« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
direction, was, like many other of our reformatory movements, a vain attempt to remedy an effect without doing away with the cause—an ineffectual endeavor to cure au evil, without the slightest reference to its prevention; for we read in the same work that, even with the ventilator, 'the prisoners are packed so close together, and the air so corrupted by their stench,'that it occasions a disease, called the jail-distemper, of which they die by dozens; and cart-loads of them are carried out and thrown into u pit in the churchyard of Christ's Church, withoatceremony. And to this wretched place many innocent people are sometimes sent, and loaded with irons before their trial, not to secure them, but to extort money from them by a merciless jailer; for if tboy hare money to bribe him, they may have their irons as light as they please.'
The most revolting spectacle of the present day is, without doubt, an execution; yet, happily, this opprobrium of oura^e and common Christianity is now, comparatively speaking, a rare occurrence; and, hideously appalling though it be, is unattended by the riot, license, and debauchery—not confined to one spot, but extending over a distance of three miles—that characterized the London executions of one hundred years ago. Hogarth, as the closing scene in the life of ' the idle apprentice,' has exhibited to us the awful procession from Newgate to Tyburn. As the engraving is known to almost every one, we need not further allude to it. But from a newspaper writer of the period, though the quotation be long, and its composition awkward, we feel bound to extract the following description of Newgate on the morning of, and the subsequent journey to Tyburn, to more forcibly illustrate an execution, the superior arrangements, the more decent conduct—in short, the advancement in civilization of our own era.
'The horrid aspect of turnkeys and jailers, in discontent and hurry; the sharp and dreadful looks of rogues that bog in irons, but who would wish to rob you if they could; the bellowing of | half-a-dozen names at a time to inquire after one | another; the variety of strong voices howling iu j one place, scolding, quarrelling, and swearing in • another, loud bursts of laughter in a third; the substantial breakfasts that are made in these scones of horror; the seas of beer and gin that are swallowed, the incessant outcries for more, and the bawling answers made by the tapsters; the impudent and unseasonable jests; the general nastiness, with the oaths and imprecations echoed from every quarter of the prison, added to the melancholy clank of chains and fetters, compose altogether one of the most horrid spectacles the eyes of thinking men can behold. Yet how much more terrific is this dreadful scene rendered by the behaviour of the men just setting off for execution, who are madly drinking or uttering the vilest ribaldry, and jeering others that are less
impenitent; while the ordinary bustles among them, and shifting from one to another, distributes scraps of good counsel to inattentive hearers; and near him, the hangman, impatient to bo gone, swears at their delays.
'At last they set out, and with them a torrent of mob, consisting of the idlest of holiday-makers, and all the thieves of both sexes, who meet with that security which large mobs afford, so that this occasion becomes a jubilee-day for all offenders, who dare not appear on any other, the confusion making a free mart, an amnesty for all outlaws. To add to tho rudeness of the scene, two or three sweeps generally mount the horses that draw the convicts, whose sooty aspects and ludicrous gestures divert the crowd; and the cavalcade, instead of impressing those salutary impressions on the minds of spectators which it is alone intended for, becomes an impious spectacle of laughter, riot, and disorder. The way from Newgate to Tyburn is now one continued fair of the meanest of the rabble. Where the crowd is thinnest, dead cats and dogs fly about, and are deemed excellent pastime. The nearer they approach the gallows, blows are struck, heads are broken, and swinging pieces of sticks are thrown about. Amidst this rioting, the sound of different noises, and a variety of outcries on every side, making up a discord not to be paralleled, the last psalm is sung; and the ordinary and executioner, having performed their duties with little ceremony and less concern, seem tired and glad that it is over. The tragedy being ended, a fresh fray arises between the mob and the surgeons about the property of the dead bodies; and the morning's amusement ends with often the loss of more lives than die by the halter.'
(To be continued.)
The almond (Amygdalitis communis, ) which is indigenous to Syria and Northern Africa, has become naturalized in the south of Europe, Madeira, the Azores, and the Canary Islands, and is cultivated for ornament or its fruit in the central and southern portions of the United States. When grafted upon the common plum, it often attains a height of twenty or thirty feet, with a trunk eight or ten inches in diameter; and even in the neighborhood of Paris, where the winter climate is almost as severe as that of Philadelphia, it is met with of the elevation of forty feet, and in the south of France it grows still higher.
