Imágenes de páginas

breweries, distilleries, refineries, and, above all, sugar manufactories. There is a rumor of a prospective undertaking in Hungary in behalf of the beet-root sugar interest, viz., the establishment of a manufactory with large experimental rooms attached. It is intended to be a complete sugar manufactory, with accommodations for fifty students from various parts of Austria. These students will have the advantages of a large manufactory in operation, and opportunities for study and experimeut. The intention is to establish it under government patronage; the whole concern, after a stipulated number of years, to belong to the pation, in consideration of a yearly subsidy from government to assist in carrying out its purposes during this interval.

“ The second duty of experimental stations is to teach, or to convey to the people, the advantages deducible from study and esperiment; to make possible the practical adaptation of the theoretical truth discovered.

“The third duty is to warn ; to be the people's true knight, tighting off from them falsehood and trickery. In the one field of adulterated and worthless manures are sufficient opportunities for science to expose and defeat impostures.

“The locations of experimental stations is now the subject of much discussion. They were first established on isolated estates, generally remote from great cities, chiefly because scientific land owners offered the land and certain assistance to such enterprises. Now, lowever, the necessity for locating them near large cities, and in connection with acad. emies and universities, is urged. The ground for such change is twofold: the necessity of fuil apparatus for experiment, and an increase of the staff of scientific workers. At isolated stations the investigations must be chiefly chemical, as a chemist is in charge, generally without allied workers in other departments of natural science, and the means for experiments are generally such as a chemical laboratory can furnish; but scientific agriculture calls for aid from mineralogy, geognosy, physics, physiology of plants, physiology of animals, &c. Such union of strength can at present only be reached for experimental stations when, by connection with academies or universities, they have the co-operation of the entire faculties of such institutions. If means were iulimited, agricultural stations, lowever isolated, might command such corps of workers; but while the investments for experimental stations are so small, only their union with institutions can sufficiently broaden their scope. Again, in isolated localities, only such students as make practical agricultural chemistry a specialty could turn aside to avail them. selves of the advantages of such stations. Allied to institutions, the advantage is reciprocal; the station drawing strength from the faculty and apparatus of the institution, and the students of the high-school or university having access to all the records and participation in the ex. periments of the station. Considering the meager expenditure upon experimental stations, the results upon the agriculture of the country bare been most remarkable. Within this decade they have cost, at bigliest, forty thousand thalers, hardly enough to maintain a company of soldiers for the same length of time; and yet with this paltry outlay they are expected to revolutionize the agriculture of Germany.

"More important than the place chosen for experimental stations is the working capital at their conimand. Only with a liberal outlay of money and time can liberal results be reached. Not lightly does nature allow man to wrest the seal from her treasury of secrets." I remain, most truly, your obedient servaut,

J. H. MCCHESNEY. Fion. HORACE CAPRON, Commissioner.


SIR: In obedience to your request, I present a few statements showing the progress and condition of the beet-sugar enterprise in Europe, after personal investigation of the operations of each establishment.

The time when sngar first became known in Europe cannot be stated with any certainty, but the statements of various authors, such as Theophrastus, Plinius, Paulus Ægineta, and others, leave no doubt that cane juice, boiled to sirup, was known, and used as a medicine by the most ancient. people. Still earlier, the art of making sugar appears to have been known by the Chinese, Alexander von IIumboldt having seen Chinese paintings on porcelain of great age representing various methods of working sugar cane and extracting its juice. Asia undoubtedly is the mother country of sugar, whence it was first brought by the Turks to Cyprus, in the ninth and in the eleventh century; also to Rhodes, Sicily, and Crete, and probably all around the Mediterranean; thence by the crusaders, especially by the Venetians, to the inore western countries. Later, perhaps in the fifteenth century, it found its way over Madeira and the Canary Islands to Brazil; and, in the sixteenth century, to the West India Islands. There is no doubt that the cultivation of sugar cane on a large scale was first introduced into America, and especially into the West Indies, by the Europeans.

The first importation of sugar iuto Europe which is particularly known was in the year 996, into Venice. In the year 1319 the Venetians brought a cargo of 100,000 pounds of sugar and 10,000 pounds of rock candy to London. The first sugar refinery on the continent of Europe was built in Augsburg, in the year 1573, by a man named Roth. Another was built in Dresden, in the year 1597. While in its early days sugar was found only in apothecaries' shops, and used as a medicine, it is counted now among the provisions, and has become a necessity second only to meat and tour.

