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Gershom quailed. So did the girl for a mo- less a fact, that as he stood looking from the ment. She walked weakly away from him, with wet darkness to Hitty, and from Hitty back to a little moan like a hurt child's, not considering the dark wetness, and from both into his future, whether it were dignified or not-acting herself he felt himself to be suddenly aggrieved, afflictout, as she always did.
ed, irreparably injured. It is undeniable that “Don't, Hitty !” he whispered, hoarsely; at that moment he would rather have had Hitty “don't! I never meant to leave you for any for his wife than any other woman in the world. other woman on earth. We can be happy to- "I believe there is something in the Bible," gether yet. I know I am not worthy, but if said Hitty, when he turned, in silence still, to you would come back to me-"
go, “about the kiss of peace. You must never “I can never come back to you." Hitty kiss me now; but that you may not think I spoke distinctly. She stepped up to him, but mind it much, dear, or ever think I blame you, with a certain shining in her eyes which warn- or ever wish you had not told me, I should like ed him not to touch so much as the fold of her - if you please-to kiss you good-by." dress. “I can never come to you again. But, She put both hands upon his shoulders and standing right here where I can see you, I very gravely kissed him on the forehead. He should like to hear all about it, if I can." received the touch mutely, and went down be
He told her then, I believe, as best he could, tween the rows of wet flowers with uncovered the story of his last three years, brokenly, in an head. agony of distress and self-abasement greater far Hitty stood to watch him till he had passed than hers. When it was all finished, I have quite beyond the line of light and wet gravel, been told that she touched him very gently on and listened a little to the dripping from the the shoulder, and said:
hemlock branches, and noticed the creeper star"My poor Gershom! My poor boy !" and ing from the porch. Then she went in and cried a little-her first and only tears that night shut the door. -for his sake
“It was all one of my blunders, Gershom. For just about four weeks young Bell kept Don't fret about it. I should have known, I away from Xerxes, thinking never to go back, should have known! All these years you have and hardly caring whether he did or not. But been wearing and worrying on with me. All time took care of all that, as it must- and these years you have tried so hard, I see, to should. Happiness is of God's own rare givlove me as you ought to love your wife. Come, ing, and He never gave regret or remorse to see, now, how it is; you did not see; you did mar it. not understand. You meant to marry me for He had saved Gershom Bell as by fire from my sake all this long, long while. Gershom, tronging that little girl with one of the greatif you had done that I should have hated you! est wrongs that man can work on woman. You would have been wicked, wicked, wicked! This he learned, I hope, at last. It was for my sake you should have told me! And she? It was for my sake you should not have let me A very few women in the world would never think of you for one day, nor hour, unless I was have loved or married—I mean loved in sinthe dearest thing in all the world to you. It is cerity and married in honor and content-anfor my sake that I must never, never be your other man. The chances are, I should think, in wife. It has all been a terrible mistake; but the ratio of nineteen to one, that Hitty is not you did not know. Never mind! There! Say one of them. good-by now, and go, for I am tired."
He obeyed her, bewildered and dumb. In the doorway he turned. It had been a rainy WEBSTER, CLAY, CALHOUN, AND night, and the water was yet dripping with an
JACKSON. irregular, sodden sound from the hemlocks in the yard. He dimly saw flowers, and they
HOW THEY SAT FOR THEIR DAGUERREOTYPES. were wet. The hall light fell out far upon W HEN Daguerre made practical the art of the wet graveled path. A wet creeper, with VV taking portraits by the aid of sunlight a staring scarlet blossom, had brushed in from and chemical combinations, Webster, Clay, Calthe porch when the door was opened, and peer-houn, and Jackson were past the prime of life. ed, nodding, about.
| Two of them had wasted much time in sitting Hitty, standing quietly to close the door upon to artists; and if they had been captious men him, was a sight to which he could have kneeled | they could have told of long, dreary hours they in reverence. The girl's eyes were wide open; had dreamily, and often miserably, passed in her lips closed and still; her hands folded into the studios of painters and sculptors. In fact, one another; all the woman in her had blos- Clay and Webster had been so much "persomed, opened, enriched itself in this crisis, to secuted" in this way that they were nervous at which God, or Cousin Phipps, had brought the very suggestion of the idea of entering an them.
