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Miscellany: Interesting Narrative: Account Of A Visit To Eng...

Miscellany: Interesting Narrative: Account Of A Visit To Eng... image
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ïicbig the substance of an Address delivercd by Amasa Walker, Fr of. of Political Economy at Oberlin, August 14, 1844,You have rëquested me, my friends, to give you sotne account of my late iour in England, but Í know not whero to begin, and Í am sure 1 shall not know where to leave ofT Kngland is a great iheme. - She is lo the present age what Rome was to the rest of the world in the days of the Antohies, the gi'eat centre of dommefce, of wealthj a( science and lherature, of social and moral infiüehde, and of civil and military power. Every thing, therefore, that relates to England, interests all mankind, and her moral and social position and movements are a subject that may-well excite the anxious solicitude of i' every friend of humanity in every quarter of the globe. My remarks will be desultory; and must nccessarily be brief, ; for I can only glance at the few of the many objects that came under my notice, during the four months I spent abroad. I was a delégate, as you who hear me know, from the Ohio State Anti-Slavery Society to the World's Anti-Slavery Conyention, held at London, June 1843. I reached London the second day of the seseion of the Convention. It was a good one, though of course it did not excite so much interest as the one held threo years before, that being the first of the kind ever assembled. Much useful information was elicited from all parts of Christendom and the world, on the subject wbichcalled the Convention together, and a new impulse given to the cause of human rights. lmmediately after the adjou rnment, the World's Convention for the promotion of Peace was held, made up very much of those who had compoBed the ather - of the philanthropists orland and of other countries (sixteen Joai e from the United States) - a fine her ibloge of men- sympathizing in the tryn grand object, the promotion of Peace ered ng nations. The Quakers held of ving rse a prominent place - an influential are y in England - more sö than here. - yeai ny members of Parliament were and -Dr. Bowring, Mr. Cobden, the great uêcc Ier in Pari. of the Anti-Corn-Law the cement, Mr. Crawford, Mr. Hughes, ly c Brotherlon, and Mr. Hindly, who &c. ï the Pres. of the Convention. The witl :ting went off as well as was expected on t any body. It was feared that much P ision of opinión would take place, in i ig as we did from all parts of dar! i- meeting for the first time, - but are -e was none}- -the Convention united the this grand principie, that "War is seer istian;" and on this they ucted. and occurred to break the bond of union that the meeting - all its proceedings were is s( monious - a memorial to all the gov nesi ments of Ëurope, (and in fact of the ble. rld) was adopted, prayingeach nation enti nsert in every treaty hereafter to be the Ie, an article binding the contracting Par ties to submit their diíTerences to the fecl itratiun of a friendly power. This owr norial has since been presented to as : government in Europe and also to moi own. Soon after the close of the P iventions, I received an invitation, eve g with other Americans, to be present gnr Hartwell Park, at a Peace and brij anee celebration, on the 4th oí July. a n e day was chosen probably oul of p y to the Amoricans who were invited. we rtwell Park is now in the hands of Dr. stu e, a somewhat distinguished mnn,- a un mber of what is called the Cotirt of ge ictors Coinnions, and the President of tni i London Peace Society. It is quite a l F lace, being the residence of Louis 00 k7 111. during the years of his sojourn la' England when he was an exile from 'J anee. It was very interesting to me, SC1 ving never seen anything of the kind 1L fore. We found the people assembled te great numbers, with their tente ftl! , cc. &c. - wilh preperations in short nr r a regular Peace and Temperance Pic tn ie. We repaired to