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being lost on a lea-shore ; for they can sail much nearer the wind and do not make near so much lea-way. I will conclude my account of the American vessels, by saying a few words about the Packet ships, that sail from New York to Liverpool and Havre de Grace.
They are fitted up in a style of the greatest magnificence. Indeed every thing is lavished upon them that luxury can devise, or comfort require. Handsome carpets, ornamented lamps, silk curtains, a profusion of gilding, glass, and mahogany; a piano-forte and sofas in the ladies' cabin; baths, &c. &c.
“ The Paris," a packet-ship trading to Havre, had a cabin fitted up in the most splendid style I ever saw in any vessel, except perhaps in the Royal Yachts of the King of England. The curtains of the births were of rich straw-coloured silk, and the sides of the cabins were of rosewood, mahogany, and curled maplė. Moreover, the intervals between the doors of the different state rooms, were panelled with mirrors, and would have reminded me of the appearance of the “ Café des Milles Colonnes," if that glory of the Palais Royal had not been far inferior in cleanliness.
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THE HUDSON-THE MILITARY COLLEGE.
LEAVING New York, I went on board the steamboat, and began to ascend that magnificent river the Hudson.
On the Jersey shore I was pointed out the situation of Hoboken, a place to which so many persons resort for the purpose of fighting duels, that it may be called the “ Chalk Farm ” of the United States. In the event of an accident, the survivors cross the Hudson to the State of New York, and thus avoid the possibility of an arrest ; for one State does not take cognizance of a breach of the laws committed in another, except in particular cases. Much has been said in America upon the subject of duelling, and many laws and regulations have been made with the view of putting a stop to it, but like all similar laws in France, England, &c. they are perfectly nugatory.
In the United States as in England, a Jury would never find a man guilty of murder provided the affair has been honourably conducted. For my own part indeed I hope no act of legislation will be devised, capable of putting a stop to duelling; for I consider it one of the greatest safeguards of polished society, and the surest pledge of courtesy and decorum.
Fifteen miles up the river we passed Haerleme Creek, which by joining the Hudson to Long Island Sound, forms the Ísland of Manhattan on which the City of New York is built. Above this, the cliffs of the Jersey shore, called the Palisades, are very remarkable, and give a fine character of grandeur to the river below. In many places they form a perpendicular line of rock, resembling an old wall, two or three hundred feet in height.
Beyond the Palisades, our vessel entered that part of the Hudson where it expands and forms “ Tappaan Bay.” This was originally named the “ Tappaan Sea.” by the famous Hendrick Hudson, who supposed it to be a lake, from which the river took its rise, and it is so laid down in some old maps. The little village of Tappaan is well known to most Englishmen, from being the place where Major André suffered the punishment inflicted by all nations upon a spy. Much as we may lament the fate of that gallant officer, one cannot but admire the firmness of Washington, who caused him to be executed, in spite of the menaces of the British, André's bravery and accomplishments were no palliation of the monstrous piece of treachery he was organizing with the infamous Arnold. An American writer has properly asked: “ Would the British have spared even Washington himself, if taken in disguise, with the proofs of such an act of treachery concealed on his person ?”
Beyond Tappaan Bay the Hudson contracts sud
denly, and is pent in on each side by steep, and in many places perpendicular cliffs, called “ The Highlands of the Hudson," It would be presumptuous to attempt any description of these magnificent scenes, as they have been for the most part described by that charming writer Mr. Irving, whose works may be considered as having rendered all this part of the country classical ground.
One of the most curious peculiarities in the Hudson, is, that although running through a coun. try of mountains, and actually cutting its way through that part of the Alleghanies denominated the Catskills, it has not a single fall or rapid to obstruct navigation. A line-of-battle ship can ascend it for eighty or pinety miles above New York, and very large sloops and schooners trade constantly between that city and Albany, a distance of 150 miles. In many parts of the Highlands, the cliffs are so steep and perpendicular, that the river has the appearance of flowing at the bottom of an enormous natural trench. At the top of the cliffs, and immediately at the edge, grow lofty woods of pine, which throw their shadows over the river below, and add to the magnificence and solemnity of the scene. · It is almost impossible to imagine a more beau. tiful or picturesque situation than West Point, where I left the steam-boat.
The Military College of the United States is erected on a fine large table land of between eighty
and ninety acres, which, by jutting out from the . mountains, seems to have prevented the Hudson, which flows round it, from preserving its straight course. The height of this table land above the river is 150 feet, while the rocks which form its sides are exceedingly steep, and in many places perpendicular. There is a small ledge at the foot, which serves as a landing-place, from which a road winds up to the College. Immediately behind the table-land, rise, very abruptly, and to a considerable height, the mountains that form part of the great chain of the Alleghanies. These mountains, which prevent all access to the College on the land sidle, rear their heads again on the opposite side of the river, and then stretch away to the New England States and the St. Lawrence.
Looking down the river, the prospect is not very extensive; but in the contrary direction, there is a most superb and magnificent view. The village of Newburgh, at a distance of nine miles, is visible in the back ground; and the river is so straight and broad, that it would almost have the appearance of an artificial piece of water if its uniformity were not pleasingly broken by a small wooded island in the midst of it. Far away are seen the lofty tops of the Catskills. The river op each side is pent in by fine forest-covered mountains, the rocky sides of which descend abruptly and in many places perpendicularly to the water's edge. As the mountains in this part of the coun