Open Collections

BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

Rambles in the United States and Canada during the year 1845, with a short account of Oregon [James, Thomas Horton]; Rubio 1846

Item Metadata


JSON: bcbooks-1.0222781.json
JSON-LD: bcbooks-1.0222781-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): bcbooks-1.0222781-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: bcbooks-1.0222781-rdf.json
Turtle: bcbooks-1.0222781-turtle.txt
N-Triples: bcbooks-1.0222781-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: bcbooks-1.0222781-source.json
Full Text

Full Text

Array       My dear Sir,
I had proposed during a late trip to New
York to write you a series of letters, descriptive of the United States, and the impressions
made upon my mind during a few months' travelling through that country. But, somehow or
other, I never felt in the vein, and therefore
preferred the leisure of the voyage home, and
such accommodations as are to be met with in a
private cabin, to give you these Rambles all of a
heap, and thus save you, at least, the expense of
foreign postage.
Hoping you will make allowance for the tossing
of a ship, and not consider the book too curiously,
but rather as the plain sentiments of a practical
man, I remain,
My dear Sir,
Your ever obliged friend,
Eubio. .
Paris, October, 1845.  Introductory—Nature in America Great and Grand—Men contemptible—Pulpit Denunciation—American Manners and Morals
— Country not adapted for Farm Emigrants—Union not Permanent—Weakness of the Executive—Opinions of Poreigners—
Dickens and Trollope—Horrid Climate of the States—Mortality
—474 Deaths in New York weekly—Superiority of England
New York—Arrival and Pilot—Pilots all Teetotallers — Pilots'
Newspapers—Swampy Coast—Feeling of Disappointment—Erroneous Notions of Englishmen respecting American Freedom—
American Bombast—Landing at Puddle Dock—No Lodgings—
New York Filth—The Port—No Names to the Streets—Fires
every Night—Boarding-Houses—Nothing eatable or drinkable
in them—Americans adulterate everything—Eat like Wolves
—Men have no Shoulders, Females no Bosoms—Ladies far from
Pretty—No old People to be seen—Steam-Boats, fifteen make a
Mile—People all Water-Drinkers—Clergy not given to Wine—
All Teetotallers—No Pledge, no Congregation, Ardent Spirits
publicly Denounced by Six Presidents     ....
Poor Shops—Fire-Engines—Gratuitous System does not answer-
River Hudson—Bottle of Port charged 32s. 6d.—American Markets bad—King of Alleghania—Fruit and Vegetables scarce—
Punch and Mrs Caudle—Trade in Cheap Publications—Moving
the Mansion House—Brooklyn Ferry—Freedom without Law—
Universal Suffrage does not answer—Mob Law—Polk the Great
Unknown—His roaring means nothing—Annexation of Canada
—Newspaper Press—Penny advertising   .... VI
One Church to every Three Hundred Inhabitants—Alterations in
the Book of Common Prayer—Expected Visit of Queen Victoria
to America—Nothing Permanent—All the Presidents have died
Poor—Americans an ungrateful People—De Witt Clinton and
Whitney—Salaries of Public Men—House Rent enormous—Public
Buildings—Paper Currency—Bank-note Engraving a good Business—Fountains—Packet Ships—Ships of British Colonies such as
New Brunswick—American Navy—Temperance Ships of War—
Flogging abolished in the Navy—American Boasting—Their
Geese all Swans—Few learned Men—Abundance of Ice—Ignorance—Where is Goldsmith's Auburn —Russian Climate—Speculation Mania—New Cities on Paper—Mulberries
New England — Transcendentalists—Their Doctrines—Evils of
Protecting Tariff—Probable Bankruptcy of Manufacturers—
Disasters in Steam-Boats—Their Accommodations—Detestable
Climate of the States—Cheap Board and Lodging -Hotels—Land
Bargains—Rome and Syracuse—Railway Travelling Slow and
Wearisome—Tin Roofing recommended—Rochester, Bankrupt
Millers—Falls of the Genessee—Americans a Gloomy People—
British Flag in Canada     ......
Lake Ontario—Falls of Niagara—Clifton Hotel—Heavy Shower—
Toronto and Hamilton good Towns—Lower Canada, or Canada
East, must be avoided, not adapted to English Farmers—Too
cold-—Emigrants should not stop till they reach Toronto or
Hamilton in Canada West, or Upper Canada, as it used to be
called—Superior to all other Colonies—No Failure of Crops—
Near England, and Passage cheap—Land ought to be reduced to
One Dollar per Acre, and no Credit—Few Taxes—Loyal People
—Quebec and Montreal—Large Population—Healthy and Happy
Colony—Too many Irish—Far better than any of the Newgate
Colonies of Australia—Superior to the United States, where
Englishmen cannot sell Land -Free and Popular Government
—Cattle, Horses, and Sheep—Regret at leaving Canada
Return to the States—Blackrock and Buffalo—Large Steamers—
Cheap Living—Cheap Carriage—Cheap Travelling—Penny a
Mile per First Class Trains—Town of Chicago 30,000 Inha- CONTENTS.
chapter Vii—continued. PAGB
bitants —Inland Navigation—Cleveland pretty Place—Building
without Money—Paying Wages Ditto—American Lighthouses
all Gratuitous—Speaker of the House—Propellers—Plucking
Geese—Ohio River—Frosts every Month in the Year—Fire comfortable 4th July—Cheap Coal —Disasters of English Emigrants
in Illinois—Taking in the Britishers—Better to have gone to
Canada—Road to Oregon—Peoria—Fort Madison—Prairie du
Chien—Memphis . . . . . .108
Co-operative Societies always successful.—No Drinking, no Poverty
—What are the English Clergy about?—American Temperance
Pledge — Parallelograms—Rewards for the Poor — Bankrupt
States—Go-a head Paying States—Cincinnati—Judge M'Lean—
Louisville—Falls of the Ohio—Complaints of Trade—Evansville
Blacksmith—Sickly Country—Fogs and Bogs—St Louis—Lead
and Copper—Iron Mountain — Copper Harbour — Mississippi
increases Fifteen Miles per Century in Length — Cotton 2£d.
per lb.        .......
Rush of Waters—Funerals—Widows at Fifteen—American Young
Ladies mere Dolls—Adieu to Fellow-passengers—Steam-boat
Certificates—Cheap Engineers the dearest—Paying Members of
Parliament a bad plan—Santa Fe and Oregon—American Spolia- .
tion—Three Million Slaves—If Property in Slaves were abolished
the Traffic would cease—Free Labour best—Home, sweet Home
—Monarchy preferable to Democracy—King of Mississippi—
Probable Changes—Railway through the Desert to secure Oregon
—Americans should buy our Claim for 5,000,000/.—The other
Alternative more expensive—American Policy should be Peace
—Non-interference—Wheat 16s. per Quarter—English Corn and
Cattle Laws bad     ....... 149
Crowded Boats—Frightful Climate—Neither Iowa nor Wiskonsin
recommended—Philadelphia Poor Place—Folly of High Tariffs
—Poor Manufactures — Yellow Fever — Boots and Shoes —
Wooden Clocks—Paper Mills—Soap—City of Brotherly Love the
most disturbed in the Union—Constant Assassinations—Hazardous Risks—Fire Insurance—Army and Navy—Fifty Formidable Ships—No Grog—Flowers of Rhetoric—New Post-Office
■LiwW • •••••• c
171 gyroWHBTOflCT-fgiggFJEF;, -^fil
Education—Learned Professors -National Bank impossible for
Want of Honest Men—The Voluntary Principle—Freehold Pews
—Chapel Speculations — Religious Sects Harmless—Church
turned into Post Office - His Excellency the Rev. Mr Everett,
late Minister at St James's—Mr M'Lean—Mr Marcy—Public
Lotteries—Provision for the Poor—Americans have no Music
in their Souls—Two Drunken Bishops—Conclusion
New England States : Maine—New Hampshire — Vermont—
Massachusetts—Rhode Island—Connecticut. Middle States :
New York New Jersey—Pennsylvania-Delaware. Southern
States: Maryland — District of ( olumbia—Virginia—North
Carolina - South Carolina—Georgia—Florida—Alabama —Mississippi - Louisiana. Western States : Ohio—Kentucky—Tennessee — Michigan — Indiana — Illinois—Missouri—Arkansas —
Geographical and General View op Oregon : Its Islands—
The Coast and its Harbours. The Natural Divisions op
Oregon: The Three Regions—Climate and Characteristics of
the Three Regions—Its Rivers    ..... 224 EAMBLES IN THE UNITED STATES,
chapter l
Introductory—Nature in America Great and Grand—Men contemptible—Pulpit Denunciation—American Manners and Morals
— Country not adapted for Farm Emigrants—Union not Permanent—Weakness of the Executive—Opinions of Foreigners—
Dickens and Trollope—Horrid Climate of the States—Mortality
—474 Deaths in New York weekly—Superiority of England.
Nothing can be more unlike our previously conceived notions of any country than the reality on
arrival. All the books that have ever been written
on the subject of America, from Fearon to Toque-
ville, are quite inadequate to give the reader anything more than a very vague and faint idea of the
Great Republic, as the natives delight to call it.
All that nature has done for America is great and
noble, on a magnificent and gigantic scale; her rivers,
mountains, lakes, cataracts, forests, plains, minerals,
heats, frosts, fevers, and premature deaths, are all
astounding and calculated to inspire us with awe. 2 PULPIT  DENUNCIATION.
But, on the other hand, it is not so with the inhabitants ; the men inspire us with very different
feelings from their vulgarity, hypocrisy, ignorance,
and dishonesty, together with their constant sordid
and grovelling pursuit of dollars and cents, and in
obtaining which they do not appear to be particularly successful, as there is scarce a dollar to be seen
in circulation through the whole country.
With regard to the barefaced hypocrisy and dishonesty of Americans in the eastern and middle
States, I am perfectly borne out by one of their
most clever and popular preachers, who said in one
of his most admired sermons, delivered in New
England,—| You come here, and by a listless attendance at the House of God on Sundays, and the
austere observance of the appointed fast days, you
expect to atone for all your wicked actions, wrong
thoughts, and unholy feelings in the past week—a six
days' life of meanness, deception, rottenness, and sin !"
Who knew so well as this eminent teacher and
preacher the weak points of his congregation ? And
how can we look with anything like respect upon a
people who deserve such a severity of reproof ? The
fact is, it is not in the nature of things for an
American to listen to the old saying, that | Honesty
is the best policy; | they cannot believe it; and,
whilst the nations of all the rest of the world look
upon it, not only as a wise proverb, but an axiom
of the profoundest philosophy, the American read- AMEBIC AN MANNEES AND MORALS.
ing  is  entirely  different,  their maxim  being  that
" Roguery is the best policy ! |
I certainly will not go so far as a French friend
of mine who had resided twenty-five years in the
States, and gave it as his opinion, that the next best
speculation, after General Tom Thumb, would be to
find a complete American gentleman—that vara avis
in terris—and exhibit him in London and Paris at a
shilling a head I Though every one must admit, who
travels through the United States, that the humanizing influences of polished society are entirely wanting throughout that country : and, therefore, it is no
wonder the Americans are generally vulgar : but
why they should be hypocrites in the northern States,
rogues in the middle, and ruffians in the south, is
not so easily accounted for* The western states
have as yet hardly earned any peculiar and distinguishing character, except for industry and enterprise under all the disadvantages of a deadly climate.
I have no hesitation in pronouncing the United
States of America an inferior country: and after
150,000 miles of travelling in every corner of the
world, my opinion may be entitled to some little
"degree of credit. Every one that emigrates to that
country will be disappointed, except the wild Irish,
who, though they cannot well be worse off than they
are in Connaught and Munster, may be constantly
heard grumbling by the side of their wheelbarrows,
in New York, wishing to be back to their hovels UNION  NOT   PERMANENT.
and potatoe-parings in Ould Ireland. As for making
any comparison between the United States and the
United Kingdom, it is out of the question, and
would be entirely degrading to Great Britain; and
I should as soon think of comparing Captain Tyler,
who, by the accidental death of General Harrison,
became President of the United States, and was
nicknamed in consequence His Accidency ; I should
as soon think of comparing the two countries together, as I should compare the President of America with Queen Yictoria; the one, as I have seen
him, combing his hair with a filthy comb tied up
with a piece of string, in a steam-boat, and washing
himself with a jack-towel in common with fifty
other dirty passengers: and the other, whom every
Briton delighteth to honour—the real Queen of the
richest, most powerful, and most stupendous empire
the world ever saw, upon which the sun never sets,
and the booming of whose morning and evening
guns is a perpetual salute from station to station
round the globe.
With regard to the probable permanency of the
American Union, in the present infancy of the He-
public, it is only possible to venture an opinion. The
Americans themselves are everlastingly braefgino; that
D   J DO        O
they will soon reckon a hundred millions of inhabi-
tants, stretching from ocean to ocean; and that, as
soon as they have got their navy yards and line-of-
battle ships at the mouth of the Oregon, all other WEAKNESS OF THE EXECUTIVE.
nations may shut up shop, and that " Rule Britannia "
will then become an empty boast. Now, when we
consider that this best of all possible governments is
only an experiment of some sixty years' standing, it
would become the Americans, if they had any grain
of modesty, but which they unfortunately have not,
to pause before they crow over the other poor deluded
nations of Europe, as they call them, and ask themselves where all the present fury of party politics,
the wickedness, bribery, and corruption of their
government, the reckless aggrandisement and extension of their territory to Texas and Oregon is to end ?
And the most difficult of all, what is to become of
the three millions of discontented slaves, and their
constant increase, in a land whose written constitution sets out by proclaiming to mankind that all
men are born free and equal!
It needs no ghost to come from the grave to tell
us that the glory will be departed from the United
States long before they attain their expected population of a hundred millions, and that, long before that
period, the | Queen of the World and the child of
the skies" will most likely be split into three or four
separate governments. The present cabinet of Colonel Polk is weak in the extreme, and so are all the
heads of departments; and we all know to be weak
is to be miserable. The chief himself is already tired
of his elevation, which he finds to be not altogether
a bed of velvet; and, though it may be fun to the 6
democrats who elected him, the Great Unknown, out
of sheer opposition to a worthy and virtuous man,
Henry Clay, yet it was death to him, and he publicly
declared, before he had been three months at the
White House, that he had no intention, at the end of
his four years of kingship, to offer himself again as
representative of the sovereign people ! The Colonel is considered by the few who know him as a
plain, straightforward man for a lawyer, with firmness and courage, but knows nothing of the science
of government, which should only be entrusted to
him who possesses most virtue, most knowledge, and
most intellect. But these, though they are recommendations in old and experienced Countries, are the
very worst and most fatal qualifications to a candidate's success in America for the presidential chair.
No honest man can ever be President of America
again. The day of the Washingtons and Jeffersons
is past, never to return. The people publicly declare
that they do not want the best man; they want the
most available man. If you elect me I will appoint
you; and as all the servants of the Government are
abruptly turned out at a general election every four
years, it gives the new President immense patronage,
and for the first half-year of his office he is obliged to
work like a horse in considering upon and filling up
the ten thousand offices that suddenly become vacant.
" Rotation to office" is one of the watchwords of every
party in America, but particularly of the democrats. OPINIONS OF FOREIGNERS. 7
All classes in America are excessively greedy of
praise ; the love of approbation, as Combe would say,
being strongly developed in their crania. Notwithstanding the repeated warnings they have received,
they cannot believe it possible that the strictures of
Mrs Trollope or Dickens can have emanated from
anything but a spirit of rancour and national jealousy.
With regard to Boz, this was the unkindest cut of all;
und I need not caution that clever writer to steer
clear of the United States for the remainder of his
natural existence, for if they were to catch him in
Broadway not all the 8,000 Irishmen forming the
grand army of the United States, if they were suddenly recalled from Texas, Florida, the Canadian
and Indian frontiers, would be able to protect Mr
Dickens from being tarred and feathered. They do
not like the truth, and will not tolerate it from any
man. Whilst to praise the Americans and their institutions is still worse than to show up their defects ;
and you thus most certainly secure their abuse, at the
same time you confirm them in their prejudices; when
by the other open and honest way, you at least open
the door to improvement, though the galled jade
may wince.
The Scotch, who in many respects I am sorry to
say resemble the Americans, hated Dr Johnson for
abusing their barren country, and for saying that he
did not see a tree there larger than his walking-stick.
The consequence was immediately seen in rewards 8
offered by various agricultural meetings to the largest
planters; and the forests of larch and firs over many
parts of Scotland, at the present day, testify to the
good use the canny Highlandman made of the Doctor's abuse. So it is in America; many of the
improvements making and made in their social
state, are attributable to the showing up of English
There is one more subject which may as well be
alluded to thus early, as it is of the very last importance when speaking of the United States, but which
has never been prominently brought forward by any
writer on that country, at least in the manner it
deserves, and that is, the climate, which I consider
to be the worst in the world, that is in the temperate
regions of the world from 23i deg. to 66h deg. The
writer's opinion is that there is not an inch of the
country but what labours under the most unfortunate and intolerable climate. On the 29th of May
last, in New York, the frost was so severe as to cut
off every green thing. The thermometer fell to 24
deg., and on the 18th July the same thermometer
was up to 104 deg., showing a rise of 80 deg. in less
than two months.* During the cold on the 29th
May, it seemed as if the marrow had all left the
* By an account in an American print it appears that in the western country at sun rise, lately, the thermometer indicated 18 deg.,
and at noon of the same day it stood at 94 deg., a difference of 76
deg. of temperature in about five or six hours! MORTALITY. 9
bones, and every one stood shivering almost incapable of exertion. Not that 24 deg. of cold is anything very intolerable when it comes at Christmas or
in January or February, but here the excessive cold
had been preceded by some extraordinary hot weather
in the middle of May, and the sudden transition
which occurred in the short space of nine or ten days
made the sensation of cold on the 29th May most
acute and painful; but there is a remedy for cold,
however severe—additional clothing, additional fires,
and extra exercise. But how are you to alleviate
great heat ? In the night as well as day, on the seaboard of the States it is all the same, and even at
Boston, the head-quarters of ice, the thermometer
in July was a degree or two higher than at New
York: the heat of Calcutta and Jamaica, without
the luxuries or the conveniences of the first, or the
sea-breezes of thejast. And yet, with all this miserable heat, when people are dying on every hand
around you,* and you are incapable of the slightest
* The Weekly Keport of deaths in New York, for the week ending 20th July, 1845, and signed by Cornelius Archer, City
Inspector, was four hundred and seventy-four in a population of
350,000, whilst in the same week in London, the Report published
gave eight hundred and forty-four deaths. Now, reckoning the
difference of the population of the two cities, London, according to
the proportion in New York, ought to show a mortality of 3,000
deaths per week! And yet London is not so well supplied with
water as New York, and the drunkenness of London is beyond all
comparison greater than in the American city. 10
exertion, the country cannot produce an orange or a
bunch of grapes, because it is too cold !
For beef, pork, and butter, wheat, and Indian
corn, these main requisites and necessaries of life, the
United States excel all other countries, but beyond
this you must look in vain for the comforts, enjoyments, luxuries, and the elegantiae et delicias vitas of
a residence in any part of London. I have long made
up my mind that a shilling in England is better than
a dollar or 4s. in the United States, and it is some
comfort to know that it is far easier to earn the shilling in England than the dollar in America; and fur-
ther than this I feel convinced that the better class
of London mechanics, those who earn their nftv*
sixty, and seventy shillings per week, eat and drink
every day of their lives better and nicer food than
two-thirds of the inhabitants of the United States
from the President downwards. But, not to detain
the reader further, we will proceed to our arrival in
and first impressions of America. CHAPTEE II.
New York—Arrival and Pilot—Pilots all Teetotallers—Pilots
Newspapers—Swampy Coast—Feeling of Disappointment—Erroneous Notions of Englishmen respecting American Freedom—
American Bombast—Landing at Puddle Dock—No Lodgings —
New York Filth—The Port—No Names to the Streets—Fires
every Night—Boarding-Houses—Nothing eatable or drinkable
in them—Americans adulterate everything—Eat like Wolves
—Men have no Shoulders, Females no Bosoms—Ladies far from
Pretty—No old People to be seen—Steam-Boats, fifteen make a
Mile—People all Water-Drinkers—Clergy not given to Wine—
All Teetotallers—No Pledge, no Congregation, Ardent Spirits
publicly Denounced by Six Presidents.
We arrived on the coast of America from the tropics ; there were no other passengers but a young
American and myself. We were steering for Cape
Hatteras, weather cold and squally, and I shivered up
on deck, hearing that we were laying the ship to,
previous to sounding with the deep-sea lead. We
were in sixty fathoms, and yet no land to be seen.
We kept on sounding and shoaling till we descried a
pilot-boat from Cape May. They came alongside,
but hearing that we were bound for New York, these
Philadephian gentlemen would have nothing to do 12
with us; but the following day another pretty little
schooner, having a large painted distinguishing mark
in her sails, came very near to us in a rough and
stormy sea, and we backed the head-sails whilst the
pilot came on board in a little cockle-shell of a dingy,
that you could almost carry under your arm. We
were very glad to get him on board; and, after
admiring the elegant and fairy-like proportions of
his watery home, the schooner shoved off, and we
began to ask the news. The pilot service of the
port of New York may be considered as nearly perfect ; it consists of thirteen schooners, of about sixty,
seventy, up to ninety tons burthen, and costing six
and seven thousand dollars each.
There are seventy pilots, all middle-aged men,
and none are eligible except total abstinence men;
therefore vessels are never lost owing to drunken
pilots; this is impossible. The English might
here borrow a leaf out of the American book. It
frequently happens, on arriving in the English
channel, that the pilot who boards you is a man of
seventy years of age, and I have known him hoisted
up with a tackle, because he was too infirm for
climbing up the side-ladder; but an important service
like that of pilots should be limited to the ages between thirty and sixty. And, moreover, the first
thing an English pilot asks for, is a glass of grog;
whilst the New York pilot who boarded us, a hundred miles from the port, in common with the other NEWSPAPERS.
sixty-nine of the fraternity, are pledged to drink
nothing stronger than tea or coffee, or they would be
refused a licence.
We were very much amused with the variety of
fresh newspapers which the pilot kept pulling out of
his pockets, large and close-printed, the size of the
( Morning Advertiser' in London, and published at a
halfpenny each ! True they were on inferior paper,
badly printed, with worn-out type, with violent
language, personalities, and party politics, for the
stock in trade of the editor. ee Ah," said the pilot,
% it is party that is killing our country."
But the weather was so cold and cheerless that I
could no longer remain on deck. We were running
along an extremely low sandy coast, with salt water
ponds inside the sand hills, the great nursery of the
large oysters for the New York market. It is a low
miserable shore all the way to New York, and was
enough to strike a damp into our minds, being so
different from the splendid mountains we had left
only a few weeks before. This first sight of the
North American continent continued two davs, and
was calculated greatly to depress us, particularly as
we had been all the voyage, with the prompting and
assistance of our young American fellow-passenger,
filling our imaginations with the idea of the beautiful
land we were approaching, its astonishing greatness
in physics and morals, and the overwhelming splendour of New York, not forgetting Ni bio's and Castle
c 14
I~ I
Gardens. Notwithstanding this first disappointment
of the low, sandy, swampy and unhealthy coast, I
was determined to be pleased with everything, and to
become, in short, an American in feeling; and as I
had long been familiar with all her popular institutions, and model of cheap and effective government,
it was not impossible but I might purchase a small
property in the country, and so become a naturalized
citizen of the Great Republic. I really was enamoured, before landing, with everything American,
from universal suffrage down to her rocking chairs,
and used to think that we were centuries behind
her in the science of legislation and cheap government. I had been taught that monarchy was
naturally extravagant, splendid, and expensive; that
it was careless of the sufferings of the people; and
provided it could succeed in raising the taxes, it
thought of nothing else but the interests and enjoyments of courts and courtiers. But we were now
passing the entrance to the Bay of New York, or the
p Narrows" as it is called, about three quarters of a
mile wide, and it all looked very pretty, and newly
painted; but still all flat and low. Fort Lafayette
is on the right hand going in, and is considered, in the
hyperbolical language of America, another Gibraltar.
There are also a few fortifications on the left hand,
opposite to the Fort Lafayette. But the ( Queen'
and the e Howe,' with the i Great Western' lashed
between them, and of course protected by them, would AMERICAN BOMBAST.
render the American Gibraltar, like the Chinese
Forts in the Bocca Tigris, a dead letter in about
fifteen minutes!
"Is not that a beautiful flag ?" said my young
American friend, pointing to the national colours;
" can anything be finer than this glorious expanse of
water ? You that have seen the Bay of Naples,
which do you prefer, Naples or New York ? "
I Gently, gently, my dear friend; you are getting
on too fast; perhaps you will allow me to ask a
question; which of the two great modern poems do
you prefer, ( Childe Harold,' or e Cock Robin ?"
But in the true American ignorance, he candidly
replied that he could not say, for he had never read
We were now actually stepping on shore at the
Battery Point, the universal landing-place for every
person arriving in New York. It is exactly like
Puddle dock, Blackfriars, where the scavengers
collect and transfer the stinking accumulations of
rottenness and filth to be sold for manure. Had it
been summer, and under the fervid beams of a New
York sun, it must have produced malaria and sickness, but these people think nothing of these things.
As I was not troubled with anything more than a
carpet bag, having left our luggage on board the
ship, I preferred proceeding on foot; so, leaving the
said travelling bag in charge of an honest-looking
Irishwoman selling cakes, with orders to deliver it
i 16
! ■■■:
to nobody but myself, I set off to look for lodgings.
But, after walking up Broadway and most of the
principal streets of the city, I could not discover one
single bill up, in any of the windows as I walked along.
This I thought very characteristic and singular, and
rather a prosperous sign. In the same length of walk
in London I could have counted a thousand, either
"Apartments Furnished," "Room to Let," "Lodgings for a Single Gentleman," " Unfurnished Rooms,"
or something of the kind, but in New York, after
three hours' trudge, not one solitary notice of the kind.
I knew that it was not the fashion to live on the solitary system, but to congregate in boarding houses, and
so, after a very agreeable and instructive walk of
about three hours through the principal streets of the
city, I returned to the old cake woman, and recovered
the carpet bag,, and proceeded in a cab to one of the
neighbouring boarding houses.
My walk had led me through some of the dirtiest
streets I had ever seen in my life. Seven years
Augean collection of all sorts of nastiness seemed to
be here ripening for the first summer's sun, to regale
the noses of the New Yorkers, and yet there is no
lack of street inspectors; I was told there are upwards
of a dozen; but they, like all other employees, appear
to make their offices nothing more than a great
school of politics. But the first glance at the port
of New York stamps it at once as the greatest seat
of commerce in the world, London alone excepted. NEW  YORK  FILTH.
Bristol and Liverpool, Hamburg, Havre, Bordeaux,
and Marseilles, Lisbon and Cadiz, Calcutta and
Bombay, Bahia or Rio de Janeiro, are all contemptible in comparison of New York as a sea-port, which
seems to be formed by nature as the chief emporium
of shipping of the civilized world. The city is also
well laid out, the streets long and straight, though,
being built on a low, swampy, narrow island, it is all
length and no breadth, and the price of building land
must therefore go on continually advancing in the
neighbourhood of the Park, Astor House, and other
favourite localities for business.
Strange to say, with all the accumulated filth in
the streets down town, as it is called, the inhabitants
of this great maritime city think New York the
cleanest place in the world ; and stranger still, though
I was nearly breaking my neck every five minutes in
looking up to find the names of the streets, they have
a repugnance to have them written up, though every
house in the business part of the city is plastered
over with enormous letters, from the basement to
the attics, with the names and callings of the fifty
different people that dwell therein, yet they will not
write up the names of their streets. In London, but
more especially in Paris, it is universally the practice
to put up the names at every corner of the city; and
in the French capital they are much more elegantly
painted, and better attended to, than in London.
The Croton Aqueduct is deservedly the pride of
C 2 18
the city. It has cost twelve millions of dollars, and
competent engineers have assured me that it might
have been done for nine millions. But if it had cost
twenty millions it would have been cheap; for it has
distributed health and cleanliness, comfort and cheerfulness, all through the extensive city, and the rates
of fire insurance fell one-half from the day the plugs
were opened to the public.
The first night I slept in New York there was a
large fire, but nobody regarded it, as it only consumed nineteen houses. The next night there was
another, and not a night or a day passed without
one; and many months after the first night of my
return to New York, after a tour to the Mississippi,
burst forth the great fire of 20th July; at which time,
as I said before, the thermometer was at 103 deg.
and the place might, in every sense, be called a
"burning city."
I went to several boarding houses before finally
making a selection. In answer to inquiries for the
terms, they were generally reasonable enough: the
highest two dollars a day, about 8s. 6d. sterling; and
the lowest one dollar. At these last I inquired their
hours. Breakfast at six o'clock and half-past:—hot
beef-steaks, mush and milk, hommaney, rice and
molasses, mackerel, salmon, shad, hot cakes, and rolls
of every description; tea and coffee. Dinner at
twelve o'clock, and supper at six. The bill of fare,
on reading, looks abundant enough; but really, on NOTHING   EATABLE.
inspection, this well-covered table offers to an Englishman very little that is even eatable, much less
palatable. Though every one must admire the early
hours and temperance of the Americans, yet only
imagine a Londoner, and an old hand, not used to
anything much worse than the shady side of Pall-
mall, assembling at six o'clock at the noise of a great
bell—washed and shaved, mind, by six o'clock—to
look at an immense rump-steak at the head of the
table swimming in fat, not half cooked; then lower
down a dish of enormous salt mackerel, one of which
would make two of our English mackerel; then
some Halifax salmon just as taken from the barrel,
and as salt as brine; then two or three smaller
dishes, some with mush, a food for pigs, and others
with hommaney, only differing from mush in that
this last is white maize ground and boiled in water,
whilst mush is yellow corn ground and boiled. As
this sort of food is not known in England, thank
God, except in the penitentiaries, I have been rather
particular in describing it. No caution is required
to my countryman to avoid it, because the very
sight of it will be enough to make him sick. The
remainder of the table was filled up with some
warmed-up tough old hen, called chicken fixings, all
washed down with the most execrable coffee in the
whole world. I used to think that England might
defy all creation for bad coffee, but the Americans
beat us hollow.    It is all that abominable trash from 20
I Nil
Rio, costing there about twopence halfpenny per
pound by the cargo; and as the Americans really
seem to be no judges, even of things they are constantly putting into their mouths, or else so careless
that they care nothing about it, whether it be good
or bad, all is Brazilian coffee bought by the boarding-house keeper, ready ground, and of course, as
the Americans adulterate everything, ready mixed.
I was, therefore, obliged to take refuge in tea, genuine Hyson skin, worth about ninepence per pound;
for, singular to say, on these two important articles
with the English government in a financial view—tea
and coffee—the tariff of the Americans admit both
of them entirely free of duty. There is one thing
to be acknowledged at all American, tables — the
universal excellence and profusion of fresh butter.
In all one's travels through that vast country, I
never saw anything approaching to a piece of rancid
or inferior butter.
We were some thirty or forty at breakfast. The
men ate like,wolves, and, cheap as it was, I reckoned
it cost them a shilling per minute.# Little children,
who also assemble at these tables, were permitted by
their foolish mothers to be guzzling raw rump-steaks
swimming in fat at six o'clock in the morning !
There is also at the breakfast table a profusion of
nice-looking   hot   yellow   cakes,  called,  I believe,
* A New York shilling is worth an English sixpence. MEN HAVE  NO  SHOULDERS.
Johnny cakes, made of Indian corn, but they are
like mush and hommaney—only fit for pigs or prisoners. This valuable grain, which is one of the
greatest gifts of nature, and which is more extensively cultivated in the States than in any other
country, under the single name of green corn, forms
a delicious dish of vegetable at dinner, little inferior
to green peas, but in every other shape or manner of
preparation it is perfectly execrable, and would
scarcely be eaten by a Scotchman, although accustomed to his oatmeal porridge. Though not important, it still deserves mentioning, that at what
may be called the cruet department of an American
dinner table, an Englishman feels greatly disappointed. The mustard, pepper, vinegar, &c. form
the most detestable collection of nastiness ever put
upon a table cloth, and perfectly impossible for an
Englishman to touch. This is not merely the case
at the dollar boarding houses, but it is universal all
over the cities and towns of the sea board and the
In Broadway, the principal street in New York,
but not near so fine as Begent street or Oxford
street, the characteristics of the Americans as a
people are hardly to be distinguished, as nearly one
third of the passengers are foreigners; but in walking
leisurely through the other principal streets, the
physical conformation of the true-blooded Yankee,
as he calls himself, begins to be developed.    The 22
men have no shoulders: they are tall and lathy like
corn-stalks, and under the nape of the neck they are
sometimes as narrow as a female. The ladies of
New York have been through all time, which means
about fifty years, so famous for their beauty, that
I know I shall be accused of heresy, envy, hatred,
malice, and all uncharitableness if I say that it is
entirely a mistake. But the truth must be told, and
I have seen more pretty women in London in one
day than ever I saw during all my rambles in the
United States.. That prominent point of female
loveliness, and which the whole English race so
much excel in, is entirely wanting in the American
ladies: they are as fiat as their own horrid sea-
eoast; and though they artfully endeavour to conceal this national deficiency by a peculiar, newly-
invented, and really very ingenious corset, yet it
will not do; our imaginings return unsatisfied, and
our worst suspicions come back confirmed.
But it must be confessed, that what they want in
busts they make up in bustles, and to an excess that
shocks an English female, and which is so glaring
and preposterous as to be downright indelicate.
The pure red and white of English complexions
must not be looked for in any part of the States.
The lilies and the carnations are not of American
growth; the men are sallow, and the women tallow.
Another thought occurs involuntarily to the pedestrian through the city, where are the old men and NO  OLD PEOPLE.
women ? You see none, absolutely none. Now, I
know a town in the United Kingdom, not the United
States, where every third person you meet is seventy
years of age! But the fact is, from the statistical
tables published, the mortality of the American cities
and towns is frightful! According to the weekly bills
of mortality for London during the summer of 1845,
the number of deaths every week in New York
ought not to exceed one hundred and forty. All
beyond one hundred and forty is unnatural, excessive,
and premature, and therefore, by adopting greater
sanatory precautions, the average salubrity of the
city would be improved. Abolishing that nuisance
at the landing place at Whitehall before alluded to,
as resembling Puddle dock, would effect some good,
filling up that most pestiferous slip near it, and abolishing some of the other nuisances going towards the
pier of the Great Western steamer, would also have
excellent results.
Nobody of the slightest observation can rest easy
in New York until he has seen and visited the splendid steamers for which she is so justly celebrated.
And it gives the writer infinite pleasure, to so much
censure to be able to throw in even an ounce of
praise. But the New Yox*k steamers are beyond all
praise. To go on board the \Troy,' the j? Empire,'
the ' Massachusetts,' the f Bhode Island,' the e Nara-
ganset,' and the hundreds of others, many even
superior to these, is quite a treat, and well worth 24
crossing the Atlantic to see. I am a most strenuous
advocate for every person, no matter what his pursuit, visiting the United States, but to stop and
reside there permanently, the Great Republic is not
yet rich enough to tempt me with a sufficient bribe.
Certainly to be President of the United States, or
slave of the lamp as I call him, would not induce me
to' exchange my humble doings at the west end of
London, with the charming facilities of securing
access, whenever the fit takes one, to Paris or Borne.
But to return to the magnificent steamers on the
north and east rivers. They are as truly surprising
in their dimensions as they are convenient and profuse in their decorations. Fifteen steam-boats make
a mile: this is a new rule of arithmetic, only found
out in America, and I mention it because it is much
more easy than to remember that they are three hundred and fifty feet long each. The Americans of all
classes are a travelling people, eminently so as confined to their own country; but they know nothing
of any other countries. The United States is large
enough, they think, to satisfy the most greedy of
travellers, and the price of travelling is so cheap that,
as the whole population lives in boarding houses, it is
as cheap to be travelling as to be stopping at home,
if you can apply such a word as home to a boarding
house. For instance, in these moving palaces, which
go twice a-day to Albany, one hundred and fifty
miles, as far as Margate and back again, I paid two FIFTEEN MAKE A MILE.
shillings, but I might have gone the same day for
one shilling, by another boat not quite so new and
splendid. Only think, to Margate and back for one
shilling! We sate down two hundred to dinner, and
an excellent dinner we had, but it was two shillings
each, rather a high price. I npticed that everybody
drank water. I hardly remember one single cork
being drawn during the whole dinner; perhaps there
was not one ! Now here is a fact as truly astounding as the vast proportions and magnificent fittings
of the steamer, and I thought to myself, who can
stop the progress of a nation that to an unlimited
extent of fertile land adds these two grand auxiliaries
of steam and temperance ? Steam has done wonders
for America and is only in its infancy, and yet omnipotent as it is for developing the power and wealth of
the growing states, yet the universal diffusion of
temperance is calculated to secure the greatest
amount of individual happiness. The greatest men
in America have added the lustre of their names to
this good cause, and as this has been done from an
innate feeling of propriety, and not through any
Father Mathew, it is deserving of the highest admiration and imitation. Would that the bishops and
clergy of our dear Britain, a far superior country for
all classes of Englismen than the best parts of the
States; would that our clergy would do as they did
in America and preach up the new crusade! Perish
the gin-palaces rather than that the hard-working
mechanic and his family should not have the bright
example of the clergy to encourage them in their
first efforts to shake off the expensive and suicidal
habit of drunkenness! The movement first emanated
from the clergy of America, that part, the far greatest part, which we call dissenters.
But it is not by preaching that the good came.
No, the clergy were the first to sign their names, for
ever abandoning the use of all intoxicating drinks,
and then their hearers and congregations immediately
followed. All the preaching in the world would have
done no good; but, said they, if we see our minister's signature at the head of the list in our town or
parish, then we will follow with our names; and thus
this great reform has been accomplished. But we
shall have occasion to refer hereafter more at large to
the practice and moral effects of the temperance
movement in the United States. 1 had chosen a
much too early day in the season to sail up the
Hudson, but it was the first or nearly so of the
opening of the navigation, and I had become quite
impatient to inspect the workings of these elegant
monsters of the North Biver. The Americans
are too apt to laugh at and ridicule our Thames
steam-boats, and look upon the cockle-shells that
run to Gravesend and Margate as a very favourite measure of British inferiority in everything connected with steam; and certainly, after a visit to
New York, the best of these boats look paltry in AMERICAN  STEAMERS.
the extreme, whether thef Star' oriDiamond;' and one
can hardly believe that they are the same boats that,
previous to going to America, we used to think in
every way so fine and convenient. But the Americans ought to recollect, that larger boats would
not be adapted to our rivers, and that we must
submit, in the one article of river navigation, to be
excelled by our transatlantic brethren. But it is
quite the reverse in ocean steamers; there Great
Britain beats the world, as witness those giants of
the deep the ' Great Western,' e Great Britain,' e Precursor,' e Hindostan,' e Bentinck,' jE Great Liverpool,'
and a hundred others in the service of private packet
companies—not to say anything of the steam ships
of war belonging to Government. There is not an
instance in America of the man at the wheel standing, as with us, close to the rudder at the stern of
the boat. The helmsman is always perched up aloft
on the highest deck, where we place our foremast,
giving him a complete command of all before him.
