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Title: Over the Border: Acadia, the Home of "Evangeline"
Author: Chase, Eliza B. (Eliza Brown)
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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Canadian Institute for Historical Microreproductions.



OVER THE BORDER

ACADIA

THE HOME OF "EVANGELINE"

BY Eliza Chase



"Here lies the East...does not the day break here?"


JULIUS CAESAR, II



CONTENTS.


THE BAY OF FUNDY

THE BASIN OF MINAS

PORT ROYAL

ANNAPOLIS

DIGBY

HALIFAX

GRAND PRÉ

CLARE

L'ISLE DES MONTS DESERTS



CHRONOLOGY.


DATE


1604. De Monts' first landing on Eastern coast. (May 16)

1604. De Monts and suite arrive at Port Royal. (about June 1)

1606. De Monts returns from France with supplies for his colony.

1606. Port Royal abandoned.

1610. Return of De Poutrincourt.

1612. Jesuit priests sent oat from France. (Founding of St. Sauveur
      colony at Mt Desert)

1613. Destruction of Port Royal by Argall. (after breaking up settlement
      at Mt. Desert)

1628. Scotch colony broken up at Port Royal.

1634. Port Royal held by French under De Razilly.

1647. Feud between La Tour and D'Aulnay.

1654. Port Royal under Le Borgne yields to English.

1684. Incursions of pirates.

1690. Sir Wm. Phipps captures and pillages Port Royal.

1691. Port Royal held by French under De Villebon.

1707. Unsuccessfully besieged.

1710. Bombarded by seven English ships; the fort yields, name changed to
      Annapolis Royal.

1713. Treaty of Utrecht, ceding Acadia to the English.

1727,1728. Oath of allegiance exempting French Acadians from taking arms
           against France.

1744. Port Royal bombarded and besieged three months.

1745. De Ramezay's unsuccessful attack.

1755. Forts Beau-Séjour and Gaspereau taken by Moncton.

1755. Dispersion of the "Neutrals".

1763. Return of exiles, and founding of coast settlements. Treaty
      between France and England

1781. Annapolis Royal surprised and taken by two war ships.

1850. Last occupation (by military force) of old fort at Annapolis.



INTRODUCTION


In the rooms of the Historical Society, in Boston, hangs a portrait of
a distinguished looking person in quaint but handsome costume of antique
style. The gold embroidered coat, long vest with large and numerous
buttons, elegant cocked hat under the arm, voluminous white scarf and
powdered peruke, combine to form picturesque attire which is most
becoming to the gentleman therein depicted, and attract attention to
the genial countenance, causing the visitor to wonder who this can be,
so elaborately presented to the gaze.

A physiognomist would not decide upon such representation as a
"counterfeit presentment" of the tyrannical leader of the expedition
which enforced the cruel edict of exile,--

  "In the Acadian land, on the shores of the Basin of Minas; where
  Distant, secluded, still, the little village of Grand Pré
  Lay in the fruitful valley."

Yet this is Lieutenant-Colonel John Winslow, great-grandson of one of
the founders of the Plymouth Settlement. Could _he_ forget that his
ancestors fled from persecution, and came to this country to find
peaceful homes?

It was not his place to make reply, or reason why when receiving orders,
however; and it seems that the task imposed was a distasteful one; as,
at the time of the banishment, he earnestly expressed the desire "to be
rid of the worst piece of service" he "ever was in."

He said also of the unhappy people at that time, "It hurts me to hear
their weeping and wailing." So we conclude that the pleasant face did
not belie the heart which it mirrored.

It is a singular coincidence that, for being hostile to their country
at the time of the Revolution, his own family were driven into exile
twenty years after the deportation of the unhappy French people.

Have not even the most prosaic among us some love of poesy, though
unacknowledged? And who, in romantic youth or sober age, has not been
touched by the tragic story of the dispersion of the people who

  "dwelt together in love, those simple Acadian farmers,--
  Dwelt in the love of God and of man. Alike were they free from
  Fear, that reigns with the tyrant, and envy, the vice of republics.
  Neither locks had they to their doors, nor bars to their windows,
  But their dwellings were open as day and the hearts of their owners;
  There the richest was poor, and the poorest lived in abundance."

Of the name Acadia, Principal Dawson says in "Canadian Antiquities--,
that "it signifies primarily a place or region, and, in combination
with other words, a place of plenty or abundance; ..." a name most
applicable to a region which is richer in the 'chief things of the
ancient mountains, the precious things of the lasting hills, and the
precious things of the earth and of the deep that coucheth beneath',
than any other portion of America of similar dimensions."

We naturally infer that the name is French; but our researches prove
that it was originally the Indian _Aquoddie_, a pollock,--not a poetic
or romantic significance. This was corrupted by the French into
_Accadie, L'Acadie, Cadie_.

So little originality in nomenclature is shown in America, that we
could desire that Indian names should be retained; that is, when not too
long, or harsh in sound; yet in _this_ case we are inclined to rejoice
at the change from the aboriginal to the more musical modern title.

Though a vast extent of territory was once embraced under that name, it
is now merely a rather fanciful title for a small part of the Province
of Nova Scotia.

Acadia! The Bay of Fundy! There's magic even in the names; the very
sound of them calling up visions of romance, and causing anticipations
of amazing displays of Nature's wonders. Fundy! The marvel of our
childhood, filling the mind's eye in those early school days with that
astounding picture,--a glittering wall of green crystal, anywhere from
ten to one hundred feet in height, advancing on the land like the march
of a mighty phalanx, as if to overwhelm and carry all before it! Had it
not been our dream for years to go there, and prove to our everlasting
satisfaction whether childish credulity had been imposed upon?

Our proposed tourists, eight in number, being a company with a leaning
towards music, bound to be harmonious, desiring to study the Diet-tome
as illustrated by the effects of country fare and air, consolidate under
the title of the Octave. The chaperone, who we all know is a dear, is
naturally called "Do"(e); one, being under age, is dubbed the Minor
Third; while the exclamatory, irrepressible, and inexhaustible members
from the Hub are known as "La" and "Si."

Having decided upon our objective point, the next thing is to find out
how to reach it; and here, at the outset, we are surprised at the
comparative ignorance shown regarding a region which, though seemingly
distant, is in reality so accessible. We are soon inclined to quote
from an old song,--

  "Thou art so near and yet so far,"

as our blundering investigations seem more likely to prove how not to
get anywhere!

But we set to work to accumulate railroad literature in the shape of
maps, schedules, excursion books; and these friendly little pamphlets
prove delightful pathfinders, convincing us how readily all tastes can
be suited; as some wish to go by water, some by land, and some by "a
little of both." Thus, those who are on good terms with old Neptune may
take a pleasant voyage of twenty-six hours direct from Boston to the
distant village of Annapolis, Nova Scotia, which is our prospective
abiding place; while those who prefer can have "all rail route," or, if
more variety is desired, may go by land to St. John, New Brunswick, and
thence by steamboat across the Bay of Fundy. At last the company departs
on its several ways, and in sections, that the dwellers in that remote
old town of historic interest may not be struck breathless by such an
invasion of foreigners.

The prime mover of the expedition, having already traveled as far east
as Bangor, commences the journey at night from that city. Strange to
say, no jar or unusual sensation is experienced when the iron horse
passes the boundary; nor is anything novel seen when the train known as
the "Flying Yankee" halts for a brief breathing spell at MacAdam
Station. A drowsy voice volunteers the information: "It is a forsaken
region here." Another of our travelers replies, "Appearances certainly
indicate that the Colossus of _Roads_ is absent, and it is to be hoped
that he is mending his ways elsewhere." Then the speakers, tipping their
reclining chairs to a more recumbent posture, drift off to the Land of
Nod.

With morning comes examination of travelers' possessions at the custom
house, with amusing exhibitions of peculiarly packed boxes and bags,
recalling funny episodes of foreign tours, while giving to this one a
novel character; then the train speeds on for seven hours more.



THE BAY OF FUNDY.


Ere long singular evidence of proximity to the wonderful tides of the
Bay of Fundy is seen, as all the streams show sloping banks,
stupendously muddy; mud reddish brown in color, smooth and oily looking,
gashed with seams, and with a lazily moving rivulet in the bed of the
stream from whence the retreating tide has sucked away the volume of
water.

"What a Paradise for bare-footed boys, and children with a predilection
for mud pies!" exclaims one of the tourists; while the other--the
practical, prosaic--remarks, "It looks like the chocolate frosting of
your cakes!" for which speech a shriveling look is received.

This great arm of the sea, reaching up so far into the land, and which
tried to convert Nova Scotia into an island (as man proposes to make
it, by channeling the isthmus), was known to early explorers as La Baie
Françoise, its present cognomen being a corruption of the French,
_Fond-de-la Baie_.

Being long, narrow, and running into the land like a tunnel, the tide
rises higher and higher as it ascends into the upper and narrowest
parts; thus in the eastern arm, the Basin of Minas, the tidal swell
rises forty feet, sometimes fifty or more in spring.

In Chignecto Bay, which extends in a more northerly direction from the
greater bay, the rise has been known to reach seventy feet in spring,
though it is usually between fifty and sixty at other times. Here, in
the estuary of the Petitcodiac, where the river meets the wave of the
tide, the volumes contending cause the Great Bore, as it is called; and
as in this region the swine wade out into the mud in search of shell
fish, they are sometimes swept away and drowned. The Amazon River also
has its Bore; the Indians, trying to imitate the sound of the roaring
water, call it "pororoca."

In the Hoogly it is shown; and in a river of China, the Teintang, it
advances up the stream at the rate of twenty-five miles an hour, causing
a rise of thirty feet. In some northern countries the Bore is called
the Eagre. Octavia says this must be because it screws its way so
_eagerly_ into the land, but is immediately suppressed, and informed
that the name is a corruption of Oegir, the Scandinavian god of the sea,
of whom we learn as follows:--

Odin, the father of the gods, creator of the world, possessing greatest
power and wisdom, holds the position in Scandinavian mythology that Zeus
does in the Greek. Like the Olympian Jupiter, he held the thunder bolts
in his hand; but differed from the more inert divinity of Greece in
that, arrayed in robes of cloud, he rode through the universe on his
marvelous steed, which had eight feet. This idea was characteristic of a
hardy race living a wild outdoor life in a rigorous climate. Oegir, the
god of the sea, was a jotun, but friendly to Odin. The jotuns were
giants, and generally exerted their powers to the injury of man, but,
not being gifted with full intelligence, could be conquered by men. The
first jotun, named Ymer, Odin subdued, and of his flesh formed the
earth, of his bones the mountains; the ocean was his blood, his brains
the clouds, while from his skull the arch of the heavens was made.

We resolved to witness the singular spectacle of the Oegir of Fundy;
but, not receiving answer to our application for accommodations at
Moncton, proceeded on our way, consoling ourselves with the thought that
we could see a bore any day, without taking any special pains or going
much out of our way.

The Basin of Minas! What a "flood of thoughts" rise at the name. Fancy
paints dreamy and fascinating pictures of the fruitful and verdant
meadow land, the hills, the woods, the simple hearted, childlike
peasants; upright, faithful, devout, leading blameless lives of placid
serenity:

  "At peace with God and the world."

It seemed that there must be some means of crossing the beauteous Basin
whence the broken hearted exiles sailed away so sadly; and that any
tourist with a particle of romance or sentiment in his composition would
gladly make even a wide detour to visit it. Therefore we were surprised
to learn that railroad schedules said nothing of this route, and that
it seemed almost unknown to summer pleasure seekers. Not to be deterred,
however, what better can one do than write direct for information to
Parrsboro,--a pretty village, which is the nearest point to the Basin.
Thus we learn that a short railway, connecting with the Intercolonial,
will convey us thither, though not a road intended for passenger
service.

"It will only add to the novelty and interest of our tour," we say. We
rather hope it will prove a very peculiar road, and are prepared for
discomfort which we do not find; although, at Spring Hill, the point of
divergence from the main line, such a queer train is waiting, that one
exclaims, "Surely we have come into the backwoods at last!"

The car is divided in the middle, the forward part devoted to baggage,
while in the rear portion, on extremely low backed and cushion less
seats, beside tiny, shade less windows, sit the passengers. And such
passengers! We mentally ejaculate something about "Cruikshank's
caricatures come to life." With much preliminary clanking of chains, a
most dolorous groaning and creaking of the strange vehicle, a shudder
and jar, the train is in motion, and slowly proceeding through densely
wooded and wild country,--a coal and lumber district, where only an
occasional log house relieves the monotony of the scene,--log huts which
look as if they have strayed away from the far South and dropped down in
this wilderness. At intervals, with a convulsive jerk which brings to
their feet some new travelers on this peculiar line, the train halts to
take on lumber; and one of our tourists remarks, "This old thing starts
like an earthquake, and stops as if colliding with a stone wall;" and
continues: "Do you think the poet who longed for 'a lodge in some vast
wilderness', would have been satisfied with this?" Without waiting for
a reply, the next remark is: "We are looking for summer accommodations;
don't you think we could find board cheap here?" The prosaic one,
ignoring such an attempt at pleasantry, replies, "Five dollars per
thousand feet, I have been told."

When the conductor, in a huge straw hat and rough suit, sans collar or
cravat, comes to collect tickets, the satirical one asks, "Will he
punch them with his penknife, or clip them with a pair of old scissors?"

We have

  "Heard of the wonderful one-hoss shay,
  That was built in such a logical way
  It ran a hundred years to a day,"

and conclude that the S. H. & P. R. R. resembles it somewhat; and that,
although there is a "general flavor of mild decay" about it in some
respects, it will not be in danger of wearing out from high rate of
speed; but who cares about _time_ when on a holiday?

At last, in the distance, a range of blue hills becomes visible, with a
faint, far gleam of water; and, as the blue line abruptly descends to
the glistening streak below, we know in an instant what that promontory
must be, and ecstatically quote with one voice,--

  "Away to the northward Blomidon rose,"

regardless of geography, as that Cape happens, in this case, to be
south of us.

Having received information by mail that "hosses and carages" are to be
found at Parrsboro, and that the sailing of the steamer is "rooled by
the tide," eager looks are cast about on alighting at that charming
village, the natives of which, to our surprise, are not backwoodsmen or
rough countrymen. Mine host, genial and gentlemanly, becomes visible;
and we are soon bowling merrily along through the neat village, the
picturesque country beyond, and are set down at a refreshingly
old-timey inn directly on the shore of the Basin of Minas, which bursts
suddenly upon the view, amazing one by its extent and beauty. We exclaim
in surprise, "Why, it looked no larger than one's thumb nail on the
map!"



THE BASIN OF MINAS


A curving beach with rolling surf, a long and very high pier, showing
the great rise of the tide,--at this point sixty feet in the spring,--
and directly before one the peculiarly striking promontory of Blomidon,
with the red sandstone showing through the dark pines clothing his
sides, and at his feet a powerful "rip" tossing the water into chopped
seas; a current so strong that a six-knot breeze is necessary to carry
a vessel through the passage which here opens into the Bay of Fundy.

This is the place where schedules said nothing of a boat to convey the
tourist across the inland sea--of thirty miles' width--to the railroad
on its south shore,--the line which bears on its rolling stock the
ominous initials W. A. R, but passes through the most peaceful country
nevertheless. Yet our genial host's assurances that such a vessel will
come are not to be doubted; and, after a dainty repast, a group sits on
the pier, watching ghostly ships and smaller craft emerge from and
vanish into the mist. As the mists disperse and the moon comes out
clearly, it reveals the "Hiawatha" approaching,--a graceful propeller
of five hundred tons burden, and one hundred and some odd feet in
length.

Partridge Island, which is close at hand, commands exceptionally fine
views, as Blomidon does also; the famous Capes d'Or and Chignecto, seven
hundred and thirty to eight hundred feet high, with Advocate Harbor,
are within pleasant driving distance. There are twenty varieties of
minerals on Blomidon; as many more, with jaw-testing names, on Partridge
Island "and thereabout"; so in this locality a geologist would become
quite ecstatic. Some of the finest marine scenery of the Provinces, as
well as lovely inland views and the noted and singular Five Islands, can
be seen within a radius of twenty miles.

"No country is of much interest until legends and poetry have draped it
in hues that mere nature cannot produce," says a pleasant modern
writer.

Geologists believe that the range of hills known as the North Mountain
was once a long narrow island, and that a shoal gradually formed near
Blomidon, in time filling in until that headland became part of the
mainland.

This striking cape, five hundred and seventy feet high, one would
naturally expect to find associated with strange wild myths of the
aborigines; and

  "Ye who love a nation's legends,
  That like voices from afar off
  Call to us to pause and listen,"

attend then!

It seems that this was the favorite resort of Glooscap, the Indian
giant, who, like "Kwasind the Strong Man," in "Hiawatha," entered into
a fierce combat here with the Great Beaver (Ahmeek, King of the Beavers,
is spoken of in that same poem), and contended with the gigantic
creature in similar manner, throwing huge masses of rock, which, falling
in the water, became, in this case, the Five Islands. The Indian legend
says that at this point a stupendous dam was built by the Great Beaver;
and because this was flooding the Cornwallis valley, Glooscap, whose
supernatural power was unlimited, broke and bent it into its present
shape, forming Cape Blomidon, afterwards strewing the promontory with
gems, some of which he carried away to adorn "his mysterious female
companion." Here also he held a wonderful feast with another giant; and,
ordinary fish not sufficing to satisfy their enormous appetites, the two
embarked in a stone canoe, sailed out into the Great Lake of Uniras, as
they called the Basin, and there speared a whale, which they brought
to the shore and devoured at short notice. The approach of the white man
causing the Indian giant to desert his old haunts, he sailed out on the
great water and vanished from sight; but some day, when men and animals
live together in peace and friendship, he will return and resume his
royal sway on the Basin of Minas. Before his departure he gave a
farewell feast to all the animals, who swarmed from all over the
country, turned his dogs into stone, and left his kettle overturned in
the shape of an island near Cape Spencer, across Minas Channel. Since
that time the loons, who were his hunters, wander sadly about the
wildest lakes and rivers, searching for their master, uttering their
dolorous cries; and the owls keep up their part of the lament, crying
"Koo koo skoos," which, being Indian language, they evidently learned
from the giant, and, being interpreted, signified "I am sorry."

The crown of France is adorned with a fine amethyst from Blomidon; and
those early explorers, De Monts and Co., "found in the neighborhood" (of
Parrsboro) "crystals and blue stones of a shining colour, similar in
appearance to those known by the name of Turkeese." One of the company,
"having found a beautiful specimen of this kind, broke it into two
pieces, and gave one to De Monts, and the other to Poutrincourt, who,
on their return to Paris, had them handsomely set by a jeweler, and
presented them to the King and Queen."

At the base of Cape d'Or there is a very powerful current with great
maelstroms; this is known as the Styx, and through these terrible
whirlpools two fishermen were carried this season (1883), one losing his
life; while the other, an expert swimmer and athlete, was saved by less
than a hair's breadth, and afterwards described most thrillingly his
sensations on being drawn into and ejected from the frightful vortices.

