Silas Wood.

Table rock album and sketches of the falls [of Niagara] and scenery adjacent online

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e Proprietor of the Niagara Falls Museum, most grateful to the traveling
public for the liberal support he has received during a residence of twenty-five yean
at the Falls, would respectfully announce, that be has just completed a new road,
leading down the bank to the foot of Table Rock and the great Horse Shoe Falls,
for the accommodation of those wishing to get the grandest view, and pass under
the great sheet of water.

The road is immediately opposite the Museum, near Table Rock. It is perfectly
safe of ascent, being cut through the solid rock. The view, in passing down, is
one of the finest that can be had. The Proprietor furnishes all the necessary
dresses and good guides, who will point out all the interesting localities to those
wishing to go under the Great Cataract.

He would also call the attention of the public to his Museum, so highly spoken
of by all scientific men who have visited it Such institutions, in cities, are gener-
ally made more a repository of works of Art than those of Nature. He has made
a great many improvements and additions to his already large collection, of which
particularly the native things are worthy of the attention of the stranger.


Entered according to act of Congress, in the year 1848, by

In the Clerk's Office of the Northern District of the State of New York.


IN accordance with patent custom, we have christened our
book; but the title by which it is hereafter to be distinguished
from other publications on the same subject, is, we are bound
to confess, something of a misnomer. This is not, strictly
speaking, the "ALBUM OF THE TABLE ROCK," it is a melange
made up of excerpts from, a library of Albums. The absence
of arrangement and classification of the articles is the result
of accident, not of carelessness or design. The materials are
selected at random, and the grouping, grotesque as it may be,
is in perfect keeping with any one or all the books from which
the gleanings are made. If seriousness and solemnity are
placed in ludicrous juxtaposition with levity and lightness, that
is the doing of the authors of the books themselves, and not
of the editor of this compilation from these books. Our right
to print nonsense is not a jot more questionable than that of
the visitors to the Falls to write it in these public books; but
having the fear of an "intelligent public" before our eyes,, we
have purposely abstained from making any more licentious use
of our undoubted privilege than is necessary for preserving to
our book the character of an Album.

Much that is written is not Gt to be printed, to be sure; and
it is to be regretted that the innumerable host of writers who
have perpetrated composition in the volumes of manuscript
now bo-fore us, should have added so little to the general stock
of legitimate and permanent literature. But the actual amount
of frivolous nonsense which constitutes so large a portion of the



contents of the books from which our selection is made, is not
at all to be calculated by the specimens now and then exhibited.
We have given the best; and, when in any degree redeemed
by wit or humor, we have not been so fastidious, perhaps, as
we should have been, in excluding the worst specimen of this
gratuitous authorship always endeavoring, however, to take
care that decency shall not be outraged, nor delicacy shocked;
and in this respect, however improbable it may seem, precau-
tion has been by no means unnecessary.

In criticising the "Album" if anybody should condescend
to honor it in that way it should not be forgotten, that the
articles of which it is composed are written, not only by per-
sons who are not recognized or professed authors, but without
the care, time, or study, usually bestowed on composition in-
tended for the press generally, it is to be presumed, without
any premeditation whatever. In making up the book, we have
not unfrequently been obliged to add and deduct, as the case
might be, to lines which their authors meant to be of a certain
measure, in order to bring them within the rules of prosody.
If, in such cases, we have weakened or mistranslated an idea,
the best excuse will be to plead guilty ; and we do so, accord
ingly, with this condition, that we be distinctly chargeable, at
the same time, with making all the alterations which we have
made and they are not few on purpose, and because we
thought they were amendments.

It is likely very, that there are numerous plagiarisms in
this, as in other "Albums." Nay, we do not know that we
may not, in some cases, have made a readable stanza, here
and there, out of another's literary larceny : but, not having
read all the printed books in the world, we put in ignorance
as our plea in defense of the unintentional error.

