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Title: Impressions of America - During The Years 1833, 1834, and 1835. In Two Volumes, Volume II.
Author: Power, Tyrone, 1795-1841
Language: English
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IMPRESSIONS OF AMERICA.

VOL. II.

LONDON:

PRINTED BY SAMUEL BENTLEY,

Dorset Street, Fleet Street.


[Illustration: GROUP OF INDIANS NEAR NIAGARA.
Drawn & Etched by A. Hervieu.]



IMPRESSIONS OF AMERICA,

DURING THE YEARS 1833, 1834, AND 1835.


BY TYRONE POWER, ESQ.

IN TWO VOLUMES.

VOL. II.

LONDON:
RICHARD BENTLEY, NEW BURLINGTON STREET,
Publisher in Ordinary to His Majesty.

1836.



CONTENTS

OF

THE SECOND VOLUME.

                                                         Page
NAHANT                                                      1
THE BALLOON                                                10
Taunton.--Cotton Manufactures.--Pocassett.--Rhode Island._ib._
NEWPORT                                                    22
Rhode Island                                             _ib._
BLOCK ISLAND                                               28
NEW YORK                                                   32
Rockaway.--A Road Adventure.                             _ib._
JOURNAL                                                    40
IMPRESSIONS OF PETERSBURG                                  82
Virginia                                                 _ib._
A Rhapsody                                                 83
Impressions of Petersburg.--The deserted Church.           87
CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA                                 93
Total Eclipse of the Sun                                  102
SAVANNAH                                                  117
COLUMBUS                                                  132
TRAVELLING THROUGH THE CREEK NATION                       140
The Alabama River down to Mobile                         _ib._
JOURNAL                                                   162
NEW ORLEANS                                               171
American Theatre                                         _ib._
French Theatre                                            175
NEW ORLEANS                                               178
Journal                                                  _ib._
The Theatre                                               189
Journal                                                   192
MOBILE                                                    211
NEW ORLEANS                                               227
THE LEVEE MARKET                                          247
JOURNAL RESUMED                                           252
NEW YORK                                                  278
JOURNAL                                                   291
A visit to Quebec, _via_ Lake Champlan and Montreal      _ib._
The Sault au Recollect                                    305
GENERAL IMPRESSIONS OF THE COUNTRY AND OF THE
  AMERICAN PEOPLE                                         339
Adieu                                                     354
APPENDIX                                                  357



IMPRESSIONS OF AMERICA.



NAHANT.


This rocky peninsula is truly a very wild and unworldlike little
territory, jutting boldly out as it does into the mighty bay of
Massachusetts, and commanding a view of its whole extent, from Cape Cod
to Cape Anne, together with the many islands, towns, and villages
scattered along the coast; whilst in front spreads out the Atlantic
Ocean.

To sit within the upper gallery of this house upon the cliff, and watch
the rising moon fling her golden bridge from the far horizon's edge,
until it seems to rest upon the beach below, is a sight which would be
worth something in a poet or a painter's eyes.

I never, either in the East or in the Mediterranean, beheld anything
exceed in colour the glory of these evening skies, or their depth by
night. Round about, near to the edge of the cliffs, are scattered a
number of dwellings, built in the style of the southern cottage, having
low projecting eaves covering a broad gallery which usually encircles
the building: these are objects upon which the eye is pleased to rest
when the moon deepens their shadows on the barren rock.

One or two of the highest and most conspicuous points, whether viewed
from the land or the sea, have been very properly selected for
buildings, whose uses, however humble, admitted of classic form. Beneath
the roof of a temple to Minerva, built upon the extreme eastern point of
the lofty headland, may be found the billiard-table of the hotel; lower
down, the little edifice containing a range of baths is entered by a
Doric portico. The proportions of these buildings are in good taste; the
chaste cold moon clothes them in grace and beauty; and for the material,
what matters it, when, by her light, painted pine may be fancied Parian
marble! The cliff itself is a very Leucadia, and as well fitted for a
leap as love-sick heart could seek: but there are no Sapphos now-a-days;
the head of Nahant is likely to remain un-be-rhymed.

A little way to the northward lies a small steep island, between which
and the main land the "sarpint" _par excellence_ has been seen more than
once rushing along at the rate of a steamboat, with a horned face
uplifted some fifty feet above the waves, and a beard blowing about his
ears like the tail of a comet.

This account I had from more than one credulous witness: certain it is,
if Sarpint be fond of fish, he is no bad judge in selecting this as a
residence; for about this same island there are abundance and variety,
both to be met with at all hours, as I can testify, having sat in a
punt, bearing a wary eye for hours at a stretch, and catching all sorts
of things except a sight of the "sarpint."

The nights here are indeed delicious, calm and cool, with air as soft as
velvet; during the day, for about two hours after meridian, owing to the
absence of all shade without, one is compelled, although the sea-breeze
does its best, to keep the house, or else get outside the bay of Boston,
away from the land: this I was afforded frequent opportunities of
doing, in a very pretty schooner-yacht called the Sylph, which Mr.
F----s had down here. She was about eighty tons burthen, capitally
appointed, and with rare qualities as a sea-boat; in her I had the
happiness to pass many days, when the poor people on shore were pitiably
grilled, cruising for codfish, and dishing them up into a sort of soup
called chowder; this formed, in fact, the one great object of my present
life, and I availed myself of every occasion to pursue it.

One of my pleasantest cruises was made with Captain H----d, in an armed
schooner called the Hamilton, attached to the United States' revenue
service. We ran down the coast as far as Portsmouth, and on our return
passed a night within the snugly enclosed harbour of Marblehead; into
which a couple of our cruisers chased an American frigate during the
last war, and threatened to fetch her out again, but thought better of
it, after putting the natives to a great deal of inconvenience through
their anxiety to provide a suitable welcome for the strangers.

Here we landed, and looked about the place: the air was somewhat fishy,
but, judging by the ruddy complexions of the people, must be
exceedingly salubrious. It is not unlike some of the French
fishing-towns on the coast of Normandy, and has an old look that pleased
me much. The place is said to have been originally settled by a colony
of fishers from Guernsey, whose descendants are found still to retain
many of the customs of the islands, and some words of the _patois_ in
use there.

The population is famous for industry, and for the summary mode with
which they dispense justice amongst themselves on points of local polity
affecting the general weal. One instance was fresh enough in memory to
be talked of still. A townsman, returning from the Banks with a cargo,
passed a vessel in a sinking state, turning a blind eye to their
repeated anxious signals. Contrary to all expectation, the crippled
bark, after being given up as lost, reached the harbour, and the conduct
of the hard-hearted skipper was made public. He was seized _instanter_,
triced up, served out with a dozen or two well told, covered with tar,
clothed in feathers, and in this plight was carted about the boundaries
of the township, having a label hung about his neck that described his
crime and sentence in good set rhymes, which ran as follows:


     "This here's old John Hort,
     That for his hard heart
     Is tar-ed and feather-ed,
     And carry-ed in this cart."


This occurs to me as being the best practicable illustration of
"poetical justice" I ever heard of, and an example not likely to be lost
upon a maritime people.

It was about dusk when we landed; and I was at first greatly surprised
by the numbers of pretty and neatly-dressed women we encountered
strolling about, or chatting together in groups, wholly unattended by
the other sex. I was quickly reminded, however, that at this season of
the year the husbands, lovers, and sons of the community are mostly
absent in their vessels fishing on the banks of Newfoundland, and not
returnable under ten or twelve weeks.

I cannot help observing that it does infinite credit to the moderation
of these _citoyennes_ that they forbear from taking the sovereign rule
into their own hands at these times, since assuredly they possess the
power of numbers to enforce submission, were the resident housekeepers
hardy enough to offer resistance.

Early on the morning of next day the Hamilton was once more under weigh;
we beat along the coast for some distance, then got before the wind,
and, after peeping into the harbours of Salem and Gloucester, bore up
for Nahant: when yet distant some five miles from our destined port, the
wind fell at once start-calm, without much promise of a breeze till
evening; a light gig, however, and four stout hands, soon set us on
shore within the shadow of the temple of Minerva, and concluded a very
pleasant cruise.

A steam-boat daily plies between this place and Boston: many persons
come down here for an hour or two, and return on the same evening; a
game of nine-pins and a dinner of fine fish, with advantages of fresh
air and a temperature comparatively cool, being the inducements.

The resident families are not numerous, but appear to mix sociably; and,
what with a drive or ride upon the fine beach between this and Lynn, a
sail in the harbour, or a ramble amongst the rude crags by which the
place is environed, find means diversified enough of killing the enemy.
For my part, I am pleased with the place; and were it not that my
incarnate foes have chosen, contrary to established custom, to make an
inroad here, my satisfaction would be complete. But, as it is, they have
at length once more prevailed over my patience: with my eyes nearly
swollen up and my hands miserably blistered, I find further resistance
too painful, therefore have decided upon flight after a fortnight's
residence.

One of the preparations for my comfort, at the dinner-table of Mr.
P----s, with whose amiable family I have latterly dined, was a cup of
rose-water and _eau de Cologne_, with patches of the rice paper of
China, wherewith to allay the intolerable itching that attends the
puncture of these winged leeches, whose voracity is incredible. I have
at times caught a villain in the act, and watched with patience until
from one of the veins of the hand he had drunk blood enough to blow out
his little carcase to the shape of a tennis-ball, when he would poise
himself upon his long legs, and, spreading his wings, make an effort to
rise, but in vain; bloated and unwieldy, his wings refused to sustain
him; his usual activity was gone, and there he stood disgustingly
helpless, incapacitated by sheer gluttony.

In the first week of August I bade adieu to the rocks of Nahant, and for
the last time drove over the beach to Lynn. Not having received any
letters during my residence on the little peninsula--which, it appears,
is out of the circuit of the post-office department--I called at the
establishment of Lynn to make inquiry whether or no any letters had been
forwarded here: the young man in attendance "guessed" that there had
been one or two, maybe; but if there was, the stage-driver had had them.
Now there being a feud between the said driver and the hotel I lodged
in, my ever getting my letters appears a doubtful matter: however, "I
guess" I'll try.



THE BALLOON.


TAUNTON.--COTTON MANUFACTURES.--POCASSETT.--RHODE ISLAND.


On arriving at Boston, I found the whole city in movement to assist, as
the French say, in the ascent of a balloon, constructed by a Mr. Durant,
already well known as an experienced and intrepid aëronaut.

Purchasing a ticket for the Amphitheatre, a lofty temporary enclosure
with rows of seats running round it, I fell into the crowd, and made my
way across the common at the extremity of which the building in question
was situated.

Although the day was hot and bright, there was a very strong southerly
wind blowing; and rolling away to the north-east, heavy masses of cloud
passed over the sun like snow-drifts, promising a rapid flight for the
balloon.

This common, flanked as it is by the finest residences of the city, the
Bostonians often compare with our Hyde Park. Its surface is broken and
irregular, and on this day the whole area was alive with expectant
gazers; whilst the several lines of streets leading into it were
thronged with hurrying reinforcements.

Selecting a point of vantage, I stood for some time examining the
materials out of which this vast congregation was made up, and I have
never seen a population whose general appearance would endure so close a
scrutiny as well.

I computed that the women outnumbered their less attractive companions
by at least a third: these were all in holiday trim, of course;
invariably well dressed, but commonly having a pretension to taste and
style I have never elsewhere observed so universally prevalent amongst
the same class. The men, both in air and dress, were inferior to their
female friends; so much so that it was difficult to imagine them
belonging to the same order: and this remark, I think, will be found to
apply generally throughout the Union.

It is not difficult to account for this discrepancy: a love of adornment
is natural to women; the general prosperity which prevails here enables
all classes to indulge a taste for dress, whilst the leisure enjoyed by
females gives them facilities for acquiring those little aids by which
gay attire is disposed and set off to the best advantage.

After a time I slowly made my way to the Amphitheatre, presented my
ticket and was admitted within the enclosure, where the arrangements for
the flight were in busy progress.

The inflation was nearly complete, and the huge machine rolled about
from side to side uneasily abiding the restraint which alone prevented
its immediate ascent. It was covered by the netting commonly used; and
about this a number of volunteer assistants clung, restraining the
balloon whilst the aëronaut made all his little arrangements.

The car was a small wicker basket; its cargo consisted of a few bags of
sand for ballast, a barometer, and a couple of small kedges with lines
to match. I had no idea a balloon could be brought up, all standing, by
so small a cable.

I observed Mr. Durant devoted no small attention to the disposition of a
little fellow-passenger he purposed giving a lift to,--a rabbit, muzzled
and netted within a small basket, which, being appended to a parachute,
was destined to come from aloft with the latest lunar intelligence.
Chance, however, robbed the rabbit of the honour of performing this
desperate service; for as the balloon was about to mount, the pipe bound
within the neck of the valve was by some unlucky pull withdrawn, and,
before this could be re-inserted, so much gas had escaped it became
necessary to make a proportionate diminution in the freight. The rabbit
was at once detached from the car, evidently chagrined at the
disappointment, judging by the resistance it made; and several bags of
ballast, together with such stores as might be best spared, were also
discharged.

During all this time, and the bustle consequent upon the accident, Mr.
Durant preserved the most admirable coolness; and, having stopped the
leak, next set about repairing his fractured netting with infinite
quickness and dexterity.

On a second attempt he rose in good style, loudly cheered by the
spectators within the Amphitheatre; but no sooner had he cleared its
wall than the shout of the people arose. Making a stoop almost to their
heads, he discharged the greater part of the remaining ballast, and
mounting again, was borne away to the eastward with great rapidity. The
crowd dispersed immediately, but the whole afternoon was filled by the
accounts constantly arriving of his route, and the probable result.
Report was at an early hour brought that the machine had been seen to
alight in the ocean, about sixteen miles north-east of Nahant, where it
sank in sight of several schooners, taking its pilot down with it. Soon
after it was affirmed that a Portland steamer had rescued the man, and
that the balloon alone was drowned.

In this state of uncertainty the public continued until about nine
o'clock next morning, at which hour Mr. Durant walked into the hall of
the Tremont, where numbers of persons were arguing his probable fate.
After the greeting of his friends was over, he gave a very particular
and interesting account of the peril he had been rescued from. It
appeared that the aërial part of his voyage had terminated, as was
reported, in the Atlantic, some miles off Nahant. Sustained by an
inflated girdle, he hung on to the balloon, and was dragged after it at
no small rate for some time, until a schooner falling in with this
strange sail, gave chase, and overhauled the queer craft.

As soon as the schooner got alongside, a line was flung to the aëronaut,
which he, solicitous to save his machine as well as himself, made fast
to the car, and bade them hoist away: the first hearty pull lifted the
balloon from the waves, when, the wind catching it, up it mounted. The
line to which it was fastened chanced to be the topsail halliards; and
whisk! before a belay could be passed, up flew poor Mr. Durant high over
the vessel's mast; after hanging on for a moment, his strength failed,
and down he plumped from an elevation of some hundred and fifty feet
back into the sea. How deep he dived, or for what length of time he
remained below amongst the codling, he did not say, not having
calculated "the sum of his sensation to a second:" but he readily
"guessed" he would no-how admire such another tumble. His resolution,
however, was nothing abated; for he immediately began to repair his
balloon, and make ready for a new "sail i' the air."

The day following the return of the adventurous balloonist, I left
Boston, accompanied by my friend Captain B----n, taking the land route
for Newport, Rhode Island. Our vehicle was a Jersey waggon, with a
couple of capital ponies; we started early, breakfasted at a good
road-side inn, and reached the town of Taunton about mid-day, where we
halted to let the heat of the sun pass over, and dine.

We took a stroll about the little town, which is famous for its cotton
manufactures; and were pleased to observe every symptom of prosperity
that might be outwardly exhibited,--a well-dressed population, houses
remarkably clean and neat, with much bustle in the streets. The military
mania, which pervades the whole country, we also saw here exhibited in a
way really quite amusing, and by a class to whom it would be well were
it confined, since the display was more becoming in them than in any
less precocious corps of volunteers I remember to have seen.

Whilst standing in the shade of our hotel, the rattle of drums gave note
of some display of war; an event of daily occurrence during this season
of the year throughout these northern States, where playing at soldiers
is one of the choicest amusements. Captain B----n asked a stander-by
what volunteer corps was parading to-day: "Why, I don't rightly know;
but I guess it may be the Taunton Juvenile Democratic Lancers."

Our informant was quite right; for whilst, puzzled by the gravity of the
man, I was considering whether or no he meant a hoax by the style which
he bestowed upon the gallant corps, into the square it marched, with
drums beating and colours flying. The colonel commanding was a smart
little fellow, about twelve years old, dressed in a fancy uniform
jacket, and ample linen cossacks; his regiment mustered about forty rank
and file, independent of a numerous and efficient staff: they were in
full uniform; most of them were about the colonel's age, some of the
cornets perhaps a trifle younger, as became their station; they were
armed with lances; and their motto was most magnanimous, being all about
glory, death, liberty, and democracy. Nothing could be more steady than
the movements of this corps on foot; and, when mounted, I have no doubt
they prove as highly efficient a body as any volunteer lancer cavalry in
the Union.

This could not be called "teaching the young idea how to shoot," since
the corps only bore _l'arme blanche_; but it was highly creditable to
the waggery of the citizens of Taunton, and the most efficient burlesque
upon the volunteer system I had yet seen, although I have encountered
many more elaborately gotten up.

Whilst we were devising some means of visiting the principal
manufactory, a gentleman entered our room, and introducing himself said,
that, having recognised me in the street, he had called to know if he
could be of any service in showing myself and friend the only lions of
the place,--its manufactories.

This act of politeness, which I have found a common occurrence in every
part of the Union, at once relieved us from our difficulty, and off we
set in company with our civil guide to visit the largest depôt of the
place.

The designs of the printed cottons, and the colours, both struck me as
being exceedingly good; in texture, however, I did not conceive any of
the cloths equal to similar stuffs which I had seen at home in
manufacturing towns. One of the partners informed me that they supplied
large quantities of goods to the markets both of India and of South
America: the manufacturer's chief drawback, he said, was found in the
cost of labour; indeed, judging by the dress and neat appearance of the
young women employed here, they must be exceedingly well paid: a
comparison drawn between them and the same class of _employées_ in
England would be singularly in favour of the Taunton "Maids of the
Mill."

The cool time of the day being come, we once more had our active ponies
put to, and away they went as eager to "go a-head" as on our first
start. From this place to Pocassett the ride was lovely: our road lay
high above the river; and, over the luxuriant foliage,
topsail-schooners, large sloops, and other craft, were seen working
their different courses, some bound up, others to Providence, Newport,
or the ports on the coast.

A few miles from the town we came upon a small clearing by the
road-side, evidently in use as a place of burial, and nothing ever
struck me as more neglected; a few decayed boards, with an ill-shaped
falling head-stone or two, were all the prosperous living had bestowed
upon their departed kindred. This neglect of those little decencies with
which, amongst most people, places of sepulture are surrounded, is a
thing of common observance in this part of the Union, and is one of the
reproaches readily noticeable by all strangers. The distinction in this
respect between the North and South is remarkable, and highly creditable
to the feelings of the latter.

By the time we reached Pocassett it was nearly dark, and here we
settled for the night, having driven the ponies fifty odd miles, without
their being in the least distressed, and on a day of no ordinary fervor.

In the evening we attended a book sale, and were much amused by the
volubility and humour of the Yankee salesman, who, with his coat off in
a close crowded room, lectured upon the merits of the authors he
offered, whether poetical, religious, historical, mathematical, or
political, with equal ease and grace, greatly to the edification of the
bystanders. The editions were chiefly American, made to sell, and thus
exceedingly cheap. History and novels appeared to be the literature in
demand; and Walter Scott, Byron, and Bulwer, the names most familiar in
the verbal catalogue galloped over by the "learned gentleman," as our
auctioneer advertisements have it.

The hotel here was remarkably neat and clean; we procured an excellent
cup of tea, and next morning found a most substantial breakfast. After
seeing the population assemble for church, and walking about the banks
of the river, which are very beautiful, we about noon set out for our
final destination, over a villanous, rough road, reached Rhode Island,
by the long substantial causeway connecting it with the main land, and
from this point we had a good turnpike, pulling up at Newport by two
o'clock.

The public dinner was already over, being Sabbath; but the proprietor of
our hotel, a worthy Quaker named Potter, got us a very comfortable meal
at five o'clock, according to our wishes: meantime we rid ourselves of
the accumulated dust of two days, and were comfortably established in
out-quarters, the hotel being full.



NEWPORT.


RHODE ISLAND.


The appearance of Newport is much less imposing, as approached by land,
than when viewed from the noble harbour over which it looks. It consists
of one long line of close-built, narrow streets running parallel with
the water about the base of the steep hill, with many others climbing up
its side. It is indifferently paved, and has a very light soil; so that
upon the least land-breeze the lower town is filled with the dust, which
is blown about in clouds.

Before the revolution, Newport was a city of comparative importance, and
indeed, whilst the importation of slaves continued a part of the trade
of the country, held its own with the most thriving cities of the east
coast, through the great advantage it derived from its easy harbour,
but with the abolition of that traffic came the downfall of its
prosperity; for having no back country by the exportation of whose
produce it might sustain itself, it was speedily deserted by the
mercantile community, and its carrying trade usurped by Providence,
although the latter is situated some thirty miles higher up the river. A
railroad from Boston through the wealthy manufacturing districts might
nevertheless, I should imagine, bestow upon this place the supremacy
which the difficulty of land-carriage alone has withheld from it.

Its great natural advantage to visitors is the charming climate with
which it is favoured, owing to its being on all sides surrounded by deep
water: this is a point that cannot be changed by a decree in Congress,
or removed by order of the Board of Trade, and likely to be of more use
to the place, if made the most of, than the dockyard and depôt which
they seek to establish.

If the English plan was adopted, and small snug cottages built and
furnished for the use of families resorting here, these families would
naturally quit the arks in which they are now congregated, and live each
after the manner of its kind, as all wise animals do; in which case, I
cannot anywhere imagine a more charming abode, or one possessing
superior advantages.

The general aspect of the neighbourhood puts me in mind of the Lothians;
whilst some of the rides amongst the shady lanes, through whose high,
loose hedgerows glimpses were constantly occurring of the sea and rocky
shore, were not unworthy a comparison with portions of that Eden of our
western coast, the Isle of Wight.

The harbour of Newport is of vast extent, easy of entrance, and
perfectly secure from all the winds that blow: its advantages in the
event of a naval war must ultimately render it the chief general depôt
of these States. The government appears quite sensible of the policy of
rendering this noble station perfectly secure in good season: a series
of defences, of first-rate importance, are in a course of erection
which, when completed, it is supposed will render the harbour
impregnable to any attempt from the sea. To Fort Adams, the rough-work
of which is completed, I paid more than one visit; and nothing can be
more substantially put together.

The necessity of a dockyard of the first order being established at this
point appears to have been long and warmly pressed upon the
administration by all naval men who have considered the subject: want of
money, the great stumbling-block of a cheap government, has hitherto
prevented the plan being carried into execution; but it is imagined that
this will not be delayed much longer, after the defences are completed.
Since the decease of the gallant Perry, this has ceased to be a naval
station; during the last years of his life he held a command here, which
was almost nominal.

I visited the place where Perry lies buried beneath a simple obelisk of
granite: few heroes appear to have lived so universally loved as was the
Conqueror of the Lakes. His short but brilliant career, added to his
youth and remarkable personal beauty, made him the idol of the people;
whilst his generous disposition and winning manners rendered him the
delight of his friends. I never heard the name of this officer mentioned
without eulogium, mingled with regret for his premature death.

My condition here is enviable enough: I have a pleasant room, with a
fig-tree growing before my window, beneath which Captain B----n and
myself breakfast daily, well shaded from sun and dust; not a musquito
disputes possession with us; and the dinner-table at the "Pottery" is
well served enough, and graced by several very handsome women.

Here is another large hotel near to us, which, from its high bare walls
and numerous windows, we have named the "Factory;" and a sort of rivalry
may be said to exist between the "Pottery girls" and those of this
"Factory." The amusements consist of scandal, bathing, riding, with an
occasional boating party, but the men are not enterprising, otherwise
the facilities for little pic-nics and country excursions abound. The
ladies, who have monopolized all the spirit here, contrive frequently to
get up little hops at one house or other, and these are conducted with
much gaiety and good humour; albeit, parties hold each other at a wary
distance, and, although living in common beneath the same roof, have
classifications made upon principles which have hitherto eluded my
penetration, and are too numerous to be easily defined by the most
accomplished master of the ceremonies Margate ever boasted. The laws of
our exclusives, however incomprehensible, are, as elsewhere, arbitrary;
and the votary of fashion must be content blindfold to follow the
despotic goddess, or quit her ranks.

Whilst here, I had observed for some time an advertisement setting forth
that on a certain day a steam-boat would make an excursion to Block
Island. This I resolved to join: first, because any change was desirable
which might kill a day; and next, because I knew the place had been a
sort of station whereat our squadron managed to hang on during the war,
although singularly wild and harbourless.



BLOCK ISLAND.


Early in the morning, the steamer employed in this service quitted
Providence with a full live cargo; and at Newport it brought up for
about an hour, during which time several recruits, myself amongst the
number, joined her.

It blew fresh from about east by south; and, in consequence, no sooner
had we cleared the harbour, than we were met by a heavy head-sea, and
nothing was to be seen on all sides but sickness, and the misery
consequent upon the dilapidation of the pretty caps and bonnets of the
fair Providencials. Never was a party of pleasure-seekers in a more
woe-begone plight than was this of ours when we arrived in the open
roadstead of the most inhospitable-looking shores of Block Island.

Before we could bring up, the boats of the natives, apprised of our
purpose, surrounded the ship, offering, for a consideration of about a
quarter dollar per head, to land us upon their territory. The boats were
presently filled; and from the larger ones, after they had grounded on
the beach, we were by degrees landed in shallops.

On terra firma we encountered a few men in no outward way differing from
the fishermen of the main, but with a confirmed craving after coin,
which, however common to all civilized beings, is seldom so openly and
importunately exposed as amongst these simple citizens. Boys of
seventeen and eighteen years of age thought no shame to solicit a cent
from the passing strangers, and were not readily got rid of.

The island, over which I wandered in common with others of the goodly
company of adventurers, presented one uniform view: a rolling surface,
without any considerable elevation; sea-bound, without a single harbour,
or a village in the least attractive; half-a-dozen huts are scattered
here and there in irregular lines, indifferently built, and having no
care bestowed in the way of out-door adornment; not a tree appears on
the place, although in the sheltered situations I should, imagine they
would thrive: in short, a less attractive islet I never remember to have
visited, or one so utterly divested of interest. The only pleasure I
derived was from a view of the open roadstead, where our gallant ships
used to ride out the hardest blows, much to the surprise of the natives,
who yet spoke of the event with wonder.

Perhaps, on a visit like this, we did not see the best sample of this
isolated community: I hope not, for their sake; for our followers had a
greedy, overreaching air and manner really disgusting, and in all our
little transactions exhibited a sordid grasping propensity one could not
expect to meet with in a people so out of the world, and who are in the
possession of great plenty: their island yields abundance of corn and
common vegetables, the sea upon their shores is famous for the quantity
and quality of its fish, and therefore is this grasping spirit a matter
of some marvel. I found all my American fellow-voyagers who had been on
shore, equally struck with the singularity of our reception, and
especially mortified at the exhibition of pauperism never to be met with
upon the main. I passed two years in America, and the only place where I
ever was importuned by a native beggar was at this island.

Our voyage back was quickly accomplished, being before the wind; but the
rolling of the vessel occasioned a _da capo_ of the morning's scene,
anything but pleasant, crowded as we were. This was my very first
attempt at a "steam-boat excursion," the allurements of which are daily
set forth, coloured after anything but nature, in all the journals: a
man may be excused for doing a foolish thing once; this is one of the
follies I can safely pledge myself never to commit again. The Rhode
Island party was landed at Newport early in the evening, and in so much
had the advantage of the pleasure seekers from higher up the river. If
ever there should chance such another tempting of "Providence," I hope,
for sake of its pretty girls, it may be successfully resisted.

On the 27th of August I took leave of Newport and its pleasant
atmosphere and sociable visitors; and certainly think that it would be
difficult to select a place better adapted for a summer's residence,
were there any means of conserving one's individuality a little: the
situation and climate being unexceptionable.



NEW YORK.


ROCKAWAY.--A ROAD ADVENTURE.


Finding a hot day in New York on my arrival, I accompanied Mr. R----d
and his lady to Rockaway, a fine beach on Long Island, and upon which a
subscription hotel of enormous dimensions has this year been built.

At this palace of the sand-hills, outside of which nothing attractive is
to be found save a breeze, I encountered many of my New York friends.
The crowd was now thinned daily by departures; but if the persons who
had departed were as agreeable as those yet remaining, and animated by a
similar spirit of enjoyment, their absence was a serious loss. A spirit
of sociability and good-humour seemed to prevail here; and the
inducements for walking being limited to loose sand-hills, without the
least shade, on a rough shingle beach, the fun was all reserved for the
evening, when the inmates assembled in the drawing-room, where each
contributed a quota; and music, conundrums, waltzing, a quadrille, or a
Virginian reel, made a couple of hours literally fly away. Here, as in
most of the watering-places of the country, early hours appeared a
standing rule.

This house is well arranged, and the table exceedingly good. My stay was
limited to three or four days, a circumstance I regretted the less on
account of finding that most of my intimate acquaintance were returning
to their homes.

On Sunday, September 14th, at two o'clock P.M., embarked on board the
mail-boat for Amboy, taking with me a nag I had used as a saddle-hack
throughout the summer months; my purpose being to ride through the
country intervening between the Raritan and the Delaware rivers, as I
had done on more than one occasion, but never before by the same route
exactly which I now intended to pursue by way of changing the scene.

I found five horses on board the boat, bound for Bordenton races, and
about five o'clock we were all landed at Amboy, whence I directly pushed
on for my next stage, Hightstown. The road was a track of light white
sand, and ran through a close dwarf forest, stocked with a fine growth
of musquitoes, but having no one attraction to call for the halt of a
minute. By half-past seven I had reached my quarters for the night; saw
my horse well taken care of under the superintendence of a good-humoured
Irish boy, who was ostler, and, as he informed me, deputy waiter,
besides having a "power of other things to be doin';" next, partook of a
comfortable supper, and, after a short walk about the village, to bed;
my purpose being to reach Bordenton next morning by six o'clock, to take
the early boat for Philadelphia.

About three o'clock A.M. I was roused by my host, who brought me a
light. He had made a good guess at the time; but it would have been as
well had he slept an hour or two later. My horse was soon got ready, and
I set forward to feel my way, with an assurance that I had nothing to do
but keep right a-head, the road being as straight as a hickory pole.

The morning was fine, but cold: the stars yet twinkled brightly; but
their light did not suffice to make my way very clear to me; so I
followed my directions implicitly, and for some time briskly.
Unluckily, a sea of mist was to be passed as I went through the low
grounds; and, whilst in this, I could not discern my horse's ears for
the soul of me, notwithstanding that the punctuality of the steamer
demanded that I should lose no time.

I had a good nag under me, however, and rattled on merrily enough,
thinking to myself what a very priggish person it must have been who
first promulgated the saying, that no wise traveller ever quits his
hostel before the sun gets up, or remains out of it after the sun has
gone to bed. "There were no steamers at six A.M. in those times," said I
to myself, as I conned over the musty aphorism; "and travelling must
have been done by this methodical person at a very slow pace." At this
moment I heard the rattle of boards, and became aware that I was on a
bridge: I instantly reined up, when, rattle! up tilts some loose plank,
and in goes one of my nag's legs up to the shoulder. To fall back upon
his haunches, make a rear up, and, in answer to a sharp blow of the
spur, suddenly to bolt over something and into somewhere, was the action
of a moment: in the tumble, that succeeded his leap, I got a couple of
confounded hard raps on the side of the head, which convinced me I had
not lighted among feathers.

My horse was either the most stunned or the most frightened, for I was
first on my feet; and after scrambling up a hank below the end of the
bridge, I made shift to urge my nag to get on his legs and regain the
road.

My upper story was a good deal confused, but knowing there was no time
to be lost, after ascertaining that the horse's knees were not broken,
and that my bones though shaken were all whole, up I got and away we
started, with a new, and, as it turned out, a bad departure. I
congratulated myself on being so easily let off; for, had a plank turned
on the middle of the bridge instead of the extremity, the forward spring
of my horse would have precipitated us into the river, which was less
desirable infinitely than the dry ditch down whose bank we had rolled.

On I pushed, and up got the day, slowly but, brightly enough: a spire
appeared in view, and I considered myself at Bordenton; the village was
quickly gained, but proved some place unknown to me. On I went, and
about a quarter of an hour after saw a second spire. "Here we are in
port at last, thank Heaven," said I, for never did sixteen miles appear
so long to me: but no, all was yet strange, not a point could I
recognise. At a moment when my perplexity was complete--for, though
confused, I felt assured I had covered more than the ground lying
between my harbours--I saw a man with a horse and cart leaving a yard
upon some early errand: riding up to him therefore, I inquired,

"Pray, sir, how far is it to Bordenton?"

"Exactly eighteen miles," was the answer.

I conceived at first that my question was not rightly understood;
therefore, to make all sure, reiterated the inquiry, adding, "I mean
Bordenton, where Joseph Bonaparte lives."

"When he's there, you mean," says the man: "I guess I mean that too."

"Bordenton eighteen miles off!" ejaculated I. "My friend, it's not
possible; either you or I must be a little mad!"

"I'm quite the contrary," observed my sharp-witted informant, "bein'
uncommon sensible; I don't know how you feel about the head
notwithstanding."

I now began to imagine he was quizzing me; therefore, in order to make
him feel that my questions were urged in anything but a jesting spirit,
I made known my object in taking the road thus early, and concluded by
saying,

"I have been riding for two hours on the way to Bordenton, being but
sixteen miles distant from it at starting; so how, my good friend, do
you make it out?"

"Well, I don't know," was his reply, given in a most unsympathising sort
of tone; "but I reckon you'll about double the distance if you ride for
two hours more on this road, as you are now a-going."

"How so?" said I, "Is not this the road?"

"O yes! I guess it is, only you're looking towards the wrong ind on it,
if you want to fetch Bordenton; but, maybe, you're bound for Amboy all
the time, mister?"

"And where the devil is Hightstown?" said I.

"About two miles and a half behind you. I'm going there myself."

At this moment I do not think it would have been difficult to have made
me doubt my own identity, so utterly bothered was I; but my informant
was quite right, for, turning about, I entered the village for the third
time this morning, just three hours after I took my first departure
from it, during which I must have ridden at least twenty-four miles.

Not wanting to answer many questions, I alighted at the rival hotel,
ordered breakfast, and looked at my horse's legs. I found the hair just
rubbed off one knee, and that he was scratched on the other leg from the
fetlock joint to the fore-arm, but nowhere badly cut. After a hasty
breakfast I returned to the road, and got safely to my destination in
time for the second boat. It was a blundering adventure, but served me
with a hearty laugh when it was over; I must, however, have been a good
deal bothered by my fall, or I should never have headed the wrong way,
dark as it was. My left temple continued swollen for two or three days;
and my horse was laid up for a month, the glands of his neck swelling,
until a serious abscess was formed, owing to his having pitched with his
head against the bank in falling. I narrowly inspected the place a few
weeks after this morning, and only wonder both our necks were not
broken.



JOURNAL.


_Philadelphia, Sept. 16th._--The climate just now is delicious; and
these clean quiet streets, with the trees which shade them, have all the
freshness of spring. Many Southern strangers are here, enjoying the
delightful residence this city affords at this season of the year.
Chestnut-street, if not so crowded, quite as gay as Broadway just now,
being daily filled with pretty women. Theatre crowded.

_24th._--Colonel B----ke and his family arrived _en route_ for
Washington, which they are desirous of visiting previous to their
departure for England. It is a pity they are so late in the season, or
rather so early: the capital is deserted now, and hot as Jamaica; even
our hospitable minister, Sir Charles, has not yet, I fancy, resumed his
good housekeeping.

_25th._--Had the pleasure of driving Mrs. B----ke and Miss M----e to the
works at Mount Pleasant, and thence along the south bank of the
Schuylkill: the day was sunny, yet not over warm; the river and its
beautiful banks were never seen to greater advantage; the foliage, just
touched by the hand of Autumn, was changing fast, not "into the sear and
yellow leaf," but into the most lovely livery in which nature ever
dressed her forests; I had the satisfaction of hearing my favourite
haunt sufficiently lauded by the whole party. Dined with Colonel
B----ke.

_27th._--After a long ride in the morning, accompanied Colonel B----ke
and ladies to dinner at Mrs. W----gs. In the evening, a small party,
with music. A sister of our hostess, Madame P----t, who is an
accomplished musician, sang some duets with Count S---- in excellent
taste; and we had Mrs. W----gs' harp in perfection. She is certainly the
best lady harpist I ever heard; her taste and feeling are both good, her
execution certain and brilliant, and her touch nearly as firm, if not
quite so vigorous, as Bochsa's, whose pupil indeed she is; and infinite
credit does she do her master.

Is it that music is more cultivated as a science in Philadelphia, or
that I have chanced to light upon a more musical circle here than it
has been my fortune to encounter elsewhere? Certain it is, I have not,
in the other great cities, met any women whose musical education appears
so exceedingly good, though a love for the art, I should say, is general
throughout the country.

_28th._--At seven A.M. left Chestnut-street for Baltimore. Whilst
steering through the waters of the Chesapeake, perceived a large steamer
standing right for us, with a signal flying. Learned that this was the
Columbus, bound for Norfolk, Virginia, for which place we had several
passengers, who were now to be transhipped to the approaching vessel.

We were out in the open bay, with half a gale of wind blowing, and some
sea on; it therefore became a matter of interest to observe how two
large ships of this class would approach each other.

The way they managed this ticklish affair was really admirable: before
we neared, I observed the Norfolk ship was laid head to wind, and just
enough way kept on to steer her; our ship held on her course, gradually
lessening her speed, until, as she approached the Columbus, it barely
sufficed to lay and keep her alongside, when they fell together, gangway
to gangway: warps were immediately passed, and made secure at both head
and stern; and in a minute the huge vessels became as one.

Here was no want of help; the luggage and the passengers were ready at
the proper station, so that in a handful of minutes the transfer was
completed without bustle or alarm. Meantime the interest of this novel
scene was greatly increased by the coming up of the inward-bound
Norfolk-man, which flitted close by us amidst the roar occasioned by the
escaping steam of the vessels lying-to, a noise that might have drowned
the voice of Niagara.

As we thus lay together, I noticed that the upper or promenade deck of
the Columbus was completely taken up by a double row of flashy-looking
covered carts, or tilt-waggons, as they are called here. Upon inquiry, I
found that these contained the goods, and were, indeed, the movable
stores, or shops, of that much enduring class, the Yankee pedlars, just
setting forth for their annual winter cruise amongst the plantations of
the South: where, however their keen dealing may be held in awe, they
are looked for with lively anxiety, and their arrival greeted as an
advent of no little moment.

They form a hardy and enterprising class, and ought to be well paid for
the risks and great labour they undergo; being, in fact, the mercantile
pioneers of the continent, every corner of which they penetrate from the
Atlantic to the Pacific, supplying, in their route, the frontiers with
little luxuries that else would never find a way there for years to
come. They thus keep the chain of civilization entire, binding the
remotest settlers to the great Union by their necessities, to which it
administers through these its adventurous agents, whose tempting
"_notions_" constantly create new wants amongst the simple children of
the forest and prairie.

Arranged in a half circle about the bow on the main-deck, I observed the
horses of these royal pedlars: they stretched their necks out to examine
us with a keenness of look worthy their knowing masters' reputation and
their own education.

Our business being completed, the hissing sound of the waste-steam pipe
ceased, this force being once more applied to its right use; the paddles
began to move, the lashings were cast off, and away the boats darted
from each other with startling rapidity; the Columbus, with the gale
aft, rushing down the great bay of the Chesapeake, and the Washington
breasting its force right for Baltimore.

Our captain, I soon perceived, was bent upon overtaking the steamer that
had passed whilst we were busied alongside the Columbus; and so quickly
did he overhaul her, that, although we had not over fourteen miles to
go, he left her astern far enough before entering the harbour to satisfy
his honour, and prove the George Washington the fastest boat. About four
o'clock P.M. we approached the wharf, amidst the usual cries of "coach!"
"want a coach, your honour?" given in accents always welcome to my ears,
for they remind me of home.

I am here tempted to recall a little personal anecdote, which is
illustrative of the character of this class of my countrymen, and proves
that the ready address for which they are so famous at home does not
desert them on this side the water.

During the first visit I paid this city, I had of course made particular
acquaintance with one or two Jarveys; for I lived a long way from my
work, and their attention was serviceable. On my next arrival at the
harbour, it was late: we had encountered a snow storm, and I, being wet
and wretched enough, was anxious to get to the hotel, having to play
that night. I was on the look-out as we touched the wharf, and with
great delight heard a voice most melodiously bawl out,

"O! blur' an' oons, boys, if here isn't Mr. Power!"

The planks were shoved over, and, at the same moment, half a dozen
voices greeted me with the accustomed

"Here's a coach, Mr. Power!"

"Och! sure your honour'll go wid _me_ this turn, for luck!"

"You're welcome, Mr. P----: long life to yez! it's I've the coach'll
whip you up to ould Barnums', snug and dry, in no time."

In the midst of this din, whilst I was yet on the plank, I perceived a
tall raw-boned Tipperary lad, who had evidently decided on appropriating
me, making his way most unceremoniously through the crowd, shouting out
in a tone that drowned all competitors,

"Och! thin', will yez stop yer bawling, and don't bother Mr. Power,
when his _own_ carriage has bin waiting for him here these two hours."

An appeal like this was not to be resisted: I therefore accompanied my
friend to my _own_ carriage; and whatever doubts I might entertain as to
this part of my friend's statement, the fact of its having been in
waiting for "these two hours" I could readily credit; for I found it
half full of snow. I observed upon its condition, saying that, as I was
expected, _my_ carriage might have been better looked after.

"Wasn't I below looking afther ye're honour, and that's the way the snow
got in without my seein' it: indeed, we're not a dale used to snows here
away; but I'll have it out and turn the cushions, and powdher you up to
the hotel in a minute."

All this was said and done in an accent and with a manner that made me
for a moment forget the wharf of Baltimore, and fancy myself at the foot
of Essex bridge, or landing on the pier of Kingston.

Just as I was sitting down to dinner, received a note from Mr. S----r,
offering kindly, that, if I felt so disposed, they would next morning
take out the hounds, and see if a fox could not be found. I accepted
the invitation with pleasure, and dined no worse with the prospect of a
run in the distance.

To the theatre, and early to bed, after giving directions to be called
at half-past five A.M., fox-hunting being an early business here; in
fact, the moment the sun is fairly out, the moisture vanishes from the
ground, and afterwards it becomes hard to find. Slept like a dormouse;
dreamed of dogs, dykes, and red-foxes, until I was awakened by my horse
backing at a Virginia rail-fence, and giving me a nearer prospect of his
ears than was consistent with the true principles of equation--found Sam
shaking me by the shoulder, with warning that it was time to rise.

_29th._--Took a cup of coffee, and mounted the nag Mr. S----r had sent
for my use, with a saddle ample enough for a camel, a double bridle, a
martingale, and all kinds of traps equally perplexing. The martingale,
judging from the pony's make and carriage, I at once took objections to;
but the white-headed negro groom received my directions to take it off
with such evident horror, saying with tears in his eyes, "Dat he not at
all good, no how neber, widout da martin-gal," that out of courtesy I
felt compelled to retain it for the present, but with the mental
resolution to remove it when we got to cover.

I soon discovered that my pony at his ordinary gait was a "fiddler,"
besides exhibiting slight symptoms of musical talent; he was, however,
cobby and well-built, showed much spirit, and had a good spice of
breeding about him; presuming his pluck to be answerable, I did not
despair of being somewhere.

In the suburbs we unkennelled the dogs: the pack consisted of twenty,
all counted; ill-matched as to size and bone, but appearing healthy,
clean, full of spirits, and in good working trim.

The huntsman, an old builder, of sporting character, turned out with his
dogs, mounted on a powerful bay horse nearly thorough-bred, with capital
pins, and real Irish quarters; as is the uniform custom here, I observed
he rode with a martingale, having slips of leather on the reins to
prevent the rings from drawing close to the cheek. How the devil are
they to jump tired nags with these things! says I to myself; but we
shall see!

Our huntsman, albeit his equipment would not have won him credit or
recognition as "a sporting man" at a costermonger's skurry in
Battersea-fields, had the quick eye, bright look, and keen expression
of feature common to all knowing ones in the noble art of _vénerie_: he
managed to make his dogs obedient, and kept them well together during a
ride of some six or eight miles, although no two couple were at all
matched in weight or power.

At length we cast off into as likely a looking cover as ever hound was
put through, and in ten minutes after we received good information from
a dependable quarter that Reynard was there or thereabouts; the scent
was, judging by the tongue, not a very warm one, but our huntsman
appeared confident that all was right.

In a few minutes the cry grew more cheery, the lively dogs more anxious;
and whilst poking through the cover, I saw the fox, a grey one, stealing
outward, and tally-ho'd him.

The dogs were wide abroad, but all busy as ants; the leaders confident,
and showing no signs of being at fault; the old man declined to hark
'em-to, preferring that they should find their own way: this, after a
good deal of doubling, they certainly did; an old hound hit the right
scent, by inspiration as it were; and went away to it as straight as a
rifle-ball, and almost as quick; taking out of this cover across a
small meadow that divided it from another, into which the fox struck as
quickly as possible.

It became evident, after a little dodging about, that Reynard had made
up his mind to trust to these neighbour covers for safety; the dogs
could not get him off: we viewed the rascal several times; and at one
time I hoped he had resolved to change his plan and go-away, for he
dashed from the cover-edge and tried his speed with the dogs, leading
them gallantly for a few minutes; but the beast had no real game in his
nature, for he doubled back for another corner of his bush.

Thus he ran and thus we rode from cover to cover, nearly always in the
same line, for full two hours and a half; when the cur being brought
fairly to a stand-still, was caught and killed near to where he was
first tally-ho'd. The only interest afforded by this sort of chase arose
from the extreme tenacity with which the hounds held on to the trail as
they ran their prey through all his doubles in covers closely set with
trees, and having an undergrowth of thick brushwood and bramble, all but
impassable.

I was also much amused by observing the behaviour of two young English
hounds, that had been imported this season only, by Captain Stockton,
from the kennel of Sir Harry Goodricke, and marked H. G. on the
off-side. The slut took to this rough work as keenly as any of the old
hounds, and was well up with the leading dogs throughout; but the dog
would not face the cover; he stuck close to the heels of the last horse
in every skurry, and never evinced the least desire to do credit to his
gallant breeding.

About three o'clock got back to Baltimore, with but a poor opinion of
Transatlantic fox-hunting, if this may be considered a specimen. My
excellent and sport-loving friend, S----r, informs me, however, that the
red fox when found is another affair altogether, possessing great speed,
and having courage to rely upon it.

In search of one of this family, I have promised to ride on Friday, wind
and weather permitting; at present both are more variable than I can
describe, the extreme changes of the temperature, and the suddenness of
these, utterly surpassing all my experience. One day I have a large
fire, and the next, windows and doors open in search of cool air: in the
course of the afternoon a change of twenty degrees is a common
occurrence. The Indian summer has not yet set in, but when the influence
of the equinox is over, we shall have, I hope, a few of those divine
days that made last fall so enjoyable a season.

Since my last visit, a very handsome hotel has been completed adjoining
the Exchange, of which building it forms indeed a part; it is to be
conducted after the manner of the Mansion-house at Philadelphia. This is
the work of two or three public-spirited men, and the benevolence of
their design merits the thanks of the travelling community; for the more
such hotels are multiplied, the better for them.

_30th._--Accompanied by Mr. G----s, went to look over a small collection
of pictures belonging to a Mr. Gilmour. I was struck by a couple of
portraits painted by Lawrence: they were the likenesses of the
proprietor of the house and his wife. The gentleman was done in the best
style of this master; and the lady, an exceedingly lovely woman, was
also an admirable as well as a most attractive portrait; but lacking, I
imagined, that quiet simple grace which makes his female figures so
refined, so inimitable.

Here were several good pictures of both the Italian and Dutch schools,
amongst others a Cuyp, said to be undoubtedly original; but, viewed
through the medium of closely-curtained drawing-rooms, on a dull day, it
was not possible to form a correct judgment as to the true character of
any of the subjects. The whole thing was however in good taste; and
numberless articles of _virtù_ gave evidence of the refinement and love
of art which distinguishes the owner, who, I regretted to learn, was at
this time confined to his bed by severe illness. I had the honour of
being presented to the lady of the house; and, although many years have
passed since she sat to our late President, I at once recognised her for
the original of the charming portrait to which I have alluded.

