of twenty-five per cent, upon the price of food in St.
Louis. But the total labor employed in cotton manu-
facture is twenty-five per cent, of the cost, and in
England and this country the cost of food represents
about seven -twelfths of the total cost of labor. Thus
St. Louis, through its cheaper food, has an advantage
in the cost of labor in cotton manufacture equal to
fourteen and one-half per cent.
d. The sum of the advantages of St. Louis for cot-
ton manufacture, therefore, growing out of its position
as a trade centre, would be seventeen per cent, over
England and New England.
e. These advantages are increasing steadily from
natural causes, and to them must be added a similar
line of advantages in respect to the raw materials for
machinery, and the cheapness of rents, sites for facto-
f. The advantage of new plants and machinery of
latest and most improved make, when St. Louis
goes into cotton manufacture, must not bo overlooked.
In old establishments usually one-half the capital is
locked up in old, inconvenient buildings and machi-
nery, heating apparatus and the like, which do not
produce the best results, and are costly out of propor-
tion to their value.
St. Louis could distribute more cheaply than any
competing city the products of looms capable of con-
verting into fabrics every bale of staple annually re-
ceived by her merchants. This cotton-goods market
is extending rapidly through new connections with
the far West and with Mexico, and it would be still
more largely enhanced by the facilities of St. Louis
for outstripping competition in the extensive manu-
facture of cotton.
The drawbacks are want of capital, want of ma-
chinery, want of skilled labor, and the opposition, of
course, of the jobbers, who sell the goods manufac-
tured in other places. These deficiencies St. Louis
must remove. With her natural and acquired ad-
vantages she can well afford to do so. In corrobo-
ration of the facts and conclusions adduced above, it
is proper to add the following statistics and figures : l
GROWTH OF THE ST. LOUIS COTTON-TRADE.
No. of Bales. Net per ct.
Gross. Net. of Crop.
1871-72 36,421 16,706 0.56
1873-74 103.741 79,418 1.90
1879-80... 496,570 324,284 5.63
1880-81 398,839 301,353 4.56
1881-82 374,415 259,151 4.78
1 From a paper by Charles W. Knapp on " St. Louis : Past,
Present, and Future," read before the " Round Table Club,"
Oct. 14, 1882.
HISTORY OF SAINT LOUIS.
" This presents a picture of trade aggrandizement
which should at once inspire confidence in the future
and stimulate the merchants of St. Louis to try what
the same energy and enterprise will accomplish in
other fields. To have built up in half a dozen years
from unimportant proportions a trade running yearly
over twenty million dollars proves that it is often only
necessary to dare in order to do. I ask your atten-
tion especially to the fact that the cotton trade of St.
Louis showed signs of healthy growth during the year
just closed, in despite of the great falling off in the
volume of its receipts, as you will see that only in
1879-80 did it receive so large a percentage of the
whole cotton crop. The significance of this fact you
will find still more strikingly illustrated by the follow-
PERCENTAGE OF COTTON CROP RECEIVED AT LEADING
MARKETS, ESTIMATED ON GROSS RECEIPTS.
Per Cent, of Crops of 1881-82. 1880-81. 1879-80.
St. Louis 7.21 6.11 8.43
Memphis 6.24 7.13 7.12
New Orleans 21.91 24.37 26.13
Galveston 8.45 10.83 8.60
Mobile 4.88 5.95 6.23
Savannah 13.64 13.51 12.88
Charleston 9.61 10.19 8.59
Houston 7.80 10.60
Cincinnati 7.46 4.90 5.46
" This presents a comparison of gross receipts, of
which alone could I find the statistics for comparison.
St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Savannah are the only
points which show receipts of a larger percentage of
the crop than previous years, and of these Cincinnati,
as heretofore stated, is only a point in transit and not
a market. St. Louis, therefore, held its own in 1881-
82 better than any other market in the country, and
has every reason to count upon a large increase this
year, if the crop realizes present anticipations."
In the same connection, Mr. Nimmo, in his recent
report on the internal commerce of the United States,
sums up the
"RECEIPTS OF COTTON AT ST. LOUIS, BY RIVER AND BY
RAIL, DURING THE PAST FOURTEEN YEARS.
