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Editor Courier :- Your readers will reinember that more than a year ago, Rev. James A. Spurgeon, brother of tbe worldrenowned divine of tbe same name, visited this country, making quite an extended tour through the United States and Canada. We chanced to be in London upon bis return to England, and so had tbe pleasurc of hearing his lecture delivered in the famous Metropolitan Tabernacle on " My Tra veis n America : UluMrated by Dissolving Views." Burns says, " Olí ! wad sonie powur the giftee gie us, To seo OUnelTM as Hhers see us," and my wife and I had quite a curiosity to sec whatthis intelligent "Britisher," as he called hiuiself, tbought of us Americana. The first view thrown on the canvass, was St. Paneras station, London, whero Mr. Snureeon took the cara for Liverpool. He thought our railway stations generally were quite inferior in m and magnificence to tliose in (Ireat Britain. He had neen two or three quite fine ones ; but as a rule they seemed built rather for use than show. At Liverpool he einbarked on one of the Cunard steauicrs, and during the fore part of the voyage had the usual experience at sea. The first day he thought himself a fooi for ever attempting to cross the "great pond," and was verily afraid he would die. The next day he thought himself a bigger fooi and was afraid he would not die ; the following day be began to think perhaps he had a few grains of sense left ; and ly the fourtli day he was himself again and enjoyed heartily all the rest of the voyArriving in the harbor at New York, sometime before landing a party of officials, and among them a newspaper reporter carne on board. The reporter was near him in a moment, and addressiDg bis friend said : " Is this Mr. Spurgeon?" " No, that is Mr. S. standing thcre." " Did you have a pleasant voyage ? " "Quite pleasant only a Hule foggy on the banks of Xewfoundland." All the while the reporter knew who Mr. Spurgeon was, and was writing away as fast as possible taking notes in Bhort hand. He talked with Mr. B. about ten minutes, asking a few questions ; and what was the lecturer's surprise next morning to 6nd a column and a half headod 8POEOEON'S BROTHER, aize medium, height uve feet ten, age, complexión- whole lile in fact. He was surprised to learn tuat his whole family were with him, and never knew before that he was venerable looking. His wife is a descendant of General Rurgoync, and hc was rathcr auiuscd when the Saratoga papers alluding to the dcfeat of the British army spoke of lam is Mrs. Spurgeon's husband : while in New York and almost cverywhere else, he was introduced as Mr. Spurgeon' s brother. Indeed he began to doubt bis own personal den tity. It rejoieed his heart to sec how his brother's faiiie had preceded him everywhere, and to tind ro uiany interested in the work of the Tabernacle. Many would come up to Um, sli:ikf hands cordially, and say " Why, don t you Itnow me ir. o. r r,iKiu or ten yeara ago I was a tueuiber of the Tabernacle.'" They wcre well dressed, dong well in business, and in fact ao changed in appearance since tbey left England looking rather secdy, that he tbought he was excusable lor not rccognizing his old frisad A Tiew of tbc New York postoffice was given, and then Broadway with lts fine stores called in England Aagt i also a view of the elevated railroad, and anotber of the late A. T. Stewarfs store. A view of Central Park and Hudson river were both greeted with applause by the audience. Here Üw MtH referred to our nuperior climate ; sai.l we bad very eold winters uw hot suuimers, but long pcriods of clcar, bright, beautif'ul weather. During the five weeks of his travels, wbile it rained occasionally hi, nijlit he never saw a drop of rain in the d;iy time ; the air also was so pure and irnigoratingit made him feel like a tiew man, at.d hr thought he now kocw why ihe had sp much lito, energy and go ahead about theui. Al'ter giving a view of l'hiladelphia and remarking apofl its strects " laid out on the square ; " and Independence Hall, so dear to evory American heart. Ncxt caiue a magniticont picture of tbeC'apitol kt Wa.