The Rural Magazine, and Literary Evening Fire-Side, Vol. 1 No. 09 (1820) by Various
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THE RURAL MAGAZINE, AND LITERARY EVENING FIRE-SIDE.
VOL. I. PHILADELPHIA, _Ninth Month_, 1820. _No. 9._
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
THE DESULTORY REMARKER. No. VIII.
Thou only know'st That dark meandering maze Where wayward Falsehood strays, And, seizing swift the lurking sprite, Forces her forth to shame and light
 Ode to Truth, from Mason's Caractacus.
Man has been in all ages and countries, in a greater or less degree, the victim of imposture and superstition. Their origin can every where be traced to rude and uncultivated periods of society; but subsequent stages of comparative elegance and refinement have also ministered to the support of their dominion. Egypt, Greece and Rome were successively the seats of learning and science; yet in these celebrated regions, the human mind was enveloped in darkness and loaded with chains. The Egyptians have this ancient proverb: "It is easier to find a deity than a man."--Apotheosis must have been carried to an extraordinary length indeed when this was the case. Among these deities, Isis was prominently distinguished, and universally worshipped. On her statues, these words were impudently inscribed: "I am all that has been, that shall be, and none among mortals has hitherto taken off my veil!" Who but would blush for the credulity which listened with reverential awe to the oracular responses at Delphi, a town situate in the neighbourhood of Mount Parnassus, believed by every one at that time to be the centre of the earth! And concerning this precious object, the wars denominated the "_sacred_ wars," were so furiously and destructively waged. The Grecians were compelled, under pain of death, rigidly to observe the mysteries of Eleusis; and the wisest of the Romans were seen consulting the flight of birds and the entrails of animals, for infallible prognostics of future events. Where the footsteps of _true_ philosophy can be traced, her triumphs have been signal; and having found most of these and many other errors exploded, we lay claim in this enlightened age and country, to an extraordinary exemption from the influence of imposture and superstition. Although the darkness and gloom of former ages have in a great degree fled at the approach of the light of knowledge, still here and there the skirts of a black cloud remain, to indicate the failure of an absolute conquest. And the presence of these potent adversaries of human happiness, should inculcate the duty on every friend of his species of lending his aid in advancing the cause of TRUTH.
Among the reprehensible customs which now obtain in the United States, none are more affrontful to the good sense of the community, and few more pernicious in their effects on youth and inexperience, than LOTTERIES, and the disgusting advertisements connected with them, which daily appear in the public journals. The funds which constitute a lottery, are principally derived from the pockets of those whose straitened circumstances, prompt them to grasp at the glittering phantoms, paraded before their eyes by professional jugglers.--Their minds become unsettled; a love of idleness and extravagance is excited; and their attention diverted from the true sources of prosperity--industry, frugality and sound morals. This cautionary advice may be deduced from the best and brightest of books; "Make not haste to be rich." Experience and observation unite in confirming its wisdom. We need but contemplate the consequences, which have almost universally resulted to those who have been so _fortunate_ as to draw large prizes! Nine times perhaps out of ten, bankruptcy and ruin have trodden close on the heels of the dissipation and thoughtlessness they have occasioned. Lotteries are made by legislation, (which ought to be much better employed,) a species of legalized gambling, altogether destitute, in every point of view, of the slightest recommendation, to the countenance and patronage of the public. Being thus prejudicial to individual and social happiness, is it not to be lamented, that respectable editors instead of branding it as they ought, with its proper characteristics; should, to augment the profits of their papers, give to this system of deception, the widest circulation, among all classes of readers. These gentlemen should remember, that pecuniary sacrifices should sometimes be made at the shrine of virtue.
 Proverbs ch. xxviii. 22d verse.
Another source of imposture may be traced to the venders of QUACK MEDICINES. Few persons are, perhaps, aware of the amount of this tax, levied by unprincipled charlatans, on the afflicted and credulous portion of the community. But it is not their money only that is sacrificed, but frequently their constitutions and their lives. He, whose constant companions have long been Pain and Disease, is easily persuaded to listen to the confident promises of impudent pretenders to medical science. He indulges the flattering but false anticipation of returning health, until his symptoms assume an incurable character, and nature gives him the "signal for retreat." It is not to be expected, that for all the multiform shapes which vice is constantly assuming, remedies can be furnished by statutory provision. For many evils, and some of them of a positively mischievous character, no other cure can be relied on with certainty, than the virtue and intelligence of the public. In proportion as these shall be cultivated, will be the augmentation of social enjoyment, and the increasing splendour of the orb of truth.
It has been observed by an eminent writer, that although all argument is against the existence of GHOSTS, all opinion is in its favour.--The celebrated JOHN WESLEY, it is said, believed in them; and EDWARD CAVE asserted confidently, though he avoided dwelling on the subject, that he had himself seen an apparition.--The story of Mrs. VEAL, prefixed to Drelincourt on Death, though not conclusive, tended to strengthen such opinions. Few of those who held them, were countenanced by stronger evidence than that detailed in the following authentic narrative. In the earlier periods of the settlement of Pennsylvania, public houses of entertainment were few and distant from each other. A farmer, who resided in Montgomery then Philadelphia county, was returning from market at a late hour, of a cold winter night. As he was passing a meeting house, he discovered through the interstices of the door, a light which proceeded from a fire-place; there having been public worship held there during the preceding day. Having dismounted and hitched his horse, he proceeded to the door, and having opened it, beheld a large fire burning, a man laying before it, and between this mysterious personage and the door, a coffin! He instinctively shrunk back, as the time, the place, and the circumstances he witnessed, were well calculated to produce considerable excitement.--Summoning his resolution, however, he advanced to the fire-place, where he found a person asleep, and a new coffin along side of him. The man informed him, that being a joiner, he was employed to make a coffin for a relation who died a few miles above, and that he was taking it up from Germantown where he resided. It appeared that they had both turned in with the same object, to warm themselves; and the honest farmer was pleased to find the spectral apparition subside into a sober reality. How fortunate would it be if on all occasions, investigation were equally honest and determined. Then, indeed, would error and falsehood frequently be forced to "SHAME AND LIGHT." ☞
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
THE VILLAGE TEACHER.
My favourite occupation between school hours, during the Spring and Summer, is GARDENING. The munificence of some village Lorenzo has bequeathed, for the use of the schoolmaster, several acres of ground, well situated for tillage or ornamental purposes. Since I have been the incumbent, I have taken much pains to improve it by surrounding the chief part with hedges of cedar and thorn, and planting a good selection of fruit and forest trees. The lower part of the field is in grass, and a winding gravel walk leads from one group of trees to another. Here, according to their various tastes and habits, may be seen the magnolias of our own and the southern states, the walnut, the locust, the elm, the tulip tree, and the different varieties of pine, and larch, and fir, which it has been my study to arrange so as to diversify the view, and exhibit as much as my slender means would allow, the great families into which the vegetable kingdom is divided. A brook as clear as crystal babbles along through an adjoining lot, and enters mine towards the lower end. I have conducted it to a natural hollow in the ground, and have thus, at a trifling expense, formed a fish-pond, which adds greatly to the beauty of my little domain, and furnishes me not only with wholesome food for my own and my friends' tables, but is well suited, from the natural moisture of its banks, for the cultivation of many of our beautiful ferns and aquatic plants. The middle of the lot I have planted with the various fruit trees in which our climate is so rich, if, indeed, it may not challenge a competition in this respect with the world. The upper and smaller portion of the lot, I have appropriated to what is called gardening in the stricter sense of the word. In marking out the walks, I have endeavoured to follow, as nearly as I could, what the painters, perhaps a little fantastically, call the line of beauty, so as to have but few sharp corners or square beds. At the prominent angles and the centres of the beds, are planted the Rhododendron; the two Kalmias; the scarlet, the tri-coloured and the flowering Azaleas; the Clethra and the Philadelphus, mingling with the most beautiful of the domesticated foreign shrubbery--the different Roses, Honeysuckles, and Jessamines. Underneath, and among this shrubbery, are seen the blue and scarlet Lobelias, the native Lily, the Gerardia, the Arethusa, the Orchis, the Bartsia, the Epigea, and all those beautiful flowers that spring up in our woods and meadows, and so frequently bloom and die unseen or unappropriated. These native flowers make a fine show and not an unfavourable comparison even with those beauties of Europe and the East that I have been able to collect and arrange by their side.
I have been thus particular and egotistical in describing my garden, perhaps from vanity, but partly from a wish that the plan may be followed. Our native shrubbery and flowers are not surpassed in beauty and splendour by those of any region in the temperate zone, and many of them in magnificence of foliage and colours are truly tropical. They are sought for abroad with great eagerness, and form an indispensable part of every gentleman's collection. I wish it were more the custom for our farmers and cottagers to domesticate them in their gardens and around their houses.--They improve materially by cultivation, and new varieties are frequently formed. What can be a more beautiful ornament to the front of a farm-house, or a neat white-washed cottage, than a Sweet-briar, winding between the windows and over the door? or the Carolina Passion flower, the Alleghany Vine, the Clematis, or the scarlet Trumpet flower? These rural decorations add more than one would imagine, who had not tried them, to the innocent pleasures of a family; they have no small influence in forming the taste of children; they form a favourite retreat for the birds; and they fling over the whole country an air of peace, and contentment, and innocent enjoyment, which no one, who has not travelled in the more beautiful and retired parts of England, can fully appreciate.
I recollect once in riding through the valley of Chester county with some foreign gentlemen, that they were struck with the nakedness and rudeness of the farm-houses. It appeared to them the most beautiful region they had ever seen, and they exclaimed, with one voice, that the inhabitants did not seem worthy of possessing it. On the side of some sloping hill and in front of a lawn as smooth as velvet, or laden with the riches of the harvest, would be seen a barn and a house that looked as if the master and horse had changed lodgings, both of rude unhewn stone, without a single tree, or shrub, or a trailing vine, for shade or ornament. Such an insensibility to the beauties of rural decoration, in a region where every thing seems calculated to call out and quicken the taste, is unnatural, and can only arise from sordid habits or ignorance.
If these hasty remarks should call the attention of our farmers to the subject, and induce them to devote some of their leisure hours to the ornamenting of their grounds, I shall be richly rewarded; and I can promise to them also a rich reward.--Their houses will be more cool and healthful, and they will find that by encouraging in their children a taste for gardening, and for observing the native beauties of our forests, their fondness for the innocent pleasures of home and for reading will be increased, together with that unambitious ease and industry which form the distinguishing traits in the character of a virtuous peasantry.
I began this paper with a design to eulogise the art of gardening, and investigate its effects on the mind. I have been diverted, however, from my purpose, and must, in a future number, resume the disquisition.
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
THE AFRICAN PEOPLE.
It does not appear that sufficient consideration is given to the case of those black people, who have been rendered free by or under the laws of the states and old provinces, from the earliest period. We have established in the city and county of Philadelphia, in Pennsylvania, _a system professing to be for the universal education of the poor_, at the public expense, to which the black people, by the taxes upon their real property, consumption taxes, and all the taxes of the whites (except the little personal or occupation tax,) actually contribute. It cannot be denied, that many of them are as truly among the poor, as the most and least poor of the white heads of families, whose children are admitted to this _constitutional_ and legal provision. The blacks also pay all the consumption duties on imported foreign articles, so far as they consume them.
We ought to consider the very low state of the proper blacks in Africa, where their uncivilized condition has long been most unhappily made worse by the neighbourhood of the four Saracen or Moorish piratical States of Barbary, devoted to military plunder, the slavery of the whites and blacks, and the imposter superstitions of Mahomet, sacrilegiously pretending to add himself to the Almighty in the government of his church and his earth. Besides these, the slave dealers of the world have resorted to the African ports and islands, and have combined with powerful, avaricious, and inhuman princes and dealers, in that country, to make out a course of slave traffic with every nation, in whose system of industry African slaves are more profitable and efficient than white labourers. From the islands of Bourbon, Mauritius and Madagascar, round by the Cape of Good Hope and up to the Saracen or Moorish kingdom of Morocco, this system has long prevailed. It is unhappily true, that the great collection of proper Negro districts of Africa, remain now in the darkest state of irreligion, immorality and incivilization. It is also true, that this is so rooted in their system, that the actual transfer, since the year 1620, of a number of Africans to this country now amounting, with their descendants, to about one million and a half of the unmixed and mixed breeds, is to be considered as _a great and complicated dispensation of Divine Providence_, drawing that numerous people into the bosom and body of an enlightened nation, averse to the traffic, from the date of the _first_ act of Virginia of 1778, _abolishing the slave trade_, to the present consummation of that prohibition, under the laws of the Union. We have gone, _first_ in Pennsylvania, one step further by our act of 1780, which, while it unhappily recognized _the slavery of all the living_, instead of emancipating three or four thousand at the public expense, or at the expense of the holders, confined its operation to establishing the freedom of those who should be _thereafter_ born of the slaves held and continuing to be held among us.
In order, so far as in us lies, humbly to justify and bless the dispensation of Providence, which has drawn these people out of the gloomy abyss of the human family in the vast African black-peopled district, stained as it unhappily partially is even by the awful cannibal practice, and by human sacrifices, let us, of Pennsylvania, who have been first to make their native American _posterity_ free, be the most distinguished, _in justice to their submissive and patient early labours in forming our fair old province_, in dispensing to them the benefits of that religious, moral, scholastic and professional education, without which they cannot live in the good hopes of this their earthly residence or of the world beyond the grave.--It is well understood, that our city and county school system is not practically and effectually extended to the poor black people. An appeal is respectfully made to the friends of religion, morals, useful knowledge, and general industry, whether we ought not to dispense to them a more generous, just and civilized freedom. If we mean to avoid arguments against the gradual and ultimate abolition of slavery, let us endeavour to instruct them in all those things, which will enable them to labour with advantage, to get their own living in the progressive station on this continent, to which it has pleased God to suffer them to be transferred. To the black people themselves, it is proper to recommend a very modest and good conduct in all things, without which _they_ cannot succeed, nor can the endeavours of _their best friends_ be availing and effectual.
_A Friend of all the Poor._
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
The invention of new instruments and machines is among the noblest exertions of the human faculties. It is said to be considered by some philosophers as the most striking distinguishing character between our species and the brute creation, that man is a _tool-making_ animal. He is certainly the only one who selects his instruments with care and adapts them to his purposes, by altering their shape and structure. At any rate, the temporal advantages which we possess over the beasts, are universally, perhaps, obtained through this medium. As this is the case, one might suppose that they who invent and improve these engines of superiority, would receive the homage of their fellow men to their talents and thanks for their benefit to the human race. Why, then, what is called Gimcrackery should fall into disrepute, is an inquiry of some curiosity.
