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increase of the United States has been between thirty and forty per cent., ours has fallen more than twenty per cent. below the general rate, being nearly ten per cent. less than that of our neighbors, Massachusetts and Vermont, and less than any other state in the union, Connecticut and Delaware excepted. These may be unwelcome truths, but do they not bring with them an equivalent of consolation and hope? If, as citizens of the state, we lament this depleting operation upon ourselves, owing to the general character of our soil, of the policy alluded to, as citizens of the union, we ought to rejoice, and we do rejoice; for we see in it the promotion of the general good. We see in it a wisdom, a patriotism, and a philanthrophy which looks to the expansion, the strength, the greatness, the happiness and the glory of that union, of which, we bless God that we are members. Every twenty-four hours adds to this union, a population equal to that of one of our well settled towns. Every year a population nearly double that of this state, and in the rapid lapse of that decade of years on which we have entered, the increase will be nearly equal to eighteen such states as our own. The thought is overwhelming; and if there be any thing this side the grave, which can impart value to human existence, and give us a just pride in our being, it is, that we are members of this great and growing community, where liberty and law, social order and self-government, education, virtue and religion and happiness, almost unmingled, go hand in hand, spread and expand with its astonishing increase of human life, and can feel ourselves associated with its past achievements, its present prosperity and its future glory.
And should the ever active intelligence of the nation ascertain that it will be wise in the people to diversify their industry and pursuits in accommodation to the increasing, multifarious, and in
finitely varying wants of an improving and highly civilized state of society, and in accordance also with that diversity of taste and power, of age and sex, of constitutional and mental aptitude in the individuals with whom it has pleased the Almighty to people the world, and by this means to increase indefinitely the working members of the community, who, after supplying their own wants, shall, by the enlargement of their private means, be continually adding something to the surplus stock, and if especially it shall be ascertained that here lies the great secret, of national productiveness, and consequently of national wealth and national power, may we not indulge the hope that a policy which shall cherish and protect the industry of the country against foreign competition, may create a demand and a home market for the products of our soil that shall counteract its depreciation from other causes? That such would be the tendencyof such a policy cannot be doubted. Whether however its efficacy will prove sufficient to raise or only to stop, or only to retard the downward progress in value of our landed estates, remains with the future to decide. But if this compensating policy, (compensating in some degree at least,) shall be withdrawn, and the disposition already manifested to open to cultivation more and more of the soils exuberant in fertility, at cheaper and cheaper rates, shall be followed up, it requires not the aid of prophecy to foretell, that the pressure upon those of us, who shall remain here, will be severe in the extreme.
Writers on population have estimated, that in every thirty years, the number of deaths in a country will equal the number of its inhabitants. This estimate is clearly too short for a climate possessing the salubrity of ours. Say then that in the coming fifty years, death will draw its pall over as many human beings in this state as now
occupy its surfaco. We hare here the paradox of an ever dying, and at the same time an ever living community. It lives by those who come to take the places which we leave, and to succeed to and share what we have irought out for them, whether of good or of evil. How important then to the legislator should appear the even handed justice, the precision and plainness of those rules, by which this succession and distribution is guarded and regulated. How important that they should be carried into effect with a care, and fidelity, and a uniformity, which shall exclude as far as possible every source of questionable right, and every inducement to fraud, litigation and violence, that whatever else we may leave to our survivors, a contentious spirit for the spoils of the dying may not be among our bequests. Pardon me, then, if I urge upon you the duty of cherishing your courts of probate as important agents in our estimable system of civil polity, and the duty also of watching the operation, as well as the administration of our probate laws.
We have spoken of New-Hampshire at different periods, without sufficiently discriminating its real importance at the times of which we spake. What, for instance, may be supposed to have been its population in 1641, at the time of the union with Massachusetts, and when, on the division of that colony into counties in 1643, a county by the name of Norfolk was established, extending from the Merrimack to the Piscataqua, and of which Salisbury near Newburyport was the shire town? No reasonable calculation can assign to our territory at that period, a population exceeding one thousand souls. Yet our settlements had commenced on the Piscataqua twenty years before, and only three years after the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth. Portsmouth and Dover were however thought of sufficient importance, to have
a court approaching in jurisdiction to the county courts of Massachusetts, and the county was usually styled the county of Norfolk, including the county of Dover and Portsmouth.
On our separation, this county of Norfolk was obliterated; and the towns on the Merrimack falling within the jurisdiction of Massachusetts were annexed to their county of Essex. This court of Dover and Portsmouth had a probate jurisdiction, whether limited or not, I have not been able to ascertain.
Again, at what may we estimate our population at the time when by the authority of the crown we were reluctantly and finally separated from Massachusetts in 1692 ? Not more than five thousand souls at most; and even this will shew an increase for the intervening period of fifty years, of about forty per cent. for every ten years. At the time of the division of the province into counties, in 1771, our population has been estimated to be from sixtyfive to sixty-eight thousand. This will give an increase for the preceding eighty years, somewhat less than forty per cent. for every ten years. From this period to 1790, when our population is known to have been one hundred and forty-two thousand, the rate of increase was about forty-three per cent. for every ten years. This may appear extraordinary, considering that the war of the revolution occured within this period, but the division of the province into counties was attended and followed by an unusual influx of population. Massachusetts had been divided into counties more than a century and a quarter before. From 1790 to 1800 the rate of our increase was about thirty per cent.; from 1800 to 1810 about sixteen per cent.; from 1810 to 1820 about fourteen per cent.; and from thence to 1830 about ten per cent. The increase of the population of New-England from foreign sources ceased in 1640, about the time of our union with Massachusetts. From that period more
have gone from it than have come to it; and estimating that for the coming ten years ihe natural increase of our population in this state, will be thirty per cent. (probably it will be nearer forty per cent.) and that we shall be able to retain with.. in our limits one third of that increase, it follows that in this short period, there will proceed from us fifty-four thousand souls to people, and we trust, to bless some other part of God's earth.
Gentlemen of the Historical Society :-Entertaining views as to the time when the common law of England became the common law of NewEngland, somewhat different from those usually expressed on this subject, it was originally my intention to have submitted those views to your indulgence, especially as they would be connected with facts highly illustrative of our civil history, and nearly allied to the subject which has particularly attracted my attention ; but time would fail me, as well as your patience, upon which I fear I have unreasonably trespassed.
Historical Sketches of the Town of Warner, N. H.
By Dr. M. Long. WARNER, a post town in Merrimack county, is situated west of Boscawen ; fifteen miles northwest of Concord, in the latitude of 43 degrees 16 minutes north. It has Sutton,
Wilmot, and Salisbury, on the north, Boscawen on the east, Hopkinton and Henniker on the south, and Bradford on the west, and contains 29,620 acres, including Kearsarge Gore, which was annexed to Warner by an act of the legislature, June, 1818. The Gore, which is a strip of land lying between Salisbury and Sutton, extends from the original north line of Warner to the highest peak of Kearsarge mountain, and contains 4,620 acres.