The almond is commonly one of the first among hardy trees to display its blossoms, which generally put forth, in Baibary, in January; at Smyrna, in February; near London, in March; in Oermauy and New York, in the latter part of April; and at Christiana, in Norway, not till the beginning of Juno. The blossom appears before the leaves, and hence they produce the finest effect when planted among evergreens. It has been observed that, though vernal frosts often destroy the germs of the fruit, they do not injure the beauty of the flowers, but even increase their splendor. An avenue of almond trees, quite hoary with frost, in the evening, will be of a brilliant rose color the following morning, and will often rutain its beauty for more than a month; the flowers never falling off till the trees are covered with verdure. The fruit is not so at tractive as that of the peach, because, instead of preserving the same delicious pulp, its pericarp shrivels as it ripens, and becomes a horny kind of husk, opening of its own accord at the end of maturity. The kernel of some varieties of the almond, however, is not defended by so thick a ghell as that of the peach and nectarine; for it is often so tender that the nuts break when shaken together. The chief distinction between these fruits is, that the almond has a stone, covered with a coriaceous, dry, hairy covering, while those of the peach and nectarine are developed in a rich, juicy pulp, surrounded by a smooth or downy skin.
In a wild state the almond is sometimes found with bitter kernels, and at other times sweet, in a similar manner to the Grammout oak, (Qucrcus Hispaiiira,) which, in Spain, generally bears sweet edible acorns, but sometimes produces only such as are bitter. The two varieties the most valuable for cultivation are the " sweet kernelled" almond, (dmondier a pelis fruits, or Amandes douces, of the French,) and the "Soft shell" almond (Amandier a roque tendre, or Amande a coquemo/le, of France.) The shell of the former is hard, but the kernel is sweet flavored. It is cultivated in the south of Europe, being generally propagated by grafting, standard high, on the bitter almond, or on strong growing seedling al» mond stocks, in order to insure the sweetness of its fruit. The latter is characterized by the softness or frugality of its shell, as well as by the sweet flavor of its kernel, and is the variety recently introduced and distributed by this office.
The almond does not prosper, unless the soil be dry, sandy or calcareous, and of considerable depth; but all the varieties will succeed well in a free soil, that is not too moist, when grafted or inoculated on stocks of the common plum. The situation should be sheltered, on account of the liability of the branches to be broken off by high windR. As it sends down a tap-root, exceeding two feet in length the first season, it has been found that such a tree, when taken up has two fibres, and consequently but little chance of growing.
From this circumstance originated the practice of germinating the nuts in boxes of earth before sowing them, and pinching off the points of the radicals when about an inch in length, which causes it to throw out numerous horizontal roots.
This mode of germinating the nuts also insures plants to the nurseryman the first season after sowing, whereas, when this is not done, the seeds often lie dormant in the ground two years. The almond requires but little pruning, except when fruit of a large size is desired, or the duration of the tree is wished to bo prolonged.
The advantages of this tree may be briefly summed up in the following words :—Tt prospers upon indifferent soil; requires but little care in its cultivation; is beautiful as an ornamental tree, useful as a shade tree, and profitable in its production of a much desired fruit, yielding, in its bearing years, about 20 pounds to the tree, which, at 15 cents a pound, would amount to at least $500 to an acre. The amount of almonds annually imported into the United States is believed to be Talued at more than §250,000.
WORKING WITH GOD.
"Work, for it is God that worketh in you." This beautiful union of holy fear, and yet holy courage, of entire dependence upon God, and yet unabated and jealous " diligence to make our calling and election sure," is attainable only, nay, I might say intelligible only to a spiritual mind. Not that there is any inexplicable mystery in their connection; men are continually acting in the affairs of life in the same way. They clear the ground, sow their crops, go through all the toils of husbandry with unremitting diligence; and show they cau do no more; they watch for the increase, they think of it, they talk of it with the deepest interest, while yet it is undeniable that they cannot make a single blade of wheat to spring up, or bear produce. The sun must shine upon it; the rain must water it, the earth must nourish it; they can command none of these.—Bunyan.
BAYARD TAYLOR IN NORTHERN EUROPE.
A sleigh-ride through Norrland.
