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FOREIGN EXCHANGES.

This Department recently entered upon a system of exchange with for. eign governments, societies, and individuals. Brief as has been the period since this system was inaugurated, it has been attended with the most gratifying results. Correspondence has been had with the princi. pal agricultural societies and academies of Europe, societies of natural history, horticultural societies, public libraries, and individuals well known for their attainments in agricultural science. The system has thus far met with the approval of all that practical and sagacious class of men who are the representatives of foreign agricultural interests, to whom it has been presented.

Already the increase of the library of the Department by this means has been considerable. Valuable books and periodicals, English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Danish, and Swedish, have been added, in exchange for our own publications. Contributions to the museum have also been received. Many societies have offered to exchange vines, plants, and seeds, of various descriptions.

It is the design of the Commissioner to extend this system of exchange to embrace, if possible, all civilized countries, expecting to receive in return for the agricultural works of the Department, and valuable speci. mens of American growth and production, contributions of interest and value. The advantages of such a system cannot be overestimated, adding, as it does, to our own experience the practical and theoretical knowledge of other countries. It is within the scope of this design to exchange specimens of mineralogy, botany, entomology, horticulture, &c., with the confident expectation of enriching and adding to the practical value of the museum of the Department.

A few references to the manner in which the system of exchange has been received are presented :

In a communication from the central directors of the agronomical societies of the grand duchy of Posen, dated September 14, 1868, acknowledging the receipt of books and seeds from this Department, for which a suitable exchange was returned, the directors express earnestly a desire 66 to continue for the future and to enhance the custom so happily commenced of communicating to each other the fruits of labor upon a common field."

Alexander Buchan, secretary of the Scottish Meteorological Society, in acknowledging the receipt of reports of this Department, and commu. nicating an offer of a set of the “Transactions” of his society, says, in relation to a system of exchange: “I am much gratified to see the activity with which you have taken up and work at this important practical problem."

James Plaisher, president of the Meteorological Society at Blackheath, England, thus writes: "In addition to the official letter sent, acknowl. edging the receipt of the books with which you have kindly favored the Meteorological Society, I am desirous of carrying out the wishes of the council of three by mentioning how much the interesting series of your Department publications is appreciated. Not only are there many valu. able papers on general science, but there is also much meteorological

information. As president of the society, I beg to add the expression of my own satisfaction, and the great interest with which I witness the intercommunicatiou which you have kindly suggested, and with which the Meteorological Society most gladly co-operate."

The following is an extract from a letter dated Melbourne, September 1, 1868, from George R. Latham, United States consul, to the Commissioner of Agriculture:

“I may here remark that an exchange of publications with the Agricultural Department of the United States will be appreciated by none more highly than by the scientific agriculturists of this colony. The annual reports of your Department are regarded by them as the most valuable agricultural publications in the world."

The following is an extract from a letter of M. Jules Joubert, secretary of the Agricultural Society of New South Wales, dated November 6, 1868:

“One of the most useful works we have had placed before us; and without any exception the most valuable to our colonists, for all matters connected with agriculture, is the report published annually by your office."

Mr. David, director of the Statistical Bureau of the kingdom of Den. mark, in giving notice to Mr. Yeaman, United States minister resident at Copenhagen, of the transmission of reports of his bureau, on agricultural statistics, to this Department, expresses very warmly the utmost interest” which he feels in making exchanges of works upon agriculture, and conveys his hearty thanks for the offer of exchange.

The meteorological committee of the Royal Agricultural Society of Great Britain has signified its appreciation of the mutual benefits of exchange by accepting the offer of this Department; and in return for some recent volumes of departmental reports, has transmitted forty-nine volumes of great interest and value, constituting a series of its own reports, with atlases. It has also signified a desire for future exchanges.

Mr. F. F. Cavada, United States consul at Trinidad de Cuba, in a letter requesting of this Department seeds of cereals, vegetables, &c., and promising others of choice varieties in return, on behalf of American citizens employed in agriculture in Cuba, speaks of the great and reciprocal benefits to be derived from such exchanges between Cuba and the United States-benefits of which this country will naturally reap the superior share.

William S. Mechling, of Belize, British Honduras, joins in the uniform recommendation of a system of exchange. As between this country and British Honduras, he expresses the opinion that such an arrangement would be highly beneficial to both countries;” and touching the productions of Honduras, writes: “I am satisfied that I could send many rare and valuable seeds."

