Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

Practical Annexation of England...

129

Prison Discipline. Reports of Prison Association of New-York..
Papers of an Old Dartmoor Prisoner. Edited by Nathaniel Hawthorne.141, 209
Political Statistics. Oregon Treaty-Tariff Bill, and Vote thereon in the
House-Land and Treasury Note Bill, and Vote-Warehousing Bill,
and Vote-Land Graduation Bill, and Vote..

State Elections...

66

66

154

414

495

Congressional Elections..

Political Portraits with Pen and Pencil. Silas Wright, of New-York.... 349
Do. Zadock Pratt, late Member of Congress from the State of New-
York...

472

Reasons Why the Aspect of Society in England and the United States
must be Radically and Permanently Different. By Junius Smith.... 25
Do. No. II.

217

Page
3

55

Sonnets. By the Author of the "Yemassee," &c. .47, 140, 202, 302, 391, 471
Some Translations from Uhland. By William Allen Butler...
Slaves and Slavery. 1st. Message of the President, transmitting to Con-
gress Despatches from the American Minister at Brazil. 2d. Report
of the Secretary of State, with Correspondence of S. W. Slacum, late
U. S. Consul at Rio Janeiro. 3d. Parliamentary Debate on Sugar
Duties...

Travels in North America. Travels in North America. By Charles
Lyell, Esq., F. R. S.

The New-York Constitutional Convention,.

The Goddess of the Beautiful-A Bohemian Legend,.

The Norseman's Ride, ..

The Infelicities of Intellectual Men,..

The Welcome Rain-Translated from the High German of Herr Nie-
mand of Weisnichtwo.....

The Writings of Charles Lamb: An Essay. By J. W. Shelton..
The Tariff-Its History and Influence..
The Old Arm-Chair that Rocks so Easy.

The Indian Lover...

The Elements of Morality; including Polity. The Elements of Morality;
Including Polity. By William Whewell, D. D., Author of the "His-
tory and Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences," &c.... ......273, 385
The Broken Heart-A Tale of Hispaniola. By S. Anna Lewis, author of

"Records of the Heart,".

Memoirs of the Admin-
Edited from the Papers

243

Which is the Fortunate Man? By Miss Anna Middleton..
West Point. By H. T. Tuckerman...

113

123

163

192

272

312

339

365

368

378

The Results,..

The Administrations of Washington and Adams.
istrations of Washington and John Adams.
of Oliver Wolcott. By George Gibbs,....

426

The Natural History of New-York. Natural History of New-York. By

Authority,...

433

The Autobiography of Goethe. Truth and Poetry; from My Life.
Translated from the German of Goethe. Edited by Parke Godwin,. 443
To the Ocean. By Mrs, J. W. Mercur...

452

Upward! By J. Bayard Taylor....

442
48

121

400
419

What is Truth? 1st. Acts and Resolutions passed at the first session of
the 29th Congress of the United States. Published by Authority. 2d.
Sections adopted at the New-York Constitutional Convention..

267

[blocks in formation]

THE great feature of the modern world is the growth and power of the Anglo-Saxon race. More particularly since the commencement of the present century have their numbers multiplied with a rapidity that astonishes the observer. In the 46 years which have elapsed since the 18th century reached its close, the Anglo-Saxon race, properly so called, have increased 120 per cent. Their wealth, prosperity and social condition have improved in a much greater ratio. The race is now divided into nearly equal parts, one of which, in the possession of great political power, occupies the British islands, and from them sways the commercial world. The other inhabits the continent of North America, and will soon absorb the whole in one vast union, from whose bosom the British islands must thereafter draw their supplies of food, and become measurably dependent for the elements of their power. The natural limits of British greatness appear to have been reached; that is, the greatest number of persons that her resources can feed, occupy her islands, and those persons exercise the greatest possible power that is permitted to one nation in modern times. If the Anglo-Saxon race on this continent is destined to reach wealth and power as much greater than those now enjoyed by England, as the breadth of land here occupied is larger than the British

No. XCVII.

islands, then indeed might the nations of Europe have cause for alarm, were it not for the peaceful nature of our institutions. The Anglo-Saxons on this continent are now equal in number to those in Great Britain, and in a few years the latter will bear but a small proportion to the whole number.

