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  • 1832
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his forces at the next election to put out the major: he replied, “I can’t tell that!” I said, “why? will you not oppose him?” “Oh!” he says, “for that matter, he may do his duty pretty well.” “And do you mean to say,” continued I, “that if he should do so, you will give him no opposition?” He looked at me, as if he did not clearly comprehend, and said, “Why, I guess not.”

The boatmen of the Ohio and Mississippi are the most riotous and lawless set of people in America, and the least inclined to submit to the constituted authorities. At Cincinnati I saw one of those persons arrested, on the wharf, for debt. He seemed little inclined to submit; as, could he contrive to escape to the opposite shore, he was safe. He called upon his companions in the flat-boat, who came instantly to his assistance, and were apparently ready to rescue him from the clutches of this trans-Atlantic bum-bailiff. The constable instantly pulled out–not a pistol, but a small piece of paper, and said, “I take him in the name of the States.” The messmates of this unfortunate navigator looked at him for some time, and then one of them said drily, “I guess you must go with the constable.” Subsequently, at New York, one evening returning to my hotel, I heard a row in a tavern, and wishing to see the process of capturing refractory citizens, I entered with some other persons. The constable was there unsupported by any of his brethren, and it seemed to me to be morally impossible that, without assistance, he could take half a dozen fellows, who were with difficulty restrained from whipping each other. However, his hand seemed to be as potent as the famous magic wand of Armida, for on placing it on the shoulders of the combatants, they fell into the ranks, and marched off with him as quietly as if they had been sheep. The rationale of the matter is this: those men had all exercised the franchise, if not in the election of these very constables, of others, and they therefore not only considered it to be their duty to support the constable’s authority, but actually felt a strong inclination to do so. Because they _knew_ that the authority he exercised was only delegated to him by themselves, and that, in resisting him, they would resist their own sovereignty. Even in large towns in the western country, the constable has no men under his command, but always finds most powerful allies in the citizens themselves, whenever a lawless scoundrel, or a culprit is to be captured.

At Flemingsburg I saw an Albino, a female about fourteen years old. Her parents were clear negros, of the Congo or Guinea race, and in every thing but colour she perfectly resembled them. Her form, face, and hair, possessed the true negro characteristics–curved shins, projecting jaw, retreating forehead, and woolly head. The skin was rather whiter than that of the generality of Europeans, but was deficient in glossiness, and although perfectly smooth, had a dry appearance. The wool on the head was of a light flaxen colour, and the iris of the eye was of a reddish-blue tinge. Her eyes were so weak as to bear with difficulty the glare of day. Most Albinos are dim sighted until twilight, when they appear to have as perfect vision as persons with the strongest sight, and in many cases, even more acute. This individual had evidently weak sight, as the eyelids were generally half closed, and she always held her head down during day light.

Near the banks of the Ohio, full three hundred miles from the sea, I found conglomerations of marine shells, mixed with siliceous earth; and in nearly all the runs throughout Kentucky, limestone pebbles are found, bearing the perfect impressions of the interior of shells. The most abundant proofs are every where exhibited, that at one period the vast savannahs and lofty mountains of the New world were submerged; and perhaps the present bed of the ocean was once covered with verdure, and the seat of the sorrows and joys of myriads of human beings, who erected cities, and built pyramids, and monuments, which Time has long since swept away, and wrapt in his eternal mantle of oblivion. That a constant, but almost imperceptible change is hourly taking place in the earth’s surface, appears to be established; and independent of the extraordinary _bouleversements_, which have at intervals convulsed our globe, this gradual revolution has produced, and will produce again, a total alteration in the face of nature.


[14] Amongst other plans to this effect, there is one proposed, by which midshipmen on half-pay will be obliged to make at least two voyages annually, in merchant ships, as mates, and all others must have done so, in order to entitle them to be reinstated in their former rank. Another is, that there shall be small vessels, rigged and fitted out in war style, appropriated to the purpose of teaching pupils, practically, the science of navigation, and the discipline necessary to be observed on board vessels of war. The Americans may not eat their fish with silver forks, nor lave their fingers in the most approved style; yet they are by no means so contemptible a people as some of our small gentry affect to think. They may too, occasionally, be put down in political argument, by the dogmatical method of the quarter-deck; but I must confess that _I_ never was so fortunate as to come in contact with any who reasoned so badly as the persons Captain Bazil Hall introduces in his book.


The wailings of the Cherokee, the Choctaw, and the Creek, may have been wafted across the waters of the great salt lake, and the Pale-face in his own land may have heard their lamentations;–but the distant voice is scattered by the passing winds, and is heard like the whisper of a summer breeze as it steals along the prairies of the west, or the cry of the wish-ton-wish as it faintly reaches the ear of the navigator, when, in the stilly night, he floats down “the old father of waters.”

The present posture of Indian affairs, and the peculiar situation of the Indian nations east of the Mississippi, have caused that unfortunate people to be the topic of much political controversy and conversation; a succinct account of the political condition of these tribes, and of the policy which has been pursued, and which is being pursued towards them, by the executive government, may not therefore be uninteresting.

When Georgia, by becoming a member of the Union, ceded part of her sovereignty to the general executive, that government acknowledged her claimed limits, and guaranteed to her the protection of the Union against foreign and domestic violence. Subsequently, in the year of 1802, in consideration of a certain portion of lands ceded, the United States became bound to purchase for Georgia, any claim which the Cherokee nation might have on lands within her boundaries, whenever such purchase could be made on reasonable terms. On these positions are based the Georgian claims, which the United States government has hitherto pleaded inability to satisfy, inasmuch as all efforts to purchase the Indian lands have proved fruitless.

After the lapse of twenty-seven years, Georgia, finding herself precisely in the same condition in which she then stood, has determined on forcibly taking possession of the Cherokee lands, and extending her sovereignty over the Cherokee people. But as this cannot be effected without doing manifest violence to the Indian rights, she brings forward arguments to show, that _she_ never acknowledged the independence of the Cherokee nation; that that nation, from the time of the first settlement made by Europeans in America, stood in the position of a conquered people; that the sovereignty consequently dwelt in the hands of Great Britain; and that, on the Declaration of independence, Georgia, by becoming a free state, became invested with all the powers of sovereignty claimed or exercised by Great Britain over the Georgian territory: and further, that in November, 1785, when the first and only treaty was concluded with the Cherokees by the United States, during the articles of confederation, both she and North Carolina entered their solemn protests against this alleged violation of their legislative rights. The executive government pretends not to argue the case with Georgia, and is left no alternative but either to annul its _conditional_ treaty with that state, or to cancel _thirteen distinct treaties_ entered into with the Indians, despoil them of their lands, and rob them of their independence. Jackson’s message says, “It is too late to inquire whether it was just in the United States to include them and their territory within bounds of new states, whose limits they could control. That step cannot be retracted. A state cannot be dismembered by Congress, or restrained in the exercise of her constitutional powers.” Here the executive government acknowledges that it made promises to Georgia, which it has been unable to perform–that it guaranteed to that state the possession of lands over which it had no legitimate control, on the mere assumption of being able to make their purchase.

The Cherokees in their petition and memorials to Congress show, that Great Britain never exercised any sovereignty over them;–that in peace and in war she always treated them as a free people, and never assumed to herself the right of interfering with their internal government:–that in every treaty made with them by the United States, their sovereignty and total independence are clearly acknowledged, and that they have ever been considered as a distinct nation, exercising all the privileges and immunities enjoyed by any independent people. They say, “In addition to that first of all rights, the right of inheritance and peaceable possession, we have the faith and pledge of the United States, over and over again, in treaties made at various times. By these treaties our rights as a separate people are distinctly acknowledged, and guarantees given that they shall be secured and protected. So we have also understood the treaties. The conduct of the government towards us, from its organization until very lately–the talks given to our beloved men by the Presidents of the United States–and the speeches of the agents and commissioners–all concur to show that we are not mistaken in our interpretation. Some of our beloved men who signed the treaties are still living, and their testimony tends to the same conclusion.” * * * * “In what light shall we view the conduct of the United States and Georgia in their intercourse with us, in urging us to enter into treaties and cede lands? If we were but tenants at will, why was it necessary that our consent must first be obtained before these governments could take lawful possession of our lands? The answer is obvious. These governments perfectly understand our rights–our right to the country, and our right to self-government. Our understanding of the treaties is further supported by the intercourse law of the United States, which prohibits all encroachment on our territory.”

The arguments used by the Cherokees are unanswerable; but in what will that avail them, when injustice is intended by a superior power, which, regardless of national faith, has determined on taking possession of their lands? The case stands thus: the executive government enters into an agreement with Georgia, and engages to deliver over to the state the Indian possessions within her claimed limits–without the Indians _having any knowledge of, or participation in the transaction._ Now what, may I ask, have the Indians to do with this? Ought they to be made answerable for the gross misconduct of the two governments, and to be despoiled, contrary to every principle of justice, and in defiance of the most plain and fundamental law of property? It puts one in mind of the judgment of the renowned “Walter the Doubter,” who decided between two citizens, that, as their account books appeared to be of equal _weight_, therefore their accounts were balanced, and that _the constable_ should pay the costs. The United States government has made several offers to the Cherokees for their lands; which they have as constantly refused, and said, “that they were very well contented where they were–that they did not wish to leave the bones of their ancestors, and go beyond the Mississippi; but that, if the country be so beautiful as their white brother represents it, they would recommend their white brother to go there himself.”

Georgia presses upon the executive; which, in this dilemma, comes forward with affected sympathy–deplores the unfortunate situation in which it is placed, but of course concludes that faith must be kept with Georgia, and that the Cherokee must either go, or submit to laws that make it far better for him to go than stay. It is true Jackson says in his message, “This emigration should be voluntary; for it would be cruel as unjust to compel the Aborigines to abandon the graves of their fathers, and seek a home in a distant land.” But General Jackson well knows that the laws of Georgia leave the Indian no choice–as no community of men, civilized or savage, could possibly exist under such laws. The benefit and protection of the laws, to which the Indian is made subject, are entirely withheld from him–he can be no party to a suit–he may be robbed and murdered with impunity–his property may be taken, and he may be driven from his dwelling–in fine, he is left liable to every species of insult, outrage, cruelty, and dishonesty, without the most distant hope of obtaining redress; for in Georgia _an Indian cannot be a witness to prove facts against a white man._ Yet General Jackson says, “this emigration should be _voluntary_;” and in the very same paragraph, with a single sweep of the pen, he annihilates all the treaties that have been made with that people–tramples under foot the laws of nations, and deprives the Indian of his hunting-grounds, one of his sources of subsistence. He says,–“But it seems to me visionary to suppose that, in this state of things, claims can be allowed on tracts of country on which they have neither dwelt nor made improvements, merely because they have seen them from the mountain, or passed them in the chase.” It certainly may be unphilosophical to permit any man to possess more ground than he can till with his own hands; yet surely arguments that we do not admit as regards ourselves, we can with no sense of propriety use towards others, particularly when our own acts are directly in the very teeth of this principle. There is more land at present within the limits and in the possession of the United States than would be sufficient to support thirty times the present population–yet to this must be added the hunting-grounds of the Indians, merely because “it is _visionary to suppose_ they have any claim on what they do not _actually occupy!”_

I have now before me the particulars of thirteen treaties[15] made by the United States with the Cherokee nation, from the year 1785 down to 1819 inclusive; in all of which the rights of the Indians are clearly acknowledged, either directly, or by implication; and by the seventh article of the treaty of Holston, executed in 1791, being the first concluded with that people by the United States, under their present constitution, all the lands not thereby ceded are solemnly guaranteed to the Cherokee nation. The subsequent treaties are made with reference to, and in confirmation of this, and continually reiterate the guarantees therein tendered.

