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RICA. $ 1. Of the Progress of the Discovery of North America. ing the province of Guaxaca; and, after touching suc
cessively at a small island, which they named the isle pogress of Abstracting our attention now to the progress of of Sacrifices, from first beholding the horrible sacrifice
discovery with regard to that important division of this of human beings here; Juan de Ulua, near Vera Cruz; e come continent called North America, we may observe, and Panuco, in N. lat. 23°; and leaving fertile pro
that within two years after the first discovery of America vinces stretching northward whose boundaries they
France. He returned home the following spring.
after this, Francis La Roche, then. kiards, had subjugated Porto Rico to the crown of Spain, lord of Roberval, was sent out by the French king, with
sailed from that island northerly, and discovered the Cartier in his suite, as viceroy of these newly-discovered continent in 30°, 8' N. lat. Arriving at a period of the regions. He planted a colony, with Cartier at its head, year when the surrounding country was covered with which was shortly afterwards broken up; and nothing verdure, he called it Florida ; but being resisted in his of consequence appears to have been accomplished by attemps to effect a landing, he returned to Porto Rico, the French in these parts, until the year 1608, when after exploring the neighbouring channel, now called Champlain, a merchant of Dieppe, and his followers, the gulf of Florida.
established themselves between the rivers St. Lawrence In 1517 Hernandez Cordova, an opulent planter of and St. Charles, founded the city of Quebec, and gave Cuba, sailed for the continent from that island, standing the name of their governor to lake Champlain. directly west; and coasting round the eastern point of That portion of North America known by the name Yucatan (hitherto thought to be part of a large island)of Carolina, and part of the extensive line of coast reached the bay of Campeachy. Here he met with a first denominated Florida by Ponce de Leon, seems severe repulse from the inhabitants, in attempting to to have been called by the former name, in holand near Potonchan; and after satisfying himself of nour of Charles IX. king of France, who sent out the fertility of the country, and bringing away some a fleet, under the command of John Ribalt, in the year gold ornaments of the natives, returned to Cuba for 1562. He arrived at cape Francis, on the coast of: succours. The longest and most successful voyage Florida, near which, on the 1st of May, he entered a . that the Spaniards had hitherto undertaken in this di- river, which he called May river. This is supposed to rection was now determined on. De Grijalva, a young be that which is now called St. Mary's, and forms, but brave soldier, under Diego Velasquez, the original the southern boundary of the United States. Ribalt conqueror of the island, headed two hundred and forty discovered many other rivers northward ; amongst volunteers from Cuba, many of whom were persons of them was one which he called Port Royal. He built considerable fortune, and the expedition, pursuing the a fort in this neighbourhood, and planted a small same course as the former, made the island of Cozumel, colony, which he left, under the government of a Capto the east of Yucatan, in April, 1518. Without any tain Albert. particular occurrence they reached Potonchan, on the About two years after the death of Albert, who was western side of the peninsula, and, with the assistance slain in a mutiny among the colonists, the Freneh sent of their field-pieces, obtained a difficult victory over the out another expedition to Florida, under the command natives : admiring the country, but not strong enough of Rene Laudonier. In June, 1564, he built a fort on to possess themselves of it, they now coasted onward to May river, which he called Carolina. During several the west, and, discovering numerous villages, in which years after this, the various forts erected in this part of they could distinguish houses of stone, with other ap- the continent were contested by the Spaniards and the pearances of superior cultivation, unanimously named French, and were, at last, for the most part destroyed. this district New Spain. They were amicably received In 1576, the British government sent out Captain
Forbisher to find out a north-west passage to the East have been founded about the year 1634; and Rhode
the straits which bear his name. Sir Humphrey Gil- settled about 1664; and Carolina about five years British
bert, in the year 1583, explored Conception bay, on afterwards. discoveries the east side of Newfoundland; St. John's harbour William Penn, the celebrated quaker, had a royal continued.
