Imágenes de página
PDF
ePub

ENCROACHMENTS OF THE SEA.

INSTANCES OF OVERFLOW.

SUBJECT which has attracted wide A

discussion among scientific men, is Old observers upon the Atlantic and forced directly upon the attention of visit- bay shores, all agree as to the gradual adors to Cape May; namely, the rapid wear

vance of the ocean upon the uplands. ing away and subsidence of the shores, and Narrow fringes of wood, which formerly the advance of the tide-waters on the land, skirted the marshes, have been killed by Along the entire extent of the New Jersey the salt water; and numerous islandscoast, this phenomenon is observable. At spaces of land found surrounded by salt the mouth of Dennis creek, and for many marsh—which, within the memory of men miles along the Delaware bay shore, the

now living, have been cultivated, and marsh is washed away, according to the others which were in woods, have been reports of local surveyors, on an average entirely lost in the advancing marsh, and of about one rod in two years; and from their location is only to be known by the early maps, this would appear to have been shallowness of the mud which covers them. going on at this rate ever since the first In all the salt marshes on this shore, stumps settlement of the country. Thus an island of trees, of the common species of the which is laid down on a map of 1694 as

country, are found with the roots still fast containing three hundred acres, now shows in the solid ground at the bottom of the at low-water only half an acre, and at high- marsh, and this at depthis far below lowwater is entirely covered.

water mark. Similar submerged forests,

it may be incidentally remarked, are obPROGRESS OF THE ENCROACIMENT.

served on the Massachusetts and other On the west side of Cape May, at a point coasts. where the shore is most boldly outlined,

TIIE RATE OF SUBSIDENCE, the solid gravel bank, from twelve to eighteen feet high, wears away about one The period during which this subsidence foot a year; the foundations of the houses has been in progress, can not be estimated built at the first settlement, as early as with any degree of accuracy. From the 1691, were long since undermined, and the best evidence that can be gathered, it waters of the bay now cover the place would seem to be certain that two feet in where they once stood.

a hundred years is not above the rate at At this cape, the most southerly point of which the shore is now sinking. the New Jersey coast, the encroachment of the tides is equally rapid, a full mile having been washed away since the Revolution. During that period, according to These changes on the New Jersey coast the report of the State Geological Survey, do not appear to be confined to the more a militia artillery company had its prac- southern shore. The same thing has been tising ground here. Their gun was placed observed in the salt marshes on the Rarinear a house which stood just aside of the tan, and at the mouths of the Hackensack present shore line, and their target was set and Passaic rivers. Nor are these changes up three-quarters of a mile east. This last by any means uncommon on other shores. point was at the outer edge of the culti- Mr. Lyell, in his work on the Principles of vated ground, between which and the Geology, says: “Recent observations have water's edge there were sand-hills or disclosed to us the wonderful fact, that not beaches a quarter of a mile in extent. The only the west coast of South America, but whole of this is now gone; and one of the also other large areas, some of them seven hotels has twice been moved inland, on thousand miles in circumference, such as account of the constant advance of the Scandinavia, and certain archipelagoes in tide.

the Pacific, are slowly and insensibly ris

COAST ELEVATION AND DEPRESSION ELSE

WHERE.

1864.]

Encroachments of the Sea.

111

ing; while other regions, such as Green- wash against the head-bank, the material is land, and parts of the Pacific and Indian constantly wearing away, and depositing as Oceans, in which atolls or circular coral a sand-bar or shoal, at some distance from islands abound, are as gradually sinking.” the shore and parallel to it, leaving com Professor Hitchcock, in his “Report on the paratively deep water contiguous to the Geology of Massachusetts," mentions the land. The same configuration is among same phenomena as exhibited there. Mr. the peculiarities of the shores of Norway Lyell, in his "First Visit to America,” and Sweden. “If we suppose this to have speaking of the coast of Georgia, says: “I occurred," says Professor Cook, "during eren suspect that this coast is now sinking the former depression of the land, a series down at a slow and insensible rate, for the of shoals would have formed parallel to sea is encroaching and gaining at many the coast. When a rising of the land took points on the fresh-water marshes.” Bar- place, these shoals would be raised above tram, the botanist, writing in 1792, testi- the surface of the water, and become the fied that along the coasts of Carolina, basis of the present beaches; shrubs and Georgia, and Florida, the tides encroach trees would soon grow on them, to protect upon inarshes which were once high land, their surface and catch the sand which covered with forests.