Just at daybreak, when Blomidon looks out all glowing from the gauzy
veil of mist, as the lazy zephyr wafts it aside, and the placid water
repeats the glorious tints of radiant clouds, we regretfully take our
departure. Cape Sharp and Cape Split, bold promontories which stand like
mighty sentinels guarding the entrance to the Bay of Fundy, appear in
clearest azure and violet; while the mountains of the north shore are
sharply defined in pure indigo against the brilliant sky, as the
propeller steams away. The sail across, two hours and a half in length,
is a vision of ideal and poetic beauty, all too brief; and as we step
ashore we feel tempted to quote, "Take, oh boatman, thrice thy fee!"

At this point (Hantsport) we take the W. and A. R. R, and in a few hours
are set down at the place which we have been so long planning to reach;
the place of which our host, who is probably not familiar with the
history of St. Augustine, Florida, wrote proudly as "the oldest town in
North America."

It certainly is one of the oldest settlements in North America, having
been founded in 1604, and, until 1750, it was the capital of the whole
peninsula of Nova Scotia: Annapolis,--the old Port Royal, the historical
town which has been the scene of so many struggles and bitter
contentions; but is now the very picture of peace and utterly restful
quiet.

Here the Eight settle down for a long sojourn; basking in the delicious
atmosphere, devoting themselves to searching out the most picturesque
views, in a series of rambles, drives, and excursions, and visiting all
points for miles around, to which history and romance have added charms
almost as great as those of river and mountain which they always
possessed.

Those of our party who hail from the city of Brotherly Love naturally
feel a special interest in Acadia and the sad story of Longfellow's
heroine; as a patent for the principality of Acadia, which included the
whole American coast from Philadelphia to Montreal, was given by the
"impulsive and warmhearted monarch," Henry IV. of France, to Pierre du
Guast, the Sieur de Monts, constituting him governor of that country,
and giving him the trade and revenues of the region.

Consequently some of the ancestors of our Philadelphia friends were
Acadians, though not French peasantry. There also:--

  "In that delightful land which is washed by the Delaware's waters,
  Guarding in sylvan shades the name of Penn the apostle,
  Stands on the banks of its beautiful stream the city he founded.
  There all the air is balm, and the peach is the emblem of beauty,
  And the streets still re-echo the names of the trees of the forest,
  As if they fain would appease the Dryads whose haunts they molested
  There from the troubled sea had Evangeline landed, an exile,
  Finding among the children of Penn a home and a country."

In that sedate and sober city was--

  "the almshouse, home of the homeless.
  Then in the suburbs it stood, in the midst of meadows and woodlands,
  Now the city surrounds it, hut still, with its gateway and wicket
  Meek in the midst of splendor, its humble walls seem to echo
  Softly the words of the Lord,--'The poor ye have always with you'"

There the sad exile's weary search was at last rewarded; the long parted
lovers were reunited, though but for a moment on the verge of the grave;
and thus was ended--

  "the hope and the fear and the sorrow,
  All the aching of heart, the restless, unsatisfied longing,
  All the dull, deep pain, and constant anguish of patience,"

The city almshouse stood, we are told, at the corner of Twelfth and
Spruce Streets; but the belief is quite general (and we incline
decidedly to that) that our beloved poet intended by his description to
portray the quaint building formerly known as the Friends' Almshouse,
which stood in Walnut Place (opening off of Walnut Street below Fourth),
and which was torn down in 1872 or 1873 to give place to railroad and
lawyers' offices.

The entrance from the street, by "gateway and wicket", as the poem says,
led through a narrow passage way; and there faced one a small, low
roofed house, built of alternate red and black bricks (the latter
glazed), almost entirely covered by an aged ivy which clambered over the
roof. The straggling branches even nodded above the wide chimneys; at
both sides of the door stood comfortable settles, inviting to rest; and
the pretty garden charmed with its bloom and fragrance. The whole formed
such a restful retreat, such an oasis of quiet in the very heart of the
busy city, that one was tempted often to make excuses for straying into
the peaceful enclosure.

In a book printed for private circulation in Philadelphia some years
ago, there is an item of interest about the Acadians. The author
narrates that she and a young companion, in their strolls to the
suburbs, where they went to visit the Pennsylvania Hospital (Eighth and
Pine Streets, now in the heart of the city), were timid because obliged
to pass the place where the "French Neutrals" were located.

These people, because they were foreigners, and there was some mystery
about them which the girls did not then understand, inspired them with
fear; though Philadelphia residents of that time testify that the
homeless and destitute strangers were in reality a very simple and
inoffensive company, when, "friendless, homeless, hopeless, they
wandered from city to city." Through the influence of Anthony Benezet, a
member of the Society of Friends, they were provided with homes on Pine
Street above Sixth, where the two little wooden houses still stand; one,
when we last saw it, being painted blue.

What a picturesque company of adventurers were those French noblemen,
who, turning their backs upon the luxuries and fascinations of court
life, sailed away to this wild and distant land, where, in the pursuit
of gain, fame, or merely adventure, they were to suffer absolute
privation and hardship; consorting with savages in place of the plumed
and pampered denizens of palaces.

After a probably tempestuous voyage across the bleak Atlantic, and a
merciless buffeting from Fundy in the spring of 1604, the prospective
Governor of the great territory known as Acadia was sailing along this
coast, which presents such a forbidding aspect from the Bay, making his
first haven May 16. At that time, we can readily imagine, in this
northern region the weather would not be very balmy. Even now the wild
rocky shore stretches along drearily--though with certain stern
picturesqueness--as far as eye can reach, and then must have been even
less attractive, as it showed no sign of habitation.

Champlain was somewhat familiar with these shores from former voyages,
and so had been chosen as pilot; but De Poutrincourt and Pontgravé,
other associates of Pierre du Guast, the Sieur de Monts, doubtless
looked askance at each other, or indulged in the expressive French shrug
as the cheerless panorama parsed before them. On that 16th of May, at
the harbor where the little town of Liverpool is now situated, De Monts
found another Frenchman engaged in hunting and fishing, ignoring, or
regardless of, the rights of any one else; and without ado this
interloper (so considered by De Monts) was nabbed; the only consolation
he received being the honor of transmitting his name, Rossignol, to the
harbor,--a name since transferred to a lake in the vicinity.

After a sojourn of two weeks at another point (St. Mary's Bay), the
explorers proceeded northward; and at last a particularly inviting
harbor presented itself, causing the mental vision of the new Governor
and his company to assume more hopeful aspect, as they turned their
course thither and pronounced it "Port Royal"!



PORT ROYAL


Here they managed to exist through the winter with as much comfort as
circumstances would admit of; but with the return of summer were on the
wing again, in search of more salubrious climate and more southerly
locality for the establishment of a colony, sailing along the coast of
Maine and Massachusetts as far as Cape Cod.

Attempts were made to establish settlements, but the natives proved
unfriendly; the foreigners had not a sufficient force to subdue them;
and, as De Monts was obliged to return to France, De Poutrincourt and
his companions established themselves again at Port Royal. Here, to
while away the long winter, the gay adventurers established a burlesque
court, which they christened "L'Ordre de Bon Temps"; and of the merry
realm each of the fifteen principal persons of the colony became supreme
ruler in turn. As the Grand Master's sway lasted but a day, each one, as
he assumed that august position, prided himself on doing his utmost to
eclipse his predecessor in lavish provision for feasting. Forests were
scoured for game; fish were brought from the tempest-tossed waters of
the Bay, or speared through the ice of L'Équille; so the table fairly
groaned with the luxuries of these winter revelers in the wilds of
Acadia. With ludicrous caricature of court ceremonial, the rulers of
the feast marched to the table, where their invited guests, the Indian
chiefs, sat with them around the board; the squaws and children
squatting on the floor, watching for bits which the lively company now
and then tossed to them. "They say" that an aged sachem, when dying,
asked if he should have pies in heaven as good as those which he had
eaten at Poutrincourt's table!

To the Indians, the greatest delicacy of all on the table was bread.
This, to them a dainty viand, they were always ready to consume with
gusto; but were invariably averse to grinding the corn, although
promised half of the meal as recompense for their labor. The grinding
was performed with a hand-mill, and consequently so laborious and
tedious that the savages would rather suffer hunger than submit to such
drudgery, which they also seemed to think degrading to the free sons of
the forest.

Proverbially fickle are princes; and of this De Monts was convinced on
his return to France, for during his absence he had lost favor with his
sovereign, Henry IV., who revoked his commission; still he succeeded,
after many difficulties, in procuring supplies for his colony, and
arrived just in time to prevent his people from leaving Port Royal
discouraged and disheartened. One member of the little community of
Frenchmen was Lescarbot, a lawyer, who was talented, poetical, and did
much to enliven the others during the absence of their leader, who, on
his return, was received by a procession of masqueraders, headed by
Neptune and tritons, reciting verses written by Lescarbot. Over the
entrances to the fort and to the Governor's apartments were suspended
wreaths of laurel and garlands surrounding Latin mottoes,--all the work
of the pastimist (if one may coin such a word). The relief and
encouragement brought by De Monts were but temporary, and in the spring
(1606) news was received that nothing more could be sent to the
colonists, and they must be disbanded.

Imagination portrays the strange picture presented at this time in this
remote region, the gay French courtiers vanishing from the sight of
their Indian comrades almost as suddenly and mysteriously as they had
appeared but three years before, and leaving their dusky boon companions
lamenting on the shore. The eyes of the savages--that race who pride
themselves on their stoicism--were actually dimmed with tears as they
watched the vessel fading away in the distance.

For four years "ye gentle sauvage" pursued the even tenor of his way,
and consoled himself as best he could for the absence of the lively
revelers who had cheered his solitude; then, presumably to his delight
(in 1610), he saw Poutrincourt returning. That nobleman had promised the
king to exert himself for the conversion of the Indians. Three years
later a company of Jesuits sailed for this port with the same object in
view; but, losing their reckoning, they founded settlements at Mt.
Desert instead.

Madame de Guercheville, a true woman indeed, who was honored and
respected in a dissolute court where honor was almost unknown, had
become a zealous advocate of the conversion of Indians in America; and
through her means and influence several priests of the Jesuit order were
sent out in 1612 to this settlement. The sachems, with members of their
tribes living at Port Royal, were baptized, twenty-one at one time, with
much show of rejoicing typified by firing of cannon, waving of banners,
blaring of trumpets. Some doubt is expressed whether the savages fully
understood what it was all about, and what their confession of faith
fully signified; as one chief, on being instructed in the Lord's Prayer,
objected to asking for bread alone, saying that he wished for moose
flesh and fish also; and when one of the priests deliberately set to
work, with notebook and quill, to learn the language of the aborigines
by asking one man the Indian words for various French ones (to him
totally incomprehensible), the savage, with malice aforethought,
purposely gave him words of evil signification, which did not assist
the Frenchman in enlightening other members of this benighted race.
Perceiving the trick which had been played upon him by the savage, who
had been so perplexed by his questioning, the priest declared that
Indian possessed by the Devil! However, with all its discouragements,
this was the opening of the work of the Jesuits in America; in which
even those who might have thought their zeal at times mistaken could not
but respect them for the noble heroism, displayed during so many years,
in their work of civilizing and enlightening the savages. Even in these
olden times there were turbulent marauders abroad; and one such, Argall,
from Virginia, after destroying the settlement at Somes Sound (Mt.
Desert), pounced upon this peaceful station, destroying the fort and
scattering the colonists (1613).

The section known as Virginia was granted in 1606 to the London and
Plymouth Companies; and as that portion embraced the country between 34
degrees and 43 degrees north latitude, it seems that Argall pretended
that the French at Port Royal were interlopers, usurping his rights; but
as De Monts had received in 1604 a charter for the country deemed as
lying between 40 degrees and 46 degrees north latitude, Argall had no
right to dispossess De Monts or his successor.

Notwithstanding that a member of Argall's company speaks of him as "a
gentleman of noble courage", that does not prevent us from considering
him a rascal; for at this time France and England were at peace, and he
was unauthorized in his base and tyrannous invasion of Port Royal.
Before his attack on this quiet, peaceful station, he had shown greatest
treachery at Somes Sound, Mt. Desert, where he stole Saussaye's
commission and cast adrift in an open boat fifteen of the colonists.

Poutrincourt's son, Biencourt, was now Governor of Acadia, and stationed
at Port Royal. He endeavored to make terms with Argall, and offered to
divide with him the proceeds of the fur trade and the mines; but this
was refused, and the settlement broken up, some of the unfortunate
Frenchmen joining Champlain at Quebec, some scattering into the woods
among the Indians, while others were carried to England and from thence
demanded by the French ambassador. Thus, after only a little more than
eight years from the time of settlement, the colony was entirely broken
up.

En passant: A friend of ours, who with his family passed a summer in New
Hampshire, "at the roots of the White Mountains", as someone expressed
it, surprised an old farmer by asking the names of hills in sight from
that particular locality. The reply was, "I dono, and I dono as I care;
but you city folks, when you come here, are allers askin' questions." We
conclude that we are liable to be classed in a similar category; and, in
fact, the Dabbler when sketching one day is asked, "Ain't some of your
party writing a book?" The interrogator's mind is set at rest by being
answered that the reason we have become animated notes of interrogation
is because we are interested in the history of the old town; but it is
fearful to think for what that innocent lad is responsible: putting
notions in people's heads, and causing this volume to be inflicted on a
suffering world!

To return to our subject. The olive branch was not yet to be the emblem
of this spot, now so peaceful, for a colony of Scotch people were next
routed (1628), and the place left in ruins, when a season of quiet
ensued; but this was virtually the commencement of the French and
English wars in North America, continuing, with slight intermissions,
until the treaty of 1763, by which France gave up her possessions in
America.

In 1634 Port Royal fell into French hands again, when Claude de Razilly
was Governor, and here for a short time lived La Tour, one of his
lieutenants, who kept up such bitter feuds with D'Aulnay, who held like
position to his own, and whose story Whittier relates in his poem, "St.
John, 1647".

Madatae de la Tour must have been one of the earliest advocates of
women's rights, as she so bravely held the fort of St. John in her
husband's absence.

  "'But what of my lady?'
  Cried Charles of Estienne
  On the shot-crumbled turret
  Thy lady was seen
  Half veiled in the smoke cloud
  Her hand grasped thy pennon,
  While her dark tresses swayed
  In the hot breath of cannon,
  Of its sturdy defenders,
  Thy lady alone
  Saw the cross-blazoned banner
  Float over St John.
  Alas for thy lady!
  No service from thee
  Is needed by her
  Whom the Lord hath set free:
  Nine days, in stern silence,
  Her thralldom she bore,
  But the tenth morning came
  And Death opened her door'"

Hannay says she was "the first and greatest of Acadian heroines,--a
woman whose name is as proudly enshrined in the history of this land as
that of any sceptered queen in European story."

For a long series of years this post of Port Royal was the bone of
contention between the French and English; the fort, being held for a
time by one power, then by the other, representing the shuttle-cock when
these contending nations battled at her doors. In 1654 the place was
held by the French under Le Borgne. An attack by the English was
successful, though the French were well garrisoned and provisioned.

In De Razilly's time La Tour, who might have been satisfied with his
possessions at St. John, assailed it; then English pirates took the
fishing fleet (1684); next Sir William Phipps captured and pillaged the
fort in 1690. Shortly after this, pirates from the West Indies plundered
the place; and in 1691 it again fell into the hands of the French under
De Villebon. It was still to undergo two sieges in 1707, when, under
Subercase, the besiegers were repulsed; and in 1710 seven ships with
English marines bombarded the fort for several days. The garrison at
last, being in starving condition, were forced to yield; and the victors
christened the place Annapolis Royal, in honor of their sovereign then
reigning in Great Britain.

The subjugation of this part of "New France" made Nova Scotia an English
province; and for a time this realm might have answered to the
description of Rasselas's Happy Valley; the thrifty, honest people
relieved from "wars and rumors of wars", and taking up the quiet,
contented routine of every-day life.

  "Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife
  They kept the noiseless tenor of their way."

But in 1744 the reign of siege and terror began again, and the town was
destroyed by bombardment and incendiary fires, when, for nearly three
months, Laloutre and Duvivier besieged the fort. The garrison, augmented
by troops from Louisburg, and assisted by provisions and men from
Boston, finally repulsed their assailants. The next year there was
another assault under De Ramezay, which was unsuccessful; and after the
dispersion of the Acadians (1755), the much-fought-over place was
allowed to remain in quiet until 1781, when two American ships-of-war
sailed up the river at night. Their forces, taking the fort by surprise,
robbed the houses, after imprisoning the people in the old block-house.
Since that time the English have retained possession of this much
disputed territory; the fort has been unarmed and unoccupied (by
military force) since 1850, when the Rifle Brigade were stationed here;
but the tedium of garrison life proving still more irksome here, and
desertions being frequent, the fort was abandoned as a military post.



ANNAPOLIS


What a fascination there is about that old fort at Annapolis!--"the
hornet's nest", as it was called in the olden time; the stronghold
which withstood so many sieges, and was the subject of constant
contentions in by-gone years.

The hours slip by unnoted when one sits, on the ramparts dreaming and
gazing on the broad sweep of river, the distant islands, the undulating
lines of the mountain ranges. The sleepy looking cows wander lazily
about, cropping the grass on the embankments, and even clamber over the
ancient archway.

One peoples the place with imaginary martial figures, and is almost
startled when the stillness is broken by a rustle and approaching
footsteps, and turns, as if expecting to see glittering uniforms
appearing through the crumbling arch; but it is only old Moolly, who
deliberately walks into the inner enclosure, and, if "our special artist
on the spot" has left his sketch for a moment, probably puts her foot in
it, with the air of one who should say, "Who are you who dare invade my
realm?"

The quaint barrack building, with its huge chimneys and gambrel roof, is
now occupied by several families; and a whitewashed fence encloses a gay
garden. The small magazine, built of creamy sandstone sent from France
for the purpose, still remains, and its excessively sharp roof shows
above the ramparts; but the massive oaken door stands open wide and is
green with age; the roof is decidedly shaky; and the shingles hang
loosely, so that one would think that only a moderate gale would send
them flying like a pack of cards.

The block-house, built of massive logs and heavy planks of English oak,
stood within the past year by the bridge over the moat; but,
unfortunately, a person without reverence for antiquities has razed it,
thereby obtaining his winter fuel cheaply; and he now turns an honest
penny by selling canes, etc., of the wood.

When we indignantly ask some of the town's-people how they could have
permitted this, they reply, "Oh, it was getting rotten, and would have
tumbled down some day;" but we judge, by pieces which we see of the
sound, tough fibred oak, that it might have stood for fifty years more
without injury; while a little judicious propping and repairing,
perhaps, would have preserved it for a longer period than that. Poor
Annapolitans, who had no Centennial Exhibition to teach them the value
of historical relics and "old things".

