No. 36.
Mr. Delaplaine to Mr. Evarts.

No. 93.]

Sir: I have seen an official report of the condition of the crops about the middle of August, and I herewith append a translation of the same.

Yesterday the international fair, for the exhibition and sale of cereals, was opened in the Rotunda, being the vast edifice in the Prater where [Page 43]the universal exposition of 1873 was held. At the opening, the Chevalier de Chlumeeky, imperial-royal minister of commerce, was accidentally prevented from appearing, but was to-day present.

The assembly of producers and grain-merchants was very numerous, those from other countries among the latter being estimated at over ten thousand. It is reported that the amount of transactions exceeded all anticipation. With reference to this, an article in the Wiener Presse has the following observations:

In every case the present year’s crop as well as the cereal fair, as a reliable valuer of the same, may indicate a turning-point in the economical relations of the monarchy. The rich blessing of the harvest will introduce its enlivening operation even into the minutest channels of the economical organization, and the invigoration of the increasing number of the population of original producers, as well as the augmentation of traffic, cannot remain without an animating reaction upon other branches of production, In fact, all industrial branches already prepare for a lively season. How refreshing this is for the community, each member feels too deeply, and it seems superfluous to say it. For more than four years we languished under the ban of an unexampled crisis, and the weak hopes of improvement, wherever they seemed to bud, were always quickly strangled. In truth, it would be a beautiful proof of the proverbial good luck of Austria if in the midst of the war perplexities in a neighboring nation the accident of a rich harvest and of a fortunate position of the European market should accomplish that which a sorrowful reduction of expenses and laborious toil had not been able to accomplish. The lessons of the past years should certainly not remain without profit for the future. A conscientious self-estimate and earnest labor must further conduct the well-begun work of reconstruction, and form henceforward the inflexible basis of our economical existence. When the leader of our foreign politics shall then succeed in keeping Austria-Hungary, as hitherto, aloof from all military action, we may with confidence look forward to a more fortunate condition of our economical relations.

I have, &c.,


Official report of the condition of the crops up to the middle of August.

The crop of winter-wheat is already completed in all the grain districts, and although a large quantity of wheat has been beaten down in consequence of the repeated and in part heavy rains in July, this, as it chiefly took place shortly before the harvesting, did not do much material damage, and only in Galicia the quality of the grain suffered from the fact that the beaten-down wheat was frequently attacked with rust. Especially in Hungary is found a very superior quality, and there it has only exceptionally suffered through the rain. Moreover, this year’s wheat is remarkable for its purity from the seed of weeds, and blight is very unusual.

The quantitative results of the harvest are reported as follows;

Very good in Hungary and Croatia, in Lower Austria, Carinthia, and Salzburg, and Gorizia. Good to very good in Bohemia, Moravia, as also in Styria; good in Silesia, Bukovina, in Upper Austria, Istria, and Dalmatia; middling good in Galicia, Tyrol, and Vorarlberg, Carinthia, and Transylvania.

The rye crop in the northern provinces has resulted well. With regard to its specific weight, the rye in the western half of the empire is, according to report, superior even to wheat. In Hungary, however, the quality of the rye is on the average not so satisfactory as that of the wheat.

The quantitative results of the crop are represented as follows:

A very good crop in Bohemia, Lower Austria, Salzburg, Styria, Carinthia; good in Hungary and Croatia, Moravia, Silesia, and Bukovina, in Upper Austria, Tyrol and Vorarlberg, the coast country, and Dalmatia; middling good in Galicia and Carinthia.

The barley has everywhere remained short in the straw; however, the ears are mostly so well developed, that in general a tolerably good crop is to be hoped. From unfavorable weather during the harvest, a considerable portion of the barley lost its fine color, but actual damage, through full growth, had occurred in rare instances.

The various degrees of the harvest may, according to the reports, be estimated on the average thus:

Good to very good in Carinthia and Gorizia; good in Styria and Istria; middling good in Hungary, Lower Austria, Vorarlberg, Tyrol, Carmthia, Dalmatia; middling [Page 44]in Bohemia, Moravia, Silas Upper Austria, Bukovina; weak middling (almost bad) in Galicia.

The harvest of oats is now, with scarcely an exception, completed, and presents a good return.

Maize has made great progress during the present period. Having generally been favored by the weather it has attained a stately height and has everywhere produced ears. Its condition justifies, in the west provinces of the empire, the hope of a good crop, and in Hungary it has also materially improved.

Potatoes and beets, in the western half of the empire, are for the most part in excellent condition. In the eastern they suffer partially through drought; still, most gratifying intelligence has been received from that quarter. Potato-rot is observed, not only in Silesia and West Galicia, but also in some localities of Moravia, Lower Austria, and Gorizia.

Hops have just been plucked in Bohemia, but not yet in Galicia. By Postelberg good and abundant and perfect umbels are found, while in Wittingau the harvest is estimated at only one-half, Good crops are promised in Galicia, Upper and Lower Austria.

Wine has lately made satisfactory progress. In consequence of repeated rains various evils have occurred. Especially the grape fungus (oidium) has affected the vines, and has not only extended into Southern Tyrol, Istria, and Dalmatia, but also into Vorarlberg, Gorizia, and Croatia. Moreover, the “Brenner,” which has prevailed for some past months in Southern Tyrol has planted itself in Gorizia. Further, in Dalmatia the “tortrix,” and in Istria; the “black rot,” has appeared; finally, the decay of single grapes occasionally shows itself.

In the last-named provinces the anticipated hopes of an abundant vintage may be somewhat diminished. In Lower Austria and Styria, however, the prospects of a good middling vintage are maintained, and in Hungary the grapes, where not overabundant, show a very good development.