Cotton Belt

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Cotton Belt,

former agricultural region of the SE United States where cotton was the main cash crop throughout the 19th and much of the 20th cent. Located on the Atlantic and Gulf coastal plains and on the Piedmont upland, it extended through North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, W Tennessee, E Arkansas, Louisiana, E Texas, and S Oklahoma, and also into small areas of SE Missouri, SW Kentucky, N Florida, and SE Virginia. Cotton is still grown in certain parts of the region but has ceased to be the dominant crop. The intensive production of corn, wheat, soybeans, peanuts, beans, and livestock has largely replaced cotton. Commercial timber production is also widespread on many former cotton plantations. Until the invention of the cotton gin in 1793, the Cotton Belt was confined to the coastal areas of South Carolina and Georgia; by the mid-1800s, it extended from S Virginia to E Texas. The belt's climatic conditions allowed cotton to thrive, but post–Civil War reforms, soil depletion, and the boll weevil (a type of beetle that eats cotton) combined to push cotton west. Today large quantities of cotton also are grown are irrigated land in the Southwest—W Texas, S New Mexico, S Arizona, and S California (see Black BeltBlack Belt,
term applied to several areas of Mississippi and Alabama, the heart of the Old South, which are characterized by black soil and excellent cotton-growing conditions. The Black Belt area was historically important as the nation's main cotton producer in the mid-1800s.
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; Imperial ValleyImperial Valley,
fertile region in the Colorado Desert, SE Calif., extending S into NW Mexico. Once part of the Gulf of California, most of the region is below sea level; its lowest point is −232 ft (−71 m) at the southern shore of the Salton Sea. Receiving only c.
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). The dryness of those areas makes it easier to control insect pests. Texas, Mississippi, Georgia, and Arkansas are the leading producers of the old cotton belt; California ranks after Texas nationally.


See G. C. Fite, Cotton Fields No More: Southern Agriculture, 1865–1980 (1984); A. Burton, The Rise and Fall of King Cotton (1985).

References in periodicals archive ?
It was the second time this month that DART board members had heatedly debated plans to take on nearly $1 billion in debt for the Cotton Belt line.
Dr Rani Devi said that Sirsa borders Punjabs Bhatinda district, where unchecked use of pesticides in the cotton belt has led to widespread deaths triggered by cancer.
Now days it is used in almost 85 percent of Pakistan's cotton belt.
But taking an average is misleading because most suicides in India are in the cotton belt.
Cotton Belt (Bradley 1995), have been encouraging enough to warrant further evaluation and refinement of conservation tillage systems in California.
The reniform nematode (Rotylenchulus reniformis) is limited to warmer regions of the Cotton Belt, but its range is expanding.
The material required for procedure is two bullock carts, two strong cotton ropes five metre length and at least one inch diameter, if possible cotton belt of one feet width may be used and minimum of six persons.
Some of the more spectacular sights to see include the Vetro Glassblowing Studio and Gallery, located in the historic Cotton Belt Depot District.
Cotton commodity prices seem set to rise sharply after a tropical storm hit the US cotton belt this month, threatening to rot seed capsules before they were picked.
2008) quantified the levels of both Cry1Ac and Cry1F in WideStrike[TM] cotton grown in several locations in the southern cotton belt and found that Cry1F accumulates in leaves and fruiting forms, with the exception of flowers, while Cry1Ac decreased in terminals and fruiting forms as the season progressed.
A history of transportation in the eastern Cotton Belt to 1860.