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then move forward without orders, act together without combination, and brave the flaming lines of battle, without entrenchments to cover, or walls to shield them. No dissolute camp has worn off from the feel. ings of the youthful soldier the freshness of that home, where his mother and his sisters șit waiting, with tearful eyes and aching hearts, to hear good news from the wars; no long service in the ranks of a conqueror has turned the veteran's heart into marble; their valor springs not from recklessness, from habit, from indifference to the preservation of life, knit by no pledges to the life of others. But in the strength and spirit of the cause alone they act, they contend, they bleed. To this, they conquer. The people always conquer. They always must conquer. Armies may be defeated; kings may be overthrown, and new dynasties imposed by foreign arms on an ignorant and slavish race, that care not in what language the covenant of their subjection runs, nor in whose name the deed of their barter and sale is made out. But the people never invade ; and when they rise against the invader, are never subdued.
Before quitting the subject, we are tempted to pause a moment and advert to the consequences to ourselves, and the consequences to the world, of the noble and manly stand taken by our free-spirited fathers in those trying days. As to the effects of it on ourselves, we have only to cast our eyes over the green fields stretched out around us, which are waving with the rich and verdant abundance of the promised harvest, under the tillage of a hardy yeomanry, protected by a system of equal laws, and flourishing in union with all the blessings which free institutions can impart to a happy people; and ask ourselves how much of all this would have been, had not our fathers drawn the sword in vindication of their insulted rights. Or look forth upon the broad and fathomless ocean, and as you behold the canvass of our ships whitening every sea, and the striped flag of our country floating in triumph over the remotest waters, and the thunder of her cannon resounding on every shore, do you not feel persuaded that none of this glorious display of naval strength would ever have met the eye, if our ancestors had not declared, as they saw the contest approaching, Give us freedom or give us death? Enter the populous cities, which are now scattered abroad over the country, and as you hear the busy hum of active life, and see the stately palaces which arise on all sides, and note all the marks of splendor, opulence, and power, which abound in them, consider what portion of this would exist, had we continued to bow the neck to the yoke of transatlantic taskmasters. In fine, our ancestors were then feeble and oppressed colonists, they were, comparatively speaking, few in number, and they were only sprinkled along the shores of the Atlantic or on the banks of our majestic rivers on this side of the Alleghany; but since then, and under heaven, because our sires resisted when they did, we are now wealthy, numerous, and powerful; we have taken our rank with the nations of the earth, as among the first in arts and arms,among the first in social improvement,—and promising to continue among the first for ages yet to come. And we have now spread the empire of our civilization far into the interior regions of our country, where but a few years ago was nothing but a wide and waste wilderness, and where are now the busy haunts of men, who, the same at the mouth of the Mississippi or the Merrimac, on the far-ofi' waters of the princely Missouri or on the sea-girt rocks of Massachusetts, are every where frec-born Americans.
And unless we greatly deceive ourselves, the consequences have not been less distinctly marked upon other nations. The inhabitants of Europe and of Spanish America had for centuries been groaning under the tyranny of the feudal institutions,-obliged to cower beneath the sceptre of military despots, or to kiss the foot of haughty temporal priests. The people had no rights, --no liberties, -no privileges, but such as the condescension of their kings saw fit, out of their most princely pleasure, to grant. But the example of our revolution went forth, and taught them that there was no mystic charm in royalty which brave men could not break. The name, the fame, and the achievements of our heroes and statesmen were sounded abroad, and served as a watchword to the lovers of liberty all over the world. Our country was the birthplace of modern freedom; but no sooner had her pinions acquired strength and maturity, than she flew forth into other climes, to establish her temples on the ruins of baronial castles and feudal prison-houses..
The prophets of young freedom, summoned far,
And Washington, the tyrant-tamer:these are the names, which have imparted inspiration to all who spurn at slavery, wheresoever they wander, on the banks of the Po or Tagus, the Amazon or La Plata, and which will continue to impart it, until Truth and Freedom and Justice shall cease to have a name among men.
THE IMPROVEMEMT OF COMMON ROADS. The spirit of improvement is abroad in our country. Canals are intersecting it in various directions, and Bridges, which, next to ships, exhibit the proudest evidence of skill in architecture, are spanning our mighty rivers to enable us to pass from shore to shore ; while Steamboats, which of themselves will be sufficient to constitute an epoch in the history of man's inventions, are penetrating our territories by every pavigable river which can afford them access. Thus every succeeding year is furnishing new testimonials of the march of improvement.
Canals are of vast benefit to the community, wherever the amount of transportation, and the resources and wealth of the population, will enable us to avail ourselves of the natural facilities afforded for constructing them. Railways too, we are willing to concede to our brethren of the Quarterly Review, under equally favourable circumstances are of even greater utility. But we entertain an opinion that the latter are adapted only to a country of dense population and great internal resources ; and could yet be applied in very few places to advantage, in a country so extensive and thinly peopled as our own.
Our common roads, or, in the language of the statutes, our public highways, must continue, for a long time to come, to afford the principal means of transportation to the greater part of the community; and to the improvement of these roads, we should think, a portion of that public spirit, which now prevails in the land, might be profitably directed.
