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Full text of "Life and travels of Addison Coffin"

STEPHEN Eo WEEKS 

cuss OF 1886 ; pa D. THE JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY 

yeiRAW 

OF THE 

UNIVERSimY OF NdDEffl CAMDUNA 
ME WEEKS C(D)IL]LECTni(D)N 








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UNIVERSITY OF N.C. AT CHAPEL HILL 



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00032195945 

FOR USE ONLY IN 
THE NORTH CAROLINA COLLECTION 










Form No. A -368 




ADDISON COFFIN. 



Life and Travels 



OF 



ADDISON COFFIN 



WRITTEN BY HIMSELF 



CLEVELAND, O. 

WiiiiiiAM G. Hubbard 

1897 



Copyrighted by 

The Girls' Aid Committee of North Carolina 
Yearly Meeting of Friends. 

1897. 



GIRLS' AID COMMITTEE 

North Carolina Yearly Meeting of Friends. 



.. OBJECT ,,. 

To assist worthy girls in obteiining an education at Guil- 
ford College, by furnishing a suitable home for such as are 
willing to board themselves and by assisting them in paying 
their tuition. 

Money required for home, six thousand dollars. Fi\e 
hundred dollars already given. The work has been in oper- 
ation in cottages ten years. About one hundred girls ha\c 
thus been assisted. Over $8,000 have been spent in the 
work. There are se\eral hundred girls who ha\e no otlier 



means of obtaining an education. 



Cost of Board in Cottages, per month, 84.00 
Room Rent and Fuel, per term, 1.25 

Stationery and Books, per term, So.OO to 5.00 
Society Fees, per term, 1.00 

College privileges open to residents. 

Location for Home gix-en by the Board of Trustees of 

Guilford College. 

MARY M. HOBBS, 

Trcas. of Com. 
Guilford College, X. C. 



This work was undertaken at the earnest request 
of several friends of the author, and by him was 
donated to the Girls' Aid Committee of North Caro- 
lina Yearly Meeting of Eriends, with the hope that in 
Grod's hand it might be the means of procuring a com- 
fortable and satisfactory home for girls who are en- 
deavoring to educate themselves. In sending it forth 
upon its mission we have the assurance that while the 
cause for which it is published will receive material aid 
from all who purchase the book, they in turn will find 
both entertainment and information, and will receive 
only benefit by contact with the spirit of one so thor- 
oughly good and true as he who here gives us his 
life's story. 

Mary M. Hobbs, 
O? behalf of the Girls Aid Committee. 



^ 



PREFACE. 



For sometime past many of my companions of 
early life have solicited me to write a history of my 
life, and my knowledge of and connection with the 
Underground Railroad, as I am now the last survivor 
of those who entered the service of that mysterious 
institution in or previous to 1835. 

The thought of appearing as an author or writer 
had not entered my mind at this period of life; I had 
not kept a diary, or even notes of the passing events, 
always depending on memory for reminiscences of the 
past. My memory has become a wonder to many 
people, and it is the impression it has made that 
prompts the request of many for me to write a biog- 
raphy. In regard to memory, it is but just to say that 
it is not universal in its capacity ; things in which I am 
interested, things that are striking, things that touch 
and arouse sympathy, sorrow, joy, anger, disgust, ha- 
tred, hope, and fear; things that arouse, excite, or 
deeply impress; things that inspire, exalt, and refine, 
etc., require no effort on my part to remember; will- 
ing or unwilling they fix themselves upon my memory, 

(7) 



8 PREFACE. 

and cannot be forgotten. This peculiarity has come 
down to me through a long line of tribal heredity 
from pre-historic times, known in the past as second 
sight, and the gifts of the bards. My ability to locate 
and I'emember places was also' very good, which made 
me peculiarly fitted for the dangerous position of con- 
ductor on the Underground Railroad. I was not 
above the average in the athletic sports of tlie time, 
but had great powers of endurance, could ^'out wind" 
in running any boy or man in the neighborhood, was 
stout, but lubberly till nearly grown, then became 
active and s\vift on foot, which gave me marked abil- 
ity for my dangerous life. I also found it necessary 
to assume and cultivate odd ways and odd ideas, in 
order the better to conceal my real character and dan- 
gerous employment. To some extent I was cut oil 
from much of the social enjoyment common among 
my fellows, my peculiaiities sometimes made me un- 
popnlar with my lady associates and school mates, 
this was wounding to inner sensitiveness and caused 
me to shed many bitter tears, but above all and 
throngh all there was a conviction and o'ermastering 
impnlse in my heart that always said, ^^Go forward, 
fear not, I am with thee." The threadbare escapes, 
the feats of agility in running, the doors that were 
opened for escape when all seemed closed in, and it 
appeared as though T won Id pay the forfeit by a y\o- 



PREFACE. 



9 



lent death, are too startling for even this generation, 
and as they are not essential to the upbuilding of hu- 
manity, will soon be buried with me. 

Now that age and infirmity are weakening my 
faculties, the memories of childhood come back with 
startling vividness; whole chapters could be written 
about the little family, incidents of every day life, 
and the details of one day at school would fill many 
pages; with the memory of the incidents come back 
the faces, forms, dress and voices of the children, mak- 
ing a wonderful panorama. It was so with my 
mother; in her ninety-third year she could call up the 
names of her childhood associates, give their histoi7, 
where and when they died, etc., etc., etc. So it is 
no great wonder that my memory is retentive and 
distinct; yet all through life I have felt a conscious 
defeet in many ways, and many times would gladly 
have exchanged my memory for other abilities that 
I lacked. 



mTRODUCTORY CHAPTER. 



It is becoming papular in writing biographies to 
give the genealogy of the person and family^ Ac- 
cordingly I will give a brief sketch of my ancestry 
as kept in the family record on the Island of Nan- 
tucket, and as found among the old records of South- 
ern Sweden in i^orthern Europe. My father, Vestal 
Coffin, was the son of William, who was the son of 
Samuel, who was the son of John, who was the son 
of Tristram Coffin, who was one of a company of 
nine who, in 1660, purchased the Island of Xan tucket 
from the Indians, the deed being signed by two chiefs, 
Wanackmamack and Nickan(X>se. 

Beyond Tristram Coffin the line is unbroken back 
to Sir Richard Coffin, who came to England from Nor- 
mandy with William, the Conqueror. Then still 
back beyond Sir Richard it c^n l)e traced to the ar- 
rival of the Danites in Denmark in the second cen- 
tury, and through the Danites through the wandei*- 
ings of the ten tribes of Israel to Samaria in 72(5 B. C, 
and then back to Abraham. 

From the sixth to the tenth century the Coffins 

(11) 



12 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

bore an active part in all the conquests of the old 
Viking kings and rovers who terrorized Western En- 
rope for many centuries. 

Mv mother's maiden name was Alethea Fluke, 
a direct descendant of the Albanoids (ATOite Race; 
of Ireland, the last of the prehistoric race. When 
the first colony of Hebrews came to Ireland .1200 
B. C. the Albanoids were in possession of the island^ 
and had been for an unknown period; they were 
highly civilized, had a regular alphabet and written 
language, and knew many arts unkno\\m to the He- 
brews — who were suppose<l to have known all the civ- 
ilization of Egypt at that time. 

Soon after the landing of the Hebrews, strife 
arose between them and the Albanoids, which result- 
ed in open war. which continued much of the time for 
2000 years, when the latter were almost exterminated 
in a sanguinary battle, followed by an indiscriminate 
and merciless massacre. In 1784 there were but fif- 
teen of the Albanoids alive in all the earth. They left . 
Ireland and came to America. AVhen my grand- 
mother, Mary Fliike, died in 1827, my mother an([ 
her four children, even the last of one of the surviving 
families who ever had any children, and one other, 
lacks but two of being extinct to-day. 

Here I will say that when in Ireland in 1892 1 
found the ruins of the last stronghold of my ances 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



13 



tors. Thirty-six centuries ago there was a large. Driiiii 
temple in what, is now County Down, or Doon, built 
for worship and defense; when St. Patrick came he 
turned it into a Christian church. Successive sieges 
had destroyed nearly all the outer, defenses and its 
final capture and destruction 800 years ago left none 
to rebuild; yet a portion of the walls were too strong 
for the destroyers aiid remain to tell a story of blood 
and death not excelled in all Ireland. 

The Albanoid language was distinct from any 
other in Europe and had legendary traditions that 
go so far back that one could easily suspect. Ignat us 
Donnelly of drawing largely from it, in weaving his 
pleasing, plausible, wondrous story of ''Lost Atalan- 
tis" that carries us back into the antediluvian world 
and to Adamic time. 

With such ancestry it is little wonder that I in - 
herited peculiar traits of character, and managed, to 
hold a place amid . surrounding difficulty. . On my 
father's side the spirit of adventure manifested itself 
in the Underground Kailroad business and love of 
travel; on my mother's side a wonderfully retentive 
memory and fluent tongue, with the singular second 
sight, or mind reading. 

My father died in 1826, leaving my mother with 
four little children, one daughter and three sons; my 
sister Elizabeth was the oldest one, Alfred next, then 



14 LIFE AND TRAVEL^ 

myself; Emory was the youngest. My sister was gift- 
ed and beautiful above the average of her associates. 
My brother Alfred V. is living yet in Kansas, broken 
in constitution and almost helpless. His life has been 
one of unceasing storm, struggle and conflict. He 
entered the Underground Railroad service early in life 
and was one of the chief managers in North Carolina, 
from 1836 to 1852, when he had to flee for his life, 
being betrayed by one whom he least suspected, in 
aiding fugitive slaves to escape. He reached my home 
in Indiana where he and his family resided till New 
Year 1863, when he was called into the medical ser- 
vice of the government, for he was a physician. He 
was given charge of the refugee tribes of loyal In- 
dians in Southern Kansas, where he finally settled. 
During his connection with the Indians he had some 
terribly narrov/ escapes and desperate struggles for 
life. On one occasion he was assailed by bushwhack- 
ers twuce in one day, and saved his life each time after 
a desperate hand-to-hand encounter. The first as- 
sault was by two men who suddenly attacked him, 
the next time by three; he had no firearms, but his 
only weapon was a picket stake, like a policeman** 
club, which he wielded with such frantic energy that 
he saved his life. For three years he was m the 
midst of murder, assassination and bloodshed. By 
riding through what seemed certain death he saved 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 15 

the lives of 250 Union soldiers and a valuable con- 
voy of supplies. For all of which he was never rec- 
ognized or rewarded by the government, and he 
scorned the idea of asking for that which should have 
been given as doubly due, and he will go to his grave 
with bitterness of heart, toward a thankless govern- 
ment, which pensions deadbeats and frauds. 

Brother Emory died the Fourth of July, 1863, 
at my home in Indiana. He was on his way to Kansas 
to look for a new location. He left a widow and 
seven children. He was the most gifted In judgment 
and business ability of any of the family, could read 
the character of a man almost at sight, but was un- 
usually kind and generous, especially to those in dis- 
tress. 

The day of his death was a dark day at my home. 
William Thomas, who married my niece, Miriam A. 
Henly, died in the early morning, and he in the even- 
ing, and I was worn out and broken down with watch- 
ing and loss of sleep; and as I look back to that time 
I feel that a special Providence alone carried me 
through. 

I was born January 22, 1822, cx>nsequently was 
not four jeam old when my father died, yet I can 
remember his foiin and face, sometimes with, strik- 
ing vividness, and in my dreams am still a child as 
v\^hen he was alive. He ajid my mother little thought 



16 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

that mj memory was at that time taking impres- 
sions of words and deeds; many times in after 
years mother would be astonished at my re- 
citing events with unerring precision that happened 
when a mere infant in age; but dwelHng on this part 
of my life seems bordering on the supernatural, so I 
will only mention one other item here. I learned to 
read looking at the words as my sister would read in 
a book; learned the words before I knew how to speli 
the most simple ones, and the result was I never did 
learn tx) spell anything like ordinary people, and in 
our literary societies it was next to impossible for any 
but my immediate asso(iiates to decipher my compo- 
sitions. 



CHAPTER FIRST. 



Events of Early Life. 

My father was born near New Garden, Guilford 
county, X. C, in 1702, and died in 1826 in the house 
in which he was born, and on his birthday, October 
10th. His mother, Elizabeth (Vestal) Coffin, was left 
a widow with four small children, one daughter and 
three sons, who grew to man and womanhood under 
many privations common to the lot of the widow and 
the fatherless of that age of southern civilization. At, 
an early age my father entered the anti-slavery move- 
ment, and his ready, natural ability soon brought him 
to the front. When Benjamin Lundy visited North 
Cai'olina in 1816 he was among the first to join the 
Manumission Society organized by that celebrated 
man. In 1818 he was the only man who had the 
courage to attack the then domineering slave power in 
the South. It came about in this way. A young 
free negro, named Benjamin Benson, was kidnaped 
in the State of Delaware, and brought to Greensboro, 
where he was sold f/> a very wealthy and influential 
slave-ow^ner named Thompson. A slave owned by 

(17) 



18 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

General Hamilton learned the facts concerning Ben- 
jamin Benson, and gave the information to my father, 
who interviewed Benson, then wrote to Delaware, and 
got sufficient evidence to get out a writ for Thompson 
requiring him to produce Benson and show cause why 
he should not have his fi^eedom. The officer who 
served the writ gave opportunity for Thompson to 
conceal Benson, and on the hearing denied ever having 
such a negro in his possession. The case was dis- 
missed and that night Benson was run off secretly 
to Georgia and sold. This notorious outrage on law 
and justice caused much excitement and intensified 
the spirit of opposition to slavery. 

My father was now joined by Dr. George Swain 
and Enoch Macy, and determined to push the caso 
to the end. They wrote again to Delaware and en- 
listed the anti-slavery men there to the extent that 
the State Legislature made an appropriation of money 
for expense, and made my father and his two friends 
l^al agents to push the case, and sent a man to iden- 
tify Benjamin Benson. In the meantime, the slave 
of General Hamilton, known as Hamilton's Saul, had 
been secretly listening and learning all the plans of 
Thomj^son and the slave powder, which information 
was invaluable in the case. 

When all was ready, another writ was sei-ved, 
in which it was ordered that lienson should Ixr pi'o- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 19 

duoed in open court. This brought things to a crisis. 
Thompson had to go to Georgia, where the man to 
whom he had sold the negro made him pay $1600 
before he would give him up. At the trial Benson 
was mixed up with a score of negToes to test the man 
from Delaware, but he identified him at sight. The 
evidence was so conclusive that the negro was set at 
liberty at once, and he returned to his home and cor- 
responded with my father up to the time of his death. 

This case naturally placed my father in the front 
rank of anti-slavery men, and he was an object of 
hatred among the more violent and vindictive slave- 
holders. Seemingly, without being conscious of how 
it came about, he was expected to do all the danger- 
ous work, to take all the responsibility and leadership ; 
others were ready and mlling to share the cost, do all 
the business, fetch and carry, if he would be the leader 
in the hours of trial. 

In my History of Friends in North Carolina I ,^ ^-^ 
give the origin of the Underground Railroad, and will /^^^^T. 
not repeat it here, excepting to say, that father origi- ^ 

nated and operated the first of the kind in America, 
in 1819. His cousin, Levi Coffin, who in after years 
became famed as an Abolitionist, took his first les- 
sons under my father, and many were the secret con- 
ferences they held after night, never meeting in the 

2 



20 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

same place the seeond time, to prevent espionage or 
betrayal. 

A negro named John Dimery was freed by his 
master in the lower part of the State; he married a 
freed woman, who had been owned by a neighbor. 
They came up to New Gai*den for safety, where they 
lived in peace for several years, and liad seven chil- 
dren. The old master of John died; immediately 
two of his sons came secretly to Xew Garden on pre- 
tense of buying stock; they located John Dimery's 
house, stopped over night at a near neighbor's; some- 
time after midnight they slipped quietly out, went 
to the house, called Dimery out and pretended to have 
l>een hunting and were lost. Xo sooner was he out of 
the house than he was seized and a desperate struggle 
ensued; the wife, Aunt Sally, ran out, but was knocked 
down, almost senseless; then Dimery shouted to hi^ 
oldest daughter to run for Mr. Coffin, my father, 
which she did like a wild deer. Father had just step- 
ped out to get wood to start a fire; without stopping 
for coat or hat he ran at full speed, providentially 
meeting Isaac White, a special friend. He just said, 
^^Come," and they both ran like the wind. The kid- 
napers had finally overpowered Dimery and taken him 
to the neighbor's, bound securely. In spite of threats, 
Dimery told the neighbor that Mr. Coffin would soon 
be there and begged their protection. The kidnapers 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 21 

and neighbor weire ready to oome to blows, when 
father and Isaac White nislied in; then the scene 
changed; the kidnapers were told that tliey would 
be taken before the nearest magistrate and prosecuted 
for their crime. This brought them to a standstill, 
and while they were debating the case, the lady of the 
house had been quietly untying the rope, and before 
any one knew it Dimery sprang out and made for 
the woods;. the kidnapei-s rushed after him, calling a 
large dog and setting him after the fugitive, but 
when the dog came near, Dimery clapped his hands 
and hallooed as though there was game ahead; the 
dog went tearing into the woods, and the fugitive close 
after, when they both disappeared. Father and Isaac 
White now renewed their threats, of aiTest, which so 
alarnied the men that they soon mount-ed their horses 
and galloped out of the neighborhood and were seeii 
no more. John Dimery was started on the Under- 
ground Railroad that night and soon landed at Hich- 
mond, Indiana, where he worked and sent money +o 
his family for their support for two years, and then 
had them sent to him. 

There was mrvre of this kind of business done ai 
that period than in assisting- real fugitive slaves. In 
1772 the friends of North Carolina freed their slaves, 
as did many Methodists and other conscientious peo- 
ple. The number amounted to thousands thus lib- 



22 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

era ted, and it was frequently the case that heirs would 
try to re-enslave those freed people ; this constant har- 
assing and kidnaping finally di-ove thousands of the 
negroes across the Ohio river into free territory. The 
mountaineers in Virginia were so used to seeing ne- 
groes going westward that it wa^ less dangerous for 
fugitives to escape that way than through Kentucky. 

After my father's death many fugitives contin- 
ued to come to the old home, and my mother would 
advise and counsel with them as time and opportunity 
offered, until brother Alfred and I were old enough 
to take the post of danger our father occupied; but 
this is anticipating history, and we will go back to 
■earlier days. 

My mother died November 3, 1891. Soon after 
her death. Dr. Nereus Mendenhall of Guilford Col- 
lege, wrote a short aucconnt of her life for the ^'.Guil- 
ford Collegian,^' which was copied in "Ohristinn 
Worker'- for January 14, 1892, which may come in 
place here. 

"Alethea Coffin was born at Big Spring, two 
miles west of Greensboro, Guilford county, N". C, 
on the 16th of April, 1798. Her husband's name was 
Vestal Coffin; her marriage with him was on the 27th 
of November, 1817. In the fall of 1826 they were 
both sick, and up(m his death she was left with four 
small children, the oldest eight years old, the young- 




ALETHEA COFFIN. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 25 

est two. Greatly weakened by sickness and the 
shock given by her husband's death, the fall work not 
done, the winter clothing not prepared, com not gatli- 
ered, the prospect before her was, indeed, a gloomy 
one. Some of her children yet remember many a sad 
day of that winter; many a time of shivering by a 
small fire, the mother sick, the oldest boy hardly able 
to carry wood, the daughter not able to do much in the 
way of cooking, no wonder that sometimes they all 
cried until late at night. 