Cotton Year Ending August 31st. By River. By Rail. Total.
Bules. Jiales. Balet.
]sf,fi 53.506 1,921 55.4L'7
1867 18,712 1,066 19,779
1868 38,804 220 39,024
1S69 16,614 82 16,696
1870 17,034 1,484 18,518
1871 15,582 4,6S8 20,270
1872 30,018 6,403 36,421
^7;; 2rt,577 33,132 59,70'.)
1S74 27,538 76,203 Id::. 7-11
1875 11,750 122,219 133,969
1876 19.020 22.1.1)78 244,598
1877 6,650 211,084 217,734
1S7S 9,998 238,858 248,s;,<;
1879 15,012 320,787 3;i5,7 ( J9
1880 32,279 464,291 496,570
'' The receipts of cotton at St. Louis by river fell from 53,506
bales during the cotton year 1866 to 32,279 bales during the
cotton year 18SO, while the receipts by rail rose from 1921 bales
to 464,291 bales. The total receipts increased from 55427 bales
to 496,570 bales.
"The receipts of the cotton year ended Aug. 31, 1880, were
principally by the rail lines west of the Mississippi River, the
Iron Mountain Road alone bringing about 84 per cent, of the
" The total receipts were as follows :
By Iron Mountain Railroad 417,238
San Francisco Railroad 21,669
Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railroad.. 20,867
railroads east of Mississippi River 4.517
lower Mississippi River boats 32,279
And George H. Morgan, secretary of the St. Louis
Merchants' Exchange, in the report on which Mr.
Nimmo based his conclusions, replied as follows to
some of the interrogatories propounded to him :
" Question 18. Please to state such facts as will indicate the
growth of the cotton traffic of St. Louis, giving both receipts
and shipments, and presenting tables showing the growth of the
cotton traffic over the various routes during the last five or six
years. In this connection please also to give the States and
localities in which the cotton received by the different routes is
"Answer. The business of the cotton year ending Aug. 31,
1880, has more than realized the expectations of the trade. The
gross receipts amounted to 496,570 bales, placing St. Louis at
the head of the interior cotton markets of the country. The
prevalence of yellow fever at Memphis during the fall of 1879
no doubt turned to St. Louis some cotton that otherwise would
not have come to this market, but the amount so diverted could
not have exceeded at the utmost 25,000 bales. The increase
was by the railroads from Arkansas, Texas, and the Indian
Territory, which trade legitimately belongs to St. Louis, and
will doubtless increase with the production in those States.
"The value of the cotton business to our city is equal to at
least 950,000,000 per annum. The value of the net receipts the
past year, at $55 per bale, would be $17,835,620. It is safe to
estimate that the greater portion say three-fourths to seven-
eighths of the proceeds of the cotton sold here is expended in
the purchase of goods and supplies. Add to this the trade that
has naturally followed the channel opened by the cotton trade,
and the amount named will not more than cover the amount of
business that is the natural result of the diversion of cotton to this
market. Of the gross receipts, 172,286 bales were on through
bills of lading to Eastern and foreign markets, leaving 324,284
bales as the amount handled by our factors, against 218,716 bales
the previous year. Of the shipments, 173,644 bales were ex-
ported direct to Europe, 7248. bales to Canada, 110,761 bales to
the Atlantic seaboard cities, 432 bales to San Francisco, and
186,134 bales to interior manufacturing points. Of the receipts,
the larger amount came from Arkansas, and the next from
Texas, as will be seen by tables on following pages. As the
business has increased the facilities for handling the same have
been provided. The St. Louis Cotton Compress Company, the
largest establishment of its kind in the world, has added to its
former buildings, and has also erected a compress on the line of
the Missouri Pacific Railroad. The capacity of the three com-
panies is now as follows :
Storage per Day
Capacity, lor Com-
St. Louis Cotton-Press Company 150,000 4000
Factors' and Brokers' Compress Company.... 25,000 1000
Peper Cotton-Press 25,000 1500
TRADE, COMMERCE, AND MANUFACTURES.
