In additon to the remarks of Mr. Bement upon this tree - vol. xvi, page 169 - I desire to add a few notes concerning its history, uses, quality, growth, etc., and in doing so I shall present several extracts from a work upon the Acacia, published by subscription in 1842, by William Withers, of Holt, Norfolk, England.

The Acacia originally derived its name from the botanist who raised it from seed, and introduced it into Europe; this was John Robin, an eminent naturalist, and one of the professors of Le Jardin des Plantes. It was during the reign of Henry IV. - 1600 - that this service was rendered to Europe, and Linnaeus decided that the benefit should be commemorated by calling the tree Robinia pseudo-acacia. When first introduced into France, it was rapidly propagated, for all were eager to have it on their ground. Its rapid growth, the sweet scent of its flowers, and the graceful beauty of its foliage won for it great admiration; but as the tree became more common, this interest died away, fashion changed, and the Acacia was left neglected. The form of the leaves is very graceful; they are conjugate, and composed of leaflets which are soft to the touch, of a lively green color, and are unattractive to insects. This is somewhat remarkable, when the bark and wood of the tree are infested - according to Dr. Harris - by the grubs of six or seven species of insects.

If planted in a situation favorable to its growth, the Acacia assumes an elegant, tufted appearance, admitting the rays of light, which break playfully through its open branches. Not unfrequently the tree is trained against a trellis so situated that its foliage shall produce a pleasing effect of light and shade. The foliage becomes more dense as warm weather advances, whereas that of most other trees suffers and droops when long exposed to the rays of the sun. It bears pruning remarkably well. In writing of the flowers of the Acacia, Mr. Withers says: "It produces numerous clusters of milk-white flowers, the odor of which is diffused to a considerable distance. It sometimes comes into blossom during the first year in which it is planted. The scent is not unlike that of the orange-flower. An arbor of Robinias is sufficient to perfume a large garden. The flowers are, however, very fugacious, lasting only about eight days; but they do not lose their perfume, which may be communicated to pomades, liquors, and syrups.

It is said that in St. Domingo they distil a most excellent liqour from the flower of the Acacia".

In regard to the value of the wood of the Acacia for timber, I will give as extract from V. de Feuilke, a French author, who prepared a very learned treatise on the "Comparative Value of Indigenous and Naturalized Trees." He states that "the Robinia, on account of its general utility, is one of the best trees ever imported from North America into Europe." This author's close observation led him to conclude that the wood, in its green state, possesses, bulk for bulk, more ligneous qualities and less sap than any other tree. A cubic foot, according to his calculations, weighs 53 pounds 11 ounces; and a cubic foot of the dry wood lost in weight only about three pounds. This writer also observes that one of the most important circumstances in the different kinds of wood is the bulk they lose in drying. Dr. Darlington, in bis "Agricultural Botany," writes: "The Locust attains its greatest perfection in Kentucky and Tennessee, where it reaches to the height of ninety feet, with a diameter of four feet.

The timber is one of the roost valuable, whether for strength or durability; in the former quality it ranks but little below the oak, while its resistance to decay, even when exposed to the most destructive influences, exceeds that of the wood of any other of our forest trees." Loudon, in his "Arboretum," publishes the result of experiments at the government dock-yards in Liverpool, to determine the real qualities of the Locust, and it is shown from these investigations that the wood grown in good soil, in a favorable situation, " is heavier, harder, stronger, more rigid, more elastic, and tougher than the best English oak".

M. Neuchatlau, a distinguished French botanist, who published a short treatise on the Acacia, which was translated and issued in England some twenty years ago, in speaking of the rapid growth of this tree says: "In the park of Enghien some Robinias were raised from seed, which in the course of three years and a half had attained the height of 25 feet, and were 9 1/2 inches in girth. It is evident that these trees must have been grown in very favorable soil; at the same time, it should be observed that the Acacia pushes very rapidly at the early stages of its growth, producing branches over six feet and a half in length, at one flowing of the sap." This writer also states that at Rochette, near Melern, he measured some of these trees which had grown nine feet and ten inches in one year. An intelligent cultivator who resided in Pennsylvania about the beginning of the present century, published the following concerning the rapid growth of this tree: " I am not aware that there is any tree which vegetates so rapidly as the Acacia. In the month of April, I cut down a young tree which was nearly seven feet in height, to make two hoops. In the following October, the shoot that had proceeded from the stock was ten feet high, and three and one half inches in circumference.