"It was in this dark winter that the Lord a.n- 
swered her prayers for help. Ever after she never 
doubted, never faltered, never stopped for any mis- 
fortune, failure in crops, loss of stock or betrayal of 
trust. She never hesit-ated to divide her scanty means 
with the poor and hc^meless; many a sick and homeless 
boy was taken in. washed, nursed and cared fox, 
clothed with the garments of her own children, whiie 
she washed and mended his, 

"Her own faith and trust in God were the means 
of drawing to her for advice those in darkness and 
discourageme^nt, especially the widows, the fatherless 
and the motherless. Her education was in advance 
of the women of her generation, and the severe school- 
ing of necessity made her a wonder of economy and 
business management, hence she was consulted by hei 
neighbors in making calculations in warping, striping, 



26 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

reeling and all the arts of cloth, making and house- 
hold matters; and to this advanced education and 
home ability, her children wei^ indebted for much of 
their education; they were started early in general 
reading; all had read the Bible through before they 
wer sixteen. 

''The nullification excitement in 1830 caused 
many of her neighbors to move to Indiana. She and 
her children entered into the spirit of the emigra- 
tion, and measures were taken to secui-e a home in this 
^Far West.' With her limited means it seemed a 
hopeless task to save $100 to pay for 80 acres of land. 
The matter was presented to the Lord in prayer; the 
answer was, ^Gro,' and by rigid economy $50 was saved 
in two years, and Job Cofiin (brother-in-law), fur- 
nished the other $50 on long time, so in 1833 in com- 
pany \\dth Elihu and Jane Coffin and Aunt Rhoda 
Gurley — she putting in a horse as her part of the out- 
fit — she started to Indiana. Among the mouutains 
everything was so grand and new, she and Rhoda 
Gurley walked more than half the time, preferring 
it to being jolted in the wagon over the rough stones. 
At Richmond, Ind., she boiTOwed a saddle, took her 
horse, and set out to find her old neighboi-s 100 miles 
away. Alone, following the roads and by-ways, she 
found her old friends settled at Spiceland, in Henry 
county. Walnut Ridge in Hancock, and in White lick, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 27 

in Hendricks comities, and tinallj reached lier old 
neighbor, Asahel Hnnt. He and other old neighbors 
turned out through the thick, tall forest, and soon 
found a lot of good land still vacant. Early nexi 
morning in a continuous rain, she set out for the 
Land Office ^at Orawforclsville, 25 miles further on. 
She entered the land, remained over night and the 
next day returned to Asahel Hunt's. Her joiu-ney 
was now accomplished, and she was the owner of a 
home in the free West. In the ride to Graw^forda- 
ville there were no roads, only a blazed horse path, 
with settlements sometimes five miles apart; yet the 
trip was made in safety with no fear of danger or 
accident, for she felt the presence of the Lord with 
her all the time. Resting and visiting a few days, 
she was ready to st-art on her long journey home. 

''On arriving at Richmond she found Elihu Cof- 
fin ready to return but anxious to buy a very fine, large 
hoi'se if there was any w^ay to get him home. She 
told him if he would get a good saddle she would ride 
the horse; this he did at once, and she rode all the dis- 
tance from Richmond, Ind., to 'New Grarden, N". C, 
over 500 miles. She enjoyed the ride and stood the 
trip better than in the wagon. When it rain-ed she 
put on a waterproof overcoat and was safe from storm 
and blast. It was springtime, and to the day of her 



28 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

death, that grand overland mountain ride was one 
of the bright spots in her memory. 

"She died on the land then purchased, and it was 
tlie only tract in Hendricks county that had not 
changed hands. The last tax receipt bore date a few 
days before her death in her own name. Her inten- 
tion was to move to Indiana in two or three years, but 
in the fall of 1833 at Xorth Carolina. Yearly Meeting 
she was appointed on the committee to consider and 
perfect a plan for New Garden Boarding-School, and 
becoming deeply interested in the school determined 
to stay and give her children some of the benefit of 
the school. Of this school she subsequently was ma- 
tron for some time, in which capacity her manage- 
ment was a model of carefulness and economy. After 
moving to Indiana in 1852, she was for nearly nine 
years assistant matron of Earlham College. This 
connection with the two colleges gave her a very large 
acquaintance, and at Earlham the children of the N'e^Y 
Garden Boarding-School pupils were often under hev 
care, and she would give them reminiscences of their 
parents, and tell more about them than they had ever 
known. 

"Though she attained a great age her hair did 
not turn grey, nor did her sight fail, as is usual ^\^th 
age. Up to ninety she could read ordinary print with- 
out glasses, and large print up to the time of her 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 29 

death. She conld not bear t(» he idle; if nothing else 
could be found for her tc^ do, she would get some wool 
or flax and sit down and spin thread and yam, and 
then knit it into stockings for presents to her grand- 
children. She would at other times take the prun- 
ing-sheai's a.nd go among tho fruits and grape vine?, 
or into the orchard, and take delight in trimming and 
pruning for hours at a time. Her long life as a far- 
mer made her an expert, at all kinds of work within 
her strengtli. 

''She was not a birthright member of the Society 
of Friends, but joined them soon after her marriage. 
She attended Sandy Spring Meeting till 1817, when 
she removed to New Garden. 

''About a year ago, when called upon by the His- 
torical Society of Henry and Wayue Counties, Ind., 
she was able to give the names of more than 300 fam- 
ilies that had moved from Guilford county to Indi- 
ana between 1805 and 1835. Did time and space 
permit, many interesting and thrilling incidents of 
her life might be dwelt upon ; as of the handkerchief 
given her in 1852, on her depajrt.ure for Indiana, as 
a keepsake by her friend Asenath Clark, which she 
sent to her son, Nathan H. Clark, with the message, 
'The two mothers will soon be together again.' Also 
of the photograph, hundreds of which have been 
called for^ and more still in demand, a photograph 



30 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

of herself sitting at work at her little spinning-wheel. 
Of the family reunion a year ago in which a gTeat^ 
great-granddaughter was presented to her by the 
child's grandmothea\ A grandmother presenting her 
grandchild to her grandmother, a rather impress! v-j 
scene. Again, of the discourse which in her 90th 
year she made to a large company of small children on 
Children's Day; when she stepped out before them, 
she drew from her pocket a primer alx)ut four inches 
square; holding it up she said: 'This is my first primer, 
bought in 1804;' then gave to the little folks a deeply 
interesting account of education from that day up to 
1890, the whole discourse a surprise, not only to 
others, but herself, for she was carried back to child- 
hood again, and looking along the life journey saw her- 
self, now old and worn with age, standing before tho 
little children and saw herself restored to childhood 
in them; but this sketch must come to a close. 

''Her greatest objection to moving West was a 
wish that her remains might repose in N^ew Garden 
burial ground beside those of her husband, mother 
and daughter. Her son, Addison, promised her that 
if practicable her wish should be complied with. She 
gently passed away on the 3d of November, 1891, and 
her son with filial love and true to his promise made 40 
yeai"s ago brought the remains and saw them deposited 
by those of her husband. The burial on the 5th was 
attended by the students and officers of Guilford Ool- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 31 

lege and her old neighbors who still survived. Tes- 
timonials as to the excellence of her character were 
given by Mary C. Woody and Rufus P. King (and 
Kerens Mendeiihall, added), and the latter part of the 
31st chapter of Proverbs was read as appropriate to 
the occasion." — Nereus Mendenhall, in Guilford Col- 
legian. 

In spite of hardship and privation, my sister and 
brother were strong and healthy, and we grew like 
other children, and mother's fund of knowledge 
helped to keep us interested and thus our minds were 
taken off the unpleasant struggle to make ends meet. 
We soon made conmion cause in all home interests, 
and resolved within our young hearts that we would 
make a living and one day be independent, not de- 
pendent ; and this resolve our favorite guardian. Uncle 
Job Coffin, always encouraged us in, and let no op- 
portunity slip to hre our zeal on that line of aspiration, 
and with his care, counsel and help we succeeded. 

As heretofore stated, my memory was a part of 
my inheritance, an inseparable part of myself, and in 
early infancy was active and gTew with my growth; 
but that other inheritance also manifested itself at 
an early date. At six yeai-s of age the tii'st clear, dis- 
tinctive manifestation came. I was alone in the or- 
chard, when suddenly I seemed surrounded by a soft, 
warm influence that seemed lifting me up in the arr, 



32 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

then all at once an infinite expanse opened to my eyes, 
so fnll of wonderful, and to my young mind awful 
things, that I was teiTified, and ran screaming to the 
house. Mother met me and at firet sight comprehend- 
ed the terrible reality. Second-sight had come upon 
me, and it filled her mth sadness and suffering, for 
she knew too well by the tribal tradition that all who 
inherited it went to an early grave, unless they had an 
iron constitution. From that hour life to me was 
full of hidden teiTor; I was too young to comprehend 
the situation; every effort was now made by the few 
who knew about this condition to arrest the further 
development, and I had a sore, sad life of it until T 
was twelve years old. 

This strange clairvoyant state came more vividly 
upon me in sleep; then there was no limit; space and 
distance vanished, and for a time I could not shut out 
the awful scene. One time, when eight years old, 
mother went to see a dear friend, ^aomi Stephens, 
who had just been left a A\adow, leaving us children 
at home. After playing outdoors until tired, we went 
in to the fire; my younger brother and I lay down on 
the floor and went to sleep. Suddenly a vision opened 
to my mind ; I saw mother sitting weeping by ^aomi 
Stephens, who was wringing her hands as if her heart 
would break. It was over two miles away, yet I saw 
every feature, every movement and gesture of both. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 33 

I sprang to my feot and started to run in a straight 
line to mother, and it was all my sister and brothei' 
conld do to overtake and liold me from running on, 
and the vision would not fade until mother returned 
and took me in her arms. That vision has never 
faded, it v\^as as I saw it; the two were sitting as I de- 
scribed at that very moment. 

In after yeai*s I took the bearing of the line 1 
started to run, and it was as unerring as a surveyor 
could run a line, and yet I had not seen the place. 
Efforts were now redoubled to watch me at all times, 
and Uncle Job was untiring in filling my mind and 
taking my attention with stories of hunting, fishing, 
pioneer life, and getting me interested in learning to 
shoot at a mark, etc., etc. Uncle Joseph Hubbard, 
then quite old, did much in telling stories of hunting 
and travel, and with my own intense desire to escape 
such fearful things, the visitations became less fre- 
quent, and ceased altogether in their first intensity, 
though there has not been a year of my life in which 
I did not feel the influence, in what some would call 
hmirs of inspiration; to-day it is called mind-readims, 
and at times when these clairvoyant visions would 
have come, a remarkable consciousness comes 
over me that gives the mind-reading ability; but 
enough of this; this materialistic age has no faith in 
anything that it does not know; yet with my experi- 



34 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ence I can understand what gaye rise to the belief in 
the supernatural, and the power to the seers in the ohl 
Runic times, that became liereditarT in the course 
of many centuries. I inherited the condition, or gift, 
or what it may be called; if it had been cultivated, it 
would bave increased, and could have been turned 
to good or evil. 

My first day at school was in the spring of 1828, 
and it was a. bitter day to me, for all seemed strange 
and unnatural; the result was I cried nearly all day, 
A girl, some older, Betsey Portis, took pity on me 
and took me under her care and protection, for which 
I thanked her ever after. She lived until a few weeks 
ago (October 15, 1894), and died in peace. There 
were thirty-two children at school that day, and but 
three are now li^dng, Elam Benbow, Phebe Ross, and 
myself. The larger number emigrated West, and I 
have met their children in every state and territory 
north of the Ohio and west of the Mississippi River. 

I could read in a little primer, and it was some 
days before the teacher, Lewis Hobbs, found I did 
not know the letters of the alphabet, and he had hard 
work to get them fixed in my mind as at all essential 
to reading. From that time on thTOUgh boyhood T 
attended school two to three months each year, and 
as much of the teaching at that time developed mem- 
ory more than thought, I had no difficulty in stand 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 35 

ing well to the front in all things but spelling; was 
always foot in that; other l>oys and girls felt safe from 
being foot the '^last day of school," for they knew 1 
would be there in my regular place. There was one 
branch I excelled in, that was geography; it w^as no 
trouble to locate and remember places and boundaries, 
and I early began reading histories in which I soon be- 
came interested, and have never grown w^eary up to 
this day. 

One time mother and a neighbor woman were 
talking on Scriptures and spoke of Caleb and Joshua 
as being the only men of six hundred thousand who 
reached the promised land; it so interested me that T 
began asking questions. Mother told me to read the 
Bible and I would find may things far more wonder- 
ful. I beg-an reading at once, and read every word 
dbefore the summer ended; though I could not pro- 
nounce half the names and many of the words cor- 
rectly, I got the substance clear and distinct, and that 
summer's reading was the foundation of my success 
in life, such as it has been. ,-,.•' 

The home life had its peculiar and special fea- 
tures; mother went out with her children to work on 
the farm in the day-time, and then all joined in the 
housew^ork at night, sometimes working till a late 
hour. Wlien frujt drying was in season we Would peel 
and cut. the fruit, at. night, and work in the fields in 



36 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the daj. Tli€ tii-st crop of com w€ cultivated our- 
selves, my bix>tiier held the plow, and I rode the horse; 
the horse knew as much about driving as I did, and 
more than one time I fell asleep and fell off. At nine 
years of age I began plowing alone, and did more or 
less of it for sixty yeare. In like manner necessity 
required me to leam all kinds of work at an early 
age. Thus in my youth, yea almost infancy, I par- 
took of the bitter lessons of life, for there seemed 
nothing ahead but hai-d labor; other boys of my ago 
who had fathers, could go hunting, fishing, swimming 
and enjoy other amusements, while with me it was 
work, work, work. At the end of forty years I was 
astonished and thankful to learn that those bitter les- 
sons were blessing's in disguise; for the schooling in 
childhood had prepared me to meet and overcome op- 
position, had made me an expert in many kinds of 
farm and mechanical labor, which gave me confi- 
dence and self-dependence, while my childhood asso- 
ciates, who had an easy time, were not prepare^l to 
meet the stern realities of everyday life, and many 
of them failed and went down in the struggle; though 
I remember those sore days of trial and heartache, and 
the bitterness is all gone, and a sweet memory now 
illuminates the clouds that hung over me then. 

In the latter part of the summer of 1835, an 
event occurred that had much to do with all my after 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 37 

life. 01(1 General Hamilton had died, and his slave, 
Solomon, or Saul, was sold to a slave dealer, Ike 
Weatherby, and taken to Southern Georgia and sold. 
It was he who had aided my father so much in secur- 
ing the freedom of Benjamin Benson, and he had also 
helped Cousin Levi Coffin in many similar cases. 
When Saur was taken south a heavy iron colar was 
ri\>eted around his neck, and he was chained in a coffle 
(a chain-gang of slaves). Saul w^as looked upon as a 
dangerous slave on account of his intelligence and 
judgment, so he was closely watched for a year by his 
new master, a.nd often chained at night. When the 
vigilance slackened he began planning his escape, and 
finally succeeded in eluding the surveillance of the 
overseer and driver. He had carefully noted the road 
a« he was taken south, had kept thie names of rivers 
and towns and many of the camps. When he escaped 
he had provision for a few days, so he pushed on each 
night Avith all his strength, and was making good 
headway when one day he was startled at the sound 
of bloodhounds, and he knew the danger at once. He 
was still strong and active, though past middle life, 
and was brave to a fault, so he armed himself with a 
good club and started to run in the hope of reaching 
a creek or river. After an hour's run he reached a 
large creek with steep banks, and too deep to wade, so 
he swam across and ran on again with some hope that 
3 



38 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the horseman in pursuit could not easily cross the 
creek, and he could have a fair fight with the hounds. 
It proved as he thought; the hounds came to the creek 
and swam across, but the horsemen in pursuit could 
not cross, so went some distance up stream. In the 
meantime, the hounds came upon him, but he had 
chosen his position on a large stump about four feet 
high, from which he defended himself with the en- 
ergv of despair. S<X)n he killed one of the three, 
but the other two were old in blood, and were both 
fierce and wary. One time they both assailed him 
at once, and he was nearly dragged to the ground, but 
one fell beneath a single blow, and the other was 
wounded. He was now becoming fearful that the 
horsemen would come up, so he determined to risk all 
in a desperate attempt, so he leaped from the stump 
and attacked the surviving dog; the brute seemed to 
understand it and also fought for life; for a few min- 
utes the conflict was savage and furious, but the dog 
soon lay dead. Saul was almost breathless, was badly 
torn and lacerated about the legs and left arm, but 
he had no time to lose, so started again toward a tan- 
gled thicket not far away, into which he rushed re- 
gardless of briars, thorns and bramble vines. In a 
short time the horn of the hoi*semen was heard call- 
ing the hounds; as their baying had ceased they sup- 
posed they had overtaken and killed their victim; after 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. «$« 

calling and hunting for some time they found the 
scene of conflict and the dead animals. Their furious 
cursing was heard by Saul in the midst of the thicket, 
where he was safe from further pursuit without 
hounds. 

As soon as twilight fell Saul came out the way 
he entered the thicket and took the back track to the 
creek, when he plunged into the water and swam and 
waded down stream several miles, for he feared a 
relay of hounds would be brought and the pursuit 
renewed. At last he landed and pushed on again; 
his lacerated limbs were very painful and swollen, and 
but for the bath in the creek, might have been dan- 
gerous. It is enough to say that weeks later he startled 
us by suddenly appearing at our house in a deplorable 
condition; his wounds were not all healed, but were 
frightful ulcerated sores; his clothes were in tatters, 
and he was almost famished with hunger. The sight 
was too much for me ; I found myself beyond the power 
of restraint. When the tears ceased to flow a new 
impulse seemed to fill my whole being, and then and 
there I "vowed eternal hate to Rome." In all my life 
that vow was kept amid sunshine or storm. 

When Saul's master returned from the pursuit 
he wrote immediately to Greensboro, giving notice of 
SauFs escape, and offering a large reward for his cap- 
ture; soon there was espionage in all parts of the 



40 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

county, and it was dangerous to assist him in any way ; 
so great was the danger that all shrank from it. In 
this hour of emergency I felt a call to action, and 
without question or hesitation resolved to take all risk, 
brave all danger and trust God for help. 

From that moment a new life seemed born with- 
in, and my young mind began its life effort. Saui 
was concealed and fed until his strength was restored ; 
then one moonlight night at midnight he gave the; 
signal of his presence and I joined him and started 
Jiim on the Underground Railroad. At parting he 
embraced me, with streaming eyes, saying, ^'God bless 
you forever for this,^' then disappeared in the shad- 
ows and was gone. 

In that hour it seemed to me the w^hole future 
of slavery was opened to my mind's eye, and inspira- 
tion entere<:l my heart that ever after sustained and 
guided me in all my contact and conflict with slavery. 
This act established my fitness for the post of dan- 
ger, from which I never shrank. My brother Alfred 
was as brave and determined, but his ability was in 
the direction of general manager, instead of conduc- 
tor, and soon we were in council with old men around 
many a midnight fire in the dark forests, laying plans, 
devising ways and means and essential preliminaries; 
even now I see the strong contrast between the beard- 
less bovs and the errav-headed men. Yes, and the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 41 

eagerness with which the old men woukl listen to uiy 
reports of success, in spite of danger and difficulty. 

Though my tendency to second sight had been 
measurably overcome, yet the spirit of the inheritance 
enabled me to read the faces and capacity of fugitives 
with almost unerring certainty. If we saw a fugi- 
tive had not the mind or judgment to imderstand the 
secret of the business, he or she was sent back to his 
or her master, for failure and recapture meant "'Geor 
gia and the rice swamps." I will say here that at 
no time or under no circumstance did we solicit or 
advise a slave to leave his master; that was no part of 
our business. Others did that, we only looked after 
those who came to us asking help. 