Inertafi.e, near Umeaa, Dec. 24, 1856. My last letter, I believe, closed with our arrival at Sundsvall. This is a pretty little town of two or three thousand inhabitants, situated at the head of a broad and magnificent bay. It is the eastern terminus of the only post-road across the mountains to Trondjem (Droutheim) in Norway, which passes through the rich and populous province of Jemteland. It is, consequently, a lively and bustling place, and has a considerable coasting trade. The day after our arrival was market-day, and hundreds of the Norrlanders thronged the streets and public square. They were all fresh, strong, coarse, honest, healthy people—the men with long yellow hair, large noses and blue eyes, the women with the rosiest of cheeks and the fullest develop- ] ment of body and limb. Many of the latter wore basques or jackets of sheepskin with the wool inside, striped petticoats and bright red stockings. The men were dressed in shaggy sheepskin coats, or garments of reindeer skin, with the hair outward. There was a vast collection of low Norrland sleds, laden with butter, cheese, hay, and wild game, and drawn by the rough and tough little horses of the country. Here was still plenty of life and animation, although we were already so far north that the sun did not shine upon Sundsvall the whole day, being hidden by a low hill to the south. The snowy ridges ou the north, however, wore a bright roseate blush from his rays, from 10 until 2.
We called upon a merchant of the place, to whom I had a letter of introduction. He is almost the only man I have met who seems to understand why I go to the north, and who has encouraged me to push on. The people in Stockholm, he says, know nothingabout Northern Sweden ; the journey is not at all difficult, and will be very interesting. He advised me togive up travelling by forbud, to purchase a couple of sleds, and take our chance of finding horses. We would have no trouble in making from 40 to 50 English miles per day. On returning to the inn 1 made the landlord understand what we wanted, but could not understand him in return. At this juncture came in a handsome fellow, with a cosmopolitan air, whom Braisted recognized, by certain invisible signs, as the mate of a ship, and who explained the matter in very good English. I purchased two plain but light and strongly made sleds for 50 rigs (about f 1-f), which seemed very cheap, but I have since learned that 1 paid much more than the current price.
On repacking our effects, we found that everything liquid was frozen—even a camphorated mixture, which had been carefully wrapped in flannel. The cold, therefore, must have been much more severe than we supposed. Our supplies, also, were considerably damaged—the lantern broken, a powder-flask cracked, and the salt, shot, nails, wadding, &c, mixed together in beautiful confusion. Everything was stowed in one of the sleds, which was driven by the postillion; the other contained only our two selves. We were off the next morning as the first streaks of dawn appeared in the sky. The roads about Sundsvall were very much cut up, and even before getting out of the town we were pitched'over head and ears into a snow bank.
We climbed slowly up and darted headlong down the ridges which descend from the west toward the Bothnian Gulf, dividing its tributary rivers; and, toward sunrise, came to a broad bay, completely frozen over and turned into a snowy plain. With some difficulty the skjutsbonde made me understand that a shorter road led
across the ice to the second post-station, Fjal, avoiding one change of horses. The way was rough enough at first, over heaped blocks of ice, but became smoother where the wind had full sweep, and had cleared the water before freezing. Our road was marked out by a double row of young fir-trees, planted in the ice. The bay was completely land-locked, embraced by a bold sweep of wooded hills, with rich, populous valleys between. Before us, three or four miles' across, lay the little port of Wifstu-warf, where several vessels—among them a ship of three or four hundred tuns—were frozen in for the winter. We crossed, ascended a long hill, and drove on through firwoods to Fjal, a little hamlet with a large inn.
Here we got breakfast; and though it may be in bad taste to speak of what one eats, the breakfast was in such good taste that I cannot pass over it without lingering to enjoy, in memory, its wonderful aroma. Besides, if it bt true, as some shockingly gross persons assert, that the belly is a more important district of the human economy than the brain, a good meal deserves chronicling no less than an exalted impression. Certain it is, that strong digestive arc to be preferred to strong thinking powers— better live unknown than to die of dyspepsia. This was our first country meal in Norrland, or' whose fare the Stockholmcrs have a horror, yet that stately capital never furnished a better. We had beefsteak and onions, delicious bloodpuddiugs, the tenderest of pancakes (no omelette souffles could be more fragile), with ruby raspberry jam, and a bottle of genuine English porter. If you think the bill of fare too heavy and solid, take a drive of fifteen miles in the regions of Zero, and then let your delicate stomach decide.
