pension bills.
In December, 1887, President Cleveland sent to Congress a message devoted to the single question of the tariff. After stating that the estimated surplus in the Treasury in June, 1888, would be fully $140,000,000, he declared the existing tariff laws to lie the source of unnecessary taxation, and asked for a reduction of the duties on raw materials, especially on wool. In accordance with this recommendation, the so-called Mills Bill was introduced and passed the House. It removed duties aggregating $50,000,000 per annum, but failed to pass the Senate, which was Republican. At this session of Congress the largest appropriation for rivers and harbors ever known was made. It amounted to $22,227,000, and became law without the President's signature.
At the Democratic Convention of 1888, Cleveland was nominated for President, with Allen G. Thurman, of Ohio, as the candidate for Vice-President. The Republicans nominated Benjamin Harrison, of Indiana, and Levi P. Morton, of New York. The Prohibition Party put forward as its candidates Clinton B. Fisk, of New Jersey, and John A. Brooks, of Missouri. The campaign was fought out largely on the tariff questions raised by Cleveland's message of 1887, and resulted in the choice of the Republican candidates, who received 233 electoral votes, as against 168 cast for the Democratic nominees, the popular vote for Cleveland, however (5,540,329), exceeding that of Harrison (5,439,853). The Prohibition ticket received 249,406 votes, and the Union Labor candidate, Alson J. Streeter, 140,935 votes.
XXVI. Administration of Benjamin Harrison (1889-93). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, James G. Blaine, Maine, March 7, 1889. Secretary of the Treasury, William Windom, Minnesota, March 7, 1889; Charles Foster, Ohio, February 21, 1891. Secretary of War, Redfield Proctor, Vermont, March 7, 1889. Attorney-General, W. H. H. Miller, Indiana, March 7, 1889. Postmaster-General, John Wanamaker, Pennsylvania, March 7, 1889. Secretary of the Navy, Benjamin F. Tracy, New York, March 7, 1889. Secretary of the Interior, John W. Noble, Missouri, March 7, 1889. Secretary of Agriculture, Jeremiah M. Rusk, Wisconsin, March 7, 1889.
The administration of Harrison witnessed a remarkable growth of public interest in the foreign relations of the United States, both commercially and otherwise. One cause of this is to be found in the meeting of the so-called Pan-American Congress at Washington, October 21, 1889, under the presidency of Secretary Blaine, which did much to foster a popular sentiment in favor of commercial reciprocity between the United States and the other American republics. This policy, warmly advocated by Blaine, found expression in the so-called ‘reciprocity section’ of the important bill for the revision of the tariff prepared by William McKinley (q.v.). of Ohio, which passed both Houses of Congress and became a law October 1, 1890. (For other provisions of the bill, see Tariff.) Under this section reciprocity treaties were early negotiated with Brazil and Spain, and the principle was thereafter strikingly developed.
Several diplomatic difficulties of more or less seriousness had arisen between the United States and foreign Powers within a few years. Among these had been complications growing out of a state of anarchy on the Isthmus of Panama, the United States Government, in accordance with its treaty obligations, being required to send an armed force to protect the Isthmus. A dispute with Germany over the Samoan Islands (q.v.) in 1889 had also taken a serious aspect, though finally arranged in an amicable manner by a treaty signed at Berlin (February 4, 1890). A serious disagreement with England also arose in 1890-91 regarding the rights of this country acquired in Bering Sea by our treaty with Russia, and was referred to arbitration in 1891. The question was finally settled in 1893. (See Bering Sea Controversy.) The lynching of several Italians by a mob in New Orleans, in 1891, led to something like a diplomatic rupture with Italy, which recalled its Minister from Washington. In October, 1891, difficulties arose with Chile in consequence of a murderous assault upon American seamen in Valparaiso.
In November, 1889, four States, North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana, and Washington, were admitted into the Union. On May 2, 1890. the new Territory of Oklahoma (q.v.) was organized, and Idaho (July 3d) and Wyoming (July 11th) were admitted as States. Other events of importance during Harrison's administration were the passage in 1890 of the Dependent Pension Bill, which nearly doubled the number of pensioners; the repeal of the Bland-Allison Silver Coinage Act; the passage of the Sherman Silver Purchase and Coinage Act, requiring the Secretary of the Treasury to purchase 4,500,000 ounces of silver each month and to coin 2,000,000 ounces into silver dollars each month until July 1, 1891; and the labor disturbances at Homestead, Pa.