To talk of justice, and honour, would be idle and visionary, for these seem to have been thrown overboard at the very commencement of the contest; but I would ask the American _people_, is their conduct towards the Indians politic?–is it politic in America, in the face of civilized nations, to violate treaties? is it politic in her, to hold herself up to the world as faithless and unjust–as a nation, which, in defiance of all moral obligation, will break her most sacred contracts, whenever it becomes no longer her interest to keep them, and she finds herself in a condition to do so with impunity? is she not furnishing foreign statesmen with a ready and powerful argument in defence of their violating treaties with her? can they not with justice say–America has manifested in her proceedings towards the Cherokee nation, that she is faithless–that she keeps no treaties longer than it may be her _interest_ to do so–and are _we_ to make ourselves the dupes of such a power, and wait until she finds herself in a condition to deceive us? I could produce many arguments to illustrate the impolicy of this conduct; but as I intend confining myself to a mere sketch, I shall dwell but as short a time as may be consistent on the several facts connected with the case.

That the Aborigines have been cruelly treated, cannot be doubted. The very words of the Message admit this; and the tone of feeling and conciliation which follows that admission, coupled as it is with the intended injustice expressed in other paragraphs, can be viewed in no other light than as a piece of political mockery. The Message says, “their present condition, contrasted with what they once were, makes a most powerful appeal to our sympathies. Our ancestors found them the uncontrolled possessors of these vast regions. By persuasion and force, they have been made to retire from river to river, and from mountain to mountain, until some of the tribes have become extinct, and others have left but remnants, to preserve for a while their once terrible names.” Now the plan laid down by the president, in order to prevent, if possible, the total decay of the Indian people, is, to send them beyond the Mississippi, and _guarantee_ to them the possession of ample territory west of that river. How far this is likely to answer the purpose _expressed_, let us now examine.

The Cherokees, by their intercourse with and proximity to the white people, have become half civilized; and how is it likely that _their_ condition will be improved by driving them into the forests and barren prairies? That territory is at present the haunt of the Pawnees, the Osages, and other warlike nations, who live almost entirely by the chase, and are constantly waging war even with each other. As soon as the Cherokees, and other half-civilized Indians, appear, they will be regarded as common intruders, and be subject to the united attacks of these people. There are even old feuds existing among themselves, which, it is but too probable, may be renewed. Trappers and hunters, in large parties, yearly make incursions into the country beyond the boundaries of the United States, and in defiance of the Indians kill the beaver and the buffalo–the latter merely for the _tongue and skin_, leaving the carcase to rot upon the ground.[16] Thus is this unfortunate race robbed of their means of subsistence. Moreover, what guarantee can the Indians have, that the United States will keep faith for the future, when it is admitted that they have not done so in times past? How can they be sure that they may not further be driven from river to river, and from mountain to mountain, until they reach the shores of the Pacific; and who can tell but that then it may be found expedient to drive them into the ocean?

The policy of the United States government is evidently to get the Indians to exterminate each other. Its whole proceedings from the time this question was first agitated to the present, but too clearly indicate this intention; and if we wanted proof, that the executive government of the United States _would act_ on so barbarous and inhuman a policy, we need only refer to the allocation of the Cherokees, who exchanged lands in Tennessee for lands west of the Mississippi, pursuant to the treaty of 1819. It was well known that a deadly enmity existed between the Osages and Cherokees, and that any proximity of the two people, would inevitably lead to fatal results; yet, with this knowledge, the executive government placed those Cherokees in the country lying between the Arkansaw and Red rivers, _immediately joining the territory of the Osages._ It is unnecessary to state that the result was _as anticipated_–they daily committed outrages upon the persons and properties of each other, and the death of many warriors, on both sides, ensued.

The sympathy expressed in that part of the Message relating to the Indians, if expressed with sincerity, would do much honour to the feelings that dictated it; but when we come to examine the facts, and investigate the implied allegations, we shall find that they are most gratuitous; and, consequently, that the regret of the president at the probable fate of the Indian, should he remain east of the Mississippi, is grossly hypocritical. He says, “surrounded by the whites, with their arts of civilization, which, by destroying the resources of the savage, doom him to weakness and decay:[17] the fate of the Mohegan, the Narragansett, and the Delaware, is fast overtaking the Choctaw, the Cherokee, and the Creek. That this fate surely awaits them, if they remain within the limits of the States, does not admit of a doubt. Humanity and national honour demand that every effort should be made to avert so great a calamity.” From what facts the president has drawn these conclusions does not appear. Neither the statements of the Cherokees, nor of the Indian agents, nor the report of the secretary of war, furnish any such information; on the contrary, with the exception of one or two agents _at Washington_, all give the most flattering accounts of advancement in civilization. The Rev. Samuel A. Worcester, in his letter to the Rev. E.S. Ely, editor of the “Philadelphian,” completely refutes all the unfavourable statements that have been got up to cover the base conduct of Jackson and the slavites. This gentleman has resided for the last four years among the Cherokees, and has surely had abundant means of observing their condition.

The letter of David Brown (a Cherokee), addressed, September 2, 1825, to the editor of “The Family Visitor,” at Richmond, Virginia, states, that “the Cherokee plains are covered with herds of cattle–sheep, goats, and swine, cover the valleys and hills–the plains and valleys are rich, and produce Indian corn, cotton, tobacco, wheat, oats, indigo, sweet and Irish potatoes, &c. The natives carry on a considerable trade with the adjoining states, and some of them export cotton in boats down the Tennessee to the Mississippi, and down that river to New Orleans. Orchards are common–cheese, butter, &c. plenty–houses of entertainment are kept by natives. Cotton and woollen cloths are manufactured in the nation, and almost every family grows cotton for its own consumption. Agricultural pursuits engage the chief attention of the nation–different branches of mechanics are pursued. Schools are increasing every year, and education is encouraged and rewarded.” To quote David Brown verbatim, on the population,–“In the year 1819, an estimate was made of the Cherokees. Those on the west were estimated at 5,000, and those on the east of the Mississippi, at 10,000 souls. The census of this division of the Cherokees has again been taken within the current year (1825), and the returns are thus made: native citizens, 13,563; white men married in the nation, 147; white women ditto, 73; African slaves, 1177. If this summary of the Cherokee population, from the census, is correct, to say nothing of those of foreign extract, we find that in six years the increase has been 3,563 souls. National pride, patriotism, and a spirit of independence, mark the Cherokee character.” He further states, “the system of government is founded on republican principles, and secures the respect of the people.” An alphabet has been invented by an Indian, named George Guess, the Cherokee Cadmus, and a printing press has been established at New Echota, the seat of government, where there is published weekly a paper entitled, “The Cherokee Phoenix,”–one half being in the English language, and the other in that of the Cherokee.

The report of the secretary of war, upon the present condition of the Indians, states of the Chickesaws and Choctaws, all that has been above said of the Cherokees. But of the last-mentioned people, the secretary’s accounts appear to be studiously defective. Yet the fact is notorious, that both the Chickesaws and Choctaws are far behind the Cherokees in civilization.

With these facts before our eyes, what are we to think of the grief of the president, at the decay and increasing weakness of the Cherokees? Can it be regarded in any way but as a piece of shameless hypocrisy, too glaring in its character to escape the notice even of the most inobservant individual. It has been said that the question involves many difficulties–to me there appears none. The United States, in the year 1791, guarantee to the Indians the possession of all their lands not then ceded–and confirm this by numerous subsequent treaties. In 1802, they promise to Georgia, the possession of the Cherokee lands “_whenever such purchase could be made on reasonable terms_” This is the simple state of the case; and if the executive were inclined to act uprightly, the line of conduct to be pursued could be determined on without much difficulty. Georgia has no right to press upon the executive the fulfilment of engagements which were made conditionally, and consequently with an implied reservation; and the United States should not violate _many positive treaties_, in order to fulfil _a conditional one_.[18]

I shall now advert to some of the charges touching the character of the Indians. It is said, that they are debauched and insincere. This charge has been particularly made against the Creeks, and I believe is not altogether unfounded. Yet, if this be now the character of the once warlike and noble Creek, let the white man ask himself who has made him so? Who makes the “firewater,” and who supplies the untutored savage with the means of intoxication? The white-man, when he wishes to trade profitably with the Indian, fills the cup, and holds it forth–he says, ‘drink, my brother, it is good’–the red-man drinks, and the wily white points at his condition, says he is uncivilized, and should go forth from the land, for his presence is contamination!

As to the charge of hypocrisy–this too has been taught or forced upon the Indians by the conduct of the whites. Missionaries have been constantly going among them, teaching dogmas and doctrines, far beyond the comprehension of some learned white-men, and to the savage totally unintelligible. These gentlemen have told long stories; and when posed by some quaint saying, or answered by some piece of traditional information, handed down from generation to generation, by the fathers and mothers of the tribe, have found it necessary to purchase the acquiescence of a few Indians by bribes, in order that their labours might not seem to have been altogether unsuccessful. This conduct of the Missionaries was soon _understood_ by the Indians, and the temptation held out was too great to be resisted. Blankets and gowns converted, when inspiration and gospel truths had failed.

