Слике страница

many democrats as whigs-at present the Judges all belong to one political party.

The term of office of the Judges of the Court of Appeals is said to be too short.

ion, and together with the Governor and Chancellor. formed that body, and the Council exercised a qualified negative upon all bills passed by the Senate and Assembly.

Under the present Constitution, the Supreme Court is composed of three Judges, any one of whom may hold the Court. The Judges are appointed by the Governor and Senate, and hold office until they respectively arrive at the age of 60 years. There are also 8 Circuit Judges who are appointed in the same manner, and hold office for the like term. The Supreme Court Judges as well as the Circuit Judges are restricted from holding any other office or public trust, yet notwithstanding this inhibition, the Legislature have vested the Court with the power of nominating and appointing Street Commissioners in certain local districts. This power has been greatly abused.

The new Constitution provides that there shall be at least thirty-two Supreme Court Judges which shall hold office for eight years, and be elected in eight Judicial districts. The Judges are prohibited from holding any other office or public trust, and are also prohibited from exercising any power of appointment to public office.

The New Constitution abolishes the Court of Chancery and vests the Equity Jurisdiction in the Supreme Court. Under the present Constitution the Circuit Judges in seven of the Judicial Districts ex ercise the power of Vice Chancellors.

Objections are urged against this mode of selecting Judges, by electing them, on the ground that in competent persons may be designated as candidates. The elections are not frequent, and therefore it will be no hardship for intelligent citizens to exert themselves to have good men put in nomination. Judges elected in the manner provided for in the New Constitution will be of different political parties, and not all of one political party as is now the case. The Court for the Correction of Errors afford an illustration as to elected Judges-the decisions of the elected members of that Court are entitled to as much respect as those of the Chancellor and Judges of the Supreme Court which are appointed officers. The decisions of the Supreme Court, and Court of Chancery have been various and fluctuating, and much dissatisfaction existed-and such as to call loudly for the abrogation of the old system, and for an endeavor to substitute something better.

The County Courts under the present Constitution were held by Judges appointed by the Governor, with the consent of the Senate.

The nominations were made by the Governor on the recommendation of others. Under the new Constitution a County Judge is to be elected by the voters in each county in this State, (except the county of New York,) who shall hold his office for four years, and perform the duties of Surrogate. In counties having a population exceeding 40,000, a Surrogate shall be elected.

The laws of our State are enacted by elected members, and our adjudications are made by elected Judges for the decisions of the Court for the Correction of Errors, are binding on all the Courts below it; therefore if the Inferior Courts are held by appointed Judges, their decisions must be in accordance with the law as interpreted by the eletced Judges.

This is the great feature of both Constitutions, and the distinction is without a difference.

Under the new Constitution the Judges will be of all political parties, and there will probably be as

The Judges of the United States Courts are appointed for a term to continue during good behavior. These Courts have been approved by the people after a fair trial, and it is to be regretted that the Convention had not followed such a successful experi


The review of other departments of the Government we will take up in their order in future numbers of our Journal.

There is an opinion extensively entertained by many citizens of high standing, that Judges of high Courts should be made independent, and for that reason should be appointed for life, or during good behavior, and should be paid liberal Salaries. There is much good sense in the suggestion, but there are difficulties even in this.Judges who are appointed for long terms, may become arbitrary and substitute their will for the laws of the land. It is wisely suggested in the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, that, "In order to prevent those, who are vested with authority, from becoming oppressors, the people have a right, at such periods and in such manner as they shall provide in their frame of Government, to cause their public officers to return to private life, and to fill up vacant places by certain and regular elections and appointments."

This doctrine thus solemnly laid down in the chart of civil liberty of that ancient Commonwealth, is worthy of the place it occupies, and the sentiment expressed is full of instruction. Our State Convention in framing the new Contitution have given heed to this doctrine, by providing that the Judges of the high Courts shall be elected for eight years.—Experience is said to be the best Schoolmaster in every department of life, and the saying is as good, as it is old; but experience in adjudications consists mostly in becoming familiar with the rules and practice of the courts. The law of the land is the paramount consideration, and the Judge should be sufficiently intelligent to understand its import, and he is equally bound to obey it, as the most humble citizen. It is the duty of a Judge to expound the law, but the making of law is ths business of the Legislature. Much of our difficulty, remarks a most eminent jurist, arises from Judicial Legislation. If the Courts usurp the power of both making and executing the law, then the balances of Government become distorted, and instead of the Executive, Legislative and Judicial branches being a check, one upon the other, the whole power of the three becomes concentrated in the one, forming what may be termed a judicial despotism.

