Whitbeck, R. H., 1871-1939 (Ray Hughes) / The geography and economic development of southeastern Wisconsin
The geography and economic development of southeastern Wisconsin. Chapter I. Introduction, pp. -4 PDF (830.0 KB)
THE GEOGRAPHY AND ECONOMIC DEVELOP- MENT OF SOUTHEASTERN WISCONSIN CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION The five counties* with which this bulletin deals can scarcely be regarded as forming a natural or geographic unit. The three counties, Milwaukee, Racine, and Kenosha, owe much of their industrial eminence to two geographical advantages which they possess in common, namely, their frontage on Lake Michi- gan and their nearness to Chicago. All five of the counties lie in the Chicago industrial district, and this gives them a de- zree of economic unity. (1 A The most influential factor in the industrial development of Wisconsin has been its frontage on Lake Michigan. Along this water front the niost important group of cities in the state has grown up. From these cities the chief lines of transporta- tion have been built into the interior, and so the lake ports hecame the commercial gateways of the state. During the first quarter century of Wisconsin's statehood, the region for 100 miles inland from the lake was very cloealy connected in a business way with these lake shore cities. Nearly all of the main highways and railways led to them; one road (C. & N. W.), in the Rock River Valley, led to Chicago, but the others terminated at Wisconsin ports. For many years, wheat, wool, lead, and other products were hauled by teams scores of miles from the interior to markets on the shore of Lake Michigan; and lumber, shingles, salt, machinery, and general merchandise were hauled back. From the beginning, Waukesha County has been closely linked up with Milwaukee; and Walworth County, for a long time, was directly tributary to Milwaukee, Racine, and Ke- nosha. The only early railroad line traversing any consider- *Milwaukee, Kenosha, Racine, Walworth and Waukesha.
Based on date of publication, this material is presumed to be in the public domain.| For information on re-use, see http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright