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Title: Reminiscences of Travel in Australia, America, and Egypt
Author: Tangye, Richard
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Reminiscences of Travel in Australia, America, and Egypt" ***

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AUSTRALIA, AMERICA, AND EGYPT***


                 [Picture: Frontispiece. Richard Tangye]



                              REMINISCENCES
                                    OF
                                  TRAVEL
                                    IN
                      AUSTRALIA, AMERICA, AND EGYPT.


                           [Picture: Vignette]

                                    BY
                             RICHARD TANGYE.

                 _WITH ILLUSTRATIONS BY E. C. MOUNTFORT_.

                                 London:
               SAMPSON LOW, MARSTON, SEARLE, AND RIVINGTON.
                   CROWN BUILDINGS, 188, FLEET STREET.

                                  1883.

                         (_All rights reserved_.)

                                * * * * *

                                PRINTED BY

                      WRIGHT, DAIN, PEYTON, AND CO.,

                     AT THE HERALD PRESS, BIRMINGHAM.

                                * * * * *

Having made several voyages to Australia, I have often been asked how I
managed to relieve the monotony of so long a period on the water.  I have
never felt this monotony, simply because on each occasion I have set
myself something to do.

In Mr. Trevelyan’s “Life of Lord Macaulay” it is stated that when
returning from India, that statesman set himself the task of mastering
the German language, and accomplished it during the voyage.  I did not
attempt anything so ambitious, but during my last voyage I occupied the
time in writing the following pages; and as they were written under many
difficulties, I feel I may confidently rely upon the indulgence of those
who may do me the honour of reading them.

                                                                     R. T.

_Gilbertstone_, _1883_.



CONTENTS.


                  [Picture: The Rabbit and the Thistle]

                                                                 PAGE.
CHAPTER I.—_At Sea_:—Early Troubles—Cabin’d, Cribb’d,                1
Confin’d—Travelling Companions—“Ordered Abroad by the
Doctor”—“In the Bay o’ Biscay O”—Ship Stewards—Racing
under Difficulties—A Selfish Amusement—Musical
Discords—The Ship’s Newspaper—Our Ship goes too Fast—Why
Ship Captains are Tories—Ixion goes Mad—Burial at Sea—The
Parson “quite at Sea”—A Congregation Guaranteed—Look Out
for Sharks!—“Let the Soup pass, Sir”—The “Scarlet Lady.”
CHAPTER II.—_At Sea_:—“Working off the Dead Horse”—“Poor            21
Old Man!”—“May your Shadow never Grow Less!”—The “Blatant
Beast”—The “Generous” Gambler—A Fiery Celt—The “Classic”
Dolphin—“Get your Letters Ready”—“A Man of Peace
now”—Mixing his Degrees—Good enough for the
Colonies!—“Now Fridolin was a Pious Youth”—A Bootless
Errand—Cross Signals—Tristan d’Acunha—A Parson
Wanted—“The Rolling Forties”—A Hot January Morning.
CHAPTER III.—_In Victoria_:—The Black Death in                      40
Melbourne—Melbourne—Education—A Caustic Smile—“All Work
and no Play”—“A New Way to Pay Old Debts”—“Happy Land” in
Victoria—“Hush! prohibited”—An Opening for
“Gentlemen”—“Hallelujah Claim”—The Black Spur—A
“Soafler”—Comforting the Widow—Hard
Fare—Pioneering—Lovely Marysville—The Five Deadly
Poisons—Back to Melbourne.
CHAPTER IV.—_In Tasmania_:—Cologn–ial Smells—Launceston—A           60
Tonsorial Palace—Harvest in February—The Land of
Snakes—Der Dichter spricht—“The Dangers of the
Seas”—“Sweet Vale of Avoca”—A Charming Village—Where’s
Falmouth?—A Lonely Burying-place—A Narrow
Escape—Snakes!—“Scotched, but not Killed”—“Acres many,
People few”—The Rabbit and the Thistle—Breaking the
Pledge—Hobart the Beautiful—Jericho to Jerusalem via
Bagdad—Farewell, Tasmania.
CHAPTER V.—_In New South Wales_:—Off to Sydney—“What d’ye           80
think of our Harbour?”—A “Southerly Buster”—Oysters on
Trees—A rather particular Couple—Mount Victoria—A
Tremendous Leap—A wicked Parrot—“Bail up”—The Laughing
Jackass—Let Sleeping Bull-dogs Lie—An Election in
Sydney—Beer and Bible—Through Wagga-Wagga—In the
Bush—Track-making—Sighing for Old England—“Tommy”—Albury
and Wodonga, a contrast—The Bush-rangers.
CHAPTER VI.—_In Australia_:—Victoria, Protection—The Dog           101
subsisting on its own Tail—Cabby over-rides the
Tramway—His Profit was not “quite enough”—Protection with
a Vengeance—“Quite right to Cheat the Government”—Free
Trade, New South Wales—A Genuine “Native Industry”—How
Population is attracted—A Prosperous Colony—Demand for
Agricultural Labourers—“Young Australia.”
CHAPTER VII.—_On the Pacific_:—Homeward Bound—Ten Months’          113
Drought—Auckland—Fiji—Kandavu Harbour—A Fearful
Voice—Sharks and Dark Skins—Dropping a Day—A Colonial
Doctor—Man Overboard—Honolulu—A Square Meal—Dressmaking
in Honolulu—A “Brownie”—“Yes, for a Dollar”—A Plague of
Centipedes—A Bilious “Down-Easter”—Jefferson Brick,
Junior—“Mister”—“A Personal Favour!”—Through “The Golden
Gate”—Earning a Cent anyway.
CHAPTER VIII.—_In America_:—San Francisco—The Palace               135
Hotel—Chinese Washermen—The National Habit—Flats and
Sharps—Qualifications for a State Governor—John Chinaman
in California—The Missing Link—Little Min-ne, a Chinese
Bride—Am claimed as a Chinaman—Pacific Sea-Lions—The last
of “Mister”—Across America—A Magnificent Country—The
Noble Red Man—A Long Arm and Quick Eye—John Bright—A
Tremendous Crash—The Trapper’s Story—How Taurus “Meets
the Train”—The Alkali Plains—Salt Lake City—“I guess I’ll
take your Gold”—Rock Groups—“No, Sah!” said Sambo.
CHAPTER IX.—_In America_:—“Eat and be                              160
satisfied”—Chicago—Niagara—Ruthless Desecration—“He must
raise his Salary”—The “American Language”—The Hudson—The
Celestial Harmonies—A Dealer in Justice—“Rich, but
Honest”—“Dear” America—Baggage
Arrangements—Philadelphia—The Centennial Exhibition—An
Argument for Protection—Artisans’ Wages and
Holidays—Protection doomed—Cadgers—Freedom, for Tongue
and Foot—Something hot!
CHAPTER X.—_In Egypt_:—Suez—Hassan—Donkeys for Nine—The            181
Languishing Nobleman—Backsheesh—Painting the Lily—Forced
Labour, a painful Sight—Agriculture _à la_ Adam—School
Interrupted—In the Bazaars—The Jewellers—A Bridal
Party—Sultan Hassan—Familiar Devils—Up the Great
Pyramid—The Heaven-sent Stick—A Wash and a Shave—To
Sakkara—A Great City—At Sakkara—Tomb of the Sacred
Bulls—The Tomb of a High Priest—A Graphic Biograph—The
Eternal Backsheesh—A Camelcade.
CHAPTER XI.—_In Egypt_:—Pious Orgies—Howlers and                   209
Dancers—Miss Whateley’s Schools—“She only steals the Eggs
now!”—In Shubra Avenue—A Useful Animal—A Morning
Ride—Sultan Selim—“Sir, I am a Christian”—A Holy Fakir—A
Statue four thousand years old—Irrigation—Venerable
Orphans—Home to Vote.
CHAPTER XII.—_In Egypt_;—Port                                      226
Said—Hawkers—Bohemiennes—Marines—The last Unmarried
Lady—The Harbour—A discerning young Arab—The Red Ribbon
Army—“Once a Member, always a Member”—The Spider—“One
must be civ-il!”—Our Blue Jackets.
CHAPTER XIII.—_The Suez Canal_:—Arabi in Exile—A ’cute             238
Governor—The French outwitted—“Thomas Cook and Son”—A
Black-Guard—Tel-el-Kebir—The Land of Goshen—The Suez
Canal—Lord Palmerston—Immense Traffic—Lake
Timsah—Predictions—Red Tape—Absurd Restrictions—Lesseps’
Position—A Suggestion—The Dual Control—Arabi Bey—Mutinous
Conduct—Irregular Court-Martial—How Arabi recruited his
Army—“L’etat c’est moi.”
CHAPTER XIV.—_Alexandria_:—Ras-el-Tin—The Forts—A                  260
Courageous Merchant—Alexandria in Ruins—Alexandria not
Bombarded—Anglo-Indians—Brindisi—Quarantine.
INDEX.                                                             269



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

                                                            PAGE
PORTRAIT                                            Frontispiece
VIGNETTE                                                   Title
RABBIT AND THISTLE                                           vii
TERRA FIRMA                                                    1
TENERIFFE                                                      7
THE SPORTS                                                     8
THE CAPTAIN                                                   11
ASCENSION                                                     17
CROSSING THE LINE.  WHY, DON’T YOU SEE IT?                    19
THE BABY HIPPOPOTAMUS AT PLAY                                 21
BURYING THE DEAD HORSE                                        23
THE CLASSIC DOLPHIN                                           28
A COLONIAL PARSON                                             31
IN THE TROPICS                                                40
GOLD MINE                                                     49
A BIG TREE                                                    52
ON THE BLACK SPUR                                             56
THE LYRE BIRD                                                 59
THE DOCTOR CONTEMPLATES—A POEM                                64
AVOCA                                                         67
ST. MARY’S                                                    68
FALMOUTH HOTEL                                                69
BURIAL PLACE                                                  70
SUMMIT OF MOUNT WELLINGTON                                    76
VIEW IN HOBART GARDENS                                        77
OUR WAITER                                                    79
SYDNEY HARBOUR                                                80
COTTAGE AT MOUNT VICTORIA                                     86
WEATHERBOARD FALLS                                            87
DESCENT TO HARTLEY VALE                                       88
THE LAUGHING JACKASS                                          90
THE AUTHOR SKETCHING                                          91
A BULLOCK-TEAM                                                94
A BUSH HUT                                                    95
AN UP-COUNTRY TOWN                                            98
THE PLATYPUS                                                 112
A FIJIAN                                                     117
THE KING’S SISTER                                            127
THE CHINAMAN                                                 142
LITTLE MIN-NE                                                143
SEAL ROCKS, SAN FRANCISCO                                    145
THE LAST OF “MISTER”                                         146
THE EUCALYPTUS                                               148
SALT LAKE                                                    155
MONUMENT ROCK                                                158
THE DEVIL’S SLIDE                                            159
UNDER THE FALLS, NIAGARA                                     163
THE PALLISADES, HUDSON RIVER                                 166
JOHN SCALES, JUSTICE OF THE PEACE                            168
A DRAGOMAN                                                   182
A DONKEY BOY                                                 184
THE “ORIENT”                                                 186
THE SCHOOLMASTER “ABROAD”                                    189
A “PEEP”                                                     190
“BERY CHEAP, SAH!”                                           191
THE MOSQUE OF SULTAN HASSAN                                  193
ASCENDING THE GREAT PYRAMID                                  197
VIEW ON THE NILE                                             198
THE SPHINX                                                   199
A WASH AND A SHAVE                                           201
THE SERAPEUM, SAKKARA                                        204
BAS-RELIEF, TOMB OF TIH                                      206
A CAMELCADE                                                  208
PRAYERS IN THE DESERT                                        209
A RUNNER, OR SAIS                                            212
IN SHUBRA AVENUE                                             214
WATER CARRIERS                                               215
THE TOMBS OF THE KHALIFS                                     218
A STREET IN BÛLAK                                            219
A HOLY FAKIR                                                 222
A WRECKED SHIP OF THE DESERT                                 223
AU REVOIR!                                                   225
IN THE SUEZ CANAL                                            226
A FEATHER MERCHANT                                           227
CETEWAYO DISGUISED AS A GENTLEMAN                            236
ADENESE WOMEN                                                240
A FAMILIAR FACE                                              261
THE END                                                      268



CHAPTER I.


                          [Picture: Terra Firma]

It is commonly supposed by landsmen that the perils of ocean travelling
are much greater than those encountered upon land.  For my own part, I
believe that, once on the open sea, there is no pleasanter or safer mode
of locomotion than is to be found in a well-appointed sailing ship or
steamer.  I certainly was in much greater danger of being drowned while
travelling on the railway between Bristol and Plymouth upon one occasion
than I have ever known myself to be while on board ship. The autumn had
been exceedingly wet, and the low-lying districts in Somersetshire had
become flooded, causing the railway to be completely submerged for a
distance of about three miles.  The water reached to the floors of the
railway carriages, while the locomotive in its progress made a great wave
in front of the train.  The wheels of the locomotive were 8ft. 10in. in
height, and the fire-box was 6ft. above the ground.  Boats accompanied
the train on either side during its passage through the water.  Certainly
I have never felt in so much danger in the 60,000 miles of ocean
travelling which I have had since then.  Not that there are no dangers to
be met with on the water, as I found to my alarm before I had fairly
commenced my last voyage.

Our vessel lay three miles off the Hoe, at Plymouth, and we had engaged a
large sailing boat to take us on board.  When we had got half way to the
ship, and had lost the shelter of the land, a fierce squall struck the
sail and turned the boat over on its side, throwing us into a confused
heap on its bottom.  The boatman tried to lower the sail, but having tied
it in a fast knot he could not do so, and had no means of cutting the
rope.  The rain came down pitilessly all the time, and the waves dashed
over us, drenching us to the skin, darkness coming on in the meantime.
For a few moments we almost gave ourselves up as lost, but fortunately
the violence of the wind lessened, the boat righted itself, and we got
alongside our ship, but were unable in the darkness and the rush of the
water and the noise of the wind and rain to make ourselves heard.  My
companion and I had to climb up the rope-ladder attached to the ship, and
to scramble over its side as best we could, in the confusion altogether
forgetting to take leave of our friends who were in the boat below, and
who were lost to sight the instant we got on to the deck.

On entering the saloon the contrast was very great.  The big ship riding
at anchor was as steady as the land we had just left.  The saloon was
brilliantly lighted; and the passengers who had joined the ship at
Gravesend were sitting round the table engaged in various occupations;
some were reading or writing, while others were playing at whist, or were
engaged in conversation.  Being new arrivals, there was considerable
curiosity to see which cabin we should call our own.

To a man taking his first voyage the phrase “cabin’d, cribb’d, confin’d”
is at once understood as he surveys the cabin, a portion of which is to
be his home for a month or two.  The first feeling is that it will be
impossible to bestow all his belongings in the limited space at his
disposal, but before he has been long on board things settle down into
their places, and he almost begins to wonder what he shall do with all
the room.

The first night on board ship is generally one of great confusion.  The
passengers seem to be in everybody’s way; but immediately after leaving
port the baggage is stowed away, the purser allots the seats at table,
and everything goes on with the greatest regularity.

The passengers on board one of the great Australian ships form a perfect
epitome of the great world ashore.  The line of division is sharply drawn
between the various sets or cliques.  Many never condescend to notice
numbers of their fellow-passengers during the whole voyage; but for the
most part fraternisation becomes general after the first fortnight has
passed.

A three months’ voyage often enables a man to form a juster appreciation
of the character of his fellow-passengers than many years’ residence in
the same neighbourhood would do on shore; hence it often happens that
life-friendships of the warmest kind are formed on board ship.  On
steamers bound for the Colonies representatives of almost every class are
to be found.  Judges returning to their duties after a holiday all too
short; colonial statesmen with sufficient time on their hands to allow of
their formulating a policy to meet every conceivable combination among
their parliamentary opponents; and squatters and merchants returning to
the Colonies to look after their property or their business.  These men
are generally very much preoccupied, and their only anxiety appears to be
to get as speedily as possible to their destination.

Another class is composed of clergymen and professional men taking a
holiday, and generally speaking with every sign of great enjoyment; while
two other classes are largely represented—viz., invalids in search of
health, and young ne’er-do-wells sent to the Colonies under the mistaken
idea of their being more likely to reform in a new country.  The latter
class is mainly composed of young fellows who have never been brought up
to any trade or calling at home, and who, with their friends, seem to
think that the Colonies are a sort of “Tom Tiddler’s ground,” where they
can “pick up gold and silver.”

These youths are sent out by their friends as a last chance, under what
is known as the “private convict system,” and I believe that a very small
proportion of them ever take a position of respectability after landing
in the Colonies.  Nor is it to be wondered at, for on the principle of
“birds of a feather,” etc., these young men get together on the outward
voyage, and all their previous vices become much intensified by the
association.  On the other hand, many young men of good character, going
out to the Colonies in search of employment, and showing by their conduct
during the voyage that they are self-respecting, and consequently
trustworthy, have secured good appointments from colonial merchants
before leaving the ship.

Those who take the voyage on account of impaired health mainly consist of
men suffering from overwork, and invalids more or less affected with
pulmonary disease.  In the case of the former a long voyage is the surest
remedy; and for those in the earliest stage of consumption it is
generally found to be efficacious; but it would be impossible to devise a
more cruel fate for such as are thoroughly affected by that fell disease
than to send them out on a long voyage.  The conditions are all against
them; the draught in the saloon is always great, and there is a total
absence of those little comforts and delicacies which consumptive
patients so greatly need, and the lack of which is so sorely felt.
Doctors who have never made a voyage little think to what a miserable
fate they are dooming their consumptive patients when they order them to
take a sea voyage.  In five cases out of six these patients are sent out
too late, and the voyage only hastens their inevitable end, while, if
they had only been sent in the earliest stages of the disease, they would
almost certainly have been restored.

I started on my first Australian voyage on a lovely day in the late
autumn.  The sun was shining brilliantly, and as there was very little
wind we fondly hoped we should cross the Bay of Biscay without having to
go through the disagreeable experiences usually met with there; but our
hopes were rudely dispelled when, after two days, having fairly got into
the bay, we found a strong “nor’-wester” blowing, with heavy seas and
torrents of rain.

Our ship was a duplicate of the ill-fated “London,” and the officers
comforted us with the information that we were just on the spot where she
had gone down a few years before.

The wind and waves had been increasing in force during the day; but at
four o’clock, just as we were sitting down to dinner, a heavy sea burst
’tween decks with a great uproar, breaking through the doors leading from
the main-deck to the saloon, swamping the nearest cabins, and completely
scattering the dinner, dishes and all.

The stewards had a busy time of it for the next two hours in mopping and
baling the water out, and in preparing another dinner.  Many of us,
however, preferred retiring to our berths, the weather in the meantime
getting decidedly worse.  Presently another sea was shipped, deluging our
cabin, amongst others, and leaving us in perfect darkness; while the
noise of the sailors tramping overhead, the smashing of crockery, and the
falling of blocks and ropes, the shouts of the officers, and the
continual roar of the storm, effectually banished sleep for the night.  I
gained, however, one valuable piece of information, for as a result of
the storm I learned a certain cure for sea-sickness!  I had been quite
ill before the final burst, but the excitement from this cured me
instantly.

During the night we travelled out of the storm into smoother water, and
it was curious to note the effect of this improved state of affairs, and
of the bright sunshine, in bringing fresh faces on deck.

The life of a steward on board one of these ships is not an enviable one.
He has to be up at work at four o’clock, washing and scrubbing the
saloon; to wait at table four times a day; to make the beds, and attend
to the cabins; and to be generally useful amongst the passengers, rarely
finishing before ten o’clock at night.  Our steward was a very handy
fellow.  He informed me he had a brother in New Zealand in practice as a
doctor, who wanted him to settle there, but he preferred “a life on the
ocean wave.”  He strongly recommended us to bathe frequently in salt
water, saying it “was good for the spin-ial orgins!”

            [Picture: Teneriffe (from a sketch by J. Willis)]

Eight days after leaving Plymouth we passed the Canary Islands, steaming
between Teneriffe and Gomera.  The weather was delightful, and we had a
fine view of the famous Peak, which rises apparently straight out of the
sea to a height of 12,000 feet.  These islands form a province of Spain,
and are volcanic in their origin.  The last eruption was in 1824.  The
vegetable productions of the islands are very varied.  Palms and tropical
plants grow near the sea; higher up cereals are grown; above, laurels;
and still higher, pines and the white broom.  The islands also produce
oranges, lemons, dates, sugar-cane, cotton, and silk.

        [Picture: The “Sports” (from a sketch by G. A. Musgrave)]

Soon after passing the Canaries the Tropics are entered; and some of us
begin to feel, for the first time, what heat really is.  Awnings are
fixed, and preparations are made for various kinds of amusements, amongst
which the most popular are quoits, a run with the hounds, jumping in
sacks by moonlight, racing in sacks, etc.

The game of quoits is much in favour with those who can play it, but it
is a most selfish affair, for half-a-dozen men monopolise the whole of
one side of the deck—and that the best or upper side—and, beginning at
ten in the morning, continue till the dinner hour.

These are the day amusements.  In the evenings there are concerts,
recitations, and occasionally theatrical performances.  Some passengers
are of a studious turn, and divide their time between reading, writing,
and walking, while others—notably young men from the Colonies—recline at
ease during the day and become lively at night, often perambulating the
decks with heavy heels till the small hours of the morning, to the great
discomfort of those sleeping below.

Our second-class fellow-passengers commenced the concert season by giving
a very amusing entertainment in their saloon.  The first piece on the
programme was an “overture by the band”—the band being represented by a
single concertina.  The chairman, a jolly-looking old tar, tried three
pieces, and broke down in amidst roars of laughter and calls for the
chorus.  An “ancient buffer” sang “My Pretty Jane,” and a few other
sentimental things, with looks of fond affection.  Then came a solo by
“Bones,” and another sailor gave a song which recounted his many
ailments.  He said he had had “brownchitis,” “scarlatina,” “concertina,”
and “tightness in the chest.”  Then a melancholy youth ground out
something about his love for a “Little brown jug,” calling frequently for
a chorus, the whole ending with “God save the Queen.”

We had other concerts during the voyage, and it was noticeable that the
peculiarity which is said to attend amateur performances on land was not
absent with us, for our concerts were usually productive of anything but
harmony—at any rate amongst the singers.  Those who were first invited to
sing usually had colds, and those who were free from colds often declined
because they were not invited first.  Even the singing of hymns at the
evening service was more than once made the occasion of heated
discussion.

Another mode of occupying leisure hours on board ship as soon as the
passengers have fairly settled down for the voyage is to start a
newspaper.  A few of the passengers meet and choose an editor, and the
general public are invited to send contributions to him.  At the outset
promises of help are very abundant, but, as a matter of fact, the work
has to be done by a very few persons.  The paper appears weekly, in
manuscript, and is usually read aloud by the editor after dinner on the
day of issue.

Sometimes it is agreed to have the paper printed on reaching the Colony,
and when that is determined upon one or two individuals undertake the
duty of passing it through the press, and of forwarding it to the various
subscribers.  As a rule the same persons rarely undertake the duty twice,
for it is a very arduous and oft-times thankless task.

Some of the more cautious subscribers object to paying in advance, or
require guarantees for due delivery and for the proper performance of the
work.  On one occasion one of my companions undertook the work of
preparing the paper for the press, and correcting the proofs; it took him
nearly three weeks to do so, and I am sure he will never undertake a
similar task.  The colonial printer gave him a great deal of trouble,
persisting in ignoring his corrections, and in “improving the text” by
altering it according to his own ideas.  One peculiarity of amateur
authorship came out into strong relief in the printing of this paper—the
number of quotations and of inverted commas was so great that our
printer’s stock was quite exhausted, and he had to send all round the
city to borrow a sufficient supply.

         [Picture: The Captain (from a sketch by G. A. Musgrave)]

In a three months’ voyage the advantage of having a genial captain is
obvious, and in this respect we were most fortunate, for it was
impossible for anyone to be kinder or more considerate.  Our captain
entered heartily into all our amusements and schemes for the relief of
the monotony of the voyage, and was ably seconded in his efforts by his
amiable wife.

Sometimes it did appear to some of the more eager and impatient of the
passengers that the captain was fonder of being on the water than they
were; for he had a great regard for his sails, and whenever the wind
developed unusual energy had no hesitation in diminishing the rate of our
progress by shortening sail.  The first officer, perhaps with the
rashness of youth, would crowd all sail during his watch before
breakfast, but when the captain made his appearance an order to “Take in
those sails” would be promptly addressed to the chief.

Our captain had made the voyage more than twenty times, and had very
carefully studied and noted the meteorological signs in various
latitudes.  The sky seemed like a book to him, and often when we could
see no indications of change—and it was wonderful how quickly changes
sometimes came—he would rapidly make his arrangements, and was rarely
caught by the most sudden of tropical squalls.  Our first experience of
one of these squalls was when we were fifty miles to the south of
Madeira.  The weather had been fine all day, but about five o’clock we
were aroused by great activity on the part of the officers and crew, who
acted as though they expected to be boarded by pirates.  The sky had
become cloudy, and we were told that a squall was expected.  The captain
stood at the stern and gave his orders to the first officer in a quiet
manner, while the latter shouted them to the sailors, who at once began
to climb and pull at the ropes, all the while singing their sea songs.
In the meantime the wind had come up, and was blowing like a hurricane
through the rigging, and then the rain came down in torrents.  While this
was going on we saw a ship at a little distance, also overtaken by the
squall, and it was wonderful to see how soon they took in her sails—it
was done in a twinkling.  Our vessel rolled and pitched heavily, and
everything looked wet and wretched; but the squall passed off almost as
quickly as it came, and the sun shone out, and everything looked smiling
again.  Unfortunately, during the storm the wind changed right ahead.

Our captain was a Tory, as most long-voyage captains are.  I have often
thought it strange that it should be so, seeing that the whole purpose of
a captain’s life is to make progress on his voyage; but it would appear
that, although he is always progressing, he invariably comes back to his
starting point.

At dinner one day, happening to say I was from Birmingham, the captain
said jocularly, “Oh, that’s where all the shams come from!”

Now the captain hails from London, but his wife is an Irish lady, so I
answered, “No, captain, the things known as Brummagem shams are like the
Irish bulls, and are, for the most part, manufactured in London.”

“That’s so,” said the captain’s wife; “well done, Mr. Tangye,” and the
captain subsided.

Truly life on shipboard is a curious medley.  Here is a picture of what
went on one night.  In the lower tier of cabins lies a young man in the
last stage of consumption, and almost in the agonies of death; in a cabin
just above him is another suffering from scarlet fever; within a few feet
of these are mothers nursing their babies.  Sitting in a corner of the
saloon is another young man, also in the final stage of consumption, away
from all his friends, and without a single acquaintance on board; in
front of him are two card parties, one of them playing for money, and
looking as eager about it as though dear life depended on success.

While all this is going on below, what might have been a tragedy is being
enacted on deck, for the quartermaster went suddenly mad while standing
at the wheel.  The captain had just given him some instructions, but he
did not seem to take kindly to them, and was inclined to be disputatious.
Presently he said, with an oath, “I won’t argue with you to-night,
captain.”  The captain then ordered another man to take the wheel, when
the poor fellow ran along the deck and fell forward, kicking vigorously.
The captain, thinking the man was in a fit, summoned the doctor, who,
after waiting till the patient became quieter, tried to persuade him to
go forward with him.  The man, however, suddenly sprang up and aimed a
tremendous blow at the poor little doctor, who, fortunately, being
cunning of fence, managed to evade it.  He then chased the doctor around
the deck, and would doubtless have thrown him overboard if he could have
caught him.  The first officer then came to the rescue and seized the
lunatic, but, although a very strong man, the doctor and he were unable
to hold him, and ultimately it took six men to carry him forward.  At
last they managed to secure him, as they thought, but in a very short
time the sailors came rushing pell-mell on to the poop-deck, the maniac
having got loose and begun to chase them with a long fork.  It was some
time before they could again secure him, but finally they succeeded, and
put him into a strait-jacket.

In the morning the first officer went to see the poor fellow, who asked
him to shake hands, but the officer declined.  “Well, sir,” said the man,
“I saved all your lives last night, for if I hadn’t put the ship about
she would have been right into that other ship on the starboard bow!”  Of
course this was entirely a delusion, for there had been no ship there.

Soon after entering the Tropics on one of my voyages, one of the
second-class passengers was taken ill, and died in a few hours; he had
been suffering from an attack of _delirium tremens_.  The funeral was
arranged to take place at 7.30 on the following morning, and at the
appointed time the body, which had been sewn up in sail-cloth, was placed
on trestles on the main deck, opposite a port-hole, the “Union Jack”
covering it.  Presently the bell began to toll, while the clergyman and
captain read the service for the dead, and when the latter came to the
passage “We therefore commit his body to the deep,” he looked at the
sailors, who at once loosed the corpse, which, being weighted with iron,
shot through the open port-hole into the water with a great splash.
During the ceremony the engines were stopped.

The day following was Sunday, and it being a glorious day, with a
perfectly smooth sea, it was arranged for the service to be held on deck,
which was covered with an awning.  One of the passengers had brought a
set of hand-bells with him, and he and some others rang out a peal before
the service, the effect being curious.

The water was of a beautiful purple colour, and the sky a deep blue, and
some large white birds were lazily flying around the ship.  Under these
unusual circumstances, and with the solemn incident of the burial of the
poor drunkard on the previous day, one would have thought that even the
dullest minister would have felt a thrill of inspiration.  Judge, then,
of our surprise when the parson commenced talking to us about geology!
Nor did he make the slightest reference to the scene around him during
the whole sermon.  He told us, incidentally, that miners had not yet
succeeded in getting more than twelve miles deep!  During the afternoon I
ventured to ask him where the mine was situated of which he had spoken,
as, happening to know something about mining operations, I was anxious to
know how the miners managed to pump the water from a depth of twelve
miles.  He answered testily, “I was not speaking of any particular mine.”

On one occasion a discussion arose as to the best means to be adopted to
ensure the attendance of the working classes at church.  The reverend
gentleman told us that for his part he had no difficulty in getting
people to attend his church—all classes and conditions of people came to
hear him, and yet he took no special means to secure their attendance.
Not being impressed with the parson’s eloquence, we were at a loss to
understand how it was that he was so successful, when far abler and more
attractive men failed so conspicuously; but he vouchsafed no explanation.
On arriving in the Colony the explanation was forthcoming, for I found
that our reverend friend was chaplain to a cemetery!

On another occasion the old gentleman preached a sermon in which he
related an anecdote of a soldier who was mortally wounded on the field of
Waterloo.  One of the chaplains found the poor fellow, who showed him a
Bible which he had always carried in his pocket, it having been given him
by his mother on leaving home.  “Doubtless,” said the clergyman, “this
young man, having served his country to the death, went straight to
glory.”  Curiously enough, in the lesson for that day occurred the verse,
“Love your enemies,” etc., so during the day I asked him how he
reconciled the verse with the idea of the red-handed soldier going
straight to glory?  The parson (who was an Irishman) replied, “Sure, the
soldier was heaping _fire_ on his enemy’s head!”

            [Picture: Ascension (from a sketch by J. Willis)]

In about eighteen days after leaving Plymouth we reached the island of
Ascension, whose fine group of volcanic peaks formed a magnificent object
from our steamer.  The island is used as a sanatorium for the British
Colonies on the west coast of Africa.  It has an area of about
thirty-five square miles, and produces an abundance of turtles,
pheasants, peafowl, and eggs, while tomatoes, castor-oil plants, and
pepper, are indigenous.

The first officer went ashore with a boat to take our letters, and to
bring back some turtles for use during the voyage.  Immediately the boat
left the ship we saw a big shark following close in its wake, the brute’s
fin showing above the water until the landing-stage was reached.  This
gave us some concern, as sharks are very bold at times, and have been
known to snap at a hand hanging over the side of a boat.  We saw large
numbers about the ship during our stay, and one of the passengers shot
several of them with a rifle.  One was quite near to the ship when shot,
and on feeling the bullet leaped right out of the water, and was
instantly attacked and doubtless devoured by its brethren on falling back
into the sea.  We also put out a hook baited with pork, and observed
several of the sharks make attempts upon it; but they appeared to be very
clumsy, for they repeatedly missed it.  Presently, however, one fellow
got the hook firmly into his mouth, and we hauled him in over the stern
on to the poop.  He dashed about madly, looked very vicious, and reared
right up on end, when the sailors barbarously hacked his tail off.  Soon
he was hauled on to the main-deck and quickly despatched, his teeth being
on sale at a shilling each in less than an hour afterwards.  Three
turtles were brought on board “all alive,” and placed on their backs on
the deck until they were required by the cook.  They each measured
5ft.6in. long by 3ft. wide, and 6ft.8in. in girth, and each weighed about
330 lbs.

One day we had very rough weather, with an occasional sea dashing over
the deck, along which the dinner was brought from the kitchen.  My
steward quietly told me to take none of the turtle soup, and I obeyed.
After dinner I asked him why he advised me to let the soup pass?  He said
that as they were coming along the deck a sea came over and washed half
the soup out of the tureen, decidedly mixing what was left!  Those who
partook of the soup remarked that the cook had put rather too much salt
to it; but they libelled that useful functionary.

         [Picture: Crossing the “Line”—“Why! don’t you see it?”]

One of our fellow-passengers was an old German lady, who was returning
from a visit to her fatherland.  She was very lively, and informed us she
had not told her husband she was returning by this ship, intending, as
she said, “to catch him on de hop,” but she did not know that the
passengers’ names were all sent on by the mail, which went faster than we
did; so when we got to the port her husband, “Shemmy” (Jemmy), as she
called him, had come out with the pilot, and was very near catching her
on “de hop,” for she was a very lively old lady.  One morning, while we
were in the Tropics, upon getting on deck, we found the old lady dressed
from head to foot in scarlet!  It was too much, with the thermometer at
101° in the shade, so a deputation waited upon her and begged her to
shade her glory, for it was too overpowering.

                [Picture: The “Baby Hippopotamus” at Play]



CHAPTER II.


After being a month at sea the sailors performed the ceremony called
“Burying the Dead Horse,” the explanation of which is this: Before
leaving port seamen are paid a month in advance, so as to enable them to
leave some money with their wives, or to buy a new kit, etc., and having
spent the money they consider the first month goes for nothing, and so
call it “Working off the Dead Horse.”  The crew dress up a figure to
represent a horse; its body is made out of a barrel, its extremities of
hay or straw covered with canvas, the mane and tail of hemp, the eyes of
two ginger beer bottles, sometimes filled with phosphorus.  When complete
the noble steed is put on a box, covered with a rug, and on the evening
of the last day of the month a man gets on to his back, and is drawn all
round the ship by his shipmates, to the chanting of the following
doggerel:—

                [Picture: Music to Burying the Dead Horse]

                           BURYING THE DEAD HORSE.

    You have come a long long way,
       And we say so, for we know so.
    For to be sold upon this day,
       Poor old man.

    You are goin’ now to say good-bye,
       And we say so, for we know so.
    Poor old horse you’re a goin’ to die,
       Poor Old Man.

Having paraded the decks in order to get an audience, the sale of the
horse by auction is announced, and a glib-mouthed man mounts the rostrum
and begins to praise the noble animal, giving his pedigree, etc., saying
it was a good one to go, for it had gone 6,000 miles in the past month!
The bidding then commences, each bidder being responsible only for the
amount of his advance on the last bid.  After the sale the horse and its
rider are run up to the yard-arm amidst loud cheers.  Fireworks are let
off, the man gets off the horse’s back, and, cutting the rope, lets it
fall into the water.  The _Requiem_ is then sung to the same melody.

    Now he is dead and will die no more,
       And we say so, for we know so.
    Now he is gone and will go no more;
       Poor Old Man.

                    [Picture: Burying the Dead Horse]

After this the auctioneer and his clerk proceed to collect the “bids,”
and if in your ignorance of auction etiquette you should offer your’s to
the auctioneer, he politely declines it, and refers you to his clerk!

As we neared the Equator the heat became very oppressive.  On October
2nd, when 7° north of the line, the thermometer stood at 120° in the sun,
while under the awning it registered 85°.  On the thermometer being
dipped into the sea the temperature of the surface water was found to be
82°, while in the cabin at midnight the thermometer stood at 80°, with
the wind blowing in at the open porthole.

In passing under the vertical sun the old proverb “may your shadow never
grow less” is entirely out of place, for it is impossible it can
diminish, unless, indeed, one should become like poor misguided Peter
Schlemihl, and find oneself altogether without one!  When standing
upright my shadow was about two feet in diameter, and it looked like the
shadow of the brim of my hat all round my feet.

The wife of the captain of our steamer had been very unwell until we had
passed the Equator, and had not come out of her cabin.  One evening, soon
after she made her first appearance, I was chatting with her, when,
finding I was from Cornwall, she asked me if I knew a certain
watering-place in that county which she named.  It happened that I had a
residence at the place in question, and curiously enough she had been a
visitor at the same house before I had it, and she said, “last year my
sister was staying in the neighbourhood with some friends, when they were
nearly caught by the tide on the beach opposite the house, and had to
scale the face of the cliff, climbing up some old ladders left in an
abandoned mine.”  I told her if they had taken my advice, and had turned
back, they would not have had such an unpleasant adventure, for I
happened to be on the beach at the time, and warned the party of their
danger, but they disregarded it!  It was curious to be reminded of this
occurrence under such circumstances.

Amongst our fellow-passengers were two young men, whose friends, it was
reported, had become tired of them at home, and had made a present of
them to the Colonies.  They were very lively youths, and did their best
to keep the ship lively by their pranks and escapades.  They were known
by the names of “Tall and Fat,” and “Short and Stout,” and were always
together.  Sometimes, however, the playfulness of these two young men
received an unexpected check.  On one occasion they had gone “forward” to
play some tricks upon the emigrants, who, however, did not see the fun;
so, having got the lads into a corner, they covered them, first with
molasses and then with flour, and so returned them to the saloon.  They
did not repeat their visit.

There is one feature on board many ships which always strikes passengers
with surprise; and that is the impunity with which the “wild spirits”
carry on their disorderly conduct.  Drinking, betting, shouting, tramping
the deck at unseemly hours of the night, are permitted, to the great
annoyance of the majority; but it is in vain that you appeal to the
officers—they will not interfere.  On one occasion a noisy youth, who
went by the name of the “Blatant Beast,” was firing a revolver about “at
large,” and although we appealed to the captain, and begged that he would
disarm the lad, it was useless—he would not interfere.  Ultimately the
young man accidentally discharged the pistol and broke his arm, and so
relieved his neighbours from further apprehensions for a time.

One night “Short and Stout” and “Tall and Fat,” and a few other rowdies,
got drunk, and in their rambles found a poor harmless cat, which they
chased all over the ship, and succeeded in killing.  On the following day
these gallant youths determined, in Irish phrase, to “wake” the cat.
They proceeded to fit up one of their cabins as a chapel, and upon a bier
the corpse of poor pussy was laid, having been dressed for the occasion,
candles surrounding the body.  The mourners, or murderers, stood around
the body with pipes in their mouths, meggy-howling and cat-a-wauling in a
most vigorous fashion, afterwards parading the deck, headed by one of
their party, arrayed in a dress coat over a night shirt, and wearing a
tall white hat, carrying the dead body of poor puss before him.

Betting is often carried on to a great extent, considerable sums of money
changing hands.  One passenger told me, after we had been some weeks at
sea, that he had cleared enough to pay for his own passage, and also for
that of his wife and child, and that it only remained for him to win
enough to pay for the nurse, and to take them all from Australia to New
Zealand, and he should be happy!  I knew one man, the father of a very
large family, who lost £700 in three weeks, £400 of it going at a single
night’s play; yet, with striking consistency, this open-handed gentleman
refused to allow his wife and daughters to go on shore at one of the most
interesting of our ports of call on the score of the expense, which he
said would amount to at least £2 or £3!

A pleasant sight it is to watch the fish and birds which begin to make
their appearance about 30° S.  Occasionally flocks of flying-fish are to
be seen flying a few feet above the water, pursued by dolphins.
Sometimes their headlong flight carries them right on to the deck, or
through the cabin windows when lighted up after nightfall.  They are
caught by the sailors at night by the simple device of suspending a net
in front of a lantern, and they are said to be very good when cooked.

We first saw that splendid bird, the albatross, when about 28° S.
latitude, and when more than 1,000 miles from land.  They appeared in
flocks, and would follow the ship for many days.  Their flight is
exceedingly graceful, and very rapid, the movement of their wings being
scarcely perceptible.  The capture of the albatross is a favourite
amusement upon sailing ships—it is scarcely possible to catch them from a
steamer—the plan being to let out a line over the stern, having a strong
hook baited with a piece of meat or with red cloth.  We were successful
in catching a magnificent fellow, which measured 15ft. across its wings.
A drop of prussic acid applied to the eye of the poor creature causes
instant death.  The breast forms an excellent muff, and the wing bones
make good stems for pipes of the “churchwarden” pattern.  One of our
passengers was a fiery Irishman, who was travelling with his
newly-married wife.  One day, while at dinner, the ship gave a heavy
lurch, and the lady fell back, breaking her chair; upon which her
husband, in a great rage, seized the chair, and, rushing on deck, threw
it overboard, when lo! a flock of albatrosses crowded around it, and one
fine fellow “took” the chair, and appeared to be addressing his friends!

One of the most beautiful creatures to be seen in tropical waters is the
“Portuguese Man-of-War.”  It is often confounded with the Nautilus, but
is a quite distinct organism; it has a crest which can be raised or
lowered at will, and its body consists of a long, horizontal, oblong
bladder filled with air.  They vary in size from 12in. diameter to small
discs no larger than a shilling, and present a beautiful appearance as
the ship passes by a fleet of them.

          [Picture: (A) The “Classic” Dolphin.  (B) The Dolphin]

We caught some dolphins, and an examination of their stomachs proved they
were not unjustly suspected of eating the pretty little flying-fish.  The
pilot-fish, also found in these latitudes, is coloured purple and silver,
with five black bands across it, and is about five inches in length.  We
also saw specimens of the white shark, porpoises, grampuses, Mother
Carey’s chickens, booby-birds, etc.

One of the most interesting sights at sea is the passing of ships.  I
shall never forget our meeting a ship in full sail one glorious moonlight
night.  It came close to us, the moon shining full on its sails, and
being like our vessel, a sailing ship, not a sound was heard until our
captain hailed the stranger, and asked him to report us “all well.”

