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8.0 per cent, it is obvious that it would take from four to which appeared in the first paper read. In the first place, five tons of fresh fish to produce one ton of the manure referring to the supply of guano, he might observe there in the condition of dryness as stated. If, therefore, we had been an increasing sale each year, though the papers take the most favorable estimate which the statements at of the House of Commons did not enable the:n to decide present made seem to justify, namely, that one ton of fish, on the exact quantities imported. He believed the reaor its offal, could be delivered on shore for 30s., it would son why there was nearly a deficiency last year arose from then appear that from 61. to 71. must be paid for the raw the desertiou of the sailors from the vessels in Australia material only at the place of landing of one ton of manure: which were under engagements to call for the guano to which must be added the cost of sulphuric acid, of on their voyage home. He had always looked upon fish the drying, of labour of boys, transports, &c.
manure of great importance, and some years ago he tried For these reasons, I think it will be very difficult to some experiments by which he found he could obtain produce a manure of the kind in question which can a large quantity of oil and valuable manure from fish. be sold to the farmer at much less than the present He recommended it to Mr. Fisher Hobbs and other wellprice of Peruvian guano. It would seem indeed, from known agriculturalists, and told them the supply of calculation, that unless offal fish and fish-ofsal could be guano would not last more than a few years, whilst there obtained at an almost nominal price, it would at present was plenty of fish round their own shores. Mr. Lawes’obbe almost impossible to establish a manufacture which jection to the use of the fish guano appeared to be that could so compete with the manures now in the market it would not digest chemically, and that when dried, it as to hold out a prospect of success both to the producer would not act so well on the ground. Now there had and the consumer. And how far also a decline in the been large importations of late of a peculiar manure from present supplies of natural guano, as well as a much re- South America; it was the dried filesh of animals killed duced estimate of the cost of the fresh fish and oftal at Buenos Ayres principally for their hides. The best might affect the result, is of course a further question. parts of the flesh were selected for food, and the rest boiled DISCUSSION.
down for the fat; after which it was dried and sent to
This flesh manure, though Mr. HoRack Green said that though the paper of Mr. highly dried, was found to act well for wheat, and he
this country for manure. Lawes was very valuable, it must not be forgotten that that had no doubt that dried fish would also act and give gentleman was himself a large manufacturer of guano. forth the ammoniacal and other properties required for the He did not like the introduction of phosphate of lime, as food of plants. The amount of artificial manure used
in this he himself dealt largely in that article. The guano now kingdom was 5,000,000 or 6,000,000 tons a-year; and he brought before them, however, did not contain so much believed, until that amount got up to 50,000,000 or of phosphate as of ammoniacal properties, which were best 60,000,000, there would be no limit to the demand. He for the staff of man's life-wheat; while the guano of Mr. thought that if the fish guano could be obtained at & Lawes was best for turnips and green crops—the food of reasonable price, it would be productive of great results. beasts.
Of the dried flesh, only about 9 per cent. was ammonia; Mr. Mechi came from rather a fish country-Essex but it had been proved to be very good for wheat. where it had long been the practice to manure the land The manure was sold at about 61. per ton. Thousands of with fish, and it was the conviction of the farmers in tons of it had been used, but the supply had been interthat district that within a certain distance of the coast-say rupted owing to the disturbances in Buenos Ayres. eight or ten miles,—the sale of fish would successfully Mr. DuGaLD CAMPBELL had only had his attention compete with guano. The smell of the fish applied to turned to the matter a day or two since, when he obthe land in the hundreds of Essex was very great, and no tained a copy of the specification of Mr. Pettitt's patent doubt it lost a great portion of its power by the escape of to ascertain its objects. On turning it over he found that the ammonia, which would be probably set in it if pre- one part of it provided for the decomposition of animals pared with sulphuric acid. The farmers ploughed it into the
as well as fish-a matter highly important in a commerground as quickly as possible, as it might otherwise be smelt cial and chemical point of view. Some years ago Mr. for a mile or two, and large quantities were carried off by Turnbull, of Glasgow, the proprietor of Turnbull's blue, the gulls. There could be no doubt that fish manure was produced in his manufactory a large quantity of muriatic good for root crops. The star-fish, or five-fingers, fetched acid, which he did not know what to do with. Being of 6d. a bushel, and sprats 8d., excepting in very cold an ingenious mind, and mixing a great deal with farmers, weather, when the latter article rose in price in conse- he took to buying up dead horses, and boiling them in quence of the quantities sent up to the London market. the acid to a pulp, which was then converted into dry That might, however, be considered the average price, Aesh manure, for which it was sold. He had seen speci. which would give them ls. 6d. per cwt. or 30s. a ton. mens of it, and found it contained a large proportion of Large vessels were employed at Holbury and other places muriate and sulphate of ammonia. If the agricultural to catch fish for agricultural purposes. Mussels were also magazines of Scotland were attentively searched for a few extensively used in their shells, their cost being about 20s. years back, he had no doubt an account of the manufacper ton. The guano at 30s. per ton would no doubt be ture would be found. He did not know whether Mr. valuable, but how far its being dried and cured, so as to Turnbull had applied his process to fish as well as animals, obtain the oil, would enable it to be sold at that price, of but the idea of preparing manure from the flesh of animals course he could not give an opinion. If they could fix by sulphuric and muriatic acids was certainly not new. the ammonia by the use of sulphuric acid, it would of Mr. Mechi might observe that Mr. Hudson, of Castlecourse add to the value of the manure.
