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COMPOSITION OF THESE OLDHAM COUNTY SOILS, DRIED AT 212 F.





No. 2077.


No. 2078.


No. 2079


No 2080.


Organic and volatile matters .... . .


4.612


3016






Alumina and iron and manganese oxides .
Lime carbonate ...


4.449

. 14. ^


8.882

IOC


5.010


3- 2 5
9.008


Ma< r nesia


Ji 7




2 45


T-O


Phosphoric acid


idi


3 U 4
098


.250


1 7 5




not est.




I2 5


/7


Potash


^88




j-jQ


no e .






5* 1


13*


349


Water, expelled at 380 F


U 33
717


.117


35


33


Sand and insoluble silicates


88 665


Kft A nC


563

CQ ,./->


8/1 S?c












Total


no /iSt






nn 7X7








yy /yj




Hygroscopic moisture .


I 9OO


2 87 e


i 850


1 too












Potash in the insoluble silicates


I.28l


I . IOQ


i 428


1. 088


Soda in the insoluble silicates


.^8l


d-ld


663


O22












Character of the soil


Virgin soil.


Subsoil.


Surface soil


Subsoil.













Soils Nos. 2077, 2078, and 2080 are exceptionally rich in
potash ; the other contains an average amount. The subsoils
in both samples are somewhat deficient in phosphoric acid.
These may be classed as good rich soils, but their productive-
ness might be improved and maintained by increasing their
proportion of Jmmus in a rotation of crops, and by the use of
phosphatic fertilizers. It is also probable that plaster of Paris
on the clover crop may be beneficial on soils Nos. 2077 and
2078.

TRIGG COUNTY.

No. 2081 " LIMONITE iron ore. From a bank one mile south
of Centre Furnace. Average sample, by P. N. Moore."
This ore is mostly in dense, hard, irregular hematitic lay-
ers, dark brown and nearly black, with but little of the softer
ochreous ore.
420



CHEMICAL REPORT. 75

COMPOSITION, DRIED AT 212 F.

Iron peroxide 71.708 = 50.195 per cent, of iron.

Alumina and manganese oxide 945

Lime carbonate .... trace.

Magnesia trace.

Phosphoric acid 217 = -95 percent of phosphorus.

Sulphuric acid trace.

Combined water 9.630

Silicious residue 17 280 = 16.960 per cent, of silica.



Total 99.780

This is quite a rich and pure ore, which would doubtless
produce a very tough iron, provided the fuel and flux em-
ployed in the smelting process are free from sulphur and
phosphorus.

PIG IRONS OF CENTRE AND TRIGG FURNACES, TRIGG COUNTY.

No. 2082 " PIG IRON No. i. Foundry iron. From- Centre

Furnace. Collected by P. N. Moore.

A moderately coarse-grained grey iron. Yields readily to
the file. Large fragments of it break readily, but the smaller
ones extend considerably under the hammer.

No. 2083 " PIG IRON No. 2. Foundry iron. Centre Furnace.

Collected by P. N. Moore."

Somewhat finer grained than the preceding, especially on
the outer surfaces, and a little lighter colored. Yields readily
to the file, and extends considerably under the hammer.

No. 2084 " PIG IRON No. 3. Mill iron. Centre Furnace''

&c., &c.

Lighter colored, finer grained, and more brittle than the
preceding.

No. 2085 " PIG IRON. Mill iron. From Trigg Furnace''

&c., &c.

Quite a fine grained grey iron. The small fragments ex-
tend considerable under the hammer. Yields to the file.

No. 2086 " PIG IRON. Silver Grey. From Trigg Furnace,
&c. Collected by P. N. Moore" as were also the above
described.
Hard ; easily splintered on the edges. The small fragments

extend very little, before breaking, under the hammer.

421



76 CHEMICAL REPORT.

COMPOSITION OF THESE CENTRE AND TRIGG FURNACE PIG IRONS.





No. 2082


No. 2083.


No. 2084.


No. 2085.