There is, perhaps, little originality in the book, upon the
whole; but the idea of getting up such a work has not
hitherto, to our knowledge, been acted upon; and if the
publication of it should be attended with any measure of


success, it may have a tendency to elevate and purify the
character of these Albums and Registers hereafter, inasmuch
as when people find that " there 's a chiel amang them takin'
notes," they will, in all likelihood, be more guarded, perhaps
more studious, too, to write well what they do write; and let
us hope, that in the next edition we shall be able, not only to
add much that may be interesting, but also furnish the names
of our numerous contributors. It has been annoying to us ia
compiling the present work, to find such extreme parsimony
of signature so much so, that, in many cases, it is difficult
to tell where one article ends and another begins in the

We now send forth our little pioneer, not without hope that
it will meet with some favor; and, at all events, without any
doubt that the idea, thus suggested, will hereafter be success-
fully followed out, whether failure or success be the recom-
pense of our present undertaking.

June, 1856.




" There ' nothing great or bright, thou glorious Fall 1"

Thou mayest not to the fancy's sense recall,

The thunder-riven cloud, the lightning's leap,

The stirring of the chambers of the deep,

Earth's emerald green, and many tinted dyes,

The fleecy whiteness of the upper skies,

The tread of armies thickening as they come,

The boom of cannon and the beat of drum,

The brow of beauty and the form of grace,

The passion and the prowess of our race,

The song of Homer in its loftiest hour,

The unresistcd sweep of human power

Britannia's trident on the azure sea,

America's young shout of liberty!

Oh ! may the waves that madden in thy deep,

There spend their rage nor climb the encircling steep,-

And till the conflict of thy surges cease,

The nations on thy banks repose in peace !


The roaring of thy waters, O Niagara, would have struck
me with terror, had 1 not been long familiar with the roaring
of human passion. I should have wondered at thy eternal
motion, had I not felt my own soul to be infinitely more mo-
tional ; at thy unchangeable perpetuity were there not in my
own soul a voice forever crying " through the ages I am the


same, and my years end not" My soul has felt a deeper fall
than thy waters, O Niagara, and experienced a higher rise
than thy sun-penciled steams. All that thou hast, and art,
most wonderful ! long ago the unseen engendered in my soul^
and I hail thee now, though seeing thee for the first time as a
familiar friend. Thou art the actual type of my ideal and
yet, not the highest, for I believe in greater than thou for is
not the Greater present in every conscious, thinking soul ?

Jane 8, 1843. Ham, Sorry, England.

The subscriber would respectfully inform the ladies and gen-
tlemen visiting Niagara Falls, that he has taken up his resi-
dence in its vicinity, for the purpose of aiding those of an am-
bitious temperament, in their efforts at immortalization. The
subscriber has effected arrangements with several artists of
reputation and science, and will be happy, at all times, to sup-
ply those who may favor him with their orders. Signs of all
descriptions and sizes, both of board and tin, and in Roman,
Greek, or German characters, in blue, red, or green colored let-
tering. He would urge upon the public the superiority of this
plan over the old one, of carving the name on the barks of
trees. By adopting his plan, greater legibility and publicity is
obtained, as well as greater durability. The subscriber has
engaged several expert climbers, who will fasten these signs,
if needed, to the tops of the highest trees, or weld them on
the most remote rocks. But to those professing to be their
own artists, he would say that he intends having a full supply
of paints and brushes, of the most approved make, as well as
an abundant quantity of the softest kind of red chalk. Such
gentlemen as prefer the time-honored custom of carving their
names, can obtain, at the subscriber's place, the best Barlow
penknives of the most approved patterns, including the cele-
brated style used by the facetious gentleman that cut his
way through the pine swamp. A call is respectfully solicited
from all.


Cave of the Winds.


I have gazed on nature here abroad,

I have wandered o'er the briny deep ;
Of all thy works, Almighty God,

This is the greatest, this is the chief.

A roaring cataract, ever foaming, ever rushing,

Ever boiling, ever raging, ever roaring, ever gushing

From some great source, which I dare not tell,

It dashes madly down, as though to the very pit of hell.

Presumptous man, you dare to write

Of nature's works and the Great Architect of all !
Bend down thy knee, and revere His might,

Who formed this cataract, who made this fall.