The close of Harrison's administration witnessed a serious financial panic. An event of international importance was the overthrow of the monarchy in Hawaii by the foreign residents, and the application made by the new Government for annexation of the islands to the United States. The President sent a treaty of annexation to the Senate (February, 1893), but it was not acted upon. See Hawaiian Islands.
The conventions of the two great political parties had been held in June, 1892. The Democrats nominated Grover Cleveland, of New York, for the Presidency, and Adlai E. Stevenson, of Illinois, for the Vice-Presidency. The Republican Convention renominated President Harrison for the Presidency and selected Whitelaw Reid, of New York, for the Vice-Presidency. The People's Party, or Populists, nominated Generals J. B. Weaver, of Iowa, and James G. Field, of Virginia. The ensuing campaign was largely conducted on the question of the tariff, and resulted in the election of Cleveland and Stevenson, who received 277 electoral votes, as against 145 for Harrison and Reid, and 22 for Weaver and Field.
XXVII. Second Administration of Grover Cleveland (1893-97). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, Walter Q. Gresham, Indiana, March 6, 1893; Richard Olney, Massachusetts, June 10, 1895. Secretary of the Treasury, John G. Carlisle, Kentucky, March 6, 1893. Secretary of War, Daniel S. Lamont, New York, March 6, 1893. Secretary of the Navy, Hilary A. Herbert, Alabama, March 6, 1893. Secretary of the Interior, Hoke Smith, Georgia, March 6, 1893. Attorney-General, Richard Olney, Massachusetts, March 6, 1893; Judson Harmon, Ohio. Postmaster-General, Wilson S. Bissell, New York, March 6, 1893; William L. Wilson, West Virginia, March, 1895. Secretary of Agriculture, J. Sterling Morton, Nebraska, March 6, 1893.
In his second administration the President applied himself particularly to the promotion of tariff and financial reforms, and this period was marked by the intense and persistent opposition of his own party in both Houses of Congress. His earliest act of importance was the withdrawal from the Senate of the treaty for the annexation of Hawaii to the United States, which had been negotiated in the closing days of the previous administration. He also sent James H. Blount, ex-Congressman from Georgia, to Hawaii as a special commissioner to investigate the circumstances of the overthrow of the royal Government, and, on his report, took the ground that the United States Government had through its representatives committed a grievous wrong against the kingdom. See Hawaiian Islands.
The legislation on the tariff was the most important domestic incident of this term. A new bill, bearing the name of Chairman Wilson, of the House Committee on Ways and Means, and providing for free raw sugar, free wool, free coal, free lumber, and free iron ore, and reducing the duties on many articles in the existing schedules, was introduced December 19, 1893. In the following month a measure providing for an income tax was presented in the House, and that and others concerning the internal revenue were incorporated in the bill during the subsequent debate. When the bill reached the Senate it underwent radical alterations, many amendments being made, notably those imposing a duty on sugar, coal, and iron ore, and the House at first refused to concur in the Senate amendments. Finally, however, it withdrew from its position of non-concurrence and the bill was passed. (See Tariff.) The President allowed the bill to become a law without his signature. On an appeal to the United States Supreme Court, that body, April 2, 1893, declared two provisions of the income-tax law unconstitutional, and upheld the remainder by a tie vote, and on May 20th, on a rehearing, declared the whole measure unconstitutional.