The great improvements which have been made in science have prodigiously increased the means of subsistence in the British islands; and the increase of the population, great as it has undoubtedly been, is yet subordinate to the enhanced production. The latter, by outrunning the population, has afforded to the laboring classes luxuries and even comforts that formerly were unknown to the richest lords. The proportion of food produced in the British islands to the whole number of the people is doubtless much larger than formerly, but at the same time there is a larger and increasing number who suffer more than formerly, because the tendency of laws and the structure of society has been, to accelerate the natural accumulation of property in the hands of a few at the expense of the many. The population of the British islands, exclusive of Ireland, has increased from 10,472,048 in 1800, according to the census then taken, to 18,664,761 in 1841, being an increase of about 80 per cent. in 40 years. In the same time the number of the

French people rose from 27,349,003 to 34,194,875, or 25 per cent. only. The United States, peopled by the same race as Great Britain, have in a similar period multiplied their numbers of white inhabitants from 4,304,489 to 14,575,998, or 320 per cent., having nearly doubled every 20 years. The population of the United States has indeed been mostly of the Anglo-Saxon race, but it has received constant accessions of French and Germans, who mix with and are finally lost in the swelling numbers of the whole mass. The British Islands have lost to some extent by emigration, and most of that which they have lost has been a direct gain to America. The decennial increase per cent. of the population of the United States, as compared with that of England, has been for the first 40 years of the present century as follows:

1800-10. 1810-20. 1820-30. 1830-40. United States....36.2....34.3......33 8.....34.7 British Islands.. 14.2....17.6......15.5.....14.0

occupied, and each successive tract overrun is apparently more fertile than the other. The area of Great Britain is the same now that it ever has been; that is to say, 55,291,788 acres, or 86,439 square miles. On this extent of surface, as we have seen, the population has increased 8,192,713 souls or 80 per cent. in 40 years, or 94 persons to each square mile. Or, in other words, from a population of 118 to the square mile in 1800, the density has increased to 210 to the square mile in 1840. In the United States the greatest density is in that of Massachusetts, eighty-six to the mile. To maintain this increase, the highest skill and science in agriculture, added to the most unremitting industry and perseverance, has been requisite in England. It is self-evident, however, that there is a point beyond which this increase cannot take place; that how great soever the productive powers of the English soil may be made through the aid of science, ultimately the wants of the population, through increasing numbers, must exceed those powers. This appears now to be nearly the case. Every portion of the soil of Great Britain, capable of bearing food advantageously, has been pressed into that service. It is true that there are still maintained in England a large number of cattle, Of horses alone there are 1,330,000, on which duties are paid; to feed which, an extent of soil equal to that which will suffice for the sustenance of 10,000,000 human beings is required; but these horses are, to a very considerable extent, necessary in the conduct of internal business, and indispensable as yet to the trade which supports the manufacturing population. How far those services may be superseded by steam is a question. It is, however, probable that steam may so far supply the place as to make an increase in their numbers to facilitate a growing trade unnecessary; and, indeed, as the home supply of food has now become insufficient for the support of both animals and human beings, in consequence of the excess of their demands, it would seem that the maintenance of the former would become yearly more onerous. The surface of England may be pretty accurately divided into three sections, viz: 10 manufacturing and mining counties, 13 metropolitan and

From 1810 to 1820, which embrace the period of the last war, it appears that the ratio of increase in the United States diminished, while that of the British islands improved. Since that period the actual increase of the population of the United States has become more considerable, while that of the British islands has decreased 34 per cent., having been for the ten years ending with 1840, slightly less than in a similar period ending with 1810, during a general war. These facts seem to support the theory that the increase of population must always depend upon the increase of food and other necessaries, and can never, for any considerable period, exceed that increase. As far as high science and great capital go, England has the advantage of the United States in facilities for enhancing the means of subsistence; nevertheless her population feels annually the increasing restraint upon its growth consequent upon the deficiency of food, and the existing distress manifests itself in the swelling number of paupers, who now, according to a Parliamentary statement, reach 1,500,000 souls. While England has thus encountered in her onward progress an insurmountable barrier to her continued advancement, the United States have constantly added to the quantity of land

partially manufacturing counties, and 19 exclusively agricultural counties. The official returns show that the rural population of England has not increased since 1700, a period of 140 years, during which the other classes of society have increased near 300 per cent.

The population of the several divisions of England that we have named are as follows:

POPULATION OF ENGLAND.
1800.

Counties.
1700.
Agricultural.. ..2,029,800 2,670,337
Manufacturing.....1,113,900 2,528,773
Metropolitan.. .2,002,700 3,130,054 5,587,560

