436

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436

CHILE.

[their masters, tliat the greatest punishment inflicted
on them would be to sell them to others. Masters
nevertheless exercise the rights of fathers of fami
lies over their slaves, in correcting them for their
faults.

12. Internal and external commerce, mines,
imports, and exports. — The internal commerce of
Chile has been hitherto of very little importance,
notwithstanding the advantages that the country
offers for its encouragement. Its principal source,
industry, or more properly speaking, necessity, is
wanting. An extensive commerce is correlative
with a great population, and in proportion as the
latter increases, the former will also be augmented.
Hitherto it may be said, that of the two branches
that in general give birth to commerce, agriculture
and industry, the first is that alone which animates
the internal: commerce of Chile, and even that
part of the external which is carried on with Peru.
The working of mines also occupies the attention
of many in the provinces of Copiapo, Coquimbo,
and Quillota ; but the industry is so trifling that
it does not deserve the name. Notwithstanding the
abundance of its fruits and materials of manufacture,
as flax, wool, hemp, skins and metals, which might
produce a flourishing commerce, it is conducted
but languidly. The’inhabitants employ themselves
only in making ponchos, stockings, socks, carpets,
blankets, skin-coats, saddles, hats, and other small
articles chiefly made use of by the common or
poorer class of people, since those of the middle
rank employ those of European manufacture.
These, but more particularly the sale of hides and
tanned leather, which they have in great plenty,
with that of grain and wine, form the whole of the
internal commerce of the kingdom. The external,
which is carried on with all the ports of Peru, par
ticularly Callao, arises from the exportation of
fruits ; this amounts to 700,000 dollars annually,
according to the statements given in the periodical
publications at Lima. The commerce between
Chile and Buenos Ayres is quite otherwise, since
for the herb of Paraguaj/ dXone, it is obliged to ad
vance 300,000 dollars annually in cash ; the
other articles received from thence are probably
paid for by those sent thither. In the trade with
Spain, the fruits received from Chile go but a little
way in payment of more than a million of dollars,
which are received from thence annually in Euro
pean goods, either directly, or by the way of
Buenos Ayres, and sometimes from Lima. Gold,
silver, and copper, are the articles which form
nearly the whole of this commerce, since the hides
and vicuna wool are in such small quantities as to
render them of little importance.

Notwithstanding theworkingofthe mines in Chile
has in a great measure been relinquished from theex
pence,and from the impediments offered by the war
like spirit of the Araucanians, there are more than a
thousand now in work between the cities of Co
quimbo and Copiapo, besides those of the province
of Aconcagua ; and it is a matter of fact that the
produce of its mines has been increasing ever
since that the passage into the S. sea by cape Horn
was frequented by the Spanish merchants. The
gold coined in the capital was lately regulated at
5200 marks annually ; but the present yearly pro
duce of the mines, as calculated from the amounts
of the royal duties, and therefore considerably
under the truth, amounts to 10,000 Spanish marks
of pure gold, and 29,700 do. of pure silver. The
value in dollars of both is 1,737,380; the gold
being estimated at 145i*#^ dollars, and the silver
at 9 t'V dollars the Spanish mark. Besides^ this, we
must add for contraband 322,620 dollars ; and
the total produce will then be 2,060,000. Accord
ing to liumboldt, the dollars imported into Chile
and Peru in 1803 amounted to 11,500,000, and
the exports consisted of produce to the value of
4,000,000 dollars, besides 8,000,000 dollars in
specie. The receipts of Chile, Guatemala, and Ca
racas, are consumed within the country. The re
mittances of gold and silver to Spain are usually
made from Buenos Ayres ; the first being less
bulky, is carried by the monthly packets in
sums of 2 or 3000 ounces ; as to the second,
it has, till within a very late period, been sent in
two convoy ships in the summer, by which con
veyances gold is also remitted. The copper which
is extracted from the mines is estimated from 8
to 10,000 quintals. From these data it will not
be difficult to form a general estimate of all that
Chile produces annually. A communication by
water, which greatly facilitates the progress of
commerce, has been already commenced. In se
veral of the ports, barks are employed in the trans
portation of merchandize, which was before carried
by land upon mules. Several large ships have
also been built in the harbour of Concepcion and
the mouth of the river Maule. The external com
merce is carried on with Peru and Spain. In the
first, 23 or 24 ships, of 5 or 600 tons each, are em
ployed, which are partly Chilian and partly Peru
vian. These usually make three voyages in a
year; they carry from Chile wheat, wine, pulse,
almonds, nuts, cocoa-nuts, conserves, dried meat,
tallow, lard, cheese, sole-leather, timber for build
ing, copper, and a variety of other articles, and
bring back in return silver, sugar, rice and cotton.
The Spanish ships receive in exchange for Euro-1

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