Dr. Jos. D. Hooker, director of the Royal Gardens at Kew, England, in sending seeds of trees gathered from the Himalayas, and acknowl. edging the receipt of seeds of shrubs and trees from this country, also speaks warmly of the benefits of exchange. He promises à large collection of seeds of European and Asiatic shrubs and trees, and of such seeds native here he says: “You cannot go wrong in sending them.”

Eugene Schuyler, United States consul at Moscow, Russia, writes as follows:

“I inclose you a specimen of hemp, prepared by a new process, by Mr. Michael Puzanof, in the government of Kursk. I have not yet been able to learn the details of the process, but will send them to you as soon as I can procure them from Mr. Puzanof.

“Some parts of Smolensk and other western governments are rery swampy, and the Prince Mestchersky has thought it would be well to try to introduce there Zizania aquatica, or Indian rice, which is said to be largely eaten by the Northwestern Indians. He has requested me to procure him some of the seed. Is it in your power to inclose me a package of this seed for the prince? I shall be very happy to oblige him, and am much indebted to you.

“It may interest you to know that there appeared in the February number of the Russian Messenger, the chief monthly journal here, a long and very flattering article on the Agricultural Department over which you preside."

Transmitting seeds from Asia Minor, E. J. Smithers, United States consul at Smyrna, writes to the Department as follows, under date of April 10, 1869:

7 I have the honor to inform you that I have transmitted to your Department, through the United States dispatch agent at London, a small box containing three kinds of seed of the most delicious melons grown in Asia Minor. These seeds were kindly procured by his excellency Ismail Pasha, governor general of this vilayet, and forwarded to this consulate for transmission to your Department.

"I may remark in regard to these varieties of melons, that when kept in a dry place they will remain perfect till mid-winter. Especially is this the case in regard to the Magnesia and Kir Ragatch varieties. As the climate of Asia Minor is very dry after the middle of April or the first of May, until the latter part of September, I would recommend California as the most suitable section of our country for the successful cultivation of these melons."

The following is a copy of Ismail Pacha's letter to Mr. Smithers, transmitting the seeds referred to in the preceding extract:

“ VILAYET OF AIDIN, Smyrna, April 4, 1869. 6 SIR: It has been to me an agreeable duty to be able to realize your desire concerning melon seeds. I have procured three kinds, which you will receive with this letter.

"I will be happy if the committee of agriculture of the United States succeeds in the cultivation of our delicious melons in the New World, ·and I will feel flattered every time the eminent members of this committee require my feeble help, which will always be accorded to them so far as I am able. On their side, if they would sometimes send us seed capable of being acclimatized in these fine regions of Asia Minor, I would feel grateful. “Please to accept, sir, the assurance of my high consideration.

“ISMAIL. “E. J. SMITHERS, Esq., United States Consul."

Auguste Dupuis writes from Village des Aulnaies, L'Islet County, province of Quebec, as follows:

“ You have been kind enough to send me the report for 1867. This valuable report to the agriculturists of the United States would be profitable to farmers in all parts of the world. The farmers of your beautiful country ought to be proud of being represented by men who are elevating agriculture to its proper position.

66 They receive in this report lessons numerous and profitable. They can make comparisons between the methods pursued in States adjoining their own.

“ You deserve much from your countrymen for this great work."

José Martinez de Hor, president of the Rural Society of the Argentine Republic, South America, writes as follows:

" It affords me pleasure to acknowledge the receipt of your esteemed favor of the 25th September, 1868, and to return you infinite thanks for the books which you have sent to this society. This courtesy has been highly appreciated, and in return you will receive, through Dr. C. H. Trumbull, the second volume of the annals of the society. We will send each year the volume containing the publications of the society, and hope to merit in return published works and reports of your Department, because of their interest to a body like ours, which has for its object the illustration and stimulation of the rural prosperity of the country.

"With great satisfaction we accept your offer to send certain seeds, &c., for trial in our soil, and are happy to respond to your invitation to send samples of the products of this country, and have already taken measures to send you a shipment in May, 1870.

“ Preparations are being made for an Argentine exposition at Cordova, about the 17th of April, 1870. We shall improve that occasion to prepare a collection of all seeds considered useful or desirable for trial in the United States, and shall notify you promptly of shipment, and at the same time forward instructions in reference to their cultivation. We have assurances that a number of intelligent agriculturists are preparing, as well to exhibit their products at the exposition, as to send selected samples to your Department.