_October 3rd._--Friday, at seven A.M., left Barnum's to seek for a red
fox in company with my friend S----r, and that fine old man, Mr. Oliver,
now no more. We were joined on the way by three or four other gentlemen,
and on we pushed for the Neck, where the landing took place under Ross,
our ground being the field of battle. The morning was insufferably
sultry; but, as it had rained all the previous day, it was decided by
the knowing ones that the scent would lie well.

I observed that we had on this day a new huntsman, and, upon inquiry for
our former companion, learnt that he was compelled to stay by his
brick-field. His successor, a queer-looking fish, who was hailed as
Colonel A----, afforded me much amusement by the singularity of his
equipment; as we neared our hunting-ground, my attention was yet more
strongly fixed upon the colonel by old Mr. Oliver, who made several
humorous allusions to a former hard run of our huntsman's over the same
line of country; allusions which called forth loud laughter from all
present, including the subject of them, although I observed his
merriment to be accompanied by a whimsical air of embarrassment.

I was quickly put up to the fun by one of our party, who informed me,
that on the day of the fight which took place here, it was the colonel's
fortune to command a battalion of militia fifteen hundred strong; he had
been stationed with his battalion behind a fence, with orders to make it
good as long as possible; but the general commanding on the field
perceiving that the position was turned at some distance by a corps of
the British, sent an _aide_ to the gallant colonel, directing him to
change his front so as to face the advancing enemy, and retire to the
next field, where his flank would be covered.

The colonel, whose military eye now clearly perceived that his position
was the evident aim of the advancing British column, whose quick step
was rapidly shortening the distance between, listened to the message of
his commander with some impatience, replying to the _aide_ with
admirable promptitude.

"Why, look'ee, major, as to changin' front and all that, I calculate
you'd best do it yourself: but I dare say what you tell me about
retiring is all right; I see no possible objections to that; therefore,
I wish you a very good day."

The colonel kept his word: no sooner said than done; _retiring_
instantly in the direction of home, and never halting for breath until
he reached the city, a march of about seven or eight miles, which was
accomplished in a time that proved highly creditable to the wind and
bottom of both himself and such of his corps as stuck to their chief
throughout this rapid movement.

The worthy militia colonel was tried by court-martial, and broke, for
this wise exercise of his judgment; he still, notwithstanding, rejoices
in his military title; and follows the hounds stoutly at a good healthy
old age, which in all human probability would never have arrived had he
waited to change his front with a veteran corps actively deploying on
his flank in open field.

We drew a great extent of cover, but found no fox; indeed, if we had,
the day came on too hot for either dogs or horses to have followed far.
I was sufficiently delighted with my ride; the woods were beautiful, and
from the Neck both the harbour and city show to great advantage.

During this visit to Baltimore, I had changed my scene of action from
the "Front Street" to the "Holiday Theatre;" smaller, but more
comfortable than my first quarters: this city is not so theatrical as
the others I have visited, but no audience can be more agreeable; they
certainly ought to like a play, for when they do come they enjoy it
heartily; and during my present visit the house was unusually well
attended. As a residence I like Baltimore much; its market is equal to
any other in the States, and cheaper than either Philadelphia or New
York.

The great race-meeting, on the central course here, being to take place
on the 21st of this month, I resolved to attend it; and spent my
intervening fortnight between Philadelphia and Princeton, where I passed
a few days at Mr. S----n's, quail-shooting, in company with a
countryman, whose society made the longest day light, and sometimes
indeed did as much for the longest night. On the 18th I again quitted
the hospitable Princeton, and accompanied Captain S----n to Bristol,
_via_ Trenton. In the latter place we found the whole community
rejoicing over the triumph of the democratic or Jackson party, in favour
of which the past election had proved most decisive. At Bristol we took
the steamer for Philadelphia, and next day on to Baltimore for the
races: the weather for the last ten days unexceptionable.

_Tuesday, 21st._--Attended the central course: a pleasant ride of six
miles or so. On this day was made the first attempt at running
three-year old horses with our weight and for our distance, instead of
the four-mile heats usual here; the attempt was a decided failure: an
evident prejudice existed against it amongst the sporting men; only six
horses were entered, and of these four paid forfeit: the race became a
match therefore, and went off tamely. I doubt whether the experiment
will ever succeed here, if even it is repeated.

Nothing can be more meagre than the ordinary accessories of an American
race-course: here is no assemblage of the _beau-monde_, no populace, no
four-in-hand drags, no costermongers, no donkeys, no dukes, no
thimble-rig, no gipsies; in short, "no nothin'," except a few
quiet-looking hacks and a sprinkling of sulkies.

On this day, I observed about a dozen ladies in the comfortless stand:
these were here in order to qualify for the race-ball, the stewards
having given out that no _invites_ would be extended to any ladies who
did not, on one day at least, grace the course with their presence.

_24th._--A better assemblage on the course than I have yet seen: a good
deal of excitement stirring in consequence of "Shark" being entered once
more to run against the pet of the South, "Trifle." The stand presented
quite a goodly show of women: a greater number of pretty ones it would
be difficult to collect in any city of the size.

The race was won by the favourite "Trifle" in two four-mile heats, two
of the horses entered being distanced in the first: the time of the
first heat was seven minutes 28 seconds; and of the second, seven
minutes 27 seconds.

"Shark" again ran under great disadvantages; for, during his journey
from Princeton in New Jersey, he had thrown out a bad curb on his
off-hock, close to the articulation of the joint. Captain S----n was
resolved, however, that there should be no disappointment, and started
him accordingly. He was badly ridden, and ran lame for the first three
miles, but came well in. For the second heat his rider was changed, and
he made a slashing race, coming in close to the little mare. "Shark" is
an Eclipse colt, of remarkable power and beauty, and will yet, I think,
turn out one of the first race-horses of the country.

In the evening, the race-ball took place, and here were congregated most
of the assembly-going beauty of Baltimore; but, I should say, the
cathedral is the place where the greatest portion may be seen. I do not
know whether or not my judgment is correct, but the general style of
dress struck me to be in better taste here than I had elsewhere observed
it; perhaps because it was plainer, a style that suits my fancy better
than any mode having more pretension.

A good supper was one of the provisions not least admirable; a majestic
corned round of beef stood on a side-table; an object of admiration not
often presented to view in the States, but of whose beauty there could
be no two opinions: for myself, I did more than admire; I at once
addressed it ardently, and for its return of tenderness can avouch: I
gratefully remember it, still cherishing the fond recollection.

A compassionate countryman of my own, who saw me drinking iced
champagne, bade me follow him: with that provident attention to trifles,
so characteristic of Ireland on similar occasions, this thoughtful soul
had not "forgotten to remember" that a little whisky-punch might be
acceptable on a cold night before facing the air of morning. The
compound in question had been prepared by an experienced hand, and the
_material_ was great indeed; I was assured that the spirit had been just
fifteen years away from its native city, Cork. Honoured be its parent.
Still! may the turf ever burn bright beneath it, and the New World long
rejoice in its fruitfulness!


     "For Oh! there's a spell

       In its every drop, 'gainst the ills of mortality.
     Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen,
       Her cup was a fiction, but this a reality."


_Sunday, 26th._--Was called early, having an engagement to pass a
couple of days with Mr. C----l at his country-house: found a gale of
wind blowing, with an accompaniment of heavy rain: countermanded the
vehicle I had ordered, and returned to bed, since a country excursion on
this day was out of the question.

_27th._--Accompanied Mr. S----r to Carrol's Island, having arranged to
visit this celebrated ducking-ground on our way to Mr. Oliver's seat.

We reached the house about eleven o'clock, the distance being sixteen
miles: the cottage, which forms the head-quarters of the club of
gentlemen who farm this sporting-stand, was plain enough for the most
republican spirit. One sitting-room, and a couple of dormitories
containing a camp-bed for each member, with pegs and racks for arms and
implements, formed the whole of the appointments and furniture; but the
sport is first-rate; and the plain simplicity of this _ménage_ gives
increased zest to the meeting, and promotes the hardihood essential both
to the successful pursuit of game and to the healthful enjoyment of the
sport.

Before the hour of dinner, we walked down on to the long neck of land
where the shooters patiently abide the flight of the ducks: on one side
is the Seneca, and on the other the Gunpowder river; both favourite
feeding-grounds of all the water-fowl frequenting this region of creeks,
rivers, and bays. About the central line of the neck of land, a dozen or
so of stands are ranged at equal distances, built about four feet high,
each large enough for two gunners; with shelves within for the various
traps needful, a plank floor, and a couple of stools.

Here the men on duty take post; and, chewing the quid of "sweet and
bitter fancies" patiently abide the moment when it may please the
canvass-back to give his bosom to the breeze, and quit one river for the
other. Half a dozen Retrievers, of a mixed breed, lay lounging on the
grass in front of this line of watch-boxes, awaiting the moment when
work should be cut out for their Sagacities. These were admirably
trained to their vocation, as I had an opportunity of judging whilst a
looker-on here. On the occasion of a small flight, a couple of long
shots were made, and a duck winged slightly: it made a good downward
slant, and fell forty yards from the shore into the Seneca: at the same
moment in dashed four dogs after it, helter-skelter: there was a little
sea on, and the object of their search at first unseen by them: a wave
of the hand from the sportsman was the signal by which their line was
regulated, and for this one of the four would occasionally look back.
The wounded bird, on being neared, dived, followed by the foremost dog;
the others staunchly pursuing the line of their under-course, directed
by the air-bubbles rising to the surface: in a little time, up came the
duck ahead of its pursuers, and the dog close upon it; being hard
pressed, down again went the duck, and down went another dog; and for
several times was this repeated, until the chase was nearly a mile from
the beach, when the dogs were recalled from a pursuit which is rarely
successful unless the game has received some bodily wound, or has a limb
broken,--so active and so strong are these birds in the water.

At two o'clock we sat down to a most capital dinner,--a joint of
roast-beef, fine fish, and Canvass-backs, that had been on the wing
within a couple of hours, together with the Red-head, Teal, and two or
three other specimens; all excellent in their way, but not comparable
for delicacy, fat, or flavour with that inimitable work of nature the
right Canvass-back duck of these waters, where the wild celery on which
they love to feed abounds, and to which they owe the delicate aromatic
flavour so prized by the _gourmand_.

At five o'clock P.M., after witnessing some sport, S----r gave the word
to mount, and off we set for Mr. Oliver's. An hour's ride brought us
within his domain, where lofty deer-fences, blackthorn hedge-rows,
well-made drives, and carefully cultivated land, formed a striking
change from the wild but beautiful forest-country through which we had
ridden.

We first came upon the farm-yard and offices of the estate, all
well-arranged and in good order: here we left our horses, and walked on
to the house,--a plain sporting-lodge, without any outward appearance or
pretension. It is well situated upon a gentle eminence overlooking a
couple of fine reaches of the Gunpowder river; on the land side the
deer-park spreads away to the forest, being divided from the lawn by an
invisible fence.

Himself an ardent lover of the sports of the field, Mr. Oliver, for a
time, took infinite pains to cultivate a legitimate taste for it; but, I
believe, without much success, although he pursued his plans on a scale
and at a cost not often imitated in this country. Indeed, to say truth,
men of fortune have little encouragement here to be liberal in this way;
since, when a gentleman has surrounded himself with all the appliances
to sporting, it is next to impossible to bring them fairly into play;
or, however social his own spirit may be, yet harder to find persons
possessing the time and taste for their enjoyment.

The worthy old sportsman gave me a grievous list of difficulties which
he had encountered from a desire to promote on this fine estate the
breed of certain animals and birds. Keepers were provided from Europe
with first-rate characters; but they found all their ancient habits were
to be unlearned here, and were soon completely at fault.

The foxes killed his pheasants; the neighbouring farmers, or boatmen
from the rivers, had decoyed his dogs and shot down his deer; and, after
a hopeless struggle, he had given up his hounds: the deer alone he
managed to domesticate and increase, his stock at present amounting to
four hundred head.

No spot could have been better chosen for an experiment of this kind, as
the whole estate lies within a natural ring-fence, bounded by deep
waters on two sides, and cut off from all neighbours on the other by a
belt of close forest. Under other laws, time would be afforded for the
regular improvement of this domain, and the plans of the founder might
be carried out by his successors; but, as it is, the present worthy
possessor once laid beneath the turf, the object of all his pains-taking
and labour will, in all probability, be cut up into small farms, or be
allowed once more to degenerate into forest, as may appear most
profitable to his heirs.

This plan may be decidedly the most advantageous for the community at
large, and I have no doubt is, since it works well here; but it has a
chilly and depressing effect on the mind when viewed by one who would
desire--and who does not?--to live in the creations which owe their
existence to his labour or his taste, and who would revisit in the
spirit the pleasant place enjoyed by his children, for whose dear sakes
it was first projected.

After supper our spirited old host gave the hour of muster for five
o'clock A.M., and we severally sought our beds in order to make the most
of the brief time left for sleep. Much as I love a fox-hunt, I freely
confess that this early rising did seem a mighty hard bargain.

_28th._--Not choosing to be laggard, as the thing was to be done, I was
first afoot for the honour of Britain;--the whole party, indeed, were
exceedingly punctual;--and after a hearty breakfast, away we rode for
cover, with a slight crisping of frost under hoof, and a warm-looking
sky just opening over head, heralding a sun that gave promise of making
woodland and meadow smoke again within the next hour or two; at present,
however, the air was nippingly shrewd, to say the least of it, and set
me to blowing my fingers like a trumpeter. At the end of about an hour's
ride the dogs were laid on, and almost immediately hit off the scent,
and went away merrily through the wood at a slashing rate. The rider is
here kept wide awake by the vicinity of the trees, many of which are
spreading and low-branched, requiring a quick eye and some suppleness to
keep one's hat from getting hurt when going "the pace," and, by St.
Hubert! these hounds in woodland appear anything but slow.

Many dark dells and lovely open glades did we thus hurrah by, and
across, with barely a glimpse in passing. In one place the path was
completely blocked up by two forest-trees, apparently but recently
rooted up; they had been rent from the earth, and flung here from
opposite sides, as though a mere stack of rushes, in the pride of their
vigour and in the full bloom of their beauty; and here they lay to
wither boll, and branch, and leaf.

A whirlwind had evidently descended on this very spot probably within a
few days; I say descended, for the whole circumference of the circle
devastated did not exceed twenty yards at most. One other tree, yet
fixed in the soil, presented an awful example of the might of the
tornado. It was a chestnut of the largest size, the trunk near the base
being seven or eight feet in circumference; it reclined at what seemed
to have been the very focus of the whirlwind; its roots yet clung to
earth; but, through the resistance thus offered, the tree had been
literally twisted round and round, until it was split into laths, the
trunk having the appearance of a great bundle of saplings peeled and
twined together by the hand of a Titan, as lads twist withy-wands; the
sturdy limbs and spreading branches, although little broken, were wound
about and knotted together in a way so curiously complicated as hardly
to be made comprehensible without the aid and evidence of sight.

Attracted by this singular forest wreck, I took to moralizing like the
melancholy Jaques, though in a strain not quite so well worthy of
record; and, losing sight of my company, was for some time thrown out.
When I caught the dogs up, it was found Reynard was fairly gone to earth
in an inaccessible ravine; so we even left him of necessity to his
repose, which had been tolerably well earned by a rattling burst of full
six miles on end.

In half an hour after we found again, when we got a second run, which,
with a couple of short checks, held us in sport for an hour and a half,
with a similar result.

By this time the day was growing smoking hot, whilst the dogs and horses
were anything but fresh; so it was agreed to collect our, by this time,
scattered forces, and turn the rein once again for the Lodge. To the
sound of "merrie horn and loud halloo" we took our way through the
pathless forest, picking up now a strayed hound and now a man astray,
until, by the time home was reached, all our company was well accounted
for; and so ends my last fox-chase in America.

Let me here insert that my hospitable host never followed hound again:
he on this day, I remember, regretted to me that a pain in his chest,
with a growing difficulty of respiration, prevented his riding as he had
once done; within a few weeks after he died, leaving a gap in the
hospitality of Baltimore that will be felt by hundreds. Mr. Oliver was
one of a class of excellent open-house men, of which class there are
specimens to be found in every part of this Union, men whose frank
hospitality is of itself sufficient to keep up the reputation of the
country amongst strangers: many of these yet live, and I trust will long
live, to the lasting honour of the States.

By birth, the subject of this notice was an Irishman; but his
affections, his sympathies, his prejudices, were all on the side of his
adopted country, which in his eyes had no equal in the world. It was
amusing to hear him speak of his visits to Europe: to England only did
he cede the right even of comparison; and on the subject of our wines he
was quite a sceptic, although he had dined at the best tables, and spoke
most warmly of his entertainers. He protested against the wines of
England being at all comparable to those of America; nay, I remember he
was heretic enough to deny us the supremacy of a rump-steak, and raised
his voice against the majesty of Dolly's.

I would not have so much heeded his advancing this heterodox doctrine
before Americans, had he not at the same time come well prepared to
prove himself qualified to give judgment by producing, hot-and-hot, a
steak that even I was compelled to admit might have been entered as A.1.
at Lloyd's.

They possess in the States generally as good beef as need be desired;
but, strange to say, with this exception, I have rarely met a tolerable
steak, according to our idea of the matter; the secret of which is, the
meat is not kept, is full of blood and fibre, and, although excellent of
flavour, is not easily disposed of by those who reject the bolting
principle, and desire to adhere to the more toilsome plan of
mastication.

_29th._--Quitted the pleasant banks of the Gunpowder, and, with my old
sporting companion, returned to Baltimore. Same day, embarked on board
steam-boat for an excursion as far as Petersburg, Virginia, _via_
Norfolk; we had a fine day and night whilst steering through this great
bay of the Chesapeake: went to bed late in consequence.

_30th._--Coming out of the cabin this morning at an early hour, found we
were off the old fort, Point Comfort. Fort Calhoun, a work on which
enormous outlay has been made, is not yet completed: the great
difficulty appears to be the unstable nature of the bank on which the
works are placed: upon the elevation of the _terre-plain_ alone, nearly
four thousand cubic yards of sand have been employed; all of which is
shipped from the main, and deposited within the fort. It is computed
that, by the time this place is fitted to receive a garrison, one
hundred thousand tons of stone will have been expended on the works and
breakwater which are required as an exterior support to the pressure
from within.

The completion of this truly great military work must, in a great
measure, depend upon the decrease of the subsidence to which the soil is
liable, and for which it is necessary to pause after every year's
addition of pressure, in order to proportion such a resistance as may
restore the equilibrium and secure the foundation. When I was here, one
of these pauses in the engineering department had place; but it was
said, the President had intimated his design of passing the hot season
upon this spot, when the works would be vigorously resumed under his
inspection.

Sailing up the Elizabeth river, so famous in the gallant Raleigh's
story, we reached Norfolk at eight o'clock A.M., when a portion of our
living freight was quickly transferred to the Virginia steamer for
Charleston; another portion, to which I was attached, being, with
similar promptitude, handed over to the Pocahontas ditto, bound for
Richmond, the capital of Virginia. In less than an hour we were sailing
back through the well-closed harbour of Norfolk; whence, crossing the
Elizabeth river, we entered, in a couple of hours, the noble stream now
rightly called, after its legitimate sovereign, the Powhatan, but better
known as the James's river,--"a great sinking in the poetry of the
thing," though Jamie also was a king, "but no more like his brother,"
&c.

Upon the southern banks rise a constant series of fine bold bluffs,
mostly crowned with forest trees of great beauty, now dressed in that
rich-coloured foliage so often lauded by poet and painter, but as yet,
I fancy, never done full justice to. Scott and Turner, those inspired
illustrators of nature, might have done this: as it is, I hope America
will, before many years are past, find, amongst her own sons, pens and
pencils worthy to give her beauties to the admiration of the Old World.

We arrived off the original city founded in the "Old Dominion," having
some passengers to land upon the beach, now almost as wild as when first
trodden by the adventurous foot of the bold Captain Smith. Within a few
yards of the landing-place stood the first Christian church erected on
this mighty continent: I grieve to add, this interesting altar to the
true God no longer bears his holy word: a dilapidated, but
sturdy-looking square tower of brick, alone remains to mark the site of
church and city; indeed, without timely care is bestowed by some gentle,
generous spirit, even this most interesting memorial will speedily
disappear. At present this forms one of the very few objects to which
the term picturesque may properly be applied, existing in the States;
and, linked as it is with the recollections of its gallant founders, I
confess it laid strong hold of my imagination, absorbing my eyes and
interest as long as I could keep it in view.

The low, unhealthy site of this city proved, after a prolonged struggle,
the cause, I believe, of its total desertion. Elizabeth Town, its near
neighbour and once rival, is, I have been informed, fast verging to a
similar condition.

Scattered along the banks on both sides of the river, are several
mansions raised in the old times by the wealthy planters of the "Old
Dominion," the remembrance of whose liberal expenditure and open
hospitality still does honour to their state. These houses have a strong
resemblance to the English squirearchical dwellings of the last century,
being generally large square brick buildings, commonly flanked by low
disproportioned wings; they have all hospitable-looking entrances, and
flights of steps made with reference to the number and free access of
the visitors rather than in keeping with the size of the house; their
steep, many-chimneyed roofs are usually surrounded by a showy
balustrade, and their appearance imposing and respectable, bespeaking
affluence and good housekeeping.

One or two of these mansions stood upon fine open lawns of some extent,
which swept down until their grass mingled with the waters of the
gently-flowing river, offering a slope of great natural beauty, studded
with clumps of goodly trees; the whole, however, having that most
melancholy air of neglect that seemed to say their best days were "the
days that are gone."

Under the existing law of the States those days may not be expected ever
to return; and such places as are here alluded to cannot be kept up in
families whose possessions, however ample originally, must be parcelled
out at the demise of each inheritor, until, like poor Sir Lucius, the
"mansion-house and the dirty acres" having slipped through the not
over-tenacious fingers of the Virginian proprietor, the family honour
and the family pictures will alone be left.

In reverting again to the subject of this law, which I confess I have
only viewed under its most melancholy aspect, I must add that it is by
no means unpopular here, being, in fact, perfectly accordant with both
reason and justice, and probably, as far as the commonwealth is
concerned, for the best; yet cannot I look without regret on this
oblivion of the once gentle of the land, and the scattering of the
children of those brave men whose blood and labour redeemed the
wilderness, or won it from the savage and his prey.

Quitted the Pocahontas at City-point; wherefore so called I know not,
since here is neither city nor point that I could discover, but only a
few buildings, and a fine natural wharf at which two noble ships were
lying taking in tobacco and cotton.

Whilst waiting at the landing-place amidst the bustle incident to
shifting baggage, landing passengers, and packing carriages, I witnessed
a wedding assemblage that amused me highly, and was no bad sample of
slavery in the Old Dominion.

From a large hut close to where we were set ashore poured forth a bevy
of beauty of all colours, from the deepest jet up to the quadroon just
tinged with amber. They were for the most part dressed in white, many
having expensive scarfs of gay colours, and all wearing wreaths and
bouquets of the most beautiful flowers, tastefully arranged and put on.
I had only time to learn that it was a wedding-party, and to "guess" at
the bride. I hit upon a plump, roguish-looking little devil, having a
skin like new copper, teeth of pearl, and eyes black as "Kilkenny's own
coal." She was, I observed, the centre of the many-tinted circle, and
wore, moreover, a wreath composed of the pearl-like wax-berry in her
jetty hair.

These, as I was informed, were all slaves; certainly a merrier-looking
party I never saw of white folk, and, for this occasion, their chain was
literally hidden under wreaths of roses; for a day, at least, they were
very happy, and who amongst the freest can count on what the morrow may
bring forth!

This was the first glance I had been allowed of the Virginian
agricultural slave, and I was not ill pleased to be presented with the
bright side of a condition which, to the mind of the philanthropist of
every land, is sufficiently painful without the exaggerations of the
political quack, or the fanatic outcry of the sectarian bigot seeking to
preach a crusade of extermination against men whose slaves form their
only inheritance, himself meantime, for the most selfish ends, daily
planning how best to enslave the mental part of those whose credulity
and weakness expose them for a prey.

There are few proprietors, at this day, more to be pitied than the
large planters of Virginia and the Carolinas; as high-spirited, generous
a race as may anywhere be encountered, but much weighed down of late by
the pressure of circumstances which they cannot control, and which every
year threatens to render more heavy, unless, through some miraculous
interposition, the growing causes be removed or checked. The very slave
property, for the inherited possession of which they are abused, is
becoming in many cases a burthen. Their more southern rivals can grow
cheaper, and, having a fresher soil, produce larger crops and outsell
them in the market; whilst, with a slave population, they have no chance
of ever becoming manufacturers.

From City-point, a well-horsed coach took us fourteen miles, under two
hours, to the busy little city of St. Petersburg; where, over a cup of
tea, and a good Virginy coal fire, I reviewed this journey of a couple
of days, which had afforded me many subjects for admiration and
reflection. I smoked my cigar, and, at an early hour, retired to my bed,
of which I had a choice, there being three in the room, although, at
this time, exclusively appropriated to me. I soon was fast asleep,
dreaming confusedly of Captain Smith, Pocahontas, Lord Cornwallis, Queen
Elizabeth, Powhatan, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Sir George Cockburn.



IMPRESSIONS OF PETERSBURG.


VIRGINIA.


"And here I am," said I to myself, on waking, and finding the high sun
dancing the hays over the floor, as his beams stole in through the
_jalousies_ of my windows.

"Here I am in Virginia, the scene of so much suffering and so much
gallantry,--the Eldorado of Raleigh, the refuge of the Cavalier, and the
birth-place of George Washington."

After walking through the little city, I next betook me to the bank of
the gentle Apotomax, up which stream, we read, Captain Smith was first
conveyed by his captors, and close by high-water mark was he landed,
preparatory to his being burned _pour amuser le roi_.

The tide flows just above the town; and to this spot I strolled, and sat
me down where the velvet sward rests on the stream. "And to this very
spot, perchance," said I, "did the canoes of the warriors of Powhatan
bring their most dreaded, and, consequently, best esteemed enemy, to
die the death of a thrice-honoured Brave, or, in terms more homely, to
be put to as much torture as the utmost of savage ingenuity could
devise; and this prolonged as far as the nature of the captive might
endure."


                  A RHAPSODY.

     "And as I sat, the birdis harkening thus,
     Methought that I herd voicis suddainly."
                                            CHAUCER.


Here, closing my eyes on the sloops, lighters, and schooners lying at no
great distance, and barring my ears against the cries of busy carmen and
wharfingers, and the clanging of steam-engines, I calmly set about
surveying in my mind's eye the group which ready imagination conjured up
in colours, if not as true, at least as glowing, as the by-gone reality.

About rose the forest-crowned slopes,--for this is a region of hill and
dell,--with small green belts of meadow drawn between: along the river
glided, with an arrow-like track, the light canoes, when, as they touch
this sylvan harbour, the until now well-suppressed joy of victory
bursts out in exulting shouts and yells wildly terrific;--the solitude
is awakened, the slumbering villages are roused, and the well-known cry
of Indian triumph comes back from every teeming hill; whilst the roused
deer springs trembling, from his covert, and the fierce panther
crouching seeks his gloomiest lair.

The adventurous captain, to whom peril was as a household word, and fear
a term unknown, is now unbound, and led on shore, walking with a free
step among his captors and with a cheek unblanched, casting proud
scornful looks upon forms and faces which might have scared the devil;
for the roused Indian--cowed as is his present nature by a hard-bought
conviction of his inferiority--is yet a fearful object to behold when
decked in paint and plume and all his horribly fantastic war array.

The next scene presented the assembled council and the prolonged debate;
the warriors' detail of their long secret marches, continued hunger, and
anxious ambush, until the moment arrived of the Pale-face's security,
and the Indian war-whoop, surprise, and triumph. The continued massacre
is next detailed; ending with the settlement being left a reeking
charnel-house, and its best champion led captive to crown the triumph
with his death, the last and proudest sacrifice to Indian vengeance.

The last change was to the ready stake, near which stood the unshaken
captive and the eager warriors, encircled by an admiring crowd--and
woman, too, was there, lovely woman! whose angel heart no custom,
however barbarous and time-honoured, can wholly harden against that
tender sympathy which forms at once her highest pleasure and her most
dangerous snare.

Amongst the eager crowd stood one admiring, and pitying whilst admiring,
till nature, stronger than the ties of country and of custom, spurning
their control, armed with irresistible persuasion the Indian maiden's
tongue, and touched a new chord in the stern breast of her sire and
king; at once giving to the hopeless captive life and freedom, and
winning for the name of Pocahontas the immortality of a nation's
gratitude: and never, surely, did nature show more beautiful than when
it thus rose superior to the force of habit long confirmed; nor ever did
mercy achieve a prouder triumph than when, animating woman's voice, it
reprieved from the fire of the Indian warrior a captive so feared and so
honoured.

       *       *       *       *       *

I had, in this place, the pleasure of passing an evening with a
descendant of this princess, rendered more famous by her compassionate
nature than though her father had worn the diadem of the Cæsars. This is
the third female I have encountered in society claiming the like
honourable descent; they have each been distinguishable both in
physiognomy and manner; right gentle ladies all, as ever sprung from
royal lineage, savage or civilized: one of them, lately married to a
northern gentleman, possesses in a remarkable degree the traits of
Indian blood and beauty, with much simplicity and grace of manner, and a
freshness and warmth of feeling as delightful as it is natural and
original.



IMPRESSIONS OF PETERSBURG.--THE DESERTED CHURCH.


Upon a steep hill, situated about half a mile from the hotel, and
bearing from it about south-east, stand the ruins of a well-built
church, surrounded by a large grave-yard, thickly tenanted by the once
citizens of Petersburg: numerous tombs, of a respectable and, indeed,
venerable appearance, contribute to invest the spot with quite an
Old-country character; and, viewed from the high stone wall which
surrounds it, the setting sun is glorious.

To this place my first visit was one of mere chance, but each evening
after saw me at the same calm hour taking my walk amongst the tombs. I
discovered that by far the greatest number of these decent dwellings of
the dead were inscribed to Europeans, chiefly from Ireland and Scotland:
very few were dated past the middle age of life, the majority were
indeed young men,--enterprising adventurers, who had wandered hither to
seek fortune, and had found a grave, the consummation of all wants and
desires.

Upon many of these grave-stones were displayed evidences of the
lingering pride of gentle birth; recollections which, suppressed, or
perhaps forgotten in the land of equality during life, seemed to have
survived the grave, stronger than death. Here were set forth in goodly
cutting the coat armour, crest, and motto of an old Scots or Irish
house, from which the junior branches had probably received no other
inheritance save this claim to _gentillesse_, with liberty to bear it to
some distant soil.

How favoured was the French gentleman of whom we read, who, resigning
his sword, sailed in search of gain, and was permitted to return and
reclaim it before time had rusted its bright blade! How many young
hearts, that, quitting home, have beat high with the prospect of an
equally happy return, have been doomed to waste and wither in all the
misery of hope deferred, which maketh the heart sick indeed, until care
and climate closed the protracted weary struggle, and the fortune-seeker
was laid to moulder in some stranger grave.

I trust that, amidst the changes each day brings forth here, this
ruined church will be left unprofaned, and that the tenants who sleep
within its little inclosure may be left undisturbed. And I would further
counsel any gentle traveller who rests for a sunset in Petersburg, to
walk to this church, and contemplate its going-down from off the lofty
stile leading over the western wall of the grave-yard: and when he shall
behold the forest vale below changed--as I have more than once beheld
it--into a lake of living gold, and over this shall watch the shadows of
evening steal till the last bright fringe is withdrawn, and the brown
forest again is seen to cover all the land--when, I say, this has been
witnessed, the stranger (if a woman, certainly) will hardly fail to
thank me for this discovery; for such I do verily consider it to be, as
much as was Colon's first lighting on this huge sliver of our nether
world.

I visited this little city at a period when cholera was making frightful
ravages on every side, and a consequent depression was to be expected
amongst the community. I was nevertheless greatly pleased with the
situation of the place, and with the air of business that appeared to
animate its citizens despite the frightful disease by which they were
assailed; and indeed, so far as a sojourner of five days may be
permitted to express an opinion, I should say that the evidences of the
city's prosperity and growing prospects were many and cheering.

I in this place and in the neighbourhood saw a good deal of slavery, and
heard much more: the victims themselves (so called) seem here a merry,
light-hearted, and lightly-worked race, and I was a good deal surprised
to find that in many instances their possessors were looked upon as the
real sufferers.

Some of these, it is certain, are not to be envied this description of
property, for they are often compelled to keep many active mouths for
one useful hand: yet here are numbers of such persons who do not like to
sell these household knaves, familiar as they have been from the cradle
to the day of inheritance, and mixed up with every recollection of home
and its inmates, although they would gladly renounce the present
possession to be assured against all after claims.

_Nov. 5th._--Quitted Petersburg on a delightful morning, and as far as
Norfolk made a quick trip; but, shortly after leaving this place, we
encountered a very heavy gale of wind that endured all night, and
compelled us next evening to put into Annapolis, the capital of
Maryland, for a fresh supply of fuel: that night, the gale moderating,
we reached Baltimore about fourteen hours later than was anticipated.

_7th._--Took the steamer for Philadelphia, where I rested for a day; and
thence on to New York, which I learn is exceedingly gay,--a circumstance
I do not regret to hear, as I am about to sojourn here for a couple of
weeks previous to my departure for the South.

This I discover to be the commencement of the New York gay season; and
here is, at present, no lack of amusement,--two theatres, an Italian
Opera, various public assemblies, besides the ordinary resources of
balls and family parties: of these there are three or four taking place
every week; and I do not think the New-Yorkers are ever seen to better
advantage than in the exercise and enjoyment of the lavish hospitality
usually dispensed on these occasions. Here is no fobbing you off with a
meagre account of jellies and a cup of lemonade: you find, on the
contrary, without fail, a sensible supper, abounding with substantials
for the hungry as well as trifles for the sentimental; the best wines
of the cellar are paraded in abundance, together with a punch such as I
never elsewhere remember to have encountered. Now and then, a little set
would get drawn together at these suppers, which it was no easy matter
to disperse.

_Nov. 22nd._--Embarked for Charleston, South Carolina, on board the
William Gibbons, steamer. We had a series of hard blows until the
evening of the 24th, when, getting to the southward of Cape Hatteras,
the weather gradually moderated, and, early in the morning of the 25th,
we were landed in Charleston; but so excessive was the cold, that I
conceived it possible the captain had made a mistake, and that we were
at some Charleston, in Greenland, or Icy Cape. The weather either was,
or appeared to be, much colder than in New York when we departed.



CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA.


Went to a hotel kept by a coloured family, named Jones, and was
appointed to comfortable summer-quarters in an outbuilding, where I
received an immediate call from Mr. R. R----d, a cousin of my friend, W.
R----d, of New York; and with this gentleman I dined at an excellent
boarding-house where there were three or four excellent Frenchmen
resident. Here I spent a pleasant evening, despite the severe cold.

_28th._--After two days of weather for the severity of which no people
can be worse provided, we are relieved by as lovely a day as can well be
imagined; the thermometer is at 77 degrees, the breeze bland, the
atmosphere of singular purity.

On this day I visited the theatre, a barn; the building originally
erected for this purpose being changed into a school of anatomy: so
cutting up is still the order of the day; only the practice is no longer
confined to the poets, but extended to subjects generally. After
arranging with my manager, I took a ride, making a rapid survey of the
town and its immediate vicinity.

Vegetation still appears in progress; the orange trees are flourishing,
the grass looking green, and only the forest appears clad in the sober
brown of winter.

At this season Charleston is dull to a proverb; most of the planters,
with their families, being in the country, and the rest preparing to
follow; the city is, therefore, nearly abandoned to the cotton-shippers;
and so it will remain until the month of February, when the race-meeting
draws the whole State together; and, for a period of four or five weeks,
few places, as I learn, can be more lively or more sociable. After this
date, the country families once more return to their plantations, where
they can remain with safety until about the second week in April: after
which date the choice between country and city may be summed up in the
words of Shakspeare, to "go and live, or stay and die;" since to stay is
assuredly to die, after once the malaria is fairly in movement.
Formerly, the winter campaign used to be prolonged until the middle of
June; but of late years the time has been, from some cause or other,
gradually abridged by common consent, until now the 15th of April is
considered the last day of security.

The forest rides leading on either hand from the main road to the Cooper
and Ashley rivers by which the sandy neck the city occupies is flanked,
are, though flat, very delightful. Plants and flowers of rare beauty and
in great variety abound here; the wild vine and other climbing plants
are drawn from tree to tree; and the live-oak, sycamore, hickory, with
the loftiest pines, altogether form avenues down which the eyes of a
stranger wander with delight, and in which on these delicious calm days
it is a joy to linger. My rides were sometimes solitary; and it was on
these occasions I most enjoyed these forest paths, now as healthful as
beautiful; yet, let only a few months pass away, and to sleep one night
within their shade would be death as certain as though it were spent
beneath the boughs of the poisonous Upas.

I could hardly conceive the possibility of such a baneful change, as, on
a bright day of December, I sauntered carelessly along, watching the sun
dancing in long lines of light over the smooth water, and an atmosphere
before me glowing, as though a veil of gold tissue had been drawn above
the forest. Yet so it is; the overseers alone remain upon the plantation
after sunset, and amongst these the numerous deaths, as well as the
cadaverous hue of the survivors, afford unquestionable testimony of the
peril incurred by such a residence.

To the negro alone this air appears congenial, as the lively look of the
chubby little imps that fill every cabin fully indicates. It is
impossible not to be struck by the contrast between the looks of these
children of the sun and the degenerate offsets of northern men; I have
often observed with feelings of sorrow the sickly aspect of the children
of some road-side store-keeper, or publican of the white race, as they
sit languidly before their parents' door, with sallow parchment skins
and lack-lustre eyes, the very emblems of malaria, possessing neither
the strength nor the desire to follow those active sports natural and in
fact necessary, at their age: whilst, sporting about or near them, might
be observed the offspring of their slaves; the elder ones, with hardly
any covering, pursuing each other, shouting and grinning from ear to
ear; the youngsters, quite naked perhaps, rolling on the kitchen floor,
or creeping about in the dust like so many black beetles, almost as
broad as long. Despite their degraded condition, I have at such times
been tempted to exclaim, "Surely this must here be the most enviable
lot!"

This picture, however, must not be applied to the wealthy portion of the
landed proprietors, who either migrate north with each season, or else
seek the shelter of the dry sandy soil of the Pine-barrens, and on their
heights breathe health and life; whilst below and around, at no great
distance, stalk disease and death.

Amongst this class, on the contrary, I have often been surprised to find
children whose elastic forms and ruddy complexions would have been
noticeable even in the health-giving air of Britain; and indeed, taken
as a whole, I should say that the population of Charleston City, the
capital of this deadly country, wears as fresh a look, and presents as
many hale, hearty old persons, as any of the northern cities of this
continent. I was, perchance, the more struck with this fact from having
expected the very reverse.

An air of greater antiquity prevails throughout this city than may be
discovered in any other I have visited in the States; I should conceive
it to be just in the condition the English army left it; I did not see a
large house that appeared of newer date; and the churches, guard-house,
&c. must be the same.

This population apparently has slept whilst their persevering brethren
of the North, to use one of their familiar sayings, have "continually
gone ahead" with an energy of purpose admirable as irresistible. This
difference can, I fancy, be accounted for in two ways: first, much may
be fairly set down to climate, which limits the business months here to
about six; next, the revolution found here a sort of aristocratic
association of wealthy proprietors, the produce of whose estates
furnished them with ample means, but whose business habits were limited
to periodical settlements with their factors or brokers. The revolution,
and the changes consequent upon it, awoke the spirit and incited the
hope of every man to whom the absence of inherited wealth supplied an
impetus to labour; and the populated portions of these States became as
a hive thronged with an active, money-seeking swarm, by which the idle
and the inert were thrust aside before they became awake to their
changed condition, or heard a murmur of the tide whose waves were
encircling them about on every side.

The law of primogeniture having ceased to exist, estates became subject
to division and subdivision, until the growing families of the original
proprietors found themselves unable to continue planters with any
prospect of advantage. In such cases the property was sold, and the
proceeds divided according to law, or in conformity to the will of the
testator, and so passed into strange hands; whilst with straitened means
the members of the family of the once wealthy planter removed to some
city, and here clung to their original habits and prejudices; nor,
except in a few instances, ever turned their thoughts to trade, at once
the source and secret of their changed condition; and into the hands of
whose active agents, in fact, had passed the home and the inheritance of
their fathers.

Comparatively few of the old families now remain who are wealthy; but
happily these have mostly become aware of the effects certain to follow
the existing state of society and laws, as well as of the necessity of
providing their children with the means of warding off their worst
consequences. Now, therefore, the sons of the best men of the South are
wisely placed in counting-houses in the great trading cities; or,
however good their prospects may be, are bred up to some useful calling,
which in this country will, if pursued with industry, ensure decent
competence if not always wealth.

The condition of numbers of men, among those of the South who have never
been trained to this laudable course, is at this day one that excites
great commiseration. How many fine intelligent-looking young fellows may
be observed lounging about in the most hopeless idleness, easily to be
distinguished for the sons of gentlemen, wearing in a half slovenly way,
but with a flashy air, expensive clothes and ill-assorted articles of
finery, without possessing either means or energy to cultivate those
manly dissipations which in some sort redeem the idleness of our
European youth, and at certain seasons withdraw them from mere pursuits
of sensuality; making that at least graceful, if not useful to the
community, which here becomes truly hideous, as the reckless air and
wasted features of most of these unfortunate hereditary idlers
sufficiently attest.

I do not anywhere know a class more to be pitied in a country, wherein
the idle man finds neither sympathies, pursuits, nor associates, from
which he can derive emulation, improvement, or even amusement worthy a
rational being; it is, let me add, an exceedingly small class, and of
necessity must, I conceive, decrease rapidly; at present its members
ought to be regarded by parents as moral landmarks, living to warn the
wise and worthy from that course on which their hopes have foundered.

The young ladies appear possessed of the same _naïve_, simple, yet
perfectly easy manners which characterise their countrywomen of the
North, where indeed they are principally educated and instructed in all
those graceful accomplishments which embellish and refine our life. It
appears upon a first view strange that, superior as they are, they do
not exercise a greater influence over the youth of the other sex; but
this may be ascribed to the fact, that they are brought out before
either their judgment or knowledge of the world are sufficiently matured
to make them aware of the existence of certain abuses, or of their own
power of reforming them. Then again, marrying very young, they commonly
quit society, in a great measure, at the moment the influence of their
example might be of the greatest service to it.



A TOTAL ECLIPSE OF THE SUN.


_Nov. 30th._--Just entered my room, after having been for the last hour
engaged waiting for, and watching the progress of, one of those
startling phenomena which in the earlier ages were wont to be hailed as
especial manifestations of the Creator's anger,--whose influence has
been known to stay the onset of engaging hosts, making men deaf to the
sound of the trumpet, and dead to the yet more stirring influence of
their own furious passions, when standing armed before the array of
their enemies,--which have been known to scare the robber from his
spoil, and join in renewed amity the hands of long hating brothers.

And even at this day, when natural causes have been assigned for the
appearance of this wonder, and science has learned to anticipate the
minute and the effect of its coming, still, what power does it exercise
over the imagination of the mass! Few minds can watch the progress of
such an event, natural though it be, untouched by awe, unelevated to
that Being who is the cause of all; the hearts of the simple and the
profound, of the sinner and of the saint, alike own the influence of the
hour, and render up nature's involuntary homage to nature's God.

It had been already calculated that at Charleston and in its immediate
vicinity this eclipse would be total; and, consequently, here were drawn
together, from different points, several scientific men, astronomers and
others, for the purpose of observing its progress.

Nothing could have chanced more happily for their object than the
present state of the atmosphere. At meridian the sky was cloudless; the
page of heaven lay open, fair, to all who could read therein: at the
same time the thermometer stood at 75 degrees in the shade; but from
this hour until two P.M., when the obscuration was complete, continued
gradually to fall, remaining stationary at 50 degrees.

As the great luminary became slowly covered, the shadows kept deepening,
until, at last, day was exchanged for the sober effect of moonlight:
thin filmy clouds then became observable, slowly sailing beneath the
diminished orb; one by one the stars came twinkling forth; the household
poultry gathered uneasily together in the yard, and retired to their
roosting-places; the hurrying tread of frequent passers gradually
ceased; the buzz of the thousands of eager watchers died away; the voice
of man was silent, or heard but in whispers, and the profoundest silence
reigned throughout the city; till, at the moment when the interposition
was complete, the bells of the different churches tolled out, adding a
thrilling solemnity to the scene.

At this point of the eclipse the effect was grand beyond description: a
well-defined, narrow circle, of the most brilliant crimson colour,
surrounded for a few moments the darkened orb, which then seemed to
diverge into a glorious halo composed of equal rays: but only for a
minute was this clearly definable; the rays quickly faded from the side
of the luminary once more given to view; and again a soft daylight, like
the gradual spreading of a fine dawn, chased away the night shadows that
had thus prematurely usurped day's fair dominion.

From every quarter was now heard the cheerful crowing of the "early
cock;" the fowls came briskly forth, pluming themselves in the
recovered sunshine; the tramp of numerous passers-by was again echoing
from the street; and again the cheerful buzz of human voices filled the
air.

This was the first time I had ever witnessed a total eclipse; and I
confess I fully shared the general interest with which all about me
appeared inspired. Upon the covered gallery fronting the south, the
inmates of the hotel were all assembled; whilst, in the yard below, were
congregated the servants and household slaves of the family, with
upturned anxious faces, now watching the progress of the phenomenon, and
now casting their eyes upon the group of white men, to gather from their
looks the effect likely to follow this hiding of the sun, in whose
presence the negro alone may be said to live.

Although the recovered luminary shone bright as before its obscuration,
it was with diminished power, for it continued chilly during the rest of
the day and night; nor was it before noon on the 1st of December that
the mercury recovered from its sudden depression.

_Dec. 8th._--The President's message on the subject of the indemnity due
from France to America was received in this city, where it appears to
produce a startling effect: I should say, ten voices out of every eleven
I have heard speak on the subject, deprecate any idea of a rupture with
France. The merchants and travellers of that nation, of whom there are
numbers here, appear somewhat indignant at the tone assumed by the chief
of the government, which they affirm to be insulting to the nation, with
which a Frenchman, in all places, whatever may be his political
sentiments or present condition, never fails completely to identify
himself. This respect for France is a gallant sentiment of theirs, and
shows particularly well when they are far from the country whose honour
they assert, standing a few amongst many.

_Dec. 9th._--I engaged a pilot-boat to run down the coast south as far
as Savannah, which, although some hundred miles out of my line, I had
set down as a place to be seen. My Charleston managers, two worthy
industrious souls, hearing of my route, begged of me to permit them to
take the pilot-boat off my hands for the transport of their company, on
condition that I would halt in Savannah for three or four
representations. To this I was readily moved by their strongly-expressed
desire, and gave up my little schooner, becoming a passenger where I
had looked to reign sole proprietor; the whole thing was arranged in the
course of the day. The wind continued steadily about north-east and by
the evening, the freight, composed of the paraphernalia, was shipped and
stowed; the company assembled; and, after sundry holdings-on for some
music-book forgotten in the orchestra, or some actor left at his
lodging, we in about one hour after the time fixed by the pilot for the
latest minute of tide, slipped the hawsers of the smart little
Washington, and fell off into the stream of ebb.

When we got on the bar, it was almost low-water: the schooner drew eight
feet abaft, and we had just nine feet soundings over the bank; we
cleared all, however, after a minute of some anxiety, owing to there
being a heavy northerly swell setting in, which appeared each moment to
increase.

Once over the bar, we got nearly before the wind with a staggering
breeze, and went along right merrily. Our representative of all the
Juliets and Julias had a pretty voice; the Kemble of the company, a
fine, tall, good-tempered fellow, sang duets and trios well enough for
a tragedian; a chorus was easily mustered out of the remaining members
of the corps who continued fit for duty; and we roused old Ocean with
"When the wind blows," until he became too obstreperous in his
emulation, and fairly drowned our melody.

The wind did blow, at last, in such a sort as to disperse our chorus;
the schooner was about forty tons measurement, sharp as a wedge below,
and not over three feet and a half between decks; the cabin was about
the same square measurement, with two little berths, into which we
stowed the ladies, the managers and the principals occupying the
remaining space; in the hold, over the ballast, the rest of the company
stowed themselves away.

To penetrate either of these close quarters I found utterly impossible:
all were ill save the stout tragedian; comedy, farce, and opera, ballet
and band, the manager, his subjects and his properties, were alike
disorganized and overwhelmed. I resolved therefore on keeping the deck
as I best could, by the help of a stout dread-nought, a pocket-full of
cigars, and a mild infusion of old cognac, provided for me by a
considerate friend.