It would fill a large book to give the principal 
events connected with the Underground Railroad 
from ^orth Carolina from 1819 to 1852. Mother 
was familiar with and knew all that transpired up to 
the time brother and I filled father's place. One of 
the romantic features was the white slaves that came 
to us for help, and those put in our hands to be sent 
away by their father-masters; many of those whitft 
slaves grew to man and womanhood ignorant of theii 
parentage, or origin; others were only known by us 
after they crossed the Ohio River. Some revelations 
that could have been made would have been more 
than a seven-days' wonder, but a few years more, and 



42 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

all secrets will be sealed up forever in death, so far 
as this life is concerned. Sometimes in spite of facts, 
of faces and things, in thinking on this part of life, 
I seem to be living in a new world, walking among 
a new race of humanity. When I go back to the 
scenes of those eventful days, and look into the bright, 
kindly faces of the grandchildren of men who sixty 
years ago would have shot me down at sight if found 
on my secret mission, it fills me with emotions that 
cannot be expressed, and I thank God that my heart 
is full of love and kindness to those young lives, who 
are all unconscious of the events of the past. I walk 
about saying in my heart, thank God, thank God, 
thank God. 

About this period of my life another event trans- 
pired that was far-reaching in my memory, and was 
a severe test in after years. From 1832 to 1835 there 
was much discussion and excitement about the re- 
moval of the five Indian tribes from Georgia and Up- 
per ^NTorth Carolina. Soon after a '^treaty of re- 
moval" was agreed upon. John Koss and William 
Lewis, chiefs of the Cherokees, were deputed to go 
to Washington to settle the details of the cession of 
lands for other lands in the Indian Territory, etc., etc. 
The-se two chiefs came to Xew Garden to counsel with 
Friends, and get Jeremiah Hubbard, who was one- 
fourth Indian (Cherokee), to go with them to Wash- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 43 

ington. When thej came to New Garden they at- 
tended the regular meeting on the Sabbath; at its close 
the chiefs went out in the yard, and the people formed 
a half -circle in front; the object of their journey was 
explained and discussed at length. During the dis- 
cussion John Ross drew a paper from his pocket and 
read a paragraph, which was an expression of Presi- 
dent Andrew Jackson's opinions on the Indian ques- 
tion, he being hostile to all Indians. Dr. George 
Swain asked what paper it was. Ross replied, '^Thc 
National Intelligencer, published by Gales and Sea- 
ton." 

Jeremiah Hubbard was an eloquent and gifted 
minister among Friends, and was then in the prime 
of manhood, and personally acquainted with President 
Jackson. The council resulted in Jeremiah Hub- 
bard's going with the chiefs. He proved of great 
value to the Indians. Jackson recognized him at 
once, and gave him a kindly reception, and in the end 
granted all he asked, remarking to some politicians 
"That it was so eminently reasonable, and at the same 
time just." The most interesting, important and far- 
reaching portion of the treaty was the proviso that no 
spirituous liquors, or any intoxicating drink, should 
ever be imported, distilled or sold in the Ten"itor\, 
with, power to forever enforce the proviso. 

More than fifty years passed by. The Cherokee 



44 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tribe of Indians proclaimed to the world that they 
wanted all people everywhere who had Cherokee 
blood in them, to come home, establish their geneal- 
ogy and become citizens of their beautiful and fertile 
country. Among the many who presented them- 
selves to claim citizenship were the descendants and 
blood kin of Jeremiah Hubbard. In theii- hunt for 
evidence it developed that I was the only living person 
who could give an account of the visit of the two chiefs 
to ]^ew Grarden. I was called on to go to Tahlequa, 
the Cherokee capital, to give evidence before the coun- 
cil of tribal officei*s. The trip to and from Tahlequa, 
the strange combinations of events, the experience be- 
fore the council, and the week's sojourn among the 
Cherokees. was another ch)sing up of episodes in my 
sti'ange life. 

My memory was a sui-prise to the Cherokee Coun- 
cil, and they put it to a severe test; they tried to shake 
me up on the names of the two chiefs; they^ were 
brothel's and both named Ross, but I persisted in call- 
ing them John Ross and William Lewis. After all 
efforts to confuse my line of memory had failed, the 
President of the Council said, *'\Ye will have to ad- 
mit that you are certainly correct in your evidence, 
and I compliment you on y^our firmness in adhering 
to what you believe to be true ; the names of the chiefs 
were John and William Lewis Ross." I further 
learned that the Cherokee records confirmed everv 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 45 

essential fact I lia<l lieanl from l^nele Joseph Hub- 
bard, the father of Jeremiah, whose first wife was a 
half-blood Cherokee. 

As an item of history it may be proper to add that 
the Hubbard blood gained the right to citizenship, 
but not to a share in the annuity from the United 
States government. They have a very beautiful and 
prosperous colony at Afton in the northern part of 
the Cherokee nation or tiibe. 

There was a free negro named Arch Curry, liv- 
ing near our home, who died a few years after father. 
His widow^'s name was Vina; she was the washer- 
woman for the boarding-school for several years. She 
was shrewd and discerning, and would suffer her 
husband^s free papere to be stolen. This was done 
fifteen times to my knowledge. When an intelligent 
fugitive presented himself, who would fill Arch Cur- 
ry's standard, and there were one or more families of 
trusty emigrants going West, the free papers were 
stolen, and the fugitive sent through as a free man to 
liCvi Coffin, w^ho returned the papei*s in safety. This 
was done occasionally with other papers, but none 
were ever used like those of Arch Ctirry. 

Another secret trick my brother taught the 
slaves was to take dropsy, rheumatism, erysipelas, etc., 
and to appear as diseased or unsound, so they would 
not sell on the market. The dropsy was brought ot\ 



46 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

by bandaging the limbs until they were swollen and 
purple; it is true this was quite painful at first, buc 
the slaves were willing to suffer to escape being sold 
south. Rheumatism was produced by bandaging 
above and below the joint on arm or leg, and erysipe- 
las by rubbing any part of the body a few times with 
hot burdock root boiled down to a very strong tea; this 
latter was the most severe, but most deceptive and 
effectual. Strange as it may seem, these tricks were 
never detected nor divulged until after the war, when 
it caused quite a sensation in some families. 

Whether providential or natural, probably both, 
from the night I started my first passenger on the I^n- 
derground Railroad, my growth in body, strength and 
activity was very remarkable. At the age of sixteen 
I weighed 162 pounds, and have never varied ten 
pounds since, excepting in long sickness. Ever after 
that my poAvers of endurance and swiftness on foot 
were my distinctive characteristics; I could also staud 
long privations of sleep and rest, which fitted me more 
and more for my post of danger. 

The establishing and opening of New Garden 
Boarding-School opened a new world not alone to me, 
but to all my young associates. All the preliminary 
arrangements, the begiuning of the work, the sknv 
progress and final completion of the building was 1o 
us a source of deep and lively interest; it opened up 



OP ADDISON COPFIN. 



47 



to us a new field of imaginations, aspiration and ambi- 
tion. Though the circle of our lives had been very 
small, we could unders^tand that the school could and 
would have a great influence upon our future lives, 
and when the school was opened the first day of Sep- 
tember, 1837, we all felt the inspiring influence; imag- 
ined in our minds that we too would one day be in- 
mates of the institution, and then enter on a higher 
and grander life, and the larger portion did live to 
attend at least one session, but we had to learn that 
life was still intensely real. 

I entered the school midwinter of 1841, and was 
there three months, until the spring term of 1842. It 
was, indeed, a new life to me, and my mind was so 
hungry for light and knowledge, that I studied as 
a half-famished man devours food; all my time was 
spent in studying and reading, discussing and specu- 
lating. In figures and algebra I was second grade, 
but geography, chemistry, philosophy, astronomy, 
surveying, geometry, mensuration, construction, me- 
chanics, etc., etc., it required little effort to master. 
Brother Alfred and I were the first to study and finish 
Burritt's ''Geography of the Heavens," though we 
had no help in starting; we soon obtained a thorough 
knowledge of the system, often staying out until mid- 
night, tracing the constellations and naming the prin- 



48 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

cipal stai's, and we never lost our interest in this sub- 
lime study. 

After leaving the school, the balance of 1842 
and the early part of 1843 was spent at home on the 
farm. My younger brother had arranged to manage 
the farm and go to school at the same time, and T 
worked diligently to get everything in good shape for 
him, and made especial effort in repairing fences and 
building new ones. All the time, niffht and day, I 
was thinking and planning my future in the great un- 
known world, for with the exception of one direction, 
I ]iad not been more than twenty miles from homo, 
and consequently my territorial knowledge was very 
limited. The life of anxiety and extreme danger 1 
was leading was rendering me nervous, excitable and 
suspicious of all my surroundings; there was a con- 
stant sense of danger resting on my heart, a presenti- 
ment of impending peril, that made it clear to my 
mind that a change must be made; this, with my life- 
long desire for travel, made it a matter of serious 
thought. 

During the winter I formulated a program for a 
part of the coming year, namely, to go to Indiana, 
spend the remainder of 1843 in that State among rel- 
atives and friends; then in 1844 join Col. Fremont's 
exploring expedition and go with him until he 
reached the Pacific coast, and from there go to Ore- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 49 

gon, and if satisfied with the country, make that my 
futnre liome, where 1 would he forever beyond the 
influence of slavery, and possibly spend the rest of 
my life in peace; besides, Oregon had a peculiar fasci- 
nation for me. I had purchased Washington Irving's 
work entitled ^^Astoria," or "The History of the Free 
Trade," in which was related all the adventures, tri- 
als, and disaster of John Jacob Astor's attempt to 
colonize Oregon in 1812 to 1814. I had also read 
the '^^arratives of Captains Clark and Lewis' Explor- 
ing Expedition in 1804 to 1806/' "Gosses Journal," 
"Greely's Adventures," etc., etc. 

A special friend, George Bow^man, who had bf^en 
to Indiana before, was expecting to go again in May, 
and to go on foot; this met my ideal, so preparation 
was made for my departure. Although a moment- 
ous event to the family as well as to me, the prepara- 
tion consisted in making a good suit of home-made 
clothes, a few extra undergarments, a good pair of 
shoes and hat, all home production, except the hat. 
The clothes were put in a little knapsack made of cot 
ton drilling, with straps so as to hang on the back. 
This, with thirty-seven dollars and fifty cents, was my 
outfit and fortune. 



SECOND CHAPTER 



First Year of Travel. 



Trip to Indiana — Crossing tlie mountains — First 
steamboat ride from Charlestown to Cincinnati — 
Seeing the lii*st large city — Walking back into 
Ohio, and then to Richmond, Indiana — First Im- 
pressions — Attending first x\bolition convention. 
— Going to and stopping at Spiceland — Trip to 
State Abolition convention in Grant county — 
Return to Richmond, and Indiana Yearly Meet- 
ing — Giving to Bloomfield on the Wabash — 
Winter school — Going to New Orleans on a flat- 
boat in the spring of 1844 — Return to Indiana - - 
Life program broken up — Return to North Car- 
olina in the fall. 

On the morning of May 3d, 1843, I stepped 
out of my home, with a heart full almost to bursting, 
with a storm of contending emotions, which I have 
never been able to describe. My traveling compan- 
ion was a man of superior ability, kind hearted, 
(50) 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. 51 

thouglitfiil and prudent, yet withal a jovial, enter- 
t-aining chara(iter. lie at once saw my pent-up emo- 
tions and kindly, but wisely, diverted me away from 
my^lf by initiating me into the art of traveling, and 
the reality, as well as the wonder and beauty, that 
lay in the land to which we were going. The first 
day and night wa:^ a sore trial with me; the second 
day we came in full view of the Blue Ridge Moun- 
tains, w^hich were so wonderful and new that the in- 
tensity of my feelings was somewhat relaxed, and the 
third day I began to let go of home emotions and en- 
ter into the new world of beautiful, wild mountain 
scenery that lay before and around me. My com- 
panion, with his kind discernment, still led me on and 
out of myself, until he had me wholly absorbed witli 
mountains, the mountaineei-s and our interesting jour- 
ney. We took the Blue Mountain route as better j 
suited to horsemen and footmen, than to loaded wag- : 
ons. In crossing Peter's Mountain we left the road 
and climbed to the highest summit, from which there 
is one of the finest mountain scenes in the world. 1 
have been to the place since that eventful trip, I have 
also been in every state, territory, province and coun- 
ty on the continent, and visited every nation in Eu- 
rope, and yet can say that scene from Peter's Moun 
tain, in West Virginia, is one of the most beautiful 
and sublime that I have ever seen, lliere are many 



52 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

more fearful ajid terrible, many more sublimely loiie 
and desolate, but tliey lack the sublimity of beauty. 

We also passed through the gorge of Xew River, 
known as Xew River cliffs, which compares well with 
anything of the kind in any part of Europe. We 
crossed the Kanawha River at the falls, and went 
down on the east side to the celebrated salt work- at 
Molden, twelve miles above Charlestown. 

Though 1 have seen many new and interesting 
places since 1843, that trip has not lost its fresh- 
ness, nor its events faded from recollection. There 
w^ere 'many wayside incidents that were interesting 
and amusing. It was bright, spring Aveather, very 
pleasant for walking, we were stout and healthy, and 
oft'Cn indulged in fording creeks and rivers instead of 
ferrying; we would pull off shoes and stockings, coal 
and vest, and hold them above water and cross the 
swift streams, enjoying the cool bath and the excite- 
ment of stemming the swift current and stumbling 
over the sticks and stones on the bottom ; a brisk walk 
in the sun would soon dry our clothes, and we would 
push on with light hearts and nimble feet. Forty 
miles per day was our regular day's walk. It was ex- 
ceedingly interesting to stop over night with the moun- 
taineers, and we often talked until a late hour with 
them. George Bowman was an old school teacher, 
with pleasing and Avinning address, and could charu) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 53 

the cliildren and young folks with his anecdotes and 
stories, while I was somewhat speculative and knew 
how to antagonize their opinions and prejudices in '^ 
way to get up a discussion or argument. Many times 
we were not charged for our night's lodging, our host 
saying we had more than paid our bills in talk, and 
invited us to come again. This experience and lesson 
in talking my way through was not lost on me, but 
has been improved on up to this date, and I shall 
ever give George Bowman credit and gratitude for the 
lesson learned in my first start out in life. We would 
sometimes become so interested in the grand scenery, 
the geologic fonnations, the vast upheavals and dis- 
placement of the rock strata that we would forget all 
about time and distance, and find ourselves at the 
close of the day mthout seeming to have been con- 
scious of the day's walk. 

At Charlestown we found a steamboat ready to 
start for Cincinnati; and my curiosity was wrought 
up to such a point that I wanted to take a ride. Tt 
would take me out of my route and make more walk- 
ing in the end, but w^ould not discommode my friend; 
so to my intense delight we went aboard. T had 
never seen anything of the kind, and was worse than 
an eager child, because I anticipated and could un- 
derstand more. I was soon running, climbing, 
scrambling and aisking questions, much to the amufle- 
4 



54. LIFE AND TRAVELS 

meet of the crew, and old river men, yet my unre 
strained eagerness, and simplicity soon won the good 
will of all on board. AVhen night came there was no' 
sleep for me, the night scenes and work was as inter- 
esting as those of the day, so my excitement knew no 
stop until we landed at Cincinnati ; and there I stepped 
off into a still greater wonder, it was the fii*st city I 
had ever seen; its rush and roar, and the crowds that 
thronged some of the principal streets was perfectly 
bewildering. The hundred steamboats moored at the 
landing, and in motion was astounding to my bewail - 
dered senses; the immense piles of merchandise and 
products of the country, the thousands of pork bar- 
rels in sight and boat loads of bulk meat were almost 
past belief to me. My friend had been to the city 
before and was much amused at my whole perform- 
ance and staring about, but he determined to spend 
an extra day in showing me the Queen City, as it was 
called, which was adding to my already over-charged 
head almost more than it could hold; but under his 
guidance and judgment I came out safe, but w^ell nigli 
exhausted in body and mind. 

At Cincinnati I parted from my friend for a time, 
he going direct to Greensboro, Henry County, Ind., 
where his mother and two brothers lived. I started 
northeast into Ohio to find friends and relatives, who 
lived there. Mv walk of one hundred miles was ih 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 55 

vain, for my relatives had moved to western Indiana, 
where I afterwards found them; but in this walk, new 
revelations canie to me at every turn. Many settle- 
ments had been made in thirty years, and many beau- 
tiful fanns had been opened in the vast forest, the 
fields were clear of trees and stumps, and were green 
with grass and grain, presenting a picture of bright 
home life in such striking contrast wdth the old wasted 
sedge fields and gullies of the slave states, that it 
seemed like walking in fairy land, and gave promise 
of what it now^ is. I remember well as I walked along 
the road between Dayton and Eaton among beautiful 
farms, bright happy homes, amidst life and activity, 
that the sad tears would fall that in the midst of such 
a scene I was a homeless, wandering boy, wholly with- 
out knowledge of the spirit that seemed to animate 
the people among whom 1 was moving: but while my 
tears were falling I made another resolve, to have a 
home somewhere at sometime like those around me, 
and forty years from that time I had a home as bright 
and green as they, and from the depths of my hear) 
thanked the Lord for strength to make it so. 

T arrived in sight of Richmond, Ind., near sun- 
dowm tired, dusty, and worn, but the sight seemed to 
reanimate my ^veary body. '^Richmond, Indiana," I 
had been taught from childhood, was the great center 
of Carolina emigration, and the Jerusalem of Quaker- 



56 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ism for all the northwest, and at last I had lived to 
see it in all its quiet sunset beauty. I walked with a 
light step down into the town and put up for the night 
at a Carolina Hotel. Next morning early I was out 
inquiring for relatives and fnends, and soon found 
them; they gave me a warm shake of the hand and a 
kindly welcome to their home for my father and 
mother's sake, in every instance they referred to my 
f athei'^s fame as a manumissionist, and frequently said, 
^'We need him so much now." 

Sometimes T was kept talking all day and until 
a late hour at night, rehearsing the adventures of the 
UndergTOund^ Railroad, and the present situation of 
the south ; and I began to learn, and to take note of the 
location of my father's co-workers in the past; after 
.spending a week around Richmond, I hastened on ro 
IS'ewport, now more celebrated than Richmond. There 
had been a separation in Indiana Yearly Meeting of 
Friends, about one year before, on the subject of abol- 
ishing slavery and the Anti-slavery, or Abolition 
Yearly Meeting was established at I^ew}x>rt; and be- 
i^ides that town had become the headquarters of all 
the Underground Railroads, with Levi Coffin as pres- 
ident, hence my anxiety to reach that point, and it was 
with a swelling heart that I entered the town and 
found the depot. The reception given me by Cousin 
Levi Coffin and wife was as though a long absent son 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 57 

had returned Kome to see fatiier arid mother, and for 
many days it was a feast of souls. I could give the 
situation at the old home, and in turn take new les- 
sons in the new life and surroundings, for all, all was 
new. I was kindly received by all classes, and by 
both the anti-slavery and pro-slavery part of the people, 
for it was a time of intense excitement, both in church 
and state, though the anti-slavery party was in the polit- 
ical minority, they more than made it up in energy 
and ability, they were largely Nantucket emigrants 
from North Carolina, and the older ones were manu- 
missionists from the C/arolina scho<:>l of Benjamin 
Lundy, and being whale fishermen in the past, they 
were now fishers of men, and it was exceedingly inter- 
esting to hear the contending, (]el>ating, declaming, 
denouncing, \dlifying, swearing, and vulgarity that 
filled the community. It was still not uncommon foi' 
abolition speakers to be mobbed and abused; even 
ladies were grossly insulted by the ruffian pro-slavery 
element: egging speakers was common. 