We cannot well deny the truth of the very common remark, that inventors are very apt to fail of realizing, by their ingenuity, a solid provision for life; nor can we well avoid concluding, that of the many contrivances daily offered to the public, that the probability of any one becoming permanently useful is very small indeed. When we consider, however, that the great mass of these inventions are designed for the attainment of wealth, and that such an amount of skill and ingenuity are employed, the above conclusions cannot fail to appear singular. One would think inventors could not, with these acknowledged talents, well fail of at least securing their own independence, although their schemes may not be profitable to others. If, however, we analyse the motives by which such persons are guided, we shall find, I think, some explanation.
There are few if any men who are not more or less influenced by a desire of some species of fame or distinction, although, in many of the common situations of life, this does not interfere with the pursuit of wealth, and only shows itself in moments of relaxation from the toils of necessity. For one who wishes to signalize himself in his trade or profession, and who is swayed by that desire as a ruling passion, there are probably many who seek to gratify their pride, by the pursuit of eminence in other things. People aim at distinction in conversational wit, in politics, philosophy or even drinking or gaming; while the hours devoted to business are guided by the wish for property alone, undisturbed by the love of fame. In the persons of whom we are speaking, this feeling, inseparable from the nature of man, has a powerful influence on their serious business. They are not to get wealth only, but distinction, by their talents; and I question much whether they are not more under the influence of a wish for the latter than the former. Praise is most generally, at least in this instance, gained by a single exertion, and by the study of a short time. The invention once made, and its applicability rendered plausible, all further contemplation of the subject is accompanied by an exulting hope that fills and occupies the mind. But applying either inventions or any other means to the common business of life, is a more monotonous, common-place labour, that affords no high and exhilarating excitement to persevere. The consequence too often is that the inventor quits one hopeful scheme before it is half reduced to practice, to fly to something still more new; showing by this that he is fonder of the act of inventing than of making money by the results. Of this preference of fame to wealth, a striking instance is often afforded by those illiterate persons who follow this pursuit. These often voluntarily abstain from studying the scientific labours of their predecessors, of which I have known instances, in order to preserve the originality of their projects, though frequently at the expense of their perfection and utility. If, then, the larger portion of the labour of these men is devoted to the attainment of celebrity, they can hardly quarrel with results of their own making, nor expect fortune to come to their hands unsought.
Persons who wish to acquire wealth, or, in fact, to achieve any permanent end, are generally obliged to use steady perseverance, and to apply all the talents they are masters of for a length of time. Precisely the same is the case with inventors. That inventor meets with very extraordinary success indeed, who is not obliged, in the application of his plans to a useful purpose, to employ prudence and economy, and all those qualities which enable a man to conduct business to advantage and to influence the minds of others. Hence it is that inventions so often lie for a length of years, forgotten or neglected, till some one of less originality, but more perseverence, influence and mercantile calculation, carries them into effect with advantage.
The want of being acquainted with the efforts and discoveries of predecessors is the cause of prodigious waste of time and talent. Hence the thousand schemes for perpetual motion, and a variety of other attempts scarce less extravagant, because made with equal ignorance. And, in fact, there is a strong tendency in having acquired the knowledge of the labours of others, to clip the wings of invention, and render men of learning much less apt to attempt novelties than while they knew less.
Extravagance in pecuniary matters is another frequent cause of the ruin of ingenious artists and of those who trust in them. This is shown, both in imprudently investing considerable sums of money without a reasonable probability of a return, and in the general lavish style in which such men often live and experiment.
In fact, to turn inventions to advantage, requires the singling out of one good, feasible plan, mercantile prudence in calculating probabilities, and mercantile economy in the conduct of the business, together with perseverence enough to prevent marring one scheme by prematurely beginning another. These qualities are so rarely found in combination with mechanical originality, or, indeed with that restless versatility which keeps men on the search for its productions, that it will perhaps always continue to be generally the case; that one man shall invent and persuade another to make experimental trials, but a third, and one totally unconnected with either, if any one, shall reap the increase.
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
THE PRODUCTIONS OF THE EARTH.
No subject can more deeply interest the planters and farmers of this country. Our merchants can export every American production without duty, tax or impediment. We have all the benefits of a foreign, coasting, and interior trade, free as to our own laws, and the national government are constantly engaged in negotiations and regulations calculated to soften or remove the inconveniences of foreign monopolies in commerce and navigation. Such measures are pending now with Britain and France.
When trade has exhausted its power to find a profitable market, abroad or at home, the conversion of our unsaleable surplus produce into new forms, commonly denominated _domestic manufactures_, becomes an object of reasonable consideration. It is well known, that the cultivated soil and the bowels of the earth give us the following principal objects as the fruits of the culture of the land, or as its spontaneous productions. 1, Hemp; 2, Flax; 3, Wool; 4, Iron; 5, Silk; 6, Hides and Skins; 7, Sugar; 8, Indigo, Woad, Madder; 9, Grass; 10, Grain; 11, Wood; 12, Tobacco, and 13, Cotton. Such has long been the unforced state of our manufacturing industry, that in 1797, in 1810, and in 1819, we did not export any surplus or quantity, however small, of the first eight of those valuable productions. Our manufacturers, without the war or double, or present duties, bought at home and worked up the whole. The returns of exports prove, that we did not ship any part of several of those articles, and if we shipped a little of some, we imported a greater weight and value of the same kinds of foreign produce or raw materials.
Of the 9th article, Grass or Hay, we shipped very little, screwed into compact bundles for the West Indies.
Of the 10th, Grain, with some Fruit and Molasses, we have a brewery and distillery, a cider and general liquor manufacture, equal to forty millions of gallons, and requiring a quantity of produce equal to the value of sixteen millions of bushels of grain, of which above seven-eighth parts are drawn from our own lands. This is equal to the value of seven millions of barrels of flour, and we did not ship to foreign countries, in 1819, more than 750,000 barrels. It is plain, that the liquor manufactories of the United States (to which we are adding wine, worth to France 100,000,000 dollars,) are a very principal support of our agriculture.--We also make of grain, quantities of starch, hair-powder, sizing, paste, ship bread, wafers and vermicelli, hominy, firmity, soft bread, pastry and other preparations of grain. It is converted into fatted cattle, hogs and poultry. Ingenuity is and should be on the stretch to employ and profitably consume grain. Pork and beef maintain better prices abroad than the grain (or meal thereof,) with which we feed cattle and hogs. The prohibition of spirits, and the distillation of molasses, in St. Domingo, will cut off our supply of molasses.
Of the 11th article, Wood, we have now one manufacture (our sea vessels, coasters, river and other boats,) worth 40 or 50 millions of dollars. We manufacture, for exportation, from 120 to 180 millions of staves, heading, hoops, boards, scantling, plank, and we have an immense cooperage for foreign and domestic sale and use. Besides buildings, fences, cabinet ware, carriages, ploughs, harrows, handspikes, turnery, boxes, cases, faggots, cord-wood, &c. &c., to a vast amount, profiting the owners and clearers of wood lands.
12. Tobacco, of which we manufacture nearly all we consume, and fabricate as much for exportation, probably, as we import in a manufactured state for our consumption. We could manufacture a quantity of tobacco equal to the supply shipped by all Europe.
Of Cotton, we are supposed to manufacture 30,000,000 of pounds, shipping above three times that weight to foreign countries. We yearly increase in the goodness, fineness, utility, variety and value of our cotton manufactures. The looms of the United States were, in A. D. 1810, 325,000, of which North Carolina and Virginia, cotton and wool states, had the most, being each nearly 41,000 looms. The water and steam are well established, and work lower than the cheapest hand looms of Europe or Asia.
The plain instruction, of these genuine facts, to our planters and farmers, is, to encourage household manufactures, and all other manufactures on the estates, at the doors, in the townships, villages, and counties in which they live, consuming raw materials, building materials, food for man and beast, fuel, drinks, and other productions of the earth. This system of adjacent manufactures saves all the cost of transportation of our productions to the sea-ports, and the expense of carrying foreign goods from the sea-ports to the interior, more profitable than canals and turnpike roads.
Every judicious member of the agricultural body must be a friend to the freedom and encouragement of our foreign commerce, as affording a constant and sure market for a considerable portion of the productions of the earth. But, that manufactures afford also a very great and sure market for a larger variety, quantity and value of our landed productions, is no less manifest and certain. The nail mill, the paper mill, the screw mill, the brewery, the spinning and weaving mills, the calico printing mill, the pottery, and many other works and arts to fabricate useful necessary supplies out of our raw materials, will (including all our manufactures) be worth, in the whole of 1820, more than five times the value of our exported goods for sale in foreign countries. Let every farmer, planter, iron-master, &c., therefore, encourage manufactures in his household, on his estate, and in his neighbourhood, as the surest method of making a profitable home demand, without the expense of transportation, for the fruits of his labour, and the natural productions of his forests, mines and quarries. We purposely avoid to urge forcing and protecting duties, referring only to those existing, which have been ordained principally for the purpose of raising the requisite public revenue. We do not interfere in the agitation of the question about protecting duties. We believe the cheapness of produce and labour and improved machinery and labour-saving processes, will occasion manufactures to prosper and increase, and thus to support the growers of produce and the owners of the land, beyond even our free and valuable trade. To this, the duties laid for revenue, for defence, and for the encouragement of agriculture, will materially contribute; such as the impost upon East India cotton goods, of 27½ to 62½ and even 80 and 90 per cent., as made entirely of foreign cotton, rival to our cotton, flax, hemp, wool and silk.
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
EXTRACTED FROM THE MANUSCRIPT COLLECTIONS OF C. E.
_On the increase of the Domestic Sugar of the United States._
It would seem to be a great acquisition to our country, if we could produce from our own soil whatever sugar might be necessary for our own consumption, without having recourse to foreign Islands or nations; it will therefore be satisfactory, I apprehend, to all lovers of their country to find that we are already making rapid advances, as will appear to any person who attentively weighs the following items of information, collected at different times from our public newspapers; from whence it may be inferred, that before many years have expired a supply sufficient for our own use will be furnished within our own territories.
1812, January 10--Albert Gallatin, Esq. then Secretary of the Treasury, informed the Committee of Ways and Means, in a letter, that the Western States were then entirely supplied with salt of domestic produce; and that they consumed annually seven millions of pounds of sugar, made from the Sugar Maple tree, which, says he, is nearly all they use. Now, if in 1812 the _Western_ States produced 7,000,000 pounds of sugar from such trees, it is probable that in 1820, _they_ would produce not less than 10,000,000 in a year. If to this we add what is yielded in the states of Vermont, New York, and Pennsylvania, it seems likely that the whole amount of such sugar, now made annually in the United States, is not less than 15 millions of pounds.
By a publication in a late newspaper, it appears that there were exported from New Orleans, in six months preceding 1st May, 1820, 15,652 hogsheads of sugar; all this no doubt was of their own growth and produced from the Sugar Cane. I am informed by a dealer in sugar, that the sugar hogsheads of New Orleans do not average less than 1000 pounds to each hogshead, making, in six months, 15,652,000 pounds, and in the whole year probably 20,000,000 pounds; total of sugar from the Sugar tree and Cane, 35,000,000 pounds annually. This exhibits a very rapid increase in the amount of sugar made, as I think Secretary Gallatin, in an older communication, not 20 years ago, stated that New Orleans at that time exported only about 2,000,000 of pounds of sugar.
The supply now furnished as above will probably be greatly augmented in future years, from the same sources.
Add to these the prospect of sugar to be raised or produced from the Cane in Carolina and Georgia, as may be collected from the following items, selected from the newspapers also, viz.
In 1814, Thomas Spalding made on Sapelo Island, in lat. 31½, as much as 95 hogsheads of excellent sugar, equal to Jamaica, from Canes he had planted there.
In 1815, Major Butler, on his plantation in South Carolina, produced by the labour of seventeen hands, off of 85 acres of land, 140,000 pounds of sugar, and 75 hogsheads of molasses.
Also, John M'Queen, off of 18 acres, had 20,000 Canes per acre, worked by five or six hands; 5,000 Canes, the produce of one quarter of an acre, yielded 600 gallons of juice, which boiled down made 672 pounds sugar, and may lose 50 pounds in draining, leaving 622 pounds; or per acre, of sugar, 2,488 pounds.
Again, as to the Sugar Maple tree, or as some say it is more properly styled, "The Sugar Tree;" in 1815, 64,000 pounds of sugar were made in the town of Plattsburgh, Clinton county, New York. In 1818, 22,000 pounds were made by 80 families, in one township in Bradford county, Pennsylvania, which is on an average 275 pounds to each family.
There can be little doubt but that arrangements might be made by some of the merchants of Philadelphia, to procure a regular supply of the best Sugar Tree sugar, for the accommodation of such persons as are religiously scrupulous of using sugar made from the Cane, which is produced by the labour of slaves.
I have seen Maple sugar with which sufficient pains had been taken in the making and draining, that was as handsome in its appearance and as well tasted and good in every respect, I thought, as any West India sugar I had ever seen, and when refined equal to any loaf sugar. Of which, I remember H. D. of this city, merchant, since deceased, about the year 1789, sent some boxes as a present to general Washington, then president of the United States, residing in New York.
Near twenty years ago, when little domestic sugar was made in the United States, I computed from the duties paid, that the whole consumption of sugar annually in our country, then, was about ten pounds for every individual, on an average. There are now, I suppose, ten millions of inhabitants in the United States, who, at the above ratio, would consume annually 100,000,000 pounds sugar, of which we now make 35,000,000 lbs. per annum, as above calculated.
Last winter there was an account in some of the newspapers, that a person in Virginia had obtained a patent for making sugar from wheat, rye or Indian corn; that it was good sugar, and that each bushel yielded fifteen pounds. I have heard no more of it, but if well founded, this would be the greatest acquisition of all, because, in every part of our country, sugar, without the use of slaves, could be made in the greatest abundance, and might beneficially supplant the practice of making so much pernicious whiskey, in places remote from sea-ports.
From what has been now stated, there seems to be scarce room for a doubt, but that in a few years, we can be supplied from domestic sources with all the sugar we shall want for our own consumption.
By an account of Joseph Cooper's native Grape Vine, published in your Rural Magazine, No. 7, page 247 as little doubt can exist but that with proper care by the farmers, our country may also be supplied with good wine, sufficient for our own use, and probably with more profit to the growers, than they can find by pursuing the old beaten track of adhering almost entirely to grain which is now so low in price.
