Mitchel, Martin; Osborn, Joseph H. / Geographical and statistical history of the county of Winnebago ... to which is prefixed a general view of the state of Wisconsin, together with a census table from its first settlement to the present time.
Wisconsin, pp. -51 PDF (10.4 MB)
8 WISCONSIN. predominates in the lower timber and prairie lands; loam in the openings, and rolling prairies; and by turns, almost every variety in the upland heavy timber in the northern part of the State. Throughout the State the streams of water are more or less fringed with timber. That a geographic sketch of any section of country should serve the purpose of utility by instructing the understanding of the reader, it is indispensably necessary that it should be so drawn as to give a correct idea of its connexion with, and relations to other locations of which the reader has some previous knowledge; otherwise it would be like an attempt to describe some definite portion of infinite space, an abortive labor. So also of history; whether of a nation, a particular section, or an individual; we must be instructed of the influences of surrounding circum- stances, or we gain no full knowledge of the subject of such history. And as the object and design of this work is "to gather from still living witnesses and preserve for the future annalist, the important record of the romantic and teeming past; to seize, while yet warm and glowing, and inscribe upon the page which shall be sought hereafter, the bright visions of song, and fair images of story, that gild the gloom and lighten the sorrows of the ever fleeing present; to search all history with a careful eye; sound all philosophy with a care- ful hand; question all experience with a fearless tongue, and thence draw lessons to fit us for, and light to guide us -through the shadowy, but unknown future." To enable us, as near as possible to approximate to this grand object, and to place the county of Winnebago in a clear and comprehensive light; it will be necessary that we first invite the attention of the reader to a general, but brief de- scription of the State of Wisconsin; that having viewed the whole, he may be the better prepared to judge of the past, particularly presented for his consideration. The natural wealth of Wisconsin consists in its mines, fisheries, forests, and last; yet far above all, the inexhaustible treasure of fertility in its soil; which in connexion with other advantages has already made it one of the great producing States. The salubrity of its atmosphere and purity of its waters, so congenial to health give it a preference in the mind of the emigrant to locations of the greatest fertility which are not thus favored. All the products common to temperate climates are success-
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