would drift up from the strand. The

lower ground back would finally be elEVIDENCES OF FORMER SHORE DEPRESSION.

evated above the water, and would be From the deposits of shells of recent covered by vegetation, shrubs, and trees, species which are now frequently found until a subsequent depression of the surabove the present high-tide mark, it is in- face should again carry them below the ferred that at a period not very remote, tide-level, when they would become salt these New Jersey shores were much lower marshes, filling up with sea deposits as the than at present. This inference is corrob- advancing tides would bring them in, and orated by the appearance of the ridges of thus keeping their surface at high-water drift-sand near Cape May, which seem to mark." have been formed long since by gradual recessions of the water, and are now cov

INTERROGATING THE FUTURE. ered by heavy growths of black-oak tim- These phenomena, which an inspection ber. These ridges, however, are now

of this ccast brings to our attention, are wearing away by the advance of the tides; certainly interesting matter of study for and the indications would thus seem to be, scientific men, and we cannot any of us that while the ground was formerly several contemplate them without desiring to infeet lower than it now is, it has since been terrogate the future as to the probable reelevated to a height several feet above its sults of the constant advances which the present altitude, and that it is at this time, sea is making. Will hoar Neptune yet lift and has been for many years past, slowly his trident, and float in his royal barge, but gradually sinking.

where now it is all “ dry land ?" Will he

yet assert his sway over the broad Newark A THEORY UPON THE SUBJECT. meadows, or absorb into his domain the The New Jersey State Geologist, in re

marshes on the shore of Long Island, or marking upon this subject, has broached swallow up the seaside resorts where the the theory, that possibly the peculiarities multitude assembles, pleasure-seeking, of the New Jersey coast are caused by this

“In summer, when the days are long?" gradual elevation and subsequent depression. Along the whole extent, almost, of These are inquiries, which, in view of New Jersey, the main-land is separated what has gone before, may well engage from the ocean by a strip of salt marsh, in our thought; questions of infinitely less some places several miles wide; on the moment have often, before now, set the outer edge of this marsh, next the sea, is schools by the ears, and given tomes of & row of long, narrow, sand islands, or learned disquisition to our libraries. Those beaches. In many places where the waves who would have these queries answered according to existing light and knowledge, yet to many generations they may seem to may profitably peruse the thirtieth chapter be undisturbed by the advancing tides. of Lyell's “ Principles of Geology,” before During many summers, crowds will enjoy mentioned

the attractions, listen to the music, and llowever, Nature accomplishes many of revel in the pleasures offered by these delier great changes very slowly, compared lightful resorts, like so many daughters of with the life of man. Though the New the sea, standing with outstretched hands Jersey beaches, and Long Branch, and and presenting, to one and all, beads still Atlantic City, and Cape May, may be des- dripping with the splendors of the crystal , tined to be covered by the great ocean, depths.

PRIMARY INSTRUCTION.

A

II.

rarely a natural or pleasant exercise at so

early an age. We think the first four or S primary teachers, we are expected five school-years should be devoted mainly

to educate specially the perceptive to perceptive culture, carrying the child powers, since these are the first in the or- on in the development process already so der of development. The child, it is true, fairly commenced. Reading, spelling, and is exercising to a certain extent these pow. number, can be made observing lessons, ers as soon as he opens his wondering eyes and rendered exceedingly interesting to upon the objects about him; but how soon young children. But these alone will not he needs a helping hand! The little one give exercise to all the powers; and as they is not competent to select proper nourish- are frequently taught, they have a tenment for the development of each dawning dency rather to deaden than arouse them. faculty. Suitable aliment must be fur- The child's perception of color, form, size, nished the mind, as well as the body, to place, time, etc., are not commonly brought insure a healthful, harmonious growth. Is into exercise in the ordinary school-course. it not well to ask ourselves, then, if we are Teachers who are intelligently following providing food for the various perceptive out the system called “object teaching," powers in the ordinary routine of primary are paying more attention to this subject; teaching? Are we not starving some of nd we believe competent judges who have them at the expense of others? Are we visited the primary schools in Oswego, making our children quick and accurate N. Y., the Normal School at Trenton, and observers? Are we cultivating language, the Farnum Preparatory School at Bevteaching our little ones to observe and to erly, N. J., will bear witness to the happy express the result of their observations, in results of this perceptive training. If any drawing in written and spoken language, one is desirous of seeing children who are by our ordinary methods? This can be thoroughly arake, who “find books in done while we are accomplishing the very running brooks, sermons in stones, and important end of teaching reading, spell- good in every thing," we advise him to ing, and number. We should not, how

