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Title: Early Western Travels, 1748-1846, Volume XII - Part II (1820) of Faux's Memorable Days in America, 1819-20; - and Welby's Visit to North America, 1819-20.
Author: Welby, Adlard, Faux, William
Language: English
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  Early Western Travels


  Volume XII

  Early Western Travels


  A Series of Annotated Reprints of some of the best
  and rarest contemporary volumes of travel,
  descriptive of the Aborigines and Social
  and Economic Conditions in the Middle
  and Far West, during the Period
  of Early American Settlement

  Edited with Notes, Introductions, Index, etc., by

  Reuben Gold Thwaites, LL.D.

  Editor of "The Jesuit Relations and Allied Documents,"
  "Original Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition,"
  "Hennepin's New Discovery," etc.

  Volume XII

  Part II (1820) of Faux's Memorable Days in America, 1819-20;
  and Welby's Visit to North America, 1819-20.


  Cleveland, Ohio
  The Arthur H. Clark Company



  The Lakeside Press



  MEMORABLE DAYS IN AMERICA: being a Journal of a Tour to
     the United States, etc. (Part II: January 1--July 21,
     1820.) _William Faux_                                          11


     IN ILLINOIS, with a Winter Residence at Philadelphia;
     solely to ascertain the actual prospects of the
     Emigrating Agriculturist, Mechanic, and Commercial
     Speculator. _Adlard Welby_

        Author's Dedication                                        145

        Author's Preface                                           147


          The Voyage                                               151
          Ship Cookery                                             156
          Situation of a Passenger on board ship                   156
          Drive to the Falls of the Passaic River, Jersey State    166
          Philadelphia                                             172
          A Pensilvanian Innkeeper                                 188
          American Waiters                                         196
          Servants                                                 199
          Black Population in Free Pensilvania                     200
          Night                                                    200
          Americans and Scots                                      201
          Virginia                                                 202
          Wheeling                                                 204
          State of Ohio                                            205
          Kentucky. Maysville or Limestone                         214
          An Odd Mistake                                           218
          Lexington, Kentucky                                      221
          Frankfort                                                222
          Louisville                                               226
          Indiana                                                  227
          Vincennes (Indiana)                                      236
          A Visit to the English Settlement in the Illinois        248
          Harmony                                                  260
          A Winter at Philadelphia                                 294
          Horrible Execution!                                      309
          Lectures on Anatomy                                      314


  "Log Tavern, Indiana"                                            142

  Facsimile of title-page to Welby                                 143

  "Little Brandywine, Pennsylvania"                                176

  "Bridge at Columbia, Pennsylvania"                               179

  "Susquehannah River at Columbia"                                 184

  "Place of Worship & Burial Ground, at Ligonier Town,
    Pennsylvania"                                                  185

  "Widow McMurran's Tavern, Scrub Ridge"                           189

  "View on Scrub Ridge"                                            193

  Wooden scoop (text cut)                                          203

  "Ferry at Maysville, on the Ohio"                                209

  "Maysville, on the Ohio, Kentucky"                               215

  "Frankfort, Kentucky"                                            224

  "The Church at Harmonie"                                         264

  "Bridge at Zanesville, Ohio"                                     277

  "View at Fort Cumberland, Maryland"                              281

  "View at Fort Cumberland, Maryland"                              286

  NOVEMBER 27, 1818--JULY 21, 1820

  Reprint of the original edition: London, 1823. Part I is comprised
  in Volume XI of our series



_January 1st, 1820._--I left Princeton at ten o'clock, with Mr. Phillips
and Mr. Wheeler; and here parted with my good and kind friend Ingle.

I met and spoke, ten miles off, with two hog-jobbing judges, Judge
Prince and Judge Daniel,[104] driving home twenty fat hogs, which they
had just bought.

I reached, and rested at Petersburgh,[105] consisting of fifteen houses.
I passed good farms. Our landlord of this infant town, though having an
{333} ostler, was compelled to groom, saddle, unsaddle, and to do all
himself. Having fifty dollars owing to him, from a gentleman of
Evansville, he arrested him, when he went into the bounds; then he sued
one of the bondsmen, who also entered the bounds. The squire is next to
be sued, who, it is expected, will do likewise.

_Sunday, 2nd._--I rode thirty-one miles this day, and rested at
Edmonstone, in a little cold log-hole, out of which I turned an
officer's black cat, which jumped from the roof into our faces, while in
bed; but she soon found her way in again, through a hole in the roof.
The cat liked our fire. We got no coffee nor tea, but cold milk and
pork, and corn cake.

_3rd._--Travelled all day, through the mud-holes formed by springs
running from countless hills, covered with fine timber, to breakfast, at
three o'clock, p. m. I supped and slept at Judge Chambers's, a
comfortable house, and saw again the judge's mother, of eighty, whose
activity and superior horsemanship, I have before mentioned. I smoked a
segar with Mrs. Judge, while she smoked her pipe, (the first pipe I have
seen here.) She, as well as the old lady, is a quaker. The judge was
gone to the metropolitan town of Coridon, being a senator, on duty.[106]
The land which I passed over all this day, seemed poor, but full of wild
turkeys and bears.

_4th._--I reached Miller's to supper, but found no {334} coffee; cold
milk only, as a substitute. The ride hither is interesting, through a
fine rolling country. The wolves howled around us all night.

_5th._--Passed the Silver Hills,[107] from the summit of which is a
fine, extensive prospect of Kentucky, the Ohio, and of Louisville, where
we breakfasted. I called with Mr. Flower's letter to Archer, who was
out. I received the present of a cow-hide whip, from a lady, and
promised to treat the beast kindly, for her sake. Judge Waggoner
recently shook hands at a whiskey-shop, with a man coming before him
that day, to be tried for murder. He drank his health, and wished him
well through.

I rode seven miles with an intelligent old Kentucky planter, having four
children, who cultivate his farm, without negroes. He says, "Kentucky
is morally and physically ruined. We have been brought up to live
without labour: all are demoralized. No man's word or judgment is to be
taken for the guidance and government of another. Deception is a trade,
and all are rogues. The west has the scum of all the earth. Long ago it
was said, when a man left other States, he is gone to hell, or Kentucky.
The people are none the better for a free, good government. The oldest
first settlers are all gone or ruined. Your colt, sir, of one hundred
dollars, is worth only fifteen dollars. At Louisville, as good a horse
can be bought at ten dollars, or fifteen dollars. You are therefore

The Missouri territory boasts the best land in {335} the country, but is
not watered by springs. Wells are, however, dug, abounding in good
water, says our hearty landlord, just returned from viewing that

The bottom land is the finest in the world. Corn, from sixty to eighty
bushels, and wheat, from forty to sixty bushels an acre. The best
prairies are full of fine grass, flowers, and weeds, not coarse, benty,
sticky grass, which denotes the worst of prairie land. Grass, of a short
fine quality, fit for pasture or hay, every where abounds. The country
is full of wild honey, some houses having made seven and eight barrels
this season, taken out of the trees, which are cut down without killing
the bees. These industrious insects do not sting, but are easily hived
and made tame. Our landlord likes the Missouri, but not so well as Old

Two grim, gaunt-looking men burst into our room, at two, this morning;
and by six, the landlord disturbed us by cow-hiding his negro,
threatening to squeeze the life out of him.

_6th._--I rode all day through a country of fine plantations, and
reached Frankfort to supper, with the legislative body, where I again
met my gay fellow-traveller, Mr. Cowen. It was interesting to look down
our table, and contemplate the many bright, intelligent faces around me:
men who might honour any nation. As strangers, we were {336} invited by
the landlord, (the best I have seen) to the first rush for a chance at
the table's head.

_7th._--I travelled this day through a fine country of rich pasture and
tillage, to Lexington City, to Keen's excellent tavern. I drank wine
with Mr. Lidiard, who is removing eastward, having spent 1,100_l._ in
living, and travelling to and fro. Fine beef at three cents per lb. Fat
fowls, one dollar per dozen. Who would not live in old Kentucky's first

_8th._--Being a wet day, I rested all day and this night. Prairie flies
bleed horses nearly to death. Smoke and fire is a refuge to these
distressed animals. The Indian summer smoke reaches to the Isle of

Visited the Athenæum. Viewed some fine horses, at two hundred dollars

_Sunday, 9th._--I quitted Lexington, and one of the best taverns in
America, for Paris, Kentucky, and a good, genteel farm-house, the
General Washington, twenty-three miles from the city, belonging to Mr.
Hit, who, though owning between four hundred and five hundred acres of
the finest land in Kentucky, does not think it beneath him to entertain
travellers and their horses, on the best fare and beds in the country.
He has been offered sixty dollars, and could now have forty dollars an
acre, for his land, which averages thirty bushels of wheat, and sixty
bushels of corn per acre, and, in {337} natural or artificial grass, is
the first in the world. Sheep, (fine stores) one dollar per head; beef,
fine, three cents per lb., and fowls, one dollar per dozen.

_10th._--Rode all day in the rain and mud, and through the worst roads
in the universe, frequently crossing creeks, belly deep of our horses.
Passed the creek at Blue-lick, belly deep, with sulphurous water running
from a sulphur spring, once a salt spring. The water stinks like the
putrid stagnant water of an English horse-pond, full of animal dung.
This is resorted to for health.

Five or six dirkings and stabbings took place, this fall, in Kentucky.

_11th._--Breakfasted at Washington, (Kentucky) where we parted with Mr.
Phillips, and met the Squire, and another gentleman, debating about law.
Rested at Maysville, a good house, having chambers, and good beds, with
curtains. The steam-boats pass this handsome river town, at the rate of
fifteen to twenty miles an hour. To the passenger, the effect is
beautiful, every minute presenting new objects of attraction.

_12th._--Crossed the Ohio in a flat, submitting to Kentuckyan imposition
of seventy-five cents a horse, instead of twenty-five, because we were
supposed to be Yankees. "We will not," said the boat-man, "take you
over, for less than a dollar each. We heard of you, yesterday. The
gentleman in the cap (meaning me) looks as though he {338} could afford
to pay, and besides, he is so slick with his tongue. The Yankees are the
smartest of fellows, except the Kentuckyans." Sauciness and impudence
are characteristic of these boat-men, who wished I would commence a
bridge over the river.

Reached Union town, Ohio,[108] and rested for the night.

_13th._--Breakfasted at Colonel Wood's. A fine breakfast on beef,
pork-steaks, eggs, and coffee, and plenty for our horses, all for fifty
cents each. Slept at Colonel Peril's, an old Virginian revolutionary
soldier, living on 400 acres of fine land, in a good house, on an
eminence, which he has held two years only. He now wishes to sell all at
ten dollars an acre, less than it cost him, because he has a family who
will all want as much land each, in the Missouri, at two dollars. He
never had a negro. He knows us to be English from our dialect. We
passed, this day, through two or three young villages.

_14th._--Breakfasted at Bainbridge,[109] where is good bottom land, at
twenty to thirty dollars an acre, with improvements. The old Virginian
complains of want of labourers. A farmer must do all himself. Received
of our landlady a lump of Ohio wild sugar, of which some families make
from six to ten barrels a-year, sweet and good enough.

Reached Chilicothé, on the Sciota river, to {339} sup and rest at the
tavern of Mr. Madera, a sensible young man. Here I met Mr. Randolph, a
gentleman of Philadelphia, from Missouri and Illinois, who thinks both
sickly, and not to be preferred to the east, or others parts of the
west. I saw three or four good houses, in the best street, abandoned,
and the windows and doors rotting out for want of occupants.

_15th._--I rode all day through a fine interesting country, abounding
with every good thing, and full of springs and streams. Near
Lancaster,[110] I passed a large high ridge of rocks, which nature has
clothed in everlasting green, being beautified with the spruce, waving
like feathers, on their bleak, barren tops. I reached Lancaster to rest;
a handsome county seat, near which land is selling occasionally from
sixteen dollars to twenty dollars. A fine farm of 170 acres, 100 being
cleared, with all improvements, was sold lately by the sheriff, at
sixteen dollars one cent an acre, much less than it cost. Labour is to
be had at fifty cents and board, but as the produce is so low, it is
thought farming, by hired hands, does not pay. Wheat, fifty cents; corn,
33-1/2 cents; potatoes, 33 cents a bushel; beef, four dollars per cwt.;
pork, three dollars; mutton none; sheep being kept only for the wool,
and bought in common at 2_s._ 8_d._ per head.

Met Judge and General ----, who states that four millions of acres of
land will this year {340} be offered to sale, bordering on the lakes.
Why then should people go to the Missouri? It is not healthy near the
lakes, on account of stagnant waters, made by sand bars, at the mouth of
lake rivers. The regular periodical rising and falling of the lakes is
not yet accounted for. There is no sensible diminution, or increase of
the lake-waters. A grand canal is to be completed in five years, when
boats will travel.[111]

_Sunday, 16th._--I left Lancaster at peep of day, travelling through
intense cold and icy roads to Somerset, eighteen miles, in five hours,
to breakfast.[112] Warmed at an old quarter-section man, a Dutch
American, from Pennsylvania. He came here eleven years since, cleared
seventy acres, has eight children, likes his land, but says, produce is
too low to make it worth raising. People comfortably settled in the
east, on good farms, should stay, unless their children can come and
work on the land. He and his young family do all the work. Has a fine
stove below, warming the first, and all other floors, by a pipe passing
through them.

I slept at a good tavern, the keeper of which is a farmer. All are
farmers, and all the best farmers are tavern-keepers. Farms, therefore,
on the road, sell from 50 to 100 per cent more than land lying back,
though it is no better in quality, and for mere farming, worth no more.
But on the road, a farm and frequented tavern is found to be {341} a
very beneficial mode of using land; the produce selling for double and
treble what it will bring at market, and also fetching ready money.
Labour is not to be commanded, says our landlord.

_17th._--Started at peep of day in a snow-storm, which had covered the
ground six inches deep. Breakfasted at beautiful Zanesville, a town most
delightfully situated amongst the hills. Twelve miles from this town,
one Chandler, in boring for salt, hit upon silver; a mine, seven feet
thick, 150 feet below the surface. It is very pure ore, and the
proprietor has given up two acres of the land to persons who have
applied to the legislature to be incorporated. He is to receive
one-fifth of the net profits.

_18th._--I rode all day through a fine hilly country, full of springs
and fountains. The land is more adapted for good pasture than for
cultivation. Our landlord, Mr. Gill, states that wheat at fifty cents is
too low; but, even at that price, there is no market, nor at any other.
In some former years, Orleans was a market, but now it gets supplied
from countries more conveniently situated than Ohio, from which it costs
one dollar, or one dollar and a quarter per barrel, to send it. Boats
carrying from 100 to 500 barrels, sell for only 16 dollars.

From a conversation, with an intelligent High Sheriff of this county, I
learn that no common debtor has ever lain in prison longer than five
{342} days. None need be longer in giving security for the surrender of
all property.

_19th._--Reached Wheeling late at night, passing through a romantic,
broken, mountainous country, with many fine springs and creeks. Thus I
left Ohio, which, thirty years ago, was a frontier state, full of
Indians, without a white man's house, between Wheeling, Kaskasky, and
St. Louis.

_20th._--Reached Washington, Pennsylvania, to sleep, and found our
tavern full of thirsty classics, from the seminary in this town.

_21st._--Reached Pittsburgh, through a beautiful country of hills, fit
only for pasture. I viewed the fine covered bridges over the two rivers
Monongahela and Allegany, which cost 10,000 dollars each. The hills
around the city shut it in, and make the descent into it frightfully
precipitous. It is most eligibly situated amidst rocks, or rather hills,
of coal, stone, and iron, the coals lying up to the surface, ready for
use. One of these hills, or coal banks, has been long on fire, and
resembles a volcano. Bountiful nature has done every thing for this
rising Birmingham of America.

We slept at Wheeling, at the good hotel of Major Spriggs, one of General
Washington's revolutionary officers, now near 80, a chronicle of years

_22nd._--Bought a fine buffalo robe for five dollars. {343} The
buffaloes, when Kentucky was first settled, were shot, by the settlers,
merely for their tongues; the carcase and skin being thought worth
nothing, were left where the animal fell.

Left Pittsburgh for Greensburgh, travelling through a fine, cultivated,
thickly settled country, full of neat, flourishing, and good farms, the
occupants of which are said to be rich. Land, _on_ the road, is worth
from fifteen to thirty dollars; _from_ it, five to fifteen dollars per
acre. The hills and mountains seem full of coal-mines and
stone-quarries, or rather banks of coal and stone ever open gratuitously
to all. The people about here are economical and intelligent; qualities
characteristic of Pennsylvania.

_Sunday, 23d._--We agreed to rest here until the morrow; finding one of
our best horses sick; and went to Pittsburgh church.

_24th._--My fellow traveller finding his horse getting worse, gave him
away for our tavern bill of two days, thus paying 175 dollars for two
days board. While this fine animal remained ours, no doctor could be
found, but as soon as he became our landlord's, one was discovered, who
engaged to cure him in a week. Mr. Wheeler took my horse, and left me to
come on in the stage, to meet again at Chambersburgh.

The country round about here is fine, but there is no market, except at
Baltimore, at five dollars a barrel for flour. The carriage costs two
and half {344} dollars. I saw two young ladies, Dutch farmers'
daughters, smoking segars in our tavern, very freely, and made one of
their party. Paid twelve dollars for fare to Chambersburgh.[114]

Invited to a sleying party of ten gentlemen, one of whom was the
venerable speaker (Brady) of the senate of this state. They were nearly
all drunk with apple-toddy, a large bowl of which was handed to every
drinker. One gentleman returned with a cracked skull.

_25th._--Left this town, at three o'clock in the morning, in the stage,
and met again at Bedford, and parted, perhaps, for ever, with my
agreeable fellow-traveller, Mr. Wheeler, who passed on to New York.
Passed the Laurel-hill, a huge mountain, covered with everlasting green,
and a refuge for bears, one of which was recently killed with a pig of
150lbs. weight in his mouth.

_26th._--Again mounted my horse, passing the lonely Allegany mountains,
all day, in a blinding snow-storm, rendering the air as dense as a
November fog in London. Previous to its coming on, I found my naked nose
in danger. The noses of others were wrapped up in flannel bags, or cots,
and masks for the eyes, which are liable to freeze into balls of ice.

Passed several flourishing villages. The people here seem more
economical and simple, than in other states. Rested at M'Connell's town,
100 miles from Washington city.

{345} _27th._--Crossed the last of the huge Allegany mountains, called
the North Mount, nine miles over, and very high. My horse was belly deep
in snow.

Breakfasted at Mercersburgh, at the foot of the above mountain, and at
the commencement of that fine and richest valley in the eastern states,
in which Hagar's town stands, and which extends through Pennsylvania,
Maryland, and Virginia, from 100 to 200 miles long, and from 30 to 40
broad. Land here, three years ago, sold at 100 to 120 dollars, although
now at a forced sale, 160 acres sold for only 1,600 dollars, with
improvements, in Pennsylvania. And if, says my informant, the state
makes no law to prevent it, much must come into the market, without
money to buy, except at a ruinous depreciation.

Passed Hagar's town, to Boonsburgh, to rest all night, after 37 miles

The old Pennsylvanian farmer, in answer to "How do you do without
negroes?" said, "Better than with them. I occupy of my father 80 acres
in this valley, and hire all my hands, and sell five loads of flour,
while some of the Marylanders and Virginians cannot raise enough to
maintain their negroes, who do but little work."

_28th._--Breakfasted on the road; passed Middletown, with two fine
spires, a good town; and also Frederick town, a noble inland town, and
next to Lancaster, in Pennsylvania, and the first {346} in the United
States. It has three beautiful spires. It is much like a second rate
English town, but not so cleanly; something is dirty, or in ruins. It
stands at the foot of the Blue Ridge, in the finest, largest vale in the
world, running from the eastern sea to the Gulf of Mexico.

Rested at Windmiller's, a stage-house, thirty miles from Washington,
distinguished only by infamous, ungenerous, extortion from travellers.
Here I paid 75 cents for tea; 25 cents for a pint of beer, 9_s._
sterling for a bushel of oats and corn, and 50 cents for hay for the
night. The horse cost 6_s._ 9_d._ in one night.

_29th._--Rode from seven till eleven o'clock, sixteen miles to
breakfast, at Montgomery-court-house, all drenched in rain. I reached
Washington city, at six this evening. Here, for the first time, I met
friend Joseph Lancaster, full of visionary schemes, which are unlikely
to produce him bread.

_Sunday, 30th._--Went to Congress-hall, and heard grave senators
wrangling about slavery. Governor Barbour spoke with eloquence.

Friend Lancaster's daily and familiar calls on the great, and on his
Excellency, the President, about schooling the Indians, and his praises
of the members, are likely to wear out all his former fame, already much
in ruins. I was this day introduced by him to ---- Parr, Esq., an
English gentleman of fortune, from Boston, Lincolnshire, {347} who has
just returned from a pedestrian pilgrimage to Birkbeck and the western

_February 1st._--I again went to Congress, where I heard Mr. Randolph's
good speech on the Missouri question. This sensible orator continually
refers to English authors and orators, insomuch that all seemed English.
These American statesmen cannot open their mouths without acknowledging
their British origin and obligations.--I shall here insert some
observations on the constitution and laws of this country, and on
several of the most distinguished members of Congress, for which I am
indebted to the pen of G. Waterstone, Esq., Congressional Librarian at

    _Observations on the Constitution and Laws of the United States,
    with Sketches of some of the most prominent public Characters._

Like the Minerva of the ancients, the American people have sprung, at
once, into full and vigorous maturity, without the imbecility of
infancy, or the tedious process of gradual progression. They possess
none of the thoughtless liberality and inconsiderate confidence of
youth; but are, already, distinguished by the cold and cautious policy
of declining life, rendered suspicious by a long acquaintance with the
deceptions and the vices of the world.

Practitioners of jurisprudence have become {348} almost innumerable, and
the great end of all laws, the security and protection of the citizen,
is in some degree defeated. It is to the multiplicity and ambiguity of
the laws of his age, that Tacitus has ascribed most of the miseries
which were then experienced; and this evil will always be felt where
they are ambiguous and too numerous. In vain do the Americans urge that
their laws have been founded on those of England, the wisdom and
excellence of which have been so highly and extravagantly eulogized. The
difference, as Mably correctly observes, between the situation of this
country and that is prodigious;[116] the government of one having been
formed in an age of refinement and civilization, and that of the other,
amidst the darkness and barbarism of feudal ignorance. In most of the
states the civil and criminal code is defective; and the latter, like
that of Draco, is often written in blood. Why should not each state form
a code of laws for itself, and cast off this slavish dependence on Great
Britain, whom they pretend so much to dislike?

With a view of explaining more perfectly the nature of this
constitution, I will briefly exhibit the points in which the British and
American governments differ {349}.

          _In England._                              _In America._

  I. The king possesses imperial         There is no king; the president
  dignity.                               acts as the chief magistrate of
                                         the nation only.

  II. This imperial dignity is           The presidency lasts only four
  hereditary and perpetual.              years.

  III. The king has the sole             The president can do neither,
  power of making war and peace,         without the consent of
  and of forming treaties with foreign   Congress.

  IV. The king alone can levy            The president has no such
  troops, build fortresses, and equip    power: this is vested in
  fleets.                                Congress.

  V. He is the source of all judicial    The executive has only the
  power, and the head of all             appointment of judges, with
  the tribunals of the nation.           the consent of the senate,
                                         and is not connected with
                                         the judiciary.

  VI. He is the fountain of all          The president has no such
  honour, office, and privilege; can     power. There are no titles, and
  create peers, and distribute titles    he can only appoint to office,
  and dignities.                         by and with the consent of the

  VII. He is at the head of the          There is no established church.
  national church, and has supreme
  control over it.

  VIII. He is the superintendent         The president has no such
  of commerce; regulates the             power.
  weights and measures, and can
  alone coin money and give currency
  to foreign coin.

  IX. He is the universal proprietor     The president has nothing to
  of the kingdom.                        do with the property of the
                                         United States {350}.

  X. The king's person is sacred         The president is nothing more
  and inviolate; he is accountable       than an individual, is amenable
  to no human power, and can do          like all civil officers, and
  no wrong.                              considered as capable of doing
                                         wrong as any other citizen.

  XI. The British legislature            There are no nobles, and both
  contains a house of lords, 300         houses of Congress are elected.
  nobles, whose seats, honours,
  and privileges are hereditary.

It may, perhaps, be unnecessary to adduce more points of difference to
illustrate the nature of the American government. These are amply
sufficient to demonstrate the entire democratic tendency of the
constitution of the United States, and the error under which those
persons labour, who believe that but few differences, and those
immaterial and unimportant, exist between these two governments. They
have, indeed, in common the Habeas Corpus and the Trial by Jury, the
great bulwarks of civil liberty, but in almost every other particular
they disagree.

The second branch of this government is the legislature. This consists
of a Senate and House of Representatives; the members of the latter are
chosen every two years by the people; and those of the former, every six
years by the legislatures of the different states. It is in this branch
that the American government differs from the republics of ancient and
modern times; it is this which {351} makes it not a pure, but a
representative democracy; and it is this which gives it such a decided
superiority over all the governments in the world. Experience has
demonstrated the impracticability of assembling a numerous collection of
people to frame laws, and their incompetency, when assembled, for
judicious deliberation and prompt and unbiassed decision. The passions
of illiterate and unthinking men are easily roused into action and
inflamed to madness. Artful and designing demagogues are too apt to take
advantage of those imbecilities of our nature, and to convert them to
the basest purposes.

The qualifications of representatives are very simple. It is only
required that they should be citizens of the United States, and have
attained the age of twenty-five. The moment their period of service
expires, they are again, unless re-elected, reduced to the rank and
condition of citizens. If they should have acted in opposition to the
wishes and interests of their constituents, while performing the
functions of legislation, the people possess the remedy and can exercise
it without endangering the peace and harmony of society; the offending
member is dropped, and his place supplied by another, more worthy of
confidence. This consciousness of responsibility, on the part of the
representatives, operates as a perpetual guarantee to the people, and
protects and secures them in the enjoyment of their political and civil

{352} It must be admitted that the Americans have attained the _Ultima
Thulé_ in representative legislation, and that they enjoy this
inestimable blessing to a much greater extent than the people of Great
Britain. Of the three distinct and independent branches of that
government, one only owes its existence to the free suffrages of the
people, and this, from the inequality of representation, the long
intervals between the periods of election, and the liability of members,
from this circumstance, to be corrupted, is not so important and useful
a branch as might otherwise be expected. Imperfect, however, as it is,
the people, without it, would indeed be slaves, and the government
nothing more than a pure monarchy.

The American walks abroad in the majesty of freedom; if he be innocent,
he shrinks not from the gaze of upstart and insignificant wealth, nor
sinks beneath the oppression of his fellow-man. Conscious of his rights
and of the security he enjoys, by the liberal institutions of his
country, independence beams in his eye, and humanity glows in his heart.
Has he done wrong? He knows the limits of his punishment, and the
character of his judges. Is he innocent? He feels that no power on earth
can crush him. What a condition is this, compared with that of the
subjects of almost all the European nations!

As long as it is preserved, the security of the citizen and the union of
the states, will be guaranteed, {353} and the country thus governed,
will become the home of the free, the retreat of misery, and the asylum
of persecuted humanity. As a written compact, it is a phenomenon in
politics, an unprecedented and perfect example of representative
democracy, to which the attention of mankind is now enthusiastically
directed. Most happily and exquisitely organized, the American
constitution is, in truth, at once "a monument of genius, and an edifice
of strength and majesty." The union of its parts forms its solidity, and
the harmony of its proportions constitutes its beauty. May it always be
preserved inviolate by the gallant and highminded people of America, and
may they never forget that its destruction will be the inevitable
death-blow of liberty, and the probable passport to universal despotism!

The speaker of the House of Representatives is Mr. Clay, a delegate from
Kentucky, and who, not long ago, acted a conspicuous part, as one of the
American commissioners at Ghent.[117] He is a tall, thin, and not very
muscular man; his gait is stately, but swinging; and his countenance,
while it indicates genius, denotes dissipation. As an orator, Mr. Clay
stands high in the estimation of his countrymen, but he does not possess
much gracefulness or elegance of manner; his eloquence is impetuous and
vehement; it rolls like a torrent, but like a torrent which is sometimes
irregular, and occasionally obstructed. Though there is a {354} want of
rapidity and fluency in his elocution, yet he has a great deal of fire
and vigour in his expression. When he speaks he is full of animation and
earnestness; his face brightens, his eye beams with additional lustre,
and his whole figure indicates that he is entirely occupied with the
subject on which his eloquence is employed. In action, on which
Demosthenes laid such peculiar emphasis, and which was so highly
esteemed among the ancients, Mr. Clay is neither very graceful nor very
imposing. He does not, in the language of Shakespear, "so suit the word
to the action, and the action to the word, as not to o'erstep the
modesty of nature." In his gesticulation and attitudes, there is
sometimes an uniformity and awkwardness that lessen his merit as an
orator, and in some measure destroy the impression and effect his
eloquence would otherwise produce. Mr. Clay does not seem to have
studied rhetoric as a science, or to have paid much attention to those
artificial divisions and rhetorical graces and ornaments on which the
orators of antiquity so strongly insist. Indeed, oratory as an art is
but little studied in this country. Public speakers here trust almost
entirely to the efficacy of their own native powers for success in the
different fields of eloquence, and search not for the extrinsic
embellishments and facilities of art. It is but rarely they unite the
Attic and Rhodian manner, and still more rarely do they devote their
attention to the acquisition {355} of those accomplishments which were,
in the refined ages of Greece and Rome, considered so essential to the
completion of an orator. Mr. Clay, however, is an eloquent speaker; and
notwithstanding the defects I have mentioned, very seldom fails to
please and convince. His mind is so organized that he overcomes the
difficulties of abstruse and complicated subjects, apparently without
the toil of investigation or the labour of profound research. It is
rich, and active, and rapid, grasping at one glance, connections the
most distant, and consequences the most remote, and breaking down the
trammels of error and the cobwebs of sophistry. When he rises to speak
he always commands attention, and almost always satisfies the mind on
which his eloquence is intended to operate. The warmth and fervor of his
feelings, and the natural impetuosity of his character, which seem to be
common to the Kentuckians, often indeed lead him to the adoption of
opinions, which are not, at all times, consistent with the dictates of
sound policy. Though ambitious and persevering, his intentions are good
and his heart is pure; he is propelled by a love of country, but yet is
solicitous of distinction; he wishes to attain the pinnacle of greatness
without infringing the liberties, or marring the prosperity of that land
of which it seems to be his glory to be a native.

{356} The prominent traits of Mr. Clay's mind are quickness,
penetration, and acuteness; a fertile invention, discriminating
judgment, and good memory. His attention does not seem to have been much
devoted to literary or scientific pursuits, unconnected with his
profession; but fertile in resources, and abounding in expedients, he is
seldom at a loss, and if he is not at all times able to amplify and
embellish, he but rarely fails to do justice to the subject which has
called forth his eloquence. On the most complicated questions, his
observations made immediately and on the spur of the occasion, are
generally such as would be suggested by long and deep reflection. In
short, Mr. Clay has been gifted by nature with great intellectual
superiority, which will always give him a decided influence in whatever
sphere it may be his destiny to revolve.

Mr. Clay's manners are plain and easy. He has nothing in him of that
reserve which checks confidence, and which some politicians assume; his
views of mankind are enlarged and liberal; and his conduct as a
politician and a statesman has been marked with the same enlarged and
liberal policy. As Speaker of the House of Representatives, he presides
generally with great dignity, and decides on questions of order,
sometimes, indeed, with too much precipitation, but almost always
correctly. It is but seldom his decisions are disputed, {357} and when
they are, they are not often reversed.[118]

"A Statesman," says Mirabeau, "presents to the mind the idea of a vast
genius improved by experience, capable of embracing the mass of social
interests, and of perceiving how to maintain true harmony among the
individuals of which society is composed, and an extent of information
which may give substance and union to the different operations of

Mr. Pinkney[119] is between fifty and sixty years of age; his form is
sufficiently elevated and compact to be graceful, and his countenance,
though marked by the lines of dissipation, and rather too heavy, is not
unprepossessing or repulsive. His eye is rapid in its motion, and beams
with the animation of genius; but his lips are too thick, and his cheeks
too fleshy and loose for beauty; there is too a degree of foppery, and
sometimes of splendor, manifested in the decoration of his person, which
is not perfectly reconcileable to our {358} ideas of mental superiority,
and an appearance of voluptuousness about him which cannot surely be a
source of pride or of gratification to one whose mind is so capacious
and elegant. It is not improbable, however, that this character is
assumed merely for the purpose of exciting a higher admiration of his
powers, by inducing a belief that, without the labour of study or the
toil of investigation, he can attain the object of his wishes and become
eminent, without deigning to resort to that painful drudgery by which
meaner minds and inferior intellects are enabled to arrive at excellence
and distinction. At the first glance, you would imagine Mr. Pinkney was
one of those butterflies of fashion, _a dandy_, known by their
extravagant eccentricities of dress, and peculiarities of manners; and
no one could believe, from his external appearance, that he was, in the
least degree, intellectually superior to his fellow men. But Mr. Pinkney
is indeed a wonderful man, and one of those beings whom the lover of
human nature feels a delight in contemplating. His mind is of the very
first order; quick, expanded, fervid, and powerful. The hearer is at a
loss which most to admire, the vigour of his judgment, the fertility of
his invention, the strength of his memory, or the power of his
imagination. Each of these faculties he possesses in an equal degree of
perfection, and each is displayed in its full maturity, when the {359}
magnitude of the subject on which he descants renders its operation
necessary. This singular union of the rare and precious gifts of
nature, has received all the strength which education could afford, and
all the polish and splendour which art could bestow. Under the cloak of
dissipation and voluptuousness his application has been indefatigable,
and his studies unintermitted: the oil of the midnight lamp has been
exhausted, and the labyrinths of knowledge have been explored.

Mr. Pinkney is never unprepared, and never off his guard. He encounters
his subject with a mind rich in all the gifts of nature, and fraught
with all the resources of art and study. He enters the list with his
antagonist, armed, like the ancient cavalier, cap-a-pee; and is alike
prepared to wield the lance, or to handle the sword, as occasion may
require. In cases which embrace all the complications and intricacies of
law, where reason seems to be lost in the chaos of technical perplexity,
and obscurity and darkness assume the dignified character of science, he
displays an extent of research, a range of investigation, a lucidness of
reasoning, and a fervor and brilliancy of thought, that excite our
wonder, and elicit our admiration. On the driest, most abstract, and
uninteresting questions of law, when no mind can anticipate such an
occurrence, he occasionally blazes forth in all the enchanting
exuberance of a chastened, but rich {360} and vivid imagination, and
paints in a manner as classical as it is splendid, and as polished as it
is brilliant. In the higher grades of eloquence, where the passions and
feelings of our nature are roused to action, or lulled to tranquillity,
Mr. Pinkney is still the great magician, whose power is resistless, and
whose touch is fascination. His eloquence becomes sublime and
impassioned, majestic and overwhelming. In calmer moments, when these
passions are hushed, and more tempered feelings have assumed the place
of agitation and disorder, he weaves around you the fairy circles of
fancy, and calls up the golden palaces and magnificent scenes of
enchantment. You listen with rapture as he rolls along: his defects
vanish, and you are not conscious of any thing but what he pleases to
infuse. From his tongue, like that of Nestor, "language more sweet than
honey flows;" and the attention is constantly rivetted by the successive
operation of the different faculties of the mind. There are no awkward
pauses, no hesitation for want of words or of arguments: he moves
forward with a pace sometimes majestic, sometimes graceful, but always
captivating and elegant. His order is lucid, his reasoning logical, his
diction select, magnificent, and appropriate, and his style, flowing,
oratorical, and beautiful. The most laboured and finished composition
could not be better than that which he seems to utter {361}
spontaneously and without effort. His judgment, invention, memory, and
imagination, all conspire to furnish him at once with whatever he may
require to enforce, embellish, or illustrate his subject. On the dullest
topic he is never dry: and no one leaves him without feeling an
admiration of his powers, that borders on enthusiasm. His satire is
keen, but delicate, and his wit is scintillating and brilliant. His
treasure is exhaustless, possessing the most extensive and varied
information. He never feels at a loss; and he ornaments and illustrates
every subject he touches. _Nihil quod tetigit, non ornavit._ He is never
the same; he uses no common place artifice to excite a momentary thrill
of admiration. He is not obliged to patch up and embellish a few
ordinary thoughts, or set off a few meagre and uninteresting facts. His
resources seem to be as unlimited as those of nature; and fresh powers,
and new beauties are exhibited, whenever his eloquence is employed. A
singular copiousness and felicity of thought and expression, united to a
magnificence of amplification, and a purity and chastity of ornament,
give to his eloquence a sort of enchantment which it is difficult to

Mr. Pinkney's mind is in a high degree poetical; it sometimes wantons in
the luxuriance of its own creations; but these creations never violate
the purity of classical taste and elegance. He {362} loves to paint when
there is no occasion to reason; and addresses the imagination and
passions, when the judgment has been satisfied and enlightened. I speak
of Mr. Pinkney at present as a forensic orator. His career was too short
to afford an opportunity of judging of his parliamentary eloquence; and,
perhaps, like Curran, he might have failed in a field in which it was
anticipated he would excel, or, at least, retain his usual pre-eminence.
Mr. Pinkney, I think, bears a stronger resemblance to Burke than to
Pitt; but, in some particulars, he unites the excellences of both. He
has the fancy and erudition of the former, and the point, rapidity, and
elocution of the latter. Compared with his countrymen, he wants the
vigour and striking majesty of Clay, the originality and ingenuity of
Calhoun; but, as a rhetorician, he surpasses both. In his action, Mr.
Pinkney has, unfortunately, acquired a manner, borrowed, no doubt, from
some illustrious model, which is eminently uncouth and inelegant. It
consists in raising one leg on a bench or chair before him, and in
thrusting his right arm in a horizontal line from his side to its full
length in front. This action is uniform, and never varies or changes in
the most tranquil flow of sentiment, or the grandest burst of
impassioned eloquence. His voice, though not naturally good, has been
disciplined to modulation by art; and, if it is not always musical, it
is {363} never very harsh or offensive. Such is Mr. Pinkney as an
orator; as a diplomatist but little can be said that will add to his
reputation. In his official notes there is too much flippancy, and too
great diffuseness, for beauty or elegance of composition. It is but
seldom that the orator possesses the requisites of the writer; and the
fame which is acquired by the tongue sometimes evaporates through the
pen. As a writer he is inferior to the present Attorney-General,[120]
who unites the powers of both in a high degree, and thus in his own
person illustrates the position which he has laid down, as to the
universality of genius.

Mr. R. King is a senator from the State of New York, and was formerly
the resident minister at the court of St. James's.[121] He is now about
sixty years of age, above the middle size, and somewhat inclined to
corpulency. His countenance, when serious and thoughtful, possesses a
great deal of austerity and rigour; but at other moments it is marked
with placidity and benevolence. Among his friends he is facetious and
easy; but when with strangers, reserved and distant; apparently
indisposed to conversation, and inclined to taciturnity; but when called
out, his colloquial powers are of no ordinary character, and his
conversation becomes peculiarly instructive, fascinating, and humourous.
Mr. King has read and reflected much; and though long in public life,
his attention {364} has not been exclusively devoted to the political
sciences; for his information on other subjects is equally matured and
extensive. His resources are numerous and multiplied, and can easily be
called into operation. In his parliamentary addresses he always displays
a deep and intimate knowledge of the subject under discussion, and never
fails to edify and instruct if he ceases to delight. He has read history
to become a statesman, and not for the mere gratification it affords. He
applies the experience of ages, which the historical muse exhibits, to
the general purposes of government, and thus reduces to practice the
mass of knowledge with which his mind is fraught and embellished. As a
legislator he is, perhaps, inferior to no man in this country. The
faculty of close and accurate observation by which he is distinguished
has enabled him to remark and treasure up every fact of political
importance, that has occurred since the organization of the American
government; and the citizen, as well as the stranger, is often surprised
at the minuteness of his historical details, and the facility with which
they are applied. With the various subjects immediately connected with
politics, he has made himself well acquainted; and such is the strength
of his memory, and the extent of his information, that the accuracy of
his statements is never disputed. Mr. King, however, is somewhat of an
{365} enthusiast, and his feelings sometimes propel him to do that which
his judgment cannot sanction. When parties existed in this country, he
belonged to, and was considered to be the leader of what was denominated
the federal phalanx; and he has often, perhaps, been induced, from the
influence of party feeling, and the violence of party animosity, to
countenance measures that must have wounded his moral sensibilities; and
that now, when reason is suffered to dictate, cannot but be deeply
regretted. From a rapid survey of his political and parliamentary
career, it would appear that the fury of party has betrayed him into the
expression of sentiments, and the support of measures, that were, in
their character, revolting to his feelings; but whatever he may have
been charged with, his intentions, at least, were pure, and his
exertions, as he conceived, calculated for the public good. He was
indeed _cried down_ by a class of emigrants from the mother country, who
have far too great a sway in the political transactions of the United
States; and though, unquestionably, an ornament to the nation which has
given him birth, his countrymen, averse to him from party
considerations, joined in the cry, and he became a victim, perhaps, to
the duty he owed, and the love he bore to his country. Prejudice,
however, does not always continue, and the American people, with that
good sense which forms so prominent a feature of their character, are
beginning justly to appreciate those {366} virtues and talents, they
once so much decried. Mr. King has a sound and discriminating mind, a
memory uncommonly tenacious, and a judgment, vigorous, prompt, and
decisive. He either wants imagination, or is unwilling to employ a
faculty that he conceives only calculated to flatter and delight. His
object is more to convince and persuade, by the force of reason, than to
amuse the mind by the fantastic embroidery and gaudy festoonings of
fancy. His style of eloquence is plain, but bold and manly; replete with
argument, and full of intelligence; neither impetuous nor vehement, but
flowing and persuasive. His mind, like that of Fox, is historical; it
embraces consequences the most distant with rapidity and ease. Facts
form the basis of his reasoning. Without these his analysis is
defective, and his combinations and deductions are often incorrect. His
logic is not artificial, but natural: he abandons its formal divisions,
non-essentials, moods, and figures, to weaker minds, and adheres to the
substantials of natural reason. Of Mr. King's moral character I can say
nothing from my own personal knowledge, as my acquaintance with him has
not been long and intimate enough to enable me to judge correctly. I
have not, however, heard any thing alleged against it calculated to
lessen his reputation as an honourable statesman, or a virtuous member
of society. He is wealthy, and has, no doubt, something of pride and
hauteur in his manner, {367} offensive to the spirit of republicanism,
and inconsistent with the nature of equality; but, as a father, husband,
and friend, I have not yet heard him charged with any dereliction of
duty, or any violation of those principles which tend to harmonize
society, and to unite man to man by the bonds of affection and virtue. I
must now beg permission to despatch the portrait of Mr. King, in order
to submit to your inspection an imperfect likeness of another member of
the same body. This is not the country to look for the blazonry and
trappings of ancestry; merit alone claims and receives distinction; and
none but the fool or the simpleton, ever pretends to boast of his
ancestry and noble blood, or to offer it as a claim to respect or
preferment. The people alone form the tribunal to which every aspirant
for fame or honour must submit; and they are too enlightened and too
independent to favour insignificance, though surrounded by the splendour
of wealth, or to countenance stupidity, though descended from those who
were once illustrious and great.

James Barbour is a senator from Virginia, his native state.[122] He was
in his youth a deputy sheriff of the county in which he was born, and
received an education which was merely intended to fit him for an
ordinary station in life. He felt, however, superior to his condition,
and stimulated by that love of fame which often characterizes genius, he
devoted himself to study, and became {368} a practitioner of the law. He
rose rapidly in his profession, and soon acquired both wealth and
reputation. Like most of the barristers of this country, he conceived
that to be a lawyer was necessarily to be a politician, and he rushed
forward into public life to extend his fame and enlarge his sphere of
action. From a member of the house of delegates he was elevated to the
gubernatorial chair of Virginia, and received the highest honour his
native state could confer. Gratified thus far in the wishes he had
formed, he became desirous to enter on a more enlarged theatre, where
his talents would have a greater field of action, and his eloquence a
wider range and better effect, and he accepted the situation of senator
of the United States.

Mr. Barbour commenced his career with a speech against the establishment
of the national bank, which was then in agitation. He had come fraught
with prejudices against this mammoth institution, and in the fervor of
the moment gave vent to those prejudices in a manner certainly very
eloquent, but not very judicious. When he had soberly weighed the good
and evil with which it might be attended, the peculiar condition of his
country, and the necessity of adopting some scheme by which the
difficulties of government should be obviated, and its financial
embarrassment relieved, he very candidly confessed the error into which
his feelings had betrayed him, and {369} in a speech, conceived and
uttered in the very spirit of true eloquence, supported the measure.

Mr. Barbour is, in person, muscular and vigorous, and rather inclined to
corpulency. His eyebrows are thick and bushy, which gives to his
countenance a little too much the appearance of ferocity, but this is
counterbalanced by a peculiar expression in his visage, that conveys a
sentiment of mildness and humanity. He seems to be above forty years of
age, and is about five feet ten inches high. Of his mind, the prominent
characters are brilliancy and fervor. He has more imagination than
judgment, and more splendor than solidity. His memory is not very
retentive, because it has never been much employed, except to treasure
up poetical images, and to preserve the spangles and tinsel of oratory.
As an orator, Mr. Barbour has some great defects. His style is too
artificial and verbose, and he seems always more solicitous to shine and
dazzle than convince or persuade. He labours after splendid images, and
strives to fill the ear more with sound than sense. His sentences are
sometimes involved and complicated, replete with _sesquipedalia verba_,
and too much charged with "guns, trumpets, blunderbuss, and thunder." He
has unfortunately laid down to himself a model, which, with reverence be
it spoken, is not the best that could have been adopted. Curran has gone
a great way to corrupt the taste of the present age. His powers {370}
were certainly very extraordinary, but his taste was bad, and by
yielding too much to the impulse of a highly poetical imagination, he
filled the mind of his hearer with fine paintings indeed, and left it
at last glowing, but vacant, delighted, but unconvinced. Too many of the
youths of this country seem to be smitten with the model which he has
thus given, and which is certainly calculated to fire an ardent mind,
and lead it astray from the principles of correct taste and genuine
oratory. Mr. Barbour, however, is frequently not only very fluent but
very persuasive, and he often employs his full flowing oratorical style
to great advantage in setting off his argument, and in decorating and
enforcing his reasoning. From the want of opportunities, his reading,
like that of most of the politicians of this country, has been confined,
and his range of thought, from the absence of that knowledge which books
afford, is necessarily limited. He has, indeed, derived advantages from
an association with men of literary and scientific attainments, but he
has still much to acquire to render him eminent as a statesman. The
contributions, which, from this circumstance, he is compelled to levy on
his own unaided native resources, have, however, tended to sharpen his
intellectual powers, and to give them vivacity and quickness. Mr.
Barbour seldom thinks deeply, but he is always rapid; and though his
observations are sometimes trite and ordinary, there is almost always
something {371} new and gratifying in the manner in which they are
uttered. His mind does not appear organized for long continued
investigation, and nature has formed him more for a poet than a
mathematician. He is rather too anxious to be thought a great orator,
and this over-ruling propensity is manifested even in common
conversation; when, instead of ease, simplicity, and conciseness, he
discovers the formal elocution of the public speaker, on the most
unimportant and incidental subjects. In private circles, Mr. Barbour is
always very pleasant, and exhibits a politeness, which, flowing from
the heart rather than the head, delights all who have the pleasure of
his acquaintance, and renders him an acceptable guest, and an agreeable

There is a native openness and benevolence in his character, which
excite the love of all who know him, and which powerfully attract the
stranger as well as the friend. He seems superior to the grovelling
intrigues of party, and always expresses his feelings, in the bold and
lofty language of conscious independence and freedom. There is a marked
difference between this gentleman and his brother, Mr. Philip P.
Barbour,[123] a member of the House of Representatives, in the
respective faculties of their mind; the latter is more logical, and also
more laborious and indefatigable. He seems to have a peculiar tact for
those constitutional and legal questions which {372} are involved and
obscure, and possesses that clearness and vigor of mind necessary to
unfold what is complicated, and illuminate what is dark. He casts on
such subjects so powerful a light, that we wonder we should ever have
doubted, and behold at once the truth, stripped of all its obscurity.
The former seldom attempts an analysis of such questions. He reasons,
but his reasoning is not so much that of a mathematician, as of an
advocate who labours to surprise by his novelty, and to fascinate by the
ingenuity of his deductions, and the ease and beauty of his elocution.
He has more genius than his brother, but less judgment; more refinement
and elegance, but less vigor and energy. It appears to me that there is
a vast deal of what may be denominated _law mind_ in this country,
which will ultimately reach a point of excellence that must astonish the
world. The fondness for the profession of the law, at present, is
wonderful; almost every man, whatever be his means of support, or grade
in society, if he have children, endeavours to make one of them, at
least, a disciple of Coke, or a "fomentor of village vexation," and you
cannot enter a court-house, without being astonished at the number of
young men, who are either studying or practising the law. This, however,
is not a matter of surprise, when we consider the facility with which
this profession leads to preferment and distinction, and the ease with
which it seems to be acquired. Amidst such {373} a mass of _law mind_,
therefore, as exists here, excellence must hereafter be attained, if it
has not now reached its climax; and the Cokes, the Mansfields, and
Ellenboroughs of England are, or will soon be, equalled in this country.
The future destinies of this republic cannot be fully anticipated; the
march of mind is progressive and resistless, and intellectual
pre-eminence must be attained where so many inducements are offered to
effect, and so few impediments exist to prevent it. Mind is often
regulated by the circumstance in which it is placed, and fashioned by
the objects by which it is surrounded. This country is, therefore,
peculiarly favorable for the expansion and development of the
intellectual powers. Physical, as well as moral causes, operate to this
end. The eye of an American is perpetually presented with an outline of
wonderful magnificence and grandeur; every work of nature is here on a
vast and expansive scale; the mountains, and lakes, and rivers, and
forests, appear in a wild sublimity of grandeur, which renders the
mountains, lakes, and rivers of Europe, mere pigmies in comparison. The
political and religious freedom, too, which is here experienced,
removes all shackles, and gives an elasticity, a loftiness, and an
impetus to the mind that cannot but propel it to greatness. Thus
operated upon by moral and physical causes, what must be the ultimate
destiny of the people of this country, and the range and expansion of
intellect which they {374} will possess? Devoted as they are for the
most part to studies and professions, which have a tendency to enlarge
and liberalize the mind, and influenced by the causes I have mentioned,
it would be worse than stupidity to suppose they could long remain an
inferior people, or possibly avoid reaching that point of elevation of
which mankind are capable. The _law mind_ of this country has now
attained a high degree of splendor, and is in rapid progress to still
greater excellence. There are many men, in this country, though so much
calumniated by British writers, who would shed a lustre on the bench of
that nation, and not suffer by a comparison with some of the brightest
luminaries of English jurisprudence.

Before I quit this body of American worthies, I must introduce to your
acquaintance, as succinctly as possible, another member of the senate,
who, though not so conspicuous as the two former, in the walks of public
life, is not inferior to any in this country, in all that constitutes
and dignifies the patriot and the statesman. Mr. Roberts is from
Pennsylvania.[124] He is a plain farmer, and was, once, I understand, a
mechanic. Though he cannot boast of a liberal education, yet nature has
given him a mind, which, with early improvement, would have made him
prominent in any sphere in life. It is vigorous and powerful in no
ordinary degree, and the sophistry of art, and the dexterity of
learning, are often foiled and defeated {375} by the unaided and
spontaneous efforts of his native good sense. But he has that which is
of more sterling advantage, both to himself and his country,--immoveable
political and moral integrity. It is gratifying, in this age of
corruption and voluptuousness, to contemplate men like Aristides,
Fabricius, and Cato. They exhibit to us the true dignity of man, and
hold out examples that we must feel delighted to imitate. They show us
to what pitch of excellence man is capable of attaining, and rescue the
exalted condition of human nature from that odium and disgrace which
profligacy and corruption have heaped upon it. No spectacle can be more
sublime or more elevating than he, who, in the hour of public danger and
trial, and amidst the allurements and fascinations of vice, stands like
a rock in the ocean, placid and immoveable, and endures the dangers that
surround, and braves the storms and tempests that beat upon him, with
undeviating firmness, for the safety of his country and the glory of his
God! The mind rests upon such a character as the eye upon a spot of
fertility, amidst deserts of sand, and we rise from the blood-stained
page of history, and the corruptions of the living world, with a heart
filled with love, admiration, and reverence, by the contemplation of the
few who have shed an imperishable lustre on the exalted character of
man. This description is not exaggerated; it is drawn from nature and
truth, and {376} fancy has nothing to do with the picture. But I must
now hasten to finish my portraits of American characters.

Mr. Bagot,[125] the English minister to this government, appears to be
about thirty-five years of age. He is tall, elegant, and rather graceful
in his person, with a countenance open and ingenuous, an English
complexion, and eyes mild though dark. He has ingratiated himself with
the Americans, by the real or affected simplicity of his manners, and by
assimilating himself to their usages and customs. He has thrown aside
the reserve and hauteur of the English character, as not at all suited
to the meridian of this country, and attends to all with equal courtesy
and politeness. I can say nothing of the powers of his mind, but they do
not appear to be more than ordinary. It has always seemed to me very
strange policy on the part of the British cabinet, to appoint ministers
to this country of inferior capacity and inconsiderable reputation,
while the Americans send to our court only their most prominent and
leading men, who have distinguished themselves by their ability and
their eloquence.

The French minister, M. Hyde de Neuville,[126] is a "fat, portly
gentleman," with a broad chest, big head, and short neck, which he seems
almost incapable of turning _ad libitum_. He is full of {377} Bourbon
importance and French vivacity; has petits soupers every Saturday
evening during the winter, and spends his summer at the springs, or his
country residence, in extolling the virtues of his beloved Louis _le
desiré_. I do not think that M. Neuville, though an amiable, and, I
understand, a benevolent man, has that kind of talent which would
qualify him for the station he holds, or that, in the event of any
difficulty arising between this country and France, he could counteract
the intrigues of diplomatic ingenuity, or benefit his nation, by
inducing the American cabinet, though I believe he is highly esteemed,
to adopt any measure not manifestly advantageous to the United States.
He has been many years a resident of this country, and was driven from
France by the persecutions of Buonaparte. He is said to have evinced for
his exiled countrymen much feeling and interest, and to have given them,
while strangers and unknown in a foreign land, all the aid he could
afford. His acts of benevolence certainly redound to the credit of his
heart, and I should be sorry to say any thing that would disparage the
qualities of his head. He is too much occupied with his own, or other
people's concerns, to attend to the little or the complicated intrigues
of courts, and though he resides here as a representative, yet he now
represents a cypher.