Mr. Houston of Tennessee, after having attained the honour of being governor of his state, and having enjoyed all the consideration necessarily attached to that office, at length became tired of civilized life, and retired among the Creeks to end his days. He has resided long among them, and knows their character well; yet, in one of his statements made to the Indian board at New York, he says, that the attempts to Christianize the Indians in their present state, he was of opinion, much as he honoured the zeal that had prompted them, were fruitless, _or worse._ The supposed conversions had produced no change of habits. So degraded had become the character of this once independent people, that professions of religious belief had been made, and the ordinances of religion submitted to, “when an Indian wanted a new blanket, or a squaw a new gown.”[19] Thus, according to governor Houston, the only fruits produced by the boasted labours of the missionaries, have been dissimulation and deceit; and demoralization has been the result of teaching _doctrinal_ Christianity to the children of the forest. Yet we must, in candour, acknowledge that Mr. Houston is not singular in that opinion, since we find, so far back as the year 1755, Cadwallader Calden express himself much to the same effect. “The Five Nations,” he says, “are a poor and generally called barbarous people, bred under the darkest ignorance; and yet a bright and noble genius shines through these black clouds. None of the greatest Roman heroes have discovered a greater love of country, or contempt of death, than these people, called barbarous, have shown when liberty came in competition. Indeed I think our Indians have outdone the Romans in this particular. Some of the greatest of those Roman heroes have murdered themselves to avoid shame or torments; but our Indians have refused to die meanly or with little pain, when they thought their country’s honour would be at stake by it; but have given their bodies willingly to the most cruel torments of their enemies, to show, as they said, that ‘the Five Nations’ consisted of men whose courage and resolution could not be shaken. But what, alas! have we Christians done to make them better? We have, indeed, reason to be ashamed that these infidels, by our conversation and neighbourhood, are become worse than they were before they knew us. Instead of virtue, we have only taught them vice, that they were entirely free from before that time.”[20] The Rev. Timothy Flint, who was himself a missionary, in his “Ten Years’ Residence in the Valley of the Mississippi,” observes, page 144,–“I have surely had it in my heart to impress them with the importance of the subject (religion). I have scarcely noticed an instance in which the subject was not received either with indifference, rudeness, or jesting. Of all races of men that I have seen, they seem most incapable of religious impressions. They have, indeed, some notions of an invisible agent, but they seemed generally to think that the Indians had their god as the whites had theirs.” And again, “nothing will eventually be gained to the great cause by colouring and mis-statement,” alluding to the practice of the missionaries; “and however reluctant we may be to receive it, the real state of things will eventually be known to us. We have heard of the imperishable labours of an Elliott and a Brainard, in other days. But in these times it is a melancholy truth, that Protestant exertions to Christianize them have not been marked with apparent success. The Catholics have caused many to hang a crucifix around their necks, which they show as they show their medals and other ornaments, and this is too often all they have to mark them as Christians. We have read the narratives of the Catholics, which detailed the most glowing and animating views of success. I have had accounts, however, from travellers in these regions, that have been over the Stony mountains into the great missionary settlements of St. Peter and St. Paul. These travellers (and some of them were professed Catholics) unite in affirming that the converts will escape from the missions whenever it is in their power, fly into their native deserts, and resume at once their old mode of life.”

That the vast sums expended on missions should have produced so little effect, we may consider lamentable, but it is lamentably true; for in addition to the mass of evidence we have to that effect, from disinterested white men, we have also the speeches and communications of the Indians themselves. The celebrated Seneca chief, Saguyuwhaha (keeper awake), better known in the United States by the name of Red-jacket, in a letter communicated to Governor De Witt Clinton, at a treaty held at Albany, says, “Our great father, the President, has recommended to our young men to be industrious, to plough and to sow. This we have done; and we are thankful for the advice, and for the means he has afforded us of carrying it into effect. We are happier in consequence of it; _but another thing recommended to us, has created great confusion among us, and is making us a quarrelsome and divided people; and that is, the introduction of preachers into our nation_. These black-coats contrive to get the consent of some of the Indians to preach among us; and whenever this is the case, confusion and disorder are sure to follow, and the encroachment of the whites on our lands is the inevitable consequence.

“The governor must not think hard of me for speaking thus of the preachers: I have observed their progress, and whenever I look back to see what has taken place of old, I perceive that whenever they came among the Indians, they were the forerunners of their dispersion; that they always excited enmities and quarrels amongst them; that they introduced the white people on their lands, by whom they were robbed and plundered of their property; and that the Indians were sure to dwindle and decrease, and be driven back, in proportion to the number of preachers that came among them.

“Each nation has its own customs and its own religion. The Indians have theirs, given them by the Great Spirit, under which they were happy. It was not intended that they should embrace the religion of the whites, and be destroyed by the attempt to make them think differently on that subject from their fathers.

“It is true, these preachers have got the consent of some of the chiefs to stay and preach amongst us; but I and my friends know this to be wrong, and that they ought to be removed; besides, we have been threatened by Mr. Hyde–who came among us as a schoolmaster and a teacher of our children, but has now become a black-coat, and refuses to teach them any more–that unless we listen to his preaching and become Christians, we shall be turned off our lands. We wish to know from the governor, if this is to be so? and if he has no right to say so, we think _he_ ought to be turned off our lands, and not allowed to plague us any more. We shall never be at peace while he is among us.

“We are afraid too, that these preachers, by and by, will become poor, _and force us to pay them for living among us, and disturbing us._

“Some of our chiefs have got lazy, and instead of cultivating their lands themselves, employ white people to do so. There are now eleven families living on our reservation at Buffalo; this is wrong, and ought not to be permitted. The great source of all our grievances is, that the whites are among us. Let _them_ be removed, and we will be happy and contented among ourselves. We now cry to the governor for help, and hope that he will attend to our complaints, and speedily give us redress.”[21]

This melancholy hostility to the missionaries is not confined to a particular tribe or nation of Indians, for all those people, in every situation, from the base of the Alleghanies to the foot of the Rocky mountains, declare the same sentiments on this subject; and although policy or courtesy may induce some chiefs to express themselves less strongly than Red-jacket has expressed himself, we have but too many proofs that their feelings are not more moderate. On the fourth of February, 1822, the president of the United States, in council, received a deputation of Indians, from the principal nations west of the Mississippi, who came under the protection of Major O’Fallon, when each chief delivered a speech on the occasion. I shall here insert an extract from that of the “Wandering Pawnee” chief, more as a specimen of Indian wisdom and eloquence than as bearing particularly on the subject. Speaking of the Great Spirit, he said, “We worship him not as you do. We differ from you in appearance, and manners, as well as in our customs; and we differ from you in our religion. We have no large houses, as you have, to worship the Great Spirit in: if we had them to-day, we should want others to-morrow; for we have not like you a fixed habitation–we have no settled home except our villages, where we remain but two months in twelve. We, like animals, rove through the country; whilst you whites reside between us and heaven. But still, my great Father, we love the Great Spirit–we acknowledge his supreme power–our peace, our health, and our happiness depend upon him, and our lives belong to him–he made us, and he can destroy us.

“My great Father,–some of your good chiefs, as they are called (missionaries), have proposed to send some of their good people among us to change our habits, to make us work for them, and live like the white people. I will not tell a lie–I am going to tell the truth. You love your country–you love your people–you love the manner in which they live, and you think your people brave. I am like you, my great Father; I love my country–I love my people–I love the manner in which we live, and think myself and warriors brave.[22] Spare me then, my Father; let me enjoy my country, and pursue the buffalo and the beaver, and the other wild animals of our country, and I will trade their skins with your people. I have grown up and lived thus long without work–I am in hopes you will suffer me to die without it. We have plenty of buffalo, beaver, deer, and other wild animals–we have also an abundance of horses–we have every thing we want–we have plenty of land, _if you will keep your people off it_. My Father has a piece on which he lives (Council bluffs), and we wish him to enjoy it–we have enough without it–but we wish him to live near us, to give us good council–to keep our ears and eyes open, that we may continue to pursue the right road–the road to happiness. He settles all differences between us and the whites, between the red-skins themselves–he makes the whites do justice to the red-skins, and he makes the red-skins do justice to the whites. He saves the effusion of human blood, and restores peace and happiness in the land. You have already sent us a father (Major O’Fallon); it is enough–he knows us, and we know him–we keep our eye constantly upon him, and since we have heard _your_ words, we will listen more attentively to _his_.

“It is too soon, my great Father, to send those good chiefs amongst us. _We are not starving yet_–we wish you to permit us to enjoy the chase until the game of our country is exhausted–until the wild animals become extinct. Let us exhaust our present resources before you make us toil and interrupt our happiness. Let me continue to live as I have done; and after I have passed to the good or evil spirit, from off the wilderness of my present life, the subsistence of my children may become so precarious as to need and embrace the assistance of those good people.

“There was a time when we did not know the whites–our wants were then fewer than they are now. They were always within our control–we had then seen nothing which we could not get. Before our intercourse with the whites (who have caused such a destruction in our game) we could lie down to sleep, and when we awoke we would find the buffalo feeding around our camp–but now we are killing them for their skins, and feeding the wolves with their flesh, to make our children cry over their bones.

“Here, my great Father, is a pipe which I present to you, as I am accustomed to present pipes to all the Red-skins in peace with us. It is filled with such tobacco as we were accustomed to smoke before we knew the white people. It is pleasant, and the spontaneous growth of the most remote parts of our country. I know that the robes, leggings, and moccasins, and bear-claws are of little value to _you_; but we wish you to have them deposited and preserved in some conspicuous part of your lodge, so that when we are gone and the sod turned over our bones, if our children should visit this place, as we do now, they may see and recognize with pleasure the depositories of their fathers; and reflect on the times that are past.”

I shall now take leave of the Indians and their political condition, by observing that the proceedings of the American government, throughout, towards this brave but unfortunate race, have only been exceeded in atrocity by the past and present conduct of the East India government towards the pusillanimous but unoffending Hindoos.

_Note_.–This chapter I wrote during my stay in Kentucky, and the first part of it, in substance, was inserted in the “Kentucky Intelligencer,” at the request of the talented editor and proprietor, John Mullay, Esq.


[15] In November, 1785, during the articles of confederation, a treaty is concluded with the Cherokees, which establishes a boundary, and allots to the Indians a great extent of country, now within the limits of North Carolina and Georgia.

In 1791, the treaty of Holston is concluded; by which a new boundary is agreed upon. This was the first treaty made by the United States under their present constitution; and by the seventh article, a solemn guarantee is given for all the lands not then ceded.

On the 7th of February, 1792, by an additional article to the last treaty, 500 dollars are added to the stipulated annuity.

In June, 1794, another treaty is entered into, in which the provisions of the treaty of 1791 are revived, an addition is made to the annuity, and provision made for marking the boundary line.

In October, 1798, a treaty is concluded which revives former treaties, and curtails the boundary of Indian lands by a cession to the United States, for an additional compensation.

In October, 1804, a treaty is concluded, by which, for a consideration specified, more land is ceded.

In October, 1805, two treaties are made, by which an additional quantity of land is ceded.

On 7th January, 1806, by another treaty, more land is ceded to the United States.

In September, 1807, the boundary line intended in the last treaty, is satisfactorily ascertained.

On 22d March, 1816, a treaty is concluded, by which lands in South Carolina are ceded, for which the United States engage South Carolina shall pay. On the same day another treaty is made, by which the Indians agree to allow the use of the water-courses in their country, and also to permit roads to be made through the same.

On the 14th of September, 1816, a treaty is made, by which an additional quantity of land is ceded to the United States.

On the 8th of July, 1817, a treaty is concluded, by which an exchange of lands is agreed on, and a plan for dividing the Cherokees settled.

On the 27th of February, 1819, another treaty is concluded, in execution of the stipulations contained in that of 1817, in several particulars, and in which an additional tract of country is ceded to the United States.

[16] “The white hunter, on encamping in his journeys, cuts down green trees, and builds a large fire of long logs, sitting at some distance from it. The Indian hunts up a few dry limbs, cracks them into little pieces a foot in length, builds a small fire, and sits close to it. He gets as much warmth as the white hunter without half the labour, and does not burn more than a fiftieth part of the wood. The Indian considers the forest his own, and is careful in using and preserving every thing which it affords. He never kills more than he has occasion for. The white hunter destroys all before him, and cannot resist the opportunity of killing game, although he neither wants the meat nor can carry the skins. I was particularly struck with this wanton practice, which lately occurred on White river. A hunter returning from the woods, heavily laden with the flesh and skins of five bears, unexpectedly arrived in the midst of a drove of buffalos, and wantonly shot down three, having no other object than the sport of killing them. This is one of the causes of the enmity existing between the white and red hunters of Missouri”.–_Schoolcroft’s Tour in Missouri_, page 52.

