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shot weighing 423 lbs.-namely, the same weight as the round ball of Rod MAN's fifteen-inch gun, which is 425 lbs. The London Engineer, in speaking of the recent experiments at Shoeburyness, calls ARMSTRoNg's two hundred-pounder the most powerful ordnance in the world; but the shot of the big gun at Fortress Monroe is more than twice as large, and the gun is consequently more than twice as powerful. These two guns, the twelve-inch rifled, and the fifteen-inch smooth bore, are the most powerful pieces of ordnance that have ever yet been made. The introduction of iron-plated ships has made it very desirable for sea-coast defence to have enormous cannon, the shots from which would break the iron plates to pieces. But, until Rod MAN's improved mode of casting was invented, it was impossible to make large cannon stron enough to bear the charges required to give effective velocity to balls weighing 400 lbs. These circumstances cause peculiar interest to attach to the trial of the twelve-inch rifled cannon, and we are much pleased at being able to present so good a description of this trial.
The Ontonagon Miner gives the following statement of shipments from the copper mines of that district for the past season:
Net lbs. Tons. lbs.
Total, . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6,920,731 “ 3,460 731
In looking over some statistics of production of the mines of this region, we had the curiosity to compare the increase therein shown with the increase of population. We find that in 1854 the population of the two copper counties of the Upper Peninsula (Houghton and Ontonagon) was 7,985; the production of ingot copper was 1,488 tons, and the value about $495,200. This would give a yield of 373 lbs. to every man, woman and child, making each one a producer to the amount of $75 60. In 1860, after an interval of six years, we find the population amounting to 13,810 souls, producing 6,000 tons ingot copper, worth $2,400,000. This is at the rate of 866 lbs., or $173 20 to each individual. The increase in the six years, as exhibited by the above figures, is, for the population, about 74 per cent. ; for the production and value, 310 per cent.
Mr. Gore, a recent writer on this subject, gives some astonishing statistics respecting this branch of manufacture. The firm of Messrs. Dixon employ 400 workmen, and generally have on hand £8,000 or £10,000 worth of timber. Each week they consume one ton of sulphur and make 43,000,000 matches, or 2,160,000,000 in the year. Reckoning the length of a match at two and a quarter inches, the total length of these would far exceed the circumference of the earth. Another calculation has been made, that the whole length of waxed cotton wicks consumed every year by one London manufacturer in the production of “vestas” would be sufficient to reach from England to America and back again. The magnitude of the figures relating to the English manufacture of matches is, however, insignificant, when we turn to the Austrian production. Two makers alone, M. Poll Ak, at Vienna, and M. FURTH, in Bohemia, produce the amazing number of 44,800,000,000 matches yearly, consuming twenty tons of phosphorus, and giving employment to 600 persons. The low price at which these necessaries of life are produced is equally astonishing. M. Furth sells his cheapest boxes at one penny per dozen, each containing eighty matches. Another maker sells the plain boxes at two pence per 100, and 1,400 matches for one farthing; whilst a third maker sells a case of fifty boxes, each containing 100 lucifers, for four pence. The imports of matches into the United Kingdom are of the value of £60,000 yearly, representing the enormous number of 200,000,000 daily. The daily consumption is 50,000,000 more than the above number, or upwards of eight matches each day for every individual in the kingdom.
The former writes to the Manchester Eraminer in reference to the lectures of the latter:
“Dr. CUMMING having said that he consulted me, I must state what occurred between us at a merry morning dejeuner at Tunbridge Wells, where I met the reverend and eloquent gentleman at the house of a mutual friend. He asked me if } believed in an internal fiery state of the globe, and I replied that, in common with the majority of geologists, I inferred from the evidence of increase of temperature in deep shafts, and also from former and present outbursts of igneous matter, that the existence of a central heat could not, in my opinion, be denied. The words “burning cauldron,' as used by the doctor, are, of course, not mine. If not misreported, Dr. CUMMING has, in the same lecture, completely misunderstood what I said to him on the subject of gold. I directed his attention to two verses in the book of JoB, which indicated that the patriarch was an observant mining geologist. . The words (chap. xxviii. 1) are, ‘Surely there is a vein for the silver;' and in the 6th verse, “It (the earth) hath dust of gold.' Now, although gold, aS well as silver, was originally found in veinstones or disseminated in solid rocks, yet the more precious metal is usually found in superficial debris of pebbles, sand, etc., (the “dust' of Job) whilst silver is almost exclusively obtained from veinstones in mines of argentiferous galena. So far, therefore, Dr. CUMMING is right in announcing that I did say ‘Job
WOL. XLVI.-NO. II. 13
was a good geologist.' But if he added (as one report of his lecture has it) that I was led to anticipate the discovery of gold in Australia by the words of Job, he is entirely in error.”