       *       *       *       *       *

{378} _4th_.--To tea with J. C. Wright, Esq., to meet a young man, Mr.
Dawson, who is giving up a school here to go as "Teacher to the Cherokee
nation of Indians." Much enthusiasm takes him there; little will be
needed to bring him back again. Since my return, Washington has been
visited by some very distant and interesting tribes of Indians, with the
following account of whom I have been favoured by a friend residing

    _Some account of the Indians who visited all the Chief Cities in
    the Eastern States, and made a long stay in Washington in the
    winter of 1821_.

These Indians were the chiefs and half-chiefs of tribes from the most
western part of this continent with which we are at all acquainted, and
came under the guidance of Major O'Fallan[127] from the Counsel
Bluffs.[128] All of them were men of large stature, very muscular,
having fine open countenances, with the real noble Roman nose, dignified
in their manners, and peaceful and quiet in their habits. There was no
instance of drunkenness among them during their stay here. The
circumstances which led to their visit were singular. A missionary, who
had been amongst them a few years back, on renewing his visit recently,
found an old chief, with whom he was acquainted, degraded from his rank,
and another appointed in his place. This led to inquiries after the
cause, which proved to be that this chief having, during a considerable
{379} absence from his tribe, visited some of the cities of the whites,
carried back such a report of their houses, ships, numbers, wealth, and
power, that they disbelieved his account, and degraded him as a man
unworthy of being longer their chief. They inquired of their
missionaries, who confirmed the statement, and they met in council with
other tribes, and resolved that a deputation should, in company with the
representative of the great father, "see if things were so," and if they
were, the chief should be reinstated. They have returned, saying the
"half was not told them." Red Jacket[129] (of whom you have heard) used
to say, that "the great spirit was too great a being to overlook red
men; that he listened to the talk of red men as well as to the talk of
white men;" but these natives of the forest thought the great spirit
favoured white men more than red. An anecdote is related of one of the
chiefs (a Pawnee) which is a well authenticated fact, and recorded by
Dr. Morse in his account of visits to the western regions.[130] The
tribe of the Pawnees had taken a woman prisoner from a neighbouring
tribe with whom they were at war, and, as was their custom, they made
every preparation to offer her a sacrifice to the great spirit. Every
thing was prepared, the wood, the green withes, and the fire, and the
victim, when this chief suddenly flew and seized her, carried her under
his arm to a neighbouring thicket, where {380} he had prepared horses
for her and himself, and riding away at speed, he, after three days'
travelling through the woods, returned her in safety to her tribe and
friends. This event was considered by the Pawnee tribe as an
interference of the great spirit in her favour, and on the return of the
chief no questions were asked him on that subject, nor has a woman been
offered a sacrifice by that tribe since. As a compliment justly due to
his gallant exploit, a number of ladies in this city had a medal made,
and presented to him in due form, in the presence of all the Indians; on
one side of which was represented the preparation for the sacrifice,
and on the reverse the chief running off with a woman under his arm, and
two horses stationed at a short distance, surmounted by this
inscription, "To the bravest of the Braves," (the Pawnees are also
called the Braves). These Indians excited so much interest from their
dignified personal appearance, and from their peaceful manner, that they
received a great number of rich presents, sufficient to fill six large
boxes in New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington; these were
forwarded before they left us. Their portraits, which are gone with
them, were taken in oil by Mr. King in their native costume, buffalo
skins, with the hair inside, turned back at the neck and breast, which
looked very handsome, like fur collars. Eight, however, the chiefs and
{381} the squaw, Mr. King copied and keeps himself.[131] He received 400
dollars from _Uncle Sam_ for it. There was a notice in the papers that
the Indians would dance and display their feats in front of the
President's house on a certain day, which they did to at least 6,000
persons. They shewed their manner of sitting in council, their dances,
their war whoop, with the noises, gesticulations, &c. of the centinels
on the sight of an approaching enemy. They were in a state of perfect
nudity, except a piece of red flannel round the waist and passing
between the legs. They afterwards performed at the house of his
Excellency M. Hyde de Neuville. They were painted horribly, and
exhibited the operation of scalping and tomahawking in fine style.

The Otta half-chief[132] and his squaw have taken tea with and
frequently visited us. She was a very good natured, mild woman, and he
shewed great readiness in acquiring our language, being inquisitive,
retaining any thing that he was once informed, and imitating admirably
the tones of every word. He spent the evening with us before they
finally left the city. I took himself and squaw into Dr. Barber's room,
and opened gently the skeleton case. He looked slyly in, and the wife
wanted to look, but he put himself in an attitude to represent a dead
person, and said, "_no good, no good_." She still wanted to see, but he
would {382} not let her. Three others came afterwards wanting to see it,
who, when I opened it, raised themselves up in a dignified manner and
said, "_very good_," one of them taking hold of the hand said, "how you
do."[133] The Otta half-chief and squaw afterwards saw it together and
were very well pleased. Our children were all full of play with them,
and the squaw nursed the younger ones. Margaret wanted to go with them.
The calumet[134] of peace (the tomahawk pipe and their own sumach
tobacco) frequently went round, and they expressed a wish to see us

I have recorded much of the vocabulary of these Indians, and would
transcribe it, but have not room. They count by tens as we do, for
instance, _noah_, two; _taurny_, three; _crabraugh_, ten; _crabraugh
noah_, twenty; _crabraugh taurny_, thirty, &c. They hold polygamy as
honourable; one wife, _no good_; three, _good_; four, _very good_. In
their talks with the residents they shew no wish to adopt our habits.

_5th._--To dine with Dr. Dawes at his poor, worn out farm, of which he
is already tired. The Doctor seems one of the best Englishmen I have met
in America.

_Sunday, 6th._--Dr. Rice[135] preaching this day in Congress-hall before
the senate, and representatives, {383} called the assembly, polite,
just, respected, respectable, and deemed it unnecessary to mention sin
and human depravity.

American husbands abound in outward politeness and respect to their
wives; and gentlemen, in general, are excessively attentive to the fair
sex, rising and leaving their seats, even at church, to accommodate the
late coming ladies. I gave much offence, on a recent occasion, by my
want of gallantry in this particular. The meanest white woman is here
addressed by the title of _Madam_.

It may also be mentioned, as a proof of superior civilization and
refinement in manners, that a stranger cannot, in this country, enter
and join a party or social circle, without being publicly presented by
name, and exchanging names and hearty shakes of the hand with all
present. Should he, however, happen to enter and take his seat without
submitting to this indispensable ceremony, he must remain dumb and
unnoticed, as an intruder, or as a person whose character renders him
unfit for introduction, and for the acquaintance of any. But, on the
other hand, when properly presented, he is instantly at home; and ever
after, at any distance of time and place, acknowledged as entitled to
the goodwill and friendship of all who thus met him. Friendships are
thus formed and propagated, and the boundaries of society in the new
world extended. It would hence be impracticable for me to be half an
hour, as has happened to me in England, {384} unknowingly present with a
person of distinction; and many unpleasant mistakes and
misunderstandings are thus obviated.

_8th._--I heard Mr. Speaker Clay deliver a splendid speech of four hours
long on the Missouri slave-question. His voice fills the house; his
action is good and generally graceful.

I met this evening Mr. Smith, a young gentleman from Lincolnshire, the
fellow-traveller of Mr. Parr, who walked through the west, and admired
all! He is not determined on continuing here; he has a good farm in
England. He and Mr. Parr have been introduced by a member of Congress to
the President, who sat half an hour familiarly talking with them, in a
plain, domestic, business-like manner.

_Sunday, 13th._--From the Speaker's chair in Congress-hall, I heard the
young, learned, and reverend professor Everett, of Cambridge University,
(aged 29) preach most eloquently to the President and legislature of
this great empire.[136] His voice, bewitchingly melodious, yet manly,
filled the house, and made every word tell, and every ear hear. "_Time
is short_," was the subject. His discourse was full of high praise of
this land, it being, he said, (in my own language) "the only resting
place for liberty, who, when driven hence, must ascend in her pure,
white robes to heaven. No more new continents will be discovered for
her reception, and therefore let this nation wisely {385} keep her
asylum here." He then spoke very warmly against kings, lords, and
priests, and what he called the toleration of man and his rights. "In
England they tolerate liberty; and what is liberty there? A shadow! But
here, a substance! There her existence is only nominal. She is mocked by
her very name." Independent of its moral instruction, this sermon was a
fine specimen of oratory, and greatly interested the members of both
houses, who very cordially shook the preacher by the hand. Though not
forgetting slavery in his discourse, the professor seemed too partial to

This gentleman had just returned from his tour through Europe, where he
visited Sir Walter Scott, and other distinguished literati, and preached
in London.

I met Mr. Lowndes, the Howard of America, at Mr. Elliott's. He says,
that "Harmony presents much moral philosophy in practice. Flesh and
blood had hard work at first, but now they have but few desires to
gratify. Nature seems under the hatches, and they have little to wish,
want, or fear. But theirs is a stagnant life."

_14th._--Read Mr. John Wright's pamphlet on Slavery, in which he uses my
name in reference to my negro letter, and shows very clearly the evil
effects of slavery on the character of this country, and proves the
unalterable nature of the black man's right to liberty, and its

{386} Mr. Rufus King, a member for New York, a gentlemanly English-like
speaker, confines himself to business, and to the grand fundamental
principles of every political question, and the consequences likely to
result from extending slavery over the continent. "In time," says he,
"you will enable the blacks to enslave the whites. Why, therefore,
should we of the free, be compelled to suffer with you of the slave

_18th._--I supped with Dr. Alison,[137] Chaplain to Congress, a
gentleman possessing every variety of knowledge. He is the friend and
correspondent of the Ex-presidents Jefferson and Adams, and of the
present President, and is known all over the country by his virtues.
This gentleman was visited by the black Baron de Vasey, and his friend,
from St. Domingo, who supped with him. On their quitting the room, the
doctor's black servant set up a laugh, which might be heard by the
baron, and all, far and near. "What's the matter, Sam?" said the doctor.
"Why, two niggers sat and took tea with my massa, at the same table!!"
In Virginia, the doctor complained of his fears of being murdered by the
negroes, one hundred of whom were owned by his hostess. She cried and
said, "she hoped the Lord would protect her." "Oh, no! you must not look
to the Lord for it; it is not there." She said she would free them, if
she could find any body to support them. Freed slaves must quit the
states, or be sold by it for slaves again! {387} Colonel Taylor has a
black uncle, a slave, for his body guard, and most owners are related to
their black cattle. A gentleman of Washington, too kind-hearted to whip
his house-negroes himself, leaves it to his wife, a fashionable,
beautiful female, holding, and going to levees, yet able to cow-hide her
negroes, whose screams, under the lash, scare Mrs. Little and family. A
cow-hide is no uncommon appendage of ladies here!

Squire Simpson, an old emigrant from England, whom I have before
mentioned as living near this city, once acted as a magistrate. Two
parties came before him for justice, but neither of them seemed disposed
to submit to his worship's decision. At last, the most choleric of the
two thus addressed Mr. Simpson: "Well! I don't see, I guess, that we can
settle it fairly. So here's at you. I'll fight you, Squire!" Both then
went out, magistrate and man, and decided the affair by battle. Simpson
was victor.

_24th._--Revisited Dr. Dawes, who is full of improving his farm by a
summer fallow, and turning it into grass without a crop. He has paid
only half the cash for his farm of 500 acres, because the title cannot
be completed. Any one, says ex-squire Simpson, would take it off his
hands. The doctor deems, as does Sir H. Davy, that plaster of Paris is
the natural food of plants; and it is found, more or less, in almost all
soils, particularly in England, {388} where manuring with plaster is
found to have but little effect, but in this country vice versâ.

Visited Mr. Plant, who holds 400 acres, all cleared and enclosed long
ago, and exhausted too, at 100 dollars a year rent, offered for sale at
fifteen dollars an acre, poor but useful, light, sandy loam, shining
bright with silvery mica. He manages this estate without a capital, by
the labour of himself, one slave and a boy; he hires none. He has sold
Bradford's Rest, a large estate, costing seven dollars, for 20 dollars
per acre; well sold!

_26th._--I rode this day to the bench of his worship, Squire Arden, with
Doctor Dawes, who was served with a warrant for a small debt for goods.
I carried the Doctor's diploma, to prove him a physician, authorized to
write prescriptions. The plaintiff is a neighbour of the Doctor's, who
had prescribed for his family, and therefore pleaded a set off. The
plaintiff then swore he would prove that the Doctor never was sent for
nor came! The Doctor considers almost all here as unprincipled and
conspiring against his cash. Quitting the diploma for the plough, he
gave up a practice of 400 or 500 pounds a year, at Wisbeach, in England,
where he was highly esteemed. His humanity here to poor exiles,
distinguishes him as a patriot and a philanthropist, and entitles him to
the applause and goodwill of all mankind. In September last, poor John
Steed, the English Quaker, {389} was fed, housed, physicked, and
restored to health, by this benevolent man. Steed was returning to
England; but how to return without money? There was money for him! My
warm-hearted friend, _the watchman_, a dear friend of the Rev. I.
Leathes, brother-in-law of the late Bishop of Bristol, put into Steed's
empty hands a purse, amply sufficient for his land and sea expenses.
This was noble! It is well to praise man for his humanity to a suffering
brother, but better to ascribe all the glory to his Maker, who gives
all, and blesses him with a generous heart, and who has promised that
"He who deviseth liberal things, by liberal things shall he stand."

_March 11th._--I revisited the astronomical, mathematical, and
philosophical Mr. W. Elliott, dining on vegetables only. He states that
it is impossible for a sensible, honest Englishman to prefer this
country to his own; and in knowing that he has quitted England for ever,
he experiences a feeling indescribably painful. To return no more is a
word next to death. Although he would not, at present, desire to live in
England, yet he would not advise any to quit who can live in it. The
soil here is unfit for man, and for an Englishman particularly. Both
mind and body barbarize and degenerate. He feels, at first, sanguine,
but soon after he begins to judge and compare, and finds that though the
government allured him here, yet that all is not gold that glitters. He
becomes {390} weak and emaciated, and drifts into the habits of the
country, where he is no longer the man he thought himself at first. The
labouring poor here are far behind, and more miserable than the poor,
bold peasantry of England. No man needs labour here long, if he would
work and not drink excessively; but he drinks and is undone.

_Sunday, 12th._--Met J. G. Wright, Esq. who has consumed, in segars, for
his own use, since he began smoking, twenty years since, 700 barrels of
flour, at the present price. One hundred and fifty dollars annually is
the cost of his smoking.

_14th._--The Hon. T. Law brought, it is said, half a million sterling
with him to this country, but has lost two-thirds of it. He married the
niece of General Washington, the most beautiful lady in Virginia; and,
at her uncle's request, Mr. Law settled on her, in case they parted,
15,000 dollars a year. The event, which seemed thus to be anticipated,
soon after occurred; for Mr. Law visiting England soon after his
marriage and leaving his wife in America, she, during his absence,
eloped with a young dashing officer in the army. Mr. Law returned only
to part with one of the most accomplished ladies in the land. She still
lives in high style, and her house is the resort of the most fashionable

By Mr. Sutton, an English gentleman from Cheshire, I was this day
introduced to an hour's conversation with Mr. John Law, a lawyer of this
{391} city, son of Mr. Thomas Law, above mentioned. This gentleman
occupies a mean office, but seems very sprightly and acute, and though a
plain republican, has much of the blood of the Laws in him. He states
that he is in expectation of receiving 80,000_l._ from Sir Wm. T----,
for purchasing land in the wilds of the west, which is to increase in
value greatly in twenty years. For the same purpose, he also wishes to
get 150,000_l._ from English capitalists, who never mean to emigrate,
but who only wish to invest money in western lands. There are several
millions of acres, some of which, military lands in Illinois, are
selling at 37 and 50 cents an acre. Mr. Law proposes to be the agent,
and live on the spot, to settle poor emigrants from England on it, by
finding them implements and money for commencing, which is to be repaid
in produce. They are to live seven years rent free. He would make it his
business to interest emigrant societies in favor of this speculation, by
which the posterity of such capitalists are to benefit greatly. Mr. Law
is to receive only one quarter of the cash for his own trouble, that is,
_only_ about 37,000_l._ or 40,000_l._ out of the 150,000_l._

Birkbeck (he says) must be rich in ten years; which ten years of life he
admits a man must sacrifice before he can arrive at _comforts_. Ohio, he
states, has proved what time can do for a wilderness; and I say, that
time has proved that those {392} enriching improvements made by hands,
and not by time, can be bought any where for less than they cost in that
State, or almost in any other, Kentucky perhaps excepted.

_A reflection or two on litigation!_--The Judges here have not legal
knowledge enough for their station; and of course not weight of
character or dignity sufficient to fill it well. Counsellor Jones and
Key, of "_star-spangled banner_" fame, influence, and carry their
honours almost as they please.[139] The bar is greater than the bench!

Litigation frequently arises here from the imaginary independence which
one man has, or fancies he has of others, to show which, on the least
slip, a suit is the certain result. It is bad for the people that law is
cheap, as it keeps them constantly in strife with their neighbours, and
annihilates that sociability of feeling which so strongly characterizes
the English. From the constant litigation amongst the people of this
country arise that antisocial apathy, and want of those kindly feelings
of the heart, which shew themselves on all occasions, in the conduct and
character of the people of the old country. There were more suits for
debt in Washington county court, in a late term, (seventeen hundred),
than, perhaps, in all England! Further comments are left to the reader.

Judge Parsons, while only an advocate, completely upset the evidence
against a prisoner who employed him, and that in the following manner.
{393} The witnesses against the prisoner were all sailors. The advocate
disguised himself as a sailor, and offered to bet them twenty dollars
that the accused would not be hanged. They readily accepted the bet, and
when they came, over anxious to give evidence and convict the prisoner
at the bar, the learned counsel confounded them with their bet, the
court spurned their evidence, and the prisoner, though guilty, escaped
by this learned stratagem. At another time, in an important case of law,
where several parties were interested, he was requested to plead, he
said, "No! I cannot see my way clear." They then offered him 1,000
dollars for his neutrality, which he took. The other side then came.
"No," said he, as before. "Well then," said they, "if you will not plead
for us, we will give you 1,000 dollars not to be against us;" which sum
he took, and left other advocates to talk.

Edward C----, late in the service of Joseph Vipan, Esq. of Sutton, is
here elevated from the smock frock and stable, to the dress and society
of a merchant in this city. So great is the change and so mighty the
tyranny of custom, that what were his duties last year, would now be a
disgrace to him. Another would-be gentleman, in the same store, was
requested to assist his employer, a polished Englishman, in rolling a
barrel of dried fish out of the cellar into a cart only. "Oh! no, that
is _nigger's_ work," said he; and then left a good situation within two
hours after {394} he came to it. Such are the blessed effects of

_15th._--Met Mr. Cooper, an English gentleman, at Washington, who has
grown comfortable rich, and has recently bought about 300 acres of land,
near this city, so exhausted, that no produce can be had from it for
years to come. The system pursued here, if carried into the old country,
would soon lay it waste, more effectually than either fire or sword. It
is more difficult to raise a hundred dollars here than a hundred pounds
in England. Individuals, who are rich in land, are generally without
cash, and have their personalty seized, and sold for small debts, of a
few dollars only.

_16th._--All kinds of fruit and vegetables (potatoes excepted) are now
remarkably scarce, and enormously dear, insomuch that they are not seen,
during the winter and spring, except on the tables of the rich. In
summer they cost as much or more than butcher's meat; yet thousands of
acres, all round the city, close to water and manure, are to be had by
any body free of rent! In summer the potatoes were one dollar fifty
cents per bushel; now, eastern potatoes sell for 50 to 75 cents, and
nothing but potatoes come on the tables of the bulk of the people. What
is the cause? "Why," says one, "the gardeners get rich and ride in their
single horse chaise, because the business is so profitable. They have no
competition. {395} Whatever they send to market is sold only at their
own price. It is their will to have 150 per cent, above the value of an
article. Rather than undersell, they would carry home their vegetables
for the cattle and pigs!" So that the will of the gardener governs the
price, although the means of opposition are open to all! The poor farmer
comes to market with his flour, but _his_ will is to take just what is
offered him. He is not in the gardener's secret of insisting and willing
to have ten dollars a barrel for flour, when worth only four dollars and
a half. But what is the real cause of the high price of vegetables in
this soil and climate of Washington? Why, no body gardens; not even the
rich; because they can buy cheaper than they can raise them; and it is
found that none but the poor, humble man, who has no capital, will
attempt it, because others can employ capital more profitably than in
gardening. It is therefore an undoubted fact, that the soil and climate
do not admit of vegetables being raised, at a much lower price than that
at which they are actually sold. In summer, continual watering and
shading are absolutely necessary, and the soil is poor into the bargain;
insomuch that the seed rises so weak, that the sun would burn up the
plants instantly, without great attention to shade and watering, and if
this were not so, myriads of grasshoppers would eat all in spite of any
measures for their preservation.

{396} _Winter Prices of Garden-stuff_

Winter greens, lightly put in, one quarter dollar per peck.

Spinach, the same.

Cabbages, of about four oz. weight, yellow and bad, having been buried
from the frost, four cents each.

Potatoes, seventy-five cents a bushel.

Carrots, bad and scabby, 9_d._ sterling, to one quarter dollar per peck.

_23rd._--Commodore Stephen Decatur[140] fell this day in a duel, having
killed five men in the same way himself. He swore shamefully at the
doctors while dying, because they could not extract the fatal ball from
his bowels. He is called by the National Intelligencer, "One of the
bright stars of Columbia, set for ever!" And the country is summoned to
mourn for him. The president and the heads of departments, with military
and naval officers and citizens, walked in procession at his funeral.
The laws of heaven and earth, on this subject, are here quite insulted,
by common consent. A lady of this district, hearing that her husband was
gone to fight a duel, fifty miles off, sent an express, charging that he
should be brought home a corpse rather than disgraced. It is a rule here
always to take skilful aim, and if one party chooses to reserve his
fire, he may go up and shoot the other, if he does not beg for his life.
{397} A gentleman once would not beg it, but the other said, "If your
life is not worth asking for, it is not worth taking!" And so fired in
the air.

A sinecure, or something in the nature of one, is held by Joseph
Paulding, Esq. of Washington.[141] The holder of this situation is
enjoined to write in defence of the American character and government,
and at the same time to vilify the British. Mr. Colvin, late editor of
the National Register, in a critique on Lancaster's lectures, says,
"that we (meaning America) are more virtuous than the people of other
nations, I cannot believe. It is sufficient that we are equal, not
worse." That there is no great superiority of moral worth on the part of
America, the following anecdote will prove. A gentleman seduced the
sister of his own wife, and then, to hide her disgrace, disguised his
wife in the uniform of a lieutenant of the United States' navy, and
married the young woman to her. The lieutenant of course went to sea
immediately, and, poor man! was never heard of more. The nuptials were
celebrated by candle-light, and all the gay company, except the priest,
were parties to this ingenious trick!

_24th._--Flour now is only four dollars and a half a barrel, five
bushels to a barrel. After hauling, grinding, and the cost of the empty
barrel, are deducted, it is seen that the farmer only receives two
dollars fifty cents, for five bushels of fine wheat. Under such
circumstances, where is profit?

{398} _Sunday, 26th._--I left this city and old friends, to return,
perhaps, no more. At Baltimore, on my way to Philadelphia, I met Joseph
Lancaster, teaching a few small children.

_28th._--Again at Philadelphia, where British and French goods are
selling at 200 per cent. under cost. So great is the distress for money,
that the regular merchants are sending their stock to auction. I visited
Mr. Potter, an English merchant, who has been established here ever
since the peace of 1786. He is now rich, but loves England still. He was
intimately known to the Duke of Kent. He says that corruption is rising
into an English sense, even here; and adding the state and general taxes
together, they make a sum little short of English taxation.

_29th._--Six hundred prisoners are this day in a state of mutiny,
endeavouring to escape by violence from the Philadelphia state prison.
One is shot, and three or four are wounded. The mail robbers now in
custody killed the driver of the mail, but they have restored all the
money, and pray that they may not be hanged.

_31st._--I parted with my old friend C., who promised to meet me again
at Baltimore, in June. I reached Newcastle, Delaware State, and visited
its old Golgotha, on a bluff, near the river Delaware, which washes the
feet of the dead, exposes a great part of the coffin, and bleaches the
skulls and bones of men. Numbers of horses tread on the {399} graves and
break in the coffins, for here is nothing to protect these bones from

I saw the effect of the late freezing rain on the trees, which, over an
extent of country six times as large as England, has despoiled trees as
completely as if chain shot had passed through them all. The trees and
shrubs are laden with ice, a weight ten times that of their own boughs.
Many farmers lost nearly all their timber and orchards: a ship also was
upset by the great weight of the ice adhering to her rigging.

_April 7th._--I met with a black gentleman who has bought a beautiful
farm, with a good house and improvements, six miles only from
Philadelphia, at twenty dollars an acre, at a sheriff's sale. A law has
just passed to prevent any more selling under two thirds of a fair
valuation. A quaker whom I met, states that Joseph Lancaster injured
himself by going to Baltimore. He did not succeed at Philadelphia, the
only place where he could have succeeded, because he expected more
attention from the inhabitants of that city, than they ever pay to any

Visited Peale's museum,[142] a fine collection of native and foreign
curiosities, amongst the former of which are the skeleton of a mammoth,
15 feet high, and horns, nine feet long, under the belly of which, as
under an arch, a horse might run full gallop. I crept down the throat of
an alligator. {400} Several bodies of Indian chiefs are here to be seen
dried, standing in their usual dresses and attitudes, as well as some
Otaheiteans.[143] There is also the skin from the thighs and legs of an
Indian, tanned by Indians into fine leather, for thus they use their
prisoners taken in battle. I saw the manuscript of a poem of Major
André, penned about two months before his execution.[144] Here is also a
fine collection of national portraits.

_8th._--I this day set sail from Philadelphia for Charleston, in the
_General Wade Hampton_, and anchored at Newcastle in the evening.

_Sunday, 9th._--I rode with the captain, in his chariot, to the
beautiful seat and extensive powder mills of E. S. Dupont, Esq.[145] on
the Brandywine creek, a fine stream full of natural falls and working
many mills. We went for 500 barrels of gunpowder. Mr. Dupont, who
pressingly invited us to dine, seems a liberal, intelligent Frenchman,
of large capital, which sometimes vanishes by explosion, together with
the doors and windows of his elegant mansion.

During this twenty miles ride, I observed that thorn quicks are here
generally used as an outward fence, but they are badly managed. I saw,
on poor wet lands, large heaps of lime, formed by oyster shells and
stone, gathered and burnt for manure; in this way cheaply turning stone
into bread.

We received this evening three or four physicians {401} and other
passengers, to the number of ten or twelve, on board the _Wade Hampton_.

_10th._--At three, this morning, we got under weigh, sailing into the
bay of Delaware, and by noon arrived opposite to the light-house.

A family (says the Captain) from England, of the name of Clementson,
recently bought an estate from a scoundrel old countryman, of the name
of Watson, living at Philadelphia, at a price 200 or 300 per cent. above
its value. They paid in part about 6,000 dollars, but being unable to
pay the remainder, and having no written contract, he induced them to
quit and go to the wilds of Ohio, where, he said, he had much land at a
low price, which they should have for the money in his hand. He also
kindly gave them a letter of credit to his agent there; but on arriving,
they found that he was unknown, and had no land, nor agent; and they
were in consequence forced to sell their horses, waggon, and every
necessary, to enable them, in unspeakable distress, to return to
prosecute this scoundrel; but they had no evidence against him, and
therefore found it advisable to lose their money without going to law.
Having about 2,000 dollars left, they purchased and stocked a farm
bigger and better than the one for which they were to have paid 8,000,
or 10,000 dollars. Old countrymen, it is said, make the most complete

_11th._--Now at sea, exposed to head-winds and sea-sickness. An Irish
gentleman from Missouri, {402} states that last week, on board the
steam-boat, he met a black archbishop and several of his inferior
clergy. This most reverend father in God was endeavouring to prove that
Adam, Noah, and all the prophets, and patriarchs, down to Jesus Christ,
were blacks, and that a small portion of mankind, and that the worst,
are whites, of whom Cain is the progenitor.

The Missouri Irishman has invested 50,000 dollars in land, the
advantages of which he deems to be yet dubious and prospective. He says
that society is bad, and that the people are unprincipled.

_12th._--Two old German gentlemen, heroes of the revolution, now on
board, state, that they knew the accomplished and unfortunate Major
André. When taken by three militiamen, in the capacity of a British spy,
endeavouring to seduce West Point, he was dressed as a citizen, instead
of appearing in the regimentals of his country, which greatly aggravated
his crime. He offered his gold watch and purse, and large pecuniary
compensation to be released, but the three men were firm. Both sides
regretted, and were unwilling to witness, his death; and the American
government would have saved him, if the British would have given up the
traitor Arnold. He was fairly tried, and no precipitation evinced
towards him. He thanked the court martial for their gentlemanly
treatment, submitted to his fate as a matter of course, and {403} with
great firmness prepared himself for it. Three months elapsed between his
apprehension and execution. But when he was led out to execution, and
saw the gallows instead of the rifle, his firmness, in some measure,
forsook him. He was elegantly dressed in his martial suit, and on giving
his cravat to his waiting man, only said, "I die for the honour of my
king and country;" at which General Green, the American commander, who
presided in the midst of the surrounding army on this sad occasion,
shook his head, and observed, "No! you die for your cowardice, and like
a coward!"

General Washington signed the order for his death with great reluctance;
but the army were dissatisfied and demanded the sacrifice. The example
was necessary and salutary, and in its general consequence calculated to
deter men of honour and respectability from such military meanness.
Major André hoped to the last to escape. The tories, of whom he was one,
had previously murdered some of the citizens and officers, in
consequence of which, General Washington determined on retaliation by
executing one of the British tory officers then prisoners, and ordered
them to draw lots to decide who of their number must die. The lot fell
on Sir Charles Asgill, who, but for the French influence of Count
Vergennes, and a most pathetic letter from the baronet's mother, would
have been executed.[146]

{404} The quakers, about New Jersey, were very loyal, and locked up the
wells, and withheld all aid from the rebels!

_Sunday, 16th._--Fine breeze; sailing by Cape Hatteras, to pass which
occupied two days. A strong current of air is here found, rushing to the
land, accompanied generally with tempestuous gales. A gap in the
Allegany mountains, towards which this current rushes, is said to be the

_18th._--At three o'clock this afternoon I landed at Charleston, and
found all nature in its most beautiful attire. Peas and all kinds of
summer vegetables are in great abundance, and the peach-trees full of
fruit. I found that my much respected friend, N. Russell, Esq. had died
only a fortnight since; he kindly inquired after me in his extremity.

_19th._--I met my old shipmate, Mr. Moses Wood. I bought twilled nankeen
trowsers for two dollars and a half. London clothes of good and best
kinds sell at lower prices than in London.

_Rattlesnakes._--A gentleman informed me that he once shot a rattlesnake
as thick as his thigh, and 26 years old. Its age is known by its tail.
It was near biting him. A neighbour of his left his house in search of
his swine, and being long away, his wife went after him and found him
dead, killed by a snake, to the bite of which the poor deceased had
applied a quid of tobacco, then found sticking on the wound. Another
neighbour, {405} who was also bitten, managed to walk home before he
fell, but died very soon after his arrival. I was told, also, of a
planter, out with his dogs and rifle after a deer, which he shot; but on
bringing it to lay on the horse, a rattlesnake struck the man, who was
found dead, with the buck and horse, which being tied to a tree was
starved to death. Thus they were all found dead in one heap together.

_20th._--By conversation with Judge King, to whom I presented J.
Wright's pamphlet on slavery, I learn that my negro case was much
noticed, and its exposure much and indignantly regretted. Mr. King says
that it was indiscreet in me to report facts, except from the evidence
of my own senses! If no testimony is to be received, but that of our own
eyes, half the evidence in the world is worthless. The Carolinians love
slavery, and hate all who hate it. Both Mr. King and Mr. Duncan state,
that in consequence of that affair, and of my being a foreigner, a
stranger in a strange land, if Gregory should prosecute me for an
advertisement, which I found it necessary, in pursuing the claims on the
Rugeley property, to publish against him, I should meet with but little
mercy from the jury!

_21st._--Called on Patrick Duncan, Esq., and took a final leave of him
and his beautiful gardens, in which are oranges, figs, sugar-canes,
pomegranates, and the prairie grass of South America, soft as silk in

{406} Received, from my warm-hearted Irish friend, Mr. Wood, 50 dollars,
an unsolicited loan, although he knows me not. Here is faith, greater
than almost any I have yet found in America.

The slave-owners, in this state, must maintain all their helpless and
infirm slaves, or kill them privately. They cannot become chargeable to
the parish, or state. O humanity, where art thou!!! As a punishment for
the lassitude of age, or the idleness of youth, a _nigger_ is stripped
naked, well flogged, then dressed all over with treacle (or molasses)
and hung up by his heels on a tree, in a swamp full of flies and
mosquitoes, which lick up the sweets, and sting and bleed him dreadfully
into the bargain. He is then a living lump of inflammation. What
ingenious torture this! how refined! how honourable to the taste and
ingenuity of a nation, the freest of the free, and who boast of
superabundant polish and civilization!

When with my cousin, Major Rugely, in May last, I was presented with a
beautiful black female baby, that could just creep, and which was given
and intended to be sent as a keepsake to my lady in England; but I, not
being qualified for a nurse at sea, nor indeed by land, declined this
well-intended gift. The Major then possessed a poor negro, who wishing
to die, was constantly detected in the act of eating dirt or lumps of
earth, a habit which procured for him a cow-hiding daily! I might have
had him, and branded him with my own {407} brand, F. As cattle it is
necessary so to distinguish one herd from another, and if they stray, or
are stolen, to advertise their persons, correctly describing the mark,
or brand, which is deeply burnt in, and never obliterated, unless it is
cut out!

_Sunday, 23rd._--I bade, this morning, a willing and final farewell to
Charleston city, and to all its bugs, mosquitoes, negroes, and
alligators, and a race of people, many of whom seem not much better than
they. I left behind me some copies of J. Wright's pamphlet on slavery,
for his Excellency, Governor Geddiss, the Attorney-General Haines, the
editor of the Courier, Mr. Thomas Mitchel, and Mr. Judge King, the
latter of whom promised to keep his a profound secret. The press seems
here to be more enslaved than under the most despotic government. At
night I found myself at sea, 60 miles from Charleston, in the
_President_ for New York. Fare, 25 dollars.

_25th._--I saw two young alligators emigrating to the north. Mr. Morse
(the son of the geographer, Dr. Morse)[147] states, that at New Haven
University, Connecticut, an education of four years costs only 1,000
dollars, board included. The same gentleman states, that in Connecticut,
republicanism and equality exist in greater purity than in any other
part of the union. The farmers and people generally live economically
and comfortably, surrounded with a cheap abundance of all the {408}
necessaries of life, but they keep no domestic servants, male or female.
They are their own servants. As to negroes, scarcely one is to be seen
in a day's travel. The people generally are so well educated in this
state, that almost any man is qualified for a schoolmaster in any of the
sister states. Dr. Paley's moral philosophy is a text book in their

_26th._--A young gentleman on board, from the state of Albania, says
that Mobile, out of 600, lost 530 inhabitants, by the yellow fever last
summer. In winter the population is from 2 to 3,000.

A dashing English gentleman travelling through this state with a white
servant behind him, rode up to a one-room log-tavern, and begged the
landlord to let him have a room to himself, which was agreed to. In a
few minutes up came two native travellers, _equals_, who entered without
ceremony, when the Englishman began to curse the landlord for permitting
the intrusion. He replied, that he meant that the gentleman should have
the room to himself until other travellers came up.

_29th._--At ten this morning we made Sandyhook light-house. The scenery
here, all the way up to the city of New York, is delightful. Perhaps the
views presented by this city and neighbourhood are unequalled, both as
it respects the beauties of nature and the works of art. I landed at six
o'clock, and was introduced by Messrs. Morse {409} and Co. to the
boarding-house of Mrs. Mudge, where I met Mr. Dwight, a brother of the
late eminent Dr. Dwight, now editor of the New York Advertiser.[148] In
person this gentleman is said to be much like the Doctor.

_Sunday, 30th._--I accompanied Mr. Morse to the splendid Presbyterian
church of the eloquent Dr. Romaine,[149] whose prayers are the most
appropriate in manner and matter, and whose sermons are, with the
exception of Dr. Storton's, superior to any I have heard in America. On
this day, the appearance of this large city is most orderly and
christian-like. This laudable change is attributed to Sunday-schools.
All places of worship are thronged. How unlike Washington city! Mr.
Morse states that not only in New York, but in all the east, a religious
feeling generally pervades the people.

_May 1st._--Passed over to Brooklyn, a beautiful gay-looking village of
great extent in Long Island, in quest of my old friend, and western
fellow-traveller, Mr. Wheeler, whom I found three miles from the city,
living on a hired farm of about 30 acres of arable land, and six in
wood, or rather cedar, on which is a beautiful house, to which I was
warmly welcomed. It consists of six small rooms and piazzas on each
side, standing in an orchard fronting the public road, which, for four
miles, is like one continued suburban village all the way from New York.
The farm cost, two {410} years ago, without a house or well, 3,500
dollars, and the house and well have since cost 1,500 dollars. Mr.
Wheeler has hired this situation for one year only, at the rent of 300
dollars, ten dollars an acre, all poor and long-exhausted land, insomuch
that nothing can be raised without manure, which is bought at one dollar
per load, and hauled three miles.

Land, thus situated, is expected to be devoted to raising garden-stuff,
or to be occupied only as a suburban retreat. The mere farmer can
scarcely live out of it, even if it is his own, unless he cultivates
vegetables, and carries his milk to New York market, in small
quantities, daily. Those who have lived here eighteen or twenty years,
on their own estates, have only just lived, saved nothing, and been
always their own servants. Mr. Wheeler has three servants, one black
man, and a white man and woman. The white man has 100 dollars a-year;
the black man ten dollars a month; and the woman five dollars and board,
working from sun-rise to dark.

_2nd._--After dinner, Mr. Wheeler ordered out of the plough into the
carriage, his pair of handsome greys, when, with the ladies, we drove to
the beautiful neighbouring villages of New-town, Flushing, and Jamaica,
at the latter of which is the residence of Rufus King, Esq. a house by
no means equal to those of the village squires of England, yet very
inviting. Perhaps no where, {411} except in the vicinity of London and
Bath, can a more attractive ride of twenty miles be found; the whole
distance of road, from the city, seeming one continued village of new
and handsome farm-houses, with either a pleasure-garden, or green
pasture, or orchard, or all of them, in front of almost every house, any
of which may be bought, boards being up, _For sale, this farm_. But the
land, in every direction, is poor, except where superior and expensive
management exists. Every thing is sold from the land, which might make
manure and enrich it. The leaves of the forest trees now begin to
appear. The spring is late, yet the orchards are in full bloom. The
frost was severe last night.

Though he has three servants, Mr. Wheeler cleans his own boots. They
would not absolutely refuse, but would do it reluctantly, and feel
disgraced by the act; yet two of them are good servants. A black servant
lately broke into the cellar and dairy of Mr. Wheeler, and stole all the
bread and meat he could find; he is now in gaol. About two years ago, in
great rage with his sister, he caught hold of her head, and endeavoured,
with an axe, to chop it off; but not being able to get it into a fit
place, he chopped off two of her fingers, and nailed them on the

_4th._--I made, on horseback, the tour of York island, about ten miles
in length and two in breadth. On one side is the noble Hudson, or great
North River, and on the other, the East River {412} and Hell-gate, and
the beautiful villages of Manhattan, Haarlem, and Greenwich. All the
road from the city, to the extremity of, and beyond the isle, is
adorned, on both sides, with the country-seats and pleasure-grounds of
rich citizens, who, like those of London, every morning and evening
drive to and fro in great numbers. Perhaps no city in the world is so
happily situated as that of New York, standing on this island, with the
sea to the south, and these majestic rivers, from one to two miles wide,
on the north and east, the banks of which are very high, and for twelve
miles crowned with mansions. The houses on the roads, thus leading
through the isle to the city, have each from five to ten acres of green
pasture, park, or pleasure-gardens, which renders them more rural,
though less splendid than those on the roads leading to London. I saw
from fifty to 100 convicts, heavily ironed, forming a new road for the
state; receiving no pay nor shirts, but only food.

I visited the supreme court, and inquired for Messrs. Emmett and
Sampson, but saw not these celebrated refugees.[150]

Mr. Wheeler agreed to purchase a quantity of seed corn from a neighbour,
which was to be picked, but much of it came in rotten. Mr. W. returned
the rotten part, and begged other corn to be sent in its place. "No,
send it all back! that is not the way we deal here;" in great rage,
{413} said the farmer, "you may do so in your country, but not here."

_5th._--Bade farewell to Long Island, and my much esteemed friends, the
Wheelers, who pressingly invited me to stay longer. I renewed my
invitation to them to come and make Whitehall their home, when, if ever,
they came to England.

I quitted New York, for Philadelphia, at ten this morning. Left a
history of Somersham for Mr. F. Morse of Newhaven.

Visited one of the packet-ships, the _James Monroe_, the most complete I
ever saw; every birth is a state room. For forty guineas, it transports
passengers to Liverpool in high style. All are fed luxuriously.

_6th._--At six this morning, I left Borden town, on the Delaware, where
are the ruins of Joseph Bonaparte's house, about to be rebuilt. Sixty
men are employed already. The estate, consisting of 300 acres, all poor
land, is now laying out into pleasure-grounds, and park, enclosed with a
fine fence; it cost five dollars an acre. Joseph came hither, it is
said, with ten millions of dollars from the Spanish treasury.

I reached the City of Philadelphia at ten this morning, just
twenty-eight days after I left it, since which time I have travelled
about 2,000 miles, and rested eleven days.

_Sunday, 7th._--I was present when Dr Storton, {414} administered the
rites of baptism to a large, respectable auditory. He is rather pompous
in his expressions, and theatrical in his action and manner, but
certainly an accomplished man. He has said that there is no preaching
talent in America but what is imported; but this is not strictly true.

_11th._ I wrote the following epistle to Mr. Day, of St. Ives in
England, by the ship Electra, bound for London.

                                                       _May 11, 1820._

    Dear Sir,

    At this distance of time and place, the recollection of you is
    replete with all that is good and pleasant to me; while the esteem
    and regard always professed and felt for you demand, at least, one
    epistle, as a thing not to be withheld. I should have had great
    pleasure in your correspondence, but it is now too late, as my
    duties here are nearly at an end, and by the time this reaches you,
    I hope, under the guidance of gracious Providence, that the
    compass, in unison with my heart, will be pointing me towards my
    own home and country.

    The inducements to emigrate, and the facilities of living here, are
    neither so great nor so many as I wished and expected to find them.
    The majority of those who come are without capital and above useful
    labour. Of this kind seem our friends ---- and ----, and others
    known to you, whose {415} prospects are, I assure you, very
    shadowy. I speak impartially. Even capital, I believe, can any
    where be better employed than here. And as to labourers, there are
    more than can be paid. By the late report of this city, it appeared
    that 11,000 within these walls were in a state of unemployed
    pauperism; while in one prison only, are 600 thieves and
    incendiaries, the natural fruits of increasing poverty.

    Land, generally, is not property in this country, because there is
    infinitely more than enough; the surplus, therefore, is worth
    nothing. What is already in cultivation by hired hands lessens,
    rather than augments capital. Even potatoes, you know, cannot be
    produced from one without the agency of the other. The markets are
    all glutted, and without foreign demand, a surplus produce is not
    desirable, because unsaleable and perishable.

    All travel is restless labour, and "vanity and vexation of spirit."
    Its idea was once so supremely fascinating to my ambition, that I
    thought I never could have enough of it, and therefore wished
    myself doomed to perpetual travel. I have my wish, or something
    like it, and it disappoints me. During the last two years I have
    indeed found "no continuing city;" it is well if I seek and find
    one to come. I fly from city to city, from town to town, state to
    state, climate to climate, with the velocity of an eagle. I have
    frigid and tropical latitudes, polar cold and equinoxial heat,
    wintry desolation, {416} and the summery foliage of oranges and
    myrtles, all in the short space of one week, or less. For although
    this beautiful city of William Penn lies in an Egyptian latitude,
    winter has not long been over; whereas, it never enters the city of
    Charleston, which I have just quitted, where

        "Blossoms and fruits and flowers together rise,
        And all the year in rich confusion lies."

    The male youth generally of this, and other cities, are remarkably
    polished, sprightly and prepossessing in their exterior; being of
    tall and slender figures, and looking free and easy, without any
    thing like levity, for each puts on all the airs, manners, actions,
    and opinions of men, with his _first_ pair of breeches, and expects
    to be treated as a man. But ringlets decorate the faces of both
    sexes, and in other respects all are dandies, male and female! The
    young ladies generally are not so handsome as the males; though
    beauty is not rare amongst them. A woman's duties and province are,
    I think, yet undiscovered. She is here, that is, in all sections
    south of the Delaware, a little divinity, to whom all must bend,
    give place, and pay idle homage; her tyranny is great, her
    influence unbounded. Her lover, or husband, is outwardly her slave;
    but as a wife, mother, mistress, she must yield to my unequalled
    countrywomen. Youth here, is of very short duration; all soon look
    old; and "all the days of the years of this vain life," soon come
    to an end. Religion and duty seem but little understood, {417} and
    less regarded, except it be to ascertain how little of either may
    suffice. Paley's Moral Philosophy has been, perhaps, the text book
    of the educated, who are very numerous; yet but few live and die
    practical philosophers. Death is little dreaded, and often, as in
    duelling, voluntarily embraced. Two selfish gods, Pleasure and
    Gain, enslave the Americans. The scum of all the earth is drifted

    As this is sent off about a month after my other, and will be my
    last letter from this country, I wish you to inform my good father,
    if living, and Mr. Ingle, of my present refuge and intended return,
    and assure them of my best regards. My beloved child, who,
    by-the-bye, would become in part your ward if I returned no more,
    is very precious in my sight; if you knew her, I should beg you to
    pronounce a father's blessing on her; but it comes to her on every
    western breeze. When I can, I will teach her to esteem you, and
    perpetuate, what is of little value, the disinterested and most
    sincere friendship of,

                              Dear Sir,
                                      Your very obedient servant,
                                                              W. FAUX.

_11th._--Mistrust and suspicion are general in Philadelphia. The cause
is a general disregard or violation of duty. Two respectable quakers
would not suffer Mr. ---- to owe them eight {418} dollars for a day or
two, though guaranteed by a second person, who, for any thing they knew,
might be respectable; so they took out two pieces of muslin to reduce
the bill down to the funds in hand. "Notwithstanding this guarantee,"
said the quaker, "I will, and must have the thing squared." The
representative of my friend then paid the complete balance. I was
present at this transaction, and feeling both pained and amused, began
to speculate upon it, and to consider what could have generated this
general suspicion and distrust. It is the common effect of some cause.
What cause? A general violation or neglect of some prominent duties, not
directly guarded by the laws, but the observance of which is
indispensable to the good of mankind every where. Culpability of this
kind, in not doing to others as we would be done by, does more injury to
the world than all the thieves and incendiaries put together; because
the consequence in one case is particular, in the other illimitable. If
I act justly towards my neighbour, I confer both temporal and moral good
on him and on myself. But it stops not here: he learns thereby its
value, and acts in like manner towards others. On the other hand, if I
violate my duty to him, he retaliates not only on me, but on others
indiscriminately. He thinks he has been honest and unsuspicious long
enough, and bids adieu to rectitude perhaps for ever.

Last month at Dover, Delaware, Squire Loper {419} received sentence of
the court for passing forged notes, knowing them to be so. He had been
in the commission of the peace for 20 years, and received the forged
notes from a gang convicted before him of forgery. The notes had
remained in his hands ever since. A month ago, he desired a gentleman, a
neighbour of his going to Philadelphia, to buy him some iron, and
meeting the gentleman privately, gave him fifty dollars, saying, "Take
notice it is a fifty dollar note," and gave it him carefully wrapped in
paper. When the bearer offered it for the iron, it was discovered to be
one of the forged notes, well known to have been offered by the gang
before. The gentleman had some difficulty in keeping out of the
Penitentiary. On proving himself not to be a party concerned, and
promising to bring the Squire forward, he was released. The Squire
admitted the note to be forged, and said, he gave it to his friend only
in joke. On being arrested, he was treated with great liberality, but he
acted haughtily and foolishly. On his trial he would not employ counsel
nor set up any defence; but in a cool, sneering manner said, that the
note was given in joke, and the court might do as they would. He was
sentenced to six months' solitary confinement, thirty-nine lashes, and
never after to pass out of his own house in Dover without the letter F,
a foot long in scarlet, on his back, on pain of another six months'
confinement and thirty-nine stripes. But so great was the {420} public
pity for him, in court and out, both with judge and jury, that the
prison door was left open for him in hope that he would escape and quit
the neighbourhood for ever. He did escape into the town only, and came
back to prison voluntarily, where no such chance is again to be afforded

At night, I went to the black church, where the black minister shewed
much uncultivated talent. After sermon they began singing merrily, and
continued, without stopping, one hour, till they became exhausted and
breathless. "Oh! come to Zion, come!" "Hallelujah, &c." And then, "O
won't you have my lovely bleeding _Jasus_," a thousand times repeated in
full thundering chorus to the tune of "Fol de rol." While all the time
they were clapping hands, shouting, and jumping, and exclaiming, "Ah
Lord! Good Lord! Give me _Jasus_! Amen." At half-past ten this meeting
broke up. For an hour it seemed like Bedlam let loose. At the close, one
female said, striking the breasts of two male friends, "We had a happy
time of it."

_16th._--Last week, in the state of Delaware, the High Sheriff had to
perform the duty of Jack Ketch, and hang his own nephew, for the murder
of his _own_ mother, the Sheriff's sister. The youth killed her by
striking her with a club on the temple. In the same neighbourhood and
the same week another youth was sent to gaol for poisoning his uncle, a
rich old gentleman, who being childless, had {421} taken this nephew
into the house and made him heir to all; but the youth being impatient,
went to a druggist for arsenic, which he said was to kill the rats, that
every night kept his uncle from sleeping. He mixed a portion of it in a
glass of apple-toddy and gave it to his uncle, but in so large a portion
that it began to operate immediately, on which the old man said, "You
have given me something to do me harm." The youth denied it, but the old
man grew rapidly sick, and feeling conscious that he was poisoned and
should die before the distant doctor could arrive, got out the will in
favor of the ungrateful youth, and having burnt it, died soon after.

A short time ago, the friends of a murderer, under sentence of death in
Pennsylvania, conspired together to procure a pardon from the governor,
by threats and intimidation. Their plan was to get the governor into a
room to themselves, and offer him his own life for the pardon of Lieut.
Smith, the convict, who had cohabited with Mrs. Carson, and taken
possession of her house and property, during the absence of her
husband, Captain Carson. When the latter returned and demanded his wife
and property, he was shot dead in his own house by Smith. The governor
had intelligence of the plot, and seized the conspirators before they
could carry their design into effect.

_Sunday, 21st._--Quitted Philadelphia on board the steam-boat. A
gentleman, Lieut. Skinner, of {422} the United States' navy, from the
Franklin, just arrived from Gibraltar, states, that the sailors, on
settling accounts, will go on shore and spend the balance, several
hundred dollars, in two or three days, lavishing from 100 to 200 dollars
a-day, until all is gone, when they re-enter. So indifferent are they to
the use and value of money, that they give it away, and suffer any
person to plunder them with impunity. The cause, says he, of this
indifference and insane extravagance, is to be found in the strictness
and severity of the discipline on board, where money is of no use to

_Duelling._--So frequent were these meetings between the officers of the
United States' navy and the British garrison, that the governor felt
compelled to interfere, in order to save life, as one or two duels
occurred daily, originating in the most foolish disputes.

The parties met always on neutral ground. For any expression uttered by
one officer of the 64th regiment, a general challenge was sent by the
officers of the United States' navy to the regiment; wishing to include
_all_, from the colonel down to the lowest in rank.

Two young Americans, of New York, at Gibraltar, met in consequence of a
trifling dispute. The offending party fired three times without hitting,
while his opponent fired every time into the air, begging the other to
apologize, saying, "If I take aim I shall kill you, but I can stand all
your {423} fires." This concession was, however, obstinately refused; on
which the seconds stepped forward, and said to the party who had acted
so generously, "Sir, you must fire in your own defence!" Both again
charged, and Sands, the aggressor, fell dead. The survivor was arrested,
but acquitted with honour; being told by his commander, that if he had
not acted thus, he would not have received him again into the service.
The young reprobate who fell, was a classical scholar, of fine person
and great mental accomplishments, but ripe for perdition.

_22nd._--I reached Washington city, now emptied of the wise men, and
which, after quitting Philadelphia, seems mean, indeed, both morally and
physically. All the bogs and swamps, in and round the city, are now full
of melody, from the big, bellowing bull frog, down to the little singing
mosquito, while rotting carcases and other nuisances perfume the warm
southern breezes.

A lady, in a letter to Mr. Thomas Coote, from New Orleans, states that
eighteen American pirates under sentence of death, in the jail of that
city, have many friends, much intent upon effecting a rescue, by forcing
the prison, which is strongly guarded by the military. Every night
almost, for this purpose, mobs collect around it and set fire to distant
parts of the city, in order to divert the attention of the guards from
the prison. Great alarm exists on the subject, and it is feared, {424}
that on the day of execution, much blood will be spilt.

One hundred sail of slave-ships, full of slaves, appeared in sight, one
day, during this spring, off the coast of Africa. Several of them were
fast sailing vessels, built, owned, and manned by the free citizens of
free America. Some were chased and taken by the British and American
navy. This trade is now considered to be more extensive than ever.