acre, having a few years since lost a large quantity of Professor John Wilson, during the reading of the sheep, which he had imported, by small pox, he had them first paper, noticed two or three inaccuracies, which he decomposed into manure for turnips, and met with great would have corrected but for the paper of Mr. Lawes just success. In reply to a question from Mr. Longmead, Mr. read, with which he fully agreed in every particular. If Mechi said that all the animal refuse of his farm, as well the matter were tested further, he had great reason to be as dead animals, were thrown into his tank for decom. lieve the cost of Mr. Pettitt's guano would be found to position ; and he, therefore, had no doubt that his liquid be underrated.
manure contained a large quantity of carbon in solution. In reply to a question from Mr. Mechi,
Mr. JAMES CAIRD did not wish to enter into the merits Mr. Green said it was impossible to give an opinion of the fish manure, but would address himself to the pracon the cost of dessicating the fish, as it must depend on tical part of the question, viz. : Could a sufficient quana variety of circumstances-such as the quantity to be tity of fish be obtained at a price to make the manufacoperated on, the position of the machinery, &c.
ture of the guano profitable? Mr. Lawes said that fish Mr. J. C. Nesbit wished to notice one or two errors | contained 80 per cent. of water, and only about 5 per cent. of
BY E. T. LOSEBY.
guano and 15 per cent. of other products. Mr. Green, on them to the coast of Newfoundland, and the report of the the contrary, said it only contained 40 per cent. of water. Committee of the House of Commons showed that plenty If Mr. Lawes was right the expenses would be at once of seals and fish might be had on the north coast of doubled.
Ireland. Mr. Green then proceeded to read extracts Mr. GREEN could not say that Mr. Lawes had not pro- from a number of letters, to prove that an ample supply duced 80 per cent. of water out of fish ; but their experi- of fish might be obtained at moderate prices. ments left them 40 per cent. of available products.
The CHAIRMAN said that by the rules of their Society, Mr. Pettitt might observe, in answer to Mr. Lawes' and very properly, no decision was ever come to on the statement, that the fish only gave 20 per cent. of solid value of the papers laid before them. There could be product; that he held a specimen in his hand in which no doubt that the subject of utilising refuse materials of there was 16.80 per cent. of bone or phosphate of lime. all kinds, and the more especially of fish, as it would not He believed that on an average he should get 30 tons of only produce them good manure, but add to the food of oil and manure to the 100, and five tons of phosphate the people, was one of the greatest importance. Large of lime. Supposing, however, that a ton of guano could quantities of fish were now thrown away which might be be produced from four tons of fish, that would give them converted into manure, and the practical question was 91. per ton, at a cost of 41. for the raw material, as all whether it would commercially pay. At all events, they kinds of fish, including turbot, cod, &c. could be obtained must feel obliged to Mr. Green for his valuable paper, on the Yorkshire coast at ll. a ton.
and he was sure the Society would have great pleasure in Mr. Mechi said 100 tons at 30s. would amount to 1501., giving him a most cordial vote of thanks. They would and if it produced 30 tons of guano, that would give not be doingj ustice to Mr. Lawes, who, he regretted, was 2701; and the question was, would that remunerate the not present, if they did not also include that gentleman manufacturer?
in the vote. Mr. Caird thought that the raw material could not be The votes of thanks having been passed, obtained at 11. a ton; and if there was a larger demand The Secretary announced that, on Wednesday than at present it would enhance the price. Mr. Bred agreed with Mr. Caird with regard to the Exhibition of recent specimens of Chromo
evening next, there would be a Soiree, when the supply. He did not think it would pay, as a commercial operation, to erect large machinery and trust to a doubtful Lithography and Colour Printing, including supply from the neighbourhood to keep it at work. those from Vienna, would be opened.