the lawn where'l e addresses were made. All the j nis were called upon to speak, and the 0Í counts of the progress of Peace and tr emperance in this country were w id with great interest. Nex. morning e spent in viewing the Park; in the a rnoon anolher meeting was held, as al rgcas the former; people from all It rs flocked in. There were speeches, ri ngs, &c. On the whole an excellent n eeting, and much was done to advance fc ie causo of Temperance and Peace in ai lat country. Dr. Lee has a splendid e bservatorv, built at immense expense, p wished when I saw it, that we had the ti bservatory and Dr. Lee too in Oberlin. h Inglnnd has many Observatories, and F lany Dr. Lee's. This country very few; o ley cottld well spare them, and we much v eed them. r lmmediately after this we left London 1 reet for Paris-took the Brighlon L :ad, which Brighton, by the way, is a city f recent origin, reminding one of our I wn cities. Embarked on board I oat, cfossed the channél5 landod at r ght, passed ihrough the vexatíous Í ense of a custom-house examination, - s f trunks, passports, &c, took the t ence for Rouen, fifty miles distant. - 'ranee pi'esentsa great contrast lo and. Geologically the country is much i he same; bul as Dr. Humphrey said, 'Frenchmen and Englishmen agree in ( me thing alone, viz: That neilher will ï iave any thing Hke the other." The i ►caulififl Jaíids along f he river, which : tretched to the extent of visión, were j er high cultivaron; but there are tcw i uiclosures. Tho land is laid ouí into L trips, ííve or 3Íx rods wide, and i , ng as far back as you can see. Each , trip is a farm. And here we see a conrast with England. France has five milions of land proprietors, England has but ïbout 250,000, n Jess number than there iré in the single State of Ohio. This s ane reason why distress among the people s so much less frequent in France than n England. 'The people can get their support from their land. But this arrangement gives the landscape a very curious aspect, - each mnn planting his own strip to suit himself, ine surface is] checked over with the patches of vegetables, and the whole looks like a great counterpane. No body uves on tbese farms. The people all reside in villages. As you go along not a house is to be seen, by and by you come upon a hamlet, where the people dwell in a cluster together. - They live here, and goout to their farnrs to work. Rouen ia an interesting oíd city, - the ancient seat of the Norman power. It is filled with antique buildings, - tho oíd Cathedral for instance, which dates 800 years ago, - thc Palacc of Justice, wherei of Arc wastried and condemned lor mat eflbrts to gain liberty for lier not s nen. These ancient edifices are up ai I with an incredible amount of servt ;, statuary, and such things. They lieve the acciimulated labor of a thousand come rs. And in those days wealth, your power, being in a few hands, were No, I not for the profit and happiness of had rrrany, but to {eed the caprice or We f the few. And so the old churches, werc both in F ranee and England are built passi i a magnificence inconceivable by us meai his side the water. " e aris contrasts strikingly with London seng ts external appearance. London is for t c, dusty, and smoky. The old paris Séfofc as black as soot can make them, and ine houses look as though ihey had never ihrói ï ai.y paint. The climate is so damp, long stone coal is so freely used for fuel, wlie fogsare almost constant, and the air us. ) filled with soot that outward with of the houses seems a thing as hi ín Pnris they burn wood almost blue rely. They build with a whiter stone, and I atmosphere is drier and purer, and rece is looks bright and glowing. One Eng s as if he were at home in some of our yi i bright cities. But then London is Rach arge again as Paris, and there is ïnuch oor re comfort in London. ' ne aris is like the French nalion, all show, verj ry thing of surpassing beauty, the that eng - the fountains, the edifices - all ken ght and beautiful. One might spend the nonth in Paris profitably, in a moral