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save ye kindly, the king says back again to him—for ye must know that the king was a mighty p’lite man and prided himself on his jintility. “Ye look as if ye'd been up all night my man” says the king; troth, ye may say that, says the builder, and I've done a power of thinkin for yer majesty, but I've made an invintion that'l beat the world for kuteness, intirely, so it will, and is'nt it myself that's wake with fastin and study, so if yer plase my lord, I'l take a drink of wather to refresh me." The sorra, a taste of that same dirty stuff ye'l get here my man, says the king. Och musha, a worra sthruc thin, if I dont I'll not be able to stand up and insince your majesty into my plans, for it's going to faint I am, sure enough, if I dont git somethin to wet my lips with, says the builder. "No, no, my gossoon" says the king, no wather is iver drunk in my house; arrah masha, do ve think that I'm a haythen brute to let a christian crayther drink wather, whip I've loads and lashins of the real mountain dew in my cel. lar.” With that the king rings the bell and whin the ould butler made his appearance, he was tould to bring up a bottle of pottheen from below stairs, with the rest of the materials for niakin punch. Well now, as luck would have it, the punch revived him like the builder I mean, and he began to talk mighty p’litly and showed the king his plan, and whin the king saw it all beautifully pictured out on paper, his eyes began to sparkle and says, he "be jabers yer a great man intirely, and if ye only carry out the work as ye planned it, I'll make a lord of ye-and there's my hand on it." Well, lo and behould! the builder wint to work, he, and his min, and they made the completest job of it ye iver clapped yer two eyes upon, it was easy enough to git into the place, but it would puzzle the fairies to git out of it, for, first there was one passage and thin there was another running off in every direction so that ye got lost before ye could say Jack Robinson. And unless ye knew the saycret the dickens a bit ye could tell where ye were going to. The king himself got bothered the first time he wint there, and only for the builder, who kept close behind him, the sorra scran to the bit if he iver could find his way into daylight again. At last all was right and the king was mightily plased whin he learned the saycret, and was as good as his word, so the builder was made a great lord of immediantly."
"The great saycret of the whole affair was this sir, do ye see, all the rooms and passages run into each other in such a kurus manner that in case of an insurrection among his people, while the inimy would be groping about in the dark to find him, the king who could hear thim coming in at one door, could make his cscape by an other, so he called the place a labor-in, by reason of the trouble they would be in to find him. And now, sir, do ye perceave? I'm thinkin the place we've got into is a labor-in, for there's no tellin whether we're goin right or wrong, and praps while we're workin our lives out here, the inhabitants, as ye call thim, have made their escape by some other intrance.”
This singular story of Mickey's, although conveyed with all the absurdity of a legend, not only served to'amuse me, by the peculiarity of the delivery, but led me to specula‘ing upon the pos:i ility of a general communication between all the domiciles of this interesting litile animal whose territories we were then invading. The sew
hours experience we had had in our exploring expedition allowed me to come to the conclusion that such might possibly be the case, for there appeared to be a perfect labyrinth of passages to which there seemed to be no end ; and as the greater part of the day had been consumed in the work without producing the desired end, I called off from labor to refreshment, fully satisfied in my own mind at least, that I had acquired some information. Upon speaking of the exo periment to Mr. James Bonney, * I was told that others had tried to ascertain the knowledge which I had sought to gain, but with no better success, and that some had even gone so far as to find out that a general communication actually did exist. So, after all, the imaginative mind of Master Mickey had not strayed far from the truth when a vague recollection of the story of the Egyptian labyrinth, which he must have heard, led him to suppose a similar state of affairs might be the case in the present instance. Of this curious little animal Gregg says:
"The prairie dog has been recorded by some naturalists a species of the Marmot (arctomys ludoviciana;) yet it seems to possess scarce any other quality in common with this animal except that of burrowing. Some have supposed, it is true, that like the Marmot, they lie torpid during the cold season; and it is observed in “Long's Expedition," that, "as they pass the winter in a lethargic state, they lay up no provisions”' &c., but this is no doubt erroneous; for I have the concurrent testimony of several persons, who have been upon the prairies in the winter, that, like rabbits and squirrels, they issue from their abodes every soft day; and therefore lay up, no doubt, a hord of hay (as there is rarely anything else to be found in the vicinity of their towns ) for winter's use.".
"A collection of their burrows," continues this author, has been terined by travellers a "dog town,” which comprises from a dozen or so, to some thousands in the same vicinity ; often covering an area of several square miles. They generally locate upon firm, dry plains, coated with fine short grass, upon which they feed; for they are no doubt exclusively herbivorous. But even when tall grass surrounds, they seem commonly to destroy this within their “streets" which are nearly always found paved" with a fine species suited to their palates. They must need but little water, if any at all, as their towns, are often, indeed generally, found in the midst of most arid plains-unless we suppose they dig down to subterranean fountains, at least they evidently burrow remarkably deep. Attempts either to dig or drown them out of their holes have generally proved unsuccess
Kendal in his "Narrative" gives a very graphic description of the habits of these creatures.
"In their habits”, says he, “they are clannish, social, and extremely convivial, never living alone like other animals, but, on the contrary,
• James Bonney, an Englishman by birth, was a resident at the Mora, an excellent, good hearted fellow and very much esteemed by the Santa Fe traders. He was murdered by a Mexican shortly after I returned to the United States, in 1816.
always formed in large villages or large settlements. They are a wild, frolicsome, mad-cap set of fellows, when undisturbed, uneasy and ever on the move, and appear to take especial delight in chattering away their time, and visiting from hole to hole to gossip and talk over each other's affairs—at least so their actions would indicate. On several occasions,” he says, “I crept close to their villages, without being observed, to watch their movements. Directly in the centre of one of them I particularly noticed a very large dog, sitting in front of the door or entrance to his burrow, and by his own actions and those of his neighbors it really seemed as though he was the president, major, or chief—at all events he was the big dog of the place. For at least an hour I secretly watched the operations in this community. During that time the large dog I have mentioned received at least a dozen visits from his fellow dogs, which would stop and chat with him a few moments, and then run off to their domicils. All this while he never left his post for one moment, and I thought I could discover a gravity in his deportment not discernible in those by which he was surrounded. Far be it from me to say that the visits he received were upon business, or had any thing to do with the local government of the village ; but it certainly appeared so. If any animal has a system of laws regulating the body politic, it is certainly the prairie dog."