Mr. Petritt stated, in reply to a question from Mr Mechri, that he would shortly be ready to supply the artifi
ON RECENT IMPROVEMENTS IN CHRONO. cial fish guano, certainly by next spring. In reference to
METERS. what had been stated by Mr. Campbell, that Turnbull, of Glasgow, was the originator of this guano, he having, years ago, boiled up dead horses in muriatic acid, and
( Concluded from page 59.) sold the produce as manure,
he might observe that the Having now given my own views respecting the imreal nature of Turnbul's manufacture was the production possibility
of producing a compensation by any arrangeof the cyanides from the nitrogen contained in the animal inent of the compound laminæ, the experience of some matter, for the manufacture of his celebrated blue, the others may be added. In 1843, the present Astronomer residuum only being sold for manure. This residuum would Royal, Mr. Airy, first directing my attention to the smallbe totally devoid of ammonia, and would, in fact, only ness of the motion available, informed me that some be a mixture of the phosphate of lime (from the bones of years before he had tried a great number of arrangethe animal) and ineri organic matter, or animal carbon. ments, by calculation, amounting to probably fifty diffeThis being the fact, no claim could be maintained to rent forms, without being able to find any that would the discovery of fish, or even animal guano,
succeed. Mr. Charles Frodsham has also informed me
any kind, by Mr. Turnbull, indeed, there was no analogy be that the late Mr. Arnold left a great variety of shapes tween the two manufactures. As regarded the question of that had been tried with no better success; whilst the supply, if the present fisheries were carried on at a profit, time that has been altogether expended by men of lesser solely for the taking of select eatable fish (and it might note has been enormous, for there is scarcely a person be safely assumed that there was a profit, or they would practically connected with chronometers whose attention be discontinued), how much more successful must this has not been occupied by the subject. And it must be scheme be, combining the profits of the present system remembered that, unlike experiments in most other
arts, with the large profits of the proposed guano manufacture, months are often required for the completion of a single from animal matter of all kinds, drawn without extra trial. The majority of these have expended their time labour from the teeming waters. To suppose a deficiency on plans similar to Mr. Eiffe's, and but few appear to have of supply, was almost to doubt the existence of all kinds been acquainted with the shortness of the motion they had of fish, from the monstrous whale to the humble sprat: to employ, whilst some persons, not content with mechanical and to doubt the taking of these fish, was to set the vast action at one point, have introduced several levers with machinery and activity of our fishery population, aided a view of magnifying the motion; as though the freeby the practical bounty of at least 21. a ton, now paid as dom necessary in the pivots, and the friction of their freight, in the balance against a flock of Peruvian geese.
action, were of no more consequence than they would be Mr. Neseit understood that four-fifths of the fish in ordinary machinery: The last method that remains to caught was returned to the sea as useless, and the ques- be noticed, is the
one introduced and patented by myself, tion was whether this could not be bought up. A company which is represented at Fig. (see next page), where had been projected to obtain, by means of steam and screw it will be observed that mercury is employed to effect vessels, good fish for the London market, and probably the supplemental compensation. In this figure, A is the bar Mr. Pettitt might be enabled to arrange with them for the of the balance, B B is the
ordinary compound rim, CC refuse fish. It was to the refuse fish now thrown away are time-ing screws, and D D are weights for adjusting that the great supply must be looked for.
the primary compensation; E E are the secondary comMr. CAIRD considered the whole of Mr. Pettitt's cal-pensation tubes containing mercury; F F and G G are culation to be based on the cost of refuse fish.
