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´╗┐Title: British Highways And Byways From A Motor Car - Being A Record Of A Five Thousand Mile Tour In England, - Wales And Scotland
Author: Murphy, Thomas Dowler, 1866-1928
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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From Water Color by B. McGuinness.]

British Highways
and Byways
From a Motor Car



Thos. D. Murphy

With Sixteen Illustrations in Colour and Thirty-two Duogravures From
Photographs; Also Two Descriptive Maps.

L.C. Page & Company

_Copyright_, 1908

_All rights reserved_


In this chronicle of a summer's motoring in Britain I have not attempted
a guide-book in any sense, yet the maps, together with the comments on
highways, towns, and country, should be of some value even in that
capacity. I hope, however, that the book, with its many illustrations
and its record of visits to out-of-the way places, may be acceptable to
those who may desire to tour Britain by rail or cycle as well as by
motor car. Nor may it be entirely uninteresting to those who may not
expect to visit the country in person but desire to learn more of it and
its people. Although our journey did not follow the beaten paths of
British touring, and while a motor car affords the most satisfactory
means of reaching most of the places described, the great majority of
these places are accessible by rail, supplemented in some cases by a
walk or drive. A glance at the maps will indicate the large scope of
country covered and the location of most places especially mentioned in
the text.

It was not a tour of cities by any means, but of the most delightful
country in the world, with its towns, villages, historic spots and
solitary ruins. Whatever the merits or demerits of the text, there can
be no question concerning the pictures. The color-plates were reproduced
from original paintings by prominent artists, some of the pictures
having been exhibited in the London Royal Academy. The thirty-two
duogravures represent the very height of attainment in that process,
being reproductions of the most perfect English photographs obtainable.

January 1908.


printed from type--instead of from electrotype plates--thus giving an
opportunity for additional care in the press work, with better results
than with the ordinary book printed from plates. The publishers thought
also that some time might elapse before a second edition would be called
for. However, the unexpected happened and in less than a year a new
edition is required.

This has afforded opportunity for numerous additions and
corrections--since it was hardly possible that a book covering such a
wide scope could be entirely free from mistakes, though, fortunately,
these were mainly minor ones. I have to thank numerous readers for
helpful suggestions.

That there is a distinct field for such a book is proven by the
unexpectedly large demand for the first edition. I hope that the new and
revised edition may meet with like favor.

March 1, 1909.


    I  A FEW GENERALITIES                           1
   II  IN AND ABOUT LONDON                         11
  III  A PILGRIMAGE TO CANTERBURY                  26
   IV  A RUN THROUGH THE MIDLANDS                  40
   VI  LONDON TO LAND'S END                        80
 VIII  THROUGH BEAUTIFUL WALES                    115
   IX  CHESTER TO THE "HIELANDS"                  137
    X  THROUGH HISTORIC SCOTLAND                  156
   XI  FROM EDINBURGH TO YORKSHIRE                173
  XII  IN OLD YORKSHIRE                           190
XVIII  IN SURREY AND SUSSEX                       275
  XIX  KNOLE HOUSE AND PENSHURST                  290
   XX  SOME MIGHT-HAVE-BEENS                      299
         INDEX                                    311



HARVESTING IN HERTFORDSHIRE                      16
THE THREE SPIRES OF LICHFIELD                    48
SUNSET ON THE MOOR                               56
ROCKS OFF CORNWALL                               96
NEAR LAND'S END                                 100
ON DARTMOOR                                     104
IN GLOUCESTERSHIRE                              112
ENTRANCE TO LOCH TYNE                           144
THE PATH BY THE LOCH                            150
IN THE SCOTTISH HIGHLANDS                       160
A SURREY LANDSCAPE                              272
A BIT OF OLD ENGLAND                            300
THE CALEDONIAN COAST                            308


HADLEY CHURCH, MONKEN HADLEY                     22
CATHEDRAL, CANTERBURY                            33
THE FEATHERS HOTEL, LUDLOW                       68
A GLADE IN NEW FOREST                            88
KILCHURN CASTLE, LOCH AWE                       152
TOWN HOUSE, DUNBAR, SCOTLAND                    180
OLD COTTAGE AT COCKINGTON                       200
SOMERSBY CHURCH                                 212
A TYPICAL BYWAY                                 224
RINGWOOD CHURCH                                 260
WINDMILL NEAR ARUNDEL, SUSSEX                   274
ARUNDEL CASTLE                                  276


MAP OF ENGLAND AND WALES                        310
MAP OF SCOTLAND                                 318


From Water Color by G.F. Nicholls.]

British Highways and Byways From a Motor Car



Stratford-on-Avon stands first on the itinerary of nearly every American
who proposes to visit the historic shrines of Old England. Its
associations with Britain's immortal bard and with our own gentle
Geoffrey Crayon are not unfamiliar to the veriest layman, and no fewer
than thirty thousand pilgrims, largely from America, visit the
delightful old town each year. And who ever came away disappointed? Who,
if impervious to the charm of the place, ever dared to own it?

My first visit to Stratford-on-Avon was in the regulation fashion.
Imprisoned in a dusty and comfortless first-class apartment--first-class
is an irony in England when applied to railroad travel, a mere excuse
for charging double--we shot around the curves, the glorious
Warwickshire landscapes fleeting past in a haze or obscured at times by
the drifting smoke. Our reveries were rudely interrupted by the shriek
of the English locomotive--like an exaggerated toy whistle--and, with a
mere glimpse of town and river, we were brought sharply up to the
unattractive station of Stratford-on-Avon. We were hustled by an
officious porter into an omnibus, which rattled through the streets
until we landed at the Sign of the Red Horse; and the manner of our
departure was even the same.

Just two years later, after an exhilarating drive of two or three hours
over the broad, well-kept highway winding through the parklike fields,
fresh from May showers, between Worcester and Stratford, our motor
finally climbed a long hill, and there, stretched out before us, lay the
valley of the Avon. Far away we caught the gleam of the immortal river,
and rising from a group of splendid trees we beheld Trinity
Church--almost unique in England for its graceful combination of massive
tower and slender spire--the literary shrine of the English-speaking
world, the enchanted spot where Shakespeare sleeps. About it were
clustered the clean, tiled roofs of the charming town, set like a gem in
the Warwickshire landscape, famous as the most beautiful section of Old
England. Our car slowed to a stop, and only the subdued hum of the motor
broke the stillness as we saw Stratford-on-Avon from afar, conscious of
a beauty and sentiment that made our former visit seem commonplace

But I am not going to write of Stratford-on-Avon. Thousands have done
this before me--some of them of immortal fame. I shall not attempt to
describe or give details concerning a town that is probably visited each
year by more people than any other place of the size in the world. I am
simply striving in a few words to give the different impressions made
upon the same party who visited the town twice in a comparatively short
period, the first time by railway train and the last by motor car. If I
have anything to say of Stratford, it will come in due sequence in my

There are three ways in which a tourist may obtain a good idea of
Britain during a summer's vacation of three or four months. He may cover
most places of interest after the old manner, by railway train. This
will have to be supplemented by many and expensive carriage drives if he
wishes to see the most beautiful country and many of the most
interesting places. As Professor Goldwin Smith says, "Railways in
England do not follow the lines of beauty in very many cases," and the
opportunity afforded of really seeing England from a railway car window
is poor indeed. The tourist must keep a constant eye on the time-tables,
and in many of the more retired places he will have to spend a day when
an hour would suffice quite as well could he get away. If he travels
first-class, it is quite expensive, and the only advantage secured is
that he generally has a compartment to himself, the difference in
accommodations between first and third-class on the longer distance
trains being insignificant. But if he travels third-class, he very often
finds himself crowded into a small compartment with people in whom, to
say the least, he has nothing in common. One seldom gets the real
sentiment and beauty of a place in approaching it by railway. I am
speaking, of course, of the tourist who endeavors to crowd as much as he
can into a comparatively short time. To the one who remains several days
in a place, railroad traveling is less objectionable. My remarks
concerning railroad travel in England are made merely from the point of
comparison with a pleasure journey by motor, and having covered the
greater part of the country in both ways, I am qualified to some extent
to speak from experience.

For a young man or party of young men who are traveling through Britain
on a summer's vacation, the bicycle affords an excellent and expeditious
method of getting over the country, and offers nearly all the advantages
of the motor car, provided the rider is vigorous and expert enough to do
the wheeling without fatigue. The motor cycle is still better from this
point of view, and many thousands of them are in use on English roads,
while cyclists may be counted by the tens of thousands. But the bicycle
is out of the question for an extended tour by a party which includes
ladies. The amount of impedimenta which must be carried along, and the
many long hills which are encountered on the English roads, will put the
cycle out of the question in such cases.

In the motor car, we have the most modern and thorough means of
traversing the highways and byways of Britain in the limits of a single
summer, and it is my purpose in this book, with little pretensions to
literary style, to show how satisfactorily this may be done by a mere
layman. To the man who drives his own car and who at the outstart knows
very little about the English roads and towns, I wish to undertake to
show how in a trip of five thousand miles, occupying about fifty days,
actual traveling time, I covered much of the most beautiful country in
England and Scotland and visited a large proportion of the most
interesting and historic places in the Kingdom. I think it can be
clearly demonstrated that this method of touring will give opportunities
for enjoyment and for gaining actual knowledge of the people and country
that can hardly be attained in any other way.

The motor car affords expeditious and reasonably sure means of getting
over the country--always ready when you are ready, subservient to your
whim to visit some inaccessible old ruin, flying over the broad main
highways or winding more cautiously in the unfrequented country
byways--and is, withal, a method of locomotion to which the English
people have become tolerant if not positively friendly. Further, I am
sure it will be welcome news to many that the expense of such a trip,
under ordinary conditions, is not at all exorbitant or out of the reach
of the average well-to-do citizen.

Those who have traveled for long distances on American roads can have no
conception whatever of the delights of motor traveling on the British
highways. I think there are more bad roads in the average county, taking
the States throughout, than there are in all of the United Kingdom, and
the number of defective bridges in any county outside of the immediate
precincts of a few cities, would undoubtedly be many times greater than
in the whole of Great Britain. I am speaking, of course, of the more
traveled highways and country byways. There are roads leading into the
hilly sections that would not be practicable for motors at all, but,
fortunately, these are the very roads over which no one would care to
go. While the gradients are generally easier than in the States, there
are in many places sharp hills where the car must be kept well under
control. But the beauty of it is that in Britain one has the means of
being thoroughly warned in advance of the road conditions which he must

The maps are perfect to the smallest detail and drawn to a large scale,
showing the relative importance of all the roads; and upon them are
plainly marked the hills that are styled "dangerous." These maps were
prepared for cyclists, and many of the hills seem insignificant to a
powerful motor. However, the warning is none the less valuable, for
often other conditions requiring caution prevail, such as a dangerous
turn on a hill or a sharp descent into a village street. Then there is a
set of books, four in number, published by an Edinburgh house and
illustrated by profile plans, covering about thirty thousand miles of
road in England and Scotland. These show the exact gradients and supply
information in regard to the surface of the roads and their general
characteristics. Besides this, the "objects of interest" scattered along
any particular piece of road are given in brief--information at once so
desirable and complete as to be a revelation to an American. There are
sign-boards at nearly every crossing; only in some of the more retired
districts did we find the crossroads unmarked. With such advantages as
these, it is easily seen that a tour of Britain by a comparative
stranger is not difficult; that a chauffeur or a guide posted on the
roads is not at all necessary. The average tourist, with the exercise of
ordinary intelligence and a little patience, can get about any part of
the country without difficulty. One of the greatest troubles we found
was to strike the right road in leaving a town of considerable size, but
this was overcome by the extreme willingness of any policeman or native
to give complete information--often so much in detail as to be rather
embarrassing. The hundreds of people from whom we sought assistance in
regard to the roads were without exception most cheerful and willing
compliants, and in many places people who appeared to be substantial
citizens volunteered information when they saw us stop at the town
crossing to consult our maps. In getting about the country, little
difficulty or confusion will be experienced.

Generally speaking, the hotel accommodations in the provincial towns
throughout England and Scotland are surprisingly good. Of course there
is a spice of adventure in stopping occasionally at one of the small
wayside inns or at one of the old hostelries more famous for its
associations than for comfort, but to one who demands first-class
service and accommodations, a little of this will go a long way.
Generally it can be so planned that towns with strictly good hotel
accommodations can be reached for the night. Occasionally an unusually
comfortable and well-ordered hotel will tempt the motorist to tarry a
day or two and possibly to make excursions in the vicinity. Such hotels
we found at Chester and York, for instance. The country hotel-keeper in
Britain is waking up to the importance of motor travel. Already most of
the hotels were prepared to take care of this class of tourists, and in
many others improvements were under way. It is safe to say that in the
course of two or three years, at the farthest, there will be little to
be desired in the direction of good accommodations in the better towns.
Rates at these hotels are not low by any means--at least for the
motorist. It is generally assumed that a man who is in possession of an
automobile is able to pay his bills, and charges and fees are exacted in
accordance with this idea. There is, of course, a wide variation in this
particular, and taking it right through, the rates at the best hotels
would not be called exorbitant. The Motor Club of Great Britain and
Ireland have many especially designated hotels where the members of this
association are given a discount. These are not in every case the best
in the town, and we generally found Baedeker's Hand Book the most
reliable guide as to the relative merits of the hotels. It is a poorly
appointed hotel that does not now have a garage of some sort, and in
many cases, necessary supplies are available. Some even go so far as to
charge the storage batteries, or "accumulators," as they are always
called in Britain, and to afford facilities for the motorist to make

It goes without saying that a motor tour should be planned in advance
as carefully as possible. If one starts out in a haphazard way, it takes
him a long time to find his bearings, and much valuable time is lost.
Before crossing the water, it would be well to become posted as
thoroughly as possible on what one desires to see and to gain a general
idea of the road from the maps. Another valuable adjunct will be a
membership in the A.C.A. or a letter from the American motor
associations, with an introduction to the Secretary of the Motor Union
of Great Britain and Ireland. In this manner can be secured much
valuable information as to the main traveled routes; but after all, if
the tourist is going to get the most out of his trip, he will have to
come down to a careful study of the country and depend partly on the
guide-books but more upon his own knowledge of the historical and
literary landmarks throughout the Kingdom.



London occurs to the average tourist as the center from which his
travels in the Kingdom will radiate, and this idea, from many points of
view, is logically correct. Around the city cluster innumerable literary
and historic associations, and the points of special interest lying
within easy reach will outnumber those in any section of similar extent
in the entire country. If one purposes to make the tour by rail, London
is pre-eminently the center from which to start and to which one will
return at various times in his travels. All the principal railways lead
to the metropolis. The number of trains arriving and departing each day
greatly exceeds that of any other city in the world, and the longest
through journey in the island may be compassed between sunrise and

The motorist, however, finds a different problem confronting him in
making London his center. I had in mind the plan of visiting the famous
places of the city and immediate suburbs with the aid of my car, but it
was speedily abandoned when I found myself confronted by the actual
conditions. One attempt at carrying out this plan settled the matter
for me. The trip which I undertook would probably be one of the first to
occur to almost anybody--the drive to Hampton Court Palace, about twelve
or fifteen miles from the central part of the city. It looked easy to
start about two or three o'clock, spend a couple of hours at Hampton
Court and get back to our hotel by six. After trying out my car--which
had reached London some time ahead of me--a few times in localities
where traffic was not the heaviest, I essayed the trip without any
further knowledge of the streets than I had gained from the maps. I was
accompanied by a nervous friend from Iowa who confessed that he had been
in an automobile but once before. He had ridden with a relative through
a retired section of his native state, traversed for the first time by
an automobile, and he had quit trying to remember how many run-aways and
smash-ups were caused by the fractious horses they met on the short
journey. Visions of damage suits haunted him for months thereafter. In
our meanderings through the London streets, the fears for the other
fellow which had harassed him during his former experience, were
speedily transferred to himself. To his excited imagination, we time and
again escaped complete wreck and annihilation by a mere hair's breadth.
The route which we had taken, I learned afterwards, was one of the worst
for motoring in all London. The streets were narrow and crooked and
were packed with traffic of all kinds. Tram cars often ran along the
middle of the street, with barely room for a vehicle to pass on either
side. The huge motor busses came tearing towards us in a manner most
trying to novices, and it seemed, time after time, that the dexterity of
the drivers of these big machines was all that saved our car from being
wrecked. We obtained only the merest glimpse of Hampton Palace, and the
time which we had consumed made it apparent that if we expected to reach
our hotel that night, we must immediately retrace our way through the
wild confusion we had just passed. It began to rain, and added to the
numerous other dangers that seemed to confront us was that of "skidding"
on the slippery streets. When we finally reached our garage, I found
that in covering less than twenty-five miles, we had consumed about four
hours and we had been moving all the time. The nervous strain was a
severe one and I forthwith abandoned any plan that I had of attempting
to do London by motor car. With more knowledge and experience I would
have done better, but a local motorist, thoroughly acquainted with
London, told me that he wouldn't care to undertake the Hampton Court
trip by the route which we had traveled.

On Saturday afternoons and Sundays, the motorist may practically have
freedom of the city. He will find the streets deserted everywhere. The
heavy traffic has all ceased and the number of cabs and motor busses is
only a fraction of what it would be on business days. He will meet
comparatively few motors in the city on Sunday, even though the day be
fine, such as would throng the streets of Chicago or New York with cars.
The Englishman who goes for a drive is attracted from the city by the
many fine roads which lead in every direction to pleasure resorts. One
of the most popular runs with Londoners is the fifty miles to Brighton,
directly southward, and the number of motors passing over this highway
on fine Sundays is astonishing. I noted a report in the papers that on a
certain Sunday afternoon no less than two hundred cars passed a police
trap, and of these, thirty-five were summoned before the magistrates for
breaking the speed limit. To the average American, this run to Brighton
would not be at all attractive compared with many other roads leading
out of London, on which one would scarcely meet a motor car during the
day and would be in no danger from the machinations of the police. Of
course the places frequented by tourists are often closed on Sunday--or
at least partially so, as in the case of Windsor Castle, where one is
admitted to the grounds and court, but the state apartments, etc., are
not shown. Even the churches are closed to Sunday visitors except
during the regular services.

Within a radius of thirty miles of London, and outside its immediate
boundaries, there are numerous places well worth a visit, most of them
open either daily or at stated times. A few of such places are Harrow on
the Hill, with its famous school; Keston, with Holwood House, the home
of William Pitt; Chigwell, the scene of Dickens' "Barnaby Rudge;"
Waltham Abbey Church, founded in 1060; the home of Charles Darwin at
Downe; Epping Forest; Hampton Court; Rye House at Broxborne; Hatfield
House, the estate of the Marquis of Salisbury; Runnymede, where the
Magna Charta was signed; St. Albans, with its ancient cathedral church;
Stoke Poges Church of Gray's "Elegy" fame; Windsor Castle; Knole House,
with its magnificent galleries and furniture; Penshurst Place, the home
of the Sidneys; John Milton's cottage at Chalfont St. Giles; the ancient
town of Guildford in Surrey; Gad's Hill, Dickens' home, near Rochester;
the vicarage where Thackeray's grandfather lived and the old church
where he preached at Monken Hadley; and Whitchurch, with Handel's
original organ, is also near the last-named village. These are only a
few of the places that no one should miss. The motor car affords an
unequalled means of reaching these and other points in this vicinity;
since many are at some distance from railway stations, to go by train
would consume more time than the average tourist has at his disposal.
While we visited all the places which I have just mentioned and many
others close to London, we made only three or four short trips out of
the city returning the same or the following day. We managed to reach
the majority of such points by going and returning over different
highways on our longer tours. In this way we avoided the difficulty we
should have experienced in making many daily trips from London, since a
large part of each day would have been consumed merely in getting in and
out of the city.


From Painting by Alfred Elias. Exhibited in 1906 Royal Academy.]

Our first trip into the country was made on the Sunday after our
arrival. Although we started out at random, our route proved a fortunate
one, and gave us every reason to believe that our tour of the Kingdom
would be all we had anticipated. During the summer we had occasion to
travel three times over this same route, and we are still of the opinion
that there are few more delightful bits of road in England. We left
London by the main highway, running for several miles through Epping
Forest, which is really a great suburban park. It was a good day for
cyclists, for the main road to the town of Epping was crowded with
thousands of them. So great was the number and so completely did they
occupy the highway, that it was necessary to drive slowly and with
the greatest care. Even then, we narrowly avoided a serious accident.
One of the cyclists, evidently to show his dexterity, undertook to cut
around us by running across the tramway tracks. These were wet and
slippery, and the wheel shot from under the rider, pitching him headlong
to the ground not two feet in front of our car, which was then going at
a pretty good rate. If the cyclist did not exhibit skill in managing his
wheel, he certainly gave a wonderful display of agility in getting out
of our way. He did not seem to touch the ground at all, and by turning
two or three handsprings, he avoided being run over by the narrowest
margin. His wheel was considerably damaged and his impedimenta scattered
over the road. It was with rather a crestfallen air that he gathered up
his belongings, and we went on, shuddering to think how close we had
come to a serious accident at the very beginning of our pilgrimage. A
policeman witnessed the accident, but he clearly placed the blame on the
careless wheelman.

Passing through the forest, we came to Epping, and from there into a
stretch of open country that gave little suggestion of proximity to the
world's metropolis. Several miles through a narrow but beautifully kept
byway brought us to the village of Chipping-Ongar, a place of
considerable antiquity, and judging from the extensive site of its
ancient castle, at one time of some military importance.

At Ongar we began our return trip to London over the road which we
agreed was the most beautiful leading out of the city, for the suburbs
do not extend far in this direction and one is comparatively soon in the
country. The perfectly surfaced road, with only gentle slopes and
curves, runs through the parklike fields, here over a picturesque stone
bridge spanning a clear stream, there between rows of magnificent trees,
occasionally dropping into quiet villages, of which Chigwell was easily
the most delightful.

Chigwell became known to fame through the writings of Charles Dickens,
who was greatly enamored of the place and who made it the scene of much
of his story of "Barnaby Rudge." But Dickens, with his eye for the
beautiful and with his marvelous intuition for interesting situations,
was drawn to the village by its unusual charm. Few other places can
boast of such endorsement as he gave in a letter to his friend, Forster,
when he wrote: "Chigwell, my dear fellow, is the greatest place in the
world. Name your day for going. Such a delicious old inn facing the
church; such a lovely ride; such glorious scenery; such an
out-of-the-way rural place; such a sexton! I say again, name your day."
After such a recommendation, one will surely desire to visit the place,
and it is pleasant to know that the "delicious old inn" is still
standing and that the village is as rural and pretty as when Dickens
wrote over sixty years since.

The inn referred to, the King's Head, was the prototype of the Maypole
in "Barnaby Rudge," and here we were delighted to stop for our belated
luncheon. The inn fronts directly on the street and, like all English
hostelries, its main rooms are given over to the bar, which at this time
was crowded with Sunday loafers, the atmosphere reeking with tobacco
smoke and the odor of liquors. The garden at the rear was bright with a
profusion of spring flowers and sheltered with ornamental trees and
vines. The garden side of the old house was covered with a mantle of
ivy, and, altogether, the surroundings were such as to make ample amends
for the rather unprepossessing conditions within. One will not fully
appreciate Chigwell and its inn unless he has read Dickens' story. You
may still see the panelled room upstairs where Mr. Chester met Geoffry
Haredale. This room has a splendid mantel-piece, great carved open beams
and beautiful leaded windows. The bar-room, no doubt, is still much the
same as on the stormy night which Dickens chose for the opening of his
story. Just across the road from the inn is the church which also
figures in the tale, and a dark avenue of ancient yew trees leads from
the gateway to the door. One can easily imagine the situation which
Dickens describes when the old sexton crossed the street and rang the
church bells on the night of the murder at Haredale Hall.

Aside from Dickens' connection with Chigwell, the village has a place of
peculiar interest to Americans in the old grammar school where William
Penn received his early education. The building still stands, with but
little alteration, much as it was in the day when the great Quaker sat
at the rude desks and conned the lessons of the old-time English

When we invited friends whom we met in London to accompany us on a
Sunday afternoon trip, we could think of no road more likely to please
them than the one I have just been trying to describe. We reversed our
journey this time, going out of London on the way to Chigwell.
Returning, we left the Epping road shortly after passing through that
town, and followed a narrow, forest-bordered byway with a few steep
hills until we came to Waltham Abbey, a small Essex market town with an
important history. The stately abbey church, a portion of which is still
standing and now used for services, was founded by the Saxon king,
Harold, in 1060. Six years later he was defeated and slain at Hastings
by William the Conqueror, and tradition has it that his mother buried
his body a short distance to the east of Waltham Church. The abbey gate
still stands as a massive archway at one end of the river bridge. Near
the town is one of the many crosses erected by Edward I in memory of his
wife, Eleanor of Castile, wherever her body rested on the way from
Lincoln to Westminster. A little to the left of this cross, now a
gateway to Theobald Park, stands Temple Bar, stone for stone intact as
it was in the days when traitors' heads were raised above it in Fleet
Street, although the original wooden gates are missing. Waltham Abbey is
situated on the River Lea, near the point where King Alfred defeated the
Danes in one of his battles. They had penetrated far up the river when
King Alfred diverted the waters from beneath their vessels and left them
stranded in a wilderness of marsh and forest.

Another pleasant afternoon trip was to Monken Hadley, twenty-five miles
out on the Great North Road. Hadley Church is intimately associated with
a number of distinguished literary men, among them Thackeray, whose
grandfather preached there and is buried in the churchyard. The sexton
was soon found and he was delighted to point out the interesting objects
in the church and vicinity.

The church stands at the entrance of a royal park, which is leased to
private parties and is one of the quaintest and most picturesque of the
country churches we had seen. Over the doors, some old-fashioned
figures which we had to have translated indicated that the building had
been erected in 1494. It has a huge ivy-covered tower and its interior
gives every evidence of the age-lasting solidity of the English

Hadley Church has a duplicate in the United States, one having been
built in some New York town precisely like the older structure. We
noticed that one of the stained-glass windows had been replaced by a
modern one, and were informed that the original had been presented to
the newer church in America--a courtesy that an American congregation
would hardly think of, and be still less likely to carry out. An odd
silver communion service which had been in use from three to five
hundred years was carefully taken out of a fire-proof safe and shown us.

Hadley Church is a delight from every point of view, and it is a pity
that such lines of architecture are not oftener followed in America. Our
churches as a rule are shoddy and inharmonious affairs compared with
those in England. It is not always the matter of cost that makes them
so, since more artistic structures along the pleasing and substantial
lines of architecture followed in Britain would in many cases cost no
more than we pay for such churches as we now have.


Our friend the sexton garrulously assured us that Thackeray had spent
much of his time as a youth at the vicarage and insisted that a great
part of "Vanity Fair" was written there. He even pointed out the room in
which he alleged the famous book was produced, and assured us that the
great author had found the originals of many of his characters, such as
Becky Sharp and Col. Newcome, among the villagers of Hadley. All of
which we took for what it was worth. Thackeray himself told his friend,
Jas. T. Fields, that "Vanity Fair" was written in his London house;
still, he may have been a visitor at the Hadley vicarage and might have
found pleasure in writing in the snug little room whose windows open on
the flower garden, rich with dashes of color that contrasted effectively
with the dark green foliage of the hedges and trees. The house still
does duty as a vicarage; the small casement windows peep out of the ivy
that nearly envelops it, and an air of coziness and quiet seems to
surround it. Near at hand is the home where Anthony Trollope, the
novelist, lived for many years, and his sister is buried in the

A short distance from Hadley is the village of Edgeware, with
Whitchurch, famous for its association with the musician Handel. He was
organist here for several years, and on the small pipe-organ, still in
the church though not in use, composed his oratorio, "Esther," and a
less important work, "The Harmonious Blacksmith." The idea of the latter
came from an odd character, the village blacksmith, who lived in
Edgeware in Handel's day and who acquired some fame as a musician. His
tombstone in the churchyard consists of an anvil and hammer, wrought in
stone. Afterwards Handel became more widely known, and was called from
Whitchurch for larger fields of work. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

The road from Edgeware to the city is a good one, and being Saturday
afternoon, it was nearly deserted. Saturday in London is quite as much
of a holiday as Sunday, little business being transacted, especially in
the afternoon. This custom prevails to a large extent all over the
Kingdom, and rarely is any attempt made to do business on Saturday. The
Week-End holiday, as it is called, is greatly prized, and is recognized
by the railroads in granting excursions at greatly reduced rates. There
is always a heavy exodus of people from the city to the surrounding
resorts during the summer and autumn months on Saturday afternoon and

Owing to the extreme difficulty of getting about the city, we made but
few short excursions from London such as I have described. If one
desires to visit such places in sequence, without going farther into the
country, it would be best to stop for the night at the hotels in the
better suburban towns, without attempting to return to London each day.

The garage accomodations in London I found very good and the charges
generally lower than in the United States. There is a decided tendency
at grafting on the part of the employes, and if it is ascertained that a
patron is a tourist--especially an American--he is quoted a higher rate
at some establishments and various exactions are attempted. At the first
garage where I applied, a quotation made was withdrawn when it was
learned that I was an American. The man said he would have to discuss
the matter with his partner before making a final rate. I let him carry
on his discussion indefinitely, for I went on my way and found another
place where I secured accommodations at a very reasonable rate without
giving information of any kind.

With the miserable business methods in vogue at some of the garages, it
seemed strange to me if any of the money paid to employes ever went to
the business office at all. There was no system and little check on
sales of supplies, and I heard a foreman of a large establishment
declare that he had lost two guineas which a patron had paid him. "I
can't afford to lose it," he said, "and it will have to come back
indirectly if I can't get it directly." In no case should a motorist pay
a bill at a London garage without a proper receipt.



No place within equal distance of London is of greater interest than
Canterbury, and, indeed, there are very few cities in the entire Kingdom
that can vie with the ancient cathedral town in historical importance
and antiquity. It lies only sixty-five miles southeast of London, but
allowing for the late start that one always makes from an English hotel,
and the points that will engage attention between the two cities, the
day will be occupied by the trip. Especially will this be true if, as in
our case, fully two hours be spent in getting out of the city and
reaching the highway south of the Thames, which follows the river to

Leaving Russell Square about ten o'clock, I followed the jam down
Holborn past the Bank and across London Bridge, crawling along at a
snail's pace until we were well beyond the river. A worse route and a
more trying one it would have been hard to select. With more experience,
I should have run down the broad and little-congested Kingsway to
Waterloo Bridge and directly on to Old Kent road in at least one-fourth
the time which I consumed in my ignorance. Nevertheless, if a novice
drives a car in London, he can hardly avoid such experiences. Detailed
directions given in advance cannot be remembered and there is little
opportunity to consult street signs and maps or even to question the
policeman in the never-ending crush of the streets. However, one
gradually gains familiarity with the streets and landmarks, and by the
time I was ready to leave London for America, I had just learned to get
about the city with comparative ease.

Old Kent road, which leads out of London towards Canterbury, is an
ancient highway, and follows nearly, if not quite, the route pursued by
the Canterbury pilgrims of the poet Chaucer. In the main it is unusually
broad and well kept, but progress will be slow at first, as the suburbs
extend a long way in this direction, and for the first twenty-five miles
one can hardly be said to be out of the city at any time. Ten miles out
the road passes Greenwich, where the British observatory is located, and
Woolwich, the seat of the great government arsenals and gun works, is
also near this point, lying directly by the river.

Nearly midway between London and Rochester is the old town of Dartford,
where we enjoyed the hospitality of the Bull Hotel for luncheon. A
dingy, time-worn, rambling old hostelry it is, every odd corner filled
with stuffed birds and beasts to an extent that suggested a museum, and
as if to still further carry out the museum feature, mine host had built
in a small court near the entrance a large cage or bird-house which was
literally alive with specimens of feathered songsters of all degrees.
The space on the first floor not occupied by these curios was largely
devoted to liquor selling, for there appeared to be at least three bars
in the most accessible parts of the hotel. However, somewhat to the rear
there was a comfortable coffee room, where our luncheon was neatly
served. We had learned by this time that all well regulated hotels in
the medium sized towns, and even in some of the larger cities--as large
as Bristol, for instance--have two dining rooms, one, generally for
tourists, called the "coffee room," with separate small tables, and a
much larger room for "commercials," or traveling salesmen, where all are
seated together at a single table. The service is practically the same,
but the ratio of charges is from two to three times higher in the coffee
room. We found many old hotels in retired places where a coffee room had
been hastily improvised, an innovation no doubt brought about largely by
the motor car trade and the desire to give the motorist more
aristocratic rates than those charged the well-posted commercials.
Though we stopped in Dartford no longer than necessary for lunch and a
slight repair to the car, it is a place of considerable interest. Its
chief industry is a large paper-mill, a direct successor to the first
one established in England near the end of the Sixteenth Century, and
Foolscap paper, standard throughout the English-speaking world, takes
its name from the crest (a fool's cap) of the founder of the industry,
whose tomb may still be seen in Dartford Church.

A short run over a broad road bordered with beautiful rural scenery
brought us into Rochester, whose cathedral spire and castle with its
huge Norman tower loomed into view long before we came into the town
itself. A few miles out of the town our attention had been attracted by
a place of unusual beauty, a fine old house almost hidden by high hedges
and trees on one side of the road and just opposite a tangled bit of
wood and shrubbery, with several of the largest cedars we saw in
England. So picturesque was the spot that we stopped for a photograph of
the car and party, with the splendid trees for a background, but, as
often happens in critical cases, the kodak film only yielded a "fog"
when finally developed.

When we reached Rochester, a glance at the map showed us that we had
unwittingly passed Gad's Hill, the home where Charles Dickens spent the
last fifteen years of his life and where he died thirty-six years ago.
We speedily retraced the last four or five miles of our journey and
found ourselves again at the fine old place with the cedar trees where
we had been but a short time before. We stopped to inquire at a roadside
inn which, among the multitude of such places, we had hardly noticed
before, and which bore the legend, "The Sir John Falstaff," a
distinction earned by being the identical place where Shakespeare
located some of the pranks of his ridiculous hero. The inn-keeper was
well posted on the literary traditions of the locality. "Yes," said he,
"this is Gad's Hill Place, where Dickens lived and where he died just
thirty-six years ago today, on June 9th, 1870; but the house is shown
only on Wednesdays of each week and the proprietor doesn't fancy being
troubled on other days. But perhaps, since you are Americans and have
come a long way, he may admit you on this special anniversary. Anyway,
it will do no harm for you to try."


Personally, I could not blame the proprietor for his disinclination to
admit visitors on other than the regular days, and it was impressed on
me more than once during our trip that living in the home of some famous
man carries quite a penalty, especially if the present owner happens to
be a considerate gentleman who dislikes to deprive visitors of a glimpse
of the place. Such owners are often wealthy and the small fees which
they fix for admittance are only required as evidence of good faith and
usually devoted to charity. With a full appreciation of the
situation, it was not always easy to ask for the suspension of a
plainly stated rule, yet we did this in many instances before our tour
was over and almost invariably with success. In the present case we were
fortunate, for the gentleman who owned Gad's Hill was away and the neat
maid who responded to the bell at the gateway seemed glad to show us the
place, regardless of rules. It is a comfortable, old-fashioned house,
built about 1775, and was much admired by Dickens as a boy when he lived
with his parents in Rochester. His father used to bring him to look at
the house and told him that if he grew up a clever man, he might
possibly own it some time.

We were first shown into the library, which is much the same as the
great writer left it at his death, and the chair and desk which he used
still stand in their accustomed places. The most curious feature of the
library is the rows of dummy books that occupy some of the shelves, and
even the doors are lined with these sham leather backs glued to boards,
a whim of Dickens carefully respected by the present owner. We were also
accorded a view of the large dining room where Dickens was seized with
the attack which resulted in his sudden and unexpected death. After a
glimpse of other parts of the house and garden surrounding it, the maid
conducted us through an underground passage leading beneath the road, to
the plot of shrubbery which lay opposite the mansion. In this secluded
thicket, Dickens had built a little house, to which in the summer time
he was often accustomed to retire when writing. It was an ideal English
June day, and everything about the place showed to the best possible
advantage. We all agreed that Gad's Hill alone would be well worth a
trip from London. The country around is surpassingly beautiful and it is
said that Dickens liked nothing better than to show his friends about
the vicinity. He thought the seven miles between Rochester and Maidstone
the most charming walk in all England. He delighted in taking trips with
his friends to the castles and cathedrals and he immensely enjoyed
picnics and luncheons in the cherry orchards and gardens.

A very interesting old city is Rochester, with its Eleventh Century
cathedral and massive castle standing on the banks of the river. Little
of the latter remains save the square tower of the Norman keep, one of
the largest and most imposing we saw in England. The interior had been
totally destroyed by fire hundreds of years ago, but the towering walls
of enormous thickness still stand firm. Its antiquity is attested by the
fact that it sustained a siege by William Rufus, the son of the
Conqueror. The cathedral is not one of the most impressive of the great
churches. It was largely rebuilt in the Twelfth Century, the money being
obtained from miracles wrought by the relics of St. William of Perth, a
pilgrim who was murdered on his way to Canterbury and who lies buried in
the cathedral. Rochester is the scene of many incidents of Dickens'
stories. It was the scene of his last unfinished work, "Edwin Drood,"
and he made many allusions to it elsewhere, the most notable perhaps in
"Pickwick Papers," where he makes the effervescent Mr. Jingle describe
it thus: "Ah, fine place, glorious pile, frowning walls, tottering
arches, dark nooks, crumbling staircases--old cathedral, too,--earthy
smell--pilgrims' feet worn away the old steps."

Across the river from Rochester lies Chatham, a city of forty thousand
people and a famous naval and military station. The two cities are
continuous and practically one. From here, without further stop, we
followed the fine highway to Canterbury and entered the town by the west
gate of Chaucer's Tales. This alone remains of the six gateways of the
city wall in the poet's day, and the strong wall itself, with its
twenty-one towers, has almost entirely disappeared. We followed a
winding street bordered with quaint old buildings until we reached our
hotel--in this case a modern and splendidly kept hostelry. The hotel was
just completing an extensive garage, but it was not ready for occupancy
and I was directed to a well equipped private establishment with every
facility for the care and repair of motors. The excellence of the
service at this hotel attracted our attention and the head waiter told
us that the owners had their own farm and supplied their own
table--accounting in this way for the excellence and freshness of the
milk, meat and vegetables.

The long English summer evening still afforded time to look about the
town after dinner. Passing down the main street after leaving the hotel,
we found that the river and a canal wound their way in several places
between the old buildings closely bordering on each side. The whole
effect was delightful and so soft with sunset colors as to be suggestive
of Venice. We noted that although Canterbury is exceedingly ancient, it
is also a city of nearly thirty thousand population and the center of
rich farming country, and, as at Chester, we found many evidences of
prosperity and modern enterprise freely interspersed with the quaint and
time-worn landmarks. One thing which we noticed not only here but
elsewhere in England was the consummate architectural taste with which
the modern business buildings were fitted in with the antique
surroundings, harmonizing in style and color, and avoiding the
discordant note that would come from a rectangular business block such
as an American would have erected. Towns which have become known to fame
and to the dollar-distributing tourists are now very slow to destroy or
impair the old monuments and buildings that form their chief
attractiveness, and the indifference that prevailed generally fifty or a
hundred years ago has entirely vanished. We in America think we can
afford to be iconoclastic, for our history is so recent and we have so
little that commands reverence by age and association; yet five hundred
years hence our successors will no doubt bitterly regret this spirit of
their ancestors, just as many ancient towns in Britain lament the folly
of their forbears who converted the historic abbeys and castles into
hovels and stone fences.

Fortunately, the cathedral at Canterbury escaped such a fate, and as we
viewed it in the fading light we received an impression of its grandeur
and beauty that still keeps it pre-eminent after having visited every
cathedral in the island. It is indeed worthy of its proud position in
the English church and its unbroken line of traditions, lost in the mist
of antiquity. It is rightly the delight of the architect and the artist,
but an adequate description of its magnificence has no place in this
hurried record. Time has dealt gently with it and careful repair and
restoration have arrested its decay. It stands today, though subdued and
stained by time, as proudly as it did when a monarch, bare-footed,
walked through the roughly paved streets to do penance at the tomb of
its martyred archbishop. It escaped lightly during the Reformation and
civil war, though Becket's shrine was despoiled as savoring of idolatry
and Cromwell's men desecrated its sanctity by stabling their horses in
the great church.

The next day being Sunday, we were privileged to attend services at the
cathedral, an opportunity we were always glad to have at any of the
cathedrals despite the monotony of the Church of England service, for
the music of the superb organs, the mellowed light from the stained
windows, and the associations of the place were far more to us than
litany or sermon. The archbishop was present at the service in state
that fitted his exalted place as Primate of all England and his rank,
which, as actual head of the church, is next to the king, nominally head
of the church as well as of the state. He did not preach the sermon but
officiated in the ordination of several priests, a service full of
solemn and picturesque interest. The archbishop was attired in his
crimson robe of state, the long train of which was carried by young boys
in white robes, and he proceeded to his throne with all the pomp and
ceremony that so delights the soul of the Englishman. He was preceded by
several black-robed officials bearing the insignia of their offices, and
when he took his throne, he became apparently closely absorbed in the
sermon, which was preached by a Cambridge professor.

We were later astonished to learn that the archbishop's salary amounts
to $75,000 per year, or half as much more than that of the President of
the United States, and we were still more surprised to hear that the
heavy demands made on him in maintaining his state and keeping up his
splendid episcopal palaces are such that his income will not meet them.
We were told that the same situation prevails everywhere with these high
church dignitaries, and that only recently the Bishop of London had
published figures to show that he was $25,000 poorer in the three years
of his incumbency on an annual salary of $40,000 per year. It is not
strange, therefore, that among these churchmen there exists a demand for
a simpler life. The Bishop of Norwich frankly acknowledged recently that
he had never been able to live on his income of $22,500 per year. He
expressed his conviction that the wide-spread poverty of the bishops is
caused by their being required to maintain "venerable but costly
palaces." He says that he and many of his fellow-churchmen would prefer
to lead plain and unostentatious lives, but they are not allowed to do
so; that they would much prefer to devote a portion of their income to
charity and other worthy purposes rather than to be compelled to spend
it in useless pomp and ceremony.

Aside from its cathedral, Canterbury teems with unique relics of the
past, some antedating the Roman invasion of England. The place of the
town in history is an important one, and Dean Stanley in his "Memorials
of Canterbury," claims that three great landings were made in Kent
adjacent to the city, "that of Hengist and Horsa, which gave us our
English forefathers and character; that of Julius Caesar, which revealed
to us the civilized world, and that of St. Augustine, which gave us our
Latin Christianity." The tower of the cathedral dominates the whole city
and the great church often overshadows everything else in interest to
the visitor. But one could spend days in the old-world streets,
continually coming across fine half-timbered houses, with weather-beaten
gables in subdued colors and rich antique oak carvings. There are few
more pleasing bits of masonry in Britain than the great cathedral
gateway at the foot of Mercery Lane, with its rich carving, weather-worn
to a soft blur of gray and brown tones. Near Mercery Lane, too, are
slight remains of the inn of Chaucer's Tales, "The Chequers of Hope,"
and in Monastery Street stands the fine gateway of the once rich and
powerful St. Augustine's Abbey. Then there is the quaint little church
of St. Martins, undoubtedly one of the oldest in England, and generally
reputed to be the oldest. Here, in the year 600, St. Augustine preached
before the cathedral was built. Neither should St. John's hospital,
with its fine, half-timbered gateway be forgotten; nor the old grammar
school, founded in the Seventh Century.