The first discovery of beet sugar was made the 3d of March, 1747, by the Prussian chemist Margraaf, (Andrea Sigismund,) director of the philosophical section of the Academy of Science at Berlin, who read, at its general meeting, an essay, in which he proved the existence of cane sugar in inany home-grown roots. He stated that the most sugar was to be found in the Silesian beet, produced samples, and specified the method by which he had obtained them, and proved it not only practicable, but remunerative, to produce beet sugar on a large scale. It will be borne in mind that this was during a time of war, when the ordinary means of transportation were interrupted and money for importations was scarce, in consequence of which sugar was high; but, as soon as peace was restored, sugar prices went down, and the great interest taken in producing it at home died out.

No sooner, however, had war commenced again, than the subject of beet sugar production was resumed. Shortly after 1790, Achard built on an estate (Cunern) in Silesia, which the King of Prussia had presented to him for the purpose, the first beet-sugar factory. In this factory lie worked, supported by the Prussian government and under the observation of a government officer, 7,000 pounds of beets per day, from

which he obtained six per cent. of raw, or five per cent of white sugar. In November, 1799, Van Mons cansed a letter to be published in the Annales de Chimie, written by Achard, in which he described the results obtaineil in his sugar works at Cunern. He states the cost price of raw sugar to be 5.4 cents per pound English, (65 centimes* per kilogram, t) besides the beet pulp, beet leaves, and molasses; the former be used for fattening cattle, and the molasses for making alcohol.

These results caused a great sensation in France. All the newspapers republished them. The enormously high price which sugar commanded after France had abolished slavery in lier colonies was the reason why the National Institute of France appointed a cheinist of great celebrity to examine this new process and report upon it. M. Deyeux made his report in 1800, and, although he considered the advantages to be derived from beet-sugar industry overestimated, two experimental factories were established near Paris—one at St. Rouen, the other in the old abbey of Chelles. Neither of the two reached results which could be compared with those of Achard, and were, therefore, closed again, and for a long time were the langhing-stock of those who knew of them. Meantime, two new factories had been built in Germany, one by the Baron von Koppy, in Silesia, the other by the celebrated Mathusius, in Althaldensleben, near Magdeburg. The publicity given to the results obtained by the three German beet-sugar factories drew anew the attention of the French gov. ernment to the subject, and new trials were made iu 1810 by Deyeux and Derosne, and in 1811 by Barrud and Isnard, with the German method of extracting the sugar from the beet, and the result obtained proved more satisfactory. The war which devastated Germany during 1813, 1814, aud 1815 left the country in an exhausted condition, from which it did not recover for many years. Industry in general was paralyzed, and no efforts were made to perfect the system of sugar making. It was dif. ferent, however, in France. The new impulse given to chemistry and engineering showed its effect on the sugar factories, which were considerably improved, one of the principal improvements being the use of animal charcoal. In 1828 one hundred and three factories were making beet sugar in France, producing three thousand three hundred tons of sugar, and during the year 1836–37, fifty-five thousand tons; but, in consequence of a tax being levied on it, the production fell the following year to twenty. five thousand tons.

The beet-sugar production in Germany or in the Zollverein made little progress till 1836, but it has since reached such dimensions that it not only supplies the home demand, and prevents cane sugar from coming into competition, but has become a regular article of export, competing in the English and the Dutch markets with the sugar of the tropics. The table (A) shows the enormous dimensions which the beet-sugar industry has attained during the period between 1836 and 1867. Of the one hundred and twenty-two factories in operation in 1836, ninety belonged to Prussia and thirty-two to the various other states of the Zollverein. During the year 1866–67 two hundred and ninety-six factories were engaged in making beet sugar, two hundred and fifty-seven of which were located in Prussia and its provinces, while only thirty-nine were in the other states of the Zollverein. The increase in the number of factories bas been almost exclusively in Prussia, where its number was trebled during thirty-two years. The tax levied on beet sugar in 1840–41, of 0.575 cents per centnerț of green beets, diminished the whole number

* Centime, $0.00192.

