Imágenes de página



Carpathian Mountains, where one had the consolation of rattling over the stones at the rate of twelve or fifteen miles an hour. In Tenessee four was our utmost speed. Of a verity, these roads much require an American Macadam, or Western Wade.

Two or three parties of migratory farmers from the eastward passed us. Their wives and worldly goods were placed in long waggons, with a tilt, which rose at the ends like a Burman canoe; and the pioneers themselves, in their shirt-sleeves, either bestrode their rear wheelers, armed with a long whip, or trudged on manfully by the side of their moving residence, with broad axes on their shoulder. I stopped for some time to admire a picturesque group of adventurers; a single family, seated under a sycamore near a clear stream a comely wife and smiling infant, with a fine specimen of manhood in the husband; his younger brother unyoking the horses, ornamented with fringes of thongs descending from the harness, to keep off the flies. Now these people had left a comfortable home for no better reason than that they wanted a wider range, or "all for the mere love of moving."

We emerged from the forest, and found ourselves in a little terrestrial Paradise, so great was the contrast between the smiling, the varied, the cultivated, and picturesque environs of Nashville, the capital of Tenessee; the clean and comfortable appearance of the town itself, and



the scenes we had passed through between it and the Mississippi. Doubtless "there is a pleasure in the pathless woods!" doubtless there is a great charm in solitude, for a time; but still a healthy mind will hail with satisfaction and delight a prospect which shows that some of the great family of mankind are fulfilling the design for which our first parents were placed in Edenare cultivating the earth, and "keeping and dressing" the great garden of a fruitful valley.

[ocr errors]


Nashville Hotel.-A pleasant Change.-A Job.-A Tenessee Supper.Reflections.- Panorama.- Indian Skirmishes.-A Sulphur Spring.-The Bridge.-The Legislature in Session. -The Members.-Mr. Yeatman.-The Penitentiary.-Prison Discipline. Vauxhall Gardens. - Effect of a Visit to Canada.-Emigrants ought to settle among their own People. -Leave Nashville. A facetious Driver. The Americans not musical.-Old Kentuck.-Delightful Climate.--Negroes en route.--Rival Claims of Clay and Jackson.--An opinion.Religion in Kentucky.-A Camp Meeting.-The Sink Hole. --A violent Quarrel.-A regular Snorter.-Female Foresters. -Pity the Rover's Bride. A Jeremiad. American Gold Mines. Gold in Dust and Gold in Mass.-Smelting.-Aborigines worked the Mines. Return of Gold for several years. The Nullifiers.-Cut off the Tail.-Arrive at Louisville; Falls of Ohio.-The Canal.-Freedom of Election in the Back Settlements.-A Temptation to enter into Holy Wedlock.-The Banks of Ohio.

For the honour of the thing, we drove up in the weary waggon to the door of the principal inn of Nashville, in the principal square, in the centre of which stood the Court-house; and alighted amidst a crowd of members of the State Legislature, which was now in session. Several members arrived about the same time that we did, but on horseback, with their legs cased in green baize leggins, tied round the ankles and knees with tape.



It was a great luxury to get into a comfortable and a carpeted room after the severe trial of strength and the violent exercise I had had, and to be enabled to perform my ablutions, and repose for a short season in quiet. But the violent ringing of a bell soon roused me, and a negro-boy put his head into the room, and said that supper would soon be ready. I determined to appear in a town-like costume before these provincial legislators, and I gave Mungo a surtout to have it ironed by any tailor in the neighbourhood. He returned with it, and said that the knight of the needle demanded one dollar for the job. "That seems a heavy charge for the backwoods?" I said." If Massa tink so, Massa can settle with him tailor himself; he will take supper wid Massa!"—" Vivent la liberté et égalité !" I exclaimed. The tailor after supper compounded for three quarters of a dollar!

I descended to the passage, and found a crowd of expectants before a closed door. Another bell rang out loudly and rapidly from a belfry on the roof of the hotel. The door was unlocked, and we all rushed into a long hall, like a squadron of Hulans charging the enemy, and found tables covered with meat, vegetables, preserved fruit, tea, coffee, and bread, both of maize and wheat, and soft hoe and waffel cakes. Down the company sat in a hurry noses were blown to one side cotton handkerchiefs were spread on the knees cuffs were turned back, and then com

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]




menced "the crash of the crockery and the clash of the steel!" No ceremony was used; each man helped himself with his own knife and fork, and reached across his neighbour to secure a fancied morceau. Bones were picked with both hands knives were drawn through the teeth with the edge to the lips; the scalding mocha and souchong were poured into saucers to expedite the cooling, and the cup deposited in a saucerette on the right. Beefsteaks, apple tart, and fish, were seen on the same plate the one moment, and had disappeared the next! The black domestics bustled about in breathless haste. Mr. Edmonstone, the respectable landlord, stood at the end of one of the tables, serving out meat and seeing that his guests wanted nothing.

I was rather bewildered, and could not eat for some minutes, when I saw first one man get up, and then another, and walk out of the room wiping their mouths with the heel of their hand. "I hope the gentlemen are not displeased at any thing?" I said to a neighbour jocularly. "Oh no! they are quite content and have finish

ed their supper!" The rest continued to eat as if it was their last meal, or as if they intended to choke themselves, and disappeared so suddenly that it seemed as if they had finished by eating one another; but on going into the bar I found them all alive and well, lounging about with their hands in their pockets, balancing themselves on the chairs, taking a quid from

« AnteriorContinuar »