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deavored to show, there are good reasons for believing that the railways are only beginning to understand and adopt the policy which draws the largest amount of revenue, not from high fares, but from low fares.

But far more powerful than any casual impediments which may occur to the progress of railway prosperity, is the more confirmed establishment every year in the babits and tastes of the people, and throughout the whole industrial system of the country, of a disposition to rely more and more on the new means of rapid transit for a constantly expanding class of large and small results. The generation which had been trained to consider the old modes of locomotion as adequate to every end is fast dying away; and a new generation is coming into full vigor, of whom it may be affirmed that in few things does it differ more from its predecessors than in the full and implicit faith which it places in the improved modes of transport.



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STEAMBOAT NAVIGATION OF THE UPPER MISSISSIPPI. The following table shows the date of opening, date of closing, and consequent length of each season of navigation at St. Paul, from 1844 to 1857 inclusive, and the number of arrivals of steamboats at that place during each season :

No. of

Length of Year,

First boat. arrivals. River closed. 1844. April 6 41 November 23

231 days. 1845.

April 6 48 November 26 234 1846.

Mar'h 21 24 December 5 245
April 7

47 November 29 236 1848.

April 7 63 December 4 241 1849.

April 9 95 December 7 242 1850.

April 9 104 December 4 239 185!.

April 4 119 November 28 238 1852.

April 16


November 18 216 1853.

April 11 200 November 30 233 1854.

April 8 256 November 27 223
April 17

560 November 20 217
April 18

887 November 10 212

May 1 1,026 November 14 198 It is thus seen that in 1857 the season was shorter by two weeks than in 1856, when it was shorter than in any year before. The Pioneer and Democrat, of St. Paal, in publishing this statement, estimated that this unexpected shortness, combined with the financial revulsion, cut off nearly 100 arrivals. However, the number of arrivals in 1857 was 189 more than in 1856. The number of boats in the trade in 1857 was 98, being an increase of 20 over 1856. The number of arrivals from each place was as follows :Arrivals from 1857. 1856.

1857. 1856. Dubuque.... 123 138 St. Louis,

156 212 Prairie du Chien..


213 228 Pittsburg

27 Fulton. 65 28

734 622 To Minnesota River......

292 216

1855. 1856.. 1857....

Arrivals from


Total ..........

1,026 838 The total for 1856 includes 18, estimated, from Cincinnati (6) and Prairie du Chien (12.) The number from Pittsburg in 1856 (perhaps 6) are included under St. Louis. There was, therefore, in 1857 a great increase of trade with distant points. There was also an increase in the departures to the Minnesota River, (viz., 76 over 1856,) and the boats running on that river carried large amounts of goods during the whole season. The “wharfage" collected in 1857 amounted

to $9,085, against $1,690 in 1856. This great increase was caused by the passage of a new wharfage law, charging wharfage by tonnage instead of a stated sum upon each boat, which we believe was $3. The change was in accordance with the practice of all river ports situated at the termination of steamboat trips, and the rate fixed per ton was lower than in Galena and St. Louis. Of this sum, the Galena and Minnesota Packet Company paid about $5,000, and this company was the only objector to the new law.

STEAMBOATS to St. Anthony.—The St. Anthony Express gives the names of 13 steamboats that made trips to that town the past season-making 47 trips, and landing 5,175 tons of merchandise.

BUSINESS OF THE DISMAL SWAMP CANAL-TRADE OF NORFOLK. The Dismal Swamp Canal, like the Dismal Swamp through which it passes, is partly in Virginia and partly in North Carolina, and forms the principal part of the avenue of communication between Hampton Roads of Chesapeake Bay of the former and Albemarle Sound of the latter. Although planned (incorporated) in 1790, it was not made and put in operation until 1822, and after that it was enlarged and widened. It is 224 miles long, and extends from Deep Creek, a tributary of Elizabeth River, Va., (10 miles from Norfolk,) to Joyce's Creek, a branch of Pasyuotank River, N. C.

The following is a statement of its dimensions when completed subsequent to 1823, and which we believe are now the same : - Width at top, 40 feet; depth, 61 feet; width at turn-out stations, at intervals of one-fourth mile, 60 or 66 feet; rise and fall of the main canal, 33 feet, making the summit level 161 feet above mid-tide in the Atlantic Ocean ; the locks, 5 double oncs, 100 feet long by 22 wide, well constructed of hewn stone. Thus the canal readily passes vessels of 70 or 80 tons burthen, drawing 7 feet water. It has two branches. A navi. gable feeder, 5 miles long, serves to supply the main trunk of the canal from Lake Drummond (which is 15 miles in circumference, and occupies the central portion of the great swamp.) The Northwest Canal is a branch, 6 miles long, extending to the Northwest River, and this wholly in North Carolina. The total cost of the company's canals and appurtenances, from the commencement to September 30, 1854, was $1,151,006 71, of which the sum of $631,066 71 was income thus appropriated.

