Page images
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]




, the system upon which these ryots are compelled to labor, is a systein of slavery. The tenure by which the lands are held, and the entire control over the culture which is exercised by the English planters, constitute a system which, in everything but the name, is slavery. The production of Indigo is disliked by the natives, for several good reasons. The crop is a delicate and precarious one, both as to quantity and quality, and requires great skill in the management. It demands minute attention and excessive exertion, and is, moreover, very uncertain in its results—the difference in the return of the drug, from the same quantity of plant, being in different years excessive. The peasantry have no other than a nominal, rental right to the soil which they cultivate; and they are kept poor enough to submit to almost any terms of culture which the actual landowners, or planters and speculators who act under them, are induced by their own interests to impose. To overcome the prejudice of the natives against the culture of indigo, the English planters, or indigo factors, have for hall a century resorted to a custom of making advances to the ryots, and thereby tempting them

in the production. The indigo factories in Bengal are numerous, and some of them are conducted upon a very large scale. The factors supply the seed of the indigo plant, and furnish the money necessary for the cultivation to the farmers, who bind themselves to deliver to the factor by whom they are thus supplied, the whole number of plants they produce, at a stipulated price, which of course is low enough. For every rupee, we believe, the ryot has to furnish four to eight bundles of indigo. This bargain is involuntary on the part of the ryots, and unjustly throws upon them the whole risk ; for in case of a failure of a crop, from a bad season or other accidental cause, the advance debt runs into the following year, when the farmers have to cultivate without any money at all. This unequal contract, as will be seen, may become exceedingly oppressive to the farmers, who, in relation to the factors, are forced into the position of debtors, and compelled to deal year after year exclusively with the same party, and under circumstances which invite injustice and oppression.

Within a few years the price of rice has advanced, while the Bengal peasants have been compelled to continue the cultivation of indigo at low rates. Their lands and labor have been employed in paying off old debts at low prices of indiyo plants, while high profits might have been gained by the production of rice

. At length the patience of the poor ryots has given way, and oppression and the sting of poverty have goaded them to open rebellion. They have refused to fulfill their engagements with the planters, and have strack work and assembled in bands, to compel others to abstain from the cultivation of indigo altogether

. In pursuance of this determination, some outbreaks have been committed, in resisting which the factors had killed several of the insurgents. It Was necessary that the seed should be sown before May, to insure a crop. Cnless the rrots could be compelled or induced to sow, or to allow the seed to be sown, it was supposed that a million pounds sterling would be lost, and advances of a million more irretrievably sacrificed. In the emergency, the planters applied to the government of India for aid, and a very stringent, but temporary, law bad been passed, for enforcing the fuifillment of the indigo contracts. This law provides that any man who has received cash on promise to sow indigo, and dors not sow, may be fined five times the amount and imprisoned. It also provides for the punishment, by imprisonment, of such as shall instigate breach of con

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

tract, or spoil growing crops. Large bodies of military police and irregular cavalry have been ordered into the disturbed districts to support this law. This was the state of the war at the last accounts.

The difficulties attending the production of indigo--some of which are illustrated by this strike of the cultivators in Bengal—are so great as to threaten a general diminution in the use of the article. Indeed, there seems to have been no increase in the quantity produced for the last thirty or forty years. There has been a material discontinuance of blue in articles of dress, and a consequent decrease in the consumption of indigo. It is still produced in Central and South America, but in diminished quantities. From San Salvador, (where the plant grows in great perfection,) Honduras, Nicaragua, and Venezuela, it is yet, however, an important article of export. San Salvador, fifty years ago, threw 1,800,000 lbs. into trade. Not half that quantity, probably, is now produced there. Twenty years ago the value of indigo produced in Venezuela was about $600,000. Ten years ago the production had dimipished to about one-third of that value. It is produced in greater or less quantities in St. Domingo, (where, at one time, there were no less than three thousand indigo plantations.) in the Philippine Islands, in China, in Mauritius, in French India, in Egypt, in Morocco, &c.; but nowhere so extensively as in Bengal, where it constitutes the chief item of export, its value being equal to nearly one-half of the total exports to Europe from the province. The number of indigo factories in Bengal is not far from five hundred.