There he sits in an elegant office, enclosed on all
sides with windows, turning his wheel according to
the direction he wants to steer in: which wheel
communicates, by means of two rods of iron, about
three-eighths generally, with the tiller; and as none
of the passengers ever see him, nobody ever thinks
of him, and much less talks to him.
I ought to have mentioned that, in reference to
temperance, no family in America would attend the 28
preaching of a minister who drinks anything stronger
than tea and coffee; the Americans cannot reconcile
the idea of a parson rising from the fumes of whiskey-
toddy, port, or sherry, falling on his knees in the
pulpit, invoking the blessing of the Most High, when
they assemble and meet together; it would be considered a profanation, and looked upon as a sacrilege.
Even cider must be abandoned, though it is a very
harmless and agreeable beverage % and the American
cider is the best in the world, and is besides a source
of considerable profit to the farmers of New England
and New Jersey. But " touch not the unclean thing* is
the first principle,* and they manfully adhere to it, and
* The Americans are very fond of first principles, as one may
see in their advertisements, one of which I cut out of a ' Nashville
nPHATS my motto, now and hereafter; and I regret that I ever
lost sight of it. I had made money and was thriving, when,
in an evil hour, I let go this wholesale maxim, and lost all in consequence. I intend to make a fresh start, and go back to first
principles, with full confidence that my old friends and the public
will extend a generous encouragement. '* Keep thy shop and thy
shop will keep thee," said Dr Franklin ; I believe it, and shall
therefore be always found at mine in MARKET STREET, three
doors from Nichol's corner, opposite the Lion and Mortar, ready
and able to manufacture all descriptions of COPPER, TIN, and
SHEET IRON WARE, STOVE PIPES, &c, at short notice, on
moderate prices, and in the best style of workmanship.
igsf Old Copper and Old Pewter will be taken in exchange for
every article sold by me.
January 20, 1843—1£. WM. H. MOORE. ■
in every respect find it to their advantage. In short,
they never think of anything but the pure element,
and the consequence is, that the water everywhere is paid great attention to, and is generally
The following was first signed during the late war
with Great Britain, under the presidency of Madison,
and was thought, at that period of drunkenness, a vast
step and a great discouragement to the then prevailing and national failing of dram-drinking. It
deserves consideration in the high places of our own
land; for there can be no question if the money now
squandered in needless drink were laid out in good
four-pound loaves and legs of mutton for the Sunday's
dinner, the poor wives and children of the industrious
classes would be much better looking, and soon would
also be much better dressed; besides the saving in
time and health; but we ought in charity to make
allowance for them, they have no example, their
preachers only point the way instead of leading it.
The President's declaration, thirty years ago,
against spirituous liquors:—
" Being satisfied from observation and experience,
as well as from medical testimony, that ardent spirit,
as a drink, is not only needless but hurtful, and that
the entire disuse of it would tend to promote the
health, the virtue, and the happiness of the community, we hereby express our conviction that, should
the citizens of the United States, and especially the
11 il 30
young men, discontinue entirely the use of it, they
would not only promote their own personal benefit,
but the good of our country and the world.
"James Madison,
Andrew Jackson,
J, Quincy Adams,
Martin Van Buren,
John Tyler.
Jas. K. Polk."
is I Poor Shops—Fire-Engines—Gratuitous System does not answer—
River Hudson—Bottle of Port charged 32s. 6d.—American Markets bad—King of Alleghania—Fruit and Vegetables scarce—
Punch and Mrs Caudle—Trade in Cheap Publications—Moving
the Mansion House—Brooklyn Ferry—Freedom without Law—
Universal Suffrage does not answer—Mob Law—Polk the Great
Unknown—His roaring means nothing—Annexation of Canada
—Newspaper Press—Penny advertising.
Arriving from a Catholic country, it was pleasant
to observe in this large city no priests, no beggars,
no soldiers, and no drunken men. The shops in New
York are, however, very second-rate affairs, there
not being in the whole city half-a-dozen that have
any pretensions to elegance or taste, and those belong to foreigners. I hardly ever passed up Nassau
street without hearing a fire-bell, or encountering
either a fire-engine or a hose-cart. These were
always very affecting exhibitions, so much property
being hourly destroyed by the ruthless element, instead of being circulated through a liappy and industrious community in exchange for the results of their 32
labour! The fire-engines and hose-carts are profusely decorated and even gilded, looking a little like
the sheriffs' coaches in London, but it appeared to
me a very bad system, all through the chapter; and
until it is altered, and a thoroughly efficient fire-
brigade, with intelligent superintendents, introduced
by the civic authorities, there will be no diminution
in the number and extent of New York conflagrations. The city enjoys, at present, the bad preeminence of being the most subject to fires of any
locality in the civilized world. There must be a
reason for this unenviable distinction, and the municipality cannot do a greater service to their fellow-
citizens than to adopt a speedy remedy. Why not
appoint a commission of three respectable and honest
inhabitants, who have already visited Europe, to
proceed to London and Paris, and report on their
return to the Mayor of New York the best means
of preventing and extinguishing fires ? The present
gratuitous plan will never answer. If the fires in
London, rare and unimportant as they generally are,
were left to be extinguished by the apprentices and
clerks of that city, as they are in New York, no
doubt London would soon acquire as great a notoriety
as the Atlantic city, especially if they were not paid
a farthing for their trouble. Nothing can be more
praiseworthy than the courage, activity, and zeal of
the young gentlemen of New York, in pulling theses
Juggernauts of engines through the streets of the GRATUITOUS SYSTEM.
city, night and day, and every day ; I have counted
sixty young men to one engine, when three horses
would have done the work much better and quicker,
and the young men might have remained at home in
their stores or offices. Besides, in stopping a furious
burning is no judgment required, what measures to
adopt, whether to pull down or blow up contiguous
buildings; and who so proper to take this superintendence as a scientific, experienced, and well-paid
director of the fire police, upon whom should rest
all the responsibility of overcoming these frightful
and constant calamities ?
The Hudson River is the pride of the Americans.
It is certainly a noble river, in every way most useful
and convenient, and is constantly, except when icebound, pouring the riches of its navigation into the
great commercial city. It is as wide as the Thames at
Gravesend for one hundred and fifty miles, and deep
enough nearly all the way for ships of large burthen.
We did the voyage in ten hours, including several
stoppages; so that our speed could not have been less
than fifteen or sixteen miles an hour. These boats,
as they are miscalled, being longer than the tGreat
Britain,' seldom carry fewer than ixve hundred passengers ; and often in the height of the hot season, when
there is no breathing in New York, seven and eight
hundred. They also carry cargo, and are considered
good money speculations, though the fare is only two
shillings per head.    In America they know no dis-
'ill 34 RIVER  HUDSON.
tinctions of first class and second class; best cabin-
and forward cabin, all is alike. Jack is as good as his
master, and the fare so cheap that everybody can
afford to pay for the best. The railroad carriages as
well as steam-boats in America are like the London
omnibuses, where a peer of the realm may be seen
sitting next to a common soldier. And why not ? It
is pleasant to see that the English are getting rid of
their prejudices; they used to think it mean to travel
in the second class, but nothing can be mean that is
manly and honest.
The two striking pieces of scenery on the Hudson
River are the Pallisades, soon after leaving New
York, and the Highlands near West Point, about a
third of the voyage to Troy. There is a small portion of the Rhine about Bingen that is superior to
anything on the Hudson, and indeed the Rhine is
altogether a more imposing and important river; but
still the Hudson upon the whole must be considered
equally beautiful and useful. But the Ohio is the
finest river in the States, and perhaps in the world*
take it altogether, and far superior to the Hudson; but
we must leave any description of that splendid stream
until we move to that part of the country.
I was not sorry to return to New York; I had
merely gone up to Troy, as it were, to try my wingSj
and satisfy the craving I felt for an excursion ticket
in these magnificent steamers, leaving the grand tour
till the season should be a little more advanced.   It
was a folly to think of starting for the West before
the 1st of May, so I had nothing to do but to make
myself as comfortable as a New York boarding house
will admit.
I met by accident an old friend in Broadway, who
was surprised and, as he said, delighted to see me after
nearly twenty years' absence. Englishman-like, nothing would do but I must dine with him at the	
Hotel. Not at the public table, for when two old
friends meet in another hemisphere, after twenty
years' separation, they are not satisfied to dine in ten
minutes, secundum Americanos, and therefore we
ordered a much worse and more expensive dinner in
a private room. The dinner, considering the character of the house, which is first rate, was abundant
enough, but badly cooked, as all dinners mostly are in
America, for they don't care so much about it as the
English, and no American ever says a word during
dinner; but I should not have mentioned this trivial
circumstance of dining with an old friend except for
the following circumstance. On the dinner cloth
being removed, my friend ordered the waiter to bring
a bottle of his best port wine. I told my friend that
it was quite unnecessary, I had drank at dinner,
mixed with water, all the wine I wished, and more
than I should have done had I dined at home, and I
would rather have our chat over a good manilla; but
he would not be persuaded. The wine was brought
and decantered, and I believe more than half drunk; 36
but judge our mutual astonishment and annoyance,
on calling for the bill, this said bottle of port was
charged eight dollars ! The bill was promptly paid,
and we left the dear hotel with a growl, determining
never to enter it again. Nearly thirty-five English
shillings for one bottle of old port! Talk no more
of the rapacity of English landlords after this. I
concluded, of course, that the duty on port wine must
be enormous in America, but no, not at all, it is
remarkably low, only six cents, or threepence, per
gallon, so that the duty on port wine is merely
a half-penny per bottle. Was ever such a price
heard of?
The Americans make a great cracking always
about their meat and provision markets, the cheapness and profusion of all the good things of this life;
and my young travelling companion, had I been green
enough, would have almost persuaded me that the
roasted turkies walked about in all the thoroughfares
of his country with a knife and fork sticking in them
crying out to be eaten! But this is one of the thousand fallacies that haunt the imaginations of the igno-
rant, that cannot be otherwise got rid of but by a
personal inspection of the great metropolitan markets.
For New York is evervwhere called the Great Me-
tropoHs, and the State of which it is the capital is
as universally called the Empire State. Indeed
{' Empire" is a very favourite and popular term all
over America, which contrasts oddly enough with KING OF  ALLEGHANIA.
their democratic principles and manners.    But you
have the |Empire' steam-boat, the (Empire' engine,
and the word is employed in a hundred different
attractive forms, seeming almost to argue a foregone
conclusion that the love of distinction, so natural to
the acquisition of wealth, will, some day or other, convert the Atlantic States into the Empire of Allegha-
nia.    As soon as the seat of the General Government shall have been removed to the valley of the
Ohio or Mississippi, Cincinnati or St Louis, at both
of which places such removal is expected and at an
early day, then the great States of New York, Pennsylvania, &c, will begin to think more and more of
nullification and separation    It is not impossible but
some of the present generation may yet live to see
the White House at the Federal City, | To be Let."
But let us take a walk through the boasted markets
of New York, which amount in number to fifteen,
conveniently  distributed throughout the  city. § A
public market is a sort of epitome of a country, and
may very safely be taken as a criterion of its productions.    It is true that, at some seasons of the year,
they are much better furnished than they are  at
others; but having always made the markets in all
countries a favourite lounge, I may say that I have
visited them at all seasons.    The Fulton and Washington are two of the best supplied and largest; but,
beyond the show of beef and potatoes, there was a
plentiful lack of everything.    In the fish way there
Hi 1 if
was little worth having but halibut and bass (salmon
very scarce and dear), and a very abundant and coarse
kind of cockle called clams. But the lobsters and
oysters are magnificent, plentiful, and cheap. The
vegetable market is almost a blank, with the exception of potatoes and peas; but if I were to make out a
list of what they have not got, it would be as long as
my arm. The lowest neighbourhoods in London, to
say nothing of her overwhelming markets, but such
localities as Whitecross street, Tottenham court road,
the New cut, and Spitalfields, exhibit things for sale
in the vegetable way that would astonish a New
Yorker. With the exception of peaches and apples,
which are deservedly celebrated, the American fruit
is very scarce and very bad. The latitude of New
York is the same as Naples, a country whose happy
soil and industrious sons produce everything in perfection. Grapes of twenty different kinds of colours,
shapes, and flavour; oranges, lemons, citrons; raspberries, mulberries, and strawberries; apricots, nectarines, greengages, pears of endless variety and excellence, melons and water-melons, innumerable and almost for nothing; olives, figs, pomegranates, prickly
pears and tomatas, gooseberries, white and red currants, beside black, and such cherries as make the
mouth water to remember; quinces, almonds, and
medlars, damsons and plums of every hue, and walnuts, filberts, and small nuts innumerable. But not
to speak of Naples, some t)f these are to be seen in FISH AND VEGETABLES SCARCE.
the markets and streets of London every day in the
year, whilst very few of them are to be seen at all in
the American cities; and when they are to be met
with they are mere abortions, and generally of a
detestable flavour. The consequence is, that the
great show of fruit in the Atlantic markets consists
either of blackberries, whirtleberries, wild cherries,
pea-nuts, and a dozen other wild fruits, growing in
the woods, and intended by Providence for the sustenance of the birds and squirrels! The same remarks
apply with still greater force to table vegetables.
Compared with England the supply is scanty, and
the quality very inferior. The climate does not
answer for the long list of delicious vegetables known
to happy England, but to name many of which would
be almost unintelligible to American readers: the
same with fish; salmon, turbot, and soles, crabs,
shrimps, and prawns are, with the exception of the
first, utterly unknown; and who would live in a
" world without soles!" The other markets are not
a bit better than the Fulton, and I will therefore not
describe them The market at Philadelphia 1 found
on a large scale, and better supplied than any of the
fifteen markets of New York; and even at Cincinnati
the various markets appeared fuller of nice things
than in the Empire city.
The Americans are certainly a nation of readers,
and it is always amusing to walk the principal streets
and see what a large traffic is carried on in the cheap 40  PUNCH AND MRS CAUDLE EVERYWHERE.
publications.    The  'Last  of   the  Barons,'  or the
6 Smugglers,' is no sooner arrived in New York than
one publisher strikes off 50,000 copies at threepence
each, and a rival printer a better edition of 50,000 at
6d. and Is.    The respective authors, however, need
not reckon much on  this cheap immortality;  the
books are thrown by as soon as read, like their halfpenny newspapers; in a little time, if you ask where
are they, "Echo answers, Where ?"    There are no
private libraries in America, nor are there any circulating libraries, for it is  cheaper to buy than  to
borrow.    The London picture newspapers form an
item, also, very considerable; and you see c Punch,'
6 Pictorial Times,' and e Illustrated London News,' in
the shop windows for sale, as abundantly as they are
in London.    This is not confined to New York, but
pervades the entire Union, as far as New Orleans;
and, whilst the boat was getting up her steam at St
Louis, at  the junction  of the  two mighty rivers
Missouri and Mississippi, we had  nearly a dozen
boys on board, with great bundles under their arms,
singing out, e Last Lecture of Mrs Caudle' only one
half-penny; No. 20 of the 1Wandering Jew,' and all
Bulwer's and James's novels,  at a shilling each!
The boys drive   a very lucrative trade in these
amusing wares; one youth told me that he cleared
ten dollars a-week on a capital of only ten dollars!
He could therefore dress well, smoke all day, talk
politics and literature, and have a glass of gin-sling MOVING THE MANSION  HOUSE.
when he liked! The American boys begin the world
with about five dollars' worth of cheap publications
and travelling-maps, just as the Jew-boys in London
are turned out to learn the value of money by trying
to sell a few lemons, slippers, or quills.
One need not walk through many streets in New
York without witnessing in one of them a removal
or lifting up of a house; this is almost peculiar to
American mechanics, and I was never tired of looking
at it. The practice has contributed very much to
the straightness and uniformity of the streets, and so
perfectly at home are they at it, that if an advertisement were to appear in the (Sun,' the ( Herald,' or
the i Tribune,' to remove the London Mansion
House to Hampstead Heath, there would be several
offers for the job. As for the north side of Middle
row, they would think nothing of removing it bodily
at once to the Model Prison at Clerkenwell, without
any of the young misses of the family being in the
slightest degree interrupted in their usual avocations.
As for the everlasting and dangerous nuisance of
Holborn hill, which I have been looking at more in
sorrow than in anger for these forty years, in New
York it would be levelled in a week. A worthy
tradesman in the city of Brooklyn, opposite New
York, wanted to convert his two parlour windows
into a shop-front; " No, no," said the builder, | don't
throw away your parlour, I will lift the house up,
and build you a much better, loftier, and more spar 42
cious shop, where the parlour now stands. The
screws and timbers were accordingly brought, and I
saw the two-story brick house go up slowly and
imperceptibly, whilst the daughters were looking out
of window, as if nothing was going on more than
usual. I watched the alteration every time I crossed
the ferry to Brooklyn, and in the course of two or
three weeks the tradesman was occupying his new
and handsome store, as the shops are called.
By the way, nothing can be better regulated, or
more complete, than this said ferry across the East
River from Fulton market to Brooklyn; the fare is
one penny to casual passengers, but the inhabitants
take six-months' tickets at a time for themselves and
family, which reduces the price to less than a halfpenny. The boats are most excellent and roomy, going
every three minutes in the day, and carrying hundreds of passengers and twenty wheel-carriages each
trip. The breadth of the river is here 731 yards,
and the ferry-boat takes you over quicker than you
could walk across a bridge, if there was one on the
spot. This is the narrowest part of the East River,
and a more lively scene on a fine day in April or
May can hardly be desired than is here exhibited in
the rapid passing of great steamers, large awkward
sloops, and ships arriving from and proceeding to
sea, all invariably with a tug lashed alongside.
The police of the metropolitan city of New York
is quite below par, and  totally inadequate to the UNIVERSAL  SUFFRAGE.
exigencies of the place. Public opinion—the great
tyrant of America—is against all interference with
the rights of man, and consequently they detest
everybody in authority over them. The Republic
started with a hatred of foreign rulers, and they
have gone on till the feeling has grown into a hatred
of all rulers; and though the laws are good, nobody
obeys them, and the executive is too weak to enforce
obedience. Where this is to end it is impossible to
say. Universal suffrage is the curse, and will be
the ruin of America. I used, as a young man, to
think very favourably of the specious forms of popular government: but anybody of the slightest
observation need only travel three or four months
in the States, to perceive what a fatal mistake the
wise and good have made in giving up all the real
power in the country out of their own hands into
the hands of the ignorant and immoral, and who
have not a stake in the public hedge, — into the
hands of a mob, consisting, in the Atlantic cities* of
a great proportion of wild, savage, and uneducated
Irishmen. The policemen are not to be distin*
guished from private citizens till their services are
wanted, and then they turn up the corner of their
coat collar and exhibit their badge, just as if the
metropolitan police in London were to wear their
A 65 out of sight under their coat collar! Poor
fellows, if in America they were courageous enough
to wear their letter and number outside, as with us.
ill 44
I in
the sovereign mob would teach them that all power
is derived from and remains with the people. In
the same way that a masonic procession, at some
seasons of excitement, would not dare to walk the
streets of New York. They would be assailed with
mud and rotten eggs, because the sovereign people
have a prejudice against masonry; and no constabulary force that they could muster would be effectual enough to protect them. These are a few of
the specimens of liberty without law, so constantly
forcing itself on the observation of the passing
stranger; and this insolence of the mob is growing
so intolerable and tyrannical, that some change of
measures will certainly take place, and it is not at
all improbable that the day is coming when the
Union will be partially dissolved, and even despotism
welcomed as repose!
The St George's Club is formed of a body of
English gentlemen resident in New York, who, with
a praiseworthy zeal keep up, as far as they dare,
the national festivals, and protect, as far as they are
able, British interests and British emigrants. They
are a very large and wealthy body, and reckon
among their number some of the most respectable
names in New York.
Yet it was a long-debated question, at the meeting
convened for the purpose of considering the details
to be observed at the funeral honours agreed to be
paid to the hero of New Orleans, the late Andrew FOLK—THE  GREAT  UNKNOWN.
Jackson, whether they should carry the Union Jack,
and, more important still, who should carry it. But
as soon as it was determined that the obnoxious
emblem should be carried in the procession, there
was an end of all further deliberation, and dozens of
English hearts immediately volunteered for the service, though it was one of no little danger. But
the solemn character of the procession prevented
any   popular  disturbance,   though   the  ensign was
repeatedly greeted by   i There   goes the b y
flag!" §f
We were discussing the inauguration speech of
Lawyer Polk, which had just come out. Nobody
knew this man, or anything about him, except that
at the last election for President in 1841, when
General Harrison came in against Van Buren, there
was an obscure young man from Tennessee started
for the Vice-Presidency—as Yincent, Oastler, or
Nicholson might do for London or Westminster—
when Captain Tyler, an acknowledged imbecile,
gained the day, the numbers standing thus at the
close of the poll: viz.,
Tyler                 . .            .
Johnson    . .            .       .
Tazewell            . .            *
James K. Polk
And an obscure Jew lawyer in a country village
where the Lucius and Leonidas  Polks  reside,  in
234 votes.
33 1
p  1
Tennessee, in a standing advertisement before and
after the election, thus makes use of his name.*
Such a decisive blow as one vote only would, in
most men, have indicated a tolerably broad hint to
the ambitious lawyer, to retire altogether from further troubling his friends; but no: the rejected for
the /^ce-Presidency, four years after, at the next
election, actually starts for the Presidency, and gains
it too, over the most accomplished, most virtuous,
the best informed, and most suitable man in all
America! What must he say, therefore, in his inauguration speech, for such a flattering reception,
such an overwhelming preference ? Why, of course,
he must lay it on thick—go the whole figure—flatter
the worst passions of those who elected him, and by
all sorts of grand, eloquent, and thundering announcements about Texas, as unfait accompli, and se Oregon
ours without  negotiation," et cetera, et cetera, et
Attorney and Counsellor at Law,
Trenton, Tenn.,
"ELL promptly attend to all business intrusted to his care,
throughout the Western District of Tenn.
James K. Polk
A. W". O. Totten
Milton Brown
N. J. Hess
Buckley, Crockett, and Co.
Cave and Shaffer
October 14.
Columbia, Tenn.
Jackson,      „
»» »
Trenton,     „
New Orleans.
cetera, send his kind hearers home satisfied and contented. But don't be frightened, my Lord Aberdeen, it is all trick, inania verba—words full of sound
and fury, signifying nothing. A mere election after-
dinner speech, and really and positively not intended
to cross the Atlantic. When this speech was penned
the orator had no reference to any other readers
than his own countrymen, and in justice to Polk
this ought to be known, that his roaring means
Still, these silly speeches, electioneering though they
be, do harm; they confirm and strengthen those
savage sentiments of the democrats about war with
Great Britain, and the invincible character of the
Americans, already so ridiculously puffed up, which
it ought to be the great aim of a good President to
subdue; but I found, go where I would, that the
same universal feeling in America prevails in every
state, that they would lick us, as they elegantly call
it, in about a fortnight; but if Great Britain could
stand it out a month or two, that would certainly be
the extent, when she would fall down on her knees
before the glorious republic, crying, " Peccavi!"
and yield everything—Texas, Oregon, to 54 deg. 48
min., Annexation of Canada, and pay by instalments
the expenses of the war, during the payment of which
she would hold Halifax and Bermuda ! This is the
feeling all through America. Unfortunately, go
where you will, in the States an Englishman is known
11 48
instantly by his healthy looks, and is therefore
immediately fastened upon to convince him of the
greatness of the Union, the everlasting power and
importance of the greatest people the sun ever shone
upon. This constant recognition of one as an Englishman is under certain circumstances positively a
nuisance, and. as I had just arrived from a tropical
country, and. was also on the wrong side of fifty, I
had hoped to get along in the crowd, and not be
dragged into discussions about the eternal greatness
of Polk and Co. But nothing would do, and I was
constantly, though the meekest, mildest of mankind,
subject to the extremes of rudeness, from ladies as
well as gentlemen, in railroads and steam-boats.
Everybody, as I said before, reads in America;
but it is the newspaper press that is most patronized
and indulged in. No one grudges a halfpenny for
the ' Sun' or (Tribune,' or a penny for the * Herald,'
which is the property of a renegade Scotsman, who is
always running down everything British, at the same
time that he is for ever exciting his American readers
to acts of spoliation and hostility against his native
country! But this sort of language is the stock in
trade of other newspapers as well as the Americans,
for instance, the jj Constitutionel,' e Si&cle,' and
(Presse,' who are all for war, as they can only live on
events, and a state of peace and national prosperity
does not produce events.
** So wretches hang that jurymen may dine I * NEWSPAPER PRESS.
The (Sun' newspaper states that his daily circulation
is forty-four thousand, and that it requires and receives
a new fount of type every fortnight. The paper is
issued to the boys at three-fourths of a halfpenny,
and sold to the public at the marked price, one cent,
or a halfpenny each paper. It is about the size of the
London papers when single sheets, and it is rumoured
that the proprietor clears thirty thousand dollars
annually by the speculation. He of the IHerald'
states his circulation at forty thousand, but nobody
believes him, though it is well known that he makes
an excellent living, as far as three meals a day goes,
from his speculation. But I have heard very hard
things said of this editor and proprietor, Mr Bennett,
but whether they are true or only partly so, he does
not seem to be a very favourable specimen of the
Scotch character.
The American papers are generally entirely devoid
of any pretensions to talent, even the best of New
York. Their readers don't want to be bothered with
talent. "British Designs on California," at the head of
a column, in large capitals, is better than any leading
article; and " Petitions in Favour of the Annexation
of Canada," the following week, in equally large type,
will carry them through, first-rate, for another ten
days. " Insolent Behaviour of a British Cruiser on
the Coast of Africa," set up very conspicuously, will
also tell; and these cunning Isaacs know so well how iSJCiSGHCaKa
to dish up their halfpenny meal every morning, that
they manage to keep the pot boiling.
But if the American papers have no talent, their
number is really surprising. If in the United States,
Peckham would have its Democrat and Whig
journals, published every morning, writing fierce articles against each other; Tottenham would boast its
Gazette and Bough Hewer; whilst Hammersmith
and Turnham Green would be kept in a constant
state of hot water by the violent leading articles of
Dr  , the  editor of the   Journal, and Colonel
 1 the sole proprietor of the c Mercury' and t Ad
vertiser,' till Acton or Ealing would come in to the
rescue, in one of their daily morning or evening
extras, and usually smart articles, and the next day
there would be a duel on Wormwood Scrubs with
soldiers' muskets, and one or both of the said editors
would be shot dead at the first fire!
The country papers advertise for almost nothing.
A man gives notice that he will advertise in one
hundred and twenty of the leading journals of ^the
State of for less than a penny each, if inserted
for three months, and he will receive payment in
wheat, maize, rye, pork, bacon, whisky, feathers,
bees'-wax, tobacco, hemp, shoes, tinware or eggs!
But we must put an end to this chapter, and see if
the weather is not fine enough to venture up the
country. One Church to every Three Hundred Inhabitants—Alterations in
the Book of Common Prayer—Expected Visit of Queen Victoria
to America—Nothing Permanent—All the Presidents have died
Poor—Americans an ungrateful People—De Witt Clinton and
Whitney—Salaries of Public Men—House Rent enormous—Public
Buildings—Paper Currency—Bank-note Engraving a good Business—Fountains—Packet Ships—Ships of British Colonies such as
New Brunswick—American Navy—Temperance Ships of War—
Flogging abolished in the Navy—American Boasting—Their
Geese all Swans—Few learned Men—Abundance of Ice—Ignorance—Where is Goldsmith's Auburn—Russian Climate—Speculation Mania—New Cities on Paper—Mulberries.
I found the weather still frosty and severe, and
very little inviting to country excursions, and therefore postponed my departure a little longer, till it
should be more congenial. This was the less to be
regretted, as really New York contains much that is
interesting, and a walk up and down the sunny side
of Broadway in the month of April is sure to afford
amusement, together with abundant matter for reflexion.
Here is a city, including its suburbs, of four hundred thousand inhabitants, and constantly increasing; 52
with one hundred and twenty large hotels; thirty
banks, issuing their own notes; seventy insurance
offices; ninety public schools; forty-five steam-boat
companies, and as many different lines of traffic;
seventy newspapers; two hundred churches, &c.;
and yet, numerous as these churches are, in some
towns of the interior they are ten times as numerous,
many of the capitals of the west having one church
for every three hundred inhabitants, and of course one
pastor also; whereas in England it is one church to
each thirteen hundred inhabitants. This perhaps may
be considered in excess, but it is one of those evils that
cures itself, and it is perhaps the best feature belonging to the voluntary system, that the supply and
demand for ministers of the Gospel are easily adjusted,
and if there is no opening in a village for an additional parson, the attempt will not be made to establish him. The supply through the entire Union may
be roughly reckoned at one minister and one church
for every five hundred of the inhabitants, which is
about double the average on the continent of Europe.
The Americans are decidedly great patrons of
religion, and, to a superficial observer, would be pronounced a most religious people. Sunday is most
decently observed everywhere, and though they
have a singular custom in the State of Connecticut
of commencing the Sabbath at sunset on Saturday
evening, and finishing at sunset on Sunday, on the
principle of the evening and the morning being the TO  THREE  HUNDRED  INHABITANTS.
first day, yet in New York Sunday evening is
observed as it is in London, though the Americans
will not.tolerate any cabs, omnibuses, or railway
carriages, plying for hire on that day.
I had been attending the Episcopal Church, and
joining in the prayers for the President of the United
States every Sunday. The preacher had a shocking
nasal drawl, almost universal in America, and the
alterations in the liturgy were so numerous as to surprise me; though afterwards, and on reflection, many
of these alterations seemed judicious. The republicans of the States, following the Church of England
or Episcopal form of worship, have made sad havoc
of the Book of Common Prayer, and the words so
frequently occurring of {King,' (Prince,' &c., have
evidently given them much trouble, how to retain or
to expunge them, without spoiling the whole effect of
the solemn service of the Church. I Kins; of kings,
and Lord of lords,' as applied to the Most High,
were expressions that could hardly be retained in the
Republican version of the Book of Common Prayer;
although the phrase c Kingdom of heaven,' being a
sentence from the Bible itself, has been suffered to
The American hatred of kings and queens is,
however, becoming less violent every year amongst
the intellectual and wealthy classes of the community of the great States on the coast—New England,
New York, and Philadelphia; and I was repeatedly
1 i
asked whether it was not probable, seeing that
Queen Victoria was so fond of travelling, and such
an excellent sailor, that her Majesty would not,
some day or other, honour America with a visit.
If, when she went on board the Great Britain
steamer, at Blackwall, in the spring of 1845, she
had only made up her mind to engage that vessel
as a,temporary royal yacht for the purpose of visiting Canada and, that wonder of the world, the Falls
of Niagara, how the hearts of the American people
would have leaped for joy at the opportunity of
escorting her Majesty from New York to the frontiers, and so on. There can be no doubt the Americans, from so frequently alluding to this probable
visit of the Queen of Great Britain to their shores,
were quite sincere, but a good deal of their enthusiasm is attributable to the English sovereign being
a female, young and beautiful. At any rate, the
respectable class in America is such a small one,
that their voice is entirely drowned in the clamour
of the mob, who are supreme, and are every day
becoming more and more so. An American mob
has np veneration for wisdom, worth, station, or
talent; and for mere title, the circumstance of a
man being a lord would rather tempt a Philadelphia
loafer to throw a brick at his head and finish his
lordship, for daring to come and insult by his presence the free and enlightened citizens of the great
and glorious republic. PRESIDENTS DIE  POOR.
Nothing short of anarchy can terminate this lamentable state of things, for the laws never will be
altered, the law makers being themselves the mob;
but some event or other will arise, nothing being
very permanent in any part of the world, and least
of all in America, that will bring about a revolution
in the present feelings of the better classes in that
country. They will find out, especially when they
begin to travel to Europe, that we are not such
fools on this side of the water as we appear to be;
that we prefer the peace and good order of society
to the furious repetitions of corrupt and murderous
elections, every, four years, for the office of chief
magistrate; and that, although in theory it may be
very well to admire cheap and popular governments,
yet in practice we have found out, especially by
what we witness in the United States, that there
is no advantage in democracy anything to be compared to the vigour of government under a limited
and constitutional sovereign; and that the fixed
order of succession, on the demise of the crown, is
a thousand times better than that greatest of all
evils—civil war, which they were very nearly experiencing lately on the nullification question in South
Carolina; an example which, no doubt, before long
will be followed by some other grumbling and dissatisfied state.
All the American Presidents have died poor, and
some of them insolvent; whilst the widow of one 56
was only relieved the other day by the purchase of
her deceased husband's library ! The idea of a pension, or half pay, would not be listened to for a
moment by the free and enlightened: so that men
of the greatest talent, after wearing themselves out
in the service of the people, to whom the morning of
their life has been devoted, are turned out in their
old age to starve.
The Americans are truly an ungrateful people.
Besides the shabby way they have treated all their
Presidents, from Washington and Jefferson downwards, look at their shameful neglect of such men
as De Witt Clinton, the Governor of the State of
New York, who constructed a work a thousand
times more arduous and more useful than Sir Hugh
Myddleton's aqueduct, known as the New Biver
from Ware to London; viz., the vast canal through
the Mohawk Valley from Albany to Buffalo—as
many miles long as there are days in the year—and
yet in a short time, and almost already, his very name
is nearly forgotten, and in twenty years more his
countrymen, whom he has so much benefitted, will
be wondering what in the world De Witt Clinton
has constructed to be so much remembered and
honoured by the foreign residents in the State of
New York—for it will only be among the foreigners
that his memory will be cherished and esteemed.
Then there is Whitney, not he of the Oregon
Railroad, but the great inventor of the cotton gin WHITNEY.
for separating the cotton wool from the seeds, previous to packing. But for this beautiful contrivance
how would it be possible to send nearly three million
bales of cotton to market. Our readers cannot have
a conception of the importance of this invention
without a little consideration; but if they will recollect, that the cultivation of cotton has arrived at
such an enormous amount in the southern states of
America, that the present crop would require a fleet
of one hundred and fifty vessels of one hundred tons
each to carry the empty bags required for this quantity, they will have some idea of the number of
fleets it would require to carry them full; and yet
the man who made the great discovery how to get
rid of the seeds after picking the cotton, was allowed
to rot and starve, whilst in England he would have
had a monument to his honour in some public thoroughfare two hundred feet high! Fulton the same:
it is all alike; public services are reckoned as nothing
under a government of mobocracy. The public
officers, perhaps the navy excepted, are all so badly
paid, so thoroughly inadequate to the value of their
services, that it is almost beyond human nature to
resist peculation or bribery. The President himself
receives 5,0007. a year, and the next best paid officer
receives 1,500/., such as Secretaries of State. The
best place in the gift of the new President is the
American consulship, at Liverpool, whose emoluments are quite as large, and some years larger, than 58
the salary of the President himself. The next best
situation in the President's gift is said to be the
consulships at Havanna and Havre; next to these
the four collectorships of customs of New York,
New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Boston, who receive
salaries of 1,500/. to 1,600/. a-year each; so that
whilst the head of the state is exercising monarchical
powers, and starving on his 5,000/. a-year, he is dispensing considerable patronage to his numerous supporters who returned him to office. They manage
things differently in the kingdom of Naples, where
the Neapolitan consul, when appointed to the Island
of Malta, is obliged to pay 250/. per annum for his
House rent is extravagant in New York. A shop
without a parlour, or anything but an empty small
shop lets for 1,000 dollars a-year, provided it is in
a good situation; and for a good business premises
in the heart of the city, the rent would be as much
as the salary of the Secretary of State. Indeed,
there is more than one hotel up the country that lets
for 20,000 dollars a-year, a rent that cannot be
paralleled in the same business in any other quarter
of the world. The Aston House is the principal
hotel in New York, but the writer did not hear the
amount of rent; it is thought by the citizens to be
a very grand affair, and a model of architecture, but
this is the science in which the Americans are, of all
others, the most ignorant.    There is not, with the PUBLIC  BUILDINGS.
exception of the two recent buildings in Wall street,
anything worth looking at throughout the entire
city. A great fuss is made about the new Gothic
church of the Trinity, in Broadway, but looking at
the immense sum it has cost, and, if they had employed an Italian architect, what might have been
constructed for so much money, nothing but a feeling of disappointment and regret comes over the
spectator on inspecting it. The two buildings alluded to in Wall street, viz, the Custom house and
the Exchange, would do honour to any city, as they
are chaste and elegant, while they are solid and substantial specimens of the Grecian style. Nothing
could have a better effect in curing the present inordinate vulgarity of American taste, than a frequent
distribution of such buildings over the country.
These, together with the unfortunate United States
Bank in Philadelphia,—that grave of ten thousand
fortunes,—are admirable exceptions to the general
want of good buildings throughout America. By the
way, this notorious bank, under the crafty management of Nicholas Biddle and Co., is now converted
into the Custom house for the Port of Philadelphia.
Wall street, New York, is, next to Broadway, the
most interesting thoroughfare in the city. Here are
many banks, some perhaps not so substantial as the
granite houses in which they carry on their business,
but there is an air of wealth and prosperity in it
from top to bottom. 60
As there is little metallic currency in circulation
in America, and nothing to be seen but their filthy
rags in the shape of dollar notes, a large branch of
the business of this street consists in exchanging
notes for the public, and forcing into circulation as
many thousand dollars as they can of the particular
bank each broker is interested in.
I used to look in at the windows and see the gentlemen with long scissors cutting and clipping the
quires of new pretty pictures, and making them into
bundles. It was some time before these were discovered to be new bank notes, on which they were
intent upon raising the wind! They were destined
for some exchange operation, that should relieve the
parties ; for although the banks of the Empire state
enjoy a confidence and reputation unknown in the
other and remoter parts, yet even here, in New York,
after a year or two spent in Lombard-street, you
cannot avoid seeing that all is false and hollow.
There is not the coin in the country to pay more
than one shilling in the pound upon the paper circulation of America, and who will the loss fall upon
ultimately but upon the industrious and productive
classes ? It is a great object to have your bank
notes of the most attractive and newest pattern of
engraving, as flashy and ornamental as possible;
and in justice to the rising arts in America, it must
be conceded to them, that if most things are but
indifferently done, this of bank note engraving and FOUNTAINS.
printing cannot be surpassed in London itself. It is
evidently a thriving trade; and, being well paid, naturally commands the best workmen. Some of the specimens are beautiful, although you are sure to suffer
somehow or other in having anything to do with them.
Nothing is more wanting than a general law through
the States prohibiting the issue of all promissory
notes under five dollars. Some of their coin would
then be visible; and the numerous national mints,
kept up at the expense of the federal government,
and now doing nothing, a perfect sinecure, would
then have a chance of earning their salaries, and the
poor people would cease to be plundered.