Early in the term occurred the great commercial panic of 1893, which was followed by a long period of depression. President Cleveland was determined to maintain the gold standard, and in the summer of that year called an extra session of Congress in order to secure the repeal of the Sherman Act of 1890. This he accomplished in the face of great opposition. In January, 1894, because of the heavy withdrawal of gold coin from the Treasury and the large reduction in the gold reserve of $100,000,000, Secretary Carlisle, of the Treasury Department, invited proposals for the purchase of $50,000,000 of 5 per cent. bonds, and this sale resulted in the acquisition of $58,660,917 in gold, which was added to the reserve. The drain on the reserve, however, continued, and in November following the Secretary issued a second call for the purchase of $50,000,000 bonds, when the subscriptions aggregated $178,341,150 and the sale yielded $58,538,500 in gold, which brought the reserve to $111,142,021. In about two months after this sale the reserve declined to $41,340,181. The President, in a special message to Congress, January 28, 1895, recommended that authority be given the Secretary of the Treasury to issue bonds bearing a low rate of interest, to maintain the reserve and redeem outstanding notes issued for the purchase of silver: but Congress did not approve the recommendation. Secretary Carlisle then signed a contract with New York bankers to supply the Government with 3,500,000 ounces of standard gold coin, at the rate of $17.80441 per ounce, for 30-year 4 per cent. bonds, on condition that one-half of the coin should be obtained in Europe, and that if Congress should authorize their issue, bonds payable in gold and bearing 3 per cent. interest might within ten days be substituted at par for the 4 per cent. bonds. The President again urged Congress to authorize the issue of low-rate bonds, declaring in his message that more than $16,000,000 in interest would be saved thereby, and Congress again withheld its sanction. Under the contract the Secretary sold $62,315,000 in bonds for a little over $65,000,000 in gold. The subscriptions to this loan aggregated $590,000,000 in London and $200,000,000 in New York. Under the continuance of the business depression, Secretary Carlisle was forced early in 1896 to sell $100,000,000 of 30-year 4 per cent. bonds.
The silver question came up again in Congress, February 7, 1894, when the House Committee on Coinage, Weights, and Measures reported a bill directing the coinage of the silver held in the Treasury. A substitute by Congressman Bland providing for the coinage of the seigniorage was adopted, and passed in the House by a vote of 168 yeas to 129 nays, with 56 not voting, and in the Senate by 44 yeas to 31 nays, 10 not voting. This bill was vetoed by the President, and it failed of passage over the veto. In December, 1895, the House passed a bond bill prepared by the Republican members of its Committee on Ways and Means, and when it reached the Senate the Finance Committee reported a free silver coinage substitute, which the Senate passed, February 1, 1896, by a vote of 42 yeas to 35 nays. The House refused to concur in the substitute, and rejected it by a vote of 215 yeas to 90 nays. A few days afterwards the Senate defeated the Emergency Revenue Bill, prepared by Republican members of the House Committee on Ways and Means, and passed by the House by a vote of 205 yeas to 61 nays, the Senate vote being 22 yeas to 33 nays.
A long-standing dispute between Venezuela and Great Britain, over the boundary line between Venezuela and British Guiana, was the cause of a Presidential message to Congress in December, 1895, recommending the appointment of a commission to determine this boundary line. This message, on account of its sharp and determined tone toward Great Britain, created a great sensation. Both Houses unanimously concurred in the recommendation, and a commission was appointed January 1, 1896. (See Venezuela.) Among other events of President Cleveland's second administration were the World's Columbian Exposition at Chicago, the settlement of the Bering Sea controversy (q.v.) in 1893, the signing of treaties with China and Japan, in 1894, the extension by the President of civil-service reform (q.v.), the calling out of Federal troops to protect Government property and the mails against strikers at Chicago in 1894, the admission of Utah into the Union, in 1896, and the arbitration by the President of disputes between Brazil and the Argentine Republic, Colombia and Italy, and Brazil and Italy.
The Presidential campaign of 1896 turned principally on the Democratic demand for the free coinage of silver at the ratio of 10 to 1. There were seven tickets in the field, viz. the Republican (sound money), William McKinley, of Ohio, and Garret A. Hobart, of New Jersey; the Democratic (free silver), William J. Bryan, of Nebraska, and Arthur Sewall, of Maine; the National Democratic (sound money), John M. Palmer, of Illinois, and Simon B. Buckner, of Kentucky; the Prohibition, Joshua Levering and Hale Johnson; the Socialist Labor, Charles H. Matchett and Matthew Maguire; the Populist, William J. Bryan and Thomas E. Watson; and the Free Silver Prohibition, Charles E. Bentley and James H. Southgate. The total popular vote was 13,930,942, and the electoral, 447, of which the Republican candidates received 7,104,779 and 271, respectively, and the Democratic, 6,502,925 and 176. The Populist ticket received 144,928 votes; National Democratic, 134,731; Prohibition, 123,428; Socialist Labor, 35,306; and Free Silver Prohibition, 13,535.