On the Maine Central Railroad, quite near the track at Winslow, we
passed, on our way here, an old block-house, which is carefully
preserved.

Not long ago, the Canadian Government received orders that all
buildings, except the barrack and magazine, must be removed from the
fort enclosure; yet a garrulous old Scotchman still resides there in a
tiny house, and plies his trade as cobbler.

His delight is to regale strangers with preposterous "yarns", and
accounts of his adventures in her Majesty's service; accounts which must
be taken with considerably more than the proverbial grain of salt, but
to which we listened with delight and amazingly sober countenances. When
asked how it happens that he still remains in the fort grounds, he
answers, "I writ out home, to Angland, to say that I served in the
arrumy fur thurty yeer, and I know the ould gurrul will let me stay."
(There's respect for a sovereign!)

He talks wisely of the "bumpruf", a word which we have some difficulty
in translating into _bomb proof_; and we are, apparently, overpowered
with wonder as he explains how "with a few berrls av pouther they cud
send ivery thing flying, and desthroy the whole place, avery bit av
it."

Presumably misled by our simulated credulity, he goes on to describe a
well in front of the magazine, and says, "When they wanted to get red
av throoblesome preesoners, ploomp they'd go in the watter, and thet was
the last av 'em'" Suffice it to say, that the oldest inhabitant has no
recollection of the slightest trace of such a well.

The underground passage has fallen in; only the entrance being now
visible and accessible Old Gill says, "I as the last man iver in it; and
I got caught there with the wall fallin' in, and they were twinty fower
hours gettin' me out," (a li[e]kely story!) adding, "Oh, I was a divil
in them days!" and "I found in there a bit av a goon wrinch" (gun
wrench); and Mr. So and So, from Halifax, "gev me some money fur it,
an' he lapped it up in his han'kerchef like as if it had ben goold."

We are told of an ancient house "of the era of the French occupation,"
and go to see it; but learn, though it looks so aged, that it was built
upon the _site_ of the French house, and is not the old original. The
owner has reached the ripe age of ninety-four, and is a remarkable man,
with the polished manner of a gentleman of the old school In such a
climate as this, one would naturally expect to find centenarians. He
tells us many interesting things about old times here, and his grandson
brings out a barrel of Acadian relics to show us.

We are interested in noting the differences between these ancient
implements and those in use at the present time; here is a gridiron,
with very long handle and four feet (a clumsy quadruped), and we see in
fancy the picture of home comfort, as the busy housewife prepares the
noonday meal, where--

  "Firmly builded with rafters of oak, the house of the farmer
  Stood on the side of a lull commanding the sea, and a shady
  Sycamore grew by the door, with a woodbine wreathing around it"

Here, too, are ox chains, a curiously shaped ploughshare, an odd little
spade used in mending the dikes, and digging clay for bricks, and also
the long and heavy tongs of the "blacksmith".

  "Who was a mighty man in the village and honored of all men
  For since the birth of time, throughout all ages and nations
  Has the craft of the smith been held in repute by the people."

These implements were discovered at Frenchman's Brook on this farm, only
three years ago, and were then found apparently as bright and strong as
if just placed there. They were covered with brush, but a foot or two
below the surface; and seem to have been hurriedly hidden by the exiles,
who, finding them too weighty for conveyance, secreted them, probably
with the hope of returning sometime.

What a study for an artist the group would have made, as they stood
examining the misty iron, and talking of the unhappy people so
ruthlessly sent into banishment! For background, the quaint, unpainted
house, black with age, the roof of the "lean-to" so steeply sloping that
the eave-trough was on a line Avith the heads of the group Beyond lay
the lovely valley, with the winding Équille on its serpentine way to
join the greater river; the whole picture framed in the long range of
wooded and rugged hills.

Higginson thinks there has been too much sentimentalizing over the fate
of the Acadians; and one member of our party so evidently considers that
our enthusiasm savors of the gushing school-girl, that we are cautious
in our remarks. But the old man's grandson, holding his pretty child on
his shoulder, and looking across the valley to his pleasant dwelling,
says, "Oh, it was cruel to send them away from their homes!" to which
all earnestly assent.

Clambering up the hill back of the old house, we come upon the site of
an ancient French church, and commend the taste of those who chose such
an admirable location. Here we find, to our delight, that local
tradition has buried two fine old bells. Bells! What a charm there is
about them! One of the earliest recollections of our childhood is of a
bell, which, being harsh and dissonant, so worked upon our youthful
sensibilities as to cause paroxysms of tears; and now in these later
years we are sure that should some genie set us down blindfolded in any
place where we had ever remained for a time the mere tones of the bells
would enlighten us as to our whereabouts.

  "Those evening bells! Those evening bells!
  How many a tale their music tells,
  Of youth and home and that sweet time
  When last I heard their soothing chime."

After the Port Royal settlement was broken up by Argall in 1613,
tradition says this church crumbled away into ruin, and, as the
supporting beams decayed, the bells sank to the ground, where, from
their own weight and the accumulations of Nature's _débris_ they became
more and more deeply embedded until lost to view. Silver bells, from
France, they say. Of course! Who ever heard of any ancient bells which
were not largely composed of that metal? It is a pretty myth, however,
which we adopt with pleasure; though common sense plainly says that
silver would soon wear away in such use; that the noble patrons of a
struggling colony in a wild country would not have been so extravagant
as that; and that bell metal is a composition of copper and tin which
has been in use from the time of Henry III.

The people of Antwerp have special affection for the "Carolus" of their
famous cathedral; and that bell is actually composed of copper, silver,
and gold; but it is now so much worn that they are not allowed the
privilege of hearing it more than once or twice a year "Kings and nobles
have stood beside these famous caldrons" (of the bell founders), "and
looked with reverence on the making of these old bells; nay, they have
brought gold and silver, and pronouncing the holy name of some saint or
apostle which the bell was hereafter to bear, they have flung in
precious metals, rings, bracelets, and even bullion."

Possibly these old bells of Annapolis, the secret of whose hiding place
Nature guards so well, were made by Van den Gheyn or Hemony of Belgium,
who from 1620 to 1650 were such famous founders that those of their
works still extant are worth their weight in gold, or priceless, and
are noted the world over for their wonderful melody. If so, when they

  "Sprinkled with sounds the air, as the priest with his hyssop
  Sprinkles the congregation and scatters blessing among them,"

it was no doubt with silvery tone; and, as it is well known that bells
sound best when rung on a slope or in a valley where there is a lake or
river, doubtless this wide and lovely stream carried the music of the
mellow peal, and returning voyagers heard the welcome notes; as the
sailors of the North Sea, on entering the Scheldt, strain their ears to
catch the faint, far melody of the chimes of the belfry of Antwerp,
visible one hundred and fifty miles away.

Another day we make an expedition to see the Apostle Spoons, and are
received, as invariably everywhere, with cordial hospitality. These
spoons would, I fear, cause the eye of an antiquary to gleam covetously.
They have round, flat bowls about two and a half inches in diameter;
narrow, slender, and straight handles, terminating, the one with a
small turbaned head, the other with a full length figure about one inch
long; the entire length of the handles being about four and a half
inches.

In the bowl of one the letters P L I are rudely cut; and on both is
stamped something which, they say, under magnifying glass resembles a
King's head In the spring of 1874 or 1875 these were turned up by the
plough, in a field two miles beyond the town, the discovery being made
in the neighborhood of the supposed bite of an old French church. The
farmer's thrifty housewife was making soap at the time the spoons were
unearthed; and as they were much discolored, "the old lead things" were
tossed into the kettle of lye, from whence, to her amazement, they came
out gold, or, at least, silver washed with gold. These spoons, they say,
were used in the service of the church; but it is more likely that they
were the property of some family, and probable that they were dropped
by their owners--then living beyond the present site of Annapolis--when,
at the time of the banishment of the Acadians, they were hurried away to
the ships on the Basin of Minas.

An apostle spoon was often a treasured heirloom in families of the
better class, and at the advent of each scion of the family tree was
suspended about the neck of the infant at baptism, being supposed to
exert some beneficent influence. Especially in the East, about the
seventh century, we find that a small vessel, or spoon, sometimes of
gold, was used in the churches These were eucharistic utensils, by means
of which communicants conveyed the sacred elements to the mouth; but
this custom was forbidden and done away with, though probably the
tradition of such usage suggested the spoon, which became general in
Greek and most Oriental churches many years after. The supposition
is, that in those churches, after the wafer had been put into the wine
in the chalice, the spoon was used to dip out such portion as was to be
reserved for administering the last sacrament to the dying, or to those
who were too ill to attend the service in the church. In all churches
of the East, except the Armenian, the spoon is used in administering the
sacrament.

Curious customs also existed in ancient times in reference to baptism.
Honey mixed with milk or with wine was given to the one who had just
received this rite, to show that he who received it, being a, newly
born child spiritually, must not be fed with strong meat, but with milk.
This became a regular part of the ritual, and was closely adhered to.
The old customs of festivals of rejoicing, public thanksgivings, wearing
of garlands, singing of hymns, and giving presents, are well known and
familiarly associated with baptismal festivities. The presentation of
apostle spoons at christenings was a very ancient custom in England. A
wealthy sponsor or relative who could afford it, gave a complete set of
twelve, each with the figure of an apostle carved or chased on the end
of the handle; while sometimes a poor person presented only one, but on
that was the figure of the saint for whom the child was named. Sometimes
this rudely molded little figure represented the patron saint of the
sponsor or the donor. In 1666 the custom was on the decline.

An anecdote relating to this usage is told of Shakespeare. The latter
"stood godfather" to the child of a friend; and after the ceremonies of
the christening, as the poet seemed much absorbed and serious, the
father questioned him as to the cause of his melancholy. The sponsor
replied, that he was considering what would be the most suitable gift
for him to present to his god-child, and that he had finally decided.
"I'll give him," said he, "a dozen good latten spoons, and thou shalt
translate them." This was a play upon the word Latin. In the Middle Ages
a kind of bronze used for church and household utensils was known as
"latten"; and the same name was applied in Shakespeare's time to thin
iron plate coated with tin, of which domestic utensils and implements
were made.

In Johnson's "Bartholomew Fair" one of his characters says, "And all
this for the hope of a couple of apostle spoons, and a cup to eat caudle
in." In a work of Middleton, entitled "The Chaste Maid of Cheapside",
one of the characters inquires, "What has he given her?" to which
another replies, "A faire high standing cup, and two great 'postle
spoons, one of them gilt."

The hat, or flat covering on the head of the figure,--that which we call
a turban in one of these at Annapolis,--was a customary appendage and
usual in apostle spoons; the intention being thereby to protect the
features of the tiny heads from wear. Whatever the history of these at
Annapolis, there can be no doubt of their genuineness, and, in a perfect
state, they are extremely rare.

In our antiquarian researches we are naturally drawn to the old
cemetery, adjoining the fort grounds; but learn that the oldest graves
were marked by oaken slabs, which have all disappeared, as have also
many odd stone ones. But among those still standing one records that
some one "dyed 1729"; another states that the body below "is deposited
here until the last trump"; and one, which must be the veritable
original of the "affliction sore" rhyme, ends: "till death did seize
and God did please to ease me of my pain." Still another bears this
epitaph, _verbatim et literatim_--

  "Stay friend stay nor let thy hart prophane
  The humble Stone that tells you life is vain.
  Here lyes a youth in moulding ruin lost
  A blossom nipt by death's untimely frost
  O then prepare to meet with him above
  In realms of everlasting love."

The stone-cutter's hand must have been as weary when he blundered over
the word humble as the poet's brain evidently was when he reached the
line which limps so lamely to the conclusion. Near this recently stood
a stone,

  "With uncouth rhymes and shapeless sculpture decked,"

on which the representation of Father Time was carved in such peculiar
manner that from pose and expression the figure might have passed for a
lively youth rather than the dread reaper, and was irreverently known
to the village youths as "Sarah's young man", a title suggested by a
popular song of the day.

In a remote corner we find the tomb of "Gregoria Remonia Antonia", "a
native of Spain"; and afterwards learn her story,--an episode in the
life of the Iron Duke which does not do him honor. Did _la grande dame_,
the Duchess, ever know of the fair foreigner who supplanted her, the
dame o' high degree, in her husband's affection? Did the beautiful
Spanish maiden dream, when the brilliant English General wooed her,
that he was doing her and another woman the greatest wrong? Little did
the fascinating Spaniard think that the so-called "nobleman" would
compel her to marry another; and that other a rough, illiterate man, who
would bring her to this wild, strange, far-away country, and that here
she should be laid to rest "after life's fitful fever." Is it to be
wondered at that her fiery Southern spirit rebelled, that her wrongs
embittered her, and that her life here was unhappy?

To add to the romance, one who attended her in her last illness tells
us that when the garrison gave a ball, the slender little Spanish lady
loaned or gave "pretty fixins" to the young girls to wear, and appeared
herself in rich silks and plumes; that she gave to her attendant in that
illness a wonderful box "all done off with,--well--this here plated
stuff, you know"; and that when the end was drawing near, the faint,
weak voice, with its broken English (at best so difficult to
understand), tried to make "Char-loet-tah" comprehend where she must
look for something hidden away which she wished her nurse to have in
recognition of her services. But alas! the hoarded treasure was not
found until months after the poor soul was gone, and then fell into the
very hands which the sad alien had most desired should not touch it.

The old adage about a sailor's right to have "a sweetheart in every
port" is still cited in these days of boasted advancement in culture,
religion, morals; and it is the same old world to-day as that which
lauded and bowed down to him whom it called "his Grace" (despite what we
consider his graceless actions); the same world, alas! ignoring the open
and evident fact when he steps aside from the narrow path of honor and
rectitude; while, should she swerve in the least, pouring out
mercilessly its harshest taunts, or overwhelming her with pitiless
scorn. This, because woman should hold an exalted position, and "be
above suspicion"? Then why do not the so-called "lords of creation", as
they might and ought, set an example of noble uprightness to "the weaker
vessel", guiding, guarding, upholding her through "the shards and thorns
of existence"?

The Spanish girl, left an orphan by the wars in which the dashing and
gallant English officer figured so proudly, fell to the care of two
aunts, who, belonging to that indolent, pleasure loving race of sunny
Spain, perhaps left the poor girl too much to her own devices, and thus
she may have been more easily beguiled.

"Look here, upon this picture, and on _this_": first, the gay little
senorita, holding daintily in her tapering fingers a cigarette, which
she occasionally raises to her "ripe red lips", afterwards languidly
following with her lustrous black eyes the blue wreaths of smoke as
they float above her head and vanish in the air; next, the withered
crone, with silver hair, wrinkled skin, and no trace of her early
beauty, sitting in the chimney corner, and still smoking, though now it
is a clay pipe,--to the amazement and disgust of the villagers. Yet
we, believing in the only correct interpretation of _noblesse oblige_,
and that he only is truly noble who acts nobly, have only pity for the
poor soul who here laid down life's weary burden twenty-two years ago at
the age of seventy-two, and scorn for him who rests in an honored grave,
and is idealized among the world's heroes.

How amusing it is to hear the people speak of us invariably as
"Americans", as if we were from some far-away and foreign country, and
to hear them talk of England as "home"!

The hearty cordiality, natural manner, and pleasantly unworldly ways of
the people are most refreshing; in "a world of hollow shams", to find
persons who are so _genuine_ is delightful; and thus another charm is
added to give greater zest to our enjoyment.

One, half in jest, asks a Halifax gentleman how they would like to be
annexed to the United States, and is quite surprised at his ready and
earnest reply: "Annexed? Oh, yes, we'd be glad to be;... we wouldn't
come with empty hands; we have what you want,--fisheries, lumber,
minerals; we'd not come as paupers and mendicants.... It will come,
though it may not be in our day.... The United States would not wish to
purchase,--she has done enough of that: we would have to come of our
own free will; and we would, too!"

Then there is the elderly Scotch gentleman, who appropriately hails from
the place with the outlandish name of Musquodoboit. He tells us that
during the "airly pairt" of his residence in America he visited in the
States, and that he has seen "fower Preesidents" inaugurated.

Of his first attendance at such a ceremony he says: "An' whan I see thet
mon, in hes plain blek coat, coomin' out amang all o' thim people, an'
all the deegnetirries in their blek coats tu, an' not a uniforrum amoong
thim, I said, 'This is the coontry fur me,'--it suited my taste. An' how
deeferint it wud be in Yerrup, where there wud be tin thausind mooskits
aboot, to kep 'im from bein' shot."

On our way here we were told: "Oh, you'll find Annapolis hot!" It might
perhaps seem so to a Newfoundlander; but to us the climate is a daily
source of remark, of wonder and delight. It is balmy, yet bracing; and
though there may be times when at midday it is decidedly warm,--as
summer should be,--the nights are always cool, and we live in flannel
costumes and luxuriate.

Warner speaks of "these northeastern lands which the Gulf Stream pets
and tempers"; yet he passed through this dear old town without stopping,
remarking only that he could not be content for a week here, and felt no
interest in the place apart from its historic associations. Let him stop
next time and investigate. We flatter ourselves that we could enlighten
him somewhat.

Our friends at various shore and mountain resorts report constant fogs;
yet we can testify that in nearly seven weeks' residence here there were
but two mornings which were foggy, and on those days the gray screen was
rolled away at noon.

  "aloft on the mountains
  Sea-fogs pitched their tents, and mists from the mighty Atlantic
  Looked on the happy valley, but ne'er from their station descended"

That singular feature spoken of in Longfellow's poem is shown here: the
mists rise from the Bay and rest lovingly, caressingly, on the crests of
the long range of mountains, giving them the appearance of comfortable
warmth under this downy coverlet on cool nights; but this fleece very
rarely descends to the valley.

Dr. O. W. Holmes must have had such a place as this in mind when he
said:--

  "And silence like a poultice came
  To heal the blows of sound,"

and surely tympanums most bruised by the world's clangor and jar could
not fail here be soothed and healed; and the writer of "Oh, where shall
rest be found?" would have received answer to his query here also. The
quiet is astonishing: there are no farm sounds even; and, though the
hours pass so pleasantly that we "take no note of time", we can tell
when Saturday comes, for then numbers of log-laden ox-carts plod slowly
into the village from the back country.

The bells on the animals' necks tinkle precisely like the sound of ice
when carried in a pitcher of water; and consequently do not jar upon
one's ear in this quietude as the clanking herd-bells which we hear in
some farming regions of the States.

At night the only break in the profound stillness is when the tide is
ebbing, and the Equille can be heard rushing under the bridge a quarter
of a mile away. We cannot discover the meaning of that word, and so
consult a foreign relative, who fells us that at Dinard, in France, they
catch the _équille_,--a small fish, also called a _lançon_, because it
darts in and out of the sand, and in its movements is something like an
eel.

That certainly describes this peculiar stream, for surely it would be
difficult to find one with a more circuitous course. It forms two
horseshoes and an ox-bow connected, as we see it from our windows; and
when the tide is out diminishes to a rivulet about two feet in width. At
flood it is more than twice the width of the Wissahickon, and when the
high tides of August come its magnitude is surprising.

