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Fifty Principal Nations of the World

(Actual Size: 6-7/8" x 11-1/8" - shown approx. 1/2 scale)
CLICK on any map to see the corresponding card as it was originally issued.

Mexico, Newfoundland, Spain, Sandwich Islands

(facing page)


       MEXICO (Aztec, Mexilli, a name of the tutelary deity), a federal republic of N. America, is bounded on the N. by the U.S., and by Guatemala and Honduras on the South.
       The heart of the country, to the extent of three-fifths, is occupied by the plateau of Anahuac, which has an elevation of from 6,000 to 8,000 feet above the sea, and is skirted by semi-tropical terrace lands (a region of perpetual spring), and by the luxuriantly productive lower lands which stretch inland 20 or 30 miles from the coast to the base of the mountains, and which with a W. Indian climate, are rendered almost uninhabitable by the prevalence of yellow fever. Mexico is singularly destitute of navigable rivers.
       It is divided into 27 States, 2 Territories and the Federal District, each of which has a right to manage its own local affairs, while the whole are bound together in one body politic by fundamental and constitutional laws. The legislative power is vested in a Congress consisting of a House of Representatives and a Senate, and the executive in a President.
       Area 772,000 square miles. Estimated population 10,000,000, the majority being engaged in agriculture. Large numbers of cattle are raised for the United States. The mineral wealth is enormous and there are upwards of 990 mining enterprises, employing upwards of 700,000 men. The value of precious metals exported 1889-90 was $62,499,388. Other exports are coffee, hides and skins, woods, vanilla, copper, lead, gum, tobacco, cochineal, indigo and India rubber.


      NEWFOUNDLAND (F, "Terre-Neuve"), a large island at the mouth of the Gulf of St. Lawrence; and Labrador, its dependency, is the most easterly part of the Continent of North America. The coast of Newfoundland is rugged, especially on the southwest, where the coast-range reaches an elevation of nearly 2,000 feet. The hills attain their summit within a few miles of the salt water and then spread out into an undulating country, consisting largely of barrens and marshes, and intersected by numerous rivers and lakes.
      Area 40,200 square miles. Population in 1884--island, 193,122; Labrador, 4,210; total 197,332, of whom 60,419 were engaged in the fisheries, 1,685 were farmers, 3,628 mechanics, and 3,360 miners. The climate is cold and bleak on the coast but milder inland. Capital, St. Johns.
      Newfoundland is the oldest British Colony, having been taken possession of for Queen Elizabeth, 5th August, 1583, and first settled 1621. The government is administered by a Governor, assisted by an Executive Council, a Legislative Council and a House of Assembly.
      The chief employments are the fishing for cod and seal on the shores of Newfoundland or Labrador; the manufacture of oils, mining and wood cutting. Besides the Shore Fishery, there is an extensive 'Bank Fishery' on a tract (S.E. of N.) about 600 miles by 200, over a plateau from 20 to 108 fathoms below the sea. The French occupy a narrow strip of coast on the W., N. and E. sides, for the purpose of curing fish. The leading exports are fish (chiefly cod), cod and seal oil, preserved lobster, sealskins an copper ore.


      SPAIN, a Kingdom of S.W. Europe, bounded N. by the Bay of Biscay and the Pyrenees, E. by the Mediterranean, S. by the Mediterranean, the Straits of Gibraltar and the Atlantic, and W. by Portugal and the Atlantic.
      By decree of June 30, 1876, Spain is a Constitutional Monarchy. The legislative power is vested in the King and a Cortes of two houses, a Senate and a Congress.
      The Kingdom is divided into 49 provinces. Area, 196,081 square miles; population, 16,835,506.
      Spain may be described generally as a highland country, the centre of which is occupied by a great plateau of 42,500 square miles.
      The climate on S. E. coast of the Mediterranean has an average temperature of 68 F.; that of the highest mountain land answers to that of the polar zone, and that of the rest of the country to the S. temperate.
      Wheat, rye, barley, maize, esparto, flax, hemp and pulse are the leading crops. The vine is the most important culture. The total export of Spanish wines in 1889 amounted to 190,613,000 gallons. Large quantities of oranges, raisins, grapes, nuts and olives are also exported. Iron, quicksilver, lead and copper are the most important minerals. Other exports are cork, wool and cattle.
      The Colonies of Spain are Cuba and Porto Rico in America, the Philippine and other islands in Asia, and Rio de Oro, Adrar and Fernando Po in Africa, with a total area of 406,903 square miles and a population of 12,123,743.
      The Rock of Gibraltar, in the Spanish province of Andalusia, is a British possession.


      THE SANDWICH or HAWAIIAN ISLANDS, a group situated in the N. Pacific, 2100 miles from San Francisco and 3400 miles from Japan. They number twelve, of which eight are inhabited, the remainder being little more than large rocks. The whole group is of volcanic origin. The island of Hawaii contains two immense volcanoes, Mauna Loa (13,760 feet) and Kilauea (3970 feet), whose craters are respectively 6 and 9 miles in circumference, and are constantly active. The climate is mild and equable, and the soil highly fertile and productive. The bread-fruit, cocoa nut, banana and tara are indigenous, and every tropical crop can be successfully reared. Sheep, cattle and horses thrive well and are now very numerous. Sugar and rice are the staple industries, while coffee, hides, bananas and wool are also exported.
      The Sandwich Islands were practically discovered on 19th January, 1778, by Captain Cook, who was killed by the natives of Hawaii on the following year. He named them the Sandwich Islands after the Earl of Sandwich, First Lord of the Admiralty. Owing to missionary labors, the islands are now wholly Christian.
      The government is a Constitutional Monarchy. In 1887 a new constitution was granted, by which the executive power is vested in the Sovereign and his Cabinet.
      The total area of the islands is 6677 square miles, and the population according to census of 1884, 80,578, of whom 40,014 were natives and 17,939 Chinese, The native population , which is closely allied to the Maoris of New Zealand, is rapidly decreasing and the foreign population increasing.