one of these places. ever, be too anxious to see primary pupils Simply for the want of a better name, performing difficult examples in Long Di- we term the improved methods for primary vision. To me it is painful to see a child instruction, Perceptive Exercises. “Obsix, seven, or eight years of age, puzzling ject teaching" seems hardly appropriate, over an example in arithmetic. We think since inaniinate objects can not be taught; the time thus spent might be more pleas- and if the children are the objects speciantly and profitably employed. The pro- fied, the name would apply equally well cess, at best, is mostly mechanical, and to any other methods. The name itself

pay a visit

1864.]

Free and Slave Labor.

113

may have misled some teachers. We find reformation must commence in the primary those in the primary department who are department. llere the foundation is to be in the habit of presenting some object, and laid; and if properly laid, may we not hope giving a lengthened description of its parts, to see the structure more substantially and qualities, etc., expecting the little ones to beautifully completed? We do not wish remember the information given. This to teach our children Natural Philosophy may be very well as an exercise for the or Chemistry in the primary department, memory. It may be an object lesson, but but we do wish to awaken the powers of it is not a perceptive exercise; and as given mind which will naturally lead the child, to young children, we think it out of place. at a proper time, to investigate and appreWe have object teaching" in all our ciate such studies, if he is never permitted higher departments, when under the direc- to pursue them under the guidance of some tion of successful teachers. All the higher learned professor. We shall have more branches are taught objectively when taught self-made men and women, when these properly, and if the mind is prepared for Perceptive Exercises are constituted a speit, such teaching must be attended with cial feature of primary instruction. Our great results. But how often do we hear Perceptive Exercises are progressive, and teachers complain that they are obliged to given for the special purpose of developing do the work that should have been per- the child's ideas of form, color, size, place, formed in the primary training! They are time, tune, number, etc., and nearly all of obliged to resort to various measures for them are made lessons in reading, spelling, the purpose of awakening observation and and language. We should teach our little gaining attention. Every teacher knows ones to imitate and construct. They coinhow difficult a task it is to accomplish this, mence rudimentary drawing at an early when the observing powers have not been age. We make natural readers, good spellproperly exercised at the proper period. ers, ready calculators, fluent talkers, and. What we want, is, to be able to work hand SHARP observers.

How this is accomin hand. We must prepare our children plished, we shall soon endeavor to show. for the good things in store for them. The

FREE AND SLAVE LABOR.

THE Hon. Robert J. Walker, in two re- Maryland has 11,124 square miles arealy, on the finances and resources of the land has a shore line, sea and river, of United States, communicates some exceed- 1,336 miles—— Massachusetts, 764 miles. In ingly interesting facts bearing upon the in- Maryland the rate of mortality is but 1 in fluence of free and slave labor upon the 92; in Massachusetts, 1 in 57. The area prosperity of the country. He shows, by of arable land in Maryland is more than figures drawn from the late census, the dis- double that of Massachusetts, and the soil advantages under which the Southern more fertile. Maryland has inexhaustible States have labored by reason of the exist- mines of coal and iron, and the necessary ence of slavery there.

fluxes; Massachusetts has no coal, no valHe compares, in the first place, Maryland uable mines of iron, nor flux with Massachusetts, selecting Maryland be- ulation of Maryland in 1790 was 319,728; cause that State has greater natural advan- of Massachusetts, 378,717. In 1860 Marytages, and because it has increased in pop- land had 687,031-Massachusetts, 1,231,065. ulation per square mile more rapidly from In seventy years Maryland increased 1790 to 1860 than any other slaveholding 367,300; Massachusetts, 852,340, or more State.

than double as much. In 1790 Maryland The subjoined extract will give a clear had 28 persons to the square mile—in 1860, idea of the results to which Mr. Walker's in 1790 Massachusetts had 48 to the figures tend.

square mile-in 1860, 157. Bear in mind

The pop

61;

that Maryland has double the area of good crime to teach millions of human beings to land that Massachusetts has, and the enor- read or write." mous difference will be seen.