We have in our State, Farmers, Mechanics and Merchants, who are able to determine the requirements of the Statute and understand its import as well as Lawyers. Our law is enacted by Legistors composed of every class of ocupations. It requires the same ability to frame a law that it does to interpret it.

Questions come before Courts for their judgment and decision involving matters which Farmers, Mechanics or Merchants may be able to form a better judgment of what is right and just, than a Lawyer.

It is not always the ablest Lawyers that are appointed Judges of Courts, and this fact alone is a most conclusive argument in reference to the preference of this mode of selecting Judges It often happens that men are appointed to an office, which were the office an elective one, they would be unable to obtain it.

It follows therefore that there is no form of Government but what has its advantages and disadvantages.

It is after all, the man who makes the Judge, and not the Judge who makes the man.

The population of our State is rapidly increasing and the increase is much of it from the flow of population who are ignorant of our laws, aud such a state of things increases the business of Courts.


The New York Journal of Commerce of the 23d of October, instant contains the following:

"ERUPTIONS OF MOUNT HECLA, AND SHOCKS OF AN EARTHQUAKE.-A letter from Copenhagen, of the 21st Sept., says:-'We have just received news from Iceland to the 18th, and from the Ferroe Islands to the 25th ult. Never in the memory of man has there been a more disagreeable summer than the present. Torrents of rain and storms succeeded each other without intermission. The measles and the dysentery carried off almost the fourth of the inhabitants, especially on the coasts, which caused the cultivation of the island to be paralyzed, and the fishery, which otherwise would have been most abundant, to be neglected. The bad weather prevented the Danish, German, French, Belgian and English savans from pursuing their researches into the state of Mount Hecla, but they have decided on passing the winter in Iceland, in order to profit by the cold and dry weather, to carry on their investigations. Towards noon on the 22d ult. there was a sudden and violent eruption of Mount Hecla, the commencement of which was accompanied by several shocks of earthquake, extending to a radius of about three miles, (seven French leagues.) The eruption lasted about forty minutes; the flames rose to an immense height, and all the country around the volcano was covered with a thick layer of ashes.'"

The Brooklyn Evening Star of August 22d contains the following:

"TEMPERATURE.-During the present month, thus far, we have had three equilibriums, viz: the evening evening of the 2d and 3d, 12th and 13th, and 20th and 21st." E. M. The New York Journal of Commerce of October 23d contains the following:

"A MARYLAND EARTHQUAKE."-The Boonsboro' (Md.) Odd Fellow states that about 9 o'clock, on Sunday night last, a singular rumbling noise, accompanied by a shock that shook the windows, was evidently the shock of an earthquake."

The Brooklyn Evening Star of October 19th contains the following:

"Yesterday morning, at 9 o'clock, 480, and at 7,490, which was the highest temperature yesterday, vibrating but 7% from that time to 10 in the evening. For six hours yesterday there was an equilibrium, followed by a second, of the same state of atmosphere, of four hours. The storm of yesterday followed in its order the equilibrium I noticed in the Star of Saturday." E. M. My communication, under the head of "THE WEATHER," published in the Farmer and Mechanic of October 22d, gives the detailed state of the temperature of the atmosphere, and records two equilibriums on the Sunday the 18th, the last of which was running at the very moment the earthquake was operating at Boonsboro'.

These two additional illustrations are confirmations of the accuracy of my recorded observations, making 24 which have thus been confirmed in ten months.

There is a difference which I am wholly unable to explain in relation to some of the Equilibriums that I have recorded, a few of them have preceded Earthquakes, but most of them have succeeded those convulsions. We have accounts, as I have before observed, of 24 earthquakes, which have taken place within the last ten months, and my recorded and published observations indicate the occurrence of

several other earthquakes, the particulars of which have not yet reached us. It is very remarkable that so many earthquakes have been felt in so short a space of time, and that all of them have been idicated by Equilibriums upon Brooklyn Heights, of great comparative duration. I have found a difference the present year as to the effect which thunder storms produced on the atmosphere, sometimes depressing the temperature, and other times increasing the heat, but in no instance has a thunder storm in my immediate neighborhood, produced an Equilibrium on the Heights. Thus it seems that the earthquakes are wholly different from thunder and lightning. I have been very particular the present year to watch the temperature of the atmosphere during the continuance of heavy electric discharges from the clouds, and to carefully record these observations.