Within two hours, the wind had gradually increased until it blew a
gale: the foresail was taken in, the mainsail close-reefed, and the
saucy boat flew along before it like a gull, the following seas just
kissing the edge of her taffrail, as she slipped away before them.

Our pilot, the owner of the craft, was a careful and steady old
Bristol-man, but somewhat nervous and timid: his regular crew consisted
of two fine white boys, apprentices, and a couple of stout slaves: we
had, in addition, taken on board an old apprentice of the pilot's, who
as we started had volunteered to accompany his once master. This was a
droll subject, a regular long-sided dare-devil of a South Carolinian: he
was full three sheets in the wind when we sailed, and managed to keep
the steam up by the contributions liberally proffered during our short
season of festivity.

As the gale freshened this fellow showed out; when a sail was to be
handed or a reef taken in, he was a crew in himself; one of the coolest
and smartest fellows I ever met, but somewhat profane in his humour, and
rather hard upon the nerves of the chief: few of his sayings will bear
repetition; but the exaggeration of his figures of speech, the wild
fantastic spirit of reckless humour by which he was governed, I shall
not lose sight of; during the night I supplied him with cigars, and with
his oddness wore away the time. One little bit of dialogue will describe
this wild man of the water better than any words of mine. We had already
taken in two reefs when the pilot gave directions "Stand by to lower
away the peak."

"Ay, ay," sang out his _aide_, as he sprang nimbly to the foot of the
mast; adding, "but what the devil are you going to do now, stranger?"

"Bear a hand!" cried the senior, "take in another reef!"

"What! you're afear'd little Wash-the-water goes through it too fast,
are you, old man?"

"To be sure: I don't want to get off the bar before daylight."

"Don't you? Why then you must tie her fast to a stump, my friend; for if
you let her go ahead, she'll make the light long afore you can see your
way across the bar, between the white water."

"The wind between now and then may slack a little," urged the senior,
looking back over the seas now rolling very high, as though he wished
the time was come.

"Well, that's a cur'ous kind o' guess you've made, any way, old
stranger," laughed his tormentor, clapping his foot against the
companion, and taking the pull of a giant on the reef-tackle as he
spoke. "If you ever know'd where to look for the fag-ind of a
north-easter at this time o' year, it's more nor you ever larn'd me to
do, and that I do say wasn't doin' your honest duty by me. I'd lay a
pistreen this breeze would last the Washy, to the south'ard o' the
Tortugas, and well you know it too."

"Well, suppose it would, I can't help it--what would _you do_, Matthew?
It blows like thunder: I can't tell how fast she's going,--I don't want
to over-shoot the light, and then have to thrash back through such a
smother of a sea."

"Well, now I see what you're at; and it's all right, I guess," observed
Matthew, with affected deference of tone. "I know the varmint's pretty
slick, but I never should ha' thought of her crawling over ninety miles
in four hours:"--it was at this time about midnight. "You ask me what
I'd do; why now I'll tell you, if I was you, I'd say, Mat. here take the
stick,--it wouldn't be the first time,--and I'd crawl out o' that hole
and shake myself; and then I'd ask this gentleman for a cigar and a
mouthful of liquor, and then I'd clap a bit o' the square mainsail on
her, and lift the sloppy little slut out of it a yard or two; that's
what I'd do: and now what have you to say agin it, he?"

"You have a square mainsail in the craft, I suppose?" here inquired I,
by way of taking Matthew off the old man a little.

"Why, I don't know; maybe the old man has had it cut up to make
trousers: but there used to be one when I was in her, and such an
omni-po-tent tearer,--it had a hoist to heaven, it sheeted home to
h--ll, outspread the eternal universe, and would ha' dragged a frigate
seventeen knots through a sea o' treacle, by the living jingo! Why, I've
seen it afore now raise the leetle hooker clean out o' water, and tail
off, with her hanging on, like the boat to a balloon."

With the least possible sail we continued to slip along at a slapping
rate, and long before daylight made the light at the entrance of the
Savannah river: had our pilots known this bar as familiarly as they did
that of Charleston, we might have run in; as it was, we hove-to in a
very heavy sea for upwards of two hours, and the Washington behaved
under these circumstances to admiration; she lay-to like a sea-bird, now
floating buoyant upon the foamy crest of the great seas, then sliding
down their sides into the trough where they would threaten to enclose
her.

The senior pilot never quitted the little square hole sunk over the run,
wherein he stood to steer, although sometimes, when she rolled to
windward and made a dip, the green seas would make a rush over her
quarter, and sweep the deck a foot deep; luckily there was nothing to
hold the water; but for fourteen hours the old man's hand never left the
tiller.

Soon after daylight we once more filled-away, and brought the little
jewel of a boat snugly by-the-wind, hauling in for the bar, although not
without some ugly doubts; for Matthew and the old man could not agree,
and the sea all along in-shore looked plaguy white and ugly as we neared
the low land: however, in we flew, having breakers on either hand, over
near to be pleasant, and in a few minutes, entering the river close by
the wreck of a large brig, were in comparative security.

Our counsel was even now divided about the true channel, until one of
the boys, who had made a couple of trading trips up to the city, took
it upon his own responsibility to read the buoys and landmarks as far
as he knew them. Keeping the lead constantly going, we quietly jogged up
the river with a stiff breeze; the country bleak and bare, a region of
half-redeemed swamp and lagoon: being in smooth water, our party all
turned out; stores were rummaged, and a good breakfast provided upon the
deck of the boat so recently swept by the green seas: the past was
forgotten, the sun shone out, and again the glee and merry song floated
through the air of morning.

Matthew had by this become quite sober, and took his spell at the helm;
admitting, evidently to his senior's satisfaction, that it certainly was
"a real nullifier of a breeze, enough to blow the leetle Washy into
pieces."

About six miles off the city, we got at last set fast; when, growing
impatient of such close confinement, I requested the captain to set me
on shore. The thing was voted impracticable; but I decided to make the
attempt, and was accordingly rowed to the right bank of the river, when
I took to the swamp, hungry and savage enough to have eaten any
alligator fool-hardy enough to assail me. After a hard scramble,
together with two or three plunges waist deep, I escaped suffocation,
and gained one of the banks dividing and draining these vast fields:
following this, unimpeded by other difficulty, I reached, after half an
hour's march, the high land; and, attracted by the sounds of merriment,
mounted the first bluff, where I found a large barn occupied by a couple
of score laughing, noisy negroes employed thrashing out the crop: from
one of these I received directions how to reach Savannah, whose spires
were clearly to be seen.

At the end of about five miles, I found myself an exceeding dirty
gentleman entering upon the long well-shaded mall which protects the
river-front of the city. I was, by this, tolerably tired of my walk; for
the light sandy soil was ankle-deep, and the sun broiling. After passing
one block or range of counting-houses, I gladly read on the first of the
next range the name of a friend from whom I felt certain of welcome.

A capital dinner, and a glass of the finest Madeira in the States, made
light of past labour; and during the evening I was glad to learn that
the Washington had arrived with her freight all safe and well. My friend
Matthew now informed me he had given the boys in the boat directions to
wait for me half an hour, which they did, fully anticipating that I
should never clear the cane-brake and swamp lying between the river and
the fields; and, in sooth, it required some perseverance.



SAVANNAH.


With this little city I was exceedingly pleased. The weather was
remarkably mild, the sun shone brightly; and I took much pleasure in
wandering along the quiet sandy streets, flanked by double rows of the
Pride-of-India tree.

Except the range of buildings immediately facing the river, the
dwellings are nearly all detached; each surrounded by its own offices,
many by a garden filled with orange and other evergreens: they are
mostly built on the true Southern plan, of two stories, with a broad
gallery running entirely round; being of wood and painted white, with
bright green _jalousies_, they give to the streets a gay and lively
look, which is exceedingly cheerful and attractive.

Here are, however, several very ambitious-looking dwellings, built by a
European architect for wealthy merchants during the palmy days of trade;
these are of stone or some composition, showily designed, and very
large, but ill-adapted, I should imagine, for summer residences in this
climate. They are mostly deserted, or let for boarding-houses, and have
that decayed look which is so melancholy, and which nowhere arrives
sooner than in this climate.

Here is a very well designed and well-built theatre, but, like the
houses I speak of, a good deal the worse in consequence of neglect: the
materials and design were, I understood, all imported from England, at a
prodigious cost when the smallness of the population is considered; but
it is now, I fancy, rarely occupied.

On this occasion I had the pleasure of seeing it well filled for the
four nights I acted, and had to regret my time was of necessity so
limited, since my audience was as merry and intelligent as heart could
wish.

My days were passed at the hospitable house of Mr. G----n, where I
encountered many pleasant people; and was attended by the sleekest,
merriest set of negroes imaginable, most of whom had grown old or were
born in their master's house: his own good-humoured, active benevolence
of spirit was reflected in the faces of his servants.

The trade of this port was at one period great; it offered at this time
a cheerful prospect of well-lined quays, and I was glad to learn that
the prospects of the community were again brightening; indeed, the high
prices of produce this year are infusing additional life and spirit into
the whole Southern community: the speculators in cotton are ardent, and
the prices continually on the rise.

On the 15th, left this in a steamer called the George Washington, to
proceed up the Savannah river to Augusta; a distance, by this route, of
rather more than two hundred miles.

I got on board late at night, went immediately to bed, and, on coming on
deck the next morning, found myself in the bosom of a dense forest, the
trees growing as it were out of the very water, and all of them, with
the exception of the gloomy cypress, still thickly covered with their
gay autumnal foliage: numbers of the willow tribe were as fresh and
green as in early springtime, at which season a sail up this river must
be overpoweringly fragrant: even now, although offering little change of
character for two hundred miles, it was not wholly devoid of interest;
for it is constantly upon the wind, the longest reach limiting your
view to a few hundred yards.

Our boat was small and very deeply laden, making hardly four miles an
hour; but she had few passengers, was capitally provisioned, and
possessed an indefatigable and most obliging commander, so that the
tedium consequent upon such a progress had at least no nuisance
superadded to make it more irksome.

Every few miles we brought up to take in a fresh supply of fuel; we were
thus enabled constantly to stretch our legs in the forest; but
throughout the whole distance so exactly similar were most of these
landings that a light-hearted countryman of mine, whose company I was
lucky enough to have, constantly used, on stopping, to say,

"I'd like to be sure we haven't gone back; and that this place is
itself, and not the other."

We went ahead however, though but slowly; and after passing four nights
and three days upon this miniature Mississippi,--for the characteristics
are exactly similar, even to the owls and alligators,--we were safely
landed at Augusta; perhaps, the most enterprising and most thriving
community in Georgia.

By Mr. G----n's recommendation, I proceeded to the Planters' Hotel,
kept by Judge Hales, a kind man and a worthy magistrate; and found that,
in anticipation of my arrival, he had already secured me the earliest
chance for a vacancy on the way-bill for Millidgeville.

Augusta consists of one very wide street, a couple of miles in length,
and composed of a mixed description of building; many of the houses and
stores being of wood, and exceedingly humble in appearance; others are
built of brick, large, handsome, and well fitted up, in emulation of
those in the northern cities; all, however, exhibited evidences of
active and successful trade.

This was the high season for the arrival here of cotton from the
plantations in the interior, whence it is forwarded by the railroad to
Charleston, or down the river to Savannah. The streets were crowded with
planters, and the suburbs with waggons either empty or laden; and these,
together with their hardy drivers and assistants, who camp in all
weathers amidst the forest, make a picture at once interesting in a
commercial point of view, and in itself singularly striking.

As in the smallest American towns, I here met with an excellent bathing
establishment; and found a hot bath, after being mewed up three days on
board the steamer, a most joyous luxury.

The Planters' Hotel afforded an excellent dinner and a good bottle of
sherry; and in the evening the mail-stage arrived, when to my great joy
I was informed my place was safe, although there were many expectants
necessarily left to abide the next stage. At this season of the year the
current setting South is enormous: every stage from the North is laden;
and, once thrown out, a man may have many days to wait before he gets a
chance of proceeding.

_19th._--At six P.M. quitted Augusta, with nine other victims, in a
stage otherwise laden with mail-bags and luggage. About an hour before
we started rain set in, and the weather-wise prognosticate that the fine
season is now at an end for this year. I certainly have no right to
complain, but could desire the rain might yet be postponed for a few
days. The roads were from the start as bad as could be, and the heavy
fall was not likely to improve that part of our route which was to come.

We passed in the course of this night several camps of emigrants, on
the move from the Carolinas and Georgia: they managed to keep their
fires blazing in the forest, in spite of the falling shower;
occasionally might be seen a huge pine crackling and burning throughout
as it lay on the ground, whilst, ranged to windward, stood the waggons
and huts of the campers.

The rich alluvial lands of Alabama, recently belonging to the Indian
reserves, and now on sale by government or through land-speculators, are
attracting thousands of families from the washed-out and impoverished
soil of the older Southern States; and, during this and the preceding
season, the numbers moving along this and the other great lines towards
the South-west are incredible, when viewed in reference to the amount of
population given to the countries whence the emigrants are chiefly
derived.

At a season like the present, the sufferings of these families must be
considerable. The caravan usually consists of from two to four tilt
waggons, long and low-roofed; each laden, first with the needful
provisions and such household gear as may be considered indispensable;
next, over this portion of the freight is stowed the family of the
emigrant planter, his wife, and commonly a round squad of white-haired
children, with their attendants: on the march these vehicles are
preceded and surrounded by the field slaves, varying in numbers from
half a dozen to fifty or sixty, according to the wealth of the
proprietor; a couple of mounted travellers commonly complete the
cavalcade, which moves over these roads at the rate of twelve or fifteen
miles a day. At night, or when the team gives out, or the waggons are
fairly stalled, or set fast, the party prepares to camp: the men cut
down a tree for fire, and with its branches make such rude huts as their
time and ingenuity may best contrive; the females prepare the evening
meal, and perform such domestic duties as may be needful. On these
occasions I have frequently passed amongst or halted by them, and have
been surprised at the air of content and good-humour commonly prevailing
in their rude camps, despite of the apparent discomfort and privation to
which they were exposed.

Many of the negroes, however, I am informed, are exceedingly averse to a
removal from the sites on which they have been bred, and where their
connexions are formed: in these cases, planters who are uncertain of the
personal attachment of their slaves, generally dispose of them amongst
their neighbours: when they are really attached to their owners,
however, there is little difficulty experienced in their removal.

In most of the parties I encountered, I should say, judging fairly by
their deportment and loud merriment, despite the great fatigue and
constant exposure, the affair was taken in a sort of holiday spirit, no
way warranted by their half-naked miserable appearance.

Thus they crawl onward from day to day, for weeks or months, until they
have reached that portion of the forest, or cane-brake, fixed upon for
the plantation: and here the enterprising settler has to encounter new
toil, and a long series of privations, cheered however by the hope,
seldom a delusive one, of ultimate wealth accumulating to the survivors
of the party; for, unhappily, health is the sacrifice, I believe,
generally paid for the possession of the fat soil lying along these
sluggish rivers.

Along the whole line of our route from Augusta in Georgia to the banks
of the Alabama, we found the road covered by parties of this
description; and, according to the opinions of well-informed residents,
with whom I conversed on this subject, not fewer than ten thousand
families have quitted the two Carolinas and Georgia during the course of
this season.

Amongst these families journeying to the land of promise, inspired by
hopes for the future and cheered by the presence of those on whom they
relied for their fulfilment, we now and then met little parties of
broken-men retracing their sad steps toward the homes they had consigned
to strangers: of these, one family, which we encountered camping near
the banks of a swollen river whose bridge we were compelled to repair
before we could cross it, excited deep commiseration. The establishment
consisted of a single covered waggon, a small open cart, and
half-a-dozen slaves, principally women: its conductress was a widow, not
exceeding thirty years of age, having by her side five children, one an
infant.

Within a year after the location of his family on the banks of the
Black-warrior, her husband, we learned, had died; and the widow was thus
far on her way back to Virginia, accompanied by such of her household as
remained to her; this was the 22nd of December, and there yet remained
five hundred miles of her journey unperformed. I know my heart was sore
as I contemplated her forlorn condition, and thought upon the toilsome
way yet dividing her from the changed home she sought.

Between Millidgeville and Macon the route became all but impassable: at
each mile we anticipated a stand-still; the rain was incessant; the
creeks were flooded, and the bridges in an indescribable condition. We
were frequently compelled to alight and walk, being in momentary
expectation of an overturn: and so we journeyed on, our numbers reduced
to six, in order that a lighter vehicle might be adopted. The way in
which this drafting was effected was on principles perfectly fair, and
submitted to without a murmur: at Sparta, the agent informed us that
only six passengers could be taken on; and that, unless we arranged
otherwise, he should strike off the last three names entered in the
way-bill, as being the juniors in this hard service: luckily for me, I
had just the magic three under my name,--a piece of good fortune that
rescued me from a sojourn at Sparta, which, with all due deference to
its venerable name, I could not contemplate without a shudder.

Six hardier or better-humoured men, if I may venture to include myself
in the number, never roughed it through Georgia in company. At one
pass, through a swamp lying a few miles north of Macon, we were turned
out, at a hut where large pieces of light-wood, as the pitch-pine is
called, were procured for the party; from this point we were instructed
to make a cut through the forest, whilst the lightened coach followed
the road. We struck into the line pointed out, guided by one of the
party who had journeyed this road before; and six merrier men, having
less cause for mirth, might not have been found within this fair state.

After floundering along for an hour or so, we saw the torches of the
stage, and heard the halloo of the driver: hence, without mischance, we
reached Macon before daylight; and here one of our company knocked up
through cold and over-weariness; a vacant place was thus afforded for
the judge of the district-court, in whom we found a well-informed and
most intelligent companion.

Nullification was the subject for the morning, and much was advanced
_pro_ and _con._; its opponents being two New York men who had been my
fellow-passengers from Augusta. On this occasion, as I have always
observed amongst Southern men, the right of separation from the Union
was vehemently insisted upon, even whilst the policy of such a movement
was deprecated; the principle, in fact, of nullification was maintained
by those who were against the practice of such an experiment.

The condition of justice upon these wild frontiers was next freely
canvassed, and was on all hands admitted to be weak and short-armed
enough: very few, in truth, seem in criminal cases to seek for or
approve of its interference, except in some so monstrously atrocious
that no sympathy can be felt for the criminal; and even in such cases
his flight, if he condescends to such a movement, is a matter of small
difficulty.

Most of the many murders committed are the result of quarrels or
personal rancour. Jealousy of a favoured rival, a gambling or a
political dispute ends in a defiance, mutual and deadly, the ever-ready
dirk affords present means; or, if the interposition of the bystanders
prevents this, one of the party shoots down the other on the road or at
his own door; when, if the slain man has friends, the feud is adopted by
them, and the first homicide is revenged by another, or several, as may
be. These affrays are by convention termed duels; and, in fact, as on
our borders a century back, each man rights with his own hand his
wrongs "wherever given," in street or forest, in the court of justice or
within the house of prayer.

In the mean time, notwithstanding all this, the frontiers flourish;
trade yearly increases; and, as well as I can learn, civilization and
security also slowly but steadily march onward; but, from the very
nature of the country, it must be long before the wild spirits
congregated here can be subjected to the wholesome rule of
well-administered laws.

At Talboton we found six passengers, the freight of the stage preceding
us, which had been upset in the swamp the night previous; one of them
had a couple of ribs broken, and all were badly bruised. One young man
begged to be taken on the seat of our coach, which was readily
permitted, with cautions against his venturing on such an experiment.
The additional mail-bags were also to be carried forward; and the
largest were accordingly stowed into the coach, in the space usually
considered by passengers as designed for their legs; complaint, however,
was quite useless; those who did not like the conveyance being at full
liberty to wait on any part of the road they might select, until one
better adapted to comfort chanced to come by.

We quitted this place, six men, with just space enough left for us to
crawl in, and we sat, bent almost double, with our legs stretched out
before us. I consoled myself by concluding that we now had reached the
extremity of our inconveniences; but I knew mighty little about the
matter. It would have been impossible, for any length of time, to have
borne the position we were now compressed into; but luckily this was not
expected, since constant occasions were afforded us of stretching our
legs, and getting cool under as heavy rain as the lover of a shower-bath
could desire.



COLUMBUS.


At the hour of two A.M. we reached the city of Columbus, on the
Chattahoochee, the river dividing Alabama from Georgia.

Here we halted for a day and a night; and this time I employed, in
company with my two New York fellow-travellers, in paying a visit to the
Choctaw tribe of Indians, who possess a reserve lying west of the river.

We procured three stout nags, and early in the morning crossed the very
fine bridge which spans this rapid stream close to the falls. On the
Alabama side we found ourselves within a wild-looking village, scattered
through the edge of the forest, bearing the unattractive name of Sodom;
few of its denizens were yet stirring; they are composed chiefly of
"minions o' the moon," outlaws from the neighbouring States. Gamblers,
and other desperate men, here find security from their numbers, and from
the vicinity of a thinly inhabited Indian country, whose people hold
them in terror, yet dare not refuse them a hiding-place. These bold
outlaws, I was informed, occasionally assemble to enjoy an evening's
frolic in Columbus, on which occasions they cross the dividing bridge in
force, all armed to the teeth: the warrants in the hands of the U. S.
Marshal are at such times necessarily suspended, since to execute a
caption would require a muster greater than any within his command. If
unmolested, the party usually proceed to the nearest hotel, drink
deeply, make what purchases they require for the ladies of their colony,
pay promptly, and, gathering the stragglers together, retire peaceably
into the territory, wherein their present rule is by report absolute.
The condition of this near community, and the crimes perpetrated by its
members, were alluded to within the town with a mingled sentiment of
detestation and fear.

A short way within the forest we overtook a man riding a rough pony, of
whom I inquired the best route to be pursued for falling in with the
Indian settlements; the man immediately volunteered to ride with us for
a few hours; adding, that he saw we were strangers from the North; that
he was "a Vermont man himself, and had nothing particular to do just
then."

This was a lucky rencontre: the volunteer guide we thus secured appeared
perfectly familiar with every turn of the numberless narrow footpaths
leading from one location to another; and, under his guidance, we
visited several.

The condition of the majority of these poor people seemed wretched in
the extreme: most of the families were living in wigwams, built of bark
or green boughs, of the frailest and least comfortable construction; not
an article of furniture, except a kettle, was in the possession of this
class. A few, however, were here who had erected log-houses, cleared a
little land, and were also in the possession of a stove or two; we
halted at a group of four of these little dwellings, where, under a
shed, a fine negro wench was occupied frying bacon and making cakes of
wheaten flour for her master's supper, who, she informed us, was absent
on a hunting expedition. Within the log-huts sat the squaws of the
party, all busily employed sewing beads on moccasins, or ornamenting
deer-skin pouches, after the fashion of the dames of old in the absence
of their true knights; our guide addressed these ladies roughly enough;
but without eliciting any reply more encouraging than a sort of "Ugh!
ugh!" unaccompanied by a single look. The negro girl, however, had not
adopted the taciturnity of the tribe, but readily chatted with us,
explaining, amongst other matters, the nature of the contents of the
boiler, whose savoury smell greatly attracted our attention. She said it
was composed of Indian corn, boiled a great deal and slowly, with only a
little salt for seasoning; affirming, that the Indians preferred this
simple dish to all other dainties. For myself, I gave a decided vote in
favour of the fried rashers, and the nice little cakes baked in the
ashes: of these we partook freely, at the solicitation of the
good-humoured cook, who, with right Indian hospitality, assured us there
was plenty more.

Returning, we encountered several members of this tribe who had been
passing the day in Columbus; some were on foot, others riding, but all
more or less elevated; a few of the women were good-looking, and, to
their credit, all of them sober.

As we repassed Sodom, the sound of revelry proclaimed the orgies
resumed. The rain, which had hitherto held up, once more began to
descend with a determination of purpose that boded us no good: we
spurred over the covered bridge, and were soon after housed again in
Georgia.

At our hotel I encountered a gentleman who, a few weeks before, had been
a fellow-passenger with me from New York to Charleston; but his advance
had been less prosperous than mine: indeed, a brief relation of what he
had endured sufficed to reconcile me to any little fatigue that fell to
my lot. It appeared that, three weeks previous to this meeting of ours,
he had quitted Columbus in a steamer going down to Appalachicola: they
had proceeded some three hundred miles on their way, when, in the night,
the passengers were roused from sleep by the alarm of "fire!" The boat
was, in fact, a mass of flame by the time the first persons reached the
deck. My informant, with many others, immediately jumped overboard: the
steamer was run on the bank; and, with the exception of two persons
drowned, the rest of her passengers and crew were landed in the forest;
most of them with nothing in the shape of covering excepting their
night-clothes. Luckily, there were only two ladies of the party; and
their condition may be imagined, living for four days in the forest
swamp without other than temporary huts for shelter, and in all other
respects most scantily provided for, as the suddenness of the fire
prevented any saving of stores or provisions.

At the end of four days the up-river steamer was hailed on its passing,
and, getting on board of this, they were in a few days after landed
where I found my informant waiting for the next boat. It appeared that
the fire was attributed to a slave who had been the day before flogged
for mutiny, and who, according to the evidence of his fellows, had
threatened some such revenge.

During the afternoon I walked about this thriving frontier town, despite
a smart shower: the stores were well supplied, the warehouses filled
with cotton, and in all quarters were groups of the neighbouring
planters busied in looking after the sale of their produce, and making
such purchases as their families required.

Numerous parties of Indians,--Creeks and Choctaws,--roamed about from
place to place, mostly drunk, or seeking to become so as quickly as
possible: with each party of the natives I observed a negro-man, the
slave of some one present, but commonly well dressed in the European
manner, having an air of superior intelligence to his masters, and
evidently exercising over them the power and influence derived from
superior knowledge: the negroes, in fact, appeared the masters, and the
red-men the slaves.

Along the river-front of the town, a situation wildly beautiful, I
observed several dwellings of mansion-like proportions, and others of a
similar character in progress. I should say, that nowhere in this South
country have I yet seen a place which promises more of the prosperity
increasing wealth can bestow than this; or one that, from all I learned,
is more wanting in all that men usually consider most worth
possessing,--personal security, reasonable comfort, and well-executed
law. In place of these, affrays ending in blood are said to be frequent,
apprehensions few, acquittal next to certain even in the event of trial,
and the execution of a white man a thing unknown.

In the midst of all this, be it understood, I do not consider that a
traveller runs the least risk; robbery, or murder for the sake of mere
plunder, never occurs; and to a stranger the rudest of these frontier
spirits are usually exceedingly civil; but idleness, hot blood, and
frequent stimulants make gambling or politics ready subjects for
quarrels, and, as the parties always go armed, an affray is commonly
fatal to some of those concerned.

As the population steadily advances, these wild spirits melt away before
it, some becoming good citizens, others clearing out before the onward
march of civilization: their sway is therefore yearly decreasing in
force within the States, their sphere becoming limited in proportion as
persons interested in the support of law increase; already, each season,
numbers seek freedom from restraint within the Mexican territory, where
an infusion of such blood will be productive of strange events in Texas;
and if this fine territory be not, within a very short period, rendered
over-hot a berth for its Mexican proprietors, "coming events cast their
shadows before" to very little purpose.



TRAVELLING THROUGH THE CREEK-NATION.


THE ALABAMA RIVER DOWN TO MOBILE.


A little before midnight, my two New York _compagnons du voyage_ and
myself took our seats in the mail for Montgomery, on the Alabama river.
We found ourselves the sole occupants of the vehicle, and were
congratulating each other on the chance, when we heard directions given
to the driver to halt at Sodom, for the purpose of taking up a gentleman
and his lady,--_Anglice_, a gambler and his mistress.

It was dark as pitch and raining hard when we set out: a few minutes
found us rumbling along the enclosed bridge, amidst the mingled roar of
the rain, our wheels, and the neighbouring falls: the flood passing
below us had in the course of the last ten hours risen nearly twenty
feet; its rush was awful.

At one of the first houses in the redoubtable border village the stage
halted, and a couple of trunks were added to our load; next, a female
was handed into the coach, followed by her protector. The proportions of
neither could at this time be more than guessed at; and not one syllable
was exchanged by any of the parties. In a few minutes we were again
under weigh, and plunging through the forest.

We reached Fort-Mitchell about daylight, where formerly a considerable
garrison was kept up: the post is now, however, abandoned. Here an
unanticipated treat awaited us, for we were compelled to leave our, by
this time, tolerably warm stage, for one fairly saturated with the rain
that had fallen during the night. Our luggage was pitched into the mud
by the coachman, who had only one assistant; so we were fain to lend a
hand, instead of standing shivering by, until the trunks were fished
out, and disposed of on the new stage. A delay here of an hour and a
half enabled me, however, to stroll back, and take a look at the
deserted barrack. By this time too the day was well out; the sky broke
with a more cheerful look than for some days back had favoured us, and
was hailed by us all with great pleasure.

I prepared my 'baccy, and climbed on to the box by the driver, resolute
to hold on there as long as possible. For five hours we got along at the
rate of four miles an hour, through a forest of pine growing out of a
sandy soil, without any undergrowth whatever,--the trees of the noblest
height, and just so far apart that horsemen might have galloped in any
direction without difficulty. Our driver was a lively intelligent young
fellow, having a civil word of inquiry or of greeting for every Indian
we encountered: these were by no means numerous however, and they seldom
replied by more than a monosyllable, hardly appearing to notice our
passage.

The country was in general slightly undulating, but now and then we came
to places where I considered us fairly pounded, so abrupt were the
declivities and so deep the mud. There are few persons certainly called
on for a more frequent display of pluck and coolness than these drivers;
I should like some of our flash dragsmen to see one or two bits we got
through on this road; not that any mile of it would be considered
passable by Pickford's vans, in the condition it was at this season.

We halted for a late breakfast at a solitary log-tavern kept by
Americans, where we were received with infinite civility, and where the
lady of the _auberge_ was inclined to be amiable and communicative,--not
an every-day rencontre in these parts. She informed me that the means
they could command for the mere necessaries of living were very limited;
that butcher's meat was only attainable at Columbus, and that any
attempt to rear a stock of poultry was ridiculous, as the Indians of the
country invariably stole every feather.

I congratulated her upon the late arrangements of Government, which
afforded her the prospect of speedily being rid of these neighbours; but
she seemed to think the day of departure was still far distant, not over
five hundred having as yet availed themselves of the offers held out to
them, although the greater number of those remaining in the country had
already disposed of their allotments to speculators and dissipated the
money they had received for their land; having neglected to plant an ear
of corn, or prepare the least provision for the present winter,--an
improvidence of character peculiar to the natives, and which it was, she
said, impossible to guard against without depriving them of all
free-agency. Many, as she assured me, of these wretched people were at
this time suffering from extreme want, and thousands were fast hastening
to the like condition, when, unless aided by Government, they must steal
or starve.

This poor couple had, as they told me, dwelt in the Indian nation for
the last seven years: they seemed decent, industrious folk, yet their
habitation bore few marks of growing comfort; the interstices between
the logs were unfilled, through these the wind and rain had both free
ingress. Their hope, I imagine, was to secure a good allotment of land
amongst the improvident sales made by the Indians: they said the place
was a good one, and tolerably healthy, excepting in spring and fall;
judging by the looks of the family, I should, however, take their
estimation of health to be a very low one.

After breakfast the driver made his appearance, and desired us to come
down to the stable and fix ourselves as well as we could on the _Box_.
Conceiving he alluded to me, I asked if the stage was ready, but
received for reply an assurance that it was not intended the stage
should be any longer employed on the service; but that, by the agent's
order, the _Box_ was to be taken on from this point, and that those
that liked might go on with it, and those that did not might stay
behind.

This was pleasant, but all appeared desirous of trying the _Box_. I
confess that a mail conveyance bearing a name so novel excited my
curiosity; so, sallying forth, I walked down to the starting-place,
where, ready-harnessed and loaded, stood literally the _Box_, made of
rough fir plank, eight feet long by three feet wide, with sides two feet
deep: it was fixed firmly on an ordinary coach-axle, with pole, &c. The
mails and luggage filled the box to overflowing, and on the top of all
we were left to, as the driver said, "fix our four quarters in as leetle
time as possible."

Now this fixing, in any other part of the globe, would have been deemed
an impossibility by persons who were paying for a mail conveyance; but
in this spot we knew redress was out of the question--the choice lay
between the Box and the forest. We, however, enjoyed the travellers'
privilege,--grumbled loudly, cursed all scoundrel stage-agents, who
"keep the word of promise to the ear and break it to the hope:" we next
laughed at our unavailing ill-humour, which the driver bore with the
calmness of a stoic, and finally disposed of our persons as we best
could; not the least care having been taken in the disposition of the
luggage, our sole care, in fact, was to guard against being jolted off
by the movement of the machine; any disposition in favour of ease or
comfort was quite out of the question.

During the change, our female companion and her proprietor had walked
on; and these were yet to be provided for; however, the sun shone
brightly; and we found a subject for congratulation in the fact that
rain was not likely to be superadded to our miseries. Short-sighted
rogues that we are! What a blessing is it, a knowledge of the evils to
come is not permitted to cloud our enjoyments in possession! Crack went
the whip. "Hold on with your claws and teeth!" cried the driver; the
latter, we found, were only to be kept in the jaws by compression: for
the former, we had immediate occasion; our first movement unshipped a
trunk and carpetbag, together with the band-box of our fair
passenger--the latter was crushed flat beneath the trunk, and its
contents scattered about the way: exposed to the gaze of the profane,
lay the whole _materiel_ of the toilet of this fair maiden of Sodom. We
gathered up a lace cap; ditto of cambric; six love epistles, directed to
the lady in as many different hands; a musk-box, and several other
indescribable articles; together with an ivory-hilted dagger, of
formidable proportions, a little sullied, like the maiden's honour, but
sharp as a needle. Of the articles enumerated we made a bundle, leaving
the shattered band-box on the road. I took the precaution to roll the
several billets up in the cambric cap, "guessing" they were not intended
for the Colonel's eyes; for so was our male companion styled by the
driver.

When we overtook the pair, we made every exertion to dispose of the poor
girl, at least securely; who, in truth, merited our cares by the
cheerful and uncomplaining spirit she evinced under circumstances full
of peril, and ill to bear for the hardiest frame.

Wherever the way permitted a quicker pace than a walk, our condition was
really _pénible_ to a degree; luckily, this did not arrive often, or
last long: to crawl at a snail-pace through the mud was now a relief,
since one could retain one's seat without straining every muscle to hold
on.

Thus we progressed till the evening advanced, when the clouds gathered
thick, and then began to roll towards the north-west in dark threatening
masses, right in the teeth of a brisk, fitful breeze.

"We'll get it presently," observed our driver, eyeing the drift; "hot as
mush, and 'most as thick, by the looks on 't."

All at once the wind lulled; then it shifted round to the south-east,
and blew out in heavy gusts that bent the tall pines together like
rushes: upon this change, lightning quickly followed, playing in the
distance about the edge of the darkening horizon. For about two hours we
were favoured with these premonitory symptoms, and thus allowed ample
time for conjecture as to the probable violence of the storm in active
preparation.

Some of our Box crew decided as they desired, that it would pass away in
threatenings only; others, that all this heralding would be followed by
a violent storm, or perhaps by a hurricane. It now occurred to me that,
in moments of enthusiasm, encouraged by security, I had expressed myself
desirous of witnessing the wild charge of a furious hurricane on the
thick ranks of the forest. I confess, however, that, having within the
last twenty-four hours witnessed its effects, this desire was
considerably abated. With the probable approach of the event, my ardour,
like Acres's courage, "oozed away;" and the prospect of such a
visitation, whilst exposed on the _Box_, became the reverse of pleasant.

In this uncertainty I resolved to consult our driver's experience; so,
coming boldly to the point, demanded,

"I say, driver, do you calculate that we shall be caught in a
hurricane?"

"I'll tell you how that'll be exact," replied our oracle: "If the rain
comes down pretty, we shan't have no hurricane; if it holds up dry, why,
we shall."

Henceforth never did ducks pray more devoutly for rain than did the crew
of the _Box_, although without hope or thought of shelter; but, on the
contrary, with every possible chance of a break-down or upset, which
would have made the forest our bed, but stripped of the "Leaves so
green, O!" about which your ballad-mongers love to sing, with their toes
over the fender, and the hail pattering melodiously upon the pantiles.
At last, our prayers were heard; and we all, I believe, breathed more
freely as the gates of the sky opened, and the falling flood subdued and
stilled the hot wind whose heavy gusts rushing among the pines had been
the reverse of musical.

The thunder-clouds, hitherto confined to the southern horizon, now
closed down upon the forest, deepening its already darkness: at a
snail's pace we still proceeded, and luckily found an Indian party
encamped close by a sort of bridge lying across a swamp it would have
been impossible, as the driver assured us, to have crossed without a
good light.

From this party we not only procured a large supply of excellent
light-wood, but one of the men heartily volunteered to carry a bundle of
it, and act as guide; the squaw of the good fellow was in a violent rage
with her man for this courtesy, but he bore her ridicule and reviling
with perfect composure. Each of our party carried in his hand a large
sliver of this invaluable wood; and, thus prepared, marched in front of
the Box across this bridge, almost as ticklish as the single hair
leading to Mahomet's heaven: it was a quarter of a mile in length,
unguarded by a rail or bulwark of the slightest kind, but generally
overhung by the rank growth of the jungle through which it was laid.

My New York companions and I had out-walked the Box; but when about
half-way across, the rain extinguished our torches, which were rather
too slight for the service, when, as we had perceived in our course that
many of the planks were unshipped or full of holes, we thought it best
to halt for the coming up of our baggage.

I can never forget the effect produced by the blaze of the huge bundle
of light-wood borne aloft by our Creek guide: I entirely lost sight of
the discomfort of our condition in the pleasure I derived from the whole
scene.

Let the reader imagine a figure dressed in a deep-yellow shirt reaching
barely to the knees, the legs naked; a belt of scarlet wampum about the
loins, and a crimson and dark-blue shawl twisted turban-fashion round
the head; with locks of black coarse hair streaming from under this, and
falling loose over the neck or face: fancy one half of such a figure
lighted up by a very strong blaze, marking the nimble tread, the swart
cold features, sparkling eye, and outstretched muscular arms of the
red-man,--the other half, meantime, being in the blackest possible
shadow: whilst following close behind, just perceptible through wreaths
of thick smoke, moved the heads of the leading horses; and, over all,
flashed at frequent intervals red vivid lightning; one moment breaking
forth in a wide sheet, as though an overcharged cloud had burst at once
asunder; the next, descending in zigzag lines, or darting through
amongst the tall pines and cypress trees; whilst the quick patter of the
horses' hoofs were for a time heard loudly rattling over the loose
hollow planks, and then again drowned wholly by the crash of near
thunder.

Never in my life have I looked upon a scene which holds so vivid a place
within my memory: the savage solitude of the jungle, the violence of the
storm, together with the pictorial accessories by which the whole
picture was kept in movement, fixed the attention, and can never, I
think, be forgotten by those who witnessed it.

Having cleared the swamp, we took our places on the Box, still lighted
by our friendly Creek; and in about half an hour gained the log-house
where the mail agent to whose considerate order we owed our change of
vehicle, and consequent added discomfort, dwelt: here, however, a clean
comfortable meal of tea, chops, fowls, and hot bread of every
denomination, awaited us.

My first movement on jumping off the Box was to lay hands on the Indian
guide, and to proffer to him a flask of cognac, which had proved of
singular comfort to the party: to my great surprise, he at once declined
tasting it; smiling and pointing his finger to his forehead, he gravely
repeated half a dozen words, which a by-stander of the nation readily
translated to mean,--"Whisky water make man not eat,--bad for sore
head."

I agreed with this as a general rule, but at the same time begged my
Creek to look on old brandy as an exception, when used medicinally; this
being duly interpreted, the Indian laughed heartily, but abided by his
rejection of the consolation. During our parley he took the red and blue
shawl from off his head, wrung it as dry as possible, refolded it, and
then adjusted his turban with infinite care, preparing forthwith to be
gone: he did not depart without a slight gratuity, and took with him our
best wishes. This was a fine open-countenanced fellow, middle-sized, and
firmly built; he was, in fact, one of the few really good-looking
aborigines I have met. As he was departing from the house, I asked if he
did not require a bundle of light-wood to show him his road home; he
laughed, and replied, "No, he was no waggon; no fear of him falling into
the swamp."

Away he dashed into the mud at a quick trot, with bent knees and folded
arms, anxious, I fancied, to appease his squaw; since it was contrary to
her desire that he had ventured on this service, and not, as the
coachman assured us, without receiving much abuse for his foolishness,
as his "gentle ladye" termed this courtesy.

Here we learned that the mail preceding us had been overturned into a
stream from off the bridge we had next to pass, and lay there yet;
luckily no passenger was in it at the time: our new driver added, that
he had no expectations of getting the coach through, but he was bound to
try. So wearied were we, that any or all of the party would have been
well contented to stay here; but no place could be given us to sleep in,
and until the next coach passed, no means could be procured to forward
us to Montgomery; we had no choice therefore but to push on with the
mail and meet our fortune.

From this hour, midnight, until daylight, we were generally on foot;
the driver in one or two instances refusing to advance until even the
poor girl got out, assuring us that he would not hazard the young
woman's life, however hard it was for her to face the night and the
roads, frequently over knee-deep.

We had a plentiful supply of fire-wood: we were able, and, I will add,
willing men; and by dint of great personal exertion, added to an
excellent team, and a judicious driver, we brought the coach through all
difficulties, arriving at Montgomery at six in the morning: thus
completing a journey of ninety miles in thirty-two hours; and having
paid well to be permitted to assist in getting the mail-bag through
roads which, for the next few days, remained, I believe, utterly
impassable, even under the circumstances I have here attempted to
describe.

At Montgomery we found a wretched inn, with no possibility of procuring
anything save liquor; but we had the good luck to learn that in a couple
of hours a steam-boat was departing for Mobile, down the Alabama: we
gave up the stage therefore, and sallied out of this den of a hotel for
the steamer Carolina. This movement was lucky, as the stage-route to
Mobile was, as I afterwards learned, as bad as the worst we had come
through; all the late coaches had met with accidents, and the added rain
of the last twenty-four hours would, it was presumed, render it
impassable.

I was so wearied that I saw little of this place but a muddy river,
whose banks were strewn with bales of cotton awaiting the means of
transport. I could hardly keep my eyes open till I had swallowed my
breakfast: a clean-looking berth was assigned me, and, turning in, I
remained oblivious to the world and its cares until after noon of the
following day, when I awoke fresh as a bird and hungry as an ostrich. I
was told several attempts had been made to rouse me, but they were
unavailing; I answered, but slept on: for my own part, of this
twenty-four hours of life I protest utter unconsciousness. I found that
I had slept faster than the boat had progressed, for we were but fifty
miles off our starting-place, having a certain portion of freight to
take in at each plantation, according to previous engagements.

Down this noble stream we journeyed for four days and nights; in clear
weather making tolerably good way, but often compelled by thick fogs
and drift timber to lay our ship alongside the forest, and make fast to
some large tree. Occasionally the stream would cant our head suddenly,
and, before the helm could be shifted, rush we went right stem on into
the nearest grove of willows, with such a crashing and rattling as made
one wonder at first what the deuce was the row. In one instance, whilst
at dinner, a huge branch burst open a side door, and nearly impaled a
French conjurer of celebrity on his way to New Orleans. We were nearly a
hundred souls on board, and each day our limits grew more and more
circumscribed; for the side galleries were filled in with bales of
cotton, the windows blocked up, at last the very doorways, all but one:
lights were burned in the cabin day and night: the Carolina became, in
fact, a floating mass of cotton, which, had the season been dry, one
unlucky spark might have set in a blaze--an accident by no means
unknown; luckily, the rain continued to fall more or less daily, as is
usual at this season.

Our passengers were principally composed of the planters whose cotton
had already been shipped; they were a rough but merry set of fellows,
and many of them exceedingly intelligent; kinder or better-disposed men
I never met: for their own health's sake I could have desired to see the
bar less prosperous; their visits to that quarter were over frequent:
not that an instance of inebriety occurred on board, but the stimulant,
together with the quantity of tobacco they use, must, I am sure, be
ruinous to both health and enjoyment. I found most of them complaining
of dyspepsia, but had much difficulty to induce them to admit the
possibility of their own habits being at least as much the cause as the
climate.

The cotton-grounds along the whole cultivated line of this river are
rich beyond conception; fields of a mile square were here just picked,
and yet white as snow from the after-growth. Many of them would have
been worth re-picking had hands been procurable; on every side fresh
clearings are going on, and the produce next season will be greatly
increased in consequence of the stimulus derived from the high prices of
this year.

A night scene, whilst lying beneath some of the noble bluffs towering
above the river, was often worthy the delay we paid for it. One or two
of these heights were two hundred feet perpendicular, or nearly so:
from the summit there is laid down in a slanting direction a slide or
trough of timber, wide enough to admit of the passage of a cotton bale;
at the bottom of the bluff this slide rests upon a platform of loose
planks, alongside of which the boat is moored; the cotton-bag is guided
into the slide at top, and thence, being launched, is left to find its
own way to the bottom; if it keeps the slide until it strikes the
platform, communicating with the vessel by a plane inclined according to
circumstances, it is carried on board by its own impetus and the spring
of the planks; but it often chances that through meeting a slight
inequality on the slide, or from some unknown cause, the bale bounces
off in its passage, either sticking amongst the trees by the way, or
rolling headlong into the river. At any jutting intermediate stand of
the precipice, negroes are stationed to keep up the huge fires which
afford light for the operation, as well as to forward such bales as may
stick by the run: these black half-naked devils, suspended in midair as
it were, laughing, yelling, or giving to each other confused directions,
make the forest ring to the water's edge; whilst through this occasional
din swells the wild chorus of the men upon the summit, who are
regularly engaged rolling the bales from the near barn to the slide.

Add to all, the hissing sound of the spare steam, the blaze of the great
fires, and the crackling of the trees which feed them, with the many
strange figures presented on all sides,--and a wilder grouping
imagination cannot well conceive.

At Clairborne, an elevation rising boldly from the river at least three
hundred feet, we took in the last bale of cotton the Carolina could
stow: the water was now level with her gunwale; indeed, amidships it was
flowing over. We had still one hundred and fifty miles to perform of our
journey in darkness, with upwards of a thousand bales of cotton on
board: such a strange motley scene as our cabin presented at bed-time it
would be hard to describe; our provisions held out pretty well however,
and all were disposed good-humouredly to bear our lot with Christian
patience.

_Tuesday, Dec. 30th._--We reached Mobile, having come five hundred miles
down the Alabama since Christmas-day. Upon inquiry for our mail, I found
it was still due, as well as the two immediately preceding it; I had,
therefore, lost no time by making choice of the Carolina, and had
possibly escaped broken bones: the distance by land, I ought to observe,
is from Montgomery only about one hundred miles.

I here was received by my friends, H----n and M----e; and on this day,
at the house of the latter gentleman, once more sat down to a truly
comfortable dinner, in company with our worthy Consul, and a few other
gentlemen. I was detained here for two days, there being no steamer
going across the lake to New Orleans: these two days were passed most
delightfully, driving Mr. H----n about the beautiful forest paths which
surround this city; the weather was divine, and flowers of great beauty
yet in abundance.

The evening of the 31st I passed with Mrs. B----r, where in a glass of
good poteen we drank a good bye to the year 1834, and a welcome to the
stranger.



JOURNAL.


_January 1st, 1835._--Still detained at Mobile: the sun shines
powerfully, and the sky is pure and clear. After breakfast lounged about
the very clean streets of this pretty city; then procured a neat
turn-out, and drove Mr. H----n, he acting as pilot, as far as Choctaw
Point, whence we had an extensive view of the Bay of Mobile with the
south-west coast of Florida. Our way lay through a forest of pine and
oak; many little rivulets crossed our path, the sides of which were
decked by a hundred different shrubs and plants, from the magnificent
grandiflora, here growing eighteen and twenty feet high, to the lowly
rose: the vegetation is rich, winter though it is; the beauty of the
spring amongst these noble woods I can only imagine at present, but
hope, before I again look northward, to know more of that season.

The presence of the ghostly-looking cedar, with its funereal draperies
of unwholesome moss, so common throughout Carolina and Georgia, is here
unknown; the forest is a series of regular avenues pillared by the
loftiest pines; and there is no undergrowth, except in little dingles
through which a brook may creep its way: the rides in this vicinity are
therefore most attractive. At one point during our ramble we suddenly
came to an abrupt sandy hill, at whose foot ran a sparkling little
rivulet, in the midst of which one of the aborigines stood in a state of
nature, raising water in the hollow of a gourd, and laving with it his
coal-black shining hair. As we descended, he stood erect and looked
towards us, but without exhibiting the least symptom of either surprise
or embarrassment: his form was light but perfectly proportioned, with
small thorough-bred knees and feet; he looked like a new bronze cast
from the antique: the graceful repose of the attitude he maintained
during our approach was perfect. Mr. H----n asked him if he was Choctaw;
he replied to the question by a slow nod of the head and a brief 'yah!'