One would think there was not much danger of collision at sea, in broad
daylight and in the open ocean, but on one occasion, while in a sailing
ship, another came so close to us that it was only by the most dexterous
management on the part of our captain that a collision was avoided.

The monotony of a long voyage is occasionally relieved by the opportunity
of sending letters in homeward-bound ships, and when we had been out
about a month we were told to have our letters ready, for a ship was in
sight.  Everyone was immediately deeply engaged in writing, and presently
the stranger came sufficiently near for us to communicate with her.  Our
signal was run up, “Will you take letters for us?” to which she quickly
replied, “With pleasure,” and then a boat left us to take our letter-bag
on board the “homeward-bound.”  This vessel was from Moulmein with teak,
and she had been one hundred days out.  Those on board had heard nothing
of the Cabul massacre, but they brought us news of the capture of
Cetewayo, having got it from a passing ship.  In return for this
intelligence we told them of the death of the Prince Imperial, which they
had not heard of, although it happened before the capture of Cetewayo.

Some of our passengers went on board the passing ship, and two of them
scrambled up the rigging, and presently we saw a sailor follow them and
tie their legs to the rigging, releasing them as soon as they had paid
their footing.  In the evening the two ships parted company, saluting
each other with rockets of various colours.

While our letters were being taken on board the homeward-bound ship, we
saw a huge shark follow the boat until it reached the vessel, and on
hearing a shout, “a big fish!” we ran to the ship’s side and saw a whale
not more than a hundred feet off.  The monster gave a loud snort, spouted
water, and then made off.  I wonder if it had any idea what we were?

There was a boxing match going forward one day, when the captain invited
the parson to put the gloves on.  “Oh, no,” he said, “I am a man of peace
_now_.”  He told me he objected to war as much as anyone could do.
“But,” I said, “your Church does not.”  He replied that there was nothing
in the teaching of the Church which advocated war; so I asked him, if
that was the case, what that part of the prayer-book meant where a hope
is expressed that the Queen may “vanquish and overcome all her enemies.”

At dinner one day our friend undertook to explain to us how drain-pipes
were made.  He said, “You know those round things that are put in the
earth to carry off the water?”  Some one suggested drain-pipes.  “Ah,
yes,” he said, “you know they take a kind of clay not like other clay,
and put it into a sort of machine and turn it around and the pipes are
made.”  I thought his description was not so good as that of the Irishman
who explained the manufacture of cast-iron pipes by saying, “You take a
round hole and pour the metal around it.”

                       [Picture: A Colonial Parson]

Some one remarking that we were now 36° south, he said, “Ah, that is just
4° below freezing,” having confused the degrees of latitude with those of
the thermometer.  Upon being told that 32° was the freezing point.
“Really?” he said, “I always thought it was 40°.”

In listening to most of the clergymen with whom I have travelled, I have
been irresistibly reminded of the complaint made so bitterly, and with so
much truth, by Australian importers in the early gold-finding days, that
English merchants and manufacturers were utterly reckless as to the
quality of the goods they sent out, acting on the principle that
“anything will do for the Colonies.”  This idea has long ceased to have
any currency, for it has been discovered that the coinage of the
Australian mint ranks equally with that of London, but it does not appear
that those responsible for the due supply of clergymen to the Colonies
have realised the same truth, for on every hand I have had my own
experience confirmed.  The general complaint amongst the colonists,
especially in the country districts, is that either young and totally
inexperienced men are sent to them, or else men who have proved failures
at home; and they not unnaturally resent such treatment.

In a recent voyage we had a large number of steerage passengers, and
amongst them was a very earnest, hard-working evangelist from Mr.
Spurgeon’s college; this man had sacrificed his ease during the voyage by
attending to the sick and ailing “in season and out of season,” and was
admitted on all sides to have done much good; frequently, too, he held
religious services amongst the steerage passengers, and met with great
acceptance.  One man had been very ill for a long time, and had been
tenderly waited upon by the evangelist.  After a time he became suddenly
worse, and some passengers at once went to a clergyman, who suggested
that the Communion should be administered.  Having obtained the help of
another clergyman and two or three of the passengers—none of whom had
before shown any interest in the patient—they proceeded on their errand
without saying a word to the evangelist, and on the following Sunday the
clergyman preached a sermon to the poor people, endeavouring to prove
that no one had any right to teach or to preach but members of his
Church, who, only, held the true commission, by virtue of what he called
the “direct succession from Peter:” and I suppose he thought he was
preaching religion, not perceiving that he lacked what Paul described as
being the highest of all the Christian virtues—that of charity.

In passing through the Tropics one of the most glorious sights is the
phosphorescence in the sea.  Of course it can be seen to the greatest
advantage in the absence of the moon; it is something wonderful, and
worth coming all the way to see.  As far as the eye can reach, the track
of the vessel is marked out with the utmost brilliancy, and sometimes
tiny balls of phosphorus seem to explode, scattering their radiance far
and wide.

We had as fellow-passengers three young men who rarely spoke to anyone
outside their own party, and during the early part of the voyage they
usually sat on the deck for hours at a time engaged in reading their
Bibles and making notes on the margin.  After we had been out a few weeks
the youngest of the three was stricken with scarlet fever, and at one
time he was seriously ill.

The trio were known as the “Danite Band.”  The eldest was a young man
about twenty-one, and one evening I had a little chat with him.  He said
he belonged to no sect; he had “come out from among them”—that his soul
was safe, die when he would, and that he could only look on the poor
sinners around him with a pitying eye, and pray for their souls.  He was
rejoicing at having saved one soul since he came on board.  It so
happened that this young man occupied the same cabin as the youth who was
ill with fever, but becoming alarmed for his personal safety (not his
soul’s), he requested to be accommodated elsewhere, while another
passenger volunteered to take his place and to nurse the invalid, so they
exchanged cabins.  On the following Sunday the young man who had
volunteered as nurse knocked at the pious young man’s door and asked for
his boots, receiving for answer, “I won’t be bothered about boots on the
Lord’s Day.”

It is usual to hold a bazaar on passenger ships proceeding to or from the
Colonies.  These bazaars are almost invariably held in aid of the funds
of the Merchant Seaman’s Hospital and other similar institutions, and a
large sum is annually obtained in this way.  The result in the case of
the sailing vessel in which I made one of my voyages was a sum of over
£50, besides some annual subscriptions, although the number of adult
saloon passengers was only about thirty.

Great preparations were made for this bazaar, it being the event of the
voyage.  The day previous the sailors were busily engaged closing-in the
promenade deck with canvas and bunting, and dividing it off into stalls
by means of flags and other coloured materials.  While thus engaged,
another sailing vessel came in sight, and the sea being nearly dead calm
the two vessels approached closely, and parties were speedily passing to
and fro.  We invited some of the passengers in the stranger to join us
to-morrow, and they invested about £5 in lotteries before going back for
the night.

Next day was a most lovely one, but a heavy rolling sea was sufficient to
prevent our visitors of yesterday joining us.  Nevertheless, we
thoroughly enjoyed the day ourselves, for the whole ship’s
company—passengers, crew, men, women, and children—held high carnival on
the promenade deck.  It was pretty to see the children of the second
class who, owing to the high bulwarks, were rarely able to see over the
ship’s side, rush first of all to look over the rail at the heaving sea.

The first officer was dressed as a showman, and presided over the Fine
Art Exhibition, his face being painted a fine terra-cotta tint.  The crew
and stewards were variously costumed as nigger minstrels, etc.  The
stalls were presided over by the ladies, who, as usual, were very
successful in disposing of the various articles, which, by the way, were
for the most part made up by the ladies themselves during the voyage.
Much curiosity was excited by the announcement of a dramatic performance,
entitled “The White Squall,” which was to take place in the Theatre
Royal.  The _corps dramatique_ evinced great anxiety to secure the
attendance of the whole ship’s company, and were fairly successful.  The
performance did not take long, for as soon as the audience were seated
cries of “Let go” were heard from the actors, upon which the air was
filled with a veritable “White Squall,” consisting of clouds of flour,
causing a general stampede.

Next day we found our companion of yesterday lying at some distance
ahead, while a stranger lay on the port quarter.  A curious instance of
cross-signalling ensued.  The stranger asks our companion, the St.
Vincent, for latitude and longitude.  The St. Vincent missing this, and
intent on their investment in yesterday’s lottery, puts up, “What have we
won?”  The reply, “Nothing.”  The stranger runs up, “Don’t understand.
Repeat, please.”  Then St. Vincent replies, “Very sorry,” upon which our
Captain signals the stranger, and removes all further doubt.

We passed close to the Island of Tristan d’Acunha, which lies in the
South Atlantic, lat. 37° 6′ S., long. 12° 7′ W.  As a curious little
history attaches to the island, I make the following extract from our
ship’s newspaper:

“Tristan d’Acunha is a volcanic peak of very considerable altitude, so
considerable indeed that its summit is covered almost perpetually with
snow.  It rises sheer out of the water, and there is only a single
landing-place on the whole island.  Previous to the downfall of Bonaparte
it was uninhabited; but when that scourge was despatched to St. Helena,
the British Government deemed it advisable to secure this isolated rock,
and so prevent the French using it as a base of operations against the
place of Napoleon’s internment.  A small company of soldiers, in charge
of a corporal, was therefore despatched, and left in possession.

“In 1821 Napoleon died, and the necessity for maintaining the garrison at
Tristan existed no longer.  A man-of-war was accordingly sent to bring
away the corporal and his little army.  But he and they had by this time
comfortably settled down, tilled the—rock we were about to say—and
produced excellent potatoes and other vegetables; raised pigs and goats,
and having in some mysterious way obtained wives, had raised families
too.  They were therefore extremely reluctant to leave the scene of their
successful labours; and the English Government, nothing loth to encourage
colonisation, at once gave the necessary permission to remain, and with
it a small pension or annuity.

“They have gone on flourishing and increasing, forming a useful and
peaceable community in the very centre of the South Atlantic; useful
because whalers and other vessels, by putting in there, are able to
obtain fresh potatoes, vegetables, and pigs.  Little money is used,
barter affording sufficient facility for interchange.

“Crime is almost unknown.  We had as well said absolutely unknown, for it
is doubtful whether the one case of dishonesty on record as such was not
rather an ill-fared joke.  It seems that when a marriage takes place a
pig is killed by the bride’s father, and dressed the night before the
nuptials.  On the occasion referred to the pig disappeared before
morning, and was traced to the house of a notorious wag, as to whose fate
history is silent.  It is only fair to add that he admitted taking the
pig, but protested that it had been done by way of a practical joke.  At
one time a missionary existed in the midst of this innocent community,
but he eventually disappeared—either died or was removed.  His place was
never refilled, and the consequences have been rather trying to the
budding men and women of Tristan, for whereas in the missionary’s days
loving couples could be, to use a nautical phrase, “spliced,” when they
had made up their minds, now they must wait until a chance man-o’-war,
with a chaplain on board, puts in, and as their visits are nearly as rare
as those of the angels, the patience of these Tristan lovers must
unquestionably be sorely strained.  When, however, like some comet of
very eccentric orbit, the parson does at length turn up, he finds plenty
of ripe pairs ready—nay, eager—for him.

“What a popular man that parson must be!  Last and most interesting fact.
When the ‘Sobraon’ put in at Tristan in 1879 the corporal was still
living, a venerable patriarch of ninety years.”

After leaving Tristan we soon get “into the forties,” or as the sailors
are wont to say, “the rolling forties,” where the westerly winds steadily
prevail, and continue right on until we make Cape Leeuwin.  These winds
cause the magnificent waves, or “rollers,” which tower up over the stern
of the vessel, threatening, apparently, to overwhelm it.  In a gale of
wind, and when the “following seas” are running at a high speed, it
becomes necessary for some vessels to “lie to” in order to avoid this
catastrophe.  We had an opportunity of seeing this operation.  Soon after
passing the Cape we were overtaken by a heavy gale, and a high following
sea.  Our vessel being a sailing ship of the old type, with broad bluff
bows, necessitated our adopting that course.  Our stern was turned in the
teeth of the wind and sea, and, with the exception of a top-sail and
jib-sail, all our canvas was closely taken in.  She lay so all night
labouring heavily, and the sea breaking over her decks.

Soon after sighting Cape Otway vessels bound for Melbourne receive their
pilot, whose advent is the occasion of great excitement among the betting
fraternity.  Bets are laid on the colour of his hair and whiskers,
whether or not he has a moustache, the letter with which his name begins,
and which foot he will first put on deck.  As soon as he makes his
appearance he is greeted with shouts of “What’s your name?”  Evidently he
is accustomed to it, for he does not look surprised.  In this particular
case everyone was out as to the colour of his hair and beard, for he had
a black beard and white whiskers.  The pilot brought news of a general
election in one of the colonies, and one of our passengers, a colonial
statesman, eagerly asked him for papers.  The statesman’s countenance was
expressive of blankness within when he saw he was beaten in his
constituency—but soon brightened on hearing he was returned by another.

The entrance to Hobson’s Bay is very narrow, and the distance therefrom
to Melbourne is about 40 miles.  We landed soon after six on a January
morning, and found the heat almost unbearable.  Taking a cab to our
hotel, we made our first experience of the high charges in a
Protectionist colony, for we were obliged to pay a guinea for this
service.

                        [Picture: IN THE TROPICS]



CHAPTER III.


When driving to the hotel we were struck with the deserted appearance of
the streets, as very few persons were seen during our three miles’ ride
from Sandridge.  It did not occur to us that this arose from the
earliness of the hour, our day having commenced about three A.M., when we
began to make preparations for landing; but, as will be seen, the fact
became of startling significance to us.  While waiting for breakfast I
took up the newspaper, and had not proceeded far before I came to an
article headed “The Black Death in Melbourne.”  This article gave a
detailed and circumstantial account of the progress of the disease, which
was stated to have been raging for the past four or five weeks.  Among
other things, the article stated that the number of deaths had become so
great that it was impossible to dig separate graves; that the bodies were
placed in trenches, one being dug each day; that all who could leave the
city had fled; and that the mob had surrounded the Town Hall, demanding
to see the Mayor and Corporation, who, however, had already disappeared.
Getting alarmed, we rang for the waiter, and asked him how we could get
to Adelaide.  He naturally enough seemed surprised, as we had only just
arrived.  I told him it was too bad he had not warned us of the state of
the city, and of the existence of the plague.  The man looked astonished.
I asked him if there had not been great illness and mortality in the
city.  He answered that there had been a few cases of measles, and a
whooping-cough or two, and that six people had died during the last week
from these causes.  I began to suspect we had been “sold,” and was about
to pass the paper to him when I caught sight of an asterisk placed
against the heading, and on looking at the foot of the column saw that
the article was written as a prediction of what would happen in Melbourne
within 100 years unless sanitary matters were at once attended to.

Melbourne is a city of fine broad streets, handsome public buildings,
splendid shops, and vast warehouses.  Indeed, a stranger cannot fail to
be struck with its metropolitan-like character.  Only forty years ago the
site on which it stands was a mere swamp with a few log huts; now its
population is about the third of a million souls.  For this population a
series of educational institutions of an unusually high character have
been founded, and are in active operation.  The Free Library, which we
visited, is a handsome room, and seems in every way well adapted to the
requirements of a large number of students and readers.  We were
impressed with the quietude which prevailed, notwithstanding that the
room was well filled with readers, most of them apparently of the artisan
class.  The Art Gallery is a free institution, and contains a very fair
collection of good paintings.

The Natural History Museum, which by the way is really a museum of
general science, is a truly magnificent institution.  Very fine
collections are here classified in a manner which, while perfectly lucid
to the student, is also in strict accordance with the views of modern
scientific authorities.  We noticed particularly a good collection of
sedimentary fossils, well preserved and fairly comprehensive.  A fine
meteorolite weighing 30 cwts., a portion of one weighing four tons which
fell in Victoria a few years ago, is a prominent object near the
entrance.  This museum, in common with the Art Gallery and Free Library,
is the resort of vast numbers of students, and it is cheering to be
informed that the working classes largely avail themselves of the
advantages thus provided for them.

As in the other Australian colonies, education here has been taken up in
a vigorous and thorough manner, and the State schools are a credit to the
colony.  Although the population of Victoria is under one million, we
observed in Melbourne a school bearing the inscription No. 1465.  But
with all this liberality and foresight, a strange blot exists in the
educational course, for the study of history is, in deference to the
prejudices of a portion of the population, absolutely interdicted.  It is
impossible, however, that this absurd concession to ignorance can long be
endured.  In leaving Aden on one occasion I began to have doubts as to
whether geography was also excluded, for a young man, son of a well-to-do
squatter, hearing me speak of Suez, asked which end of the canal that
town stood at; and another youth, in passing the island of Candia, said
he always thought _Canada_ was somewhere in America.

Happily, no fears exist in Australia as to the policy of thoroughly
educating the people; on the contrary, it is commonly recognised that the
future prosperity of the State—indeed its very existence—depends upon the
universal diffusion of education.

At the time of our visit party feeling ran very high in connection with
the doings of the “Berry” Ministry, and as extraordinary personalities
were nightly being indulged in by both sides in the House, we went one
evening to hear a “debate.”  The regular business seemed to be conducted
as well as it is at Westminster, but it was curious to see the careless
way in which the members, in brown holland or yellow silk coats, lay
about on the sofas, or lazily lounged off to the table for frequent
draughts of what was said to be iced water.  The shouts, cries, and
interruptions were very unseemly, much worse than anything we had then
experienced, giving us a very low opinion of the representatives of the
people.  One honourable member, in the course of debate, hurled a heavy
tome across the house at the head of one of his opponents with crushing
effect, while another member characterised the smile of the Minister of
Lands as being such as to “sour all the milk in the colony, and to take
the varnish off all the mahogany in the house.”  This compliment the
Minister lightly parried by remarking that anything coming from the son
of a cabbage hawker could not affect him.

The Melbourne legislators evidently do not believe in having “all work
and no play,” they have consequently provided themselves—of course out of
the public purse—with billiard tables, and, with a spirit of rare
generosity and thoughtfulness, have made the parliamentary reporters for
the Press free of the rooms.

With such provision for their comfort, and with handsome salaries paid
them for their services by a grateful country, what wonder that there
should be considerable competition for seats within the walls of the
Victorian House of Parliament? and with what feelings of commiseration
must they regard their brethren of New South Wales, who, when one of
their number recently proposed to imitate the example of Melbourne in the
matter of billiard tables, were reminded, in unmistakable terms by their
exacting constituents, that they were sent to Parliament to work and not
to play!  And what makes the matter harder for the Sydney legislators is
the fact that, unlike their Melbourne friends, they are not paid for
their services.

The question of the payment of Members of Parliament has acquired
considerable interest in England of late, mainly in consequence of Mr.
Chamberlain’s declaration in its favour; and it appears not unlikely that
at no distant date it may be carried into effect.  There are two modes by
which the object in view may be attained;—either by a general charge upon
the Imperial Revenue, or by each constituency paying its own
representative; in either case the amount of salary would be determined
by Parliament; and, if the latter course be adopted, its payment would be
made obligatory.  In Victoria the salaries are paid direct from the
Treasury, and those who have seen how the system works are the least
enthusiastic in its favour.

Time was, when to be a Member of Parliament was looked upon as a certain
way to repair a broken fortune, or to make a new one; but since the days
when George III., of pious memory, taught his Ministers how to corrupt
the Parliament, a seat in that assembly has not been considered to be
pecuniarily advantageous.  But in some of the Australian colonies the
case is different, politics being looked upon, to a great extent, as a
trade or profession, and very largely because of the salary attached to
the position of Members of the Legislature.

One of my customers in Victoria, who had long owed me £50, told me he
would soon be able to discharge his debt as he had been nominated for
Parliament, and would pay me out of his first quarter’s salary!  It is
only fair to say that, although he failed to secure the seat, he
nevertheless paid his debt.

The Houses of Parliament stand on a slight elevation, and though still
unfinished, promise to be a magnificent pile of buildings, of which many
an old-established country, with far greater pretensions than Victoria,
might well be proud.  The Great Hall, a sort of ante-chamber to the
Houses, impressed me as much as any building of the kind I had ever seen.
It is about 180ft. long, by 60ft. wide, and 60ft. high, without
galleries, seats, or anything to detract from its magnificent
proportions.  The whole surface of the walls and roof is covered with a
beautiful enamel-like cement, brilliantly white and polished quite
smooth, the floor being of white marble, and a superb white marble statue
of the Queen in the centre.  The whole effect is startlingly beautiful.
I subsequently went over the Town Hall and Council Chamber, but these are
much inferior to corresponding buildings in Birmingham.  The councillors
wear cocked hats and gold-braided coats, and the aldermen black stuff
gowns or robes.

I have already spoken of the tension in party politics at the time of our
visit.  This was seized upon by the theatrical people, who produced an
adaptation of the burlesque known in England as “Happy Land,” the
principal characters being Mr. Berry—the Premier, the man with the
caustic smile, and another prominent member of the Administration.  On
the morning of the day on which the first representation was to have been
given, a Cabinet Council was hastily summoned, and the question gravely
debated as to whether the safety of the State, or at any rate the
Cabinet, would not be compromised by tolerating the performance.  It was
quickly and unanimously decided to prohibit it, and this decision was
announced.  Such a universal storm of ridicule was thus aroused that the
infatuated Berryites were driven to reconsider their course, ultimately
licensing an emasculated version of the play, with all the political
references erased.  The newspapers, ever alive to the chance of turning a
penny, and showing up an opponent, published the original _in extenso_,
and when the performance began large numbers of the audience had copies
before them.  When an excised passage was reached, the actor or actress
would pause, and, holding up the hand, whisper audibly, “Hush!
prohibited,” giving time for those with copies to read the obnoxious
reference.  For days after people in the street would, on meeting, put up
the finger, and greet each other with “Hush! prohibited.”  The Government
were overwhelmed with ridicule, and were glad to compromise with the
persons they had so injudiciously provoked.

During the summer Melbourne is occasionally visited by what are called
“hot winds.”  They blow from the north, and derive much of their arid
character from coming over the great wastes of the interior.  We were
unlucky enough to experience one of these hot winds, and we subsequently
learned that the shade temperature had reached 117°—as high a point, I
believe, as any that had previously been recorded in the city.  It is no
exaggeration to say that while exposed to the wind it felt like the hot
blast from the cupola of a foundry when iron is being melted.  The
clothes were little or no protection against its scorching influence.
The air was filled with choking clouds of dust, which penetrated
everything and everywhere.  In the evening, however, the wind fell off,
leaving the temperature very high.

The sanitary arrangements in Melbourne are extremely defective, and to my
mind fully justify the writer of the article on the “Black Death,” which
so much startled us on our arrival there.  There is literally no system
of sewerage, the whole drainage of the town running by the side of the
pathways in wide ill-paved channels, crossed by wooden foot bridges.  The
whole runs into the river Yarra.  In heavy rains these channels become
surcharged, and the lower-lying streets are flooded with diluted sewage.
On such an occasion I was crossing one of these gutters, when a
street-sweeper approached, holding his cap in one hand and his broom in
the other, and asked me to remember “an old shipmate, your honour.”  I
soon recognised him as our old friend “Tall and Fat”.  I could not help
looking surprised, whereat he assured me he had found a most excellent
berth as a street-sweeper—that none but gentlemen were engaged in the
“profession,” all being Oxford or Cambridge men—the wages being 7s. per
day.  I asked after his friend “Short and Stout.”  He said he held a
similar appointment at an adjoining corner, and he promised to share my
gratuity with him.

The country between Melbourne and Ballarat is flat and somewhat
uninteresting, but near the latter city it becomes more hilly and
diversified.  Ballarat is a well-built city, containing about 40,000
inhabitants.  A few years ago there were 10,000 more, but in consequence
of the alluvial gold becoming exhausted a considerable exodus took place.
The streets are wide, and have trees on each side; in some there are
trees in the middle as well.  The houses are substantially built of stone
or brick, and altogether it has the air of being a busy and prosperous
place.

We visited one of the gold mines, and as we approached the office saw
three persons coming towards it, one of them carrying a parcel, which
appeared to be heavy.  It proved to be a brick of gold weighing 33 lbs.,
and worth about £1,200, being the result of one week’s working.  We were
shown the various processes of obtaining the gold from the quartz, and
were rather surprised at the somewhat primitive character of the
machinery employed.

                      [Picture: Gold Mine, Ballarat]

Several of the companies with big-sounding names occupy spaces of only
60ft. by 50ft., and yet yield substantial returns.  One such little patch
is part of the Church land, and is called “Hallelujah Claim,” in honour
of the Church.  The total value of gold raised in Australia up to end of
1879 was 275 millions sterling.

One of the prettiest features of this handsome city is a fine sheet of
water called Lake Wendouree.  This lake is about a mile across, and lies
in the crater of an extinct volcano.  The Botanical Gardens are on the
farther side of Wendouree, which has a fine boulevard round each side
leading thereto.  On the lake are several pretty little steamers, which
make frequent excursions.  In the evening they are provided with coloured
lamps, and music and dances may be enjoyed by the passengers.  Ballarat
is less than thirty years old, yet has quite an old-world appearance.  It
is a charming city and well worth a visit, and we were well pleased to
have seen it.

A favourite excursion from Melbourne is to the Black Spur Mountains,
about two days’ drive from the city.  Leaving Melbourne the route passes
through some miles of suburban villa residences with beautiful gardens.
After about ten miles “the bush” is reached, and continues for the
remainder of the journey, relieved here and there by a clearing or by a
little village.  The term “bush” must not be understood as scrub, furze,
etc., but all kinds of uncultivated land, thick forests, and open
country.  A curious feature of colonial life is to see in full operation
the old stage coaches, so long ago discarded in England.  They are
painted a brilliant red, and indeed appear to be the veritable machines
used in the “good old days when George the Third was king.”  They are
frequently drawn by six or more horses, and, true to their ancient
traditions, now and then have a spill, for roadmakers in the Colonies
have the same habit as their English brethren of making short “right
about turns” at the bottom of steep hills.  We drew up at a small wayside
inn, intending to bait the horses, but found it was closed, owing to the
death of the landlord.  This man was a large wine grower, and his
vineyards extended for a considerable distance round his house.  After
passing through many miles of country under vine cultivation we pulled up
for the night at a little village called Healesville, where a very
miscellaneous company sat down to a substantial repast, ending with what
the waiter called a “soafler.”  The light being dim it was difficult to
see what the dish really was, and curiosity being awakened, inquiry
elicited the fact that it was intended for a soufflé.  The hotel being
quite full of visitors, two of our party had to sleep in the parlour on
sofas of the horse-hair order.  The landlord, coming in to see if we were
all right, informed us we could not have our boots cleaned in the
morning, as his man was just then out on a boose.  A colonial friend
travelling with us remarked that it was “awkward when master or man took
to boosing.”  Our friend had previously told us that the landlord was
generally “on that line.”  “You never saw me boosy!” said he.  “_Never_!”
retorted our friend, with peculiar emphasis, which summarily stopped the
discussion.  We were awakened early in the morning by the screams of
laughing jackasses and the crowing of cocks.  Our toilette was performed
somewhat under difficulties, one of us having to use the piano as a
washstand, and another being constrained to go through the same operation
in the open street under the hotel verandah.  Our route now lay over a
steep hill, through a forest of gum trees, the fragrance arising from the
latter in the early morning air being delightfully refreshing.  The main
roads are kept very fairly, a certain number of men being told off for
each section at 9s. per day wages.  The old corduroy roads, formed by
laying trees across the track and filling the interstices with earth, are
being gradually superseded by Macadam.  The men seemed to work in very
leisurely fashion.  We were to have breakfasted at a cottage on the road,
but when we arrived there found that the old lady who kept it had gone to
a ball at some village public-house, several miles away, as also had the
owners of all the other cottages along the route.  A little girl left in
charge told us that after the ball all these good people were going to
the funeral of the wine grower and innkeeper previously mentioned, and
our friend told us they would doubtless stay there to comfort the widow
as long as there was any wine left in the house.  We soon after entered
the region of the big gum trees and of the tree ferns, and a wonderfully
beautiful sight it was.

                          [Picture: A Big Tree]

The whole valley is filled with tree ferns, and the fronds, in many cases
being new, with the sunlight falling upon them, formed a picture not soon
to be forgotten.  Some of the gum trees were enormously large—we saw
several 15ft. in diameter and over 200ft. in height—but these were small
when compared with some found in the less frequented parts.  In the midst
of such surroundings lies the pretty little village of Fernshaw.  When we
were first invited to spend a week at the country house of our friend we
rather unreasonably pictured in our minds an English country or seaside
residence, and anticipated much pleasure in the change from dusty
Melbourne.  Our surprise was great, therefore, when after jolting over
some half-formed roads we came upon a clearing among the gum trees, and
were told that the wooden shanty before us was the Melbourne citizen’s
country house.  We were not disposed, however, to be very critical, for
the sixty miles drive in the mountain air had made us hungry, and we were
quite ready to respond to the invitation to the evening meal.  But our
disillusion was complete upon entering the sitting room and finding that
no provision had been made for the satisfying of our keen appetites.  By
some accident the supplies from Melbourne had not arrived; the rough
table was covered with a couple of towels, and on it was spread a repast
consisting of some bad bread and sour raspberry jam, while the “cup which
cheers but not inebriates” was innocent of milk and sugar.  It was
Saturday evening and we were “out of humanity’s reach,” being many miles
from any source of supply, so had to content ourselves as best we might
with this Spartan fare until the Monday, when our host proposed an
excursion to a distant part, involving the staying a night at an hotel.
We gladly embraced the proposal, and finding that the hotel was a
comfortable one I determined to excuse myself from joining in the
excursion on the following day in order that I might have the opportunity
of recruiting nature’s exhausted powers by an extra meal, a resolution I
had much satisfaction in carrying into effect.  Our friend and his sons
own about one thousand acres, at present covered with trees, with the
exception of a small clearing round the house.  When a piece of land is
taken, the first care is to fence it, which is done with logs, at a cost
of £25 per mile, including the cutting of the logs.  The next step is to
“ring” the trees—that is, to cut a deep groove round them, and so by
killing them prevent any further exhaustion of the soil.  The trees being
dead, vegetation rapidly springs up, and there is soon abundance of food
for cattle.  Clearing the ground of trees and stumps is a very costly
operation, and takes many years to finally accomplish.  The Government
with a view of preventing the accumulation of lands in a few hands,
refuse to sell more than 320 acres to one person, but of course this is
easily evaded.  At the time of our visit the price was £1 per acre,
payable in ten years by equal instalments, a condition being that some
one should reside upon the allotment.  At the end of three years the
owner can obtain from Government a lease of the land, and can then pay up
the full value, which leaves him at liberty to sell if he wishes to do
so.  Of course the building up of large estates is thus encouraged, but
this could, perhaps, be prevented by imposing a tax on every acre.  The
20,000 acre men would soon be compelled to dispose of some of the land
which they hold in the expectation that it will increase in value.  Such
a plan has been proposed, but it naturally met with great opposition from
the landed interest.

                       [Picture: On the Black Spur]

Leaving our friend’s house a drive of a few miles through the bush
brought us to the picturesquely-situated village of Marysville.  This
little village lies in a deep hollow surrounded by fine ranges of
tree-clad hills of extreme beauty.  A pleasant hour’s walk from the
village, under the shade of the tree ferns, took us to the Stephenson
Falls.  The principal fall is 80ft., and the volume of water is unusually
large for an Australian waterfall.  Close to the fall are some
magnificently large tree ferns, and while sitting here enjoying the
lovely view some little birds came flitting about, one of them hopping on
to the shoulder of one of our party, attracted, doubtless, by the aroma
of a fragrant “weed” which at the time he was enjoying.  English visitors
to Australia, especially those in search of health, would find the
conditions existing at Marysville most conducive to their restoration.
The air is bracing, and as before stated, the scenery most delightful.  A
tolerably good accommodation is to be had at the inn, which will
doubtless be improved as the place becomes more widely known.

Returning to Melbourne, we stayed another night at Healesville, arriving
at 7.30, and as we had fared badly during the day we were quite ready for
a substantial dinner, and from our previous experience of the house made
no doubt of obtaining it.  But unfortunately for us, there had been a
chapel tea-party during the afternoon, at which a large force of parsons
had been present.  We had therefore to be content with a tough, woody
steak, a wild duck of ancient and fish-like smell, varied by salted
mutton.  The butter was rancid and full of dead flies, and the bread
appeared to have been cast upon the waters.  We had to go to bed feeling
quite faint, but hoping for a better breakfast.  The beds were good, and
we should have had a good night’s rest, which we sorely needed after the
twig beds of the previous night at the Marysville Hotel, but the
partitions between the rooms being only of half-inch plank everything
passing around us could be heard all too plainly.  A little after
midnight some fellows came in from night-fishing, and going into the room
next ours woke us up by a great noise.  One old donkey was telling the
two younger ones he had had a deal of experience among snakes, killing as
many as eight a day for many years, and that as the result of a series of
experiments during that time he had found an infallible cure for snake
bites.  He had offered his discovery to the Government for £1,000, and
his partner offered to be poisoned by the most deadly snakes to test its
efficacy, but all to no purpose.  So he had determined to let the secret
die with him.  The others asked if the sovereign remedy was to be
swallowed.  “Oh, no,” said the old fellow, “for it is composed of five
deadly poisons.  You must first cut out the wounded part, and rub the
antidote in.  But,” added he, “the secret shall now die with me.”  “But
how about your partner?” asked the others.  “Won’t he tell the secret?”
“Oh no,” was the reply; “he’s safe enough, for he’s dead.”  Then we heard
the voice of the landlord’s pretty daughter telling them it was time to
go to sleep, upon which the old boy growled, “I wonder people can’t go to
sleep without bothering me.”  The rest of the night was made miserable
for us by the two “night fishers,” who, rising long before dawn, went
prowling about the different rooms, ours included, collecting their
tackle for a shooting expedition, but leaving behind them, as we found
afterwards, their percussion caps.

                         [Picture: The Lyre Bird]

We returned to Melbourne by another route, affording us some fine views
of the plains called Yarra Flats, and the Marysville Hills in the far
distance.



CHAPTER IV.


At the end of January we left Melbourne for a few weeks’ tour in
Tasmania, taking steamer from the wharf on the Yarra Yarra, the river
upon which the capital of Victoria is situated.

The banks of the Yarra have been selected as the scene of the operations
of all the most offensive trades in the colony—the bone boilers, tanners,
fellmongers, candle makers, chemical manure makers, glue manufacturers,
etc., in addition to which all the sewage which is not left on the
surface of the streets is run into it.  The river is very narrow, the
fall to the sea extremely slight, and the traffic great, hence at every
revolution of the paddle-wheel or screw-propeller the abominations from
the depths below are stirred up and mingled with those coming from the
before-named savoury factories, forming a more horrible compound than
ever proceeded from witches’ cauldron.  In this one respect the New World
has certainly shot far ahead of the old, for even the memory of ancient
Cologne is made savoury to the nostrils by this colonial stench.

Our friends came to say good-bye, and brought quite a sack of peaches and
apricots, which were very acceptable during the voyage.  If there were on
board any roysterers or betting men they had no opportunity for
displaying their peculiarities.  Until we reached the entrance to the
river Tamar almost every person on board was ill, for Bass’s Straits is
notorious for its disagreeable cross seas.

Launceston is forty miles up the river, and is the capital of the county
of Cornwall, as in England.  The scenery along the river banks is very
beautiful, and is so exactly like the Truro river at home that it is
difficult to believe we are out of England.  The river is winding and
broad, and the shores slope gently down from high ground covered with
trees.  Here and there are bright green meadows and villages and
scattered farmsteads and churches.  I saw nothing in Victoria to compare
with it.

Launceston, a quiet city of 10,000 inhabitants, is surrounded by hills.
Looking down upon it, one is reminded of Florence from Fiesole, the
beautiful climate and clear air being quite Italian, with the lovely
Tamar winding its circuitous route for miles away.  We drove out towards
a place called the “Devil’s Punch Bowl,” walking the last mile through a
beautiful wood down a hill, with firs, gum trees, etc., in abundance,
with here and there delightful glimpses of green glades.  The air was
filled with the sounds of the tree locusts and the tremendous hissing
noise of the cicadas, the sun shining through the trees and producing a
temperature and light which were simply perfect.  The only drawback is
the presence of snakes, which, our driver said, are very abundant here.
The scene is truly English.  At the bottom of the little wooded valley we
came upon an old wooden shanty, where we tried to get a glass of milk,
but there was no one at home.  Presently an old man appeared, driving
cows.  We asked him for milk—he had none, but gave us water, and offered
raw eggs.  My companion took two, and said he liked them, but I am sure
he liked the first best.  The old man was seventy-three years of age, and
lived there alone, sleeping on a door covered with an opossum rug.  He
told us his master died there close by the bee-hives a few weeks ago,
“so,” said he, “I put the bees in deep mourning, or they would all have
left.”

I wrote my notes sitting on a gatepost, out of the way of snakes; the
moon shone brightly, and in the distance I could hear the church bells,
mingled with the voices of children, the tinkling of cowbells, and
barking of dogs.

The shops close at six o’clock, but the public-houses of course remain
open.  I observed a small fruit-shop, a mere shanty, with the sign of
“Pomona’s Temple,” and a hairdresser’s saloon with the high-sounding name
of “Tonsorial Palace,” while a democratic opponent in the same street,
with a proud humility, called his place of business a “Barber’s Shop.”

Strolling in the town one evening I talked with a policeman, who was an
almost exact counterpart of Count Moltke.  He had just received his new
regulation helmet, and did not like it at all: it was hard and heavy.  He
was very pleased to hear we liked Tasmania better than Victoria.  “Ah,”
said he, “you will find real hospitality here; here everybody helps
everybody, but in Melbourne everybody helps himself, and the bobby or
somebody catches the hindmost.”  He said he had been a policeman for
twenty years, and, “although I say it as shouldn’t, I will say for the
Launceston police, they are the most civillest, honestest body of
policemen going,” with which I quite agreed.

Another beautiful ride is to the Cora Linn, seven miles from Launceston.
On one side of the road, stretching almost the whole distance, is a hedge
of sweetbriar, giving forth delicious perfume.  It is difficult to get
accustomed to the reversal of the seasons; here in February the farmers
are busy cutting and saving their corn, but with no fear of rain to spoil
their harvest, as in England.  A bridge crosses the Linn, and a
cataract-like stream tumbles down over rocks, very much like the Lynn at
Lynmouth.  Below the bridge is a deep basin, and all around are numbers
of queer trees, young and old, with many burnt-out trunks black as
negroes, with white spots in them like eyes.  The trees and shrubs are
full of _cicadas_ making a great noise.

Leaving Launceston, we drove to Falmouth, ninety miles away.  The road
lies through a beautifully-wooded country; indeed, the entire ride is
just like going through a park in England.  We saw lots of magpies, very
much larger than ours, but quite as mischievous.  A gentleman told us a
person once asked him to change a sovereign, which he did, and then
looked for the sovereign, but it could not be seen.  Presently, looking
up, he saw Master Mag in a shrub, with one eye shut, his head on one
side, and standing on one leg, with the piece of gold in his mouth.

Our first night’s stopping-place was at Stoney Creek, where there is a
comfortable hotel, just like a private house, with only one other house
for miles around.  Near to the hotel flows the River Esk, a black,
silent, swiftly-flowing and suicidal-looking stream, suggestive in its
motion of some huge black snake, of which there are many in the
neighbourhood.  In crossing a field to look at the river our clothes
became covered with burrs and spines from the prickly pear.  We sat down
on a grassy mound to watch the flowing of the river, but had quickly to
move, as we found ourselves in the midst of a colony of great ants.  The
following verses were written on the occasion by one of my companions:

                [Picture: THE DOCTOR CONTEMPLATES—A POEM]

                                 THOU AND I.

    Thou art in happy England
       With peace, content, and joy,
    And there no poisonous reptiles
       Thy comfort can destroy;
    No hissing sound the startled ear
       With fear of death awakes—
    Thou art in happy England,
       I, in the land of snakes.

    About thy household duties
       Serenely thou canst go,
    No fear of fierce tarantulas
       Or scorpion brings thee woe;
    And day by day flows calmly on,
       And sleep wings through the night—
    Thou art in happy England,
       I, where mosquitos bite.

    Thou hast the trusty faithful dog,
       The quiet, harmless cat,
    But I the fierce Tasmanian D—,
       Opossum, and wombat;
    Familiar objects greet thy sight,
       Here all is strange and new—
    Thou art in happy England,
       I, with the kangaroo.

    Thou hast the blithe canary,
       The robin chirps to thee,
    While here the magpies chatter
       And rail from every tree;
    Bright parrots glint beneath the sun,
       And shriek their hideous song—
    Thou art in happy England,
       I, wattle-birds among.

    Thou canst recline in any place,
       And watch the moments pass,
    Here burrs and prickles fill the clothes
       While lying on the grass,
    They stick into the flesh, and sting
       Like gnat, or wasp, or bee—
    But thou in happy England
       From all such plagues art free.

    Hurrah for happy England,
       For all the folk at home!
    From hill and dale resounds the cry,
       No matter where we roam.
    Rare scenes of beauty greet the sight,
       The balmy air is sweet,
    But still I sigh for England
       Where thou and I shall meet.

    DR. L—.

The landlady was a widow, her husband having recently died.  Her son had
just returned from sea, where he had been for twelve years.  He had been
wrecked three times, and the last time should have given him enough of
the sea for the rest of his life.  It was in the ship “Euxine,” taking
3,000 tons of coal to the Mauritius.  She took fire off the Cape of Good
Hope in the midst of a terrific storm.  The captain was washed overboard
and drowned; a sailor was also swept away, and while only twenty feet
from the ship was attacked by a flock of albatrosses, right in sight of
his comrades.  He fought with them, but all in vain, and the wretches
literally pulled him in pieces with their strong bills in a very few
minutes.  The crew got out the boats, but of course they were in a bad
state.  It was, however, a choice between burning and drowning, so they
put off, preferring to risk the latter.  After two or three days, two of
the boats were picked up, but the third was out for eleven days.  The
poor wretches on board had nothing whatever to eat, and in their
extremity were driven to cast lots which among them should die.  One
unhappy man was disposed of, and in two hours after a ship came in sight
and picked them up.

A lovely drive through Epping Forest brought us to Avoca, where “the
bright waters meet,” the North and South Esk uniting here.  Our route lay
along a fine road, through avenues of gum trees, wattles (acacias),
cultivated for their bark, the sweetbriars and hawthorns scenting the air
delightfully.  We saw a splendid eagle, and large numbers of parrots,
magpies, and hawks.