My record of the deep excavations made in the earth, in various localities on this continent, by the sinking of shafts for mining, and for fresh and salt water wells, show that the average depth of loose earth that composes the bed in which vegetation takes root, is about 45 in depth on an average-that beneath this, as far as explored is rock stratas. If the whole surface was levelled off, the water courses, lakes and oceans filled with the mountains and the hills, the whole surface of the globe would become submerged. If earthquakes have their labratories beneath, or within the rock stratas that form the tody of our planet, then we should have reason to look for the explosive force to act upwards in such localities as present the least resistance, but vertical action is less frequent than horizontal, and this may arise from the great number of volcanoes allowing vent to the interior through these numerous craters. I have in several of my numerous observations published the last 12 months, said that our atmosphere was under the influence of extensive disturbances, the result has thus far shown the correctness of my suggestion. E. MERIAM.

EARTHQUAKES AT TRINIDAD.-The Journal of Commerce, of October 27, states that 12 or 15 shocks of earthquake have been felt in the island of Trinidad, in the course of a very few days. Much damage has been done to buildings, and the ground has been cracked in several places. Some of these shocks were more severe than any which have been felt there for many years. Two of the shocks occurred during divine service, and one of them while several persons were attending the theatre. The inhabitants are alarmed at the frequency and severity of the shocks, and fear a repetition of them. In one of the churches a stone fell from the tower during service, but did not injure any person. This information, we understand, comes from a young lady now in Trinidad, in a letter to her family, resident in New Haven, Con., and by them has been communicated to one of the editors of the Journal of Commerce, whose residence is in that city. We shall, ere long, probably, be able to ascertain on what days of the month these shocks took place. The island of Trinidad is in latitude between 11 and 12 degrees north, and longitude 61 and 62 west, is about fifty miles long, and about thirty-three wide. There are mountains here three thousand feet high. The famous lake of bitumen is in this island, and it contains also several mud volcanoes. Trinidad is but twelve miles from the main land, (and opposite Colombia, South America,) being but about a dozen miles distant therefrom. The lakes of bitumen in Trinidad, would, in a high northern latitude, become cannel coal by crystalization by cold.

EARTHQUAKE IN MARYLAND.-The shock of an Earthquake, as it was supposed by many to be, was sensibly felt on Sabbath night of last week, about 9 o'clock. The noise resembled the roll of a heavy carriage in rapid motion, and was distinguishable for half a minute or more. We understand that it was pretty generally felt throughougt the county, and various are the surmises as to the cause.Some supposed it to have been the explosion of a powder mill, and others attribute it to a supernatural agency. 'Twas quite a quake, call it by whatever name.-Hagerstown Pledge, Oct. 27.


SALTVILLE, Washington co., Va., Oct. 14. Dear Sir:-Your letter of the 22d ultimo came to hand by due course of mail, for which I am greatly obliged. I also thank you for the number of the Farmer and Mechanic which contained Mr. Conkey's meteorlogical table, and his interesting letter concerning his visit to a small lake in Onodanga county.

Your suggestion that the salt rock of this region supplies the saline waters of the Kanawha works, is new to me. It hardly seems possible that it can be the case. It is true that "New River," which is the head waters of the Great Kanawha, rises south of us fifty or sixty miles, in North Carolina, but it takes a circuitous route, passing us on the east about seventy miles, and there are mountain barriers between us and it in every direction. There are no streams within forty miles of us whose waters discharge into "New River," and Kanawha is about one hundred and fifty miles distant, in a northwardly direction. Our streams all discharge into the Tennessee river. At some former day there has been a very great accumulation of sulphuric acid, as is evident from the vast beds of gypsum which are found in this region, the result of the chemical action of that acid upon our limestone mountains. And there now exist between us and Kanawha many springs of sulphur water. The presence of sulphuric acid, in combination with the muriate of soda, would decompose the salt, and produce sulphate of soda, or Glauber's salts.

The sulphate of barytes (of which I spoke in a former letter) does not change its appearance in the least by exposure to the atmosphere, but retains its pure crystalline white appearance. I informed you that it was opaque, but I find upon examination that it is nearly as transparent as alabaster.

