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which is found at various points near the south base of Sierra Maestra, between Santiago and Guantanamo. The ore is mainly hematite, with some limonite, and is found principally as float, in great masses of bowlders. It is easy to work and of excellent quality, containing about 62 per cent of iron. A few occurrences have been discovered and mined of ore in place in the rock. There are three companies owning this mining property, one of which, the Juragua Company, has mined and shipped a considerable quantity of ore, nearly all of the shipments having gone to the United States. Up to 1895 the product of this company is stated at a trifle over 3,000,000 tons. Operations by the other two companies have consisted mainly in development work, only a small quantity of ore having been shipped by them. The late war, of course, put a stop to mining operations and much of the mining plant was destroyed.
A copper deposit, reputed to be of extraordinary richness, is known in the vicinity of El Cobre, in the southern part of Santiago province, but since 1868 mining upon it has been at a standstill. Deposits are reported in other parts of the island, and much of this metal may yet be produced.
Asphaltum is found in various places, notably in the vicinity of the city of Santa Clara, where it has for many years been used in making illuminating gas for the city.
A little gold and silver has been mined in the island in past times, but for many years the island has not produced either of these metals.
CLIMATE. The climate of Cuba is comparatively simple in its character and can be briefly described. With the long, narrow shape of the island, its great extent of coast line and small breadth, it has in the main an insular climate with a high mean temperature, slight extremes of temperature, great humidity of the atncosphere, and an ample rainfall.
At Habana, on the north coast, the mean annual temperature is 77o. The range of temperature between the mean of the hottest month and that of the coldest month is from 82° to 71°, or only 11°. The highest temperature on record in Habana is 100.6°, and the lowest 49.6o. This maximum recorded temperature is no higher than in northern cities of the United States, but the duration of high temperatures is much greater in Cuba and explains the high mean temperature. But, notwithstanding the long-continued high temperature, the climate of the northern portion of the island is tempered by the trade winds which blow with but little variation throughout the year, and the nights in both winter and summer are cool. The mean annual temperature at Habana fairly represents that of the island, it being perhaps a little hotter upon the south coast and inland than upon the north coast. The range of temperature between summer and winter does not differ probably materially anywhere on the coast from that at Habana, but inland is probably a little greater. The mean relative humidity at IIabana averages about 75 per cent and remains tolerably uniform at all times of the year. Inland the humidity becomes somewhat less, but not decidedly so.
The mean annual rainfall at Habana, derived from observations of many years, is 52 inches. The record shows, in different years, a rainfall ranging from 40 to 71 inches. This represents quite closely the rainfall upon the north coast of the island. Inland and upon the south coast it is probably somewhat less, although observations are lacking. This is decidedly less than upon the Gulf coast of the United States and but little greater than that of the northern seaboard cities. As regards the distribution of rainfall through the year, there is a wet and dry season, the former being from May to October, during which time about two-thirds of the precipitation of the year is received. Rain falls during about one-third of the days during each year, although this does not represent by any means the proportional amount of rainy weather. The days are usually clear up to about 10 o'clock, from which time till night, during the rainy season, it is frequently showery. The nights are commonly clear. Thunderstorms are frequent, but not violent.
The prevailing winds throughout the island are the northeast trades, which blow with great persistency, but seldom with violence. The island is occasionally, though not frequently, visited by hurricanes. These break upon the coast, causing the maximum destruction in its neighborhood, and rapidly lose their force and violence as they proceed inland.
In winter, when the trade winds extend farthest to the southward, the island not infrequently comes within the influence of “northers," from the North Temperate Zone, greatly and suddenly reducing the temperature on the north coast. These occur during the winter months and follow the severe storms of the United States, when the temperature sometimes falls as low as 50°, causing much suffering, as very little provision is made against cold in the construction of the Cuban houses.
FLORA. Owing to the richness of the soil, the equable, moist temperature and abundant rainfall, the island is a veritable garden, abounding in flowers, luscious fruits, and a great variety of vegetables. Uncultivated nature has a wild luxuriance of jungle, grove, and forest to be traversed only by the aid of machete or along well-worn pathways. To illustrate the great variety of its native flora, it may be stated that over 3,350 native plants have been found in the island besides those introduced. They include many species of valuable wood, such as the mahogany, ebony, granadilla, majagua, cedar, walnut, ceiba, lignum-vitæ, oak, pine, and the palm, of which there are over 30 species, among them the royal