Saturday, March 20, 2010

More from the Statistical Atlas of the United States 1874

Francis A. Walker created a map of the distribution of the people in 1870 with foreign parentage. The map included the United States from the eastern coast to somewhat west of the Mississippi River. This population is concentrated in the northern states and is represented in very small pockets in the southern states. Texas is the only southern state with a sizable population of people of foreign parentage.

The map of the population distribution of “colored” people is the opposite of the distribution of people with foreign parentage. The largest population of black people is in the
Gulf states of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama and the coastal states starting at the north with Virginia and going south into parts of Florida. Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky have large black populations but not a dense as the previously mentioned states. The northern states on the map are lightly and sparsely populated with blacks at this time.

In 1870, Irish and German immigrants are settled in the northern part of the
United States. However, the Irish are heavily concentrated in New York and New England. British Americans (Canadians) are confined to the portion of states along the Canadian-US border. Swedes and Norwegians are settled in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and northern Illinois. English and Welsh immigrants are settled in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, parts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Iowa

Illiteracy appears to be widespread with the lowest illiteracy rates in the northernmost states along the
Great Lakes. The most illiteracy appears in the southern states.

The atlas included a chart with the distribution of church membership. Methodists represent the largest number of members in 1870 followed by Baptists. The
New England states tend to lean toward the Congregationalists whereas the southwestern states and territories at this time leaned toward the Roman Catholic Church.

I am sure that no one is surprised that agriculture represented the largest segment of “gainful occupations.”

The Wealth Distribution map was really enlightening. Wealth was primarily distributed in the north and largely concentrated in the northeast. The southern states, based on this map, have significant pockets of poverty.

I then found the Public Indebtedness map most interesting. I wonder what such a map would look like today.
Louisiana as a state has the most public indebtedness in the United States in 1870 with Maine, New Hampshire and parts of Massachusetts close behind. Missouri seems to have quite a bit of public debt with West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee next. The southern states with exception of those mentioned above fair better than the northern states other than Minnesota and Iowa.

Taxation per Capita seems to be pretty evenly distributed throughout this part of the
United States. There are pockets of higher taxation most of which are in the northern part of the US. I suppose that is not surprising as the wealth seems to be concentrated there.

According to one chart the public debt of the
United States on January 1, 1835 was $37,513. (One website I visited claimed that $35,513 in 1835 translate into $770,390.49 in 2009.)

The large majority of land at this time is under cultivation. So where are specific crops grown in 1870. Wheat is grown in much of the
US with the exception of the southernmost states but Texas while rice is grown exclusively in the coastal regions of the Carolinas and Georgia. Hops are not a big US crop as hops are grown in Wisconsin and New York. Oats are a northern state crop and Cotton is a southern state crop. Like hops, sugar is not a major crop in the US as it is grown in a small area of coastal South Carolina and the southern part of Louisiana. Hay is grown in the northern part of the US. Corn is grown throughout the US except in the coastal areas of the south. Dairy products are the domain of the northeast, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania and parts of Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas and Nebraska.

More people died of consumption in the northern states than the southernmost states,
South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas. Deaths due to malaria had a very different distribution. Florida and the coastal states of Georgia, the Carolinas, Virginia and Maryland were hardest hit. The south in general had more deaths than the north states. The northeast experienced the fewest deaths due to malaria.

The northern states have more cases of deaths from intestinal disease than do the southern states. Typhoid fever is fairly widespread with severe pockets in all parts of the
US. The very southernmost parts of the US appear to be exempt from the disease.

The charts in the atlas included information about deaf mutes, blindness, insanity and idiocy. These charts are harder to read. I may at some point investigate them to see what they tell about people of the
United States in 1870.

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