Even to-day I look back to my first introduction 
into Hoosier politics with bewilderino- astonishment. 
The pro-slavery portion of the community treated me 
kindly, and seeme<l anxious to hear my st^tement^^ of 
the spirit of the slave power in the south. One pomt, 
that T could always get the better of them, was my 
abilitv to give their Carolina genealoi>v, which many 



58 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

times put them to the blush by contrast. It was al- 
most universal for ministers of the gosj^el to run into 
the subject of slavery in all their sermons ; neighbors 
would stop work and argue pro and con across the 
fence; people traveling along the road would stop and 
argue the point; at mills, stores, shops, everywhere it 
was abolition, pro-slavery, nigger, amalgamation, nig- 
ger wives, and all other such words were fully indulge<I 
m. Beside all this jx>litical turmoil there were a scor; 
of isms and ologies proclaimed abroad; mesmerism, 
Fourierism, phrenology, non-resistance, Grahamism, 
etc., etc. The whole country was like a huge pot in a 
furious state of boiling frothing over; and it would 
have taken more than human sagacity to have fore- 
seen the final or even probable end. Yet violent agi- 
tation did not prevent the steady gi-owth and develop- 
ment of the country, which was rapidly recovering 
from the panic of 1837 to 1839, everywhere new fields 
were beins: cleared, new houses built, large commo- 
dious bams were erected, orchards were being planted, 
good roads were being constructed from the interior 
to the Ohio and Wabash rivers. Chicago was begin- 
ning to be known as a place of trade, the Wabash and 
Erie canal was building, and when compared with 
I^orth Carolina, Virginia and Kentucky, what I saw 
was truly a wonderland to me, and I could feel new 
thoughts, new ideas, new aspirations entering my soul 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 59 

and opening up to me, a new life. I was, indeed, away 
from slavery, but not from its agitation and vehement 
discussion. 

Making Levi Coffin's home my stopping place 1 
visited at least lifty of the old manumissionists, and 
enjoyed the kindlv hospitalitv. and took in new lessons 
of Hoosier life ; with the Whig and pro-slavery portion 
of the community, I was a welcome visitor for I could 
lead out on new lines of argument, and interest them 
in my Underground Kailroad experience in spite of 
their violent prejudices. 

On the second day of June, 1843, there was to be 
an abolition convention held at Dalton, a little villago 
in the northwest comer of Wayne County, and I was 
invited to go. In company with Levi Coffin, William 
Starbuck, Daniel Pucket and Dr. Henry Way, 1 
started on the interesting trip, listening with eager at- 
tention to the conversation of those stanch representa- 
tives of the coming revolution. When we reached 
the convention I was pleased with its make-up, there 
were about two hundred people assembled from the 
neighboring counties, all substantial looking men and 
women, four-fifths of them Carolinians and of Caro- 
lina descent, and over half bore l^antucket names, as 
Coffin, Gardner, Worth, Starbuck, Folgier, Macy, 
Swain, Hussey, etc., etc., and all had a look of deep, 
unflinching pui*pose in their eyes. To my surprise the 



60 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

subjec'te discussed were almost identical with those of 
the mannmissionists in N^orth Carolina twenty years 
before, and some of the speakers when young men had 
discussed them in the south. "Immediate and Un- 
conditioned Emancipation of Slaves'' was the burden 
of all discussion, and the watch-word was "Free 
thought, free speech, free soil, free labor, and free 
men." Some of the discourses were grand and in- 
spiring, and the few Pro-slavery Whigs in attendance 
sat in silent thoughtfulness, and at times mnced un- 
der the seething denunciation of northern freemen 
affiliating with southern slave-holders. At the end 
of three days the convention closed, and all went home 
strengthened and edified. 

From Dalton I went to the town of Milton to 
some neighl)ore, who emigrated a few years before, 
and to see some special friends of my parents. While 
walking through the thick forest on the way, I met 
my friend, George Bowman, an unexpected, but glad 
meeting to both; he was ^^siting friends in that part, 
and turned out and went my way, and we made \dsits 
together for two days. From Milton my steps were 
turned toward? Spiceland in Henrs^ County, where I 
found Louviea AVhite, the widow of Isaac White, who 
ran with my father to rescue John Dimery from th(3 
kidnappers; my mother could not have given me a 
warmer welcome than she did, and I felt that I was 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 61 

safe from danger. T was now in one of the most in- 
teresting anti-slavery neighbor}ic»o(ls in that part of 
the state ; it was largely made up of old neighbors and 
friends from New Garden, N. C. : Whites, Unthank, 
Hiatt, Stanley, Macy, Gordon, Meredith, etc., etc., 
and everywhere I had a glad, kindly reception; I was 
admitted into homes, family circles and kindly friend- 
ship. In a Aveek, or ten days, an old neighbor, Eli 
Unthank, was going to Cincinnati with a four-horse- 
team of ])roduce and I was given the chance to go 
with him; this I was very anxious to do, as it would 
give me another lesson in Hoosier life. Eli Unthank 
had been a teamster in North Carolina, and was a vet- 
eran in the business. I was keenly alive to all that 
passed on this trip of 100 miles, and had another op- 
portunity of seeing the Queen City, and the bustli} 
of its every day life. 

While in the city I found John Thomas Moore, 
who was huckstering produce sent him from near 
Cambridge City, Ind. He and I had grown up to- 
gether and were considered tolerably steady in some 
ways, but we yielded to an o'ermastering temptation 
and stole away one night and went to a theater, a thing 
we had been taught was very wicked, so we felt giiilty 
when we got up next morning, and tried to think u]> 
many mitigating excuses to ease our guilty con- 
sciences. But the memory of the scenes enacted that 
ni^ht are as bright to-day as when I saw them }»er- 



62 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

formed. lu this connection I will say that I was sat- 
isfied almost for life with theaters, in all my travels 
never attended any more excepting once in New 
Orleans, and once in San Francisco. 

On the i-^tum trip we stopped one evening to 
camp as usual as I thought, but I noticed my old vet- 
eran fed and rubbed the horses with extra care, and 
prepared an extra supper; and about the usual time 
he told me to turn in. and rest, I did so and was soon 
sleeping soundly; how long after I could not tell, a 
violent shaking suddenly aroused me, and I realized 
the wagon was in motion; looking out in alarm I saw 
the old teamster in the saddle driving steadily along 
the road, and a long log causeway had shaken me up ; 
it was bright moonlight, and taking in the situation, I 
lay down and knew no more until about daylight, I 
was called to get up and have breakfast ; we got back 
to Spioelaud that evening, and I was asked, ''How 
many nights did Eli drive all night ^" for it was his 
custom to do that on the return trip. 

To my surprise a two months' school had been 
made up for me during my absence. I entered on 
my duties ; for here was another opportunity for me t6 
learn, as' well as the children ; for during the time T 
learned much of the spirit of the young people ; and to 
some extent entere<i into their social hopes and fears, 
loves and antipathies, prospects and aspirations. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 63 

Though, peculiar, untrained, odd and awkward, yet 
my clairvoyant make-up enabled me to see and leani 
as much or more of them, as they saw of me; friend- 
ships f oi*med during those pleasant, happy days remain 
wai*ni and fresh to-day, lapse of time has not changed 
them. While teaching I made my home with Wil- 
liam and Rebecca Unthank, who were friends and 
neighbors of my parents. He saw that I needed 
parental cai*e and took me in, yes, into their kind and 
happy family, which deed of kindness will be amoug 
the last things I shall forget. 

Four miles from Spiceland was Greensboro, lit- 
tle less notorious than Newport. One of the marked 
characters of that generation, Seth Hinshaw^, lived in 
the town; he was a man of great power of mind and 
unyielding determination, once satisfied that he was 
right, no human being could change him. He wa.^ 
an enthusiastic advocate of abstaining from the use 
of slave grown products, and had a sitore in which 
free labor goods were sold; when customers complained 
at his prices being above the ordinary, he would say, 
^'That will test thy conscience, whether it is worth any- 
thing or not.'' The free labor goods were all a frac- 
tion higher than slave; but Brother Hinshaw was tol- 
erably well patronized. His house was the meeting 
place of all grades of reformers, or setters forth of 
new doctrines — Mesmerism, Grahamism, Spiritual- 



64 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ism, Socialism or Foiirierism, etc., etc., beside being 
headquarters for all abolition speakers and lecturers. 
When the now celebrated Frederick Douglass first 
visited Indiana in 1843,. Seth Hinshaw defied public 
opinion and prejudice, took Douglass home with him 
and treate<:l him as a white man,, and in the end put 
his neighbors to shame. Such a character had a pow- 
erful influence in and on the community, and as a re- 
sult there was no place where the abolition sentiment 
was deeper, or more firmly seated, for there was good 
soil in which to sow seed, the town and surrounding 
country were settled Vvy North Carolinians. 

I made frequent A^sits to Greensboro and through 
the surrounding country, traveling on foot, much 
muddy road could be avoided and distance saved by 
going from point to point through the tall forests, 
which still covered more than half the country, and 
in mid-summe" were delightful and cool; then, as at 
this day, I always had a small magnetic needle to guide 
me in all my wanderings. 

At the close of my school I joined a party of six 
young people who were going to an abolition state con- 
vention at the place where Jonesboro, in Grant Countv, 
now stands, about three days' journey from Spiceland, 
part of the route being through an almost new country ; 
there were often several miles drive through the forest 
without a house, and over very stumpy roads. W':' 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 65 

were in a good farm wagon, drawn by two strong horses 
with a skillful driver, making altogetlier an interest- 
ing and romantic trip. One night we stopped at a 
large log house; on entering I was astonished and 
greatly pleased to find the widow of Emsley George, 
an old neighbor to my mother; they had moved west 
several years before, and 1 did not expect to meet 
them again. The widow and 1 sat up until a late hour 
telling the history of the old neighbors during the in- 
tervening years, and next morning she said I paid the 
bill for all the company with talk. 

The conventi(m was very interesting to me. There 
I saw two or three hundred men and women, many 
of whom had come a hundred miles over the rougii 
roads, through the dark forests in a hot sun, with no 
prospect of compensation, and with but little hop© for 
anything in the near future but misrepresentation, 
abuse, slander, contempt and possibly personal vio- 
lence, yet they were there to discuss the constant 
growth and aggressions of the slave power, and, if pos- 
sible, to arouse their fellow countrymen to a realiza- 
tion of the danger there was to the life of the nation. 
There were two prominent al>olitionists from Massa- 
chusetts, and Frederick Douglass, the freed slave, who 
was the center of attraction. Even in his beginning his 
hidden might was discernible to my mind and plainly 
foreshadowed what a power he was destined to be in 



66 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tiie nation. He did not know the hidden lire that 
needed but an awakening hour to set it burning in his 
heart. 

During the discussions in the convention tho 
declaration of James G. Bumey was repeated in con- 
nection with the future of slavery, ''Slaver}^ was in- 
stituted by violence, is maintained by violence, and 
will die by violence." Several speakers did not ap- 
prove of the declaration, and when it was embodied in 
a resolution it was voted out; then an amendment was 
offered, so as to read — ''and if not peaceably abolished 
will die by violence," this was carried by a unanimous 
vote. The whole procedure of the convention was a 
revelation to me and I was learning beyond my ability 
to store away in my memorv^, which resulted in neiwous 
prostration, and I had to remain in the neighborhood 
several days after the close, and my young compan- 
ions reluctantly left me behind and returned home. 
This was providential, otherwise, I should have gone 
with Frederick Douglass to Pendleton, a town twenty 
miles northeast of Indianapolis, where he was booked 
to speak, and where one of the most exciting, disgi^ace- 
ful, brutal, revolutionizing mobs took place that ever 
occurred in Indiana. 

The public speaking was held in the open air, q 
slight platform was raised for the speakers and for the 
elderly ladies. Soon after Frederick Douglass began 



OF ADDISQN COFFIN. 67 

to sjx'ak, a half dniiiken mob of several hundred bnital 
men and boys came on the ground armed with com 
cutters, clubs and stones, and began swearing, shout- 
ing and using foul mouthed language. As soon as 
the stone-throwing began, the men in the audience 
hastily surrounded the women, to protect them from 
the missiles; but the mob rushed upon them like 
demons, knocked many down, and rudely pushed 
women over and backw^ards, and in one case, brutally 
kicked. Frederick Douglass was the object of their 
great-est fury, he was defended for a time, but his 
friends w^ere overpowered, and he attempted to save 
himself by flight, but was pursued by howling devils, 
for eighty or one hundred rods, then knocked down, 
beaten and left for dead. Some young men who were 
there, afterwards went through the war of the rebel- 
lion, and they say thev never saw in all the war a more 
brutal, murderous scene in any battle anywhere. 
There w^ere many seriously hurt; many bore the marks 
of their wounds for life. The news of this outrage 
spread like wildfire over Indiana, Ohio, Illinois and 
Michigan, and aroused a spirit of indignation among 
all honorable people and caused hundreds to join nl 
once the abolition party. 

Was it Providential I was left at Greensboro? 
I am at least thankful I did not see the sight. 

It was now the fall of the year, and Indiana Year • 



68 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Ij Meeting of Friends held at Richmond was near at 
hand, so my stej>s were turned in that direction, the 
journey was through new counivj, much of it thinly 
settled, but full of interest. One place especially had 
then and afterwai-ds much interest to me. It was an 
ash swamp two and a half miles across and several long; 
there was a causeway made of split logs, and poles 
across it straight as a line, a person standing at either 
end could see across as through a tunnel. In the 
swamp the timber grew so thick that it looked dark 
and forbidding and j>art of the year was covered with 
water. Thirty years later I passed that way again, 
the swamp was gone, and in its place were beautiful 
farms, and homes, a country not to be excelled for 
beauty in the state. The land had been ditched and 
drained, it wsls so fertile that everv square rod had been 
cleared and was under cultivation, to me it seemed like 
magic, and it was hard to realize the marvelous change, 
but the old log hotel was still standing, with an un- 
broken record, and it was a reality. 

Indiana Yearly meeting was associated with the 
memories of all my life, and was the embodiment of 
all that was great and good, the larger portion of my 
relatives were amone* its members, more than half 
the people I had ever known in life had removed and 
settled in its limits, besides its membership was scat- 
tered through Ohio, Indiana, Illinals, Michigan and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. by 

Iowa and at its annual gatherings there were people 
from the extremes of six to eight hiinch*ed miles apart, 
many of them making the journey on horseback; 
women oftentimes rode one hundred miles on horses 
and thought it no hardship. AVith all this on my mind 
it was little wonder that I expected it to be one of en- 
during way marks in my future, and when the thou- 
sands assembled on the public days my ideal was fully 
realized. 

During the business sessions I watched with ob- 
serving interest the spint which animated the vast 
audience. There was splendid talent, f ai-seeing judg- 
ment, with high intellectual ability stamped upon the 
faces of many present, but the greater number, though 
above the average of their generation, were not above 
the influence of human passion, human prejudice and 
preference. It was evident that the meeting was still 
agitated by the effects of the separation, that had taken 
place one year before, when a large number of the 
more sanguine abolitionists revolted from the pro- 
slavery element as they characterized them and set up 
an "Anti-slavery Yearly Meeting," at I^ewport. For 
four days I attended the sessions, and watched, saw, 
heard, felt and read the minds of the prominent actor<=, 
and stowed in memory enough for a small history. 
No one for a moment dreamed that the awkward Caro- 
lina boy in his home-spun clothes was reading and re- 

5 



70 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

meinbering eveiything that was said, done and in some 
cases thought. 

One of the hundreds of incidents of life was con- 
nected with my attendance at the Yearly Meeting. 
While stopping at Spiceland the summer before, there 
oame several young people from Flat Rock east of 
there to attend Spiceland Quarterly Meeting; they 
stopped at Uncle William Unthank's Sabbath after- 
noon. They were of the high toned, wealthier class, 
well dresvsed and very nice looking, Init woe to me with 
my home-spun clothes and home-made shoes, etc. Thr; 
youngsters from Flat Rock made life bitter for me 
that day with their fun and heartless jokes, rough 
sport; making a virtue of neceSvsity I did not resent or 
retort, though it was very galling to my nature. I 
took, however, a lasting imprass of their featurf^'^, 
forms, words, and gestures and stored it up in my mem- 
ory. At Yearly Meeting I met part of them again and 
received similar treatment, but it was less trying. 
Twenty years from that time the leader of that Flat 
Rock party drove up to my house in a one horse hack 
containing tin troughing for houses, which he sold for 
his emplover; he was threadbare and looked dejected 
At first sight, all the memory of the past came to mind 
like a burning fire, but it passed in a moment, and when 
I took him by the hand, it was with difficulty the tears 
of sorrow and sympathy were restrained, and I thanked 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. 71 

the Lord for putting it in my heart to forgive the past 
and return kindness for unkindness. Misfortune fol- 
lowed that man through life, and he died poor and 
afflicted, but it was a lesson not to be forgotten to me 
and mine. 

After attending three days of business sessions 
at Richmond, I went to Newport and attended two 
days of the Anti-slavery Yearly Meeting to see and 
learn its leading spirit, and, as at Richmond, was alive 
to all that transpired. Though in the midst of con- 
genial spirits and old friends, it was apparent to my 
mind that the anti-slavery friends though in the right 
and full of enthusiasm had made a serious mistake in 
separating from the pro-slavery Friends. Thoy had 
mthdrawn all the leaven from the body that needed 
leavening, and had a surfeit where little was needed. 
They should have remained with the church and suf 
fered, prayed, pleaded and reasoned on until the whole 
lump was leavened. All parties saw this in a few 
years, and were again united, but the labor of half q 
generation was lost in the unhappy separation. Among 
the most noted was Martha Wooten, a minister, and 
the second speaker in eloquence at that time in Amer- 
ica. Lucretia Mott was admitted by all people to have 
been the most sublimely eloquent preacher in the 
English language, when in her prime, and Martha 
Wooten was next and to my ear and heart, was the 



72 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

equal. 'Tis said that Tom Corvvin caught his highest 
touch of eloquence while listening to Lucretia Mott in 
Philadelphia. 

While at Richmond I met Alfred Haldey, from 
Bloomfield, in Parke County, who was an intimate 
friend and co-worker with mj father in their young 
days; he invited me to go to Bloomfield, now Bloom- 
ingdale, and teach their winter school ; this was condi- 
tionally agreed to — provided I got there in time. 

Here I want to say, while attending the Yearly 
meeting at Richmond, I met and f onned an acquain c- 
ance with Rowland T. Reed, then just grown, In- 
diana's most gifted and most neglected poet. I had 
seen and memorized his poem, '^Autumn Evening 
Thoughts," published in the 'Tree Labor Advocate" 
1841, and had an especial desire to meet him. When 
we met it was as kindred spirits, and we formed a 
friendship that was never broken, until his untimely 
death some years ago; he married my Sister FrieuLl 
Drucilla A. Unthauk, and through her the friendship 
still lives. 

