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by the pestilential influence of so great an amount of moral depravity in our infant country.

Still it may be asked whether facts warrant the beleif that the scale is fairly turned in favor of science, piety and civilization-whether in regard to these important endowments of our nature, the present time is better than the past-whether we may safely consider our political institutions so matured and settled that our personal liberty, property and sacred honor, are not only secured to us for the present, but likely to remain the inheritance of our children for generations yet to come. Society, in its best state, resembles the sleepping volcano, as to the amount of latent moral evil which it always contains. It is enough for public safety, and all that can reasonably be expected, that the good predominate over the evil. The moral and political means, which have been so successfully employed for preventing a revolutionary explosion, have, as we trust, procrastinated the danger of such an event for a long time to come. If we have criminals, they are speedily pursued and brought to justice.

The places of our country, which still remain in their native state of wilderness, do not, as in many other countries, afford notorious lodg. ments for thieves. Our hills are not, as in the wilderness of Judea, "hills of robbers." The ministry of the holy gospel is enlightening the minds of our people with the best of all sciences, that of God himself, his divine government and man's future state.

Let it not be thought hard that our forums of justice are so numerous, the style of their architecture so imposing, and the business which occupies them so multifarious; they are the price which freedom must pay for its protection. Commerce, circulating through its million channels, will create an endless variety of litigated claims. Crimes of the deepest dye, springing from science and liberty themselves, require constantly the vigilance and coercion of criminal justice. Even the poorest of our people are solicitous for the education of their children. Thus the great supports of our moral and political state, resting on their fimest bases, public opinion and attachment to our government and laws, promise stability for generations yet to come.




"THE author of the History of the Valley had intended to postpone the subject of the following pages, and give the subject matter thereof in a second edition; but at the request of a highly respectable subscriber, and on consulting the printer, it is found that this addition to his work will not greatly increase the expense of the present volume.

It is therefore deemed expedient to gratify public curiosity by giving the following sketches. If any one should be found incredulous enough to doubt the correctness of his statements, he can only say to such individuals, that they can have occular proof of the truth of each by taking the trouble to examine for themselves.


That portion of the Valley lying between the Blue Ridge and Little North Mountain, is generally about an average of twenty-five miles wide, commencing at the Cohongoruton (Potomac,) and running from thence a southerly course to the commencement of the northern termination of Powell's Fort mountains, a distance of about forty-five miles.

This region, it has already been stated in a preceding chapter, when the country was first known to the white people, was one entire and beautiful prairie, with the exception of narrow fringes of timber immediately bordering on the water courses. The Opequon, (pronounced Opeckon) heads at the eastern base of the Little North Mountain, and thence passing through a fine tract of limestone country seven or eight miles, enters into a region of slate. This tract of slate country commences at the northern termination of Powell's Fort mountains, and is six or eight miles in width east and west, and continues to the Potomac a distance of about forty-five miles. The Opequon continues its serpentine course through the slate region, and empties into the Potomac about fifteen or sixteen miles above Harpers-Ferry. It is thought by some inindividuals that this water course is susceptible of navigation for small craft, twenty-four or twenty-five miles from its mouth. This slate region of country is comparatively poor, unproductive land; yet in the hands of industrious and skilful farmers, many very valuable and beautiful farms are to be seen in it. About twenty years ago a scientific Frenchinan suggested to the author the opinion that this region of slate country

was, at some remote period of the world, covered with a mountain, an abrasion of which had taken place by some great convulsion of nature.This he inferred from an examination of the base of the Fort Mountainthe stratum of the slate at the foot of which being precisely similar to that of the slate at the edges of the region of this slate country." The author will not venture an opinion of his own on this subject, but has given that of an individual who it was said at the time was a man of considerable philosophical and scientific acquirements.

East of this slate country commences another region of fine limestone land, averaging ten or twelve miles in width, and for its extent certainly unsurpassed in point of natural beauty, fertility and value, by any section of country in Virginia.


Powell's Fort presents to the eye much gradeur and sublimity. dition informs us that an Englishman by the name of Powell, at the early settlement of our country, discovered silver ore in the West Fort Mountain, and commenced the business of money coining; and when any attempts were made to arrest him, he would escape into the mountain and conceal himself. From this circumstance it acquired the name of Powell's Fort. The late Capt. Isaac Bowman, about thirty years ago, pointed out to the author the site of Powell's shop, where it was said he wrought his metal, the ruins of which were then to be seen. Capt. Bowman also informed the author that several crucibles and other instruments, which he had frequently seen, had been found about the ruins of this shop, so that there is no doubt of the truth of the tradition that this man Powell was in the practice of melting down some sort of metal, if he did not actually counterfeit money.

The grandeur and sublimity of this extraordinary work of nature consist in its tremendous height and singular formation. On entering the mouth of the Fort, we are struck with the awful height of the mountains on each side, probably not less than a thousand feet. Through a very narrow passage, a bold and beautiful stream of water rushes, called Passage creek, which a short distance below works several fine merchant mills.After travelling two or three miles, the valley gradually widens, and for upwards of twenty miles furnishes arable land, and affords settlements for eighty or ninety families, several of whom own very valuable farms.— The two mountains run parallel about twenty-four or twenty-five miles, and are called the East and West Fort mountains, and then are merged into one, anciently called Masinetto, now Masinatton mountain. The Masinutton mountain continues its course about thirty-five or thirty-six miles southerly, and abruptly terminates nearly opposite Keisletown, in the county of Rockingham. This range of mountains divides the two great branches of the Shenandoah river, called the South and North forks. This mountain, upon the whole, presents to the eye something of the shape of the letter Y, or perhaps more the shape of the hours and tongue of a wagon.

The turnpike road from New-Market, crossing Masinutton and Blue Ridge into the county of Culpeper, is held as private property. The dwelling-house where the toll is received stands on the summit of MasiButton, from which cach of the valleys of the North and South rivers

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