Open main menu
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

grouse and a few pinnated grouse (once very plentiful, then nearly exterminated, but now apparently reappearing under strict protection), and such water birds as the mallard duck, wood duck, blue- and green-winged teals, Wilson’s snipe, and greater and lesser yellow legs (snipe). The song birds and insectivorous birds include the cardinal grosbeak, scarlet and summer tanagers, meadow lark, song sparrow, catbird, brown thrasher, wood thrush, house wren, robin, blue bird, goldfinch, red-headed woodpecker, flicker (golden-winged woodpecker), and several species of warblers. The game fish include the bass (small-mouth and large-mouth), brook trout, pike, pickerel, and muskallonge, and there are many other large and small food fishes.

Climate.—The climate of Indiana is unusually equable. The mean annual temperature is about 52° F., ranging from 49° F. in the north to 54° in the south. The mean monthly temperature varies from 25° in the months of December and January to 77°-79° in July and August. Cold winds from the Great Lakes region frequently cause a fall in temperature to an extreme of −25° F. in the north and north central parts of the state. The mean annual rainfall for the entire state is about 43 in., varying from 35 in. in the north to 46 in. in the Ohio Valley.

The soil of the greater part of the state consists of a drift deposit of loose calcareous loam, which extends to a considerable depth, and which is exceedingly fertile. In the Ohio and White Water river valleys a sandstone and limestone formation predominates. The north and north central portions of the state, formerly rather swampy, have become since the clearing of the forests as productive as the south central. The most fertile part of the state is the Wabash valley; the least fertile the sandy region, of small extent, immediately south of Lake Michigan.

Industry and Manufactures.—Agriculture has always been and still is the chief industry of the state of Indiana. According to the census of 1900, 94.1% of the land area was included in farms, and of this 77.2% was improved. The proportion of farms rented comprised 28.6% of the whole number, four-fifths of these being rented on a share basis. The average size of farms, which in 1850 was 136.2 acres, had decreased to 105.3 acres in 1880 and to 97.4 acres in 1900. The value of the farm property increased from $726,781,857 in 1880 to $978,616,471 in 1900. The farms are commonly cultivated on the three-crop rotation system. The proximity of such good markets as Chicago, Cincinnati, St Louis and Louisville, in addition to the local markets, and the unusual opportunities afforded by the railways that traverse every portion of the state, have been important factors in the rapid agricultural advance which has enabled Indiana to keep pace with the newly developed states farther west. Indiana was ninth in the value of its agricultural products in 1889, and retained the same relative rank in 1899, although the value had considerably more than doubled, increasing from $94,759,262 in 1889 to $204,450,196 in 1899. The principal crops in which the state has maintained a high relative rank are Indian corn, wheat and hay; the acreage devoted to each of these increased considerably in the decade 1890-1900. In 1907, according to the Department of Agriculture, the acreage of Indian corn was 4,690,000 acres (7th of the states), and the yield was 168,840,000 bushels (5th of the states); of wheat, 2,362,000 acres (6th of the states) was planted, and the crop was 34,013,000 bushels (7th of the states); and 2,328,000 acres of hay (the 8th largest acreage among the states of the United States) produced 3,143,000 tons (the 8th largest crop). Other important staple crops are oats, rye and potatoes, of which the crops in 1907 were respectively 36,683,000 bushels, 961,000 bushels, and 7,308,000 bushels. There are no well-defined crop belts, the production of the various crops being general throughout the state, except in the case of potatoes, most of which are raised in the sandy regions of the north. The value of the orchard products is large, and is steadily increasing: in the decade 1890-1900 the number of pear trees increased from 204,579 to 868,184, and between 1889 and 1899 the crop increased from 157,707 to 231,713 bushels. Of apple trees, which surpass all other orchard trees in number, there were more than 8,600,000 in 1900. The total value of the state’s orchard products in 1899 was $3,166,338, and the value of small fruits was $1,113,527. The canning industry both for fruits and small vegetables has become one of much importance since 1890.

Stock-raising is an industry of growing importance, the value of the live stock in the state increasing from $71,068,758 in 1880 to $93,361,422 in 1890 and $109,550,761 in 1900. Sheep-raising, however, which is confined largely to the north and east portions of the state, decreased slightly in importance between 1890 and 1900. The value of the dairy products sold in 1899 (census of 1900) was $8,027,370, nearly one-half of which was represented by butter; and the total value of dairy products was $15,739,594.

