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materials.) Tonnage dues, I should add, must be paid in all cases; the rate varying according to flag: for American vessels, five francs the ton.
Where an American vessel-of-war, or merchant vessel, enters a French port through necessity, whether to escape bad weather or to obtain water, she is exempt from all custom-house duties, and from all tonnage duties. Nevertheless, were these vessels to land or receive merchandise, they would be subject to the ordinary regulations.
Should you need further information, I will transmit it with promptness. Accept, I pray you, monsieur the consul, the expression of my very distinguished consideration. THE DIRECTOR AUTIE.
Monsieur the CONSUL of the United States of America
for the Department of Charente Inferieure a la Rochelle.
COGNAC.-H. PINET, Consular Agent.
SEPTEMBER 29, 1862.
The trade of this district is altogether confined to the exportation of the produce of the vines after its conversion into brandy by distillation.
Not being a seaport, we have no import trade. This year during the American war the business between this district and the United States has been almost null; by the same cause the trade of this district with England has been very limited. On the whole, the American war causes much distress amongst our working class. The average price of an article has ruled from 190 to 200 francs per hogshead.
Our district being altogether a wine-growing country, I cannot report any progress in that branch of agriculture. The same way of cultivating the vine has existed for hundreds of years.
ROCHEFORT.-A. G. BRILLOMIE, Consular Agent.
OCTOBER 6, 1862.
* * The wine crop in 1862 may be considered as a half-middling one, superior to 1861 both in quality and quantity: 1861 had produced the third of an ordinary crop only-quality good. The spring frost and later two days of strong heat have caused the loss of the quarter of that crop this year.
The grains and other dry crops were, in 1861 and 1862, as follows:
In 1861: Corn, a crop; barley, one-sixth; oats, none; beans, none; oleaginous seeds, one-tenth; potatoes, fair and good. In 1862: Corn, barley, oats, beans, and oleaginous seeds, a mean crop; potatoes, fair and good.
Brandy.-1861 was a poor year for that brandy which had no sale outwards. In our country there is a rather large stock of the preceding years, but none or very little of 1861. This year very little wine will be distilled: its good quality will cause generally a great consumption.
NAPOLEON Vendée.—Theodore Gen, Consul.
MARCH 6, 1862.
The harbor of Sables d'Olonne is a very large one, built into the city at great expense, a further outlay being at present expended in deepening it to admit ships of the largest class. * * It is to be regretted that no Ameri
can is at this place; the more so, as the harbor-master states that two American vessels have been wrecked off the coast, and had no interpreter to aid them. Napoleon Vendée is a wealthy city of nearly nine thousand inhabitants, built by Napoleon I.
The present Emperor has caused four railroads to be commenced to be immediately completed, the terminus of each to be at Napoleon Vendée: one to connect with the north via Paris, one with the south via La Rochelle, one with the east via Tours, and one to Sables d'Olonne.
MARTINIQUE.-ANDREW G. CAROTHERS, Consul.
MAY 12, 1862.
I have the honor to transmit herewith an enclosure containing the following tables:
1. A table of colonial exports from January 1 to May 1, 1862.
2. A table of prices current from May 1 to May 10, 1862.
3. A table of current prices, on May 10, 1862, of goods imported from the United States.
Cacao, from 78 to 80 francs for the kilogramme.
Raw sugar, from 18 to 23 francs for the kilogramme.
Current prices of goods imported from the United States May 10, 1862.
I have the honor to enclose herewith a comparative table of exportations of Martinique and Guadaloupe, from January 1 to May 1, 1862.
Comparative table of exportation of Martinique and Guadaloupe, from January 1 to May 1, 1862.
MAY 31, 1862.
As to "l'art des mines," there is the slate-stone, resembling the anthracite, which can be obtained in Piecheur, where is situated a "depôt anthracifere." "Terres ocreuses" can be collected in eight communes, where it is used to clarify the juice of the sugar-cane; and to speak of things useful for ornamenting, there is the "fer sulfuré du champ-Flore des jaspes colorés, due silex pyromaque, des bois petrifiés de diverses espèces." There are thirty-eight specimens of wood fit to be used for building purposes, and for those of the wheelwright, the cooper, the cabinet-maker, and the "marqueterie." To this collection there will be added one hundred and six species of roots, of corces, of plants, flowers, and grains, indeed all of materials employed in medicine. They are the best used in European therapeutics. Three kinds of gums complete the list.