Forgive these lines; they emanate from the pen of one
who derives his inspiration from the sublime works which
surround him. Poetry is not my forte. I was never formed
to be a brilliant writer; but silence is not the only admiration
which these great works deserve. I have been affected, aye,
and deeply too, by incidents which occur in every day life, by
the selfishness of mankind, the coldness of friends, the signs
of mortality, as some cherished companion, some favorite
branch, was suddenly lopped from the great tree of life ; nay,
I have even been touched more nearly than this I have lost
home, friends, kindred, I am a solitary wanderer o'er the
world's wide waste I have sipped, to its very dregs, the cup
of affliction, and my spirit has drank deep from the cup of
agony ; but, in spite of all, T cannot gaze upon this spot with-
out feeling how little, very, very little and insignificant are
my sorrows when compared with the ills of the many; and
power, who, in one moment, can level all mankind with the dust,
especially when I witness these great signs of the Creator's
can root out the seeds of evil from the earth, and the germs
of sorrow from the heart, planting in their place the everlast-
ing fruits of righteousness, of peace, of comfort, and of glad
tidings unto all.


Dublin, Ireland


" ! not to sing presumptuous praise,
In studied words and measured lays,

This scenery survey
Omnipotence is imaged here,
Let vainer homage disappear,
And kneel and pray.

I have stood in the forest, with no one near but God, and
mused upon his grandeur, his power and his great mercy ;
while the low winds, sighing among the trees, seemed as if
breathing a requiem over some departed soul. I have stood
upon the banks of Huron, while the waters were lashed into
fury, and seemingly striving to discover some helpless object
to overwhelm in their rage ; then I thought, " How wonderful
are thy works, O God, and thy ways past finding out."
Again, I have stood, when it seemed as if God had said to
the waves, "Peace, be still," and their low, satisfied murmur
seemed to reply, "Thy will, O Lord, and not mine be done."
I have stood on the banks of the river as it glided peacefully
by, seeming to say, "Thus shall the soul of the just man be
yea, their peace shall flow as a river." All these have I seen ;
but when I saw Niagara, I stood dumb, "lost in wonder, love,
and praise." Can it be, that the mighty God who has cleft
these rocks with a stroke of his power, who has bid these
waters roll on to the end of time, foaming, dashing, thunder-
ing in their course ; can it be, that this mighty Being has said
to insignificant mortals, "I will be thy -God, and thou shalt
be my people 2 " ! Lord, thy mercy as well as thy power
endureth forever! Who can go "within the veil" which thine
own hand hath spread, and thus separate from the busy world,
with nought but the thunderings of thy power to be heard,
say "there is no God?"

Roll on ! thou great Niagara, roll on ! and by thy ceaseless
roaring, lead the minds of mortals from Nature's contempla-
tion up to Nature's God.


T. Eamctt's Drawing Room, > Detroit, Mich.

Oct 17th, 1848. 5

May the mighty waters of the Niagara smother, in their
eternal vortex, all the animosities and rancors that may ever
have existed between Great Britain and her fair daughter


of the West, and remain, to succeeding generations, an ever-
lasting and indestructible monument of the harmony, which,
1 trust, will never cease to exist between the two nations, (of
one blood,) at once the most enterprising and the most enlight-
ened in the world.
May 23, 1849. GEORGE MAIR.

Luego que las cataratas vi, luego sus cuidas me dieron, un
no se que, que me hicieron, sosprendente loque vi.

Marro 25, de 1850.

Alfor Dr. A. X. S. Martin, Editor de la Cronica, N. Y.

Caro amigo: Bartante enfermo acabo de llegar a las cata-
ratas del Niagara, pero las impressiones que en mi han pro-
ducido, han hecho desaparecer cari completamente mi m;il.
Pintar a v. lo que acabo de ver, me es imposible ; y u manana
vuelvo a leer las descripciones publicadas por varios escritores
adocenados, me veire de ellos y los dire que no se metan a
pintar y esplicar la naturaliza.

De vd. afmo amigo,


7 de Juio, 1849.

Mon opinion est qu 'un jour en le viendra a terre.


On voit servant des tableaux qui representent les chutes de
Niagara, mais cet imposible d'en faire la moindre idee, et
faut en venir sur le lieu pour en juger.


Should cruel fate, by some unconquer'd spell,
Consign our bodies, souls and all, to hell,
May falls like these be sent there too,
To drown us out of such a monstrous stew.

T. J. B.
Aug. 25, '49.



Roulez volre voix de tonnerre ! puissantes cataractes. Ce-
Itii qui vous crea regarde la-haut ce qui se passe ici has a
de'criere ses oeuvres imrauable, c'est entreprendre de de'pas-
scr ia limite qu 'il a marquee a la capacite de 1'horame!