The tables below, derived from the same source,
about complete this exhibit :
STATEMENT allowing iJie sources of supply rf cotton received at
St. Louis for the year ending August 31, 1880.
From Arkansas 239,374
Indian Territory 3,268
Total receipts 496,570
FOREIGN EXPORTS AND DOMESTIC SHIPMENTS IN 1880-81.
To Liverpool, England 188,160
To Havre, France
New York for export.
To seaboard points :
To New Orleans 7,240
New York 34,190
Baltimore, Md 3,816
Interior shipments :
To Massachusetts 44,633
Rhode Island 23,830
New York (State).
RECEIPTS THROUGH COTTON.
St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Rule*.
Missouri, Kansas and Texas Railway 11,853
St. Louis and San Francisco Railway 9.713
By River 1,679
Total bales 172,286 117,083
Gross receipts 496,570 335,799 248,856 217,734
Shipped via St. Louis on
through bills of lading. 172,286 117,083 61,561 69,258
Net amount handled
by St. Louis factors. 324,284 218,716 187,295 148,476
The rate of freights on cotton from interior points
in Texas to St. Louis is about the same as that to
Galveston, and the transportation charges from in-
terior points in Texas to Liverpool via St. Louis do
not materially differ from those via Galveston to
Liverpool, thus making St. Louis a strong competitor
with Galveston for the cotton trade of interior Texas.
On the general subject of the mutual interaction
of local advantages in production, conversion, and
exchange, as affecting St. Louis and its competitors,
C. H. Pope, an expert in transportation matters, ob-
serves, in regard to the territory south of the Ohio
River and of the State boundary of Missouri, that
"at the opening of the era of railway transportation the com-
mercial relations of Chicago with the territory considered were
meagre and spasmodic. The city did not form a market for
any of the products of the Southern soil; it did not possess
organized railway facilities nor lines of non-competitive com-
modities, all of which, added to disadvantageous position,
practically placed that city outside the commercial pale for the
Southern Mississippi River basin.
" Her first traffic with the States of Tennessee, Mississippi,
Alabama, and Louisiana, via the Illinois Central Railroad and
connections, was rapidly improved and followed up, and trade
relations were organized which, on some lines of merchandise,
have re.mained permanent and prosperous. The influence of
Chicago in the South at present is an important one. It is
felt most largely along the line of the New Orleans, St. Louis
and Chicago Railroad, and of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.
In fact, during the era of railway transportation, the line of
New Orleans, St. Louis and Chicago Railroad has formed as
nearly a dividing boundary for the commerce of the interior
cities as it is possible to establish.
" To the west of this road the city of St. Louis, since the
completion of its Southern trunk connections, controls more of
the commerce of the country than either Cincinnati or Louis-
ville, and in this territory Cincinnati, Louisville, and Chicago
each enters as a competitor, the aggregate value of the com-
merce in all commodities controlled by each therein being
almost equal, although the trade seeking each city varies
largely with the commodities moved, i.e. the aggregate trade
of each city in particular commodities being widely different."
He adds that the trade specialties which Chicago
advantageously offers to this territory are grain, hides,
pork, and live-stock, besides a large list of manufac-
tured goods, including clothing, implements and ma-
chinery, iron, etc. Those which St. Louis offers are
furs, flour, grain, and manufactured articles.
J. D. Hayes, of Detroit, one of the experts best
known in connection with trade and transportation,
in a letter to Mr. Nimmo, dated April 7, 1881, re-
marks as follows upon the force of natural advan-
tages in promoting manufactures :
HISTORY OF SAINT LOUIS.
