Page images


rica, saying as how it was a land of them out of the country, to hinder liberty."-"You tell me falsehoods !”government from getting air of the exclaimed the Captain. “I know that transaction. Things on board are not you and your companion have com- what they should be. It's useless to mitted some great crimes, and fled say much now, but I know what I from justice. You are either robbers, know-mark my words !” He then murderers, or forgers; but you shall walked away with a solemn shake of not escape, for I mean to deliver you the head, while his fellow-passengers over to the civil power the moment looked reverently after him, and apwe reach Quebec; so either look to peared to suspect that he was acquaintyourselves, or jump overboard at once. ed with some important circumstances Get out of my sight; and, after this, which he did not choose to communitake care how you come farther aft cate. than the mizen måst."

The preacher, already mentioned, The Captain now ordered that the delivered another sermon, on the se two refugees should be strictly watch- cond Sunday that occurred on board, ed, and kept separate from the other and received much applause and com- passengers, and likewise bid the mate mendation from his auditors. En

give them a small daily allowance of couraged by this, he began to imagine provisions. He then went down to that he possessed greater influence the cabin, and retired to his birth. over the emigrants than he really did, The emigrants immediately commen- and accordingly presumed to interced a discussion upon the events of fere with their amusements, and to the night, and the proceedings that admonish them about their iniquities, had recently taken place in their pre- whenever he felt inclined. They subsence. They all seemed highly dissa- mitted to this for some time without tisfied with the lenient treatment which openly rebelling, but his popularity the felons, (as they called them,) had diminished very fast, and his congremet with, and unanimously voted that gation often criticised his sermons they ought to have been thrown over- among themselves, and occasionally board the moment they were disco- hinted to one another that he was no vered.

“I daresay the like of this better than he should be. was never heard of,” said a woman- One evening, when we had calm “The ship is worse than a jail now- weather, and a tranquil sea, a young we may be robbed and murdered in man came from the steerage with a our beds before morning-It's a shame violin under his arm, and proposed to that such vagrants should be allowed his fellow-passengers that they should to dwell among Christians.”—“Ay, have a dance. All parties agreed to ay," cried an old man; “ we've seen this, and the decks being cleared as the effect of having bad company much as possible, a reel was soon among us already—What brought on formed, and the musician played a the storm but these two Jonahs that Scotch strathspey, which seemed equalnow walk at large before us? If the ly to delight the dancers and the specCaptain had read his Bible he would tators. However, the preacher sudhave used them very differently from denly made his appearance, and interwhat he has done." -- Don't speak rupted the gaiety, by commanding the of their usage !” exclaimed the female, partakers of it to desist from such a ' for it's too bad. Instead of hanging profane and sinful amusement, if they them, he has ordered that they should valued their safety now, and their get provisions like us. Think of that! happiness hereafter. This speech exWe honest folks are obliged to pay a cited universal disgust and derision, heavy fee for our passage, while vaga- and a lively young woman rushed bonds like them get across the seas forwards, and seizing upon the diswithout putting down a stiver, and turber of the festivity, pulled him into are served with meat besides. Nothing the ring, saying she was resolved to but wickedness thrives in this world. have him for a partner. A loud laugh

_" It's my private opinion,” said a broke from the bye-standers; the fidman who had not yet spoken, “ that dler began to use his bow ; several the Captain is no great things him- couples joined in the dance; and the asself. I suspect these two fellows åretonished offender was dragged through friends of his own in disguise, and he it, notwithstanding his violent resisthas taken this method of smuggling ance, amidst the shouts and excla:

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


in the

[ocr errors]

ral way.


[ocr errors]

mations of those who witnessed the ding from our place of destinatán, in the beat the scene. However, he soon recovered his stead of approaching it.

which cont liberty, and darted into the steerage, The two men who had concealed diy weigh where he remained during the whole themselves in the hold soon ceaseul so of next day, but never afterwards at- excite almost any attention. The emi- (rein su tempted to preach before his fellow- grants studiously avoided the least in- Leht of ab passengers. On inquiry it was found tercourse with them, and they genethat he was a tailor, and could neither rally kept near the bows of the vessel