Who would have supposed that, in the city of
New York, with all their well-known vulgarity and
want of taste, they would have excelled us in the
article of fountains and jets d'eau ? and yet it is really
the case. Our jets in Trafalgar-square are very
sorry concerns compared with those in the Park at
New York; for this simple reason, that instead of a
very short column of water, as in Trafalgar square,
three or four feet high, in the Park at New York
the Americans have erected a" three-inch pipe, and
the prodigious quantity of water thus enabled to
ascend into the air some thirty or thirty-six feet, has
a grand and charming effect, especially when playing
during a heat little inferior to the burning fiery climate of Senegal. But as so large a conductor as a
three-inch pipe would require too large a supply of
i 62
water, the jets only play at short intervals, which
is rather an advantage than otherwise.
But if the Americans are behind the rest of the
world in architectural knowledge, they certainly are
not second to any nation in naval architecture. Their
ships are perfect models, especially the fifty liners,
as they are termed, sailing at fixed days, as regular
as mail-coaches, for Liverpool, London, and Havre.
They are built as strong as wood and iron can make
them; and their speed, form, and decorations, as well
as their comfort and accommodations, stamp them at
once as the finest ships that swim the ocean. They
are generally 1,000 tons burthen each, and may be
seen at the foot of Wall street every day arriving or
departing, receiving or discharging cargo. Not much
inferior to these are the packet-ships, all along the
shore, in the trade to Charleston, Savannah, Mobile,
or New Orleans. They are ships generally of 500,
600, or 700 tons, and are proofs of the importance of
the coasting-trade, for they are constantly sailing to
and fro. The cheapness and abundance of sound
American timber has been the prime cause of the
excellence of their ships. In England we have not
got the timber, and if we had we could not afford to
put it in in such liberal abundance as the American
I went on board one of the new liners; she was
ready for sea in ninety days from the day her keel
was laid down, and cost 16/. sterling, per register SHIPS  OF  NEW BRUNSWICK.
ton, everything included, except provisions, and
sheathed with Muntz's patent metal. Now the same
ship could not be built at Blackwall within fifty per
cent, of this price, and yet the Americans are crying
out every day, and making constant complaints in
their newspapers, of being undersailed by the British,
and of the regular annual increase of British tonnage
in the American waters, carrying cotton, tobacco,
turpentine, and such like bulky cargoes, cheaper than
they can do it. How is this ? In the first place
seamen's wages are lower in English vessels; but
the grand reason is, that these cheap vessels are built
in New Brunswick. They take a cargo of lumber
to a southern market, and then, calling at either of
the four principal cotton ports, take a cargo of cotton
direct to Liverpool, at the same freight that the
Americans can take it to New York.*
Ship-building should therefore be encouraged at
St John's, N.B., and there is room for twenty ships
additional at this moment to be placed on the stocks
there of 1,000 tons each, especially if they could
be done at a few pounds per ton lower than the New
* In the year 1844, ending 30th June, the vessels which, entered
the ports of the United States were as follows ; viz.:
American       -       - 8,148
British        ... 5,030
Hanseatic        -       - 155
Swedish      -       -       - 110
French    - 55
York builders. The ships would be taken in shares,
and the bird's-eye maple, rosewood, gilding, and
satinwood, with other gimcracks, being dispensed
with, there is little doubt they might be completed
with a profit to the builders for about twelve guineas
per ton, everything complete, except provisions.
The guard-ship at New York is the | North Carolina,' 74, a very fine ship, built at Philadelphia in
1820, and consequently twenty-five years old. She
is about the size and weight of metal of our new
80's, and would be an ugly customer alongside any
of our old 74's. She is moored very near to the
shore, and is a proof that the largest ships have no
difficulty in coming up close to the city.
I was rather disappointed to hear that the Temperance plan had not yet been introduced in this
fine line-of-battle ship, because I had been informed
that in the i Cumberland,' first-class frigate, it had
been tried with perfect success; every person in that
vessel, from the first lieutenant downwards, being a
total abstinence man, and consequently receiving the
Government equivalent of threepence per day, in lieu
of grog. It is said that in two years more the probability is that the serving out of rum for sailors'
rations on board ships of war will be entirely discontinued, as it may be said to be already effected in all
the merchant and whaling ships of the Union.
Here would be a mighty reform, could it be carried out in the British navy; and surely the weather TEMPERANCE  SHIPS  OF  WAR.
on the coast of America, during their long and seyere
winters, from the Bay of Fundy to Cape Hatteras, is
as bad as it is in any part of the world; and if a pot
of hot coffee or cocoa, after reefing topsails in a
stormy night, will satisfy an American sailor, why
should it not be good enough for our English tars,
whose vigorous constitutions and broad shoulders less
require any stimulus.
But if this plan of universal temperance has not
yet been thoroughly organized in the American army
and navy, there is to every reflecting Englishman
great satisfaction in observing that by a late Act of
Congress flogging has been entirely abolished in
American ships, as well in those belonging to the
State as in those belonging to the merchant service.
It would have been more agreeable, perhaps, if Great
Britain had been foremost in this just work, but it is
an example that must soon be followed by our own
legislature; for nothing can be more impolitic on our
parts than to leave anything to be envied by either
British sailors or British colonists in the laws, customs, or institutions of our Republican neighbours;
but, on the contrary, it should be the aim in
Downing street, if possible, to make everything
British or Canadian the envy of the Americans !
When we see the rate of seamen's wages in
America—fifteen dollars per month—it is no wonder
that there is no scarcity of hands to man their ships:
for by a late return to Congress it came out, that ■' "$'--'-J* "    .     " -     L
out of 109,000 men and boys employed in the
fisheries, rivers, canals, merchant ships, and navy
of the United States, 100,000 were foreigners, that
is, British, and only 9,000 Americans!
I met with an American traveller who had been
in England, and had gone on board the | Victory,'
at Portsmouth, and described to me the brass plate,
&c, on the spot where Nelson fell. He looked on
the i Victory I as a very small vessel, and stated
that, alongside of their 'Ohio,' 74, she would only
have appeared like a frigate! This is not only
a specimen of American boasting, but American
ignorance, two qualities always found together. But
it is the same all day long, from morn to dewy eve,
nothing but the same tune—American bragging;
all their flies are elephants; just as the village of
Jersey is called a city, and the little grass plot round
the City Hall in New York is called " the Park,"—
an enclosure about the size of Leicester square in
London. In like manner, the numerous little boys'
schools scattered over the country, where the dirty-
nosed urchins are whipped, or ought to be, once a
week, are all designated colleges. Thus there are
more colleges and universities, so called, in America,
than throughout Europe; but in the item of professors they are not so rich, there being comparatively very few eminent or learned men in the
United States. Indeed, there is not much encouragement for them, and the principal branch of study FEW LEARNED MEN.
all through the country is divinity; but in the fixed
sciences, where there is no guessing and no uncertainties, the number of great names in America is
very small. Blumenbach and Bezel, Arago and
Faraday, Liebig and Misofanti of Bologna, who is
master of forty-two languages, with the galaxy of
great names at this time in Europe, are not to be
looked for in the States, and never will be while it
continues a democracy. There exists no such thing
as a learned leisure, except in divinity; of which they
are very fond, if one may judge from the number of
schools and colleges of divinity scattered all over the
The habits of temperance, even in New York, have
brought into existence many trades, to an extent that
would hardly be credible elsewhere. As the people
have abandoned ardent spirits, and in a great measure even ale and porter, something must be had as
a substitute: and as wine is out of the question, as
much as it is out of the reach of the industrious
classes, they have hit upon a number of drinks,
warranted not to intoxicate, such as sarsaparilla beer,
and root beer, which are sold at every corner of the
streets; whilst the ginger-beer makers drive their
innocent commodity about the streets, mostly four-
in-hand, in a very flashy style, sufficiently indicative
of the prosperous nature of their craft.
Waggon loads of ice-cream may be seen beset by
the boys and girls in the street, all having in the hot 68
months their halfpenny worth of strawberry or vanilla : nor are the glasses much smaller, or the cream
inferior to those of Farrance or Gunter at twelve or
twenty times the price. Owing also to an entire
absence of duty on green fruit brought in bulk from
foreign countries, pine apples and plantains are to be
seen at every corner of the streets of New York;
and whilst you see such a profusion of them around
you, and you are suffering at the time all the pangs
of the horrid heat, you cannot help fancying yourself really in the tropics, till you are awakened from
your reverie by seeing a long succession of ice-carts,
full of large blocks of ice from the Rockland lake,
driving along the streets, selling their weeping and
evanescent loads at one shilling per hundred-weight!
When one sees blocks of ice carried through every
part of the town like blocks of stone, hot as it may
be, one feels convinced there is no mistake here ; and
that, after all, we really are in Russia, notwithstanding the short burning summer and the aforesaid festoons of ananas and bananas !
Talking of American ignorance, one of their professors—and he had not the excuse of being a divi-
nity professor, generally the worst informed of all—
noticed to me that we English were not a manufacturing country ; % you are, no doubt," he added, " a
great commercial people, but you don't figure as
manufacturers? I replied that I must have, been
labouring, then, under a great mistake all my life, SHOCKING IGNORANCE.
for I had always thought, if there was any one thing
for which my country was justly celebrated, it was
for the greatness and immense value of our manufactures. "Well," said he, "as far as iron and steel go,
I think you are 'first-rate \ in England, and get
along better than any other nation that I know of:
but when I admit that I can go no farther. It is
France that is the great manufacturing nation of the
globe!" "What do you think, then," I inquired,
" about cotton, of which, as an American, you ought to
know something." fj Yes," says he, " you take more of
our cotton, no doubt, than all the rest of the world
put together; but then you merely spin it into yarn
for other nations to work up into those beautiful
tissues and tasty fabrics that my wife and daughters
are constantly buying for new dresses. Look at the
beautiful shoes, the charming gloves, the bonnets
and millinery which we receive every week from
Paris, besides those beautiful Indiennes for our ladies'
dresses, which you do not know even how to make
in England." Seeing that this professor's ignorance
was so lamentable and profound (oh, ye blind guides),
I really disdained the trouble of convincing him.
It was like an elderly lady in one of the steamers :
she said she should like to have visited England once
in her life, if it were only to have visited UAuburn"
which must be a sweet pretty place, according to
Goldsmith's description of it—
" Sweet Auburn ! loveliest village of the plain." 7D
" Ah I" said the lady, in a deep lachrymose tone,
"we have many Auburns in America, but I am
afraid none of them come up to yours."
I replied that there was no such place in England
as Auburn, and it was the mere creation of the poet's
fancy; but her mind having dwelt for many years
on the reality of Auburn, she could with great difficulty believe me, and I rather think I spoiled for the
remainder of her short life one of 8 the greenest spots
in memory's waste."
This is like the old story of the woman and her
sailor son. She knew very well all about the mountains of sugar, and rivers of rum in the Indies, but
die would not believe a word when he told her of
the flying fish!
The horrid weather was getting more tolerable.
What would have been, and ought to have been,
spring in any other country, was still winter on one
side of the street, and summer on the other, only
forty degrees difference of temperature between the
north side of the street and the south.
A friend proposed a drive to Jamaica in Long
Island, and off we started. New York possesses
many pretty suburbs, of which those in Long Island
and Staten Island are decidedly the best; whilst the
opposite shore of the North or Hudson River only
presents Jersey city, as the village is pompously
called, and a place called Hoboken, rather pretty,
but which they are taking infinite pains to spoil and MULBERRIES  AND  NEW  CITIES  ON  PAPER.     71
ruin. We drove across the excellent ferry previously
alluded to at Brooklyn, and soon found ourselves on
the sandy roads of Long Island, which is represented
as a fertile and productive district, though we could
see nothing but bush, bad roads, wooden fences, and
houses. It must be a horrid place in winter. After
proceeding some miles from the ferry, my friend
pointed out where many hundred fools had thrown
away their own or their creditors' money in the purchase of lots of building land to form another large
city to be called East New York! This was about
1837, as I understood, or eight or nine years ago;
when all persons were mad, even amongst this shrewd
and sagacious people, giving thousands of dollars for
a piece of ground hardly large enough to swing a cat
in, expecting to sell it to somebody still madder at
forty or fifty per cent, advance in the course of
twenty-four hours! It was about the same period
that this thinking people became suddenly convinced
that to make a fortune it was only necessary to purchase a certain number of plants of the " morus mul-
ticaulis," or mulberry from the Philippine Islands; as
silk was to be in future, next to cotton, the great and
important item of American export. But the mulberry speculation, like the East New York and other
manias, all fell to the ground; and the poor deluded
dupes awoke from their dreams to ruined fortunes,
and to hopes destroyed. B
New* England—Transcendentalists—Their Doctrines—Evils of
Protecting Tariff—Probable Bankruptcy of Manufacturers-
Disasters in Steamboats—Their Accommodations—Detestable
Climate of the States—Cheap Board and Lodging—Hotels—Land
Bargains—Rome and Syracuse—Railway Travelling Slow and
Wearisome—Tin Roofing recommended—Rochester, Bankrupt
Millers—Palls of the Genessee—Americans a Gloomy People—
British Flag in Canada.
Previous to making the western tour I made a
short excursion to Boston to see a friend off to England by one of Cunard's line of steamers. Our trip
was partly by sea and partly by land. The boats on
this line are truly magnificent; but, though occasionally subject to a little rough weather in Long Island Sound, they are not exactly cut out for a storm
at sea, and all classes of Americans must allow that
John Bull beats them hollow in sea-going steamers.
The private boats belonging to London and Liverpool, and sailing the ocean, amount, in 1845, to
100,000 tons; without reckoning any of the superb
vessels steaming down the Red Sea to Aden and
Bombay, which, of course, have been navigated round TRANSCENDENTALISTS. 73
the Cape of Good Hope, or East Cape, the name it
is better known by amongst nautical men in America.
I attended the Episcopal Church in Boston, whilst
my friend visited the Unitarian Church, for the
Unitarians are a very large and respectable sect
throughout the State of Massachusetts. The preacher
made a great impression on my friend by his bold and
fearless exposure of the cant and superstition of his
countrymen, the New Englanders; and he gave me the
heads of the discourse as much as possible in the very
words of the minister, who threw in great eloquence
and earnestness to his address.*    I am not sure if I
fli   I
* The reverend gentleman's argument ran as follows :—
1st. Mail is by nature a religious being. The religious sentiment
in him is universal, and as natural to him as sight or hearing. By
means of this religious sentiment he communicates with the spiritual world. But when this sentiment has become perverted, or
mingled with baser elements, it has given birth to various historical
religions, to use the preacher's words, Christianity among the rest.
Its legitimate and purified product is absolute religion, which means
love to man and love to God.
2ndly. All men are more or less inspired, according to the intensity of the religious sentiment. No miracles are necessary, nor
any creeds.
3rdly. .With reference to Christianity, there is no doubt that
Jesus was superior to all other men, had most of the religious sentiment, and was the most of an inspired man that the world ever
saw ; his life was consistent, beautiful, and holy ; his precepts wise
and good, though the substance of them had been uttered before,
but never so variously and delightfully applied to practical uses.
As a teacher and model he is unrivalled. But the story of Jesus is
incredible and absurd ; a mixture of the legendary, the mythical,
and the true ; a good deal arising out of the love and admiration
which he rightfully awakened among his followers, and also a good
H 74
am pleasing all readers by giving a specimen of what
is called by Americans transcendentalism in religion;
but it is merely to show the freedom with which
serious subjects are handled by their best and most
popular preachers, especially in that section of the
States called New England, which is generally considered the model portion of the United States in education, morals, and religion; and where all licences
deal the result of the fanatical expectation of a Messiah, which
happened, at that period, to be so current among the Jews.
4thly. The Bible is the greatest of all books ; and it contains
more of absolute religion than any other book. But the common
notion of it as divine, miraculous, or infallible, is false and foolish.
A portion of it is no doubt inspired, in the sense before referred to,
in different degrees ; whilst other portions are absurd, legendary,
and incredible.
5thly. The true idea of the Church is, Christ the model man and
teacher, and men and women listening to his instruction, and observing his life. What is called the Church has answered important purposes, but it would be difficult to say whether it has done
most good or most harm.   The true Church is yet to come.
In another part of his discourse on superstition the preacher exclaimed, " But why go back to the patriarchs ? Do we not live in
New England and the nineteenth century, and have we no superstition ? Our books of theology, our houses and churches, are full
of it. When a man fears God more than he loves him ; when he
forsakes reason, conscience, and love ; the still small voice of God
in the heart, and is satisfied with authority, tradition, and expediency, then is he superstitious. We call out against those who in
an age of darkness were made to pass through the fire, but what
shall we say to those who now, in an age of light, systematically
degrade the fairest gifts of man ; who make life darkness, death
despair, the world a desert, and God an ugly fiend, who made the
mass of men for utter wretchedness, death, and eternal hell! Is
not all this superstition ? " EVILS OF  PROTECTING  TARIFFS.
for the retailing of intoxicating liquors are steadily
I could not spare the time to go over to Lowell,
alike celebrated for its factory girls and their parasols.
This is no doubt a very desirable state of things, but
I am afraid it is merely accidental and temporary,
and rather an episode in the history of the manufactures of the New England States, than to be regarded
as the natural superiority of the American factories
over those of Lancashire.    The day is coming when
the workers of cotton in Lowell will be no better off
than the workers in shoes in Lynn, or the cunning in
clocks.    The parasols will have to be furled and left
at home.    The unnatural propping up of the manufacturing system through the silly tariff of 1842 lias
made many fortunes, especially in the New England
States; but the repeal of said act, which is certain,
sooner or later, and perhaps the very session now
commencing, will make as many bankrupts.    The
cotton-trade will be as good after the repeal of the
tariff as it is now, but those who have been leaning
on the support of those prohibitory duties will find,
as soon as such support is withdrawn, that they must
become insolvent, unless they evince the energy of
humbler manufacturers in other departments, and are
determined to undersell the world; for, with unlimited water-power, the raw material at their door, and
bread and meat for next to nothing, who can beat a 16
Bostonian at making calico ? So that, after all, we
see that these Lowell parasols have been paid for by
the agricultural States, by the gallants of the
southern and western country, without their knowing
it, and without acknowledgment on the part of the
young ladies of the factories. But all that must be
changed; it is absurd to suppose that the planters of
New Orleans and Mobile should have to contribute
in every article they require at the store to the
already overgrown fortunes of the New England
manufacturers, who have been boasting, the last three
years and upwards, that they have been clearing
twenty-five per cent profit on their capitals employed,
whilst all the articles produced by the planters, particularly cotton, have been gradually getting lower
and lower in price; and even yet, cotton has not seen
its lowest. So that it will be one good thing done
by southern preponderance in the national councils of
the Union, that the tariff is to be reduced to a
revenue standard.
The American legislators should observe, that
every session the Parliament of Great Britain is advancing in the free-trade principle by removing duties
on imports; and they should recollect that it is now
well established, that it is an unchangeable law of
human nature that the real interests of all nations
are identical. No manufacturing country wants
paupers  for customers:  but, on the  contrary,  all DISASTERS IN  STEAM-BOATS.
nations find it for their advantage that all the others
should flourish—all derive benefit from unrestricted
intercourse, free exchange, peace, and justice.
We were now steaming up the beautiful river
Hudson, on our way to Albany, at the rate of fifteen
miles an hour, with two or three hundred passengers
—a hundred more or less can hardly be distinguished
in these capacious vessels. A dreadful accident had
occurred but a few days before by the striking on a
rock of the steamer * Swallow,' opposite the town, or
city (I beg its pardon), called Hudson, by which
many passengers were drowned; and it was truly
a melancholy sight to see the wreck lying broadside
on the rock. It was the fault of the pilot: for the
captain, it appears, has nothing to do with the care
of the navigation, but every boat is left in the charge
of a pilot, who sits up aloft near the head or bows
of the vessel, in a neat little glass office, monarch of
all he surveys, and by means of his only companion
—a large wheel—he steers the ship in safety. Unlike our steamers, where the helmsman always stands
at the stern, and can see nothing but the passengers
hats, the American steersman always occupies an elevated little room on the top deck, close to the head
of the vessel, and enjoys an uninterrupted sight of
everything before him and around him; and as he
is shut in with the windows of his little office, up or
down according to the state of the weather, nobody
can talk to him or interfere with him, and nobody 78
scarcely knows that there is such a being on board.
He has two, or sometimes three, little bells that ring
in the engine-room, by which he communicates his
orders to the engineer, such as 1 Go on," j Back
astern," I Easy," § Stop her," &c.
The lowest room in the steamer is the dining-
room, a long and spacious saloon, communicating
with the kitchen on deck, through a sort of spout,
by which the dishes are sent hot from the fire. The
deck over the saloon contains the ladies' cabin, a
large and handsomely furnished place, in which a
hundred ladies might sit or lounge without being
at all crowded; the remainder of this deck is for
promenading fore and aft all through the vessel; and
you see in gilt letters over various rooms on each
side—I Captain's room," | Clerk's office," jf| Barber's
shop," I Bar," for the sale of fruit and drinks; and
very often may be seen three or four well-dressed
itinerant merchants, who, in the true spirit of American enterprise, as they are going a journey of
business, begin at the beginning, and, whether it be
umbrellas, type for marking linen, &c, they manage
to do a little trade, and pay their current expenses
by selling their respective wares amongst the pas
After looking a little about me at Albany, which
is the county town as we should call it, or capital of
the State of New York, I took the ears, as the Americans say, and pushed on to a nice quiet supper and CHEAP BOARD AND LODGING.
glass of brilliant pale ale at the town of Schenectady.
I enjoyed a good bed at the inn, and in the morning,
when I was dressing within, it was snowing without.
Talk of an English winter, here we were in the
month of May and the weather like Christmas, in a
latitude corresponding to Tuscany and Spain. It
could not be the great elevation of the country,
either; for the town of Schenectady is rather flat and
low, and very little raised above the tide-waters of
the Hudson. The fact is, the American climate is
thoroughly and irredeemably bad—the very worst in
the world—that is within the temperate zone; and I
conceive nothing can make up for this dreadful and
important defect.
Whilst enjoying mine ease in mine inn, more from
contrast with the weather than any intrinsic excellence, I did not feel very impatient to go from my
warm room into the snow ; but here is another city,
as they call it, a village of six thousand inhabitants,
and yet boasting of ten churches, four banks, and
twenty hotels! The number of hotels will naturally
surprise Englishmen, because this abundance is universal, however small the city, town, or village:
they swarm everywhere, just like doctors and lawyers. The case is, the American people have no
homes; there is a dinner provided, for instance, at
each of these twenty hotels of Schenectady, and all
the adult male population of the place, and a great
part of the females too, agreed with Mr Boniface, 80
the keeper of the hotel, for partial board at so much
per month; sixpence per head per meal is a very
common rate of payment up the country; and families, even with three or four children, find this
system of assembling for their three meals cheaper
than keeping servants and cooking at home, buying
fuel, &c. The lowest rate of board, including lodging, that I have ever met with was at a place in
Indiana, where a person may obtain both at the low
price of four shillings per week, or one dollar; but
I was to recollect that this did not include chicken
fixings; but for fifteen dollars per month, or fourteen shillings per week, a good bed room and three
abundant meals daily may be had in any of these
cities of the west,—and at a really respectable hotel.
It is the numbers alone which enable them to do
this, for they usually pay excessively high rents, and
can reckon on nothing coming in the way of profit
on wine and spirits, which is so large an item in the
calculations of English innkeepers. The traveller is
also saved all gratuities to servants. This abominable
English custom would not be tolerated a day in
Through various little places along the valley of
the Mohawk I arrived at the Little Falls, which is
a pretty place; and, from its unlimited water-power,
is sure to maintain its manufacturing importance, as
a great deal of it is still unemployed and available to
new comers. LAND BARGAINS.
After stopping and admiring this singular little
spot of perfect wildness, I proceeded to Utica for the
night; which, after the numerous little places, appeared a large and populous town of about fifteen
thousand inhabitants. I had often in another part
of the world observed the word | Utica | branded
on flour barrels; and it now appeared that the town
was the centre of a large agricultural country, and
that grist mills was a favourite speculation of the
inhabitants. I was the more surprised, therefore, to
recollect having been teased in New York to buy a
farm in the neighbourhood of Utica, at a very low
price; the copy of the advertisement referring to this
said farm I thought worth adding in a note below.*
As I had never yet seen any farm in America that
I would have taken as a gift, with the condition of
making it my residence, it was not very likely that I
should be solicitous to encounter the half-thawed
mud of Herkimer county in particular, to examine
this extraordinary bargain.
We passed through Borne without knowing it,
and soon arrived at Syracuse; a considerable town,
* LOOK at THIS —160 ACRES of GOOD LAND, water
right, and all on a river for 130 dollars or less, and believed to be
worth 1,000 dollars—a fortune, the title from the State of New
York. Necessity compels the owner to give this away. Any
man, woman, or child, who has that amount can never meet with
such a bargain ; half of the lot can be had. Call and make an
offer—it must be sold—at No. 90 Nassau street, 2nd floor. Also,
twenty farms from 400 dollars and upwards. 19 2is* 82
with the usual liberal supply of banks, churches, and
hotels. This is the most celebrated place in the State
of New York for the manufacture of salt, of which
immense quantities are constantly being despatched
to all corners of the country. Not being particularly
enamoured, however, of salt marshes, I joined the
same train, and preferred resting for the remainder
of the day at Auburn, twenty-six miles further.
Twenty-six miles is nothing on an English railroad,
but in America it is quite far enough to weary and
fatigue you after fifty-three miles of previous travelling.
The line is a single line, with occasional turn-outs,
which cause enormous delays of waiting; and the road,
not being enclosed, seems to be the favourite resting-
place for cattle, who will persist on going and filling
themselves in the sloppy pastures, and then coming
to the high and dry railroad, to lie down and chew
the cud. Then there is such a hollobaloo to make
the cows get up and run off the rails; so that when
you take out your watch at the end of your journey,
you find that you have just travelled at the rate of
nine miles and a half to ten miles an hour, including
stoppages! I have constantly observed through the
States, how careless the constructors of their lines
are of the safety and convenience of the passengers;
within an inch or two of a precipice is just the same
to them, so as they can save a few yards, not of rails,
but of what we should call hoop-iron, screwed on to >in
the wooden rails. This recklessness I observed first
on leaving Syracuse for Auburn, and afterwards on
the railroad from Lewistown to Niagara Falls.
Arrived at Auburn, pretty well tired of railroad
travelling, at the rate of ten miles an hour. This
place had been represented to me as a large, handsome, and important town in the midst of the lakes,
abounding in trout, &c. &c. &c. I found it an excessively dull place, without trade and without
money; and could not by any possibility exist, were
it not for the little circulation of cash caused by
keeping here about seven hundred convicts in the
State prison, the daily labour of whom is let out, by
public tender, at so much per head for the contractor
to make the best he can of; they are therefore made
to work hard, which is perhaps the greatest alleviation to their sentence, whilst their labour is more
productive than in our penal colonies, and amply
repays the cost of their maintenance. The presence
of this American Newgate in c Sweet' Auburn
throws a damp over the place, which, already dull
and gloomy from want of trade, does not seem to
promise to make much progress. The Court-house
is a pretty object, and looks very well, with its cupola
covered over with tin plates. I cannot help thinking
that this method of covering steeples of churches~and
cupolas of other buildings might be tried in England
and Scotland. After leaving this dull village of
Auburn the railroad crosses the Cayuga Lake, on a ra
rickety sort of wooden viaduct, nearly two miles
long, and which you feel glad to get to the end of.
After passing another large lake, called Seneca, and
the village of Geneva, which is a tolerably pretty
place with ten churches, three banks, two newspapers, and about 2,500 inhabitants (!), you arrive at
Canandaigua, built on the edge of the lake of the
same name. The Americans look upon this locality
of Canandaigua as the ne plus ultra of everything
sublime and beautiful, and the town is constantly
described in their guide-books as presenting the most
delightful prospects in the world; but, as our readers
are long since aware that their flies are all elephants,
a discount of full 75 per cent, must be taken off from
every American description of the interior of his
native State. After seven hours' weary travelling by
rail we had accomplished seventy miles, and arrived
at what we looked upon as the end of our journey
for the present, the town of Rochester, which is a
bustling and flourishing place near the banks of Lake
Ontario. It is the growth of little more than twenty
years, and already contains a population of 20,000
persons. This rapid increase has been owing to the
cataract in the very centre of the town, which is
powerful enough to turn a hundred mills; and
Rochester, in consequence, has become one of the
most important flour-markets in the States. Indeed,
these falls of the Grenessee river, beside their immense
utility and value, are exceedingly fine and imposing; FALLS  OF  THE  GENESSEE.
like all falls where there is great depth and plenty of
water, and no person of common feeling, or with a
grain of taste, can tear himself away from such a
scene as this till he is wet through with the spray, or
reminded by some thundering bell that it is twelve
o'clock, and he must run to eat his dinner at the
public table, whether ready for it or not. I could
not help regarding the town of Rochester with some
degree of favour, everything was new and yet substantial, and the banks had never failed, a statement
that could hardly be made of any town of equal size
out of the State of New York. It was not thought,
however, that the flour business was a good one, as a
great many of the mill-owners were known to have
compounded. But after all, the go a-head principle
of America, though eminently rife even in Rochester,
is not attended with so many marks of the false and
hollow as are to be seen in other places. The inhabitants were even better-looking and healthier, and
the rapid departure of winter gave a cheerfulness to
everything around, except the dull and gloomy
American, who rarely smiles and never sings, but is
always cogitating; and, by chewing great quantities
of tobacco almost without knowing it, he fancies his
wits will be sharpened, and some lucky thought will
occur to him by which he can make ten or twenty
dollars. As the American towns are so nearly alike,
and I had enough of railway travelling for the present,
instead of taking the usual route to Buffalo, I pre-
»'! 86
IIH'i ■
ferred driving down to the steam-boat, and having a
cruise on Lake Ontario, looking once more on that
abhorred flag on the Canadian shore,
" That has brav'd a thousand years,
The battle and the breeze !"
The drive from the town down to the embarking
place is short, but highly picturesque and beautiful;
and there was the black steamer in the deep stillness
a hundred feet below the road, nigroque simillima
cygno, whilst close behind her were the glorious and
foaming Falls glittering in the last rays of the setting
sun. It was one of those soft hours that melt the
heart of the worn traveller, when nothing satisfies
him but the wonderful works of God, and when he
cannot help inwardly exclaiming, for his Ave Maria,
(i Goodness and mercy have followed me all the days
of my life!"     "   J     ' f A   VISIT    TO   CANADA.
Lake Ontario—Falls of Niagara—Clifton Hotel—Heavy Shower—
Toronto and Hamilton good Towns—Lower Canada, or Canada
East, must be avoided, not adapted to English Farmers—Too
cold—Emigrants should not stop till they reach Toronto or
Hamilton in Canada West, or Upper Canada, as it used to be
called—Superior to all other Colonies—No Failure of Crops—
Near England, and Passage cheap—Land ought to be reduced to
One Dollar per Acre, and no Credit—Few Taxes—Loyal People
—Quebec and Montreal—Large Population—Healthy and Happy
Colony—Too many Irish—Far better than any of the Newgate
Colonies of Australia—Superior to the United States, where
Englishman cannot sell Land—Free and Popular Government
—Cattle, Horses, and Sheep—Regret at leaving Canada.
During the night we had crossed the Lake Ontario,
and at daylight found ourselves at anchor at Queens-
town, close to Brock's Monument in the River
" Niagara," with the shores of the two great rival
nations within half a mile of each other. It formed
no part of my plan to visit the Grand Falls on this
occasion, but I could not resist the opportunity, as
we were only twelve miles off, and almost within the
noise of their thunder, whilst the entire river was,
gurgling and bubbling, even at this distance, plainly LAKE  ONTARIO.
telling of the fearful leap it had taken about two
hours before it arrived at Queenstown, and from
which it was now recovering. The mighty River St
Lawrence, or Niagara, as it is called for twenty miles
between the lower lakes, pours more fresh water into
the ocean than any other river of the globe, although
it is only fourth or fifth in point of length.
The train was off to the Falls on the American
side, and it was about the worst twelve miles of railway travelling I ever experienced, and in some parts
positively dangerous, passing by precipices that might
easily have been avoided, and on the other side going
so close to the river bank, and the yawning abyss
about one hundred and eighty feet below, that a
young English lady near me was compelled to shut
her eyes, she was so agitated, till we arrived in the
village and stopped at the Cataract Hotel, the best
American house, for breakfast.
We had caught a glimpse of the glorious Falls
from an opening in the forest, whilst the train was
passing, but nothing could stop us, immediately we
alighted from the carriages, from hastening to the
best and favourite spot for viewing this awful and
stupendous sight. The American side, though far
inferior to the Canadian in the importance of the
Falls, offers in the early morning the pleasing sight
of a constant and noble rainbow, perfect in every part,
stretching from side to side, and thus we have the
sublime and beautiful at the same moment.    A visit, NIAGARA.
for the first time, to the terrific scene of Niagara is an
era in a person's life, and can never be forgotten by
any distance of time or place.
The Neapolitans have a familiar saying, '" See
Naples and die," meaning, don't die before you
have seen Naples; but it might much better be
said, See Niagara and die, for nothing exists in
this world of wonders half so overwhelming as this
fearful scene. I used often to think, in travelling
to Piedmont, if a man could not learn a lesson of
humility between Scarena and Limone, amidst the
mighty maritime Alps, he could learn it nowhere;
but since seeing Niagara, I think the lesson of
shrinking into nothing can nowhere be so well
enforced as # beneath this living and liquid Alps. It
is only a fortnight's trip from Liverpool to Niagara,
by steam to Boston, where there is a railroad all
the way, through Albany, to the Falls; and any time
during the four months of May, June, July, and
August, would do to start in. The Clifton House*
on the British side, is one of the best hotels to be
found in any country; and it is a wonder how so
many and such splendid establishments can be
maintained during so short a season, as the summer
in this part of America can hardly be said to endure
more than three months. On another occasion,
when I visited the Falls later in the year—it was
on a Sunday—I reckoned there were one thousand
strangers and visitors on the Canadian side alone, 90
to view the Giant Horse-shoe Fall. This is a
great number for so thinly-peopled a district; and
in the visitors' book of names, besides the signatures
of Lord Durham and Lord Morpeth, there are
persons from Calcutta and Ceylon, the Dweller
from Mesopotamia,* and the remotest countries of
the world. The Clifton Hotel has about seventy
windows looking on.the smoking cauldron, and on
the top of the building there is an elegant and commanding Belvidere, from which you enjoy a panoramic view of the rapids above the Falls, and the
wide expanse of river, and Navy Island, together
with the scene of the |Caroline' American steamboat, which was cut out by the British from her
moorings, and sent down the Falls; but it would be
almost impossible for any large vessel to arrive at
the Falls without first being broken into ten thousand pieces by the rocks above.
Our open carriage, on returning to the steamer at
Queenstown, drove through Drummondville in a
heavy shower of rain, during which we all put up
our umbrellas, when the driver told us it was not
raining, and nothing but the spray from the Falls
carried in that direction by the wind; and we afterwards learned at Toronto, forty miles off, that the
white cloud above the Cataract of Niagara is seen
every clear morning from that city!    A Londoner
would think it a grand sight to see the River Thames
fall from the top of the monument; but Niagara is
a collection of two hundred rivers as large as the
Thames, flowing into those four interior seas called
Erie, Huron, Michigan, and Superior, the smallest
of which is large enough to contain all England and
Wales! We joined a pretty English steamer at
Queenstown to ran early dinner, and in the evening,
after thirty miles of lake-sailing, we landed at
Hamilton, a very thriving, well-situated, but
drunken town, at the head of Lake Ontario, containing about 12,000 inhabitants. Everything appeared
rough, prosperous, cheap, and abundant; those who
abstained from ardent spirits were good-looking and
healthy; whilst a four-wheeled chaise and pair of
horses seemed to be universal amongst the population both of town and country. Beef, mutton, and
pork are 2id. to 3d. per lb.; ham, 4d.; bread, the
very best, 6d. the 4lb. loaf; milk, Id. per quart;
fresh butter, 5d. per lb.; very fine green tea, 2s. per
lb.; and coffee, 6d.; tobacco, 4d. per lb.; clothing
and house rent as cheap or cheaper than in England;
potatoes and lake fish excellent and very cheap;
furniture also very cheap and good.
Hamilton is a good harbour, and well situated
under a ridge, or mountain, as they call it, of limestone, and is the key to a wide and fertile country
to the north and west, and is sure to go on increasing in prosperity.    The soil is superior to anything
41 92
;§sl!i'i *
We have any notion of in Great Britain; and the
young wheat and clover were the finest looking I
had ever seen in my life.
The population of Canada West exceeds 600,000
persons, and is decidedly the most important and
thoroughly English colony under the Crown. Although the cold is severe, and the winter long, they
consider it Italy itself as compared with the Quebec
country, where a pail of water, in less than an
hour, is converted into a solid lump of ice the shape
of the pail, without a drop of moisture remaining;
and the milk is brought to market in bags and sacks,
every separate block of milk being scribed with a
knife or a nail to mark the price; whilst the half-
finished tumblers of brandy and water, left on the
tavern tables overnight, are all solid ice the following
morning! In Canada West matters are not so bad
as this, even in the most severe seasons; and, generally speaking, the soil is drier and better drained
than any of the Western States of the Union. So
that with a view to emigration, if people will emigrate,
which nobody should do if they can anyhow manage
to "get along " at home,—to use an American phrase,
—they had better go at once to Canada West, and
not stop till they reach Toronto or Hamilton. Lower
down the climate puts emigration out of the question.
Settlers might as well go to Russia, or Siberia. The
Home District, Niagara District, Gore District, London District, and Western District, are the five best CANADA WEST  SUPERIOR.
and favourite spots in the Province. There is land
enough for generations to come, and every year a
residence is becoming more and more tolerable. In
any of these districts, if they will build their log*
house high and dry, and take the pledge against in*
toxicating drinks, they cannot fail to lead a happy
life. The settler in Canada West must not expect
to live without work, but he should recollect that
the state of labour is the very condition of enjoy*
ment here, as everywhere else; and if the settler
were compelled to pass his time in the lazy ease of
a dull country life, he would indeed be wretched.
It is nothing but health and labour that prevents
him from moping and having the "blues." The
writer has visited the Cape of Good Hope colony,
and seen the settlers there; they enjoy a rude abundance of the necessaries of life, live in a fine climate;
but, taking it altogether, it does not offer the advantages of Canada West. He has also visited South
Australia or Adelaide, but he gives the preference
much to Western Canada;—he has also examined
both sides of Yan Diemen's Land, the Hobart Town
and Launceston divisions of the island; and, though
the climate is excellent, he prefers Western Canada,
even if there were no convicts in Van Diemen's Land.
