« ZurückWeiter »
similar length to those that com- Our author had not yet crossed: pose the body of the house, but the Alleghanies, or extended his not quite so thick, and gradually course beyond the confines of sloped on each side. Two doors, Philadelphia, when we find the which often supply the place of singular remark, that during the windows, are made by sawing war, in the time of the French reaway a part of the trunks that volution, the inhabitants of the form the body of the house. The neighborhood of Bedford found it chimney, always placed at one of more to their advantage to send the extremities, is likewise made their corn to Pittsburgh, and with the trunks of trees of a suit- from thence to New Orleans, by able length ; the back of the chim- . the Ohio and Mississippi, a course ney is made of clay about six of more than 2,000 miles, than to inches thick, which separates the Philadelphia or Baltimore, not fire from the wooden walls. Not- exceeding 200 or 250 miles. If withstanding this want of precau- this be generally true, what a prostion, fires very seldom happen in pect does it afford of the future the country places, The space prosperity of the western-country! between these trunks of trees is The passage of the Alleghanies filled up with clay, but so very offers few remarks of interest or carelessly, that the light may be importance. On these mountains seen through in every part ; in our author searched for a species consequence of which these huts of the Azalea, a plant of singular are exceedingly cold in winter, importance, since to the valuable notwithstanding
the amazing qualities of the olive tree, it adds quantity of wood that is burnt. the power of bearing the cold of The doors move upon wooden the most northern climates. He Iringes, and the greater part of found it, and recognised it to be them have no locks. In the night the same plant which his father time they only push them to, or had discovered ; but the seeds fasten them with a wooden peg. had failed, in consequence of their Four or five days are sufficient for soon growing rancid.
We trust two men to finish one of these our author has been more fortu. houses, in which not a nail is used. nate, though of his success we Two great beds receive the whole have no information. It is a diefamily. It frequently happens cious plant, not above five feet in that in the summer the children height : its roots spread horizonsleep upon the ground, in a kind tally, and give birth to several of rug. The floor is raised from shoots. The plant grows only one to two feet above the surface in cool shady places, and in a ferof the ground, and boarded. They tile soit; the roots are of a citron generally make use of feather beds, colour. On these high grounds or feathers alone, and not mat- coal is not uncommon, but little tresses. Sheep being very scarce, attended to, as it is necessary to the wool is very dear ; at the clear the ground from the trees. same time they reserve it to make Labour is, however, dear, and stockings. The clothes belong- the contest between expense and ing to the family are hung up convenience, of course, frequent. round the room, or suspended The vast river, the Ohio, is upon a long pole." P. 98-30. formed by the conflux of the Mo
nongahela and Alleghany rivers. Pittsburgh, in the month of July, At this junction Pittsburg is built, 1802, there was a three-mast veswhich was the site of Fort Du- sel of two-hundred and fifty tons, quesne, and the key of the western and a smaller one of ninety, which country. It is no longer of im was on the point of being finished. portance in a military view, but it These ships were to go in the is the connecting medium of the spring following to New Orleans, eastern and western states, and, as loaded with the produce of the a commercial depôt, of peculiar country, after having made a pasvalue. Corn, hams, dried pork, sage of two thousand two hundred bar iron, coarse linen, bottles, miles before they got into the whiskey, and salt butter, from its Ocean. There is no doubt but dependencies, are embarked on they can, by the same rule, build the Ohio for the Caribbees, ships two hundred leagues beyond through New Orleans. At the the mouth of the Missouri, fifty latter port, they receive in from that of the river Illinois, and change cotton, raw sugar, and in- even in the Mississippi, two hunddigo. These are sent by sea to red beyond the place whence these Philadelphia and Baltimore ; and rivers flow ; that is to say, six the bargemen return to these hundred and fifty leagues from ports, from which they go again the sea ; as their bed in the apby land to Pittsburgh.