No. 2086.


Specific gravity


6.872


7.027


7 18?


6 Q3A


6 864














Iron


Q2 . 34Q


Q2.CK'?


Q1 Q4.6




80 C7ft


Graphite .


3.^80


T.. I4.O


2 860


3 Ann








I .O1O


I O6O




i jSo


Aluminum and manganese. . .
Silicon .


not est
-\ . 704.


not est.
2.64.1


not est.

I .012


not est.


not est.
6 677


Slae


660


. IOO


260






Phosphorus


.TiS


318


276


262


221


Sulphur


.067


O7A


104,




121














Total


100.568


IOO. 2^6


IOO. ?78


100 68 i


I OO . 40 C














Total carbon


3.380


A. I CO


1 Q2O


7 /IOO


2.78O















These are all good samples of pig iron. The mill iron
does not contain enough phosphorus to prevent it from pro-
ducing good tough bar iron by judicious puddling.

WARREN COUNTY.

No. 2087 " MINERAL WATER. Sulphur ^vater. From a bored
well two hundred and thirty feet deep. Smith 's Grove, one
hundred miles from Louisville, on the Louisville and Nashville
Railroad. Sent by Junius Woolen, M. D"
The water was brought in tightly corked bottles, but when
it arrived at the laboratory the hydrogen sulphide had all
been decomposed ; it was slightly opalescent, probably from
the consequent precipitation of sulphur. It is slightly alka-
line.

As there was an insufficient quantity of the water, a com-
plete analysis could not be made ; but from the preliminary
examination of it, the following provisional summary of its
composition is given: hydrogen sulphide gas, quantity not
estimated ; carbonic acid gas, not estimated.



422



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.



77



SALINE CONTENTS.





. 1 4.4 5


^ Dissolved by




.OI77


> the carbon-




not est


) ic'acid




.0008






.2856




Potash sulphate


.004.1




Soda sulphate


02 1 "?






.o";2o






not est.




Soda carbonate


.0381






OO22






. 2S47












O.72OO











It is desirable that a more thorough analysis should be made
of this water, which seems to be a good saline sulphur water,
which may be made serviceable in the treatment of various
ailments.

This well is within six miles of the Chalybeate and Cha-
meleon Springs of Edmonson county, and its use is said by
Dr. Wooten to be beneficial in dyspepsia and indigestion, &c.
The spectroscope showed in it traces of lithium and strontium
compounds.



APPENDIX.



TEXAS CRETACEOUS SOILS.

With a view to comparison with our Kentucky soils, some
of the black soils from the cretaceous formation of Texas were
analyzed.

No. 2088 "BLACK SANDY SOIL. From three miles northwest
of Sherman, Grayson county, Texas. Prairie soil, in cultiva-
tion. Collected by Mr. Jesse H. Talbutt."
A dark, mouse-colored sandy soil, containing many frag-
ments of roots, &c. The silicious residue, after digestion in
acids, all passed through the bolting-cloth, except a small

quantity of colorless, transparent, rounded grains of quartz.

423



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.



No. 2089 " SOIL. From 'black waxy' land, half a mile east
of Slierman, farm of H. H. Allen. Prairie land. Collected
by Mr. Jesse H. Talbutt."
Quite an adhesive soil ; in clods ; of a greyish-black color.

The silicious residue all passed through the bolting-cloth.

No. 2090 "SoiL. From 'black waxy' land, H. M. Stones,
two miles west of Playno, Collins county, Texas. Prairie
land, in corn. Collected by Mr. Jesse H. Talbutt."
Not quite so black as the preceding; not in clods; friable.

Effervesces strongly with acids.

COMPOSITION OF THESE TEXAS SOILS, DRIED AT 212 F.





No. 2088.


No. 2089.


No. 2090.


Organic and volatile matters .


4. 077


7.237


7 .OQ7


Alumina and iron and manganese oxides . . . .


2.616


8. I C7


1 1 .447




.880


I 74 C >


I7.O8S




. 1 60


.223


. 231


Phosphoric acid .


