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looked, or valuable document omitted. The efforts of the Confederacy to secure the cooperation of foreign powers, and of the United States to prevent it, are summarily presented in the letters and instructions of the respective diplomatic agents.

In thus preparing in a narrative form this portion of the events of the year, although the effort has been made to observe strict accuracy and impartiality, some mistakes may have occurred, which ask for the forbearing consideration of the intelligent reader.

The developments of science during the year present some interesting particulars. The assent of geologists to the Taconic system advocated by the late Prof. Emmons, after so many years of disbelief, is another instance of the triumph of investigation over preconceived errors. The introduction of the method of Solar analysis, which has as yet progressed hardly so far as to receive a name, although Spectrography meets with much approval, may justly be classed among the important events. The conclusions of science, as applied to agriculture, which were reached during the year 1861, will become to the farmer of great practical value. At the same time, they set aside many opinions and processes of labor which have not yielded fruitful results. They will be found fully explained in a very practical essay from the pen of Prof. J. J. Mapes.

Geographical explorations were pursued with vigor in various quarters of the globe, and many travellers returned from their perilous journeys of a previous year. In all instances the information is highly interesting, and often valuable.

Connected with mechanical industry there were many ingenious inventions during the year, especially relating to implements of war, some of which have been described, while others are reserved, to be accompanied with such illustrations as more ample time will allow. To mechanical industry, so important in this country, an extensive portion of the annual volume of this

work will be devoted.

The commerce of the whole world was interrupted during the year, and although sufficient time has not elapsed to gather the statistics of all its changes, yet the details of disaster to many branches have been made up in these pages. The stupendous resources of the United States, hitherto unconsciously possessed, not only in military and naval affairs, but especially in financial, have been brought to light by the present difficulties. The financial measures of the Government and of the States are explained with the most ample details.

The number of distinguished men who closed their career in 1861 was not so large as in many other years. A tribute has been paid to their virtues and their services.

Subsequent volumes of this work will be issued about the first of March in each year.



ABDUL MEDJID, KHAN, late Sultan of Turkey, born May 6, 1822, succeeded to the throne July 1, 1839, died June 25, 1861. Educated in the seclusion of the harem, and coming to the throne at the early age of 17, and possessing naturally a kindly but indolent and almost effeminate nature, it was hardly possible that he should have become an efficient ruler over an empire so extensive, and peopled by races so diverse, even in the most favorable period of its history. But his accession to the throne took place at a time of unusual commotion, and when the strong arm of a wise and vigorous ruler could hardly have saved the empire from disintegration and ruin. His father had been a man of great energy and iron will, and had initiated reforms which, in the opinion of the more fanatical Moslems, struck at the very foundations of their faith. The ill-concealed hostility of the mass of the Mohammedan people to these reforms would have awed a less resolute ruler than Mahmoud II., and his death leaving his reforms but half accomplished, encouraged the hopes of the reactionary party. Nor were there wanting other causes of anxiety to harass the mind of the boy sultan. Mehemet Ali, Pasha of Egypt, his most powerful vassal, had placed himself in an attitude of open rebellion during the lifetime of Mahmoud II., and his son, Ibrahim-Pasha, on the 24th of June, 8 days previous to Abdul Medjid's accession to the throne, had defeated the sultan's troops in the decisive battle of Nezib. The interference of the allied powers alone prevented the Turkish empire from dismemberment at this juncture.

This danger passed, the young sultan applied himself to the development of his father's plans of reform. The first step in this direction was the promulgation of the Hatti-Scherif of GulKhané, in Nov. 1839. This Hatti-Scherif was a general decree in the nature of a bill of rights, declaring the equality of all his subjects, whether Mussulmen or not, before the law. Its intention was more fully developed in the subsequent measures, now included under the name of the tanzimat, or system of reforms. The


most important of these measures were: the reorganization of the army in 1843 and 1844, the creation of new ministerial departments of commerce and public works, the reorganization of the provinces, the promulgation of a penal code and of a code of commerce, the establishment of mixed tribunals allowing Christians a share with Mussulmen in the administration of justice, the introduction of a new monetary system, the abolition of the Kharadj, or capitation tax, previously levied on all who were not Mussulmen; the reform of the system of public education, and the introduction of postal service, railroads, telegraphs, the regulation of quarantines, the establishment of banks, &c.