artist's studio. Calhoun was not a popular idol It may be a curious fact in the psychological with the masses, and his immediate constituhistory of young men in the abstract, or of this ents seemed never to have taxed his patience young man in the concrete, but it is neverthe- much in endeavors to obtain his “counterfeit
presentment." Jackson lived so much on the corridors of the City Hall were lively with noise. ** frontiers" before he was President that he | At the very moment Mr. Clay was to sit "a comseemed to have had little experience with art-mittee" of some kind broke open the door into ists, if we may judge from the fact that he asked the refreshment-room, where a lunch was spread, Mr. Powers, the sculptor, “how he was getting and commenced helping themselves with the along with his portraits ?" meaning busts. greatest freedom; from the lunch-room they
When these great men were in the very acme came into the Governor's Room. Mr. Clay actof their fame the daguerreotype came into vogue, ed with great presence of mind, by seeming to and it was deemed a desirable thing to preserve not notice the intrusion. He was dressed with their faces for posterity by the aid of the new unusual care, for he had set apart some hour of process; and while they would probably have the day for the especial reception of the ladies. refused to sit long and weary hours and days The fashion of the day for the neck was a high to accomplish this desired object, they made no satin stock, with standing collar to match, which objection to giving a flitting moment of their gave a singular stiffness to the whole costume. valuable time for the purpose.
When every thing was announced as in readiMr. Webster sat for his picture in the year ness Mr. Clay took his seat, surrounded by his 1849, in the art-gallery corner of Fulton Street host of admirers, who seemed wonderfully deand Broadway, opposite St. Paul's Church. He lighted with this “private view." For a mowas the guest at the time of the Astor House, ment it appeared as if the real object of the moin which establishment he was by the proprie- ment would be defeated. Mr. Clay, however, tors treated with the most princely considera- suddenly waved his hand, which had the effect tion. He received the request to sit for his to command the utmost silence; then dropped picture, after being informed it would only oc- both before him, one grasped within the other. cupy a few moments of his time, with a prompt | While the process of taking the picture conassent, and made no other remarks than were tinued, which was for some seconds, many of necessary to fix the time and place. Punctual- the spectators, unaccustomed to mental discily to the moment, and unattended, he was at pline, grew pale in their efforts to subdue their the gallery. He was expected, and when he interest in what was going on, or from fear of made his appearance his dignified presence, being rude by some unfortunate interruption. massive head, his large dark eye, and com- Mr. Clay all the while seeming to be perfectly manding political position almost paralyzed the at his ease; the blood flowed calmly through his then comparatively inexperienced workmen. cheeks, his eyes beamed with peculiar intelliHis style of dress was also calculated to attract gence, and his large, expressive mouth was firm attention, the prominent object of which was a but kindly disposed; he could not have been blue dress-coat ornamented with richly-gilt but more self-possessed if alone in his study. When tons. Under direction he quietly took his seat, the click of the instrument announced that the and was as kindly disposed as a well-trained affair was ended, an enthusiastic but subdued child. It was more difficult in those days than demonstration was made by the spectators. Mr. now to take a picture, but Mr. Webster submit- Clay took the hint, and gracefully rising, put ted with the greatest good-nature to every re- every one at ease by commencing conversation quest, and at the proper moment was as motion- with those persons nearest to him, and he did less as a statne. The picture, under such fa- this as if he had not been interrupted. In a vorable circumstances, was soon obtained, and few moments the room was relieved of cameras Mr. Webster, on being told that such was the and extra curtains, the doors were thrown open case, his face brightened up with an expressive to the public, and then proceeded the last and smile, and without other demonstration, except probably the grandest reception Mr. Clay while a formal bow, he left the gallery,
| living ever received in New York. Mr. Clay sat for his picture in New York in Mr. Calhoun sat for his picture in Washington 1850, directly after he had announced himself city in the year 1849—less than two years before in favor of the “Compromise Act" of that year. he died. His hair, which in his younger days The attention he received from our citizens was dark, and stood so frowningly over his broad, made it almost impossible to see him, Mr. square forehead, was now long, gray, and thin, Clay, whose health was then beginning to de- and combed away from his face and fell behind cline, declared that he was overwhelmed with his ears. Mr. Calhoun was dressed in a suit of demands on his time. His friends, however, black, over which he wore a long cloak. Nothing were very urgent, and he finally decided that in human form could bave exceeded his dignity he would gratify their wishes, and appointed of manner and impressive personal appearance the morning of the day he was to have a public that day. He came promptly in accordance reception at the City Hall. Mr. Matsell was with his appointment, accompanied by his then Chief of Police, and by his assistance the daughter, Mrs. Klempson. The day was camera was taken to the Governor's Room, cur- cloudy and unfavorable for the business protains were tacked up, and every thing arranged, posed. Mr. Calhoun seemed to feel this, but Mr. Clay being present, and expressing himself was at the same time very obliging, and was relieved by the quietness of the room. The constantly making some kind remark about crowd of people in the mean time outside of the any delay or accident that might occur. The building was becoming demonstrative, and the first trial, owing to the floating clouds and
murky atmosphere, consumed some thirty sec- gaze. Calhoun's eyes were cavernous, they onds, which appeared to be a long time in a seemed so deeply set in his head, but there standing position. Mr. Calhoun readily con- was a deep blue in their depths that appeared sented, however, to a second trial, which was trembling with a threatening storm; and yet perfected in ten seconds. Mrs. Klempson, who there was, for all this, inconsistent as it may. delicately arranged at times her father's hair or seem, a wonderful sense of repose. Jackson's the folds of his cloak, expressed her surprise at eye was of a bluish-gray, dashed with yellow this, and said, “Father, how is it that your first and red, that in his youthful days made it look picture, to make it, consumed so much more so hot, red, and terrible. It was ever trembling time than your second ?" Mr. Calhoun resumed by the agitations it had been accustomed to, and his seat while the plate was preparing for the was constantly changing, one moment stern and third picture, and substantially replied that the defiant, the next quiet and peaceful; the imperiart of taking pictures by the daguerreotype was ous was, however, always predominant. a new process, and that while the results had decply interested him, as indicative of great ad
THE PLAINS, vantages to the social circle and all scientific pursuits, yet he did not feel competent to ex
AS I CROSSED THEM TEN YEARS AGO. plain the exact method, and with these prelim ["The Plains," as seen from the windows of a “Silinary remarks he proceeded to open up the in
ver Palace" rail-car, well stocked with creature com
forts, and traversing a region covered with houses and vention by an analytical disquisition and explan fences, will soon be familiar to traveling Americans: ation that could not have been surpassed by the
but the Plains as they were till the Iron Horse first
careered over them as they still are every where else most accomplished expert; and all this was done
than within sight of his track-have been seen by in the simplest and clearest language, that fas- comparatively few: one of whom has made the folcinated and astonished the workmen in the
lowing record of his impressions.--HORACE GREELEY.] gallery. Mr. Calhoun sat the third time, and M HE Mississippi is the King of Rivers. Takafter expressing a great deal of pleasure at the 1 ing rise almost on the northern limit of the announced success of his visit, and calling the temperate zone, it pursues its majestic course attention of his daughter to some pictures on nearly due south to the verge of the tropic, with the walls, he left the gallery.