The southern and western parts of our territories would, probably, with proper encouragement, yield all the coffee and silk we might be able to consume.
All these, and many other objects of culture, are proper for the attention, recommendation and encouragement of state legislatures, of agricultural societies, and of all patriotic members of society. Thus we may become, in time, really independent; and from the extent of our country, and the variety of its climates, come to consider our own dominions as a world of our own, producing nearly all that is necessary for the use of man, as Sir George Staunton, in his Embassy, says the Chinese consider their vast extensive empire. This consideration, probably, makes them in a great measure, regardless of foreign trade.
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
ENCOURAGEMENT FOR FARMERS ON POOR LAND.
It is believed, that many productions possess a delicacy in their qualities, when raised on light soils, which they have not, when grown on rich and fat soils. The wool produced on the poor South Down soils of Great Britain is far superior to the wool raised on the rich alluvion lands of Lincolnshire in that country. The wines produced among the gravels and pebbles of the _Medoc_ district near Bordeaux are much superior to the wines produced on the _palus_ or alluvion lands between the two rivers Lot and Garonne in the same vicinity. The Tesamum produces the most delicate oil from light soils. This suggestion is worthy of consideration and experiment in respect to animals, fruits, grains, and gardeners and farmers' vegetables.
From the July No. of the North American Review.
_Letters écrites d'Italie en 1812 et 13, à M. Charles Pictet, l'un des Rédacteurs de la Bibliothéque Britannique par Fréderic Sullin de Chateauvieux. A Paris et à Genéve._ 1816, 2 vols. 12mo. pp. 576.
Perhaps there are none of our natural advantages which it still remains for us fully to appreciate and avail ourselves of, so much as those which respect the agriculture of our country.
Without running into all the errors of the economists or adopting their entire theory, we trust that we may assert the paramount importance of this pursuit, particularly to the United States. To every country it affords at least a partial, and often a complete subsistence for its population; it gives a constant and healthful employment to sometimes more than half and never less than a fifth of the community; its profits though not so large, are more certain than those in other employments of captal; and while it replaces the annual advance invested, a surplus profit has accrued, which can be employed as private interest and the public good may require. But in the United States the cultivation of the soil has these and many more advantages; nay, it is intimately connected with our national character, because it powerfully acts upon the morals and constitution of our citizens. If it be true, that the torch of liberty has always burned with a purer and brighter lustre on the mountains than on the plains, it is still more true, that the sentiments of honour and integrity more generally animate the rough but manly form of the farmer, than the debilitated body of the artisan. There is in that primitive and honourable occupation, the culture of the earth, something which, while it pours into the lap of the state an increase beyond every other employment, gives us more than the fabled stone, not only a subsistence, but a placid feeling of contentment; not only creates the appetite to enjoy, but guarantees its continuance by a robust constitution, fortified with the safeguards of temperance and virtue.
 'Farmers and country labourers, on the contrary, may enjoy completely the whole funds destined for their own subsistence, and yet augment at the same time the revenue and wealth of their society. Over and above what is destined for their own subsistence, their industry annually affords a neat produce, of which the augmentation necessarily augments the revenue and wealth of their society.' _Smith's Wealth of Nations,_ Vol. 111. p. 178.
'Farmers and country labourers, indeed, over and above the stock which maintains and employs them, reproduce annually a neat produce, a free rent to the landlord.' _Ibid_, p. 186.
The anxiety of our countrymen to possess in fee a spot of ground however small, and the consequent paucity of leases, is a fact no less curious than it is solitary. This is not the case, or at least in any considerable degree, in any other country. Such indeed in Britain were formerly those small proprietors called franklins, who possessed a keen spirit of independence and a determined opposition to oppression; feelings which, with the alienation of their farms, have gradually departed from the breasts of their descendants.
Notwithstanding, however, the ease with which the pride of independent possession may be gratified, it is not the less true that agriculture, instead of being a favoured, has been a degraded and unpopular pursuit; that instead of cherishing every motive which might lead to its honourable extension, we have endeavoured gradually to weaken its legitimate efforts. It is indeed a singular inquiry, why the cultivation of the soil among us should have been so little encouraged, when every state in Europe, since the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle, has turned its most assiduous attention to this most important department of domestic economy, and ultimately borrowed from it the resources which have carried them through the prodigious conflicts of the last generation.
There have been many causes, certainly not all of equal efficacy, which have co-operated against the interests of agriculture. But there is a prominent one to which we can but just allude. During a very considerable period, since the peace of '83, the peculiar situation of Europe has afforded opportunities for commercial enterprise too tempting to be resisted.--American merchants received, in the lapse of a very few years, the most astonishing accessions of wealth; and fortunes, ordinarily the fruit of a laborious life, and never the portion of many, were amassed with unparalleled rapidity, and by large numbers. Our domestic prosperity more than equalled the extension of our trade. It was then that the compting-houses of our merchants were filled with youth from the country, who forsook the slower but surer emoluments of agriculture, for the mushroom but unsubstantial fortunes of commerce; nay, who preferred the meanest drudgery behind the counter of a retail dealer, to the manly and invigorating toil of the cultivator of his paternal acres. Unfortunately this spirit of migration was encouraged by too great a success in trade. Feelings of vulgar pride contracted in town caused the manual labour of the farmer to be regarded as degrading; this unworthy sentiment spread with baleful influence, and when the compting-houses became overstocked and afforded no longer a resource, it was no uncommon thing to see a young man with no qualifications but a little bad Latin picked up at a miserable village school, forsake a large and fertile farm and apprentice himself to a poor country attorney.
Another cause of the depressed state of agriculture, mentioned in late publication, is the constant emigration to the west. There must necessarily be a tendency to a most empoverishing system of cultivation, where people feel that after having extracted all the richness of the soil, they may throw it up and remove to a country, which offers them an untouched surface, and needs no artificial aid of composts or manure. The land, besides suffering from negligence consequent on the prospect of departure, will be worn out by successive crops, and long be rendered unfit for the most valuable dispositions of the agriculturist. Indeed we have been informed, that in many instances, when the land is almost ruined by the continued culture of tobacco, it is sold by the planter to some enterprizing and laborious individual, who may restore it by his patience and attention, while he himself removes to another spot, where the same wretched system of exhaustion may again be renewed.--There are other causes we might mention, such as the unwieldy size of our farms, and particularly the want of a regular enlightened farming system. But we cannot now stop to enter on these topics, but may notice them hereafter.
 Letters on the Eastern States.
If then agriculture be so important an item in a nation's resources, affording such subsistence to its population, and a surplus capital to be employed in the various objects of national industry and enterprise, it would seem to follow, that nothing but very imperious circumstances should induce any government to repress its vigour, or palsy the exertions of those devoted to it. Immediately connected with such an attempt was the late bill before Congress, establishing a new tariff of duties. But why go back to a bill which was rejected? We answer, that it is not to be forgotten that private interest is one of the most powerful incentives to action, that the manufacturing interest is large and increasing, that one defeat will not discourage its partisans, and lastly, extraordinary as the fact may seem, that the bill in question, fraught with such varied evil, was thrown out by a majority of only _one_ vote in the senate. The tendency of this project was not only to introduce an unequal system of taxation, but first, by the destruction of a large part of our foreign commerce, to diminish very materially the market for our home products, and secondly, to divert a large portion of agricultural industry into the service of the loom and spinning jenny.
But it will be asked, are manufactures then to be entirely neglected? Most certainly not. Still there is a certain limit, in a newly settled country with a thin population, beyond which their establishment is not only useless to government, but a burden to the people. It is undoubtedly true that the manufacture of articles of immediate necessity or very general circulation ought to be encouraged by a wise and provident people; but it ordinarily happens that these need no extraordinary patronage; their extended use soon gives a facility to the artist, which enables him to enter into competition with the foreigner, provided the raw material is to be found at home in any tolerable abundance. Thus we find that hats were manufactured in the colonies at a very early period; together with household furniture, saddlery, &c. they have long since ceased to be an article of importation. It is necessary for the well-being and security of a nation, that certain articles, should be manufactured within its limits, such as gunpowder, coarse clothing, and some others of a similar discription.--But the moment people attempt to force by means of high duties on foreign imports the production of a commodity, which, by reason of the extravagance of the wages of labour and other causes, must necessarily be sold at a much greater price than the imported one, their conduct would seem no less an affront to common sense, than a solecism in political economy.
The United States possess a very restricted capital; and as the tilling of the soil requires comparatively much fewer advances than any other department of industry, that capital became immediately invested in agriculture. Land, cheap, and fertile, constituted a fund which gave a certain profit. And as the productions of the labour of more than five eighths of our population went to purchase foreign articles either of luxury or necessity, a great and profitable intercourse was constantly maintained with Europe. Under an equitable system of foreign duties, arising from this commerce, the expenses of government were defrayed, our debt gradually extinguished, and by a powerful but necessary re-action our agriculture improved and extended. But the tariff bill restricted a large and valuable commerce principally with Britain. It is not to be supposed that, while we refused the broadcloths and hardware of England, she would still continue to buy the same proportion of our cotton and tobacco. Our market then for these articles would be so far lost; and if we now feel the effects of a diminished demand for our produce in consequence of the establishment of peace in Europe, how can it be thought a wise policy to suffer other embarrassments and losses, by excluding ourselves entirely from every foreign port where we might calculate upon its sale? Where then is our produce to find a vent? For assuredly the most enthusiastic friend of domestic manufactures could never imagine, that the most extensive establishment of them could ever give an adequate consumption for the present amount of our agricultural productions.
The bill then imposing heavy duties on foreign articles, besides diminishing the number of the cultivators of the soil, would in some degree operate as a tax on its fruits, because, while the price of manufactures was enormously increased, the value of produce would be more than proportionally diminished. For the cultivator, not only deprived of the benefit of a competition between the domestic and foreign consumer in the sale of his articles, is obliged to purchase those of his neighbour, at any price which his cupidity and the tariff may determine. The expenses of the state being still the same and its usual resources dried up, a general but unequal system of taxation would be adopted, which in fact, the farmer bending under the weight of this partial policy, is less able to pay whatever contribution may be levied. These assertions are by no means novel, they are mere corollaries from the plainest and most undoubted principles of political economy. Dr. Adam Smith, the great father of the science, and all whose views on this subject, though not acted upon in a country whose domestic policy was too firmly established to be changed without a most serious revolution, ought to have great weight with us in the adoption of any permanent system, speaks in this decided manner in his "Wealth of Nations," vol. iii. p. 201. "It is thus that every system which endeavours, either by extraordinary encouragements, to draw towards a particular species of industry a greater share of the capital of the society, than what would naturally go to it; or by extraordinary restraints, to force from particular species of industry some share of the capital which would otherwise be employed in it; is in reality subversive of the great purpose which it means to promote. It retards instead of accelerating the progress of the society towards real wealth and greatness; and diminishes instead of increasing the real value of the annual produce of its land and labour. All systems either of preference or restraint therefore, being thus completely taken away, the obvious and simple system of natural liberty establishes itself of its own accord. Every man, as long as he does not violate the laws of justice, is left perfectly free to pursue his own interest his own way, and to bring both his industry and capital into competition with those of any other man or order of men." M. Say, a man no less remarkable for his practical knowledge of manufacturing industry, than his profound acquaintance with every branch of economical science, has given his marked disapprobation of that system which we are discussing. "Lorsqu'au travers de cette marche naturelle des choses," says he, "l'autorité se montre et dit: le produit, qu'on veut créer, celui qui donne les meilleurs profits, et par conséquent celui qui est le plus recherché, n'est pas celui qui convient, il faut qu'on s'occupe de tel autre; elle dirige évidemment une partie de la production vers un genre, dont le besoin se fait sentir davantage." Traité d'Economic Politique, tom. i. p. 168. We can only refer to pages 172 and 201 for the expansion of these ideas. It is thus we find that the arguments adduced in favour of this system neither accord with the convictions of fact nor the suggestions of reason. Whenever the increasing capital devoted to the land can no longer be profitably employed, then manufactures will flourish and the surplus profits of agriculture be legitimately devoted to their support.
During the late war, the prospect of large gains caused by the extravagant price of all European commodities, caused many persons in our country to embark their fortunes in cotton and woollen factories.--These factories were brought into being by a temporary and unnatural state of things. On the return of the peace of 1814, many of these manufacturing establishments came of necessity to an end. Some establishments remain and ought to succeed, because they prove that the profits of their capital may enter into competition with that employed in agriculture. In this case the transfer is not only natural but conducive to national wealth.
But we are asked to patronise manufactures at the expense of agriculture, on the ground of our being rendered really more independent by them. This is, however, but an attempt to conceal private interest under the garb of patriotism, and ought at least to awaken suspicion. We are not to be called _dependant_ merely because a state of war might give rise to many inconveniences. We can do without silks or broadcloths while we possess the real means of sustenance and defence. But these factories once established, say the advocates of this interest, the citizens ought to support them in their present languishing condition, and therefore ought not to buy, even at a much less price, foreign articles in preference to our own. The force and propriety of such reasoning would appear to be similar to that of a gardener, who having in winter devoted himself to the cultivation of flowers, &c., by means of artificial heat, should in the spring apply for an act of the municipal authority, forbidding all persons to pluck a daisy or violet in the field, and requiring them to resort to his hot-house. So far from there being a necessity for any interference on the part of government, we believe we may assert that our manufactures never were so flourishing as since the peace. It is true that many establishments have been broken up and much capital sunk, but it is a fact that those factories which are in the hands of individuals, have generally been successful, while those conducted by incorporated companies wanting the circumspection and prudence of private interest, have as often become bankrupt. In the western states this branch of business has greatly improved, and recent information enables us to affirm, that the profits which are now realised are nearly as large as those during the war. In the east, we might cite an instance, which must put down all cavil on this subject. The cotton factory at Waltham near Boston, begun when manufactures were by no means in so promising a situation as at present, is a triumphant answer to every one who demands additional encouragement for the loom, and a new tax on his brethren to extend its operations.
 "Qui est-ce qui solicite des prohibitions ou de forts droits d'entrée dans un état? ce sont les producteurs de la denrée dont il s'agit de prohiber la concurrance, et non pas les consommateurs. Ils disent, c'est pour l'intérêt de l'état; mais il est clair que c'est pour le leur uniquement.--N'est-ce pas la même chose, continuent-ils, et ce que nous gagnons n'est-il pas autant de gagné pour notre pays? point de tout:--ce que vous gagnez de cette manière est tiré de la poche de votre voisin, d'un habitant du même pays; et si l'on pouvait compter l'excédant de dépense fait par les consommateurs, en consequence de votre monopole, on trouverait qu'il surpasse le gain que le monopole vous a valu." Traité d'Economie Politique par Jean-Baptiste Say, tom. i. p. 203.
