15 AUGUST 1846, Page 15



Hochelaga ; or England in the l•rew World. Edited by Eliot Warburton, Esq.,

Author of "The Crescent and the Cross." In two volumes aiburn. PHILOSOPHY AIM HISTORY,

The Miscellaneous Works of the Right Honourable Sir James Mackintosh. In three

volumes Longman and Co. FICTION,

Father Darcy. By the Author of "Mount Sorel," and" The Two Old Men's Tales."

In two volumes Chapman and Hall.


HOCHELAGA is said to have been the ancient name of Canada; and these volumes contain an account of a visit to that country, some ram-

bles in the United States, with a notice of the outward and homeward voyage, mixed with a variety of miscellaneous subjects springing natu- rally out of the field of observation. The celebrated and successful au-

thor of The Crescent and the Cross, Mr. Warburton, professes to be

only the editor of the volumes, who vouches for the "tone and truth." The work, however, is exceedingly Warburtonian, not only in its man-

ner but its treatment. The smart and pointed vivacity of style is the same as in The Crescent and the Cross; there is the same disposition to rapid and rhetorical compilation touching the history and statistics of. every place the traveller comes to, and a something of heaviness in the march of the book, in spite of all the excellences of composition.

But a greater interest, and perhaps more of freshness in the subject,

renders Hochelaga a better book than its predecessor. The Mediter- ranean, Egypt, and Syria, do not receive so many people as North Ame- rica, but they are visited by more professional travellers' they have

been more thoroughly examined and exhausted ; and, after all, the inte- rest is rather of the dead or dying than of the living. The remains of

Grecian and Roman antiquity are but the skeletons of what were once animated creatures : the Crescent appears in a state of decrepitude, and the revival of the Cross is too remote for any credence save that of the enthusiastic. But all is different in the New World. It may not be quite true that "Westward the scene of empire bends its way," but there, without doubt, are new modes of political being rising into vigorous life, and not merely exciting the most careless passenger by the rapidity with which society wins upon the wilderness, and surpasses all that pane-

gyrical poetry could exaggerate of imperial power, but furnishing to the thoughtful observer some of the most singular elements in politics,—for

Canada and the other British settlements are quite as curious in their way as the United States. They are not, indeed, so far advanced, and perhaps the elements in them are somewhat different ; but there are the possible germs of a counterbalance to the fierce Democracy to the South of them, which it would be well to understand and better to cultivate.

A perfect traveller, who should combine the wisdom and observation of the philosopher with the graces of the literary artist, will be vainly

waited for. We must obtain our notions of a country by means of a division of labour, one man taking one part, another man another. In this point of view, it is well to have the pictures of Mr. Warburton or his "alter idem." The reader who is extensively acquainted with books of travels may meet much that he has met before—as the predominance of

fish at Newfoundland, the beauties of the American foliage in autumn, winter travelling in Canada, and perhaps nearly all the broad and' obvious features of scenery and manners which every one must notice.

But they are mostly better done in Hochelaga, with more of point, pith, and condensation ; and where the subject is worth an addi-

tional view—as Niagara—the picture is desirable on this ground. The summaries of such things as the now settled Oregon question, the expo- sition of the American constitution, or the history of Canada, had indeed been better away, because, however able, they are jejune from the space into which they are compressed, and are little more than well-executed compendiums for a gazetteer.

The remarkable parts of the book are those which contain the author's narrative of such incidents as occurred to himself or fell under his imme- diate observation, or his remarks on men, manners, and the state of the country. These are often of interest in themselves, full of matter, and with much of freshness ; but the most remarkable characteristic is the way in which the author brings out the text of his subjects, by his pointed and impressive mode of presenting their striking traits. This is perhaps as much a knack of writing as a thorough appre- tiation of the qualities of things ; but, if an artifice, it is often very

effective. Thus, be brings out by a touch the fine but inappropriate names and slender buildings of the newly-settled districts. "At each seven or eight miles of distance are thriving villages, built with the so- lidity and rapidity of the city of the pack of cards, and all named by Mrs. Malaprop—Rome is situated in a valley, and looks as if it had been built in a day"

The American part of the tour has not only the greatest interest for the reader from the nature of its subjects, but we think the strong con- trasts and strange peculiarities of that fervid nation are better suited to the writer's style than the quieter and more English society of Canada. His character, too, qualifies him to judge. A gentleman acquainted with, good society in many countries, and having evidently access to it in Arne. rica, he has the tolerance of a gentleman, with the power of a man of the world to draw distinctions : and his conclusions coincide with those we have more than once advanced touching manners and morals in America.