" In reply to your valued favor of 23d ultimo, in regard
to ' the development of manufacturing interests in the chief
cities of the West, viz., Cincinnati, St. Louis, and Chicago,' I
would say the manufacturing interests of those cities, as well
as all other cities, towns, and villages, depend very much upon
natural advantages, aided by circumstances, controlled by
business energy, and capital to bring out and develop those
" Take St. Louis for example. For hundreds or thousands
of years before the present race of people were known the
Mississippi and Missouri Rivers formed their junction near
the place where St. Louis now stands, those rivers being
navigable for so many hundred miles in each direction, drain-
ing a country rich in agricultural lands, as well as very
abundantly supplied with iron, coal, and other minerals,
together with the great variety of different kinds of valuable
timber suitable for manufacturing, all of which could be
brought to that point from the north by the natural flow of
water, thence onward down to the Gulf of Mexico, to reach
open and unobstructed ocean navigation all the year round to
all parts of the world. This vast region of country along those
rivers is capable of sustaining a population of three hundred
millions of people, without having more inhabitants to the
square mile than some parts of Europe. With such a country
and such natural resources to and from, such a central point
would not fail to attract the attention of the dullest mind to
its future prospects long before the steamboats or the railroads
had entered into competition in rates with the currents of the
rivers in their onward course to the ocean. Therefore from the
beginning to the present time, and for all coming time, rail-
roads and steamboats must compete with the currents of those
rivers for the traffic of St. Louis; therefore manufactories at
that point enjoy benefits which are in some respects a protec-
tion as against interior towns or cities having to pay local or
non-competing rates. The St. Louis rates affect the rates upon
all productions far back into the country each side of that
river, as far as to where the local rates into St. Louis and the
through rate from St. Louis added together equal the east-
bound rate by rail from the interior cities and towns.
"The public are educated to call this natural advantage 'dis-
crimination in rates in favor of St. Louis,' which is true so far
as the other places are concerned, but it is a 'discrimination'
made by God himself in the formation of the world, therefore
beyond the power of railroad managers to change. The man-
ufacturer can with some degree of certainty put his money,
energy, and material together at that point, looking to the future
wants of the vast number of people that are now in the West
and the millions upon millions more that will be there, and go
forward with manufacturing enterprises without limit, feeling
secure in the ability to compete with any other part of the
In different words and varying forms, all that has
been said on this subject only serves to enforce and
illustrate what was said long ago by the author of the
" Wealth of Nations," Adam Smith, in that great
work, the foundation, in fact, of all political economy,
and in many respects the wisest and most healthy
treatise upon that complicated science :
"The great commerce of every civilized society is that which
is carried on between the inhabitants of the town and those of
the country. It consists in the exchange of rude for manufac-
tured produce, either immediately or by the intervention of
money, or of some sort of paper which represents money. The
country supplies the town with the means of subsistence and
the materials of manufacture. The town repays this supply by
sending back a part of the manufactured produce to the inhab-
itants of the country. The town, in which there neither is nor
can be any reproduction of substances, may very properly be
said to gain its whole wealth and subsistence from the country.
We must not, however, upon this account imagine that the
gain of the town is the loss of the country. The gains of both
are mutual and reciprocal, and the division of labor is, in this
as in all other cases, advantageous to all the different persons
employed in the various occupations into which it is sub-divided.
The inhabitants of the country purchase from the inhabitants
of the town a greater quantity of manufactured goods with the
produce of a much smaller quantity of labor than they must
have employed had they attempted to prepare them themselves.
The town affords a market for the surplus produce of the coun-
try, or what is over and above the maintenance of the culti-
vators, and it is there that the inhabitants of the country ex-
change it for something else which is in demand among them.
The greater the number and the revenue of the inhabitants of
the town, the more extensive is the market which it affords to
those of the country ; and the more extensive that market, it is
always the more advantageous to a greater number. The corn
which grows within a mile of the town sells there for the same
price with that which comes twenty miles' distance. But the
price of the latter must generally not only pay the expense of
raising it and bringing it to market, but also afford the ordinary
profits of agriculture to the farmer. The proprietors and culti-
vators of the country, therefore, which lies in the neighborhood
of the town gain in the price of what they sell, over and above
the ordinary profits of agriculture, the whole value of the car-
riage of the like produce that is brought from more distant
parts, and they save, besides, the whole value of this carriage
in the price of what they buy."
