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be seen, nothing but the fact that the book has just been prin. ted connects it with the “close of the year 1836 ?” There is, for example, a table of the imports into New Orleans, from the interior, brought down to the year 1834; another of exports of cotton, tobacco, sugar and molasses, to the year 1833; a table of arrivals of ships, steamboats, &c., to the same time; a list of steamboat accidents, previous to the year 1832. A list of steamboats on the Western waters is given, which must, we think, be very defective, since of the boats whose names it has occurred to us to look for, the following are not to be found: the Oceana, Persian, Hail Columbia, and the boats now running, named Mississippi, Gen. Wayne, and North America. These are all well known boats, and have been mostly on the river more than a year. We have no desire to pursue this matter further, but held it our duty to expose what we consider a piece of literary fraud. We do not see how a man can commit, in literature, an action which he, himself, would stigmatize as knavery, in other business.
Perhaps we should say a word about the preface, which is a curious affair
It is a most bitter and furious assault upon
Mr. Butler and the Editor of the North American Review. It seems both had ventured to criticise a former work of James Hall's, and point out some inaccuracies in it. The North American can probably take care of itself; we will, therefore, say nothing on that part of the subject. Mr. Butler's article was published in our own work, which Judge Hall humorously styles "an obscure periodical, called the Western Messenger.” We suppose Mr. Butler will not feel very much hurt by this assault; if he does, he shall have our obscure pages to answer in, unless, indeed, he prefers Judge Hall's new way of carrying on the controversy in the prefaces of his historical works. This is an original invention of the Judge, for which we give him great credit. We had, indeed, observed that his prefaces were generally attacks on every body, beside himself, who had treated the subject; but were not aware,
till now, that he did it on principle, considering this the true purpose of a preface. People have been commonly so blind as to suppose it the object of a preface to give some account of the work which it precedes. This, according to Judge Hall, is a great blunder.
A preface, he says, is useless, except in one case, i. e. when a man has to reply to criticisms on a former work. For example, the preface of Scott's Life of Napoleon should have been a dissertation on the Waverly novels; and the preface to Johnson's dictionary, ought to have been a defence of the Rambler. This theory is new and good, and
will, no doubt, be received with favor. And speaking of the Rambler reminds us of another advantage of a preface like the one before us. To use the words of Johnson, "it has one "recommendation peculiar to itself, that it gives vent to ma“ lignity without real mischief. The poison which, if confined, "would burst the heart, fumes away in empty hisses, and malice “ is set at ease with little danger to merit.”
ART. 15.-SONNET TO SLEEP.
FROM THE SPANISH OF ARGENSOLA.
Thou lively Image of all dreaded Death,
Art. 16. - MONTHLY RECORD. JANUARY.
Our CAUSE IN THE WEST. The cause of liberal Christianity was never so promising, in the West, as at present. The better part of community appear to feel the need of some religious faith and principle to restrain the career of popular passion, to counteract the selfish tendency of the all-engrossing pursuit of wealth, to be the great motive and guardian of education and make men occupy the place in creation which God intended them to fill.
Our views are received with unexpected favor, where they have been preached, and are very congenial with the young, independent, and generous spirit of the West. Beside the established societies at Cincinnati, Louisville and St. Louis, there are growing societies at Alton, Peoria, Tremont, and Chicago; and we have calls for preachers from many places, which cannot be supplied. We trust that, ere long, this want of preachers will be supplied, and that we can furnish well educated ministers of genuine Western growth. We fully believe, that the project of a Western Unitarian Theological School will be, ere long, realised.
We give extracts from two letters among many which we have received, showing what a sphere of labor is opening in the great Vineyard of the Lord. The first extract is from a letter from Vincennes.
