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February 23, 1877, our state legislature passed a law providing for the payment of a bounty of one dollar per bushel in March, fifty cents per bushel in April, and twenty-five cents per bushel in May, for grasshoppers; and five dollars per bushel for their eggs at any time. Nebraska did still better, by making every road supervisor in the state a grasshopper policeman, and giving him authority to call out every man from sixteen to sixty years old, to spend two days killing young grasshoppers from the time they begin to hatch in the spring.
All the grasshopper states now have some sort of protective laws; and if another invasion occurs, by concerted and organized effort the amount of damage suffered can be reduced to a small per cent as compared with our last “plague of the locusts."
PART III.-NAVIGATION AND COMMERCE.
NAVIGATION-ANCIENT AND MODERN. It is not certainly known just what modes of navigation were used by the prehistoric mound-builders, although we have some relics of their time, or possibly of a still earlier race, which are deemed to show that they made wooden dug-outs or troughs, by burning them into a sort of boat-like shape and condition. And it is supposed that, prior to this they lashed together logs or fragments of drift-wood, and made rude rafts upon which they could cross rivers or float down, but of course could not return with them. Some remains have been found in northwestern lowa* which are supposed to prove that men used wooden dug-out boats during the age when Missouri, Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska were the bottom of a vast inland sea or lake, into which the Missouri and Platte rivers emptied their muddy waters and deposited what Prof. Swallow calls the "bluff formation ” over these states; and Prof. Whitney found
“ in California undisputable proof of man's existence there a whole geological age prior to the period when the great fresh water Missouri sea existed, (see note to chart, on page 67); hence the fact that raft and dugout navigation was in use among the islands and shallows of this immense mud-lake or inland sea, seems not improbable.
However, the modern Indians, before the white man appeared in these western wilds, had the art of making light and elegant canoes of birch bark, and could manage them in the water with wonderful skill. They made long journeys in them, both up and down stream; and when they wanted to go from one stream to another these canoes were so light that two men could carry one on their shoulders and march twenty or twentyfive miles a day with it if necessary. But they were too light and frail for the freighting service of the white man's commerce.
* Reported to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, at its St. Louis meeting, in August, 1878, by W. J. McGee, geologist, of Farley, Iowa.
The European explorers of this new world utilized the Indian canoes as far as practicable, often making considerable voyages in them; sometimes two were lashed together by means of coupling poles laid across on top of them, thus making a boat with two hulls. This rig could not
a be upset, and was easy to tow or paddle, besides making a sort of overdeck on which to carry baggage. But the thin, frail material was too easily punctured to be safe, and boats made of plank were always in demand. At first the boats were built in the “scow” fashion, with full width flat bottom and full width sled-runner bow. But they soon learned that in order to make any headway going up stream they must adopt the keel bottom and water-cutter prow style; and for more than a hundred years the traffic of all our navigable western rivers was carried on mainly by means of what were called keel-boats. The manner of propelling them up stream we have described elsewhere.
THE LEWIS AND CLARKE EXPEDITION. The Missouri river was first opened to commerce and geography by Lewis and Clarke, who were commissioned by President Jefferson, in 1803, to explore it. They lift St. Louis May 14, 1804. The outfit consisted of twenty-six men; one keel-boat fifty-five feet long, drawing three feet of water, and provided with one large square sail and twenty-two
Also, two open boats, one of six, and one of seven oars. May 16th they were at St. Charles; on the 25th they reached LaCharrette, a small village sixty-five miles above the mouth of the river, not far from where Marthasville, in Warren county, is now located, and which was the last white settlement up the river. June 1st they reached the mouth of the Osage river, which was so called because the Osage tribe of Indians dwelt along its course. June 26th, they reached the mouth of the Kansas river, where Kansas City now flourishes in all her glory, and remained here two days for rest and repairs. The Kansas tribe of Indians had two villages in this vicinity. July 8th they were at the mouth of the Nodawa, where now is the village of Amazonia, in Andrew county; and on the 11th they landed at the mouth of the Nemaha river. On the 14th they passed the mouth of the Nishnabotna river, and noted that it was only 300 yards distant from the Missouri at a point twelve miles above its mouth.