[17] Does the General include among the arts of civilization, that of systematically robbing the Indians of their farms and hunting grounds? If so, no doubt _these arts of civilization_, must inevitably “destroy the resources of the savage,” and “doom him to weakness and decay.”

[18] The Indians apply the term “Christian honesty,” precisely in the same sense that the Romans applied “_Punica fides_.”

[19] There is an old Indian at present in the Missouri territory, to whom his tribe has given the cognomen of “much-water,” from the circumstance of his having been baptized so frequently.

[20] Heriot says (page 320), “They have evinced a decided attachment to their ancient habits, and have _gained_ less from the means that might have smoothed the asperities of their condition, than they have _lost_ by copying the vices of those, who exhibited to their view the arts of civilization.”

[21] This letter was dictated by Red-jacket, and interpreted by Henry Obeal, in the presence of ten chiefs, whose names are affixed, at Canandaigua, January 18, 1821.

[22] “The attachment which savages entertain for their mode of life supersedes every allurement, however powerful, to change it. Many Frenchmen have lived with them, and have imbibed such an invincible partiality for that independent and erratic condition, that no means could prevail on them to abandon it. On the contrary, no single instance has yet occurred of a savage being able to reconcile himself to a state of civilization. Infants have been taken from among the natives, and educated with much care in France, where they could not possibly have intercourse with their countrymen and relations. Although they had remained several years in that country, and could not form the smallest idea of the wilds of America, the force of blood predominated over that of education: no sooner did they find themselves at liberty than they tore their clothes in pieces, and went to traverse the forests in search of their countrymen, whose mode of life appeared to them far more agreeable than that which they had led among the French.”–_-Heriot_, p. 354.

This passage of Heriot’s is taken nearly verbatim from Charlevoix, v. 2, p. 109.


I left Kentucky, and passed up the river to Wheeling, in Virginia. There is little worthy of observation encountered in a passage up this part of the Ohio, except the peculiar character of the stream, which has been before alluded to. At Marietta, at the mouth of the Muskingum, ship-building is carried on; and vessels have been constructed at Pittsburg, full 2000 miles from the gulf of Mexico. About seventy miles up the Kenhawa river, in Virginia, are situated the celebrated salt springs, the most productive of any in the Union. They are at present in the possession of a chartered company, which limits the manufacture to 800,000 bushels annually, but it is estimated that the fifty-seven wells are capable of yielding 50,000 bushels each, per annum, which would make an aggregate of 2,850,000 bushels. Many of these springs issue out of rocks, and the water is so strongly impregnated with salt, that from 90 to 130 gallons yield a bushel. The whole western country bordering the Ohio and its tributaries, is supplied with salt from these works.

Wheeling, although not large, enjoys a considerable share of commercial intercourse, being an entrepot for eastern merchandize, which is transported from the Atlantic cities across the mountains to this town and Pittsburg, and from thence by water to the different towns along the rivers.

The process of “hauling” merchandize from Baltimore and Philadelphia to the banks of the Ohio, and _vice versa_, is rather tedious, the roads lying across steep and rugged mountains. Large covered waggons, light and strong, drawn by five or six horses, two and two, are employed for this purpose. The waggoner always rides the near shaft horse, and guides the team by means of reins, a whip, and his voice. The time generally consumed in one of these journeys is from twenty to twenty-five days.

All the mountains or hills on the upper part of the Ohio, from Wheeling to Pittsburg, contain immense beds of coal; this added to the mineral productions, particularly that of iron ore, which abound in this section of country, offers advantages for manufacturing, which are of considerable importance, and are fully appreciated. Pittsburg is called the Birmingham of America. Some of those coal beds are well circumstanced, the coal being found immediately under the super-stratum, and the galleries frequently running out on the high road. Notwithstanding the local advantages, and the protection and encouragement at present afforded by the tariff, England need never fear any extensive competition with her manufactures in foreign markets from America, as the high spirit of the people of that country will always prevent them from pursuing, extensively, the sordid occupations of the loom or the workshop.

The upper parts of Virginia and Pennsylvania are in a high state of improvement; the land is hilly, and the face of the country picturesque. The farms are well cultivated, and there is a large portion of pasture land in this and the adjoining states. I encountered several large droves of horses and black cattle on their way to the neighbourhood of Philadelphia and to the state of New York. The black cattle are purchased principally in Ohio, whence they are brought into the Atlantic states, to be fattened and consumed. The farmers and their families in Pennsylvania, have an appearance of comfort and respectability a good deal resembling that of the substantial English yeoman; yet farming here, as in all parts of the country, is a laborious occupation.

I crossed the Monongahela at Williamsport, and the Youghaghany at Robstown, and so on through Mountpleasant to the first ridge of mountains, called “the chestnut ridge.” I determined on crossing the mountains on foot; and after having made arrangements to that effect, I commenced sauntering along the road. Near Mountpleasant, I stopped to dine at the house of a Dutchman by descent. After dinner, the party adjourned, as is customary, to the bar-room, when divers political and polemical topics were canvassed with the usual national warmth. An account of his late Majesty’s death was inserted in a Philadelphia paper, and happened to be noticed by one of the politicians present, when the landlord asked me how we elected our king in England. I replied that he was not elected, but that he became king by birthright, &c. A Kentuckian observed, placing his leg on the back of the next chair, “That’s a kind of unnatural.” An Indianian said, “I don’t believe in that system myself.” A third–“Do you mean to tell me, that because the last king was a smart man and knew his duty, that his son, or his brother, should be a smart man, and fit for the situation?” I explained that we had a premier, ministers, &c.;–when the last gentleman replied, “Then you pay half-a-dozen men to do one man’s business. Yes–yes–that may do for Englishmen very well; but, I guess, it would not go down here–no, no, Americans are a little more enlightened than to stand that kind of wiggery.” During this conversation, a person had stepped into the room, and had taken his seat in silence. I was about to reply to the last observations of my antagonist, when this gentleman opened out, with, “yes! that may do for Englishmen very well”–he was an Englishman, I knew at once by his accent, and I verily believe the identical radical who set the village of Bracebridge by the ears, and pitched the villagers to the devil, on seeing them grin through a horse-collar, when they should have been calculating the interest of the national debt, or conning over the list of sinecure placemen. He held in his hand, instead of “Cobbett’s Register,” the “Greenville Republican.”–He had substituted for his short-sleeved coat, “a round-about.”–He seemed to have put on flesh, and looked somewhat more contented. “Yes, yes,” he says, “that may do for Englishmen very well, but it won’t do here. Here we make our own laws, and we keep them too. It may do for Englishmen very well, to have _the liberty_ of paying taxes for the support of the nobility. To have _the liberty_ of being incarcerated in a gaol, for shooting the wild animals of the country. To have _the liberty_ of being seized by a press-gang, torn away from their wives and families, and flogged at the discretion of my lord Tom, Dick, or Harry’s bastard.” At this, the Kentuckian gnashed his teeth, and instinctively grasped his hunting-knife;–an old Indian doctor, who was squatting in one corner of the room, said, slowly and emphatically, as his eyes glared, his nostrils dilated, and his lip curled with contempt–“The Englishman is a dog”–while a Georgian slave, who stood behind his master’s chair, grinned and chuckled with delight, as he said–“_poor_ Englishman, him meaner man den black nigger.”–“To have,” continued the Englishman, “_the liberty_ of being transported for seven years for being caught learning the use of the sword or the musket. To have the tenth lamb, and the tenth sheaf seized, or the blanket torn from off his bed, to pay a bloated, a plethoric bishop or parson,–to be kicked and cuffed about by a parcel of ‘Bourbon _gendarmerie_’–Liberty!–why hell sweat”–here I–slipped out at the side door into the water-melon patch. As I receded, I heard the whole party burst out into an obstreperous fit of laughter.–A few broken sentences, from the Kentuckian and the radical, reached my ear, such as “backed out”–“damned aristocratic.” I returned in about half an hour to pay my bill, when I could observe one or two of those doughty politicians who remained, leering at me most significantly. However, I–“smiled, and said nothing.”

“The Chestnut ridge” is a chain of rocky, barren mountains, covered with wood, and the ascent is steep and difficult. It is named from the quantity of chestnut trees that compose the bulk of its timber. Being a little fatigued in ascending, I sat down in a wood of scrub oak. When I had been some time seated on a large stone, my ear caught the gliding of a snake. Turning quickly, I perceived, at about a yard’s distance, a reptile of that beautiful species the rattle-snake. He ceased moving: I jumped up, and struck at his head with a stick, but missed the blow. He instantly coiled and rattled. I now retreated beyond the range of his spring. Perceiving that I had no intention of giving him fair play by coming within his reach, he suddenly uncoiled and glid across a log, thinking to make good his retreat; but being determined on having–not his scalp, for the head of a rattle-snake is rather a dangerous toy–but his rattle, I pursued him across the log. He now coiled again, and rattled most furiously, thus indicating his extreme wrath at being attacked: the bite of this reptile is most venomous when he is most enraged. I took up a flat stone, about six inches square, and lobbed it on his coil. He suddenly darted out towards me; but, as I had anticipated, he was encumbered with the stone. I now advanced, and struck him on the head with my stick. I repeated the blow until he seemed to be deprived of sensation, when I drew my hunting knife and decapitated him. For a full hour afterwards the body retained all the vigour and sensitiveness which it possessed previous to decapitation, and on touching any part of it, would twist round in the same manner as when the animal was perfect. Sensation gradually disappeared, departing first from the extremities–more towards the wounded extremity than towards the other, but gradually from both, until it was entirely gone. The length of this reptile was about four feet, and the skin was extremely beautiful. Nothing could exceed the beauty of his eye. A clear black lustre characterizes the eye of this animal, and is said to produce so powerful an effect on birds and smaller animals, as to deprive them of the power of escaping. This snake had eight rattles, so that he must have been at least eleven years old. I understood afterwards that there was a rattle-snakes’ den in the neighbourhood. They appear to live in society, and the large quantities that are frequently found congregated together are astonishing. The Jacksonville (Illinois) Gazette of the 22d April, 1830, says, “Last week, a den of rattle-snakes was discovered near Apple Creek, by a person while engaged in digging for rock in that part of our country. He made known the circumstance to the neighbours, who visited the place, where they killed 193 rattle-snakes, the largest of which (as our informant, who was on the spot, told us) measured nearly four feet in length. Besides these, there were sixteen black snakes destroyed, together with one copper-head. Counting the young ones, there were upwards of 1000 killed.” There are two species of rattle-snake, which are in constant hostility with each other. The common black snake, whose bite is perfectly innoxious, and the copper-head, have also a deadly enmity towards the rattle-snake, which, when they meet it, they never fail to attack.