Our stay in the old town was all too short, but business reasons
demanded our presence in London on Monday, so we left for that city
about two o'clock. We varied matters somewhat by taking a different
return route, and we fully agreed that the road leading from Canterbury
to London by way of Maidstone is one of the most delightful which we
traversed in England. It led through fields fresh with June verdure,
losing itself at times in great forests, where the branches of the trees
formed an archway overhead. Near Maidstone we caught a glimpse of Leeds
Castle, one of the finest country seats in Kent, the main portions of
the building dating from the Thirteenth Century. We had a splendid view
from the highway through an opening in the trees of the many-towered old
house surrounded by a shimmering lake, and gazing on such a scene under
the spell of an English June day, one might easily forget the present
and fancy himself back in the time when knighthood was in flower, though
the swirl of a motor rushing past us would have dispelled any such
reverie had we been disposed to entertain it. We reached London early,
and our party was agreed that our pilgrimage to Canterbury could not
very well have been omitted from our itinerary.



I had provided myself with letters of introduction from the American
Automobile Association and Motor League, addressed to the secretary of
the Motor Union of Great Britain and Ireland, and shortly after my
arrival in London, I called upon that official at the club headquarters.
After learning my plans, he referred me to Mr. Maroney, the touring
secretary, whom I found a courteous gentleman, posted on almost every
foot of road in Britain and well prepared to advise one how to get the
most out of a tour. Ascertaining the time I proposed to spend and the
general objects I had in view, he brought out road-maps of England and
Scotland and with a blue pencil rapidly traced a route covering about
three thousand miles, which he suggested as affording the best
opportunity of seeing, in the time and distance proposed, many of the
most historic and picturesque parts of Britain.

In a general way, this route followed the coast from London to Land's
End, through Wales north to Oban and Inverness, thence to Aberdeen and
back to London along the eastern coast. He chose the best roads with
unerring knowledge and generally avoided the larger cities. On the
entire route which he outlined, we found only one really dangerous
grade--in Wales--and, by keeping away from cities, much time and nervous
energy were saved. While we very frequently diverged from this route, it
was none the less of inestimable value to us, and other information,
maps, road-books, etc., which were supplied us by Mr. Maroney, were
equally indispensable. I learned that the touring department of the
Union not only affords this service for Great Britain, but has equal
facilities for planning tours in any part of Europe. In fact, it is able
to take in hand the full details, such as providing for transportation
of the car to some port across the Channel, arranging for necessary
licenses and supplying maps and road information covering the different
countries of Europe which the tourist may wish to visit. This makes it
very easy for a member of the Union--or anyone to whom it may extend its
courtesies--to go direct from Britain for a continental trip, leaving
the tourist almost nothing to provide for except the difficulties he
would naturally meet in the languages of the different countries.

When I showed a well posted English friend the route that had been
planned, he pronounced very favorably upon it, but declared that by no
means should we miss a run through the Midlands. He suggested that I
join him in Manchester on business which we had in hand, allowing for an
easy run of two days to that city by way of Coventry. On our return
trip, we planned to visit many places not included in our main tour,
among them the Welsh border towns, Shrewsbury and Ludlow, and to run
again through Warwickshire, taking in Stratford and Warwick, on our
return to London. This plan was adopted and we left London about noon,
with Coventry, nearly one hundred miles away, as our objective point.

A motor car is a queer and capricious creature. Before we were entirely
out of the crush of the city, the engine began to limp and shortly came
to a stop. I spent an hour hunting the trouble, to the entertainment and
edification of the crowd of loafers who always congregate around a
refractory car. I hardly know to this minute what ailed the thing, but
it suddenly started off blithely, and this was the only exhibition of
sulkiness it gave, for it scarcely missed a stroke in our Midland trip
of eight hundred miles--mostly in the rain. Nevertheless, the little
circumstance, just at the outset of our tour, was depressing.

We stopped for lunch at the Red Lion in the old town of St. Albans,
twenty miles to the north of London. It is a place of much historic
interest, being a direct descendant of the ancient Roman city of
Verulamium; and Saint Albans, or Albanus, who gave his name to the town
and cathedral and who was beheaded near this spot, was the first British
martyr to Christianity of whom there is any record. The cathedral
occupies the highest site of any in England, and the square Norman
tower, which owes its red coloring to the Roman brick used in its
construction, is a conspicuous object from the surrounding country. The
nave is of remarkable length, being exceeded only by Winchester. Every
style of architecture is represented, from early Norman to late
Perpendicular, and there are even a few traces of Saxon work. The
destruction of this cathedral was ordered by the pious Henry VIII at the
time of his Reformation, but he considerately rescinded the order when
the citizens of St. Albans raised money by public subscription to
purchase the church. Only an hour was given to St. Albans, much less
than we had planned, but our late start made it imperative that we move

Our route for the day was over the old coach road leading from London to
Holyhead, one of the most perfect in the Kingdom, having been in
existence from the time of the Romans. In fact, no stretch of road of
equal distance in our entire tour was superior to the one we followed
from St. Albans to Coventry. It was nearly level, free from sharp turns,
with perfect surface, and cared for with neatness such as we would find
only in a millionaire's private grounds in the United States.
Everywhere men were at work repairing any slight depression, trimming
the lawnlike grasses on each side to an exact line with the edges of the
stone surface, and even sweeping the road in many places to rid it of
dust and dirt. Here and there it ran for a considerable distance through
beautiful avenues of fine elms and yews; the hawthorne hedges which
bordered it almost everywhere were trimmed with careful exactness; and
yet amid all this precision there bloomed in many places the sweet
English wild flowers--forget-me-nots, violets, wild hyacinths and
bluebells. The country itself was rather flat and the villages generally
uninteresting. The road was literally bordered with wayside inns, or,
more properly, ale houses, for they apparently did little but sell
liquor, and their names were odd and fantastic in a high degree. We
noted a few of them. The "Stump and Pie," the "Hare and Hounds," the
"Plume of Feathers," the "Blue Ball Inn," the "Horse and Wagon," the
"Horse and Jockey," the "Dog and Parson," the "Dusty Miller," the "Angel
Hotel" the "Dun Cow Inn," the "Green Man," the "Adam and Eve," and the
"Coach and Horses," are a few actual examples of the fearful and
wonderful nomenclature of the roadside houses. Hardly less numerous than
these inns were the motor-supply depots along this road. There is
probably no other road in England over which there is greater motor
travel, and supplies of all kinds are to be had every mile or two. The
careless motorist would not have far to walk should he neglect to keep
up his supply of petrol--or motor spirit, as they call it everywhere in

Long before we reached Coventry, we saw the famous "three spires"
outlined against a rather threatening cloud, and just as we entered the
crooked streets of the old town, the rain began to fall heavily. The
King's Head Hotel was comfortable and up-to-date, and the large room
given us, with its fire burning brightly in the open grate, was
acceptable indeed after the drive in the face of a sharp wind, which had
chilled us through. And, by the way, there is little danger of being
supplied with too many clothes and wraps when motoring in Britain. There
were very few days during our entire summer's tour when one could
dispense with cloaks and overcoats.

Coventry, with its odd buildings and narrow, crowded streets, reminded
Nathaniel Hawthorne of Boston--not the old English Boston, but its big
namesake in America. Many parts of the city are indeed quaint and
ancient, the finest of the older buildings dating from about the year
1400; but these form only a nucleus for the more modern city which has
grown up around them. Coventry now has a population of about
seventy-five thousand, and still maintains its old-time reputation as
an important manufacturing center. Once it was famed for its silks,
ribbons and watches, but this trade was lost to the French and
Swiss--some say for lack of a protective tariff. Now cycles and motor
cars are the principal products; and we saw several of the famous
Daimler cars, made here, being tested on the streets.

Coventry has three fine old churches, whose tall needlelike spires form
a landmark from almost any point of view in Warwickshire, and give to
the town the appellation by which it is often known--"The City of the
Three Spires." Nor could we well have forgotten Coventry's unique
legend, for high up on one of the gables of our hotel was a wooden
figure said to represent Peeping Tom, who earned eternal ignominy by his
curiosity when Lady Godiva resorted to her remarkable expedient to
reduce the tax levy of Coventry. Our faith in the story, so beautifully
re-told by Tennyson, will not be shaken by the iconoclastic assertion
that the effigy is merely an old sign taken from an armourer's shop;
that the legend of Lady Godiva is common to half a dozen towns; and that
she certainly never had anything to do with Coventry, in any event.

Leaving Coventry the next day about noon in a steady rain, we sought the
most direct route to Manchester, thereby missing Nuneaton, the
birthplace and for many years the home of George Eliot and the center
of some of the most delightful country in Warwickshire. Had we been more
familiar with the roads of this country, we could have passed through
Nuneaton without loss of time. The distance was only a little greater
and over main roads, whereas we traveled for a good portion of the day
through narrow byways, and the difficulty of keeping the right road in
the continual rain considerably delayed our progress. We were agreeably
surprised to find that the car did not skid on the wet macadam road and
that despite the rain we could run very comfortably and quite as fast as
in fair weather. I had put up our cape top and curtains, but later we
learned that it was pleasanter, protected by water-proof wraps, to dash
through the rain in the open car. English spring showers are usually
light, and it was rather exhilarating to be able to bid defiance to
weather conditions that in most parts of the United States would have
put a speedy end to our tour.

A few miles farther brought us to Tamworth with its castle, lying on the
border between Warwickshire and Staffordshire, the "tower and town" of
Scott's "Marmion." The castle of the feudal baron chosen by Scott as the
hero of his poem still stands in ruins, and was recently acquired by
the town. It occupies a commanding position on a knoll and is
surrounded by a group of fine trees.

A dozen miles more over a splendid road brought in view the three spires
of Lichfield Cathedral, one of the smallest though most beautiful of
these great English churches. Built of red sandstone, rich with
sculptures and of graceful and harmonious architecture, there are few
cathedrals more pleasing. The town of Lichfield is a comparatively small
place, but it has many literary and historical associations, being the
birthplace of Dr. Samuel Johnson, whose house is still standing, and for
many years the home of Maria Edgeworth. Here, too, once lived Major
Andre, whose melancholy death in connection with the American Revolution
will be recalled. The cathedral was fortified during the civil war and
was sadly battered in sieges by Cromwell's Roundheads; but so completely
has it been rebuilt and restored that it presents rather a new
appearance as compared with many others. It occurred to us that the hour
for luncheon was well past, and we stopped at the rambling old Swan
Hotel, which was to all appearances deserted, for we wandered through
narrow halls and around the office without finding anyone. I finally
ascended two flights of stairs and found a chambermaid, who reluctantly
undertook to locate someone in authority, which she at last did. We were
shown into a clean, comfortable coffee room, where tea, served in
front of a glowing fire place, was grateful indeed after our long ride
through the cold rain.


From Photograph.]

It became apparent that owing to our many delays, we could not easily
reach Manchester, and we stopped at Newcastle-under-Lyme for the night.
This town has about 20,000 people and lies on the outer edge of the
potteries district, where Josiah Wedgewood founded this great industry
over one hundred years ago. The whole region comprising Burslem, Hanley,
Newcastle, Stoke-on-Trent and many smaller places may be described as a
huge, scattered city of about 300,000 inhabitants, nearly all directly
or indirectly connected with the manufacture of various grades of china
and earthenware. The Castle Hotel, where we stopped, was a very old inn,
yet it proved unexpectedly homelike and comfortable. Our little party
was given a small private dining room with massive antique furniture,
and we were served with an excellent dinner by an obsequious waiter in
full-dress suit and with immaculate linen. He cleared the table and left
us for the evening with the apartment as a sitting room, and a mahogany
desk by the fireside, well supplied with stationery, afforded amends for
neglected letters. In the morning, our breakfast was served in the same
room, and the bill for entertainment seemed astonishingly low. Mine host
will no doubt be wiser in this particular as motorists more and more
invade the country.

An hour's drive brought us to Manchester. The road by which we entered
the city took us direct to the Midland Hotel, which is reputed to be the
finest in the Kingdom. Manchester is a city of nearly a million
inhabitants, but its streets seemed almost like those of a country town
as compared with the crowded thoroughfares of London. It is a great
center for motoring and I found many of the garages so full that they
could not take another car. I eventually came to one of the largest,
where by considerable shifting they managed to accommodate my car. But
with all this rush of business, it seemed to me that the owners were in
no danger of becoming plutocrats, for the charge for a day's garage,
cleaning the car, polishing the brass and making a slight repair, was
five shillings.

For half the way from Manchester to Leeds, the drive was about as trying
as anything I found in England. The road is winding, exceedingly steep
in places, and built up on both sides with houses--largely homes of
miners and mill operatives. The pavement is of rough cobble-stones, and
swarms of dogs and children crowded the way everywhere. Under such
conditions, the numerous steep hills, narrow places and sharp turns in
the road made progress slow indeed. It was evident that the British
motorists generally avoid this country, for we met no cars and our own
attracted attention that showed it was not a common spectacle. However,
the trip was none the less an interesting one as showing a bit of the
country and a phase of English life not usually seen by tourists.

There is little to detain one within the city of Leeds itself, but there
are many places of interest in its immediate vicinity. There are few
more picturesque spots in Yorkshire than Wharfdale, with its riotous
little river and ruins of Bolton Abbey and Barden Tower. This lies about
fifteen miles to the northwest, and while for special reasons we went to
Ilkley Station by train, the trip is a fine motor drive over good roads.
The park which contains the abbey and castle is the property of the Duke
of Devonshire, who keeps it at all times open to the public. The River
Wharfe, rippling over shingly rocks, leaping in waterfalls and
compressed into the remarkable rapids called the Strid, only five or six
feet wide but very deep and terribly swift, is the most striking feature
of the park. The forest-clad cliffs on either side rise almost
precipitously from the edges of the narrow dale, and from their summit,
if the climb does not deter one, a splendid view presents itself. The
dale gradually opens into a beautiful valley and here the old abbey is
charmingly situated on the banks of the river. The ruins are not
extensive, but the crumbling walls, bright with ivy and wall flowers,
and with the soft green lawn beneath, made a delightful picture in the
mottled sunshine and shadows of the English May day.

On our return to Leeds, our friend who accompanied us suggested that we
spend the next day, Sunday, at Harrogate, fifteen miles to the north,
one of the most famous of English watering places. It had been drizzling
fitfully all day, but as we started on the trip, it began to rain in
earnest. After picking our way carefully until free from the slippery
streets in Leeds, we found the fine macadam road little affected by the
deluge. We were decidedly ahead of the season at Harrogate, and there
were but few people at the splendid hotel where we stopped.

The following Sunday was as raw and nasty as English weather can be when
it wants to, regardless of the time of year, and I did not take the car
out of the hotel garage. In the afternoon my friend and I walked to
Knaresborough, one of the old Yorkshire towns about three miles distant.
I had never even heard of the place before, and it was a thorough
surprise to me to find it one of the most ancient and interesting towns
in the Kingdom. Not a trace of modern improvement interfered with its
old-world quaintness--it looked as if it had been clinging undisturbed
to the sharply rising hillside for centuries. Just before entering the
town, we followed up the valley of the River Nidd to the so-called
"dripping well," whose waters, heavily charged with limestone, drip from
the cliffs above and "petrify" various objects in course of time by
covering them with a stonelike surface. Then we painfully ascended the
hill--not less than a forty-five per cent grade in motor parlance--and
wandered through the streets--if such an assortment of narrow
foot-paths, twisting around the corners, may be given the courtesy of
the name--until we came to the site of the castle. The guide-book gives
the usual epitaph for ruined castles, "Dismantled by orders of
Cromwell's Parliament," and so well was this done that only one of the
original eleven great watch-towers remains, and a small portion of the
Norman keep, beneath which are the elaborate vaulted apartments where
Becket's murderers once hid. No doubt the great difficulty the
Cromwellians had in taking the castle seemed a good reason to them for
effectually destroying it. At one time it was in the possession of the
notorious Piers Gaveston, and it was for a while the prison-house of
King Henry II. There are many other points of interest in Knaresborough,
not forgetting the cave from which Mother Shipton issued her famous
prophecies, in which she missed it only by bringing the world to an end
ahead of schedule time. But they deny in Knaresborough she ever made
such a prediction, and prefer to rest her claims to infallibility on her
prophecy illustrated on a post card by a highly colored motor car with
the legend,

    "Carriages without horses shall go,
    And accidents fill the world with woe."

Altogether, Knaresborough is a town little frequented by Americans, but
none the less worthy of a visit. Harrogate is an excellent center for
this and many other places, if one is insistent on the very best and
most stylish hotel accommodations that the island affords. Ripon, with
its cathedral and Fountains Abbey, perhaps the finest ruin in Great
Britain, is only a dozen miles away; but we visited these on our return
to London from the north.

On Monday the clouds cleared away and the whole country was gloriously
bright and fresh after the heavy showers. We returned to Leeds over the
road by which we came to Harrogate and which passes Haredale Hall, one
of the finest country places in the Kingdom. A large portion of the way
the road is bordered by fine forests, which form a great park around the
mansion. We passed through Leeds to the southward, having no desire to
return to Manchester over the road by which we came, or, in fact, to
pass through the city at all. Our objective point for the evening was
Chester, and this could be reached quite as easily by passing to the
south of Manchester. Wakefield, with its magnificent church, recently
dignified as a cathedral, was the first town of consequence on our way,
and about twenty-five miles south of Leeds we came to Barnsley, lying on
the edge of the great moorlands in central England. There is hardly a
town in the whole Kingdom that does not have its peculiar tradition, and
an English friend told us that the fame of Barnsley rests on the claim
that no hotel in England can equal the mutton chops of the King's
Head--a truly unique distinction in a land where the mutton chop is
standard and the best in the world.

An English moor is a revelation to an American who has never crossed one
and who may have a hazy notion of it from Tennyson's verse or "Lorna
Doone." Imagine, lying in the midst of fertile fields and populous
cities, a large tract of brown, desolate and broken land, almost devoid
of vegetation except gorse and heather, more comparable to the Arizona
sagebrush country than anything else, and you have a fair idea of the
"dreary, dreary moorland" of the poet. For twenty miles from Barnsley
our road ran through this great moor, and, except for two or three
wretched-looking public houses--one of them painfully misnamed "The
Angel"--there was not a single town or habitation along the road. The
moorland road began at Penistone, a desolate-looking little mining town
straggling along a single street that dropped down a very sharp grade
on leaving the town. Despite the lonely desolation of the moor, the road
was excellent, and followed the hills with gentle curves, generally
avoiding steep grades. So far as I can recall, we did not meet a single
vehicle of any kind in the twenty miles of moorland road--surely a
paradise for the scorcher. Coming out of the moor, we found ourselves
within half a dozen miles of Manchester--practically in its suburbs, for
Stalybridge, Stockport, Altrincham and other large manufacturing towns
are almost contiguous with the main city. The streets of these towns
were crowded with traffic and streetcar lines are numerous. There is
nothing of the slightest interest to the tourist, and after a belated
luncheon at a really modern hotel in Stockport, we set out on the last
forty miles of our journey. After getting clear of Manchester and the
surrounding towns, we came to the Chester road, one of the numberless
"Watling Streets," which one finds all over England--a broad, finely
kept high way, leading through a delightful country. Northwich, famous
for its salt mines, was the only town of any consequence until we
reached Chester. We had travelled a distance of about one hundred and
twenty miles--our longest day's journey, with one exception--not very
swift motoring, but we found that an average of one hundred miles per
day was quite enough to thoroughly satisfy us, and even with such an
apparently low average as this, a day's rest now and then did not
come amiss.

[Illustration: SUNSET ON THE MOOR.

From Painting by Termohlen.]

It would be better yet if one's time permitted a still lower daily
mileage. Not the least delightful feature of the tour was the marvelous
beauty of the English landscapes, and one would have a poor appreciation
of these to dash along at forty or even twenty-five miles per hour.
There were many places at which we did not stop at all, and which were
accorded scant space in the guide-books, that would undoubtedly have
given us ideas of English life and closer contact with the real spirit
of the people than one could possibly get in the tourist-thronged towns
and villages.



I shall say but little of Chester, as of every other place on the line
of our journey so well known as to be on the itinerary of nearly
everybody who makes any pretensions at touring Britain. The volumes
which have been written on the town and the many pages accorded it in
the guide-books will be quite sufficient for all seekers after
information. Frankly, I was somewhat disappointed with Chester. I had
imagined its quaintness that of a genuine old country town and was not
prepared for the modern city that surrounds its show-places. In the
words of an observant English writer: "It seems a trifle
self-conscious--its famous old rows carry a suspicion of being swept and
garnished for the dollar-distributing visitor from over the Atlantic,
and of being less genuine than they really are. However that may be, the
moment you are out of these show-streets of Chester, there is a singular
lack of charm in the environment. The taint of commerce and the smoke of
the north hangs visibly on the horizon. Its immediate surroundings are
modern and garish to a degree that by no means assists in the fiction
that Chester is the unadulterated old-country town one would like to
think it." Such a feeling I could not entirely rid myself of, and even
in following the old wall, I could not help noting its carefully
maintained disrepair. I would not wish to be understood as intimating
that Chester is not well worth a visit, and a visit of several days if
one can spare the time; only that its charm was, to me, inferior to that
of its more unpretentious neighbors, Shrewsbury and Ludlow. Our stay was
only a short one, since our route was to bring us to the town again;
still, we spent half a day in a most delightful manner, making a tour of
the "rows" and the odd corners with quaint buildings. The tourist,
fortified with his red-backed Baedecker, is a common sight to Chester
people, and his "dollar-distributing" propensity, as described by the
English writer I have quoted, is not unknown even to the smallest fry of
the town. Few things during our trip amused me more than the antics of a
brown, bare-foot, dirt-begrimed little mite not more than two or three
years old, who seized my wife's skirts and hung on for dear life,
pouring out earnestly and volubly her unintelligible jargon. We were at
first at a loss to understand what our new associate desired, and so
grimly did she hang on that it seemed as if another accession to our
party was assured--but a light dawned suddenly on us, and, as the brown
little hand clasped a broad English copper, our self-appointed
companion vanished like a flash into a neighboring shop.

Even when touring in your "wind-shod" car, as an up-to-date English poet
puts it, and though your motor waits you not a stone's throw from your
hotel, you may not entirely dispense with your antiquated equine friend
as a means of locomotion. So we learned when we proposed to visit Eaton
Hall, the country place of the Duke of Westminster, which lies closely
adjoining Chester, situated deep in the recesses of its
eight-thousand-acre park. A conspicuous sign, "Motors strictly
forbidden," posted near the great gateway, forced us to have recourse to
the hackman, whose moderate charge of eight shillings for a party of
three was almost repaid by his services as a guide. He was voluble in
his information concerning the Duke and especially dwelt on his
distinction as the richest man in the world--an honor which as good and
loyal Americans we could not willingly see wrested from our own John D.
of oleaginous fame. Eaton Hall is one of the greatest English
show-places, but it is modern and might well be matched by the castles
of several of our American aristocracy. Tame indeed seemed its swept and
garnished newness, its trim and perfect repair, after our visits to so
many time-worn places, with their long succession of hoary traditions.
The great library, with its thousands of volumes in the richest
bindings and its collections of rare editions, might well be the despair
of a bibliophile and the pictures and furnishings of rare interest to
the connoisseur--but these things one may find in the museums.

Over a main road, almost level and as nearly straight as any English
road merits such a description, we covered the forty miles from Chester
to Shrewsbury without incident. The most trying grade given in the
road-book is one in twenty-five, and all conditions are favorable for
record time--in absence of police traps. Four miles out of Chester we
passed Rowton Station, lying adjacent to Rowton Moor, where King
Charles, standing on the tower of Chester Wall which bears his name, saw
his army defeated by the Parliamentarians. We made a late start from
Chester, but reached Shrewsbury in time to visit many parts of the town
after dinner. We found it indeed a delightful old place, rich in
historic traditions, and the center of a country full of interesting
places. The town is built on a lofty peninsula, surrounded on three
sides by the River Severn, and the main streets lead up exceedingly
steep hills. In fact, many of the steepest and most dangerous hills
which we found in our travels were in the towns themselves, where grades
had been fixed by buildings long ago. The clean macadam in Shrewsbury
made it possible to drive our car without chains, though it rained
incessantly, but so steep and winding are some of the streets that the
greatest caution was necessary.

Shrewsbury is described by an English writer as a "sweet-aired, genuine,
dignified and proud old market town, the resort of squires, parsons and
farmers, and mainly inhabited by those who minister to their wants. It
never dreams of itself as a show-place." He also adds another strong
point in its claim to distinction: "Some years ago a book was published
by a zealous antiquarian, enumerating with much detail all the families
of England of a certain consequence who still occupied either the same
estate or estates contiguous to those upon which they were living in the
Fifteenth Century. The shire of which Shrewsbury is the capital very
easily headed the list in this honorable competition and thereby
justified the title of 'proud Salopians,' which the more consequential
of its people submit to with much complacency, even though it be not
always applied in a wholly serious way."

It is a genuine old border town, so far unspoiled by commercialism.
Modern improvements have not invaded its quaint streets to any great
extent, and many of these still retain their old names--Dog-pole,
Wylecop and Shoplatch--and are bordered by some of the finest
half-timbered houses in Britain. Nor is Shrewsbury wanting in famous
sons. In front of the old grammar school building is a bronze statue of
Charles Darwin, the man who changed the scientific thought of a world,
who was born here in 1809. This same grammar school was built in 1630
and is now converted into a museum of Roman relics, which have been
found in the immediate vicinity. In its earlier days, many distinguished
men received their education here, among them Sir Philip Sidney and
Judge Jeffreys. The Elizabethan market-house and the council-house which
was visited by both Charles I and James II on different occasions are
two of the most fascinating buildings to be seen in the town. There are
scant remains, principally of the keep of the castle, built by the
Norman baron to whom William the Conqueror generously presented the
town. St. Mary is the oldest and most important church, and in some
particulars it surpasses the cathedral at Chester. It is architecturally
more pleasing and its windows are among the finest examples of antique
stained glass in the Kingdom.

We spent some time among the remarkable collection of relics in the
museum, and as they mainly came from the Roman city of Uriconium, we
planned a side-trip to this place, together with Buildwas Abbey and the
old Saxon town of Much Wenlock, all of which are within twenty miles of
Shrewsbury. When we left the Raven Hotel it was raining steadily, but
this no longer deterred us, and after cautiously descending the steep
hill leading out of the town we were soon on the road to Wroxeter, the
village lying adjacent to the Roman ruins. We found these of surprising
extent and could readily believe the statement made in the local
guide-book that a great city was at one time located here. Only a
comparatively small portion has been excavated, but the city enclosed by
the wall covered nearly one square mile. One great piece of wall about
seventy-five feet long and twenty feet in height still stands above
ground to mark the place, but the most remarkable revelations were found
in the excavations. The foundations of a large public building have been
uncovered, and the public baths to which the Romans were so partial are
in a remarkable state of preservation, the tile flooring in some cases
remaining in its original position. There is every indication that the
city was burned and plundered by the wild Welsh tribes sixteen hundred
or more years ago.

A few miles farther, mainly through narrow byways, brought us to
Buildwas Abbey, beautifully situated near the Severn. Evidently this
fine ruin is not much frequented by tourists, for we found no custodian
in charge, and the haunts of the old monks had been converted into a
sheepfold by a neighboring farmer. Yet at one time it was one of the
richest and most extensive monasteries in England. On our return to
Shrewsbury, we passed through Much Wenlock, a very ancient town,
which also has its ruined abbey. It is remarkable how thickly these
monastic institutions were at one time scattered over the Kingdom, and
when one considers what such elaborate establishments must have cost to
build and to maintain, it is easy to understand why, in the ages of
church supremacy, the common people were so miserably poor.


Aside from the places of historic interest that we visited on this trip,
the country through which we passed would have made our half day a
memorable one. Though the continual rain intercepted the view much of
the time, yet from some of the hilltops we had vistas of the Severn
Valley with its winding river that we hardly saw surpassed in a country
famous for lovely landscapes. We regretted later that our stay at
Shrewsbury was so short, for we learned that in the immediate vicinity
there are many other places which might well have occupied our
attention; but in this case, as in many others, we learned afterwards
the things we should have known before our tour began.

Late in the afternoon we started for Ludlow. It was still raining--a
gray day with fitful showers that never entirely ceased but only varied
in intensity. Much of the beauty of the landscape was hidden in the gray
mist, and the distant Welsh hills, rich with soft coloring on clear
days, were entirely lost to us. Yet the gloomy day was not altogether
without its compensation, for if we had visited Stokesay when the
garish sunshine gilded "but to flaunt the ruins gray," we should have
lost much of the impression which we retain of the gloom and desolation
that so appropriately pervaded the unique old manor with its timbered
gatehouse and its odd little church surrounded by thickly set


It was only by an accidental glance at our road-book that we saw
Stokesay Castle as an "object of interest" on this road about eight
miles north of Ludlow. This old house is the finest example in the
Kingdom of a fortified manor as distinguished from a castle, its
defensive feature being a great crenolated tower, evidently built as a
later addition when the manor passed from a well-to-do country gentleman
to a member of the nobility. This is actually the case, for there is on
record a license granted in 1284 to Lawrence de Ludlow permitting him to
"crenolate his house." The house itself was built nearly two hundred
years earlier and was later surrounded by a moat as a further means of
defense. Considering its age, it is in a wonderfully good state of
preservation, the original roof still being intact. We were admitted by
the keeper, who lives in the dilapidated but delightfully picturesque
half-timbered gatehouse. The most notable feature of the old house is
the banqueting hall occupying the greater portion of the first floor,
showing how, in the good old days, provision for hospitality took
precedence over nearly everything else. Some of the apartments on the
second floor retain much of their elaborate oak paneling and there are
several fine mantel-pieces. A narrow, circular stairway leads to the
tower, from which the beauty of the location is at once apparent.
Situated as the mansion is in a lovely valley, bounded by steep and
richly wooded hills at whose base the river Onny flows through luxuriant
meadows, one is compelled to admire the judgment of the ancient founder
who selected the site. It indeed brought us near to the spirit and
customs of feudal times as we wandered about in the gloom of the
deserted apartments. How comfortless the house must have been--from our
standard--even in its best days, with its rough stone floors and rude
furnishings! No fireplace appeared in the banqueting hall, which must
have been warmed by an open fire, perhaps in the center, as in the hall
of Penshurst Place. How little these ancient landmarks were appreciated
until recently is shown by the fact that for many years Stokesay Manor
was used as a blacksmith-shop and a stable for a neighboring farmer. The
present noble proprietor, however, keeps the place in excellent repair
and always open to visitors. In one of the rooms of the tower, is
exhibited a collection of ancient documents relating to the founding of
Stokesay and to its early history.

After visiting hundreds of historic places during our summer's
pilgrimage, the memory of Ludlow, with its quaint, unsullied, old-world
air, its magnificent church, whose melodious chime of bells lingers with
us yet, its great ruined castle, redolent with romance, and its
surrounding country of unmatched interest and beauty, is still the
pleasantest of all. I know that the town has been little visited by
Americans, and that in Baedeker, that Holy Writ of tourists, it is
accorded a scant paragraph in small type. Nevertheless, our deliberately
formed opinion is still that if we could re-visit only one of the
English towns it would be Ludlow. Mr. A.G. Bradley, in his delightful
book, "In the March and Borderland of Wales," which everyone
contemplating a tour of Welsh border towns should read, gives an
appreciation of Ludlow which I am glad to reiterate when he styles it
"the most beautiful and distinguished country town in England." He says:
"There are towns of its size perhaps as quaint and boasting as many
ancient buildings, but they do not crown an eminence amid really
striking scenery, nor yet again share such distinction of type with one
of the finest mediaeval castles in England and one possessed of a
military and political history unique in the annals of British castles.
It is this combination of natural and architectural charm, with its
intense historical interest, that gives Ludlow such peculiar
fascination. Other great border fortresses were centers of military
activities from the Conquest to the Battle of Bosworth, but when Ludlow
laid aside its armour and burst out into graceful Tudor architecture, it
became in a sense the capital of fourteen counties, and remained so for
nearly two hundred years."


We were indeed fortunate in Ludlow, for everything conspired to give us
the best appreciation of the town, and were it not for the opinion of
such an authority as I have quoted, I might have concluded that our
partiality was due to some extent to the circumstances. We had been
directed to a hotel by our host in Shrewsbury, but on inquiring of a
police officer--they are everywhere in Britain--on our arrival in
Ludlow, he did us a great favor by telling us that "The Feathers" hotel
just opposite would please us better. We forthwith drew up in front of
the finest old black and white building which we saw anywhere in the
Kingdom and were given a room whose diamond-paned windows opened toward
church and castle. No modern improvements broke in on our old-time
surroundings--candles lighted us when the long twilight had faded away.

The splendid dark-oak paneling that reached to the ceiling of the dining
room and the richly carved mantel-piece, they told us, were once in
rooms of Ludlow Castle. As we sat at our late dinner, a familiar melody
from the sonorous chimes of the church-tower came through the open
window to our great delight. "O, what a nuisance those bells are," said
the neat waiting maid, "and a bad thing for the town, too. Why, the
commercials all keep away from Ludlow. They can't sleep for the noise."
"Do the chimes ring in the night?" we asked. "At midnight and at four
o'clock in the morning," she said, and I was fearful that we would not
awake. But we did, and the melody in the silence of the night, amid the
surroundings of the quaint old town, awakened a sentiment in us no doubt
quite different from that which vexed the soul of the commercial. But we
felt that credit was due the honest people of Ludlow, who preferred the
music of the sweet-toned bells to sordid business; and, as the maid
said, the bells did not awaken anyone who was used to them--surely a fit
reward to the citizens for their high-minded disregard of mere material

I said we were fortunate at Ludlow. The gray, chilly weather and almost
continual rain which had followed us for the last few days vanished and
the next morning dawned cool and fair, with sky of untainted blue. Our
steps were first turned towards the castle, which we soon reached. There
was no one to admit us. The custodian's booth was closed, but there was
a small gate in the great entrance and we walked in. We had the noble
ruin to ourselves, and a place richer in story and more beautiful and
majestic in decay we did not find elsewhere. A maze of gray walls rose
all around us, but fortunately every part of the ruin bore a printed
card telling us just what we wanted to know. The crumbling walls
surrounded a beautiful lawn, starred with wild flowers--buttercups and
forget-me-nots--and a flock of sheep grazed peacefully in the wide
enclosure. We wandered through the deserted, roofless chambers where
fireplaces with elaborate stone mantels and odd bits of carving told of
the pristine glory of the place. The castle was of great extent,
covering the highest point in Ludlow, and before the day of artillery
must have been well-nigh impregnable. The walls on the side toward the
river rise from a cliff which drops down a sharp incline toward the edge
of the water but leaving room for a delightful foot path between rows of
fine trees. The stern square tower of the keep, the odd circular chapel
with its fine Norman entrance, the great banqueting hall, the elaborate
stone fireplaces and the various apartments celebrated in the story of
the castle interested us most. From the great tower I saw what I still
consider the finest prospect in England, and I had many beautiful views
from similar points of vantage. The day was perfectly clear and the wide
range of vision covered the fertile valleys and wooded hills
interspersed with the villages, the whole country appearing like a vast
beautifully kept park. The story of Ludlow Castle is too long to tell
here, but no one who delights in the romance of the days of chivalry
should fail to familiarize himself with it. The castle was once a royal
residence and the two young princes murdered in London Tower by the
agents of Richard III dwelt here for many years. In 1636 Milton's "Mask
of Comus," suggested by the youthful adventures of the children of the
Lord President, was performed in the castle courtyard. The Lord of the
castle at one time was Henry Sidney, father of Sir Philip, and his
coat-of-arms still remains over one of the entrances. But the story of
love and treason, of how in the absence of the owner of the castle, Maid
Marion admitted her clandestine lover, who brought a hundred armed men
at his back to slay the inmates and capture the fortress, is the saddest
and most tragic of all. We saw high up in the wall, frowning over the
river, the window of the chamber from which she had thrown herself after
slaying her recreant lover in her rage and despair. A weird story it is,
but if the luckless maiden still haunts the scene of her blighted love,
an observant sojourner who fitly writes of Ludlow in poetic phrase never
saw her. "Nearly every midnight for a month," he says, "it fell to me to
traverse the quarter of a mile of dark, lonely lane that leads beneath
the walls of the castle to the falls of the river, and a spot more
calculated to invite the wanderings of a despairing and guilty spirit, I
never saw. But though the savage gray towers far above shone betimes in
the moonlight and the tall trees below rustled weirdly in the night
breeze and the rush of the river over the weir rose and fell as is the
wont of falling water in the silence of the night, I looked in vain for
the wraith of the hapless maiden of the heath and finally gave up the


When we left the castle, though nearly noon, the custodian was still
belated, and we yet owe him sixpence for admittance, which we hope to
pay some time in person. A short walk brought us to the church--"the
finest parish church in England," declares one well qualified to judge.
"Next to the castle," he says, "the glory of Ludlow is its church, which
has not only the advantage of a commanding site but, as already
mentioned, is held to be one of the finest in the country." It is built
of red sandstone and is cruciform in shape, with a lofty and graceful
tower, which is a landmark over miles of country and beautiful from any
point of view. I have already mentioned the chime of bells which flings
its melodies every few hours over the town and which are hung in this
tower. The monuments, the stained-glass windows and the imposing
architecture are scarcely equalled by any other church outside of the

We had made the most of our stay in Ludlow, but it was all too short.
The old town was a revelation to us, as it would be to thousands of our
countrymen who never think of including it in their itinerary. But for
the motor car, it would have remained undiscovered to us. With the great
growth of this method of touring, doubtless thousands of others will
visit the place in the same manner, and be no less pleased than we were.

From Ludlow we had a fine run to Worcester, though the road was
sprinkled with short, steep hills noted "dangerous" in the road-book.
Our fine weather was very transient, for it was raining again when we
reached Worcester. We first directed our steps to the cathedral, but
when nearly there beheld a large sign, "This way to the Royal Porcelain
Works," and the cathedral was forgotten for the time by at least one
member of our party. The Royal Porcelain Works it was, then, for hadn't
we known of Royal Worcester long before we knew there was any
cathedral--or any town, for that matter? It is easy to get to the Royal
Porcelain Works: a huge sign every block will keep you from going astray
and an intelligent guide will show you every detail of the great
establishment for only a sixpence. But it is much harder and more costly
to get away from the Royal Worcester Works, and when we finally did we
were several guineas poorer and were loaded with a box of fragile ware
to excite the suspicions of our amiable customs officials. Nevertheless,
the visit was full of interest. Our guide took us through the great
plant from the very beginning, showing us the raw materials--clay, chalk
and bones--which are ground to a fine powder, mixed to a paste, and
deftly turned into a thousand shapes by the skilled potter. We were
shown how the bowl or vase was burned, shrinking to nearly half its size
in the process. We followed the various steps of manufacture until the
finished ware, hand-painted, and burned many times to bring out the
colors, was ready for shipment. An extensive museum connected with the
works is filled with rare specimens to delight the soul of the admirer
of the keramic art. There were samples of the notable sets of tableware
manufactured for nearly every one of the crowned heads of Europe during
the last century, gorgeous vases of fabulous value, and rare and curious
pieces without number.

When we left the porcelain works it was too late to get into the
cathedral, and when we were ready to start in the morning it was too
early. So we contented ourselves with driving the car around the noble
pile and viewing the exterior from every angle. We took the word of
honest Baedeker that the interior is one of the most elaborate and
artistic in England but largely the result of modern restoration. The
cathedral contains the tomb of King John, who requested that he be
buried here, though his life was certainly not such as to merit the
distinction. Here, too, is buried the elder brother of King Henry VIII,
Prince Arthur, who died at Ludlow Castle in 1502; and had he lived to be
king in place of the strenuous Henry, who can say what changes might
have been recorded in English history? All these we missed; nor did we
satisfy ourselves personally of the correctness of the claim that the
original entry of the marriage contract of William Shakespeare and Anne
Hathaway is on file in the diocese office near the gateway of the
cathedral. Along with the other notable places of the town mentioned in
the guide-book as worthy of a visit is the great factory where the fiery
Worcestershire sauce is concocted, but this did not appeal to our
imagination as did the porcelain works. Our early start and the fine,
nearly level road brought us to Stratford-upon-Avon well before noon.
Here we did little more than re-visit the shrines of Shakespeare--the
church, the birthplace, the grammar school--all familiar to the
English-speaking world. Nor did we forget the Red Horse Inn at luncheon
time, finding it much less crowded than on our previous visit, for we
were still well in advance of the tourist season. After luncheon we were
lured into a shop across the street by the broad assurance made on an
exceedingly conspicuous sign that it is the "largest souvenir store on
earth." Here we hoped to secure a few mementos of our visit to Stratford
by motor car. We fell into a conversation with the proprietor, a genial,
white-haired old gentleman, who, we learned, had been Mayor of the town
for many years--and is it not a rare distinction to be Mayor of
Shakespeare's Stratford? The old gentleman bore his honors lightly
indeed, for he said he had insistently declined the office but the
people wouldn't take no for an answer.

It is only a few miles to Warwick over winding roads as beautiful as any
in England. One of these leads past Charlecote, famous for Shakespeare's
deer-stealing episode, but no longer open to the public. We passed
through Warwick--which reminded us of Ludlow except for the former's
magnificent situation--without pausing, a thing which no one would do
who had not visited that quaint old town some time before. In
Leamington, three miles farther on, we found a modern city of forty
thousand inhabitants, noted as a resort and full of pretentious hotels.
After we were located at the Manor House there was still time for a
drive to Kenilworth Castle, five miles away, to which a second visit was
even more delightful than our previous one. For the next day we had
planned a circular tour of Warwickshire, but a driving, all-day rain
and, still more, the indisposition of one of our party, confined us to
our hotel. Our disappointment was considerable, for within easy reach
of Leamington there were many places that we had planned to visit. Ashow
Church, Stoneleigh Abbey, George Eliot's birthplace and home near
Nuneaton, the cottage of Mary Arden, mother of Shakespeare, Rugby, with
its famous school, and Maxstoke Castle--an extensive and picturesque
ruin--are all within a few miles of Leamington.