Then we understand why the hay-ricks (which we wickedly tell our friends
from the "Hub" resemble gigantic loaves of Boston brown bread) are on
stilts, for, regardless of dikes or boundaries, this tortuous creek
spreads over its whole valley, as if in emulation of the greater river
of which it is a tributary. Haliburton says that for a time this was
called Allan's River, and the greater one was named the Dauphin; but we
are glad that the old French name was restored to the serpentine creek,
as it is so much better suited to its peculiar character.

The great event of the week is the arrival of the Boston steamer, when
all the town turns out and wends its way to the wharves.

The peculiar rise of the tide (thirty feet) is here plainly shown, as
one week the passengers step off from the very roof of the saloon, and
next time she comes in they disembark from the lowest gangway possible
and climb the long ascent of slippery planks to the level above.

The river shows curious currents and counter-currents, as bits of
_débris_ are hurrying upward in the middle of the stream, while similar
flotsam and jetsam rush away as rapidly down stream along both shores.

The queer old tub of a ferry boat, with its triangular wings spreading
at the sides,--used as guards and "gang planks",--is a curiosity, as it
zigzags across the powerful current to the village on the opposite
shore.

But "the ferryman's slim, the ferryman's young, and he's just a soft
twang in the turn of his tongue"; and in our frequent trips across he
probably makes a mental note when he hears us lamenting that we cannot
get lobsters, for one day he sends to our abiding place four fine large
ones, and will not receive a cent in remuneration.

Another time, when waiting for the farmer's you to guide us to the "ice
mine",--a ravine in the mountains where ice remains through the summer,
--a delicious lunch, consisting of fresh bread, sweet milk, and cake,
is unexpectedly set before us, and the generous farmer's wife will not
listen to recompense.

A modern writer says: "A great part of the enjoyment of life is in the
knowledge that there are people living in a worse place than that you
inhabit;" but it does not add to our happiness to think of those who
could not come to this lovely spot; and we commiserate the Can't-get-
away Club of the cities.

We would not change places with any of the dwellers at the fashionable
resorts at springs, sea, or mountains,--no, indeed! though they no doubt
would elevate their noses, and set this place down at once as "deadly
dull", or "two awfully slow for anything"!

Doubtless those also of our friends to whom we tell the plain,
unvarnished truth, if they come here will be disappointed, as they will
not see with our eyes. One cannot expect the luxuries of palatial
hotels at five dollars per day; such would be out of place here.

At our abiding place, which looks like a gentleman's residence, and is,
as one of the Halifax guests says, "not a bit like an 'otel", there is
an extensive garden, from which we are regaled with choice fresh
vegetables daily; and we have _such_ home-made butter (The bill of fare
"to be issued in our next"). A Frenchman might think that "we return to
our muttons" frequently; still, as that viand suggests at least the
famous English Southdown in excellence, we are resigned.

A noted wit has said: "Doubtless God might have made a better berry than
the strawberry, but doubtless God never did;" and if one is so fortunate
as to come to this country in proper season he can feast on that
delectable fruit in its perfection,--that is, the wild fruit, so much
more delicious and delicate in flavor than after its boasted
"improvement" by cultivation. If one arrives before the close of the
fisheries, salmon, fit for a royal banquet, graces the table; while
even in July and August he may enjoy shad; and strange enough it seems
to Philadelphians to be eating that fish at such time of year.

There are in the town a number of inns, and summer guests are also made
welcome and comfortable in many of the private residences. In one of
the latter--a large old-fashioned house, with antique furniture--three
sisters reside, who possess the quiet dignity and manner of the old
school; and here one would feel as if visiting at one's grandfather's,
and be made pleasantly "at home".

We are surprised to find that this old town has generally such modern
and New Englandish aspect; and are told that it has twice been nearly
destroyed by fire, even in modern times; therefore but few of the quaint
buildings remain. Some of these are picturesque and interesting, the one
combining jail and court house being a feature of the main street. The
window of one of the cells faces the street; and the prisoner's friends
sit on the steps without, whiling away the tedium of incarceration with
their converse.

The oldest dwelling in the town stands on St. George's Street, nearly
opposite the old-fashioned inn known as the Foster House. Its walls were
originally made of mud from the flats, held together by the wiry marsh
grass, which, being dried, was mixed in the sticky substance as hair is
in plaster; but as these walls gave way from the effects of time the
seams and cracks were plastered up, and by degrees boarded over, until
now the original shows only in one part of the interior.

The houses throughout this region are almost invariably without blinds
or outside shutters, and consequently look oddly to us, who are inclined
to screen ourselves too much from "the blessed sunshine". Bay windows
are popular.

We saw one small house with four double and two single ones, giving it
an air of impertinent curiosity, as the dwellers therein could look out
from every possible direction. The ancient dormer windows on the roofs
have given place to these queer bulging ones, which, in Halifax
especially, are set three in a row on the gray shingles, and bear
ludicrous resemblance to gigantic bee-hives.

In some of the shops, at the post office and railroad station, our money
is taken at a small discount; but in many of the shops they allow us
full value for it. In one the proprietor tells us of the sensation
caused here once by the failure of a Canadian bank, and the surprise of
the town's-people--whose faith seemed shaken in all such institutions--
when he continued to take United States bank bills. He says: "I told 'em
the United States Government hadn't failed, that I believed in it yet,
would take all their money I could get, and be glad to have it, too!"

To continue the impression of being in a foreign land, we must attend
service at the five or six different churches, and hear the prayers for
the Queen and Royal Family. In the first place of worship, where the
Octave augments the congregation, Victoria and many of her family are
mentioned by full name and title, in sonorous and measured tones; in the
next the pastor speaks of "Our Sovereign, and those under her and over
us;" in another "Our Queen" is simply referred to; and some ministers
who are suspected of being tinctured with republicanism sometimes
forget to make any special allusion to her Majesty.

In our walks up the main street, which is not remarkably bustling or
busy, we see long rows of great old hawthorn bushes bordering the road,
and giving quite an English touch to the scene; and everywhere gigantic
apple trees, which would delight an artist, so deliciously gnarled and
crooked are they.

I am not aware that astronomy is a favorite study with the inhabitants,
but have no doubt that _cidereal_ observations are popular at certain
seasons,--as this country is a famous apple growing district, and that
fruit, is sent from here to England and the States in vast quantities.
Octavius says, "If you would know what ann-apol-is, you should come
here in the fall," but is at once frowned down by the other seven for
this atrocity.

The valleys of Annapolis and Cornwallis yield an average crop of two
hundred thousand barrels of apples. Dealers in Bangor who paid 87 per
barrel in Boston for this fruit, have afterwards been chagrined on
discovering that it came from Annapolis originally, and that they could
have procured the same from that place direct at $2.25 to $3 per barrel.

Very lovely is the view from a hill outside the village, and there also
is the Wishing Rock,--one of the most noted objects of interest, as a
guide book would term it. "They say" that if one can run to the top
without assistance, or touching the rock with the hands, then whatever
one wishes will "come true". This feat it is almost impossible to
accomplish, as the stone has been worn smooth by countless feet before
ours; still the youthful and frisky members of our party must attempt
the ascent, with a run, a rush, and a shout, while the elders look on,
smiling benignly.

The dikes of L'Équille form a peculiar but pleasant promenade; and along
that narrow, circuitous path we frequently wander at sunset. These
embankments remain, in great part, as originally built by the Acadians,
and are formed of rubbish, brush, and river mud, over which sods are
closely packed, and for most of the season they are covered with tall
waving grass. This primitive sea wall is six or eight feet in width at
the base, and only about one foot wide at the top, so it is necessary
for him "who standeth" to "take heed lest he fall"; otherwise his
enthusiasm over the beauties of the prospect may receive a damper from
a sudden plunge into the water below.

There is a fine new rink in the village; and in the mornings those of
us who are novices in the use of rollers have a quiet opportunity to
practice and disport ourselves with the grace of a bureau, or other
clumsy piece of furniture on wheels!

Then we go to the wharves to witness the lading of lumber vessels. Some
of the logs floating in the water are so huge as to attest that there
are vast and aged forests somewhere in her Majesty's domains in America;
and the lumbermen, attired in rough corduroy, red shirts, and big boots,
balance themselves skillfully on some of the slippery trunks, while with
pole and boat-hook propelling other great ones to the gaping mouths in
the bow of the vessel. Then horse, rope, pulley, and windlass are
brought into play to draw the log into the hold and place it properly
among other monarchs of the forest, thus ignominiously laid low, and
become what "Mantalini" would style "a damp, moist, unpleasant lot."
From the wharf above we look down into the hold, and, seeing this black,
slimy, muddy cargo, say regretfully, "How are the mighty fallen!" as we
think of the grand forests of which these trees were once the pride and
glory, but of which ruthless man is so rapidly despoiling poor Mother
Earth.

We have brought with us those aids to indolence which a tiny friend of
ours calls "hang-ups", expecting to swing them in the woods and inhale
the odors of pine; but the woods are too far away; so we are fain to
sit under a small group of those trees at the end of the garden and gaze
upon the peaceful valley.

  "There in the tranquil evenings of summer, when brightly the sunset
  Lighteth the village street, and gildeth the vanes on the chimneys,"

we sit, when

  "Day with its burden and heat has departed, and twilight descending
  Brings back the evening star to the sky, and the herds to the
  homestead."

There we sit and talk of the romantic story, comparing notes as to our
ideal of the heroine; and such is the influence of the air of sentiment
and poetry pervading this region, that we decide that Boughton's
representation of her,

  "When in the harvest heat she bore to the reapers at noon-tide
  Flagons of home-brewed ale,...
  Nut-brown ale, that was famed for its strength in the village of Grand
  Pré,"

is too sturdy, as with masculine stride she marches a-field; and that
Constant Meyer's ideal more nearly approaches ours. The one depicts her
in rather Puritanical attire; the other, studying authentic costume,
they say, shows her

  "Wearing her Norman cap, and her kirtle of blue, and the ear rings,
  Brought in the olden time from France, and since, as an heirloom
  Handed down from mother to child, through long generations,"

and seated by the roadside, as,

  "with God's benediction upon her,
  a celestial brightness--a more ethereal beauty--
  Shone on her face and encircled her form."

All along the roads we notice a delicate white blossom, resembling the
English primrose in shape, and one day ask an intelligent looking girl
whom we meet what it is called; she does not know the name, but says the
seed was accidentally brought from England many years ago, and the plant
"has since become quite a pest",--which we can hardly understand as we
enjoy its grace and beauty. We notice that our pleasant informant
follows a pretty fashion of other belles of the village,--a fashion
which suits their clear complexions and bright faces; that is, wearing
a gauzy white scarf around the hat, and in the dainty folds a cluster of
fresh garden flowers.

The artist Boughton says. "The impressionist is a good antidote against
the illusionist, who sees too much, and then adds to it a lot that he
does not see." If he had ever visited this place we wonder what his
idea would be of this quaint poem, supposed to have been written in
1720, which we have unearthed.

We have acquired quite an affection for this pleasant old town, and
shall be loath to leave. If our friends think we are too enthusiastic,
we shall refer them to this old writer to prove that we have not said
all that we might; as he indulges in such airy flights of fancy and
such extravagant praise.

His description would lead one to expect to see a river as great as the
Mississippi, and mountains resembling the Alps in height, whereas in
reality it is a quiet and not extraordinary though most pleading
landscape which here "delights the eye".



ANNAPOLIS--ROYAL


  The King of Rivers, solemn calm and slow,
  Flows tow'rd the Sea yet fierce is seen to flow,
  On each fan Bank, the verdant Lands are seen,
  In gayest Cloathing of perpetual Green
  On ev'ry Side, the Prospect brings to Sight
  The Fields, the Flow'rs, and ev'ry fresh Delight
  His lovely Banks, most beauteously are grac'd
  With Nature's sweet variety of Taste
  Herbs, Fruits and Grass, with intermingled Trees
  The Prospect lengthen, and the Joys increase
  The lofty Mountains rise to ev'ry View,
  Creation's Glory, and its Beauty too.
  To higher Grounds, the raptur'd View extends,
  Whilst in the Cloud-top'd Cliffs the Landscape ends
  Fair Scenes! to which should Angels turn their Sight,
  Angels might stand astonished with Delight
  Majestic Grove in ev'ry View arise
  And greet with Wonder the Beholders' Eyes.
  In gentle Windings where this River glides,
  And Herbage thick its Current almost hides,
  Where sweet Meanders lead his pleasant Course,
  Where Trees and Plants and Fruits themselves disclose,
  Where never-fading Groves of fragrant Fir
  And beauteous Pine perfume the ambient Air,
  The air, at once, both Health and Fragrance yields,
  Like sweet Arabian or Elysian Fields
  Thou Royal Settlement! he washes Thee,
  Thou Village, blest of Heav'n and dear to me:
  Nam'd from a pious Sov'reign, now at Rest,
  The last of Stuart's Line, of Queens the best.
  Amidst the rural Joys, the Town is seen,
  Enclos'd with Woods and Hills, forever green
  The Streets, the Buildings, Gardens, all concert
  To please the Eye, to gratify the Heart.
  But none of these so pleasing or so fair,
  As those bright Maidens, who inhabit there.
  Your potent Charms fair Nymphs, my verse inspire,
  Your Charms supply the chaste poetic Fire.
  Could these my Strains, but live, when I'm no more,
  On future Fame's bright wings, your names should soar.
  Where this romantic Village lifts her Head,
  Betwixt the Royal Port and humble Mead,
  The decent Mansions, deck'd with mod'rate cost,
  Of honest Thrift, and gen'rous Owners boast;
  Their Skill and Industry their Sons employ,
  In works of Peace, Integrity and Joy.
  Their Lives, in Social, harmless Bliss, they spend,
  Then to the Grave, in honor'd Age descend.
  The hoary Sire and aged Matron see
  Their prosp'rous Offering to the fourth Degree:
  With Grief sincere, the blooming offspring close
  Their Parent's Eyes, and pay their Debt of Woes;
  Then haste to honest, joyous Marriage Bands,
  A newborn Race is rear'd by careful Hands:
  Thro' num'rous Ages thus they'll happy move
  In active Bus'ness, and in chastest Love.
  The Nymphs and Swains appear in Streets and Bowers
  As morning fresh, as lovely as the Flowers.
  As blight as Phoebus, Ruler of the Day,
  Prudent as Pallas, and as Flora gay.
  A Spire majestic roars its solemn Vane,
  Where Praises, Pray'r and true Devotion reign,
  Where Truth and Peace and Charity abound,
  Where God is fought, and heav'nly Blessings found.
  The gen'rous Flock reward their Pastor's care,
  His Pray'rs, his Wants, his Happiness they share
  Retir'd from worldly Care, from Noise and Strife,
  In sacred Thoughts and Deeds, he spends his Life,
  To mo'drate Bounds, his Wishes he confines,
  All views of Grandeur, Pow'r and Wealth resigns,
  With Pomp and Pride can cheerfully dispense,
  Dead to the World, and empty Joys of Sense,
  The Symphony of heav'nly Song he hears,
  Celestial Concord vibrates on his Ears.,
  Which emulates the Music of the Spheres
  The Band of active Youths and Virgins fan,
  Rank'd in due Order, by their Teacher's Care,
  The Sight of all Beholders gratify,
  Sweet to the Soul, and pleasing to the Eye
  But when their Voices found in Songs, of Praise,
  When they to God's high Throne their Anthems raise,
  By these harmonious Sounds, such Rapture's giv'n,
  Their loud Hosannas waft the Soul to Heav'n:
  The fourfold Parts in one bright Center meet,
  To form the blessed Harmony complete.
  Lov'd by the Good, esteemed by the Wise,
  To gracious Heav'n, a pleasing sacrifice.
  Each Note, each Part, each Voice, each Word conspire
  T' inflame all pious Hearts with holy Fire,
  Each one in Fancy seems among the Throng
  Of Angels, chanting Heav'n's eternal Song.
  Hail Music, Foretaste of celestial Joy!
  That always satiasts, yet canst never cloy:
  Each pure, refin'd, extatic Pleasure's thine,
  Thou rapt'rous Science! Harmony divine!
  May each kind Wish of ev'ry virtuous Heart
  Be giv'n to all, who teach, or learn thine Art:
  May all the Wise, and all the Good unite,
  With all the Habitants of Life and Light,
  To treat the Sons of Music with Respect,
  Their Progress to encourage and protect.
  May each Musician, and Musician's Friend
  Attain to Hymns divine, which never end.

Being a musical company, the Octave accept this peroration without
criticism, and do not seem to consider it an extravagant rhapsody,
though they are so daring as to take exception to other parts of the
queer old poem.

As we have come here for rest, we are not disturbed at finding that
trains, etc., are not always strictly "on time". We are summoned at 7:15
A.M., but breakfast is not served for more than an hour after; we engage
a carriage for two o'clock, and perhaps in the neighborhood of three see
it driving up in a leisurely manner. The people are wise, and do not
wear themselves out with unnecessary rush and hurry, as we do in the
States. The train advertised to start for Halifax at 2 P.M. more
frequently leaves at 3, or 3.30; but then it has to wait the arrival of
the steamboat which, four times per week, comes across from St. John.
The express train requires six hours to traverse the miles intervening
between this quiet village and that not much livelier town, while for
the accommodation train they allow ten hours; but when one comes to see
beautiful country one does not wish to have the breath taken away by
traveling at break-neck speed.

We know that some of our party are capable of raising a breeze, and we
are on a gal(e)a time anyhow; still, this is a remarkably breezy place,
the wind rising with the tide, so we understand why there are so few
flowers in the gardens,--the poor blossoms would soon be torn to pieces;
but the windows of the houses generally are crowded with thriving plants
gay with bloom, giving most cheery effect as one strolls about the town.

In our excursion to the Bay Shore we halt to water the horses at a neat
little cottage on the summit of the North Mountain, and even here the
little garden (protected from the winds by a fence) is all aflame with a
wonderful variety of large double and gorgeous poppies. From this point,
also, we have our first view of the wide Bay, shimmering in the hazy
sunlight far below, and can faintly trace the rugged hills of New
Brunswick in the distance.

Rapidly descending, we follow the coast for several miles, finally
stopping at a lonely house on the rocky and barren shore,--such a wild
spot as a novelist would choose to represent a smuggler's retreat; but
the family would not answer his purpose in that respect, for they are
homely and hospitable, agreeing at once to provide stabling for our
horses and to sell us some milk for our lunch. They drop their net
mending, come out _en masse_, and, on learning that some of us are from
Philadelphia, greet us like old friends, because their eldest daughter
is living in that distant city. The best pitcher is brought out for our
use, the whole establishment placed at our disposal, and, finding that
we will be so insane as to prefer to picnic under the few straggling
pines by the water instead of using their dining-room, several march
ahead to show the way to the rocky point; and we form a long and, of
course, imposing procession.