XXVIII. Administrations of William McKinley (March 4, 1897-September 14, 1901) and Theodore Roosevelt (September 14, 1901). Cabinet.—Secretary of State, John Sherman, Ohio, 1897; W. R. Day, Ohio, 1897; John Hay, Ohio, 1898. Secretary of the Treasury, Lyman J. Gage, Illinois, 1897; Leslie M. Shaw, Iowa, 1901. Secretary of the Navy, John D. Long, Massachusetts, 1897; William H. Moody, Massachusetts, 1902. Secretary of War, Russell A. Alger, Michigan, 1897; Elihu Root, New York, 1899; W. H. Taft, Ohio, 1904. Secretary of the Interior, Cornelius N. Bliss, New York, 1897; E. A. Hitchcock, Missouri, 1899. Postmaster-General, James A. Gary, Maryland, 1897; Charles Emory Smith, Pennsylvania, 1898; Henry C. Payne, Wisconsin, 1901. Attorney-General, Joseph McKenna, California, 1897; J. W. Griggs, New Jersey, 1897; Philander C. Knox, Pennsylvania, 1901. Secretary of Agriculture, James Wilson, Iowa, 1897. Secretary of Labor and Commerce, George B. Cortelyou, 1903.
In his inaugural address President McKinley favored the protection of American industries, the restriction of immigration, the promotion of civil-service reform, the establishment of international bimetallism, and the appointment of a commission on currency and finance.
The Administration was concerned chiefly, however, with the war against Spain, growing out of the intolerable condition of affairs in Cuba, and with the problems growing out of the war and the acquisition by the United States of the Philippines and Porto Rico. These subjects will be found treated under the titles Spanish-American War; Cuba; Philippines; and Porto Rico.
After the abolition of Spanish sovereignty over Cuba, military government under General Brooke was established by the United States. The Cuban Army was disbanded after an appropriation by Congress for the payment of soldiers. When the volunteers were withdrawn and regular troops substituted, order was fairly well maintained. On December 13, 1899, General Brooke was succeeded by General Wood. Public schools were established, an insular treasury organized, municipal autonomy increased, and other administrative measures introduced. On November 15, 1900, a convention assembled, and a Constitution, framed on the model of that of the United States, was completed on February 21, 1901. The question of the relation of Cuba to the United States complicated the settlement of the question of the Constitution. The United States proposed: (1) that no foreign Power should be permitted to secure control in the island; (2) that the United States should have a coaling station there; (3) that the debt-contracting power of the Cuban Government should be limited; and (4) that, when necessary, the United States should interfere with an armed force to maintain the Government and Cuban independence. The proposals met considerable opposition in Cuba, but were finally accepted. On December 31, 1901, a President, Senate, and House were elected, and an executive order from Washington, March 25, 1902, provided for the evacuation of Cuba and the transference of the government to the new authorities on May 20, 1902.
Under the authority of a joint resolution of Congress, Hawaii was annexed to the United States in August, 1898. Five commissioners were appointed to investigate conditions there and recommend legislation. On June 14, 1900, under an act of Congress approved April 30th of that year, the islands were organized into a Territory of the United States. See Hawaiian Islands.
Owing to the disturbances in Samoa following the death of Malietoa, in 1899, the existing joint protectorate was abandoned, and Tutuila (q.v.) and other minor islands passed under the sovereignty of the United States, which took formal possession April 17, 1900.
On January 24, 1902, Denmark ceded to the United States the Danish West Indies for $5,000,000. The treaty was, however, finally rejected by the Upper House of the Danish Legislature, notwithstanding the extension of the time of ratification to July 24, 1903.