I will, if possible, obtain for you a specimen of the iron you speak of, and send to you with the other minerals. It is manufactured at Graham's Iron Works, in Wythe county, about forty miles from this place. All the iron made by Mr. Graham is not of that quality; but the kind you inquire about is made of a peculiar kind of ore, which produces iron nearly as hard as steel, and is said to be twice as durable as common iron when used as wagon tire.

By yesterday's mail I received from you the "Farmer and Mechanic," the "Brooklyn Evening Star," and "Willmer & Smith's European Times," for which accept my sincere thanks. By the mail Mr. Milnor received your interesting letter post marked the 3d instant, and the "New York Express" containing an account of the perilous voyage of the steamer Great Western. The fearful storm which that gallant vessel outrode, I think, must have howled the requiem of many a frailer ship.

I do not remember of informing you of the existence of a fresh water spring in this vicinity, that ebbs and flows alternately at irregular periods, varying from fifteen minutes to an hour or two. It issues from the base of a mountain, and will sometimes for an hour send forth a gushing torrent of water, suf ficient to propel the machinery of a grist mill, and the next hour, perhaps, will scarcely afford sufficient water for a horse to drink, and thus it has continued to alternate since the earliest recollections of the inhabitants of the country. This strange phenomenon, however, excites no more wonder among the people of the country, than does the more regular ebbing and flowing of the tide among the inhabitants of the sea-shore.

LIGHTNING.-Mr. James McGowan, aged 63, residing in seventh township concession, of Kingston, Upper Canada, was killed by lightning on Friday, Oct. 2. The lightning descended the chimney, and struck him as he sat by the fire. killing him instantly.-Christian Guardian.

Your record of the pathway of the earthquake and the storms connected with other phenomena, becomes more and more interesting as you progress in your investigations.

Yours, truly,



September 28, 1846.

E. Meriam, Esq.-Dear Sir-I promised in my last to offer some further facts in meteorology, and in conclusion to make some deductions favoring the opinions you have advanced that any important atmospheric convulsions at a given place indicate strong simultaneous or early sequential convulsions at other points often remote or at great distances apart.

The meteoric shower of 1833, some observations on which I proposed to make, was an imposing spectacle that rarely occurs.

Its appearance put me in mind of many snow flakes, falling amidst the glare of a burning city in a dark night.

The night 13th of Nov., was very clear, cold and calm, and from a small beginning, the "falling stars" increased to hundreds at a time, decending from a circle of the heavens, perhaps 30 degrees in diameter, marked out a little north of the eastern point, the lower edge 40 to 60 degrees above the eastern horizon.

The circumference of this circle was indeed the boundary of a pyramidal column the apex of which advanced to the sun's meridian altitude inclining a little more northward and thence passed westward, so that at twenty minutes before sunrise the last luminous streams were rising upward from the western horizon.

I have seen drafts purporting to represent these meteors as flying downward in curving lines from a centre; but such appearance was wholly deceptive, every meteor flying in straight lines, until entering the upper strata of the atmosphere, many pursued lines variously curved leaving phosphorescent white ribbands where they passed, which, with a little fanciful aid, formed letters and other curiously curling figures.

Some of these evanescent figures would remain vis ible several minutes, but those portions high above our air disappeared soonest.

Some falling in lines direct to the view seemed to move very slowly, while such as obtained a strong angle moved with apparent rapidity.

One large meteor, appearing to move in a line directly to my eye, actually passed beyond a mountain 2,700 feet in height, at the distance of four miles from me, but I saw none that arrived at or very near the ground.

The base of angle made by this large meteor referred to, convinced me its straight line of motion decended from a very distant point, not less probably than 30,000 to 40,000 miles.

I ascended a conical hill and had fair observation of them most part of the night.

On the 22d of October preceding, I remarked a stream of light ascending from a course a little north of sunset to a point beyond the zenith, remaining visible from 9 till 10 o'clock: and in October, 1843, I observed a similar broad stream of light nearly in the same position.

In the month before, I saw two imperfectly formed mock images of the sun at one time.

I inferred that the equatorial ring of atmosphere,

[blocks in formation]

The sun shines only upon one hemisphere of the earth's concavo-convex atmosphere at once, and being above one hundred times more in diameter than the earth, the latter is poised near the top of that cone of dependencies reciprocally connecting them. Now, it seems self-evident that gravitating and many reciprocative qualities between bodies, situated far apart, act in line toward each other, and not indefinitely around in courses where may be no recipient.

Hence, if from a luminous object light be diffused among all vehicles or fit recipients around it, in our air, it seems to follow that the sun light emanates or extends in no direction exterior of the bounds occupied by reciprocal gravitating and other affinitive relations.