                             [Picture: Avoca]

On our way we passed many residences of great woolgrowers, owning as much
as 20,000 acres of land each, but living, for the most part, in England,
their affairs in the Colony being managed by agents.  They keep only one
man on each 5,000 acres.  There is scarcely any agriculture, although the
land is very suitable, but being taken up in this way, there is no room
for population to increase, and the people have to emigrate.

At Fingal we stopped at an hotel, kept by an Irishman married to a
Jewess.  They presided at either end of the table, and kept us short of
food; indeed, I never saw a small joint go so far before.  Next day we
left the hotel, still hungry, although the charges were quite as high as
those at the Great Western Hotel, Paddington.

Soon after leaving Fingal we saw something by the roadside which looked
very like a snake, and on examining it we found it was one—a black snake,
4ft. 6in. long.  It lay perfectly still, and presently we found it was
dead; but the sensation was not pleasant.  A gentleman at the hotel told
us he had killed four the night previously, and doubtless this was one of
them.

                          [Picture: St. Mary’s]

After passing through the charming village of St. Mary’s, embowered in
trees, we entered a lovely avenue, two miles in length, filled with
beautiful flowers and ferns, the air laden with scents from the gum and
other trees, and on emerging came upon St. Mary’s Pass.  This is an
immense gorge, four miles long, filled with fine trees, the road, which
is remarkably good, being cut in the side of the cliff by convicts in the
old days of Van Diemen’s Land.  It winds down the valley to the sea at
Falmouth, and on either side rise lofty hills, while the valley below is
1,000 feet deep, and filled with immense trees of various kinds,
including the tree fern.  I have seen most of the passes and valleys in
the Tyrol, but have never seen one to excel this in grandeur or beauty.

                        [Picture: Falmouth Hotel]

In the map the word “Falmouth” was printed in rather large letters, so we
expected to find a somewhat considerable place.  At the head of the pass
we were told the township lay between the foot of the hill and the sea.
On getting down the hill we could plainly view the sea and the
intervening land, but no town was visible.  Inquiring of some little boys
the way to Falmouth, they directed us away to the right.  We went on,
feeling assured we were going wrong; and presently, meeting a gentleman,
we inquired again, when he told us to retrace our course, to go through
an ordinary field gate, and that we should then get to Falmouth in three
minutes!  We told him that the little boys had directed us the other way,
but he said we should have asked for “Hotel.”  The town of Falmouth,
where the boys lived, consisted of two or three houses, and was a mile
from the hotel.  On exploring the place next day we were informed that
fifty years before it was much more important than now.  Miles of streets
were marked out, but were grass-grown, and there were not more than a
dozen houses in the place, all built of wood, and of one storey in
height.  The burying-place for the district is about a mile away, on the
open common, each grave being surrounded with stakes, with no wall or
fence enclosing the whole.  It was a melancholy sight, reminding me
strongly of the graves on the battlefields of the Franco-German war.

                   [Picture: Burial-Place at Falmouth]

The beach and sands are very fine, like those of my native county.  The
bathing is delightful, but you must keep a sharp look out for sharks.
One morning, however, while bathing, we stood in much greater danger from
the mad folly of some Cockneys who had recently come to the hotel.  We
had been bathing in an arm of the sea, the point beyond which it was not
safe being marked by a stake driven into the sand.  Between our bathing
place and the hotel was a high sand bank, screening us from sight, the
stake being visible from the verandah of the hotel.  After dressing, we
were leisurely walking up the sandbank towards the hotel, when we were
startled by a bullet passing between our heads and lodging in the sand
behind us!  We threw up our towels and shouted, and then saw the Cockney
sportsman standing on the platform under the verandah, from whence he had
been aiming at the stake in the sand with his rifle for the past half
hour.  On examination we found the sand riddled with bullets, not 50ft.
from where we had been bathing.  The little burying ground possessed a
new significance in our eyes after this incident.  We found some
beautiful sea-shells during a delightful walk along the beach towards
Swansea, and on our return called upon the gentleman who put us right for
Falmouth on our arrival.  He is a farmer from near Oxford, and had been
here seven or eight years, finding it a terribly lonely place.  Recently
his nine children and his servants took the measles, and his wife being
ill, he had to nurse them all.  When they got well his wife sickened and
died, leaving him with seven daughters and two sons, the eldest being
only fourteen years old.  The nearest doctor lived more than thirty miles
away.

In order to get to Hobart Town, we had to retrace our steps some sixty
miles, as there is only one road on this side of the island.  We stayed a
night at Avoca, a charming place, but the roads were a foot deep in dust.
Although the climate is so fine, and everything favours the growth of
fruit, there is very little grown.  It is alleged that fruit trees do not
prosper, but I had ample evidence that the cause is to be found in the
indifference or laziness of the people.  Strolling in the neighbourhood
of the village, we came upon a beautiful orchard, and were admiring the
large, ripe plums, when a voice behind said, “Walk in, gentlemen, and
help yourselves.”  The speaker was a hearty old man, who had lived here
forty-six years.  He came from Ledbury, and was much interested in
hearing about Birmingham.  He told us that the day before he left England
he walked from Ledbury to Birmingham to see the Nelson statue in the Bull
Ring.

The old man told us a snake story, which strikingly illustrates the
vitality of these reptiles.  A short time previously he and his son went
across a neighbouring mountain on horseback to visit one of their farms.
Going “single file” between the trees, the son, who was leading, suddenly
called out to his father, “Look out, there’s a snake,” and at the same
instant his horse started.  The old gentleman got off, and finding it was
a “carpet snake,”—one of the most venomous species—caught up a stick, and
aimed a blow at it.  The stick however was rotten, and broke without
hurting the reptile, which now prepared to strike; but the old man
managed to get his heel upon its head, and ground it into the earth; and
having, as he thought, killed it, tied a piece of string around its
middle, and bending a wattle tree down, attached the end of the string to
one of the branches, and then released the tree.  They thought no more of
the matter until three days after, when two of his men, returning from
his farm with a cart, were seen by their master dragging a snake behind
the cart.  He asked them where they caught it; they explained that while
coming down the hill side, their attention was arrested by a snake in a
tree clashing towards them, but unable to release itself.  On
examination, they found it was tied up!  “So that after all,” said the
old man, “it was only scotched, not killed.”

A fellow-traveller on the coach told us that he was coming from the tin
mines near Mount Bischoff, and that for some months he and his partner
had slept in hammocks slung from trees.  One night, just as he was going
to sleep, something dropped from the tree across his body.  He took it in
his hand, and finding it was a snake, he flung it from him, when it
alighted on his companion.  Luckily, both escaped unhurt.  He also told
me of the experience of a friend of his, a Government surveyor, who was
frequently in the woods for weeks together, with one or two men.  This
gentleman slept in a hammock suspended from trees.  The hammock was in
reality a sack, hanging some feet from the ground, into which he got at
night.  One night he had retired as usual, and being very wearied, did
not at once notice that there was independent movement at his feet.  Very
soon, however, he realised the fact that a snake had gone to bed before
him, and was coiling itself round his legs.  The gentleman quickly got
out, unhurt, and soon killed the snake.

I also read in a colonial paper another account of a night adventure with
a snake.  A lady had retired to rest, and was fast asleep; the weather
being very hot, one of her arms was outside the clothes, and during the
night she was awakened by feeling something trying to force its way
between her arm and her side; she quickly realised the situation, and
without moving, tightly pressed her arm against her body and prevented
the venomous reptile from getting between, when presently it glided over
her shoulder and fell on the floor with a thud.  She was soon out of bed
at the other end, and calling for help and a light the snake was quickly
despatched.

The doctor in this place has charge of a district sixty miles in
diameter, and always expects his fees before leaving his house; but
although he has so large a district, I question if he makes his fortune,
for although acres are many, people are few, and the salubrity of the
climate does not favour the medical profession.

The main road between Launceston and Hobart is struck at Willis’s Corner,
a few miles from Campbelltown—the principal town in the interior of the
island.  There is a station here on the main-line railway.  The gauge of
the line is thirty-nine inches, I think.

Campbelltown is a straggling place, with streets enough laid out for a
city, but with only few houses, and it is not likely many more will be
built, as the railway is expected to take away its trade, which depends
mainly upon the coach traffic.  The streets are about one hundred and
twenty feet wide, which is greatly in excess of all requirements, and
causes the traffic to run in ruts, instead of being distributed over the
roadway, giving a desolate appearance to the whole place.  As a rule, the
Tasmanian roads are very good, having been made in the old days by
convict labour, but you must not venture to mention the word “convict;”
the people all speak of these public works as having been executed by
Government.  Having had so much done for them by the Government, the
Tasmanian people are lacking in energy, and are much too prone to rely
upon outside help; and yet when Melbourne people come over to invest
capital in mines and other industries, the cry is that the strangers are
taking all the money out of the country.  As I have said, the farms are
of a great size, but the number of men engaged are but few.  The farmers
have two great enemies—the thistle and the rabbit.  It is said the former
was introduced into the colonies by a patriotic Scotchman, to remind him
of his bonnie Scotland, the rabbit being introduced for the purpose of
sport; but, like our old friend the sparrow, they have so increased as to
be the cause of serious loss, and are the subjects of special
legislation.  Some landowners spend many thousands of pounds in putting
walls around their estates to keep the rabbits out.

From Campbelltown to Hobart is seventy-six miles, and we rode the whole
distance in a single day.  The country is very beautiful, and towards the
end of the journey we had fine mountain and river scenery.  The Derwent
is a splendid river, running through a lovely country, sometimes through
rich pasture lands and hop gardens, and at other times between high
precipices and rugged country.

Mount Wellington is a remarkably fine mountain of 4,000 feet in height,
and is topped with snow for a considerable portion of the winter.

                  [Picture: Summit of Mount Wellington]

Villages are very scarce on the road, and shops few, so the inhabitants
get most of their requirements from hawkers, who visit all parts of the
island with horses and vans, carrying all kinds of goods.  We passed
several with their wares spread out on the ground.  Our coachman told us
rather a good story of two of these “merchants,” as they are usually
called.  These men travelled the road together as partners, having a
standing agreement between them that only one should get drunk at a time,
so that they were not unfrequently seen riding, one of them as drunk as a
lord or a fiddler, while the other was perfectly sober, but merry.  One
day, however, they broke the rule, and both got drunk together, letting
their horse go just as it liked.  Unhappily, as they were turning a
corner in the road, a coach came bowling along and ran into them,
breaking their van and many of their bones, besides spoiling most of
their stock-in-trade.  The coachman could not tell us if the accident had
the effect of making the men teetotallers.

              [Picture: View in the Public Gardens, Hobart]

Hobart (as Hobart Town is now called) is most beautifully situated, with
extensive public gardens, charmingly laid out, and having the advantage
of an abundance of water from the River Derwent.  The Governor’s house is
admirably placed, commanding extensive views of river and mountain
scenery.  The citizens are exceedingly hospitable, and we were not long
at the hotel before we were visited by a gentleman who informed us he had
entered our names on the books of the principal club, and also invited us
to a grand representation of “Martha.”  There are many charming
excursions in the neighbourhood of Hobart.  One of the most beautiful is
to New Norfolk, about two and a half hours’ steam up the Derwent river.
As we approach New Norfolk the river gets very narrow, and we pass
through a part called “Hell Gates,” having steep lofty cliffs on one
side, and a beautiful tongue of land with trees and lovely green grass on
the other.  The name I thought particularly ill chosen.

The village of New Norfolk is prettily situated among the hills, with the
lovely Derwentwater at its feet.  Its principal industry is the growing
of hops.  We went into the gardens, and saw the people busily picking the
hops, which were very fine.

Another beautiful excursion is to Fern Tree Valley, a lovely spot with a
fine avenue of tree ferns, and with many immense gum trees in the
surrounding woods.

There being no steamer to Sydney or Melbourne for a week, we drove over
the road to Launceston, 120 miles distant.  Soon after leaving Hobart we
crossed the River Jordan, passed through Jericho, near to Jerusalem,
stopping at Bagdad for breakfast.

Although February had just gone, the weather was still intensely hot.
The harvest was nearly over, and the wheat looked beautiful.  I saw some
eight feet high, and a person told me he had frequently seen it grow as
high as ten feet.  Lunching at Melton Mowbray, we came on to Oatlands,
driving the last few miles by moonlight, the night being very cool.

At Oatlands is a large gaol, where in old times a number of England’s
sons were confined, many of them having been sent there for political
“offences,” which in our happier times have conducted the best of
Englishmen to the Council Board at Windsor.  The gaol is now almost
untenanted.  In passing along we saw the ruins of many of the miserable
old barracks, where the convicts used to live.  Everything looks half
finished, and I have scarcely seen one window blind furnished with cords
for winding; they roll them up and pin them, consequently the blind is
full of pin holes.  We stopped a night at the best hotel in Campbelltown,
a really well-appointed house; but on trying to open the front door, the
knob came off in my hand!  We greatly enjoyed our three weeks’ stay in
Tasmania; in many respects it is more interesting than the mainland,
while the climate is much more agreeable to Englishmen.  A pleasant
passage of twenty hours brought us to Melbourne again, and the weather
being still very hot, we decided to go on to Sydney by steamer.

                  [Picture: Our Waiter at Campbelltown]



CHAPTER V.


The run down Hobson’s Bay to Port Philip Heads takes about four hours,
and just inside the mouth of the harbour are two little watering-places,
much frequented by the citizens of Melbourne.

Presently we come to a curious feature in the water.  The currents of the
bay and those of the open sea meet, and produce at their junction the
phenomenon locally known as “The Rip.”  All at once, as the steamer comes
out of the bay, we pass from smooth water into the regular waves of the
sea; there is almost a wall between, and as the vessel passes through it
a rushing sound is heard, the vessel instantly beginning to roll and
pitch.  In rough weather passing through “The Rip” is quite exciting, the
water frequently rushing over the decks.

                        [Picture: Sydney Harbour]

After a voyage of a little more than two days, we arrived outside the
heads of Port Jackson or Sydney Harbour.  Everyone has heard of the
extreme beauty of this glorious harbour; indeed if the visitor stays a
few days in the city he is likely to hear of it many times.  The entrance
is about a mile in width, between bold cliffs 250 feet in height.  It has
a coast line of more than 100 miles, and is full of beautiful creeks and
bays, with their banks finely wooded to the water’s edge, and having
numerous handsome villas picturesquely placed upon every point of
vantage, the city being situated at the head of the bay.  The old town of
Sydney is very badly laid out, with narrow, crooked streets, while the
pavements and roads are most execrable, and the drainage and water supply
are as bad as they can well be.  The public buildings, and the modern
portion of the city, are very fine, the post-office in particular being a
very handsome edifice, infinitely superior to the new post-office in
Birmingham; but then the citizens of Sydney built their own, while the
citizens of Birmingham were not consulted, and had to accept what the
London architect was graciously pleased to bestow.

Next to the harbour, the public gardens of Sydney form its principal
attraction.  The Botanical Gardens are exceedingly fine, and contain a
magnificent collection of almost every known tree that will stand the
climate.  A special feature is the Norfolk Island pine, which grows to a
great height, perfectly straight, and with very regular branches.  The
gardens are finely situated on undulating ground, sloping down to the
harbour, which is sufficiently deep 200 yards off to float men-of-war.
From these gardens a fine view of the Governor’s house and of other parts
of the city is obtained.  There is also a beautiful view from the
Observatory Hill, which the Sydney people are justly proud of, for it can
scarcely be equalled in any other part of the world.  The harbour, with
its numerous islands, lies spread out before the eyes, while the greatest
animation is given to the scene by the large number of little steamers,
yachts, and sail-boats continually flitting about, for the youth of
Sydney are truly British in their love of the water.  While we were
admiring this panorama one morning, an old gentleman, observing we were
strangers, pointed out the various objects of interest.  Presently one of
our party observing a strange cloud in the hitherto cloudless sky, called
the old man’s attention to it.  At first he thought it was a bush fire
away to the south, but in a minute he said, “Come on, we had better get
under shelter, for it is a ‘southerly buster!’”

A “southerly buster” is one of the institutions of Sydney, and is a
hurricane of wind: which comes up suddenly from the south, bringing
clouds of dust from the brickfields lying on that side of the city.  We
had long been wishing to see a genuine example, and here it was with a
vengeance.  In less time than it takes to describe, the whole city and
harbour were completely obscured by a tremendous cloud of dust, blown on
at a great pace, roaring like a furnace, and carrying before it sticks,
paper, and even small gravel, which strike with the force of hailstones.
During the twenty minutes which the hurricane lasts umbrellas are
perfectly useless, and every person and thing becomes completely covered
with dust.  Having experienced the “buster” once, we have no desire for a
repetition.

Sydney is fortunate in possessing almost inexhaustible supplies of
oysters, and the old gentleman referred to above told us they sometimes
grew on trees!  There is a tree called the Mangrove, which grows very
plentifully on the banks of the Parramatta river; sometimes the water is
very high for days together, and the oyster spawn gets fixed in the mud
on the branches, and so they grow and are gathered in their season.

One of the most delightful excursions from Sydney is to the top of the
Blue Mountains, where there are several villages and some exceedingly
fine and interesting scenery.  The summit of the mountains is about
3,500ft. above sea-level, and is seventy miles from Sydney, being reached
by a picturesque zigzag railway.  In the old convict days it was commonly
supposed by the prisoners that China lay on the other side of the Blue
Mountain range, and many of the wretched men lost their lives in the
jungle in trying to escape to the celestial country; one party succeeded
in getting to a considerable distance before the guard overtook them, and
one of them was found to have in his possession an engraving of a
compass, by which he expected to steer his way!

The railway from Sydney passes many charming villages and extensive
orange groves, crossing the River Nepean by a handsome iron bridge.

Some of the hotels on the mountain are of a very primitive character.
One of those in which we stayed was a single-storied building, with
bed-rooms opening into the yard.  The house was built of planks, and the
partitions were not very thick.  I found that the landlord was the
brother of an English tradesman with whom I do business.  They had not
heard of one another for forty years, which was a suspicious
circumstance, considering the history of the colony.

                   [Picture: Cottage at Mount Victoria]

In the fireplace of our sitting room we found a “gin” set for rats, which
during the night were quite lively.  One morning we observed that our
waiter seemed to be very anxious for us to finish our breakfast.
Presently he asked if we had finished with the coffee-pot, saying that
all the others had been sent to be mended, and as he had a rather
particular couple in the next room, he did not like to take in the coffee
in a tea-pot!

At Mount Victoria, the highest village on the mountain, there are good
State schools, to which the children come for twenty-five miles round
from the villages along the railway.  Both schools and railways in New
South Wales belong to the State, and the schoolchildren are allowed to
ride free by all trains.  Even the goods trains have carriages attached
for the use of the children, and the school hours are arranged to enable
them to take advantage of the trains.  Mount Victoria is a beautiful
village, where many of the wealthy citizens of Sydney have charming
residences.  It has quite an alpine appearance with its wooden houses and
tree-clad hills.  In the neighbourhood are many delightful places, to
which excursions are made; one of the most interesting is to a waterfall
called “Govett’s Leap.”  The road is a very rough one, and goes through
the forest, in which are numbers of large ant-hills more than 5ft. in
height, and formed of clay, which has become so hard that a stick makes
no impression upon them.  The entrances for the little creatures are very
narrow cracks, too narrow for any of their enemies to get through.
Sometimes, however, a creature called the “iguana” manages to make its
way inside, when he always clears the entire colony out.

                    [Picture: The Weatherboard Falls]

After a few miles’ drive along an almost level road, we come suddenly
upon the edge of a precipice nearly 1,000 feet deep, down which the
stream falls forming the waterfall.  The “leap” is about 500 feet, and
almost all the water becomes spray before it reaches the bottom, its
appearance reminding us of the Staubbach Falls at Lauterbrunnen.

From the precipice a fine view is obtained for many miles round.  The
country is broken up into deep ravines or wide gullies, stretching as far
as the eye can reach, and all wooded, while, except the little waterfall,
not a drop of water is to be seen.

On the other side of Mount Victoria, towards Bathurst, is another curious
zigzag railway, at the foot of which is the village of Lithgow, the seat
of iron and coal industries.  At present the works are of a very
primitive character, but I have no doubt that at no distant date they
will assume important proportions.

                    [Picture: Descent to Hartley Vale]

Outside our hotel door the landlord kept his talking parrot, which was
always saying to the passers-by, “a bucket of beer, a bucket of beer.”
There was a retired missionary staying at the hotel with his wife, and
one day the old lady told me that she thought they might have taught the
poor thing something “more Christian.”

One evening some drovers from Bathurst camped for the night near to the
hotel; they put their cattle into a field, and having taken their tents
from the packhorses, soon made themselves comfortable round their
camp-fires, the whole scene being very picturesque and gipsy-like.

This used to be the old coach-road before the railway was opened, and
many a coach has been stopped and robbed by gangs of escaped convicts
called bushrangers.  People were easily frightened in those days.  A
woman coming out of a cottage at night has been known to stop a coach,
and snapping the spring of an old candlestick has ordered the passengers
to “bail up” and to throw the mail-bags out, which being done under
terror of the supposed pistol, she commanded them to drive on; the
coachman of course supposing there was a gang of ruffians lying in wait.

Bushrangers are not yet a thing of the past, for while we were in Sydney
four were sentenced to death for the murder of a policeman, who was one
of a party sent in pursuit of the gang.

Hard by our hotel is a solitary graveyard, where lie the bodies of many
convicts who died while confined in a neighbouring stockade in the old
transportation days.  A more desolate and melancholy place it would be
impossible to imagine.  Some of the public-houses have queer mottoes on
their sign boards.  We observed three not far apart having these
inscriptions: “Labour in Vain,” “The Leisure Hour,” “The Rag and Famish.”
A favourite drink amongst the people is sarsaparilla, which is generally
mentioned on the sign along with the beer.

There are two kinds of birds in the woods about Mount Victoria which make
a great noise at night; one is called the “Great Goat Sucker,” and
continually cries “more pork, more pork”; while the other, called the
“Laughing Jackass,” or the great kingfisher, makes night hideous by its
insane laughter; in the day-time, however, it performs a very useful
service, in waging perpetual war against the snakes.

                     [Picture: The Laughing Jackass]

The ants in Australia are rather formidable creatures.  Some of them are
more than an inch in length, and one kind, called the “bull-dog,” is very
fierce, and will attack anything; he can run backwards or forwards with
equal facility, and never turns his back to the foe.  Their hills are
very large, and a slight tap brings numbers of them out at once, and
unless you want to be well punished, you had better leave them quickly,
for their bite is something to be remembered.  One morning while on a
walk we observed two boys “prodding” an ant-hill; but by the time we had
come up to them we found them otherwise engaged, for the “bulldogs” had
got up their clothes and were causing the boys to jump about as though
they were “possessed;” occasionally they would pause and rub their legs
with great devotion; and altogether it was apparent they felt their
position keenly.  As we passed them they gave us a ghastly smile, and I
think they will let “sleeping bull-dogs lie” in the future.

                     [Picture: The Author Sketching]

During one of my visits to Sydney the political situation was this:—Two
questions were before the Parliament and country—viz., an Amended
Education Act, and an Excise Act, by which latter it was proposed to put
a tax upon colonial beer.

“It happens that a vacancy has occurred in an important constituency, and
as these questions are greatly agitating the whole country, the election
is looked forward to with great interest as being a sort of test of the
public sentiment.  The Government candidate of course supports the two
measures above referred to, while the opposition candidate is adverse to
both, the latter being the largest brewer in the Colony, (which of course
accounts for his opposing the excise duty on beer) and, what is not
unusual in the case of brewers, he is a decided Churchman, and supporter
of what he calls ‘religious education.’  The whole strength of the
clergy, publicans, bishops, loafers, avowed atheists, Roman Catholic
archbishop, priests, and Irish is most heartily with the Church-loving,
beer-brewing candidate, who is socially much liked, and very strong.  His
opponent is supported by the whole Liberal party, by large numbers of the
Churchmen, and by a few Catholics.  The Amended Education Act simply
provides that whereas at present State aid is given to denominational
schools it shall now be withdrawn.  The Bible is not read in the schools,
but the lesson books of the Irish National Schools are used.  Facilities
are offered to the various denominations to give religious instruction to
the children in the State schools.  The bishop and clergy of the Church
of England and the Roman Catholic priests unite heartily with the beer
interest (as usual), the proposal to tax the beer coming in very
opportunely to enlist the sympathies and votes of the idle, drunken,
venal, and dissolute portion of the community.  The bishop takes an
opportunity of stating publicly how much he is in favour of temperance,
and his clergy follow suit; the Catholic clergy do the same, and in the
evenings clergy of both religious denominations appear at public meetings
in support of the brewer!  The publicans and their followers are relieved
from saying anything about the tax on beer by the existence of the
education question, which they heartily oppose, thus avoiding the subject
in which they have a selfish interest; so it comes to this—Bible says to
beer, ‘I’ll support you, although it is rather inconvenient, for am I not
pledged to temperance?’  Beer says to Bible, ‘I’ll support you with all
the strength of my lungs, rendered all the noisier by copious draughts of
untaxed beer; beer and Bible, Bible and beer for ever!’

“The Roman Catholic clergy anathematise Protestants of all kinds and
classes, including the Church of England, but the latter joins hands with
the Roman Catholics and the beer party to gain its ends, the said ends
being the same with both Churches—viz., the triumph of priestly rule and
domination.”

The answer of the constituency, applauded throughout the length and
breadth of the land, was to return the Liberal candidate by a majority of
two to one.

In reference to this election the _Sydney Morning Herald_ said—“Many of
the advocates for the extension and maintenance of the denominational
schools lay great stress upon the doctrine that it is not just to deny
denominational schools to those who prefer them—that if any citizen pays
the education tax he ought to have the sort of education provided for his
child that he most desires, and that it is a wrong-doing to his
conscience if this claim is not regarded.  It is certainly somewhat
singular that the few advocates of this line of argument are to be found
in the ranks of the two great churches, which, having been national
churches, have, to say the least, not distinguished themselves by
defending the rights of conscience.  In England the march of religious
liberty has done much to undo Church-inspired legislation against those
outside the pale of the Church; and that being achieved it sounds
strangely to hear the ‘conscience’ argument against a uniform treatment
of all citizens proceed from a quarter which has not been the home of the
rights of conscience.”

             [Picture: A Bullock Team on the Blue Mountains]

Before leaving Sydney it may be well to describe an overland ride I made
from Sydney to Melbourne _viâ_ Wagga Wagga and Albury, at a time previous
to the completion of the through railway.

Leaving Sydney by the Pullman train at six in the evening, Wagga Wagga is
reached about ten next morning: During the night we ascended 2,200ft.  A
large extent of the country is cleared, and, being New Year’s Day, it was
rather strange to our English eyes to see the wheat cut and stacked, and
harvesting operations going on.

                           [Picture: Bush Hut]

The country through which our track passes is famous for its sheep runs
and for the high quality of the wool produced in it.  Here and there in
the bush are occasional labourers’ cottages, wretched, uncomfortable
looking buildings, constructed of rough planks covered with bark.  The
children we saw had a very uncared-for look.

Wagga Wagga (pronounced Wogga Wogga) covers a large extent of ground, but
at present the number of houses is few, most of them, however, being well
built.  From this place we hired a buggy and pair of horses to take us to
Albury, a distance of some seventy to eighty miles, the charge for which,
including the services of a smart, bright boy as driver, was £7.
Immediately on leaving Wagga we got into the “bush” country, and during
the afternoon passed some large stock “stations.”  The land appears to be
much more fertile than in the neighbourhood of Sydney, with greater depth
of soil.  We put up for the night at Jerra Jerra, a place consisting of
two or three wood shanties, one of them being the hotel, and left at 6.30
next morning, taking breakfast at a somewhat larger group of wood huts
called Germanton.  Every driver through the “bush” makes his own track
among the trees, and ours was no exception to the rule; he made long
detours at intervals, only coming out into the regular road when a creek
had to be crossed.  We saw many pairs of large magpies, and some other
birds which the driver informed us build large mud nests.  Then the Great
Ants, too, are very numerous, so that one dare not sit down anywhere to
rest.  The flies are also a great pest, and as my companion said, “won’t
take a hint,” requiring to be toppled over before they will move.  At
about seven a.m. we passed the Royal Mail bowling along amongst the
trees, our driver quickly making a fresh track to avoid the fearful dust
which it raised.  The coach is a big lumbering machine, painted flaring
red, and drawn by six horses.  It is licensed to carry sixty-five
passengers, who can only be got on to it by being packed like herrings in
a barrel.  The weather being so hot and the dust so great, it must be
terrible to be cooped up in it with fat people and thin smokers and
others.  The coaches are hung upon enormous leather “springs,” and they
need them, for the road is so rough, and the coachmen are so daring, that
the bumping and thumping are terrific.  Each coach is fitted with four
large reflector lamps, three in front and one behind.

While baiting the horses I had a chat with a farm labourer, who, like a
great many of the immigrants with whom I have spoken, was sighing for old
England again.  He told me the ordinary farm labourer’s wages here are
12s. to 15s. a week with board, and that 20s. a week is considered
exceptionally good, while the great heat, dust, and reptiles are so
troublesome that most of the labourers wish they were well out of it.
This man told me his little terrier was killed by a snake a day or two
before; the poor creature swelled up and died in great agony in ten
minutes after being bitten; its death, however, was speedily avenged, his
master killing the snake shortly afterwards.  The landlady said she was
in great terror of the snakes, which were very numerous.  Near the run
was a large log, and it was well known that a big black snake had taken
up his abode there, for he was frequently seen to come out.  In the
winter season the reptile would very soon have been despatched by the
same process adopted by the Chinaman when he wanted “roast pig,” but this
being summer, to fire the log meant to cause a general conflagration in
the bush.

The power of endurance of Australian post-horses is something wonderful;
yesterday we travelled more than thirty-five miles after one o’clock,
over a rough bush road, or rather no road at all, bumping up and down in
a way that must be very trying to the poor animals, as the “path” is
never certain; and to-day we had to go nearly fifty miles more, the heat
being intense, and the track covered with dust nearly a foot thick.

                      [Picture: An Up-Country Town]

Our driver, a mere lad of thirteen years, drove on with the greatest
confidence, never having missed the way once, though there were no
direction posts, and we did not come across a person or house once in ten
miles, and were amongst the trees all the time.  Towards evening the
horses got rather tired, and so did poor “Tommy,” the driver, who at
times had a quiet “weep” to himself, but at last we reached Albury, and
found our Melbourne friend awaiting us at the hotel.

For hours before, we had in view a fine range of hills, enclosing a large
extent of country, including the valley along which the River Murray
runs.  Here we got the blue, purple, and roseate tints on the mountains
to perfection, and as the sun was going down just as we entered the town
I thought I had rarely seen a more delightful picture.

There is a thriving, well-to-do look about the place which is very
enlivening, the houses being well built, with wide verandahs projecting
from two storeys, the streets straight and wide, and planted on both
sides with acacias, poplars, and several varieties of pines, the whole
forming a veritable little paradise.

This being the great centre of the wine-growing industry we were desirous
of visiting the vineyards and seeing the capacious cellars which are
formed in the hills, and for which the district is somewhat celebrated,
but our friend, being very anxious to get back to Melbourne, assured us
there was “nothing to see here,” and told us to wait till we got into
Victoria, and so hurried us off.

We left Albury at 5.30 on the following morning, driving across the
Murray to the railway station at Wodonga, the first town on the Victorian
side, as Albury is the last on the New South Wales side, and the contrast
between the two is great indeed—just the difference between prosperity
and decay.  New South Wales, with its Free Trade policy, is fitly
represented by bright and shining Albury, while Victoria may well read a
lesson from the decay and ruin into which Wodonga has fallen.  I could
not help thinking that a dozen such contrasts along the frontiers of the
two States would do more than anything to settle the fate of Protection.
Even the omnibus driver was full of the subject, pointing out to us as we
rode along the difference between the two places.

The railway ride to Melbourne occupies eight hours, although the distance
is only about 180 miles.  On the way we passed through Euroa, the town
which was “stuck up,” _i.e._, plundered, by the notorious Kelly and his
gang.  There were only four of these fellows in the gang, but such was
the terror they inspired that they were able to rob a whole town in broad
daylight, while a train was passing through the station close by the bank
from which they took a considerable amount of cash.  Having done this,
they next ordered all the people into carts, and drove them some miles
out of the town, ordering them not to stir for four hours under pain of
death.  Having secured their booty the scoundrels rode off, and for two
years succeeded in eluding the vigilance of the police, although the
Government offered a reward of £8,000 for their capture, alive or dead.



CHAPTER VI.


Before leaving the subject of the Australian Colonies a few observations
on the state of the labour market, and upon the social condition of the
people, may be interesting.

In most of the Australian colonies Free Trade practically prevails, the
exception being Victoria.  In this colony the system of Protection is to
be found in its most pronounced form, almost every imported article of
manufacture being the subject of a heavy duty.

The avowed object of this system is to encourage immigration by offering
a premium upon the manufacture of every article in considerable demand in
the Colony.  I do not know how far this object has been attained as
concerns immigration, but it is an admitted fact, and one which is
causing Victorian politicians much anxiety, that the colony fails to
retain its population.  One result about which there can be no question
is that this fiscal policy is concentrating the population about the
large towns, the city of Melbourne presenting the appearance of the chief
town of an old and populous State.  A ride in any direction into the
country, however, soon discloses the real nakedness of the land as
regards inhabitants, the fact being that a very small proportion of the
immigrants ever get beyond the towns.  An obvious consequence is that the
natural resources of the country are greatly neglected, and the evil of
this state of things will be apprehended when it is seen that the
manufacturing population is increasing in a vastly greater ratio than the
constituency upon which its trade depends.  Under such conditions the
dangers of the situation are seriously augmented when depression of trade
occurs.  Such a state of things arose before the building of the late
Exhibition in Melbourne.  The building trade and the mechanical
industries in the city being in a stagnant state, large numbers of people
found themselves out of employment, their attitude causing the Government
some anxiety.  The Exhibition was decided upon in the hope that its
erection would provide employment until trade should revive.  I asked one
of the Commissioners of the Exhibition what would happen if trade did not
revive on the completion of the building?  He replied, “Oh, they shall
take it down again, for it will be useless after the Exhibition is over.”
Surely a notable instance of the dog subsisting by eating its own tail.

A natural result of all this is to produce in the minds of the working
classes a feeling that the Legislature ought to secure to them a constant
supply of work at high rates of wages, altogether leaving out of
consideration the inevitable effect of such a course in checking demand.
Naturally, each class expects to receive the benefit of this policy, and
it is not surprising that the example of the manufacturers in demanding
Protection should be followed, and even bettered, by the working men.

A curious example of this occurred when I was in Australia.  The streets
of Melbourne, being very wide and long, are peculiarly well adapted for
the introduction of tramways.  A Bill was introduced into the House
authorising the construction of an experimental line, but it had to be
abandoned in consequence of the determined opposition of the cab drivers,
the majority of whom own the vehicles which they drive.  These men
argued, naturally enough, that as manufacturing trades were protected
against foreigners, their business also should be protected against
competition in the only form in which it could arise.  Doubtless this
resistance will eventually be overcome, but not without leaving a sense
of injustice.

While each class seeks to have the benefit of Protection for its own
manufactures, it also seeks to obtain the benefits of Free Trade for the
raw material and smaller accessories used in their production.  At the
time I am referring to, a Tariff Revision Commission was in session, and
representatives of the various manufacturing trades were examined with
the view of ascertaining whether any changes were desirable.  In almost
every case extensive additions to the duty were demanded, eliciting from
some of the members of the Commission a reminder that on previous
occasions the representatives of protected industries declared they only
required the tax to be levied for a limited time in order to enable them
to establish their business.

The Protectionist newspapers used every means to stir up the various
trades to avail themselves of the opportunity the Commission afforded of
making fresh claims.

It so happens that most of the materials used for newspaper printing are
admitted duty free.  The _Argus_, the leading journal in Victoria, and a
consistent advocate of Free Trade, took this opportunity of suggesting
that the proprietors of the Protectionist journals should prove the
sincerity of their expressed opinions by appearing before the Commission
and demanding the imposition of a tax upon newspaper materials in the
interests of “native industry.”  Of course the suggestion was not
adopted, perhaps for this reason, also suggested by the _Argus_, that the
struggle for existence was already sufficiently severe.

The operative printers also demanded of the Commission that printed books
should be more heavily taxed, one of their delegates remarking that
“there was sufficient talent in Victoria to produce their own books,”
while a manufacturer, with great candour, asked for a little increase
upon his special productions on the plea that his profit was not “quite
enough!”

If profits are not enough prices are certainly sufficiently high, as the
following instance will abundantly show.  At the close of 1882 one
hundred locomotives were required by the Government of Victoria, and
although the needs of the country were most urgent—complaints of the
inefficiency of the service coming in from all sides—the Protectionist
party in the House demanded that the whole number should be made in the
Colony, although there was only one firm who could undertake their
manufacture, and that firm was unable to deliver the first engine under a
period of ten months, and in addition to this, the total price demanded
for the contract was £66,000 more than the engines could have been
procured for without delay in England.  It is admitted that the
locomotives made in the Colony are much inferior to those imported, while
in addition to the excess in first cost, the expense of maintaining the
colonial engines is vastly greater.  I was assured by competent
authorities on the railways that the colonial engines are frequently
under repair, and that their life is much shorter than that of their
English rivals.  The same evil principle is applied to the purchase of
the miscellaneous stores supplied to the railways, thereby greatly
enhancing the cost of working.  Instances might be multiplied of the
mischievous effects of a vicious fiscal policy in a young and undeveloped
Colony.  It is notorious that the great want of the Colonies is a larger
population, and the Government in various ways—notably by making grants
in aid of immigration—offer inducements to bring this result about.  The
manufacturers also require a larger field for their productions; but the
working-class element is jealous of this very increase lest it should
subject labour to competition, unmindful of the fact that there is ample
room for an infinitely larger population.

Neither the agricultural nor the mining industries of the Colony are
protected.  As regards the former, public opinion would not permit the
taxation of food; whilst, in the latter case, the minerals raised are,
for the most part, exported, there being scarcely any demand for them in
the Colony.  But, while these industries receive no benefit from the
fiscal policy of the Colony, they are heavily taxed in support of the
revenue, for not only are all the machinery and materials used in their
development subject to more than 25 per cent. import duty, but the cost
of labour is greatly enhanced by the high wages, which become necessary
when the purchasing power of money is diminished by Protection.  Every
year witnesses a considerable expansion of the industries in question;
and every year the cry becomes louder against the injustice and
inequality of a system which places the natural resources of the country
under so great a disadvantage.  In consequence of the urgency of these
complaints there is now some prospect of a reduction of the duty on
agricultural and mining machinery.

I have met with men who were always ready to descant upon the advantages
of Protection, but who, almost in the same breath, have told me they have
never hesitated to evade the laws when they could do so to advantage, or
even to break them when it suited their convenience and they could do so
without much risk, justifying their conduct by saying that it was “quite
right to cheat the Government when they could, because the Government
were always ready to cheat them.”  In order to circumvent the practices
of such men as these, the Legislature has been compelled to institute a
complicated system of accounts in connection with the importation of
goods, harassing in the last degree to those who have been accustomed to
do business in a country where trade is unshackled.

In spite of the boasted advantages of Protection, it is evident that some
manufacturers are not happy under it, as is shown by the fact of my
having some time ago received from an important manufacturing firm in
Victoria an application for my business agency in the Colony.  In their
application, the firm stated that the workpeople in the Colony were so
very independent and so uncertain that they (the firm in question) would
rather at any time sell imported articles at a smaller profit than
manufacture them in their own works.

I have stated that the avowed objects of Protection were the attraction
of a larger population and the fostering of “native industry.”  Now, with
these very objects in view, the public men of New South Wales have from
the first adopted and persisted in a policy diametrically opposed to that
which has for years past been in force in the neighbouring Colony of
Victoria.  If the principles of Protection be sound, we should expect to
find in the Free Trade Colony of New South Wales a state of things even
much worse than I have shown to exist in Victoria.  But what do we find?
A constantly increasing population; abundance of employment; a vast and
continually expanding railway system; shipping considerably greater than
that of the Port of London one hundred years ago; an import and export
trade greater than that of Great Britain at the same period; in short,
every evidence of great and enduring prosperity.

As in America, “where acres are many and men are few,” the manufacture of
agricultural machinery has been brought to greater perfection than in
almost any other country, so in Australia the same conditions have
developed a flourishing manufacture of special machinery used in
mining—one of the staple industries of the country.  A demand for this
improved machinery has recently sprung up in other countries, a
considerable order having been received from India by an Australian firm
while I was there.

In Sydney—not in spite of, but because of, Free Trade—the largest
manufacturing concern in the Australian Colonies has grown up.  The
founders of this large business had the sagacity at the outset to
recognise that there were certain articles which must of necessity be
better and more cheaply made in the Colony than they could be imported.
They put down steam saw-mills for supplying planking, which before had
been imported; they next proceeded to make such articles as
window-sashes, doors, frames, etc., for house-building, choosing such as
could be manufactured almost entirely by machinery, which they obtained
from England and America.  By such natural means, and altogether free
from legislative interference, they have built up the enormous business
known as Hudson Brothers, Limited, railway rolling-stock manufacturers.
It is clear that with the most improved machinery, purchased in the
cheapest markets and imported duty free, and having inexhaustible
supplies of native timber, not only cheaper but much better adapted to
the climate than that hitherto imported, the opening for a perfectly
legitimate business presented itself; in fact, they created a genuine
“native industry.”  But Messrs. Hudson, recognising, as already pointed
out, that other countries have also special advantages for the production
of certain articles, wisely abstain from attempting a hopeless
competition.  For this reason they import such portions of the
rolling-stock as wheels, axles, springs, carriage-furniture, etc.

The free importation of mining and agricultural machinery into New South
Wales has given these industries such a stimulus that they have been more
generally developed throughout that Colony than those of Victoria,
causing a continuous and increasing demand for labour.  The immigration
into New South Wales is greatly in excess of that into Victoria; and, in
addition to this, large numbers of artisans and others are continually
crossing the border from the latter into the former Colony.  In 1880,
forty-five thousand persons arrived in New South Wales from other than
Australian ports, and it is not too much to say that there is ample room
for four times their number every year.

