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By a similar defect in the laws, a contract'made in public libraries in each of these cities, novels of the vilest N. AMEone state, is not compellable to performance in another; sort are in great repute; plays and farces are sought RICA, but an exception to this is made, as it should seem, for also with avidity; moral essays and history are but little
Political Political the direct purpose of protecting the system of slavery perused; and the classics, metaphysics, political phi
and Moral Bit Moral from infringement: for, by the federal, or high law of losophy, &c. continue, generally speaking, in dusty re
State. the land, any person held to labour or service in one pose upon the shelf. The majority of authors may Catted state, and escaping from it, shall be delivered up on be but too well denoted by this designation of their United
States. the simple claim of the party to whom he or she has readers; and, beyond novel and farce writers, and been bound. By this law, it also follows that if the newspaper politicians, America reckons few men who slave escapes into a state which has itself prohibited have signalized themselves in letters. slavery altogether, yet he shall not be protected from Institutions taking the name of colleges are very Colleges. the claim of a master residing in a state where slavery numerous : there are about fifty in the whole scattered is still tolerated.
throughout the territory of the United States. These Congress has power to admit any new state into the establishments, however, have the name, with but few Union, but not a new state formed within any otlier of the privileges or advantages of those so denomistate; nor any state formed by an union of any two states nated in Europe. They have neither fellowships, schowithout the consent of the legislatures of such states. larships, nor exhibitions; and the teachers, sometimes Congress guarantees to every state the preservation of dignified by the title of professors, are allowed stipends a republican form of government, and a protection of too scanty, and allotted work too laborious, to execute, each of them against invasion or insurrection. Upon or even to carry forward any grand or original literary the vote of two-thirds of both houses, congress pos- undertakings. Havard college, in Massachusetts, is the sesses a power of amending the constitution, or upon most celebrated, and has thirteen professorships. Yale application of two-thirds of the legislatures of the states college, in Connecticut, and Princetown college, in generally. These amendments must be ratified by New Jersey, are spoken of as the next in eminence. three-fourths of the several states, or by the same It is remarkable in these, and other of the American number assembled in one convention; and to this colleges, that the Greek and Latin is generally recited power are annexed some provisional guarantees for se- in the Scotch dialect, although the students profess to curing the suffrage and individual privileges of each state. speak English with the modern English accent, a pro
An oath or affirmation is taken of each member of ceeding which may be accounted for by the influx of the congress, but no religious test is imposed on any Scotch professors into their universities, Princetown occasion, or for any office throughout the republic. has 200, Yale 300, and Havard 400 students. Stu
The right of speedy trial is awarded to every of- dents at these colleges generally finish their education fender; and that trial is to be by jury, and in public at eighteen years, an age when our English university court. Excessive bail is not to be required, nor ex matriculations most commonly begin. It is here worthy cessive fines, or cruel and unusual punishments inflicted. of remark, that Washington bequeathed stock equal to In the eye of the law, all parties are equal; all must $25,000 towards establishing a university in the federal bear arms, or pay an equivalent, at the call of the Union; city of the Union, a bequest
which, with its compound and hereditary titles are prohibited.
interest, is still unappropriated. Such is a brief outline of the fundamental laws of Although the institutions for completing the educa- Education. the land in the United States. Of the particular laws tion of a classical scholar are poorly appointed, those of each state it would be tedious, and almost endless to of a more universal, but minor nature, where the rudigive a detail.
