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History of Inverness County, Nova Scotia
Chapter VII - Geological Notes


General Principles of Erosion. - The physical features of a country are the result of agencies that act upon the surface and in the underlying rock. The rain, with small proportions of certain gases which it has washed out of the atmosphere, causes the rock to decay. Frost aids the process by enlarging the openings along joint planes and pore spaces thus increasing the exposed surface. The decayed rock, in the form of clay, mud and coarser fragments, accumulates upon a level country and even on slopes to form the soil. On an inclined surface, however, the general tendency of this detrital material is to move towards a lower level. The movement is brought about, at first very largely by the rain wash; but the power of transportation rapidly increases as the rain gathers into rills, and the rills join to become brooks, and the brooks unite to form rivers. The finer material is borne easily along, but the coarser fragments, rolled or pushed along the bottom, are used by the stream to wear away the solid rock, and during the journey downward are themselves worn into rounded sand and pebbles. In the trunk stream and its tributaries and on the inter-stream areas as well, the work of erosion goes on, the streams entrenching themselves more deeply, the valleys widening through general denudation, the finer material being carried far downward even to the sea and there deposited, and the coarser either ground up fine or left somewhere along the stream course. As rocks vary much in character, some being soft, others hard; some easily decomposed, others more resistent; some flat-lying, others tilted or folded; some bedded, others massive; the agencies acting upon them produce various results that tend to increase the surface irregularities and emphasize the physical features. Nature thus carves out of the solid rock land forms -mountains, hills and ridges with intervening valleys, ravines and gorges-while the debris is lodged on slopes, built into flood plains and deltas, or deposited in the sea to reappear at some subsequent period in the world's history as the solid rock of a new land mass.

The work of the waves is similar to that of the streams in that it more rapidly wears away the softer and weaker rock, forming coves and bays, and leaves the harder and stronger as outstanding capes and headlands. The tools used by the waves are fragments of rock torn from the land; and they, as in the case of the material in the stream-bed, become ground down and rounded and converted into cobble-stones, gravel, sand and clay.

The combined action of streams and waves tends to reduce the land area, and ultimately to bring it to the level or near the level of the sea-to base-level or make of it what is known as a peneplain. These geological processes are so slow as generally to escape observation, but given sufficient time for the task, they will bring about the final result - peneplanation. There are, however, two important factors that may either hasten or retard this result. The relative position of land and sea is not permanent. Sometimes the shore-line around the land mass rises, at other times it sinks-the sea apparently receding at one time and advancing at another. This elevation or subsidence has its effect upon base-levelling. When the coast is raised, the streams and waves have additional work set before them; when it subsides, the strand-line is moved in over the land, the lower courses of the streams are submerged and peneplanation is urged forward.

Topography.-The relationship between topographical features and underlying rock is well illustrated in Cape Breton Island, the frame work of which consists of an ancient mass of crystalline rock associated with metamorphic types both of igneous and o f sedimentary origin. Overlying, in many places, flanking or surrounding and extending seaward, are formations of newer rock almost altogether sedimentaries. The physical features naturally fall into two divisions, Highlands and Lowlands, corresponding largely with these two different kinds of rock. A geological map of the Island shows the larger river valleys floored along their lower courses by the younger Carboniferous rock, -clear evidence that the drainage of today was established in pre-Carboniferous time, and that, during the Carboniferous period, at least the lowlands of the present were covered by the sea. The Highlands, where extensive, have a comparatively level summit, bare reek showing in places, and marshes, ponds, sluggish streams and stunted shrubs appearing among timbered areas. Even where the summit area is small this flat condition prevails, and the general elevation is preserved. This level skyline is most noticeable from the sea, or to one standing upon a prominence in the region, and it impels one to the conclusion that this country was at some time in the far past reduced to base-level. R. A. Daly calls the highlands a remnant of an uplifted Cretaceous peneplain. If this be so, then, since the uplift, the most of the streams have found, and now run in, their old pre-Carboniferous channels. A recent subsidence has drowned the lower courses of the rivers.

During the Great Ice Age, the Island was glaciated. The evidence is found largely on the lowlands. The drift is not abundant, nor are the glacial scratches found numerous; but, especially along the western coast, the rock surface just above the reach of the waves is smoothed and grooved by the ice action, and mounds of glacial drift in places over a hundred feet thick are found. Here the ice movement seems to have been towards the land, and elsewhere it followed the depressions, its course being well northward in the eastern portion of the Island.