its tributaries washing the Alleghanies on the General Jackson's picture was taken at the one hand and the Rocky Mountains on the othHermitage in the spring of 1845. He was at er, throughout the entire length of those great the time a confirmed invalid, so much so that mountain chains. his death was a possible event at any moment. The Amazon, or La Plata, may possibly bear Against the wishes of his household, who were to the sea an equal volume of waters; the Nile only solicitous for his comfort, he would know flows through more uniformly genial climates, who called upon him, and against the positive and ripples over grander and more ancient reladvice of his attending physician he persisted in ics of the infancy of mankind; the Ganges, or gratifying those who had “ come so far” by hav- the Hoang-ho, may be intimately blended with ing his picture taken. On the morning appoint- the joys and griefs, the fears and hopes, of more ed he caused himself to be dressed with especial millions of human beings; while the Euphrates, care, and bolstered up with pillows and cush- the Danube, or the Rhine, is far richer in hisions. He was very determined in his manner, toric associations and bloody, yet glorious, memand would not listen to any denial. At this ories : but the Mississippi still justifies its proud time his hair, once such a remarkable steel appellation of "The Father of Waters." gray, and which then stood like a mass of bay- Its valley includes more than one million onets round his forehead, was now soft and square miles of the richest soil on earth, and is creamy white, and combed quietly away from capable of sustaining in plenty half the populahis temples, and fell upon his shoulders. When tion of the globe; its head-springs are frozen the moment came that he should sit still he half, the year, while cane ripens and frost is nerved himself up with the same energy that rarely seen at its mouth; and a larger and characterized his whole life, and his eye was richer area of its surface is well adapted at once stern and fixed and full of fire. The task ac- to Indian corn, to wheat, and to grass—to the complished, he relapsed into his comparatively apple, the peach, and the grape-than of any helpless condition. When relieved from pain other commensurate region of earth. Its imhe was pleasant and courtly, yet never seemed mense prairies are gigantic natural gardens, to be entirely satisfied with the restraints im which need but the plow to adapt them to the posed upon him as an invalid.
growth of the most exacting and exhausting In looking through the camera glass into the plants. It is the congenial and loved home of eyes of these remarkable men, Webster's seemed the choicest animals: I judge that more game to be dark and mysterious, where way down in / is now roving at will over its immeasurable profound depths were hidden strange mysteries. wilds and pastures than is found on an equal Clay's was a light bluish-gray, and was always area all the world besides. It is the geographic restless, the pupil of which seemed to be con- heart of North America, and probably contains stantly trembling from the electrical effects of fully half the arable land in the New World the controlling mind; it was fascinating, and north of the Isthmus of Darien. caused you to look away from its concentrated! Its recent progress in industry and civiliza
tion has been rapid beyond parallel. At the on the Missouri and its affluents; but human birth of this century, its only city was a village; genius can never wholly overcome the obstacles its total white population was less than one to secure and speedy navigation presented by million. To-day, it has five cities, averaging the nature of that resistless current, or rather two hundred thousand inhabitants each, and its of the country it traverses. The eager thoucivilized population exceeds fifteen millions. sands pressing westward overland each summer
And to its luxuriant and still unpeopled ex- to the shores of the Pacific find no relief from panse all nations, all races, are yet eagerly the length, the weariness, of their tedious jourHocking. The keen-eyed sons of cold and hard ney in the shrill but welcome whistle of the fireNew England there meet the thrifty Dutchmen propelled, floating caravanserai. For weeks, of Pennsylvania, the disinherited children of they stalk in dusty, sombre array, beside the Scandinavia, of Northern Germany, and of the broad, impetuous Platte : finding obstruction, British Isles. From every quarter, every civ- not furtherance, in its rippling, treacherous curilized land, the hungry, the portionless, the rent; this moment scarcely knee-deep, and the daring, hie to the Great Valley, there to forget next far over head; only their thirst, with that the past buffets of niggard fortune and hew out of their fainting beasts, is assuaged thereby. for their offspring the homes of plenty and com- For all other uses, its bed might as well-per. fort denied to their own rugged youth. Each haps better-be a stretch of uniformly thirsty, year, as it fits, sees the cultivated portion of torrid sand. the Great Valley expand ; sees the dominion of For the wide PLAINS, which slope impercepthe brute and the savage contracted and driven tibly, regularly upward from the bluffs of the back; sees the aggregate product of its way- Missouri to the bases of the Rocky Mountains, ing fields and fertile glades dilate and increase. are unlike any other region of earth. They laAnother century, if signalized by no unfore- bor under what, with no reference to our current seen calamity, will witness the Great Valley the politics, may be fitly characterized as a chronic home of one hundred millions of energetic, ef- deficiency of back-bone. Rock, to be sure, is ficient, intelligent farmers and artisans, and its sometimes seen here in place; but very rarely, chief marts the largest inland cities of the globe. save in the buttes, or perpendicular faces of hills,
The Mississippi and its eastern tributaries which are mainly confined to the vicinity of are among the most placid, facile, tractable mountains, and are obviously a sort of natural of rivers. A single fall wholly arrests navi- adobe-a modern product of sun and rain and gation on the former; the Ohio rolls its bright wind, out of the mingled clay and sand which volume a thousand miles unbroken by one for- form the subsoil of all this region. midable cataract. If half the steam vessels on Apart from this butte formation, the Plains earth are not found on these waters, the pro- have little or no rock, save at unfathomed portion is not much less than that. It may al- depths; and their larger streams run through most be said that steam navigation and the de- valleys and over beds washed and worn through velopment of the Great Valley have hitherto countless centuries to a depth of hundreds of gone hand in hand, and that the former is the feet below the ordinary level of the country, vital impulse, the indispensable main-spring, of yet exposing no rock in their beds- nothing the latter,
still but clay and sand-sand in their chanThere is no eastern affluent of the Great River nels, clay in their intervales and along their whose sands have not been plowed by adventur- banks, save where some tributary--perhaps dry ous keels almost to their sources; and the spec- throughout most of each summer-has brought tacle of a steamboat pilot backing his engine to down additional miles of coarse, heavy, yieldlet a yoke of oxen and cart ford unharmed aheading, clogging sand, across which the teams of of his stern-wheeled, light-drawing craft, is prob- traders or immigrants plod slowly their weary ably peculiar to this region. The Ohio River way as they follow up the banks of the central captain who averred that his boat drew so little stream that she could get on by the help of a moist sur-/ Half a dozen ridges of stubborn Eastern face or a smart dew was less extravagant than granite, ribbing these Plains, would have comhe would have been in uttering the same hyper-pletely changed the character and destiny of bole any where else.
the central Western world. But, the moment the Great River is crossed, I Behind or above those ridges, lakes and all this is changed. The turbid, resistless Mis- marshes would have been formed, arresting the souri waters a far larger area than the other sweep of fires and insuring the growth of ample “inland sea" of Mr. Calhoun, wherewith it timber: water-power, building-stone, and other blends at St. Louis ; yet its tonnage is but a aids to industry, would have incited to settlement fraction when compared with that of the latter; and civilized effort; in due time, arts would have and, while boats of liberal size are overshadowed flourished and cities risen where all is now, and by the Alleghanies at almost each day's journey seems to have ever been, savage solitude and along their western base, the rays of no setting bleak desolation. For in the absence of reşun were ever yet intercepted on their way to sisting ridges of rock, sometimes rising above a steamboat deck by the peaks of the Rocky or nearly to the surface, and of consequent Mountains.
lakes or swamps, annual fires, impelled by furiTime will doubtless multiply the keels plying lous gales, sweep mercilessly over every foot of the country which has still virtue enough in its deeper subsoil and depositing them, in the soil to evoke a tolerable growth of herbage; shape of ashes or of decaying stalks, on the while the flooding rains of autumn and winter, surface; and that moisture would thus be rethe melting snows of spring, acting upon a tained and other plants ultimately encouraged clayey surface unprotected by rocks or matted to germinate and grow under the protection of roots, constantly wash and gully it away, car- this much dispraised annual, which, neverthe rying off millions of tons of it annually to ren- less, was not created in vain, nor yet to curse, der opaque and milky the waters of the Arkan- but rather to bless mankind. Weeds and noxsas, Kansas, Platte, and Niobrarah, and render ious plants are confessions of human ignorance. the Missouri and lower Mississippi gigantic riv- Were we but wise enough, every one would coners of pea-soup—the least pellucid and most tribute to our sustenance and comfort, or to fertilizing streams under the sun.