These reforms were at first put in force in the capital, and thence extended gradually to the remoter provinces. Not being in the nature of absolute decrees, but rather suggestions for reform, whose stringency was to be increased as the people would bear them, they were at first of little effect, except immediately in the vicinity of the capital. In Sept. 1854, desirous of giving them a wider scope and a more decided efficacy, the sultan called a council of tanzimat, or congress of representatives from all parts of his empire, and laid before them his measures. On the 18th February, 1856, he issued a new Hatti-Humayoum or imperial decree, conforming and enlarging the propositions of the Hatti-Scherif. These measures indicated the progressive disposition of the sultan, and his desire to become an efficient ruler. They were undertaken under circumstances of great difficulty; from the commencement of his administration to its close, there was constantly some disturbing element to delay or thwart his purposes: the Turko-Egyptian question at the commencement of his reign, and subsequently the Servian question; the insurrection in Albania; the war in Koordistan ; the troubles in Syria, in Bosnia, and Montenegro; the Turko-Greek and Wallachian revolution of 1848-'9; his noble refusal to surrender the Hungarian and Polish refugees, who had sought protection on his soil, to Austria and Russia in 1850; the question of the holy places

which led to the Crimean war; the attempt to assassinate him in 1859; and the Syrian massacres of 1860, were all so many obstacles to his progress. To these might also be added his natural indolence and love of sensual indulgence, his infirm health and his yielding disposition, which made him often the helpless prey of the dissolute ministers and the rapacious harem which controlled him. He has been succeeded by his brother, Abdul Aziz Khan.

AGRICULTURE is the art of cultivating the earth in order to increase the quantity and improve the quality of its productions.

The practical farmer should be able to raise from a given number of acres, the largest quantity of the most valuable produce, at the least cost, in the shortest period, and without permanent injury to the soil; and therefore the great problem which the present age has to solve, is the discovery of the means of producing on a given area, a larger amount of bread and meat to supply the wants of a continually increasing population.

The object of these remarks will not be to give any history of agriculture, but rather to show the advantages which have arisen from the application of the sciences to its practice, until it may now be truly said, in its present status, to compose a science in itself, embracing the operation of the natural laws in their most extended sense, and covering, as part of its accessories, much of geology, chemistry, etc.

We shall aim rather to demonstrate that which experimental theories have culminated during the last few years into exact knowledge, than to give descriptions of the leading and more prominent improvements in agriculture as an art. It is now well understood that all known primaries are to be found in the soil, itself being chiefly composed of the debris of rocks, whence have arisen all of the primaries, except those which have existed in more dilate forin, as in the atmosphere.

For a long time it was supposed by chemists that the analyses of plants and soils would furnish a sure guide to the farmer in his selection of the amendments requisite to the production of crops. Recent investigations, however, prove that these primaries, as found in the ashes of a plant, differ materially in their functions, from the same primaries existing in the rock or in the soil, unless they have been redeposited in the soil by the decay of organisms; that each primary, when taken up and appropriated by a plant, and then restored again to the soil by the decay of the plant, possesses functions which are entirely distinct from those belonging to a primary before its entrance into organic life: and thus arable soils are composed in part of inorganic matter which belonged originally to the rocks, then to the soil, then formed a part of organic life, and on being restored to the soil, became ready to act as pabulum to a higher organism; and that each time a primary so enters into organic life, it takes new functions and qualities not belonging to its original condition,

and not recognizable by analyses or microscopie investigations. Thus we find that the feldspar rock, containing seventeen per cent. of potash, when ground to the finest powder, will not supply potash directly to the higher class of plants-still a rock containing feldspar will furnish potash to those of a lower class, such as the lichens and mosses, etc.; and on their decay it returns to the soil in a progressed or advanced condition, capable of being assimilated by a higher class of plant.