. 124


.083


14?




not est .


not est.


not est.


Potash .


.078


.211


.407




.CK2


.osi




Water expelled at 380 F. ,


.700


I . 3QI


1 .660




80 . 60O


80 . 690


6 1 . 840










Total


QQ. 38s


QQ. 784


IOO.OGO










Hygroscopic moisture ....


7 O7t;


o.66t;


o.Sso










Potash in the insoluble silicates


O.67O


0.764


0.443


Soda in the insoluble silicates.


322


. I ?0


. 307












Bl'k sandy.


Bl'k waxy.


Bl'k waxy.











These Texas prairie soils differ from most of our Kentucky
soils in their smaller proportion of alkalies in the silicious res-
idue ; they also present a larger quantity of carbonate of lime,
which is very large in soil No. 2090, and which helps to give
the waxy character to the land. The so-called black sandy
soil is quite deficient in potash, and would not prove durably
productive without the continued use of fertilizers. The rich-
est of them all is No. 2090. The rock substratum to these
424



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX. 79

soils is an indurated chalk, the imperfect analysis of which is
given below.

No. 2091 "INDURATED CHALK ROCK. From near Sherman,

Texas. Collected by Mr. Jesse H. Talbutt."

A whitish, somewhat friable rock, stained irregularly with
light ferruginous. Adheres firmly to the tongue.

COMPOSITION, DRIED AT 212 F.





86^270




trace .




2 980




10.276




not det'd.






Total


QQ. $26







No doubt the action of the large quantity of carbonate of
lime, derived from this soft substratum, in gradually decom-
posing the silicates of the soil, is the cause of the rather small
proportion of the alkalies in the insoluble silicates of the sili-
cious residue.

CHEMICAL EXAMINATION OF THE ASHES OF THE HUNGARIAN GRASS (PANICUM GER.
MANICUM) AND GERMAN MILLET (PANICUM ).

No. 2092 " HUNGARIAN GRASS (black-headed}, taken roots and

all, the leaves being nearly all green, and the seeds in the soft

or doughy state. Plants about three feet high, in the condition

in which they are generally mown for hay."

The field on which they were grown had been in winter rye,

which had been all grazed down by cattle, and the cattle had

been fed with corn fodder on the ground during the winter.

The grass had been sown about the first of June, 1875, an ^ it

was mown August 9th to I3th. Rich blue grass soil. Farm

of R. Peter, Newtown Turnpike.

The quantity taken for analysis; weighing 524 grammes in
the green state, after washing it in the evening and subse-
quent drying through the night; grew on less than a square
foot of surface, and when thoroughly air-dried weighed 182
grammes, or 34.751 per cent, of the green plants.

VOL. I.-CHEM. 28. 4 2 5



8O CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.

No. 2093 "HUNGARIAN GRASS, same variety as the preceding.

From the adjoining farm of Mr. C. M. Reiser ; gathered June

271/1, 1876.

Plants three to three and a half feet high. The heads just
forming.

No. 2094 "GERMAN MILLET. From a field of ten acres, just
outside the city limits of Lexington, on the Newtown Turn-
pike ; property of Mr. J. K. Drake."

This field has been fully seventy-six years in cultivation,
mostly in corn and garden stuffs, with occasional small grain.
Five years ago it was manured with seventy-five cart-loads of
stable manure to the acre, and sowed in clover, which was
allowed to remain until last year, when the ground was put
in hemp, which was rotted on the same surface. The clover
was mowed only one year, and in the other years very few
cattle were grazed on it ; so that most of it rotted on the
ground. The German millet sown this year, i875-'6, gave
seventeen stacks, estimated at two tons each, of hay, equal to
more than three tons to the acre. The grass grew nearly five
feet high, and was coarse and hard in the stalks. The sample,
gathered about the time of mowing it, August 28th, had its
heads heavy with ripe seed ; lower leaves dead.