Returning from Xew^port to Spic eland I spent a 
few days and then started westward, going by Carth- 
ag'e and Walnut Ridge where many friends and ac- 
quaintances lived; from there I went to Whitelick, in 
Morgan County, going through Indianapolis, then :i 
small town. Late one evening, footsore and tired T 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 73 

reached Benjamin White's iiouse, near Mooresville, 
one of my heels had been blistered and was quite 
painful. Aunt Mary White, my father's cousin, and 
sister to Levi Coffin, acted the part of a tender mother, 
took me in, poulticed my foot, and took oare of mo 
until in traveling order. This stop wa^ especially 
pleasant and lasting in the friendships fonned with the 
family, the evenings being spent in stories from the old 
home land and lessons in pioneer life, and Hoosier 
characteristics. 

The next journey was to Spring, in Hendricks, 
my home county, where some of the nearest Carolina 
neighbors had settled, with a large acquaintance, a 
week was spent there then the last stage of forty miles 
was begun. There were several large creeks to cross 
with no bridges, or boats, and the weather was getting 
oool, but the old habit of fording was again practiced 
and no bad results followed the cold baths. A part 
of the trip was through what was then new, rough 
country, in many places the road was poor even for 
walking, but now a beautiful pike, straight as a line 
runs through a succession of fine gTazing and grass 
lands, with the streams all spanned with steel and iron 
bridges, built by the state and counties, a marvelous 
change. 

Annapolis, north of Bloomfield two miles, was 
then a village of some note and business; my arrival 



74 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

at the town was about sunset and I went directly to 
my old teacher, neighbor, and friend, Dr. Horace F. 
Cannon, who bid me a joyous welcome, and my jonr 
ney for the winter ended; but I soon learned 
that the people, the business, the lay of the 
land and all the envu'onments were differenc 
from the central part of the state. Espe- 
cially was there a marked change in the business of 
the people. The Wabash river with its tributaries 
was then one of the busy marts of the northwest; it 
furnished an outlet to a large portion of Indiana and 
Illinois; there was a fleet of river steamers on its 
waters, and thousands of flat boats were constructed 
on the bank of the river and the creeks holding from 
60 to 200 tons of freight, all of which were loaded and 
floated down stream each spring to New Orleans. It 
was the ambition of nearly all the boys to take at least 
one flat boat voyage to l^ew Orleans, and return oy 
steamer. Many of the middle-aged men were as 
familiar with Xew Orleans as their home towns, and 
with the 3000 miles of river as with home county 
roads. This condition of business and line of trade 
gave the whole population a strong local character, 
like sailor language and phrases of seaport cities, so ii 
was on the Wabash; there were many boatmen words 
and phraser in common use among all the people uf 
which thev were unconscious. The wild, free life of 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 75 

a boatruan gave tone and impress to the business and 
business people, there was a broader, higher impulse 
in their characters that was distinctive to a stranger, 
and it was the character of the people on that river 
that first originated the term "Wild West." In those 
earlj days there was magic in the name in any river 
town anywhere between the mouth of the Wabash 
and New Orleans ; if a boatman was in trouble or dan- 
ger he only needed to raise his voice and shout "Wa- 
bash, Wabash, Wabash," three times and then pause 
a moment, then repeat it and in an instant every Wa- 
bash man within hearing caught up the cry and rushed 
to the rescue, and soon there would be a throng of 
fearless boatman on hand, and woe be to the evil- 
doers, who fell into their hands; they were not only 
brave, but honorable and just, and 50 of them could 
defy municipal law in any city. One time in New 
Orleans, a Wabash man was arrested on a fraudulent 
claim, and was being taken to the lock-up, when he 
shouted Wabash, and in five minutes a hundred men 
took him from the oflftcers, and aboard an up-river 
steamer nearly ready to start. The civil oflftcers sum- 
moned a posse of 80 armed men, and attempted to 
retake the man, then the cry of "Indiana, Indiana, 
Indiana" was raised, and in fifteen minutes 500 In- 
dianians and other up-river men were on hand. Th'^ 
posse was scattered like wild deer, and the boatmen 



76 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

cleared the wharf until the steamer sailed, then dis- 
persed as quickly as though nothing had happened. 
People animated with this spirit, and engaged in this 
kind of life were the kind I now found myself sojourn- 
ing among. My old neighbors who had emigrated 
from five to twenty years before had fallen into the 
same spirit, and did not seem to know they were 
changed; to me it was interesting to note and study 
this transition, and I gave them the name of Hoosier 
Carolinians. 

Some days were spent visiting before my school 
began ; there were several relatives on the Cofiin, Ves- 
tal and ^ewlin side of the family and all were living 
within a few miles of Bloomfield and Annapolis. Al- 
fred Hadley's house was the Underground Railroad 
station on the Wabash route, so I was among old neigh- 
bors, old friends, and in connection with some old bus 
iness, making new surroundings very agreeable. 

The school was large and consisted mostly of 
growTi up young people, w^ell advanced, which made 
it very interesting, and responsible for here again 
memory was taken for superior ability, and I was con 
scious of it, consequently was in trouble in mind much 
of the time lest the students should be disappointed 
in their anticipations, but the vschool seemed to give 
satisfaction to all parties. There was a literary so- 
ciety connected with the school that was well attended, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



77 



tlie public debates were especially interesting when 
the subject of slavery was under discussion, the spirit 
of the county being strongly pro-skvery, and hostile 
to public discussion, but the school sympathized with 
me, and freedom of speech was secured. Female 
suffrage was fii*st discussed that winter and it raised a 
stonn of opposition, and I had to face the storm alone, 
at the beginning. Mrs. Swishhelm was then publish- 
ing her Woman's Rights paper at Pittsburg, Pa., and 
quite a number of copies were secured for the occa- 
sion, which sowed seed that has borne abundant fruit. 

As the spring of 1844 opened the wdiole country 
was astir with preparations for the boating season. 
Thousands of barrels of flour had been packed by the 
millers, wheat had been put in barrels, thousands of 
barrels of pork were ready for shipping, hundreds of 
thousands of pounds of bulk pork were in the packing 
houses, and another article entirely new to me — thou- 
sands of dozens of chickens, ducks, and geese were 
collected readv for the southern market. Every in- 
terest was looking after its own progress, which made 
lively times; hundreds of men had been busy all win- 
ter building flat boats to float this immense surplus <-o 
market — and above all, all along the river banks were 
com pens with an almost unlimited supply of corn 
ready for any market that opened. 

Amid all this stir and push it was little wonder 



78 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

that I caught the fever and determined to take a trip 
^'Down the river'' and see the wonderful ''Door to the 
sea." So at the close of my school I booked as a boat- 
hand at the bow, or foi-^vard oar, on Washington Had- 
ley's flat boat, which was 80 feet long, 16 wide and 
drew three feet of water. The load was 300 baiTels 
of flour, 90 barrels of pork, 40,000 pounds of pork, 250 
dozens of chickens and several barrels of eggs. An- 
other man, Joseph Battard, was also loading a boat 
that was going as consort, and the two to lash when 
they reached the mouth of the Ohio. The boat was 
loaded in Sugar CVeek, near Annapolis and pulled out 
into the Wabash, and down a few miles to Montezuma 
where the ship supplies were taken aboard, and then 

on , 1844, we cast loose and were afloat 

for a 3000 miles' run, which to me was another new^ 
phase of life, and another life lesson. The Wabash 
at that time was far more picturesque and charaiinfi: 
and had nearly twice the volume of water that it has 
to-day; its banks were clothed with magnificent for- 
ests, which cast their deep shadows over its dark water, 
like a cloud at noonday, and at night was weird, solemn 
and terrible. To-day the forests are gone, and the 
river looks dwarfed and lifeless, few boats of any kind 
are seen, and the grandfathers tell of boatman stories 
of the past. In a few days my hands and shoulders 
learned the art of heaving at the oar, and T was soon 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 79 

equal to the best, and in addition soon learned to row 
a skiff on the roughest waves, or strong-est wind that 
came. 

Everything was so new and charming that for a 
week I slept but little, was on deck listening to stories 
of the pilot, or steersman, and learning the art of steer- 
ing. The boat was steered by an oar 24 feet long, 
nicely balanced on an iron pin in the middle of the 
stern, the blade or water end was nicely shaped like an 
oar with the blade six feet long and eighteen inches 
pivot to give it great strength; a strong skillful man 
could exert an immense force with this long sweep, 
and turn the seemingly unwieldy boat in a very small 
wide; the beam was ten inches in diameter at the 
circle if it had headway. There was an oar amid- 
ship on the right hand side, and a bow oar on the left 
hand side about twej^^e feet from the bow, this was my 
oar, about 14 feet long, the other oar was 18 feet. 
One hand worked the bow and two amidship. 

Pulling at the oar was not a regular business, the 
boat was always intended to float with the current, the 
oars were to avoid drifts, snags, sand bars, skirt land ^, 
eddies and cross currents, and in time of "liigh wind it 
was no child's play to keep from being driven ashore, 
yet it was all a wild, free life, there was a feeling among 
all boatmen that they were cut loose from all the world 



BO LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and beyond all human law, much like a sailor out on 
the limitless sea. 

Often, under favorable weather a boat would not 
touch land for many days, though the crew, or a part, 
of them might land every day; -oft times it was their 
pastime to take the skiff and row ahead many miles, 
land in the cane break, at the cotton fields, the town.-^ 
and immense wood yards, where steamers stopped 
to take on wood for fuel. It was also a favorite amuse- 
ment to visit neighboring boats, that were always in 
sight, the salutation being, ''Where are you from?'' 
and the name of the river was always given,, and by the 
time we had reached the mouth of Red river w^e had 
seen boats from fifty, or more rivers. This naturally 
brought the boatmen in contact wdth each other from 
widely separated points, and gave them a breadth of 
geography and business knowledge that was surpris- 
ing to eastern and southern people. Here in this wild, 
free boating, was reai^ed and prepared a race of hardy 
men, ready w^hen the time came to march westward 
and take possession of half a continent and finish the 
foundation of our wonderful nation. 

Soon after starting I was installed as cook on our 
lx)at, and always managed to have plenty to eat, what 
it lacked in style was made up in good appetites. The 
supplies were all we could ask. There were chickens, 
eggs in abundance, any amount of ham, two or three 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 8! 

barrels of apples, potatoes, and all other vegetables, 
bntter, cheese, kraut and all that hnngry men could- 
think of, and that, too, in every form that any or all 
our mothers had ever devised. Washington Hadley 
was an excellent carver, and we all took lessons in ar- 
tistic cai-ving. Eggs were eaten in every form be 
tween raw and egg-nog. Coffee and tea were made in 
all the strength and weakness of which these two bee- 
erages were capable. Both sides of the bread were 
sopped in home-made maple molasses; when a fresh can 
of home-made butter was opened there was no stint in 
its promiscuous use, etc., etc. Yet in the living there 
was as much difference among the boats, as at th^ 
homes of the boatmen, on some the food was scarce and 
poorly cooked, and frightfully dirty. So it was in 
personal habits, some were nice and clean while others 
did not change clothes during the voyage. It was 
quite a job to feed the chickens each day, to water and 
wash out the coops and see that all was going well: nor 
was there silence at any hour aboard our boat, for there 
were hundreds of mouths all crowing or cackling at 
once, but in a few days the ear became accustomed 
to it like the noise of machinery ; being cook exempted 
me from any of this work. 

We floated out of the Ohio into the Mississippi 
just before daylight, and according to universal cus- 
tom jBred off all the guns loaded to their utmost ca- 



82 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

pacit J, with muzzles held close to the water to inten- 
sify the concussion, and in ten minutes we recognized 
the report of our Consort Boat close behind and we 
gave an answering shout. As soon as daylight came 
they pulled up and lashed the boats together with 
strong ropes, the inner oars on each being taken up and 
moved to the outer side ; my oar was not moved and my 
chum, Aleck Armstrong, was put right behind me, 
and from that time we swung our oars on time like 
clock work. The united crews now made a company 
of ten jolly, active fellows, our stearsman being the 
oldest, in middle life, sober and steady, and a good 
riverman. Our consort had a variety load, but the 
principal was 500 dozens of chickens and 100 turkeys, 
beside oats, flour, wheat, etc., and drew the same water, 
so the decks were even, and our territory was now 80x 
32 feet; the windows to our cabins came together, and 
we had to close and cut new ones; but the music of 500 
dozen more mouths can better be ima^ned than de- 
scribed. 

With the addition to the companv, with the new 
surroundings, and the wonderful river, my memory 
was kept to its highest tension. There was scarce an 
hour but there was a steamer in sight or sound. They 
were from hundreds of different ports, Pittsburg To 
the northeast to far up the Missouri in the northwest. 
In a note-book I took the names of over one hundred 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 83 

steamers that passed in the daytime, which is very in- 
teresting to look over after a lapse of fifty years, and 
after the railroads have nearly destroyed river traffic. 

Everything went well with us on the voyage; to 
me every turn in the river had a new sui-prise, every 
night-watch was full of interest; the otherwise still 
night was broken by the cry of the night birds whicdi 
filled the cane-breaks, thousands of frogs and night 
animals made the air musical with unmusical discord- 
ant sounds; new constellations shown in the southern 
sky and old ones more clearly defined; the songs of 
lone boatmen who were keeping watch, sounded sweet 
and low as he sang the grand old songs of love and 
home. Sometimes the wild peal of a bugle-horn 
would burst upon the ear, or some homo-sick High- 
lander would give the air of ''Bonnie Doon," or "The 
Campbells are Coming," sometimes elevating his horn 
and sending the music fioating off over the placid 
water, then holding down close to the water would 
make it roar like coming thunder, when his soul and 
heart were in the melodv. 

We stopped at ISTew Madrid, Memphis, Vicks- 
burg, ^N'atchez, Baton Rouge and Ft. Washington; 
fifty miles below Iberville we encountered a head wind 
that increased to a gale, and we took refuge in a bend 
for several hours ; during the delay a part of the crew 
landed and climbed the levee and found we were on tho 



84 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

border of a very large sirgar cane farrri. with immeii'^c^, 
live oak trees standing over the area in beautiful artis- 
tic order; one was near us, to this we hastened and 
were soon clambering among its wide spreading 
branches, from which we could see the far end of th o 
rows of cane more than half mile away and a dozen or 
more slaves plomng with slow going mules, coming 
our way. I descended and rowed to meet them; the^; 
seemed astonished to see me and began looking un- 
easily towards a beautiful mansion in the distance; 
a voice cried out, ''Halloo, there," looking up there 
was a man galloping towards us across the field, who 
soon came up and in a gTuff voice demanded what I 
was doing there; without any hesitation I told him, 
and said that tree was full of boys; he then turned 
towards it and we walked on together; to the question 
of where I was from, I said from North Carolina, and 
without giving him time to speak, rattled on telling 
of my trip to Indiana, my boating and futtire aspira- 
tions, and before he was aware of it, had completely 
captured him, and to his surprise, could talk of men 
he personally knew^; instead of ordering us off his 
ground he spent near an hour in pleasant conversa- 
tion, and when the signal came from the boat he bid 
us a very kindly good-by. I read that man at sight 
and knew how to surround and take him, and did 
sooner than expected. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 85 

We landed in the wonderful city in the forenoon, 
had been 22 days afloat and were all well and strong 
and in good working order. The crews of flat boats 
were always paid off and were at liberty after three 
days; then they usually did some trading, sight-seeing, 
and ofttimes took a ride to the gulf. With our party 
this was done except myself; I remained and watched 
the boat until unloaded and sold, about two weeks. 
During this time I was in the midst of Wonder Land, 
had not seen a ship of any kind before; could hardly 
realize there were so many ships in the world as were 
in port; along the ship landing there was a perfect 
forest of masts and spars, with a babel of tongues and 
strange, foreign faces. There were 200 river steam- 
ers at the landing all the time and 2500 flat boats; 
there were four miles of wharf in front of the city, and 
all the distance was a scene of life and bustle that wa=5 
exciting and inspiring to my mind. There were hun- 
dreds of flat boats alongside sailing ships unloading 
their cargoes; there were ships alongside of river 
steamers unloading their cargoes for inland shipping. 
The wharf was everywhere piled with articles for ex- 
port, or those imported and the babel of tongues and 
the clatter and clang on every side was like the roar 
of a coming storm. 

Fifty years passed by, and then, I stood on the 
self same place; again I looked in vain for the old land 
6 



^6 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

•marks but ttey were gone; I looked for the old cliar- 
-acteristics but could not find them ; instead there were 
new sights, new sounds, new faces, new voices; in- 
stead of the roar of the passing stonn there was heard 
the rumble of deep tones of thunder, the gi'ound trem- 
bled beneath my feet, and there were clouds of smoko 
and steam around and over all ; and above the din was 
heard the shriek of the locomotive, and the harsher 
and louder bray of the ocean steamer. The levee had 
been built a hundred feet wider out into the river; the 
whole extent of the miles of wharf was covered with 
railroad tracks ; there Avere hundreds of freight cars in 
motion and other hundreds still; there was not a flat 
boat in sight: a few lone river steamers were lying- 
miles farther up the river, the sail vessels had dimin- 
ished one-half, but standing out above all were the 
huge ocean steamers into whose depths a constant 
stream of all articles of export, were descending. In- 
stead of the block and tackle and the He-o-heave, there 
was the ceaseless rattle of steam derrick lifting its 
tons of freight night and day without ceasing. 

Across the river where the steamboat calabooses 
used to be, and a small stragglino- village on the bor- 
ders of the swamp were now a forest of smoke stacks 
and many acres were covered with large tugs; there 
were immense steam ferry-boats capable of taking a 
railroad train without delay, hitch, jolt or jar. The 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 87 

swamp was covered with beautiful gardens and su- 
burban homes. All, all wa® clianged! In the city 
itself all was changed, instead of the lumbering old 
omnibus and lazy-going coach, the street car glided 
along the level streets amid new^ scenes of life and ac- 
tivity; the Xew^ Orleans of 1844 w^as gone forever; a 
new spirit had entered into its innermost life. The 
haughty, slave-holding autocrat no longer rode in 
haughty pride through the street; the slave now 
walked a free man and a citizen. The haughty power 
of slavery was broken and gone forever; a new race 
of men were busy in its marts animated by a new im- 
pulse and full of higher, broader aspirations and am- 
bitions. 

While in the city I was taken with the river fever, 
which weakened me very much and at the end of two 
weeks took steamer for return to my nearest friends. 
Landing at Evansville, in southern Indiana, I started 
to walk 120 miles back to BkH:)mfield, Ind., but I found 
the fever had weakened me so much that walking was 
difficult. Calling at a farm house I asked for a drink 
of milk: the kind-hearted lady looked me in the face 
a moment and said, ^'You look weak, my son," and 
brought me nearly a quart of good, pure milk; I drank 
it like a hungry child; it was like an opiate and I felr, 
relief all over, then thanking the lady, who would noL 
receive pay, I lay down on the grass in the warm sun- 



m LIFE AND TRAVELS 

shine and slept soundly for several hours. On awak- 
ing I felt weak, but refreshed, and brave at heart, and 
started on my journey. One day a teamster overtook 
me and pressed me to get in his wagon and ride, but 
the shaking and jolting hurt me so I thanked him for 
his kindness, and started again on foot. At the end 
of a week, I reached Alfred Hadley's home brave and 
cheerful, but still weak, though improving every day, 
I had been gone nearly two months, and was now in no 
shape for joining Freemont on his exploring expedi- 
tion ; unforeseen events had changed my program, and 
as it proved for life. 

