nancy moselle department meurthe north
MEURTHE-ET-MOSELLE, a department in the northeast of France, formed in 1871 out of those parts of the old departments of Meurthe and Moselle which continued French, and deriving its name from the two principal rivers which water it. Prior to 1790 it belonged to ancient Lorraine, or to one or other of the bishoprics of Toul, Metz, , and Verdun. It lies between 5° 25' and 7° 5' E. long. and 48° 25' and 49° 5' N. lat., and is bounded on the E. by Alsace-Lorraine, on the N. by Belgium and the grand-duchy of Luxemburg, on the W. by the department of Meuse, and on the S. by that of Vosges. The superficial area is 2020 square miles. Geologically Meurthe-etMoselle has five well-marked regions following each other in regular succession from east to north-west. On the frontier of Alsace are the Vosges mountains, of Trias sandstone (gres Vosgiens), with a maximum elevation of 3000 feet. A narrow band of variegated sandstone divides the Vosges from the second region, formed of shelly limestone, which extends as far as the Meurthe on the north and the Moselle on the west. The third region is formed by the variegated marls which cover the rich saline strata of the neighbourhood of Nancy. The Jura limestones of the Lias and Oolite, to the north-west and west of the department, form the last two regions. Here there is a maxinium elevation of 1400 feet, and the plateau of Briey stretches out towards that of the Ardennes. Between the Vosges and the Ardennes the valley of the Moselle runs from south to north, forming the main artery of the department ; the lowest level (570 feet) occurs where the river leaves it. Only a small part of the drainage of Meurthe-et-Moselle flows into the Meuse. The Moselle runs north-west from its entrance into the department as far as Toul ; north-east from Toul to Frouard, where it receives its principal affluent, the Meurthe, and becomes navigable ; north from Frouard to Pagny-sur-Moselle, passing to Pont it Mousson. The principal affluents of the Moselle are the Madon and the Orne on the left, and on the right, besides the Meurthe, the Seille, which in one part of its course forms the boundary of Alsace-Lorraine. The Meurthe, which flows to the north-west from Raon l'Etape to Frouard, passes on to Baccarat, Lundville, St Nicholas, and Nancy, and is swelled on the right by the Vezouse and the Sanon, and on the left by the Mortagne. The principal tributary of the Meuse within the department is the Chiers, which takes its course by Longwy and Longuyon. Climatologically Meurthe-et-Moselle belongs to the Vosgian region. Its mean annual temperature is 52° Fahr., being 2° Fahr. lower than that of Paris (which has the same latitude). The thermometer in severe winters falls to 13° Fahr., while in summer it reaches 100° Fahr. This is to be accounted for by the general elevation of the department, the proximity of the mountains, the arrangement of the valleys (which lie open towards the north), and the distance from the sea.
More than half of the department consists of culturable land, one-fourth of forests, and one-tenth of meadow land. In 1878 there were 54,346 horses, more than 100,000 sheep, 85,000 pigs, 74,000 cattle, 15,000 goats, 21,000 dogs, and 17,000 hives of bees. The crops for the same year amounted to 454,192 quarters of wheat, 37,500 quarters of barley, 35,078 quarters of rye, 570,884 quarters of oats, 9,079,125 bushels of potatoes, and 76,86S tons of beet-root. Hops, tobacco, colza, hemp, and flax also occupy a considerable area. The annual yield of the vineyards (56 square miles in extent) exceeds £900,000; the svines of Toul are the best. The most common fruit trees are the pear, the apple, the walnut, the cherry, and the plum. Of forest trees the oak and the wych-elm are most frequent in the west of the department, the beech and the fir in the Vosges. The French school of forestry has its seat at Nancy. The metallurgic industry is highly developed, and has made very rapid progress within the last few years. Even in 1872 there was a consumption of 350,000 tons of coal, four-fifths of which came from Saarbruck, and the remaining fifth from Belgium. In 1877 the iron ore obtained amounted to 1,000,000 tons, of which two-thirds caine from the beds near Nancy, the remainder from the neighbourhood of Longwy. Iu 1880 the department produced a third of the pig-iron made in France (more than 500,000 tons).
In 18'77 the yield was 43,000 tons. Besides blast-furnaces, forges, and rolling-mills, there are manufactories of files and boring tools, agricultural implements, and furniture. In the production of salt the department holds the first rank in France ; the salt-bearing tracts cover more than 150 square miles, the beds having a mean thickness of 65 feet. The principal salt-working centres (St Nicolas, Varangeville, and Rosieres-anx-Salines) lie between Nancy and Luneville ; the annual value of rock-salt and refined salt produced exceeds £500,000; subsidiary to this production is an important manufacture of soda salts. The other chemical products are prussiate of potash, bone-black, wax-candles, soap, and matches. Stone quarrying and the manufacture of plaster and lime are also important branches of industry. The flint-glass manufactory of Baccarat, which employs nearly 1500 workmen, is well known ; that of plate-glass at Cirey (with 1000 workmen) produces plates of great size. The faience manufactories of Luneville, Toul, and Longwy are important, Mention may also be made of the manufacture of window-glass, watch-glasses, and drinking-glasses. The tobacco manufacture at Nancy employs 1000 workmen ; tanning, glove-making, hat-making in felt and straw, wool-spinning, and the manufacture of army clothing arc also carried on. Nancy is renowned for its embroidery, which is, however, diminishing in importance. It also possesses factories for cotton spinning and cotton stuffs, and for hosiery. The starch manufactories and the breweries, especially that of Tantonville, the largest in France, are highly productive. Nancy also carries on distilleries, grain-mills, paper-mills, manufactories of pasteboard objects, and a large printing establishment. The commerce of the department is effectively served by 300 miles of railway (the principal line being the. from Paris to Strasburg through Nancy), by a number of good roads, and by several navigable rivers and canals. The main waterway is formed by the canal between the Marne and the Rhine, which runs by Toul and Nancy, and traverses the department from west to east. This canal communicates with the Moselle, which is navigable from Fronard downwards, and with the new eastern canal, which reascends the Moselle as far as Epinal, and which is intended to unite the Meuse and the Moselle with the Sa6ne and the Rhone. The population of Meurthe-et-Moselle in 1881 was 419,317 inhabitants. It constitutes the diocese of Nancy, has its court of appeal at Nancy, and forins a part of the district of the 6th army corps (Chfilons-sur-Marne). There are 4 arrondissements (Nancy, Briey, Luneville, and Toul), 29 cantons, and 597 communes. The capital is Nancy, and the other principal towns are Pont a Monsoon, formerly the seat of a university ; Longwy (5064), a fortified place ; and Baccarat (6013), celebrated for its glass-works.