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LEEDS.--ALBERT Davy, Consul.
FEBRUARY 26, 1862. I have the honor herewith to transmit you a copy of the trade and navigation accounts of the United Kingdom for the month ending the 31st December, and the year ending December, 1861, which have just been printed by order of the House of Commons. This document is the most important published on the trade of this country. It gives the declared value of British and Irish produce exported to each foreign country and British possessions in the year 1861. It will be seen by it, at page 35, that the exports to the United States for that period amounted only to £9,058,326 against £21,669,065 in 1860, being a decrease of £12,608,739. The total export to foreign countries and British possessions amounted to £135,115,113. The total revenue from customs duties amounted to £23,446,526.
James W. MARSHALL, Consul.
November 24, 1862. I have the honor to transmit the annual tabular exhibit of exports to the United States, certified at this office, during the year ending September 30, 1862. Judging from the returns of the few weeks that the recent act of Congress has been operative here, I am led to believe that under the old system not over one-fifth of the actual amount of the exports to the United States from this district was recorded here, if, indeed, the proportion is not greater.
The increase in the amount for the year ending September 30, 1862, as compared with the previous one, would seem to indicate that the commerce of our country is recovering from the shock which the rebellion at first caused to it, and we may hope that a brighter future is before us in this respect. I have not been able to obtain any reliable data for estimating what proportions of the general importations into Great Britain from the United States are consumed in this district.
The high rates of exchange lately and now prevailing have induced many shippers of goods from this region to order returns to be made in American produce. I hear of largely increased quantities of our breadstuffs, bacon, cheese, butter, &c., being brought hither, and, by the consequent reduction in the prices of the necessaries of life, helping to mitigate the distress caused by lessened demand for labor.
The operation of the commercial treaty with France recently concluded, as well as of that with Belgium, has, I believe, been beneficial to the industrial interests of this district. I hear of no unusual lack of labor, or of uncommon distress among the operatives in this locality.
Since the middle of October the increase in the number of invoices beyond the
average of the preceding part of the year has been almost twelve fold.
Statement showing the description and ralue of exports from Leeds to the United
States from October 1, 1861, to September 30, 1862.
94,584 11 51
At $4 84 to the pound sterling, equal to.
$457, 789 31
Recapitulation of the four quarters of the year ended September 30, 1861.
£ Quarter ended December 31, 1860..
87, 935 2 9 Do..... March 31, 1861.
58,529 1 0 Do..... June 30, 1861.
35, 698 2 1 Do..... September 30, 1861..
31,585 1 10
213, 747 7
At $4 84 to the pound sterling, equal to.....
Showing an increased value of exports to the United States in favor of the year ended September 30, 1862, of $341, 065 99.
CARDIFF.-CHARLES D. CLEVELAND, Consul.
JANUARY 23, 1862. Since replying, on the 20th, to yours of December 24, 1861, relative to a reduction of the expenditures for the relief of American seamen, two things have occurred to me relative to this subject.
First. There are men constantly coming to this consulate pretending to be American sailors, who are not, and unless great care be exercised very unworthy persons may be aided. I have been on the point of assisting such two or three times, and, of course, putting my government to the expense, when further inquiries have revealed their true character. Consuls, therefore, and especially those who have but little experience, should be particularly guarded against such deceptions.
Second. Captains of vessels are not sufficiently careful to secure American sailors when, as I have reason to believe, they might do so if they would use more diligence. If they were obliged to pay a fine of 108., or $2 50, or $5 for every foreign seaman they shipped, and if such fees were reserved by the consul for the relief of really deserving cases, the expenses now charged to the government in this department might be considerably lessened. As it is, the captains come to me and ask for an “inability certificate," and I give it to them for fifty cents, on their affirmation that they were unable to procure a crew of two-thirds American seamen.
OCTOBER 23, 1862. Having ascertained the number of American vessels that have arrived at the chief ports of entry in Great Britain and Ireland from the 1st of January to the 30th of September, 1862, I have thought it might be of some service to send a tabular statement of the same, which I herewith annex.