The next ridge of mountains is called the “laurel hills,” which are covered with an immense growth of different species of laurel. Between these and the Alleghany ridge are situated “the glades”–beautiful fertile plains in a high state of cultivation. This district is most healthy, and fevers and agues are unknown to the inhabitants. Here the “Delawares of the hills” once roamed the sole lords of this fine country; and perhaps from the very eminence from whence I contemplated the beauty of the scene, some warrior, returning from the “war path” or the chase, may have gazed with pleasure on the hills of his fathers, the possessions of a long line of Sylvan heros, and in the pride of manhood said–‘The Delawares are men–they are strong in battle, and cunning on the trail of their foes–at the ‘council fire’ there is wisdom in their words. Who counts more scalps than the Lenni Lenape warrior?–he can never be conquered–the stranger shall never dwell in his glades.’ Where now is the “Delaware of the hills?”–gone!–his very name is unknown in his own land, and not a vestige remains to tell that _there_ once dwelt a great and powerful tribe. When the white man falls, his high towers and lofty battlements are laid crumbling with the dust, yet these mighty ruins remain for ages, monuments of his former greatness: but the Indian passes away, silent as the noiseless tread of the moccasin–the next snow comes, and his “trail” is blotted out for ever.

I toiled across the Alleghanies, which are completely covered with timber, and passed on to a place within about thirty miles of Chambersburg, on a branch of the Potomac. Here, coming in upon _civilization_, I took the stage to Baltimore. In my pedestrian excursion the road lay for several miles along the banks of the Juniata, which is a very fine river. The scenery is romantic, and is much beautified by a large growth of magnificent pines. The Alleghany ridge is composed chiefly of sand-stone, clay-slate, and lime-stone-slate, sand-stone sometimes in large blocks.

I encountered several parties of French, Irish, Swiss, Bavarians, Dutch, &c. going westward, with swarms of children, and considerable quantities of household lumber:–symptoms of seeking _El dorado_.

In the neighbourhood of Baltimore there are many handsome residences, and the farms are all well cleared, and in many cases walled in. The number of comparatively miserable-looking cabins which are dispersed along the road near this town, and the long lists of crimes and misdemeanours with which the Journals of Baltimore and Philadelphia are filled, sufficiently indicate that these cities have arrived to an advanced state of civilization. For, wherever there are very rich people, there must be very poor people; and wherever there are very poor people, there must necessarily exist a proportionate quantity of crime. Men are poor, only because they are ignorant; for if they possessed a knowledge of their own powers and capabilities, they would then know, that however wealth may be distributed, all real wealth is created by labour, and by labour alone.

Baltimore is seated on the north side of the Patapsco river, within a few miles of the Chesapeak bay. It received its name in compliment to the Irish family of the Calverts. The harbour, at Fell Point, has about eighteen feet water, and is defended by a strong fort, called Mc Henry’s fort, on Observation Hill. Vessels of large tonnage cannot enter the basin. In 1791 it contained 13,503 inhabitants; in 1810, 46,487; and at present it contains 80,519. There are many fine buildings and monuments in this city; and the streets in which business is not extensively transacted, are planted with Lombardy poplar, locust, and pride-of-china trees,–the last mentioned especially afford a fine shade.

A considerable schooner trade is carried on by the merchants of Baltimore with South America. The schooners of this port are celebrated for their beauty, and are much superior to those of any other port on the Continent. They are sharp built, somewhat resembling the small Greek craft one sees in the Mediterranean. A rail-road is being constructed from this place to the Ohio river, a distance of upwards of three hundred miles, and about fourteen miles of the road is already completed, as is also a viaduct. If the enterprising inhabitants of Baltimore be able to finish this undertaking, it must necessarily throw a very large amount of wealth into their hands, to the prejudice of Philadelphia and New York. But the expense will be enormous.

I left Baltimore for Philadelphia in one of those splendid and spacious steam-boats peculiar to this country. We paddled up the Chesapeak bay until we came to Elk river–the scenery at both sides is charming. A little distance up this river commences the “Chesapeak and Delaware canal,” which passes through the old state of Delaware, and unites the waters of the two bays. Here we were handed into a barge, or what we in common parlance would term a large canal boat; but the Americans are the fondest people in the universe of big names, and ransack the Dictionary for the most pompous appellations with which to designate their works or productions. The universal fondness for European titles that obtains here, is also remarkable. The president, is “his excellency,”–“congressmen,” are “honorables,”–and every petty merchant, or “dry-goods store-keeper,” is, at least, an esquire. Their newspapers contain many specimens of this love of monarchical distinctions–such as, “wants a situation, as store-keeper (shopman), a gentleman, &c.” “Two gentlemen were convicted and sentenced to six months’ imprisonment for horse-stealing, &c.” These two items I read myself in the papers of the western country, and the latter was commented on by a Philadelphia journal. You may frequently see “Miss Amanda,” without shoes or stockings–certainly for convenience or economy, not from necessity, and generally in Dutch houses–and “that _ere_ young lady” scouring the pails! An accident lately occurred in one of the factories in New England, and the local paper stated, that “one young lady was seriously injured,”–this young lady was a spinner. Observe, I by no means object to the indiscriminate use of the terms _gentleman_ and _lady_, but merely state the fact. On the contrary, so far am I from finding fault with the practice, that I think it quite fair; when any portion of republicans make use of terms which properly belong to a monarchy, that all classes should do the same, it being unquestionably their right. It does not follow, because a man may be introduced as an _American gentleman_, that he may not be simply a mechanic.

The Chesapeak and Delaware canal is about fourteen miles in length; and from the nature of the soil through which it is cut, there was some difficulty attending the permanent security of the work. On reaching the Delaware, we were again handed into a steamer, and so conducted to Philadelphia. The merchant shipping, and the numerous pleasure and steam-boats, and craft of every variety, which are constantly moving on the broad bosom of the Delaware, present a gay and animated scene.

Philadelphia is a regular well-built city, and one of the handsomest in the states. It lies in latitude 39 deg. 56′ north, and longitude, west of London, 75 deg. 8′; distant from the sea, 120 miles. The city stands on an elevated piece of ground between the Schuylkill and Delaware rivers, about a mile broad from bank to bank, and six miles from their junction. The Delaware is about a mile wide at Philadelphia, and ships of the largest tonnage can approach the wharf. The city contains many fine buildings of Schuylkill marble. The streets are well paved, and have broad _trottoirs_ of hard red brick. The police regulations are excellent, and cleanliness is much attended to, the kennels being washed daily during the summer months, with water from the reservoirs. The markets, or shambles, extend half-a-mile in length, from the wharf up Market-street, in six divisions. In addition to the shambles, farmers’ waggons, loaded with every kind of country produce for sale, line the street.

There are five banking establishments in the city: the Bank of North America, the United States Bank, the Bank of Pennsylvania, the Bank of Philadelphia, and the Farmers’ Bank.

The principal institutions are, the Franklin library, which contains upwards of 20,000 volumes. Strangers are admitted gratis, and are permitted to peruse any of the books. The Americans should adopt this practice in all their national exhibitions, and rather copy the liberality of the French than the sordid churlishness of the English, who compel foreigners to pay even for seeing the property of the nation. The other institutions are, the University of Pennsylvania, a College, Medical Theatre, College of Physicians, Philosophical Hall, Agricultural and Linnean Societies, Academy of Fine Arts, and the Cincinnati Society, which originated in an attempt to establish a sort of aristocracy. The members were at its formation the surviving officers of the revolution; they wear an eagle, suspended by a ribbon, which, at their death, they have appointed to be taken by their eldest sons. There are besides, the Academies of the Philadelphian Friends, and the German Lutherans; Sunday and Lancasterian schools; and, of course, divers Bible and Tract Societies, which are patronized by all the antiquated dames in the city, and superintended by the Methodist and Presbyterian parsons. The Methodist parsons of this country have the character of being men of gallantry; and indeed, from the many instances I have heard of their propensity in this way, from young Americans, I should be a very sceptic to doubt the fact.

There are also St. George’s, St. Patrick’s, St. David’s, and St. Andrew’s Societies for the relief and colonization of British emigrants; a French and a German Emigrant Society, and several hospitals. There are two theatres and an amphitheatre. Peal’s Museum contains a large collection, which is scientifically arranged; among other fossils is the perfect skeleton of a mammoth, found in a bed of marle in the state of New York. The length of this animal, from the bend of the tusks to the rump, was about twenty-seven feet, and the height and bulk proportionate.

The navy-yard contains large quantities of timber, spars, and rigging, prepared for immediate use, as also warlike stores of every description. There is here, a ship of 140 guns, of large calibre, and a frigate. Both are housed completely, and in a condition to be launched in a few months, if necessary. They are constructed of the very best materials, and in the most durable and solid manner. There are now being constructed, seriatim, twenty-five ships of the line–one for every state in the Union. The government occasionally sells the smaller vessels of war to merchants, in order to increase the shipping, and to secure that those armed vessels which are afloat, may be in the finest possible condition. A corvette, completely equipped, was lately sold to his majesty the autocrat of the Russias; but was dismasted in a day or two after her departure from Charleston. She was taken in tow by the vessel of a New York merchant, and carried into the port of that city. The merchant refused any compensation from the Russian minister, although his vessel was, when she fell in with the wreck, proceeding to the Austral regions, and her putting about was greatly disadvantageous. The minister returned thanks publicly, on the part of his master, and expressed his majesty’s sense of the invariable consideration and friendship with which his majesty’s subjects are treated by the citizens of America. There appears to be a universal wish among the Americans to cultivate an alliance, offensive and defensive, with his majesty of Russia. The cry is, “all the Russians want is a fleet, and we’ll lend them that.” In fact, a deadly animosity pervades America towards Great Britain; and although it is not publicly confessed, for the Americans are too able politicians to do that, yet it is no less certain, that “_Delenda est Carthago_,” is their motto. Let England look to it. Her power is great; but, if the fleets of America, France, and Russia, were to combine, and land on the shores of England hordes of Russians, and battalions of disciplined Frenchmen–if this were to be done, with the Irish people, instead of allies as they should be, her deadly enemies, her power is annihilated at a blow! For let it be remembered, that there is no rallying principle in the temperament of the mass of the English people; and that formerly one single victory,–the victory of Hastings, completely subjugated them. Hume, who was decidedly an impartial historian, is compelled to say of that conquest, “It would be difficult to find in all history a revolution more destructive, or attended with a more complete subjection of the ancient inhabitants. Contumely seems even to have been wantonly added to oppression; and the natives were universally reduced to such a state of meanness and poverty, that the English name became a term of reproach; and several generations elapsed before one family of Saxon pedigree was raised to any considerable honours, or could so much as obtain the rank of baron of the realm.”–Yet the English people owe much to the ancestors of the aristocracy, who introduced among them the arts and refinements of civilization, and by their wisdom and disciplined valour have raised the country to that pitch of greatness, so justly termed “the envy of surrounding nations.” I do not contend, that because a nation may have acquired the name of great, that therefore _the people_ are more happy; but am rather inclined to think the contrary, for conquests are generally made and wealth is accumulated for the benefit of the few, and at the expense of the many.

A law has been lately passed by the legislature of Pennsylvania, taxing wholesale and retail dealers in merchandize, excepting those importers of foreign goods who vend the articles in the form in which they are imported. This act classes the citizens according to their annual amount of sales, and taxes them in the same proportion. Those who effect sales to the amount of fifty thousand dollars, constitute the first class; of forty thousand dollars, the second class; of thirty thousand dollars, the third class; of twenty thousand dollars, the fourth class; of fifteen thousand dollars, the fifth class; of ten thousand dollars, the sixth class; of five thousand dollars, the seventh class; and all persons effecting sales not exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars, constitute the eighth class. The first class shall pay for license, annually, fifty dollars; the second class, forty dollars; the third class, thirty dollars; the fourth class, twenty-five dollars; the fifth class, twenty dollars; the sixth class, fifteen dollars; the seventh class, twelve dollars and fifty cents, and the eighth class ten dollars.

