« AnteriorContinuar »
The heat of the summer months is not excessive; the days are warm and bright, generally with a fine breeze at all times, from the west, southwest, and south, and the nights cool and pleasant. The temperature and duration of this season is adapted to perfect all the products natural to the latitude, and is not oppressive.
Autumn in Wisconsin is the most charming season of the year. A soft haze rests on every object, mellowing the distant landscape, dreamy in the lingering sunshine of the dying year.
In winter the weather is uniform, and free from those sudden variations of temperature to which most other latitudes are subject; owing to the stillness of the air, and the absence of moisture from the atmosphere, the cold is less perceptible than in more moderate climes, where the winds are high and the air raw and damp. Snow remains on the ground till the thaws of spring, but never falls to as great a depth as in the New England and Middle States. Navigation of the rivers is usually suspended by the 1st of December. The Mississippi closes by the middle of this month, and opens the latter part of March. Lakes Michigan and Superior generally close and open about the same time.
From Mr. Seymour's work' we quote the following:
"It is, indeed, delightful in speculation to talk of constant spring, of perpetual verdure, of flowers in bloom at all seasons, of purling brooks never obstructed by ice, of a mild climate, where Jack Frost never has the audacity to pinch one's nasal proboscis or spread his white drapery
i The New England of the West.
over the surface of the earth ; but it is a problem, not yet fully solved, whether a tropical climate contributes more to one's happiness than the varying seasons of a Northern clime.
"Nay, whatever doubt there is on the snbject predominates in favor of a Northern latitude. Industry, intelligence, morality, and virtue, are exhibited more generally among the inhabitants of Northern latitudes than those of Southern.
“If one's physical enjoyment is equally promoted by the bracing air of a cold climate, then, indeed, the argument is in favor of the latter, for vigor of body and purity of mind are the most essential ingredients in the cup of happiness. The air of our winters is dry and bracing. When snow falls it usually remains on the ground several months, forming an excellent road either for travelling, business or pleasure.
" The rivers are securely wedged with ice, rendering many portions of the country more accessible at that season than at any other. An excellent opportunity is afforded to the younger portion of the community for innocent amusements—sleighing, sliding downhill, and skating - amusements highly exhilarating, and promotive alike of health and happiness. These observations have been made because a greater value is often set on a mild southern climate, in reference to its capacity in affording the means of happiness or of health, than it really possesses."
We have always made it a point to inquire of new settlers in Wisconsin how they liked the climate, and the answer invariably was, that it was far superior to that of the States they had left. whether Eastern, Middle or Southern. One emigrant says :
"As the result of my observations, I would state briefly - and in this I do but repeat a common sentiment - that I would much rather
spend a winter in Wisconsin than in New York or Pennsylvania. True, the weather is cold; but it is of that settled, steady, clear character, which we here call 'bracing weather.' No damp winds, no sloppy thaw, no uncomfortable rains, but day after day the same unbroken field of snow, the same clear, bright sunshine, the same untroubled air. Winter here holds undisputed sway; it is not a muddled mixture of all seasons, in which the breezy spring, the clear autumn, the sunny summer and the rigorous winter mingle and mix, and come and go together. You will understand the force of this distinction when I tell you that the first fall of snow in Wisconsin remains on the ground during the whole winter without a crust; so free is the air from that dampness which, in other countries, produce it. Who among you has not noticed the penetrating character of dampness in cold — its chilling, searching qualities; or who, on the other hand, has not gone abroad on days of intense coldness, but when the air was dry and pure, and felt elastic, buoyant, and comfortable. Such is a Wisconsin winter. I suffered less from the cold while here, than I have many times in Pennsylvania when the thermometer stood much higher."
The general opinion of physicians is, that consumption, that fearful scourge of the human race, which desolates so many thousand happy homes yearly in the Atlantic States, is not a disease of this climate; where it occurs here, it being almost universally in those who have brought it with them, or in whom it is in a marked degree hereditary. It is also a singular fact, that persons suffering from asthma, or "phthisic," have been greatly relieved, or, in some in stances, permanently cured, by a residence in this climate.
From a table of the last United States census, (an impartial report, of course,) we obtain the following facts. This table gives the relative health, increase and deaths
among the inhabitants of the several States, and illustrates that the number of deaths in ratio to the number of living is: in the State of Maine, 1 to 77; Vermont, 1 to 100; Connecticut, 1 to 64; Illinois, 1 to 73; Iowa, 1 to 94; Wisconsin, 1 to 105; — and this is not only a fair comparison among the above-named States, but, proportionate to the population, exhibits fewer deaths in Wisconsin than in any State in the Union.
AGRICULTURAL ADVANTAGES, SOIL,
WISCONSIN offers more and better inducements for agriculture than any other country can boast, and, owing to its geological formations, presents a great variety of soils. By the late census, and other data, it may be safe and fair to calculate that there are about one and a half millions acres of cultivated land in the State, which, as now occupied, constitutes about 50,000 farms, more or less tilled.
Besides this one and a half millions acres of improved land, there is, within the area of the State, above 30,000,000 acres of land, of which at least 20,000,000 is suitable to be converted into productive and pleasant farms
- enough land to make two millions additional farms waiting for occupants, and may be purchased at low prices, ranging from $1.25 to $60 per acre.
In regard to the value of improved lands in the new States, the same report shows that the average value is : in Illinois, $7.99 ; in Iowa, $6.09; in Texas, $1.09; and in Wisconsin it is $9.58—a very fair show for a young State.
And by looking carefully through the tables, we find that the average value of products per acre exceeds that of the other States named, in about the same proportion that the land exceeds theirs per acre in value. Draw a line from Manitowoc to Portage, thence directly to the Falls of St. Croix, the farming lands lying south of this line, and comprising nearly one-half the State, are not equalled, in all respects, as farming lands, in any State