There are many persons of the finest feeling and of the highest sense of honour, though the last quality is too often tainted by the "auri sacra

fames"; but the majority predominates in everything—not only in political power, but in giving the tone to manners and opinions. America, in fitct, is deprived of the use of the services and example of her best citizens, and has recourse to those of her worst.

The various topics, and the writer's mode of treating them, are, after all, better shown by extracts than description; and for this purpose we will draw, pretty freely upon Hochelaga. • AMERICAN *TRAITS.

Oar primitive railway carried us again to Queenston: we pass over the ferry to Lewiston, and are soon on board an American steamer bound for Oswego, in the United States, on the South shore of Lake Ontario. There were a great number of people in the steamer, all Americans, travelling for health or amuse- ment. I talked to every one I could get to listen to me, and found them cour- teous intelligent, and communicative; well read over a very broad surface, par- ticahirly of newspapers,. but only a surface; very favourably disposed to the Eng- lish as individuals, but I fear not so as a nation- rather given to generalize on our affairs—on the state of the poor, from the Andover Workhouse—en the nobility, from the late Lord Hertford—on morality from Dr. Lardner. These are the sort of data on such matters kept for ever before their eyes by their press, echoed and reechoed through the remotest parts of the Union, till even the best-informed and most liberal-minded among them are more or less, acted upon by their

influence. * 4 • Utica is a large and flourishing town, or city as they love to call it. Through all these districts the stranger is astonished at the appearance of prosperity in every place and person; he sees no bad or even small houses, no poor or idle people; every place of business, transit, or amusement, is always full; lecture- rooms, railway-cars, theatres, hotels, banks, markets, crowded to bursting. There is something infections in this fever of activity; and I soon found myself rushing in and out of railway depots and diningroom just ust as fast as any one else. * * Our ideas of their perfect equality are just as much exaggerated as theirs are of our tyranny of class: servants generally are called servants, and address their superiors as "sir" and "ma'am"; porters, cab-drivers, and all those classes of font- tionanes, the same. I think there is very little difference between their manners and those which we are accustomed to; and they are quite as civil and obliging.


We found a very good hotel there, where we slept comfortably without any dreams of the Indians. I found in the morning I had indulged too much to be in time for the regular breakfast; but there was a side-table laid in the corner, Where one or two stragglers from the town and I seated ourselves: one of the waiters having put on the table what was necessary for his and our use during the meal, sat down himself also, and entered into conversation with us. He spoke quite freely, but at the same time respectfully—his manner was very proper. I talked to him a good deal; on many points he seemed wonderfully well-informed for a man in his situation. Some of his notions of England were rather amusing. He understood that it was quite an usual thing for an English lord, when in a bad humour, to horsewhip his servants all round, particularly on a day when his gun had failed to kill a sufficient number of foxes. Perhaps you may think the ideas of the waiter at a county inn not worth being printed: I think they are, in a land where his share of the government is as great as that of a doctor of laws or a millionnaire.

' My Georgian friends expressed much surprise when they heard the waiter had been my companion at breakfast; but. I have seen similar cases in several in- stances: the horsewhipping notion did not astonish them in the least.


At Woolwich, everything is trusted to the honour of the cadet: his punishment is an arrest by the word of his officer; no one watches that he keeps it. Often for a week together he is confined to his room for some boyish freak, looking at his companions playing at cricket or football outside, and longing to join them;


but he s shut in by something far more effectual than bolta or bars—by his honour; whatever other rules he may violate, to break that is unknown. Again, when an irregularity is committed, and the offender cannot be identified, the officer asks for him on parade; the culprit instantly follows, and says" I did it," and is punished accordingly. To establish a system of this sort among boys, formerly from fourteen, now from fifteen years of age upwards, is a very deli- cate and difficult matter; but when accomplished, it is invaluable; the boy must be thoroughly corrupt who does not imbibe a spirit of truth and honesty. under its influence. It teaches to love what is great and good, and hate all that is false, or mean, or cruel. At Westpoint, to establish a system like this would be almost impossible. An officer of the institution told me, that sometimes boys arrived at the college utterly ignorant of everything, especially of the difference between right and wrong: they find it more difficult to qualify many of their pupils in matters of honour and principle than in mathematics and fortification. The appointment of the cadets rests with members of Congress, each having one: in spite of this, and of its being of such essential consequence to their army, there is every year the bitterest opposition to the rate for the expenses of the college. A great ground of jealousy is, that there is a decidedly aristocratical feeling among the officers of the army. I have had the pleasure of knowing many: America may well be proud of them; they are highly educated and gentlemanly, upright and honour- able, zealous and efficient in their profession; with the greatest pleasure I bear witness that I have met with no exceptions. They are a most valuable class as citizens; and their high tone of feeling and good manners are not without an in- fluence on society. They at least are clear of the eternal struggle for gain, and have leisure and taste for cultivating the graces of life. The enemies of Ame- rica may rejoice when the institution of Westpoint is abandoned by the Go- vernment.