Until a few years since the great shipping companies had their repairing
yards and shops in Victoria, but the extremely high cost of everything
required by them compelled them at last to remove their establishments to
her Free Trade neighbour, thereby effecting a very considerable saving.
The same causes have doubtless been influential in securing to New South
Wales the remarkable development of its shipping interests during the
last generation.

So little is known in England of what our friends in the Colonies are
doing, that probably many will be startled to learn that whereas in 1782
the total imports and exports of Great Britain amounted in value to about
£23,850,000, in New South Wales, in 1881, the value was £27,650,000.

During the last thirty years the shipping annually arriving in Sydney has
increased from 90 vessels, with a tonnage of 48,776, to 1,389 vessels,
with a tonnage of 973,425; and the clearances in the same period
increased from 47 vessels, with a tonnage of 24,081, to 1,322 vessels,
with a tonnage of 941,895.

During the last ten years, too, the population of New South Wales has
increased 53 per cent., while that of Victoria has only increased 18 per
cent., and while the excess of immigration over emigration in the former
Colony has quadrupled, it has been almost stationary in the latter.

During the same period the Customs revenue in Victoria, notwithstanding
the high tariff, has remained almost stationary; while in New South
Wales, with a low tariff and smaller population, it has increased nearly
one-half.  The imports, too, have increased 80 per cent., against 17 per
cent. in Victoria, and the exports 94 per cent. against 28 per cent.

These figures, taken from official papers in 1882, have never been dealt
with by Victorian Protectionists, but are full of meaning to all those
whom vested interests have not made blind.  While it is true that
Australia presents, and will continue to present, a great field for the
surplus population of older countries, it is, in my opinion, a mistake to
suppose that the upper grades of English artisans improve their position
much by going there.  Wages are higher it is true, and eight hours make
up a day’s work; animal food also is cheaper, but almost everything else
is dearer than in England—house-rents, indeed, enormously so.  An artisan
who in Birmingham would be well housed for 5s. to 6s. a week would have
to pay £1 for much inferior accommodation; this remark applies generally
in Australia, the principal cause being the great lack of artisans in the
building trade.  Many too, may consider the higher wages and shorter
hours of labour as not too great a compensation for the exhaustion
induced by the heat and dust of the climate and the annoyance from insect
life.  But for unskilled labour and for skilled agricultural labour there
can be only one opinion,—viz., that the Colonies present a field where
sobriety and industry are certain to bring a reward such as is altogether
unattainable at home.

The education of the people is admirably provided for by the Legislature,
every district being well supplied with first-rate schools, while the
means of intercommunication by rail, post, and telegraph are superior to
those of any country in the world, when the smallness of the population
and the immense distances to be covered are taken into consideration.

In Australia, especially in the southern Colonies, there is happily no
native question to absorb the attention of the people and to upset the
calculations of financiers, consequently the colonists are able to devote
all their energy to opening up the natural resources of the country.  At
the present time many millions of money are set aside for the
construction of new railways and for the supply and storage of water, and
when these are completed vast areas of agricultural land will be opened
sufficient to accommodate all the spare population of England for many
years to come.

If “Young Australia,” like his cousin in America, has an unbounded
confidence in the future of his country, he has even more in himself, as
is well illustrated by the following story told me by an old resident.
In one of the cities a number of young men had established a Debating
Society, which met every Wednesday evening in a room in a narrow street.
On the other side of the street was a church where service was held at
the same time.  The weather being hot the windows of both buildings were
usually open, and the important deliberations of the young men were much
interrupted by the preaching and singing in the church.  With a
delightful unconsciousness of what in slang phrase is called “cheek,”
they instructed their secretary to write to the minister of the church,
requesting him to hold his service upon some other evening of the week!

The people of Australia are possessed of vast energy and great
intelligence: and, having unlimited and well-grounded faith in their
capacity to conquer the many difficulties which lie before them, they
determined that their future career shall do no discredit to the great
country from which they have sprung, and of whose history they are so
proud.

      [Picture: The Duck-Billed Platypus (Ornithorhyncus paradoxus)]



CHAPTER VII.


We left Sydney in the first week in April, and although we had greatly
enjoyed the beautiful scenery of its fine harbour and the neighbouring
Blue Mountains, and had experienced the greatest kindness and hospitality
on every side, we were not sorry to depart.

In the first place, we were homeward-bound, and I had recovered the
health, in search of which I had left home and friends, and the weather
had been so oppressively hot and the dust so troublesome, that we were
glad of the prospect of the abatement of the one and the total
disappearance of the other.

For ten months the Colony had had no rain, and in the neighbourhood of
Sydney trees were dying by hundreds, and gardens which had been carefully
tended for fifteen or twenty years were nearly spoiled.  The outlook for
agriculturists was dark indeed, very indifferent hay was selling for £10
a ton, and the cattle were perishing for want of water.  I saw a
statement in the paper that one farmer had already lost 45,000 sheep, and
if the drought lasted a few weeks longer he would lose 50,000 more.  The
most inveterate grumbler at the moisture of the English climate would, if
here in Sydney, soon arrive at the conclusion that six months’ rain is to
be preferred to ten months’ drought and dust under a scorching sun.

Some friends accompanied us on board our steamer, and observing that the
sky had become overcast with every prospect of a heavy downpour, I
endeavoured to persuade them to return to shore, but they said the sky
often looked overcast but soon became clear again, and that there would
be no rain; still I was not comfortable, and presently induced them to
go.  Half-an-hour afterwards our time was up, the ship’s gun was fired,
and down came the rain in such torrents as made me very apprehensive for
the safety of my friends, lest their boat should be swamped.  On arriving
at New York I found a letter from them informing me that the rain filled
the boat so fast that it was with some difficulty they could keep it
afloat.

Our vessel was an exceedingly fine one, and was on her first voyage.  Her
length was 400ft. and she was 40ft. wide across the saloon.  The
appointments seemed to be all very good, although it soon appeared that
she was insufficiently supplied with stewards, the consequence being that
the meals were badly served.  Everything, however, was done according to
rule, and it was curious to see the order in which the various dishes
were brought in.  The chief steward rang a bell once, and the stewards
marched into the saloon in single file, dishes in hand; two rings, right
wheel; three times, place dishes on the table; and at the fourth ringing
of the bell, remove covers and march out with them.  It looked like a
pantomime, and caused us considerable merriment.  The head steward was a
negro, and it was curious to note how he lorded it over the white
stewards.

A rough passage of four days brought us to the entrance of Auckland
harbour.  The previous day it was very stormy, and an albatross which had
been following us for some time, frequently flying across the ship
between the masts, at length either flew, or was blown, against one of
the masts, and fell dead upon the deck.

In approaching the town of Auckland a number of islands of curious shape,
surmounted with rocks bearing the appearance of castles are passed.
Auckland looks well from the harbour, which is a very fine one; behind
the town a mountain rises to a considerable altitude, greatly adding to
the picturesqueness of the view.

Our ship was the largest that had ever been in the harbour, and we
expected soon to have a number of boats plying for hire, but none
appeared until half our limited time had expired, and consequently very
few passengers went ashore.  We took a quantity of coal on board, the
quality of which was very bad, giving off volumes of the densest smoke.
It is much inferior to the New South Wales coal, which in its turn is not
equal to English.

For the first ten days the Pacific greatly belied its name, being in a
state of great commotion the whole time; indeed, most of the way to San
Francisco the roll was very considerable.  As we neared Kandavu, in the
Fiji Islands, the dreaded coral reefs began to come in sight.  Some of
them stretch out for fifteen miles from the land, and are known to
approaching vessels by the white crests of the long lines of breakers.
Navigation is very dangerous, and the harbour of Kandavu is a very
difficult one to make.  Just before entering we passed within fifty feet
of the masts of a sunken ship; but, having brought a native pilot from
Sydney, we got inside safely.  The harbour is exceedingly beautiful.  For
some distance from the water on each side the ground is covered with
cocoa-nut and bread-fruit trees, large ferns, and a great variety of
bright green foliage, while beyond is a range of hills of beautiful
shapes and well wooded.

It being Sunday only two or three boats made their appearance, the
missionaries not permitting the natives to come out to trade or to
gratify their curiosity on that day.  Knowing this we were not a little
amazed to receive a visit presently from the missionaries themselves, who
were rowed by eight very intelligent natives, having no clothing worthy
of mention.  Some of our party taxed the missionaries with their lack of
consistency, and were answered that they came “by invitation.”  The
natives have fine open faces, with good foreheads, bright and restless
eyes.  They are of a dark chocolate or liver colour.  Their hair is very
abundant, but they spoil it by putting quicklime upon it, turning it to a
dirty reddish brown.  Their vivacity is astonishing.  They laugh and
chatter in a ceaseless chorus, but their language is not musical.  One
old fellow was particularly voluble; he was in a boat, and was giving
instructions to his crew in a fearfully loud voice, which sounded like
the slipping of a ship’s cable through the hawser-hole.

                       [Picture: A Native of Fiji]

It was great fun to watch the children diving for money.  If you threw a
sixpence into the water they would go after it and catch it before it had
gone down many feet, quickly reappearing to ask—like Oliver Twist—for
more, and with a grin, disclosing teeth which made us envy them.

Some of our fellow-passengers went ashore, and were much charmed with all
they saw.  The little children very much delighted them by coming up and
putting their hands into those of their visitors, leading them off to
show them the bread-fruit and banana trees.

Just as daylight was going our gun was fired, and with our pilot on board
we steamed out of the harbour, having the pilot’s boat in tow, manned
with as merry a crew as ever rowed a boat.  The captain was very anxious
to get clear of the reefs before dusk, and so went at a pretty good
speed, and although the pilot-boat was half out of the water, and was
constantly being swamped, the crew laughed and shrieked with delight,
shouting and making curious noises like Christy Minstrels.

Presently they commenced a song, one old fellow beating time with an
oar—but we preferred the shrieking.  Soon the pilot clambered down the
ship’s side, and after giving him three cheers we set off at full speed.

There are many sharks in these waters, but it is said they are not fond
of the dark skins.  Whether that is so or not I do not know, but
certainly both boys and men disregard the presence of these monsters in
diving for money.

The day after leaving Kandavu we passed through a beautiful group of
islands surrounded with coral reefs.  We passed so close to two of these
islands that we were able to see the cocoa-nut trees quite distinctly,
the bright green vegetation rising just above the pure white surf, and
the whole surrounded by the glorious purple and azure of the ocean.
While passing one of the islands we saw a huge waterspout burst, and were
glad our ship was well out of it.

Soon after leaving the Fiji Islands the crew were put through
fire-brigade practice.  The bell was rung continuously, the whistles
blown, and the crew and stewards rushed to the fire-engines, and got out
the buckets and hose, and soon began playing over the ship, while the
first officer superintended the getting out and lowering of the boats.
As very few persons were warned of what was going to be done, there was
naturally great excitement amongst the passengers, one lady fainting in
the saloon, thinking the ship was really on fire.  I was not impressed
with the smartness or efficiency of either officers or crew, and was
devoutly thankful that there was no need for their services; and yet I
often wondered there were no fires, there being so many kerosene lamps
all over the ship, to say nothing of the immense kitchen fires, where
twice in one morning I saw a regular burst of flame through an unskilful
cook overturning the fat in the absence of his chief.

In going from England to Australia, and returning via the Pacific, and
across America, one day is gained, and in order to keep our calendar
right we had to “drop a day,” or when we arrived at Liverpool we should
be a day in advance of our home friends.  This is done by having two days
of the same name and date in one week.  It appears rather curious but is
plain enough, for our general course since leaving home was eastward, and
continued so until we reached home.  Now, as in going east, four minutes
to each degree are gained (the reverse in going west), it follows that in
the 360 degrees into which the earth’s circumference is divided, a total
gain of 360 × 4 = 1,440 minutes, or 24 hours is made.

Our doctor was somewhat of a curiosity.  One evening he told me that one
of the passengers, who was suffering from an ailment of the eyes, had
declined his further services, preferring to pay one of the passengers
who was a medical man.  He assured me he had no feeling about it, he was
quite above that sort of thing.  “Our profession,” he said, “is one in
which we should always practice the virtue of charity in accordance with
the teaching of Christ, whose follower I trust I am.”  But observing that
during the conversation he frequently swore, I gave him a hint about it.
“Ah,” said he, “you remind me of my little wife at home; whenever I swear
or consign any one to a warm place, she puts her finger up and says, ‘Ah,
don’t do that, you know you don’t mean it,’ which of course is perfectly
true, so there is no harm in it.”  One of our doctors was re-named a
“compound-conceited-cuss-of-a-colonial-cockatoo-quack-of-a-doctor.”  He
believed in the Australian “spread eagle”—in the cockatoo, that is—and
had visions of a time when England would be a “foreign” country.  But he
was labouring under the impression that there were eight millions of
people in the Australian colonies, whereas there were not more than 2½
millions of white, black, yellow, and brown.

Life on shipboard is not more free from little personal difficulties than
on land: one of our colonial friends daily raised the susceptibilities of
his neighbours at the dinner table by emptying a favourite dish of fruit
into his pocket for home consumption; while just before reaching Honolulu
it was rumoured there was to be a duel as soon as we arrived at the
island.  One of the English travellers had an objectionable habit of
turning the fruit over with his fingers at dessert, and picking out the
best.  A colonial gentleman frequently rebuked him mildly for his breach
of good manners, telling him he should “touch and take”; and so it
resulted in a quarrel which it was said “blood alone can quell.”  It is
satisfactory, however, to know that the deadly encounter did not come
off.

Being told by the Captain that we might expect to land at Honolulu at 6
p.m., the four o’clock dinner table was comparatively deserted, most of
the passengers preferring to reserve themselves for what the Yankees call
a “good square meal” on shore.  We arrived off the entrance to the
harbour in good time, and made the usual signals for a pilot, but with no
result.  After sunset, guns and rockets were fired, but no pilot
appearing, the Captain decided to run in without one.  In consequence of
the delay it was ten o’clock before we landed, when we found the
islanders were _en fête_, and were informed that on such occasions the
pilots decline to go out for vessels.  Just as we were about to land, one
of our passengers, in the darkness, fell overboard, but being a good
swimmer and a strong, fearless man, he managed to get aboard again, with
no worse result than a wetting.  This gentleman had the reputation of
being somewhat of a sceptic, and that afternoon I had been discussing
with him the subject of a future state.  When he was safe on deck again I
reminded him of our conversation, and asked what his thoughts were when
under the water in such a perilous situation.  He replied, “I will tell
you exactly what I did think.  When I fell overboard I had three
shillings in my hand, and my first thought when under water was as to
their safety; so, before doing anything else, I safely deposited them in
my pocket, and then proceeded to ‘go aloft.’”  On landing we found
ourselves amongst a motley throng, whose faces, however, were too dark to
be seen, the majority dressed in light coloured raiment, and all
laughing, shouting, jabbering and shrieking in a ten times more lively
manner than a mob of gay Neapolitans on the arrival of a train at Naples.
We found the hotel about a mile from the landing place, and very much
enjoyed the walk along the wide unpaved streets, lined with houses of
various shapes and sizes, many with gardens around them.  Myriads of
fire-flies lit up the darkness, and the air was laden with the perfume of
tropical flowers.  On arriving at the hotel, we found it to be a
spacious, well-lighted building, with lofty reception rooms, through
which we wandered in quest of waiters to whom to give our orders for
supper, but no servant could we find, neither could we get any response
to the bells, which were vigorously rung by a hungry crowd.  We made our
way to the office, and were there informed that we could get nothing to
eat till next morning, as the servants had “gone home,” and nothing was
served after nine o’clock.  It was in vain we declared we were starving;
the only reply was that we could get what we liked to _drink_ at the bar.
A Yankee standing by, pitying our plight, said it was quite true we could
get nothing that night, but told us how we could be the first to be
served in the morning.  He recommended us to order our breakfast at the
office before leaving, and to pay for it there and then, and to be at the
hotel again before seven o’clock next morning.  This we did, and then
returned to the vessel, where we also were too late to obtain anything to
eat.  In the morning we were early at the hotel (buying some delicious
strawberries on the way), and proceeding to the breakfast room, were
informed we could not obtain admission until seven o’clock.  At the
appointed hour the folding doors were opened by two natives of the
“Flowery Land,” and we were soon seated at the tables, which were crowded
with a bountiful supply of most tempting viands, and quantities of
luscious fruit.

As soon as all the seats were occupied the Celestial waiter closed the
door, and was most assiduous in seeing that his staff attended carefully
to the wants of his guests.  Presently there were loud knockings at the
door, to which no attention whatever was vouchsafed by the smiling
Chinee; and when the knockings were varied by angry exclamations from our
friends outside, his face became blander still.  It could not be said of
this “Heathen Chinee” that his “tricks they were vain,” for they were
only too effectual in keeping the hungry crowd at bay.  When we had quite
finished (and I fear we were in no haste to depart), the doors were
opened to admit a further batch of impatient voyagers, and even then only
one half of the expectant throng could be admitted, the remainder being
advised to betake themselves to the restaurants in the town.  We shall
not soon forget our experiences at the Honolulu Hotel, the landlord of
which is no less a personage than His Most Gracious Majesty the King of
the Hawaiian Islands.

We occupied the remainder of the limited time at our disposal in walking
and driving around the town and neighbourhood.

The date and other palms, india-rubber and cocoanut trees, tree ferns,
guavas, and other kinds of tropical vegetation flourish here in great
abundance.  Flowers of the most brilliant colours grow everywhere, and
the houses of the better classes seem perfect little paradises, with
numerous jets of water flying.  The grass is delightfully green and
beautiful, and great dragon-flies flit about in all directions.  Here and
there we came across a group of little black-eyed, brown-faced, merry
children, looking shyly at the white strangers, and rushing wildly along
the streets.  We also met numbers of natives on horseback, dressed in
splendid colours—red, blue, yellow, and green—all mixed, or in masses of
one or more of these delicate hues.  “Will you ride,” said one.  “Not
to-day,” I said, “perhaps to-morrow.”  “That no good,” replied he, “for
steamer sails tomorrow!” and off he went at a gallop.  They are sharp,
sprightly fellows, very handsome, wonderfully lithe and active, and have
dark, flashing eyes.

The women of the labouring class are very stately looking, and walk with
a dignity and grace a duchess might envy.  Their clothing is not of a
very extensive character, consisting apparently of one long loose robe,
gathered neatly around the neck and wrists, with gay-coloured ribbons,
and suggesting the idea that seven years would be an unnecessary time for
a Honolulu girl to be bound to learn dressmaking.

Meeting a number of little girls returning from school, I tried to get
them to come and read to us out of their books.  They were very shy, and
it was some time before they would venture near us.  At last one of them
let me have her book, and I saw that her name was Emma—after the good
queen of that name, who visited England a few years since—so I said,
“Now, Emma, read us something, and I will give you this,” holding a new
threepenny piece before her.  At once she came and read a page in the
true conventional schoolgirl monotone.  The book was printed in Honolulu,
and was in the native language, which sounded sweet, and free from
harshness.  She was a nice-looking little girl, quite a “brownie,” and
was much pleased with her threepenny-piece.  The children were delighted
at seeing Queen Victoria’s face on the coin, and frequently repeated her
name.  The race is fast dying out, and in a few generations will become
extinct.

During the day we visited a school, and looked over the Parliament House,
which is a handsome building.  The hall is very large and lofty, and so
also are the rooms, the walls and ceilings being lined with a smooth
white enamel.  In connection with the House of Parliament there is a
tolerably good library, and the nucleus of a good museum, but the country
is very poor; indeed I am told it is almost bankrupt.  On passing the
post-office it occurred to us to ask if there were any letters for us,
although we did not expect any, and putting our cards on the table we
said we supposed there were no letters for us.  “Oh, but there are
though,” the clerk said, “and I am very glad to get rid of them,”
whereupon, to our intense delight, he produced a huge packet of letters
and papers.

While driving into the country we passed many pretty villas, with gardens
full of splendid shrubs and flowers, and on to a native village.  The
houses are made chiefly of large rushes, which grow here in great
abundance.  There seem to be no chairs or seats in the houses, every one
squatting on the ground.  We passed some native women carrying their
babies, and I asked if they would sell me one.  “Yes, for a dollar,” one
replied; but when I said “Very well, then, bring it here,” she altered
her mind, which was a good thing for me, for I should not have known what
to do with a black baby.

              [Picture: Ruth, The King’s Sister (Died 1883)]

The temperature of Honolulu ranges between 60° and 88°, and the islands
are always fanned by the N.E. trade winds, rendering them exceedingly
healthy.

Our visit conveyed the impression to our minds that it would be
impossible to spend a month more delightfully than among the Hawaiian
group, and we bade adieu to Honolulu with the greatest regret.

It was a beautiful moonlight evening when we left Honolulu for San
Francisco, and after many months’ travelling by land and sea, we began to
feel that we were at last really homeward bound, for would not our _next_
voyage land us at Liverpool?  While at Honolulu we received a very
considerable addition to our passenger list in the persons of a number of
Americans, of both sexes, some of them being gentlefolks and some of them
not.  We also took on board three thousand bundles of bananas, which were
hung up in the netting all round the promenade deck.  This was a most
unfair arrangement on the part of the captain, as not only were the seats
on this deck rendered unavailable, and a large portion of the space
occupied, but the ship became overrun with centipedes, some of them five
inches long, making it like Egypt during one of the plagues, “for they
were in all our quarters,” in our beds and in our clothes.  Americans, as
a rule, are not good sailors.  Hence it is that when commencing a voyage
they take it for granted that they are going to be ill, and make their
arrangements accordingly.  My companions had been flattering themselves
that the spare berth in their cabin would remain empty to the end of the
voyage, but they were doomed to disappointment, for it was their bad
fortune to receive one of the most bilious-looking of the new arrivals.
On entering the cabin the first observation the Yankee made was, “Where
d’ye throw up?”  The answer to which was, “We don’t ‘throw up’ at all.
We _go_ up and lean over the lee side.”  The event proved the Yankee’s
apprehensions to be well founded.  One party of Americans were returning
from a prolonged residence on one of the islands of the Pacific, where
they appeared to have acquired some of the native habits.  One day these
people were taking their lunch on deck; it consisted of chicken and a
native dish called “POI.”  The latter was a substance like bill-stickers’
paste, and was contained in a large bowl.  The company, which numbered
some five or six persons, men and women, sat upon the deck around the
bowl, and, having learned from their new acquaintances, the savages, to
do without spoons and separate dishes, helped themselves to the delicious
mixture by each dipping two fingers into the common bowl until it was
empty.  They then attacked the chicken, and had evidently taken lessons
in carving from the same authorities, for they adopted the primitive plan
of pulling it to pieces.  Of course these proceedings excited
considerable remark among the passengers, but the party seemed quite
insensible to observation.

Another of our passengers was an American, named Steinberg, who had a
grievance against the British Government on account of an alleged outrage
on the part of an English man-of-war’s crew, in some dispute in the
Samoan Islands.  He was nursing his wrath until he arrived at Washington,
when he certainly thought England’s fate would be settled, and that she
would be “chawed up catawampously.”  This man was accompanied by a Yankee
journalist of a most anti-British type.  He was a sallow-faced man with a
large square lower jaw, without any hair on his face, and with straight
lanky locks, and, moreover, was something under five feet high.  He was
so thorough-going in his hatred of everything British that when “God save
the Queen” was sung at the close of a concert in the saloon, he got up
with much fuss and stalked out, followed by some half-dozen of his
countrymen.  We called the fiery editor “Jefferson Brick,” after Martin
Chuzzlewit’s acquaintance.  On one occasion I heard a friend of this
gentleman ask him if he had a chair on deck.  He said he had not, as the
Britishers always brought a good supply.  I took the hint, and determined
that, at any rate, he should not use mine.  Soon afterwards it happened
that a sea, breaking over the deck, soaked the carpet seat of my chair,
which obliged me to place it in a sunny position that it might dry.
Presently I saw “Mr. Brick” deliberately fetch the chair, which was a
very comfortable one, and, taking it into the shade, settle down on it.
I went to him and remarked that the chair was quite wet.  “I guess it’s
dry now,” said he, with the peculiar twang of a down-east Yankee.  Seeing
that he failed to take the hint, I told him that the chair was mine and
that I would thank him to give it up.  This he did, with a remark that he
“did not see what people who were always walking about wanted with chairs
at all.”

We were not altogether without curious examples of our own countrymen as
fellow-passengers.  One in particular, an Irish tradesman, from one of
the New Zealand ports, seemed determined to amuse and be amused.  We
called our friend “Mister,” because he addressed everybody by that name.
It appears that “Mister” was too fond of liquor, and that he had to take
an occasional holiday, in order to give his friends an opportunity of
putting his affairs straight at home.  I was told that he had a
flourishing business, which was managed by two able assistants, who
insisted upon his leaving them for twelve months in the interest of the
concern, under the penalty, if he returned, of their opening an
opposition shop.  “Mister” told me he had been educated in four Colleges
in Ireland, which, doubtless, accounted for the remarkable absence of
knowledge he displayed.  He frequently alarmed us by the disappearance of
the knife down his throat at the dinner table.  One evening he
volunteered to read at one of the entertainments in the saloon, and
caused great amusement by the richness of his humour and of his
brogue—winding up his reading by the impromptu observation, “and shure it
is oi that am moighty dray.”  We shall hear of “Mister” again when we get
to San Francisco.

One of our passengers, who died during the voyage, had been suffering
greatly from severe pains in the head.  He had been told by a lady that
sometimes great relief was obtained in such cases by rubbing brandy upon
the head.  Soon after giving this advice the lady was walking down the
saloon where there were a number of passengers and stewards, when she was
astonished by hearing the poor invalid calling after her in the most
excited manner, and to the no small wonderment of the passengers, “Miss,
Miss, did you say brandy or whiskey?”  On one occasion the doctor was
examining this patient, when the poor fellow appealed to him to do what
he could for him, saying, “Doctor, I should like to have one more chance,
do you see, and if you can put this old crazy machine together again and
make it run once more I shall take it—_as a personal favour_!”  Before he
became dangerously ill the invalid was in the same cabin with one of my
friends, who one night was considerably disturbed by his dreadful
coughing, varied at intervals by strong language respecting the cough,
which, he declared, did not belong to him.  “It’s not mine, I never had a
cough, it’s my head that’s wrong—this cough belongs to some other fellow;
what’s it bothering me for?” and when some ladies gently remonstrated
with him he said, “Look here, now, I guess it’s just as natural for me to
swear as it is for you to pray!”  His end came suddenly at last, and in a
few hours after, in the early morning, his remains were

    “In the deep bosom of the ocean buried.”

We sighted the entrance to the magnificent harbour of San Francisco at
daybreak on a beautiful morning at the end of April, and when we
approached it the sun had just risen, bathing the whole scene in a flood
of golden light, fully justifying its name, “The Golden Gate.”  In a
short time the city came in view, reminding me very forcibly of
Sheffield, from the dense masses of smoke which hung over a large portion
of it, for San Francisco is an important manufacturing place.  Soon we
were boarded by a motley crew, composed of Custom House officers,
hotel-touts, porters, agents for the railway, and a number of keen-eyed
gentry, desirous of earning a cent anyway, honest or otherwise.  We had
decided upon going to the famous Palace Hotel, and having found the
agent, placed our luggage under his care, receiving checks for it, and,
locking our cabin, proceeded on shore, where we found the most sumptuous
omnibus we had ever seen waiting to convey passengers to the hotel.



CHAPTER VIII.


The Palace Hotel in San Francisco is quite a town in itself, containing
as it does over a thousand rooms, and with rarely less than a thousand
inhabitants, including servants, only a limited number of the latter,
however, living in the house.  The establishment has its own gas-works,
four artesian wells, affording an abundant supply of the purest water; it
also possesses a thoroughly good fire-brigade, and an efficient system of
police.  There are five hydraulic lifts for the conveyance of guests and
luggage to each floor of the house.  The rooms on the ground floor are
25ft. high, and of corresponding size, the breakfast room being 110ft. by
53ft., the dining room 150ft. by 55ft., the walls being hung with
excellent copies of the best works of the great masters.  The corridors
are lined and paved with white marble, and the grand staircase is of the
same material.

The bedrooms are very large and airy, and they all have comfortable
dressing-rooms attached, with hot and cold water supply, and with a dozen
beautiful towels—a very refreshing sight to the voyager who has been
cooped up for the previous month in the limited space allotted to
passengers on an ocean steamer.  The bedrooms have baths adjoining them,
each bath being arranged for two rooms; there is also a service-room on
each landing, where a dusky negro is always in attendance.  Upon each
landing there is a tube for the conveyance of letters for the post direct
into the letter-box at the general office.  There is also a pneumatic
despatch-tube for the conveyance of messages and parcels to and from any
point on the different floors.  Upon the garden floor of the hotel there
is an arcade promenade 12ft. wide, with entrances to all the shops under
the hotel, upon the street level, each shop having a show window upon
this promenade.  There are three inner courts, the centre one being
140ft. by 84ft., covered with glass of the same height as the roof of the
hotel.  It has a carriage and promenade entrance from the street of 44ft.
in width, and a circular carriage way of 54ft. in diameter, which is
surrounded by a marble-tiled promenade and a tropical garden.  The garden
is well supplied with exotic plants, statuary, and fountains.  Around
this centre court and upon every storey there is an open gallery from
which all the bedrooms are entered, and from which they receive light and
fresh air.  The dining rooms are fitted with a large number of small
tables for parties of from four to eight persons, an arrangement very
much superior to the long tables in most _salles à manger_.

There are about four hundred waiters, one-fourth only being white men,
the rest negroes.  The latter seem specially adapted for waiting, being
active and nimble, and seeming to anticipate every wish.  They receive £1
per week wages and their board, but lodge away from the house.  A fresh
bill of fare is printed daily for each meal, and the variety of food is
very great, there being a choice of about seventy dishes at dinner.  In
the kitchen are twenty-seven French cooks, besides assistants—a
sufficient guarantee for the excellent manner in which the food is
prepared.

There is a splendid laundry in the house, where the washing is done by
fifty Chinese washer_men_, and certainly never was linen more exquisitely
got up than here.  These Celestials are specially successful in all kinds
of starching requiring a smooth polished surface, such as shirt fronts.
The mode in which they apply the starch is quite novel, for having taken
a mouthful they blow it out on to the article in a continuous fine spray,
while their hands are occupied in ironing.

The servants take their meals in _table d’hote_ fashion, being waited on
by a batch of their fellow servants, and everything is conducted with the
greatest possible regularity and order.  I was much pleased to find that
all the gas and water fittings, also the hydraulic lifts and pumps, were
supplied by English makers, and were such as to command the admiration of
everybody.

An American gentleman, hearing me speak of the hotel, asked me how I
liked it?  I told him I was greatly delighted with it; that it was a
palace, indeed, in all its arrangements, but that in one respect I had
been not a little astonished at what I had seen there—the presence of the
extreme of civilisation face to face with a very close approach to
barbarism.  “How is that,” said he.  “Why,” I replied, “you are only
supplied with one knife and fork at meals; each guest has to dip his
fishy knife into the butter, and the same process has to be gone through
in taking salt and mustard; and seeing it is the fashion amongst the
American guests to put the knife into their mouths, the idea is not
pleasant.”

I referred, too, to another peculiarity of the Americans arising, I
believe, from their extensive use of the Virginian weed in chewing, and I
said that the guests at the Palace Hotel, in passing through its marble
halls, had not the same excuse for their conduct that the old Greek
philosopher had when he was being shown over the palace by Crœsus, and
when he excused himself for an unparalleled act of rudeness by saying
“that such was the magnificence on every hand that the face of the king
was the meanest thing that presented itself,” for the proprietor of the
hotel had made the most ample provision for the national habit—a
provision which was, however, very generally disregarded.

The city of San Francisco is exceedingly well situated, and possesses
many handsome streets, extensive hotels, and public buildings, but in
none of these respects, save only in hotels, is it equal to Melbourne,
though the evidences of great business activity and prosperity are much
greater in the former city.

The day after I arrived at the hotel I was surprised at receiving the
following letter:—“Dear Tangye,—Should you wish to see me I am to be
found at the above address, or a letter addressed to me, Box 339, Post
Office, will reach me promptly.  My wife is dead.  A. J. C. Jarratt.”
The name was quite strange to me, so I decided _not_ to go, but to send a
friend.  My friend found the address, which was a wretched room at the
top of a lofty pile of buildings, and after a few minutes’ conversation
with the man he saw there, was very glad to get into the street again,
not liking the aspect of things.  The following day, whilst seated at
dinner with my friends, a waiter came to us and asked which was Dr. L—.
On being told, he said a messenger from the chief of police was in
waiting, wishing to see him.  I looked at the doctor and asked him what
he had been doing.  Having finished our dinner we adjourned to the office
and found the officer, who said his chief had received a telegram from a
man in some town a hundred miles inland requesting him to send “his
friend the Doctor” up to him as soon as possible.  Of course my friend,
knowing nothing whatever of the man, declined to go up country.  I
mentioned these polite attentions to a gentleman who was dining at the
same table, and who I found was the leading lawyer in the city.  He told
me it was a favourite dodge with the sharpers, and that they sometimes
caught a “flat” in this way.  On the arrival of ocean steamers it is the
custom to publish the names of the passengers in the evening papers,
which accounts for the familiarity of these fellows with the names of
strangers.  We had many amusing chats with this lawyer.  He remarked one
day that I must have met with a deal of “character” in travelling.
“Yes,” I said, “I had, both good and bad.”  “Wa-a-l, I guess its better
to meet with a _bad_ character than none at all.”  Speaking of the
neighbouring State of Nevada, which was still in a very unsettled
condition, he said a friend of his was Governor there, and that he “was
6ft. 6in. in height, and had a number three head and a number fifteen
foot, for,” said he, “I guess weight of foot is more important there than
weight of brain.”

There are sharp men of business in the city who do not require offices in
which to carry on their business.  If you are walking in the streets with
a friend, and, meeting someone else, stop for a chat, you will see a
’cute-looking fellow stop, and though he appears to be intent on
something on the opposite side of the street, you will note that he is
leaning his ear towards you, doubtless with the laudable intention of
gaining a little information.  On one occasion we met one of these
individuals.  He kept his ear open, and then struck in with “I guess you
are going through to England.  I can put you up to the best way of doing
it and calculate I can save you from forty to fifty dollars on the job.”
We say we are much obliged, and will perhaps “call again.”  Then as you
proceed along the streets attenuated fellows, with scanty, pointed beards
and Mother Shipton hats, accost you with “Going east, gentlemen?  Guess
you’ll want to change some money.  Come with me, gentlemen, and I’ll take
you to the right place.”  “Thank you,” we say, “not to-day.”  “Wa-a-l,
guess exchange will go against you to-morrow, gentlemen.”  Observing on
the door of a very handsome house a brass name-plate with the name “Mrs.
Doctor Sanders,” our guide informed us that there were many lady doctors
in the city, and that they had very extensive practice.

The Chinese are very numerous in San Francisco, there being more than
40,000 of them there.  At the time of my visit, the feeling of the
rowdies ran very high against the Celestials, and threats of wholesale
massacre were freely used against them.  John Chinaman is a most
industrious, frugal man, spending very little upon his living, and
nothing upon his pleasures, always excepting his infatuation for opium.
His needs being few, he can afford to work for very small pay, and thus
comes into competition with the white workman.  This is the head and
front of his offending, but it is aggravated by the fact of his being
equally skilful as an artificer.  While the artisans have their special
grievances about the Chinese, the wealthy classes have theirs also.  It
is true “John” does his master’s work well and cheaply, but, as I have
said before, he is not a spending man; his sole object is to get what the
Yankees call “his little pile” as quickly as possible, and then return to
his native land.  Nor is this surprising when we consider that every
Chinaman leaves his little “Min-ne” behind him when he quits the Flowery
Land, it being a very rare thing for a woman to leave China.

The Chinese quarter is full of interest; the people swarm like bees, and
live in a frightfully overcrowded state.  The butchers’ and barbers’
shops are the most numerous and most interesting, the former being filled
with a quantity of dreadful-looking little portions of meat, but it would
puzzle the most learned to say from what animal they were cut.  The
barbers’ shops are situated in the basements of the houses, with an open
front towards the street, and they are very numerous, for the Chinese are
close shavers.  On looking down you may see a number of men seated in a
variety of positions, each one smoking a pipe of opium, while the barber
is occupied in shaving every portion of his head and face, excepting, of
course, his beloved pig-tail.  The swell Chinee is very particular that
every hair shall be removed, and so clever do the operators become that,
by means of tiny razors, they can shave the inside of the nose.  Some of
the pig-tails are of enormous length, and sometimes the white rowdies
attack the Chinese and cut their pig-tails off.

          [Picture: The Chinaman (from a sketch by the Author)]

When a man has an especially fine one, he either rolls it up at the back
of his head and fastens it with hairpins, or else tucks it inside his
blouse.  I noticed one of the latter in particular, a glimpse of which
would have delighted Darwin himself.  The owner had evidently let down
his back hair before putting on his blouse, and consequently the
pig-tail, which disappeared at the back of the neck, emerged from under
the blouse and extended to his heels.

Some of our party, wishing to explore the Chinese quarter by night,
engaged a detective to accompany them, it being unsafe to go unless so
escorted.  The guide first took them over a lodging house, in which some
hundred Chinamen were stowed away, literally almost as thick as herrings
in a barrel.  Not only was the floor thickly covered, but suspended above
it was a layer in hammocks, some smoking opium and others sleeping, none,
however, taking the slightest notice of the intruding party.

                         [Picture: Little Min-ne]

On visiting the Chinese theatre during the evening they found
preparations being made to celebrate a Celestial wedding.  This decided
them to stay and see the ceremony, which was attended by a vast number of
Chinese, the theatre being crowded in every part.  After the ceremony
most of the spectators formed in the procession, which escorted the happy
pair to their home.  My friends also visited the Joss Houses and
inspected the queer-looking gods contained in them.

While making some purchases in a Chinese shop it was necessary to give my
address.  I wrote it out on a card thus—TANG-YE, upon which the Celestial
at once claimed me as a countryman of his.  I disabused his mind of that
idea by putting my fingers to the outer corners of my eyes and pretending
to extend them in an upward direction, the absence of which peculiarity
showed conclusively that I was not of the true Mongol type.  Curiously,
however, on afterwards consulting a gazetteer, I found that there is in
China a city named TANG-Y, containing over 30,000 inhabitants.

The Chinese are accused of having brought with them a number of
objectionable practices, but to anyone possessing a knowledge of the
lower classes in American cities, it will not appear possible that the
Chinese can be very much worse than they.

Most of the traffic in San Francisco is carried on by the tramways, and
it may not be out of place to put intending visitors on their guard with
respect to a little peculiarity in their management.  It is advisable to
tender the exact fare if possible, for if you give a larger sum the
balance is returned to you, not in cash, but in tickets available for
future rides, which you may have no opportunity of taking.  The hackney
carriages are very fine, being almost equal to English private carriages.
Most of those I saw were splendidly horsed with a pair of magnificent
animals, generally black.  The lowest fare taken is ten shillings, but I
am bound to say you can have full value for your money in the time and
the accommodation given you.

On Sunday morning the city presents a very lively aspect.  The
fire-brigades and volunteers parade the streets, preceded by their bands,
and thousands of people go by tramway and other vehicles to see the
famous sea-lions at the entrance to the bay.  From the grounds in front
of Cliff House they are seen on the rocks below in large numbers,
tumbling about and making a noise like the barking of dogs, but so loud
as to be heard from a distance of nearly a mile.

The climate is a delightful one, the temperature being singularly
equable, ranging, as it does, in summer from 60° to 70°, and in winter
from 50° to 60° Fahr.  Indeed the weather is so beautiful that one cannot
help referring to it frequently, but the invariable reply to any such
observation is, “Well, I guess we shall have three months just the same
right slick away.”

                   [Picture: Seal Rocks, San Francisco]

After nearly a fortnight’s stay at the Palace Hotel, enjoying its good
fare, we began to think it time to move eastward, as we were getting too
luxurious in our habits.  My friend the lawyer, however, remarked that we
need have no fear on that account, as the fare on the Pacific Railway
would cure the severest attack of gout.  Before leaving San Francisco we
met our old friend “Mister” twice.  From a report in the newspapers we
learnt that he had been brought before the magistrates and fined for
carrying fire-arms in the streets.  “Mister” told us the police had taken
all his money on the pretence of taking care of it for him.  When we last
saw him he was leaning against a lamp-post, helplessly drunk.

                     [Picture: The Last of “Mister”]

The great excursion from San Francisco is of course to the Yosemite
Valley, but we were compelled to forego the pleasure of making it on
account of our visit being too early in the season.  Some of our
fellow-voyagers from the Colonies ventured to go, but, unfortunately,
they met with a serious carriage accident, owing to the roughness of the
road, caused by the breaking up of the frost.

In order to secure a good seat in the train going East, it is necessary
to make arrangements a few days before starting.  Tickets can be obtained
at a score of places in the city, and should be got as soon as possible;
and in order to save all unnecessary trouble with the luggage during the
journey, sufficient for use in travelling should be separately packed,
and the remainder handed over to the Baggage Master, who has an office in
the hotel, and who will give checks in exchange, and undertake to deliver
it at any hotel or railway station in New York, or any other place in the
States that may be named.  By attending to this overnight, immense
trouble is saved, for, if left until the morning of departure, each
traveller has to look after his own baggage amid a scene of the wildest
confusion, and quite unprotected from the terrible heat and dust.  It was
with a sense of great relief that we began to move out of the station,
and to feel that at last we were fairly started on our ride across the
Rocky Mountains.  The railway ride for the first two hundred and fifty
miles is a splendid one, through the magnificent Sacramento Valley, which
I should think is fifteen or twenty miles wide, and is most fertile.
Here corn is grown year after year without any manuring being required.
In many “cuttings” through which we passed the soil was twenty feet deep.
We passed fields hundreds of acres in extent, with nice houses, orchards,
and gardens, surrounded by fine oaks and elms, making the country look
like a park for a hundred miles.  The corn, which in many places was over
ten feet high, was fast ripening, and its glorious golden colour was
often charmingly varied by immense patches of Marigold, Eschscholtzia,
Lupins, and another beautiful flower which we did not recognise, all in
full bloom.  We also saw our old Tasmanian friend the Eucalyptus
(commonly called the Gum Tree), and many of the quaint Doré-like dead
Blue Gums, looking white and ghostly.