_30th._--Visited Mr. Dunn, who states that the small red squirrel, of
this state, is seen to seize and castrate, in a moment, the large grey
squirrel, which greatly fears and always flies at the sight of the

Are those English people who are now in America happier than they were
in England? I will take upon me to pronounce, that in the aggregate,
they are not. Happiness and misery are not mere localities, for as God
is the father of all, the earth is his and the fulness thereof; his
frowns or smiles are not bounded by geographical lines and latitudes;
the whole human family are under his wise economy. God's management is
always right. He can blast prosperity and bless disappointment, so as to
keep it from disappointing; thus bringing good out of evil, light out of
darkness, blessings out of curses, and curses out of blessings.
Blessings unblessed are curses in disguise, and adversity blessed is a
blessing. We need his blessing {425} upon every thing, even on his
blessings. I am sometimes disposed to think that the blessings of
American liberty are unblessed.

Mr. Elliott deems universal suffrage, as it exists in America, an
universal evil, because the worst and meanest of mankind, who are the
most numerous every where, are enabled to exert an overwhelming
influence over the good and the honourable. Every man here is a segment
of the government. Mean and evil men seek to represent their like. A
good man cannot descend to the mean mode of popularity; he cannot bribe
with whiskey; he cannot promise what is evil to perform; and therefore
but few good men are in the government. Antipathy to Englishmen, and
whatever they suggest, is general and nearly national.

For the following very interesting, original, and last letter of a
distinguished, yet unfortunate artist, I am indebted to an old
philosophical friend, whose well-judged opinions of and extensive
acquaintance with men and things, make his sentiments precious and
almost oracular. Let him here receive my thanks for the many pleasant
hours which I spent in his company, and for the rich materials of
thinking gathered from him.

                                    _Washington, September 5th, 1820._

    Dear Sir,

    I embrace the opportunity of writing to you by the favour of Mrs.
    Orris. I enclose a letter received {426} from the celebrated
    _Francis Guy_, landscape painter, who lately died at New York. He
    was at the head of his profession in this country, and perhaps in
    the world. He was born near Keswick, in Cumberland, England. I knew
    him well, and esteemed him highly, as well for his virtues as his
    talents. In this letter, (which I believe was the last he wrote, it
    being dated only a few days before his death) you will know the
    opinion of many artists, who have left their country to seek for
    food and fame in this, and see how they are rewarded for the
    exercise of their talents in this great republic of North America.
    _He (Guy) told me that he had not received 50 cents per day for his
    labours!_ You are welcome to any use of this letter.

    Buildings seem to rise very fast, notwithstanding the badness of
    the times, as they are termed.

    Please to favour me with a letter as soon as convenient. I am in
    daily expectation of the nuts, &c. The ground has been ploughed
    some weeks for their reception. I am in good health, but my
    mother, my wife, my brother, his wife, and oldest child are all
    very sick.

    Please accept my best wishes for your welfare. The club also wish
    to be remembered to you.

                                                      Your Old Friend.

To Mr. Faux.

                                        {427} _Brooklyn, Long Island_,
                                               _June 29th, 1820._

    My Dear Friend,

    I received yours, with its inclosures, in due time, and it would be
    a difficult thing for me to describe the pleasure I feel at seeing
    such a proof of your continued friendship. There is, indeed, a
    something in a real upright and downright honest John Bull, that
    cannot be found in the sly, say-nothing, smiling, deep speculating,
    money-hunting Jonathans of this
    all-men-are-born-equally-free-and-independent, negro-driving,
    cow-skin republic.

    It is surely wrong to be content with nothing, because not blessed
    with all. We see bad effects, we hate them, and we grumble, but ten
    to one it is because we are unacquainted with the cause from whence
    they spring; but there is one self-evident, hell-born cause of
    endless ills in this land, which, for want of a better name, we
    will call avarice. From Maine to Georgia, on all occasions, the
    general question is, How much shall I get by it? What will it fetch
    me? Pray what benefit will that be to me? &c. &c. From this,
    man-stealing, mail robberies, piracy, murders, thefts, swindling,
    forgeries, lying, cheating, slavery, whips, gags, chains, and all
    the black catalogue of monstrous ills proceed. Indeed, that angel
    who is described by Milton as being more fond of admiring Heaven's
    golden pavement, than any thing glorious aloft, is the ruling god
    of this nation; and in imitation {428} of him, they are for ever
    chasing dollars, walking half bent under the accursed dominion of
    selfish views. But death, the mighty hunter, will catch them all,
    and then, in company with their god Belial, they will enjoy the
    name, title, and privilege of _fools_. There is a national church
    liturgy in England, and if ever there should be one adopted here,
    the following I think ought to form a part of it.

      Money, money, is all our cry,
        Money, the total sum!
      Give us money or else we die;
        O let thy money come!

    But I am rambling from the Capitol. Your son has drawn it very
    well, but I wish he had drawn it on a larger scale, that the order
    of columns and windows might have been more distinct. However, it
    is the wrong side of the building; it is the east front and north
    end that I must paint, looking down towards George-town, and the
    place I sketched the view from was just above your house; therefore
    I must paint the east front and north end. This, like a fool, I
    forgot to inform you of; but if both fronts are to be alike, then
    what you have sent will do; if not, then I will thank both you and
    him to send me another drawing, at least so far as the centre of
    the east front differs from that of the west.

    Since I wrote the above, Mr. King, the painter, has been in this
    place, and informs us that both {429} fronts of the capitol will be
    the same; therefore, if that be so, what you have sent will answer;
    and when I come to your place in the fall, I will reward your son
    for his drawing, or if he choose to make a charge, I will send the
    money by the post, whatever it may be.

    Give my dutiful respects to Dr. Thornton, and tell him that I wish
    he could see the picture of Washington city when it is finished--I
    think it will be a grand sight. I am now painting a large view of
    Chichester, in England, for Governor Clinton; in which his
    likeness, with those of Judge Miller and Doctor Mitchel, are to be
    painted on the fore-ground. I wish the doctor could see this
    paradise scenery also. You talk of coming to York; I wonder if ever
    I shall have the pleasure of seeing you here. In your last, you ask
    if I have any communications to send. Perhaps I may have some to
    send concerning myself, for be assured that if we do not now
    condescend to go out of our old beaten track, we must fall through
    thick and thin. When that should be, it would be no sin to do one
    of the worst things in the world, that is, turn one's own

    God prosper you in all your good ways, keep you from all bad ones,
    and may you live contented, and die happy!

                                                          FRANCIS GUY.

    Thus you see I have written a letter, and on one {430} account or
    another delayed sending it until there is need to write another, to
    make an apology for the neglect. Indeed, my good wife has been very
    unwell, and my concern for her made me forget every thing else.
    This I know you will say is a good and weighty excuse.

                                                                 F. G.

_June 10th._--News of firing the City of New Orleans, in order to effect
a rescue of the pirates, reached this city this day. We hear, also, of
the Choctaw Indians fighting, 150 opposed to 150, to avenge the death of
an old woman, killed for a witch. They fought until both sides, with the
exception of ten or twelve, were all killed.[151]

A man was taken and nearly killed, last week, disguised as the devil, in
the act of extorting 150 dollars from a farmer. He was dressed, and spit
fire and brimstone, like a proper devil. He is now in prison. A Yankee
traveller, lodging for the night, struck this felonious devil to the
ground with a club, at the second visit to receive dollars, instead of
paper, as at first offered by the farmer for the ransom of his body and

_12th._--I met again Mr. Perry from Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He states
that the land and farms there are the best in America; the average of
wheat being about eighteen bushels an acre. The best land is to be
bought occasionally at fifty dollars an acre, with improvements which
have cost all the money; so that the land is given. {431} Here, he says,
an English farmer may, as a farmer, find much animal comfort, but no
good society; the mass of the farmers and people being vile, dishonest,
and without any good principles whatever. All try to rob and wrong you,
and each other, and will do it if you associate, or deal in any way with
them; and they will do it without any shame, being shameless. An honest
man, though rich, must be soon ruined, if he puts confidence in them.
"All are tarred with the same brush." The farmers all work. One, worth
ten or twelve thousand dollars, brought in to Mr. Perry a waggon load of
hay, which he warranted was a ton, though it was only sixteen cwt. Out
of a farm of good land, consisting of 500 acres, a farmer does not find
above 300 dollars a-year for the purchase of such necessaries as the
family need from the store. No money is, therefore, to be made by
farming, and the poor live in want all winter, at which time their
labour is to be had for victuals only, and now for 25 cents a-day. From
sober calculation, he finds that four per cent. is the most that can be
obtained from capital employed in agriculture, though six per cent, is
the legal interest. He would, a thousand times, rather give five or six
guineas an acre rent, for land at Feversham in Kent, than have it here
rent-free; for, after paying this heavy rent and taxes and labour, he
should have a good living profit in England, where the climate is good,
but here, one year {432} wears you out more that seven in England.
Grasshoppers too, here, are a plague, destroying every thing, in the
pestilential months of August and September. There is no money; all is
done by barter.

He would recommend me and others to stick by England while we can live
in it, for he is sure, that if people in England would attend to their
duties, and condescend to the meannesses and drudgeries every where
practised here, they must live, and live better at home than ever they
can here. And besides, though things are bad, there is a hope of better
times. Here, there is no hope; things will be worse; for, with such an
unprincipled, vile race of people, how is it possible that liberty and
happiness can be secure? They know nothing of the nature of liberty, nor
want to know. Law, justice, equity, liberty, are things unknown amongst
them. In England, there is a good sound core, and seed that must always
vegetate; here, all is rottenness. Mr. Perry believes, that grazing
cattle in Pennsylvania, would pay much better than cultivating.

_18th._--I re-visited Dr. Dawes's farm, which being in a state of
complete exhaustion, is unable to produce again even the seed of any
thing sown; the rye not affording what is commonly scattered for
gleaners in England, while the peas, tares, and lentils rise not a foot
high. This land can only be restored to fruitfulness by rest, clover,
plaster, {433} and manure, and plenty of cattle and sheep to depasture
and manure it.

_19th._--This being a beautiful morning, the Doctor ordered out his
curricle, and we drove to the seat and plantation of the Right
Honourable T. Law, accompanied by Mr. Joel Simpson. I having been
introduced to Mr. Law, was appointed spokesman, and stood rapping at the
hall of entrance ten minutes before I was heard. At last came a naked,
dirty-legged, bare-footed little girl, to say that Mr. Law was not at
home, nor likely to be before night. Soon after, came her father, the
overseer, who "regretted that Mr. Law was absent at an agricultural
dinner, as he was happy to see all callers." He, at my request, shewed
us the garden, the farm, and the stock. The farm, about 250 acres, is
beautifully situated on high hills, two miles from the Potowmac, but so
stony and unfruitful, that its cultivation is a serious expense, rather
than a benefit, it being unable to maintain itself. The garden and
orchard, a few acres, seem equally poor; small quantities of its produce
are, however, sent from it occasionally to market. At the bottom of it
is a spa, or mineral spring, in which the proprietor bathes. The horses
are all poor and fleshless, but the cattle and cows, about twelve in
number, fat. A cow and a bull of the Yorkshire breed, from England,
dislike (says the man) this climate. {434} The cow gives but little
milk, and pines for the sweet, green pastures of her dear native land.

The English labourers, sent over to this farm, are all gone, being
drunken and worthless, and withal, so uncivil and conceited, that Mr.
Law, who likes men to talk freely with him, could scarcely get a civil
answer from any of them. We were at last conducted into the house, and
introduced to a pint of whiskey. We saw no house-servants, but heard
one, a female slave recently bought, the only slave Mr. Law owns. He
lives in great simplicity. The house is better than the best American
farm-houses; still, it is not a mansion, but rather something between
both. In the centre and front, is a large oblong room, the largest in
the house, and resembling a hall of entrance, at each end of which is a
smaller room for the winter, and on the other side, being a double
house, are three small summer rooms, and chambers over the whole. The
road through the farm up to the house is serpentine, and planted with
dying shrubs. It is rough, stony, and difficult of ascent, and the
entrance-gate (where might stand a porter's lodge) is meaner than a
hog-pen-gate. In this retreat dined the President and 200 gentlemen last
week. The society admitted here is select, and the principal attraction
to it is Mr. Law, who is kind, agreeable, and benevolent to all. In his
personal appearance, he is small, lean, {435} withered, and rustic. His
nose, however, is noble, like Lord Ellenborough's, but his mind is
perhaps nobler than that of any of the family, although he lives in
greater simplicity than a country squire of England.

_21st._--An old Scotsman, a perfect stranger, this morning
conscientiously brought back cloth to Mr. ----'s store, to be
re-measured, the same containing, he found, several yards more than he
had paid for, or expected to find. A mistake had occurred in measuring.
An American lady of respectability, also of this city, was standing by,
and, in the greatest astonishment, exclaimed: "What! bring it back
because there is too much measure? Well, who ever heard the like? I
would not have done so, I'll warrant ye." "O, my dear madam," said he,
"I could not, would not, have it without paying for it; it is not mine."
The proprietor of the store observed, very significantly, looking her
ladyship in the face, "Madam, I know of only one rule, and that is, to
do unto others as you would that they should do unto you." She blushed,
and said no more. This shameless, unprincipled, selfishness is very
universal. It is customary, with this people, never to point out
defects in goods, or errors in accounts, when such defects and errors
exist in their favour. The qualities, honesty and dishonesty, as
exemplified in these two characters, seemed as if they were natural.

{436} _23rd._--The mayor of this city, Samuel N. Smallwood, Esq. now
mayor for the second time, came here, twenty years ago, a pennyless
mechanic, but being industrious, grew with the growth, and strengthened
with the strength, of this infant metropolis. His mother was a yellow
woman, and his origin is still distinguishable in his curled hair, which
he keeps close shorn. This, further south, would have been a sin never
to be forgiven. He is a man of talent, and lives much respected.

This day I passed a pleasant farm on the eastern branch of the Potowmac,
half of it bottom land, and running a mile and a half along the shore,
with a good house and offices, orchards, and large gardens. The hills
are poor, and covered with woods, amongst which cattle and pigs graze,
and breed, and fatten. It contains 667 acres, to be bought at sixty
dollars an acre, works twenty, and might work thirty negroes, worth
9,000 dollars. It requires an additional capital of 6,000 or 7,000
dollars, for cultivating. Although much of this pleasant plantation is
in wood, yet it is said to produce annually,

  {437} Of Tobacco,                          3,000
  Corn and grain,                            3,000
  Garden-stuff,                              3,000
  Cattle and pigs, bred and fed,             2,000
  Rent of fishery,                             500
  Butter,                                    1,000
  If the fishery were fished by the owner,
      it would make additional               1,000

Thus is a capital of 55,000 dollars employed, netting twelve per cent.,
but the authority relied upon, in thus stating the case, is not the

The Patriot pilot-boat, last war, sailed from New York to Charleston
city, for the Governor of South Carolina's Lady, Mrs. Allstone, Mr.
Burr's daughter,[152] then at Charleston, who, with Mr. Green, her
brother-in-law, and servant, plate and specie, sailed from Charleston.
They were heard of no more, until last month, when one of the pirates,
under sentence of death at New Orleans, confessed that he and others, of
the crew of the Patriot, rose upon the captain and the passengers,
confined them below, scuttled the vessel, and abandoned her, taking to
the boat, in which, with all the money and plate they could find, they
{438} landed on the coast of North Carolina, while the vessel, and all
it contained, sunk to rise no more.

_30th._--I re-visited the seat of Mr. Law, in company with Mr. Elliott,
and the Rev. J. Wright. Mr. Law was dining out, three miles from home. I
saw him not, but kept possession of the house three hours.

Mr. Law told a friend of mine that he brought 100,000 guineas in gold,
but could not now raise, by any means, at a short notice, 1,000_l._ City
lots and land allured him almost to ruin. Land seems a substance, but is
yet only a shadow in many neighbourhoods.

_A common hot day at Washington._--The wind southerly, like the breath
of an oven; the thermometer vacillating between 90 and 100; the sky blue
and cloudless; the sun shedding a blazing light; the face of the land,
and every thing upon it, save trees, withered, dusty, baked, and
continually heated, insomuch that water would almost hiss on it; the
atmosphere swarming with noxious insects, flies, bugs, mosquitoes, and
grasshoppers, and withal so drying, that all animal and vegetable life
is exposed to a continual process of exhaustion. The breezes, if any,
are perfumed by nuisances of all sorts, emptied into the streets,
rotting carcases, and the exhalations of dismal swamps, made vocal and
alive with toads, lizards, and bellowing bull-frogs. Few people are
stirring, except negroes; all faces, save those {439} of blacks, pale,
languid, and lengthened with lassitude, expressive of any thing but ease
and happiness. Now and then an emigrant or two fall dead at the cold
spring, or fountain; others are lying on the floor, flat on their backs;
all, whether idle or employed, are comfortless, being in an everlasting
steam-bath, and feeling offensive to themselves and others. At table,
pleased with nothing, because both vegetable and animal food is
generally withered, toughened, and tainted; the beverage, tea or coffee,
contains dead flies; the beds and bed-rooms, at night, present a
smothering unaltering warmth, the walls being thoroughly heated, and
being withinside like the outside of an oven in continual use. Hard is
the lot of him who bears the heat and burthen of this day, and pitiable
the fate of the poor emigrant sighing in vain for comforts, cool
breezes, wholesome diet, and the old friends of his native land. At
midnight, the lightning-bugs and bull-frogs become luminous and
melodious. The flies seem an Egyptian plague, and get mortised into the
oily butter, which holds them like birdlime.

Having requested some communication on the subject of farming, and other
matters, in Pennsylvania, from a friend, possessing great experience, I
was favoured with the following heads, which contain much information
in a condensed form.

{440} _1st. Pennsylvania._--The land is of the first quality, and the
best farming in the United States is found here. The climate is of a
medium temperature, but the extremes meet as in the other states.

_2nd. Crops._--The average produce is sixteen bushels, per acre, of
wheat; other grain in proportion; but the crops are very subject to the
Hessian fly and mildew.

_3rd. Fruit._--As in the other states, it is inferior to that of Europe,
and no dependence is to be placed on crops.

_4th. Garden._--One acre of land in England, produces more vegetables
than five acres in the United States, taking the year throughout. N.B.
This matter has been most grossly misrepresented.

_5th. Grazing Land._--During five months in the year, there is no
pasture for cattle.

_6th. Price of Land._--Varies from 50 to 100 dollars with improvements,
that is, with a good house and barn.

_7th. Timber._--Sufficient exists at present; but should the population
increase rapidly, it will become a scarce article.

_8th. Game._--Scarce; which is generally the case through the States. No
country in the world is worse supplied with game, and in a few years the
game will be entirely annihilated, owing to the extreme inclemency of
the winters, and there being no cover for them in the woods.

{441} _9th. Fish._--Taking the States through, the supply of this
article is trifling.

_10th. Farmers._--The generality of this class are Germans of the lowest
grade; industrious, but nothing further, and forming no society for an
English yeoman. The rest of the population is composed of descendants
of the old settlers and of low people of Irish origin.

_11th. Residence._--An emigrant requires at the least twelve months.
N.B. The United States teem with jobbing lawyers, land speculators, and

_12th. Grazing and stall-feeding cattle for market._--This line might be
followed to advantage with a capital of 4,000 dollars, and with what is
of more consequence, the knowledge of dealing or trafficking, for
without such knowledge the noble would soon be reduced to nine-pence. A
twelve months' residence is, therefore, indispensably necessary, for
without being fully initiated in the diabolical arts of _lying out_,
_swearing out_, _swindling out_, and _thieving out_, ruin is inevitable.

_13th. Society._--There is none for an Englishman of the old school, who
would scorn to tell a lie, or see his fellow man in want.

_14th. Happiness._--Must be found in your own family; the fruits of your
farm will supply every want, and whilst the government of the United
States continues as at present, you will be secured in that happiness.

{442} _15th._--One matter I had almost forgot, which I must not omit to
mention, as you most likely will be asked questions on the subject by
many of that most useful and invaluable class, English husbandmen.

_1st. Wages._--The highest wages given at this time for _harvest_ are,
2_s._ 3_d._ per day, English money, and found in provision and bad

_2nd. Working hours._--From sunrise to sunset, full sixteen hours.

_3d. How long does the harvest last?_--About three weeks.

_4th. Is it warm in harvest time?_--Excessively so. The thermometer
ranges from 86 to 120. It is impossible to have a just idea of it
without actual experience. And, what is of more consequence, an English
husbandman would be more _debilitated_ in _three years_ in the United
States, than in _sixteen years_ in England.

_5th. How long in the year can labour be procured?_--About six months.

_6th. Are wages paid regularly?_--Very rarely. Mostly defrauded.

_7th. Then who are the persons that can do?_--A man with a family of
hard-working children, possessing 300_l._ sterling, and who should
reside twelve months in the States before he purchases land. And it is
greatly to be feared that both the emigrant and his family must lay in
all the low cunning, and [l]earn to defraud and cheat, as practised
{443} here, and entirely forget old English principles and society, or
else ruin and misery will be his portion.

_8th. Mechanics._--Any part of the world before the United States, for,
whatever they may earn, they will be sure to be defrauded out of half.

_9th. Wages._--Not so much as in England, taking the year through.

_July 6th._--Visited the house of the President, a good, substantial,
pleasant abode, but neither so elegant, superb, nor costly as the seats
of our nobility. I saw nothing about it remarkable; no pictures, save
Washington's; no curiosities, no painted ceilings. The walls are covered
with French paper, and the rooms are furnished with French furniture.
Its front looks over the Potowmac and Alexandria, down to Mount Vernon,
through a vast extent of Southern Virginian scenery. A favourite English
butler shewed us all, and regaled us with good biscuit, brandy, and

_7th._--This morning the Hon. Thomas Law, accompanied by Mr. Elliott,
made me a call in return for mine. He very politely regretted his
absence when I called, and invited me to come and spend a day or two
with him at his farm, for the purpose of concluding the conversation now
commenced in the following words.

_Mr. Law._--"You, Mr. F., saw my farm and garden. They are poor, but I
will improve the gravelly hills by carting earth on to them from the
{444} valleys. The English labourers sent to me by Mr. Curwen, I have
dismissed. They could do nothing but plough; they were stupid,
conceited, uncivil, and latterly drunken; whiskey, and the company they
met, seduced them. When I began farming I knew not wheat from rye, or
rye from barley; but I well know what are the benefits of farming."
"You, Sir, pursue it only for your pleasure?" "No, Sir, I want profit."
"In the present distressed state of agriculture little profit is to be
had." "Truly so; but a paper circulation is wanted. Mr. Crawford fully
agreed with me on this point, but disingenuously seceded from it in his
report, on which account I have addressed several pointed letters to
him, which I will send you as well as my address to the agricultural
society of Prince George's county."

"On my return home shall I advise and recommend my countrymen to
emigrate here?" "Why, Sir, I cannot answer that question. I have never
recommended emigration, nor caused any to quit their country; every
thing is strange and unsuitable to English farmers and labourers; he can
cultivate with success only by slaves." "Have you, Mr. Law, no regrets
at having spent so much of your time in this country?" "No, Sir, none
whatever." "What, Sir, none at the loss of that society which you must
have had in common with your family in England?" Here Mr. Law hesitated
a little as if at a loss for an answer. "Why, {445} Sir, I once with
Lord Cornwallis governed India. I returned and saw my acquaintance
sliding into commerce, brewers, manufacturers, and merchants, to be
cheated; such a course had no attractions for me, and I was opposed to
the French war and other government measures. I therefore determined on
visiting and ultimately on living in this country, where I have spent my
time much to my satisfaction, never being at a loss for amusement. I
write and read, and talk and visit, on the most familiar and friendly
terms with my neighbours, with whom I frequently stay all night; and
whenever I please, I can without ceremony go and talk frequently and
freely with the President, Mr. Crawford, Calhoun, and all the heads of
the government, and therefore I have the best society the land affords."
"But, Sir, there are the honours and emoluments of England which _must_
have been yours." "My wants were then, and have always been, very few. I
believe I have always been happier than any of my brothers. As I never
knew how to say 'My lord' to any man, I did not seek or want honours or
emoluments. I saw my family and friends dependant on the funds which are
likely some day to beggar them and many others; a situation from which I
fled." "What, Mr. Law, is likely to remedy the diseases of England?"
"Sir! England is over-peopled. It is not wholly the fault of the
government. A famine will be the remedy." "Could not the surplus
population {446} be transported to the colonies?" "No, Sir. A famine is
the only remedy." "But, Sir, is not a famine calculated to plunge the
country into a dreadful political convulsion and revolution?" "It is,
Sir, but the government is not blameable."

"Morally considered, or with respect to morals, do you not think the
population of this country inferior to that of England?" "The people in
the mass are here more intelligent. You now see them at the worst time.
You see them _generally_ acting unworthily and meanly, but their poverty
and not their will consents. As to slaves, they steal." "And they have a
right to steal," said a third person. I answered, "They, to be sure,
have been robbed on a broad scale." "Why, Sir, the friends of slavery
insist on it that slavery is essential to the existence of liberty. To
what conclusions will they not come?"

"Is there, Mr. Law, no aristocratical feeling in this country?" "Yes,
Sir, amongst the black population." "You mean, Sir, amongst the masters
of blacks?" "Yes, Sir. You, Sir, have visited Mr. Birkbeck?" "I have."
"Is he not a very pleasant, intelligent man?" "He is highly so." "What
is he doing?" "Fast spending dollars." "Had he raised any produce?"
"None." "Why?" "He had been, he said, occupied in settling his
neighbours, who together with himself have been supplied with provisions
from Harmony at 100 per cent, above their value; but cheaper, they have
{447} said, than they could have then and there raised them." "I, Sir,
do not approve of going into the wilderness away from market and
society, while land is to be had with both. What is Harmony?" "It is a
most flourishing settlement, and indeed the only flourishing one I saw
in the wilderness. What think you, Mr. Law, of the climate?" "Why, Sir,
as Lloyd says,

  "With things at once so hot and cold,
  I can no friendship hold."

Mr. Law talks in an oratorical manner, and with an energy of action
which makes him appear much in earnest. He is full to overflowing, and
quite inexhaustible. "His worth," says Mr. Elliott, "is not one-tenth of
it known, but is thrown away upon this country."

"It is said, Sir, that the population of this country is systematically
unprincipled, and almost without virtue." "That, Sir, is not true. In
the cities, since the commercial distress, the people seem dishonest.
The commercial demand from England, and the withdrawing a paper capital
by this government, have driven the people to desperation. They are
unjustly done by. They were once esteemed good customers. A circulating
medium only is wanted to heal the breach. In the country the people are
anxious to meet their engagements." "Do you, Sir, think that no remedy
but famine remains for England?" "No, Sir! no other." "Then the sooner
it comes the better." "But, Sir, (said he) {448} such confusion, and
horror, and calamity, will characterize the catastrophe as the world has
not seen." "Do you think it will exceed the French revolution? Will the
people of England be more bloody and heartless in such a struggle than
the French?" "The desperation of their situation will make them so.
Consider, Sir, the rage, anguish, and collision of so many starving
millions, screwed up into a space not larger than our state of Virginia.
Here, Sir, we have plenty, and whether sleeping or waking are safe in
our houses, and liberty and prosperity are secure. You, I find, are
deputed to collect information. Dine with me on Monday, and I will get
my sons out to meet you."

Mr. Law finding that I wished a protection or special passport from the
British minister, Mr. Antrobus, went and applied for it, but did not
succeed, it should seem, because I was acquainted with ---- on the black
books of the government. "Mr. C.," said Mr. Law, "is a very intelligent
man, but I find he carried things with a high, offensive hand in
England. He, I believe, Sir, wrote the Watchman and alarmed the church
and the Bishop of Ely."

Mr. Law seems not to like the radicals. "When," says he, "I came to this
country from India, it seemed at first like going down to the grave. I
seemed buried. Tell my family that I drink daily rye-coffee and

{449} Recipe for making rye-coffee, equal to the West Indian, after Mr.
Law's fashion. Swell the rye in warm water before you roast it.

_8th._--I received the following letter from Mr. Law.

                                           _Saturday, 8th July, 1820._


    I wish you, if you see Mr. Elliott of the Patent-office, to desire
    him to come and dine on Monday. If you can visit me early, I will
    shew you the neighbourhood, and in conversation you may obtain
    whatever opinions I have formed from experience respecting this
    country. It is most desirable that correct information should be
    given to those who are necessitated to seek an asylum here.

    An European ought not to travel far into the interior, as he must
    sacrifice every comfort during life. Want of society, want of
    hands, want of a market, want of medical aid; in short, almost
    every want is experienced for many years; discontent soon destroys
    the harmony of associates, and former attachments to those left
    behind have double power to excite regrets.

    The Americans are a migrating race, and quit their farms to seek
    rich back lands; but more of this when I have the pleasure to see

                                 Yours most obediently,
                                                               T. LAW.

_Sunday, 9th._--By appointment, I breakfasted with Major Young, 45 years
from Ireland, and {450} from the first an enthusiast in the cause of
America, throughout the revolution up to this time, having been the
companion in arms of General Washington, and appointed to the honour of
delivering Lord Cornwallis his discharge from his parole of honour. His
lordship graciously received it from the Major at his house in London,
much pleased that he was not compelled to return to America to discharge
his parole, having been exchanged for Mr. Laurens in the Tower. "Major,"
said his lordship, "I feel obliged to you and others, and will hold
myself under obligation to serve you at any time." The Major gave him an
opportunity, and was served. Mr. Laurens, while in the tower, was
consulted by a friend of Lord Hillsborough, the minister, on this
question: "What, Mr. Laurens, would you, as a friend to America, advise
England to do at the present juncture." "Why, Sir, the experience of
ages proves that an ounce of honey is worth a ton of vinegar." His
lordship on hearing this, in great rage rejoined, "America has had too
much honey; she shall have more vinegar."

Mr. John Law, during the attack on Washington, served in the United
States' army as a sergeant; but after the British got possession, he
laid aside his uniform, and telling the British officers that he was the
nephew of Lord Ellenborough, invited them to his house, where they spent
a joyful evening together.

{451} _10th._--By Mr. Elliott, I was introduced to Major Roberts, at the
public department of engineers.[153] I was accompanied by Mr. John and
Mr. Edmund Law, two natives of Asia, to the seat of their father to
dinner, where we met Mr. Carter, Mr. Elliott, Colonel Heb, and his
friend, a Cantab. Our dinner consisted of lamb, ham and chicken, and
blackberry pie, with claret, brandy, and whiskey, the latter 15 years
old. Here was all ease and no ceremony. Every guest seemed as free as if
at home, and eat, drank, and talked as he pleased. As this dinner was on
my account, Mr. Law placed me on his right hand as his guest. The two
Asiatic sons of Mr. Law seem generous, kind-hearted, and most
intelligent young gentlemen, free from all aristocratic pride.

Mr. John Law, during our ride to dinner, observed that his father's
objection to slavery was rooted in mere prejudice, because, though he
might buy slaves, he could emancipate them when he pleased. I told Mr.
Law, their father, what they said of this prejudice. "Aye," said he,
"call it what they please, I am acting from a good and proper motive.
Wherever there are blacks, the white population is seen to decrease. The
blacks will free themselves in the south; their resistance and
insurrection will be horrid and irresistible; the free states will never
stir an inch to oppose the blacks or to assist the planters, who have no
feelings in common with the farmers and {452} people of free states. The
former oppose domestic manufactures, because they think England can give
them more for produce than their countrymen, and therefore they are
willing that their countrymen should be drained of money for the support
of British manufactures."

Free blacks, in all the above states, are an especial nuisance, because
they are deemed the cause of insurrection amongst slaves, and act as
brokers to them, or receivers of whatever the slaves steal.

Birkbeck and Flower became the theme of the evening. Mr. Law, and all
present, regretted that they did not settle in this, or some populous
neighbourhood, where they might have lived as the most distinguished
citizens, and at a much less cost than now. They might have visited and
been visited by the President, and all the heads of departments; had a
town and country house, plenty of land, increasing in value, and good
markets; plenty of comforts of all kinds; farms, houses, orchards,
gardens, and every convenience formed to their hands, at less than the
cost of improvements, so that the land is a gift into the bargain. What
madness to go into the wilderness! Their land is not advanced in value
by their mere residence on it. They might have invested money, on land,
in the best western neighbourhoods, and, without sacrificing themselves,
their posterity would have reaped the benefit, which must be slow, but
which is sure to come with population and population only. {453} They
thought that land must increase in value in the west, forgetting that
there was an infinite supply at the same price; and, besides, how could
they be sure that settlers would follow and give an advance. It was
madness so to spend this short life. They ought to have known that
working Yankee families, who do all the labour themselves, are the only
proper pioneers. Gentlemen-farmers should not remove into the west,
until they can live and do better there than here. At any rate it is
time enough to go when they can be the third or fourth buyers of farms;
when they can have the improvements at less than the cost, and the land
nearly into the bargain. Society and visiting, so indispensable to such
intelligent Englishmen, they might here have cheaply. "I entertained
(continued Mr. Law) the President and heads of departments, and 100
friends besides, to dinner, at this house, on such a dinner, as we have
had to-day, and a little light wine, and the cost of all was only 40
dollars. My good neighbours, it is true, sent me hams and rounds of
beef, ready cooked, because they thought I should find it difficult to
cook for so many. If I were in England, I must have my Lord ----, and
others of the same rank; all must be splendid, costly, and pompous; but
all this is not the hospitality which I like and find here. Here we go
and come, as, and when we please; no previous notice is necessary; {454}
we give and take freely of such things as we have, and no one is
inconvenienced. In England a house is alarmed by the arrival of an
unexpected visitor. As neighbours and visitors we are all equal, and
share good things in common."

We walked through the large garden, where Mr. Law boasted that he should
have 2,000 celery plants for market at 12-1/2 cents each. All farmers
send their garden produce three times a week to market. "What I send
(says Mr. Law) pays the expense of the gardener, and puts 100 dollars
into my pocket, exclusive of my butter, which furnishes me with
butcher's meat, &c. My farm, at present, does not, but it will, more
than support my establishment."

He has two women, one white, one black, two or three negro children, and
five or six labourers hired at from eight dollars to twelve dollars per
month, most of whom are to leave in winter.

At eight o'clock the company departed, except myself. Mr. Law pressed me
to stay and spend a day or two longer, so that we might visit Colonel
Heb next day, and see the neighbourhood.

We were seated together alone, on the lawn, in the cool of the evening,
until ten o'clock, when Mr. Law, with a light in his hand, kindly
conducted me to my bed-room. During these two hours we talked freely;
first, on the state of England, which, he says, must fall in a few
years. "With {455} such a debt, and so many drones, and having all the
world rivalling and excluding British manufactures, and with such a
superabundant population, it is impossible that she can long exist in
her present condition. A famine must certainly sweep away superfluous
millions. It will be brought about, first, by a scarce year, and
secondly, by the want of specie to pay for foreign grain; for specie
only will do, when manufactures shall not be wanted in exchange for
grain. Then the British people, instead of lying down and dying
willingly like the Hindoos, a scene which I witnessed, will rise with an
irresistible fury, sweeping all authorities before them." "After such a
storm, will they dispense with monarchy, &c.?" "No, Sir, I think not.
King, lords, and commons, seem acceptable to the people. The church and
the debt only will be annihilated. My friends and others in the funds
see that this catastrophe is coming. They are therefore unhappy. I see
they are eaten up by anxiety; I am happier than any of them. Many of the
rich, and several of my friends and family, live on the European
continent, to spend their money in ease and peace. They are all unhappy
in their prospects. It is true that I have been unsuccessful in my
speculations here, but my wants are few. I was advised by General
Washington to invest my money in and about this city, which every one
then deemed a good speculation, and it would have been so but for the
stupidity and blundering {456} ignorance of this government, which by
diminishing the currency, has reduced our estates 50 or 60 per cent.
and rendered all unsaleable. There is no money for use. It is impossible
that a people can flourish without a circulating medium; a floating
capital, which creates a fixed capital. This government, however, will
see the need of it and resort to it; for, if the capital once in
circulation had remained so, the public lands would have doubled their
present value, and the industrious have flourished instead of sinking
into ruin. The poor and industrious are the only proper objects of the
care and protection of government." "You knew Paley. What think you of
his philosophy, &c.?" "I knew him well; he was a good man, but his
philosophy is false. Utility is made its basis; but impulse and feeling
furnish the best moral guide. Every feeling in man points him to
goodness." "But, Sir," said I, "is not his philosophy in accordance with
Christianity?" "Perhaps it is." I rejoined that I could not help
revering it, and that after reading it I thought myself both wiser and
better. "That may be." "You knew and esteemed Sir Wm. Jones in India.
Was he not a Christian?" "Why sir, Lord Teignmouth has endeavoured to
make him appear so; but he was a free thinker, and unusually vain.
Instead of studying his duties and introducing good laws, he was
ambitious of learning all languages, and of being a finished antiquarian
and poet. He fell a victim to his intense {457} application. He would
never travel, except by night; the sun must not see him. He once
travelled through my district by night, and I accompanied him. At sunset
he would inquire: 'Is my enemy down?' If answered, 'Yes,' he would then

"Did you see M. Volney,[154] during his tour in this country?" "I did;
he came, introduced to me by General Washington, and spent some days
with me; he spoke our language well, and was a very wise man."

_11th._--Mr. Law and myself rose about sunrise. I walked, while he was
engaged in writing some materials or arguments for my journal. He writes
with great velocity.

After breakfast we rode to the pleasant farm of Colonel Heb to dine,
where, with his lady and family, we met a young Cantab, and his lady,
who sweetly sung and played for Mr. Law on the piano, with which he
seemed enraptured.

We then viewed the Colonel's estate, consisting of 600 acres, of hill
and dale, 90 of which are meadow irrigated, and which produces 2,000
dollars in hay annually, while the tobacco[155] crop is {458} commonly
worth from 100 to 150 dollars an acre. Here is a marl bank, by which the
Colonel has improved the estate, which, including its first cost,
employs 20,000 dollars, and nets, from 12 to 15 per cent. It is
cultivated by from 12 to 20 negroes, who seem happy and well treated,
singing and working merrily. The Colonel thinks slaves are better off
than free-men. All slave-holders think so, especially those idle men who
keep them merely for hiring out, that they may live entirely by the
labour and breeding of blacks. Free blacks, in a slave state, are most
of them unhappy.

Mr. Law thinks that Colonel Heb saves little or nothing from this
estate, after deducting the expenses of hospitality, education, and
other out-goings. Part of our dessert, at dinner, was strawberries,
which, during the summer, bear fruit continually, each month yielding a
fresh supply. We quitted this hospitable abode at seven, p. m., and, on
reaching home, resumed our conversation till bedtime.

Mr. Law said, that when last in England, he visited his brother, the now
Bishop of Chester, then living on a small benefice, at Kelshall, near
Royston, where all the neighbourhood seemed dissenters. "My brother did
all he could to please them, but they would not come to church. My
brother did not like it, and feared that his congregation would be
reduced to the clerk and his own family. Indeed it seldom was more.
{459} What a nest," said Mr. Law, "is the church for hypocrites. All
churches are evils, especially when they condemn a difference of
opinion, and compel the dissenters therefrom to support the church.
Religion is matter of opinion; all have a right to think freely thereon.
I wonder how my brother got preferment, when I know he was refractory,
and could not submit to the pride and domination of Lord Ellenborough."

"The convulsion in England," says Mr. Law, "will not last long, but it
will be horrid; it will sweep away the drones. I saw my friends spending
their days ingloriously, and descending to the grave, sick of
themselves, and without doing any good to the world.

"My good brother, the Irish Bishop, the most learned of our family, came
from Ireland, purposely to see me. He is now dead. There is no
independence about bishops. They only seek preferment."

Mr. Law repeated to me some satirical lines which he wrote against
the * * *  * * * "These lines his lordship feared should be shown. He
made peace with me and gave up to me. His lordship said, 'I must give
up to Tom, or he will expose me to my brother lawyers, and I shall
become their butt.'" These lines represented the * * *  * * * as the
perfection of pride, and seeking to be Chancellor, being already one
in insolence.

{460} "You have not, I suppose, at any time, directly or indirectly,
formed a part of this government?" "No, Sir, I would see them at the
d--l first." "Is Mr. President Monroe a man of business?" "Yes, Sir. The
Presidents are all slaves to their duties, scarcely able to breathe
abroad or take air." On passing by the Capitol, I said, "Does this
sumptuous Capitol accord with the plainness of republicanism?" "No, Sir,
but laying stones one upon another rarely injures any nation; and
besides, republics are vain, and public buildings gratify their vanity,
and attach them to the country. Inasmuch (said Mr. Law) as this
government has left unprotected the manufacturers of the country, and
withdrawn the circulating medium from the people generally, it has done
all which an enemy to this or any country could do, or wish to see
done." I asked Mr. Law if it was worth while to visit Mount Vernon. He
said, "Mount Vernon is inviting, but Judge W. knows nothing."

_12th._--In our ride to the city this morning, with a negro behind us,
two gentlemen, Mr. Law's neighbours, overtook us, but being anxious to
get on before us, apologized for leaving us. "Oh! gentlemen!" said
Mr. L., "we do not want you to wait for us. Go, I pray you, to the devil
if you will!"

At parting with Mr. Law this morning, he promised to send me letters of
introduction to his {461} Right Rev. Brother, the Bishop of Chester, and
his distinguished cousin, J. C. Curwen, Esq. M. P. which letters,
together with the following curious observations, purposely written by
him for the use of this journal, were soon after transmitted to me.

_Observations by Mr. Law._--"I have lately perused an address to the
public from the delegation of the United Agricultural Society of
Virginia. If, after repeated perusals, I had been convinced that the
exclusion of such foreign manufactures as we can make ourselves, by
legislative measures, such as high duties or prohibitions, would be
injurious to agriculturists, I should immediately acknowledge my
acquiescence in their reasoning. To oppose the opinions and arguments of
such able men, and of such united members, exposes any one to the
imputation of vanity, and to inevitable ridicule, should his reasoning
prove inconclusive. I have always been an advocate for permitting men to
pursue their interests unobstructed by governmental interference,
according to the suggestions of their reason, and to seek future
salvation according to the dictates of their conscience; and I have
always been convinced that men will employ their capitals and industry
in that business which produces most profit. This is, indeed, an
incontrovertible axiom in political economy; and the only question to
determine, is whether the exclusion of foreign manufactures be {462} not
a salutary exception to the rule. The delegation above mentioned,
accuses the petitioning manufacturers of soliciting a monopoly. A
monopoly, according to my definition of the term, means an exclusive
privilege in favour of an individual, or a certain class of men, in
preference to all others, who are injured thereby. Now to me it appears
that the duties or prohibitions solicited, are solely for the
encouragement of domestic manufactures, and for the discouragement of
foreign ones; nay, in my opinion, it seems a request in the name of all
Americans, to be shielded from foreign monopoly. This observation will
at first surprise you, but after my explanation it will, I trust, have
more verisimilitude in it than you can now imagine. Suppose a sovereign
to say that in a certain county, or department, he would make a donation
of capital for building machinery, &c. to those who would establish a
certain manufacture. Should any other of his subjects attempt rivalship,
with his, or their own funds, could not those, who had their capitals
gratis, undersell the competitor or competitors? Say that the buildings
and machinery cost 100,000 dollars, and that 50,000 dollars, current
capital, were required to pay workmen, and buy materials. The former
aided by the sovereign, if they made ten per cent. on their current
capital, would receive 5,000 dollars per annum, but the latter, if he
obtained only a {463} profit of 5,000 dollars on his 150,000 dollars
laid out, would only receive three and a third per cent. Now the foreign
manufacturer has a capital from his father, which is useless to him, if
not employed. Say his buildings, machinery, and 50,000 dollars current
capital, produce him 15,000 dollars. If he finds foreigners, who
heretofore purchased from him, attempting to set up for themselves, will
it not be good policy in him to reduce his profits two thirds, to ruin
his incipient rivals? Mr. Brougham, in the House of Commons, used the
following language, when speaking of the loss to merchants by an
excessive exportation of manufactures:--_it was worth while to incur a
loss, in order, by the glut, to stifle in the cradle those rising
manufactures in the United States, which the war had forced into
existence, contrary to the natural course of things_.

"Would it not have been humane and judicious in Congress, to have
prevented this ruinous glut, which contributed, with the order to resume
specie payments, to crush our manufactures, merchants, and storekeepers,
and to injure our farmers, &c.? How have foreigners obtained above
30,000,000 of our stocks, but by manufactures? The importation of
manufactures is now much diminished, and manufactures are rising, and
the price of labour falling. Will, however, any prudent man commence
manufacturing till shielded {464} from a glut? Our manufactures, till
then, cannot prosper, and we must remain dependent on foreigners. If all
men relied upon handicraft, as formerly, then the general rule, before
alluded to, would apply, and we might be supplied by home-spun. Were all
patriots, the nation would prefer home-spun, if even a little dearer
than foreign articles of a similar kind; but, as many will prefer their
own to the general interest, the general government must, in respect to
foreign commerce, interfere. The farmer in England obtains from 8_s._ to
10s. a bushel for his wheat; our farmers obtain 4_s._ 6_d._; the
manufactures in England amount to about 100,000,000_l._ sterling; ours,
to less than that amount in dollars.

"The distress occasioned by the sudden reduction of our circulating
medium from 100,000,000 dollars, to 45,000,000 dollars, has reduced all
property far below its intrinsic value; the banks are prosecuting to
recover sums loaned, mortgages are foreclosed, and landholders in debt
are compelled to sell. When an European purchases land in the western
countries, he has to clear and fence, and to build house and barn and
stable, at a great expense. In the old states, as they are termed, the
land is sold at so much per acre, and the house, barn, &c. are thrown
into the bargain. Land, from four to eight miles from this city, may be
averaged at twenty dollars an acre, ready to {465} be occupied.
Navigation is near; the market is near; the newspapers, as essential
almost to an Englishman as his breakfast, may be received three times
a-week by market-carts. Society is good; the expense of a long journey,
and a thousand inconveniences experienced by new settlers, are avoided.
Horses and oxen, I believe, can be bought cheaper in this neighbourhood.
If a man wants to remove his family and to sell, he can find purchasers
more readily than in the western wilds. Sickness almost always occurs on
the first exposure of new land to the sun. State taxes and county levies
fall heavily on settlers in a new country, requiring public buildings,
roads, bridges, &c.; labour is dear, and not always attainable.
A New England man succeeds in a new country, because he is a
jack-of-all-trades; he can make his own log-house, mend his cart, &c.
There is an old adage, that "fools build, and wise men purchase."
Suppose 150 acres, purchased in this neighbourhood, at twenty dollars an
acre, making 3,000 dollars, the fencing, and building, and clearing,
would cost at least that sum. When three or four Englishmen wish to
purchase together, they ought to keep it a secret, and to employ some
American, not in high life, who can be confided in, to sound persons
wanting to sell; for if a stranger offers to buy, it is immediately
reported over all the neighbourhood, and prices are raised, and it
exaggerates the value. Americans are remarkably shrewd. {466}
Englishmen, in general, are credulous and sanguine. All bargains ought
to be legally formal, under signature and seal.

"Question. Is great Britain capable of sustaining its national debt for
any length of time?

"There are operating against the possibility of this,

    _1st._--The rivalship of manufactures of other nations, knowledge
    and skill not being an exclusive advantage.

    _2nd._--The encrease of poor-rates, by a superabundant population,
    and reduction of wages.

    _3rd._--The augmentation of payments abroad to British residents,
    who avoid taxation by removing to foreign countries.

    _4th._--The transfer of sums by the timid and enterprizing, who,
    foreseeing embarrassments at home, make purchases abroad of stock
    and lands. The British funds yield less than five per cent.; the
    French and American yield six.

"These four causes, combining against British prosperity, almost
preclude the hope of supporting the immense load of taxes. The army
cannot, with safety, be much diminished, for as discontent increases
with the addition of burthens, the power of the government must be
increased. It is surprising that the "tight little island" prospers as
it does; there cannot be a stronger proof of a good internal management.

"The industrious classes cannot support, in {467} any community, more
than a certain proportion of drones. The important question is whether
the army, navy, state creditors, hierarchy, servants, residents abroad,
tax-gatherers, &c. can be supported by the industrious. The rapid
increase of poor rates, evinces that a nation has arrived at its acme.

"The arrival of monied men in this country, to purchase lands and to
avoid an apprehended convulsion, is ominous of the approaching crisis.
It is painful to forebode misfortune, and an unwelcome task to predict
evil. Could I anticipate improvements similar to those of Arkwright, &c.
to be long exclusively enjoyed, and were there lands still to be
cultivated, to support augmenting population, I could indulge the hope
of liquidating the debt. At present I behold an inverted pyramid,
propped by machinery, which is giving way. Your own journey, your own
inquiries, must make a forcible impression, that present profits are
precarious, and that happiness is alloyed with apprehensions for the

_13th._--During a conversation this day with Dr. Thornton, of the
post-office,[156] he observed that this city, like that of ancient Rome,
was first peopled with thieves and assassins, and that, during his
residence in it, he had found more villains than he had seen in any
other part of the world. When he was a magistrate, such instances of
unblushing villainy and want of principle amongst the people {468} had
come to his view, as he could not suppose existed any where. "There are,
however," said the doctor, "many good men now in it." There is a
disposition generally amongst the citizens to live above their income.
Persons who live as independent gentlemen, often run into debt with
their butchers, &c., to the amount of several hundred dollars, and delay
a year and a half before they attempt to pay, suffering themselves to be
dunned continually, always promising payment, but never being punctual
in performance, and ultimately paying by instalments of five, ten, or
fifteen dollars; a mode of payment from which the meanest man in England
would shrink.

_15th._--I received a farewell visit from Mr. Thompson, late of Boston,
who states that he finds the inducements to emigrate much fewer and
smaller than he expected. Society, as it at present exists, shews great
want of organization, great want of religion, honour, and virtue, and
the country generally seems destitute of English comforts and
advantages. Yet he is now about to make a commercial attempt, by way of
experiment, which, if not successful, he will return into his former
sphere, well content to remain in it, without again wandering five miles
from it. He believes that none of the tables in America afford the
comforts of an English table. He thinks that the government in its
neglect of seminaries entails imperfection on the people. A bitter
sectarian {469} spirit prevails, and is more vicious than in England,
and there is a miserable, petty feeling of aristocracy. It seems to him
that republicanism is suited only for an infant people.

This evening I took my farewell of the claret club, the focus of liberal
principles and of friendly feelings.

_Sunday, 16th._--Accompanied by Mr. Elliot and the Rev. J. Wright, I
drove to Mount Eagle, the hired seat of Ferdinand Fairfax, Esq., on our
way to Mount Vernon. This gentleman, an English lord, gave us an
introductory letter, penned on the top of a post, to the supreme Judge,
Washington, who received us coldly and reluctantly before he read the
letter, and said, "I do not like to see people on this day, but you may
walk round." He then turned away while Mr. Elliot muttered, "We consider
it no act of impiety to visit the tomb of General Washington, and thus
to come on pilgrimage to the shrine of your illustrious ancestor." On
reading the letter his severity relaxed, and he sent two of his servants
to conduct us to the tomb, through the house and gardens, and to point
out whatever was curious. The road, through the estate, leading to the
mansion, is rough and worn into gullies. Every thing bespeaks the
neglect and apathy of the present owner. The land is poor; the estate is
separated on all sides by a rail fence, that is, rails split and
mortised into posts; and the gardens are surrounded {470} with evergreen
cedar fences, all of which are the work of the late General, for whom
every thing here seems to mourn. The house contains nothing curious save
the huge old iron key of the French Bastile, kept in a glass case, and
the recollection of its being once the abode of General Washington.
Instead of carpets, you see Indian matting on the floors. The furniture
is mean and common, and was brought here by Judge Washington.

The exterior of the house is of wood, sanded over, in imitation of
stone. It suffers for want of paint, while bricks seem falling from the
chimneys without being replaced. Here are no pictures of any value. The
only likeness of the late General is cut from a Chinese pitcher! The
grass upon the lawn and garden, in front and rear of the house, is
rotting and seeding down; it is never mown.

The tomb containing the General, and his lady, and brother, and others
of this renowned family, might be mistaken for a dog-kennel, or a mound,
much resembling a potatoe grave in England. It is situated at the
extremity of the garden, and on the brow of a hill. No monument marks
it. Evergreen cedars of Lebanon grow thick upon it, a branch of which is
often stolen as a sacred relique. I bore away one for the king of
England. In like manner did the Russian minister carry one to his
Imperial master, Alexander. No pilgrim is forbidden {471} thus to
pilfer. The tomb is formed by excavating the earth, and then arching it
over with bricks; three feet of earth is then cast on to the arch, which
completely hides every thing but the entrance at one end, through a
door, formed of half inch fir board, now rotting away. Such a door
would disgrace an English pig-stye. Were pigs to range here, they would
soon enter the tomb, which was built by the brother of the late General,
the latter of whom is to sleep here until a national grave is made by
lottery. Graves and cathedrals are raised, in this country, by means of

While seated on this monumental hill, I exclaimed with Gray. "The paths
of glory lead but to the grave." Mr. Elliot replied. "Why, Sir, I look
on my grave, _already made_, with pleasure, and in the same manner as a
weary traveller does to a down bed at the end of a long journey. I
anticipate, with joy, the rest which there awaits me." "Such a feeling,"
said I, "is desirable, but how few the number of those who so feel!"

We were next taken to the green-houses, which in winter, are filled with
all species of choice exotics, from all quarters of the earth, gifts to
the late General. They now stand out in front of the green-house, with
myrtles, oranges, and lemons, ripe, and in great abundance. There are
aloes too of enormous size; plantains, mace, and coffee trees. {472} I
gathered ripe coffee, which is contained in a kind of rich fruit or
berry, of delicious flavor. The pine-apple also bears in the
green-house, but it seemed in a withering state.

The approach to the house is marked by negro huts, and negroes of all
ages, male and female. In the General's time, all was well managed,
particularly the farm and gardens. He, the Cincinnatus of his time, was
up early, and always vigilant. Now all is ruin, and ruin personified
mourns for him.

The Judge is cold and reserved in his manners, and more than commonly
plain in his dress. He seems to be between fifty and sixty years of age,
of small stature, and lean habit of body. His features possess but
little expression, and he is, indeed, as unlike the late General, as any
man in the United States.

After having seen all we wished, we re-entered the house to thank the
Judge, but he appeared no more, simply sending a message that we were
"welcome, and he hoped pleased." He is, we were informed, an amiable,
good man, but of limited knowledge. We appeared, in his esteem, as
sabbath-breakers. On this account he excused his inhospitality to us;
and, besides, the saying of the late General, "I would not trust any man
an inch beyond my nose, who would set an open example of
sabbath-breaking," might rise in his recollection much to our prejudice.
I felt the {473} Judge's answer to us as a reproof, because I hold it
essential to the good of society that Christian sabbaths should be

The scenery in the neighbourhood of the house and estate is very
interesting. The umbrageous mount, on which the house stands, is a mile
high from the shores of the great Potowmac, which is here two or three
miles broad.

The British, and all the foreign diplomatic personages, visited this
spot by water, and with the marine band saluted it with solemn dirges.
Our guide told us that none but _great gentlemen_ were permitted to see
the house and gardens on Sunday. I asked if the Judge preached or kept a
parson? He himself reads prayers, morning and evening, and therefore
keeps no parson.

From an attentive perusal of the American history, and a close
examination of the character of Washington, says Mr. ----, it appears to
me that the principal faculty of his mind was judgment, which always led
him to avoid the dangers of precipitancy, and the errors which
sometimes result from a more vivid and brilliant imagination. The
dictates of that judgment constituted the line of his conduct, which was
of course marked with the most consummate prudence. This virtue seems
never to have deserted him, either as a statesman or a warrior, in a
public or private capacity. His prudence and caution were particularly
observable in his military career, and, like Pericles, he never {474}
willingly came to an engagement, when the danger was considerable, and
the success very uncertain; nor did he envy the glory of those Generals,
who are admired and applauded, because their rash enterprizes have been
attended with success. He had many difficulties to encounter, but these
difficulties were readily surmounted. Patriotism animated him, and
prudence conducted him to triumph. With a limited education and little
patronage, he paved his way to greatness, and by his virtues, cast a
blaze of glory around his character, which time can only increase, and
which posterity must contemplate with enthusiasm and rapture. There is
no parallel for such a man in the annals of the world; so singular a
combination of virtues with so few vices. Such disinterested patriotism
and such unimpeachable integrity, with so many temptations to swerve and
so many inducements to betray, were never before united. Immoveable in
the hour of danger, no difficulties could shake, no terrors appal him.
He was always the same, in the glare of prosperity, and in the gloom of
adversity. Like Fabricius, he could not be moved from the paths of
virtue and honor, and like Epaminondas, he made every thing bend to the
interests of his country. His country was his idol, and patriotism the
predominant feeling of his mind. Personal aggrandizement and individual
resentment and interest, were alike sacrificed to this overwhelming
passion, which no difficulty could {475} weaken and no neglect destroy.
Washington was reserved, without being haughty; religious, without being
bigotted; great in all stations, and sublime in all his actions, whether
he moved in the sphere of domestic obscurity, or employed his energies
in wielding the destinies of his country. Antiquity would have made him
a god. Posterity will make him more. Every nation can boast of its
heroes, its statesmen, and its bards, but there are few that have
produced their Washingtons. He stands alone in the history of the world,
and will be venerated while virtue and patriotism have an influence on
human action.

"You will, (says the same eulogist,) no doubt, be astonished to
understand, that the remains of this great and excellent man still
repose in a humble sepulchre on the estate at which he resided, and from
which, like Cincinnatus, he was several times called by his country. The
Americans are certainly not ungrateful, but they seem to have an
aversion to perpetuate a man's name by "monumental brass," or to express
their gratitude by splendid tombs, or ponderous and magnificent
mausolea. Your long acquaintance with Westminster Abbey, where the high
and the low, the great and the obscure, the good man and the villain,
are alike honoured by their country or their friends, may, perhaps, draw
from you a burst of indignation, at the imaginary apathy and
indifference of this great republic, to the memory {476} and past
services of its illustrious dead, but I question whether it be not
correct policy. To begin would be to have no end, and the erection of a
monument to Washington might terminate, as in Russia, with a monument to
a dog. Since the invention of writing, and the present extent of
knowledge, the "storied urn and animated bust," have become almost
useless. History will record with fidelity the illustrious actions of
him who has deserved well of his country, and his name will be as
perpetual as if Pelion had been piled on Ossa, to preserve his memory.
It was doubtless owing to the want of this art, that the humble tumuli
of the Celts, and the massy pyramids of the Egyptians, were formed; they
had no other mode of expressing their gratitude, or of perpetuating the
memory of their dead. After all, perhaps, the best monument is "to read
their history in a nation's eyes.

"It is but justice, however, to state, that though the American
government have refused to erect a monument to the memory of their
illustrious hero, his countrymen have not been quite so fastidious; and
the citizens of Baltimore, with that enthusiasm and public spirit which
have done them so much credit, are now engaged in building a monument
that will, at once, evince their gratitude, their patriotism, and their
taste. It may be safely asserted, that the Americans pay less attention
to the depositories of their dead, than almost any other nation. {477}
They seem to be no sooner laid in the earth, than they are forgotten;
and the tear of sorrow, and the hand of affection, neither bedews nor
decorates the sward, under which the friend, the parent, or the relative
reposes. Among the ancients, you will recollect, this was a part of
their religion, and we owe to the tenderness and affection of a
Corinthian nurse for her deceased charge, the rich and splendid capital
which beautifies the Corinthian shaft. It is in vain to look into the
burial grounds of this country, for the pensive cypress, or the
melancholy willow, the virgin weeping over the urn of her departed
lover, or the mother hanging over the grave of her darling child. No
flower blooms, bedewed with the tear of affection. All is waste and
dreary, and dead as the sunken grave over which you pass; and a few
stones, on which are engraved the name and age of the deceased, are all
that remain to manifest the affection of the living, to those who have
passed away and are no more.

"Bushrod Washington, the present proprietor of Mount Vernon, is the
nephew of the General. He seems to be about 60 years of age, is below
the middle size, and apparently nervous and feeble; his complexion is
pale and cadaverous, but his countenance has the lineaments of
benevolence and good nature. He has long been one of the judges of the
supreme court of the United States, and has, during that period,
discovered no deficiency {478} in his acquaintance with the law. His
decisions are, I believe, generally correct, though not very remarkable.
I know not whether he ever was distinguished for his eloquence at the
bar; but little seems to be known of his powers as an advocate or a
lawyer, and that little does not tend to place him much beyond the grade
of mediocrity. Satisfied with the reputation which the fame of his
uncle, the situation he holds, and the wealth he possesses, cast around
him, he feels no motive to exertion, and no desire to render himself
illustrious by his own efforts. He appears to be one of those men to
whom the pleasures of the domestic circle are more seducing than the
fitful, though captivating splendour which surrounds the temples of the
statesman or the warrior, and he prefers what the world would term the
inglorious repose of domestic felicity, to the feverish agitation and
sickly turmoil of public life.

"Mount Vernon has become, like Jerusalem and Mecca, the resort of
travellers of all nations, who come within its vicinity. Veneration and
respect for the memory of the great and illustrious chief, whose body
it contains, lead all who have heard his name, to make a pilgrimage to
the shrine of patriotism and public worth, and to stroll over the ground
which has been consecrated by the repose, and hallowed by the ashes, of
heroism and virtue. A twig, a flower, or even a stone, becomes
interesting, when taken from the spot {479} where Washington lived and
died, and no man quits it without bearing with him some memento to
exhibit to his family and friends."

_17th._--I was revisited yesterday and to-day by Mr. Law, who, in
speaking of my new acquaintance Mr. Fairfax, says, "he is an amiable,
good, and learned man, but like Charles II. 'he never said a foolish
thing, nor ever did a wise one.' He is ever unprepared to protect
himself from cheats. This gentleman is the great great grandson of the
famous Sir Thomas Fairfax, Cromwell's favourite general; he was once the
richest man in America, but exchanged 100,000 acres of Virginia land for
the same quantity in the west country, which he was told abounded in
iron, silver, and other mines; he thus parted with a substance for a
shadow."[157] "He still," says Mr. Elliott, "possesses 100,000 acres,
and one of the warmest and truest hearts in the world. He was brought up
at Mount Vernon, a favourite of General Washington's, who predicted
great things of him." But, says Mr. Law, he has long been living in
prison bounds. His lady lamented to us on Sunday her want of a carriage,
and the hot walks she had to make to town. This gentleman's brother,
Thomas Fairfax, Esq., commonly known as Lord Fairfax, who, in his own
right is a British peer, possesses large unproductive estates, and lives
frequently in disgrace, but both, though lords in England, would feel
themselves {480} highly insulted were they so to be addressed here.
Both are staunch republicans.

I yesterday added to my acquaintance a lord-chancellor, a lord, and two
princes of the Ossage nation of Indians, who with two other chiefs, last
week, went in state (naked) to the Secretary of war, and stamped, and
said, in great anger, they came not here to be cheated out of their
lands. They are fine dignified fellows, speaking only their own wild

Mr. Law, during conversation this day, observed that if this government
would, and he believed they would, adopt his financial system, the
people here would soon flourish again, and every wild spot become a
garden. "Mr. Crawford, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, although he has
recommended a contrary measure, is exactly of my opinion. We are both as
much alike on this subject as pea to pea."

I said, "Mr. Law, would not a visit to England be agreeable? Would it
not tend to lengthen your life?" "O, Sir, it would, but I could not now
live in England; I must be active, and doing that which I deem for the
good of mankind. My opinions would run counter to the powers which be."
"But, Sir," rejoined I, "is it not our duty to be prudent and to seek
the peace of the land we live in? Because in its peace we shall have

"Certainly! such is the duty of every good man. {481} Why should he
sacrifice himself and family? Mr. A----, your envoy here, seems
suspicious of you on account of your acquaintance with Mr. ----. I am
sorry Mr. ---- should have given such toasts at the dinner on the 4th of
July, in favour of the radicals. What have the radicals to do with
America? These toasts will be sent home by A----. Envoys have nothing to
do but to watch the conduct of British subjects and give reports. I am
sorry that Mr. ----, who is a good, kind-hearted, polite man, should
thus expose himself, and you, and other friends, to suspicion and

_19th._--I received the following letter from Mr. Law, addressed to me
at Mr. ----'s.

                                      _Washington, 18th July, 1820._

    Dear Sir,

    I enclose you a list of garden seeds; if you will make a statement
    of the probable amount, I will pay now, or answer your draft after
    the purchase. A pound or two of Swedish turnips and of Norfolk
    turnips may be added. I shall be happy to pay every attention to
    any of my countrymen coming here, and to give them any information
    in my power. I regret that I formed your acquaintance so late. My
    hay turns out better than I expected, and I hope to have four or
    five acres of turnips, as I am sowing between my rows of corn. Any
    farming information I shall be very thankful {482} for. I remain,
    with wishes for a safe and speedy voyage,

                               Your most obedient servant,
                                                             T. LAW.

    Pray write to me by what vessel you send the seeds.

The following letter from Edward Meacher, gardener to Mr. Law, is a
specimen of the easy freedom and familiarity of Yankee labourers. It is

To Thomas Law, Esq.

                                                       _July, 1820._


    Considering my ill behaviour towards you the other day, I consider
    myself culpable; therefore to prevent such like trouble in future
    to you, I shall declare upon oath against spirituous liquors, such
    as brandy, rum, gin, and whiskey, _except three drams in the
    course of each day_, as long as I live with you. Three drams a day
    will not injure my health or temper. Upon these conditions I
    expect not to displease you in future, which will be a cause, I
    hope, for you to encourage me in your employment.

                                     From your faithful servant,
                                                       EDWARD MEACHER.

{483} _20th._--This day I bade farewell to Washington city and America,
and to all the bright and vivid spirits I found in it.

_21st._--In company with Mr. E. Dumbleton, and my wicked, beautiful,
silver grey squirrel, a native of Maryland, whose brushy tail is his
nightcap, and who eats razors, buttons, bibles, &c., and is therefore
sentenced to transportation for life, I embarked on board the good ship
_Minerva_ of Boston, to Amsterdam bound, and from Alexandria sailed
gently down the great river Potowmac.

After a passage of about 30 days, we arrived at the Isle of Wight. Here
I had the honour to present my most gracious Sovereign with a precious
relic--a cedar-cane cut from the grave of General Washington; together
with six gallons of "elegant, mighty fine claret," purposely sent on a
Yankee voyage of 10,000 miles, to ripen for the use of British royalty.


Having reached home, partially recovered what seemed irrecoverably gone,
my long lost health, and told my story, there seems little or nothing to
add, except a few retrospective observations, summarily bearing on the
preceding descriptions, opinions, and decisions, which throughout are
frankly and fearlessly rendered, chiefly aiming to enlighten the
ignorant, and to abash the wicked. "But," says the reader, "to emigrate
or not to emigrate? That is the question!" It is easier to propound than
to answer this inquiry. To seek a refuge from danger, and to fly from
the coming storm, is on the one hand in accordance with one of the first
laws of nature; and on the other hand, it may be said, that to abandon
our hearths, homes, and altars, because our country mourns and is in
trouble, is cowardly. That numbers have gone, are now going, and will
continue to go, is certain; for when there is a surplus population, and
the hive swarms, what shall set bounds to the free-born? To those, then,
who are inevitably destined to roam, friendless, homeless, really lone
strangers in a strange land, and to see their old, much-loved homes, and
the tombs of their fathers no more, I would say: Study the preceding
well-meant pages. I know your wants and feelings. Study, then, I {485}
would say, by every attainable qualification, principle, and sentiment,
to fortify your minds, and make yourselves all which you ought to be.
Plague not yourselves nor the land of your adoption, by importing and
giving perpetuity to homebred prejudices. A nest you will find; but
every where, like that of the nightingale, a thorn within it. Learn,
therefore, yourselves to forget, and as far as in you lies, teach your
posterity also to forget, and to remember only what they ought to
remember. A British origin will be ever honourable in their heraldry.
This is well worth remembrance, and may they never stain, never
dishonour it; but into whatsoever lands they wander, may they seek the
good and peace of that land, for in its good and peace they shall have
peace themselves!

To those whose disgusts and moral and physical disabilities point them
homewards, as prodigals to the house of their fathers, the broad
Atlantic, in the words of the Hon. J. Q. Adams, offers a highway for
their return; having undergone a process by which they shall, perhaps,
learn the vast sum and value of English homes and comforts.

The old family quarrel has evidently made the natives of both countries
somewhat incommiscible; else how is it that the French, Dutch, Germans,
Irish, and strangers of any other land, are more acceptable to America
than the children of the common parent, Great Britain. For to the latter
the most distinguished Americans have heretofore {486} proudly traced
their pedigree, unless some rank and cancerous blemish was in the root
and core of it. Hence all grades blush not to own and call her mother,
though she is denounced by many, and it must be owned with some justice,
as an unnatural parent. But those events have long since become matter
of historical record, and it is not good policy to visit the sins of the
fathers upon the children, from generation to generation. Let both
countries wisely learn to think correctly of their several governments,
and kindly of each other. Peace and goodwill, in all their fruitful
ramifications, will ever bring more silver dollars to the one, and more
golden guineas to the other, than fire-ships, torpedos, battles, blazing
cities, and heroes covered with glory!

"Well! I guess, after all," exclaimed a Yankee friend, "it is a good
land with small faults; necessary evils; seeming evils; good in
disguise." "Yes, it is a good land," rejoined another, in love with it
at first sight, "mine eyes have seen it for myself, and not another. I
am fascinated with it. My return from it would be impossible, but for
the adamantine chain which binds me to my country. My heart tempts me,
but my duty forbids me to break it." Hasty conclusions like hasty
matches, are rarely happy, and so it was with our enthusiast; for in
less than two years of patient trial and perpetual travel, he very
gladly returned to his native country, joyfully repeating,

    {487} ----"Whoe'er thou art,
  Cling to thy home. If there the meanest shed
  Yield thee a hearth and shelter for thy head,
  And some poor plot with vegetables stor'd,
  Be all that heav'n allots thee for thy board,
  Unsavoury bread, and herbs that scatter'd grow
  Wild on the river bank, or mountain brow,
  Yet ev'n this cheerless mansion shall provide
  More heart's repose than all the world beside."

Finally; were, however, America, of which I now perhaps take my leave
for ever, every thing that the purest patriotism could make it, yet the
climate is an evil, a perpetual evil, a mighty drawback, an almost
insurmountable obstacle to the health, wealth, and well-being of all,
except the native red and black man, the genuine aboriginal, and the
unstained African, for whom alone this land of promise, this vast
section of the earth, this new and better world, seems by nature to have
been intended. Otherwise, it is argued, would noisome pestilence
annually desolate its cities and districts, and every where unsparingly
and prematurely people the grave? In spite, however, of climes, tropical
or changeful, torrid or frigid, and of constitutional predisposition to
sickness, health, physical and moral, is much more at the command of
mankind than she is generally supposed to be. Temperance, abstinence,
and exertion, approximating to labour, in free air, are the essential
handmaids to health, and enable a man to laugh at doctors, and to
withstand the effects of climate. Hence, then, {488} in whatsoever
climes, stations, or circumstances, my reader may be found, let him
learn to think health worth a sacrifice. To persons, whose fortune it
may be to encounter the risks of this dangerous and debilitating
climate, I would especially say: Let ablutions and affusions of pure,
cold spring water, become habitual with you, and as a beverage, let
water be substituted for wine, whiskey, and alcohol in all its forms.
Let milk supply the place of tea, coffee, and other stimulants; and let
tobacco, snuff, and all the family of narcotics, be abandoned. Surely
health is ever, what a late venerable friend of his species was often
wont to call her, _the Sugar of Life_. He who thinks and acts otherwise
rarely finds health, and never deserves her.


[104] Richard Daniel came to Princeton in 1816. He was a circuit judge
for one year (1819-20), and subsequently represented Gibson County in
the legislature.--ED.

[105] Petersburg is fifteen miles south of Washington. Several families
had settled in the neighborhood by 1817. Pike County being organized in
that year, it was chosen as the county seat, and a town surveyed and
platted. It was incorporated in 1855.--ED.

[106] For the "mud holes" and Judge Chambers, see Hulme's _Journal_,
volume x of our series, notes 28, 29. For Corydon, see Flint's
_Letters_, in our volume ix, note 136.--ED.

[107] The Silver Hills extend north from New Albany through Floyd and
Clark counties, the two most prominent peaks being the "Haystack Knobs,"
at Bennettsville; the principal ridge is from four hundred to five
hundred feet above the valley.--ED.

[108] Uniontown is now Waverly, the name having been changed when the
Ohio-Scioto Canal was constructed through the village (1830), and it
acquired the dignity of a post-town. It is about twenty miles from

[109] Bainbridge, located near the falls of Paint Creek, eighteen miles
south-west of Chillicothe, was platted by Nathaniel Massie in 1805. It
contained three families the first year, and for two years thereafter
received no additions; but at the time of Faux's visit contained about
twenty-five dwelling-houses.--ED.

[110] For the early history of New Lancaster, see Cuming's _Tour_,
volume iv of our series, note 145.--ED.

[111] A brief account of the Erie Canal may be found in Buttrick's
_Voyages_, volume viii of our series, note 37.--ED.

[112] For the early history of Somerset, see Flint's _Letters_, volume
ix of our series, note 35.--ED.

[113] Major Zachariah Sprigg was an inn-keeper at Wheeling as early as
May 21, 1781; in 1783 he was major of militia for Ohio County. Consult
Draper MSS. in Wisconsin Historical Library, 2 SS 8 and 5 NN 16.--ED.

[114] For the more important places along this route, see Flint's
_Letters_, in our volume ix, pp. 64-79.--ED.

[115] John Randolph, of Roanoke (1773-1833), was elected to Congress in
1800, serving until his opposition to the War of 1812-15 cost him his
seat. He returned in 1815, and from that time assumed a strong
states-rights attitude. Famed as an orator, he gained a special
reputation as a master of sarcasm and bitter invective. See _ante_
(volume xi), note 34.

George Watterston (1783-1854), was appointed first librarian of Congress
by President Madison (March, 1815). He was a well-known writer on
Washington life and scenes.--ED.

[116] Observations sur le Gouvernement et les Lois des U. S. p.

_Comment by Ed._ Gabriel Mably (1709-1785) was educated at a Jesuit
college in Lyons, and lived the life of a scholar, publishing numerous
works on history and law. The above book embodied his views on the
United States Constitution, and was written at the request of Congress

[117] Henry Clay was appointed by President Madison one of the
commissioners to negotiate peace with Great Britain. He firmly opposed
granting the right of navigating the Mississippi River. After five
months of negotiation, the Treaty of Ghent was signed, December 24,

[118] The House of Representatives, like the House of Commons, is
sometimes very disorderly. Heat and cold have the same effect upon the
feelings of the members; for both make them quit their seats, and the
authority of the speaker often fails to bring them back. It is in vain
to call to order; cold has benumbed their fingers, or heat has dissolved
their solids, and they can neither think nor act.--FAUX.

[119] William Pinkney had a long diplomatic career. Born in Annapolis,
Maryland (1764), his father was a loyalist, but he joined the patriotic
side in the Revolutionary War. He studied law with Judge Chase, and was
admitted to the bar. In 1796 Washington appointed him commissioner of
claims against Great Britain arising under Jay's Treaty of 1794, and on
this business he remained in England until 1804. Two years later he was
again a commissioner to England to treat regarding aggressions upon
American commerce. In 1816 he was appointed minister to Russia.
Returning to the United States, he was elected to the senate (1818), but
died (1822), before the expiration of his term.--ED.

[120] William Wirt (1772-1834), one of the ablest lawyers of his time,
was appointed attorney-general in 1817, and served until Jackson's
accession to the presidency.--ED.

[121] Rufus King was born in Maine in 1755. Graduating from Harvard, he
studied law, and in 1784 was elected to Congress. As a delegate to the
Federal constitutional convention, he took a prominent part in framing
that instrument. Removing to New York City in 1788, he was, the
following year, elected to the United States senate, and for seven years
was minister to England (1796-1803).--ED.

[122] James Barbour (1755-1842) sat in the Virginia house of delegates
from 1796 to 1812, when he became governor of Virginia. Elected to the
United States senate, he was repeatedly chairman of the committee on
foreign relations. President Adams appointed him secretary of war
(1825), and three years later minister to England; but, being opposed to
the Jackson party, he was immediately recalled upon Jackson's

[123] Philip Pendleton Barbour (1783-1841), was elected to Congress in
1814, becoming speaker of the House in 1821. President Jackson appointed
him a circuit court judge, and in 1836 he was elevated to the supreme

[124] Jonathan Roberts (1771-1854) first represented his district in
Pennsylvania in the Twelfth Congress. He was elected to the senate in
1814, serving until 1821.--ED.

[125] Now Sir Charles Bagot.--FAUX.

_Comment by Ed._ Sir Charles Bagot (1781-1843), a well-known British
diplomat and ambassador to France, Russia, and Holland, and finally
governor-general of Canada.

[126] Hyde de Neuville (1776-1857), a royalist during the republic and
the empire, was minister of France to the United States (1816-21).--ED.

[127] This was Benjamin O'Fallon, whose mother was a sister of George
Rogers Clark, his father being Dr. James O'Fallon, a Revolutionary
officer and prominent among Kentucky pioneers.--ED.

[128] For the early history of Council Bluffs, see Brackenridge's
_Journal_, volume vi of our series, note 28.--ED.

[129] Red Jacket, or Sagoyewatha (1751-1830), was a Seneca chief, and
after the death of Brant the most prominent Indian among the Six
Nations. He fought on the American side in the War of 1812-15, and
refused to be drawn into Tecumseh's conspiracy. He is best known for his
eloquent speech against ratifying the treaty of Fort Stanwix (1784),
which ceded western New York to the whites. In later life he was a
helpless drunkard.--ED.

[130] Jedidiah Morse was born in Woodstock, Connecticut (1761). Being
graduated from Yale College he studied for the ministry, and in 1785 was
licensed to preach. Four years later he became pastor of a
Congregational church in Charleston, remaining there until 1820, when he
removed to New Haven, and there preached until his death in 1826. He was
interested in civilizing and christianizing the Indians. In 1820 the
secretary of war deputed him to visit the western tribes and suggest
measures for their improvement. The results of his investigation were
published in his _Report to the Secretary of War on Indian Affairs_ (New
Haven, 1822). He also published some text-books on geography, which were
used extensively, and gained for him the title of "Father of American

[131] These portraits of the Pawnee chiefs were hung in the Indian
gallery in the department of war, being later destroyed by fire. Three
of them are reproduced in color in McKenney's _History of the Indian
Tribes of North America_ (Philadelphia, 1855), i, pp. iii, 33, 37, 143.
The artist, Charles B. King (1786-1862), was a native of Rhode Island.
For forty years his studio in Washington was frequented by the prominent
men of the day.--ED.

[132] For the Oto Indians, see Bradbury's _Travels_, volume V of our
series, note 42.--ED.

[133] I made them understand the man was hung for murder, which seemed
to please them.--FAUX.

[134] Concerning the calumet of peace, consult Long's _Voyages_, in our
volume ii, note 43.--ED.

[135] This was probably Luther Rice, a Baptist preacher of much power.
Born in Massachusetts (1783), he was ordained as a Congregational
minister, and sailed as a missionary to India (1812). There he united
with the Baptists, and returning to America, travelled through the
eastern states to interest that denomination in foreign missions. Mainly
through his efforts, Columbian University was established at Washington,
and he was for several years its agent and treasurer.--ED.

[136] Edward Everett, now in his twenty-eighth year, was professor of
Greek at Harvard (1819-24).--ED.

[137] Burgess Allison (1753-1827) studied theology at Brown University,
and was pastor of a church at Bordentown, New Jersey, his birthplace. In
1816 he was elected chaplain of the house of representatives, and later
became chaplain at the navy yard, remaining there until his death.--ED.

[138] Thomas Law, sixth son of the Right Reverend Edmund Law, D.D., lord
bishop of Carlisle, was born at Cambridge, England, October 23, 1756. In
1794, after acquiring some wealth in India, he came to America. Within a
year he met Elizabeth Parke Custis, granddaughter of Martha Washington,
whom he married (March 21, 1796). In 1802 Law went abroad, and returned
in April, 1804. In the following August a legal separation was secured.
Law denied Faux's hint of impropriety of conduct on the part of his wife
in a signed article, "A Reply to Certain Insinuations," published in the
_Quarterly Review_, No. 58. He attributed the unfortunate occurrence to
"a disagreement in disposition." For outline of Law's life, and of his
unhappy marriage, see Allen Cullings Clark, _Greenleaf and Law in the
Federal City_ (Washington, 1901), pp. 236-244; 285-290.--ED.

[139] Francis Scott Key (1779-1843), author of our national hymn, was
for many years attorney of the District of Columbia.--ED.

[140] Commodore Decatur was killed in a duel with Commodore James
Barron, March 23, 1820, near Bladensburg, Maryland.--ED.

[141] James Kirke Paulding, born in Dutchess County, New York, drifted
to New York City at the age of nineteen (1798), and became acquainted
with Washington Irving, publishing with him, during the year of 1807,
the satirical periodical _Salmagundi_. A few years later he published
_The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan_. In 1814 he
entered the lists for the defense of America in the "War of the
Reviewers," by writing a pamphlet, _The United States and England_, in
reply to a review in the _Quarterly Review_ of Charles Ingersoll's
_Inchiquin's Letters_. The sinecure referred to by Faux was secretary of
the board of navy commissioners, Madison having appointed him to that
position in 1816. He continued his literary work throughout life, also
his interest in naval affairs, entering Van Buren's cabinet as secretary
of the navy.--ED.

[142] For a brief account of Peale's museum, see Flint's _Letters_,
volume ix of our series, note 21.--ED.

[143] The Otaheiteans are Hawaiians.--ED.

[144] Probably _The Cow Chase_ (London, 1781), a satirical poem in three
cantos, on an unfortunate sally made by Brigadier-general Anthony Wayne
on Bergen Neck, on North River, July 20, 1780. It was written before
André's apprehension, the last canto being published (at New York) on
the very day of the author's capture. See "Introduction" to _The Cow
Chase_ (Albany edition, 1866), p. 11--ED.

[145] Eleuthère Irénée Du Pont (born in Paris, 1771), was early
interested in scientific subjects. At the instance of Lavoisier,
superintendent of the government powder mills, he studied at the royal
mills at Essonne in order to prepare himself for that position. But the
French Revolution interfered with his plans. After being thrice
imprisoned, his father came with the family to America (1799). Eleuthère
turned his training to account by establishing (1802) a powder factory
on the Brandywine, near Wilmington, which, at the time of his death
(1834), was the largest in the country.--ED.

[146] Captain Joseph Huddy, of the New Jersey line, had been captured by
the British, falsely accused of being concerned in the death of Philip
White, a desperate Tory, and hanged. In retaliation Washington was
authorized by Congress to select by lot from his prisoners an officer of
equal rank, to be executed. The lot fell to Sir Charles, but his
execution was delayed, and Congress ultimately directed him to be

[147] See _ante_, note 131.--ED.

[148] Theodore Dwight (1765-1846), who in 1817 founded the New York
_Daily Advertiser_, was a brother of Timothy Dwight, the famous

[149] John Broadhead Romeyn (1777-1825), graduated from Columbia
College, and after preaching in Troy and elsewhere in eastern New York,
became pastor of Cedar Street Presbyterian Church, New York City (1807).
He was one of the founders of Princeton Theological Seminary, and at the
age of thirty-three was moderator of the general assembly of the
Presbyterian church. He was offered the presidency both of Dickinson
College and Transylvania University, but declined to leave his New York

[150] For Judge Emmett, see _ante_ (volume xi), note 37.

William Sampson was born in Londonderry, Ireland, 1764. He became a
barrister, and acted as counsel for members of the Society of United
Irishmen, thereby incurring the suspicion of the English government.
After the rebellion of 1798, he was imprisoned, and upon gaining his
freedom came to the United States, establishing himself as a lawyer in
New York, where he was influential in amending and codifying the state

[151] Outbreaks of this character were so frequent in the years
immediately following the War of 1812-15, that they found a place in the
governor's annual messages. See Fortier, _History of Louisiana_ (New
York, 1904), iii, p. 188.--ED.

[152] In 1801 Theodosia Burr was married to Joseph Alston, governor of
South Carolina (1812-14). The "Patriot" was supposedly lost off Cape
Hatteras in 1812. See Merwin, _Aaron Burr_ (Boston, 1899), p. 140.--ED.

[153] Isaac Roberdeau (1763-1829), came of a Huguenot family. His father
settled in Philadelphia, and was a general in the Revolutionary army.
Isaac became an engineer, and assisted in laying out the city of
Washington (1791). In 1813 he was appointed a major and topographical
engineer in the regular army, and superintended the survey of the
boundary between the United States and Canada, in accordance with the
terms of the Treaty of Ghent. In 1818 he organized and was made chief of
the bureau of topographical engineers in the War Department.--ED.

[154] For a short sketch of Volney, see Flint's _Letters_, volume ix of
our series, note 121.--ED.

[155] From the seed of the best species of Maryland tobacco received
from this gentleman, my neighbour, Major Smith, of Somersham, in
England, has, unaided by art, planted and manufactured tobacco, of a
superior fragrance and flavour, and which he introduces to his friends
on special occasions, when it is used as prime Canaster from

[156] William Thornton was educated as a physician, and lived for many
years in Philadelphia, where he was a member of the American
Philosophical Society. He removed to Washington when the seat of
government was transferred thither, and in 1802 was appointed head of
the patent office, a place which he held through the remainder of his
life. He was also an architect of ability, and designed the Philadelphia
library building (1789).--ED.

[157] See _ante_ (volume xi), note 25.--ED.


       *       *       *       *       *


  Reprint of the original edition: London, 1821

  [Illustration: Log Tavern, Indiana]





  Winter Residence at Philadelphia;



  _South Rauceby, Lincolnshire._

  "Nothing extenuate--nor aught set down in malice."




Ever since the period of our war with North America, which ended in the
independence of the United States, the attention of Europe has been
intensely drawn to that portion of the globe; and many Philanthropists
have entertained sanguine hopes that the declaration of Independence was
the commencement of a new era of radical improvement to mankind--that
the old Governments of the world, full of abuses, and unable to stand
before the light of the new Republic, must soon fall before it; and that
from America would triumphantly arise the Genius of true liberty, to
glad and improve the condition of the nations of the earth. So ably were
the whole negotiations conducted on the adverse side, both before {viii}
and after the war, by a few shrewd and determined minds; and so
effectually was the war concluded by a Washington, that the people of
the old continent fancied the new one must be covered by Statesmen and
Warriors, and hailed the approaching amelioration of mankind from the
bright examples these were to send forth.

'Tis true the subsequent conduct of the Republicans, both to their
leaders and towards ourselves, did not tend to keep up the admiration
which had been raised; yet, other causes--the late events in Europe,
having brought governments there into great difficulties, and multitudes
of the people, from the intoxication of a short-lived prosperity,
eventually to drain the cups of privation and poverty, many of these
naturally turned their attention to other countries; and leaving their
own, sought on foreign shores those comforts they had lost at home.
American liberty again became the theme of a class of politicians among
us; travellers of inquiry again went out to make observations; published
their accounts, mostly of flattering import, and in consequence, {ix}
ship-loads of emigrants from all the countries of Europe were constantly
arriving in the ports of the new Republic.

One of the latest among the crowd of travellers who thus have set the
fashion of emigration (Mr. Morris Birkbeck) has published his account,
and has met with the greatest success in influencing the minds of his
countrymen;--his "Letters from the Illinois," and previous "Journal,"
are written in a plain concise style, and yet dictated at the same time
by an unperceived romantic sanguine temperament which always gives so
beautiful a colouring to nature, and produces a work most fascinating to
the mind.

These favourable accounts, aided by a period of real privation and
discontent in Europe, caused emigration to increase tenfold; and though
various reports of unfavourable nature soon circulated, and many who had
emigrated actually returned to their native land in disgust, yet still
the trading vessels were filled with passengers of all ages and
descriptions, full of hope, looking forward to the West as to a land of
liberty and {x} delight--a land flowing with milk and honey--a second
land of Canaan.

To inquire into the truth of so inviting a prospect as that held up by
Mr. Birkbeck and some others, and in part to relieve the mind from evils
of a domestic nature, the Author was induced in the year 1819 to embark
for North America: he took in his hand the flattering accounts in print
in order to compare them with his own actual observations; with the
intent either to add his confirmation to the favourable side, or
otherwise to exert his utmost to undeceive the many of his countrymen
misled by specious reports.

With these views the journey was undertaken, and the annexed pages are
the result; in perusing which the reader is requested to observe, that
he will not find, strictly speaking, an emigrant's guide through the
country, (although there are hints which it is hoped may be found
useful,) but chiefly facts and reflections for consideration previous to
going thither under the inducements held out by Mr. Birkbeck and
others:--These hints, the Author is conscious, have not been conveyed
{xi} in the most pleasing form, but he trusts, that if the matter be
found important the manner will not be looked upon with the severity of
a critic's eye.

To the Americans the Author wishes to address a few words, in order to
assure them that, in the following observations, he has fully intended
to guide his pen by the spirit of his motto: nor does he think them at
all to blame in not coming up to the perfect model of a Republican which
may be mentally pourtrayed; but rather ourselves are wrong in forgetting
that they are not only men, but men placed in a new country, with all
its difficulties, natural and moral, to overcome. If I picture to myself
a giant and find a man of but ordinary proportions, is he to blame for
this? Certainly not. The North Americans possess a fertile beautiful
country and a fine climate: no one can wish for the improvement and the
true enjoyment of these advantages more than the Author; he the more
laments the apparent presence among them of a huge portion of blind
conceit in their own superiority, and also the absence of the very
essential Christian principle of good-will and benevolence; {xii} under
the influence of which the truly great hold out the hand of good
fellowship to the rest of mankind, regard them as brothers, and wish for
"peace on earth, good-will toward men."



May 5th. Off Margate on board the Venus, bound for New York. This ship,
which was to have sailed on 29th April, did not drop down the river
until the 1st instant; and then, owing to an accident which befel the
Steam Tug, did not reach Gravesend until Sunday the 2d. We had meanwhile
repaired thither, and remained smarting under the extortionate charges
of a Gravesend tavern. At length, on the Monday evening, the signal was
displayed for sailing, and trunks, &c. having been previously sent on
board, we took a {2} long leave of English ground, and proceeded with
other passengers to the ship; expecting, like unfledged Voyagers, to
find everything in trim to receive us.

When agreeing with the Captain for the passage, I had inquired if there
were many other passengers, and was then told there were "_a few_;"
previous to going on board the "few" had increased to "as many as
convenient;" notwithstanding this hint, so inexperienced were we, that
we were not in the slightest manner prepared for the scene presented to
our appalled senses on rising the ship's side! Trunks, portmanteaus,
packages of all kinds and descriptions, piled in all directions and in
every way--a crowd of dirty squalid steerage passengers, which appeared
to our magnifying eyes at least five times the real number, (about
80)--altogether formed a mass through which we could not, without much
difficulty, push our way to the cabin; and that accomplished, still more
horrors presented themselves to view: instead of the carpet and good
order which reigned there when I had examined the vessel while in dock,
the dirty floor was covered now with nothing but trunks, bedding, and
other baggage; giving an effect the most forlorn and petrifying to us
all: so that we sat down upon broken chair, box, trunk, or anything we
could, and glared upon each other {3} desponding as the fallen angels at
their first drop!

Our fate, however, not merited like their's,--no; but we regarded our
Captain as the arch-fiend and tormentor, and we gave him looks of
reproach which pretty plainly said, "you have entrapped us into your
abominable pit this time, but if we ever get out you will not do so
again:"--However, I will not suppose he enjoyed our horror, but rather
partook a little of the general feeling; for he sat, his eyes glaring as
wildly as any of the party until at length, as nothing was offered to
relieve the spirits, I proposed a biscuit and some porter, which were
brought, and nearly in silence consumed; after which we each turned in
for the night, and sought repose.

       *       *       *       *       *

While engaged this morning writing the above in the cabin, the ship
floating easily along under a pleasant little breeze, we suddenly felt a
shock, followed by a rubbing along the bottom; the Captain started up,
and was upon deck in a moment; the passengers ran in all directions, and
the appalling cry "we are aground" sounded on all sides! Happily, though
such a mixed multitude, even the females betrayed but little fear, and
most of the men lent every aid in their power; the {4} weather was
favorable, and though the ship beat much, the bottom being sand and the
tide rising, great hopes were entertained that she would get off. Had it
happened in the night and the wind had come on to blow hard, we should
in all probability have been lost; being day, we were descried from the
shore, distant about ten miles, and boats of fishermen soon arrived to
render assistance; but now a long previous altercation ensued between
them and the Captain, before a bargain was struck: for a service which
they acknowledged would not occupy more than half an hour, they first
asked one hundred, and then sixty guineas.--Such is man when the
consideration is the property of his fellow! Our lives they did not
contemplate to be in danger, otherwise to save them these same men would
have risked their own without thought of reward: so let us be in charity
with human nature yet. At length, after an anxious interval to the
passengers, it was agreed that fifty guineas should be the price for
getting the ship afloat; the word was given, and in twenty minutes of
alacrity the bower anchor was carried out; the men exerted themselves at
the capstern; the ship's head swung round; and after three or four
violent bumps of the stern upon the sand she heeled off and swam again.
Those who have experienced such accidents may know how people {5} feel
at such a moment; mutual congratulations went round accompanied with
internal thankfulness to that Providence, whose care is over all.[2]

6th. Off Deal. A lovely morning, well calculated to remove from the
mind the impressions of the preceding day; a clear view of the town; and
the French coast also is very visible from the deck.

In order to attain the important objects of health and security among so
promiscuous an assemblage, the cabin passengers met at the instance of
the Captain, and a set of resolutions was drawn up for the general
observance; and a copy being handed to those of the steerage, was
acceded to by them and this morning put in force:--by these rules, one
captain of the day from the cabin, and another from the steerage were on
duty by rotation,--candles were put out at a fixed hour,--the parts of
the deck for the use of the cabin and steerage passengers were
prescribed; and sundry rules for cleanliness, which were afterwards but
ill obeyed: no forfeitures were necessary, as the captains of trading
vessels have by law the power {6} of punishment; as far at least as
putting in irons for misconduct, and indeed this was inflicted in the
course of the voyage, upon a riotous tailor.

_Sunday_, 9th. Light airs with mist hitherto; wind this morning rather
more favorable. Prayers read upon deck by one of the passengers.

We are now clear of the Channel, and drifting upon the vast wilderness
of waters, a plank our dependence until we may reach a new continent. To
sailors of course, a circumstance so common brings little reflection,
but those to whom the situation is new, must confess a sensation most
awful and uneasy: certain it is we are equally in the hands of a
beneficent Providence, whether we tread the seemingly firm-set earth, or
commit ourselves as now upon this immense ocean; but it is in vain for
philosophy to disguise--she cannot subdue feeling.

10th. We are now first experiencing a calm attended by a heavy swell of
the sea;--the sailors call this "Paddy's Hurricane," and Paddy was
right, for the rolling of the Ship, racking of masts, flapping of sails,
&c. render it anything but a _calm_ on board.

Of our cabin party it is not necessary to record the views; suffice it,
that it consists of three ladies and six gentlemen, besides six
children; some for pleasure and health, others for business bound.

{7} The passengers in the steerage are far too numerous either for their
own comfort or ours; many of them seem very respectable people, farmers,
farm-servants, hop-planters, masons, carpenters, and tailors, with their
wives and children. I cannot perceive the tenable policy of throwing
obstacles in the way of emigration of such people; as England is
overstocked with artisans, and other countries are in want of them, it
is surely a mutual benefit; and to prevent individuals seeking the best
market for their craft is the highest injustice.

12th. Being fine and calm in the mid-day, the Hold was opened and
various packages got up for examination and re-stowage; while this was
doing, and loose straw laying about on deck, there was a cry "the
Caboose is on fire!" This only occasioned a momentary panic, as
_luckily_ no harm arose from it; the chimney was foul, and some fat
taking fire had communicated to the soot, and from thence nearly to the

This day we took up a cask which upon tapping proved full of excellent
brandy; it was covered with barnacles, and had probably been floating
four or five months.

15th. A Hawk of a small kind, resembling the Sparrow Hawk of England,
was this morning caught in the rigging; the nearest land being supposed
above three hundred miles renders this an {8} extraordinary
circumstance: we also saw yesterday a large brown bird pursuing a Gull,
and understood its name to be Rump-poke. An appropriate appellation, as
it pursues other birds for their droppings, which it catches as they
fall and feeds upon.

18th. We have experienced so many head winds and calms that the spirits
of all, not excepting the Captain, are cast down,--two thousand five
hundred miles yet to run. Yesterday a lady a cabin passenger, was safely
delivered of a boy her first child.

22d. Favorable breezes. A quarrel between the cook and a sailor, in
which the former knocked out three of the latter's teeth with a billet
of wood; and for which he underwent a severe _cobbing_.[3]

24th. Two Whales of the Grampus kind rose near the vessel. At 7 A. M. a
large fish was seen to pass the ship tormented by a shoal of small ones;
the Captain ordered the boat down, went out, struck it, and it was got
on board; it proved to be a Sun-fish that weighed one hundred weight and
a half: it was quickly cut to pieces, dressed, {9} and eaten by the
ship's company and some of the passengers; the flesh very white and


Anything but clean,--anything but simple,--anything but what one is used


Some risk,--little comfort,--a total inversion of all accustomed
habits,--a feeling of insecurity,--irritability,--a longing to be
ashore; in short, a total _be-blue-devilment_ at times, with a few
hours of pleasanter colour just to keep hope alive.

The ignorance and simplicity of some of the passengers are greater than
might be supposed; one said the other day he supposed we had five
hundred miles yet to go, and another asked me if America was

26th. A tremendous wave broke over us, giving the ship such a shock as
laid her down on her side. Great was the confusion; trunks thrown upon
trunks, tables, chairs, all forced from their {10} mooring, in spite of
bolts and ropes; we were glad to find however that, excepting the
fracture of glasses and crockery, no material accident had happened to
any one.

About this time an account of each steerage passenger's stock of
provisions was taken, and though but three weeks out, several were found
nearly exhausted; so improvident had they been.

       *       *       *       *       *

The following list of sea stores is recommended as sufficient for a
steerage passenger.

      42 lb. Beef or Pork.
      56 lb. Cabin bread (biscuit).
      14 lb. Flour.
       7 lb. Cheese.
       4 lb. Butter.
       1 lb. Coffee (ground).
     1/2 lb. Tea.
      10 lb. Sugar.
     1/4 lb. Pepper.
       1 lb. Salt.
       7 lb. Split Peas.
         Bottle of Mustard, about 1s. 6d.
     100 Eggs.
       2 Bushels of Potatoes.
       A few red Herrings.
       2 Quarts of Vinegar.
  {11} 4 Dozens of Porter.
       1 Gallon of Spirits.
         Some Carrots, Turnips, and Cabbages.
       2 lb. Soap.
       Some pieces of Tobacco-pipe Clay, which will be found to rub well
             with sea water in cleansing the skin.
       A Tin-pot with cover, in shape like a coffee boiler, with a hook
             at the side to hang upon the bars of the Caboose grate.
       Crockery, Spoons, &c.

A passenger provided as above will not experience want in any common
passage, and indeed there are some articles with which he may dispense;
as, for example, the Porter; and others he may lessen, as the Potatoes
_perhaps_. With respect to medicine, it may be as well to provide some
Epsom salts and magnesia, and a few lemons will be found highly
grateful; otherwise the ship always carries a chest containing the
common remedies.

31st. The wind blew what the sailors call a strong breeze, which is in
fact a gale, from the west; the ship laboured much, and such was the
impression upon the minds of many of the steerage passengers, that at
night they took leave of each other, thinking it not likely the vessel
should live through the night.

{12} _June_ 1st. With the prospect of a protracted passage, an
inspection was also judged necessary of the ship's cabin stores; and
such waste and extravagance was proved against the Steward, that it was
resolved to take into our own hands the ordering of each day's
provisions: a meeting was consequently held, an account of stock taken;
and ordered, that one of the party by rotation should superintend each
day's consumption of food; and also of water, which had likewise been
used very extravagantly. Let those going a voyage not only ascertain
their _sort_ of Captain but their _sort_ of Steward, upon whom I can
assure them a very material share of their comfort will depend.

The general subject of conversation now is, calculating the probable
duration of the passage; yet it is essential to comfort during a voyage
to abstract the mind as much as possible from such reflections, and to
engage it as much as in us lies in some useful studies and
occupations--'tis one of the worst to watch the winds and the waves;
'tis one of the most useless, for we cannot command them.

We are, it is supposed, approaching the great bank of Newfoundland: as
much doubt exists as to the accuracy of the dead reckoning of longitude,
(and we have no other,) our anxiety is great {13} to ascertain the
passage over the bank, by which a new departure may be taken.

8th. It is now the general opinion, in which the Captain coincides, that
we have passed, without knowing when, the great Bank; the weather is
warmly tempered by a fine S. W. breeze, and the ship is wafting us
delightfully over summer seas: hope again "tells a flattering tale" and
conversation runs chiefly on what will be done, and what will be had, on
our arrival at the much-desired Port.

Last night the full moon exhibited, through a heavy mist, an appearance
of several rings of the prismatic colours,--a beautiful effect, which I
remember once before to have witnessed in England.

11th. Spoke the brig Spring, of Blyth, homeward bound; and had the no
small satisfaction to find that her calculation of longitude nearly
agreed with our own late suppositions.

This morning the extraordinary conflict between the fish called the
Thresher and a Whale was seen near the vessel; the Thresher repeatedly
raised itself on the Whale's back, so that its tail was nearly upright,
and struck the Whale violently with it on the head; it is said that the
Pilot-fish is at the same time wounding him underneath with his
sword-snout: they did not however succeed this time, but relinquished
their pursuit at the noise {14} which the people made at the
extraordinary spectacle. The Thresher appeared to be about six or seven
feet long.

16th. A Shark seen in early morning: and a large Sword-fish swam
majestically round the ship's bow, probably taking it for a Whale; but
finding his mistake he dropt astern, and soon after a shoal of small
fish, perhaps endeavouring to avoid him, rose completely out of the
water;--his length was about nine feet as we judged, and his form and
colours beautiful. Several kinds of birds have lately been seen; among
which we viewed with pleasure the "Hagdown" as the sailors say it is
always seen on or near soundings; it is about the size of, and somewhat
resembles, a Duck.--Many Porpoises too have lately passed us; one of
these the men struck, and succeeded in getting it on board, when it was
soon cut up and eaten; we were prevailed upon to taste it, and must
acknowledge that it could not have been distinguished from a fine beef
steak; the gravy was indeed richer.

18th. The events of the voyage have lately been harassing and pregnant
with danger; three officers have kept reckonings of longitude, and all
have proved erroneous; the ship has headed them considerably, and, when
we little thought of our danger, has been near wrecked upon one of the
dangerous shoals off Nantucket; the grave of {15} many a good vessel.
Our escape was providential: during breakfast, the Captain, with
seeming presentiment, suddenly went upon deck while the lead was
throwing; he made the next cast himself, which he had no sooner done
than he let it go--gave the word "'Bout ship"--ran himself to assist,
and notwithstanding the great confusion, it was quickly effected;--the
steersman called out "What point?"--answer, "Out as you came in," and in
twenty minutes we had deepened again as many fathoms! Had this happened
during the night, or had the sea been rough, we should, in all human
probability, never have been heard of again. It was conjectured, that we
had been upon the edge of what is called "Fisher's Rip," and the water
when the ship was put about had suddenly shoaled to less than three

We stood a southerly course until midnight, in order to avoid the
breakers which lie out forty miles south from Nantucket; and then tacked

19th. More alarms,--yester-evening the Boatswain suddenly called out
"shoal-water!" the line was immediately thrown, but the depth proved
twenty-five fathoms: at half past nine P. M. one of those storms which
are I suppose frequent in this new world, passed over us, and most
awfully grand was its transit. At eight P. M. the ship was just put
about under a {16} clear serene starlight,--not five minutes had elapsed
when we heard great noise and confusion upon deck, and running up saw
the sky covered with the tremendous cloud-storm; throwing its black
mantle across from E. to W. and dipping its points like wings into the
opposite sides of the horizon. The sails were flying in all directions,
and the men clueing them up as fast as they could, while the ship was
turning round at the mercy of the whirlwind; providentially, the extreme
violence of the storm passed above us, and even while we beheld it, the
dense vapour seemed to vanish from the sight instantaneously; leaving
upon our minds the effect of enchantment.

Six o'clock P. M. not yet quit of terrors; another storm, the extreme
force of which we have again been spared, has just past over, but its
effects continue; it rains violently, and lightens incessantly.

_Sunday_, 20th, four A. M. Land at length seen on starboard quarter,
which proved to be Long Island: the sun arose and brought with it a day
and breezes the most favorable, under which we ranged along the coast of
the Island, at about seven miles' distance, having a view of it which
imagination made delightful. Various schooners, brigs, and other
shipping are in view, working {17} different ways, and our recent alarms
are forgotten in the beauty and grandeur of the scene.

Before night we passed Sandy Hook, were boarded by a pilot, who took us
up the Bay about six miles and then cast anchor for the night: once more
then surrounded by land, the outline of which was indistinctly seen by
the aid of an azure sky thickly studded with stars, we at length retired
to rest, and undisturbed by noise slept profoundly.

21st. The ship dropped anchor again opposite the Quarantine ground,
where it was necessary to undergo an examination of the births previous
to obtaining permission to gain the much desired Port. A party of us
took this opportunity to go on shore, and after seven weeks' confinement
to enjoy again a walk on land. We procured clams, oysters, milk, new
bread, &c. loaded with which we returned well pleased on board. The
houses here are chiefly frames covered with boards, having lean-to sheds
roofed like the houses with shingles, the best being made of cedar;
under these sheds the inhabitants sit and enjoy the cool breezes,
unannoyed by the scorching rays of the sun: cherry and peach are the
principal trees around these dwellings, except the weeping-willow and
formal Lombardy poplar; these last one would suppose the least likely
{18} to be cultivated in a country where shade is more a necessary
comfort than to be called a luxury.

This morning in working up to the Quarantine ground, we passed a
schooner, or rather the remains of one (for it was a mere wreck,) which
had suffered in one of those black squalls that had passed over us; she
had only a stump of a mast left, to which her remaining sail was tied.

22d. After some difficulty in obtaining the permit for our departure
from the Quarantine hospital, (which the filthy state of several of the
steerage births amply justified,) we at length weighed anchor for the
last time, with a favourable and light breeze, affording leisure to
admire the beautiful surrounding scenery of the Bay, and soon brought-to
off the city of NEW YORK;--an officer of the customs came on board; he
appeared a very respectable man, and behaved very politely to the
passengers; at the same time was strict in his duty and superior to a
bribe.[4] Our fees at the custom-house on clearing were altogether half
a dollar and twenty {19} cents: on leaving England we had paid the
Captain for doing the same for us three pounds. This was probably _good
pay_ for the trouble, and indeed I should recommend every passenger not
to be above managing this affair for himself, if he values money.

23d. The heat of the weather in the city is so oppressive to English
constitutions, that we have established ourselves across the river, on
the Jersey shore, at a very pleasant place called Hoboken;--here we pay
7$ per week each, for board and lodging, and have a quick and pleasant
communication with New York by steam ferry-boats every hour during the
day to and from it.

On entering our present boarding-house to inquire their terms, &c. we
encountered the first striking specimen of the effects of freedom
without refinement; upon asking for the Landlord, a young woman who was
sweeping the floor slip-shod, desired us to walk into a room she pointed
to; where, she said, we might wait for further orders!! We did as we
were ordered, reflecting on this contrast to a good English inn where,
upon the traveller's arrival, from the Landlord down to "Boots,"[5] all
are immediately {20} upon the alert ready and willing to attend to your

One reason for this want of attention in the American servants is, that
they are paid wholly by their employers, and expect no compensation from
their guests; though, I have since seen enough to convince me that this
praiseworthy custom is gradually wearing away, and that in general the
servants will not refuse a fee when offered.

