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NORTH AMERICA comprehends all that part of the western continent which lies north of the Ifthmus of Darien, extending north and fouth from about the 10th degree north latitude to the north pole; and east and west from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, between the 45th and 165th degrees weft longitude from London. Beyond the 70th degree N. Lat. few discoveries have been made. In July 1779, Capt. Cook proceeded as far as lat. 71°, when he came to a folid body of ice extending from continent to continent.

BAYS, SOUNDS, STRAITS AND ISLANDS.-Of these (except those in the United States, which we shall defcribe under that head) we know little more than their names. Baffin's Bay, lying between the 70th and Both degrees N. Lat. is the largest and most northern, that has yet been difcovered in North America. It opens into the Atlantic ocean through Baffin's and Davis's Straits, between Cape Chidley, on the Labrador coaft, and Cape Farewell. It communicates with Hudfon's Bay to the fouth, through a cluster of iflands. In this capacious bay or gulph is James Ifland, the fouth point of which is called Cape Bedford; and the fmaller islands of Waygate and Disko. Davis's Straits separate Greenland from the American continent, and are between Cape Walfingham, on James Ifland, and South Bay in Greenland, where they are about 60 leagues broad, and extend from the 67th to the 71ft degrees of latitude above Disko island. The moft fouthern point of Greenland is called Cape Farewell.

Hudfon's Bay took its name from Henry Hudson, who discovered it in 1610. It lies between 51 and 69 degrees of north latitude. The eastern boundary of the Bay is Terra de Labrador; the northern part has a ftraight coaft, facing the bay, guarded with a line of ifles innumerable. A vaft bay, called the Archiwinnipy Sea, lies within it, and opens into Hudfon's Bay, by means of gulph Hazard, through which the Beluga whales pafs in great numbers. The entrance of the bay, from the Atlantic ocean, after leaving, to the north, Cape Farewell and Davis's Straits, is between Refolution ifles on the north, and Button's ifles, on the Labrador coaft, to the south, forming the eastern extremity of Hudfon's Straits.


The coafts are very high, rocky and rugged at top; in fome places precipitous, but fometimes exhibit extenfive beaches. The islands of Salisbury, Nottingham, and Digges are very lofty and naked. The depth of water in the middle of the bay is 140 fathoms. From Cape Churchill to the fouth end of the bay are regular foundings; near the fhore, fhallow, with muddy or sandy bottom. To the northward of Churchill, the foundings are irregular, the bottom rocky, and in some parts the rocks appear above the furface at low water.

James's Bay lies at the bottom, or most fouthern part of Hudson's Bay, with which it communicates, and divides New Britain from South Wales. To the northwestward of Hudfon's Bay is an extenfive chain of lakes, among which is Lake Menichlich, lat. 61°, long. 105° W. North of this is Lake Dobount, to the northward of which lies the extensive country of the northern Indians. Weft of these lakes, between the latitudes of 60 and 66 degrees, after paffing a large cluster of unnamed lakes, lies the lake or fea Arathapefcow, whofe fouthern fhores are inhabited by the Arathapefcow Indians. North of this, and near the Arctic circle, is Lake Edlande, around which live the Dog ribbed Indians. Further north is Buffaloe lake, near which, is Copper Mine river, in lat. 72° N. and long. 119° W. of Greenwich. The Copper Mine Indians inhabit this country.

Between Copper Mine river, which, according to Mr. Herne, empties into the Northern fea, where the tide rifes 12 or 14 feet, and which in its whole course is encumbered with fhoals and falls, and the North-west coaft of America, is an extenfive tract of unexplored country. As you descend from north to fouth on the western coast of America, just south of the Arctic circle, you come to Cape Prince of Wales, opposite East Cape on the eaftern continent; and here the two continents approach nearest to each other. Proceeding fouthward you pass Norton Sound, Cape Stephen's, Shoalnefs, Bristol Bay, Prince William's Sound, Cook's River, Admiralty Bay, and Port Mulgrave, Nootka Sound, &c. From Nootka Sound proceeding fouth, you pafs the unexplored country of New Albion, thence to California, and New Mexico.


THE vaft tract of country, bounded weft by the Pacific Ocean, south and eaft by California, New Mexico, and Louisiana-the United States, Canada and the Atlantic Ocean, and extending as far north as the country is habitable (a few scattered English, French, and some other European fettlements excepted) is inhabited wholly by various nations and tribes of Indians. The Indians alfo poffefs large tracts of country within the Spanish, American and British dominions. Those parts of North America not inhabited by Indians, belong, if we include Greenland, to Denmark, Great Britain, the American States, and Spain. Spain claims Eaft and Weft Florida, and all weft of the Miffiffippi, and fouth of the northern boundaries of Louisiana, New Mexico and California. Great Britain claims all the country inhabited by Europeans, lying north and eaft of the United States, except Greenland, which belongs to Denmark. The remaining part is the territory of the Fifteen United States. The particular Provinces and States, are exhibited in the following table:


Number of

Belonging to.

United States of America,

Denm. Span. Provin. British Provinces.

Countries, Provinces,
and States.

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Chief Townse
Windsor, Rutland


141,885 Portsmouth, Concord

387,787 Boston, Salem, Newbury Port
96,540 Portland, Hallowell

68,825 Newport, Providence
237,946 New Haven, Hartford
340,120 New York, Albany
184,139 Trenton, Burlington, Brunswick
434,373 Philadelphia, Lancaster

59,094 Dover, Wilmington, Newcastle 319,728 Annapolis, Baltimore

747,610 Richmond, Petersburgh, Norfolk 73,677 Lexington

393,751 Newbern, Edenton, Halifax

249,073 Charleston, Columbia
82,548 Savannah, Augufta

35,691 Abingdon


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Length 1250
Breadth 1040



31° and 46° North Latitude.

8° E. and 24° W. Long. from Philadelphia. 64° and 969 W. Longitude from London.



BOUNDED north and eaft by British America, or the provinces of Upper and Lower Canada, and New Brunswick; foutheast, by the Atlantic Ocean; fouth, by Eaft and Weft Forida; weft, by the river Mississippi. In the treaty of peace, concluded in 1783, the limits of the American United States are more particularly defined in the words following: "And that all difputes which might arise in future on the subject of the boundaries of the faid United States may be prevented, it is hereby agreed and declared, that the following are and fhall be their boundaries, viz. From the north-weft angle of Nova-Scotia, viz. That angle which is formed by a line drawn due north from the fource of St. Croix River to the Highlands, along the faid Highlands, which divide thofe rivers that empty them felves into the river St. Lawrence, from thofe which fall into the Atlantic Ocean, to the north-westernmoft head of Connecticut river; thence down along the middle of that river to the forty-fifth degree of north latitude; from thence by a line due weft on the faid latitude, until it ftrikes the river Iroquois or Cataraquy; thence along the middle of the faid river into Lake Ontario, through the middle of the faid Lake, until it ftrikes the communication by water between that lake and Lake Erie; thence along the middle of the, faid communication into Lake Erie, through the middle of the faid lake, until it arrives at the water communication between that lake and Lake Huron; thence through the middle of the said lake to the water communication between that lake and Lake Superior; thence through Lake Superior northward of the Ifles Royal and Philipeaux to the Long Lake; thence through the middle of the faid Long Lake, and the water communication between it and the Lake of the Woods to the faid Lake of the Woods; thence through the said lake to the most northwestern point thereof, and from thence, on a due weft course, to the River Miffiffippi; thence by a line to be drawn along the middle of the faid River Miffiffippi, until it fhall interfect the northernmost part of the thirty-first degree of north latitude. South, by a line to be drawn due caft from the determination of the line laft mentioned, in the latitude of thirty

thirty-one degrees north of the equator, to the middle of the River Apalachicola, or Catahouche; thence along the middle thereof to its junction with the Flint River; thence ftrait to the head of St. Mary's River; and thence down along the middle of St. Mary's River to the Atlantic Ocean; east, by a line to be drawn along the middle of the River St. Croix, from its mouth in the Bay of Fundy, to its fource; and from its fource directly north, to the aforefaid Highlands, which divide the rivers that fall into the Atlantic Ocean, ftom thofe which fall into the River St. Lawrence, comprehending all iflands within twenty leagues of any part of the shores of the United States, and lying between lines to be drawn due east from the points where the aforefaid boundaries between Nova-Scotia on the one part, and Eaft-Florida on the other, fhall refpectively touch the Bay of Fundy and the Atlantic Ocean, excepting fuch islands as now are, or heretofore have been, within the limits of the faid province of Nova-Scotia."

The following calculations were made from actual measurement of the best maps, by THOMAS HUTCHINS, geographer to the United States.

The territory of the United States contains by computation a million of fquare miles, in which are 640,000,000 of acres 51,000,000

Deduct for water

Acres of land in the United States,


That part of the United States comprehended between the west boundary line of Pennsylvania on the east, the boundary line between GreatBritain and the United States, extending from the river St. Croix to the north-west extremity of the Lake of the woods on the north, the river Miffiffippi, to the mouth of the Ohio on the west, and the river Ohio on the fouth to the aforementioned bounds of Pennsylvania, contains by computation about four hundred and eleven thousand fquare miles, in which are 263,040,000 acres 43,040,000

Deduct for water

of To be order Congrefs, } when purchased of the Indians.

220,000,000 of acres.

The whole of this immenfe extent of unappropriated weftern territory, containing as above ftated, 220,000,000 of acres, and feveral large. tracts fouth of the Ohio*, have been, by the ceffion of fome of the

* Ceded by North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia, with certain refervation for the Indians and other purposes, as will be mentioned hereafter.


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