The writer has also traversed the whole of Port Philip,
through the Morumbidgee and Bathurst country, to
Sydney, which is undoubtedly a fine sheep country,
but he infinitely prefers the five districts he has named, -5*
in Western Canada, to any and every part of New
South Wales! The settlers are easier and happier
in Canada West, they form a much better society
together, they are kinder towards each other, and
&re not so taken up in squabbles and law as they
are in New South Wales. The writer also visited
New Zealand, to see how emigration was likely to
answer in that distant quarter: and he need hardly
state, though it is a fine soil and climate, New Zealand must not be thought of for twenty years to
come at least, unless the emigrant has any wish to
be made into mince meat by these savages. Therefore Canada West is the best place, and from Toronto and Hamilton, round by St Catharine's to the
grand river as far as London, are all first-rate places,
and farming and farm labourers in any of those quarters will do well. The whole triangular peninsula of
Canada West, situate between the three great lakes
of Ontario, Erie, and Huron, is a rich elevated plain,
containing twenty millions of acres of as fine land as
any in the world; and when the emigrant gets down
to the shores of Lake Erie, in the Talbot District,
to Windsor and Sandwich, and the country opposite
to Michigan, the climate is much warmer, where
tobacco is cultivated with facility, and the wheat is
Though the winters are severe in Canada and
most parts of the United States, yet it is a great
consolation to the farmer that the seasons are re- CHEAP  PASSAGE  TO CANADA.
gular, and that if he sows he will most likely reap;
but at the Cape Colony sometimes, and very often
in Australia, there is a failure of the crops; the four-
pound loaf is sold for twenty pence and two shillings,
till a fleet of ships has brought food for the farmer
from Calcutta, Java, and Valparaiso. Nothing of
this kind of calamity ever happens in Canada West;
and another comfort, the settler has generally got a
friendly neighbour within a ten minutes' walk of
him. The hay harvest seldom or never fails in
Canada; whilst inferior oat hay has often been sold
in Sydney at 20/. per ton, or 10s. and 12s. per truss,
and flour at ten guineas per sack! Besides, Canada
West is an older and more populous country, having
nearly 600,000 inhabitants, which is five times more
populous than Australia; which is, besides, about
the same size as Canada West—that is, in the settled
The summer emigration to this magnificent but
hitherto mismanaged country ought to be one thousand persons every day for one hundred days, not to
arrive at Montreal before the 6th of May, and continue till the first week in August, after which emigration to cease till the following spring. There are
too many Irish already in Canada West, and they do
not make the best settlers, being fond of lingering
about the towns and taking their chance of picking
up a living round the taverns and drinking-houses.
The settlers ought to be confined the first year or 96
two to English and Scotch. The price should be
21. per head for adults, and 20s. each for others,
nothing but bread and water provided ; and
the ships should be Government steamers of the
largest class, which would perform the run out to
Quebec in fourteen days. If land were sold to these
emigrants also at a dollar per acre, or four shillings,
and it ought to be cheaper than in the States, where it
is universally a dollar and a quarter, and the same
system of payment enforced, viz., ready money down
for the whole amount, the fine province of Canada
West would soon muster a million of British subjects, and then the Governor-General should be
raised to a Viceroy, with the power to confer honorary distinctions on wealthy and influential colonists,
his salary doubled, and other popular measures introduced to the farthest limits of the province. The
tariff in Canada is a very bungling affair as it exists
at present, and it might be altered very much to the
advantage of the people and Government; and this
measure ought to be adopted without any loss of
time, as at present it is glaringly absurd and faulty.
No gratuitous emigration should ever be encouraged towards our Canadian possessions; and if parties cannot by frugality and saving manage to raise
21. each for themselves, and 20s. each for their boys
and girls, they would not be likely to make very
good settlers.
Toronto is a large, bustling, cheerful, and wealthy FEW TAXES.
city, containing twenty-four thousand inhabitants,
but it is a sad drunken place, and there is no part of
her Majesty's dominions where the influence of some
Father Mathew is so loudly called for and required.
The trade or importance of the town does not seem
to have suffered by the removal of the seat of Government ; on the contrary, building is going on in all
directions, as indeed it is in Hamilton, a town about
thirty miles further west, to which place there is a
steam-boat every afternoon.
Toronto has an excellent harbour, formed by nature, and enclosing a sheet of water large enough for
some hundred vessels. There are a great many rich
persons living on their fortunes, and in the winter
season the military and better classes of the inhabitants keep up a constant round of visits and festivities. Everything is English, whilst the spacious
streets, substantial houses, and handsome stores, make
it preferable to even Rochester or Albany. The
Americans, however, find fault with the want of
progress made by the Canadian population, alleging
that, with their great advantages of soil and climate,
the absence of taxation, and a strong Government,
they don't go a-head so fast as the Americans; whilst
the Canadians reply that they are more slow but
they are also more sure, and if there is more commercial and manufacturing prosperity apparently in the
opposite town of Rochester, about the same size as
Toronto, there is double the number of monied men,
K as
say worth 20,000/., in the Canadian town that there
is in Rochester. This is a question in which I think
the Torontoites are very likely to be in the right.
It cannot be concealed that there is no love lost
between the rival nations. If the Americans affect
to look down on the Canadians and their sleepiness,
the Canadians, on the other hand, thoroughly despise
the Americans, and all their smart and swindling
tricks to get money, from wooden nutmegs downwards to fortunes in land sales, and other bubbles.
The Canadians appeared to be everywhere almost
ultra-royalists and loyalists; and British connexion
and British rule they never dream of escaping from.
Why should they ? To be swallowed up, of course,
by absorption into the great and increasing union,
which, the faster it grows, the surer it is to be dissolved or undermined. To overthrow it from without would be impossible, and any attempt of that
kind would only strengthen their institutions, and
rally all dissentients for their defence.
I did not on this occasion venture to Montreal, but
looked forward to visit it in a more advanced part of
the summer. We had just received information of
the burning of Quebec, and it is not a pleasant sight
to see a city in distress. v
Quebec, as all my readers know, forms one of the
most striking and most beautiful pictures in America.
It is one of the strongest fortresses in the world next
to Gibraltar, contains 30,000 inhabitants, and in June, LARGE  POPULATION.
July, and August, you may relish either strawberries
or mosquitoes, in singular perfection. The quicksilver here enjoys the singular prerogative of a wider
range than, I believe, in any corner of the earth, it
having been known as high as 103 deg., and in winter
37 deg. below zero, making altogether 140 deg. of
variation. Nevertheless, amongst the French habi-
tans of Quebec there is a stronger feeling of love of
their country than perhaps among any race of men
living, whilst their good humour and constant cheerfulness is better worth to them than all the maxims
of philosophy.
But Montreal is the great capital of Canada, is
double the size of Quebec, and contains 60,000 inhabitants, is the seat of Government and the Legislature,
and one of the most commercial cities in America. I
was not sorry to get back to my snug quarters in
Hamilton, from whence I made sundry excursions
into the bush, and along the plank road. Thinking
I was going to settle among them, I had daily offers
of beautiful farms, more or less improved, some as
low as 10s. per acre, up to 51. and 10/. an acre, whilst
20/. per acre was asked for some suburban spots on
the plank road. The buildings about the towns and
along the roads all seemed warm and substantial,
though it was a pity to see such hundreds of pretty
places for sale, and no buyers! This can only be
owing to a falling off of emigration, occasioned by the
late Canadian troubles, which are not likely to occur 100
again, and therefore the field of enterprise, being so
unlimited in Western Canada, there is no doubt the
roaming portion of our English emigrants will prefer
that country, especially as they can get the English
newspapers only a fortnight old, by way of Boston,
which is a great advantage over every other colony,
and there will be a constant demand for all their
surplus wheat, ashes, and timber.
The total population of the province of Canada
West is nearly 600,000, as follows: viz.—
Natives c
f England
Ireland   -
-   100,000
French Canada
-     14,000
Canada West
-      280,000
United States -
-        -     39,000
Other foreigners    -
This table exhibits rather too large a preponderance of the Irish, and as they are never worth a
potato when they arrive in Canada, no wonder that
so many fine farms remain unsold for want of buyers:
whilst Australia has been receiving rich emigrants
from England, for the last twenty or twenty-five
years, to the extent of some millions of money-capital,
there is more of happiness, ease, and competence, in
the fortunes of the Western Canadians than will be
found in New South Wales for generations to come.
Board and lodging is written up in many of the
towns of Canada at six shillings per week, and there
being a great deal more silver money in the country
than in the States, comparatively speaking, the wages
of labourers and mechanics is better than in the
States. This I became more and more convinced
of in my subsequent trips through the Western
I don't know whether you cannot hear as pure
Irish at Toronto or Hamilton as at the steam-boat
wharves or piers in New York, where you certainly
hear it in perfection; and why, because there are
70,000 sons and daughters of the Emerald Isle domiciled in the Empire City. This accounted for always
seeing the s Nation' newspaper stuck up at the
bookshops for sale, along with c Punch' and e Mrs
Caudle,' after every arrival of the Liverpool steamer.
The Americans, in their excessive hatred of English greatness, power, and justice,—
" She hates that excellence she cannot reach," —
are always looking, every arrival, for the breaking
out of the revolution in Ireland, and the election of
King Daniel to the vacant throne. This is an event,
sooner or later, which they look upon as certain to
happen, and they cannot account for its being so long
delayed. The state of the sister kingdom, and the
overwhelming magnitude of our national debt, leaves
them no room to doubt that the delenda est Carthago 102
must shortly come to pass, and then will be  their
time to pay off their old scores against Great Britain.
But to return to Canada West: large as we have
seen the population to be, yet, in comparison to the
extent of country, it is nothing. Whichever way
you travel, the country, with few exceptions, presents
nothing but one vast forest; and in the more immediate neighbourhood of the towns and villages, the
little clearings, dotted over with the black stumps of
trees, only proves how much remains to be done by
the sturdy emigrant labourer, as soon as he arrives in
the country.
I Repeat, therefore, that if my countrymen of
England will emigrate, don't let them throw away
themselves and their scanty means by going to the
Cape of Good Hope, or any of the Australian colonies,
or New Zealand; but, by all means, go to the best
parts of Canada West, where they will find the soil
fertile beyond their expectations, the seasons certain
and regular, and the climate healthy; besides which,
it is a cheap and abundant country, without taxes;
whereas, if they should emigrate to the United
States, which is called the Land of Freedom, they
will be insulted for being Englishmen; where taxes
are high, clothing very dear, produce very low, and
nothing but fever and ague to welcome the settler;
and, the best of the joke, not half so much freedom
as in Canada; and what with the constant nuisance
of Yankee swindling and Yankee swagger, the Eng- AUSTRALIA AND  THE UNITED  STATES.      103
lish farming emigrant would find it impossible to get
on; he would soon find out he was no match for
American smartness, and, as the usual course after
being ruined is to take to whisky, this is generally
the finish of English agricultural settlers who emi-
grate to the States instead of going amongst their
own countrymen in Canada West. Besides, the
Americans, with all their wickedness, put forward—
like most rogues—the greatest pretensions to religion : the country is inundated with preachers of a
thousand different sects,—for preachers must live as
well as other trades,—whilst that sort of crotchety
nonsense does not exist in Canada, where the people
attend the churches with propriety and decency, and
the exhortations of the clergymen leave no room
to doubt that they are influenced by a rational and
elevated piety, instead of the gibberish of an American camp meeting.
Many Englishmen have emigrated to the towns
of the American Union with success; but they have
been either clever in manufactures, or in trades connected with manufactures, such as dyeing, bleaching,
calico printing, &c, or clever in iron working, mining, or finding coals, &c.; but I look upon it as an
impossibility for an Englishman to succeed in the
United States, who should go out singly, with
capital, to turn his attention to mere tillage farming ;   and my advice  to  Englishmen is,  never to Ill
attempt such a step, unless they wish to be ruined
in double-quick time.
An Englishman may buy land as much as he
pleases, in America, but the law has been so framed
that he cannot sell it till he has been residing; in the
country some six or twelve months; because no
foreigner—as an Englishman is called—can give a
title to land, and no person will buy from a foreigner!
An Englishman, therefore, in order to sell a farm
worth perhaps only 100/., must previously renounce
his country, obtain letters of naturalization, and take
the oath that he is a true American citizen!
No, no, Canada is the place; a thousand times
preferable to the United States for the farming
emigrant; and there is enough of the popular element mixed up with the Government of Canada to
satisfy the most radical reformer, as a proof of which
it may be stated, that in ordinary times the Government is not felt—the people are left alone to pursue
their own roads to fortune and happiness, and the
Government never interferes with them. The whole
business at Government house, Montreal, for this
immense territory, is managed by the secretary; and
though Lord Metcalfe is a first-rate man, full of
years and experience, it is quite understood that
Mr Higginson, his secretary, is the real Governor
of Canada: thus happily proving how little there is
to do, and how well it must be done; for except CATTLE AND  HORSES.
now and then, at an election, in which a few heads
are certainly broken, and a great deal of rum is
consumed, the people don't seem to care much about
politics, and only desire to be let alone.
After visiting Dundas, Glandford, Ancaster, &c.
as far as the Grand River, I drove over by a much
worse road to St Catharine's by the Welland Canal
to Drummondville and Chippeway, and I must say
I never saw any bad country during the whole
trip. The soil everywhere is most productive, and
the cattle and horses excellent. It is nothing but
justice to the good Canadians to say, that it would
be difficult to find any of their live stock out of condition. They seem, like all good farmers, fond of
their horses, and go where you will, it is a common
sight to see the humblest-looking settlers driving
their wives or sisters out, with a pair of horses that
would not disgrace Regent street. There is an air
of comfort about the appointments and dwellings of
a Canadian settler, that must not be looked for in
bur remote and Newgate colonies of Australia. The
only thing in which Canada does not enjoy all the
advantages of our Eastern colonies is in the article
of sheep. Owing to the climate, sheep and cattle
cannot be kept out in their natural pastures all the
year; they must be sheltered in-doors for five months
in winter. But so they must in Saxony, where wool-
growing is carried on to large profit. So that, if the
Canadians would aspire to this branch of agricultural 106
industry, they must take a leaf out of the German
sheep-farming, and erect proper sheds for their Merinos. On a small scale it will not pay, but when
carried on to the extent of five hundred or a thousand
breeding ewes, of the best Saxon blood, the Canadians will find it highly profitable.
The land also in the Western districts is highly
adapted to the cultivation of beet, and as the settlers
are so distant from the coast, sugar manufactories
from beet would yield fortunes to the growers and
boilers; for sugar will never be very cheap in the
Western and London districts, and the refuse, after
pressing out the juice, is still good for hogs and
It occupied an entire day to drive over these
indifferent roads.from Hamilton to the Falls of Niagara, where we alighted at the Pavilion Hotel, and
revelled again in this most stupendous of all Nature's
works, which the oftener you witness the more you
admire and tremble.
Whether sleeping or waking the cloud and tumult
of the ceaseless foam is always rising up to heaven;
as loud and as incessant as the cries of the three
millions of our torn and mangled fellow-creatures,
held in a state of slavery in the sugar and cotton
States of the falsely called Land of Freedom opposite,
some sections of which I was now about to revisit.
So, Canada, farewell!
Happy and healthy colony, may you long go on and prosper in the successful cultivation of your
peaceful fields: content in the pure and simple pleasures of a country life, you have no cause to envy
the feverish existence of your Republican neighbours,
but, on the contrary, the day is coming when they
will envy you. Farewell! I leave you with regret,
and shall always look back upon your fine country
with increasing interest and affection! a*
Return to the States—Blackrock and Buffalo—Large Steamers—
Cheap Living—Cheap Carriage-—-Cheap Travelling—Penny a
Mile per First Class Trains—Town of Chicago 30,000 Inhabitants—Inland Navigation—Cleveland pretty Place—Building
without Money—Paying Wages Ditto—American Lighthouses
all Gratuitous—Speaker of the House—Propellers^-Plucking
Geese—Ohio River—Frosts every Month in the Year—Fire comfortable 4th July—Cheap Coal—Disasters of English Emigrants
in Illinois—Taking in the Britishers—Better to have gone to
Canada—Road to Oregon—Peoria—Fort Madison—Prairie du
To such a scene as the Niagara Falls, it is impossible to say, Farewell. It is ever present to the imagination, and, if as old as the patriarchs, the spectator
would remember it in all its awful character.
After taking an early dinner at the village of
Chippeway above the Falls, we embarked on board
the British steamer for Buffalo, a short trip of two o r
three hours up the stream of the Niagara Biver.
The shores on both sides are low, and the British
appear to most advantage, the high road skirting the 'EMPIRE'  STEAMER.
river, and no lack of travellers trotting and driving
along. Houses and inclosures were also neat and
numerous, but all was strictly rural; whilst, as we
approached Blackrock and Buffalo, there was a greater
appearance of speculation in mills and manufactories
on the American side of the river. The Americans,,
from their general habits of temperance and early
rising, and unceasing diligence and industry in the
pursuit of wealth, have much more to show than the
Canadians in buildings, but the genius of the inhabitants on the opposite sides of this dividing stream are
strikingly different, and every year becoming more
so; so that in time this river, not half a mile wide,
will separate two nations as different as the French
and English, separated by the narrow channel between
Dover and Calais.
We were now entering the harbour of Buffalo,
crowded with magnificent steamers, built on a dif-
ferent plan, but not at all inferior, to the great
steamers of New York.
When I thought of the' Sapphire' and (Ruby,' belonging to Gravesend, and the $ City of Canterbury'
and her sister-boat, that used to carry us in days of
yore to Margate and Heme Bay, it was very humiliating, and enough to make the Englishman blush
for his inferiority; but only for a moment, till he
recollected that the English waters would not admit
of boats of larger construction.
I have no doubt that the two boats ' Empire' and tiff
[ 111
6 Wiskonsin' could have hoisted up half the fleet of
* Star' and (Diamond ' steamers as easily as South-
seamen hoist up their whaleboats; the saloon of the
* Empire' being three hundred feet long, and as handsome and convenient as experience and upholstery
could make it. Buffalo is certainly a striking place;
a bustling place, and it is eminently an American
place. I saw boarding and lodging announced at six
shillings a week, and casual entertainment at sixpence
per meal, the jtfue-pound loaf of best wheaten bread
at sixpence, and the best pale ale I ever drank in my
life, as good as Bass's, Hodgson's, or Allsop's, at sixteen shillings and sixpence per barrel, or less than
sixpence per gallon! But though Buffalo is a place of
twenty thousand inhabitants, rents were moderate,
many houses to be had as low as 40/. per annum.
Trade was dull and no money to be seen, everybody
was complaining of the hardness of the times, and
yet the hotels were crowded, and the steamers for
Detroit and the upper lakes full of passengers.
As in all the Canadian towns, particularly Toronto
and Hamilton, I saw oyster-shells everywhere, so
they abounded in Buffalo; for, though they must all
be brought four hundred miles by rail, and half as
many more by steamboat, yet carriage is nothing in
this country, in consequence of the immense facilities
and competition in canals and railroads, and nobody
thinks of the expense of conveyance. Thus over the
Alleghany mountains, where the railroad passes the CHEAP TRAVELLING.
summit of 2,500 feet above the terminus at Philadelphia, the heavy canal boats, the very boats, instead
of being emptied of their cargoes, are carried over
the mountains, boats, cargoes, and all, without being
disturbed, and hoisted upon the rails, so little do
they regard the expense of carriage.
I walked into a store at Buffalo for the sale of
cheap publications, a great trade everywhere, as I
have observed before. (Punch' and ' Mrs Caudle,5
the I Nation' and the London pictorial papers, were
exhibited to much effect outside the shop, which was
not kept by a native. He informed me that every
person in Buffalo was complaining of business, except
himself; and from the constant custom which he had,
and the abundant stock which he kept of all sorts of
American editions of English standard works, there
appeared some truth in his assertion. When one can
buy Bulwer's last novel for sixpence, and if in a newspaper form, the whole three volumes for threepence,
no wonder this is a thriving trade. e Martin Chuzzle-
wit,' and all the most popular works of the most
popular authors, are the same price, from sixpence to
a shilling in the book form, large octavo, and double
columns, small type, and inferior paper; but in the
form of the 6 Examiner' they are only threepence.
The Americans are decidedly a reading people; but
they could not find time to read so much if they were
not also a travelling people.
Travelling in America is just as cheap as stopping 112
at home. As the people are all, more or less, anti-
renters, they live in boarding houses, and as soon as
they leave the expense ceases, and they begin boarding in a steamboat instead of on shore.
For instance, the steamers at Buffalo, the best of
them, go twice a day to Chicago, 1,050 miles up the
lakes, for 1/. 12.9.; and three meals a day, good substantial meals, and an excellent roomy cabin to yourself to sleep in, besides a splendid saloon and promenade. This is less than one halfpenny per mile,
board and lodging included! And as the voyage
occupies five days, the total expense is about 6s. 6d.
per day in a steamer, more like a ship of the line than
our steamers. The railroad fare is one penny a mile,
first class.
Buffalo must be a cold place in winter, and everybody admitted it. Its progress has been sudden and
rapid, as there was hardly a house in the place twenty
years age. It is the point from which produce is
forwarded to the Atlantic cities, and manufactures
and groceries sent back in return. Though five hundred miles from New York, it is considered nothing,
and persons of very humble circumstances never
regard the expense of long journies in America,
they really are so very trifling.
Buffalo, besides being very cold in winter, is also
much exposed to the fury of the lake (Erie), and a
winter's hurricane from the west will, some day or
other, sweep the lower part of the town away, and POPULATION OF  CHICAGO  30,000.
cause damage that will require millions of dollars to
make good. This should be looked to in time, when
the requisite defences against the lake might be made
at less than half the expense.
But rapid as the rise of Buffalo has been, it is
nothing to the great town at the other extremity of
the lake, called Chicago, which in a few years, and
before the people in Europe had ever heard of it,
contains 30,000 people, and bids fair to be one of the
most important cities of the Union. It is situate in
the state of Illinois, at the bottom of Lake Michigan,
and commands a very short and easy water communication to the Biver Mississippi, by means of the
Illinois and Michigan Canal, exactly a hundred miles
long, and now in course of finishing. For, notwithstanding the bankruptcy of the State of Illinois, the
London capitalists have recently advanced the requisite funds to complete the canal, which, if any canal
in the world could be expected to pay, it is this.
The steamers from New Orleans to the south, and
from Buffalo to the north and east, meet, all but this
hundred miles; so that it would have been almost an
act of suicide, having gone so far with their loans,
not to go a little further and endeavour to make this
one work at least productive, which it is sure to be
as soon as finished. So that, by the summer of next
year, a person may leave New Orleans for St Louis
on the Mississippi, by steam 1,800 miles, then join a
smaller steamer for Peru, at the head of the Illinois
i iii 114
Biver, three hundred miles more, then by a packet-
boat through the canal, one hundred miles, to Chicago,
when he goes all the way to New York by steam,
2,600 miles further; making the entire distance about
4,800 miles of uninterrupted water-travelling through
the interior of a continent, a greater distance than
exists even in India or China, or even Mr Birchell's
voyage through South America from Para at the
mouth of the Amazon, up the Topayos and down the
Paraguay to Monte Yideo, at the mouth of the
Biver Plate. This was not so long as the American
river communication from New Orleans to New
York by way of Chicago.
From Buffalo we proceeded by one of these
steamers to the city of Cleveland. As I wished to
see the intermediate places, it was necessary to secure a berth in one of the inferior boats—the largest
class of newest steamers, such as the e Empire' and
'Wiskonsin,' not condescending to stop at such paltry
places as Dunkirk, Erie, Ashtabula, &c, all which
and many more on the southern or American side of
Lake Erie we visited, and found, to our regret, that
they were paltry places indeed. In the afternoon
we arrived at the long-looked for city of Cleveland,
and took up our quarters at the I Franklin j—a very
good hotel, and reasonable, in Superior street. The
principal streets are named from the surrounding
lakes, — Ontario street, Michigan street, St Clair
street, Huron street, and Erie street; and the town, BUILDING WITHOUT MONEY.
being built on the rising ground, overlooks the lake,
and vessels may be descried many miles off, approaching or leaving the port. Cleveland is considered one of the pattern cities of the Union— a sort
of modern Athens, as the dirty dwellers in Auld
Beekie like to call their capital.
But everything was very dull in tins model city.
No trade, and no money stirring; and they were
beginning to fear they would have a very dry season,
and a failure of the hay crop.
They were just laying the foundations of a large
hotel in an excellent situation in the main street,
just above the c Franklin,' with a dozen shops or stores
underneath. ♦
I mention it because the contract was remarkable.
The entire building was agreed for at 100,000 dollars, in a district of country where all materials and
labour are extremely cheap, — bricks at 16s. per
1,000, and timber almost for nothing, whilst stone
for heads and sills was in great abundance,—so that
100,000 dollars, under such circumstances, is a large
estimate for one building. The peculiarity in the
contract, usual enough in America, was that the
work-people were not to receive a dollar in money.
Every Saturday night the wages were to be settled
for by orders on the various shopkeepers—butchers,
bakers, grocers, clothiers, drapers, and shoemakers—
or rather promissory notes, payable only in shop
goods, were to be received in full payment by the IB i
!     >
| .1
i 1
various mechanics, who have most likely by this
time, October, 1845, got the roof on. It is a new
and peculiar way of building a block of houses, 100
or 150 feet frontage, and could hardly be thought of
in England, where it would be an illegal way of
payment. Nevertheless, this is the way in which
the boasted American cities have sprung up like
mushrooms; and when we hear in England of bricklayers' labourers obtaining four shillings daily wages,
we ought on the other hand to remember, that it is
not paid in silver money, but in trowsers, teapots,
or any of the extremely numerous things that an
industrious mechanic does not want.
I must say that Cleveland is rather a genteel—
not at all an American word—and a very quiet
place: though it must be a dreadful place in winter,
for it was piercingly cold though nearly in June.
There is a lofty light-house at the end of one of the
streets, to direct the vessels on the lake at night;
and down below, in the filthy and sickly part of the
town, or harbour, there is another light-house to
enable steamers to enter between the piers.
The American Government are rather liberal in
light-houses, which are very numerous all along the
coast of the Atlantic, in the Gulf of Mexico, and
along the shores of the lakes. They are well managed, and kept up very efficiently and economically
at the same time; but although they cost the general
government a large sum every year, they are like ENGLISH  LIGHT-HOUSES.
roads and bridges in France, quite gratuitous; and
captains of ships, foreign or native, have nothing to
pay in America for light-money. This is in England a very serious charge, and increases the expense
of travelling considerably. Besides, the Honourable
Board, who are the legal recipients of this heavy tax
on shipping, are responsible to nobody, and therefore the public do not know what becomes of the
money. Amongst the numerous reforms of the day,
may we not look, as a relief to commerce, to have
light-money abolished ? The safety of the English
coasts affects everybody, as well as the captain and
owner of the ship; the underwriter, the merchant,
and each individual of the community; and the
English Government should never be ashamed to
take a hint from the Americans. On the writer's
plan, of leaving nothing to be envied in the American
Bepublic, not a session of Parliament should be
allowed to pass without throwing open the navigation of the English seas without payment for
light-houses. Mr Hume should look to this, if our
powerful Premier has too much work upon his hands.
I made an acquaintance here with a mean-looking
young man who was squirting his tobacco saliva in
every direction,—one of the most frequent and odious
nuisances in the United States,—when, to my astonishment, he told me he was Speaker of the House
of Bepresentatives! Had he been speaker at the
debating club at the Pig and Whistle, it would have 118
been a grave announcement; but to find my friend
exercising such high legislative functions as Speaker
of the House of Bepresentatives was what I was not
prepared for. He was a thorough-going democrat,
and had been highly useful to his party in helping
to return Mr Polk, and was just proceeding to head
quarters to claim his reward. Whether he ever obtained anything or not I never heard.
There is a large traffic on Lake Erie and the
upper lakes, in the conveyance of all sorts of goods,
and the lowest classes of Irish and German emigrants, by means of propellers, as they call them, or
sailing vessels with a small steam-power attached, in
case of calms or adverse winds. The rates of freight
and passage by these vessels being only two-thirds
of the regular steamers, they obtain plenty of business; and as dispatch is the soul of all American
commerce, and "the summer ends too soon," there
are no sailing vessels on the lakes without the addition of steam, and then they are called "propellers."
Ohio is one of the finest States of the Union, and
in proceeding across it, from the lake to the Ohio
Biver, there was a great progress visible in every direction, both in tillage and grazing. A large portion
of the fat cattle of this State are driven to Philadelphia and sold at twopence halfpenny per pound,
whilst a much greater number ajre driven to Cincinnati, and sold at half the price for salting.
In sheep-farming the American farmer appears to
be behind the rest of the world. They are a long-
tailed, dirty, small, and coarse-wool breed, straggling
about without a shepherd in numbers of fifty or
sixty, and must be more trouble than profit. But
the hogs are worth looking at. They are reared in
large numbers, and in the town of Cincinnati there
are houses where they slaughter and salt down a
thousand in a day. Geese are also universal, not
merely in Ohio, but throughout the States, and may
be reckoned by millions. The people do not seem
to care much for them, however, as a dish at table;
but they are kept chiefly for the repeated crops of
feathers which they afford to the small settler;
feathers being everywhere received as money at the
stores in town in payment for goods. Whether the
geese admire this periodical plucking or not, never
enters into the imagination of the owner, any more
than cutting off his slave's ears in the cotton States
troubles the drivers of Alabama or Mississippi.
The travelling by land is always bad, but the farther you remove from the Eastern States the worse it
becomes; the roads once made receive little or no
repairs; small holes increase to serious impediments:
and the stage-coaches are very rickety affairs, threatening every now and then to send the passengers
sprawling on the road, or over the precipice.
The approach to the Ohio at the town of Beaver
is charming, quite as good as anything I remember 120
in Europe. The descent is, however, rather trying to
the nerves of ladies; you look down into the abyss
from the mountain-road, and, whilst you would willingly prefer walking, the driver cannot stop, and you
are obliged to trust to the chapter of accidents for
your ultimate safety in reaching the bottom.
The Americans have nothing that they may so
well'be proud of as this magnificent Biver Ohio; and,
if one could only forget the dreadful climate, a summer of Senegal and a winter of Siberia, it would be
impossible not to desire to possess some of the lovely
spots on the banks of this shining stream. But as
our landlord at the e Sun' observed, " Hot as it is, sir,
we have a frost every month in the year," which I
had no difficulty in supposing, for I passed the great
and glorious Independence day, the 4th July, on
board a steamboat on this Biver Ohio, which was a
foggy, frosty day, and the passengers were crowding
round the stove fire, to keep themselves warm. Englishmen abuse their climate and call it changeable,
but let them go to the States, and for the first time
in their lives they would find out what the word
changeable means; driving a four-wheel waggon
across a river to-day, and this dav week obliged to
plunge into the same river to cool yourself! Who
would live in such a country ? And yet this extreme
of temperature took place on the Biver Wabash, which
divides Indiana from Illinois, a little time before I
was there. OHIO  RIVER.
I had determined to avail myself of the first boat
that should touch at Beaver going down the Ohio,
but it was late in the afternoon before any arrived.
One had passed whilst we were at dinner, and it
turned out to be a very good one; so the next, in all
probability, would be rather inferior. And so, in
fact, it turned out; it was deep-laden, to within
four or five inches of the gunwale, and had but few
passengers, not above thirty, in a saloon fit to
accommodate a hundred. But this proved rather an
advantage. The passengers became all very sociable
together, which could not have been the case had we
been full; and as the weather was fine, and our table
abundant, we did not affect an impatience which we
did not feel, and saw other boats give us the go-by
without any regret. The Ohio is just 1,000 miles
long, from the bridge at Pittsburgh to the junction
of the Biver Mississippi, and a finer thousand miles of
river scenery could hardly be found in the wide
world. The lower part of the river, however, is
quite destitute of beauty, it is only the first five or
six hundred miles that is really picturesque; the
mountains coming down to the river within a mile or
two, leaving a rich bottom of alluvium between the
navigation and the foot of the hill. In other spots
the mountain comes down to the water, and here we
see the people busy excavating coal, limestone, or
iron ore. The price of coal is put up in large letters
at many of the pits, which varies from three-halfpence
M 122
Ill 11.
!   ','>.
to twopence-halfpenny and threepence per bushel.
It was three-halfpence at Martinsville, opposite
Wheeling, and got gradually dearer till we lost it
altogether. Then we came to the Salt springs, after
which the minerals ceased for many hundred miles.
During the whole thousand miles of the Biver Ohio
there is no bridge, but numerous ferries, and along
the banks of the river there are ninety-eight towns or
villages, of which Cincinnati is the largest, and then
Louisville; but Steubenville and Wheeling, Portsmouth, May sville, Covington, Lawrenceburgh, Jeffer-
sonville, Evansville, and New Albany, are all more
or less flourishing and increasing places. From the
bridge at Pittsburgh to the mouth of the Biver Mississippi, below New Orleans, is 2,212 miles, a navigation that is daily performed in a species of boats or
flats that are merely nailed together like packing-
cases ; and, as it might be expected, almost daily accidents are happening to these frail conveyances.
Our fellow-passengers seemed all to take an interest
in the English traveller; and were not long in inquiring where he was going to, as is usual amongst
Americans. This, by the way, is either grown harmless, or does not exist so rudely as many writers have
represented it; and as to the often-alleged improprieties of speech and liberties taken with the Queen's
English amongst Americans, I need not be suspected
of partiality to the Bepublicans, when I say, without
hesitation, that our language is spoken much better A SURGEON S EXPERIENCE.
and more correctly in all parts of America than it
is in England. There are no provincialisms in the
States, where the abominable dialects of Somerset,
York, and Lancaster, entirely disappear; and, extensive as the country is, one uniform correctness obtains
in speaking the English language.
In answer to their inquiries how far I was going, I
made free to ask the same question of many, and indeed most, of our passengers.   One middle-aged man
replied that he was a surgeon, going to establish himself at Bolivar, in the State of Missouri; it was quite
a new place, and represented to him as very healthy.
He had formerly lived in Indiana, near Vincennes,
and had suffered dreadfully in health, and was determined to begin again  "in a  better location"    He
should leave the boat at St Louis, and then take
another  up the  Missouri,   four  hundred miles   to
Independence, where he must buy a horse, and make
the best of his way through the Osage country, till
he reached Bolivar, about four hundred miles further,
the only healthy place, he considered, in the State of
Missouri.    He would have preferred, he said, not to
have gone so far, and would have liked the capital,
Jefferson city, but the selection had been so injudiciously made, that it must always remain an unhealthy spot.    He pressed me to accompany him, at
any rate, as far as Independence; but I could hold
out small prospects, for, much as I loved adventure,
my time was limited; and I wished to sail for Europe
HI m
■   II
p Hi tn
J i
ii i
before the bad weather set in. He wished, he said,
that he was going with me, for he himself, he added,
was English, being a native of Hertford, but he
feared he should never see his native place again.    I
here inquired into the fortunes of the  family,
which emigrated, many years ago, to Illinois; he
said he had known them well, but it was quite extinct—father, sons, and daughters, all dead and forgotten.    Should we go ashore at , and inquire
for the name of  , once so influential in those
parts, he assured me it would not be remembered, or
even known. The last of the race was compelled to
seek work in a brickmaker's field, wheeling clay and
sand to the moulders; and this fine young man, who,
had he remained in England, could hardly fail to
have done well, turned to drinking, and finally finished
himself by (here  he made a significant motion
across his throat, that could leave no doubt of the
dreadful end of the last of his race).
"It is impossible for an English agriculturist to
succeed in this country," said the surgeon, " whether
he has capital or not. Without money he would stand
perhaps a better chance, but either way it is impossible." As soon as Mr —— arrived in this country he
was sanguine of success; all his neighbours entered
into an agreement among each other by every means
to obtain his ready money; and though the real price
of Indian corn was only fivepence per bushel, amongst
themselves, yet, when Mr became a buyer, as he TAKING  IN THE  BRITISHERS.
must be to a large extent, the price to him was to be
a dollar, or four shillings, per bushel; and they all
religiously adhered to this piece of roguery on every
occasion to fleece the rich Britisher, who, so far from
repining at the high price, saw in it the very element
of success, and wrote home those well-remembered
letters, and calculations of wealth, by growing thousands of acres of prairie land with Indian corn at
eighty bushels per acre, and four shillings per busheh
hut which, fortunately, deceived nobody but himself!
Perhaps no Englishman ever emigrated to America
with greater advantages than Mr
With a
large capital and still larger experience as a practical
farmer, he carried with him his own society of several educated sons and daughters; and the only mistake
he seems to have made, and a fatal one it was, was
not going to Upper Canada instead of to the United
States. Had the family gone to the English side of
Lake Erie instead of the American, with such advantages as they possessed, everything they touched
would have turned to gold; the sons and daughters
would have married into the first Canadian families;
they would all most likely have been alive at the
present moment, rich, prosperous, and happy; thei*
houses and lands would have advanced to a high
market value; and the head of the family would have
been figuring, as he was so well calculated to do, as a
member of the Canadian Parliament. What a melancholy contrast this sad history presents J it
I   ;. t - -: 11 - i f i
I inquired of my medical friend, pointing to the
roof of our steamboat, where all those four-wheeled
new waggons were going to, so nicely painted; some
forty or fifty waggons with their wheels slung over
the sides. He answered me that they were made in
Pittsburg, and were all going to Independence for
sale to the Oregon settlers or Santa Fe traders,
who all made the little village of Independence their
starting-place. This year there was a very considerable movement in both directions, and it was
thought to Oregon alone there would be ten thou-
* sand settlers start off in the six weeks beginning
with the 1st of June, and some even reckoned the
number at twenty thousand. He told me that on a
former excursion up the Missouri, he had learnt a
good deal about the journey, which to an American
was far from formidable, if undertaken in a proper
season of the year; and before we parted he furnished
me with a good many valuable memoranda respecting
this qucestio vexata—the territory of Oregon, some of
which I have placed at the end of the volume.
I said to another younger man, i( Where are you
going to, if you will excuse my curiosity?" He
replied, " To Peoria, in Illinois." * Have you ever
been there?" I asked. "No," he said, but he had
heard it was a very promising place; he had come
from Akron, in the Portage county of Ohio, and was
an artist. I asked if it would not have been nearer
to have gone by the lakes; he said yes, it would,
but he wished to accompany his brother-in-law as far
as he was going, who kept a store at Fort Madison,
and was now on board with his new wife (his sister)
to whom he begged to introduce me. The bride was
far from ill-looking—was young and cheerful; and
the prospect of a residence in the distant State of
Iowa seemed not to give her a moment's uneasiness;
on the contrary, she had heard so much of the healthiness of Fort Madison, that she did not at all regret
leaving her brothers and sisters in Ohio.
<s Are you going also to Iowa," I said, to rather a
Jew-looking man, who was evidently a tradesman,
and had considerable anxieties on his brow. | No,"
replied he, 11 am going home to my store and family
at Prairie du Chien." In answer to my questions,
he said it was a very poor place, no money stirring,
except the little spent by the Indians out of their
Government allowance, and now and then a few
dollars from the United States' troops; and as it was
a horrid climate for eight or nine months in the year,
he had made up his mind to leave it, and was going
home now for that purpose. | Where do you think
of removing to?" He said he had hardly yet made
up his mind completely, but he thought it would be
Key West, where there was more money stirring,
and a warmer climate. As Key West is a little low
island, on the coast of Florida, he will no doubt find
a considerable change in climate, after coming from t
the almost perpetual winter of Prairie du Chien, on
the Upper Mississippi.
