Page images
PDF
EPUB
[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

WITB
INCIDENTS OF TWO SEA VOYAGES VIA. SANDWICH

ISLANDS AROUND CAPE HORN;

CONTAINING, ALSO, A

BRIEF HISTORY OF THE MISSIONS AND SETTLEMENT OF THE COUNTRY-ORI.
GIN OF THE PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT-NUMBEL AND OUSTOMS OF
THE INDIANS-INCIDENTS WITNESSED WMLE TRÁVERSING
AND RESIDING IN THE TERRITORY_DESCRIPTION OF

THE 'SOIL, PRODUCTION AND CLIMATË,

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

i

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1848, by ELIJAR White, in the office of the Clerk of the District Court of the Northern District of New York.

THE
NEW YORK
PUBLIC LIBRARY
Astor, Lenox and Tridsa

Foundations.

Checked May 1913

INTRODUCTION.

Some admirers of solid reading say, with regretful sighs, and doleful faces, that the day of stable, instructing literature is superseded by that of trashy novels, romances, etc., tending to corrupt the mind and principles. Formerly, the tables of even the fashionable were strown with volumes designed not only to amuse, but to elevate, edify, and contribute to the truly intellectual enjoyment of their readers instead of those fostering vitiated tastes and sullying youthful minds, with which they insist our shelves are now cumbered. They mourn over the degeneracy in this of our otherwise "age of improvement,” and not rightly judging the true cause, almost wish, from the evils which have arisen from this, that the noble art of printing had remained undiscovered.

But, dear friends, do not shake your head in such grave disapproval of the above apparently ironical paragraph. In

There does seem to have been a sad falling off from the pure healthful taste of former days, when a volume of true poetry, or a treatise on a sensible subject could be read with real zest and enjoyment. It is too true, that many works are now forced upon us detailing scenes too highly wrought, exciting and dissipating to the mind, and presenting pictures tending to nourish a depraved moral hunger. In their places we should have productions divested of frivolous imaginings, wild speculations, and false sentimentalism ; and I can not believe that our tastes are so vitiated that such we could not appreciate and duly value: There are real scenes of sorrow and pleasure even in this

agree with you.

part, I do

a pure

common-place, plodding world of ours, which, if properly pictured, would absorb and interest without turning the mind into an enervating or immoral channel. However, I do not carry condemnation of fiction to the extreme that I would banish it altogether. Certain European novelists may write sentiment. Arthur--who would condemn his truthful, home-like tales to the shade! Our noble Mrs. Stevers, enchanting us of a summer evening with her rich, instructing stories of olden times. Miss Sedgwick, Miss Orne, Miss Pickering, Miss Gove, and last of the many in our mental view, sweet, gentle, piquant, Fanny Forester, touchingly pleading our forbearance “ with a smile on her cheek and a tear in her een.”

Well, lady novel reader, I fancy I see a smile again. I feared I had gained your displeasure; for, till the last sentence or two, I imagined a look of dudgeon stole over you face. I will endeavor to cater for the taste of all, as far as consistency will allow me. To the first class of readers I will just say, that within these lids they will find nought contained but truth; to the second, that, although all true, some of the incidents are sufficiently thrilling to please, I trust, even after perusing the effusions of James, Cooper, or Lippard, that prince of thrilling story tellers, and with this they must rest content. The narrative, such as it is, is extracted, and compiled from various notes and other information obtained from Mrs. White, and Dr. White's Government Reports, and sundry documents kindly favored me, carrying them through a variety of scenes; interesting and extensive travels by land and water, and a residence of many years in the wilds of Oregon.

« PreviousContinue »