The erosion, sedimentation, earth movements and glaciation for Cape Breton Island, as described above, are applicable to Inverness County. The division into highlands and lowlands strikingly applies. The county-line follows somewhat closely the watershed through the northern tableland area except where the North Aspy and Cheticamp are streams of some length where they cross the line from opposite directions. In a similar manner, the divide is followed south to Little Narrows. Thence the line runs westward along the south shore of St. Patrick's Channel to Portage which it crosses to the waters of the Great Bras D'Or, and follows the shore of the Lake to the head of West Bay. From here, it is in a straight line with but one jog to the head of Ship Harbour on the Strait of Canso.

The Inverness Highlands.-The northern part of the county is largely a highland region with an average elevation of over a thousand feet-a comparatively level area, broken by knobs, low hills and valleys that are shallow except towards the margin of the tract where the larger streams have entrenched themselves deeply and formed gorges and cascades. This older land mass either presents a bold front to the sea, or is bordered by a fringe of the lowlands. Southwards are areas with a slightly lower elevation, but underlain by rock similar to that of the, north, and with the same characteristic flatness of top. Such are the Mabou Highlands, Creignish Hills, North Mountain of West Bay, the Mullach Bucklaw and Lake Ainslie Hills, a large part of the country between Southwest Margaree and Middle River, the Sugar Loaf of Margaree, and a large district between the Upper North East Margaree, Forest Glen and the head waters of the upper tributaries of Gallant River. Where the summit is of large extent on these highlands, "barrens" occur on which rock outcrops appear in places with the vegetation varying from moss and marsh grasses, through low shrubs into stunted trees around the margin.

The Mabou Highlands have grassed hills, parklands, and forested areas, and are high, steep, and imposing where they face the waters of the Gulf. The Creignish Hills and North Mountains are steepest towards the salt water bodies that front them. They and isolated areas north of them have the general northeast-southwest trend 'characteristic of similar masses in the eastern part of the Island and known as Appalachian structure. The Sugar Loaf is a picturesque hill with grassy slopes overlooking the surrounding deeply trenched valley of the Margaree in the west, the more open valley of the smaller streams on the east, and the beautiful pass that joins these valleys.

Although local variations occur, there is a marked similarity among -the rocks of these highlands. It is highly probable that the isolated areas are connected underneath the younger rock. It may be that in various parts of the county where hills of younger rock have an elevation not much less than that of the older, a care of the latter rock lies beneath the former. Salt Mountain and adjoining hills to the eastward :along St. Patrick's Channel, hills stretching along from Mabou to Margaree, Bald Mountain, Pleasant Bay, Bear's Hill at Cape St. Lawrence and others may have such a structure.

Rocks of the Highlands. - Numerous descriptions of the rocks from various localities of this old land mass are to be found in the Reports of the Geological Survey of Canada. They are the work, largely, of the late Hugh Fletcher, a careful observer, an indefatigable worker, and a most likeable man. The term "Syenite" was used by Fletcher in the old sense to designate a rock made up of quartz, feld-spar and hornblende. In later usage, this is a hornblende-granite. More recent workers in certain districts call Fletcher's "syenite" a granite. The rock mass is in many places intricately mixed, the oldest being much metamorphosed. Gneisses, schists and quartzites occur. There are also volcanics such as felsites, quartz-felsites, porphyries and trap, some of which is amygdaloidal. The grained rocks are granite, diorite and syenite. The bulk of the rocks is of igneous origin; but some of them are, without a doubt, altered sedimentaries. At or near the top of this complex mass, either interbedded with the altered sedimentaries or in contact with the igneous rock, is a series of crystalline limestones and dolomites-the George River Limestone of Fletcher. It occurs in all the areas of old rock, in widely scattered belts in the northern region, .but in the Creignish Hills and the North Mountains there are numerous zones especially around the margins of the old rock mass. In some places the beds are thin; in others, a hundred feet or so in thickness.

All this rock, Fletcher called pre-Cambrian, but left no record of relationship between the members of the group, other than that of the George River Limestone. Recently, Mr. W. J. Wright, in a published report on the geology of the Clyburn Valley, Ingonish, states that the oldest formation there - the Clyburn - "was intruded by the Ingonish gneiss, and the two were subjected to great deformational processes before the intrusion of the Franey granite." Wright's Franey Granite is the same rock as Fletcher's syenite. Many of Fletcher's descriptions seem to fit Wright's interpretation of the structure in the Clyburn Valley, and it may be that a similar succession obtains for the whole massif. If so, the altered sedimentaries and volcanics are the oldest, and were intruded by the gneisses, and, perhaps at a much later time, both formations were intruded by the granite.

The hills, such as Salt Mountain, that are made up of younger rock, with perhaps a core of the older, are in large part Carboniferous sedimentaries.

The Lowlands. - The surface of the remainder of the county consists of intervals, low plains, and dissected uplands. A fringe of these lowlands extends along the coast from Creignish to Cheticamp, with a break at Cape Mabou. In places, it is narrow; elsewhere, it embraces the whole breadth of the county. North of Cheticamp, a second and a third belt of the lowlands is encountered at the margin of the old land. The drainage basins of all the larger streams-the Inhabitants, Denis, Skye, Mabou, Broad Cove, Margaree - are largely in this lowland region. Where, as in the case of the North East Margaree and the Cheticamp, a large part of the drainage is in the highlands, the lowlands extend far up among the hills.

Rocks of the Lowlands. - Forming a fringe along the shore from Creignish to Hastings, and extending around the base of the Creignish hills towards the north to beyond Queensville, is a belt of igneous and altered sedimentary deposits, in places much contorted, which Fletcher called Devonian.

All the remaining consolidated rocks belong to the Carboniferous System. The lowest member consists of shales, sandstones, grits and conglomerates, in places greatly, altered by intrusions of trap and of diorite. Elsewhere, it is less altered and not associated with trap. This series is often found flanking or surrounding an area of the older rock. Overlying this is a series consisting of marine limestone, often oolitic, gypsum and associated calcareous rocks, sandstone, etc. This occurs largely around the coast, and in the valleys of the larger streams. Both these series are Lower Carboniferous.

The Upper Carboniferous is represented by the Coal Measures and consists of shales, sandstones, and interbedded seams of coal. An isolated area of these rocks occurs at River Inhabitants. The main portion, however, consists of a series of narrow areas along the coast from Judique to Cheticamp. These are remnants of a once extensive basin which has been, to a large degree, removed by the action of the sea. The beds have a seaward dip, so that where coal occurs, as at Port Hood, Mabou, Inverness, St. Rose and Chimney Corner, it extends under the waters of the Gulf. How far seaward the coal beds, extend, or, in other words, what was the western limit of the swamps in which flourished the vegetation that produced the coal, it is not possible to say. On the low-lying portions around the margin of the land mass as it was at that epoch in the world's history, these swamps had their origin. How much more extensive the land was then than it is& today is unknown, but it is significant that at various places around the southern borders of the Gulf in the Maritime Provinces and in Newfoundland, the coal measures occur. The land must have been subjected to small oscillatory movements of elevation and depression in order that one bed of coal should succeed another with intervening strata as they are found today.

Coal Occurrences and Coal Resources.-Near the head waters of River Inhabitants, about midway between Glendale and Big Brook, is• an area underlain by rocks of the Coal Measures. The basin, in which coal is found, is of small extent, approximately one square mile. The seams are thin, the largest which is the uppermost, having a thickness of but one foot, eight inches, and the beds of coal occur near the top of the series. Mr. D. B. Dowling, [Coal Fields and Coal Resources of Canada. Geological Survey, Dept of Mines, Ottawa Memoir No. 59.] of the Canadian Geological Survey,. gives the "probable reserve" of this basin as 1,000,000 metric tons. [The metric ton is equivalent to 2,204.6 pounds avoirdupois.]

At Port Hood, the coal-bearing strata run parallel to the shore for about two miles with a low dip towards the sea, but as they continue southward the dip increases until it becomes steep. This deformation has probably caused the coal beds to curve westward towards the south.. These beds are apparently broken by a fault somewhere between Smith Island and the mainland, as rocks of Lower Carboniferous age appear in the cliffs of the island. There are several small coal seams less than twenty inches in thickness underlying the main seam which is seven feet thick. There is said to be another seam higher up in the series outcropping beneath the waters of the harbour. Considerable work was done on this area previous to 1878 when the mine was closed down. The main seam was a producer from 1899 to 1911 when the sea entered the mine and work had to be discontinued. In 1910, the production was 86, 847 tons. This seam has since been opened further south, and last year (1920) produced 53,745 tons. The "probable reserve" is placed by Dowling at 3,000,000 metric tons for a one foot seam in a land area of three square miles, and 12,000,000 metric tons for a submarine area of two square miles recoverable from a six-foot seam.