Oh! vous tous qui visitez ces chutes immortelles, abaissez-
vous devaut la main de Dieu ! Dieu, parle cette voix si forte,
riiomme doit se taire et adorer !

Jcudi Midi, 15 Nov., 1849.

Hail to thee, fair rainbow ! bright emblem of hope as
in the mist of Niagara thou welcomest the rising sun in his
resplendent glory.


January 13, '49.


Eternal prototype of God !

When first the morning stars did sing,

And the all-glorious sun was placed on high ;

How didst thou rear thy awful crest

At His own bidding, and thy thunders spoke

Of the creation born and ever onward

Through successive ages still is thy impetuous course,

Bespeaking praise to Him, thy great Creator:

Lo, the poor Indian doth bend before thce

And in thy presence feels that God is nigh!

And the Great Spirit near him to protect:

All recognize in thee power greatness vastness!

Beautiful, most beautiful, whether

In thy murmuring music

Or thy reverberating, echoing thunders,

And thy feathery spray, and rainbows,

Bespeaking hope and faith;

And as thou dashest o'er the ledge,

Behold the gorgeous emerald green,


Woven through with silvery thread
And then thy milky flood below,
And eddies and o'erhanging rocks.
Call forth the exclamation, "beautiful."

Serene thou art and in thy presence
We do feel sweet peace to steal
O'er us, and that the soul all lost
To earth and all around, doth wing
Its thoughts to other scenes,
And we do dwell afar 'mong those
Long lost and dwellers in a better land.
The mind is lulled to a repose
And we feel
Heady to lean on God and trust in Him.

Sublime surpassing far all else

Of thy own nature thou art monarch

Over all and doth feel thy power

Who shall stop thy way,

Or say unto thy floods, flow not ?

Thou wouldst dash aside the net

Woven by vain man to hold thee,

And rend them as the brittle reed.

I have paid my tribute to thee,

And now will I repose thou hast been

To me a lesson deep and ineffaceable

And I leave this spot, I trust, a better man.

Philadelphia, Aug. 2, 1847.


Niagara, I love to hear thy voice,

And while I look on thy array of waters

Careering onward with resistless force,

And showing forth the might and power of Him

Who ruleth over all 'tis then my soul

Is filled with awe, and I can realize

That God is here, that he is present now,


Oh ! let a song of praise ascend to Him

Who gives us all things richly to enjoy,

And while we gaze upon this glorious scene,

Lc-t us remember thou dost shadow forth

The glory of Omnipotence.

Awe-struck we gaze on these o'erhanging rocks,

And mark thy waters as they onward flow,

And hear, Niagara! thy unceasing roar.

We watch the clouds of spray as they ascend,

And view the bright inimitable green,

Too dazzling to the eye, and then we feel

That scenes like these, stupendous and sublime,

Must lose their greatness when compared with Him

Whose presence fills the immensity; then while 'tis ours

To gaze upon His works, may we be led

To worship and adore; to live for him,

That when earth's scenes shall fail before our eyes,

We may behold more glorious worlds above,

And through the sacrifice of Him who gave

His life for fallen man, dwell ever more

Where love, and joy, and peace forever reign.

Nao York, August 12, 1847.

Niagara like thy Maker, great.


On reading that the only words spoken by the yonng lady recently killed at th
Falls, after the accident, were " Let me "

"Let me," and here the fast receding breath
Denied the power of utterance the throb
Of that young heart grew faint. Ah, reckless Death,
How didst thou then of hope surviving bosoms rob !

What was the wish thus less than half expressed,
That latest image of the aching brain,

Imprisoned in the fair young sufferer's breast,
Without the strength to burst the feeble chain.


Was it a prayer that she might longer live,

Addressed to Him who holds the scroll of fate ?

Or did she wish a parting thought to give

In trust to those that watching, round her wait?

Some fond remembrance of her distant home,
Where late perhaps maternal love had shed

Its hallowed flame, and when resolved to roam
Had breathed a farewell blessing on her head.

Ah, who so fitting now to claim her thoughts,
As she whose hand sustained her helpless years ?

Oh, that the action of that hand, were brought,
To wipe, with tender care, those dying tears.