McKinley's administration was marked by the growth throughout the country of a strong anti-trust movement, which resulted in a large number of State laws regulating the formation and operation of large combinations of capital. In its decision in the case of United States vs. Trans-Missouri Freight Association, the Supreme Court gave an interpretation of the Sherman Anti-Trust Law, which forced the dissolution of a great association and gave a considerable impetus to the anti-trust movement. In political platforms, conferences, and party press a vigorous agitation was carried on against combinations. An Industrial Commission was created on June 18, 1898, for the purpose of investigating questions pertaining to immigration, labor, agriculture, manufacture, and business. The organization of trusts continued with increasing rapidity. During the first four months of 1899 the capitalization of these trusts was $2,000,000,000, as against $1,000,000,000 in the preceding twelve months. On February 12, 1900, an Anti-Trust League was formed at a convention in Chicago. (See Trusts.) The administration of McKinley coincided with an unprecedented commercial development.
While the great problems connected with the regulation of trusts and settlement of the dependencies were under consideration, the campaign of 1900 was inaugurated. At the Republican National Convention held on June 19th, at Philadelphia, President McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt were nominated by acclamation and the principles of 1890 reaffirmed. On July 4th the Democratic Convention at Kansas City nominated William J. Bryan and Adlai E. Stevenson, and declared against imperialism and militarism. The platform advocated Cuban independence, the preparation of the Philippines for independence, and the renunciation of American dominion over those islands. The free-silver plank was also inserted. The Democratic nominees received the indorsement of the Anti-Imperialist League, the Populist Fusionists, and the Silver Republicans. The election resulted in a complete victory for the Republicans, McKinley receiving 292 electoral votes and Bryan 155. The popular vote was as follows: Republican. 7,206,677; Democratic, 6,374,397; Prohibitionist, 208,555; Social-Democratic, 84,003; Socialist Labor, 39,537; Union Reform, 5698; Middle of the Road Populist, 50,373; United Christian, 1060.
While receiving the people in the Temple of Music at the Pan-American Exposition at Buffalo, President McKinley was shot down by an anarchist, named Czolgosz (q.v.), on September 6, 1901. After eight days of suffering, the President died at Buffalo, and on September 19th was buried at his old home in Canton.
On the day of McKinley's death Vice-President Roosevelt took the oath of office. He retained the Cabinet of his predecessor and announced his intention to continue unaltered the policy of the previous Administration.
Important measures of the two administrations which have not been mentioned above may be briefly summarized. In 1900 a currency law was passed by Congress, which defined the gold dollar as the standard of value in the United States. In the same year a civil code for Alaska was enacted and provision made for the representation of the Territory in Congress. In 1901 the army was reorganized and the ‘canteen’ (q.v.) abolished. The Fifty-seventh Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Bill, and an act for reclaiming and irrigating arid lands of the West. By a law approved March 6, 1902, the Census Office was made a permanent bureau with increased duties and facilities. In December, 1902, a reciprocity treaty was concluded with Cuba providing for mutual concessions in the customs duties. The Senate, however, ratified it only upon condition that it should not go into effect until approved by Congress. In 1903 a new Department of Labor and Commerce was created, the Secretary being made a regular member of the Cabinet. A Bureau of Manufactures and Corporations was established, with important functions of investigation and regulation, which have not as yet been tested. Laws for the reorganization of the militia and increase of the navy were passed. A general staff for the army was created. The anti-trust movement culminated in the Elkins Anti-Trust Act (1903), which requires common carriers to file tariff rates and forbids rebates, and which includes provisions and appropriations for the purpose of facilitating the prosecution of offenders.
After long and vexatious negotiations, a final convention on the Isthmian question was ratified by Great Britain and the United States on December 16, 1901, The United States was given the right to construct and police the canal; Great Britain withdrew her claim to participation in the maintenance of neutrality upon the condition that free navigation on the basis of the Suez stipulations should be guaranteed, (See Hay-Pauncefote Treaty.) On June 28, 1902, an act of Congress was approved empowering the President to acquire the rights and property of the Panama Canal Company at a cost not to exceed $40,000,000. It authorized him to purchase from the Republic of Colombia the necessary territory and to cause the construction of the canal at a cost not to exceed $130,000,000. If unable to secure a satisfactory title for this route, the President was instructed to build a canal by the Nicaragua route at a cost of not more than $189,000,000. Negotiations have been carried on with Colombia according to this act. The Hay-Herran Treaty, stipulating the terms on which the canal was to be constructed, was rejected by the Congress of Bogota in August, 1903. On October 18th Colombia proposed that the United States should pay her $25,000,000, and at the same time leave her in possession of the territory. The affair was complicated by the Isthmian revolution of November 4, 1903, which resulted in the declaration of independence of the State of Panama. The new republic was immediately recognized by the United States.