ments of education are taught to all the inhabitants, LITERATURE.—It seems to be generally admitted, are both numerous and well conducted. Almost every that literature is in no very flourishing condition in the state has schools established for this purpose, and United States; but it is asserted that the stream of scarcely a native American is to be found who cannot knowledge compensates in its width for the shallowness read, write, and keep accounts. Commercial intelligence of its depth, and that the learning, like the riches of the and the political news of the day are, by this means, country, though differently diffused, and not to be diffused over the country in numberless newspapers, found in accumulated masses, is not less, upon the of which, and of political reviews, a larger number are whole, than that which is found in other empires. The printed in the United States than in the British fallacy of this reasoning in a metaphor, is obvious. It empire. Nor should we omit to mention that, in the may, indeed, be true, abstractedly, that more indivi- sale of all the public lands, a sixteenth section of every duals of the multitude possess in America a little learn- township is reserved for the support of schools, and the ing and a glimpse of science; but the inferior degree of maintenance of the poor. it alluded to, if multiplied by millions, will but poorly In medical science, it is affirmed that considerable compensate for the depth of a Bacon or a Newton; and progress has been made in the United States, and present a state of general intellect to the philosophical many professors and lecturers of eminence are reckoned observer, from which he will augur many evils. On the at Boston, Philadelphia, New York, and Baltimore. other hand, the infancy of her empire, the constant im Of the fine arts, sculpture has, as yet, not shown its portation of English books into the Union, and the more head in the United States. Painting is chiefly in miprofitable occupations of the great majority of her niatures, portraits, and landscapes, but the works of citizens, may well account for these facts, without any West, Alston, Stuart, Copley, Trumbull
, Leslie, are, imputation on the capabilities of her people.
perhaps, destined to create a better taste; many of The literature of the United States is chiefly concen- their pictures at present adorn the public academies trated in New York, Philadelphia, and Boston. Of the at New York and Philadelphia.
N. AME Architecture boasts some very handsome specimens theatres, stores, &c." The opposers of this bill were N. AMI RICA.
in the public buildings of Washington, New York, violent in their invectives against the party from whom RICA
Philadelphia, and Boston. The city hall of New York it originated; and the orator who principally exerted Political and Moral
is a superb edifice of white marble, constructed with a himself on the occasion, said, in the debate, " that such Pulitic State,
mixture of the lonic and Corinthian orders. Its portico persecuting intolerance right well suit the New England and Ma
is supported by eight columns, fifteen feet in length, each puritans, who were descended from the bigotted fanatics United hewn from a single block; the second story has nine of Old England, those who were great readers of the l'aire States.
teen windows, marking the number of individual states Bible, and, consequently, ignorant, prejudiced, cold. Stara at the period of its erection.
blooded, false, and cruel; but such a measure could Morals and MORALS AND MANNERS.--The great proportion of never be fastened on the more enlightened, liberal, and wanners.
the population in the United States being of English philosophic inhabitants of Louisiana, the descendants of
and is affected much further
inaterials for their future occupation, On these ocThe number of negro slaves disgracing this land of casions it sometimes happens that they are benighted liberty is reckoned at 1,700,000, by far the largest in a neighbourhood where it is impossible to procure part of whom are in the southern states. Brutalized the accommodation of an inn; the traveller is then for successive generations, this wretched race seems obliged to "camp out," as it is termed ; that is, to lie incapable of suddenly enjoying the advantages of under a tree in the open air. This is described as by liberty; the free blacks, of whom there are counted no means unpleasant, and by some it is even preferred 200,000, being said to be the most profligate and im to the generality of American inns, which abound in moral of any persons in the country. A gang of these vermin, and where the traveller must consider himself robbers sometime since set fire to whole rows of houses fortunate if he can procure a bed to himself. The in New York, that they might profit by the consequent process of camping-out consists of first lighting a confusion. In the winter of 1816-17, a negro was pub fire. With this view, a tinder-bax, &c, is a neces licly executed for this crime. African schools have sary part of the apparatus of travelling. A blauket been of late instituted by the quakers, to ameliorate or mattress is then spread (if the traveller's equi and instruct these ignorant and half-savage tribes : page permits the carriage of one) on the windward some African churches are said to have arisen in con. Bide of the fire, so that the smoke may i low over him, sequence, and some black teachers and preachers, who and keep away the musquitoes and other insects from perform their functions with ability and propriety. molesting hiin. Thus prepared, he ties his horse to a