and the adjacent continent; and in the following year, charter of extensive lands granted to him in the year
from Greenwich, or 37° W. from Philadelphia. But Settle The first town that was settled by the English in the Hudson's-bay company, acting upon a contracted
North America was called James town, near the policy, did not render all those services to the sub-
lake discharges its waters, since called M.Kenzie's
24' N and lon. 128", 2' W. from Greenwich, or 520, The rigour which was exercised against the Roman 54' W. from Philadelphia. Catholics in this country, in the reign of Charles I., By the discoveries above alluded to, and those ocbanished to the New World Lord Baltimore, and á casionally made during the rapid settlement of the great many other persecuted individuals. His lord-country and the progress of enterprize, the princiship had obtained a grant of a tract of land upon the pal divisions of this northern continent have been Chesapeak bay, about one hundred and forty miles explored and become known. The line separating these Parts ! long and one hundred and thirty broad; but dying from the parts which remain unexplored and unknown, uk309 before the patent could be sent after him, his son, may be considered as commencing at the Pacific Cecil Calvert, first acted under the grant, and spent ocean, in latitude about 38° N. and running along the a large fortune in establishing the colony in 1632. It high lands and mountains, between the waters which was called Maryland, in honour of Queen Henrietta fall into the gulfs of California and Mexico and those Maria.
which fall into the Missouri river; continuing in that The English settlement of Connecticut appears to direction to the Mississippi; and thence up that river
NAME: to the source of its highest north-western branch. It now rest the attention of the most rapid traveller. The N, AMERICA. proceeds along the high tract of country which divides widely-extended lakes and other waters of the North
the waters of the Missouri from those which fall into American continent exhibit, perhaps, the principal Hudson's bay and the North sea, and across the Rocky features of its geography, as the mountains of the Concerning mountains to the Pacific ocean, in lat. about 52° N. Southern division may be said to constitute the sublime To the S. of this general division line, the known peculiarity of that magnificent region. We commence countries are all Old and New Mexico, and a portion of with its principal Louisiana; to the S. E. West and East Florida; to the GULFs, BAYS, AND STRAITS.-The Gulf of Mexico Gulf of E. the United States; to the N. E. Canada, the La- is the largest and most celebrated of the inland seas brador country, part of New South Wales, and of other of America. It is situated in an excellent climate, districts round Hudson's bay; and to the north part and presents at its entrance the Archipelago of North of New South Wales, the Athabosca, and other coun American islands denominated the West Indies. A retries, containing the establishments of the Hudson's- markable current, called the gulf-stream, here sets in bay and North-west companies, and those explored by towards the N. E., and passes on to the banks of Hearne and M-Kenzie. The unknown and unexplored Newfoundland, at the rate of three miles an hour. It countries (except so far as the surveys made by navi- is of a circular form, commencing on the African coast; gators of the coast of the Pacific ocean, and the im- thence running across the Atlantic, and behind the perfect accounts of the travellers who have ascended islands of South America and Cuba, into the gulf of the Missouri have furnished information) comprehend Mexico; from which it finds a passage toward the the tract enclosed by this line, containing, in breadth, cape of Florida and the Bahama islands, and runs northabout 1,000 miles, and in length about 1,800 miles in a easterly along the American coast to Newfoundland, direct line; and, by the way of the Missouri and Colum- thence to the European coast; and along the coast bia rivers, nearly twice that distance.
southerly till it meets the trade-winds. It is about In the year 1804, the American government sent out seventy-five miles from the shores of the southern suis end a corps of discovery under the command of Captains states of America. Its breadth is from forty to fifty miles,
Lewis and Clarke, of the army of the United States. widening towards the N.; but rendered narrower by a They passed from the mouth of the Missouri, through north-east wind, and broader by the north-west and the interior parts of North America to the Pacific ocean, west winds. This is, perhaps, one of the most remark, and have materially illustrated the geography of that able currents in the ocean; and we shall, therefore, river. Major Pike, in 1805, successfully explored the take this opportunity of describing it more at length. course of the Mississippi, and in a second expedition, The vessels sailing from Europe to the West Indies Gulf penetrated the interior of Louisiana, surveying the are accelerated by equinoctial currents before they stræam. whole of those majestic waters which rise in the rocky arrive at the torrid zone. In a more northern pasmountains of that district, and run westward into the sage, under 28o and 350 lat. between the parallels of Missouri and Mississippi. The recent and splendid Teneriffe and Ceuta, in 46° and 48° W. lon. no regucontributions of M. Humboldt to our scientific informa- lar stream is observable. Here a zone of about 140 tion respecting the equinoctial regions can hardly be leagues in breadth begins to separate the equinoctial ranked with the expeditions of discovery above men current, which tends to the W. from that which runs tioned; but we shall not fail to avail ourselves of them towards the E., and is remarkable for its high temin the progress of this article.