The value of the products of Massachusetts Gray's Elegy IN A Country Churchin 1860 was $287,000,000; of Maryland, YARD.- Mr. Gray had written his Elegy in $66,000,000. In Massachusetts it was the year 1760, and he communicated it to $235 per head; in Maryland, $96. That his friend Horace Walpole, who showed it is to say, the average annual value of the about for some time in manuscript, and it labor of each person in Massachusetts was was received with the applause it so justly greatly more than double that in Maryland. deserved. It found its way into a magaMassachusetts, with a smaller territory, zine, and this was the means of first makhad 1,340 miles of railroad— Maryland but ing him known to the public. We may 380. The value of all property, real and fancy how his fastidious and shrinking personal, was, in Massachusetts, $815,000,- mind would be annoyed by the circum000; in Maryland, $376,000,000. 'Coin- stances which he thus relates in a letter to paring this with the value of products be- Walpole: “Cambridge, February 11, 1751. fore mentioned, the profit on capital was, Yesterday I had the misfortune of receivin Massachusetts 35 per cent.—in Mary- ing a letter from certàin gentlemen (as land, 17 per cent., or less than half; and their bookseller expresses it) who have it is a noticeable fact that in only two slave taken the magazine of magazines into their States, Delaware and Missouri, was the hands. They tell me that an ingenious rate of profit larger than in Maryland, and poem, called 'Reflections in a Country both of these had comparatively fewer Churchyard,' has been communicated to slaves.

them, which they are printing forth with; If now we take intelligence as a stand- that they are informed the excellent author ard, in Massachusetts the value of printed of it is i, by name, and that they beg not matter was in 1860, $2,905,916 ; in Mary- only his indulgence but the honor of his land, $350,155. Massachusetts had 222 correspondence, etc. As I am not at all newspapers and periodicals, of which 112 disposed either to be so indulgent, or to were political, 31 religious, 51 literary, 28 correspond as they desire, I have but one miscellaneous; Maryland had only 57, all bad way left to escape the honor they but one or two political. Massachusetts would inflict upon me, and therefore am had 3,679 public schools ; Maryland, 907. obliged to desire you would make Dodsley Massachusetts had 1,861 adults who could print it immediately from your copy, but neither read nor write; Maryland, 38,426, without my name. The title must be, exclusive of her slaves. Let free working 'Elegy written in a Country Churchyard.'” men ponder these facts, and say under Gray said: “The stanzas have been so what system, whether of free or slave labor, applauded, it is quite a shame to repeat it. I they can earn the largest wages, or their mean not to be modest; but it is a shame for children can receive the best education. those who have said such superlative things

But Mr. Walker goes on to show a more about them, that I cannot repeat them." remarkable fact—that as Maryland is to An early tribute to the merits of the Massachusetts, so is South Carolina to Elegy occurs in an anecdote related by Maryland. He shows that in 1860 the pro- Prof. Robinson, of Edinburgh, then a midduct per head in Massachusetts was $235, shipman on board the “Royal William," in Maryland $96, in South Carolina $56; one of the fleet engaged in the taking of thus in free and educated Massachusetts Quebec. He happened to be on duty in the reward of labor is more than double the boat in which General Wolfe went to that in Maryland, and four times that in visit some of his posts the night before thu South Carolina. “Slavery, then, the cen- battle, which was expected to be decisive sus proves, is hostile to the progress of of the fate of the campaign. The evening wealth and population, to science, literature, was fine; and the scene, considering the and education, to schools, colleges, and uni- work they were engaged in, and the mornversities, to books and libraries, to churches ing to which they were looking forward, and religion, to the press, and therefore to sufficiently impressive. As they rowe: free government; hostile to the poor, keep- along, the general, with much feeling, reing them in want and ignorance; hostile peated nearly the whole of Gray's Ēlegy to labor, reducing it to servitude, and de- (which had appeared not long before, and creasing by two-thirds the value of its pro- was yet but little known) to an officer who ducts; hostile to morals, repudiating among sat with him in the stern of the boat; addslaves the inarital and parental condition, ing, as he concluded, that “ he would preclassifying them by law as chattels, dark- fer being the author of that poem to the ening the immortal soul, and making it a glory of beating the French to-morrow."

« AnteriorContinuar »