I once passed a silken thread round one of my Acacias in the month of June, and five days afterwards the thread was buried in the bark".

A Frenchman who resided in this country in 1786, contributed to the Agricultural Society in Paris, a report originally published in the transactions of the Society for that year. He says in his introduction that he does not write as a scientific botanist, but only as a cultivator; and in the report he gives a particular account of all relating to the culture of the Acacia as it came under his observation at that time. I give one or two extracts from this report as being of interest: "The two-thorned Acacia (Robinia pseudo-acacia) is indigenous in the Middle States. I have seen it in the forests of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Connecticut, New York, and Massachusetts. The colonists were first induced to distinguish this tree from a multitude of others, by the order, arrangement, and beauty of its leaves, and the sweet scent of its flowers. They soon, however, ascertained the astonishing durability of its wood, and the rapidity of its growth; and, struck by the advantages thus offered to them, they collected the seeds and formed nurs. cries of the plants, particularly in the County of Lancaster. Shortly after this they began to plant the tree in favorite spots, before their doors and round the grass plots where the American women are accustomed to spread out their linen to whiten by exposure to the dew.

It was soon observed that the shade of the tree, so far from producing aridity of the soil, and destroying the grass beneath it, strengthened the herb, and rendered it sweet and luscious, so that cattle ate it with greater avidity than any grass that grew elsewhere. This induced agriculturists to plant it in meadows, and similar results ensued. Soon after, the Acacia was planted in the vicinity of wells and running brooks, and especially near those places where horses were taken to water, with a view to afford both shade and shelter".

"The Americans make use of the Acacia to secure the banks of their rivers from injury which they are liable to sustain from the combined, effect of ice, rain, wind, thaw, and the power of the sun. These, by causing the banks to yield and crumble down, obstruct navigation, and sometimes carry away a portion of the neighboring fields. To obviate inconvenience, this occasioned the natives to plant Acacias very closely together; and by keeping their heads constantly cut to the height of bushes, they cause the roots to ramify to a great distance, and thus the banks are held firmly together, and effectually preserved from the destructive operations of the waters".

This same author, in his "Memoir of the Acacia," tells an anecdote to illustrate the rapid growth and value of this tree:

A friend of his, the year he was married, planted fourteen acres of the Acacia, intending not to touch them until his first child should be married. He took no other care of them than to have them properly fenced off. At the age of 22 his 000 was desirous to settle in life, and wished the assistance of his father. He sent to a ship-carpenter and sold wood of the Acacia plantation to him for $1,300, for which he purchased an estate for his son in Lancaster County. Three years after he established his daughter in the same way, and in like manner provided a fortune for all his children.

William Cobbett, who resided in this country during the years 1739-1800, produced quite a mania for the Acacia in England about the year 1823. He wrote largely in its favor, describing the timber as "absolutely indestructible by the powers of earth, air, and water," and calling it the "tree of trees." He was at this time engaged in importing tons of seed and trees from this country, calling them Locust trees, since which time this name has been superseded for that of the original one - Acacia.

[A very interesting contribution to the history of one of the most valuable of our trees. As a timber tree its value is not exceeded by that of any other that can be planted. We esteem it a very beautiful and striking tree for landscape effect, though seldom used for that purpose. Its effects in the way of light and shade can be produced by no other. It will grow in almost in any soil. Some of the poorest lands of Long Island are covered with it. It is a mistake, however, to suppose that its leaves are not preyed upon by insects; these, thus far, are confined to localities, but gradually spreading. In September we have seen plantations of thousands of trees completely browned by an insect which eats out the green matter (chlorophyl) between the epidermis. - Ed].