This was their last point within the boundaries of the present state of Missouri. St. Louis was then the territorial capital of the whole region they were to explore through to the mouth of the Columbia river on the Pacific coast. This was one of the great exploring adventures of the world's history, and its narrative is full of romantic and thrilling interest, but space forbids its presentation here. The party followed up the entire length of the Missouri river, then down the Columbia to the Pacific ocean, reaching that point November 14th, 1805. Here they wintered; and on March 23d, 1806, they started on their return trip by the same
route, arriving at St. Louis September 23d, at 12 o'clock-not a man missing from the party that first started out; and the people of St. Louis gave them an enthusiastic ovation.
FIRST STEAMBOATS IN MISSOURI. Steam came at last, and revolutionized the business of navigation and commerce throughout the world. The first steamboat that ever lashed the Missouri shore with its waves, or made our river hills and forests echo back her pulsating puffs, was the “General Pike,” from Louisville, which landed at St. Louis, August 2, 1817. Such boats had passed a few times up and down the whole length of the Ohio river, and between Louisville and New Orleans, before this, so that the people of St. Louis had heard about them from the keel-boat navigators. They were therefore overjoyed when the first one landed at the foot of their main business street, and thus placed them for the first time in steam communication with the rest of the civilized world. The event was celebrated with the most enthusiastic manifestations of delight by the ringing of bells, firing of guns, floating of flags and streamers, building of bonfires, etc. The second one, the “ Constitution," arrived October 2; and from that onward the arrival of steamboats became a very commonplace affair.
The first boat that ever entered the Missouri river was the “Independence," commanded by Captain Nelson. She left St. Louis May 15, 1819, and on the 28th arrived at Franklin, a flourishing young city that stood on the north bank of the Missouri river, opposite where Boonville is now located. There was a U. S. land office at Franklin, and it was the metropolis of the up-Missouri region, or as it was then called, the u Boone's Lick Country.”* When this first steamboat arrived the citi“ zens got up a grand reception and public dinner in honor of the captain and crew. The boat proceeded up as far as the mouth of the Chariton river, where there was then a small village called Chariton, but from that point turned back, picking up freight for St. Louis and Louisville at the settlements as she passed down. The town site of Old Franklin was long ago all washed away, and the Missouri river now flows over the very spot where then were going on all the industries of a busy, thriving, populous young city.
The second steamboat to enter the Missouri river (and what is given in most histories as the first) was in connection with Major S. H. Long's U. S. exploring expedition, and occurred June 21, 1819, not quite a month after the trip of the “ Independence.” Major Long's fleet consisted of four steamboats, the “Western Engineer,” “Expedition,” “Thomas Jefferson” and “R. M. Johnson,” together with nine keel-boats. The “Jefferson,” however, was wrecked and lost a few days after. The
*Daniel Boone had first explored this region and discovered some rich salt springs, and two of his sons manufactured salt and shipped it from Franklin for several years.
“Western Engineer” was a double stern wheel boat, and had projecting from her bow a figure-head representing a huge open-jawed, red-mouthed, forked-tongued serpent, and out of this hideous orifice the puffs of steam escaped from the engines. The men on board had many a hearty laugh from watching the Indians on shore. When the strange monster came in sight, rolling out smoke and sparks from its chimney like a fiery mane, and puffing great mouthfuls of steam from its wide open jaws, they would look an instant, then yell, and run like deer to hide away from their terrible visitor. They thought it was the Spirit of Evil, the very devil himself, coming to devour them. But their ideas and their actions were not a whit niore foolish than those of the sailors on the Hudson river, who leaped from their vessels and swam ashore to hide, when Fulton's first steamboat came puffing and glaring and smoking and splashing toward them, like a wheezy demon broke loose from the bottomless pit. Major Long was engaged five years in exploring all the region between the Mississippi riter and the Rocky Mountains which is drained by the Missouri and its tributaries; and his steamboats were certainly the first that ever passed up the Missouri to any great distance. Long's Peak, in Colorado, 14,272 feet high, was named after him.
