Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

sentation of any kind, I have, by extracts from papers and speeches, as much as possible, made the Americans describe themselves.

The extraordinary development of energy, liberty, and intellectual life, in the United States of America, at once strike the traveller as something great-something new, that is seen in no other nation on the face of the globe. This, and the friendly feeling everywhere evinced towards the British visitor, make travelling through the States very agreeable indeed, and rub off not a few prejudices. Doubts and difficulties may occur to him, but an impartial observer cannot avoid seeing in the people of the United States a truly great nation, exciting in the highest degree his interest, admiration, and warmest wishes for their welfare.

LONDON, March, 1861.

SKETCHES IN NORTH AMERICA.

CHAPTER I.

YANKEE.

“Would he were fatter!"—Shakspeare.

“ Jonathan may be described as the finished model of the Anglo-Saxon, of which John Bull is the rough cast.”American Magazine.

AFTER a long sojourn in that dullest of all dull w places, Halifax, Nova Scotia, I was at last re

leased for a time, and set out to have a peep at Brother Jonathan. Nova Scotia is almost an island, the neck of the peninsula which connects it with the mainland being only sixteen miles in breadth, and it is difficult getting out of Halifax to any place worth going to. The nearest place of any interest is Boston, in the United States, and the most direct way of escape thither from Halifax is by steamer or sailing-packet, a voyage of nearly two days in the British mail-steamers, the best vessels that run between the two places. There is another

B

route to Boston, by railway to Windsor, on the Bay of Fundy, across the bay by steamer to the city of St. John, New Brunswick, and thence by a coasting steamer to Boston, or to Portland, in Maine, from which there is railway communication to Boston; the whole journey being accomplished in about three days, of which a night is spent at St. John.

When so much money has been spent on railways in British America, the traveller is disappointed to find that there is no railway route from Halifax to the United States, nor even to Canada. Railways in Nova Scotia have been adapted, not so much to the wants of the country as to the purpose of securing influence and votes for a political party. There is little traffic in the country, little prospect of any material increase, and a small population of about three hundred thousand, thinly scattered over a country more than half as large as Scotland; while every part being so near the sea, the coastingtrade will always retain a large share of the transport business. Passenger traffic with the great nations near them, and the railway connection of Halifax (the port on the continent nearest Europe), with Canada and the United States, were the only chances for railways to be of use in the lower British provinces. Instead,

« ZurückWeiter »