Called at a working cutler's near the post-office, to purchase a pocket
knife; he asked two dollars for one which in London would be sold for
about four shillings; said he paid rent for his shop alone 400$, and
that fuel cost him during the winter seven shillings sterling per week.

The Americans at New York have not made a favourable impression upon me:
almost every face expresses the game of desperate speculation. I am told
that this is owing to the general distress of mercantile affairs
consequent to the late war with England; and also the effects of the
French revolution, felt upon both continents, but in a much higher
degree in America, as that country was less able to bear up against
it;--the people here like those of England were beyond measure
extravagant under the deceitful prosperity, and they now doubly feel the
dreadful re-action. Besides, like ancient Rome, here is the asylum of
{21} the desperate and discontented of all nations:--Will the period
arrive when, like the former, this modern Rome shall rule mistress of
the globe? It is, if I may venture to judge, at all events very distant;
they must first gain the necessary qualities for the attainment of such
an elevation; at present, of these they are nearly destitute. But to
return to my journal.

Business here, with the exception of a few respectable houses, is
conducted on an apparently slovenly plan; clerks at their banks look
like our tavern waiters in deshabille, and the bankers themselves not in
appearance so respectable as our clerks.

The town is handsomely built, and several things constantly remind one
that here the people rule, and their convenience and comfort are
studied: the footways for example are in general twice as broad as ours,
in some instances taking up at least as much of the street as that set
apart for the carriages; and the hackney coaches are not only neat but
_elegant_ in our sense of the word, and both drivers and horses equally
superior. In a late publication,[6] it is observed that the goods in the
stores are set out in a slovenly manner; {22} my own observation is that
their shops or stores are apparently as good, and the stock as well
shewn as in many good houses in London: their coffee-houses and
dinner-rooms in the best lodging-houses are even superbly fitted up,
very much in the French style: the Tontine, the City, and the
Bank-coffeehouses are three of the first; and a person may now dine at
any one of them, I believe, for three dollars and a half per week, and
fare sumptuously upon turtle, &c. every day;--wine is but little drank,
or any other liquor indeed, either at or immediately after dinner by
Americans; the reason for this, as given to me by an American, seems
good--"We consider dinner as a sufficient stimulus" says he "without
adding wine or spirits to it."

The business of the courts of justice during the summer is done in the
evenings and nights; the great heat of the weather in the day time
absolutely preventing any number of people from collecting together
without danger of fevers, particularly such persons as compose the
witnesses, auditors, and attendants in a law court.

Mr. Fearon states, that forgery of bank notes is unknown here, for, that
the execution of them is so excellent (I write the sense of his words
from memory) it renders it too difficult to attempt.--I can affirm that
there was scarcely a store I {23} went into at New York, but they could
shew me several; and so well executed, it was impossible for me to see
any difference between the valid and the forged note.


Leaving Hoboken on the Delaware, we proceed along a good road with some
romantic scenery of rock, wood, and water, through the town of Hackensac
to the village of Paterson; where we found a good tavern and an
attentive Landlord, a very remarkable character in the United States:
after dining at the table d'hote, which was very well provided, we set
out to walk to the falls, a mile distant, under a burning sun, which
made it appear at least two. The beautiful clear stream of the gentle
Passaic here suddenly rushes down two perpendicular fissures in the
granite rock; making a grand fall at each, of about one hundred feet,
into a capacious basin beneath; from thence recovering, it murmurs along
a stony bed a mile or two, when resuming {24} a placid course it winds
through a country thickly settled, the inhabitants chiefly Dutch and
Germans; and gliding by the towns of Belville and Newark finally mingles
its waters with the Delaware. The views near Belville, and on the road
to it on the banks of the Passaic, are very fine: but the whole way the
black population were so numerous as to be quite oppressive to the eye
unaccustomed to it; every house we passed presented a group of black
heads huddled together glaring at us:--But the beautiful Passaic has
floated us away from its falls too soon; we must just return thither to
say that we ascended by steps made for the purpose to the top of the
rocks, from whence the river is precipitated. Here are some wide yawning
clefts of great depth, and one of them occasioned a dreadful catastrophe
not long before our coming: a new-married couple accompanied a party to
the falls, and after admiring the tremendous broken and precipitous
rocks and chasms, were returning in order to descend; when the bride ran
back, as she said, to take a last view, and heedlessly going too near to
the edge of the yawning cleft fell into it in sight of her husband, who
in vain rushed to save her--she was seen no more!

On returning to the tavern at Paterson, I asked the little shabby
bare-footed boy, our guide, {25} whether he worked at a wool manufactory
we were passing, "No," said he, rather bluntly; "I go to school; my
father's a 'squire:" thinking I did not hear correctly, I repeated the
question and received the same answer. "And pray what is a 'squire, what
does he do?" "Oh, he attends sessions, trials, and hears causes." "And
what may your father do at other times?" "He _assists_ Mr. ******* at
the tavern there, in the bar!"

We returned to Hoboken by the town of Belville; day departed long before
we got back, and night came on, its darkness beautifully relieved by the
novel effect of the fire-fly, myriads of which were darting in perpetual
motion; and in all directions filling the air and the surface of the low
grounds with brilliant illumination.

We met on the road many small light waggons drawn by two horses
harnessed to a pole, which are here by the country people used
generally: in these the farmer and his family travel at a brisk pace and
very commodiously;--at a distance I at first fancied a handsome Phaeton
approaching, as they drove towards us; indeed, away from the city every
one seems comfortable and independent; we see no misery, no disgusting
army of paupers, not even a beggar to be seen:[7] we have, however, {26}
already discovered that this country is not entitled to a character for
cheap living; for many articles, particularly those of luxury, you pay
at least as much as in England, the difference consisting in this, (a
very material one to the seller,) that here, the whole price of the
commodity goes into the pocket; there, a heavy tax is paid in some shape
or other out of every article sold: for example, the hire of a gig and
horse for the day is here thirteen shillings and sixpence sterling; the
owner puts the whole of this into his pocket, for there is no duty to
government; whereas in England we all know too well that there is an
enormous one, besides an assessed tax for both carriage and horse. Wine
here, though of course to be bought much cheaper by the private
consumer, is charged at least a dollar and a half per bottle at a public
boarding-house, though the duty on importation is trifling; in England
the price is the same, notwithstanding the high duties. As another
instance, washing is done here from three shillings and sixpence to four
shillings and sixpence sterling per dozen, of everything
indiscriminately; though soap is not half the price it is in England,
where the same quantity may be washed for two shillings.

From the above examples, and many more I could mention, it would appear
that the man who should emigrate to this country to _spend_ an income,
{27} might not gain by the change; it is equally evident that the
individual who goes to _make money_ may be benefited.

4th. Sunday here presents a most pleasing contemplation; the people
before united in trade and political government, are now seen shedding
out quietly and in utmost harmony, repairing to the places of worship of
their several persuasions: the English protestant establishment seems to
be well attended; the service with a few alterations, and the (perhaps)
well-judged omission of our frequent repetitions, was very impressively
read to an attentive congregation. The places for worship are generally
strongly and, though plainly, handsomely constructed; yet not perhaps,
strictly according with the best rules of architecture.

We cannot but observe a very striking flatness or insipidity of
character pervading the population, which is not perhaps to be
attributed to bad times, but to various other causes: I am apt to
believe that a large portion bear expatriation with a sort of melancholy
feeling--America is not yet their home,--they talk little of it, but
much of Europe.

The United States is a theatre on which are met all nations of Europe,
each at present attached to the customs they have left there, and
agreeing {28} only in the support of religious and political liberty:
time alone can wear down their heterogeneous habits into a national
character, which many other causes, besides those now enumerated, may at
present unite to oppose: the effect is an evident want of energy, of
heart and soul in every thing animating to other nations. I am just
returned from witnessing the celebration of the anniversary of their
Liberty,--such a festival might well be expected to call forth every
spark of enthusiasm; but, even then, not an eye either of spectators or
actors glistened with joy or animation, the latter seemed walking to a
funeral; the others contemplating the melancholy ceremony! Nothing could
dispel the illusion but the gay clothes of the female spectators, to
which their countenances in general bore a strong contrast.

Notwithstanding these unfavourable impressions however, one could not
but at intervals feel gratified;--it was the assembly of a people to
commemorate the epoch of their liberty, and _we wished_ to discover an
elevation of character deserving of the blessing, and to hail them as

_July 6th._ Took leave of New York, of which city, perhaps I may have
said more than necessary, so much having been published before. By steam
boat and land carriage we were conveyed {29} to Bordentown, a beautiful
elevated situation, commanding most extensive views, where Joseph
Buonaparte at present resides.[8] He lives quietly and hospitably, and,
by accommodating himself to the people, exists amongst them
undisturbed:--on his arrival he received a mark of attention as uncommon
as it was unexpected; a mob at Philadelphia collected to see and welcome
him; a compliment he mistook, for not aware of their intention, and
supposing it might be to seize and deliver him up, he was with
difficulty at length prevailed upon to shew himself and receive their
friendly greetings. He is fond of shooting and finds plenty of sport: in
the widely spread low grounds covered with brush wood, the Wood-cock and
Snipe abound; and the Partridge or Quail is plentiful in the high
country. At a little distance from Bordentown, on the edge of a
precipitous cliff, and surrounded by wood, forming a pleasing retreat,
stands his house.[9]

7th. Much pleased with the scenery during the passage down the Delaware;
on its beautiful Pensilvania side many of the houses appeared to be
placed in delightful situations: as we floated {30} along the Sturgeon
was seen frequently darting upwards at the insects on the surface; he is
a fish but little valued here, either because his flavour is not so good
as it is with us, or perhaps a _royal_ fish suits not republican
palates. The spot where Penn first landed in search of a site for his
intended city was pointed out as we passed; and soon after came in view
PHILADELPHIA, presenting by no means so favourable a coup d'oeil as
New York had done.


Of this city I shall say little at present, but hasten the western
journey. Having both read and been told of streets with clear water
running along the channels, and of trees planted on each side, affording
a pleasing shade during the heat of summer, I confess a great
disappointment at finding but very few trees, and no water but green
stinking puddles! Indeed, for the credit of New York, I must say that
their Board of Health is more active, or the people themselves are more
cleanly; for, there no stinks assaulted our noses equal to those we met
with here: walking in these streets under the influence of a hot burning
sun I have {31} met with the putrifying carcass of a dead dog; from the
stench of which I have ran off, while the natives were passing it
without notice! We need not then be at a loss to account for their

Away from the wharfs the streets are in general good, well paved, and
laid with fine broad causeways of brick: the handsome flights of marble
steps to the doors would look still better if well polished; the marble
is white with blue veins, of a good kind, and comes by water about sixty
miles, at a cheap rate.

During the hot season, mineral waters, (chiefly soda,) sometimes mixed
with syrups, are drank in great abundance;--the first thing every
American who can afford five cents (about threepence) takes, on rising
in the morning, is a glass of soda water: many houses are open for the
sale of it, and some of them are fitted up with Parisian elegance.

Being so attached to water potations it is not surprising that these
people should stand in more than usual dread of canine madness; they are
dog-mad without being bit: such is the rage against the canine species
that carts are sent round the town both here and at New York every two
or three days, attended by fellows armed with bludgeons and spears, with
which they kill every dog they meet, and receive I am informed a dollar
for each. I had a fine Bull-dog put an {32} end to in this manner, for
which fifty dollars had been offered since my arrival; the cold blooded
wretches first enticed him, as I heard, towards them, and when he, not
knowing fear, came up to be caressed, they despatched him with spears
and bludgeons. For this I obtained no redress.

Accompanied Mr. ******* to the handsome public library presented to
Philadelphia by Dr. Franklin;[10] and of which his ungrateful countrymen
make use, while they are as silent as his statue over the entrance if
the worthy donor is mentioned, or if they do speak of him, it is
generally slightly;--the fact is, he was too good and too shrewd for
them to understand. I inquired respecting his philanthropic bequest of
money laid out at compound interest in aid of young tradesmen, and heard
it was properly attended to; though my informer added that several who
had been assisted from the fund had not subsequently been fortunate in
trade: that is probably according to the old adage "lightly come lightly
go," they had spent it instead of attending to business: the original
sum was four thousand dollars, and it has now increased to sixteen

14th. Visited the Penitentiary: this institution has been so fully
described by others that it is not necessary to give more than an
additional testimony to the truth of its admirable {33} plan;
unfortunately, the prison is at this time so full, (five hundred are in
confinement,) that it is impossible to lock up, separately at night,
those whose crimes are trifling from culprits of greater magnitude; but
a new prison is building which will enable them, when finished, to
correct this evil: the utmost cleanliness prevails, with order and
industry; indeed, the whole had the appearance of a well-regulated
manufactory, in which a regular debtor and creditor account is kept with
each individual, who receives, at the termination of his confinement,
the balance of his earnings, with which he may be enabled to maintain
himself while he seeks honest employment: an excellent regulation. We
afterwards viewed the Hospital for Lunatics, where the same, or more
attention to cleanliness and every thing conducive to the health and
recovery of the patients pervade every part; no appearance of gloom in
the building, but all calculated to inspire the mind with ease and
comfort. There is a good garden which, besides providing fruits and
vegetables to the house, affords a pleasant walk to the convalescent;
and in front of the building, encircled by a beautiful collection of
trees, lemon, orange, pomegranate, &c., stands the statue of William
Penn, holding in his hand the Charter of Liberties.

[Illustration: Little Brandywine, Pennsylvania]

This is not a cheap country for the _stranger_: {34} either
boarding-houses or taverns he must be in, (private lodgings being
unknown;) and in such establishments the charges are high: but the
_inhabitant_ must, it would seem, live at a very reasonable rate, as the
following prices will shew, and the lowest are not stated:--Meat, good
at six cents[12] a lb., excellent Tea for one dollar a lb., Sugar (loaf)
for eleven cents a lb., Soap at ten or eleven cents a lb., and other
groceries cheap in proportion. Of Wines, Port we buy for two dollars the
gallon, Claret one and a half the gallon, Sherry two and a half.
Spirits,--good Brandy for two dollars, Rum and Hollands the same.

But we will take leave of Philadelphia for the present--a future
opportunity may occur for further observations; and to that chance we
will leave it for the more important view of the Western country.

21st. With a strong but light carriage, called here a Dearborn waggon,
for myself and party, and a light covered baggage waggon driven by my
servant, I left the City about noon of such a day of heat as we had
never until lately experienced: in consequence of which my dog, the fine
animal above alluded to, ran off in a high fever, and I {35} never saw
him again; but he recovered, and came back to the house I had left in
search of me, and was taken care of for a few days, when the dog
butchers destroyed him. Not to mention the breaking of a three gallon
Demijon bottle of good liquor in rattling over the pavement, another
cross adventure happened, which made the commencement of so long a
journey ominous;--having sent the baggage waggon forward the first
stage, and there happening to be two roads and two inns with the same
sign at about the same distance, my man unluckily took the wrong way--we
slept the first night therefore ignorant of what had happened to him;
however he crossed over, and to our mutual satisfaction joined us the
following day. On requesting the ostler to call me early next morning,
the drunken old beast told me I might "call myself and be damned." Oh,
the blessings of independence!--But I will say this for the Americans,
that if during my stay one other oath was uttered it is the most I

24th. At Lancaster, Pensilvania.[13] We left Philadelphia on the 21st,
and have travelled through a country well cultivated and still improving
as we advanced, until, near this town, it breaks into hill and dale,
woodland and pasture, forming the most beautiful scenery, and wanting
nothing to the eye but water; actually {36} it is, we are told,
exceedingly well-watered. We admired the state of cultivation, observing
good crops of red clover-seed, and the wheat stubbles clearly showing
that heavy crops had been carried;--the beautiful Indian corn just
shooting into ear, green and luxuriant, greatly relieved the eye; the
oats alone (not yet harvested) looked short in the straw and bad, owing
we were told to their quick ripening and want of rain. The clumsy
zig-zag rail fence of the first settlers is giving way to strong post
and rail, and in a few spots to the live hedge, which looked beautiful.

[Illustration: Bridge at Columbia, Pennsylvania]

Thus we have passed along the centre of a fine valley of cultivated
land, grandly skirted by the primeval forest the whole way; the houses
and other buildings in general are excellent, bespeaking the inhabitants
to be at least rich in comforts; which are after all true riches. The
horses of Pensilvania have been frequently praised: they are indeed
excellent; uniting strength of frame with activity, and coming nearest
in form to the old English charger as seen in paintings; they are by no
means generally castrated as in England. The roads as yet we do not feel
inclined to praise, for they are abominably stony and jolting; yet they
seem to have been formed at some cost, in some parts, I am told, at
least twenty dollars {37} per rod; but no carriage except of the
strongest kind (and their construction here is admirable for the
purpose,) could last long against the perpetual concussions they
receive. It is much to be regretted that in laying out the roads of this
new country, the space allotted for them had not been thrice their
present width, which would have left an ample summer road on each side
of the principal one, rendering it better both for convenience and
ornament; but in this and too many more instances the Americans, instead
of adopting better plans, and improving by our errors, have servilely
copied those of the old country.

To the same lounging idleness remarked by Mr. Birkbeck we too must bear
testimony: added to which may be observed a most unconciliating manner
of studiously avoiding common civility, arising we suppose from a vulgar
idea of shewing their independence. The black population of all shades,
from the deepest to nearly white, still appears considerable as we

Lancaster is a very respectable town, with a handsome court-house, &c.
Slaymaker's inn or tavern excellent. A large manufactory of rifle
barrels is carried on here, much cheaper than they can be produced in
Europe; a very good rifle may be had complete for twelve or {38}
fourteen dollars, clumsy in appearance, but throwing a ball with
astonishing exactness. It was market day, and horses, carriages, &c.,
were among other things put up to auction; the auctioneer, riding or
driving up and down the streets, with stentorian lungs proclaiming the
qualities of the horse or carriage on sale, and receiving the biddings
as he went on: a ranting preacher's exertions are nothing compared with
this man's.

[Illustration: Susquehannah River at Columbia]

[Illustration: Place of Worship and Burial Ground at Ligonier Town,

29th. At Chambersburgh. From Lancaster, by Columbia passing over the
beautiful Susquehannah by a close bridge of one mile and a quarter long,
to this town the roads are at present wretched, even dangerous; and the
settlers, German and Dutch boors, as abominable. Having broke a buckle
of one of the traces, we applied to a blacksmith to mend it, which he
refused to do. Night with a thunder-storm approaching, we tied up the
harness as well as we could, wasting plenty of hearty bad wishes upon
the cursed smith which some poor Irishmen working on the road joined us
in, though they could not assist us; and proceeded some distance, the
storm still lowering, to a tavern kept by one of the above wretches
where we were absolutely refused admittance: obliged to drive on we just
got to the door of another, when the thunder in tremendeous peals burst
over us {39} accompanied with torrents of rain; here we bolted in
determined to be received, and found ourselves in the midst of parties
of ill-looking people drinking whiskey and smoking. It was the bar or
tap-room, and as no offer was made of a better or safer place for
ourselves and luggage, and a little disapprobation being consequently
shewn by some of my party, the brute landlord, notwithstanding the
storm, told us we had better drive on to the next town, if we disliked
his accommodations.--Not chusing to be drenched in rain for his ill
humour we were obliged to remain during pleasure; until at length I got
mine host into better humour, and he gave us a tolerable good supper and
beds, though with the usual company of bugs and fleas, and without water
for washing, which they positively refused to let us have; observing, we
might wash out of doors. This man boasted of being possessed of
thirty-five thousand dollars in property, and said, that land now worth
one hundred dollars per acre was bought by his father for four dollars.

       *       *       *       *       *

Tired of such abominable inns and the keepers of them, we have now twice
boiled the kettle in the woods and breakfasted upon the contents {40} of
our canteen, a plan we have much enjoyed, and recommend to all
travellers in this country whose convenience it may suit. The scenery is
beautiful, the land pretty well cultivated and finely interspersed with
woodland; the harvest, except Indian corn or maize, is nearly got in,
and seems to have been abundant. Man alone here stands an object of
disgust. How strangely to our circumscribed views does Providence work
its purposes! To a rough untutored set of naked savages, another race of
little less than savages (clothed savages) has succeeded; who, in all
probability, will in their turn give place to a third of some intellect
and refinement; themselves driven from their paternal hearths by the
insolence of an aristocracy, the intolerance of a state religion, or the
craving demands of an extravagant government: these, seeking for
themselves and their posterity relief from such evils, will bring into
this fine portion of the earth, the letters and refined manners, which
alone it wants to make it perhaps one of the most desirable countries of
the globe.

We are now ascending the first range of mountains separating the eastern
from the western part of the continent. The grand and ancient monarchs
of the forest have only been removed where the road is opened for the
passage of the {41} traveller. The Oak, the Chestnut, the Locust and
various other trees tower aloft in their prime, while some lie fallen
with age, and others, inclining from their aged roots, ready to
follow,--emblems these of the lot of humanity!

The heat of the sun, though great, is here tempered by a cool air from
the mountains. A man, his wife, and children travelling in their light
waggon with one horse, have joined us; they are on their way to
Virginia, in which State he lives; he seems to be a good-natured civil
being and by no means wanting in humanity in general; yet custom could
make him smile at my expression of abhorrence, when he said there was no
law practically for slaves in that State, and that he has _frequently_
seen them _flogged to death_!


When we drove up to the door, a black or two came to the horses, no
master or his representative appeared. We got out and walked into the
common entry, and at length I accosted a stranger to know if there was a
master of the house, who very civilly said he was in the back part and
would perhaps soon come; I then went and called the Independent, who
came forward, {42} I told him we wanted breakfast, he just inquired for
how many, and then, without shewing a place to sit down, went to order
it. This man I afterwards could perceive knew what he was about,--the
above is one of the modes of shewing to an Englishman their boasted
liberty and independence; their vulgar minds cannot perceive the
difference between servility and civility. Having a tent in the baggage
waggon and every thing for the purpose, we last night escaped these sort
of fellows, and their bugs and fleas, by driving into the wood, where,
finding a pleasant spot and good water, we lighted a fire, took tea very
comfortably, and slept well upon the camp-bedsteads: this, during the
hot weather, is by far the most pleasant plan where it can be adopted;
but there are some objections to it which cannot easily be got over; it
is not always in one's power to pitch the tent in the neighbourhood of
good water; the apprehension of the horses breaking their halters and
straying is not pleasant; (otherwise, they are quite as well off as
ourselves away from American buildings;) and the greater attendance
necessarily required from our own servants, both to ourselves and horses
is harassing,--another assistant or two would have rendered the plan
feasible with comfort and less expence. By the way, it is strange that
{43} tavern-keeping should increase in these times, so dead as they say
to trade, and consequently one would suppose also dead for travelling;
but so it is, taverns are every where building or adding to: what a
joyous prospect for the bugs and fleas! Expressing myself at a loss the
other day to account for the number of public-houses building, a black
man within hearing said he guessed they were preparing for better
times--they could just now do it cheaper as hands, in consequence of
want of money, were more plentiful: his observation appears just.

[Illustration: Widow McMurran's Tavern, Scrub Ridge]

_August 3d._ The weather is extremely hot, and we have encountered
several most tremendous storms of thunder and lightning. The thermometer
is now at 88° in the shade with a draught of air at one o'clock; in the
sun it is at least 108°. Many parties from various nations and of
different modes of travelling are on the road for the West, and we hear
of great numbers having passed during the spring and summer, all making
towards the great point of attraction the western country.

We have now passed over Cove mountain and Scrubridge;[14] the road over
both has been lately formed, is judiciously laid, and would be excellent
were the stones covered with gravel, or rather were they broken small;
as it is, one is shaken to pieces without the possibility of avoiding
it. {44} Under this evil we are solaced by the views of grand forest
scenery,--the Oak of several kinds, the sweet Chestnut, the black Walnut
and Hickory, with here and there tracts of pine, cover these mountains;
affording shelter to herds of deer, foxes, rakoons, and also, as we had
occular proof, to snakes of various kinds. Throughout the mountains and
their neighbourhood you almost universally meet with most excellent
water, affording a delicious beverage during the hot weather; the trunk
of a tree hollowed out is set up like a pump, with a spout near the top,
from which the water, constantly rising towards its level, runs in a
clear and cool stream.

[Illustration: View on Scrub Ridge]

5th. At Bloody Run, called so from a battle fought with the natives;[15]
here stands a little town pleasantly situate on the Juniatta river,
and containing several useful trades, such as blacksmith, wheelwright,
harness-maker, tailor, and draper, &c. We approached it for the last
nine miles by a new and excellent road just finishing, which is laid a
considerable way along the Juniatta, the banks of which are beautifully
edged with woodland. Some alterations and repairs done to the dearborn
and the waggon here were charged at the following rate:--

  {45} Wheelwright, for two new poles, one great swing
         tree, and two single ditto                            $4 : 50
  Blacksmith, for ironing the above (except one of the poles.)  6 : 50
  Price of a horse-shoe and putting on                          0 : 31-1/2
  Ditto, a remove                                               0 : 12-1/2

We here enjoyed ourselves under the comforts of a good inn and attentive

10th. At Johnson's tavern, foot of Chestnut Ridge. We have now passed
the Allegany mountains, and can affirm that at this time of the year
there is little except the stony road very formidable to encounter: the
line of it is laid with judgment, and with steady horses and a stout
carriage may well be passed over by those who fear not a shaking; that,
indeed, they may rely upon. The settlers on the eastern side of the
mountains take great pains to deter the traveller from attempting the
pass, and even after having surmounted the Cove mountain, Scrubridge,
&c., I was told of the great difficulties of Laurel Hill; the fact is,
it proved the easiest of the whole; nothing annoyed us but the sun, it
being about mid-day when we began the ascent.

Much has been said of the expense of travelling in this country, I give
therefore a night's bill at one of the better houses, viz.

  {46} 5 Suppers                       $1 : 87-1/2
  Lodging                               0 : 37-1/2
  Hay for 4 horses                      1 :  0
  8 Gallons (1 Bushel) of Oats          1 :  0        £. _s._ _d._
                                        4 : 25        0 : 19 : 1-1/2

A night's bill at a good English inn for the same would be double the


A tavern-keeper brought in some wine glasses stinking of whiskey, to
which a cloth seemed never to have been applied; out of a pitcher of
water he poured some into a glass, just shook it, and then throwing the
water into the waiter upon which the wine stood, walked away satisfied
with this proof of his cleanliness: and a female the other evening, in
order to brush away the flies while we were at supper, flourished over
our heads her dirty pocket handkerchief, in the absence of the brush of
feathers fixed upon a long stick, which is generally waved over the
dishes during the repast. The practice of going barefoot is here very
general among working people, particularly the females; it is by no
means an uncommon sight {47} in New York and Philadelphia, during the
summer season, even in good houses; a custom this, probably, at least as
cleanly as that of wearing close shoes and stockings.

12th. At Greensburgh, thirty miles east from Pittsburgh. The country we
have lately passed is beautifully undulated, land of good quality
interspersed with woodland, worth near from twenty to twenty-five
dollars per acre; water plentiful and good.

Our landlord has just returned from a journey to the western country as
far as St. Louis, on the borders of the Missourie territory; his report
of the country is not favourable: he says it is very unhealthy, which he
ascribes to the woodland, contrary to the general situation of such
land, being lower than the open prairie; consequently retaining much
stagnant water, the fruitful cause of diseases.

18th. At Hayes' tavern, three miles west of Pittsburgh, in which
"Birmingham of America" I had intended to make some stay; but the heat,
dirt, filth, and charges made me hasten out of it in search of rest and
fresh air to this place.

The town of Pittsburgh[16] stands beautifully, at the junction of the
two rivers, and the land around it is of good quality; but its trade is
upon the wane, not alone owing I apprehend to the times, {48} but to the
town of Wheeling's being better situated for ready communication with
the western country, and consequently thriving upon its decay.
Pittsburgh has, too, suffered greatly from the extensive failures of the
country banks. I met everywhere grave, eager, hungry looking faces; and
could perceive, as well as hear complaints of, a general want of

It being near the hour of dinner when we arrived, we joined the company
at table, consisting chiefly of constant boarders, who, after a quick
and silent repast, vanished; leaving at table two pleasant and travelled
men, one a man of law from Boston, (Massachusetts,) the other a
gentleman resident in Virginia. We talked of slavery, which the latter
defended ingeniously, though not convincingly, by quotations from the
sacred writings, St. Paul, &c.;--he owned a numerous establishment of
slaves, and such was his reliance upon their attachment and content,
that he had not the slightest apprehension of danger to his family
during his absence: he had come to Pittsburgh to attend a trial, and
entertained us with an account of the conduct in court of his Counsel,
who, he gave us to understand, was a man high in the profession; neither
Counsel nor Judge as is well known, put on here any gown but the heat of
the day had induced this gentleman's {49} Counsel first to put off his
coat, and not finding himself yet cool enough he got rid of waistcoat
also; and then, further to cool his constitution and assist thought, he
put a cigar into his mouth, and in this trim paraded up and down the
court. The old gentleman, who had been in most parts of Europe, then
asked what could strangers, just coming from England, think of such
conduct in a court of trial? The glass circulated and in such
conversation the time passed agreeably, until, at some general
observation I made, the Bostonian fired up and we were as near a quarrel
as any prudent people need to be; when the Virginian interposed and
succeeded in making peace: however, harmony had been broken and we soon
after separated. In the evening, expecting a pleasant drive of three
miles, we left Pittsburgh; and, crossing the river by a respectable
new-covered-bridge, for which I paid a toll of one dollar each carriage,
took a wrong turn on the other side; and after encountering most
dreadful roads, and making a tour of above six or eight miles instead of
three, arrived by moonlight at the long-looked-for tavern.

At this obscure inn exists yet hearty at the age of eighty-eight years,
one of fortune's fools, Captain Fowler, an Englishman late of the 38th
regiment of foot; a man who in early life was {50} advanced, solely by
merit and strict attention to the duties of a soldier, through every
gradation, until he not only bore a captain's commission, but at the
same time received the pay of adjutant and paymaster to three
regiments.--Having attained to this rank, the favourite of Lord Percy,
General Crosby and other officers of his day, and being in the high road
to further honour and promotion, he was induced on the insidious
misrepresentations of a sordid brother, to quit all these favours of
fortune and come to America: here, at the instance of this relative
embarking in one plausible speculation or another, he wasted his
fortune; and now wears out the remainder of his days unknown at this
tavern, kept by a good-hearted rough Irishman who has become his
son-in-law. It is pleasing to see the attention that he receives from
the family, which uniting with age and religion seem effectually to
reconcile the old man to his fate.


At this small house are maintained four female and two male servants,
yet the house is not half cleaned, and the garden is little else but
weeds; litter and dirt pervade the premises, while these Independents
will play for hours at ball, or loll {51} over a rail to rest
themselves. Behold a true picture-general! How _pleasing_ to the lover
of freedom to contemplate its blessed effects! Leisure, instead of
inducing habits of mental improvement, and cleanliness, leaves them, in
utter negligence of both, only to pass half their time in mere idleness
and dirt: but why do I speak of the lower order while those, who should
set these a better example, pass their days at taverns and other
boarding-houses in idle games of shuffleboard and ninepins; or, seated
for hours motionless under the shed which is universally attached to the
houses, seem to exist solely to inhale the fumes of tobacco. Truly
these people understand not liberty,--civilly, it is idleness and
licentiousness; religiously, a leaving them to their wildest fancies.


A black girl with youthful spirits was playing with a lad in the town
street, when the wheelwright, with whom I was talking while he mended
the carriage, said, "if it were not for fear of the {52} law one would
be inclined to put an end to that black----; they ought to be taught the
difference between a black and a white, and to pay more respect than to
think of associating with them!"--The man spoke really in earnest, and
would have thought little of putting the girl to death.

Immediately afterwards I met a white little boy who followed a tall
mulatto woman, and with all his little strength was beating her with a
stick; at length the woman could bear it no longer, and told him, if she
should be _whipped_ the next moment for it, she would pull his ears if
he continued to do so. The same day, in my hearing a mulatto woman was
threatened by her master with the application of the "cowhide" for not
bringing the Independent his umbrella quick enough!


From the slight chirping of a few grasshoppers or crickets in England,
no one can have a conception of the noise of a summer night here; all
the insect tribe seem to open at once and to join in one perpetual
chorus, very unpleasant to ears unaccustomed to it.


The Pensilvanians resemble in many points the Scots: they go barefoot,
they have both some dirty habits, neither have yet very generally
erected temples to Cloacina beyond the immediate neighbourhood of great
towns. A medical man lately told me that the itch, a disorder which
proves uncleanliness where it prevails, was as rife as in Scotland; of
drams of whisky and bitters they are equally fond. In cookery the
comparison turns in favour of our northern neighbours, who understand it
far better than they do here, where it is the most abominable messing
and spoiling of provision imaginable: nothing but frying in butter till
the stomach turns even at the smell; of vegetables they have but small
variety, and of these the sickly tasting beet is a favourite, which they
dress in the same disgusting way as the flesh-meat, neither good for
palate or stomach.

22d. At Washington, Pensilvania, eight miles west of Canonsburgh: this
latter little town stands in a healthy beautiful situation. It has a
college in an unfinished state; there are three professorships, viz.
Mathematics and Natural Philosophy, Languages, and Humanity Class, the
whole supported {54} by voluntary contributions to which the government
have made a handsome addition: at this time there are ninety
students.[17] The land about Canonsburgh to this place, is generally of
very good quality, and just now may be bought at a reasonable rate; its
nominal value, I was informed by one of the students, is from under
twenty, to the best about thirty dollars per acre; it abounds in coal,
lime, and iron; the first only two cents per bushel at the pit, and laid
down at the door for two more. There are many English settlers
hereabout, and the shew of improved management was very perceptible.
There are some objections however to this part of the country, which
perhaps the improvement of roads and canals will in time obviate; it is
a distant point from both the great markets for commodities, the Eastern
and Western; consequently what they sell is low, and that which they buy
is very high.

       *       *       *       *       *

Washington (Pensilvania,) is a very pleasant, fast-increasing, and of
course thriving town, through which the great national western road and
six others are laid. The College here too is in an unfinished state; it
has now only {55} forty-five students, owing to the dismissal of a
favourite president, and the appointment of one not liked.[18]


On leaving Washington a few miles, the traveller enters the state of
Virginia, which he crosses to Wheeling, a town on the eastern bank of
the Ohio. The whole way is in general a fine drive, and in two or three
years will be better from the improved roads forming every where as we
pass with great judgment and spirit. The National road is a work truly
worthy of a great nation, both in its idea and construction; upon it,
the traveller will be enabled to pass with comfort, from the eastern
coast, westward the whole way to New Orleans; and perhaps by another
branch to St. Louis, without being stopt to pay a single toll.[19] This
is as it should be; for roads are one of those important works which are
scarcely ever executed well by individuals, and which therefore should
be done by their representatives, and paid for by the treasury; one is
not then stopt every five or ten miles to pay a toll frequently
exorbitant; nor would the public be speculated upon {56} by individual
proprietors[20] or small companies, who seldom execute these works upon
a scale sufficiently liberal.


Almost all the labourers employed here upon the roads are either Irish
or English, and it is not certain that these republicans have not a
secret pride in beholding the natives of the old world toiling for their
benefit; however, the earnings of the men are I believe sufficient to
render them in time independent, and I must say they look in general
well fed, well clothed and comfortable. We passed one party employed in
ploughing down part of the uneven road with a strong machine drawn by
eight oxen, while two others drew a large wooden scoop to shovel up and
lead away the ploughed up soil: it appeared to save much labour. The
Irish here have not lost in our esteem; two or three times we have been
beholden to individuals of that nation for good-natured little services:
one of them lately aided me successfully to get along part of the new
road where we had met with some opposition; another actually accompanied
us about nine miles on a like occasion, not with a view to
remuneration, for I could not persuade him to {57} take any thing for
his services but some refreshment at the tavern. I heartily return them
the good wishes they so frequently expressed as we passed them. One of
the above men had acquired some property; he told me that seven years
ago he bought land at six dollars per acre, and that he had just sold a
part of it at fifty, and some even so high as seventy dollars per acre.
The proximity of the new road had increased thus the value of his land.

The beautiful Sassafras shrub is now plentiful, also several others
which I in vain endeavoured to obtain the name of; for the people seem
almost totally ignorant of the trees and shrubs in their woods.


Is very pleasantly situated on the Ohio, and, standing upon high ground,
appears to be healthy; it is also a very thriving town, as a number of
excellent buildings and others rapidly carrying up sufficiently testify;
among these is a public seminary endowed by a professional man in the
law, who, dying without heirs, left amply sufficient to endow it:[21]
near to this stands a neat chapel erected by methodists. Two good
vineyards {58} are planted here, which looked thriving and, we were
told, produce excellent wine.

Without meaning to speak in favour of slavery, I will yet state the
fact that, during the drive across this small arm of the slave state of
Virginia, the white people seemed far more respectable and civilized
than in the free state we had just left; almost all we met accosted us
pleasantly, as if to welcome a stranger without that rude stare to which
we had become accustomed; the blacks, too, appeared to be well clothed,
civilized, and comfortable; very superior to the free black population
elsewhere seen. We had scarcely crossed the Ohio into the free state of
that name, when we found a rogue and rudeness; freedom must at least
take honesty for her companion or she is not worth a rush.


On entering the state of Ohio by this route we find little to interest;
a wild uncleared hilly country,[22] which with little alteration
continues {59} till you approach St. Clairsville: the soil then is clay;
the town well placed and its buildings good and neat; land hereabouts, a
good grazing soil, is worth about twenty dollars per acre. We bought
here, out of a waggon load, half a peck of peaches for six cents, (3d.)
the peach and apple orchards are literally breaking down with fruit;
every morning we stop at the first orchard to take in as many apples as
we want for the day.

My man experienced an accident, in coming down one of these steep
hills, which might have proved worse in its consequence than it did; not
seeing him behind as usual I waited sometime for his coming up, and
began to feel uneasy about him, when we heard his waggon wheels
approaching: one of the horses had broke the hame-strap, which, throwing
the pole on one side, had precipitated the waggon and driver into some
brush-wood on the road side;--while in this situation, unable to
extricate himself, a country waggon luckily came past, and he applied to
the fellows with it for aid, which the human brutes refused without
_first_ being paid for their trouble.--From such contemplations let us
turn for relief to the variety of foliage so highly pleasing in this
part of the wilderness; we now see the Tulip tree for the first time;
the Sassafras grows thickly, and a great variety of other plants and
shrubs of which, {60} for want of botanical knowledge, I know not the

Several people clothed something like Jews with long beards have passed
us at different times on horseback; these, I was told, are a Christian
sect of charitable pilgrims styling themselves Dunkards.[23]

30th. The weather has been for some days past cooler owing to the
falling of some rain, but is again becoming warm. The sudden and violent
changes of temperature are at least as frequent on this side of the
mountains as on the eastern shores, whatever may have been asserted to
the contrary, and rain is almost always succeeded by cold. On the 24th
of August in the early morning the thermometer of Fahrenheit was at 46°,
it has since been above 80°, but again this morning has sunk to 56°.

31st. The road is covered with dust arising from the great number of
horses, waggons, &c. conveying people from a methodist camp-meeting just
held in the neighbourhood, at which it was calculated that nearly four
thousand attended; the convocation had continued for several days,
during which these people had slept upon the ground in the intervals
between praying and preaching.

_September_ 2d. At Chillicothe,[24] Ohio. Watson's {61} hotel; the wit's
mode of spelling it (Hothell) is more significant, for the beds swarm
with bugs, and the thermometer is at 86° in the shade. I called at the
land office and was shewn the map of the district; most of the sections,
except those south-east of the town, (a poor mountainous tract,) are
entered, and to my surprize, in general paid for; so this considerable
part of the state is in the hands of land speculators, under whose
baneful influence a chief part of the country remains a wilderness,
which otherwise would have been under cultivation, if open to real
settlers at the government price per acre. The British government have
in Canada acted more wisely, in offering the lands only to those who
will build, clear, and settle upon them.

5th. At Col. Woods' Log tavern, nine miles east of the town of West
Union, Ohio. The road has lately led us through a fine fertile tract of
vale, beautifully skirted by the high rocky woodland, from whence is
quarried a good hard granite for building and other purposes. The town
in this tract called Bainbridge is a new settlement,[25] but already
possesses some neat and good houses; the value of land of the district
may be estimated by the price of town lots, containing sufficient space
for a house and garden, which are as high in best situations as two
hundred dollars (forty-five {62} pounds;)--the out-field lots are from
twenty to twenty-five dollars per acre. This tract throughout appears
well watered; the only objection I heard of to it, and that perhaps no
small one to a settler, is, there being many disputed titles.

Among the growth in the wood we have lately noticed the _Papaw_, a bushy
elegant shrub with large leaves; its fruit not yet ripe. The Tulip tree
becomes more common, also more Elm and Beech, Sycamore and Buttonwood;
all these are found here of immense size, towering high in air with
stems perfectly straight. Near to Chillicothe, which is in north
latitude about 39° 15´, we saw the first tobacco cultivation; it
looked well notwithstanding the drought which now begins to be felt
every where.

Upon admiring a large strong dog the other day, his owner told me he was
very necessary on account of the wolves which are yet numerous: the dogs
here are as mixed a breed as the people, and a thorough-bred is not to
be seen. Deer are plentiful, also rackoons and squirrels; the wild
Turkey we saw yesterday, which seemed to resemble exactly our dark tame

[Illustration: Ferry at Maysville, on the Ohio]

5th. Several parties on horseback have passed us on the road, making
inquiries of the way to a methodist _preachment_, and to judge from the
{63} immense numbers that collect on these occasions fanaticism seems
to have taken deep root here.

6th. Started with my host on an expedition through the woods to visit a
farm belonging to him. We took our guns uselessly for we saw no game of
any kind, but, on arriving at the farm, got some good peaches and drank
the pure water of a fine spring; being warm, he directed me to let the
water run upon my wrists for some time before drinking, to prevent the
effects of suddenly taking cold water while heated; these sort of
cautions have probably been handed down from the native hunters. We
passed a kind of vine which has a poisonous quality,[26] the leaves
being rubbed on the skin will raise irritating blisters. The Poplar
tree, my host observed, made better shingles for covering roofs, if
painted, than the Cedar, which is commonly used unpainted; perhaps any
of the poplar tribe may do, and where a light covering is required might
be advantageously employed in England.

A large party of settlers from the state of Illinois came by, they are
returning to that of New York, to the same spot they quitted a year and
a half ago. The account they give is that a fine fertile tract of land
about forty miles from the river Illinois, and not far from its
confluence with the Mississipi, was purchased by them, and they {64}
settled upon it last summer; since which period they had lost eight of
their party by dysentery, fever and ague, and that the remainder had
determined to quit the purchase, and return with the loss of all their
time and nearly all their money. These are facts much lessening our
sanguine expectations as to the western paradise; however, I am resolved
to proceed and endeavour to ascertain the truth on all the points for
which I undertook the journey. One of the above party told me, that
when ill he had paid a fee of twenty-five dollars for one visit of a
Physician, the distance being about twenty miles; if this be true the
medical science at least must meet with sufficient encouragement.[27]

The state of Ohio took a rough leave of us down a rocky precipitous
hill, at the foot of which we found ourselves safe on the bank of the
river; and driving down to the water's edge into a _team-boat_ lately
established, were, about dark landed on the other side, and comfortably
received at a good family inn at Maysville kept by Mr. Chambers, a
sensible clever man, who came to it from Jersey State about seventeen
years ago, and {65} who has, by judgment in the purchase of land &c.,
made a good fortune for himself and family: some lots about the town,
which he bought for four hundred dollars six years since, are now worth
some thousands; such is the rapid increase in the value of property in
this country when a man makes a _good hit_.

       *       *       *       *       *

On quitting this State, through which we have travelled from Wheeling in
a south-west direction to Maysville or Limestone, (Kentucky,) the
impression it has made is not so favourable as I had been led to expect;
though our course comprehended but a small part of it, yet we passed
through the most populous districts, if we except that around
Cincinnati. Instead of a garden, I found a wilderness; land speculators
have got a considerable part in their baleful clutches to make their
market on the wants of the poor settler; but I am apt to think have been
themselves outwitted, owing to the superior attraction of the more
distant western country: yet is Ohio a desirable one, as it contains
within itself most articles of the first necessity and perhaps more;
coals in abundance, lime, stone for building, iron and other metals,
with fine rivers for transporting commodities of all kinds. The face of
{66} that part which I saw, is exceedingly hilly, in some places
approaching to mountains; but the soil in general well adapted to
grazing, and the whole strongly resembling our county of Derby upon a
gigantic scale. The northwest part of the State, an immense tract of
country, has been lately ceded by the natives to the United States,[28]
and I believe has been surveyed, allotted, and is now offering to the
public at one and a quarter dollar per acre ready money: of its
fertility much is reported, and its communication with Lake Erie, and by
it with the other lakes and the eastern markets, will render it perhaps
more desirable than the part we have travelled over.

The roads at present are altogether in a state of nature, the trees only
just chopped off about a foot from the ground, and rocks, and stones,
and gullies left to be got over as we can; no wonder then, that you see
a blacksmith's shop every two or three miles, and tavern by the side of
it to put up and spend your money while the repairs are doing; for
which, however trifling, Vulcan cannot form his mouth to any word less
than a dollar, and his friend the tavern-keeper charges an "_elevenpenny
bit_" if you have but two cents _worth_ of whisky.

As to the general want of cleanliness in the {67} taverns, of which so
much has been said _and so justly_, though the keepers of them have no
doubt a large share of the blame, yet much may be said in their defence;
the fact is, their customers are of so filthy habits that to have a
house clean is almost impossible; and though bugs swarm it is true in
the bed-rooms, beyond an English imagination, it is extremely difficult
in this warm climate to keep free from them, particularly at inns, as
they are constantly carried in the cloaths, luggage, &c., from one house
to another until many a bug, it may happen, has been as great a
traveller as Mr. Birkbeck himself. Yet do the people deserve
reprehension, for while "such things are," and sundry other unseemly
appearances are constantly, in their bed-rooms and other parts, existing
in full force; while their gardens (ill deserving the name) are over-run
with weeds, and cropped in the most slovenly manner; while a thousand
disagreeables are around them, these--what shall I call them?--slaves to
sloth, and worshippers of an idle deity of independence, will sit
lounging against the wall with arms across smoking cigars; or you shall
see the female part, lolling out of their windows gazing at nothingness.


Here at Mr. Chamber's, we staid two days, received more like guests than
as travellers at an inn; his conversation was amusing and his anecdotes
conveying much information: in his garden which is spacious and
well-managed, we ate the first ripe grapes we had met with. The town,
which seems to be fast increasing in size and importance, stands high
from the level of the river, and is screened by towering hills,
affording in the immediate neighbourhood and also up the river
situations for building that few places can surpass: the view from above
the town looking down the river is beautiful and extensive; a
considerable part of the buildings are of brick; glass works are
established, and other manufactories requiring machinery. All these
advantages however will hardly compensate with most people for its being
within the territories of a slave state. Of the determined obstinacy and
turpitude of a black boy we were here witnesses; a silver fruit-knife
had been left upon the table, and he had secreted it, the knife was soon
missed, and search made for it in vain; at length, suspicion falling
upon him, he was sent for and {69} questioned, but denied all knowledge
of the knife with an air of the greatest innocency; he was offered half
a dollar and to be screened from punishment if he would give it up, but
continued to deny that he had taken it, wishing, "his flesh might rot if
he had"--his pockets were at length examined; and the knife and an apple
dropt together from one of them, upon which the young rogue declared
that the person who searched him had put it there, and a terrible
beating which I fear he got, did not in the least make him prevaricate.

[Illustration: Maysville, on the Ohio, Kentucky]

We took leave of our host and hostess not without some regret, and, as
we slowly paced up the long hill which rises immediately from the town,
looked back frequently to view the beautiful river scenery from the
different points it offered: a turn at the top suddenly presented on all
sides a cleared, well cultivated, and inclosed country; the road was
good, the day beautiful, and we bowled along through plentiful crops of
Indian corn, rejoicing that we had escaped the wilderness, and thinking
we had really entered upon the garden of the United States. After a few
miles of good road however these pleasant ideas were shaken out by an
absolute rock, upon which with but little intermission we rattled for
near twenty miles, passing through a place called Blue Licks.[29] At its
salt springs {70} the deer and buffaloe used formerly to be found in
immense herds; it is now a watering place, the resort of invalids: yet
let not the English reader here picture to himself either Bath,
Cheltenham, or Tunbridge Wells, but a few dispersed log huts and two
taverns of the same description. Many of the men here wear, instead of a
coat, a short cloak, a little resembling that part of the old English
dress, which if they knew how to carry with any grace would look well.

The drought is now exceedingly great, and we have reports of much stock
dying to the south of this state for want of water; we therefore see the
country at as unfavourable a time as possible; yet, under these
disadvantages, the grass is really green, a circumstance which proves
the strong natural fertility of the soil, also shewn by the spontaneous
growth of the white clover among the trees of the uncleared forest land
where it has been grazed. Of this grazed forest the farmers assert that
it will not, when cleared, broke up and sown, produce so much corn by
one third per acre as that which has not been grazed, and many of them
consequently shut up their forest land from all cattle and even from


A little black boy was playing upon the ground, at the tavern-door with
a dog; I pointed to them and said to the landlord, (a very civilized
man,) "Do you make christians of these?" "Oh no."--"You name them
without the clergyman?" "Oh yes; we sometimes give them one name and
then alter it for another:"--"And does not your church find fault with
you sometimes for such neglect?"

"No, they never think of such things."

"And when they die you throw them into the ground without further

_Answer_,--Always let them lie just where it happens--I suppose, you do
not do so in your country; do you?

_Self_,--Certainly not; we think very differently upon the subject; that
child would there be free, the moment it set foot upon our shores.

_Landlord_,--"Oh, you mean the _negre_; I thought you were speaking of
the dog all the time. Yes; we christen _them_; but we do not let them
eat with us, only the Quakers let them eat with them!"

This man's kitchen presented a picture which is general with some
exceptions throughout the {72} slave country, a description of it will
therefore serve for all the rest. Behold, a dark log building with a
floor of mud, upon which a number of little black children are at all
times to be seen crawling, while others are perhaps lying without the
door sunning themselves; all mostly without any covering whatever: these
are the progeny of the cook and other slaves, and are destined for sale
or to supply the places of others. A quick lively little black girl, of
about nine years of age, waited here with such spirit and so cleverly
upon the guests that she attracted our notice; and upon praising her
dexterity to her master he told us, that he had more than once refused
three hundred dollars which had been offered for her.--The kitchen,
besides being made the daily black-nursery, is also their general
dormitory: at night, they creep round the warm embers and huddled
together sleep in the contaminated atmosphere of this Augean stable, in
the midst of the dirt and abominations of which the traveller's meat is
prepared, and served more decently than might be expected; after
escaping (_perhaps_) the fingers of the poor little creatures, who,
watching their opportunity, rise from under the dressers, pilfer the
meat and dip their fingers in gravies.

The ovens are, very conveniently for this warm {73} climate, built apart
from the house in the open air. Mine host, notwithstanding the above
mistake, was a man of very respectable manners, and his wife, a
lady-like woman, presided at the supper which was even elegantly set out
to a company most heterogeneous. Opposite to me, a young fellow seated
himself, without his coat and in his dirty shirt sleeves of at least
seven days' wear, and, not shewing the least of that shyness which such
a man would experience in England, played away with his knife and fork
perfectly at his ease: indeed, the clumsy gait and bent body of our
peasant is hardly ever seen here, every one walks erect and easy; a
plainness of dress and coarseness of the texture amounting to vulgarity,
blunt discourse, in short, the manners of the herd, are _affected_ by
the few, and all mix without any seeming distinction. To have objected
to the company of the dirty fellow just mentioned would have probably
ended in a "_rough and tumble_," and the loss of an eye, as it is not an
uncommon accomplishment to be a good hand at "_gouging_." This brings to
mind a story of a fellow who had been so terribly mauled at a "rough and
tumble" that a man, compassionating his condition, said, "you have come
off badly this time I doubt?" "Have I," says he; triumphantly shewing
from his pocket {74} at the same time an eye, which he had extracted
during the combat, and preserved for a trophy.


The approach to this town is for several miles along good road, and
through a country much improving in natural advantages and cultivation.
Lexington has been often enough described; thirty-five years ago, it is
said to have contained but one hundred houses; it has now several
thousands, and many of them very handsome; more to say, it has some good
and wide streets, with well-paved broad foot-ways of brick, and a market
street, only in part finished, upon the model of that at Philadelphia:
its Court-house, a miserable brick building, stands well and airy in a
large square which may some time or other be neat: in and near the town
is a manufactory or two. The College or public seminary[31] is well
situated at the eastern entrance of the town; it is a handsome building
but within in a bad state; at present there are about one hundred
pupils. The inn, or tavern to which I was recommended, and where I met
with much civility and attention; had any thing rather than cleanliness
or comfort, {75} but the charges as high as if both had been to the
utmost wish;[32] myriads of bugs as usual; we literally found rest in
getting up, and much mental relief in quitting the town, though strongly
persuaded to stay that we might behold the horsemanship of a Mr. West
and his troop from England!

One circumstance however should make me remember Lexington with some
satisfaction; with the improvidence very common to travellers my
resources had not been calculated properly, and I began to find that the
purse would be emptied before we should gain the place of the next
expected remittance. In this dilemma I sought the residence of the
Cashier of the United States branch Bank, and stated the case to him;
upon which he in the most gentlemanly manner cashed my draft: to the
same gentleman on my return I was again beholden for assistance in
managing an exchange of notes, and he may rest assured I shall not soon
forget his urbanity.


The approach, as well as the country immediately {76} around this
capital of Kentucky, is beautiful; the size of the town may be
considered about that of one of our better market towns: some of the
private houses very well built of brick (the general material here) and
very handsomely fitted up within. The building in which the senate of
thirty-one Members, and the body of Representatives of about ninety,
meet, is a fine object on entering the town from the western bridge; the
Court-house is a very neat building and the whole effect renders it a
far preferable residence to Lexington, except perhaps with a view to
trade; and of that there seems very little. We found here an excellent
tavern and hotel for families lately established by Colonel Taylor,[33]
one of the old revolutionary officers: the building and interior
would not disgrace our own capital, and our meals were served with every
comfort and polite attention from his lady.