ted nt of view. But to our visit. We the nt first to the Royal Libmry - a most n 3 pendous collection - a million of I o íes gathered into one place. The ner 3t library in the world- all arranged in my 5 most beautiful manner. In one hall 1 nced 500 feet. Then there are G00, co 0 manuscripts besides- in all written 'T ïguages under the sun, well nigh. - , ist volumes, too - many of the ripts are 5 or 6 times as large as a lai ge nu imily Bible - most e.xquisitely a)( j; all done with the pen. We visited thv 50 the Palace of Versailles. A (Jeep tha oral lesson is to be learned from a view mi ereof- it is indeed an immense pile, ga J00 feet in length, it was built by Louis rol IV in inconccivable follv and dal Wl' jss - it, along wilh other stupendous ex. avngances, plunged France into debt, lf hich ended eöly üi the Revolulion. _ w It is used now, not as a Palace, but as qu store house of paintmgs and staunry, f id is filled from one end to the other. - E' is said that if all the paintings weie wt inged side by side, they would reach five to liles; and I should think it might be true, Pl r only think, that immense building - II made into rooms, and three sides of very room covered with them. A great [j( ortion of the paintings ar? repiesentaa ons of battles, triumphs, seiges, military ih orses; in short, the military history of fif 'ranee. Here the young Parisians and th ther Frenchmen go to fire their souls A ith military glorv, to catch and feed and pen the spirit of war and bloodshed. - t is therefore, despite its splendour, a fj ;reat nuisance. fB One of the objects for which I visited o 'aris was as one of a committee of the 1 'eace Convention, (Mr. Beckwith, P etary of the American Peace Society, )r. Cox of N. York, and myself) to preent to Louis Phijlijppe, king of the French he memorial adopted by the Convenlion g vhich already mentioned. Wc v vere empowered to add to our committee Mr. Toase, an English clergyman e 3ent in Paris i'or 20 years. We 'called I an him and found him vcry glad to act J ,vith us. After consulfing ns to the 8 ner in which to gain an interview with l he king, it was decided, on Mr. Toase's udgment, to obtain it through Monsieur Lïuizot, the French Prime Minister, who, ] 9 you may know, is one of the greatest nd best men in France, and whom God 11 seems to have raised up ot a most cal period for a most important ptirpose in French affaire. A letter was addressed lw Mr. Toase, to the Minister for Foreign AfTairs, informing him of the nature of our business, and requesting an interview. He answered the note, assenting to the request, and appointing the next day at 12 o'clock. We waited on him at his palace at fhe Boulevards. He received us kindly, conferred with us freely on the object of our visit, talking English very well, though with a forcign accent. He is an c.xceedingly sédate man in appearnnce, having not at all the vivacity of FrcRchmen in general; a mild, thoughtful countenance, like a sédate New-Englander. Mr. Guizot offercd to write to his Majesty, asking a conference. He did so. Ere long a messer.ger arrived from the king, inviting ns to attend at tho Palace of the NeaWy at half past 12 orclock. We accordingly rode thither, 6 miles. At the gate, we found drawn up on one side a company of Infantry and on the other one of horsc gunrds. True indeed the maxim, "Uneasy lies the head ctop us, but let U3 pass on. We drovc and h nd wero received by a multitudO of lhey ints in the livery of Louis XI. (I bei nloni ) ancient enough at nny rate to have j ; out of the ark. (Question.) Were company arrayed in thecourt-dress?) n(t J we were dressed like Ámericans. I ,p0ll jn such clothes as 1 have on now. - t,8 ( were shown into o room, where we their ! obliged to wait a while, the time poysi ng vcry agreeably however, by ond t isof a vcry valuable library, &C- tured could see arriving constantly mesC1SI ers. from every quarter, with packets " lie king. After halfan hour, a J er carne with the inlormation that poct :ing would see us. We were shown ,jere ïgh passage ways and