The last person that engaged my inquiries was a
son of the South. He should leave us, he said, at
Louisville, and then proceed to his home at Memphis, in the State of Tennessee, on one of the bluffs
of the Mississippi, and one of the most flourishing
and promising places in all the West, Memphis
shipped last year, he stated, eighty thousand bales of
cotton, and was beating the older towns of Vicks-
burg and Natchez, lower down the river, all hollow.
He hoped I should come and visit them at Memphis,
and I should really be surprised to see how they were
going a-head with railroads, &c. VOYAGE DOWN THE OHIO CONTINUED.
Co-operative Societies always successful—No Drinking, no Poverty
—What are the English Clergy about?—American Temperance
Pledge — Parallelograms — Eewards for the Poor — Bankrupt
States—Go-a-head Paying States—Cincinnati—Judge M'Lean-—
Louisville—Falls of the Ohio—Complaints of Trade—Evansville
Blacksmith—Sickly Country—Fogs and Bogs—St Louis—Lead
; and Copper—Iron Mountain—Copper Harbour — Mississippi
increases Fifteen Miles per Century in Length — Cotton 2^d.
per lb.
There is a flourishing community of Harmonites
on a part of the Ohio, near Beaver, called Economy ;
and in a day or two we should be approaching another equally prosperous, known as Rapp's settlement, at Harmony ; now purchased, I think I understood, by Mr Owen. It is a singular thing that
these communities are all, without exception, prosperous ; not only making money, but, unlike individual farmers, possessing it and keeping it.
There are the Davidites, to the north of Toronto,
in Canada; the Fourrierites, in Massachusetts; the
Mormons, at Nauvoo, opposite Fort Madison, on the 130
Mississippi; and the Shakers, at Lebanon, — cum
multis aliis,—and all doing well. The disciples of the
Frenchman, Fourrier, are understood to be the best,
and based on the truest principles of co-operation
without encouraging idleness, or working the willing
horse to death.
In society it is proved, beyond question, that a
settlement may be made in a new country where
land is cheap and labour dear, with far better prospects of success than by private and individual exertions. By himself one man becomes almost frightened at how much he has to do, and how much he
has to endure; but in community these difficulties
vanish. The union and co-operative labour is doubly
effective in felling trees, raising log buildings, &c.;
indeed, it is a continual "bee," to use the country
phrase, where every one assists the other, whilst all
the profit of store-keeping, banking, or any other
legitimate pursuit, goes into the general accumulating
fund, instead of enriching an individual, and becomes
public wealth in opposition to private wealth. Manufactures, building, and mining succeed to tillage,
and by good management such societies ultimately
become the richest in the country.
If fifty families should agree in London, on this
principle, and embark for the Grore or London District, or some of the adjoining districts in Canada
West, and club their little funds together to purchase an improved farm, they could not fail of sue- ffl
cess. Of course there must be rules and regulations
laid down, and a leader appointed to preserve order
and enforce economy and honesty. Every one must
sisrn the agreement, and the creation of wealth after
the first year or two would be astonishing.
In general, the communities in America, based on
the co-operative system, have originated in some
crotchety nonsense of faith, some peculiarities in
their religious observances, or in abstaining from
marriage, and many others; but notwithstanding any
nonsense of this kind, they all seem to have had an
eye to the main chance; and it is sufficient to notice
the Shakers and their garden-seeds, which sell universally through the United States and even Canada at double the price of the same goods from
private nurserymen.
The subject of bettering the condition of the poor
has engaged the minds of thousands of benevolent
individuals in Great Britain during the present century, whilst millions of money have been freely subscribed to assist in the good work. But how little
has been accomplished beyond mere talk, whilst vast
and disproportionate sums have been squandered in
useless and expensive tracts, and the salaries of secretaries, collectors, house rent, printing, stationery,
and advertising. The first step to take would rather
be something practical, to show the people that one
mouthful of bread is better for them than a barrel of
111 132
rum, and one leg of mutton on Sunday is worth a
whole river of gin ! This would be beginning at the
right end; but as the labouring classes will not believe this doctrine unless their teachers show them
the good example, why do the clergy and dissenting
ministers hesitate to follow in the path of the Americans, and before they preach let them first sign the
pledge themselves, engaging to abstain from all intoxicating drinks ? Then they might naturally hope
for success; thousands would flock to their standard;
all trades would improve, except the distilleries:
because the money expended now in liquid poisons
would then go in good woollens, shoes, and calico;
whilst those wretched scenes, the most disgraceful in
London, in the neighbourhood of the gin palaces,
would be spared to the passer-by.
But nothing will be done till the preachers begin
it, and the condition of the poor will never be much
benefited till they adopt the American plan of temperance.
How is it that the Bev. Mr This and the Bev.
Mr That will not sign his name to a temperance
pledge ? Is it that they are " given to wine,"—so
fond of drink, whether punch or toddy, that they
cannot give it up ?
After seeing the wonderful success of the temperance movement in America, and which has been
promoted mainly by the dissenting ministers in that TEMPERANCE PLEIXMi
country, it is a disgrace to look at home, and see
these holy and sleek shepherds of the flock incapable
of abandoning their brandy and water.
The American pledge is short, intelligible, and
very much to the point; * and I cannot help thinking that, if the reverend gentlemen going about
lately in Southwark electioneering, had employed
the same zeal in collecting signatures to this pledge,
amongst the poor and honest inebriates of the Borough and the New cut, it would have given them
far more pleasure and real satisfaction than if their
candidate had succeeded in his vain attempt.
This would, indeed, be bettering the condition of
the poor; and then would follow other and more
important plans by which the number of the poor
would annually decrease. Even parallelograms, that
have been so much laughed at in England, Would
then probably come into fashion amongst the industrious classes, who might, by that method, have better
lodgings at one shilling per week than they can obtain at present for three shillings, whilst the landlord
would be receiving 12\ per cent, interest on his
capital, which is much more than he now obtains*
In a thickly-peopled country like Great Britain,
* American Temperance Pledge.
n "We, the undersigned, do agree, that we will not use intoxicating
liquors, nor traffic in them as a beverage; that we will not provide
them as an article of entertainment, or for persons in our employment | and that in all suitable ways we will discountenance their
use throughout the community"
N 134
where land is scarce and dear, and a large capital
required for its cultivation, any attempts to press
the co-operative principle must fail; but Canada
West is a country peculiarly adapted to such societies, which can no longer be called experiments,
seeing that so many exist already in that country,
without a solitary instance of failure.
The poor in England seem to have had, with all
the immense amount of the national charities, very
little done for them. There has been no want of
prisons and penitentiaries, Bridewells and Newgates,
gibbets, transportation, and the hulks; but no legislators have ever yet proposed rewards for the poor, it
is and has been all punishment—nothing but punishment ! We invite them into the gin shops, and
stand at the doors ready to handcuff them on coming
out; forgetting that it is misfortunes that make men
wicked; and in awarding sentence, make no allowance for their want of education for their constant
and superior temptations. Would it not be wiser
to turn them from the error of their ways by the temperance pledge, than throwing money away in building
and enlarging model prisons and criminal courts ?
But to return to the Ohio. Passing Galiopolis
and Point Pleasant, we arrived at Portsmouth, at
the junction of the Grand Canal which connects this
river with Lake Erie, leading for three hundred and
thirty-four miles through the heart of the State of
Ohio.    This Ohio canal would be considered an im- n
portant public work in any European country, as it
has one hundred and fifty-two locks, and cost a million sterling; but in America these stupendous works
are common, and undertaken, perhaps, with too little
thought or calculation. If it were otherwise they
would not have such an accumulating amount of debt.
Thus the bankrupt States, or those not paying any
interest, though not all repudiators, are ten, and
these are pretty near the amounts following, viz.—
1. Pennsylvania
41,000,000 dollars.
2. Louisiana
-    17,000,000
3. Maryland
-   15,000,000
4. Illinois
-    15,000,000
5. Indiana
6. Alabama
-    13,000,000
7. Mississippi
8. Florida
-      5,000,000
9. Michigan
99       "
10. Arkansas
-      3,500,000
Total . 135,500,000
This is an enormous sum, and never will be paid,
though from recent efforts on the part of Pennsylvania, they are making great efforts to pay a dividend ; and though the largest debt, it is perhaps the
least desperate of them all, because they have, in the
Quaker State, great resources and a large population;
and the friends of Pennsylvania all agree in saying,
that the interest will be regularly paid in future.
We shall see. 136
In some of the other States the hopes of repayment
are but feeble. They have commenced everything,
and finished nothing, and have been long at a standstill, with nothing coming in. " One thing at a time ?
is not the American motto, but everything is sacrificed for the " Go a-head" principle. So that it is
difficult to see where the money is to come from to
pay the interest of any of these debts, except, perhaps, Pennsylvania, and it would be a disgrace if the
second State in the Union in wealth, population, and
improvements were to repudiate whilst so many inferior States are regularly paying their dividends.
Whilst there are ten States which may be called
bankrupt, seeing they have repudiated and no longer
pay the dividends, there are, on the other hand, ten
other States whose stocks are reckoned as very good,
as they regularly provide for the payment of their
interest: these are as follows, viz.—
New York owes
Kentucky     „
S. Carolina
28,000,000 dollars
76,500,000 CINCINNATI.
Without reckoning the national debt of America,
giving a grand total of indebtedness amounting to
two hundred and twelve millions of dollars, which
is nearly fifty millions sterling, a tremendous sum,
which ought not to be increased.
After passing a bustling little town on the banks
of the Ohio called Maysville, a few hours brought us
to Cincinnati, which may be called the metropolis of
the western country, and containing nearly a hundred
thousand inhabitants, including the opposite town of
Covington in Kentucky, to which it is proposed to
throw over a bridge, which the Americans will find
no difficulty in doing except in times of flood, when
the water is sometimes four feet deep in the very
shops on the quay!
Cincinnati is one of the most agreeable cities in the
Union, and trade seemed flourishing. I counted
forty-five steamers at the wharf, and most of them
smoking, ready to shove off on their upward or downward voyage, all which gave great life and animation
to the scene. The markets in the city are numerous
and well supplied, everything cheap and abundant,
from whisky, at tenpence per gallon, to pork, at a
penny per pound, and best milk at a penny per quart.
Indeed, I have heard of a man at one of the markets buying, last year, four turkeys, four ducks, and
four chickens, all for a dollar, or four shillings ! But
I confess I only heard it; I saw nothing half so
cheap.    This city stands in latitude 39 deg., about
the same as Lisbon and Alicant, and the winters,
though very severe, are not quite so long as in Cleveland and New York. The town stands 450 feet
above the sea at New Orleans, but, notwithstanding
its great and unparalleled success, it is difficult to say
what particular cause it is owing to, unless that it is
a sort of half-way house, in a salubrious climate, and
the centre of a vast and fertile region, from all parts:
of which it is easily accessible.
St Louis and Chicago are both getting on fully as
rapidly as ever Cincinnati did, and promise to become
as great. The only ham that I ever saw in the States
that could be pronounced eatable was at Cincinnati;
but to look for a rasher of bacon in this paradise of
pigs would be useless, the Americans do not know
what it means; they have the name and also the
thing, but, tell it not in Gath! it is as much like
London bacon as the filthy American red herrings
are like our Yarmouth bloaters I
Nevertheless, Cincinnati is a very tolerable place,
and, were I transported to the States, and compelled
to live there, which God forbid!
" And drag at each remove a lengthening chain,**
I think I might hope for fewest annoyances by
fixing my quarters at the Buckeye city.
This is, after all, but a faint degree of praise; but
it is something to learn that tiiere is a spot in this
most   disagreeable   of   all   disagreeable   countries, m
where an Englishman of spirit and of moderate taste
and desires could contrive to pass away his time
without being much insulted. The society of Cincinnati is good and literate too, which is an extraordinary thing to say for an American town. I had
letters of introduction to one of the principal inhabitants, the Honourable Judge Maclean, but I understood he had not returned from his judicial business
in Michigan, and I did not care about any other introductions. The judge, I learned, was a man out of
ten thousand, full of virtue, intellect, and knowledge
and will probably be put in nomination for the Presidency in 1848 by the young and feeble party called
the native Americans, or young America; but the
judge is too honest and too good a man to be successful in such a contest, and he will most likely reap no
other honour or reward than being rejected, like
Henry Clay!
Our boat stopped all the day at Cincinnati; and in
the afternoon she dropped down the river along with
three others, all large steamers, and bound, with full
cargoes like ourselves, to St Louis. We had the
satisfaction of being the slowest of them all, and
before it was dark were left far astern.
After passing Lawrenceburgh, the first town of
Indiana, we arrived, soon after daylight, at the Swiss
settlement of Yevay, where a doubtful attempt has
been made to cultivate grapes. Here the Biver Ohio
begins to lose some of its beauties; the high lands 140
have receded farther from the river, and the place did
not look a quarter as well as the real Yevay on
" Leman's Lake," commanding, as it does, the glorious
view of the everlasting Alps!
We stopped some time at Louisville, with its
numerous tall chimnies, but made little or no alteration in passengers, except taking one in at New
Albany, a town four miles lower down; who made,
I remember, great complaints of the badness of
trade, alleging that New Albany had been built too
close to Louisville, and that all his ready-money
customers supplied themselves at the larger city.
He was about leaving it for the west, perhaps for
St Louis; though he did not hear very good accounts
even of that city, for it was reported that great
scarcity of money prevailed at St Louis, that trade
of all kinds was dreadfully overdone, and it would
not be long before a crisis took place there, as the
storekeepers owed immense sums of money to the
merchants of Baltimore and Philadelphia, which it
was impossible they could pay. He was therefore
going to see if these unfavourable accounts were true
or not.
The falls of the Ohio, though considerable enough
to interrupt navigation after a dry season, were
nothing at the time we passed, as the river was very
full; but the rapids have been rendered harmless by
an excellent canal, which, though only a mile long,
has cost a million of dollars.    This canal enables the Wgaygwa^*****^ -
largest-class steamers to pass up the river in the
lowest state of the water, and has tended very much
to the benefit of Louisville and all the higher parts
Of the river. Louisville contains forty thousand
inhabitants; and is, next to Cincinnati, the largest
place on the Ohio. It may be considered the Dundee of America, as it is more largely engaged in the
trade and manufacture of hemp than any other town
of the Union. Pittsburgh is called the Birmingham
of America; but such comparisons are far from flattering to the English, the cleanest part of Pittsburgh,
as I saw it just after the fire, being far dirtier than
the lowest districts in Birmingham.
At Evansville, in Indiana, the last town of any
consequence on the Ohio, we took in a passenger for
St Louis; who stated to me that he was a blacksmith,
and, in answer to my inquiries, was doing pretty well,
putting by his fifteen or sixteen dollars per week:
and yet he said he was going to leave it, for he could
not get paid. He admitted that he could get flour
and provisions, but though he had been eight years
at work at the forge, in a country far from healthy,
he was no better off than when he commenced; he had
plenty of money on his books for work done, but on
the books it would remain, for it was next to impossible to collect it, and he was determined to begin
the world again-somewhere else. He was only going a
little way with us, and should probably select one of
the Atlantic cities, where there was at least some SICKLY COUNTRY.
money, though the profits might not be so good.
He was taking Indian corn in at eightpence per
bushel, and wheat at two shillings, when he could get
it, and would be well satisfied to close his accounts
in this manner; but those articles were the same as
money, and were not to be had for old -debts. He
was determined to leave the country. We had also
two young men that joined us at Evansville. They
were Germans, from Alsace, and were returning to
Europe shortly, having done no good. One of these
young Germans had just recovered from a bed of
sickness, caused by the fever and ague. He had
been living at Terre Haute, a very pretty town near
the boundary line, between Indiana and Illinois; but
had caught the fever at La Fayette, which was a
better place for business than Terre Haute, and all
he had been enabled to save was just sufficient to
carry him from the wretched Wabash to the banks
of the Bhine. He told me that he had been in a
clothing store, but whether as principal-or assistant
there was no means of judging.
These frequent accounts of want of success were
almost the invariable results of my inquiries, and
they were truly disheartening; as these persons,
though in an humble sphere of life, were samples of
a large and useful class, and ex uno disce omnes.
But it was very little better when I made inquiries about our wealthier fellow-passengers; I say
about them, for I could not expect them to tell of
their own extravagancies and embarrassments: but
it appeared, from good authorities^ that the cotton-
planters of the south were a most reckless race, had
no regard to the value of money, had their plantations heavily mortgaged for monies borrowed of the
abolitionists in Boston to purchase slaves when
cotton was worth sixpence per pound sterling, and,
now that it had fallen in the shipping ports to twopence-halfpenny, they naturally felt a constantly increasing difficulty in paying the interest; but how
they should ever pay the principal they neither
knew nor cared!
We were now in the lowest portion of the Biver
Ohio; it was broad, deep, and muddy, with a sluggish stream, and we were looking with interest for
its junction with its mighty neighbour, the great
Mississippi. All the beauty of scenery had vanished;
we were passing the miserable Shawnee town, which
had been better named Ague town, off the mouths
of two extensive rivers—the Cumberland and Tennessee—both coming from the south.
The Biver Ohio, which had been so beautiful for
five hundred or six hundred miles, was now uniting
with the Mississippi, and seemed to resemble an
ocean of pea soup—an ocean without a shore—not a
bit of dry land to be seen as big as your portmanteau. Yast and raging, full and overflowing, this
impetuous mixture of clay and water was now against
us, and we had to keep our steam up to overcome
^— 144
the current. It was altogether dismally uninteresting ; and there were no regrets at leaving the decks
for the night; and it was not till dark the following
evening that we descried the lamps of St Louis.
But, dark and late as it was, I had my luggage
landed, and was soon comfortably at supper at the
Planter's hotel.
In the morning I discovered that we were in a
large and rapidly improving place of forty thousand
inhabitants, that our hotel was a palace, and that
there was a brisk and important commerce carrying
on with places up the various neighbouring streams,
| Hirers unknown to song;"
and with cities, whose names even had scarcely, if
ever, been heard on the European side of the Atlantic. Boats at the wharf were getting up their
steam for Galena and Dubuque, bringing back cargoes of lead;—excursion boats to St Peter's Biver,
Lake Pepin, and the falls of St Anthony, touching
at Prairie du Chien, and not occupying ten days,
with an excellent table all the way; — boats for
Peoria and Peru, up the Illinois Biver;—others for
Jefferson city and Independence, up the Missouri;
but the far greater number were placarded about for
Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, on the Ohio, whilst the
largest boats were for New Orleans, touching at
Memphis, Yicksburgh, and Natchez.
Here was an amount of business truly astounding, ■'.i^wwftr i <Zmm.:<-#.A
and I could not help saying to myself,—If there is
a place in the whole of the American Union that bids
fair for permanent prosperity it is this, St Louis!
The wharf is lined with grog-shops, the temperance
movement not having had time to travel yet 2,000
miles from New York, and copper money, singular to
say, is not in circulation; like Beau Brummell, they
55 don't know the coin." But St Louis is the headquarters for lead, which sells at 14/. to 151. per ton,
even there, and it was to be seen in immense quantities whichever direction you might proceed in, but
principally down by the shipping-place. The lead
district near St Louis extends over two millions of
acres, and, with the adjoining States of Iowa and
Wiskonsin, forms undoubtedly the richest region in
the world for that mineral, beating the English and
Spanish mines already in amount of produce, but in
a few years it will be equal to the whole consumption
of the globe. It appears that they have not yet
adopted the method which the great leadowners of
Yorkshire and Northumberland have of refining the
lead; consequently many tons of silver, say seven or
eight, are thrown away annually by the Americans
on the banks of the Mississippi, as I reckon every ton
of their lead will produce five oz. of silver; and consequently their loss this year will be near 200,000
dollars, by not refining:.
Iron is so abundant to the south of St Louis that
it seems to be on that account quite disregarded.
!l ii
Hi. 146
1 9
At the Pilot Knob and Iron Mountain the ore is so
rich and metallic that it may be beaten out into some
rough implements on the spot, whilst at Copper Harbour, in the neighbouring State of Michigan, on the
shores of Lake Superior, a company in Boston has
secured what they consider the richest copper-mines
in the world, extending over 250,000 acres. This
enterprise is quite in its infancy, having been only
just discovered, but 1,000 tons of ore were shipped
to Boston at the opening of the navigation in 1845,
which produced 700 tons of metal! My informant
was one of the partners, but assured me there were
no shares for sale, there never having been more than
twelve partners. Copper has been hitherto imported
largely by the United States, but as soon as they get
their smelting-furnaces erected at Copper Harbour,
America will be an exporter of copper, as she already
is of lead.
This copper business is the most important discovery
that has been made in that country for years, and
ought to enrich the otherwise poor State of Michigan.
Is it not more than likely, that, if competent persons were to be dispatched to Canada, the same
mineral riches might be found on the British side of
Lake Superior, opposite Copper Harbour ? At any
rate it is worth the attempt. British capital would
not be found wanting for maturing such a speculation,
and Canada is greatly in want of exports. St Louis,
though such an important place, is in a very bad EACH CENTURY FIFTEEN MILES.
situation, though it was the best that offered to the
original French settlers.
The floods of the united rivers, Missouri and Mississippi, unite at a spot only eighteen miles above the
city; and, by the time this father of waters has
reached St Louis, it seems about to carry everything
before it. The channel is already taking an unfortunate direction for the town, and is roaring over to the
opposite shore of Illinois, deepening the water where
it was not wanted, and leaving shoals at St Louis,
where they wanted depth of water. The furious
river during the floods makes itself entirely new
channels; and it is not improbable that, some day or
other, St Louis may no longer be on the banks of the
I The boats are still there, hut the waters are gone."
If we see a town on the Bhine that has formerly
changed sides and back again, there is no difficulty
in anticipating much greater changes in this fearful
river, whose ancient channels are at the present day
far inland, mere long swamps, in the State of Illinois,
4*nd which old channels the river seems to be desirous
of re-opening.
When we consider further, that, during the last
two hundred years the mouth of the Mississippi has
pushed itself thirty miles further into the sea, we can
understand what changes may be looked for in the
next two hundred years, and we can also ascertain 148    COTTON TWOPENCE-HALFPENNY PER POUND.
what becomes of the millions of tons of earth and soil
carried down at all periods of the year by this river
of rivers. It forms the immense alluvium between
the city of New Orleans and the Belize, on which
future sugar planters will make their fortunes.
Sugar planting is a profitable business at New
Orleans. I was introduced to one living at Patterson-
ville, near that city, who was making money fast.
He rather appeared to commiserate the state of the
cotton-planters, with a constantly falling market, and
contrasted the 200,000 hogsheads of Muscovado, of
their last crop, at full prices, with the expensive and
badly remunerated business of growing cotton at
twopence-halfpenny per pound. Sugar was, however, exposed to the casualty of frost, which was some
winters so severe in the low wet soil of New Orleans,
as entirely to cut off the canes, and destroy the hopes
of the planter. It was also a much more expensive
crop, but then the produce of an acre of cane brought
three times as much cash as an acre of cotton.
But the country was dreadfully sickly, and, as the
people begin to die off on or about the 15th of August
in the lower part of the Mississippi, nobody can
remain in the district after July. They must then
push off somewhere without delay or deliberation, and
they generally take the steamer for the Ohio or St
Louis, in order to save their lives. CHAPTEB IX.
Rash of Waters—Funerals—Widows at Fifteen—American Young
Ladies mere Dolls—Adieu to Pellow-passengers—Steam-hoat
Certificates—Cheap Engineers the dearest—Paying Members of
Parliament a bad plan—Santa Fe and Oregon—American Spoliation—Three Million Slaves—If Property in Slaves were abolished
the Traffic would cease—Eree Labour best—Home, sweet Home
—Monarchy preferable to Democracy—King of Mississippi—
Probable Changes—Railway through the Desert to secure Oregon
—Americans should buy our Claim for 5,000,000?.—The other
Alternative more expensive—American Policy should be Peace
—Non-interference—Wheat 16*. per Quarter—English Corn and
Cattle Laws bad.
St Louis, with all its advantages, geographically
speaking, of position, is in other respects an unfortunate selection, for it must ever be an unhealthy
city. There is a terrible mortality every summer
and autumn, from the murky atmosphere which is at
those seasons filled with the overloaded miasmata of
a thousand swamps, near the meeting of the waters
of these great rivers. People were dying fast, even
at the early part of the season, when I was there,
owing to the long-continued inundations from the 150
Missouri. It is now too late in the day to alter the
names of these rivers, but what is called the Missouri
is unquestionably the Mississippi, and ought to have
been so called, the same character of mud and rate of
progress proving the two streams to be identical;
whilst the Upper Mississippi is a clear stream, more
gentle than the other, and at the junction unites as a
perfect stranger. Each river is as distinct, to compare great things with small, as the waters of the
Soane and Rhone, where they blend together at
Lyons, and it is a pity that such an important error
must now be allowed to pass without a hope of correction.
As deaths and funerals are so frequent in all parts
of America, except perhaps the New England States,
compared with what they are in Great Britain, the
same ridiculous vanity is not observable in the last
marks of respect paid to the deceased. The friends
assemble in their usual dress, and by a numerous
muster, rather than by their inky habiliments, testify
their regard to the memory of the defunct. As for
hearses and mourning coaches, plumes, cloaks, and
hatbands, with all the other tricks of undertakers to
make out a long bill for funeral expenses, all such
nonsense is unknown in America; whilst the act of
sepulture is performed with as much propriety and
decency as in London, and probably does not cost
more than a sovereign ! And why should it ? This
is one of the most glaring follies of my countrymen, WIDOWS AT  FIFTEEN.
and it is to be hoped their good sense will not much
longer submit to the tyranny of undertakers. Though
in America, a funeral attended by fifty friends of the
family need not cost more than a few dollars for the
coffin and grave, yet in some parts of Italy, I remember, it costs still less, not half as much as it does in
America, but then the practice is revolting, though
nobody witnesses it. A large grave is opened every
day in the year; and all who die that day are buried
without coffins, in that grave, principally by torchlight. The bodies are then covered over with quick
lime, and the earth shovelled in, and the same grave
will not be opened again till that day twelvemonths,
there being a new and separate grave for each of the
365 days of the year, which are all treated in the same
way; and, by reason of the quick lime, nothing is
found to remain in the grave when next it is opened.
In this way survivors have nothing to pay for funerals
in Italy, and it is well it is so, for the ostentatious
plan of the English funerals would soon ruin all Italy.
I saw, in St Louis, a widow and a mother at
fifteen, which is at all times a melancholy sight, but
which could never be seen in England. It is the
more melancholy in America, inasmuch as it proves
the greater mortality among the men, which is
allowed on all hands, and because the American
ladies are at best but helpless creatures, and more
especially at that tender age.
The early marriages  of  the  American girls is 152
always remarkable, and some writer has observed,
that they no sooner put down their dolls than they
take up their infants, which is often true; but they
may well dispense with dolls, for they are nothing
but dolls themselves all their lives. They absolutely
know nothing; and the father of a family of four
daughters, and who had often himself been in England as a buyer of Birmingham and Sheffield goods,
told me that not one of his girls knew anything
more about making a pudding than George the
Third did. Indeed, he doubted if either of them
knew how to lay the cloth for breakfast: but as for
melting a little butter, or boiling a potato, it was
as foreign to them as algebra. The reason, he said,
was plain. Often born, and always reared, as they
call it, in boarding houses, they never see anything
of the kitchen—which is in possession of a black
cook—perhaps, all their lives. There is a good deal
to impress a stranger with in this distant city of
St Louis, and the busy wharf was a constant excursion. My fellow-passengers down the Ohio were
here embarking for their various destinations, and all
gave me the heartiest invitations not to forget them.
My surgical friend tried hard to persuade me to
accompany him as far as the town of Independence,
whilst the open-hearted young bride plied me as hard
to go with them and see Fort Madison. But it was
impossible; I had already Come farther than I had
intended, and I had no sort of inclination to be over- STEAM-BOAT  CERTIFICATES.
taken by the marsh fever, the remittent or the intermittent fever, ague, or dumbague, or to be finally
laid in a wet grave on the banks of the Mississippi i
so I wished them all, most sincerely, every good,
and finally bade them adieu: intending, in my own
mind, in two or three days to embark also on my
return to the eastern cities, and prepare for a voyage
to Europe. The steamers, as I said before, make
a very formidable show along the wharves at St
Louis, and explosions are not unfrequent. One fine
boat—the Big Hatcher—blew up at the wharf soon
after I left. The various State Governments have
all passed laws that no steamer shall ply for passengers until she has obtained a certificate from two
competent persons, appointed as inspectors, that she
is, both as to her hull, engines, and machinery, safe
and sound, and fully worthy to proceed on the voyage
she is licensed for.
This certificate, framed and glazed, may always
be seen fixed in the most conspicuous part of the
vessel, and is calculated to impart great confidence
to the public. But they say nothing about the engineer, who ought equally to be licensed, as it can
be proved that most of the terrible explosions on the
Mississippi have arisen from the carelessness, ignorance, or drunkenness of the engineers, who are very
often nothing more than common stokers or firemen,
promoted to the care of the machinery because they
are willing to receive a dollar or two per week less
i 154
wages than their predecessor. I was, therefore, looking out for a boat something like the one I came in,
slow and sure, not fancying these " Beat-everything,
red-hot, high-pressure" concerns, that, after taking
your money, throw you a somerset into the air, instead of quietly performing their contract to land
you in Louisville or Cincinnati.
1 found abundance of oyster shells, live lobsters,
* Punch' and eMrs Caudle,' in this distant city,
proving that two thousand miles carriage from New
York was looked on as nothing, as, indeed, it added
little or nothing to the price. There are plenty of
newspapers published daily in the town, but the
farther west the less talent is observable in the
editorial department; and so that new advertisements pour in, which they do, the papers care little
for original articles.
It is no bad thing to be returned as a member of
Congress from these distant States, such as Missouri,
of which St Louis is the capital. The mileage allowed by Government for travelling is sufficiently
liberal to leave a considerable profit; and the eight
dollars daily payment during the session makes the
allowance fully equal to three or four hundred a
year sterling: an amount that is sure to tempt some
needy lawyer^ or at any rate some individual, to
whom such a respectable means of existence is worth
intriguing for. This plan of paying members is a
very bad system,  although   it looks  equitable  in SANTA FE  AND  OREGON.
theory; and as it is a favourite project among English Reformers, like those equally absurd crotchets
of the ballot and universal suffrage, all I can say is,
let my honest fellow-countrymen forbear to imitate
any of these three schemes, because they are American. If they would only go and judge for themselves how these fine theories work in practice, they
would be disgusted with them, as I was, and return
to their fatherland contented with being citizens of
the best governed country in the world, and the only
land of true and genuine liberty!
I could not help watching the removal of our
nicely-painted blue waggons, from the steamer that
brought them from Pittsburgh, to the boat that was
readv to start for Independence. There was, evi-
dently, a considerable trade going on with the Mexican province of Santa Fe and the northern parts of
Texas, the annexation of which appeared to confirm
all true Americans in the overwhelming power and
preponderance of American diplomacy.
Though Santa Fe forms no part of Texas, it will
be no difficultv to the Shannons and Calhouns at
Washington to include it, and thus open up the
entire road to St Francsico and Monterey, in Upper
California; for although Oregon may be a very good
country, and, as they say, always has been, and always
shall be, part and parcel of the United States, in spite
of Great Britain, still Upper California is a much
better one, and the United States will never stop Ill
till she obtains possession of it for her increasing and
adventurous citizens. Such is the unqualified language of all parties of the people, but whether such
be the sentiments of Mr Polk and his Cabinet at head
quarters this deponent sayeth not.
The Americans say they were obliged to annex
Texas in self-defence, and it was solely to prevent its
becoming a free country that it was admitted to the
Union of freemen. Had it remained a free and independent State, it would have been impossible to
prevent the half-murdered slaves in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama from running away
across the frontier; and Texas would have become
the same sort of nuisance as the British settlements
in Canada, only a great deal worse, as being so much
nearer to the slave population. But the Americans
may depend upon it, whatever injustice is committed
in this aggression on the territories of a friendly and
neighbouring power, they shall have their reward.
The robbery of Mexico will not be followed by that
easy and quiet course which the Government of
Washington expect; for it is a law of nature, certain
and invariable, and which God speaks as plainly
through his works as if we heard it uttered in his
voice from Heaven, that no individual, party, or
people can act unjustly with safety any more than I
could go to sleep across the Birmingham railway, or-
attempt to fast thirty days. Look at the French at
Tahiti and Algiers; the English at AfFghanistan and THREE  MILLION  SLAVES.
New Zealand; and the Russians in Circassia and the
Caucasus, how they have all reaped that they have
sown ! So will it be in Texas and California. Every
act of American fraud and injustice will be visited by
a proportionate punishment of disgrace and suffering.
Look at the gross and infamous injustice of this
free people, as they call themselves, keeping three
millions of their fellow-creatures in the condition of
slaves! And not satisfied with all the evils, losses, murmurs, and murders of the system, they are still opening up fresh ground in Texas for the increase and
Ox O
further development of this hellish degradation ! To
buy the slaves is out of the question, they are too
numerous, and the purchase of them would amount
to one hundred millions sterling, at the least. There
is no other remedy but to make a virtue of necessity,
and by freely giving them their liberty, and hiring
them afterwards as domestic or farm labourers, put
an end to this horrible reproach. Even if it produced a national bankruptcy or crisis, as it assuredly
would, it would be the least of two pressing evils,
but far preferable to that impending and threatening
day when a servile war may take place, and another
St Domingo business be repeated in the cotton States
of America, on a much larger scale !
There is some hope that the fine State of Kentucky will be the first to show an example in this
good work.    But whichever may be the first of the
i 'I m
States in this holy race, it will be twice blessed in
giving and receiving; and nothing but honour and
prosperity would attend it.
Until the Christian world consents to abolish
slavery, it will be impossible to stop the slave trade.
Till we agree to put an end to the practice of one
man holding a property in his fellow-creatures, it is
useless to attempt to abolish the traffic in our fellow-
creatures. And, melancholy to say, the present
flourishing state of the slave trade on the east and
west coast of Africa amply proves this, j For the
cause of humanity has gained but little by the British
act of abolition of the trade or traffic in human flesh,
merely because we began at the wrong end, and did
not stipulate by treaty for doing away with the property in human flesh! When the slave trade was
legal, the numbers of negroes annually shipped from
the coast of Africa amounted, on an average, to
50,000, out of which the deaths on the voyage did
not exceed five per cent., say 2,500 human carcases
thrown overboard as food for the sharks; but now, in
the year 1845, with a large preventive service on the
coast, kept up at an enormous waste of English lives
and English treasure, the numbers shipped reach
150,000, whilst the mortality has increased to fifteen
per cent., or twenty-two thousand five hundred dead
bodies thrown overboard every year! A good
deal the unfortunate results of English diplomacy, FREE  LABOUR  BEST.
beginning originally at the wrong end; trying to
crush the traffic before they crushed the property in
There is no doubt that white men cannot grow
sugar and rice, and very few of them would stand
either cotton or tobacco; negroes, therefore, must be
had for all these four branches of agricultural industry ; and why not ?    It was never intended that our
black fellow-creatures should escape the general law
of tilling the ground for the support of life; indeed
the state of labour, as previously remarked, is the
very condition of enjoyment; and, as some French
writer calls it with still more enthusiasm, labour is
the " divine physician of our bodies and souls."    But
let us hire our black friends, and treat them as we do
the whites, and pay them their stipulated wages, and
in the picking season of cotton and the boiling season
of sugar, if they demand ^n increase of pay, let us
give it, in the same manner as we pay higher wages
at harvest time in England.
It is no use to object that if freedom were granted
to the slaves they would leave the estates, and, roving
about the country, commit robberies and murders.
Experience has proved^in Jamaica quite the contrary;
besides, if they did, a more vigilant police, would soon
interfere with this habit. It may also be said that
the slaves are already happy, often singing, better
fed than your English labourers, and that the accounts 160
of cruelty and ill-treatment by the overseers are false
or notoriously exaggerated.    Be it so.    I have heard
a   slave  myself   singing    " Home,   sweet  home! I
of all songs in the language the least adapted to his
condition.    But this only shows how easy the black
race adapt themselves to their degraded and infamous
position, brought on entirely through the wickedness
and greediness of their owners.   As soon as the price
of cotton shall fall in these Southern States one cent
per pound more, and, instead of four cents and a
half, it should be sold at New Orleans and Mobile
at  three cents and a half, or,   at Liverpool, if  it
should fall  to  twopence halfpenny per  pound  for
ordinary New  Orleans, the slavery system of the
United States may be considered virtually at an end.
In like manner, if the Minister in England should
give up the corn laws, down would come the market
value of rice; so that, if no alteration should be made
in the tobacco duties, then the planters would find
out that free labour would be much cheaper than
slave, and in fact, with the low price of cotton, rice,
and tobacco, they would be compelled to alter their
whole system.    The price of sugar is of no consequence.
Missouri, though a slaveholding State, does not
reckon more than 60,000 of them, and it is thought
she already regrets that she ever elected to be admitted
to the Union in such a character, particularly as the MONARCHY PREFERABLE TO DEMOCRACY
country is cold, and not adapted to the cultivation of
those four crops where black labour may be considered indispensable, such as we have just referred to.
It is a very large State, containing forty-six millions
of acres, and therefore not very much smaller than
the whole of Great Britain, and yet, large as it is, it
forms only one out of thirty various States or independent Governments, which have united together,
from time to time, in a sort of league, by which, while
they agree to conduct their own internal affairs, thev
are united together for their common interests,
with a general Government common to them all,
and having their relation to other Governments in
By this sort of compact they all hoped to avoid the
evils of the too great extent of kingdoms, the neglect
of remote provinces, and the usual mismanagement
of local affairs, the constant jobbing and corruption
incident thereto, whilst they might enjoy all the
advantages of concentration, as well as the conveniences and privileges of many capital cities, instead
of one. These are, no doubt, solid advantages, and,
if there were no drawbacks, would be the perfection
of human government. But it has been found out
in America, during the sixty years' experiment of
their independence, that there are two great, alarming, and daily increasing evils incident to this system :— BMC
■ 5 Iff 1
I     j|l
r    ! %w
i I
First, the too great independence of the separate
States; witness the nullification lately in South
Carolina; and secondly, the want of power in the
general Government to perform its functions.
This is more and more striking every day with the
good folks at Washington, who feel the incapability
of'ruling where there is no obedience in the governed. And as every year increases the power of
the separate States, so, as there is no natural increase
in the functions of the central Government, the one
gets weaker as the other gets stronger; and when
Cincinnati or St Louis demands the transfer of the
seat of government, and it is not complied with, then
look out for squalls. The Western States have no
particular affection for things at Washington, and to
be King of Mississippi may be the aim, some future
day, of some successful adventurer, just as " King of
Alleghania " may awaken the ambition, one of these
days, of some millionnaire in the Empire State of
New York. The American Union is, no doubt, like
its great river lying beneath me, grand and imposing,
and its energies and resources vast and wonderful;
but there is no certainty or permanency in either;
the river is yearly making itself new channels, ravaging the neighbouring lands, and is too impetuous for
human control,—so is the people; and the seven wise
men of the East forming the Government will find
the difficulty of their position yearly increasing. PROBABLE  CHANGES.
