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MONTHLY RATES FROM CHICAGO. To show a comparison of the rates upon some of the more important articles from Chicago to New York, as reported by the several trunk lines upon the first day of each month for a series of years, the following statement is presented :

[In cents per 100 pounds.]

Months.

January 1.
February 1
March 1..
April 1
May 1
June 1
July 1
Jugust 1
September 1.
October 1
November 1
December 1.

Cattle, carload.
Sheep, carload.

Hogs, carload.
1886. 1887. 1888. 1889. 1890. 1886. 1887. 1888. 1889. 1890. 1888. 1887. 1888. 1889. 1890.
35 35 22:26 25

40 30

30

30 35 30 80 30 25 85 35

26 25 45 40 30 30 30 35 80 30 30 35 35 35

26 45 45 40 30 30 30 35 30 30 80 85 35 85

45 40 30 30 30 35 30 30 30

45 40 40 30 30 80 35 80 30
25
45 40

30 80 30 35 30 80
35 35 161
191 45 40

30 80 80 80 80 80
35 35 51 26 18 45 40

80 30 30 30 18 80 35 35 10 26 18 45 40 25 30 80 30 30 18 30 35 35 15 26 18 45 40

80 30 80 80 18 30
85 85 15 26 18 45 40

80 80 30 30 30 30
35
15 26 26 45 19

30 30 30 30 25 80

161

Grain and flour, car

load.*

Packing-house products,

carload.

Dressed beef, carload.

Months.

1886. 1887. 1888. 1580. 1820.1886 1887. 1888. 1980. 1890. 1896. 1887. 1888. 1889. 1890.

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January 1. February 1 March 1.. April 1 May 1.. June 1.

30 30 30 30 30 30

33 83 33 30 80 30

35
35
80
30

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July 1....

30 30 30 30 25 65 65 to 45 33

40 Jugust 1. 30 30 18 30 23 65 65 7

80 September 1

30 30 18 30 23 65 65 25

80 October 1

30 80 18 80 23 65 65 November 1.

80 30 30 80 23

65 December 1.

80 30 25 80 30 65 31 35 Not including unground corn after August 1, 1889. From August 1, 1889, to November 1, 1890, tho rate on corn was 20 cents per 100 pounds, and December 1, 1890, 221 cents.

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LAKE AND CANAL RATES.

The rates upon corn and wheat via lakes, Chicago to Buffalo, were much lower during 1890 than they were during 1889. In the early part of the season, in fact before navigation was fairly opened, or shippers of ore or other products were ready for business, there was a great demand for loads at the larger ports by the vessel men. This caused a temporary glut of tonnage at Chicago, which reduced rates upon all classes of lake traffic. Oats were carried in May from Chicago to Buffalo as low as 15, corn 14, and wheat 14 cents per bushel. Later in the season, June and July, the rates were somewhat higher, but for the entire season of navigation they were quite low.

Rates via Erie Canal, Buffalo to New York, were also much lower the past season than they were during 1889. Unlike the lake rates, they opened strong, and remained quite steady throughout the

season.

Statement showing the weekly range of rates of freight upon corn and wheat, Chi

cago to New York, via lakes and canal, for the years 1888, 1889, and 1890.

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New York to Liverpool, as compiled from the returns from several of the larger steamship companies:

January. February. March. April. May.

June. Articles. 1889. 1890. 1889. 1890. 1889. 1890. 1889. 1890. 1889. 1890. 1889.

1890. Wheat, per bushel.. 50.08 $0.11 $0.08; $0.11 $0.08 $0.10 $0.06 $0.07 $0.05 $0.04 $0.07 $0.04 Corn, per bushel... 08 11 089 11 08 . 10 06 .07 .05 04 07 .04 Flour, per barrel. .60

60 .72

.72 .48 .60 .86 .36 .48 .36 Bacon, per 2,240 lbs. 6.00 7.80 6.00 8.40 6.00 7.20 4.80 7.20 4.20 3.60 4. 20 3.00 Lard, per 2,240 lbs. . 6.00 7.80 6.00

8.40 4.80 6.60 4.80 5.40 3.60 3.00 4.20 3.00 Beef, per tierce 1. 20 1.44 1.20

1.44 96 1.32 .72 1.08 72 .60 72 .48 Pork, per barrel. 84 96 84 36

72

48

60 Cotton, per pound.. .0018 .0076 .001 .001 003 .0070 .000 .000 .001 .0036 .00 .0035 Apples, per barrel.. 72 72 .72

66 .72 60

60 .72 .60 .48 Butter, per 2,240 lbs. 9.60 9.60 9.60 10.80 9.60 9.60 8.40 8.40 7.207.20 8.40

7.20

.81

.84

.48

.36

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For comparison and record the following tables, showing the annual average rates upon wheat and the monthly average rates upon grain from New York to Liverpool for a series of years, are presented: Average cost per bushel for transporting wheat from New York to Liverpool for the

years 1866-'90.

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Average monthly price paid per bushel for carrying grain from New York to Liver. REPORT OF THE MICROSCOPIST.

pool for the years 1886–’ğ0.

Months.

1886.

1887.

1888.

1889.

1890.