De enig read nor write. When this became during the day, but walked fore and super publicly known, those who had at first aft at night, when the former had rebeen his attentive hearers ridiculed tired to the steerage. They slept unhim most, and declared that they had der the bottom of the long-boat, no always felt convinced of his incapaci- place having been provided for their ty, but were unwilling to lower him accommodation below decks. in the estimation of others by saying While crossing the great bank at so, as long as he did no harm, and Newfoundland, the weather was so only declaimed against sin in a gene- calm and favourable, that the Captain

resolved to lie to for a few hours, that the Meanwhile we were blessed with we might have the pleasure of catchfair weather and favourable winds, ing some cod. The emigrants, the and made rapid progress across the moment he announced this determinaAtlantic. Most of the emigrants had tion, began to prepare their fishing become reconciled to a sea life, and tackle. Some baited small books at- or the those who still disliked it consoled tached to hair lines, others brought themselves with the prospect of soon out roads and pirns, and one man proba th reaching the termination of the voy- duceda pocket-book fullof dressed flies, ka age. Though day after day passed in and asked the mate if any of them monotonous routine, no one seemed would do. However, they were soon ever to wish for the arrival of the mor- convinced of the inefficiency of the row, experience having taught us that angling apparatus which they had pronothing new was to be anticipated or vided, and as the tackle belonging to the looked for, while we remained on the ship was distributed chiefly among board. In the absence of all variety, the seamen, few of the emigrants had the most trifling circumstances acqui- an opportunity of participating in the red interest and importance. The ap- sports. But those who possessed the pearance of a piece of sea-weed, a flock means of engaging in it, betrayed the disease of birds, or å shoal of fishes, exci- most extravagant delight when they ted the earnest attention of the pas- happened to catch anything, and would sengers, and furnished them with not allow the fish they had pulled out subjects of conversation during many to be mingled with those that had been succeeding hours; and it was highly caught by others, though the Captain amusing to listen to the different the informed them that a general division ories that were brought forward in ex- of the spoil would take place in the planation of such phenomena, by the course of the day. After laying to self-importantdisputants, as they strol. some hours, the wind began to freshen, led about the decks, or reclined indo- and we set sail. The mate then dislently upon the hen-coops. Discussions tributed the fish in equal portions respecting the distance we were from among the steerage passengers, but, Quebec took place every day, and, as although he observed the strictest imthe captain and mate disdained an- partiality, much dissatisfaction prevailswering any inquiries upon this point, ed, and almost every one thought his the emigrants had recourse to the man neighbour had been more liberally with the quadrant, (as they called dealt with than himself. Complaints him,) for a solution of their difficul- and accusations were heard upon

deck ties. He seemed highly flattered by all day long, and the morning's diversuch marks of confidence, and always sion, instead of adding to the enjoytold consequentially what number of ment of those for whose sakes it was miles of ocean we had still to traverse, projected, gave birth to discontent, though his hearers, had they recollect- envy, and recrimination. ed his previous calculations, would While we were in the Gulf of St sometimes have been startled to find, Lawrence, the Captain and mate bethat, according to him, we were rece- gan to be on very bad terms. The

[ocr errors]

lo The

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Es age.

latter kept the key of the store-room, tude and latitude in which the events which contained the provisions, and referred to took place, were inserted at daily weighed out to the passengers full length. No one disputed the reatheir respective allowances; but the sonableness of this demand, and the Captain suspected that he was in the business was soon adjusted to the sahabit of abstracting an extra quantity, tisfaction of all parties. and afterwards privately selling it to The ship remained without a mate the emigrants. Various articles had during two days, but in consequence disappeared at different times, and he of the favourableness of the weather, professed to be unable to explain what we suffered little from the want of had become of them. This roused the him. The morning of the third set Captain's attention, and, being a vio- all things to rights again; for one of lent man, he one day accused the the emigrants informed the Captain mate of fraud and peculation before that he had heard Hurder and his all the emigrants, and stated, that companion whispering together in the there were three persons on board store-room the preceding night. On who could give evidence in proof of examination, we found that a consiwhat he said. The former denied the derable portion of the floor of the apartcharge with boldness, and a furious ment was loose, and that the two felaltercation took place between the lows could have access to the provisions two, which terminated in the mate's whenever they chose. They were imrequesting permission to go forward mediately searched, and several articles among the seamen, or, in other words, being found upon them, the Captain to resign his situation. The Captain had no longer any suspicion of the told him the sooner he did so the bet- mate's integrity, and at once restored ter, and, accordingly, he carried his him to favour, and begged him to retrunk from the cabin that very day, sume his situation, and forget the past. and took up his quarters in the steer- He willingly did so, and received the