halls, till at graQ th, we carne to the audience room, Oat r re his Majesty was waiting to recéive guuli He was standing, dressed in blue, ony? his sword and cpauléttes, very much why s picture ahvays represente him, a need military dress - his sword by his side, w" lus militarv hat under his arm. iie . and i ived us kindly, speaking excellent anoJ lish, as we were irflroduced. After cupb ng addressed a few words politely, to An(j , Mr. Beckwith presented the menon tal, explaining his objoct as he did so. V king went on to say that he was a ye f happy to receive such a memorial, Pav the public mind was becoming awat0 c ei to the subject of Peace, thai it was . ijl nav most interestmg that could be Xq j to the human mind as connected with a t[ mteresta ofnations. Saidhe, "When wa, 'our country, f called on for a toast, live Iways gave, "Universal and to it Peace to the World," and that is uh sentiment still." Ttl Ie went on to say, "I think the time is art nng wiien war wül cease - it is l0 and it will be os it ought to be obolished." 80J then spoke of the commonly receivetl Pei Ie, '"In peace prepare for war," and poid 'l t warlike preparations only served to cai se the spirit of war in the nalion at home, I stirred up a spirit of opposition abroad, and e" is doubled the chances of colusión. "I c0 nk God," cxclaimed ho, War cosls too h(l ct, we kings cannot nfford to play at the j 1S me now." Ykp, indeed, the nalions of Eu S' e are ao in debt for former war?, that they n ■e not engage in new ones. The king, P' ietj the conference waa about to close, in c tcd that we should all be introduced again; 'n ftr said he, "I wieh to re.nember you." - tl] hen I was ntroduced as from ühio, he E ired, "From Cincinnaii?" "No," Í replied, a rom the north pari of the State, near Lake b( ie." "Ah yes,"' suid he, "I remerhber, I ' is at PitUburgh-I was thero in 1796." 1 ' ld him of the growth of our country- -that el tlsburgh was a largecity - the Birminghnm America. He was much interested in mj lation. We lefl Paris immedintely and icturned to a; Midon; and right glad were we lo get iho-e c rk and smeky as it is, for briyht as Paria is, n e strong arm of arbitary power is thcre- E 'ty-six thousand troops are onderarms in 1 at city every day. And v. ho supports them? nd for whotl h Kiiland isa glorious country, in the n ïry sense of the term, but yet as chritians, p )d philanthropist wc are buund to spnak out I iiihfully, for the world has hnd enongh of f ilteglry. England is one great contrat-t j t f wealih and poverty - palnces and cottages- . rdö and petants- ■-■■ -castles and Union oor houseö. There are in the United Kingom nine millton of peple, wlio, when they , ie down at night scarcely known what they , re to have for breakfast. Their nrms,weahli nd poveity have comporatively no menninjí mong vs . Such dreadful destitutit-n of sucli ast masses - we can scnrcely conceive of it. Iov; does it happen? Why is it? It is au asily explaincd ns a problem in arithmetic. f there were but five men in the world, and me of them should by fraud or violenc e get II the property, the rest would have none - hut is all. Many plausible rcasons are assignïdfor ihis etate of things- but this ia it in lain Englisli. A few roll in wealth and pplendor lliat wc lave no concepiion of. Weullh? Wby, a iplendid fortune, (o called,) among vs would 5carcely oe visible to the naked eye n Lonlon. London is a world in iteelf- a city as large as 6 or 1 New Yorks or as 10 Bpfllon. More people in it thnn tliere nre in all Ohio. A few roll in wealth. AM EnfflUfatneo are very fond of the splen lor of tlieir Queen, ol their nobility, of their nrmy. tlieir navy. But what is the cost of all thal! The hapjjinas of milliom. They ore proitd of their chains. l l tolcl them fo; nnd ihnt was the only thing ; for which an Eujïlióbniaii would get ofiended j at me, and till tliis delusion, this serti'.ity ! bn.ken up, there will ncver be freedom for England. While they admire the pomp of nobilitr and tbc tiríseí of röyality lhey canoot be free. I weutto Manchester, a