When the moon is totally eclipsed, the shadow of the earth with its atmospheric penumbra envelopes the face of the moon, and I believed, on seeing the last total eclipse of the moon, that certain ElectroMagnetic influences or Auroral flickerings, were actually extended into contact with the moon's disc, which had over it a tremulous visible mist during all the eclipse.

But however this may be, that hemisphere of the earth which remains more or less dark, as the sun daily marches round its course, is in a chemical state very much differing from the illuminated side.

It is on the darkened side of the earth that Auroral lights are manifested, and if we imagine a seg. ment of the earth's shadow to be cut upwards, parallel to the plane of the equator from the 45th degree of both north and south latitudes, (having reference to the magnetic poles,) such segments will contain the space from whence the Boreal lights of the north and of the south display their dancings and balancing propensities.

The chemical results in any given day, yielded within the tropical belt, are quite different from those in the two polar regions during the same day, leading

Pending such efforts at equatsion, various groups of attractile and rejectile attributes coming in contact, flashthrough and high above the common atmosphere, and sometimes seem to occupy all the space shadowed by the earth.

Without denying that our world may in its motions pass among extremely rarified or nebulous matter which might cause phenomena like the meteoric shower, I would sooner believe those meteors to arise from Electro-Magnetic forces, every day more or less operative in fabricating and condensing properties and qualities already attaching to our world.

I think the 1833 meteors in several respects differ from the ordinary meteors originating in dry autumnal seasons within our atmosphere.

Those last may depend upon decomposed animal and vegetable gases uniting with certain mineral ized vapors in the air.

The "Will o' the wisp" moving slowly over marshy plains sometimes expiring and relighting has analogies to the last named and so has the phosphorescence of decaying flesh and wood.

In the lightening bug too, is observed a luminosity, which seems to be vivified and obedient to its volition, while in the glow worm the will of the insect does not direct the degreee of brilliance.

The electric eel may develope light, and in certain pathological conditions, the human body evolves sparks and may sustain shocks resulting in Paralysis or instant death.

In connection with exhibits of light from abtruse groups of chemical forces, I will only in addition allude to the luminosity of sea-water and dry sandstone plains as I have witnessed it.

The radiance of coast water and shallow disturbed parts of the ocean is more striking than where the depth of the sea extends to several miles.

In 1835 during a dry autumn, in crossing by stage at night, 30 miles of the upper table plain of the Cumberland mountain, the ground was so luminous a pin might be seen, and in passing hills on one side shadows were cast toward the other side-there was no moon and so bright was the light the driver at first supposed it was fire light and finding it was not, seemed to have misgivings that some dire event was about to happen.

I have often observed considerable luminosity above frozen snow covered fields.

It is not esteemed strange to see dark clouds enveloped in lightning, and darting off their thunder bolts to the ground upon this mountain.

The superstratum of this elevated table land is a thin sandy soil covering an average depth of 1000 feet of sand-stone, below which, lie coalfields and masses of stratified limestone.

The sand-stone has much iron in it, and lying in horizontal strata sounds like a bridge when waggons pass over it.

On one occasion crossing in a dry October, the driver repeatedy arrested his horses (a slave who had never passed that way before) to know what was the cause of the rumbling Eolian sound, sometimes rising and falling on the ear like the sound of wind rushing among green pine forests, and stating that even whilst driving along the doleful noise under ground, was audible.

On putting up early in the evening the Landlord said it was "nothing but under-ground thunder,"

which in dry fall seasons usually indicated severe


In a slighter degree I have since often heard these low-wailing half-musical sounds whilst crossing other parts of these uniformly constructed moun. tains.

The number of trees, especially chesnuts, having high pointed branches, which are annually stricken by lightning upon these highlands would be incredible to any who may not have heard the artillery of the clouds in that quarter during summer.

It needs but little examination to induce the impression that strong currents of electro magnetic forces pass from the South-west toward the Northeast in the midst of these mountains composing the westernmost range of the great Apalachian chain.

The same influences exerted through the earth under sea-waters finds a convenient vehicle in the salt-water for displaying light in and over the briny

[blocks in formation]

LIGHTNING.-The New York Sun of Oct. 27, states that the house of Mr. Jutman Deadman, in North Carolina, was struck by lightning, which instantly killed his wife and set fire to the house. Two children and a negro man were stunned, bur recovered shortly. The negro and one child escaped, but the other child remained by the mother and both were burnt with the house. The father was at work a mile off, and when he returned found his wife, child and all his property in ashes."