fittings for attaching the tubes to the balance, and I I Mr. Green denied that it was so; it was based on the are screws connecting the parts F and G. These also calculation of fishing or contracting for fish of all kinds, admit of the tubes being turned in or out, to alter their and they might perhaps send the best to market them inclination to the radii of the balance in adjusting the selves. When a deputation recently waited on the Earl secondary compensation. The primary compensation of Clarendon with reference to the fisheries, he referred being effected in the usual manner, it only remains to
the motion produced by its expansion being increased to any amount, by adopting the method employed in thermometers, of making the tube along which the mercury ranges smaller than the reservoir, and sufficient motion being thus obtained, the fluidity of the agent admits of its being directed to or from the centre of the balance at any rate that may be required. The curve and position of the tube necessary to give the proper progression were determined by experiment, and no alteration has been made in this respect in any of my chronometers
that have been tried at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, CHIE
during the last six years. With reference to the second condition, the supplemental tubes are made in the following manner. The tube as first drawn is sorted according to the size of the bore, by causing a thread of mercury, measured on a scale, to pass along it, and afterwards noting the weight in a balance (weighing) sensible to the thousandth of a grain; the bulb is then blown to fit a gauge, and the capacity measured by filling it with mercury, and weighing the contents; the tube is next bent to the proper curve, and after being again filled with mercury, the range is measured by an instrument con
trived for the purpose, capable of showing the expansion explain the action of the secondary, which will be under with great accuracy, after which, the tube is sealed up, stood by a reference to the diagram, Fig. 6, where the with a small portion of air included; a small reservoir Fig. 6.
having been formed at each end of the tube, the one to contain the superfluous mercury,should it get accidentally over heated, the other to prevent the mercury receding into the bulb however excessive the cold. The tubes are subsequently weighed with the mercury included, the range measured a second time, and all the items entered on lables attached. The weight and size of the balance being given, the proper tubes can therefore be selected at once; and by this method it is found in practice that the secondary compensation can always be adjusted to within five-tenths of a second a day throughout the whole range from 10° to 110° Fahrenheit. The adjustment by actual trial is consequently confined to the primary compensation which fulfils the second condition. The third condition, which requires that the auxiliary, when once adjusted, should remain permanent and not liable to derangement, is answered by the mercury being contained in glass tubes hermetically sealed, as no change of expansion can take place any more than in ordinary thermometers; whilst the portion of air left in the tube, together with the capillary fineness of the bore, effectually prevent any motion of the mercury from accidental
And as the secondary compensation does not depend on any mechanical action between it and the primary, the fourth condition is complied with.
Before quitting the subject it may be observed that this is not the first instance in which it has been attempted to employ mercury in the balance, as will be seen from an examination of Le Roy's plans, invented in France during the last century. Le Roy's object was not, however, to provide for the supplemental error, but to employ mercury in the balance as the primary compensation, by sim
ple expansion direct to the centre, after the manner Graline a represents the diameter of the balance, and b its ham had so successfully employed it in the pendulum, circumference, c the curve of the tube, tending from the but as the correction required in the balance was many bulb g to the centre of the balance d; e e are circles con- times greater than that required for the pendulum, its centric with the centre d, and divide the line represent- application as a primary compensation consequently ing the tube into equal parts, corresponding to the posi- failed. In his later plans, Le Roy appears to have tion of the mercury in equal increments of temperature, assisted the mercury by the greater expansion of alcohol, as 10, 20, 30, &c.; ff are lines radiating from the centre, but without success; and had the expansion been suffishowing the different inclinations of each division of the cient to effect the primary compensation, the secondary tube to the radii of the balance. The progressional in- would have remained uncorrected to a somewhat greater crease of motion in the column towards the centre, and amount in this arrangement than in the ordinary balance, consequently its effect on the momentum of inertia of the which has been shown to require a further addition of balance, is shown on the radius nearest the bulb, where it 1-45th of the entire compensation in the progression is crossed by the segments e e. There are also various marked on the diagram, Fig. 1, page 57. modifications to suit the different requirements of box N.B.- Errata in last part of paper. Page 58, col. 1, and pocket chronometers. The principle and action of line 16, for the effect, read no effect." Page 58, col. 2, lines this balance having been described, it will now be tested 14 and 15, for banking instead, read banking. Instead. by the conditions already applied to the other methods. Page 59, col. 1, line 3, for A and B, read B and C. Col. The first condition is fulfilled, as shown in Fig. 6, by 1 2, line 1, for binding, read bending; line 11, for eight substituting a fluid agent for a solid one, which admits of seconds, read eight-tenths of a second.
COTTON FROM THE RIVER PLATE.
