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themselves are grand rather than beautiful. There are no high mountains, but there is a succession of hills which group

themselves for ever without monotony. It is perhaps the ever-variegated forms of these bluffs which chiefly constitute the wonderful loveliness of this river. The idea constantly occurs that some point on every hillside would form the most charming site ever yet chosen for a noble residence. I have passed up and down rivers clothed to the edge with continuous forest. This at first is grand enough, but the eye and feeling soon become weary. Here the trees are scattered so that the eye passes through them, and ever and again a long lawn sweeps back into the country, and up the steep side of a hill, making the traveller long to stay there and linger through the oaks, and climb the bluffs, and lie about on the bold but easy summits. The boat, however, steams quickly up against the current, and the happy valleys are left behind, one quickly after another. The river is very various in its breadth, and is constantly divided by islands. It is never so broad that the beauty of the banks is lost in the distance or injured by it. It is rapid, but has not the beautifully bright colour of some European rivers, ----of the Rhine for instance, and the Rhone. But what is wanting in the colour of the water is more than compensated by the wonderful hues and lustre of the shores. We visited the river in October, and I must presume that they who seek it solely for the sake of scenery should go there in that month. It was not only that the foliage of the trees was bright with every imaginable colour, but that the grass was bronzed, and that the rocks were golden. And this beauty did not last only for a while and then cease. On the Rhine there are lovely spots and special morsels of scenery with which the traveller becomes duly enraptured. But on the Upper Mississippi there are no special morsels. The position of the sun in the heavens will, as it always does, make much difference in the degree of beauty. The hour before and the half-hour after sunset are always the loveliest for such scenes. But of the shores themselves one may declare that they are lovely throughout those 400 miles which run immediately south from St. Paul.

About half-way between La Crosse and St. Paul we came upon Lake Pepin, and continued our course up the lake for perhaps fifty or sixty miles. This expanse of water is narrow for a lake, and by those who know the lower courses of great rivers, would hardly be dignified by that name. But, nevertheless, the breadth here lessens the beauty. There are the same bluffs, the same scattered woodlands, and the same colours. But they are either at a distance, or else they are to be seen on one side only. The more that I see of the beauty of scenery, and the more I consider its elements, the stronger becomes my

conviction that size has but little to do with it, and rather detracts from it than adds to it. Distance gives one of its greatest charms, but it does so by concealing rather than displaying an expanse of surface. The beauty of distance arises from the romance, the feeling of mystery which it creates. It is like the beauty of woman which allures the more the more that it is veiled. But open, uncovered land and water, mountains which simply rise to great heights with long unbroken slopes, wide expanses of lake, and forests which are monotonous in their continued thickness, are never lovely to me. A landscape should always be partly veiled, and display only half its charms.

To my taste the finest stretch of the river was that immediately above Lake Pepin; but then, at this point, we had all the glory of the setting sun. It was like fairy land, so bright were the golden hues, so fantastic were the shapes of the hills, so broken and twisted the course of the waters! But the noisy steamer went groaning up the narrow passages with almost unabated speed, and left the fairy land behind all too quickly. Then the bell would ring for tea, and the children with the beef-steaks, the pickled onions, and the light fixings would all come over again. The care-laden mothers would tuck the bibs under the chins of their tyrant children, and some embryo senator of four years old would listen with concentrated attention, while the negro servant recapitulated to him the delicacies of the supper-table, in order that he might make his choice with due consideration. “Beef-steak," the embryo four-year old senator would lisp, “and stewed potato, and buttered toast, and corn cake, and coffee,-and-and-and; mother, mind you get me the pickles."

St. Paul enjoys the double privilege of being the commercial and political capital of Minnesota. The same is the case with Boston in Massachusetts, but I do not remember another instance in which it is so. It is built on the eastern bank of the Mississippi, though the bulk of the State lies to the west of the river. It is noticeable as the spot up to which the river is navigable. Immediately above St. Paul there are narrow rapids up which no boat can pass. North of this, continuous navigation does not go; but from St. Paul down to New Orleans, and the Gulf of Mexico, it is uninterrupted. The distance to St. Louis in Missouri, a town built below the confluence of the

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three rivers, Mississippi, Missouri, and Illinois, is 900 miles; and then the navigable waters down to the gulf wash a southern country of still greater extent. No river on the face of the globe forms a highway for the produce of so wide an extent of agricultural land. The Mississippi with its tributaries carried to market, before the war, the produce of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana. This country is larger than England, Ireland, Scotland, Holland, Belgium, France, Germany and Spain together, and is undoubtedly composed of much more fertile land. The States named comprise the great centre valley of the continent, and are the farming lands and garden grounds of the western world. He who has not seen corn on the ground in Illinois or Minnesota, does not know to what extent the fertility of land may go, or how great may be the weight of cereal crops. And for all this the Mississippi was the high road to market. When the crop of 1861 was garnered this high road was stopped by the war. What suffering this entailed on the South, I will not here stop to say, but on the West the effect was terrible. Corn was in such plenty, Indian corn that is or maize, that it was not worth the farmer's while to prepare it for market. When I was in Illinois the second quality of Indian corn when shelled was not worth more than from eight to ten cents a bushel. But the shelling and preparation are laborious, and in some instances it was found better to burn it for fuel than to sell it. Respecting the export of corn from the West, I must say a further word or two in the next chapter; but it seemed to be indispensable that I should point out here how great to the United States is the need of the Mississippi. Nor is it for corn and wheat only that its waters are needed. Timber, lead, iron, coal, pork, all find, or should find, their exit to the world at large by this road. There are towns on it, and on its tributaries, already holding more than one hundred and fifty thousand inhabitants. The number of Cincinnati exceeds that, as also does the number of St. Louis. Under these circumstances it is not wonderful that the States should wish to keep in their own hands the navigation of this river.