Dear Sir-Your letter of Oct. 19th, was duly received, asking me to furnish you with my Meteorological record for September, also for Oct. 2, 7, 9, 12, 13 and 14, as to storms, &c., and the weight of a gallon of our Salt water, all of which I furnish you with pleasure. I often receive from you New York and Brooklyn papers, for which accept my thanks.

Oct. 2d, Barometer at sunrise 29, 30-100 of an inch, and rose during the day to 29, 60-100 inches; at 2, P. M., we had a shower which lasted one hour, rain fell 15-100 of an inch; temperature at sunrise, 500; 9, A. M., 63; 3, P. M., 57, 9, P. M., 48; wind E. until about noon, it then shitted N. W.

Oct. 7th, Barometer at sunrise, 29, 70-100 inches, vibrating but 2-100 of an inch during the day. Temperature at sunrise, 52; 9, A. M., 65; 3, P. M., 76, 9, P. M., 68; sky clear the most of the day, fresh wind from the South until about noon, it then shifted S. W., lightning active during the evening, no rain.

and even ten per cent, sulphate of lime, in less detrimental to the salt, than one per cent. muriate of lime, for the reason that it requires about 500 lbs. of water to dissolve one pound of sulphate of lime, while muriate of lime will become semi fluid in a summer atmosphere when exposed to the air.

Salt which contains sulphate of lime, muriate of lime, and muriate of magnesia, on dry land, condenses the atmosphere and thereby affords moisture to the ground.

Oct. 9th, Barometer at sunrise, 29.70-100 inches, the same at 9, A. M.; 3, P. M., 29.68-100; 9, P. M., 29.82-100 inch, temperature at sunrise, 630; 9. A. M., 78; 3, P. M., 79; 9, P. M., 56; wind fresh from the S. W. until noon, it then shitted N. W., commenced raining at 4, P. M., and ended at 7, P. M., rain fell 55-100 of an inch.

Oct. 10th, Barometer rose to 30.02-100 inches, vibrating but 2-100 of an inch for about twenty-four hours.

Oct. 12th, Barometer at sunrise, 29.76-100 inches; 9, P. M., it had tell to 29.52-100 inches. Temperature at sunrise, 460; 9, A. M., 54; 3, P. M., 68; 9, P. M., 58. There was an equilibrium which i noticed commenced this evening, after dark. My thermometer is a self-register, I found by examining it next morning at sunrise that the mercury stood 580, the same as the evening before, but it had registered itself at 57%, sometime during the nights of the 12th and 13th, and continued to stand at 580, for a little more than twenty-four hours.

Oct 13th, Barometer at sunrise, 29. 36-100 of an inch, 9 A. M., 29 30-100,-1 P. M. 29.00-3 P. M., 28.76-100-4 P. M., 23.64-100-5 P. M., 28.50-100 -6 P. M., 28 44-100.,-7 P. M. 28.44-100 of an inch, light wind from the S. E. untill about noon, it then shifted E, and continued to blow from that quarter until 7 P. M., when it shifted directly W. and blew a perfect gale. The Barometer commenced rising at the same time, the wind shifted, and at 10 o'clock it had risen to 28 96-00 of an inch. Rain fell freely during day, it commenced 5 A. M. and ended 7 P. M., measuring 1.60-100 of an inch.— Dew point 570.

Oct. 17, rained at intervals all day, and commenced snowing 6 P. M., next morning the snow was about three inches deep, measuring 70-100 of an inch. Agreeable to your request I have made the experiment with the water. One gallon of salt water at temperatue 490, and specific gravity by Salometer 700, weighs avordupois 9 lbs. 7 oz. 1 dram. One gallon of rain water at the temperature of 420. weighs 8 lbs. 4 oz. 8 drams. The weight and meas. ures used in weighing this water were those used by our "Town" Sealer of weights and measures, they were all in good order.

Respectfully Your's,



Salt for Manure.

A__writer, over the signature of "Urbaniste," in the Farmer and Mechanic, of October 29th, quotes a few lines of my communication to the Farmers' Club, on the 4th of August, in reference to the use of salt as a manure.

