chow miles river
FUH-CHOW, more usually Foo-Cnow, and in German Fu-Tscuiu, a city of China, capital of the province of Fuh-keen, and one of the principal ports open to foreign commerce. In the local dialect it is called Hokchin. It is situated on the river Min, about 35 miles from the sea, in 26° 5' N. lat. and 119° 20' E. long., 140 miles N. of Amoy, and 280 S. of Hang-Chow. The city proper, lying nearly three miles from the north bank of the river, is surrounded by a wall about 30 feet high and 12 feet thick, which makes a circuit of upwards of five miles and is pierced by seven gateways surrounded by tall fantastic watch-towers. The whole district between the city and the river, the island of Nantai, and the southern banks of the Min are occupied by extensive suburbs ; and the river itself bears a large floating population. Communication from bank to bank is afforded by a long stone bridge supported by forty solid stone piers in its northern section and by nine in its southern. The most remarkable establishment of Fuh-Chow is the arsenal situated about three miles down the stream at Pagoda Island, where the sea-going vessels usually anchor. It was founded in 1867, and is conducted under the direction of French engineers according to European methods. In 1870 it employed about 1000 workmen besides fifty European superintendents. The port was opened to European commerce in 1842 ; and in 1853 the firm of Russell and Co. shipped the first cargoes of tea from Fuh-Chow to Europe and America. The European firms now number thirteen ; and the tea trade is second in importance only to that of Shanghai. In 1867 550,239 piculs of tea were exported ; in 1869, 581,003 piculs; in 1872, 642,841 piculs ; in 1875, 723,732 piculs; and in 1876, 617,579. The total trade in foreign vessels in 1876 was imports to the value of .1,531,617 and exports to the value of £3,330,489. The number of vessels that entered in the same year was 275, and of these 211 were British, 27 German, 11 Danish, and 9 American. A large trade is carried on by the native merchants in timber, paper, woollen and cotton goods, oranges, and olives ; but the foreign houses mainly confine themselves to opium and tea. Commercial intercourse with Australia and New Zealand is on the increase. The principal imparts, besides opium, are shirtings, T cloths, lead and tin, medicines, rice, tobacco, and beans and pease. Two steamboat lines afford regular communication with HongKong twice a month. The town is the seat of several important missions, of which the first was founded in 181G. That supported by the American Board had already in 1876 issued 1,300,000 copies of Chinese books and tracts. The population of Fuh-Chow is stated by the Boston Missionary Herald, Feb. 1872, at about 4,000,000; but A. E. Hippeslay in Handelsstatistik der Vertayshafen von China, Vienna, 1874, the Overland China Mail, June 1872, and the Chnrch Missionary Record, Sept. 1872, are all quoted by Bohm and Wagner, Bevolker2tny der Erde, 1875, as giving the number 600,000.