[Illustration: Frankfort, Kentucky]

Upon inquiry both at Lexington and Frankfort I find that the price of
land is about one-sixth of what it was three years ago; good land which
then sold round Lexington for two hundred dollars per acre, may be
bought now even for twenty-five,--and considerable tracts lying between
the above towns for five and six dollars per acre.

{77} On leaving Frankfort about a mile, the western road leads winding
up a considerable hill, from whence we were gratified with a fine view
of the town and the surrounding woodland scenery: the day being
beautiful, and time allowing, I determined to put up at the first house
where we could find shelter for the horses, and return to sketch it:
accordingly, we made up to a very respectable looking farm-house and
asking permission to put the horses into a stable, it was granted; while
this was doing I was in courtesy thanking the owner and expressing hopes
that we should not put him to any inconvenience, when the inhospitable
brute suddenly stopped me with "you need not be so full of your thanks
for I mean to charge you for it!"--To be sure I lost no more time in
compliments but, returning to the view, finished the sketch, and after a
pleasant walk renewed my journey paying for shelter only above half a
dollar; however I first lectured them until they were perhaps a little
ashamed, but they took the money and we drove on, descanting upon the
virtue of hospitality, to


A handsome town, of which the chief part is in one street. Here are two
good hotels at one {78} of which (Allen's, a good family house,) we met
with every attention on our return; but now, a cleaner looking house
farther on inviting us, and being repelled by a crowd of travellers of
all descriptions and variety of dress, smoking and lounging at the doors
of the other two, we drove past; forgetting "farther on you may fare
worse," which we certainly did.[35]

On settling an innkeeper's account I said that if we might judge by the
charges, a man must soon become rich in his business; which he
acknowledged would be the case were it not for bad notes and bilking
customers, anecdotes of whom he told several: one young man after
running a bill of three hundred dollars rode out one morning, as
accustomed, to take the air and _forgot to return_; others have watched
the departure of the steam vessels and set off to New Orleans, having
_reckoned without their host_, so that the losses are immense. These
hints and others, I did not unfortunately hear until on my return, or I
should not probably have been induced to trust to American honour in way
of business so much as I did to my cost.

At all these houses a regular clerk and bar-keeper {79} is maintained
with whom the traveller _goes_ to settle, for a bill is never brought as
in England; no ringing of the bell here and, when the waiter comes
bowing in, "Desire my bill immediately"--no; that would not suit with

The bed of the river is here of vast breadth, and during the spring must
afford a grand view when the waters are struggling with and rushing over
the extensive rocky falls; at present a very small channel is sufficient
for its reduced stream; people are employed on the dry bed in deepening
the intended course for the boats, arks, &c. when the waters shall next
rise to afford them a passage. Travellers of curiosity can now traverse
on wheels, with a guide, the greatest part of the rocks over which in a
few months a mighty body of waters will roll with tremendous force.


Three miles beyond Louisville the western road again brings you to the
Ohio; and by a very ill conducted and apparently rather dangerous ferry
we were wafted over, (after waiting for our turn with many waggons, &c.
above three {80} hours,) and entered the State of Indiana at the town of
New Albany;[36] where we found a very comfortable reception at the
excellent family tavern kept by Dr. Hales, a physician. We had hitherto
been frequently received by Representatives, Colonels, Majors, 'Squires,
and Captains; these now sometimes give place to the medical profession.
An American may be proud of his liberty, but the pride of a gentleman
never stands in the way of a profitable speculation; idleness only is
here a disgrace, and if a man of liberal education finds that his
profession will not sufficiently remunerate him it is thought right that
he should seek profit in trade.

I had quitted the State of Kentucky with impressions in its favour far
stronger than that of Ohio had produced;--the climate is fine, the land
fertile and well cleared, and inclosed; the houses well built, and the
landscape as we passed frequently beautiful. But this is a slave State;
and as this degraded situation of a part of our species has excited the
horror of philanthropists on our side the globe, I will stop to say a
few words on the subject; my observations being understood to be
confined solely to the few slave States I have seen, and disclaiming, at
the same time, all theoretic approbation of the institution. I have
read, as others, with feelings of disgust {81} and injured pride of
humanity, of estates to be sold with so many slaves upon them; and of
the floggings unmerciful which authors have related; and, drawing
conclusions from such statements, I expected to see the slave, in misery
and wretchedness, bent down with labour and hard-living, but was very
agreeably surprised to find the reverse. Slavery is not here what it
_may be_ in our Colonies and perhaps, as I believe it is still worse, in
the old quarters of the globe. By the spirit of the laws the black is
here _indirectly_ benefitted: though a slave, he is suffered to
associate with his fellows, and one day in the seven (Sunday) is set
apart for society with each other; and though there may be instances of
cruel punishment, yet so numerous are the blacks becoming that it will
soon be dangerous, if the time is not already arrived, for such
instances to be repeated. And here lies the real objection to these
slave States; the slaves begin to know their own strength, and probably
would not long bear oppression. To see their well-proportioned figures
easy and unconstrained, and lively countenances, a stranger might be led
to think that _they_ were in fact the masters of the ill-formed,
emaciated, care-worn whites, were it not for the fine clothing of the
latter: in short they are well clothed, fed, and taken care of, and {82}
so numerous that I believe they are felt already in many places rather a
burthen on the community than an advantage. As to the work they do, as
far as I have had an opportunity to see, I should say it is so little,
that an English labourer would with ease accomplish more in a day than
two of them; and excepting a few of the _old school_, it is the general
sentiment of the best informed Americans that they should be better off
without slaves. But the sins of the fathers have fallen upon their sons,
and, as far as human foresight may look into futurity, they never can
get rid of the effects; they must always have an immense black
population to support, unless indeed the period shall ever arrive when
the latter shall change stations and _support them_.

We now meet at least as many parties going eastward as on the western
route, which might be rather discouraging to those not accustomed to
American restless search after gain; in this, all considerations of
comfort, or attachment to home are lost. He makes a pig-inclosure of
logs, a stable of the same, open to all the winds and to the poultry,
and if his log house will keep out the worst of the weather it is
sufficient: and thus, with such buildings, with just as much corn and
fother as will keep him, his family, and his stock, the {83} settler
passes his indolent days; smoking under the shed of his habitation, and
waiting for some good offer for what he terms his improvement; when he
immediately loads his waggon with his furniture and family, and without
the shadow of regret leaves his abode to seek some other equally

This State in respect to cultivation bears not at present any comparison
with its neighbour, but in natural beauties far exceeds it. The variety
of trees, shrubs, and flowers is great; the colours of the latter
gratifying the eye in all the gay luxuriance of nature;--the timber
trees grow to an enormous size; I measured an Oak which at four feet
from the ground was twenty-four feet in circumferance, but there are
larger trees here. We passed (_chemin faisant_) through several new
settlements called by the people Towns, and which indeed may soon
deserve the name; roads, bridges, mills for sawing, and other
buildings--every thing in short, goes on with that spirit of enterprise
which, in spite of poverty, is shewn by the people of America.

Paoli stands very pleasantly: Hindostan, on a branch of the White river
communicating with the Ohio by the Wabash, also is _to be_ a town of
great trade: Washington is perhaps the worst situated for trade[37] but
the land around it is {84} very fertile. There are also many other
intended to-be towns, but at present containing about half a dozen log
huts, such as Greensville, Brownsville, Fredericksberg, &c. &c. called
thus after the first proprietor of the land, who, if he is so fortunate
as to make choice of a favourable situation, rapidly makes his fortune
by the quick influx of settlers; but this is not always the case and
there are many "Villes" and "Bergs" which will probably long remain as
we found them.

At Hindostan I met with an adventure which, considering how little
respect is paid to any law, I might perhaps as well have avoided. At a
miserable log tavern there, kept open (and to all the winds) by a
Colonel, the entertainment both for man and horse was the worst we had
lately met with--the hay it was pretended was too far off to fetch; and
a few heads of Indian corn was all we could procure for the horses. For
ourselves, after a miserable meal, we found a bed laid in an out-house,
which also served for lumber-room and larder. All this travellers must
learn chearfully to bear, but another evil, which too frequently
follows, the high charges, it is not so easy to pay with good humour: in
this case I ventured, as I had hitherto done with good effect, to reason
against one or two of the items in a quiet delicate way fit for the ears
{85} of an independent; but here it did not succeed, for my Colonel
turned upon his heel saying, if I objected to his charges he would take
nothing at all, and away he went. I had a great mind to take him at his
word on account of his treatment; but after waiting for his return some
time, with my horses at the door, I at length left with the Colonel's
lady more than sufficient to defray the proper legal charge according to
the rate made out by their magistrates, to which however few of them pay
much attention: well, we then drove on, but had not got to the river
side before a lad was sent after me with the money, for the Colonel had
in fact been hiding to see what I would do, and coming out from his hole
to hear what had been left for him, preferred venting his spite even
before his money. I now determined to see how this would end, and
therefore put the money into my pocket, drove down to the river side,
and leaving my name and address at a store there for him, crossed the
ford and proceeded. An hour or two after, my gentleman passed me on
horseback, pale, "spiteful and wrathful," and we kept a good look out, a
little apprehensive of being _rifled at_ from behind the trees; so we
got the arms out ready; and drove on with circumspection to the town of
Washington about eighteen miles from {86} Hindostan. Here he had
collected more people than I should have supposed possible in the short
time, and had prepared his dramatis personæ, one of whom came
immediately to arrest me; with this fellow I went to attend another whom
they called a 'Squire, a whisky seller. At this respectable tribunal of
the wilderness I stated my case with some difficulty from the noise and
opposition, and expecting as much justice as I found, the 'Squire said
the bill must be paid without referring to the rates; and as curiosity
not resistance was my object, I at length paid it with about a quarter
dollar, no great fee for his worship. Upon this, the Colonel was so
elated with his victory that to shew his generosity, he said, he would
treat his friends with half a dozen of wine and give the amount of his
bill away; being satisfied with "shewing _the Englishman_ that he was
not to be imposed upon;" and it was in fact this rancor against an
Englishman, (not the first time I heard, it had been shewn by him in the
present way;) and which indeed is very general, that had actuated him
from our arrival at his log palace.

From the effects of wine added to the elation of spirits from victory, I
fully expected the affair would not end yet, and, determined not to
avoid any thing they might intend, I paced {87} before the tavern and
mixed with the people in the general room; but whether the wine was put
off for a glass round of the 'Squire's whiskey, or that it was swallowed
quickly I know not, in a very short time they all quietly departed, and
not a word or look could be construed insulting. This we must own would
not have been the case while such feelings were afloat in some other
countries, and was either very much to their credit or occasioned by a
party against their proceedings, several of whom told me they had acted
wrong and illegally.

While the towns are rapidly rising into being and improvement, the
inhabitant of the wood, vegetating in his log cabin, seems to remain
without increase of comforts, as he is without emulation to spur him on
to obtain them. Being now beyond the boundaries of any regular tavern,
necessity threw us upon seeking shelter for the night, in several of
such habitations, open to every breath of the winds without, and
swarming within with fleas, bugs, and other vermin: these are called
"houses of entertainment;" they are known to those who cross this at
present wilderness under such appellatives as "Preacher Biram's,"
"Preacher Blair's," "Widow More's," &c. At one of these, where, except a
wretched shed behind for a kitchen, {88} there was only one room for all
the purposes of life, we had put up for the night, and after such a
supper as the house afforded, had lain down to endeavour to rest; not
sleep, for that, not to mention the company above alluded to, would have
been sufficiently prevented by the knives and forks of my host and his
family at supper in the adjoining shed. After having watched for the end
of this, with some hope that we might get sleep, and hearing at length
the welcome sounds of putting away, I had just addressed myself to
Morpheus, when a general chorus in all keys suddenly burst upon my
ears--they had commenced at eleven o'clock at night their evening's
devotion, put off perhaps by our arrival: when the psalm was ended,
which was sung _a pleine gorge_, the preacher read a long homily, which
took up near an hour more, and which finished the business, and quiet
seemed likely to reign, when just as I had composed myself suddenly some
one jogged my shoulders; it was my hostess come to tell me that two
gentlemen, one a Dr. *****, and both particular friends of theirs had
arrived, and wished to have supper in the room, however that it need not
at all disturb us, as they were very nice gentlemen. However I strongly
objected to this proposal; and after some demur {89} the gentlemen
condescended to take their supper in the place which had just served for
the domestic chapel and kitchen, and which I believe afterwards was the
general dormitory of the party; after keeping it up very jovially until
one or two o'clock of the morning, by which time the bugs, assisted by
the light troops, had stormed and taken all my defences, and for the
rest of the time effectually "murdered sleep."

The reader will not here mistake so far as to suppose I mean to treat
lightly domestic worship, an observance for which we should all be
better, and for which I could not but respect my host, hoping he was
sincere in it; nor should the traveller be soured by the charges after
such _entertainment_, as he is too apt to be; but he should consider
that he had met with the best reception in the power of the people to
give: their only beds are given up for his convenience, while they
probably sleep on a bench or on the ground, and if money is the view
chiefly in all this, let money be freely given to discharge the
obligation. I was angered with much more reason at my host's attempt to
inveigle my man-servant from me with offers of twenty dollars per month,
his board, &c.: these religious people are but too apt to disregard
moral conduct as a thing altogether of {90} this world: many similar
offers had I believe been made to him, which sufficiently proves the
scarcity of active hands, and that such need not fear to want

Long before we approach the neighbourhood of Vincennes the woodland
opens here and there into what are termed _barrens_; these are not
generally flat but undulated, and covered with stunted oak, low
beautifull shrubs, &c.; belted in with trees so fancifully disposed that
one is apt to imagine the hand of art to have been employed: the land is
not considered in general as of even second-rate quality, but it is dry
and healthy, and, when cultivated, brings good corn if the summer is at
all favourable; indeed, under the present drought I saw some fair crops
at the few spots where _squatters_ had fixed themselves. These barrens
increase in size and number as we proceed westward, until they end in
the so much talked of _prairie_ or wild meadows; in the midst of one of
which, and upon the Great Wabash river stands the pleasant town of
Vincennes, upon a sandy gravel sub-soil with excellent springs of water.
Before we arrived at Vincennes, however, an adventure awaited us. We had
baited at a house which we were told was but six miles from the town,
and forgetting there is in these latitudes no twilight, had {91} staid
too long, and in consequence found ourselves in complete darkness just
on entering upon a large prairie; the road, which was nothing more than
wheel-tracks could no longer be discerned, and I was obliged to direct
two of our party to precede the carriage and find the way by feeling,
not by seeing the track. In this manner we had not gone far when the
guides stopped, declaring they heard the growl of some wild beast before
them,--bears, wolves, and panthers, all of which I had just heard of,
immediately came to mind, and I pulled up the horses to listen; when a
tremendous roar was heard directly, succeeded by another which brought
our guides, who were females, back upon the waggons, declaring that the
animal approached. Very unwilling for the engagement, I then cocked my
pistols, and calling to the man to do the same awaited for some time
the attack; but finding the enemy did not come forward, I ventured to
drive on, and soon discovered the object of our alarm to be a bull,
which had probably been as much discomfited at our approach as we at his
roars. We now resumed our stations, and though rain added to the
dreariness of our situation, I had the satisfaction to find that all
acted with spirit. After a doubtful march, which seemed of much longer
duration than it really {92} was, we at length discovered some lights at
a distance, and shortly after a horseman passed who gave us the welcome
assurance that we were in a right direction; so completely dark was it
however that even when we approached the town we could not find any
track by which to enter it. In this dilemma, amidst a pouring rain, we
were again aided by a good-natured Irishman, whose house we by chance
came up against; for he mounted along side of my driver and piloted us
to a tavern, glad enough to be relieved from cold, wet, dirt, and
darkness, a good preparation for the enjoyment of a comfortable supper
and bed, free from unpleasant bed-fellows.


This settlement, founded by some French families from Canada, though one
year older than Philadelphia cannot like it boast of great extent and
opulence;[38] it has not yet by any means lost its cabin appearance,
though the beneficial effects of the New Orleans market are beginning to
be very apparent; and good brick dwellings are fast erecting in the best
situations, behind which its log huts are hiding their diminished {93}
heads. A very good building of brick intended for a public school, has
been erected by the aid of ample funds left by an individual for the
purpose; yet, owing to strange neglect, the institution is suffered to
go to decay and no master has been provided. A handsome house belonging
to a General Harrison, the chief proprietor here, is also in a
dilapidated state, the General having left it to reside elsewhere.[39]
Further on, by the water-side, we visited a steam mill upon an extensive
scale; which grinds corn, saws timber into boards, and cards wool and
cotton; a most beneficial establishment for the surrounding country,
though I was told, not just now a good concern to the proprietors.
These, with two middling taverns, and a few substantial houses lately
erected constitute the chief buildings; the rest are a heap of wooden
huts occupied by traders in skins, and various other things with the
natives. The Wabash, a fine river, floats the produce of this commerce
and of the land, down to the Ohio, from whence it is conveyed to New
Orleans chiefly in steam boats which return laden with goods for their
market at an enormous profit. To elucidate a little the nature of this
trade I enter a few memoranda.

Indian corn or maize is bought here of the farmer at about a quarter
dollar the bushel, soon {94} after harvest; in spring it is sent down
the river to New Orleans under a freight of another quarter dollar per
bushel; and is sold there from seventy-five cents (three shillings and
sixpence) to a dollar. Wheat is bought at a price about sixpence or
sevenpence the bushel dearer than maize, and sells proportionally

For a return lading, Salt is bought at half a dollar per bushel, and
sells at Vincennes from two $ to two and a quarter $ ditto.

  Loaf sugar sells at half a dollar, (2s. 3d.) per lb.
  Brown sugar sells at 37-1/2 cents, (1s. 8d.) per lb.
  Coffee at 75 cents, (3s. 6d.) per lb.
  Tea at from 2-1/2 $ to 3-1/2 $ per lb.

and other groceries, many of which like the above are bought for
considerably less than half their selling price, in proportion: of iron
and drugs I could not obtain the price at New Orleans; but of the profit
on the iron the reader may judge by the price I paid to a blacksmith for
eight new horse-shoes, steel toes, and eight removes; the bill for which
was about ten dollars,--above two guineas! I remonstrated and appealed
in vain, the bill was paid; yet I cannot think that such a price is
charged to the inhabitants among themselves; but there is no justice and
little law but one's own arm; and {95} a man must be fain to yield
before a nest of ---- who join in plucking a stranger; indeed, he may
think himself well off if they are contented with a little plucking at
his purse, for instances are not unfrequent of individuals among them
being "rifled" for having rendered themselves obnoxious; which they do
equally if they are too good (_honest_) or too bad (_deep_) for them; or
not holding themselves sufficiently upon a level.

I did not learn the exact offence for which a deed of this nature was
perpetrated with impunity at a recent period not many miles from this
place, in the Prairie country, but the facts are as follows:--A party
proposed to each other coolly to go and shoot neighbour ***** who had
behaved ill to them at sundry times; it was agreed upon; they went to
his field, found the old man at plough and with unerring aim laid him
dead!--Mr. Flower himself related to me this atrocious affair, and I
did not hear that any punishment was ever talked of. Such is the state
of things in this western paradise! A beautiful garden indeed it is from
the hands of nature, and with but a little industry a most desirable
country to dwell in ... with a people who do not shoot each other: but
for a man of orderly habits and civilized manners, to leave his every
comfort, plunge into this wilderness, {96} and sit himself down among a
set of half savages far more expert that he can be in every thing
essential to such a life!--'tis a strange anomaly, and I think, "cannot
come to good." The young, the enterprising, the man who seeks a fortune,
may find a field for successful exertion--with great circumspection in
undertakings, and great good luck in escaping bad notes and bad debts,
large profits may accrue to industry; but let no one, who already may
possess the comforts of life, seek fortune, freedom or bliss in this
western speculation; for if he does, the chances are great that he will
lose all.

Though the profits of trade here may be even more favourable than above
stated, yet are there great risks, which ought to be taken into the
contemplation of those who may be inclined, by these accounts, to the
enterprise. Among the risks, one of the greatest arises from the not
uncommon accident of boats sinking, as no care however great, will at
all times prevent them from running upon hidden trunks of trees, when
they almost to a certainty go down if heavy laden; and in such cases all
the perishable part of the cargo is either lost or much damaged: a
catastrophe not to be guarded against, as in Europe, by insurance; there
not being at present any means of effecting it here. A more {97} safe
speculation seems to be that of the builder, and as far as I could
learn, equally profitable; the house in which I was, built of boards,
and which was said to cost about two hundred and twenty-five pounds
sterling, gains a rent of two hundred and fifty dollars clear of all
deductions. There are I have little doubt, many other channels of
profitable employment, and upon the whole it may be said, that this town
offers a station for young men of prudence, spirit, and a little
capital, where they may make a fortune; it is also a dry healthy
delightful country. As to the morals and religion of the inhabitants, I
cannot say that with respect to either they appear in a very favourable
light, if one may judge from any outward observances of the latter, or
conduct respecting the first, in affairs of business. Sunday is so
little marked as a day of rest or religious duty that I believe no
attention is paid to it, (except by the French catholics, who have a
wooden chapel;) and a stranger, who should arrive on a Sunday, might
well be led to conclude that it was a colony of Jews rather than of
Christians, and that their sabbath had been kept the day before;
tradesmen I saw carrying goods; farmers _hauled_ their corn; and the
water-mill went merrily round.

The price of labour is apparently high; a carpenter {98} or bricklayer
receives two dollars and his board per day; but as competition increases
I will not recommend the mechanic to rely upon getting such wages: and
if he should, he must take notice that the high price he must pay for
most articles of necessity, will bring his wages down nearer to a level
with other places than he might at first suppose; to be sure, there is
here less competition at present.

Having examined the town, and both ourselves and horses sufficiently
rested, we made the necessary inquiries and preparations to proceed to
the English Prairie in the Illinois State; from thence intending to
visit the German Settlement called Harmony on the Wabash, and returning
to winter at Vincennes. Receiving however, meanwhile, a pressing
invitation to accompany a gentleman to his country house about twenty
miles distant, it being represented as little deviating from our
intended route, I accepted of it; the more inclined perhaps, because of
his pleasing manners, and his being a native of the northern part of my
own country. Having however a little apprehension as to the fitness of
the roads we were going to pass over for wheels, I inquired of him
whether they would permit a carriage to travel; and all my doubts were
removed by his answer that "they were {99} as good as the town street,"
where we happened to be standing: we shall soon see how accurate his
account turned out to be.

It was a beautiful day in the latter part of September, that we started
on this expedition in my Dearborn; our friend on horseback leading the
way. We drove along a good turf road across the fine plain of Vincennes,
fully expecting to get on as smoothly and pleasantly as a gig party on a
Sunday excursion along what are called the "green lanes," around our own
metropolis;--we were not long suffered to enjoy these pleasing
anticipations however, for our guide suddenly turned into the wood and
the wheels came bump upon our old acquaintance a stump road.--While we
are getting on slowly upon it, I will just give a slight description how
such tracts are formed;--imagine a woodland in a state of nature:
through this, guiding themselves by compass, people get on as they can,
chopping a piece of bark from the trees in the line, which they call
"blazing," as a direction to those who follow with tools to cut down the
trees between those blazed, which they do at about a foot to a foot and
a half from the ground, leaving the stumps and brushwood standing. In a
short time this latter gets worn away, but the stumps remain a long
while; and between these, horsemen, waggons, and other {100} carriages
proceed, steering between, or bumping upon them, which is at times
unavoidable, and week after week I have driven to my own astonishment
how escaping, winding about among these stumps, progressing at most not
more than three miles an hour. Were the "four in hand" thought I, to try
their skill on these roads, many a wreck would soon strew the ground.

But to return to our adventure; for our companion calls, and presses me
to urge forward the horses; advice needless to give, for alas! we could
not adopt it. The small track became more blind; our guide appeared to
be confused; and not a little to my dismay and vexation, instead of road
as good as Vincennes town-street, we were at length entangled in
woodland; brushing through breaking boughs, going in and out through
bogs, and lifting the wheels over dead fallen trees as we could. In this
situation, as difficult to retreat as advance, I knew not what to do and
began to suspect some foul play; but recollecting the respectable
character our companion bore at Vincennes, I dismissed the thought, and
being both myself and servant armed I resolved to try to proceed; so
calling in a peremptory tone to our friend in advance to keep in sight,
for I fancied he seemed to be uneasy at his situation, and he at times
{101} disappeared, I asked him, not if this was his excellent road--I
was too vexed for that, but how much farther such difficulties would be
found: he answered not far; that we were near the river, and that we
would cross it at a nearer ferry than he had at first intended; adding,
he would ride on and get the boat ready, he vanished, after pointing the
way we were to follow.

I now thought he was gone, and had left us in the lurch; however we got
on by degrees, and at length had the pleasure to see the river side, and
our friend waiting for us with the crazy ferry boat, into which with
some difficulty we got the carriage. Our difficulties were now to cease
he said, and a good road the rest of the way was to reward our
exertions; for better assurance of these good tidings I endeavoured to
obtain some information from the boatmen as we crossed the Wabash; but
they proved to be Canadian French, and we did not sufficiently
understand their "_patois_" to gain any satisfactory account from them.
We landed safely; and after rising the river bank, actually did find a
tolerable good woodland road for some miles, until it approached without
much hinderance a small settlement, dignified with the name of Palmyra;
a place which to all appearance need not hope for the prosperity so
{102} much as it may fear the lot, of its prototype. Here we found a log
tavern, however, and we halted to consider what to do; for the day was
closing and I remembered there would be no twilight. In this dilemma I
again suffered myself to be guided by our companion, who represented,
that at this log inn we should not find any accommodations, either for
ourselves or horses beyond shelter, that his house was now but three
short miles further upon a good road; and that he had provided every
thing for our comfort as well as that of our cattle: yielding to these
pressing arguments, the rather too as he seemed a little chagrined at my
hesitation, I once more trotted on, which the horses could well do, for
about half a mile beyond the settlement. But how shall I describe what
followed! Our guide turned again into the wood calling out that it was
his _private road_: and private indeed we found it, for we soon lost all
track and light together.

There was now no retreating, so summoning up more resolution from
despair, I urged and encouraged my good little horses, and they dragged
the carriage at the constant risk of our necks, through brushwood, over
fallen trees, down and up precipitous banks and deep gullies, which I
could scarcely discern, and which if I could have seen should not have
attempted; {103} until I became so enraged at the man's deception that
had he given the least provocation I believe I should have shot him;
however he luckily avoided this by keeping a little in advance, and
mildly calling out now and then to direct the way saying we were very
near; and indeed, long after day had departed, we halted at a gate. Here
he advised us to get out and walk, as the way, up to the house for
wheels was circuitous; out therefore we got, when I perceived
approaching, carrying a light, a human figure in form, dress, and manner
as wild and complete a ruffian as ever Shakspeare pourtrayed.

To this being, whose appearance, and the friendly shake of the hand
given him by my conductor, did not tend to relieve my mind from
suspicions of I knew not what, I was fain to give up my horses; he
returned a surly answer in French to Mr. ***** who had said something I
did not understand, and receiving the reins from me jumped into the
carriage and drove away; but not alone, for I directed my man to go with
him; a service he probably did not much relish, but which in my then
state of mind I thought necessary. I now explored my way towards a
light, and soon came up to a portico which had the appearance of being
built in good style: here too I had the satisfaction to {104} meet the
carriage, which I had no sooner come up to, than a voice which seemed of
stentorian power hailed me from the portico with a torrent of words,
amongst which what struck me most was, "You have got here but you will
never get away again!" My host who had approached to press me to enter
his house, seemed to put this off with a smile _not quite easy_; and I
declined quitting my horses being determined to see them into the
promised stable; but upon expressing this intention the ill omened voice
again thundered, "Oh, there is no place for your horses but this,--they
will be safe enough,--they cannot _get out_."--"But they are warm," said
I; "have had a long pull ever since noon without bait, and will catch
cold out of a stable." "Can't help it" was the answer; but just after he
added, "to be sure there is a log place, but it has no roof!" My host
now again returned to invite me in; and under his assurance that the
horses should have every care taken of them, and knowing that my own man
would do his best for them, I reluctantly gave up the point; mounted a
flight of steps, crossed the Piazza, and entered a room not calculated
to make amazement cease. It was spacious, lofty, well-proportioned, and
finished in every part in the very best style of workmanship: a good
wood fire {105} blazed upon a beautiful polished grate, the
appertenances to which were equally handsome; a marble chimney piece,
the tables, chairs, the supper table, and lights supported in handsome
branches, all which is commonly seen in good houses, was here,
surrounded by primæval wilderness; an accomplishment so wonderful that
it seemed not to be within any power short of those of necromancy, and
when my mind glanced back upon the way we had been led, I might fairly
suspect the person who had done it to have some credit at the court of
his Satanic Majesty. Such thoughts however were well dispelled by a neat
supper, served in a manner corresponding with the appearance of the
place; and by the aid of some excellent wine our spirits began to flow
as the impressions of the day's adventures were, for a while, lost in
social converse. Our host I found to be a man of the world; knowing
perfectly well how, and practising that which he knew, to be agreeable;
full of anecdote, which he gave well; and after keeping it up to a late
hour we retired to rest in a handsome adjoining chamber.

Rising with the early sun, refreshed from the harass of the preceding
day, I walked out anxious to explore the lodgings of my four-footed
companions, not much expecting to find that "every {106} care" had been
taken of them; indeed after a considerable search I at length discovered
the place of their confinement, in an inclosure of logs without the
slightest roof; of course they looked piteously, for the nights had
become rather keen and frosty. Perhaps it may be thought by some readers
that too much has been said of the dumb servants; but let those who
think so either take a journey, during which their lives shall
constantly depend upon the steadiness of their horses or at least let
these objectors reflect, that during such daily acquaintance a sort of
mute friendly understanding takes place between the driver and his
cattle;--they will then no longer wonder at his anxiety for their
welfare. And here let us bring this strange adventure to a close; we
passed two days very pleasantly, during which we met with the most
attentive hospitality, and I am unwilling to search for other motive;
though, perhaps, it might principally be to induce me to engage in aid
of a scheme to build mills upon a favourable situation on the Wabash
river: this I mention, in order to take the opportunity of cautioning
emigrants against engaging in the schemes, generally delusive, of the
old settler or the American. However plausible they may appear, let him
be the more cautious; it may happen that {107} they answer--some do so;
but nine individuals in ten of those who are drawn in are ruined
notwithstanding; for they get wheedled out of their property by trick
and chicanery, which the American laws too much favour.

Let those therefore who come into this country, and bring capital with a
view to settle, take good care not to be in the least haste to lay it
out: let them keep their money in their pockets and view a speculation
on all sides; nay, turn it inside out before they venture a dollar in
it: and above all, let the emigrant distrust his own judgment, and ever
keep in mind that the American upon his own soil is in business and
speculation an overmatch for Europeans. One material reason for which
is, that he is not at all nice or scrupulous about the means, so he
attains his end; which is money,--money,--for ever, money. It is
therefore much safer for an emigrant to embark in business by himself
than to trust his property in partnership; in the first case, he may at
least know how he is going on; in the last, it is probable he never will
until too late.

An instance of the result of delusive expectations, may be seen in the
man who has been an inmate a long time past with my present host, and
from whom the words of ill-omen proceeded on the night of our arrival.
He was {108} born in a manufacturing district in England and brought up
a builder and cabinet-maker: discontented, as truly too many have had
reason to be, with the remunerations of his business he embarked, with
his wife and a decent capital in money, for America. Set ashore upon its
coast, he found not his sanguine expectations realized; therefore
wandered into the western country, working at little gain for one person
and another, until his capital was considerably lessened: when at length
he met with this gentleman, who engaged him to build the house in which
we have been so well entertained;--with him, he has placed the remainder
of his money, to be repaid to him with interest whenever a large bill
due for his exertions shall be settled:--Perhaps his troubles and
disappointments in this life may be over before this happens, for a
rapid decline is carrying him off, and we will hope that then heaven
will send a protector to the widow and the fatherless.


On the third morning we made early preparations for departure; and
accepting gladly the offer of the builder for a guide, we took leave of
_Marvel Hall_ and, not without considerable apprehensions of
difficulties to come in getting away, started for the town of Albion, as
the English settlement is called. According to expectation the way was
not free from wood, bog, gully, and stump; but with the aid of day these
obstacles were overcome without accident; and after having traversed
several miles of woodland and prairie, covered with long grass and
brushwood, and having lost our way once or twice, we at length crossed a
narrow forest track, and rising an eminence entered upon the so-much
talked-of BOULTON HOUSE Prairie; just as the sun in full front of us was
setting majestically, tinging with his golden rays what appeared to be a
widely extended and beautiful park, belted in the distance with woodland
over which the eye ranged afar. The ground was finely _undulated_, and
here and there ornamented with interspersed {110} clumps of the White
Oak and other timber, in such forms that our picturesque planters of
highest repute might fairly own themselves outdone. The effect was
indeed striking, and we halted to enjoy it until the last rays of the
beautiful luminary told the necessity of hurrying on to the settlement,
in search of quarters for the night; indulging by the way sanguine hopes
of an English supper and comfort as a matter of course at an English
settlement. The road was good, yet the length of way made it nearly dark
when we drove up to the log tavern; before the door and dispersed, stood
several groups of people, who seemed so earnest in discourse that they
scarcely heeded us; others, many of whom were noisy from the effects of
a visit to the whiskey store, crowded round to look at us; and amidst
the general confusion as we carried the luggage in (having first
obtained a bed-room,) I was not a little apprehensive of losing some of
it. However, we got all safely stored, and taking the horses off led
them into a straw-yard full of others, for there was no stable room to
be had; and what was worse no _water_, not sufficient even to sprinkle
over some Indian corn which we got for them. The landlord did all that
lay in his power, but our own fare proved little better than that of our
horses, which spoke volumes {111} on the state of the settlement; some
very rancid butter, a little sour bread, and some slices of lean fried
beef, which it was vain to expect the teeth could penetrate, washed down
by bad coffee sweetened with wild honey, formed our repast. We asked for
eggs,--milk,--sugar,--salt; the answer to all was "We have none." The
cows had strayed away for some days in search of water, of which the
people could not obtain sufficient for their own ordinary drink; there
being none for cattle, or to wash themselves, or clothes. After making
such a meal as we could, and having spread our own sheets I laid down
_armed at all points_, that is with gloves and stockings on, and a long
rough flannel dressing gown, and thus defended slept pretty well.

In the morning a request was sent to Mr. Birkbeck for some water,
understanding that he had a plentifully supplied well;--the answer sent
back was, that he made it a general rule to refuse every one: a similar
application to Mr. Flower however met with a different fate, and the
horses were not only well supplied, but a pitcher of good water was sent
for our breakfast. If the first was not punished for his general refusal
the latter was rewarded for his grant by finding on his grounds and not
far from his house, two days after, a plentiful spring of clear {112}
water, which immediately broke out on the first spit of earth's being
removed; this real treasure I saw flowing; the discovery of it appeared
miraculous in the midst of so general a drought.

We now sallied out to take a view of the settlement, which is marked out
not on prairie, but on woodland, only just partially cleared here and
there where a house is built; so that there is yet but little appearance
of a town. A very neat roofed-in building for a market first attracts
the eye; at one end, parted off with boards, and under the same roof is
a very decent place of worship; which is at present of a size sufficient
for the place.

While we were viewing this edifice a young Englishman introduced himself
with a welcome to us, and hopes expressed that I should settle among
them; he was, I found, the medical man of the place, and in himself
certainly formed one inducement to stay, for he seemed to be a very
pleasant communicative man, he possessed a very prettily finished
picturesque cottage and seemed sanguine in his hopes of the success of
the settlement. We visited a wheelwright next; one of the many who had
been induced by Mr. Birkbeck to emigrate soon after he himself left
England:--The man's story is shortly this: he and his brother sailed
{113} for America; and were induced by Mr. B.'s "Notes" to leave the
Eastern parts where good employment was offered to them, and to repair
to the Prairies. On arriving, he found none of the cottages ready for
the reception of emigrants which _his reading_ had led him to expect,
nor any comforts whatever: he was hired however by Mr. B., and got a log
hut erected; but for six months the food left for his subsistence was
only some _reasty_ bacon and Indian corn, with water a considerable part
of the time completely muddy; while Mr. B., himself at Princetown and
elsewhere, did not, as he might have done, send him any relief. On
account of these hardships the man left him, set up for himself, and now
has, he told me, plenty of work, but he seemed doubtful of the pay.
These are the facts as related to me by others, and corroborated by the
man:--If true, without some strong qualifying circumstances, I leave Mr.
B. to settle with his conscience the bringing people out thus far, by
his misrepresentations, to hopeless banishment; for return they cannot,
though they would be glad so to do.

Our tavern-keeper, who was a very respectable farmer, left a good farm
near Baldock in Hertfordshire, guided by Mr. Birkbeck's book, to find
health, wealth, and freedom at Boulton-house {114} Prairie: of the two
first both himself and family were quickly getting rid, while they were
absolutely working each day like horses without one comfort left.--"How
came you," said I, "to leave so good a farm as you had in England?" His
answer was, "Mr. Birkbeck's book."--"You would be glad now to return?"
added I. "Sir," said he, "we must not think that way; we have buried our
property in getting here, and must here remain!" Such facts as these
are worth a thousand flattering theories on the other side; and another
may be here added,--perhaps a salutary caution to Mr. B. if this should
be the first intimation--that the angry feelings of the poor people who
had been entrapped by the deceptious colouring of his writings, flashed
out in true English threats of tossing him in a blanket! I abstain from
comment upon this, my business being to state facts. I forbear too from
respect for a man of good natural abilities; misled himself by a
sanguine temper which has been the cause of his misleading others: I
will be silent too upon the subject of private differences, conceiving
that public acts alone are those in which the public are interested, and
ought to be inquisitive.

Mr. Flower followed up his seasonable supply of water, with a call and
invitation to his house, {115} which was gladly accepted; being much
disgusted at the deplorable state of ill health, anxious looks, despair
and discontent, depicted in so many faces around,--to relieve or even
alleviate which we possessed no means.

The contrast to this at Mr. Flower's was violent and pleasing; there, we
met with every polite and hospitable attention during our stay, and from
thence alone we were grieved to depart. In the midst of these wilds the
elegant repast and social converse were again, as if by magic, enjoyed;
and in such agreeable dissipation of mind the purposes of the journey
were perhaps too much lost sight of, and many inquiries neglected which
are now causes of regret. We did not fail however to explore the retreat
of Mr. Morris Birkbeck,--a pleasant drive across the Prairie brought us
to the Flat, at one extremity of which Mr. B. has established himself.
We found him busy superintending the building of his house; the site of
which is within twenty yards of his erection of logs, a square building
divided into two rooms, as I heard, for we did not see the interior of
this _sanctum sanctorum_ from whence have been issued relations of so
many snug cottages, with adjoining piggeries, cow-steads, gardens, and
orchards; where the limbs of the poor emigrant were to find repose and
his {116} mind solace, not to mention the ranges of log rooms for the
arch priest himself which were building two years ago;[39*] all--all
have vanished "into thin air," except the humble primitive log building
before mentioned. This serves the whole family, according to the
cobbler's song,

  "For parlour, for kitchen and hall;"

and furnishes a proof, though perhaps not sufficient for every one, (the
world is so incredulous,) of Mr. Birkbeck's humility, for he certainly
does not at present enjoy the _otium cum dignitate_ whatever he may have
in prospect.

Up to this log building with some meandering I drove; and seeing a
little man, who by description received, appeared to be Major domo, I
sent to tell him that an English traveller had called and begged to see
his improvements; upon which he approached, and after salutation,
turning towards and pointing to his primitive hut, observed that it was
still his residence, to which so attached had he become that he should
quit it with regret. He then drew my attention to his new house, which
he said, was building according to a promise made to his daughters; and
he invited us to inspect it. Alighting therefore, he led the way {117}
over a sufficiently commodious dwelling, no part of which was yet
finished but the library, placed at the gable end on the first floor and
the approach to it up a high flight of stairs on the outside of the
house: here we found the Misses B.; they were engaged in some
ornamental needlework, and received us like sensible, agreeable girls.
Upon the table lay a flute, an instrument upon which one of them plays;
and every thing was well arrayed to give effect, as well as the
sterling, good, and for a private library large assortment of books. A
fine healthy boy, his son, came up and presented to us some bunches of
wild grapes he had just gathered, the only refreshment I believe
offered; and I took leave, after having in vain endeavoured to gain
information as to his corn-crops, the success of clover, and other

This was strange, but not so particularly unaccountable as at the time I
thought it; for, I afterwards learned he had not sown either one or the
other, although he ventures to put forth this year in one of the
American newspapers, what in charity we will suppose a day-dream--a
pleasing mental deception, in the form of a letter in which he expresses
himself thus; (I quote from memory having mislaid the journal,) "We have
now about as many acres {118} of corn sown as there are settlers, that
is seven hundred."

Now, from the best inquiries I could make, there was not then two
hundred and fifty acres sown in the whole settlement, and on Mr.
Birkbeck's ground not a rood! Therefore, it may be truly said, that the
colony was still for its existence depending for bread upon the
exertions of those who, from a distance of many miles, bought and
brought corn and flour for the market. In corroboration, I will here
insert an extract from a published journal by a Mr. Hulme,[40] formerly
a great bleacher near Manchester, and a friend of Mr. B., who had lately
paid him a visit. Mr. H. writes, "The whole of his operations had been
directed hitherto (and wisely in my opinion,) to building, fencing, and
other important preparations. He had done _nothing in the cultivating
way but make a good garden_, which supplies him with the only things
that he cannot purchase, and purchase too with more economy than he
could grow them."

This Mr. Hulme knew the comforts and cheapness of Philadelphia, and its
market, too well to think of settling at Boulton-house Prairie; besides,
he evidently sneers, as much as a friend can, at the choice of situation
Mr. B. has made, because it appears not to possess any {119} of the
capabilities for mills, &c.: he adds, "I was rather disappointed, or
sorry at any rate, not to find near Mr. Birkbeck's any of the means for
machinery, such as waterfalls, minerals, and mines; some of those
however he may yet find."

Thus has Mr. B. chosen to build a house, plant a garden, and dwell in a
situation where he cannot grow corn so cheap as he can purchase it, and
have it conveyed at a considerable expence from the settlement of
Harmony,[41] distant above twenty miles; in a situation too, which if it
have any recommendation at all, it must be for the purposes of
agriculture, for others it has none that are yet discovered. This may be
to the taste, and it may suit the purse of Mr. B., and no one could
fairly find fault with him for pleasing himself; but, when he steps
beyond this line, and publishes plausible representations to induce
others to seek fortune and independence in such situations, he is then
doing that which he has no right to do, and has much to answer for: he
has led people into this wilderness where, for any thing he has done,
they may in vain look around for the expected shelter; they will see
only Mr. B's house and garden, and perhaps {120} two or three log huts
which at present constitute the whole of the new town of Wansborough; in
short, he seems only to have thought of himself and to have falsified
his public promises. I believe it to be a fact that the colony could not
have outlived the winter of 1818, but that the whole must have been
dispersed or starved, had it not been for the exertions of Mr. Flower;
who perceived in time the coming want, and at considerable trouble and
expence obtained a sufficient and timely supply. Mr. Birkbeck, in his
publication, inveighs strongly against land-jobbing; yet if I am
correctly informed he has obtained and is now gaining great profits by
it,--he has entered as many as thirty thousand acres, which he now
disposes of in lots as high, where he can, as four dollars per acre; it
seems indeed to be his only business, to carry on which with better
success he has given to others, it is said, an interest in the concern
to find out and bring in purchasers of more money than judgment. One of
these jackals, reported to be so employed, I met with on the road.

Having said thus much of an individual who has become noted for
promissory books, and who therefore deserves to be noted for
non-performance, let us turn to the contemplation of that which has been
accomplished by those who did {121} not promise any thing, but who have
done much. Mr. Flower, ably assisted by his father and in conjunction
with a few others, has formed the settlement of New Albion, (an
auspicious name;) and notwithstanding the miserably unprovided state in
which I found it, much had certainly been done, and more was rapidly
doing towards rendering the place habitable. Among other well-judged
resolutions, they had determined, that in future all the houses should
be substantially built of bricks, for the manufacture of which they
have, as I understood, plenty of good clay in the neighbourhood.

A neat covered market, and place of worship, as before observed, had
been finished and opened to the public; to which I have to add that a
roomy boarding house and tavern were half up; a store (shop) pretty well
supplied was opened; a wheelwright has been already mentioned: besides
this trade many other artisans had come in, and the chief want was a
sufficiency of the several materials of their business to work upon; but
fair expectations may be entertained that, ere this account shall be
published, the place will have become well supplied with most of the
common comforts of life, not excepting the essential of water.

It clearly appears, that at present the {122} produce of the earth can
be _bought_ cheaper than it can be _grown_ here; but let us look forward
to the period when this shall not be the case, and the time must surely
soon arrive or the colony cannot long exist:--What then will be the
prospect of a market that the settler will have for the produce, which
shall be more than the consumption of the neighbourhood? It is this,--at
about twelve miles distance is a place called Bon Pas, consisting of a
tavern and two or three houses, situated upon a creek communicating with
the Wabash river; to this creek, (the mud in which not always allowing
boats to come up it,) as the nearest point from the English settlement
to water carriage, all the corn and other exportable produce must be
hauled by land; to be conveyed in boats down to Shawnee town on the
Ohio,[42] (sixty miles,) and thence down that river and the Mississippi
to New Orleans: there to be shipped either for Europe, or for the
eastern ports of America. It must be obvious then, that the price which
can possibly be allowed to the western grower, in order to meet the
eastern farmer on equal terms in his own market, must ever make the
business of the first a comparatively bad one: and as it is thus in the
American markets so will it be in Europe; the freight from the eastern
ports being so much less, as {123} the distance is less, and navigation
safer;--but against this manifest disadvantage may be set the supposed
greater fertility of the western country, and the less price of the land
per acre: but it will never do.--These advantages, if granted, are more
than counterbalanced by the higher price of all the imported articles of
common consumption.

The best hope of the English settlement must be, that in the common
course of events, the time may arrive when the population will be
sufficient to make its own markets; and awaiting that period, they must
be resigned to sink their immediate interests in the prospect of laying
the foundation of future fortune for their posterity. Meanwhile, it may
have attractions for many; whether on account of their principles
religious or political, from general turn of mind, or misfortunes met
with elsewhere; to such it may afford an asylum: but let none forget
that the comforts of life are more than cent per cent dearer (and many
are not to be obtained at all,) than they are in the eastern States; and
that for this cause, more than the climate it is, that health is far
more likely to be preserved in the old settled country, than here.

The strange heterogeneous mixture of characters which are collected
hither by the magic {124} pen of Morris Birkbeck, is truly ludicrous.
Among many others, a couple now attend to the store at Albion who
lately lived in a dashing style in London not far from Bond-street; the
lady brought over her white satin shoes and gay dresses, rich carpets,
and every thing but what in such a place she would require; yet I
understand that they have accommodated themselves to their new
situations, hand out the plums, sugar, whiskey, &c., with tolerable
grace, and at least "do not seem to mind it." At Bon Pas we sat down to
a wild turkey with a party among whom was an _exquisite_, so complete,
that had it been the age of genies, I should have thought _it_ had been
pounced upon while lounging along Rotten-row, whirled through the air,
and for sport set down in this wilderness to astonish the natives: the
whole has truly a most pantomimic effect, and Momus might keep his court
at this anomalous scene, and laugh to his full content.

Let us now bid adieu to the English settlement, my sentiments respecting
which are, from what has been said, so obvious as to render any thing
more unnecessary. We are taking the road to the German settlement called
Harmony, and will only stop the wheels to make mention of the very
complete farm yards and surrounding {125} buildings, which Mr. Flower
has erected; also of his flock, consisting of upwards of four hundred
sheep, which has been collected in a very short space of time and part
of which he brought from England; these feed during the day upon the
prairies, and are brought into the yards at night _for safety from the
wolves and bears_.[43] A yoke of fine oxen too were daily plowing for
him the prairie land, and preparing a considerable breadth of it for
cultivation:--But though men of capital may thus in great measure bring
many of their comforts with them, and attract others, yet after all
that can be said of this place it is at present a bad concern; from
which it was with no small pleasure that I knew myself in a situation to
get away; and many,--many expressed themselves to be of the same
opinion, though with rueful faces, for they were obliged to stay, having
spent their all to get there.


From Bon Pas (the future Emporium of the commerce of New Albion!) we
soon crossed the Wabash at a ferry of difficult approach; for the {126}
river banks are steep and high, and the descent is therefore rather
dangerous for a carriage; we got over safe however, and then keeping the
river close on the right, arrived in the evening at the German
settlement, and put up at the excellent good tavern, neatness itself,
but furnished in the very plainest manner, and beyond a three cornered
arm chair, there was not a piece of furniture which could excite the
repose of indolence or the indulgence of luxury. After a plain repast,
accompanied however with some good beer and a bottle of white wine, both
the produce of the colony, (for the last we paid one dollar,) we sallied
out to take a view of a place which could afford such good cheer. Before
we proceed to examine it, however, I am disposed to talk a little of the
great cementing principle of the society--_a communion of goods_.--While
the rest of mankind are given up to a selfish principle; while each one
is amassing the possessions of this transitory scene, grasping them
truly as if he were never to part with them, these people, under the
guidance of their spiritual pastor M. Rapp, are shewing to the world the
practicability of what they esteem the real christian principle; they
are living in the utmost harmony with a strict communion of property.
All the products of the earth, which all contribute their share of
labour {127} to produce, are deposited in the common stock, whence each
one receives whatever may be required for his comforts. Indeed, what my
host at the tavern told me seems perfectly true; "We have every thing we
can want" says he, "for our comfort and _something more_."

Nothing short of a pure religious principle (certainly not worldly
interest,) could keep such a community in harmony; that here is an
example of its doing so is at first view highly gratifying; it gives
promise that the time may arrive when mankind may generally adopt it.
Should it stand the test, it must bring conviction to all, what some
think _now_ must be the universal belief; at least _christians_ must be
convinced that the institution of property, with all its attendant "hard
words, jealousies and fears" is incompatible with a religion which
proclaims "peace on earth, good-will towards men," and prescribes mutual
love and benevolence as essential to happiness here and hereafter.

This colony, (though they admit into their communion any one, who
professing their principles and submitting to their rules wishes to be
admitted among them,) is composed chiefly of poor Germans; who have fled
from a despotic government, to enjoy quietly in this remote scene their
religion, and the fruits of their industry:--{128} In their leader they
place implicit confidence, and obey him with promptitude; he directs the
labours of the day as well as their religious duties; and in neither is
there any perceptible distinction made between the members of his own
family and his flock. The same plain dress is worn by all, and all
equally go to the labours of the field. To shew the extent of their
reliance on, and obedience to him, the following fact is sufficient:
soon after the commencement of their settlement M. Rapp, foreseeing the
serious difficulties which would arise from too quick an increase of
their numbers, told them it was necessary that for the present they
should not have any more children. He was obeyed for the necessary
period; but the interdiction has been since removed and plenty of
children were to be seen in proof of it. Mr. Birkbeck has misrepresented
this temporary order as a fundamental law of the society, and takes
occasion to condemn them for it; when in fact it was a very wise
forecast, preventing the distress which would have certainly ensued from
the want of sufficient provisions.

Let us now take a view of this interesting colony. The site is obviously
well chosen on a good soil, rather elevated, and at a sufficient
distance from the low grounds near the river for {129} the advantage of
a healthy air: the streets are of spacious width crossing each other at
right angles, and lined with Lombardy poplars: the houses, which at
leisure are to be replaced by others of more durable materials, are at
present log cottages of a pleasing picturesque plan, and very neatly
thatched; to each is attached a garden, a yard, a shed, and out-house
for the cow and other purposes, the whole having an air of great
comfort. Near the inn in a square open space stands the church, which,
though formed of wood and boarded, is a handsome large building. On one
side this square is the house of the pastor, the materials of good
brick. It is large, and finished in the best style of workmanship. Of
the same material they have also built a spacious store which contains
articles of grocery, hardware, and indeed every thing that the
inhabitants of the surrounding country  require, and with these it
seemed to carry on great business: this store is guarded with close
iron-barred windows, and its general appearance corresponding, I
inquired what occasion _they_ had for a prison? This caution is no
compliment to the honesty of the settlers around. A large steam mill is
at work constantly, where they grind corn, card wool, saw boards, &c.:
they have also thrashing machines of great power and indeed {130} a vast
variety of other machinery; they dye cloth pretty well: there are
buildings ample for school instruction, and in short, (for, to enumerate
every thing would require a long residence among them,) they seem to
possess every comfort. The vines were loaded with beautiful ripe grapes
both black and white; and they were fast covering the hills of sandy
soil in the neighbourhood with new vineyards. It was the Indian-corn
harvest, and the young women and children, standing in a large circle,
were employed in stripping off the leaves and throwing the cobs into
baskets, which the men carried into the barns on willing shoulders. We
contemplated this scene with much pleasure and then proceeded to take a
view of the country around the settlement; which we found cleared to
great extent, and sown with wheat looking luxuriantly and promising

[Illustration: The Church at Harmonie]

The whole here described, and probably much more might escape
observation, has been effected in the short period of five years and a
half!--They may fairly take for their motto _vis unita fortior_, for
they have accomplished wonders by it; far more than money could have
effected with mercenary workmen, and far better too, for here is no
interest to deceive the employer; they work for themselves. But, though
inclined, {131} I must not dilate upon this fascinating principle which
seems to strike at the root of most if not all of the moral evils of
society; heartily hoping that its practicability may stand the test, and
prove its sterling character, I shall therefore take leave of the
subject with a few more observations, which will end what I have to say
respecting this quiet industrious people. They keep no accompts of the
several branches of their industry;--an annual taking of stock is all
they think necessary; which is done in order to know the extent of their
resources, and that they may be able to calculate their sufficiency to
the wants for the year.

There was, I must confess after all, a dull sameness pervading the
place, which I am willing to attribute rather to the phlegmatic German
character than to their institutions. There is too, a depression of
spirit which hangs about every man, far removed from the country which
gave him birth, from those early scenes of childhood upon which his eye
first rested with delight, and from those friends "he ne'er shall see
again." Expatriated communities, like plants removed from the seed bed,
for awhile sicken; but if planted in a genial soil they in time take
firm root, again spread abroad their leaves, and flourish.

