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party to pay 31. an acre rent, it will leave 21. which, on 150 acres, is 300l. a year profit, or 40 per cent. upon the capital employed."
This, I must not refrain from saying, is, in my opinion, deviating more widely, on one side of the true line of percentage, than ten percent. (including interest on capital) is on the other.
For discussions on this topic, see NORTHERN DEPARTMENT-County of Northumberland; and EASTern DePARTMENT-County of Suffolk.
IN REVIEWING the Reports from the EASTERN DEPART
MENT, I examined those from Essex; so far as its lands and their culture resemble those of Suffolk, and may be properly considered as a continuation of the soil and management of that County.
The principal line which I then drew, as the right boundary between the eastern and the southern Departments, were the ESTUARY of the BLACKWATER RIVER, Continuing the line of separation,-agreeably to the nature of the soils, and the established plan of management,-by MALden, Dunmow, and SAFFRON WALDEN, to the confine of Cambridgeshire.-That portion of the County I named Northeast Essex; and assigned the remainder of it to the SOUTHERN DEPARTMENT*.
SOUTH ESSEX naturally separates into three Divisions, or DISTRICTS; namely, 1. The Forest and Dairy District; which occupies the southwest quarter of the County, bordering on Middlesex. 2. The Vale Lands of Essex; which fill the more central parts. And 3. The Marsh Lands, or "Hundreds of Essex;" which form the southeastern quarter; accompanying the northern bank of the Thames to near the Metropolis; whose more immediate environs form the lower extreme of the Vale of London↑.
Four distinct Reports have been sent in to the Board, from the County of Essex; namely, the "original Report," by Messrs. GRIGG;-the second original (in the 4to form with broad margins, and has not been "reprinted,"-of course not published), by Mr. VANCOUVER ;-the third, by the late Mr. HoWLETT (not printed);—the last, by the Secretary of the Board,-who has incorporated much of Mr. Howlett's MS. (it would seem) and some of Mr. Vancouver's remarks, with his own:-so forming two bulky octavo volumes.
*My motives, for this division of the County, may be seen in the EASTERN DEPARTMENT; article, Northeast Essex.
The northwest corner of Essex assimilates, in soil and management, with Hertfordshire,
OF THE COUNTY OF
OBSERVATIONS ON THE MEANS OF ITS IMPROVEMENT.
BY MESSRS. GRIGGS,
OF HILL HOUSE, NEAR KELVEDON, IN ESSEX.
IN ABSTRACTING the Reports from the Eastern Depart
ment of England, a few extracts were taken from this diminutive sketch-relating to the northeast or the Suffolk side of the County; and I here insert a few passages, which belong to the southern, or the Thames and Middlesex side.
POOR LAWS. The Reporters, speaking of the "Obstacles to Husbandry," say (what has often been intimated by other writers)-P. 24. " Another circumstance which would aid the plough, it is conceived, is liberty to the poor to seek a livelihood where ever work offers, or inclination leads them to seek for it, instead of being subject to be taken up, if found out of their own parish, and carried to what is called to their place of settlement, at the caprice of an overseer, to sit at home, or what is worse, while they? have any credit left, at the alehouse, for want of employ;" labourers will then, it is presumed, naturally be led to reside, where they could render most service to the community, and have a prospect of supporting themselves and families, without being reduced to the mortifying application to an unfeeling parish officer."
PUBLIC DRAINAGE.-P. 25. An object, not perhaps beneath the notice of this most useful institution, is thought to be a general commission of sewers, for the repairs and preservation of the sea walls along the coast, which protect the lands most capable of improvement, from the destructive inundations of the salt water, which is known to leave such fatal effects behind it, that the land is not worth the tillage
tillage for several years after it has been overflown; besides, that the expence and trouble which may have been laid out upon it, are for ever lost. At present, it is common for the owners of land, to manage their own walls according to their own discretion, by which means, the neglect of an individual, may cause not only ruin to himself, but to many of his more careful neighbours, and spread a general distress around him."
ARABLE CROPS.-P. 12. "In the southeast corner" (doubtlessly the Marshland District)" farming seems to be as near, if not nearer perfection, than in any other part of Essex. The land is in general of a deep, rich, tender, loamy quality, and, as in other parts, rather farmed than grazed. The crops of wheat, beans, oats, coleseed or rape, mustard, and in short of any thing that is sown, afford a great return, compared with the common produce of land. The wheat is not unfrequently found to rise to a load an acre; oats (particularly the Poland), to eleven or twelve quarters, and beans and other corn in proportion. Some of this land has been known to produce five or six of the most exhausting crops successively, without a fallow or other particular usage, affording large crops of each. Wheat has been sown three successive years upon the same field, and the crops, upon an average, have amounted to four quarters per acre, the first, from the too great richness of the soil, being the least."
This information is in praise of the soil, of Essex, not of the management of its husbandmen! I insert it, here, as it conveys an interesting fact (I take for granted) in English agriculture; thọ not a singular one.
LIVESTOCK -P. 23. “If Essex fails in any part of husbandry, it is in the kind of stock it sends to market, which seem to be bought in without any sort of preference to this, or that particular breed. In the course of a few miles ride, you will see North, and South Wales, Irish and most other sorts of cattle, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Lincoln, Wilts, &c. sheep, and not uncommonly two or three different kinds in the same field."
DAIRY.-P. 13. "Our largest dairy farms are at, or in the neighbourhood of Epping, so deservedly famous for the richness of its cream and butter. The farmer even here confines himself to no particular sort of cows, but keeps up a stock of promiscuous cattle, bought in as opportunities offer, though indeed the more provident of them say, where the land is particularly good, the Derby and Leicestershires have a preference. These in the summer are fed with the natural and artificial grasses, and in the winter with hay (which is in general of the best quality) and grains. The
best dairies are built on the north side of the farm houses, calculated to be always cool; and are furnished with square troughs, lined with lead, sufficient to hold nine or ten gallons of milk, which is seldom suffered to be more than, five or six inches deep; this, in winter, is skimmed four, and, in summer, two or three times; and the cream, after being kept three or four days, is churned into butter; and the milk, after it will afford no more cream, is given to the hogs, which it fattens to most delicious pork."
The dairy practice of Essex, and that of Buckinghamshire &c., appear, pretty evidently, to have risen from the. same root.
IN THE COUNTY OF
OBSERVATIONS ON THE MEANS OF ITS IMPROVEMENT.
BY CHARLES VANCOUVER.
ON the QUALIFICATIONS of this Reporter, as a writer on
rural affairs, I have had repeated occasions to speak; namely, in the EASTERN DEPARTMENT, Waterlands of Cam bridgeshire, and Northeast Essex; and in the MIDLAND DEPARTMENT, Uplands of Cambridgeshire.--Suffice it,. therefore to say, here, that Mr. Vancouver has evinced, especially in his Survey of Cambridgeshire, extraordinary exertion and perseverance; and that his knowledge of rural concerns, as well as his manner of communicating the information acquired, is superior to many or most of the Board's Reporters.
Mr. Vancouver's PLAN of Survey, in Cambridgeshire, was to examine every parish in the County, and to put down the extent, the soil &c., the state of appropriation, the state of drainage, and a few other circumstances, belong