I cannot speak so favourably of the rank and file of the army; one-third of them are Irish and Germans of the very lowest class. Although their term of enlistment is only for three or five years, thirty in a hundred desert annually. Their pay is about a shilling a day above the cost of their clothing and living. The uniform is not calculated to show them off to advantage: their performance under arms is very inferior—at drill only I mean, for it is known that they can fight very well. Their barracks are generally much better than those of our ;mops: At first sight it appears strange, that when the officers are so very good the private soldiers should be so much the reverse; but the evil of the short period of service, rendered greater by desertion, and by their discontent at being worse off than their civilian fellow citizens, makes them but indifferent materiel. They are not regarded in a very kindly or respectful light by the lower classes of tbe people. It seems an instinct of the Anglo-Saxon race to dislike regular sol- diers, though they themselves make such good ones; perhaps it is from the mili- tary being associated in their ideas with despotic power.


There was no public reception during my very short stay, but I had the honour Of being presented to the President; At eleven in the forenoon we arrived at the White House, under the shade of our umbrellas; from the intense heat, a fire- king alone could have dispensed with this protection. It is a handsome building, of about the same size and pretensions as the Lord-Lieutenant's residence in the Platenix Park in Dublin; but, much as I had heard of the Republican simplicity ef the arrangements; I was not prepared to find it what it WA& We entered without ringing at the door: my kind guide, leading the way, passed through the lower remises, and ascended the staircase; at the top of which we saw a Negro, very plainly, in clothes of the same colour as his face. He grinned at us for a moment; and, calculating from the respectability of my companion that I did not mean to steal anything, was walking off, till he saw me, with a simple con- fident* which seemed to him too amiable to be allowed to suffer a betrayal, place ng umbrella in a corner before entering the gallery leading to the private a meats: he immediately turned to correct my error, informing me that if I hail any - farther occasion for its services I had better not leave it there "for some one proceeded till we arrived at. the door of the President's room. My guide knocked, and the voice of the ruler of millions said " Come in." Before obeying this command, I of course left my unfortunate umbrella outside: this done, I walked into the presence, and was introduced. • At the same moment, the watchful Negro, the guardian spirit of my endangered property, thrust it into my left hand, with another and stronger admonition to my simplicity; brit this time his tone of com- passion for my ignorance had degenerated into that of almost contempt for my obstinate folly. In the mean time, my right hand was kindly shaken by the Pre- sident, according to custom: he told me to be seated, and conversed with much urbanity. I, of course, trespassed on his valuable time but for a very few minutes, and then departed. He was sitting at a round table covered with papers; another gentleman, I pre- some a secretary, was seated at a desk near the window, writing. Mr. Polk is a remarkable-looking man; his forehead massive and prominent, his features marked and of good outline. The face was shaved quite close, the hair short, erect, and rather grey. Judging from his dress and general appearance, he might have been either a lawyer or a dissenting minister; his manner and mode of expression were not incongruous with his appearance.


In the number of my fellow passengers there were neither old nor young at least there were no venerable grey beads or cheerful boyish faces. In no part of the United States do the people seem to arrive at the average length of life of the Old World. The great and sudden changes of temperature, while perhaps they stimulate the energies of those who are exposed to them, wear out the stamina of the body and exhaust its vitality. The cares of manhood and the infirmities of second childhood are equally premature, denying the population the two loveliest but most dependent stages of existence, the idle but fresh and generous morning of youth, the feeble but soft and soothing evening of old age. In this country, we find even the climate in league with the practical in its influences on the powers of man, a goad to material prosperity. The child is pushed with a forcing power in- to the duties aod pursuits of maturer years; the man, when he ceases to be of ac- tive use, is hurried out of the busy scene, his part played. • The cumberers of the ground are but few; all work, none play. They go more awkwardly about their amusements than any people I have ever seen elsewhere: their's is a dark and sombre path through life, though every step were on gold. Sarcastic wit will win from them a sarcastic grin; the happy conclusiosi of some hard-drivenbargain may raise a smile of satisfaction; but the joyful Must or cheerful laughter, the glee and. hilarity of a happy heart, you must go elsewhere to seek. They are not a healthy-looking race; the countenance is sallow, and marked early in life with lines of thought. The fresh pure glow of the gaxon cheek is never seen here. The men are tall, but not robust or athletic: they have no idea of the sports of the field, and rarely-or never join in any more active game than bowls or billiards. They do not walk, if they can ride; ride, if they can drive; or drive, if they can go by railway. Mind and body, day and night, youth and age, are given up to the one great pursuit of gain. Bat this inordinate appetite for acquiring is in their cha- racter deprived of some of its most odious features; it is rarely accompanied by parsimony or want of charity. I believe no people on earth can be more hospitable to their equals in worldly wealth, or more open-handed to the poor.