From this time forward the commerce and travel by steamboats to and from St. Louis grew rapidly into enormous proportions, and small towns sprung up in quick succession on every stream where a boat with paddle wheels could make its way. For half a century steamboating was the most economical and expeditious mode of commerce in vogue for inland traffic; and Missouri, with her whole eastern boundary washed by the “Father of Waters,” and the equally large and navigable “Big Muddy" meandering entirely across her territory from east to west, and for nearly two hundred miles along her northwestern border, became an imperial center of the steamboating interest and industry.
About 1830 the art of constructing iron-railed traffic-ways, with steampropelled carriages upon them, began to be developed in our eastern states. But it was not until 1855 that these new devices for quick transit began to affect the steamboating interests of Missouri. (The first railroads to St. Louis were opened in that year; the railroad history of the state will be found in another place.) Then commenced the memorable struggle of the western steamboat interests, with headquarters at St. Louis, to prevent any railroad bridge from being built across the Mississippi, Missouri or Ohio rivers. They held that such structures would inevitably be an artificial obstruction to the free and safe navigation of these great natural highways. But it was evident enough to clearthinking people that the steamboat business must decline if railroads were permitted to cross the great rivers without the expense of breaking bulk, and this was the “true inwardness” of the anti-railroad bridge combination. The issue was made against the first railroad bridge that ever spanned the Mississippi, the one at Rock Island, Illinois. In a long course of controversy and litigation the railroads came out ahead, and steamboating gradually declined, both in the freight and passenger traffic, to less than half its former proportions. However, the tables have been turned again; and now, in 1881,
THE BARGE SYSTEM has suddenly leaped forth to break the threatening power of monopoly which the great east and west railroad lines for a while enjoyed.
The first step in the historic progress of this grand revolution in the commercial relations and connections of the entire Mississippi and Missouri valley regions, was the successful construction of the jetties at the mouth of the Mississippi river by Capt. James B. Eads, a worthy and distinguished citizen of St. Louis. This great enterprise was undertaken by Capt. Eads under an act of congress approved March 3d, 1875. It required him to obtain a channel 20 feet deep and 200 feet wide at the bottom, within thirty months from the passage of the act, upon which a payment of $500,000 would be made; and upon obtaining channels of two feet additional depth, with correspondingly increased widths at bottom, until a depth of 30 feet and a width at bottom of 350 feet was secured, payments of $500,000 were to be made, with additional payments for maintenance of channel. The total cost to the government of a channel 30 feet deep by 350 feet wide would be $5,250,000. Capt. Eads was also to receive $100,000 per year for twenty years, to keep the works in repair and maintain the channel.
Before the jetty works were commenced, there existed an immense bar of sand or silt, with a depth of only eight feet of water over it, between the deep water of the Mississippi and the navigable water of the Gulf. But at the close of the year there was a wide and ample channel of 234 feet; and for the greater portion of the distance between the jetties, over this same bar, there was a channel from 28 to 35 feet deep. The scheme has been so entirely successful that it has attained a world-wide celebrity and commercial importance, owing to the fact that the largest class of sea-going vessels can now be towed in and out of the Mississippi river without risk or difficulty; and it is this achievement by our honored fellowcitizen which has made possible the success of the grain-barge system of shipments from St. Louis direct to Europe, that is now revolutionizing the entire trade and commerce of the major half of the United States. The following facts will serve to show what has already been accomplished in this direction.
The total shipments of grain by the barge lines from St. Louis to New Orleans in the month of March 1881, was 2,348,093 bushels.
The St. Louis Republican of April 2d, 1881, stated: