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come unto him, and feel an interest in their brotherly love, and in the sorrows of their mother, in the unwonted toils and troubles heroically borne by all,- let him at once close this volume. It is written by no congenial spirits, and I warn him that it will not contain any thing suited to his superior intellect."
As a reward for his frankness and confidence in the public, Mr. Beste now finds his book read with general interest; while many a writer who, shrouded in his impersonality, has carefully intrenched his dignity against the familiarity of his readers, finds himself and his lucubrations equally unnoticed and unknown.
The Wabash opens with a description of the family life at Talence, near Bourdeaux; but, in order to reach New York, it was found most convenient to sail from Havre. The traject was effected on board the Kate Hunter, with three hundred and sixty German emigrants. Landing with a large family and a great amount of luggage is in any country an unpleasing business. The first whom we encounter are the Irish, of whom we receive an unfavourable account:
“ Meanwhile I had received my first impression, which every subsequent week confirmed, that the Irish servants and porters (and none but Irish fill such offices in the hotels)—that such servants and porters were the nuisance of the United States. Despised by the Americans, themselves despising the blacks, with their bellies full for the first time in their lives, insolent in their looks, extortionate in their demands, oaths in their mouths, free from all restraint of neighbourhood or parish priest, beggars upon horseback, they ride full tilt to .. Enough for the present. I would commit them to their clergy and the treadmill.”
This last sentence, we must add, does its writer little credit. At Buffalo, however, a more pleasing trait is recorded :
“ I discovered that Buffalo was the seat of a bishop, and contained four English and Irish, one French, and two German Catholic churches. I made my way to St. Patrick's-then the largest church-though a magnificent cathedral was being raised near it. The building was crowded almost to suffocation. The congregation appeared very respectable; all were very clean and well-dressed. Yet I was told that almost all were Irish emigrants, escaped from starvation and forced idleness at home. I lingered about the door as the congregation went in and came out; yet amongst three thou. sand of Irish, not one asked for alms."
The river and the rail having conveyed our travellers from New York to Buffalo and the shores of Lake Erie, they visit the alls of Niagara and embark on a lake steamer, and landing at Sandusky city, proceed by railway to Cincinnati, a distance of four hundred and fifty-eight miles. The journey from Buffalo cost three dollars, or 12s.6d. a head, "state saloons, bride's-room, eating on board, and first-class railway—all included." The Americans are a locomotive race.
A propos to Cincinnati, we extract a passage from one of the young ladies' journals, containing a truth too much to be regretted:
««•It was with no feelings of regret that we quitted this very disagreeable place, and set off in the cars for Cincinnati, the queen city of the west, and one of the few towns in the United States of America which English people know, or care to know, any thing about. Indeed, since our return to the “old country," I have been surprised and disappointed at the utter want of interest displayed by our country people on the subject of America. They seem to consider North America as a great desert, in which there are five or six large towns, such as New York, Cincinnati, Philadelphia, Boston, and Baltimore. As to South America, it is another large desert, peopled with parrots and monkeys, and containing silvermines
Of the government and constitution of the country, every state of which is as large as all England and Scotland, and has independent laws and a president of its own—of all this they know nothing-it is Hebrew to them.'"
Even concerning Cincinnati we question if many of our readers were aware of the facts, that its population in 1850 was 116,000; that it has eleven daily and twenty-five weekly newspapers; sixty churches, of which twelve are Čatholic; and that during the season of twelve weeks four hundred thousand hogs are slaughtered and packed for exportation.
“ The Jesuits have a large establishment at Cincinnati. St. Xavier's College is under their direction, and gives education in the classics, modern languages, chemistry, and natural history, to about two hundred and fifty students, including boarders and day-scholars. I heard a very good account of the establishment, though I had afterwards reason to believe that the influx of day-scholars of every religion and class in the town, and whose numbers equal those of the regular boarders, acts prejudicially upon the Catholic youth, who would wish to pursụe their education more steadily and quietly. But in this country the education of all the first classes of Protestants seems to be intrusted to the Catholic priests and nuns. The lads are sent to Jesuit and other colleges, the girls to convents. The parents say that their children are better taught and better looked after than they would be in any other schools: the teachers say that they do not interfere with the religious opinions of the nonCatholic pupils; and that, without such indiscriminate admission of all, they would not be able to support their establishments. Threefourths of the boarders in many convents are Protestants.
“ The Protestant parents who gave me these accounts of the mode in which their children were being educated, generally interrupted the conversation to laugh at the English parliament, which was then expending a whole session in passing what it called the * Ecclesiastical Titles Bill,'. as if, said the Americans, it could matter to the state by what unrecognised names any number of citizens pleased to call themselves! The creation of a Cardinal Archbishop, they said, was a compliment to England, as they themselves were well pleased that Bishop Purcell had just been made Archbishop of Cincinnati; and they were inclined to join with American Catholics in considering that Rome slighted their country by not giving them an American cardinal.”
Steaming down the Ohio to Maddison, and there taking the railway to Indianapolis, our travellers had so far sped successfully; and beyond the inconveniences of insolent porters, one or two attempted extortions, and the desertion of emigrants when engaged as servants, there had been little to complain of.
But at Indianapolis the tide turns. Public conveyances are not forthcoming, and the travels of the family are continued in a purchased waggon, drawn by two spirited steeds and driven by the author.
Inns closed, and the owners fled from cholera ; inns kept by henpecked Irishmen, where beds and food have to be prayed and coaxed for from ill-tempered landladies; inns where a pie-dish and a towel are unwillingly conceded for washing, and breakfast peremptorily refused, --are features of the journey. Inns which are not inns, but to which the owners give that character in self-defence, lest they should be ruined by unlimited hospitality, which they would not withhold; inns kept by medical practitioners driving in their own cows, and themselves stabling their guests' horses, on account of the impossibility of keeping either men or women servants, -announce that we have entered a new world.
At Terre Haute, or Terry Hauty, as the natives call it, a rising town of 4000 inhabitants upon the river Wabash, the progress of the travellers is finally arrested. The father of the family and one of his sons are stricken with dangerous illness, and one fair child, a model of piety and patience, finds her last resting-place in an American grave-yard.
This six-weeks residence at Terre Haute, which occupies more than half the second volume, is the most interesting portion of the book; and it is impossible to read those scenes of family distress and truthful pictures of privation and suffering without lively sympathy.
For characteristic details of manners, and minute touches, which bring out fully the life and entourage of the dwellers in those districts, nothing better could be given. The
reader rises with the impression that he has been there himself, and has lived through the incidents so graphically described.
The return to Lake Erie is effected by the Wabash Canal, the property of English shareholders, to whom the men of Indiana made it over in lieu of their state bonds. That the canal was a difficult property to manage, and scarcely paid its own expenses, seemed to increase the pride of the men of Indiana, when contrasting their honourable conduct with that of the Pennsylvanian repudiators. Their assignment of the canal was a proof of their honesty; the worthlessness of the property assigned only established their reputation for smartness.
Having consigned three of his sons to the care of the Archbishop of Cincinnati for college education, Mr. Beste visits the great American lakes and the springs of Saratoga ; and the book concludes with the voyage from New York to Liverpool, after chronicling the events of some four-months travel.
The general result of the narrative is, we think, to raise our estimate of American men, but also (alas that it should be so !) to qualify very materially our preconceived notions in favour of American women. On their conceit and affectation the author passes a sweeping censure :
“Frank,' he says, speaking of one of his own boys, and quoting from his daughter's journal, was half an American already, writes Agnes; and was highly delighted with the idea of settling there. He declared that no sitting posture was so comfortable as swinging and balancing himself on the back legs of his chair, with his feet out of the window : and I have no doubt he would have enjoyed smoking and other American accomplishments. The next most comfortable posture of all was to sit with his feet on the table; or sideways in an arm-chair with his feet thrown over the arm and resting on the back of another chair. These dispositions and positions of his were admired and encouraged by no one so much as by a certain young lady who had picked him out for conquest. Though she was only twelve years old, she was already fully initiated in the arts of flirting and coquetting, and exercised them very desperately. Her first step was to make him cultivate a taste for Burgundy pitch, in which she at last succeeded.
. During our first walk with her and another friend of hers, the young ladies were constantly chewing something, which I afterwards discovered to have been Burgundy pitch. It was always in the mouth of these two rather elegant girls, who danced and played the piano and sang very well. They, more than once, offered me some of the tempting substance; but thanking them, I politely declined their offer; and excused myself by saying that it was not yet
the custom for European ladies to chew either tobacco or pitch. However, all the young ladies at Terre Haute, and, I suppose, all over America, chew Burgundy pitch, as the gentlemen chew tobacco. When the heat of the day was over, that is between eight and nine o'clock, we used often to go over to her house for half an hour. Her mamma would then ask her to sing and play on the piano; but she had never any voice until Frank added his entreaties.'
• One day,' writes Louie, ' Agnes and I were in a room, when she tapped at the door, and entered in rather an agitated state.
Oh, dear l' she said, turned to Agnes and throwing herself down on the nearest chair, do you know whom I saw as I came along ?'
“At that moment, Agnes was called away, and she and I were left tête-à-tête.
• Well, whom did you see?” I asked. 'Oh!-why-I saw somebody,'—' So I presume,' I replied coolly; for I did not admire the young lady's affected manner. Dear! can't you guess ?' asked she, covering her face with her pocket handkerchief. Indeed I do not know whom you mean.' Well, now, I guess you do know; and you only say that to tease me!' 'If you do not like to tell me, I will not ask you any more about it.'
“ After talking about other things for a little while, she drew a little paper packet from her pocket, and, opening it, showed me a book-marker, worked on cardboard, but very much prettier than one she had given Agnes the day before.
Guess whom it is for ?' said she 'I have tried guessing enough for to-day; so you had better tell me,' I replied, smiling: my idea, from her manner, was that she intended it as a present to me; but, of course, I could not hazard such a guess. I'll tell you,' said she, lowering her voice to a whisper; 'it's intended for your brother Frank; but I saw him at the window as I was coming here, and it gave me such a turn,' she continued, sinking back in her chair, and I don't quite like to give it him.'
“ A few days after, Frank held up his present to us in triumph.
“ I quote these childish reminiscences because they appear to me characteristic of American women. The family of the young lady will laugh, as we all then did, at the remembrance of the flirtations of a boy and girl of fourteen and twelve years
But will any American deny that the manners of the little lady gave evidence that she would grow up all that the fondest father or husband could wish her to be? Was there not evidence of all the incipient conceit and affectation which Americans think so charming in their women ? Whether it take the tone of sentimentality or indifference, the affectation is always there. The nasal whine, which Englishmen feel to be so revolting, is, I really believe, in great part, affected; the most commonplace observations are thought to be rendered touching and full of meaning when drawled forth at the rate of five words an hour in that languidly-sentimental or rigidlyprecise twang. I have remarked on the excessive politeness of all American men to all females, whether in the saloons of steamers or