In their contributions to support the public burthens, no tax is apparently paid with more cheerfulness by our yeomanry, than that which is assessed for the repairs of the roads. But the funds appropriated to this object, though barely sufficient in most parts of the country to make the roads tolerable under the best management, are often sadly misapplied. No regular system of repairs has been pursued. Surveyors in many towns are changed at every annual appointment. The duty is an arduous one, the compensation trifling, and the doctrine of rotation in office appears in this case to have been effectually reduced to practice. Every supervisor has a plan of his own, which, without more than an ordinary share of confidence in his individual judgment, he thinks at least as good as that of his neighbour; and too often the chief purpose of the new surveyor seems to be to undo the labours of his predecessor. A temporary repair, such as may last till the next wintry deluge shall sweep it away, seems frequently the farthest
bound, to which the common notions of road-making have extended; as if the annual appropriation was designed for the benefit of the present year, and that alone.
But it is an ungrateful office to find fault, if we are not prepared to suggest some remedy ; and, in the present case, a remedy has been devised, which needs only to be known, that it may be brought more extensively into practice. The defects of the common method of constructing roads must be attributed to a want of experience. Nor have we, who inhabit a country comparatively new, been the only sufferers. The long-travelled countries of Europe have almost equally with ourselves endured the inconveniences incident to the want of a settled system on this subject. The science of road-making (and in practical importance it more justly claims the rank of a science, than many pursuits which have been dignified with that title) is just beginning to be understood in Great Britain. For about ten years the new method of constructing roads, first adopted and practised by Mr McAdam, has been pursued there; and such has been the success which has attended it, so complete has been the conviction of its superiority over all former methods, wherever it has been introduced, the conflicting interest and prejudice, which in common with every important improvement, it has had to encounter, have in this short time been so completely removed, that its excellence can no longer be questioned ; and there can be no doubt that it will henceforth be adopted in preference to all other modes of making and repairing roads in that kingdom. Travellers of all descriptions, mail contractors, and civil engineers, parliament and people, upite in the most ample testimonials in its favour, and liberal grants have been made to Mr McAdam in remuneration for his service in this department as a public benefactor.
A concise description of the plan on which these roads are constructed is all that our limits will admit. For a more particular and satisfactory account we must refer to the Essay of Mr McAdam himself, the eighth edition of which was published in London the last year, and which we hope soon to see republished in this country. His method mainly consists, after preparing the bed of the road for the purpose in doing which all the stones near the surface must be removed), in covering it with a flooring of broken stone of eight or ten inches in thickness, the largest stone not to exceed six ounces in weight. These fragments of stone are soon orn smooth by the travelling, and unite by their angles into a solid, impenetrable mass, over which the wheels of the heaviest carriages will pass without making any sensible impression. Another important part of the system is to have the side gutters or watercourses so constructed as effectually to drain the water from the earthy bed of the roa that it may not be injuri
ously affected by the winter frost; and for this purpose it is desirable, that the bed of the road should not be below the level of the adjacent fields, but when practicable raised a little above that level. The impervious covering or roofing of stone will prevent any inconvenience from the rain, which falls upon it, and, thus protected, the road is subject to no other injury than the necessary but gradual wear of the stone materials of which it is constructed. Under such circumstances an earthy bed is even preferred to a rocky one, as it yields more beneath the weight of the load carried over it, and the wear of the road is less on that account. It is particularly insisted on by Mr McAdam that no stones exceeding six ounces in weight be admitted in any part of the road. If larger stones be placed at bottom, according to the method which has been long pursued by many road-makers, while those of a smaller size are placed on the surface, the larger stones will in a short time rise to the top, thus making the surface rough and uneven, and at the same time penetrable by the rain-water, which will gradually undermine and destroy the foundation or bed of the road.
Such is a brief outline of the manner of making roads, which we hope ere long to see extensively introduced into our country. It is doubtful whether any portion of the globe is more favourably situated to reap the benefit of this improvement, than is our own New England. Our seaboard districts are abundantly supplied with granite, which is said to be the very best material for this purpose ; while the greenstone of our western counties resembles very nearly the whinstone of Scotland, which is represented by Mr McAdam as second only to granite in the good qualities by which it is recommended. With such facilities to encourage us in the race of improvement, what but a more general acquaintance with the system can be wanting to ensure its application to the important public roads in this section of the union ? The first expenditure will no doubt be somewhat greater than is incurred by pursuing the old method, but in every instance it cannot fail to prove excellent economy in the end ; and in very many cases it will be found, that the annual expense now necessary to keep the roads in tolerable repair falls little short of what would, upon the new principle, construct a good road, which would last several years with scarce any additional expense.
The experiment has been tried and with the best success in this country. Two of the streets in the town of New Bedford were constructed last year upon this plan, and we believe a few other attempts have been made on a small scale, sufficient to satisfy all, who have had an opportunity of witnessing them, of the excellence of the system. In the cities of London and Bristol, the pavements of several entire streets have been taken