Alfred Hadley and family all bade me welcome 
to and into the family, for as mother Rhoda afterwards 
said, I looked like I needed a mother and a home ; my 
Aunt Ann Hill, who lived close by was not unmindful 
of my situation and gave me much kind attention. I 
had now passed my first year in the school of the 
World, and probably ^'ew students ever learned f aste? 
or remembered their lessons better. Though nothing 
sensational had occurred, and no startling adventure 
had fallen to my lot, yet I had seen and heard mucin 
that in a few years was to move and influence the whole 
world. The summer of 1844 was spent in the family 
of Alfred Hadley, and though not able to make mo'-e 
than half a hand at work, I was all right in the Under- 
ground Railroad ; the Wabash line was getting in good 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 89 

ruDuing order and passengers very frequent, and in 
spite of the violent and almost mnrderous hostility of 
a majority of the community, especially Rockville, 
the county seat, the fugitives came and went like fleet- 
ing shadows, defying all efforts to detect or prevent. 
It was less difficult to find the way from one station 
to another, the roads were gradually being put on the 
land, lines though rough and muddy, were straight and 
easy to follow, beside the stations were nowhere more 
than 20 t^ 30 miles apart and often friendly homes 
between. It required more shrewd management than 
courage and daring; the pro-slavery Hoosiers invari- 
ably spent much time in swearing what and how they 
were going to do, and they sought the fugitive when 
he was gone, and we quietly smiled and kept still. 

The political campaign of 1844 was an important 
one to anti-slavery cause ; Henry Clay was the Whig 
candidate, and James K. Polk, the Democratic, for 
the presidency; during the contest it was brought out 
and proved that Henry Clay had publicly said, '^Two 
hundred years of legislation has sanctioned and sancti- 
fied negro slavery. I am opposed to gradual or im- 
mediate emancipation." The Abolition orators made 
that their special line of attack, and made the woods 
of Ohio and Indian a echo with their vehement thunder. 
That was the death knell to Henry Clay; where is he 
to-day? He has dropped out of history, while the 
Tiame of Cassius M. Clay, his Abolition cousin, w'ill 
live through all coming time as the bravest of the 
brave. 



THIRD CHAPTER. 



Revisiting the Carolina home and friends — Second 
trip to Indiana — Married in June, 1845 — Learn- 
ing to farm — Purchase of land in Hendricks 
County — Moving to the new home, and begir^- 
ning life anew — Death of my wife — Return 
again to N'orth Carolina- — Bringing my mother, 
two nieces, two cousins and boy to Indiana — Be- 
ginning again — Brother Alfred's amval — Sick- 
ness and death of my youngest child — Married 
again to Ruth Hadley — Exciting political times 
— War of the Rebellion — Events commenced 
with the war — Sickness of Brother Alfred, and 
death of Brother Emory, and William Thomas. 

Amid the excitement of the political campaign, 
of mass meeting, pole raising, illuminations, etc., etc., 
another unforeseen event occurred, wholly unexpected, 
and against which no precautions had been taken. 
Alfred Hadley's oldest daughter, Emily, and I came 
to the conclusion that we would try living together. 
Though by using a little exaggeration, imagination 
(90) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 91 

and sentiment the event might have been called ro- 
mantic, in the eyes of others it was similar to all such 
events. 

This was another decided break in my life pro- 
gram, calling for some reconstruction and change of 
outline; accordingly it was settled that I should re- 
turn to mv home in Xorth Cai'olina, get what little 
was due me on final family arrangement, bid good-by 
to home and countrv, and return to Indiana. 

In the fall Milton Hadley, brother to my intend- 
ed, and I started on foot; he to spend a year at Nevr 
Garden Boarding-school. I had measurably recov- 
ered my health, and we started out with hearty good- 
will. The Madison and Indianapolis Railroad, the 
first built in Indiana, was then building, and a con- 
struction train was running to Edenburg; we reached 
that point and took the box cars for Madison, and then 
took steamer for Point Pleasant, and then set out on 
foot, taking the route by way of the ''Hawk's N^est" 
on 'New River and Red Sulphur Springs, striking my 
former route at Peter's Mountain, then followed it 
back home. 

My return was looked upon as quite a noted evenr 
among my young associates; it was a custom in those 
days to measure people's popularity by the number 
of hundred miles they had traveled, and the number 
of states they had been in. I had gone beyond the 



92 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

most popular, and accomplished it without money, or 
wealthy family influence. This was cause of offense 
to the children of some slaveholders, who had trav- 
eled through Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee and 
called themselves w^ealthy; for one unknown injthe 
higher social circles to accomplish so much, and do it 
almost entirely on foot, was an insult to their respecta- 
bility, and I had to suffer scorn and contempt for the 
offense, but to my intimate friends it was cause of real 
joy, and it did my heart good to receive their kindly 
greeting, and the kindness was returned by rehearsing 
my adventures, and all the new, beautiful, and won- 
derful scenes through which I had passed. 

About three months were spent at home, and then 
arrangements were made to return to Indiana. My 
mother had given me a colt, which was now grown 
to be a fine, young mare ; she also gave me a small one- 
horse wagon; with this I prepared to make a wintei 
journey across the mountains. On the second of Feb 
ruary, 1845, I again bid adieu to the old home and 
loved ones, and had nice weather for three days, but 
on reaching the mountains, met a severe snow storm 
that lasted three davs, and the weather turned very 
cold. The snow drifted very much and there was a 
great deal of ice in the creeks and rivers which made 
it difficult and dangerous traveling; in crossing the 
Big Suel Mountains I was three days and nights with- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 93 

out fire, though I did not suffer with cold; I walked 
before my horse all the time. She would follow me 
anywhere, sometimes the drifts were four feet deep 
across the road, making cold wading, but finally the 
range was crossed, and a safe descent made to the banks 
of the Kanawha River, where the snow was melting 
rapidly, and the mud soon became more serious than 
the snow. It took four days' hard traveling to go 55 
miles from the Salt Works to Point Pleasant on the 
Ohio River. There I took steamer and landed at 10 
P. M. in Cincinnati,, the 21st. No journey in life has 
been more exhausting, or really more dangerous than 
that one, as I look back upon it now, though alone, 
and surrounded with ice and snow there was no fear, 
hesitation or doubt; there was a secret voice in my 
h^art that always answered, go, all is well; and my 
trusty animal seemed to have the same spirit ready to 
plunge into the cold stream, and flounder through the 
snow drifts, in fact, to follow wherever I would lead. 

Notwithstanding, the 22nd of February was a cold, 
blustery day, the city was all astir with martial pomp, 
and all a-flutter with banners and flags, celebrating 
Washington's birthday; the big guns on the wharf 
bellowed, out their hollow boom over the water, and 
si:ormy drums shook the freezing air, and from gray- 
headed sires to almost babes and sucklings were utter- 
ing shouts of glad acclaim. All this soon ceased to bo 



94 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

interesting; there was another and higher attractiou. 
further on, and at 10 A. M. the journey westward was 
resumed ; two days' travel along the line pike road now 
finished, took me to Richmond, Ind., and one more day 
back to my Spiceland home with Uncle William and 
Rebecca Unthank and their children. 

Here one cvcle of events was completed, and was 
on the eve of another, the events in which were as un- 
known as those of the past had been, but still that 
silent voice was whispering go. 

I know not what the future hath, 

Of marvel or surprise, 
Assured above that life and death 

His mercy underlies. 

A week's re^st and again the journey was resumed. 
The roads were so muddv that it was slow traveling; 
the National road was so bad that I avoided it by going 
aside and traveling more private and parallel roads. 
Twenty miles was a hard day's travel, over pole 
bridges, log causeways and lx)ttomless mud slashes. 
The thaw-out was on hand, and in those days it took 
a strong attraction to pull through the nearly impos- 
sible country roads. One thing this generation cannot 
understand about the travel fifty yeai*s ago; the roads 
were cut out through the dense forest of large trees 
and were full of stumps in many places, three to five 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 95 

feet in diameter; it was impossible to every time go 
around them; with a one-horse wagon, the horse had 
to go over the stump, or one set of wheels go over it, 
so it made driving a constant succession of ups and 
do^vns, and sometimes a turn-over, but is was a part ot 
every day life, and had to be met and overcome. 

About the 20th of March I arrived at Uncle 
Joseph Hill's safe and sound, but tired of mud, rain, 
and snow; and at once began looking after the practical 
side of life, by renting Uncle Joseph's farm and going 
to work. Here came in my first trial and perplexity; 
Hoosier farming was very different from Carolina; 
the climate, soil, season and way of cultivating was all 
different, and people had to bestir themselves when 
spring came; there was no winter plowing; after the 
ground thawed out and settled, the plow had to go 
every hour of daylight to prepare the ground, and then 
to cultivate the crop till harvest came. Then every 
hour was necessary to secure the grain and grass; '*ri 
many places the stumj^s were so thick the wheat was 
still cut with the reap hook, and hired help was hard 
to get, so nearly all were cropping in the summer 
time. All this was before me and made me a little 
nervous as to how I might succeed, and still more per- 
plexed as to what people would say. 

On the 25th day of June, Emily Hadley and 1 
were married at Bl(X)mfield, Parke County, India naj 



96 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

after the order of the Society of Friends, now Friends 
Church. Of course it was a wonderful event in our 
lives, but verv' much like other similar events before 
and since. We saw and began life from the practical 
side; next day after the marriage I did a good day's 
plowing, and the second day after my wife walked 
over with me to Joseph Hill's, and from that day we 
were one. 

I fully realized my situation, and was keenly 
alive and sensitive to what might be said. My wife 
had elected to marry a poor Carolina boy instead of 
wealthy suitors, and for me to fail was more than T 
could bear to think of. One former suitor had said of 
her, ''She has married a pcK)r Carolinian, and will 
have to dance in the hog trrtugh the rest of her days." 
T said to her when I heard it Iwould make a living 
for her, or shorten my days at hard work. 

My farming was a success that year, and that 
winter I taught school again. The next year my 
farming was again a success, but I wanted a home of 
my own, but I was not able to buy land in that pari: 
of the country. The wonderful Wabash and Lak.,' 
Erie canal was being built from Toledo to Evansville 
on the Ohio River, which, when completed, would 
be one of the longest in the world : land on the line of 
its construction increased in value very fast. Water 
navigation was the idea of national prosperity at that 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 97 

time, railroads as yet being in tlie background and in 
the experimental staire. With a sad heart I had to 
turn away from this future great improvement and 
home market, to seek a home where land was cheap. 
It was 40 miles east to the land my mother had en- 
tered in 1833, and it was considered 40 miles from 
market. She gave me privilege to (x^cupy and culti- 
vate as my own, but that would not be mine; but Iwenr, 
to see it and found an 80-acre lot alongside for sale for 
$537.50; this I bought and rented the cabin and a 
small piece of land on it for the season. This event 
seemed to give us new energy and new life ; we had 
something to work for; a spot of earth we could call 
ours; a home. 

On January 27, 1847, a son was born to us, and 
like other parents we thought it a precious gift from 
the Lord, and naturally began to dream of its future, 
but alas! on the 12th of May succeeding it was taken 
from us, which cast a cloud over our lives, and made 
a shadow fall over our prospective home. 

On the 2nd day of February, 1848, we arrive4 on 
our land* after two days' hard travel through mud and 
ice, and started the first fire at home. The cabin 
was 20x22 feet, with regTilar cabin roof, made of 
boards four feet long and held in place by heavy poles ; 
the fioor was rough boards fastened down with wooden 
pins, and the chimney was ''stick and clay'' with a 



^^8 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

fire-place six feet wide, with back built up with stones 
three feet. We had no stove, for they were costly at 
that day ; we had an outfit of skillets, ovens, pots, a tin 
reflector, and a long-handled frying-pan, etc., etc., and 
I soon rigged up a wooden crane to swing the pots 
over the fire, for the boiling vas done in the pots, and 
the baking done over coals on the hearth. There was 
room for two beds in the back end ; for kitchen, parlor 
and bed-room were all one; the table w^as made of 
rough boards, the result of my own skill ; the cupboard, 
of same material, w^as fastened on pins driven in the 
wall. There was but one door and no window, but 
another door and a small window was soon added; and 
we were happy and thankful for all our surroundings. 
In a few weeks sugar-making began ; there was a 
fine sugar orchard of 400 trees, large and thrifty ; this 
we opened, and w^ere busy with the work for three 
weeks w^hen the season closed ; we made an abundance 
of sugar and molasses for home use and some for mar- 
ket. When I look back to what was before us the 
spring of 1848, the wonder is that we w^ere not dis- 
couraged and filled with despair; the fields that were 
enclosed were thickly set with dead trees; many had 
fallen during the winter; plowing could not begin until 
much hard w^ork was done in rolling and burning logs ; 
fences needed repairing, and worst of all we did not 
have money to hire help, but we were young and hope- 



OF ADDiSON COFFIN. 99 

ful, full of determination, and did not know what the 
future might bring. We worked early and late, 
studied, planned and prayed for patience, strength and 
health, and did not lose a day, and as things began to 
put on a home-like' look, and the crops grew and har- 
vest came and rewarded our efforts; we were happy 
in our simple, homely home, and gladness filled our 
hearts. 

The year 1849 was unusually dry and crops were 
short, and we were rather straitened in making pay- 
ments, but the county surveyor took sick and could 
not work, and I took his place for three months, for 
which service I received $44.00, quite an item in our 
present condition; this surveying proved an advantage 
to me in after years. It was a time of violent political 
agitation; the Abolitionists were becoming a fixed 
quantity in politics, and the pro-slavery elements were 
hostile and abusive. Most of my surveying was laying 
out and locating public roads in which all had an in- 
terest, thus I was brought in contact with all classes, 
and I never failed to defend abolitionism; and never 
did my knowledge of the Bible and history stand me 
more in hand, and I could out talk any opposition, and 
make the old pioneers believe I was very wise and 
learned, beside my knowledge of surveying was a sur- 
prise to them. Many times I would amuse a large 
company of them by marking on the ground, showing 



100 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

how to measure by triangulation both in height and 
distance, and more than one boy caught the inspiration 
to become a surveyor, and in time succeeded. This 
contact with pro-slavery class had the effect to lessen 
their violence toward me and my cause. I shourld 
have stated that in September, 1848, another son, who 
still lives, was born to us, which, in part, filled the 
blank that was caused by the death of our first-born. 

It may not be out of place to relate a very amus- 
ing event that (x^curred in my surveying days, which 
^ives an insight into those pioneer times. In the 
north corner of the county (Hendricks) there was a 
new section being settled, and a road was wanted 
through that part. There was a sturdy, old Ken- 
tuckian who was clearing a field in the dense fore.-:i, 
and had killed many large rattle-snakes, which were 
dangerously abundant; he had killed a very large one 
with sixteen rattles and a button; it being unusually 
large he did not burn it as was his wont, but left it 
lying where killed. A dandy lawyer, an old a'> 
quaintance, from Kentucky, had come on a visit to the 
"backwoods" and came out where the snake lay, he 
was riding a fine horse, and was equipped with kid 
gloves, spurs and riding whip. Seeing the rattles on 
the dead snake (its head was cut off), he alighted, drev/ 
off one of his gloves and with a stylish pocket knife 
proceeded to cut off the rattles ; he squatted down, toolc 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 101 

the rattles in his gloved fingers, then applied the knife ; 
as soon as the knife entered the flesh, the snake strnck 
back as if to bite and hit the dandy on his naked hand 
with unerring precision with the bloody stub of its 
neck, then writhed convulsively at the man's feet. He 
wdth one mid shriek bounded into the air, then fell 
backward in a dead swoon. He had to be carried to 
the cabin, and it was some hours before he regained 
consciousness, and three weeks before he was able to 
start home;, and a year before he fully recovered from 
the shock. He never returned to Indiana; he had no 
use for a country where snakes with heads cut off 
could still bite. Those large rattle-snakes are very ten- 
acious of life, like the snapping turtle, and ^vill writhe 
and strike for several hours after apparently killed. 
The old pioneer above knew Avhat the Kentucky dandv 
would get, but had not counted on the effect; his good 
wife said she did not want any more such fun. 

In 1849, my brother, Emory, who had married 
a neighbor girl, Elmira H. Foster, moved to Indiana 
and settled at Dunreith, which place he started when 
the railroad was constructed. They came to see us 
soon after, and thought it was rather a heavy under- 
taking to make a living among the big trees, stumps 
and brush; beside we were a half-way place between 
Whitlick, in Morgan County, and Bloomfield, in Parke 
County, and did more in feeding others than for our- 

7 



102 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

selves. Many times we would cover our cabin floor 
with beds for our friends to sleep, and if cold weather, 
keep them and the house warm with a big log fire that 
would burn all night. This was pioneer style, and 
was quite enjoyable, though rather hard on beginner^, 
and brother and wife protested against it; saying we 
were doing more than our share, even though we did 
it freely, and much of it was to traveling Friends. 

With all our hard work and discouragement, the 
Lord seemed to bless our efforts, and in 1850, we fiii- 
islied paying for our home, and built a good log l>arn. 
In spite of the violent pro-slavery spirit without, anrl 
the negative opposition within the church, we held 
our own by persistent agitation and discussion of the 
alwlition subject. 

But alas! we knew not v/hat was in store for r.s. 
On the 2Cth of December, 1850, a third son was born, 
and in 21 hours Emily showed signs of fever, which 
increased in spite of medical skill, until the 2nd of 
January, 1851, she passed away. 

The shock and feeling of utter desolation that 
overwhelmed me was such that it never wholly left 
me; it seemed more than I w^as able to bear. Father 
and mother Hadley arrived a few hours after she died. 
Though she was fully resigned, and felt the glad as- 
surance that she would receive the answer to her pray- 
ers "Well done, good and faithful serv^ant, enter into 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 103 

the joy of thy Lord," yet she had a strong desire to see 
her mother before departing. When this was told her 
mother it so touched her, that she never got over her 
heart yearning to have heard her dying words. 

Father and Mother Hadley kindly offered me a 
home with them in my helplessness, so I rented my corn 
ground for the season, and as soon as we could arranga 
things returned to their home. During the summer 
I made frequent trips to and from my home, for I 
had a large wheat crop, for that time, and this I har- 
vested and threshed. In the hot weather I preferred 
traveling after night, and walked the distance twice 
(40 miles) by moonlight, and enjoyed the solitude, as 
I passed the silent homes by the way; but the longing 
for my home became so strong, that in the fall I de- 
termined to return to JS^orth Carolina for my mother 
to come and live with me.' Some time in the begin- 
ning of October, I started, going by rail from Amo to 
Madison on the Ohio river, then by steamer to Ouy- 
andot, Va. ; I then walked to Oharlestown, and took 
the stage over the mountains which was covered with 
snow, then on foot again to the old home in New Gar- 
den, where all were taken by surprise, as I had not 
notified them of my intent. 

My mother at first declined to come away from the 
grave of my father, for she wanted to be buried by 
him; but she kindly consented on my pi-omising to 



104 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

take her back for burial when she died. When this 
promise was made a A^oice in my heart said I would 
live to do it. I remained through the winter, and 
made arrangements for the return; in the meantime 
my two nieces, Mary E. and Miriam A. Henly wanted 
to come with their grandmother, also two cousins, 
Esther J. and Phineas Coffin, and a half grown negro 
boy; this was loading u:i rather heavily, but I bought 
two old, cheap, blind horses and a light wagon, and 
about the first of April, 1852, started on another over- 
land trip to Indiana. 

We presented a novel sight; our team was not 
very showy, the wagon was full of provisions, trunks, 
bales and bundles; the young folks were full of life 
and fun, they had never been far from home, and had 
not seen mountains, or large rivers, consequently, 
were full of wonder and delight. All walked except 
mother, and even she did quite often. I walked be- 
side the horses all the time. Around the camp fire 
at night there was life, fun, and story telling. The 
tent was set with open end to the fire, mother and the 
girls slept in it, while Sam, the negro boy, rolled in 
his blanket, lay across the opening at their feet as 
watchman. Phineas and I slept in th^e wagon, and 1 
kept the horses eating all night when they wished 
more food. Though things all moved on like clock- 
work, it was rather an anxious time with mother, for 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 105 

had anytliing befallen me, my company would have 
been in rather bad shape among the mountains. 