“The subscribers you have in this place appear to be highly pleased with the Messenger. In fact there is a great tendency to liberalism in this place as well as throughout the Wabash Valley ; it needs only to have a proper direction to be productive of much good. I had hoped that you could have made it convenient to have visited us last summer. May we not look for
the coming season? I am confident, if you can spare the time, you would not have occasion to regret a trip through the Valley of the Wabash, either on account of your own personal gratification or on account of the cause with which you are connected, and in which I hope I have not yet lost all interest. Praying that God
your labors in a cause, which, wherever it has had its proper effect, has more than aught else amelio_ rated the condition of the human family here, and, I trust, better prepared them for a hereafter.
I bid you, dear sir, adieu,
With sentiments of sincere regard."
The other extract is from a letter from Mississippi.
“My dear sir, the opening for a Unitarian Church, either here or at Grand Gulf, is promising. There are several avowed Unitarians here, and the old doctrines are nearly worn out; while the means of the people are as abundant as their inclinations are liberal. Is there any thing I can furnish for my only preacher, the Western Messenger ? I am much impressed with its moral and literary excellence. How I sigh for a nearer connection with your elevating and ennobling Church.”
THE CHRISTIAN DENOMINATION. -- We are rejoiced to hear and see so many tokens of the life and activity of this evangelical denomination. They are preaching the simple Gospel doctrines of Faith in one God and in the Lord Jesus Christ, throughout the borders of our country and causing many an humble soul to bless their ministering words.
We are happy that Dr. Channing's letter, published in our columns, has been so well received and far diffused among them. The Christian Palladium contains the following notice:
“ Dr. CHANNING'S LETTER. — The able document which we pub. lished from this distinguished brother, has been so cordially received, and is spoken of in such high terms, we have been induced to make it into a small neat tract, of thirty-two pages, for general circulation. F Any person sending us $5, shall have 250 of them sent to order. Here is a chance for the wealthy to do good, in a prudent way, by spreading light and intelligence."
IMPORTANT SUBJECTS OF PUBLIC THOUGHT AND LEGISLATION. We are happy to find, that two subjects, which were considered in our last number, in two several articles, have been recently brought before the public notice in a very encouraging manner.
The Kentucky Legislature has been discussing the expediency of adopting some measures, to prevent the loss of life by steamboat accidents. The Maryland legislature has enacted a law against the pernicious practice of wearing weapons -- a practice, which has drenched the South and West with blood.
The citizens of Natchez, Miss. have held a large and highly respectable meeting on the latter subject, and passed some
spirited resolutions. We trust, that each one, who voted for these noble and timely resolutions, will exemplify them in his own practice.
Hon. G. Winchester, offered the following resolution, which was unanimously adopted :
Resolved, That a committee of five persons be appointed by the President of this meeting, to report a Preamble and Resolutions, such as they shall deem the most efficient, for the purpose of causing the whole power of public opinion to operate practically, in destroying the false notions of honor, the pretext of self-defence, or the indulgence of violent passions, which have hitherto introduced the practice of carrying dirks, pistols, or Bowie knives, of engaging in duels, of endangering the lives of peaceable citizens by street fights, and of taking the execution of the laws by mobs into their own hands, by the increasing practice of Lynching, and that the said committee make their report forthwith.
The committee alluded to were appointed, and presented a list of resolutions, which were unanimously adopted. We subjoin two of them :
Resolved, That the practice of habitually carrying deadly weapons, such as pistols, dirks and Bowie knives, is, in our opinion, unnecessary in a land of civilization and laws, and calculated to result in the frequent commission of criminal bloodshed, and the desecration of the laws of God and man, and that, therefore, we will do all we can, by our example and influence, to render such a practice disreputable.
Resolved, That we earnestly recommend to our sister towns, and the people of the State generally, to adopt a similar course for the remedy of the evil, deprecated by the foregoing resolutions.
To other cities, we say, go thou and do likewise,
NEW RELIGIOUS PAPER. - We have been much pleased, with the few numbers we have received of the Christian Monitor, a new Unitarian paper in the East. Its zealous tone, its variety of short and interesting articles, and its neat exterior, are calculated to obtain for it many patrons. It supplies a want long felt in our denomination. Its size and cheapness, will obtain for it a diffusion among people, where our other periodicals would never reach.