The commercial prosperity of the period was accompanied by a number of strikes, a most noteworthy occurrence in this connection being the appointment by the President in October, 1902, of a commission to arbitrate the differences between the striking anthracite miners and their employers.
In 1899 the inability of the Chinese Government to restrain the anti-foreign movement on the part of its subjects and to maintain internal order endangered the interests of the United States, as well as those of other Powers. The United States joined the other Powers in the work of restoring the Chinese Government and procuring indemnity for losses incurred. The policy of the United States throughout was the preservation of Chinese territorial and administrative unity and the maintenance of fair and impartial trade conditions. See China.
On October 20, 1899, a modus vivendi in connection with the Alaskan boundary controversy was arranged with Great Britain. After futile negotiations, in January, 1903, Secretary Hay and the British Ambassador signed a convention providing for the reference of the dispute to a tribunal of six impartial jurists. On October 17, 1903, the tribunal decided the main points of the controversy in favor of the United States, the decision being signed by the three American arbitrators, Lodge, Root, and Turner, and by the English arbitrator, Lord Alverstone. The refusal of the two Canadian members to agree with the majority was strongly approved in Canada, where the decision was received with marked evidences of dissatisfaction.
Bibliography. General Works and Physical Features. Reclus, Nouvelle geographie universelle, vols, xv.-xix. (Paris, 1890-94); Whitney, The United States Physical Geography (Boston, 1889); MacCoun, Historical Geography of the United States (New York, 1892); Sievers, Amerika, eine allgemeine Landeskunde (Leipzig, 1894); Shaler, United States of America (New York, 1894); id., Nature and Man in America (ib., 1897); Gannett, North America—United States (London, 1898); Dawson, North America (ib., 1897); Judson, The Growth of the American Nation (ib., 1897); The Physiography of the United States, ten monographs (New York, 1898); Russell, Lakes of North America (Boston, 1895); id., Rivers of North America (ib., 1898); Dupont, Notions de géographie générale et géographie physique, ethnographique, politique et économique du continent américain (Paris, 1900); Tarr and McMurry, North America (New York, 1900); Wilson, The New America (London, 1902); Brigham, Geographic Influences in American History (Boston, 1903); National Geographic Magazine (Washington, 1888 et seq.); United States Geological and Geographical Survey Reports (Washington, 1867-90); American Geographical Society Bulletin (New York, 1859 et seq.); United States Hydrographic Office Publications (Washington, 1867 et seq.).
Climate. Bell, Climatology and Mineral Waters of United States (New York, 1885); Greely, American Weather (ib., 1888); United States Weather Bureau Report (Washington, 1891 et seq.); Monthly Weather Review (ib., 1891 et seq.).
Flora. Synoptical Flora of North America (New York, 1878); Meehan, The Native Flowers and Ferns of the United States (Boston, 1878-80); Goodale, The Wild Flowers of America (ib., 1887); Beal, Grasses of North America, vol. ii. (London, 1886 et seq.); Michaux, North American Silva (Boston, 1887); Newhall, The Trees of Northeastern America (New York, 1891); id., The Vines of Northeastern America (ib., 1897); Sargent, The Silva of North America (Boston, 1891 et seq.); Britton and Brown, Illustrated Flora of Northern United States (New York, 1896-98); Heller, Catalogue of North American Plants (Lancaster, 1900); many articles in United States War Department Reports of Exploration to the Pacific (Washington, 1856); United States Division of Botany Report (ib., 1893 et seq.).