pointed space is as deep as that of
the Ohio at Pittsburgh. In con“ What many perhaps are igno- sequence of which it must be a rant of in Europe, is, that they wrong conjecture to suppose that build large vessels on the Ohio, the immense tract of country, waand at the town of Pittsburgh. tered by these rivers, cannot be One of the principal ship-yards is populous enough to execute such upon the Monongahela, about two undertakings. The rapid populahundred fathoms beyond the last tion of the three new western houses in the town. The timber states, under less favourable cirthey make use of is the white oak, cumstances, proves this assertion or quercus alba ; the red oak, or to be true. Those states, where quercus rubra ; the black oak, or thirty years ago there was scarce. quercus tinctoria ; a kind of nut ly three hundred inhabitants, are tree, or juglans minima : the Vir- now computed to contain upwards ginia cherry-tree, or cerasus Vir- of a hundred thousand ; and ginia ; and a kind of pine which though the plantations on the they use for masting, as well as roads are scarcely four miles disfor the sides of the vessels, which tant from each other, it is very require a slighter wood. Thé rare to find one, even among the whole of this timber being near most flourishing, where one can. at hand,the expenses of building is not with confidence ask the owner, not so great as in the ports of the whence he has emigrated ; or, ac, Atlantick states. The cordage is cording to the trivial manner of manufactured at Redstone and the Americans, “ what part of the Lexington, where there are two world do you come from ?"! as if extensive rope-walks, which also these immense and fertile regions supply ships with rigging that were to be the asylum common to are built at Marietta, and Lou- all the inhabitants of the globe. isville. On my journey to Pitts. Now if we consider these astonish
ing and rapid ameliorations, what hundred to a thousand fathoms. ideas must we not form of the The islands that are to be met with height of prosperity to which the in its current are very numerous. western country is rising, and of We counted upwards of fifty in the recent spring that the com- the space of three hundred and merce, population, and culture of eighty miles. Some contain but the country is taking, by uniting a few acres, and others more than Louisiana to the American terri- a thousand in length. Their banks tory.” P. 63–65.
are very low, and must be subject
to inundations. These islands are When it is recollected, that the a great impediment to the naviga. distance from Pittsburgh to New tion in the summer. The sands Orleans exceeds 2,000 miles, and that the river drives up, form, at that the Ohio, before its junction the head of some of them, a numwith the Mississippi, runs through ber of little shoals ; and in this half this space, what must our season of the year the channel is ideas be in contemplating vessels so narrow, from the want of water, of more than 200 tons seeking the that the few boats, even of a midocean through such devious tracts, dling size, that venture to go down, and in so extensive a course! Let are frequently run aground, and it us improve our acquaintance with is with great difficulty that they the means by which this inter- are got afloat ; notwithstanding course is facilitated :
which there is at all times a suf
ficiency of water for a skiff or a « The Ohio, formed by the u
As these little boats are nion of the Monongahela and Al- very light, when they strike upon leghany rivers, appears to be rath- the sands it is very easy to push er a continuance of the former them off into a deeper part. In than the latter, which only happens consequence of this it is only in obliquely at the conflux. The O. the spring and autumn that the hio may be at Pittsburgh two hun. Ohio is navigable, at least as far as dred fathoms broad. The current Limestone, about one hundred and of this immense and magnificent twenty miles fromPittsburg. Durriver inclines at first north-west ing these two seasons the water for about twenty miles, then bends rises to such a height, that vessels gradually west south-west. It fol- of three hundred tons, piloted by lows that direction for about the men who are acquainted with the space of five hundred miles; turns river, may go down in the greatest thence south-west a hundred and safety. The spring season begins sixty miles ; then west two hun- at the end of February, and lasts dred and seventy-five ; at length three months ; the autumn begins runs into the Mississippi,in a south- in October, and only lasts till the westerly direction, in the latitude first of December. In the meanof 36° 46", about eleven hundred time these two epochs fall sooner miles from Pittsburgh, and nearly or later, as the winter is more or the same distance from Orleans. less rainy,or the rivers are a shorter This river runs so extremely ser- or a longer time thawing. Again, pentine, that, in going down it, you it so happens, that in the course appear following a tract directly of the summer, heavy and incesopposite to the one you mean to sant rains fall in the Alleghany yake. Its breadth varies from two mountains, which suddenly swell
the Ohio : at that time persons excessively mountainous, covered may go down it with the greatest with forests, and almost uninhabsafety ; but such circumstances ited ; where, I have been told by are not always to be depended on.” those who live on the banks of the P. 68-70.