Galignani's Messenger contains the following :- About a year ago we tioned, without attaching much credit to it, an empirical rule, by which the weather might be predicted with tolerable certainty during the last 24 or 25 days of a month, from that which prevailed during the former ones. This rule is now, however, again brought forward, with such additional arguments in its favor as to induce us to return to the subject. It appears that it was the late Marshal Bugeard who discovered it, in an old Spanish manuscript; he was struck with the great number of observations from which it had been deduced, extending over more than fifty years, and resolved to verify it himself. The result of his observations was so satisfactory, that he soon got into the babit, in Algeria, of consulting the rule on all occasions when some important military or agricultural operation was in contemplation. The rule is as follows:-“Eleven times out of twelve, the weather will, during the whole lunation, be the same as that which occurred on the fifth day of that moon, if on the sixth the weather was the same as on the fifth. And, nine times out of twelve, the weather of the fourth day will last throughout the moon, if the sixth turns out to be like the fourth.” The marshall used to add six hours to the sixth day before pronouncing on the weather, in order to make up for the daily retardation of the moon between two passages across the meridian. It is clear that this rule may not be always applicable, there being nothing to prevent the sixth day from being quite different from the fourth and fifth. M. de Coninck, of Havre, has just published his observations, continued for ten months, and which completely confirm the rule.


LONGEVITY IN ENGLAND, We find in an English publication some interesting statistics in regard to the duration of human life in England. The article has evidently been prepared with great care from official documents, and is no doubt as correct in its conclusions as is possible to be upon a subject so intricate and mysterious. The writer commences with the following remarks :-"A human being born with a sound constitution is calculated to live seventy years or upward under favorable circumstances; but, as we well know, all of us are surrounded more or less by circumstances unfavorable to life, by which, practically, our term of years is liable to be greatly shortened.”

Existence, as to duration, is proverbially the most uncertain of all things, and this, because from its ignorance, incautiousness. and accidents, life is constantly coming into collision with the conditions calculated to destroy it. The conditions unfavorable to life come into operation before the human being has seen the light. They continue in operation throughout the whole of its appointed period; so that, out of any large number born, a certain proportion die in the first year, a certain proportion in the second, the third, and so on until all are gone--only a certain comparatively small number attaining the full age which nature promises to sound life maintained in favorable circumstances.

It appears that during the eighteen years from 1813 to 1830, there were registered as burried in England and Wales 3,938,496 persons, of whom 1,942,301 were females.

Of the whole number, 778,083 died before reaching the age of one year, while 266,443 died at that age, and 320,610 whose age was over one and not above five, making a total of deaths at the age of five years and under of 1,354,000, or a little over a third of the whole number. There appears to have been a greater fatality between the ages of twenty and thirty than between those of thirty and forty or forty and fifty.

The number that died between the ages of pinety and a hundred was 35,780, of whom 24,183, or over two-thirds, were females ; 1.899 persons, or one in each twenty-one hundred that died, reached the age of one bundred and upward. The oldest death was a male of one hundred and twenty-four years. Two males and one female each reached the age of one hundred and twenty; one male, one hundred and nineteen ; one male, one hundred and eighteen ; one female, one hundred and seventeen ; two females, one hundred and fourteen; one male and one female, one hundred and thirteen ; one male and one female, one hundred and twelve; eighteen persons reached the age of one hundred and ten; eighteen, one hundred and nine; twenty eight, one hundred and eight; thirty-four, one hundred and seven ; forty-six, one hundred and six ; one hundred and one, one hundred and five; one hundred and thirty-one, one hundred and four; one hundred and ninety-seven, one hundred and three ; two hundred and forty, one hun. dred and two ; three hundred and fifty-eight, one hundred and ove; and seven hundred and seven, one hundred. The last mentioned age was reached by two hundred and thirty nine males and four hundred and eighty-six females--nearly two to one in favor of the latter. VOL. XLIII.-NO. 1.




GERMAN POPULATION, The German element of the federal population is approximated in some tables given by the New York Herald, based upon the official reports of numbers annually arrived, and estimating their increase at 14 per cent per annum up to the date of the census of 1850. The results are as in the following tables. The result shows what is called the German "element" as being 30 per cent of the whole white population. This is assuming that all the Germans have intermarried, and that their progeny retains its German affinities. This is, however, far from being the case. The number of persons in the United States at the date of the census, born in Germany, was 1,242,082, or rather less than 30 per cent of those given above as “ Germans.” Inasmuch as that the increase of most branches of the European families is about in the same ratio, the German element must remain in the proportion of their arrivals, which is about one-half the number of those who arrived from the United Kingdom. The population of Germans to those who were native in 1820, and the arrivals from other countries is only one-eleventh. The increase of Germans and natives of other nations cannot be defined unless the intermarriages are known. The tables are, nevertheless, useful. SYNOPTIO TABLE, SHOWING TRE PERCENTAGE AND THE NUMBER OF THE GERMAN POPOLATION IN THE UNITED STATES IN 1850.

Total Percentage Total No. No. States.

population. of Germans. of Germans.

583,169 19 110,770 2 New Hampshire..

317,976 10

31,797 3. Vermont...


28,269 4. Massachusetts..

994,514 22 218,900 5... Rhode Island.

147,545 11

16,280 Connecticut

370,792 14

51,910 7. New York....

3,097,394 17 526,490 8. New Jersey

489,555 15

73,870 Pennsylvania..

2,311,786 49 1,132,773 10. Delaware..

91,532 13

11,899 11. Maryland..

683,034 28 163,244 12.... Virginia

1,421,661 24 199.024 13 North Carolina


78,210 14.... South Carolina


60,165 15.... Georgia....

906,185 10

90,652 16.... Florida


3,496 17.... Alabama.

771,623 13 100,308 18.... Louisiana

517,762 13

67,201 19.... Mississippi

606,526 10

60,652 20.... Kentucky....


225,952 21.... Tennessee.....

1,002,717 30

300,810 22... Missouri

682,044 43 300,080 23. Arkapsas

209,897 87

77,700 24. Texas

212,592 40

84,086 25.... Ohio ...

1,980.329 47 930,741 26.... Illinois.

851,470 42 342,468 27.... Michigan.

397,654 42 166,992 28.... Wisconsin

305,391 40 122,160 29.... Indiana....



395,360 30... Iowa...


84,568 31.... California.

92,597 27

24,975 District of Columbia..

51,687 16





[ocr errors]






[ocr errors]



German cento

Year 1950. population. Germ'ns. Total population of the United States..... 23,191,876 5,688,620 24 Total white population of the United States.. 19,553,068 5,688,620 30 Total federal representation.

21,767,673 5,478,610 26 Total population in the nine Northern States.. 8.626,851 2,190,589 25$ Total population in the twelve Slave States.... 8.508,436 1,360,679 15 Total population nine Western States...


1850 TO 1860.


Irish, 45,738 117,038 1856.

56,117 43,985 1851, 79,510 163,256 1857

86,859 57,106 1852. 118,674 118,611 1853

31,874 25,097 1853 119,498 113,164 1859

27,858 34,846 1854.

179,618 82,302 1855.

54,038 43,043 Total....... 799,844 798,459 ESTIMATE OF THE NUMBER OF GERMAN POPULATION IN THE YEAR 1860. German population in 1850..

5,688,620 Natural increase by the surplus of births, 14 per cent per annum*

853,290 Increase by immigration since 1850.....

799,844 Increase of the immigration in ten years, at 14 per cent per annumt.. 119,970


Total of Germans in 1860.....


23,191,876 Natural increase by the surplus of births, 14 per cent per annum.. 8,378,681 Increase by immigration during the last decenvium....

2,456,543 Increase of immigration at 14 per cent per annum.

368,480 Probable total population in 1860..

29,395,677 The German population amounts in 1860 to nearly twenty-five per cent of the total population of the United States, and to 27 per cent of the total rep. resentative population. TABLE SHOWING THE INCREASE OF POPULATION IN SEVERAL STATES AFTER THE YEAR OF



per year States.

Pop. in 1850.

- Population in

per cent. New York....


1855.. 3,446,212 2 Massachusetts..


1,132,369 2 4-5 Alabama

771,623 1855.

841,704 1 4-5 Florida.....


110,823 65 Georgia



1,014,418 Louisiana.


616,971 2 4-5 Illinois..


1,306,576 10 1-5 Michigan...


511,672 8


331,213 7 Wisconsin.


552,451 8 Iowa. ...

192,214 1859.

633,549 231 92,597

507,067 751 * The increase by the surplus of births is estimated at 15 per cent in ten years, according to conbuses in Gerinany, which show in Prussia, Saxony, Bavaria, and Wurtemberg an increase from 13 to 174 per cent in a decennium. + The increase of immigration by the surplus of births is estimated twice as high as the regular increase of settled population, because the immigrants are, in the great average, men and women in the prime of age.

The percentage given here is not the progrossive percentage, but only the percentage of the population of 1850.



1859.... 1855...



« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »