Full text: Modern business geography

Modern Business Geography 
Germany manufactures great quantities of iron and steel products, 
cotton, woolen, and silk goods, chemicals, and beet sugar. The iron 
and steel products are made near the coal mines that stretch across 
south central Germany from west to east. Essen on the Ruhr, near 
the Rhine, is the center of a great iron and steel district. It is the 
home of the vast Krupp steel works, which make all kinds of steel 
products for railroads, ships, engines, and mills, and were formerly 
famed as the greatest munitions plant in the world. 
This same district supplies coal for leading textile centers — for 
making silk at Crefeld, woolen goods at Aachen (Aix-la-Chapelle), 
woolen, cotton, and linen goods at Elberfeld and Barmen. Steel ships 
are built at the ports of Stettin and Kiel on the Baltic, and at Ham- 
burg on the River Elbe. 
Why Germany developed her chemical manufactures. Germany 
is famous for her skill in applying the science learned in schools and 
universities to the work of manufacturing. Before the World War, 
Germany was far ahead of any other country in the chemical indus- 
tries. This happened partly because numerous chemists who had been 
trained in the universities were employed to discover methods of 
cheaply producing the chemicals needed for such things as dyes, fer- 
tilizers, drugs, perfumes, and artificial camphor. For instance, Ger- 
man chemists have produced dyes of hundreds of hues out of tar that 
was formerly wasted. This same tar supplies carbolic acid and many 
The chemical plants are located chiefly at Stassfurt in central 
Germany, which lies over a bed of * potash salts.” Elberfeld and 
Barmen, near the western coal mines, and Frankfurt and Mannheim, in 
the upper Rhine valley, are also great chemical centers. 
One of the greatest advantages that Germany has derived from her 
chemists is the ability to extract sugar from beets at low cost. Her 
scientific farmer has done his part by developing sugar beets that con- 
tain twice the amount of sugar formerly obtained from the vegetable. 
As a result, Germany before the war manufactured more sugar than 
any other country. Beet sugar is manufactured in hundreds of fac- 
tories scattered over northern Germany, where the soil and climate 
permit sugar beets to grow profitably. After harvesting the beets, 
many farmers become workers in the factories. Germany supplies 
all the sugar that she needs herself and has great quantities of sugar 
for export.

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