網頁圖片
PDF
ePub 版

tudinarians from Washington, and other neighbouring places. They are employed for culinary purposes by the people of the village.

In the year 1804, the surface around the springs was completely inundated, and after the flood had subsided to the level of the mineral waters, their current was not greater than usual, which proves that it is not sensibly affected by the rains. During the autumnal season, this place is subject to bilious and intermitting fevers.

GREENWOOD, THE SEAT OF MRS. CRAWFORD.

OVE

Greenwood is finely situated on the south west branch of the Potomac. This stream traverses a valley covered with majestic trees, which afford a cool shade during the hottest weather. Tobacco has long been the staple production, but the increasing cheapness of this article has induced many planters to abandon its cultivation for that of wheat. The best quality of tobacco of this tract is sold at four, and the worst at two dollars per cwt. The price of the first was formerly sixteen, and the latter eight dollars. An acre of good soil yields a hogshead, which weighs about a thousand pounds; and the same surface will give from fifteen to twenty bushels of wheat, which, last year, was sold at a dollar and eighty-four cents per bushel. Slaves are numerous. It was observed to me, by the planters of this district, that tobacco is the only crop which gives them constant employment. The horse-road from Washington to Greenwood leads across the Annacostia river, or eastern branch of the Potomac, over which there is a drawbridge for the passage of vessels. On leaving this bridge, the road passes over the summit of an elevated hill, which commands a superb view of the Potomac river, with its eastern branch, and the rich scenery on either side a scene worthy of the pencil of a Claude Lorrain. What a delicious spot for a summer's residence. The axe has made great havoc among the trees, but the young shoots, if protected, would soon form a fine shade. The road to Greenwood is extremely romantic, adorned with the flowering laurel, with

[ocr errors]

honey-suckle, and foliage of the most varie gated hues. There is no direction post, and but few cabins near the road, so that a stranger, without precaution, may lose himself in the woods.

RESIDENCE OF HARRISON SMITH, ESQ.

Late Editor of the National Intelligencer.

This is a beautiful retreat. The surrounding little hills, covered with trees, are truly romantic. The road thither from Washington, leading through woods, is so tortuous and shaded, that a person unacquainted with it may readily go astray, which a lover of picturesque scenery will not regret. There is no direction post, and it is rather a bridlo than a carriage way. .

This place, containing about a hundred and sixty acres, was purchased about ten years ago at ten dollars per acre. The soil is generally sandy, though in the little vallies the sand is mixed with clay and vegetable

mould, which the rain carries down from the steep sides of the adjacent hills. . On the 4th of June, 1811, we here witnessed a most tremendous storm of rain and hail, accompanied with lightning and awful peals of thunder. Large chesnut and oaktrees near the house were broken, the fences were levelled, and all around was a scene of desolation. The weather had been for some time uncommonly dry. On the day preceding the storm, a strong wind prevailed, which carried the dust from the roads into the air in the form of dark clouds. It is worthy of remark, that at certain moments, the sound of the Little Falls, several miles distant, is distinctly heard at this place. Near Mr. Smith's house there is a dry channel of considerable depth, which contains petrified wood of different species, easily distinguished by the bark and grain.

At a small distance, in an opposite direction, there is a mineral chalybeate spring, of which the temperature in July was 62° of Fahrenheit. Near it there is a miserable hut, formed of rude boards, and just large enough to contain a bed and two old chairs. The

poor woman who inhabits it, supports herself by spinning cotton and wool, and dying those substances with the root and bark of trees. Mrs. Smith proposed to place her in a family, where her useful experience in this art would have procured her a comfortable existence. She refused the offer, observing, that independence, however humble, was far preferable. This is the proud sentiment which animates the poorest class of American citizens. The cabins of this district are far from being comfortable. They are rented from year to year with a spot of land, and consequently the tenant has no encouragement to make improvements.

In the bosom of the woods, near the habitation of Mr. Smith, there is a church, around which there is a place of interment, where lie the remains of some distinguished persons of this district.

Mr. Smith's house, built of brick, has an agreeable situation, where he found excellent water at the depth of seventy-three feet, which he proposes to conduct to the kitchen and other parts of the building by means of conduits. The expenses of this well

n

« 上一頁繼續 »