From Leamington to London was nearly an all-day's run, although the
distance is only one hundred miles. A repair to the car delayed us and
we went several miles astray on the road. It would have been easier to
have returned over the Holyhead Road, but our desire to see more of the
country led us to take a route nearly parallel to this, averaging about
fifteen miles to the southward. Much of the way this ran through narrow
byways and the country generally lacked interest. We passed through
Banbury, whose cross, famous in nursery rhyme, is only modern. At
Waddesdon we saw the most up-to-date and best ordered village we came
across in England, with a fine new hotel, the Five Arrows, glittering in
fresh paint. We learned that this village was built and practically
owned by Baron Rothschild, and just adjoining it was the estate which he
had laid out. The gentleman of whom we inquired courteously offered to
take us into the great park, and we learned that he was the head
landscape gardener. The palace is modern, of Gothic architecture, and
crowns an eminence in the park. It contains a picture gallery, with
examples of the works of many great masters, which is open to the public
on stated days of the week.

On reaching London, we found that our tour of the Midlands had covered a
little less than eight hundred miles, which shows how much that distance
means in Britain when measured in places of historic and literary
importance, of which we really visited only a few of those directly on
the route of our journey or lying easily adjacent to it.



The road from London to Southampton is one of the oldest in the Kingdom
and passes many places of historic interest. In early days this highway,
leading from one of the main seaports through the ancient Saxon capital,
was of great importance. Over this road we began the trip suggested by
the Touring Secretary of the Motor Union. As usual, we were late in
getting started and it was well after noon when we were clear of the
city. At Kingston-on-Thames, practically a suburb, filled with villas of
wealthy Londoners, we stopped for lunch at the Griffin Hotel, a fine old
inn whose antiquity was not considered sufficient to atone for bad
service, which was sometimes the case. Kingston has a history as ancient
as that of the capital itself. Its name is peculiar in that it was not
derived from King's Town, but from King's Stone; and at the town
crossing is the identical stone, so says tradition, upon which the Saxon
kings were crowned. It would seem to one that this historic bit of rock
would form a more fitting pedestal for the English coronation chair than
the old Scottish stone from Dunstafnage Castle.

After a short run from Kingston, we passed down High Street, Guildford,
which, a well qualified authority declares, is "one of the most
picturesque streets in England." Guildford might well detain for a day
or more anyone whose time will permit him to travel more leisurely than
ours did. William Cobbett, the author and philosopher, who was born and
lived many years near by, declared it "the happiest looking town he ever
knew"--just why, I do not know. The street with the huge town clock
projecting half way across on one side, the Seventeenth Century Town
Hall with its massive Greek portico on the other, and a queerly assorted
row of many-gabled buildings following its winding way, looked odd
enough, but as to Guildford's happiness, a closer acquaintance would be

Shortly after leaving the town, the ascent of a two-mile hill brought us
to a stretch of upland road which ran for several miles along a
tableland lying between pleasantly diversified valleys sloping on either
side. From this a long, gradual descent led directly into Farnham, the
native town of William Cobbett. The house where he was born and lived as
a boy is still standing as "The Jolly Farmers' Inn." One may see the
little house which was the birthplace of the Rev. Augustus Toplady,
whose hymn, "Rock of Ages," has gained world-wide fame. On the hill
overlooking the town is the ancient castle, rebuilt in the Sixteenth
Century and from that time one of the palaces of the bishops of
Winchester. Here, too, lingers one of the ubiquitous traditions of King
Charles I, who stopped at Vernon House in West Street while a prisoner
in the hands of the Parliamentarians on their way to London. A silk cap
which the king presented to his host is proudly shown by one of the
latter's descendants, who is now owner of the house.

One must be well posted on his route when touring Britain or he will
pass many things of note in sublime ignorance of their existence. Even
the road-book is not an infallible guide, for we first knew that we were
passing through Chawton when the postoffice sign, on the main street of
a straggling village, arrested our attention. We were thus reminded that
in this quiet little place the inimitable Jane Austin had lived and
produced her most notable novels, which are far more appreciated now
than in the lifetime of the authoress. An old woman of whom we inquired
pointed out the house--a large square building with tiled roof, now used
as the home of a workingmen's club. Less than two miles from Chawton,
though not on the Winchester road, is Selborne, the home of Gilbert
White, the naturalist, and famed as one of the quaintest and most
retired villages in Hampshire.

But one would linger long on the way if he paused at every landmark on
the Southampton road. We had already loitered in the short distance
which we had traveled until it was growing late, and with open throttle
our car rapidly covered the last twenty miles of the fine road leading
into Winchester.

From an historical point of view, no town in the Kingdom surpasses the
proud old city of Winchester. The Saxon capital still remembers her
ancient splendor and it was with a manifest touch of pride that the old
verger who guided us through the cathedral dwelt on the long line of
kings who had reigned at Winchester before the Norman conquest. To him,
London at best was only an upstart and an usurper. Why,

    "When Oxford was shambles
    And Westminster was brambles,
    Winchester was in her glory."

And her glory has never departed from her and never will so long as her
great cathedral stands intact, guarding its age-long line of proud
traditions. The exterior is not altogether pleasing--the length
exceeding that of any cathedral in Europe, together with the abbreviated
tower, impresses one with a painful sense of lack of completeness and a
failure of proper proportion. It has not the splendid site of Durham or
Lincoln, the majesty of the massive tower of Canterbury, or the grace of
the great spire of Salisbury. But its interior makes full amends. No
cathedral in all England can approach it in elaborate carvings and
furnishings or in interesting relics and memorials. Here lie the bones
of the Saxon King Ethelwulf, father of Alfred the Great; of Canute,
whose sturdy common sense silenced his flatterers; and of many others. A
scion of the usurping Norman sleeps here too, in the tomb where William
Rufus was buried, "with many looking on and few grieving." In the north
aisle a memorial stone covers the grave of Jane Austen and a great
window to her memory sends its many-colored shafts of light from above.
In the south transept rests Ike Walton, prince of fishermen, who, it
would seem to us, must have slept more peacefully by some rippling
brook. During the Parliamentary wars Winchester was a storm center and
the cathedral suffered severely at the hands of the Parliamentarians.
Yet fortunately, many of its ancient monuments and furnishings escaped
the wrath of the Roundhead iconoclasts. The cathedral is one of the
oldest in England, having been mainly built in the Ninth Century.
Recently it has been discovered that the foundations are giving away to
an extent that makes extensive restoration necessary, but it will be
only restored and not altered in any way.

But we may not pause long to tell the story of even Winchester Cathedral
in this hasty record of a motor flight through Britain. And, speaking
of the motor car, ardent devotee as I am, I could not help feeling a
painful sense of the inappropriateness of its presence in Winchester; of
its rush through the streets at all hours of the night; of its clatter
as it climbed the steep hills in the town; of the blast of its unmusical
horn; and of its glaring lights, falling weirdly on the old buildings.
It seemed an intruder in the capital of King Alfred.

There is much else in Winchester, though the cathedral and its
associations may overshadow everything. The college, one of the earliest
educational institutions in the Kingdom, was founded about 1300, and
many of the original buildings stand almost unchanged. The abbey has
vanished, though the grounds still serve as a public garden; and of
Wolvesley Palace, a castle built in 1138, only the keep still stands.
How usual this saying, "Only the keep still stands," becomes of English
castles,--thanks to the old builders who made the keep strong and high
to withstand time, and so difficult to tear down that it escaped the
looters of the ages.

A day might well be given to the vicinity of Winchester, which teems
with points of literary and historic interest. In any event, one should
visit Twyford, only three miles away, often known as the "queen of the
Hampshire villages" and famous for the finest yew tree in England. It is
of especial interest to Americans, since Benjamin Franklin wrote his
autobiography here while a guest of Dr. Shipley, Vicar of St. Asaph,
whose house, a fine Elizabethan mansion, still stands.

To Salisbury by way of Romsey is a fine drive of about thirty miles over
good roads and through a very pleasing country. Long before we reached
the town there rose into view its great cathedral spire, the loftiest
and most graceful in Britain, a striking landmark from the country for
miles around. Following the winding road and passing through the narrow
gateway entering High Street, we came directly upon this magnificent
church, certainly the most harmonious in design of any in the Kingdom.
The situation, too, is unique, the cathedral standing entirely separate
from any other building, its gray walls and buttresses rising sheer up
from velvety turf such as is seen in England alone. It was planned and
completed within the space of fifty years, which accounts for its
uniformity of style; while the construction of most of the cathedrals
ran through the centuries with various architecture in vogue at
different periods. The interior, however, lacks interest, and the
absence of stained glass gives an air of coldness. It seems almost
unbelievable that the original stained windows were deliberately
destroyed at the end of the Eighteenth Century by a so-called architect,
James Wyatt, who had the restoration of the cathedral in charge. To his
everlasting infamy, "Wyatt swept away screens, chapels and porches,
desecrated and destroyed the tombs of warriors and prelates, obliterated
ancient paintings; flung stained glass by cart loads into the city
ditch; and razed to the ground the beautiful old campanile which stood
opposite the north porch." That such desecration should be permitted in
a civilized country only a century ago indeed seems incredible.


From Water Color by Noelsmith.]

No one who visits Salisbury will forget Stonehenge, the most remarkable
relic of prehistoric man to be found in Britain. Nearly everyone is
familiar with pictures of this solitary circle of stones standing on an
eminence of Salisbury Plain, but one who has not stood in the shadow of
these gigantic monoliths can have no idea of their rugged grandeur.
Their mystery is deeper than that of Egypt's sphynx, for we know
something of early Egyptian history, but the very memory of the men who
reared the stones on Salisbury Plain is forgotten. Who they were, why
they built this strange temple, or how they brought for long distances
these massive rocks that would tax modern resources to transport, we
have scarcely a hint. The stones stand in two concentric circles, those
of the inner ring being about half the height of the outer ones. Some of
the stones are more than twenty feet high and extend several feet into
the ground. There are certain signs which seem to indicate that
Stonehenge was the temple of some early sun-worshiping race, and Sir
Norman Lockyer, who has made a special study of the subject, places the
date of construction about 1680 B.C. No similar stone is found in the
vicinity; hence it is proof positive that the builders of Stonehenge
must have transported the enormous monoliths for many miles. The place
lies about eight miles north of Salisbury. We went over a rather lonely
and uninteresting road by the way of Amesbury, which is two miles from
Stonehenge. We returned by a more picturesque route, following the River
Avon to Salisbury and passing through Millston, a quaint little village
where Joseph Addison was born in 1672.

A few miles south of Salisbury we entered New Forest, an ancient royal
hunting domain covering nearly three hundred square miles and containing
much of the most pleasing woodland scenery in England. This is extremely
diversified but always beautiful. Glades and reaches of gentle park and
meadow and open, heathlike stretches contrast wonderfully with the dark
masses of huge oaks and beeches, under some of which daylight never
penetrates. We stopped for the night at Lyndhurst, directly in the
center of the forest and sometimes called the capital of New Forest. It
looks strangely new for an English town, and the large church, built of
red brick and white stone, shows its recent origin. In this church is
a remarkable altar fresco which was executed by the late Lord Leighton.
The fine roads and splendid scenery might occupy at least a day if time
permitted; but if, like us, one must hasten onward, a run over the main
roads of New Forest will give opportunity to see much of its sylvan

[Illustration: A GLADE IN NEW FOREST.]

Our route next day through the narrow byways of Dorsetshire was a
meandering one. From Lyndhurst we passed through Christchurch, Blandford
and Dorchester and came for the night to Yeovil. We passed through no
place of especial note, but no day of our tour afforded us a better idea
of the more retired rural sections of England. By the roadside
everywhere were the thatched roof cottages with their flower gardens,
and here and there was an ancient village which to all appearances might
have been standing quite the same when the Conqueror landed in Britain.
Oftentimes the byways were wide enough for only one vehicle, but were
slightly broadened in places to afford opportunity for passing. Many of
the crossings lacked the familiar sign-boards, and the winding byways,
with nothing but the map for a guide, were often confusing, and sharp
turns between high hedges made careful driving necessary. At times we
passed between avenues of tall trees and again unexpectedly dropped into
some quiet village nestling in the Dorset hills. One of the quaintest of
these, not even mentioned in Baedeker, is Cerne Abbas, a straggling
village through which the road twisted along--a little old-world
community, seemingly severed from modern conditions by centuries. It
rather lacked the cozy picturesqueness of many English villages. It
seemed to us that it wanted much of the bloom and shrubbery. Everywhere
were the gray stone houses with thatched roofs, sagging walls and odd
little windows with square or diamond-shaped panes set in iron
casements. Nowhere was there a structure that had the slightest taint of
newness. The place is quite unique. I do not recall another village that
impressed us in just the same way. Our car seemed strangely out of place
as it cautiously followed the crooked main street of the town, and the
attention bestowed on it by the smaller natives indicated that a motor
was not a common sight in Cerne Abbas. Indeed, we should have missed it
ourselves had we not wandered from the main road into a narrow lane that
led to the village. While we much enjoyed our day in the Dorset byways,
our progress had necessarily been slow.

In Yeovil, we found an old English town apparently without any important
history, but a prosperous center for a rich farming country. The place
is neat and clean and has a beautifully kept public park--a feature of
which the average English town appears more appreciative than the small
American city.

From Yeovil to Torquay, through Exeter, with a stop at the latter place,
was an unusually good day's run. The road was more hilly than any we had
passed over heretofore, not a few of the grades being styled
"dangerous," and we had been warned by an English friend that we should
find difficult roads and steep hills in Devon and Cornwall. However, to
one who had driven over some of our worst American roads, even the "bad"
roads of England looked good, and the "dangerous" hills, with their
smooth surface and generally uniform grade, were easy for our
moderate-powered motor.

Exeter enjoys the distinction of having continuously been the site of a
town or city for a longer period than is recorded of any other place in
England. During the Roman occupation it was known as a city, and it is
believed that the streets, which are more regular than usual and which
generally cross each other at right angles, were first laid out by the
Romans. It is an important town of about fifty thousand inhabitants,
with thriving trade and manufactures, and modern improvements are in
evidence everywhere.

The cathedral, though not one of the largest or most imposing, is
remarkable for the elaborate carving of the exterior. The west front is
literally covered with life-sized statues set in niches in the wall, but
the figures are all sadly time-worn, many of them having almost
crumbled away. Evidently the Roundheads were considerate of Exeter
Cathedral that such a host of effigies escaped destruction at their
hands; and they were not very well disposed towards Exeter, either, as
it was always a Royalist stronghold. Possibly it was spared because the
Cromwellians found it useful as a place of worship, and in order to
obtain peace and harmony between the two factions of the army the
cathedral was divided into two portions by a high brick wall through the
center, the Independents holding forth on one side and the Presbyterians
on the other.

The road from Exeter to Torquay follows the coast for some distance,
affording many fine views of the ocean. We were now in the "limestone
country," and the roads are exceedingly dusty in dry weather. The dust,
in the form of a fine white powder, covers the trees and vegetation,
giving the country here and there an almost ghostly appearance. No
wonder that in this particular section there is considerable prejudice
against the motor on account of its great propensity to stir up the
dust. So far as we ourselves were concerned, we usually left it behind
us, and it troubled us only when some other car got in ahead of us.

Torquay is England's Palm Beach--a seacoast-resort town where the
temperature rarely falls below forty degrees, thanks to the warm current
of the Gulf Stream; and where the sea breezes keep down the summer
heat, which seldom rises above sixty degrees. It is especially a winter
resort, although the hotels keep open during the year. Most of the town
is finely situated on a high promontory overlooking a beautiful harbor,
studded with islands and detached rocks that half remind one of Capri.
From our hotel window we had a glorious ocean view, made the more
interesting for the time being by a dozen of King Edward's men-of-war,
supposed to be defending Torquay against "the enemy" of a mimic naval

On the opposite side of Tor Bay is the quiet little fishing village of
Brixham, the landing-place of Prince William of Orange. We reached here
early on a fine June day when everything was fresh after heavy showers
during the night. The houses rise in terraces up the sharp hillside
fronting the harbor, which was literally a forest of fishing-boat masts.
A rather crude stone statue of William stands on the quay and a brass
foot-print on the shore marks the exact spot where the Dutch prince
first set foot in England, accompanied by an army of thirteen thousand
men. Our car attracted a number of urchins, who crowded around it and,
though we left it unguarded for an hour or more to go out on the
sea-wall and look about the town, not one of the fisher lads ventured to
touch it or to molest anything--an instance of the law-abiding spirit
which we found everywhere in England.

From Brixham, an hour's drive over bad roads brought us to Dartmouth,
whither we had been attracted by the enthusiastic language of an English
writer who asserts that "There is scarcely a more romantic spot in the
whole of England than Dartmouth. Spread out on one of the steep slopes
of the Dart, it overlooks the deep-set river toward the sea. Steep
wooded banks rising out of the water's edge give the winding of the
estuaries a solemn mystery which is wanting in meadows and plough-land.
In the midst of scenery of this character--and it must have been richer
still a few centuries back--the inhabitants of Dartmouth made its

As we approached the town, the road continually grew worse until it was
little better than the average unimproved country highway in America,
and the sharp loose stones everywhere were ruinous on tires. It finally
plunged sharply down to a steamboat ferry, over which we crossed the
Dart and landed directly in the town. There are few towns in England
more charmingly located than old Dartmouth, and a hundred years ago it
was an important seaport, dividing honors about equally with Plymouth.

The road to Dartmouth was unusually trying; the route which we took to
Plymouth was by odds the worst of equal distance we found anywhere. We
began with a precipitous climb out of the town, up a very steep hill
over a mile long, with many sharp turns that made the ascent all the
more difficult. We were speedily lost in a network of unmarked byways
running through a distressingly poor-looking and apparently quite thinly
inhabited country. After a deal of studying the map and the infrequent
sign-boards we brought up in a desolate-looking little village, merely a
row of gray stone, slate-roofed houses on either side of the way, and
devoid of a single touch of the picturesque which so often atones for
the poverty of the English cottages. No plot of shrubbery or
flower-garden broke the gray monotony of the place. We had seen nothing
just like it in England, though some of the Scotch villages which we saw
later, matched it very well.

Here a native gave us the cheerful information that we had come over the
very road we should not have taken; that just ahead of us was a hill
where the infrequent motor cars generally stalled, but he thought that a
good strong car could make it all right. Our car tackled the hill
bravely enough, but slowed to a stop before reaching the summit; but by
unloading everybody except the driver, and with more or less coaxing and
adjusting, it was induced to try it again, with a rush that carried it
through. The grade, though very steep, was not so much of an obstacle
as the deep sand, with which the road was covered. We encountered many
steep hills and passed villages nearly as unprepossessing as the first
one before we came to the main Plymouth-Exeter road, as excellent a
highway as one could wish. It was over this that our route had
originally been outlined, but our spirit of adventure led us into the
digression I have tried to describe. It was trying at the time, but we
saw a phase of England that we otherwise would have missed and have no
regrets for the strenuous day in the Devonshire byways.

Plymouth, with the adjoining towns of Devonport and Stonehouse, is one
of the most important seaports in the Kingdom, the combined population
being about two hundred thousand. The harbor is one of the best and
affords safe anchorage for the largest ocean-going vessels. It is
protected by a stupendous granite breakwater, costing many millions and
affording a delightful promenade on a fine day. Plymouth is the
principal government naval port and its ocean commerce is gaining
rapidly on that of Liverpool. To Americans it appeals chiefly on account
of its connection with the Pilgrim Fathers, who sailed from its harbor
on the Mayflower in 1620. A granite block set in the pier near the
oldest part of the city is supposed to mark the exact spot of
departure of the gallant little ship on the hazardous voyage, whose
momentous outcome was not then dreamed of. I could not help thinking
what a fine opportunity is offered here for some patriotic American
millionaire to erect a suitable memorial to commemorate the sailing of
the little ship, fraught with its wonderful destiny. The half day spent
about the old city was full of interest; but the places which we missed
would make a most discouraging list. It made us feel that one ought to
have two or three years to explore Britain instead of a single summer's

[Illustration: ROCKS OFF CORNWALL.

From Painting by Warne Browne. Exhibited 1906 Royal Academy.]

From Plymouth to Penzance through Truro runs the finest road in
Cornwall, broad, well kept and with few steep grades. It passes through
a beautiful section and is bordered in many places by the immense parks
of country estates. In some of these the woods were seemingly left in
their natural wild state, though close inspection showed how carefully
this appearance was maintained by judicious landscape gardening. In many
of the parks, the rhododendrons were in full bloom, and their rich
masses of color wonderfully enlivened the scenery. Everything was fresh
and bright. It had been raining heavily the night before and the air was
free from the dust that had previously annoyed us. It would be hard to
imagine anything more inspiring than the vistas which opened to us as we
sped along. The road usually followed the hills in gentle curves, but
at places it rose to splendid points of vantage from which to view the
delightful valleys. Then again it lost itself under great over-arching
trees, and as we came too rapidly down a steep hill on entering Bodmin,
the road was so heavily shaded that we were near our undoing. The loose
sand had been piled up by the rain and the dense shade prevented the
road from drying. The car took a frightful skid and by a mere hair's
breadth escaped disastrous collision with a stone wall--but we learned

After leaving Truro, an ancient town with a recently established
cathedral, the road to Penzance, though excellent, is without special
interest. It passes through the copper-mining section of Cornwall and
the country is dotted with abandoned mines. A few are still operated,
but it has come to the point where, as a certain Englishman has said,
"Cornwall must go to Nevada for her copper," and there are more Cornish
miners in the western states than there are in their native shire.

Penzance is another of the South of England resort towns and is
beautifully situated on Mounts Bay. One indeed wonders at the great
number of seacoast resorts in Britain, but we must remember that there
are forty millions of people in the Kingdom who need breathing places as
well as a number of Americans who come to these resorts. The hotels at
these places are generally excellent from the English point of view,
which differs somewhat from the American. Probably there is no one point
on which the difference is greater than the precise temperature that
constitutes personal comfort and makes a fire in the room necessary. On
a chilly, muggy day when an American shivers and calls for a fire in the
generally diminutive grate in his room, the native enjoys himself or
even complains of the heat, and is astonished at his thin-skinned
cousin, who must have his room--according to the British notion--heated
to suffocation. The hotel manager always makes a very adequate charge
for fires in guest-rooms and is generally chary about warming the
corridors or public parts of the hotel. In one of the large London
hotels which actually boasts of steam heat in the hallways, we were
amazed on a chilly May day to find the pipes warm and a fine fire
blazing in the great fireplace in the lobby. The chambermaid explained
the astonishing phenomenon: the week before several Americans had
complained frequently of the frigid atmosphere of the place without
exciting much sympathy from the management, but after they had left the
hotel, it was taken as an evidence of good faith and the heat was turned
on. But this digression has taken me so far away from Penzance that I
may as well close this chapter with it.



In following a five-thousand-mile motor journey through Britain, there
will be little to say of Penzance, a pleasant resort town, yet without
anything of notable importance. A mile farther down the coast is Newlyn,
a fishing-village which has become a noted resort for artists and has
given its name to a school of modern painting. A handsome building for a
gallery and art institute, and which also serves as headquarters for the
artists, has recently been erected by a wealthy benefactor. We walked
over to the village, hoping to learn that the fisher-fleet would be in
the next morning, but were disappointed. A man of whom we inquired
informed us that the fishermen would not bring in their catch until two
days later. He seemed to recognize at once that we were
strangers--Americans, they all know it intuitively--and left his task to
show us about the immense quay where the fishermen dispose of their
catch at auction. He conducted us out on the granite wall, built by the
Government to enclose the harbor and insuring the safety of the
fisher-fleet in fiercest storms. He had been a deep-sea fisherman
himself and told us much of the life of these sturdy fellows and the
hardships they endure for little pay.

[Illustration: NEAR LAND'S END.

From Water Color by Wm. T. Richards.]

The ordinary fishing boat is manned by five or six men and makes two
trips each week to the deep-sea fishing "grounds," seventy-five to one
hundred miles away. The craft is rude and comfortless in the extreme and
so constructed as to be nearly unsinkable if kept off the rocks. The
fish are taken by trawling great nets and drawing them aboard with a
special tackle. The principal catch of the Newlyn fishermen is herring,
which are pickled in the village and exported, mainly to Norway and
Sweden. The value of the fish depends on the state of the market, and
the price realized is often as low as a shilling per hundred weight. The
majority of the population of Cornwall is engaged directly or indirectly
in the fisheries, and considering the inferiority of most of the country
for agriculture and the extensive coast line with its numerous harbors,
it is not strange that so many of the natives should follow this life.
In earlier days, smuggling and wrecking constituted the occupation of a
large number of the Cornishmen, but under modern conditions these gentle
arts can no longer be successfully practiced, and fishing furnishes
about the only alternative.

Just across the peninsula is St. Ives, another fishing village, even
more picturesque than Newlyn and quite as much in favor with the
artists. To reach this town we turned a few miles from the main road on
the following day, but missed the fisher-fleet as before. The bay on
which St. Ives is situated is the most beautiful on the Cornish coast,
and on the day of our visit the bright stretch of water, sleeping
placidly under the June skies and dotted with glistening sails, well
maintained its reputation for surpassing loveliness. Before we entered
the town a man of whom we inquired the way advised us to leave our car
and walk down the sharp descent to the coast, where the village mostly
lies. The idea of the return trip was not pleasing, and we boldly
started down, only to wish we had been more amenable to the friendly
advice, for a steeper, narrower, crookeder street we did not find
anywhere. In places it was too narrow for vehicles to pass abreast, and
sharp turns on a very steep grade, in streets crowded with children,
made the descent exceedingly trying. However, we managed to get through
safely and came to a stop directly in front of the Fifteenth Century
church, an astonishingly imposing structure for a village which showed
more evidences of poverty than of anything else. The church was built at
a time when the smugglers and wreckers of Cornwall no doubt enjoyed
greater prosperity and felt, perhaps, more anxiety for their souls'
welfare than do their fisher-folk descendants.

On re-ascending the hill we stopped at the Castle for our noonday
luncheon, but the castle in this instance is a fine old mansion built
about a hundred years ago as a private residence and since passed into
the possession of a railway company, which has converted it into an
excellent hotel. Situated as it is, in a fine park on the eminence
overlooking the bay, few hostelries at which we paused seemed more
inviting for a longer sojourn.

Four miles from Penzance is Marazion, and St. Michael's Mount, lying
near at hand, takes its name from the similar but larger and more
imposing cathedral-crowned headland off the coast of France. It is a
remarkable granite rock, connected with the mainland by a strip of sand,
which is clear of the water only four hours of the day. The rock towers
to a height of two hundred and fifty feet and is about a mile in
circumference. It is not strange that in the days of castle-building
such an isolated site should have been seized upon; and on the summit is
a many-towered structure built of granite and so carefully adapted to
its location as to seem almost a part of the rock itself. When we
reached Marazion, the receding tide had left the causeway dry, and as we
walked leisurely the mile or so between the town and the mount, the
water was already stealthily encroaching on the pathway. We found the
castle more of a gentleman's residence than a fortress, and it was
evidently never intended for defensive purposes. It has been the
residence of the St. Aubyn family since the time of Charles II, and the
villagers were all agog over elaborate preparations to celebrate the
golden wedding anniversary of the present proprietor. The climb is a
wearisome one, and we saw little of the castle, being admitted only to
the entrance-hall and the small Gothic chapel, which was undergoing
restoration; but the fine view from the battlements alone is worth the
effort. The castle never figured in history and is remarkable chiefly
for its unique location. By the time of our return the tide had already
risen several feet and we were rowed to the mainland in a boat.

On our return to Truro we took the road by which we came, but on leaving
there our road roughly followed the Northern Cornish coast, and at
intervals we caught glimpses of the ocean. For some distance we ran
through a rough moorland country, although the road was comparatively
level and straight. We passed Camelford--which some say is the Camelot
of the Arthur legends--only five miles distant from the ruins of
Tintagel Castle on the coast, and came early to Launceston, where the
clean hospitable-looking White Hart Hotel offered strong inducements to
stop for the night. A certain weariness of the flesh, resulting from our
run over the last long stretch of the moorland road, was an equally
important factor in influencing our action.

[Illustration: ON DARTMOOR.

From Water Color by Vincent.]

Launceston was one of the surprises that we frequently came across--a
town that we had never heard of before and doubtless one that an
American seldom sees. Yet the massive castle, whose circular keep crowns
an eminence overlooking the town, was one of the objects that loomed
into view long before we reached the place, and its gloomy grandeur, as
we wandered through its ruins in the fading twilight, deeply impressed
us. A rude stairway led to the top of the great circular tower, rising
high above the summit of the hill, which itself dominates the country,
and the view stretching away in every direction was far-reaching and
varied. The castle has been gradually falling into ruin for the last six
hundred years, but in its palmy days it must have been one of the
grimmest and most awe-inspiring of the fortresses in the west country.
Scarcely another ruin did we see anywhere more imposing in location and
more picturesque in decay. Masses of ivy clung to the crumbling walls
and all around spread a beautiful park, with soft, velvety turf
interspersed with shrubbery and bright dashes of color from numerous
well cared-for flower beds.

Not less unique is St. Steven's church, the like of which is not to be
found elsewhere in Britain. Its walls are covered with a network of fine
carving, vine and flower running riot in stone, and they told us that
this was done by English stonecutters, though nearly all such carving
on the cathedrals was the work of artisans from the continent. The
Launceston church is pointed to as an evidence that English workmen
could have done quite as well had they been given the chance. Aside from
this wonderful carving, which covers almost every stone of the exterior,
the church is an imposing one and has lately been restored to its
pristine magnificence. Launceston had its abbey, too, but this has long
since disappeared, and all that now remains of it is the finely carved
Norman doorway built into the entrance of the White Hart Hotel.

Our next day's run was short, covering only forty-two miles between
Launceston and Exeter. For about half the distance the road runs along
the edge of Dartmoor, the greatest of English moorlands. A motor trip of
two or three days through the moor itself would be time well spent, for
it abounds in romantic scenery. The road which we followed is a good
one, though broken into numerous steep hills, but a part of the way we
might as well have been traveling through a tunnel so far as seeing the
country was concerned. A large proportion of the fences are made of
earth piled up four or five feet high, and on the top of this ridge are
planted the hedges, generally reaching three or four feet higher. There
were times when we could catch only an occasional glimpse of the
landscape, and if such fences were everywhere in England they would be
a serious deterrent upon motoring. Fortunately, they prevail in a
comparatively small section, for we did not find them outside of
Cornwall and Devon. This experience served to impress on us how much we
lost when the English landscapes were hidden--that the vistas which
flitted past us as we hurried along were among the pleasantest features
of our journey. It was little short of distressing to have mud fences
shut from view some of the most fascinating country through which we

The greatest part of the day we spent in Exeter. The Rougemont Hotel,
where we stopped for the night, is spacious and comfortable, and a
series of stained-glass windows at the head of the great staircase tells
the story of Richard Ill's connection with Exeter; how, according to
Shakespeare's play, the Rougemont of Exeter recalled to the king's
superstitious mind an ancient prophecy of his defeat at the hands of
Richmond, later Henry VII.

Leaving Exeter early, we planned to reach Bath in the evening--only
eighty-one miles over an almost perfect road--not a very long run so far
as actual distance is concerned, but entirely too long considering the
places of unusual interest that lie along the way. We passed through the
little town of Wellington, noted chiefly for giving his title to the
Iron Duke, and it commemorates its great namesake by a lofty column
reared on one of the adjacent hills.

No town in Britain has an ecclesiastical history more important than
Glastonbury, whose tradition stretches back to the very beginning of
Christianity in the Island. Legend has it that St. Joseph of Arimathea,
who begged the body of Christ and buried it, came here in the year 63
and was the founder of the abbey. He brought with him, tradition says,
the Holy Grail; and a thorn-tree staff which he planted in the abbey
grounds became a splendid tree, revered for many centuries as the Holy
Thorn. The original tree has vanished, though there is a circumstantial
story that it was standing in the time of Cromwell and that a Puritan
who undertook to cut it down as savoring of idolatry had an eye put out
by a flying chip and was dangerously wounded by his axe-head flying off
and striking him. With its awe-inspiring traditions--for which,
fortunately, proof was not required--it is not strange that Glastonbury
for many centuries was the greatest and most powerful ecclesiastical
establishment in the Kingdom. The buildings at one time covered sixty
acres, and many hundreds of monks and dignitaries exerted influence on
temporal as well as ecclesiastical affairs. It is rather significant
that it passed through the Norman Conquest unscathed; not even the
greedy conquerors dared invade the sanctity of Glastonbury Abbey. The
revenue at that time is said to have been about fifty thousand pounds
yearly and the value of a pound then would equal twenty-five to fifty of
our American dollars. However much the Normans respected the place, its
sanctity had no terrors for the rapacious Henry VIII. The rich revenues
appealed too strongly and he made a clean sweep, hanging the mitered
abbot and two of his monks on the top of Tor Hill. The Abbey is the
traditional burial-place of King Arthur and Queen Guinevere, and four of
the Saxon kings sleep in unmarked graves within its precincts.
Considering its once vast extent, the remaining ruins are scanty,
although enough is left to show how imposing and elaborate it must have
been in its palmy days. And there are few places in the Kingdom where
one is so impressed with the spirit of the ancient order of things as
when surrounded by the crumbling walls of Glastonbury Abbey.


At Wells is the cathedral that gives the town an excuse for existence.
Although one of the smallest of these great English churches, it is in
many respects one of the most symmetrical and beautiful. Its glory is
centered chiefly in its west front, with deep buttresses and many
sculptured images of kings and saints. We had only an unsatisfactory
glimpse of the interior, as services happened to be in progress. The
town of Wells is a mere adjunct to the cathedral. It has no history of
its own; no great family has ever lived there; and it can claim no
glory as the birthplace of distinguished sons. Still it has a distinct
charm as a quiet little Somersetshire town which has preserved its
antiquity and fascination. Its name is taken from the natural wells
still found in the garden of the Bishop's palace.

Bath, though it has the most remarkable Roman relics in the Kingdom, is
largely modern. It is now a city of fifty thousand and dates its rise
from the patronage of royalty a century and a half ago. It is one of the
towns that a motorist could scarcely miss if he wished--so many fine
roads lead into it--and I shall not attempt especial comment on a place
so well known. Yet, as in our case, it may be a revelation to many who
know of it in a general way but have no adequate idea of the real extent
of the Roman baths. These date from 50 to 100 A.D. and indicate a degree
of civilization which shows that the Roman inhabitants in Britain must
have been industrious, intelligent and cleanly.

Excavations have been conducted with great difficulty, since the Roman
remains lie directly under an important part of the city covered with
valuable buildings. Nearly all of the baths in the vicinity of the
springs have been uncovered and found in a surprising state of
perfection. In many places the tiling with its mosaic is intact, and
parts of the system of piping laid to conduct the water still may be
traced. Over the springs has been erected the modern pump-house and many
of the Roman baths have been restored to nearly their original state. In
the pump-house is a museum with hundreds of relics discovered in course
of excavation--sculpture, pottery, jewelry, coin and many other articles
that indicate a high degree of civilization. Outside of the Roman
remains the most notable thing in Bath is its abbey church, which, in
impressive architecture and size, will compare favorably with many of
the cathedrals. In fact, it originally was a cathedral, but in an early
day the bishopric was transferred to Wells. There is no ruined fortress
or castle in Bath, with its regulation lot of legends. Possibly in an
effort to remedy the defect, there has been erected on one of the hills
that overlook the town a structure which goes by the epithet of the Sham

On leaving Bath, we followed the fine London road as far as Chippenham,
a prosperous agricultural town celebrated for its wool market. To the
north of this is Malmesbury, with an abbey church whose history goes
back to the Ninth Century. A portion of the nave is still used for
services and is remarkable for its massive pillars and Norman doorway,
the great arch of which has perhaps a hundred rude carvings illustrating
scenes from scripture history. The strong walls of the church caused it
to be used at times as a fortress, and it underwent sieges in the
different wars that raged over the Kingdom. The verger pointed out to us
deep indentations made by Cromwell's cannon and told us that one of the
abbey's vicissitudes was its use for some years as a cloth manufacturing

From Malmesbury we followed the road through Cirencester to Cheltenham,
one of the most modern-looking cities which we saw in England. Like
Bath, it is famous for its springs, and a large share of its population
is made up of retired officers of the army and navy. The main streets
are very wide, nearly straight, and bordered in many places with fine
trees. However, its beginning dates from only about 1700, and therefore
it has little claim on the tourist whose heart is set upon ancient and
historic things.

Of much greater interest is its neighbor, Gloucester, about twelve miles
away. The two cities are almost of the same size, each having about
fifty thousand people. Gloucester can boast of one of the most beautiful
of the cathedrals, whether considered from its imposing Gothic exterior
or its interior, rich with carvings and lighted by unusually fine
stained-glass windows, one of which is declared to be the largest in the
world. The cathedral was begun in 1088, but the main tower was not
completed until nearly five hundred years later, which gives some idea
of the time covered in the construction of many of these great churches.
Gloucester boasts of great antiquity, for it is known that the
Britons had a fortified town here which they defended against the Roman
attacks; and after having become possessed of it, the Romans greatly
strengthened it as a defense against incursions from the Welsh tribes.
Before the Norman Conquest, it was of such importance that Edward the
Confessor held his court in the town for some time. Being in the west
country, it naturally was a storm-center in the parliamentary struggle,
during which time a great deal of the city was destroyed. But there are
many of the old portions still remaining and it has numbers of beautiful
half-timbered buildings. One of these was the home of Robert Raikes,
known to the world as the founder of the Sunday School. Gloucester is
worthy of a longer stay than we were able to make, and in arranging an
itinerary one should not fail to provide for a full day in the town.


From Water Color by A. Waters.]

From Gloucester to Ross runs an excellent highway, though rather devoid
of interest. It was thronged with motorists who generally dashed along
in sublime disregard of the speed limits. We passed several who were
occupied with "roadside troubles" and we were in for an hour or so
ourselves, due to a refractory "vibrator." The Welsh farmers who passed
joked us good-naturedly and one said he would stick to his horse until
he had money to buy a motor--then, he added, he wouldn't buy it, but
would live on the income of the money. We told him that he was a man
after Solomon's own heart. Suddenly the evil spirit left the car and she
sprang away over the beautiful road in mad haste that soon landed us in

Ross is a pretty village, situated on a green hillside overlooking the
Wye, and the tall, graceful spire of its church dominates all views of
the town. Although it was growing quite late, we did not stop here, but
directed our way to Monmouth, twelve miles farther on, which we reached
just as the long twilight was turning into night.




Of no part of our tour does a pleasanter memory linger than of the five
or six hundred miles on the highways of Wales. The weather was glorious
and no section of Britain surpassed the Welsh landscapes in beauty. A
succession of green hills, in places impressive enough to be styled
mountains, sloping away into wooded valleys, with here and there a
quaint village, a ruined castle or abbey, or an imposing country mansion
breaking on the view--all combined to make our journey through Wales one
of our most pleasing experiences. Historic spots are not far apart,
especially on the border, where for centuries these brave people fought
English invaders--and with wonderful success, considering the greatly
superior number of the aggressors. I have already written of Ludlow and
Shrewsbury on the north, but scarcely less attractive--and quite as
important in early days--are the fine old towns of Hereford and Monmouth
on the southern border.

We were everywhere favorably impressed with the Welsh people as being
thrifty and intelligent. The roadside drinking-houses were not so
numerous as in England, for the Welsh are evidently more temperate in
this regard than their neighbors. My observation in this particular is
borne out by an English writer well qualified to judge. He says: "There
is, of a truth, very little drinking now in rural Wales. The farming
classes appear to be extremely sober. Even the village parliament, which
in England discusses the nation's affairs in the village public house,
has no serious parallel in Wales, for the detached cottage-renting
laborer, who is the mainstay of such gatherings, scarcely exists, and
the farmer has other interests to keep him at home." Evidently the Welsh
farmer does attend to his business in an industrious manner, for he
generally has a substantial and prosperous appearance. People with whom
we engaged in conversation were always courteous and obliging and almost
everything conspired to heighten our good opinion of the Welsh. The
fusion with England is nearly complete and the Welsh language is
comparatively little used except by the older people. King Edward has no
more loyal subjects than the Welshmen, but apparently they do not
greatly incline towards admitting his claims as their spiritual head.
The Church of England in Wales is greatly inferior in numbers and
influence to the various nonconformist branches. This is especially true
of the more rural sections.

We found Monmouth an unusually interesting town on account of its
antiquity and the numerous historic events which transpired within its
walls. At the King's Head Hotel, which of course afforded shelter to
Charles I when he was "touring" Britain, we were able with difficulty to
find accommodation, so crowded was the house with an incursion of
English trippers. Monmouth's chief glory and distinction is that it was
the birthplace of King Henry V, Shakespeare's Prince Hal, whom William
Watson describes as

    "The roystering prince that afterward
      Belied his madcap youth and proved
    A greatly simple warrior lord
      Such as our warrior fathers loved."

The scanty ruins of the castle where the prince was born still overlook
the town. Thus King Henry became the patron of Monmouth, and in front of
the town hall has been erected an inartistic effigy of a knight in full
armour, with the inscription, "Henry V, born at Monmouth, August 9,
1387." The old bridge over the river Monnow is unique, with an odd,
castellated gateway at one end, probably intended not so much for
defense as for collecting tolls.

After dark we wandered about the streets until the church-tower chimes
warned us of the lateness of the hour. And even these church bells have
their history. When King Henry sailed from a seaport in France on one
occasion the inhabitants rang the bells for joy, which so incensed the
monarch that he ordered the bells removed and presented them to his
native town. We saw too little of Monmouth, for the next morning we were
away early, taking the fine road that leads directly south to Tintern
and Chepstow.

The abbey-builders chose their locations with unerring judgment, always
in a beautiful valley near a river or lake, surrounded by fertile fields
and charming scenery. Of the score of ruined abbeys which we visited
there was not one that did not fulfill this description, and none of
them to a greater extent--possibly excepting Fountain's--than Tintern.
In the words of an enthusiastic admirer, "Tintern is supremely wonderful
for its situation among its scores of rivals. It lies on the very brink
of the River Wye, in a hollow of the hills of Monmouth, sheltered from
harsh winds, warmed by the breezes of the Channel--a very nook in an
earthly Eden. Somehow the winter seems to fall more lightly here, the
spring to come earlier, the foliage to take on a deeper green, the grass
a greater thickness, and the flowers a more multitudinous variety."
Certainly the magnificent church--almost entire except for its fallen
roof--standing in the pleasant valley surrounded by forest-clad hills on
every side, well merits such enthusiastic language. It is well that
this fine ruin is now in the possession of the Crown, for it insures
that decay will be arrested and its beauties preserved as an inspiration
to art and architecture of later times.

