Hayward’s United States Gazetteer (1853) page 58

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periodically overflowed. The intermediate country, between the hilly regions on the north and
on the south-east, is gently undulating; and here, within an area of 100 by 50 miles, the soil
is of extraordinary richness. In the neighborhood of the Cumberland River, there is another
tract of about 100 miles in extent, which, though denominated “barrens," has been within a
few years transformed from an extended and unbroken prairie into forests of thrifty and valu-
able timber. The soil throughout the state is generally of excellent quality, producing hemp,
tobacco, wheat,, corn, and numerous other fruits of the earth in great abundance. Among the
native trees, the most common are black walnut, black cherry, mulberry, locust, ash, elm,
papaw, buckeye, whitethorn, cottonwood, and sugar maple. Grapes, of fine quality, also
abound; and all the fruits adapted to the climate are successfully cultivated.

Rivers. — The largest rivers are the Cumberland and the Tennessee, both branches of the
Ohio, which latter flows along the northern boundary for a distance of 637 miles. These
branches are navigable to a very considerable extent. They enter the Ohio at points about
12 miles apart, and within 50 to 60 miles of the junction of the Ohio with the Mississippi.
The other principal streams, besides those which bound the state, are the Kentucky, Licking,
Salt, and Green, Rivers, all of which are extensively navigable.    '

Internal Improvements. — The Louisville and Portland Canal, two and a half miles in length,
is a work of extraordinary magnitude and importance. It was completed in 1831, at great
cost, and after some years of labor; its bed having been excavated out of lime rock, a portion
of it to the depth of 12 feet. By this work, a fall of 22 feet on the Ohio River at Louisville
has been overcome, and vast numbers of steamboats and other craft are constantly passing
through it. The Lexington and Ohio Railroad, extending from Lexington,
via Frankfort, to
Louisville, 95 miles in length, is nearly, if not quite, completed. Another, from the former city
to Covington on the Ohio, opposite Cincinnati, is under contract; and some others are projected.

Minerals. — The most abundant of the mineral products of Kentucky are iron, coal, lime,
and salt. Large quantities of the latter article are annually exported. Limestone, at various
depths, underlays the soil of a large portion of the state.

• Manufactures. — A large amount of capital is invested in the manufacture of hemp, cotton,
wool, iron, tobacco, leather, and other staple commodities. The fabrication of almost every
article of domestic use is also carried on throughout the state.

Indians.—Few or none of the descendants of the aboriginal possessors of the soil now
remain within the limits of the state.

Population. — Sixty years since, the population of Kentucky numbered less than 75,000.
By the last census, it has reached over 1,000,000, more than one fifth of which number
are slaves.

Climate. — The winters in this state rarely continue longer than two or three months, and
are generally mild, but humid. The other seasons are remarkably pleasant, and the tempera-
ture varies less between the extremes of heat and cold than in some of the neighboring states.
The climate is consequently healthy.

Religion. — Of the various Christian denominations, the Baptists, perhaps, are the most
numerous. The Methodists are next in numerical order. Presbyterians, Episcopalians, and
Roman Catholics have each a large number of churches. There are also some societies of
Shakers and Unitarians.

Curiosities. — Among the extraordinary objects of wonder found in this state is the
celebrated “ Mammoth Cave," which has not, probably, an equal in the known world. It is
situated in the county of Edmonson, near the centre of the state, and its subterranean vaults
have been explored to the extent of some eight to ten miles. Its earthy floor is impregnated
so strongly with nitre, that considerable quantities of this article have been extracted there-
from. There are several other remarkable caverns in the state, principally in the south-west
part, between Cumberland and Green Rivers. Many of the lofty, perpendicular precipices
of solid limestone on the banks of Kentucky River, and the frequent chasms formed in the
subjacent calcareous rocks by the rapid action of large streams, may likewise be enumerated
among the natural curiosities of Kentucky.




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