This page of the book is from "The New Student's Reference Work: Volume 3" by Chandler B. Beach, Frank Morton McMurry and others.
RECLAMATION OP SWAMP-LANDS 1593 RECLAMATION OF SWAMP-LANDS
60,000,000 acies of swamp and overflowed lands in the United States. It is estimated that already as large an area of lands of this character has been reclaimed by drainage, mostly by the effort of .individuals, drainage-associations and states' action, as that secured by irrigation, and that the reclamation of a much larger area is practicable if the work be undertaken by the Federal government. It is well-known that swamp-lands which have been successfully reclaimed have become the richest of agricultural lands. If it were possible to reclaim by drainage 25,000,000 acres of these swamps, the land-values of the country would be increased by more than $2,500,-
000,000. If subdivided into 40-acre farms, these swamps would supply 1,250,000 families with homes.
Many drainage works of minor importance have been undertaken by individuals, corporations, districts and states, and the work of the government thus far has been chiefly in aid of such enterprises. In Louisiana much important work has bsen done in the neighborhood of New Orleans; in Florida near the Everglades; in Minnesota and North Dakota in the upper valley of Red River; in Ind'ana in the Kankakee Marshes; and in California in the lower Sacramento Valley. The people of Illinois, of lower Minnesota and of other portions of the country have built ditches and drained considerable areas of lands which
now are under cultivation. The complications, however, resulting from any attempts on the part of private parties or of counties or states, arising from conflicting rights and benefits, together with the enormous expense which must be incurred, have prevented the undertaking of large projects. This work can be done only by the Federal government, and the subject has secured the attention and the consideration of Congress, a Federal Drainage Bill having been favorably reported. A large amount of preliminary work has already been accomplished in the preparation of topographic maps which give a vast amount of important-information concerning slopes and drainage
of the surface of the land, and show where the swamps occur, their relation both in distance and position to natural drainage-channels and also the altitude of the swamps as referred to the drainage channels. The Secretary of Agriculture in his last report says: "Attention has been given to the possibilities of drainage in the delta-region of the lower Mississippi Valley. The completeness of the levee system is now rendering safe the expenditure of large sums for the improvement of the low, flat lands formerly subject to overflow by the Mississippi floods. The problem of the reclamation of swamp tide-lands along the Atlantic coast has received special attention during the last year. The Everglades of Florida, Dismal Swamp in Virginia, the Kankakee
swamp-areas in united states
The black indicates swamp-areas. The ruled portion indicates areas interspersed with swamps