It is for this reason that, while ground feldspar fails to prove a valuable amendment to soils, requiring additions of potash, unleached wood ashes so readily furnish plants with this necessary alkali.

The same truth is observable with phosphate of lime, so readily assimilated by plants when furnished in the form of animal bones, even after they have been heated to redness, so that the phosphate of lime which they contain is freed from all surrounding matters.

This same substance, without any differences which may be recognized by the chemist, is found in large quantities in what is known as the phosphatic rocks, and some of them contain ninety-five per cent. of pure phosphate of lime; still when this is ground to a powder it will not be assimilated by the roots of plants in contact with it; and many soils formed in part of the chlor-apatite rock require additions of more progressed phosphate before their cultivation can be rendered profitable.

The same may be said of lime, for although primitive limestone when burnt so as to render it caustic, is valuable to the farmer as a means of disintegrating other materials in the soil from its chemical effects, yet lime so furnished will not form direct food for plants, while lime arising from organic decomposition is readily assimilated by them.

Two thousand bushels of lime, made by burning limestone rock of Westchester Co., N. Y., applied to a single acre, will render the land sterile for many years, itself forming less than two per cent. of the weight of this soil to a depth of fifteen inches.

There are many chalk farms, however, in England, containing forty per cent. of carbonate of lime, (which is the form which the Westchester lime assumes before the farmer uses it;) but this latter (chalk) has its origin in organic decay, and therefore is readily assimilated by plants to the extent they require lime to form part of their ash when burned; and the quantity in excess is not unfriendly to surrounding vegetable growth.

Indeed this principle is true of each and all the primaries in nature; thus, old soils which have been fairly and properly treated, are more fertile than new ones. As a general principle, therefore, it should be understood that, in the selection of fertilizers, those taken from the refuse of factories, etc., or at least from the highest organic sources, should be preferred.

Many of the ingredients in the soil have the

power of absorbing and retaining ammonia and
other gases consequent upon organic decay,
which are brought down with rains and dews
from the atmosphere, and these give to water
the power of dissolving much larger quantities
of inorganic matter than can be taken up by
positively pure water. Of the ingredients hav-
ing such power, the chief are carbon and alu-
mina: were it not for the presence of which in
the surface soils, the decay of organic life would
not be retained for the use of forthcoming crops,
but would filter downward and render every
well and spring a cesspool.

So perfect is the action of these materials
that one per cent. of either or both, disseminated
through a soil to a depth of 12 inches, is quite
capable of abstracting from fluids, during their
downward course, most of those substances re-
quired to sustain plant life; and recent discov-
eries are quite sufficient to assure the agricul-
turist that he need not fear the loss of ma-
nures by downward filtration. A pure gravel
or positively pure sand are the only exceptions
which are practically to be met with, and these,
overtopped by a loam to an ordinary depth, will
never receive from the upper soil any solutions
which would be valuable to plant life, unless
such solutions be added in quantities far be-
yond what would ever be applied in practice.
Were it not for this law, all the progressed and
more soluble portions of organic life would have
passed towards the earth's centre, leaving the
surface sterile and incapable of sustaining man.
The full understanding and appreciation of this
fact may be fairly registered as belonging to
the year 1861; for, although before suggested,
it has not been generally admitted and under-
stood until this time.

In the mechanical operations upon the soil, while agriculture was pursued simply as an art, the farmer merely knew that a disturbance of the surface produced increased results-but he now understands the laws on which such increase depends.