By this you will perceive that Cardiff ranks the third in the number of vessels entered, as it is, doubtless, the third consulate in importance in “the kingdom." BRISTOL.-ZEBINA EASTMAN, Consul.
Comparatire statement of the number of American vessels arrived at the princi
pal ports in Great Britain and Ireland from the 1st of January to the 30th of September, 1862, inclusive:
Liverpool.. London Cardiff Glasgow. Bristol Belfast Southampton Cork .. Dundee
465 vessels. 200 vessels. 132 vessels. 82 vessels. 52 vessels. 16 vessels. 10 vessels. 8* vessels. 9 vessels.
• Besides these 8, a little over 100 touched at Cork for orders.
Tabular statement of the exports from Cardif from January 1 to September
Tabular statement of the quantities and value of coal and iron shipped from
Cardiff, from January 1 to October 1 of the years 1860, 1861, and 1862.
September 10, 1862. Seeing in the consular instructions that United States consuls are expected to make reports from time to time in regard to matters which come under their observation seeming to extend the commercial interests of the country, I have thought it might not be wholly without use to present some of my first impressions respecting the commercial relations between this port and the United States.
First. I have considered it one of the inevitable results of the present rebellion that, whenever order shall be restored, there will be very
different relations in regard to the current of commerce. The monopoly of the cotton supply will be broken, and, in all probability, our nation will soon more than make up its loss of export in cotton by enlarged exports of breadstuff and other provisions which the northwestern States furnish so largely. It would, at least, seem the part of wisdom to encourage the extension of this kind of trade, and prepare the public mind for changes of the character that must be inevitable.
Now let me state some facts from which, no doubt, there will be many enterprising men to draw practical, probably profitable, conclusions.
One of the first astonishing facts which a traveller and a stranger attempting to live here is compelled to learn is the remarkably high price of everything pertaining to the expense of living. England is the most expensive country in the world in the item of provisions. It is evident there is a subject which is already forced on the notice of the nation and will become more and more essential, of more importance than the cotton supply, and that is the bread supplycheap bread for the people. The spirit of foresight, if not prophecy, is now enough upon me to ask the thoughtful man of Chicago to consider what answer the English nation will give to the call for bread five years from the present time, whatever may be the character of that settlement she is now anxiously looking for in regard to the cotton question. If it was said nearly two thousand years ago, in a spiritual sense, that man could not live by bread alone, can it not now be asked as emphatically, in a literal sense, can a nation live by cotton alone?
It is now certain that England will not hereafter look exclusively to the United States for cotton. The madness of the cotton States in grasping at the shadow cast in the pit of independence beneath their feet, in the greediness to hold the shadow as well as the substance, have let the substance drop from their teeth. Cotton is no longer king. Now will swing back, in a remarkably short period of time, the destiny of our country to the national equilibrium from which it has been jostled the last two generations by slave labor, to yhat Jefferson said was the commercial mission of America, to "give bread to the world.” I wish the men of Chicago—those who hold the keys of this great commerce, being located in and holding the destiny of the greatest grain market in the world—to be wise in season, and prepare for the coming time. Thus much, and enough for the present, of the ideality which moral philosophers say always precede the reality.
I take the last list of Liverpool wholesale prices of the principal articles of provisions, such as are exported from Chicago, and I compare them with the prices in the last Tribune:
I find wheat in Chicago at 70 cents ; here it is $1 80—more than double the price. Flour in Chicago is $3 25 to $3 60; here it is $7 10-double. Indian corn in Chicago is 224 cents ; here it is 90 cents—four times the value. Pork in Chicago $9; here it is $17 to $19—double. Hams and lard, 6 cents; here 12 cents—again double. (In the matter of pork, in the hog, I see it is worth in Chicago 24 cents; here, a day or two ago, an Englishman from the country en