Continuing our ride along the sea-bank, we arrived at a large
establishment where oil is extracted from the seed of the cotton-plant:
this is a recent discovery, and likely to prove a most profitable one
to the proprietors of this mill.

In the afternoon, accompanied Mr. H----n to the northern extremity of
the city, where we found broad streets already marked out: plunging deep
into the forest, many scattered houses of brick were springing up on
sites where barely trees enough had been cut down to afford elbow-room
for the builders.

_January 2nd._--Quitted Mobile on the box of the mail for Portersville:
our way lay over Spring Hill and through the Pine-barren; the road was a
track cleared by the woodman's axe; the stumps were not as yet
macadamized by time, still the horses picked their way amongst them at a
very fair pace. At a single log-house, situated about mid-way, we pulled
up to change horses; here too I perceived, by the array of a table
placed in the open hall, dinner was provided. On my asking the landlord,
who was a countryman, how soon dinner would be ready, he replied with a
friendly confidential air, "Almost immediately, but unless you're cruel
sharp-set, I'd recommend _you_ not to mind it, sir."

I took the hint thus disinterestedly given, and walked forward, passing
over one of the primitive bridges common in this section of the
country, where swamps and watercourses are frequent; these are commonly
overlaid also, as far as may be necessary, by a back-wood railway; that
is, by trunks of trees packed closely side by side, over which the
machine is dragged at a trot: in Canada this sort of road is termed a
corduroy.

Half an hour's start of our mail, whose pace was not over five or six
miles per hour, enabled me to prolong my walk as far as I chose, and I
enjoyed my freedom greatly; the perfect solitude of the scene; the
absence of all trace of man, excepting the one narrow and seemingly
interminable track, whose unvarying line might be traced as far as eye
could reach; not a sound could be heard, only the low sighing of the
breeze as it swept over the ocean of graceful pines whose spiry heads
appeared to kiss the sky. In ten minutes after quitting the log-hut
where the coach rested, I was in fact plunged in a solitude as complete
as it was beguiling.

If you by any chance turned about to look back upon the line you had
trod, or muse upon the scene, the only remembrance of your true course
was the sun; and indeed more than once, as time wore on, did I halt
struck with a sudden apprehension that I might have turned upon my
steps, and it required some moments of consideration to reassure me. At
length, seating myself upon a fallen pine within the shadow of a tall
magnolia, I resolved to abide with patience the coming up of the coach.

Resting here, strange fancies connected with the forest and its savage
denizens came thronging upon my mind. Here, within a very few years, the
Choctaw alone had wandered, and the only path was the scarce traceable
line leading to the village of his tribe. Where are these hunters now?
gone swiftly away, borne like autumn's leaves, upon the irrepressible
flood of enterprise and intelligence which is taming the wilderness with
a rapidity Europe has yet no adequate appreciation of. The hunter and
his prey have alike been scattered or rooted wholly out; the forest
still remains to witness for their existence, and, although assailed in
every quarter, the woodman's axe ringing from east to west, from north
to south, it yet appears to defy the activity of its assailants.

So rapid is vegetation in this climate, so prompt is Nature to repair
any waste in this favoured domain of hers, that even where places have
been completely bared by the axe or by the whirlwind, a very few years
of repose clothes them once more, a luxuriant growth of forest, vigorous
and healthful, spreads rapidly over the waste, asserting its ancient
claim, and eagerly repossessing itself of its heritage.

We reached Portersville at four o'clock, having been just six hours
coming thirty-two miles: here we found the Government steamer, the
Watchman, and five passengers, who had left Mobile on the 31st ultimo.
They had been detained here two days, living in a log-house; their only
amusement watching the ducks and snipe whirling in search of fresh
feeding-ground over the dreary waters of Lac Pontchartrain.

Over a long fragile pier, carried far into the lake on piles, and
breached in fifty places, we gained the deck of the Watchman, and in
five minutes after were heading towards the setting sun, whose rays,
brilliant though they were, failed to invest with cheerfulness this
desolate, half-drowned land.

I walked to and fro upon the ample deck of the vessel until my limbs
were fatigued and my eyes sick of the eternal sameness of the scene;
and then sought my berth, a very comfortable one, where I lay till
roused next morning with the intelligence that we were before the
railroad.

_Jan. 3rd._--On landing, we found the six o'clock train had just
departed; we were afforded therefore half an hour to look about us. Here
is a very large hotel, during the summer much frequented by the citizens
of New Orleans, the offices connected with the railroad depôt, three or
four little stores, together with a small range of dirty huts, including
two or three cut-throat-looking sheds, bearing inscribed over the
entrance, in large, ill-assorted characters, the word _Tire_; which
immediately under is translated, for the benefit of country gentlemen,
into "_Shutting Galery_." These little indications serve to remind the
stranger that he is now in the land of the "_duello_," where each
"captain of compliments" is reputed for "the very butcher of a silk
button," and "fights as you sing prick-song,--rests me his minim rest,
one, two, and the third in your bosom."

In little more than half an hour the cars returned from the city, and in
about thirty minutes we were whirled under the covered depôt, where I
was fortunate enough to get a hackney-coach, in which I proceeded at
once to Mr. H----n's house in _Rue Bourgogne_, where I was received by
his nephews with a heartiness of welcome that made me in one moment feel
that I was at home.

The whole of this day was cloudy and cold; a good deal of rain had
fallen during the night, and consequently the streets were nearly
impassable for carriages: the side-walks were, however, very well kept;
and I took a short stroll about the American quarter, finding on my
return that already, with the prompt courtesy which distinguishes this
country, several gentlemen had left cards of compliment and invitation.

_Sunday, 4th._--A lovely day. Mr. B----e having planned a ride as far as
the lake, I saw after breakfast three or four good-looking horses
arrive, caparisoned with showy, coloured, housings and _demi-pique_
Spanish saddles: shortly after, their masters appeared, and off we
pushed through mud knee-deep; we soon gained the shell road however, and
found it as good as the streets of Mobile, hard, smooth, and binding as
lime. It is a pity, as this material is to be procured in abundance,
that it is not more generally applied: paving the streets with heavy
stones, which soon sink deep in the alluvial soil, is, I fear, likely,
without vast outlay, to prove labour lost; besides that these have to be
imported from the North or from England, not a pebble existing here over
the whole surface of the country.

At five o'clock, met a large party at dinner at Mr. B----'s; Madame
B----e, a lady of the country, doing the honours with that vivacity and
grace which is said to distinguish the French creoles of New Orleans:
the dinner was excellent, a mixture of English and French cooking, both
good, and admirably served; whilst for wines, we had Chateau Margarot of
1825, with frozen champagne, and Madeira, such as can only be produced
in this country. The dinner party, with the exception of a couple of
creole French gentlemen, was composed of my own countrymen; and little
was here to remind one of a strange land, save the plates of clear ice
sparkling on the table, and the faces of ebony shining behind our
chairs.



NEW ORLEANS.


AMERICAN THEATRE.


On Monday the 5th I attended rehearsal at the American Theatre, and was
pleased to find it a large, well-proportioned house, with three rows of
boxes, a pit, or _parquette_, as it is termed, subdivided as in the
French Theatre: each seat is numbered, and, being taken at the
box-office, is secured to the purchaser for any part of the evening. The
company was a very tolerable one; and in the person of a nephew of Mr.
W. Farren's, I found an adjunct of much importance to me--an excellent
old man.

My next anxiety was about my audience, not its numbers, as I was assured
every seat in the house was disposed of, and this as far as could be
allowed, for every night I might perform; but I felt solicitous with
respect to its character and composition, of which I had received very
discouraging reports. I kept however my apprehensions to myself,
resolved to do my best after my own fashion, and abide the result as I
best might.

On Tuesday I made my _début_; and never was man more agreeably surprised
than myself when, after making my bow, I for the first time took a rapid
survey of the aspect of the house: the _parquette_ and dress-boxes were
almost exclusively filled by ladies, _coiffées_ with the taste which
distinguishes Frenchwomen in every country, and which becomes peculiarly
striking here, where are to be seen the finest heads of dark hair in the
world; many wore bonnets of the latest Parisian fashion, and all were
more dressed than it is usual to be at theatres in America. This
attention to costume on the part of the ladies, added to their occupying
the pit, obliges the gentlemen to adopt a correspondent neatness; and
hence it occurs that, when the New Orleans theatre is attended by the
belles of the city, it presents decidedly the most elegant-looking
auditory of this country.

For myself, I found them in manner equal to their appearance; a greater
degree of repose and gentility of demeanour I never remember to have
noticed in any mixed assembly of any place. So much for report, which
informed me I should find the American house here filled by noisy
planters from the up-country and boisterous Mississippi boatmen. Let me
however add, that my personal friends assure me a class of families
attend my performances that is but rarely seen within this theatre,
which the creoles do not usually patronize; and that this extreme
decorum and exclusive appearance are assured by the places being all
secured by families.

This may in some sort be true; but at most can only apply to the
_parquette_, dress, and private boxes; the mixed population is still
here; and, after nightly observation, rendered acute by interest and
anxiety, I must assert that, taken generally, I do not desire to meet an
audience whose behaviour more decidedly justifies the terms respectable
and intelligent.

The least prolonged tumult of approbation even is stilled by a word to
order: and when it is considered that here are assembled the wildest and
rudest specimens of the Western population, men owning no control except
the laws, and not viewing these over submissively, and who admit of no
_arbiter elegantiarum_ or standard of fine breeding, it confers
infinite credit on their innate good feeling, and that sense of
propriety which here forms the sole check on their naturally somewhat
uproarious jollity.

Let me add, that my first engagement was for twelve nights, four nights
per week; that I, on my return from Natchez, acted a like number, with
equal patronage; and that on no one night was I afforded an occasion of
making an exception to the opinion I have above honestly recorded,
certainly with greater pleasure, because in asserting the truth I feel I
am at the same time performing an act of justice.



FRENCH THEATRE.


The Opera, or French Theatre, which I visited several times, is an
exceedingly well-appointed, handsome place, with a company very superior
to the American one, and having its pieces altogether better mounted. It
is to this house the creole families chiefly resort, as well indeed as
the American ladies of the best class, most of whom are good French
scholars; and within this _salle_ on any Sunday evening may be seen eyes
as bright and forms as delicately proportioned as in _la belle France_
itself.

The building, whereof this theatre forms a part only, is a very
extensive one, having as a part of its establishment a large ball-room,
with supper-rooms attached; and, in addition to this, a variety of
hells, where gambling nourishes in full practice, from the _salon_ where
the wealthy Creole plays his five-hundred-dollar _coup_, to the obscure
den where _roulette_ does its work, with a pace slower but as sure, at
the rate of half-dollar stakes. I have looked in on these places during
the performances, and never without finding them full.

Such establishments, ruinous and detestable under whatever guise or in
whatsoever place they are permitted, become doubly dangerous when placed
under the same roof and carried on in obvious connexion with what should
be at all times an innocent recreation, and which ought and might be one
of a refined and moral tendency.

The scenes of desperation and distress which gambling yearly gave rise
to in this place amongst a people whose temperament is peculiarly
excitable, coupled with a recent and terrible _exposée_, have at length
roused the legislature of Louisiana to release themselves from the
stigma of owing any portion of their revenue to a tax which legalised
this worst species of robbery and assassination. This very session I had
the gratification of seeing a bill brought into the House, and promptly
carried through it, making gambling felony, and subjecting its followers
to corresponding punishment.

The French Theatre will henceforward, I hope for ever, be freed from the
disgrace which such an association necessarily reflected upon the drama
and all concerned with it.

I had the pleasure of meeting at a large dinner-party at my hospitable
friend's, Col. D----'s, the gentleman who brought this bill into the
House, and never did I drink to any man's health with more perfect
sincerity: may he live to see his bill render gambling unknown in his
country, and to be looked upon as its greatest benefactor!



NEW ORLEANS.


JOURNAL.


From the 6th of January till the 29th, the weather continued uniformly
fine, but very hot; the mercury in our drawing-room ranging from 70 to
75 degrees, whilst in the sun the heat precludes violent exercise.

_29th._--The morning sultry to a degree; continued so until noon, when
the wind suddenly rose until it blew a perfect hurricane from about
S.W., the rain meantime descending in a deluge; the streets were quickly
changed into the beds of rivers, whilst peals of thunder kept rolling
from one quarter of the heavens to another, heralded by incessant
flashes of red lightning of the most vivid kind. I had promised to dine
with a family whose dwelling was in the next street; but to have gotten
thither without a canoe was out of the question. About six o'clock P.M.
it cleared off, the wind veering round to the north-east, when it
became cold; the glass falling to 45 degrees.

_February 1st._--Weather continues fine; clear, sunny days, but
agreeably cold, with slight frosts each night. Musquitoes have
disappeared, although I yet keep under a net at night by way of making
assurance "doubly sure." The vegetation fine and uninjured; the
orange-trees on Mr. H----'s plantation, where I this day dined, all
alive, throwing out fresh shoots in every direction; in two days the
roads too have become dry and hard, with dust in clouds; the new moon
sets in well for a continuance of fine weather.

_Monday, 2nd._--Attended to see Governor White installed in office. The
city artillery roared, and the ceremony was made brilliant by the
presence of the staff, as well of the regular American army stationed
here as of the numerous local corps of the city; of these volunteers,
were officers of all arms exceedingly well-appointed; they had also a
more military air, and were better set up, than their fellow-soldiers of
the North. The French citizen, in fact, acquires a more soldierly
appearance, and takes greater pains to fit himself for these holiday
doings, than either John Bull or brother Jonathan. A great number of
ladies also graced the hall of assembly with their presence, and were,
as on all public occasions, privileged persons. "_Place aux dames_"
rendered the possibility of one of the masculine gender's approach all
but impracticable.

Certainly in no country is there such universal and exclusive homage
extended to the softer sex: no matter at what expense of his
convenience, or circumscription of privilege, man must give way on all
occasions where the ladies may have a caprice to indulge in, or any
curiosity to gratify.

Dined with Colonel D----k, and sat next to a fine old Irishman, General
M'L----n, who had passed some of sixty years in Louisiana, yet preserved
his brogue and his ruddy complexion as freshly as though the time had
been spent on the hills of Wicklow; he had arrived here under the
Spanish government when a young man, and spoke of all the changes since
as events of yesterday.

_Tuesday, 3rd._--A curious scene began this morning at the State House.
Mr. Grimes, one of the late candidates for the Senate of the United
States, encountering Mons. La Branche, the Speaker of the Louisianian
legislature, in the hall of the Senate, according to report, struck him
with his whip on account of some unsettled dispute, and in return
received a bullet from the Speaker's pistol, which took effect in the
breast of the great-coat he wore, but failed to penetrate it. Mr.
Grimes, upon this, fired his pistol, loaded with ball and buck-shot, at
Mons. La Branche, wounding him slightly in the hand, and leaving one or
two of the conscript fathers, standing near, in doubt whether they were
shot or no, so disgustingly close was the whiz of the passing lead.

Dined with Messrs. T----n, where the affray of the morning was duly
discussed; some of the parties present alleging that the quarrel arose
from political, others from personal motives. It appeared, however, that
Mons. La Branche, after retiring until his hand was dressed, immediately
returned to the hall, and resumed his duties as the presiding judge of
the highest deliberative assembly of this great State; whilst, within an
hour, Mr. Grimes, who is an able advocate in great practice, was
pleading a cause on which he was retained in one of the civil courts.

The duel is here a matter of such frequent recurrence, that any event
of the kind hardly excites an hour's notice; the question is merely
"which of them got off?" and with that inquiry the affair usually ends.
A Court of Honour, having for its end and aim the amelioration of this
system, if not its suppression, has been instituted this very year, and
pretty generally subscribed to amongst the young Creoles; but I believe
its regulations have not proved very efficacious.

At nine o'clock P.M. left Mr. T----s; and walking to the near Levee, got
on board the Superior, bound for Cincinnati, but chartered to stop at
Natchez. The night was clear, but by far the coldest we have yet had
here: the crown of the Levee, thronged with its busy crews, was lighted
up by numerous fires, reflecting the hundred great steam-boats loading
and unloading here, whilst the air resounded with the cheer of the negro
gangs, given in unison to a few low simple notes, but full of wild
animation, and, to my thinking, exceeding musical.

As we cast off into the midst of the wide stream, the whole bank of the
Levee, with the warehouses bordering upon it, looked as though
illuminated.

_Wednesday,4th._--Up early in my little stateroom, where I have a small
French bed, a table, a chair, with a sash-window that opens on to the
gallery going round the boat. I find my quarters exceedingly
comfortable; but the vibration, owing to the power of the engines,
renders it difficult to read, and puts all writing quite out of the
question.

The river banks are well cleared and very thickly populated, exclusively
by French. Passing Donaldsonville, where the _bayou la Fourche_ quits
the main river to fall into the Mexican Gulf farther to the southward,
we saw the capitol designed for the use of the legislature of Louisiana,
but which, after being tenanted for a single session, was left for New
Orleans, and is now falling to ruin.

Many of the planters' seats are large, well-looking buildings, but they
appear neglected and badly kept; indeed the climate renders it very
difficult to keep a house in decent order unless it is inhabited all the
year round, in which case it stands a chance of as many changes of
tenants as a Turkish caravansary. These lands have a reputation for
prodigious fertility; at one place, belonging to a General Hampton, two
schooners were loading molasses: here I was informed a thousand slaves
find employment, bringing in to their employer an enormous revenue.

At Baton Rouge a military post of the United States' army, we came upon
the first rise in the banks: this place looks over a noble reach and
bay; the barracks appeared roomy and outwardly in good order.

We frequently drew alongside the forest for a supply of wood, which the
proprietors keep ready prepared in piles for the use of boats, being
paid for it by the cord. The consumption is of course enormous, and in
any other region would remind one that a scarcity must speedily ensue;
here, however, the supply appears exhaustless.

I always landed at these places; and above Baton Rouge, where the French
population is less general, I commonly found the labouring woodcutters
to be North-country men, or from the western part of Michigan. They
informed me that they can clear fifty dollars a month for the seven
months they can work in this region, and that four or five seasons are
sufficient to enable a saving man to buy a farm in the West.

These men uniformly agreed that, on returning home, they sorely missed
the water of the Mississippi. "I'll tell you, sir," said one very
intelligent fellow, within whose hut I walked to light my cigar;
"there's no pith in any other water after one's bin' used to drink o'
this; it seems as though a man couldn't work on water alone anywhere
else."

Whether this is fancy, or whether it arises from the regular and
abstemious habits they generally observe whilst working here, I cannot
tell; but the notion I found was universal throughout Louisiana.

I had frequent applications for a charge of fine powder for priming;
game, as they informed me, (that is, deer,) being in abundance. I was
greatly pleased with many of these men; they are hardy, industrious
fellows, and suffer much during the season of their stay from bad
quarters and bad diet: they said, nevertheless, it was a good place to
come down to, but spoke with infinite dislike of the dirk and rifle
practice of the neighbourhood.

Whilst passing Fort Adams after dark, our boat was hailed, signal fires
lighted, and at length rifles fired to bring us to; but all in vain, our
pilot held on his way, unheeding these pressing invitations. On my
observing to him that I conceived it a little hard not to touch for
passengers when apparently so near to them, he informed me that the
river was in rapid rise, and a current setting on that shore that might
ground the boat.

_Friday, 6th._--My servant awoke me with the tidings that our voyage was
complete, and we at Natchy-under-hill, where all things destined for the
upper region are landed. It was about six o'clock A.M., the rain coming
down merrily, when I took leave of the Superior and her captain, much
pleased with both, and landed ankle-deep in choice mud.

Three or four negroes followed with my baggage to the nearest store,
where I got a two-horse car, or dray, just put upon duty for the day. In
common with one or two other persons, I engaged the machine; and packing
my trunks and myself upon it, was dragged up the steep bluff, and so
made my first entrance into Natchez in a right Thespian conveyance, but
which assuredly required all the authority of antiquity to make it
respectable.

At noon the wind chopped about to north-east; and off went rain and
cloud, to be succeeded by a cold as cuttingly severe as any I ever
encountered in the North. Before dark the mud was converted into solid
ridges, and thick ice coated each astonished puddle.

My chamber, the only single one in the house, was furnished with
appliances that, in summer, must have rendered it delightful; facing the
east, and opening on the road, were a door and window, neither of them
particularly close-jointed; and, exactly _vis-à-vis_, another door, with
a keyhole as large as the bore of a four-pounder; this was flanked by a
third, which in its turn was set to by a huge open chimney; and, all
combined, they rendered my quarters more airy than was at this crisis
agreeable.

_Saturday, 7th._--Cold and wind unabated: walked in search of the
theatre, and found it was not in the town, but standing about half a
mile off, like a solitary vidette, in a grave-yard too! Got through the
rehearsal of "Born to Good Luck," and inwardly resolved that the best
fortune that could befall any player on this day would be to get off
acting for the night. This was in due time happily accomplished without
stir of mine; for the oil for our lamplighter being just landed, after
the night's frost, from the deck of the Abeona steamer, refused to burn
at a short notice; a resolution which, when communicated to me, I very
much applauded, declining with many thanks the manager's kindly tendered
substitute of candles; the appearance was therefore of necessity put
off, and the audience, as well as myself, granted a respite until
Monday.

Never did I feel cold so penetrating; they say, however, that it never
lasts longer than a couple of days, and is now more severe than is
usual; we therefore know the worst, and may live in hopes.

_Sunday, 8th._--Undertook, in company with a Boston friend, to walk out
to the seat of Colonel Wilkins, where I was invited to dine; a
conveyance had been sent for me; I was, however, desirous to see if
exercise would warm me, and set off under the guidance of my Yankee
companion, in whose good company I had the year before taken many an
excursion through the pleasant lanes of New England.

We, in the first place, overshot our mark; then, in trying across a
country gloriously broken and thickly timbered with a variety of trees,
we lost our way, keeping Mrs. Wilkins' excellent fare at the fire, and
ourselves away from it, some two hours longer than was needed.

Despite of a cart-load of blazing wood, it was impossible to keep
comfortably warm: the wine too partook of the common discomfort, and was
cold and cloudy; the champagne alone was fit to drink, being
sufficiently iced without much trouble.



THE THEATRE.


_Monday, 9th._--The weather a little milder: took a gallop into the
country; dined early, and about six walked out of town to the theatre,
preparatory to making my bow. The way was without a single passenger,
and not a creature lingered about the outer doors of the house: the
interior I found in the possession of a single lamplighter who was
leisurely setting about his duties; of him I inquired the hour of
beginning, and learnt that it was usual to commence about seven or eight
o'clock--a tolerable latitude; time was thus afforded me for a ramble,
and out I sallied, taking the direction leading from the town. I had not
proceeded far when I met several men riding together; a little farther
on, another group, with a few ladies in company, passed leisurely by,
all capitally mounted: others, I perceived, were fast approaching from
the same direction. It now occurred to me that these were the persons
destined to form the country quota of my auditory: upon looking back, my
impression was confirmed by seeing them all halting in front of the
rural theatre, and fastening their horses to the neighbouring rails and
trees.

I now hastened back to take a survey of the scene, and a very curious
one it was: a number of carriages were by this time arriving from the
town, together with long lines of pedestrians; the centre of the wide
road was however prominently occupied by the horsemen; some, dismounted,
abided here the coming of their friends, or exchanged greetings with
such of these as had arrived but were yet in their stirrups, and a finer
set of men I have rarely looked upon; the general effect of their
costume, too, was picturesque and border-like: they were mostly clad in
a sort of tunic or frock, made of white or of grass-green blanketing,
the broad dark-blue selvage serving as a binding, the coat being
furnished with collar, shoulder-pieces, and cuffs of the same colour,
and having a broad belt, either of leather or of the like selvage;
broad-leafed white Spanish hats of beaver were evidently the _mode_,
together with high leather leggings, or cavalry boots and heavy spurs.
The appointments of the horses were in perfect keeping with those of
these cavaliers; they bore _demi-pique_ saddles, with small massive
brass or plated stirrups, generally shabracs of bear or deer-skin, and
in many instances had saddle-cloths of scarlet or light blue, bound with
broad gold or silver lace.

The whole party having come up, and their horses being hitched in front
of the building to their satisfaction, they walked leisurely into the
theatre, the men occupying the pit: whilst in the boxes were several
groups of pretty and well-dressed women. The demeanour of these border
gallants was as orderly as could be desired; and their enjoyment, if one
might judge from the heartiness of their laughter, exceeding.

After the performance there was a general muster to horse; and away they
rode, in groups of from ten to twenty, as their way might lie together.
These were the planters of the neighbouring country, many of whom came
nightly to visit the theatre, and this from very considerable distances;
forming such an audience as cannot be seen elsewhere in this
hackney-coach age; indeed, to look on so many fine horses, with their
antique caparisons, piquetted about the theatre, recalled the palmy days
of the Globe and Bear-garden.



JOURNAL.


_Tuesday, 10th._--Cold, cold; mercury below zero; every one complaining
of the unusual duration of a temperature rarely encountered here. I am
fast screwing my relaxed fibres up to their ancient Northern pitch of
hardihood, and begin to face this nipping air with pleasure. Out early
for a long ride: towards noon the wind shifted a little to the west,
when it became perceptibly milder, the sun shining brightly and the sky
cloudless. Dined in the country at Mr. M----'s; where I had a long
conversation with Colonel W----s on the former and present condition of
these frontier states, and derived much in the way both of information
and amusement from this intelligent and well-informed gentleman.

_Wednesday, 11th._--Wind north-west; sun warm; day glorious; in saddle
early, and away to the forest. In the afternoon visited the plantation
of Colonel B----n, where I saw three or four very likely racers at
exercise; amongst others, a horse called Hard-heart, whose time for a
mile, they declare here, has never been matched. The passion for the
turf is, I find, yet stronger here, if that be possible, than in the
North. One or two persons are this very year going to Europe for the
sole purpose of importing horses of high reputation: a larger sort of
broodmare would, I think, be of more service to them.

In whatever direction I ride here, I find the country beautifully
diversified; a succession of hill and dale, with timber-trees of the
noblest kind. The magnolia grandiflora is found in groves absolutely,
and growing from forty to fifty feet high.

This night, after the play, an old acquaintance, Mr. Howard Payne, came
to see me: he had just descended the Mississippi from St. Louis; his
object in travelling being, as he informed me, to obtain subscriptions
for a journal he purposes to establish in London; its object, to
cultivate and sustain an exchange of literary opinions, and a more
liberal and generous intercourse in literature than at present exists.
His success, as might be expected, has been most encouraging.

_Thursday, 12th._--Weather balmy and genial; took a very long walk by
the Mississippi, following the course of the stream through a country
wild and beautiful; and on my way back, encountered a party of the
Choctaw tribe, a miserable sample of this once powerful people. The two
men, who appeared the leaders of the party, were both naked, their faces
daubed here and there with lines and circles of red and black paint:
they bore long rifles over their shoulders; and, buckled about their
loins, were deer-skin pouches, containing their ammunition, pipes, &c.
Several children were nearly or quite in a state of nature, and the
squaws themselves scantily robed in dirty blankets, without a single
ornament, dearly prized as is all finery by these coquettish children of
nature.

The best of this tribe are now away south, about the head of the Red
River: those yet lingering near this place, although numerous, are
considered the outcasts of the nation. The appearance of such as I have
encountered is squalid and filthy in the extreme.

_Friday, 13th._--A clear windy day, but sufficiently mild: a boat up
from New Orleans, with a mail; the first received since my arrival;
latest date from England, December 23rd. Walked down to
Natchy-under-hill, to inquire about a boat to New Orleans: saw one
monster come groaning down the stream, looking like a huge cotton-bale
on fire. Not a portion of the vessel remained above water, that could be
seen, excepting the ends of the chimneys: the hull and all else was
hidden by the cotton-bags, piled on each other, tier over tier, like
bricks. When the boat headed the current, in order to steer in for the
wharf, she was swept down bodily; and even after swinging into the eddy,
I did not think she would ever muster way enough to fetch up the few
yards she required to reach a berth. After a deal of hard puffing and
groaning however, she gathered headway, and slowly crept alongside the
bank.

I next strolled through the lane which composes the town, and is
occupied by a succession of bar-rooms, dancing-shops, and faro-banks or
roulette-tables: they were each in full operation, although it was not
yet two o'clock P.M.

These dens all stood open to the street, and were more obscene in their
appointments than the lowest of the itinerant hells found at our races.
Upon the tables however lay piles of silver, and behind them the ready
_croupiers_ administered. I observed wretched devils playing here, whose
whole standing kit would not have brought a picaroon at _vendue_.
Numbers of half-dressed, faded young girls lounged within the bar-rooms
or at the doors, with here and there a couple of the same style of
gemman to be met with about the silver hells of London; having, however,
a bolder and more swash-buckler-like air than that of their mere
petty-larceny European brotherhood.

From no party, however, did our company meet the slightest observation;
although, a very few years back, for strangers to have strolled about
here, without other purpose than spying into the nakedness of the land,
might have proved, to say the least of it, a perilous adventure; as it
is more than probable they would have been followed by a long shot,
likely enough to bring a book of travels to an abrupt conclusion; but
even at Natchy-under-hill, manners, if not morals, are improving. Murder
is not nigh so common here as it was a few seasons back; although now
and then one of an extraordinary nature does take place; a few months
back, for instance, an up-river boat brought-to here, as is usual, and
several of her passengers were landed: just as she was leaving the
wharf, the crack of a rifle was heard, and one of the passengers, who
had just gained the upper-deck after his shore-visit of an hour or so,
fell dead, pierced through the head. The wheels were backed, the corpse
laid on the nearest wharf by the captain, with an account of the manner
of his death, and, this done, off went the steamer. An inquest returned
a verdict of murder against some person unknown, which was duly reported
in the journal, together with the unfortunate man's name, and an
inventory of such things as were found upon him.

It was presumed, as he was a stranger from the West country, that in a
play dispute he had excited a spirit of revenge amongst some of these
desperadoes, which was thus promptly gratified.

The impunity with which professed gamblers carry on their trade, and the
course of crime consequent upon it, throughout these Southern countries,
is one of the most crying evils existing in this society. The Legs are
associated in gangs, have a system perfectly organized, and possess a
large capital invested in this pursuit; they are seldom alone, always
armed to the teeth, bound to sustain each other, and hold life at a
pin's fee. Upon the banks of these great waters they most commonly
rendezvous; and not a steamboat stirs from any quarter, but one or more
of the gang proceed on board, in some guise or other, according to the
capability or appearance of the agent; thus every passenger's business
and means become known--no difficult matter amongst men whose nature is
singularly simple and frank, and who are as prompt to detail their own
affairs as they are curious to know those of their fellows--a little
play carried on during the passage opens to the observant gambler the
habits of his prey, chiefly the planters of the up-country. These
planters arrive in New Orleans or some other entrepôt, settle with their
agent or broker, and often receive very large sums in balance of the
crop of the past season, or in advance upon the next, intended for the
purchase of slaves, &c. Meantime the sharper is on the pigeon's track;
the toils are spread abroad by the gang, some of whom inhabit the same
hotel probably, drink at the same bar, or, it may be, occupy the same
chamber; thus, with nothing to do, and his naturally excitable mind
fired by an addition of stimulant, if the victim escapes, it is by
miracle. Hundreds are plundered yearly in this systematic way: nor, if
at all troublesome, does the affair end here; for these gamblers are no
half-measure men; they have a ready specific to silence noisy pigeons,
and are right prompt in applying it.

No persons are better aware of the existence of this fraternity, and of
its great influence all over these countries, than the people
themselves; but partly from custom, and more through fear, it is
permitted to exist: a false feeling of honour also prevails, which
interferes to prevent the plundered taking active measures lest their
informing might be attributed to the circumstance of their having lost
alone. The limitless extent of thinly populated border facilitates
escape, even when the laws are awakened; whilst the funds of the
community are always lavishly used to screen a comrade, and at the same
time conceal the working of the system. The people themselves will, no
doubt, one day interfere to abate this terrible scourge, which exists
amongst them only for their ruin; and when the cry is once afoot, the
retribution will be awful.[1]

After dinner rode out to the race-course, and saw Pelham, who is in
training to run a mile with Hard-heart. Pelham is a handsome little
chestnut, with a perfectly thorough-bred air, and gallops like a witch.

From the course, rode to the mansion of Mrs. M----r, the very _beau
idéal_ of a Southern dwelling, having on either front very deep
porticoes opening into a capacious hall, with winding stairs of stone
outside leading on to a gallery twenty feet wide, which is carried round
the building on a level with the first-floor story, and is covered by a
projecting roof supported by handsome pillars: by this means the inner
walls are far removed from the effect of either sun or rain, and the
spacious apartments kept both cool and dry. The kitchen and other
offices are detached, forming two sides of a quadrangle, of which the
house is the third, and the fourth a garden.

Here I saw a negro whose age was supposed by Mrs. M----r to be about one
hundred and twenty. He had been in her husband's house, who was an
officer in the Spanish service, when she married, and first came here
half a century back, and was then considered past labour. The old boy
was quite a wag; cracked several jokes, as well as his want of teeth
would let him, upon one of the company about to be married; and, on
being shown a lump of fine Cavendish tobacco he had asked for, his eye
sparkled like a serpent's. Mr. M----r assured me his appetite was good;
and that when supplied with abundance of tobacco, he was always as at
present, cheerful.

After eleven o'clock P.M. put on my cloak, and, tempted by the fineness
of the night, accompanied my friend T----r on his way to his own
quarters; returning along the edge of the lofty bluff between whose foot
and the river is squeezed the town of Natchez.

Whilst smoking my cigar here, the murmur of a fray came to me, borne
upon the light breeze: my curiosity was excited by the indistinct
sounds, and I walked along in the direction whence they came for a
couple of minutes. As I neared it, the tumult grew in loudness and
fierceness; men's hoarse and angry voices, mingled in hot dispute, came
crashing upwards as from the deeps of hell. I bent anxiously over the
cliff, as though articulate sounds might be caught three hundred feet
above their source;--a louder burst ascended, then crack! crack! went a
couple of shots, almost together;--the piercing shrieks of a female
followed, and to these succeeded the stillness of death.

I lay down upon the ground for several minutes, holding my ear close
over the edge of the precipice, but all continued hushed. I then rose,
and seated myself upon one of the benches scattered along the heights,
almost doubting the evidence of my senses--which told of a wild brawl
and probable murder as having had place beneath the very seat I yet
occupied--so universal was the tranquillity.

On one hand lay the town of Natchez, sunk in repose; the moon at full,
was sleeping over it, in as pure a sky as ever poet drank joy and
inspiration from; far below, wrapt in shade, lay the scene of my almost
dream, the line of houses denoted by a few scattered lights, and in its
front was the mighty Mississippi; rolling on in its majesty through a
dominion created by itself, through regions of wilderness born of its
waters and still subject to its laws; I could distinctly hear the
continuous rush of the strong current; it was the only sound that moved
the air. I hearkened intently to this rushing; it had indeed an absolute
fascination for the ear: it was not like the hoarse roar of the ocean,
now breaking along a line of beach, then again lulled as though
gathering breath for a renewed effort; it was a sound monotonous and
low, but which filled the ear and awed the very heart. I felt that I was
listening to a voice coeval with creation, and that ceased not either by
night or day! which the blast of winter could not rouse, or the breath
of summer hush; a voice which the buzz and bustle of noon might drive
from the ear, but which the uplifting of the foundations of the world
alone could silence.

_Saturday, 14th._--This being my last day in Natchez, I employed it in
visiting any lions that might hitherto have escaped me; amongst other
unlooked-for wonders, was an exhibition of pictures advertised from
England, and purporting to be a choice collection of ancient and modern
masters. One picture, a Bacchus and Ariadne, was finely painted; but had
suffered a good deal from time and travel, combined with a dip in the
Mississippi. The remainder of the collection was composed of worse
pictures than are offered to connoisseurs at a pawnbroker's sale in
London. The proprietor informed me that they were to be brought to the
hammer and sold without reserve in a few days, when he anticipated a
lively sale for the large pictures, the quantity of raw material used up
in the work being a great consideration with the lovers of art here. I
looked upon the mere fact of such a speculation being made in these
countries as creditable to the people and worthy of notice. Natchez
will, no doubt, one day have an academy of her own; men can hardly fail
to paint where nature offers so much that is beautiful for their
imitation; and, indeed, I have in the remotest places seen attempts by
self-taught artists that have convinced me example and encouragement
alone are needed.

Learning that the steamer Carolton was to sail this afternoon, I once
more descended into Natchy-under-hill, where I had an interview with the
captain, who was, I found, a worthy legitimate follower of old Father
Ocean, recently transferred to the service of one of his greatest
tributaries: he readily promised to delay sailing for a couple of hours
for me, until the play was over; this point being settled, I felt at
ease, and accompanied Mr. M----r to his mother's place to dinner. The
wind came from the south, and was indeed as perfumed as though blowing
"o'er a bed of violets." The perfume of early spring began to exhale
from the magnolia and Cape jasmin, to a degree that rendered distance
necessary to prevent its being over cloying. I felt my spirits bound
within me, as on a half-wild, little thorough-bred Mississippi nag, I
rattled up and down the well-turfed slopes lying along the edge of the
forest.

After dinner took a spot, called the Devil's Punch-bowl, _en route_; it
is formed by a vast sinking of the river-bank, trees and soil all have
gone down together, forming an immense wooded basin of great depth and
extent. As the stream undermines these forest bluffs, which it is ever
acting against either on one side or other, these fallings-in must
occur; indeed great changes are constantly taking place on the river;
many of a very striking kind are pointed out as having occurred within
the memory of persons yet living.

As we rode hence to the town, a distance of four or five miles, the wind
shifted to the west, and a smart shower commenced; an hour later, and
this lovely day set amidst a violent storm of rain, lightning, and wind;
so I was fated to descend the bluff by water, as I first mounted it: my
vehicle was improved though, for I had this time procured a comfortable
carriage. By half-past ten I was snugly stowed away, bag and baggage, on
board the Carolton; and by eleven we were following the eternal current
amidst a deluge of rain, and a gale of wind blowing from N.W., with a
cold which, falling suddenly upon one's fibre, unstrung by three or four
warm days, was positively paralyzing. I occupied a stateroom by favour;
but, a couple of panes of glass being out of the window, I suffered for
my exclusiveness.

_Sunday, 15th._--Snow falling, the first I have seen in the South; our
boat constantly stopping to load cotton, so that we, at the close of the
day, have made only some twenty miles: the night came on clear, and
tolerably mild. By eight o'clock P.M. we had received from our several
halts one thousand bales of the staple, all of which were stowed away
upon our deck, galleries, &c. till daylight could no longer be expected
to visit us--even the doors were blocked up, as in the Alabama. Thank
Heaven! our present imprisonment is for a shorter period, our worthy
captain assuring us that by daylight on Tuesday we shall be alongside
the Levee.

At one of our landing-places we found a couple of outcast-looking
white-men bivouacking beneath a tree before a half-burned log, with a
couple of tin saucepans standing near: one of the precious pair was
extended on the damp soil, bare-headed, with a blanket rolled about him;
the other sat, Indian-like, wrapped in a similar robe. For the three
hours we were delayed, whilst loading three hundred bales of cotton, I
do not think either of them moved; they were as miserable specimens of
humanity as might be met with. I could not help contrasting these
members of the privileged class with a gang of stout slaves who were
employing their Sunday's leisure in assisting to load the boat, for
which service they each received about two shillings sterling: I need
hardly say the contrast was decidedly in favour of the negroes.

_Monday, 16th._--Day fine, and not so cold: passed Bayou Sarah, as high
up as which the tide flows, rising about six inches once in twenty-four
hours.

Opposite Prophet's Island saw a large square ark, moored to the bank,
surmounted by a pole from which a white flag was fluttering. I was in
great hopes this was the Mississippi theatre, which I knew from report
to be somewhere in this latitude on its annual voyage to New Orleans;
but it turned out to be the store of a Yankee pedlar on a trading
voyage.

This floating theatre, about which I make constant inquiry, and which I
yet hope to fall in with, is not the least original or singular
speculation ventured on these waters. It was projected and is carried
on by the Elder Chapman, well known for many years as a Covent Garden
actor: his practice is to have a building suitable to his views erected
upon a raft at some point high up the Mississippi, or on one of its
tributaries, whence he takes his departure early in the fall, with
scenery, dresses, and decorations, all prepared for representation. At
each village or large plantation he hoists banner and blows trumpet, and
few who love a play suffer his ark to pass the door, since they know it
is to return no more until the next year; for, however easy may prove
the downward course of the drama's temple, to retrograde, upwards, is
quite beyond its power. Sometimes a large steamer from Louisville, with
a thousand souls on board, will command a play whilst taking in fuel,
when the profit must be famous. The _corps dramatique_ is, I believe,
principally composed of members of his own family, which is numerous,
and, despite of alligators and yellow fever, likely to increase and
flourish. When the Mississippi theatre reaches New Orleans, it is
abandoned and sold for fire-wood; the manager and troop returning in a
steamer to build a new one, with such improvements as increased
experience may have suggested.

This course Mr. Chapman has pursued for three or four seasons back, and,
as I am told by many who have encountered this aquatic company, very
profitably. I trust he may continue to do so until he makes a fortune,
and can bequeath to his kin the undisputed sovereignty of the
Mississippi circuit.

_Tuesday, 17th._--At six A.M. was once more safely landed upon the
already busy Levee of New Orleans; here I rested until the 22nd; on
which day I took steam direct to Mobile, accomplishing the trip in
forty-eight hours, one night of which we passed grounded on the
Rigolets, a sandy difficult pass connecting Lac Pontchartrain with Lac
Borgne.

FOOTNOTE:

[1] This period has arrived, and hardly before I expected, from all I
had gathered on the subject; for since this work has been in the press,
I have read of an attack made upon a known rendezvous of gamblers by a
party of neighbour planters near this place, by whom, after a smart
action, the hold was forced and carried by assault; when, according to
the usage of war, for which exceeding respectable authorities might be
quoted, the garrison was immediately hanged. A proceeding of this nature
reads very queerly in the London Journals, but drawing inferences from
it after the rules applicable to the County Middlesex, is laughable;
these civil rules might be applied with more justice to the condition of
the Scottish frontier in James the First's time. In my eyes these
popular movements are not only natural, but wholesome; speaking
favourably for the growing morals of the people, and, in the position
they occupy, the only way of eradicating speedily an association as
atrocious as it is wide-spread and powerful. I have gathered much
singular information on this subject, and may in some other shape, when
the opportunity occurs, make it public.



MOBILE.


This little city was to me one of the most attractive spots I visited
south of the Potomac. I came upon it at my first visit after a severe
roughing, and found a fine climate and old friends, whose warm welcome
could not have come in better time. I found here also the best conducted
and best appointed hotel in the Southern country, and society congenial
and amiable: all these combined go a good way to prejudice a man in
favour of a place which in itself may have little to recommend it.
Mobile, however, has claims which are rapidly increasing its population
and its trade; indeed the ratio of advance in both is equal to that of
any other place in the States; in proof of which, I find by a report
just issued of the returns of the foreign trade, exclusive of the
coasting business, which is considerable, that the increase has been
gradual and steady, and in five years stands thus:

In the year 1830, the total value of the importations to the port of
Mobile was 1,044,135 dollars: the value of the exports for the same year
was 1,994,365 dollars. In 1834, the value of the imports is stated at
3,088,811 dollars: the exports for the same year at 6,270,197 dollars.
For the current year, I am credibly assured that an addition of
one-third to these last amounts will not much overrate the enormous
increase to which, should peace continue, each year must add for many
seasons to come, since the influx of planters to Alabama is clearing the
cane-brake with a rapidity unprecedented even in this country: the
Indian reserves are all coming into cultivation as fast as they are
vacated; and, in fact, Alabama at this day may be said to present a
spectacle of successful energy and industry not to be surpassed. A
railroad is now in progress, the prospectus for which was in circulation
during my visit, which is to connect North and South Alabama, commencing
in the valley of Tennessee, and running to some navigable point of the
harbour of Mobile. A glance at a map of the States will at once render
obvious the immense importance such a line of communication will be of
to this city, concentrating on this point the trade, not only of North
Alabama and the Tennessee valley, but some of the most fertile portions
of Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, and Mississippi.

By this railway the great obstacle in the way of the trade of the
Tennessee valley, the muscle shoals, will be avoided, whilst, at a fair
calculation, it is expected that the increase of cotton received into
Mobile will amount to one hundred thousand bales: besides a vast
quantity of pork, beef, bacon, flour, lard, whisky, &c. that now seeks a
market at New Orleans, through those great natural channels, the
Tennessee, Ohio, and Mississippi rivers: to the navigation of the
first-named river the shoals have hitherto been a serious drawback,
detaining laden craft of all kinds for weeks, and even months, until,
late in winter or early in spring, a rise in the river enabled them to
float over into the highway of the Western world, the Mississippi.

The grounds on which the vast and seemingly extravagant increase of the
cotton crop of this State of Alabama may be justified, are to be found,
not only in the great fertility of the virgin soil yearly brought under
cultivation, but in the unprecedented increase of population. This very
year, it is calculated, not less than twenty-five thousand slaves have
been brought into this country from the older States on the Atlantic;
this amount will, in all probability, be exceeded by the increase of
next season, as there are many millions of acres of the most fertile
land in the Union yet in the hands of Government for sale, lately
conceded in exchange by the Indians of the Creek and Cherokee tribes.

The great cause of emigration from the Atlantic States is to be looked
for in the temptation offered the planter by a soil of vastly superior
fertility. In South Carolina and in most parts of Georgia, it will
appear that a good average crop will give one bale or bag of cotton,
weighing 310 lbs. for each working-hand employed on the plantation; now,
in Alabama, four or five bales, each weighing 430 lbs. is a fair average
for an able-bodied slave engaged in the cultivation; and I have
conversed with many planters, holding places upon the bottom-lands of
the river, who assured me their crop was yearly ten bales of cotton for
each full-grown hand.

When it is considered that this season the value of cotton has been
ranging from sixpence-halfpenny to ninepence per pound, the enormous
receipts of some of these persons, who make from four hundred to three
thousand bales of 430 lbs. weight each, may be imagined.

These are the men who have been my companions on all my late steamboat
trips, for this is the season that affords them _relâche_ and brings
them together; and in this city especially, as at Natchez, it is by this
singular class I am surrounded: they are not difficult to comprehend,
and a slight sketch of their condition and habits may not be
uninteresting, as they form the great mass now inhabiting this mighty
region, and it is from them a probable future population of one hundred
million of souls must receive language, habits, and laws.

We generally associate with the Southern planter ideas of indolence,
inertness of disposition, and a love of luxury and idle expense:
nothing, however, can be less characteristic of these frontier tamers of
the swamp and of the forest: they are hardy, indefatigable, and
enterprising to a degree; despising and contemning luxury and
refinement, courting labour, and even making a pride of the privations
which they, without any necessity, continue to endure with their
families. They are prudent without being at all mean or penurious, and
are fond of money without having a tittle of avarice. This may at first
sight appear stated from a love of paradox, yet nothing can be more
strictly and simply true; this is, in fact, a singular race, and they
seem especially endowed by Providence to forward the great work in which
they are engaged--to clear the wilderness and lay bare the wealth of
this rich country with herculean force and restless perseverance,
spurred by a spirit of acquisition no extent of possession can satiate.

Most men labour that they may, at some contemplated period, repose on
the fruits of their industry; adventurers in unhealthy regions,
generally, seek to amass wealth that they may escape from their
_pénible_ abodes, and recompense themselves by after enjoyment for the
perils and privations they have endured. Not so the planters of this
south-western region; were their natures moulded after this ordinary
fashion, these States, it is true, might long continue mines of wealth,
to be wrought by a succession of adventurers; but never would they
become what Providence has evidently designed they shall be,--great
countries, powerful governments, and the home of millions of freemen yet
unborn.

These men seek wealth from the soil to return it back to the soil, with
the addition of the sweat of their brows tracking every newly-broken
furrow. Their pride does not consist in fine houses, fine raiment,
costly services of plate, or refined cookery: they live in humble
dwellings of wood, wear the coarsest habits, and live on the plainest
fare. It is their pride to have planted an additional acre of
cane-brake, to have won a few feet from the river, or cleared a thousand
trees from the forest; to have added a couple of slaves to their family,
or a horse of high blood to their stable.

It is for these things that they labour from year to year. Unconscious
agents in the hands of the Almighty, it is to advance the great cause of
civilization, whose pioneers they are, that they endure toil for their
lives, without the prospect of reaping any one personal advantage which
might not have been attained in the first ten years of their labour.