From Tintern to Chepstow we followed an unsurpassed mountain road. For
three miles our car gradually climbed to the highest point, winding
along the hillside, from which the valley of the Severn, with its broad
river, spread out beneath us in all the freshness of June verdure; while
on the other hand, for hundreds of feet sheer above us, sloped the hill,
with its rich curtain of forest trees, the lighter green of the summer
foliage dashed with the somber gloom of the yew. Just at the summit we
passed the Wyndcliffe, towering five hundred feet above us, from which
one may behold one of the most famous prospects in the Island. Then our
car started down a three-mile coast over a smooth and uniform grade
until we landed at the brow of the steep hill which drops sharply into

A rude, gloomy fortress Chepstow Castle must have been in its day of
might, and time has done little to soften its grim and forbidding
aspect. Situated on a high cliff which drops abruptly to the river, it
must have been well-nigh invincible in days ere castle walls crumbled
away before cannon-shot. It is of great extent, the wails enclosing an
area of about four acres, divided into four separate courts. The
best-preserved portion is the keep, or tower, in which the caretaker
makes his home; but the fine chapel and banqueting hall were complete
enough to give a good idea of their old-time state. We were able to
follow a pathway around the top of the broad wall, from which was
afforded a widely extended view over the mouth of the Severn towards the
sea. "This is Martin's Tower," said our guide, "for in the dungeon
beneath it the regicide, Henry Martin, spent the last twenty years of
his life and died." The man spoke the word "regicide" as though he felt
the stigma that it carries with it everywhere in England, even though
applied to the judge who condemned to death Charles Stuart, a man who
well deserved to die. And when Britain punished the regicides and
restored to power the perfidious race of the Stuarts, she was again
putting upon herself the yoke of misgovernment and storing up another
day of wrath and bloodshed.


From Chepstow it is only a short journey to Raglan, whose ruined castle
impressed us in many ways as the most beautiful we saw in Britain. It
was far different from the rude fortress at Chepstow. In its best days
it combined a military stronghold with the conveniences and artistic
effects of a palace. It is fortunately one of the best-preserved of the
castellated ruins in the Kingdom. Impressive indeed were the two square
towers flanking its great entrance, yet their stern aspect was
softened by the heavy masses of ivy that covered them almost to the top.
The walls, though roofless, were still standing, so that one could gain
a good idea of the original plan of the castle. The fire places, with
elaborate mantels still in place, the bits of fine carvings that clung
to the walls here and there, the grand staircase, a portion of which
still remains, all combined to show that this castle had been planned as
a superb residence as well as a fortress. From the Gwent tower there was
an unobstructed view stretching away in every direction toward the
horizon. The day was perfect, without even a haze to obscure the
distance, and save from Ludlow Castle, I saw nothing to equal the
prospect which lay beneath me when standing on Raglan Tower.

Raglan's active history ended with its surrender August 15, 1646, to the
Parliamentary army under General Fairfax, after a severe siege of more
than two months. It was the last fortress in England to hold out for the
lost cause of King Charles, and a brave record did its gallant defenders
make against an overwhelmingly superior force. The Marquis of Worcester,
though eighty-five years of age, held the castle against the
Cromwellians until starvation forced him to surrender. The old nobleman
was granted honorable terms by his captors, but Parliament did not keep
faith, and he died a year later in the Tower of London. On being told a
few days before his death that his body would be buried in Windsor
Chapel, he cheerfully remarked: "Why, God bless us all, then I shall
have a better castle when I am dead than they took from me when I was

After the surrender the castle was dismantled by the soldiers, and the
farmers in the vicinity emulated the Parliamentary destroyers in looting
the fine edifice. Seventeen of the stone staircases were taken away
during the interval and the great hall and chapel were seriously
injured. Enough of the massive walls is left to convey a vivid idea of
the olden grandeur of the castle. The motto of the time-worn arms
inscribed over the entrance speaks eloquently of the past, expressing in
Latin the sentiment, "I scorn to change or fear."

A quiet, unpretentious old border town is Hereford, pleasantly located
on the banks of the always beautiful Wye. The square tower of the
cathedral is the most conspicuous object when the town first comes into
view. Though dating in part from the Eleventh Century, work on the
cathedral occupied the centuries until 1530, when it was practically
completed as it now stands. The vandal Wyatt, who dealt so hardly with
Salisbury, had the restoration of the cathedral in hand early in the
Eighteenth Century. He destroyed many of its most artistic features,
but recently his work was undone and a second restoration was completed
in about 1863. The structure as it now stands is mainly Norman in style,
built of light-brown stone, and remarkably beautiful and imposing.

Hereford Castle has entirely vanished, though a contemporary writer
describes it as "one of the fairest, largest, and strongest castles in
England." The site which it occupied is now a public garden, diversified
with shrubbery and flowers. An ornamental lake indicates where once was
the moat, but the outlines of the walls are shown only by grass-covered
ridges. Its history was no doubt as stirring as that of others of the
border castles, which more fortunately escaped annihilation.

Despite its present atmosphere of peace and quietude, Hereford saw
strenuous times in the fierce warfare which raged between the English
and Welsh, though few relics of those days remain. The streets are
unusually wide and with few exceptions the buildings are modern.
Surrounding the town is a stretch of green, level meadow, upon which
graze herds of the red and white cattle whose fame is wider than that of
their native shire. No doubt there are many familiar with the sleek
Herefords who have no idea from whence they take their name.

Our hotel, the Green Dragon, had recently been re-furnished and
brightened throughout, and its excellent service was much better than
we often found in towns the size of Hereford. Its well planned motor
garage, just completed, showed that its proprietors recognized the
growing importance of this method of touring.

Our run from Hereford up the Wye Valley to the sea, we agreed was one of
our red-letter days. We passed through greatly varied scenery from the
fertile, level country around Hereford to the rough, broken hills near
the river's source, but the view was always picturesque in the highest
degree. The road runs along the edge of the hills, and the glorious
valley with its brawling river spread out before us almost the entire
day. At times we ran through forests, which cover the immense parks
surrounding the country estates along the river. We saw many fine
English country-seats, ranging from old, castellated structures to
apparently modern mansions. There are also a number of ruins along the
valley, each with its romantic legends. At Hay, on the hill overlooking
the town, is the castle, partly in ruins and partly in such state of
repair as to be the summer home of the family that owns it. A little
farther, upon a knoll directly overhanging the river, are crumbling
piles of stone where once stood Clifford Castle, the home of Fair
Rosamond, whose melancholy story Tennyson has woven into one of his

As we advanced farther up the valley, the country grew wilder and more
broken and for many miles we ran through the towering hills that pass
for mountains in Wales. These were covered with bright-green verdure to
their very tops, and the flocks of sheep grazing everywhere lent an
additional charm to the picture. At the foot of the hills the road
follows the valleys with gentle curves and easy grades. The Wye dwindles
to the merest brook, and some miles before we reached the coast, we
passed the head waters of the river and followed a brook flowing in an
opposite direction.

The road over which we had traveled is not favorable for fast time.
Though comparatively level and with splendid surface, it abounds in
sharp curves and in many places runs along high embankments. The Motor
Union has recommended that eighteen miles per hour be not exceeded on
this road. The distance from Hereford to Aberyswith is only ninety
miles, yet we occupied the greater part of the day in the trip, and had
time permitted, we would gladly have broken the journey at one of the
quaint towns along the way. At many points of vantage we stopped to
contemplate the beauty of the scene--one would have to be a speed maniac
indeed to "scorch" over the Wye Valley road.

Aberyswith is a seaside resort, somewhat similar to Penzance. It is
situated on the harbor at the foot of a high bluff, and its principal
feature is the long row of hotels fronting on the ocean. Though mostly
modern, it is by no means without history, as evidenced by its ruined
castle overlooking the sea and vouching for the antiquity of the town.

We left Aberyswith next morning with considerable apprehensions. Our
books and maps showed that we would encounter by odds the worst roads of
our entire tour. A grade of one in five along the edge of an almost
precipitous hill was not an alluring prospect, for we were little
inclined toward hill-climbing demonstrations. Shortly after leaving the
town we were involved in poorly kept country byways without sign-boards
and slippery with heavy rains of the night before. After meandering
among the hills and inquiring of the natives for towns the names of
which they could not understand when we asked and we could not
understand when they answered, we came to Dinas Mowddwy, where there was
little else than a handsome hotel. This reminded us that in our
wanderings the hour for luncheon had passed. We stopped at the hotel,
but found difficulty in locating anybody to minister to our wants; and
so deliberate were the movements of the party who finally admitted
responsibility that an hour was consumed in obtaining a very
unpretentious repast.

The hotelkeeper held out a discouraging prospect in regard to the hills
ahead of us. He said that the majority of the motorists who attempted
them were stalled and that there had been some serious accidents. We
went on our way with considerable uneasiness, as our car had not been
working well, and later on trouble was discovered in a broken
valve-spring. However, we started over the mountain, which showed on our
road-book to be not less than three miles in length. There were many
dangerous turns of the road, which ran alongside an almost precipitous
incline, where there was every opportunity for the car to roll a mile or
more before coming to a standstill if it once should get over the edge.
We crawled up the hill until within about fifty yards from the top, and
right at this point there was a sharp turn on an exceedingly stiff
grade. After several trials at great risk of losing control of the car,
I concluded that discretion was (sometimes) the better part of valor,
and with great difficulty turned around and gave it up.

We made a detour by way of Welshpool and Oswestry, where we came into
the London and Holyhead road, bringing up for the night at Llangollen.
We found it necessary to travel about sixty miles to get to the point
which we would have reached in one-fourth the distance had we succeeded
in climbing the hill. It proved no hardship, as we saw some of the most
beautiful country in Wales and traveled over a level road which enabled
us to make very good time with the partly crippled car.

Although Llangollen is a delightful town, my recollections of it are
anything but pleasant. Through our failure to receive a small repair
which I ordered from London, we were delayed at this place for two days,
and as it usually chances in such cases, at one of the worst hotels
whose hospitality we endured during our trip. It had at one time been
quite pretentious, but had degenerated into a rambling, dirty, old inn,
principally a headquarters for fishing parties and local "trippers." And
yet at this dilapidated old inn there were a number of guests who made
great pretensions at style. Women "dressed for dinner" in low-necked
gowns with long trains; and the men attired themselves in dress-suits of
various degrees of antiquity.

While we were marooned here we visited Vale Crucis Abbey, about a mile
distant. The custodian was absent, or in any event could not be aroused
by vigorously ringing the cowbell suspended above the gate, and we had
to content ourselves with a very unsatisfactory view of the ruin over
the stone wall that enclosed it. The environments of Llangollen are
charming in a high degree. The flower-bordered lanes lead past cottages
and farm houses surrounded by low stone walls and half hidden by
brilliantly colored creepers. Bits of woodland are interspersed with
bright green sheep pastures and high, almost mountainous, bluffs
overhang the valley. On the very summit of one of these is perched a
ruined castle, whose inaccessible position discouraged nearer

The country around Llangollen was beautiful, but the memory of the hotel
leaves a blight over all. We were happy indeed when our motor started
off again with the steady, powerful hum that so delights the soul of the
driver, and it seemed fairly to tremble with impatience to make up for
its enforced inaction. Though it was eight o'clock in the evening, it
was anything to get away from Llangollen, and we left with a view of
stopping for the night at Bettws-y-Coed, about thirty miles away.

With our motor car racing like mad over the fine highway--there was no
danger of police traps at that hour--we did not stop to inquire about
the dog that went under the wheels in the first village we passed.
However, the night set in suddenly and a rain began to fall heavily
before we had gone half the distance we proposed. We had experienced
trouble enough in finding the roads in Wales during the daytime, and the
prospect of doing this by night and in a heavy rain was not at all
encouraging, and we perforce had to put up at the first place that
offered itself. A proposition to stop at one of the so-called inns along
the road was received with alarm by the good woman who attended the
bar. She could not possibly care for us and she was loud in her praises
of the Saracen's Head at Cerrig-y-Druidion, only a little farther on,
which she represented as a particular haven for motorists.

The appearance of our car with its rapidly vibrating engine and glaring
headlights before the Saracen's Head created considerable commotion
among the large family of the host and the numerous guests, who, like
Tam-O'-Shanter, were snug and cozy by their inglenook while the storm
was raging outside. However, the proprietor was equal to the occasion
and told me that he had just come from Liverpool to take charge of the
inn and that he hoped to have the patronage of motorists. With
commendable enterprise he had fitted up a portion of his barn and had
labeled it "Motor Garage" in huge letters. The stable man was also
excited over the occasion, and I am sure that our car was the first to
occupy the newly created garage, which had no doubt been cut off from
the cow-stable at a very recent date.

The shelter of the Saracen's Head was timely and grateful none the less,
and no one could have been kindlier or more attentive than our hostess.
We had a nicely served lunch in the hotel parlor, which was just across
the hallway from the lounging room, where the villagers assembled to
indulge in such moderate drinking as Welshmen are addicted to. The
public room was a fine old apartment with open-beamed ceiling--not the
sham with which we decorate our modern houses, but real open beams that
supported the floor--and one end of the room was occupied by a great
open fireplace with old-time spits and swinging cranes. Overhead was
hung a supply of hams and bacon and on iron hooks above the door were
suspended several dressed fowls, on the theory that these improve with
age. We were given a small but clean and neat apartment, from which I
suspicion the younger members of the landlord's family had been
unceremoniously ousted to make room for us. The distressing feature was
the abominable beds, but as these prevailed in most of the country
hotels at which we stopped we shall not lay this up too strongly against
the Saracen's Head. I noticed that on one of the window-panes someone
had scribbled with a diamond, "Sept. 4, 1726," which would seem to
indicate that the original window was there at that time. The house
itself must have been considerably older. If rates had been the sole
inducement, we should undoubtedly have become permanent boarders at the
Saracen's Head, for I think that the bill for our party was seven
shillings for supper, room and breakfast.

We left Cerrig-y-Druidion next morning in a gray, driving rain, with
drifting fogs that almost hid the road at times. A few miles brought us
to the Conway River, the road closely following the stream through the
picturesque scenery on its banks. It was swollen by heavy rains and the
usually insignificant river was a wild torrent, dashing in rapids and
waterfalls over its rocky bed. The clouds soon broke away and for the
remainder of the day the weather was as fine as could possibly be wished

Bettws-y-Coed is the most famous of mountain towns in Wales, and its
situation is indeed romantic. It is generally reputed to be the chief
Welsh honeymoon resort and a paradise for fishermen, but it has little
to detain the tourist interested in historic Britain. We evidently
should have fared much differently at its splendid hotel from what we
did at Cerrig-y-Druidion, but we were never sorry for our enforced
sojourn at the Saracen's Head.

The road from Bettws-y-Coed to Carnarvon is a good one, but steep in
places, and it passes through some of the finest mountain scenery in
Wales. It leads through the Pass of Llanberis and past Snowdon, the king
of the Welsh mountains--though tame indeed to one who has seen the
Rockies. Snowdon, the highest in the Kingdom, rises not so much as four
thousand feet above the sea level.

Carnarvon Castle is conceded from many points of view to be the finest
ruin in the Kingdom. It does not occupy an eminence, as did so many
castles whose position contributed much to their defense, but it
depended more on its lofty watch-towers and the stupendous strength of
its outer walls. These are built of solid granite with a thickness of
ten feet or more in vital places, and it is doubtful if even the
old-time artillery would have made much impression upon them. Its
massive construction no doubt accounts for the wonderful preservation of
the outer walls, which are almost entire, and Carnarvon Castle, as
viewed from the outside, probably appears very much the same as it did
when the builders completed the work about 1300. It was built by King
Edward I as a royal residence from which to direct his operations
against the Welsh, which finally resulted in the conquest of that people
by the English invaders. In a little dungeonlike room, tradition
declares that Edward II, first Prince of Wales, was born. This is
vigorously insisted upon in the local guide-book as an actual historic
fact, although it is quite as vigorously disputed by numerous
antiquarians, uninfluenced by Carnarvon's interests. The castle is now
the property of the town and is well looked after.

Leaving Carnarvon, our next objective was Conway, whose castle is hardly
less famous and even more picturesque than that of its neighbor, though
in more ruinous condition. The road we followed closely skirts the
coast for a great part of the distance, running at times on the verge of
the ocean. In places it reminds one of the Axenstrasse of Lake Lucerne,
being cut in the side of the cliffs overhanging the sea, with here and
there great masses of rock projecting over it; and passes occasionally
through a tunnel cut in the stone. A few miles north of Carnarvon we
passed through Bangor, one of the most prosperous-looking towns in North
Wales and the seat of one of the few Welsh cathedrals--a long, low,
though not unpleasing, building. The site of this cathedral had been
continuously occupied by a church since the Sixth Century, although the
present structure dates from the Thirteenth.

An hour's run after leaving Bangor brought us in sight of the towers of
Conway Castle. Nowhere in Britain does the spirit of mediaevalism linger
as it does in the ancient town of Conway. It is still surrounded by its
old wall with twenty-one watch-towers and the three gateways originally
leading into the town have been recently restored. The castle stands on
the verge of a precipitous rock and its outer walls are continuous with
those of the town. It is a perfect specimen of a Thirteenth Century
military fortress, with walls of enormous thickness, flanked by eight
huge, circular towers. It was built by Edward I in 1284. Several times
it was besieged by the Welsh and on one occasion came near falling into
their hands while the king himself was in the castle. It was besieged
during the Parliamentary wars, but for some unaccountable reason it was
not destroyed or seriously damaged when captured. Its present
dilapidated state is due to the action of its owner, Lord Conway,
shortly after, in dismantling it to sell the lead and timber of the
building, and it was permitted to fall into gradual decay. The castle,
with its eight towers and bridge, which matches it in general style and
which was built about fifty years ago, is one of the best known objects
in the whole Kingdom. It has been made familiar to everybody through
innumerable photographs and pictures.

When we drew our car up in front of the castle it was in gala attire and
was the scene of activity which we were at a loss to account for. We
soon learned that the Wesleyans, or Welsh Methodists, were holding a
festival in the castle, and the shilling we paid for admission included
a nicely served lunch, of which the Welsh strawberries were the
principal feature. The occasion was enlivened by music from the local
band and songs by young girls in the old Welsh costume. This led us to
ask if the Welsh language were in common use among the people. We were
told that while the older people can speak it, it does not find much
favor among the younger generation, some of whom are almost ashamed to
admit knowledge of the old tongue. English was spoken everywhere among
the people at the gathering, and the only Welsh heard was in some of the
songs by the girls. We wandered about the ruin and ascended the towers,
which afford a fine view of the town and river. There seems to have been
little done in the way of restoration, or repair, but so massive are the
walls that they have splendidly stood the ravages of time.

On leaving Conway we crossed the suspension bridge, paying a goodly toll
for the privilege. It was already growing late when we left the town,
but the fine level road and the unusually willing spirit evinced by our
motor enabled us to cover the fifty miles to Chester before night set



Chester stands a return visit well, and so does the spacious and
hospitable Grosvenor Hotel. It was nearly dark when we reached the city
and the hotel was crowded, the season now being at its height. We had
neglected to wire for reservation, but our former stop at the hotel was
not forgotten and this stood us in good stead in securing
accommodations. So comfortably were we established that we did not take
the car out of the garage the next day but spent our time in leisurely
re-visiting some of the places that had pleased us most.

The next day we were early away for the north. I think that no other
stretch of road of equal length was more positively unattractive than
that we followed from Chester to Penrith. Even the road-book, whose
"objects of interest" were in some cases doubtful, to say the least,
could name only the battlefield of 1648 near Preston and one or two
minor "objects" in a distance of one hundred miles. I recalled the
comment of the Touring Secretary of the Motor Union as he rapidly drew
his pencil through this road as shown on the map: "Bad road, rough
pavement, houses for thirty miles at a stretch right on each side of
the street, crowds of children everywhere--but you cannot get away from
it very well." All of which we verified by personal experience.

At starting it seemed easy to reach Carlisle for the night, but progress
was slow and we met an unexpected delay at Warrington, twenty miles
north of Chester. A policeman courteously notified us that the main
street of the city would be closed three hours for a Sunday School
parade. We had arrived five minutes too late to get across the bridge
and out of the way. We expressed our disgust at the situation and the
officer made the conciliatory suggestion that we might be able to go on
anyway. He doubted if the city had any authority to close the main
street, one of the King's highways, on account of such a procession. We
hardly considered our rights so seriously infringed as to demand such a
remedy, and we turned into the stable-yard of a nearby hotel to wait
until the streets were clear. In the meantime we joined the crowd that
watched the parade. The main procession, of five or six thousand
children, was made up of Sunday Schools of the Protestant churches--the
Church of England and the "Non-Conformists." The Catholics, whose
relations in England with Protestants are strained to a much greater
extent than in the United States, did not join, but formed a smaller
procession in one of the side streets. The parade was brilliant with
flags and with huge banners bearing portraits of the King and Queen,
though some bore the names and emblems of the different schools. One
small fellow proudly flourished the Stars and Stripes, which was the
only foreign flag among the thousands in the procession. In this
connection I might remark that one sees the American flag over here far
oftener than he would traveling in America. We found nothing but the
kindest and most cordial feeling toward Americans everywhere; and the
very fact that we were Americans secured us special privileges in not a
few cases.

After the procession had crossed the bridge, a policeman informed us
that we could proceed. We gained considerable time by making a detour
through side streets--not an altogether easy performance--and after much
inquiry regained the main road leading out of the city. Warrington is a
city of more than one hundred and twenty thousand inhabitants, a
manufacturing place with nothing to detain the tourist. On the main
street near the river is a fine bronze statue of Oliver Cromwell, one of
four that I saw erected to the memory of the Protector in England. Our
route from Warrington led through Wigan and Preston, manufacturing
cities of nearly one hundred thousand each, and the suburbs of the three
are almost continuous. Tram cars were numerous and children played
everywhere with utter unconcern for the vehicles which crowded the

When we came to Lancaster we were glad to stop, although our day's
journey had covered only sixty miles. We knew very little of Lancaster
and resorted to the guide-books for something of its antecedents, only
to learn the discouraging fact that here, as everywhere, the Romans had
been ahead of us. The town has a history reaching back to the Roman
occupation, but its landmarks have been largely obliterated in the
manufacturing center which it has become. Charles Dickens was a guest at
Lancaster, and in recording his impressions he declared it "a pleasant
place, dropped in the midst of a charming landscape; a place with a
fine, ancient fragment of a castle; a place of lovely walks and
possessing many staid old houses, richly fitted with Honduras mahogany,"
and followed with other reflections not so complimentary concerning the
industrial slavery which prevailed in the city a generation or two ago.
The "fine, ancient fragment of a castle" has been built into the modern
structure which now serves as the seat of the county court. The square
tower of the Norman keep is included in the building. This in general
style and architecture conforms to the old castle, which, excepting the
fragment mentioned by Dickens, has long since vanished. Near at hand is
St. Mary's Church, rivaling in size and dignity many of the cathedrals,
and its massive, buttressed walls and tall, graceful spire do justice to
its magnificent site. From the eminence occupied by the church the Irish
Sea is plainly visible, and in the distance the almost tropical Isle of
Man rises abruptly out of the blue waters. The monotony of our previous
day's travel was forgotten in lively anticipation as we proceeded at
what seemed a snail's pace over the fine road leading from Penrith to
Carlisle. We had been warned at Penrith, not against the bold
highwaymen, the border moss-troopers or the ranting Highlandmen of song
and story, but against a plain, Twentieth Century police trap which was
being worked very successfully along this road. Such was our approach in
these degenerate days to "Merrie Carlile," which figured so largely in
the endless border warfare between the Scotch and English. But why the
town should have been famed as "Merrie Carlile" would be hard to say,
unless more than a thousand years of turmoil, bloodshed and almost
ceaseless warfare through which it passed earned it the cheerful
appellation. The trouble between the English and the Welsh ended early,
but it has been only a century and a half ago since the closing scene of
the long and bitter conflict between the north and south was enacted at
Carlisle. Its grim old castle was the scene of the imprisonment and
execution of the last devoted followers of Prince Charlie, and
according to Scott's Waverly the dashing but sadly deluded young
chieftain, Fergus McIvor, was one of those who suffered a shameful
death. In this connection one remembers that Scott's marriage to Miss
Carpentier took place in Carlisle, an event that would naturally
accentuate our interest in the fine old border city. As we had
previously visited Carlisle, our stay was a short one, but its
remarkable history, its connection with the stories of Walter Scott, its
atmosphere of romance and legend and the numerous points of interest
within easy reach--all combine to make it a center where one might spend
several days. The Romans had been here also, and they, too, had
struggled with the wild tribes on the north, and from that time down to
the execution of the last adherents of the Stuarts in 1759 the town was
hardly at any time in a state of quietude. As described by an observant
writer, "every man became a soldier and every house that was not a mere
peasant's hut was a fortress." A local poet of the Seventeenth Century
summed it up in a terse if not elegant couplet as his unqualified

    "That whoso then in the border did dwell
    Lived little happier than those in hell."

But Carlisle is peaceful and quiet enough at the present time, a place
of considerable size and with a thriving commerce. Its castle, a plain
and unimpressive structure, still almost intact, has been converted
into military barracks, and its cathedral, which, according to an old
chronicle, in 1634 "impressed three observant strangers as a great wild
country church," has not been greatly altered in appearance since that
period. It suffered severely at the hands of the Parliamentary soldiers,
who tore down a portion of the nave to use the materials in
strengthening the defenses of the town. But the story of Carlisle could
not be told in many volumes. If the mere hint of its great interest
which I have given here can induce any fellow tourist to tarry a little
longer at "Merrie Carlile," it will be enough.

Leaving Carlisle, we crossed "Solway Tide" and found ourselves in the
land of bluebells and heather, the "Bonnie Scotland" of Robert Burns.
Shortly after crossing the river, a sign-board pointed the way to Gretna
Green, that old-time haven of eloping lovers, who used to cross the
Solway just as the tide began to rise, and before it subsided there was
little for the paternal ancestors to do but forgive and make the best of
it. But we missed the village, for it was a mile or two off the road to
Dumfries, which we hoped to reach for the night. An unexpected
difficulty with the car nearly put this out of the range of possibility,
but by grace of the long Scotch twilight, we came into Dumfries about
ten o'clock without finding it necessary to light our lamps. Our day's
journey had been a tiresome one, and we counted ourselves fortunate on
being directed to the Station Hotel, which was as comfortable and well
managed as any we found. The average railway hotel in America is
anything but an attractive proposition, but in Scotland and in England
conditions are almost reversed, the station hotels under the control of
the different railway companies being generally the best.


From Water Color by Stewart.]

We had been attracted to Dumfries chiefly because of its association
with Robert Burns, who spent the last years of his life in the town or
in its immediate vicinity. Our first pilgrimage was to the poet's tomb,
in St. Michael's churchyard. A splendid memorial marks the place, but a
visit to the small dingy house a few yards distant, in which he died,
painfully reminded us of his last years of distress and absolute want.
Within easy reach of Dumfries lie many points of interest, but as our
time permitted us to visit only one of these, we selected Caerlaverock
Castle, the Ellangowan of Scott's "Guy Mannering," lying about ten miles
to the south. In location and style of construction it is one of the
most remarkable of the Scotch ruins. It stands in an almost level
country near the coast and must have depended for defense on its
enormously thick walls and the great double moat which surrounded it,
rather than the strength of its position. The castle is built of
dark-brown stone, and the walls, rising directly from the waters of the
moat and covered with masses of ivy, are picturesque, though in a sad
state of disrepair. Bits of artistic carving and beautiful windows
showed that it was a palace as well as a fortress, though it seems
strange that the builder should select such a site. In common with most
British castles, it was finally destroyed by Cromwell, and the custodian
showed us a pile of cannon balls which he had gathered in the vicinity.
On one of the stones of the inner wall were the initials, "R.B.," and
the date, "1776," which our guide assured us were cut by Robert Burns;
and there are certain peculiarities about the monogram which leave
little doubt that it was the work of the poet. From the battlements of
the castle the old man pointed to a distant hill, where, he told us, the
home of the Carlyles had been for many years and where Thomas Carlyle,
who was born at Ecclefechan, lies buried. Within a few miles of Dumfries
is Ellisland Farm, where Robert Burns was a tenant for several years,
and many of his most famous poems were written during that period. And
besides, there were old abbeys and castles galore within easy reach; and
glad indeed we should have been had we been able to make the Station
Hotel our headquarters for a week and devote our time to exploring. But
we were already behind schedule and the afternoon found us on the road
to Ayr.

A little more than half the distance from Dumfries to Ayr the road runs
through the Nith Valley, with river and forest scenery so charming as to
remind us of the Wye. The highway is a splendid one, with fine surface
and easy grades. It passes through an historic country, and the journey
would consume a long time if one should pause at every point that might
well repay a visit. A mile on the way is Lincluden Abbey, in whose
seclusion Burns wrote many of his poems, the most famous of which, "The
Vision of Liberty," begins with a reference to the ruin:

    "As I stood by yon roofless tower
      Where wall flowers scent the dewy air,
    Where the owlet lone in her ivy bower,
      Tells to the midnight moon her care--"

Ellisland Farm is only a few miles farther on the road, never to be
forgotten as the spot where "Tam-O'-Shanter" was written. The farm home
was built by Burns himself during what was probably the happiest period
of his life, and he wrote many verses that indicated his joyful
anticipation of life at Ellisland Farm. But alas, the "best laid plans
o' mice and men gang oft agley," and the personal experience of few men
has more strikingly proven the truth of the now famous lines than of
Robert Burns himself! Many old castles and magnificent mansions crown
the heights overlooking the river, but we caught only glimpses of some
of them, surrounded as they were by immense parks, closed to the public.
Every one of the older places underwent many and strange vicissitudes in
the long years of border warfare, and of them all, Drumlanrigh Castle,
founded in 1689, is perhaps the most imposing. For ten years its
builder, the first Earl of Queensbury, labored on the structure, only to
pass a single night in the completed building, never to revisit it, and
ending his days grieving over the fortune he had squandered on this
many-towered pile of gray stone.

We may not loiter along the Nithdale road, rich as it is in traditions
and relics of the past. Our progress through such a beautiful country
had been slow at the best, and a circular sign-board, bearing the
admonition, "Ten Miles Per Hour," posted at each of the numerous
villages on the way, was another deterrent upon undue haste. The
impression that lingers with us of these small Scotch villages is not a
pleasant one. Rows of low, gray-stone, slate-roofed cottages straggling
along a single street--generally narrow and crooked and extending for
distances depending on the size of the place--made up the average
village. Utterly unrelieved by the artistic touches of the English
cottages and without the bright dashes of color from flowers and vines,
with square, harsh lines and drab coloring everywhere, these Scotch
villages seemed bleak and comfortless. Many of them we passed through on
this road, among them Sandquhar, with its castle, once a strong and
lordly fortress but now in a deplorable state of neglect and decay, and
Mauchline, where Burns farmed and sang before he removed to Dumfries. It
was like passing into another country when we entered Ayr, which,
despite its age and the hoary traditions which cluster around it, is an
up-to-date appearing seaport of about thirty thousand people. It is a
thriving business town with an unusually good electric street-car
system, fine hotels and (not to be forgotten by motorists) excellent
garages and repair shops.

Ayr is one of the objective points of nearly every tourist who enters
Scotland. Its associations with Burns, his birthplace, Kirk Alloway, his
monument, the "Twa Brigs," the "Brig O' Doon," and the numerous other
places connected with his memory in Ayr and its vicinity, need not be
dwelt on here. An endless array of guide-books and other volumes will
give more information than the tourist can absorb and his motor car will
enable him to rapidly visit such places as he may choose. It will be of
little encumbrance to him, for he may leave the car standing at the
side of the street while he makes a tour of the haunts of Burns at
Alloway or elsewhere.

It was a gloomy day when we left Ayr over the fine highway leading to
Glasgow, but before we had gone very far it began to rain steadily. We
passed through Kilmarnock, the largest city in Ayrshire. Here a splendid
memorial to Burns has been erected, and connected with it is a museum of
relics associated with the poet, as well as copies of various editions
of his works. This reminds one that the first volume of poems by Burns
was published at Kilmarnock, and in the cottage at Ayr we saw one of the
three existing copies, which had been purchased for the collection at an
even thousand pounds.

We threaded our way carefully through Glasgow, for the rain, which was
coming down heavily, made the streets very slippery, and our car showed
more or less tendency to the dangerous "skid." Owing to former visits to
the city, we did not pause in Glasgow, though the fact is that no other
large city in Britain has less to interest the tourist. It is a great
commercial city, having gained in the last one hundred years three
quarters of a million inhabitants. Its public buildings, churches, and
other show-places--excepting the cathedral--lack the charm of antiquity.
After striking the Dumbarton road, exit from the city was easy, and for
a considerable distance we passed near the Clyde shipyards, the
greatest in the world, where many of the largest merchant and war
vessels have been constructed. Just as we entered Dumbarton, whose
castle loomed high on a rocky island opposite the town, the rain ceased
and the sky cleared with that changeful rapidity we noticed so often in
Britain. Certainly we were fortunate in having fine weather for the
remainder of the day, during which we passed perhaps as varied and
picturesque scenery as we found on our journey.

[Illustration: THE PATH BY THE LOCH.

From Photograph.]

For the next thirty miles the road closely followed the west shore of
Loch Lomond, and for the larger part of the way we had a magnificent
panorama of the lake and the numberless green islands that rose out of
its silvery waters. Our view in places was cut off by the fine country
estates that lay immediately on the shores of the lake, but the grounds,
rich with shrubbery and bright with flowers, were hardly less pleasing
than the lake itself. These prevailed at the southern portion of the
lake only, and for at least twenty miles the road closely followed the
shore, leading around short turns on the very edges of steep embankments
or over an occasional sharp hill--conditions that made careful driving
necessary. Just across the lake, which gradually grew narrower as we
went north, lay the low Scotch mountains, their green outlines subdued
by a soft blue haze, but forming a striking background to the
ever-varying scenery of the lake and opposite shore. Near the
northern end on the farther side is the entrance to the Trosachs, made
famous by Scott's "Lady of the Lake." The roads to this region are
closed to motors--the only instance that I remember where public
highways were thus interdicted. The lake finally dwindled to a brawling
mountain stream, which we followed for several miles to Crianlarich, a
rude little village nestling at the foot of the rugged hills. From here
we ran due west to Oban, and for twenty miles of the distance the road
was the worst we saw in Scotland, being rough and covered with loose,
sharp stones that were ruinous to tires. It ran through a bleak,
unattractive country almost devoid of habitations and with little sign
of life excepting the flocks of sheep grazing on the short grasses that
covered the steep, stony hillsides. The latter half of the distance the
surroundings are widely different, an excellent though winding and
narrow road leading us through some of the finest scenes of the
Highlands. Especially pleasing was the ten-mile jaunt along the north
shore of Loch Awe, with the glimpses of Kilchurn Castle which we caught
through occasional openings in the thickly clustered trees on the shore.
Few ruins are more charmingly situated than Kilchurn, standing as it
does on a small island rising out of the clear waters--the crumbling
walls overgrown with ivy and wall-flowers. The last fifteen miles were
covered in record time for us, for it was growing exceedingly chilly as
the night began to fall and the Scotch July day was as fresh and sharp
as an American October.

Oban is one of the most charming of the north of Scotland resort towns,
and is becoming one of the most popular. It is situated on a little
land-locked bay, generally white in summer time with the sails of
pleasure vessels. Directly fronting the town, just across the harbor,
are several ranges of hills fading away into the blue mists of the
distance and forming, together with the varying moods of sky and water,
a delightful picture. Overhanging the town from the east is the scanty
ruin of Dunollie Castle, little more than a shapeless pile of stone
covered over with masses of ivy. Viewed from the harbor, the town
presents a striking picture, and the most remarkable feature is the
great colosseum on the hill. This is known as McCaig's Tower and was
built by an eccentric citizen some years ago merely to give employment
to his fellow townsmen. One cannot get an adequate idea of the real
magnitude of the structure without climbing the steep hill and viewing
it from the inside. It is a circular tower, pierced by two rows of
windows, and is not less than three hundred feet in diameter, the wall
ranging in height from thirty to seventy-five feet from the ground. It
lends a most striking and unusual appearance to the town, but among
the natives it goes by the name of "McCaig's Folly."


From Oban as a center, numberless excursions may be made to old castles,
lakes of surpassing beauty and places of ancient and curious history.
None of the latter are more famous than the island of Iona, lying about
thirty-five miles distant and accessible by steamer two or three days of
each week in summer time. We never regretted that we abandoned the car a
day for the trip to this quaint spot and its small sister island,
Staffa, famed for Fingall's cave and the curious natural columns formed
by volcanic action. The round trip covers a distance of about
seventy-five miles and occupies eight or ten hours. Iona is a very small
island, with a population of no more than fifty, but it was a place of
importance in the early religious history of Scotland; and its odd
little cathedral, which is now in ruins--except the nave, but recently
restored--was originally built in the Eleventh Century. Weird and
strange indeed is the array of memorials rudely cut from Scotch granite
that mark the resting places of the chiefs of many forgotten clans,
while a much higher degree of art is shown in the regular and even
delicate designs traced on the numerous old crosses still standing. In
olden days Iona was counted sacred ground after the landing of St.
Columba in 563, and its fame even extended to Sweden and Denmark, whose
kings at one time were brought here for interment. We were fortunate in
having a fine day, the sky being clear and the sea perfectly smooth. We
were thus enabled to make landing at both isles, a thing that is often
impossible on account of the weather. This circular trip--for the return
is made by the Sound of Mull--is a remarkably beautiful one, the steamer
winding in and out through the straits among the islands and between
shores wild and broken, though always picturesque and often impressive.
Many of the hills are crowned with ruined fortresses and occasionally an
imposing modern summer residence is to be seen. Competent judges declare
that provided the weather is fine no more delightful short excursion by
steamer can be made on the British coast than the one just described.
Three miles from Oban lies Dunstafnage Castle, a royal residence of the
Pictish kings, bearing the marks of extreme antiquity. It occupies a
commanding position on a point of land extending far into the sea and
almost surrounded by water at high tide. We visited it in the fading
twilight, and a lonelier, more ghostly place it would be hard to
imagine. From this old castle was taken the stone of destiny upon which
the Pictish kings were crowned, but which is now the support of the
coronation chair in Westminster Abbey. A place so rich in romantic
legend could not be expected to escape the knowledge of the Wizard of
the North and Scott made more than one visit to this solitary ruin. As a
result the story of Dunstafnage has been woven into the "Legend of
Montrose" as "Ardenvohr" and the description may be easily recognized by
any one who visits the old castle.

Oban is modern, a place of many and excellent hotels fronting on the
bay. So far, only a small per cent of its visitors are Americans, and
the indifferent roads leading to the town discourage the motorist. Had
we adhered to the route outlined for us by the Motor Union Secretary, we
should have missed it altogether. We had made a stop in the town two
years before, and yet there are few places in Britain that we would
rather visit a third time than Oban.



The north of Scotland is rapidly becoming little more than a
pleasure-ground for the people of the Kingdom, and its attractions are
yearly drawing a larger number of Americans. There are practically no
European visitors, but that is largely true of the entire Kingdom. The
people of the Continent consider Britain a chilly, unattractive land.
Its historic and literary traditions, so dear to the average American,
who holds a common language, do not appeal to those who think their own
countries superior to any other in these particulars.

It is only a natural consequence that Scotland, outside of the three or
four largest cities, is becoming, like Switzerland, a nation of
hotelkeepers--and very excellent ones they are. The Scotch hotels
average as good as any in the world. One finds them everywhere in the
Highlands. Every lake, every ruin frequented by tourists has its hotel,
many of them fine structures of native granite, substantially built and
splendidly furnished.

We left Oban over the route by which we came, since no other was
recommended to motorists. Our original plan to follow the Caledonian
Canal to Inverness was abandoned on account of difficult roads and
numerous ferries with poor and infrequent service. After waiting three
hours to get an "accumulator" which had been turned over to a local
repair man thirty-six hours before with instructions to have it charged
and returned promptly, we finally succeeded in getting off. This delay
is an example of those which we encountered again and again from failure
to get prompt service, especially when we were making an effort to get
away before ten or eleven in the morning.

It was no hardship to follow more leisurely than before the road past
Loch Awe, whose sheet of limpid water lay like a mirror around Kilchurn
Castle under the cloudless, noonday sky. A little farther on, at
Dalmally, we paused at a pleasant old country hotel, where the delicious
Scotch strawberries were served fresh from the garden. It was a quaint,
clean, quiet place, and the landlord told us that aside from the old
castles and fine scenery in the vicinity, its chief attraction to guests
was trout-fishing in neighboring streams. We were two days in passing
through the heart of the Highlands from Oban to Inverness over about two
hundred miles of excellent road running through wild and often beautiful
scenery, but there were few historic spots as compared with the coast
country. The road usually followed the edge of the hills, often with a
lake or mountain stream on one hand. From Crianlarich we followed the
sparkling Dochart until we reached the shore of Loch Tay, about twenty
miles distant. From the mountainside we had an unobstructed view of this
narrow but lovely lake, lying for a distance of twenty miles between
ridges of sharply rising hills. White, low-hung clouds half hid the
mountains on the opposite side of the loch, giving the delightful effect
of light and shadow for which the Scotch Highlands are famous and which
the pictures of Watson, Graham and Farquharson have made familiar to
nearly everyone.

At the northern end of the lake we caught distant glimpses of the
battlemented towers of Taymouth Castle, home of the Marquis of
Breadalbane, which, though modern, is one of the most imposing of the
Scotch country seats. If the castle itself is imposing, what shall we
say of the estate, extending as it does westward to the Sound of Mull, a
distance of one hundred miles--a striking example of the inequalities of
the feudal system. Just before we crossed the bridge over the Tay River
near the outlet of the lake, we noticed a gray old mansion with many
Gothic towers and gables, Grandtully Castle, made famous by Scott as the
Tully-Veolan of Waverly. Near by is Kinniard House, where Robert Louis
Stevenson wrote "Treasure Island."

A few miles farther on we came to Pitlochry, a surprisingly well built
resort with excellent hotels and a mammoth "Hydropathic" that dominates
the place from a high hill. The town is situated in the very center of
the Highlands, surrounded by hills that supply the gray granite used in
its construction; and here we broke our journey for the night.

Our way to Inverness was through a sparsely inhabited, wildly broken
country, with half a dozen mean-looking villages at considerable
distances from each other and an occasional hut or wayside inn between.
Although it was July and quite warm for the north of Scotland, the snow
still lingered on many of the low mountains, and in some places it
seemed that we might reach it by a few minutes' walk. There was little
along the road to remind one of the stirring times or the plaided and
kilted Highlander that Scott has led us to associate with this country.
We saw one old man, the keeper of a little solitary inn in the very
heart of the hills, arrayed in the full glory of the old-time
garb--plaid, tartan, sporran and skene-dhu, all set off by the plumed
Glengarry cap--a picturesque old fellow indeed. And we met farther on
the way a dirty-looking youth with his bagpipes slung over his
shoulder--in dilapidated modern garb he was anything but a fit
descendant of the minstrels whose fame has come down to us in song and
story. Still, he was glad to play for us, and despite his general
resemblance to an every-day American tramp, it was something to have
heard the skirl of the bag-pipe in the Pass of Killiekrankie. And after
all, the hills, the vales and the lochs were there, and everywhere on
the low green mountains grazed endless flocks of sheep. They lay
leisurely in the roadway or often trotted unconcernedly in front of the
car, occasioning at times a speed limit even more unsatisfactory than
that imposed in the more populous centers by the police traps.
Incidentally we learned that the finest sheep in the world--and vast
numbers of them--are produced in Great Britain. When we compare them
with the class of animals raised in America it is easy to see why our
wool and mutton average so greatly inferior.