In the value, extent and producing power of her manufacturing industries Indiana has made remarkable advance since 1880. This increase, which more than kept pace with that of the country as a whole, was due largely to local causes, among which may be mentioned the unusual shipping facilities afforded by the network of railways, the discovery and development of natural gas, and the proximity of coal fields, the gas and the coal together furnishing an ample supply of cheap fuel. The number of manufacturing establishments (under the “factory” system) within the state was 7128 in 1900, 7044 in 1905; their invested capital was $219,321,080 in 1900 and $312,071,234 in 1905, an increase of 42.3%; and the value of their total product was $337,071,630 in 1900 and $393,954,405 in 1905, an increase of 16.9%. The most important manufactured products in 1905 were flour and grist mill products, valued at $36,473,543; in 1900, when they were second in importance to slaughter-house products and packed meats, they were valued at $29,037,843. Next in importance in 1905 was the slaughtering and meat-packing industry, of which the total product was valued at $29,352,593; in 1900 it was valued at $43,862,273. Other important manufactured products were: those of machine shops and foundries, the value of which increased from $17,228,096 in 1900 to $23,108,516 in 1905, or 34.1%; distilled liquors, the value of which had increased from $16,961,058 in 1900 to $20,520,261 in 1905, an increase of 21%; iron and steel, valued at $19,338,481 in 1900 and at $16,920,326 in 1905; carriages and wagons, valued at $12,661,217 in 1900 and at $15,228,337 in 1905; lumber and timber products, valued at $19,979,971 in 1900 and at $14,559,662 in 1905; and glass, valued at $14,757,883 in 1900 and at $14,706,929 in 1905—this being 3.7% of the product value of all manufactures in the state in 1905, and 18.5% of the value of glass produced in the United States in that year. The growth in the preceding decade of the iron and steel industry, the products of which increased in value from $4,742,760 in 1890 to $19,338,481 in 1900 (307.7%), and of the manufacture of glass, the value of which increased from $2,995,409 in 1890 to $14,757,883 in 1900 (392.7%), is directly attributable to the development of natural gas as fuel; the decrease in the value of the products of these same industries in 1900-1905 is partly due to the growing scarcity of the natural gas supply. As compared with the other states of the United States in value of manufactured products, Indiana ranked second in 1900 and in 1905 in carriages and wagons, glass and distilled liquors; was seventh in 1900 and fourth in 1905 in furniture; was fourth in 1900 and seventh in 1905 in wholesale slaughtering and meat-packing; was fifth in 1900 and sixth in 1905 in agricultural implements; and in iron and steel and flour and grist mill products was fifth in 1900 and eighth in 1905. The most important manufacturing centres are Indianapolis, Terre Haute, Evansville, South Bend, Fort Wayne, Anderson, Hammond, Richmond, Muncie, Michigan City and Elwood, each having a gross annual product of more than $6,000,000.

According to the annual report on Mineral Resources of the United States for 1906, Indiana ranked fifth in the Union in the value of natural gas produced, sixth in petroleum, and sixth in coal. Natural gas was discovered in 1886 in the east-central part of the state, and its general application to manufacturing purposes caused an industrial revolution in the immediate region. Pipe lines carried it to various manufacturing centres within the state and to Chicago, Ill., and Dayton, Ohio. During the early years an enormous amount was wasted; this was soon prohibited by law, and a realization that the supply was not unlimited resulted in a better appreciation of its great value. The gas, which is found in the Trenton limestone, had an initial pressure at the point of discovery of 325 ℔; this pressure had decreased in the field centre by January 1896 to 230 ℔, and by January 1901 to 115 ℔, the general average of pressure at the latter date being 80 ℔. The gas field extends over Hancock, Henry, Hamilton, Tipton, Madison, Grant and Delaware counties. The value of the output fell from $7,254,539 in 1900 to $1,750,715 in 1906, when the state’s product was only 4.2% of that of the entire country. On the 1st of January 1909 there were 3223 wells in operation, some of which were 1200 ft. deep. It has been found that “dead” gas wells, if drilled somewhat deeper, generally become active oil wells. The development of the petroleum field, which extends over Adams, Wells, Jay, Blackford and Grant counties, was rapid up to 1904. The annual output increased from 33,375 barrels in 1889 to 11,339,124 barrels in 1904, the latter amount being valued at $12,235,674 and being 12.09% of the value of the product of the entire country. In 1906 there was an output of only 7,673,477 barrels, valued at $6,770,066, being 7.3% of the product value of the entire country. The Indiana coal fields, which cover an area of between 7000 and 7500 sq. m. in the west and south-west, chiefly in Clay, Vigo, Sullivan, Vermilion and Greene counties, yielded in 1902 9,446,424 tons, valued at $10,399,660; in 1907, 13,985,713 tons, valued at $15,114,300; the production more than trebled since 1896, when it was 3,905,779 tons. The deposits consist of workable veins, 50 to 220 ft. in depth, and averaging 80 ft. below the surface. It is a high grade block, or “splint” coal, remarkably free from sulphur and rich in carbon, peculiarly adapted to blast furnace use. The quarries and clay beds of the state are of great value. The quarries of sandstone and limestone are chiefly in the south and south-central portions of the state. The value of the limestone quarried in 1908 was $3,643,261, as compared with $2,553,502 in 1902. The Bedford oolitic limestone quarries in Owen, Monroe, Lawrence, Washington and Crawford counties furnish one of the most valuable and widely used building stones in the United States, the value of the product in 1905 being $2,492,960, of which $2,393,475 was from Lawrence and Monroe counties and $1,550,076 from Lawrence county alone. Beds of brick-clays and potters’ clay are widely distributed throughout the state, the total value of pottery products in 1902 being $5,283,733 and in 1906 $7,158,234. Marls adapted to the manufacture of Portland cement are found along the Ohio river, and in the lake region in the north. In 1905 and 1906 Indiana ranked third among the states in the production of Portland cement, which in 1908 was 6,478,165