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descendants are still in possession of their ancient patri-
mony. Amongst these is the respectable family of the
Van Rensselaers. They possessed, by patent, large
tracts of land which they leased out to the poor; they
were called patroons, which means landlord; they still go
by that name. The present patroon of Albany is Gen.
Stephen Van Rensselaer, one of the most worthy of the
human race. Butto return to Mrs. G.-" There was one
wide street in Albany which run parallel with the river.
The space between the street and the river was laid out
into gardens. There was another street which run east
and west, (now called State-street,) this street was
still wider than the other. In the middle of this street
stood all their public buildings. In the centre of the
town rose a steep hill; this last street passed over the
hill and descended rapidly towards the river; at the
bottom of this descent, stood the old low Dutch church.*
In the winter season the young people used to amuse
themselves by sleighing (so they do now,) down this
hill, the sleigh being pulled by themselves instead of hor-
I have enjoyed much pleasure in standing near
(continues: Mrs. Grant,) and contemplating this patri-
archal city; these primitive beings were dispersed in
porches, grouped according to similarity of years and
inclination; at one door young matrons, at another the
elders of the people; atla third, the youths and maidens,
gaily chatting or singing together; while the children
played around the trees, or waited by the cows (who
wore little tingling bells,) for the chief ingredient of
their supper, which they generally ate sitting on steps,
in the open air." "In my time," (continues the same
author,)" one of those vallies was inhabited by a
Frenchman; his residence was called a hermitage. The
Albanians respected him as something supernatural;
they imagined that he had retired to that sequestered
spot from having committed some deed in his life time;


*This, the oldest church in the Union, has very recently been pulled down as a nuisance; it was scarcely one story high, with painted glass in the windows. This painted glass was thus described to me by a lady of Albany :-Every member of the church, that is, the heads of families, had the escutcheon of his family, or his diploma, if a professional mang. painted on a page of glass, with his name, &c.]

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they considered him, however, in the light of an 'idola-
ter, because he had an image of the Virgin Mary.
There was always a governor, a few troops, and a small
Court in Albany."

Albany is in latitude 42 deg. 38 min. N., at the head of
tide water. Besides the public buildings already notic-
ed, it contains 2,000 houses and 17,000 inhabitants. Ie
is governed by a Mayor, Recorder, aud ten Aldermen.
The streets are paved and lighted. It is the oldest city
in the United States, next to Jamestown in Virginia.

Secretary Yates and Mr. Moulton are now engaged in
writing a complete history of this state. From the abil-
ity and talents of these gentlemen, and their indefatiga.
ble researches we may expect the best compilation that
has ever been published. Mr. Yates, the present Secre-
tary of State of New-York, is said to be a gentleman of
high literary attainments; and, from his appearance,
I would suppose him justly entitled to the character. He
is apparently about thirty years of age, middling stature,
and fine figure; his manners very suasive, his counte-
nance mild and pleasing. Mr. Moulton is also a gentle-
man of very interesting manners. But of all the gentle-
men I met with in Albany, I was most pleased with Gen.
Van Rensselaer, the present member of Congress, and
Mr. Southwick, the poet. Of Gen. Van Renselaer lit
tle may be said, his actions speak his praise wherever
he is known, and even where he is not. He lives at the
northern extremity of Market-street, quite out of the ci
ty. His house fronts the end of the street, and stands
near the Hudson. It is the finest building in the vicini-
ty; the ground, shrubberies, gardens and walks attached
to it are laid out in a style of taste, and elegance worthy
its generous owner. The ancestor of this great and good
man owned twelve miles square adjoining Albany, grant.
ed to him by the states of Holland. He leased those
lands out," while water ran, or grass grew," exacting
the tenth sheaf of grain the land produced. He reserv-
ed to himself a large demesne, which has descended to
the present patroon, as the general is called. He is in
every respect worthy his princely fortune; being one of
those rare few who may truly be said to lay up treasure