"Urbaniste," says:-" Pure salt (chloride of sodium) is the same, whether obtained from the mines of Cracow in Poland, the salt ponds of Cuba, or Turk's Island, or the salines of Syracuse, or Kanhawha."The article known in commerce by the name of salt is not "pure salt," and the greater or lesser per cent. of chloride of sodium in common salt is not the criterion of the excellence of quality for the purposes for which common salt is mostly used, viz. for curing provisions.

Salt which contains sulphate of lime, is preferable as an anteseptic to salt containing muriate of lime,

Neither Turk's Island or Curracoa salt, are as good for lands as Onondago salt, for this reason:In the Report of Thomas Spencer, Esq., Superintendent of the Salines of the State of New York, made to the Legislature in 1842, pages 19 and 20, he gives a statement of analyses of salt, made by Professor Beck, as follows:

Turk's Island Salt

Pure Chloride of Sodium.

Sulphate of Lime.

Carbonate of Lime and Magnesia.

Liverpool Salt.

Pure Chloride of Sodium..
Sulphate of Lime..

Carbonate of Lime and Magnesia.
Sulphate of Soda..

Solar Salt made at Syracuss.-Pure Chloride of Sodium..

984.04 13.16 .....2.80


Salt made at Syracuse, by boiling.Pure Chloride of Sodiuin..

Sulphate of Lime..
Chloride of Lime and Magnesia....2.00

.988.99 ..8.77




.991.00 7.00

1000.00 989.44 892

Sulphate of Lime...
Chloride of Lime and Magnesia....1.64

[blocks in formation]

The salt which my communication to the Farmers' Club had reference to, is made from brine that is of greater specific gravity than water fully saturated with pure chloride of sodium. This brine is brought to that state by the union of two veins of water in the same well put in rapid agitation by the working of a pump, and while the pump is in the most active operation crystals of sulphate of lime are instantly formed in the commingling of the brines. These crystals are transparent flattened prisms with eight sides.

This brine contains oxide of iron, muriate of lime in abundance combined with the chloride of sodium, the brine being abundant, surrounded by cheap fuel, easy of evaporation, and therefore the salt can be made fo four cents the bushel.

HAIL STORMS IN 1788.-M. ARAGO states, that on the morning of the 13th of July, 1788, a Hail Storm commenced in the South of France, traversed in a few hours the whole length of the kingdom, and thence extended to the low countries and Holland.

A stone jug filled with this brine on being placed in a warm atmosphere, will condense the atmosphere upon its surface to such an extent that a puddle of water will be formed around the bottom of the jug in a short time. A trial of the salt upon land is a sure means of determining its quality for the moisÉ. MERIAM. tening of dry lands.

All the districts in France injured by the hail were situated in two parallel bands, moving Southwest and North-east. One of these bands was 175 leagues long; the other about 200.

The mean breadth of the most Western hail band was four leagues; the other only two leagues. The storm moved from the South to the North with a rapidity of about 16 leagues per hour. Between these two bands rain only, tell, and the width of the rain path was about five leagues.

The damage occasioned in France in 1039 parishes visited by the hail, appea:ed from official inquiry, amounted to Twenty-five millions of francs.

Could meteorologists, however skilled, have been able to foresee it?

WEATHER OF NEW ORLEANS.-Letters from New Orleans of the 7th, say the weather there, was then, and had been, pleasant and delightful.

A volcano had appeared on Sable Island, in the Red Sea.

THE FLEET AT VERA CRUZ.-From accounts received from Vera Cruz since the great gale, it appears that the hurricane of the 10th and 13th of October, did not visit that portion of the Gulf.

SINGULAR FACT.-It is stated as a remarkable fact, that the sea birds, the pulfin, guillemot and razorbill, cannot fly over the land at all, although they can rise from the surface of the sea with equal facility, mount to an infinite height, and fly with amazing rapidity so long as the sea is immediately beneath them, but no sooner do they fly above dry ground than they drop as if shot. During a strong wind from the sea it not unfrequently happens that these birds, in mounting higher than the edge of the cliff, are suddenly blown a few yards over land, when they immediately fall, and can regain their natural element only by crawling to the edge of the precipice, when new vigor seems to inspire them, and they at once soar away with their usual velocity.

The following table furnishes these dates, and also the periods of closing of the Hudson River, since 1830.

River. Canal. 1830..... December 22... .December 22 1831.... December 5..

1832.. 1833. 1834.

December 1.
December 21.
December 13.
December 12.
November 30,
November 26.