January
February
March..
April.
May
June
July
August.
September.
October
November
December

Pence. .Cents. Pence. Cents. Pence. Cents. Pence. Cents. Pence. Cents.
3.37 6.75 4.91 9.83

2.41
4.83

4.16 8.33 5.33 10.66 2.33 4.66 8. 66 7.33

1.83 3.66 4.33 8.67 5.41 10.83 2.41 4.83 3. 16 6.33 .83 1.66 3. 96 7.92

5.00 10.00 3. 66 7.33 1.50 3.00 .43 .87 2.91

5.83 3.50

7.00 3.79 7.58 1.58 3.16

62 1.25 2. EO 5.00 2.00 4.00 4.75 9.50 2. 12 4.25 1.66 3. 33

3. 41 6.83 2.00 2.83

4.00 5.66 2. 62 5.25 1.75 3.50 8.00 6.00 2. 33 4.66 1.83 8. 66

8.00 6.00 2.33 4. 66 4.33 8. 67 2. 66 6.83 2. C6 5.33 1.89 8.66 5. 33

10. 66

4.08 8.17 1.50 3.00 4.00 8.00 2.00 4,00 4.50

9.00
5.41 10.83

1.50

3.00 4.25 8.50

8.50 7.00 4.50 9.00 5.58 11.17 1.29 2.58 4. 66 9.33 8.00 6.00 5.87 11.75 5.00 10.00 3.00 6.00

SIR: I have the honor to submit herewith my nineteenth annual report upon the work done in the Division of Microscopy. This work relates largely to the microscopy of foods, food fats, and oils.

A number of lard compounds have been examined and reported on, at the special request of the Agricultural Committee of Congress. I have also investigated a number of samples of various brands of lard and lard compounds for and at the request of the Executive Committee of the National Grange of Virginia. Certain fibers have been investigated for and at the request of the Secretary of the Treasury, and also a different class of fibers for and at the request of the Postmaster-General.

I have brought to completion my invention for testing the tensile strength of textile fibers, and it will be used during the current year.

The miscellaneous work of the Division has varied from the examination of suspected butters from dealers and others to investigation of the material of wrappers of cheap cigars sold at 2 cents apiece, and includes special work as may be required for other Divisions of the Department.

As much interest has been manifested by our correspondents in the United States in relation to my paper on the edible mushrooms of the United States and their cultivation, I have prepared, with the approval of the Assistant Secretary, a more extended paper on this subject, with additional illustrations of both edible and poisonous varieties, including an account of the various European methods of mushroom culture. Specimens of edible and poisonous mushrooms have been received from Alabama, Ohio, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia.

Samples of pure fish liver oils of many varieties, have been received from Hon. Marshall McDonald, U. S. Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries; of pure native olive oil from Mr. S. S. Goodrich, of the Quito Olive and Vine Farm; of the pure seed oils from the late F. S. Pease, manufacturer of pure oils, Buffalo, New York.

The correspondence of the Division receives careful and prompt attention. Very respectfully:

THOMAS TAYLOR,

Microscopist. Hon. J. M. RUSK,

Secretary.

THE SILVER TEST FOR ADULTERATIONS OF LARD AND OILS.

HOW TO DETECT FICTITIOUS LARD.

On receiving samples of suspected lards I first heat 2 ounces of each sample in a porcelain evaporating basin over a slow fire until the lard begins to fume, when it is removed and allowed to cool slowly in the same basin in a temperature of about 75° F. If the sample is a composition of stearin and cotton-seed oil it will cool in a few minutes, but if it is pure lard it will require perhaps from three quarters of an hour to an hour to cool. Fats thus treated will yield very fine typical crystals. By means of the microscope, without using chemicals, the crystals of lard may be distinguished from those of oleo, stearin, palmitin, stearic acid, or palmitic acid.

Having obtained satisfactory proof in this direction, I next proceed to my second test, viz, that of the color reactions brought about by treating the samples with a solution of nitrate of silver.

Before making experiments with chemical tests upon “commercial lards” it is obvious that one should be familiar with the results of the same tests upon the individual oils and fats which may enter into their composition. “Commercial lard” is largely made up of stearin and cotton-seed oil. Sometimes there is a trace of pure lard in it, but generally speaking not any. My method of using the nitrate of silver solution in testing commercial lards is based upon experience gained by ascertaining, first, the reactions of the nitrate of silver of various degrees of strength on the pure fats used singly, and secondly, upon combinations of these fats.

How to prepare the silver test.–First, dissolve the nitrate of silver in distilled water to saturation. To 1 fluid ounce of this add 2 fluid ounces of distilled water, and mix well in a perfectly clear stoppered bottle. The test tubes used should be well made, five eighths of an inch in diameter by 6 inches in length. Each tube should be numbered. Into each pour two cubic centimeters of the fat to be tested, made liquid by heat. Secure the contents with a well-fitting cork, and mix quickly while the fat is quite liquid, Remove the cork and heat the silver and fat evenly from end to end of the tube. Bring the silver solution to the boiling point. The vapor of the silver solution retained in the oil should show signs of bursting into steam. Heating and boiling should be accomplished in about one minute and the tube then replaced in the rack to cool.

Oleic acid, marked chemically pure, from Eimer and Ahmend, on being boiled with the silver solution one minute becomes slightly cloudy, as if it contained a solid fat of a light chrome color, and the silver solution becomes highly charged with what appears to be a silver precipitate of a brownish-pink color, whether viewed by transmitted or reflected light. This pinkish colored precipitate of silver has been observed to occur on three occasions with other oils; once with linseed oil, once with poppy seed, and once with peanut oil. I think when it occurs it indicates the presence of free oleic acid. Stearic acid submitted to the same test showed no change of color or precipitate of silver. Palmitic acid gave the same results. Glycerine, a component part of fats, I treated in like manner. Price's glycerine was used, adding a small portion of alcohol simply for the purpose of thinning it, so that if the silver were deoxidized it would readily precipitate. On boiling the solution a silver stain became

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