The whole assets of the Lawrence machine shop were sold by auction, in January, for $9,150, to JAcob PIERCE. According to vote of the stockholders, all the property was sold in one lot. It consisted of outstanding accounts exceeding $18,000; promissory notes amounting, without interest, to over $95,000; 212 shares of stock of Terre Haute, Alton and St. Louis Rail-Road, par $50 per share; 487 shares of stock of Mississippi and Missouri Rail-Road, par $100 per share. Also, 584 acres of land in Aroma, Ill.; 480 acres in Douglas county, Nebraska; 760 in Kankakee, McLean and Linn counties, Ill.; and 80 in Newaygo county, Michigan, and some other matters.
The new life infused into the formerly inert limbs of Italy, has quickened the genius of its people into industrial activity. They are grappling with matters more serious than art or song. A great national exhibition has lately been held at Florence, and the products of Italian industry, though far from being abreast of those of France or England, are, to say the least, highly promising. The great want of that peninsula is coal, which has not been found, to any extent, on its surface. The lack of this must prove a serious drawback to the promotion of steam navigation and manufactures. But water-power does not, probably, exist in greater abundance in any other country of Europe, of the same extent, excepting Switzerland and Norway.
Among recent Italian inventions, the pantelgraph, brought out by CAsselli, is worthy of special notice. This instrument is intended for the transmission of messages immediately from the writer's own hand, conveying a fac-simile of every word and letter, thus bearing the full authenticity of the hand and signature. A banker, for example, at one city, may hereafter draw a check or a draft upon his correspondent in another, which will be immediately honored. The telegraphic wire is made to deliver, at any distance, not only ideas, but forms, whether signatures, designs, portraits, or any other kind of resemblances. The action is so rapid, too, that twelve words per minute can be transmitted. “A small point, writes a correspondent, “something like the hand of a watch, runs semi-circularly, moved by a very simple machine, upon a chemically-prepared paper, tracing almost invisible lines, the aggregate of which soon embodies the words, or the various parts of the design, till the whole stands before us.”
Among other Italian inventions, is a boring machine, now being used in opening a tunnel through the Alps. This instrument is propelled by condensed air. Another is a very ingenious contrivance for assisting railroad trains up heavy grades, securing greater safety and better facilities on short curves than hitherto possessed. In this case, the power is obtained from water. A trial of the apparatus is said to have resulted quite successfully on one of the Sardinian rail-roads.
A NEW SUBSTITUTE FOR THE UPPER LEATHER IN B00TS AND SHOES.
We hear that Mr. SzERELEMY, who is celebrated for the induration of the stone in the house of parliament with a preparation of zoppissa, has discovered the means of rendering a woven fabric completely impervious to wet or damp, and which will not crack or shrink, permits the perspiration to pass off, is exceedingly soft to the foot, and will fit it as a glove fits the hand. This new leather is called panonia. Other improvements, too, are made by Mr. W.M. Southwood, for the protection of the foot, by allowing the points of the rivets to terminate between the leather of the inner sole; the inside leather is reversed, the sucking part of it, therefore, instead of drawing, excludes the damp from the ground, and absorbs the perspiration. We understand a company has been formed for working these valuable discoveries, by which great advantages will be given to the public in both cheapness and comfort.