Direct taxation has been found in all cases to be obnoxious, and this particular mode, I apprehend, is calculated to produce very pernicious effects. The laws of a republic should all tend to establish and support, as far as is practicable, the principle of equality, and any act that has a contrary tendency must be injurious to the community. Now this act draws a direct line of demarcation between citizens, in proportion to the extent of their dealings; and as in this country a man’s importance is entirely estimated by his supposed wealth, the citizens of Pennsylvania can henceforth only claim a share of respectability, proportionate to the _class_ to which they belong. The west country ladies have shewn a great aptitude for forming “circles of society,” and the promulgation of this law affords them a most powerful aid in establishing a _store-keeping aristocracy_.

The large cities in America are by no means so lightly taxed as might be supposed from the cheapness of the government; the public works, public buildings, and police establishments, requiring adequate funds for their maintenance and support; however, the inhabitants have the consolation of knowing that this must gradually decrease, and that their money is laid out for their own advantage, and not for the purpose of pensioning off the mistresses and physicians of viceroys, as in Ireland.[23] Another thing is to be observed, that in addition to the _national_ debt, each state has a _private_ debt, which in many cases is tolerably large. These debts have been created by expenditures on roads, canals, and public buildings. The mode of taxation latterly adopted by the legislature is not popular, and many of the public prints have remonstrated against the system. “The Philadelphia Gazette,” of the 24th Sept. 1830, makes the following remarks–“The subject of unequal and oppressive taxation deserves more attention than it has hitherto received from our citizens. The misery of England is occasioned less by the amount of revenue that is raised there, than by the manner in which it is raised. In Pennsylvania we are going on rapidly, making our state a second England in regard of debt and taxation. Our public debt is already 13,000,000 dollars; and before our canals and rail-roads shall be completed, it will probably amount to 18 or 20 millions. The law imposing taxes of 10, 20, 30, 40 and 50 dollars on retailers, is not the only just subject of complaint. The _collateral inheritance_ tax is equally unjust. The tavern-keepers are besides to be taxed from 20 to 50 dollars each. Nor does the matter end here. At the next session of the legislature, it will, in all probability, be found necessary to lay on additional taxes: and when the principle of unjust taxation is once admitted in legislation, it is difficult to say how far it will be carried.”

Whilst staying at Philadelphia an account of the French revolution arrived, and the merchants, there and at New York, were in high spirits, thinking that war was inevitable. A war in Europe is always hailed with delight in America, as it opens a field for commercial enterprise, and gives employment to the shipping, of which at present they are much in need.

During the long and ruinous war in Europe, the mercantile and shipping interests of the United States advanced with an unexampled degree of rapidity. The Americans were then the carriers of nearly all Europe, and scarcely any merchandize entered the ports of the belligerent powers, but in American bottoms. This unnatural state of prosperity could not last: peace was established, and from that era the decline of commerce in the United States may be dated. The merchants seem not to have calculated on this event’s so soon taking place, or to have overrated the increase of prosperity and population in their own country, as up to that period, and for some years afterwards, there does appear to have been no relaxation of ship-building, and little diminution of mercantile speculations. At present the ship-owners are realizing little beyond the expenses of their vessels, and in many cases the bottoms are actually in debt. The frequent failures in the Atlantic cities, of late, are mainly to be attributed to unsuccessful ship speculations; and I am myself aware of more than one instance, where the freight was so extremely low, as to do little more than cover the expenditure of the voyage. On my return to Europe, while staying at Marseilles, twelve American vessels arrived in that port within the space of two months; and before my departure, nine of these returned to the United States with ballast (stones), and I believe only two with full cargos.

In a national point of view, the difficulty of obtaining employment for the shipping of America may not have been so injurious as at first view it appears to be; on the contrary, I am of opinion that it has been advantageous. Whilst a profitable trade could with facility be carried on with and in Europe, the merchants seldom thought of extending their enterprises to any other parts of the world; but since the decline of that trade, communications have been opened with the East Indies, Africa, all the ports of the Mediterranean, and voyages to the Pacific, and to the Austral regions, are now of common occurrence. The museums in the Atlantic cities bear ample testimony to the enterprising character of the American merchants, which by their means are filled with all the curious and interesting productions of the East. This has encouraged a taste for scientific studies, and for travelling; which must ultimately tend to raise the nation to a degree of respectability little inferior to the oldest European state.


[23] An Irish viceroy lately paid his physician by conferring on him a baronetcy, and a pension of two hundred pounds a year, of the public money.


Having sojourned for more than three weeks at Philadelphia, I departed for New York. The impressions made on my mind during that time were highly favourable to the Philadelphians and their city. It is the handsomest city in the Union; and the inhabitants, in sociability and politeness, have much the advantage of any other body of people with whom I came in contact.

The steamer takes you up the Delaware river to Bordentown, in New Jersey, twenty-four miles from Philadelphia. The country at either side is in a high state of cultivation. It is interspersed with handsome country seats, and on the whole presents a most charming prospect. There is scarcely a single point passed up the windings of the Delaware, but presents a new and pleasing variety of landscape–luxuriant foliage–gently swelling hills, and fertile lawns; which last having been lately mown, were covered with a rich green sward most pleasing to the eye. The banks of the river at Bordentown are high, and the town, as seen from the water, has a pretty effect. Here a stage took us across New Jersey to Amboy. This is not a large town, nor can it ever be of much importance, being situated too near the cities of New York and Philadelphia. At Amboy we again took the steam-boat up the bay, and after a delightful sail of thirty miles, through scenery the most beautiful and magnificent, we arrived at New York.

When I was at New York about fifteen months before, I was informed that the working classes were being organized into regular bodies, similar to the “union of trades” in England, for the purpose of retaining all political power in their own hands. This organization has taken place at the suggestion of Frances Wright, of whom I shall again have occasion to speak presently, and has succeeded to an astonishing extent. There are three or four different bodies of the “workies,” as they call themselves familiarly, which vary somewhat from each other in their principles, and go different lengths in their attacks on the present institutions of society. There are those of them called “agrarians,” who contend that there should be a law passed to prohibit individuals holding beyond a certain quantity of ground; and that at given intervals of time there should be an equal division of property throughout the land. This is the most ultra, and least numerous class; the absurdity of whose doctrines must ultimately destroy them as a body. Various handbills and placards may be seen posted about the city, calling meetings of these unions. Some of those handbills are of a most extraordinary character indeed. I shall here insert a copy of one, which I took off a wall, and have now in my possession. It may serve to illustrate the character of those clubs.


The Mechanics and other working men of the city of New York, and of _these_ such and such only as live by their own useful industry, who wish to retain all political power in their own hands;


A just compensation for labour, Banks and Bankers,

Abolishing imprisonment for debt, Auctions and Auctioneers,

An efficient lien law, Monopolies and

A general system of education; Monopolists of all descriptions, including food, clothing
and instruction, equal for all, Brokers, at the public expense, _without
separation of children from_ Lawyers, and _parents,_
Rich men for office, and to all Exemption from sale by execution, those, either rich or poor, of mechanics’ tools and who favour them, implements sufficiently
extensive to enable them to Exemption of Property from carry on business: Taxation:

Are invited to assemble at the Wooster-street Military Hall, on Thursday evening next, 16th Sept., at eight o’clock, to select by Ballot, from among the persons proposed on the 6th Instant, Candidates for Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, Senator, and a New Committee of Fifty, and to propose Candidates for Register, for Members of Congress, and for Assembly.

By order of the Committee of Fifty.

JOHN R. SOPER, _Chairman_. JOHN TUTHILL, _Secretary_.

So far for the “Workies;” and now for Miss Wright. If I understand this lady’s principles correctly, they are strictly Epicurean. She contends, that mankind have nothing whatever to do with any but this tangible world;–that the sole and only legitimate pursuit of man, is terrestrial happiness;–that looking forward to an ideal state of existence, diverts his attention from the pleasures of this life–destroys all real sympathy towards his fellow-creatures, and renders him callous to their sufferings. However different the _theories_ of other systems may be, she contends that the _practice_ of the world, in all ages and generations, shews that this is the _effect_ of their inculcation. These are alarming doctrines; and when this lady made her _debut_ in public, the journals contended that their absurdity was too gross to be of any injury to society, and that in a few months, if she continued lecturing, it would be to empty benches.

The editor of “The New York Courier and Enquirer” and she have been in constant enmity, and have never failed denouncing each other when opportunity offered. Miss Wright sailed from New York for France, where she still remains, in the month of July, 1830; and previous to her departure delivered an address, on which “the New York Enquirer” makes the following observations:–

“The parting address of Miss Wright at the Bowery Theatre, on Wednesday evening, was a singular _melange_ of politics and impiety–eloquence and irreligion–bold invective, and electioneering slang. The theatre was very much crowded, probably three thousand persons being present; and what was the most surprising circumstance of the whole, is the fact, that about _one half of the audience were females–respectable females_.

“When Fanny first made her appearance in this city as a lecturer on the ‘new order of things,’ she was very little visited by respectable females. At her first lecture in the Park Theatre, about half a dozen appeared; but these soon left the house. From that period till the present, we had not heard her speak in public; but her doctrines, and opinions, and philosophy, appear to have made much greater progress in the city than we ever dreamt of. Her fervid eloquence–her fine action–her _soprano-toned_ voice–her bold and daring attacks upon all the present systems of society–and particularly upon priests, politicians, bankers, and aristocrats as she calls them, have raised a party around her of considerable magnitude, and of much fervour and enthusiasm.”

* * * * *

“The present state of things in this city is, to say the least of it, very singular. A bold and eloquent woman lays siege to the very foundations of society–inflames and excites the public mind–declaims with vehemence against every thing religious and orderly, and directs the whole of her movements to accomplish the election of a ticket next fall, under the title of the ‘working-man’s ticket.'[24] She avows that her object is a thorough and radical reform and change in every relation of life–even the dearest and most sacred. Father, mother, husband, wife, son, and daughter, in all their delicate and endearing relationships, are to be swept away equally with clergymen, churches, banks, parties, and benevolent societies. Hundreds and hundreds of respectable families, by frequenting her lectures, give countenance and currency to these startling principles and doctrines. Nearly the whole newspaper press of the city maintain a death-like silence, while the great Red Harlot of Infidelity is madly and triumphantly stalking over the city, under the mantle of ‘working-men,’ and making _rapid progress_ in her work of ruin. If a solitary newspaper raise a word in favour of public virtue and private morals, in defence of the rights, liberties, and property of the community, it is denounced with open bitterness by some, and secretly stabbed at by them who wish to pass for good citizens. Miss Wright says she leaves the city soon. This is a mere _ruse_ to call her followers around her. The effect of her lectures is already boasted of by her followers. ‘Two years ago,’ say they,–‘_twenty persons_ could scarcely be found in New York who would openly avow infidelity–now we have _twenty thousand_.–Is not that something?’