Fauna. Audubon, Birds of America (New York, 1840-44); Agassiz, Contributions to Natural History of United States (Boston, 1857); Cassin, Baird, and others, The Birds of North America (Salem, 1870); Wallace, Geographical Distribution of Animals (New York, 1876); Goode, American Fishes (ib., 1888); Coues, Key to North American Birds (Boston, 1887); Maynard, Manual of North American Butterflies (ib., 1891); id., Wild Fowl of North America (ib., 1898); Jordan and Evermann, Fishes of North and Middle America (Washington, 1901-02); Apgar, Birds of the United States (New York, 1890); Ridgway, The Birds of North and Middle America (Washington, 1901-02); Howard, The Insect Book (New York, 1901); Dyar, List of North American Lepidoptera (Washington, 1902); Stone and Cram, American Animals (New York, 1902).
Geology. Tarr, Economic Geology of the United States (New York, 1894); Geikie, The Great Ice Age (ib., 1895); Powell, Canyons of the Colorado (ib., 1895); Russell, Volcanoes of North America (ib., 1897); id., Glaciers of North America (Boston, 1898); Weeks, “Bibliography and Index of North American Geology,” in United States Geological Survey Bulletin 130 (Washington, 1892-93); United States Geological Survey Bulletins (ib., 1884 et seq.); United States Geological Survey Monographs (ib., 1890 et seq.); Journal of Geology (Chicago, 1893 et seq.); also Dana's Manual of Geology, 4th edition; American Geologist (Minneapolis); Bulletin of Geological Society of America.
Mining. Mineral Resources of the United States (annual, Washington); Rothwell, The Mineral Industry, Its Statistics, etc., in the United States and Other Countries (annual, New York); Kemp, The Ore Deposits of the United States (New York, 1893). Agriculture. Report of the Department of Agriculture (Washington); Oetkin, Die Landwirtschaft in den Vereinigten Staaten (Berlin, 1893); Levasseur, L'Agriculture aux Etats-Unis (Paris and Nancy, 1894); Rousiers, La vie americaine: ranches, fermes et usines (Paris, 1899). Forests. Mayr, Die Waldungen von Nordamerika (München, 1890); Bruncken, North American Forests and Forestry (New York, 1900). Manufactures. Bagnall, Textile Industries of the United States (Boston, 1893); Wright, The Industrial Evolution of the United States (Meadville, Pa., 1895); Rocheleau, Great American Industries (Chicago, 1898); United States Industrial Commission Reports (Washington, 1900 et seq.); Jeans, American Industrial Conditions and Competition (London, 1902); Lawson, American Industrial Problems (Edinburgh, 1903); Goldberger, Das Land der unbegrenzten Möglichkeiten (Berlin, 1903); Taussig, Tariff History of the United States (New York); Reports of the Commissioner of Labor (annual, Washington); Report of the Twelfth Census, vol. x., “Manufactures” (Washington, 1902).
Commerce: Transportation. Poor, Manual of the Railroads of the United States (London, 1868 et seq.); Ringwalt, Development of Transportation Systems in the United States (Philadelphia, 1888); Depew, 1795-1895. One Hundred Years of American Commerce (New York, 1895); Vanderlip, The American Commercial Invasion of Europe (ib., 1903); United States Treasury Department Report on Commerce and Navigation (Washington, 1844 et seq., 1888 et seq.); United States Interstate Commerce Commission Report (ib., 1888 et seq.); United States Special Consular Reports ( ib., 1890 et seq.); United States Foreign Commerce Bureau Report (ib., 1856 et seq.).
Government. Tocqueville, On Democracy in America, trans. by H. Reeve (London, 1889); Bryce, The American Commonwealth (ib.. 1893-1895); Scudder (editor), American Commonwealths (Boston, 1884 et seq.); Howard, Local Constitutional History of the United States (Baltimore, 1885); Giddings, Democracy and Empire (New York, 1900); Ostrogorski, Democracy and the Organization of Political Parties (ib., 1902); Zueblin, American Municipal Progress (London, 1902); Wilson, The State (revised edition, Boston, 1901; first issued 1889).
Finance. The best work on the history of the United States finances is Dewey, Financial History of the United States (New York, 1903). Consult also Bullock, Finances of the United States, 1775-1789 (Madison, 1895), and Noyes, Thirty Years of American Finance (New York, 1898). For statistics, consult Reports of the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, 1789-1849, and Report on the Finances, issued annually, beginning with 1849. Statistics of the finances may also be conveniently obtained from the Statistical Abstract of the United States, first issued 1878.
