« 上一頁繼續 »
New York alone. Of the other States, 42 have less than half the population or wealth of Pennsylvania, while 21 have less than one fifth of its population. Only three States approach it in importance. The area is nearly as great as that of England, and is one eightieth of that of the United States. The population by the census of 1910 is 7,665,111. Under the Apportionment Act of 1911 Pennsylvania is entitled to 38 Electoral votes.
Boundaries.-The State of Pennsylvania is bounded on the north by Lake Erie and New York; on the east by New York and New Jersey, from which it is separated by the Delaware River; on the south by Delaware, Maryland, and West Virginia; and on the west by West Virginia and Ohio. The State is nearly rectangular in outline. Its northern and southern boundaries are parallels of latitude 158 miles apart, broken only by the angle in Erie county, and the scallop in the southeastern corner caused by the Circle of Newcastle. The western boundary is a meridian line. The eastern boundary is the Delaware River, which forms along the border of the State two symmetrical zigzags alternately southcastward and southwestward. The extreme length of the State is 300 miles; the average length 286 miles; and the area 45,126 square miles. The State lies between latitude 39° 43' N. and 42° N., except that the triangle extends north to 42° 15'. In longitude it extends from 74° 40' W. to 80° 36' W. The boundaries as marked by monuments are only approximations to the true parallels and meridians. Pennsylvania has a shore line of 40 miles on Lake Erie.
Charter Boundaries.—The boundaries of Pennsylvania, as was the case with each of the original States, were fixed by royal charter. The king and his advisers were alike ignorant of the geography of America, and the charters as
granted made hopeless confusion of colonial boundaries, and led to disputes between the States afterwards. The charter of 1681 bounded the province granted to William Penn as follows:
“On the East by Delaware River, from twelve miles' distance, Northwarde of New Castle towne unto the beginning of the three and fortieth degree of Northerne latitude, if the said River doth extend soe farre Northwards; but if the said River shall not extend soe farre Northward, then by the said River so farr as it doth extend, and from the head of the said River the Easterne Bounds are to bee determined by a Meridian Line, to bee drawne from the head of the said River unto the said three and fortieth degree; the said lands to extend Westwards five degrees in longitude, to bee computed from the said Eastern Bounds, and the said lands to bee bounded on the North by the beginning of the three and fortieth degree of Northerne latitude, and on the South by a Circle drawne at twelve miles distance from New Castle northwards and westwards unto the beginning of the fortieth degree of Northerne latitude; and then by a straight Line westwards, to the limit of longitude above mentioned.”
This grant is much more exact in its language than were many of the royal charters, still it contains several terms hard to understand. The circle mentioned does not cross at any point'the thirty-ninth parallel—the beginning of the fortieth degree of latitude. This Circle of Newcastle gives Delaware the rounded northern boundary familiar to schoolchildren, by limiting the boundary of this part of Pennsylvania by part of the circumference of a circle twenty-four miles in diameter, whose center is the steeple of the old courthouse at Newcastle, Delaware.
Penn enjoyed his new possession in peace but a short time. A dispute arose in regard to the meaning of the term “the beginning of the fortieth degree of northern latitude.” Lord Baltimore claimed that the fortieth parallel was the northern limit of Maryland; while Penn claimed that the term referred to the thirty-ninth parallel. Had the claims urged by Lord Baltimore prevailed, Philadelphia would have been left outside the colony of Pennsylvania.
In his petition to the king, Penn describes the country as “a tract of land in America lying north of Maryland, on the east bounded by the Delaware river, on the west limited as Maryland is, and northward to extend as far as plantable.”
It will suffice to say that through confusion in the charters, parts of Pennsylvania have been claimed by Virginia, Maryland, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. Only after long and bitter disputes were the various boundaries located.
If all the controversies between Pennsylvania and other States had been decided against our Commonwealth, it would have been reduced to an insignificant strip of land containing neither Philadelphia nor Pittsburg.
Mason and Dixon's Line.—The southern boundary line as determined by Mason and Dixon in 1763-67 is historic. In 1760 a final compromise with Maryland had been reached. At last the real dividing line was to be run; but, weary of waiting on local surveyors, who had taken three years to find the boundary between Delaware and Maryland, Lord Baltimore and the Penns secured the services of Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon, distinguished English surveyors, and in 1763 they entered on their task of running the boundaries.
They came over with a small army of rodmen, axmen, etc., verified the boundary between Delaware and Maryland,
and by 1767 had carried the famous Mason and Dixon Line through two hundred and forty-four miles of wilderness. The surveyors marked off the line with monuments of stone along the eastern part, and with mounds of earth and stone in the western part. The first stone, that is, the eastern stone of the east and west line, is marked with an M on two of its sides, and P on the other two. At every fifth mile a stone monument, known as a “Crown Stone,” was set up bearing upon its north face the arms of Penn, and on the south the arms of Lord Baltimore. The intermediate miles were
marked with stones having P on one side and M on the other. As the two intrepid surveyors proceeded in their work on the line, the Indians, suspicious of this star-gazing folly, stopped them again and again. About twenty miles remained to be completed, but the Indian guides and interpreters, who had been engaged to quiet the Indians along the way, deserted, and the Great “Six Nations” entered strenuous objections to the invasion of their hunting grounds. At last Mason and Dixon were obliged to return, after reaching the Warrior branch Indian trail; and this remained the end of the line for many years. The line was completed in 1784 by David Rittenhouse.
No river, or mountain chain, or other natural feature