         [Picture: The Eucalyptus (from a sketch by the Author)]

This is a magnificent State.  A gentleman remarked to me that when the
richness of the soil is exhausted there remains untold mineral wealth
below.  The people, too, are very energetic, and there is abundance of
capital; so much so that a moneylender travelling in our carriage
complained that it is difficult to get fifteen per cent. per annum now
when some twelve years ago he could easily obtain five per cent. per
month.

Soon after leaving Sacramento the track ascends the mountains and passes
through the old gold-diggings so much spoken of thirty years ago.  They
are visible all around for miles, and some are still being worked.  All
the abandoned ones have been re-worked by the Chinese, who have got a
great deal out of them.  By and by we stopped at a station where there
were several dreadful-looking Indians, some with their faces covered with
red ochre and with feathers in their hair; others dressed in scarlet
blankets, tall white hats, one-legged trousers and moccasins.  They all
looked very grave and stolid.  I did my best to make one old fellow laugh
as he stood on the platform with his arms folded, but his face was stony,
and he remained steadfast and unmoveable.  Their hair is like whalebone,
matted and shaggy; their noses and mouths are broad, and the women look
uglier than the men.  Several of the women were carrying their _papooses_
(babies) suspended over their shoulders, with the legs swathed like
Neapolitan children.  The only occupation of these degraded creatures is
begging and stealing.

While we were passing through swampy tract the large bull-frogs were
giving a croaking concert in full chorus, and a rare noise they made.

Soon we began to sight the snow mountains, and by nine o’clock we were
right amongst the pine forests and the snow, and very beautiful the scene
looked with the moon shining on it all.

Life on board a “Pullman” train is almost more peculiar than life on
board ship.  My party were fortunate enough to secure a cabin partitioned
off from the rest of the carriage; but the remainder of the sleeping
berths have no partitions, being separated merely by curtains.
Inexperienced travellers are apt to forget this, and sometimes cause much
amusement in consequence.  One morning I heard a young lady complaining
to her mamma that she could not find her stockings, a remark eliciting
numerous offers of assistance from all parts of the carriage.  A
neighbouring compartment was occupied by a lady and gentleman, the former
of whom was deaf, and with the peculiarity often observable in deaf
people, she imagined everyone else was deaf as well; the consequence
being that there were no secrets in that cabin.  Every carriage has a
negro attendant, whose duty it is to make the beds and attend to the
lavatories, the ladies’ and gentlemen’s lavatories being at opposite ends
of the carriage.  At half-past nine o’clock Sambo begins to prepare the
beds, and soon after ten almost everyone has retired, and, as fortunately
there are no decks to be paced, sleep soon comes to the weary.
Arrangements are made for three meals a day, the train stopping at
stations convenient for the purpose, and notice being given half-an-hour
before.  Half-an-hour is allowed for each meal, the invariable charge
being one dollar.  As the train stops a general stampede is made toward
the dining-room, the position of which is unmistakable, for at the door
stands a negro, with a face devoid of expression, vigorously sounding a
gong.  As each person passes in he pays his dollar, and makes a rush to
the end of the room, where the cook is usually stationed.  And now happy
is he who possesses the Yankee’s qualification for a good diner-out, for
unless he has a long arm, a quick eye, and a silent tongue, he is likely
to come off with much less than a dollar’s worth.  The experienced
traveller, before sitting down, gathers all the dishes before him, within
arm’s length, and then proceeds to attack them _seriatim_, or sometimes
all at once.  Indeed, I think a man of naturally generous disposition,
would be made utterly selfish by twelve months’ travelling on American
railroads.  As soon as the half-hour has gone, the guard calls out with a
shrill, nasal, Yankee twang, “All aboard,” and we once more continue our
journey.

Happening one day to say to a fellow-passenger that I was from
Birmingham, an American gentleman hearing me came across the carriage,
and, raising his hat, said: “I _must_ shake hands with a person coming
from the city which returns John Bright to Parliament.”

The Pacific Railroad is a single track, and, although a wonderful
engineering work, is not by any means a substantial or
confidence-inspiring line, if judged by English standards.  The rails are
old and worn, the bridges and viaducts very lightly constructed, and
almost always of wood.  I observed in several cases that the carriages
were actually wider than the viaducts, many of which are open between the
rails.  It is hardly to be wondered at that awful accidents sometimes
occur.  The train in which we were travelling narrowly escaped falling
into a ravine 120 feet deep.  One dark night, after we had all retired to
rest, we were awakened by continued whistling and ringing of bells.  It
was in vain that we inquired of the guards and attendants as to what was
going on, for they, like their brethren all the world over, would give no
information.  One thing, however, they could not hide from us, for we
found we were being taken across a viaduct one carriage at a time, and as
we crossed we could see lights moving about at a great depth below.  On
arriving at Omaha, two days later, we found a full report of the
occurrence in the papers.  It appears that the viaduct had been
discovered to be in an unsafe condition, some of its timbers having been
partially burnt, and it was a matter of discussion whether we should be
allowed to cross at all; it being ultimately determined, as I have said,
to take one car over at a time.  Ours was the last train that went over,
for before daylight the whole structure had fallen with a tremendous
crash.  The Indians were on the war-path at the time, and it was supposed
that the work of destruction was theirs.  The railway here runs through
some of the most magnificent scenery in the world.  Sometimes its course
lies through narrow valleys, or cañons, where there is just room for the
railway and the river, sometimes through immense pine forests, and then
again on a mere shelf cut in the face of the granite mountain, until the
point called “Cape Horn” is reached.  This is the turning-point between
east and west, and soon afterwards the greatest elevation is attained,
8,200 feet.  About sixty miles of the more exposed portion of the road is
covered with sheds, to protect it from the snow.  This result, however,
is not attained without considerable discomfort to the passengers, as the
carriages become filled with smoke and dust while passing through.

One of the passengers on our train was an old man who had not crossed the
country since he went out to the far west some twenty-six years
before—long before the railway had been thought of.  The party with which
he then travelled was so large that it had to be split into detachments
for the convenience of pasturage.  One night his section was attacked by
Indians, who killed several of the party and drove off most of the horses
and cattle.  The old man had for many years been a trapper in the Indian
country and had invested his hard-won earnings in horses which he was
taking out west for the purpose of trade, and he was not disposed to lose
them all at one fell swoop without making a bold dash for their recovery.
His plan of operations was soon settled, and in the evening he set off in
pursuit with half-a-dozen picked men, each with his rifle and a good
store of ammunition.  After some hours they came upon the scent of the
Indians, and moving cautiously forward amongst the scrub, presently saw
them around their fires busily engaged in dividing the spoils of the
morning.  The trapper being a first-rate marksman, it was agreed he
should do all the firing, while the others loaded and handed up the
rifles as fast as required.  Every shot told, and the redskins, judging
from the rapid firing that the whole party of white men were upon them,
made a regular stampede, leaving horses, and cattle, and other spoil
behind them.  So, painfully marching on, they came at last to the Mormon
settlement and on to the Salt Lake City, where they were subjected to the
most cruel treatment at the hands of the “Saints.”  These people told the
travellers it was impossible to get to California by the route they were
taking, as the country was swarming with hostile Indians, and they
undertook to show them a better way by which they would get there in
fifteen days.  Many suspected treachery, and a consultation was held,
which came to no definite conclusion, except in the case of one man, who,
in the heat of debate, was shot dead.  It was ultimately decided to adopt
the Mormon advice, and as the route did not admit of wagons, they tried
to sell them to the “Saints,” who, of course, would not buy, knowing they
would have them for nothing before long.  Many of the travellers burnt
their wagons and harness rather than that the Mormons should have them,
but the majority abandoned theirs, and set out without them.  Instead of
fifteen days the journey took thirty-nine, and only a few survived it,
most of the party dying by the way, either by the hand of the Indians or
from fatigue.

For about a thousand miles the railway is open to the prairie, the
consequence being that frequent accidents occur through cattle straying
upon the track.  I counted more than twenty carcases of these
unfortunates in one day, and on one occasion, while sitting on the steps
of the Pullman car, I felt a sudden check, and immediately after the body
of a cow flew past.  The herds are looked after by men with lassoes,
riding very fleet horses.  American railroads being much less protected
from stray animals than those in England, the locomotives are provided
with an apparatus called a “cow-catcher,” which consists of an iron
framework projecting in front and inclined downwards as near to the rails
as possible.  The contrivance is successful in moving most living
obstacles from the track.  For instance, when a cow gets between the
rails and sees the train approaching, it becomes dazed, and the iron
frame striking the lower portion of the legs takes it up readily.  But
with a bull it is quite different: when his lordship sees his enemy
approaching he puts his chin down upon his fore-feet and waits the onset
with a confidence not by any means always misplaced, for in this position
his head and feet form a wedge which, becoming inserted beneath the iron
frame, frequently throws the engine back upon the train, causing serious
accidents.  When at Ogden I saw the remains of a goods train which had
been wrecked in this way a week before, the engine drivers being killed,
also two stow-aways, or “dead-heads,” as the Yankees call them, who had
secreted themselves under one of the carriages.

                           [Picture: Salt Lake]

Waking one morning we found ourselves in a most awfully desolate country,
with scarcely a sign of vegetation—a veritable dry and thirsty land,
through which we travelled all day.  Towards evening we came to the
alkali country, and the plains looked as though they were covered with
snow.  This is a fearful place, where, before the construction of the
railway, many poor emigrants have lain down to die.  Soon after, we
skirted the margin of the Great Salt Lake and entered Brigham Young’s
dominions, passing his first town, “Corinné.”  This town was founded by
the Gentiles after Brigham turned them out of the Salt Lake City, but he
soon drove them farther off.

We left the train at Odgen in order to pay a short visit to the Salt Lake
City, which is situated thirty-six miles off, and is approached by a
railway belonging to the Saints.  For beauty of situation Salt Lake City
is almost unrivalled.  It lies in a basin more than twenty miles in
diameter, and is surrounded by mountains, some of which are 12,000 feet
high, and most of them covered with perpetual snow.  At the time of our
visit the fruit-trees were in full bloom, and, as each house is
surrounded by its garden, the city occupies a large extent of ground,
presenting a beautiful appearance from the United States camp, which
stands on an elevation commanding the whole city, about two miles off.  A
portion of the old mud wall, about ten feet high, built by the Mormons to
resist the attack of the Indians, still remains standing.  Several of the
houses are exceedingly well built, and the gardens kept in excellent
order; one in particular I was much struck with, and remarked to our
guide that it was the brightest and best kept place I had seen since
leaving England.  He told me it belonged to an Englishman who had left
for his native country on the previous day.  Curiously enough, when I
returned home, I found this man was a brother of my butcher, and was then
on a visit home.  We observed two ladies sitting in the front of the
house engaged in needlework, and were told that they were the two wives
of the English Mormon.  It was very noticeable that these ladies sat at a
considerable distance apart, cordiality (unless it be of hatred) not
being a characteristic of these Mormon wives in their relations with each
other.  At the time of our visit the “Prophet” was down south, looking
out for a new location for the Saints, in view of the threatened
difficulties with the Central Government.  We visited the Tabernacle, and
saw the preparations for the new temple, to which the deluded of all
nations continue to contribute, although it is exceedingly doubtful that
the building will be carried to completion.  The man who showed us over
the Tabernacle used to work in a London factory; but he told us with a
curious twinkle in his eye that the “new job” paid him much the best.  At
a short distance from the city there is a sulphur spring, of considerable
volume, proceeding from the side of the mountains; the temperature of the
water is such that eggs can be boiled in it.  We slept at Ogden that
night in order to be in good time for securing places in the train going
east in the morning.  When the hotel bill was presented I tendered
English gold in payment, having disposed of my U.S. currency.  The
landlord refused to take it, saying, “He would not have the — British
gold.”  I explained to him that I had no other money, but to no purpose,
so, as the train was almost due, I told him I would pay him when I came
that way again, but was not sure when that would be.  He quietly said, “I
guess I’ll take your gold,” much to the amusement of the bystanders.  At
the station here is a printed notice cautioning travellers to “BEWARE OF
BOGUS TICKET SELLERS.”

For three days after leaving Ogden we travelled through the snow, passing
through a series of cañons or gorges, which narrow at the base until
there is just room for the brawling stream which runs along the bottom.
The railway in such cases is either excavated on one side of the gorge or
carried on trestles over the stream.  The rocks on the mountain sides,
mostly of red sandstone, are very bold and of strange shapes.  Amongst
them is a very weird-looking group called “The Witches.”  Another group,
known as “The Buttes,” bears a most striking resemblance to a line of
strong fortifications commanding the valley.

                         [Picture: Monument Rock]

We saw these at sunset, and the effect of the evening light upon the red
sandstone was very fine.  In the same neighbourhood is the celebrated
Devil’s Slide; it is formed by the earth being gradually washed away from
between two lines of vertical strata about 20ft. apart.  It is some
hundreds of feet in length, and descends into the river.  This valley was
the route taken by the Western Pioneers, and is marked here and there by
solitary graves with crosses at their heads.

                       [Picture: The Devil’s Slide]

The whole 8,000 feet descent from the summit to the eastern plains is
made in about four hours.  The steam is turned off, the brakes turned on,
and down we go.  As we were preparing to descend I remarked to the negro
attendant that I supposed we must trust the engineer now?  “No, sah,”
said Sambo, “I guess we must trust de ole man up above,” pointing to the
skies.



CHAPTER IX.


On reaching Chicago we left “the overland train,” with the object of
paying a short visit to Niagara.  The last stage of our long ride was
from Omaha, during which we crossed the Missouri and Mississippi.  There
being three competing lines to Chicago the pace became greatly
accelerated, so much so that during a considerable portion of the long
ride it was almost impossible to stand on one’s feet, and the country
being very dry, the train was enveloped in a cloud of dust almost the
whole of the way.  We had, however, one compensation, for attached to the
train was a well-appointed dining-car, with first-rate cuisine.  The
viands were of the choicest quality, and in great variety.  Moreover, the
speed of the train was slackened during meals, an arrangement affording a
degree of comfort unknown on the Pacific Line.  The bill of fare is a
curiosity in its way, being garnished with appetising mottoes and
sentiments, such as, “As you journey through life live by the way,” “Eat
and be satisfied,” and concluding with an expression of belief that
passengers would appreciate this new feature of “Life on the Road.”

In going through Chicago we were much surprised by the fine and
substantial-looking buildings in every part of the city.  There are fifty
to one hundred streets, any one of which is equal to the best in London;
indeed, it struck me as being more of a city than any place I had ever
been in.  We observed a whole block of buildings, including a bank on the
ground floor, and offices above, being removed bodily without any
disturbance of the business operations going on in it.  The water for the
city supply is taken from Lake Michigan through a pipe which extends two
miles into the lake.  The capacity of the pumping engines is seventy-five
millions of gallons per day, the greatest demand being forty-five
millions.  During the last few years there have been many disastrous
fires in Chicago, directly traceable to the general employment of timber
not only in buildings, but for the side walks and roadways.  The broad
streets referred to above are, however, constructed of a fine
warm-coloured sandstone, and all the new streets are being made of the
same material.  Nevertheless, a considerable number of timber houses
remain, constituting a standing danger to the city.  While in Chicago I
found my passport useful.  On going to the bank to get some money on my
Letter of Credit the manager told me they had not received a copy of my
signature from the bank in England, and that in its absence they could
not honour my draft.  It was in vain that I showed him my watch and other
articles having my name engraved upon them.  He looked at them as though
he thought there were various ways of getting possession of such
articles.  I told him I regretted I had not been born with my name on my
person, but I was not accountable for the omission.  I then thought of my
passport, and although he appeared to think that it was possible to
obtain possession of that improperly, he accepted it with the remark that
“even that is not conclusive,” for it should have had a description of my
person.  We stayed at the Grand Pacific Hotel, which formed a great
contrast to the Palace Hotel at San Francisco, being uncomfortable and
badly administered.

At Detroit we cross the frontier into Canada, travelling over the Great
Western Railway to Niagara.  This line was constructed by English
contractors, and the superiority of the work is manifested in the smooth,
steady motion of the carriages.  Compared with the lines we had
previously traversed this was most comfortable.  We pass through London,
Paris, and other places with equally celebrated names, greatly enjoying
the forest scenery, numerous clearings and bright little homesteads
dotted over the country; and for the first time since leaving England
seeing lovely green fields such as we have at home.  At Niagara we
stopped at the famous Clifton House, where we were joined by friends from
England.

Our impressions of Niagara were those common to most visitors—first, a
feeling of disappointment, soon succeeded, however, by an ever-increasing
sense of the immensity and magnificence of the Falls, which grows upon
one the more one sees them.

A sentiment of disgust, however, is inspired by the ruthless desecration
of the most beautiful spots by Yankee manufacturers, who have chosen such
picturesque positions for their smoky factories.

                   [Picture: Under the Falls, Niagara]

Another annoyance constantly experienced is from the peripatetic
photographer, who endeavours to persuade you that you are greater than
the “Falls.”  The Falls, indeed, are made to seem a mere background to
your photograph, in which he is careful to show you nearest the camera,
and hence proportionately by far the most imposing object.

To get into Canada we have to cross the suspension bridge.  Going over
one day we purchased about £1 worth of photographs of Canadian scenery.
On returning with them we were accosted by the American customs officer,
who mulcted us in nearly twenty shillings duty.  On entering his office
to obtain a receipt we observed a “six-shooter” at his right hand,
presumably for the purpose of persuasion.  On leaving the place I met an
American policeman and told him what a shabby transaction it was for the
representatives of so great a country.  He replied that he guessed the
officer must raise his salary.  I refrain from any attempt to describe
the mighty Falls of Niagara.

On our way to New York we travelled by railway to Albany, the capital of
the State of New York, passing through Syracuse, Rome, and Utica, along
the shores of Lake Ontario, although from the lowering of the ground and
the abundance of trees we were unable to see the lake; thence alongside
the Falls River, through very charmingly diversified country with
numerous valleys going up from the waterside, well-timbered, and here and
there a clearing with open green fields.  The houses are in most cases
mean-looking plank erections, presenting a very weather-beaten
appearance, some painted a very dark red colour.  In the evening we
reached Albany, an old Dutch town of over two hundred years, and very
Dutch-looking it is with its queer red-brick houses, wooden pavements,
and trees along the streets, and frequent peeps of the river here and
there.  Amongst the finest public buildings are those devoted to the
national schools, a true gauge of the importance the citizens attach to
the education of the people.  On our way to New York we had an
opportunity of taking a day’s sail on the River Hudson in one of the
celebrated American river-boats.  Going on board we found ourselves on a
veritable floating palace.  The steamer was a three-decker, two of the
decks being covered with splendid carpets, and fitted with arm-chairs of
a most comfortable pattern, and with velvet-covered ottomans and couches
in all directions.  Taking up one of the books from the well-stocked
bookstall I saw it purported to be one of a series of standard works by
American authors, and on looking down the list I observed the names of
Tennyson, Barry Cornwall, and others.  Our American cousins were always
great at annexation, and the only wonder is they do not call their mother
tongue the “American language.”

The Americans seem anxious that everyone shall admit that the Hudson is
finer than any other river in the world.  I have been down the Elbe,
through the Saxon Switzerland, also down the Danube and the Rhine.  The
Hudson is far more beautiful than the Rhine.  The banks are thickly
wooded, and the villages and country houses prettily situated.  It is
true that the Hudson lacks the romantic associations of the Rhine, but
even in this respect it is not altogether wanting, for does it not
possess the Catskill Mountains, with their legend of Rip Van Winkle?  But
I like the Danube best; its banks are loftier and more rugged, and are
covered with pines, and from its comparative narrowness one can see both
sides at once.  Then again, the ancient towns and monasteries jutting out
on the spits of land are infinitely more interesting than the wooden
houses along the Hudson.  Again, the Elbe, especially in the Saxon
Switzerland, is decidedly more beautiful than the Hudson; but for all
this the latter is a river of which a nation may well be proud, and we
greatly enjoyed our sail upon it.

                 [Picture: The Pallisades, Hudson River]

On a subsequent visit to the Hudson we landed at West Point, the seat of
the celebrated military academy founded by Washington, where there are
some hundreds of students.  Our hotel was situated about two miles from
the academy, and overlooked the river from an eminence of about two
hundred feet.  The river can be seen for some miles winding between steep
banks on both sides.  The morning after our arrival was a Sunday, and the
church bells were ringing for service.  There are two opposition churches
here, but I have reason to believe they are very charitable to one
another; at all events their respective bell-ringers do not believe in
the jarring of the sects, for I notice that first one rings out
one—two—three—four; then a decent pause, and his neighbour likewise rings
out one—two—three—four, and so the celestial harmonies are not disturbed.

On the opposite bank of the river is a place historic in the annals of
the Revolution, for here it was that the American General Arnold was
stationed while he was carrying on his treasonable correspondence with
the ill-fated Major André.  Arnold was sitting at breakfast with his
officers and some guests when word was brought him that André was
captured as a spy by the Americans.  Knowing he would surely be
incriminated, Arnold pretended he was wanted below on urgent business,
and, going down to Beverley landing, he ordered his men to row him to the
British man-of-war lying in the river.  Poor André, it will be
remembered, was hanged by order of Washington.  His bust was placed in
Westminster Abbey; three times since then has it been mutilated by
miscreants.  Walking through the village we observed a mean-looking
tumble-down tenement, with an equally mean-looking signboard stuck upon
it, bearing this inscription:—“John Scales, Justice of the Peace, Notary
Public.”  His “Honour” was sitting inside, in his shirt-sleeves, with a
white apron on, while behind him on a shelf were a few old dry-as-dust
books, of the law I suppose.  The whole place looked totally at variance
with our ideas of the majesty of the law; indeed it suggested that
“justice” could be had for the buying, and that no one was expected to
pay much regard to the decision of such a court.  On returning to the
hotel I spoke of this functionary to the negro waiter, suggesting that he
_dealt_ in justice, “Yes, sah; I guess a dollar will go a long way with
him,” replied he.

               [Picture: John Scales, Justice of the Peace]

Ascending the mountain we came across an old man at work on the roads.
He was a German, having come to America in 1841.  He served in the
Mexican war, and one of his sons was killed in the war against the
Southern rebels.  The old man said it was hard work mending roads, and
that the winters were very severe, “but,” said he, “it is a free country,
and that makes up for all.  In Germany a man dares not open his mouth,
but here one can say what one likes.”

Passing by a farmyard our curiosity was aroused by seeing the stock of
poultry secured by the leg to the fence.  As we had often heard in our
travels in the States that this was “a great country,” we presume this
was an expedient adopted to prevent the fowls straying and being lost.
Of course, England being so small, such precautions are not necessary.

We returned to New York in another of the celebrated river-boats.

During my stay in the States there were two great subjects which
monopolised public attention.  These were the Centennial Exhibition which
had just been opened: and the wave of corruption among officials and
others which was sweeping over the land.  More space was occupied in the
Press by charges of malversation and fraud on the part of the officials,
from the President down to the lowest civil service clerks, and from them
through all grades of society, than with the Exhibition itself or with
any other subject, while the talk in the streets seemed to be about
nothing else.  In alluding to the unlawful gains made in this way by many
prominent citizens, a New York paper made use of a sentiment of Mark
Twain to the effect that whereas in times past folks used to say “poor
but honest,” now-a-days when you see a rich man who has accumulated money
in a proper way it is said that he is “rich but honest.”

I have travelled in many countries, but in almost everything have found
America twice as dear as any other country.  The charges are simply
monstrous.  Having to go from an hotel to the steam wharf, we were not
permitted to take our very modest amount of luggage in the omnibus with
us, although we had the vehicle all to ourselves; but the hotel people
insisted upon sending it in a special wagon, charging two dollars for
what a cabman in Birmingham would willingly have done for a shilling.  On
board the steamer we were charged six shillings each for a plain dinner,
without wine, which in England would not have cost more than 1s. 6d.
Bound books are equally dear.  Pocket volumes, containing not more than
one-sixth of the matter in a shilling volume of Chambers’ “Miscellany of
Entertaining Tracts,” were charged two shillings each.  Most of the
newspapers, also, are very inferior to, yet much dearer than, the English
papers.  Another form of extortion is to be found in the impossibility,
in many hotels, of obtaining information as to the sailing of
river-boats, departure of trains, etc., the only apparent explanation
being a desire to give “touts” and “loungers,” of whom there are many,
opportunities of extorting money.  These fellows seem to know nothing
unless they can hear the dollars chink, or see the dirty greenbacks (and
some of them are very dirty).  A fellow once gave me in change a dollar
note which was so filthy that scarcely a word was legible upon it.  It
looked as though it might contain smallpox or typhoid, so I asked him to
wash it.  He said he guessed he would—_for a dollar_.

Against all this, I am bound to say that the charges made by the
steamboat companies and most of the railways are exceedingly moderate,
and their arrangements in connection with baggage most convenient.  On
arriving at any of the large cities by river-boat, the agent of the
Luggage Express Company comes on board and takes possession of your
baggage, giving vouchers for it.  He also undertakes to collect any
baggage you may have sent to the City Railway Station from distant parts
of the country, and very soon after you arrive at your hotel it is
brought to you.  At the landing stages in such cities as New York there
are numbers of cabs, mostly driven by Irishmen, and when they find you
have disposed of your luggage and do not require their services, they
give vent to their disgust in no measured terms, and if the traveller is
a Britisher, he is soon reminded of the fact.

The mode of dealing with baggage on the railway is almost equally
convenient.  The following will give some idea of it.  You are
travelling, say, from Aberdeen to Penzance, intending ultimately to
proceed by way of London to Dover, and do not require the bulk of your
luggage till you arrive at the latter place.  On leaving Aberdeen, the
Baggage Master takes your superfluous luggage, putting brass labels upon
it, thus—

                               ABERDEEN—DOVER.
                                     846.

giving you corresponding labels, after which you have no further occasion
to trouble yourself in the matter until you get to Dover.

We visited the Centennial Exhibition at Philadelphia for the purpose of
inspecting the various productions corresponding to our own, hoping,
indeed expecting, to find something which would repay us for coming.  We
were, indeed, repaid, but in a sense totally opposed to what we expected,
for we found that so far from Americans being in advance of the English,
they were, in many cases, taking credit for so-called “improvements”
(claiming them as novelties), which we had been familiar with, and had
used in our own works many years before.  They appear to be strangely
unaware of what has been done in European countries, and a single
instance will illustrate this.  The machinery in the Exhibition was
driven by a single large steam-engine.  The newspapers made a great deal
of this engine, declaring that it was the largest in the world, and that
it had been made in the smallest State—Rhode Island.  An American
engineer with evident pride took us to see the big engine, which, after
all, had a cylinder of only 70in. diameter.  We told him that
five-and-twenty years before a small engineering firm in Cornwall,
England, had made several engines with cylinders 144in. in diameter, and
which are yet at work.

We were permitted to inspect some of the most important engineering
establishments, and found the tools of such an inferior character that
our only wonder was that they could produce either good or cheap work.
In most cases the floors of the workshops were inches deep in ferruginous
dust.  Under such conditions every time a heavy casting is dropped on the
floor a cloud of dust must rise, and entering the bearings of the tools,
cut them up badly.  We found many of the tools actually wedged up because
of this.

An American manufacturer speaking to me of a visit he had paid to the
Exhibition in company with his foreman, told me how astonished the latter
was at the excellence of the European exhibits.  He said he had no idea
they could make the things half so well, “for,” he said, “they are almost
as good as ours,” and, I added, “only one half the cost.”

The agricultural machinery was exhibited in a separate building erected
specially for its reception, and here the Americans were unmistakably far
ahead of all competitors.

At the time of our visit several consignments of calicoes had been made
to England and to various British markets, and sold at prices
considerably below what they could be produced at by English
manufacturers.  This incursion occasioned great disquietude in England
until the cause was manifested—viz., overproduction.  On this point I
read an article in a New York Protectionist paper intended as an answer
to the Free Trade argument, that Protection increased the price of goods.
The article stated that this was not so: and to prove its position said
that the tendency of Protection was to induce people to go into
manufacturing who know little or nothing of the processes they were
undertaking, but who fancy that with the tariff of from 40 per cent. to
80 per cent. upon foreign goods, there must necessarily be a sufficient
margin to compensate for mistakes caused by their inexperience.  “And so
it happens,” continues the writer, “that there is great over-production,
ruinous competition among American manufacturers, frequent failures, and
consequently large stocks of goods are forced on the markets at a great
loss, the public getting cheap supplies in consequence.”  Adam Smith
would scarcely have quoted this as one of the methods of adding to the
wealth of nations.  But if the people at large obtain their cotton goods
cheaper through this system of over-production, it is clear that the
millowners are not the only sufferers, for it appears from a speech
delivered by Mr. Shearman of New York, at the Cobden Club dinner in the
present year (1883), that the wages of the factory operatives are twenty
per cent. less than in Lancashire, while their hours of labour are from
eighteen to twenty per cent. longer.

During the late Fair Trade agitation its advocates were never tired of
telling the English working-classes that under Protection their brethren
in America were prospering in a remarkable degree, but in the speech to
which I have referred Mr. Shearman shows that the average wages in
protected trades are actually less than in 1860, the last year of
comparative Free Trade, and that while in the ten years previous, wages
were constantly increasing, during the succeeding twenty years
(1860–1880) there was no appreciable advance, while during the past three
years they have been steadily declining; so that here we have one of the
staple trades of the country requiring longer hours of labour from the
operatives, at considerably lower wages than for the same class in
England, while the cost of living is much higher than in this country,
and the climate much more trying from the extremes of heat and cold.

Nor is this all, for the American operatives have very much less
relaxation than the same class in England, their holidays being very much
fewer.  Last year my workpeople, in addition to fifty-two Saturday
afternoons, had nineteen whole days, although there was abundance of work
for them, and the necessities of the business only required six days
closing of the works.  The English artisan loves to have a deal of
liberty, and his earnings enable him to indulge his desire in that
respect.

As may be supposed, the ranks of the operatives in the cotton mills of
America receive no accession from England, but only from Germany and
Scandinavia, where wages are low, and the oppressive military systems
drive people from their native countries.

During the last seven years of depression in trade in England it is well
known that, taken as a whole, the working classes have suffered
comparatively little, the loss falling mainly upon manufacturers, whose
profits have been greatly lessened.  But how would the working-classes
have fared if, in addition to the loss of home trade involved in the
failure of the crops for so many years, the same causes were in operation
which make it impossible for America to have a great foreign trade?

It is manifest that so long as Protection exists in the United States
exports must necessarily be confined almost entirely to such commodities
as other countries cannot produce.  Until recently the home demand has
kept the manufacturers in the States well employed; but competition has
now become exceedingly fierce, and they are beginning to tread upon each
other’s heels.  It is this state of things which is destined to exert the
most potent influence upon the fate of Protection.  The very class which
has hitherto been loudest in demanding prohibitory duties upon imports,
will soon, from sheer necessity, be found demanding their removal.

It is worthy of note, too, that while under Protection the earnings of
the producing class have been steadily declining, colossal fortunes,
amounting in one case to twenty or thirty millions sterling, have been
built up by individual monopolists.  On the other hand, during the same
period and under Free Trade, there has been a wider distribution of
material comfort in England, and, as shown by the official returns, a
decided decrease in the number of millionaires.

In passing through America on my return from Australia in 1876, I
expressed the opinion that Free Trade there would be by no means an
unmixed blessing for English manufacturers, for whereas at the present
time a vessel going to Australia from the United States with a cargo of
goods has to come back in ballast, doubling the cost of freight, under
Free Trade it would take back a cargo of wool, and the Americans would
consequently become our competitors both in buying and selling.

With the single exception of having higher wages—and this advantage is
more than balanced by the extra cost of living—I have failed to find that
American artisans are in any way better off than the English, while, as I
have already shown, their hours of labour are longer and the effect of
the climate much more exhausting.

A very striking feature to be met with in most American cities and towns
is the large number of tolerably respectable-looking men loafing about
and doing nothing.  In England such men, only in shabbier dress, would be
called “cadgers.”  I am told there are large numbers who prefer any
shifty mode of obtaining a living so long as they can wear a black coat
and avoid honest labour.  In the villages along the banks of the Hudson I
saw more children without shoes and stockings than are to be met with in
any part of England in a similar area.  They go to school shoeless, and a
woman told me that when shoes were put on their feet on Sundays they
complained loudly.  A land of freedom for tongue and foot!

During the Southern rebellion fears were expressed that the result of
emancipation would be to flood the markets of the North with negro
labour, but this does not appear to have been the case.  As long as
slavery existed the North was attractive to the negro as the land of
freedom, but when freedom was proclaimed throughout the States the negro
naturally elected to remain where he had always been—the climate and
surroundings being well suited to him.  The head waiter at our hotel at
West Point was a slave in Richmond until the middle of the war, when he
escaped to Washington.  I asked him how he got there.  “Oh, by the
underground railway,” said he.  It took him a week to travel the hundred
miles, and he had many narrow escapes, but was fortunate enough to come
out all right and to get a situation to wait upon one of Abraham
Lincoln’s sons.  He told me his owner, a lady, taught him to read and
write in face of the certainty of being sent to jail in case of being
discovered.  His father was sold away down south sixteen years before,
but since that day they had again met at Richmond.  “Well,” I said,
“neither Jeff. Davis nor any of his crew will ever play you such pranks
again.”  “No Sir,” said he.

The regulation of the liquor traffic in the American cities appears to
present as many difficulties as it does in England, especially as regards
the Sunday traffic.  The Sunday before we left New York the police made a
raid upon the liquor dealers in the city, and arrested a number of them
for selling during prohibited hours.  Their organs threatened all sorts
of reprisals at the coming election, and a meeting of the trade was
called to condemn the action of the authorities.  Most of the
requisitionists—judging by their names—were either German or Irish.  At
the time appointed some hundreds of liquor dealers assembled, and
presently a gentleman came on the platform and began to address them.
Soon, however, it began to dawn upon the trade that they had been
somewhat considerably sold, for the speaker gave them a regular teetotal
lecture, enlarging upon the evils the dealers were responsible for, and
warning them to forsake their wicked ways.  The audience could not stand
this, and threatened the orator that if he didn’t “make tracks right
away” they would give him “something hot,” upon which he quietly retired,
having given them the first temperance lecture they had ever heard.

Our visit to America was brought to a fitting termination by another
glorious excursion on the Hudson: after which it was with great pleasure
and satisfaction that we went on board one of the splendid White Star
Liners, soon to land again on the shores of dear old England.



CHAPTER X.


We arrived off Suez about four o’clock on the morning of the 1st of
March, having travelled from Australia in the magnificent steamship
“Orient.”  After saying farewell to our friends, at seven o’clock we set
out for the shore, our boat being manned by a picturesque party of Arabs.
We had about four miles to go, the latter portion of the journey being
through water so shallow that the men had to propel the boat by nimbly
running forward and placing one end of the oar in the mud and pushing
against the other with the shoulder; singing a monotonous song all the
while.  On arriving at our landing-place opposite the Custom House, a
motley crowd rushed forward, some dressed in night-shirts, some in
towels, others in their own black skins only. When we stopped, a score of
them dashed into the water and began to seize our luggage, seeing which
our boatmen called to us to beat them on the head with our umbrellas, and
to kick them off; but we managed to defend our property by loud words,
which broke no bones.  Then we were carried ashore amidst such shrieking,
hustling, jostling, and shouting as I had never heard or seen before.
The luggage was set down in the middle of the square to await the arrival
of an official from the Custom House.

                          [Picture: A Dragoman]

After a very slight examination we were permitted to pass, and then began
another battle for the luggage; but we selected as our dragoman a tall,
stout fellow named Hassan, who quickly routed the others; and then a file
of these half-naked Arabs marched off to the hotel with the luggage on
their backs.  The Suez Hotel is a very comfortable establishment, with
large, clean, and airy rooms, and bright and attentive native servants.

After breakfast we went for a stroll through the town.  The streets are
very narrow, and the tiny shops are filled with vegetables and other
garden produce, oils, simple metal wares, etc.  In one street the Bedouin
Arabs have stalls for the sale of charcoal, brought by them from the
desert; a very sullen, repulsive set of fellows they appear to be.  There
are few European buildings, and what there are were built for the French
officials during the construction of the Canal.  These were all vacated
during the Franco-German war, and very few French have since returned,
consequently the houses are in a very dilapidated condition.

Before leaving England we had arranged for a party of our friends to meet
us at Suez, and on returning from our stroll in the town, we walked for a
while in the large inner court of the hotel, when presently we saw our
friends entering, they having landed just three hours after our arrival
from Australia.

After lunch, nine of us took donkeys and had a ride round the town and
neighbourhood.  Not being assured of my riding ability, I asked my
companions to keep near me, which they promised to do, and which they
doubtless would have done if they could; but alas! their noble brutes
dashed off at full speed, and I was left alone.  At every street corner
stood a mob of darkies shouting, laughing, and begging, and calling out
the names of the various donkeys, “Mrs. Langtry,” “Mrs. Cornwallis West”
(this was mine), “Mr. Spurgeon,” etc.  On getting back to the hotel gates
there was a crowd of about fifty donkeys, all their fifty drivers wanting
us to engage them for our next ride, and it required a vigorous use of
Hassan’s stick to clear a passage for us.

On the following morning we left for Cairo by train, and in due time
Hassan appeared with about a dozen men and a shaky old wagon to take our
luggage to the station, and truly it was a formidable lot—a lady and
gentleman from Australia having no less than nine trunks.

                    [Picture: An Egyptian Donkey-Boy]

At the hotel gate stood the usual fifty donkeys, their drivers all
shrieking out to you to take their donkeys.  “My donkey good donkey, sah;
his name, Mrs. Langtry.”  “‘Dis donkey, Sir Roggar (_sic_) Tichborne,
sah; he go gentle.”  You have to push through the crowd of men and
animals as you best can.  The never-ceasing word _backsheesh_, or its
abbreviation _’sheesh_, hissing in your ear all the way.  On suddenly
turning a corner you may come upon a lot of children or grown-up people
engaged in play or other occupation, but they are always ready.  Their
hands are immediately stretched out, and the cry is on their lips,
_’sheesh_! _’sheesh_! nor do they seem surprised if you fail to respond.
Sometimes I vary it by putting out my own hand, with temporary success as
far as checking their begging goes, but they are soon equal to the
occasion, and with mock gravity will offer a quarter piastre—about a
halfpenny—and then you laugh and they laugh.

I had often read, that properly to understand Biblical allusions it is
necessary to travel in the East.  This constant extending of the hand for
_backsheesh_ gave me an entirely new appreciation of the passage,
“Ethiopia shall yet stretch forth her hand.”

After much excitement the train at last starts, and a mob accompanied it
as far as they can keep up by running, hoping against hope that you will
at length relent and throw them some money.  Once I offered a beggar a
new penny, but he handed it back very gravely, saying “No good—piastre”
(meaning that he wanted a piastre); but I pretended to be offended, and
did not give him anything.

Every little station on the road is infested with crowds of natives
hoping for _backsheesh_, and it is wonderful what vast numbers of people
there are who have nothing to do.  At most stations you will see an
ill-favoured fellow with a goat-skin across his back, filled with water,
but I should have to be very thirsty indeed before I could drink from it.
An hour after leaving Suez we saw our old friend the s.s. Orient in the
Canal close alongside, having taken twenty-four hours to accomplish this
distance.

                      [Picture: The S.S. “Orient.”]

At Ismailia we stopped some time, and a lad wanted to clean my boots
which, however, did not require cleaning, so I told him to black the bare
feet of a brown boy who was standing by.  This he proceeded to do in the
presence of a crowd of grinning spectators of all colours—yellow, brown,
coffee-coloured, and jet black.  The lad whose feet were blacked seemed
to enjoy the fun very much, and when it was over appeared to think he was
entitled to a half piastre as well as the operator, so he got it.  The
shoeblack then brought an ebony Nubian, whose skin was already a shining
black.  He asked me if he might do his feet, but I made him understand it
was quite unnecessary.  A grave-looking Turk observing the proceedings
gave a look which seemed to say, “Mad English again.”

At Zagazig we stayed two hours for luncheon, and were much interested
with the infinite variety of costume and feature among the crowds
thronging the station.  About half an hour before reaching Cairo, on
looking through the window, we had our first view of the Pyramids.  On
our arrival at Cairo we were greeted with a chorus of the usual kind, but
having “wired” to the hotel a porter was awaiting us with an omnibus, and
we were soon comfortably located in the new Grand Hotel.

A walk to the Nile Bridge gave us a good view of the river.  The road to
the Pyramids passes for some distance through a fine avenue of trees, and
the river having encroached on the soil too near to the roots, we saw for
the first time a phase of Egyptian life which is not pleasant—viz.,
forced labour.  About 1,500 men were engaged in piling up earth against
the roots, forming a thick, deep embankment against the river.  The soil
is carried in baskets, and from the elevation where we stood the men
looked like a swarm of ants.  These men are provided by the Sheiks of the
villages on the demand of the Government, who pay nothing whatever for
the labour.  The men receive neither wages nor food, but each village
looks after the families of its absentees, and attends to their work
until their return.  The men certainly seemed to labour with a will.

The Nile begins to rise about the end of June, reaching its greatest
height about the end of September, continuing for about fifteen days at
twenty-four feet above low-water level.  If the rise be thirty feet great
damage is done, and if it fail to reach eighteen feet famine ensues.

We rode for some distance along the valley of the Nile, which varies from
two to twelve miles in width.  It is very fertile, the soil being more
than forty feet deep.  It is only needful to sow the seed immediately
after the inundation, and in about four months the harvest is ready to be
gathered.  The plough in use is a very primitive article; but the
looseness of the soil renders stronger ploughs unnecessary.  In many
places as we went along we saw the natives irrigating by means of the
bucket and pole, with a counterbalance at the end (_shadouf_), raising
water from the Nile and sending it along the channels over the fields.
In one field we saw agriculture being carried on as Adam would have done
before the Fall, had it been necessary, the men being quite naked, and
digging the earth with their hands.

Returning to the city we took a walk through old Cairo, along the narrow
streets, passing many little workshops where various trades were being
carried on, the owners appearing pleased at our noticing them at work.
In one place some men were grinding beans with a huge pestle and mortar,
and showed us some of the meal.  In a secluded corner we saw about a
dozen old fellows in every variety of costume sitting on the ground
listening to a very animated story being told by one of the party.  They
appeared to be greatly interested, every now and then lifting up their
hands in amazement.  These professional story-tellers are a great
institution in Cairo.