perature. Humboldt says, “ I there observed (gulf of From this succinct view of the progress of our ac- Plorida), in the month of May, 1804, in the 26th and quaintance with North America, we may now proceed 27th degrees of N. lat. a celerity of eighty miles in to the minuter details.--the geography and topography twenty-four hours, or five feet every'second; though of this continent. For the character and varieties of at this period the north wind blew with great violence.” the aboriginal inhabitants of America, see the article The current, at the termination of the gulf of FloINDIANS.
rida, runs to the N. E.; and its rapidity is sometimes
five miles an hour. On the approach of a ship to § II. Geographical details of North America generally. New York, Charlestown, or Philadelphia, it may be EXTENT AND
APPEARANCE.—North known when it enters the gulf-stream by the elevated Berita. America comprehends all that part of the western temperature of the waters, their strong saltness, deep
continent which lies N. of the isthmus of Darien, in blue colour, the shoals of sea-weed, and the heat of the about the ninth degree of N. latitude; and extends surrounding atmosphere. Towards the N. this rato the Polar regions, where its boundaries are unknown. pidity increases, and the heat of the waters diminish, Its eastern extremity on the coast of Labrador is in though the breadth of the current widens. Off 55°, and its western (cape Prince of Wales, Behring's Charlestown, and in its parallel opposite cape Henstraits), in 165° W. lon, from Greenwich.
lopen, the current is forty or fifty leagues broad. Where There is, as we have intimated, a considerable dif- the stream is the narrowest, it runs from three to five ference between the New World and the Old, in all miles an hour, and at about the rate of one mile an hour their general features. The former is distinguished for as it proceeds towards the N. its vastness and grandeur; its rivers, in their extensive In the parallel of New York and Oporto, the temcourses and innumerable windings; its mountains, in perature of this gulf-stream, or current, is equal to that their sublime elevation, and overawing boldness and of the seas in the 18th degree of latitude between the majesty ; its forests, in their extraordinary variety and tropics. magnitude ;-in short, all the chief productions of this To the E. of Boston, and on the meridian of Hali continent possess a certain characteristic superiority to fax, under 41° N. lat. and 67° W. løn.; this current most other parts of the globe, that cannot fail to ar- is nearly eighty leagues broad. It bends from this
N. AME- point to the E., and its western limit skirts the ex- in Penobscot haven, in Lincoln county, Maine, and x sve RICA. tremity of the great bank of Newfoundland.
cape Sable, the S. W. point of Nova Scotia, stretch- RCA The gulf-stream runs towards the E. and E. S. E. ing about 200 miles in a north-eastern direction, Geographi- from the 52d degree of W. lon. to the Azores; and at and with Verte Bay, which proceeds inland from the Germania 1,000 leagues distance, in the straits of Florida, between straits of Northumberland, in a south-western direc
calde the isle of Cuba and the shoals of the Tortoise island, tion, forming a narrow isthmus, which unites Nova the strong impulse originally received is still felt. This Scotia to the continent. distance is double the length of the course of the river Bristol Bay lies northward of the peninsula of Alasof the Amazons.
cha, by which it is formed, and is terminated by cape
scribed. The main entrance into this gulf from the may allude to others, which have received the distinc-
tor, separate Asia from America, and are situated in St. Ja The Gulf of Florida is the channel situated between E. lon. 168°, 15'. N. lat. 65°, 46'. From the south of Dans the peninsula of Florida and the Bahama islands, N. these straits to the crescent of isles between Asia and strai of the island of Cuba. The gulf-stream already men- America, the sea is remarkably shallow, but deepens tioned finds a passage through it, and runs along the from them till soundings are lost in the Pacific ocean, American coast to the N. E.