As we gaze along this barren and lonely shore, Octavia exclaims,
"Imagine the amazement of De Monts when he sailed along this iron-bound
coast and suddenly came upon that wonderful gateway which leads into the
beautiful Annapolis Basin and the fertile, lovely region beyond!" and we
all agree that it is a shame that the embouchure should now be known by
the vulgar title, Digby Gut, instead of its old cognomen, St. George's
Channel. "Why couldn't they call it the Gap or the Gate?" one exclaims;
"that wouldn't be quite so dreadful."

One evening some of our pleasant acquaintances in the town come to take
us to Lake La Rose, away up on the South Mountain; and there we embark
and glide over the placid water in the moonlight, rousing the echoes
with song, and vainly endeavoring to uproot the coy lilies, which
abruptly slip through our fingers, and "bob" down under the water as if
enjoying our discomfiture. But as Dame Nature tries her hand at painting
in water-colors, treating us to a series of dissolving views, the shower
forces us to hurry back to the village again.

Before leaving this "vale of rest", we must see the widely extended
panorama from the Mackenzie road, where hills beyond hills stretch away
to the horizon, and the lovely valley spreads itself like a map below.
The bird's-eye view from Parker's Mountain must also be seen, and many
other excursions accomplished. The old cannon of Lower Granville also
is "one of the sights". This ancient piece of ordnance was fired in old
times to notify the quiet country folk when news was received from
England. At such times relays, seven to ten miles apart, mounted in hot
haste and carried the messages on until Digby was reached; and from
thence a vessel conveyed the news to Boston.

As we are talking of all we have seen in this region, and of our various
enjoyments, Octavia exclaims, "Some persons thought we could not be
content here for a week; yet more than six have slipped away, and I'm
sure I don't want to go! I shall tell my friends that though we are
'remote', the rest of the quotation does not apply, for we are neither
'unfriended', 'melancholy', nor 'slow'!"

How often has it been our fate, when among the mountains of New
Hampshire, to see the grand ranges disappearing behind a thick curtain
of smoke, which, daily growing denser, at last almost completely blots
out Nature's pictures, so there is no use in undertaking excursions for
the sake of fine views. The explanation is invariably "fires in the
Canada woods"; and here, in this "cool, sequestered vale", we have an
opportunity of seeing forest fires before we take our departure for
other fields of observation. After sunset we are apparently almost
surrounded by volcanoes, as the lurid flames leap up into the deepening
blackness of the night; and when we lovers of Nature, distressed
afterwards by seeing vast tracts all scarred and desolate, exclaim,
"Why didn't they stop it? Why did they allow it?" echo answers, "Why?"

One day we learn that a mill on L'Équille is threatened, and expect that
there will be some excitement; but a very old-fashioned fire engine,
with clumsy hand power pumps, goes lumbering by, followed by men and
boys, who walk in a leisurely and composed manner. The mill is saved by
some means, however; and we rejoice, as it is, so to speak, historical,
standing in a place favored for such purposes since Lescarbot's time;
even Argall (in 1613), when demolishing other buildings of the village,
having spared the mill which occupied the site of the present one.

In our various wanderings we visit the Indian settlement at the head of
this crooked stream, but find its residents too civilized to be very
picturesque. We are interested in learning what the Canadian Government
does for their welfare, and wish a similar policy could be instituted
in the States. Here, as with us, liquor is their curse. The once famous
chief of the Micmacs lives at Bear River, and is addicted to the bottle.
One day a young girl, who was a summer guest at this place, sat down on
an overturned canoe which this chief (now known as James Meuse) had
just completed; and, as the bark bent with her weight, the wily Indian
pretended that the boat was irretrievably ruined. The girl's father,
asking what amount would compensate for the damage, received reply,
"Ten, twenty, dollar"; and receiving thirty dollars from the generous
stranger, Redskin remarked afterwards that he "wished more girl come sit
on boat", and probably turned the money into liquid fire, and poured it
down his throat in a short space of time. As there is a heavy fine for
selling liquor to Indians, one of that race will never divulge from
whom he has received it, however intoxicated he may be.

Another Indian sachem noted in history--Membertou--lived to the age of
one hundred and four, and was buried at Annapolis, then Port Royal,
with military honors, as befitted the companion of soldiers. At
Poutrincourt's table he was a daily and honored guest in that olden
time, and, when the "Order of Happy Times" was instituted there, of
course became a _member too!_ Query: Did that ancient convivial society
offer suggestions to the famous old "State in Schuylkill Club" of
Philadelphia when they were organizing so many years after?



DIGBY.


In the drive to Digby, twenty-one miles, we pass along all the ins and
outs of the shore of Annapolis Basin, finding the succession of views on
that curiously land-locked harbor a perfect study and delight, and more
picturesque than on the trip to the same place by steamer, as we
discover later.

There we see a bright-eyed, pretty little maiden, who wears a gay red
handkerchief in place of a hat, and makes a picture as she drives her
cow over a bit of moorland. Driver says she is "one of the French
people", and that her name is Thibaudia, which, with its English
signification (a kind of heath), seems appropriate for one living in
the wilds, and deliciously foreign and suggestive. We wonder if old
Crumplehorn understands French, and conclude that she is a well educated
animal, as she seems to obey directions without needing a touch of
willow branch to punctuate them.

  Sometimes it seems that the names conferred
  On mortals at baptism in this queer world
  Seem given for naught but to spite 'em.
  Mr. Long is short, Mr. Short is tall,
  And who so meek as Mr. Maul?
  Mr. Lamb's fierce temper is very well known,
  Mr. Hope plods about with sigh and groan,--
  "And so proceed ad infinitum"

At one point on our route, when we are passing through a lonely and
apparently uninhabited region, our jolly driver, "Manyul", remarks,
"Here's where Nobody lives."; and one replies, "Yes, evidently; and I
shouldn't think any one would wish to." But a turn of the road brings a
house in sight; and driver says, "That's his house, and his name is
actually Nobody" (Charles, I believe). We quote, "What's in a name!"
and conclude that if he is at all like the kindly people of this region
whom we have met he may be well content to be nobody, rather than
resemble many whom the world considers "somebodies", but who are not
models in any respect.

Our driver is quite a character in his way, and in the winter he "goes
a loggin'". On learning this we ply him with questions in such manner as
would surprise a lawyer, eliciting in return graphic pictures of camp
life in New Brunswick wildernesses, and the amusements with which they
while away the long evenings in their rough barracks. He describes
their primitive modes of cooking, their beds of fragrant spruce boughs
overlaid with straw,--"Better 'n any o' your spring mattresses, I tell
_you_!"--the queer box-like bunks along the wall where they "stow
themselves away", and where the most active and useful man is, for the
time at least, literally laid on the shelf.

Octavius, thinking how much he would enjoy "roughing it" thus, asks
what they would charge to take a young man to board in camp; and driver
indignantly replies, "_Nothin'_! Do you suppose we'd charge board? No,
_indeed_! Just let him come; and if we didn't give him a good time, and
if he didn't get strong and hearty, then we'd be ashamed of ourselves
and _sell out_."

Here we approach a cove which driver calls the Joggin (as it makes a cut
or jog-in, we presume); and beyond, a wide arm of the Basin is spanned
by a rickety old bridge, at least a quarter of a mile long, named in
honor of her Majesty,--hardly a compliment to that sovereign, we think.
The boards are apparently laid down without nails, and rattle like a
fusillade as our vehicle rolls over them. Here and there planks are
broken or gone entirely, showing the green swirling water beneath. Our
chaperone, having more faith in her own feet than those of the horses,
dismounts and walks across; while we, being naturally reckless and
romantic, are willing to risk our necks for the sake of the charming
views.

The village of Digby stretches along the shore, and from the hills
surrounding it the Basin with its islands, the Gap, and Annapolis
River, are charming.

Disciples of old "Izaak" would be likely to meet with greater success
here than at Annapolis; as the current of the river at the latter place
is so strong that, as a general thing, only the "old salts" are anglers;
and they being most of the time out in the Bay or off on cruises, it
follows that fish are scarce in the market.

An "ancient and fish-like smell" pervades the atmosphere in some parts
of the village where the herring--humorously known as "Digby
Chickens"--are spread on racks to dry; but this odor, the odd little
shops and restaurants, the clumsy and queer lumber boats, the groups of
tars gossiping about doorways and wharves, only add to the nautical
character of the place, and suggest reminiscences of "Peggoty", "Ham",
and others of Dickens's characters.

We ignore the pleasant embowered hotel "in bosky dell", far up the
street this time, though we visit it in a later sojourn; and, "just for
the fun of it", take lunch in one of the peculiar little restaurants;
where, seated at a minute table in one of the tiny calico curtained
alcoves, we partake of our frugal repast (the bill of fare is extremely
limited), amusing ourselves watching the odd customers who come to make
purchases at the counter across the room, and "making believe" that we
are characters in an old English story.

On the bluff beyond the village, beneath great old Balm of Gilead trees
whose foliage is perpetually in a flutter from the breeze through the
Gap, there are several cannon, which it seems could not possibly have
any hostile intent, but appear to be gratifying a mild curiosity by
peering across the Basin and up the river beyond.

The long and very high pier stretches far out into the Basin, and upon
it picturesque groups unconsciously pose for us, adding to the effect
of the picture.

That the climate is salubrious and conducive to longevity we are
convinced after visiting the cemetery, where one tomb records the
demise of a man at the age of one hundred and two!

A peculiar taste for wandering among the tombs we have acquired in this
summer jaunt. Here we see the tomb of one recorded proudly as "descended
from the noble families of Stuart and Bruce", who, tradition says, was
supposed to have held the position of servant to said scions of
nobility. One who was known as a scoffer during life here is virtuously
represented ah "a sincere worshipper of Eternal, Almighty and ever just
God"; reminding us of the popular adage, "lying like an epitaph". Twice
have we seen one stone made to do service for two in an amusing manner:
on the upper part the usual, "Sacred to the memory of," etc.; then
half-way down had been carved a hand pointing to one side, and under it
the words "There lies"; while the name, age, etc., of the later
decedent was inscribed below the first.

One old tomb we were with this epitaph:--

  "Tho' gready worm destroy my skin
  And gnaw my wasting flesh
  When God doth build my bones agen
  He'll cloath them all afresh."

and another:--

  "What says the silent dead
  He bids me bear my load
  With silent steps proceed
  And follow him to God."

We notice that the English rule of the road maintains here, and our
driver turns to the left when other vehicles are approaching. Captain
C., who is from the States, tells us that he did not know of this
custom, and in his first drive nearly collided with another vehicle, the
driver of which thereupon used strong language. On being informed that
he had almost overturned the conveyance of the Governor of Prince
Edward's Island, the rash Yankee, undismayed, remarked, "Well, I don't
care who he is, he don't know how to drive!"



HALIFAX


Of course, as we are in the neighborhood, we must see the locality to
which--in mild and humorous profanity--States people are sometimes
assigned; and therefore proceed to Halifax and thoroughly "do" that
sedate, quiet, and delightfully old-fashioned city.

_En route_, as the train passes beyond Windsor, one says, "Here we are
out of sight of land"; and we then understand that it must have been
some one from this locality who christened the valley of Annapolis the
Garden of Nova Scotia; for here a scene of utter sterility and
desolation meets the view: not a foot of earth is to be seen, but rocks
are piled in wild confusion everywhere. A few dead trees stand among the
_débris_, emphasizing the loneliness; and Conductor says when the world
was created the "leavings" were deposited in this dreary tract.

By special arrangement with "Old Prob", there are none of the
prevailing fogs during our stay; and Aurora Borealis gets up a special
illumination. Regiments of red-coats, with torches and band,--aware
doubtless of the presence of such distinguished strangers,--march past
our hotel in the evening.

Though we are quartered in what is called the best hotel, it is a musty,
fusty, rusty old building; and we agree with our friends among the
residents (who vie with each other in showing us true English
hospitality) who say they need an enterprising Yankee to start a good
new hostelry, and "to show 'em how to run it."

Just at this time of year the city is full of summer tourists, many of
whom come direct from Baltimore by the ocean steamships, which touch at
this port; but, as we are subject to _mal-de-mer's_ tortures, we rejoice
that we came by "overland route".

Though our friends have engaged rooms for us beforehand, we are
fortunate in securing apartments on the fourth floor, where peculiar
coils of rope by the windows at once attract our attention. These, on
examination, we find have big wooden beads (like the floats of a seine)
strung on them at regular intervals; and this peculiar arrangement is a
primitive fire escape, which we are positive that no creature but a
monkey could use with safety.

The prevailing fogs, and the use of soft coal, cause the buildings to
appear dingy and rusty; but we like them all the better for that, as
the city has a more foreign air, and, in some parts, quite strongly
suggests Glasgow.

In the Parliament building we study the old portraits, concluding that
the wigs must have been uncomfortable. Octavius wickedly hints that
there _is_ a fashion among ladies of the present time!--but as he does
not tread on our toes, we ignore this insinuation, and turn our
attention to the elaborate ornamentation of the woodwork--which is all
antique hand-carving--in the council chambers; and are much interested
in some rare old books in the Library,--among them a copy of the Psalms,
three hundred years old; and another, with music, dated 1612. Here also
we see and are actually allowed to handle a book,--

                              "PRESENTED
                                  TO
                        THE LEGISLATIVE LIBRARY
                                  OF
                              NOVA SCOTIA
                 IN MEMORY OF HER GREAT AND GOOD HUSBAND
                                  BY
                        HIS BROKEN-HEARTED WIDOW
                              VICTORIA R."

and of course are duly overpowered at beholding the valuable autograph
of that sovereign.

In one of the churches we are informed that a certain balustrade "is
from America, and is all _marvel_" but do not find it marvelously
beautiful nevertheless.

Of the gardens the natives are justly proud, as in this moist atmosphere
plants, trees, and flowers flourish remarkably; still, we are not
willing to concede that they are "the finest in America", as we have
been told.

We conclude, as we pass the large Admiralty House, with its spacious
and beautiful grounds, that Sir Somebody Something must find it a
comfortable thing to be

  "monarch of the sea, the ruler of the Queen's nave,"

and may with reason say,--

  "When at anchor here I ride, my bosom swells with pride,"

while Halifax herself, with her famous harbor, in which the navy of a
great and powerful nation could find safe anchorage, with room to spare,
might justly finish out his song with the appropriate words concluding
the verse:--

  "And I snap my fingers at a foeman's taunts!"

Then the Citadel, the very name of which revives reminiscences of
Quebec, and suggests something out of the every-day order of summer
jaunts. As we ascend the hill to the fortress, the first thing
attracting our attention is amusing. The "squatty" looking clock tower,
which appears as if part of a church spire, had been carried away by a
high wind and dropped down on this embankment. Octavius says, "What a
jolly place for coasting, if it were not for the liability of being
plunged into the harbor at the foot!" as we mount the hill. At the gate
we are consigned to the care of a tall soldier, whose round fatigue cap
must be _glued_ to his head, or it certainly would fall off, so extreme
is the angle at which it inclines over his ear. A company of soldiers
are drilling within the enclosure, their scarlet coats quite dazzling
in the bright sunlight and in contrast with the cold gray granite; while
others, at opposite angles of the walls, are practicing signals with
flags, the maneuvers of the latter being quite entertaining as they
wave the banners, now slowly, now rapidly, diagonally, vertically,
horizontally, or frantically overhead, as if suddenly distraught.
Probably this exercise could be seen in any of our forts; but as we are
now beyond the borders of the United States, every detail interests us,
and we have become astonishingly observant. The gloomy and massive bomb
proof walls of the soldiers' quarters appear quite prison-like, with
their narrow windows; and our guide, speaking of the monotony of
garrison life, rejoices that in a few months his term of service will
expire, and then he "will go to the States".

"The States" seem to be a Land of Promise to many people of this region;
and, though this is gratifying to our national pride, we cannot but see
that many make a mistake in going to "America"; as, for instance, the
young girls of Annapolis, who, leaving comfortable homes, the away to
Boston, where, if they can get positions in an already crowded field,
they wear themselves out in factories; or, having a false pride which
prevents them from acknowledging failure and returning home, they remain
until, broken down by discouragement and disappointment, compelled to
accept charity. On this account the service at Annapolis is not what
might be desired; and Octavius humorously wonders, when the "green hand"
persistently offers him viands from the wrong side, "how he is expected
to reach the plate unless he puts his arm around her."

"But we digress." As our party, with other sight seers who have joined
the procession, promenade about the fort, a culprit in the guardroom
catches sight of the visitors as they pass, and, evidently for their
hearing, sings mischievously,--

  "Farewell, my own!
  Light of my life, farewell!
  For crime unknown
  I go to a dungeon cell"

We conclude, as he is so musical about it, that he does not feel very
much disgraced or oppressed by his imprisonment, though some one
curiously inquiring "why he is there", learns that it is for a trifling
misdemeanor, and that punishments are not generally severe; though the
guide tells of one soldier who, he says, "threw his cap at the Colonel,
and got five years for it; and we thought he'd get ten."

From the ramparts the picture extending before us southeastwardly is
very fine indeed, as, over the rusty houses shouldering each other up
the hill so that we can almost look down the chimneys, we look out to
the fortified islands and points, with the ocean beyond.

Point Pleasant, thickly wooded to the water's edge, hides the strangely
beautiful inlet from the harbor known as the North West Arm, which cuts
into the land for a distance of four miles (half a mile in width),
suggesting a Norwegian fiord; but that, and the country all about the
city, we enjoy in a long drive later.

On the return, regardless of the gaze of passengers astonished at our
unconventional actions, we sit on the platform of the rear car, while

  "Pleasantly gleams in the soft, sweet air the Basin of Minas."

and the model conductor plies us with bits of information, which we
devour with the avidity of cormorants.



GRAND PRÉ.


Finally the brakeman shouts "Grand _Pree_;" and Octavia remarks, "Yes,
indeed, this is the _grand prix_ of our tour," as the party step off the
train at this region of romance. The gallant conductor, with an air of
mystery, leads the way to a storage room in the little box of a station,
and there chops pieces from a clay-covered plank and presents us as
souvenirs. "Pieces of a coffin of one of the Acadians, exhumed at Grand
Pré fourteen months ago, near the site of the old church," we are told;
and when he continues: "A woman's bone was found in it", one unromantic
and matter-of-fact member of the Octave asserts, "Evangeline's
grandmother, of course"; while another skeptically remarks, "That's more
than _I_ can swallow; it would give me such a spell o' coughin' as I
couldn't get over"; but the conductor and others staunchly avouch the
genuineness of the article, affirming that they were present "when it
wus dug up."

The "forest primeval", if it ever stood in this region, must have
clothed the distant hills which bound the vast meadow, and now are
covered with a dense growth of small trees which are _not_ "murmuring
pines".

A superannuated tree in the distance it is said once shaded the smithy
of "Basil Lajeunesse", that "mighty man of the village"; and only stony
hollows in the ground mark the site of the house of "Father Felician"
and the village church.