Passing down one of the narrow streets our attention was arrested by the
busy hum of children’s’ voices, which we found proceeded from an upper
room, the casement of which was open.  Our guide told us it was a school,
and that the children were repeating passages from the Koran.

                   [Picture: The Schoolmaster “Abroad”]

One of our party, who had not forgotten the pranks of his boyhood, threw
a number of new threepenny pieces into the midst of the boys, causing
great excitement and confusion.  Presently an old man, with a fringe of
white hair encircling his dark face, and wearing a huge pair of
brass-framed spectacles, appeared at the open window brandishing his cane
at us, but in a moment his whole attitude changed, and holding out his
hand he uttered the familiar cry of—_backsheesh_.

                           [Picture: A “Peep”]

Our walk took us through one of the bazaars, which consist of very narrow
lanes full of shops, with dealers in every variety of goods, most of
which are made in the open.  We were particularly struck with the
beautiful embroideries of gold and silver thread, and the expeditious way
in which the workmen executed the various designs.  All were very anxious
we should buy, and I overheard one old rascal offer our Coptic guide ten
per cent. commission on our purchases.  We, however, made none.  In
passing the carpet bazaar we saw an English party buying dingy carpets.

The most interesting part of our day’s experiences was spent in the
manufacturing quarter.  There are no large factories in Cairo, and I
question if more than half a dozen people are employed at any one place.
The work is carried on in the most primitive fashion in the little shops
facing the street.

                      [Picture: “Bery Cheap, Sah!”]

There can be but few secrets in the various trades, as the workshops are
all shallow, and open to the streets.  All the jewellers are in one
street about 8ft. in width, each of them being provided with a safe,
obviously of English manufacture.  I do not think, however, that the
bellows used by them were made in Birmingham, for it was curious to note
that they had no valves.  At the end of the jewellers’ street sits an old
fellow like Abraham or Isaac, weighing precious metals in a pair of
evidently very accurate scales.  This man acted as general weigher for
the trade, and his operations were carried on in the face of the public.
Leaving the bazaars we met a crowd of natives gesticulating, shouting,
and frolicking in a very excited manner.  Standing aside to allow the
throng to pass, we found it was a bridal procession conducting a bride to
her husband’s home.  A few tattered minstrels walked in front, making a
hideous noise on pipes and drums, while a gang of young men jumped and
danced about, and indulged in the wildest horse-play.  The women were
ornamented with strips of gilt paper and coloured ribbons, and had their
cheeks thickly coated with rouge.  The bride walked under a canopy
consisting of four poles covered with canvas and was quite enclosed.
Sometimes this portable tent would collapse upon the fair one, whose
struggles were prominently manifested by bulges in the canvas.  The whole
party seemed to be making the most of the occasion.

We next visited the mosque of Sultan Hassan, which was built in the 14th
century, at a cost of £600 per day for the three years it took to
complete.  It is the finest mosque in Cairo.  While standing beside the
Sultan’s tomb within the mosque our guide related its history.  He said
that for three years the Sultan had been absent from Egypt on
pilgrimages, and that during his absence his Grand Vizier declared
himself Sultan.  Hassan hearing of this returned to Cairo in the disguise
of a poor pilgrim, and finding that he had still many adherents he
consulted with some of the principal of them as to the best way of
regaining his rights.  He first obtained permission to build this mosque,
and when it was finished his partisans assembled in the building in large
numbers.

                  [Picture: The Mosque of Sultan Hassan]

Hassan, still in the pilgrim’s habit, rose to preach to the people—this
was the preconcerted signal for a general massacre of the usurper and his
supporters; and thus Hassan recovered his throne.  At the entrance to the
mosque our boots were covered with sandals, so that our feet might not
touch the holy floor; but custom does not demand the removal of the hat.
In the court-yard is a fountain where the faithful perform their
ablutions before prayer.  In front of the niche looking towards Mecca
were about a dozen persons at their devotions.  Just in advance of them
stood a mollah or priest, and as he bowed his head or kneeled they did
the same, concluding with chanting or singing a prayer.  Whilst we were
looking around a little boy was following us, keeping a sharp look out
lest our slippers should come off, and if they showed any signs of coming
loose he at once brought up a man to fasten them.

One of the sights of Cairo is the egg-hatching establishment.  This
institution is rendered necessary, because the hens are too idle to hatch
their eggs in this country, consequently the operation has to be
artificially performed.  The people bring their eggs to the hatching
place and receive one chicken for every two eggs.  I observed the
Egyptian eggs are very small, due also to the laziness of the hens,
doubtless.

We next visited the citadel and the mosque of Mohammed Ali, a magnificent
pile, built early in this century.  In the courtyard of this place the
Mamelukes in 1811 were massacred by order of Mohammed Ali.  Fearing their
power he invited them to the mosque, and closing the gates slaughtered
them all, save one who escaped by leaping with his horse from the
parapet.  The horse was killed, but the rider was uninjured.  About 450
persons were here massacred, and 800 in other parts of the city.  The
citadel commands a magnificent view of the city and surrounding country,
and every evening large parties of tourists assemble there to see the
sunset.

The excursion to the Pyramids of Gizeh is now much more easily made since
Ismaïl completed the carriage road by way of compliment to our Royal
Princes on their visit.  Our party was conveyed in carriages, while
donkeys had been previously sent forward for the use of the ladies.
While on the carriage-road the view of the Pyramids is altogether lost
till within a mile of the end of the journey, acacias having been thickly
planted on either side of the road.  On leaving the carriages we were at
once surrounded by beggars, who continued to infest us all the time we
were in the neighbourhood.  Some were loud, almost menacing in their
demands, others soft and insinuating.  One kind, which I call the “quiet
devil” or “familiar,” creeps by your side, and whispers in your ear
confidentially that he is “a good man”; that the others are “bad men”;
that he will not bother you for anything; that you are “a good man”; that
he will “help you, and keep off the others.”  But alas! he too is sure to
whisper in conclusion _backsheesh_.  If the road is a little rough these
“good men” seem to fancy you cannot get on without help, so one on each
side puts a hand under your arm and half carries you along.  It is quite
useless to protest; they look at you as though they would say, “poor man!
he thinks he can walk by himself; but we know better; he would fall at
once did we not hold him up.”  And then, when we reach level ground
again, there is a universal chorus of—_’sheesh_, _backsheesh_.

                  [Picture: Ascending the Great Pyramid]

On arriving at the little house at the foot of the Pyramids our guide
Abaid summoned the Sheik of the village, who proceeded to detail two men
for each person who intended to make the ascent—ladies and fat men being
allotted four men each to help them up.  The weather being extremely hot
my sister and I were content to see the rest of the party make the ascent
while we sat in a shady place at the base.  A group of twenty Arabs of
the most patriarchal aspect squatted on the ground in front of us in a
half-circle; immediately our eyes fell upon any one of them he mutely
extended one hand—not so much to help us as to be helped—instantly
lowering it without complaint on our looking elsewhere.  This would
become monotonous.  I would occasionally show by my look that I was
annoyed, upon which the beggar would get a crack over his head from one
of his neighbours.

The Great Pyramid of Cheops is 732ft. along the base line and 460ft.
high, covering an area of 536,000 square feet—about equal in extent to
Lincoln’s Inn Fields in London.  Its height is about 60ft. higher than
the cross on St. Paul’s Cathedral.  My wife managed the ascent very well,
and also went with the rest to explore the interior, and all seemed
greatly pleased with their exploits.  A fee of two francs to the Sheik
and a franc a piece to the helpers is the regular charge for each person;
but even the Sheik is not above taking a little extra by way of
_backsheesh_.  Our party were quite ready for their lunch, which Abaid
quickly spread out in the little house provided by the Government for the
accommodation of visitors.  We were shown into a large room, and while at
table the doorways were filled with a hungry crowd, quarrelling,
laughing, and jostling each other.

                       [Picture: View on the Nile]

Some of the bolder spirits at length got into the room, but our guide
seizing his stick administered two or three heavy blows, and soon cleared
them out.  It was wonderful to see how tamely big men will allow
themselves to be driven.  Truly the stick is a great institution in
Egypt, although perhaps none but the ruling class would acquiesce in the
inscription found in one of the ancient tombs to the effect that “The
stick came down from heaven—a blessing from God.”

Before sitting down to eat, a boy brought water that we might wash our
hands.  The mode was certainly primitive.  We had to hold our hands out
of the window while he poured water over them.  A noisy crowd of Arabs
were sitting under another window, and a barber in the midst was
operating upon the head of one of them, and it was really wonderful how
cleverly he shaved, making a clean sweep of every lock and every hair.  I
asked Abaid if the men were under a vow, but he said it was because
summer was coming on, and it would be cooler without hair.

                          [Picture: The Sphinx]

After a scene of great confusion in paying the various claimants, during
which the Sheik had to make a vigorous use of his long stick, we started
to see the Sphinx, which is about 500 yards off.  Before leaving, I
called the Sheik and gave him two francs, that he might instruct his men
to keep the mob from us.  This he accepted with great solemnity, and in
parting shook hands in a most impressive manner.

                      [Picture: A Wash and a Shave]

The Sphinx is cut out of the solid rock, and is about thirty feet from
the top of the head to the bottom of the chin, and about fourteen feet
across the face, the body being 140 feet long.  I could see no beauty in
the face, the features being almost obliterated.

Near the Sphinx is a fine underground temple formed of immense granite
blocks and polished alabaster.  The pavement is of granite and is
perfectly smooth.  Some of the finest statues at Bûlak were found in a
well adjoining this temple.

Leaving our hotel at seven a.m., we started for Gizeh station _en route_
for Sakkara, the railway taking us as far as Bedrashên.  We had engaged
eleven donkeys for carrying our party and the food necessary for the
whole day’s refreshment.  The confusion at Gizeh station in obtaining our
tickets and getting the donkeys into the train was something tremendous.
Fortunately, the morning was rather cool.

On arriving at Bedrashên we had some difficulty in finding the right
donkeys, and I had great misgivings about the prospective five hours’
ride; but at last we got fairly off, and by degrees my confidence
returned.  We soon reached Mîtrahîneh, the site of ancient Memphis, now
only marked by a vast number of heaps and mounds of rubbish, under which
are doubtless buried many treasures of ancient Egyptian art.  A number of
articles which have been recently dug out were shown in a rude enclosure;
one or two of the statues beautifully executed.  Lying in a pool, face
downwards, is a statue of Ramses II. belonging to the British Museum, but
the authorities of that institution have not yet taken the trouble to
remove it.  The statue is 50ft. long, and is of siliceous limestone, very
hard, and bearing a high polish.  In one hand the figure holds a scroll
bearing his name, and at his side is his little daughter, reaching to his
knee.  The face is still quite smooth, the features are sharply cut and
delicately finished, and the expression perfectly preserved, looking
really beautiful.  Memphis was said by Herodotus to extend for six miles.
It was conquered in turns by Persians, Assyrians, and Romans, each of
whom did their share towards ruining it, and when at last the Mohammedans
conquered the country, its doom was sealed, and the stones of its palace
and temples taken away to build the new city of Cairo.  The dykes being
no longer kept in repair, the overflow of the Nile gradually piled up the
mud year by year, and this, with the sand from the desert, has, in the
course of ages, made Memphis little more than a name.  Memphis is called
in the Bible _Noph_, and in the time of the Patriarchs was the capital of
Lower Egypt; but the prophecy of Jeremiah, xlvi. 19, has been literally
fulfilled: “Noph shall be waste and desolate.”

Leaving Memphis we go on to Sakkara, for thousands of years the ancient
Necropolis or burying-ground.  In the centre stands the great Step
Pyramid, built in steps of comparatively small pieces of stone.  It is
said to be not only the oldest pyramid, but also the most ancient
monument of any kind in the world.  The cemetery is four and a half miles
long by an average of three-fourths of a mile in width, and being full of
holes it is necessary to be very careful in crossing it.  The ground is
strewed with skulls and other human bones, some of the former being of
great thickness.  Soon we reached the house of Mariette Bey, built for
his use when he was engaged in his explorations, and here, by his
permission, parties are at liberty to rest and take their lunch.

The first object of interest is the Serapeum, or Apis Mausoleum.  When
alive, the sacred bull was worshipped in a splendid temple at Memphis,
and lodged in an adjoining palace.  When dead he was buried in this
mausoleum, in a vault excavated out of the solid rock, his body being
placed in a huge sarcophagus hewn out of a single piece of granite, and
hollowed into a regular square to receive the body.  A cover, also of
granite, and weighing many tons, was then placed over it.  The size of
the sarcophagus is 13ft. long, 7ft. 6in. wide, and 11ft. high.

This mausoleum had for ages been known to exist somewhere, but no one
knew the locality.  The ancient Strabo wrote, “There is also a serapeum
in a very sandy spot where drifts of sand are raised by the wind to such
a degree that we saw some sphinxes buried up to their heads, and others
half covered.”  Mariette, recollecting this passage, observed in 1860 a
sphinx’s head appearing through the sand, and it at once occurred to him
that this must be the site of the avenue of which mention is made by
another ancient writer, so he commenced a clearing and laid bare 141
sphinxes.  To do this he had to make a cutting in the sand 70ft. deep;
but at length he was rewarded by discovering the entrance to the
mausoleum.

                     [Picture: The Serapeum, Sakkara]

There are several galleries for the different dynasties, but only one is
now shown, the interments in which date from 650 B.C. down to 50 B.C.
The galleries extend for 400 yards, and there are now twenty-four
sarcophagi in their places.  Three of these are beautifully sculptured.
One of them is of polished granite, and although the engraving is only
1/16 in. deep, a mere scratch in the polish, it is as clear as when first
done, over 2,000 years ago, and so perfect is the stone that it rings
like a bell when struck.

From the Serapeum we proceeded to examine one of the tombs, also
excavated by Mariette Bey.  It is called the Tomb of Tih.  Over the
doorways of these ancient tombs it was the custom to inscribe the name
and titles of the deceased, and also an invocation to the God of Tombs
(the tomb having been built during life by the person himself), with
these objects:—

1st.—To accord to deceased propitious funeral-rites, and a good
burial-place after a long and happy life.

2nd.—To be favourably disposed to deceased in his journey beyond the
tomb.

3rd.—To secure to him, to all eternity, the proper payment of
funeral-offerings by his relations.

A list of these offerings is carved upon the walls, which are covered
with sculptures representing the scenes in which the deceased had been
engaged during life, ending with a representation of the conveyance of
the mummy to the tomb.  The tomb itself contains several apartments, in
which the relatives met upon certain anniversaries to present
votive-offerings, etc.

We were astonished to see the perfect state of preservation in which the
tomb remains.  The sculptures on the walls are as sharp and clear and the
colours apparently as bright as when laid on.  Sand is a good
preservative when not in motion, and to this must the marvel be ascribed.
Over the door is the inscription giving Tih’s name, and stating that he
was a priest; and on the walls of the first chamber are representations
showing statues of Tih being embarked in boats and oxen being brought for
sacrifice, one of them being offered up.  There is another showing Tih
with his wife and family watching his people at work in the farmyard.
Some of them are bringing sacks of grain for the poultry; others are
fattening the birds by making and forcing pellets of flour down their
throats.  Behind this there is a view of the farm-buildings, the roofs
being supported on carved wooden pillars.

                     [Picture: From the Tomb of Tih]

In the middle there is a pool where ducks are swimming, while cattle are
seen pasturing in the fields around.  Among the birds Tih kept are cranes
and pigeons, ducks and geese.  He had also cattle of every size and kind,
including antelopes, gazelles, and wild goats.  Then come the boats
filled with jars and bales transporting farm produce down the Nile.  In
another place men are shown carrying fruits and vegetables, and pigeons
in cages.  Farther on are seen men drawing statues enclosed in temples of
wood, half-a-dozen dragging with ropes, while one pours water on the road
to make it easier.  In another room Till is shown as a sportsman in a
boat; in one hand he holds a decoy-bird, while with the other he hurls a
curved stick like an Australian boomerang.  In the water are seen
crocodiles and hippopotami: a crocodile and hippopotamus are fighting,
the latter being evidently victorious; some of the servants are trying to
catch them, and the hippopotamus is just being hooked with a sort of
harpoon.  (This scene recalls the verse in Job, “Canst thou draw out the
leviathan with a hook?”)  Here again the fish are being drawn in nets
into the boats, while the work of the farm goes vigorously on.  Cows are
seen crossing a ford and browsing in a field, while herdsmen are driving
a flock of goats.  Oxen are ploughing just as we saw them in the fields
to-day, and with a very similar plough.  The seed is being sown, corn
reaped, and men with three-pronged forks are gathering it into heaps
while the oxen are treading it out.  In another place the corn is being
tied into sheaves, and donkeys are being brought up with much fuss and
use of the stick to take it to the granaries.  Some of these scenes are
drawn with inimitable humour.  Carpenters are engaged in making
furniture, and shipwrights in building boats, while Tih is always present
directing each operation.

The Egyptians were said by Diodorus to call their houses hostelries, and
their tombs their everlasting homes.

We now remounted our donkeys, and for an hour rode over the sandy desert
through dreadful mud villages, from which all the population turned out
as we passed, crying with all their might—_’sheesh_, _’sheesh_,
_backsheesh_, _’sheesh_, _’sheesh_.

Passing several strings of camels—which I described as “camelcades,”
coining a word for the purpose—we soon regained the delightfully fertile
country which is watered by the Nile.  For more than two hours we trotted
and galloped along through a very rich country, where hundreds of acres
of date-palms were growing—where the young corn was waving, and peas,
beans, and cucumbers in great luxuriance—no more dust nor sand, but a
pleasant breeze and bright sun, with nothing to mar the pleasure except
the sight of the wretched natives.  Most of the children are absolutely
naked, while their parents’ clothes are of the most limited description.

             [Picture: A Camelcade (sketched by the Author)]

We halted for lunch under some palm-trees by a branch of the Nile, and
then proceeded to the carriages, which we had ordered to meet us in the
Gizeh road.  Some of us had to ride back into Cairo on our donkeys, and
on our way we passed the Khedive, who cordially acknowledged our
salutation.  All our party agreed in saying that to-day’s excursion was
one of the most delightful we had ever had.

                     [Picture: Prayers in the Desert]



CHAPTER XI.


Friday being the Mohammedan Sabbath we devoted this day to the Dancing
and Howling Dervishes, as they hold their principal _zikr_ or ceremonial
on that day.  We first visited the convent of the dancing Dervishes and
witnessed one of their performances, and certainly a curious spectacle it
was. In the centre of the room a space of about 50ft. in diameter is
railed off, and about twenty solemn-looking men in hats like the tall
“tile” without brims are sitting opposite the door.  They looked like a
lot of ancient “Friends” at the head of a meeting.  In the gallery above
were some musicians, one of whom was playing a flute in a melancholy
manner, and another reciting a prayer.  At a certain point the Dervishes
within the circle bow and rise, and taking off their outer garments begin
walking round the enclosure with solemn steps and slow, headed by the
Chief Priest or Sheik.  On passing the carpet upon which the Sheik has
been sitting they turn and bow, and this is repeated two or three times;
then they go into the middle of the enclosure, spreading out their
garments like ladies in the old minuet; the music quickens, and they
begin to whirl around on one foot, occasionally touching the ground with
the other.  The performers’ eyes are closed (or appear to be so), but
they keep on in perfect order—never touching one another—while the old
Priest walks about among them.  Some of the more experienced Dervishes
can revolve fifty or sixty times a minute, keeping it up for nearly half
an hour.  It was a curious proceeding altogether, and, for a wonder, no
_backsheesh_ was demanded, the Priests being supported by endowments and
occasional gifts from the Khedive.  Mounting our donkeys we rode off to
the Howling Dervishes, where we found them in full howl.  About twenty of
them were engaged in making the most hideous noise imaginable.  These
fellows had their hair very long and shaggy, and threw it about their
heads in the wildest manner.  Every time they raise their heads they
utter the word _HU_ (God alone), which sounds like the yell of a wild
beast, at times the excitement rising to such a height that some of them
would foam at the mouth and fall to the ground apparently in a fit.  They
wound up their proceedings with a prolonged howl and a deep grunt.  These
Dervishes, like their dancing brethren, are supported by Government
endowment.

I have no doubt that when first instituted these “pious orgies” were
entered upon with a due sense of solemnity, and I believe in places
remote from the regular tourist route the religious feeling still
predominates, but the Howling and Dancing Dervishes in Cairo have long
since become one of the regular sights to which foreign visitors are
always taken.

Upon the occasion of our visit there were several clergymen present, more
than one artist, and a number of ladies, amongst the latter being a
placid looking Quaker, who, with hands folded before her, was calmly
surveying the “creaturely activity” of the Howling enthusiasts.

We afterwards paid a visit to Miss Whateley’s Schools, at the British
Mission.  There are over 300 native children here, and we heard many of
them read in English and French, and also do some exercises in
translation.  The girls were engaged in embroidering, reading, and
writing, and they sang two hymns in Arabic while we stayed.  Then we saw
them muster for the recess, and a bright little fellow stepped out into
the middle of the hall and repeated the Lord’s Prayer, first in English
and then in Arabic, after which they went out in a most orderly manner.
Miss Whateley seems much encouraged at the result of her many years’
labours; but I have no doubt she has had her times of discouragement.  My
wife visited an Arab school in Syria, the superintendent of which told
her that after two years’ continuous labour amongst the people of his
district, the result was so unsatisfactory that he was greatly
discouraged and was inclined to abandon the mission.  Calling the people
together he told them of his disappointment, and said that although he
had worked diligently amongst them for so long a time, they appeared to
be no better than before, and that he felt that he must leave them.  The
people, who had received many benefits from him in various ways, began to
be seriously alarmed, and entreated him to try them yet again.  One man
got up in the meeting and said, “Teacher, you must not go, you have made
us much better.  When you came first there was a woman living near who
used to steal all the fowls in her neighbourhood, but now,” he said,
“_she only steals the eggs_.”  The superintendent’s features somewhat
relaxed on hearing this, and the quick-witted Arabs immediately
perceiving their advantage, renewed their appeals, a woman rising and
saying, “Teacher, when you came first my neighbour’s son used to thrash
his mother every day, but since he has been at your school he only
thrashes her once a month.”  The superintendent remained, and is well
satisfied with the progress which has since been made.

In the afternoon we went for a drive in the Shubra Avenue, which is the
Rotten Row of Cairo.  The custom is to drive quickly up one side,
returning slowly on the other, the drive occupying an hour.  The Khedive
drove past us in his carriage, preceded by two magnificent fellows
(_sais_) whose duty it is to run in front of the carriage.  They were
dressed in gorgeous gold tissue waistcoats, long white skirts, a silk
sash of many colours round the waist, a fez with long tassel, legs and
feet bare, and in the hand a handsome staff.  These men run quite as fast
as the horses, keep up the pace for a couple of hours, and are employed
to clear the crowded streets for the carriages.  This they do by shouting
loudly in a fine resonant voice, which is very effectual.  The avenue was
crowded with carriages, some of them containing ladies of the harem.
Their carriages have windows all round.

                       [Picture: A Runner, or Sais]

Some of the ladies are shrouded as for burial; others leave only the eyes
uncovered, while some (the prettiest, presumably) wear only thin gauze
veils, through which their faces are plainly to be seen.  All wear the
same languishing expression, and appear to be very fond of peeping at the
Europeans, and as we passed and repassed them they would recognise us
with a smile, and then, to save appearances, turn away.  When we passed
the guard-house the soldiers turned out, thinking it was the Khedive’s
carriage, and drew up in saluting order.

                       [Picture: In Shubra Avenue]

They were greatly disgusted on discovering their mistake.  At four
o’clock a general stampede of carriages, horsemen, runners, and
pedestrians takes place, and the road is soon quite deserted.

One of the features of Cairene life is the universal use of donkeys by
all classes of the people; ancient women shrouded from head to foot in
black gauze, old men with long grey beards, and noses not much
shorter—their heads wrapped in turbans, and robes covering the donkeys’
backs—jogging along, rubbing against the British tourist, the latter
looking anything but grave and serious on his Jerusalem pony.  Our party
certainly did not look more _bizarre_ than others; but we should not feel
inclined to enter Birmingham in the same state as we often entered and
left Cairo.

                        [Picture: Water Carriers]

One morning we got up early for a donkey-ride across the Nile to see,
amongst other things, the garden and farm produce arrive from the country
round.  Crossing the Nile we turned down a fine avenue of sycamores, two
or three miles long.  The Khedive’s gardens lie on one side and the river
at the other.  Moored to the river bank was an Englishman’s _dahabieh_ or
Nile boat.  A party had just returned from the cataracts, and on the
upper deck we observed a dead crocodile.  Riding by one palace towards
another, we passed a crowd of people on their way to market, with
bullocks, goats, camels laden with clover, women with the round cakes so
common here, and a great variety of other things.  Presently we sighted
the Pyramids, one side lit up with the morning sun, while another was in
deep shadow.  The Sphinx was also plainly to be seen.

Leaving the Gizeh Road leading to the Pyramids we turned towards Cairo,
our donkeys instantly knowing that we were homeward-bound, and needing no
persuasion to gallop back to breakfast.  On nearing the bridge we came
upon hosts of camels, donkeys, and oxen laden with produce, and being
assessed for the octroi or town-tax.  The police were armed with long
spikes, which they pushed into the load to ascertain if anything else was
packed inside.  It was an interesting scene—the busy crowd, the
magnificent river, and the brilliant morning sunshine making up a picture
not easily forgotten.

One of the most interesting drives in the neighbourhood of Cairo is to
Heliopolis—part of the way lying through a fine avenue of acacias—and
passing the old camping ground used as a _rendezvous_ by the Mecca
pilgrims.  It is the old caravan road, and stretches far away into the
desert, from which came to us a delightfully fresh breeze.  We also
passed the Abbaseyeh Palace, built by Abbas Pasha, who, fearing
assassination, lived here in seclusion, keeping sentinels on the towers
to give warning of the approach of a mob, and dromedaries and fleet
horses always ready saddled for escape into the desert.  He was, however,
murdered at last in spite of all his precautions.

                   [Picture: The Tombs of the Khalifs]

Along the road are some beautiful plantations of palms, oranges, and
lemons, castor-oil and other plants growing in the greatest luxuriance.
Heaps of oranges were lying on the ground.  After driving through a fine
olive plantation we came out upon an extensive plain, where, in 1517,
Sultan Selim defeated the last of the Mameluke Dynasty, and made Egypt a
Turkish province.  Here too, in 1800, the French defeated the Turks and
regained possession of Cairo.  Our guide called a halt in order to show
us a fine old sycamore, called the virgin’s tree, under which Joseph and
Mary are said to have rested during their flight into Egypt.  I asked
Abaid if he believed the story.  Placing his hand upon his heart and
bowing his head, he replied, with something of the sententiousness of a
Dr. Johnson, “Sir, I am a Christian!”  I felt inclined to tell him that I
also was a Christian, but that I did not believe it; but then why should
I disturb his honest belief?  Soon the obelisk of Heliopolis came in
view, and we knew we were near it by the crowd of youngsters swarming
round the carriage.  But I adopted my old plan of being the first to ask
for _backsheesh_, causing them to laugh so heartily that they could
hardly take up the cry.

The obelisk is about 6ft. square at the base and about 68ft. high; it is
the oldest in Egypt, and was erected by the founder of the twelfth
dynasty.  The inscriptions on its four sides give its history and the
account of its erection about 3,000 B.C.

                       [Picture: A Street in Bûlak]

Heliopolis was called Bethshemish by the Jews, and in Exodus is called
ON.  It was here that Joseph married Asenath, the daughter of Potipherah,
and where Moses became learned in the wisdom of the Egyptians.  Here
Plato and Herodotus studied, and Josephus says—“The city was given to the
Children of Israel as their residence when they came down into Egypt.”
The obelisk, as we see it, was old when Abraham came into the country;
but, notwithstanding its venerable age and intensely interesting
associations, it has not been too sacred for tourists who have been
caught chipping pieces off the edges.

After lunch we drove to Bûlak, an interesting suburb of Cairo.  The
houses are very old, and the street-scenes very curious and thoroughly
Eastern in character.  The large overhanging windows and casements
familiar in pictures are everywhere to be seen, and now and then a
glimpse of a female face is caught peeping furtively out at the
passers-by.  The streets are very narrow, and the coachman yells and
shouts at the foot-passengers in his way, not scrupling to apply the whip
to quicken their movements.  All this is taken patiently—far too much
so—and betrays the saddest side of Egyptian character, speaking volumes
for the way in which the people have been treated.

Hard by was a curious sight.  Standing against a wall, and raised above
the level of the street like another Simon Stylites, was a
strange-looking man, whose only raiment consisted of a sack, through a
hole in which one arm was thrust.  In his hand he held a small instrument
like a garden-rake, with which he tortured his back, while his gaze
“seemed upon the future bent.”  Some irreverent tourists looking on were
presently moved to laughter at the peculiar exhibition, upon which the
holy man gave them one glance of wonder and pity, and then resumed his
gaze into futurity.

                         [Picture: A Holy Fakir]

It being fair-day, there were a large number of booths, cheap theatres,
peep-shows, merry-go-rounds, etc., just as one sees in England.  In
another place was a story-teller, surrounded by an appreciative audience,
who treated every “point” with loud laughter.  It was curious to see how
earnest and interested they all were, and the dramatic manner in which
the story was told.

The National Museum for Egyptian antiquities, founded by Mariette Bey, is
situated in Bûlak.  Our time being short, we proposed paying it another
visit, which, however, we were unfortunately unable to do.  Much of the
sculpture is really marvellous in its life-like character.  One of the
most remarkable statues is of wood, and is said to be 4,000 years old.
It is admirably carved.  There is also a large collection of jewellery,
beads, enamels, etc.; chess and draughtboards, an artist’s paint-box and
brushes, bread, eggs, fruit, pieces of well-made rope and thread; an axe
of gilt bronze, having a gilt cedar-wood handle; a gold boat with twelve
silver oarsmen, and many other curiosities.  The museum is one of the
most interesting sights in Egypt, and will well repay many visits.

In the evening some of our party took donkeys and a guide and returned to
Bûlak to see some of the shows, but the first they visited was of so
extraordinary a character they decided to see no more until their taste
was educated up or down to the present Egyptian standard.

The railway journey from Cairo to Alexandria occupied about 6½ hours.
The line crosses the Delta of the Nile, the country being very flat all
the way.

The soil here is extremely fertile, and it was very interesting to watch
the various agricultural operations as we rode along.  We particularly
noticed the many modes in which water is supplied to the land.  Alongside
the railway runs a stream issuing from the Nile, and the different
holdings of land are bordered with little streamlets in place of hedges.

                 [Picture: A Wrecked Ship of the Desert]

At the junction of these streamlets with the main stream may frequently
be seen a couple of men standing on either bank lifting water from the
river to the streamlets by means of a huge flat bowl, holding probably
eight to ten gallons.  This vessel is lifted on either side by means of
two long handles diverging from each other, and it is surprising how
large a quantity of water can be thrown up by means of it in an hour.
The bowl is always in motion with a fine swing, and it is evident the men
are working on their own account.

Every station at which we stopped is crowded with people selling oranges,
water, etc., and very clever they are at their business too, very
persuasive, and as quick as thought to see if you are inclined to buy.
The children are the merriest, liveliest things imaginable, with bright
eyes and shining white teeth.  Here also may be seen numbers of beggars,
young and old, calling out eternal _backsheesh_.  We saw some venerable
old fellows, bent nearly double with age, and with hair and whiskers
quite white, who entreated us piteously to help them, saying “Got no
mother, got no father, _backsheesh_!”  Such orphans as these never
obtained our sympathy, although they afforded us great amusement.

While in Cairo, news came of the dissolution of Parliament by Lord
Beaconsfield, and we hastened to Alexandria to take the steamer for Italy
on the following day; but on arriving we found the weather so excessively
rough that the steamers were detained: and, as there seemed no prospect
of getting off, we determined to proceed to Port Saïd, by way of
Ismailïa, in order to take the steamer sailing thence for Naples, hoping
on some future occasion to be able to see what is to be seen in
Alexandria.  A day’s railway-ride brought us to Ismailïa, from which
place we took the evening mail-boat to Port Saïd.  The night was very
cold, and after a seven hours’ trip on the Canal it was very pleasant to
find ourselves in the magnificent hotel built by Prince Henry of the
Netherlands, attached to the Dutch factory at Port Saïd.

One of the Orient Steamers was due to sail on the following day, and we
expected to proceed to Naples in her, but after providing us with tickets
the agent sent us word that she had been detained a week and that we must
choose another vessel.  There was no other way of escape than by taking
the P. and O. Steamer “Mongolia” to Malta, trusting to being able to find
a ready means of crossing to Naples from that place.  Unfortunately a
heavy storm in the Mediterranean had the effect of delaying our arrival
in Malta some hours, and we had the mortification of seeing the Naples
steamer leaving the harbour as we were entering it.  We arrived on Monday
and found there would not be another steamer until Thursday, and as the
Birmingham election was to take place on Wednesday in the following week
our chance of getting there seemed very doubtful.  Leaving Malta,
however, on the Thursday, by dint of almost continual travelling night
and day, we arrived safely in Birmingham at half-past ten on the
Wednesday morning, and proceeded at once to register our votes for Bright
and Chamberlain, two of the three successful Liberal candidates.

                           [Picture: Au Revoir]



CHAPTER XII. {226}


                       [Picture: In the Suez Canal]

After a stormy passage through the Mediterranean we turned in towards
Port Saïd, and soon after sighting the handsome lighthouse took the
French pilot on board, anchoring broadside on to the main street of the
town and within fifty yards of the shore.  A motley throng, in boats
quite as motley soon filled up the space between the ship and the shore,
and a wild jabber composed of a mixture of English, French, Italian, and
Arabic filled the air.  Presently the usual tribe of pedlars came on
deck, and having spread out their wares invited the passengers to buy,
somewhat after the fashion of London tradesmen in Cheapside hundreds of
years ago with their cry of “What lack ye?”  The inevitable Maltese with
his lace, the Greek money-changer walking about with his hands full of
silver offering to change, and astonishing the honest Britisher on his
first voyage by his liberality in proffering twenty shillings for a
sovereign—the rate of exchange, however, leaving him a very good profit.
Near him is a Hebrew, whom I remember having seen at Aden, the black
curls over his brow reminding one forcibly of Benjamin Disraeli.  This
man keeps to his trade of dealer in ostrich feathers.

                      [Picture: A Feather Merchant]

Here also are gentlemen of the long robe—not lawyers, but Arabs, in ample
white night-shirts and turbans—offering to young ladies in the most
seductive tones, at two shillings each, coral necklaces, which can be
purchased in Birmingham at three shillings the dozen, while dealers in
photographs, melons, and oranges walk about always ready to take
one-fourth of what they ask for their wares.  Parallel with us are the
quays, on which are crowds of people of all nationalities.  The Custom
House in front is occupied by a company of English artillerymen, the
entrance being guarded by a British sentry, while overhead the Egyptian
flag is flying.  Away to the left is the old Dutch hotel, recently bought
by the British Government, and now occupied by two hundred men of the
Royal Marine Light Infantry.

Immediately in front of the ship is the main street of the town.  It is
perfectly straight and about half a mile long, with a small public garden
near the end.  In this street are a large number of _casinos_, where
music is dealt out at nights by bands of female performers, who are
called “Bohemiennes,” and where, we are assured, everything is properly
respectable—until eleven o’clock!  Many of our lady passengers, in the
innocence of their hearts, looking forward to a pleasant concert during
the evening, are much shocked when they learn that the said concerts are
held in _casinos_.

We landed at ten o’clock, and had a leisurely walk through the town and
halfway through the Arab quarter, but the smells were so offensive that
we turned back.  A lot of young Arabs, however, urged us to go on
farther, for there was an Arab hanging, but as we did not think a dead
Arab would be likely to be a more agreeable sight than a living one we
declined.  The culprit had been executed that morning for the murder of
his grand-daughter, nine months previously.  An account of his crime was
written in Arabic and attached to his breast, and the large scissors with
which he committed the murder were suspended around his neck.  Some of
the young Arabs were vexed with us because we would not give them
_backsheesh_, and began to be insulting, talking about Arabi, when
presently a smart youth of ten years old interfered, and, cuffing the
ears of the young monkeys, loudly proclaimed the prowess of the British.

We went to look at the Dutch House where the Marines were quartered, and
a young officer, Lieutenant Cotter, kindly asked us to go over the
building.  The rooms are very fine; but what a change in the scene since
we slept here for a night two-and-half years ago!  Then the hotel was in
operation, and the rooms were furnished as elaborately as in the house of
an English gentleman.  But everything had been taken away, and the
officers were sleeping on the marble floors, and the men on the floors of
the adjoining warehouses, where also the horses were stabled.  Lieutenant
Cotter had made a bedstead for himself, and one of his men had made him a
bath, and these, with a chair, completed the furnishing of his room; his
wash-basin consisted of a large flower-pot, with a cork in the hole at
the bottom.  The Marines arrived in Egypt a few days after Tel-el-Kebir,
and so saw no fighting; but they had to march over to Fort Gemileh, seven
miles away, and fully expected a very severe fight, as the fort is
heavily armed with modern guns, and was manned by Nubians, who are
reported to be excellent soldiers.  Fortunately, however, there was no
need to fight, as the commander recognised that the war was over.

At night a number of our passengers, of all classes, went ashore to
attend the concert, and one of them known as Cetewayo, _alias_ the Carrib
or the Pirate King, announced his intention of kicking up a great row at
the _casino_ (of course _after_ eleven o’clock), and he was as good as
his word, and others besides, several having to be locked up for the
night.  We visited the soldiers in the barracks, and they were very glad
to have a chat.  We sent them the newspapers we had brought from England;
with which they were greatly pleased.  They told us the numbers, variety,
and voracity of the insects was something maddening; some being busy at
night, and others during the day, and that it was almost impossible to
keep oneself decent.  Altogether Port Saïd must be a dreadful place for
Englishmen to live in; there was very little society, and I was told that
at the time there was only one unmarried lady left.

The commanding officer of the Marines told us that the principal duty
they had to perform as “police” was to keep the English sailors and
visitors in order, almost all the drunkenness and trouble coming from
them—to our disgrace be it said.

The land all along the coast lies very low, and is not seen until the
yellowish-green water near it is reached.  The water is discoloured by
the mud of the Nile, one of the mouths of which (the Tanitic) is situated
a little to the west of Port Saïd.  This ceaseless flow of mud was one of
the greatest difficulties experienced in making the Canal, and
necessitated important and expensive works to prevent its access to the
harbour.  Lake Menzaleh is formed by this Nile mouth, and covers an area
of about 1,000 square miles.  Good wildfowl shooting is to be had there,
and there are numbers of flamingos and other birds.  Port Saïd, as is
well known, owes its origin to the Canal, and is situated on an island
separating Lake Menzaleh from the Mediterranean.  The town was expected
by M. de Lesseps to progress very rapidly—indeed to rival Alexandria, but
it has not gone ahead so fast as he expected.  At present there are about
12,000 people there, and I should say more than half are Europeans.  The
town is built very regularly, and consists of rather temporary brick and
wooden houses.  The making of the harbour was a very difficult work.  It
occupies 570 acres, and is excavated to a depth of 26ft.  Two massive
piers protect it, running out to the sea in a north-easterly direction
for about a mile and a half.  At starting they are 1,440 yards apart,
narrowing to 770 yards, the navigable entrance being about 150 yards
wide.  The piers are constructed of artificial stone, composed of seven
parts of sand from the desert, and of one part of hydraulic lime from
France.  The concrete was mixed by machinery, and then poured into great
wooden moulds, where it remained for weeks, after which the wood was
taken away to allow of the blocks hardening.  Each block weighed twenty
tons, and contained 13½ cubic yards; no fewer than 25,000 of these blocks
were used in constructing the breakwater.  The lighthouse is a very
handsome structure, and is also formed of blocks of concrete; it is
164ft. high, and can be seen twenty-four miles away, being fitted with
the electric light.  (_Baedeker_).

At 4.30 p.m. our vessel started for the Canal, and having safely entered
it made fast for the night, as no travelling is allowed after sunset.
During the evening myriads of gnats and mosquitoes came on to the ship,
the electric light being absolutely dimmed by them in many places, and we
had good reason to expect a trying night from their presence.

While our ship’s doctor and a party of friends were ashore at Port Saïd
they were greatly amused by the attention of a number of Arab lads who
followed them everywhere.  During their walk in the native quarter the
party came upon a great crowd, and one of the young Arabs referring to
the man who had been hanged during the morning stated that the man was
not an Arab, but a Greek, and proceeded to explain the distinguishing
characteristics of the various nationalities represented at this
cosmopolitan port; he said—

“The Greek, he bery bat man, he stab—so (with a vigorous motion as though
stabbing an opponent in the chest).

“’gyptian, he bery goot man, he only slap, so.

“English man, he bery goot man (striking an attitude); he say ‘Come on
and box.’

“English man—he bery goot man.

“English man—he bery goot man.

“Melikan man—he bery goot man.

“Melikan man—he bery goot man.

“’talian man—he bery bat man.”

Ending with a very uncomplimentary allusion to our Irish fellow-subjects.

What is wanted to make Port Saïd really prosperous is a railway from the
interior to bring the produce from the cotton and wheat fields, and then
the steamers which bring the coals could at once load up for home, saving
the necessity of going empty to Alexandria for their homeward freights.
Last year 540,000 tons of coal were sold at Port Saïd, and all the ships
which brought it had to go away empty.  But so long as the Canal Company
are entitled to all the Customs dues at Port Saïd, it is not to be
expected that the Egyptian Government will favour the construction of
such a line.

Some of our fellow-passengers were members of the Blue Ribbon Army, and
although they were by no means obtrusive in supporting their views, being
contented for the most part with wearing the “bit of blue”—others
resented this reasonable liberty, styling it an impertinence, and formed
themselves into an opposition Order, which they called the _Red_ Ribbon
Army, and they busied themselves in enlisting recruits.  It was
noticeable that, with the exception of an old _roué_ or two, only young
men with small heads and long legs, who, if they ever indulged in
reading, confined their choice to books translated or adapted from the
French, composed the rank and file, the officers being older men, who
were not often seen out of the gambling or smoke-room.  One of these
latter was called the “Spider,” because from an early hour in the morning
he sat in the smoke-room waiting to “play” with any who might choose to
try conclusions with him.

