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approaches in his own; but who nevertheless abhors the idea of exaggerating the defects of a kindred nation for the sake of disparaging their Institutions; is willing to make for their real failings such allowances, as the peculiar circumstances of their condition seem in candour to demand ; and has endeavoured, as much as possible, to avoid the unfairness of measuring the position, in the scale of civilisation, of a new and a distant people, by an exclusively European standard.
July 27, 1837.—On board the Packet Ship Mediator.
recovered from the effects of those horrors which most landsmen have to encounter, when first launched upon the wide ocean, I sit down to indite my Journal, which, if it should serve no other purpose hereafter, will at least be the means during the voyage of whiling away many a heavy hour; and may serve also as an introduction to those notes which I intend during my sojourn in the New World, to continue if possible from day to day.
As yet, we have been the sport of the winds and waves, suffering grievously, without the satisfaction of making much progress—but the good ship has acquitted herself, as a vessel ought, which was built to be presented to the Sovereign of the greatest of maritime nations, himself a seaman, as a token of gratitude from the United States for his royal services in the capacity of Mediator, when General Jackson and Louis Philippe threatened to go to loggerheads. Why Jonathan, whilst he allowed the vessel to retain her name, degraded her from her high destiny to the rank of a common packet ship, to receive humble persons like ourselves, deponent sayeth not-nor does it much matter. She is, however, one of the most elegant and commodious of the noble class of vessels to which she belongs, and is provided for our comfort with a captain who looks a thorough seamanequal to every emergency. I find myself fortunate also in my fellow passengers, whether English or American : amongst the
former are, Mr. Draper, the solicitor general, of Upper Canada, who, as I understand, has worked his way up to that high post solely by his talents and assiduity, and is evidently a superior person. Secondly, Major Bonnycastle, of the Engineers,* whom I find to be the son of the late Professor Astronomy at Woolwich, the author of several standard works. Thirdly, his brother, a civilian, who being left a widower with one fine boy, is going to join his brothers in America, one of whom, the major, is in the Canadian service, whilst the other holds a professorship in the University founded by Jefferson, in Virginia. Both are agreeable and intellectual persons, the former having seen much of service, the latter well acquainted with modern languages and literature.
There are, likewise, two Thespians bent on trying their fortunes in the New World, the one by the name of Horncastle, a young man of a cultivated mind, and some vocal talent—the other, Mr. Williams, a comic singer, who has already made us at times forget our miseries by his fun and drollery:
Nor have I any reason to complain of the generality of the American class of passengers, amongst whom, I may mention the amiable family of the Motleys, from Boston, and a son of John Harrison Otis, the eminent Federalist, of the same city, a young man of intelligence and gentlemanlike address, but evincing the length of his absence from his native country by his Parisian air-and, above all, by the possession of a wellgrown moustache, calculated, no doubt, to do execution on the continent, but which, nevertheless, the merciless decree of fashion will, I understand, consign to destruction, so soon as he reaches the confines of New England. We have, also, on board, the celebrated Commodore Rogers, of the American navy, the wreck of a fine seaman, but now debilitated in constitution and shaken in intellect; in whom, however, the ruling passion has been evinced, almost as it were in the ribs of death, by the fact of his having undertaken, in the present state of his health and infirmities, unattended, except by a black servant, a voyage of pleasure to the Old Country, from which he is now on his return, shortly, as is manifest, to deposit his bones within his native land.+ But the most talented and in some respects the most agreeable person amongst them is Mr. Duer, of New York, the friend of Senior and Archbishop Whately, who, judging from the little intercourse I have yet had with him, seems a hard-headed and sagacious person, whose legal avocations have not prevented him from attaining an extensive acquaintance with general literature. Of ladies, there are but few on
* Now Sir R. Bonnycastle, author of “ Canada, in 1841."