In a pieturesque dell near Fjul we crossed the rapid ludal Itiver, which comes down from the mountains of Norway. The country was wild and broken, with occasional superb views over frozen arms of the Gulf, and the deep rich valleys stretching inland. Leaving Hernosand, the capital of the province, a few miles to our right, we kept the main northern road, slowly advancing from station to station with old and tired horses. There was a snow-storm in the afternoon, after which the sky came out splendidly clear, and gorgeous with the long northern twilight, lu the silence of the hour and the deepening shadows of the forests through which we drove, it was startling to hear, all at once, the souud of voices singing a solemn hymn. My first idea was, that some of those fanatical Dissenters of Norrland who meet, like the Scotch Covenanters, among the hills, were having a refreshing Winter meeting in the wooJs; but on proceeding lurther we found that the choristers were a company of peasants returning from market with their empty sleds. ] It was already dark at 4 o'clock, and our last horses were so slow that the postillion, a handsome, lively boy, whose pride was a little touched by my remonstrances, failed, in spite of all his efforts, to bring us to the station before 7. We stopped at Weda, on the Angermann River, the largest stream in Northern Sweden. Angcrmannland, the country which it drains, is said to be a very wild ami beautiful region, where some traces of the old, original Asiatic type which peopled Scandinavia are yet to be found in the features of its secluded population. At Weda, wo found excellent quarters. A n.eat, quiet, old-fashioned little servant-girl of twelve or fourteen took charge of us, and attended to all our wants with the greatest assiduity. We had a good supper, a small but neat room, clean beds, and coffee in the morning, beside s a plentiful provision for breakfast on the way, for a sunl equal to seventy-five cents.
We left at 7s, the waning moon hanging on the horizon, and the first almost imperceptible signs of the morning twilight in the east. The Angermann River, which is here a mile broad, was frozen, and our road led directly across its surface. The wind blew down it, across the snow-covered ice, making our faces tingle with premonitory signs of freezing, as the mercury was-a little below zero. My hands were chilled inside the fur mittens, and I was obliged to rub my nose frequently, to prevent it from being nipped. The day was raw and chilly, and the temperature rose very little, although the hills occasionally sheltered us from the wind. The scenery, also, grew darker and wilder as we advanced. The fir-trees were shorter and stunted, and of a dark greenish-brown, which at a little distance appeared completely black. Nothing could exceed the bleak inhospitable character of these landscapes. The inlets of the Bothnian Gulf were hard, snow-covcrcd plains, inclosed by bold, rugged headlands, covered with ink-black forests. The more distant ridges faded into a dull indigo hue, flecked with patches of ghastly white, under the lowering, Sbiico, short lived daylight.
Our road was much rougher than hitherto. We climbed long ridges, only to descend by as steep declivities on the northern side, to cross the bed of an inland stream, and then ascend again. The valleys, however, were inhabited and apparently well cultivated, for the houses were large and comfortable, and the people had a thrifty, prosperous and satisfied air. Beside the farm-houses were immense racks, twenty feet high, for the purpose of drying flax and grain, and at the stations the people offered for sale very fine aud beautiful linen of their own manufacture. This is the staple production of Norrland, where the short Summers are frequently insufficient to mature the grain crops. The inns were all comfortable buildings, with very fair accommodations for travellers.
[To be concluded.]
GRIEF FOR DEPARTED FRIENDS.
BT AVIS C. HOWLAND.
It i9 not when the parting breath we watch with
anxious heart, It is not in the hour of death, when those we love
Nor yet when laid upon the bier, we follow slow the corse,
Which leads us to their dwelling low, that most we feel their loss.
When past the last and solemn rites, and dust to dust hath gone,
And in its wonted channelled course, the stream of
life flows on, Ah! who cap. tell how drear the space once held by
those most dear; When well-known scenes, and local things, and all
but they are there.
This deep, this heartfelt loneliness, this quietness of guef,
Falls heavier on our flowers of joy, than tempests
strong but brief, Tho' whirlwinds tear the blossoms fair, yet still the
stem may thrive, While a cold season's withering blast scarce leaves
the root alive.
But as our earthly pleasures fade, if plants of heavenly peace
Spring in our bosom's wilderness, and nurtured there increase,
In humble hope and holy fear, our minds will learn to prove
That " smitten friends are angels, sent on errands full of love I"
Then seek not hours of sober grief or sorrowing
thought to shun, Until our hearts are brought in truth, to say, "Toy
will be done I" And gratelul love for strokes like these, our hearts to
God may warm— Perhaps he saw the gathering cloud, and housed them
from the storm.
If in his own good time and way he shelter these from
And.in His mercy bless the blow to those remaining still,
May we not hope to join in heaven the song the blessed raise,
Almighty Lord, and King of Saints, how just and true tty ways I
The autumn of love
Is the season ot cheer, Life's mild Indian summer,
The smile of the year;
Ripe harvest is stored,
Repose and reward.
The winter of love
Is the beam that we win, While the storm scowls without,
From the tunjhme within, Love's reign is eternal,
The heart is his throne, And he has all seasons
Of life, for his own.
A correspondent of the New York Tribune furnishes the following account of a remarkable escape from the Ilapids, below Niagara Falls.