The manner of servants to their masters, and of the lower classes generally to their superiors, is much the same as in England; tradespeople, too, hold a like relative position. Your bootmaker does not consider that it adds to his import- ance or real independence to sit down in your room with his bat on, and whistle and spit while he takes your measure, as his Republican brethren in the United States would probably do. I made a small purchase from a man in a drop at Bal- timore, who was smoking a cigar, chewing tobacco, and eating a peach, at the same time: with so many pleasing and interesting occupations, he of course had not mach leisure to spare for civilities to his customer.

With the exception of a few of the lowest class, the Canadians are quite free from those very disagreeable habits which are so unpleasantly general among the Americans. Chewing tobacco is not the fashion, and they reserve their saliva for other purposes than those of a projectile nature. Their manners, customs, an& dress, are those of England, not of America; and in this there is a bond of union and sympathy, of which all astute politicians acknowledge the strength and value.


The people of New England are, without doubt, ve7 generally educated: rich and poor' indeed, have apparently the same opportunities, but practically they are different. The poor mans son has to lay aside his books for the axe or the plough, as soon as his sinews are tough enough for the work; the rich man's has more leisure to pursue his studies and complete them afterwards. However, he has but little to gam by eminence. The pursuit of wealth offers a readier course to dis- tinction; he meets here with numbers who have like objects, and whose conver- sation and habits of life are formed by them. The man who labours to be learned condemns himself to a sort of isolation: however precious the object may be to him, it is not current as value to others. Some there are whose love for knowledge is for itself alone, not for the honours and advantages derivable from it; these few conquer the great difficulties in the way and become really learned: but the ten- dency is to acquire as much information as may be absolutely necessary; then to set to work to apply it, and make it profitable for other purposes, but not to in- crease itself. Consequently, the greater part of the national mind is but a dead level, like the Prairies; rich and productive immediately round about the spot where it is worked for the uses of life, but with few elevations from which any wide or commanding view can be taken in the search for yet more fertile soil. This equality of education tells very well in enabling men to fulfil with pro- priety very different social positions from those in which they were born. The blacksmith who has made a fortune has only to wash his hands- and he does not find his new associates either so very highly cultivated, or himself so much the reverse, as to place him in an uncomfortable situation. For general utility' to the state, for the practical affairs of life, and for forcing men up to the almost uni- versal level of intelligence, the Democratic power has made admirable arrange- ments; but to go beyond that it has thrown almost insurmountable difficulties in the way, not by its laws, but by the habits which its laws engender.

Some passages towards the close treat of American subjects generally— as education, manners, character, the prospect of the Union continuing ; and are well worth perusal for their shrewdness of remark and vigour of style, though we may not always agree with the writer's conclusion. In course of time, he thinks, the United States will eventually break up into three communities—North-eastern, Souther; and Western. Such is the result to be predicated from natural circumstances, and society as controlled by them ; but the author of this work seems to think the dis- solution will take place in the usual course of progress, by the internal divisions it will cause. Of this we doubt. Should the valley of the Mississippi, the territories of Oregon and California, with the Northern parts of Mexico, be completely occupied, an empire so unwieldy and with such diverse characters and interests must divide; but force throughout nature seems a necessary element of change. Summer and winter depart with the equinoctial gales ; growing heat is got rid of by a storm; and the pent-up gases in the work-shops of the earth vent themselves in volcanoes. Organic changes in a state are rarely brought about with- Would be awe to walk into m" I of course took his counsel and my property, and out violence; and something that irritates men's minds to a pitch hr

which habit and feeling are alike overborne seems necessary to break up "the Union." This necessity is most likely to arise in a war, where the Atlantic States, suffering all the direct evils and paying all the ex- penses, will get so angry as to withdraw themselves from the Western belligerents, for the sake of peace. Had a war taken place on the Oregon question, this separation would possibly have been precipitated.