Defense. Nelson, The Army of the United States (London, 1897); Annual Reports United States War Department (Washington, annual); Kelly, The American Navy (ib., 1897); Spears, History of Our American Navy (New York, 1897-99); Morris, The American Navy (London, 1898); Marvin, American Merchant Marine (ib., 1902); Long, The New American Navy (New York, 1903); United States Navy Department Annual Reports (Washington, 1822 et seq.); United States War Department Annual Reports (ib., 1845 et seq.).
Immigration. Report of Commissioners of Immigration (Washington).
Education. Boone, Education in the United States (New York, 1889); Butler, editor, Education in the United States (Albany, 1900); Four American Universities (New York, 1895); Gilman, University Problems in the United States (ib., 1898); United States Commissioner of Education Reports (Washington, 1867 et seq.).
History. For more or less elaborate bibliographies, consult: Winsor, Narrative and Critical History of America (Boston, 1886-89); Larned (ed.), The Literature of American History. A Bibliographical Guide (Boston, 1902); Channing and Hart, Guide to the Study of American History (ib., 1896); and Adams, Manual of Historical Literature (New York, 1889).
Standard works are the histories by Bancroft [to 1789] (revised ed., New York, 1883-85); Hildreth [to 1821] (revised ed., ib., 1882); Bryant and Gay (last ed., ib., 1896); Winsor (supra); McMaster [from the Revolution to the Civil War] (New York. 1883—); Schouler [to 1865] (id., 1899); Rhodes [from the Compromise of 1850] (ib., 1893—); Henry Adams [during the administrations of Jefferson and Madison] (ib., 1889-91); Von Hoist, The Constitutional and Political History of the United States (new ed., Chicago, 1899); Curtis, Constitutional History of the United States (New York, 1889-96); Thorpe, The Constitutional History of the American People 1776-1850 (Chicago, 1898); Wilson, History of the American People (New York, 1902); vol. vii. of the Cambridge Modern History (Cambridge, 1903); and the works of Parkman (q.v.), and of John Fiske (q.v.).
On the Colonial period consult, besides several of those already mentioned, Doyle, The English in America (London, 1882-87); Lodge, Short History of the English Colonies in America (New York, 1881); Tyler, History of American Literature 1607-1765 (rev. ed., New York, 1897); Palfrey, Compendious History of New England to the First General Congress of the Anglo-American Colonies (Boston, 1865-73). For further references see bibliographies under the titles of the various States. On the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812: Fiske, The American Revolution (1891); Botta, History of the War of the Independence of the United States (8th ed., New Haven, 1840); Trevelyan, The American Revolution (London, 1899); Carrington, Battles of the American Revolution (New York, 1876); Roosevelt, The Naval War of 1812 (ib., 1882); and Maclay, History of the United States Navy from 1774 (ib., 1897-1900). Further references are given under titles of different battles, and of men prominent in the two wars.
For further references to works on the history of the United States, see the bibliographies to special articles, such as Loyalists: Mexican War; Civil War; Confederate States of America; Reconstruction, etc.; and the bibliographical notes appended to articles on the various States, and to biographical sketches of prominent men.
- No report prior to 1900.
- For hay, tons.
- Includes essential oils.
- Includes trade with Alaska, Hawaii, and Porto Rico.
- Brigadier-general. Josiah Harmar was a lieutenant-colonel commandant and brigadier-general by brevet.
- Records, Adjutant-General's Office.
- Includes population of Indian Territory and Indian reservations.
- The city of Brooklyn was consolidated with New York City in 1898.
- Figures include Indians in Indian Territory, but not those on other reservations.
- Figures do not include 91,219 persons in military and naval service.
- The Postmaster-General was not regularly a member of the Cabinet until 1829.
- Until this time the Navy had been under the general direction of the War Department.
- Jacob Crowninshield of Massachusetts was nominal Secretary of the Navy from March 3, 1805, till his death, April 15, 1808, Robert Smith continuing to discharge the duties of the office.
- The Postmaster-General first came to be a regular member of the Cabinet in Jackson's administration.
- He could buy as much as four milllon dollars' worth if he so desired.