congratulations of all the emigrants, All the passengers felt a deep inte- except those who had drawn up the rest in this quarrel, for they conceived, certificate about his honesty, and who from the hints which the Captain had said, they thought the Captain ought thrown out respecting the persons who to have made him prove his innocence could prove his assertions, that their before he reinstated him in his emcharacters were implicated in it. They ployment. therefore discussed the matter at great



above the mouth length among themselves, and almost of the St Lawrence, we were becalmed unanimously agreed that the mate was nearly a whole day within half a mile innocent of the crimes laid to his of a large ship. The emigrants indulcharge. The females advocated his ged in various speculations about the cause with much warmth; for his po- port she sailed from, her place of desliteness, good looks, and misfortunes, tination, her tonnage, her crew, and had won their hearts completely. Some her cargo; and had got deeply involproposed to petition the governor in ved in hypothetical mazes, when they his favour whenever we reached Que- saw her jolly-boat let down. A num bec, and a man, who had neither shoes ber of men then stepped on board, and on his feet, nor a hat on his head, immediately began to row towards us. urged that a subscription should be Our female passengers, on seeing this, raised to compensate him for the loss descended into the steerage, but shortly of his situation. However, it was fi- came upon deck again, arrayed in clean nally agreed that a certificate of his caps,gaudy ribbons, and Sunday gowns; innocence and good conduct, signed by and endeavoured to attract the admievery one on board, would answer the ration of our expected visitors by talkbest purpose. Several of the leading ing affectedly, and leaning over the persons soon prepared this document, bulwarks ; while the men stood eyeing and went about requesting their fellow- them askance, with a repulsive, scrupassengers to put their names under tinizing, and suspicious expression of it

, none of whom made any objection, countenance, very often assumed by except the man with the quadrant, the Scotch peasantry when they are on who, on the paper being presented him the point of coming into contact with for signature, said he would have no- strangers. The boat soon came along,

to do with it, unless the longi- side, and most of the party sprung on Yol. X.

3 N

a little


board our vessel, without salutation or incredulously, and said, they derived ceremony; They proved to be Eng- their information from a man who had lishmen, but any observer would have read books upon the subject, and knew instantly discovered this from their all about the matter. ruddy, comfortable-looking counte- In the morning we found ourselves nances, which appeared to much ad- a considerable way up the St Lawrence, vantage when contrasted with the the gradually increasing narrowness of hard, spare, emaciated features, of the which now permitted us to have a more people on board our ship. Nautical distinct view of its banks, the farther inquiries soon took place, and our vi- we advanced. The emigrants contemsitors informed us that they were emi- plated with delight, the fields, trees, grants bound for Upper Canada. This cattle, and farm-houses, that occasionintelligence did not appear to be much ally presented themselves on both sides, relished by our passengers, one of and spoke enthusiastically of the pleawhom immediately stepped forwarıl, sures of a country life, and wished and asked if they had any coopers in they could get ashore, to drink milk, their party. Being answered in the and lie on the grass. They seemed negative, he expressed great satisfac- quite relieved to discover that the hation, and said he was a cooper himself, bitations, vegetable productions, and and wished to be first in market. This general appearance of Canada, were speech excited a laugh, which, in some neither comfortless, extraordinary, nor degree, removed the restraint that had revolting. Their spirits got up, and previously prevailed, and rendered they began to anticipate the blessings both parties more communicative. The and enjoyments which a residence in Englishinen were then requested to such a country would be the means of mention what sort of trades-people and securing to them, and informed each mechanics they had on board their other what particular branches of agrivessel, and the emigrants assembled culture they intended chiefly to pursue, round them, and listened anxiously to when they had cleared and improved the agitating enumeration. When it their farms, and overcome their first happened that persons of the same difficulties. The conversation soon profession were shewn to be in both turned entirely upon crops, soils, and ships, a loud laugh of derision took manure ; and weavers, who, before place, and a number of uplifted fingers embarking for America, had never pointed out the unfortunate man who been beyond the suburbs of Glasgow, had, in a manner, encountered com- talked about the management of land petitors before reaching the theatre of with the greatest confidence, and sugaction; but an opposite discovery af- gested the propriety of partially introforded delight to none, but the indi- ducing the British system of agriculvidual who was personally interesterl, ture into Canala. and sneers about good fortune and We reached the harbour of Quebec lucky fools passed between those that late one afternoon, and immediately stood around him.