Home Correspondence. Mr. G. W. Drabble, writing from Buenos Ayres, under date October 1st, to Mr. J. A. Turner, President of the Manchester Commercial Association says: "I would ob- GOLD AND QUARTZ, THEIR SOURCES AND serve that much more attention is being attached to the
USES. country of Paraguay, as a rich field of enterprise, and as a
SIR,-Some one has said, with laconic brevity,“ dirt is pioneer to what we hope may be continued efforts. A something out of its proper place." The remark is pregsteamer started from this port yesterday to that destina- nant with wisdom. In many of our manufacturing operation, conveying a Company recently arrived from the tions large heaps of dirt accumulate. Gas-tar was long United States, said to be well supported, consisting of in the condition of dirt, till more advanced chemistry several directors, and conveying with them machines for found a place for it. Scoriæ of the iron furnaces is only the cultivation and cleaning of cotton, tobacco, sugar, and just found out to be a very useful glass, and slack at the rice ; saw mills, for the making available for export of the inouth of coal pits is found to be a convertible fuel. So valuable wood that there abounds; and other machines, in the neighbourhood of gold and silver mines, rock-dirt suitable for the development of its resources. If they is piled in heaps, waiting till utility be made, as the are once enabled to establish a footing there, and especially Easterns say to "eat dirt," and thus fatten wealth. if the project of steam navigation up our interior rivers I have been led to these reflections by Professor is accomplished, great results may attend these primary Ansted's report of the results of Mr. Berdan's gold proefforts. Some of the interior provinces of this confedera- ducing process. It seems clear that, so long as gold is tion have been long said to be most suitable for the cul- considered wealth, the inultiplication of it may go on intivation of cotton; and a sample, pronounced to be of very creasing till it reaches that point when a greater value, fine quality, from one of them (Tucuman), was last year of wheat than of gold may be produced by a given quanexhibited in Manchester. I have forwarded, per steamer, tity of labour. Apart from this, the time will come another sample from the neighbouring province of Cata- when, by the operation of two reasons, gold will be conmarca, whose lands are reported as being capable of pro sidered a much less desirable commodity. First, its value ducing a much superior article to any other of those states. as a medium of exchange will lessen in proportion as the I consider, however, that a great difficulty will exist in world becomes civilised. Education-not the tools of eduthe development of this cultivation in any of these inte. cation-mere reading and writing, but education in rior provinces, from the long land carriage required to the sense of mental and moral cultivation, will teach the bring it to an exterie market. The cost of the best present barbarians that paper promises are on the whole qualities there as plucked, say with seed, is 7 to 8 reals as trustworthy as cumbersome coin, and will make the per arroba, if cleaned up there, as must be to give the immoral intellectual man more and more sensible that least hope of successful competition, it is calculated that forgery and swindling will not pay. Secondly, the probathe yield would give about 25 per cent of gross, thus plac-bility is that the yield of gold will be constantly on the ing the cost of an arroba or 251b. at an average of 30 reals; | increase. The hundred weight that has been found may expenses of cleaning would be 2 reals; carriage to Buenos be but the forerunner of many hundreds weight in similar Ayres, per arroba, 6 reais: total, 38 reals; which, taken modes. st to-day's rate of exchange, would net per lb., 8 1-5d. Gold is always metallic, that is to say, is never found In Catamarca the cotton tree has been cultivated regular-chemically combined with any other substance. If com. ly, but attention never having been paid to it as an article bined with other metals mechanically, the combustion of of export, the production has never increased. It is a the other metals will leave the gold pure. Supposing perennial plant, sown in spring and yielding the same therefore the globe to be in a state of internal fusion, the year. It grows about 4ft. to 5ft. high. In the winter it metallic gold would gravitate to the bottom of the furnace, is cut down, but the following spring it shoots up for an- 1 just as iron in fusion sinks through the slag or glass which other year's yield. No great care is paid to it till the foats on the top, but which nevertheless contains small time of gathering the pod, when it is regularly plucked. The particles of iron. Quartz rock may be regarded as the Paraguay and Corrientes plants are of the same class.the qua- slag of the gold furnace. The quartz would seem to lity of the Corrientes cotton has so far been inuchinferior. It have floated on the surface of the gold in a liquid state, is, however, in the same latitude, and the soil is reprel with more or less of gold in it. The sudden opening of sented as being equally fertile, and from its geologicat the crevices in the crust of the earth above it, and then position, that province would seem o be most preferable.