those of the animals who do. Each year sees them bear to and squander It is the mind, the human soul, that has run upon the ocean a wealth of fertility, a volume to weeds. Were but that put right, we should of plant-food, adequate to the production of am- realize that nothing else is wrong. ple bread and meat for all the beggars on earth; | Drouth is, throughout each summer, the but each year, alas ! sees the Plains still farther master scourge of the Plains. No rain-or denuded and impoverished by this same pro- next to none--falls on them from May till Occess, which threatens to continue till the crack tober. By day, hot suns bake them; by night, of doom. Nay: the process tends ever to self- fierce winds sweep them; parching the earth acceleration; for, as the streams and water- to cavernous depths; withering the scanty vegcourses are annually gullied still deeper and etation, and causing fires to run wherever a deeper, the exposure of the intervening hills thin vesture of dead herbage may have escaped and glades to abrasion and waste from falling the ravages of the previous autumn. and running water becomes greater; and the Of course, no young tree escapes destruction, more the soil is washed away and impoverished unless it cowers behind the perpendicular, herbthe less capable it becomes of producing those less bank of some gullying, washing stream, or plants and grasses which can alone, by the stands in the low, wet, narrow bottom of some abundance and tenacity of their interlacing unfailing creek. Even here, the slender belt of roots, present some barrier to this sweep of de- scanty, indifferent timber - usually the elsevastation.
where worthless cotton-wood-is often set upon There is urgent necd of some great genius, by a fierce prairie-fire, driven through the dead some creative Napoleon, some Liebig of the grass to windward by some resistless gale, and western wastes, to tell nis by what means this is charred and blackened to lifelessness, save at desolation may be arrested and overcome. the roots. Yet from those roots springs a new
I ventured timidly to suggest the Canada growth of luxuriant shoots, and, if no fresh digthistle as, in the absence of a better, a plant ad aster is encountered, these shoots develop rapmirably adapted to counteract this fatal tend- idly into trees, while their predecessors fall, ency-to bar the road to ruin-defying drouth decay, and are forgotten. But, let the fires by its facility of piercing the earth to any imag- rayage them for two or three seasons successive inable depth and drawing thence sustenance ly, the vigor of the roots is exhausted, and the and solace under the most scorching suns-a trees disappear forever. plant which affords nourishment in later Spring Hence, as prairie-fires are kindled far more and early Summer to nearly all ruminating ani- frequently and wantonly by white men than by mals, especially if it be cut and slightly salted Indians, timber on the Plains has visibly been a few hours before it is eaten ; which sends its diminishing throughout the last fifty years, and seeds to great distances on the wings of the threatens at no remote day to disappear altowind, and which wonld laugh to scorn the rav-gether. ages of the fires of October and November. The bleached skeletons of dead cotton-woods,
There may be plants better adapted to the and, as you approach the Rocky Mountains, of end in view than this—I sincerely hope there pines also, still linger beside creek-beds where are-possibly the Alfalfa (or Chilian clover) is no living tree has been seen for an age; while one of them-and I trust the best may be chosen the thin screens of timber along many streams and propagated.
have for miles been swept away by the relent My own suggestion was made to incite, not less axe of camping teamster or emigrant. foreclose, inquiry and discussion; and I shall Rivers sink and are lost for miles in beds be most gratified to see it largely improved where water was formerly visible nearly through upon, But, even if there be no plant better the summer ; what were once perennial brooks adapted to the end in view than the Canada are now for months but stretches of thirsty, thistle, I insist that a very moderate outlay scorching sand. Grass now springs but in would insure the general diffusion of this one patches, in hollows wherein the drifted snow over the parched plains and naked, water-worn, lies deep far into spring, where it formerly overclayey hill-sides of the Far West; that such spread miles of hill and glade. And the prediffusion would rapidly arrest the waste and loss dominant tendency, as wherever matters are of their soil, while gradually restoring their fer- left to the anarchical caprice and short-sighted tility by drawing up mineral elements from the greed of coarse, selfish men, is from bad to worse.