5,146,400 8,331,164 14,957,146

1840. 4,059,114

for food, even if the latter could continue to supply the demand. The landowners must now reduce their profits to enable England to maintain her markets. The manufacturing greatness of the British islands has outgrown their capacity to feed the operatives. The Anglo-Saxon race in England, like a hot-house plant, is confined in too small a vessel; it has become restricted in its growth, and requires to be transplanted to a broad and genial soil. This has been done. The climate and soil of the Uni5,310,472 ted States were peculiarly suited to the development of their vigorous growth. On this continent the breadth of territory and its resources are as limitless as the untiring enterprise of the people. Their escape from the restraining limits of the narrow islands and unjust laws of Britain, has been followed by a vigor of growth never before equalled by any people; and this progression has been marked by an accession of territory in a ratio nearly as great as that in which their numbers have multiplied; that is to say, the white inhabitants of the United States have increased 10,271,509, while Great Britain has added but 8,192,713 to her population since 1800. In this period, the land brought into cultivation in Great Britain has been 3,621,770 acres, as returned by the inclosure bills before Parliament. On this continent the area of the states in 1800 was 473,770 square miles. There has since been added, exclusive of Texas, 814,810 square miles, making an area of represented states at this time equal to 1,288,580 square miles, or 15 times the area of Great Britain. Nearly all the land so occupied and settled is, in its natural state, of a description more fertile than any which the high culture of England can exhibit. Prairies containing millions of acres of rich black loam several feet deep are but entered upon, and still waiting the physical force which i yet to accumulate for the cultivation of vast spots, most of which, after an annual succession of 200 crops, yield wheat as rankly and vigorously as in the first few years of their subjection to the service of civilization. The people of the United States are essentially agricultural in their pursuits, and the unrivalled advantages which nature has afforded have by no means been neglected. The most invaluable

The returns of the population of the towns and cities show that the increase of the agricultural counties has been principally in the towns, so that the rural population of England, as in the agricultural counties of Scotland, appears not to have increased at all since 1700, at least not materially. The same number of the tillers of the earth, the productions of whose industry fed 5,146,400 persons in 1700, is now required to feed 14,957,146, without counting the increase of cattle, which is probably equal to five millions more persons. This excessive demand has been supplied by pressing into the service every possible tillable piece of ground, and calling the highest science to aid in its cultivation (the latter has mainly compensated for the small increase of manual labor.) The traders and manufacturers have increased seven millions since 1700, and five millions since 1800. These have produced that manufactured wealth which has laid the world under contribution to British industry. The physical well-being of the masses of the people has not, however, proportionably improved. The master manufacturers have divided with the land-owners the whole profits of the industry of these people. What little money the former have paid for labor, the latter have demanded for the food supplied from their lands. This collusion of interests worked well, as long as the manufacturers did not experience in third markets any active opposition. But European competition has so reduced the money prices of goods, that manufacturers can no longer pay sufficient wages to feed their workmen at the old prices demanded by land-owners

tracts of land have been spread before à fearless, enterprising, and energetic race, almost without money and without price. The choicest lands of the western valleys have been at the command of every man; and they have flocked thither to enjoy them, not only from our own Atlantic states, but the islands of Britain and the distant countries of Europe have poured forth their thousands to occupy and subdue the prairies of the west. The census returns of the United States show, that of the increase of the population since 1820, 80 per cent. are agriculturists; the remaining 20 per cent. are engaged in commerce, mining, manufactures, and trades. This is the reverse of that process which has been going on in England, and also in Europe. The same causes which have operated so powerfully in England to cause the demand for food to outrun the local supply, have also been actively at work in diminishing that surplus supply in Europe to which England formerly looked to make good her own occasional deficits. These causes are the powerful impulses that have been given to manufacturing industry, by which the number of agricultural producers has been diminished and the consumers increased. The former have also been lessened by the number of agricultural emigrants who leave the worn-out lands and the profitless servitude of noble owners in Europe to tread their own prolific farms in the western valleys of America. The countries of Europe during the past year, which has indeed been one of bad harvests, have not yielded more than sufficient for their own wants. The surplus of one section has not more than sufficed for the deficit of another; and, although the demands of England, which subsequent to 1837 were annually large, were last year small, the price of grain throughout Europe has been higher than perhaps ever before, and grain is now much cheaper in the United States than in any other country; that is to say, in the great grain markets of the north of Europe for May, the price of wheat averaged $1.40 per bushel, and in New-York 90 cents. At Odessa, the great centre of the Black Sea grain trade, it was $1.00 per bushel, and the demand good to supply the wants of Italy and the Mediterranean.

Not only has the demand for food increased with the progress of manufactures and the extension of railroads throughout Europe, but the application of capital and science to agriculture, and the improvement in implements, have been insufficient to compensate for the decay of the land. -The constant and long cropping of the best lands in the wheat districts of Europe has, united to a barbarous system of culture, reduced them to a state of comparative sterility. It has long been known that the continued exportation of corn from any country will exhaust the soil, unless there is imported in return articles which may be converted into manure in some degree to compensate for the injuries so inflicted. Many parts of the north of Africa and of Asia-Minor that were formerly depended upon by Europe for large supplies of grain, are now irretrievable deserts. The system pursued in Prussia and Poland, of raising two crops of corn in succession, administering nothing to refresh the soil but a fallow, will ultimately exhaust the best land. For near two centuries Poland has continued to export large quantities of bread-stuffs, without receiving from abroad anything that could be converted into nutriment for the soil. The quantities exported, for periods of 25 years each, with the price at the close of each period, in Dantzic has been as follows:

[blocks in formation]
« AnteriorContinuar »