But we hasten to return from our wanderings, and to introduce our readers to the work, of which we have prefixed the title to this article. It is in the form of letters addressed to Professor Pictet of Geneva, from various places in Italy, and contains the author's remarks upon that country. He dwells not on the palaces of Venice, neither worships at the altar of Roman genius in the Pantheon, but taking his silent way through the fields, he describes that which gave birth to both: he informs us of the processes of Italian farming, of the effects of irrigation, and of the general state of Italian agriculture. And, in our opinion, he has shewn as much taste in the execution of his design, as those travellers who have employed themselves upon inquiries commonly thought as interesting, but certainly not as useful. M. de Chateauvieux appears to be an enthusiastic admirer of the subject on which he writes, as well as to have a practical knowledge of all its details. His book is very little known among us, though it has lately been translated in England, and formerly occupied the attention of a celebrated critical journal of that country. It is our intention in this article to put our readers in mind of its existence.
The author divides Italy into three regions, distinguished by their different systems of cultivation.--The first extends from mount Cenis and the Alps of Suza to the shores of the Adriatic. The fertility of Lombardy is proved by the constant succession of its crops, and to this province he has given the name of "Pays de Culture par assolement," or the district of culture by rotation of crops. The second of the regions reposes on the southern declivity of the Appenines, from the frontiers of Provence to the boundaries of Calabria. This is called the District of Olive trees, or, by an association somewhat forced, of Canaanitish culture. The third region is that of _Malaria_, or patriarchal cultivation, from a supposed resemblance, which we are still less able to enter into, between the shepherds of the older and the present time. It is found from Pisa to Terracina, and comprehends the plain between the sea and the first ridge of the Appenines.
Lombardy has been often called the garden of Europe, and seems abundantly entitled to the appellation. The soil is not only rich and alluvial, but deep and perfectly level. The climate is humid, and the system of irrigation supplies water to almost every field. These circumstances, united to the heat of a southern sun, cause a most rapid and luxurious vegetation. Nothing can be more important in the economy of a farm than the situation of the farm-house and its out-buildings. In this respect our American farmers are lamentably deficient, and though we would not recommend as a model the one described by de Chateauvieux as common in Lombardy, still we think it would afford some valuable hints. The buildings raised on the four sides of a square, present on one side a central elevation of two stories. The lower part for the farmer, the upper story for his grain. Adjoining this, at each end, is a stable plastered so as not to let the dust descend, for the cows and oxen; the other three sides of the square are enclosed by a sort of portico, open within and supported by columns, which serves as a depository for straw, hay, &c.--This structure is about twenty-four feet broad, and fifteen high. Half the court is paved, the remainder is used for threshing out the corn, which, in the primitive way, is still done by horses. The place for manure is outside of the court. This plan presents the most space with the least building, and assures the preservation of every product.
The farms in Lombardy are small, and do not often contain sixty arpents; notwithstanding M. de Chateauvieux asserts against Arthur Young, that they bring more to market than the large farms, and that there is no country in the world which can dispose of so large a portion of its productions as Piedmont. If the fact be so, it may possibly arise from the peculiar character of the persons who cultivate the land.--Our author, however, remarks, that this system of small farms can never take place till the advances of capital have carried agriculture to its highest point. Lombardy is cultivated by a species of farmers, called _metayers_. They pay a small fixed rent, valued at one half the produce of the meadow, or forty francs the arpent. The clover belongs to them entirely; the crops of wheat, Indian corn, and flax, and the wine and silk are equally divided between them and their landlord. The latter advances nothing but the taxes, and of course must find such an arrangement singularly advantageous. Father and son continue the same engagement, without the formality of a lease or any registry of the contract. M. Say regards this system as unfavourable to agriculture, and in his treatise on Political Economy, book ii. chap. 9, vol. 2, says, "il y a des cultivateurs qui n'ont rien, et auxquels le propriétaire fournit le capital avec la terre: on les appelle des Métayers. Ils rendent communément au propriétaire la moitié du produit brut. Ce genre de culture appartient à un état peu avancé de l'agriculture, et il est le plus défavorable de tout aux améliorations des terres; car celui des deux, du proprietaire ou du fermier, qui ferait l'améliarition à ses frais, admettrait l'autre à jouir gratuitement de la moitié de l'interêt de ses avances."
 An arpent is to an acre nearly as five to four.
(To be concluded in next Number.)
I have stated in my former communications, the result of my experience in the cultivation of potatoes. So long as I practised setting my crop with small potatoes, the cullings of my potato bins, my crops degenerated, grew less and less for several years, and finally run entirely out.--I changed my practice, and the result has been a continued improvement for near ten years, both in quantity and quality. My practice has been to select the largest, soundest, and best potatoes for seed, to cut them into 4 quarters, and plant 4 pieces in each hill in a square of about 9 inches. The results have been every way satisfactory. My potatoes have been large, constantly improving in size, earlier, better, and more abundant from year to year. I have never been nice enough to weigh my seed, to ascertain exactly whether a potato of one ounce or two ounces be as perfect a root as one of 6 or 12 ounces. My experience both in planting and in distillation has left on my mind a strong impression that small unripe seed is very improper, and very unprofitable. I am aware that many farmers hold firmly that small seed potatoes are as good as large ones; but I also know that I have sold potatoes to these men at 5 and 6 shillings per bushel, and some of them have been convinced that good seed was an object even at those prices. In the south I am aware that it is the practice almost uniformly to plant small sweet potatoes. But I am fully persuaded it is an error. To this cause I think may be justly attributed the decrease and deterioration in the crops of this valuable root.
_Middlesex, August 3, 1820._
ECONOMY IN FUEL.
While economy is the order of the day, it may not be amiss to point out an item of which it is believed a general ignorance prevails. It is well known to philosophers that when water commences to boil in the open air no additional fire can make it any hotter. A contrary opinion prevails, and those employed in cooking victuals, in order to accelerate the operation think that they cannot make the fire too intense. The fuel added for this purpose is, in fact, not only a wanton waste, but by causing a violent ebulition, it forces from the victuals, with the steam its finest flavour. How much fuel in families might be saved if, in cooking, no more were used than to keep the water that is used just at the boiling point, and it is certain the victuals would be the better for it.
Directions for making sweet, clear Cider, that shall retain its fine vinous flavour, and keep good for a long time in casks, like wine.
It is of importance in making cider, that the mill, the press, and all the materials be sweet and clean, and the straw clear from must. To make good cider, fruit should be ripe, (but not rotten) and when the apples are ground, if the juice is left in the pummice twenty-four hours, the cider will be richer, softer, and higher coloured; if fruit is all of the same kind, it is generally thought that the cider will be better; as the fermentation will certainly be more regular, which is of importance. The gathering and grinding of the apples, the pressing out of the juice, is a mere manual labour, performed with very little skill in the operation; but here the great art of making good cider commences; for as soon as the juice is pressed out, nature begins to work a wonderful change in it. The juice of fruit, if left to itself, will undergo three distinct fermentations, all of which change the quality and nature of this fluid. The first is the vinous; the second the acid, which makes it hard and prepares it for vinegar; by the third it becomes putrid. The first fermentation is the only one the juice of apples should undergo, to make good cider. It is this operation that separates the juice from the filth, and leaves it a clear, sweet, vinous liquor. To preserve it in this state is the grand secret; this is done by fumigating it with sulphur, which checks any further fermentation, and preserves it in its fine vinous state. It is to be wished that all cider makers would make a trial of this method; it is attended with no expense, and but little trouble, and will have the desired effect.
I would recommend that the juice as it comes from the press, be placed in open headed casks or vats: in this situation it is most likely to undergo a proper fermentation, and the person attending may with correctness ascertain when this fermentation ceases; this is of great importance, and must be particularly attended to. The fermentation is attended with a hissing noise, bubbles rising to the surface and there forming a soft spongy crust over the liquor. When this crust begins to crack, and white froth appears in the cracks level with the surface of the head, the fermentation is about stopping. At this time the liquor is in a fine, genuine, clear state, and must be drawn off immediately into clean casks: and this is the time to fumigate it with sulphur. To do this, take a strip of canvas or rag, about 2 inches broad and twelve long; dip this into melted sulphur, and when a few pails of worked cider are put into the cask, set this match on fire and hold it in the cask, till it is consumed, then bung the cask and shake it, that the liquor may incorporate with and retain the fumes; after this fill the cask and bung it up. The cider should be racked off again the latter part of February or first of March; and if not as clear as you wish it, put in isinglass to fine it, and stir it well; then put the cask in a cool place, where it will not be disturbed, for the fining to settle. Cider prepared in this manner will keep sweet for years.
It is certainly of great importance to the people of America to cultivate the fruit that is natural to the soil of their country, and to make the most of the fruit which the soil produces; especially, when its produce is an article of value and of great consumption in this country.
A LOVER OF GOOD CIDER.
_Am. D. Adv._]
CABBAGES FOR CATTLE.
_Extract of a Letter._
Having been in England, I have had an opportunity of observing many improvements in agriculture, which, if I were to see them adopted here, would give me the sincerest pleasure. Among the number of them, I think the culture of cabbages for fattening of cattle stands in the first rank. From strong soils, it may fairly be questioned whether any kind of winter provision can be raised of such weight and quality per acre, as the larger kind of cabbages. For cows, they surpass all other kinds of vegetables, and probably some method may be thought of, by which they may be conveniently preserved through our long winters. The colewort cabbage used to be in most esteem, but I understand that a variety of the large red kind is coming into use, and bids fair to drive out the Scotch drumhead, it being much more hardy. They are exceedingly well adapted to wet land, and will prove very productive where turnips cannot be raised to any good purpose. It is, unquestionably, a crop of far more use and value than the mangel wurzel, which has, in England, within these few years, been in such fashionable culture.
In England and Scotland, I have seen the _parings of potatoes_ planted as seed; and at the same time I was told that they yielded quite as plentifully as cuttings with three eyes, or even whole potatoes.
I never had an opportunity of witnessing the result, but it may be worth while for some experimental agriculturist to plant some in this way, in order to prove or shew the fallacy of the assertion. I should recommend that they cut the parings about two-tenths of an inch in thickness, as those parings which I saw planted always had the eye left in them entire, and the root of the germ not in the least wounded.
[_St. John's paper._
PRESENT STATE OF POMPEII.
From William's Travels in Italy, Greece, &c.
Pompeii, which was entombed in a softer substance, is getting daily disencumbered, and a very considerable part of this Grecian city is unveiled. We entered by the Appian way, through a narrow street of marble tombs, beautifully executed, with the names of the deceased plain and legible. We looked into the columbary below that of Marius Arius Diomedes, and perceived jars containing the ashes of the dead, with a small lamp at the side of each. Arriving at the gate, we perceived a sentry box in which the skeleton of a soldier was found with a lamp in its hand: proceeding up the street beyond the gate, we went into several streets, and entered what is called a coffee house, the marks of cups being visible on the stone; we came likewise to a tavern, and found the sign (not a very decent one) near the entrance. The streets are lined with public buildings and private houses, most of which have their original painted decorations fresh and entire. The pavement of the streets is much worn by carriage wheels, and holes are cut through the side stones, for the purpose of fastening animals in the market place; and in certain situations are placed stepping stones, which give us rather unfavourable ideas of the state of the streets. We passed two beautiful little temples; went into a surgeon's house, in the operation room of which chirurgical instruments were found; entered an ironmonger's shop, where an anvil and hammer were discovered; a sculptor's and a baker's shop, in the latter of which may be seen an oven and grinding mills, like old Scotch querns. We examined likewise an oilman's shop, and a wine shop lately opened, where money was found in the till; a school in which was a small pulpit with steps up to it, in the middle of the apartment; a great theatre; a temple of justice; an amphitheatre, about 220 feet in length; various temples; a barrack for soldiers, the columns of which are scribbled with their names and jests; wells, cisterns, seats, tricliniums, beautiful Mosaic; altars, inscriptions, fragments of statues, and many other curious remains of antiquity. Among the most remarkable objects were an ancient wall, with a part of a still more ancient marble freze built in it as a common stone; and a stream which has flowed under this once subterraneous city, long before its burial; pipes of Terra Cotta to convey the water to the different streets; stocks for prisoners, in one of which a skeleton was found. All these things incline one almost to look for the inhabitants, and wonder at the desolate silence of the place.
The houses in general are very low, and the rooms are small, I should think not above ten feet high. Every house is provided with a well and a cistern. Every thing seems to be in proportion; the principal streets do not appear to exceed 16 feet in width, with side pavements of about three feet; some of the subordinate streets are from 6 to 10 feet wide, with side pavements in proportion; these are occasionally high, and are reached by steps. The columns of the barracks are about 15 feet in height; they are made of tuffa with stucco; one third of the shaft is smoothly plastered, the rest fluted to the capital. The walls of the houses are often painted red, and some of them have borders and antique ornaments, masks, and imitations of marbles, but in general poorly executed. I have observed, on the walls of an eating room, various kinds of food and game tolerably represented; one _woman's_ apartment was adorned with subjects relative to love; and a _man's_ with pictures of a martial character. Considering that the whole has been under ground upwards of seventeen centuries, it is certainly surprizing that they should be as fresh as at the period of their burial. The whole extent of the city, not half of which is excavated, may be about four miles. It is said that Murat employed no less than 2000 men in clearing Pompeii, and that Madame Murat attended the excavations in person every week. The present government have not retained above 100.
After visiting this extraordinary place, which certainly is the most interesting of all the wonders of Naples, we examined the museum of antiquities at Purtici. The collections of ancient paintings are curious and instructing, some of them containing exquisite pieces of art; one room is filled with representations of fruit and flowers, well painted and freely handled; some grapes in particular are remarkable for execution, quite transparent, with the touches of light on them judiciously placed to give effect and clearness. A second room contains various ornaments painted in a masterly manner, and with considerable ingenuity in the design. A third is covered with various animals and birds. Another apartment is filled with landscapes, but these are all extremely bad, having no perspective, nor any truth of colouring: indeed it would seem that the ancient painters had never given their mind to that delightful branch of the art. One landscape, however, with all its faults, interested me greatly, and that was a view of ancient Puteoli, (now Pozzuolo,) about six miles from Naples, supposed to have been painted before St. Paul landed there. The picture is, of course, very different from the present state of the city, but still a likeness may be traced, if we keep in view the site of the various temples and other objects, the foundations of which are still visible.
Among the innumerable pictures which are crowded in several rooms, I shall mention the following, which, on slight examination, appeared to be among the best: _Sophonisba drinking the juice of Hemlock_, admirable in expression; _an Infant Hercules strangling Serpents_; _Jove_; _Leda and the Swan_; _the Graces_; _a Venus_; _Education of Bacchus_; _a Medusa's Head_:--these are all slight, but it is that slightness which conveys character and refinement of taste; a _Theseus_ as large as life, in a fine attitude and good expression: Two allegorical figures, representing the river _Nile and Egypt_; _the Education of Achilles_; _a beautiful Female suckling an aged Man_, (corresponding to the Roman Charity,) most delicately expressed: An _Academy of Music_, the figures small, exquisitely painted; harps and flageolets are the only instruments. Among the curious pictures is the interior of a school, in which the master is represented flogging a boy, who is upon another boy's back; so that the practice of _horsing_ is sanctioned by very ancient authority. Our attention was likewise attracted by a shoemaker's and a cook's shop; these last are but indifferently designed and painted; a Wilkie or an Allan would smile at such productions. All these are in fresco, on stucco grounds, and with a considerable polish on the surface. It does not seem that any glazing colours have been used, the effect being produced entirely by body colour. The ancients, however, as Pliny informs us, had a dark, yet transparent mixture, which they laid over their highly finished works, to give the delusion required. From the freshness and clearness of the colouring, they seem to have had the advantage of painting in oil, so far, at least, as durability is of advantage.
The museum at Portici likewise contains many statues and busts of considerable merit; besides a great variety of culinary articles, and specimens, of calcined barley, beans, paste for bread, part of a roll, mustard-seed, straw, rye, pine tops, figs, cloth like tinder, fish nets, with corks attached to them, spunge, soap, rings, earrings, combs, thimbles, looking-glasses of polished metal, and a variety of emblems of luxury and taste, admirably executed. We examined them all with the keenest interest, though the impression would have been more gratifying, had they been left in the ancient towns in which they were discovered.
From the Pennsylvania Gazette, Nov. 18, 1736.
WASTE OF LIFE.
BY. DR. FRANKLIN.
Anergus was a gentleman of a good estate, he was bred to no business, and could not contrive how to waste his hours agreeably; he had no relish for any of the proper works of life, nor any taste at all for the improvements of the mind; he spent generally ten hours of the four and twenty in bed; he dozed away two or three more on his couch, and as many were dissolved in good liquor every evening, if he met with company of his own humour. Five or six of the rest he sauntered away with much indolence: the chief business of them was to contrive his meals, and to feed his fancy beforehand, with the promise of a dinner and supper; not that he was so very a glutton, or so entirely devoted to appetite; but chiefly because he knew not how to employ his thoughts better, he let them rove about the sustenance of his body. Thus he had made a shift to wear off ten years since the paternal estate fell into his hands: and yet, according to the abuse of words in our day, he was called a man of virtue, because he was scarce ever known to be quite drunk, nor was his nature much inclined to lewdness.
One evening, as he was musing alone, his thoughts happened to take a most unusual turn, for they cast a glance backward, and began to reflect on his manner of life. He bethought himself what a number of living beings had been made a sacrifice to support his carcase, and how much corn and wine had been mingled with those offerings. He had not quite lost all the arithmetic that he learned when he was a boy, and he set himself to compute what he had devoured since he came to the age of man.
"About a dozen feathered creatures, small and great, have one week with another (said he) given up their lives to prolong mine, which in ten years amounts to at least six thousand.
"Fifty sheep have been sacrificed in a year, with half a hecatomb of black cattle, that I might have the choicest part offered weekly upon my table. Thus a thousand beasts out of the flock and the herd have been slain in ten years' time to feed me, besides what the forest has supplied me with. Many hundreds of fishes have, in all their varieties, been robbed of life for my repast, and of the smaller fry as many thousands.
"A measure of corn would hardly afford fine flour enough for a month's provision, and this arises to above six score bushels; and many hogsheads of ale and wine, and other liquors, have passed through this body of mine, this wretched strainer of meat and drink.
"And what have I done all this time for God or _man_? What a vast profusion of good things upon a useless life, and a worthless liver! There is not the meanest creature among all these which I have devoured, but hath answered the end of its creation better than I. It was made to support human nature, and it hath done so. Every crab and oyster I have eat, and every grain of corn I have devoured, hath filled up its place in the rank of beings with more propriety and honour than I have done: O shameful waste of life and time!"
In short, he carried on his moral reflections with so just and severe a force of reason, as constrained him to change his whole course of life, to break off his follies at once, and to apply himself to gain some useful knowledge, when he was more than thirty years of age; he lived many following years with the character of a worthy man, and an excellent Christian; he performed the kind offices of a good neighbour at home, and made a shining figure as a patriot in the senate-house; he died with a peaceful conscience, and the tears of his country were dropped upon his tomb.
The world, that knew the whole series of his life, stood amazed at the mighty change. They beheld him as a wonder of reformation, while he himself confessed and adored the divine power and mercy, which had transformed him from a brute to a man.
But this was a single instance; and we may almost venture to write MIRACLE upon it. Are there not numbers of both sexes among our young gentry, in this degenerate age, whose lives thus run to utter waste, without the least tendency to usefulness!
When I meet with persons of such a worthless character as this, it brings to my mind some scraps of Horace,
Nos numerus sumus, & fruges consumere nati. ----Alcinoique Juventus Cui pulchrum fuit in Medios dormire dies, &c.
There are a number of us creep Into this world, to eat and sleep; And know no reason why they're born, But merely to consume the corn, Devour the cattle, fowl, and fish, And leave behind an empty dish: Though crows and ravens do the same, Unlucky birds of hateful name; Ravens or crows might fill their places, And swallow corn and carcases. Then, if their tombstone, when they die, Ben't taught to flatter and to lie, There's nothing better will be said, _Than that they've eat up all their bread, } Drank all their drink, and gone to bed._ }
There are other fragments of that heathen poet, which occur on such occasions; one in the first of his satires, the other in the first of his epistles, which seem to represent life only as a season of luxury.
----Exacto contentus tempore vitæ Cedat uti convivia statur---- Lusisti satus, edisti satis atque babisti; Tempus abire tibi.
Which may be thus put into English:
Life's but a feast; and when we die Horace would say, if he were by, Friend, thou hast eat and drank enough, 'Tis time now to be marching off: Then like a well-fed guest depart, With cheerful looks, and ease at heart; Bid all your friends good night, and say, _You've done the business of the day._
LESSONS ON THRIFT.
Published for general benefit, by a Member of the Save-all Club.
The caprice of men at different periods has delighted to make much of some darling qualities idolized as virtues, while others, which could not be mistaken for vices, have been tacitly scorned as only fit to occupy grovelling minds, and avert reproach from those who could not aspire to praise.
Among the latter we discover Frugality. What writer has ever thought of making his hero an economist? With a disposition to avoid unnecessary expense, it has long been assumed that a sordid and despicable parsimony must invariably be found, and the world has been accustomed to bestow its tenderest sympathies on the gay, florid, open-hearted rake, who having manifested a disposition to give, where he had nothing of his own to bestow, ruined those honest tradesmen who were credulous enough to trust him, and qualified himself for genteel society by visiting the King's Bench or the Fleet; while the man who disdained to be generous at the expense of others, who would not affect splendour which his means were inadequate to sustain, in fine, who denied himself enjoyments for which he could not honestly pay, has been treated with unsparing ridicule as a mean and pitiful plodder. Our citizens and traders have wisely joined to laugh this character out of countenance, and to applaud the swindling pleasantries of a profligate. Let them look to the effects of this--let them look to their legers, and see if they have not been merry _at their own expense_.
If there be any truth in the remark dropped by one of the greatest ornaments of British literature, that "it would be well if fewer possessed the superfluities, and more the comforts of life;" in times like the present, it is desirable that mankind should be weaned from the admiration of that which ought never to have been defended--that madness and dishonesty should no longer be depicted as the gracefully irregular flow of youthful gayety; and that the modest virtues which find a friend in the author of "Lessons on Thrift," should be recalled from that exile to which they were doomed by sordid dissipation and unreflecting folly.
But we must explain, as we proceed, to guard against mistake or representation. We do not wish to return to that enviable state, which we suppose some of our radical neighbours contemplate, when they talk of a "state of nature;" namely, that in which the first inhabitants of this island found themselves embowered in their native woods. We do not sigh for that economical simplicity which, according to Richard de Cirencester, made blue paint, applied to the human body, a substitute for clothing; nor do we even lift our voices against that most effeminate piece of luxury, as it was considered by some at the commencement of Queen Elizabeth's reign--the introduction of _chimneys to houses_. The votaries of luxury may think that, in the last instance, we make but a very slight concession; but the frightful effects of that departure from old English habits was once thought very alarming. We read in Hollingshed:--"Now have we many chimneys; and yet our tender limbs complain of rheums, catarrhs, and pozes; then had we none but reredosses, and our heads did never ache. For as the smoke in those days was supposed to be a sufficient hardening for the timber of the house, so it was reputed a far better medicine to keep the good man and his family from the quack or poze, wherewith, as then, very few were acquainted."
With all our reverence for economy, assuredly there are practitioners of the present day whom we would prefer to _Dr. Smoke_; even though calling in the former, we must submit to the inconvenience of offering a fee. We do not sigh for the return of those golden days, when our wise progenitors made the same aperture act the double part of a window and a chimney, and when a log of wood was considered an excellent pillow; but sometimes when our reluctant hands are a little embarrassed to find the expected fee, or our purses feel most _awkwardly convenient_ for the pocket, after settling the lengthened bill, we do regret that those who prescribe for us, when indisposed, must at the same time prescribe for their own horses and carriages, and that the period is gone by when a sufferer could hope for relief from the pill of a pedestrian.
Our author, to show the evil effects of luxury and extravagance, even in a national point of view, gives the following narrative:
"The Seven United Provinces were at the height of their power and prosperity about 1650, before England, recovering from a destructive civil war, began to reclaim the dominion of the ocean.
"But in their successful periods the private virtues had also their share, and parsimony, as usual produced wealth and industry. In a conversation at Rotterdam this subject was discussed; and as the parties mostly imputed the decline of their republic to political causes, an opulent merchant said, that if the company would dine with him on such a day, he would convince them that there were other causes more in their power.
"The invitation was accepted, and it was hoped that the merchant would explain his sentiments, by which they might improve their speculations in commerce over a glass of wine, after an elegant repast as he was accustomed to give. But what was their surprise to find nothing on the table but salted herrings and table beer! They ate, however, a morsel in silence and dissatisfaction, which the master seemed not to observe, praying them repeatedly to eat and push the glass. At length, when they began to look at their watches, the master ordered in the dinner. At this word they brightened up, when in came a leg of mutton, boiled with turnips, and a pot or two of strong beer. This dish was little more satisfactory than the other, as they expected very different fare in such a magnificent house. There was, however, a great sacrifice of conscience and veracity in praising the mutton and the beer. But some yawned, and half the _gigot_ remained even among a numerous company, when the master, seeing their distress, nodded unnoticed to an old hoary-headed domestic, who alone had appeared along with the mutton, and who stood respectfully at the sideboard to serve the bread or the beer. He went out, and the company was left to a languid conversation; their eyes saying more than their tongues.
"On a sudden the folding doors opened, and a train of twelve servants entered, bearing on massy plate the choicest fish, flesh, fowl, all the delicacies of the season. Two without livery took their places behind their master; the others in splendid uniform behind the guests. The number of wines presented was computed at fifteen, and even the richest guests were astonished at the splendour and variety of the festival.
"When an equal dessert was served, and the wine began to circulate, a prudent and wary guest thought it was time to request our opulent merchant to explain his sentiments, as he had promised. All were fixed in mute attention when he made this memorable answer: 'Gentlemen, my sentiments are already explained; the lesson is already given. When our ancestors were gradually rising to wealth under the yoke of Burgundy, Austria, Spain, their frugality was contented with our first dish, and they even blessed the inventor. In their second period, when the noble house of Orange, when Maurice of Nassau was establishing our power in the East and West Indies, and commercial wealth began to overflow all our ports and canals, still habits of prudence occasioned economy, and our rich senators dined on plain mutton, and drank wholesome beer. The dinner I have had the honour to give you is a very moderate specimen of our present existence. Add the luxury and pomp of houses, furniture and equipages, and judge, as you well can, of the difference of expense--a difference which, I would venture to say, would have, even for one year, been regarded as a fortune by our bearded ancestors.'"
BEAUTIES OF THE MICROSCOPE.
Nothing can be more curious than the appearance exhibited by _mouldiness_, when viewed through a microscope. If looked at by the naked eye, it seems nothing but an irregular tissue of filaments; but the magnifying glass shows it to be a forest of small plants, which derive their nourishment from the moist substance which serves them as a base. The stems of these plants may be plainly distinguish; and sometimes their buds, some shut and some open. They have much similarity to mushrooms, the tops of which, when they come to maturity, emit an exceedingly fine dust which is their seed. Mushrooms, it is well known, are the growth of a single night; but those in miniature, of which we are speaking, seem to come to perfection in a much less space of time than that; hence we account for the extraordinary progress which mouldiness makes in a few hours. Another curious observation of the same kind is, that M. Ahlefeld, seeing some stones covered with a sort of dust, had the curiosity to examine it with a microscope, and he found that it consisted of small microscopic mushrooms, raised on pedicles, the heads of which, round the middle, were turned up at the edges. They were striated also from the centre to the circumference, as certain kinds of mushrooms are. He further remarked, that they contained, above their upper covering, a multitude of small grains shaped like cherries somewhat flattened, which he suspected were the seeds; and finally he observed, among the forest of mushrooms, several small red insects, which probably fed upon them.
The _lycoperdon_, or puff-ball, is a plant of the fungus kind, which grows in the form of a tubercle, covered with small grains, very like chagreen. If pressed, it bursts, and emits an exceedingly fine kind of dust, which flies off under the appearance of smoke. If some of the dust be examined with the microscope, it appears to consist of perfectly round globules, of an orange colour, the diameter of which is only about the 1-50th part of the thickness of a hair, so that each grain of this dust is but the 1-125000th part of a globule, equal in diameter to the breadth of a hair.
The _farina of flowers_ is found to be regularly and uniformly organized in each kind of plant. In the mallow, for example, each grain is an opaque ball, covered over with small points. The farina of the tulip, and of most of the liliaceous kind of flowers, bears a striking resemblance to the seeds of a cucumber: that of the poppy is very like grains of barley, with a longitudinal groove in them.
There are certain plants, the leaves of which seem to be pierced with a multitude of small holes. Of this kind is the _hypericum_, or St. John's wort. Now, if a fragment of this be viewed with a good microscope, the supposed holes are found to be vesicles, contained in the thickness of the leaf, and covered with an extremely thin membrane; and these are thought to be the receptacles which contain the essential and aromatic oil peculiar to the plant.
The view exhibited by those plants which have down, such as borage, nettles, &c. is exceedingly curious.--When examined by a microscope, they appear to be covered with spikes. Those of borage are, for the most part, bent so as to form an elbow; and though really very close, they appear by the microscope, to be at a considerable distance from each other. The entire appearance is very similar to that of the skin of the porcupine.
If a needle be viewed through a microscope, though exceedingly fine, it is well known the point will appear quite blunt, more like a peg, broken at the end, than a sharp pointed steel needle. The edge of the finest set razor, when seen through a microscope, will appear more like the back of a penknife, full of irregularities, than what it really is. In these respects the works of art, when carried to the highest pitch of perfection, will not bear to be compared with the operations of nature. The latter, exposed to the microscope, instead of losing their lustre and high polish, appear so much the more beautiful and perfect in regularity and order. When the eyes of a fly are illuminated by means of a lamp or candle, and viewed through this instrument, each of them shows an image of the taper with a precision and vivacity which nothing can equal.
There are two kinds of _sand_, viz. the calcareous and the vitrifiable: the former, examined with a microscope, resembles large irregular fragments of rock; but the latter appears like so many rough diamonds. In some instances, the particles of sand seem to be highly polished and brilliant, like an assemblage of diamonds, rubies, and emeralds.
Charcoal is a fine object for the microscope. It is found full of pores, regularly arranged, and passing through its whole length.
The following melancholy letter alludes to Accum's "Treatise on Adulterations of Food and Culinary Poisons."
From Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine.
_From an elderly Gentlewoman to Mr. Christopher North._
My dear Mr. North--I much fear that this is the last letter you will ever receive from your old friend. "I'm wearin' awa, Kit! to the land o' the leal!" and that, too, under the influence of a complication of disorders, which have been undermining my constitution (originally a sound and stout one) for upwards of half a century. Look to yourself my much respected lad--and think no more of your rheumatism. That, believe me, is a mere trifle; but think of what you have been doing, since the peace of 1763, (in that year were you born,) in the eating and drinking way, and tremble. I know, my dear Kit, that you never were a gormandizer, nor a sot; neither surely was I--but it matters not--the most abstemious of us all have gone through fearful trials, and I have not skill in figures to cast up the poisonous contents of my hapless stomach for nearly threescore years. You would not know me now; I had not the slightest suspicion of myself in the looking-glass this morning. Such a face! so wan and wobegone! No such person drew Priam's curtains at dead of night, or could have told him half his Troy was burned.
Well--hear me come to the point. I remember now, perfectly well, that I have been out of sorts all my lifetime; and the causes of my continual illness have this day been revealed to me. May my melancholy fate be a warning to you, and all your clear contributors, a set of men whom the world could ill spare at this crisis. Mr. Editor--I HAVE BEEN POISONED.
You must know that I became personally acquainted a few weeks ago, quite accidentally, with that distinguished chymist, well known in our metropolis by the name of "Death in the Pot." He volunteered a visit to me at breakfast, last Thursday, and I accepted him. Just as I had poured out the first cup of tea, and was extending it graciously towards him, he looked at me, and with a low, hoarse, husky voice, like Mr. Kean's, asked me if I were not excessively ill? I had not had the least suspicion of being so--but there was a terrible something in "Death in the Pot's" face which told me I was a dead woman. I immediately got up--I mean strove to get up, to ring the bell for a clergyman--but I fainted away. On awaking from my swoon, I beheld "Death in the Pot" still staring with his fateful eyes--and croaking out, half in soliloquy, half in tête-a-tête, "There is not a life in London worth ten year's purchase." I implored him to speak plainly, and for God's sake not to look at me so malagrugorously--and plainly enough he did then speak to be sure--"Mrs. TROLLOPE, YOU ARE POISONED."
 Frederick Accum, Operative Chymist, &c.
"Who," cried I out convulsively, "who has perpetrated the foul deed? On whose guilty head will lie my innocent blood? Has it been from motives of private revenge? Speak, Mr. Accum--speak! Have you any proofs of a conspiracy?" "Yes, Madam, I have proofs, damning proofs. Your wine merchant, your brewer, your baker, your confectioner, your grocer, aye, your very butcher, are in league against you; and, Mrs. Trollope, YOU ARE POISONED!"--"When!--Oh! when was the fatal dose administered? Would an emetic be of no avail? Could you not yet administer a----" But here my voice was choked, and nothing was audible, Mr. North, but the sighs and sobs of your poor Trollope.
 Death in the Pot.
At last I became more composed--and Mr. Accum asked me what was, in general, the first thing I did on rising from bed in the morning. Alas! I felt that it was no time for delicacy, and I told him at once, that it was to take off a bumper of brandy for a complaint in my stomach. He asked to look at the bottle. I brought it forth from the press in my own number, that tall square tower-like bottle, Mr. North, so green to the eye and smooth to the grasp. You know the bottle well--it belonged to my mother before me. He put it to his nose--he poured out a driblet into a teaspoon as cautiously as if it had been the black drop--he tasted it--and again repeated these terrible words, "Mrs. TROLLOPE, YOU ARE POISONED. It has," he continued, "a peculiar disagreeable smell, like the breath of habitual drunkards." "Oh! thought I, has it come to this! The smell ever seemed to my unsuspecting soul most fragrant and delicious." "Death in the Pot" then told me, that the liquid I had been innocently drinking every morn for thirty years was not brandy at all, but a vile distillation of British molasses over wine lees, rectified over quick lime, and mixed with saw-dust. And this a sad, solitary, unsuspecting spinster had been imbibing as brandy for so many years! A gleam of comfort now shot across my brain--I told Mr. Accum that I had, during my whole life, been in the habit of taking a smallish glass of Hollands before going to bed, which I fain hoped might have the effect of counteracting the bad effects of the forgery that had been committed against me. I produced the bottle--the white globular one you know. "Death in the Pot" tried and tasted--and alas! instead of Hollands, pronounced it vile British malt spirit, fined by a solution of sub-acetate of lead, and then a solution of alum--and strengthened with grains of paradise, Guinea pepper, capsicum, and other acrid and aromatic substances. These are learned words--but they made a terrible impression upon my memory. Mr. Accum is a most amiable man, I well believe--but he is a stranger to pity. "Mrs. Trollope, YOU HAVE BEEN POISONED," was all he would utter. Had the brandy and Hollands been genuine, there would have been no harm--but they were _imitation_, and "YOU ARE POISONED."
Feeling myself very faint, I asked, naturally enough for a woman in my situation, for a glass of wine. It was brought--but Mr. Accum was at hand to snatch the deadly draught from my lips. He tasted what used to be called my genuine old port,
"And in the scowl of heaven his face, Grew black as he was sipping."
"It is spoiled elder wine--rendered astringent by oak-wood, saw-dust, and the husks of filberts--lead and arsenic, madam, are----" but my ears tingled, and I heard no more. I confessed to the amount of six glasses a day of this hellish liquor--pardon my warmth--and that such had been my allowance for many years. My thirst was now intolerable, and I beseeched a glass of beer. It came, and "Death in the Pot" detected at once the murderous designs of the brewer. Coculus indicus, Spanish juice, hartshorn shavings, orange powder, copperas, opium, tobacco, nux vomica--such were the shocking words he kept repeating to himself--and then again, "Mrs. TROLLOPE IS POISONED."--"May I not have a single cup of tea, Mr. Accum," I asked imploringly, and the chymist shook his head. He then opened the tea-caddy, and emptying its contents, rubbed my best green tea between his hard horny palms. "Sloe-leaves, and white-thorn leaves, madam, coloured with Dutch pink, and with the fine green bloom of verdigris! Much, in the course of your regular life, you must have swallowed!" "Might I try the coffee?" Oh! Mr. North, Mr. North, you know my age, and never once, during my whole existence, have I tasted coffee. I have been deluded by pease and beans, sand, gravel, and vegetable powder! Mr. Accum called it sham coffee, most infamous stuff, and unfit for human food! Alas! the day that I was born! In despair I asked for a glass of water, and just as the sparkling beverage was about to touch my pale quivering lips, my friend, for I must call him so in spite of every thing, interfered, and tasting it, squirted out of his mouth, with a most alarming countenance. "It comes out of a lead cistern--it is a deadly poison." Here I threw myself on my knees before this inexorable man, and cried, "Mr. Death in the Pot, is there in heaven, on earth, or the waters under the earth, any one particle of matter that is not impregnated with death? What means this desperate mockery? For mercy's sake give me the very smallest piece of bread and cheese, or I can support myself no longer. Are we, or are we not, to have a morsel of breakfast this day?" He cut off about an inch long piece of cheese from that identical double Gloucester that you yourself, Mr. North, chose for me, on your last visit to London, and declared that it had been rendered most poisonous by the anotta used to colour it. "There is here, Mrs. Trollope, a quantity of red lead--Have you, madam, never experienced after devouring half a pound of this cheese, an indescribable pain in the region of the abdomen and of the stomach, accompanied with a feeling of tension, which occasioned much restlessness, anxiety, and repugnance to food? Have you never felt, after a Welsh rabbit of it, a very violent cholic?" "Yes! yes!--often, often!" I exclaimed. "And did you use pepper and mustard?" "I did even so." "Let me see the castors." I rose from my knees--and brought them out. He puffed out a little pepper into the palm of his hand, and went on as usual. "This, madam, is spurious pepper altogether--it is made up of oil cakes, (the residue of linseed, from which the oil has been pressed,) common clay, and, perhaps, a small portion of Cayenne pepper, (itself probably artificial or adulterated,) to make it pungent. But now for the mustard"--at this juncture the servant maid came in, and I told her that I was poisoned--she set up a prodigious scream, and Mr. Accum let fall the mustard pot on the carpet. But it is needless for me to prolong the shocking narrative. They assisted me to get into bed, from which I never more expect to rise. My eyes have been opened, and I see the horrors of my situation. I now remember the most excruciating cholic, and divers other pangs which I thought nothing of at the time, but which must have been the effect of the deleterious solids and liquids which I was daily introducing into my stomach.--It appears that I have never, so much as once, either eat or drank a real thing--that is, a thing being what it pretended to be. Oh! the weight of lead and copper that has passed thro' my body! Oh! too, the gravel and the sand! But is impossible to deceive me now. This very evening some bread was brought to me--Bread! I cried out indignantly--Take the vile deception out of my sight. Yes, my dear Kit, it was a villanous loaf of clay and alum! But my resolution is fixed, and I hope to die in peace. Henceforth, I shall not allow one particle of matter to descend into my stomach! Already I feel myself "of the earth, earthy."--Mr. Accum seldom leaves my bedside--and yesterday brought with him several eatables and drinkables, which he assured me he had analyzed, subjected to the test-act, and found them to be conformists. But I have no trust in chymistry. His quarter-loaf looked like a chip cut off the corner of a stone block. It was a manifest _sham loaf_. After being deluded in my Hollands, bit in my brandy, and having found my muffins a mockery, never more shall I be thrown off my guard. I am waxing weaker and weaker--so farewell! Bewildering indeed has been the destiny of
P.S.--I have opened my mistress' letter to add, that she died this evening about a quarter past eight, in excruciating torments.
VARIATION OF THE NEEDLE.
It is thought by some surveyors that a change has taken place in the variation of the needle, and that the power of attraction is returning to the east or right hand. For my own satisfaction, I have for some years past been endeavouring to ascertain the truth of the fact, and my observations for the last ten years past require only 20' to be added to strike the former object. It is well known that formerly surveyors made an allowance to the west or left hand, of one degree, for every 10 or 11 years for variation, and it now comes short 40' of the common allowance, so that from the result of my observations it appears evidently that the variation is not on the return, but still increasing, but so slow and variable every year, that it cannot be ascertained, unless by a series of experiments. To corroborate the following observations, I would remark, that I have lately read (I think in the Encyclopædia) of a curious gentlemen in London, who with a nice instrument, monthly for a number of years, made observations upon the variation, and he seldom found the needle cut the same degree and minutes, but varying sometimes to the right, others to the left: sometimes more, sometimes less, which shows that the attractive power is variable.
On the 18th of July, 1810, an object on the North mountain, 3 and a half miles off, bore
N. 61° 00' W.
8th July, 1811, the same object bore 60 50
14th July, 1812, do. 60 50
10th July, 1813, do. 60 50
8th July, 1814, do. 61 10
12th July, 1815, do. 61 15
13th July, 1816, do. 61 15
15th July, 1817, do. 61 15
14th July, 1818, do. 61 30
15th July, 1819, do. 61 25
10th July, 1820, do. 61 20
From whatever cause the variation of the needle arises, it evidently is affected by a something within our earth; but whether from the motion of two attractive poles, or four, as has been maintained by great men, or whether by a concentric globe of elementary particles composed of electricity and refined iron, adjusted and organized in a particular way, are all hypotheses. The phenomenon of the dipping needle is a curiosity, and sufficient to satisfy us that the power of attraction is about the centre of the earth, for let a needle be truly balanced on a centre pin in our latitude, then give it the polarity necessary, the north end will dip about fifty degrees;--move it to the equator it will become again level;--carry it still southward, the south end will dip.
When effects are obvious, man more curious than wise, endeavours to search out the cause, and in some things we may be successful,--others are beyond our knowledge, and hid in the mysteries of Nature's God.
_Mercersburgh, (Penn.)_ } _July 18, 1820._ }
COMPARATIVE MORALITY OF DIFFERENT COUNTIES IN ENGLAND AND WALES.
The following interesting table is copied from Mr. Myers' "New System of Geography," a work now publishing in monthly parts, and which, from the manner of its execution, promises to supply an important desideratum, in that branch of literature, created by the recent political changes upon the continent of Europe.
A Table, showing the proportion which the number of persons committed to prison in each county of England and Wales, bears to the whole population; and thus illustrating the influence of local circumstances on the morals of the people. The average of the commitments is taken for thirteen years, viz. from 1805 to 1817, inclusive, and the population, as stated in the returns of 1811.