At present the canal is chiefly valuable as an avenue for the transportation of lumber, naval stores, etc., produced in the regions through which it passes, and these are sent to Norfolk, etc., and exchanged for provisions, etc. The tolls for the last four years, each ended September 30, were

1867. 1856. 1865. 1854. Inward.

$10,972 31 $14,732 74 $14,775 30 $ 16,669 24 Lumber

18,966 64 17,073 63 18,628 55 20,582 54 Outward.

4,801 91 5,124 32 6,077 61 5,791 10 Road.....

974 52

760 10 953 92 Northwest Canal..

1,144 59 782 32 864 21 881 96

..... toll

853 22


$36,828 97 $38,566 23 $40,105 77 $44,959 36 The tolls for the last year are over $1,700 less than the preceding year, owing principally to the shortness of the corn crop, and a still greater failure of the fisheries. In the fiscal year of 1855, 1,165,146 bushels of corn passed through the canal; in 1856, 1,300,206 bushels, a considerable increase. For this last

fiscal year, 1857, only 745,564 bushels of corn passed throngh, a decrease of 554,642 bushels, not very far from one-half. In 1855, 30,057 barrels of fish passed through the canal. In 1856 there was a failure in the fisheries, and there was only 16,456 barrels. In 1857 there was a still further decrease, only 14,761 barrels having passed through.



RULE first. When steamers are meeting each other, the signals for passing shall be one sound made by the steam-whistle to keep to the right; and two sounds made by the steam-whistle to keep to the left; and these signals shall be observed by all steamers, whether by night or by day, or whether in a narrow or a wide river; and no such vessel shall be justified in coming into collision with another if it can be avoided.

RULE SECOND. When two steamers are about to meet each other, it shall be the duty of the pilot of the ascending boat to sound his steam-whistle once, if he shall wish to keep his boat to the right; and it shall be the duty of the pilot of the descending boat to answer the same promptly by one sound of his steamwhistle, and both boats shall be steered according to such signal ; or if the pilot of the ascending boat shall wish to keep his boat to the left. he shall sound his steam-whistle twice; and it shall be the duty of the pilot of the descending boat to answer promptly by two sounds of his steam-whistle, and both boats shall be steered according to such signal; should the boats in meeting be likely to pass near each other, and the signals should not be made and answered by the time they shall have arrived at the distance of eight hundred yards from each other, the engines of both boats shall be stopped ; or should the signal be given and not properly understood from any cause whatever, both boats shall be backed until their headway shall be fully checked, and the engines shall not be again started ahead until the proper signals are made, answered, and understood.

RULE THIRD. When two boats—the one ascending and the other descending —are about to enter a narrow channel at the same time, the ascending boat shall be stopped below such channel until the descending boat shall have passed through it; but should two boats unavoidably meet in such channel, then it shall be the duty of the pilot of the ascending boat to make the proper signal, and to lie as close as possible to the side of the channel he may have selected, and either stop the engines or move them so as only to give steerage way; and the pilot of the descending boat shall answer such signal, and shall cause the engines of his boat to be worked slowly until he shall have passed the ascending boat. RULE FOURTH.

When a steamer is ascending and running close on a bar or shore, the pilot shall in no case attempt to cross the river when a descending boat shall be so near that it would be possible for a collision to ensue therefrom.

RULE FIFTH. No pilot of a descending steamer shail run down any island chute which is not the usual channel of the river, except such chutes as may hereafter be designated by the Board of Supervising Inspectors; which designation, when go made. shall be considered a part of this rule, and shall be and continue in force until the same shall be changed or modified by action of said board.

RULE SIXTA. When any steamer, ascending or descending, is nearing a short bend or point in the river, where, from any cause, a steamer approaching in an opposite direction cannot be seen at a distance of six hundred yards, the pilot of sach steainer, when he shall have arrived within six hundred yards of such bend or point, shall give a signal by one long sound of his steam-whistle as a potica to any steamer that may be approaching; and should there be any approaching steamer within bearing of such signal, it shall be the duty of the pilot thereof to answer such signal by one long sound of his steam-whistle, when both boats shall be navigated with the proper precautions, as required by rule second.

ROLE SEVENTH. When a steamer is running in a fog or thick weather, it shall

be the duty of the pilot to sound his steam-whistle at intervals not exceeding two minutes.

These rules shall be in full force and effect on and after the first day of January, 1858 ; but all pilots of boats to whom they are previously delivered shall be governed thereby from and after the time of such delivery.

EXTRACT FROM STEAMBOAT ACT APPROVED AUGUST 30, 1852. Section 29. Should any pilot, engineer, or master of any such vessel neglect or wilfully refuse to observe the foregoing regulations, any delinquent so neglecting or refusing shall be liable to a penalty of thirty dollars, and to all damage done to any passenger, in his person or baggage, by such neglect or refusal ; and no such vessel shall be justified in coming in collision with another if it can be avoided.

