Lime of a superior quality exists in large quantities near Prescott and Tucson, and is found at other points. Beds of gypsum exist in the San Pedro valley. The salt mountains near Callville and a few miles of the Colorado are among the most remark-able formations in Arizona. The deposits of pure, transparent, and beautifully crystallized salt are very extensive, and no salt is superior for table and general use. Traces of coal have been discovered in this locality. The bullion product of Arizona for 1868 was estimated at $250,000; 1869, $1,000,000; 1870, $800,000. - The climate is mild and generally healthful. In southern Arizona the temperature ranges from 34° to 118° F. The atmosphere is dry, and this region is singularly free from malarious diseases. Snow falls in central Arizona, but, excepting in the higher mountains, disappears in a few hours. The temperature in summer rarely exceeds 90°, and seldom falls below zero in winter. Rain falls mainly in the months of July and August, but there are frequent showers in April and May, as well as in the winter months. The average fall of rain in southern Arizona for 1867 was 2'94 inches; 1866, 4.20; 1858, 8.57; 1857, 0.33. The climate of Arizona is said to be highly beneficial to those afflicted with bronchial or lung diseases.
According to the census of 1870, the total deaths in the territory for that year were 252, of which 116 resulted from general diseases, 71 from local diseases, 60 from accidents and injuries, and 5 from poisons. Of the local dis-eases, 44 were diseases of the respiratory sys-tern and 15 of the digestive system. - The vegetation of southern and western Arizona is scanty and limited to a few genera, such as cactus, aloe, artemisia, palo verde, iron wood, and mesquite, the last a remarkably hard wood. In the middle and N. E. portions of the terri-tory a more varied vegetation prevails. On the hills and mountain sides a rich and abun-dant pasturage is found. Pine and cedar forests abound; while along the course of the streams ash, walnut, cherry, willow, cottonwood, and many other forest trees grow, and large oak trees are seen on the summits of some of the highest mountains in the Sierra Prieta. The aridity of the table lands prevents their cultivation; the soil of the valleys is rich, but in places very arid. Where artificial irrigation is practicable, or where there is sufficient moisture, the crops are good, and the cereals yield abundantly.
The greater portion of the territory S. of the Gila river is a sterile waste; but the river valleys of this section contain many thousand acres of the most fertile bottom lands, which need only irrigation to make them yield abundant harvests. Indian corn, wheat, barley, oats, grapes, figs, oranges, lemons, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, tobacco, the castor bean, etc, thrive here wherever the land can be irrigated; there is also much valuable grass land in this section. The valleys of middle and eastern Arizona contain much arable land. Here all the cereals and roots of the northern Atlantic states are grown, while as a grazing country this region cannot be surpassed. A thick growth of gramma and bunch grass covers the whole country, and gives to the pine woods of this region the aspect of beautiful natural parks. Wheat and barley are usually sown from November to February, and harvested in May; the average yield of wheat is from 20 to 40 bushels per acre, and of barley from 30 to 60. After the wheat and barley are harvested, corn can be planted on the same soil with ample time for it to mature. Much of the land of Arizona is cultivated in this way, and produces two crops each year. The average yield of corn is from 30 to 60 bushels per acre.
In 1870 there were 14,585 acres of improved land in the territory, producing 27,052 bushels of wheat, 32,041 of corn, and 55,077 of barley; and the estimated value of all farm productions, including betterments and additions to stock, was $277,998. Cash value of farms, $161,340; of all live stock, $143,996; of slaughtered animals, $9,400. - There are no railroads in Arizona. The Atlantic and Pacific railroad company have obtained a charter with land grants to build a road along and near the 35th parallel to the Pacific ocean; this road has been completed from St. Louis into the Indian territory. A charter and lands have also been granted to the Texas Pacific railroad company to build a road on or near the 32d parallel, from Marshall in Texas to San Diego, California. There is a good wagon road from San Diego, crossing the Colorado river at Arizona City, thence to Tucson and Santa Fe. The last named town is connected with Prescott by a wagon road via Albuquerque. From Prescott to Los Angeles, Cal., there is a wagon road by way of Wickenburg, Ehrenberg, La Paz, and San Bernardino, and also by way of Hardyville and Mohave. - The government is administered by a governor, secretary, treasurer, and auditor, who are appointed by the president of the United States. The legislature and a delegate to congress are elected by the people.
The judicial power is vested in a supreme court, consisting of three judges appointed by the president, and probate courts.
The supreme court holds one session annually at Tucson. The salary of the governor and of the judges of the supreme court is $2,500. In 1870 the assessed value of real estate was $538,355; personal property, $871,940; total, $1,410,295; true value of real and personal property, $3,440,791; total taxation not national, $31,323. The internal revenue collections for 1871 amounted to $16,889. - According to the census of 1870, there were in the territory 1,923 persons between the ages of 6 and 21 years; the number attending school was 149. There were 2,690 persons over 10 years of age unable to read, and 1,934 over 21 years of age unable to write. The legislature has passed a school law levying a tax for school purposes of 10 cents on each $100 of the taxable property of the territory, and giving authority to the several boards of supervisors of the counties and the boards of trustees of the school districts to levy additional taxes sufficient to maintain a free school in each of the school districts. Four weekly newspapers are published in the territory. - As early as 1526 Don Jose de Vasconcellos crossed the centre of Arizona toward the Great canon, and the country was subsequently visited by other Spanish explorers.
Numerous ruins of Spanish towns and buildings indicate that here was the seat of an early Spanish colonization, and that the land was highly cultivated. In the N. W. part of the territory, on the Colorado plateau, is a group of pueblos in ruins, containing estufas, reservoirs, terraces, aqueducts, and walls of at least four stories high. The most extensive ruins are found in the Gila valley, which is studded throughout with deserted pueblos and remains of irrigating canals, acequias, pottery, etc. The river banks are covered with ruins of stone houses and regular fortifications, which do not appear to have been inhabited for centuries. The walls are of solid masonry, rectangular in form, and usually two stories high. It is estimated that at least 100,000 people must have occupied the Gila valley at one time. - The territory of Arizona was separated from that of New Mexico and organized by act of congress passed Feb. 24, 1863. The portion N. of the Gila river was obtained by the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Feb. 2, 1848, while that S. of the Gila was acquired under the treaty made by James Gadsden at Mexico, Dec. 30, 1853. The act of Feb. 24, 1863, creating the territory, describes it as comprising all the United States lands W. of lon. 109° to the California line, which before that time had belonged to the territory of New Mexico. Since then the N. W. corner has been ceded to Nevada. No thorough exploration of central Arizona was attempted until 1862 and 1863, while much of the northern portion has never been explored.