Many times the fording of rivers, and large 
creeks was amusing and full of excitement, there was 
not room for all in the wagon, so mother, one girl, and 
Sam would go first in the wagon, then Sam would un- 
hitch the horses, and bring them back, then the rest 
would go, two on a horse; this was the amusing part; 
the horses being blind, would stumble and flounder 
about, if not guided well, and there would be shoutine; 
and boisterous meiTiment, but all finally crossed over 
dry. 

When we arrived at Maiden, twelve miles abovo 
Ckarlestown, on the Kanawha river, we took steamer, 
and landed at Madison, Indiana. Thence we made 
for my, home, arriving there about the 5th of May, 
sound and well, the two old horses the better for their 
feeding. It was a surprise to all that we had made 
the trip without mishap or loss. 

Phineas Coflin went to a cousin fifteen miles 
away, and learned to be a locomotive engineer, with 
Sam for fireman. Poor Sam was killed in a wreck, 
Phineas quit the business, and finally fell at the Battle 
of Stone River while fighting in the Union army. 
Esther J. Coffin married Dr. W. F. Harvey, and is 
still li\dng. Mary E. Henly married and settled in 
Grant County, Ind., and is still living,. Miriam A^ 



106 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Henlj married and is now living in Denver, Colorado. 
All have grandchildren to whom is told the stoiy of 
the wonderful trip from North Carolina. 

A week was spent in planting a garden, and in 
making other aTrajigements for beginning again, then 
I went to father Hadley's and brought my children, 
and the new home life moved on with the routine of 
labor and care. I now had quite a family to look af- 
ter, and my mother often said that surely there must 
be something in the old Albanoid superstition, or sign, 
at my birth, that I was to "Overcome-Triumph" or I 
could not so cheerfully take such responsibilities, as 
the looking after so dependent a company as we were 
then; but we worked on, mother was the central regu- 
lator, the girls went out with me into all kinds of work 
to which their strength was adapted. I had several 
young horses with which they amused themselves, in 
training them to be ridden, and they soon learned to 
drive a team, and took great delight in it. This saved 
me much time, and more was done during that season 
than if there had been a hired man. The spring of 
1853 was a good sugar year; the girls entered into the 
spirit of the work, and we did a goo<^l thing in the busi- 
ness; besides the abundant family supply, sold over i 
barrel of molasses at one dollar per gallon. 

But there was a dark day ahead for us that came 
net with crushing but heavy weight. My brother. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 107 

Alfred, had expected to move to Indiana in the near 
future, but suddenly had to flee for his life from the 
slave power. A companion of his early youth, a play- 
mate of his boyhood days, betrayed him as to the Un- 
derground Railroad business, and nothing but his cool 
courage saved his life — with the loss of all his prop- 
erty, he reached my home with his wife and two little 
children — cast down, overwhelmed, but not crushed 
nor wholly discouraged. Few can imagine our feel- 
ings when we all met around the table the first time 
after their arrival. The question came to our hearts 
as a dark temptation. Had the Lord forsaken us? 
Had we been following a false guide all these years? 
Had we been risking life, limb, honor, yea, and our 
very souls for an empty ideality ? Mother arose above 
it all and assured us that it was nothing but a passing 
cloud, and there would be sunshine beyond, yet we had 
still deeper proving. In a short time brother's wife, 
Mary Elizabeth, took sick, then their two little chil- 
dren, with a dangerous flux that was in the country, 
then my two children were taken, and we had five- 
bad cases of sickness in a small house. It was but a 
few days until my youngest child died, and 
the others seemed sinking rapidly. Brother's 
wife also grew worse and it, indeed, seemed 
like we were having more than we could bear; 
when we were alreadv at the point of breaking down. 



108 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

with overwork, anxiety and sorrow. Suddenly all 
began to slowly recover, and in a few weeks we sat in 
our little house with glad hearts and returning 
strength and courage. We now made common cause 
and resolved to live; there were several acres of dead 
ened timber ready to clear up, that would yield boun- 
tiful crops; after harvest was over we went into the 
deadening, and by taking advantage of dry weather, 
and steady hard work, soon surj)rised ourselves with 
what we did. Many times for a week we would work 
till 10 P. M., and then be out by daylight, for all the 
feeding was done after night and before day. The 
hai-d work that claimed our attention was not all at 
home, for the political elements were stormy around 
us. The old Whig party had been defeated and killed 
for all time at the presidential election of 1852, and 
the Freesoil Wilmot proviso movement was every- 
where growing rapidly; the haughty, insolent boast 
of the slave power, that they would carry slavery into 
all the territories was arousing the freemen of the 
north, and the "irrepressible conflict" was approach- 
ing a crisis. Brother and I were not silent listeners 
and lookers on, but were active, earnest workei*s, and 
were expected to lead in the new awakening public 
opinion. So with hard work and stirring political 
surroundings, there was little idle time in the house- 
hold. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 109 

I had beg-uii building a new house, and brother 
and I did mucli of the work by candle light, dressing 
and matching plank, making doors and windows, lay- 
ing floor, lathing, etc., often working to a late hour; 
this we did while keeping the crop and field work go- 
ing. It seemed absolutely necessary for us to be at 
the top of our speed all the time to keep from brooding- 
over brother's wrong, as well as to start him up again 
in independent support. 

When the new house was finished, it was thought 
best in mother's judgment that we should separate 
and make two families. Brother remained in the 
cabin, mother, I and the children went into the new 
house, but work did not cease, though in two fami- 
lies we were still one in purpose. 

To keep up the record of events, it will be in or- 
der to say that on the 13th of May, 1854, Ruth Hadley 
and I were married according to the order of Friends^ 
Church at Millcreek, Hendricks County, Ind. She- 
was cousin to father-in-law, Alfred Hadley, daugh- 
ter of Joshua and Rebecca Hadley. 

There had been a friendship between the two 
families since 1836, especially between her brother, 
Job, and me, who with his wife, Tracy Hadley, were 
among the first to come to my help when my wife died. 
Ruth Hadley was a school teacher of nine years' ex- 
perience, and was nOt afraid to marry an abolitionist. 



110 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

This j^ear, 1854, was one of the years that marked 
the beginning of a great revolntion, that has changed 
the moral sentiment of the whole civilized world. 

It will be remembered that on the 22nd da}' of 
January, 1852, Salmon P. Chase, Charles Sumner, 
senators; and Joshua E. Giddings, Edward Wade, 
Gerrit Smith and Alexander DeWitt, representatives 
in congTess, issued an appeal to the people of the 
United States, warning them of the intention of the 
slave power to repeal the Missouri compromise, and 
the extension of slavery into all the territories. Then 
began the '^'Irrepressible Conflict" in renewed intens- 
ity with dark threatenings and vindictive insolence on 
the part of the slave power. 

The Missouri compromise was repealed in 1851. 
On the 20th of June all the above named men to- 
gether with all the anti-slavery men in congress met 
in Washington, and sent forth another appeal to the 
people of the United States. The appeal was signed 
by Solomon Foot, as chairman, and David Mace and 
Reuben E. Fenton as secretaries. All parties op 
posed to slavery regardless of party names and partv 
preferences were called on to unite against the com- 
mon enemy. This appeal ran like lightning through 
all the northern states and territories, and the whole 
land was in a ferment of excitement, indignation anr! 
stern resolve; the sound of the fiT-st gun in the civil war 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. Ill 

did not produce half the excitement. At last the peo- 
ple were fully aroused to their danger, and the per- 
fidy of the slave power. 

The lirst response to this appeal came from Mich- 
igan. The abolitionists of that state met on the 6th 
of July at Jackson to discuss the situation. The sub- 
ject of forming a National pai-ty with a platform on 
which all people opposed to slavery could unite, was 
discussed at length and finally adopted; then the name 
of the party was discussed. ''Free Soil," "Free Dem- 
ocrat," "Freemen's Partv," ''Anti-slavery," and some 
others were proposed, but during the discussion John 
P. Hale sent a dispatch suggesting the name "Repub- 
lican," which was adopted unanimously, and then and 
there the great political revolution began. The 
watch-word was free speech, free soil, free labor, and 
free men, and the motto. "A union with all men for 
the sake of liberty." The platform adopted was the 
same as that of the freesoilers during the AVilmot pro- 
viso conflict, that resulted in the compromise of 1850, 
wnth the new issue of the repeal of the Missouri 
compromise and the extension of slavery. 

In five days the whole state of Michigan was 
ablaze with political excitement and never abated un- 
til the last gun of the rebellion was fired. Indiana 
was next in line. On July 13th a mass meeting was 
held at Indianapolis, at which the name "Republi- 



112 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

can'' was adopted bv acclamation, and the Michigan 
platform was adopted with a few local additions, and 
Indiana was ablaze with excitement. The pro-slaver}' 
Whigs joined the Democrats. The anti-slavery Dem- 
ocrats joined the Republicans, and the w^hole political 
elements were in violent motion, and in some locali- 
ties there was danger of an outbreak. The abolition- 
ists who had suffered insult, abuse, mob violence, 
brickbats and rotten eggs, were ready to retaliate with 
interest; but evei-y where wiser counsel prevailed. In 
a few weeks eleven northern states had come into line, 
and the revolution was complete and gave its last tri- 
umphant shout of victory at the fall of the rebellion 
at Appomattox in 1865. 

There is a disgusting as well as an amusing phase 
of humanity in recalling the stirring time from 181:8 
to 1865. Men who from 1844 to 1860 could not 
think of words vile and profane enough to express 
their opinions of abolitionists, when the Republican 
party became popular, suppressed the rebellion, freed 
the slaves, reconstructed the south, etc., began to use 
the term 'Sve" in all their jjolitical talk. "We" formed 
the Republican party, "we'' suppressed the rebellion. 
"We" did thus and so and all such talk, but in many 
cases my memory retained many of their old time vilo 
expressions, and even up to date I am cruel enough to 
make them turn red in the face with confusion and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 113 

shame by calling to mind what 'Sve" did do and say; nor 
were such characters confined to these old pro-slavery 
days, the land is full of them to-day, and "we" are still 
among the leading drones and dead weights in the 
community. Alack ! for humanity with all its frailty. 
This same Eepublican party that 1 helped form and 
support, which has done so much good, has degen- 
erated into a saloon, whiskey party, like the Whigs 
pandered to slavery. 

At this time central Indiana had advanced won- 
derfully in improvements, farms were opened, the 
dead trees and stumps were gone; nice, comfortable 
homes were built and as a greater sign of success and 
permanent gain, a multitude of large barns were being 
built every season; sometimes fifty men and boys 
would be at a barn raising, and there was no better 
place to learn the political opinions of the people; 
often two men would begin discussing the situation 
and someone would cry out "hold up," meaning stop 
work; "let's have a five minutes' speech," and all hands 
would listen to the talk for ten, fifteen, or twenty 
minutes, then the work would go on again, and it was 
surprising how much reading and thinking were done 
among the great mass of pioneers. The young people 
discussed the slavery subject at their literary and de- 
bating associations. Neighbors would meet neighbor 
on the way and exchange opinions, not so mu^*h in 



114 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

angiy partisan discussion, but in earnest anxiety to 
know what to do under the surrounding condition?. 
The little dry weather-beaten mail sacks carried by the 
postman across the country had to be oiled up and be- 
gan to look like wool sacks with the increase of mail 
matter. Men in some cases read more in one year 
than they had read in half a life-time before, and no 
one w^as astonished at the vote given for Freemont, the 
first Republican candidate for president in 1856. 

Amid all this intense excitement I could not be 
idle; home life had its necessities that called for un 
remitting exertion, and in the new political activity I 
was naturally thrown forward to do nmch of the hard 
work in talking at all the local contests. Everywhere 
and at all times I had caiise to be thankful that I had 
read the Bil le through when a boy,- and then had fol- 
lowed uj) by reading history connected with Bible 
events; this gave me an advantage over men far su- 
perior in education and natural ability. I had a small 
pocket Bible that became a terror to local politicians^, 
and many a by-stander would go home and for the first 
time set himself to reading the Bible, after listening 
to a Bible argument against slavery. 

So time went on with no relaxation from labor, 
or abatement of political excitement. The campaio^n 
of 1856, with, all its hurras and mass meetings, swear- 
ing, drinking, betting and monomania, the distort- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 115 

ed and exaggerated rumors of what the slave power 
was conspiring to do, kept things at white heat; the 
result of the presidential election of 1856 seemed to 
give assurance of victory in 1860, which added to the 
intensity of expectancy in coming events. 

On June l'3th, 1856, a son was bom to us, whom 
we named Job, after Job Hadley, and my favorit ; 
Uncle, Job (tiffin. P]mily''s children were U'anKuI 
Vestal, Trenmor and Miltoji. Vestal and Milton 
died. Trenmor now lives at Carson City, Nevada, 
an attorney-at-law and banker and is doing well. 

During the time between 1856 and 1860, there 
was great unrest in every part of social, political, re- 
ligious and domestic life. Xew thoughts seemed to 
suddenly come into the minds of every one. The agi- 
tation of the slavery question had opened out new 
channels of thought, and new powers of thinking, the 
invention of labor-saving machinery was also trans- 
forming every department of productive industry, 
and especially home life. The spinning and weaving 
of home-made cloth went out of use and the sewing 
machine came in. The mowing and reaping machine 
lessened by one-half the farm labor, the housewife wa5. 
released from half her toil, the men and boys rloing 
much that she and the girls formerly did. The 
farmer with the same labor doubled his yearly prod- 
ucts, and all had time to think; and the thinking was 



116 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

forming into questions. Why are all things as we 
find them? Is there not a better way? Hov,- much 
of our faith and belief is traditional, and not founded 
on principles of justice and judgment? In the 
churches the question was being asked, How much i? 
the tradition of the elders, and how much is from the 
Bible in our religion, belief and usage ? Everywhere, 
in every channel of thought, active minds were ex- 
ploring the surroundings. Especially was woman- 
hood beginning to ask the question: ^'Why such a dif- 
ference between man and wife, between son and 
daughter before the civil law ? Why is woman looked 
upon as inferior in all church matters ? Why pay ^\ o- 
men less wages than men for the same amouni of 
work?" 

In the midst of all this cA^olution and revolution, 
I was still working on the farm up to the limit of my 
strength, and was slowly gaining headway ; every year 
more land was cleared, the timber land sowed in grass 
adding to the pasture land. One favorite business 
was raising horses, and in time I had several young 
horses for sale each spring, and made more money at 
the business than any other. Connected with this 
horse business was a very amusing pastime, especialh 
for the neighbor boys, that of trainingcolts to be ridden, 
and gaited for travel. Being an expert imm youth in 
this art, it was mv custom to set an afternoon and in- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 117 

vite the boys to join in the exciting scene; and it can 
be said that we never failed in mastering by stratagem 
the wildest colts known. My plan was the more dan- 
gerous, but most sure; I always rode the wild colts with- 
out bridle, or halter, and had an enclosure from which 
they could not escape, by power of endurance, and 
agility let them completely exhaust themselves in try- 
ing to escape, or shake me off, and in time the boys 
caught the knack, and the result was that my colts always 
sold at a good price. In fifteen years I had sold a colt 
to every boy for miles around for when they wanted 
a horse to make a beginning, for as yet buggy and 
pleasure carriages were not in use, all people trav- 
eled on hoi-seback when going to church and on gala 
days and on journeys, traveling horses were in demand 
and sure sale. 

Again a cloud fell on the household. On June 
27 th, 1858, our little son. Job, passed away aged two 
years. This was peculiarly trying to my wife, being- 
her first born, and a child of unusual promise, and we 
had begun to hope for a life of usefulness. My son 
Trenmor had become strongly attached to his little 
brother, and talked much of what they would do when 
they were men. The loss of this brother had a 
marked effect upon his young mind, which he did nor 
forget, and it seemed to prove one of the way mark 
of his life, 



118 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

My brother had resumed the practice of medi- 
cine, and was making a success in business, was brave 
and strong again, and entered into all the excitement 
of everything pertaining to the slave power. Brother 
Emory had settled into successful business at Dun- 
reith, Ind., and was more quiet and mild in all his 
w^ays. We had also taJ^en a little niece into our fam- 
ily, who became as our own child, Euth Woodward, 
daughter of my wife's sister, Susannah Smith, who was 
married the second time to William Smith. 

In 1857, Western Yearly Meeting of Friends 
Church. was established at Plainfield, twelve miles 
from my home. It was set off from Indiana Yearly 
Meeting held at Richmond, Ind., and was a very large 
meeting from the beg-inning. Father Alfred Had- 
ley was one of the committee in charge of the locating 
and building a meeting house, and he always stopped 
with us going and coming from Plainfield, while the 
house was being built; a neighbor, Dr. James Kersey, 
was also one of the building committee, so I was toler- 
ably well informed of what was the mind of the active 
leaders of that day in the church, or ''The Religious 
Society of Friends" as then called, and the name un- 
der which the Yearly Meeting was incorporated. 

At that time the standard of wealthwaslow,whf*n 
comy)ared with the present standard; millionaires were 
almost unknown. A man worth $100,000 was the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 119 

highest standard of weahh; so the })ropositic)n to build 
a $12,000 meeting house seemed wonderful, and was 
discussed long and earnestly before it was approved; 
then it became a point of honor, and a spirit of enthus- 
iasm took possession of the members to build the 
grand, costly church. 

I entered warmly into the building spirit, and 
imagined, in advance, how nice it w^ould be to sit in 
the congregation^, in so grand a house, yet not once 
dreaming what w^ould be. my relation to that congre- 
gation in a few brief years. The first Yearly Meet- 
ing held was a sensational event in the community, 
and, was the largest religious meeting ever held in cen- 
tral Indiana; on the first Sabbath of its sessions there 
were 10,000 or more people in attendance, and up to 
the present time Quaker Yearly Meeting is a fixed 
thing in the calendar, and used as a mark of current 
events as occurring before or after, and year by year 
its influence for good has slowly become a power of no 
small moral and political interest. Its decisions on 
temperance, peace, social, educational, and economi- 
<'al questions has a deciding influence far and near. 

The establishing of Western Yearly Meeting, and 
the constantly intensifying agitation of the slavery 
subject, made the life current run at almost fever 
heat, the national awakening was something I had de- 
spaired of seeing, but the hope that slavery could be 



120 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

checked, then restrained and finally abolished in my 
day was so exciting to my excitable hopes that it is a 
wonder I was capable of carrying on my regular busi- 
ness. But for my wife's superior judgment and busi- 
ness ability I would have failed ; but I was in the prime 
of life and my early training had prepared me to meet 
what it seemed the Lord intended T should pas4 
through; nor did I have time to think of what migbt 
come, the present was so full of work that it required 
undivided attention. At this period events crowded 
upon me so fast that they will have to lye taken sep-, 
iirately though contemporary. 

In the early spring of 1860 T met my intimate- 
friend, Dr. Mark D. Stoneman, who was intensely 
alive to all the surroundings, and a foreseer of coming 
events. Among his first exclamations was th'ri, "We 
are riglit at the beginning of a furious civil war, I 
feel it in every bone and fiber of body, heart and mind. 
Let it come, I am ready, this generation will see the 
end of slavery, thank God." Of course his enthus- 
iasm awakened a sympathetic cord in my heart, and 
we prophesied until our reason called a halt, and we 
came to more sol>er things. 