Where the barbarous practice of slavery prevails, its tree with a thong of sutficient length to permit the baneful influence is felt not only by those who suffer, animal to graze; then lying down on his bodding but by those who practise it; and hence a very striking with his feet to the fire, sleeps undisturbed until difference is found in the manners and morals of the morning. New England states and those of the more southern The constant and universal habit of smoking is very parts of the Union. The following circumstance fur- annoying to the English traveller in America. From nishęs a remarkable illustration of this fact, and of the president of the United States, down to the lowest some of the feelings of American legislators toward citizen that can afford a segar, all the Americana smoke, religion :- In the state of Louisiana à bill was intro and many chew tobacco. This is practised, too, even huced to secure the better observance of the sabbath: on the bench of justice and in the chair of state, in to punish unnatural crimes; to prevent the defacing of the senate-house, and in the drawing-room. the church-yards; to oblige the shutting of the public Bull-baiting, boxing, and cock-fighting, are little
AME. known in the United States, Dancing and music are particular form of religion does not disqualify, as the N. AMERICA. very common, even among the lowest of the citizens. profession of
any mode of faith does not furnish a qua- RICA. Early marriages are usual; a custom easily ac- lification, for civil office. We know not by what epithet Puitical counted for from the cheapness of lands, and the fa- to distinguish this arrangement; it is not toleration, for Political en Moral cility of procuring a livelihood.
no parties can be said even to differ from the govern
State. Although the thirst for, and the pursuit of wealth ment, since that government establishes no religion,
is universal, yet there are causes which contribute to and, as such, has no creed, or form of worship; per- United Lates. prevent its accumulation to excess in any one point, haps it ought not to be termed indifferentism, since, States.
among which a strong propensity to personal extrava- without implying any feeling with regard to the pringance, and the abolition of the English laws of descent ciples of religion itself, or toward any of its adopted
in all their operations, occupy no inconsiderable place. forms, that subject is simply left untouched and unwbordi There is another feature in the American character, obstructed. It is a fundamental principle of the con
which arises no less from the nature of the political stitution of the United States, that no law shall ever institutions, than from the state of the country, and be passed to establish, or give any political preference its various facilities for reaching a comparative inde- whatever to any particular form of religion. pendence. As there is no family, or hereditary wealth, In some of the states the congregation of each church so there is no family authority in the United States, contracts to support its minister so long as he continues Children are equal to their parents, scholars to their to perform his duties, and this contract is enforced by masters, clients to their lawyers, clerks to the mer- law. In those of New England the law enacts that chants whose affairs they keep in order, and labourers every individual shall subscribe to the support of his (for servants and masters there are none) to their em- minister, although it leaves to his own choice the sect ployers. It has been said with vivacity, and with to which he may choose to belong. much truth, that “ the master himself, if he wishes his The prevailing religious sects are the presbyterians, Sects. affairs to prosper, must be the only servant in his own the independents, the episcopalians, methodists, and house." All the domestics, and even the children of baptists. Pure episcopacy here is exercised with con. the household are free; and to work or play, to exe- siderable authority. The bishop is the executive oute the duties required, or to neglect them, is, com chief over all the clergy of his diocese. The disparatively, at every one's option. For such a state of cipline, however, differs somewhat from that which is society no precedent is to be found.
observed in the church of England. The annual state The vanity of the American character is also very convention consists of luy delegates as well as clergy, prominent, and perhaps arises much from the very same the bishop presiding; and the general convention, causes. That the perfection of valour, wisdom, virtue, which meets triennially, is composed of all the bishops liberty and patriotism, is nowhere to be found but in of the Union, who form the upper house, and of lay deAmerica, is, amongst the Americans themselves, the legates and clergy from all the different dioceses, who universal axiom. In the administration of Washington, constitute the lower house of convocation. The bishops congress was engaged for three days in a debate on exercişe great authority over the diocesan clergy, and the question, “ Whether America was not the most possess very considerable power in regulating and enlightened nation on earth!"