_Counties._ _One in_
Anglesea, 18,522 Bedford, 2,623 Berks, 1,618 Brecon, 3,384 Bucks, 2,562 Cambridge, 2,386 Cardigan, 13,612 Caermarthen, 7,343 Caernarvon, 9,867 Chester, 1,638 Cornwall, 5,287 Cumberland, 3,904 Denbigh, 7,077 Derby, 3,435 Devon, 1,996 Dorset, 2,292 Durham, 4,337 Essex, 1,435 Flint, 8,399 Glamorgan, 4,551 Gloucester, 1,834 Hants, 1,230 Hereford, 1,438 Herts, 1,636 Huntingdon, 1,431 Kent, 1,385 Lancaster, 1,083 Leicester, 2,161 Lincoln, 2,164 Merioneth, 13,377 Middlesex, 588 Monmouth, 2,469 Mongomery, 3,534 Norfolk, 1,809 Northamton, 2,405 Northumberland, 3,037 Nottingham, 1,694 Oxford, 2,151 Pembroke, 5,669 Radnor, 3,672 Rutland, 2,696 Salop, 2,263 Stafford, 1,938 Somerset, 1,369 Suffolk, 1,731 Surrey, 1,261 Sussex, 2,422 Warwick, 989 Westmoreland, 5,642 Wilts, 1,969 Worcester, 1,668 York, 3,002
For the whole of England, the proportion is 1 in 1,483; for Wales, 1 in 6,213; and for both England and Wales, 1 in 1,554.
From Sketches of French Manners and Customs.
The women do not, as in England, employ themselves solely in household and nursery affairs, but they mix themselves in all the cares of their husbands, and assist them in their trade and business, whatever it may be.--Thus they are constantly found in the counting houses and shops; and they know as much, and often more, of the details of a trade, than their husbands. In Dieppe, every variety of shop and trade had a woman assisting in it, who, from her appearance, might generally be considered as the mistress of the family. At a blacksmith's shop, for instance, I saw a neatly dressed woman, with a very clean cap shoeing a horse; and, passing a second time, I saw her filing at a vice. I expressed my astonishment to the neighbours, but they seemed rather disposed to laugh at me, than to join in my laugh at the woman. I learnt that she was a widow, and thus kept up her husband's trade, to rear a large family. In Paris, I complimented a pretty wife of an eminent bookseller for her knowledge of the prices of paper, printing, and engraving, in which she several times corrected errors of her husband. I remarked, that the French ladies must have great talents thus to learn a trade in the honey moon, which had employed their husbands during an apprenticeship of seven years; and that I supposed she would be equally expert at any other trade, if, on becoming a widow, she married a husband in some other line. "Ah! Monsieur," said she, "we endeavour to assist our spouses in every way in our power;--it is our only pleasure; their cares are our cares, and their interests are ours; and, if it is our calamity to become widows, and we meet with another good husband, we do the best we can for him also."
When I look upon the tombs of the great, every emotion of envy dies; when I read the epitaphs of the beautiful, every inordinate desire forsakes me; when I meet with the grief of parents upon a tombstone, my heart melts with compassion; when I see the tombs of the parents themselves, I feel how vain it is to grieve for those whom we must quickly follow; when I behold rival kings lying side by side, or the holy men who divided the world with their contests and disputes, I reflect with sorrow and astonishment on the frivolous competitions, factions, and debates of mankind; when I read the several dates of the tombs,--of some who died yesterday, and some six hundred years ago, I am reminded of that day when all mankind will be contemporaries, and make their appearance together.
STATISTICS OF EUROPE.
From a French paper.
Europe contains in superfices, 153,559 square geographic miles, of 15 to a degree, or only 1116 of the continental superfices of the whole earth. Its population is estimated at 180 millions and a half; which gives, one with another, 1177 inhabitants to each square geographic mile. It should always be remembered, that this population is very unequally divided; for if in the lowest countries, for example, we reckon 4550 inhabitants to a square mile, Russia contains but 447; Sweden, 362; and Norway only 118.
Europe contains 17 nations: 1st nations, speaking the dialect derived from the Latin language, 61 millions; 2d, Teutonic nations, 54 millions; 3d, Sclavonian, 46 millions; 4th, Celts, 3,720,000; 5th, Tartars, 3,500,000; 6th, Magvans, 5,250,000; 7th, Greeks, 2,100,000; 8th, Finns, 1,800,000; 9th, Cimmerians, 1,610,000; 10th, Basques, 630,000; 11h, Arnauts, 300,000; 12th, Maltese, 80,000; 13th, Circassians, 8,000; 14th, Samoides, 2,100; 15th, Jews, 2,660,000; 16th, Gipsies, 340,000; and 17th, Armenians, 150,000.
The Roman Catholics are in number about 100 millions; the Protestants of different communions about 42 millions; the schismatic Greeks, 32 millions; the Mennonists 240,000; the Methodists 190,000; the Unitarians 50,000; the Quakers 40,000; the Mohammedans 2,630,000; the Jews 2,600,000; and the Herrnhutters (Moravians) 40,000.
In classing out each state according to its superfices, its population, its ordinary revenues, and the contributive proportion of each individual towards the public burdens, we find that they should occupy the following order.
_Superfices._--1st, Russia; 2d, Sweden; 3d, Austria; 4th, France; 5th, Turkey; 6th, Spain; 7th, Great Britain; 8th, Prussia; 9th, Germany; 10th, Denmark; 11th, the Two Sicilies; 12th, Portugal; 13th, Sardinia; 14th, the Netherlands; 15th, Switzerland; 16th, the Ecclesiastical States; and 17th, Tuscany, &c.
_Population._--1st, Russia; second, France; 3d, Austria; 4th, Great Britain; 5th, Germany; 6th, Spain; 7th, Prussia; 8th, Turkey; 9th, the Two Sicilies; 10th, the Netherlands; 11th, Sardinia; 12th, Portugal; 13th, Sweden; 14th, the Ecclesiastial States; 15th, Switzerland; 16th, Denmark; 17th, Tuscany, &c.
_Revenue._--1st, Great Britain; 2d, France; 3d, Russia; 4th, Austria; 5th, Germany; 6th, the Netherlands; 7th, Prussia; 8th, Spain; 9th, Turkey; 10th, Portugal; 11th, the Two Sicilies; 12th, Sardinia; 13th, Sweden; 14th, Denmark; 15th, the Ecclesiastical States; 16th, Tuscany; and 17th, Switzerland, &c.
_Contributive Portion on each Individual towards the public charges._---This last calculation is the most curious. It demonstrates what each individual pays annually one with another,--namely, in England, 52f. 5c.; in the Netherlands, 38f. 5c.; in France, 19f. 71c.; in Germany, 16f. 6c.; in Russia, 15f. 88c.; in Denmark, 14f 60c; Portugal, 13f. 85c.; in Spain, 17f. 60c; in Sardinia, 12f. 5c; in Austria, 11f. 68c.; in the Ecclesiastical States, 9f. 40c. in Sweden, 9f. 31c. in Tuscany, 9f. 12c; in Turkey, 9f. 4c.; in the Two Sicilies, 7f. 97c.; and in Switzerland, 5f. 47c. This last is the weakest of all European states.
_Mode of engraving union steel and then transferring the same to steel or other metals._--This invention deservedly demands while it receives the admiration of every lover of the Fine Arts; and at the same time it presents the means of perpetuating whatever is beautiful in the art of engraving, and will probably produce a general refinement in the state of the public by furnishing engravings of the most beautiful kinds, at the same cost as those of inferior execution.
This invention promises to be of great advantage to some of our manufacturers, particularly that of pottery, which may now be embellished with beautiful engravings, so as to place the successful competition of other nations at a more distant period. It may also be applied with great advantage to _calico_ printing, by producing entire new patterns upon the cylinders from which they are printed, an object of great importance to our manufacturing interest. These are among its obvious applications; but as a means of rendering forgery _impracticable_, it claims the attention of statesmen and the gratitude of philanthropists, who shudder at the hundreds of victims which are now immolated to the laws by the facility with which they may be violated.
The association of Mr. Charles Heath with the American inventors is a fortunate circumstance, as it affords a pledge, that all which is exquisite in art will be combined with the ingenious mechanical inventions of Mr. Perkins, and the perseverance of Mr. Fairman; and the means of conferring every desirable perfection on various applications of the Siderographic process.
_Great Britain and the U. States._--(A Contrast.)--A correspondent observes, that from an article in the last Inquirer, taken from a London paper, it is computed that the expense of the approaching coronation of his Britannic Majesty, George IV., will exceed eight hundred thousand pounds sterling.
This, at $4 44 cents the pound sterling, amounts to the moderate sum of three millions five hundred and fifty two thousand dollars, of the currency of the United States.
This sum would pay the salaries of the President of the U. States for a succession of _one hundred and forty-two years_,--and leave a balance of two thousand dollars remaining.
_English Churn._--An improvement has been made in England in the construction of the dasher of the churn, which "is made to turn on a pivot, fixed in the lower end of the handle, and consists of two pieces set crosswise, so as to form four wings, diagonally shaped, and something similar to those of a windmill. Let the wings be about two inches wide, proportioned in length to the dimensions of the churn, and of such a level as gives them an inclination of about forty-five degrees.
The pivot on which the wings turn to be of iron, otherwise it will soon wear out."
The above plan is more efficacious than any other, and requires the operation to be moderately performed lest the butter come too soon, and therefore become swetted.
_Watermelon Sirup._--Those of our readers who may not be acquainted with the fact, but yet are friendly to domestic economy, are informed, that one gallon of watermelon-juice will, by boiling, afford one pint of pure sirup, preferable either to honey or molasses, for domestic or medical purposes. The trial is easily made, and the expense trifling.
_Patent Churn._--A churn has been invented by a young man in Vermont, which answers every purpose with a very trifling labour. It stands perpendicularly, and is perfectly tight.--The operation is performed by a person sitting near the churn and working the machine by each hand, as you work a pump. The dasher is turned by means of two leather straps, which are fastened at one end of the upright cylinder, and passing each once round it in opposite directions, are fastened at the other end of the handle on each side of the upright. So that the stroke with one hand turns the dasher once round, and that with the other turns it back.
_Socrates._--One day when Alcibiades was boasting of his wealth and the great estates in his possession, (which generally blow up the pride of young people of quality,) Socrates carried him to a geographical map, and asked him to find Attica. It was so small, it could scarcely be discerned upon the draft; he found it, however, though with some difficulty. But, upon being desired to point out his own estate there--"It is too small," says he, "to be distinguished in so little a space."
"See then," replied Socrates, "how much you are affected about an imperceptible point of the earth."
_Georgetown, (Ky.) August 3._--A white crow was lately shot by Col. Rhodes Thompson, at his residence, on Elkhorn, about two and a half miles from this town. It was examined by several scientific gentlemen, and pronounced to be of the crow species; it resembled the common black crow in every thing but its colour, which was of a dingy white.--Col. Thompson had observed it for some time among a flock of black crows, and had ascertained its note to be the same as theirs.
_Scotch Adventurers._--The character which the Scotch have acquired, beyond almost any other people, for the art of pushing their fortune abroad, was never perhaps more singularly illustrated than by the following anecdote, which Dr. Anderson relates in his "Bee," on the authority of a baronet of scientific eminence.
The Russians and Turks, in the war of 1739, having diverted themselves long enough in the contest, agreed to treat for peace. The commisioners, for this purpose, were marshal Gen. Keith, on the part of Russia, and the grand vizier on that of the Turks. These personages met, and carried on their negotiations by means of interpreters. When all was concluded, they rose to separate: the marshal made his bow, with his hat in his hand, and the vizier his salam, with his turban on his head. But when these ceremonies of taking leave were over, the vizier turned suddenly, and coming up to marshal Keith, took him cordially by the hand, and in the broadest Scotch dialect, declared warmly that it made him "unco happy to meet a countryman in his exalted station." Keith started with astonishment, eager for an explanation of the mystery, when the vizier added, "Dinna be surprised, mon, I'm o' the same country wi' yoursel'. I mind weel seeing you and your brother, when boys, passin by to the school at Kirkaldy; my father, Sir, was _bellman of Kirkaldy_." What more extraordinary can be imagined, than to behold in the plenipotentiaries of two mighty nations, two foreign adventurers, natives of the same mountainous territory; nay, of the very same village!--What indeed more extraordinary, unless it be the spectacle of a Scotchman turned Turk for the sake of honours, held on the tenure of a caprice from which even Scotch prudence can be no guarantee!
_Garrick._--Mr. Twiss, a romancing traveller, was talking of a church he had seen in Spain which was a mile and a half long. "Bless me, (cried Garrick,) how broad was it?" "About ten yards," said Twiss. "This is, you'll observe, gentlemen, (said Garrick to the company,) not a round lie, but differs from his other stories, which are generally as broad as they are long."
_Franklin Donation Fund._--The trustees of the fund established by Dr. Franklin, for the benefit of young married mechanics, in Boston, give notice, that they will make loans, in sums not exceeding 200 dollars to one individual, on the terms prescribed by Dr. Franklin, viz.
"The applicant must be a married mechanic, under the age of 25 years, who has faithfully served an apprenticeship of five years at least, in the town of Boston. He must produce a certificate of his moral character, from at least two respectable citizens of said town, who are willing to become bound with him, to the trustees, for the repayment of the sum loaned, by annual instalments of 10 per cent. with interest annually, at the rate of 5 per cent."
_Flour._--Flour has recently been sold at Cincinnati for $2.25 per bbl. "good money." The crops of grain have been exceedingly heavy in the western country.
_Herculaneum Manuscripts._--Sir Humphrey Davy has had great success in unrolling the manuscripts of Herculaneum and Pompeii. In a short time the contents of each roll will be known, as well as its title, which is generally found in the interiour.
_Whaling!_--It would seem by the following articles from the Boston Patriot, that the invention of the torpedo by the late Robert Fulton, to destroy enemies' ships in the late war, is about to be made use of for another valuable purpose, viz. blowing up whales!
"It was hardly to have been expected, that these destructive engines should have been adopted in the prosecution of one of the most thriving branches of business in which navigation is now employed. Yet, we are informed that a vessel has recently been fitted at New Bedford, bound on a whaling cruise, with an apparatus on board for the purpose of taking whales by _blowing them up_.
"Torpedoes, of arrow form, are thrown from a gun on board the vessel, which are calculated to sink into the body of the whale, and there explode. As the experiment has not yet been fully tested, we think its success, to say, the least, is problematical."
_New York school fund, &c._--We have a long and interesting statement in the New York papers, of the funds set apart for literary purposes. They chiefly consist of bonds and mortgages, for money loaned, a considerable quantity of bank stocks, and sundry valuable tracts of land. The amounts are as follows:
The fund for the support of "common schools" is equal to $1,232,908, and its annual product about $78,964.
The fund for the "promotion of literature" amounts to $201,439, and its income is $5,288. This fund is divided among the colleges, in proportion to their scholars. Both of these funds are on the increase as to value and product.
Besides,--the occasional grants of the legislature for literary purposes since 1790, amounts to $1,189,056. And the general aggregate of appropriations, for the last thirty years, including escheated lands, schools lots, fees, &c., but excluding the annual revenue derived from the permanent funds, is estimated to amount to 3,000,000 of dollars!
_Premiums._--At a meeting of the Merino Society in London, 12th May, after awarding the prizes to the best show of sheep and superfine broadcloth, the premium of ten guineas for worsted yarn, was adjudged to Mr. J. Head, of Kirkstall, near Leeds, for one pound of wool spun by a newly invented machine, which was superior in fineness to any heretofore seen, and peculiarly adapted for the finest bombazeens, &c. It produced 95 hanks of 530 yards each in length, equal to 30 miles and 400 yards, to a pound of wool.
_Salt mines of Meurthe._--The researches for the discovery of rock salt, which commenced in July last, at Moyenire, in the department of La Meurthe, in France, are carried on to advantage. After exploring to the depth of 200 feet, and reaching the first layer, which is 11 feet in thickness, the workmen had to perforate a bed of gypsum and clay of five hundred and forty-six feet, when they came to a second stratum of salt, eight feet in thickness. It is intended to remove the researches to two other neighbouring points, to ascertain the breadth and magnitude of the whole bed. The two points form a triangle nearly equilateral, each side of which may be about 6 or 700 toises in length. One of these points is the city of Vic, and the other to the south of it. On this latter point they have already pierced to the depth of 26 feet of vegetable earth: the orifice of each bore is 3½ inches, which constantly fills up with fresh water. The salt of the first bed is extremely white, and transparent as rock crystal. It is likewise very pure, and free from every noxious or terrene substance. The second appears to be intermixed with gypseous or argillaceous substance, but a very small proportion. This salt is brown, not unlike a clouded flint; both the kinds are very compact, well crystallized, the fractures cubical, and the saline taste superior to that of any salt obtained by evaporation. It contains but very little of muriate of magnesia, or of sulphate of lime.
_More silver!_--We have the following account of the discovery of a silver mine, in a paper printed at Salem, Indiana, July 10.--"We have been informed by gentlemen of credibility, that there has been a silver mine lately discovered in the late purchase in this state. The circumstances relating to it are these: A few months ago, a gentleman near the boundary line, was informed by an Indian, that there was a mine of this kind somewhere, but refused to tell him where it was, unless the man would pay him fifty dollars, a horse, a gun and several blankets, which the man did, and was taken to the place, and brought away several pounds of the ore. He has since, we are told, brought away about 300 pounds. He refuses to tell where it is, but says there is at least three wagon loads already cast into bars by the Indians, which he intends to bring away. We have seen (so have several citizens of Salem) some of the ore, and should suppose it at least two-thirds silver. The ore is so pure that it can be drawn out with the hammer into bars of almost any size, and it is thought by some to be sufficiently pure in its natural state. From the representation of it, the mine is inexhaustible, and in a situation difficult to be discovered."
In England, on the 19th June, at his house, Spring-grove, near Hounslow, the venerable president of the Royal Society, the Right Hon. Sir JOSEPH BANKS, G. C. B. &c. &c. &c. The loss to science by the demise of this excellent man and liberal patron will be long and severely felt. Sir Joseph had been for a long time labouring under a most distressing illness; for some years he had been deprived of the use of his lower extremities, and rendered so feeble as to be lifted from his room to his carriage. He possessed a princely fortune, of which he assigned a large portion to the encouragement of science, particularly natural history, private and public charities, and domestic hospitality.--Also, on the 31st May, I. BRADLEY, the Yorkshire giant:--when dead he measured nine feet in length, and three feet over the shoulders.
FOR THE RURAL MAGAZINE.
Of JOHN LOGAN, the author of the following touching stanzas, it is well observed by his biographer CHALMERS, that it would be difficult to produce, from the whole range of English poetry, any thing more exquisitely tender and pathetic, than some of his productions.--He died in London, December, 1788, in the fortieth year of his age. His end is described as edifying. When he became too weak to hold a book, we are told he employed his time in hearing such young persons as visited him read the Scriptures.
THE BRAES OF YARROW.
"Thy braes were bonny, Yarrow stream! When first on them I met my lover, Thy braes how dreary, Yarrow stream! When now thy waves his body cover! For ever now, O Yarrow stream! Thou art to me a stream of sorrow; For never on thy banks shall I Behold my love, the flower of Yarrow.
"He promised me a milk-white steed, To bear me to his father's bowers; He promised me a little page, To 'squire me to his father's towers; He promised me a wedding ring,-- The wedding day was fix'd to-morrow;-- Now he is wedded to his grave, Alas, his watery grave, in Yarrow!
"Sweet were his words when last we met; My passion I as freely told him! Clasp'd in his arms, I little thought That I should never more behold him! Scarce was he gone, I saw his ghost; It vanish'd with a shriek of sorrow; Thrice did the water-wraith ascend, And gave a doleful groan thro' Yarrow!
"His mother from the window look'd, With all the longing of a mother; His little sister weeping walk'd The green-wood path to meet her brother: They sought him east, they sought him west, They sought him all the forest through; They only saw the cloud of night, They only heard the roar of Yarrow!
"No longer from thy window look, Thou hast no son, thou tender mother; No longer walk thou lovely maid; Alas, thou hast no more a brother! No longer seek him east or west, And search no more the forest through; For wandering in the night so dark, He fell a lifeless corse in Yarrow.
"The tear shall never leave my cheek, No other youth shall be my marrow; I'll seek thy body in the stream, And then with thee I'll sleep in Yarrow." The tear did never leave her cheek, No other youth became her marrow; She found his body in the stream, And now with him she sleeps in Yarrow.
From Barton's Poems.
Dost thou not love, in the season of spring, To twine thee a flowery wreath, And to see the beautiful birch-tree fling It shade on the grass beneath? Its glossy leaf and its silvery stem; Oh! dost thou not love to look on them?
And dost thou not love, when leaves are greenest, And summer has just begun, When in the silence of moon light thou leanest, Where glist'ning waters run, To see, by that gentle and peaceful beam, The willow bend down to the sparkling stream?
And oh! in a lovely autumnal day, When leaves are changing before thee, Do not nature's charms, as they slowly decay, Shed their own mild influence o'er thee? And hast thou not felt, as thou stood'st to gaze, The touching lesson such scene displays?
It should be thus at an age like thine: And it has been thus with me; When the freshness of feeling and heart were mine, As they never more can be: Yet think not I ask thee to pity my lot, Perhaps I see beauty where thou dost not.
Hast thou seen in winter's stormiest day, The trunk of a blighted oak, Not dead, but sinking in slow decay, Beneath time's resistless stroke, Round which a luxuriant Ivy had grown, And wreath'd it with verdure no longer its own?
Perchance thou hast seen this sight, and then, As I, at thy years might do, Pass'd carelessly by, nor turn'd again That scathed wreck to view; But now I can draw, from that mould'ring tree, Thoughts which are soothing and dear to me,
O smile not! nor think it a worthless thing, If it be with instruction fraught; That which will closest and longest cling, Is alone worth a serious thought! Should aught be unlovely which thus can shed Grace on the dying, and leaves not the dead?
Now, in thy youth, beseech of HIM Who giveth, upbraiding not, That his light in thy heart become not dim, And his love be unforgot; And thy God, in the darkest of days, will be, Greenness, and beauty, and strength to thee?
TO A COUNTRY GIRL,
Who expressed a wish to lead a town life.
Sweet Mary, sigh not for the town, Where vice and folly reign; Spurn not the humble homespun gown That suits the rural plain.
In ev'ry street the city's glare Doth simple hearts betray: And simple hearts, who wander there, Are sure to lose their way.
The tradesman plays his wily part, To take the stranger in: The profligate displays his art, The modest maid to win:
He lures her to perdition's brink By ev'ry treach'rous scheme, Then leaves the hapless wretch to sink In pleasure's guilty stream!
The flaunting crowd, that seem so gay, May please you for a while; But joy with these doth rarely stay, Or sweet contentment's smile.
The splendid dome that proudly rears Its gilded roof on high, Full oft conceals pale Envy's tears, And Disappointment's sigh.
There foul Ambition loves to dwell, False Pride, and lust of Fame, There Malice and Revenge rebel Against the good man's name.
Ah! little do you know, sweet maid, What are the city spoils, Where villains ply the canting trade, And fraud is drest in smiles.
Then, Mary, sigh no more to rove, Or change your native fields, The rural walk, the verdant grove, For all the city yields.
And when some swain of soul sincere, Shall seek your love to gain, Trust to his faith, nor ever fear, That you shall trust in vain.
So shall your rustic life be spent, With every blessing crown'd, Within your doors, shall sweet Content, And faithful Love be found.
And when your infant offspring rise, A mother's smile to greet, The joy that sparkles in their eyes, Shall your own bliss complete!
Your tide of life, thus even flowing, Will ebb at last, 'tis true; When calm, with Hope your bosom glowing, You'll bid the world adieu!
The following stanzas are from the pen of the poet Montgomery. They have never before appeared in print; we having been favoured with them by a friend who received them from the poet. They evince, as indeed do all Mr. M.'s writings, that he is not only a good poet, but a good man.
Prayer is the soul's sincere desire, Utter'd or unexpressed; The motion of a hidden fire, That trembles in the breast.
Prayer is the burden of a sigh, The falling of a tear; The upward glancing of an eye, When none but God is near.
Prayer is the simplest form of speech. That infant lips can try; Prayer the sublimest strains that reach. The Majesty on high.
Prayer is the Christian's vital breath, The Christian's native air; His watchword at the gates of death, He enters Heaven with prayer.
Prayer is the contrite sinner's voice. Returning from his ways; While angels in their songs rejoice. And cry, "Behold he prays."
In prayer on earth, the saints are one-- In word, in deed, in mind; When with the Father and the Son Sweet fellowship they find.
Nor prayer is made on earth alone, The Holy Spirit pleads; And Jesus on the eternal throne, For sinners interceds.
O! Thou, by whom we come to God, The life, the truth, the way, The path of prayer thyself hast trod-- Lord, teach us how to pray!
BANK NOTE EXCHANGE,
At PHILADELPHIA--_Aug. 29th, 1820._
Per cent Disc't.
U. S. BRANCH BANK Notes, 1½
RHODE ISLAND--generally, 1
MASSACHUSETTS--Boston, 1 Country generally, 4-5
NEW JERSEY--generally, par.
PENNSYLVANIA--Farmer's Bank, of } Lancaster; Easton; Montgomery } par. County; Chester } County, at Westchester, } New Hope; Northampton, 1 Susquehanna Bridge Company, 2½ York; Chambersburg, 2 Northumberland; Union; } 17 Columbia Bank, at Milton, } Centre, 17½ Meadville. 60 Farmers & Mechanics' Bank } 25 at Pittsburg, }
DELAWARE--generally, par. Commercial Bank of Del. par. Branch of ditto at Milford, 4 Laurel Bank, 50
MARYLAND--Baltimore Banks, ½ Baltimore City Bank, 5 Annapolis; Hagerstown, 2-2½
VIRGINIA--Country generally, 2-2½ N. W. Bank, at Wheeling, 8
COLUMBIA DISTRICT--Mech. Bank } 3 of Alexandria, } Country generally, 1
NORTH CAROLINA--State Bank at } 4 Raleigh, and Branches, } Cape Fear; Newbern, 4½
SOUTH CAROLINA--State Banks, generally, 2
GEORGIA--State Banks, generally, 3 Augusta Bridge Company, 75
TENNESSEE--Few sales at any price.
KENTUCKY--Kentucky Bank, and } 30 Branches, }
OHIO--Marietta; Steubenville 12½ Bank of Chillicothe, 5 Country generally, 20-50
RAIN GUAGE AT PHILADELPHIA.
In. hun. July 27, Shower, 0. 11 28 & 29, Rain, 0. 32 30, do. 0. 36 31, do. 0. 35 Aug. 1, Rain, 0. 50 5, Shower, 0. 20 11, do. 0. 07 14, Rain, 0. 48 15, do. 0. 46 16, do. 0. 20 17, Shower, 0. 07
PRICES CURRENT.--_Aug. 29, 1820._
Per D.C. D.C.
Beef. Philad. Mess, (pl.) _bbl._ 13.00 Butter, Fresh _lb._ 0.12 " 0.20 Cotton Yarn, No. 10, _lb._ 0.36 Cotton, (Louisiana) " 0.18 " 0.22 Flax, Clean, (scarce) " 0.16 " 0.18 Firewood, Hickory, _cord_, 5.00 " 6.00 Oak, " 3.50 " 4.00 Flour--Wheat, P. S. F. _bbl._ 4.50 Rye, " 2.75 Corn Meal, 3.00 Grain--Wheat, _bush._ 0.85 " 0.90 Rye, " 0.45 " 0.55 Corn, Pa. 0.48 " 0.58 Oats, " 0.20 " 0.30 Hams--Jersey, _lb._ 0.11 " 0.13 Leather--Sole, _lb._ 0.24 " 0.30 Upper, undrs'd. _side_, 2.75 " 3.50 Plaster of Paris, _ton_, 4.75 " 5.00 Wool--Merino, Clean, _lb._ 0.75 Do. in Grease, " 0.40 Common, " 0.50
☞ Should any of our subscribers wish any particular articles noticed in the above Prices Current, he will have it attended to.
STATE OF THE THERMOMETER.
9 o'cl. 12 o'cl. 3 o'cl. July 24, 71 73 76 25, 74 73 81 26, 79 82 83 27, 79 83 81 28, 79 81 83 29, 79 81 78 31, 78 84 81 Aug. 1, 79 82 83 2, 75 78 81 3, 77 78 80 4, 77 78 81 5, 77 79 78 7, 74 77 75 8, 73 77 79 9, 75 79 83 10, 79 83 87 11, 81 85 89 12, 84 89 92 14, 76 79 79 15, 74 74 78 16, 73 75 76 17, 74 79 81 18, 73 75 77 19, 71 76 76 21, 73 75 76 22, 74 78 79 23, 75 77 80 24, 74 76 76 25, 75 78 80 26, 77 -- --
In our last Number, page 320, for "John Byron," read JOHN BYROM.
In page 317, under the head "Rules for Milking Cows," for "ten gallons of milk at a time," read TEN QUARTS, &c.
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