It is not wonderful. But it will not, I think, be admitted by the politicians of the world, that the navigation of the Mississippi need be closed against the West, even though the southern States should succeed in raising themselves to the power and dignity of a separate nationality. If the waters of the Danube be not open to Austria, it is through the fault of Austria. That the subject will be one of trouble no man can doubt; and of course it would be well for the North to avoid that, or any other trouble. In the meantime the importance of this right of way must be admitted; and it must be admitted also that whatever may be the ultimate resolve of the North, it will be

very difficult to reconcile the West to a divided dominion of the Mississippi.

St. Paul contains about fourteen thousand inhabitants, and, like all other American towns, is spread over a surface of ground adapted to the accommodation of a very extended population. As it is belted on one side by the river, and on the other by the bluffs which accompany the course of the river, the site is pretty, and almost romantic. Here also we found a great hotel, a huge square building, such as we in England might perhaps place near to a railway terminus, in such a city as Glasgow or Manchester; but on which no living Englishman would expend his money in a town even five times as big again as St. Paul. Everything was sufficiently good, and much more than sufficiently plentiful. The whole thing went on exactly as hotels do down in Massachusetts, or the State of New York. Look at the map, and see where St. Paul is. Its distance from all known civilization,--all civilization that has succeeded in obtaining acquaintance with the world at large, is very great. Even American travellers do not go up there in great numbers, excepting those who intend to settle there. A stray sportsman or two, American or English, as the case may be, makes his way into Minnesota for the sake of shooting, and pushes on up through St. Paul to the Red River. Some few adventurous spirits visit the Indian settlements, and pass over into the unsettled regions of Dacotah and Washington territory. But there is no throng of travelling. Nevertheless, an hotel has been built there capable of holding three hundred guests, and other hotels exist in the neighbourhood, one of which is even larger than that at St. Paul. Who can come to them, and create even a hope that such an enterprise may be remunerative ? In America it is seldom more than hope, for one always hears that such enterprises fail.

When I was there the war was in hand, and it was hardly to be expected that any hotel should succeed. The landlord told me that he held it at the present time for a very low rent, and that he could just manage to keep it open without loss. The war which hindered people from travelling, and in that way injured the innkeepers, also hindered people from housekeeping, and reduced them to the necessity of boarding out,-by which

the innkeepers were, of course, benefited. At St. Paul I found that the majority of the guests were inhabitants of the town, boarding at the hotel, and thus dispensing with the cares of a separate establishment. I do not know what was charged for such accommodation at St. Paul, but I have come across large houses at which a single man could get all that he required for a dollar a day. Now Americans are great consumers, especially at hotels, and all that a man requires includes three hot meals with a choice from about two dozen dishes at each.

From St. Paul there are two waterfalls to be seen, which we, of course, visited. We crossed the river at Fort Snelling, a ricketty, ill-conditioned building, standing at the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers, built there to repress the Indians. It is, I take it, very necessary, especially at the present moment, as the Indians seem to require repressing. They have learned that the attention of the federal government has been called to the war, and have become bold in consequence. When I was at St. Paul I heard of a party of Englishmen who had been robbed of everything they possessed, and was informed that the farmers in the distant parts of the State were by no means secure. The Indians are more to be pitied than the farmers. They are turning against enemies who will neither forgive nor forget any injuries done. When the war is over they will be improved, and polished, and annexed, till no Indian will hold an acre of land in Minnesota. At present Fort Snelling is the nucleus of a recruiting camp. On the point between the bluffs of the two rivers there is a plain, immediately in front of the fort, and there we saw the newly-joined Minnesota recruits going through their first military exercises. They were in detachments of twenties, and were rude enough at their goose step. The matter which struck me most in looking at them was the difference of condition which I observed in the

There were the country lads, fresh from the farms, such as we see following the recruiting sergeant through English towns; but there were also men in black coats and black trousers, with thin boots, and trimmed beards,-beards which had been trimmed till very lately; and some of them with beards which showed that they were no longer young. It was inex, pressibly melancholy to see such men as these twisting and turning about at the corporal's word, each handling some stick in his hand in lieu of weapon. Of course they were more awkward than the boys, even though they were twice more assiduous in their efforts. Of course they were sad, and wretched. I saw men there that were very wretched, -all but heart-broken,



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