In the green state it weighed two hundred and four
grammes. After two months air-drying in the laboratory it
weighed ninety-six and a half grammes, of which there were
thirty-seven grammes of seed. The stalks and leaves were
incinerated separately from the seeds.

No. 2095 "THE SEEDS of the above described sample"

For comparison, the analysis of the ash of the buckwheat
and clover plants are appended (the latter in Table II), copied
from a memoir by the writer (in volume II, pages 157, 158
(lower paging), Kentucky Geological Reports, second series).
426



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.



8l



TABLE I. COMPOSITION, CALCULATED IN IQJ PARTS OF THE ASH. CAR-
BONIC ACID EXCLUDED.





No. 2092.


No. 2093.


No. 2094.


No. 2095.


Vol. 2, p. 158,*

second series,
Geological
Reports.


Hungarian
grass.


Hungarian
grass.


German mil-
let, stalks and
leaves.


German mil-
let, seeds.


Buckwheat
plants in flower




0-957
.490

2.090
21.724
.167
9.170
.811
.097
1.914
61.835


-937
1.260

3-378
47-707
'35
10.033
2.008
2.620
254)
31.609)


11.330
3-237

3.624
32.609
474
10.776
.717
.243

37.070


7.711
6.916

1.690
24.265


33-434
10.518

not est.
32.900
1.266
16.824
'-37
431
3-249-




Alumina and iron and manganese ox-


Potash


Soda




16.994
-578
3i9
40-387






Silica, soluble


Silica, insoluble


Total





99.265


99.941


100.080


98.860


IOO.OOO-




Percentage of ash to dried plants . .


8.067


6.461


4.968


2-505


8.762


Percentage of ash to green plants . .


2.802


not est.


2.350




1-577




Percentage of dried to green plants. .


34.751


not est.


47-30




18.000.





* The lower paging.

TABLE II. COMPOSITION OF THE ASH OF THESE PLANTS, SEEDS, &c.
CARBONIC ACID EXCLUDED. CALCULATED IN 100 PARTS OF THE
DRIED PLANTS, &c.













Vol. 2, p 158,*

second series,


Vol. 2, p 157,*

second series,




No. 2092.


No. 2093.


No. 2094.


No. 2095.


Ky. Geolog-
ical Reports.


Ky. Geolog-
ical Reports.




Hungarian


Hungarian


German mil-


German mil-


Buckwheat






grass.


grass.


let, stalks and


let, seeds.


plants in flower


Clover plants.








leaves.










0.076


0.060


0.562


0.193


2.929


2.30




.040


.082


.i6z


J 73


.922


.80


Alumina, iron and
















168


.218


.180








Potash


1.752


3.082


1.619


.608


2.883


2.30


Soda






.023




.in


. 10


Phosphoric acid .


-738


.648


535


.426


1.470


-65


Sulphuric acid . .


.oC 5


.130


037


.015


. 120


.20


Chlorine . . . .


.007


.169


.012


.008


.038


25


Silica, soluble . .
Silica, insoluble .


'55
5.069


.oi6|
2.042]


1.842


I.OI2


| -285


.20







* The lower paging.

It can be seen in these tables that the ash of the Hungarian
grass, as well as that of the German millet, is remarkably sili-
cious, and that a large portion of the silicious matter is in the
insoluble condition.

427



82 CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.

At first, it was supposed that, although care had been taken
to wash the plants thoroughly, much of this silicious matter
might be excluded from the results of the analyses, as sand
accidentally derived from the soil, and adherent as dust to the
plants; but a more thorough examination, with the aid of the
microscope, in the hands of our experienced microscopist, Mr.
Alexander T. Parker, showed that much of it was in the form
of a silicious skeleton of the plant tissue. This fact was made
more manifest by digesting portions of the stem and leaves in
diluted nitric acid, with and without the addition of chlorate
of potash, until the organic matters were mostly decomposed
and removed, when beautiful silicious skeletons were obtained,
which, under the microscope, showed silicious casts or incrust-
ations of the vegetable cells, and curious dumb-bell forms,
proving that the silicious matter, in a dissolved state, had
penetrated through the cell walls, and changing into the in-
soluble form, had incrusted the interior of the cells.