to the south of the isles. It has been supposed, On the opposite, or western coast of this continent from the volcanic indications, that the entire space is found the Gulf of California, which washes the eastern from the islands to the straits, was, at some remote shore of the country of California. It is, in reality, an period, dry, and that the fury of the water, instigated arm of the Pacific ocean, intercepted between cape by fire, overwhelmed the whole tract, leaving the islands Corrientes on the one side, and cape St. Lucar on the as monuments of its desolating force. The Japanese other: that is to say, between Mexico or New Spain maps place some islands within these straits, bearing on the N. E. and California on the W. It is in the the appellation of Ya Zuc, or the kingdom of the whole nearly 300 leagues in length, with a various Dwarfs; whence it is inferred, that the Japanese width of from 0 to 30 or 40 leagues.
were acquainted with the western continent.
1,000 miles in length from N. to S., exceeding the Baltic the S. side, and the opposite shores of the Quadras
may be considered as forming one large inland sea, *** Bafin's Bay, as far as it is known, appears to be the dividing the United States from Canada, which has been most northern gulf or bay of America, and is situate termed, with some propriety, the sea of Canada. Acbetween 70° and 80° N. lat. opening into the Atlantic cording to the French charts, that part of this extenocean through Davis's strait. It abounds with whales, sive collection of waters which is called Lake Superior is and communicates, on the south-western side of that not less than 1,500 miles in circumference. The coast strait, with
with Hudson's bay, through a cluster of is remarkably rocky and broken; the water is transislands.
parent, and the bed of the lake very stony. SeveThe Bay of Honduras is of considerable extent, de- ral islands are scattered up and down this lake; riving its appellation from the province of that name. one of them, called Minong, is about 60 miles to Its situation is between the cape Honduras and that length. The savages are superstitious enough to beof Coteche, at the eastern extremity of the province of lieve that these islands are the residence of what they Yucatan. It is chiefly notorious for the establishment call the Great Spirit. It is supposed that thirty rivers formed on its shores by the English, for cutting dyeing at least fall into this lake, some of them of considerable wood, and has been a frequent subject of litigation size. The principal fish are sturgeons and trout; the between the courts of London and Spain.
latter sometimes weighing from thirty to fifty pounds, The Bay of Campeachy is at the southern extremity and may be caught at all seasons of the year.
Lake of the Gulph of Mexico, and w. of Yucatan. It is Superior opens into noted for the woods yielded by the neighbourhood. Lake Huron, by the straits of St. Mary, which are
Fundy Bay is another extensive bay of the North 40 miles in length, and in some places only about American continent, which opens between the islands one or two miles in breadth. The circumference of this
AME- lake is reckoned at about 1,000 miles; and on the of the United States from the S. W. to the N. E. N. AMESACA. northern side are the islands of Manatulan.
They commence on the north of Georgia, where they RICA. Lake Michigan, the third of this chain, is navigable give rise to many rivers running southward to the gulf vraphi- for ships of any burthen; it communicates with lake of Mexico. Many tracts of fine arable and grazing Geographi
cal details. getuils . Huron by a channel six miles broad, and is 900 miles land intervene between the ridges of these mountains,
in circumference, exclusive of the Puans, or Green bay, known by the epithets of the Iron mountains, the which runs inland for about eighty miles. According
According White Oak mountains, the Laurel ridge, the Black to Mr. Morse's account, these lakes never freeze over, ridge, the North ridge, and others. The Cumberthough the entrances are frequently obstructed with ice. land mountains form the exterior skirt on the north
Lakes Erie and Ontario, which are connected by the western side; whence the Apalachian chain runs rio.
