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owner of the vessel in which they came, to the highest bidder, for a certain number of years, the term being regulated by the value of their labour. If they understand a trade, they are sold for a shorter time; but if they can only dig, they must endure the hardships of their condition for a longer period, during which they are so much at the disposal of their masters, that they may sell and re. sell them at their pleasure. We saw a whole cargo from England sold a few days ago ; and Arthur was so provoked at the sight of a high-spirited lad of his own age, driven before his purchaser, that he endeavoured to rescue bim; and if I had not had powerful friends, both he and the youth must have gone to prison for the offence.
You well know that the United States of America were formerly colonies of Great Britain ; but a dispute arising between them and the mother country, a civil war ensued, which terminated in the Americans becoming an independent people, in 1783. Since that period, the states have been united into what is called a federal government, forming one great nation by the union of the provinces, which each enjoy a separate jurisdiction, subject at the same time to the decrees of a general congress, composed of representatives from the diffe. rent states, and headed by a president chosen every
At the commencement of the independence of America, the union consisted of thirteen states
only, but three have since been added; and as the interior parts become more cultivated, it is likely the number of states will increase. Believe me, with compliments to the Middleton family, your affectionate brother,
Arthur Middleton to his Mother.
Washington. DEAR MOTHER,
WE made our first excursion from Phila. delphia, through the states of New Jersey and Delaware.
The South Mountain, which is one ridge of the great Allegany range, crosses New Jersey, and contains amazing quantities of iron ore. The interior part of the country is agreeably varied with small hills ; but towards the south, near the sea, it is flat and sandy, with few trees, except shrub oaks, and the white and yellow pines. Apple orchards are very frequent; and produce fine fruit, as I suppose, from the excellent cyder which we found in almost every house where we stopped in the province. с
Trenton is the capital of the state, from being the place where the legislature and the courts of justice hold their sittings. It has a flourishing college ; and in its neighbourhood are several gentlemen's seats, finely situated on the banks of the Delaware. Burlington is another principal town, extending along the Delaware, which, op. posite to it, is a mile wide. The chief streets make a pleasing appearance, from rows of trees being planted in the fronts of the houses.
There are several other towns, but we saw nothing very remarkable in them.
The state of Delaware is a peninsula, bounded on the east by the river that bears its name, and the ocean; the bay of Chesapeak encloses it on the western side. To the south, it is a low, flat country, abounding in forests of pine, which, when sawed into planks, form a profitable article of commerce. The northern side is more fertile, and produces rich harvests of wheat. Dover is the seat of government; but Wilmington is the largest and most agreeable town in the state. We rested there one day, for the purpose of examining some of the mills in the neighbourhood, which stand upon Brandywine River, there being no less than thirteen, almost close to each other; some of them grind flour, others saw wood or stone.
The construction of these mills is extremely ingenious, and so contrived, that a great many operations are performed with a very little labour. There is also
machinery for loading and unloading the vessels that bring goods or convey them from this place.
Mr. Franklin having settled the route, we took a final leave of Philadelphia, in a stage waggon, intending first to make the tour of the southern states. The country about Philadelphia is well cultivated, and abounds with neat country houses; but has a bare appearance, from the taste of the inhabitants for cutting down all trees near their dwellings, either for the sake of the wood, or to make way for the plough. The want of hedges' adds to the nakedness of the prospect; for the fields are divided by a double railing, placed in a zig-zag, so that the ends of one tier rest upon those of the next. We crossed the Schuylkill by the lowest of three floating bridges, which are made of large trees chained together, and placed crosswise in the water ; upon this raft, beams are put, the contrary way, and it is afterwards boarded and railed on each side. I felt a little alarmed when I saw the bridge sink under water by the weight of our waggon ; but one of the passengers smiling at my fear, I presently recovered myself. Our ride to Chester lay through a pleasant country, diversified with woods and rising grounds; and as we approached the town we were gratified by a majestic view of the river Delaware. The first colonial assembly having met at this place, is the only distinction it can boast. We passed through Wilmington for the second time, and halted at a small town, called
Havre de Grace, on the banks of the Susquehan. nah river, which takes its source at a great distance from the north, and empties itself into the Chesapeak. It is here a mile broad: its high banks, covered with woods, form a grand and picturesque scenery, which is greatly enlivened by the multitudes of wild-fowl sporting on the water; particularly the canvass-back duck, so named from the colour of the feathers between the wings: this bird is considered by the Americans as an exquisite dainty. Being ferried over the river, we travelled along a poor country to Baltimore, rendered still more disagreeable by the execrable roads. For miles, the driver was obliged to call to us withinside, to balance the carriage, and prevent it from oversetting, by stretching our necks out of the window, on whichever side it rose uppermost. « Now, gentlemen, to the right; now to the left;" was continually bawled in our ears. As we were passing a valley of rich black earth, we sunk to the very boxes of the wheels. The poor horses plunged, and used every effort to set us free from the quagmire, but all in vain; there wes at, fixed, and I expected that we should have been swallowed up, but our coachman found a kind farmer, at a little distance, who came with his servants to our assist. ance, provided with poles and ropes, and delivered us from the danger. Though Annapolis is the capital of Maryland, Baltimore is the largest town in the province, and the most considerable place of trade