governing the church. The great body of the congre. The lowest rank of the American citizens consist of gationalists are to be found in New England, though those who dwell on the borders of the woods, called some of their churches are scattered in the middle and back-wood men. Their sole occupation is to clear a southern states, which are, however, chiefly occupied little ground, on which they raise corn sufficient for by the presbyterians. Episcopacy prevails mostly in their own use, supplying their other wants by their New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and gun. These assimilate, in appearance and manners, South Carolina ; and is supposed to be gaining ground very nearly to the native Indians; and so addicted are in some parts of New England. The friends, or they to this savage mode of life, that they readily selt quakers, are most numerous in the middle states. their cleared lands, called “ improvements,” to any who The methodists occupy chiefly the interior of the may happen to be a little higher in the scale of human southern states, although they have meeting-houses being than themselves. They then remove further into scattered over the greater part of the Union The the woods, clearing more ground, and resuming their Wesleyans are chiefly, if not entirely, under a sort of accustomed method of living. A recent traveller episcopalian government. The baptists abound most lodged in the hovel of one of these men : it was the in the western states. The unitarians are chiefly conthird habitation he had built within one year, and he fined to the populous cities or towns. The Roman appeared again ready to sell; chimney to his hut there catholics are most numerous in Maryland, and in the was none; bedsteads, of uphewn logs laid across each large cities on the sea-coast. The Dutch reformed other; two chairs, one of which was broken, and a low church is principally confined to New York and New stool, constituted all its furniture, although the family Jersey. Jews are found in various parts, but they are consisted of himself, a pregnant wise, a boy nearly not numerous. “ In consequence of the entire indifgrown to manhood, three elder girls, and a numerous ference to religion on the part of the state governinfant family. A large iron pot, their guns, and a ments," says Mr. Bristed, “full one-third of our whole fiddle, were the whole of their domestic utensils, population are destitute of all religious ordinances,
Birkbeck's Notes on a journey in America, 8vo. and a much greater proportion in our southern and igion.
RELIG10x.-America presents a very singular aspect western districts.” This, it must be confessed, is rather with regard to religion. She is, in fact, the first coun a gloomy statement. Oaths, however, are administered try which bas tried the great experiment of allowing on the Gospels; and, we believe, it is generally reunlimited freedom of opinion, so that the want of a quired, as a sort of test, in certain cases, that the
N. AME- citizens should avow their belief in the existence of a however, it received the royal assent, after passing' N, ave. RICA. Supreme Being, and a future state of rewards and pu- through the house of lords with scarcely any opposition: RICA,
nishments. After the statement of these facts, it is still it was provided that the law should not take effect andliticra hardly necessary to inform the reader that morality till the month of November following. This proceeding Politie State, is at a very low ebb; and that the lowest order of the immediately occasioned the utmost alarm. Upon the and More inhabitants are greatly addicted to drunkenness, lying, arrival of the news at Boston, the ships in the harbour
and the most vulgar and brutal practices and amuse- hoisted their colours half-mast high, in token of deep Chero States.
ments. Latitudinarian notions of religious obligation mourning, and the bells were muffled and rang a funeral Skate naturally and almost invariably engender immorality in knell. The act was reprinted, with the figure of a death's practice and infidelity in theory.
head in the title instead of the king's arms, and it was pubThe late increase of Sunday schools, and of mission- licly burned with the effigies of its authors and supportary and Bible societies, seem to indicate a meliorating ers. The press teemed with libels against the king and condition of the public mind in the United States with parliainent, and one of the newspapers even bore for its regard to religious affairs. Recently, as these excel- title the figure of a snake cut in thirteen pieces, each lent institutions have been introduced, their beneficial of which bore in succession the initial letter of a colony, effects are already widely spread, and are continually with the significant motto, “ Join or die.” Extreme increasing in every direction. The missionary societies dissatisfaction, in a word, manifested itself throughout are said to pay particular attention to the conversion every part of the continent, and the colonies having of the native Indians.