Kilogram, 2.204737 pounds.
Centner, (Prussian,) 113.44 pounds.

of working sugar-factories from one hundred and fifty-two to one hun. dred and forty-five; in 1842–43 the tax was doubled, when the number was reduced to ninety-eight factories.

The small and poorly-constructed establishments could not compete with the new and larger ones, nor with the canc-sugar refineries, the proprietors of which strained every nerve to drive beet sugar out of the market, and the former, therefore, had to suspend work. Althongh, in 1843–44, factories were at work again, the number was reduced to ninetyeight the next year, and to ninety-six in the following year, the tax har. ing been again increased. Since 1846–47 the production las taken a decided start, the number of factories having grown from year to year, and they emancipated themselves from the canc-sugar refineries by producing either molasses or white loaf-sugar direct from the beet juice, without first working it into raw sugar; so that when, in 1850-'51, the tax on beet sugar was again doubled, it did not prevent new factories from being built.

While the number of sugar factories increased, the quantity of the beet worked by the saine increased in a far greater ratio. It must be taken into consideration that official tigures have been kept only since 1810_'41, wlieu recorıls were commenced on account of the tax to le levieil, and comparisons should be made only of years included in the official figures. Accordingly, the columns 2 and 3. table A, show that during the twentyseven years from 18-10-'11 to 1860-'67 the number of working factories increased from one hundred and forty-five to two hundred and ninetysix, making an iucrease of about one hundred and four per cent., while the quantity of beets worked in these factories increased from 4,829,731 cwts. (of one hundred pounds) to 50,712,709 cits., making an increase of nine hundred and fifty per cent. Of course the quantity of beets worked by each factory must hare increased in proportion, as may be seen by column 15, table A, according to which each factory worked, on an arerage, in 1836–37, 4,155 cwts., or 227 English tons; in 1840–41, 33,309 ; while in 1866–67 the high average of 171,327 was reached. The variations in columns 3 and 15 of table A are the results of unfavorablo beet crops. According to column 8, table A, the internal revenue or tax paid on the beets has increased from a quarter of a cont to seren and a half cents, or thirty-fold, while the actual revenue derired, as given in column 9, has increased from 40,248 thalers* to 12,678,177 thalers, or nearly three hundred and fifteen fold.

These averages are correct according to the best authorities, and go to show the enormous progress made not only in manufacturing beet sugar, but in cultivating and producing beets. It is obvious that the great variation in the average weather of the various years necessarily accounts for the variations of percentage of sugar and foreign matter in the beets, and the more or less difficult working of the same.

The systems of taxation in the different countries influence the gen. eral result in many particulars. In Prussia, or the Zollverein, the beets are washed and trimmed, and then weighed by government officials, and the revenue collected according to the quantity which enters the factory. From that moment the sugar manufacturer is at liberty to work at will, the government taking no notice, or at least not interfering, no matter how rich the beets, or how much or what kind of sugar is made; in fact, leaving him entirely free to do with the beets as he may please, except working them into alcohol. .

* A thaler is about 73 cents.

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

23. 50
23. 40
23. 20


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

21. 70

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

1837- 8.


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Lbs. Per ct. Per ct.
18.00 15.50 4.37
18.00 5. 30 4.30
17, 80

17.40 5.75
$28, 173 17. CO 5.48
28, PX3
50, 745 15. 20 0.58
136, 161 15.00
153, 918 14.70
197, 1-4 14.00 7.14
264, 687 14.30 7.00
340, 383 13.80

403, 3:18 113.00
1,630, 701
1, R), 291
1.530,197 12.40 7.81
2, 63, 784 13.00
9, 641 376
3, 157,572 12.50
3,857, 109
4,118, 118 12.00
6, 416,997

6,019, 480 11.8.)
5, 1361,955 11.60 862
5, 516, 169 12. 60 7.94
6,425, 870 13.30 7.54
6,984, 316 13.20 7.58
7, 287, 210

8. 20
7,604, 235 11.70R. 55
8,874, 724 12. GO 7.94

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

19. 70

[ocr errors]

i cicicici cicicicicicicicici ci si cici

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]




11, 2.35


19. 60
19.50 5. 80
19.40 6.CO
19. 206.30
19. 10 6. 40
19. Co 6.50
18.90 6. 50
18. 806.60
19.00 6. 10
19.20 6.70

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »