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The Southern States of America
Chapter V - North Carolina from 1865 to the Present Time


Reconstruction.

On April 13, 1865, the Union army under General Sherman entered Raleigh, and the keys of the capitol were surrendered by ex-Gov. David L. Swain, president of the University of North Carolina, acting under the directions of Governor Vance, who had retreated westward with Gen. Robert F. Hoke's command. When General Schofield reached Greensboro, Governor Vance wished to surrender to him, but was advised by the general to go home and remain there quietly. This he did, but on May 14 he was arrested and, after being carried to Washington, confined in Old Capitol Prison. The state by this time was entirely under the control of the military forces of the United States, and the civil government of the commonwealth had ceased to exist. In its place was military government with General Schofield in command. His administration, which lasted until the end of June, was as acceptable to the people as was possible under the circumstances, and was so successful that peace and good order was rapidly restored and, according to General Schofield, the presence of troops rendered unnecessary. He was very anxious to be provisional governor of the state, and under him restoration would have been very rapid, but President Johnson had other plans in mind. After consultation with a number of people from North Carolina, he had appointed William W. Holden, the editor of the Standard and the leader of the peace movement during the war. Until 1858 he had been the most influential man in the Democratic party, and was probably the most extreme secessionist in the state. In that year he was defeated for the gubernatorial nomination, and from that time was gradually estranged from the party and began to take the position of a strong Unionist. As the war approached he was very bitter in his opposition, but changed in time to sign the secession ordinance and become a strong advocate of the prosecution of the war. By 1862 he was lukewarm to the cause and in 1863 was heading a movement for peace. Defeated by Vance for governor in 1864, he was discredited in the eyes of most of the people. The old Whigs hated him as bitterly as the Democrats, for he had deserted them in 1843 and had been largely responsible for their downfall in 1850. In view of his past record, a more unsuitable person could scarcely have been selected for the responsible post he was now called on to fill.

Johnson's Plan of Reorganization; Governor Holden.

Acting in accordance with the President's proclamations, Governor Holden organized the provisional government of the state and called a convention of the people which met on October 2. Edwin G. Reade was chosen president and the temper of the convention was clearly conciliatory. Ordinances were at once passed declaring the secession ordinance null and void, abolishing slavery and declaring all state offices vacant as a preparation for reorganization. No action would have been taken in regard to the state debt if Governor Holden had not got from the President what was practically a command for the passage of an ordinance of repudiation. This was passed, and after providing for the election of state and county officers, members of Congress and members of the General Assembly, the convention adjourned until the following spring.

Governor Worth.

Governor Holden's part in securing repudiation and his attempt to build up a machine in his own interest through his influence in securing pardons had increased the number of those opposed to him, and, in consequence, when the election for governor approached, Jonathan Worth, an old Whig with a clearer Union record than Holden's, who had seen long service in the General Assembly and as state treasurer during the war, and who was then provisional treasurer, was brought out against him and elected by a majority of over 6,000. Holden attempted to stamp his opponent as a "rebel" and as the representative of the secessionists, and so far succeeded that he was not allowed to take up the reins of government until January, 1866. In the meantime the General Assembly met and elected William A. Graham and John Pool to the United States Senate. Like the members of Congress who had been chosen at the preceding election, they were denied their seats, and the first definite check was thus given the President's plan of restoration.

Owing to this condition of affairs nothing could be accomplished in the way of economic improvement. Labor conditions were particularly chaotic, not only because of the unsettled condition of political affairs and the natural tendency on the part of the negroes to take advantage of their freedom to refuse to work, but also because of the interference of the Freedmen's Bureau. This institution accomplished much for the relief of the destitute and suffering, but it was productive of much harm through the attempts of its officers to array the negroes against the whites and to arouse them to political activity. These officers, so far as was the case in North Carolina, were, in the main, tactless, prejudiced, dishonest and incompetent, and their influence was of the worst kind. The courts were subject to constant interference by the Bureau officials, and it became a matter of impossibility to punish a negro criminal. White men were arrested on the most trivial charges, which were more than often false, and were subjected to severe and humiliating punishments. A contempt for courts was thus bred and was followed by a contempt for law and order among the negroes and among many of the whites. This was not the least of the evils of Reconstruction. The Bureau officers defended their action by many accounts of the injustice which the negroes received from their former owners, but these were distortions of fact. The legislature of 1865-66 adopted the report of a special committee which recognized the citizenship of the negro and gave him practical equality with the white race before the law. At the beginning of the period there was a disposition on the part of the white people to live peaceably with the negroes and to protect them from injustice. But there was a firm belief that the negro was not prepared for political privileges and that he still needed restraint, and this opinion has not been substantially altered in the years that have elapsed.

