The history of Columbia County, Wisconsin, containing an account of its settlement, growth, development and resources; an extensive and minute sketch of its cities, towns and villages--their improvements, industries, manufactories, churches, schools and societies; its war record, biographical sketches, portraits of prominent men and early settlers; the whole preceded by a history of Wisconsin, statistics of the state, and an abstract of its laws and constitution and of the constitution of the United States
Giles, H. H.
Commerce and manufactures, pp. -209 PDF (5.4 MB)
8HISTORY OF WISCONSIN. to in the foregoing. There are several in Manitowoc county; in Marquette county, also. In Washington county, at West Bend, Berlin, and Cedar Creek, there are good water-powers, partly utilized. At Whitewater, in Walworth county, is a good power. In Dane county, there is a water-power at Madison, at the outlet of Lake Mendota; also, a good one at Stoughton, below the first, or Lake Kegonsa; also at Paoli, Bellville, Albany and Brodhead, on the Sugar river. In Grant county there are not less than twenty good powers, most of them well-developed. In Racine county, three powers of fine capacity at Waterford, Rochester and Burlington, all of which'are improved. The Oconto, Peshtigo and Menomonee rivers furnish a large number of splendid water-powers of large capacity. The Upper Wolf river has scores of water-powers on its main stream and numerous branches; but most of the country is still a wilderness, though containing resources which, when developed, will make it rich and prosperous. There are numerous other streams of less consequence than those named, but of great importance to the localities they severally drain, that have had their powers improved, and their waterfalls are sin'ging the songs of commerce. On the rivers emptying into Lake Superior, there are numerous and valuable water-powers. The Montreal river falls one thousand feet in a distance of thirty miles. MANUFACTURES. The mechanical and manufacturing industries of Wisconsin demonstrate that the people do not rely wholly upon agricultural pursuits, or lumbering, for subsistence, but aim to diversify their labors as much as possible, and to give encouragement to the skill and ingenuity of their mechanics and artisans. All our cities, and most of our villages, support establishments that furnish wares and implements in common use among the people. We gather from the census report for I87o a few facts that will give us an adequate idea of what was done in a single year, remembering that the data furnished is six years old, and that great advancement has been made since the statistics were gathered. In 1870, there were eighty-two establishments engaged in making agricultural implements, employing 1,387 hands, and turning out products valued at $2,393,40o. There were one hundred and eighty-eight furniture establishments, employing 1,844 men, and making $1,542,300 worth of goods. For making carriages and wagons there were four hundred and eighty-five establishments, employing 2,184 men, and their product was valued at $2,596,534; for clothing, two hundred and sixty-three establishments, and value of product $2,340,400; sash, doors and blinds, eighty-one shops, and value of product $1,852,370; leather, eighty-five tanneries, employing 577 men, and value of products '$2,013,000; malt liquors, one hundred and seventy-six breweries, 835 men, and their products valued at $1,790,273. At many points the business of manufacturing is carried on more or less extensively; indeed, there is hardly a village in the state where capital is not invested in some kind of mechanical industry or manufacturing enterprise, and making satisfactory returns; but for details in this respect, the reader is referred to the department of local history. The principal commodities only, which Wisconsin contributes to trade and commerce, have been considered. There remains quite a number of minor articles from which the citizens of the state derive some revenue, such as flax and maple sugar, which can not be separately considered in this paper. CONCLUDING REMARKS. Statistics are usually dry reading, but, to one desiring to change his location and seeking information fegarding a new country and its capabilities, they become intensely interesting and of great value. The farmer wishes to know about the lands, their value and the productiveness of the soil ; the mechanic about the workshops, the price of labor, and the demand for such wares 208
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