Texas Almanac, 1859 Page: 69
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THE WHEAT REGION. ti~
Fannin, Tarrant, Parker, Ellis, Navarro, Lamar, Kaufman, Red River, etc. It is
estimated that 5 or 600,000 bushels will bread, the counties first named and furnish
seed for the next crop, leaving a surplus of nearly or quite 1,500,000 bushels. A
portion of this maybe disposed of to the Southern counties within hauling distance,
but as it will not bear transportation more than 150 miles, and many of the counties
within that range have produced. enough, or nearly .so, for home consumption, a
large. surplus will still remain.. A heavy emigration will doubtless be attracted by
the cheapness of breadstuffs and will, furnish a market for some, and more still
will go to fill contracts for subsistence for the government troops on the frontier,
which will require a large amount of flour. At present prices, it will evidently be
to the interest of the government to furnish the posts on the Northern frontier with
Texas flour. Should a surplus still remain, it can be used profitably in fattening
hogs, or can be kept safely in the granaries.
TRANSPORTATION TO MARKET.
The only means of transportation to market, .is hauling in ox-wagons, at an ave-
rage cost of $1 per hundred for each hundred miles. - Of course, wheat and flour
would not bear transportation at these rates to the markets of Houston, Galveston,
or Shreveport, 250 and 300 miles distant, with any chance of competingwith Northern
flour. Transportation by railroad, it is believed, would be about 50 cents per hun-
dred for each hundred miles, or, perhaps, 25 cents per bushel. This would be a saving
in transportation of one hundred per cent or more; or, on one million, five hundred
thousand bushels of wheat, (90,000,000 pounds,) of $45,000 for each hundred
miles transported. The extension of the Houston and Texas Central Railway to
the wheat region, is looked to with great solicitude, as the only means of furnishing
a reliable and certain market for the surplus grain. The experience of the past
year proves that until railroad connection with markets on the Gulf is established,
the culture of wheat in large quantities can not be relied on as profitable, or even
remunerative. If that road should progress in the direction it is now pointing, as
it is sanguinely hoped it will, in another year it is believed it will be within acces-
sible distance of the wheat country.
MANUFACTURE OF FLOUR.
The wheat is manufactured into flour by mills in the country, of which there is
only a moderate supply. There are several excellent steam power flouring-
mills, besides a number of others propelled by water and horse-power. The latter
m ke equally as good flour as the steam millk. The water mills, during dry sea-
sops, are inoperative a large portion of the year, but do an excellent business when
there is a sufficiency of water.. The flouring mills three miles north of Dallas
(steam) have two run of stones now in use, withoan engine of fifty-horse power,
capable of propelling six run of stones. The proprietors claim that they can man-
ufacture, with the two run of. stones, about 8000 pounds of flour per day, in day-
light, equivalent to 40 barrels.- There are other steam mills in the country of per-
haps equal capacity. Millersestimate that a bushel of wheat, 60 pounds, yields on
an average of
Superfineflour, ................................. 35 bs.
Fine flour, ................................... 10 "
Shorts, .................................... 8 "
Bran;....... ... ..,....... ..-.... .... , .. 7 "
The yield of.good wheat, however, is believed to be materially over this estimate.
DISEASES AND CASUALTIES INCIDENT- TO THE, CROP.
RUST is the.dreaded enemy of the wheat crop in Northern Texas, as elsewhere.
This is a parasitical growth, or fungus, that appears in the form of a red dust or
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Texas Almanac, 1859, book, 1859~; (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth123765/m1/70/: accessed October 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.