Eight hundred specimens of dried plants, the herb of Martinique, perfectly prepared and preserved in liquor, are among the "contingent." The immense number of these plants defy proper classification. Their medicinal properties make them of great value to humanity, and also commercially. Martinique is not rich in game. Of prepared skins, there are the mammifers; twenty-five kinds of birds of the order of pheasants, plovers, and web-footed; two kinds of reptiles, one of which, the tortoise, ("la tortue caret,") is highly prized for its beautiful shell; two kinds of fish, the most curious of the coast; three kinds of molluscs, one of which (le lambis) is not less admired for its meat than for the worth of its shells in making lime; five kinds of zoophytes; "dont 17 polypiers pierreux et flexibles des gemes madrépores, millépore, pavonie, meandrine, etc.;" and these furnish great resources to the lime-burner, and are employed to make the finest cravaches.
In addition to these, there are limes "de coquilles," "le platre" and also of the "goemous ou varechs du genres argassum," which are most common upon our shores, and which serve to enrich the Windward islands.
Another fertilizer of real wealth to the country and found in considerable quantities in St. Martin, is the "residus" or guano of the "chauve-souris." This is the same substance as that found deposited in the grottos of the island of Sardinia. The analysis demonstrated that the guano of the "chauve-souris” contains from four to six per cent. azote; that of Peru about eight per cent. The "chauve-souris" are by thousands of millions in this island, and multiply rapidly. .hey take refuge in the daytime in the grottos, ruined buildings, or garrets of old houses. They prefer to live and die in the grottos. There can be no doubt but that, if all the places where they exist in the country could be visited, piles of this valuable guano would be discovered,
Cacaos are largely cultivated. They are remarkable for their largeness and color. The best is the "cacao caracas. Oleaginous plants are numerous.
Two varieties of the "ricin"-the red and
the gray-are of the finest order, and command great sale.
The walnut yields fifty per cent. of oil-"du poids de a moix." The arachide grows anywhere upon the coast. Sesamum can be easily cultivated near St. Pierre, and made very productive.
The cotton is of the best sort, but there appears to be difficulties in the way of its cultivation. In the southern part of the colony the fault seems to be "bras et bonne direction." In the northern portion the constant humidity of the climate renders it unremunerative.
Special plants are represented by the bean "de tonka," the flowers "de caniarg" and the "gombo musque," all used by the perfumer. We may add a fourth, the grains of the "cassia occidentalis," vulgarly called "cafe mégre," or "herbe puante," which grows most prolifically and emits an odor similar to that of coffee.
The colony boasts of mechanics and machinery, of several establishments at
which can be furnished all machinery for the working of sugar; of wheelwrights from whom can be obtained carriages and chariots, according to need and every description; and it may be said, the splendid woods of the country and the excellent workmanship enable the mechanics to compete with those of the metropolis.
Fibrous barks comprise the "mahot," "Rabaca," and the "jute" of the continent of India. This bark has greatly flourished here. Cloves, "canelle," soaked in the alcohol of the cane, bay rum, and articles of this class, cannot be excelled. Many trees yield "caoutchouc." From "Sapota mulleri" we derive gutta percha of a certain sort. Tobacco grows well, but cannot be made profitable. The arrowroot, introduced a few years since from Malabar, has since been very successful. In short, the productions of the island, as far as they may be represented, especially the sugars, are of superior quality, and Martinique can only be benefited by placing herself in competition with other parts of the world.
JUNE 10, 1862.
I have the honor to inform you that the number of "immigrants," as they are officially designated by this colonial government, introduced into Martinique from the commencement of the trade to December 31, 1861, is as follows:
I have the honor to inform you that from April 20, 1861, to January 11, 1862, the number of proprietors of estates who made application to the government for "immigrants," amounted to 723, and the number of persons asked for was 6,704 Africans and 567 coolies; total, 7,271. To meet these applications the government is dependent, of course, upon the number of arrivals, and accordingly make the distribution. It may not be improper to explain the above list.
The government requires an application to be made by persons desiring to obtain "immigrants." In this application they state, under certificate from the mayor, the name and size of their respective estates, and all facts connected with the receipts and expenditures of the year previous.
If the applicant have the requisite means and the "honorabilite," he secures the registration of his application in the order of its date. A copy of this register, together with the number asked for, and also the number that has been accorded by the "Comite," in compliance with the above referred to request, is published as often as is deemed necessary in the "Moniteur de la Martinique, Journal Officiel de la Colonié."
Upon the arrival of an "immigrant" vessel, after the necessary rules have been complied with, the "special commissary of immigration" makes an "apportionment" in lots of ten each. Each lot is numbered. The numbers on tickets are placed in a box, from which the proprietors draw in the order of their registration. I understand, however, that no single estate can receive more than twenty out of each cargo.
It will be observed from these statements that the "immigrant" himself has no choice of the estate upon which he is to labor, nor of the person to whom he is to be engaged.
JUNE 12, 1862.
I have the honor to inform you that the French ship "Confiance," from Pondicherry and Karikal, arrived on February 4, 1862, at Fort de France, on this island, having on board 401 coolies.