Some beautiful photographs were obtained by Mr. Parker,
with the aid of our skilled photographer, James Mullen, di-
rectly from the enlarged microscopic images formed from the
silicious residue, after digestion in the acid and subsequent
ignition to destroy all the organic matters. The German mil-
let gave fewer of the dumb-bell-like casts than the Hungarian
grass, and the seeds of the former less than any.

DESCRIPTION OF THE MICROSCOPIC PHOTOGRAPHS.

No. i. Silicious material of the stem of Hungarian grass,
which had been digested for several days in nitric acid diluted
with six parts of water, to which chlorate of potash was
added and thorough washing. Magnified about 312 diame-
ters, and photographed by Alex. T. Parker.

No. 2. A similar preparation from the leaf of this plant.
Magnified about 312 diameters, and photographed by Alex.
T. Parker.

These photographs of the purely silicious skeletons of the
tissue of the vegetable leaf and stem are interesting as exhib-
itino- casts of the cells, produced, no doubt, by the infiltration
428



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX. 85

of dissolved silicic acid, as also as showing, in their dumb-bell
shapes, these cells apparently in the act of multiplication by
the process of division.

It is well k: own to chemists that silica, in its ordinary sepa-
rated state in the soil, is almost completely insoluble in water
or the ordinary acids ; but it is also well known that it takes
the unstable soluble form of silicic acid when separated, by
the decomposition of silicates by the action of acids in the
presence of water. Doubtless the acid sap of the plants, com-
ing" in contact with the silicates of the soil, by osmose, caused
this decomposition, and the relative amount of the silicious in-
crustation of the plant cells may give some measure of this
local individual plant action on the soil.

It is well known the Hungarian grass is a very vigorous
growing plant, even on soils comparatively poor, and that it is
a very rough feeder, seeming to have greater power of assim-
ilating insoluble, or difficultly soluble, soil ingredients than
most other cultivated plants. Moreover, as is seen, it is emi-
nently silicious. All these facts seem to show that it in some
manner dissolves or decomposes the silicates of the soil in a
greater degree than is common to most growing vegetables.

It has been known for a length of time that certain veg-
etables, especially of the lichen family, corrode the limestone,
or even the basaltic or granitic rock or glass, on which they
grow, and that, as was ascertained by Braconnet, some of
these plants are known to contain oxalate of lime to the ex-
tent of half their weight. Other plants, as those of the lyco-
podium family, possess the power of dissolving and absorbing
alumina by means of malic acid which they produce ; so that
the compound of this earth, so rarely found in vegetable
tissue, is present in them in large proportion. That the roots
of most plants, while alive or growing, give an acid reaction,
is well known, and easy to verify by placing them in contact
with blue litmus paper or infusion ; but what is the nature or
relative quantity of the acid or acids secreted by the various
species of vegetables, or how they may act on the soil to de-
compose it, and in what manner their action may modify the

429



84 CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.

ash composition of the several plants, has not as yet been
made a subject of systematic investigation.

It is well known that plants of different species, growing in
precisely the same soil, will vary greatly in their mineral or
ash constituents; and the late Baron Liebig was perhaps the
first to declare (see Natural Laws of Husbandry, edited by
John Blyth, M. D., New York, 1863, page 118) that "plants
receive their food principally from the earthy particles with
which the roots are in direct contact, out of .a solution forming
around the roots themselves." This solution, other things
being equal, will vary according to the nature and quantity of
the solvent, which solvent seems to be provided by the plants
themselves, and secreted by the roots, and is evidently of an
acid nature.