From Painting by D. Sherrin.]

A clean, quiet, charming city is Inverness, "the capital of the
Highlands," as the guide-books have it. It is situated on both shores of
its broad, sparkling river--so shallow that the small boys with
turned-up pantaloons wade across it in summer time--while an arm of the
sea defines the boundary on the northeast. Though tradition has it that
Macbeth built a castle on the site of the present structure, it
disappeared centuries ago, and there is now little evidence of antiquity
to be found in the town. The modern castle is a massive, rambling,
brown-stone building less than a hundred years old, now serving as a
county court. The cathedral is recent, having been completed in the last
quarter of a century. It is an imposing church of red stone, the great
entrance being flanked by low, square-topped towers. As a center for
tourists, Inverness is increasingly popular and motor cars are very
common. The roads of the surrounding country are generally excellent,
and a trip of two hundred miles will take one to John O'Groats, the
extreme northern point of Scotland. The country around has many spots of
interest. Cawdor Castle, where tradition says Macbeth murdered Duncan,
is on the Nairn road, and on the way to this one may also visit Culloden
Moor, a grim, shelterless waste, where the adherents of Prince Charlie
were defeated April 16th, 1746. This was the last battle fought on
British soil, and the site is marked by a rude round tower built from
stones gathered from the battlefield.

From Inverness an unsurpassed highway leads to Aberdeen, a distance of a
little over one hundred miles. It passes through a beautiful country,
the northeastern Scottish Lowlands, which looked as prosperous and
productive as any section we saw. The smaller towns appeared much better
than the average we had so far seen in Scotland; Nairn, Huntly, Forres,
Keith and Elgin more resembling the better English towns of similar size
than Scotch towns which we had previously passed through. At Elgin are
the ruins of its once splendid cathedral, which in its best days easily
ranked as the largest and most imposing church in Scotland. Time has
dealt hardly with it, and the shattered fragments which remain are only
enough to confirm the story of its magnificence. Fire, and vandals who
tore the lead from the roof for loot having done their worst, the
cathedral served the unsentimental Scots of the vicinity as a
stone-quarry until recent years, but it is now owned by the crown and
every precaution taken to arrest further decay.

The skies were lowering when we left Inverness and the latter half of
the journey was made in the hardest rainstorm we encountered on our
tour. We could not see ten yards ahead of us and the water poured down
the hills in torrents, yet our car ran smoothly on, the fine macadam
road being little affected by the deluge. The heavy rain ceased by the
time we reached Inverurie, a gray, bleak-looking little town, closely
following a winding street, but the view from the high bridge which we
crossed just on leaving the place made full amends for the general
ugliness of the village.


It would be hard to find anywhere a more beautiful city than Aberdeen,
with her clean, massively built structures of native gray granite,
thickly sprinkled with mica facets that make it fairly glitter in the
sunlight. Everything seems to have been planned by the architect to
produce the most pleasing effect, and careful note must have been taken
of surroundings and location in fitting many of the public buildings
into their niches. We saw few more imposing structures in Britain than
the new postoffice at Aberdeen, and it was typical of the solidity and
architectural magnificence of the Queen City of the North. But Aberdeen
will be on the route of any tourist who goes to Northern Scotland, so I
will not write of it here. It is a great motoring center, with finely
built and well equipped garages.

As originally planned we were to go southward from Aberdeen by the way
of Braemar and Balmoral in the very heart of the Highland country--the
route usually followed by British motorists. It passes through wild
scenery, but the country has few historic attractions. The Motor Union
representative had remarked that we should probably want to spend
several days at Braemar, famous for its scenic surroundings--the wild
and picturesque dales, lakes and hills near at hand; but to Americans,
from the country of the Yellowstone and Yosemite, the scenery of
Scotland can be only an incident in a tour. From this consideration, we
preferred to take the coast road southward, which, though it passes
through a comparatively tame-looking country, is thickly strewn with
places replete with stirring and romantic incidents of Scottish
history. Nor had we any cause to regret our choice.

Fifteen miles south of Aberdeen we came in sight of Dunnottar Castle,
lying about two miles from the highway. We left the car by the roadside
and followed the footpath through the fields. The ruin stands on a high,
precipitous headland projecting far out into the ocean and cut off from
the land side by a deep, irregular ravine, and the descent and ascent of
the almost perpendicular sides was anything but an easy task. A single
winding footpath leads to the grim old gateway, and we rang the bell
many times before the custodian admitted us. Inside the gate the steep
ascent continues through a rude, tunnellike passageway, its sides for a
distance of one hundred feet or more pierced with many an embrasure for
archers or musketeers. Emerging from this we came into the castle court,
the center of the small plateau on the summit of the rock. Around us
rose the broken, straggling walls, bare and bleak, without a shred of
ivy or wall-flower to hide their grim nakedness. The place was typical
of a rude, semi-barbarous age, an age of rapine, murder and ferocious
cruelty, and its story is as terrific as one would anticipate from its
forbidding aspect. Here it was the wont of robber barons to retire with
their prisoners and loot; and later, on account of the inaccessibility,
state and political prisoners were confined here from time to time.
In the frightful "Whig's Vault," a semi-subterranean dungeon, one
hundred and sixty covenanters--men and women--were for several months
confined by orders of the infamous Claverhouse. A single tiny window
looking out on the desolate ocean furnished the sole light and air for
the great cavern, and the story of the suffering of the captives is too
dreadful to tell here. The vault was ankle deep in mire and so crowded
were the prisoners that no one could sit without leaning upon another.
In desperation and at great risk, a few attempted to escape from the
window, whence they clambered down the precipitous rock; but most of
them were re-taken, and after frightful tortures were thrown into a
second dungeon underneath the first, where light and air were almost
wholly excluded. Such was Scotland in the reign of Charles Stuart II,
and such a story seemed in keeping with the vast, dismal old fortress.


But Dunnottar, secluded and lonely as it was, did not escape the
far-reaching arm of the Lord Protector, and in 1562 his cannon, planted
on the height opposite the headland, soon brought the garrison to terms.
It was known that the Scottish regalia--the crown believed to be the
identical one worn by Bruce at his coronation, the jewelled scepter and
the sword of state presented to James IV by the pope--had been taken for
safety to Dunnottar, held in repute as the most impregnable stronghold
in the North. The English maintained a close blockade by sea and land
and were in strong hopes of securing the coveted relics. The story is
that Mrs. Granger, the wife of a minister of a nearby village, who had
been allowed by the English to visit the castle, on her departure
carried the relics with her, concealed about her clothing. She passed
through the English lines without interference, and the precious
articles were safely disposed of by her husband, who buried them under
the flagstones in his church at Kinneff, where they remained until the
restoration of 1660. The English were intensely disappointed at the
loss. The minister and his wife did not escape suspicion and were even
subjected to torture, but they bravely refused to give information as to
the whereabouts of the regalia.

We wandered about, following our rheumatic old guide, who pointed out
the different apartments to us and, in Scotch so broad that we had to
follow him very closely, told us the story of the fortress. From the
windows everywhere was the placid, shimmering summer sea, its surface
broken into silvery ripples by the fresh morning wind, but it was left
to the imagination to conceive the awful desolation of Dunnottar Castle
on a gray and stormy day. The old man conducted us to the keep, and I
looked over a year's record in the visitors' book without finding a
single American registered, and was more than ever impressed as to the
manner in which the motor car will often bring the tourist from the
States into a comparatively undiscovered country. The high tower of the
keep, several hundred feet above the sea, afforded scope for a most
magnificent outlook. One could get a full sweep of the bleak and sterile
country through which we had passed, lying between Aberdeen and
Stonehaven, and which Scott celebrated as the Muir of Drumthwacket. It
was with a feeling of relief that we passed out of the forbidding
portals into the fresh air of the pleasant July day, leaving the old
custodian richer by a few shillings, to wonder that the "American
Invasion" had reached this secluded old fortress on the wild headland
washed by the German Ocean.

From Stonehaven we passed without special incident to Montrose,
following an excellent but rather uninteresting road, though an
occasional fishing-village and frequent view of the ocean broke the
monotony of the flying miles. Montrose is an ancient town delightfully
situated between the ocean and a great basin connected with the sea by a
broad strait, over which a suspension bridge five hundred feet long
carried us southward. I recall that it was at Montrose where an obliging
garage man loaned me an "accumulator"--my batteries had been giving
trouble--scouting the idea of a deposit, and I gave him no more than my
agreement to return his property when I reached Edinburgh.

At Arbroath are the ruins of the most extensive of the Scotch abbeys,
scanty indeed, but still enough to show its state and importance in the
"days of faith." Here once reigned the good abbott celebrated by Southey
in his ballad of Ralph the Rover, familiar to every schoolboy. Ten miles
off the coast is the reef where

    "The abbott of Aberbrothok
    Had placed a bell on the Inchcape rock.
    Like a buoy in the storm it floated and swung,
    And over the waves its warning rung."

And where the pirate, out of pure malice, "To vex the abbott of
Aberbrothok," cut the bell from its buoy only to be lost himself on the
reef a year later. The abbey was founded by William the Lion in 1178,
but war, fire and fanaticism have left it sadly fragmentary. Now it is
the charge of the town, but the elements continue to war upon it and the
brittle red sandstone of which it is built shows deeply the wear of the
sea wind.

Dundee, no longer the "Bonnie Dundee" of the old ballad, is a great
straggling manufacturing city, whose ancient landmarks have been almost
swept away. Its churches are modern, its one remaining gateway of
doubtful antiquity, and there is little in the city itself to detain the
tourist. If its points of interest are too few to warrant a stay, its
hotels--should the one given in the guide-book and also locally reputed
to be the best, really merit this distinction--will hardly prove an
attraction. It is a large, six-story building, fairly good-looking from
the outside, but inside dirty and dilapidated, with ill-furnished and
uncomfortable rooms. When we inquired of the manageress as to what might
be of especial interest in Dundee, she considered awhile and finally
suggested--the cemetery. From our hotel window we had a fine view of the
broad estuary of the Tay with its great bridge, said to be the longest
in the world. It recalled the previous Tay bridge, which fell in a storm
in 1879, carrying down a train, from which not a single one of the
seventy or more passengers escaped. Around Dundee is crowded much of
historic Scotland, and many excursions worth the while may be made from
the city by those whose time permits.

From Dundee an excellent road leads to Stirling by the way of Perth.
There is no more beautiful section in Scotland than this, though its
beauty is not the rugged scenery of the Highlands. Low hills, rising
above the wooded valleys, with clear streams winding through them;
unusually prosperous-looking farm-houses; and frequent historic ruins
and places--all combine to make the forty or fifty miles a delightful
drive. We did not pause at Perth, a city with a long line of
traditions, nor at Dunblane, with its severely plain cathedral founded
in 1100 but recently restored.

Stirling, the ancient capital, with its famous castle, its memories of
early kings, of Wallace, Bruce and of Mary Stuart, and with its
wonderfully beautiful and historic surroundings, is perhaps the most
interesting town of Scotland. No one who pretends to see Scotland will
miss it, and no motor tour worthy of the name could be planned that
would not lead through the quaint old streets. From afar one catches a
glimpse of the castle, perched, like that of Edinburgh, on a mighty
rock, rising almost sheer from a delightfully diversified plain. It is a
many-towered structure, piercing the blue sky and surrounded by an air
of sullen inaccessibility, while the red-cross flag flying above it
proclaims it a station of the king's army. It is not by any means the
castle of the days of Bruce and Wallace, having been rebuilt and adapted
to the purpose of military barracks. True, many of the ancient portions
remain, but the long, laborious climb to the summit of the rock and the
battlements of the castle will, if the day be fine, be better repaid by
the magnificent prospect than by anything else. If the barrack castle is
a little disappointing, the wide sweep of country fading away into the
blue mountains on the west---Ben Venue, Ben Ledi and Ben Lomond of "The
Lady of the Lake"--eastward the rich lowlands, running for miles and
miles down the fertile valley of the Forth, dotted with many towns and
villages; the wooded hills to the north with the massive tower of the
Wallace monument and the dim outlines of the ruins of Cambuskenneth
Abbey; or, near at hand, the old town under your very eye and the
historic field of Bannockburn just adjoining, will make ample amends.
The story of "The Lady of the Lake" pictures Stirling in its palmiest
days, and no one who visits the castle will forget the brilliant closing
scene of the poem. Here too,

    "The rose of Stuart's line
    Has left the fragrance of her name,"

for Mary was hurried for safety to the castle a few days after her birth
at Linlithgow Palace, and as a mere baby was crowned Queen of Scotland
in the chapel. The parish church was also the scene of many coronations,
and in the case of James VI, later James I of England, John Knox
preached the sermon.

One cannot go far in Scotland without crossing the path of Prince
Charlie or standing in the shadow of some ancient building associated
with the melancholy memory of Queen Mary, and, despite the unquestioned
loyalty of the Scottish people to the present government, there seems to
linger everywhere a spirit of regret over the failure of the chevalier
to regain the throne of his fathers. Perhaps it is scarcely
expressed--only some word dropped in casual conversation, some flash of
pride as you are pointed to the spots where Prince Charlie's triumphs
were won, or some thinly veiled sentiment in local guide-books will make
it clear to you that Scotland still cherishes the memory of the prince
for whom her fathers suffered so much. Passing Falkirk, now a large
manufacturing town, dingy with the smoke from its great furnaces, we
were reminded that near here in 1746 the prince gained one of his most
decisive victories, the precursor of the capture of Edinburgh by his
army. A few miles farther on is Linlithgow with its famous palace, the
birthplace of the Queen of Scots. This more accords with our idea of a
royal residence than the fortified castles, for it evidently was never
intended as a defensive fortress. It stands on the margin of a lovely
lake, and considering its delightful situation and its comparative
comfort, it is not strange that it was a favorite residence of the
Scottish kings. It owes its dismantled condition to the wanton spite of
the English dragoons, who, when they retreated from Linlithgow in face
of the Highland army in 1746, left the palace in flames.

From Linlithgow the broad highway led us directly into Edinburgh by the
way of Princess Street.



Two men above all others and everything else are responsible for the
romantic fame which the bleak and largely barren Land of Scots enjoys
the English-speaking world over. If Robert Burns and Walter Scott had
never told the tales and sung the songs of their native land, no endless
streams of pilgrims would pour to its shrines and its history and
traditions would be vastly second in interest to those of England and
Wales. But the Wizard of the North touched Scotia's rough hills with the
rosy hues of his romance. He threw the glamour of his story around its
crumbling ruins. Through the magic of his facile pen, its petty chiefs
and marauding nobles assumed heroic mould and its kings and
queens--rulers over a mere handful of turbulent people--were awakened
into a majestic reality. Who would care aught for Prince Charlie or his
horde of beggarly Highlanders were it not for the song of Burns and the
story of Scott? Nor would the melancholy fate of Queen Mary have been
brought so vividly before the world--but wherefore multiply instances to
illustrate an admitted fact?

In Edinburgh we were near the center from which Scott's vast influences
radiated. The traditions of Burns overshadowed Southwestern Scotland and
the memories of Scott seem to be indentified with the cities, the
villages, the solitary ruins, the hills and vales of the eastern coast.
We note as we pass along Princess Street, one of the finest
thoroughfares in Britain, the magnificent monument to the great
author--the most majestic tribute ever erected to a literary man--a
graceful Gothic spire, towering two hundred feet into the sky. The city
is full of his memories. Here are many of the places he celebrated in
his stories, his haunts for years, and the house where he retired after
financial disaster to face a self-chosen battle with a gigantic debt
which he might easily have evaded by a mere figment of the law.

However, one can hardly afford to take from a motor tour the time which
should rightly be given to Edinburgh, for the many attractions of the
Athens of the North might well occupy a solid week. Fortunately, a
previous visit by rail two years before had solved the problem for us
and we were fairly familiar with the more salient features of the city.
There is one side-trip that no one should miss, and though we had once
journeyed by railway train to Melrose Abbey and Abbottsford House, we
could not forego a second visit to these famous shrines and to Dryburgh
Abbey, which we had missed before. Thus again we had the opportunity of
contrasting the motor car and the railway train. I remembered distinctly
our former trip to Melrose by rail. It was on a Saturday afternoon
holiday when crowds of trippers were leaving the city, packed in the
uncomfortable compartments like sardines in a box--not one in a dozen
having a chance to sit. We were driven from Melrose to Abbottsford House
at a snail's pace, consuming so much time that a trip to Dryburgh Abbey
was out of the question, though we had left Edinburgh about noon. By
motor, we were out of the city about three o'clock, and though we
covered more than eighty miles, we were back before lamp-lighting time.
The road to Dryburgh Abbey runs nearly due south from Edinburgh, and the
country through which we passed was hardly so prosperous looking as the
northeastern section of Scotland--much of it rather rough-looking
country, adapted only for sheep-grazing and appearing as if it might be
reclaimed moorland.

The tomb of Walter Scott is in Dryburgh Abbey, and with the possible
exception of Melrose it probably has more visitors than any other point
in Scotland outside of Edinburgh. The tourist season had hardly begun,
yet the caretaker told us that more than seventy people had been there
during the day and most of them were Americans. The abbey lies on the
margin of the River Tweed, the silver stream so beloved of Scott, and
though sadly fragmentary, is most religiously cared for and the decay of
time and weather held in check by constant repairs and restoration. The
many thousands of admission fees every year no doubt form a fund which
will keep this good work going indefinitely. The weather-beaten walls
and arches were overgrown with masses of ivy and the thick, green grass
of the newly mown lawn spread beneath like a velvet carpet. We had
reached the ruin so late that it was quite deserted, and we felt the
spirit of the place all the more as we wandered about in the evening
silence. Scott's tomb, that of his wife and their eldest son are in one
of the chapels whose vaulted roof still remains in position. Tall iron
gates between the arches enclose the graves, which are marked with
massive sarcophagi of Scotch granite. Dryburgh Abbey was at one time the
property of the Scott family, which accounts for its use as their
burial-ground. It has passed into other hands, but interments are still
made on rare occasions. The spot was one which always interested and
delighted Scott and it was his expressed wish that he be buried there.

We had been warned that the byways leading to the abbey from the north
of the Tweed were not very practicable for motors and we therefore
approached it from the other side. This made it necessary to cross the
river on a flimsy suspension bridge for foot-passengers only, and a
notice at each end peremptorily forbade that more than half a dozen
people pass over the bridge at one time. After crossing the river it was
a walk of more than a mile to the abbey, and as we were tempted to
linger rather long it was well after six o'clock when we re-crossed the
river and resumed our journey. Melrose is twelve miles farther on and
the road crosses a series of rather sharp hills. We paused for a second
glimpse of Melrose Abbey, which has frequently been styled the most
perfect and beautiful ecclesiastical ruin in Britain. We were of the
opinion, however, that we had seen at least three or four others more
extensive and of greater architectural merit. Undoubtedly the high
praise given Melrose is due to the fame which it acquired from the poems
and stories of Scott. The thousands of pilgrims who come every year are
attracted by this alone, since the abbey had no extraordinary history
and no tomb of king or hero is to be found in its precincts. Were it not
for the weird interest which the "Lay of the Last Minstrel" has thrown
around Melrose, its fame would probably be no greater than that of the
abbeys of Jedburgh and Kelso in the same neighborhood. Abbottsford House
is only three miles from Melrose, but it is closed to visitors after
five o'clock and we missed a second visit, which we should have liked
very much. Upon such things the motorist must fully inform himself or
he is liable to many disappointments by reaching his objective point at
the wrong time.

We returned to Edinburgh by the way of Galashiels, a manufacturing town
of considerable size that lay in a deep valley far below the road which
we were following along the edges of the wooded hills. This road
abounded in dangerous turns and caution was necessary when rounding
sharp curves that, in places, almost described a circle. We had a clear
right-of-way, however, and reached Edinburgh before nine o'clock. A
delightful feature of summer touring in Britain is the long evening,
which is often the pleasantest time for traveling. The highways are
usually quite deserted and the mellow effect of the sunsets and the long
twilights often lend an additional charm to the landscapes. In the
months of July and August in Scotland daylight does not begin to fade
away until from nine to ten, and in northern sections the dawn begins as
early as two or three o'clock. During our entire tour we found it
necessary to light our lamps only two or three times, although we were
often on the road after nine o'clock. Though Edinburgh has unusually
broad and well paved streets, it is a trying place for a motorist. The
people make little effort to keep to the sidewalk, but let the fellow
who is driving the car do the looking out for them. In no city through
which we passed did I find greater care necessary. Despite all this,
accidents are rare, owing to the fact that drivers of motor cars in
Great Britain have had the lesson of carefulness impressed upon them by
strict and prompt enforcement of police regulations.

We left Edinburgh the next forenoon with a view of making
Berwick-on-Tweed our stopping place for the evening--not a long distance
in miles but a considerable one measured in spots of historical
importance. The road much of the way skirts the ocean and is a
magnificent highway leading through a number of quaint towns famous in
Scotch song and story. Numerous battlefields are scattered along the
way, but we found it difficult to locate a battlefield when we passed
it, and generally quit trying. In fact, in the days of border warfare
the whole south of Scotland was the scene of almost continuous strife,
and battles of greater or less importance were fought everywhere with
the English in the centuries of fierce hatred which existed between the
two nations. The Scots held their own wonderfully well, considering
their greatly inferior numbers and the general poverty of their country.
The union, after all, was brought about not by conquest but by a Scotch
king going to London to assume the crown of the two kingdoms. The famous
old town of Berwick-on-Tweed bore the brunt of the incursions from both
sides on the eastern coast, as did Carlisle on the west. The town of
Dunbar, situated on the coast about midway between Edinburgh and
Berwick, was of great importance in border history. It had an extensive
and strongly fortified castle, situated on the margin of a cliff
overhanging the ocean, and which was for a time the residence of Queen
Mary after her marriage with Darnley. Nothing now remains of this great
structure save a few crumbling walls of red sandstone, which are
carefully propped up and kept in the best possible repair by the
citizens, who have at last come to realize the cash value of such a
ruin. If such a realization had only come a hundred years ago, a great
service would have been done the historian and the antiquarian. But this
is no less true of a thousand other towns than of Dunbar. No quainter
edifice did we see in all Britain than Dunbar's Fifteenth Century town
hall. It seemed more characteristic of an old German town than of
Scotland. This odd old building is still the seat of the city


Our route from Dunbar ran for a long way between the hills of Lammermoor
and the ocean and abounded in delightful and striking scenery. We were
forcibly reminded of Scott's mournful story, "The Bride of Lammermoor,"
as we passed among the familiar scenes mentioned in the book, and it was
the influence of this romantic tale that led us from the main road into
narrow byways and sleepy little coast towns innocent of modern
progress and undisturbed by the rattle of railways trains. No great
distance from Berwick and directly on the ocean stands Fast Castle, said
to be the prototype of the Wolf's Crag of "Lammermoor." This wild story
had always interested me in my boyhood days and for years I had dreamed
of the possibility of some time seeing the supposed retreat of the
melancholy Master of Ravenswood. We had great difficulty in locating the
castle, none of the people seeming to know anything about it, and we
wandered many miles among the hills through narrow, unmarked byways,
with little idea of where we were really going. At last, after dint of
inquiry, we came upon a group of houses which we were informed were the
headquarters of a large farm of about two thousand acres, and
practically all the people who worked on the farm lived, with their
families, in these houses. The superintendent knew of Fast Castle, which
he said was in a lonely and inaccessible spot, situated on a high,
broken headland overlooking the ocean. It was two or three miles distant
and the road would hardly admit of taking the car any farther. He did
not think the ruin was worth going to see, anyhow; it had been cared for
by no one and within his memory the walls had fallen in and crumbled
away. Either his remarks or the few miles walk discouraged me, and after
having traveled fully thirty miles to find this castle, I turned about
and went on without going to the place at all, and of course I now
regret it as much as anything I failed to do on our whole tour. I shall
have to go to Fast Castle yet--by motor car.

After regaining the main road, it was only a short run along the edge of
the ocean to Berwick-on-Tweed, which we reached early in the evening. I
recall no more delightful day during our tour. It had been fresh and
cool, and the sky was perfectly clear. For a great part of the way the
road had passed within view of the ocean, whose deep unruffled blue,
entirely unobscured by the mists which so often hang over the northern
seas, stretched away until it was lost in the pale, sapphire hues of the
skies. The country itself was fresh and bright after abundant rains, and
as haymaking was in progress in many places along the road, the air was
laden with the scent of the newly mown grasses. Altogether, it was a day
long to be remembered.

Berwick-on-Tweed lies partly in England and partly in Scotland, the
river which runs through it forming the boundary line. An odd bridge
built by James I connects the two parts of the town, the highest point
of its archway being nearest the Scottish shore and giving the effect of
"having its middle at one end," as some Scotch wit has expressed it. The
town was once strongly fortified, especially on the Scottish side, and
a castle was built on a hill commanding the place. Traces of the wall
surrounding the older part of the city still remain; it is easy to
follow it throughout its entire course. When the long years of border
warfare ended, a century and a half ago, the town inside of the wall
must have appeared much the same as it does today. It is a town of
crooked streets and quaint buildings, set down without the slightest
reference to the points of the compass. The site of the castle is
occupied by the railway station, though a few crumbling walls of the
former structure still remain. The station itself is now called The
Castle and reproduces on a smaller scale some of the architectural
features of the ancient fortress.

We started southward from Berwick the following morning over the fine
road leading through Northumberland. About ten miles off this road, and
reached by narrow byways, is the pleasant little seacoast village of
Bamborough, and the fame of its castle tempted us to visit it. I had
often wondered why some of the old-time castles were not restored to
their pristine magnificence--what we should have if Kenilworth or Raglan
were re-built and to their ancient glory there were added all the modern
conveniences for comfort. I found in Bamborough Castle a case exactly to
the point. Lord Armstrong, the millionaire shipbuilder, had purchased
this castle--almost a complete ruin--and when he began restoration only
the Norman tower of the keep was intact; and besides this there was
little except the foundation walls. Lord Armstrong entirely rebuilt the
castle, following the original plan and designs, and the result is one
of the most striking and pleasing of the palatial residences in England.
The situation, on a high headland extending into the ocean, commands a
view in every direction and completely dominates the sleepy little
village lying just beneath. The castle is of great antiquity, the
records showing that a fortress had been built on this side in the Fifth
Century by Ida, King of Northumberland, though the present building
largely reproduces the features of the one founded in the time of the


Lord Armstrong died the year before the work on the castle was completed
and it passed into the hands of his nephew. It is open to visitors only
one day in the week, and it happened, as usual, that we had arrived on
the wrong day. Fortunately, the family were absent, and our plea that we
were Americans who had come a long distance to see the place was quite
as effective here as in other cases. The housekeeper showed us the
palace in detail that we could hardly have hoped for under other
circumstances. The interior is fitted in the richest and most
magnificent style, and I have never seen the natural beauties of
woodwork brought out with better effect. How closely the old-time
construction was followed in the restoration is shown by the fact that
the great open roof of the banqueting hall is put together with wooden
pins, no nail having been used. The castle has every modern convenience,
even hot-water heating--a rare thing in England--being installed. When
we saw what an excellent result had been attained in the restoration, we
could not but wonder that such a thing has not oftener been done. In the
village churchyard is the massive gray granite monument erected to the
memory of Grace Darling, who lived and died in Bamborough, and a brass
tablet in the ancient church is inscribed with the record of her
heroism. The lighthouse which was kept by her father is just off
Bamborough Head, and it was from this, in the face of a raging storm,
that she launched her frail boat and saved several people from a
foundering ship. Only four years later she succumbed to consumption, but
her unparalleled bravery has made the name of this young girl a
household word wherever the English language is spoken.

On leaving Bamborough we came as nearly getting lost in the narrow,
winding byways as at any time during our tour. A bridge under repair on
the direct route to the main road compelled us to resort to byways which
were unmarked by signboards and in as ill condition as many American
roads. Nor could the people of whom we inquired give us intelligent
direction. We finally reached the road again after a loss of an hour or

A short time afterwards we came to Alnwick, whose castle is one of the
most extensive and complete specimens of mediaeval architecture in
England. In the last century it has been largely restored, following out
the original design of the exterior, at least, and is now the residence
of the Duke of Northumberland. Usually it is open to visitors, but in
the confusion that followed the visit of the king the day before, the
castle and its great park had been closed until the next week. We had
seen the interior of so many similar places that this was not so much of
a disappointment, especially as we had a splendid view of the old
fortress from the outside and also from the courtyard. On the
battlements of this castle are numerous stone figures of men in the act
of hurling down missiles on the heads of foes who might besiege it. This
was quite common in early days and feudal barons perhaps thought to make
up for their shortage of real men by placing these effigies on the walls
of their fortresses, but Alnwick is the only castle on which the figures
still remain. The town itself was still in holiday attire in honor of
its royal guest of the preceding day. The buildings were covered with
the national colors and many decorations and illuminations had been
planned to celebrate the occasion. Alnwick is one of the most typical
of the English feudal towns. It is owned largely by the Duke of
Northumberland, who appears to be popular with his tenantry, the latter
having erected, in honor of their noble landlord, a lofty column
surmounted by the figure of a lion. Every view from the distance for
miles around is dominated by the battlemented and many-towered walls of
the castle, which surmounts a hill overlooking the town. The story of
Alnwick and its castle would be long to tell, for they bore the brunt of
many Scotch incursions and suffered much at the hands of the fierce
marauders from the north.

Our afternoon's run led us from Alnwick to Durham, passing through
Newcastle-on-Tyne. Newcastle is a large commercial city, famous for its
mining and shipbuilding industries, and has but little to engage the
attention of the tourist. Our pause was a short one, and we reached
Durham in good time after a run of over one hundred miles, broken by
several lengthy stops on the way.

The main street of Durham in many places is barely wide enough for two
vehicles to pass. It winds and twists through the town in such a way
that one seems to be almost moving in a circle at times and constant
inquiry is necessary to keep from being lost on the main street of a
city of fifteen or twenty thousand. The town is almost as much of a
jumble as if its red, tile-roof buildings had been promiscuously thrown
to their places from Cathedral Hill. Durham is strictly an
ecclesiastical center. There is little except the cathedral, which, in
addition to being one of the most imposing, occupies perhaps the finest
site of any of the great English churches. Together with Durham Castle,
it monopolizes the summit of a hill which at its base is three-quarters
surrounded by the river. The greater part of the cathedral dates back
seven or eight hundred years, but additions have been made from time to
time so that nearly all styles of architecture are represented.
Tradition has it that it was founded by St. Cuthbert, whose chief
characteristic is declared to have been his antipathy toward women of
all degrees. A curious relic of this peculiarity of the saint remains in
a granite cross set in the center of the floor of the nave, beyond
which, in the earlier days, no woman was ever allowed to pass. The
interior of the church is mainly in the massive and imposing Norman
style. The carved stone screen is one of the most elaborate and perfect
in Britain, and dates back from the Thirteenth Century. The verger told
us of the extreme care which must be taken to preserve this relic. He
said that the stone of the screen is rather soft and brittle, and that
in cleaning it was never touched, the dust being blown away with
bellows. Durham, in common with most of the cathedrals, suffered
severely at the hands of the Parliamentarians under Cromwell. It was
used as a prison for a part of the Scotch army captured at the battle of
Dunbar, and as these Presbyterians had almost as much contempt for
images as the Cromwellians themselves, many of the beautiful monuments
in the cathedral were broken up. Durham, like Canterbury, is a town that
is much favored by the artists, and deservedly so. The old buildings
lining the winding river and canal form in many places delightful vistas
in soft colors almost as picturesque as bits of Venice itself. The
hotels, however, are far from first-class, and one would probably be
more comfortable at Newcastle. Speaking of hotels, we did not at any
time engage accommodations in advance, and Durham was the only town
where we found the principal hotel with all rooms taken. With the rapid
increase of motoring, however, it will probably become necessary to
telegraph for accommodations at the best hotels. And telegraphing is an
exceedingly easy thing in England. A message can be sent from any
postoffice at a cost of sixpence for the first ten words.



York is by far the largest of the English shires, a widely diversified
country, ranging from fertile farm land to broken hills and waste
moorland, while its river valleys and considerable coast line present
greatly varied but always picturesque scenery. The poet describes the
charms of Yorkshire as yielding

    "Variety without end, sweet interchange
    Of hill and valley, river, wood and plain."

Nor did we find this description at all inapt as we drove over its
excellent roads during the fine July weather. But the Yorkshire country
is doubly interesting, for if the landscape is of surpassing beauty, the
cities, the villages, the castles and abbeys, and the fields where some
of the fiercest battles in Britain have been fought, have intertwined
their associations with every hill and valley. Not only the size of the
shire, but its position--midway between London and the Scottish border,
and extending almost from coast to coast--made it a bulwark, as it were,
against the incursions of the Scots and their numerous sympathizers in
the extreme north of England. No part of England is more thickly strewn
with attractions for the American tourist and in no other section do
conditions for motor travel average better.

From London to York, the capital city of the shire, runs the Great North
Road, undoubtedly the finest highway in all Britain. It is laid out on a
liberal scale, magnificently surfaced and bordered much of the way by
wide and beautifully kept lawns and at times skirted with majestic
trees. We saw a facsimile of a broadside poster issued about a century
ago announcing that the new lightning coach service installed on this
road between London and York would carry passengers the distance of one
hundred and eighty-eight miles in the astonishingly short space of four
days. This coach, of course, traveled by relays, and at what was then
considered breakneck speed. Over this same highway it would now be an
easy feat for a powerful car to cover the distance in three or four
hours. The great North Road was originally constructed by the Romans to
maintain the quickest possible communication between London and
Eboracum, as York was styled during the Roman occupation.

The limitation of our time had become such that we could but feel that
our tour through Yorkshire must be of the most superficial kind. Not
less than two weeks of motoring might well be spent in the county and
every day be full of genuine enjoyment. The main roads are among the
best in England and afford access to most of the important points. We
learned, however, that there is much of interest to be reached only from
byways, but that these may lead over steep and even dangerous hills and
are often in not much better condition than our American roads.

We left Durham about noon, following a rather indirect route to
Darlington; from thence, through hawthorne-bordered byways, we came to
Richmond, one of the quaintest and most representative of the old
Yorkshire towns. We happened here on market day and the town was crowded
with farmers from the surrounding country. Here we saw many types of the
Yorkshire man, famed for his shrewdness and fondness for what we would
call "dickering." Much of the buying and selling in English towns is
done on market day; live stock, produce, farm implements, and almost
every kind of merchandise are sold at auction in the public market
place. If a farmer wants to dispose of a horse or to buy a mowing
machine, he avails himself of this auction and the services of a
professional auctioneer. Such an individual was busily plying his
vocation in front of the King's Head Hotel, and the roars of laughter
from the farmers which greeted his sallies as he cried his wares
certainly seemed to indicate that the charge that Englishmen can not
appreciate humor--at least of a certain kind--is a base slander. As
Richmond is the center of one of the best farming districts in
Yorkshire, its market day was no doubt a typical one.

Richmond Castle at one time was one of the most formidable and strongly
situated of the northern fortresses. It stands on an almost
perpendicular rock, rising one hundred feet above the River Swale, but
with the exception of the Norman keep the ruins are scanty indeed. There
is enough of the enclosing walls to give some idea of the extent of the
original castle, which covered five acres, its magnificent position
commanding the whole of the surrounding country. The keep is now used as
a military storehouse. The soldier-guard in charge was very courteous
and relieved us the necessity of securing a pass from the commandant, as
was required by a notice at the castle entrance. He conducted us to the
top of the great tower, from which we were favored with one of the
finest views in Central England and one that is almost unobstructed in
every direction. Unfortunately, a blue mist obscured much of the
landscape, but the guard told us that on clear days York Minster, more
than forty miles away, could be easily seen. Near at hand, nestling in
the valley of the Swale, are the ivy-covered ruins of Easby Abbey; while
still nearer, on the hillside, the great tower of Grey Friars Church is
all that remains of another once extensive monastery. In no way can one
get a more adequate idea of the parklike beauty of the English
landscape than to view it from such point of vantage as the keep of
Richmond Castle. Richmond Church is an imposing structure standing near
the castle and has recently been restored as nearly as possible to its
ancient state. An odd feature of the church is the little shop built in
the base of the tower, where a tobacconist now plies his trade.

From the castle tower, looking down the luxuriant valley, we noticed at
no great distance, half hidden by the trees, the outlines of a ruined
church--the Easby Abbey which I have just mentioned as one of the
numerous Yorkshire ruins. It is but a few furlongs off the road by which
we left Richmond and the byway we entered dropped down a sharp hill to
the pleasant spot on the riverside, where the abbey stands. The location
is a rather secluded one and the painstaking care noticeable about so
many ruins is lacking. It is surrounded by trees, and a large elm
growing in the very midst of the walls and arches flung a network of sun
and shade over the crumbling stones. The murmur of the nearby Swale and
the notes of the English thrushes filled the air with soft melody. Amid
such surroundings, we hardly heard the old custodian as he pointed out
the different apartments and told us the story of the palmy days of the
abbey and of its final doom at the relentless hands of Henry VIII. Near
by is a tiny church, which no doubt had served the people of the
neighborhood as a place of worship since the abbey fell into ruin.

The day, which had so far been fine, soon began to turn cold--one of
those sudden and disagreeable changes that come in England and Scotland
in the very midst of summertime, an experience that happens so often
that one can not wonder at Byron's complaint of the English winter,
"closing in July to re-commence in August." At no time in the summer
were we able to dispense for any length of time with heavy wraps and
robes while on the road. From Richmond we hastened away over a fine and
nearly straight road to Ripon, whose chief attraction is its cathedral.
Speaking of cathedrals again, I might remark that our tour took us to
every one of these, with one exception--in England and Scotland, about
thirty in all--and the exception, Beverly Minster, is but newly created
and relatively of lesser importance.

Ripon is one of the smaller cathedrals and of less importance in
historical associations. It occupies a magnificent site, crowning a hill
rising in the very center of the town, and from a distance gives the
impression of being larger than it really is. It presents a somewhat
unfinished aspect with its three low, square-topped towers, once
surmounted by great wooden spires, which became unsafe and were taken
down, never to be replaced. These must have added wonderfully to the
dignity and proper proportion of the church.

Just outside Ripon lies Fountains Abbey, undoubtedly the most striking
and best preserved ecclesiastical ruin in England. It is on the estate
of the Marquis of Ripon, adjoining the town, and this nobleman takes
great pride in the preservation of the abbey. The great park, which also
surrounds his residence, is thrown open every day and one has full
liberty to go about it at pleasure. It is a popular resort, and on the
day of our visit the number of people passing through the gate exceeded
five hundred. The gatekeeper assured us that a thousand visitors on a
single day was not an uncommon occurrence. The abbey stands in a wooded
valley on the margin of a charming little river, and underneath and
around the ruin is a lawn whose green loveliness is such as can be found
in England alone. There is no room in this record for the description of
such a well known place or for its story. The one feature which
impressed us most, and which is one of the finest specimens of Norman
architecture in England, is the great cellarium, where the monks stored
their wine in the good old days. The vaulted roof of this vast
apartment, several hundred feet in length, is in perfect condition and
shows how substantially the structure must have been built Fountains
Abbey shared the fate of its contemporaries at the hand of Henry VIII,
who drove the monks from its shelter, confiscating their property and
revenues. It was growing late when we left Ripon for York, but the road
was perfect and we had no trouble in covering the twenty miles or more
in about an hour. We were soon made comfortable at the Station Hotel in
York, one of the oldest and most interesting of the larger cities.

The following day being Sunday, we availed ourselves of the opportunity
of attending services at the Minster. The splendid music of the great
organ was enough to atone for the long dreary chant of the litany, and
the glory of the ancient windows, breaking the gloom of the church with
a thousand shafts of softened light, was in itself an inspiration more
than any sermon--at least to us, to whom these things had the charm of
the unusual.

York Minster, with the exception of St. Paul's in London, is the largest
cathedral in England and contests with Canterbury for first place in
ecclesiastical importance. Its greatest glory is its windows, which are
by far the finest of any in England. Many of them date back to the
Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries, and when one contemplates their
subdued beauty it is easy to understand why stained-glass making is now
reckoned one of the lost arts. These windows escaped numerous
vicissitudes which imperiled the cathedral, among them the disastrous
fires which nearly destroyed it on two occasions within the last
century. The most remarkable of them all is the "Five Sisters" at the
end of the nave, a group of five slender, softly-toned windows of
imposing height. The numerous monuments scattered throughout the church
are of little interest to the American visitor. We were surprised at the
small audiences which we found at the cathedrals where we attended
services. A mere corner is large enough to care for the congregations,
the vast body of the church being seldom used except on state occasions.
Though York is a city of seventy-five thousand population, I think there
were not more than four or five hundred people in attendance, though the
day was exceptionally fine.

There are numerous places within easy reach of York which one should not
miss. A sixty-mile trip during three or four hours of the afternoon gave
us the opportunity of seeing two abbey ruins, Helmsley Castle and
Laurence Sterne's cottage at Coxwold. Our route led over a series of
steep hills almost due north to Helmsley, a town with unbroken
traditions from the time of the Conqueror. Its ancient castle
surrendered to Fairfax with the agreement that "it be absolutely
demolished and that no garrison hereafter be kept by either party." So
well was this provision carried out that only a ragged fragment remains
of the once impregnable fortress, which has an added interest from its
connection with Scott's story, "The Fortunes of Nigel"

Two miles from Helmsley is Rievaulx Abbey, situated in a deep, secluded
valley, and the narrow byway leading to the ruin was so steep and rough
that we left the car and walked down the hill. A small village nestles
in the valley, a quiet, out-of-the-way little place whose thatched
cottages were surrounded by a riot of old-fashioned flowers and their
walls dashed with the rich color of the bloom-laden rose vines. Back of
the village, in lonely grandeur, stands the abbey, still imposing
despite decay and neglect. Just in front of it is the cottage of the old
custodian, who seemed considerably troubled by our application to visit
the ruins. He said that the place was not open on Sunday and gave us to
understand that he had conscientious scruples against admitting anyone
on that day. The hint of a fee overcame his scruples to such an extent
that he intimated that the gates were not locked anyway and if we
desired to go through them he did not know of anything that would
prevent us. We wandered about in the shadows of the high but crumbling
walls, whose extent gave a strong impression of the original glory of
the place, and one may well believe the statement that, at the time of
the Dissolution, Rievaulx was one of the largest as well as richest of
the English abbeys. The old keeper was awaiting us at the gateway and
his conscientious scruples were again awakened when we asked him for a
few post-card pictures. He amiably intimated his own willingness to
accommodate us, but said he was afraid that the "old woman" (his wife)
wouldn't allow it, but he would find out. He returned after a short
interview in the cottage and said that there were some pictures on a
table in the front room and if we would go in and select what we wanted
and leave the money for them it would be all right.


On our return from Helmsley, we noticed a byway leading across the
moorland with a sign-board pointing the way "to Coxwold." We were
reminded that in this out-of-the-way village Laurence Sterne, "the
father of the English novel," had lived many years and that his cottage
and church might still be seen. A narrow road led sharply from the
beautiful Yorkshire farm lands, through which we had been traveling, its
fields almost ready for the harvest, into a lonely moor almost as brown
and bare as our own western sagebrush country. It was on this
unfrequented road that we encountered the most dangerous hill we passed
over during our trip, and the road descending it was a reminder of some
of the worst in our native country. They called it "the bank," and the
story of its terrors to motorists, told us by a Helmsley villager, was
in no wise an exaggeration. It illustrates the risk often attending a
digression into byroads not listed in the road-book, for England is a
country of many hilly sections. I had read only a few days before of the
wreck of a large car in Derbyshire where the driver lost control of his
machine on a gradient of one in three. The car dashed over the
embankment, demolishing many yards of stone wall and coming to rest in a
valley hundreds of feet beneath. And this was only one of several
similar cases. Fortunately, we had only the descent to make. The bank
dropped off the edge of the moorland into a lovely and fertile valley,
where, quite unexpectedly, we came upon Bylands Abbey, the rival of
Rievaulx, but far more fallen into decay. It stood alone in the midst of
the wide valley; no caretaker hindered our steps to its precincts and no
effort had been made to prop its crumbling walls or to stay the green
ruin creeping over it. The fragment of its great eastern window, still
standing, was its most imposing feature and showed that it had been a
church of no mean architectural pretension. The locality, it would seem,
was well supplied with abbeys, for Rievaulx is less than ten miles away,
but we learned that Bylands was founded by monks from the former
brotherhood and also from Furness Abbey in Lancashire. In the good old
days it seems to have been a common thing when the monks became
dissatisfied with the establishment to which they were attached for the
dissenters to start a rival abbey just over the way.

Coxwold is a sleepy village undisturbed by modern progress, its thatched
cottages straggling up the crooked street that leads to the hilltop,
crowned by the hoary church whose tall, massive octagonal tower
dominates the surrounding country. It seems out of all proportion to the
poverty-stricken, ragged-looking little village on the hillside, but
this is not at all an uncommon impression one will have of the churches
in small English towns. Across the road from the church is the old-time
vicarage, reposing in the shade of towering elms, and we found no
difficulty whatever in gaining admission to "Shandy Hall," as it is now
called. We were shown the little room not more than nine feet square
where Sterne, when vicar, wrote his greatest book, "Tristram Shandy."
The kitchen is still in its original condition, with its rough-beamed
ceiling and huge fireplace. Like most English cottages, the walls were
covered with climbing roses and creepers and there was the usual
flower-garden in the rear. The tenants were evidently used to visitors,
and though they refused any gratuity, our attention was called to a box
near the door which was labeled, "For the benefit of Wesleyan Missions."

Two or three miles through the byways after leaving Coxwold brought us
into the main road leading into York. This seemed such an ideal place
for a police trap that we traveled at a very moderate speed, meeting
numerous motorists on the way. The day had been a magnificent one,
enabling us to see the Yorkshire country at its best. It had been
delightfully cool and clear, and lovelier views than we had seen from
many of the upland roads would be hard to imagine. The fields of yellow
grain, nearly ready for harvesting, richly contrasted with the
prevailing bright green of the hills and valleys. Altogether, it was a
day among a thousand, and in no possible way could one have enjoyed it
so greatly as from the motor car, which dashed along, slowed up, or
stopped altogether, as the varied scenery happened to especially please

York abounds in historic relics, odd corners and interesting places. The
city was surrounded by a strong wall built originally by Edward I, and
one may follow it throughout its entire course of more than two miles.
It is not nearly so complete as the famous Chester wall, but it encloses
a larger area. It shows to even a greater extent the careful work of the
restorer, as do the numerous gate-towers, or "bars," which one meets in
following the wall. The best exterior views of the minster may be had
from vantage points on this wall, and a leisurely tour of its entire
length is well worth while. The best preserved of the gate-towers is
Micklegate Bar, from which, in the War of the Roses, the head of the
Duke of York was exhibited to dismay his adherents. There were
originally forty of these towers, of which several still exist. Aside
from its world-famous minster, York teems with objects and places of
curious and archaeological interest. There are many fine old churches
and much mediaeval architecture. In a public park fragments still remain
of St. Mary's Abbey, a once magnificent establishment, destroyed during
the Parliamentary wars; but it must be said to the everlasting credit of
the Parliamentarians that their commanders spared no effort to protect
the minster, which accounts largely for its excellent preservation. The
Commander-in-Chief, General Fairfax, was a native of Yorkshire and no
doubt had a kindly feeling for the great cathedral, which led him to
exert his influence against its spoliation. Such buildings can stand
several fires without much damage, since there is little to burn except
the roof, and the cathedrals suffered most severely at the hands of the
various contending factions into which they fell during the civil wars.

The quaintest of old-time York streets is The Shambles, a narrow lane
paved with cobblestones and only wide enough to permit the passing of
one vehicle at a time. It is lined on either side with queer,
half-timbered houses, and in one or two places these have sagged to such
an extent that their tops are not more than two or three feet apart. In
fact it is said that neighbors in two adjoining buildings may shake
hands across the street. The Shambles no doubt took its name from the
unattractive row of butcher shops which still occupy most of the small
store-rooms on either side. Hardly less picturesque than The Shambles is
the Petergate, and no more typical bits of old-time England may be found
anywhere than these two ancient lanes. Glimpses of the cathedral towers
through the rows of odd buildings is a favorite theme with the artists.
Aside from its antiquity, its old-world streets and historic buildings
are quite up to the best of the English cities. It is an important
trading and manufacturing point, though the prophecy of the old saw,

    "Lincoln was, London is, York shall be.
    The greatest city of the three,"

seems hardly likely to be realized.



Late in the afternoon we left York over the Great North Road for
Retford, from whence we expected to make the "Dukeries" circuit. The
road runs through a beautiful section and passes many of the finest of
the English country estates. It leads through Doncaster, noted for its
magnificent church, and Bawtry, from whence came many of the Pilgrim
Fathers who sailed in the Mayflower. This road is almost level
throughout, and although it rained continuously, the run of fifty miles
was made in record time--that is, as we reckoned record time.

At Retford we were comfortably housed at the White Hart Hotel, a well
conducted hostelry for a town of ten thousand. The "White Hart" must be
a favorite among English innkeepers, for I recollect that we stopped at
no fewer than seven hotels bearing this name during our tour and saw the
familiar sign on many others. On our arrival we learned that the
Dukeries trip must be made by carriage and that the fifty miles would
consume two days. We felt averse to subtracting so much from our already
short remaining time, and when we found still further that admission
was denied for the time at two of the most important estates, we decided
to proceed without delay. The motor would be of no advantage to us in
visiting the Dukeries, for the circuit must be made in a staid and
leisurely English victoria.

Since this chronicle was written, however, I have learned that the
embargo on motoring through the Dukeries is at least partially
raised--another step showing the trend in England in favor of the motor
car. By prearrangement with the stewards of the various estates,
permission may be obtained to take a car through the main private roads.
Thus the tourist will be enabled in half a day to accomplish what has
previously required at least two days driving with horse and carriage.

In this vicinity is Newstead Abbey, the ancestral home of Byron, and one
of our greatest disappointments was our inability to gain access to it.
Perhaps we might have done so if we had made arrangements sufficiently
in advance, since visitors are admitted, they told us, on certain days
by special permission. There has, however, been an increasing tendency
on the part of the owner to greatly limit the number of visitors. The
coal mines discovered on the lands have become a great source of wealth
and the abbey has been transformed into a modern palace in one of the
finest private parks in England. The rooms occupied by Byron, it is
said, are kept exactly as they were when he finally left Newstead and
there are many interesting relics of the poet carefully preserved by the
present proprietor.

It would be a bad thing for England if the tendency on the part of
private owners of historic places, to exclude visitors from their
premises, should become general. The disposition seems somewhat on the
increase, and not without cause. Indeed, I was told that in a number of
instances the privileges given had been greatly abused; that gardens had
been stripped of their flowers and relics of various kinds carried away.
This vandalism was not often charged against Americans, but rather
against local English "trippers," as they are called--people who go to
these places merely for a picnic or holiday. No doubt this could be
overcome--it has been overcome in a number of instances, notably Warwick
Castle and Knole House--by the charge of a moderate admission fee.
People who are willing to pay are not generally of the class who commit
acts of vandalism. That this practice is not adopted to a greater extent
is doubtless due to the fact that numbers of aristocratic owners think
there is something degrading in the appearance of making a commercial
enterprise out of the historic places which they possess.

It is only twenty miles from Retford to Lincoln, and long before we
reached the latter town we saw the towers of its great cathedral, which
crowns a steep hill rising sharply from the almost level surrounding
country. It is not strange that the cathedral-builders, always with an
eye to the spectacular and imposing, should have fixed on this
remarkable hill as a site for one of their churches. For miles from
every direction the three massive towers form a landmark as they rise
above the tile roofs of the town in sharp outline against the sky. To
reach Lincoln we followed a broad, beautiful highway, almost level until
it comes to the town, when it abruptly ascends the hill, which is so
steep as to tax the average motor. The cathedral in some respects is the
most remarkable and imposing in England. The distinctive feature is the
great towers of equal size and height, something similar to those of
Durham, though higher and more beautifully proportioned. The interior
shows some of the finest Norman architecture in the Kingdom and the
great Norman doorway is said to be the most perfect of its kind. Near
the chapel in the cathedral close is a bronze statue of Tennyson
accompanied by his favorite dog. This reminded us that we were in the
vicinity of the poet's birthplace, and we determined that the next point
in our pilgrimage should be Somersby, where the church and rectory of
Tennyson's father still stand.

We planned to reach Boston that evening, and as there were a good many
miles before us we were not able to give the time that really should be
spent in Lincoln. It has many ancient landmarks, the most remarkable
being a section of the Roman wall that surrounded the town about 15 A.D.
and in which the arch of one of the gateways is still entire. It now
appears to have been a very low gateway, but we were informed that
excavations had shown that in the many centuries since it was built the
earth had risen no less than eight feet in the archway and along the
wall. Lincoln Castle, much decayed and ruinous, is an appropriate
feature of one of the public parks. Along the streets leading up
Cathedral Hill are rows of quaint houses, no doubt full of interest; but
a motor tour often does not permit one to go much into detail.

So we bade farewell to Lincoln, only stopping to ask the hostler for
directions to the next town on our way. Generally such directions are
something like this: "Turn to the right around the next corner, pass two
streets, then turn to the left, then turn to the right again and keep
right along until you come to the town hall"--clock tower, or something
of the kind--"and then straight away." After you inquire two or three
more times and finally come to the landmark, you find three or four
streets, any one of which seems quite as "straight away" as the others,
and a consultation with a nearby policeman is necessary, after all, to
make sure you are right. When once well into the country, the
milestones, together with the finger-boards at nearly every parting of
the ways, can be depended on to keep you right. These conveniences,
however, are by no means evenly distributed and in some sections a
careful study of the map and road-book is necessary to keep from going


The twenty miles to Somersby went by without special incident. This
quaint little hamlet--it can hardly be called a village--is almost
hidden among the hills, well off the main-traveled roads and railway. We
dashed through the narrow lanes, shaded in many places by great
over-arching trees and the road finally led across the clear little
brook made famous by Tennyson's verse. After crossing the bridge we were
in Somersby--if such an expression is allowable. Nothing is there except
the rectory, the church just across the way, the grange, and half a
dozen thatched cottages. A discouraging notice in front of the Tennyson
house stated positively that the place would not be shown under any
conditions except on a certain hour of a certain day of the week--which
was by no means the day nor the hour of our arrival. A party of English
teachers came toward us, having just met with a refusal, but one of them
said that Americans might have an exception made in their favor. Anyway,
it was worth trying.

Our efforts proved successful and a neat, courteous young woman showed
us over the rambling house. It is quite large--and had to be, in fact,
to accommodate the rector's family of no fewer than twelve children, of
whom the poet was the fourth. The oddest feature is the large dining
room, which has an arched roof and narrow, stained-glass windows, and
the ceiling is broken by several black-oak arches. At the base of each
of these is a queer little face carved in stone and the mantel is
curiously carved in black oak--all of this being the work of the elder
Tennyson himself. There is some dispute as to the poet's birthroom. Our
fair guide showed us all the rooms and said we might take our choice. We
liked the one which opened on the old-fashioned garden at the rear of
the house, for as is often the case in England, the garden side was more
attractive than the front. Just across the road stands the tiny church
of which the Rev. Tennyson was rector for many years. This was one of
the very smallest that we visited and would hardly seat more than fifty
people altogether. It is several hundred years old, and in the
churchyard is a tall, Norman cross, as old as the church itself.

[Illustration: SOMERSBY CHURCH.]

A rare thing it is to find the burying-ground around a church in England
quite neglected, but the one at Somersby is the exception to the rule.
The graves of the poet's father and brother were overgrown with grass
and showed evidences of long neglect. We expressed surprise at this, and
the old woman who kept the key to the church replied with some
bitterness that the Tennysons "were ashamed to own Somersby since they
had become great folks." Anyway, it seems that the poet never visited
the place after the family left in 1837. Near the church door was a box
with a notice stating that the congregation was small and the people
poor, and asking for contributions to be used in keeping the church in
repair. The grange, near the rectory, is occupied by the squire who owns
the birthplace, it is a weatherbeaten building of brick and gray stone
and perhaps the "gray old grange" referred to in "In Memoriam."
Altogether, Somersby is one of the quietest and most charming of places.
Aside from its connection with the great poet, it would be well worthy
of a visit as a bit of rural England. Scattered about are several great
English elms, which were no doubt large trees during the poet's boyhood,
a hundred years ago.

For a long distance our road from Somersby to Boston ran on the crest of
a hill, from which we had a far-reaching view over the lovely
Lincolnshire country. Shortly after, we left the hills and found
ourselves again in the fen country. Many miles before we reached Boston
we saw the great tower of St. Botolph's Church, in some respects the
most remarkable in England. They give it the inartistic and
inappropriate appellation of "The Stump," due to the fact that it rises
throughout its height of more than three hundred feet without much
diminution in size. So greatly does this tower dominate the
old-fashioned city that one is in danger of forgetting that there is
anything else in Boston, and though it is a place little frequented by
Americans, there are few quainter towns in England. Several hundred
years ago it was one of the important seaports, but it lost its position
because the river on which it is situated is navigable only by small
vessels at high tide.

Boston is of especial interest to Americans on account of its great
namesake in this country and because it was the point from which the
Pilgrim Fathers made their first attempt to reach America. Owing to
pestilence and shipwreck, they were compelled to return, and later they
sailed in the Mayflower on a more successful voyage from Plymouth. We
can get a pretty good idea of the reasons which led the Pilgrim Fathers
to brave everything to get away from their home land. One may still see
in the old town hall of Boston the small, windowless stone cells where
the Fathers were confined during the period of persecution against the
Puritans. Evidently they did not lay their sufferings against the town
itself, or they would hardly have given the name to the one they
founded in the New World. Boston is full of ancient structures, among
them Shodfriars Hall, one of the most elaborate half-timbered buildings
in the Kingdom. The hotels are quite in keeping with the dilapidation
and unprogressiveness of the town and there is no temptation to linger
longer than necessary to get an idea of the old Boston and its

The country through which we traveled next day is level and apparently
productive fanning land. The season had been unusually dry and favorable
to the fen land, as this section is called. The whole country between
Boston and Norwich has scarcely a hill and the numerous drains showed
that it is really a reclaimed marsh. In this section English farming
appeared at its best. The crops raised in England and Scotland consist
principally of wheat, oats and various kinds of grasses. Our Indian corn
will not ripen and all I saw of it was a few little garden patches. The
fen country faintly reminds one of Holland, lying low and dotted here
and there with huge windmills. As a matter of curiosity, we visited one
of the latter. The miller was a woman, and with characteristic English
courtesy she made us acquainted with the mysteries of the ancient mill,
which was used for grinding Indian corn for cattle-feed.

Our route for the day was a circuitous one, as there were numerous
points that we wished to visit before coming to Norwich for the night.
A broad, level road leads from Boston to King's Lynn, a place of
considerable size. Its beginning is lost in antiquity, and a recent
French writer has undertaken to prove that the first settlement of
civilized man in Britain was made at this point. We entered the town
through one of the gateways, which has no doubt been obstructing the
main highway for several hundred years. It is a common thing in the
English towns to find on the main street one of the old gates, the
opening through which will admit but one vehicle at a time, often making
it necessary to station a policeman on each side to see that there are
no collisions. But the gateways have been standing for ages and it would
be sacrilege to think of tearing them down to facilitate traffic. Just
outside King's Lynn we passed Sandringham Palace, a spacious modern
country house and one of the favorite homes of the Royal Family.


A few hours through winding byways brought us to the village of Burnham
Thorpe, the birthplace of Admiral Nelson. It is a tiny hamlet, whose
mean-looking, straggling cottages with red tiles lack the artistic
beauty of the average English village--the picturesque, thatched roofs
and brilliant flower gardens were entirely wanting. The admiral was the
son of the village rector, but the parsonage in which he was born was
pulled down many years ago. Still standing, and kept in good repair,
is the church where his father preached. The lectern, as the
pulpit-stand in English churches is called, was fashioned of oak taken
from Nelson's flagship, the Victory. The father is buried in the
churchyard and a memorial to Nelson has been erected in the church. The
tomb of the admiral is in St. Paul's Cathedral in London.

From Burnham Thorpe on the way to Norwich are the scant ruins of the
priory of Walsingham. In its palmy days this was one of the richest in
the world, and it is said that it was visited by more pilgrims than was
the shrine of Becket at Canterbury. In every instance a gift was
expected from the visitor, and as a consequence the monks fared
sumptuously. Among these pilgrims were many of the nobility and even
kings, including Henry VIII, who, after visiting the priory as a votary
in the early part of his reign, ordered its complete destruction in
1539. This order was evidently carried out, for only shattered fragments
of the ruins remain to show how splendid the buildings must once have

Walsingham is an unusually quaint little village, with a wonderful,
ancient town pump of prodigious height and a curious church with a tall
spire bent several degrees from the perpendicular. Near the priory are
two springs, styled Wishing Wells, which were believed to have
miraculous power, the legend being that they sprang into existence at
the command of the Virgin. This illustrates one of the queer and not
unpleasing features of motoring in England. In almost every
out-of-the-way village, no matter how remote or small and how seldom
visited by tourists, one runs across no end of quaint landmarks and
historic spots with accompanying incidents and legends. Twenty miles
more through a beautiful country brought us in sight of the cathedral
spire of Norwich. This city has a population of about one hundred and
twenty thousand and there is a unique charm in its blending of the
mediaeval and modern. It is a progressive city with large business and
manufacturing interests, but these have not swept away the charm of the
old-time town. The cathedral is one of the most imposing in England,
being mainly of Norman architecture and surmounted by a graceful spire
more than three hundred feet in height. Norwich also presents the
spectacle of a modern cathedral in course of building, a thing that we
did not see elsewhere in England. The Roman Catholic Church is
especially strong in this section, and under the leadership of the Duke
of Norfolk has undertaken to build a structure that will rival in size
and splendor those of the olden time. No doubt the modern Catholics bear
in mind that their ancestors built all the great English churches and
cathedrals and that these were lost to them at the time of the
so-called Reformation of Henry VIII. Religious toleration does not
prevail to any such extent in England as in the United States and there
is considerable bitterness between the various sects.

Speaking of new cathedrals, while several are being built by the Roman
Catholics, only one is under construction by the Church of England--the
first since the days of the Stuarts. This is at Liverpool and the
foundations have barely been begun. The design for the cathedral was a
competitive one selected from many submitted by the greatest architects
in the world. The award was made to Gilbert Scott, a young man of only
twenty-one and a grandson of the famous architect of the same name who
had so much to do with the restoration of several of the cathedrals. The
Liverpool church is to be the greatest in the Kingdom, even exceeding
York Minster and St. Paul's in size. No attempt is made to fix the time
when the building will be completed, but the work will undoubtedly
occupy several generations.

In Norwich we stopped at the Maid's Head Hotel, one of the noted
old-time English hostelries. It has been in business as a hotel nearly
five hundred years and Queen Elizabeth was its guest while on one of her
visits to the city of Norwich. Despite its antiquity, it is thoroughly
up-to-date and was one of the most comfortable inns that we found
anywhere. No doubt this is considerably due to a large modern addition,
which has been built along the same lines as the older portion. Near the
cathedral are other ancient structures among which are the two gateways,
whose ruins still faintly indicate their pristine splendor of carving
and intricate design. The castle, at one time a formidable fortress, has
almost disappeared. "Tombland" and "Strangers' Hall" are the
appellations of two of the finest half-timbered buildings that we saw.
The newer portions of Norwich indicate a prosperous business town and it
is supplied with an unusually good street-car system. Most of the larger
English cities are badly off in this particular. York, for instance, a
place of seventy-five thousand, has but one street-car line, three or
four miles in length, on which antiquated horse-cars are run at
irregular intervals.



The hundred miles of road that we followed from Norwich to Peterborough
has hardly the suggestion of a hill, though some of it is not up to the
usual English standard. We paused midway at Dereham, whose remarkable
old church is the only one we saw in England that had the bell-tower
built separate from the main structure, though this same plan is
followed in Chichester Cathedral. In Dereham Church is the grave of
Cowper, who spent his last years in the town. The entire end of the nave
is occupied by an elaborate memorial window of stained glass, depicting
scenes and incidents of the poet's life and works. To the rear of the
church is the open tomb of one of the Saxon princesses, and near it is a
tablet reciting how this grave had been desecrated by the monks of Ely,
who stole the relics and conveyed them to Ely Cathedral. Numerous
miracles were claimed to have been wrought by the relics of the
princess, who was famed for her piety. The supposed value of these
relics was the cause of the night raid on the tomb--a practice not
uncommon in the days of monkish supremacy. The bones of saint or martyr
had to be guarded with pious care or they were likely to be stolen by
the enterprising churchmen of some rival establishment. Shortly
afterwards, it would transpire that miracles were being successfully
performed by the relics in the hands of the new possessors.

Leaving the main road a detour of a few miles enabled us to visit
Crowland Abbey shortly before reaching Peterborough. It is a remarkable
ruin, rising out of the flat fen country, as someone has said, "like a
light-house out of the sea." Its oddly shaped tower is visible for
miles, and one wide arch of the nave still stands, so light and airy in
its gracefulness that it seems hardly possible it is built of heavy
blocks of stone. A portion of the church has been restored and is used
for services, but a vast deal of work was necessary to arrest the
settling of the heavy walls on their insecure foundations. The cost of
the restoration must have been very great, and the people of Crowland
must have something of the spirit of the old abbey builders themselves,
to have financed and carried out such a work. Visitors to the church are
given an opportunity to contribute to the fund--a common thing in such
cases. Crowland is a gray, lonely little town in the midst of the wide
fen country. The streets were literally thronged with children of all
ages; no sign of race suicide in this bit of Lincolnshire. Everywhere
is evidence of antiquity--there is much far older than the old abbey in
Crowland. The most notable of all is the queer three-way arched stone
bridge in the center of the village--a remarkable relic of Saxon times.
It seems sturdy and solid despite the thousand or more years that have
passed over it, and is justly counted one of the most curious antiques
in the Kingdom.

It was late when we left Crowland, and before we had replaced a tire
casing that, as usual, collapsed at an inopportune moment, the long
English twilight had come to an end. The road to Peterborough, however,
is level and straight as an arrow. The right of way was clear and all
conditions gave our car opportunity to do its utmost. It was about ten
o'clock when we reached the excellent station hotel in Peterborough.

Before the advent of the railroad, Peterborough, like Wells, was merely
an ecclesiastical town, with little excuse for existence save its
cathedral. In the last fifty years, however, the population has
increased five-fold and it has become quite on important trading and
manufacturing center. It is situated in the midst of the richest farm
country in England and its annual wool and cattle markets are known
throughout the Kingdom. The town dates from the year 870, when the first
cathedral minster was built by the order of one of the British
chieftains. The present magnificent structure was completed in 1237,
and so far as appearance is concerned, now stands almost as it left the
builder's hands. It is without tower or spire of considerable height and
somewhat disappointing when viewed from the exterior. The interior is
most imposing and the great church is rich in historical associations.
Here is buried Catherine of Aragon, the first queen of Henry VIII, and
the body of the unfortunate Queen of Scots was brought here after her
execution at Fotheringhay. King James I, when he came to the throne,
removed his mother's remains to Westminster Abbey, where they now rest.

Strangely enough, the builders of the cathedral did not take into
consideration the yielding nature of the soil on which they reared the
vast structure, and as a consequence, a few years ago the central tower
of the building began to give way and cracks appeared in the vaulting
and walls. Something had to be done at once, and at the cost of more
than half a million dollars the tower was taken down from top to
foundation, every stone being carefully marked to indicate its exact
place in the walls. The foundations were carried eleven feet deeper,
until they rested upon solid rock, and then each stone was replaced in
its original position. Restoration is so perfect that the ordinary
beholder would never know the tower had been touched. This incident
gives an idea of how the cathedrals are now cared for and at what cost
they are restored after ages of neglect and destruction.

[Illustration: A TYPICAL BYWAY.]

Peterborough was stripped of most of its images and carvings by
Cromwell's soldiers and its windows are modern and inferior. Our
attention was attracted to three or four windows that looked much like
the crazy-quilt work that used to be in fashion. We were informed that
these were made of fragments of glass that had been discovered and
patched together without any effort at design, merely to preserve them
and to show the rich tones and colorings of the original windows. The
most individual feature of Peterborough is the three great arches on the
west, or entrance, front. These rise nearly two-thirds the height of the
frontage and it is almost a hundred feet from the ground to the top of
the pointed arches. The market square of Peterborough was one of the
largest we had seen--another evidence of the agricultural importance of
the town. Aside from the cathedral there is not much of interest, but if
one could linger there is much worth seeing in the surrounding country.

The village of Fotheringhay is only nine miles to the west. The
melancholy connection of this little hamlet with the Queen of Scots
brings many visitors to it every year, although there are few relics of
Mary and her lengthy imprisonment now remaining. Here we came the next
morning after a short time on winding and rather hilly byways. It is an
unimportant looking place, this sleepy little village where three
hundred years ago Mary fell a victim to the machinations of her rival,
Elizabeth. The most notable building now standing is the quaint inn
where the judges of the unfortunate queen made their headquarters during
her farcial trial. Of the gloomy castle, where the fair prisoner
languished for nineteen long years, nothing remains except a shapeless
mass of grass covered stone and traces of the old-time moat. Much of the
stone was built into cottages of the surrounding country and in some of
the mansions of the neighborhood may be found portions of the windows
and a few of the ancient mantel pieces. The great oak staircase which
Mary descended on the day of her execution, is built into an old inn at
Oundle, not far away. Thus the great fortress was scattered to the four
winds, but there is something more enduring than stone and mortar,--its
memories linger and will remain so long as the story of English history
is told. King James, by the destruction of the castle, endeavored to
show fitting respect to the memory of his mother and no doubt hoped to
wipe out the recollection of his friendly relations with Queen Elizabeth
after she had caused the death of Mary.

The school children of Fotheringhay seemed quite familiar with its
history and on the lookout for strangers who came to the place. Two or
three of them quickly volunteered to conduct us to the site of the
castle. There was nothing to see after we got there, but our small
guides were thankful for the fee, which they no doubt had in mind from
the first. Mournful and desolate indeed seemed the straggling little
village where three centuries ago "a thousand witcheries lay felled at
one stroke," one of the cruelest and most pitiful of the numberless
tragedies which disfigure the history of England.

From Fotheringhay we returned to the York road and followed it northward
for about twenty miles. We passed through Woolsthorpe, an unattractive
little town whose distinction is that it was the birthplace of Sir Isaac
Newton. The thatched roof farmhouse where he was born is still standing
on the outskirts of the village. At Grantham, a little farther on, we
stopped for lunch at the "Royal and Angel" Hotel, one of the most
charming of the old-time inns. Like nearly all of these old hostelries,
it has its tradition of a royal guest, having offered shelter to King
Charles I when on his endless wanderings during the Parliamentary wars.
It is a delightful old building, overgrown with ivy, and its
diamond-paned lattice windows, set in walls of time-worn stone, give
evidence to its claims to antiquity.

We had paused in Grantham on our way to Belvoir Castle, about six miles
away, the seat of the Duke of Rutland. This is one of the finest as well
as most strikingly situated of the great baronial residences in England.
Standing on a gently rising hill, its many towers and battlements
looking over the forests surrounding it, this vast pile more nearly
fulfilled our ideas of feudal magnificence than any other we saw. It is
famous for its picture gallery, which contains many priceless originals
by Gainsborough, Reynolds and others. It has always been open to
visitors every week-day, but it chanced at the time that the old duke
was dangerously ill--so ill, in fact, that his death occurred a little
later on--and visitors were not admitted. We were able to take the car
through the great park, which affords a splendid view of the exterior of
the castle.

Near by is the village of Bottisford, whose remarkable church has been
the burial place of the Manners family for five hundred years and
contains some of the most complete monumental effigies in England. These
escaped the wrath of the Cromwellians, for the Earl of Manners was an
adherent of the Protector. In the market square at Bottisford stand the
old whipping-post and stocks, curious relics of the days when these
instruments were a common means of satisfying justice--or what was then
considered justice. They were made of solid oak timbers and had
withstood the sun and rain of two or three hundred years without
showing much sign of decay. Although the whipping-post and stocks used
to be common things in English towns, we saw them preserved only at

On leaving Bottisford, our car dashed through the clear waters of a
little river which runs through the town and which no doubt gave it the
name. We found several instances where no attempt had been made to
bridge the streams, which were still forded as in primitive times. In a
short time we reached Newark, where we planned to stop for the
night--but it turned out otherwise. We paused at the hotel which the
guide-book honored with the distinction of being the best in the town
and a courteous policeman of whom we inquired confirmed the statement.
We were offered our choice of several dingy rooms, but a glance at the
time-worn furnishings and unattractive beds convinced us that if this
were Newark's best hotel we did not care to spend the night in Newark.
To the profound disgust of the landlady--nearly all hotels in England
are managed by women--we took our car from the garage and sought more
congenial quarters, leaving, I fear, anything but a pleasant impression
behind us. We paused a few minutes at the castle, which is the principal
object of antiquity in Newark. It often figured in early history; King
John died here--the best thing he ever did--and it sustained many
sieges until it was finally destroyed by the Parliamentarians--pretty
effectively destroyed, for there is little remaining except the walls
fronting immediately on the river.

Though it was quite late, we decided to go on to Nottingham, about
twenty miles farther, where we could be sure of good accommodation. It
seemed easy to reach the city before dark, but one can hardly travel on
schedule with a motor car--at least so long as pneumatic tires are used.
An obstinate case of tire trouble just as we got outside of Newark meant
a delay of an hour or more, and it was after sunset before we were again
started on our journey. There is a cathedral at Southwell, and as we
permitted no cathedral to escape us, we paused there for a short time.
It is a great country church of very unusual architecture, elevated to
the head of a diocese in 1888. The town of Southwell is a retired place
of evident antiquity and will be remembered as having been the home of
Lord Byron and his mother for some time during his youth. The route
which we followed to Nottingham was well off the main highway--a
succession of sharp turns and steep little hills that made us take
rather long chances in our flight around some of the corners. But,
luckily, the way was clear and we came into Nottingham without mishap,
though it became so dark that we were forced to light our lamps--a
thing that was necessary only two or three times during our summer's

Our route south from Nottingham was over a splendid and nearly level
road that passes through Leicester, one of the most up-to-date business
towns in the Kingdom. I do not remember any place outside of London
where streets were more congested with all kinds of traffic. The town is
of great antiquity, but its landmarks have been largely wiped out by the
modern progress it has made. We did not pause here, but directed our way
to Lutterworth, a few miles farther, where the great reformer, John
Wyclif, made his home, the famous theologian who translated the bible
into English and printed it two hundred years before the time of Martin
Luther. This act, together with his fearless preaching, brought him into
great disfavor with the church, but owing to the protection of Edward
III, who was especially friendly to him, he was able to complete his
work in spite of fierce opposition. Strangely enough, considering the
spirit of his time, Wyclif withstood the efforts of his enemies, lived
to a good old age, and died a natural death. Twenty years afterward the
Roman Church again came into power and the remains of the reformer were
exhumed and burned in the public square of Lutterworth. To still further
cover his memory with obloquy, the ashes were thrown into the clear,
still, little river that we crossed on leaving the town. But his
enemies found it too late to overthrow the work he had begun. His
church, a large, massive building with a great, square-topped tower,
stands today much as it did when he used to occupy the pulpit, which is
the identical one from which he preached. A bas-relief in white marble
by the American sculptor, Story, commemorating the work of Wyclif, has
been placed in the church at a cost of more than ten thousand dollars,
and just outside a tall granite obelisk has been erected in his honor.
In cleaning the walls recently, it was discovered that under several
coats of paint there were some remarkable frescoes which, being slowly
uncovered, were found to represent scenes in the life of the great
preacher himself.

Leaving Lutterworth, we planned to reach Cambridge for the night. On the
way we passed through Northampton, a city of one hundred thousand and a
manufacturing place of importance. It is known in history as having been
the seat of Parliament in the earlier days. A detour of a few miles from
the main road leaving Northampton brought us to Olney, which for twenty
years was the home of William Cowper. His house is still standing and
has been turned into a museum of relics of the poet, such as rare
editions of his books and original manuscripts. The town is a quiet,
sleepy-looking place, situated among the Buckinghamshire hills. It is
still known as a literary center and a number of more or less noted
English authors live there at the present time.


Bedford, only a few miles farther on the Cambridge road, was one of the
best-appearing English towns of the size we had seen anywhere--with
handsome residences and fine business buildings. It is more on the plan
of American towns, for its buildings are not ranged along a single
street as is the rule in England. It is best known from its connection
with the immortal dreamer, John Bunyan, whose memory it now delights to
honor. Far different was it in his lifetime, for he was confined for
many years in Bedford Jail and it was during this imprisonment that he
wrote his "Pilgrim's Progress." At Elstow, a mile from Bedford, we saw
his cottage, a mean-looking little hut with only two rooms. The tenants
were glad to admit visitors as probable customers for postcards and
photographs. The bare monotony of the place was relieved not a little by
the flowers which crowded closely around it.

Cambridge is about twenty miles from Bedford, and we did not reach it
until after dark. It was Week-End holiday, and we found the main street
packed with pedestrians, through whom we had to carefully thread our way
for a considerable distance before we came to the University Arms. We
found this hotel one of the most comfortable and best kept of those
whose hospitality we enjoyed during our tour.

Cambridge is distinctly a university town. One who has visited Oxford
and gone the rounds will hardly care to make a like tour of Cambridge
unless he is especially interested in English college affairs. It does
not equal Oxford, either in importance of colleges or number of
students. It is a beautiful place, lying on a river with long stretches
of still water where the students practice rowing and where the famous
boat races are held.

Cambridge is rich in traditions, as any university might be that
numbered Oliver Cromwell among its students. Its present atmosphere and
influences, as well as those of Oxford, are vastly different from those
of the average American school of similar rank; nor do I think that the
practical results attained are comparable to those of our own colleges.
The Rhodes scholarship, so eagerly sought after in America, is not, in
my estimation, of the value that many are inclined to put upon it. Aside
from the fact that caste relegates the winners almost to the level of
charity students--and they told us in Oxford that this is literally
true--it seems to me that the most serious result may be that the
student is likely to get out of touch with American institutions and
American ways of doing things.



A distinguished observer, Prof. Goldwin Smith, expressed it forcibly
when he said that the epitaph of nearly every ruined castle in Britain
might be written, "Destroyed by Cromwell." It takes a tour such as ours
to gain something of a correct conception of the gigantic figure of
Oliver Cromwell in English history. The magnitude and the far-reaching
results of his work are coming to be more and more appreciated by the
English people. For a time he was considered a traitor and regicide, but
with increasing enlightenment and toleration, his real work for human
liberty is being recognized by the great majority of his countrymen. It
was only as far back as 1890 that Parliament voted down a proposition to
place a statue of Cromwell on the grounds of the House of Commons; but
two years later sentiment had advanced so much that justice was done to
the memory of the great Protector and a colossal bronze figure was
authorized and erected. I know of no more impressive sight in all
England than this great statue, standing in solitary grandeur near the
Houses of Parliament, representing Cromwell with sword and bible, and
with an enormous lion crouching at his feet. It divides honor with no
other monument in its vicinity and it seems to stand as a warning to
kingcraft that it must observe well defined limitations if it continues
in Britain. I saw several other statues of Cromwell, notably at
Manchester, Warrington and at St. Ives.

An incident illustrating the sentiment with which the Protector is now
regarded by the common people came under my own observation. With a
number of other sightseers, we were visiting Warwick Castle and were
being shown some of the portraits and relics relating to Cromwell, when
the question was raised by someone in the party as to his position in
English history. A young fellow, apparently an aspirant for church
honors, expressed the opinion that Cromwell was a traitor and the
murderer of his king. He was promptly taken to task by the old soldier
who was acting as our guide through the castle. He said, "Sir, I can not
agree with you. I think we are all better off today that there was such
a man as Cromwell."

That appears to be the general sentiment of the people of Great Britain,
and the feeling is rapidly growing that he was distinctly the defender
of the people's rights. True, he destroyed many of the historic castles,
but such destruction was a military necessity. These fortresses, almost
without exception, were held by supporters of King Charles, who used
them as bases of operation against the Parliamentary Army. If not
destroyed when captured, they were re-occupied by the Royalists and the
work had to be done over again. Therefore Cromwell wisely dismantled the
strongholds when they came into his possession, and generally he did his
work so well that restoration was not possible, even after the Royalists
regained power. The few splendid examples which escaped his
wrath--notably Warwick Castle--fortunately happened at the time to be in
possession of adherents of Parliament. The damage Cromwell inflicted
upon the churches was usually limited to destruction of stone images,
tombs and altars, as savoring of idolatry. This spirit even extended to
the destruction of priceless stained-glass windows, the loss of which we
can not too greatly deplore, especially since the very art of making
this beautiful glass seems to be a lost one.

At Cambridge we were within easy reach of the scenes of the Protector's
early life. He was born in 1599 at Huntingdon, sixteen miles distant,
and was twenty years a citizen of St. Ives, only a few miles away. He
was a student at Cambridge and for several years was a farmer near Ely,
being a tenant on the cathedral lands. As Ely is only fifteen miles
north of Cambridge, it occurred to us to attend services at the
cathedral there on Sunday morning. We followed a splendid road leading
through a beautiful country, rich with fields of grain almost ready for

The cathedral is one of the largest and most remarkable in England,
being altogether different in architecture from any other in the
Kingdom. Instead of a spire, it has a huge, castellated, octagonal
tower, and while it was several hundred years in building, a harmonious
design was maintained throughout, although it exhibits in some degree
almost every style of church architecture known in England. Ely is an
inconsequential town of about seven thousand inhabitants and dominated
from every point of view by the huge bulk of the cathedral. Only a
portion of the space inside the vast building was occupied by seats, and
though the great church would hold many thousands of people if filled to
its capacity, the congregation was below the average that might be found
in the leading churches of an American town the size of Ely. One of the
cathedral officials with whom I had a short talk said that the
congregations averaged small indeed and were growing smaller right
along. The outlook for Ely he did not consider good, a movement being on
foot to cut another diocese from the territory and to make a cathedral,
probably of the great church, at Bury St. Edmunds. In recent years this
policy of creating new dioceses has been in considerable vogue in
England, and of course is distasteful to the sections immediately
affected. The services in Ely Cathedral were simpler than usual and were
through well before noon.

Before returning to Cambridge we visited St. Ives and Huntingdon, both
of which were closely associated with the life of Cromwell. The former
is a place of considerable antiquity, although the present town may be
said to date from 1689, at which time it was rebuilt after being totally
destroyed by fire. One building escaped, a quaint stone structure
erected in the center of the stone bridge crossing the River Ouse and
supposed to have been used as a chapel by the early monks. Cromwell's
connection with St. Ives began in 1628, after he had been elected to
Parliament. He moved here after the dissolution of that body and spent
several years as a farmer. The house which he occupied has disappeared
and few relics remain of his residence in the town. In the market square
is a bronze statue of the Protector, with an inscription to the effect
that he was a citizen of St. Ives for several years. A few miles farther
on is Huntingdon, his birthplace. It is a considerably larger town, but
none of the buildings now standing has any connection with the life of
the Protector. Doubtless the citizens of Huntingdon now recognize that
the manor house where Cromwell was born, which was pulled down a
hundred years ago, would be a valuable asset to the town were it still

From Huntingdon we returned to Cambridge, having completed a circular
tour of about sixty miles. We still had plenty of time to drive about
Cambridge and to view from the outside the colleges and other places of
interest. The streets are laid out in an irregular manner, and although
it is not a large city--only forty thousand--we had considerable
difficulty in finding our way back to the hotel. The University Arms is
situated on the edge of a large common called "The Field." Here in the
evening were several open-air religious services. One of these was
conducted by the Wesleyans, or Methodists, with a large crowd at the
beginning, but a Salvation Army, with several band instruments, soon
attracted the greater portion of the crowd. We found these open-air
services held in many towns through England and Scotland. They were
always conducted by "dissenting churches"--the Church of England would
consider such a proceeding as too undignified.

We wished to get an early start from Cambridge next morning, hoping to
reach London that night, and accordingly made arrangements with the head
waiter for an early breakfast. We told him we should probably want it at
7:30, and he looked at us in an incredulous manner. I repeated the
hour, thinking he did not understand, but he said he thought at first
we were surely joking. However, he would endeavor to accommodate us. If
we would leave our order that evening he thought he could arrange it at
the time desired, but we could easily see that it was going to upset the
traditions of the staid hotel, for the breakfast hour is never earlier
than nine o'clock. However, we had breakfast at 7:30 and found one other
guest in the room--undoubtedly an American. He requested a newspaper and
was informed that the morning papers were not received at the hotel
until half past ten o'clock, although Cambridge is just fifty miles from
London, or about an hour by train. The curiosity which the average
American manifests to know what happened on the day previous is almost
wanting in the staid and less excitable Britisher.

We were away from Cambridge by nine o'clock and soon found ourselves in
a country quite different in appearance from any we had yet passed
through. Our route led through Essex to Colchester on the coast. We
passed through several ancient towns, the first of them being Haverhill,
which contributed a goodly number of the Pilgrim Fathers and gave its
name to the town of Haverhill in Massachusetts. It is an old, straggling
place that seems to be little in harmony with the progress of the
Twentieth Century.

Our route on leaving Haverhill led through narrow byways, which wind
among the hills with turns so sharp that a close lookout had to be
maintained. We paused at Heddingham, where there is a great church and a
partly ruined Norman castle. The town is made up largely of cottages
with thatched roofs, surrounded by the bright English flower gardens. It
was typical of several other places which we passed on our way. I think
that in no section of England did we find a greater number of
picturesque churches than in Essex, and a collection of photographs of
these, which was secured at Earl's Colne, we prize very highly.