When I first saw these cities of the desert, I was for a moment or two rather disappointed in my expectations. From all which I had heard or read, I had formed an idea that they were a variety of the canine species, and looked as a matter of course to see a small dog; but what was my surprise when startled by a variety of sounds resembling the noise made by those dutch toy dogs of the shops,I looked down from my horse to ascertain what it was, that was saluting me in so novel a manner, tcheip, tcheip-tcheip sounded in every direction,—tcheip, tcheip-tcheip, was repeated by hundreds of voices, I looked to the right hand and then to the left,—tcheip, tcheip—tcheip, still saluted my bewildered ears; I turned in my saddle—tcheip, tcheip-tchein, swelled up around me—there was no end to tcheip, tcheip—tcheipit was incessant and reached me no matter how I turned about. Now, whether this was the voice of welcome or a warning to be cautious in my progress through their settlement, I could not tell, for I was entirely ignorant of the language, in which they addressed me, and could make no reply to what they were saying. At length at some distance from where I was, I saw a few small animals of a yellowish eolor, somewhat resembling the common squirrel in shape, running about from cone to cone, and either taking up a position on the top of it, or at once descending into the earth. Sometimes a venerable looking fellow would sit on his hind quarters on the roof of a large house, while others would collect round him on the ground, and with all the gravity of Indians in council, sit in silence as if listening to
the talk of a chief. On such occasions it is very rarely you ever · hear more than one speaking at a time. I have watched them for hours
and could have almost fancied them rational creatures, they behaved with so much propriety. Now and then I observed a larger house than others in the town, which might lead one to suppose that grades of society existed amongst them, and that this was the palace or white house of a king, a president or perhaps a governor; but how they are governed, or what form of government they live under, whether a monarchy or a republic, I am unable to say, not having sufficient time to stay and make myself intimately acquainted with their manners and customs. I have no doubt, however, that a great deal of curious information might be obtained by any person who had taste and opportunity to study the “domestic manners” of these freeborn citizens of the desert. They are said to be a very social peoplo, and moreover, not bigotted in their ideas of aristocratic exclusiveness, for they allow the Rattle-snake, the owl, and the Rabbit to share their dwellings in common with themselves. That these different creatures live in peace with each other, I can not for one moment suppose, and how animals so totally distinct in their natures can possibly manage to live under the same roof is to me a most unaccountable matter. The owl is a bird of prey, the Rattle-snake is voracious and venemous, and the Rabbit herbivorous and the very opposite of the others. I am unable to say upon what the Prairie Dog feeds—indeed I am puzzled to know how they exist at all, for their towns are always in high, dry latitudes, and perfectly barren, or at least they look so. There can be but little hesitation in saying that the snake preys upon some of his neighbors, as a rattle-snake was killed to-day while in the act of swallowing a young dog, and it is more than probable the owl feasts off the same dish, and it is possible the poor rabbit is also sacrificed upon the same altar. The owl and rattle-snake are smaller than those found in the southern states, and what is most remarkable is that all these animals, except the rabbit, resemble each other in general color; namely a yellow or dun, or what painters might term, a dirty tawney.
Dr. Wislizenius when going out to Santa Fe was fortunate to procure a few specimens, which were preserved by his curator for him.
IMPORTS INTO CINCINNATI, For five years, commencing September 1st, and ending August 31st, each year.
Cider, Cheese, Cheese,
Apples, gr., bbs 26992 28674 22109 6415
186 659 Beef
5561 | 79228 2094 Barley
79394 | 165528 87460 137925 Beans
11688 8757 3067 5565 Butter bbs 6345 6625 7721 3674 Butter, firk & kg; 7090 6405 7999
7487 Blooms, tons 2017
9519 2545 Bran, &c., sks 14594 1941 1 21995 49075 Candles, bxs 207 133 414 718 Corn,
896258 361315 344810 649227 Corn Meal 56775 29542 5504
3688 bbs 8261 2288 4346 453 cks 483 164 1 281 97
bxs 120301 138800 143265 165940 Cotton, bales! 12528 14476 9058 1 8551 Coffee, sks • 59337 80242 74961 67170 Cod fish, drums 292 311 516 464 Cooperage pcs 186186 179946 147352) 201711 | Eggs, bxs & bbs 561 40354504 2041 Flour, bbsi 512587 151518 447844 231859 Feathers, sks 2768 4467 4908 3432! Fish, sund, bbs 16836 19215 18146 14527 Fish. kgs & kits 2142 725 1059
1290 Fruit, dried bush 82871 27464 38317 11802 Grease, bush
585 878 1169 Glass,
bxs 18002 20281 33868 34945 Glassware, pkgs 17121 15025 19209 25712 Hemp, bdls & bles 26678! 15349 11161 12062 Hides, loose 24376 33745 23766 30280 Hides green, lbs 7513 10829 22774 14181
7019 8036 15751 14452 Herring, bxs 1603 4190 2960 3546
60902 bales 1064 645
799 Iron & Steel, pcs 188215! 1971201 187864 ! 186832 do do bols 33463 34213 29889 55168 do do tons 1685 837 1768 2019 Lead
43675 39607 4554449197
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