It is beginning to be generally understood that different
plants secrete this acid solvent of the soil in different quan-
tities, and probably of different strength and composition.
Some of them, like the lichens which grow on the rock or
lava surface, being able, by their special solvents, to extract
their essential mineral elements from the hard material, which
they thus decompose, while others, not being able to exert
such a powerful decomposing and corroding agency, can only
live on more soluble and available materials, which they may
find in the decomposing remains of these pioneers of the veg-
etable world, or in solution in fertile soils generally.

To these special solvents these peculiar digestive fluids of
the vegetable kingdom may very probably be attributed, in
some measure, the special selective power of plants, by which
different species, growing on the same soil, will appropriate to
themselves not only very different quantities of the mineral
elements, but different kinds of these matters ; so that while
one plant may be characterized by a large proportion of pot-
ash in its ash ingredients, another may always select a very
large amount of lime, and yet another an unusual quantity of
silica, &c., &c., and, practically, when a soil will no longer
profitably produce one crop, it may yet be quite productive of

another.
430



CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX. 85

Some experiments of Dietrich, quoted in Johnson's "How
Crops Feed" (pages 327-8), illustrate very clearly the different
action of different plants in this relation. He caused these to
grow in coarsely powdered sandstone and basalt rock, sever-
ally, watering them with equal quantities of distilled water,
&c. He took also similar quantities of the same rocks and
washed them with the same amount of the water, in order to
exclude the mineral materials dissolved out of the rocks by
the water alone. The special and very different solvent and
decomposing action of the several plants on the rock mate-
rials is clearly shown in the following table, which we quote :

MATTERS DISSOLVED BY ACTION OF ROOTS.





On 9 Ibs of sandstone


On II fts of basalt.


Of 3 lupin plants


0.608 gra
.481
.268
.232

.221
.027
.014


ms.


0.749 gra
.713
.365
327
2 5i
. 196

.132


ms.


Of 3 pea plants .


Of 20 spurry plants




Of 4 vetch plants









The three pea plants extracted from these hard rocky mate-
rials more than forty times as much as the eight rye plants,
and nearly twenty times as much as the eight wheat plants,
under the same external conditions.

From the large proportion of ash ingredients in the Hunga-
rian grass, and especially of silica, and its rank growth, it was
considered probable by the present writer that it exerted an
unusually great "root action" on the soil, by means of an acid
solvent. To verify this supposition, some of this grass was
gathered by him early in July, 1877, just as it was beginning
to form its heads, and submitted to examination. The moist-
ened roots, placed in contact with blue litmus paper, reddened
it decidedly. A handful of the entire plants, which had been
pulled up by the roots, the dirt having been shook off as com-
pletely as possible, was placed with the roots immersed in a
saturated cold solution of carbonate of ammonia, and allowed
to remain for twenty-four hours. The solution, which had

43'



86 CHEMICAL REPORT APPENDIX.

become of a light brown color, was then evaporated to dry-
ness at a heat below 212 F. It left a dark brown residue,
which was re-dissolved in water, filtered and precipitated with
a solution of acetate of lead and a little ammonia. This pre-
cipitate, after washing with cold water, was suspended in water
and decomposed with hydrogen sulphide, &c., and the filtrate,
still somewhat colored, was tested for acids in the usual man-
ner. It was found that oxalic and phosphoric acids were pres-
ent in marked quantities, together with some malic acid, and
probably a small amount of tartaric. Tannic acid was not
observed.

Some of the same grass was gathered July 23d, when the
seeds were beginning to ripen, and submitted to the same
process, with very nearly the same results ; the oxalic and
phosphoric acids being found in largest proportions.

Some buckwheat plants, gathered on September 4th and 6th,
when they were in full flower, were treated in a similar man-
ner. Two handfuls of the plants were placed, successively,
with roots immersed in the same saturated solution of carbon-
ate of ammonia, each being allowed to remain in it twenty-
four hours. The solution, which became also of a brownish
color, treated in the manner above described, gave marked
evidence of the presence of oxalic and phosphoric acids, with
a notable quantity of malic acid, and small proportions of
other vegetable acids ; but no tannic acid could be detected
with iron perchloride. The buckwheat roots did not react so



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