New Constitution.

In 1866 Governor Worth was reelected over Alfred Dockery by a majority of over 23,000. The convention, in the meantime, had held a second session and submitted to the people a new constitution differing but little from the old one. The most important alteration was the change from federal to white population as the basis of representation. On account of the doubt in the minds of many as to the validity of the convention, and largely through the influence of former Chief Justice Ruffin, the constitution was rejected by the people. The main issue of the campaign was the question of the ratification of the Fourteenth amendment, which had shortly before been submitted to the states. When the legislature met, it was rejected by a large majority, only eleven votes being cast in both houses in its favor. This, however, was a larger vote than it received in any Southern state except Tennessee, where it was ratified.

In the meantime Mr. Holden and others were active in the organization of an opposition which was to be the nucleus of the Republican Party in the state. The economic and financial prostration of the state materially assisted in this, and in the West, always jealous of the East and since the war possessed of an additional cause of hostility, additional strength was found.

Reconstruction Acts.

The result of the election of 1866 gave Congress a new impulse and a new confidence, and the result was the passage of the reconstruction acts of 1867. Under these North Carolina became a part of the second military district under the command of Gen. Daniel E. Sickles. General Sickles desired to interfere as little as possible with the state government, and relied upon Governor Worth for advice in the settlement of many of the questions which soon arose. In pursuance of the reconstruction policy now adopted, the state was divided into eleven military sub-districts, and preparations were made for the registration of voters under the conditions of the reconstruction acts. On account of the test oath being required for all officers, this work was largely in the hands of Northern men and negroes. By military order negroes were also placed on the jury lists. In August General Sickles, who had become involved in a quarrel with the President on account of his famous "General Order No. 10," was removed from command and was succeeded by Gen. E. R. S. Canby.

Under General Canby registration was completed, the lists showing 106,721 whites and 72,932 negroes registered. Fraud in the registration was common, but nothing else was to be expected when the agency and plan are considered. The election was held for two days in November, and out of a total of 125,967 votes, 93,006 were cast for the call of a convention, only two counties, Orange and Currituck, giving majorities against it.

Constitutional Convention.

The convention met in Raleigh on Jan. 1.4, 1868. The Republicans had a majority of ninety-four, of whom sixteen were carpet-baggers and thirteen negroes. Calvin J. Cowles, who was disfranchised under the reconstruction acts, was elected president. The body was completely under the control of the "carpet-baggers," led by Gen. Joseph C. Abbott, David Heaton and Albion W. Tourgee. They were vigorously but ineffectually opposed by the thirteen Conservatives led by Plato Durham and John W. Graham. The convention was the most extravagant lawmaking body in the history of the state to that time, and prepared the way for the reign of corruption and anarchy which followed. It remained in session until March 14, when it adjourned, submitting to the people a constitution which was a complete change from the former one. Universal manhood suffrage was, of course, the most revolutionary change. Among others was the abolition of the distinction between suits at law and suits in equity, the election of judges by the people for a short term; the abolition of any property qualification for holding any office, the creation of a number of new offices, the abolition of the county courts and the substitution of a new form of county government, and the extension of the terms of the state officers from two to four years. When submitted to the people, the constitution was ratified by a majority of over 19,000. At the same time the entire Republican state ticket, headed by William W. Holden, defeated the Conservative ticket, headed by Thomas S. Ashe. Holden's majority was 18,641. The Republicans also elected six of the seven members of Congress. Fraud was again common, and it is worthy of mention that General Canby set the example by excluding from participation in the election, in plain defiance of the constitution, all who had been temporarily disfranchised by the reconstruction acts.

Governor Worth was removed from office on June 30 and Governor Holden took the oath of office on July 4. He entered upon his duties full of hatred for his opponents and intensely ambitious for himself. In consequence of this he was, from the beginning, the tool of the carpet-baggers, and while everything points to the fact that he was personally innocent of any connection with the wholesale plundering that was going on, he was well aware of it and did nothing to check it, but lent the weight of his influence to the spoilers.

Legislature of 1868.

The legislature met July 1 with its membership politically distributed as follows: Senate, 38 Republicans, 12 Democrats; House, 80 Republicans, 40 Democrats. There were twelve carpet-baggers and nineteen negroes among the Republican members. John Pool and Joseph C. Abbot were elected to the United States Senate, and the Fourteenth amendment was immediately ratified. The body then turned to an occupation more immediately profitable to certain of the members. Guided and instructed by a ring dominated by Gen. Milton S. Littlefield and George W. Swepson, the latter a native, a reign of plunder and extravagance was entered upon. Within four months the issue of bonds was authorized to the extent of $25,350,000. About $12,000,000 were actually issued. The bonds were gambled away and otherwise fraudulently disposed of, and this, coupled with the fact that no interest was paid, soon rendered them worthless. Most of this amount was issued to aid in railroad construction, and not a mile of railroad was built in this way. The old debt of the state, principal and interest, already amounted to $16,000,000. The whole property of the state, as assessed, only amounted to $130,000,000. Taxes became confiscatory and, by 1870, land had fallen in value at least 50 per cent. from the value set in 1860. Economic ruin seemed imminent. Corruption was rampant, violence was increasing at a terrible rate, and the courts were so debased that the judges, even of the supreme court, took an active part in politics.

Ku Klux Klan in North Carolina.

For the purpose of protection, and also for political purposes, the Ku Klux Klan was soon organized in the state, and for a time was very active. Its influence upon the minds of the negroes was particularly effective, and it was not without a salutary effect upon the whites against whom it was directed. In time, however, it degenerated as the membership increased, and many of its most influential members left it. It was particularly active in 1869, and apparently was dying out in 1870 when Governor Holden, realizing that the record of the Republican legislature was such as to make it extremely doubtful if the party could win success at the summer elections, conceived the idea of making political capital out of the Ku Klux and making use of means for the suppression of the Klan which, at the same time, would intimidate voters. Accordingly, under authority of the Shoffner act, he began to raise a force of state troops. In defiance of the law this was mainly composed of men from other states, chiefly from Tennessee, and was commanded by George W. Kirk, a Tennessee bushwhacker of the late war. The troops were then sent to Alamance and Caswell counties, which were declared in a state of insurrection on the strength of Ku Klux outrages that had occurred months before. A reign of terror followed, for the troops terrorized every community to which they were sent. Innocent men were arrested by the score and crowded into jail, and some even put to torture.

Among Holden's most bitter personal and political enemies was Josiah Turner, editor of the Raleigh Sentinel, the Democratic organ. By Holden's orders he was arrested at his home in Orange county, which county was not accused of being in insurrection. A writ of habeas corpus was sued out before Chief Justice Pearson, but both Holden and Kirk refused to obey the writ, and Judge Pearson declared that the power of the judiciary was exhausted. The matter looked hopeless, but Judge Brooks, of the United States district court, upon application, issued the writ and prepared to use the force of the United States to support it. Governor Holden, after appealing, without success, to President Grant, gave up his attempt to overawe the people and released the prisoners. It became evident later that it had been his intention to turn them over for trial to a military commission dominated by Kirk, and what their fate would have been is not a matter for doubt. Kirk and his men fled the state to avoid the punishment that threatened them.

End of Reconstruction Period.

The election resulted in an overwhelming victory for the Democrats, and when the General Assembly met in December, Governor Holden was impeached and after conviction removed from office. Lieut.Gov. Tod R. Caldwell succeeded him and, in 1872, was reelected over Augustus S. Merrimon. The General Assembly remained Democratic. Governor Caldwell was a man of bitter prejudices, but was sternly honest. He died in office and was succeeded by Curtis H. Brogden. The carpet-baggers left the state in 1870, and from that time the affairs of the state were administered honestly and with great economy. Several attempts were made by the Democrats to secure the call of a constitutional convention, but they were unable to secure the necessary majority in the legislature, and when the question was submitted to the people it was defeated. Finally, in 1875, a convention was called which made several important changes in the constitution. The most important act was the repudiation of the fraudulent bonded debt of the state. Any payment of this debt must be approved by the people before taking place, and there is little likelihood that such approval will ever be secured. Other important changes were mainly directed to the securing of total separation of the races.

In 187G the Democrats determined to carry the state, and nominated Zebulon B. Vance for governor. He had finally had his political disabilities removed and was in the prime of his powers. He was opposed by Thomas Settle, who resigned from the supreme court to accept the Republican nomination. After the most exciting campaign in the history of the state, Vance was elected and the state carried for Tilden. It had given its electoral vote to Grant in 1868 and in 1872, but it now entered the ranks of the solid South, where it has remained ever since.

State Politics since 1876.

In 1878 Governor Vance was elected to the United States Senate and, upon his acceptance, Lieut.-Gov. Thomas J. Jarvis became governor. He was elected governor in 1880 after a bitter contest for the nomination with Daniel G. Fowle. In 1884 Alfred M. Scales was elected, and in 1888 Daniel G. Fowle. Governor Fowle died in office and was succeeded by Thomas M. Holt. Elias Carr was elected in 1892. All of these were Democrats, and it seemed as if that party were firmly entrenched in power. But in 1894 the Republicans and Populists had a majority in both houses of the General Assembly, and in 1896 fused and elected Daniel L. Russell governor. By the fusion the Republicans were put in complete control of the state government, and there was a general fear in the state that the conditions of Reconstruction would return. The negroes became increasingly powerful in the party, and in the East there was an increasing danger of negro domination. In some counties the situation became unbearable, and in towns like Wilmington, New Bern and Greenville life and property were no longer safe. The municipal governments were controlled by negroes, and magistrates and policemen were frequently colored. Taxation increased without any corresponding benefit, and the outlook was very dark.

When the campaign of 1898 came the Democrats took the issue which had been made for them and appealed to the state on the platform of "White Supremacy." An overwhelming victory was the result. Immediately after the election the people of Wilmington cast off the burden they were carrying by forcing the leading negroes and white Republicans to leave the city, and by electing a mayor and board of aldermen who were pledged to restore order.

When the General Assembly met, it prepared and submitted to the people a constitutional amendment imposing an educational qualification for voting, with a "grandfather clause" to protect the white illiterate voters. This exception expired in 1908. This amendment was the issue of the campaign of 1900, and the Democratic platform pledged the party to create a system of public schools which would give to every man the opportunity of an education. The amendment was adopted by a large majority, and Charles B. Aycock, the Democratic candidate, was elected governor. He was succeeded, in 1904, by Robert B. Glenn.

The effect of the amendment has been, thus far, to give the Democratic party the sure control of the state, but the removal of the negro from politics has had a distinctly liberalizing effect upon state polities, and is destined to cause great changes in the future. Political issues are slowly changing, and the leading questions between the parties in the future will be more of an economic nature than they have been since the War of Secession. There are many reasons to believe that there will be, in the near future, an increasingly powerful body of independent voters that will, in time, make the state a doubtful one. In the period that has elapsed since the adoption of the amendment the negro has profited greatly by his removal from politics, and this fact is generally acknowledged even by the negroes themselves.

Prohibition.-One of the most interesting political movements since the war is prohibition. In 1881 the question of prohibition was submitted to the people and defeated by a vote of 48,370 to 166,325. Since that time there has been a steady growth of prohibition sentiment, and a development of "local option" by means of special legislation. In 1903, by the "Watts Law," the principle of local option was greatly extended, and the manufacture and sale of liquor was confined to incorporated towns. In 1905 a still greater advance was made by a law, later held valid by the supreme court, making the place of delivery the place of sale. Under this legislation 90 per cent. of the state became "dry." At the special session of the legislature, in 1908, the question of state prohibition was submitted to the people, and it was adopted by a majority of 43,000. The law went into effect in January, 1909.

Control of Railroads.-Another political question which has recently been greatly discussed is that of state control of the railroads. In 1891 the legislature established the railroad commission, later changed to the corporation commission, charged with the supervision of the railroads, the steamboat and canal companies, and the express, telegraph and telephone companies doing business in the state. It was made the duty of the commission to prevent extortionate rates, discrimination, the giving of rebates, and other similar abuses. In 1907 the legislature undertook the reduction of passenger rates and provided a heavy fine as a penalty for refusal to obey the law. This was intended to discourage resistance. The railroads refused to obey the law, appealing to United States Circuit Judge Pritchard for an injunction against its enforcement on the ground that the legislation was confiscatory. Judge Pritchard granted a temporary injunction and appointed a commission to take testimony as to whether the rates were confiscatory before making the injunction permanent. Cases against the Southern Railway were brought in the state courts, and Governor Glenn declared his intention of supporting the state courts against Judge Pritchard. A serious crisis seemed imminent, when the railroads agreed to put the new rates into effect until a special session of the legislature could be called to consider a compromise which the railroads offered. The compromise was passed at the special session, and the question was settled, temporarily at least.

Chief Political Question.-The chief political issue since the war, apart from the race question, has been the efficiency and economy of administration. Both parties are now committed to education, the care of the insane and the proper care of Confederate soldiers.

Development of Governmental Activity.

Charities.-A noticeable fact in the story of the state since the war is the great increase in the activity of the state government in regard to things that tend to the building up of state prosperity. Some of these are worthy of discussion. Under the constitution of 1868 provision was made for a board of public charities. This still exists and is of increasing value and importance. The state now supports three hospitals for the insane-at Raleigh and Morganton for white patients, and at Goldboro for colored. The two latter have been built since 1875. The state prison also has a department for the criminal insane. The four institutions combined accommodate nearly 2,000 patients. In Raleigh there is a school for the deaf and blind, and at Morganton one for the deaf and dumb. The state also makes annual appropriations for the soldiers' home and the Masonic and colored orphanages at Oxford. The total number of persons thus aided is about 4,000. The amount thus expended annually by the state is $436,000, and, in addition, special appropriations for improvement are made at every session, amounting, in 1907, to $51,200. All the institutions are admirably but economically managed and are among the chief glories of the state.

Agriculture.-From its beginnings the chief economic interest of the state has been agriculture, and, in consequence, the government, at a very early date, began a system of reports designed to assist the farmers in improving agricultural conditions. The constitution of 1868 first provided for an agricultural bureau under the secretary of state. The convention of 1875 amended this, and in 1877 the legislature organized the department of agriculture in its present form under the direction of a commissioner. An idea of its activity may be gained from the various divisions of the department. Among them are chemistry, bacteriology, veterinary, entomology, immigration and exhibits, and museum. Farmers' institutes are held under the auspices of the department in various parts of the state, and the subject of good roads is being presented to the people in a convincing way. The department has charge of the inspection of fertilizers, cotton-seed meal and commercial feeds. There is also pure food inspection. Bulletins are published monthly which disseminate the results of the department's scientific activity.

Other Departments.-Other state departments which have been created in recent years are those of labor and statistics and insurance. The department of public instruction has been greatly enlarged. and strengthened, and will be discussed under the head of Educational Development.

Before the war the state had a geologist, but as organized at present the North Carolina geological survey dates from 1891, and a most effective work has been done along this line.

The activity of the state has not been entirely concentrated upon material things. Largely through the labors of Col. William L. Saunders, for many years secretary of state, the publication of the valuable Colonial Records was made possible. This series was succeeded by one of State Records, edited by Chief Justice Walter Clark. These records have opened a mine of historical material which has greatly stimulated historical study and writing in the state. Recently the legislature has created an his torical commission which has a paid secretary devoting his whole time to the collection and publication of historical material.

Educational Development.

Before the war the state of North Carolina was the foremost of the Southern states in public education. But by 1865 most of the endowment of the school system was swept away, and what remained was lost during Reconstruction. The Republicans, in 1868, elected Rev. S. S. Ashley, a carpet-bagger from Massachusetts, superintendent of public instruction. His administration of the office was costly and without any good results as far as public education was concerned, Mr. Ashley being the chief beneficiary. He was succeeded by Alexander McIver, an honest man who was greatly handicapped by the prostration of the state and a lack of interest in the question. Stephen D. Pool was elected in 1875, but was forced out by his own party the next year. The following have filled the office since : John Pool, 1876-77; John C. Scarborough, 1877-85; S. M. Vinger, 1885-93; John C. Scarborough, 1893-97; C. H. Mebane, 1897-1901; James Y. Joyner, 1902--. There was little improvement in the system during the years preceding 1897. Up to that time the office of superintendent was a political one, and the various incumbents knew little of the practical question of public education, and it was not until Mr. Mebane came into office that a trained teacher assumed control and educational revival began. The campaigns of 1898 and 1900 forced upon the Democratic party a definite educational policy, and for the first time the schools began to receive anything that approached adequate support. An enthusiastic and persistent educational campaign has been carried on ever since with most gratifying results. The system, as a whole, is better organized, the schools better equipped and managed, and the teachers better paid and better trained. Public interest has been aroused and the state is definitely committed to public education of a sort hitherto unknown in North Carolina. The appropriations from the state are increasing and the amount raised by local taxation is growing rapidly. The following figures are interesting as an illustration of what is being done in the state in an educational way:

                Teachers     Enrollment      Houses      Value Houses
1901            6,050         331,358          7,314         $1,146,000
1907          10,146         483,927          7,513           3,637,680

Prior to 1904 about $50,000 per annum was raised by local taxation. Since that time the amount has increased as follows:

Period             Amount
1904-1905   $338,414.33
1905-1906     448,774.35
1906-1907     546,131.53
Total         $1,333,320.21

In the period from 1894 to 1901 the total disbursements amounted to $6,120,263.28. From 1901 to 1908 they amounted to $12,387,578.33. Over $5,000,000 of this was spent in the two years from 1906 to 1908.

The state also assists the University of North Carolina, the North Carolina Agricultural and Mechanical College, the Normal and Industrial College, the Agricultural and Mechanical College for the Colored, and a large number of smaller institutions. The annual appropriations for these amount to about $200,000. In addition special appropriations are made almost every year, amounting, in 1907, to $220,000. The value of the plants of these institutions is about $2,500,000; the combined teaching force numbers more than 300, and about 4,000 students are in attendance.

The various denominational schools and colleges have been keeping abreast of the new educational movement. Prominent among these are Wake Forest (Baptist), Trinity (Methodist), Davidson (Presbyterian), Guilford (Friends), and Elon (Christian), with 104 teachers and 1,500 students.

Economic Development.

Industrial Development.-At the outbreak of the war between the states, manufacturing had scarcely made a beginning in North Carolina. There were many establishments it is true, 3,689 in all, but they were small and unimportant. Employment was thus given to 14,217 persons. The capital invested was $9,693,703 and the total value of the products was $16,678,698. Of the factories, 39 were devoted to the manufacture of cotton with a capital of $1,272,750 and a product valued at $1,046,047. The total number of spindles was 41,884 and of looms 761. The state was distinctly agricultural, and manufacturing may be said to have been untried. There was no conception of the possibilities of the state either as regards water power or products.

The four years of war swept away all that had been done, and the financial prostration resulting from Reconstruction prevented any general development for a number of years. But with returning prosperity the needs of the state, coupled with the success of the pioneers who had dared the experiment, led to a period of industrial development which, although much has already been accomplished, has scarcely begun. As it is North Carolina has rapidly forged to the front among the Southern states in industrial development without losing her stride in agricultural development. The growth has not been marked in the number of factories but in their size and efficiency. The so-called manufacturing establishments of 1860 have been replaced by several hundred less, but the contrast is to be seen in the matter of capital, number of employees, and the value of product. In 1900 there were 3,465 establishments with a capital of $68,"83,000, employing 72,322 wage-earners. In 1905 there were 3,272 establishments, a decrease of 193, with a capital of $141,000,639, an increase in five years of 106.5 per cent., employing 85,339 persons. The amount paid for labor increased 52.1 per cent. and the value of the products rose from $85,210,830 to $142,520,776, an increase of 67 per cent.

The leading industries of the state in the order of their importance are cotton, tobacco, lumber, flour and mill products, furniture, cotton-seed oil and cake, lumber mill products, fertilizer, leather, hosiery and knit goods, foundry and machine-shop products, and railroad shop construction. These combined have 2,299 establishments with a capital of $128,359,043, and produce 89.9 per cent. of the total for the state.

The following figures in regard to cotton, the most important of these industries, gives an idea of what is being done at the present time as well as the growth of the industry in the state:

                                           Cost of
Year       Capital           Wages and Material            Value
1870   $1,030,900             $1,146,760                 $1,345,052
1880     2,855,800               1,903,304                  2,554,482
1890   10,775,134               7,715,834                  9,563,443
1900   33,011,516             22,513,711                 28,372,798
1905   57,413,418             40,528,852                 47,254,054

The number of active spindles increased from 1,113,432, in 1900, to 2,604,444, in 190, and the number of looms from 25,469, in 1900, to 43,219, in 1905. The state now stands third in cotton manufacture and second in the manufacture of tobacco. In the latter industry the value of the product, in 1905, was $28,087,969. Relatively the industrial development of the state is interesting. In 1890 it stood as the twenty-eighth in the United States, and in 1900 it had risen to the sixteenth place, which it also held in 1905.

Agricultural Development. - The mainstay of the state up to the period of industrial development was agriculture, and it cannot be said with any truth that agriculture has suffered with the increased industrial activity which has come to the state; rather has it benefited. The years of greatest industrial growth have been these in which agriculture was most profitable. In 1900 there were in the state 224,637 farms valued at $194,655,920, and the value of agricultural products was $69,082,556. Since that time values have greatly increased both as to farms and products. While the gross value of manufactures greatly exceeds that of agricultural products, the net value of the latter is far larger, and it will be many years before North Carolina can be called anything but an agricultural state.

Of the staple products corn is the most valuable, with cotton second and tobacco third. Truck farming is estimated to bring in many millions annually and is increasing very rapidly. Improved methods are revolutionizing farming in the state and the diversity of products renders the future very bright. North Carolina now stands fourteenth in rank in the United States and third in the South.

One of the most hopeful things about the situation in the state is the increase in the number of farms. This is assisting in the settlement of the problem of labor, which, however, is still acute. To remedy this persistent efforts are being made by the state and by individuals and corporations to encourage immigration, and this is beginning to meet with some success. This is particularly so in the East near `'Wilmington, and the example set there will probably soon be followed in other portions of the state.

Other Factors in Economic Development. - The state is very rich in minerals, but so far they have not been fully developed. But the value of mineral products is increasing and in 1906 amounted to $3,062,847. Another source of wealth is the fisheries on the coast, which produced $1,739,661.

Wealth, Debt and Taxation. - The estimated true wealth of the state is over $1,000,000,000. The assessed valuation is $488,662,568. In 1860 the assessed valuation of all property was $358,739,795. The population of the state is 2,086,912, compared to 992,667 in 1860, and the per capita wealth is thus $420, compared to $361 in 1860. The state debt is $6,873,450, and the town and county debt $8,593,180. The rate of taxation is very low, being only $0.52 per $100 of real valuation and $115 per $100 of assessed valuation. This is lower than in any other Southern state.

In this connection mention must be made of certain factors in production. The railroads of the state have been, in the main, in a prosperous condition. The state has abandoned any part in the management of the railroads in which it owns stock and has leased them out to corporations. The mileage in the state has increased from about 940, in 1860, to 4,196 at the present time. Active construction is still going on, and the steady development of the state leads to the belief that the era of construction is not nearing an end.

The banking business of the state is on a firm foundation, as was evidenced by their bearing the panic of 1907 with apparently little difficulty. There are now 297 state banks with a capital of $7,421,373, and sixty-seven National banks with a capital of $6,535,000.

Other corporations such as insurance companies, both life and fire, and building and loan associations are very numerous and apparently very prosperous.

In the foregoing pages much- has been said of the material development of the state within a certain period. It is a wonderful story of success against great odds, the story of a grim determination to succeed in the rehabilitation of the state. It has been the custom in the South in the past to speak much of the glories of the ante-bellum South, and to compare the present to it in a most unfavorable way. The time for that has passed. Viewed from a material or from an intellectual standpoint, North Carolina of to-day has surpassed the North Carolina of 1860. And the struggle for survival has produced a new type of citizenship superior to the old, if less productive of men who stood head and shoulders above their fellows. To-day is the era of the business man, calm, conservative and clear-headed, who carries into all the relations of life the same activity and determination which have rescued the state from the degradation of Reconstruction and the despair of economic prostration. The door of opportunity stands open to-day to every man as never before, and never did merit and personal worth so count in the struggle for success. For many years North Carolina was likened to Rip Van Winkle, and with good cause. But with awakening has come a giant's strength, which is being employed in the creation of a new life and a new civilization.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Appleton: Annual Cyclopcedia (1861-1902); Hamilton: Reconstruction in North Carolina (Raleigh, 1906); Laws of North Carolina (1865-1907); Legislative Documents of North Carolina (18651907); United States Census Reports (1860-1905).

JOSEPH GREGOIRE DE ROULHAC HAMILTON,
Alumni Professor of History, University of North Carolina.


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