{132} Music they have, for we heard a grand pianoforte well played; they
may have other instruments and also other amusements though I saw none;
and their language, which I did not understand, precluded conversation,
for no one, except my host of the tavern, not even M. Rapp, spoke
English or French. The women, to use the phrase of a polite man, are the
_least handsome_ I ever beheld: the Colony therefore may possibly not be
much disturbed by female intrigues, and thus be free from one other
great cause of embroilment among mankind. To conclude my observations,
they seem according to their own ideas a happy people; and did they
possess a little more liveliness, more polish, and talk English one
might have lived among them, which is more than I felt inclined to do in
any other society we met with.

_October_ 3d. We were now considerably above four thousand miles from
home. It was the original intention that we should winter at Vincennes,
on which account various necessaries had been sent from Philadelphia as
well as brought with us; but I had already nearly _seen enough_, and
having been informed, also judging from what I had seen,

  (Of hair-breadth 'scapes i' the imminent _river banks_
  --------_Morasses_ vast and desarts idle,
  Rough quarries, rocks, and hills whose heads touch heaven;)

{133} that the roads of Indiana were seldom passable for wheels in the
spring of the year, and not until the beginning of summer, I began to
think that a winter and following spring passed in the western country,
might leave the choice of a winter passage home or the further delay of
another year; which would be too long a detainer from old England: and
we therefore entertained thoughts of getting back before winter to one
of the eastern ports, whence, if necessary, we might embark at any time
during the winter, or otherwise to stay till spring. Not to lose time
and fair weather therefore, in getting back to Vincennes to make
arrangements for the return, we quitted the interesting Colony of
Harmony early in the morning; having to drive thirty miles to
Princetown[44] the nearest station. Throughout the whole of my journey,
though sometimes at a loss, I was fortunate enough not once to lose the
way; a circumstance partly owing to being very particular in noting
directions whenever they could be obtained--a plan that cannot be too
strongly recommended to travellers through difficult countries. Let them
not be content with directions from one individual, but ask every one
they may meet; I have often had cause to repent confidently passing a
person, and within half a mile after have found myself in uncertainty:
this {134} was the case on leaving Harmony after obtaining what we
thought full directions; but people who know a country are hardly ever
sufficiently circumstantial to a stranger.

In a few miles we passed in the midst of the forest a solitary
meeting-house, and soon after met several respectable looking people on
horseback in their Sunday clothes coming to it. We were this day
probably beholden to our fire-arms for safety; and though many
travellers do not carry them, I strongly recommend all those who have
any property not to omit it. A ruffian-looking fellow had introduced
himself to me at Harmony, under pretence of shewing a note which he had
received, he said, above thirty miles westward, and which proving to be
a forgery he must go back to exchange. He wanted much to be informed of
my route, but this of course I avoided telling, and thought no more of
him; but to-day, instead of going back as he had said, we suddenly saw
him riding after us upon a wretched horse, and he soon passed with such
a dogged look that I had no doubt on my mind of his intentions, which
were the more confirmed by his stopping afterwards frequently and
looking about and at us. So we got under arms; I placing the rifle
between my legs as I drove, and the pistols at my side: he evidently
wavered {135} in his resolution, apprehensive that more people might be
near on their way to the meeting, and perhaps not liking our number. We
soon came up with him, however, at a log-hut, where he was fortifying
with whiskey; and as we marched past we took care he should see we were
prepared: he looked hard, but before we were out of sight struck off in
another direction and we saw him no more.

Slept at Princetown; where there was found nothing more important to
note than a tolerable good inn, and some blackberry wine of my host's
own manufacture, for a bottle of which he had the conscience to charge a
dollar, and "by the light of the moon" next evening we got safe back to
Vincennes, and found those of our party left there during this
expedition all well. From this pleasant town we made short excursions in
the neighbourhood, and a week passed in irresolution whether to winter
or to attempt the return at this season; for various were the
representations and advice upon the subject: among the inducements to
stay there is plenty of shooting of all kinds, the place is healthy, and
we had the offer of a furnished house.--If the reader has been called
upon to act under circumstances where the _pros_ and _cons_ have been so
equally balanced, that it seemed not possible to refer the affair to the
{136} decision of the judgment,--perhaps _he_ has tossed up. _I_ did
not, but I resolved to go: and having once determined, the necessary
arrangements were soon made; the baggage waggon and its contents to a
considerable value were intrusted to the _honour_ and _honesty_ of a
Vincennes merchant,[45] and with my dearborn, and luckily all the four
horses, on the 11th October, I commenced my retreat. I intended to take
the same route homeward as far as Zanesville, (Ohio,) and from thence by
a northerly course to Lake Erie, proceed to the Falls of Niagara, then
to Albany and down the north river to New York; but the lateness of the
season afterwards induced me reluctantly to alter the plan, and to
return through Maryland.

In retracing our steps we shall not have occasion for much observation,
until we take new ground on entering the State of Maryland.

From Vincennes the first week brought us to Louisville; a distance of
near one hundred and {137} fifty miles. I had been instructed, by the
persons who cashed my bill at Vincennes, to consult with a broker of
this town who was requested to exchange those notes which were not at
par for others that were so, taking a per centage for the
transaction--he did so; and the reader is informed, in order that he may
have some idea of the state of the banks and of public credit, that
twenty-five per cent or one quarter was the difference of value of notes
between Louisville and Vincennes.[46]

The end of the second week brought us again to Maysville, or Limestone
on the Ohio, which divides Kentucky from Ohio State. The country does
not lose on the review; even in Indiana it seems to be cultivated to
greater extent than at first sight it appeared to be; the weather is
delightful, and the various tints with which the foliage glows is far
beyond the reach of pen or pencil. This season is called here the
_Indian_ {138} _summer_, and indeed the agreeable temperature of the
air, the beauty of the day, and the variety of forest scenery I could
much wish to describe though vain would be the attempt. Let the reader
imagine the finest autumnal day in England, and suppose an unvaried
succession of such days, as far from oppressive heat as from cold; let
him then cull from our woods every tint of autumn's foliage, heighten
every colour in imagination, and add more; then perhaps he may have a
faint idea of the Indian summer season.

At Lewis's tavern in Indiana we witnessed a fine appearance of the
aurora borealis; beautiful columns of light in constant motion and of
great breadth continually darted upward, extending and shortening by
turns while others crossed these; the whole moved gradually towards the
west. At this place we were overtaken by a lady and gentleman, their
child and nurse, returning from Lexington from an excursion to the new
settlement of Indostan on the White river;--they travelled in their own
carriage, (a chariot) it may therefore be well supposed that the roads
were tolerably good. Their arrival caused a good deal of consultation
and contrivance for the night's accommodations; there was but one room
for both {139} parties, which, by hanging up sheets and other
substitutes for curtains, was at length divided into four;--beds were
then spread, and all slept quietly without furnishing any scene in which
either Scarron or Fielding would have delighted: 'tis true we set fire
to the log chimney, for the night was cold, and we had piled the faggots
a little too high, but this was luckily seen before retiring to rest, or
it might have been attended with serious consequences to us. My host, a
shrewd spirited little fellow, strutting about in the short cloak a
l'Espagnol worn here, and with his black worsted remains of stockings
full of holes, which did not in the least damp his self-conceit, told me
next morning, on my remarking the scarcity of houses of entertainment
for travellers, that indeed another _good_ house besides his own was
much wanted on the road.

Great is the facility of acquiring money here if a man has judgment; he
first looks out for some spot where a tavern is wanted, he immediately
cuts down the trees around and puts together a rude log hut, which he
covers with shingles (wood tiles;) a board is then inscribed "tavern,"
or "house of entertainment." Inside you find it very sparingly
furnished, but he has got some fowls and spirits, and if he minds, his
fortune is made. Travellers are plentiful, and his charges {140} as high
as if he could treat them with every comfort, instead of putting two
people _commonly_, and sometimes three, into a bed; in a room, too,
containing four, five and six beds! The horses are put into another
inclosure of logs, the interstices of which near a foot wide, (in summer
an advantage,) are not at all closed even during the severity of winter.

At Paoli town, Indiana, we arrived on the day of militia muster, and
found there a considerable concourse of people, for it appeared to be a
holiday. It would have been idle to look for the regular uniform,
correctness of evolutions and discipline, where probably neither the
power nor the wish to attain these existed; a few only wore a uniform of
neat grey colour with sash and long feather; the rest in the usual
dress, and each man armed with his rifle. The amusement or chief
exercise of the day, beyond the roll call, seemed to be firing at marks,
at which they have justly established a character for great dexterity.
Yet the American has but little skill with his arms in hitting a moving
object, whether running or flying; indeed he scarcely ever attempts it,
and he must too have his accustomed weapon or it is a chance if he
succeeds;--a man dexterous with his rifle was admiring the pistols I
carried, and wished to {141} try them; he shot twice at fifteen paces
without even hitting the tree on which the mark was placed: that the
pistols may not be supposed faulty, I mention, though _no practiser_
with the weapon, that I hit close to the mark each shot, and with both,
for he would change thinking mine might be the best. The same person
with his own rifle without a rest, (which aid by the way is frequently
taken advantage of,) at sixty yards shot from a tree a piece of paper no
larger than we could see. Towards evening the multitude dispersed, and
again the silence of the desert prevailed.

At Louisville we first saw the effects of a violent epidemic disease
which had attacked the horses, and many were dying of it. The disorder
appeared first upon the tongue, without any previous symptoms of fever
that I perceived; blebs or blisters rose, broke, and increasing in
number the whole tongue shortly became completely skinned and much
swelled; the malady extended itself gradually down the throat, and the
animal died, more it would appear from inability to take in food than
immediately owing to the disorder.--Almost every horse we met on the
road had caught the infection; at Louisville and Frankfort, at the last
in particular, I saw near forty altogether in one yard: various were the
{142} modes of treatment; some bled them and gave physic upon the first
appearance; diet, soft mashes with nitre honey and the insides of
gourds: the animals seemed to suffer greatly from hunger. The local
applications were a mixture of copperas, alum, and blue vitriol
pulverized and rubbed upon the tongue twice or more each day, in order
to destroy the activity of the disease, and a frequent washing between
these applications, with honey and alum water. This was the mode of
treatment I adopted,[47] for three of my horses caught it, and they all
recovered, though one was reduced so low that I was obliged to exchange
him at Maysville. With the others we continued the journey without the
delay of one day, and they were in better condition on re-entering
Philadelphia than when they left it.

At Lexington (Kentucky) we stopped at the Indian Queen which is a good
house. Another change of notes became here necessary; those of the Bank
of the United States were not to be procured, and no others being
received with any certainty on the road, I sold the notes changed at
Louisville for dollars at a further discount of two and a half per cent,
and even {143} for this bargain I was again beholden to the good offices
of the same gentleman who had kindly cashed my draft when going
westward. My dollars were put into a bag, and as I returned swinging
them along to the tavern, the weight caused some reflections on the
different effects on mankind of specie and paper as circulating
mediums;--the first, by its weight obviously tends to make one think
more of expenditure even in small sums; the latter, by the facility it
affords of carrying in the pocket-book sums of any magnitude must have a
directly reverse effect;--perhaps one of the greatest evils attendant
upon the paper money system may be attributed to this cause, and the
very inconvenience which I now experience of carrying an inconsiderable
sum in specie might therefore, if general, be an important means of
raising the value of money, and of establishing economy in public and
private affairs.

25th. Quitted Mr. Chamber's hospitable house at Maysville; and crossing
the river ascended the steep hill which immediately presents itself in
the State of Ohio.--On reaching the top we received the first intimation
of a change of weather--snow had fallen and did not disappear the whole
day from the shade; gales of wind now blew, and rain had lately fallen
in different {144} parts in sufficient quantity to render the roads
wretchedly bad: our progress was now slow and frequently difficult;--we
passed several laden waggons of emigrating parties either set fast in
the clay and digging out, or broken down and waiting for the aid of some
distant blacksmith. This was a sad change of scene, however we kept up a
good spirit, and having a light though strong carriage, good cattle, and
helping these with our own exertions up some of the steepest hills, we
surmounted all difficulties, and arrived without accident the end of the
fourth week at Washington, Pensilvania, distant from Vincennes about
five hundred miles.

Travellers, whether through unformed tracks of distant countries or over
the mighty mass of waters, must possess minds little susceptible of
impression, if they do not, in such situations, feel themselves more
peculiarly under the protecting hand of providence. To pass safely a
length of way, where a false step might frequently bring destruction, is
alone a subject of thankfulness; but to have seen themselves within a
moment, a hair's breadth of destruction, and to be preserved, must bring
the sentiment to their minds with tenfold force: one day while
traversing Ohio State, a gust of wind blew off the top of a large dead
tree, which fell with a {145} tremendous crash on the spot over which
in another moment of time we should have been passing!

At West Union, a small town with a good court-house, we had intended to
sleep; but on arriving found the whole place full of people and to
obtain beds impossible; at which the owners of the tavern very civilly
expressed their regret, and though in the midst of hurry and bustle
thought to speak for beds to the owner of a good private house, three or
four miles further who happened to be in the inn. While the horses were
feeding however, we went into a room, the table of which was covered
with a profusion of fowls, ham, veal, beef, and many other symptoms of
plenty; to partake of which the hostess very hospitably pressed us, and,
that we might not be backward in accepting her proffered good cheer,
assured us that it would be no loss to them, as every thing on the table
would be swept away not to appear again; for especially upon these
occasions nothing was ever brought on a second time.--"Have you no poor
people to accept of the remains?" said I. She knew but of one family,
she replied, to whom it could possibly be acceptable, and she did not
think even these would receive it. An additional instance this, proving
that food is abundant in {146} this country. Paid here for a new
horse-shoe about eighteenpence sterling.

In passing through Ohio, the Derbyshire of the United States, we found
in the sitting-rooms coal fires used almost generally in preference to
wood; but from an extraordinary prejudice, which even exists at
Philadelphia and other places, wood is still used for the purpose of
cookery, and they will not believe that a dinner can be dressed properly
at a coal fire.

[Illustration: Bridge at Zanesville, Ohio]

We again slept at Wheeling, and again were much pleased with the
situation. Old Major Sprigs[48] did us the honour to entertain us at his
very good house, though it was very perceptible that he, in common with
so many more, is not in charity with English blood: as a proof of the
feeling, he was complaining of the rats about his premises, none of
which vermin, he said, "were to be found in the country before the
English brought them!"

This is the beginning of the season for Venison. A man came to the door
with a horse-load which the Major bought for threepence sterling per
lb., the price asked. Let not the reader long for American venison and
fancy it to resemble a fine haunch fed in an English park; it is lean
and more like horse-flesh, with very few exceptions.

Many families and other parties were still waiting {147} here, and at
other places where we had crossed the Ohio, until the rising of its
waters should enable them to pass down to the west: this did not happen,
I was told, in the past year until the month of December; and to all
appearance it may be as late this season; during the interval these poor
people are exhausting their resources, losing their time, and at last
will pass down the river at a most unpleasant and dangerous season of
the year, if the ice should permit, a circumstance not probable: those
travellers therefore, who intend such mode of conveyance, (a very
pleasant one in summer,) should not start later than May; as the waters
rapidly subside after June, when it frequently happens that none but
light and nearly flat-bottomed boats can get down.[49]--{148} The rivers
of North America it must be acknowledged are grand, but this annual
loss of water will perhaps ever be a drawback to their utility which no
art can remedy. I am more than half inclined, however, to withdraw this
opinion, for American enterprise is alive to the object; and two works
which I saw in progress, and which by this time may be finished, give
promise that much may be accomplished;--one of these is at Louisville,
where a canal cut at great expense will enable vessels to avoid
the Falls of the Ohio, dangerous at all times, and often
impassable;[50]--another on the Schuylkil, where the aim is to deepen
the water sufficiently to render it at all times navigable.[51] Weirs
are carried at certain distances nearly across the river, leaving a
space for a short canal with two locks to pass vessels.

[Illustration: View at Fort Cumberland, Maryland]

Should this plan become generally adopted on those rivers where the
navigation fails annually from the loss of water, it will, among other
good results, conduce essentially to the health of the climate; by
preventing the stagnant pools left in hollows, and the exposure of slime
and mud to the sun, now the pregnant source of disorders.

Where, or when an American uses water for the purpose of washing more
than his face and fingers, {149} does not appear, for no water ever goes
up stairs at a tavern unless your own servants take it. Under the shed
of the house, water and tin basons are placed in the morning, and each
one on coming down rubs his face and hands over;--they may bathe perhaps
in the rivers occasionally; if not, they are decidedly dirty people.--An
English youth at our inn at Wheeling in order to wash himself a little
more effectually, let his shirt down to his waistband; an attempt at
cleanliness so unusual, caused a general surprise and laugh among the

At a small place called Claysville, a stage from Washington
(Pensilvania), a man came to offer to the tavern-keeper for sale a fat
pig; the price he demanded was about two shillings and sixpence sterling
per stone of fourteen pounds, and I was told that he would have taken a
quarter less.--Another proof this, if one were wanting, of the cheapness
and plenty of food.[52]

We stayed a day at Washington, Pensilvania, comfortably received at Mr.
Morris's good tavern, and then took a new route by the south-west corner
of this State: crossing the Monongahela river we baited at
Brownsville,[53] at an excellent house kept by Mr. Evans, an emigrant;
from {150} thence, by a fine new road through Union Town,[54] we soon
entered the picturesque State of Maryland, and arrived at a small town
called Fort Cumberland. The traveller by this route will pass the
mountains scarcely knowing it, except from the fine views of the
subjacent country which are frequently presented to view; that from the
top of the hill about eleven or twelve miles west of Cumberland is truly
magnificent. Along this well-formed road we pass without once being
stopped to pay toll, and I understood it to be the intention of the
United States government to finish and support this western road, from
Washington the seat of the government down to New Orleans, by a fund to
be raised solely for that purpose; a liberal plan and worthy of
imitation. Of the few picturesque stations it has been our lot to see,
Fort Cumberland stands first; it is not in itself a town of any
importance or containing many good buildings, but surrounded as it is by
mountains covered with beautiful foliage, and its stream winding through
the vale, it forms a whole worthy the pencil of a master: at the
distance of about six miles are some natural curiosities of rock, cave,
and waterfall, which, owing to the lateness of the season, I did not
chuse to lose a day in viewing though invited to it by the respectable
old Patriarch of {151} the settlement, who in his ninetieth year yet
offered to walk and accompany us to the scene.

[Illustration: View at Fort Cumberland, Maryland]

The reader will be mistaken if, from what has been said of good roads
and fine weather, he supposes we meet with nothing else; from a few
miles off Wheeling until this day or two, the air has been filled with
what in England would be thought a thick fog,--here they say it is
smoke arising from burning barrens and prairies which are yearly at
this time set on fire; indeed we have lately passed near enough to
woodland on fire to see the flames and to hear the crackling of the
timber; to our eyes a melancholy sight, accustomed as they have been to
value and admire the forest growth. This brings to remembrance what has
been told me of the great danger, and of lives lost in the Prairie
country, from the custom of setting fire to the long grass in order to
obtain a fine beautiful herbage, which, in a few weeks after succeeds
it: the devouring element assisted by the wind advances so quickly that
the speed of a horse has sometimes proved unavailing. The effect upon
the long rushy grass as the fire reaches it, is frightfully grand; the
heat first elevates and then throws it forward like waves, thus crossing
the country at a rate inconceivably rapid;--instances have occurred of
houses, cattle, and people suddenly falling a sacrifice to this rash
{152} method of clearing the ground: the way to avoid such a
catastrophe, the neglect of which occasioned to Mr. Flower the loss of
some stacks, is to mow the herbage to a sufficient distance round the

Nor is this danger to be apprehended only in the Prairie country. An
emigrant, crossing the mountains some few years ago, wrote thus back to
his alarmed friends, "the fire is before and behind me, I dare neither
go forward nor return, and what will become of me I know not:" as his
letter came safe we will hope he escaped.

Within this week a considerable number of waggons laden with goods and
people have passed on their way to the Western country: as this Indian
summer cannot last much longer, these parties would seem to be some of
the improvident of the earth not to have moved earlier to their

_November 13th._ The journey to-day, though over high hills and
tremendous rocky ways, has been one of the pleasantest drives we have
experienced: the clouds were just sufficiently broken to throw as they
flew, endless and varied light and shade over the most beautiful and
extensive views; rocks of various forms presented their rugged surfaces
amongst the thick growing Pines and Oaks which, though small and stunted
compared {153} to those in the Western country, are not on that account
the less picturesque; and though the land is also equally inferior, yet
such scenery, healthy air, and good water, must I conceive render
Maryland a desirable residence to the man of refinement and property, in
preference to any part that I have seen.

_14th._ A day more beautiful never opened or continued throughout. The
national road not being finished we had twelve miles of the old track
yet to pass, over rocks and gullies.

Maryland is a country of high narrow ridges, much rock, and but little
land of prime quality; the timber, chiefly pine and oak, is small,--the
rock which on this route everywhere abounds, is much of it strongly
impregnated with iron; there is also much of it limestone and granite.
Ridge after ridge we passed, rewarded by many an extensive and beautiful
view, until at length after an hour's toil up Sidling Hill we entered
upon the new road and bowled along down to the small town of Hancock
near the Potomac, skirting that beautiful river to Fredericktown.

_18th._ Fredericktown[55] stands in a good situation, having a fine view
of the ridges of hills immediately west of it. The place is about half
the size of Lexington (Kentucky): the inhabitants seem to be rich,
having erected many good {154} buildings both public and private, the
latter very tastefully and expensively furnished. The Court-house, a
handsome building, stands in a square which is _yet to be_ gravelled; on
one side we remarked a lofty shed under which were hung an enormous pair
of scales, seemingly typical of the purposes to which the central
building is devoted. Churches are plentiful, nine in number and some of
them well built. Talbot's tavern excellent and good attendance, but
charges, as they are every where on this road, very high.

This is a Slave State; an institution hateful to English ears; yet I
will observe again that after travelling through three slave States, I
am obliged to go back to theory to raise any abhorence of it: not once
during the journey did I witness an instance of cruel treatment, nor
could I discover anything to excite commiseration in the faces or gait
of the people of colour--they walk, talk, and appear at least as
independent as their masters; in animal spirits they have greatly the
advantage: doubtless there may be instances of cruelty, but I am
inclined to think that such are of rare occurrence, and this for other
reasons, as before remarked, besides those of humanity. Upon the
question "What is the proper place of the Black in the order of
creation?" (a subject which, after so much has been said on both sides,
yet remains {155} in dispute,) the tendency of the above observations
may seem to place him subordinate to the white--the next link in that
chain of gradation, almost imperceptible to us, which nature exhibits
throughout all her works: yet is the man of colour in general orderly in
his conduct under the every-day duties of life, and also instances are
not wanting of superior abilities among them, though they have not had
perhaps fair-play shewn them in this respect. I may have occasion to
observe more hereafter on this subject, meanwhile let it console the
philanthropist, that if the black is not in his proper place, yet he
possesses comforts, and appears very contented.

_19th._ At Baltimore. The view is fine from an eminence about half a
mile from the town, nor are you disappointed on entering the city;
though not so large, it is yet the most pleasing by far of the three
eastern ports we have visited: whether the beauty and taste, the variety
and neatness of the buildings, both public and private be considered, or
the plan and situation--the whole is indeed strikingly interesting. A
beautiful marble column is in part finished, a national monument to the
memory of those who fell in the battle at North Point;[56] not far from
this is in progress a superb Catholic cathedral, and close to it stands
a Unitarian church, an edifice not surpassed {156} in beauty by any in
the city. Besides these there are a variety of churches and other public
buildings: one of the most prominent the College of Physicians, a very
heavy combination, and not rendered the more pleasant by, we will hope,
the inappropriate neighbourhood of a burial ground. On the whole the
traveller cannot but be pleased with a view of Baltimore and the State
of which it is the chief town.

On leaving Baltimore about half a mile, a large burial ground presents
itself on the road side: the Americans inclose these places with little
or no fence, and very frequently bury their dead with little or no
ceremony;--as we passed this ground a man within it was carrying a
child's coffin under his arm, which he was going to inter apparently by
himself.--Mr. Birkbeck mentions the summary method in the western
country of felling a tree across the spot where they inhume a body: but
the tree had sometimes been removed, and we frequently drove over
hillocks in the wilderness under which lay the bones of the departed.

The road now led along the western edge of the grand bay of Chesapeak,
of which we caught frequent and delightful views--here indeed may
America justly pride herself; her bays and rivers stretching to a great
distance from the coast--{157} surely nothing in nature can exceed for
grandeur or utility. Havre de Grace at the mouth of the Susquehannah is
a small place, but beautifully and healthfully situated: it was burned
by us during the last war, they say upon very small provocation, which
has given a blow to the little prosperity it enjoyed; and a bridge now
building at a short distance up the river, by rendering the ferry
useless and turning the present road, will further hurt it. One of the
greatest dainties, the canvas-back duck, is here obtained in great
numbers and sent to Philadelphia and Baltimore markets; though this was
the season for them, we were not so fortunate as to feast upon the
delicacy. The Susquehannah is navigable for large vessels to the bridge,
and for small craft, I was informed, for near five hundred miles up the

The tavern at Havre de Grace is far better than that on the opposite
shore; we had good beds and attendance. The ferry, about a mile wide,
is well managed; on landing, we drove on through Elkton, Christiana, and
Newport to Wilmington, a large town near the Delaware, and a place of
some trade: the State Bank is a good building. At night reached Chester;
the first inn was quite full and the next nearly so, which appeared very
unaccountable; but on enquiry learned that it is {158} the chief
_retiring place_ for Debtors, where in about five weeks residence they
get cleared of the _Dun disease_ and come out themselves again.

_23d._ A beautiful day: breakfasted near the small town of Darby, and
shortly after once again entered Philadelphia, after an absence of four
months, and a journey of above two thousand five hundred miles performed
in good health and with much interest throughout.

       *       *       *       *       *

I now take leave of the Western country of the United States; and
although the reader may perhaps be enabled to gather from the foregoing
observations sufficient whereon to judge for himself, yet it may be
proper to sum up that which I have to say upon it; and it may be done in
a few words:--First addressing all those who are possessed of capital, I
will state, that if they are content to undergo for their own lives many
difficulties, and to make a certain sacrifice of many of the little
comforts they can possess and have been used to enjoy at a moderate cost
in England, they may then for a trifling sum establish their posterity
upon a good estate in America, which hereafter may place _them_ in
affluence; and this may be accomplished at a distance far short of the
Prairies of Illinois;--but let them be again reminded {159} that it must
be done at some risk, much trouble, and a certain sacrifice of many of
their own comforts: so much for those who look forward. As to immediate
prospects, taking the different ranks, professions, and businesses in
turn, I must first assure the gentleman and the idle man that they have
_no business_ in any part of the territory. The farmer who has been
accustomed to the regular markets, the constant labourers, and the
comforts of an English hearth, will here find the reverse of all these
and more; not so bad perhaps in the country nearest to the eastern
cities as in the west, where labour to manage more than a small portion
of his land is not to be had; and if it could, there is either no
market, or it is so distant that the small price he can obtain for his
grain renders it little worth growing; whilst this very distance from
market which thus acts against him, also renders the price of all
groceries at least double that which it is in the Eastern States.[57]
For professional men I saw no opening, unless it may be for dissenting
teachers in religion.--There are many young physicians spread about the
country who keep taverns for their support; as to lawyers, there are
enough for the population. {160} For manufacturers there may perhaps be
found some employ: but it is principally the young poor man who can turn
his hand to anything--the stout agricultural labourer, for whom this
country is at present calculated; here such men may, with reasonable
labour and activity, in a short time realise a little property, and
after living in comparative plenty and comfort, leave their families to
enjoy the same with independence. It is emphatically the country for the
poor man; but he must not go thither, as many have done, expecting no
difficulties to be encountered, no privations to be endured; nor must he
be disheartened at finding a cool reception, and work not immediately
offered on his arrival at the Eastern ports;--he must push forward
westward without idly stopping to spend his money and waste his time;
work his way if money runs short (he may at all places get food at least
for his services,) until he arrives at a place where hands are wanted
and good wages are offered for them; he has then a fair and near
prospect of comfort, taking care only to be industrious, frugal, and
especially to avoid habits of drinking, a vice the most difficult to
withstand where the spirits of the country are to be obtained for half a
crown the gallon.

There are people with us in England who object {161} to giving the poor
man any facility of emigration, and who are disposed to condemn
prospects held out to him of improving his present condition by a change
of country; I shall not stop to argue with such narrow policy and truly
anti-christian reasoners more than to say, that I will leave them to
point out, for I cannot, even in a political point of view, any loss to
a country arising from the emigration of a _redundant_ population.


Though a winter passage across the Atlantic may be quick it is almost
always unpleasant; this thought, aided by a wish to see a little more of
the climate and people ere I should bid to both farewell, determined me
to stay till spring. The following notes and reflections are the fruit
of the protracted residence, and they are presented to the reader nearly
as they stand in my journal: in their nature they must be desultory, and
by essaying to render them more connected, the little interest they may
possess might be made yet less.

_December_ 6th. A beautiful day, even warm, as indeed the mid-day has
hitherto been, yet the {162} thermometer in an east room window opened
at early morning stood at 33°.

Rode with D***** to the view on the Schuylkil called the "Flat Rock." On
the way called at Mr. Fletcher's screw factory,--Mr. F. took pains to
explain to us the machinery, though after all we best understood the
_result_; one of the machines cut the iron rod into proper lengths and
turned out seven screws complete per minute; with only the attendance of
a boy, it forms thirty-five gross per day. Two miles more partly along
the bank of the river, and amongst its beautiful scenery, brought us to
the Flat Rock, and we crossed by an inclosed wood bridge. One of the
dams which have been already mentioned is here formed, and there is a
canal on one side with locks for the passage of vessels;--the broad
cascade of the silvery waters sparkling in the sun over the dam, and the
high, broken, and wooded banks of the river, presented a scene, even
without the aid of foliage, enchanting. We returned by the old Lancaster
road, making a pleasant ride of about twenty miles. In the evening
called with D**** on Mr. H. This gentleman's life affords an instance of
successful industry, by no means uncommon in this country of enterprise
and speculation; it is also interwoven with some extraordinary
incidents. At setting out in life's {163} career he and a brother laid
out their several portions in goods such as they judged best for the
market, and with them sailed for this country: the venture proved
fortunate; the goods were quickly sold to great profit, and his brother
again set sail for England to purchase more with the produce. But here a
cruel disappointment awaited Mr. H., for his relative instead of
pursuing the intentions of his voyage, engaged on his arrival in Europe
in other speculations, lost the whole of the money, and his anxious
partner in America, when riches seemed already to be within his grasp,
received notice of his brother's misconduct, and found himself suddenly
reduced to his last shilling, in a foreign land, and without a friend!
Young and active, however, his mind bore up against poverty, and, though
at the age now of three and twenty, he took the resolution to bind
himself apprentice to a trade of which he already knew a little; at this
he served his time; by steadiness and application perfected himself in
the business; then set up for himself in prosperous times, and rapidly
made a handsome income, which he now comfortably enjoys. Let us here
venture reverentially to trace the moral justice of Providence in the
life of the brother, who, though enterprising and at one period
apparently prosperous, was reduced by successive losses;--{164} was
taken by the French and imprisoned for several years;--being at length
set at liberty he got together sufficient money to freight a vessel at
one of the southern ports of that country, but which in coming round
from thence for England was lost; and himself also soon after perished
at sea.

9th. Just returned from a shooting excursion in Jersey. We saw
pheasants, partridges, and rabbits, but few of any of these were shot:
the American pheasant seems half grouse, the partridge half quail, and
the rabbit half hare.[58] Buffon and the Abbè Raynal[59] have both
remarked that the animals of this continent are larger than those of
Europe, but the fox, pheasant, partridge and woodcock are all certainly
much smaller.--The Jersey horses are excellent hacknies, for a pair of
them drew us in a lumbering vehicle eight miles with ease in about an
hour along a heavy sandy road.

We have been told there are no taxes in America, or that they are few
and light; I insert therefore a copy of a tax paper handed to me by a
gentleman of Philadelphia.

  |       |  City.    |              |    Poor.   |      |       |   |
  |Rates. | 50 Cents. | Co. 25 Cents.| 30 Cents.  |Water.|Total. |   |
  |       |   100 $   |    100 $     |    100 $   |      |       |   |
  |$  Cts.|  $   Cts. |   $   Cts.   |   $   Cts. | .... |$  Cts.|   |
  |       |           |              |            |      |       |   |
  |88 : 00|  44 : 00  |   22 : 00    |   26 : 40  |      |92 : 40|   |

{165} Besides these there are still levied a poll-tax of one dollar; a
dog-tax of one dollar, and I believe some others. During the last war, a
tax was laid upon top-boots, watch-chains, part of household furniture,
and various other articles.--Horses and carriages are also virtually
taxed, for the assessor calling to put his queries in order to make out
the assessment asks, among other questions, "Does Mr. ***** keep a horse
or mare, a gig or other carriage?" and upon being answered in the
affirmative he increases the poll-tax in proportion: this district or
parish officer has, or I am misinformed, in great measure discretionary
powers, and as he is elected by _all_ the inhabitants of the district,
whether they do possess property or not, the consequence may be easily
foreseen.--Thus are the Americans pretty well taxed according to their
means of paying: in the country indeed taxes are very little if at all
paid, for the reason that the government either cannot or dare not levy
them; hardly indeed, in some places dare the owners claim the land
itself from the _Squatters_. An instance of this lately occurred in a
distant part of Pensilvania: a proprietor having heard of several
settlers upon his land without purchase or permission, mounted his horse
and journeying to his allotment soon came up to a good log house; a
Squatter was at his door, {166} and the owner, by way of entering into
conversation with him, observed that he had erected a comfortable
dwelling there; to which the other assented.--"But, my friend, I am told
that you and several more have built here without any title to the land,
and the owner is coming to remove you." The man, who had his rifle in
his hand, immediately pointing to a pig at a distance took aim and shot
it dead; then turning to the alarmed proprietor told him, that if the
owner should ever come to disturb him he would serve him as he had
served that pig.

_Sunday_ 12th. In the morning attended the episcopal church, a building
handsomely decorated withinside: near the pulpit, which was placed
within the altar, sat a Bishop in his lawn sleeves, &c. supported in a
chair of state of carved wood, the mitre surmounting the back;--he took
no part in the service, but I understood he would officiate in the
ceremony of admission to a young minister. In the middle of the service,
otherwise conducted with decency, a man with a money box came into every
pew to levy contributions for the support of the church. In the evening
went to the Presbyterian church, where we heard much singing. Here a
purse at the end of a long stick was thrust into every pew for
contributions: this mode of raising funds for whatever purpose is an

{167} Marriage is here a civil contract, though some parties have the
ceremony read by a minister; in general they may and do go before the
Mayor, a Justice, or as they are called here a 'Squire, and declaring
their resolution to take each other for man and wife, the contract is
binding. As to registers I understand they are very inaccurately kept,
if at all in many places, of either marriages, christenings, or burials,
which must occasion most profitable confusion for the lawyers.

Went with ***** to one of the many billiard tables in this city; the
game usually played is the four balls, two red and two white. This
seemed to me a very childish play and well suiting the table-keeper, as
from the facility of _cannoning_ the game is soon finished. Returning
home my companion proposed to dive into one of the Oyster Cellars, to
which agreeing we vanished in a trice, and entering the infernal abode,
the heat of which was at least that of a hot-house, we found a room well
lighted and boxes arranged like our coffee-houses, except that the
partitions were carried to the ceiling and the addition of curtains in
front.--We supped well upon stewed oysters brought upon a chaffing dish,
and a sallad of finely shredded raw cabbage and celery, which I found
very palatable; for these with beer we paid half a dollar, and again
rose to encounter the keen air of a {168} frosty night. It is I
apprehend these constant sudden changes of temperature, and not severity
of climate, which destroy the constitutions of many here, and render the
use of flannel next the skin indispensable.

No one will again say that this country is free from paupers when he
learns that there are subscriptions for the support of public soup
establishments, which find plenty of employment throughout the winter.
'Tis true the poor here seem to be more fastidious than with us, for a
pauper in my hearing the other day objected to some good cold meat
offered to her, because it was too cold for her stomach, and said she
would prefer some money if the giver pleased.

_Sunday_ 26th. Went with ***** to a Roman Catholic church: the altar
very handsome, but the architecture and decorations more calculated for
a temple dedicated to Venus, than for the sanctity of a christian
church. Between the pillars of corinthian order which supported the
altar was a view of the Holy City and the Temple, well painted in
distemper, and before this full as large as life the Crucifixion, the
first view of which sight of horror, must make a sickening impression;
but its constant presence deadens the feelings, and renders devotion
grounded upon it a mere ceremony, as the "nods and becks and wreathed
{169} smiles" between acquaintances coming in during the prayers plainly
proved. The priest on his entrance, being finely enrobed in a scarlet
velvet and worked muslin petticoat, commenced his operations by a very
hearty and plentiful use of his pocket handkerchief, which "I thought to
myself" might as well have been done before his entrée; he then with a
voice like a bull-frog began prayers, but after some progress turned
short round from the altar to the congregation and in very familiar
language said he was too hoarse to preach, but would, as I understood,
give them more prayers instead. He again during prayers took sudden
occasion to remind them of some particular day in the ensuing week, and
then finished the orisons;--the priest's voice was very pleasingly
relieved by the singing from the organ-loft, it was fine and impressive.
The ceremony of the purse was here too gone through and then we
departed, the organ playing very well but not very àpropos "_Adeste

An affair occurred last week at New York which caused a considerable
sensation,--a young man in a fit of angry malice stabbed another in the
open street with a concealed cane dirk. He fled, but was pursued and
taken: when brought before the magistrates twenty thousand dollars were
offered as bail for his appearance, which {170} has not been in this
case accepted; though I am told it is not at all uncommon here to take
bail in cases of murder, or rather manslaughter to speak technically. No
wonder then that duels of that assassin character are of so frequent
occurrence. It is common to practise beforehand on giving or receiving a
challenge, and I believe rifle-barrelled pistols have been used; if
after this a man is admitted to bail, let the assassin go free.

31st. After a long continuance of fine mild weather, in the mid-day
sometimes even hot, winter comes clothed in his thickest fleecy
covering, ushered in by as fine and gentle a rain as ever fell in
autumn; the snow is already a foot deep, and sleds, or as they are
called here sleighs, are moving in all directions. These carriages are
not only applied to the useful purposes of life at this season, but they
also afford an amusement much indulged in by all who can afford
it;--there are sleighs of various sizes drawn by from one to four
horses, and some of these carriages are of a form elegant enough, and
handsomely covered within by the rich furry skins of the Bear and
Buffalo; the horses wear belts of bells round their necks and bodies,
and also some at their ears; this, which is a legal regulation intended
to give notice of their approach, and thus to prevent accidents, {171}
is rendered an affair of ornament to delight the eye and the ear, the
bells being nicely assorted to harmonize, and affixed to handsome
leather belts. The fun and frolic consists in large parties forming a
cavalcade of these sleighs to some place of public resort at a distance,
where when arrived, the dance is struck up, hot wines are drunk as a
refreshment, and in the night, after a good supper, wrapped in furs and
huddled together, they drive helter skelter home not "alone by the light
of the moon."

Americans make amends for the want of originality of invention by a
quick perception and adoption of whatever is useful in other nations;
without owning that they do so, they servilely copy us in every thing;
for examples among so many, Savings Banks are adopted to great extent.
Lotteries are of as frequent occurrence as with us; schemes are for ever
publishing, and without any other difference than the substitution of
dollars for pounds; head prize, 20,000 dollars, second 10,000, and so on
down to 10 and 5. The state of pauperism has even obliged them to adopt
the before-mentioned soup institutions, which are now in daily action at
each quarter of the city, besides other places where bread, and at some,
clothing, is given away to proper objects of the charity; many of whom
they say are Emigrants {172} out of employ.[60] The newspapers indeed
are full of advertisements for employ, and societies are established by
Englishmen to relieve and forward poor emigrants to where their services
may be wanted; but I am informed by a subscriber that the applications
to them for working hands are just now but few: work would be plentiful,
but money is wanting, meanwhile Penitentiaries and prisons and
poor-houses are full! This does not form an inviting picture to the

Writers on the United States have too much said the _thing which is
not_, and too little the thing which is; consequently I entered the
country with impressions which have almost all been totally changed by
actual observation. We have been told that suits at law are here quickly
heard and as quickly determined: walking the other day in Philadelphia
with a gentleman, he pointed to some buildings we were passing, and
surprised me by observing that he had for _many years_ been disputing at
law the possession of them. My landlady too is engaged in a lawsuit of
many years standing, and of which she knows not the probable
termination. Whether these evils are some for which they may thank our
administration is {173} not here worth enquiring, as a wise nation
should have remedied them when it formed for itself a Constitution; but
in this and many other instances they still suffer under many of the
evils of which we complain.

In a statement of grievances drawn up by a Grand Jury at a late county
Assize in Pensilvania, it is complained that improper persons are put
into the commission of the peace, and of the improper conduct of such in
their magistracy: it also contains a strong remonstrance against the
practice in prisons of putting the tried and untried culprits together:
the bringing before the Grand Jury causes of a petty nature, and which
therefore should have been tried in inferior courts, is also objected

The militia laws here bear hard upon the Foreigner, towards whom they
are a vexatious tax. A residence in the country of, I believe, only six
months renders him liable to be called out, and enrolled, or to pay a
fine for absence; yet were a war to take place with the government to
which an enrolled stranger is subject, he is sent up the country,
instead of accepting of his military services; as it happened to the
English who were resident here during the last war, to the great
detriment of their affairs. The foreigner of course generally submits to
pay the fine rather than be {174} subject to the demand of a military
duty so unjust towards him; but that the practice of procuring
substitutes, should be gaining ground among the citizens themselves,
proves pretty clearly a falling off from the republican spirit. I have
somewhere met with the remark that the Athenians were so wholly devoted
to public life that they neglected the private virtues: the moderns on
the contrary, and the remark may be applicable equally elsewhere as
here, may be said to neglect their public interests in a constant
attention to their private affairs; when this is the case, parties may
hold intemperate language, journalists may snarl at each other, but all
will not preserve the liberties of a people who have ceased to be true
to themselves, when, from whatever cause, they shall hold back from
their public duties, more especially those which are military; they then
soon sink into effeminacy, lose that manliness of character which such
exercises would give them, and becoming indifferent to all else but
sordid gain, let their liberties sooner or later become the sacrifice to
despotism. A militia may not go through its evolutions so quick and
exact as a standing army--the latter is also a fine spectacle on a
field-day, when the sun shines--it is likewise, it must be confessed,
very enticing to indolence to be able to sit at home and nurse "its
dainty {175} sympathies" while the army is abroad fighting its battles;
but the Republic that would long preserve its freedom, that would truly
enjoy the shade of its own vine and fig-tree, must keep the sword belted
to its own side; must know how to use it, and submit with chearfulness
and energy to its military duties. A standing army and disarmed
population is the awful lever wherewith despotism and crooked policy
have everywhere overturned the temple of liberty.

But whither is fancy leading me to wander? forgetful that I am where
true liberty is unknown, or where the Goddess has only deigned to shed
the rays of her intelligence on the favoured head of a Washington, a
Franklin and a few others; while a spirit totally irreconcileable with
the noble, disinterested, high minded, true republican pervades each
bosom--money--gain--sordid gain is the predominant, almost the sole
passion; scarcely leaving room for vanity; which shews itself not only
in a firm belief and modest assertion that they alone among the nations
of the earth hold the palm in Arts, Arms, and Science, but also in the
important object of decorating the person. Reader--know, that the
tailor, hatter, bootmaker, here give to our modern Republican his rank;
and by the cut of his habiliments is known the circle in which he moves,
and in which he {176} must continue to move. As unbending an order of
aristocracy exists here as in any old court of Europe; and if an
unfortunate individual is known ever to have appeared in an inferior
circle, the ostracism banishes him for ever from the double refined
society of this upper order of store keepers.

_January_ 31st, 1820. Went last evening to attend service at the African
Church: a charity sermon was preached and the whole very decently
conducted. Contemplating however the sable countenances around us, the
observation that the black forms a grade just below the white again
occurred; 'tis true the former seems capable of all the common mental
exertions, so nearly equal with the white man that it must be confessed
he treads close upon his heels, yet notwithstanding, perhaps the result
of a close examination and comparison of their mental faculties might
shew as much difference between them as may be observed in the features
of the countenance. On whichever side the truth of the question may
lie, the general opinion in those States which have formally and
publicly called the men of colour "Men and Brothers" is pretty clearly
shewn in various ways--separate churches--civil disabilities, besides
such common advertisements in the daily papers as the following; which I
copy from the Aurora[61] of Friday, 25th March, 1820:--

  {177} BAKER'S


  For SALE:--A black girl 20 years old, and 8 to serve.
            Ditto 17 and 11 ditto.
            Ditto 13 and 15 ditto, from the country.
            Ditto 18 and 10 ditto.
            Ditto 13 and 15 ditto.
            A black boy 16 and 15 ditto, &c. &c.
  To BIND:--White boys 11, 12, 13, &c. years of age.
            White girls 8, 11, 12, &c.

Thus in free Pensilvania are blacks positively sold for a limited
period, and though the law does not allow the purchaser the power of
life and death over this sort of slave, yet to all other intents and
purposes he is in as complete subjection as any slave in Virginia or

We have lately attended service at the churches of the Anabaptists, the
Swedenborgians, &c.--Contemplating the various sects of religion in the
United States, men will be pleased or otherwise, according to their
private sentiments, to see the people on a Sunday quietly moving to the
places of worship belonging to their several persuasions, without the
least symptom of disrespect or rancorous spirit towards each other;
thus forming an exception to the rest of the globe.--Whether such a
state of religion will long continue, or whether, professing the same
end (happiness hereafter,) {178} they may at length unite in the same
means, one form of religion, time only will demonstrate: there are
indeed people who seem to be of opinion that it will end in no religion
at all; and I must confess thus much, that though theoretically it is
certainly pleasing to contemplate religion free from state trammels, and
each man walking before his God as his unbiassed conscience shall
dictate, yet, as religion ought to influence men's conduct in the world,
and "a tree is known by its fruit," it would be satisfactory to
perceive, as the result of such religious liberty, more probity in the
every day dealings between man and man than I have witnessed in the
United States. While they talk of the moral and religious principle; of
true liberty, honesty, &c. their actions belie their words, and make
them appear a nation of unprincipled atheists; by the bye, a description
of people perhaps more general over the world than we might be inclined
to allow; people, who outwardly profess belief in a Creator and future
Judge of our actions, yet whose daily acts contradict their professions.
But to return to America, where integrity is at so low an ebb at
present, that the nearest relative or friend can scarcely be safely
trusted. One instance of baseness and ingratitude, among the many, I
will relate. A man some time ago became insolvent--_retired_ for the
{179} usual period of five or six weeks, during which time he obtained
signatures of release from his creditors, and came out whitewashed: one
would naturally suppose that at least towards these men he would feel a
debt of gratitude as well as of money due, and he had soon an
opportunity of shewing it; for one of them, to whom he had been most
indebted, in his turn got into difficulties,--and what followed--the
scoundrel seized the occasion by the help of chicanery to turn his
former creditor into the street and sold up his goods! Can either a
religious or moral principle prevail where such things are _commonly_
perpetrated?--Can the laws be good?--Can the government be efficient?
Can a country last where such things pass as clever strokes of practice,
and the most successful swindler is praised as the _smartest_ fellow?

"Such things are;" and while they are, they furnish ground for such
philippics as the following; which I will insert, not because any calm
unprejudiced person or one _not writing for preferment_ can agree with
the pen of gall, but in the hope that America aroused at such anathemas,
may exert her better self, give vigour to her laws, and blot out these
foul deeds from the page of her history. Speaking of the principle of
honour, the writer expresses himself thus:--"Honour alone {180} will
indeed never make a great nation, but it will always preserve it from
dwindling down into thorough contempt. It has done much more for France
than ever virtue did. Without this semi-heroic principle she would have
been detestable indeed. I say not that she was ever anything very
desirable to boast of with it. America in this respect stands insulated
from all the world. She has neither a spark of true magnanimity about
her, nor any grace or colouring of it. She is equally destitute of
honesty and honour, of substance and semblance. She set off without an
established religion, and has now pretty well prepared herself for
needing none."

In another place he writes thus, "there is no saying what this same
America may turn out in the lapse of ages, or how far that unprincipled
Oligarchy may extend her growing plagues into futurity, which, at
present, exhibits the young serpents crawling out of their beds of
venom in every direction where the heavens may smile, or the air freshly
blow upon them, &c."[62]

Such sentiments as these, from a man professing himself a minister of
"the meek and lowly Jesus," are little calculated to fascinate and
render {181} any people the more inclined to a church establishment.

_February 3d._ What transitions of temperature!--the frost yesterday was
severe; the Schuylkill and even the Delaware frozen over, and skating
the order of the day; the thermometer at ten degrees below
freezing:--last night a heavy mild rain has fallen, and at mid-day now
the thermometer is at 40°.


I shall copy the account without comment; it needs none. Perpetrated
among a people who call themselves christians, and who boast of being
"the most free, the most enlightened, the most humane people on earth."

                            "Augusta, (Georgia,) Feb. 1, A. D. 1820.

    "On Friday last, two negro men, named Ephraim and Sam, were
    executed in conformity to their sentence, for the murder of their
    master, Mr. Thomas Handcock, of Edgefield district, S. C.--Sam was
    burnt and Ephraim hung, and his head severed from his body, and
    publicly exposed. The circumstances attending the crime for which
    these miserable beings have suffered, were of a nature so
    aggravated, as imperiously demanded the terrible punishment which
    has been inflicted upon them. [They had shot their owner while he

    {182} "The burning of malefactors is a punishment only resorted
    to when absolute necessity demands a signal example. It must be a
    horrid and appaling sight to see a human being consigned to the
    flames--let even fancy picture the scene--the pile--the stake--the
    victim, and the mind sickens and sinks under the oppression of its
    own feelings,--what then must be the dreadful reality! From some
    of the spectators we learn, that it was a scene which transfixed
    in breathless horror almost every one who witnessed it. As the
    flames approached him, the piercing shriek of the unfortunate
    victim struck upon the heart with a fearful, painful
    vibration,--but when the devouring element seized upon his body
    all was hushed: yet the cry of agony still thrilled in the ear,
    and an involuntary and sympathetic shudder ran through the crowd."

In consequence of the above, the following letter was addressed to the
editor of the newspaper.

    "To Z. Poulson,

                     "A Philadelphian in thy paper says, the burning
    of malefactors is a punishment never before resorted to in this
    country,--I wish the fact were so, but in the year 1800, the
    following was published, viz.

                                      "'Charlston, December 4, 1800.

    "'Yesterday was brought to trial, before Justices Johnson and
    Glover, Ben and Smart, two negro slaves, the property of Mr.
    Gregmiles, for the murder of Wm. Maxwell, ship carpenter.--The
    Magistrates and Freeholders were unanimous in bringing them in
    guilty: and further, from the circumstances of aggravation, that
    the punishment should be severe. They were accordingly
    sentenced--Ben to be carried between the hours of ten {183} and
    twelve this day, outside the tobacco inspection, and there to
    suffer death by being burned alive; the other, Smart, to be
    carried to the place where the murder was committed, between the
    hours of ten and four, and there to suffer the like punishment on
    Friday the 5th instant.'"[63]

That such scenes have at some period disgraced the annals of most
nations it must be acknowledged; for which even a faint shadow of excuse
may be found in the madness of fanaticism: that they are now sanctioned
by cold blooded sentences from a misnamed bench of justice, proves this
new continent to be some centuries behind in civilization; a fact
corroborated by several others, amongst the most glaring of which are
the perpetuation of the institution of slavery, and the frequency and
mode of conducting duel combat.

The first of these condemning facts has just been decided, after much
and violent debate in both houses of Congress; and only by the small
majority of four, a majority which in England would not carry a
question, the New State of Missourie is admitted into union with the
_free republic_ without any restriction as to slaves! In the course of
the discussion, the State of Virginia has gone so far as to throw out
hints hostile, should the question be decided otherwise than it has: and
in this it is understood she would have {184} been supported by the
other Slave States all deeply interested in the event; as, had the
abolition party prevailed, the next measure would have been an attempt
at general emancipation, which, if carried, would have been a death blow
to the paramount influence which Virginia now possesses in the general
government, owing to her extent of territory and population, and to the
law which gives to each slave-holder, besides his own vote, one for
every five negroes he has. These causes have hitherto enabled Virginia
successively to influence the choice of a President of the United
States. Another reason given by the politicians here why the last
mentioned State with Kentucky, and some others, may be careless of
maintaining the union is, that a debt of some magnitude is due from them
to the general Government for lands unpaid for, taxes, &c., and which,
being unable or rather unwilling to pay, they would cancel by a war. The
political and civil interests of the Slave States also frequently clash
with, or are in direct opposition to those which are called Free.

Another division of this immense country contemplated as probable, is
into eastern and western Governments, the Alleghany chain of mountains
to form the mutual grand barrier; and indeed I found the subject pretty
generally discussed in {185} the western country, the inhabitants of
which seemed well disposed to the measure.