And this rule applies not only to cotton, but to
every other manufacture in which St. Louis has em-
barked already or will embark in the future, and the
extent and profits of these manufactures of St. Louis
will be in exact proportion to the extent of tributary
country, its need for supplies, and the advantages of
transportation and conversion possessed by St. Louis
over other competing trade centres. The extent of
these natural and acquired facilities constitutes what
may be termed the natural protection of St. Louis, as
distinguished from the artificial protection which may
be derived through the tariff. The percentage of that
natural protection cannot exactly be determined, .since
so many various factors enter into its composition.
We have shown that it is at least seventeen per cent,
in the case of cotton. In the case of flour and pro-
visions for the cotton sections tributary to St. Louis
it is probably fully as great.
COTTON COMPRESS COMPANIES. What the ele-
vators are to the handling of grain the compress com-
panies are to the handling of cotton shipments, and
in " terminal facilities" for the latter trade St. Louis
is without an equal, one of the three establishments
of the kind of which the city boasts being, as we
have indicated, the largest, most complete, and most
convenient of the kind in the world. There are three
TRADE, COMMERCE, AND MANUFACTURES.
compress companies in St. Louis, and a summary of
their compressing facilities makes the following re-
markable exhibit :
St. Louis $1,250,000
Factors' and Brokers'. 150,000
REPORT OB' COTTON COMPRESSED AT ST. LOUIS.
Year ending Receipts. Shipments. Stock.
A "g- 31 - Balee. Bales. Bales.
1882 259,151 265,637 1739
1881 317,195 316,537 8225
1880 358,124 351,818 7467
1879 237,437 237,101 1161
1878 205,861 206,537 825
The Peper Cotton Compress was the first in St. j
Louis, being erected in 1871, at the old building cor-
ner of Twelfth and Market Streets. The press was
of primitive character and capacity, but was used until
1878, when the company removed to its present spa-
cious warehouse, bounded on the river-front by the
Levee, and on its western length by the tracks of the
St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railway. The
warehouse is two hundred and fifty by three hundred
feet, and two stories high. It contains two powerful
hydraulic presses, with a maximum power of five mil-
lion pounds pressure on the bale. The other ap-
pointments of the warehouse are also very complete.
The officers of the company are Jerome Hill (of Hill,
Fontaine & Co.), president ; Christian Peper, vice-
president ; and E. D. Meier, secretary and treasurer.
The St. Louis Compress Company was organized
July 20, 1873, and has since so increased its business
as to employ one million two hundred and fifty thousand
dollars capital. The vast establishment covers a space
of five entire blocks, with a total frontage of seventeen
hundred and forty-eight feet, occupying fifteen acres
of ground, and with its two stories occupying thirty
acres of floor space. The company's warehouses are
arranged in three divisions, two on the Levee and
Park Avenue, and a third (new) on the Missouri
Pacific and San Francisco Railways in the West End.
There are in the first two nine buildings with heavy
brick walls and iron doors. A network of railway
tracks surrounds the platforms, and the arrangements
for loading and unloading direct from cars and boats
are most complete.
Cotton is received and delivered by the company
free of drayage. After a bale has been properly classed
and marked up for shipment it is compressed, and
taken from the delivering platforms by the Cotton
Transportation Company, which company was or-
ganized for the express purpose of transporting cotton
in through car-load lots, without breaking seals, to
the initial lines in East St. Louis, and from thence
to the East and Europe. As the Compress Com-
pany insure all cotton in their hands, this organ-
ization of the Transportation Company in connection
with them enables them to cover the cotton by one
policy from the time they receive it until it is handed
to the railroad companies in East St. Louis. The
Transportation Company was organized and con-
ducted under the able management of Col. J. W.
Paramore, the first president of the Compress Com-
pany. As a greater security from fire, the buildings
are divided into some twelve or fifteen compart-
ments, and throughout the whole the arrangements
for handling the cotton are of the most elaborate
character. The floors are all on an inclined plane
from the receiving platforms to the compresses, and
thence to the delivery platforms, and all of these plat-
forms are well roofed in.
The company has four powerful presses, so com-
bining steam and hydraulic power that they compress
a bale of cotton to a density of nine inches, enabling
twenty-five thousand pounds to be readily loaded on
an ordinary freight-car. In 1879-80 two hundred