It is not through ignorance either that they continue in these simple
and rude habits of life. Most of these planters visit the Northern
States periodically, as well as New Orleans; their wealth, and the
necessity the merchant feels to conciliate their good-will, makes them
the ready guests at tables where every luxury and refinement abounds:
but they view these without evincing the least desire to imitate them,
prefer generally the most ordinary liquids to the finest-flavoured
wines, and, as guests, are much easier to please than to catch; for not
only do they appear indifferent to these luxuries, but they seek to
avoid them, contemn their use, and return to their log-houses and the
cane-brake to seek in labour for enjoyment.

There must, however, be a great charm in the unrestrained freedom of
this sort of life; since I have frequently met women, who were bred in
the North, well educated, and accustomed for years to all the _agrémens_
of good society, who yet assured me that they were happiest when living
in the solitude of their plantation, and only felt dull whilst wandering
about the country or recruiting at some public watering-place.

The great drawback to these frontiers, and one which will, I fear, exist
for some time, unless the citizens of the towns take the law into their
own hands, and execute it in a summary manner, is to be found in the
presence of certain idle ruffians who exist here. The only matter of
surprise to me is, that there are so few of the description, and that in
such a country crime is so rare, where the facility afforded for escape
is great, and where the laws view with such reverence the liberty of the
subject.

One or two anecdotes of recent occurrence will, however, do more to put
the reader in possession of the true state of the case than a volume of
unsupported reasoning.

During the last night I acted in Mobile, whilst on the stage, I heard a
slight noise in the upper boxes; a rush was made to a particular point;
then a moment's scuffle, and all was silent. The ladies in the
dress-boxes had not moved, and very little sensation was communicated to
the crowded pit: the whole thing, in fact, was over in as short a time
as I have occupied in the telling of it.

After the play I accompanied a party of ladies to the house of Mr.
M----e to sup, and here, for the first time, learned, through an inquiry
casually made, that during that slight scuffle a citizen had been killed
by the blow of a knife, given by an intemperate ruffian named M'Crew,
who had quietly descended the stairs afterwards, accompanied by his
brother. These men were from the country, were known disturbers of the
peace, and rarely made their appearance without bloodshed following.

The next morning I inquired as to the result, when it appeared the
homicide was adjudged manslaughter in a chance-medley; and the ruffian,
who had voluntarily appeared before the magistrate, was admitted to
bail. Now here was a case where Lynch law might have been most
beneficially employed: the citizens should have caught both these
ruffians, and hung them at their gates _in terrorem_.

I may add here, that, within a month of this time, these fiends
atrociously murdered the child of a planter, out of revenge for some
real or fancied affront; and, finding the exploit likely to prove
serious, fled to Texas.[2]

My next illustration is of a kind so little in keeping with the year
1835, that it would be a better story if dated from the debateable land,
anno Dom. 1535. The hero of the fight I am about to narrate is as fine a
specimen of an old Irishman as ever I met with, and I have seen him
frequently: his name is Robert Singleton, and his residence is Baldwin
county, in this State.

It appears that Mr. Singleton had lent to a Mr. English four or five
negroes, whom at a certain time he claimed, according to agreement, and
took back to his own place: hence arose a dispute as to the right of
possession; which dispute the sons of Mr. English decided upon settling
in a right border fashion.

Accompanied by three of their white neighbours, and three of their
father's slaves, the two Englishes repaired to the plantation of Mr.
Singleton. He was absent; but they surrounded the house, and, after a
resistance on the part of the slaves, which cost one of them his life,
the number claimed were made prisoners, and marched off for the country
of their captors.

Meantime, a lad who had escaped from the house on the first attack,
found, and communicated the surprisal and the result to his master, Mr.
Singleton, who, accompanied by his eldest son, without a moment's
hesitation put spurs to horse, and took the line of country likely to
cut off the retreat of the enemy.

Early on the next morning, July 4th, the Singletons came upon a bridge
they knew the Englishes must cross; and, not discovering new tracks,
decided to halt here: they had not waited half an hour, when the other
party came in sight.

A parley was called. Singleton, senior, declared himself and son
resolute to maintain the bridge against all comers, unless his slaves
were restored.

The elder brother, W. English, begged the Singletons not to fire, as
they would surrender the negroes: at the same time, the party alighted;
but as Singleton turned his head to desire his son to stand fast, he
received a shot in the left shoulder; and, on a second, saw his son fall
dead across his feet. Clapping his gun to his shoulder, he shot David
English through the brain; a barrel was at the same moment levelled
against him by Wm. English, but snapped: again he called on Singleton
not to shoot; but he this time called in vain. Taking up his son's
loaded piece, he shot his adversary whilst in the act of stooping to
lift his dead brother's rifle.

One more shot was discharged from the English party, and Singleton
received a second ball in his side. The assailants then fled, leaving
the resolute old planter master of the field, with his eldest son, a
young man of the best habits, dead at his feet.

His wounds did not prevent his collecting his negroes after the flight
of his enemies; he then walked back half a mile to where he had left his
horse, mounted, and rode home, although upwards of fifty years of age.
Mortification was for some time apprehended; but he at last recovered
perfectly, and was, when I left Mobile, in robust health.

The detail of this affair, as it stands in the journal, is concluded by
a regular list with the names of killed and wounded; but not one word of
comment. It is now in my possession, and the account may be relied upon
as authentic in every particular.

The streets of Mobile are covered over with a kind of shell that abounds
in the neighbourhood: this binds with the fine sand, and makes the
cleanest, best road possible, and is besides, I believe, very durable.
Since the swampy ways have been replaced by good roads of this material,
the health of the city has never been attacked by fever, which was
frequent before. The cholera is unknown here, although its ravages in
the south-western country were, and in fact are, terrible.

The market is abundantly supplied with provisions, fish, and game of
every variety. Here is one of the best-ordered hotels in the States, and
altogether as many inducements to the visitor or settler as any place I
saw. The summer I had no means of proving; but from all hands learn that
the heat, although continuous, is by no means excessive; whilst, within
five miles, on the heights of Springhill, the nights are, at the hottest
season, absolutely cold.

A ball, given in honour of the birth-day of Washington, by the volunteer
corps of the city, afforded me an admirable occasion of seeing the
people, since the committee was kind enough to send me a ticket.

Here, to the number of six hundred, was assembled all of the democracy
of Mobile having a claim to the term respectable, properly applied to
habit and character, not to calling or wealth. I have seldom seen a
better dressed, and never a better conducted assembly, whilst nothing
could be more perfectly democratic.

Here you might see the merchant's lady, whose French ball-dress cost one
hundred and fifty dollars, dancing in the same set with the _modiste_
who made it up; whilst the merchant changed hands with the wife of his
master-drayman, and the wealthy planter's daughter footed to her
brother's _schneider_, himself tricked out in some nondescript uniform
of his own making. Yet were all perfectly well conducted, and equally
happy: nor is it found that any ill consequence or undue familiarity
continues after these public occasions restore each to his, or her, own
sphere, or pursuit.

The supper was laid out most tastefully upon the galleries surrounding
the inner court of the hotel, enclosed for the occasion with canvass,
and the pillars wreathed with shrubs and flowers. At the upper end was
an ugly, ill-dressed picture, which, I was informed, represented
Liberty; a proof how the imagination can deify its own object of
veneration, for a less inviting gentlewoman it would be difficult to
conceive.

On the 7th of March I returned to New Orleans, _via_ Portersville; and,
on halting at the house midway the forest, was advised by my countryman
the landlord to dine, by all means, if I was hungry; for he had "an
illegant turkey, a wild one, and a Tennessee ham, with a lump of roast
beef, rare and tinder." I followed his counsel, and made a most
excellent meal on the wild turkey, a bird of which I should never tire.
I set it down as the foremost of all winged things yet appropriated to
the use of the kitchen.

I arrived at New Orleans, and again passed three weeks amidst attentions
that never wearied, and the most flattering professional success. I will
here, as I have before done, drop my Journal, and put my Impressions
together in a less desultory form.

FOOTNOTE:

[2] Since this sheet has been in the course of printing, I have received
an account of the capture of the murderers, from a correspondent at
Mobile. The State had offered a large reward, and taken active measures
for the M'Crews' detection. The retreat of one was traced out in the
Mexican territory; and the details of his surprisal and capture, whilst
resident amongst the Comanche Indians, are absolutely romantic, and
highly creditable to the courage and patience of the captor, a private
individual. I have to regret that these details are too long to be
inserted by way of note. The murderers (or one of them at least) are now
at Mobile awaiting trial.



NEW ORLEANS.


The day of my first arrival at this capital of many waters, this city
_sui generis_, was one to which I had looked forward with much
impatience and highly-roused expectations.

The disastrous affair of 1812 had made New Orleans a name familiar to
Britain, and given to it a celebrity more general amongst all sorts of
men than its vast trade alone would have achieved for it in double the
time.

From the day also of my landing on the continent I had never heard this
city named without accompanying remarks being elicited descriptive of
its rapid increase, its singular position, and motley population,
together with the speculations founded on the promise of its future
greatness derived from its present healthful condition; that is, its
political and commercial sanity; since no term can be worse applied, as
illustrative of the views entertained of it by the North, whether
physically or morally considered; views however that, on both these
points, I have decided are singularly overcharged, even by persons one
would conceive possessed of the information likely to lead to a correct
judgment. This I attribute partly to the habit we are in of taking
reports of places for granted, and repeating them from father to son
without much personal examination, or rather comparison, and partly to
the changes constantly operating upon society here, with a rapidity at
least equal to the growth of building or the increase of produce and
population; changes which come like Duncan's couriers, "thick as hail,"
the last giving the flat lie to the truth just told; to be, in turn,
proved false by a successor.

To a stranger, the point of observance most original and striking, and
which will at once inform and interest him, is the view from the Levee,
with a walk along this artificial embankment, which commencing a hundred
miles above New Orleans, and thence waiting on the stream whose rule it
circumscribes, here bends like a drawn bow about the city, forming a
well-frequented quay of some seven miles.

For three miles of this, the Levee is bordered by tiers of merchant
shipping from every portion of the trading world, and close against it,
those of the greatest tonnage, having once chosen a berth, may load or
unload without shifting a line; a facility derived from nature that no
port in the world can rival.

Along the whole extent of this line situated below the Levee, but at a
distance of some two hundred feet, runs a range of store-houses,
cotton-presses, and shops, connected by tolerably well-flagged
side-walks; and certainly in no other place is such accommodation more
absolutely required, the middle space or street, so called, being, after
rain, a slough, to which that of Despond, as described by Bunyan, was a
_bagatelle_; and floundering through, or pounded in which, are lines of
hundreds of light drays, each drawn by three or four fine mules, and
laden with the great staple, cotton.[3]

At both extremities of the tiers of shipping, but chiefly at the south,
lie numberless steamboats of all sizes; and yet again, flanking these,
are fleets of those rude rafts and arks constructed by the dwellers on
the hundred waters of the far West; and thence pushed forth, freighted
with the produce of their farms, to find, after many days, a safe haven
and a sure market here.

Let it not be forgotten that many of the primitive-looking transports
lying at this point have performed a drift of three thousand miles.
Their cargoes discharged, they are immediately disposed of to be broken
up; their crews working their way back on board the steamers, to return
in the following year with a vessel and a freight, both of which are at
this time flourishing in full vegetation in field and in forest.

The interest with which I looked upon these far-travelled barks I dare
hardly trust myself to declare or to describe; they told me of men and
of their increase, who, only for the waters on which they live, would be
as little known and quite as uncivilized as the Indian whose land they
have redeemed from the wild beast or more savage hunter, to bid it teem
with abundance, and to be a refuge and a home for millions to rejoice
in.

The appearance of the Levee during this season is most animated. At the
quarter occupied by the great Western steamboats, the lading and
discharging cargoes seldom ceases during the busy months, when each hour
appears to be grudged if not devoted to toil. At night, fires mark the
spots where work is most brisk, and the warehouses along the line are
frequently illuminated from the street to the upper story: crowds of
labourers, sailors, bargemen, and draymen cheer, and order, and swear in
every language in use amongst this mixed population; and, above all, at
regular intervals, rises the wild chorus of the slaves labouring in
gangs, who, if miserable, are certainly the merriest miserables in
existence.

No scene is more likely to impress a stranger with a full knowledge of
the vast deal of trade transacted here in a few months than this
prolonged bustle at a time when the rest of the city sleeps; and, as he
pursues his way amongst tens of thousands of bales of cotton that
actually cover the Levee for miles, he will cease to doubt of the wealth
which he learns is on all hands accumulating with a rapidity almost
partaking of the marvellous.

I had heard in the North much said about the great danger incurred by a
night-stroll in New Orleans, and so will the stranger who next follows
after me: but do not let these bug-a-boo tales deter him from a walk
upon the Levee after ten P.M. It is not amongst these sons of industry,
however rude, that he will encounter either insult or danger: I have
traversed it often on foot and on horseback, and never met with the
first, or had the slightest cause to apprehend the latter.

In a city like this, amongst a concourse of strangers, the worst sort of
men are doubtless to be met with, as in all large cities; but surely not
in greater numbers. I question whether London or Paris can boast of less
crime in proportion; certainly, not fewer felonies. Here, it is too
true, a quarrel in hot blood is often followed by a shot or a stroke
with the ready poniard; but for this both parties are equally prepared,
and resolute to abide the issue: and for the stranger, all he has to do
is to keep out of low places of gambling and dissipation, and, if in a
large hotel, to keep his door locked; a precaution which would be as
much called for at Cheltenham or Spa, were the congregated numbers
equally great; although, in the latter places, I admit, the thieves
might be nicer men, better dressed, and not chewers of 'baccy.

The streets, after nightfall, are the very quietest I ever saw in any
place possessing one-third of the population. The theatres, I repeat, as
far as my observation goes, might serve as models to cities boasting
greater claims to refinement.

As a set-off, however, let the stranger visit the gambling tables, which
are numerous; the low balls, masked or other, occurring every night, for
whites or quadroons, or both; let him visit the low bar-rooms, or even
look into that of the first hotel, which bar forms a half-circle of
forty feet, yet is, during ten hours of the twenty-four, only to be
approached in turn, and whose daily receipt is said to exceed three
hundred dollars for drams; and he will, if such be his only sources of
information, naturally come to conclusions anything but favourable to
the moral condition of New Orleans.

The crowd so occupied, however, be it remembered, is composed of
strangers, or what is here called the transient population, at this
season counting at least forty thousand persons, the greatest proportion
of whom are here without a home except the bar-room of a public-house,
or a shelter save the bedchamber which they have in common with from
three to twenty companions, as luck or favour may preside over their
billet.

This assemblage is compounded of men from every section of the
Union,--the quiet Yankee, cautiously picking his way to fortune, with
small means and large designs; the gay Virginian, seeking a new location
on the rich land of Mississippi or Alabama; the suddenly enriched
planter of Louisiana, full of spare cash, which can only be got rid of
in a frolic, having settled with his merchant and purchased the
contemplated addition to his slave stock, and resolute to enjoy his
holiday after his own fashion; the half-civilized borderers from the
banks of the Gazoo, or the prairies of Texas, come hither with the first
produce ever won by industry from the swamp or the forest, to see New
Orleans, form connexions, and arrange credit for future operations.

Numerous as are these classes, they are yet readily distinguished by one
who has seen and observed them in turns, and noted their
characteristics, which are indeed sufficiently distinct.

The Yankee, slow, observant, concentrated, with thin, close-compressed
lips, bilious complexion, and anxious countenance, may be picked out
amidst a hundred other men, edging cautiously from place to place,
scanning every group, and having, as it were, eyes and ears for all
present.

The Virginian, tall of stature, thin and flexile of form, of an easy
carriage, with an open up-look, and an expression at once reckless and
humorous, talking rapidly and swearing loudly, frank in his _abord_, of
engaging deportment, and assuming as though there were no country so
good as the "Old Dominion," and no better man than her son.

The Kentuck farmer--whose marked characteristics are pervading all the
States bordering on the Mississippi, and who, together with the Buck-eye
of Ohio, will ultimately give tone and manner to the dwellers on its
thousand streams--of a stronger outline and coarser stamp, as is fitted
to and well-becoming the pioneer of the grandest portion of the
continent, and of one who is putting forth the thew and sinew of a
giant, to benefit posterity; his only present recompense the possession
of a rude independence, and the consciousness of increasing wealth, to
add to which his energies are unceasingly devoted; his relaxation,
meantime, an occasional frolic or debauch, which he grapples with, as
his father did with fortune and the forest, closely and constantly, only
pausing for breath through sheer exhaustion, or prostration rather. His
person is square, and better knit together than most men's; his
complexion clear, though bronzed by exposure to sun and storm; his
manner rustic, but not rude; with a self-possession that is evident at a
glance, and which makes him at all times equal to any chance or change
that may cross him. Good-humoured, sociable, and very observant, his
confidence is quickly won, or lost, according to a first impression.
Proffering largely, yet ever ready to more than make his words good;
full of kindliness to those he loves or esteems; boisterous, rude, and
ill to deal with, where he dislikes; capable withal of rapid refinement,
and having a ready perception of its advantages.

The Creole of Louisiana forms another distinct specimen to be met with
here, though seldom mixing much with either of the first named classes.
He invariably conserves much of the air and appearance of _la belle
France_, and can never be mistaken, offering, according to his
disposition, all the varieties of his original stock, from the amiable
deportment and companionable _bonhommie_ of the well-bred Frenchman, to
the fierce _brusquerie_ and swaggering sneer of the gallant of the
_estaminet_.

What will be the result of a complete amalgamation of all these classes,
which one day must arrive, together with an admixture yet more
opposed,--an admixture as certain nevertheless as is the march of time,
but which cannot now be named, and which these classes would each and
all shudder to contemplate,--an amalgamation that has already begun, and
is in truth in full progress; and this increase a falling-off in the
price of cotton, so as to render slave-labour less valuable, will
infallibly hasten in a ratio perfectly geometrical.

Time is the surest emancipator after all; for proof of which look not to
the prospect presented here, but turn back on the old States. At what
period did philanthropy triumph there? why exactly at that point where
interest joined issue with its dictates; the slave was, in fact,
admitted as a hired labourer, when he ceased to be profitable as a
bondsman: and that day will arrive here also, as surely as that the sun
shines on Louisiana; and the lower valley of the Mississippi will yet
be peopled by a free and hardy race, born on the soil made each year
more fruitful and less pestilential, until it shall rival the valleys of
the Ganges or the Nile, if not in the splendour of art, at least in the
more solid and enduring possessions,--education, intelligence, and
freedom; for only whilst so sustained can the institutions of democracy
exist; these once failing to advance hand-in-hand with population, the
whole fabric will, with inconceivable rapidity, be resolved into a rude
anarchy for some bold mind to re-form and re-model.

One of the greatest works now in progress here, is the canal planned to
connect Lac Pontchartrain with the city. In the month of February it was
completed to within three miles of the lake; and as it was a pleasant
ride to the point where the digging was in progress, I two or three
times visited the scene, after its bearings had been explained by the
two intelligent persons under whose guidance I first penetrated the
swamp.

I only wish that the wise men at home who coolly charge the present
condition of Ireland upon the inherent laziness of her population,
could be transported to this spot, to look upon the hundreds of fine
fellows labouring here beneath a sun that at this winter season was at
times insufferably fierce, and amidst a pestilential swamp whose
exhalations were foetid to a degree scarcely endurable even for a few
moments; wading amongst stumps of trees, mid-deep in black mud, clearing
the spaces pumped out by powerful steam-engines; wheeling, digging,
hewing, or bearing burdens it made one's shoulders ache to look upon;
exposed meantime to every change of temperature, in log-huts, laid down
in the very swamp, on a foundation of newly-felled trees, having the
water lying stagnant between the floor-logs, whose interstices, together
with those of the side-walls, are open, pervious alike to sun or wind,
or snow. Here they subsist on the coarsest fare, holding life on a
tenure as uncertain as does the leader of a forlorn hope; excluded from
all the advantages of civilization; often at the mercy of a hard
contractor, who wrings his profits from their blood; and all this for a
pittance that merely enables them to exist, with little power to save,
or a hope beyond the continuance of the like exertion.

Such are the labourers I have seen here, and have still found them
civil and courteous, with a ready greeting for the stranger inquiring
into their condition, and a quick jest on their own equipment, which is
frequently, it must be admitted, of a whimsical kind.

Here too were many poor women with their husbands; and when I
contemplated their wasted forms and haggard sickly looks, together with
the close swamp whose stagnant air they were doomed to breathe, whose
aspect changeless and deathlike alone met their eyes, and fancied them,
in some hour of leisure, calling to memory the green valley and the pure
river, or the rocky glen and sparkling brook of their distant home, with
all the warmth of colouring the imaginative spirit of the Irish peasant
can so well supply, my heart has swelled and my eyes have filled with
tears.

I cannot hope to inspire the reader with my feelings upon a mere sketch
like this; but if I could set the scene of these poor labourers' exile
fairly forth, with all the sad accompaniments detailed; could I show the
course of the hardy, healthy pair, just landed, to seek fortune on these
long-sighed-for shores, with spirits newly lifted by hope and brighter
prospects from the apathy into which compulsory idleness and consequent
recklessness had reduced them at home; and then paint the spirit-sinking
felt on a first view of the scene of their future labour,--paint the
wild revel designed to drown remembrance, and give heart to the
new-comers; describe the nature of the toil where exertion is taxed to
the uttermost, and the weary frame stimulated by the worst alcohol,
supplied by the contractor, at a cheap rate for the purpose of exciting
a rivalry of exertion amongst these simple men.

Next comes disease, either a sweeping pestilence that deals wholesale on
its victims, or else a gradual sinking of mind and body; finally, the
abode in the hospital, if any comrade is interested enough for the
sufferer to bear him to it; else, the solitary log-hut and quicker
death. Could these things with their true colours be set forth in detail
before the veriest grinder of the poor that ever drove the peasant to
curse and quit the soil of his birth, he would cover his eyes from the
light of heaven, and feel that he yet possessed a heart and human
sympathy.

At such works all over this continent the Irish are the labourers
chiefly employed, and the mortality amongst them is enormous,--a
mortality I feel certain might be vastly lessened by a little
consideration being given to their condition by those who employ them.
At present they are, where I have seen them working here, worse lodged
than the cattle of the field; in fact, the only thought bestowed upon
them appears to be, by what expedient the greatest quantity of labour
may be extracted from them at the cheapest rate to the contractor. I
think, however, that a better spirit is in progress amongst the
companies requiring this class of labourers; in fact it becomes
necessary this should be so, since, prolific as is the country from
whence they are drawn, the supply would in a little time cease to keep
pace with the demand, and slave labour cannot be substituted to any
extent, being much too expensive; a good slave costs at this time two
hundred pounds sterling, and to have a thousand such swept off a line of
canal in one season, would call for prompt consideration.

Independent of interest, Christian charity and justice should alike
suggest that the labourers ought to be provided with decent quarters,
that sufficient medical aid should always be at hand, and above all,
that the brutalizing, accursed practice of extorting extra labour by
the stimulus of corn spirit should be wholly forbidden.

Let it be remembered that, although rude and ignorant, these men are not
insensible to good impressions, or incapable of distinguishing between a
kindly and paternal care of their well-doing, and the mercenary
cold-blooded bargain which exacts the last scruple of flesh it has paid
for.

I have inquired much, and have heard many worthy, well-informed men
comment upon this subject, and feelingly regret the existing system; but
it is only by the close supervision of the Directors of Public Works
that this crying evil can be effectively checked, and the condition and
character of the labourer improved.[4]

At present the priest is the only stay and comfort of these men; the
occasional presence of the minister of God alone reminds them that they
are not forgotten of their kind: and but for this interference, they
would grow in a short time wholly abandoned and become uncontrollable;
unfortunately of these men, who conscientiously fulfil their holy
functions, there are but too few,--the climate, and fatigue soon
incapacitates all but the very robust. Those who follow the ministry of
God in the swamp and in the forest must have cast the pride of flesh
indeed out from them, since they brave the martyr's fate without a
martyr's triumph.

If a few of our goodly Cheltenham Parsons, the non-resident gentlemen,
who so laudably desire to uphold their church, were to come here, they
would find ample employment for their leisure, and might make hosts of
converts; for courage and kindliness of heart are irresistible in
appeal; and it is on these foundations, whether amongst the bogs and
mountains of Ireland, or in the wilderness of America, that the Catholic
priest of our days has built the unimpeachable influence he exercises
over his people.

The gloomy picture of the labourer's condition, which my mention of this
canal has drawn from me, may by some be considered overcharged; but I
protest I have, on the contrary, withheld details of suffering from
heat, and cold, and sickness, which my heart at this moment aches when I
recall.

To return to the canal. It in all probability will never be used for the
purpose designed, even when completed; it was, in fact, the bonus
proffered to the legislature by a bank which required a certain charter;
it will, at least, answer the purpose of a great drain, and so far must
prove of infinite local importance, the more especially since it is in
contemplation to redeem the whole of the surrounding swamp,--a measure
that, if effectually carried out, will probably render New Orleans as
healthy as any city south of the Potomac.

The police of this place I should imagine at present better than in the
Northern cities, since noise or disturbance in the streets is a thing
unknown, and after ten at night everything is usually still and quiet,
excepting upon the Levee, where work at this season appears to go on by
night as by day.

FOOTNOTES:

[3] These ways oftimes, in continued wet weather, become impassable, to
the great injury of business: but remedy there is none, save patience;
for any animal under the size of an elephant would be lost in the mud,
swallowed wholly up.

[4] That this task would not be difficult I have the best authority for
asserting,--the experience of one of the ablest and most
honourable-minded men of this or any other country, Captain R. S----n.
Finding on the great work, in the conducting of which he was a
principal, the usual number of riots and disputes, he, with the
practical good sense for which he is distinguished, applied himself to
discover the cause: this he generally traced up to some real or fancied
injustice complained of by the labourer, and quickly resented by outrage
on his part. He next personally interfered, heard patiently, decided
fairly, and in a kind manner made clear the ground of every decision for
or against the labourers. In a short time he by this course completely
won the confidence of these poor fellows, and not another riot occurred.
In his absence even, however prolonged, any dispute growing to violence
was quieted in a moment by one of the elders suggesting that they should
wait quietly till the Captain came home.

No decision, however, against their views was ever objected to; and it
was most gratifying to me to hear Captain S----n assert that he had
never met with any class of men whose regard for even-handed justice
appeared so strong as that of these poor Irish labourers.



THE LEVEE MARKET.


Viewed at an early hour, the large market-place on the Levee is a lounge
of a most amusing kind, exhibiting at one glance a more striking picture
of the variety of people to be found here than might be attained in any
other place.

Here may be seen the Spanish creole, cloaked and capped, followed by a
half-naked slave, making, with a grave quiet air, and in slow deliberate
speech, his frugal market. Bustling along directly in his wake, but with
frequent halts and crossings from side to side, comes a lively daughter
of France, her market-slave leading a little boy fancifully dressed _à
la hussarde_; with these she holds a running fire of chatter, only
interrupted by salutations to passing friends, or nods and smiles to
those more distant. Look yet a little longer, and, yawing along in
squads of three and four abreast, you will see sailors of all kinds
cheapening fruit and vegetables, together with cooks, stewards, and all
their dingy subordinates. Here is the up-looking, dare-devil Jack of Old
England; the clean, holiday-looking, well-dressed seaman of Marseilles,
with large gold ear-rings twinkling beneath the rim of his high-crowned
bright glazed hat. Next, moving stealthily by, with an uneasy, restless
look, notice a couple of low-built, light-limbed, swarthy fellows,
moustached and bearded, one wearing a red shirt and a broad-leafed
Panama hat, the other clad in a white _blouse_ with a scarlet worsted
sash drawn about his hips, a Montero cap, naked legs, and white canvass
slippers.

These fellows might, on the high seas, be easily mistaken for pirates;
here they are understood to belong to some one of the many snaky
schooners lying here, hailing from Havannah and the various ports along
the Mexican Gulf, and whose calling may be honest enough, but which
certainly look as though the necessity of stowing a cargo had been quite
overlooked in their building.

Meantime, circling about the outside of the building, stroll a band of
twenty or thirty Indians, dressed in all the picturesque, draggled
finery it is their delight to exhibit; the men half drunk or wholly so,
thrusting, as they pass, their filthy fingers into the negro girls'
baskets, and hiccuping forth some inquiry, to be repulsed by a
monosyllable or a look of contempt and anger, the sight of which excites
sorrow that any creature wearing the form of humanity should be fallen
so low as to be subject to it. The squaws are never seen in this brutal
condition; they crawl about with a load of light wood at their backs,
or, having disposed of their venture, may be seen seated on their heels,
telling their beads, or pulling their fingers through their thick black
hair, that, if kept clean, would be beautiful, or in some other way
tricking forth their charms to all advantage; for, though generally as
ugly as sin, they are as full of coquetry as any _belle_ of May-fair,
and as vain of admiration; of the which, to say truth, they appear to
come in for more than a share from our tars, two or three of whom may
usually be seen lounging alongside the youngest of the native group,
looking things they know not how to utter.

In this market of the Levee there is also an abundant display of fish,
flesh, and fowl, with as varied a store of earth's fruits as any one
place can produce. In the month of February we had here peas, lettuces,
beans of several kinds, kale, celery, pine-apples, bananas, oranges,
limes, lemons, with sweet potatoes and edibles of various other kinds
whose names were strange to me.

The beef here is, in appearance, inferior to that of the North, although
fed on the finest pastures in nature,--those of the Ohio and Kentucky,
but injured by the neglect and ill feeding consequent upon a voyage of
ten or twelve hundred miles in a crowded steam-boat.

The creole mutton, I should say, is equal to the best in this country,
being small-boned, sweet, and very fat. The great disadvantage the
_artiste_ labours under is the not being able to keep the meat long
enough to become quite tender; such is this climate that decomposition
follows quickly on death, and here the man is buried or the mutton eaten
without waiting until either becomes cold.

The _Place d'Armes_, near this market, is a large square, having an area
enclosed with rails in the centre: here the Indians usually congregate,
and within this a curious-looking group or two may commonly be found. To
see the tribe at toilet is not a little amusing: some hair-hunting,
catching and cracking this game, with a keen sporting look and an
obvious relish of the pursuit quite _varmint_; others mixing red or
white paint for the adornment of the nose, cheek, or eye, as custom or
taste may decide.

I could not rightly discover whether these marks were simply directed by
caprice, and assumed or laid aside at pleasure, or whether they were
worn in compliance with some imperative custom, and having a
translatable meaning, as some historians assert. Certain is it that I
have noticed a little _Choctaw belle_, with whom I had established a
sort of eye-flirtation of many days' standing; on one morning appealing
to my taste by an insinuating streak of white lead over each of her
bright eyes; on the next, giving my heart a stab from under a crimson
half-moon; and on the third, killing me quite by a broadside from each
chubby cheek, the right having at me with a ball of fiery red, the left
exhibiting one of jet black.

The costume of these people, when divested of the eternal filthy
blanket, is showy, and at times even becoming, and pleasing; bright
colours, fringes, tags, beads, and feathers of the ostrich, parroquet,
and eagle, constituted the raw material which the taste natural to the
sex, and the love of finery inherent in the squaw, has to work upon.



JOURNAL RESUMED.


_Monday, March 16th._--During the last three days the weather has been
warm, but not oppressively so: last evening a light shower of rain was
followed by a lovely night. I am leading a dissipated life here, and
engaged for every day I can yet count upon--must prepare for flight from
this Capua, but how? that's the question! since up the Mississippi I
won't steam again, that's poz!

Visited a noble packet called the Shakspeare, in which I feel hugely
tempted to take passage, although by the route newly opened through
Florida there is greater certainty, albeit with a good deal of hard work
to calculate upon.

_17th._--St. Phaudrig's day. Engaged to dine with the sons of the saint.
Rain falling in torrents, no stirring out; by the afternoon a deluge
threatens us, the streets are turned to rivers, and our neighbour swamp
is become a lake, above which the naked cypress-trees, hung with their
sombre drapery of moss, tower like the masts of some goodly navy whose
hulls lie sunk beneath. Boats will soon be required, for every gutter is
become a branch of mother Mississippi.

About three o'clock P.M. it subsided a little, and we were able to get
through in a well-horsed carriage to the French Theatre, in the
ball-room of which our rendezvous was appointed, dinner being laid in
another of the suite of apartments appropriated to public purposes. We
mustered about a hundred strong, and a more creditable set of children
no saint ever had to his back. About midnight the party broke up, and,
despite the rain, the shamrog had never presided over a gayer table.

_18th._--A glorious morning; paid my visits, made adieus; and after,
rode out to the lake by the canal and _Bayou St. John_. But what a
change had taken place since my last ride here, just three days back!
then all was torpid, decayed, and dead; the forest was voiceless, and
the waters oily and stagnant as though never intended for the use of
living thing. On this day all nature appears awakened, as if by magic,
and vegetation actually seems to proceed before our eyes; in every dyke
the water-snakes are gliding about with their graceful crests reared
above the surface, and on lake and lagoon bask shoals of mullet,
rejoicing in the warm waters of the swamp. The lazy alligator is
dragging himself across the path, newly roused from his winter lair. The
cardinal, the mocking-bird, and the gaudy red-bird, are all darting to
and fro, in pursuit of the various insects that flutter about the air.
The very swamp is putting on a face of beauty, and all nature appears to
hail the arrival of spring. Never was change so complete, so sudden, and
so attractive.

Returning, halted by a camp of Choctaws, consisting of a dozen huts,
about which crawled or ran as many children of all ages, looking
remarkably healthy and well-formed. In a hut, larger and better made
than any other, sat the chief and his squaw, upon whose lap lay
numberless strings of blue and white beads, which she was admiring and
arranging with as much delight as a London girl would her first suite of
pearl.

The chief himself was a stout, honest-faced fellow, and I suppose an
active hunter, for the sides of the hut, which was open in front, were
hung with various skins, and the earth was closely carpeted with the
like trophies: several clean-looking baskets were hanging about the
back of the hut; over the fire, in front, was suspended an iron pot, and
to attend to this seemed the present business of the chief.

This was a portion of a tribe or nation, once very powerful and numerous
in the South; it is now, however, scattered and broken up; many families
under their several chiefs have departed for the Western wilderness,
many more for the tomb. They begged for money as the natives usually do,
but receive with equal indifference the coin or a refusal.

_Friday, 20th._--The ship Shakspeare, according to the owners' promise,
was to sail this day, but sail she did not. Passed an uncomfortable
morning from being kept the best part of it in uncertainty. Almost wish
I had proceeded two days ago by the route through Florida. H----s
gravely assures me it is all for the best, and J. H----n coolly echoes
his philosophy, although both one and the other of the villains are "as
hot Jacks" in their mood "as any in all Italy," Day very sultry, or, as
a countryman of mine here, calls this sort of muggy heat, "Vile
mucilaginous weather."

_21st._--Again a delay, and a put-off till to-morrow; three of our
passengers now deserted, taking the steamer up the river for Louisville;
was half tempted to follow their example, but don't like to cut my
Shakspeare. I verily think, were the ship called by any other name, I
would quit the mess. The bard was wrong when he made Juliet say "what's
in a name?"

The city is hot and humid, as though it were washing-day above, and the
sun's rays intercepted by wet blankets. In the evening, strong symptoms
of a refreshing thunder burst: sat till after midnight _sans_ coat or
cravat, striving to keep cool; about that time the rain began to
descend, and soon after up came a breeze, under whose influence I crept
beneath my musquito curtain to fall sound asleep in five minutes.

_Sunday._--Called up early. Shakspeare about to quit the Levee: find out
that I have slept through a regular tornado, for to that complexion am I
informed the night breeze came at last. Day clear, fresh, and pure, like
a fine June morning at home; a difference of twenty-eight degrees
between to-day and yesterday; got a hasty breakfast, and learned that
the wind "sits in the shoulder of our sail," or rather of our steam,
since under such convoy do we seek the sea.

At eight A.M. got on to the Levee, and found the Shakspeare already
linked to her fiery mate; bade farewell to the many friends who have
daily attended to add a last link to the chain of kind recollections in
which they have bound my memory.

The market, close by which we lay, was, being Sunday morning, crowded by
a chequered assemblage of European, Quadroon, Negro, and Indian, all
gabbling, pushing, and purchasing in company. We unmoored in very
capital style, though pretty closely jammed, for a ship of seven hundred
tons, and in one minute after were whirled into the mid current of the
Mississippi: the vast crescent of the water-front of the city showing
through a curtain of thick masts, the hulls belonging to which floated
level with the roofs of the highest houses: for the river, at this
period, ran in its course far raised above the city.

The wind blows hard, but a clearer or more bracing day heart could not
desire; and, contrasted with the horrid yesterday, it is indeed most
welcome.

We found some difficulty, owing to the violence of the breeze, in
getting into that extraordinary bend called the "English turn;" but
afterwards we rushed past the fine sugar plantations lying along our
course with great velocity: we had a powerful steam-boat, and wind and
current with us.

About sunset passed Fort Jackson, occupying a well-selected bend of the
river, and commanding a long reach either way. This is one of the works
projected and finished by French engineers, and is said to be of a
first-rate description.

Shortly after passing this fort, a sight of unparalleled grandeur broke
upon us. The western horizon was yet ruddy with the last light of
sunset, and was attracting my attention, contrasted as it was with the
dull stream and dismal jungle around us. Suddenly I observed a bright
flame rush, as it were, over the distant surface of the swamp: at the
same moment we opened a noble reach of the river, and a vast fire was
perceived, steadily advancing over the prairie land on our left, which
character of surface is continued from here to the Balize, covered by a
rank growth of lofty cane or reeds.

As night drew on, the fire seemed to gather greater strength, rolling
away to leeward a mighty ocean of flame; whilst nearer to us lines might
be observed creeping close to the earth, devouring the dry grass, and
marching right in the teeth of the wind, sheltered by the tall cane next
doomed to fall.

Whilst viewed far off, the effect was exactly that of a great city
delivered to the flames: the trees growing by the river's brink, and
scattered here and there over the prairie, showed like some yet standing
spires, whilst here and there a tall cedar might be caught just falling;
the dwarf trees and withered shrubs in front, with the flames quivering
through their branches, might readily be imagined a remnant of the
population fleeing from the destruction pressing on their rear, with the
sullen Mississippi for their only refuge.

We overtook and sailed down, side by side, with this mighty
conflagration for an hour or more, through water made bright by the
fiery reflection: at last, we outstripped its speed, but, for three
hours after, I never withdrew my eyes from this the grandest sight it
ever was given to me to contemplate; nor was the effect at all
diminished though changed by distance. At one turn of our course we were
presented with a _coup d'oeil_ of fearful grandeur; it seemed as though
the flame had crossed the broad river, and formed a half circle, whose
left extremity was lost in distance, and whose right pursued our path,
rolling after us a lofty wall of fire, from behind which burst wreaths
of smoke, of different degrees of darkness, as though shot up from some
volcano's crater, whilst the more distant masses formed gradually into
clouds of snow, whose lower edges were tinged with mingled lines of gold
and jet.

The wind blew half a gale at about N.N.W., and it was calculated that
our pace could not be less than twelve miles per hour; that of the fire,
therefore, must have been seven or eight, since, despite the turns of
the river, we were closely followed by it for three hours, and very soon
after we anchored at the Balize it again overtook us, rushing on
unchecked whilst it found a supply of food, until extinguished in the
waters of the gulf.

I had before seen the prairie on fire, that is, small districts of mere
dry grass in a blaze; but, although striking from its novelty, it had
none of the grandeur belonging to this wild conflagration. The fuel here
offered to the flame was of an enduring quality, and continued to burn a
fiery red after the first rush of flame had passed over it and onward;
and the next change it assumed was one of singular beauty: the
reflection of the burnt cane, yet standing in perfect order as it grew,
only made transparent by the action of fire, had the appearance of the
harvest of an Eastern tale, composed of grain whose tall stalks were of
burnished gold; whereas on the grass of the wide prairies the effect of
the fire is lost as soon as passed, the bare and blackened soil alone
being left behind.

We arrived at the bar by 10 P.M. and let go an anchor for the night: the
water reported by our pilot to be about eleven feet; a comfortable
hearing, when it is considered that the Shakspeare draws fourteen.

There is now here, hard and fast, an English ship called the Coromandel,
which has been on the bar for the last forty days. Several vessels
intend pushing over, we understand, at the same time we do in the
morning.

_Monday, 23rd._--On deck at six A.M. Our pilot, I find, declines
crossing till the afternoon, when the tide will possibly, he says, be
higher; the rise of water is, however, dependent upon the strength of
the sea-breeze forcing the tide of the gulf up against the current of
the great river. No rise of the Mississippi above, however high, affects
the bar here in the least perceptible degree.

Heaven send us well into blue water! for any place having a more
desolate aspect than this sight never lighted on: not a sign of
vegetation is visible, except the brown rank-growing reeds upon our
right, where no fire has yet been. To the north, all is blackness on
land, and dull and dead at sea: along the course of the water-line, logs
of timber of every size, and trees of every kind, lie strewn, sometimes
scattered singly, and in other places accumulated into enormous beds or
rafts.

On every side is presented a dead level, muddy water, or land barely
showing above it. One might have imagined, looking around here, that the
great Deluge was but now subsiding, and this, the ruined world, left for
the remnant of humanity, gathered here, to weep over. Silence and
solitude reigned absolute, and the only evidence of our not being alone
was to be found in the three or four ships scattered within sight.

As the morning advanced, each ship hoisted the colours of her nation:
several schooners came down near us, tugged along by a powerful
steamer; the Mexican and Brazilian flags were amongst them.

I find, too, that even this just redeemed soil is tenanted; here are
eyes that find in it the charms of home. A couple of natives came
alongside, with a boat-load of fine oysters; viewing them as samples, I
should imagine the air not over salubrious at the Balize, for they were
miserable-looking, blighted beings, "but half made up," and shook like
aspen-leaves in the sharp air of morning.

About two P.M. the pet steamers of the bar, the Pilot and the Grampus,
ran down to us, and made fast to the ship's sides: away we went for a
dash at the pass, the object being to force a ship drawing nearly
fifteen feet over a bar having upon its ridge just twelve feet.

We soon grounded, as was anticipated; when, after a couple of hours'
tugging, we were left by our steamers, although one of their skippers
had sworn stoutly in the morning that he never had quitted a ship on the
bar, and never would. Three vessels that had got under weigh in company
with the Shakspeare were set fast about a hundred yards farther over
than ourselves, and now lay right a-beam of the Coromandel drawing
seventeen feet: when she will forge over is past all calculation; our
own chance of a speedy move does not appear to me very bright.

All day set firm, a little movement perceptible at night: contemplate
returning to New Orleans if a boat goes up to morrow.

_Mem._--Never go by sea if in any haste, however tempting the prospect:
just one week lost to-day, in addition to much vexation of spirit.

To complete the discomfort of our condition, the weather is raw and
cold; clouds above, mud and misery below and about.

_Tuesday, 24th._--Ship forging ahead slowly. At meridian the Spanish
ship got away, and, in an hour after her, over slid the bark, leaving us
gazing after them with longing eyes.

About six P.M. the Shakspeare took a long slide, just clearing the
bowsprit of the Coromandel. Breeze getting up from S.S.E. a little sea
coming in. Our pilot, it seems, does not know when the tide is at its
highest, but thinking we might slide over suddenly in the night, this
efficient person now quitted us, taking to our larger neighbour, whose
chance, I am sorry to say, does not seem great of a hasty removal. She
lies nearly on her beam-ends, with very little motion, thirteen feet
water under her bowsprit end.

After amusing myself all day taking different bearings, and calculating
each inch we made, got disgusted at last, and about midnight crept into
bed, praying Heaven henceforward to be kept clear of all bars, from this
of the Balize to the bar of the Old Bailey; although I do think, if I
had a choice, I should prefer being arraigned for highway-robbery, or
any other gentlemanlike felony, at the latter, to the being kept for a
month weltering in mud upon the former.

_Wednesday, 25th._--Prospect a little brighter, a swell setting in from
the eastward; the ship evidently working over, as we now have sixteen
feet water within half our length ahead: day mild and clear, with a
south-easterly breeze: all the passengers busy noting our snail-like
progress: the poor Coromandel, which is fixed as a rock, affords us an
excellent _land_-mark; we have slipped by her inch by inch. At three
o'clock P.M. the ship's bow is all alive, the heel alone hangs on the
ridge: a French brig is just taking the bar, and rapidly nears us. At
four P.M., just as the Frenchman came abreast of us, and her crew
raised a cheer, the Shakspeare launched forward, as though just sent
from the stocks; and, as all hands of us were on deck, with the poop and
forecastle both well manned, we gave forth an involuntary hurrah, in
which the crew of the Coromandel, who were all forward watching the
result, heartily joined: the cheer of the dashing little Frenchman was
in this way fairly drowned.

Our captain seems a smart hand; he had his sails trimmed, and the
Shakspeare heading seaward, in less than no time: nor was it long before
we reached the boundary line of the great river. At some six or seven
miles from the bar a well-defined line is observable, stretching away
north and south, with a regular curve outward. On all sides within this
arch the water is thick and muddy, and immediately without this is the
clear deep blue of the gulf; yet the influence of the current of the
Mississippi is sensibly felt full seventy miles to the southward, its
strength being found to set in that direction.

Our breeze freshened gradually all the evening, until by midnight it
blew a rattler; but, thank Heaven, we are clear of the mud; no more
lead-lines bandying about the decks.

_Friday, 27th._--How time flies! and yet how same has been my existence
since this day week,--five days of expectation, with but two of action;
yet the fifty-secondth part of the year is away scarce marked! One is
here actually compelled to turn back to the date of one's last _mem._
and look what day one has fallen on, so hard is it to keep note of time
without occupation, or the remembrancers that surround us in our daily
affairs on shore. I do not wonder at Crusoe notching his stick; the
wonder is, that he should have been able to decide whether or no to-day
was yesterday.

All is calm and fixed above, with a long easterly swell rolling under
our foot, which does not seem likely to subside, although, as our
captain informs me, unusual at this time of year. Large logs of
blackened timber drift about, reminding us of the great river within
whose influence we yet unhappily remain, although but twenty hours of
fair wind would lead us round the Tortugas, within the influence of the
gulf-stream. Employed all my morning shooting at bottles as empty as
myself; this, with eating, drinking, and _ecarté_, forms the amusement
and occupation of the day. I have heard of people who could read and
write on ship-board; but, for myself, protest I never could do either
with the least possible satisfaction.

Last night the Connecticut steamer passed close by us, bound for
Havannah; I could not help wishing she had been compelled to give Billy
Shakspeare a pull.

Whilst at whist in the night, a passenger was reported dead of cholera.
"Well," said our chief, "if he's dead, we must bury him, that's all." It
was an old man, whose only daughter, with her husband and child, were on
board; and the report is, that he has been grossly neglected by this
pair, having been very well when received.

_Saturday, 28th._--Seven A.M.; went upon deck, and was delighted to find
stun-sails on both sides, a clear blue sky above, reflected on a sea of
the same colour, only crested with wreaths of snowy whiteness: wind
about west by north. What an instantaneous elasticity does the spirit
gather up from a change like this! I had quitted my room despondingly,
having slept sound and hearing no indications of a breeze; the dull
heavy creak of the bulk-heads alone spoke of motion; when, on gaining
the poop-deck, a fair, free breeze, and an atmosphere filled with life
and vigour, awaited to be hailed.

Our dead passenger was uppermost in my mind, and I made inquiry of the
officer of the watch respecting the hour appointed for committing the
corpse to the sea, until that time when Judgment might claim its own
from the deep caves of ocean. I found, however, that the old man was in
no way prepared to avail himself of this day's sunshine for his dark
journey, being, on the contrary, alive if not merry.

It appears that, whilst busied about the last offices offered by the
living to the dead, signs of life had been discovered by his attendants,
and the expiring flame gently reinvigorated by judicious friction and
brandy and water, the old man's ancient bane, and now his antidote. I
hastened to see this dead-alive, and found him perfectly conscious of
his restoration to "this breathing world;" but I imagine the respite can
only be for a very limited period. Captain Collins had the jolly-boat
fitted up for him on the main-deck, and, when placed in it on a clean
comfortable bed, his pulse was barely perceptible; his eye was glazed
and dim, and his frame emaciated to a degree that was painful to
contemplate. The daughter is a fair-haired devil of two-and-twenty, tall
and hearty, but exhibits a callous want of feeling and a disregard of
opinion, seldom met with in the most ruffianly of our sex, and truly
shocking in a woman.

The father, I learn, is from the state of New Jersey, where he possesses
a good farm, and flocks and herds, to which this Goneril will succeed on
his demise; hence it is that she looks upon his nurses with no love or
gratitude. The poor old man, in hopes of augmenting her store, had
quitted his pleasant possessions in Jersey, to seek wealth amongst the
swamps of the Mississippi. How long, I wonder, will the fluttering soul,
evidently plumed and eager for its flight, be held within the frail,
worn-out prison-house? Its flight!--but whither and to what? "Ay,
there's the rub!" the riddle, which this poor wretch will probably solve
before the wisest living philosopher could build a single conjecture
towards it.