as sudden closing, seems to have forced up the molten The great drawback to the extension of this cultivation slag, and formed veins of it. While rising under the will be the want of labour: the population of Catamarca pressure, particles of gold have become entangled in it, is not more than 40,000; that of Tucuman may be esti- varying from the size of blocks and nuggets to an impalmated at 50,000. But even so, there are so many other pable powder. The larger pieces of the gold would be, as articles of production of great value, and requiring little they are found, in matrices of the quartz; the smaller labour, as tobacco, sugar, &c., that it will be difficult to would be disseminated in the solid masses of slag, when obtain sufficient hands for the plucking and cleaning unless cooled. Gold is so cominonly found in quartz, that proexpressly imported. The requirements of the native popu- bably all contains some small portion, which would be lation are few, and their ambition soon satisfied. It is, found on careful examination. therefore, almost impossible to get them to labour for
The gold and quartz thus thrown up in mountain more than their actual wants. That these countries, fisures by volcanic action, would by the subsequent rain however, present many facilities and aclvantages for the and frost, he broken down in fragments, and washed by extension of this cultivation, cannot be doubted; and alluvial process into the beds of streams and over large equally so that capital, properly laid out, would, with districts, possibly while under water. The heaviest care and energy, give every prospect of ample profit.” lumps would find the lowest level, and probably deep in Several gentlemen, who have seen some samples sent from the beds of the largest streams and rivers, amongst fragthe River Plate, are of opinion that Mr. Drabble has ments of rock, will ultimately be found the largest masses under-estimated the proportion of clean cotton to be ob- of gold. In the quartz rock'it is mostly disseminated in tained from a given weight of that in the seed. They minute particles. (a) state that the proportion would be about 33 per cent., instead of about 25; and if this be so, a proportionate (a) In various publications I have expressed my opinion reduction must be made in Mr. Drabble's estimate for founded on South American experience, that gold probably exthe cost.
ists in as large quantities as what are called the common metals, but that it is deeper down. In a pamphlet published previous to the Californian discoveries, I had ventured to predict that
process of gold assaying amongst the native miners As the stones vary in their speed on the inner and outer of South America is very simple. A fragment of quartz edges, there is a grinding as well as a crushing process. is pounded, and rubbed to powder between two pieces of When the machine is at work, a quantity of quicksilver granite. A bullock's horn, of a black colour, is the only is thrown into the trench, and the quartz with it. A small assay instrument.
It is cut longitudinally into two equal stream of water runs in, and at one portion of the rim pieces, partly on the curve, so that one half forms a kind of there is a hole for it to run over, which it does, carrying long spoon, the inside being polished. The powder being the floating mud with it. As it runs over, it falls into a placed in the spoon, water is poured in it, and shaken, and goat-skin, with quicksilver at the bottom. Out this then poured off. A second and a third water being ap-goat-skin it falls into a second, with more quicksilver, and plied, nothing is left but the coarser particles at the so on from one to another, according to the amount of bottom, and at one edge of them, conspicuous on the fall. black horn, is scen a fringe of gold powder, if gold be When the quicksilver is supposed to be saturated, the present. With a keg of water at his back, and his spoon mill is stopped, the quicksilver is taken out of all the rein his wallet, and a little parched meal, the mine hunter ceptacles, and poured into a linen bag of fine texture, and wanders amongst the barren rocks in search of a treasure, three or four thicknesses. The quicksilver is squeezed which he sells when discovered, and seeks another; the through this bag, and the thickening amalgam is finally claims of labour being practically regulated by natural rammed down with a sort of rolling-pin. aptitudes, just as the North American squatter sells his In a pool of water is a large tile, standing an inch or "betterments,” and moves into another locality, not too two above the surface. On this tile is placed a piece of “crowdy," with a neighbour only five miles off.
red-hot wrought or cast iron, an inch thick and six inches The man who buys the mine, digs the ore, breaks it up square. The amalgam is quickly dropped on the iron, into the size of walnuts, loads it into hide sacks, borne and covered with a clay retort, enclosing the tile and on mules, and sells it to the beneficiador, or benefitter, in standing in the water. A bent neck to the retort dethe valley below, who passes it through his mill. Consi scends into a vessel of water, and the sublimed quicksilver dering the ways and means at his disposal, his mill is leaving the gold pure, is finally collected from the water more of a maryel than Mr. Berdan's machine.
