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A M E R I C A N
A VIEW OF THE PRESENT SITUATION
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
Aftronomical Geography.-Geographical Definitions, Discovery, and General
Description of AMERICA and the UNITED STATES:-Of their Boundaries;
WITH A PARTICULAR DESCRIPTION OF
KENTUCKY, THE WESTERN TERRITORY, and VERMONT..Of their
Extent; Civil Divisions; Chief Towns; Climates ; Soils ; Trade ; Character;
TO WHICH IS ADDED,
BY JE DID I A H
M O RS E.
ILLUSTRATED WITH TWO SENT MAPS-ONE OF THE SOUTHERN, THE OTHER
P R E F A CE.
imperfect are all the accounts of AMERICA
hitherto published, even by those who once exclusively possessed the best means of information, that from them very little knowledge of this country can be acquired. Europeans have been the sole writers of American Geography, and have too often suffered fancy to supply the place of facts, and thus have led their readers into errors, while they professed to aim at removing their ignorance. But since the United State have become an independent nation, and have risen into Empire, it would be reproachful for them to suffer this ignorance to continue ; and the rest of the world have a right how to expect authentic information. To furnish his has been the design of the author of the folowing work; but he does not pretend that this design is compleated, nor will the judicious and
candid expect it, when they consider that he has trodden, comparatively, an unbeaten path—that he has had to collect a vast variety of materials—that these have been widely scattered—and that he could derive but little assistance from books already published. Four years have been employed in this work, during which period, the Author has visited the several states in the Union, and maintained an extensive correspondence with men of Science ; and in every instance has endeavoured to derive his information from the most authentic sources : he has also submitted his manuscripts to the inspection of Gentlemen in the states which they particularly described, for their correction. It is possible, notwithstanding, and indeed very probable, that inaccuracies
may have crept in ; but he hopes there are none of any great importance, and that such as may be observed, will not be made the subject of severe censure, but ascribed to some pardonable cause. He flatters himself, however, that the work now offered to the public, will be found to be as accurate, compleat, and impartial, as the present state of American Geography and History could furnish. After all, like the nation of which it treats, it is but an infant, and as such solicits the fostering care of the country it describes ; it will grow and improve as the nation advances towards maturity, and the Au
thor will gratefully acknowledge every friendly communication which will tend to make it perfect.
In the prosecution of the work, he has aimed at utility rather than originality, and of course, when he has met with publications suited to his purpose, he has made a free use of them; and he thinks it proper here to observe, that, to avoid unnecessary trouble, he has frequently used the words as well as the ideas of the writers, although the reader has not been particularly apprized of it.
For the Author distinctly to acknowledge the obligations he is under to many citizens of these states, as well as to some foreigners of distinction, residents among us, would swell this preface to an improper length; he cannot forbear, however, to express his peculiar obligation to EBENEZER HAZARD, Esq. Post-Master-General of the United States, for
permission of free access to his very large and valuable Collection of papers, from which he has derived much of his historical information. This collection has been made with unwearied care and minute exactness; and the
which are of unquestionable authenticity, are the best, and most complete depofitum of facts relating to the history of America from its first settlement, that is to be found in the United States. The Author's acknowledgments are likeA 3