See, in this theatre of nature's might,

In boundless strength the dashing waters rush,

With headlong fury o'er the dizzy height,
And threaten e'en the solid rock to crush.

But mark the contrast ! On that bed of pain
The form reclines of nature's noblest art,

Whose strongest energy is spent in vain,
To breathe the last conception of her heart.

Great Ruler of the destinies of Man!

Teach us to reverence thy dark decree ;
Forgive the daring murmur at thy plan,

And make us yield and humbly trust to thee.

The last words of the dying girl may be

The first to form the Christian's hopeful prayer;

Trusting her happy spirit is with thee ;

He cries, " Father ' Let me ' join her there."

O thou, Niagara! no Eloquence - can set forth thy own
native, untiring, ceaseless Eloquence roll on ! And you, ye
Poets, stand abashed, n'r dare attempt impossibilities.





Niagara! Monarch of earth's wonders, reflection of Al-
mightiness, in thy celestial beauty, and thy dread magnif-
icence, and ceaseless thunder song roll on thy course
echoing ever the nothingness of man the boundless majesty
of God!


August 31, 1847.


One would think that emotions of sublimity knocked com-
mon sense into " pi " arid stirred up foaming fancies in the
intellect, something like the boiling waters in this double and
twisted caldron down here; after looking over the Albums
around here. Why the Mammolh Cave don't men know
what they are going to write before they begin, and say it so,
they and some others know, after it is written.



Thou Lord of water power in thy Majestic Glory thou
art all and more than all my soul conceived thee, I never
dreamed thy wonders to be so numberless and vast! beauty
in union with grandeur here fill and elevate, and satisfy my

September 1, 1847.

While standing under the horse-shoe Fall,
Didn't it look grand and you feel small?

THOMAS A. DWYN, Dublin, Ireland.

Majestic greatness sits, Niagara, upon thy brow,
And o'er thy rocks in thundering grandeur roll ;
We gaze, in silent wonder wrapped and humbly bow,
To thee, God, who thus doth thrill our inmost soul.

Albany, N. F, Sept. 30/A, 1847.


This is but the breathings of the great "I Am!" What
must his anger be ?
Mingled with mercy.

Roll on, thou dark green flood, roll on ; time measurest not
thine age eternity can but express thy end. Creation's
dawn witnessed thy earliest gush, Creation's doom can but
extinguish thy perpetual rush.

Oh! God!! Great are thy works! Oh! Man!! Hovr
small are thine, when placed in the same view.

July 3Qth, 1847. Sandwich Islands.

The Falls of " Niagara" far surpass any natural curiosity in
the known world. No human eye that has not beheld this
cataract, can form any idea of its greatness. Like all the
works of God's creation, it shows forth to his glory.

August 3d, 1847. Wcstchcutcr Co., M Y.

Niagara here Nature holds its sway,
While man, with both delight and awe, doth
Gaze and wonder at its magnificence.


Niagara each hour, each hour each day, each day,

The rich, the poor, the gentle pass your way ;

The tradesman from his toil released,

Seeks beauties that our God decreed

To flow from Niagara; mighty as before,

You '11 live for ages, when ages shall be no more,

Made by that power, that power that man can ne'er destroy,

Our Lord, our everlasting God, from all eternity:

Steadfastly you stand as ever seen by those,

That thus appreciate the works which God bestows \


Great, beautiful Falls ! you '11 continue great,
And live in grandeur, when different is our state,
When old age comes, or sad despair,
'T is thus to thee, oh God ! we '11 pour our prayer.
Falls, mighty Falls, aloft with moistened eyes,
I send my humble gratitude with tearful sighs,
To God who ever sends us hope and trust,
Though we are sinful he is just;
If we ask pardon, our mighty God is kind,
And gives us hope in prayer, in peace of mind.
Niagara Falls! the mighty work of God,
I feel how great, how wondrous is our Lord.

Auffust 15, 1847

No man should ever leave this great display of God's
works, without entering under the falls, where is afforded the
most sublime of the grand scenes here abounding. There he
can sit and calmly meditate, shut out from everything but
God and his most grand work.


Let not vanity and presumption attempt a task too great for
inspiration. B.

'T was great to speak a world from naught,

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Online LibrarySilas WoodTable rock album and sketches of the falls [of Niagara] and scenery adjacent → online text (page 1 of 8)