A modern writer of great distinction* has. said
that the tendency of human affairs is for the people
to elect their chief magistrate, acknowledging, at the
same time, that all elected monarchs have been the
best; for instance, William the Third, Cromwell,
Napoleon, and Louis Philippe; but I would say also
to this philosopher as I would to the English Radical,
1 Go and see," and no true lover of his country would
wish to see the fixed order of succession, as established in England, ever altered, as the advantages on
our side decidedly outweigh the many evils of the
elective principle.
Since the abolition of the property qualification of
electors through all the States, Virginia excepted,
mob law has become "suprema lex ;r and every
moderate and respectable citizen in America acknowledges and laments the fatal mistake that was then
made; for Jack is as good as his master, and as there
are infinitely more labourers than bosses, the entire
power now is in the hands of the rabble!
Previous to my arrival at St Louis it was estimated that as many as 7,000 persons had started for
Independence and Oregon, at which latter place they
would arrive about the beginning of November, 1845,
after a world of troubles and privations. The journey may be considered as follows:—
New York to Cincinnati -
Louisville       -
Shawneetown -
St Louis -
Total from New York to St Louis
Independence -
Foot of Rocky Mountains
Fort Hall on the River Saptin
To Vancouver -
To Mouth of Oregon
Grand Total from New York
to the Pacific
And yet there are two rival schemes to carry a railroad across this country I Twenty thousand men
are to be placed on the work, who will complete
500 miles per annum. Like the ultima ratio regum, the
railway of the republicans is to settle the question of
the Oregon, without the trouble of negotiation; and,
as it is estimated at a mere trifle, only 5,000/. sterling
per mile, a single line, it can be accomplished for
about 20,000,000/. sterling, say, in round figures,
100,000,000 of dollars, to be raised by a nation that
cannot pay their debts, or even the interest, and
among whom it is difficult to see a silver dollar in
circulation! And Oregon, when you arrive there, is
not worth having !   It is a country of mountain and AMERICANS  SHOULD  BUT  OUR  CLAIM.
flood, and though twice the extent of Texas, comprising about 400,000,000 of acres, it is not capable
of maintaining more than 1,000,000 of inhabitants;
nothing but mountains, torrents, and barrens; the
best lands in the sea-district being subject to floods
and regular periodical inundations.
Though in the latitude of Bordeaux, the climate
is cold and cheerless, and the river which has given
its name to the country, for all purposes of commerce
and navigation, is nearly useless. The water-power
is certainly unrivalled and unlimited, and there is no
end to the supply of fine timber; but beyond this
one opening which the country offers, of a flourishing
lumber trade, always a poor trade, there is nothing
else to induce settlers to emigrate, except, perhaps,
the salmon business; which, however, nobody likes
when salted, and it brings in every market but a very
meagre price; whilst, for all the purposes of practical
or national occupation, it is as near to Great Britain
as to the United States, and most likely will never
belong to either! It will be gradually settled by
the ignorance and rapacity of American emigrants;
and, if they don't remove to Bodega and the country
round St Francisco, Montorey, Santa Barbara, St
Gabriel, St Diego, and the other missionary stations
of the Spaniards in Upper California, Oregon will
become a separate republic, quite distinct from the
United States. But most likely the Americans
themselves will abandon it for the richer land and 166
milder climate of California, and I have no doubt,
under the pretence of starting for Oregon, the whole
concern is nothing short of a descent on that remote
portion of Mexico, which the weakness of that Government will not be able to oppose. So that, some fine
morning, the Mexican authorities will discover a
great part of Upper California wrested from them,
and in the actual occupation of American settlers;
from the island of Geronimo, about latitude 30 deg.,
to the harbour of Bodega in 38 deg.
But worthless and remote as Oregon is to Great
Britain, England has a clear right to it by first discovery, and she is not going to sit still and see it
pillaged from her by these unprincipled people;
who, if they set so high a value on it, had better buy
it. It must be cheap at threepence per acre; so let
the Government at Washington pay us at that rate,
which would amount to 5,000,000/., sterling, and so
settle the dispute.
If they should decline any negotiations on this
basis, and expect to get it cheaper by a forcible
seizure, and the alternative of war, they may in that
case lose the country and the money too; beside
having to pay our expenses as well as their own.
No peace without first paying the bill, being the
modern mode of concluding hostilities.
But with all their gasconade, the United States
Government are hardly mad enough yet to venture
on a war with Great Britain.    True, that country is MORE  EXPENSIVE.
to a great extent invulnerable nearly, to any attack
by sea or land; and though it might be possible for
a large force to march through the country and be
Well supplied as to quarters and provisions, yet, in
the end, such a step would terminate in defeat and
disgrace, and England would lament to see repeated
the humiliating affair of New Orleans! Destroy
New York, Boston, and Detroit, if you please, but
don't land, further than at the last place, merely to
give these brawlers for war a practical experience of
what it means, and what such a rich and powerful
nation can do to annoy them. If one hundred large
transports were scuttled and sunk a little below St
Felippe, at the mouth of the Mississippi, laden with
stones, and some other one or two plans adopted which
at present shall be kept in reserve, all the inconveniences of war would be felt by the Americans without the English losing a single man. The Americans
don't read Greek, but what Themistocles said a long
while ago, is truer now than it was then, that fj the
masters of the sea are masters of everything," and
the glorious Republic would soon find this out.
The Americans expect that in any future war with
Great Britain the Black West India regiments would
be landed at Mobile or some other parts of the slave
States, and that, by fraternizing and arming the
slaves, they would rise against their masters and
liberate themselves from a state of thraldom. Nor
would such a measure be very difficult in those
|H        1 168
States where the Black population already exceeds
the White in numbers, such as Florida, Louisiana,
Mississippi, and South Carolina; and where it is
nearly equal, as in Alabama and the southern districts
of North Carolina.
War, of all pursuits, should be the last to be thought
of by America, whose aim for the next hundred years
should be the creation and accumulation of capital,
the article they most require, and to concoct the least
objectionable method of giving early freedom to their
slaves. The party of abolitionists do more harm than
good, and have positively retarded the good work
rather than advanced it; whilst the indiscreet zeal of
such friends as Cassius Clay actually swamp the
humane wishes of many well-disposed Kentuckians
who could better dispense with their slaves than any
other State, and who therefore might be expected to
take the lead in emancipation.
It is like the war in the River Plate between the
Gaucho Rosas and Montevideo. Had the English
and French Governments not interfered, the dispute
would have been settled years ago; but Dictators
do not like to be dictated to; and as to an armed
interference on the part of the European Governments, it would be equally useless; for how could
they injure a beggarly country like Buenos Ayres,
where, we ought to remember, we only came off
second best once before. Non-interference ouffht
always to be the English policy, and it is time we WHEAT  SIXTEEN  SHILLINGS A QUARTER.   169
learned the wisdom of not meddling in other nations'
quarrels. We have had experience enough to avoid it.
Before leaving the immense valley of the Mississippi, where the cheapness and abundance of bread
and meat is truly astonishing, one cannot help casting
a thought across the Atlantic, to that dear island of
Great Britain, where the people are so much in want
of both, but who, through mistaken views of policy,
have passed laws to exclude them.
I inquired how it was possible for the farmers to
sell their wheat at two shillings per bushel, and their
maize, rye, barley, and oats, at eightpence ?   " Why,
sir, my friend  , in Indiana, has got this year
2,000 acres of wheat in one patch, which, at twenty-
five bushels to the acre, amounts to 50,000 bushels.
The thrashing by our simple machines, and the cradling at harvest-time, enables him to get through the
work much quicker than is done in Europe, and in
this poor country 25,000 dollars is a large sum to
receive in a heap for his crop of wheat; and as carriage is nothing on our rivers, or next to nothing,
there are few deductions. There is always sufficient
solar heat to insure good crops, the only danger being
from drought, but there has never been a failure since
I have been in the country. Now you see how we
can grow wheat to pay us at two shillings per bushel,
or, as you say in England, sixteen shillings per
quarter, and it is never likely to be dearer! "
The entire removal of the duty on bread-corn, im-
ported  in  British ships, leaving the manufactured
articles of flour, biscuit, &c, as they stand, or at a
fixed duty, would be better than going to war respecting Oregon, and filling up the channel of the
great river between the Belize and St Felippe, and
would induce the American Government to lower their
duties on some staple articles of British manufacture.
The articles of beef and pork are not of so much
consequence.    Englishmen have a very natural repugnance for salted meat; and therefore, although the
entire duty were removed from those articles, they
would not enter very largely into the consumption of
the English  people;  but  surely the expenses and
risk of shipping live cattle, freight, fodder, water,
and attendance during  the voyage, are sufficiently
heavy to protect the English graziers; and the twenty-
shilling duty on foreign oxen ought to be repealed,
and the duty on foreign butter and cheese reduced
one-half.    A tariff, according to Mr Polk, to be just
and equitable, should have no reference to any sectional interests, but merely look to revenue; and if
the English Chancellor  of the  Exchequer  cannot
afford to forego these various items, let him make
good the loss by laying an additional shilling duty on
malt, and raise the annual licence for first-class gin-
palaces to 50/., and for the second-classes, 30/.; which
is  the  exacl  tax  of our Australian colonies.    To
transfer the tax from bread to poison, ought to displease nobody. RETURN TO THE COAST, MANUFACTURES, ARMY
Crowded Boats—Frightful Climate—Neither Iowa nor Wiskonsin
recommended—Philadelphia Poor Place—Polly of High Tariffs
—Poor Manufactures — Yellow Fever — Boots and Shoes —
Wooden Clocks—Paper Mills—Soap—City of Brotherly Love the
most disturbed in the Union—Constant Assassinations—Hazardous Risks—Fire Insurance—Army and Navy—Fifty Formidable Ships—No Grog—Flowers of Rhetoric—New Post-Office
St Louis was now getting hot and unhealthy, and I
thought it time to be off before it got worse. The
most I could do, to vary my route homewards, was to
land on the south side of the Ohio, and so proceed by
the stage route through Kentucky and Tennessee to
Washington and Baltimore; but many circumstances
tended to prevent putting more than part of this plan
into execution, and I therefore found myself again in
Cincinnati, after a crowded and uncomfortable passage up the Ohio. Though every one is a water-
drinker, the water in these boats in general is intolerably bad and muddy, it being merely taken up in 172
a bucket from alongside, and allowed to settle, when
the mud is precipitated to the bottom of the jar or
cistern; but as the impure element was in constant
demand from such an unusual number of passengers,
the cisterns were emptied before the mud had time to
settle, and the water all the voyage was yellow and
revolting. I thought that one or two hundred large
earthen filters, such as are seen in London, where
they are not required, if shipped to New Orleans,
would have found ready buyers up the river.
We were now leaving the great valley of the Mississippi, which must have been at no distant period
entirely submerged by the sea; but the waters
having retired, they have left for the use of man the
widest and most fertile valley in the world, containing
700,000,000 of acres, mostly of good land! The
progress of population is the only element wanted
to insure its greatness; and that is fast developing
itself, notwithstanding its frightful climate and burn*
ing marshes. But still, not even climate will prevent,
though it may impede, the rapid rise of the Western
States; and it is impossible to imagine that, when
they shall have gained strength and wealth, they will
regard Washington city with any other sentiments than
contempt. What is Hecuba to him, or he to Hecuba ?
They will govern themselves, and regulate also their
intercourse with foreign nations, without the assistance of the gentlemen at head-quarters. This I look
upon as certain; and Missouri, Illinois, and Iowa, as TO  BE  RECOMMENDED.
they will be the best populated of the Western States,
so they will be the first to feel their strength.
Iowa may be considered one of the best climates
of all the States; high and dry, and better drained
than those lower down, it cannot fail of being a great
wheat country, and will be the favourite resort of
settlers for years to come; whilst the State of Wis-
konsin, on the opposite bank of the great river, is too
cold a climate to make any extraordinary progress
by immigration. It is much more severe than
Canada West; which is a country in every respect
superior to Wiskonsin. I am the more inclined to
mention this, as I have observed in a Sunday paper,
circulating very largely among the working classes of
London, frequent encomiums on the State of Wiskonsin, which the editor strongly recommends as a
field for English emigrants! This is to be regretted,
as it could not fail to lead to disappointment; and if
the editor had talked for hours, as I did, with the
disappointed settler from Prairie du Chien, one of
the best parts of Wiskonsin, he would in future not
be so sanguine.
The Alleghany Railroad is an extraordinary work
of engineering skill, and does the Quaker State great
credit. It is only thirty-seven miles in extent, but
is carried over the mountains, by means of stationary
engines, to the summit of 2,400 feet, and then joins
the canal again, leading from Pittsburg to Philadelphia, and 400 miles long.    Where the canal could be
I! ■" ^-^":]f
carried no further, by reason of the mountain range
intervening, the projectors had recourse to a short
railway; and, by means of a succession of inclines,
they have overcome one of the most formidable difficulties that ever presented itself in railway enterprise.
After this Alleghany line, civil engineers need not
be frightened at anything; for it would be no more
difficult to carry a line from Basle to Milan than over
the AJleghanies to Hollidaysburgh.
We finally arrived at Philadelphia, and felt comfortably settled at Saunderson's Hotel. This city is a
large and imposing place; but, apparently, in a sort of
transition-state from commerce to manufactures.
There are very few large ships in the foreign trade;
not half a dozen, and the Cape May pilots may well
complain of the falling off of trade; and, drunken
dogs as they are, keep their spirits up by pouring
spirits down. The abundance of good coals at Philadelphia, and all through this extensive State, points
the city out as the future seat of important manufactures ; and, with cheap food and cheap fuel, the
Americans, without any protecting tariff, ought to
undersell the world. With a five-pound white loaf
for sixpence, and a roasting-piece of beef for threepence per pound, they need not be afraid of Manchester or Leeds. All they have to do is to aim at
making better goods. The American printed cottons,
after returning from Canada, where they are so
beautiful, looked dull and dingy, as if they had been FOLLY  OF  HIGH  TARIFFS.
exposed in a shop-window the whole summer months:
the cloth is good enough, perhaps stronger than our
own, but the management and mixture of the colours
is abominable.    So much for protection 1
The Americans will never be a wool-growing
people; that is, not sufficiently so for their domestic
wants. The climate is not congenial to sheep, and
they are an expensive stock where the winters are so
long and severe as they are in all sections of the
Union, compelling the farmers to build costly sheds,
and lay up large provision of hay and other food for
seven months' artificial keep.
And yet an American writer, who published a
volume in 1825, stated in his book that, in twenty
years from that time (viz. 1845), the export of sheep's
wool from the United States would be so extensive,
as nearly to rival that of cotton ! Whereas the export of sheep's wool is, now that we have arrived at
the limit of his twenty years, just nothing!
This is exactly an example of the perpetual future
tense of this boasting people. It is always, " We
shall or will be." Thus they prophesy that, in 1920,
only seventy-five years to come, the population of
the States, now barely 20,000,000, including 3,000,000
of blacks, will amount then to 160,000,000! Entirely
overlooking the probability that the Union will be
dissolved or undermined in half that time, and that
without any wars or external interference of other
States, but entirely by themselves! 176
Their woollen manufactures are therefore still
more inferior than their cotton fabrics; and yet the
Government are unfeeling enough to lay on a frightful duty, in this free country too, and make the poor
people who stand so much in need of woollen clothing,
to go without it, or pay an enormous price for it,
when they could get the fine woollens from France
and Saxonvj and the heavier cloths from Yorkshire,
at half the money they are now paying. The same
with carpets. The country is overrun with old jaundiced-looking patterns of home manufacture, half
hemp, when they could procure the best Brussels at
the same money, but for their too fond Government,
who, under the imbecile John Tyler, insisted upon
stuffing manufactures down the people's throats,
whether they would or no, although the agricultural,
mining, shipping, commercial, trading, and professional interests amount to 5,000,000 of persons
actually employed, whilst the whole of the persons
employed in manufactures was about 200,000 I By
which it appears that 5,000,000 of persons and their
families employed as farmers, &c, are to put their
hands in their pockets every year to contribute to
making the fortunes of the 200,000 persons and their
families employed in manufactures.
In articles of wood the Americans decidedly excel;
all such manufactures being elegant and cheap, and
want no protection. Their turners' shops, as we
should call them, being perfect museums in their way. YELLOW FEVER.
You see in the eastern cities, buckets, washing-tubs,
churns, and chairs, by millions, and cargoes of them
are sent all over the world. They are mostly made
in ~New England, during their dreary winters, when
the ice of the rivers is often as thick as our parlours
are high, and the snow, by continual drifting, makes
it a difficult job to get in or out of your own house !
And yet the Americans are so thoroughly ignorant
of other countries, that they are not sensible of their
living in a bad climate, much less in the worst climate
of the world,—that is, as I said before, of the temperate zone.
I know that my friends in America will find fault
with thus speaking of their climate; but I will defy
them all to point out a spot throughout the Union,
where the thermometer has a smaller range or variation than 100 deg. in the course of six months; unless
it be a place notoriously subject to yellow fever.
Now can anybody call such a climate good ? Is it
not execrable ?
Englishmen complain of their climate, which is far
preferable to that of the States; but in England how
rarely does the variation of the thermometer for any
six months exceed 50 deg., or just half of the American. We think it excessively cold in January, when
the glass stands at 24 deg., or eight degrees below
freezing; and we reckon it uncomfortably hot in
July, when the quicksilver indicates 74 deg. in the
shade.    But what would a Londoner say to 12 deg. 178
below zero in February, and, five months after, viz.
in July, find the thermometer at Boston up to 103
deg., making an extreme variation of 115 deg.?
But in Falmouth and Torquay, Jersey, St Malo,
or Nice, the variation very little exceeds 40 deg. all
through the year; 45 or 48 deg. being the extreme.
Such may therefore be called good climates. In
Indiana and Illinois a variation of 74 deg. is often
observed between sunrise and noon!
Shoes are an immense article of American manufacture ; and in the State of Massachusetts the value of
boots and shoes sold every year exceeds 3,000,000/.
sterling. Of course every one in the States buys
his highlows ready made; the combination of eastern
shoe-factories on so large a scale putting private
snobs out of the question. They could not get bread
and cheese; and are only to be seen, and that rarely,
in the chief cities of the coast, such as New York
and Philadelphia.
Clock-making is also a great trade; very showy
mahogany and brass clocks being retailed all over the
country at twelve and as high as sixteen shillings
each, bringing in vast sums to the makers. One
man lately purchased 10,000 of them at a reduced
price, in New England, at something like 9s. 6d.
each, shipped them in a vessel just going to China,
and jumped in himself as passenger; and having made
a good sale of his adventure at about 30s. each to
Fouqui, he came back again in less than twelve PAPER.
months a man of fortune,.acquired in a single speculation ! I Such is American enterprise.
Paper-mills are seen and advertised all over the
country; the consumption of every description of this
article is prodigious, not only for newspapers, which
are twenty times as numerous as ours, but for all
sorts of wrappers; whilst for children's books, and
cheap editions of English works, the consumption is
liberal and increasing. The market-women, and the
sellers of fruit and cakes at the corners of the streets,
may be seen with a ream of yellow straw paper at
their elbow, and with a halfpenny-worth of cherries
they give you, unasked, a sheet of paper to carry
them home in. Paper, indeed, seems to be worth-
nothing ; at least the inferior straw paper, which is
in general use for common purposes. The better
descriptions are dear, and not much in demand; but
of the inferior sorts it is quite the reverse. A child
is sent to school, for instance, on Monday morning
with a new spelling-book, a penny Dilworth; and
before Thursday, what with the heat of the child's
hands and the dogs'-ears in the flimsy cotton paper,
nothing legible is left of the penny pedant, and a
fresh spelling-book is provided for the young urchin,
who, whatever he may learn, contrives to destroy two
books a week; whereas, had they been printed on
good paper, like the English books^^they would have
lasted a month.
Soap and tobacco are both great articles of manu-
*<■ 180
facture; and are shipped by these adventurers to all
parts of the world; and as tallow, alkali, rosin, and
water, are abundant enough in all parts of the east
coast, the soap is very cheap, and, as might be expected, very bad. I have seen soap marked up at
one penny a pound; and, as rosin is only two shillings
per cwt., the manufacturers of soap throw in as much
2ls possible in order to reduce the price; but still, tens
of thousands of boxes of soap are shipped every
month from New York, bad as it is, and it is most
likely a good trade, or it would not be continued.
Philadelphia looks well on the map, but it is really
far inferior to New York in point of situation. They
are both low, but New York is entirely free from
swamps, whilst the drab-coloured city is surrounded
with wet and overflowed land, so as to render the
place piercingly cold for eight months in the year,
and full of sickness and mosquitoes during the
summer. I saw very little to admire in Philadelphia except the markets and a few of the public
buildings, and it is not to be compared with New
York in wealth or commercial importance. How
a man of correct taste like Joseph Buonaparte,
the ex-King of Spain, could be content to remain in
such a country and such a neighbourhood, it is diffi-
cult to understand; except that all Europe was shut
to him, and Count Survilliers, therefore, preferred
even Bordentown to the surveillance of the secret
police of Paris! THE  CITY   OF  BROTHERLY LOVE.
Iron castings are very well made in America,
though not equal to the French, who, to the surprise
of an Englishman, are very superior to us in this
department of the hardware trade.
Although the Quaker city enjoys but a bad reputation for honesty, she is eminently famous for Irish
rows, which seem to recur every six or twelve
months. They are not, however, the simple rows
engaged in at Donnybrook, where Paddy meets his
friend, ic and for love knocks him down," but they are
very serious affairs, Paris emeutes, where bloodshed
and butchery goes on, and houses are set fire to
without remorse, when they are occupied by the
enemy. Numbers of .ithese burnings occur without
being suspected in the neighbouring cities, and the
military are called out, and as often beaten. How is
it that this city of brotherly love should be the most
disturbed district of the Union ?
The thermometer stood at 90 deg. every day during
my stay at Philadelphia; but, though hot, it did not
interfere with perambulating the spacious streets of
the city. Walking slowly, and choosing the shady
side of the street, I usually returned to the hotel but
slightly fatigued.
I left this city without regret, just as I had left
every place in the country, hoping that no possible
chance in my future life might bring me near them
The Americans are truly a vulgar, ignorant, brag-
R 182
ging, spitting, melancholy, sickly people. Passing
their lives in a high state of mental excitement,
some kill themselves with drink, and some with
tobacco; some are hurried to the ever-yawning gates
of their cemeteries by excesses in religion, or excesses
in politics; excesses in commerce, or excesses in speculations ; or tribulations of mind induced by a combination of these causes. But calamity is not of very
long life in America, for the men are soon dead, and
soon forgotten. Duels and assassinations also help to
thin their ranks; for, strange as it may appear, it
can be proved that, famous as Italy, Sicily, and
Spain are for the stiletto, there are many more
assassinations and stabbings in the slave States of
America, than in all those countries put together.
This is a melancholy truth; but, as the minds of the
masters in the Southern States insensibly become
degraded by the mere contact, not to say association,
with beings so degraded as their slaves, the moral sense
becomes blunted, they care little for assassination or
for murder, and nothing for stabbing and maiming.
The country between Philadelphia and New York
is a dead level, often in parts covered with water,
and the railroad is comparatively good, and understood to pay well, as a pecuniary speculation.
It was quite agreeable to get back to New York,
and find one's self surrounded by forests of tall ships.
I took a stroll through the black ruins of the late fire
in Broad street, where so many millions had been HAZARDOUS RISKS.
destroyed, and could not help thinking that, while in
London it is 180 years since the great fire of 1666,
in New York two equally great fires have occurred
in the space of eight or nine years; and, no doubt,
will be frequently occurring again,—at least, as long as
doubly and trebly hazardous trades are allowed to be
carried on, often in wooden buildings in the closest
parts of the town. What would an English insurance office charge for the following risk ? Four-
story brick building, without party walls, and roof of
wooden tiles or shingles; basement or cellar occupied by a box and packing-case maker, all the year
round up to his knees in deal shavings, and working
every evening by the light of a candle; ground
floor, a marine store and ship chandler, full of rope
and oakum, pitch, tar, rosin, paint, and turpentine;
first floor, a lard-oil manufacturer, and maker of
stearine for the eandle works ; second floor, a Lucifer-match and blacking manufactory; and fourth
floor, a printer's ? Such an assemblage of trades
would not be tolerated in any English city; but it is
quite au regie in the city of New York. It is not to
be wondered at, therefore, that the insurance business is one of the most peculiar in America, and
could only be supported by a liberal and periodical
smash amongst them, particularly after any great fire.
Notices are therefore posted outside the doors of the
chief insurance offices after a fire of any magnitude,
that " the losses by the late calamitous fire will
not   occasion any  suspension   of  business in this
m ■
! 184
office;" whilst those offices that cannot affix sudh a
notice outside their doors are supposed not to be
able to pay. They make, therefore, a compromise,
break up the concern, and begin again with a new
As the Americans are for ever talking about war,
and how they mean to lick the British whenever the
opportunity is given them, it was interesting to inquire into the strength of their military force, which,
in round numbers, may be reckoned at 10,000
effective men, including cavalry, artillery, ordnance,
waggon, and store department. This force, with a
trifling exception, is employed in Florida and the
frontier States nearest Texas, Fort Gibson, Fort
Learmouth, &c. &c, to overawe the Indians, and give
protection to the Santa Fe and Oregon travellers;
whilst a few may be seen at Detroit, and other
stations on the Canada frontier. It is not a favourite
service; and, though I often saw the recruiting
offices and the money inducements printed and placarded about the towns of the interior for volunteers,
there is great difficulty in procuring even Irishmen to
enter, because all classes of labourers in America
can do better than being shot at for one shilling
a day.
The navy is a better service, more comfortable and
better paid; and not like the military, stuck up for
years in distant garrisons, looking after Indians.
The total number of sailors in the United States'
navy is 6,100, of whom about 960 are stated to be FIFTY FORMIDABLE  SHIPS.
native-born Americans, the rest being principally
English, with a few Swedes and Hanseatics. Their
pay is fifteen dollars a month, and two dollars per
month additional, if they don't draw any grog ration.
This is fully equal to three pounds ten shillings per
month. Without this high rate of wages it would be
next to impossible for the Secretary of the Navy to
man the ships.
The navy of the United States is very respectable.
Taking their navy list it appears that they have, of
all classes of ships, old, rotten, on the stocks, and on
their rivers and lakes, in China and the Pacific, a
grand total of seventy-six; namely, ten line-of-battle
ships, twelve frigates of the first class, two of the
second class, twenty-three sloops-of-war, eight brigs,
eight schooners, eight steamers, together with four
store-ships and brigs; but it may be safely reckoned
that between forty and fifty of this list are really
superior, formidable vessels, and immediately available for any service or emergency. Five ships of the
line, alongside of which, they say, our (Victory'
looks like a frigate, might be ready for sea in a
month, and about six first-class frigates, rated as
forty-fours, but really more resembling our razee,
(Warspite,' which may be considered one of the best
ships of her class. The Americans have only one
razee, the f Independence,' fifty-four, a description of
ship that hitherto has not been seen in any of our
navy yards, but which we shall soon have to exhibit 186
in a few razees now constructing out of some old
first-rates that have not seen much service. About
twenty sloops, or small frigates, might also be made
immediately available, provided they could find hands,
and nothing but the high wages of seventy shillings
sterling per month to the temperance sailors, and the
late act abolishing flogging, could enable them to man
their ships. It has been proved, over and over again,
that the seamen are far more efficient and healthy, as
well as in better discipline, without grog than with it;
and a drink of hot cocoa or coffee, when they reef
topsails, is more agreeable to the hardy sailor than
the stimulus of grog in the British navy.
Note.—An American writer of the present day thus lays down
the difference which he understands to exist between his countrymen
and the English:.—
"By the American institutions every citizen is in himself a sovereign ; and possesses, as a matter of course, every natural right
and its consequences that monarchs grant by special act of grace
to their obedient subjects. While Europeans range in varying
subordinate degrees, the citizens of our glorious republic have a
right to rank with kings."
In a mad prospectus for a railroad, only 4,000 miles long, to
Oregon, the projector finishes with the following specimen of the
" Arouse, then, Americans, and obey the mandate which destiny
has imposed upon you, for the redemption of a world ! Send forth
upon its mighty errand the spirit of enfranchised man, the spirit of
liberty and philanthropy, to the uttermost ends of the earth, in a
fulness that shall realize the fondest dreams of the millennium ;
nor let it pause until it bears down every barrier of unrighteous
power, till it enlarges the boundaries of freedom to the last meridian, and spreads its influence from pole to pole." NEW POST-OFFICE  LAW.
The new post-office law had come into operation
since July, 1845, and it was expected on all hands to
turn out a failure. The rate is now twopence-halfpenny on a single letter, or half oz., for any distance
not exceeding three hundred miles, and fivepence for
all above that distance. The stamp is a head of
Washington, that any apprentice might engrave after
a few months' teaching, and the consequence will be
a universal system of forgery; whilst newspapers are
forwarded thirty miles for nothing, and private individuals in towns and cities are allowed to put up
boxes and convey letters by their own private penny
post, to the great damage of the public revenue. So
that the poor post-office law has not a fair chance of
success, from nothing more than want of proper
organization. There are between fourteen and fifteen
thousand postmasters to be paid also out of this
revenue; so that, when Congress meets, it may be
fairly expected to be announced a total failure! CHAPTEB XL ; ;
Education—Learned Professors—National Bank impossible for
Want of Honest Men—The Voluntary Principle—Freehold Pews
—Chapel Speculations — Eeligious Sects Harmless—Church
turned into Post Office—His Excellency the Kev. Mr Everett,
late Minister at St James's—Mr M'Lean—Mr Marcy—Public
Lotteries—Provision for the Poor—Americans have no Music
in their Souls—Two Drunken Bishops—Conclusion.
There is a general diffusion of common education
all through America; reading, writing, and the first
rules of Cocker being indispensable in the poorest
communities; but beyond this there is very little to
talk about. There are no instances of men eminent
in learning or science; everything is for utilitarianism;
and Latin and Greek are not in demand. The best-
informed professors are in the New England States,
where they manage to keep up the appearance of a
decent love of learning; but it is mostly subservient
to theological studies, and preparatory to joining the
Notwithstanding all this lack of knowledge, there
are between one hundred and two hundred universities
and colleges in the United States ; and 100,000 persons living upon the public, engaged in what they
call the learned professions ! There are no surgeons
or apothecaries in America, any more than there are
captains or lieutenants; they are all majors and colonels, and, of course, doctors. No person would be
insane enough to affix his name on the door as plain
Mr List on, surgeon, but invariably Doctor So-and-
So; because, if he did, he could never earn a guinea,
and must abandon practice, however great his abilities. So that all America is one continual and living
falsehood; just as they say that the United States
Bank is built of white marble, when it is notorious
that there is not a quarry of white marble in the
whole country. They have a white limestone in
Vermont that works well for gravestones, doorsteps,
&c., but it is not capable of polish in the slightest
degree, and has as little claim to be called marble as
This too celebrated Bank of the United States
just referred to, as many aching hearts in London
know, is situate in Philadelphia; and is really a
handsome building of white stone, now converted
into a Custom-house. The great buildings in Wall
street. New York, do not pretend to be of marble,
but of simple granite; and they are not of that fraudulent and fictitious character that the Philadelphian NATIONAL  BANK IMPOSSIBLE.
establishment rejoiced in. The question of a National
Bank has been often discussed, and there seems no
good reason why there should not be one, seeing
what splendid, useful, and profitable concerns those of
France and England are; but no, every one was
against it, but especially the late President Jackson,
who did all in his power, most indecently so, to ruin
every plan for such an institution. They pretended
to be afraid of raising up a monied monster, ready at
any time to ruin their free and democratic system;
they feared also that this gigantic power would render
itself too powerful in elections for President, &c.;
but, above all, as was most frequently alleged, there
were not honest men enough in the United States to
be entrusted with its management, and they should
be obliged to -send to England for all the officers and
clerks, from the governor downwards to the porters
and messengers! What an admission] Something
like the confession of a merchant, who had realized a
large fortune, and lived not a hundred miles from
Fayette place, and who had occasionally a dinner
party in the English style, though the family generally lived in the front kitchen, or basement story
under ground; but, in order to prevent his guests
cutting and slashing his mahogany, as soon as the
dessert was set on the table, there was always placed
with the apples a dish of little sticks of soft deal, for
the gentlemen to cut instead of the table, which they
assuredly would have done, pour passer le temps, if SKSHWa      ! MWimwiHn. ,  , iWMmfclt-tn,! nMWi
they had not been provided with the handier and
softer material I
This sitting still at table after having done eating is insupportable to an American, who is entirely
unfurnished with anything like table-talk, and fancies
the best dinner in the world need not occupy more
than seven or eight minutes!
With regard to religion in America, the Government affords it no support whatever, it being left
entirely to the voluntary zeal of its professors, who
are reckoned at about 50,000 persons, or about double
the number in Great Britain. The churches and
chapels are still more numerous in proportion than
the pastors, often averaging one place of worship in
each town for every three hundred inhabitants!
But in a country where selling the fee simple in a pew
is better understood than it is in England, church-
building is often a first-rate speculation, and the most
taking advertisements concerning it may be often
read in their leading journals. The country, therefore, what between powerful preachers and cunning
builders, is overrun with churches, and it is not easy
to predict where this popular movement is to stop.
But there are anti-renters in religion as in all other
American callings, and who prefer the open fields
and the summer evenings for their camp meetings
and revivals. Of these obscene assemblies it is superfluous to speak, except to say that they are not a bit
worse than the sacrament Sundays in many country 192
places in Scotland, especially the Black Isle in Inverness-shire and thereabouts, where I have been
Notwithstanding this jumble of religious trading
and the title deeds of pews, there are some respectable congregations in every section of the Union,
whilst those assuming to be the most respectable
for intelligence and wealth are the Episcopalians
and Unitarians. What would be considered in England the most deistical doctrines are there propounded
and defended before the most select congregations,
whilst the bolder and newer views of the Transcen-
dentalists are pronounced to be the opinions and
creed of those who promise to become the gifted men
of the day.
All the thousand religious vagaries in America
seem to produce no harm, but rather good. The
cultivation of the religious sentiment being the general taste of the people, runs, no doubt, frequently
into lamentable excesses and follies, but they seldom
have any tendency to disturb public order, and being
split into so many hundreds of shades and sections,
in the end all balance one another, and rather promote
the ends of civil government. The cost of religion
in the United States per annum may be reckoned at
about 10,000,000/. sterling, or 10s. annually out of
the pockets of every individual in the country. This
is without reckoning the cost or interest of money
in their numerous churches, but merely includes the 0
stipends of the ministers, the wages of doorkeepers,
fuel, light, printing, and travelling expenses. This
is an immense sum, and contrasts very unfavourably,
with all its faults, with the ecclesiastical establishment
of England. But, bad as our system is, it is better
than the voluntary one; for as a circulation of one-
pound notes is sure to drive away the gold, so does
the excess of these i( little goes," in the way of chapels,
swamp and finally destroy the respectable church.
Though a free trader in everything but religion, I
hope never to see the day when to be a preacher it shall
not be necessary to be a gentleman. If that should
ever be the case in England, farewell peace and domestic comfort, and welcome shipwreck of everything
that is great or good!
The central Government, not long ago, seeing the
increased business of the post office, were looking out
for a more suitable locality; and having the offer of
a church in the most public part of the city of New
York, negotiations were opened, and it was finally
purchased; and the building, with very little exterior
alteration, makes a most convenient, cheap, and suitable public establishment. Other churches have from
time to time been devoted to secular uses in New
York and other cities, nor is it at all uncommon for
a person brought up to the ministry to turn round
on the first advantageous offer, and relinquish his
gown and sacred calling. The late plenipotentiary
at the  Court  of St James was an instance;  his
Excellency Mr Everett having in early life been a
preacher in the Unitarian connexion; but a good
opening presenting itself, leading to the diplomatic line,
he naturally accepted it. His successor, the present
Envoy Extraordinary, Mr MfLean, is understood to
have taken the appointment for only two years. The
situation was going a-begging; for though the most
difficult of the foreign stations, it is the most expensive of courts, and only paid at the same rate as the
minister at Brazil—viz., 9,000 dollars per annum; but
as the allowance for outfit is the same whether the
appointment be for one year or ten, Mr M'Lean was
appointed, on his own terms, for two years, making
the actual salary 13,500 dollars per annum, instead of
only 9,000 ! The envoy is known as a thorough
republican, and will, no doubt, do all in his power to
maintain the honour and interests of his country;
and my Lord Aberdeen must take care, on the other
hand, in any negotiations on the vexed question of
Oregon, that the plain republican, who goes on foot
to Downing street, does not get to windward of him.
Mr M'Lean was chairman of one of the southern
railroads previous to his appointment as minister to
Great Britain, and was held by the shareholders and
his brother directors in the highest estimation for his
business and personal qualifications, and he will no
doubt be very glad to lay down the great man, and,
at the end of two years, return to Baltimore. I had
been introduced on board a steam-boat to an elderly
looking person, leaning on a gingham umbrella,
amongst the crowd of passengers, one of the Cabinet
Ministers at Washington,—no less a person than the
Secretary of State, as he would be called in England,
for the War Department; or, in plainer language,
Wm. Marcy, Secretary at War. He was a plain sort
of person, and, as might be judged from his conversation, a very peaceable secretary, looking apparently
with more interest to his salary of 1,500/. a-year, his
routine duties and red tape, than to any schemes of
conquest or ambition.
It will hardly be supposed that public lotteries can
be tolerated by the States' Governments at this advanced age of religion and civilization; but, lamentable to say, they abound ad nauseam in many of the
States; for, though New York has kicked out the
nuisance with contempt, and made it penal for any
person to deal in lottery tickets, yet they are to be
purchased in various public places  of the city as
easily as cigars, and the first thing that strikes the eye
of the stranger when he crosses the Ferry from New
York to New Jersey is a large board with | State
Lottery Office " written up; and a capital business it
appears to be, though every one is ruined at it except
the owners and contractors.    The trade in lotteries,
like the slave trade, was bad enough when it was
legalized, but as soon as it was abolished by law,
and  recourse was had to smuggling, the nuisance
became more bold and revolting, as well as constantly THBr
increasing in magnitude and profit. I was told of
several young men, originally of respectability, now
reduced almost to beggary in New York from indulging in lottery-tickets.
It is quite an error to suppose that there are no
poor in this land of liberty without law; they are as
numerous as they are in other cities, but they are
taken out of the streets, and therefore do not force
themselves so prominently on public attention. Indeed, the American plan in the management of penitentiaries and poor-houses, is better, perhaps, than
ours. The inmates being abundantly fed, but dreadfully worked, and their labour being sold by tender
to the highest bidder, the contractor has a direct
interest in turning their labour to the best account.
There is therefore no fear of these receptacles of vice
being made too comfortable.
I have elsewhere remarked that the Americans are
a dull and gloomy people; they never sing except in
chapel. This is by no means a result of their temperance, because they are undoubtedly gayer in the
present day than they were in the good old times of
Stoughton and dram-drinking, now happily gone
by for ever. But still there is no disposition to be
merry, nor would an Italian boy be able to collect a
copper in the streets of an American city, even were
he a Paganini in disguise* What! no street-music ?
