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no instance of methodical planning, of far-seeing judgment, of just calculation of greater ends from a great beginning, than is here exhibited. The original plan, as it was transferred from the projector's mind to paper, can now be seen unfolded in all its symmetrical vastness. Even the details are everywhere visible, all of them in harmony with the whole.
That these results have been actually realized, is shown by the rapid and astonishing success of the settlement. Families are daily coming in from a distance, and selecting homes wherever they think best. As at the beginning, the proprietor continues to convey these locations at low prices and on liberal credit. Mere idle speculators—the men who buy but do not improve, were not wanted, and have been kept out. Many purchasers being well supplied with means, paid cash for what they bought; but to many worthy families the credit given has proved extremely useful. The railroad from Camden through Milville and Glassboro to Cape May, renders the spot accessible to all.
Vineland is probably increasing as rapidly as any new town in the West. In March last, lots were selling so rapidly as to insure the erection of 40 new houses every month, or 480 per annum. No such annual growth as this was realized by William Penn in the early history of Philadelphia. These new buildings are not ephemeral structures, mere shanties to keep off sun and rain, such as one connects with the idea of a new settlement, but substantial and durable houses. Some of them are truly elegant, such only as would be built by men possessing means and taste. When the whole tract has been disposed of, the population of Vineland will be 15,000. Now, the population of the entire county of Cumberland in 1860 was only 22,605; so that in a few years more it will have been nearly doubled by the energy and enterprise of a single individual. Whichever way you turn, progress and improvement of some kind are visible-here a new house is going up, there a new farm is being cleared. The settlement must become in the end an immense fruit garden. Its products reach the two great cities over cheap and rapid railroads, and command cash at generous prices. Its history shows the great public benefit that can be realized from the ownership of a vast tract by one man, when that man uses it and handles it as this tract has been managed. Such wholesale colonization may have been attempted by others, but it has nowhere been so successful as here.
No ducal owner of hereditary acres, either in England or on the Continent, with an annual income greater than the value of the fee of all Vineland, has ever undertaken a similar scheme of colonization. Such men devote their enormous wealth to acquiring more land, not to sharing their acquisitions with their less fortunate neighbors. Instead of clearing up forests and letting in population to improve, and beautify, and acquire permanent and happy homes, they plant the already cleared ground with trees, and shut population out, increasing the difficulty of the masses for acquiring even the small
est freehold. It has been left for a single American citizen, whose capital, unlike that of these baronial landowners, lay more in his head than in his purse, to set before all others thus extensively endowed with land, an example which will add more largely to the sum of human happiness the oftener it may be imitated.
As may be supposed, such a transformation as Mr. Landis has thus effected has powerfully affected the condition and value of thousands of acres within miles around Vineland. Prices have risen, settlers are coming in from abroad, and the area of the great body of waste land is annually becoming lessened by the creation of new farms. The cloud of prejudice which overhung this portion of New Jersey has been effectually dispersed. Railroads have made it as accessible as any other region. Within two hours' ride of it there is a population of a million of consumers whose consumption of its products must annually increase. Within such an atmosphere, these lands, which now sell at from $20 to $30 per acre, must rapidly rise in value, until they reach the prices commanded north of Camden, where, having enjoyed railroad facilities for a longer period, they bring from $100 to $300 per acre. If the reader is at a loss where to find a farm, let him look in this quarter.
The West-Illinois, and the Central Railroad Lands-Climate,
Soil and ProductionsVine Growing in Missouri-Free Lands in the Territories.
The vast region popularly known as “The West," has been so often travelled by thousands from the older States, and so repeatedly described in print, that all must have a general knowledge of its character and capabilities. Little, therefore, remains for me on these subjects, than a compilation of details appropriate to the matter in hand-where to find a farm.
In the year 1850 Congress granted to the Illinois Central Railroad Company 2,595,000 acres of land, to aid in building a railroad which would open up to sale and settlement a much greater adjoining area belonging to Government, most of which had been many years in market without finding purchasers, even at the low price of a shilling per acre. The quality of the land thus so long for sale was undoubted. It was prairie and rolling land of well ascertained fertility, but, like the long neglected soil of Long Island and of certain portions of New Jersey and Delaware, was effectually shut out from public approach for want of railroads. Mr. Greeley's description of the State, given in 1861, is too graphic to be omitted :
“In the very heart of the•great valley, midway between the Arctic and the Tropic, the Atlantic and the Rocky Mountains, lies the State of Illinois, the young Hercules of the West, touching Lake Michigan on the north, and the lower Ohio on the south, with the majestic Mississippi washing her entire western border, and the Wabash skirting her for more than half its length on the east. Her growth, during the last decade, has been really more rapid and considerable than that of any other State, though some of the newest have increased in population by a larger percentage than hers. Her population has all but doubled during the last decade, having risen from some 900,000 to about 1,700,000.
“ Other States have each some peculiarity in which it may fairly claim a precedence. Michigan and Wisconsin are both far better timbered, each having an abundance of pine, whereas Illinois has not a stick. Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Missouri, are richer in minerals; Iowa and Kansas have more undulating surfaces, and are (we think) better watered ; Ohio lies nearer to the seaboard ; New England has her manufactures, and New York her foreign commerce; but in average depth and richness of soil-in capacity to produce, cheaply, grain and grass, meat and vegetables, Illinois is probably the first among the States, and surpassed by no equal area on the face of the globe.
“ Originally, scarcity and imperfect distribution of timber, with defective facilities for transportation and travel, were her great drawbacks. Probably three-fourths of her surface were prairie when settlement commenced; while her timber was for the most part stunted and gnarly, by reason of the high winds constantly wrenching, and the fierce fires