Colchester is an interesting town, deserving of much longer time than we
were able to stay. It derived its name from King Cole, the "merry old
soul" of the familiar nursery rhyme. It is one of the oldest towns in
England and was of great importance in Roman times. One of the largest
collections of Roman relics in Britain is to be found in the museum of
the castle. There are hundreds of specimens of coin, pottery, jewelry,
statuary, etc., all of which were found in excavations within the city.
The castle is one of the gloomiest and rudest in the Kingdom, and was
largely built of Roman bricks. It is quadrangular in shape, with high
walls from twenty to thirty feet thick surrounding a small court. About
a hundred years ago it was sold to a contractor who planned to tear it
down for the material, but after half completing his task he gave it up,
leaving enough of the old fortress to give a good idea of what it was

The grim old ruin has many dark traditions of the times when "man's
inhumanity to man" was the rule rather than the exception. Even the
mild, nonresistant Quaker could not escape the bitterest persecution and
in one of the dungeons of Colchester Castle young George Fox was immured
and suffered death from neglect and starvation. This especially
attracted our attention, since the story had been pathetically told by
the speaker at the Sunday afternoon meeting which we attended at Jordans
and which I refer to in the following chapter. While there is a certain
feeling of melancholy that possesses one when he wanders through these
mouldering ruins, yet he often can not help thinking that they deserved
their fate.

Colchester suffered terribly in Parliamentary wars and only surrendered
to Cromwell after sustaining a seventy-six day siege, many traces of
which may still be seen. There are two or three ancient churches dating
from Saxon times which exhibit some remarkable specimens of Saxon
architecture. Parts of Colchester appeared quite modern and up-to-date,
the streets being beautifully kept, and there were many handsome
residences. Altogether, there is a strange combination of the very old
and the modern in Colchester.

We left this highway at Chelmsford to visit the Greenstead Church near
Chipping-Ongar, about twenty-two miles from London. This is one of the
most curious churches in all England. It is a diminutive building, half
hidden amidst the profusion of foliage, and would hardly attract
attention unless one had learned of its unique construction and
remarkable history. It is said to be the only church in England which is
built with wooden walls, these being made from the trunks of large oak
trees split down the center and roughly sharpened at each end. They are
raised from the ground by a low brick foundation, and inside the spaces
between the trunks are covered with pieces of wood. The rough timber
frame of the roof is fastened with wooden pins. The interior of the
building is quite dark, there being no windows in the wooden walls, and
the light comes in from a dormer window in the roof. This church was
built in the year 1010 to mark the resting place of St. Edmund the
Martyr, whose remains were being carried from Bury to London. The town
of Ongar, near by, once had an extensive castle, of which little
remains, and in the chancel of the church is the grave of Oliver
Cromwell's favorite daughter. A house in High Street was for some time
the residence of David Livingstone, the great African explorer.

From Chipping-Ongar we followed for the third time the delightful road
leading to London, passing through the village of Chigwell, of which I
have spoken at length elsewhere. On coming into London, we found the
streets in a condition of chaos, owing to repairs in the pavement. The
direct road was quite impassable and we were compelled to get into the
city through by-streets--not an easy task. In London the streets do not
run parallel as in many of our American cities. No end of inquiry was
necessary to get over the ten miles after we were in the city before we
reached our hotel. It was not very convenient to make inquiries, either,
when driving in streets crowded to the limit where our car could not
halt for an instant without stopping the entire procession. We would
often get into a pocket behind a slow-moving truck or street car and be
compelled to crawl along for several blocks at the slowest speed.

It was just sunset when we stopped in front of the Hotel Russell. We had
been absent on our tour six weeks to a day and our odometer registered
exactly 3070 miles. As there were five or six days of the time that we
did not travel, we had averaged about six hundred miles a week during
the tour. The weather had been unusually fine for England; we had
perhaps half a dozen rainy days, but only once did it rain heavily. We
had now traveled a total of 4100 miles and had visited the main points
of interest in the Kingdom excepting those in the country south of the
city, where we planned a short tour before sailing. We remained in
London a week before starting on this trip, but during that time I did
not take the car out of the garage. I had come to the conclusion that
outside of Sundays and holidays the nervous strain of attempting to
drive an automobile in the streets of London was such as to make the
effort not worth while.




Leaving London by the Harrow road, in course of an hour we came to the
famous college town, which lies about fifteen miles north of the city.
It is known chiefly for its boys' school, which was founded early in the
reign of Queen Elizabeth and at which many great Englishmen received
their early education. The school is situated on the top of a hill, one
of the most commanding positions in the vicinity of London, and on the
very summit is the Norman church. The view from this churchyard is one
of the finest in England. For many miles the fertile valley of the
Thames spreads out like a great park, exhibiting the most pleasing
characteristics of an English landscape. On one side the descent is
almost precipitous, and at the edge, in the churchyard, stands a
gigantic elm--now in the late stages of decay--which still bears the
sobriquet of "Byron's Elm." It is said that Byron, during his days at
Harrow, would sit here for hours at a time and contemplate the beautiful
scene which spread out before him. A descendant of one of the poet's
friends has placed near the spot a brass tablet, inscribed with the
somewhat stilted lines, On a Distant view From Harrow Churchyard,

    "Spot of my youth, whose hoary branches sigh,
    Swept by the breeze that fans the cloudless sky;
    O! as I trace again thy winding hill,
    Mine eyes admire, my heart adores thee still.
    Thou drooping elm! Beneath whose boughs I lay,
    And frequent mused the twilight hours away;
    How do thy branches, moaning to the blast,
    Invite this bosom to recall the past,
    And seem to whisper, as they gently swell,
    'Take, while thou canst, a lingering, last farewell'"

We reached Harrow too late to attend church as we had hoped, the morning
services just closing as we entered the churchyard. We saw everywhere
numbers of students in Sunday garb, and an odd appearance these boys of
from fifteen to eighteen presented in a costume very nearly the
counterpart of an ordinary dress suit, usually set off by a high silk
hat. Harrow is associated with the names of many men who attained high
rank in English history and literature, some of whom strove in their
boyhood days to anticipate immortality by carving their names on the
wooden desks. Among these may still be seen the rudely cut letters of
the names of Byron, Sheridan and Peele.

The town, which slopes away from the top of the hill, has an up-to-date
appearance and is a favorite place for suburban residences of wealthy
Londoners. The road leading down the hill from the church turned sharply
out of view, and just as we were beginning the descent a gentleman
hastened to us and cautioned us not to undertake it. He said that
numerous motors had been wrecked in the attempt. We went down by a
roundabout way, but when we came to pass the hill at its foot, we found
it was not nearly so steep as some we had already passed over.

Two or three hours over narrow and generally bad roads for England
brought us to the village of Chalfont St. Giles, where John Milton made
his residence while writing "Paradise Lost." It is a retired little
place, mere lanes leading into it. The shriek of the railroad train does
not disturb its quietude, the nearest station being several miles away.
The village doubtless appears much as it did in Milton's time, three
hundred years ago, and the cottage which he occupied stands practically
unaltered. A notice posted outside stated that the cottage would not be
shown on Sunday. But such announcements had little terror for us by this
time, and we found no difficulty in gaining admittance to the quaint
little building. It is in the Elizabethan style, with half-timber frame
and sagging tile roof. The windows have small, diamond-shaped panes of
leaded glass set in rude iron frames and open on a typical English
flower garden. The villagers purchased the cottage by public
subscription and its preservation is thus fortunately insured. The
tenant acts as caretaker and apparently takes pride in keeping the place
in order. The poet's room, directly on the right when entering, is
rather dark, and has a low-beamed ceiling. There is a wide fireplace
with the old time appliances accompanying it, and one can imagine the
blind poet sitting by his fireside on winter days or enjoying the
sweetness that in summertime came through the antique windows from the
flower garden. Here he dictated "Paradise Lost" to his daughter, who
acted as his secretary. One can not help contrasting the unsurpassed
majesty and dignity of the great poem with the humble and even rude
surroundings of the cottage. Milton came here in 1665 to escape the
plague which was then devastating London. His eldest daughter was at
that time about seventeen years of age, and there is reason to believe
that she was with him during his stay in St. Giles. We were delighted
with the place, for we had seen little else more typical of old-time
England than this cottage, which would have been worth seeing aside from
its connection with the great epic poet. In front was the garden, a
blaze of bright colors, and the walls were half hidden by climbing
rose-vines in full boom--for the roses in England stay much later in
the summer than they do with us. The entrance to the cottage fronts on
the garden. There is no door next the street, the great chimney built on
the outside leaving no room for one.


We were now in the vicinity where William Penn was born and where he
lies buried. We had some trouble in finding Jordans, the little
meeting-house near which is the grave of the Quaker philanthropist. Many
of the people of whom we inquired did not know of its existence, and
after considerable wandering through the byways we learned that we were
within a mile of the place. For this distance we followed a shady lane,
over-arched by trees and so ill kept that it was about as rough motoring
as one will find in England. Directly at the foot of a steep hill we
came upon the meeting-house, nestling in a wooded valley. It had in its
plain simplicity the appearance of an ordinary cottage; with the Quakers
there in no such thing as a church, for they prefer to call their places
of worship simply "meeting-houses." We were surprised to find a number
of people about the chapel and soon learned that we had the good fortune
to arrive on one of the meeting days. These meetings had for years been
held annually, but during the present summer they were being held once a
month. As the Friends are not numerous in this vicinity, many of the
congregation had come from long distances--some from London. We learned
this in conversation with a sweet-faced, quiet-mannered lady who had all
the Quaker characteristics. She said that she and her husband had come
from London that day, most of the way on their cycles; that they had
been in Philadelphia and knew something of America. She presented us to
a benevolent-looking, white-bearded man who afterwards proved to be the
leader of the meeting, simply saying, "Our friends are from Iowa." The
old gentleman pressed us to remain, as the meeting would begin
immediately, and we were delighted to acquiesce. There were about forty
people gathered in the little room, which was not more than fifteen by
twenty feet in size and supplied with the plainest straight-backed
benches imaginable. It was a genuine Quaker meeting. For perhaps half an
hour the congregation sat in perfect silence, and finally the old
gentleman who acted as leader arose and explained--largely for our
benefit, I think, as we were the only strangers present--that this was
the Quaker method of worship. Unless a member of the congregation felt
he had something really worth saying, he waited to speak only "as the
Spirit moved him." I could not help thinking that I had been in many
meetings where, if this rule had been followed, everybody would have
been better off. However, in the course of a few minutes he arose again
and began his talk. We had attended many services in England at noted
churches and cathedrals, but for genuine Christianity, true brotherly
love and real inspiration, I think the half hour talk of the old Quaker
was worth them all. We agreed that it was one of our most fortunate

In the churchyard we stood before the grave of William Penn, marked by
the plainest kind of a small headstone and identical with the few others
beside it. We expressed wonder at this, but the lady with whom we had
previously talked explained that it would be inharmonious with the
Quaker idea to erect a splendid monument to any man. For many years the
graves had not been marked at all, but finally it was decided that it
would not be inappropriate to put up plain headstones, all of the same
style, to let visitors know where the great Quaker and his family rest.
And very simple were the inscriptions chiseled upon the stones. All
around the meeting-house is a forest of great trees, and no other
building is in the immediate vicinity. One might almost have imagined
himself at a Quaker service in pioneer times in America, when the
meeting-houses were really as remote and secluded as this one seemed,
rather than within twenty miles of the world's metropolis, in a country
teeming with towns and villages.

It was about three o'clock when we left Jordans with a view of reaching
Oxford, still a good many miles away, by nightfall. In this vicinity are
the Burnham beeches, made known almost everywhere by the camera and the
brush of the artist. A byway runs directly among the magnificent trees,
which we found as imposing as the pictures had represented--sprawling
old trees, many feet in circumference, but none of very great height.
Near by is Stoke-Poges church, whose memory is kept alive by the "Elegy"
of the poet Gray. It is one of the best known of the English country
churches and is visited annually by thousands of people. The poet and
his relatives are buried in the churchyard and the yew tree under which
he is said to have meditated upon the theme of the immortal poem is
still standing, green and thriving. The church, half covered by ivy and
standing against a background of fine trees, presents a beautiful
picture. In the immediate neighborhood a monument has been raised in
memory of Gray--a huge bulk of stone of inartistic and unpleasing
design. The most appropriate monument of the poet is the church itself,
with its yew tree, which is now known wherever the English language is

Two or three miles farther on is Windsor, with its castle, the principal
residence of royalty, and Eton College, its well known school for boys.
This school is more exclusive and better patronized than Harrow, and I
was told that it is quite a difficult problem for the average youth to
enter at all. The sons of the nobility and members of the royal family
are given the preference and expenses are so high as to shut out all but
the wealthy. Windsor Castle is the most imposing of its kind in the
world. It is situated on the Thames River, about twenty miles from
London. Crowning a gently rising hill, its massive towers and
battlements afford a picturesque view from almost anywhere in the
surrounding country and especially from points of vantage in the park,
where one can catch glimpses of the fortress through some of the avenues
of magnificent trees. On a clear day, when the towers of the castle are
sharply outlined against the sky and surmounted by the brightly colored
royal standards, one might easily imagine himself back in the good old
days of knight-errantry. Windsor is shown to visitors at any time when
the royal family is not in residence. Queen Victoria and Albert, the
Prince Consort, are buried in Frogmore Park, near by, but the tombs are
sacredly guarded from the public. The grounds surrounding the castle are
laid out in flower gardens and parks, and the forest of more than seven
thousand acres is the finest in England. It is one of the royal
preserves where the king occasionally goes hunting, but it really serves
more the purpose of a great public park. There are many splendid drives
through the forest open to everybody, the main one leading straight away
from the castle gates for about four miles and terminating at an
equestrian statue of George the Third, of more or less happy memory.

A broad road leads from Windsor to Oxford; it is almost straight and
without hills of consequence. It is a favorite route for motorists, and
at several points were stationed bicycle couriers of the Motor Union to
give warning for police traps. These guards patrolled the road and
carried circular badges, red on one side and white on the other. If the
white side were shown to the passing motorist, the road ahead was clear;
but the red was a caution for moderate speed for several miles. This
system, which we found in operation in many places, is the means of
saving motor drivers from numerous fines. The bicycle courier receives a
fee very thankfully and no doubt this constitutes his chief source of
revenue for service rendered.

About ten miles from Oxford we passed through Henley-on-Thames, famed
for the University rowing-matches. Here the river lies in broad still
stretches that afford an ideal place for the contests. The Thames is
navigable for small steamboats and houseboats from London to Oxford, a
distance of sixty miles, and the shores of the stream throughout afford
scenes of surpassing beauty. Just at sunset the towers of Oxford
loomed in the distance, and it was easy to recognize that of Magdalen
College, which rises to a height of two hundred feet. Though Oxford is
one of the older of the English towns, parts of it seemed as up-to-date
as any we had seen, and the Randolph Hotel compared favorably with the
best we found anywhere.


The time which a tourist will devote to Oxford will depend upon his
point of view. To visit the forty-four colleges in detail and to give
any time to each would manifestly require several days--if not
weeks--and especially would this be true if one were interested to any
extent in student life in the University. Manifestly, people touring
England in a motor car do not belong to the class described. In order to
get the most out of the trip, there is a constant necessity for moving
on. By an economical use of time, one may gain a fair idea of Oxford in
a few hours. This was what we had done on a previous trip and
consequently we spent little time in the city on our second visit,
merely remaining over night. I think the method we pursued would be the
most practical for anyone who desires to reach the most interesting
points of the town in the shortest time. We engaged an experienced
hack-driver, who combined with his vocation the qualities of a well
informed guide as well. We told him of our limited time and asked him to
make the most of it by taking us about the universities, stopping at
such as would give us the best idea of the schools and of university
life. He did this to our satisfaction, and as we passed the various
institutions his comments gave us a general idea of each. He stopped at
some of the more noted colleges, where we often found guides who
conducted us about the buildings and grounds. Perhaps Magdalen College
is as interesting as any. Its fine quadrangular tower is one of the
landmarks of the city, and they will tell you of the quaint custom that
has prevailed for many centuries of celebrating May Day morning with
music from the top of the tower by a choir of boys. Magdalen has its
park and gardens, and Addison's Walk--a pathway extending for
considerable distance between an avenue of fine trees beside a clear
little river--is reputed to have been a haunt of the great essayist when
a student at the University. Next to Magdalen, the most celebrated
colleges are New College, Christ Church and Merton. At the first of
these Cecil Rhodes was a student, and the great promoter must have had a
warm feeling for the University, since his bequest has thrown open the
various colleges to more than a hundred students from all parts of the
world, but principally from the United States. Practically all of the
students have their quarters in connection with the colleges and meals
are served in public dining rooms.

Aside from its colleges, there is much else of interest in and about
Oxford. The castle, of which there are scant remains, is one of the very
oldest in England and has a varied and often stirring history. During
the Parliamentary War, Oxford was one of the strongholds of the king and
underwent many sieges from Cromwell's army--which was responsible for
the final destruction of the castle. As a seat of learning, the town
dates from the time of Alfred, who was born at Wantage, only twenty
miles away. Naturally, Oxford was always prominent in ecclesiastical
affairs and during the reign of Mary the three bishops of the English
church suffered martyrdom there. In one of the public places of the city
stands a tall Gothic monument commemorating the services of these men
and incidentally putting severe strictures on the "errors" of the Roman
church. The language in which this latter clause is stated caused a
storm of protest when the monument was erected, but it had no more
effect than did the protest against the iron-clad, anti-Catholic
coronation oath of the king. The Bodleian Library, located in Oxford, is
the greatest in England, with the exception of the library of the
British Museum.



Ten miles north of Oxford is Woodstock, near which is Blenheim Palace,
the seat of the Dukes of Marlborough. This great estate and imposing
mansion was presented by Act of Parliament to the first Duke of
Marlborough in recognition of the victory which he won over the French
at Blenheim. The architect who prepared the plans for the great
structure was the famous Sir John Vanbrugh, who was so noted for the
generally low heavy effect of his creations. While he was still alive a
wit proposed a satirical epitaph in the couplet,

    "Lie heavy on him, Earth, for he
    Laid many a heavy load on thee."

So enormous was the cost of the palace and estate that the half million
pounds sterling voted by parliament was not sufficient and more than
sixty thousand pounds of the great Duke's private fortune went into it
as well. In his fondness for state and display, he was quite the
opposite of the other great national hero, the Duke of Wellington, who
was satisfied with the greatest simplicity and preferred cash to
expensive palaces and great estates. As a consequence, the Dukes of
Marlborough have been land-poor for several generations and until
recently Blenheim Palace seemed in a fair way to be added to the already
long list of ruins in Britain. Something has lately been done in the way
of repair and restoration, but there are many evidences of decay still

[Illustration: RINGWOOD CHURCH.]

Blenheim Palace has been shorn of many of its treasures, among them the
great Sunderland Library of 80,000 volumes, sold at auction some years
ago. Many valuable objects of art still remain, especially family
portraits by nearly every great artist from Gainsborough to Sargent, and
there is much fine statuary. The tapestries, in the state rooms,
illustrating the achievements of the first Duke, are especially
remarkable and were made in Belgium under his directions. But from the
English view-point, no doubt the original documents pertaining to the
Duke are most notable; among these is the modest note which he addressed
to Queen Anne from Blenheim, announcing his "famous victory."

The park is one of the largest in England, but it showed many evidences
of neglect and slovenly care. Some of the worst looking cattle I saw in
England obstructed the ornamental stone bridge that crosses the stream
flowing into a large artificial lake within the park. The driveways were
not kept in the perfect manner that is characteristic of the English
private park. Despite these evidences of neglect, the beauty of the
place was little impaired. There are some of the finest oak trees in
England and down by the lake are groups of magnificent cedars through
whose branches the bright water shimmered in the sunshine. As we circled
about the park, the distant views of the palace well bore out its
reputation of being one of the stateliest private homes in the Kingdom.
Our guide pointed out the spot where once stood the manor-house of
Woodstock, torn down about a hundred years ago. In this house Princess
Elizabeth was held a prisoner for a time by her sister, Queen Mary, but
it is best known from the story of Walter Scott, who located here the
principal scenes of "Woodstock."

The town of Woodstock has a long line of traditions, but shows little
evidence of modern progress. It is a quiet, old-world little place with
clean streets and many fine trees. Tradition asserts that the father of
English poetry, Geoffrey Chaucer, was born here and the old house,
alleged to be his birthplace, still stands in Park Street. However, the
poet himself declares that London was his native city and the confiding
tourist is left with the necessity of balancing the poet's own assertion
on this important point against that of the Woodstock guide books. In
any event, Chaucer certainly lived in Woodstock--very likely in the
house assigned to him today. The town was also a residence of the Saxon
kings, and here are many legends of Henry II and Fair Rosamond. Perhaps
its most distinguished resident, however, was Oliver Cromwell, who put
up at an inn, now a private house, while his army battered down the old
palace as described by Scott.

We returned from Woodstock to Oxford and from there directed our course
to Wantage, the birthplace of King Alfred the Great and, I might
incidentally remark, at that time the residence of a well known
expatriated New York City politician. This latter distinction did not
occur to us until after we had left the town, and therefore we failed to
make inquiries as to how this gentleman was regarded by his
fellow-citizens of Oxfordshire. In this connection, soon afterwards I
saw an amusing report in the newspapers stating that a libel suit had
been brought against a British magazine for having published an article
in which the ex-boss was spoken of in an uncomplimentary manner. The
report stated that the case had been settled, the magazine editor paying
the legal costs and retracting what he had said, as well as publishing
an apology for the attack. Here we have an example of the British idea
of the sacredness of private character. This politician while in America
was almost daily accused by the newspapers of every crime in the
calendar and never thought it worth while to enter a denial. No sooner
is he fairly established in England than he brings suit against a
magazine whose charges appear to have been of the mildest character. One
seldom sees in English newspapers the violent attacks on individuals and
the severe denunciations of public men so common in American journals.
If the editor forgets himself, as in the case cited, suit for libel is
sure to be brought and often proves a serious thing. While this to some
extent may obstruct the freedom of the press, it is nevertheless a
relief to miss the disgraceful and unwarranted attacks on public men
that continually fill the columns of many American newspapers.

The road from Oxford to Wantage is a splendid one, running through a
beautiful country and bordered much of the way with ancient trees.
Wantage is a quiet town, lying at the foot of the hills, and is chiefly
noted as the birthplace of the great Saxon king. A granite statute of
Alfred stands in the market square, representing the king with the
charter of English liberties in one hand and a battle-ax in the other.
As he was born more than a thousand years ago, there are no buildings
now standing that were connected with his history. The church is
probably the oldest building--a fine example of early English
architecture. Near it is buried the wife of Whittington, "Lord Mayor of
Londontown." Dr. Butler, the theologian and author of "The Analogy," was
born in the town and this house is still to be seen.

Leaving Wantage, the road to Reading runs along the crest of the hills,
and on either side from the breezy uplands, the green fields, dashed
with the gold of the ripening harvest, stretched away for many miles.
This was one of the few spots in England where the view was unobstructed
by fences of any kind, and while the average English hedge-row is not
unpleasing, the beauty of the landscape in this instance certainly did
not suffer by its absence. From Kingston-on-Thames, the perfectly kept
road closely follows the river. Reading has a population of about one
hundred and twenty thousand and is a place of considerable business
activity. Though the city has a history stretching back to ancient
times, most of the evidences of antiquity have disappeared in modern
progress. It was chosen as the seat of Elizabeth's parliament when the
plague was devastating London. Fragments of the old abbey hall in which
this parliament met still remain and the gateway was restored a few
years ago. Reading offered a stout resistance to the Commonwealth and
suffered severely at Cromwell's hands. Its chief industries today are
biscuit making and seed farming, which give employment to ten thousand

From Reading, a few miles through byways brought us to Eversley, a
retired village five miles from a railway station, where the church and
rectory of Charles Kingsley may be seen. The church is picturesquely
situated on the hillside, with an avenue of fine yew trees leading from
the gate to the door. The building has been altered a good deal since
Kingsley was rector, but the pulpit from which he preached is
practically the same. The rectory, which is directly by the church, is a
very old building, though it has been modernized on the side fronting
the road. It stands in the midst of a group of Scotch firs which were
great favorites with Kingsley. Their branches almost touch the earth,
while their huge trunks form a strong contrast with the dense green of
the foliage. Kingsley and his wife are buried in the churchyard on the
side nearest the firs. The graves are marked by a simple Runic cross in
white marble bearing the names, the date, and the legend, "God is Love."
Eversley and its surroundings are thoroughly typical of rural England. A
quieter and more retired little place could hardly be imagined. One
wonders why the great novelist and preacher spent so many years of his
life here. It may have been that the seclusion was not a little
conducive to his successful literary labors.

Thirty miles farther over main-traveled highways brought us for a second
time to Winchester. Here we stopped for the night after an unusually
long run. An early start soon brought us to Southampton, which is known
everywhere as a port of arrival and departure of great merchant steamers
and which, aside from its commercial importance, is one of the most
ancient and interesting cities in the Kingdom. The most notable relic is
a portion of the Saxon wall, the part known as the "Arcade," built in a
series of arches, being the most remarkable. Close by, in a little
street called Blue Anchor Lane, is a house reputed to have been the
palace of King John and said to be the oldest in England, although
several others contest that distinction. At the head of Blue Anchor Lane
is a picturesque Tudor house, once the residence of Henry VIII and his
queen, Anne Boleyn. This is open to visitors and we were shown every
part of the house by the tenant, who is also custodian. With all its
magnificence of carved oak and wide fireplaces, it must have been a
comfortless dwelling measured by more modern ideas.

Leaving the city, we crossed Southampton Water on a steam ferry which
was guided by a chain stretched from bank to bank. Two or three miles to
the southward lies Netley, a small village with the remains of an abbey
dating from the reign of Henry I. The road to Netley followed the shore
closely, but on nearing the village suddenly entered an avenue of fine
trees which so effectually concealed the ruin that we stopped directly
opposite the abbey to inquire its whereabouts. Leaving the car standing
in the road, we spent a quarter of an hour wandering about the ruin and
trying to locate the various apartments from a hand-book. The custodian
here did not act as a guide, and we were left to figure out for
ourselves the intricacies of nave, refectory, cloister, etc. Only the
ivy-covered walls of the building are now standing, but these are in an
unusual state of completeness. The chapel or church was cruciform in
shape and built in the early English style. The walls of the west end
have practically disappeared, but the great east window is fairly well
preserved and its most remarkable feature is its two beautifully
proportioned lights, the stone tracery of which remains almost intact. A
legend in connection with this abbey no doubt grew out of the desire of
some of the people to prevent the destruction of the beautiful building.
After the abbey had been dismantled, the church was sold to a
contractor, who proceeded to tear it down for the material. He was
warned in a dream by the appearance of a monk not to proceed with the
work, but disregarded the warning and was killed by the falling of a
portion of the wall. If incidents of this kind had happened more
frequently England would no doubt be richer in historic buildings.

We were preparing to leave Netley when a man in plain clothes
approached us, and civilly touching his hat, inquired if I were the
owner of the motor car. I confessed that I was and he stated he was an
officer and regretted that he would have to report me to the police
captain for leaving the car standing on a public walk. I had
inadvertantly left the machine so that it partially obstructed the
narrow gravel walk alongside the road, and some of the citizens had no
doubt complained to the officer. We were naturally enough much
chagrined, not knowing how much inconvenience and delay this incident
might cause. The constable took my name and the number of the car and
said I could report the circumstance myself to the captain of the
police. I desired him to accompany me to call on this dignitary, but he
did not seem at all anxious for the job.

This is the general procedure in England. An arrest is very seldom made
in a case of this kind. The officer simply takes the name and number and
the motorist can call on the proper official himself. The police system
is so perfect that it would be quite useless to attempt to run away, as
would happen if such a system were pursued in this country. If, in the
judgment of the police official, the case should come to trial, a
summons is served on the offender and the date is set. This is what I
feared might happen in this case, and as it was within a week of our
sailing time, I could imagine that it might cause a great deal of

I found the police captain's office in a neatly kept public building
with a flower garden in front of it. I put the case to the captain, and
after he had learned all the particulars he hastened to assure me that
he would waive prosecution of the offense. He said some of the people in
Netley were prejudiced against motors and no doubt were annoyed by the
numerous tourists who came there to visit the abbey. Thus all the
difficulties I had conjured up faded away and I had a pleasant
conversation with the captain, who was a thorough gentleman. He said
that the motor car was detested by many people, and no doubt with reason
in some cases; but it had come to stay and forbearance and common sense
were needed on part of motorist and the public generally. Much of the
trouble, he stated, is due to reckless motorists who disregard the
rights of other people. The week previous they had considerable
difficulty in his district with an American who drove his car recklessly
and defied regulations, and it was such performances that were
responsible for the prejudice against the motor. This incident was my
only personal experience with the British police in official capacity,
barring a friendly admonition or two in London when I managed to get on
the right side of the road--which is literally the wrong side in

The English police, taken as a whole, is unquestionably the most
efficient and best disciplined in the world. A policeman's authority is
never questioned in England and his raised hand is a signal that never
goes unheeded. He has neither club nor revolver and seldom has need for
these weapons. He is an encyclopedia of information, and the cases where
he lent us assistance both in directing us on our road and informing us
as to places of interest, literally numbered hundreds. He is a believer
in fair play and seldom starts out of his own accord to make anyone
trouble. It is not the policeman, but the civil officials who are
responsible for the police traps which in many places are conducted in a
positively disreputable manner, the idea being simply to raise revenue
regardless of justice and without discrimination among the offenders.
Graft among British policemen is unknown and bribery altogether unheard
of. Of course their task is easier than that of the average American
policeman, on account of the greater prevalence of the law-abiding
spirit among the people. One finds policemen everywhere. Even the
country districts are carefully patrolled. The escape of a law-breaker
is a difficult if not impossible thing. One seldom hears in England of a
motorist running away and leaving the scene of an accident that he has
caused. Another thing that greatly helps the English policeman in his
work is that a captured criminal is not turned loose again as is often
the case in this country. Justice is surer and swifter in England, and
as a consequence crime averages less than in most parts of the States.
The murders committed yearly in Chicago outnumber many times those of
London, which is three times as large. The British system of
administering justice is one that in many particulars we could imitate
to advantage in this country.

After bidding farewell to my friend the police captain and assuring him
I was glad that our acquaintance terminated so quickly and happily, we
proceeded on our way towards Chichester. The road for a distance of
twenty-five miles led through an almost constant succession of towns and
was frightfully dusty. The weather was what the natives call "beastly
hot," and really was as near an approach to summer as we had experienced
so far.

The predominating feature of Chichester is its cathedral, which dates
from about 1100. It suffered repeatedly from fires and finally underwent
complete restoration, beginning in 1848. The detached bell-tower is
peculiar to the cathedral. This, although the most recent part of the
building, appeared to be crumbling away and was undergoing extensive
repairs. The cathedral is one of lesser importance among the great
English churches, though on the whole it is an imposing edifice.

[Illustration: A SURREY LANDSCAPE.

From Painting by D. Sherrin.]

At Chichester we stopped for lunch at the hotel, just opposite the
cathedral, where we had an example of the increasing tendency of hotel
managers to recoup their fortunes by special prices for the benefit of
tourists. On entering the dining room we were confronted with large
placards conveying the cheerful information that luncheon would cost
five shillings, or about $1.25 each. Evidently the manageress desired
the victims to be prepared for the worst. There was another party in the
dining room, a woman with five or six small children, and a small riot
began when she was presented with a bill of five shillings for each of
them. The landlady, clad in a low-necked black dress with long sweeping
train, was typical of many we saw in the old-country hotels. She
received her guest's protest with the utmost hauteur, and when we left
the altercation was still in progress. It was not an uncommon thing in
many of the dingiest and most unpretentious hotels to find some of the
women guests elaborately dressed for dinner in the regulation low neck
and long train. In many cases the example was set by the manageress and
her assistants, though their attire not infrequently was the worse for
long and continuous use.

Directly north of Chichester lie the picturesque hills of Surrey, which
have not inaptly been described as the play-ground of London. The
country around Chichester is level bordering on the coast. A few miles
to the north it becomes rough and broken. About twenty miles in this
direction is Haselmere, with many associations of George Eliot and
Tennyson. This, together with the picturesque character of the country,
induced us to turn our course in that direction, although we found a
number of steep hills that were as trying as any we had met with. On the
way we passed through Midhurst, one of the quaintest of Surrey towns,
situated on a hill so steep and broken as to be quite dangerous. Not far
from this place is the home of Richard Cobden, the father of English
free trade, and he is buried in the churchyard near the town. He was
evidently held in high regard in his time, for his house, which is still
standing, was presented him by the nation. Among the hills near the town
are several stately English country houses, and about half a mile
distant are the ruins of Cowdray mansion, which about a hundred years
ago was one of the most pretentious of all. There was an old tradition
which said that the house and family should perish by fire and water,
and it was curiously enough fulfilled when the palace burned and the
last lord of the family was drowned on the same day.




Twenty miles over a narrow road winding among the hills brought us to
Shottermill, where George Eliot spent much of her time after 1871--a
pleasant little hamlet clinging to a steep hillside. The main street of
the village runs up the hill from a clear little unbridged stream, over
whose pebbly bottom our car dashed unimpeded, throwing a spray of water
to either side. At the hilltop, close to the church, is the
old-fashioned, many-gabled cottage which George Eliot occupied as a
tenant and where she composed her best known story, "Middlemarch." The
cottage is still let from time to time, but the present tenant was away
and the maid who answered us declined to show the cottage in her
mistress' absence--a rather unusual exhibition of fidelity. The village,
the surrounding country, and the charming exterior of the cottage, with
its ivy and climbing roses, were quite enough to repay us for coming
though we were denied a glimpse of the interior.

Haselmere is only a mile distant--a larger and unusually fine-looking
town with a number of good hotels. It is a center for tourists who come
from London to the Hindhead District--altogether one of the most
frequented sections of England. The country is wild and broken, but in
late summer and autumn it is ablaze with yellow gorse and purple heather
and the hills are covered with the graceful Scotch firs. All about are
places of more or less interest and a week could be spent in making
excursions from Haselmere as a center. This country attracted Tennyson,
and here he built his country seat, which he called Aldworth. George
Eliot often visited him at this place. The house is surrounded by a park
and the poet here enjoyed a seclusion that he could not obtain in his
Isle of Wight home. Aldworth belongs to the present Lord Tennyson, son
of the poet, who divides his time between it and Farringford in the Isle
of Wight, and neither of the places are shown to visitors. However, a
really interested party might see the house or even live in it, for we
saw in the window of a real estate man in Haselmere a large photograph
of Aldworth, with a placard announcing that it was to be "let
furnished"--doubtless during the period of the year the owner passes at
Farringford House.

[Illustration: ARUNDEL CASTLE.]

Much as we wished to tarry in this vicinity, our time was so limited
that we were compelled to hasten on. It was nearly dark when we reached
Arundel, whose castle, the residence of the Duke of Norfolk, was the
stateliest private mansion we saw in England. The old castle was
almost dismantled by Cromwell's troops, but nearly a hundred years ago
restoration was begun by the then Duke of Norfolk. It was carried out as
nearly as possible along the lines of the old fortress, but much of the
structure was rebuilt, so that it presents, as a whole, an air of
newness. The great park, one of the finest in England, is open to
visitors, who may walk or drive about at will. The road into the town
leads through this park for many miles. Bordered on both sides by
ancient trees and winding between them in graceful curves, it was one of
the most beautiful that we had seen anywhere.

We had planned to stop at Arundel, but the promise in our guide-books of
a "level and first-class" road to Brighton, and the fact that a full
moon would light us, determined us to proceed. It proved a pleasant
trip; the greater part of the way we ran along the ocean, which sparkled
and shimmered as it presented a continual vista of golden-hued water
stretching away toward the moon. It was now early in August; the English
twilights were becoming shorter, and for the third time it was necessary
to light the gas-lamps. We did not reach the hotel in Brighton until
after ten o'clock.

Brighton is probably the most noted seaside resort in England--a
counterpart of our American Atlantic City. It is fifty miles south of
London, within easy reach of the metropolis, and many London business
men live here, making the trip every day. The town has a modern
appearance, having been built within the past hundred years, and is more
regularly laid out than the average English city. For two or three miles
fronting the beach there is a row of hotels, some of them most palatial.
The Grand, where we stopped, was one of the handsomest we saw in
England. It has an excellent garage in connection and the large number
of cars showed how important this branch of hotel-keeping had become.
There is no motor trip more generally favored by Londoners than the run
to Brighton, as a level and nearly straight road connects the two
cities. There is nothing here to detain a tourist who is chiefly
interested in historic England. About a hundred years ago the fine sunny
beach was "discovered" and the fishing village of Brightholme was
rapidly transformed into one of the best built and most modern of the
resort towns in England. Its present population of over one hundred
thousand places it at the head of the exclusive watering places, so far
as size is concerned.

A little to the north of Brighton is Lewes, the county town of Sussex,
rich in relics of antiquity. Its early history is rather vague, but it
is known to have been an important place under the Saxon kings. William
the Conqueror generously presented it to one of his followers, who
fortified it and built the castle the ruins of which crown the hill
overlooking the town. The keep affords a vantage point for a magnificent
view, extending in every direction. I had seen a good many English
landscapes from similar points of vantage, notably the castles of
Ludlow, Richmond, Raglan, Chepstow and others, and it seemed strange
that in such a small country there should be so many varying and
distinctly dissimilar prospects, yet all of them pleasing and

The country around Lewes is hilly and rather devoid of trees. It is
broken in many places by chalk bluffs, and the chalky nature of the soil
was noticeable in the whiteness of the network of country roads. Many
old houses are still standing in the town and one of these is pointed
out as the residence of Anne of Cleves, one of the numerous wives of
Henry VIII. Near the town and plainly visible from the tower is the
battlefield where in 1624 the Battle of Lewes was fought between Henry
VII and the barons, led by Simon de Montfort. Lewes appears to be an
old, staid and unprogressive town. No doubt all the spirit of progress
in the vicinity has been absorbed by the city of Brighton, less than a
dozen miles away. If there has been any material improvement in Lewes
for the past hundred years, it is hardly apparent to the casual

We were now in a section of England rich in historic associations. We
were nearing the spot where William the Conqueror landed and where the
battle was fought which overthrew the Saxon dynasty--which an eminent
authority declares to have done more to change the history of the
Anglo-Saxon race than any other single event. From Lewes, over crooked,
narrow and rather rough roads, we proceeded to Pevensey, where the
Normans landed nearly a thousand years ago. It is one of the sleepy,
unpretentious villages that dot the southern coast of England, but it
has a history stretching far back of many of the more important cities
of the Kingdom. It was a port of entry in early times and is known to
have been in existence long before the Romans came to Britain. The
Romans called it Anderida, and their city was situated on the site of
the castle. Like other Sussex towns, Pevensey lost its position as a
seaport owing to a remarkable natural movement of the coast line, which
has been receding for centuries. When the Conqueror landed the sea came
up to the castle walls, but now there is a stretch of four miles of
meadowland between the coast and the town.

The castle, rude and ruinous, shows the work of many centuries, and was
really a great fortress rather than a feudal residence. It has been in a
state of decay for many hundreds of years, but its massive walls, though
ivy-grown and crumbling, still show how strongly it was built. It is
now the property of the Duke of Devonshire, who seeks to check further
decay and opens it to the public without charge.


Battle, with its abbey, is a few miles from Pevensey. This abbey marks
the site of the conflict between the Normans and the Saxons and was
built by the Conqueror on the spot where Harold, the Saxon king, fell,
slain by a Norman arrow. William had piously vowed that if he gained the
victory he would commemorate it by building an abbey, and this was the
origin of Battle Abbey. William took care, however, to see that it was
filled with Norman monks, who were granted extraordinary privileges and
treasure, mostly at the expense of the conquered Saxons. The abbey is
one of the best preserved of the early monastic buildings in England,
and is used as a private residence by the proprietor. The church is in
ruins, but the great gateway, with its crenelated towers, and the main
part of the monastic building are practically as they were when
completed, shortly after the death of the Conqueror.

Battle Abbey, since the time of our visit, has passed into the
possession of an American, who has taken up his residence there. This
case is typical of not a few that came to our attention during our stay
in England. Many of the historic places that have for generations been
in the possession of members of the nobility have been sold to wealthy
Americans or Englishmen who have made fortunes in business. These
transactions are made possible by a law that permits entailed estates to
be sold when the owner becomes embarrassed to such an extent that he can
no longer maintain them. And some of these places are sold at
astonishingly low figures--a fraction of their cost. It is another of
the signs of the changing social conditions in the British Empire.

A quaint old village is Winchelsea, on the coast about fifteen miles
from Battle. It is a small, straggling place, with nothing but its
imposing though ruinous church and the massive gateways of its ancient
walls remaining to indicate that at one time it was a seaport of some
consequence. But here, as at Pevensey, the sea receded several miles,
destroying Winchelsea's harbor. Its mosts interesting relic is the
parish church, built about 1288. The greater portion of this is now in
ruins, nothing remaining but the nave, which is still used for services.
In the churchyard, under a great tree, still standing, John Wesley
preached his last open-air sermon.


Two miles from Winchelsea is Rye, another of the decayed seaports of the
southeast coast. A few small fishing vessels still frequent its harbor,
but the merchant ships, which used to contribute to its prosperity, are
no longer seen. It is larger than Winchelsea and is built on a hill, its
steep, narrow streets being lined with quaint houses. These two queer
towns seem indeed like an echo from the past. It does not appear that
there have been any changes of consequence in them for the past several
hundred years. People continue to live in such villages because the
average Englishman has a great aversion to leaving his native land. One
would think that there would be emigration from such places to the
splendid lands of Western Canada, but these lands are not being taken by
Englishmen, although the opportunity is being widely advertised by the
Canadian Government and the various transportation companies. And yet
one can hardly wonder at the reluctance of the native Englishman to
leave the "tight little island," with its trim beauty and proud
tradition, for the wild, unsubdued countries of the West. If loyal
Americans, as we can rightly claim to be, are so greatly charmed with
England, dear indeed it must be to those who can call it their native

Winchelsea and Rye are typical of hundreds of decayed towns throughout
the Kingdom, though perhaps they are more interesting from an historic
standpoint than the others. Being so near the French coast, they
suffered terribly in the continual French and English wars and were
burned several times by the French in their descents upon the English
coast. It was nearly dark when we reached Rye; we had planned to stop
there, but the uninviting appearance of the hotel was a strong factor
in determining us to reach Tunbridge Wells, about thirty miles away.