“We say it is something–something that will make the whole city think.”

On the day of my departure for Europe, is was announced to the merchants of New York, that the West India ports were opened to American vessels.

This is a heavy blow to the interests of the British colonies; and it does not appear that even Great Britain _herself_ has received any equivalent for inflicting so serious an injury on a portion of the empire by no means unimportant. The Canadians and Nova Scotians found a market for their surplus produce in the West Indies, for which they took in return the productions of these islands–thus a reciprocal advantage was derived to the sister colonies. But now, from the proximity of the West Indies to the Atlantic cities of the United States, American produce will be poured into these markets, for which, in return, little else than specie will be brought back to the ports of the Republic.

It may be said, that an equivalent has been obtained by the removal of restrictions hitherto laid on British shipping. This I deny is any thing like an equivalent, as the trade with America is carried on almost exclusively in American bottoms. I particularly noted at New Orleans, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York, the paucity of British vessels in those ports; and ascertained that it was the practice among American merchants, who it must be observed are nearly all extensive ship-owners, to withhold cargos, even at some inconvenience, from foreign vessels, and await the arrival of those of their own country. I do not positively assert that the ships of _any other_ nation are preferred to those of England; but, as far as my personal observations on that point have gone, I am strongly inclined to think that such is the fact.

The mercantile and shipping interests of Great Britain must continue to decline, if the government suffers itself continually to be cajoled into measures of this nature, and effects treaties the advantages of which appear to be all on one side, and in lieu of its concessions receives no just equivalent; unless a little empty praise for “liberal policy” and “generosity,” can be so termed. I am well aware that it may have been of some small advantage to the West Indies to be enabled to obtain their supplies from the United States; but with reference to the policy of the measure, I speak only of the empire at large. Nearly all the Canadians with whom I conversed, freely acknowledged that they have not shaken off the yoke of England, only because they enjoyed some advantages by their connexion with her: but as these are diminished, the ties become loosened, and at length will be found too weak to hold them any longer. Disputes have already arisen between the people and the government relative to church lands, which appropriations they contend are unjust and dishonest.

No doubt the question of tariff duties on the raw material imported into England, is one of great delicacy as connected with the manufacturing interests of the country; yet it does appear to me, that a small duty might without injury be imposed on American cottons _imported in American bottoms_. This would afford considerable encouragement to the shipping of Great Britain and her colonies, and could by no means be injurious to the manufacturing interests. The cottons of the Levant have been latterly increasing in quantity, and a measure of this nature would be likely to promote their further and rapid increase; which is desirable, as it would leave us less dependent on America, than we now are, for the raw material. The shipping of America is not held by the cotton-growing states; and although the nationality of the southerns is no doubt great, yet their love of self-interest is much greater, and would always preponderate in their choice of vessels. It would be even better, if found necessary, to make some arrangement in the shape of draw-back, than that a nation which has imposed a duty on our manufactured goods, almost amounting to a prohibition, should reap so much advantage from our system of “liberal and generous” policy. I shall conclude these _rambling_ sketches by observing, that there are two things eminently remarkable in America: the one is, that every American from the highest to the lowest, thinks the Republican form of government _the best;_ and the other, that the seditious and rebellious of all countries become there the most peaceable and contented citizens.

We sailed from New York on the 1st of October, 1830. The monotony of a sea voyage, with unscientific people, is tiresome beyond description. The journal of a single day is the history of a month. You rise in the morning, and having performed the necessary ablutions, mount on deck,–“Well Captain, how does she head?”–“South-east by east”–(our course is east by south).–“Bad, bad, Captain–two points off.” You then promenade the quarter-deck, until the black steward arrests your progress–grins in your face, and announces breakfast. Down you go, and fall foul of ham, beef, _pommes de terre frites_, jonny-cakes, and _cafe sans lait;_ and generally, in despite of bad cooking and occasional lee-lurches, contrive to eat an enormous meal. Breakfast being despatched, you again go on deck–promenade–gaze on the clouds–then read a little, if perchance you have books with you–lean over the gunwale, watching the waves and the motion of the vessel; but the eternal water, clouds, and sky–sky, clouds, and water, produce a listlessness that nothing can overcome. In the Atlantic, a ship in sight is an object which arouses the attention of all on board–to speak one is an aera, and furnishes to the captain and mates a subject for the day’s conversation. Thus situated, an occasional spell of squally weather is by no means uninteresting:–the lowering aspect of the sky–the foaming surges, which come rolling on, threatening to overwhelm the tall ship, and bury her in the fathomless abyss of the ocean–the laugh of the gallant tars, when a sea sweeps the deck and drenches them to the skin–all these incidents, united, rather amuse the voyager, and tend to dispel the inanity with which he is afflicted. During these periods, I have been for hours watching the motions of the “stormy petrel” (_procellaria pelagica_), called by sailors, “mother Carey’s chickens.” These birds are seldom seen in calm weather, but appear to follow the gale, and when it blows most heavily they are seen in greatest numbers. The colour is brown and white; the size about that of the swallow, whose motions oh the wing they resemble. They skim over the surface of the roughest sea, gliding up and down the undulations with astonishing swiftness. When they observe their prey, they descend flutteringly, and place the feet and the tips of the wings on the surface of the water. In this position I have seen many of them rest for five or six seconds, until they had completed the capture. The petrel is to be seen in all parts of the Atlantic, no matter how distant from land; and the oldest seaman with whom I have conversed on the subject, never saw one of them rest. Humboldt says, that in the Northern Deserta, the petrels hide in rabbit burrows.

A few days’ sail brought us into the “Gulf stream,” the influence of which is felt as high as the 43 deg. north latitude. We saw a considerable quantity of _fucus natans_, or gulf weed, but it generally was so far from the vessel, that I could not contrive to procure a sprig. Mr. Luccock, in his Notes on Brazil, says, that “if a nodule of this weed, taken fresh from the water at night, is hung up in a small cabin, it emits phosphorescent light enough to render objects visible.” He describes the leaves of this plant as springing from the joints of the branches, oblong, indented at the edges, about an inch and a half long, and a quarter of an inch broad. Humboldt’s description is somewhat different: he calls it the “vine-leaved fucus;” says, “the leaves are circular, of a _tender_ green, and indented at the edges, stem brown, and three inches long.”–What I saw of this weed rather agrees with that described by Humboldt–the leaves were shaped like the vine leaf, and of a rusty-green colour. That portion of the Atlantic between the 22d and 34th parallels of latitude, and 26th and 58th meridians of longitude, is generally covered with fuci, and is termed by the Portuguese, _mar do sargasso_, or grassy sea. It was supposed by many, from the large quantities of this weed seen in the Gulf stream, that it grew on the Florida rocks, and by the influence and extension of the current, was detached and carried into this part of the Atlantic. However, this position is not tenable, as a single branch of fucus has never been found on the Florida reef. Humboldt, and other scientific men, are of opinion that this weed vegetates at the bottom of the ocean–that being detached from its root, it rises to the surface; and that such portion of it as is found in the stream, is drawn thither by the sweeping of the current along the edge of the weedy sea. Moreover, the fuci that are found in the northern extremity of the Florida stream are generally decayed, while those which are seen in the southern extremity appear quite fresh–this difference would not exist if they emanated from the Gulf.

We stood to the north of the Azores, with rather unfavourable winds, and at length came between the coast of Africa and Cape St. Vincent. Here we had a dead calm for four entire days. The sky was perfectly cloudless, and the surface of the ocean was like oil. Not being able to do better, we got out the boat and went turtle fishing, or rather catching, in company with a very fine shark, which thought proper to attend us during our excursion. In such weather the turtles come to the surface of the water to sleep and enjoy the solar heat, and if you can approach without waking them, they fall an easy prey, being rendered incapable of resistance by their shelly armour. We took six. Attached to the breast of one was a remora, or “sucking fish.” The length of this animal is from six to eight inches–colour blackish–body, scaleless and oily–head rather flat, on the back of which is the sucker, which consists of a narrow oval-shaped margin with several transverse projections, and ten curved rays extending towards the centre, but not meeting. The Indians of Jamaica and Cuba employed this fish as falconers do hawks. In calm weather, they carried out those which they had kept and fed for the purpose, in their canoes, and when they had got to a sufficient distance, attached the remora to the head of the canoe by a strong line of considerable length. When the remora perceives a fish, which he can do at a considerable distance, he darts away with astonishing rapidity, and fastens upon it. The Indian lets go the line, to which a buoy is attached to mark the course the remora has taken, and follows in his canoe until he thinks the game is exhausted; he then draws it gradually in, the remora still adhering to his prey. Oviedo says, “I have known a turtle caught by this method, of a bulk and weight which no single man could support.”

For four days we were anxiously watching for some indications of a breeze, but were so frequently deceived with “cat’s paws,” and the occasional slight flickering of the dog vane, that we sank into listless resignation. At length our canvass filled, and we soon came within sight of the Straits of Gibraltar. On our left was the coast of Spain, with its vineyards and white villages; and on our right lay the sterile hills of Barbary. Opposite Cape Trafalgar is Cape Spartel, a bold promontory, on the west side of which is a range of basaltic pillars. The entrance to the Mediterranean by the Straits, when the wind is unfavourable, is extremely difficult; but to pass out is almost impossible, the current continually setting in through the centre of the passage. Hence, onwards, the sail was extremely pleasant, being within sight of the Spanish coast, and the Islands of Yvica, Majorca, and Minorca, successively, until we reached the Gulf of Lyons. When the northerly wind blows, which, in Provence, is termed the _mistral_, the waves roll against the coast of Provence, and the recoil produces that ugly chopping sea for which this gulf is renowned. In the Mediterranean, even in the calmest weather, a light pleasant breeze springs up after sunset; this and the cloudless sky, and unobscured brilliancy of the stars, are attractions sufficient to allure the most somnolent and unromantic mortal to remain on deck.

The molusca, or oceanic insect, which emits a phosphorescent light, appeared here in vast quantities, which induced me to try experiments. I took a piece of black crape, and having folded it several times, poured some sea water taken fresh in a bucket, upon it: the water in the bucket, when agitated by the hand, gave out sparkling light. When the crape was thoroughly saturated with water, I took it to a dark part of the cabin, when it seemed to be studded with small sparkling stars; but more of the animals I could not then discern. Next day I put some water in a glass tumbler, and having exposed it to a strong solar light, with the help of a magnifying glass was enabled distinctly to discern the moluscae. When magnified, they appeared about the size of a pin’s head, of a yellowish brown colour, rather oval-shaped, and having tentaculae. The medusa is a genus of molusca; and I think M. le Seur told me he reckons forty-three or forty-four species of that genus.

We crossed the Gulf of Lyons, and came within the road of Marseilles, where we were taken charge of by a pilot. When we reached the mouth of the basin, a boat came alongside of us, and a man handed up a piece of wood, and said, “Mettez sur cela le nom du capitaine et du batiment;”–we were to perform quarantine. Whoever has performed quarantine can commiserate our condition. No one can quit the quarantine ground, or rather the space in the harbour alloted to vessels performing quarantine. If it be necessary to send any papers from the ship on shore, they are taken with a forceps and plunged into vinegar. If the sails of any other vessel touch those of one in quarantine, she too must undergo several days’ probation. Our time was five days; but as we had clean bills of health, and had lost none of our crew on the passage, we were allowed to count the day of our entering and the day of our going out of quarantine. The usual ceremonies being performed, I again stepped on European ground, and felt myself at home.