Rains and dews may be viewed as the natural means of cleansing the atmosphere, taking therefrom all the volatile exudations of organic life and restoring these to the soil for reassimilation. We find the atmosphere at all times containing certain proportions of these gases, and during droughts the quantity held in at mospheric suspension is materially increased. The first half-pint of rain, falling on the roof of a house, during a shower, will be found so highly charged with ammonia, sulphuretted hydrogen, etc., as to emit a peculiar odor; consequently the water from dews and the early parts of showers is more valuable to farmers than that furnished by continuous rains. To fully avail of this effect, the soil should be deeply disintegrated so as to permit the atmosphere permeating the soil to deposit its moisture upon the surface of the colder particles beneath the surface of the soil. We all know that a glass vessel containing ice or cold water, if placed in the sun's rays at midday, during


droughts even at midsummer, will be speedily covered on its outer surface with drops of wa ter, which of course are condensed from the atmosphere; for if the soil be dry the atmosphere must contain moisture, however dilate, as there are but two places in which it can exist, viz., the earth and the atmosphere-its quantity at all times must be constant. In the same way, then, the surfaces of particles of soil colder than the atmosphere, are capable of receiving a proper degree of humidity, which in turn is capable of absorbing all the gases from the atmosphere requisite to render the moisture a more perfect solvent of the inorganic food required to sustain plants: in this state, and in this only, can plants receive it-they cannot take up inorganic matter unless in solution, and no plant can grow without its reception. All these necessary conditions may be secured by Underdraining and Subsoil-ploughing.

Underdraining.-This consists in burying beneath the soil, in a proper manner, a series of tubes or pipes, so made as to be capable of receiving from the soil any excess or surplus of water it may contain, and leading it to lower points whence it may be discharged and find its way to outlets. For the method of constructing underdrains, we would refer the reader to the recent works of Judge French, Klippart, and others. The best specimen of practical underdraining with which we are acquainted, may be found at the Central Park, New York.

Millions of acres of apparently valueless soils have been rendered capable of profitable cultivation by underdraining. Drains have been made of stones, porous pipe, tile, wooden tubes of various kinds, etc.; but practice has proved that the ordinary draining tile, made of unIt is also glazed burnt cay, forms the safest and most efficient and durable underdrain. ascertained that the tiles laid at a depth of five feet, in soils where underdrains may be so deeply constructed, produce results better than those attainable by drains of less depth. These drains should be at such distance apart as to thoroughly remove all excess of water from the soil, and in so doing, they insure full aëration. Both ends of each drain should be open to and at the surface, producing a continuous draft of air always passing through them, and as the atmosphere is warmer than the soil, the heat rising during its horizontal travel passes into and through the soil, materially elevating its temperature-it also secures motion to the air in the soil, which, in passing between the particles, supplies the necessary amount of humidity, and with it those gases which guarantee all the chemical changes required to furnish the inorganic food to plants.

The chief advantages of underdraining may be summed up as follows:

"Underdrained soils never suffer from drought," provided that the subsoil be disintegrated as in the process known as subsoilploughing. Less manure will suffice for crops.

The after disintegration of the soil is more readily and cheaply performed. Its temperature is increased, and therefore a longer season of growth is secured. The best proof of the usefulness of underdraining, however, is to be found in the fact that the English Government, and many chartered companies and individual capitalists, have freely loaned money on mortgage to English farmers for the purpose of underdraining their soils, and that these mortgages are only active after a valuation-in other words, the mortgages only bear upon the increased value of the soil consequent upon underdraining. After the expenditure of millions of pounds sterling in this way, scarcely an instance can be found where the income of the farmer has not been increased sufficiently to enable him to pay his underdrainage mortgage, leaving him an increase of profit ever after, while the nation at large is permanently rendered wealthier by the system. Indeed it is doubtful if England could at this time sustain her population, were it not for the increase of crops consequent upon the underdraining of the land.