Ohio, they go every winter to hunt The Mississippi is interspersed bears.” P. 84. with numerous shoals and islands, so that its navigation is far more The flat woody ground between dangerous than that of the Ohio, the river and these mountains conat least from Natches to New Or- sists of a vegetable mould, from deleans, a course of more than 700 caying leaves, and even from the miles. The rapidity of the Ohio decayed trunks of trees. Thebest is very considerable, and rowing is land in Kentucky and Tennessee unnecessary. The appearance of is of the same kind, and its vegethe banks of the river, on leaving tative quality peculiarly strong. Pittsburgh, merits our attention : The plane-tree grows to an im
mense size ; and the next in bulk “ Leaving Pittsburgh, the Ohio is the liriodendron tulipifera. Othflows between two ridges, or lofty er trees, which adorn and diversify mountains, nearly of the same the forests of the country, are the height, which we judged to be beech, magnolia acuminata, the about two hundred fathoms. Fre- celtis occidentalis, the acacia, the quently they appeared undulated sugar and red maple, the black at their summit, at other times it poplar, &c. seemed as though they had been In this tract our author falls in completely level. These hills with towns, consisting of from 70 continue uninterruptedly for the to 200 houses, which till within a space of a mile or more, then a very few years had no existence, slight interval is observed, that and are generally placed on the sometimes affords a passage to the Ohio, or some of its tributary rivrivers that empty themselves into ers, where the receding mountains the Ohio ; but most commonly leave a vacant and level spot. Beanother hill of the same height low Marietta, a town on the Musk begins at a very short distance ingum, at its conflux with the ()from the place where the preceding hio, the mountains recede still farone left off. These mountains rise ther, and offer the following beausuccessively for the space of three tiful prospect : hundred miles, and from our canoe we were enabled to observe them « On the 23d of July, about ten more distinctly, as they were more in the morning, we discovered or less distant from the borders of Point Pleasant, situated a little the river. Their direction is par- above the mouth of the great Kenallel to the chain of the Allegha- hawa, at the extremity of a point nies ; and although they are at formed by the right bank of this times from forty to a hundred river, which runs nearly in a direct miles distant from them, and that live as far as the middle of the O. for an extent of two hundred miles, hio. What makes the situation one cannot help looking upon them more beautiful, is, that for four as belonging to these mountains. · or five miles on this side the point, All that part of Virginia, situated the Ohio, four hundred fathoms upon the left bank of the Ohio, is broad, continues the same breadth the whole of that extent, and pre- three or four miles, and travellers sents on every side the most per- are accommodated, in their misefect line. Its borders, sloping and rable log-houses, with bread, Ipelevated from twenty-five to forty dian corn, dried ham, milk and feet, are, as in the whole of its butter. They themselves feed windings, planted at their base with only on Indian corn : the wheat willows from fifteen to eighteen which is cultivated is exported in feet in '
height, the drooping bran- the form of flour. The peach and chies and foliage of which form a apple are their only fruit trees : pleasing contrast to the sugar ma
the former is preferred, as bogs ples, red maples, and ash trees, are fed, and brandy distilled from situated immediately above. The the fruit. The price of the best laiter, in return, are overlooked by land does not exceed 158. per acre. palms, poplars, beeches, magno The sellers are seldom constant in lias of the highest elevation, the their attachments, and few of those enormous branches of which, at- who first clear the ground, or who tracted by a more splendid fight immediately succeed them, reand easier expansion, extend to main on it. The same restless ward the borders, overshadowing principle urges them forward, and the river, at the same time com- the Americans have now penetrapletely covering the trees situated ted to the banks of the Missouri, under them. This natural display forty miles above its union with the which reigns upon the two banks, Mississippi. There are, it is said, affords on each side a regular arch, more than 3,000 inhabitants on its the shadow of which, reflected by banks, allured by a fertile soil, the the chrystal stream, embellishes, numerous herds of beavers, elks, in an extraordinary degree, this and bisons. magnificent coup d'ail." P.95,96. Our author leaves the banks of
the Ohio, to direct his course south The banks of the Ohio are allu- and south-west, towards Charlesvial, and, where not covered with ton. He stops in this journey at a - vegetable mould, are of a calcare- salt-mine. In this elevated region - ous nature. The stones are flinty, there are many strata of rock salt, -and chiefly from the separation of and salt springs often rise to the the limestone masses. A species surface, leaving, in consequence of mulette is chiefly employed in of the evaporation, a saline efllormaking buttons, as the pearly na- escence. To these spots, the ocre is very thick. It is arranged riginal inhabitants of the forest, the by Bosc under the genus Unio, wild beasts, usually repaired. Salt with the trivial name of Ohioten- seems to numerous animals a consis. Tbe tyrant of the river is the diment almost essential to their cat fish, silurus felis : its upper existence ; and we find, in these fins are strong and pointed, and, spots, the remains of some speby swimming under his prey, he cies at present unknown, probably is enabled to wound it where the extinct. The soil round these skin is thinnest. The inhabitants “ licks” is dry and sandy ; the of the banks are chiefly.hunters, stones are flat and chalky, rounded for the sake of the skins : a few at the edges, and of a biuish cast acres only are cultivated for their inside. The soil is barren, and COWS, whose milk they greatly de- the few trees thin and stinted. pend on. Plantations occur every Frankfort is the seat of govern