Columbia, the name of nearly thirty places in the United States, of which the most important are: (1) The capital of South Carolina, at the head of navigation on the Congaree River, 130 miles NNW. of Charleston by rail. It has a fine granite state-house ($3,000,000), a Presbyterian theological seminary, and the university of South Carolina (1806). Pop. (1880) 10,036; (1900) 21,118. - (2) A borough of Pennsylvania, on the Susquehanna, 80 miles W. of Philadelphia, with ironfurnaces and rolling-mills, and manufactures of machinery, flour, etc. Pop. 12,599. - <3) The capital of Maury county, Tennessee, on the Duck River, 45 miles SSW. of Nashville by rail, with manufactures of ploughs, furniture, and flour. Pop. 6370. - (4) The capital of Boone county, Missouri, 24 miles E. of Boonville, with manufactures of flour, tobacco, and woollens, and with the state university (1840). Pop. 6000.
Columbia, or Oregon, after the Yukon the largest river on the west side of America, rises in British Columbia, on the west slope of the Rocky Mountains, near Mounts Brown and Hooker, in about 50° N. lat., has a very irregular course, generally south-west, through Washington, forms the northern boundary of Oregon for about 350 miles, and enters the Pacific by an estuary 35 miles long and from 3 to 7 wide. Its estimated length is 1400 miles; its drainage area 298,000 miles, its chief affluents being Clarke's Fork and the Snake River (with very remarkable canons). Navigation is rendered difficult by a surf-beaten bar, and by falls and rapids; still, goods are conveyed by steamboats and short intermediate railways for nearly 500 miles. The extraordinarily abundant salmon-fisheries of the Columbia have been largely developed; and there are many canneries, mostly near the mouth of the river.
Columbia, British, is a province of the Dominion of Canada, bounded on the N. by the 60th parallel of latitude; on the S. by the United States; on the W. by the Pacific Ocean and part of Alaska; and on the E. by the provisional districts of Alberta and Athabasca (Northwest Territories). Its area is 390,344 sq. m., including Vancouver Island (14,000 sq. m.) and Queen Charlotte Islands (5100 sq. m.), 200 miles NW. of Vancouver Island. British Columbia was practically under the control of the Hudson Bay Company until 1858, when, owing to the discovery of gold, it was made a crown colony. Vancouver Island was united with it in 1866, and the province joined the Canadian Confederation in 1871. The scenery is rugged and picturesque. Between the western slopes of the Rocky Moun-tains (highest peaks, Mount Brown, 16,000 feet, and Mount Hooker, 15,700 feet) and the sea the area is largely occupied by spurs and outlying groups of that chain. Near the coast these form the Cascade Range. Of the rivers the most important is the Fraser, 800 miles long, and 600 yards wide at its principal outlet in the Gulf of Georgia. Of the Columbia only the upper portion is within the province. Many varieties of climate are found. That of Vancouver Island and the coast of the mainland is very similar to that of the south of England. The interior is divided as to climate into three zones - the south, the middle, and the north. In 1881 the population was 49,459, and in 1901, 190,000, including about 25,000 Indians and 10,000 Chinese. The principal towns on Vancouver Island are Victoria, the capital (pop. 21,000), and Nanaiino; on the mainland there are New Westminster, formerly the capital of British Columbia, and Vancouver (27,000), the terminus of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The provincial government is administered by a lieutenant-governor, appointed and paid by the Dominion, and a Legislative Assembly, elected by the inhabitants.
The province is not likely to become an agricultural country, but there is a considerable area of land available for arable and pastoral farming both on Vancouver Island and on the mainland in the river-valleys. The rich valley of the lower Fraser, or New Westminster district, is the largest compact agricultural area on the mainland. Of the total area (say 250,000,000 acres) only about 900,000 acres are as yet occupied. The fruit-growing industry is still in its infancy. The principal industries of the province are connected with the mines, the fisheries, and the forests. The minerals form one of its chief resources. Gold, coal, silver, iron, copper, galena, mercury, platinum, antimony, bismuth, molybdenum, plumbago, mica, and other minerals have been discovered in different parts, copper being very widely distributed. The quartz-mines have been little drawn on; most of the metal secured has come from the alluvial deposits. Coal and lignite exist in many parts of the mainland. At Nanaimo, on Vancouver Island, there is a large coalfield, and an extensive export, largely to the United States. Excepting the salmon-fishery, the rich fisheries have not yet been developed. The fur-sealing industry in the Pacific is also valuable. But little timber has yet been cut, notwithstanding the immense forests of magnificent trees that abound. Until the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1885, British Columbia was isolated from the rest of the Dominion. Now, however, it occupies a favourable position in regard to the markets of the west of South America and Australasia. Lines of steamers connect Vancouver with Hong-kong and Australian ports. The telegraph cable to Australia was completed in 1902. The dispute as to the boundary between Alaska and British Columbia was finally settled by a commission in 1903. See works by Peinberton, Rattray, Mac-donald, Macfie, Leonard (published between 18G0 and 1870), H. H. Bancroft (1887), Lees and Clutterbuck (1888), Begg (1896), and Baillie-Grohman (1900).
Columbia, District of, in the United States. Bee District of Columbia.