It was to this spot, then, that the wondering peasants were lured by
stratagem, when,--

  "with a summons sonorous
  Sounded the bell from its tower, and over the meadows a drum beat.
  Thronged ere long was the church with men. Without in the churchyard,
  Waited the women. They stood by the graves, and hung on the head
  stones
  Garlands of autumn leaves and evergreens fresh from the forest
  Then came the guard from the ships, and marching proudly among them,
  Entered the sacred portal. With loud and dissonant clangor
  Echoed the sound of their brass drums from ceiling to casement,--
  Echoed a moment only, and slowly the ponderous portal
  Closed, and in silence the crowd awaited the will of the soldiers."

After refreshing ourselves with pure, clear, and cold water from the old
well,--made by the French, and re-walled a few years ago,--we turn away,
with "a longing, lingering look behind", and continue our drive through
the great prairie, which resembles the fertile meadow land along the
Connecticut River. We stop a few moments near a picturesque little
church of gray unpainted wood, and look off over the verdant fields to
the point where a distant shimmer of water catches the eye, and the
hills bound the picture. Near at hand, on the right, the trunk of an
aged apple tree, "planted by the French", shows one green shoot; and
about the church are Lombardy poplars, which, though good sized trees,
are perhaps only shoots from those planted by the Acadians, in
remembrance of such arboreal grenadiers of their native land.

The old French dike is surmounted by a rough rail fence, and is now far
inland, as hundreds of acres have been reclaimed beyond,--

  "Dikes that the hands of the farmers had raised with labor incessant
  Shut out the turbulent tides"

Our lamented American poet never visited this region which he describes
so delightfully; his reason being that, cherishing an ideal picture, he
feared reality might dissipate it. Yet an easy journey of twenty-eight
hours would have brought him hither; and we, feeling confident that he
could not have been disappointed, shall always regret that he did not
come.

As an appropriate close to this sentimental journey, we drive through
the secluded Gaspereau valley, along the winding river, which is hardly
more than a creek, toward its wider part where it flows into the Basin,
which stretches out broad and shining. With such a view before us, we
cannot fail to picture mentally the tragic scenes of that October day
in 1755, when the fleet of great ships lay in the Basin, and

  "When on the falling tide the freighted vessels departed,
  Bearing a nation, with all its household gods, into exile,
  Exile without an end, and without an example in story,"

those whom Burke describes as "the poor, innocent, deserving people,
whom our utter inability to govern or reconcile, gave us no sort of
right to extirpate," were torn from their happy homes, and

"Scattered like dust and leaves, when the mighty blasts of October
 Seize them, and whirl them aloft, and sprinkle them far o'er the ocean."

In the midst of these peaceful scenes was perpetrated a cruel wrong,
and an inoffensive people banished by the mandate of a tyrant!

In that beautiful poem, parts of which one unconsciously "gets by
heart", or falls into the habit of quoting when sojourning in this
lovely region, Basil the blacksmith says:--

  "Louisburg is not forgotten, nor Beau-Séjour nor Port Royal;"

and having held an impromptu history class on the subject of the last
mentioned, we turn our attention to the other fortified points of which
"the hasty and somewhat irascible" sledge-wielder spoke.

By the treaty of Utrecht in 1713 Acadia was ceded to the English; but
the French colonists, in taking the oath of allegiance to their new
rulers (1727-28), were promised that they should not be required at any
time to take up arms against France. They were now in the position of
Neutrals, and by that name were known; but this placed them in an
awkward predicament, as they were suspected by both contending powers.
The English hated them, believing their sympathies to be with the
French; while even their countrymen in Canada were distrustful of them,
urging them to withdraw.

The English colonists, fearing the extension of the French possessions,
and having Puritanical aversion of Roman Catholicism,--of which the
Neutrals were devout adherents,--entered upon the expedition against
the French forts with the zeal of fanatics, seeming in some instances to
consider their incursions in the light of religious crusades.

These "men whose lives glided on like rivers that water the woodlands",
whose descendants are to this day childlike and simple hearted, could
not understand these political distinctions, and naturally clung to the
pleasant farms which they had reclaimed from the sea and cultivated so
diligently, being most reluctant, of course, to leave those

  "Strongly built houses, with frames of oak and of chestnut,
  Such as the peasants of Normandy built in the reign of the Henries.
  Thatched were the roofs, with dormer windows, and gables projecting
  Over the basement below protected and shaded the doorway."

The French dominions were guarded by a chain of forts extending all
along the Atlantic coast, from the St. Lawrence to the Gulf of Mexico.
That on Cape Breton Island, which protected the approach to the St.
Lawrence, was considered invincible, its walls being thirty feet high,
forty feet thick, and surrounded by a moat eighty feet in width.

Boston sent out a fleet of forty-one vessels and three thousand men to
Cape Breton, to assail the "Gibraltar of America", as the fort of
Louisburg was called. Forces from New Hampshire and Connecticut joined
the expedition at Canso; and this remarkable fortress, whose
fortifications alone cost five million dollars, was besieged, and
capitulated after forty-nine days, yielding to untrained soldiers; the
victory owing to "mere audacity and hardihood, backed by the rarest good
luck", as one English writer says. The conquerors themselves were amazed
at their success when they discovered the great strength of the fort.
Their victory was, in fact, due largely to maneuvers which deceived the
French regarding the strength of their forces.

This was ten years before the dispersion of the French Neutrals was
effected; and during those years the Acadians, being zealous Catholics
and devoted to the mother country, naturally but almost unconsciously
were drawn into the disputes between France and England; and it is not
to be wondered at, if, as some authorities state, there were three
hundred of their young men found in arms when the English attacked Fort
Beau-Séjour. The French had built Forts Beau-Séjour and Gaspereau on the
neck connecting the peninsula of Nova Scotia with the mainland, to guard
the entrance to their territory. A few hotheaded youths, who thought
they were honestly serving their country and people by taking up arms in
defense, might have been forgiven, particularly as it is known that some
were pressed into the service, and that the oath which they had taken
years before absolved them from taking arms against France, but did not
pledge them against serving in her defense.

These forts were taken by Lieutenant-Colonel Moncton in June, 1755, the
garrison of Beau-Séjour being sent to Louisburg on condition that they
should not take up arms in America for six months. Prince Edward's
Island--then called St. John's Island--fell into the hands of the
English when Cape Breton was taken, and the inhabitants were sent to
France. In the summer of 1755 matters seemed to be culminating, and the
bitter dissensions were brought to a crisis. The Neutrals were again
called upon to take the oath, the following being the form in which it
was presented to them: "Je promets et jure sincerement, en foi de
Chrétien, que je serai entierement fidele et obeirai vraiment sa Majesté
Le Roi George, que je reconnais pour le Souverain seigneur de l'Acadie,
ou nouvelle Ecosse--ainsi Dieu me soit en aide."

But this was not the "reserved oath", as the former one was called; and
the Acadians, feeling themselves bound by the old pledge, asked
exemption from this, and requested the restoration of arms which had
been taken from them, agreeing also to keep faithfully the old form of
oath.

Deputies from the settlements near Port Royal (which were above, below,
and almost on the site of the present town of Annapolis), at Pisiquid
(now Windsor), Minas, etc., were sent to Halifax, where a long
conference was held; but the deputies still declining to accept the new
oath, they were imprisoned, and the deportation of the Acadians decided
upon. In order to do this artifice was resorted to, to prevent the
people from suspecting what was in store for them, and that the poor
peasants might have no chance to leave themselves or carry away their
possessions. "Both old men and young men, as well as the lads of ten
years of age," were called, by a proclamation, "to attend at the church
at Grand Pré" at a certain time; and it was declared that "no excuse"
would "be admitted, on any pretence whatever, on pain of forfeiting
goods and chattels, in default of real estate."

The settlers on the Basin of Minas were immigrants from Saintonge,
Poitou, and La Rochelle, who came to this country in the early part of
the seventeenth century. The land which they had reclaimed from the
Basin was rich and fertile; they exported grain to Boston, and became
prosperous. The object of the call to the church does not seem to have
been suspected. When Basil says,--

  "Four days now are passed since the English ships at their anchors
  Ride in the Gaspereau's mouth, with their cannon pointed against us
  What their designs may be is unknown; but all are commanded
  On the morrow to meet in the church, where his Majesty's mandate
  Will be proclaimed as law in the land;"

Benedict responds,--

  "Perhaps the harvests in England
  By the untimely rains or untimelier heat have been blighted,
  And from our bursting barns they would feed their cattle and
  children."

But in the church the mystery was solved soon enough, and naturally a
terrible scene ensued. They were informed that their "lands, tenements,
cattle, and livestock of all kinds were to be forfeited to the crown,
with all their effects, saving their money and household goods," and
they themselves banished; though, "so far as the capacity of the
transports permitted," they were "to be allowed to carry their household
goods with them." They were also promised that families should not be
separated, and that the transportation should be made as easy as
possible.

Then they were declared prisoners, and the church became the guardhouse.
Ten men at a time were allowed to leave the building, to pack their
goods and assist in the preparations for departure; and when they
returned ten others were also permitted to leave for a time. While
Moncton was destroying Remsheg, Shediac, and other towns on the Gulf
coast, Handfield gathered up the French Annapolitans, and Murray those
about Windsor, putting them on shipboard; and on the 21st of October the
ships, with their wretched passengers, set sail. In the confusion and
hurry of embarkation some families were separated; and it is on this
fact that the story of Evangeline is founded.

Most of the exiles were scattered among the towns of Massachusetts; and
in the State House in Boston some curious old records relate to them,
one town desiring compensation "for keeping three French pagans", from
which it seems that there was still prejudice against them because of
their religion.

  "From the cold lakes of the north to sultry southern Savannahs,"

to the region where

  "On the banks of the Teche are the towns of St. Maur and St Martin,"

to the parish of Attakapas

  "and the prairies of fair Opelousas"

in Louisiana, some of the exiles wandered. Their descendants live there
at the present time, and are known as Cajeans. Though sometimes harshly
treated in the towns where they were quartered, though shouldered off
from one village to another when one grew weary of or made excuses for
not maintaining them, the poor wanderers were mild, gentle, and
uncomplaining.

A writer in "Canadian Antiquities" says: "None speaks the tongue of
Evangeline; and her story, though true as it is sweet and sorrowful, is
heard no more in the scenes of her early days."

The way in which it came about that Longfellow wrote his poem was in
this wise: one day, when Hawthorne and a friend from Salem were dining
with the poet, the Salem gentleman remarked to the host, "I have been
trying to persuade Hawthorne to write a story based on a legend of
Acadie and still current there,--the legend of a girl who, in the
dispersion of the Acadians, was separated from her lover, and passed
her life in waiting and seeking for him, and only found him dying in a
hospital when both were old." The host, surprised that this romance did
not strike the fancy of the novelist, asked if he himself might use it
for a poem; and Hawthorne, readily assenting, promised not to attempt
the subject in prose until the poet had tried what he could do with it
in metrical form. No one rejoiced more heartily in the success of the
world-renowned poem than the writer who generously gave up an
opportunity to win fame from his working up of the sad theme.

Authorities differ widely regarding the number of persons expelled from
Acadia, many historians giving the estimate at seven thousand. In a
letter from Governor Lawrence to the governors of the different colonies
to which the exiles were sent, he says: "As their numbers amount to near
seven thousand persons, the driving them off with leave to go whither
they pleased would have doubtless strengthened Canada with so
considerable a number of inhabitants." Bryant says: "Seven thousand
probably represented with sufficient accuracy the total French
population of Acadia in 1755; but the entire number of the exiled did
not exceed, if Minot be correct, two thousand, of whom many
subsequently returned to Acadia."

Five years after the departure of the exiles a fleet of twenty-two
vessels sailed from Connecticut for Grand Pré with a large number of
colonists, who took possession of the deserted farms. They found sixty
ox carts and yokes, while on the edge of woods of the inland country and
in sheltered places heaps of bones told of cattle which had perished of
starvation and cold after their owners were forced to leave them to such
a fate. A few straggling families of the Acadians were also found, who
had escaped from the search of the soldiers, and had lived in hiding in
the wilds of the back country for five years, and during that time had
not tasted bread.



CLARE


  "Only along the shore of the mournful and misty Atlantic
  Linger a few Acadian peasants, whose fathers from exile
  Wandered back to their native land to die in its bosom.
  In the fisherman's cot the wheel and the loom are still busy,
  Maidens still wear their Norman caps and their kirtles of homespun,
  And by the evening fire repeat Evangeline's story."

Resolved to see these curious "Clare settlements," extending for fifty
miles on the coast, where descendants of the French Acadians live in
peace and unity, we reluctantly take our departure at last from dear old
Annapolis, which has been our restful haven so long, and where we have
been reviving school days in studying history and geography seasoned
with poetry and romance. Although it was expected that the W. C. R. R.
would be completed from Yarmouth to Annapolis by the latter part of
1876, we are pleased to find that this is not the case, and that we
shall have to take steamer, train, and carriage to our destination;
anticipating that any place so out of the beaten track must be
interesting.

The French settlements, a succession of straggling hamlets, were
founded by descendants of the exiles, who,--

  "a raft as it were from the shipwrecked nation,...
  Bound by the bonds of a common belief and a common misfortune,"

drifted back to "L'Acadie" in 1763, the year of the treaty between
France and England.

The lands of their fathers in their old haunts on the Basin of Minas
were in possession of people from New England; and, having a natural and
inherited affection for localities by the sea, they wandered down the
coast and scattered along shore as we find them now.

A pleasant excursion by steamer to Digby, thence proceeding some miles
by rail, finally a long but charming drive by the shore of St. Mary's
Bay, and we are set down at the house of a family of the better class,
among these kindly and old-fashioned farming and fisher folk. This
beautiful bay is thirty-five miles long, was christened Baie St. Marie
by Champlain, and here the four ships of De Monts lay in calm and secure
harbor for two weeks in 1604, while the adventurers were examining the
shores of Nova Scotia,--explorations in which the discovery of iron
pyrites deluded them with the belief that this would prove an El
Dorado.

Madame M. at first looks dismayed at the appearance of such a group of
strangers at her door, and is sure she cannot accommodate us; but her
daughters slyly jog her elbow, saying something in an undertone, as if
urging her to consent, and we are made most comfortable.

At first the family are a little shy, but in a couple of days we become
quite well acquainted; and, when the time comes for our departure they
"wish we could stay longer",--a wish which we heartily re-echo.

Madame proudly displays her treasures in hand-spun and home-woven linen
and blankets; also a carpet, the material for which she first spun, then
dyed, and finally wove; and, though it has been in use for ten years,
it is still fresh and shows no apparent wear. In response to our
entreaties, she shows us the loom, and brings out her spinning wheel to
instruct us in that housewifely accomplishment. How easy it looks, as
the fleecy web moves through her fingers, and winds in smooth, even yarn
on the swiftly turning reel; and, oh, what bungling and botching when
we essay that same! The two pretty, modest, and diffident daughters are
quite overcome at last, and join in our peals of merriment.

One--oh bliss!--is named _Evangeline_, and, if we understand correctly,
there is an old name similar to this among these people. Though they
sing some charming old French chansons for us, the two sweet girls
cannot be induced to converse in that language. Madame laughs, saying,
"Dey know dey doant speak de _goot_ French, de fine French, so dey will
only talk Angleesh wid you." But in the evening, when Octavia sings an
absurd college song, with a mixture of French and English words, they
enjoy the fun; and immediately set to work to learn:--

  "Oh, Jean Baptiste, pourquoi vous grease
  My little dog's nose with tar?
  Madame, je grease his nose with tar
  Because he have von grand catarrh,
  Madame, je grease his nose
  Parcequ'il he vorries my leetle fite chat."

Then the pretty Evangeline in turn becomes instructor, the theme being
an ancient peasant song of France which her grandmother used to sing.
One plays the melody from memory, while the other hastily rules a bit
of paper and writes off the notes, afterwards copying the words from a
scrap of tattered manuscript; and thus the lady from "America" feels
that she has secured a pretty souvenir of the visit:

LES PERLES ET LES ÉTOILES.

1.
  Comme les perles et les é - tol – les
  Or-nent dé - ja le front des cleux
  La nuit e-tend partout votle
  Elle vient de ju fermer mes yeux,
  Re - viendras tu dans un doux songe,
  O mon bel ange, tor que j'adore
  Me re - pe - ter divers mensonges
  Me re - pe - ter -ye taime encore--

2.
  Sur un soup-çon tu t'es en—fuie
  Je pleure bélas ton a - ban – don
  Par un bais er je t'en supplie
  Viens m’accorder undous pardon
  Oh crois le bien ma bonne a se
  Pour te revoir oh om, un jor,
  Je donnerais toute ma vie
  Je donnerais tous mes amours

The word "_mensonges_" has not the meaning in French which our literal
translation would give it. It probably signifies the pretty falsehoods
or white lies to which lovers are somewhat addicted. The next day is
Sunday, and troops of people, in their peculiar costume, appear on the
road from all directions, wending their way to the great white wooden
church.

Despite the innate grace of the French, of which we hear so much, we
see that the young men among these peasants are not unlike the shy and
awkward country lads of Yankee land. Before and between the services
they roost on the fence opposite the church, while the young
girls--totally oblivious of their proximity, of course--gather in groups
on the other side of the road, gossiping. We infer that many have come a
long distance to attend service, as we see several families eating their
lunch, picnic fashion, in the fields near the church. In the church,
what a sensation the strangers make, and how interesting is the service!
To one of us, at least, the grand service of Notre Dame of Paris was
not so impressive as this. In the one case, a famous Bishop, robed in
priceless lace and cloth of gold, with a troop of acolytes at the altar,
while the most famous singers of the Opera filled the vast structure
with rapturous melody; in the other, a large plain wooden building with
glaring windows of untinted glass; the priest in vestments of coarse
Nottingham lace and yellow damask,--but with spiritual, benignant
countenance,--and a choir of untrained voices. A company of men droned
out Gregorian chants in painfully nasal tones, using antique books with
square headed notes; then the sweet voice of our host's daughter,
Evangeline, sounded solo, and her youthful companions in the choir took
up the chorus of the Kyrie Eleison:--

  "Then came the evening service.
  The tapers gleamed from the altar,
  Fervent and deep was the voice of the priest, and the people
  responded,
  Not with their lips alone, but with their hearts; and the Ave Maria
  Sang they, and fell on their knees, and their souls with devotion
  translated,
  Rose on the ardor of prayer, like Elijah ascending to heaven."

The young girls array themselves in hats and costumes which are only two
or three years behind the prevailing mode; but the attire of the middle
aged and elderly women is striking and peculiar. For Sundays, this is
invariably black throughout, and yet does not look funereal. The dress
is of plain bombazine or alpaca, a shawl folded square, and over the
head a large silk handkerchief, which must be put on with greatest
exactness and care to make just so many folds at the sides with a huge
knot under the chin; while the point at the back hangs below the neck,
and generally has one or more initials neatly worked in colors
("cross-stitch") in the corner. As most have clear olive complexion,
with rich color in the cheeks, arid lustrous black eyes, this headdress
is surprisingly becoming, giving quite a gypsyish effect.