dropped anchor in front of the town. The Englishmen, after having given The emigrants gazed on the rocks, the a full account of themselves, and of tremendous battlements, the shipping, their purposes and intentions, returned and the boats hurrying backwards and to their own vessel. "At night, we got forwards, with deep interest; while a fine breeze directly astern, and stood those who had any knowledge of his. up the St Lawrence under all sail, tory, began to talk of the celebrated much to the satisfaction of the emic siege at which Wolfe was killed, and grants, who were exceedingly anxious pointed out, to their admiring audithat we should reach Quebec before tors, in what manner they conceived the other ship; for they supposed, that the city might yet be taken by an eneif she arrived first, her passengers my. Others complained how much the would take all the land that was to be prospects around had disappointed granted in the vicinity of the town, them, and said, Quebec was just like and render it necessary for the last- a Scotch town, and therefore not worth comers to settle far away in the woods. looking at. One man asserted, that It was useless to attempt to combat the fortifications of Edinburgh Castle this idea, or to state, that the ground were much stronger than those they destined for them lay in the interior of then saw, and this produced a dispute, the country, for they shook their heads which was interrupted by the arrival






of the harbour-master, who came ashore. But some, who had talked alongside in a beautiful boat manned much of the great connexions they with French Canadians. He ordered had in Quebec, the letters of introducall the passengers to be mustered upon tion and recommendation they were deck, and called them over, that he provided with, and the flattering at might ascertain if each individual an- tentions they expected to receive when swered the description annexed to his they delivered them, seemed suddenly name in the Custoin-house list. This to forget all these things, and to bebeing accomplished, the Captain desi- come alike friendless and unknown. red Hurder and his companion to come They never even proposed to visit that forward, and then explained to the city, which had once been a place of harbour-master how they had got in- such promise to them, although it lay to the ship without his knowledge or directly before their eyes. Others, who consent. The former bid the mate

were prevented by the deficiencies of detain them on board until farther or- their wardrobes from making a respectders, and then took leave, after his able appearance, declared that they crew had received a quantity of provi- would rather remain on board, than sions as their usual perquisite. wander through dusty streets, where

None of the emigrants went ashore nothing at all remarkable or intereste that night. They continued walking ing was to be seen. Pride soothed the the deck till a late hour, and anti- pangs of disappointment during the cipating the pleasure they would have day, and at night envy found a balm in rambling through Quebec next in the triumph of ill-nature; for those morning: Montreal was the place of who had been ashore came back weary, our ship's destination, and the greater dispirited, and out of humour, and part of them meant to remain on board again took up their abodes in the steer. until we reached that city, in order to age, and endeavoured to console themsave the expence of going there in a selves with the hope of finding Monsteam-boat.

treal a prettier, larger, and more enAt an early hour on the succeeding tertaining town than Quebec. day, all the emigrants were in motion, I left the ship next morning, and on The Captain informed them that the the succeeding day saw her bear up the vessel would lie at anchor for two St Lawrence, under the influence of a

days, and that those who chose might favourable wind. The emigrants wasi go ashore and visit the town, provided ved their hats to me, and I accompa

they returned on board within the time nied my return of the salute with fer* specified. This intelligence being pro- vent wishes that the comforts, bless

inulgated, many of the females and ings, and advantages of the land to young men hastened to dress them- which they were hüstening, might exselves in their best apparel, that they ceed their warmest and earliest antici

might be ready to secure places in the pations. • ship's boat, the first time it was sent




of hypothetical conjecture and antiWith this I send you some specimens quarian research. But to the reader of translation from the great Northern of poetry,—to him who loves beautiBard of antiquity, whose works - ful imagery, sublime sentiment, and thanks to the fostering care and fa- deep pathos for the corresponding feeltherly protection of some one or otherings which they awaken in the bosom, -have come to us in tolerable preser- wholly unconnected with the tendenvation ; yet whose very existence, (mi- cy to any particular bias, it must be rabile dictu !) is a matter of the strong- a matter of moonshine whether the est doubt. As to the authenticity of whole, or only a part, was generated i the works ascribed to Ossian, there is by the son of Fingal, or if the entire

certainly abundant cause for scepti- structure was elaborated within the 1.cism; and from the days of Samuel pericranium of our more modern friend, Johnson, down to those of Malcolm James Macpherson, Esq. Are the wri

Laing, Wordsworth, and the author tings of Rowley destitute of merit, i of Waverley, it has furnished an in- because we know them to be the comexhaustible subject for the exhibition position of the boy Chatterton ?

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »