Jacksonian Miscellanies, #76

February 16, 1999

Asa Biggs Goes to New York via Washington in 1832

Copyright by the editor, Hal Morris, Hopatcong, NJ 1999. Permission is granted to copy, but not for sale, nor in multiple copies, except by permission.

Jacksonian Miscellanies is a weekly* email newsletter presenting short** documents from the United States' Jacksonian Era, which you can receive it for free by sending to hal@panix.com a message with

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Jacksonian Miscellanies can also be read at http://www.panix.com/~hal/jmisc. The WWW version is augmented with much biographical, bibliographical, and other information.

Please direct responses and comments to hal@panix.com,

For the following, we can thank a web resource that I highly recommend visiting. From their home page at http://metalab.unc.edu/docsouth/index.html:

One item of interest is the Autobiography of Asa Biggs, which contains the following notice:

Biggs (1811-1878) was a lawyer in Williamston, NC, who, at the time described had just begun his practice, at the age of 21, he was a Jacksonian, active in politics. In the 40s he served one term in the House of Representatives, and in the 1850s was sent to the Senate. Like many senators of the time, he resigned early (1858?), and became a New York (C District judge. He was active in the Secession Convention, and served as Confederate district judge throughout the war.

In this account, he describes travel by coach, on several steam boats, and by horse drawn railway, speeches by Hayne, JQ Adams, and McDuffie, some of the congressional trial of Sam Houston for assault, and a night of Washington theater, with a pretty singer. In New York, he attended the play "Cinderella", with a set piece of Mt. Vesuvius exploding at the end, and saw the aftermath of the collapse of the six-story Phelps and Peck warehouse. Returning via Baltimore, he saw the famous play of "Colonel Nimrod Wildfire", which contributed to the Davy Crockett myth.

He also describes, in some detail, shipbuilding, and the workings of a marvelous (for the time) drydock, and much besides, with a keen eye.

BACK IN 1832

WILLIAMSTON, April 18, 1832.

        Left Williamston about 9 o'clock went to Powells to dinner where there was cackling and crowing in the extreme and among the crowd some young men who revel in dissipation and whose heedlessness is a good lesson to those who indulge in vice. Arrived at Nickoles where we staid all night. Here I met with Mr. Simmons Sheriff of Halifax whom I found to be a very pleasant and agreeable man.

        [April 19th]. Left Scotland Neck 19th - four passenger - arrived at Winton about dark - to this place had a fine coach and good horses.

        [April 20th]. Left Winton 20th about four o'clock with eight passengers and after jolting and considerable fatigue got to Norfolk 1/2 after three - crossed the river in a steam boat which plies continually. Portsmouth, we passed so soon that I cannot tell much about it. Norfolk has the appearance of considerable business - many of the streets are very dirty. Should'ent suppose the corporation are very vigilant. We travelled in the stage with Genl. Blount of Nashville, N. C. whom I found to be a very pleasant man. We had also two Methodist preachers. They had not much peace and although they assumed a very grave appearance and occasionally groaned yet that had but little effect in checking the glee. We took in on the road a Mr. Craig, from Tallahasse, who is now with me at the Steam Boat Hotel and I think a fine young man. Mr. Shaw, Genl. Blount and the preachers left this evening for Baltimore in the Columbus. She is an elegant Boat.

        [April] 21st. After enjoying a good nights rest, with the exception of being once interrupted by the arrival of the Steam Boat, Mr. Craig and myself went over to Portsmouth and from there to the Navy Yard. Here we spent our time very interesting[ly]. We first visited the ship now building called New York, she is a 74: all enclosed in an excellent house - great many mechanics industriously engaged in building her - we went to the top deck - she has three decks - she is constructed of live oak timber almost entirely - she is a huge machine, we next visited the Delaware now lying at the wharf repairing - on board her I met with Dr. Baker, who accompanied us during the balance of our visit - here I could discover more about the management and apparatus of a ship. We next directed our steps to the Dry Dock and in going there we passed a great many shops and the commanding officer Comr. Warrington residence - which is tastefully arranged. The ship North Carolina is lying out in the stream all covered. The old ships Guirrere [sic] and Macedonia are also lying out in the stream. We arrived at the Dry Dock after passing several stoers [sic] houses and stones yards. Here I cannot attempt a discription of the importance and magnificence of this work. Suffice it to say it is constructed of solid stone in a cavity near, by throwing out the dirt for at least 25 feet below the surface of the water, and sufficiently long for a 74 gun ship to lie in. It is made in the form of a ship. The bottom is well secured by spiling and then solid rock for about six feet deep. It is to be construed [constructed] with gates so as to send a ship in by hoisting. There are now a great many hands engaged in building it, and it will take them twelve months longer to complete it. It is a grand work and bleeds Uncle Sam's pocket to excess I should suppose. Adjacent to it they are building a house and well which is to be used by steam engine to draw off the water from the dock, and when necessary to flood it again so as to float the ship. We returned and examined the arms. Shot and Balls in abundance may be found there and cannons numerous. Passing to and fro the Sentry may be seen, and occasionally a midshipman or L[i]eutenant as stiff as a poker and as proud as my Aung Peg. Upon the whole my visit there was very interesting and I derived some idea how the money was expended in the Navy Department. We crossed the river in a small Steam-Boat for which you have to pay 6 1/4 cts and it is very accommodating to the public as well as profitable to the owners. The Capt told me that he generally crossed 100 times in the day, and not less on an average, I suppose, cross than 6 or 8 persons. She crosses in four or five minutes. Portsmouth is a very pretty little place, but the corporation are kindred spirits with those of Norfolk.

        They neglect their streets and you find them dirty and disagreeable. It is not to be wondered at if malignant fevers are common and fatal in Portsmouth, and more especially in Norfolk.

        The Marine Hospital, which you see at a distance from Norfolk is a commanding Spectacle. It appe[a]rs to be a splendid establishment. This morning I went on board the Potomac and Pocahontas. The Pocahontas is a most splendid Boat.

        [April] 22st [nd]. Left Norfolk this morning 9 oclock in the Fredericksburg, run 18 miles in an hour and half; passing got a view of the Rip-Raps and Old Point Comfort. The Rip-Raps is an important work - with the aid of a Spye-glass I could ascertain how it was built. It is a solid bed of stone in 18 ft water, about 5 acres. There are 3 or 4 houses on it, and a wharf projects from it. It is truly a great work, and as is the necessary consequence must have cost an immense quantity of money. But they appeared inconsiderable, when compared with the battery and apparatus on Old Point. Here you see port-holes in every direction, and flags flying. I was informed that 100 guns could be made to bear on the size of a Hhd-head. It is a magnificent spectacle. Any attempt to pass up the river by an enemy would meet with warm work, too warm for comfort. I think it would be utterly impossible for an enemy to pass up between the Battery and the Rip-Raps.

        [April] 23th [nd]. This morning about 7 oclock we passed Mt. Vernon. Instinctively I became melancholy and the reflection that there lies the great and good man, our Country's Benefactor, struck me with awe. The Situation of my country in '76, the abject slavery to which we were reduced, the fearless and intrepid Spirits that dared to stand up and defend our rights, the melancholy spectacle which we presented during the great struggle for liberty, the grand instrument with all his virtues shining that effected so much; who by his address could check those disposed to murmur - establish the wavering, and inspire the whole with that love of liberty and equal rights that can effect almost impossibilities, the important advantage we derived from his firmness and wisdom in establishing our republic, all passed in review before my imagination, and could not fail to produce sensations uncommon. A profound reverence for the tomb of Washington, and an earnest desire that the same principles which he taught may continue to be inculcated and which are alone calculated to perpetuate this fair fabric. Mount Vernon is a beautiful situation. It possesses a commanding view of the Potomac. On the opposite point of land, Fort Washington is erected. It would be very difficult for an enemy to pass this place. Arrived at Washington 9 oclock took lodgings at Gadsbys. Here I met with Mr. T. Jones and Mr. Parker from Tarboro, visited the Capitol [as] soon [as] I arrived with Jones. The Capitol is so magnificent that I cannot attempt a description and therefore decline it. Suffice it to say, that the Rotunda is ornamented with four paintings by Trumbull, most superb and to the life. About 11 oclock the two Houses met went H. R. first, where I heard but little, petitions first presented, and then they took up the trial of Houston.* ((The trial of Sam Houston. Houston had visited Washington in the interest of the Cherokee Indians. While he was there William Stanberry, a member of Congress from Ohio, charged him with attempting to obtain a fradulent contract for furnishing supplies to the Indians. Houston, in retaliation, attacked Stanberry and beat him severely. He was tried and reprimanded at the bar of the House, and fined $500, but President Jackson remitted the fine)) This was so insiped that we left and went to the Senate. Here we heard a very interesting debate, on the appropriation for Minister to France. Several members were designated to me. The appropriation was lost by a majority of two. Returned to the Representative Hall, which adjourned in a few minutes, after having been engaged in the hearing of Houston's case. At night went to the Theatre, where I was considerably diverted. The celebrated Clara Fisher appeared. She is a beautiful girl, and performs admirably.

        [April] 24th. Walked up and examined the Presidents Palace and Secretaries offices. These are elegant. They are situated about 1 1/2 mile from the Capitol at the other end of Penn' Avenue. Returned to the Capitol and in a short time both houses met. Went to the Senate Chamber, where I had Judge Mangum* ((Willie P. Magnum)) called out, and after delivering my letter he appeared very glad to see me, invited us in the Chamber, where we remained for some time, during which time we heard a discussion on a question for reconsideration of the appropriation vote. Went to the H. R. and delivered my letter to Mr. Carson.** ((Samuel P. Carson, of Pleasant Garden, N. C., member of Congress, 1825 - 1833)) He is a very clever man and although according to the rules of the House we could not go into the Hall, he proferred to do anything for us to render us agreeable. The H. R. has been engaged all day in examining testimony on Houston's case. This I consider a complete farce. A useless expenditure of time and money, perhaps will cost the U. S. $100,000, and take up 3 or 4 weeks, and all for a petty assault and battery. It seems to me that our representatives are prostituting the powers vested in them. Mr. Branch*** ((John Branch, formerly Secretary of the Navy; then a member of the House of Representatives)) and Mr. Brown**** ((Bedford Brown, senior Senator from North Carolina)) are absent. After the adjournment of the Houses, went up to the top of the Rotunda although not without being much fatigued. Here we had a view of all the City and the surrounding country. It is 180 feet above the foundation of the building and 215 feet above the level of Penn Avenue.

        Washington is a pretty place and kept very clean, go what direction you choose, and you have elegant walks.

        [April] 25th. Visited Judge Mangum, who being engaged could not accompany us to the Presidents. Heard him converse about the important question of the decision [sic] of the Supreme Court. Visited the Senate, where I heard a discussion on the apportionment both by Mr. Webster, Dallas, Clayton, Moore and H[a]yne.***** ((George M. Dallas, of Pennsylvania; John M. Clayton, of Delaware; Gabriel Moore of Alabama; Robert Y. Hayne, of South Carolina)) Clayton is a very good speaker, pleasant in his manner. The H. R. were engaged in the examination of Houston's case. This frets me, whenever I go into the Hall and therefore stay but a very short time.

        [April] 26th. Mr. Mangum called on us and accompanied us to the President's. We were soon shown into his room and after introduction [he] appeared very familiar, open and frank, conversed without reserve, his countenance displays good-feeling, he is now very busily engaged. We only remained with him a few minutes. Went to the Capitol visited the Library which is a very pleasant apartment, here I was introduced to Mr. Sheppard of N. C.* ((William B. Sheppard, of Elizabeth City, member of Congress.)) I was also introduced to Maj. Donaldson.** ((Probably Andrew J. Donelson, the President's Private Secretary.)) Visited the H. R. there heard the defence of Houston's Counsel, Mr. Key,*** ((Francis Scott Key, author of "The Star Spangled Banner.")) until the adjournment of the House. The Senate sat today with closed doors. There were a great many persons in the Representative Hall, and gallery. Mr. Key made a very able argument.

        [April] 27th. Visited the H. R. with an expectation of hearing Mr. Key close his argument, but soon after I went in they voted to take the yeas and nays on a question of small importance and hearing that Mr. Key was prevented from closing his argument by indisposition, I left the Hall and went to the Senate Chamber. When I went in Mr. [Isaac] Hill from N. H. was reading a speech which was dry and insipid. This is the second time he has spoken, or read if you please, and there is no interest about him, he was succeeded by several Senators and last by Mr. Hayne who spoke about an hour and half, and the House adjourned before he concluded his speech. It was on the General Pension Bill. He was opposed to it. Among other of his arguments he said that every project was afloat now to draw money from the Treasury. He quoted several cases proposed by Senators which he considered entirely foreign from the object of their Legislation and dealt quite harshly with those whose only object it seemed to be, to draw money from the Treasury and devise projects to expend money so as to seem to have an excuse for levying taxes. General Hayne is a handsome speaker and becomes more and more interesting as he proceeds.

        The Senate adjourned until Monday next. I believe I shall remain here until Tuesday to hear him conclude his speech. I had some conversation to day with Judge Mangum relative to the Vice Presidency. He says, he is entirely uncommitted on the question. That he shall be governed by the course pursued by the friends of Mr. V. B.**** ((Martin Van Buren)) in Congress in assisting to adjust the Tariff. If that is adjusted satisfactorily this session, he is willing to go with his friends if the Choice of V. B. be it, but that if it is not settled, and Mr. V. B.'s friends here cooperate with Clay in preventing a settlement, that he shall proclaim to his friends and to the State that he will not support Van Buren, and that it is inconsistent with their interest to do so; and depend upon public sentiment for support; that he cannot consent to vote for a man, no matter who he may be, who, with his friends, will not assist in moderating this onerous system, but who will join sides with our oppressors. I coincide decidedly with Mr. Mangum, as I have always expressed myself on this subject; not that I would prefer V. B. to any man, but that I conceived him the only man on whom the party would concentrate generally, but that I will not - I can not vote for him, if he and his friends adhere to the policy of the American System and coincide with those who are attempting to fix upon us a system that will ultimately ruin us.

        [April] 28th. I visited the parade ground - here were assembled four uniform companies, three of which joined and formed a batallion - the display was quite interesting and the music animating. I marched with them about a mile when they were drawn up before a house and one of the companies was presented with an elegant stand of colors by a young lady. She made some remarks in presenting, which were answered, but as the crowd was so thick I could not hear them. I then visited the House of Representatives. When I went in Mr. Adams* ((*John Quincy Adams)) was speaking on the appropriation for a minister to France. He was against the conclusion of the Senate and for the appropriation. His remarks were very interesting. On the vote being taken they disagreed with the Senate by a majority of 30 - shortly after the house adjourned.

        [April] 29th. Sunday. This day I passed heavily - did not even go to church - I walked considerable but upon the whole I spent this day as dull as a Sunday in Williamston which bye the bye is not very lively.

        [April] 30th. Took a general walk through the Capitol into all the apartments - concluded my walk at the Senate Chamber, here I met with Judge Mangum who was wofully chagrined with the Tariff report from the Treasury Department - he conceives it will be detrimental to the Southern interest - he thinks the prospect for an equitable adjustment more gloomy now than at any time during this session. We are subject to Colonial vassalage, says he, more intolerable than the causes that led to our Revolution and that the South must be unanimous and manifest a determined resistance by protesting most solemnly against the system before we shall be able to rectify the abuses. Judge Mangum is a genuine Southerner - possessed of warm feelings for their interest, and repudiates the principles of our oppressors; he does not hesitate to call things by their right names and dauntlessly contemns those who sacrifices principles for men or office on the hope of office. I remained in the Senate Chamber for an hour or more when the House went into Executive Session with closed doors and so remained until adjournment.

I consequently was disappointed in not hearing Mr. Hayne conclude his speech on the Pension Bill. I however spent my time agreeably, for soon after I went to the Hall H. R. Mr. Clayton submitted the long looked for report on the Bank question - before how - ever the report was read Mr. McDuffie* ((*George McDuffie, of South Carolina.)) rose and in a speech stated his objections to the prominent features of the report which was dictated by the Majority - he was followed by Mr. Clayton, Mr. Conbreling [sic]** ((**Churchill C. Cambreleng, of New York. He was a native of North Carolina.)) and Mr. Adams and some others and the report was not read before the House adjourned. I presume, though the substance of it was, after an examination of the evidence advising the House not to recharter the Bank. Mr. Clayton is a bold, animated and intrepid speaker. I am disappointed somewhat in Mr. McDuffie - when he rises he appears considerable embarrassed and by no means is an agreeable speaker, I suppose his talent is more in writing than speaking. Great respect though is paid to him especially on this question, silence prevailed, as the discussion has been anxiously looked for for some days past Mr. Conbreling [sic] is quite a pleasant speaker. He s[p]eaks without embarrassment. Mr. Adams is quite a conspicuous member, and speaks on all important questions. His delivery is not very good, his voice weak. On Saturday he split off from the Opposition party and a[r]gued most strenuously for the Appropriation for an out fit of a minister to France. He succeeded in the measure.

        May 1st. This morning left Washington and dined at Baltimore. I was considerably disappointed in the country between Washington and Baltimore - for many miles the country is much broken, land poor and miserable buildings - small huts with thatched roofs - you have taverns in abundance - some look more like a pigstys than the mansion of a human being. I passed the battle ground which has nothing to distinguish it and which I should not have known but for information I derived from one of the passengers. I was though interested by a herd of deer 40 in number among which there were many young ones which I saw grazing in a pasture adjacent to the Road. The country is covered with oak and as you approach Baltimore some pleasant hills may be seen shaded by them. We crossed the Rail Road twice - once about 40 feet above it. I stopped at the Indian Queen Hotel and the street adjacent presents a very bustling aspect. I have travelled over Baltimore somewhat this evening. There is considerable business doing ap[p]arently and in some parts the streets are quite pleasant but the reverse is the case in other[s], particularly those when there is much business - they are kept dirty. I have seen some elegant draft horses here and some handsome harness horses.