December 21.
December 13.
December 15.
1835. November 30.
1836..... December 7..
1837..... December 14..
1838.. November 25.
December 18.
December 4.
December 19.
November 28.
December 10.
December 19.
December 3......

. December 9.
November 25.
December 16.
December 3.
.November 30.
November 28.
November 30.
November 26.
.November 29.

1839 1840 1841 1842 1813. 1844 1845.

THE FRUITS OF INDUSTRY.-The exports of the Island of Cuba present two items that illustrate won derfully the products of industry-the Honey of the Bee and the Wax-the products of industry.

RAIN fell at Philadelphia, from October 31 to November 4, both inclusive, to the depth of 3 inches 61.100 of an inch.

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

We have the satisfaction of presenting our readers with an excellent illustration of the gigantic Steam Engine which the Dutch Government have constructed and put in operation for the purpose of draining the Lake at Haarlem, a truly wonderful work, and one that stands unrivalled in the history of hydraulic engineering.

The sketch of the origin and progress of the drainage of this Lake we have condensed from the Illustrated London News, and in order to render the description more interesting, we have procured an engraving of the Engine, and also a sketch of the Lake, which constitutes what is now known as the "Haarlem-mer-Meer." This, in the sixteenth century, consisted of four small Lakes lying contiguous to each other, and covering about 15,000 acres. By the gradual action of the waters on the soft alluvial soil surrounding them, these four Lakes become merged in one, and at the commencement of the eighteenth century covered an area of 45,000 acres at the average depth of 13 feet below low water in the Zuyder Zee. The alarm occasioned by the continued rapid encroachment of the waters of the Lake induced the government to expend some £33,000 in partially arresting its progress, until during the month of November, 1836, a furious hurricane from the west drove the waters of the Lake upon the City of Amsterdam, and drowned upwards of 10,000 acres of low land in the neighborhood. On the 25th December following, another hurricane from the


[ocr errors]




east drove the waters in the opposite direction upon the City of Leyden, the lower parts of which were submerged during forty-eight hours, and 19,000 acres of land were inundated. The enormous loss occasioned by these two storms induced the Government to determine on the Drainage of the Lake; a credit of 8,000,000 florins was voted for that purpose, and since 1839, a Canai has been cut round the Lake to isolate it from the neighboring waters, and to afford the means of navigation to the enormous traffic which has hitherto passed over the Lake, amounting to 700,000 tons per annum. This Canal is 37 2-3 miles long, 130 feet wide on the west side, and 115 feet on the east side of the Lake, with a depth of 9 feet of water. On the side next the Lake, the mouths of all water-courses entering it have been closed by earthen dams, having an aggregate length of 3000 yards, made in 10 feet depth of water.

Other great works have been executed by enlarging the sluices at Katwyk on the North Sea, and at Spaarndam on the river Y, at the base of the Zuyder Zee, where an auxiliary engine of 200-horse power has been placed to assist in discharging the water from the canal during the time of high water.

The water of the Lake has no natural outfall, being below the lowest practicable point of sluiceage. The area of water enclosed by the Canal is rather more than 70 square miles, and the quantity to be lifted by mechanical means, including rain water

ground above the rock stratas which form the sub-strata of the Island.

An Engine like this may become necessary to supply the Erie Canal with water should the waters of Lake Erie continue to recede.


[blocks in formation]

and springs, leakage, &c., during the time of drainage, is estimated at probably 1,000,000,000 tons.

In determining the motive power to be employed, two points were to be kept in view; first, the cost of evacuating the Lake; secondly, the cost of annual drainage; for, when once drained, the site of the Lake can only be kept dry by mechanical power.The annual drainage will probably amount to 54,000,000 tons of water, to be lifted on an average 16 feet; but it may occur, that as much as 35 millions of that amount must be discharged in one month.

With the exception of a few small Steam engines, the wind has hitherto been the motive power employed to work the hydraulic machines used in the Netherlands to keep the country dry. And the power of 12,000 Wind-mills having an aggregate average power of 60,000 horses, is required to prevent twothirds of the kingdom of the Netherlands from returning to the state of morass and lake, from which the indomitable energy and perseverance of the Dutch people have rescued what is now the most fertile country in Europe.

In 1840, it was found that the average consumption of coals by the Steam-engines used in England and Holland for draining laud, was 15 lbs. per nett horse power, per hour.

The Harlemmer Meer Commissioners were convinced that the old means must be put aside, and new ones adopted to suit the magnitude and peculiarities

« ПретходнаНастави »