On the subject of Duel combat mentioned above I would add a few words,
partly of general application, to the sentiments of so many already
delivered. Though the angry passions of some, and the foolish conduct of
others will perhaps continue to give cause for and never entirely banish
the necessity of appeal to arms; yet will all sensible men concur in the
opinion that it ought to be the last resort of injured honour, the
ultimate remedy to repel insult. As real christians, we should refuse it
altogether; but taking the world as it is (and that is very far indeed
from true christianity), the combat ought to be regarded as a serious
appeal to heaven, alone justifiable when human laws have failed to do us
right--when, however we may as a christian forgive the offender, we yet
cannot keep our honour and overlook the offence:--in such situations,
and fortunately such are very rare, a man has no alternative--he must
trust his cause to mortal arbitrement: but to rush to the combat for any
cause short of this is not true courage, for this is alone consistent
with right conduct;--it is irreligious, for religion forbids it--it is
immoral, for it tends to banish virtue and disorganize society;--it is
barbarous, for it belongs to the wild beast of the forest; and the {186}
people who have recourse to the combat on frivolous occasions cannot
therefore be placed lower upon the scale of humanity. If then these
sentiments be correct, what are we to think of those who can invite each
other to the field upon a dispute about their tailor's bill, or the best
mode of peeling a sausage, with other equally important occasions of
meeting among these mockeries of humanity. From the contemplation of
such, let us turn to behold the more serious mockery of all that is
right, in the chief Magistrate of a nation, and a considerable part of a
nation's council, publicly parading the funeral of a favourite naval
officer, who fell--not nobly fighting his country's battles, but
pointing at a murderous distance, with vindictive malice, the weapon at
the breast of his brother officer; on account of an affair too, with
which he had no concern, and for which even his own friends condemned
his interference! He fell; and his antagonist, who appears to have
attempted all which an honourable man could do to avoid the meeting,

After what has been said, it will not surprise the reader that a
store-keeper should put out a board to advertise the passenger that he
has "ten cases of Duelling Pistols on sale;" though it might to a
reflecting mind be little less hurtful to society than if he had offered
ten cases of {187} picklock keys, or some neat sets of combustibles for
firing houses or blowing up the inhabitants.

Went to visit the Dock-yard and to view a 74 upon the stocks; within the
hull of which it is said one of our 100 gun ships might be placed; and
in effect she is framed to carry as many guns at least, and those of a
large size. The plan of having all the guns of the same size appears to
be good in more respects than one; it prevents mistakes in loading
during action, as the same quantity of powder will be required for each
gun:--32 pounders are cast here I understood for the service generally.
The Americans seem alive to naval enterprise, and no doubt can be
entertained of their becoming very powerful, if they avoid internal
divisions and cordially join in effecting it. It will not be denied that
they have on several occasions at sea behaved gallantly; but the mere
trick of rating ships of war below their real force, by which they have
gained some few advantages, will no longer succeed, and was unworthy of
the adoption of a brave nation.


The mansion which the Government caused to be erected and presented to
George Washington for his residence, and which he, always like himself,
only accepted to give it up for the public benefit, is now devoted to
the medical and anatomical sciences, and is named the University of
Pensilvania.[65] By favour of Dr. Physic I was presented with a general
ticket of admission to the anatomical course. On entering the Lecture
room, which is spacious, it was pleasing to see in attendance about
three hundred students; it was not so pleasing however, to hear the
impatient noise kept up by their heels and sticks in the manner of our
play-house galleries, because the Dr. did not make his appearance quite
so soon as expected. This is both highly indecorous and shewing a want
of proper respect for a man of years and science. Dr. P. ranks high in
reputation, and I believe deservedly: his salary for the college duties,
which occupy his time for four months of each year, is about six
thousand dollars. There are several other courses of lectures delivered
here, all of which are numerously attended: at the concluding lecture of
a course on medicine given by Dr. Coxe, the very indecorous conduct of
the students in {189} hawking, spitting, and coughing, while some few
lay across the benches asleep, led me fully to expect a severe
reprimand, as they richly deserved, at the end of the lecture; I was
then much astonished to hear a short, diffident address from the Dr.
concluding with thanking them for their attention! This they applauded
with as much sense and propriety as they had before coughed, hawked, and
spat; by the way, these beastly habits I am told carry off numbers of
young men in early consumptions.

The Dr. took occasion in speaking on the subject of fermented liquors,
to reprobate, and it may be too justly, the wine merchants and brewers
of England for the custom of mixing deleterious ingredients in their

The practice of medicine in Philadelphia, New York, and other large
towns appears to be on a very respectable footing. Fees are high; on
which account perhaps it is that the operations of bleeding with the
lancet, cupping, &c. are still performed by barbers, and by other
ignorant people as formerly in England; in almost every street is a sign
put out[66] denoting that these {190} operations are performed within;
it may be supposed therefore that disorders of repletion are very
general. Dentists are well paid: at New York I had occasion for their
services, and a little Frenchman, who, though now in fashion as a
dentist, had, I afterwards heard, previously figured in the world as
marker at a billiard-table and in several other characters, was
recommended to me, and I sought his house: after extracting the tooth,
which he performed very well, he told me among other rhodomontade that
he only now practised "pour son amusement." I therefore doubtingly
requested to know if he took a fee upon such pleasant occasions, and
putting a note into his hand, he retained _only_ two dollars of it which
he pocketed also "pour son amusement." A lady paid to ****** twenty-five
dollars for plugging three teeth, and another was charged thirty-six
dollars for having her teeth cleaned. A midwife's common fee is
twenty-five dollars and frequently much more is given.

Empirics too here find a field whereon to gather in a harvest:
imitations of the bottles and labels of the most successful of our quack
medicines are made and openly advertised for sale to the imitators.
Holcroft[67] it is, I think, who, in his account of Paris mentions that
boards are to be seen fixed over doors with the inscription "ici on
{191} fait les avortemens." At Philadelphia one of the same infamous
race placards in large letters the corners of the principal streets with
"Obstructions removed at No. -- in ---- street."

_February_ 22d. Anniversary of the birth of George Washington. I suppose
it was that the people might be awakened early to pleasing thoughts on
this day, that a double drum accompanied by fifes went thumping through
the city at four o'clock in the morning. Soon after daylight all was
bustle and preparation. At ten A. M. we repaired to Washington Hall,
where an oration was to be delivered, in honour of the departed hero and
friend of his country, by a young student in the law, one of which
profession is annually chosen for the task; this being an opportunity of
becoming known, and a trial of ability, may be of much advantage to a
young man. A handsome spacious room surrounded with galleries was
appropriated for the ceremony; the ladies above, the male auditors
below. At the upper end was a raised platform for the Orator, the city
magistrates, a few military officers, &c.

During the arrival of the company, a band of about half a dozen wind
instruments stationed in the gallery above the platform, played some
airs, chiefly English, and pertinaciously continued their exertions
while the city militia with {192} drums, and fifes blowing a different
tune entered the room, and marching up, squatted down upon benches and
ordered their arms between their legs. The din was horrid, and the idea
of seating the military novel.

The Orator now entered and, accompanied by the public characters,
ascended the platform; seats being taken, the six wind instruments in
the gallery struck up the national air of "Yankee doodle," which
immediately set all the ladies nodding, jumping, and beating time, while
some heavy heels below tried to accord with them.--This air is surely of
all national airs the most unfortunate; to those of other nations we may
listen with delight;--the Swiss Ranz des Vaches--the Dutch "Orange
Boven"--the Marseillois' hymn of the French and our own coronation
anthem, and Rule Britannia, have all their several characteristics of
grand, plaintive, or inspiring; but Yankee doodle! What concatenation
can render it agreeable? What mental images can it conjure up worthy to
rejoice the hearts of a great nation![68]

Yankee doodle over, the Orator, a fine young man but of very inadequate
strength of voice, {193} advanced and commenced his address, in which I
was surprised to hear but little of the great character we were met to
recal to respectful memory. It was a rapid panoramic sketch of the
political situation of the several principal powers of Europe, with all
of whom he found fault; then weaving in an uncalled-for condemnation of
Napoleon (a great character, let history hereafter say what it may of
his errors,) he concluded with an unqualified approbation of the men and
measures at home; not excepting the late decision of Congress on the
Missouri question, which perpetuates slavery in the United States: in
short, he boldly affirmed that _their_ nation was alone the favoured one
under heaven where true liberty was understood and enjoyed, &c.

At the philippic against Napoleon, General H. L'A****d who sat near me,
though he does not converse in English, shewed well that he understood
it, by the indignant colour which rose to his face: the General was one
of Buonaparte's most attached officers, and being consequently
proscribed by the present French government, sought an asylum with
Marshal Grouché and many more on the shores of America. Here he now
resides truly a practical philosopher after the pomp and bustle of war
is over; after having borne a part in many campaigns; among {194} others
that of Moscow, and enduring the horrors of the retreat, eating
horse-flesh as a luxury, and subsisting for some time on sugar; and
lastly having been engaged at the final battle of Waterloo. He now lives
a quiet domestic man with his lady and infant, and employs himself in
writing upon subjects connected with his profession; upon which, as well
as upon general topics, he speaks with great ability and feeling, as one
who has thought much and deeply. It is with pleasure that I seize this
opportunity of inserting a few words of remembrance of this worthy man:
it is time that party proscriptions should cease in France, and I
heartily wish he may be reinstated in rank and fortune.

The address was of course received at its conclusion with thundering
applause; the drums, fifes, and wind instruments again joined in a Dutch
concert, and the audience dispersed. As we returned home I observed that
all the stores were kept open; no great proof of respect on such a day.

To instance further symptoms of slavery, and perhaps a little injustice,
in this free State of Pensilvania, where all men are declared equal by
the constitution, the people of colour are neither called upon to pay
the poll-tax as men, nor are they allowed a vote for representatives or
otherwise; {195} yet all taxes, the payment of which give no such
privileges, are exacted of them.

As this subject may not be again alluded to here, I insert the following
curious advertisement: it may give some insight respecting the public
mind upon more subjects than one.


    "To Southern and Western Planters

    "For SALE; one hundred prime Virginia-born Slaves, the property of
    a Planter who is contracting the scale of his business, and does
    not chuse that _all_ the produce of his land and labour should go
    into the pockets of manufacturers or fundholders. These Slaves
    will be sold all together or in families, to suit purchasers.
    Conditions, _Cash_, and _Removal not_ South of the State of
    Georgia. The condition of their removal is for their own

    "N.B. No proposals from any Slave Trader will be attended to.

    "The Proprietor of this property would prefer selling them all
    together, and would give a credit to any _Planter_, on receiving
    satisfactory [i.e. landed] security. No bank notes, bank stock,
    six per Cent, three per Cent, or other evidence of debt, public or
    private, domestic or foreign, will be received in payment; but
    _coin_ or _bullion_ will be taken at their lawful value or market
    price respectively.

    "----British or Portuguese gold or Spanish milled dollars would be

       *       *       *       *       *

    {196} "If the above-mentioned Slaves are not disposed of at private
    sale before the first Monday of November next, they will be sold
    at public auction on that day, at Lynchburg in Virginia.[69]

    "These Slaves were bred on the estate where they are now working,
    and are perfectly acquainted with the cultivation and curing of
    the best Virginia Tobacco.

    "Their ancestors were purchased by the ancestor of the present
    proprietor out of Guineamen, and they have been in the same family
    for several generations.

    "The best character can be given of them: among them are the best
    Blacksmiths perhaps in Virginia and several other Tradesmen,
    Carpenters, &c."

       *       *       *       *       *

28th. Visited the Playhouse--the piece represented was "The Battle of
Hexham;" very humbly got up but the parts respectably filled. It was a
full house, being a benefit night; we sat next to the stage-box in the
second row: the party who had obtained the front seats were a lady and
three gentlemen, two of whom kept on their horsemen's great coats and
one his hat the whole night; this custom is common here. As to the state
of the stage, it is not a subject worth entering upon; there is in fact
no American stage, the players being almost wholly English.

_March_ 3d. The meat market here is plentifully supplied with excellent
well-fed beef, good veal and mutton, though the Americans little {197}
esteem the latter. The poultry too is well-fed and fine. In order to
shew to what point of perfection feeding and grazing have reached, I
present the reader with some account of the annual Cattle shew,
prefacing it with the advertisement extracted from the Aurora Journal of
March 3d, 1820.


    "The public are respectfully informed that twenty-three head of
    Fat Cattle, eleven Fat Sheep, and two Fat Goats, advertised to be
    exhibited at the Merchants' Coffee-House, by Messrs. White,
    Shuster, Fryburg, Drum and Miller, may be seen at B. Graves's
    Drove-Yard and Cattle-Market; where the public generally are
    respectfully invited to view this magnificent and splendid shew of
    fine cattle of American production: such we believe as has never
    been exhibited for sale, in one day, in any city in the world, at
    all events never surpassed!!!"

These animals, such as were "_never before exhibited in any city in the
world_," I saw; and can vouch at least for their being very fat;--the
cattle were of middling size, and frame pretty good, yet judging from
their appearance, I should not have guessed that they possessed (to use
a grazier's phrase,) "an aptitude for laying on fat." Any particular
information of the length of time they had been feeding, or of the
quantity and kinds of food, was not obtained; but I suspect that though
their heads were large they had pretty {198} well _eaten them off_, (as
prize cattle are sometimes known to do in other parts of the world,) and
that the grand principle of grazing, laying on flesh with the least
expense of food, has not here been sufficiently attended to.

When slaughtered, another exhibition was made of the carcases, and they
all proved well, not excepting those of the goats which were very
fat;[70]--the tallow in some of the beasts weighed considerably more
than two hundred lb. and the carcases from eighty to one hundred and
thirty stone of fourteen lb. The whole sold for a quarter dollar
(13-1/2d.) per lb.; but previous to the sale, it was paraded about the
city in one-horse carts, attended by butchers in neat handsome white
frocks with insignia, and a military band of music _in a cart_,--a large
model of a ship upon wheels, having a lad dressed as a sailor in it
throwing the line, bringing up the rear. I have before had occasion to
remark a want of spirit, a flatness--I know not what to call it, among
the Americans upon public parades and holidays, when other nations are
all life and noise: not a hat was thrown up upon this occasion among the
crowd, not one hurrah, not even a smile was to be seen; but all passed
by with the quiet and order of {199} business: they all seemed to be
calculating how much the meat would sell for, or taking in large
draughts of conceit upon having the honour to attend the best beef _in
the whole world_!

Of the state of Agriculture, the little I saw is not worth a comment to
the English farmer. The price of all machinery is so high that it
precludes the general use of complex implements of husbandry, and the
unexhausted fertility of much of the soil, perhaps, renders the use of
them less obvious. Clovers are grown in this State in course of
cropping, and we may suppose by the following advertisement that they
begin to know the value of manure.

    "TO BE SOLD,

    "This day a quantity of Street Dirt, in Lots to suit Purchasers."

Of the present low price of land an instance may be given in the late
purchase of two hundred acres, six miles from Philadelphia, part good
grazing ground, and the rest of good quality, including a good and
newly-erected brick house upon it; for the whole of which the price was
five thousand dollars (about £5. 7s. 6d. sterling per acre.) I believe
that bargains as good, or nearly so, may now be made.

9th. For two days past it has rained and froze as it fell; the trees,
the ships, buildings, {200} &c. are all incrusted with icicles: the
strongest branches of the trees are every minute giving way and falling
under their loads. A ship at one of the wharfs, being neglected came
down, broke her masts against the wharf and the hull was sunk. In the
country the scene is brilliant and beautiful beyond description: a
letter from the neighbourhood says, "the spruce, the pine, and the
cedar, are coated with transparency, their limbs bending in every
fantastic shape, whilst the rich dark green of their leaves shows to
double advantage through the brilliant covering; the twigs of the yellow
willow may be compared to amber set in crystal; the red maple, and the
large berries of the sweet-briar, seem covered with pendant diamonds;
the trees at a distance appear to be loaden with blossoms, white,
glittering, and brilliant; but no description can convey an adequate
idea of the 'fairy frost-work.'"

_April_ 2d. As memoranda relative to the climate must be particularly
interesting to those who may think of emigrating, I notice, that this
day a heavy snow is falling, wind N. N. E.,--the Thermometer at eight
o'clock A. M., exposed in shade, 37° of Fahrenheit; yesterday it was
above temperate, but the two days before at the above hour of the
morning, as low as 31° and 32°: the apricots and other trees which have
already put {201} forth blossoms, must have been injured and many of the
trees will probably be killed. In consequence of these sudden extremes
of temperature, garden cultivation is difficult and uncertain, and the
market produce much higher than in England; a dollar is frequently given
for a cauliflower, and a quarter dollar (13-1/2d.) is considered a low
price; for a common cabbage I was asked nine cents (about 5d.,) and most
other vegetables bear a proportionate price.

Called yesterday upon Mr. H*****: the conversation turned upon the right
of primogeniture, a right which (scarcely deserving to be so called) is
not recognised here. It is true that a man is permitted to exercise it
in his testamentary dispositions, but it is scarcely ever acted upon. I
observed, that though the descent of estates to the eldest son was
strictly agreeable to the spirit of our government, yet many with us
wished its abolition were practicable, and were of opinion that this
would be a great point gained to the cause of rational liberty;
regarding it as strictly an act of justice, that a father should divide
his property evenly among children who all claimed an equal share in his
affection. In answer, he acknowledged, that his mind too was so strongly
impressed with the equal claim of children to a parent's support, that
he believed he might in his {202} own case act upon it: yet, he added,
that should he do so it would be entirely unaccordant with his actual
observation of its effects; for, out of very many instances which had
come under his observation, he had hardly known any which had succeeded;
the children had received their equal portions, but not the experience
necessary to proper management and economy, and consequently nine times
in ten they bought experience with every dollar, and in the end became
either idle, dissipated, good-for-nothing characters, or had at least to
begin the world again with nothing.--I asked how the children, in the
instances which he called to mind, had been brought up, and if they had
been placed out properly at first; for if so, it seems to be a manifest
advantage that a young man should possess a sum of money for immediate
support and with which to start in life. He said, that in many cases the
parents had given excellent educations, but he acknowledged that they
had died before the children had been well introduced into life. "Were
it otherwise," he observed, "were the parent to live long enough to
induce habits of industry and economy, and to see his children well
settled in their respective professions or trades, there can be no
objection to their being equally portioned; else, an elder brother,
especially if he conducts himself worthily, {203} forms a sort of
support to the rest of the family, a point d'appui, which preserves a
share of respectability to them that in America they experience the want
of; he keeps together that property which would otherwise probably be
squandered, that respectability which would otherwise be lost."

3d. Mr. K*** having some business to transact at Washington, the
metropolis of the United States, I took the opportunity and agreed to
accompany him. We left Philadelphia at mid-day, in the steam boat bound
for the small town of Newcastle, on the Delaware, distant about forty
miles; price of passage one dollar and a half: there were twenty-four
passengers on board; a fine day over head, but snow lay upon the ground
and the air piercingly cold. Arrived at Newcastle a little before five
P. M., where stages numbered 1, 2, 3, &c. were waiting to take
passengers eighteen miles over the neck of land which here divides the
Delaware from the Chesapeake Bay: previous to landing we had each a
ticket, numbered, given to us, which each one took to the stage of
corresponding number by which he was to go, and this plan prevented all
disputes and confusion.

Having all taken our seats in these vehicles, which are a sort of
covered waggon having {204} benches placed in rows across, and the
luggage being adjusted, they started in cavalcade, and in little more
than two hours and a half arrived upon the shore of Chesapeake Bay. It
was now dark, but everything was quickly removed into another steam
boat, much larger than the first, and without any loss of time its
wheels were set in motion and we proceeded for Baltimore at the rate of
about ten miles an hour, bringing-to at the wharf there about three
o'clock next morning. The steam boats here have been already frequently
described, I shall only observe therefore that they are of great length,
capacious, and as comfortable as carpets, stoves, good beds, and good
meals can make them: this had three cabins, two aft and one before,
containing altogether fifty-eight births. There are a set of regulations
hung up which are strictly observed; one is that no smoking is allowed
except upon deck; another, that no portmanteau or trunk be admitted into
the cabin: travellers will do well therefore to take a sacde-nuit with
them for the few things they may want at night; let them not forget too,
to bring some book to their taste in case of a want of conversation, for
Americans are in general rather reserved. The conversation here was
chiefly upon the recent fatal duel between Commodores Decatur and
Barron; it seemed to be {205} the general opinion that the latter could
not with honour have avoided the meeting: one gentleman observed that
the right man had fallen, both on account of his conduct towards Barron,
and also for his quarrelsome disposition and general seeking such
combats; he had, he said, previously killed three antagonists, of whom
two were English.

These American stages or caravans carry all the passengers withinside,
an arrangement which renders travelling with servants expensive: we were
eleven young and old, closely packed, and jumbled away at the rate of
seven or eight miles an hour, without interest; for we could only catch
a glimpse of the country now and then by lifting up the side leather.
Soon after noon we came in sight of the Capitol, and were set down at a
large Tavern near to it.

The dirt, ill-arrangement and absence of common comforts in an American
tavern or hotel have already been expatiated upon amply; but to meet
with such things under the walls of the Capitol, at the very seat of
government, I was not prepared. On entering the Hotel, a poor lad, whose
dishabille of dirt and rags defies description, came with a brush, which
he was making less fit for use by rubbing its bristles upon his dirtier
hand, to ask if he should brush our coats. We enquired {206} for a room
up stairs to shave, &c., and though past one o'clock not a bed had been
made, or a breath of acceptable fresh air permitted to blow into these
chambers of contamination!-Having finished the toilette as well as we
were able, our first visit was to the Capitol.

It stands finely upon the edge of a high commanding ridge, from whence
with one sweeping glance one views the subjacent ground down to the
Potomac river, and the elevated country beyond; to the right is seen
George Town and the most populous part of Washington, the President's
House, the Post-Office, &c. but alas! excepting these and a few other
mostly dispersed buildings, the horse, the cow, and the swine, still
graze quietly around the Capitol of Washington. Viewing however the
beautiful site of this city with the eye of its venerable founder, and
with him letting imagination cover it with houses and "the busy hum of
men," if we then look round for the attractions of support for this
multitude, the illusion vanishes. Commerce cannot but with difficulty
flourish upon the shallow bed of the river, and agriculture may long
strive for success in vain, with the surrounding sterility. Wherein then
must the motive of the statesman be sought for founding a city in a
place favourable alone to the eye? Could he make a mistake? {207} That
is not probable. Could it be to favour his native State, or to gratify a
whim? This is not consonant to the character of his great mind. A despot
of Russia might build a city upon piles vainly to shew posterity his
power: Frederick of Prussia might have his Potsdam; but Washington ever
kept utility in view, and never aimed to gratify a vain wish at the
expense of his fellow creatures. It is then suggested, that, impressed
with the importance of quiet deliberation, he fixed the seat of
government upon a spot so unattractive to the multitude that their
representatives might be unbiassed by faction.

Of the Capitol the centre is yet to rear its head, the wings alone are
finished; these contain the Hall of Representatives and that of the
Senate--a Library[71]--a Post-Office for the Members--Committee Rooms,

The Hall of Representatives is of semicircular form; a beautiful
colonnade of native with capitals of Italian marble, ranges along within
the semicircle and its base, with rich crimson and fringed curtain
drapery between the columns. The President's _throne_ is placed on the
centre of the base and fronting the semicircle, the seats and desks
{208} for the Members ranged so as to radiate from it; the whole area is
covered with a rich and rather gaudy carpet.

The Hall of the Senate is as studiously plain as that of the
Representatives is gaudy; in the same form, but upon a much smaller
scale, and the gallery is only upon the base of the semicircle, so that
a spectator here fronts the Members;--the style of decoration throughout
is far preferable to the other.

Of the debates on the tapis I can say but little, not having had time
sufficient to give them much attention,--they were apparently carried on
however with more decorum than from report I had reason to expect,
except that the exercise of spitting upon the beautiful carpet was
continued as everywhere else; the walls of the stairs and the stairs
themselves also were covered with the saliva of tobacco chewers.

It being an expected compliment from strangers coming to the Seat of
Government to pay their respects to its head, we drove down to the
President's house, at the hour appointed; it is a handsome stone
building, which has now been restored and repaired since the shock given
to it by the English; but the gardens and pleasure grounds, reaching
down to the banks of the Potomac, and extending again up to the Capitol,
are as yet only {209} to be seen upon paper; rude nature still rules
absolute over the tract. Remains of the late snow yet lay in the shade,
and negligence, studied or accidental, had left it upon the flight of
steps to the President's house, an old plank being laid upon the landing
that visitors might get dry to the door. A servant, not a _man of
show_, admitted us into a plain hall, and ushered us up stairs to the
private apartment in which we found Mr. Munroe seated alone at his
bureau with various papers before him; he arose at our entrance, and
himself placed chairs for us, which his _independent_ servant had left
the room without doing. Mr. Munroe appeared a plain quiet man in dress
and manners, the English country gentleman with a physiognomy which bore
marks of deep reflection: a conversation of ten minutes on indifferent
subjects terminated our visit, when, instead of formal etiquette he gave
me a friendly shake of the hand with a "God bless you," spoken in a
pleasing tone, which left upon me a very favourable impression.

The other objects of our curiosity were, the Naval Dock-yard, George
Town, the Patent Office; at this last, we were much amused by the
various models, amongst which, though I shall not attempt minutely to
describe them, may be enumerated a car propelled with the hands by a
{210} easy and very simple contrivance, a model of machinery applicable
to propelling boats instead of the steam engine, several models of
bridges, a cotton-carder, a plough having its beam turn upon a centre to
save the trouble of swinging it round at the land ends; these were among
the inventions most attracting our attention, and I now mention them as
a remembrancer to good machinists who may have an opportunity of viewing
them. George Town is an extensive place and pretty thickly settled; and
it much resembles our more populous villages adjoining to London; the
road is excellent between it and the Capitol, and to the foot of the
hill is lined with houses many of which are good, substantial, handsome

In the Naval Dock there was little to review worth mention to an
English reader; we saw a clumsy monument, erected we were told to
commemorate the burning of a frigate at Tripoli by Commodore Decatur. On
the stocks was a frigate as they denominated it, but which appeared to
be of a size equal to our second rate; and at the forge an anchor was
forming of 10,000lb. weight. These were the chief objects which
attracted attention. On account of the recent loss of Decatur it was the
fashion to be very dull, and no _drawing-room_ has been held since his
death: we passed the evening with Mr. ****, a Member {211} of Congress,
who had obligingly shewn us whatever was thought worth viewing, and some
amusement was afforded at a lecture upon the laughing gas, in seeing its
ludicrous effects upon several individuals of the company who inhaled

The following morning, my compagnon-de-voyage having finished his
business, we quitted Virginia, and in twenty-eight hours were landed
again at the Fish-market wharf in Philadelphia.

Fish is well supplied here in quantity but not in variety: it has
hitherto chiefly consisted of a coarse kind called _Sea Bass_, but now
the Shad fishery is just commencing; these fish come up the large rivers
in shoals, and are caught in hundreds at each haul with the seine; they
are a very oily fish and weigh from two or three to ten pounds and
perhaps more; being a plentiful season they are just now bought of the
fishermen at the price of five dollars a hundred, and have been lately
as low as three dollars. In the season of 1818, they sold at sixteen and
seventeen dollars a hundred. Many parties are formed during the season
to see them caught and to partake of them fresh from the water; one of
these being made we took a boat, which carried us under a pleasant
breeze down the river to a place called Gloucester Point, here the
shore suiting we saw several seines hauling, and upon the beach caravans
{212} waiting to convey the fish, as quick as caught up the country,
where they are cut open, cleaned, salted down, and many of them smoked,
contributing very largely to the winter food of the Americans. The
Herring season comes on here immediately after that of the Shad, but it
is not near so much reckoned upon.

Out of the produce of one of the hauls two fish, of about seven or eight
pounds each, were taken, and quickly brought to table in excellent
order;--the mode of dressing is to open the fish, nail it to a board and
place it before a fire; it is thus _toasted_, and being brought in upon
the board quite hot proves very good eating. In the room where we dined
were hung up a printed set of rules of a fox-hunting club; but how the
chase can be followed on horseback through a country so uncleared and
undrained, it is to me a mystery--must too often prove like that of
Caliban and his companions following the music of the invisible Ariel,
"through toothed briars, sharp furzes, pricking gorse and thorns," and
ending "i' the filthy mantled pool;" dry clothes and a cigar the best
enjoyment of the day. By the way we had a specimen here of the early
initiation into the habit of smoking; a fine child of only about three
years old was very coolly walking about and puffing a cigar, while he
looked on at our pastime {213} at shuffleboard, an obsolete English
game, it is said, though new to our party. The day had been delightfully
fine; but, tempted by the game, we lingered too long at the amusement,
and on the return encountered one of those violent squalls of wind and
rain which are so common here in spring; it suddenly blew tremendously,
and our little sail was with difficulty taken in--the party luckily all
sat steady, or we might not have escaped with the inconvenience alone of
a thorough wetting and spoiled finery.

9th. Incendiaries have lately been dreadfully alert--the whole city is
under nightly apprehension of fire, and hardly a day passes without
alarm, the roll of fire engines with the dismal horns of the attendants
are constantly sounding in our ears: threatening letters have been
received, and many buildings actually burnt down. The Theatre was
consumed late on Sunday evening in a short space of time, fire having
been laid in several places; snow, which lay in the streets, by adding
to the reflection of light increased the tremendous effect. The cause of
these crimes is sought for by some people in religious bigotry; others
look with suspicion on the black population; and some, not without
grounds, have attributed these diabolical deeds to some unprincipled
white people of even respectable connections. To save themselves {214}
from these unknown desperadoes the inhabitants of each district or
parish, have formed themselves into patroles, relieving each other
nightly; the watch is doubled and every precaution taken.

18th. The cry of "fire," which begun here, spreads;--Baltimore and New
York are suffering from incendiaries, who are now supposed to be
mechanics, many of whom are out of work and most working for low wages.

This general state of alarm and real insecurity naturally increases the
anxious wish once again to breathe English air. The sails are unfurling
for departure, and I should quit a country without regret where hope
supported by theory has met with disappointment, were it not that,
during my residence, I have found a few individuals whose worth entitles
them to a lingering, painful farewell. Such characters support a state
amidst the vice and folly of the million. They fill with respectability
any station, for their hearts are good; and of such were America
composed there would be little to say against her sons. As, however,
this is not the unalloyed lot of any the most perfect assemblage of
mankind, the United States may be supposed to stand upon at least
equally fair ground with others; that she may do so in time I cannot
deny,--that she does so at present is not my opinion: and truth compels
the avowal, that {215} actual observation of the effects of republican
Government, as mankind are at present constituted, are not favourable to
the improvement of their nature, or the cultivation of those high
qualities which we may all admire but cannot all possess. Nor is it
necessary that we should: they can alone be brought to perfection by
attentive education; which subsequent reading, observation, leisure, and
deep reflection may refine into the legislator, the philosopher, the
statesman and all of that rank in society so essential to good
government, united with general polish of manners. Now this portion of a
community needs evidently to consist of but few, which are sufficient
for the important parts they take; while the rest are immersed in the
equally necessary affairs of trade, traffic, handicraft, &c., falling
into the ranks suitable to their capacities; but that this latter class,
even if they could conveniently forego their daily speculations and
cares, can be expected to act with proper dignity, penetration,
propriety and tact in the character of legislators and other high
offices of common weal, is an expectation too absurd to need an
argument. Do I then prefer the Government of my own country? I do prefer
it; even with all its many faults to the present mob influence of the
United States: and America must so far get rid of it as to let talents
rise into respect, {216} and form a rank in society which she now
abhors,--she must too, gain more efficiency to the executive part of her
Government or..........................................................
I should expect as soon that the good citizens of London, who are
certainly a very worthy body of men in their proper stations, should
become superior to the court in high knowledge and refinement of
manners, as that America can ever be well-conducted under a Government
composed of men who are otherwise engaged in mercenary speculations of
trade and commerce; these may sharpen the wits but will never elevate
the understanding.

_May_ 10th. At sea. The farewell is over; the tear has fallen; and the
hearty gripe of the hand between those who "may ne'er meet again" may
not be forgotten. The anchor weighed, no longer impeding the ship's
course; the last friendly wave of the handkerchief (meaning more then
than is afterwards remembered) has been answered; and we now pledge a
health "to those far away" with feelings of regret, not unmixed with
those of anticipated pleasure at the prospect of again beholding our
native shore.

The progress down Delaware Bay was rough and tedious; easterly winds (an
uncommon occurrence,) blowing steadily against us, and the tides alone
favouring; we have been from the 2d {217} of the month working out. Off
Lewistown we lay two days at anchor; pilot boats came off to the ship,
and weather being fine, and some few additional stores being wanting, a
party was made to go on shore; an excursion which had nearly ended
disastrously. Those who have been at sea are well enough acquainted with
the difficulties of getting down and up a ship's side, into one boat,
and then from that into another, landing upon a surfy beach, &c. After
experiencing all this we got on shore pretty well, and proceeding for
the town were agreeably surprised to find a neat village, though
apparently it has seen better days: the soil a dry sandy gravel, and the
country around a good black loam and clay. Almost for the first time we
saw in America pretty neat gardens well stocked with flowers, in which,
and in the neatness of their houses, the owners seemed to enjoy much
satisfaction. It might partly be the effect of land after five days
tossing upon the water that we fancied this place so pleasant, and that
we thought, if retirement were the object, a man might well seek it
here: several of the inhabitants very civilly invited the party into
their houses and gardens, and a rich bouquet of flowers was presented to
us by a very handsome interesting girl the daughter of one of the
proprietors;--may her beauty last long, and herself meet not {218} the
fate of the flowers she gave;--they were lost and scattered to the winds
on our passage to the ship, during which we had sufficient employment to
take care of ourselves alone.

The female portion of American society has occupied so little of our
attention, that I fear the omission will be considered by the ladies
here as the most material and least excusable fault; for, as a drama
without female beauty and devotion to it, is hard to manage with
interest, so a traveller's journal which shall contain no pleasing
observations upon the lovely half of our species must expect their
unqualified disapprobation. Yet would I deprecate their anger, and place
my defence best perhaps upon the cause for my silence--where it is our
anxious wish to admire, it grieves us to find fault; especially if we
cannot qualify our observations with some praise.--Yet, having entered
upon the subject, truth urges on the pen to record my impressions,
however unfavourable they may prove. As, in the general character of
the men so little can be found to tally with the best drawn models of a
noble republican, so has the education of the women been totally
mistaken. Light and darkness are not more opposite than the Roman matron
and this modern female republican, who is equally destitute of the
sedate, retired manners so attaching {219} in my own countrywomen, as of
the lively wit and fascinating manners of the French females; though,
covered with the finery of the latter, the poor things are taught to
believe they must be as engaging; possessing forms, too, not at all or
the least possible en bon point. Brought up entirely ignorant of every
real domestic duty, the method taken to remedy this error, previous to
their marriage and consequent entering upon those duties, is truly
laughable--they are sent to some cook and confectioner as pupils to
learn economy and make pastry! and after a practice in tarts,
cheese-cakes, bon bons, &c. for a few weeks, are declared fit to
undertake the important concerns of a wife and mother! Receiving from
nature but little apparent warmth of constitution, they neither excite
interest by intrigue, nor respect by the domestic virtues, and become
completely insipid beings;--is it then surprising that with minds so
prepared for frivolity, they should be bent alone upon extravagant and
childish decoration of their persons, which, together with their total
ignorance of domestic economy, is for ever bringing their husbands to

It will of course be understood that the above observations relate
chiefly to the inhabitants of the Eastern parts; and that there are
exceptions to be made within the range of this immense territory. {220}
The lovely brunette, the immediate cause of these reflections, is an
instance; and for a general one, as to form and features, may be
mentioned the women of Kentucky.--But it is time that we return to our
boat. On regaining the beach we found it laying _high and dry_, the boys
left in charge of her crying with vexation and fear of the Captain's
displeasure at their not being able to keep her in the water. An awful
black cloud brought on by a violent squall just at this instant began to
pour down a deluge of rain, in the midst of which we were all exerting
ourselves, some in the water and some out, to launch the boat; which
having with great difficulty accomplished, to jump into her and
immediately pull the oars and keep her head against the sea was next
with great efforts effected; and in this had we not succeeded, she would
inevitably have filled instantly. We now got through the breakers, and
drenched with rain and sea pulled away for the pilot boat, into the
small cabin of which we dived, and felt comparatively safe from the
squall which increased accompanied with thunder and very vivid
lightning. Near an hour and a half now passed in working up to the ship
though the distance did not appear great; and then the pilot would not
be persuaded to lay us alongside for fear of the consequences to his
boat in coming in contact with the ship on the {221} rough sea; so that
we were compelled to get out and brave the elements again in the small
boat, a thing not easily managed, having a lady of the party; the boat
was deep in the water, the sea ran high, and the Captain allowed, after
we were happily received on board just as the darkness of night
prevailed, that the chances had been against it. Here again we proved
that "delays are dangerous," the unnecessary one of an hour occasioned
all our troubles, and might have sent us to the bottom; not to expatiate
upon the loss of a large heap of purchased oysters which, having enough
to do to save ourselves, were left upon the beach for the finder. Upon
the whole, however, we had reason to be pleased with this little trip
and farewell to the shore; it had effected a softening of unfavourable
impressions; we had unexpectedly met with youth and beauty, native
feeling and taste, neatness and comfort, and we departed in charity.

A dismal midnight leave of Columbia's shores followed. After riding out
another day of "hard hearted winds," attended by thunder and lightning,
the anchor was once more weighed, and as night approached, we succeeded
in gaining the mouth of the Bay with a sufficient "slant of wind" to get
out. The darkness now became extreme; and about eleven o'clock the pilot
quitted the ship {222} and went on board his attending boat, leaving his
best instructions in what manner to steer; yet a little apprehensive on
account of the rocks called "Hen and chickens," and some other shoals
which were yet to be passed. Two other vessels, the sounds from which
could now and then be heard, were working out at the same time; their
pilots having also left them, their lanthern lights, which had been
watched with some comfort, were extinguished as well as our own; and we
turned in to behold land no more until we might hail the white cliffs of

10th. Our good ship, the Factor, has now fairly taken her departure, and
is "walking away" with a tolerably fair breeze. A fine sky smiles
overhead, and the two ships and several more are in view; one of our
consorts has borne down and spoke, she is bound for the East Indies and
heavily laden. Some immense flocks of small birds are seen attending
upon shoals of mackarel, urging on their way to meet destruction upon
the coasts of America.--But it is not my intention to detail at length
the events of the passage:--we experienced, as many have done before,
black heavy clouds rising in successive squalls; the ominous porpoise in
shoals leaped forward above the wave, and darting in again shot swiftly
along seeming to contend with the ship in velocity. The fog {223} bank
at early morn sometimes displayed its illusive scenery of land, trees,
lakes, and mountains; pleasing as the visions of young Hope, and as
unsubstantial. Occasionally we watched--

  "The course of the far distant sail
  'Till shapeless and lost to the view"

pressing onward over this world of waters to gain the hoped-for port;
and if by chance a vessel passed near enough to speak, it was an event
highly interesting to all.

The first two weeks were rendered tedious by contrary winds and calms,
but during the rest of the passage the breezes seemed to blow on purpose
to forward us; and at length, on the 1st June, we beheld the high land
of Erin bearing exactly as our Captain[72] had calculated; indeed it is
but justice to him to say that his lunar and other observations were
throughout correct. He is a brave and worthy man from whom we
experienced every polite attention to comfort during the passage. We now
bore up the channel with a strong but favourable breeze, and passing
Holyhead took in a pilot, and the following morning the Factor was
brought safely into dock at Liverpool (in a hard gale however,) in
twenty-four days from leaving Delaware Bay.

{224} Having arrived in terrâ cognitâ again, I think it the proper place
to take leave of the reader. Should Fortune, unpropitious at home--the
spirit of enterprise--or any other motive, ever induce him to seek the
shores of Columbia, he has my best wishes for success, if he shall
deserve them; and should any of the hints here given prove conducive to
it, my end is answered. And let Americans cease to show anger at the
observations of those travellers who have visited their country: though
unfavourable the reports we give, they are the best proofs of the
friendly interest we take in their welfare, and of the hopes we
entertain of what they may in time become. Their soreness upon the
mention of their faults is truly unreasonable, for they are such as they
may amend. The man who should laugh at a blind eye or a wooden leg would
be silly and illiberal; but if satire is levelled at curable failings
the wise will take it in good part.


[1] The number of passages to America already published might, in the
opinion of some, be a reason for suppressing this; it is hoped however,
that it will not be found altogether useless or uninteresting.--WELBY.

[2] The Ship had grounded upon the Margate Sands; always dangerous,
owing to their constantly shifting with the tide: just before our own
misfortune, we had seen an homeward-bound East Indiaman aground and
lightening her cargo into small craft.--WELBY.

[3] _Cobbing_ is a punishment inflicted by tying the culprit to the
windlass, when each man in turn gives him two or three blows with the
flat side of the carpenter's saw.--WELBY.

[4] Let me here caution any passenger against offering money to a
custom-house officer on this side the water; they are well paid, and do
not take money, as in other countries, to betray the interests of the
government, that they may live.--WELBY.

[5] The charge here, at any one of the City taverns, for cleaning a pair
of boots, is a quarter dollar (13-1/2 d. of our money).--WELBY.

[6] Mr. Fearon's.--WELBY.

For a brief note on Fearon, see Flint's _Letters_, volume ix of our
series, note 119.--ED.

[7] I have since seen beggars.--WELBY.

[8] An account of Joseph Bonaparte's career in America will be found in
volume xi of our series, note 36.--ED.

[9] It was burned down, it is supposed by incendiaries, the following
winter, and many valuable pictures and much furniture and papers

[10] Franklin did not present a library to Philadelphia, but he is
properly regarded as the founder of the Philadelphia Library, which he
called "the _mother_ of all the North American subscription libraries."
Conceiving the idea of establishing such an institution, he drew up a
plan (1731), and solicited subscriptions among his friends. By March
following, twenty-five persons had paid their subscription of forty
shillings each, and an order was sent to England for books. Franklin
continued to take an active interest in the enterprise, aiding in
selecting books, and from time to time donating volumes. The
Philadelphia Library now occupies two large buildings, and contains over
190,000 volumes.--ED.

[11] In his will Franklin left £2,000 (still due him for his salary as
president of Pennsylvania) for the improvement of the Schuylkill River.
Learning that that work of improvement was likely to be delayed, he made
a codicil revoking the bequest to the Schuylkill improvement, and
devoting it to a scheme of continuous benevolence--£1,000 each were
given to Boston and to Philadelphia; under the direction of a certain
board of selectmen, small sums (not exceeding £60), were to be loaned to
young married artificers at five per cent interest. He estimated that in
a hundred years the principal would be vastly increased, and the greater
part was then to be devoted to public works. However, many borrowers
were unable to repay, and their security proving worthless, the sum at
the end of the first century was far below Franklin's expectation.--ED.

[12] The cent is about the value of one half-penny; one hundred is four
shillings and sixpence sterling.--WELBY.

[13] The traveller's route westward was by way of the Lancaster Turnpike
and the Pennsylvania Road, through Bedford and Greensburg to Pittsburg.
For this route, see Harris's _Journal_, volume iii of our series, note

[14] Cove Mountain forms the western boundary of Franklin County. The
road crosses it about fifteen miles west of Chambersburg. Scrub Ridge
lies parallel to Cove Mountain, a few miles to the west.--ED.

[15] For Bloody Run, see Cuming's _Tour_, in our volume iv, note 18. It
is now Everett, Bedford County. The battle was not with the natives, but
between a band of enraged frontiersmen and a party of Indian traders who
were illegally supplying the savages with firearms.--ED.

[16] For the early history of Greensburg and Pittsburg, see volume iii
of our series: F. A. Michaux's _Travels_, note 16; A. Michaux's
_Travels_, note 11.--ED.

[17] A brief account of the founding of Washington and Canonsburg
(Jefferson) College may be found in Harris's _Journal_, volume iii of
our series, note 31.--ED.

[18] In 1816 and the years immediately following occurred what is
locally known as the "college war." Reverend Matthew Brown, pastor of
the first Presbyterian church at Washington, who had been president of
Washington College since its incorporation (1806), was asked to resign,
and Reverend Andrew Wylie was called from the presidency of Canonsburg
College to succeed him. Much bitter feeling was aroused, to the great
injury of both institutions.--ED.

[19] For the early history of the National Road, see Harris's _Journal_,
note 45; and for its extension beyond Wheeling, see Woods's _English
Prairie_, in volume x of our series, note 76.--ED.

[20] I have often been called upon to pay a dollar for passing over a

[21] The Lancasterian Academy was founded at Wheeling by the bequest of
Noah Linsly, formerly a tutor at Williams College. It received its
charter in 1814, and is said to have been the first chartered school in
a slave state granting free education to the poor. The name was derived
from the Lancasterian system of education, founded by Joseph Lancaster.
See our volume xi. The institution is now called Linsly Institute.--ED.

[22] Mr. Fearon says the state of Ohio is one continued level, he must
mean that part of it about Cincinnati; the chief part of the state is
exceedingly hilly.--WELBY.

_Comment by Ed._ Ohio is hilly only in the southeastern portion, the
part traversed by Welby. He travelled along the State Road, which
followed the old Zane's Trace through St. Clairsville, Zanesville, and
Chillicothe to Maysville, Kentucky.

[23] The Dunkards, or German Baptists, began to come to America about
1719, joining with the Mennonites in Germantown, Pennsylvania. In
general, their belief was like that of the Quakers, save that they
observed the ordinances of baptism and the Lord's Supper. A sect
separated from the main body, and established a monastery at Ephrata,
Lancaster County. A considerable number emigrated into western
Pennsylvania and the Shenandoah Valley.--ED.

[24] For the early history of Chillicothe, see F. A. Michaux's
_Travels_, volume iii of our series, note 35.--ED.

[25] For a sketch of the founding of West Union, see Hulme's _Journal_,
volume x of our series, note 39. Concerning Bainbridge, consult Faux's
_Journal, ante_, note 109.--ED.

[26] This was probably the common poison ivy (_Rhus

[27] From another party which passed, I learned that the well-known
Colonel Boon is still alive in the Missourie country; though the
journals lately gave a circumstantial account of his death.--WELBY.

_Comment by Ed._ Boone died September 26, 1820.

[28] This was the last important Indian cession in Ohio. September 29,
1817, the Wyandot, Seneca, Delaware, Shawnee, Potawatomi, Ottawa, and
Chippewa ceded a large tract bounded on the east by the previous treaty
line--namely, a line drawn south from a point a few miles east of the
head of Sandusky Bay, and on the south by the old Greenville treaty line
(see Evans's _Tour_, in our volume viii, note 51), and the St. Mary's

[29] For the early history of Blue Licks, see Cuming's _Tour_, in our
volume iv, note 117.--ED.

[30] For a brief account of Lexington, see A. Michaux's _Travels_,
volume iii of our series, note 28.--ED.

[31] An account of the early history of Transylvania University has been
given in our volume iv, note 126.--ED.

[32] There are two good family taverns however, one the Indian Queen; of
the other I forget the sign.--WELBY.

[33] For a brief note on Frankfort, see F. A. Michaux's _Travels_,
volume iii of our series, note 39.

This was probably Colonel Richard Taylor, father of General Zachary
Taylor. He was born in Virginia in 1744, and served throughout the
Revolutionary War. Removing to the Falls of the Ohio (1781), he was a
member of the conventions which formed the first and second
constitutions of Kentucky, and was often a member of its legislature. He
died in 1826.--ED.

[34] For information concerning the early history of Louisville, consult
Croghan's _Journals_, volume i of our series, note 106.--ED.

[35] For the information of future travellers, Allen's quiet part of the
hotel is down the street turning the corner of his house.--WELBY.

[36] A brief account of New Albany may be found in Hulme's _Journal_,
volume x of our series, note 15.--ED.

[37] Paoli, about forty miles northwest of New Albany, is the seat of
Orange County; it was laid out in 1816 by a territorial commission, and
the first frame building erected in that year. Hindostan has passed out
of existence; see Faux's _Journal_, volume xi of our series, note 68.
Washington proved to be the most advantageously located. See _ibid._,
note 69.--ED.

[38] Vincennes is not as old as Philadelphia, having been founded in
1727. Consult Croghan's _Journals_, volume i of our series, note

[39] Upon resigning his commission in the army (1814), General Harrison
settled upon a farm at North Bend, Ohio.--ED.

[39*] Mr. Birkbeck's letters from the Illinois.--WELBY.

[40] Hulme's _Journal_ has been reprinted in volume x of our

[41] The reader may suppose that corn might be grown at the English
Prairie as cheap as at Harmony; _why_ it cannot will clearly appear in
the account of this Colony.--WELBY.

[42] For the location of Bonpas Creek, see Flower's _Letters_, in our
volume x, note 2; Shawneetown, Croghan's _Journals_, in our volume i,
note 108.--ED.

[43] A relation of Mr. Flower's shot a bear during my stay.--WELBY.

[44] A brief account of the early settlement of Princeton may be found
in Hulme's _Journal_, volume x of our series, note 17.--ED.

[45] On returning to Philadelphia, and stating how I had disposed of the
baggage I was greeted with grins and smiles; one said he would not give
fifty dollars for my chance, another offered ten, and in short I found
that no _smart fellow_ thought of trusting another in America; and that
he who should think himself safe under the pledge of honour or honesty
was considered a fiat and deserving to be taken in! At Vincennes I had
yet to learn this at the expense of at least a thousand dollars.--WELBY.

[46] This depreciation will appear nothing when compared with the
following. Towards the close of the struggle for independence a Mr.
S***** travelled westward in order to collect some out-standing debts;
after receiving which in notes and on his road home, he actually paid
within sixteen miles of Philadelphia, three hundred dollars for a
breakfast, and even this bargain he would not have been able to make, he
found on his return, to that city!--The government have never been able
to enter into any arrangements to redeem these notes.--WELBY.

[47] I added to the diet, strong gruel of Indian corn meal, or wheat
flour, which enabled them to travel.--WELBY.

[48] A short sketch of Major Spriggs will be found in Faux's _Journal_,
_ante_, note 113.--ED.

[49] It was in the beginning of November when I crossed the Ohio near
Louisville; at that time a fine new steam vessel, of I believe two
hundred and fifty tons burthen, was waiting the rise of the water. What
a daily loss this detainer must have been to the proprietors! Many
people were staying at Louisville in order to go passengers by her to
New Orleans, a journey of between fifteen hundred and two thousand
miles, which was to be performed in six days independent of wind: to get
back it would require three or four weeks. This vessel was to convey the
western mail to New Orleans--the accommodations in every respect were
excellent and the whole interior was fitted up in the most complete
manner; the price to New Orleans for each passenger was, I understood,
forty dollars.--WELBY.

_Comment by Ed._ The first steamboat mail to New Orleans was carried in
this year by Captain Shreve upon his boat, named in honor of the
occasion, "Post-Boy."

[50] Plans for a canal around the Falls of the Ohio (Louisville), were
projected early in the nineteenth century. The Ohio Canal Company was
incorporated in 1809-10, Congress and the Kentucky legislature
conditionally subscribing for shares of its stock, but nothing was
accomplished. About ten years later the Jeffersonville Ohio Canal
Company was organized to build the canal around the Indiana side of the
falls. Construction was begun, but again the project fell through.
Finally the Louisville-Portland canal was commenced in 1825 and
completed in 1830, Congress having assisted to the extent of 2,335
shares of stock. This canal soon proved inadequate, and in 1872 it was
surrendered to the national government. An enlargement was immediately
undertaken, being completed in 1881.--ED.

[51] Another intention by raising the waters of the Schuylkill is, I
understood, to supply Philadelphia with its water.--WELBY.

[52] This year fine new cyder was plentiful in Ohio State, at a dollar a
barrel of thirty gallons.--WELBY.

[53] For the early history of Washington and Brownsville, see our volume
iii; F. A. Michaux's _Travels_, note 23; Harris's _Journal_, note

[54] A short sketch of Uniontown and Fort Cumberland may be found in
Harris's _Journal_, volume iii of our series, notes 47, 49.--ED.

[55] For a brief account of Fredericktown, see A. Michaux's _Travels_,
in our volume iii, note 70.--ED.

[56] The British forces under Major-General Ross landed at North Point,
at the mouth of the Patapsco, twelve miles from the city. Proceeding
along the North Point Road to Baltimore (September 12, 1814), they had
marched about four miles when their advance was checked by the American
forces under General Stricker. A sharp engagement followed, in which
Ross was killed, but the American troops were forced to fall back
towards Baltimore.

The battle monument, situated on Monument Square, was begun in 1815 and
completed ten years later. It is not a national memorial, but was
erected by the citizens of Baltimore. In 1839 Baltimore dedicated a
second monument on the North Point battle-ground.--ED.

[57] Some farmers, on this account, feed their cattle with corn, and
thus putting it upon legs send them to the Eastern markets; we met many
large droves of these cattle.--WELBY.

[58] In the Middle and Southern states the ruffed grouse (_Bonasa
umbella_) is called a pheasant. The English pheasant (_Phasianus
colchicus_) does not exist in the United States. Similarly, the American
partridge is entirely different from the English, being the bob white or
quail (_Ortyx virginiana_).--ED.

[59] George Louis Buffon (1707-1788) was a noted French naturalist, and
for many years was intendant to the royal gardens. Abbé Raynal
(1713-1793) published (1770) _Histoire philosophique et politique des
établissements et du commerce des Européens dans les deux Indes_.--ED.

[60] I believe the Quakers are entitled to the chief merit of promoting
these charitable institutions, and I have before been silent where I
should have given them the meed of praise.--WELBY.

[61] The Philadelphia _Aurora_ was established in 1790 by Benjamin
Franklin Bache. After his death (1798) it was edited by William Duane.
It was strongly anti-federal, and exerted its greatest influence between
the years 1800-1820.--ED.

[62] Reflections upon the Nature and tendency of the present Spirit of
the Times. By Rev. George Burges, B.A. 1820.--WELBY.

[63] The execution of the above sentence took place accordingly.--WELBY.

[64] This was Admiral Decatur. See Faux's _Journal_, _ante_, note

[65] The University of Pennsylvania dates its history from the
establishment of Franklin's academy in 1740. See Montgomery, _History of
the University of Pennsylvania from its Foundation to A.D. 1770_
(Philadelphia, 1902).--ED.

[66] Not long ago signs were very generally used by other trades than
those of Publicans, and even now there are a few who hang them
out,--Tavern signs are many of them executed in a superior manner; it is
the chief encouragement given to the Arts.--WELBY.

[67] Thomas Holcroft (1744-1809) a well-known British dramatist and

[68] Their other national air "Hail Columbia," is intitled to more

[69] I am informed that it is not an uncommon practice to sell the
negroes at auction, by the lb. weight.--WELBY.

[70] The skins of the goats by some speedy process had been converted
into morocco leather and were exhibited.--WELBY.

[71] The Library is lately renewed; the former one was burnt by us in
the late war, for which deed we have obtained perhaps justly the
appellation of "Modern Goths."--WELBY.

[72] Mr. Sheed of the United States Navy.--WELBY.


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