The Patron and President of the Society was a noble lord, and certainly a
better choice could not have been made.  Amongst the rules of the Society
were these:—

    Any member found without his red ribbon is to be fined in drinks all
    round.

    Members are to be neither too drunk nor too sober.

    Members must never go to bed quite sober.

    Members must never refuse a drink.

The President certainly set a fair example in his endeavour to perform
the duties of his office, and would never be mistaken for a member of the
Blue Ribbon Army, even if he did not wear the badge, for good wine had
marked him for its own.  Under the fostering influence of such rules and
such a “noble” example, it is not to be wondered at that the Army showed
a blatant front to the enemy, and that their proceedings soon became
disorderly.  At this juncture some good-natured moderate men joined the
Reds, with the view, it appears, of moderating their offensive tactics,
and the result was a manifesto which set forth, amongst other things—That
the Red Ribbon Army entertained no feelings of ill-will toward those who
did not agree with them, and invited all to join their ranks, and that
they assured abstainers that there was always iced water on the sideboard
of the smoke room for their convenience.  One of the chiefs of the Reds
was a dark man, already referred to as Cetewayo, _alias_ the Carrib.  I
one day heard this worthy call one of the Reds to account for appearing
without his badge, the defaulting member replying that he had “resigned.”
“That won’t do,” said the Carrib, “Once a member always a member; come
and pay up.”  Yes, I thought, when the devil has once got his claws in a
man retreat is all but impossible.

Every one of the young fellows who joined the Reds fell into the
“Spider’s” web, and were most of them eased of their spare cash through
the agency of a pack of cards.

This “Spider” was one day on deck sitting by the side of one of my
friends who had just awaked from a doze, to whom he said, “You have had a
nap?”  “Yes,” I said, “Mr. — takes his nap on deck in the face of day,
but you have yours in the dimness of the smoke-room” (alluding to the
game of “Nap”).  “That’s true,” said he, “I like to play when the light
is somewhat dull.  These fellows say I am always winning.  Well, suppose
I am?  They keep coming to me, and in Melbourne if they consult an expert
on any subject they have to pay two guineas, and I take no less.”  “You
take no less, and don’t refuse more,” said I.  “Exactly, that is just
it,” said the Spider, and he was said to have cleared out most of the
card-playing fraternity.  Ultimately, the almost unvaried success of the
Spider caused a general feeling to be raised against him amongst the
gamblers; but as long as there still remained some who had not been
relieved of their money, and others whom the Spider had allowed to win
from him occasionally, this feeling did not exist to any great extent.
One evening, however, the Pirate charged the web-spinner with having
cheated him, and a general disturbance ensued, the Pirate assuring the
Spider that as soon as they quitted the ship he would soundly thrash him
with a whip, which he displayed, so we were in hopes of having a little
excitement on leaving the vessel.  One result, however, was to
practically dissolve the Red Ribbon army, and the Carrib then came out in
a new character.  At the fancy dress ball held on the promenade deck he
appeared in a dress suit, and was at once saluted with the cry, “Here’s a
lark, Cetewayo disguised as a _gentleman_!”

The noble President of the Reds was somewhat of a curiosity in his way, a
very kind-hearted sympathetic man, as many a poor invalid in the second
and third classes could testify.  The doctor told us of many instances of
his lordship’s kindness in visiting some of the sick third-class
passengers, and giving them dainties from his private stores; and I heard
one poor woman tell him she should never forget him for his goodness to
her husband.  Some of our colonial passengers, wishing to make the most
of their unusual proximity to nobility, were too persevering in their
attentions to his lordship, and evidently bored him; but the tact with
which he “shunted” them, and the studied politeness of his language, did
not prevent onlookers detecting a silent “confound their impudence”
terminating each reply.

               [Picture: Cetewayo Disguised as a Gentleman]

Once, in referring to the pertinacity of these people, he remarked to a
bystander, in a hissing tone, “One _must_ be civ-il.”  The noble lord
took a great interest in everything pertaining to sailors; his regard for
them was evidently warm and genuine.  While we were passing through the
Canal, coming to our anchorage for the night, we found the space at our
disposal was very limited, as the vessels were numerous, consequently our
men had to be very active in getting the ship into her berth.  I was
standing by his lordship’s side, looking at the sailors running along the
sandbank, carrying the heavy cable as nimbly as though it was a fishing
line.  Lord — was delighted, and, turning to me, and in his funny fashion
grasping his clothes in front of the place where his stomach should be,
exclaimed in tones of rapture, “Look at our _de-ah_ blue-jackets, look!”

His lordship was very popular with the young men on board, but I hope he
did not often make such observations to them, as one young gentleman
informed me he had made to him, speaking of his past life.  “I have
committed many sins in my time,” said his lordship, “and I hope to live
to commit many more.”



CHAPTER XIII.


Returning from Australia we touched at Colombo, where my companion and a
friend paid an interesting visit to Arabi, who invited them to dine with
him.  It soon became evident that intercourse would have to be conducted
through interpreters, as Arabi understood neither French nor English, and
his visitors were ignorant of Arabic.

My friend was an invalid, and the first dish put on the table caused him
great anxiety, as it was one which his medical man had given him strict
orders to avoid.  What was to be done?  My companion explained to the
invalid that in the East no greater affront could be given to a host than
to decline to partake of what was offered, and so, not having provided
himself with Jack the Giant Killer’s device for disposing of surplus
food, he was fain to eat it, not without certain fearful forebodings.

Arabi’s personal appearance had greatly altered, he having grown a beard
which was turning grey.  At the table with him were his two sons, lads
apparently of ten and twelve years respectively.  On his left sat Fehmi
Pasha, a man of very striking appearance with a face indicating
considerable intellectual power.  Arabi desired to know what the English
thought of him, a question which my companion parried by saying the
English always respected a brave man.  Rising to take leave of the host,
my companion patted the head of the eldest boy in a kindly manner.  This
seemed to move Arabi in a singular way.  He rose and said, in a sharp
tone of command, to his boys, “Salaam,” then, crossing the room and
placing his hand on my companion’s shoulder, said with some emotion, “Ah,
ah, good, good.”

Proceeding on our voyage we called at Aden, a dreadful place, without a
single redeeming feature, in European eyes.  Those of our countrymen who
are compelled to reside here in the service of the country are entitled
to the deepest sympathy of every Englishman.  The possession of Aden is
of considerable importance to England and to India, both as a coaling
station and as a military post, although in the latter respect it is of
less importance than formerly.  The islands commanding the channels at
the entrance to the Red Sea are after all the key to the position, one of
the most important being the Island of Perim, the acquisition of which
does more credit to the _’cuteness_ of the British commander at Aden than
to his sense of honour—that is, if the story told of him be true.  It is
related that one evening, nearly forty years ago, two French war-ships
cast anchor before Aden, and the English governor with a laudable desire
to ascertain the object of their visit invited the commanders of the
ships to dinner.  Unfortunately for France the officers were not
teetotallers, and the weather being hot and the British commander’s wine
strong, the gallant Frenchmen’s tongues were loosened, and the perfidious
Englishman ascertained that the mission with which his guests were
charged was no less than the occupation of the Island of Perim in the
name of Louis Philippe, King of the French!

                         [Picture: Adenese Women]

Without losing a moment the governor sent orders to the captain of the
English gunboat lying at Aden to proceed with all speed and in the
strictest secrecy to take possession of the island in the name of the
Queen!  The sun had risen before the festivities at the governor’s
residence had ceased, and then with many bows his guests departed to
their ships, and shortly afterwards left Aden for their destination.  On
arrival, their astonishment and mortification may be imagined when they
saw on the highest point on the island the British flag flying, and the
gunboat which they had seen at Aden on the previous day anchored close
inshore.  The incident gave occasion for much tall talk at the time on
the part of the fiery French colonels, and, not without reason, I fear,
gave fresh life to the cry of “Perfidious Albion.”

We arrived at Suez in the third week of February, and as soon as our
steamer stopped, our old dragoman Hassan came on board with a huge packet
of letters for us, and although he had only seen us once before, three
years ago, he not only remembered our names but came straight to us and
told us he had brought a boat for our use, and that bedrooms were engaged
for us at the hotel.  We owed all this attention—which was most
seasonable, as I was still suffering from the effects of a malarious
fever contracted in Australia—to Messrs. Cook and Son, who had been
advised of my coming, and here I will say that in Egypt and Syria the
name of “Cook” is the talisman which solves all difficulties and robs
travelling of nearly all its inconveniences.

On landing we were forcibly struck with the altered demeanour of the
people since our previous visit.  On that occasion landing was effected
under the greatest difficulties.  The people seemed to look upon us as
fair prey.  It was almost impossible for us to keep our luggage together,
and the insolent threatening manner in which _backsheesh_ was demanded
was not a little disturbing to those who were visiting an eastern country
for the first time.  But now all was changed; instead of idle excited
crowds loitering everywhere, everyone seemed to be engaged in some work,
_backsheesh_ was rarely asked for, and always in subdued tones, and one
refusal was enough.  Even the donkey boys had been reached, for when
their proffered services were declined they went away with a “thank you.”

The Suez Hotel is kept by an Englishman, and he informed us that during
the war he left it in charge of natives, and found everything safe and in
order on his return.

On the following day we proceeded by railway to Cairo, _viâ_ Ismailia and
Tel-el-Kebir.  At many of the stations British soldiers were on guard, a
part of their duty appearing to be the inspection of the natives’
baggage; this was done amidst much good humour on both sides—indeed, all
through Egypt the British soldier seemed to be on the best possible terms
with the people, as indeed there is every reason why he should be, for it
is certain he has been the means of saving the people of Egypt from a
tyranny of the worst kind—the tyranny of rapacious pachas, civil and
military.  With the usual exclusiveness of our nation, our party of four
had arranged to have the whole of the compartment of the railway-carriage
to ourselves.  It is true we paid extra for the convenience, but at one
of the stations, the train being very crowded, two Frenchmen endeavoured
to enter, being prevented, however, by the Arab conductor.  The
Frenchmen, with much gesticulation and great volubility, pointed out to
the Arab that there were only four persons in the carriage, whereas it
was constructed to take eight; the guard insisted that there were eight
persons in the compartment, although it was patent to all that there were
only four.  “Four!” said the Frenchmen.  “Eight!” returned the guard,
giving us a most wicked wink, which, however, failed to extort
_backsheesh_.  Ultimately our would-be companions were safely bestowed
elsewhere.

The railway passes by the field of Tel-el-Kebir, the entrenchments
stretching as far as the eye can reach.  When my companion went over the
ground a few weeks after the battle it was covered with debris of every
kind, clothing, arms, ammunition, and other ghastly indications of a
battle-field.

In one of the entrenchments my friend found a leaf torn from the New
Testament, while only a yard or two away was a leaf from the Koran, and
hard by he picked up a letter written in Arabic, addressed to a soldier
on the field, requesting him to authorise the writer to collect his rents
in Cairo.

On reaching the station of Tel-el-Kebir we found a number of tourists who
had come up from Cairo to gather curiosities from the battle-field, but
since my friend’s visit in the autumn everything had been cleared off,
and the new comers were gathering pebbles (!) as mementoes of the famous
engagement.

The little grave-yard in which the British troops are buried is situated
near to the station, and appeared to be kept in excellent order.

In Cairo, as in Suez, the absence of the feverish excitement, latent
insolence, and spirit of unrest, so apparent during our last visit, was
very noticeable.  There, too, _backsheesh_ was rarely demanded, and most
of the people seemed to have something to do.

It was curious to see the English soldiers lounging about the town in all
directions.  They seemed to be quite at home.  One of them informed me he
had gone through the Transvaal campaign, but very much preferred the land
of Goshen!

While we were in Cairo we often expressed our wonder that the city was
ever free from cholera or some other deadly epidemic.  The sanitary
condition of the streets and public places was shocking in the extreme.

Fronting the Opera House and the great hotels and Government offices are
the extensive Ezbekiyeh public gardens, enclosed with iron railings.
Around the outside is a very handsome paved footpath, which, although in
the very heart of the city, is in many places utterly impassable because
of the unspeakable horrors accumulated upon it.  If the English
occupation of Egypt does nothing more than cause the towns of that
country to be properly cleansed, it will be the means of saving as many
lives every few years as were lost in the late campaign.

There are two classes of people who undoubtedly view the British
occupation of Egypt with great and well-founded dislike—the military
party and the pachas.  These classes have always played into each other’s
hands, and always at the expense of the down-trodden and patient
fellaheen—the backbone and mainstay of the country.  For the latter class
the presence of the British army is an almost unmixed blessing.

From time immemorial the desirability of connecting the Mediterranean and
Red Seas by a canal has been fully recognised; but the work does not
appear to have been attempted before the reign of Pharaoh Necho, who
undertook to construct a canal between the Nile and the Red Sea.  In
carrying out this work 120,000 Egyptians perished, and before it was
completed the King abandoned it, having been informed by the Oracle that
the foreigners alone would profit by the work.  Eventually the canal was
completed under the rule of Darius the Persian, and of the Ptolemies.

The canal was carried through the lakes Balah and Menzaleh, another
branch being constructed to the Bitter Lakes, into which the fresh water
canal—watering the land of Goshen—emptied itself; but owing to the
constant state of war it fell into decay, and was abandoned.

Many suggestions as to the reopening of the waterway have been made in
almost every generation since.  Bonaparte, during his expedition to Egypt
in 1798, even caused the preliminary works to be undertaken.  His chief
engineer surveyed the ground, but, owing to a serious miscalculation,
threw great doubt on the possibility of carrying out the work.  He
estimated the level of the Red Sea to be nearly 33ft. higher than that of
the Mediterranean, an idea that Leibnitz ridiculed nearly a century
before.  Vigorous protests against Lepère’s theory were not wanting, but
it was, nevertheless, sufficient to cause the abandonment of the scheme
until Monsieur Lesseps directed his attention to the matter.  On his
appointment as an Attaché to the French Mission, Lesseps had to undergo a
lengthy quarantine at Alexandria; here he was supplied with books by his
Consul, among them being Lepère’s memoirs respecting the scheme for
connecting the two seas, the effect of which upon the young Frenchman’s
mind was never effaced.

In 1847 a Commission of Engineers demonstrated the inaccuracy of Lepère’s
observations, and proved that the level of the two seas was practically
the same.  In 1854 Lesseps having matured his plan laid it before the
Viceroy, who determined to carry it out.  Palmerston, then premier, did
his utmost, from political motives, to thwart the enterprise; but early
in 1856 permission was given to commence the work.

Considerable difficulty was experienced in raising the capital, but on
the 25th April, 1858, operations were actually begun.  The Viceroy
undertook to pay many of the current expenses, and provided 25,000
workmen, who were to be paid and fed by the Company at an inexpensive
rate, and were to be relieved every three months.  In order to provide
these men with water 4,000 casks suitable for being carried on camels had
to be made, and 1,600 of these animals were daily employed in bringing
supplies, at a cost of £320 per day.

At the end of December, 1863, the Fresh Water Canal was completed, by
which the Company was relieved of the enormous expense of supplying the
workmen with water.

On the 18th March, 1869, the water of the Mediterranean was allowed to
flow into the nearly dry salt-incrusted basins of the Bitter Lakes, some
parts of which lay forty feet below the level of the Mediterranean, while
others required extensive dredging operations.  The Bitter Lakes have
been identified with the Marah of the Bible (Exodus xv., 23—“And when
they came to Marah, they could not drink of the waters of Marah for they
were bitter”).  The captain of our vessel informed me that in these lakes
the saltness, and consequently the density, of the water is such as to
cause the vessel to rise five inches above the ordinary waterline.

The cost of constructing the Canal amounted to about £19,000,000, more
than a third of which was contributed by the Khedive.  The original
capital of the company in 400,000 shares amounted to £8,000,000, the
difference being raised by loans payable at fixed intervals, and adding
an annual burden to the scheme of £451,000.  The festivities connected
with the opening of the Canal in 1869 cost the Khedive—that is to say the
taxpayer of Egypt—£14,200,000, or more than half the total capital!

The great mercantile importance of the Canal is apparent from the
following data:—Between London and Bombay forty-four per cent. of the
distance is saved by through-going ships; between London and Hong Kong
twenty-eight per cent., and between Marseilles and Bombay fifty-nine per
cent.  Over eighty per cent. of the trade passing through the Canal is
done in British vessels, and in 1875—or six years after the Canal was
opened—the English traffic was equal to twelve times that of the French.

In 1870, 486 steamers, representing 493,911 tons, passed through the
canal, and in 1882 these figures had risen to 3,198 steamers with
7,125,000 tons.  (_Baedeker_).

From Port Saïd the Canal runs in a nearly straight line to Kantara (a
mere group of sheds), its course lying across the shallow lagoon-like
Lake Menzaleh, which has an average depth of only three feet.  The
embankments are low, irregular sand-banks, formed of the dredged
material, and having at the margin of the water a coarse growth of
straggling sedgy-looking vegetation.  After passing Kantara, the Balah
Lakes are reached, and the course is marked out in their open surface by
a double line of buoys.  Then the most difficult portion of the original
work is reached—viz., the cutting of El Guisr, which is six miles long,
the depth from ground-level to surface of water being about forty-five
feet.  This is by far the highest land in the Isthmus.  Leaving the El
Guisr cutting, the open waters of Lake Timsah, (_Crocodile Lake_) are
reached, and far away across its blue mirror-like surface stretches the
double line of buoys, marking out the track.  On the northern shore of
the lake, buried in a delightful mass of vegetation, lies the French town
of Ismailïa, once the great centre from which operations during the
construction of the Canal were conducted, and now one of the principal
stations whence its navigation is controlled by means of telegraph.  Lake
Timsah has an area of some six or seven square miles, and the huge fleet
of war vessels, transports, and tenders which Lord Wolseley used as a
base for his operations in the late campaign lay there without
difficulty.  From Lake Timsah the Suez Canal holds a roughly parallel
course with the Freshwater Canal and the Suez line of railway, and passes
through a long cutting into the Bitter Lakes, an extremely tame and
uninteresting sheet of water some fifteen miles long, with flat, low,
sandy banks, and thence into another long cutting—some twenty-six feet
deep at Shalouf—after which the flat sandy plains of Suez are traversed,
and the head of the gulf reached.

The impression is general that the Suez Canal is cut through immense
deposits of sand, or sand and water, but this is quite erroneous.  The
desert, it is true, is sandy and sterile, but the sand is quite
superficial, covering a gypseous clay, not at all difficult to work in.
From Balah to the Bitter Lakes there is fine muddy sand, with clay at
intervals, and at Serapeum a rocky barrier.  From the Bitter Lakes to
Suez, however, there is a good clay, with limestone at Shalouf.  The
sinuosities in the Canal are such as to render the passage of vessels
over 400 feet long somewhat difficult.  It was expected that these curves
would prevent the washing away of the banks, but it is doubtful whether
they have at all contributed to the preservation of the sandy
embankments.  Indeed, most of the predictions of the early destruction of
the Canal by the operation of natural causes have been proved to be as
ill-founded as such predictions generally are.  The banks have no
ill-regulated propensity for crumbling away.  The Canal is _not_ in
perpetual and imminent danger of being silted-up.  The enormous and
costly dredging operations that were to swallow more than the revenue of
the undertaking are unknown, and the sole matter for regret is that the
Canal was not made as wide again as it is, for the accommodation of the
vast traffic it has created.  Among the many confident prophesies made by
professional engineers of the day, one stands recorded in the technical
papers to the effect that every vessel must necessarily be towed through
the Canal, the explanation being that the regulation speed of five miles
per hour was not sufficient to afford steering “way”; hence, said the
prophet, the slightest wind across the line of the Canal must infallibly
blow ashore any vessel whose commander should have the temerity to
attempt to steam between the two seas.  Experience, however, has shown
that the largest vessels are under perfect command when propelled by
their own engines.

It is impossible for anyone to pass through the Canal without being
impressed with the urgent necessity for vastly increased accommodation
for the constantly augmenting traffic.  The delays occasioned by the
difficulties in coaling, the blocks in the Canal—caused sometimes by the
enormous traffic, and sometimes by the sinking of a ship across the
narrow channel—are most vexatious.  No less than five days elapsed
between the time of the arrival of our steamer at Port Saïd and of its
departure from Suez, a distance of less than one hundred miles.

In every way it is most unfortunate for English commerce that—thanks to
the mulish obstinacy of Lord Palmerston—the management of the Canal
should have been thrown into the hands of Frenchmen; for, while according
the highest meed of praise to M. de Lesseps for his genius, tenacity of
purpose, and energy, in designing and carrying out such a vast
undertaking in the teeth of obstacles which would have daunted most men,
it is impossible to ignore the fact that, as compared with English
traffic-managers, the French officials responsible for the working of the
Canal are vastly inferior in capacity.  The spirit of officialism as
displayed by a liberal use of red tape, and a certain non-elasticity in
carrying out the laws, so familiar to all travellers in France, exists in
an intensified form in the local management of the Canal.  To the
ordinary traveller through the Canal, for example, it seems absurd that
vessels should be stopped for the night while some hours of light remain,
yet as soon as the sun goes down no further advance can be made.  Again,
although daylight comes long before sunrise, it is forbidden to move till
the sun is up.  Then again, experience shows that by the use of the
electric light the largest vessels can be handled with the utmost ease.
An electric light fixed in the foremast of a ship sweeps the Canal from
bank to bank, and for all practical purposes gives a light equal to that
of day; it seems strange, therefore, that vessels possessing such
appliances should not be permitted to proceed during the night.  If one
ventures to make such a suggestion to a Canal official, he at once
replies that the rules laid down for the regulation of the traffic forbid
night passages, and if one further ventures to remind him that the said
rules were made before the introduction of electric lighting, he shrugs
his shoulders and plainly intimates that you have tried his patience long
enough.

A little delegation of authority from the chief office to the pilot or
other Canal official on board the ships would at once result in a vast
diminution of delay, and consequently in an increase to the capability of
the Canal, but the genius of French administration appears to be opposed
to the granting of any latitude or freedom of action to inferior
officials, and so in the administration of the Canal everything is done
by the official at the chief office in Ismailïa, who transmits his orders
by telegraph.

But, after all the practicable improvements in the navigation of the
present Canal have been made, the necessity for a new one will be no less
urgent, and it is especially unfortunate that the Conservative party
should have made negotiations with M. de Lesseps so difficult by openly
suggesting that we should use our accidental supremacy in Egypt to
advance the national interests, without regard to the rights possessed by
him.  Whatever the actual status of M. de Lesseps, under his concession,
may be, it is clear that he has always considered he had a monopoly.  At
the outset he endeavoured to enlist British sympathy and capital in his
undertaking by demonstrating that the bulk of the traffic must
necessarily come from English sources.  Was it probable, therefore, he
would have spent the Company’s capital in making the Canal if, after
having demonstrated its success, an English company were at liberty to
make another, alongside, and take away four-fifths of its traffic?

In business matters the French are proverbially short-sighted.  They fail
to see that “three sixpences are better than one shilling,” and are
consequently unwilling to surrender present advantages without an
absolute certainty of an early and great benefit arising from their doing
so.  They are much more truly a nation of retailers or shopkeepers than
the English are, notwithstanding Napoleon’s famous epithet.  What is
wanted is a greater breadth of view in the administration of the Canal,
and it is in this respect that it is particularly unfortunate there is
not a larger English representation on the Board of Management.  If we
had a representation equal to our share of the capital, the result would
soon be apparent in the adoption of a line of policy giving the utmost
facilities to the Canal’s customers, to the great advantage of both.

The recent discussions upon the Suez Canal question cannot fail to be of
the greatest use to the Government when they reopen negotiations with M.
de Lesseps, and if the latter finds it impossible to make another canal
without a further concession of land, he may probably think it advisable
to conciliate his partner and chief customer by making greater
concessions in return for the influence of the British Government with
that of the Khedive and the Sultan on his behalf.

But even if no further advantages for British commerce be obtained from
the Canal Company, this country occupies a unique position as regards
communication with the East.  In less than fifteen years the whole of the
original cost of the British shares, both principal and interest, will
have been paid out of profits, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer of the
day will have to decide as to the destination of the revenue which the
shares produce.  It appears to me that, after making provision for the
necessary expenses attending the administration of the property, it would
be both just and politic to return the balance to the owners of the ships
whose use of the Canal has been the means of creating the revenue.  If
this course be adopted British commerce will be immensely benefited, for
our ships will be able to use the Canal at a little more than half the
expense falling upon those of other nations, and this great advantage
will have been obtained without having cost the British taxpayer a single
penny.  The money will simply be returned into the hands which
contributed it, and the proposal, therefore, does not in any way partake
of the character of a bounty.

What is known as the Dual Control was established in 1879.  By it the
British and French Controllers-General were invested with considerable
powers over the administration of the finances, in addition to which the
Khedive undertook to assign a certain portion of the revenue for the
discharge of the national obligations.

In the following year a Law of Liquidation, as drawn up by the
Commissioners appointed for the purpose, was issued with the agreement of
all the interested European Powers.

In return for these concessions, the Foreign Bondholders made a
compromise with the Egyptian Government involving the surrender of a
considerable portion of their claims.  This settlement, while relieving
the country from an enormous burden, placed it in a position to meet its
liabilities and to progress in the development of its resources, and, in
the language of Lord Granville in his despatch to Lord Dufferin, “it was
undoubtedly working well for the material prosperity of the country, and
promised to do so for the future;” and in a subsequent despatch the
Foreign Secretary declared that, through the action of the Control, great
advantages had been secured for the natives, such as “the spread of
education, the abolition of vexatious taxation, the establishment of the
land-tax on a regular and equitable basis, and the diminution of forced
labour.”

Our dragoman, an intelligent Copt, fully corroborated Lord Granville’s
statement.  He said that all that the Egyptian people required was
moderate taxation, certainty as to its amount and as to the time of its
collection, and such a military law as would relieve them from the
press-gang.  He further said that before the institution of the Control,
whenever the Khedive wanted a new ironclad, or a new palace, or half a
dozen additional inmates for his harem, he ordered a new tax to be
levied; this tax was sold to some of the rapacious pachas about the
Palace, and resold by them to professional tax-gatherers.  These wretches
committed the greatest atrocities upon the miserable fellaheen, exacting
the uttermost farthing under the threat, and often the actual
application, of torture; “but now,” said my informant, “although the
taxes are heavy, their amount is known, and they are collected in coin
after the harvest has been gathered.”

The country was becoming very prosperous, and there was a surplus in the
Treasury when, in February, 1881, a military riot broke out, originating
in the arrest of certain Egyptian officers, among whom was the Colonel of
the 1st Regiment.  The officers of this regiment broke into the Council
Room of the Ministry of War, ill-treated the Minister, and then, having
released the prisoners, proceeded to the Khedive’s Palace, followed by
the men of the regiment.  In menacing tones they demanded the dismissal
of the Minister of War, and redress for their grievances.  Arabi Bey was
one of the chief actors in this revolt.  The Khedive was compelled to
submit, the mutinous colonels were reinstated, and tranquillity was
restored for the time.

The army officers were not long, however, in showing what their principal
object was, for in a few weeks after the revolt, decrees were issued
increasing the pay of the army and navy to the extent of nearly £60,000 a
year.  The Controllers-General had now become aware that everything was
at the disposal of the military party, and that the Minister could not
guarantee that the officers would not next day insist upon fresh
financial concessions.  The next demand made by the colonels was that
nominations to vacant posts in regiments should rest with them, and this
was granted.  The object of all this was clear enough—indeed, Arabi
declared at one of the meetings of the Commission that “he would not
yield unconditional obedience to the War Minister.”  As time went on
fresh symptoms of disaffection broke out, all indicating the
determination of the military party to throw off all control and
restraint.  In September the Ministry was dismissed at the instance of
these same men, who throughout the remainder of the year continued a
harassing series of turbulent outbreaks, gradually increasing in
audacity, and more and more trenching upon matters of administration.
They went so far as to demand an increase in the army, involving an
annual addition to the estimates of £280,000, although the Controllers
declared that not nearly half that amount was available.

The principal figure in all these outbreaks was Arabi, who steadily kept
himself at the head of the disaffected party, and gradually increased his
influence.  After being appointed Under Secretary of War, then Chief
Secretary, he was described by Sir E. Malet as having become “Arbiter of
the destinies of the country.”  In March he was made Pasha, and the
Khedive was compelled to assent to a number of promotions by Arabi, who
insisted on dispensing with the examination required by law for officers.
In a word, the real power had become vested in the chiefs of the military
party, and the objects of those chiefs were showing themselves more and
more evidently to be, increase of the army, increase of pay and promotion
of a large number of officers to high military rank—the desire of all
such men in every country of the world.

In the following month Arabi caused numerous arrests to be made among the
officers and soldiery in consequence of an alleged conspiracy to murder
him.  Among the prisoners was the Minister of War, who had been dismissed
at the demand of the mutinous regiments in the previous February.  The
prisoners were tried by a court-martial—irregularly constituted—and the
proceedings were kept secret, while no counsel were allowed for the
defence.  It was generally believed that torture had been used to extort
confession.  Forty officers were condemned to exile for life to the
farthest limits of the Soudan.  The Khedive, with great courage, refused
to sanction the sentence, and issued a decree commuting it to simple
banishment from Egypt.

In the meantime the excitement continued to increase, and the Governments
of France and England decided to send a naval force to Alexandria for the
protection of the interests of their subjects in Egypt.  The combined
fleet arrived at Alexandria on the 20th of May.  On June 11th the great
riot and massacre of Europeans took place, Arabi in the meanwhile
erecting new earthworks and strengthening the forts, in spite of his
repeated assurances to the contrary.  On July 11th, the French fleet
having withdrawn, and twenty-four hours’ notice having expired, Admiral
Seymour opened fire on the forts, and after a few hours completely
silenced them; not, however, without his ships having suffered
considerably in the encounter.

The above is a sketch of Arabi’s career from the time of his first coming
into public notice to the time when he became Dictator.  He was at no
pains to conceal his character as a military adventurer, and every
successive step in his career proves him to have been no other.  It is
true that during the last few weeks he appeared to carry the country with
him, which, however, is not difficult to account for, seeing that he was
“master of the legions,” and that detachments of the army had been sent
out into the highways and byways to compel men to come in at the point of
the bayonet.  In ordinary times it is no uncommon thing to see a
chain-gang going through the streets of Egyptian towns composed, not of
criminals, but of unhappy wretches brought in by the press-gang for
service in the army, and should any of them falter in their steps through
weariness or despair, the heavy stick of the driver is always ready to
descend upon their shoulders.  The only effect of the success of the
movement headed by Arabi would have been the perpetuation and extension
of this terrible state of things; and yet this is the man who has been
persistently held up to the admiration of the world as a pure-minded
patriot by a large section of what is called the Peace Party in England.
In the towns Arabi and his agents worked upon the cupidity of the lower
orders by telling them that he intended to drive the foreigners into the
sea, and that their property should be given over to a general loot.  In
the country districts, where the fellaheen are ground down under the heel
of the usurer—always a foreigner, as the Koran forbids usury—Arabi
promised to cancel the village debts, and banish the usurers; {259a}
while in Upper Egypt, where usury is less common, he appealed to
Mohammedan fanaticism.  But nowhere did he appeal to a national
sentiment, {259b} until, indeed, by various devices, he had become
absolute master of the country, when perhaps he thought he might say
_L’Etat, c’est moi_.



CHAPTER XIV.


A wretched journey of over eight hours by rail brought us to Alexandria
shortly before midnight.  A fierce gale with rain prevailed during most
of the journey, and owing to the dilapidated condition of the carriage,
waterproofs were necessary to protect us from the rain, which, in spite
of closed windows, found access to every part of the compartment.  The
line itself and the whole of the rolling stock, were in a miserable
condition of disrepair, and utterly unfit for traffic.

The drive from the railway station to the Hotel Abbat gave us our first
glimpse of the ruin wrought by the rioters.  The raging storm and
drenching sleet were singularly in accord with the scene of desolation
and misery on every hand.  After the long and cold railway journey, and
the drive in the open vehicle from the station, we were in hopes of
finding comfortable quarters in the hotel, but the wretchedness
prevailing outside seemed to have penetrated into every corner of the
establishment.  It was impossible to get anything hot to eat, and the
cold meats were most uninviting.  The proprietor, expecting another train
in about an hour, deferred serving even this cold cheer until its
arrival.  Meanwhile nothing remained for us but to try to warm ourselves
by pacing up and down the scantily-furnished _salle a manger_.

                        [Picture: A Familiar Face]

We were glad to get to bed notwithstanding that the carpets in the
bedrooms were flapping in the wind in the most vigorous manner during the
night.

On rising next morning we found the storm had not abated, indeed it
continued with undiminished fury during the whole of our stay.  Our time,
however, being limited, it was necessary to disregard the weather in
order to visit the scene of the recent operations and the ruins of the
city.  On leaving the hotel our dragoman of three years ago, Kalifa, at
once recognised us, and under his guidance we made a tour of the
fortresses, going first to Ras-el-Tin.  We found the palace of that name,
which forms the landward boundary of the fortress, still partially in
ruins and apparently deserted.  One could not help feeling that the
architect, in selecting such a site for a royal residence, must have
regarded the possibility of an attack upon the fort from the sea as being
too remote to be taken into account.  Some of the other forts had at one
time stood isolated from the town, but apparently it might be said of the
Alexandrians that

    “Exceeding peace had made them bold,”

for the approaches to the forts had gradually been built upon until at
length some of the houses were even erected against the fortifications.
These were the houses which were destroyed during the bombardment, and
the ruin of which gave rise to the impression that the city itself had
been shelled.  All the forts presented the same dismal aspect of ruin.
Shattered ramparts, battered casemates, huge holes in the walls of the
store-houses; the heavy Armstrong guns dismantled, some with the muzzle
pointed high up in the air, others lying on the ground; in all cases the
gun-carriages smashed and crushed into shapelessness; burst shells, and
heaps of stones and mortar lying everywhere; great deep pits in the
ground, showing where an “Inflexible” shell had burst.  The buildings and
ramparts are of loosely-built stonework, hence wherever a shell struck,
it told with full and destructive effect.  Here and there one could see
that a single shell had penetrated a rampart, scattered the earth,
upheaved a heavy Armstrong, and enveloped a casemate in a heap of
demolished masonry.  In Fort Aïda an explosion, which wrecked the whole
place, occurred early in the action.  In the whole of the forts there
were Armstrong guns of great calibre and of modern date.  Their
appearance after the bombardment was most extraordinary: pieces knocked
out of the muzzles, huge slabs sheared out of their sides, and in many
cases the coils pitted with shot marks.  In most places, and at Fort Meks
in particular, the muzzles were burst, but this was the work of the
landing parties shortly after the action.  There can be no question that
the armament of these forts was of a very formidable character, and that
the condition of the fleet after the encounter might have been a very
serious one had the guns throughout been well handled.

After leaving the Forts we went with a friend, long resident in
Alexandria, to Ramleh, the fashionable suburb of the city.  The word
Ramleh means “sand,” and that being so it may be said that no place was
ever more appropriately named.  It is a mere sand waste by the shore, and
its villas are separated by sand wastes.  The effect is somewhat
Australian, and the use of verandahs and Venetian shutters helps the
suggestion.  Our friend’s house was close to what is known as Gun Hill,
that is, where the 40-pounders were, and from his Egyptian roof he could
see Arabi’s advanced position and the whole of the British camp.  At 4
p.m. every day it was the custom to go and see the practice from Gun
Hill.  Mr. A.’s house was open during the whole time, and he told us it
was for the most part more like a picnic than a campaign.  The officers,
however, were frequently called from his billiard table by an alarm from
the camp, and on such occasions Mr. A. had an understanding with them
that should the English be driven in they were to warn him when
retreating past his house by firing a volley through his windows!  There
were of course times of great anxiety notwithstanding the excitement and
interest.

Mr. A. was in Alexandria during the massacre, and at the time of the
bombardment he was only away two days, being the first to return to his
house and live in it.  While there, many of the neighbouring houses were
looted.  His description of the daily shooting of looters reminded one of
the accounts of the latter days of the Paris Commune.  Mr. A.’s garden is
ornamented with heavy English shells, which, he tells his visitors, fell
there—from a cart!

During the afternoon we had a stroll through the European quarter of the
city, and were amazed at the destruction to be seen on every hand.  The
rows of fine houses, the shops, the buildings of the Grand Square, the
Place Mohammed Ali, with its gardens, all a mass of unsightly ruins, from
which workmen were getting out the stones and stacking them up in long
rows on the footways.  We had been pretty familiar with Alexandria, but
in the maze of ruined stonework we were completely at a loss and could
not find our way.  Kalifa, however, came to our assistance, and guided by
him we took a drive through the native quarter, and soon perceived that,
though the destruction by incendiarism was unfortunately greatest in the
European quarter, the _petroleurs_ had not spared their fellows, for many
native houses were burned.  The extent to which property was destroyed is
incredible.  There must be several miles of streets in the sheerest ruin.
The poor shopkeepers of the Place Mohammed Ali now occupy temporary
wooden shanties, and the general aspect of this once gay and opulent
quarter is wretched in the extreme.

We next day paid a visit to Fort Meks, but except that its armament was
somewhat heavier than that of its fellows, there were no new features to
be seen.  The same desolate appearance of ruin and destruction—crippled
gun-carriages, burst guns, crumbling ramparts, and shell-ploughed ground.
This fort, from the accuracy of its gun practice, was the most
troublesome to the fleet.  The five terrible “Armstrongs,” however, lay
burst and useless in the sand drifts, with the rude and forgotten graves
of the poor gunners round about them.

A flood of misplaced eloquence has been expended in denouncing the
conduct of the British Government for having “bombarded and utterly
destroyed a defenceless commercial city,” and the statement has been
repeated so often as to be believed by many; but I will venture to say
that no one will for one moment believe it who has had the opportunity,
as I have, of being conducted over the city and the fortifications by an
intelligent gentleman, an old resident, who was present during the whole
of the operations, and who emphatically denies that the bombardment of
the forts caused any greater damage than I have described.  The charge
has come mainly from the advocates of peace; but it is a misfortune that
such a sacred cause should be damaged by gross exaggerations, and by
statements which it is impossible to sustain.  The cause of peace, like
the temperance cause, has suffered greatly by this habit of exaggeration.

At the _table d’hote_ I sat by an English officer who had been in the
thick of the fight at Kassassin, and who had escaped unhurt; he did not
seem inclined to say much about his experiences on that terrible day, but
he entertained a great respect for the fighting capacity of the Egyptian
soldier when properly led.

During the whole of our stay in Alexandria the weather continued to be
extremely boisterous and very cold, and we were glad to get on board the
P. and O. steamer for Brindisi.  Some Anglo-Indians joined the vessel
here, and we had an opportunity of observing the way in which some of our
countrymen treat native races.

A crowd of Arabs in boats were alongside, offering their wares to the
passengers as they stepped up the side of the ship.  Amongst the rest
there was a man with his little daughter offering raw eggs, beads,
shells, etc.  Two of the Anglo-Indians having bought a dozen of the eggs,
and having stationed themselves in a convenient position on deck,
proceeded to pelt the poor trader, completely spoiling his stock, and
covering him and his child with the contents of the missiles.  During the
voyage these fellows also behaved in a brutal manner towards the native
stewards on board.  It is not to be wondered at that men like these
object to judicial powers over Europeans being extended to natives, for
it is probable that under the operation of the Ilbert Bill they would
stand a fair chance of getting what they do not want—viz., justice.  It
is not difficult to imagine how such men would act towards the natives if
they were a thousand miles away from a court having jurisdiction in cases
of violence on the part of Europeans against natives.

Stay-at-home folks in England usually think of the Mediterranean as being
calm as a lake, bathed in sunlight, and blue as the famous grotto in the
Island of Capri; but such has not been my experience on the three
occasions upon which I have traversed its length.

Once, however, as we were leaving Alexandria, a very beautiful phenomenon
presented itself.  The waters of the harbour were of a dead pale
sea-green while outside the bar the Mediterranean was of an intense,
opalescent, turquoise-blue, so exquisitely beautiful that the attention
of the whole ship’s company was directed upon it.  We presently crossed
the bar and dipped right into this extraordinary colour.  The line of
demarcation was clear and sharp, and lay just outside the harbour.

On reaching the open sea we encountered a furious gale, which continued
with varying intensity until our arrival off Brindisi four days
afterwards—twenty-four hours after time.  The sea, which had been running
high during the whole voyage, made a clean breach of the bridge on the
last evening, necessitating the bringing of the vessel’s head to the wind
and “lying-to” for the night.

On arrival off the entrance to the harbour no pilot was forthcoming, and
it began to be whispered that we should not be permitted to land without
undergoing quarantine; but happily our fears proved to be groundless, and
the captain having run up a signal informing the port authorities of his
intention to go in without a pilot, we were soon alongside, and on
European soil once again.

                [Picture: After the Battle: Up-Ended Guns]

                                * * * * *

                                 THE END.



INDEX.