unanimously adopted a resolution to petition for a History History.--Although the great events of American redress of grievances, and formed associations to pre
history will necessarily be inserted in another division vent the importation and use of British manufactures
colours, which had again the effect of rousing a most At the time when the revolt in question occurred, vehement and powerful opposition, and, in 1770, parlia. Great Britain was in the very zenith of her glory, having ment again retraced their steps, and took off these just previously triumphed over the united power of duties, leaving only threepence a pound on tea. France and Spain, and obtained confirmation of her insignificant tax was, however, sufficient to awaken the claim upon North America on this side the Mississippi, jealousy and continue the irritation of the colonists, with the exception of the island of Orleans, in a defini- who were not diverted from a consideration of the tive treaty of peace concluded, in 1763, at Paris. The principle which the imposition asserted, by the trifling expence of the late war had been immensely great, as nature of the tax itself
. Measures, therefore, were the exertions which had been made against the hostile adopted among themselves for encouraging their own nations had been extensive and energetic: the conse- manufactures and productions, and to retrench foreign quence was, that the British parliament, in an evil hour, superfluities; the importation of tea being in the mean adventured upon the plan of attempting to tax the time prohibited. In several of the governments a concolonies. In April 1764, the parent legislature passed tinual warfare was kept up with the people; assemblies two acts, to impose fresh duties on their trade, and to were perpetually called and dissolved : grievances and prohibit the issue of paper-money. These excited some remonstrances were stated and framed; and an act of discontent; the Americans, and their friends at home, parliament was passed, appointing the governors and complained of the clause which required the duties to judges to receive their salaries of the crown, with a view be paid in current coin, and of that which related to the of making them independent of the provincial assemblies, jurisdiction of the admiralty courts; they also pleaded and removeable only at the king's pleasure. These, that the prohibition of paper-money left them no circu- in connection with a multitude of unwelcome measures, lating medium, as former regulations had deprived them exasperated the public feeling, and paved the way
for of gold and silver. Their views, however, were dis- open revolt. On the 2d of March, a fray took place at proved by the fact that, within two years from the Boston, which, though at first only an affair between a passing of this act, the course of exchange on bills private soldier and an inhabitant, not merely became drawn on England, from being at a discount between serious in consequence of involving others on both sides thirty and forty per cent. rose to the proper level, and, in the dispute, but aggravating the dislike already ex. instead of banishing gold and silver, was, in reality, thé isting against the military, produced another dispute efficient means of bringing a circulating medium into on the 5th, which excited great commotion in the whole the colonies.
town. This again led to a public trial, which furnished Stamp-act. But the measure which was the most repugnant to occasion for an annual observance of the day during
their feelings consisted in the attempt to raise a revenue several successive years, in which inflammatory oratious
AME. open rebellion,
The people were excessively irritated The entire population of the town was summoned to N. AMEat the vigilance of an armed schooner, which had been resistance, and it was voted in a large assembly, “ that placed at Providence, in Rhode Island, to prevent the tea should not be landed, that no duty should be
Political itical smuggling; and about two hundred men having entered paid, and that it should be sent back in the same Moral the vessel by night, unshipped the officers and crew, bottoms." The owners and shipmasters were com
and burned the schooner. The offer of reward of manded, at their peril, to suffer the tea to be landed, 500l. produced to discovery. About the same time, entered at the custom-house. Every precaution was,
States, some private letters, written by the royal officers in at the same time, adopted, to circulate instant alarm, Boston to persons in official situations in England, if requisite, throughout the country. An armed watch recommending decisive measures against the Ameri- mounted guard at the wharf, with proper centinels, in cans, were discovered and published. The disap- sight of the king's squadron in the harbour and two repointment experienced by the British government with giments of infantry in the castle, and other meetings of regard to a revenue to be extracted from tea, induced the inhabitants were repeatodly held and adjourned ; them to form a plan of introducing it by means of the and the people, with the fullest knowledge that they East India company, which was empowered to export were actually in an open state of revolt, determined all sorts of tea to any place duty free. Several ships to proceed. Another vessel had now arrived, and was were accordingly freighted, and dispatched to America; wrecked at cape Cod; what cargo remained was conand factors in the principal ports were appointed to veyed to the castle. The masters of the different vessels receive and dispose of their cargoes. The directors were ordered to apply for a clearance, and return