During the week, a calico dress with long white apron is worn by women
and children, and over the head a light chintz handkerchief, or a gay
"bandanna";--quite suggestive of the every day wear of foreign
peasantry. We are told that a girl's wealth is sometimes estimated by
the number of handkerchiefs she owns. Mrs. R. says she has, in winter,
seen a girl divest herself of no less than ten head-kerchiefs; taking
them off, one by one, and carefully folding them in the most natural
manner, as if there could be nothing uncommon or amusing in the
proceeding.

The old women, in winter, wear enormous cloaks, made with a large square
yoke, into which eight or ten breadths of material are closely plaited,
--this unwieldy garment completely enveloping them from head to foot.

These distinctive features in costume are disappearing, and ere long our
American peasantry may become commonplace and uninteresting. Let us hope
that they may never lose the sweet simplicity, frankness, honesty,
thrift, and other pleasing characteristics which they now possess.

In the houses is seen a peculiar rocking-settle, similar to those in use
among the Pennsylvania Dutch. This odd piece of furniture has one end
railed in front to serve for cradle; so papa, mamma, and baby can rock
and "take comfort" together.

Towards evening we visit the convent, where the sisters--who probably do
not receive frequent calls from visitors--seem glad of the opportunity
for a pleasant chat and a bit of news from the outside world. They show
us through their exquisitely neat establishment, where, in the culinary
department, a crone who is deaf and rather childish approaches us
with such strong evidence of delight, that we expect at least to be
embraced; but a sign from the Superior relieves us from the impending
demonstration.

At sunset, as we stroll along the road, three pretty little girls
who are driving home a flock of geese tempt us to air our French a
little, and a lively conversation ensues, causing their black eyes
to sparkle and their white teeth to flash bewitchingly. One of the
children explains why one of the awkward birds wears a clumsy triangular
collar of wood, with a stake apparently driven through its throat,
"to prevent it from going through the fences;" and when one of the
strangers, imitating the waddling gait of the creatures, improvises,--

  Bon soir, Madame Oie, Veux tu le blé? Il est à toi!

such a shout of merry laughter is heard as one might willingly go a long
way to listen to. When one gives her name, "Thérese _le Blanc_", our
query, "Votre père, est il _la Notaire_?" strange to say, puzzles her;
but she probably is not familiar with a certain famous poem, although
our hostess and her daughters have perused it.

As time passes, and she feels better acquainted and at ease with us,
Madame M.'s younger daughter amuses us by showing some mischievous
tendency; and we conclude she is something of "a tease". In the most
artless manner, and without intentional familiarity, she slides her arm
through Octavia's in a confidential manner and imparts some important
information "dans l'oreille". What is it? Well, remember it is
_whispered_; and now _don't_ go and tell! It is that there _is_ a swain
who is Evangeline's special devoted; and the quick blush which rises
most becomingly on that damsel's cheek speaks for itself. We have seen
for ourselves how

  "Many a youth, as he knelt in the church and opened his missal, fixed
  his eyes upon her,"

and as our eyes turn to the lovely view of the Bay with its sheltering
highlands we can readily imagine how, on just such evenings as this,--

  "apart, in the twilight gloom of a window's embrasure,
  Sat the lovers, and whispered together, beholding the moon rise
  Over the pallid sea,"

while

  "Silently one by one, in the infinite meadows of heaven,
  Blossom the lovely stars, the forget-me-nots of the angels."

We do not ask if the lover's name is "Gabriel", but earnestly wish her
a happier lot than that of the sad heroine of Grand Pré's story.

The sun sinks behind the hills which bound lovely St. Mary's Bay, and
we plainly see the two curious openings known as the Grand Passage and
Petit Passage, through which the fishermen sail when conveying their
cargoes to St. John. The Petit Passage is one mile wide; and passing
through this deep strait the hardy fishermen can, in favorable weather,
cross to St John in eight to ten hours. These highlands across the Bay,
known as Digby Neck and Long Island, are a continuation of the range of
mountains terminating in Blomidon on the Minas Basin, and so singularly
cut away to make entrance to Annapolis Basin, at St. George's Channel,
vulgarly known as Digby Gut.

When De Monts and his party were ready to continue their cruise from
this sheltered haven, behold! one of their company--a priest--was
missing; and though they waited several days, making signals and firing
guns, such sounds were drowned by the roar of the surf, and never
reached the ears of the poor man lost in the woods. At last, supposing
that the wanderer had fallen a prey to wild animals, the explorers
sailed away, and, finding the entrance to Annapolis Basin, began to
make preparation for colonizing at Port Royal.

Sixteen days after the disappearance of the priest, some of De Monts'
men returning to this Bay to examine the minerals more thoroughly, were
attracted by a signal fluttering on the shore, and, hurrying to land,
there found the poor priest, emaciated and exhausted. What strange
sensations the distracted wanderer must have experienced in these forest
wilds, with starvation staring him in the face! No charms did _he_ see
in this scene which now delights us; and doubtless, with Selkirk, would
have exclaimed, "Better dwell in the midst of alarms, than to live in
this beautiful place."

This strange wild coast and the Cod Banks of Newfoundland were known to
and visited by foreign fishermen at a very early date. "The Basques,
that primeval people, older than history," frequented these shores; and
it is supposed that such fisheries existed even before the voyage of
Cabot (1497). There is strong evidence of it in 1504; while in 1527
fourteen fishing vessels--Norman, Portuguese, and Breton--were seen at
one time in the Bay of Fundy, near the present site of St. John.

When we question our hostess as to the species of finny tribes found in
these waters, she mentions menhaden, mackerel, alewives, herring, etc;
and, proud of her English, concludes her enumeration with, "Dat is de
most only feesh dey kotch here."

Another drive of many miles along the shore brings us to the
neighborhood of the very jumping off place of the Scotian peninsula,
with novel sights to attract the attention _en route_. Now and then a
barn with thatched roof; here a battered boat overturned to make Piggy
and family a habitation; there heavy and lumbering _three_ wheeled
carts, with the third rotator placed between the shafts, so the poor ox
who draws the queer vehicle hasn't much room to spare.

Huge loads of hay pass us, and other large farm wagons, drawn invariably
by handsome oxen. The ox-yokes are a constant marvel to us; for,
divested of the bows, they are fastened with leather straps to the bases
of the poor creatures' horns. Evidently there is no "S. P. C. A." here;
and we cannot convince those with whom we converse on the subject that
the poor animals would pull better by their shoulders than by their
heads. At several places we see the clumsiest windmills for sawing wood;
not after the fashion of the picturesque buildings which Don Quixote so
valiantly opposed, but a heavy frame work or scaffolding about twelve
feet in height. To this is attached a wheel of heaviest plank with five
fans, each one shaped like the arm of a Greek cross, and the whole so
ponderous we are confident that nothing less than a hurricane could
make it revolve.

Here is a house entirely covered with diamond shaped shingles, having
also double and triple windows, which are long, narrow, and pointed at
the top, yet not suggestive of the gothic.

Next we pass a point where an old post inn once stood, and where the
curiously curved, twisted, and strangely complicated iron frame which
once held the swinging sign still remains.

Many a bleak ride did that mounted carrier have, no doubt, in days of
yore; and we can imagine him saying:--

  "The night is late, I dare not wait, the winds begin to blow,
  And ere I gain the rocky plain there'll be a storm, I know!"

At our final halting place all is bustle, in preparation for a two days'
fête, which commences next day; nevertheless, had we been princes of the
realm, we could not have been shown truer hospitality. Père Basil Armand
himself waits upon us, while his wife is cooking dainties for the coming
festival; and the pretty Monica, giving up her neat apartment to one of
our party, lodges at a neighbor's.

Monsieur R., though seventy-eight years of age, retains all his
faculties perfectly, is straight as an Indian, his luxuriant hair
unstreaked with gray, and he is over six feet in height. He reminds us
of the description of Benedict Bellefontaine:--

  "Stalwart and stately in form was the man of seventy winters,
  Hearty and hale was he, an oak that is covered with snow flakes,"

but our host is even a finer specimen of vigorous age. Then his books--
for he is collector of customs, a post which he has held for twenty-five
years--would amaze many a younger clerk or scribe; and he is amused, but
apparently gratified, when we ask for his autograph, which he obligingly
writes for each in a firm, clear, and fine hand. He says of the people
of this settlement, that they generally speak patois, though many, like
himself, can speak pure French; that they are faithful and true hearted,
industrious and thrifty. He adds: "We are not rich, we are not poor,
but we are happy and contented."

During the fearful scenes of 1793 an amiable priest of great culture, a
man noble in character, as by birth, fled from the horrors of the French
Revolution, and found among this simple, childlike people a peaceful
haven and happy home. This earnest man, Abbé Ségoigne, devoted himself
in everyway to their good, governing them wisely and well, and might
truly have said, in the words of Father Felician,--

  "I labored among you and taught you, not in word alone but in deed."

Many years he resided here. His memory is now venerated almost as that
of a saint, and we are of course greatly interested when Monsieur R.
brings out, with just pride, his greatest treasure,--a cumbersome and
quaint old volume which was once the property of the good priest.

There is a strong feeling of brotherhood, like the Scottish clanship,
among the people; and the lands of parents are divided and subdivided,
so the children at marriage may each receive a portion as dower, and
"settle down" near their childhood's home; consequently the farms are
"long drawn out", extending sometimes in very narrow strips for a mile
or more inland.

Abbé Raynal writes most poetically, although not absolutely in rhyme, of
this gentle brotherhood, "where every misfortune was relieved before it
could be felt, without ostentation on the one hand and without meanness
on the other. Whatever slight differences arose from time to time among
them were amicably adjusted by their elders."

Our driver says "étwelles" for _étoiles_, "fret" for _froid_, "si" for
_oui_, etc.; the dancing crests of the waves he calls "chapeaux blancs",
which is similar to our appellation, and also speaks of "un bon _coop_
de thé", showing that an English word is occasionally adopted, though
hardly recognizable in their peculiar phraseology.

One pleasant acquaintance, Dr. R, who lived here several years after he
"came out" from England, tells us that the mackerouse, a wild duck, is
found here; and, as it subsists upon fish, the people are allowed to eat
that bird on Fridays. He also says that the pigs wade out into the mud
at low tide to root for clams; while the crows, following in their
tracks, steal the coveted shell fish from under the very noses of the
swine. Of the remarkably long nasal appendages of this peculiar porcine
species he adds, "They do say that they'll root under a fence and steal
potatoes from the third row!"

In this locality we hear Yarmouth spoken of as if it were a port equal
to New York in importance, and so it doubtless seems to these simple
un-traveled people. In reality it is a prosperous maritime town owning
one hundred and thirty thousand tons of shipping, and is a mildly
picturesque place when the tide is high.

The Indian name appropriately signifies "end of the land," and one might
naturally suppose, when arriving there, that he had reached "that famous
fabled country, 'away down east';" though, should he continue his
travels to Labrador, that mythical region would still lure him on. The
inhabitants are mainly seafaring men,--many of the captains of Cape Ann
fishing fleets came from here originally,--and they call the Atlantic
from Cape Ann to Yarmouth all Bay of Fundy, though that is "rather
stretching it."

It was near here that De Monts made his first landing and caught a
nightingale (May 16, 1604). Not far beyond, about the shores of Argyle
Bay, a great many "French Neutrals" found refuge in 1755 (though an
English ship tried to rout them); and they were hunted like wild
animals about here for two or three years after.

We conclude that the hamlets on the upper part of St. Mary's Bay are
most interesting, and that it is hardly worth while to continue down
the coast unless one desires to take steamer from this port to Boston.

In our strolls about the village, we come to a point on the shore where
a boy has a quantity of fine large lobsters which he has just taken from
the trap; and when one of our party asks for what price he will sell
some, the answer--"One cent each"--is so astounding that the query is
repeated, so we may be convinced that we have heard aright. Pere Basil
is evidently surprised at our taste when he sees us returning with our
purchases, as he remarks, "We don't think much of those at this time of
year;" from which we infer that at some seasons they have to depend so
much upon fish, lobsters, etc., that they become weary of them.

There is such Gallic atmosphere about this place (and trip) that Octavia
is infected, and perpetrates doggerel on a postal, which is to be mailed
from the "land's end" to acquaint foreign relatives with our advent in
a foreign country also!--

  Tout est "0. K."
  Je suis arivée
  Dans ce joli pays,
  Avec bonne santé,
  Mais bien fatiguée.
  Adieu. E. B. C.
  (O quelle atrocité!
  Mais je n'ai ni grammaire
  Ni dictionnaire français.)

  "Pleasantly rose next morn the sun,"

and though we are up and out betimes,--

  "Life had long been astir in the village, and clamorous labor
  Knocked with its hundred hands at the golden gate of the morning.
  Now from the country around, from the farms and the neighboring
  hamlets,
  Came in their holiday dresses the blithe Acadian peasants.
  Many a glad good morrow and jocund laugh from the young folk
  Made the bright air brighter, as up from the numerous meadows,
  Group after group appeared, and joined or passed on the highway.
  Long ere noon, in the village all sounds of labor were silenced.
  Thronged were the streets with people; and noisy groups at the house
  doors
  Sat in the cheerful sun, and rejoiced and gossiped together.
  Every house was an inn, where all were welcomed and feasted,
  For with this simple people, who lived like brothers together,
  All things were held in common, and what one had was another's."

Père Basil is surprised to find that we have not come especially to
attend the festival, of which we had not heard until our arrival,
though he evidently thinks the fame of their elaborate preparations has
traveled far and wide. While we are waiting for the vehicles which are
to convey us to the railroad station (a long drive inland) many most
picturesque groups pass the door; some walking, some riding on ox-carts,
and all carrying flowers, pyramidal and gorgeously ornamented cakes, or
curious implements for games, totally unknown to us moderns! Our host
has a pleasant greeting for all, and receives cordial reply, and
sometimes merry jest and repartee from the happy revelers.

Much to our delight, our route to the station passes the grounds where
the fête is held; and here we see booths of boughs, a revolving swing
(which they call a "galance"), fluttering flags, and gay banners.

Merry groups of young people are engaged in games or dances, while the
elders are gossiping, or look on approvingly, and the air is filled with
lively music. Can it be that the melodies which we hear are the famous
old ones, "Toes les Bourgeois de Charters" and "Le Carillon de Dunker"?
It would hardly surprise us, as this quaint place seems a century or so
behind the times.

We wish we could stop for an hour or two to watch them; but trains wait
for no man, and we must return to Digby and there take steamer for St.
John.

That short passage of twelve leagues has been our bugbear for some days,
as travelers whom we met at Annapolis pictured its horrors so vividly,
representing its atrocities as exceeding those of the notorious English
Channel. Yet we glide as smoothly through the eddies and whirlpools of
the beautiful Gap as a Sound steamer passes through Hell Gate. This
remarkable passage way is two miles in length; the mountains rise on
either hand to the height of five hundred and sixty and six hundred and
ten feet, the tide between rushing at the rate of five knots an hour.
We note gray, water worn rocks at the sides, resembling pumice in
appearance, though of course very much harder stone, and evidently of
similar formation to that of the ovens at Mt. Desert. And now we sweep
quietly out into the dreaded Bay of Fundy, the water of which rests in
such oily quietude as even Long Island Sound rarely shows. On this hazy,
lazy, sunny afternoon not a swell is perceptible (unless some among the
passengers might be designated by that title); and after four and a half
hours of most dreamy navigation, we enter the harbor of St. John, where
the many tinted signal lights are reflected in the black water, and a
forest fire on a distant hill throws a lurid light over the scene.

When the tide turns, there can be seen frequently far out in the Bay a
distinct line in the water,--a line as sharply defined as that between
the Arve and Rhone at their junction near Geneva. It is when wind and
tide are at variance that the roughest water is encountered; and they
say that if one would avoid an unpleasant game of pitch and toss, the
passage across should not be attempted during or immediately after a
blow from the northwest or southeast. So make a note of that! Old salts
at Annapolis told us that the water of the Bay "gets up" suddenly, but
also quiets down soon, and that after a windless night one might be
reasonably certain of a comfortable trip across.

Having supposed that St. John had lost half its charm and quaintness
since the fire, we are surprised to find so much of interest when we
are out at the "top of the morning" next day, and are reluctant to
leave; but here the Octave disintegrates, scatters to finish the season
elsewhere; and each member, on arrival at home, probably invests in
reams of paper and quarts of ink, setting to work to tell his friends
all about it, and where "they must surely go next summer!"



"L'ISLE DES MONTS DESERTS."


(A LETTER BY THE WAY.)


"Beautiful Isle of the Sea!"

When we said, "Let us go to Mt. Desert," Joe gave us Punch's advice on
marriage: "Don't!" Sue said. "It has lost half its charms by becoming so
fashionable;" and Hal added, as an unanswerable argument, "You'll not be
able to get enough to eat." As to his veracity on this subject we cannot
vouch, though we can testify to his voracity, and mischievously throw a
quotation at him:--

  "The turnpike to men's hearts, I find,
  Lies through their mouths, or I mistake mankind."

Despite such discouragements, being naturally obstinate, go we do; and
here we are in the most refreshingly primitive and unfashionable abiding
place, the domicile commanding a view which cannot be equaled by any
public house on the island. From the piazzas and our windows the eye
never tires of gazing on the beautiful bay with its numerous
islands,--a charming picture, with the blue and symmetrical range of
Gouldsboro' hills for background. From a point not far back of the
house, the eye ranges from the head of Frenchman's Bay out to the broad
ocean; while a retrospective view takes in the wild mountainous region
of the interior of this lovely isle.

We arrive at a fortunate time. For a long while previous Nature had
persistently enveloped her face in a veil, giving an air of mystery
which the summer guests did not appreciate. The skipper of the yacht
which conveys us when we circumnavigate the island tells us "there is a
fog factory near by," a statement which, for a few days, we are inclined
to credit. The nabobs of Newport, the Sybarites of Nahant, and even the
commonplace rusticators at other shore resorts have been served in the
same manner, however; so we sympathize with them fully, and with them
exult at the final dissolution of the vapors, as the gray curtain
gradually lifts and rolls away, its edge all jagged as if torn by the
lance-like tips of fir and spruce trees as it swept over them. These
noble hills are densely wooded, but not with the forest giants one sees
among the White Mountains; and when I express my surprise thereat, I am
told that fifty or sixty years ago the greater part of the island was
denuded by fire, so that remains of the primeval forest can only be
found in distant spots not easily accessible. Notices are now posted in
the woods at various points, by which "visitors are earnestly requested
to extinguish all fires which they may light, and not to strip the bark
from the birches."

In our inland excursions the rugged mountains, with their storm scarred,
rocky summits, wild ravines, and forest embedded bases, so constantly
suggest the grand scenery of New Hampshire that we can hardly realize
that we are anywhere near the sea. Then, on a sudden turn of the road,
a broad stretch of ocean--blue, sparkling, and sail dotted, framed in
graceful birches, feathery larches, and dark pines--comes upon us as a
surprise.