Albatross, The                                                27 @115}
America (_see also_ United                                     135–178
States)
America—Journey across from San                                    147
Francisco
   Albany                                                          164
   — Schools at                                                    165
   Alkali Plains, The                                              155
   American Language                                               165
   André, Major                                                    167
   Appetising Mottoes and                                          160
Sentiments
   Arnold, General                                                 167
   Bill of Fare, A Curious                                         160
   Blue Gum, The (_illus_)                                         148
   Brigham Young’s Dominions                                       155
   Bright, John                                                    151
   Boats                                                           165
   Bogus Ticket Sellers, Beware                                    157
of
   Buildings, Block of, Removed                                    161
Bodily
   Bull Frogs                                                      149
   Buttes, The                                                     158
   Cañons                                                     152, 157
   Cape Horn                                                       152
   Catskill Mountains                                              165
   Chicago                                                    160, 161
   — Fires in                                                      161
   — Streets in, Equal to Best in                                  161
London
   — Timber Houses still Numerous                                  161
   — Water Supply for                                              161
   Churches, Opposition                                            167
   Corinné                                                         155
   Corn over Ten Feet High                                         147
   — without Manure                                                147
   Country like a Park                                             147
   Cow-Catcher, The                                                154
   Crash, A Tremendous                                             152
   Descent of 8,000 feet                                           159
   Detroit                                                         162
   Devil’s Slide, The (_illus_)                                    159
   Dining Car, A Well-appointed                                    160
   Dollar will Go a Long Way                                       168
   Elevation, Greatest Attained                                    152
   English Gold Refused                                            157
   Eschscholtzias growing wild                                     147
   Eucalyptus, The (_illus_)                                       148
   Falls River                                                     164
   Fields Hundreds of Acres in                                     147
extent
   Fires in Chicago                                                161
   Flowers, Immense patches of                                     147
   Free Country                                                    169
   Gold-Diggings reworked by                                       149
Chinese
   — Track through                                                 148
   Gum Tree, The (_illus_)                                         148
   Hotel, The Grand Pacific,                                       162
Chicago
   Hudson River                                               165, 167
   Identification a Difficult                                      161
Task
   I guess I’ll take your Gold                                     157
   Indians, Dreadful looking                                       149
   — on the War-Path                                               152
   John Scales, Justice of the                                     168
Peace (_illus_)
   Justice, A Dealer in                                            168
   Lake Ontario                                                    164
   Language, American                                              164
   Life on the Road, A New                                         161
Feature of
   Lupins growing wild                                             147
   Marigolds, Patches of                                           147
   Military Academy, West Point                                    167
   Mineral Wealth, Untold                                          148
   Money-Lender complains                                          148
   Monument Rock (_illus_)                                         158
   Mormon Advice                                                   154
   — Tabernacle Visited                                            157
   — Wives lack Cordiality                                         156
   Narrow Escape                                                   151
   Night Attack on Indians                                         153
   Ogden                                                      156, 157
   Omaha                                                           160
   Pacific Railroad, A Single                                      151
Track
   Pallisades, The, Hudson River                                   166
(_illus_)
   Passport Found Useful                                           161
   Pine Forests                                                    149
   Poultry Secured by the Leg                                      169
   Pullman Train, Life on Board                                    149
   Railway Covered with Sheds                                      152
   — on Trestles                                                   157
   — Open to Prairie                                               154
   — Ride, a splendid one                                          177
   Red Sandstone Rocks                                             158
   Ride, A Long (Omaha to                                          160
Chicago)
   Rip van Winkle                                                  165
   River Boats                                                     165
   — Hudson                                                   165, 167
   Rome                                                            164
   Sacramento Valley                                               147
   Saints, Cruel Treatment by the                                  153
   Salt Lake City Beautifully                                      156
Situated
   — (_illus_)                                                     155
   Sambo said “No Sah!”                                            159
   Schools, National, at Albany                                    165
   Snow Mountains                                                  149
   — Travelling through                                            157
   Soil Twenty Feet Deep                                           147
   Steamers on the Rivers                                          165
   Streets in Chicago Equal to                                     161
Best in London
   Sulphur Spring                                                  157
   Syracuse                                                        164
   Taurus Meets the Train                                          154
   Tennyson Claimed as an                                          165
American Author
   Timber Houses still Numerous                                    161
in Chicago
   Train, The Last Over                                            152
   — The, Met by Taurus                                            154
   Trapper’s Story, The                                            153
   Turning Point between East and                                  152
West
   Utica                                                           164
   Water Supply for Chicago                                        161
   West Point, on the Hudson                                       167
   Witches, The                                                    158
American Grievance                                                 128
— Passengers from Honolulu                                         127
Americans not good Sailors                                         127
Ascension, Island of (_illus_)                                      17
Auckland                                                           115
Avoca (_illus_)                                                     67
   Woolgrowers                                                      67
Australian Colonies (_see also_                                    101
Melbourne, Sydney, Victoria,
Tasmania, New South Wales)
   Agricultural Labour, A Fine                                     111
Field for
   Artisans, Skilled                                               110
   Australia, People of,                                           112
Described
   — Young                                                         111
   Climate Exhausting                                              110
   _Ornithorhynchus paradoxus_                                     112
(_illus_)
   Drought, A Ten Months’                                          113
   Education Amply Provided for                                    111
   Emigrate, Who should                                            110
   Free Trade                                                      101
   Labour Market, State of                                         101
   — Unskilled, A Fine Field for                                   111
   Mining Machinery, Perfection                                    107
of
   Platypus, The Duck-billed                                       112
(_illus_)
   Population                                                      120
   — Surplus, Great Field for                                      110
   Postal Arrangements                                             111
   Protection                                                      101
   Railways                                                        111
   Rent of Houses Enormously Dear                                  110
   Schools, First-rate                                             111
   Telegraphs                                                      111
   Wages Higher, but Most Things                                   110
Dearer, than in England
Baby Hippopotamus at Play                                           21
(_illus_)
Ballarat                                                            48
   Botanical Gardens                                                49
   Gold Mine                                                        48
   — (_illus_)                                                      49
   — Smallness of                                                   49
   Gold Raised                                                      49
   Lake Wendouree                                                   49
Bananas                                                            127
Bay of Biscay                                                        5
Betting on Board Ship                                               26
Boat in a Squall off Plymouth                                        2
Brandy or Whisky?                                                  131
Brummagem Shams, where                                              13
manufactured
Burial at Sea                                                      131
Burying the Dead Horse (_illus_)                                    21
Campbell Town                                                       74
   Our Waiter at (_illus_)                                          79
Canada                                                             162
   American Customs Officer’s                                      164
Equipment
   Clifton House, Niagara                                          162
   Desecration, Ruthless                                           163
   Green Fields like those at                                      162
Home
   Great Western Railway                                           162
   London                                                          162
   Niagara, Impressions of                                         164
   Paris                                                           162
   Photographers                                                   163
   Salary, Must Raise, I Guess                                     164
   Suspension Bridge at Niagara,                                   164
Crossing
Centipedes, A Plague of                                            127
Chair, Taking the                                                  129
Coral Reefs                                                   116, 118
Day Dropped                                                        119
Day Gained                                                         119
Duel, Rumours of                                                   121
Educated in Four Colleges                                          130
Egypt                                                          181–268
   Abaid                                                           197
   Abbaseyeh Palace                                                216
   Abbas Pasha                                                     216
   Abraham or Isaac, Old Fellow                                    191
like
   Aden, a Dreadful Place                                          239
   — Importance of                                                 239
   Adenese Women (_illus_)                                         240
   Agricultural Operations                                         223
   Agriculture à la Adam                                           188
   Alexandria                                                      260
   — in Ruins                                                      264
   — not Bombarded                                                 265
   — the Forts after Bombardment                                   262
   Anglo-Indians                                                   266
   Apis Mausoleum, The                                             203
   Arab, A Discerning                                              232
   — An, Hanged                                                    228
   — School in Syria                                               211
   Arabi, Appointed Under                                          256
Secretary of War
   — at Colombo                                                    238
   — Bey                                                           255
   — Causes Numerous Arrests                                       257
   — Erects New Earth-works                                        258
   — How he Recruited his Army                                     258
   — Made Pasha                                                    257
   — Military Adventurer                                           258
   — Moved in a singular way                                       239
   — Principal Figure in                                           256
Outbreaks
   — Visit to                                                      238
   Arabi’s Personal Appearance                                     239
   Arabs, Bedouin                                                  183
   — How Kept in Order                                             181
   — Picturesque Party of                                          181
   Au Revoir (_illus_)                                             225
   Backsheesh                            185, 190, 195, 197, 198, 207,
                                          210, 218, 224, 228, 241, 243
   — not demanded                                                  210
   Balah, Lake of                                             245, 248
   Bazaars, In the                                                 190
   Bedrashên                                                       201
   Beggars                                                         195
   Bellows, not made in                                            191
Birmingham
   Bery cheap, sah! (_illus_)                                      191
   Bethshemish (Heliopolis)                                        220
   Biblical Allusions, How to                                      185
Understand
   Biograph, A Graphic                                             206
   Bitter Lakes, The, Identified                                   246
with Marah
   — Saltness of                                                   247
   Black Guard, A                                                  242
   Blacking a Boy’s Bare Feet                                      186
   Blue Jackets, Look at our                                       237
_de-ah_
   Blue Ribbon Army                                                233
   Boat or Dahabieh                                                215
   Boats, How Propelled                                            181
   Bohemiennes                                                     228
   Bonaparte, Attempts to Reopen                                   245
Suez Canal
   Bond-holders, Foreign                                           254
   Bridal Party, A                                                 192
   Brindisi                                                        267
   British Canal Shares                                            253
Profitable
   — Mission, Schools at                                           211
   Bûlak, A Street in (_illus_)                                    219
   — Suburb of Cairo                                               220
   Bull, The Sacred                                                203
   Burying-ground                                                  202
   Cairo                                                 187, 188, 242
   — Sanitary Condition of,                                        244
Shocking
   — Trades of                                                     188
   — Visit to, by Train                                            184
   Camelcade, A (_illus_)                                          208
   Camelcades                                                      207
   Camels, Strings of                                              207
   Carriages, Ladies’                                              212
   Casinos                                                         228
   Cemetery, An Ancient                                            202
   Cetewayo, _alias_ The Carrib                               229, 234
   — Disguised as a Gentleman                                 235, 236
(_illus_)
   Cheops, Great Pyramid of                                        197
   Children, Naked                                                 208
   Christian, I am a                                               218
   Citadel, The                                                    194
   City, A great                                                   202
   Civ-il, One must be                                             236
   Colombo                                                         238
   Colonels, The, Make further                                     256
Demands
   Concert, A Pleasant, Looked                                     228
Forward to
   Cook and Son                                                    241
   — Name of, a Talisman                                           241
   Coptic Guide offered a                                          190
Commission
   Coral Necklaces                                                 227
   Cotter, Lieutenant                                              229
   Court Martial, Irregular                                        257
   Crocodile                                                       206
   — A dead                                                        216
   — Lake                                                          248
   Crowd, A Motley                                                 181
   Custom-house Examination                                        182
   — occupied by English                                      227, 229
Artillerymen
   Dahabieh or Nile boat                                           215
   Dancers and Howlers                                             210
   Dervishes, The, Dancing and                                     209
Howling
   — The, Supported by Government                                  210
Endowment
   Desert, Prayers in the                                          209
(_illus_)
   Devils, Familiar                                                195
   Donkey Boy, An Egyptian                                         184
(_illus_)
   — My Donkey, good sah                                           184
   Donkey Ride                                                     183
   — across the Nile                                               215
   Donkeys for Nine                                                183
   — Homeward Bound                                                216
   — Names of                                                      183
   — Universal Use of                                              214
   Dragoman (_illus_)                                              182
   Drive to Heliopolis                                             216
   Dual Control, The                                               254
   Dutch Hotel occupied by Royal                                   228
Marines
   Egg-hatching Establishment                                      194
   Eggs, she only steals the Eggs                                  212
now
   Egypt, British Occupation of,                                   244
how Beneficial
   — by whom Disliked                                              244
   Egyptian Character, Saddest                                     220
Side of
   — People, Requirements of                                       255
   Electric Light, The,                                            231
   El Guisr, The Cutting of                                        248
   Embroidery                                                      190
   End, The (_illus_)                                              268
   Englishman perfidious                                           240
   English Representation on                                       252
Board of Management of Suez Canal
not large enough
   Ethiopia shall yet Stretch                                      185
Forth her Hand
   European Buildings, Few                                         183
   Exclusiveness, British                                          242
   Excursion, A delightful                                         208
   Ezbekiyeh Public Gardens                                        244
   Face, A Familiar (_illus_)                                      261
   Fair-day, A                                                     222
   Fakir, A Holy (_illus_)                                    220, 222
   Fehmi Pasha                                                     239
   Fellaheen, The, ground down                                     259
   Fort Aïda                                                       263
   — Meks                                                     263, 265
   — Gemileh                                                       229
   French, A Nation of Retailers                                   252
   — Fleet, The, Withdraws                                         258
   — The, outwitted                                                240
   Fresh-water Canal completed                                     246
   Friday, the Mohammedan Sabbath                                  209
   Gamblers on Board Ship                                          235
   Gentlemen of the Long Robe                                      227
   Gizeh, Pyramids of                                              195
   — Station                                                       201
   Goshen, Land of                                                 244
   — Land of, preferred                                            244
   Governor, A ’cute                                               239
   Graphic Biograph, A                                             206
   Graveyard at Tel-el-Kebir                                       243
   Greek Money-changer                                             226
   Gun Hill                                                        263
   Hassan                                                182, 184, 241
   — Sultan                                                        192
   — Disguised as a Pilgrim                                        192
   — How he Recovered his Throne                                   194
   Heliopolis (Bethshemish)                                        220
   — Drive to                                                      216
   Hens, Laziness of                                               194
   Hippopotamus                                                    206
   Homes, Everlasting                                              207
   Home to Vote                                                    225
   Hostelries                                                      207
   Hotel Abbat                                                     260
   Howlers and Dancers                                             210
   Insects something Maddening                                     230
   Irrigation                                                      223
   — Method of, Described                                          188
   Ismailïa                                                   186, 248
   Jewellers                                                       191
   — Weighing for                                                  191
   Joseph and Mary’s Tree                                          218
   Kantara                                                         247
   Khalifs, The Tombs of the                                       218
(_illus_)
   Khedive’s Gardens, The                                          215
   Khedive, The                                               208, 212
   — The, Compelled to submit                                      255
   Koran, The, in Competition                                      189
with Threepenny Pieces
   Labour, Forced, a Painful                                       187
Sight
   Lady, The Last Unmarried                                        230
   Lake Menzaleh                                              230, 247
   — Timsah                                                        248
   Lakes, The Bitter                                          245, 249
   Law of Liquidation                                              254
   Lepère’s Theory                                                 245
   — Proved Incorrect                                              245
   Lesseps, M., Detained at                                        245
Alexandria
   — Matures his Theory                                            246
   L’etat, c’est moi                                               259
   Leviathan, Job’s Reference to                                   207
   Lucullus                                                        259
   Lily, Painting the                                              186
   Luggage, A Lady’s                                               184
   — How Treated                                                   181
   Mameluke Dynasty, The Last of                                   218
   Mamelukes, Massacre of                                          194
   Manufacturing Quarter                                           191
   Mariette exhumes the Serapeum                                   203
   Marines                                                         229
   — as Police                                                     230
   Mausoleum, The Apis                                             203
   Mecca Pilgrims, Rendezvous of                                   216
   Mediterranean, The                                              267
   — Waters of, Flow into Bitter                              246, 248
Lakes
   Member, Once a, always a                                        234
Member
   Memphis                                                         202
   — Ancient, Site of                                              201
   — Little more than a Name                                       202
   Menzaleh, Lake of                                               245
   Military Riot                                                   255
   Mitrahineh (site of Ancient                                     201
Memphis)
   Mohammed Ali, Mosque of                                         194
   Money-Changers’ Liberality                                      227
   Monument, Most Ancient in the                                   202
World
   Mosque of Sultan Hassan, Visit                                  194
to
   — The, of Sultan Hassan                                         193
(_illus_)
   Mother, Son thrashes her only                                   212
once a month
   Mud, Great Difficulty in                                        230
Making Canal
   Museum, The National, for                                       222
Egyptian Antiquities
   Mutinous Conduct                                                256
   Naval Force sent by France and                                  257
England
   — Arrival at Alexandria                                         257
   Nap on Deck                                                     234
   Necropolis, Ancient                                             202
   Nile-boat, A                                                    216
   Nile, The                                                       187
   — Valley of                                                     188
   — View on the (_illus_)                                         198
   Nobleman, The Languishing                                       184
   Noph (Memphis)                                                  202
   Nubians Reported to be                                          229
Excellent Soldiers
   Obelisk, The Oldest in Egypt                                    218
   Octroi, or Town Tax                                             216
   On (Heliopolis)                                                 220
   Orgies, Pious                                                   210
   Orient, The Steamship                                           186
(_illus_)
   — a Magnificent Steamship                                       181
   Orphans, Venerable                                              224
   Palmerston, Lord, thwarts                                       246
Lesseps
   Palms, Oranges, and Lemons                                      218
   Patriarchal Group, A                                            197
   Pebbles as Mementoes of                                         243
Tel-el-Kebir
   Peep, A (_illus_)                                               190
   Penny, New, Refused                                             185
   People, Vast Numbers with                                       185
Nothing to do
   Perim, Island of, how acquired                                  239
   Pious Orgies                                                    210
   Police, The, Armed with Long                                    216
Spikes
   Port Saïd                                                  230, 247
   — a Dreadful Place to Live in                                   230
   — Harbour                                                       231
   — Lighthouse                                                    231
   — Railway wanted to                                             232
   Power vested in Military Party                                  257
   Prayers in the Desert                                           209
(_illus_)
   Predictions, Ill-founded                                        249
   President, The, of Red Ribbon                                   235
Army
   Pyramid, Ascending the Great                                    196
(_illus_)
   — The great Step                                                202
   — The Oldest                                                    202
   Pyramids, Road to                                               187
   — The                                                           216
   — The, First View of                                            187
   Quarantine                                                      268
   Ramleh                                                          263
   Ramses II, Statue of                                            202
   Ras-el-Tin                                                      261
   Red Tape                                                        250
   — Ribbon Army                                                   233
   Rendezvous of Mecca Pilgrims                                    216
   Revoir, Au (_illus_)                                            225
   Riot and Massacre of Europeans                                  257
   Rotten Row of Cairo, The                                        212
   Runners or Saïs, The (_illus_)                             212, 212
   Sabbath, the Mohammedan                                         209
   Safes, obviously of English                                     191
Manufacture
   Saïs, The                                                       212
   Sacred Bull, Burying-place of                                   203
   Sakkara, To                                                     201
   Sand, A good Preservative                                       205
   Sarcophagus, A huge                                             203
   School, An Arab, in Syria                                       211
   — Interrupted                                                   189
   Schoolmaster’s, A,                                              211
Disappointment
   Schoolmaster, The, Abroad                                       189
(_illus_)
   — The, asks for Backsheesh                                      190
   Schools, Miss Whateley’s                                        211
   Sculpture, Life-like                                            222
   Selim, Sultan                                                   218
   Serapeum, The (_illus_)                                    203, 204
   Seymour, Admiral, Opens Fire                                    258
on Forts
   Shalouf                                                         248
   Shave, A, and a Wash (_illus_)                             199, 199
   Ship of the Desert, A Wrecked                                   223
   Shoeblacks                                                      186
   Shops Tiny                                                      182
   Shubra Avenue, In (_illus_)                                     214
   — The                                                           212
   Simon Stylites                                                  220
   Soldier, British, in Egypt                                      242
   Soldiers, English, quite at                                     244
home
   — glad to have Newspapers                                       230
   Sphinx, The                                                     216
   — The (_illus_)                                                 199
   Spider, The                                           233, 234, 235
   Spider’s Web, The                                               234
   Statue, A, Four Thousand Years                                  222
old
   Stick, The Heaven-sent                                          198
   Story-teller, A                                                 222
   Storytellers, Professional, at                                  188
Cairo
   Strabo, on the Serapeum                                         203
   Street in Bûlak (_illus_)                                       219
   Streets of Suez Narrow                                          182
   Suez                                                       241, 248
   — Arrive off                                                    181
   Suez Canal, A new Canal wanted                                  252
   — British Traffic through                                       247
   — Cost of Constructing                                          247
   — Does not silt up                                              249
   — Embankments of                                                247
   — Erroneous Impressions                                         249
   — Festivities on Opening                                        247
   — First Undertaken by Pharaoh                                   244
Necho
   — French Officials inferior in                                  250
capacity
   — French short-sighted in                                       252
Business Matters
   — In the (_illus_)                                              226
   — Lesseps’ Monopoly                                             252
   — Lesseps, M. de                                                250
   — Mercantile Importance of                                      247
   — Necessity of increased                                        250
accommodation
   — Operations begun                                              246
   — Palmerston, Lord, Obstinacy                                   250
of
   — Restrictions Absurd                                           251
   — Ships not allowed to move                                     251
after Sun-down
   — Sinuosities of                                                249
   — Steamers under perfect                                        250
control
   — Suggestion, A                                                 253
   — How to deal with Profit                                       253
   — The                                                           244
   Suez Hotel                                                 182, 242
   — Streets of, Narrow                                            182
   Sultan, Selim                                                   218
   Tel-el-Kebir                                               242, 243
   Temple, Underground                                             201
   Tih, The Tomb of                                                205
   Timsah, Lake, Lord Wolseley’s                                   248
base of operations
   Tomb of Tih (_illus_)                                      205, 206
   Tombs of the Khalifs (_illus_)                                  218
   Torture, A Novel Instrument of                                  220
   Town Tax, The, or the Octroi                                    216
   Treasures, Buried                                               201
   Tree, The Virgin’s                                              218
   Umbrellas, A New Use for                                        181
   Villages, Dreadful Mud                                          207
   Virgin’s Tree, The                                              218
   Wash, A, and a Shave (_illus_)                             199, 201
   Wash Basin, An Impromptu                                        229
   Washing Hands, A Primitive                                      199
Mode of
   Water-carriers (_illus_)                                        215
   Weigher for the Trade                                           192
   Whateley’s, Miss, Schools                                       211
   What lack ye?                                                   226
   Wild Fowl Shooting, Good                                        230
   Words which Broke no Bones                                      182
   Zagazig                                                         187
Equator, Heat at                                                    24
Faces too Dark to be Seen                                          122
Falmouth                                                            63
   Beach and Sands                                                  71
   Burial-place (_illus_)                                           70
   Cockney Sportsman                                                71
   Der Dichter Spricht                                              65
   Epping Forest                                                    67
   Hotel (_illus_)                                                  69
   Land of Snakes                                                   64
   Magpies                                                          63
   River Esk                                                        64
   Stoney Creek                                                     64
Fernshaw                                                            53
   Hard Fare                                                        53
   Pioneering                                                       53
Fiji Children ask for More                                         117
   — Islands                                                       116
   — Native of (_illus_)                                           117
Fingal                                                              67
Fire Brigade Practice                                              119
Flying Fish                                                         27
Free Trade                                                          99
Gambling on Board Ship                                              26
Golden Gate, The                                                   131
Gum Trees, A Forest of                                              51
— (_illus_)                                                     52, 53
Habits of Islanders acquired                                       128
Healesville                                                         51
   A Soafler                                                        51
   Hotel Accommodation                                          51, 56
   Remedy, a Sovereign                                              58
Hobart Town                                                         77
   Fern Tree Valley                                                 78
   Harvest in February                                              78
   Jericho to Jerusalem, via                                        78
Bagdad
   New Norfolk                                                      78
Homeward Bound                                                     127
Honolulu, Arrival at                                               122
   Baby Sold for a Dollar                                          126
   Breakfast ordered Overnight                                     122
   Brownie, Quite a                                                125
   Chairs or Seats usually absent                                  126
   Children described                                              124
   Country very Poor                                               125
   Dragon-flies, numerous                                          124
   Dressmaking not a difficult                                     124
Art
   Faces too Dark to be Seen                                       122
   Fire-flies                                                      122
   Flowers of the most brilliant                                   124
colours
   Grass green and beautiful                                       124
Hawaiian Islands, King of,                                         123
Landlord of Hotel
   Healthiness of                                                  127
   Heathen Chinee, his Tricks not                                  123
in Vain
   Hotel                                                           122
   Houses made chiefly of Rushes                                   126
   Islanders _en fète_                                             121
   Letters, Glad to be Rid of                                      125
   Library                                                         125
   Museum                                                          125
   Natives Dressed in Splendid                                     124
Colours
   Parliament House                                                125
   Passenger Overboard                                             121
   Perfume of Tropical Flowers                                     122
   Pilots Decline to go out for                                    121
Vessels
   Race fast dying out                                             125
   Ruth, the King’s Sister                                         127
(_illus_)
   Servants gone Home                                              122
   Squatting on Ground Prevailing                                  126
Custom
   Supper not to be had                                            122
   Temperature of                                                  127
   Vegetation of                                                   124
   Village, Native                                                 126
   Villas Pretty and Numerous                                      126
   Waiters Celestial                                               123
   Water, Thoughts when Under                                      121
   Women’s Clothing, Scanty                                        124
   Women Stately Looking                                           124
Honolulu, Hotel at                                                 122
Horse, Burying the Dead (_illus_)                                   21
Hotel Experiences                                                   67
I guess the seat is dry now                                        129
Irish Bulls, where manufactured                                     13
Islanders _en fète_                                                121
Jefferson Brick, Junior                                            129
Jerra Jerra                                                         96
Kandavu                                                            115
Knife Trick, The                                                   130
Life on Board Ship (see Ship—Life                                 3–39
on Board)
Lyre Bird, The (_illus_)                                            59
Launceston                                                          61
   Bees in Mourning                                                 62
   Cicadas                                                          61
   Cora Linn                                                        63
   Pomona’s Temple                                                  62
   Snakes                                                           61
   Tamar River                                                      61
   Tasmanian Hospitality                                            62
   Tonsorial Palace                                                 62
   Tree Locusts                                                     61
Marysville                                                          56
   Stephenson Falls                                                 56
Meal, a good square one preferred                                  121
on Shore
Melbourne (_see also_ Victoria)                                     39
   Berry Ministry, the                                              43
   Black Death at                                                   40
   Black Spur Mountains                                             50
   — (_illus_)                                                      56
   Building Trade at, Depressed,                                   102
Results
   Bush, The                                                        50
   Description of                                                   41
   Education                                                        42
   Exhibition at, why decided on                                   102
   Happy Land                                                       46
   Hobson’s Bay                                                 39, 80
   Hot Winds                                                        47
   Natural History Museum                                           42
   Old Debts, a New Way to Pay                                      45
   Overland from Sydney                                        94, 100
   Parliamentary Procedure                                          43
   Parliament, Houses of                                            45
   — Payment of Members of                                          44
   Protection                                                      102
   Revisited                                                        79
   Roads                                                            50
   Sanitary Arrangements,                                           47
Defective
   Stage Coaches                                                    50
   Streets wide and long                                           103
   Tall and Fat a street sweeper                                    48
   Tramways opposed by Cabmen                                      103
   Vineyards                                                        50
   Yarra Yarra River                                                60
Mister                                                             130
Moighty Dry                                                        130
Native Dish called Poi                                             128
New South Wales (see also Sydney)                                  107
   Acres Many, Men Few                                             107
   Agricultural Machinery,                                         108
Imported
   Artisans Attracted from                                         109
Victoria
   Customs Revenue, Increase of                                    110
   Employment Abundant                                             107
   Exports, Increase of                                            110
   Free Trade Colony                                               107
   Hudson Bros, Limited                                            108
   Immigration Larger than in                                      109
Victoria
   Imports, Increase of                                            110
   Imports in 1782 and 1881                                        109
   Industry, A Native, Created                                     108
   Labour, Increasing Demand for                                   109
   Machinery, Agricultural and                                     108
Mining, Imports of
   — Mining, Demand for                                            107
   Manufacturing Concern, Largest                                  108
in Colony
   Men Few, Acres Many                                             107
   Mining Machinery, Imports of                                    108
   — Machinery, Perfection of                                      107
   Policy Opposite to that of                                      107
Victoria
   Population Attracted                                            109
   — Constantly Increasing                                         107
   — Increase of, in Ten Years                                     110
   — Room for More                                                 109
   Prosperity, Evidences of                                        107
   Railway System, Vast and                                        107
Expanding
   Sawmills, Steam, at Sydney                                      108
   Shipping                                                        107
   — Development of                                                109
   — During last Thirty Years                                      109
   — Repairing Yards Removed from                                  109
Victoria
   Timber, Native Better than                                      108
Imported
   Trade, Import and Export                                        107
   Victoria Contrasted with                                        107
Oatlands                                                            78
   The Gaol                                                         79
Pacific Ocean belies its Name                                      115
Parson, The, Quite at Sea                                           16
   A Man of Peace now                                               30
   Colonists’ complain of                                           32
   Congregation, Secures a                                          16
   Drain Pipes, how they are made                                   30
   Mixes his Degrees                                                31
   Sermon on Geology                                                16
   Water Pumped from a Mine                                         16
Twelve Miles Deep
Passenger, Death of                                                130
   — falls Overboard                                               121
Personal Difficulties                                              120
   — Favour, As a                                                  131
Pilots Decline to go out for                                       121
Vessels
Protection                                                     39, 100
Salt Water good for the “Spin-ial                                    7
Orgins”
San Francisco                                                      131
   Baggage Master                                                  147
   Business Activity                                               138
   — Men, Sharp                                                    140
   Carriages, Hackney                                              144
   Character, Bad Better than                                      139
None
   Chinaman, Am claimed as a                                       144
   Chinese Close Shavers                                           141
   Chinese Pigtails (_illus_)                                      142
   — Joss Houses Visited                                           143
   — Quarter Full of Interest                                      141
   — Numerous                                                      140
   — Quarter Explored at Night                                     143
   — Theatre Visited                                               143
   — Washer_men_                                                   137
   — Wedding                                                       143
   Civilisation and Barbarism                                      137
Face to Face
   Climate Delightful                                              145
   Correspondent, A Familiar                                       138
   Darwin would have been                                          142
Delighted
   Dodge, A Favourite                                              139
   Earning a Cent anyhow                                           132
   English Fittings                                                137
   Entrance to Harbour Sighted                                     131
   Fire Brigades                                                   144
   Flats and Sharps                                                139
   Golden Gate, The                                                131
   Governor, Qualifications for a                                  140
State
   Habit, The National                                             138
   Hackney Carriages                                               144
   Heat and Dust Terrible                                          147
   I Guess you are Going to                                        140
England
   Jarrett, A. J. C.                                               138
   John Chinaman                                                   141
   Knife and Fork, only One at                                     138
Meals
   Lady Doctors Numerous                                           140
   Luggage, Arrangements for,                                      147
Excellent
   Min-ne, Little                                                  141
   Mister, Last of (_illus_)                                       146
   My Wife is Dead                                                 138
   Pacific Seal                                                    145
   Palace Hotel                                               135, 137
   Police, Messenger from Chief                                    139
of
   Sea-lions                                                       145
   Seal Rocks (_illus_)                                            145
   Starching, a Fine Art                                           137
   Streets, Handsome                                               138
   Tang-y, A Chinese City                                          144
   Tang-ye, Proof of Celestial                                     144
Origin
   Temperature                                                     145
   Tobacco Chewing and its                                         138
Consequences
   Tramways                                                        144
   Volunteers                                                      144
   Yosemite Valley                                                 146
San Francisco, Voyage to                                      113, 132
Sharks                                                          18, 30
   — don’t like Dark Skins                                         118
Ship-Life on board                                                   3
   Albatross                                                        27
   Bay of Biscay, Nor’-wester in                                     6
   Bazaar                                                           34
   Betting                                                      26, 38
   Blatant Beast, The, fires a                                      25
Revolver
   Burying the Dead Horse                                           21
   Cabin’d, Cribb’d, Confin’d                                        3
   Cape Otway                                                       38
   Captain not so fond of                                           12
Progress as the Passengers
   Captains, why they are Tories                                    13
   Cat Chase                                                        26
   Collisions at Sea                                                29
   Colonial Statesman beaten but                                    39
not vanquished
   Concerts and Recitations                                          9
   Congregation, How to Secure a                                    16
   Consumptive Patients sent too                                     5
late
   Cross-signalling                                                 35
   Danite Band, The                                                 33
   Death and Burial at Sea                                          15
   Dolphins                                                         27
   Dolphin, the “Classic”                                           28
(_illus_)
   Dramatic Performance                                             35
   Exhibition, Fine Art                                             35
   Fellow-passengers                                                 4
   First Night on Board                                              3
   Flying Fish                                                      27
   Gale off Cape Leeuwin                                            38
   Genial Captain (_illus_)                                         11
advantageous
   German Lady, old but lively                                      19
   Hobson’s Bay                                                     39
   Illness of Passengers                                            14
   Incident in Cornwall recalled                                    24
   Ixion goes mad                                                   14
   Letters Home                                                     29
   Life Friendships formed                                           4
   Love your Enemies                                                17
   Melbourne, Arrive at                                             39
   Music not always harmonious                                      10
   Night-walkers a nuisance                                          9
   Nor’-wester in the Bay of                                         6
Biscay
   Parson Mixes his Degrees                                         31
   Pilot Fish                                                       28
   Passengers paying their                                          30
Footing
   — divided into Sets                                               3
   Peal of Hand-bells                                               16
   Portuguese Man-of-War                                            28
   Private Convict System                                            4
   Quoits a selfish Game                                             9
   Rolling Forties                                                  38
   Scarlet Lady                                                     20
   Sea-sickness, Cure for                                            6
   Sermon on Geology                                                16
   Sharks                                                       18, 30
   Ship in full Sail                                                29
   Short and Stout                                                  25
   Soup too Salt                                                    19
   Sports (_illus_)                                                  8
   Spurgeon’s Evangelist                                            32
   Squall near Madeira                                              12
   Steward’s Life a hard one                                         7
   Tall and Fat                                                     25
   Tristan d’Acunha                                                 38
   Tropical Heat                                                 8, 24
   Tropical Phosphorescence                                         33
   Newspaper                                                        10
   Water Pumped from Twelve Miles                                   16
Deep
   Wild Spirits carry on                                            25
   Whale                                                            30
Ship’s Doctors                                                     120
Snakes                                      61, 64, 68, 72, 73, 74, 97
Spurgeon’s Evangelist                                               32
Steward, A Negro                                                   115
St Mary’s (_illus_)                                                 68
Supper, Too late for                                               123
Sunday at the Fiji Islands                                         116
Sydney (_see also_ New South                                        80
Wales)
   Ants                                                             90
   Bail-up                                                          89
   Bathurst                                                         89
   Blue Mountains                                                   84
   Botanical Gardens                                                82
   Bullock Team on Blue Mountains                                   94
(_illus_)
   Bush Hut (_illus_)                                               95
   Bushrangers                                                      89
   Cottage, Mount Victoria                                          86
(_illus_)
   Education Act, The, Amended                                      92
   Excise Act                                                       92
   Falls, The Weatherboard                                          87
(_illus_)
   Great Goat Sucker, The                                           90
   Harbour (_illus_)                                                80
   Hartley Vale, Descent to                                         88
(_illus_)
   Harvest on New Year’s Day                                        95
   Hotels, Primitive                                                84
   Laughing Jackass, The                                            90
(_illus_)
   Lithgow                                                          88
   Manufacturing Concern, Largest                                  107
in Colony
   Oysters                                                          83
   — on Trees                                                       84
   Political Situation                                              92
   Saw Mills, Steam                                                108
   Sheep Runs                                                       95
   Southerly Buster, A                                              83
Sydney to Melbourne Overland                                   94, 100
   Albury                                                           98
   Ants                                                             96
   Axles, Imported                                                 108
   Bush, The                                                        96
   Carriage Furniture, Imported                                    108
   Drought of Ten Months’                                          113
duration
   Endurance of Post-horses                                         98
   Euroa                                                           100
   Free Trade at                                                   108
   Germanton                                                        96
   Hay, Price of                                                   113
   Hudson Brothers (Limited)                                       108
   Industry, A Native, Created                                     108
   Jerra Jerra                                                      96
   Kelly’s Exploits at Euroa                                       100
   Magpies, Large                                                   96
   Railway Rolling Stock                                           108
Manufacturers
   Rain, Downpour of                                               114
   River Murray                                                     99
   Royal Mail                                                       96
   Sheep, Loss of                                                  114
   Shipping during last thirty                                     109
years
   Sighing for Old England                                          97
   Snakes                                                           97
   Springs, Imported                                               108
   Timber, Native Better than                                      108
Imported
   Tommy, a youthful Driver                                         98
   Town, An Up-country (_illus_)                                    98
   Vineyards                                                        99
   Wagga Wagga                                                  95, 96
   Wheels, Imported                                                108
   Wodonga                                                          99
Sydney to San Francisco                                       113, 132
Tasmania                                                            75
   Farms large in size                                              75
   Good Roads                                                       75
   Hawkers                                                          76
   Mount Wellington (_illus_)                                       76
   River Derwent                                                    75
   The Rabbit and the Thistle                                       75
Teneriffe (_illus_)                                                  7
Travelling by Rail and Ship                                          1
compared
Tree Ferns                                                      52, 56
Tristan d’Acunha, Island of                                         36
Tropical Heat                                                    8, 24
   — Phosphorescence                                                33
Tropics, In the (_illus_)                                           40
Turtles                                                             18
United States                                                      169
   Americans would Become our                                      176
Competitors
   Artisans (American) not Better                                  176
Off than British
   — Wages and Holidays                                            174
   Baggage Arrangements                                            171
Convenient
   — Described                                                     171
   Books Dear                                                      170
   Cabmen Disgusted                                                171
   Cadgers, In England such Men                                    176
would be Called
   Calicoes Consigned to England                                   173
   Charges Simply Monstrous                                        170
   Children without Shoes and                                      177
Stockings
   Climate more Trying than that                                   174
of England
   — of America Exhausting                                         176
   Competition Become Exceedingly                                  175
Fierce
   Considerably Sold                                               178
   Corruption among Officials                                      169
   Cotton Mill Operatives from                                     175
Germany, etc.
   Dear America                                                    170
   Dinner, Charge for a Plain                                      170
   Engine, The Largest, in the                                     172
World
   Exhibition, The Centennial,                                169, 171
Philadelphia
   Exports Limited by Protection                                   175
   Factory Operatives’ Wages                                       174
Lower than in Lancashire
   Fair Trade Agitation                                            174
   Fortunes, Colossal, Built up                                    176
under Protection
   Freedom for Tongue and Foot                                     177
   Free Trade and Wages                                            174
   — not an Unmixed Blessing                                       176
   — under, Wider Distribution of                                  176
Material Comfort
   Holidays Fewer than in England                                  174
   Hours of Labour Longer than in                                  176
England
   — Longer than in Lancashire                                     174
   Improvements (so-called) in                                     172
Manufactures
   Labour, Honest, Avoided                                         176
   Liquor Traffic Presents Many                                    177
Difficulties
   Living, Cost of, Higher than                                    174
in England
   Loafers Numerous                                                176
   Negro Labour does not Flood                                     177
the Markets
   Newspaper Inferior and Dear                                     170
   New York                                                        169
   Officials, Corruption among                                     169
   Over-production                                                 173
   Philadelphia                                                    171
   Protection, An Argument for                                     173
   — and Wages                                                     174
   — Doomed                                                        175
   — Wages Steadily Declining                                      176
under
   Railway Charges Moderate                                        171
   Rich, but Honest                                                169
   Slave Experiences                                               177
   Something Hot                                                   178
   Steamboat Charges Moderate                                      171
   Sunday Traffic Perplexing                                       177
   Teetotal Lecture, A Regular                                     178
   Temperance Lecture, The First,                                  178
they had Heard
   Tools, Inferior                                                 172
   Wages Higher, but Balanced by                                   176
Extra Cost of Living
   — Higher, not a Full                                            176
Equivalent
   — Lower than in 1860                                            174
   — Steadily Declining under                                      176
Protection
   — with Free Trade and                                           174
Protection
Victoria (_see also_ Melbourne)                                    101
   Agricultural Industries not                                     105
Protected
   — Heavily Taxed                                                 105
   Artisans Attracted to New                                       109
South Wales
   Books, Can Produce Her Own                                      104
   Cabby Overrides the Tramway                                     103
   Country Districts Sparsely                                      101
Populated
   Customs, Revenue, Stationary                                    110
   Depression of Building Trade                                    102
at Melbourne
   Dog Subsisting on His Own Tail                                  102
   Duty on Imports Demanded                                        103
   Exhibition at Melbourne why                                     102
Decided on
   Exports, Increase of                                            110
   Fiscal Policy, Vicious                                          105
   Food, Taxation of, not                                          105
Permitted
   Free Trade—the _Argus_                                          104
   — for Raw Materials                                             103
   Government, Quite Right to                                      106
Cheat the
   Immigration, Grants in Aid of                                   105
   Imported Manufactures Heavily                                   101
Taxed
   Imports, Increase of                                            110
   Laws, Evasion of, by                                            106
Protectionists
   Locomotives Costly                                              104
   — Required                                                      104
   Manufacturer’s Profit not                                       104
quite enough
   Manufacturers Require Larger                                    105
Field
   Minerals, Home Demand for,                                      105
Small
   — Mainly Exported                                               105
   Mining Industries not                                           105
Protected
   — Machinery Heavily Taxed                                       105
   Native Industry, In Interests                                   104
of
   Natural Resources Neglected                                     102
   New South Wales, Contrasted                                     107
with
   Population Concentrated in                                      101
Large Towns
   — Increase of, in Ten Years                                     110
   — (Manufacturing) Growing                                       102
Faster than its Customers
   — not Retained                                                  101
   — Larger, a Great Want                                          105
   — Room for Larger                                               105
   Prices sufficiently High                                        104
   Printed Books should be more                                    104
Heavily Taxed
   Printing Materials, Suggestion                                  104
to Tax
   Protected Industries for a                                      103
Limited Time
   — Manufacturers not Happy                                       106
   Protection Demanded by                                          102
Manufacturers
   — Effect on Money                                               106
   — in its most Pronounced Form                                   101
   Protectionist Newspapers                                        103
   Railway Stores                                                  105
   Shipping—Repairing Yards                                        109
Removed to New South Wales
   Tramways Opposed by Cabmen                                      103
   Tariff Revision Committee                                       103
   Working Classes Jealous of                                      105
Competition
   Work, Legislature Expected to                                   102
Supply
   Workpeople very Independent                                     107
Voyage, Author’s First, to                                           5
Australia
Waterspout                                                         119
Water, Thoughts when Under                                         121
White Squall, The                                                   35
Yankee Journalist described                                        129
Yankee’s Inquiry                                                   128

NOTES.


{226}  In a former chapter I gave an account of a voyage to Australia by
way of the Cape of Good Hope.  On a subsequent visit to the Colonies I
went by the Canal route, returning through Egypt overland.

{259a}  It is understood that the Khedive’s English financial adviser is
about to take in hand the case of the Fellaheen versus the Usurers.  It
may aid him to know how a similar state of things in a neighbouring
country was dealt with about 2000 years ago.

    “Lucullus, Roman general, in his wars against Mithridates, having
    occupied many cities in Asia which had long been a prey to
    tax-farmers and usurers, undertook to relieve the people from the
    extreme misery to which they had been reduced, and set about
    redeeming the properties given as security to the rapacious
    money-lenders.  He first greatly reduced the rate of interest;
    secondly, where the interest exceeded the principal he struck it off.
    He then ordered that the creditor should receive the fourth part of
    the debtor’s income, but if in making his claim any creditor had
    added the interest to the principal, it was utterly disallowed.  By
    these means, in the, space of four years, all debts were paid, and
    the lands returned to the rightful owners.”—_Plutarch’s Lives_.

{259b}  Report of Mr. Villiers Stuart, M.P., to Lord Dufferin on “The
Social and Economical Condition of the People.”





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