The Mabou coal area is a small field, much faulted, where several seams of good thickness outcrop on Coal Mine and Finlay Points. There are seams 7 feet, 8 feet, 15 feet and 5 feet. The coal is submarine, dipping at a somewhat steep angle seaward, but changing to a much easier one a few hundred feet down the slope and probably flattening out at a small depth. Coal was produced from this area for some years and taken over a railway about six miles long to a shipping pier at Mabou Harbor. In 1903, the production was 6,859 tons. The mine was flooded by the sea in 1909. Dowling states that the "actual reserve" here is 12,000,000 metric tons; the "probable reserve" 36,000,000; and he considers the latter a moderate estimate.

"At the mouth of Broad Cove river, a narrow belt of coal measures, resting on pre-Cambrian at the south and on Lower Carboniferous at the north, contains several seams the exact a real distribution of which has not been determined." Twelve seams are reported. Measurements made by Prof. H. Y. Hind in 1873 gave six seams. The same beds measured later by Mr. Charles Robb gave the following section:

1. A three-foot seam.
Intervening strata with a reported 5 foot seam....376 feet.

2. A seven-foot seam.
Intervening strata 437 feet.

3. A four-and-a-half-foot seam.
Intervening strata 303 feet.

4. A three-foot seam....
Intervening strata 32 feet

5. A three-foot-nine-inch seam.

Recent borings seem to prove the presence of eight seams occuring as follows in descending order [Communication from Mr. R. D: Anderson, until recently of the Department of Public Works and Mines, Halifax.]: - 5 ft., 4 ft. 8 in., 6 ft., 7 ft. 2 in., 5 ft. 2 in., 7 ft., 5 ft., 10 ft. The main seam, No. 2 in Robb's section, has been a large producer since the completion of the railroad to Port Hastings in 1900-'01 and its extension later to Point Tupper. In 1913 this seam produced 327,613 tons; in 1920, the production was 182,000 tons. Mining has extended beneath the sea about 3500 feet. In the summer of 1920, work was begun on a new slope, the Henderson, to open up a seam 1600 feet northeast of the No. 1 slope. This seam is 13 feet, with 7 feet of clean coal in the upper part and with shale parting below.

At Port Ban, three miles south of Inverness town, a seam containing over six feet of coal but with a shale parting of 2 feet is in course of development From the measurements of Robb, Dowling estimated the "actual reserve" at - marine, 86,000,000 metric tons; land, 28,800,000. The result of recent borings will very materially increase this estimate.

The two areas further north known to be underlain by coal seams are St. Rose and Chimney Corner "separated by about one and a half miles of unproved territory." According to the report of Dr. A. O. Hayes (1918) the St. Rose area appears to contain three seams of coal lying in a basin limited on the west side by an unconformity or fault, or both, which causes the coal to closely overlie the Lower Carboniferous gypsum at this side. "No. 1 seam is said to be about four feet thick. No. 2 contains five feet two inches solid coal with only a quarter inch clay parting one foot eight inches from the roof. No. 3 is reported to be six feet thick with two four-inch partings." The gross tonnage of this area, Hayes estimated at 9, 500,000, or a recoverable total of 7,500,000. The Chimney Corner area shows three workable seams in a section exposed across the strike in the cove. Prof. Hind's measurements gave the following sections:

1. Thin seams, 1 foot 6 inches.
2. Strata about 300 feet.
3. Coal, 3 feet
4. Strata, 88 feet.
5.-Coal-main seam-five feet.
6. Strata, 200 feet.
7. Coal, 3 feet, 6 inches.

"The land area seems to be a shallow basin with the western edge turned downwards towards the sea." Somewhat extensive operations were carried on here between 1866 and 1873 on two seams. In 1873, the surface buildings were destroyed by fire and the work ceased, but has been intermittently carried on since then. Hayes estimated the coal recoverable from this area as 6,000,000 tons. Dowling gives for St. Rose and Chimney Corner "actual reserve," - land 21,000,000 metric tons; "probable reserve'' - land, 18,000,000 tons; sea, 25,000,000.

The Coal Measures at Friar's Head and Cheticamp Island as well as those of Margaree, Smith and Henry Islands, are not known to contain coal.

The reserves of coal for Inverness County' as given by Dowling are land areas-"actual," 61,800,000 - "probable," 22,000,000; submarine areas-"actual," 86,000,000 - "probable," 73,000,000 metric tons-altogether, 242,800,000 metric tons. An estimate made in 1914 by the Mines Department at Halifax placed the amount of coal in situ at 882,000,000 tons. Since that date, a much greater thickness of workable coal has been proved by borings.

Limestone. - Limestone is abundant in the George River Limestone series, which is found chiefly on the North Mountain and Craignish Hills. At Marble Mountain, the crystalline limestone is extensively quarried for the use of the Dominion Iron and Steel Company as a flux in the production of iron. Some limestone also occurs in the Lower Carboniferous rocks, usually associated with gypsum. Localities where limestone beds are known to exist are marked on the excellent map sheets of the Canadian Geological Survey. The surface of an area underlain by limestone is usually characterized by caves, and depressions known as "sink-holes."

Gypsum [Information about this mineral maybe obtained in report on the Gypsum Deposits of be Maritime Province" by W: F, Jennison Department of Mines, Ottawa. ]. - Gypsum beds are numerous throughout the county where it is underlain by Lower Carboniferous rocks. Places where these are known to occur may also be found by reference to the geological map sheets. In several localities, the deposits are extensive and thick, and where transportation facilities are suitable, should be of economic importance. At Cheticamp there is a plant for the manufacture of the calcined product. The raw material is of good quality, the deposit a large one, and the distance from the quarries to the shipping pier makes a short haulage, so that this industry should have a future of promise, throughout the Lower Carboniferous. A gypsum district is easily recognized by the pitted appearance of the surface produced by the inverted-cone depressions known as "plaster holes."

Barytes. - At several places in the county small veins of barytes occur, in the pre-Cambrain, the Devonian, or the Carboniferous. In two localities it is found in some quantity-at Cape Rouge, Cheticamp, and on the east side of Lake Ainslie. In both places, the mineral occurs in the pre-Cambrian, either lying in, or in the neighborhood of igneous rocks. At Cape Rouge, the deposits lie in schists, the veins running about north and south and thinning to a few inches or thickening to a few feet along the length. About 1903, there were produced here 1,163 tons; but production has ceased, probably on account of the nature of the deposit.

For a few years, in the early part of the century, the deposits of Lake Ainslie were the only producers of barytes in Canada. The district in which the mineral occurs lies along the flank of the hills, extending from the outlet to Trout Brook. The barytes-bearing rock is a reddish felsite with associated trap, the mineral occurring in veins. The properties worked are at Scotsville, East Lake Ainslie and Trout Brook. The boulders of Barytes found in the soil seem to paint to the presence of some seven veins near the Gairloch Mountain road, north of Trout Brook. The veins run approximately north and south varying in width, the main vein being about eight feet. At certain points, branch veins come in from the sides thus adding to the extent of the deposit. This deposit has been a producer since the discovery of the commercial value of the heavy white mineral. The product was hauled to and shipped from Whycocomagh. It is now owned by the Brandram-Henderson, Ltd., and is used by them in connection with the manufacture of paint. Last year (1920) about 550 tons were mined. At East Lake Ainslie there are several veins, the occurrence here and at Scotsville being similar to that of Trout Brook. These properties are owned by the "Barytes Limited" company. A refining plant was erected at Scotsville in 1901. The product was conveyed across the lake, eight miles, by a steam barge to a special siding near Strathlorne Station. Three veins have been worked here, the largest varying from eight to sixteen feet. In 1914, the production was 612 tons. The raw material at Scotsville is of a better quality than that at East Lake Ainslie. In 1920, the plant of Barytes Limited was not in operation.

Magnetite and Hematite.-Occurrences of iron oxides have been found in various parts of the county. At Upper Glencoe in the Creignish Hills at an elevation of 500 feet above sea level, magnetite occurs along the contact of pre-Cambrian limestone and granite. About ten years ago, considerable work was done on this area by the Dominion Iron and Steel Company in the way of trenching and sinking test-pits. A magnetometric survey of the locality was also made in 1913, by E. Lindeman for the Department of Mines, Ottawa [Summary Report of the Mines Branch of the Department of Mines, 1913,]. The magnetite occurs in small, irregular masses and lenses lying in succession along the contact. The survey and exploration work done so far does not seem to warrant the belief that the occurrence is of economic importance.

At various places on the slopes of Skye Mountain [Summary Report of the Mines Branch of the Department of Mines, 1913.], iron oxides have also been found and exploration work has been done, but with no satisfactory results. At Iron Brook', magnetite and hematite occur in quartzite with a large amount of iron pyrites. At Campbell's Brook', there is an occurrence of pre-Cambrian limestone impregnated with grains of magnetite or iron-bearing silicates. At Logan Glen 1, specular hematite occurs filling fissures in Lower Carboniferous conglomerate. The veins are none of them over four inches in thickness.