“Understanding the importance to this country of a reciprocal exchange of agricultural productions with your Department, and appreciating fully the honorable intention of your propositions, the Rural Society of the Argentine Republic acknowledges your courtesy, and salutes you with an expression of its most distinguished consideration."

Exchanges of seeds, plants, and native productions have been proposed and agreed upon between this Department and the following foreign governments, societies, and individuals:

Austria.-The Imperial Agricultural Society.
Australia.-Botanical gardens, Melbourne.
Argentine Republic.-Agricultural Society of the Argentine Republic.
Brazil.—Dr. Joseph Cooper Reinhart, Campinas.
British Honduras.-W. S. Mechling, Esq., Belize.
Bavaria.—Royal gardens of Bavaria.
Cape of Good Hope.—Cape of Good Hope Agricultural Society.
China.-The Chinese government.
Denmark.-The Statistical Bureau of Denmark.

England.—India Museum, London; Kew gardens, do.; Royal Meteorological Society, do.

France.—Jardin des Plantes, Paris.
Guatemala.The government of Guatemala.
Japan.—The Japanese government.
Poland.-Polish Agricultural Society, Posen.
Porto Rico.-George Latimer, Esq., St. John's.
Scotland.-Scottish Meteorological Society, Edinburgii.
Spain.-Royal gardens of Madrid.

The foreign societies to which reports of this Department have been forwarded, with reference to exchange of publications, are as follows:

AFRICA.
Cape Town.–Agricultural Society.
Mauritius.--Société d'Histoire Naturelle de l'Ile Maurice.

AMERICA, EXCLUSIVE OF BRITISH AMERICA.

Bogota, New Granada.-Sociedad de Naturalistas Neo-Granadinos.

Georgetown, British Guiana.-Royal Agricultural and Commercial Society.

Havana, Cuba.--Real Sociedad Economica de la Habana. Mexico, Mexico.-Escuela de Agricultura; Sociedad Mexicana de Geografia y Estadistica.

Rio Janeiro, Brazil.-Sociedad Auxiliadora de Industria Nacional.

ASIA.

Batavia.-Natuurkundige Vereeniging in Nederlandsch Indie.
Calcutta.-Agricultural and Horticultural Society of India.
Manilla.-Royal Economical Society of the Philippine Islands.

AUSTRALIA.

Melbourne.-Acclimatization Society; Botanic garden.

Sydney.-Australian Horticultural and Agricultural Society; Entomo. logical Society of New South Wales.

BELGIUM.

Brussels Société Centrale d'Agriculture de Belgique; Société Entomologique de Belgique; Société de Flora; Société Palæontologique de Belgique; Société Royale de Botanique de Belgique; Société Royale protectrice des Animaux. Ghent.-Société Royale d'Agriculture et de Botanique. Namur.-Société Agricole et Forestière de la Province de Namur.

DENMARK.

Copenhagen.-Botaniske Forening; Bureau Royal de la Statistique; Danske Landmands-Forsamling, (Association of Danish Agriculturists;) Kongelige Bibliothek, (Royal Library;) Kongelige Danske Videnskabernes-Selskab, (Royal Danish Society of Science;) Kongelige Landhuusholdnings-Selskab, (Royal Society of Rural Economy ;) Naturhistoriske Forening; Naturhistorisk Tidsskrift; Tidskrift for Veterinær, (Vet. erinary Journal ;) Veterinær-Selskab, (Veterinary Society.)

FRANCE.

Association Scientifique de France.
Abbeville.-Société Linnéenne du Nord de France.
Aix.-Académie des Sciences, d'Agriculture, Arts et Belles-Lettres.

Angers.—Société d'Agriculture, Sciences et Arts; Société Linnéenne du Département de Maine-et-Loire.

Angoulême.—Société d'Agriculture, Sciences, Arts et du Commerce du Dép. de la Charente.

Bayeux.--Société d'Agriculture, Science, Arts et Belles-Lettres.

Bordeaux.-Société d'Horticulture de la Gironde ; Société Linnéenne de Bordeaux.

Caen.-Société d'Agriculture et de Commerce de Caen; Société des Antiquaires de Normandie.

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