were to satisfy the treasury for the duties of the teas home, but they were informed by the collector of the E thus disposed of in America, and to indemnify them- customs that their ships must be first unladen; and
selves by demanding threepence per pound more from they were desired to petition the governor for his manthe purchasers, than would otherwise have been ne- date to pass the castle, who replied that he could not cessary. The colonists, however, immediately perceived grant such a pass consistently with the law and with his that this was an indirect mode of opposing their resolu- duty to the king, unless the vessel were properly qualitions and procuring a taxation, and measures were fied from the custom-house. When this answer was adopted to prevent the landing of the teas. A person reported to the public meeting, it was immediately disdispatched from Philadelphia proposed to the people of solved, and the crowd proceeded to the wharf under Boston, that if they would engage to prevent the landing Hancock, Adams, and other leaders. A party was of the tea, the former city would adopt a similar mea seen advancing from the N. side of the town in the sure. A proposal of the same nature was also acquiesced disguise of Mohawk Indians, headed by Captain Wood, in at New York, and the consignees of the tea were who boarded the ships, and having opened 342 chests, commanded at these places to resign their offices, under committed them to the waves. threats of corporal punishment. The pilots were ordered As soon as the account of this transaction reached Bostou to withhold their assistance from the ships, and, upon Great Britain, the parliament resolved on punishing the port-bitl
. their arrival, they were remanded to England. One delinquents, and a bill was passed on the 25th of instance of an attempt to land tea being detected, March, 1774, called the Boston port bill, “ To disconseventeen chests were seized, and thrown into the river. tinue the landing and discharging, lading and shipping At Charlestown, in South Carolina, the tea was landed, of goods, wares and merchandizes, at the town of under the direction of the mob, and thrown into a damp Boston, or within the harbour," which threw the incellar to perish.
habitants into great consternation. The town resolved In the beginning of November, a meeting of the in- that this was an oppressive measure, and called on the habitants of Boston and the neighbouring town was colonies to concur in preventing all importations from convened, under the tree of liberty, and the consignees the mother-country: and most of them determined on were ordered to appear to resign their offices, and to concurring with Massachussets in opposing the parliaengage, or oath, to return the expected teas to England, mentary proceedings. which they refused, after two applications to the same Successive acts of a hostile tendency were now passed Other acts. purpose. After in vain attempting to seize them, another for the purpose of intimidation, but without success. fornal meeting was held, and resolutions adopted at Of this nature were the act“ For the better regulating all events to prevent the importation of the tea. The government in the province of Massachusetts bay;" multitudes collected on this occasion were informed another for sending any person indicted for murder or that, as it was evident there must be a quarrel with the other capital offence, committed in aiding the magisBritish government before their rights would be secured, trates in exerting the laws, to any other colony or to the present was the most eligible period. The repeated Great Britain for trial; and the Quebec bill, which refusal of the consignees was resolved to be a daring extended the bounds of that province, and secured affront: but another assembly being held ten days many privileges to the Roman Catholics. The difafterwards, they were again desired to relinquish their ferent colonies, however, maintained a correspondence appointments, on pain of being declared enemies to on the subject of the unconstitutional acts of parliatheir country, which was again declined. The governor ment, and at length concurred in holding a congress Congress and the consignees now both appealed to the council, at Philadelphia, Oct. 26, 1774, to concert measures for at Philawhich, after some days of deliberation, at length deter- the preservation of their rights. The proceedings were delphia. mined on rejecting the petition of the latter, and advising dispassionate and loyal, but characterized by firmness the former to renew his orders to prevent all offences as well as by unanimity; and this meeting appealed against the law. The day preceding, one of the tea both to the inhabitants of America and Britain; to the ships had arrived, and was soon followed by two others. former, to persist in defending their constitutional rights;