No, it is not the taste of the people. In their utilitarian notions they will not allow themselves to be DRUNKEN BISHOPS.
happy, although it has been long acknowledged that
"to be happy is to be good."
There was a good deal of gossip about the peccadilloes of the two bishops lately degraded, Bishop
Onderdunk and Bishop  .    It turned out that
they were both fond of a glass of port wine, and
thought it gave them strength and confidence in
addressing large assemblies. But the congregations
were not at all of this opinion; for, though it might
be necessary, in the rev. prelates' Opinion, to go
charged into the pulpit with intoxicating drinks, if
they could not address the Supreme Being without
such impurities, the sooner they abandoned their high
calling the better: and the consequence was that
the two Fathers in God were dismissed forthwith,
and very different men have been elected in their
The most agreeable incident during my sojourn in
America was the preparation for leaving it; and it
was with no small degree of pleasure that after securing an excellent cabin in the fine American liner,
«——, Capt , we saw Sandy Hook astern of us.
We had but few passengers, and all English or Canadians ; and after a rapid and agreeable passage,
landed in Old England in time for partridge-shooting. ill'.
# 1845.    • I'-•
New England States : Maine—New Hampshire—Vermont—
Massachusetts—Rhode Island—Connecticut. Middle States :
New York—New Jersey—Pennsylvania—Delaware. Southern
States: Maryland—District of Columbia.—Virginia—North
Carolina— South Carolina—Georgia—Florida—Alabama —Mississippi—Louisiana. Western States : Ohio—Kentucky—Tennessee — Michigan — Indiana—-Illinois—Missouri—Arkansas—
For the sake of such of my readers as are not very
familiar with the statistics of the United States, I
have thrown the following sort of recapitulation together, which will give them a very good idea of the
state of the country at the period of the writer's visit*
The United States may be considered the most
interesting and important division of the New World.
The popular nature of its Government, the rapid increase of its population, the temperance, industry,
and enterprise of its inhabitants, together with their
Anglo-Saxon language and origin—all- conspire to
make Englishmen regard the country with particular UNITED STATES IN  1845.
favour, especially as it is, no doubt, the most productive portion of the North American continent.
After Great Britain, the Americans are the most
commercial nation of the world, and their country
enjoys a large proportion of land eminently fitted
for cultivation, whilst there are but few mountains,
few barrens, no extensive deserts, immense prairies
of good soil without a tree, and the richest vallies in
the world.
The mountains are few, and of no serious extent in
elevation; the highest, which is in East Tennessee,
only rising to 6,000 feet. The lakes are numerous
and large, and may be reckoned as interior seas of
fresh water. These last are shared with Canada,
except Lake Michigan, which is entirely within the
American boundary. Michigan Lake is 320 miles
long, and though a cold, gloomy, and flat country,
without a hill to be found on either shore, it is
rapidly settling by emigrants from the Eastern
The principal rivers in America are the Mississippi,
4,100 miles long, watering a valley of not less than
700,000,000 of acres, of surpassing fertility! The
Missouri, formed by the Yellow Stone, the Platte,
and Kansas, is another mighty river; whilst the Ar*
kansas, 2,000 miles long, Eed River, 1,500 miles,
Ohio, 1,000, and Illinois, 500 miles, come next in
importance to the Mississippi and Missouri. The
mines of America are very considerable, and, though 200
1      $\ '' *
Dyf ii
only in their infancy, the produce of lead is already
20,000 tons per annum. The United States is a
federal republic Each State is entirely independent,
and has control of all its local affairs; whilst the defence
of the country, the regulations of commerce, the
coinage, &c, are intrusted to the general Government, which consists of a President, elected for four
years, a Senate formed by fifty-eight senators, being
two from each State, and at present 250 representatives, elected by the various States, according to their
population, which is regulated by law as follows :—
One representative to every 47,700 of freemen, and
one to every 79,500 of slaves. The President must
be a native-born American, thirty-five years of age,
and have resided in the country fourteen years.
The American constitution secures personal freedom, liberty of conscience in matters of religion, the
liberty of the press, trial by jury,, and the right of
choosing, and being chosen, to office.
The revenue is derived principally from a duty on
imports, the sales of land, the post office, and lead
The navy consists of about sixty ships of war; of
which number about thirty, or one-half, are formidable ; they have seven navy yards, viz., at Portsmouth,
Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Norfolk, and Pensacola; and there are upwards of 14,000
post offices throughout the country.
The Eastern States are famous for grazing: and UNITED  STATES  IN   1845.
their dairy produce, the Middle and Western States
for wheat and Indian corn, and the Southern States
for cotton, sugar, tobacco, and rice. The crop of
cotton for this year, 1845, will, it is thought, exceed
2,500,000 bales; 100,000 hogsheads of tobacco;
and 250,000 hogsheads of sugar. There are 1,000
steam-boats traversing their waters, and they reckon
upwards of 3,000 steam-engines in various parts of
the country. Their manufactures exceed in value
300,000,000 of dollars annually, but of this large
quantity they do not export more than to the value
of 7,000,000, which principally consist of coarse
calicoes, tobacco, and sperm candles, clocks, and
coopers' work.
The property-qualification for electors has been
abolished, within these few years, in all the States
except New Jersey and Virginia. There is a general
diffusion of common education; but none are found
eminent in literature or science, though they boast of
100 universities. No provision is made for the support of religion, which is left to the voluntary principle. In forty or forty-five years, the population is
expected to amount to 100,000,000. The churches
and ministers are about one in every 500 inhabitants.
There are still about 300,000 of the aborigines, or
Indians; two-thirds of which are beyond the Mississippi, and one-third on the eastern side of that river* 202
1 ■
lit 1
New England States.
There are six States so called, viz., Maine, New
Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island,
and Connecticut. They are all of an unmixed English
origin; they are looked upon as the model States of
the union, being religious, moral, industrious, commercial, literary, and enterprising. Their country is,
however, mountainous, rocky, and barren, whilst the
falls of water being universal, have led the inhabitants to manufacturing industry, and a long line of
coast has diverted a great many to the fisheries. The
winter evenings are employed by the farmers and
their families in little manufactures, where the raw
material is of small value; but though trifling in
detail, are important in the aggregate. Education
is universal in these States; indeed, it would be difficult to find an adult person without common school
learning. Still the population is but small, only
two millions and a half, as the inhabitants are constantly emigrating to the Western States. There
are a few sheep raised in this country, but it is generally too cold for them, whilst in Pensylvania they
can muster as many as two millions.
1. Maine
Contains 35,000 square miles; is cold and mountainous. It joins the British Colony of New Brunswick,
and by the wisdom of the  Ashburton treaty was united states in 1845.
pacified from a previous state of high excitement
on the Eastern Boundary question, now so happily
settled. In consequence of the British improvements going on along the line, and a grand Government road at the expense of England, no future
doubts can ever arise on this former cause of difference between the two countries. The principal
trade of Maine consists of lumber, which amounts to
two millions sterling annually. The towns are mostly
in the southern portion of the State. The population
is only scanty.    Portland is the chief town.
2. New Hampshire
Contains 9,5000 square miles; is very mountainous
and barren. Population not increasing, as they are
given to emigration. Portsmouth, the capital, is
thought to contain 7,000 inhabitants.
3.   Vermont
Contains 8,000 square miles; is entirely an interior
State, not connected with the ocean, but is nearer to
Lower Canada and the city of Montreal than any
other of these parts. A good deal of cattle is fed
on the hills in summer. Quarries of a beautiful white
stone are worked, which they call marble; like the
Highlands of Scotland, the people are excessively poor,
whilst their numbers are not increasing. UNITED   STATES   IN   1845.
4. Massachusetts
Extends over 7,000 square miles, and is the best
cultivated country of the whole American Union,
and may be considered one of the richest and most
industrious. The boots and shoes manufactured in
this State amount yearly to the large sum of four
millions sterling. Population, 700,000. Boston is
the principal city, and the fifth, in point of population,
in the United States. Harvard University, in the
town of Cambridge, is the most respectable scholastic establishment of these parts. Nantucket and
New Bedford are great seats of the South-Sea whale
fishery, and Lowell, Lynn, and Marblehead are all
celebrated for their manufactures. The Legislature of
this State refuse to grant any licences for the sale of
spirituous liquors by retail.
5. Rhode Island
Is a very small state, not containing more than 1,225
square miles, with a population of 108,000. Providence and Newport are the principal towns; the latter
is considered one of the best harbours of America.
6.  Connecticut
Contains 4,764 square miles, and 300,000 inhabitants* Is celebrated for the Blue Laws, a code of
great severity against persons not going to church, UNITED STATES IN 1845.
&c. Sunday in this State commences at sun-set of
Saturday, and finishes at the same time on the following evening. The valley of the Connecticut Biver
is one of the prettiest pieces of scenery in America;
and extends for upwards of one hundred miles through
the finest meadows in New England. Yale College,
at New Haven, was founded by Governor Yale, when
Connecticut was an English colony, and is one of
the most important seats of learning in the United
The four middle states consist of
1. New York,
The first and most important of all the United States;
extending over a space of 47,000 square miles, and
boasting a population of three millions, having trebled
itself in twenty years.
The city of New York is, next to London, the most
commercial city in the world; and there are also several other important and flourishing cities, as Albany,
Utiea, Syracuse, Troy, Oswego, Rochester, and Buffalo, all deeply engaged in agriculture and manufactures.
2. New Jersey,
A small State of only 8,320 square miles, low, sandy,
and marshy by the sea-side; but, nevertheless, un-
usally prosperous from an active manufacture and agricultural industry; whilst, being placed between the
two great markets of Philadelphia and New York,
T 206
united states in 1845.
and in a cheap and abundant country, with the falls
of the Passaick and Patterson, it enjoys many advantages over rival manufactories... in those great cities.
—The population is not far short of 400,000.
3. Pennsylvania.
This is a large and important State, about the same
extent as New York, comprising 46,000 square miles.
It is a fine and fertile country, boasting a rich soil
and a milder climate than New York, and abounds
in minerals and manufactures. The coal-fields, called
anthracite, extend over 624,000 acres; whilst at the
west side of the Alleghany mountains there is an
equal abundance of bituminous coal.
On the pretty river Kiskiminetas millions of bushels of salt are annually made from the brine-pits in
Western Pennsylvania, where every fifty-five gallons of
water is said to produce a bushel of salt. The country
is intersected in all directions by canals and railways;
and, though the income of the State is only one million of dollars and their debt is forty millions, there is
every reason to anticipate, more from the resources of
the country and good policy of the governors than
their honesty, that in a short time the dividends will
be punctually paid, and the people gradually regain
their now lost character. A private individual, a
banker, named Gerard, has been a great benefactor to
the State by bequeathing lately two millions of dollars
to found a college for destitute orphans; which promises n—«?'
to be, when complete, one-of the handsomest buildings
in Philadelphia. The population of the State is
nearly two millions. The city is well laid out, between two fine rivers, the Delaware and Scuylkill;
and yet there is not so much foreign trade as there
was at the beginning of the century.
Four millions of gallons of pure water are supplied
every day for the use of the city | so that we may
say that both New York and Philadelphia are better
furnished with this indispensable article than even
London itself; where, in some parts of the town, the
water is very scarce and hardly drinkable. The
principal towns in the interior are Lancaster, Harris-
burgh, Beading, Pittsburgh, Beaver, and Erie.
4. Delaware.
This is the smallest of the States, except Rhode
Island; and only contains 2,100 square miles, and a
population of 80,000. Wilmington is the chief town,
with 10,000 inhabitants.
The inhabitants are represented as more generous,
hospitable, and honourable than their northern countrymen ; frequently exhibiting a manly independence
of thought and conduct, but not so frugal, industrious, moral, or religious as they might be; whilst the
curse of slavery, under which they labour, smothers all
spirit of enterprise, and will finally ruin them, as it
ruined ancient Rome I
m 208
1. Maryland.
A flourishing State, containing 11,000 square miles,
producing large quantities of flour and tobacco. The
great inlet of the sea, called Chesapeake Bay, runs up
into the interior, and divides the State into two portions, called east and west.
-The Catholic religion flourishes in Maryland; but
one-fourth of the entire population is collected in the
city of Baltimore, which is the fourth city of the
2. District of Columbia.
This is a separate District, not belonging to any
of the States. It is only ten miles square, and contains the federal city of Washington. Congress
meet in it the first Monday in December. It is a poor
place; there are shad and herrings caught in the
3. Virginia.
This is the largest and most ancient of the States,
containing 70,000 square miles; being about the size
of frreat Britain, but a more uniformly good soil.
Virginia has also great advantages as to her position,
climate, and rivers. She is the oldest settled State
in the Union, and the most aristocratic, going by the
name of Old Dominion. She has fourteen good rivers;
and it has been thought that grapes and mulberries
might be cultivated with success.   Minerals abound;
but, notwithstanding her numerous advantages, population remains stationary at about a million. and a
quarter, half blacks and half whites, or nearly so.
Virginia has also furnished the nation with more
public men than any other State, five out of the eleven
Presidents having been Virginians, with a similar
proportion of secretaries and ministers to foreign
Richmond, the capital, is hardly more than a village;
whilst Petersburgh and Lynchburgh, though all pretty
places, are still more inconsiderable. Over the mountains Wheeling is the most like a town; but Harper's
Ferry, and the White Sulphur Springs, are spots
eminently beautiful, and deserving a special visit. In
the western and south-western parts of the State,
beyond the Ohio, there is abundance of good land to
be purchased at a few shillings per acre; but an emigrant's life, even in Ohio or Virginia, is nothing but
a protracted struggle, and it would be far from a step
to be recommended to go even to one of these best of
the States, even if the settler got his land for
nothing. Notwithstanding its slave character, the
writer thinks highly of Western Virginia, but the
100 degrees variation of the thermometer prevails
there as well as elsewhere, and the mahogany complexions of the settlers' wives tell a tale of hard
living, suffering, and toil, that would be ill relished by
those of his countrymen in England who live at home
at ease! 210
4. North Carolina.
This is a large State, possessing 50^000 square
miles. On the sea-coast the land is low, sandy,
swampy, and insalubrious; but in the interior rises
into mountains, called the Blue Ridge, 6,500 feet
high. This State abounds in turpentine trees, and
carries on a considerable trade in lumber. Gold
mines are worked, and more than pay their expenses;
a piece of pure gold having lately been found that
sold for 8,000 dollars! Like all parts of the States,
the number of persons born blind, or deaf and dumb,
is very large; it generally averaging one and a half
per cent, of the total population.
5. South Carolina.
This is a much richer district than the Northern
State of the same name, though not so large; South
Carolina containing only 33,000 square miles.
The climate is very bad; the air, hot, moist, and
unelastic, occasions constant yellow fever. The cultivation of rice is carried on to a large extent where
the plantations are under water; and cotton also
grows with great luxuriance. In the low grounds of
this State there are three blacks to one white, a fearful disproportion; and which must, some day or other,
have a disastrous result. Charleston is the principal
town, which contains 30,000 inhabitants; but they
are  rather  decreasing than otherwise.    The total UNITED   STATES  IN   1845.
population of the State is 590,000, of which three-
fifths are slaves.
6. Georgia.
A very large State, of 62,000 square miles; but,
like the Carolinas, the sea-coast is low and marshy,
abounding in pine-barrens. The population is
600,000; Savannah is the sea-port, and Augusta the
principal town of the interior. The population of
600,000 are more than half slaves, and are principally
employed in the cultivation of cotton. Some gold is
found in this State.
7. Florida.
This is an insignificant State, lately admitted into
the Union. It contains 55,000 square miles; but
does not possess one inhabitant to the mile, though
more than half are slaves. The country is dreadfully
sickly for six months in the year. Key West, a low,
sandy island on the coast, is the principal place. Poor
as the State of Florida is, it ships nevertheless 60,000
bales of cotton annually. St Augustine is the oldest
town in the Union, and, ten years ago, it used to
supply a few oranges to some of the northern ports;
but, though as hot as Havannah, the severe frosts of
1837 cut the trees up root and branch, and destroyed
the trade. The general Government have a naval
station at the port of Pensacola, but it is a wretched
'i 212
8. Alabama
Contains 52,000 square miles; is situate in the Gulf
of Mexico; but, like the other States of the Atlantic
coast, it is low and sandy. This character of the
country extends for fifty or sixty miles from the sea.
But the cheapness and goodness of the land has,
notwithstanding its heat, moisture, and consequent
insalubrity, attracted to Alabama a large immigration
from other States; and it now exports 460,000 bales
of cotton per annum from the port of Mobile alone.
This town, or city as it is called, contains upwards of
20,000 inhabitants. It is a very flourishing place;
and the cotton-planters this year (1845) are satisfied to
receive four and four cents and a half per pound for
their crop, say twopence-farthing sterling at Mobile,
which might be sold at threepence per pound at
Liverpool. About the first week in September the
people of Mobile begin to die off in great numbers,
owing to the sickly season; but all who can afford it
leave the city for the high grounds or the Eastern
States, and remain there till winter commences. The
villages of Tuscaloosa, Montgomery, and Florence,
each having a population of 2,000 persons, are the
principal places in Alabama. Population, 600,000,
half slaves.
9. Mississippi.
This State contains 48,000 square miles.   The great
river forms its western boundary for 700 miles; it ,
is low, wet, hot, and extremely unhealthy. The Yazoo
district is very fertile; and the whole State produces
this year (1845) nearly half a million bales of cotton;
with a population of only 400,000, who are more than
half slaves. Natchez and Vicksburg are the principal towns, containing about 4,000 and 5,000 persons
respectively; whilst Jackson, Woodville, Granada,
and Columbus, are the next in importance, but are
only villages of 2,000 inhabitants.
10. Louisiana.
This is the last of the Southern States in our enumeration, but the first in importance. It is the same
size as its opposite neighbour; and contains, like Mississippi, 48,000 square miles. But there is not a hill
in the whole country, which is subject to frightful
inundations; which are carried off by lagoons and
bayous along the river, and at or near the mouth.
The population is only 400,000, and one-half are
slaves, though there are 120,000 inhabitants in the
single city of New Orleans. A million of bales of
cotton will be shipped from this port, the produce of
the crop of 1845. New Orleans is an extremely
sickly place; and about the middle of August the
people begin to die like dogs, so that the lower part
of the river is nearly deserted by all who can afford to
go away; whilst at Christmas, when the town has
become not only healthy but agreeable, there are
40,000 to 50,000 strangers in the city.    An immense 214
business is transacted during the winter at New
Orleans; which at that period assumes the character
of almost Parisian gaiety, every night, Sunday included, offering plays, balls, or masquerades. Several
most respectable newspapers are published in this
city, French as well as English; and branch houses
from all the principal cities of Europe have establishments at New Orleans.
The Western States
May be generally characterized as exclusively boasting of vast prairies or natural meadows without a
tree to be seen, and in parts a great deficiency of
water; a territory rich in minerals, and enjoying the
advantages of a navigation, by means of its numerous
rivers, unrivalled in the world.
1.   Ohio.
This is a beautiful country, embracing 44,000
square miles, and a population of 2,000,000; and
may be looked upon as one of the best and most important States of the Union. In the eastern parts
it has a fine rolling, undulating surface, healthy and
picturesque; and in the southern parts, along the
banks of the river, it has an inexhaustible fertility.
Ohio is the Indian word for beauty; and it was never
better applied than to this noble stream.
The principal town is Cincinnati, which is centrally
situated, and, being in an abundant country, has made UNITED  STATES  IN   1845.
greater progress in population than any town in the
United States. The climate is also not so bad as it
is in most other places, although there is often a
change of sixty degrees in six hours! Cincinnati
contains 100,000 people, and is the sixth town in the
Union, coming next after Baltimore and Boston.
There are other numerous towns in the State, such
as Columbus, Chillicothe, Zanesville, Marietta, Steuben ville and Cleveland, having 6,000 and 10,000
inhabitants; whilst others, such as Sandusky, Toledo,
and Dayton, on the borders of Indiana, are each of
about 5,000 people. This State of Ohio compares
very favourably with any others; and if I were inclined to settle myself in any part of the Union,—
which I am not,—or if I were inclined to recommend
any State of the Union to others,—which I am not,
—it would most likely be Ohio, or on the Ohio river.
But Englishmen, as I have said elsewhere, must
not dream of emigrating to any part of the States as
farmers; for this class of emigrants the road to the
States is the road to ruin; and if they cannot do at
home, let them go to Canada West; where they will
enjoy superior advantages every way, and at least
avoid being cheated and insulted.
2. Kentucky.
This is a very fine State; and it is a pity it should
be cursed with slavery. The extent of Kentucky is
40,000 square miles, and the  population 800,000. 216
The Mammoth Cave is one of the greatest curiosities
in America. Wheat, Indian corn, hemp, tobacco, and
salt, are the principal articles of farm produce; but
horses and cattle are bred to a great extent; and
more attention has been paid to grazing in Kentucky
than in any other State of the Union. The rivers,
flowing over a limestone soil, dry up in summer with
the great heats. Louisville is the chief city, containing 40,000 people; whilst Frankfort and Lexington are considerable towns in a beautiful country.
The celebrated Henry Clay resides in this State, at
his farm of Ashland; and though he was too honest
a man to be elected for President, enjoys a reputation
the verv highest in America.
3.  Tennessee.
This is a very fine State, covering 45,000 square
miles; and is divided into three sections, East, West,
and Middle. East Tennessee is high and mountain-
ous; the Middle is hilly, and rather warmer climate;
whilst West Tennessee is hot, flat, damp, and rich;
bounded by the river Mississippi, where the principal
town is built on one of the bluffs of the great river,
and called Memphis. The population of the State is
800,000, one quarter of which are slaves. Nashville
is the capital, and the only town deserving the name
in the State, having 10,000 inhabitants; the rest of
the towns, as thev are called, being mere villages of
■J J * o o
600  and   700   inhabitants.    Such   are   Knoxville, UNITED   STATES  IN   1845.
Blountsville, Jonesbro', Rogersville, &c. The climate
of East Tennessee is reckoned the best in America;
though even there the thermometer is often at zero
during the winter, and as frequently in July and
August at 100 and 105 deg. The country is, however, reported as comparatively healthy, and free
from fever, except by the sides of rivers, and is a very
cheap and abundant country, being rather remote
from markets; eggs being threepence per dozen,
chickens fourpence each, ducks sixpence, butter five-
pence per pound, beef and pork three halfpence,
hams threepence. There are some English keeping
shops in this State, but it is a business requiring
care and capital, as they are compelled to keep a stock
of everything, from a silk dress to a tin pot; and
then they are obliged to take payment in feathers,
whisky, bacon, bees'-wax, cloth, flour, &c. The
legal interest of money in all these Southern and
Western States is eight per cent.; and by agreement,
eighteen per cent, even is allowed.
4. Michigan
Is a very extensive State, containing 60,000 square
miles. St Mary's River, fifty miles long, which leads
into Lake Superior, has unfortunately some considerable falls, which prevents anything larger than boats
from entering the Lake; but the State Legislature
has authorized a canal being constructed, which is
actually commenced, and will be of great benefit to
,il 218
the trade of this remote and desolate region, on account
of the prodigious quantity of copper ore lately disco-
vered on the southern shore of the lake; and which
bids fair to rival, if not surpass, all the mines of Great
Britain put together; the ore turning out on smelting forty per cent, of metal. Michigan is a large
peninsula, about the size of England and Wales, but
without a hill. The climate is very cold in the
northern parts, much colder than Canada West; and
yet, young as the State is, the population amounts to
400,000. Detroit is the principal town, with about
20,000 inhabitants; the next important being Mun-
roe, Fort Gratiot, Mackinaw, and St Joseph's.
Fever and ague abound in the whole peninsula, and
may be considered the curse of the country.
5. Indiana.
A low, flat, swampy, and unhealthy State, covering
36,000 miles, but highly fertile and productive.
There are neither mountains, minerals, nor manufactures. The Wabash Canal is. a great work, extending
from Lake Erie to the river Ohio, at Evansville, a
distance of 440 miles through Maumee and Terre
Haute. The population, notwithstanding the sickly
climate, is constantly increasing, and next year it is
expected to reach a million of persons. The settlers
live in a rude abundance, board and lodging being
obtainable in most places as low as four shillings per
week !   The principal towns are New Albany, nearly
opposite Louisville, on the Ohio; Indianopolis, La
Fayette, Lawrenceburgh, and Vincennes. Many of
them are low and often inundated, whilst in the summer water is very scarce and very bad through the
greater part of the interior.
6. Illinois.
A large and important State, containing 55,000
square miles. It has not been so long settled as
Indiana, and therefore not so populous, the inhabitants being about 700,000; but in a few years it will
overtake her, and is expected indeed to surpass her,
as there are few countries in America that promise
more rapid and more certain progress than Illinois,
whilst there is nothing to obstruct it except its sickly
climate, the thermometer often in the summer standing at ten degrees hotter than the West Indies, whilst
in the winter the settlers' log-huts are sometimes
nearly buried underneath eight feet of snow; and persons not taking care of themselves run a danger of being
frozen to death. The Illinois Canal, to connect Chicago
with Peru, and thus unite the Great Lakes with the
Mississippi River, is an easy scheme, it being only
100 miles distance, and must, from its importance
give a great impetus to the trade and settlement of
The chief towns are Alton on the Mississippi,
Peoria, Springfield, and Galena, which is the head- 220
quarters of the lead-mining country, and a very flourishing place.
7. Missouri.
This is a State of great extent, comprising 64,000
square miles, and is destined to become one of the
most important in the Union. On the banks of the
Mississippi and the Missouri the land is low and
inundated, and not adapted for human habitations,
except on a few high bluffs, offering some extent of
building land; but in the interior, away from the two
great rivers, the country becomes elevated and better
drained, but sometimes so perfectly barren as not to
be worth a farthing an acre. The State of Missouri
is rich in minerals, and its lead and iron are thought
to be inexhaustible. In addition to these advantages
the country to the south improves in temperature,
and grazing will at all times amply reimburse the
enterprising settler. A great quantity of rich furs
are obtained from the Indians, and the population is
fast increasing, and even now exceeds 600,000. The
traffic occasioned by the wants of emigrants to California, Oregon, and Texas, is a source of considerable
profit to the State. St Louis is the capital, and
numbers already 40,000 people, and is expected to be
the metropolis of the Western States, and perhaps,
some day or other, the seat of the general Government, in lieu of Washington. Jefferson City is a
failure, having been built in a swamp on the Missouri, UNITED  STATES  IN   1845.
just as the towns of New Madrid and St Genevieve
have been washed away by the floods of the Mississippi ; and even St Louis is by no means safe, for if
it is not washed away, the river threatens to leave it,
and make its channel on the other or Illinois side.
8. Arkansas.
This State is pronounced as if written Arkansaw.
It is a wild, unimportant country, extending over
55,000 square miles, sterile, barren, sickly, and thinly
peopled, there not being more than 100,000 inhabitants. It is a slave State, and what little agriculture
there is, is in cotton, but even that is trifling. There
are no towns, and the chief village and seat of Govern-
ment, called Little Rock, hardly numbers 1,000 persons.
9. Wisconsin.
This is a new State, admitted into the Union in
1845. It is an immense, cold country, comprising
100,000 square miles; and except for its lead mines,
not good for much. Milwaukie, Racine, and Prairie
du Chien, are the only towns, and the population is
as yet very trifling, some of the counties of 300,000
acres not containing twenty inhabitants I For the
four summer months the climate may be reckoned
good; but for the other eight months, owing to the
number of wet prairies, the cold is intense. A canal
is intended to connect the Fox River in Green Bay
with the Wisconsin River, by which steamers will be 222
enabled to go direct from Buffalo to New Orleans
without shifting, an uninterrupted fresh-water navigation of nearly 5,000 miles! Wisconsin abounds in
lead, and is expected to yield an abundance of copper.
Milwaukie is a flourishing place, and the price of
town lots has increased there most rapidly.
10. Iowa.
This is the last of the Western States, and in
many respects is one of the best. It is estimated to
contain 150,000 square miles; but the settled parts
do not extend over more than 40,000 in the south of
the State, and along the banks of the Des Moines
River. The country abounds in lead, and promises
to be a rich agricultural and grazing country besides.
It enjoys also, for America, what may be considered
a fine climate, and smart emigrants from the Eastern
States of the Union cannot fail to do well here,
though I would caution my countrymen in England
from having anything to do with Iowa, though it is a
favourite quarter at the present; and about Fort
Madison, Davonport, Burlington, Dubuque and Iowa
City, there will be money to be made for many years
to Come. The Mandan nation of Indians used to be
numerous a few years ago in this country, but the
small-pox was introduced, and out of 1,600 individuals,
all died but thirty-one. The Missouri River exhibits
a stupendous sight at what is called the Gates of the
Rocky Mountains.    The stream is only 450 yards UNITED  STATES  IN  1845.
wide, and perpendicular rocks come down close to the
Water 1,200 feet high, continuing for many miles.
In the North-western part of the State of Iowa a
canal, it is said, of one mile from St Peter's River to
Lake Winnipeg, would connect Hudson's Bay with
the Mississippi River!
Though not yet formally admitted into the American Union, no doubt it will be at this present session,
commencing in December, 1845, when it is expected
to be organized into three distinct States, the present
dimensions being 200,000 square miles. Whether
Santa Fe is to be included is not known, although it
is quite clear that it never formed any part of the
province of Texas.
This vast country consists of immense prairies,
where a good deal of cotton is cultivated, and large
herds of cattle reared. The year is divided into dry
and wet seasons; and though the country is so near
the tropics, the cold is very severe in December and
January. The principal towns are St Augustine,
Nacodotches, Austin, Matagorda, Houston, and Galveston, which are more or less subject to destructive
inundations. The population of the country exceeds
300,000. If it should be divided into three States, it
will add six senators to Congress, and thus give a
preponderating influence to the institution of slavery,
and all southern interests of the United States. 224
By   an   American.
Its Islands.
Oregon is a vast country lying on the Pacific Ocean,
stretching along the coast through twelve degrees
and forty minutes of latitude, extending its eastern
limits into the body of the Rocky Mountains, and
embracing within those boundaries an area of four
hundred thousand square miles. Attached to this
immense territory, and extending along the whole
line of its coast from the Strait of Fuca to its northern
limit, and even beyond that to the Arctic Sea, is a
continuous chain of islands, known by the general
name of the North-west Archipelago, which in
themselves can scarcely be regarded as less1 than a
feature of secondary importance. The largest are
all traversed by mountain ridges, in the direction of
their greatest length, and the whole archipelago may
be considered as a portion of the westermost chain of
mountains, broken off from the main land at the
Strait of Fuca, and running through the sea, con- HISTORY OF  OREGON.
necting those of Oregon on the south with the range
on the north, of which Mounts Fairweather and
St Elias are the most prominent peaks.
The first and chief of these islands is Quadra and
Vancouver's. This extends along the coast from
48 deg. 30 min., in a northerly direction, for the
space of one hundred and sixty miles, and forms, by
its parallel course with the coast (from which it is
distant about twenty miles), the celebrated arm of
the sea called the Strait of Fuca. Its average width
is about forty-five miles, and it contains a surface of
about fifteen thousand square miles. The climate of
this island is mild and salubrious, and large portions
of its soil are arable and capable of advantageous
cultivation. It has an abundance of fine harbours,
which afford accommodations for vessels of any size.
The chief of these is Nootka Sound, the Port Lorenzo
of the Spaniards, a spacious and secure bay, running
deep into the land, under parallels 49 deg. 34 min.,
and containing within itself many other harbours,
affording most excellent anchorage.
A few miles south of Nootka, we come to another
large bay, called Clyoquot, in which we have seen
that Captain Kendrick preferred to remain during
the winter of 1789, to any other harbour on the
coast. There is another still further south, named
Mttinat, which lies at the entrance of the Strait of
Fuca, and is filled with an archipelago of little islands.
The coasts of this island, and, indeed, the coasts of
I 226
those above, abound with fine fish of various descriptions, among which the salmon predominates. In
consequence of their fisheries, the islands are more
numerously populated by the natives than the territory of the main land.
The next island of significance is Washington, or
Queen Charlotte's. It received the former title from
Captain Gray, who circumnavigated it for the first
time in the summer of 1789. It is triangular in its
form, is one hundred and fifty miles in length, and
contains four thousand square miles. After Gray's
visit it became the favourite resort of the American
traders of the North Pacific. Its climate and soil are
represented by Captain Ingraham as being extremely
well adapted for agricultural purposes, particularly
those portions in the vicinity of a fine harbour in
latitude 53 deg. 3 min. on its eastern coast, and at
Port Estrada, or Hancock's River, on the north side.
The islands of the next importance below the
southern cape of Prince of Wales' Island, (which is
the point of our northern boundary line) are Pitt's,
Burke's, Dundas', and the Princess Royal groups.
Most of those lie between Washington Island and
the shore, and form a numerous archipelago, which
renders the intervening navigation extremely tortuous and difficult. Between Washington and Yan-
couver's Island is a continuous line of others, of
considerable size, lying closer to the land, and following  with   their   eastern outlines  almost   every HISTORY  OF   OREGON.
sinuosity of the continental shore. These latter
groups are for the most part uninhabited, and are
composed of granite and pudding stone, which appear
to be the prevailing rock north of latitude forty-nine.
They are generally destitute of fresh water, and
having but few anchorages, the strong intervening
currents render navigation perplexed and dangerous.
They are only resorted to by the natives in the
spring and in the fall on account of their fisheries.
The Coast and its Harbours.
The coast of Oregon from the forty-second parallel
to the mouth of the Columbia, pursues a northwardly
course, and from that point trends with a slight and
gradual westerly inclination to the Strait of Fuca. Its
profile consists of a bold, high, wall-like shore of rock,
only occasionally broken into gaps or depressions,
where the rivers of the territory find their way into
the sea. The first of these openings above the
southern boundary line is the mouth of the Klamet.
This is a stream of considerable size, issuing from
the land in 42 deg. 40 min., and extending into it
to a distance of one hundred and fifty miles. It has
two large tributaries, called by the unromantic titles
of Shasty and Nasty rivers, an error of taste, which
it is to be hoped the future " Alleghanians," who
inhabit their fertile valleys, will correct and reform.
The bay of the Klamet is admissible only for vessels
of very fight draught; its whole valley is extremely
i 228
fertile, and the country adjacent to the stream
abounds with a myrtaceous tree, which, at the
slightest agitation of the air, diffuses a fragrance that
lends to it another feature of an earthly paradise.
Between this and the Umpqua River, disemboguing
in 33 deg. 30 min., are two other small streams,
neither of which, however, affords a harbour available
for-commercial purposes.
The Umpqua river is a considerable stream, entering the land to the distance of a hundred miles. It
has a tolerable harbour, navigable, however, only for
vessels drawing eight feet of water, and its stream,
thirty miles from the sea, is broken by rapids and
falls. Its valley is blessed with its portion of the
general fertility of the lower region of Oregon, and
consists of alternate groves of stupendous timber and
rich arable plains. The Hudson's Bay Company have
a fort at the mouth of the river, the site of which is
the scene of a flourishing settlement. Five lesser
streams find their way into the sea, at intervals, from
this point to the mouth of the Columbia, and contribute their aid in fertilizing the extensive region lying
between the coast and the parallel barrier running at
the distance of a hundred or a hundred and fifty
miles, known as the President's range of mountains.
The mouth of the Columbia is found at 46 deg.
16 min., but is only distinguishable from the sea by
a slight and gradual inner curve in the shore. Like
all the harbours formed by the rivers on the sea-coast, HISTORY  OF  OREGON.
it is obstructed with extensive sand-bars, formed bv
the deposits of the river on its meeting with the
ocean, and, according to Lieutenant Wilkes, "its
entrance, which has from four and a half to eight
fathoms of water, is impracticable for two-thirds of
the year, and the difficulty of leaving it is equally
great." It is thought by some that these obstacles
may be removed in time by artificial means, but it is
an extremely doubtful question whether it can ever
be made an available harbour for vessels of any
Passing Cape Disappointment, the northern headland
of the river's mouth, we sail forty miles further north,
where we find a secure anchorage in Gray's Bay, for
vessels drawing ten feet of water; but this harbour
is considered of little importance on account of the
extensive sand-flats which usurp the greatest portion
of its entire surface. From Gray's Bay to Cape
Flattery, the southern point of the Strait of Fuca,
but two streams, and those of but trifling significance,
break the overhanging barrier of the coast.
We have now traversed the whole coast of Oregon
lying immediately on the Pacific, and in its course of
five hundred miles, find but two places of refuge for
vessels (Gray's Bay and the mouth of the Columbia), and even these are of but trifling importance in
a commercial point of view. Indeed, all geographical
authorities agree that none of the harbours on this
portion of the coast can be deemed safe ports to enter.
x 230
The next branch of the coast demanding our attention is that which lies along the Strait of Fuca.
This immense arm of the sea cuts off the northward
line of the coast at Cape Flattery, in latitude 48 deg.
23 min., and runs apparently into the land in a southeasterly direction for about a hundred and twenty
miles. It then turns north-west by west, and following* that direction for three hundred miles more, joins
the sea again at Pintard's Sound. The southern
portion of this strait varies from fifteen to thirty
miles in width, and the coast of Oregon along its
course is an exception, in its maritime advantages, to
the portion immediately on the sea. It abounds with
fine inland sounds, offering a secure anchorage to
vessels of the heaviest draught, and there are no portions of the interior navigation which conceals a
hidden danger. The straits can be entered in any
wind, and the great rise and fall of the tides offer
facilities for building; maritime establishments unsur-
passed in any portion of the world. Here, whatever
direction emigration may for the present take, the
commercial operations of the territory will eventually
centre, and the din of our naval arsenals will proclaim
to the world the fulfilment of the prediction that
" The course of empire has westward found its way."
The most important branch of this strait is a spacious arm descending from its eastern extremity in
a southerly direction, into the land to the distance of HISTORY  OF  OREGON.
one hundred miles. It is called Admiralty Inlet, and
the lowermost portion of it is known as Puget's Sound.
This inlet, like the other southern portions of the
strait, is filled with splendid harbours, the southernmost of which has the peculiar advantage of being
within but little more than three hundred miles of
the navigable waters of the Missouri. Great quantities of bituminous coal have been found in its vicinity,
and there are other peculiar advantages attached to
the station, which must eventually make it a point of
the first importance. These circumstances have not
escaped the watchful eyes of the Hudson's Bay Company, and they have already established a fort and a
settlement there, by way of securing possession of the
point.* At the south-east end of Vancouver's Island
there is a small archipelago of islands, which, though
well wooded, are generally destitute of fresh water.
They are consequently, for the most part, uninhabited.
The coast of the main land along the north-western
course of the strait is cut up and penetrated by
numerous inlets, called, from their perpendicular sides
and deep water, canals. They afford no good harbours, and offer but few inducements to frequent
them.    One large river empties into the strait about
* The consideration of the maritime advantages of the southern
coast of the Strait of Fuca and Puget's Sound, suggests, a pretty
forcible view of the remarkable liberality of Great Britain's offer of
the Columbia as the line of compromise. This, while it secures to
her every navigable harbour, does not leave us one. 232
latitude 49 deg., which pursues a northerly direction
for several hundred miles. It is called the Tacoutche,
or Fraser's River, and has a trading-post named Port
Langley situated near its mouth. The other portion
of the coast to the north is much of the same character as that south of this river, on the strait. It is
cut up by inlets, and the numerous islands which line
it, and the heavy fogs that are frequent in the
region, render it at all times difficult to approach or
to navigate.
