Copyright
S.A. Ferrall.

A Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America online

. (page 14 of 15)
Online LibraryS.A. FerrallA Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America → online text (page 14 of 15)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


WHO ARE IN FAVOUR OF AND WHO ARE OPPOSED TO

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 _debût_ 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 _café
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° 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.

FOOTNOTES:

[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.




APPENDIX.



NEW CENSUS OF THE UNITED STATES.

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


INCREASE FROM 1820 TO 1830.


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




EXTRACTS

FROM

"THE CHEROKEE PHOENIX,"

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


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 14

Online LibraryS.A. FerrallA Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America → online text (page 14 of 15)