        May 2nd. Went on board the steam boat Carroll at 6 oclock A. M. No person on board that I know. The scenery on the river not very interesting. Baltimore harbor is much smaller than I expected. The scenery on Elk river is quite interesting. I forgot to make some remarks about the girls in Washington and Baltimore. At Washington the streets were crowded with the exquisitely fashionable - they occupied conspicuous places in both Halls. I did not see but few that were pretty - those who attempted to be conspicuous for fashion were generally ugly. They are remarkable anxious to marry I understand and tax their ingenuity to entrap some of the big folks - this disposition I think was manifested by one towards me thinking I expect from my appearance I was a member of Congress, Governor of a state or Attorney General. She ogled me to excess and to prevent her having the advantage of me I ogled her back again; she was quite a pretty girl! but enough of the ladies of Washington. The street on which I stopped in Baltimore was considerably thronged through the evening with ladies prominading, [sic] some few might be called pretty, some dressed excessively fine and some of them were extravantly ugly. Traveled from.......... to New Castle on the Rail Road, 16 miles in an hour and 40 minutes, took the steam boat Robt Morris for Philadelphia. The country is level on the Rail Road generally - quite poor for a few miles [from] town but improve as you approach New Castle. Riding on the Rail Road is very pleasant, there was 17 persons in my car, we met several cars loaded with merchandise and it appears that a whole store was packed on them - they carry vast loads, the Horse that drawed [sic] our car after........... did not labour apparently in the least with the load. On board the Boat we had first rate eating and it was so much better than other places that I cannot omit noting it. I got the worth of my 50c here if I ever got it in eating a dinner. The banks of the Deleware [sic] presents a delightful scenery interspersed with houses and green valleys and occasionally a little village. I was much more pleased with the aspect of this country than any I had passed. I arrived at Philadelphia about 4 oclock. I have walked over the city considerable. It is handsomely arranged and some beautiful streets particularly Chestnut. That street presents quite a gay appearance - fashion may be seen sporting along through it and with it some very pretty girls. I am much pleased with this place. I have stop Hushills and

        May 3rd. Left Philadelphia in the Trenton at 6 oclock, stopped a few minutes [at] Burlington and Bristol. The scenery on the river still continuous beautiful with pleasant situations. Burlington has some very pretty dwellings on the river. Bristol is a considerable place much larger than I expected to see, we arrived at Trenton where we took the stage. The road for many miles was good but as we approached the rocks became worse and for the last part of the 25 miles was quite rough. On the south I passed large quantities of stone many places almost complet[e]ly covered some large some small and all the family of stones. We arrived at New Brunswick 1/2 after 1 and took the Boat Swan. New Brunswick is a much larger place than I expected to see. The country between Trenton and New Brunswick is very pretty. Princeton through which I passed is a delightful place. The Raritan is narrow and crooked for several miles from N. Brunswick but widens as you proceed - some pretty sites on it. I arrived at New York about 6 oclock, put up at U. S. Hotel where I found Mr. Bagley and Wm. Biggs.

        May 4th. I have travelled about considerable thro' the city - went with J. B. Townsend to the City Hotel, Exchange, U. S. Bank, Custom House and to complete the variety, visited G. Thorburn seed store, here I was much pleased - attached to the establishment is a fish pond and aviary, the flowers in many directions in full bloom and all presenting an interesting and cheering aspect. I have also visited several merchants to whom I have been introduced but the most appalling part of my excursions to day is yet to be told - while walking up Pearl Street my attention was directed to a crowd running up to Cliff and thinking there was a fire in that direction I also hastened there but when I arrived it turned out to be a splendid ware house 6 stories high just tumbled to the ground burying in its ruins many persons - number unknown supposed to be 10 or 15. It was an awful sight - in a short time the bells commenced ringing and the people collecting and in a few minutes a vast concourse of persons were crowding towards the place. The citizens fell to work immediately in pulling down the beams and Cotton Bales to extricate those underneath them - while I remained there two negroes were taken out - one not much, the other very much injured. I understand there are three clerks missing one of whom the firm (Phelps and Peck) had great confidence in and to whom they were very much attached. He was to be married in a few day to Mr. Phelps daughter. O how inconstant and uncertain are all things here - by a sudden convulsion the fondest hopes may be blasted and our future lives rendered miserable and irksome. A survey of the vast ruins - the reflection on the situation and feelings of the unfortunate sufferers and above all the premature death of the young man who was to be married, the agonizing feelings of his intended bride could not fail to render me u[n]happy - my feeling and my sympathy are very much aroused, and I go to bed under a strong excitement leaving an immense quantity of people surrounding the place and the firemen busily engaged in removing the rubbish.

        May 5th. This morning I hear that five persons have been taken out, 4 alive some severely injured and one dead, three or four are now in sight but cant be got out. I went to see the ruins this morning but vast crowds of people still are in the adjoining streets, they are yet ingaged in removing the rubbish, immense quantities of produce were stored which is scattered in every direction consequently there will be a great loss of property. This day I have travelled about a great deal, visited the ruins once or twice more, it is now enclosed and police guarding it - by a notice in an office I understand there have been 14 persons taken out, 10 of whom were dead. While I was standing surveying this scene the alarm of fire was [sounded] which I followed up Broadway but it ended in smoke as I met an engine returning. By the bye, it must be very perplexing and outrageous unpleasant for the firemen to be called a mile or two from home, fatigue themselves almost to death on a false alarm.

        May 6th. This morning with Mr. Bagley, Mr. Shaw and William visited Hoboken which is a very pleasant place, we enjoyed ourselves very well in drinking mead and eating cake and riding on the railroad which is propelled by your own hands. After dinner went to church where I spent my time very agreeable. At night took a long stroll up Broadway returned and went to bed.

        May 7th. Visited the City Hall and got admission in to the Governor's Room which was very interesting in examining the paintings that adorn the room; visited the Common Council in which I saw the banner that was displayed in the inauguration of Genl Washington and also the large chair in which he sat when it was performed.

        There are several relics of antiquity and in surveying this old arm chair I involuntarily seated myself therein - Why? Because the reflection was pleasant, that I had been seated in the same chair which our venerable benefactor had graced - upon the whole my visit here was quite interesting. I spent the balance of the day in walking the streets of the city and at night went to the Park Theatre, here I was considera[b]ly amused by the opera of Cinderella. They displayed some splendid scenery and the last a view of Mount Vesuvius was grand. There was a crowded house being the benefit of Miss Hughes a popular actress.

        [May] 8th. This day I have spent in walking about town and riding. I went up to Greenwich - here are some pretty dwellings and not so much crowded but it was with difficulty I could keep my eyes, for it was quite windy and clouds of dust flying in every direction. I staid there but a short time and hurried home with my eyes filled with dirt - had a very agreeable evening with J. and W. [?] Townsend.

        [May] 9th. Left New York with Mr. Bagley and William in the steam boat Swan, arrived at Philadelphia 1/2 after 6. I was very much pleased with the scenery this day, especially the land carriage from New Brunswick to Trenton; part of the time I rode on the outside with the driver, which gave me a good opportunity of surveying the country. Princeton, and the adjacent country, is a lovely place, vegetation has put forth considerable since I passed here last Thursday.

        [May] 10th. Left Philadelphia this morning and arrived at Baltimore about 4 oclock in the evening. Mr. Shaw was here passed a very pleasant evening in promenading the streets, here I met again with Mr. Craig - tonight we all visited the theatre and heard the humurous play of Col. Nimrod Wildfire by Hacket. I was very much amused at the many quaint expressions used.

        [May] 11. Left this morning 9 oclock in the steam boat Columbus and arrived at Norfolk about 5 oclock next morning; part of the night the sea was quite heavy, and the boat cracked enough to scare rats.

        [May] 12. At Norfolk we took the stage and arrived at Edenton about 9 oclock P. M. On this route we had a lively party - spent the time quite agreeable. We had a dusty road and on one stage a deficiency of horses that retarded us at least an hour. After taking supper at Hoskin's we went on board the steam boat and the night was pleasant - the moon shone very bright. We arrived at Jamestown about 4 oclock in the morning - here Mr. Bagley and William left in a double gig for Williamston, leaving me to bring up the baggage and take passage in a canoe; and here to cap the climax of communications and vehicles I was wofully chagrined, for I found a strong stream to contend with, and it was with difficulty we could stem the torrent; after several hours of hard struggling we landed at Williamston very much gratified to be able to put my foot on land and stretch my legs; found all my friends well; and thus ends the narration of my small travel.

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