large inanufacturmg town as large a ten Lowells, 330,000 people crowded into a small spnee. I nw tberc pninful eightf- I bod seen Windsor Csllc- I had eeen wlere tho Qucen lived, nffd now I saw her constituents- I hadden the splendor of royalty.and i.otv I lookfd on the poor l.andloom weavors who help pay 2,M)O,ono dollars to bt.pport royalty- a email sum indeed- but no mrrre con be had, and it has to do. A clergyman took me rounc1 nniong bi parishoncra in" the ncighborliood of Manchceter, mostly hnnd-looni weavers. They liveJ in one toom and wove in the other. Wo went round nmong thet. t me give a spéciwie. U ib rother, eoch nbout eixty ycars oíd- NI kcpt iwo looms going. skedthe oíd lady, 'How do yon ge: " T O wc get along now, ihanU God.- ReP' is high, but wc have an indulgent landPon who wil) wnit a week or two if we cann " et it sooner.' 'How mnch do yon cari)?' j b.v tl r biiillings a weck altogether.' Aml wilh aar hey pay their rent - buy locir oa!, - and be si food, and uil. Thëy bnrn ns few coala es tneir ile, Imve as littletbod as will kecp oul üf"tH lody togotíicr, so t lint very jnany are torA' wilh the rheutnatú-tu half their Uves iti '('enl quence. 'Vwj' paid ehe 'we can get 'esul f, since our daughter has gona to thc Hoy ry,1 (a place to which yon would no nppe eend yonr cliild tha to perdition, for the Conj irics there nre no: ike iba Faetones 182C ; Vhal do yon ]v 'Oat meal #" n tlio morningr, potatocs at noon, and stíPl ncal groei at night.' Said my cleiicnl held !, 'Look Cae the cupboard, do you eee eithi I l.ioked round, but prw none. 'And tne ' is there no cupboard?' Becuuse they " none; they fiayc nothlng to put in it,' Ia1"1 the rcply. They get iupper, and cal it cons í- breakthst, nono lei 10 set by- dinner, secu jut it all again nnd none )eft to keep for of si icr meal; and why should thoy havo a 'he onrd? Nocnpboanl! Vo cv p board! - V multitudes of people in Eugland have t f ,i the ell.VVindsor Castle must have 2,500,000 1 ar, and so poor men must go Imlf ftd to gn it. God forbid tho dny fihould ever come Mil ur land, wiien maeies of popla shall have 1 SS npboard. But let me teil you, if you wil; ans e Windsor Caslle, you must bc content '"i !o without a cnpbóatd. O l thanked God fö lousand times t hut my home was across thc er, that my childreri wero thcre, and would t1 i and (?ie there. In Englaud it is painful ni see how anxious even people in tji Ie circumstances are for their children. - IC( e truth is, the great mnjority in England rc viclimized to their institntions. Dl ns are evory thing-nmn nothing - I inuet ty r thot IVopeity, title, rank, they are res:ted, but mon.inere man, what is heworth? r 8 so - From the 6truclure of society, how j i it bejotherwiseí ' B-it I must stop 1 wisiied to have 10 the qne8tion so oflen put to'mc. - To what se ncluaion liave you come7 Is there vet cc pe for England? Is thc prospect dork? or t'1 itbright? íanswcr. Notwithstandingthe ú oomy picture I have drawn- ilrawn did I s y, no, not drawn, it 6 there riowr, and I bot esenl it as it js,already iniprinted deep in the l& uls of sufTering humonity.- 5 g this gloomy picture, 1 see most dittinctly e presago of a bright and glorious day for n ngland. It is coming - coming ns rapidly Cl i God can wisely basten it. - England is to d regenerated and disonthralled - those rt ans of crining men are to be ftrd- of C v bouIs, to be disburdened - and they stond eet. I have been slruck wil h the eirnilarity r jtweon the Engliih lower clnsse, and our ; ivn Southern slaves; thefame bowing, j ï Ie cringingr to the rich. nnd well born. The Tricultural population are alfnosi slaves, cxjpt they nre nol bought and fold.--l hey do rt peed to huy nnd sell, rmd whip men in ngland. They have a better system by far. 'hoy starve men to work. And man will ork under the Jash of hunger, harder than e will under the lash i)f the cart wlr.p. I do ot mean thnt the conilnion f the English oor is ür bd as that of slaves. No. No! Int vet it is fearlul, fearfnl, to see such sufering; to see man thns sacriftced to Instituiuns.