vessel in the metallic state. Occasionally the amalgamHaving settled upon a small stream, with a fall of from ator is not too anxious to throw off the whole of the four to five feet, he builds up two walls to enclose it on quicksilver. It might serve to a customer not too scrueach side, and a back wall to form a small reservoir, with pulous. a spout and plug to let out the water at his pleasure. Over I once asked one of these “ benefitters," who happened the side walls, with considerable labour, he contrives to to be a mine-owner as well, if his mine ever produced lay a flat circular granite stone, some five feet in diameter, visible gold. He replied “God forbid ; if it did, the gold with a hole of fifteen inches through the middle. The would all go into the miner's pockets who dug it. If inmiddle of the stone is hooped round with staves, which visible it comes to mine.” stand up eighteen inches in the form of a tube. The out- Sometimes these mills have warm water put into them side is surrounded with similar staves, so that a water-tight for particular uses. The whole process is precisely what circular trench is formed, with a granite bottom. Through Mr. Berdan accomplishes with more perfect tools. the central hole is passed the straight stem of a tree, shod It appears that with one of Mr. Berdan's machines sixwith an iron pivot, standing in an iron shoe, fast to a teen tons of quartz per day have been crushed, at 13s. 9d. block below. The upper part of the tree is steadied in per ton. But after the gold is taken out there is left a a beam above, supported by two upright posts. Through mass of dirt that needs putting into its proper place. As the middle of the vertical shaft is a horizontal hole, with this dirt is quartz, or silex in an impalpable powder, it is a horizontal shaft projecting on each side. In this hori- precisely the most valuable material used in the manuzontal shaft, at nearly the level of the foot below, are facture of china ware, viz. ground flint. It would thereaffixed in a circle, like the spokes of a wheel, a number of fore pay to grind up quartz that would yield 13s. 9d. wooden spoons, about three feet in length. To the hori- worth of gold to pay the expenses, leaving the ground zontal arms above are tied, by raw hide cordage, a sort of silex for profit, at the value of 21. 4s. per ton, if free large flag paving stones, with their faces bearing on the flat from metallic colouring. granite below. The water being turned on the spoons, An important national industry might thus be prothe paving stones are drawn round by the motion of the moted, and the “dirt” prove more valuable in reality shaft, and grind the quartz.
than the precious metal. It might pay to bring quartzAn improvement on this is to use two vertical rolling rock home as ballast, from abundant new veins yet to be stones, eighteen inches thick and five feet in diameter, found in the nearest ports of Mexico; and if the ground with a circular hole in the centre, through which the silica, by reason of containing metallic oxide, be unfitted horizontal shaft or arm passes, and forces them round. in some cases for china ware, probably it would be found
useful to the farmer as a manure for clayey wheat lands, one result of the American possession of California would be a
or for the process of forming artificial stone. But this is large influx of gold-in their phraseology," that Jonathan would dig a tarnation big hole to the Antipodes, to get at the all based on the supposition that gold maintains its value molten gold, heaviest of metallic bodies."
as & precious metal. If the quantity increases so as mateThe latest discoveries in Australia tell of great riches found rially to lower the price, the circumstances will change. in very deep pits; these are underground beds of torrents over
I am, Sir, yours, faithfully, watercourses now filled up, and which contain the fragments.
W. BRIDGES ADAMS. It will be probably found that these watercourses run parallel to each other at right angles with the ranges of mountains, and that the way of working will be to intercept them by working
MEASURMENT OF TONNAGE, across them, and on striking them, to work up and down along Sir,- In common with all interested in shipping, I read the course; and when they get richest the history will probably with great pleasure the letters which appeared in the be like most Spanish gold mines-_-" the water came in.” And Journal some time ago on the subject of tonnage ; and then the steam engine must go to work to drain. But gold regret the discussion should have been dropped before some digging in gullies is but haphazard work for the labourer, and definite result was arrived at. My object will, however, be not a speculation for the capitalist. The quartz veins are a legiti-attained, if I can induce those gentlemen belonging to the mate operation, which may be conducted without robbery. How to remove the alluvial covering and lay bare the runs of the Society who may be conversant with the question to original mountain torrents, to get at the gold by a company, is communicate their views, and thus lead to some decia difficult problem. Deep beneath the river beds of the Spanish sion upon the best course to be adopted to secure the Peninsula will probably be found gold enough, when they shall desired alteration in the law. I will assume that the be laid bare by effective irrigation of the land.
authorities upon whose report the present mode of meaa