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1855, that is in the last half of the decade. From the vote and partial census of 1855, I have the means of estimating the population of that year at about 50,000, leaving 122,022 as the increase of five succeeding years.

During the semi-decade ending with 1855, the deficiency of females was notoriously much greater than since then; so much so, indeed, as to have been felt as a serious social inconvenience.

The aggravated operation of this cause in California in 1850, reduced the annual proportion of births to 0.29 per cent or less than three to every one thousand of the population. The average annual ratio for the United States, is 2.75 per cent. In Minnesota, for the first half of the last census decade, the annual ratio could not have exceeded 2.5 per cent, except in 1850, when the half-breed and Indian women of the country replenished the easy domestic circles of our trading and trapping population in a ratio of 2.77 per cent.

Applying a ratio of 2.5 per cent to the progressive scale of population for the period, as estimated from the current vote, we bave the following as the increment of births :

Population. No. of births. 1851...

7,000 175 1852,

10,000 250

18,000 450 1854.

30,000 750 1855.

50,000 1,250


Total pumber of births for the period.....

2,875 During the five remaining years of the decade, the births were therefore 28,037, which, assuming a cumulative increase in the annual ratio of births, as society matured, and as the disparity between the sexes decreased, were probably distributed upon the ascending series of the scale of population, nearly as follows:

Ratio per cent

Population. 1856...

100,000 2.95 2,956 1857.

150,037 3.50 5,251 1858..

152,000 4.00 6,080 1859...

161,250 4.10 6,611 1860.




No. of

of births,

Total number of births for the period.... 28,037

REMARKABLE FECUNDITY OF OUR POPULATION. This table, whose correctness in the main cannot be disputed, shows a degree of local fecundity, if the numerical ratios of births can be so called, as unparalleled, so far as I know, in the recorded statistics of population, as bas been the rapid concentration of the social elements necessary to produce the result.

This will better appear by comparison with the most prolific States of the Union in 1850. In Minnesota, the ratio of births per cent of population in 1860, was about 4.15 per cent. In Wisconsin, in 1850, it was 3.41; in Iowa, 3.17; in Indiana, 3.27; in Missouri, 3.30; and in polygamous Utah, 3.80, while the average of all the States was 2.75. Minnesota is therefore more than 50 per cent more prolific than the average of the Union, and more than twice as productive as New Hampshire and Vermont.

CAUSE OF THE LARGE PROPORTION OF BIRTHS. The reasons of this extraordinary fecundity are obvious.

It is only the young who emigrate. Our adult population is almost universally in the prime of youthful vigor—at an age when women are most fruitfuland in such circumstances as remove the social obstacles to matrimony arising from pride or poverty, while the isolation of a sparsely settled agricultural community adds intensity to all the natural motives which lead man to seek the companionship of the other sex. I have not yet tabulated the ages of our population, but a partial examination shows that over nine-tenths are under the age of 40 years, and four-fiftbs under the age of 30 years, while over two-fifths, or about 70,000, are at the most fruitful period of life, between 20 and 40.

This large predominance of the youthful classes in our population is, however, defeated of its full effect upon the natal roll from the great numerical disparity of the sexes. The whole number of males is.....

92,588 The whole number of females.


Excess of males

13,939 These masculine supernumeraries belong to the adult class, and are chiefly resident in our larger towns. Subtracting this neutral element from the productive part of our population, and supposing the equated remainder of the sexes married, we will have about 56,000 married persons under forty years of age, or 28,000 families, being 7,818 less the number of families--persons living in separate tenements-enumerated in the census. The remainder are either married persons over forty years of age, or unmarried persons occupying dwellings. We have, then, a little more than one birth annually to every four productive families, and one birth to five of the whole number of families. If our 13,882 bachelors were auspiciously mated, the number of births would be increased in the natural course of events about 3,720 per year, making the total annual increment of population by births, 10,825—or about 6} per cent of the populationwhich without any accessions from abroad would give us a population by 1870 of 317,000.

IMMIGRATION. Let us now compare the native with the immigrant increase : The whole classified population of the State on June 1, 1860. 171,237 The whole number of persons born in the State was..

32,246 The whole number of immigrants being...

138,991 The immigrants being 81.17 per cent of the whole population. But a part of the population, 5,354 in all, belongs to the period prior to the census of 1850.

The whole classified increase of population be-
tween 1850 and 1860 was......

Increase by birth..

30,912 Increase by immigration....

134,971 The native increase being 18.5 per cent of the whole increase of the decade, and the immigrant increase being 81.4 per cent of the whole.

I have already indicated the disastrous year 1857 as an epochal crisis in the history of the movement of population in Minnesota. The influence of the commercial collapse of that year is graphically portrayed in its effects upon the growth of population, and especially in the almost complete suspension, for a time of immigration.

For the three years before 1857, the increase of
population was about....

For the three succeeding years it was.......

21,985 But while nearly the whole growth of population before 1857 was derived from immigration, after that year nearly the whole increase was derived from births.

The accessions from these two sources were distributed as follows in the two periods of the decade before and after the census of 1857:


Increase by births from 1850 to 1857......
Increase by immigration....

Whole increase of the period......

16 134,567



Increase by births from 1857 to 1860......

19,828 Increase by immigration ...

2,157 Whole increase for the period.....