Subsoil-ploughing.-It is only within a few years that the process of subsoil-ploughing has been rendered practicable, for although known for many years as a needed improvement in the culture of soils, the tools presented for such use were inadequate, until the invention of the lifting subsoil-plough, by the writer of this article. This implement is known as Mapes' lifting subsoil-plough, and is formed of a lozenge-shaped wedge of steel, point forward, like a spear-head laid horizontally, and forming a series of inclined planes, gradually rising from the point to its bridge or highest part, being an elevation of only five-eighths of an inch. This horizontal wedge is sustained to a beam by two curved knives placed vertically, and by these means, as with other plough-beams, the instrument is propelled in the usual manner. In practice, the surface-plough precedes the subsoil-plough, moved by a separate team. The subsoil-plough follows with its beam in the bottom of the furrow, thus disintegrating to a depth of 12 inches or more, beneath the bottom of the surface furrow, raising the soil five-eighths of an inch, and in so doing, causing the separation of particle from particle, as in the soil over an ordinary moletrack, but to a width, at the surface, of twenty inches, and this disintegration is more perfect than between the particles of a soil turned over in a furrow-slice, as with the surface-plough.

The subsoil-plough insures to the subsoil full depth for the travel of roots, also permitting the entrance of atmosphere; the surface loam is consequently gradually deepened to any required depth; for while the loam as a new soil, may have a depth of but 6 inches, and the farmer is constrained to that depth of surfaceploughing; still, by the use of a subsoil-plough, he may disintegrate without elevating the subsoil, which will gradually change by atmospheric and other influences into a loamy soil, so

that, in after ploughings, the depth of the surface furrow may be increased. Grass lands previously underdrained and subsoil-ploughed, never run out, and the full ratio of crops may be maintained for any length of time, by slight topdressings, of such amendments as have not yet been progressed from the soil itself.

Where subsoiling and underdraining are not practised, mowing-lands and pastures are continually lessening in their products, so that the farmer is compelled every few years to take his land out of grass, and carry it through a series of rotation of crops, before he can reëstablish a grass crop. The foregoing may be considered as an epitome of the greater improvements connected with the proper mechanical preparation of the soil, together with the necessary rationale for comprehending the causes of the benefits to be derived therefrom; and all other and after manipulations are but the presentation of the same desirable conditions to the surface soil, in a more minute and extended manner, so as to avail of the same laws more rapidly and effectively. No farmer can reasonably expect to avail of the largest amount of profit, who has not prepared his surface and subsoil in the manner we have indicated; for, be his surface cultivation what it may, and the use of fertilizers ever so liberal, his profit will not be as great as that of his neighbor whose farm is underdrained and subsoil-ploughed.

Fertilizers.-In old times, farmers sometimes suffered their land to remain without crops for the purpose of enabling it to gain in fertility. This was accomplished by the slow reception from the atmosphere of gases capable of enabling the moisture in the soil to dissolve new quantities of the inorganic constituents, storing them up until, by their accumulation, the soil was again capable of bearing crops. This was called fallowing. The modern improvements, however, of underdraining and subsoil-ploughing, will secure all the advantages of the fallowing system, and in a much shorter time; for it is now admitted that "the true rest of the soil is a judicious succession of crops." This result is farther accelerated by presenting to the soil the necessary food for plants in a progressed shape, of organic origin, so that the growing crop is fed independently of the soil in place; therefore permitting it, as in the following process, to augment the quantity of plant food rapidly; for it must be understood that moisture is enabled to dissolve increased quantities of each of the inorganic constituents, when the roots of a growing crop are present. In the use of fertilizers, the farmer should not inquire, "with how small a quantity can I create a crop?" but rather, "how large a quantity may I use with increased profit?" for, with an increased quantity, not only does he increase the amount and quality of a current crop, but he leaves the soil increased in productiveness for the future.

Manures of the farm.-These are of the first importance, and require the greatest amount of care for their proper manipulation, admixture,

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