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Entered according to act of Congress, in the year 1844,


in the Clerk's office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.




GREAT pains have been taken with the present volume of the American Almanac to sustain that reputation for fulness and accuracy of information by which the work has been distinguished during the sixteen years of its existence. By the kindness of the officers of the departments at Washington, and of numerous correspondents in every part of the United States, returns and corrections are obtained up to the latest hour, so as to render the Almanac as perfect a contemporaneous record as is possible of the government, the judiciary, the finances, and the statistics of the country. Amid the vast amount of materials that are collected for use, the difficulty of selection is great; but the editors have always considered that accuracy was a point of more importance than variety or quantity, and they have endeavored to make the work a continuous register of those statistical and miscellaneous facts only which may be depended upon, and which are most valuable for present use, and for reference in future years. An article, in this volume, upon the mistakes committed in taking the census for 1840, shows how easy it is to get together a great body of supposed facts, which shall be almost worthless, from the inaccuracies with which they abound, and from the impossibility of separating truth from


The astronomical calculations have been made, as in former years, by Mr. BENJAMIN PEIRCE, Perkins Professor of Astronomy in Harvard University; they are very full, and are believed to be worthy, in every respect, of his high reputation as a mathematician. The lists of officers, and the particulars respecting every department of the general government, the judiciary, army, navy, post office, public lands, revenue, and expenditure of the United States, are given in the most condensed form, and with even greater minuteness than on former occasions. Each volume of the American Almanac is intended to be an original and independent work, not a page in it being copied from one in a former volume, without numerous additions and corrections, and far the larger portion of the matter being entirely new. The last volume, for instance, contained hardly any particulars respecting the commerce of the country; in the present volume, there is more copious information respecting this subject, drawn from the official records at Washington, than was probably ever before

published in a single work. It is given in a series of tables, presenting comparative views of the articles of import and export, tonnage, duties collected, costs of collection, drawbacks, bounties, &c., for a period of 22 years. The materials for these tables, being taken from the customhouse returns, are deserving of full credit for accuracy and completeness. An article commenced last year is continued in the present volume, giving the titles and abstracts of all the public laws passed at the last session of Congress. The subject will be resumed in each successive year, so that the series of volumes will give a full view, in the shortest compass, of the general legislation of the country. The register of colleges, theological, medical, and law schools, &c., has been revised and corrected with great care, and is quite complete. The presiding officers of these institutions will confer a favor upon the editor and the public, by forwarding to him a copy of their annual catalogue.

Under the head of the Individual States will be found a very full view of their debts and finances, and many interesting details respecting the common schools, internal improvements, and charitable establishments. The American Obituary for the year is the only full record of the kind preserved in the country, and great care is taken to render it complete and accurate. The information respecting the States of Europe, especially Great Britain, is derived from the latest authorities, and is complete enough for all common purposes of reference.

The editor again offers his best thanks to the correspondents of the work, and respectfully solicits a continuation of their kindness. Any person who may notice errors in any part of the Almanac is earnestly requested to communicate them to the editor, for correction in the subsequent volume. But information to be used in the work for the next year must be received by him before the 1st of August.

Cambridge, Mass.

October 1, 1844.


PUBLISHER'S ADVERTISEMENT.- This number contains 10 printed sheets; the postage, under 100 miles, is 15 cents; over that distance, 25 The work will be sent by mail to any person who will remit $1 to the publisher at Boston. If the remittance be made without expense to the publisher, either by discount or postage, the Almanac will be sent by mail, postage paid.

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