Suspension Bridge, March 31, 1857. The great Bridge is located a mile and a half below the Falls. After the vast quantity ot water of the river plunges over the Cataract, it runs about six miles through a wild and deep chasm, with perpendicular walls of craggy rocks, looking as though they had been rent asunder: by some mighty effort of nature, and as if the concentrated waters of the river were in a fright-! ful struggle to force their escape through a gulf '< of unknown depth, and whose bottom, by being' unevenly covered with the obstructions of mountain rocks buried deep in the bed of the rapids, only adds to the sublime and awful confusion, but cannot impede the progress of the wild and mighty rush of Niagara Ilapids.
On Tuesday, March 31, a little before 12 o'clock, a man was seen floating in the swift rapids under the bridge. The report spread immediately, and the citizens flew to the bridge from all directions. Immediately another report told that the man had found lodgment on a rock in the rapids! Could it be possible, thought I, as I ran with the crowd to the bank, that a man, sfter having been once even in the edge of the rapids below the bridge, could escape death! I knew that just below the bridge was the roughest rapid—its depth and velocity had always prevented sounding its bottom. I had often gone there to the bank and gazed for hours on the scene which continually varied as the obstructed current flies back against contending waves sending its foam and spray thirty or forty feet high; I had gone there, too, by moonlight to contemplate the awful grandeur of the scene.
On reaching the bridge, with the anxious crowd, I looked where every eye was gazing in painful anxiety, and there, nearly 300 feet down the perpendicular sides of rocks, was the figure of a man upon a rock in the edge of the rapids. A spy-glass showed that he was an aged man with a buhl head, and well dressed in dark clothes; and we could see him move carefully on the rock. It appeared barely possible to us that by a desperate effort he might gain a rock near him, and then find a safer spot nearer the perpendicular bank. Every one saw that he could not have approached the spot where he was, except by being carried there in the rapids from some way above. Between the rapids and the perpendicular rocks along the bank, it was evident no human aid could be given him. But something Bust be done; the man was wet and cold, if not exhausted. A young man by the name of Charles Whitmer is now seen to carry a ladder along the top of the bank above, but what can he do with a ladder t It is 300 feet down to the unfortunate man, and the rocks project over
so that the man cannot be seen from the bank above. Mr. Whitmer now sends for more ladders, and a crowd begin to tic them together; a man is now sent on the opposite side of the river, where he can see the man and signal where the ladders should be let down. The line of ladders begins to descend, and is held at the top by ropes fastened to trees. The poor man below has been moving, as if wanting to leave the rock, but dares not venture—he knows nothing of what is going on above him ; if he sees the long crowd of anxious spectators on the bridge it can only dishearten him, for there they can render him no assistance I But they can see the line of ladders descending to him! Now the ladders have caused a little dirt to fall down close by the poor man below—he looks up—unexpected hope! He sees a ladder swinging and slowly descending from rocks high over him. To him it must look like "Jacob's ladder" let down from Heaven! From his position he can see none of his anxious rescuers—not even one half the line of ladders. The end of the ladder seems not more than twenty feet from him. He cannot reach that from the rock where he is. He is now trying to leave the rock! He may jump to the next rock by a desperate effort—if he slips he is lost in the rapids. At last he jumps; and the crowd on the bridge give tremendous cheers over his success. He is now seen to whip his arms about himself, to exercise himself to keep fr,om freezing, for he had been an hour and a half on the rock. We now saw that a man had begun to descend the ladders from the top to render any assistance that might be needed. This man was Mr. Thelig the bridge porter. He descended to the end of the ladder, and found that it must be let down twenty feet lower. He then ascended, and they lowered the ladder; and now the man below was able to reach it, and began slowly to ascend. A courageous German by name of Ignaats Erne, an old man who could not speak any English, now went down the ladders to give" assistance if it should be needed. We saw him meet the cold, wet and almost exhausted old man near the bottom; he carefully went below him and ascended with him to encourage and help him! They came safe to the top of the bank, and we saw that the life of a respectable-appearing stranger had been saved. He appeared to be a man of strong constitution, though nearly sixty years of age. His countenance bespoke the gratitude he felt, and the crowd expressed their own joy and sympathy in the most hearty cheers. The stranger was taken to the Ladour House, where he was cared for in the kindest manner by Mr. Ladour, the proprietor. After putting on some dry clothes, the stranger appeared on the piazza, at the request of the crowd. Said he (in substance:)
Gentlemen of kind hearts, I cannot express my feelings nor my thanks, so great is my grati