fall of Niagara, and are both of considerable magni- on through the province of Virginia, and proceeds
of ridges, runs between the Atlantic, the Mississipi, Lake Champlain forms part of the dividing line be- and the lakes; extending, nearly parallel with the sea tween the states of New York and Vermont. Its coast, for about 900 miles. The Shining Mountains, Shining length is about 200 miles, its breadth from one to so called from the number of large crystals sparkling mountains. eighteen, and it occupies about 500,000 acres. This on their surface, are a part of this vast range, beginning lake presents a number of islands on its surface, the at Mexico, and continuing northward on the E. of Calimost considerable of which are North and South Hero, fornia, separate the waters of those rivers which fall and Motti island. Half the rivers and streams which into the gulf of Mexico, or the gulf of California ; rise in the state of Vermont are said to fall into it. thence they are continued to about 47 or 48 degrees of Several reach it from New York state, and some from N. latitude. To these are joined the Rocky or Stony Rocky Canada, whither it sends its own waters in a northerly Mountains, which extend as far as N. lat. 55°; after mountains. course into the St. Lawrence.
which their elevation becomes very inconsiderable. The Lake of Winipic, or Winnipeg, may be considered RIVERS.- This fine continent abounds with the most The St. as an inland sea, although it is considerably inferior to noble rivers, spread over vast extents of territory, and Lawrence. the Slave lake, or sea, from which Mackenzie's river adminstering no less to its political than to its geograpursues its course to the Arctic ocean. The geography phical importance. Amongst these the St. Lawrence of the Slace Sea, or lake, is very defective; but, accord- has formerly been supposed to hold the highest rank; ing to Arrowsmith's map, it may be estimated at about and is now, in point of breadth, the most magnificent 200 miles long and 100 broad.
collection of fresh water on the whole globe; but the To the Athapescow Lake, or Lake of the hills, the Mississippi and the Missouri far exceed it in length. same remark may be applied; it is generally laid down This river can only be regarded as issuing from lake between the lat. of 570 and 58°, or about 30 S. E. of Ontario, though it communicates successively with all the Slave lake.
the great lakes; and, after a course of nearly 750 miles, Capes.- The following are the principal capes of finally empties itself into the ocean. At its origin it North America, reckoning downwards, from the N. W. runs through a long and somewhat narrow valley, diThe Alaschian cape, in 55° N. lat.; cape Mendocino, versified with numerous tributary streams; and, unlike cape St. Lucas, cape Corrientes, cape Verde, cape some others of the great rivers of America, its bed is Blasco, on the western side; and on the eastern, cape continually improving. From lake Ontario to Montreal Charles, cape Cod, cape Hatteras, cape Henlopen. it is often called the Iroquois; and, taking a N. E. The latter, situated on the S. W. side of the bay of course, encircles the island of Montreal; just above Delaware, has a light-house, erected a few miles below which it receives the Utawas, or Grand river, from the the town of Lewis, of an octagon form, 115 feet in W., and forms numerous fertile islands. From Monheight, with a foundation nearly as much above the treal, it assumes the name of St. Lawrence, and, conlevel of the sea. The lantern is seven or eight feet tinuing the same course, passes by Quebec, and square, lighted with eight lamps, and seen at the meets the tide upwards of 400 miles from the sea, distance of ten leagues off the coast.
and is so far navigable for large vessels. In many ins. , MOUNTAINS.—The mountains in North America are parts it is the support of numerous steam-boats, which
by no means so lofty as those of the southern division, are used as much for freight as for passengers. The although they exceed those of Europe and the Old breadth of this noble river is its grand characteristic; World, the Alps alone excepted. Yet nature here being not less than 90 miles wide at its mouth, and assumes almost every variety of aspect with which she about five miles wide at Quebec. Even as far as Monadorns the face of the earth. The gently-undulating treal, it is from two to four miles in breadth; and, vale, the widely-extended plain, and the bold and although impeded by some rapids, affords a navigarocky eminence, give a richness and variety to the tion of 743 miles, calculating from its mouth to the lake
American continent of the most inviting nature. The Ontario. ny. Alleghany, or, as they are sometimes called, naming the The stream generally known by the name of the Mississippi.
whole from a part, the Apalachian Mountains, the most Mississippi, in point of beauty and magnificence, may celebrated in North America, pass through the territory be considered the next in order. Its source is about