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has been brought from a distance; but, as something similar to a ditch is to be seen on one side of it, and as the neighbouring surface is uneven, there can be no strong reason to warrant the conclusion. Several fallen trees on the sides, (for it is covered with a strong growth of timber,) have exposed the component earth, which is a fine vegetable soil. It is not known that the present Indian people perform such works, nor is it believed that their traditions inculcate veneration towards these monuments; hence their origin is perfectly obscure.
On the right-hand side of the river, and about four miles below Grave Creek, a bed of coal is wrought. It lies in a horizontal position, and under highwater mark. Boats take in lading close by the mouth of the mine.
Lodged at a tavern thirty-four miles from Wheeling, after rowing against head-winds, which rendered the work somewhat fatiguing. In the evening a number of young men came in from a husking of Indian corn in the neighbourhood; they commenced drinking and swearing, all bawling out and talking at once. Such noisy gabbling I never before heard.
November 6. To-day I got into a long stretch of the river, where it is straight for seventeen miles. This part is called the Long Reach. The wind blew upward, and opposed a rolling surface to my progress. The labour was hard, but the headway very small; family boats have been obliged to land. I saw some young men in a canoe who had just killed a deer in the act of crossing the river.
Lodged at a tavern about half way down the Long Reach. Two old women, (sisters,) were there, one was in quest of her husband, and the other of her daughter. The uncle is forty-five years of age, and the niece sixteen. Affinity and disparity of
age united, have not been sufficient to prevent the elopement.)
From Wheeling to near this place, coal, limestone, and sandstone are abundant.
In my passage, I have seen twenty-five islands. Some of them are of considerable size; the second below Pittsburg is six miles long. Islands being covered with timber, varying in size from the shortest willows by the water's edge, to tall trees in the centre, have a beautiful appearance when viewed from the river either above or below them. I have descended twenty-two ripples. In a few of these, the stranger is apt to feel a considerable anxiety from being swept hastily along amongst logs, with their tops above water, and over stones and logs sunk beneath its surface.
November 7. The inconvenience and expense that attend putting my baggage ashore every night, and on board every morning, are great. Tavern-keepers' servants are usually of their own families. Freemen in early life, they, in many cases, disregard the parental command, however reasonable. If I mistake not, the assistance which I paid dearly for, was sometimes procured by my own address rather than a sense of duty on their part. Although I am now a good waterman, and outsail every vessel I see, I resolved to adopt a more convenient, though less expeditious way of travelling.
I applied to the master of a large keel boat, on its way for Portsmouth, at the mouth of Great Sciota river, to be taken on board. He refused to take me as a passenger, but was willing to accept of me on condition that I would row in the place of a man who was about to leave him. I agreed to work; for in my skiff I wrought very hard. I changed my place, but did not improve my condition.
Keel boats are large shallow vessels, varying v from thirty to seventy tons burden. They are built on a keel with ribs, and covered with plank, as ships are. They are very flat below, and draw only about two feet of water. The gunwales are about a foot above water. Something like a large box is raised over the boat, which serves for a cover, leaving a narrow footpath on the outside all round. Four or six men row near the prow, and a steersman behind plies a long oar, which serves for a rudder.
November 8. (Sunday.) The provisions of this and another boat in company were nearly exhausted, and a supply was expected at Marietta. Sailing appeared to be a work of necessity; but, independent of the exigency, the boats would probably have moved on. Sailing on the Sabbath is as common here as at sea. A boatman commenced a song, and was interrupted by a Scots rustic. The American alleged that he was in a "land of liberty" and that no one had a right to interfere. The other affirmed that it was against law, and threatened to prevent the violation in the most summary way. The boatman, perceiving that he was to be assailed by a stronger man than himself, gave up the contest. Every one present seemed well pleased with this termination of the affair.
November 9. Marietta is beautifully situated on a fine green bottom, immediately above the mouth of the Great Muskingum river. There are many good brick and frame houses in the town; a church, and an academy, which are both called fine buildings. The ferry-boat that crosses the Muskingum is attached by wheels to a strong rope stretched across the river, to which the boat is moored obliquely, so that it is forced across by the
action of the stream. Marietta is subject to inundations. I observed high water mark on the plaster of a room in the tavern, about four and half feet above the floor.
The first settlement formed by the United States in the territory north-west of the Ohio, was effected by General Putnam, and forty-six other persons, on the 7th of April, 1788, on the ground where Marietta now stands.
10. This day we met a family boat sailing up the river. We convinced them of their mistake, which happened in the following way. The people went under the roof to avoid a shower, and during their stay, the vessel turned round. They came out, and rowed till they had retrograded about two miles.
Our way of passing the night was simple. We put ashore, and tied the boat to a log or stake; took in fire-wood, which is plentiful all along the banks; made a fire for cooking, in a large box filled with earth, placed on the roof, and slept under the cover in our clothes, wrapped in a blanket. In the morning we lost no time in dressing, having only to loosen our cable, and get under weigh. In times of high water, sailing by night is considered safe and agreeable, very little rowing being necessary.
On the 11th we went down Letart's rapids, a very violent run. The boat rushed through with great velocity. There is a floating grist and saw mill here, which I visited. The whole is buoyant on a large flat shallow vessel, moored in the current. The effective head of water is about twenty inches high. The water-wheel is twelve feet in diameter, and eighteen feet broad. The millstone is about thirty-eight inches in diameter, and
makes a hundred and twenty revolutions in the minute.
We came up with a family boat, the people in which had killed a deer. These animals often cross the river of their own accord; and frequently to elude the pursuit of dogs.
The days are warm, reminding me of the month of August in Scotland; the mornings and evenings
The ranges of hills that bound the view on both sides of the river are composed of hori zontal strata of the coal field formation; a bed of this mineral lies at the height of fifty or sixty feet above the level of the water. A large mass of sandstone is above the coal. This may be observed for many miles along the banks. The ragged, and dented edges of the strata, have led some to suppose that the river never acted on them; but the very contrary must have been the case; for had the cliffs now to be seen been exposed to the weather ever since the commencement of the present order, their asperities, and sharp edges had been rounded off, and smoothed, as in the case of rocks, on hill tops. The true explanation seems to be, that the river has undermined the rocks, brought them down, and ground them to sand, by its powerful attrition. The undermining process has no doubt been facilitated by the softer subjacent strata, as clay-schist, and coal. The powerful operation of the grinding process is strongly attested by the grooved surfaces, and the figure of the large blocks in the bed of the stream. These are uniformly rounded away on the end that lies farthest up the river; whereas, the end facing down the river is comparatively flat, and usually bounded by sharp edges.