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Wisconsin Productions

The productions of Wisconsin may be divided into four classes, the Forest, Animal, Vegetable and Mineral. The comparative amount belonging to each will be shown by the statement given below, which is mainly compiled from the United States census of 1850:


Bales furs and peltry 800
Feet sawed lumber, pine 150,000,000
Thousand shingles 30,000
Cubic feet timber 20,000,000
Number staves 10,000,000
Cords tan bark 2,000
Tons ashes, pot and pearl 25
Pounds maple sugar 610,976
Gallons molasses 9,874
Pounds wax and honey 131,000
Bushels cranberries 5,000


Value of live stock, June, 1850 $4,879,385
Number of horses 30,335
Number of milch cows and cattle 183,434
Number of sheep 124,892
Number of swine 159.276
Pounds of cheese 400,283
Pounds of butter 3,633,750
Pounds of wool 253,963
Pounds of fish 10,000
Dozens of eggs 100,000
Value of animals slaughtered $920,178


Bushels wheat 4,286,131/
Bushels rye 81,253
Bushels corn 1,98",979
Bushels barley 209,602
Bushels oats 3,414,672
Bushels peas and beans 20,657
Bushels potatoes, Irish 1,402,077
Bushels potatoes sweet 879
Pounds flax 100,000
Bushels flaxseed 6,000
Pounds hops 15,930
Pounds tobacco 4,000
Bushels buckwheat 79,876
Bushels grass seed 3,000
Tons hay 275,662
Value of orchard products $8,000
Value of garden products, market $32,142


Pounds lead 40,000.000
Pounds copper
Tons of iron 5,000

The amount of lead shipped from Galena, during the last year was 40,000,000 pounds, nine-tenths of which was raised in Wisconsin. Considerable more than the remaining one-tenth of the amount above stated has been shipped from ports in this State, from which it will be seen that this estimate is small.

To the practical miner, as capitalist or operative, the lead region of the Upper Mississippi offers the most substantial inducements to settlement. The exceeding abundance and richness of the mineral; the comparative ease with which it may be mined; and the high price it commands the moment it is brought to the surface, open to the industrious and prudent operator a highway to wealth.

New leads of the richest promise have been recently discovered in the mineral district, and an increasing emigration to that section of the State, promises to replace the California draft, and to meet the growing demand for the mineral.

The steady advance in the price of lead, which has prevailed for five years past, is indicative of a gradual but decided extension of its uses in the arts. There is no ground for apprehension, that the supply will outrun the demand, or be able to work a reduction of the wages of labor and profits of capital in this industrial occupation, for some years to come.

The copper mines of Lake Superior are of established celebrity throughout the world, and open an inviting field for enterprise. The mining interest in that region is fast losing its character of adventure, and is attracting the attention of the prudent capitalist and the practical miner, as a remunerative branch of business.

The iron mines of Wisconsin have not yet been opened to any extent, but are worthy the attention of the immigrant. There are rich localities of ore near the head waters of the Rock and on the Upper Mississippi and its branches.

The following statement exhibits the shipment of lead from Galena from the year 1841 to 1852 inclusive, and the value of the same at four dollars per hundred weight:

Tears. Number of Pounds. Valve.

1841 29,749,909 $1,189,996
1842 29,424,329 1,176,973
1843 36,878 797 1,475,151
1844 41,036,293 1,641,451
1845 51,144,822 2,045,792
1846 48,007,938 1,920,317
1847 50,999,303 2,039,972
1848 49,783,737 1,991,349
1849 45,985,839 1,839,433
1850 ...41,485,900 1,659,436
1851 34,500,384 1,380,015
1852 40,000,000 1,600,000

Total valuation of exports at the ports of Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee, Port Washington, Sheboygan, Manitowoc and Green Bay, for 1851 2,079,060

Total valuation of lead exported in 1851 1,380,015
Total export* $3,459,075

There are also large quantities of lead shipped at different points along the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers, the precise amount of which no data has been furnished upon which an intelligent estimate can be made.

In reviewing the foregoing statement, it should be recollected that Wisconsin is rapidly increasing, not only in population and wealth, but in the amount and quality of its resources, manufactures and products.

Source: Wisconsin Gazetteer,  By John Warren Hunt. Madison: Beriah Brown, Printer, 1853

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