The Constitutionnel publishes the following results of the imperial decree, dated the 13th of February last, authorizing the importation of foreign cotton cloths free of duty, on condition of their being re-exported after having been printed at French mills. 70,000 pieces of unbleached cotton, of 46 yards each, have, since the publication of the decree, been imported into France, on the conditions specified. Of these, Mulhausen received 45,000 pieces, nearly all from Switzerland, and Rouen, 25,000, from England. These calicoes cost from 5c. to 6c. the metre less than French calicoes, being a difference of 15 per cent, which proves, says the Constitutionnel, that the negotiators of the treaty of commerce with England were correct in fixing the import duty on such articles at 15 er cent. The value of these cotton cloths temporarily admitted into rance is estimated at from 1,500,000f to 1,600,000f, to which the bleaching and printing is to be added, at the rate of from 28 to 20 centimes the metre, being an addition to the value of about 1,300,000f. Thus the facility granted by the decree of the 13th of February has been doubly beneficial to the French manufacturers. It opened markets to them which were closed in consequence of the high price of their calicoes, and enabled them to give employment to their operatives at a moment when trade was dull in consequence of the political events in the United States. This result has been obtained without injury to the French weavers. In fact, the price of French cloths have rather increased than diminished since the decree of the 13th of February. On the other hand, the experience obtained has proved that there is not an equal advantage to be obtained by the temporary admission of muslins, inasmuch as the price charged by the French manufacturers for these articles is nearly the same as the English. “In a word,” concludes the Constitutionnel, “the decree of the 13th of February, which has been in existence little more than six months, has produced most satisfactory results, not only with respect to our foreign relations, but with regard to our home consumption. The inquiry instituted last year by the Superior Council of Trade leaves no doubt on this head. Calicoes cannot be printed at a cheap rate except in large quantities. A new pattern costs a large price, and must be spread over a large quantity of calico in order to be sold
cheap. Thus, for example, suppose a new pattern, including the price of the drawing and of the copper cylinder, costs 10,000f.; if the sale does not exceed 10,000 pieces, there is an expense of 1s the piece. On the contrary, the cost is considerably diminished if there are 20,000 or 40,000 pieces printed. We have likewise to thank the government for the decrees of the 26th of August last, by which woollen cloths, plain or mixed, are admitted for printing, on condition of being re-exported.”
Ross WINANs and Thomas WINANs, of Baltimore, Md., for an improved steering jo for navigable vessels: They claim the combination of a vessel having a spindle-formed bottom, two rudders located below the bottom thereof, at opposite sides of the longitudinal centre, and mechanism to impart opposite movements to the rudders, substantially as described. A. G. Tompkins, of New-York city, for an improved screw propeller: He claims constructing the propeller with a flaring-edged felloe or continuous rim, supported upon separate spokes or arms, that radiate from the driving shaft, all in the manner and for the purpose shown and described. This invention relates to an improvement in what is generally known as the screw propeller, and has for its object the obviating of friction and consequent loss of power attending the working of the ordinary submerged screw propeller. Robert Taylor, of New-York city, for an improvement in canal lock gates: First, a circular face gate for canal locks, the face of which is smooth and attached to side pieces or arms radiating from the journals or axle inserted in the side of the water-way or sides of the lock, when used in combination with a similarly curved breast wall, which forms the lower part of the gate, substantially as described. Second, in combination with such a gate, a wicket leaf, hinged or hung thereto, and operating in the manner and for the purpose described and represented. S. H. Long, U. S. A., of Alton, Illinois, for an improved dredging machine: First, the construction and operation of a scraper for opening channels across bars, &c., substantially such as described. The applicacation and use of such a scraper, with a steamtug or towboat for dragging it across the bar in the direction in which the channel is to be made, substantially as set forth and explained. J. E. MALLox, of New-York city, for an improvement in the preparation of fiber for the manufacture of paper: He claims the process of separating fiber from fiber-yielding plants, as set forth, consisting of the separate and successive steps of eombining, rubbing and washing the plants in cold water; the whole forming one continuous operation, performed while the fiber is fresh and plant undesiccated, as set forth. P. G. GARDINER, of New-York city, for an improvement in cotton resses: He claims the arrangement and combination of the right and eft screws, pivoted nuts, and friction rollers resting on suitable ways, attached to the frame, when operating levers, in the manner and for the purpose substantially as described and set forth. LEoN PIERRE BARRE, of Paris, France, for an improvement in steam boilers: First, the fitting or fixing the tubes of tubular steam boilers by