Sec. 9. Ninth clause. The license of any such engineer or pilot may be revoked

upor proof of negligence, unskillfulness, or inattention to the duties of his station. WM. BURNETT,




Isaac LEWIS, Joun S. BROWN,


A. WALKER, Supervising Inspectors of Steamboats.


SPINNING SEED COTTON INTO YARN ON PLANTATIONS. Among the awards of the American Institute, at its fair of October, 1857, was that of a large silver medal to Major George G. Henry, of Mobile, Alabama, for his “improved combinations of machinery for manufacturing seed cotton into yarns on the plantations of the South.” The machine upon which this award was given had been in practical operation during the fair, and had attracted great attention. The two first-named gentlemen whose signatures are attached to the official report of the Institute Committee, we understand, are familiar with cotton manufactures, and with machinery, and the latter is a large cotton planter. The peculiar construction of the announcement of the award, might mislead the public as to the character of the machinery. It is not merely a machine“ to manufacture yarns for plantation use," as the announcement reads, but “it is a combination of machinery for plantation use," where the whole process, from the cotton gin to the yarn manufacture, is combined, doing the whole work perfectly, and giving the planter bis yarn for market instead of the cotton merely, thus doubling his income, and adding but a trifle to his expense, beside the outlay for the machinery, which is not large.

REPORT OF THE PREMIUM COMMITTEE OF THE AMERICAN INSTITUTE. The undersigned, members of the Committee on Improvements, Discoveries, and Inventions, beg leave to report that they have examined the machinery effecting the improvement in the manufacture of yarns, for which Mr. George G. Henry, of Mobile, Alabama, has obtained a patent, and of which he is the proprietor ; and they find that it effects its purpose in a manner both complete and convenient.

A gin, constructed so as to act in connection with a lapper of a cotton factory, and a lapper, constructed to act in connection with a gin, are made, and form one machine. We have seen seed cotton very leafy and trashy fed to it, and it ging the cotton from the seed, and the brush throws the lint on the cylinder of the

lapper, which passes it continuously to the beater, and this again throws the cotton to another cylinder, and this passes the cotton through rollers, which finally rolls it on a beam, and makes a lap; and, in this form, is prepared for the cards. The gin is so constructed that the feed can be enlarged or diminished.

We have also seen clean cotton fed to it, and a lap obtained as before described. Our attention was called to the fact, that even in running the very leafy and dirty cotton through this machine, the usual dust and flying of the gin, or of the devil or lappers of the factory, was not discernible. The brush of the gin throws leaf and motes down as usual, and the beater also does, but it is very obvious that this machine does not break up and pulverize the fiber to the poiut it takes it in the preparation, as it is broken up and pulverized by the machinery used in the factories to bring it to the same point or lap. To illustrate this

, we may remark that the adoption of this improvement obviates the necessity for the machinery and labor of packing the cotton in bales on the plantation; and the willow, the devil, or set of the spreaders and beaters, the preparation or breaker card of the factory, by which not only the labor of working them, and the power required to run them, is economized, but such cotton as is wasted in the process of packing or sampling, or is thrown out broken up by the willow, the devil, the spreader and beater, and the breaker cards, (whose employment is excluded by this process,) must also be saved.

On examining the laps from both the dirty cotton and the clean cotton, we observe that, in consequence of the exclusion of this machinery, the fiber is not stringy, tufted, or convoluted, but lays open and loose, leaving for the finishing card obviously lighter manipulation to complete the carding than is required of the cards by the factory process. And the result is, as the fiber passes by this process immediately from the lap, continuously, to the cards and drawing, roving and to the spindles, avoiding the use of those machines necessary in the factories to open and disentangle it, which are very violent in their operations, the yarn must necessarily be made of longer and less broken staple, and be, therefore, a stronger and better yarn. As to the cost of the machinery, it, of course, will be lessened to the extent of the portion excluded. The labor saved will be the boisting seed cotton on the plantations into the second or third story of gin houses. (as this machine will be arranged on the ground floor,) the labor of packing the cotton bales, the labor of sampling, the labor of attending the machines of the factory, which are excluded, and also the power those machines demand, which is altogether a material figure.

Another important advantage which this improvement presents is, that the danger of fire, now so terrible at the cotton gin houses, from lint cotton in it, is removed, as no lint cotton of any consequence will be ever in this spinning room ; and also the danger from the burning of cotton factories is, in a great measure, almost entirely removed, as the devil or picker (which is here excluded) is the machine which occasions the most of the fires at the factories.

Then, as the cotton planter will only require to buy the machinery and hire a spinner, making surplus labor available which he now has to attend the machine. ry, having already the location, the power, and seed cotton. Knowing the wide difference between the value of ginned cotton and spun yarn, we see no reason why this improvement in the manufacture of yarns shall not be rapidly adopted, and add a very important sum annually to the wealth and resources of the country.

We have carefully read Mr. Henry's description of his improvement and its advantages, which we accompany with this, and respectfully submit it as a part

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New York, November 30, 1857.

IMPROVEMENT IN THE MANUFACTURE OF PLATE GLASS. The United States Manufacturing and Plate Glass Company, have in use a new machine intended to perform the grinding and polishing power. It is the

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