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The Sub-Tropic Agricultural Region 817

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THE SUB-TROPIC AGRICULTURAL REGION 817. A mountain with only one side.— In southeastern Brazil, on a corner of the low plateau, is the sub-tropic region which has long furnished most of the coffee that is used throughout the world. The people on the deck of a coffee ship steaming from Rio de Janeiro to Santos can often see, near the shore, a high mountain covered with dark green forest. In a long distance this unbroken mountainside has only one place where a railroad climbs it, and that is at Santos, where a double-track railroad connects sea shore with interior. As we go up this railroad, we are surprised to find that it is almost as steep as a flight of stairs. The cars are pulled up by cables, which are run by great stationary engines. The cables pull the trains from power house to power house. As the car is pulled up and up the mountain, to a height of nearly half a mile above the level of the sea, one may catch wonderful glimpses of the sea through the forests that overhang the track.

On reaching the top, we are surprised to find that we have climbed a one-sided moun tain, for the other side does not decline, but stretches away in a plateau to the westward.

(Sec. 272.) In some places the land is quite level; else where it is as beautifully rolling as the Piedmont of Virginia. (Secs. 259.) The train finally brings us to Sao Paulo, a city larger than New Orleans. In the United States no city without water transpor tation has grown so large. Sao Paulo is the capital of a rich state, and the trade center of a prosperous dis trict. Sao Paulo also has many people, and much bus iness that would naturally be in the port of Santos if the climate there were as cool as that of New York or of London. Sao Paulo has fine streets, trolley cars, and many factories making boots and shoes, and weaving cloth from cotton, wool, and jute. Nearly all of the coal used in Brazil must come from Europe and the United States; waterfalls furnish power for the machinery in many Sao Paulo factories, for trolley cars, and for lighting the streets. Sao Paulo is sometimes called an electric city. White people wearing clothes like our own go to and fro as in any American city. We might think we were in the United States if we did not listen to the people's talk. What is their language? (Sec. 790.) Find the place near the coast of Brazil that is the same distance from the equator as the tip of the Florida peninsula. This

Brazilian region is cooler than Cuba and south Florida because it is a plateau two or three thousand feet in height. The summers are rainy and warm like those of Florida, Cuba, and Porto Rico; but the winters are cool, with little rain, and frost sometimes injures the crops, as it does in parts of Florida.

818. Coffee.—You recall (Sec. 384) that fine coffee grows in the small uplands of Porto Rico. Here in Brazil is a large upland much like that of Porto Rico. The city of Santos is the coffee capital of the world. Just as cotton has long been the chief crop of many parts of our own south, so coffee has long been the chief crop of the region inland from Rio de Janeiro and Santos. Many of the plantations are on hills, so that they have well-drained soil, as well as frost drainage. (Sec. 184.) Most of the coffee crop goes to Sao Paulo, and then down the mountain by the double-track railroad to San tos, which has better port facilities than many North American ports. How far is it from Santos to New York? I to Lisbon? If coffee is high in price, the people of Santos and Sao Paulo are prosperous, and buy many things from Europe and America. If the price of coffee is low, the people are poor, and therefore buy but little.

819. Other many years the coffee region, like our own cotton region, sold one product and bought almost every thing else: coal from England; locomotives from the United States and Belgium; oil and gasoline from the United States; clothes from Europe; flour and meat from Argentina; iron, automobiles, and sewing machines from the United States; dried codfish from Newfound land and Norway. During the World War, when trading ships were scarce, the people of this sub-tropic region began to grow large quantities of crops of which they had pre viously grown but little. In a short time the cotton output of the Brazilian state of Sao Paulo had increased sixfold, and shiploads of corn, rice, and dried beans were being exported. Then, also, this part of South America began to send canned beef to France from the new modern packing houses built in Sao Paulo and in Rio de Janeiro by men from Chicago. The cattle owners are improving their stock by bringing better breeds from Europe. This sub-tropic plateau has many undeveloped resources.

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