Clay and Shale.-There is a number of occurrences of tough, plastic surface clays of glacial origin throughout the county. Some of the deposits are suitable for the manufacture of bricks and tiles. At River Denys and at Orangedale, and a number of years ago, at Mabou and at Judique, this clay was made into bricks. The economic importance of other localities has not been tested. Shale, which is a consolidated clay or mud, exists in thick bodies in parts of the Lower Carboniferous and in the Coal Measures. This rock when crushed and moistened has the properties of clay. The use of certain shales in the manufacture of cement is well known. There are also the possibilities of the shale being a fire-clay, or an oil-shale. In fact, one of the best clays in the Province is found over-lying the Hussey coal seam at Inverness. "This shale could be used for pressed brick, and, if mixed with some burned clay, for firebrick, and it is also the kind used for mixing with short-fibre asbestos for making asbestic [The Clay and Shale Deposits of Nova Scotia and Portions of New Brunswick. Department of Mines, Ottawa. Memoir No. 16-E]."

Magnesite. - About one mile east of Orangedale is a deposit of magnesite discovered in 1916. The mineral is crystalline and in the magnesite body are small cores of dolomite. It occurs in association with the dolomite and gypsum of the Lower Carboniferous, and, according to Dr. Hayes, is apparently of secondary origin, derived from the associated dolomite. [Summary Report, Department of Mines, Ottawa, 1916.] The property was acquired by the Nova Scotia Steel and Coal Company, but does not appear to be of any great extent. The mineral has many uses among which an important one is that for lining furnaces where great heat is required.

Some Other Minerals.- Gold, argentiferous galena carrying some gold, and copper-bearing minerals occur in the northern part of the county in the old rocks, but have not been proven to be of commercial importance. This old mass of rock, however, is worthy of some attention especially near the contact of igneous rocks with sedimentaries. An interesting boulder containing a tungsten-bearing mineral was some years ago found at Emerald, Northeast Margaree, but its former resting place has not been located. For a number of years, oil seepage was known from the Lower Carboniferous rocks around Lake Ainslie. Exploitation by borings has failed to establish the presence of petroleum in commercial quantity.

Building Stone. - In many localities, there may be found good material for building purposes. That at Graham River, near Judique, and at other places has been used locally. On Cheticamp Island, there is an excellent sandstone of which the fine Roman Catholic Church at Eastern Harbour was built.

The mineral wealth of the county will, therefore, be seen to lie in its coal which awaits further development; its limestone and gypsum, barely touched up to the present; clay and shales which warrant study and possibly exploitation; barytes which also warrants further study and exploitation; and building stone. In the rough, hilly districts, and where so much of the rock is hidden by forest and covered with glacial drift, there is always the possibility of further discoveries.

Soil. - The mineral resources of a country are of such a nature that they ultimately become exhausted. There is only a certain amount in the rocks, and when this is extracted, its economic value is gone. Of a different nature is another resource which the geologist claims as a part of his domain. Soil results from the disintegration of rock with the addition of a varying amount of decayed vegetable material. Inverness county has great wealth in its soil The rich alluvium of the larger river valleys produces excellent crops of hay, grain and vegetables, and some fruit. The glacial drift of the uplands makes a very good soil, and even the slopes of the hills yield excellent pasturage. The story of farming in Inverness is, however, the same as that of most countries. The pioneer farmer exploited a virgin soil, taking crop after crop from it without, in many cases, returning to it an adequate supply of fertilizer. The result has been an exhausted soil, and often abandoned farms, for it is only by conserving its richness that the fertility of the soil may be retained ear after year. It is a matter of general satisfaction and of prime importance to the country to note that this frontier method of farming is steadily giving place td scientific methods, with their suitable rotation of crops and skilful utilization of proper fertilizers. The many beautiful, prosperous looking farms throughout the county attest to this, and make a strong appeal to the satiated city-dweller attest get a home in the country where more of the gifts of a bountiful Nature may be obtained. It is surely not too much to hope that, with all our modern improvements, the time is not distant when the condition of the farmer will have removed from it much of the present-day drudgery, and when with good roads, telephone in general use, automobiles, and scientific methods on the farm, the dweller in the country will be as near the town as he wishes to be, and the "back-to-the-land" movement will have become firmly established.


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