The Three Regions.
Oregon is divided into three distinct regions, by
three separate mountain ranges, with an additional
inferior chain, binding the extreme outline of the
Pacific coast.
Overlooking the rim upon the ocean edge, the first
chain we come to is the Cascade Mountains, or, as
they are sometimes called, the President's Bange.
They start below the 42nd parallel, and run on a line
with the coast at a distance varying from 100 to 150
miles throughout the whole length of the territory;
rising in many places to a height from 12,000 to
15,000 feet above the level of the sea in separate
cones. Their succession is so continuous as to almost
interrupt the communication between the sections,
except where the two great rivers, the Columbia and HISTORY  OF  OREGON.
Fraser's, force a passage through; an achievement
which they only accomplish by being torn into foam,
plunged down precipices, or compressed into deep
and dismal gorges. This chain of mountains has
obtained the title of the President's Range, in conse-
quence of their most elevated peaks having been
named after the chief magistrates of the United
States, by a patriotic American traveller.
The stupendous line runs from Mount Jackson to
Mount Tyler, and there is yet room among their
gigantic cousins for several succeeding dignitaries.
The idea which suggested their adaptation to our
natural history was a happy one. Perpetual mementoes in the archives of our nation, they form no
perishable notes of heraldry for the contempt of a
succeeding age, but basing their stupendous data
upon the eternal earth, pierce with their awful grandeur the region of the clouds, to transcribe their
records on the face of heaven. The first of them,
Mount Jackson, commences the list, in 41 deg. 10
min.: Jefferson stands in 41 deg;. 30 min.: John
Quincy Adams in 42 deg. 10 min.; Madison in 43
deg.; Monroe in 43 deg. 10 min.; Adams in 45 deg.;
Washington (the Mount St Helens of the English)
in 46 deg.; Van Buren, north-west of Puget's Sound,
in 48 deg.; Harrison, east of the same, in 47^- deg.,
and Tyler in 49 deg. Of these, Mount Jackson is
the largest, and is said to rise above the level of the
sea near 20,000 feet.    Washington, which is next in
ui WiOiwppj^i^^^wwfi
size, is estimated at 17,000 to 18,000. This is the
most beautiful of all. It ascends in a perfect cone,
and two-thirds of its height is covered with perpetual
The region of country lying between this range of
mountains and the sea is known as the first or
The Blue Mountains form the next division. They
commence nearly in the centre of Oregon, on parallel
of longitude 43 deg. west from Washington, and in
46 deg. of lat. They run southwesterly from this
point for 200 miles in an irregular manner, occasionally interrupted, and shooting off in spurs to the south
and west.
The region between this ridge and the President's
Range is called the second or middle region.
Beyond the Blue Mountains, and lying between
them and the Rocky Mountains, is the high country, or third region of Oregon.
The general course of the Rocky Mountains is
from south to south-east. They run south from
54 deg. 46 min., parallel to the coast (at a distance of
500 miles), for 300 miles, and gradually extend their
distance from the sea by a continuous south-easterly
course to over 700 at the 40th degree. In these
mountains, and their offsets, rise the principal rivers
* The limit of perpetual snow for these mountains is, according
to Lieutenant Wilkes, 6,500 feet from the level of the sea. HISTORY OF  OREGON.
20 K
which find their way into the Pacific to the west, and
the Gulf of Mexico on the east. Near the 42nd
parallel is a remarkable depression in the chain, called
| the Southern Pass " which experience has proved
affords a short and easy route for carriages from our
States into the territory of Oregon. Above the 48th
parallel, again, other passes are formed by the course
of the rivers, from either side, which find their way
in some places between the mountains. There are
other ridges intersecting the face of this vast country,
but they are principally offsets or spurs of the three
main chains already described. The principal of
these is the Wind River cluster, on the east of the
Rocky Mountains, from which flow many of the
head-waters of the Missouri and the Yellow Stone
Climate and Characteristics of the Three Regions.
The third region or high country is a
rocky, barren, broken country, traversed in all directions by stupendous mountain spurs, on the peaks of
which snow lies nearly all the year. It is from 2,000
to 3,000 feet above the level of the sea, and in consequence the rivers flowing through it westward to
the Columbia are broken at frequent intervals by
the rugged descent, and rendered unnavigable almost
throughout the whole of their course. There are but
few arable spots in this whole section of territory, its
level plains, except narrow strips in the immediate
I 236
vicinity of the rivers, being covered with sand or
gravel, and being also generally volcanic in their
character. The distinguishing features of the terri-
tory are its extreme dryness, and the difference of its
temperature between the day and the night. It seldom rains except during a few days in the spring,
and no moisture is deposited in dews. In addition to
these discouraging features, the climate, from its
enclosure between these snowy barriers, is extremely
variable, a difference of fifty,and sixty degrees taking
place between sunrise and mid-day. The soil is
moreover much impregnated with salts, springs of
which abound in many places. It will be seen by
reference to the journal which forms the latter portion of this work, that some of these possess highly
medicinal qualities, and from the beauty of their
situation will doubtless become, before time is done,
the resort of the fashionable population of Western
Notwithstanding all these unfavourable qualities,
there are many small* prairies within its mountains,
which, from their production of a nutritious bunch
grass, are well adapted for grazing purposes, and
in despite of its changeable climate, stock is found to
thrive well, and to endure the severity of the winter
without protection.
The second or middle region of Oregon,
between the Blue and the President Ranges, is less
elevated than the third, and consequently all the stern HISTORY OF  OREGON.
extremities of the latter's climate and soil are pro-
portionatery modified. Its mean height is about a
thousand feet above the level of the sea, and much of
its surface is a rolling prairie country, with the exception of the portion above latitude 48 deg., which
is very much broken by rivers and traverse mountain
chains. It is consequently adapted only in sections
to farming purposes. Plenty of game, however, is
found in the forests of the country to compensate
for its unfitness for agriculture. Below this parallel,
and in the middle of the section, are extensive plains,
admirably adapted to stock raising, from the perpetual verdure always overspreading them, and from
the salubrious climate that prevails throughout their
neighbourhood. Cattle thrive even better here than
in the low country, and there is no necessity for
housing them at any time; neither need provender
be laid in, the natural hay found always in abundance on the prairies being preferred by them to the
fresh grass upon the bottoms. It is in this region
the Indians raise their immense herds of horses, and
here, whenever the territory shall be numerously
settled, may be bred clouds of horsemen, who would
not be exceeded by any light cavalry in the world.
The southern portion of this region, as it advances
to the boundary line, becomes less favourable to the
purposes of man, and loses its fertility by rolling into
swelling sand-hills, producing nothing but the wild
wormwood, mixed with prickly pear, and a sparse
sprinkling of short bunch grass. 238
The first or dower region of Oregon is that
which lies along the coast, and extends westward to
the line of the President's range of mountains. The
portion of this lying north of the Columbia and between it and the Straits of Fuca, is a heavily timbered country covered with forests of trees of extraordinary size. It has, however, its spaces of prairie
on* which good pasturage is found, and it has also
some fine arable land. This section is watered by
four rivers, of which the Chickelis, disemboguing
into the Columbia, and the Cowelitz, emptying into
the sea at Gray's Harbour, are the most important.
The forests of this portion of the lower region are its
great feature. They consist of pines, firs, spruce,
red and white oak, ash, arbutus, arbor vitae, cedary
poplar, maple, willow, cherry, and yew, with so close
and matted an undergrowth of hazel, and other
brambles, as to render them almost impenetrable to
the foot of man. Most of the trees are of an enormous bulk, and they are studded so thick that they
rise before the beholder like a stupendous and impregnable solidity, which declares futile all ordinary
attempts to penetrate it. This astonishing exuberance is not confined alone to the timber of the section
north of the Columbia, for we have an account of a
fir growing at Astoria, eight miles from the ocean,
on the southern bank of the Columbia, which measured forty-six feet in circumference at ten feet from
the ground, ascended one hundred and fifty-three
feet before giving off a branch, and was three hun- HISTORY  OF   OREGON.
dred feet in its whole height. Another tree of the
same species is said to be standing on the Umpqua,
the trunk of which is fifty-seven feet in circumference, and two hundred and sixteen feet in length
below its branches. Prime sound pines, from two
hundred to two hundred and eighty feet in height,
and from twenty to forty in circumference, are
by no means uncommon. The value of this spontaneous wealth has already been appreciated by
the acute company who reign commercially predominant in this region, for already their untiring
saw mills, plied by gangs of Sandwich Islanders and
servile Iroquois, cut daily at Fort Vancouver alone
thousands of feet of plank, which are transported
regularly to the markets of the Pacific Islands.
But to return to that section of the lower region
lying between the Columbia and the Straits of Fuca.
The banks of the Cowelitz are generally bare of
timber, but the soil in their immediate vicinity is for
the most part poor. The Hudson's Bay Company,
however, have a fine farm of six hundred acres in its
western valley, which in 1841 produced seven thousand bushels of wheat. The average produce is
twenty bushels to the acre. They have also a saw,
and grist mill now in operation there, both of which
find a market for their products in the Sandwich and
other islands of Polynesia. Live stock do not succeed well on these farms, and this is owing to the
absence of low prairie grounds near the river, and 240
also to the extensive depredations of the wolves.
The hilly portion of the country immediately around,
though its soil is very good, is too heavily timbered
to be available for agricultural purposes, and this is
also the case with many portions of the level land.
There are, however, large tracts of fine prairie at
intervals between, suitable for cultivation and ready
for the plough.
Proceeding northward, we came to Fort Nasqually,
a fine harbour at the southern point of Puget's Sound.
Here the Hudson's Bay Company have another fine
settlement, and raise wheat (fifteen bushels to the
acre), oats, peas, potatoes, and make butter for the
Russian settlements. On the islands of the sound,
and on the upper sections of Admiralty Inlet, the
Indians cultivate potatoes in great abundance. These
vegetables are extremely fine, and constitute a large
portion of their food.
Having disposed of this section, we come now to
that portion of the lower region lying south of the
Columbia, between the President's Range and the
coast. This, by universal agreement, is admitted to
be the finest portion of all Oregon. It is entered by
the Willamette River, about five miles below Vancouver, which stream extends into its bosom over
two hundred miles. This river is navigable for
steam-boats and vessels of light draught for nearly
forty miles, when you come to a fall—the invariable
feature of the rivers of this territory.    Above the tfOMH0(e«K&
*:?»   -  :'
falls are the principal settlements of Oregon. Here
the American adventurers have principally established
themselves, and by the contributions of the emigrations from the States their number is rapidly increasing. As these settlements are described with some
particularity in the journal which concludes this
work, we will omit a particular account of them in
this place.
The fertile portion of the valley of the Willamette
is about two hundred and fifty miles long, and averages about seventy in width, making in all a surface
of more than seventeen thousand square miles of rich
arable land. The soil is an unctuous, heavy, black
loam, which yields to the producer a ready and profuse return for the slightest outlay of his labour.
The climate is mild throughout the year, but the
summer is warm and very dry. From April to October, while the sea breezes prevail, rain- seldom falls
in any part of Oregon. During the other months,
and while the south winds blow, the rains are frequent, and at times abundant.
In the vallies of the low country snow is seldom
seen, and the ground is so rarely frozen that ploughing may generally be carried on the whole winter.
In 1834 the Columbia was frozen over for thirteen
days, but this was principally attributable to the
accumulation of ice from above. | This country,"
says Wyeth, "is well calculated for wheat, barley,
oats, rye, peas, apples, potatoes, and all the vegetables
Y m
cultivated in the northern part of the Union. Indian
corn does not succeed well, and is an unprofitable
A letter * recently received from Oregon, and
giving an account of last year's crop, will serve to
show the wonderful productiveness of this delightful
region, f
Of this valley Lieutenant Wilkes says, " the wheat
yields  thirty-five  or forty bushels  for  one bushel
" The harvest is just at hand, and such crops of wheat, barley,
oats, peas, and potatoes, are seldom, if ever, to be seen in the States,
that of wheat in particular—the stalks being in many instances as
high as my head, the grains generally much larger—I would not
much exaggerate to say they are as large again as those grown
east of the mountains. The soil is good, and the climate most superior, being mild the year round, and very healthy, more so than
any country I have lived in the same length of time. Produce
bears an excellent price—pork, ten cents ; beef, six cents; potatoes,
fifty cents ; wheat, one dollar per bushel. These articles are purchased at the above prices with great avidity by the merchants for
shipment generally to the Sandwich Islands and Russian settlements on this continent, and are paid for mostly in stores and
groceries, the latter of which is the product of these islands, particularly sugar and coffee, of which abundant supplies are furnished.
Wages for labourers are high—common hands are getting from one
to two dollars per day, and mechanics from two to four dollars per
day. It is with difficulty men can be procured at these prices, so
easily can they do better on their farms. The plains are a perpetual meadow, furnishing two complete new crops in a year, spring
and fall, the latter remaining green through the winter. Beef is
killed from the grass at any season of the year. If you have any
enterprise left, or if your neighbours have any, here is the place
for them."
f The above is an extract of a letter from General McCarver,
who is at present the Speaker of the Lower House of Oregon. HISTORY  OF  OREGON".
sown; or from twenty to thirty to the acre. Its
quality is superior to that grown in the United
States, and its weight is nearly four pounds to the
bushel heavier. The above is the yield of the new
land; but it is believed it will greatly exceed this
after the third crop, when the land has been broken
up and well tilled. In comparison to our own
country, I would say that the labour necessary to
acquire wealth or subsistence is in proportion of one
to three; or, in other words, a man must work
through the year three times as much in the United
States to gain the same competency. The care of
stock, which occupies so much time with us, requires
no attention here, and on the increase alone a man
might find support."
South of the valley of the Willamette we come to
that of the Umpqua, in which are found large prairies
of unsurpassable arable land, though the vicinage of
the river is chiefly remarkable for its gigantic pine
timber. Some idea of the extraordinary size of its
forest trees may be obtained from the fact that their
seed cones are sometimes more than a foot in length.
Below the Umpqua we next arrive at the country
watered by the Tootootutna, or Rouges River, and
beyond that, to the voluptuous valley of the Klamet.
These lower portions of the first region are thought
by many to be the paradise of the whole territory,
excelling in richness of soil and voluptuousness of
climate even the celebrated valley of the Willamette.
Of this opinion is Lieutenant Wilkes, to whose exertions and researches we are indebted for most of
our accurate geographical knowledge of the western
portion of Oregon. Indeed, probability seems to be
in favour of regarding the vallies of the Klamet,
Tootootutna, and the Umpqua, as the gardens of the
west, and the cause of the preference of the northern
portions is to be attributed mostly to the readier
access afforded to them by the avenue of the Columbia. Population, however, is already gradually encroaching further and further south, and but few
years will elapse before coasters will be running
down to the mouths of these three rivers for their
agricultural products.
The principal settlement of the Hudson's Bay Company is situated at Vancouver, on the Columbia; a
point ninety miles from its mouth. At this station
the main branch of foreign commerce is carried on,
and from it the chief exports in the way of pine
plank, the grains, butter, &c, is made to the Russian
settlements, and to the islands of the ocean. They
have another farm upon the Fallatry plains, west of
the Willamette and about ten miles from Vancouver,
which is also well stocked, and in productive cultivation.
Before concluding our description of this portion
of Oregon, it may be well to state that the continual
influx of emigrants from the States at the station of
the Willamette, and the occasional connections of in- "
terest, rendered it necessary, in the absence of protection from the laws of the Republic, that the American settlers should establish a territorial government
for themselves. They have accordingly proceeded to
constitute two legislative bodies, to appoint a Chief
Justice, and make the necessary ministerial officers
to enforce his decisions.
The two houses meet at stated periods in the year
for the transaction of all the necessary business of
the little body politic, and the degree of importance
which the new legislature has already obtained may
be estimated by the fact that the officers of the Hudson's Bay Company have accorded their acknowledgment of its powers, by applying through the chief
governor of all the stations in the territory (Doctor
McLaughlin) for a charter for a canal around the
Willamette Falls. The exclusive right was granted
to him for twenty years, on the condition that he
should, in two years, construct a canal around them
sufficient for the passage of boats thirteen feet in
This recognition of the authority of the legislative
confederacy would, however, be a politic course in
the resident governor of the Hudson's Bay Company,
even though he should be ever so averse to it; for
such recognition would not affect the interests of his
association in case it were overthrown by his own
government, and it would afford him, meanwhile, an
opportunity for the quiet pursuit of his plans.    It is 246
but just, however, to bear in mind, that the jurisdiction exercised by the company over all the citizens
in the territory, previous to this legislative convention, was not their own arrogation, but the investiture of the British Government, for its own special
objects; and it is no less just to say that this power
was exercised by the gentleman above named, during
his rule, with a temperance and fairness but seldom
found in those who have no immediate superior to
account to.
The letter that brings us this latter information
also tells us the Doctor has already commenced his
work with a large number of hands, and that there
is no doubt of his perfect ability to complete it within
the time named. He was likewise constructing at
the date of this information (last August) a large
flouring mill with four run of burs, which was to be
ready for business last fall.
The Rivers.
Having completed a description of the general
characteristics of the three regions of Oregon, there
remains but one feature of its geography unfinished ;
and as that extends for the most part continuously
from region to region, it could not be properly embraced in the particular account of any one. We
allude to the course and characteristics of the Columbia River and its tributaries.
The northern branch of the Columbia River rises HISTORY  OF  OREGON.
in latitude 50 deg. north, and 116 min. west (from
Greenwich) thence it pursues a northern route to
McGillivray's Pass in the Rocky Mountains. There
it meets the Canoe River, and by that tributary ascends north-westerly for eighty miles more. At the
boat encampment at the pass, another stream also
joins it through the mountains, and here the Columbia is 3,600 feet above the level of the sea. It now
turns south, having some obstructions to its safe
navigation in the way of rapids, receiving many tributaries in its course to Colville, among which the
Beaver, Salmon, Flatbow, and Clarke's Rivers from
the east, and the Colville and two smaller tributaries
higher up from the west, are the chief.
This great river is bounded thus far on its course
by a range of high, well-wooded mountains, and in
places expands into a line of lakes before it reaches
Colville, where it is 2,049 feet above the level of the
sea, having a fall of 550 feet in 220 miles.
Fort Colville stands in a plain of 2,000 or 3,000
acres. There the Hudson's Bay Company have a
considerable settlement and a farm under cultivation,
producing from 3,000 to 4,000 bushels of different
grains, with which many of their other forts are supplied. On Clarke's River the company have another
post called Flathead House, situated in a rich and
beautiful country spreading westward to the bases of
the Rocky Mountains. On the Flatbow also the
company have a post, named Fort Kootanie. 248
From Fort Colville the Columbia trends westward
for about sixty miles, and then receives the Spokan
from the south. This river rises in the lake of the
Pointed Heart, which lies in the bosom of extensive
plains of the same name. It pursues a north-westerly
course for about two hundred miles, and then empties
into the Columbia. Its valley, according to Mr
Spaulding, an American Missionary who surveyed it,
may be extensively used as a grazing district; but
its agricultural capabilities are limited. The chief
features of its region are (like those of the upper
country, through which we have already traced the
Columbia and its tributaries) extensive forests of
timber and wide sandy plains intersected by bold and
high mountains.
From the Spokan the Columbia continues its
westerly course for sixty miles, receiving several
smaller streams, until it comes to the Okanagan, a
river finding its source in a line of lakes to the north,
and affording boat and canoe navigation to a considerable extent up its course. On the east side of this
river, and near its junction with the Columbia, the
Company have another station called Fort Okanagan.
Though the country bordering on the Okanagan is
generally worthless, this settlement is situated among
a number of small, but rich arable plains.
After passing the Okanagan, the Columbia takes a
southward turn, and runs in that direction for one
hundred and sixty miles to Wallawalla, receiving in HISTORY OF  OREGON.
its course the Piscous, the Ekama, and Entyatecoom
from the west, and lastly, the Saptin or Lewis River
from the south. From this point the part of the
Columbia which we have traced, though obstructed
by rapids, is navigable for canoes to the Boat Encampment, a distance of five hundred miles to the
north. The Saptin takes its rise in the Rocky
Mountains, passes through the Blue, and reaches the
Columbia after having pursued a north-westerly direction for five hundred and twenty miles. It brings
a large volume of water to the latter stream, but in
consequence of its extensive and numerous rapids, it
is not navigable even for canoes, except in reaches.
This circumstance is to be deplored, as its course is
the line of route for the emigration of the States. It
receives a large number of tributaries, of which the
Kooskooske and Salmon are the chief. Our previous
account of the arid and volcanic character of this
region obviates the necessity of a farther description
here. There is a trading station upon the Saptin
near the southern boundary line, called Fort Hall,
and one also near its junction with the Columbia,
called Fort Wallawalla. The Columbia at Walla-
walla is twelve hundred and eighty-four feet above
the level of the sea, and about three thousand five
hundred feet wide. It now takes it last turn to
the westward, pursuing a rapid course of eighty
miles to the Cascades, and receiving the Umatilla,
QuisnelPs,  John   Day's,  and  Chute  Rivers   from 250
the south, and Cathlata's from the north.    At the
Cascades   the   navigation  of   the  river   is   interrupted by a series of falls and rapids, caused by
the immense volume forcing  its way through the
gorge of the President's Range.    From the Cascades
there is still-water navigation for forty miles, when
the river is again obstructed by rapids; after passing
these, it is navigable for one hundred and twenty
miles to the ocean.    The only other great independent
river in the territory is the Tacoutche or Frazer's
River.    It takes its rise in the Rocky Mountains
near the source of Canoe River; thence it takes a
north-westerly course for eighty miles, when it makes
a turn  southward, receiving Stuart's River, which
brings down its waters from a chain of lakes extending
to the 56th degree of latitude.    Turning down from
Stuart's River, the Tacoutche pursues a southerly
course  until  it reaches  latitude 49 deg., where it
breaks through the Cascade range in a succession of
falls and rapids, then turns to the west, and after a
course of seventy miles more, disembogues into the
Gulf of Georgia, on the Straits of Fuca, in latitude
47 deg. 7 min.   Its whole length is three hundred and
fifty miles, but it is only navigable for seventy miles
from its mouth by vessels drawing twelve feet of
water.    It has three trading posts upon it belonging
to the company: Fort Langley at its mouth, Fort
Alexandria at the junction of a small stream a few
miles south of Quisnell's River, and another at the HISTORY  OF   OREGON.
junction of Stuart's River.    The country drained by
this river is poor and generally unfit for cultivation.
The climate is extreme in its variations of heat and
cold, and in the fall months dense fogs prevail, which
bar every object from the eye beyond the distance
of a hundred yards.    The chief features of the section
are extensive forests, transverse ranges of low countries, and vast tracts of marshes and lakes, formed
by  the  streams descending  from  the   surrounding
The character of the great rivers is peculiar —
rapid and sunken much below the level of the country,
with perpendicular banks, they run as it were in
trenches, which make it extremely difficult to get at
the water in many places, owing to their steep basaltic walls. They are at many points contracted by
dalles, or narrows, which during the rise, back the
water some distance, submerging islands and tracts
of low prairie, and giving them the appearance of
extensive lakes.
The soil along the river bottoms is generally
alluvial, and would yield good crops, were it not for
the overflowing of the rivers which check and kill
the grain. Some of the finest portions of the land
are thus unfitted for cultivation. They are generally
covered with water before the banks are overflown,
in consequence of the quicksands that exist in them,
and through which the water percolates.
The rise of the streams flowing from the Cascade 252
Mountains takes place twice a year, in February and
November, and are produced by heavy and abundant
rains. The rise of the Columbia takes place in May
and June, and is attributable to the melting of the
snows. Sometimes the swell of the latter is very
sudden, if heavy rains should also happen at that
period; but it is generally gradual, and reaches its
greatest height from the 6th to the 15th of June.
Its perpendicular rise is from eighteen to twenty feet
at Vancouver, where a line of embankment has been
thrown up to protect the lower prairie; but it has
generally been flooded during these visitations, and
the crops often destroyed.
The greatest rise of the Willamette takes place
in February, and sometimes ascending to the height
of twenty feet, does considerable damage. Both this
river and the Cowelitz are much swollen by the
backing of their waters during the height of the
Columbia, all their lower grounds being at such times
submerged. This puts an effectual bar to the border prairies being used for anything but pasturage.
This happily is fine throughout the year, except in
the season of floods, when the cattle must be driven
to the high grounds.
The lakes of Oregon are numerous and well die-
tributed in the different regions of the territory. In
the northern section the Okanagan (from which
flows the river of that name), Stuart's, and Frazer's,
near the upper boundary; Quisnell's in 53 deg., and HISTORY OF  OREGON.
Klamloop's in 51 deg., are the largest. In the central section we have the Flatbow, the Cour d'Alene,
or " Pointed Heart," and the Kullespelm; and in the
southern district are the Klamet, the Pit, and an
abundance of inferior lakes, as yet unnoticed on the
maps, and for which geographers have not yet been
able to discover names. Several of the latter are
salt, and, at intervals, we find chains of hot springs
bubbling in some places above the ground, like those
of Iceland. The smaller lakes are said to add much
to the picturesque beauty of the streams.
The whole territory is well watered in all directions, and from the peculiar character of its rivers,
their descent, the rapidity of their currents, and their
frequent falls, there is perhaps no country in the
world which affords so many facilities for manufacturing purposes through the agency of water power.
This is a peculiarly happy circumstance, when taken
into consideration with the fact that the timber
overspreading the western portion, and clustering
around its mill sites, will for a long time form one
of the principal exports in the markets of the Pacific.
This will appear from the high prices which it now
commands, and also from the fact that no other
portion of the north-west coast produces it. Already
trading vessels resort to the mouth of the Columbia
to supply themselves with spars, and other necessary
materials, and the improving facilities of inland in*-
tercommunication has directed some of it from point
to point within the territory.
Having now completed our account of the great
physical characteristics of Oregon, our attention naturally turns to those portions of its natural history
which are equally necessary to render a land serviceable to the wants of man. Of these, the first and
most important are the fisheries. "These," says
Lieutenant Wilkes, " are so immense, that the whole
native population subsist on them." All the rivers,
bays, harbours, and shores, of the coast and islands,
abound in salmon, sturgeon, cod, carp, sole, flounders,
ray, perch, herring, lamprey eels, and a kind of smelt
or sardine, which is extremely abundant. The different kinds predominate alternately, according to
the situations of the respective fisheries, but the
salmon abound everywhere over all. This superior
fish is found in the largest quantities in the Columbia,
and the finest of them are taken at the Dalles. They
run twice a-year, May and October, and appear in-k
exhaustible. To so great an extent is traffic in them
aleady advanced, that the establishment at Vancouver
alone exports ten thousand barrels of them annually.
There are also large quantities of oysters, clams, crabs,
mussels, and other kinds of shell-fish, found in the
different bays and creeks of the country; and, to
complete this piscatory feature, we are further told
that whales are also found in numbers along the coast HISTORY OF  OREGON.
and at the mouth of the Strait of Fuca, where they
are frequently captured by the piscivorous aborigines.
Of game an equal abundance exists. In the
spring and fall the rivers literally swarm with geese,
duck, cranes, swans, and other species of water-fowl:
and the elk, deer, antelope, bear, wolf, fox, marten,
beaver, muskrat, grizzly bear, and siffleur, make, with
them, the harvest of the hunter's rifle. In the middle
section little or no game is to be found, but in the
third region, the buffalo are plenty, and form an attraction to numerous hunting parties of the Blackfeet
and Oregon Indians.
The population of Oregon territory has been estimated by Lieutenant Wilkes to be about 20,000, of
whom 19,200 or 300 are aborigines, and the remaining 700 or 800, whites. This number and its proportions have, however, increased and varied considerably since the time of his estimate. The years
succeeding his visit beheld large emigrations from
the States, and the white population of Oregon may
now be safely set down as being between 2,000 and
3,000, of whom the majority are from the States.
The largest portion of these are located in the valley
of the Willamette, where, as we have already seen,
they have adopted a government of their own. The
other white inhabitants are sprinkled about in different
portions of the territory, at the establishments of the
Hudson's Bay Company, whose officers and servants
amount, in all, to between 500 and 600, but this mmm
number does not include their Iroquois and Sandwich
Island serfs.
There are no means of ascertaining with accuracy
the numbers of the aboriginal population, as many of
them move from place to place in the fishing seasons;
but, for the purpose of furnishing the reader with the
nearest warrant for reliance, we will here insert a
tabular statement, prepared by Mr Crawford, of the
Indian department, for the use of last Congress.
Indians West of the Rocky Mountains, in the Oregon
District, and their Numbers.
Nes Perces
- 2,000
-    200
Flatheads    -
-1 800
Speannaros -
-     240
Cour D'Alene
-     400
Shoshonies -
- 1,800
- 2,600
- 3,000
Catlashoots -
-     430
- 2,000
Willewahs   -
- 1,000
-     200
Cootomies -
- 2,400
Chilts   f   -
-     800
Echebools    -
- 1,000
Chinookes   -
-     400
Wahupums -
- 1,000
- 1,000
Euesteurs    -
- 1,200
Cathlamahs -
-     200
Clackamurs -
- 1,800
-     200
-     400
- 2,500
- 3,000
The most numerous and warlike of the Oregon
Indians are in the islands to the north, but on the
main land they are generally friendly and well-disposed. They are, however, rapidly passing away
before the advancing destiny of a superior race, and
with the wild game, vanish gradually from the white
man's tracks. Those remaining are a servile and
degraded class, who perform the meanest offices of
the settlements, and readily consent to a mode of
existence under the missionaries and other settlers,
but little short of vassalage. In the Willamette
valley there are now left but a few remnants of the
once numerous and powerful tribes that formerly
inhabited it. At the mouth of the Columbia there
are some few of the Chenooks still left, and about
the Cascades and at the Dalles still linger considera-
ble numbers of this ill-fated and fast-fading people.
There is no longer any spirit left in them; their
hearts are broken, their bows unstrung, and from
lords of the soil they have sunk to the degradation of
its slaves.
The Kiuses and Nes Perces still maintain a portion of their independence, but numbers of them,
through the exertions of the missionaries, have made
considerable advances in civilization, and many more
would doubtless adapt themselves to a more methodical system of life, were not the first lessons of the
science an exaction of their labours for the benefit of
others.    At the present they can only be regarded 258
in the light of a servile population, which, in the
existing dearth of labour, is rendered of vast service
to the active settler. In speaking of the influences of
the missionaries over the Indians, Lieutenant Wilkes
remarks: % They have done but little towards Christianizing the natives, being principally engaged in
cultivating the mission farms, and in the increase of
their own flocks and herds. As far as my personal
observation went, there are very few Indians to
engage their attention, and they seemed more occupied with the settlement of the country and agricultural pursuits than in missionary labours."
The treatment of the Indians by the Hudson's Bay
Company is politic and judicious; they rigidly enforce that wise provision of their charter which forbids the sale of ardent spirits, and in carrying it out
have even been known, upon the arrival of a vessel at
the Columbia with spirits aboard, to purchase that
portion of the cargo, to prevent others from defeating
the wisdom of the prohibition. Schools for the native
children are attached to all the principal trading posts,
and particular care is extended to the education of
the half-breed children,* the joint offspring of the
traders and the Indian women, who are retained and
bred, as far as possible, among the whites, and subsequently employed, when found capable, in the service
of the company.    The policy of this course is obvious.
* A natural obligation where so many are born.   HO
Embracing the whole Southern Fields of Emigration,
and the most recent information relating to—
1. The Cape of Good Hope.
2. Port Natal.
3. New Zealand.
4. New South Wales.
South Australia.
6. Australia Felix.
7. Western Australia.
8. Yan Diemen's Land.
9. Auckland Islands.
10. Falkland Islands.
By the same Author.
Price One Shilling.
" The name of Sidney Smith is familiar to most people as that of a
writer and thinker of more than a score of years standing. We were
attracted to the book at the outset by its great Literary superiority
over other productions of the class. The compiler is obviously a
practised writer, a working author, and is as much at home in
reasoning as in describing, in philosophy as in bare statistics. We
do not hesitate to say that we consider the work to be a most useful
Pride is a sin that will rise out of the aslws of other sins to**s^^
The evil J bring upon myself is the hardest to bear,
and impartial publiqation ; and even without reference to any practical purpose of emigration, extremely well adapted for the perusal of
the general reader."—Chambers1 Journal.
" The notices of the several localities are copious and derived from
reliable sources ; while the author's way of treating his subjects is
such as will, in all probability, lead the reader who takes up his book
from mere curiosity, in the end to enquire of himself whether he has
no personal interest in this universal movement towards other countries."—The Emigrant.
| The Settler's Home, &c, by Sidney Smith.—It is a good sign
of the times in which we live, that men like the author of this
valuable, most useful, and cheap work, are seriously turning their
attention to the best way of teaching the " surplus population" how
to Emigrate. It is idle, we fear, for comfortably-provided-for writers
and speakers to point to the uncultivated waste lands of Great Britain,
and to the overgrown farms of the Western, Midland, and Northern
Counties, and say,' let these acres be cultivated, and you need have
no paupers—let those 2000 acre farms be divided into ten 200 acre
farms, and you'will employ five times the number of labourers.' The
somewhat hackneyed but trite saying ' while the grass grows the j ^
steed starves' is
applicable 1
re : while the propriety of carrying out
such and other plans is being considered, the population of Great
Britain increases nearly 1,300 daily. Within ten years there will be
an addition of more than 5,000,000 souls, and henceforth the, increase
j| will be in a geometrical proportion. There is a surplus population,
and sensible men are at least alive to the necessity of facilitating that
large and continuous stream of emigration that must of necessity be
henceforth encouraged, to the mutual benefit of the emigrants of the
old country, and of the colonies. In 'the Settler's New Home' Mr.
Smith powerfully lays open this necessity, and the chapters on the
motives for, and general advantage of, emigration, are especially
admirable. It is to be desired that the circulation of the work may
be so extensive as to achieve all the good it is capable of. A man
could not do a kinder act to his poor neighbour than to put this book
in his hands, and having well perused and considered it, no one could
do a wiser thjng tfyan act on its advice. So much that is tr'u0>and
forcible meets the eye on every page, that it is difficult to select any
sentence to convey an idea of the forcible and conclusive nature of
the work, and we can but repeat the desire that it may experience a
very general perusal, especially among those who have doubtful, or no
occupation in Fatherland."—Morning Advertiser^ May 22nd, 1849.
" This is a very neatly got up work, containing a vast amount of
information for the price."—Weekly Register.
" Of all the safeguards against the dangers surrounding the inexperienced settler, the very best that has yet come to our knowledge is
a little volume, penned by a gentleman evidently well versed in the
subject upon which he has written. The wording of the title-page
sufficiently explains the utility of the pamphlet, and a glance through
the contents will amply evidence the valuable and practical character
fete ■
A just man hateth the evil, but not the evil doer, $3
gift can exhaust genius or impoverish charity.
of its information. A wider range of settlements could scarcely have
been taken in at one survey, a fact which must be instantly apparent
when we remark that the author has here successively recounted the
advantages and disadvantages, &c, &c. For these reasons, we cannot
but regard this volume from the pen of Mr. Sidney Smith as one
which must prove in a thousand particulars altogether inestimable.
His philosophy, moreover, is wholly genial, like that which suffuses
such an agreeable charm over the writings of the gallant but unfortunate Buxton. In proof of this take the following felicitous comparison of the comforts and inconveniences of emigration," &c.—The
Sun/Msy 26th, 1849,
By the same Author.
The Principles of Phrenology. Second Edition, 35
cuts, 3 plates. Cast, development, and character of Rush. Chapter on moral responsibility and the punishment of death. 5s. 6d.
cloth. 1849
The Punishment of Death, and, Moral Responsibility,
with casts of the head of J. B. Rush, his development and character.    3d.
A History of England:   combining the various His-
tories by Rapin, Henry, Hume, Smollett, and Belsham: corrected
by reference to Turner, Lingard, Mackintosh, Hallam, Brodie,
Godwin, and other sources. Compiled and arranged by Gr. F.
Tomlins, Editor of the f History of the United States," " Ancient
Universal History," &c, &c. From the Invasion by the Romans,
b. c. 55, to the Birth of the Prince of Wales, a. d. 1841. Embellished with Portraits of all the Kings and Queens of England,
from William the Conqueror to Queen Victoria ; and other Engravings.    6 vols, half bound, calf neat.    £2. 10.
Banks and Bankers. A Treatise on Banking, with
an Appendix comprising a Review of the Failures amongst Private
and Joint Stock Banks. By D. Hardcastle. Post 8vo., 2s. 6d.
(Published at 10s. 6d.) 1843
Bankers Clerk; comprising the Principles and Practice of Banking.    12mo. sewed, Is. 6d.   (Published at  2s. 6d.)
Cowper's Poetical Works. Royal 18mo. Elegantly-
bound in cloth, gilt edges.   Seven beautiful Plates, 3s.
The Holiday Book. By Martin. Numerous Woodcuts.    Cloth, gilt edges, 2s. 6d.
Evenings at Home. By Dr. Aikin and Mrs. Bar-
bauld.    Woodcuts, large type, cloth, gilt edges, 2s. 6d.
I A series of the most amusing and instructive dialogues ever published for children."
Woodcuts invented 1460. Divine Origin and Obligation of Marriage.    3d.
The Reformation a direct gift, of Divine Provi-
Papal Rome :   the Principles and Practices of   §^
Rome alike condemned by the Gospel.
  The Holy  Bible,  the Restorer of Christianity.
The above Eight Sermons, bound neatly in cloth, for 2s. 6d.
The Year of Revolutions.    1848.    3d.
Croly's (Dr.) Marston; or the Soldier and Statesman.
3 vols. 12s. 6d.    (Published at £1.1 Is. 6d.)
  Salathiel: a Story of the Past, the Present,
and the Future.    3 vols. 9s. 6d.    (Published at £1. lis, 66l.)
Historical Sketches, Speeches, and Characters.
8vo. cloth, 3s. 6d.    (Published at 10s. 6d.)
  New Interpretation of the Apocalypse of St.
John ; with Notes, &c.    8vo. 5s. 6d.
  Poetical Works.   2 vols. 8vo. 9s.   (Published
a I
The History of Sandford and Merton.    By T. Day.
12mo. cloth, gilt edges, good large type, seven Plates, 3s.
Milton's  Poetical   Works.     12mo.   cloth,  gilt  edges. | |
Plates, 3s. 6d.
i   ~
Seventy-two beautiful Prints, after Turner, Martin, &c,
&c, for Scrap-Books, &c, only 5s. 6d.
Thirty-two Portraits, and 40 Views.     Engraved by   §
Finden.     Illustrating   Lord   Byron's  Works.     The  72  Prints
for 8s.
Richard Barrett, Printer, 13, Mark Lane.
Confide not in him who has once deceived you.    


Citation Scheme:


Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics



Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            async >
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:


Related Items