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Mandolin heaven. Perhaps no man of the present age can equal
Mary, him in acts of charity and benevolence. His house is
small the resort of the poor and the distressed, both strangers
and citizens. His purse and his heart are alike open to
all, he turns none empty away. When he is absent,
which is a great part of the year, his strict orders to his
steward are to relieve the poor. He has a great number
of tenants, many of whom often fall short of their rent,
and relate their inability to pay; when he has heard
their story, he, like Henry the fourth of France, pulls out
his purse and divides the contents with them. In short,
he is the idol of the poor, and the admiration of all who
know his worth. This amiable man is advanced in
years. In his person he is tall, slender, and perfectly
shaped, his eye a deep hazel, his countenance what his
actions bespeak, the very milk of human kindness.* Mr.
Southwick though not possesseci of a princely fortune,
has a princely heart, and "theagh his portion is but
scant, he gives it with good wili." Mr. S. once a man
of independence, has suffered shipwreck, and in the de-
cline of life has to struggle with untoward fortune, en-
cumbered with a numerous family. He is one of your
warm hearted yankees, though long a resident of this
place, the victim of a too generous heart. His misfor-
tunes it is thought, drew from him that beautiful poem,
"the pleasures of poverty." He is at present vending
lottery tickets, in a passage scarcely wide enough to turn
about in. He laughs at the incident, (speaking very
fast,) and says he must be going to heaven; "I am in
the straight and narrow way." He has nine (if not
more) sons, the handsomest youths I ever saw, and he
himself is the handsomest man I have seen in this state.



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Amongst the great men of Albany, it will be expected, particularly by my western friends, that I am not to overlook one whose fame is held in veneration by them; I ting mean Governor Clinton. His Excellency De Witt Clinry. ton, the present governor of New-York, is about fifty years of age; he is six feet (at least) in height, robust, and a little inclined to corpulency; he is straight and



* Mr. V. R. seems to consider himself as nothing more t than a steward put here for the benefit of others.

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well made; he walks erect with much ease and dignity; his complexion is fa.r, his face round and full, with a soft dark gray eye, his countenance mild and yielding; he regards you in silence, with a calm winning condescension, equally removed from servility and arrogance, while it inspires the beholder with admiration and spect. His whole deportment is dignified and commnanding, with all the ease and grace of an accomplished gentleman. Like all men of sense, he uses few words. I had two interviews with him, during which I never saw him smile, nor did he speak half a dozen words; in short, the predominant traits in his countenancé, are benignity, and modesty, lighted by 'genius. To a mind highly endowed by nature, he has added a rich store of practical and theoretical knowledge: in few words, Governor Clinton is a man of great size, great soul, great mind, and a great heart. To him may be applied that line of Thomson; "serene, yet warm; humane, yet firm his mind."-Perhaps his best eulogium is "The Governor of New-York." De Witt Clinton, Jun. about twenty. five years of age, promises fair to rival his father, in those qualities which constitute a great man. Fame begins to whisper his growing merit, and predicts the natural result of genius, improved by education. He is tall, and comely in his person, fair complexion, his features regular and handsome, his visage thin, his countenance soft, though luminous and pleasing. In his manners he is still more fascinating than his father. The ancestors of this distinguished family, were originally of Ireland; we hear of them, from their first arrival down to this day, filling the first offices of their country. Besides Mr. S. I met with many yankees in Albany, whose generosity and benevolence overwhelms a stranger with obligation and delight. Amongst these, I cannot forego a remark on O. Kane, Esq. His magnificent mansion and pleasure grounds, may well be styled an earthly paradise. He lives at the southern extremity of the city, in a most su perb building, which stands upon an eminence, with an extensive shrubbery in front, descending towards the Hudson. This shrubbery is enclosed by a parapet, and rommunicates with Market-street by an avenue leading aloud,


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It was my design to enliven these sketches with anecdotes, and detached incidents of daily occurrence, such as the gossip of the day, &c., but the principal subjects ished have so increased upon my hands, that I find it impossiwords.ble. I cannot, however, resist an anecdote of two countrymen at the theatre. They were in the same box with myself, and it appeared from their conversation, they ignity, had never witnessed a stage performance before. They ely en were both well dressed, the one a young, the other a actical midlde, aged man. The young man assumed a knowledge of the world, and explained to his friend the meaning of the wonders before them. "What is all them line of there things for, that's upon the doors, or whatever they are, that looks like they are painted, but I suppose that's the play," says the elderly man to his friend: "no, that's jest, I don't know what it's done for, but it isn't those the play," replied the friend: "You'll see live people a playing, and running about like mad, and making love, and making speeches, and the most funnyest things that ever you saw; John Steward says it will make you split your sides with laughing." "What's all them people soft, doing down there?" (pointing to the pit,) said the first, is still "O they're the players, you'll see um begin presently; of this (looking at his watch) it's most time." Thus the one continued to inquire, and the other to explain, until their patience became exhausted: the commencement of the play, being from some cause protracted nearly an hour rosity beyond the time mentioned in their bills, they in a vioation lent passion, at being cheated out of their money by a set of lazy fellows, that just made fun of them, were actually about to quit the box, when the bell rang, and I informed them the players were coming on the stage; at this moment the curtain flew up, and our fascinated strangers were amply compensated for the delay. It was amusing enough to hear them during the performance, "that's a tarnation pretty gall, is'nt she," all aloud. When the actress (as was sometimes the case,)

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