We saw few more beautiful landscapes than those which stretched away
under the soft glow of the English twilight from the upland road leading
out of Rye. We did not have much leisure to contemplate the beauty of
the scene, but such a constant succession of delightful vistas as we
dashed along, together with the exhilaration of the fresh sea breeze,
forms a pleasing recollection that will not be easily effaced. The
twilight was beginning to fade away beneath the brilliancy of the full
moon when we ran into the village of Bodiam, where stands one of the
most perfect of the ancient castellated mansions to be found in the
Kingdom. We paused a few minutes to view it from a distance and found
ourselves directly in front of a neat-looking hotel--the Castle Inn. Its
inviting appearance, our desire to see the castle more closely, and the
fact that Tunbridge Wells was still a good many miles away over winding
roads liberally sprinkled with steep hills, led us to make Bodiam our
stopping place. There are few things that we have more reason for
rejoicing over, for we saw the gray walls and towers of Bodiam Castle
under the enchanting influence of a full, summer moon.

The castle was built in 1385 and appears to have been intended more as
a palatial residence than a feudal fortress. Its position is not a
strong one for defense, being situated on a level plain rather than upon
a commanding eminence, as is usually the case with fortified castles. It
was built after artillery had come into use, and the futility of
erecting a structure that would stand against this new engine of
destruction must have been obvious. The most remarkable feature is the
wide moat which surrounds the castle. In fact, this gives it the
appearance of standing on an island in the middle of a small lake. The
water of the moat was nearly covered by water-lilies.

The walls of the castle are wonderfully complete, every tower and turret
retaining its old-time battlements. It is supposed never to have
sustained an attack by armed forces and its present condition is due to
neglect and decay. From our point of view, it must have been an
insanitary place, standing in the low-lying fens in the midst of a pool
of stagnant water, but such reflection does not detract from its beauty.
I have never seen a more romantic sight than this huge, quadrangular
pile, with its array of battlements and towers rising abruptly out of
the dark waters of the moat. And its whole aspect, as we beheld
it--softened in outline by the mellow moonlight--made a picture that
savored more of enchantment than reality.

Although the hour was late, the custodian admitted us to the ruins and
we passed over a narrow bridge which crossed the moat. The pathway led
through a door in the great gateway, over which still hangs suspended
the iron port-cullis. Inside there was a grassy court, surrounded by the
walls and ruined apartments of the castle. I ascended one of the main
towers by a dilapidated stone stairway and was well repaid for the
effort by the glorious moonlit prospect that stretched out before me.

When we returned to the Castle Inn, we found the landlady all attention
and she spared no effort to contribute to our comfort. The little inn
was cleanlier and better kept than many of the more pretentious ones.
Bodiam is several miles from the railroad and but few tourists visit the
castle. The principal business of the hotel is to cater to parties of
English trippers who make the neighborhood a resort for fishing and

An early start from Bodiam brought us to Tunbridge Wells before ten
o'clock in the morning. This city, although of considerable size, is
comparatively modern and has little to detain tourists. Like Harrogate
and Bath, its popularity is largely due to its mineral springs. In its
immediate neighborhood, however, there are many places of interest, and
we determined to make a circular tour among some of these, returning to
Tunbridge Wells for the night.


A few miles from Tunbridge Wells is Offham, a little, out-of-the-way
village which boasts of a queer mediaeval relic, the only one of the
kind remaining in the Kingdom. This is called a quintain post and stands
in the center of the village green. It consists of a revolving crossbar
on the top of a tall, white post. One end of the bar is flattened and
pierced with small holes, while at the other a billet of wood is
suspended from a chain. The pastime consisted of riding on horseback and
aiming a lance at one of the holes in the broad end of the crossbar. If
the aim were true, the impact would swing the club around with violence,
and unless the rider were agile he was liable to be unhorsed--rough and
dangerous sport, but no doubt calculated to secure dexterity with the
lance on horseback. This odd relic is religiously preserved by the
village and looks suspiciously new, considering the long period since
such a pastime must have been practiced. However, this may be due to the
fact that the tenant of an adjoining cottage is required by the terms of
his lease to keep the post in good repair, a stipulation, no doubt, to
which we owe its existence.

In Westerham, a few miles farther on, we saw the vicarage where Gen.
Wolfe, the hero of Quebec, was born. His parents were tenants of this
house for a short time only, and soon after his birth they moved to the
imposing residence now known as Quebec House, and here Wolfe spent the
first twelve years of his life. It is a fine Tudor mansion and has been
little altered since the boyhood of the great warrior. Visitors are not
now admitted. There are many relics of Wolfe in Westerham, and the spot
where he received his first military commission is marked by a stone
with an appropriate inscription. Wolfe's memory is greatly revered in
England and he is looked upon as the man who saved not only Canada, but
the United States as well, to the Anglo-Saxon race.

Quite as closely connected with American history as Quebec House is the
home of William Pitt, near at hand. Holwood House, as it is called, is a
stately, classic building, situated in a great forest-clad park. It
passed out of the hands of Pitt more than a hundred years ago, and being
in possession of a private owner, is no longer open to visitors.

Passing again into the hedge-bordered byways, we came to Downe, a
retired village four miles from the railway station and known to fame as
having been the home of Charles Darwin. Downe House, where he lived, is
still standing, a beautiful old Eighteenth Century place which was
considerably altered by Darwin himself. The house at present is
evidently in the hands of a prosperous owner, for it was apparent that
watchful care is expended upon it. But it is in no sense a show-place
and the few pilgrims who come to the town must content themselves with
a glimpse from the outside.

To get a view of the place, I surreptitiously stepped through the open
gateway, the house itself being some distance from the road and
partially concealed by the hedges and trees in front of it. It is a
rather irregular, three-story building, with lattice windows surrounded
by ivy and climbing roses. It stands against a background of fir trees,
with a stretch of green lawn and flowers in front, and the whole place
had an air of quiet beauty and repose. On the front of the house was an
ancient sun-dial, and across it, in antique letters, the legend "Time
will show." I do not know whether this was placed there by Darwin or
not, but it is the most appropriate answer which the great scientist
might have made to his hosts of critics. Time has indeed shown, and the
quiet philosopher who lived in this retired village has revolutionized
the thought of the civilized world.



One of the greatest show-places of England is Knole House, the seat of
the Sackville-Wests, near Seven-Oaks. The owner at the time of our visit
was the Lord Sackville-West who was British ambassador at Washington,
where he achieved notoriety by answering a decoy letter advising a
supposed British-American to vote for Grover Cleveland as being
especially friendly to England. The letter created a tremendous furor in
the United States, and the result was the abrupt recall of the
distinguished writer from his post.

No difficulty is experienced in obtaining admission to Knole House,
providing one pays the price. The thousands of tourists who come
annually are handled in a most businesslike manner. An admission fee of
two shillings, or about fifty cents, is charged, and at numerous stands
near the gateway photographs, post cards, souvenirs and guide-books
galore are sold. Motor cars are allowed to drive right up to the great
gateway, where they are assigned a position and supervised by an
attendant, all for the sum of one shilling. However, the show is well
worth the price, and the owner of the palace is entitled to no small
credit for making it so readily accessible.

The house is a fine example of the baronial residences erected just
after the period of fortified castles, when artillery had rendered these
fortress-mansions useless as a means of defense. It surrounds three
square courts and covers about five acres; it contains three hundred and
sixty-five rooms and has seven great staircases, some of them very
elaborate. The collection of paintings and mediaeval furniture is one of
the best in England. The pictures are of untold value, one room being
filled with originals by Gainsborough and Reynolds alone. Some idea of
the value of these pictures may be gained from the fact that an offer of
twenty thousand pounds for one of the Gainsboroughs was refused; and
there are other pictures quite as valuable, not only by English masters,
but by great continental artists as well.

King James I visited Knole House and preparations were made to receive
him as befitted his rank. The immense stateroom was especially furnished
for the occasion at a cost, it is said, of about one hundred thousand
pounds. This room has never been used since and it stands today just as
it did when it served its royal occupant, though the gorgeous hangings
and tapestries are somewhat dingy and worn from the dust and decay of
three hundred years.

It took nearly two hours to go through the parts of the house that are
shown, although the parties were accompanied by guides who kept them
moving along. On the afternoon of our arrival there were quite a number
of visitors, five motor cars and several carriages bringing them. Knole
House stands in a large park, which has the finest beeches in England,
and it is really more of a show-place than a family residence. The
Sackville-Wests are among the richest of the nobility and have other
homes which are probably more comfortable than this impressive but
unhomelike palace.


Something similar to Knole House is Penshurst Place, about ten miles
away, but with an atmosphere and traditions quite different from the
Sackville-West mansion. This great palace, just adjacent to the village
of Penshurst, was built in the Thirteenth Century, passing shortly after
into the hands of the Sidney family, with whom it has remained ever
since. Of the Sidneys, one only is known wherever the English language
is spoken--the gallant young knight, Sir Philip, who, when still below
the age of thirty, lost his life while fighting for a forlorn cause in
the Netherlands. Of all the brilliant array of statesmen, soldiers and
writers who graced the reign of Queen Elizabeth, none gave greater
promise than did young Sidney. Nothing is more characteristic of him
than the oft-told story of how, when suffering from his death-wound
on the field of Zutphen, he gave to a wounded soldier by his side the
cup of water brought to him with the greatest difficulty. There are few
who have received a higher or a more deserved tribute than that of the
poet Watson, when he mused upon

                    "the perfect knight,
    The soldier, courtier, bard in one,
      Sidney, that pensive Hesper-light
    O'er Chivalry's departed Sun."

Naturally, we were interested in the ancestral home of such a man and
the many historical associations which have gathered round it. It was at
the close of a busy day for us when we reached Penshurst and learned
that half an hour remained before the house would be closed for the day.
Admission was easily gained and ample time given to inspect such parts
of the house as were shown. We entered the great park through a gateway
near the church where several members of the Sidney family are buried.

The palace stands in a large open space with a level lawn in front, and
the five hundred years which have passed over it have dealt kindly with
it. Few of the ancient places which we had seen in England were in
better state of preservation. Nor was this due so much to restoration as
in many cases. It had never been intended as a fortified castle and had
escaped the ravages of war which destroyed so many of the strongholds.
Its most striking feature is the baronial hall with its high,
open-raftered roof, maintained in general appearance and furnishing much
as it was five hundred years ago. It is of great size, and in early days
the tables probably furnished cheer to hundreds of revelers at a time.
At one end of the room is a gallery which the musicians occupied, and at
the other, our attention was called to a small opening through which the
lord of the establishment could secretly witness the doings in the hall.
A remarkable feature is the fireplace, situated in the center of the
room and without chimney of any kind, the smoke being left to find its
way out through the windows or apertures in the roof, as the case might
be--a striking example of the discomforts of the good old days when
knighthood was in flower.

Queen Elizabeth, who was one of the greatest royal travelers of her
time, made a visit to the home of her favorite, Sidney, and the drawing
room which she honored as a guest is still shown, with much of the
handsome furniture which was especially made for the occasion of Her
Majesty's visit. On the walls are some examples of beautifully wrought
needlework and satin tapestry which tradition says is the work of the
queen herself and her maidens. In the picture gallery the majority of
the paintings are portraits of the Sidney family.

From Penshurst we returned to Tunbridge Wells, having covered in all
about one hundred miles since leaving that town--not a very long
distance for a day's motoring, but we had seen more things of interest,
perhaps, than on any other day of our tour. It was a fitting close to
our tour, since we had determined that we would at once return to London
and bid farewell to the English highways and byways. The next morning we
spent a short time looking about Tunbridge Wells. This town has been
known as a watering place since 1606 and has maintained great popularity
ever since. Its unique feature is the promenade, known as "The
Pantiles," with its row of stately lime trees in the center and its
colonade in front of the shops. It is referred to in Thackeray's
"Virginians," and readers of that story will recall his description of
the scenes on the Pantiles in the time of the powdered wigs, silver
buckles and the fearful and wonderful "hoop." Tunbridge Wells makes a
splendid center for several excursions and one might well spend
considerable time there. Our trip of the previous day had taken us at no
time more than thirty miles from the town and had covered only a few of
the most interesting places within that distance.

We were ready to leave Tunbridge Wells before noon, and it was with
feelings of mingled satisfaction and regret that we turned toward
London, about thirty miles away. Our long summer's pilgrimage through
Britain was over. Despite our anxiety to return home, there was, after
all, a sense of regret that we had left undone much that would have been
well worth while. Our last day on the English country roads was a lovely
one. A light rain had fallen the night before, just enough to beat down
the dust and freshen the landscape. We passed through a country thickly
interspersed with suburban towns. The fields had much the appearance of
a well kept park, and everything conspired to make the day a pleasant

When we came into the immediate suburbs of London, I found that the
knowledge I had gained on our frequent trips gave me a great advantage
in getting into the city. I was able to avoid the crowded streets and to
select those where traffic was lighter, thus reducing the time of
reaching our hotel fully an hour. There is much difference in the
traffic on the eight bridges which cross the Thames. London Bridge,
which crosses near the Bank of England, is the most congested of all.
There is hardly an hour when it is not a compact mass of slowly moving
vehicles. The bridge by Parliament House is less crowded, but I should
say that Waterloo Bridge furnishes the best route for motorists in
getting across the river. It leads directly into the new boulevard known
as Kingsway, which has just been completed at an expense of many
millions of pounds. This is the broadest street in London and was opened
by wholesale condemnation of private property. It is little used for
heavy traffic and has a fine asphalted surface. It extends from the
Strand to Holborn, the two principal business arteries of London. The
street now presents a rather ragged appearance on account of the
buildings that were torn down to make way for it. However, new
structures of fine architecture are rapidly being built and Kingsway is
destined to become one of the handsomest boulevards in the world.

A little after noon we reached our London hotel, having spent ten weeks
in touring England, Wales and Scotland. We had not confined ourselves to
the highways, but had journeyed a great part of the distance through
less frequented country roads. In fact, many of the most charming places
we had visited could be reached only from the byways and were not
immediately accessible from railway stations. With the exception of the
first two weeks, when we had rain more or less every day, we had been
favored with exceptionally fine weather. During the last seven or eight
weeks of our trip, only light showers had fallen and we were assured
that the season had been an unusual one for England.

The matter of weather is not of great moment to the motorist in Great
Britain. The roads are not affected in the least, so far as traveling
is concerned, and dashing through the open air in a rain is not an
unpleasant experience. A closed top for the car is rarely necessary.
Plenty of waterproof coats and coverings answer the purpose very well
and the open air is much pleasanter than being cooped up in a closed
vehicle. Rubber tires do not slip on good macadam roads and during our
tour it was necessary to use chains on the wheels only a few times.

Altogether, the experience was worth while; nor was it so expensive as
many have imagined it to be. A party of three or four people with their
own car, if one of them drives, can tour Britain for less than it would
cost to cover the same ground, traveling first-class, by railway train.
As to the comparative satisfaction derived from the two methods of
touring, no comment whatever is needed. Making the trip by motor affords
so many advantages and so many opportunities of seeing the country and
of coming in touch with the people that there is really no other method
that can in any way compare with it.



In closing this desultory record of a summer's motoring in Britain, I
can easily see that a great deal was missed, much of which might have
been included with little or no loss of time had we been well enough
informed in advance. There were cases where we actually passed through
places of real interest only to learn later that we had overlooked
something that might well have engaged our attention. There were other
points, readily accessible from our route, which we omitted because
previously visited by rail; and though many of these places we should
have been glad to see again, our limited time forbade. In order to get
all that should be gotten out of a five-thousand-mile tour by motor car,
one would have to be familiar indeed with England's history and
traditions, as well as conversant with her literature. There is little
opportunity for studying hand-books as one goes along. A few weeks of
preparation, of well selected reading and the study of road-books and
maps would make such a tour doubly valuable in saving time and in an
intelligent understanding of the country and the places worth seeing.
What one should have done he will know far better after the trip is
over, and the main excuse for this modest record is that it may supply
in popular form some data from the experience of one who has been over
part of the ground, while the superb illustrations of the volume will
give a far better idea of what awaits the tourist than the mere written

Among the places in which our time was too short is Canterbury. Another
day would have given us a chance to see more of that ancient town, and a
side trip of thirty miles would have taken us to Sandwich, Margate and
Reculvers. We had expected to come a second time to Canterbury and to
visit these three points then, but were unable to carry out our plan.
Sandwich was at one time an important seaport, but lost its position
from the same cause that affected so many of the south coast towns--the
receding of the sea. It contains many of the richest bits of mediaeval
architecture in England, and a few hours in its quaint streets would
have been well repaid. Reculvers, or ancient Regulbium, was a Roman city
that was destroyed by the encroachments of the sea. Here is one of the
oldest and strangest of the ruined churches in England, now standing on
the verge of the ocean, which still continues to advance with a prospect
of ultimately wiping out the little village.

[Illustration: A BIT OF OLD ENGLAND.

From Water Color by Anderson.]

On our trip to Manchester we passed within two or three miles of
Knutsford, the delightful old town selected by Mrs. Gaskell as the scene
of her story, "Granford." Had we known of this at the time, a short
detour would have taken us through its quaint streets.

The Isle of Wight is immediately across the strait from Southampton, and
while a motor car could be transported by steamer to traverse its fifty
or sixty miles of main road, this is not very often done. It would
require one or two days to visit the interesting points in the island,
among which are Carisbrooke Castle, where King Charles I was confined as
a prisoner; Osborne House, formerly a royal residence but presented to
the nation by King Edward; and Freshwater, the home where the poet
Tennyson lived for many years.

Sherborne and Tewkesbury were both only a few miles off our route, and
had we planned rightly we could have visited with very little loss of
time these two interesting towns with their great abbey churches, which
rank in size and importance with many of the cathedrals.

Ten miles from Penzance would have brought us to Lands End--the extreme
southwestern point of England, abounding in wild and beautiful
ocean-shore scenery, but the story of dangerous hills deterred us,
though we afterwards regretted our decision. Nor could we pass again as
we did at Camelford in Cornwall within five miles of King Arthur's
Tintagel without seeing this solitary and wonderfully romantic ruin,
with the majestic--even awe-inspiring--scenery around it.

Perhaps the most interesting trip which we missed, but which would have
required more time than we could give, was a two or three days' run
through the extreme south of Wales. It is only thirty miles from
Monmouth to Cardiff, a coal-mining metropolis, itself of little
interest, but with many places worth visiting in its immediate vicinity.
Cardiff Castle, too, is one of the best known of the Welsh ruins, and
here Henry I confined his elder brother Robert for twenty years while he
himself, in reality a usurper, held the English throne. Ten miles north
of Cardiff is the rude and inaccessible castle of Caerphilly, which is
reckoned the most extensive ruin in the Kingdom.

Following the coast road for one hundred miles, one comes to the ancient
town of St. Davids, at the extreme southwestern point of Wales. Here in
the Middle Ages was a city of considerable size, a great resort of
pilgrims to St. David's shrine, William the Conqueror being one of
these. The modern St. Davids is a mere village, and its chief attraction
is its grand cathedral and the ruins of the once gorgeous episcopal
palace. The cathedral, built in the Tenth Century, is curiously
situated in a deep dell, and only the great tower is visible from the

The return trip from St. Davids would best be made over the same road to
Carmarthen, then taking the road northward to Llandovery, where is
located one of the ruins of what was once the greatest abbey in Southern
Wales. From this point the road direct to Abergavenny is a good one and
passes through much of the picturesque hill country of Wales.

From Bangor in North Wales it is about twenty miles to Holyhead, from
which point the car could easily be transferred to Ireland in two or
three hours. This would mean an additional two weeks to the tour, and no
doubt more time could pleasantly be spent in the Emerald Isle. The roads
in Ireland are far from equal to those of England or Scotland, but the
scenery, especially on the coast, is even lovelier, and the points of
interest quite as numerous.

The Isle of Man, in the Irish Channel, is a famous resort of motorists,
and many of the speed and reliability contests have been held there. It
is about the only spot in the world where no speed limit is imposed, the
inhabitants of the island recognizing the financial advantage which they
reap from the numerous motorists. There are about fifty or sixty miles
of road in the island said to be as fine as any in the world. The island
is charming and interesting, with ruins and relics dating from the time
it was an independent kingdom. The two days which would have to be
given it would be well spent.

No one who had not visited it before would miss the Lake District in the
north of England. A former trip through this section by coach caused us
to omit it from our tour, though we would gladly have seen this
delightful country a second time. One could depart from the main highway
from Lancaster to Carlisle at Kendall and in a single day visit most of
the haunts of Ruskin, Coleridge, Wordsworth and Southey, whose names are
always associated with the English lakes. Many steep hills would be
encountered, but none that would present great difficulty to a
moderate-powered motor. It would be much better, however, if two or
three days could be given to the Lakes, and this time might also include
Furness Abbey and Lanercost Priory. Volumes have been written of the
English lakes, but with all the vivid pen-pictures that have been drawn
one will hardly be prepared for the beauty of the reality.

The Peak District in Derbyshire we omitted for the same reason--a
previous visit. At Nottingham we were within ten or fifteen miles of
this section, and by following a splendid road could have reached
Rowsley Station, with its quaint inn, near Chatsworth House and Haddon
Hall. No one who makes any pretense of seeing England will miss either
of these places. Haddon Hall is said to be the most perfect of the
baronial mansion houses now to be found in England. It is situated in a
wonderfully picturesque position, on a rocky bluff overlooking the River
Wye. The manor was originally given by the Conqueror to Peveril of the
Peak, the hero of Scott's novel. The mansion is chiefly famous for its
connection with Dorothy Vernon, who married the son of the Earl of
Rutland in the time of Queen Elizabeth, the property thus passing to the
Rutland family, who are still the owners. The mansion is approached by a
small bridge crossing the river, whence one enters under a lofty archway
the main courtyard. In this beautiful quadrangle, one of the most
interesting features is the chapel at the southwest corner. This is one
of the oldest portions of the structure. Almost opposite is the
magnificent porch and bay-window leading into the great hall. This is
exactly as it was in the days of the Vernons, and its table, at which
the lord of the feast sat, its huge fireplace, timber roof and minstrel
gallery are quite unaltered. It has recently been announced that the
Duke of Rutland will make repairs to this old place and occupy it as one
of his residences, closing Belvoir Castle, his present home, on account
of the great expense of maintaining it.

Four or five miles from Haddon Hall is Chatsworth House, the splendid
country seat of the Duke of Devonshire. This was built over a hundred
years ago and is as fine an example of the modern English mansion as
Haddon Hall is of the more ancient. It is a great building in the
Georgian style, rather plain from the outside, but the interior is
furnished in great splendor. It is filled with objects of art presented
to the family at various times, some of them representing gifts from
nearly every crowned head in Europe during the last hundred years. Its
galleries contain representative works of the greatest ancient and
modern artists. Even more charming than the mansion itself are its
gardens and grounds. Nowhere in England are these surpassed. The
mansion, with its grounds, is open daily to the public without charge,
and we were told that in some instances the number of visitors reaches
one thousand in a single day. As I noted elsewhere, the Duke of
Devonshire owns numerous other palaces and ruins, all of which are open
to the public without charge--a fine example of the spirit of many of
the English nobility who decline to make commercial enterprises of their
historic possessions.

In this immediate vicinity is Buxton, another of the English watering
places famous for mineral springs. The neighborhood is most romantic,
with towering cliffs, strange caverns, leaping cataracts and wooded
valleys. However, the section abounds in very steep hills, dangerous to
the most powerful motor.

In Yorkshire we missed much, chiefly on account of lack of time. A
single day's journey would have taken us over a fine road to
Scarborough, an ancient town which has become a modern seacoast resort,
and to Whitby, with one of the finest abbey ruins in the shire, as well
as to numerous other interesting places between. Barnard Castle, lying
just across the western boundary of Yorkshire, was only a few miles off
the road from Darlington, and would have been well worth a visit. These
are only a few of the many places which might be seen to advantage if
one could give at least a week to Yorkshire.

From Norwich an hour or two would have taken us to Yarmouth through the
series of beautiful lakes known as the Norfolk Broads. Yarmouth is an
ancient town with many points of interest and at present noted
principally for its fisheries.

On the road to Colchester we might easily have visited Bury St. Edmunds,
and coming out of Colchester, only seven miles away is the imposing ruin
of the unfinished mansion of the Marneys, which its builder hoped to
make the most magnificent private residence in the Kingdom. The death of
Lord Marney and his son brought the project to an end and for several
hundred years this vast ruin has stood as a monument to their
unfulfilled hopes.

It may seem that as Americans we were rather unpatriotic to pass within
a few miles of the ancestral country of the Washingtons without visiting
it, but such was the case. It is not given much space in the guide-books
and it came to us only as an afterthought. It was but five or six miles
from Northampton, through which we passed. In the old church at Brington
is the tomb of George Washington's great-great-great-grandfather and
also one of the houses which was occupied by his relatives. In the same
section is Sulgrave Manor, the home of the Washingtons for several
generations, which still has over its front doorway the Washington
coat-of-arms. In the same vicinity and near the farmhouse where George
Eliot was born is Nuneaton, a place where she spent much of her life and
to which numerous references are made in her novels.

In Scotland we also missed much, but very little that we could have
reached without consuming considerably more time. A day's trip north of
Edinburgh, across the Firth of Forth into Fife, would have enabled us to
visit Loch Leven and its castle, where Queen Mary was held prisoner and
was rescued by young Douglas, whom she afterward unfortunately married.
Had we started two or three hours earlier on our trip to Abbottsford and
Melrose, we could easily have reached Jedburgh and Kelso, at each of
which there are interesting abbey ruins. Of course it would have been
a fine thing to go to the extreme northern point of Scotland, known as
John O' Groats, but this, at the rate we traveled, would have consumed
two or three days. The country is not specially interesting and has few
historical associations. Tourists make this trip chiefly to be able to
say they have covered the Kingdom from Lands End to John O' Groats.


From Painting by D. Sherrin.]

I have said little of the larger cities--we did not stop long in any of
these. The chief delight of motoring in Britain is seeing the country
and the out-of-the-way places. In the cities, where one may spend days
and where the train service and other methods of transportation in the
place and its suburbs are practically unlimited, one can ill afford to
linger with his car in the garage much of the time. Of London I have
already spoken. Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Bristol, Birmingham,
Edinburgh and Glasgow are examples to my point. We had visited nearly
all of these by rail, but in again planning a tour by car I should not
stop at such places for any length of time and should avoid passing
through them whenever practicable.

Of course I do not pretend in the few suggestions I have made in this
chapter to have named a fraction of the points of interest that we did
not visit--only the ones which appealed to me most when I had become
more familiar with Britain. I only offer these few comments to show how
much more might have been compassed in the space of a week or two,
leaving out Ireland, John O' Groats, and the Isles of Wight and Man. One
week would have given ample time for us to include the places I have
enumerated. In planning a tour, individual taste must be a large
element. What will please one may not appeal so strongly to another.
Still, I am sure that the greater part of the route which we covered and
which I have tried to outline will interest anyone who cares enough to
give the time and money necessary to tour Britain.




Abbottsford, 174-175, 177.

Aberdeen, 161-164.

Abergavenny, 303.

Aberyswith, 125-126.

Addison, Jos., 88.

Aldworth, 276.

Alfred the Great, 21, 84-85, 259, 263.

Alloway, 148-140.

Alnwick, 186-187.

Altrincham, 56.

Amesbury, 88.

Anderida, 280.

Andre, Major, 48.

Anne of Cleves, 279.

Anne, Queen, 261.

Arbroath, 168.

Arthur, King, 109, 302.

Arthur, Prince, 76.

Arundel, 276-277.

Ashow Church, 78.

Austen, Jane, 84.

Awe, Loch, 151, 157.

Ayr, 148-149.


Bamborough, 183-185.

Banbury, 78.

Bangor, 134.

Bannockburn, 171.

Barden Tower, 51.

"Barnaby Rudge," 18-20.

Barnard Castle, 307.

Barnsley, 55.

Bath, 110-111.

Battle, 281.

Bawtry, 206.

Bedford, 233.

Belvoir Castle, 227-228.

Berwick-on-Tweed, 182-183.

Bettws-y-Coed, 132.

Blandford, 89.

Blenheim, 260-262.

Bodiam Castle, 284-286.

Bodleian Library, 259.

Boleyn, Anne, 267.

Bolton Abbey, 51.

Boston, 214-216.

Bottisford, 228-229.

Bradley, A.G., 68-69.

Braemar, 163.

Brightholme, 278.

Brighton, 277-278.

"Brig O' Doon," 148.

Brington, 308.

Brixham, 93-94.

Bruce, 165, 170.

Buildwas Abbey, 64.

Bull Hotel, Dartford, 27-28.

Bunyan, John, 233.

Burnham Thorpe, 217.

Burns, Robt., 143-149.

Burslem, 49.

Bury St. Edmunds, 238, 307.

Butler, Dr., 265.

Buxton, 306.

Bylands Abbey, 201.

Byron, Lord, 230, 247-248.


Caerlaverock Castle, 144-145.

Caerphilly, 302.

Caledonian Canal, 157.

Cambridge, 233-234, 237, 240-241.

Cambuskenneth Abbey, 171.

Camelford, 104.

Canterbury, 26-27, 33-39, 300.

Canute, 84.

Cardiff, 302.

Carisbrooke Castle, 301.

Carlisle, 141-143.

Carlyle, Thos., 145.

Carmarthen, 303.

Carnarvon, 132-134.

Castle Hotel, New Castle-Under-Lyme, 49.

Catherine of Aragon, 224.

Cawdor Castle, 161.

Cerne Abbas, 89-90.

Cerrig-y-Druidion, 130-132.

Chalfont St. Giles, 249-251.

Charlecote, 77.

Charles I, 61, 63, 82, 117, 120-121, 227, 301.

Charles II, 165.

Charles the Pretender, 161, 171-172.

Chatham, 33.

Chatsworth House, 305-306.

Chaucer, 27, 262.

Chawton, 82.

Chelmsford, 243.

Cheltenham, 112.

Chepstow, 119-120.

Chester, 8, 58-61, 137.

Chichester, 272-273.

Chigwell, 18-20.

Chippenham, 111.

Chipping-Ongar, 17-18, 243-244.

Christchurch, 89.

Cirencester, 112.

Claverhouse, 165.

Clifford Castle, 124.

Clyde Shipyards, 149-150.

Cobbett, Wm., 81.

Cobden, Richard, 274.

Colchester, 241-244.

Coleridge, 304.

Conway Castle, 134-136.

Conway River, 132.

Coventry, 45-46.

Cowdray Mansion, 274.

Cowper, Wm., 221, 232.

Coxwold, 198, 200, 202.

Crayon, Geoffrey, 1.

Crianlarich, 151.

Cromwell, Oliver, 139, 235-240, 244, 263, 265.

Crowland, 222-223.

Culloden Moor, 161.


Dalmally, 157.

Darling, Grace, 185.

Darnley, 180.

Dartford, 27-29.

Dartmoor, 106.

Dartmouth, 94.

Dart, River, 94.

Darwin, Charles, 63, 288-289.

Dereham, 221.

Devonport, 96.

Dickens, 18-20, 29-32, 140.

Dinas Mowddwy, 126.

Dochart, River, 158.

Doncaster, 206.

Dorchester, 89.

Downe, 288-289.

Drumlanrigh Castle, 147.

Dryburgh Abbey, 174-176.

Dukeries, 206-207.

Dumbarton, 150.

Dumfries, 144-146.

Dunbar, 180.

Dunblane, 170.

Duncan, 161.

Dundee, 168-169.

Dunnottar Castle, 164-167.

Dunollie Castle, 152.

Dunstafnage Castle, 154-155.

Durham, 187-189.


Earl's Colne, 242.

Easby Abbey, 193-194.

Eaton Hall, 60.

Eboracum, 191.

Ecclefechan, 145.

Edgeware, 23.

Edgeworth, Maria, 48.

Edinburgh, 174, 178-179.

Edward the Confessor, 113.

Edward I, 21, 133, 134.

Edward II, 133.

Edward III, 231.

Elgin, 161-162.

Eliot, George, 78, 274-276, 308.

Elizabeth, Queen, 219, 226, 262, 292, 294, 305.

Ellisland Farm, 146.

Elstow, 233.

Ely, 221, 237-239.

Epping Forest, 16-17.

Ethelwulf, King, 84.

Eton College, 254-255.

Eversley, 266.

Exeter, 91-92, 107.


Fairfax, Gen., 121, 198.

Falkirk, 172.

Falstaff, Sir John, 30.

Farnham, 81.

Farringford, 276.

Fast Castle, 181-182.

Feathers Hotel, Ludlow, 69-70.

Fife, 308.

Forres, 161.

Fotheringhay, 225-227.

Fountains Abbey, 54, 196.

Fox, George, 243.

Franklin, Benjamin, 85-86.

Freshwater, 301.

Frogmore Park, 255.

Furness Abbey, 304.


Gad's Hill, 29-32.

Galashiels, 178.

Gaskell, Mrs., 301.

Gaveston, Piers, 53.

George III, 256.

Glasgow, 149.

Glastonbury, 108-109.

Gloucester, 112-113.

Grandtully Castle, 158.

Grantham, 227.

Gray, Thos., 254.

Great North Road, 191, 206.

Greenstead Church, 243.

Greenwich, 27.

Grey Friars Church, 193.

Guildford, 81.

Guinevere, Queen, 109.


Haddon Hall, 304-305.

Hadley Church, Monken Hadley, 21-22.

Hampton Court Palace, 12-13.

Handel, 23-24.

Hanley, 49.

Haredale Hall, 54.

Harold, King, 20, 281.

Harrogate, 52, 54.

Harrow-on-the-Hill, 247, 248.

Haselmere, 274-276.

Hastings, Battle of, 20.

Hatfield House, 15.

Hathaway, Anne, 76.

Haverhill, 241.

Hay, 124.

Heddingham, 242.

Helmsley, 198-199.

Henley-on-Thames, 256.

Henry I, 267, 302.

Henry II, 53, 263.

Henry V, 117-118.

Henry VII, 107, 279.

Henry VIII, 43, 76, 109, 194, 197, 217-218, 224, 267, 279.

Hereford, 122-124.

Hindhead District, 276.

Holwood House, 288.

Holyhead, 303.

Holyhead Road, 43-44.

Huntingdon, 237, 239-240.

Huntly, 161.


Ilkley Station, 51.

Inverness, 159-161.

Inverurie, 162.

Iona, 153-154.

Ireland, 303.

Irish Sea, 141.

Isle of Man, 141, 303.

Isle of Wight, 276, 301.


James I, 171, 182, 224, 291.

James II, 63.

James IV, 165.

Jedburgh, 177, 308.

Jeffreys, Judge, 63.

John, King, 76, 229, 267.

John O' Groats, 161, 308.

Johnson, Dr. Samuel, 48.

Jordans, 243, 250-253.


Keith, 161.

Kelso, 177, 308.

Kenilworth, 77.

Kilchurn Castle, 151, 157.

Killiekrankie, Pass of, 160.

Kilmarnock, 149.

Kingsley, Chas. 266.

King's Lynn, 216.

Kingston-on-Thames, 80.

Kingsway, London, 296-297.

Kinneff, 166.

Kinniard House, 158.

Knaresborough, 52-54.

Knole House, 290-292.

Knutsford, 301.


Lake District, 304.

Lammermoor, 180-181.

Lancaster, 140-141.

Land's End, 301.

Lanercost Priory, 304.

Launceston, 104-106.

Lea, River, 21.

Leamington, 77-78.

Leeds, 50-52.

Leeds Castle, 39.

Leicester, 231.

Leven, Loch, 308.

Lewes, 278-279.

Lichfield, 48.

Lincluden Abbey, 146.

Lincoln, 209-210.

Linlithgow, 171, 172.

Livingstone, David, 245.

Llanberis, Pass of, 132.

Llandovery, 303.

Llangollen, 127-129.

Lockyer, Sir Norman, 88.

Lomond, Loch, 150.

London, 11-25, 39-40, 80, 245-246, 296-297.

London Tower, 72.

Ludlow, 66-74.

Lutterworth, 231-232.

Lyndhurst, 88-89.


McCaig's Tower, 152-153.

Macbeth, 160, 161.

Magdalen College, Oxford, 257-258.

Maidstone, 32, 39.

Malmesbury, 111-112.

Manchester, 50, 54, 236.

Marazion, 103.

Margate, 300.

Martin, Henry, 120.

Mary, Queen, 262.

Mary Queen of Scots, 170-173, 180, 224, 225-227, 308.

Mauchline, 148.

Maxstoke Castle, 78.

Mayflower, The, 96, 206.

Melrose Abbey, 174-175, 177.

Micklegate Bar, York, 203.

Midhurst, 274.

Millston, 88.

Milton, John, 72, 249-250.

Monken Hadley, 21-23.

Monmouth, 114-118.

Monnow River, 117.

Montfort, Simon de, 279.

Montrose, 167.

Much Wenlock, 64-65.

Mull, Sound of, 154.


Nairn, 161.

Nelson, Admiral, 216-217.

Netley, 267-269.

Newark, 229.

Newcastle-on-Tyne, 187.

New Castle-Under-Lyme, 49.

New College, Oxford, 258.

New Forest, 88-89.

Newlyn, 100-101.

Newstead Abbey, 207-208.

Newton, Sir Isaac, 227.

Nidd, River, 53.

Nith, Valley, 146.

Norfolk Broads, 307.

Northampton, 232.

Norwich, 215-220.

Nottingham, 230-231.

Nuneaton, 46-47, 78, 308.


Oban, 151-155.

Offham, 286-287.

Old Kent Road, 26-27.

Olney, 232-233.

Osborne House, 301.

Oswestry, 127.

Ouse, River, 239.

Oxford, 234, 256-259.


Parliamentary Army, 61, 82, 121-122, 143, 204, 228, 230, 243, 259.

Peak District, 304.

Peele, 248.

Penistone, 55.

Penn, Wm., 20, 251, 253.

Penrith, 141.

Penshurst Place, 67, 292-294.

Penzance, 98-100.

Perth, 169-170.

Peterborough, 223-225.

Petergate, The, York, 205.

Pevensey, 280-281.

Pilgrim Fathers, 96, 206, 214-215, 241.

Pitlochry, 159.

Pitt, Wm., 288.

Plymouth, 96-97.

Preston, 137, 139.


Quebec House, 287-288.


Raglan, 120-121.

Raikes, Robt., 113.

Reading, 265.

Reculvers, 300.

Regulbium, 300.

Retford, 206.

Rhodes, Cecil, 258.

Richard III, 72, 107.

Richmond, 192-194.

Rievaulx Abbey, 199-200.

Ripon, 54, 195-197.

Rochester, 29, 32-33.

Ross, 113-114.

Roundheads, 48, 84, 92.

Rowsley, 304.

Rowton Moor, 61.

Royal Porcelain Works, Worcester, 74-75.

Rugby, 78.

Runnymede, 15.

Ruskin, 304.

Rye, 282-283.

Rye House, Broxborne, 15.


St. Albans, 42-43.

St. Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury, 38.

St. Botolph's Church, 213-214.

St. Columba, 153-154.

St. Cuthbert, 188.

St. Davids, 302.

St. Edmund the Martyr, 244.

St. Ives, 101-103, 236-239.

St. John's Hospital, 39.

St. Joseph of Arimathea, 108.

St. Martin's, Canterbury, 38.

St. Mary's Abbey, York, 204.

St. Mary's Church, Lancaster, 140-141.

St. Mary's Church, Shrewsbury, 63.

St. Michael's Church, Dumfries, 144.

St. Michael's Mount, 103.

St. Steven's Church, Launceston, 105-106.

St. William of Perth, 33.

Salisbury, 86-87.

Sandquhar, 148.

Sandringham Palace, 216.

Sandwich, 300.

Saracen's Head, Cerrig-y-Druidion, 130-132.

Scarborough, 307.

Scott, Gilbert, 219.

Scott, Sir Walter, 47, 142, 144, 151, 155, 158, 167, 173-177, 181, 199,
                   262, 305.

Selborne, 82.

Severn, River, 61, 64-65, 119-120.

Shakespeare, 76-77, 107.

Shambles, The, York, 205.

Sherborne, 301.

Sheridan, 248.

Shipley, Dr., 86.

Shipton, Mother, 53-54.

Shottermill, 275.

Shrewsbury, 61-63, 65.

Sidney, Henry, 72.

Sidney, Sir Philip, 63, 72, 292-294.

Smith, Prof. Goldwin, 3, 235.

Snowdon, Mt., 132.

Solway Tide, 143.

Somersby, 211-213.

Southampton, 267.

Southey, 168, 304.

Southwell, 230.

Staffa, 153.

Stalybridge, 56.

Stanley, Dean, 38.

Sterne, Laurence, 198-200.

Stevenson, Robert Louis, 158.

Stirling, 170-171.

Strid, The, 51.

Stockport, 56.

Stoke-on-Trent, 49.

Stoke Poges, 254.

Stokesay, 66-67.

Stonehaven, 167.

Stonehenge, 87-88.

Stonehouse, 96.

Stoneleigh Abbey, 78.

Story, 232.

Stratford-on-Avon, 1-3, 76-77.

Sulgrave Manor, 308.

Swale River, 193, 194.


Tamworth, 47.

Tay, Loch, 158.

Tay, River, 158, 169.

Taymouth Castle, 158.

Temple Bar, 21.

Tennyson, 46, 124, 209, 211-213, 274, 276, 301.

Tewkesbury, 301.

Thackeray, 21-23, 295.

Thames River, 256.

Tintagel Castle, 104, 302.

Tintern, 118-119.

Toplady, Rev. Augustus, 81.

Torquay, 92-93.

Trinity Church, Stratford, 2.

Trollope, Anthony, 23.

Trosachs, 151.

Truro, 97-98, 104.

Tunbridge Wells, 284, 286, 295.

Tweed River, 175-176.

Twyford, 85.


Uriconium, 63.


Vale Crucis Abbey, 128.

Vernon House, Farnham, 82.

Verulamium, 42.

Victoria, Queen, 255.


Waddesdon, 78.

Wakefield, 55.

Wallace, 170, 171.

Walsingham, 217.

Waltham Abbey, 20-21.

Walton, Ike, 84.

Wantage, 259, 263-264.

Warrington, 138-139, 236.

Warwick, 77.

Washington, George, 308.

Wedgewood, Josiah, 49.

Wells, 109.

Welshpool, 127.

Wesley, John, 282.

Westerham, 287-288.

Westminster Abbey, 21, 24, 154, 224.

Wharfdale, 51.

Wharfe River, 51.

Whitby, 307.

Whitchurch, 23.

White, Gilbert, 82.

Whittington, 265.

Wigan, 139.

William the Conqueror, 20, 63, 278-281, 302, 305.

William the Lion, 168.

William of Orange, 93.

William Rufus, 32, 84.

Winchelsea, 282-283.

Winchester, 83-85, 266.

Windsor, 254-255.

Wishing Wells, 217-218.

Wolfe, Gen., 287-288.

Wolvesley Palace, 85.

Woodstock, 262-263.

Woolsthorpe, 227.

Woolwich, 27.

Worcester, 74-76.

Wordsworth, 304.

Wroxeter, 64.

Wyatt, James, 86-87, 122-123.

Wyclif, John, 231-232.

Wye, River, 122, 125.

Wyndcliffe, 119.


Yarmouth, 307.

Yeovil, 90.

York, 8, 191, 197-198, 203-205.

[Illustration: MAP OF SCOTLAND.]

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