-hington which he thought one of the Knust public buildings he had ever scen. Washington was the name of' minies in America, and here came out on the canvass a splendid portrait of the " Father of Our Country " at the sight of which the audience burst into a generous round of applausc. TheyshowedyouWashington'sautoxmi'h-, handkerchief, gloves and boots ; at last he got tired of hearing the vpry name of Wa-hington, great and pood man t! he was. Ncxt was ptmmtd a negro hut in ir ginia and a t'cw commeuts werc made on tUe colured peuple. He nuticed their love of finery and that a negro alinost always spoke of hts fellow as " ilin cilored gentleman " and one of our race as " tliat wliile man. M ujaij. The American have a few peculiuritic-i which he noticed. ïliey " gucs " a good deal, and "calcúlate" and " reckon." The conductora of a railway train ioatmd of saying, "All right ! " f-liouts "All aboard!" Asa people they like to do something bright, quick, and " Mnart." Everythmg is alive around them. and just now " booming." They have live newspaper.o, and live agenta mul tlu-y are a live people. An American told liim genuine BoglUbmea liad some queer aptMMOM, too. One of thi'in fitMUg a BMgvfieMll churcli thought it " awfully jolly," and visiting ¦ largo cemetery fincly laid out umi adorned, ho obf-erved, " ltV awfully jolly," and ;i painting would bc criticised as " awfully clevcr." He was thoroughly disgus - cd with the habit of spitting, everywhere prevalcnt in America. In the White House they showed him Lincoln's spittoon not for the president himself but for others. He cliiubcd up to the top of a chnrch steeple, and there was the DevtUble spittoon. It is a tanding marvel how the A mei ii-ans can do mi ïuuch spittin. Nexl he gave a map view of Chicago, sliowmg tbc extcut of the burned diítrict, and thougbt it marvcllous that the city had lieen rebuilt so quickly and in such a grand and royal stylc. Speaking of his preaehin and lecturing, hc thought the American audiences were less demonstrative than the English, and at first appearedcold and unfeoling- a very strange circuinstance when you consider the character of tbe two nations. They were for the 8rst fifteen minutes, he was well awarc, weighing the speaker in the balance; tak ing stock. They are accustomed to think for themselves, and at first appear hard to mov. Soon, however, tbe ice is broken and he thought he never had preaehed to a people that evinced a deeper devotion or truer sympathy and interest. You may set down all these stories that you hcar about their lack of devotedness and want of reverenee, respect and good breeding in thcir assemblks as all moonshine. Somcwho return to England, Iacking brains enough to give a true report, that would be interestiug, can only carricature, and from thcni come tiiatiy of the stories we hear of the Americana. Thcn he gave the Amercans a glowing tribute of praise, said they were sprung from good old Puritan stock, and were surely destincd to be the leadiog nation in tho world. While with them he feit as if he were walkiog at large, in the midst of a glorious freedom, especially fn regard to religious things. Every man there could worship God acconling to the dictates of nis owo conscience ; there were no Dissenters or Nooconformists - those terras would be unintelligible ; there is no distinction between chapel and ctaurch as here- all are callcd churches in America. Also he gave a beauliful view of the Natural Bridge in Virginia ; a most romantic picture of a woodland tcene in Florida, a state where he had heard the truins were advertised to stop at certain places fifteen minutes for divorce. AnuiUcr vipw on two of the Pacific railroads out in the far west, showing the snowsheds and mountain solitudes ; also views of Niágara Falls and Suspension Bridge. Ilis rcmark.s on thedrinking cuttoiusof the two nations wcre in our favor most decidedly . Never in a private house had wine been offered him, nor at the numerous pullic dinners where were assembled the leading men of the places visited, were you expected to partake of the " living cup"- a strange and sad contrast to the customs prevalent in hts own country. Said he, 11 The working class here cao oever hope to xmipete with their cousins across the briny ieep UDtil the ruinous and abominable Jrinking habits of the day are put away." He had aever seen an American minister touch a drop of the accursed stuff, and in thosc magnificent hotels all over the country, containing often 1,500 guesta not more thun fifty of the number would partake of intoxicating liquors. Here you were expectcd to order something for the good of the house. He thought the Baptists a very prosperous denomination ; spoke of their theological seminary in Kochester, N. Y., in terms of high praise, admired our public schools, and saw in the same the corner and tion stones of our success. He briefly spoke of his travels in Canada, and illustrated Montreal, ïoronto and Quebec by sevcral views. In conclusión he observed that his journey all through America had been a triumphal procession, evcrywhere he had been greeted with crowded houaes and the warmest friendship, part of which favor he modestly attributed to hisbrother's great fame. "A grand, noble country, full of dignity and power, with a marvellous future before her. Thank God for America ; but EngUnd. with all thv faults I love thee still.' Marcli lí, 1881.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News