acres terre island population miles basse
GUADELOUPE, an island of the Antilles in the West Indies, belonging to France, is situated 62 miles from Martinique, between 15° 59' 30" and 16° 20' 18" N. lat. and between 61° 31' 23" and 61° 50' 32" W. long. The sailing distance from Brest is 3750 nautical miles. A narrow channel, called La Riviere Salee, or Salt Stream, with a width of from 100 to 400 feet, separates the island into two portions, Guadeloupe proper or Besse Terre and Grande Terre. The former or western portion measures 28 miles from N. to S., and from 12 to 15 miles from E. to W., and its coast-line is estimated at 87 miles. The latter or eastern portion measures 22 miles from N. to S. and 34 from S.E. to N.W., and its coast-line is estimated at 106 miles. Basse Terre has a mountainous surface of volcanic origin, attaining its greatest altitude in La Soufriere, a still active volcano, 4870 feet in height ; while Grande Terre is generally flat, with no elevations higher than 115 feet, and consists entirely of calcareous formations. In the rainy season the streams are subject to floods or "spates," which, according to M. Casponi (Rev. Mar. et Colonia(e, 1871), come on so suddenly that it is hardly safe to travel in the dry beds, lest, to use the local phrase, the gallon descend. Basse Terre, as is natural, is traversed by a considerable number of streams, - the Goyave, tie Lezarde, the Moustic, the Petite Goyave, the Sainte Marie, the Trou an Chien, the Capsteire, &c., - while Grande Terre is almost destitute of springs, and both men and cattle are dependent for their water supply on the ponds and marshes. The mean temperature of the island is 79° Fahr., - the maximum in the shade ranging from 86° to 91°, and the minimum from 68° to 72°. July, August, and September are the hottest months. At Basse Terre, about 180 feet above the sea-level, the thermometer in July shows a mean of 80'8° Palm, in August 82.5°, and in September 82.6°. Like the rest of the West Indian islands, Guadeloupe is subject to terrible storms. That of 1825 almost entirely destroyed the town of Basse Terre, and that of 1865 proved equally disastrous to Grand Bourg. The rainfall is very heavy, on the coast no less than 86 inches per annum.
Alung with its dependencies, the smaller islands of Marie Galante, D6sirade, and Les Shintes, Guadeloupe forms a separate colonial government. The following table gives the area of the several portions : - Of the total area 85,248 acres were under cultivation in 1873 ; 1932 acres were hattes or cattle-farms, 30,640 acres savannahs, and 106,258 acres woods and forests ; while 69,689 acres were fallow. To the sugar-cane, which is the staple of the colony, 48,711 acres were devoted; to coffee, 8659 acres ; to cotton, 1855 acres ; to cocoa, 1146 acres; to rocou or arnatto, 1632 acres ; and to tobacco, 291 acres. Manioc, which forms one of the principal sources of food in the colony, occupied 11,614 acres ; and 11,246 acres were assigned to other articles of direct consumption. In the same year (1873) it was calculated that 43,780 people were employed in the sugar plantations, 5160 in the coffee plantations, 504 in the cotton plantations, and 1088 in the rocou plantations. The whole value of the ground is stated at about £200,000, of the buildings and plants at £1,560,000, and of the live stock at £263,2000. The total produce of sugar of all kinds was 679,300 cwts. ; the syrup and molasses amounted to 568,326 gallons, and the tafia or rum to 298,850 gallons. The produce of coffee, cocoa, and rocon was respectively 13,564, 2102, and 10,663 cwts. The manioc or cassava amounted to 282,412 cwts., and the other food substances, such as yams, bananas, arrow-root, to 118,340 cwts. Tobacco, vanilla, and cloves were also produced in small quantity, as well as 4542 cwts. of campeachy wood. The value of the whole was estimated at £1,134,226, and the net value at £298,437. Administratively the colony is divided into three arrondissements of Basse Terre, Pointe a Pitre, and Marie Galante. The town of Bosse Terre, situated in 15° 59' 30" N. lat. and 66° 24' 31" W. long., with a population of 12,000, is the capital, and the seat of the bishopric, which was founded in 1850; and Pointe is Pitre, situated in 16' 14' 12" N. lat. and 66° 11' 41" W. long., and containing a population of 16,000, is the principal port. A fine military harbour, popularly known as the Gibraltar of the Antilles, is situated in the group of Les Saintes. There is a militia, originally constituted in 1832, partly dissolved in 1851, and re-established in 1870.
During the twenty-five years from 1848 to 1872 the population of the colony remained almost stationary, the mean being only 132,000. Between 1873 and 1875 there was a notable increase, the mean for these years being 111,000. Owing probably to the influence of immigration, the masculine element is on the increase, - there being now 92 men to 100 women instead of 90 as formerly. Married people form only 20 per cent. of the population. According to Dr Charles Walther, with every 1000 European immigrants iu 1864 there were introduced 25 women ; for every 1000 Africans, 496 women; for every 100 Indians, 253; and for every 1000 Chinese, 9. Between 1848 and 1872 there have been 30 births to every 1000 of the population, except during the five years from 1863 to 1867 when the ratio was only 27.6. If the non-reproductive part of the population be excluded, the births range from 41 to 46 per 1000, while in England the corresponding number is 61. It is estimated that probably 25 per cent. of the births are illegitimate. During the years from 1848 to 1852, immediately after the abolition of slavery, there were a great many Marriages, especially among the liberated population - as many indeed as 2000 per annum; but, to use the words of Dr Rey, "cette belle ardeur matriinoniale" soon came to an end. In 1870, 1871, and 1872 there ware only three marriages to 1000 inhabitants.
History. - Guadeloupe was discovered by Columbus in 1493, and received its name in honour of Santa Maria de Guadalupe in Estremadura in Spain. In June 1635 L'Olive and Duplessis took possession of the island in the name of the French Company of the Islands of America, and after Duplessis's death about six months later L'Olive engaged in a war of extermination against the Carib inhabitants. In 1674 Guadeloupe was united to the domains of the crown, and for a long time it remained a dependency of Martinique. Successful resistance was made to attacks by the English in 1666, 1691, and 1703, but on 27th April 1759 the inhabitants capitulated to Admiral Moore and General Bariugton, and the island remained in British possession till 1763. On 12th April 1782 the French under Admiral do Grasse were defeated by Rodney in the neighbourhood of the island. In 1775 Guadeloupe was finally separated from Martinique, but it remained under the common authority of the governor-general of the Windward Islands. The English under Sir John Grey and John Jervis obtained possession on 21st April 1794, but they were expelled on the 2d. of June by Ch•etien and Victor Hugues, 'commissioners of the National Convention, who were powerfully supported by the native population (see "Delivranee de la Guadeloupe en 1794" in Rev. Mar. et Col., 1870). About this time the island contained about 107,226 inhabitants, and the corn. meree was worth £1,274,600. After the peace of Amiens the first consul seat an expedition under General Bichepanse for the purpose of re-establishing slavery in Guadeloupe, but the negroes heroically defended their liberty for months. A new period of British possession was begun by the victory of February 3, 1810, and though by the treaty of March 1813 the island was made over to Sweden, and in the course of 1814 the French general Boyer de Peyreleau gained a temporary footing, in terms of the first peace of Paris, it was not till July 1816 that Britain finally withdrew her forces. Between 1816 and 1825 a special code of laws for Guadeloupe was printed. Municipal institutions were introduced into the island in 1837 (November 20).
See Moreau the Jonnes, Histoire Physique des Antilles ; Boyer de Peyreleau, Les Antilles francaises et partieulierement la Guadeloupe, Paris, 1823, 3 vols ; A. Budan, La Guadeloupe Pittoresqne, Paris, 1863, folio, a flue series of views with descriptive text ; P. S. Dupuy, Eaux thermo-minerales de is Guadeloupe ; "Guadeloupe et dependances," in Rev. Maritime et Coloniale, 1876 (tome 48) ; B. Rey, " Etudes sur la colonic de la Guadeloupe, topographic midicale, elimatologie, demographic," in Rev. Mar. et Col., 1878 ; " La Guadeloupe Is l'exposition " in Journal du COMMeree