21,985 Observe the complete inversion of proportions :

By birth. By immigration. First period-per cent of whole increase.... 7.62 90.19 Second period - "

92.38 9.81 LOSSES AND GAINS OF POPULATIONS. Of course, the small nuinber above given as the increase by immigration since 1857, which is simply the complement of the born increase, does not, by any means, represent the whole immigration of the period. It represents merely the gain by immigration, after deducting the immense loss of population which we suffered in consequence of the business disasters of 1857, when the horde of camp followers in our army of colonization were swept from our borders like chaff before the whirlwind-the speculators, gamblers, and cognate classes, who overran the country in emulous chase of bubbles of their own blowing:

The census affords collateral evidence of this loss of population, in the empty tenerents, numbering 4,242, which are scattered over the State, and which represent, according to the present ratios of occupancy, a lost population of 19,000 souls. Our losses and gains of population for three years, from 1857 to 1860, may be thus stated : Births.....

19,828 Immigration, about...

22,000 Total accession .....

41,828 Loss by emigration and deaths....

19,842 Total gain by births and immigration...... 21,985

The causes which drove the large number above named from the State had exhausted their force in 1859. Until that year, so entirely had factious schemes of speculation absorbed the attention of our people, to the neglect of agricultural industry, that they did not even produce food enough for home consumption.

The explosion of values in the financial crash of 1857—the bursting of all the fine schemes of town-building and land speculátion of that time, with its terrible recoil of notes and mortgages, left the large majority of our population without any resource. A part of them turned their attention to farming, the rest sought relief from the pressure of the times in emigration.

The effects of this general return to agricultural and other industrial pursuits begun to be witnessed in the fall of 1859, when, for the first time, production exceeded consumption, and a tide of exports began to flow from our borders which has been rapidly widening and deepening ever since, and which has given our State a degree of solid prosperity never attained before. We may reasonably conclude that since 1859, with its well fulfilled promise of better days, there has been no loss of population by emigration from the State; while, on the other hand, the immigration to the State has been constantly increasing.

Estimated Population, Jun. 1, 1862.-Since the spring of 1860, when the census was taken, the influx of emigration has been very considerable. Though I have no data by which to form a judgment except the opinions of steamboat men, and other correspondents at the principal ferries and towns on the Wisconsin and Iowa border-it is certainly below the mark to athirm that 20,000 iminigrants have come into the State during the summers of 1860 and 1861. If, now, we may assume the number of births to have continued in the ratio of 1860, or 4.15 per cent, we shall obtain the following result of the accessions of population from June, 1860, to January 1, 1862: Population, 1860....

172,022 Increase by births..

10,861 Increase by immigration.


Total estimated population, Jan. 1, 1862



It has been shown in a preceding page that Minnesota has increased in the last ten years 3,127 per cent, or six times as fast as the most rapidly growing States of the Union, in the decennial period of their most rapid growth. This of course affords no rule for estimating its future growth, except as indicative of its relative position in the scale of progress. An examination of the decennial movement of population in the North western States, establishes the general fact, that each successive State in the geographical march of population westward has grown more rupidly than its predeceesors.

This fact reeurs with such uniformity in each case as to claim something of the character of a fixed law. The following examples, taking the States in their geographical order from east to west, will show their relative progress for periods of ten years-starting from points of equal population :


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1. Population of Ohio...

1800—45,365 1810—230,760 Population of Michigan..

1833—45,000 1843—262,267

2. Michigan...

1810-4,672 1820— 8,896 1830— 31,639 Indiana.

1800—4,875 1810—24,250 1820—147,178


1820—147,178 1830—343,031 1840—685,866 Illinois...

1830—157,445 1840—467,183 1850—851,470

4. Illinois....

1810—12,282 1820— 55,211 1830—157,445 Wisconsin

1836—11,686 1846—155,277 1856--600,000

5. The population of Wisconsin in 1830 was 3,452; in 1836, 11,686. Iowa in 1836 had 10,531. Those States must therefore have had a population in 1832 of about 5,500 each, or about the same as Minnesota in 1850. They compare then as to progress in population with Minnesota as follows:

Rate of increase Year. Population. Year. Population,

in ten years. Wisconsin

1832 5,500

1842 46,678 748 per cent. Towa.

1832 5,500 1841 62,516 1036 Minnesota..

1850 5,354 1860 172,000 3127 So that Minnesota has grown from three to four times as rapidly as those States in the corresponding period of growth. To state this in another form, Iowa, moving at the same pace as Illinois, starting with a population of 192,000 in 1850, should have bad in 1860 but 547,200, or 185 per cent increase; but she had in fact 675,000, or 251 per cent increase. Wisconsin, starting in 1850 with a population of 305,000, if she had kept even step with Illinois, should have in 1860 but 640,000, or 116 per cent increase. She had really 776,000, or 154 per cent increase. Again, Minnesota, growing at the same rate as Wisconsin and Iowa, should have had but 56,000 inbabitants, or an increase of 944 per cent. But she bad in fact 172,000, or 3217 per cent.

This constant increase in the ratios of frontier growth, rests upon no accidental or temporary conditions. But secondary to these general principles, the causes of the cumulative ratios of frontier growth may be summed up briefly as follows:

1. The rapid increase of the whole population, and its cumulative pressure upon the means of subsistence in the older States, compelling migration to the newer.

2. The rapid increase in the population of the older Western States, makes each of these States, so to speak, a reservoir of emigration to the new States upon their borders. The sources of supply are thus brought Dearer and nearer to the frontier every decade, while the volume of emigration is expanding.

3. Improved means of communication. During the early epochs of VOL. XLVIII.-NO. II.


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