Last night it appears the calf got loose in the stall, and joyfully
helped itself to the food supplied by nature to the mother for its
sustenance; in consequence, we, for this morning, are minus milk for
breakfast. With a decision prompt and unanimous, this act was voted a
robbery, the calf a felon, and the award death without delay. No counsel
was called for the hungry youngster, nor a voice heard in Nature's
behalf; the absence of the customary supply of milk was considered
evidence conclusive and damnatory; the hearts of judge and jurors were
superseded by their appetites, and doubtless the criminal calf must die
the death.

All day our fine wind follows us; the sun is hot; we have an awning
spread over the whole of the noble poop-deck, and within its shade we
lounge or lie about in the most perfect luxury of idleness, whilst the
Shakspeare majestically moves forward on her course, with just motion
enough to be pleasant.

_Sunday, 29th._--This morning we found our table abundantly supplied
with milk; which, together with a burnt-offering of the inconsiderate
calf's liver, bore undoubted evidence of the steward's prompt execution
of the court's decree. Thinking it a pity such an example of strict
justice should be lost to the world, I have, as far as this record goes,
done my utmost to preserve it. Wind still abaft the beam, blowing a
steady, constant sort of blow; sun cheerful, and sea all alive. About
meridian a shore-bird, rather like a woodcock, but considerably larger,
came fluttering round the ship, evidently wearied by long flight, yet
fearing to confide in our hospitality; and not without reason, faith!
for one of our passengers gave me notice of the stranger, and gravely
requested me to shoot it. I said nothing; but the ship and cargo could
not have bribed me to raise a barrel against that timid, storm-worn,
home-sick bird: no, if he would trust in me, he should have rest and
food, and so fly back to his lone mistress rejoicing.

Our old man breathes still, but shows little disposition to make an
effectual rally against the foe: for the rest, crew and passengers, all
are well. A number of Irish lads occupy the between-decks: they have a
fiddle amongst them, and "welt the flure" on the forecastle, every
night, with a perseverance that is most amusing.

_Thursday, April 2nd._--Since the 28th ult., light west and
south-westerly winds, with warm balmy days. This morning we lost one of
our crew overboard, an exceedingly pretty parroquet I had purchased at
New Orleans: it was an amusing, active little creature, and on several
occasions had crept through the bars of its cage, and slily gone up the
rigging, whence it had, after a time, descended of itself, or had been
brought down by one of the boys: but frequent peril incurred with
impunity breeds presumption, and towering ambition knows no safe
halting-place; so my poor, pretty Poll, on each new climb, gained a more
giddy and more dangerous elevation, until on this day, attracted by her
usual scream of exultation, I cast my eyes upwards in search of her, and
quickly made her out, strutting to the weather-end of the royal
yard-arm, the loftiest perch in the ship.

I augured ill of the attempt, and was watching her movements, when,
either impelled by an innate love of liberty, or lured by some fragrant
odour borne on the air from the distant woods of Florida, she made a
bold flight in the direction of the land, and fell into the sea a little
distance a-head of the ship.

Poll was a favourite, and Captain Collins a kind-hearted man: the
Shakspeare was brought by the wind, and various efforts made to near the
silly bird; but all in vain: we went rapidly past her, and left her to
the fate her presumption had courted. The efforts the little creature
made to approach the vessel were incessant, and almost painful to
regard: from the instant she touched the waves, her head was kept to the
ship, which she strove to regain by flapping along the surface with her
maimed short-clipped pinions. I felt that I could have saved her; and
only for shame, and the great trouble it would have necessarily caused,
I should assuredly have slipped over the side after the miserable little
fool.

Our fair wind sticks to us, and the gulf-stream is calculated to be from
three to three miles and a half in our favour; so that we are making
short work of it. All alive and well.

_Tuesday, 7th._--We last night got inside the Hook, but were blown off,
not being able to get a pilot. We are now thrashing at it with a bitter
head-wind. A great number of ships of all kinds are beating through the
bay, as well as numbers coming out with it all their own way. The
Shakspeare proves worthy the name, as she weathers and goes a-head of
every craft beating with us. A very smart ship, called the "Washington
Irvine," held our Billy a stout tug, but, after reading the name as she
went about a-head of us for many turns, we at last crawled to windward,
and Shakspeare took the lead, as even the "Washington Irvine" must admit
was perfectly proper.

At the quarantine station we landed our sick passenger, and were
permitted to proceed. By four P.M. I once more set my foot on the
dock-side of New York, after an absence of five months, and felt as
though I had again reached home.

Let me here remark, that during these five months I had travelled
through the roughest part of these States in every sort of conveyance,
and had been thrown amongst all classes of the community, yet never
received one rude word or encountered an inconvenience, save those
inseparable from the condition of the roads. Even the Southern mail, the
discomforts of which I have painted exactly as I experienced them, I
must in fairness admit is well managed, when the difficulties to be
encountered at the season of my journey are justly taken into
consideration. Their object is to get on; this, as long as possible, at
any risk, they are bound to do. It will be seen that, when a coach
cannot be dragged through, they nail a few boards on the axle, and
proceed with this lighter and less ticklish vehicle: it is true the
passengers suffer much; but only those exceedingly desirous to proceed
travel at such times, and without such a resort the machinery must stand
still.

Out of our party two stout men gave in at different stages; and another,
when I quitted America, had not recovered from the effects of exposure
to wet, loss of rest, and fatigue.

The journey ought not, in my mind, to be undertaken by any man who
regards his ease, after the month of November or before the month of
May. A new route is, however, already in use by coach and steam-boat
across Florida: a railroad is also in contemplation by the same line,
which, connected with the present ready means of gaining Charleston,
will probably, in a season or so, make the communication with Mobile and
New Orleans a trip of little inconvenience.

Still I consider that a near view of the border parts of Georgia and
Alabama, together with a sail down the noble river of that name,
watering, as it does, the richest lands in the world, and destined, as
it evidently is, to sustain a vast population on its banks, ought not to
be neglected by any man whose motives for travel have any higher aim
than mere amusement. For myself, I would not have missed the
contemplation of this truly elementary society, and the absolute
novelty it presents, for thrice the inconveniences it was my fortune,
during an uncommon series of bad weather, to encounter.



NEW YORK.


I passed the next two months between this city and Philadelphia, taking
leave of the audience of the latter city on Saturday, May the 9th,
attended by demonstrations of the kindest and most flattering regard.
The next week I idled between Princeton and New York. The Artists'
Exhibition was at this time open here, and it afforded me genuine
pleasure to see many pictures that were good, and numbers of early
attempts of a highly promising character.

I also visited an exhibition of pictures which had been proffered to
Congress at the sum of forty thousand dollars, in order that this
collection might form the foundation of a great national gallery; a
worthy object, and of which these pictures would have formed a
right-becoming commencement.

Here were specimens, and worthy ones, of many masters; amongst others a
Murillo, indisputably genuine, and, although a little faded in colour,
still worth a wilderness of most other productions. The subject was a
painful one too, being the agony of Christ on the Mount of Olives.

Never, surely, was the utter prostration of flesh and soul so speakingly
made out; bitter indeed must the cup have been so painfully contemplated
by one so meek, so patient of suffering; Omniscience only, being so
entreated, could yet have held it to the sufferer's pallid lips, or
contemplated with a fixed purpose the sorrowing eyes imploringly cast
upwards.

Before the kneeling Christ,--the worn and wasted man,--there floated an
angel worthy of the dying Psalmist's imagining, so unearthly, so
ethereal! What a full heart must the inspired painter have had as in his
mind's eye he purely shadowed forth this most perfect conception of one
of those who hold companionship with God! It was made up of all the
rarest traits of beauty, yet its loveliness was not of the world: the
veriest dullard looking on it would have paused in admiration; the most
brutal have gazed into those pure eyes, untainted by one earthly
feeling, one sinful thought, or impure desire. On my mind the effect was
thrilling: I have pictured to myself angels as poets have described
them, and have often before looked upon them such as they have been
conceived by Angelo, Correggio, and other master-spirits amongst men,
and have seen faces of theirs on which I could have looked unsatiated
again and again, and forms I could have loved with all my heart; but
never beheld an emanation of the Spirit of God, a thing only to be gazed
on holily and worshipped humbly, until I met with this angel of
Murillo's.

Were I Pope, the painter should be canonized as one visibly inspired
from heaven, and on whose visions angels must have waited, since earth
never could have supplied from its fairest a model for such expression
as he has here given to the comforter of that heart-broken Christ. It is
worth living virtuously, to die in the hope of such companionship
hereafter, and for all eternity. After having been for two years
deprived of the pleasure an enthusiast derives from the painter's art,
the mere contemplation of such a picture elevates and refines one's
spirit; the world and worldly feelings are forgot, and for a moment the
soul breathes freely within its earthly prison.

Here were three pictures of Sir Joshua Reynolds; one a group of the
Clive family, including the native Ayah holding a little girl on a
chair. This Indian nurse is painted to the life, graceful, animated, and
devoted; only for the difference of complexion, one might imagine the
delicate girl she looks on with such tender pride her own, and not the
offspring of the cold white woman whose eyes are fixed on you as she
stands _vis-à-vis_ to her stiff lord, who is dressed in a
rappee-coloured habit richly overlaid with gold.

This picture might very well be described as a fancy subject, and
designated Nature and Art. Opposite this fine picture of our English
master hung another group, by Rembrandt; making up in force and colour
what it lacked in delicacy and refinement. The subject was the De Witt
family; and each portrait wore that genuine stamp of truth that left no
question of their resemblance to the Dutch originals.

There were some sea-pieces by Backhuysen, and one by Vanderveldt;
several excellent landscapes; a couple of gallery pictures worthy a
place in the Pitti, together with Danby's Opening of the Sixth Seal. All
together, in fact, this was a collection of no mean pretensions, which
would have been an exceedingly creditable foundation on which to have
raised a national gallery. The sum which it was required Congress should
appropriate to the purchase was forty thousand dollars; and considering
how that assembly is constituted, how little most of its members know or
care about pictures, or of their intrinsic value, and how utterly
unimbued they are with any conception of the moral worth of art to a
young nation, I conceive it very creditable to the body that the motion
was negatived by only two votes.

How could a member from Illinois or Mississippi have justified such an
item in the budget to his constituents? I can fancy a group of good
Jackson men, after reading of an appropriation of forty thousand dollars
for the purchase of twenty pictures, raising their admiring eyes to a
portrait of the General swinging from the signpost, for the painting of
which, with a horse's head into the bargain, the tavern-keeper, Major
Jones, had paid no cent more than fifteen dollars; and then coming back
on the corrupt motives which could induce a vote of a couple of thousand
a-piece for pictures "that could not by any natural means be liker
nature, or more handsomely done, nohow, by any foreigner that ever
fisted a paint-brush."

The attempting Congress was, in truth, a mistake; but I cannot help
thinking that, had a subscription been opened in either of the great
Northern cities, or in New Orleans, for the purpose of founding a State
collection, a much greater sum might have been readily raised; since
there are in each of these cities numbers of wealthy individuals having
the good taste to rightly appreciate the value of such an Institution,
and public spirit enough to have effected the object, had it once
received the impetus. As it is, I could not help regretting that the
opportunity was lost, the pictures being advertised for sale without
reserve, the auction to take place in a few days.

On the 19th we had a grand military ceremony and procession, to receive
and escort to the Battery the remains of General Leavensworth, a brave
and very popular officer, who died in consequence of the fatigue and
privations incurred on the late prairie expedition amongst the tribes of
the Missouri. His remains were brought hither by way of the Lakes on the
route to the place of sepulture.

The volunteer corps were all turned out on this occasion, each
remarkable for the neatness of its dress and completeness of
appointment. The members of these corps also had a trim and dainty air
well becoming men playing at soldiers,--a game, by the way, no
full-grown biped who regards his personal dignity ought ever to play
after arriving at the years of discretion: for youths it is a cheerful
and becoming amusement enough; but for fat, full-blown gentlemen!
Nothing can be conceived more whimsical than the uncomfortable air of
ease it is necessary to assume on the occasion; particularly for such as
are promoted to the ticklish degree of field-officers; each of whom is
most unconscionably expected at one and the same instant to retain
possession of a hard-mouthed horse, a pair or two of reins, a sword, a
plumed _chapeau_, and his seat into the bargain, having only the
ordinary allowance of hands to help himself withal. It is all very
amusing for the bystanders to laugh at the cruel scrape their friends
are in when so be-deviled in a crowded street on a hot day; but let
those who conceive the matter so easy, only get appointed to the
dangerous eminence, and try how they like it.

Good-humour and cool temper are also indispensable requisites in a
commander of volunteer cavalry here; for on this occasion I beheld two
or three impatient carmen and restive jarveys very coolly charge upon
the flank of the advance of cavalry whilst the troop was filing across
the street out of the park, and persist in forcing the line, _malgré_
the civil remonstrance of the combined staff, who nevertheless yielded
with the best possible humour.

Now in England I have invariably noted that your chaw-bacon, when once
he buckles harness on, and has "the blast of war blown in his ears,"
becomes a very Tartar in his bearing, and is much less conciliating
towards his fellow snobs than is your regular soldier, whose trade is
war. With us, your yeomen whenever they have a chance, I have observed,
most uncivilly poke about the lieges with but and bayonet, or thump and
rump them with their chargers, and entice the ill-broken brutes with
insidious prods of the spur to swish their tails, if tails they have,
into the upturned phizes of their awe-stricken fellows.

Here, on the contrary, your volunteers "do their spiriting gently:" all
is good-nature and good manners; and a front is diminished, or a column
of companies in line of march is eased off to the right or left to make
way for carts or coaches, as the case requires, with a promptness which
is the more creditable from the fact that the execution of a change in
movement is no light matter.

The persons who appeared least to enjoy the _éclat_ of this military
_fête_ were the officers of the regular United States' army. They were
readily distinguished by their upright, soldier-like air, together with
a certain cold, half-proud expression, as though they discovered no fun
in the thing, and moreover were insensible to the honour of the
companionship they were admitted to. Added to the above characteristics
which struck me, I perceived that not one of these gentlemen had so much
as unsheathed his sword, or seemed aware of having such an appendage by
his side; whereas, of the gallant volunteers, there was not a man, from
the surgeon to the colonel, but had his iron out brightly flashing back
the sunbeams, although to some of the mounted officers this must have
been a matter of additional inconvenience, not to say considerable
peril.

During the course of the procession a salute was fired from the battery
by the mounted artillery corps; the bands played, and the bells of the
different churches on the line of march tolled for the dead.

On the whole, this little affair was very well conceived, and better
managed, than it would have been by any other citizen troops, excepting,
perhaps, the French, who appear to adopt the air and habit of soldiers
more perfectly than any other _bourgeoisie_ whatever.

On Friday, May 28th, I acted for the last time in the States, and so
ended at the Park, where I began, and as I began, to a crowded audience.
But the merry faces assembled here were no longer unknown to me; I was
on my _debût_, a stranger amongst strangers: I now felt myself
surrounded by personal friends, and by an audience which had frankly
welcomed me; which had continued to cherish my efforts by increasing
kindness and consideration, and which had now thronged here less perhaps
to witness a performance so often repeated, than to take leave of an
individual with whom the persons composing it had cultivated a close
acquaintanceship, and for whose talent they had encouraged a preference.

I am not of those who look upon the bond linking audience and actor as
a mercenary contract, for the hours during which the latter yields his
quantum of strength and spirit to the former for so much coin, and there
is an end. Were I, unhappily, possessed by such a morbid feeling, I
could no longer act, the spell would be broken. It is true, I might
constrain bone and sinew to administer to my necessities, and continue
to barter these with the public for bread; but the inspiring spirit
would be away, sunk past recall. Severed from the sympathies of those it
wrought for, it would cease to lighten upon the scene, which the power
of enlisting those sympathies alone redeems from contempt.

But it is not so, as every well-constituted mind will avouch.
Preference, and a constant expression of favour from his auditory,
necessarily beget a kind feeling in return: the actor is aware also that
he is not always in a condition to fulfil his part of the bond; illness,
low spirits, crosses, losses, or any of "the thousand ills that flesh is
heir to," rob the mind of its elasticity, and the body of its power; yet
rarely does the disappointed auditor turn on the favourite and act the
clamorous creditor.

Even in very extreme cases, what a spirit of forbearance have we seen
exhibited, what positive sympathy have we felt extended in our own time
to cherished players! It is at such moments that, more exposed, as he
is, to immediate censure, and more helpless than any other of the
servants of the public, he also feels himself more especially, more
kindly considered, and, if possessed of a kindly heart, cannot fail to
be touched by the feeling.

After illness or prolonged absence too, it is in the electric burst of
welcome, the enthusiastically prolonged cheer of gratulation, and in the
genuine pleasure sparkling from hundreds of uplifted ardent eyes, that
the man who devotes himself to win the player's meed receives his brief,
his shadowy it may be, but his inspiring triumph, accompanied by the
assurance that he is closely linked with the kindest feelings of those
who for the scene are subject to his thrall.

And when at length the hour of farewell comes, it is in the anxious
pause, the breathless attention, yet more impressive than all other
species of homage, that "the poor player," about to be "heard no more,"
reads the assurance that on the many young fresh hearts now subject to
his art he has indelibly engraven his name, often to be pleasantly
recalled in after hours, perhaps of pain and worldly care.

It is in the hope of gaining this living record he seeks consolation for
the absence of all other less perishable fame: expecting, hoping nothing
from posterity, he has a stronger claim upon the kindness of his
contemporaries, for whom alone he lives, and the feeling is reciprocal:
hence it is that these repay him with a superabundance of present
regard, to soften to him the consciousness of the oblivion to which his
memory is inevitably consigned, however great his genius, and however
ardent its longings "after immortality."



JOURNAL


OF A VISIT TO QUEBEC, VIA LAKE CHAMPLAN AND MONTREAL.


_Saturday, May 30th._--Went on board the De Witt Clinton steam-boat
about six P.M. and in the brightest possible night sailed up the most
beautiful of rivers. We were not crowded; my excellent friend C----e was
in company, on his way to take unto him a wife, and consequently the
trip was to me unusually agreeable. We kept pacing the deck until we had
passed through the deep shadows of the highlands, and floated over the
silvery expanse of Newburg Bay.

_Sunday, 31st._--Before six A.M. we were set ashore at Albany.
Breakfasted at the Eagle, and at nine A.M. left for Saratoga by the
railroad; thence by stage to Whitehall. The day was fine, the roads
rough enough to be sure. To the north lay the mountain State of
Vermont, and to the south a ridge of bold well-wooded heights. At
Glenfalls we passed the Hudson by a wooden bridge thrown over the very
foot of the cataract: luckily, whilst in the act of crossing, a trace
came unhitched, and we pulled up to order matters, just at the centre of
the misty abyss. Thus were we afforded ample leisure to look on the wild
fall, which, when in the wilderness, must have been a glorious scene;
for, disfigured as it now is by a mill or two of the ordinary kind, it
is still magnificent.

Our ride from this place to Whitehall reminded me much of some part of
North Wales: the enclosures are small, irregularly shaped, and
surrounded by walls of stone; many rills of clear water are crossed,
making their way to the Hudson through rough courses bestrewn with
fragments of rock: close on the left the river is itself visible every
now and then, whilst in the distance rise a confused heap of wild
mountains.

Numerous comely-looking pigs, together with groups of round-faced fat
children, barefooted and bareheaded, complete the resemblance.

For the last seven miles the road was of the roughest kind; but our
coachman rattled along merrily, getting us to Whitehall by ten P.M.

_Monday, June 1st._--At about one we quitted the comfortable inn here,
and the busy little town of Whitehall; and in the fine steamer Phoenix
thridded our way out of the swampy harbour formed by the head-waters of
the lake.

The hills about us rose boldly, and were covered with a variety of trees
now clothed in their freshest leaves, therefore beautiful to look on.
For many miles the channel continues narrow, at times confined by a
steep wall of marble surmounted by rich flowering shrubs; then, for a
short distance, laving the edge of some rich meadow slope. At last, the
lake expanded gloriously, reminding me, at a first glimpse, of the
Trossachs, save that here was less grandeur and deep shadow, the
outlines of the mountains were softer and the valleys more fertile.

The green mountains of the State of Vermont now bounded the lake upon
the north, and on the south rose the Giant-mountains of the State of New
York. These were for ever changing in form, as we crossed and re-crossed
the lake in order to land or receive passengers from stated points. This
circumstance also brought us acquainted with several very lovely
locations. Beneath the old fort of Ticonderago we halted for a few
minutes; and at Crown-point our stay was long enough to allow a rough
sketch to be taken of the roofless barracks and the ruined works.

In the course of our progress we ran into two or three of the sweetest
bays imaginable, where the calm lake was shadowed by steep mountains,
down whose sides leaped little tributary streams that rushed sparkling
and foaming into its turbid bosom.

It is most certain that, had these beauties been given to England or to
Scotland, they would each and all have been berhymed and bepainted until
every point of real or imaginable loveliness had been exhausted: for
myself, I have looked on many lakes, and by none have been more
delightfully beguiled than by a contemplation of this during some nine
hours of sunshine, sunset, and twilight, the last alone too brief.
Atmosphere, I am aware, does much; and this was one of those lovely days
whose influence expands the heart and takes the reason prisoner.

After quitting Burlington, where we encountered the returning
steam-boat, and received a large accession of force, I retired to my
berth, and enjoyed the soundest possible sleep.

_Tuesday, 2nd._--On deck at six A.M.: found the lake had assumed a
river-like appearance; the channel narrow, the banks low and swampy. The
day, too, was as much changed as the scene from yesterday, for a
drizzling rain was falling, and the clouds looked heavy and threatening.

As we neared St. John's, we had a slight custom-house visitation; and,
soon after landing, were served with an excellent breakfast; after which
came the bustle of departure. A string of carriages, of the same build
used throughout the States, occupied half the little street, all loading
heavily with baggage and bipeds, till by nine we got in motion, forming
quite a caravan.

The road lay for a time along the bank of the new canal destined to
unite the head-waters of the lake with the St. Lawrence, and was a
pleasant succession of ditch and bog-hole. It got better after a few
miles' jolting, but was nowhere tolerable, or creditable to his
Majesty's dominions.

On entering La Prairie, at noon, we found the good people annoyed by a
visitation which had not yet reached St. John's, namely, myriads of a
winged insect called the shad-fly; these covered and crowded every
building, filled the water and the air; they lodged on your clothes,
rendered sight difficult, and speaking impracticable, except with closed
teeth. Luckily, these flies neither sting nor bite; so that, setting
aside their appearance, and a certain tickling they inflict upon the
neck and face, they are easily borne with. At half-past one P.M. the
steamer Britannia quitted the port of La Prairie to cross the wide St.
Lawrence, to where our Land of Promise, Montreal, lay glittering in
sunshine some nine miles distant.

Half an hour landed us, and I received the pleasure of a grip of welcome
from my old friend W----w, who, with two or three of his
brother-officers, was on the look-out for me. Leaving my baggage to the
care of Sam, I stepped into the boat, and at once accompanied W----w to
St. Helen's, lying about half a mile from the main land.

In ten minutes more we were treading the verdant sod of the island, when
my first movement was to walk round it. I found it to possess every
variety of country in perfect miniature proportions: here were
wood-crowned steeps, shady glades, and open meadows, all offered in as
many changes as might well be managed on so small a surface. Viewed from
this, the city too looked very attractive, scattered over the southern
side of the great mountain.

This little island was the latest possession of the French in Canada.
Above a fort now in ruins was last elevated the white standard, which at
one time fluttered from the St. Lawrence to the Mississippi: thus
girdling, as it were, the British colonies, France one day looked to
sweep into the Atlantic.

Upon the westernmost point of the island, the tree still stands fresh
and vigorous beneath which the articles for the final cession of the
Canadas were agreed upon, and the last portion of the vast empire
contemplated for France by the genius of Richelieu for ever abandoned.

The present garrison is composed of a company of the Royal Artillery.
Here is an extensive depôt for stores, an armoury, two great magazines
containing not less than six thousand barrels of gunpowder and all the
other munitions of war.

In the afternoon I re-crossed the channel and surveyed Montreal, which
has an air completely French. The streets are irregular, narrow,
ill-paved, and moreover rejoice universally in a fishy savour in no way
detracting from their Gallic characteristics.

Here is a large building in progress, or at least standing in an
unfinished state, called the Cathedral, but, saving the size, putting
forth externally small claim to notice; whilst the interior might serve
as a model of ill-taste, both as to arrangement and colour, for the
especial enlightenment of all future building committees. The convents
appear well built; and many of the private dwellings are large, and of a
goodly aspect.

_Thursday, 4th._--Having fully made up my mind on this day to ride over
the race-course, visit the Rapids of _La Chine_, and make a complete
circuit of the mountain, I was resolute, my time being meted, to carry
out my plan despite a thunderstorm of the most violent kind, which began
as we were setting forth and continued all day, with one or two short
intervals of sunshine.

I found in the beauty of the country as seen from the Rapids, and from
the different points of the mountain, ample compensation: what my
complaisant companions felt I am not so sure of. We of a certainty
returned in the afternoon three of the most thoroughly soaked and
dirtiest gentlemen within the wide range of his Majesty's dominions. On
the whole, it was agreed that, having to choose between a ducking or a
dusting, we were better off served up soused in rain and only parboiled,
than we should have been smothered in dust and wholly roasted.

Dined at the hospitable mess of the 32nd, and quitted it late for St.
Helen's.

The lightning was frequent and very vivid during our row across the
rapid; and it was a curious speculation to narrowly watch an occasional
flash descending the tall conducting rods, and gambol along the roof of
the great magazine, as though prying for a sly crevice by which to
enter. It afforded a subject for consideration to calculate the next
possible resting-place of our little isle, should the ignition of six
thousand barrels of gunpowder treat us with an ascension by moonlight.

The soldiers' wives were in great alarm, poor souls! and some of the
chubby regimental urchins, destined to live on gunpowder, were now
crying their eyes out for very fear, as they clung to their mothers'
petticoats, where they gathered in little knots to watch the fantastic
course of the wild fluid.

Fatigue had prepared me for sleep, and my rest was undisturbed,
excepting that I conceived the sentry's quarterly cry of "All's well!"
sounded louder than usual, or that I heard it oftener than was my wont,
as it rose distinctly above the fitful roar of the storm.

_Friday, 5th._--All is perfectly calm, and gladness and increase of
beauty are spread over the newly-renovated field and forest. "What a
delicious spot is this same St. Helen's!"

Such, involuntarily, was my exclamation as I this morning thrust aside
the jalousies from my open window, and felt the pure air rush within my
little chamber, and saw the sunbeams dancing down the passing rapid, and
flashing from the bright roofs and spires of the more distant city. One
might have fancied the tales of El Dorado realized, and that the
precious metals were here devoted to cover the humblest dwellings.

I should like greatly to have a history of this sweet spot since the
first bold savage braved in his canoe the perilous rapid, and found
security beneath the shadow of these spreading trees.

In the winter, by the way, the passage is simple enough,--a natural
high road of ice unites it to Montreal; and last season, my friends
inform me, they drove their light _carioles_ over a finer way than Mac
Adam ever dreamed of, for full thirteen weeks.

Independent of the garrison, the population of St. Helen's is limited to
three or four families in the civil employ of the government, together
with the holder of a fine farm, a scion of the Green Isle, who bears the
unquestionable name of Mister Dolan; a man of little labour but much
Latin, whose humanities are at his finger-ends whilst his toes are out
of his brogues.

In right of a small rental paid to government, this worthy carefully
superintends the dilapidations performing by time and the climate upon
the neat cottage, and a couple of rustic pavilions erected by the taste
of Lady Dalhousie whilst her lord commanded here, together with an
inclosed garden, which would, if decently cultivated, supply Montreal
with fruit and vegetables, all of which, under the inspection of my
friend Mister Dolan, is fast retrograding into its primitive condition.

I this morning, at eleven, met my company at the theatre, a very neat
one; and, what with those already mustered, together with a windfall
just landed from Waterford, in the shape of a pretty woman and her
husband, in search of an engagement, I fancy my friend B----y and I may
manage to get up one night's fun for Montreal, though, for my own part,
I would rather idle than play.

Same night acted a couple of interludes to a full house, and an
exceedingly merry-humoured one; although the only really good thing was
the orchestra, composed of the excellent band of the 32nd regiment,
which had been kindly placed by the commanding officer at the disposal
of "the Lessee."

At a late hour took to the skiff for our quiet retreat, which rose, in
this time of moonlight, above the shining waters like some fairy garden
resting on a bed of mother-of-pearl. We sung Moore's Boat-song, and not
a sound except the appropriate soft plash of the oars came between us
and the echo that faintly repeated our chorus.

The echo from the island, by the way, is very distinct, and oft
repeated; and, on such a night as this, to stand beside the nine-o'clock
gun, listening to its bellow as it reverberates amongst the opposite
heights, is one of the things of these parts worth doing.

_Saturday, 6th._--Again, what sunshine! and how invigorating is the
wind, now breathing sweet music through the trees as their thick leaves
rustle above the swift river!

Two or three large rafts are in sight, their hardy crews straining on
the huge oars as they cross the rapids for the city. At measured
intervals their wild cry fills the air; whilst the notes of our island
bugles, together with the drums of the city, reply merrily and boldly,
as though flinging back the challenge of some approaching horde of
savage invaders.

And verily no beings can look more wild of aspect or attire than the
crews working the huge rafts which navigate these waters. Europeans,
Indians, and _Bois-brules_, as the half-breed is denominated, are all
found in this employ, but so much alike in equipment and complexion,
that, only for the round Saxon face, light hair, and blue eyes, here and
there distinguishable, it would be difficult to conceive them of
different lineage.

A pair of loose trousers of coloured serge or flannel, a sash of scarlet
worsted or wampum girt about the loins over a shirt of indescribable
hue, moccassins on the feet, and a red cap or bonnet of fox-skin, or not
unfrequently a shock of hair that despises any covering, and alike
defies the force of sun and storm, forms the common costume of these
sons of toil, whose lives, commonly of short duration, are wasted in
quick alternations of perilous labour and wild debauch.

Their rough mates, the boatmen of old Mississippi and the lakes, have
nearly disappeared; and how much longer steam and railway will yet leave
this calling open to the Tartar-spirits of the North, it is impossible
to say. At present they are evidently in full employ, for there is
hardly a reach of the rivers flowing about the isles of Montreal but is,
at some time or other throughout the day, laden by these cumbrous rafts,
often measuring one hundred feet in length by ten in width.

These masses are rafted from vast distances; and, during their course of
perhaps fifty days, their crews look for no covering: the rain descends
upon them, and the waves of the rapids rise over them, but they abide
both without shade or shelter; subsisting principally upon pork, dressed
or raw, as may be, and having for their beverage the stream whereon
they may chance to float, except during an occasional halt at some
stated point where whisky invites them to hold a deep but brief carouse.

At ten A.M. crossed to the city according to appointment, to meet three
friends in whose good company I was to visit



THE SAULT AU RECOLLECT.


I procured the stout charger whose quality of endurance I had well
tested on a former occasion. True to our time, we took the road, such as
it was, and, after an hour's hard riding, reached the river at the point
where several fine mills and a fishery bring constant grist to the
worthy monks of St. Sulpice, who are here the lords paramount of soil
and stream.

The fishermen appeared divided into two watches or squads, one of which
was actively casting for the shad, the other more pleasantly employed in
cooking them.

We took our stand upon a green point elevated a few feet above the river
it projected into; in front ran the Sault, or leap, raging like the
ocean when lashed by a gale, and churning amongst reefs of rock.
Opposite to us, at a distance of some half mile, stood a couple of very
spacious stone-built mills, their lofty substantial walls pierced by
numerous narrow windows, and surmounted by steep red roofs, high over
which waved a grove of noble trees: this was _l'île Jésu_, and the stand
whence we surveyed this scene the Isle of Montreal.

Whichever way we cast our eyes, up or down the stream, its course was
vexed and its mood chafed more or less; but before, and close upon our
right, was the wildest turmoil; and over an eddy of this, from off
temporary platforms of planks, the fishermen flung down the stream their
round landing-nets, as far as the eighteen-foot pole to which these were
affixed would permit, then painfully dragged them back against the
current, sometimes laden with fine shad, but oftener coming home empty,
to be again leisurely cast back.

The sameness of this movement, the softness of the turf, and the
difficulty attending conversation, had gradually lulled our little party
into a pleasant reverie; when, on a sudden, we were startled by faint
cheers borne on the downward breeze: we all sprang upon our feet in an
instant, and, looking upwards, caught sight of a monstrous bed of
timber bounding towards the Sault.

This was the very chance we had desired and were waiting for, and
intensely was my sight directed towards it. On the very centre of the
raft a tall pole was elevated, surmounted by a fanciful flag; at its
foot the Pilot, or _Conducteur_, was stationed, motioning the course
suggested by his glance at the state of the fall, towards which the mass
was hurried with a rapidity each instant seemed to accelerate; and, in
obedience to his directions, the active _rameurs_ were seen tugging at
the oars, and straining each sinew to the uttermost.

Involuntarily we approached the very edge of our stand, to watch as
closely as possible the first plunge of that great raft down into the
boiling breakers, from whose abyss a crew of Titans could not now have
turned it. Quickly it neared the awful leap; at a signal from the
watchful pilot, the foremost half of the crew abandoned their useless
oars; and, running nimbly along the timber, rallied in a group about
their standard, waving their caps, and braving the wild roar of the
water with as wild a cheer. Suddenly the fluttering pennon drooped
against the mast, then rose erect above it; the loud hurrah was lost,
and headlong down they sank.

The heavy mass, loosely bound together, now writhed and bent about like
a net of twine cast upon an angry brook, whilst the concussion produced
by the clashing timbers sounded like a discharge from a battery. I drew
short breath as I looked upon the men emerging from the foam, and again
actively running to quarters to resume the heavy oars.

If the raft goes down unbroken, they guide it so as to preserve the very
strength of the stream, until the diminished pace again demands their
labour; but if any timbers are severed from the parent bed by the leap,
as is frequently the case, the sternmost gang leisurely dart their
pile-headed poles of an almost unwieldy length into the stray logs, and
thus drawing them quickly back again, secure them in their places
preparatory to the next fall lying on their perilous path.

I felt monstrously excited when, roused by the cry of the near
_voyageurs_, I rose for the first time to witness a scene to which I
feel my pen can do but little justice; from the first glance at the
timber-ends emerging past a leafy turn in the up-stream, and bounding
onward with a momentary increase of impetus, until the strong raft
becomes but as a bed of straw upon the torrent. Then there is the
desperate plying of the oars, their hurried abandonment, with the
in-gathering, of the bold crew clinging together with cheers round their
bright flag, until the leap is made, and the assailing waves rise
boiling about and above them.

One of the descending rafts, for we were favoured with several, parted
in nearly two halves within the rapids: luckily no one had been left out
of bounds; for, as the fishermen assured us, the strongest swimmer is
never seen alive after his first plunge into these frightful eddies.

Having abided our time, we purchased a fine shad, which we took to a
near cottage, where the mistress cheerfully set about _boucan_-ing it
for us; that is, roasting it over the fire in the smoke of the wood.
With this, some brown-bread, and a glass of water, we made an excellent
luncheon; then, after taking a considerable circuit, re-entered
Montreal, and crossed at once to the island _par excellence_.

At half-past eight P.M. of the same evening I was put on board the
"British America" steamboat, a fine large-class vessel, having a
heavily laden schooner in tow.

As we swept down before the river-front of the city, I was struck with
the appearance of the steep tin-roofed houses and many little domes
glancing back the moon's rays; when, turning to regard St. Helen's, the
blaze of a port-fire arrested my attention; the flash of the gun
instantly succeeded, whilst, amidst its prolonged echoes, rose the
contending notes of drum and bugle. It was just nine o'clock; in a few
moments all was again calm and still, the last spire of Montreal quickly
retreated in the shades of night, and the low banks of the St. Lawrence
stretched away far and wide before us.

After a couple of hours' walk on deck, where two or three ladies and
gentlemen were promenading with the quick, active step that at once
proclaimed them English, I felt sufficiently wearied by some eighteen
hours actively passed on foot or in saddle, to calculate on a sound
sleep.

About midnight a devil of a row awakened me; I listened, and heard a
rush overhead like a burst of cavalry, the trampling of horses, the
yelling of dogs, together with the loud voices of many men in high
contention. What the mischief can have come to us? thinks I.

A stray waiter, whom I discovered discoursin' a friend in the pantry,
was at last made sensible of my calls, and from this youth I quickly
learned our whereabout.

We were lying at Sorrel, the country-residence of the Governor, Lord
Aylmer; and the noise was occasioned by the shipping of his lordship's
stud for Quebec, whither the family had removed from this summer abode,
to await and receive the commission about to supersede him in his high
office.

Finding that the din was not occasioned by an infall of the aborigines,
but was only a peaceful taking in of freight, I dismissed my waiter to
his friend and pantry, and "addressed me again to sleep."

_Sunday, 7th._--About noon arrived at _Trois Rivières_, a very pretty
little town, which, being Sunday, was thronged with the rural population
of the vicinity attending church.

Numbers of these persons were pacing along the river-bank upon sturdy
little ponies, and in the harbour were many _bateaux_ filling with them,
before re-crossing the St. Lawrence: their dress was invariably neat
and picturesque, and their physiognomy, though somewhat heavy, was
gentle and pleasing. These _bateaux_ were shaded with the branches of
trees, and decorated with wild flowers, and when moving off with their
freight had quite an Arcadian appearance.

From this place to St. Anne's, the north bank of this river might be
sketched for the same side of the Mississippi as viewed from New Orleans
to Baton Rouge; a natural levee runs along at about the same elevation,
on a like dead level; directly behind this bank are scattered similar
poor-looking tenements, badly built, and half painted; and, at a certain
distance in the rear of these, rises a melancholy-looking forest of
half-naked trees, with not a single rise or gap along the hazy line of
the horizon resting upon them. The glowing heat of this calm day also
favoured the illusion, which was certainly in all its points the most
perfect imaginable: it would require very little to persuade a man
landed here on such a day that he was in Louisiana.

The river again becomes interesting about the junction of the Richelieu.
The banks are once more broken and of irregular heights. Numerous
churches, having domes and spires like the _béfrois_ of Normandy, only
that these are roofed over with pure tin, shoot above each wooded knoll;
and the stream whirls and boils amongst reefs of irregular rock, some
hidden, others visible, moving at a great pace for the ticklish
navigation.

At three P.M. the Heights of Abraham hove in sight, and our prospect
grew in interest with every moment. Next rose a forest of tall masts
along the shore; away upon our right was Point Levi, with its soft
wooded brow; and above our heads upon the left glistened tower and town,
with the grim batteries hanging over the precipice.

As we drew closer, the ruins of the Chateau formed an object of striking
interest, and gave added effect to the approach to this most picturesque
capital; an object of interest which I hope will soon be removed by his
Majesty's loyal and liberal parliament for Lower Canada, and a new
edifice erected, in a style becoming to their taste and worthy such a
site.

The valley of Montmorency, with its long straggling suburb, soon opened
to our view; and the river assumed the appearance of a lake encircled
by mountains, and bounded at its eastern extremity by the Isle of
Orleans.

I was perfectly enraptured with air, earth, and water: freshness and
beauty reigned over all; there was not a cloud in the sky or a spot on
the landscape one would have desired blotted out; and, taken as a _coup
d'oeil_, I do not hesitate to say this was by far the finest I ever
beheld.

Sunday though this was, there was much bustle in the harbour. Little
dwarfish steamers were flying across the channel in opposite directions;
long boats, laden with sea-worn emigrants, were rowing from the shore
back to their respective ships.

It was pleasant to look on these poor people coming back from a first
attendance at the altars raised, by their predecessors in exile, amidst
a wilderness now made, by the industry Heaven has blessed, so glorious.

How cheering in their eyes must have been this sunny view of the land of
their adoption! How must their hearts have leaped within them as they
pressed for the first time its shores, and heard once more the sound of
the church-going bell, and kneeled in gratitude before that type of
salvation which they came to bear yet deeper within the bosom of the
desert, themselves the hardy pilgrims of a new crusade! their _hâches
d'armes_, their stout wood-axes; their lances, the goads of the patient
steer; their artillery, the plough and harrow; their advance, the
progress of industrious hardihood; their bloodless victory, a blessing
to the field they win, a glory to the banner under which they strive:
braving peril, toil, and exile for a country to be made holy by their
triumph, and consecrated at once to freedom and to God!

It was impossible to contemplate unmoved this rustic chivalry, this
banding of men of every European tongue for a common purpose, so
pregnant with good for themselves and for their posterity.

Let the healthful tide roll on, here is boundless space for all comers;
and ages must pass before willing toil shall fail to find present
employment, cheered by the prospect of ultimate independence.

About five P.M. we were landed. In company with Captain W----s, U. S. A.
I ascended the mountain; and, as our time was limited, we had no sooner
secured good quarters at the hotel than we sallied forth to survey the
works, which are, I understand, of the strongest and most perfect
description, sufficiently guaranteeing Quebec against all surprisal for
the time to come.

The finest view is that offered from the Signal-tower.

The city, Point Levi, the winding river, with the Isle of Orleans, lay
clearly spread beneath our feet as in a well-designed panorama, with
such light and shadow as the artist is seldom favoured with, except in
imagination.

Coming down from the fort, I was happy enough to encounter Captain
Doyle, driving a right London-appointed tilbury. He had been to the
hotel in search of me, and now, dismissing his boy, installed me in the
vacancy, and set off at once for the field of battle on the Plains of
Abraham.

Our first pull-up was by a little potato-field, memorable as the spot
where the gallant Wolfe fell. A broken column of black marble had just
been erected here by Lord Aylmer: a tribute honourable to the taste of
the gallant soldier living, and which will henceforward worthily mark
the spot where the young victor died.

After viewing over the battle-ground, with the ascent from Wolfe's Cove,
we turned back to the city and drove to the Chateau, or rather to its
ruins. We walked through the blackened hall out upon the still firm
floor of the gallery, or balcony, overlooking at a giddy height the
lower town. From this we strolled through the hanging-garden of the
Chateau, which is laid out on terraces cut from the face of the
precipice, and hedged in by a range of cannon of the largest calibre.

Took coffee with Doyle in a chamber, which, although placed at a
somewhat unfashionable altitude, commanded a prospect worth all the
labour of a threefold flight. Finding it a hopeless task waiting for
night, that is, for darkness, went home and to bed, a little wearied,
but more delighted, leaving directions to be called at five A.M. having
arranged with Captain W----s to ride at that hour to the Falls of
Montmorency.

_Monday, 8th._--In saddle by half past five A.M. with a morning that
made these narrow, dusty streets look both cool and clear. The
market-folk were already in motion from the country, having light carts
filled with the articles they supply to the _bourgeoisie_.

Crossing a long wooden bridge, whose toll was collected by a sturdy old
invalid soldier, we entered, soon after, a perfect French village of
interminable length, closely flanking the highway, and possessing a very
large and well-built church, fronted, after the fashion universal here,
by a couple of spires, with a large dome in the centre, all coated over
with bright tin, and so glittering famously in the morning sun.

A tolerable road brought us in ten miles or so to the object of our
early gallop. Hitching the horses beneath a near shed, we roamed about
looking how best to descend; until discovering a ladder planted against
the face of the precipice, we took to this, and going down it about
seventy feet, were landed upon a table-rock exactly on a level with the
torrent, and at the very point whence it makes its down leap into a bay
of the St. Lawrence, a portion of it being arrested, and turned to the
ignoble use of a wool-carding mill, which abuts on the very edge of the
cataract.

I have no sort of doubt that, had I been brought hither before seeing
Niagara, I should have felt duly impressed by its grandeur, which is
unquestionably of a character sufficiently striking to inspire a much
less sensitive admirer of the sublime in nature; as it was, this fall
only brought fresh to my recollection the scene I had looked upon the
year before, no feature of which can ever be effaced by any other
object.

At this day I can find no adequate language wherein to dress my
impressions of that wonder. Of Montmorency I only know that I felt,
whilst viewing it, as though other doings of Nature might be found every
way fellow to it: that such things, in fact, were existing elsewhere, or
might be.

But Niagara in its greatness makes all else little. It stands,
incomparable and alone, a time-defying monument of creation as first
called from chaos; one feels that the waters of the deluge may have
risen above it and subsided, leaving it unaltered. It is possible to
imagine all other worldly things either changed, or within the scope of
mutation and the power of Time. You feel that with most earthly things
you have a right to speculate, to calculate on their endurance, to
control and to direct them: but never so with old Niagara. Its aspect
awes man into nothing, it mocks at his dreams, and defies alike his
wisdom and his power.

Certain points on this Montmorency road afford, I fancy, the finest view
of Quebec. Two sides of the city are presented, with its close streets,
and bright-roofed buildings, rising irregularly tier over tier, and
crowned by the formidable lines of defence over which the cross of Old
England waves proudly in the breeze. Opposite swells the softer outline
of Point Levi, sprinkled with pretty cottages, and separated from the
mountain by a narrow channel. As a foreground, the smooth bay lies
spread between, and over all bends a sky without a cloud, glowing in the
colour of the early morning sun.

With this scene before us, we rattled back at a merry pace, reaching our
quarters by a little after eight A.M. We found horses here awaiting to
carry us to the Chateau to breakfast, an attention of Captain Doyle's
which, after a hasty toilet, we availed ourselves of.

My steed, who had probably an eye to his own breakfast rather than to
mine, made a bolt for the stable just as we gained the house; I strove
to persuade him to take me to the door by the only means I
possessed--patience, civility, and a stick: but he would not be 'ticed;
I lost my patience, forgot my civility, and broke my stick, yet he
fairly bullied me, till, finding my saddle turning, I left him to go his
own way, and ungraciously ceded the point in dispute.

After breakfast, my American soldier companion being naturally
solicitous to witness guard mounting, I accompanied him on to the
parade, and had the pleasure of seeing the 79th Highlanders come on the
ground, with the band and pipes playing alternately. It was really quite
refreshing to see this fine corps in such order; the men were uncommonly
good-looking fellows, and fairly shook the ground with their measured
tread.

Of all our soldiers no arm attracts the notice and admiration of
strangers so much as the Highland corps; the striking colours of the
costume, its picturesque arrangement, the waving of the gay plaid and
plume, together with the strange wild skirl of the bagpipes, lay hold on
the imagination, and are at the same time so unlike the military array
of any other country, that no comparison is ever suggested as a
drawback.

It was no easy matter to tear oneself away from the hospitalities
tendered from every quarter here; but finding that after this night no
boat was to sail until Wednesday, and having pledged myself to be at
Montreal on that day, I even buckled on the armour of resolution, and,
making a virtue of necessity, broke away in time to join Captain W----s
on board the steamer, at ten o'clock P.M. Within a quarter of an hour
after we left the wharf, making a sweep downwards in order to take a
large brig in tow from her moorings in the stream.

This chance and the correspondent delay, afforded us an opportunity of
viewing the city from various points. The night was lovely, and the deep
shadows of the towering mountain, with each salient angle made bright by
the silver moon, formed a picture altogether enchanting.

The ruins of the Chateau, with the rays of bright light streaming
through its open roof and many windows over the blackened broken walls,
became, however, my chief object of admiration.

I trust the good citizens of Quebec, having been afforded this
opportunity, will erect a pile here worthy the site; a castellated
building would perhaps be the style best adapted to this, and would come
well in with the river line of defence, whose strong curtain runs
parallel with the terrace, from which the windows of the Chateau look
perpendicularly upon the streets two hundred feet below.

At Wolfe's Cove we approached close under the wooded heights, where we
took in tow a second brig; then sheering out, began painfully to ascend
the current with a dead head-breeze, and having these monsters yawing
about on each quarter.

Our Titan steamer groaned, and heaved, and strained, as though but
sulkily submitting to this added charge, and doing the master's work, in
the spirit of Caliban, under the spell of a higher intelligence.

_Tuesday, 9th._--Find that during the night our progress continued
painfully slow; indeed, only that the wind lulled, we could not have
stemmed the rapids; but when above the Richelieu we made better way,
arriving at Trois Rivières about noon, with a fine fair breeze blowing
up the stream.

The brigs were here cast loose to make the best of their way whilst we
took in a supply of wood. Meantime, Captain W----s and I took a stroll
about the town, which in itself is pretty, and agreeably situated. All
this day the breeze continued favourable, and consequently our pace was
tolerable. How long we should have been with a head-wind, it is
impossible to say.

_Wednesday, 10th._--I was this morning on deck by four A.M. and was
well repaid for my early rising. We were some thirty miles distant from
Montreal, as our pilot informed me: the land on either side was low, but
soft, verdant, and well wooded, with the prettiest-looking villages
dotted along from point to point. At times, three or four of these, with
their triple-spired churches, were at once visible as we slowly steered
through groups of islets of every form and size, but all of a colour of
unequalled purity.