[24] The “Education ticket,” that of the “workies,” carried every thing before it in New York and the adjoining states, at the election of members of congress, &c.



An abstract of a “careful revision of the enumeration of the United States for the years 1790, 1800, 1810, 1820, and 1830,” compiled at the Department of State, agreeably to law; and an ABSTRACT from the Aggregate Returns of the several Marshals of the United States of the “Fifth Census.”

STATES. 1790. 1800. 1810. 1820. 1830. Maine 96,540 151,719 228,705 298,335 399,463 New Hampshire 141,899 183,762 214,360 244,161 269,533 Massachusetts 378,717 423,243 472,040 523,287 610,014 Rhode Island 69,110 69,122 77,031 83,059 97,210 Connecticut 258,141 231,002 262,042 275,202 297,011 Vermont 85,416 154,465 217,713 233,764 280,679 New York 340,120 586,756 959,049 1,372,812 1,913,508 New Jersey 184,139 211,949 245,555 277,575 320,778 Pennsylvania 434,373 602,365 810,091 1,049,458 1,347,672 Delaware 59,096 64,273 72,674 72,749 76,739 Maryland 319,728 341,548 380,546 407,350 446,913 D. Columbia — 14,093 24,023 33,039 39,588 Virginia 748,308 880,200 974,622 1,065,379 1,211,266 N. Carolina 393,751 478,103 555,500 638,829 738,470 S. Carolina 249,073 345,591 415,115 502,741 581,458 Georgia 82,548 162,101 252,433 340,987 516,504 Kentucky 73,077 220,955 406,511 564,317 688,844 Tennessee 35,791 105,602 231,727 422,813 684,822 Ohio — 45,365 230,760 581,434 937,679 Indiana — 4,875 24,520 147,178 341,582 Mississippi — 8,850 40,352 75,448 136,806 Illinois — — 12,233 55,211 157,575 Louisiana — — 76,556 153,407 215,791 Missouri — — 20,845 66,586 140,084 Alabama — — — 127,902 309,206 Michigan — — 4,762 8,896 31,123 Arkansas — — — 14,273 30,383 Florida — — — — 34,725 3,929,827 5,305,925 7,289,314 9,638,131 12,856,437


Per Cent. Per Cent. Maine 33,398 S. Carolina 15,657 N. Hampshire 10,391 Georgia 51,472 Massachusetts 16,575 Kentucky 22,066 Rhode Island 17,157 Tennessee 62,044 Connecticut 8,151 Ohio 61,998 Vermont 19,005 Indiana 132,087 New York 39,386 Mississippi 81,032 New Jersey 15,564 Illinois 185,406 Pennsylvania 25,416 Louisiana 40,665 Delaware 5,487 Missouri 110,380 Maryland 9,712 Alabama 141,574 D. Columbia 20,639 Michigan 250,001 Virginia 13,069 Arkansas 113,273 N. Carolina 15,592 Florida — Average 32,392




OF JULY 31, 1830.

_The following is part of a Letter written by a Creek Chief, from the Arkansas territory._

“The son of General M’Intosh, (an Indian chief), with the M’Intosh party, held a treaty with the government, and were induced, by promises, to remove to Arkansas. They were promised ‘a home for ever,’ if they would select one, and that bounds should be marked off to them. This has not been done. They were assured that they should draw a proportionate part of the annuity due to the Creek nation every year. They have planted corn three seasons–yet they have never drawn one cent of any annuity due to them! Why is this? They were promised blankets, guns, ammunition, traps, kettles, and a _wheelwright_. They have drawn some few of each class of articles, and only a few–they have no wheelwright. They were poor;–but above this, they were promised pay for the improvements abandoned by them in the old nation. This they have not received. They were further assured that they should receive, upon their arrival on Arkansas, _thirty dollars_ per head for each emigrant. This they have not received. But the acting sub-agent, in the spring 1829, finding their wants very pressing (indeed many of them were in a famishing condition), gave to each one his due bill, in the name of the agent, for the amount of bounty due them, and took their receipts for the amount, as vouchers for the agent, to settle his account by with the government. The consequence was, that the Indians, not regarding paper as of any real value, would go to the traders, and sell the due bills at what they could get for them. And the traders having no confidence in the promises of the government through its agents, united with the hazard of delay at all events, would not give the real value of the amount promised by the due bills. If the Indians attempted to trade them to the whites for cattle, or any thing which they stood in need of, the consequence was, that they were compelled to make a discount upon them. Not finding them worth as many dollars as they purported to be for, they were willing to let them go upon any terms, rather than keep them in their possession. The due bills amounted, in all, to about _twenty-one thousand dollars_, which due bills are now in the hands of the original holders, or the purchasers, but not lifted by the agent according to his promise. (Is not the government bound by the acts of its agent or attorney?). It is but fair to estimate the loss of the Indians at one third of the sum above stated, and this loss owing entirely to the government, by its agent’s withholding the fulfilment of its contract with the M’Intosh party.

* * * * *

“Mr. Joseph Brearly was left here by his father, the agent, in charge of his affairs, and being apprised of a party of _emigrants_ about to arrive, was making preparations to obtain the provisions necessary to subsist them for one year; and for that purpose had advertised to supply six thousand bushels of corn. The day came for closing the contract, when Colonel Arbuckle, commanding Cantonment Gibson, handed in a bid, in the name of the Creek nation, to furnish the amount of corn required at _one dollar and twelve cents_ per bushel; the next lowest bid to his was _one dollar and fifty cents_; so that Colonel Arbuckle saved the government 2,280 dollars.

* * * * *

“Mr. Blake, the sub-agent sent by Colonel Crowell, had superseded Mr. Brearly, and was engaged in giving his receipts for the corn delivered under the contract. A speculation was presented; and as the poor Indians were to be the victims of rapacity, why, it was all very well. The aforesaid Major Love, to secure the speculation, repaired to St. Louis, with _letters of credit_ from Mr. Blake, the sub-agent of Colonel Crowell, and purchased several thousand dollars’ worth of merchandize, and so soon as he could reach the Creek agency, commenced purchasing the corn receipts issued by the sub-agent. It is reasonable to suppose that the goods were sold, on an average, at two hundred per centum above cost and carriage; and by this means the Indians would get about one third of the value of their corn at the contract price!–they offered to let the receipts go at twenty-five per cent. discount, if they could only obtain cash for them.

“The United States owe the Creeks money–they have paid them none in three years–the money has been appropriated by congress. It is withheld by the agents. The Indians are destitute of almost every comfort for the want of what is due to them. If it is longer withheld from them, it can only be so, upon the grounds that the poor Indian, who is unable to compel the United States to a compliance with solemn treaties, must linger out a miserable degraded existence, while those who have power to extend to him the measure of justice, will be left in the _full_ possession of _all_ the _complacency_ arising from the solemn _assurance_, that they are either the _stupid_ or _guilty_ authors of his degradation and misery.


“P.S. The Creeks have sent frequent memorials, praying relief from the War Department; also a delegation, but can obtain no relief!!”

_Extract from a Communication made by a Cherokee Chief._

“A company of whites was in this neighbourhood, with forged notes and false accounts to a very considerable amount upon the Indians, and forcibly drove off the property of several families. This, Sir, is the cause of our misery, poverty, and degradation, for which we have been so much reproached. This is what makes us _poor devils_. If we fail to make good crops, some of the white neighbours must starve, for many of them are dependent upon us for support, either by fair or foul means. Some of the poor creatures are now travelling among us, almost starved, begging for something to eat–they are actually worse than Indians. If they can’t get by begging, they steal. To make us clear of these evils, and make us happy for ever, the unabating avarice of some of the Georgians, by their repeated acts of cruelty, point us to homes in the west–but as long as we have a pony or a hog to spare them, we will never go, and not then. This land is heaven’s gift to us–it is the birthright of our fathers: as long as these mountains lift their lofty summits to heaven, and these beautiful rivers roll their tides to the mighty ocean, so long we will remain. May heaven pity and save our distressed country!


The following Extracts may serve to show the state of the country to which the Indians are compelled to emigrate:


_Extract of a Letter, dated Prairie du Chien._

“January 15, 1830.

“There is a prospect, I think, that the Indian department in this part of the country will soon require efficient officers. There is little doubt that there will be a general and sanguinary war among the Indians in the spring. The outrages of the Sauks and Foxes, can be endured no longer. Within a short time, they have cut off the head of a young Munomonee Indian, at the mouth of Winconscin river–killed a Winnebago woman and boy, of the family of Dekaree, and a Sioux called Dixon. The whole Sioux nation have made arrangements for a general and simultaneous attack on the Foxes; the Winnebagoes, and probably the Munomonees will join them.”

“Little Rock, Ark. Ter. Feb. 5.

“_Murderous Battle._–A gentleman who arrived here yesterday, direct from the Western Creek agency, informs us that a war party of Osages returned just before he left the agency, from a successful expedition against the Pawnee Indians. He was informed by one of the chiefs, that the party seized a Pawnee village, high up on the Arkansas, and had surrounded it before the inmates were apprised of their approach. At first the Pawnees showed a disposition to resist; but finding themselves greatly outnumbered by their assailants, soon sallied forth from their village, and took refuge on the margin of a lake, where they again made a stand. Here they were again hemmed in by the Osages, who throwing away their guns, fell upon them with their knives and tomahawks, and did not cease the work of butchery as long as any remained to resist them. Not one escaped. All were slain, save a few who were taken prisoners, and who are perhaps destined to suffer a more cruel death than those who were butchered on the spot. Our informant did not learn what number of Pawnees were killed, but understood that the Osages brought in sixty or seventy scalps, besides several prisoners.

“We also learn, that the Osages are so much elated with this victory, that another war party were preparing to go on an expedition against some Choctaws who reside on Red river, with whom they have been at variance for some time past.”

_Extract of a Letter from an Officer of the Army, dated Prairie du Chien._


“May 6, 1830.

“_Indian Hostilities._–When coming down the Mississippi, on the raft of timber, a war party of Sioux came to me and landed on the raft, but did not offer any violence. They were seventy strong, and well armed; and when they arrived at the Prairie, they were joined by thirty Menominees, and then proceeded down the river in pursuit of the Sauks and Foxes, who lay below. This morning they all returned, and reported that they had killed ten of the Foxes and two squaws. I saw all the scalps and other trophies which they had taken; such as canoes, tomahawks, knives, guns, war clubs, spears, &c. A paddle was raised by them in the air, on which was strung the head of a squaw and the scalps. They killed the head chief of the Fox nation, and took from them all the treaties which the nation had made since 1815. I saw them, and read such as I wished. One Sioux killed, and three wounded, was all the loss of the northern party. The Winnebagoes have joined with the Sioux and Menominees, and the Potawatomies have joined with the Sauks and Foxes. We shall have a great battle in a day or two.”