The peculiar vehicle which is here known as a "buckboard" we find a
comfortable conveyance, with a motion which seems a combination of
see-saw and baby-jumper. The "body" is composed of four long boards laid
side by side, supported only at the extreme ends where they are hung
over the axles. The seats are in the middle. They are neither elegant
nor graceful, but easy, "springy" vehicles, which, having neither sides
nor top covers, give unimpeded views, and are excellent for sight
seeing, though not precisely the thing for rainy weather.

Canoeing is a favorite amusement; and in the management of these light
and graceful boats many of the summer guests become quite expert. The
motion suggests that of a gondola, A catamaran scoots about the harbor
among the islands; tiny steamers, sailing craft of all kinds, are seen;
and sometimes United States training ships sail majestically into the
bay and drop anchor, giving a finishing touch to the picture.

Skippers are very cautious, and frequently will not allow their canoes
or other boats to go out, although it may appear perfectly safe to the
uninitiated. Visitors rarely have any idea what sudden "flaws" and gusts
of air are caused by the position of and openings between the mountains;
and when these, as well as the tidal swell and currents of the ocean
about the shore, have to be studied, navigation becomes scientific.

The arrival of the steamer is the great event of the day; and on Sunday,
after morning service, the butterflies of fashion flit to the pier to
see the landing of passengers. It is rather embarrassing for weary
travelers to be obliged to "run the gauntlet" as they pass through the
gay throng, for every one stares with all his might. This does not seem
to be considered rude here, and every one is met by a "battery of eyes;"
I presume because each person expects, if he remain here through the
season, to meet every one whom he ever knew.

The yachting and tennis costumes which are worn here would certainly
cause many of the sober residents of the Quaker City to open their eyes
wide with horror,--if they were able to open them, and were not blinded
by the first glance. One divinity, in scarlet and white striped awning
cloth, awe christen the "mint stick". And _such_ hats!--each so
placed upon the head that, however huge, it is utterly useless as a
shade; but as effect is what all are striving for, any other
consideration is of no importance whatever. Such attire would be hooted
at in some places; and we wonder that it does not strike old settlers
breathless with amazement at the extravagances and follies of "these
city folks". Jim quotes, "Any color so it's red," when surveying a
brilliantly attired company at this place, as that aggressive hue
prevails. These fantastic costumes are frequently seen in the mornings
on the shore, where the wearers are engaged in an amusement here known
as "rocking". This consists in lounging on the rocks with interesting
youths, who, arrayed in picturesque yachting or tennis suits, pose
artistically, and, beneath the shade of scarlet or Japanese umbrellas,
talk of the weather, of course. Elsewhere this would be known as
flirting.

We do not approve of the names of some of the public houses, and wonder
that they could not have chosen more suggestive titles. The "Hotel des
Isles" has a more suitable and appropriate cognomen,--if they would
spell it correctly, which they invariably do not. This name is borne by
descendants of the old French settlers, but is now, sad to tell,
pronounced by their contemporaries "De Sizzle". We call our house
Pleasant Haven, or Restful Retreat, though it appears under a different
title in the guide book. It would never do to tell what its name "really
and truly" is, lest you should think I have been engaged to "puff" it.
We have delicious bread and excellent fare; and, though this is plain,
of course, all is temptingly served, and everything neat and nice
enough for any one.

Our rooms are extremely plain, but neat. Closets are unknown; but on
hooks along the wall on one side of the apartment we hang our garments,
protecting them with chintz curtains which we brought for the purpose.
A resident of Fifth Avenue occupies the garret rooms above, having
selected them from choice; and, expatiating on their advantages in
quiet, air, and views, becomes an Attic Philosopher.

Occasionally we get out our fineries, and go to some "hop" or
entertainment in the village, but return better satisfied with our
present home; and, snapping our fingers at Mrs. Grundy, do not envy any
of her votaries. If our advice were asked, we should say: "Come to one
of the smaller hostelries, like this, where you can be independent and
comfortable; and bring half worn winter garments, with boots ditto, to
be prepared for tramping and excursions."

The excursions which can be taken I will not enumerate; will merely
state that the ascent of Green Mountain, in clear weather, and the drive
to Great Head are most satisfactory. On our way to the latter point we
stop at Anemone Cave, where we enjoy an impromptu concert by members of
Philadelphia glee clubs, the fine voices and beautiful harmonies being
enhanced by the dark arch of rock and the ceaseless music of the surf,
which forms a grand accompaniment.

The view from Green Mountain is quite unique, the eye traversing ocean
and land for forty miles in any direction; following the singularly
serrated coast of Maine, the course of Somes Sound,--that remarkable
inlet from the sea which almost divides the island,--and tracing the
waving line of far distant mountain ranges. The mainland is curiously
cut into long rocky points and ragged peninsulas, from which the islands
seem to have broken off and drifted out to sea. From this height
(fifteen hundred and thirty-five feet) the ocean seems placid and
smooth,--much less awe-inspiring than from the shore, where the surges
roll in with such tremendous power, as if endeavoring to crush the
towering cliffs which oppose them. The clustering buildings of Bar
Harbor appear like a child's playthings, or Nuremberg toys; the
miniature vessels like sea gulls just alighted; the white tents of the
Indian encampment ludicrously suggest a laundry with big "wash" hung out
to dry; and the whole scene looks as if viewed through the large end of
an opera glass. It is a peaceful and beautiful picture for memory to
treasure and look back upon with delight.

At Fernald's Point, at the base of Flying Mountain, two miles north of
Southwest Harbor, is the supposed location of the French settlement,
which was founded by a party of priests and colonists sent out from
France to Port Royal (now Annapolis, Nova Scotia), who, losing their way
in fog, landed here. The peaceful little community, after only a few
weeks' occupancy, were routed by that grasping individual, Argall, the
deputy governor of Virginia, who was detested by his own colonists for
his tyranny and rapacity. That person, not content with the domains
which his position entitled him to govern, cruised along the Atlantic
coast, making many such incursions among the colonists. In this case,
after destroying the buildings, he cruelly set adrift in an open boat
fifteen of the poor, harmless people, who, after suffering great
hardships, were picked up by a trading vessel and conveyed to St. Malo.
We wonder that investigations have not been made ere this at this spot,
as it seems probable that old implements and objects of interest might
be brought to light. How we wish we were members of the Maine Historical
Society, and by that body empowered to superintend excavations at the
site of a colony which was in existence (1613) seven years before the
landing of the Pilgrims!

Samuel de Champlain, friend, associate, and pilot of De Monts in the
latter's investigations of his possessions in Acadia (in 1604), was
sponsor of this island which has since become so famous, of which he
speaks as "La grande Isle des Monts Deserts;" and by the early Lord of
the Realm the whole of Frenchman's Bay was also called La Havre du Saint
Sauveur. That wicked Jim says that the _Indian_ name of the island must
suggest itself to some travelers on their way here, unless they come by
the land route.

There are thirty-five guests in our house, who form a pleasant company;
and though of course there is great diversity of taste and character
shown among them, they form a harmonious assembly. In the evenings we
have "sings", readings, games, and charades, frequently growing
hilarious. Sedate professors, dignified divines, and learned writers
enter into these sports with the zest of schoolboys on a holiday. Some
of these games may be new; and that others may derive amusement for
similar occasions, I will describe two of them. In one, called
Comparison, the company seat themselves in a circle. Each one whispers
to his right hand neighbor the name of a person (known to the company);
to the one at his left, the name of an object. Then each in turn gives
aloud the name which his neighbor whispered to him, and tells why he or
she resembles the object, making the comparison complimentary or
otherwise. The uncomplimentary comparisons are generally the most
laughable, and of course all understand that 't is "all for fun", so no
one takes any offence. For instance: "Mr. J. resembles the _harbor bar_,
or did this morning, because there was a heavy swell rolling over him;"
the company understanding this as an allusion to a frolicsome tussle
which Mr. J. had with the beau of the house. A rhyming game also affords
much amusement. One person gives his neighbor a list of words,--the
words ending the lines of a sonnet or part of a poem,--and the person
receiving the list must fill in the lines, bringing in the words given,
in proper order, at the ends of the lines. In the following instance
the words italicized are the ones which the player received from his
neighbor; in this case the terminal words of Longfellow's beautiful
description of a calm night by the sea will be recognized, although the
word "ocean" was inadvertently substituted for "organ":--

  "All the long white beach is _silent_
  As a beach should ever _be_,
  While the sea gulls stand and _listen_
  To the moaning of the _sea_,
  All the solemn oysters _gather_,
  Gazing upward to the _sky_,
  While a lobster breaks the _silence_,
  Crooning low his _litany_
  Little shrimps in their dark _caverns_,
  Eating supper all _alone_,
  Looking out upon the ocean,
  Whispering in an _undertone_
  'Tis sad and lonely by these _beaches_,
  Shall we ne'er go _beyond_?'
  All the barnacles, _uprising_,
  'Never,' tearfully _respond_."

As we are by the sea, nautical rhymes seem to turn out naturally. The
writer of this remarkable effusion is evidently not an evolutionist,
though he may think there are some "queer fish" among the heterogeneous
inhabitants of this island.

At last the day comes when we must turn away from these lovely scenes;
and it is with regret, and many a backward look, that we are conveyed
to the Rockland boat. That vessel pursues a circuitous route along the
coast, among the picturesque islands; the trip suggesting quite forcibly
the St. Lawrence with its Thousand Isles, as old Neptune is fortunately
in amiable mood, and shows a smiling countenance. So we have no grudge
to lay up against him, and only pictures tinged with _couleur-de-rose_
to carry away with us.



SEA-SIDE AMUSEMENT IN THE "CITY OF SOLES".


As it is our custom to come to these New England shores every summer, in
order, as Jim says, to get salted so that we may keep well through the
winter (by which you need not infer that we "get into a pickle"), we
commence the process at this place, before proceeding to more Northerly
points.

As the "dry spell" has made the roads so dusty that there is little
pleasure in driving, and our horses are at present in the stables of our
_Chateaux-en-Espagne_, and consequently not available this warm evening,
we gather on the porch to be entertained by the learned converse of the
professors, until an approaching storm drives us in-doors. Within the
"shooting box", as the young man who has traveled christens the house,--
thinking that an appropriate title for a domicile where so many members
of the Hunt family are collected,--there is a motley assembly, as they
gather around the sitting room table. There are Portuguese,
Michiganders, Pennites, Illinoisyones, Bangorillas, and other specimens
of natural history such as would have puzzled Agassiz himself; and the
question arises, "What shall we do to amuse ourselves this rainy
evening?" But "Pat", the engineer, oiler of the domestic machinery of
the establishment, and keeper of this menagerie, seems overcome with
fatigue; the Astronomer is eclipsed in a corner; the professors are
absorbed in sines and co-sines; the Fisherman nods over his paper;
Grandma knits her brows and the stocking; Elsie is deep in a book; and
no one displays any special interest in the matter until pencils and
paper are distributed for the game of Crambo. The _modus operandi_ of
that most wise and learned game is as follows: Four slips of paper are
given each person, on one of which he is requested to write a question,
and on each of the other scraps a word. These are then shuffled, and all
in turn draw. And now there is great commotion, for each participant is
expected to answer his question in rhyme, and to bring the three words
which he has drawn, into his answer, also. Such a chorus of "Oh dears",
and such dismayed faces! The student proposes to procure the coffee mill
to assist him in grinding out his "pome"; the tennis player wishes she
had a hatchet to chop up a long word which has fallen to her lot, so
that she can put it in proper metre; but Mr. Short (6 ft. 2 in.), with
watch in hand, calls "Time", and then "Silence", as pencils race over
papers as if on a wager. Ten minutes is the brief space allotted for the
production of the wondrous effusions; and when Mr. S. announces, "Time's
up", the hat is again full; and one says, with a sigh of relief, "There,
I never made two lines rhyme in my life before;" another modestly
remarks, "You needn't think we are verdant because we are in Green--"
but the warning finger of the Philosopher is raised, and Pat, the
reader, begins, emphasizing the words drawn as he reads:--

  "Why so much quarrelling about Religion!
  It's as plain as string _beans_
  That from this very means
  The world is not right,
  If I had but clear sight
  I might _hope_ ere this night
  Is _beginning_ to wane
  The thing to explain.
  But, lacking the wit,
  I must e'en submit
  This doggerel rhyme
  And hope 't is in time."

"Oh! oh!" exclaimed the "small specimen" (aged ten), "that's Grandma's;
I heard her say she 'knows beans', 'cause she is a Yankee;" but the S.
S. subsides on hearing the next paper read, and shows so plainly that
she "wishes herself further" that it is not difficult to guess the
author:--

  "What's quicker than lightning?
  A _Turkey_ or a squirrel
  Can 'cut' like a _knife_
  But I never saw a creature rash
  Like a _deer_ in all my life."

"Good for Ten-year-old!" exclaim the chorus; and the S. S., brightening
up, concludes she'll try it again sometime. Next comes the question:--

  "Where do cabbages come from?
  My will is good, and I _propose_
  To tell you all I can
  In this dry time a garden hose
  Must come into the plan
  First plant the seed, and in due course
  Will little shoots appear,
  When each from other has _divorce_
  They'll flourish, it is clear.
  If this rhyme is worth preserving,
  With _mucilage_ it may be fixed
  On any wall deserving
  Such wit and wisdom mixed."

As it is well known that the natives of the Emerald Isle have a
predilection for cabbages, it is unanimously decided that none but Pat
could have perpetrated this; so Pat grins, suggests that a bill poster
be secured at once, and proceeds:--

  "How would you like to be a cat?
  In _Timbuctoo_ each stern ascetic,
  Though blind to folly as a bat,
  Revels in love _peripatetic_
  Which makes him nimble as a cat
  But though I'm fond of such agility,
  I better like the busy bees,
  For they display so much ability
  They 'mind one of the _Portuguese_."

At this implied compliment to his people, the black eyes of the foreign
student flash approval; and the Mathematician speaks up, saying, "That
is the Philosopher, sure, and proves the truth of the saying, 'A little
nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men.'" The Philosopher
smiles benignantly, but does not deny the charge; and the reader
continues:--

  "What do you think of the Ormthorhynchus?
  My brain's in a 'muss'
  From thinking of this '_cuss_'
  (Excuse me for using such a word).
  If it lived at _Nahant_
  With this heat it would pant,
  For surely't is a curious bird.
  You may think me a 'muff',
  And declare I talk stuff,
  But I hope you'll not doubt my word.
  For though out in all weathers
  Its coat's not of feathers
  But of fur,--at least so I've heard.
  But 'by this _illumination_'
  (Kant's ratiocination?)
  'I don't see it,' though it may seem quite absurd."

The company, strange to say, hit upon Elsie for this, and are evidently
surprised that one so given up to pomps and vanities should display such
knowledge of natural history; but they evidently suspect her of shining
by reflected light, as she sits next to the Philosopher; and I heard
her ask him a question about this animal with the jaw-breaking name. By
this time the party have become so brilliant, having polished each other
up as by diamond cutters' wheels, that it is "moved and seconded" that
we "try again". The laughter has brought down the Chemist from the
laboratory, the Fisherman from his den; besides rousing the Astronomer,
who scintillates in the corner to such a degree that all others expect
to be totally eclipsed. This time the Fisherman, who is also an amateur
gardener and farmer on a small scale, draws an appropriate question, in
regard to which he enlightens us as follows; and what he says must be
true, as we know he has had experience with pigs and hens:--

  "Which knows most, a pig or a hen?
  'Tis hard to tell in rustic _rhyme_
  What pigs or hens may know.
  A cabbage-head in olden time
  Sure knew enough to grow.
  If _Balm_ and corn to them were thrown
  By _parsimonious_ Bill
  I think the fact would then be shown,
  For Piggy'd eat his fill."

Next comes the Chemist with the question:--

  "Do you like peanuts?
  Peanuts are _double_,
  And so is the trouble
  Involved in _effort_
  To answer it.
  Hand over a few,
  And see if I do
  Not like peanuts
  Better than _Sanskrit_"

Any one who had heard the Chemist warbling,--

  "He who hath good peanuts and gives his neighbor none,
  He sha'n't have any of my peanuts when his peanuts are gone,"

would not have doubted this.

The Philosopher next airs his learning in the following:--

  "What do you admire in a fool?
  Water has such _combustibility_
  That one may rightfully admire
  The happy lack of wise ability
  Which never rivers sets on fire.
  _Truth_ needs no _recapitulation_
  To make what's simple plainer still.
  Folly courts our admiration
  Wherever Fashion has her will."

Part of this is so abstruse that I fear the company do not fully
appreciate it; so the next is quite startling; and after hearing it we
learn, the cause of the Astronomer's silent merriment in the corner, and
rejoice that Dr. Holmes's experience in "writing as funny as he could"
has proved a warning to this individual:--

  "What is stronger than an onion?
  Oh, _scissors_! on a summer night
  To tax a fat _republican_
  In thinking out with all his might
  Some mightier thing than on-i-on.
  Garlic, maybe's not strong enough
  Well, I'll exert my '_spunk_'
  So here you have it, 'in the rough,'--
  A pole-cat, alias s----k."

The Oleaginous Personage comes next with the question, "Do you like
Crambo?" which was answered, rather ambiguously, thus:--

  "If our last lingo was a _specimen_
  Of this most wise and learned game,
  'Tis sure that thus not many men
  Would long be known to fame.
  Any of you as well as I
  Would knock our type all into _Pi_,
  If _ghost_, or man, or printer's devil
  Should show us up for good or evil."

Here the sedate and dignified Elsie gives her opinion of a summer
recreation after this fashion:--

  "Are you fond of fishing?
  A foolish amusement, it seems to me,
  To be rocking about on the briny sea
  Watching for bites 'neath a broiling sun,
  (Mosquitoes will give you 'em when day is done)
  For my part I'd rather be left in _peace_
  To read of travels in sunny Greece
  Varied by poem on 'Pleasures of _Hope_',--
  Whate'er my employment I shall not mope--
  But it proves great sport for cousin _Bill_.
  (He's a youth just starting up Life's hill)
  But should he as old as I become
  He would conclude that 't is all a 'hum'."

Where a person generally considered "proper" became familiar with slang
I cannot imagine, but I make no remarks. Owing to the absence of two
members of the household, who, having been caught out in the shower, are
probably calculating the specific gravity of rain drops and their effect
on new straw hats, we have doubtless been deprived of more poems of
surprising depth and brilliancy. And, from regard for the excessive
modesty of other participants in the game, I suppress many compositions
of rare merit which were brought out this stormy evening. This letter is
merely to acquaint you with an important fact, which is as follows. As
Dr. Holmes has informed you with regard to the "Asylum for Decayed
Punsters," be it known hereby that we have here started a rival
institution,--a school for poets; so when you wish to secure the
services of any of the graduates, you may know where to apply. And, the
reason why the game of Crambo is like night is, because it is quiet in
the middle and noisy at both ends.





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