I cannot wonder at the rapturous language used in the description of
these places by the sea-wearied discoverers who viewed them for the
first time in the summer season; for even I, with no such spur to
imagination, find it difficult to stick to sober prose when recalling
the luxuriant growth of these isles of the far North. It would appear as
though Nature, aware that the possession of beauty is with them
extremely limited, had resolved, by way of compensation, to render their
short-lived loveliness surpassing.

At last was seen, high towering over all, the rounded top of the fairest
of the hundred isles of the St. Lawrence, St. Helen's; and, shortly
after, the glittering domes of the city of Montreal gave warning that
our up-voyage was drawing to a happy conclusion.

_Thursday, 11th._--This morning took a farewell stroll over St. Helen's,
which, on a surface of a mile in length by half a mile in breadth, has
all the attractions Nature could devise scattered with a most liberal
hand. It is shadowed and scented by a hundred sorts of odorous shrubs
and flowers. The groves are filled with birds of beautiful plumage; the
graceful blue bird, the enamelled hummer, and the cardinal, with his
hood of the brightest scarlet, are for ever on the wing in pursuit of
the shad-fly. The pert woodpecker climbs the trees, and along the shores
sits the contemplative heron, watching the rapids flowing by, which are,
during certain seasons, absolutely alive with fish.

In short, I cannot imagine a more perfect summer abode in such a
climate. The aromatic air wafted into one's window on a morning here,
made it a delight to open it. The chamber I occupied looked out upon the
grassy rampart and over it, affording a sight of the city in its best
aspect, and the noble river dividing us from it. Close opposite to my
window was a winding path, completely shaded, which led from the fort
to the little harbour where the island fleet lies moored; which fleet
consisted at this time of an Indian canoe, the soldiers' large
market-boat, and the officers' cutter. Some one or other of these were
almost constantly on the wing between isle and main; and really it was
worth while, once a day, to take a sniff of the fishy atmosphere of the
hot city, in order fully to appreciate the advantages of the cool pure
air of _la belle île_.

At four P.M. after having taken leave of my island friends, whose
attentions had rendered my stay here so delightful, I set off with my
old comrade W----w, and Mr. E----r, who had decided upon accompanying me
as far on my way as St. John's. We found the La Prairie steamboat quite
crowded with the farmers of the continent, on their way home from the
market of Montreal: amongst these were some French; but the majority was
composed of lowland Scotch and Irish, with a fair proportion of
Highlanders.

During our short passage I passed to and fro, below and above, amongst
these various specimens of my fellow-subjects, but was at last fairly
brought up by the look and gestures of a couple of men engaged in close
argument.

The one was a person well stricken in years, with fine white hair
straying beneath the broad leaf of his decent beaver hat; he had a keen
small eye, well covered by a pair of thick grey eyebrows; with features
much wrinkled, but full of intelligence: he was slightly humpbacked, and
otherwise bent by the weight of years.

His antagonist was a low, square-built fellow, with a set of blunt
features, quick sparkling little eyes, a ruddy complexion, and a broad
low brow, over which was set, with a somewhat jaunty air, a blue bonnet.
Both were evidently Scotch; the younger disputant, by his high shrill
tone and peculiar pronunciation, a true Celt.

I soon discovered "the Glasgow body" was engaged in giving a lecture to
the sturdy mountaineer upon the absolute folly of seeking to uphold
exclusively the Gaelic tongue: the Highlander, who was head-vestryman in
his parish, having, as it came out, lately advertised for a clergyman
who could officiate in that ancient language. It may readily be supposed
that between such disputants the argument was a warm one.

The Glasgow elder, slow, precise, and very energetic withal, insisted
that the land they stood upon was no strangers' land; that they were not
expected, like the Israelites of old whilst in a condition of bondage,
to hold themselves a people apart; that the English tongue and English
laws were lawfully theirs; and that those were the wisest men and the
best subjects who learned the first in order that they might neither be
ignorant nor forgetful of the last.

The hielan' man admitted, frigidly enough I thought, the present
supremacy of English law and language, but insisted that the
congregation upon their settlement absolutely needed a Gaelic pastor to
preach the word, and no other; for, although all of them understood the
Gaelic, full one half knew no word of English!

"More shame for them!" exclaimed the Glasgow man; "what for don't they
learn it? Puir prejudiced bodies that they are!"

"What for no?" retorted quickly the nettled Highlander: "why, because
they just prefer their ain: and I can't say I wonder at it all; for I
know baith, and must aver, Mr. Dalgleish, that my preference is wholly
for ta Gaelic, which is a finer language, and a petter and older
language, and of a petter and an older nation by far."

"Hoot tout!" coolly responded old Glasgow; "Ye're just daft on thae
points, Duncan M'Nab: why, man alive! yer' nae people at hame, much less
here, where you are as the least plash flung from the paddle-wheel below
us to the braid stream on which it drops to mingle with its waters; a
lesson ye may tak profit by. Ye've neither country, nor laws, nor
government that owns yer tongue on the whole face o' God's airth, if
ever ye had either; whilst the laws and language o' England are at this
time universal! ay, sir, universal, or at least mair sae than any one
tongue ever yet was since the Lord made men strangers to their fellows
at the confounding o' Babel."

"Ta Gaelic was spoken before tat day!" sharply bolted out M'Nab, "and
was spoken since tat day by a bigger nation tan England ever was, or
ever will be! Tak tat, now, Mr. Dalgleish!"

"Well now, see, Duncan M'Nab," continued the cooler Lowlander, in a tone
provokingly unmoved; "that, I'm thinking, must be a matter o' doubt,
rather than well-authenticated history; and before I either anger ye by
contradicting it, or wrang my ain sense by allowing you the benefit o
't, I'll just seek counsel o' this gentleman, who evidently has a
feelin' in our argument, although he taks no part in it by words. What
say ye, sir?" he added, directly appealing to me; "shall we allow
M'Nab's folk the credit o' havin' given a language to the world more
universal than the English tongue?"

"I think you may, my good friend," replied I, thus engaged to speak, and
in no way willing to spoil the controversy; "and this without losing any
advantage by such an admission, seeing, that if the Gaelic were once so
general, I don't think it a matter of credit or congratulation to its
people that it is now extinguished, or only kept alive by the patriotic
prejudices of a few clansmen in the Hielans and by the ignorance of my
own countrymen in portions of Ireland."

"Ha!" cries Glasgow; "that's a hit, sir, and one that didna' occur to my
mind! Now, M'Nab, how say ye to this? Why the deevil didna' ye keep yer
ground that time ye had it all yer ain way, and no be lettin' strangers
win it clean frae ye?"

"Ta' Gaelic was ta language o' Wallace and o' Bruce, and of Cyrus, who
came before them," urged the Gael, hotly, "and who will say thae were
easy to beat?"

"Who ever said that a Hielanman was easy to beat?" here cannily put in
Glasgow: "not that I altogether allow Cyrus, or Wallace, or Bruce to ha'
bin Hielanders; though I won't say that they didna' speak Gaelic: but
fac's are ill to argue down, and the real fac' o' this matter is, M'Nab,
that here Lowlander and Hielander are a' alike English, and it is not
our duty alane, but our interest, to foregoe all thae hame prejudices,
that have wrought us harm enough, and lang enough, without importing
them here, to be left as an evil legacy to our children to keep them as
strangers to ane anither."

"Look here, Mr. Dalgleish," demanded M'Nab, "do you admit your belief in
election and free grace?"

At this I fairly bolted off the course; but in a few minutes after,
whilst preparing to land at La Prairie, my old Glasgow-man sidled along
by me, with an inquiry as to my pursuit and my name, in order, he added,
that he might remember our pleasant argument, whispering in my ear as we
separated,

"Hielanmen are aye weel enough in some particulars, sir; but they're
just fairly eat up wi' pride and superstition, and fu' o' prejudices. At
hame or abroad it's aye the like; they're of a race that can only be
improved by amalgamation and time. I wish you a very pleasant passage
hame, sir, and a good evening to you!"

Returning his civility, I was here separated from my elder. In about
half an hour after I was about to quit the hotel, in the extra we had
engaged for St. John's, when my Hielander, whose warm heart I had won by
some honest commendation of his native country, ran up to me to shake
hands, saying with a loud laugh,

"Ta old man was a good man, and a well-educated man; but a Glasgow is
always a Glasgow; sell his web or his waens for ta money, and carein' as
little for either kin or country as does ta cuckoo. God bless you, and
if ever you should see Ben Nevis again, think on Duncan M'Nab that will
see it no more."

Away ran the active Hielander, after his party, who were proceeding by
the shore road, and in a few minutes my companions and myself were
jolting at the rate of three miles and a half an hour over the ruts of
La Prairie.

It is really surprising to observe how these sons of the Celt adhere to
their native tongue, and preserve every early custom that is in any way
practicable.

In the mountains of North Carolina there exists a colony of Sutherland
Highlanders, two-thirds of whom speak no English, and who possess
negroes who only know Gaelic; even within thirty miles of Philadelphia I
stumbled upon a family in the third generation, or rather I ought to
say, found the three generations together. The children tottering before
the doors had, as had their fathers before them, a duck-puddle to wade
in, with a dung-heap "quite convanient" to sun themselves upon in common
with the pigs and fowls, and they were all lisping the Gaelic tongue
with the most unsophisticated ignorance of any other whatever.

On one or two occasions I considered our present journey about to be
concluded by an overturn into the canal, along whose bank we rolled most
critically, as we neared our harbour; we were, however, landed in due
time all safe, and procured a very good supper.

_Friday, 12th._--Left St. John's with a couple of gentlemen in canoe for
Île aux Nois, there to abide the coming of the steam-boat. The heat was
intense, but our canoe-men were a pair of lusty old lads, Canadians, and
they pulled us up stream merrily at the rate of six miles an hour,
keeping close beneath the trees growing out of the lake, here a narrow
channel merely.

We found Fort Lennox garrisoned by a party of the 32nd regiment, under
the command of Major Swinburne, who was resident here with his family.
The fort is regularly and well built, and the defences are in excellent
order, save that the facing of the ditch, being of wood, is tumbling in
at most points, to the great danger of the foundation. As this place is
considered worthy a garrison, it would be as well that this ditch should
be faced with stone, in a way becoming the other defences, all of which
appear to be built in the best manner, and are in good preservation.

At three o'clock _P.M._ the steamer was announced in sight, and we
hastened to the little wharf where the captain always lands to show his
clearance; a matter of form which is strictly observed.

The inhabitants, at least the civilians, were all assembled on the
wharf, for this arrival was the event of the day. The little group was
composed of two or three officers' ladies, with their families. Amongst
these I noticed one pretty black-eyed English girl, who I fancied looked
after the boat as it left the shore, and was whirled alongside the
steamer, with a mournful glance, wherein I read the word home written as
plainly as I ever read it in a book.

"I wish you were returning to your home, my sweet girl," replied I, in
the same language, "and that I might be your escort; you should be well
and honestly guarded, at all events."

In a moment I was for ever sundered from this object of my
commiseration; yet had my eyes only been as expressive as hers, all I
have set down here might have been read therein.

Away we sped along the winding lake, turning from shore to shore, now
visiting one pretty landing, now another; a mode of proceeding that is,
amidst such scenery, perfectly delightful.

_Saturday, 13th._--Breakfasted at Whitehall, and took the middle line to
Albany, traversing a wild sterile country, over bad roads and worse
bridges, until we reached Sandy-hill, where the noble Hudson bursts upon
the view.

From this point to Albany the river is never lost sight of; and a
grateful sight the beautiful stream afforded to a sun-dried,
half-smothered traveller, to turn from the dusty track and contemplate
its cool waters and pleasant groves.

I sincerely pity the heart to which a drive, at such a season, through
this valley of the Hudson, brings no gladness. Talk of the beauties of
the river from New-York to Albany, when, after all, it is here they are
to be found; here where its waters are seen flowing between banks at
times richly wooded, towering high and bold; then sinking suddenly, as
they sweep for miles a continuous line of natural meadows, whose rich
fringe of waving grass drinks for ever of the passing stream.

In many of these places the country puts on a park-like appearance, and
you travel by hill and dale and glance down trim-looking slopes, dotted
with irregular clumps of ornamental trees of the finest foliage and of
all kinds, from the graceful silver ash and the umbrageous butter-nut,
to the tall sombre-looking pine, and the wide-spreading elm.

The river itself is as changeful in its aspect as the lovely country
through which it flows; in places its whole breadth is occupied by a
stony bed over which it leaps along, forming for a mile or so a gentle
uniform rapid. At the next turn it is seen freed from all impediment,
moving majestically and slowly through deep-cut banks, or circling round
some little islet won from the neighbouring plain.

During our journey we crossed the canal which runs near the river
frequently, and the Hudson itself twice, by fine covered bridges.

We also passed through several pretty towns; Schuylersville, a beautiful
romantic site; Mechanicsville, a bustling thriving place, with a
considerable population, and where I noticed a great number of young
girls of an appearance remarkably neat. It was Saturday afternoon,
labour was passed for the week, and the street and neighbourhood
presented an appearance most creditable to the operatives who are here
congregated in a lovely neighbourhood.

By the time we reached Waterford it was dark: here we crossed the
Hudson, near the Cohoos' Falls; and at Troy were ferried over, back
again, coach, horses, a waggon, and a couple of oxen, in a schow, or
flat boat, by torchlight.

From our last landing-place to Albany runs a well Macadamized road of
noble proportions, and on this our wearied horses appeared to gain
fresh courage, for they trotted along nimbly, setting me down at the
door of the Eagle shortly after midnight.

_Sunday, 14th._--Down the Hudson to New York, where I rested for a few
days, intending to embark from this port; but finding the ships of every
line crowded, and likely to be crowded for some time to come, I decided,
in company with an excellent voyaging companion, who had resolved upon
sharing my fortunes, to proceed to Philadelphia, and sail from that
place, in the Algonquin packet-ship of the 20th inst. which promised
equal comforts with fewer candidates; the length of the Delaware making
Philadelphia less popular as a packet-station.



GENERAL IMPRESSIONS

OF THE COUNTRY

AND OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE.


DEPARTURE.


"Nothing is more common than to hear directly opposite accounts of the
same countries; the difference lies not in the reported but the
reporter." This observation is strictly correct as a general
application, but more especially so when directed to the United States
of America, its people, and its institutions, as viewed by Englishmen,
whose prejudices, strong at all times, and governing their opinions in
all places, are more absolutely freed from restraint and self-suspicion
when set loose upon a people directly descended from themselves, and
inheriting and retaining their customs and their language.

Discrepancies are here also occasioned in many cases by circumstances
over which travellers can have no control, and for whose influence they
are no way accountable; hence things are very differently described, not
so much from the reporters having taken opposite views of the same
objects, but because objects themselves are constantly and rapidly
changing their aspects.--Take the following as an instance.

I remember to have read in one of our most distinguished publications a
few years back a laboured review of a book on America, wherein the
writer found occasion to notice railroads; one of this kind being then
in contemplation as an improved medium of communication between New York
and Philadelphia.

The able reviewer--for right able he was--must have been either an
American or one well acquainted with the face of the country, its trade,
the people, their present condition, and future prospects. The
statistics of the States in question were at his finger-ends; he
produced sound evidence in support of each proposition he advanced; and
the argument thus sustained went to prove, beyond all doubt, that the
spirit of speculation was in this, as in many other particulars, leading
the American people to the verge of madness, and their country to
certain bankruptcy. That in leaving their magnificent lakes, their
endless rivers, and the smooth waters of their coast,--the highways
created by Providence for their use, and amply sufficient for their
purposes--to waste their wealth, distract their commercial views, and
agitate their politics in the projection of railroads that could never
be completed, or, if completed even, would not pay, in our time, the
expense of repairs, or endure the severity of the climate; to construct
which the material must be imported from England, and after every severe
winter would require to be renewed, was, in effect, quitting the
substance for the shadow, and, if begun in folly, could not fail to end
in ruin and disappointment.

I never in my life perused any article more philosophical in spirit or
more conclusive in argument; the scheme was clearly shown not only to be
absurd but impracticable, and the projectors proved either to be
presumptuous imitators, or men profligately speculating upon the
ignorant credulity of their fellow-citizens.

I closed the review, in short, admiring the clear judgment and practical
farsightedness of the writer; pitying the Yankees, for whom I cherished
a sneaking kindness, and inwardly hoping that this very clever
exposition of the folly of their seeking to counteract the manifest
designs of Providence, which had so clearly demonstrated their paths,
might produce as full conviction on their minds as it had on mine.

Well, I forgot the article and its subject, and was only reminded of it
by finding myself one fine day whisking along at the rate of twenty
miles an hour over a well-constructed railway, one of a cargo of four
hundred souls. The impossibility had, in fact, been achieved; and, in
addition to the natural roads offered by Sea, Lake, and River, I found
railways twining and locomotives hissing like serpents over the whole
continent from Maine to Mississippi: Binding the cold North to the
ever-flowing streams of Georgia and Alabama, literally, with bonds of
iron, and forming, indeed, the natural roads of a country whose soil and
climate would set at nought all the ingenuity of M'Adam, backed by the
wealth of Croesus and the flint of Derbyshire to boot.

Now, had such a result been prognosticated only a very few years back,
the man whose foresight had led to such a large view of the subject
would have been mouthed at as mad all over the American continent, and
written down knave or ass, or both, in every practical journal of
Europe.

Such great changes constantly agitated, and reduced to practice with a
promptitude of which even England, with her wealth, industry, and
enterprise, has little notion, make discrepancies between the facts and
opinions of rapidly succeeding travellers, for which neither the
veracity nor the judgment of the parties can fairly be impugned.

Action here leaves speculation lagging far behind; the improvement once
conceived is in operation by such time as the opposing theorist has
satisfactorily demonstrated its impracticability; and the dream of
to-day is the reality of to-morrow.

I feel, in fact, a difficulty in describing without seeming hyperbole
the impressions I daily received, and beheld confirmed by facts, of the
extraordinary spirit of movement that appears to impel men and things in
this country; this great hive wherein there be no drones; this field in
which every man finds place for his plough, and where each hand seems
actually employed either "to hold or drive."

For ever wandering about as I was, and visiting, as I frequently did,
the same places at intervals again and again, I had occasion to be much
struck with a state of things of which I was thus afforded constant
evidence: take for instance,

My first journey in Sept. 1833, between New York and Philadelphia, was
by steam-boat and railway, having cars drawn by horses over thirty-five
miles, which thus occupied five hours and a half. In October of the same
year I did the same distance by locomotive in two hours. When first I
visited Boston, the journey was performed in twenty-four hours, by
steamer to Providence, thence to Boston by stage; the same distance now
occupies fifteen hours, a railway having been last spring put in
operation between Providence and Boston.

Again, in 1834, the traveller had but one rough route from Philadelphia
to Pittsburg. You can now go a third of the distance by railroad, and,
getting into a canal-boat, are dragged over the Alleghany mountains,
through a series of locks not to be surpassed for strength or ingenuity
of contrivance.

In 1833, the journey from Augusta, Georgia, to New York was an affair of
eleven or twelve days; it is now performed in three. Steam and railroad
are, in fact, annihilating time and space in this country. In proof of
it, I can safely assert that if a traveller visiting the South-west,
say, from Savannah to New Orleans, will be at the trouble of
recollecting this book in the year 1837, he will find the account of the
difficulties of my journey extremely amusing; since, in all human
probability, he will perform that in five days, which took me, with hard
labour, perseverance, discomfort, not to say, some peril of life or
limb, just eighteen.

It is these revolutions, and such as these, that form the true wonders
of this country; that stimulate curiosity, excite interest, and well
repay the labour of any voyager embued with a grain of intelligence or
observation, to say nothing of philosophy.

It is to these results, their causes, and their immediate and probable
effects, his mind's eye will be irresistibly drawn, not to
spitting-boxes, tobacco, two-pronged forks, or other conventional
_bagatelles_, the particulars of each of which, as a solecism in polite
manners, can be corrected and canvassed by any waiter from the London
Tavern, Ludgate Street, and by every _grisette_ from America Square to
Brompton Terrace, who may choose to display their acquired gentility
"for the nonce;" and it is the absence of a spirit of philosophy
generally in our writers, and this affectation of prating so like
waiting-gentlewomen, that stings Americans, and with some show of
reason, when they see the great labours of their young country with the
efforts of its people passed lightly by, and trifles caught up and
commented upon, whose importance they cannot comprehend, and which they
have neither leisure nor example to alter or attend to.

After much and close observation, I say fearlessly, that, in all
conventional points, good society in the States is equal to the best
provincial circles in England. The absence of a court, together with the
calls of business, necessarily preclude the possibility of any class
acquiring that grace of repose, that perfection of ease, which
cultivation, example, and a conscious knowledge of the world gives to
the _beau-monde_ of Europe; on the other hand, in the absence of this,
you are seldom pestered with the second-hand ladies'-maid airs of your
pretenders to exclusive gentility, so common amongst Europeans.

The great mass of Americans are natural, therefore rarely vulgar; and
if a freshness of spirits, and an entire freedom from suspicion and the
many guards which ill-bred jealousy draws around the objects of its
care, may be viewed, as indeed they ought to be, as proofs of high
feeling and true culture, then are the men of America arrived at a point
of civilization at once creditable to themselves and honourable to their
women, as nothing can be more perfectly unrestrained than the freedom
enjoyed in all good families here. Strangers once introduced find every
house at all times open to them, and the most frequent visits neither
create surprise nor give rise to suspicion.

Hospitality is inculcated and practised, and the people entertain with a
liberality bordering on profuseness: the merit of this is enhanced by
the great trouble the absence of good domestics entails on the mistress
of even the best establishments. Ladies are here invariably their own
housekeepers, yet, nowhere is the stranger more warmly welcomed, and in
no country is more cheerful readiness evinced in preparing for his
entertainment.

The hand of welcome is also extended and sympathy encouraged towards the
persecuted, whether of fortune or despotism. The exile is sure to find
shelter and security here, without encountering suspicion, whether
necessity or choice induced him to abandon his country.

Honoured be the land which offers to the stranger a free participation,
on equal terms, of all it holds dearest! Hallowed be the institutions
which hold out to talent a free field, and where honest ambition knows
no limit save the equal law!

I shall ever love America for the happy home it has proved to the
provident amongst the exiles from Ireland. In almost every part of the
land, they form an important portion of the freemen of the soil. If, on
becoming American, they have not at all times ceased to be Irish in that
full degree the political economist would desire, there are many
allowances to be made for them.

Let it not be considered an unpardonable enormity that the poor Irishman
runs a little riot when suddenly and wholly freed from the heavy clog by
which the exhibition of his opinions has been restrained at home. It is
not surprising that those who have been for life hoodwinked should fail
to see clearly for themselves in all cases; or that, falling upon
interested guides, they are occasionally led astray.

Wayward and wilful I will admit them sometimes to be, and in evil hands
their misdirected energies may for a time become the instruments of
evil. Mistaken in judgment they may often be, for such is the lot of
humanity, but regardless of right and justice they seldom are, and
ungrateful or ungenerous they cannot be. The evidence of their native
spirit of enterprise is found in their daily braving destitution in the
hope of bettering their hard lot. Their hatred of oppression is proved
by their ill-directed, but constant struggles for equal rights; and, if
kind-heartedness and charity cover a multitude of sins, no people on
earth can justly claim a larger stock. In illustration of which I will
present one proof out of the many I possess, because it will at once
serve as an illustration of my assertion, and gratify those who love to
contemplate the bright side of poor humanity.

The following statement was enclosed to me by an excellent Quaker, one
of the partners of the house from whose books the document is extracted,
with a letter which I need not insert here, but will add, that the
statement is incontrovertible.


     "From the 1st of January 1834, to the 1st of May 1835, Abraham
     Bell and Co. of New York have received from the working classes of
     Irish emigrants, that is, from common labourers, farm servants,
     chambermaids, waiters, &c. to remit to their friends and kindred in
     Ireland, the sum of fifty-five thousand dollars, in amount varying
     from five dollars upwards. The average amount of the whole number
     of drafts sent is twenty-eight and a half dollars each."
       New York, May, 19th, 1835.


There is not a part of the country to which I have wandered, where I did
not find that a like gentle recollection of the destitute left at home
prevailed. In every large city is some one or more Irish house, which
becomes the popular medium through which these offerings of the heart
are transmitted to the miserables at home. When it is reflected that the
donors are themselves the poorest of the poor, and that often at the
close of their first summer, they are found transmitting their earnings
to some mother, or aunt, or sister, without providing against or
thinking of the severity of approaching winter, no eulogy can be too
strong.

"Well, but look, David," remonstrated my kind friend H---- in New
Orleans, to a poor fellow who, after three months' hard labour, brought
him forty-five dollars to send home, "let me recommend you to keep back
ten dollars of this to buy yourself a warm coat; we have a cold month
coming, man, and you are ill off for covering."

"It's true for ye, sir," cried Davy, scratching his head, and glancing
down at his ragged garments, "bud it's only for a month you'll be havin'
cowld here, and the poor crature at home has a long winter to get over,
and her as bare as myself, and less able for id. The clothes cost a heap
o' money here, too, I find; and if you plase, sir, in the name o' God,
send all I have home, and I'll keep off the cowld, when it comes, by
workin' the harder."

Instances are constantly occurring of labourers, landing at a good
season, going to work though hardly able from weakness, and at the end
of their first week bringing three or four dollars to be sent home.

I will not multiply instances, as I might do, nor need I offer further
comment. I confess freely that I have a pride in setting this
much-enduring class of my countrymen before the English people, who,
generous themselves, know how to appreciate good in others. At these
times one page of fact is worth a volume of unsupported eulogium. If the
present short statement contributes to promoting a kind feeling towards
a little known, although much abused class, it will have accomplished
the end contemplated, and in doing this, will have served all parties.

_Friday, 19th._--After passing four days with my New York friends, on
this morning, at six A.M. descended from No. 1; and having bade Mr.
Willard a final adieu, quitted the City Hotel, where, during many
comings and goings, I had always lodged, and where I had constantly
experienced the greatest attention.

Reached Philadelphia, in company with a few kind friends, and found that
the Algonquin had that morning dropped down to Newcastle. Made one or
two calls, and early to bed.

_Saturday_, at six A.M. went on board the steamer, and in a couple of
hours after got a sight of our ship, at anchor near Newcastle, where we
arrived about nine A.M.

Whilst attending upon the arrangement of my baggage on the quay here, a
little boy delivered me a parcel. It was directed to me, with the
donor's compliments and good wishes.

On opening it, I found it contained a roll of caricatures, together
with one of the earliest journals ever printed in Pennsylvania, and a
couple of copies of the latest journal started here, being the first
number of a Newcastle journal that very day published.

In an hour after, we embarked; and this attention of a stranger was the
last kind act of the many courtesies which I have received in this
country, which I quit with the feelings of a son of the soil.

After dropping down as far as Delaware city, we anchored for the tide.
As it blew fresh, our pilot determined not to weigh before daylight.

_Sunday 21st._--On coming from between decks found that we were well out
in the bay, a schooner standing for us to take our pilot. I descended to
the cabin to write a note or two, and found myself almost involuntarily
scribbling verses. 'Tis an odd freak of my fancy, that although never
addicted to poetizing, and ordinarily incapable of manufacturing a
couplet that will jingle even, I am rarely agitated by any strong
feeling, without having a sort of desire to rhyme; luckily the delusion
is exceedingly short-lived, and unfrequent in its visitations. The
reader shall, however, have all the benefit of my present attempt, as I
feel bound to treat him, who may have held on with me thus far, with
perfect confidence.



                                ADIEU.

    _Written on board Packet Ship Algonquin, Captain Cheney--Bay of
    Delaware--pilot about to quit the ship--two p.m.--June 21st, 1835._


     Adieu, Columbia! I have mark'd thee well,
       Nor yet for ever do I leave thee now;
     And busy thoughts of thee my bosom swell,
       And thronging recollections load my brow:
     I've pierced, from North to South, thy eternal woods,
       Have dream'd in fair St. Lawrence' sweetest isle;[5]
     Have breasted Mississippi's hundred floods,
       And woo'd, on Alleghany's top, Aurora's smile.

     And now we part! The ship is flying fast,
       Her pathway deck'd with whirling wreaths of foam;
     And all the swelling sails that bend each mast
       Obey the flag, which, fluttering, points to "Home!"
     Home! home! that tender word let me retrace,
       And bid each letter conjure o'er the sea
     Some cherish'd wish, and every well-loved face,
       To banish thought of those from whom I flee.

     Yet shame I not to bear an o'er-full heart,
       Nor blush to turn behind my tearful eyes:
     'Tis from no stranger-land I now depart:
       'Tis to no strangers left I yield these sighs.
     Welcome and home were mine within the land
       Whose sons I leave, whose fading shore I see;
     And cold must be mine eyes, and heart, and hand,
       When, fair Columbia! they turn cold to thee.


At three P.M. our pilot quitted us; by four we had lost sight of the
coast of Jersey, and, with a flowing sheet, were bounding over the
Atlantic. Except a week's bad weather on the Banks of Newfoundland, this
was a most delightful passage. No ship could be better found than the
Algonquin, and no man more solicitous about the comfort of his
passengers than the excellent Captain Cheney.

On July the 14th we made Cape Clear; and on the 16th I once more entered
the Mersey, about the same hour, and on the same day of the month, in
which I had left it two years before; and to make the coincidence more
striking, we passed the Europe, in which I had gone out, so close, as
she quitted the harbour, that our letters for America were tossed on
board.

FOOTNOTE:

[5] St. Helen's.



APPENDIX.


The following extracts from Reports of the War Minister, and of the
Indian Department, can hardly fail to prove interesting, as they
describe correctly the condition of this people, and the care taken for
their future security by the American Government. The Reports are
authentic, and are taken from an excellent work, the National Calendar
for the Year 1835.


REPORT OF THE SECRETARY OF WAR.

SIR, Since my last annual report, no military movement of any
importance, with the exception of the expedition of the regiment of
dragoons, has been rendered necessary.

It is known to you that some of the Western tribes of Indians, roaming
through the extensive prairies west of Arkansas and Missouri,
particularly the Camanches and Kiowas, have, for some years, interrupted
the peace of that quarter, by predatory attacks upon our citizens, and
upon the indigenous and emigrant Indians whom we are under obligations
to protect. Their war parties have annoyed our citizens in their
intercourse with the Mexican States, and have rendered the communication
difficult and hazardous. It became necessary to put a stop to this
state of things, either by amicable representations, or by force. Those
remote tribes have little knowledge of the strength of the United
States, or of their own relative weakness; and it was hoped that the
display of a respectable military force for the first time in their
country, would satisfy them that further hostilities would lead to their
destruction. The dragoons, being peculiarly adapted to this service,
were ordered to penetrate into that region, and to endeavour, by
peaceable remonstrances, to establish permanent tranquillity; and, if
these should fail, to repel any hostile demonstrations which might be
made. Fortunately, the efforts to introduce amicable relations were
successful, and the object of the expedition was obtained, without a
single act of hostility. Colonel Dodge, who led the expedition, and his
whole command, appear to have performed their duties in the most
satisfactory manner; and they encountered with firmness the privations
incident to the harassing service upon which they were ordered. It is to
be regretted that the prevalence of sickness prevented the whole
regiment from joining in this duty, as the same zeal for the public
interest pervaded the whole. That sickness deprived the country of some
valuable lives, and, among others, of Brigadier General Leavenworth.
Impelled by his anxiety to forward the views of the government, he
exposed himself, while yet weak, to the hardships of a border campaign,
and sunk under the malady which these induced. His high personal
character, his services during the late war, and his exemplary official
conduct since, are too well known to you to require from me anything
more than this brief allusion to his worth and fate.

The commission for the adjustment of unsettled relations with the
Indians west of the Mississippi, terminated by the provisions of the act
instituting it, in July last. Important benefits have resulted from the
labours of the commissioners in the adjustment of difficult questions
connected with the Indians of that region, and in the treaty
arrangements which have been entered into by them. The country assigned
for the permanent residence of the eastern Indians has been so
apportioned among them, that little difficulty is anticipated from
conflicting claims, or from doubtful boundaries; and, both in quality
and extent, there can be no doubt but that the region allotted to them
will be amply sufficient for their comfortable subsistence during an
indefinite period of time.

An important council has been held at Fort Gibson, by Colonel Dodge, and
by Major Armstrong, the superintendent of Indian affairs, with the
chiefs of several of the tribes of that quarter, including some of the
wandering bands, whose predatory operations have heretofore kept the
frontier in alarm. At this council, the situation of the Indians was
fully discussed, and amicable relations established. It is to be hoped
that the feelings with which they separated will be permanent, and their
intercourse hereafter uninterrupted.

The united tribe of Pottawatamies, Ottawas, and Chippewas, possessing
the country in the vicinity of Chicago, have conditionally acceded to
the alteration proposed in the boundaries of the tract assigned for them
west of the Mississippi, by the treaty concluded in 1833. Should their
proposition be accepted, an extensive and valuable region will be opened
for settlement, and they will be removed to a district whose climate is
suitable to their habits, and whose other advantages cannot fail to
offer them strong inducements for moral and physical improvement.

An arrangement has been made with the Miamies for the cession of a part
of their reservation in the State of Indiana. The tracts held by them
are far more extensive than they require; and as they appear to be not
yet prepared for removal, this relinquishment, without injuring them,
will relieve the State, in some measure, from the embarrassment caused
by such large reservations as they possess, embracing a most valuable
part of the country, and interrupting the settlements and communication.

Instructions were given, immediately after the last session of Congress,
for purchasing from the Wyandots in Ohio, if they were disposed to sell,
the reservation secured to them in that state, and for their removal to
the west. The commissioner, Governor Lucas, conducted the negotiation
with great fairness and propriety, fully explaining to the Indians their
own position, the wishes of the government, and the course of
circumstances urging their removal. The matter is not yet terminated,
the Indians having requested time for further consideration.

The necessary appropriations will be asked for the removal of the
Seminoles, agreeably to the treaty formed with them; and arrangements
have been made for the emigration of the Creeks, as fast as they are
prepared for a change of residence. There has not yet been sufficient
time to ascertain the result of these measures.

I am not able to submit to you any more favourable views of the
condition of the Cherokees than were embraced in my last annual report.
While every dictate of prudence, and, in fact, of self-preservation,
urges their removal, unhappy councils and internal divisions prevent
the adoption of that course. Where they are, they are declining, and
must decline; while that portion of the tribe which is established in
the west, is realizing the benefits which were expected to result from a
change of position. The system of removal, however, by enrolment, is
going on, and during this season about one thousand persons have passed
to the west.

The treaty concluded the 24th of May last, with the Chickasaws, has
altered the relations in which they were placed with the United States.
The proceeds derivable from a portion of their present possessions have
been assigned to them, and reservations have also been provided for such
as choose to become citizens of the United States. Their future
condition now depends upon their own views and experience, as they have
a right to remain or remove, in conformity with their own judgment. The
means placed at their disposal are fully adequate to their permanent
comfortable establishment, and it is to be sincerely hoped that they
will apply them wisely.

The acts of the last session of Congress, on the subject of Indian
affairs, have introduced important changes into those relations. Many of
the provisions of former laws had become inappropriate or inadequate,
and not suited to the changes which time and circumstances had made. In
the act regulating the intercourse with the various tribes, the
principles of intercommunication with them are laid down, and the
necessary details provided. In that for the re-organization of the
department, the number of officers employed has been much reduced, and
the current expenses diminished.

Any changes which experience may show to be necessary in these acts,
can from time to time be provided, until they shall become fully adapted
to the situation and condition of the Indians, and to the intercourse,
both commercial and political, which ought to exist between them and our
government and citizens. The system of removal has changed essentially
the prospects of the emigrants, and has imposed new obligations upon the
United States. A vast tract of country, containing much more than one
hundred millions of acres, has been set apart for the permanent
residence of these Indians, and already about thirty thousand have been
removed to it. The government is under treaty stipulations to remove
nearly fifty thousand others to the same region, including the Illinois
and Lake Michigan Indians, with whom a conditional arrangement has been
made. This extensive district, embracing a great variety of soil and
climate, has been divided among the several tribes, and definite
boundaries assigned to each. They will there be brought into
juxta-position with one another, and also into contact, and possibly
into collision, with the native tribes of that country; and it seems
highly desirable that some plan should be adopted for the regulation of
the intercourse among these divided communities, and for the exercise of
a general power of supervision over them, so far as these objects can be
effected consistently with the power of Congress, and with the various
treaty stipulations existing with them. It is difficult, indeed, to
conceive how peace can be preserved, and the guaranty of protection held
out to the eastern Indians fulfilled, without some legislative provision
upon this subject.
                                                           LEW. CASS.


CONDITION OF THE ARMY.

_Extract from the Report of the Major-General of the Army._

Since my last annual report, the five companies of the regiment of
dragoons, which remained to be raised, have been recruited; and, after
having been organized at Jefferson barracks, they took up their march to
Fort Gibson, where the head-quarters of the regiment were established,
preparatory to entering the Indian country, in conformity to your
instructions.

In consequence of the lateness of the arrival of these companies at Fort
Gibson, and a variety of unforeseen difficulties in obtaining the proper
arms and equipments for the regiment, the movement to the west was
delayed until the 15th of June.

In the mean time, General Leavenworth, who had been appointed to the
command of the troops on the western frontier, south of the northern
boundary of the State of Missouri, detached one company of that regiment
as an escort to the caravan of traders to Santa Fe, in Mexico. He also
employed detachments of the third and seventh regiments of infantry in
opening roads between the posts on the Arkansas and Red rivers, and in
establishing new posts beyond the settlements of the emigrated Indians,
for the purpose of facilitating the movements of the expedition, and
covering the country occupied by those Indians, in the event of a
failure to secure a friendly intercourse with the wild tribes inhabiting
the country beyond them.

These arrangements having been made, the expedition, consisting of nine
companies, under Colonel Dodge, was put in motion, accompanied by a
deputation from the several tribes of friendly Indians, to act as
guides and interpreters, and to aid in bringing about a general good
understanding between the several nations; and in order that the
friendly intercourse might be further promoted, two Indian girls, the
one a Pawnee, and the other a Kiowa, who had been captured by the
Osages, also accompanied the expedition for the purpose of being
delivered to their friends.

Owing to the sickness which prevailed among the troops, the command, on
reaching the river Washita, about one hundred and eighty miles west of
Fort Gibson, was so much reduced as to render a re-organization of the
companies necessary. Colonel Dodge accordingly, out of the effective
force, formed six companies, each forty-two strong, and, under
instructions from General Leavenworth, continued his march to the Pawnee
village, situated on a branch of the Red river. Here Colonel Dodge held
a council with the Camanches, the Pawnees, (or Toyaslas,) the Kiowas,
and the deputation of Indians which accompanied him, amounting in all to
about two thousand persons. He explained the object of the expedition,
and was instrumental in bringing about a friendly intercourse between
several hostile tribes. He also obtained the surrender of the son of a
Mr. Martin, an American citizen, who had been murdered by the Indians,
and of a black boy captured by them. A more particular account of the
interview between Colonel Dodge and the assembled tribes will be found
in the journal of the expedition, annexed to this report.

After delivering the two Indian girls to their parents, Colonel Dodge,
accompanied by several of the chiefs of the Camanches, Pawnees, and
Kiowas, returned with his command to Fort Gibson, whence the regiment
proceeded to take up the positions previously fixed on. Four companies,
under Colonel Dodge, marched to Fort Leavenworth, on the Missouri; three
companies, under Lieutenant-colonel Kearney, to the Des Moines; and
three, under Major Mason, to a point on the Arkansas, about eighty miles
above Fort Gibson. These companies have arrived at their destinations,
and are engaged in preparing their winter quarters.


INDIAN AFFAIRS.

_Operations under the Indian Department during the year 1834._

Measures have been adopted for the execution of the several treaties
with the Cherokees, Creeks, Seminoles, Appalachicolas, Quapaws, the
united bands of Otoes and Missourias of the river Platte, and the four
confederated bands of Pawnees of the Platte and the Loup Fork, all of
which were ratified at the last session of Congress. Preparatory steps
have also been taken for the removal of the Creeks and Seminoles, and it
is expected that a considerable portion of those tribes will be removed
beyond the Mississippi during the ensuing season, and find a happier
home in the domains set apart for their residence, under the guaranty of
the United States.

In pursuance of instructions from the department, General William
Marshall, Indian agent for the Miamies, opened a negotiation recently
with the chiefs of that tribe, for the purchase of their land in the
State of Indiana. He has succeeded in procuring from them a cession of
two hundred thousand acres, on terms advantageous to themselves and the
United States. It may be considered the precursor to a total cession of
their remaining land in that State, and their consequent emigration to
the western territory; a result desirable in many respects, especially
connected with advantages to a portion of our citizens, and doubly
gratifying from its being compatible with the best interests of the
tribe.

The alteration proposed by a resolution of the Senate at the last
session of Congress, in the boundaries of the land granted by the
Chicago treaty of 1833 to the united nation of Chippewa, Ottawa, and
Pottawatamie Indians, has received their assent under certain
modifications, specified in their agreement of the 1st of October last.

No material alteration has taken place during the past year in the
condition of the Cherokees. The question of emigration finds them still
divided, and a considerable portion appear to be insensible of the
manifest benefits accruing from its adoption. Without tolerable
unanimity, it is impossible to proceed with it advantageously to all
parties interested in the general issue. In the mean time, the division
has engendered much malignancy, and the opposing parties appear to
evince a rancour bordering on hostility. Occasionally their animosity
has broken out into acts of violence, and, in one instance, resulted in
the death of a very meritorious and much regretted individual. On his
return from their National Council at Red Clay, in August last, where
the question of emigration was agitated in a tumultuous and excited
meeting, John Walker, jun. one of their leading men friendly to its
adoption, was waylaid and shot. The necessary orders for the arrest of
the assassins were promptly issued by Governor Carroll, the present
executive of Tennessee. Several persons are now in confinement on a
charge of having taken part in the murder. Should the occasion call for
it, the military will be ordered out for the protection of those who
decide on emigration, and of the emigrating officers of the government
engaged in this hazardous and responsible service.

A negotiation has been commenced by Governor Lucas, of Ohio, with the
band of Wyandots in that State, for a cession of their remaining land,
and their removal to the west of the Mississippi; and recent
communications furnish strong grounds of belief that under his judicious
management it will be eventually brought to a successful close.

The expedition to the far West, under the command of General
Leavenworth, undertaken in compliance with orders from the War
Department, for the objects therein detailed, proceeded on its route
through regions almost unknown, and amid difficulties of the most
perplexing nature. In consequence of the death of that brave and
lamented officer while in the performance of duty, the command devolved
on Colonel Dodge, who returned with the expedition to Fort Gibson,
bringing along a number of the chiefs of the Pawnee and Kioway
Indians,--bold and warlike tribes, who have entertained no very friendly
feelings towards our citizens, between whom and them there had hitherto
been but little intercourse. These tribes being borderers on the newly
occupied Indian territories, it became imperative to repress their
hostile disposition, under the guaranty of the United States to afford
adequate protection to the emigrating Indians.

With the view of establishing pacific relations between these and other
tribes, a general council was held under the auspices of Colonel Dodge
and Major F. W. Armstrong, which resulted in mutual engagements of
peace and friendship, fortified by proper intimations on the part of
those officers, on behalf of their government, of support to the
injured, and punishment to aggressors.

At the general council, impressive speeches were delivered by several
chiefs of the Creek, Cherokee, Osage, and Choctaw tribes. In their
addresses to the warlike chiefs then assembled, they took occasion
substantially to observe, "that their people had opened their ears to
the advice which had been given to them, and adopted the habits of the
white man, and that by so doing they had become peaceful, prosperous,
and happy; that they had relinquished the chase, and cultivated the
earth, and that by becoming agricultural they lived in peace, and in the
enjoyment of abundance; and that the same inestimable benefits would
assuredly await all the tribes who would walk in the same path."

The duties and services of the commissioners west have closed by the
expiration of their commission, according to the provisions of the act
under which they were appointed. Great benefit has resulted to the
various tribes by virtue of their mission. Important treaties were
concluded by them, existing divisions were healed, difficulties that
threatened collision were settled, and a spirit of peace and
conciliation was infused among the Indians through their
instrumentality.

There is little mention to be made of Indian hostilities during the past
year: they have been few, and those not of an aggravated nature. A
steady and onward course is observable among the Indian tribes towards
the grand point of civilization. Their long imputed indomitable spirit
of revenge, and their eager thirst for war, have undergone a sensible
change in the process of meliorating circumstances. The happiest
consequences may be anticipated from extending the means of tuition
among their young people, from the introduction of mechanical arts into
the different tribes, and from the increased attention bestowed on
agricultural pursuits, under the patronage of government, throughout the
territories of emigration; nor can the gratuitous but useful labours of
the missionary, and the inculcation of the pure doctrines of
Christianity, be overlooked in the enumeration of means that are
conducing to the great end so precious in the sight of the
philanthropist, and so dear to the finest sympathies of our nature--the
transformation from the cold and barren confines of savage life to the
sunny and fertile regions of civilization and religion.


INDIAN SCHOOLS.

The annual donation to the Baptist General Convention is 2,000 dol.; to
the American Board of Foreign Missions, 2,200 dol.; to the Roman
Catholic Church, 1,300 dol.; to the Methodist Episcopal Church, 400 dol.
Other donations are made, upon representations entitled to favourable
consideration.

The number of Indian children receiving instruction at the different
schools is eighteen hundred. Exclusively of these, there are one hundred
and fifty-six Indian scholars at the Choctaw academy in Kentucky, the
expense of whose education is defrayed from funds appropriated by the
Indians themselves, under treaty provisions with different tribes for
this particular object. The flourishing condition of this academy
furnishes the best evidence of the sound views and philanthropic motives
of those with whom it originated, and leaves the question of Indian
improvement in letters and morals upon the social basis no longer
doubtful.


_Statement, showing the number of Indian Schools, where established, by
whom, the number of teachers and pupils, and the amount allowed by the
Government._


-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
|  Names of tribes.   |   By whom established.   | No. of  |No. of |Amount  |
|                     |                          |teachers.|pupils.|allowed.|
|---------------------|-----------------------------------------------------|
|Mohegan, Connecticut,|                          |   1     |  22   |  500   |
|[6]Senecas, New York,|Baptist Gen'l Convention, |   4     | 140   |  200   |
|Tuscaroras,   do.    |    do.          do.      |   2     |  71   |        |
|[6]Ottawas, Michigan |    do.          do.      |   3     |  40   |  450   |
|      Territory      |                          |         |       |        |
|Chippewas,    do.    |    do.          do.      |   3     |  48   |        |
|[6]Cherokees, North  |    do.          do.      |   2     |  21   |  600   |
|      Carolina,      |                          |         |       |        |
|Menomonies, Michigan,|Protestant Episcl. Church,|   5     |  66   |  500   |
|Winnebagoes,  do. )  |                          |         |       |        |
|Menomonies,   do. }  |Catholic Church,          |   3     | 150   | 1000   |
|Ottawas,      do. )  |                          |         |       |        |
|Shawanees west of    |Methodist Episcl. Church, |   3     |  27   |        |
|      Mississippi,   |                          |         |       |        |
|Delawares,    do.    |    do.          do.      |   2     |  23   |        |
|Peorias,      do.    |    do.          do.      |   2     |  18   |        |
|Kickapoos,    do.    |    do.          do.      |   2     |  70   |        |
|Cherokees,    do.    |Baptist Gen'l Convention, |   2     |  25   |        |
|[7]Creeks,    do.    |   do.     do.            |   4     |       |        |
|                     |                          |--------------------------|
|                     |                          |  38     | 721   |        |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------


FOOTNOTES:

[6] The Convention also support one district school among the Ottawas
and Cherokees, and three among the Senecas.

[7] Two of these teachers are natives.


_Statement showing the amount and disposition of the funds provided by
treaties for purposes of education._


----------------------------------------------------------------------------
|Tribes.               |Date of treaty.| Amount. |Disposition of the funds.|
|--------------------------------------------------------------------------|
|Miamies,              |Oct. 23, 1826  | 2,000 00|Choctaw Academy.         |
|Pottawatamies,        |Oct. 16, 1826  | 2,000 00|       do.               |
|Do.                   |Sept. 20, 1828 | 1,000 00|       do.               |
|Do.                   |Oct. 27, 1832  | 2,000 00|       do.               |
|Winnebagoes,          |Sept. 15, 1832 | 3,000 00|School, Prairie du Chien.|
|Chippewas,            |Sept. 24, 1819 | 1,000 00|Baptist Gen. Convention. |
|Chippewas,     }      |Aug. 11, 1827  | 1,500 00|Protestant Epis. Church. |
|Menomonies, &c.}      |               |         |                         |
|Menomonies,           |Feb. 8, 1831   |   500 00|       do.               |
|Sacs, Foxes, & others,|July 15, 1830  | 3,000 00|Choctaw Academy.         |
|Kickapoes,            |Oct. 24, 1822  |   500 00|School in the nation.    |
|Shawanees & Delawa's, |Oct. 26, 1832  |   500 00|       do.               |
|Choctaws,             |Sept. 27, 1830 |12,500 00|       do.               |
|Creeks, east,         |Mar. 24, 1832  | 3,000 00|Choctaw Academy.         |
|Cherokees, west,      |May 6, 1828    | 2,000 00|School in the nation.    |
|Floridas,             |Sept. 18, 1823 | 1,000 00|Choctaw Academy.         |
|Creeks,               |Feb. 14, 1833  | 1,000 00|       do.               |
|Quapaws,              |May 13, 1833   | 1,000 00|Not disposed of.         |
|Otoes and Missourias, |Sept. 21, 1833 |   500 00|       do.               |
|Pawnees,              |Oct. 9, 1833   | 1,000 00|       do.               |
|Chickasaws,           |May 24, 1834   | 3,000 00|Choctaw Academy.         |
----------------------------------------------------------------------------


These tables exhibit the number of teachers and pupils at the schools,
of the condition of which reports have been received.

In all of them instruction is imparted in reading, writing, arithmetic,
and geography. At many of them the boys are initiated in branches of the
mechanic arts, and cultivate the soil. At the Tuscarora station, in New
York, tuition is imparted on the plan adopted for infant schools, and
with marked success. The temperance society contains eighty members, the
sabbath school thirty pupils, and fifty are united to the church. The
children at the Mohegan school, in Connecticut, are employed on farms
cultivated by natives: others of the youth of this band enter on board
the ships in the whale fishery: and, as an indication of a spirit of
enterprise and industry, the wish of some to cultivate the
mulberry-tree, with a view to the establishment of a silk manufactory,
may be cited.

The American Board of Foreign Missions propose to print at the Union
station, in the Cherokee country west of the Mississippi, books in the
languages of the Cherokees, Creeks, Choctaws, and Osages; and the Rev.
Mr. M'Coy, under the auspices of the Baptist General Convention, has
issued proposals for publishing a semi-monthly periodical at the
Shawanee mission, three hundred miles west of St. Louis. Several books
have been printed at this press in the languages of the different
tribes. The object of Mr. M'Coy and his associates is to furnish
historical sketches of past, and notices of present occurrences,
including the transactions of the general government and of societies.

The Choctaw academy, in Kentucky, contains one hundred and fifty-six
pupils; this number will be increased by fifteen Chickasaws, as the
chiefs of that tribe have recently requested their education money might
be expended at this institution. The inspectors, in their last report,
represent the academy to be in a highly prosperous condition; the
buildings erected to be upon a plan convenient and economical; the
provision made for the comfort and health of the scholars to be liberal;
and the care taken to promote their moral and intellectual advancement
kind and parental. The buildings and school apparatus are valued at
eight thousand dollars. The cost of winter clothing for each scholar is
estimated at forty-six dollars and twenty-two cents, of the summer
clothing at thirty-one dollars and eighty-six cents. This academy,
conducted judiciously, will, at no distant day, send forth scholars
competent to teach others, and thus accomplish the object of Congress,
indicated by its legislation at the last session.

Upon the recommendation of two members of Congress, aid has been
rendered to Morris B. Pierce, a Seneca, who is now at Thetford academy,
Vermont, fitting himself to enter Dartmouth college, in New Hampshire.

       *       *       *       *       *

_An Act to regulate trade and intercourse with the Indian Tribes, and to
preserve peace on the frontiers._

SEC. 1. _Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America, in Congress assembled_, That all that part of
the United States west of the Mississippi, and not within the States of
Missouri and Louisiana, or the Territory of Arkansas, and also that part
of the United States east of the Mississippi river, and not within any
state to which the Indian title has not been extinguished, for the
purposes of this act, be taken and deemed to be the Indian country.

SEC. 2. _And be it further enacted_, That no person shall be permitted
to trade with any of the Indians (in the Indian country) without a
licence therefor from a superintendent of Indian affairs, or Indian
agent or sub-agent, which licence shall be issued for a term not
exceeding two years for the tribes east of the Mississippi, and not
exceeding three years for the tribes west of that river: and the person
applying for such licence shall give bond in a penal sum not exceeding
five thousand dollars, with one or more sureties, to be approved by the
person issuing the same, conditioned that such person will faithfully
observe all the laws and regulations made for the government of trade
and intercourse with the Indian tribes, and in no respect violate the
same. And the superintendent of the district shall have power to revoke
and cancel the same, whenever the person licensed shall, in his opinion,
have transgressed any of the laws or regulations provided for the
government of trade and intercourse with the Indian tribes, or that it
would be improper to permit him to remain in the Indian country; and no
trade with the said tribes shall be carried on within their boundary,
except at certain suitable and convenient places, to be designated from
time to time by the superintendents, agents, and sub-agents, and to be
inserted in the licence; and it shall be the duty of the persons
granting or revoking such licences, forthwith to report the same to the
Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for his approval or disapproval.

SEC. 3. _And be it further enacted_, That any superintendent or agent
may refuse an application for a licence to trade, if he is satisfied
that the applicant is a person of bad character, or that it would be
improper to permit him to reside in the Indian country, or if a licence
previously granted to such applicant has been revoked, or a forfeiture
of his bond decreed. But an appeal may be had from the agent or the
superintendent, to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs; and the President
of the United States shall be authorized, whenever in his opinion the
public interest may require the same, to prohibit the introduction of
goods, or of any particular article, into the country belonging to any
Indian tribe, and to direct all licences to trade with such tribe to be
revoked, and all applications therefor to be rejected; and no trader to
any other tribe shall, so long as such prohibition may continue, trade
with any Indians of or for the tribe against which such prohibition is
issued.

SEC. 4. _And be it further enacted_, That any person other than an
Indian who shall attempt to reside in the Indian country as a trader, or
to introduce goods, or to trade therein without such licence, shall
forfeit all merchandize offered for sale to the Indians, or found in his
possession, and shall moreover forfeit and pay the sum of five hundred
dollars.

SEC. 5. _And be it further enacted_, That no licence to trade with the
Indians shall be granted to any persons except citizens of the United
States: Provided, That the President shall be authorized to allow the
employment of foreign boatmen and interpreters, under such regulations
as he may prescribe.

SEC. 6. _And be it further enacted_, That if a foreigner shall go into
the Indian country without a passport from the War Department, the
superintendent, agent, or sub-agent of Indian affairs, or from the
officer of the United States commanding the nearest military post on the
frontiers, or shall remain intentionally therein after the expiration of
such passport, he shall forfeit and pay the sum of one thousand dollars;
and such passport shall express the object of such person, the time he
is allowed to remain, and the route he is to travel.

SEC. 7. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person other than an
Indian shall, within the Indian country, purchase or receive of any
Indian, in the way of barter, trade, or pledge, a gun, trap, or other
article commonly used in hunting, any instrument of husbandry or cooking
utensils of the kind commonly obtained by the Indians in their
intercourse with the white people, or any other article of clothing
except skins or furs, he shall forfeit and pay the sum of fifty dollars.

SEC. 8. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person other than an
Indian, shall, within the limits of any tribe with whom the United
States shall have existing treaties, hunt, or trap, or take and destroy,
any peltries or game, except for subsistence, in the Indian country,
such person shall forfeit the sum of five hundred dollars, and forfeit
all the traps, guns, and ammunition in his possession, used or procured
to be used for that purpose, and peltries so taken.

SEC. 9. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person shall drive, or
otherwise convey, any stock of horses, mules, or cattle, to range and
feed on any land belonging to an Indian or Indian tribe without the
consent of such tribe, such person shall forfeit the sum of one dollar
for each animal of such stock.

SEC. 10. _And be it further enacted_, That the superintendent of Indian
affairs, and Indian agents and sub-agents, shall have authority to
remove from the Indian country all persons found therein contrary to
law; and the President of the United States is authorized to direct the
military force to be employed in such removal.

SEC. 11. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person shall make a
settlement on any lands belonging, secured, or granted by treaty with
the United States to any Indian tribe, or shall survey or shall attempt
to survey such lands, or designate any of the boundaries by marking
trees or otherwise, such offender shall forfeit and pay the sum of one
thousand dollars. And it shall, moreover, be lawful for the President
of the United States to take such measures, and to employ such military
force, as he may judge necessary to remove from the lands as aforesaid
any such person as aforesaid.

SEC. 12. _And be it further enacted_, That no purchase, grant, lease, or
other conveyance of lands, or of any title or claim thereto, from an
Indian nation or tribe of Indians, shall be of any validity in law or
equity, unless the same be made by treaty or convention entered into
pursuant to the constitution. And if any person, not employed under the
authority of the United States, shall attempt to negotiate such treaty
or convention, directly or indirectly, to treat with any such nation or
tribe of Indians for the title or purchase of any lands by them held or
claimed, such person shall forfeit and pay one thousand dollars:
_Provided, nevertheless_, That it shall be lawful for the agent or
agents of any state who may be present at any treaty held with Indians
under the authority of the United States, in the presence and with the
approbation of the commissioner or commissioners of the United States
appointed to hold the same, to propose to and adjust with the Indians
the compensation to be made for their claim to lands within such state
which shall be extinguished by treaty.

SEC. 13. _And be it further enacted_, That if any citizen, or other
person residing within the United States or the territory thereof, shall
send any talk, speech, message, or letter to any Indian nation, tribe,
chief, or individual, with an intent to produce a contravention or
infraction of any treaty or other law of the United States, or to
disturb the peace and tranquillity of the United States, he shall
forfeit and pay the sum of two thousand dollars.

SEC. 14. _And be it further enacted_, That if any citizen, or other
person, shall carry or deliver any such talk, message, speech, or
letter, to or from any Indian nation, tribe, chief, or individual, from
or to any person or persons whatsoever residing within the United
States, or from or to any subject, citizen, or agent of any foreign
power or state, knowing the contents thereof, he shall forfeit and pay
the sum of one thousand dollars.

SEC. 15. _And be it further enacted_, That if any citizen or other
person residing or living among the Indians, or elsewhere, within the
territory of the United States, shall carry on a correspondence, by
letter or otherwise, with any foreign nation or power, with an intent to
induce such foreign nation or power to excite any Indian nation, tribe,
chief, or individual to war against the United States, or to the
violation of any existing treaty; or in case any citizen or other person
shall alienate, or attempt to alienate, the confidence of any Indian or
Indians from the government of the United States, he shall forfeit the
sum of one thousand dollars.

SEC. 16. _And be it further enacted_, That where, in the commission, by
a white person, of any crime, offence, or misdemeanor, within the Indian
country, the property of any friendly Indian is taken, injured, or
destroyed, and a conviction is had for such crime, offence, or
misdemeanor, the person so convicted shall be sentenced to pay to such
friendly Indian to whom the property may belong, or whose person may be
injured, a sum equal to twice the just value of the property so taken,
injured, or destroyed. And if such offender shall be unable to pay a sum
at least equal to the just value or amount, whatever such payment shall
fall short of the same shall be paid out of the treasury of the United
States: _Provided_, That no such Indian shall be entitled to any
payment, out of the treasury of the United States, for any such
property, if he, or any of the nation to which he belongs, shall have
sought private revenge, or attempted to obtain satisfaction by any force
or violence: _And provided also_, That if such offender cannot be
apprehended and brought to trial, the amount of such property shall be
paid out of the treasury, as aforesaid.

SEC. 17. _And be it further enacted_, That if any Indian or Indians,
belonging to any tribe in amity with the United States, shall, within
the Indian country, take or destroy the property of any person lawfully
within such country, or shall pass from the Indian country into any
state or territory inhabited by citizens of the United States, and there
take, steal, or destroy any horse, horses, or other property belonging
to any citizen or inhabitant of the United States, such citizen or
inhabitant, his representative, attorney, or agent, may make application
to the proper superintendent, agent, or sub-agent, who, upon being
furnished with the necessary documents and proofs, shall, under the
direction of the President, make application to the nation or tribe to
which said Indian or Indians shall belong, for satisfaction; and if such
nation or tribe shall neglect or refuse to make satisfaction in a
reasonable time, not exceeding twelve months, it shall be the duty of
such superintendent, agent, or sub-agent, to make return of his doings
to the Commissioner of Indian affairs, that such further steps may be
taken as shall be proper, in the opinion of the President, to obtain
satisfaction for the injury; and, in the mean time, in respect to the
property so taken, stolen, or destroyed, the United States guaranty to
the party so injured an eventual indemnification: _Provided_, That if
such injured party, his representative, attorney, or agent, shall, in
any way violate any of the provisions of this act, by seeking or
attempting to obtain private satisfaction or revenge, he shall forfeit
all claim upon the United States for such indemnification: _And provided
also_, That, unless such claim shall be presented within three years
after the commission of the injury, the same shall be barred. And if the
nation or tribe to which such Indian may belong, receive an annuity from
the United States, such claim shall, at the next payment of the annuity,
be deducted therefrom, and paid to the party injured; and if no annuity
is payable to such nation or tribe, then the amount of the claim shall
be paid from the treasury of the United States: _Provided_, That nothing
herein contained shall prevent the legal apprehension and punishment of
any Indians having so offended.

SEC. 18. _And be it further enacted_, That the superintendents, agents,
and sub-agents, within their respective districts, be and are hereby
authorized and empowered to take depositions of witnesses touching any
depredations within the purview of the two preceding sections of this
act, and to administer an oath to the deponents.

SEC. 19. _And be it further enacted_, That it shall be the duty of the
superintendents, agents, and sub-agents to endeavour to procure the
arrest and trial of all Indians accused of committing any crime,
offence, or misdemeanor, and all other persons who may have committed
crimes or offences within any state or territory, and have fled into
the Indian country, either by demanding the same of the chiefs of the
proper tribe, or by such other means as the President may authorize; and
the President may direct the military force of the United States to be
employed in the apprehension of such Indians, and also in preventing or
terminating hostilities between any of the Indian tribes.

SEC. 20. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person shall sell,
exchange, or give, barter, or dispose of any spirituous liquor or wine
to an Indian, (in the Indian country,) such person shall forfeit and pay
the sum of five hundred dollars; and if any person shall introduce, or
attempt to introduce, any spirituous liquor or wine into the Indian
country, except such supplies as shall be necessary for the officers of
the United States and troops of the service, under the direction of the
War Department, such person shall forfeit and pay a sum not exceeding
three hundred dollars; and if any superintendent of Indian affairs,
Indian agent, or sub-agent, or commanding officer of a military post,
has reason to suspect, or is informed, that any white person or Indian
is about to introduce, or has introduced, any spirituous liquor or wine
into the Indian country, in violation of the provisions of this section,
it shall be lawful for such superintendent, Indian agent, or sub-agent,
or military officer, agreeably to such regulations as may be established
by the President of the United States, to cause the boats, stores,
packages, and places of deposite of such person to be searched; and if
any such spirituous liquor or wine is found, the goods, boats, packages,
and peltries of such persons shall be seized and delivered to the proper
officer, and shall be proceeded against by libel in the proper court,
and forfeited, one half to the use of the informer, and the other half
to the use of the United States; and if such person is a trader, his
licence shall be revoked and his bond put in suit. And it shall moreover
be lawful for any person in the service of the United States, or for any
Indian, to take and destroy any ardent spirits or wine found in the
Indian country, excepting military supplies, as mentioned in this
section.

SEC. 21. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person whatever shall,
within the limits of the Indian country, set up or continue any
distillery for manufacturing ardent spirits, he shall forfeit and pay a
penalty of one thousand dollars: and it shall be the duty of the
superintendent of Indian affairs, Indian agent, or sub-agent, within the
limits of whose agency the same shall be set up or continued, forthwith
to destroy and break up the same; and it shall be lawful to employ the
military force of the United States in executing that duty.

SEC. 22. _And be it further enacted_, That in all trials about the right
of property in which an Indian may be a party on one side, and a white
person on the other, the burden of proof shall rest upon the white
person, whenever the Indian shall make out a presumption of title in
himself from the fact of previous possession or ownership.

SEC. 23. _And be it further enacted_, That it shall be lawful for the
military force of the United States to be employed in such manner and
under such regulations as the President may direct, in the apprehension
of every person who shall or may be found in the Indian country in
violation of any of the provisions of this act, and him immediately to
convey from said Indian country, in the nearest convenient and safe
route, to the civil authority of the territory or judicial district in
which said person shall be found, to be proceeded against in due course
of law; and also, in the examination and seizure of stores, packages,
and boats, authorized by the twentieth section of this act, and in
preventing the introduction of persons and property into the Indian
country contrary to law; which persons and property shall be proceeded
against according to law: _Provided_, That no person apprehended by
military force as aforesaid shall be detained longer than five days
after the arrest and before removal. And all officers and soldiers who
may have any such person or persons in custody shall treat them with all
the humanity which the circumstances will possibly permit; and every
officer or soldier who shall be guilty of maltreating any such person
while in custody, shall suffer such punishment as a court martial shall
direct.

SEC. 24. _And be it further enacted_, That, for the sole purpose of
carrying this act into effect, all that part of the Indian country west
of the Mississippi river, that is bounded north by the north line of
lands assigned to the Osage tribe of Indians, produced east to the State
of Missouri; west, by the Mexican possessions; south, by Red river; and
east, by the west line of the Territory of Arkansas and the State of
Missouri, shall be, and hereby is, annexed to the Territory of Arkansas;
and that, for the purpose aforesaid, the residue of the Indian country
west of the said Mississippi river shall be, and hereby is, annexed to
the judicial district of Missouri; and, for the purpose aforesaid, the
several portions of Indian country east of the said Mississippi river
shall be, and are hereby, severally annexed to the territory in which
they are situate.

SEC. 25. _And be it further enacted_, That so much of the laws of the
United States as provides for the punishment of crimes committed within
any place within the sole and exclusive jurisdiction of the United
States, shall be in force in the Indian country: _Provided_, The same
shall not extend to crimes committed by one Indian against the person or
property of another Indian.

SEC. 26. _And be it further enacted_, That if any person who shall be
charged with a violation of any of the provisions or regulations of this
act shall be found within any of the United States, or either of the
territories, such offenders may be there apprehended, and transported to
the territory or judicial district having jurisdiction of the same.

SEC. 27. _And be it further enacted_, That all penalties which shall
accrue under this act shall be sued for and recovered in an action of
debt, in the name of the United States, before any court having
jurisdiction of the same, (in any state or territory in which the
defendant shall be arrested or found,) the one half to the use of the
informer and the other half to the use of the United States, except when
the prosecution shall be first instituted on behalf of the United
States, in which case the whole shall be to their use.

SEC. 28. _And be it further enacted_, That when goods or other property
shall be seized for any violation of this act, it shall be lawful for
the person prosecuting on behalf of the United States to proceed against
such goods or other property, in the manner directed to be observed in
the case of goods, wares, or merchandise brought into the United States
in violation of the revenue laws.

SEC. 29. _And be it further enacted_, That the following acts and parts
of acts shall be, and the same are hereby, repealed, namely: An act to
make provision relative to rations for Indians, and to their visits to
the seat of government,--approved May thirteen, eighteen hundred; an act
to regulate trade and intercourse with the Indian tribes, and to
preserve peace on the frontiers,--approved March thirty, eighteen
hundred and two; an act supplementary to the act passed thirtieth March,
eighteen hundred and two, to regulate trade and intercourse with the
Indian tribes, and to preserve peace on the frontiers,--approved April
twenty-nine, eighteen hundred and sixteen; an act for the punishment of
crimes and offences committed within the Indian boundaries,--approved
March three, eighteen hundred and seventeen; the first and second
sections of the act directing the manner of appointing Indian agents,
and continuing the "Act establishing trading houses with the Indian
tribes,"--approved April sixteen, eighteen hundred and eighteen; an act
fixing the compensation of Indian agents and factors,--approved April
twenty, eighteen hundred and eighteen; an act supplementary to the act
entitled "An act to provide for the prompt settlement of public
accounts,"--approved February twenty-four, eighteen hundred and
nineteen; the eighth section of the act making appropriations to carry
into effect treaties concluded with several Indian tribes therein
mentioned,--approved March three, eighteen hundred and nineteen; the
second section of the act to continue in force for a further time the
act entitled "An act for establishing trading houses with the Indian
tribes, and for other purposes,"--approved March three, eighteen hundred
and nineteen; an act to amend an act entitled "An act to regulate trade
and intercourse with the Indian tribes, and to preserve peace on the
frontiers," approved thirtieth of March, eighteen hundred and
two,--approved May six, eighteen hundred and twenty-two; an act
providing for the appointment of an agent for the Osage Indians west of
the state of Missouri and Territory of Arkansas, and for other
purposes,--approved May eighteen, eighteen hundred and twenty-four; the
third, fourth, and fifth sections of "An act to enable the President to
hold treaties with certain Indian tribes, and for other
purposes,"--approved May twenty-five, eighteen hundred and twenty-four;
the second section of the "Act to aid certain Indians of the Creek
nation in their removal to the west of the Mississippi,"--approved May
twenty, eighteen hundred and twenty-six; and an act to authorize the
appointment of a sub-agent to the Winnebago Indians on Rock
river,--approved February twenty-five, eighteen hundred and thirty-one:
_Provided, however_, That such repeal shall not effect [affect] any
rights acquired, or punishments, penalties, or forfeitures incurred,
under either of the acts or parts of acts, nor impair or affect the
intercourse act of eighteen hundred and two, so far as the same relates
to or concerns Indian tribes residing east of the Mississippi: _And
provided also_, That such repeal shall not be construed to revive any
acts or parts of acts repealed by either of the acts or sections herein
described.

SEC. 30. _And be it further enacted_, That until a Western Territory
shall be established, the two agents for the Western Territory, as
provided in the act for the organization of the Indian Department, this
day approved by the President, shall execute the duties of agents for
such tribes as may be directed by the President of the United States.
And it shall be competent for the President to assign to one of the said
agents, in addition to his proper duties, the duties of superintendent
for such district of country, or for such tribes, as the President may
think fit. And the powers of the superintendent at St. Louis over such
district or tribes as may be assigned to such acting superintendent
shall cease. _Provided_, That no additional compensation shall be
allowed for such services.

                                  _Approved, June 30th, 1834._

       *       *       *       *       *

_An Act to provide for the Organization of the Department of Indian
Affairs._

SEC. 1. _Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America, in Congress assembled_, That the duties of the
Governors of the Territories of Florida and Arkansas, as superintendents
of Indian affairs, shall hereafter cease, and the duties of the Governor
of the Territory of Michigan, as superintendent of Indian affairs, shall
cease from and after the establishment of a new territory embracing the
country west of Lake Michigan, should such a territory be established.
And while the Governor of the said Territory of Michigan continues to
act as superintendent of Indian affairs, he shall receive therefor the
annual sum of one thousand dollars, in full of all allowances,
emoluments, or compensation for services in said capacity.

SEC. 2 _And be it further enacted_, That there shall be a
superintendency of Indian affairs for all the Indian country not within
the bounds of any state or territory west of the Mississippi river, the
superintendent of which shall reside at St. Louis, and shall annually
receive a salary of fifteen hundred dollars.

SEC. 3. _And be it further enacted_, That superintendents of Indian
affairs shall, within their several superintendences, exercise a general
supervision and control over the official conduct and accounts of all
officers and persons employed by the Government in the Indian
Department, under such regulations as shall be established by the
President of the United States; and may suspend such officers and
persons from their office or employments, for reasons forthwith to be
communicated to the Secretary of War.

SEC. 4. _And be it further enacted_, That the following Indian agents
shall be appointed by the President of the United States, by and with
the advice and consent of the Senate, who shall hold their offices for
the term of four years, and who shall give bond, with two or more
securities, in the penal sum of two thousand dollars, for the faithful
execution of the same, and shall receive the annual compensation of
fifteen hundred dollars:

Two agents for the Western Territory; an agent for the Chickasaws; an
agent for the Eastern Cherokees; an agent for the Florida Indians; an
agent for the Indians in the State of Indiana; an agent at Chicago; an
agent at Rock Island; an agent at Prairie du Chien; an agent for
Michilimackinac and the Sault Sainte Marie; an agent for the Saint
Peter's; an agent for the Upper Missouri.

And the following agencies shall be discontinued at the periods herein
mentioned, that is to say:

The Florida agency, from and after the thirty-first day of December
next; the Cherokee agency, from and after the thirty-first day of
December next; the Indiana agency, from and after the thirty-first day
of December eighteen hundred and thirty-six; the Chicago agency, from
and after the thirty-first day of December next; the Rock Island agency,
from and after the thirty-first day of December eighteen hundred and
thirty-six; and all other agencies, not provided for in this act, from
and after the passing thereof: _Provided_, That the limitation of said
agencies shall not be construed to prevent the President of the United
States from discontinuing the same at an earlier period. And the
President shall be and he is hereby authorized, whenever he may judge it
expedient, to discontinue any Indian agency, or to transfer the same,
from the place or tribe designated by law, to such other place or tribe
as the public service may require. And every Indian agent shall reside
and keep his agency within or near the territory of the tribe for which
he may be agent, and at such place as the President may designate, and
shall not depart from the limits of his agency without permission. And
it shall be competent for the President to require any military officer
of the United States to execute the duties of Indian agent.

SEC. 5. _And be it further enacted_, That a competent number of
sub-agents shall be appointed by the President, with an annual salary of
seven hundred and fifty dollars each, to be employed and to reside
wherever the President may direct; and who shall give bonds, with one or
more sureties, in the penal sum of one thousand dollars, for the
faithful execution of the same. But no sub-agent shall be appointed who
shall reside within the limits of any agency where there is an agent
appointed.

SEC. 6. _And be it further enacted_, That nothing herein contained shall
be construed to require the re-appointment of persons now in office
until the expiration of their present term of service; but the
commissions of all Indian agents and sub-agents now in office shall
expire on the fourth day of March next, unless sooner terminated.

SEC. 7. _And be it further enacted_, That the limits of each agency and
sub-agency shall be established by the Secretary of War, either by
tribes or by geographical boundaries. And it shall be the general duty
of Indian agents and sub-agents to manage and superintend the
intercourse with the Indians within their respective agencies, agreeably
to law; to obey all legal instructions given to them by the Secretary of
War, the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, or the Superintendent of Indian
Affairs; and to carry into effect such regulations as may be prescribed
by the President.

SEC. 8. _And be it further enacted_, That the President of the United
States may, from time to time, require additional security, and in
larger amounts, from all persons charged or trusted, under the laws of
the United States, with the disbursement or application of money, goods,
or effects of any kind, on account of the Indian Department.

SEC. 9. _And be it further enacted_, That an interpreter shall be
allowed to each agency, who shall receive an annual salary of three
hundred dollars: _Provided_, That where there are different tribes in
the same agency speaking different languages, one interpreter may be
allowed, at the discretion of the Secretary of War, for each of the said
tribes. Interpreters shall be nominated, by the proper agents, to the
War Department for approval, and may be suspended, by the agent, from
pay and duty, and the circumstances reported to the War Department for
final action; and blacksmiths shall in like manner be employed wherever
required by treaty stipulations; and such blacksmiths shall receive an
annual compensation of four hundred and eighty dollars; and if they
furnish their shop and tools, an additional sum of one hundred and
twenty dollars; and their assistants shall be allowed an annual
compensation of two hundred and forty dollars. And wherever farmers,
mechanics, or teachers are required by treaty stipulations to be
provided, they shall be employed under the direction of the War
Department, and shall receive an annual compensation of not less than
four hundred and eighty dollars, nor more than six hundred dollars. And
in all cases of the appointments of interpreters or other persons
employed for the benefit of the Indians, a preference shall be given to
persons of Indian descent, if such can be found, who are properly
qualified for the execution of the duties. And where any of the tribes
are, in the opinion of the Secretary of War, competent to direct the
employment of their blacksmiths, mechanics, teachers, farmers, or other
persons engaged for them, the direction of such persons may be given to
the proper authority of the tribe.

SEC. 10. _And be it further enacted_, That the compensation prescribed
by this act shall be in full of all emoluments or allowances whatsoever:
_Provided, however_, That, where necessary, a reasonable allowance or
provision may be made for offices and office contingencies: _And
provided also_, That where persons are required, in the performance of
the duties under this act, to travel from one place to another, their
actual expenses, or a reasonable sum in lieu thereof, may be allowed
them: _And provided also_, That no allowance shall be made to any person
for travel or expenses in coming to the seat of Government to settle his
accounts, unless thereto required by the Secretary of War: _And provided
also_, That no person shall hold more than one office at the same time
under this act, nor shall any agent, sub-agent, interpreter, or person
employed under this act, receive his salary while absent from his agency
or employment without leave of the Superintendent or Secretary of War:
_Provided_, such absence shall at no time exceed sixty days.

SEC. 11. _And be it further enacted_, That the payment of all annuities
or other sums stipulated by treaty to be made to any Indian tribe, shall
be made to the chiefs of such tribe, or to such person as said tribe
shall appoint; or if any tribe shall appropriate their annuities to the
purpose of education, or to any other specific use, then to such person
or persons as such tribe shall designate.

SEC. 12. _And be it further enacted_, That it shall be lawful for the
President of the United States, at the request of any Indian tribe to
which any annuity shall be payable in money, to cause the same to be
paid in goods, purchased as provided in the next section of this act.

SEC. 13. _And be it further enacted_, That all merchandise required by
any Indian treaty for the Indians, payable after making of such treaty,
shall be purchased under the direction of the Secretary of War, upon
proposals to be received, to be based on notices previously to be given;
and all merchandise required at the making of any Indian treaty shall be
purchased under the order of the commissioners, by such person as they
shall appoint, or by such person as shall be designated by the President
for that purpose. And all other purchases on account of the Indians, and
all payments to them of money or goods, shall be made by such person as
the President shall designate for that purpose. And the superintendent,
agent, or sub-agent, together with such military officer as the
President may direct, shall be present, and certify to the delivery of
all goods and money required to be paid or delivered to the Indians. And
the duties required, by any section of this act, of military officers,
shall be performed without any other compensation than their actual
travelling expenses; and all persons whatsoever, charged or trusted with
the disbursement or application of money, goods, or effects of any kind,
for the benefit of the Indians, shall settle their accounts annually at
the War Department on the first day of October; and copies of the same
shall be laid, annually, before Congress at the commencement of the
ensuing session, by the proper accounting officers; together with a list
of the names of all persons to whom money, goods, or effects had been
delivered within said year for the benefit of the Indians, specifying
the amount and object for which it was intended, and showing who are
delinquents, if any, in forwarding their accounts according to the
provisions of this act; and, also, a list of the names of all persons
appointed or employed under this act, with the dates of their
appointment or employment, and the salary and pay of each.

SEC. 14. _And be it further enacted_, That no person employed in the
Indian Department shall have any interest or concern in any trade with
the Indians, except for and on account of the United States; and any
person offending herein shall forfeit the sum of five thousand dollars;
and upon satisfactory information of such offence being laid before the
President of the United States, it shall become his duty to remove such
person from the office or situation he may hold.

SEC. 15. _And be it further enacted_, That the President shall be, and
he is hereby, authorized to cause any of the friendly Indians west of
the Mississippi river, and north of the boundary of the Western
Territory, and the region upon Lake Superior and the head of the
Mississippi, to be furnished with useful domestic animals and implements
of husbandry, and with goods, as he shall think proper: _Provided_, That
the whole amount of such presents shall not exceed the sum of five
thousand dollars.

SEC. 16. _And be it further enacted_, That the President be, and he is
hereby, authorized to cause such rations as he shall judge proper, and
as can be spared from the army provisions without injury to the service,
to be issued, under such regulations as he shall think fit to establish,
to Indians who may visit the military posts or agencies of the United
States on the frontiers, or in their respective nations; and a special
account of these issues shall be kept and rendered.

SEC. 17. _And be it further enacted_, That the President of the United
States shall be, and he is hereby, authorized to prescribe such rules
and regulations as he may think fit for carrying into effect the various
provisions of this act, and of any other act relating to Indian affairs,
and for the settlement of the accounts of the Indian Department.

SEC. 18. _And be it further enacted_, That all acts, or parts of acts,
contrary to the provisions of this act, shall be, and the same are
hereby repealed.
                                   _Approved, June 30th, 1834._

       *       *       *       *       *

_Regulations concerning the payment of Indian Annuities._

1. All annuities payable by treaty stipulations to any Indian tribe will
be hereafter paid by a military officer, to be designated for that
purpose, under the provisions of the act passed June 30th, 1834,
entitled "An act to provide for the organization of the Department of
Indian Affairs," except where, from some local cause or other
circumstance, it may become necessary to have the payments otherwise
made; in which event special instructions for that purpose will be given
by the Secretary of War.

2. The officer designated for the above duty will be advised thereof
through the proper military office, but the necessary instructions for
the execution of the duty will be given by the Commissioner of Indian
Affairs.

3. Drafts for the payment of the annuities will be transmitted to such
officer, who will procure the necessary funds thereupon, and transport
them to the place of payment. The annuities will be paid in specie,
except where the Indians are willing to receive bank bills, which, at
the place of payment, are equivalent to gold and silver. If the Indians
fully understand the value of such bank bills, which are equivalent to
gold and silver at the place of payment, and are willing to receive the
same to avoid the expense and risk of transportation, bills, under such
circumstances, may be paid to them: but the officers making and
superintending the payment will take care that the Indians fully
understand the matter, and act according to the dictates of their own
judgment.

4. When it becomes necessary to pay annuities, instructions will be
given by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs to the proper agent or
sub-agent, and also to the officer designated to make the payment. The
agent or sub-agent will fix upon the time and place, and will advise the
officer of the same, and such officer will make his arrangements to have
funds ready at the time and place fixed upon.

5. The proper agent or sub-agent will take care that the Indians receive
the necessary information, in order that they may assemble at the time
and place designated; for that purpose he is authorized to send messages
to the tribe, and the expense of such messages will be defrayed upon his
certificate by the officer designated to make the payment. It is
presumed, however, that the necessary information may be communicated
generally without expense; and in no instance will the expenses for this
object, for any one agency or sub-agency, be allowed to exceed the sum
of one hundred dollars, unless a previous representation of the
necessity thereof be made to the War Department and approved.

6. From the situation and circumstances of the various Indian tribes, a
uniform rule respecting the issuing of provisions during the payment of
annuities cannot be prescribed. Some of the tribes will require no such
assistance, while it must be rendered to others. In the instructions
issued on the subject of the annuities, the Commissioner of Indian
Affairs will designate those agencies or sub-agencies where it will
become necessary to provide assistance during the time of payment. In
all cases, however, where the payment is made in the vicinity of a
military post, the necessary provisions will be issued from the army
stores, upon the requisition of the proper agent or sub-agent, and upon
the order of the commanding officer, and accounted for in the manner
heretofore practised.

7. Where provisions are required for the payment of annuities, at places
where there are no military posts, the agent or sub-agent will form a
contract, to be based upon proposals, giving at least twenty days'
public notice, specifying the quantity of provisions, and the day, and
place, and circumstances of issue. In determining the quantity, the
agent or sub-agent will estimate, from the best means within his power,
the number of Indians that will probably attend; but no contract will be
made for a larger amount than may be previously directed by the
Commissioner of Indian Affairs.

8. The ration to be issued will consist of one pound of fresh beef, if
the same can be had, but if not, then of three-fourths of a pound of
salt meat, and three-fourths of a quart of corn or of corn meal, or of
one pound of wheat flour, to each person, and of four quarts of salt to
every one hundred persons; but no salt will be issued when the Indians
receive salt meat.

Returns, specifying the number of Indians, distinguishing men, women,
and children, and stating the tribe, will be drawn by the agent or
sub-agent on the contractor, and upon these issues will be made. After
the business is completed, these returns will be consolidated into an
abstract, and certified by the agent or sub-agent, and the military
officer, and thereupon payment will be made to the contractor. The
abstracts and contracts will be the vouchers for the settlement of the
accounts.

9. It is believed that, in most cases, three days' provisions will be
found sufficient; viz. one upon the day of arrival, one upon the day of
payment, and one upon the day of departure. Should two days, however, be
found necessary to complete the payment, four days' provisions may be
allowed.

10. Independent of the Indian agent or sub-agent, and of the military
officer making the payment at places where it may be convenient, another
military officer will be directed to be present, and certify to the
payment.

11. Previously to the payments, the agent or sub-agent, and the military
officer or officers, will convene the Indians, and ascertain from them
in what manner they desire the annuity to be paid: whether to the chiefs
of the tribe, to heads of families, or in any other manner. They will
take care that the Indians fully comprehend the subject, and act upon
their own suggestions; and, after getting their views, the payment will
be made in conformity thereto. The decision of the Indians will be
certified upon the receipt rolls by the above officers.

12. Payment will, in all cases, be made to the Indians, and to no other
person; nor will any debt or claim of any kind be allowed or paid,
excepting claims provided for in the 17th section of the act passed the
30th ultimo, and entitled "An act to regulate trade and intercourse
with the Indian tribes, and to preserve peace on the frontier."

13. Where property is taken or destroyed, in the manner described in the
said section, the person interested therein will procure the necessary
documents and proofs substantiating his claim. These documents and
proofs will be submitted to the proper superintendent, agent, or
sub-agent, and at the next period of paying annuities the same will be
laid before the persons superintending such payment. They will inquire
into the circumstances, and interrogate the Indians; and if they are
satisfied the claim is just, they will then make a formal demand upon
the tribe for satisfaction. If, thereupon, such tribe agree to make
satisfaction, the amount shall be taken from the annuity due to such
tribe, and paid to the person entitled thereto. Triplicate receipts will
be taken from the person receiving such payment, expressing the nature
and circumstances thereof; one of which shall be kept by the agent or
sub-agent; one shall be delivered to a chief of the tribe; and the third
shall be transmitted, with the annuity receipts, to the office of Indian
Affairs. The annuity receipt will also express the payment so made: that
is, it will acknowledge, on the part of the Indians, the receipt of the
whole annuity due to them; specifying that such part was due to them,
and such part to the person named, on account of the injury before
mentioned.

14. If the Indians refuse to allow such claim, the agent, sub-agent, and
military officers attending the payment, will, after making the
inquiries aforesaid, state all the circumstances which may become known
to them, and certify the same, together with their opinion, with the
documents and proofs, to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs for
ultimate decision. And when it shall be decided that the claimant is
entitled to redress, special instructions will be issued to the proper
agent or sub-agent; and, at the next period of paying the annuity, the
amount will be deducted therefrom and paid to the proper person. And the
Indians will be informed that such is the decision of the President upon
the case.

15. Payments of all annuities will be made in public, and in the
presence of whatever persons may choose to attend; and triplicate
receipt rolls will be prepared, and will be signed by the proper chiefs
of the tribe. These receipt rolls will be witnessed by two or more
respectable persons who may attend the payment, and will be duly
certified by the persons making and superintending the same; two of
these rolls will be forwarded for settlement.

16. The agent or sub-agent will reduce to writing the substance of all
the speeches made by the Indians who may be present, and transmit fair
copies of the same to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. These speeches
will be certified by the military officers.

17. The abovementioned law provides that no allowance will be made to
any military officer for his services, except for his actual travelling
expenses. The expenses of transporting the annuity, including a
reasonable compensation to a confidential person to aid in the
transportation where the amount is large, will be paid upon the
production of proper vouchers, and the certificate of the officer making
the expenditure. Where, from exposed situations, or from the magnitude
of the sum, it may become necessary to provide for the greater security
of the funds, instructions will be issued from the Adjutant-general's
Office to the respective commanding officers to furnish such a guard as
may be required.

It is intended to designate the officers at each station, doing the duty
of quartermaster or commissary, to disburse the funds herein referred
to: and, as a general rule, the commanding officer of the post will be
appointed to aid in superintending the payment. Necessary exceptions
from these rules, when they occur, will be provided for.

18. It will be the duty of the agent or sub-agent, and military officers
attending these payments, to explain fully to the Indians the provisions
of the 16th and 17th sections of the abovementioned act, which prescribe
the mode of redress, as well for white persons as Indians, when injuries
are committed by one upon the other. And the Indians will, at such
times, be enjoined to restrain their own people from committing
injuries, not only as the offender is liable to punishment, but because
the amount will be deducted from the annuity due to the tribe; and they
will also be informed that the law makes adequate provision for their
compensation when they are injured by citizens of the United States; but
if they endeavour to procure redress by violent means, they become not
only liable to punishment, but forfeit all their claims to compensation.

19. The twelfth section of the above-named act having provided that,
when any Indian tribe requests it, the annuity due to such tribe may be
paid in goods, it will be the duty of the agent or sub-agent, while
attending any annuity payment, to communicate this information to the
Indians, and to inquire of them whether they desire their next annuity
to be paid in money or in goods. Their answer will be signed by the
chiefs, certified by the agent or sub-agent, and transmitted to the
Commissioner of Indian Affairs; and the Indians will be informed that
the next annuity will be paid in the mode pointed out by them, and
arrangements will accordingly be made therefor.

20. Where an annuity is payable in goods, either by law, by treaty, or
at the request of the Indians, such goods will be purchased by contract,
to be based upon proposals previously issued. Such proposals will be
issued under the direction of the Secretary of War, and by a person to
be designated by him, and will give at least thirty days' previous
notice. Such notice will specify the amount required, the time and place
of delivery, and will describe, as minutely as practicable, the kinds
and quality of the various articles required. In determining the kind
and quality of the articles, regard must be had to the habits and tastes
of the tribe for whom such articles are designed. Of this, the proper
superintendent, agent, or sub-agent, must judge, unless the Indians
themselves shall decide the matter. With this view, the subject will be
explained to them at every annuity payment, and, if they see fit, the
various articles, in the proportions to be indicated by them, will be
purchased accordingly for the next payment. The mode of determining the
quantity will be as follows: if, for instance, the annuity due to the
tribe be ten thousand dollars, the proposals will state that such a
portion of that amount, say two thousand dollars, will be for
blankets--such a portion, say two thousand dollars, for strouds--such a
portion, say one thousand dollars, for calicoes--such a portion, say
five hundred dollars, for powder--such a portion, say five hundred
dollars, for tobacco--and so on; designating the proportional part which
shall be assigned to each particular object. The goods will be
transported to the place of delivery at the sole expense of the
contractor, and kept there at his risk until delivered by the proper
officers to the Indians. In all cases, patterns of blankets, strouds,
and such other articles as cannot be described with sufficient
precision, will be deposited at some convenient place for inspection,
and the articles to be furnished will be in conformity therewith. If
they are not in such conformity, they will be liable to the proceeding
subsequently described herein.

21. The agent or sub-agent, and military officers attending the payment,
will particularly examine all the articles, and will take care that they
are of the proper quality, so that full justice shall be done to the
Indians. In case the goods are not upon the spot, it shall be referred
to them whether they will receive the money, or wait till the goods can
be procured, either at that or the succeeding season. If they choose to
receive the money, it shall be immediately procured, and paid to them on
the principle before described. If they prefer the goods, such goods
shall be procured by a new contract, the same season if practicable; but
if there is not time then, it shall be done at the next season. But if
the goods are ready for delivery, and are found defective in quality,
then the Indians shall also be called upon to decide whether they will
receive such articles as are found defective, or whether they wish the
payment to be made as is provided in this article. If they prefer the
latter, the proceedings above described will take place; but if they
agree to accept the defective articles at such a price as the agent or
sub-agent and military officer may fix, then such persons will
ascertain the difference in value between the articles so delivered, and
those required to be delivered, and shall deduct double the amount
thereof from the sum to be paid to the contractor, and pay the same to
the Indians. But if the agent or sub-agent and military officer are
satisfied that the quality of the articles is such that it would not be
proper for the Indians, under any circumstances, to receive them, then
they will explain the matter without referring the question to the
Indians, and will proceed in other respects as before described.

22. Forms of notices for proposals for goods, and for contracts for the
same, will be prepared and transmitted by the Commissioner of Indian
Affairs. Every contractor will be required to give bond in twice the
amount to be furnished, with at least three sufficient securities, whose
solvency and respectability shall be known to the officer making the
contract, or to respectable persons known to him.

23. Goods for the Indians will be delivered in the same manner as is
provided in the delivery of specie. They will be divided into separate
shares, or be handed over in bulk, as the Indians may choose. The
contracts will be transmitted to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs,
with the receipt rolls of the Indians as vouchers for the settlement of
the accounts. No portion of the money will be paid until after the goods
are actually received by the Indians.

24. In order to preserve the proper authority of the agent or sub-agent
with the Indians, the agent or sub-agent will be the organ of
communication at all annuity payments.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Officers employed in the Indian Department, under the Act for the
Organization of the Indian Department,--approved June 30th, 1834._


                    _Superintendent._

WILLIAM CLARK, St. Louis, compensation 1500 dollars per annum.

J. J. Ruland, Clerk, St. Louis, 1000 dollars per ann.


_Agents, at a compensation of 1500 dollars per annum._

William Marshall, _Indiana_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country within the
limits of that State.

Benjamin Reynolds, _Chickasaws_.

This agency includes that tribe.

Lawrence Talliaferro, _St. Peter's_.

This agency includes all the country west of the agency of
Michilimackinac and Sault Ste. Marie, and north of the Green Bay and
Prairie du Chien agencies, comprehending the various families of the
Sioux tribe upon the waters of the Mississippi and its tributary
streams, and upon the waters of Red river.

Jos. M. Street, _Prairie du Chien_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country west of the
Green Bay agency, south of the agencies of Michilimackinac and St.
Peter's, extending west as far as the Winnebago country extends, and
comprehending within its limits the Sac and Fox Indians and their
country.

R. W. Cummins, _Northern Agency of Western Territory_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country within the
superintendency of St. Louis, south of the Upper Missouri agency,
excepting therefrom the Shawanees, Ottawas, Peorias and Kaskaskias, and
Piankeshaws and Weas, who will constitute a separate sub-agency.

John Dougherty, _Upper Missouri_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country west of the
State of Missouri, north of the northern agency of the Western
Territory, and extending west and north, so as to include the Otoes,
Pawnees, Omahas, and Poncas.

George Boyd, _Green Bay_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country north of the
Chicago agency, west and south of the agency of Michilimackinac and the
Sault Ste. Marie, and extending west to a line running due north and
south, through the portage of the Fox and Ouisconsin rivers.

H. R. Schoolcraft, _Michilimackinac and Sault Ste. Marie_.

This agency includes all the Indians and Indian country on the peninsula
of Michigan, from the mouth of Thunder Bay river, round the shores of
the lakes, to the White river of Lake Michigan, and the islands of Lake
Huron, and the peninsula between Lake Superior, Lake Michigan, and Lake
Huron, as far west as the Monistic river, and all the country upon Lake
Superior, and all the region possessed by the Chippewa Indians,
comprehending the Upper Mississippi.

F. W. Armstrong, _Southern Agency of Western Territory_, and acting
Superintendent.

This agency includes the Choctaws and their country.

       *       *       *       *       *

_Sub-agents, at a compensation of 750 dollars per annum._


     H. Conner,             Michigan.
     Lt.-Col. E. Cutler,    Fort Winnebago.
     James Jackson,         Maumee.
     J. L. Bean,            Sioux.
     J. F. A. Sanford,      Mandan.
     A. S. Hughes,          Ioway.
     M. G. Clark,           Ottaway.
     L. Tarrant,            Creeks, East.
     George Varhon,         Cherokees, West.
     R.A. M'Cabe,           Creeks, West.
     P. L. Chouteau,        Osage.
     J. M'Elvain,           Ohio Indians, Sandusky.
     James Stryker,         Buffalo, N. Y.


_Interpreters, at a compensation of 300 dollars per annum._


     R. Grignon,                Green Bay.
     Antoine Le Clair,          Rock Island.
     Charles Maubrain,          Missouri.
     James Rankin,              Sandusky.
     George Johnson,            Michilimackinac.
     Nathan Strong,             Buffalo.
     Antoine Dunord,            Detroit.
     James Baron,               Logansport.
     Michael St. Cyr,           Fort Winnebago.
     Amable Grignon,            Prairie du Chien.
     Duncan Campbell,           St. Peter's.
     Jacques Mettez,            St. Louis.
     Joseph James,              Kanzas.
     James Conner,              Shawanee.
     Peter Cudjoe.              Kickapoo.
     Henry Clay,                Ottaway.
     B. Mongradier,             Osage.
     Jackson Kemp,              Chickasaws.
     Paddy Carr,                Creeks, East,
     (not reported)               do.   West,
     (not reported)             Cherokees, West.
     R. M. Jones,               Choctaws.
     Jeffrey Dorney,            Ioways.
     Zephier Rencouter,         Sioux.
     Toussant Charbonneau,      Mandan.
     (not reported)             Quapaws.
     (not reported)             Caddors.


THE END


LONDON:
PRINTED BY SAMUEL BENTLEY,
Dorset Street, Fleet Street.





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