The wonderful presidential campaign of I860 
has gone into history as one of the most intensely vio- 
lent of all our history, and resulted in the most fearful 
consequences of anything the world had seen for cen- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 121 

turies. Before it was over I found tliat T could not 
endorse the spirit of \aolence, crimination, recrimina- 
tion, threats of vielence and blood and destruction that 
were heard on evers' side, especially among the pro- 
slavery party. Before the day of election came it 
seemed to be a settled conviction that the slave power 
would fight if they lost the election, and the voice of 
the Republican party seemed ^Tight if you dare," and 
when the first gun was fired there was a secret thrill 
oi joy in the hearts of thousands who longed for an 
opportunity to avenge the insults received in the past 
from slave holders, and the slave power, and to this 
spirit belong many of the wanton acts of destruction 
of property in the slave states. 

When the war was really upon us with all il 
meant, and all that it ultimately WDuld bring about, 
the destruction of slavery, my neighlK)rs and the com- 
mimity were astonished to find me not only holding- 
back in the wild storm of patriotic indignation and 
cry of vengeance against the rebels, but actively op- 
jx)sing the war spirit, attributing it to pure love of op- 
•position, they resorted to threats of perscaial violence 
against me, and at one time an effort was made to or- 
ganize a mob. That I should oppose a war that would 
end slavery, against which T had been fighting all my 
life, was more than some people were willing to tol- 
erate. They could not understand that I looked upon 



122 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

all war as legalized murder, and that Christians could 
not approve, or support it. At one time there was a 
call for voluntary contributions to relieve the suffering 
of the soldiers in the army. The call was very popular 
and was universally responded to by all classes except- 
ing Job Hadley and myself, we decisively refused t<) 
contribute one cent in any form, or under any pre- 
tense. We were tried on the plea that it would be 
applied to assist the sick and wounded in the hospitals, 
etc., but all to no purpose, we were conscientious 
against all and every form of war. 

At one time the county commissioners levied a tax 
to pay bounties to men who volunteered in the armv ; 
this tax we also refused to pay, and it was not collected . 
Another form of contributing was for the support of 
the wives and children of the men in the army, and 
especially for the widows of those who lost their lives 
in the seiwice. All this we refused to pay, and we 
found ourselves antagonizing the opinions, and in 
some cases, incurring the hatred of many in the com- 
munity. We felt this keenly, but the Lord was with 
us in the midst of all our trial of faith, but as the war 
went on, and the very life of the nation seemed at 
stake, we found that we must adhere unflinchingly to 
our convictions of duty. 

There was one thing we found to do, and we did it 
faithfully without once thinking of l>eing credited for 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 123 

it. There were luaiiy poor widows and orphans not 
connected with the war, and in the intense excitement 
over military movements in the terrible conflict, thib 
class of the poor were entirely overlooked, and were 
suffering. To them we gave the haiidof help, and their 
heartfelt thanks more than repaid us. At the close oi 
the war, when the comnumity again settled down to 
real life, and accounts were cast up it was found that 
Job Hadley and I had done more in charity than any 
of the others, and we felt happier in having done so 
than they seemed to feel. 

Though not active in promoting and sustaining 
the war, I was not idle, nor wholly disconnected with 
it; many times I assisted parents in finding where their 
sons were stationed in the army, or where they had 
fallen; or in counseling how to get the remains 
brought home for burial, etc. Sometimes a more 
serious matter would come to light. Some poor boy, 
homesick and tired of the hardships and horrors of 
war, would come to me for help and advice, for it was 
impossible for him to remain long concealed, and the 
penalty for desertion was severe. Here was a trial of 
human sympathy. They who aided, or concealed de- 
serters w^ere alike guilty and had to suffer, but my ex- 
perience in underground railroad came to my help, 
and in every case the boy was saved from punishment, 



124 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and the odium of being a deserter, and served out Lis 
time. 

As war develops all the darker and stormier pas- 
sions of the human heart, so it was in our civil war, 
every fojm of sin, vice and crime became active and 
aggressive, one of which was ^ ^bounty jumping." Au 
unprincipled man Avould enlist in the army, draw the 
bounty, often $400, then desert, go to another place, 
enlist again, draw the bounty and desert; this got to be 
so intolerable that many were shot. One time I was 
at Indianapolis assisting in getting a boy released, who 
was drafted into the army; while there two ugly look- 
ing boimty jumpers were brought in under arrest for 
the crime ; they stoutly denied being deserters^ or hav- 
ing any money, and demanded a fair trial. I was 
standing not far away; the provost marshal called mo 
to come and see the fellows examined. Their coats 
were first inspected closely, then their vests, then they 
were required to strip off their pants, but still no 
money was found; then their underclothes, but the 
closest search found no money, but at last the provost 
marshal ordered their dirty socks to be taken off, th(3 
guard thrust his hand rather reluctantly into one cf 
them, but instantly his eyes brightenetl and when he 
drew out his hand it was full of greenback money. 
The money was handed over to the paymaster, and the 
men taken to the guardhouse; there was a dark, re- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 125 

vengeful look in their faces as they disappeared. 1 
never knew their fate, but give this as one of the events 
daily occurring at Indianapolis during the war. 

During 1868-64 there was not a farmer in Hen- 
dricks county whose parents or himself had emigrated 
from the South, but had one or more deserters froip. 
the Confederate army, or refugees from Southern 
conscription: especially was this the case from North 
Carolina and Tennessee, and they were of immen^^e 
.benefit to the- country in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, for 
they took the place of the men who had joined the 
Union army; nor w^as the benefit all on one side, the 
refugees received good wages, and when the war closed 
were better off in money at least than if there had 
been no war. 

At one time a company of 400 Confederate pris- 
oners were brought to Indianapolis from Louisiana. 
They were all of French descent, and had been farm 
laborers. They were not. rebels at heart, but were 
conscripted into the Southern army. Learning the 
wages farm hands received they wanted to w^ork. A 
contract for cutting Avood was found, and they were 
sent out under guard and did splendid work. In a 
short time all the guards but one w^ould disperse to 
have a good time. The prisoners needed no guard. 
Tliey were doing so well they would not even escape. 
Once wlien quitting time came the one guard was 



126 LIEE AND TRAVELS 

drunk and lliey carried him in. Finally they were 
suffered to hunt work anywhere, and only required 
to report at stated times. At the close of the war 
many of them settled in Indiana. These are incidents 
that came up, showing the under current of life that 
flowed on, while the war was raging in the South. 

After a lingering sickness and great suffering 
brother Alfred's wife, Mary Elizabeth C'offin, died 
October 15, 1860, leaving him with his two little girls 
in quite a helpless condition, so far as housekeeping 
was concerned, but events soon changed the whole 
situation. 

The latter part of 1862 he was called into the 
government service as. a physician, to take charge of 
the refue-ee Indians in Southern Kansas. At the 
breaking out of the rebellion a part of the Indians in 
Indian territory remained loyal and were driven from 
the territors' and took refuge in Kansas and claimed 
and received government protection. Cousin William 
G. Coffin w^as appointed superintendent of those 
refugees, and he called brother to take charge of the 
medical department. On Xew Year's day, 1863, he 
started for his place of service, leaving his two chil- 
dren with my wife, who was to have care of them; 
this she did until they grew to womanhood. In tho 
meantime my niece, Miriam A. Henley, married Wil- 
liam . Thomas,, of. Wayne county, Ind., and they 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 127 

moved into brotlicr's house, so as to cultivate the farm 
while he was gone. 

Finding his position in Southern Kansas a very 
dangerous one, my brother returned home in June to 
make a more satisfactory arrangement for business. 
Brother Emory met him by appointment, intending 
to go to Kansas with him, but in a few days brother 
Alfred was taken with erysipelas, and was dangerously 
ill, and it required all the care and skill possible to 
save him. While he was yet feeble William Thomas 
and brother Emory took the same disease in a mora 
violent form. On the morning of July 4th William 
Thomas died, and the same evening brother Emory 
passed away. This was a trial to heart and strength. 
We were all worn with waiting and watching, and 
some of the neighbors were afraid of the disease, which 
added to our trial. It was a dark time with us, but my 
wife's undoubting faith and prayers kei^t us from fail- 
ing. William Thomas was buried at Spring burial 
ground nearby; brother Emory was taken home toDuu- 
reith and buried at Spiceknd, Ind. As soon as able 
Alfred returned to his post, and we were left with new 
responsibilities and new soitows. Though (;are was 
increased and the way seemed to darken before us, the 
Lord gave us stmngth, an<l in the midst of that dark- 
ness, there came to me a vision of hope and assurance 
that reached beyond the present, on to the srmshinc 



128 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

beyond the war. jSTone beside my wife, mother and 
Job Hadley were ready to hear and receive. We had 
the faith, and time brought the sunshine and the end 
was seen, but ere it came other stirring scenes crossed 
our path that called the mind in part away from the 
coming end. 

To make coming events intelligent, it is necessary 
to go l>ack to the situation in Indiana during the war; 
as previously stated, there were many hundreds of 
refugees and deserters from the Confederate army in 
the StMe, those refugees had left families and friends 
whom they wanted brought to Indiana. There ^vas 
also an emancipated colored man near my home whose 
wife and children had been slaves; now that they were 
free he wanted them to come to him. This colored 
mail and several refugees employed me to go to ^N'orth 
Carolina and bring their folks out to them, and the 
time to go was soon after the close of We-stern Yearly 
Meeting. Now, when it was known I was going south, 
there was much comment among many people, who 
said the Lord in mercy was sending me away to die, 
that my family might be spared from seeing the judg- 
ment that was to strike me down. They little knew 
what was in my heart, and what the Lord had prom- 
ised. 

The trip was made, but I had much trouble with 
the former owner of the slaves, who at first refused to 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 129 

suffer them to be taken out of the State, for he in com- 
mon with other slave-holders had a secret belief that 
slavery would be restored, or they would get pay for 
their slaves, but he was out generaled, and I returned 
to Indiana with a company of fifty passengers, mostly 
women and children. 

This trip to North Carolina proved to be the l>e- 
ginning of my new life work. 

The winter of 1867-68 I made a trip to the Island 
of Nantucket to see the home of my American an- 
cestors on my father's side; the route traveled was by 
Philadelphia,New York, sound steamer to Providence, 
railroad to Boston and to Hienas, then by steamer to 
the island. Groing out the trip was very pleasant, until 
leaving the port of Hienas; from there it was very 
rough, a heavy gale was blowing and it was (|uite cold. 
On arriving I sought out relatives of my name, and was 
kindly entertained, and si>ent two weeks looking at old 
ancestral relics, examining the library, museum, the 
Coffin college, the city schools, the old windmill on the 
hill, and had a good social time with the people. 

Keturning from the island, two days were spent 
in Boston visiting the celebrated historic places in the 
vicinity, then two days in New York viewing its spe- 
cialties, and none were more interesting than Central 
Park. At that day it was a marvel of beauty to my 
wondering eyes. 



130 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Two or three (lavs were spent in I^hiladelphia 
very pleavSantly, then the home run began. When 
Hearing Lancaster, Pa., I was thinking of what the 
Lord was doing for nie, and why one so utterly un- 
Avorthy shoiild receive such mercy^ when, in a moment 
of time, ^'that voice again'' spoke in my heart with 
fearful distinctness, ''It is finisheil, henceforth thou 
art as other men." In another moment it seemed a 
horror of ^-reat darkness suddenly fell upon me, and it 
was so fearful that I doubted- whether I could live. 
For an hour or more my"condition was more depressing 
than when lying on the gTass at Plainfield, and I was 
ready to cry out to be released from such agony, when 
as suddenly as it came, the great darkness vanished, 
and a still small voice said, ''Thy life is in thy own 
hands, as thy conduct, so shall it be unto thee," and the 
glad light and life again filled my humbled and thank- 
ful soul, yet the transition from the days of safety back 
to ordinary life was not without its vivid contrast. 

After returning home I worked on the farm until 
June, when one of the laud agents of the Missouri, 
Kansas and Texas railroad came to see me in regard to 
sending emigrants to Kansas to settle on the railroad 
lands, and he offered to take me to Kansas to examine 
the outlook for settlers. I soon arranged my business 
and was on the way, going by St. Louis and Sedalia, 
Mo.; the land office was then at Xeosho Falls, Kan. 



0^ ADDISON COFFIN. 181 

From that point Iwas sent out to tlie. South and West 
across the wide, unoccupied praiiie seventy to eighty 
miles, until every part of my body was in pain with the 
rough driving; part of the drive was through the mag- 
nesium limestone belt and very rocky. Returning to 
Neosho Falls, I was taken to Emporia, and from there 
driven far Up Cottonwood river and out to the Hog- 
backs towards the Arkansas river, coming back by 
Plymouth; here, in and around Emporia, I met many 
of my old friends and church members, who were 
anxious and curious to know all about my contest with 
the chnrch, and it had all to be talked over many 
times. 

The next point was Council Grove, from where 
another long trip was made westward ; then returning 
to the railroad and bein^- nearly worn out, I went to 
my brother Alfred's at Le Hoy, to rest. In this explor- 
ation I saw much of the heart of Kansas, for beside this 
vehicle travel, after resting a few days, I took quite 
an extensive run on the railroads, for they all very 
readily gave me passes everyw^here, and it was only a 
question of ^Hime," when, or in what direction my 
business, or curiosity called that put a limit to my 
ttavel. One ride will not be forgotten, from Sedalia, 
Mo., to Parsons in Southern Kansas; it was done on 
top of a caboose car, so the ^aew would l>e unbroken on 
all sides; it was grand and inspiring; so much so that 



132 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

sleep was impossible the next night. In fact, there 
was but little sleeping done for a week; it was full 
moon, and the night riding was as grand as by day. 
Nearly all the trip was accomplished in this way until 
Kansas was graven in my memory as boundaries on 
an atlas. 

When this journey was over it w^as nearly time 
for Western Yeaj'ly Meeting, w^hen I should be ''like 
other men/' and there was some anxiety as to how 
things might turn. There was a rumor abroad that 
another attempt would be made to put me out by force, 
but when the meeting came, the spirit had softened 
towards me ; my sudden and wonderful success in emi- 
gration and traveling had satisfied all that 1 was not 
a doomed man. When the caretakers met the idea of 
putting me out was rejected, and I was respectfully re- 
quested to withdraw and then recorded^ as an intruder. 
Carrying this subject forward to its end in the Yearly 
Meeting, the next ye^r the caretakers notified me that 
they were not going to report me as an intruder, in- 
timating that it was getting rather too much of a load 
for the meeting to can-y. and my name was no more 
mentioned in the meeting until I was a delegate from 
Plainfield Quarterly Meeting. 

Note — Several references throughout the work to the deep trials and* 
almost marvelous experiences of a somewhat prolonged struggle in his 
own monthly meeting require a word of explanation. The account of 
this period was written with hesitation and only at the urgent request 
for his " whole life." Now remembering his seeming reluctance, we 
withhold these pages from publication, simply saying that whatever the 
merits in the case may have been there was left no bitterness in the 
spirit of him who must have suflfered most. 



CHAPTEK FOURTH. 



North Carolina Emigi'ation — Incidents of 1866 in 
Connection With That Exodus — Opening Excur- 
sions to North Carolina — Opening up Excursions to 
Other Points — The Beginning- of More Extensive 

Explorations. 

Going back to spring of 1866, it is necessary to 
say that unexpectedly the einigTation business sud- 
denly presented itself to me, and in a way that was 
rather startling, both in magnitude and responsibility, 
but there came a satisfying assurance into my heart 
that all should go well, and not one hair of the heads of 
those under my care should be harmed. It was a new 
and strange, yea, a fearful sensation to be free from 
the ^'law of death," and it was still more astonishing 
to know that others were to be in like condition while 
in my care. I did not feel that it was my work, but 
the work of a higher power, that it was mv part to be 
as a dutiful child in tlie hands of a kind Father. AVith 
9 (133) 



134 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

this feeling, and under this influence, the wonderful 
work of 1866 began. 

The fii*st company of emigrants went west in 
March, and was made up largely of men and boys, 
about one hundred in all. The April company in- 
creased to two hundred, and was a surprise to the citi- 
zens of Greensboro; it was at least half women and 
children. The May company still increased in num- 
bers, and the larger part were women and children, 
most of them the families of refugees; by this time the 
business began to attract attention at both ends of the 
line of travel. There was also much trouble in hand- 
ling the baggage, for it was in every form and shape, 
from a regular trunk, down through boxes, bales, bun- 
dles, to old fashioned saddle-bags and pockets, resem- 
bling a double havervsack. The railroads would not 
<:'heck half the unwieldy luggage; to meet the difficulty 
I had tag's printed and numbered. A tag was attached 
to every piece of baggage and the number written in a 
l>ook, so I could identify them; this was a success, and 
the railroads agreed to transport, though sometimes it 
would look impossible to bring order out of a confused 
lieap, or carload of my emigrant baggage. The June 
■eompanv numbered over 300, nearly all women and 
children, and at starting many predicted that I would 
not get so helpless a party through, but they did not 
3<:now the unseen power that was supjwrting me, and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 135 

guarding the emisfrants. The business was now ex- 
citing fi:en'eral attention ; tho raih-oads realized that new 
aiTangements would have to be made to accommodate 
the travel and carry the bagg'ag'e. I saw the necessity 
of having through emigrant tickets, special baggage 
cars, and the emigrant cars attached to the rear of the 
trains, etc., etc. This was soon accomplished, and emi- 
grant tickets were made from Greensboro to fourteen 
points in the Northwest, in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, 
Iowa, Missouri and Kansas. 

By this time the business had assumed large pro- 
portions, in fact, ''very" large in the imagination of 
those not intimately acquainted with it. Railroads in 
the West having land grants sent agents and passes to 
me to solicit me to send some of my emigrants to settle 
their lands. People in Xorth Carolina thought I 
owned the train that took the parties West, and manv 
boys and young men applied for a chance to work' 
their passage West, and some even wrote to me asking 
for ompiovment as locomotive engineers. All through 
North Carolina, Coffin^s emi2:rant train became almost 
a fixed institution, and in spite of all my explanations, 
was not rightly understood by any but the railroad 
managers, some of whom have manv amusing memor- 
ies of the uncouth and untrained crowds that filled 
some of the cars. The devastation of the war had left 
the country threadbare in every sense, and many of the 



186 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

emigrants looked and were &o; added to this tlieir 
eager, anxious wondering countenances, when they 
realized thev had found Coffin's train, often made a 
picture to be remembered. 

From June the companies increased until they 
made a train load. Through July, August and Sep- 
tember the women and children outnumbered the men 
and boys two to one, and my w^ork, care and responsi- 
bility increased almost l>eyond my ability to manage; 
sometimes twenty different persons in the Xorthwest 
would send money to bring families and relatives to 
them, and very often there was not enough money 
sent, and I was called on for help; in this way I paid 
out much of my earnings, and rarely ever received a 
return. Many times there were mothers with four to 
six children going to husband and friends. They had 
never traveled l)efore, and they were full of anxiety 
about their safety, and still more concerned as to hoAv 
they were to know where to stop and what to do when " 
they stopped; to some it was difficult to understand 
how I could know when and where to put so many peo- 
ple off, and tell them what to do. With several hun- 
dred passengers of this kind, it was a severe tax on my 
jK>wer of endurance, and often there was no chance to 
get any sleep between Baltimore and Indianapolis. At 
the latter place my obligation ended, after seeing all 
on the diverging trains, though I had fre(juently to go 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 137 

to St. Louis, Lafayette and other points to look after 
misplaced baggage. My checks were always canceled 
at Indianapolis. 

There was much excitement at Greensboro the 
latter part of the year about so many people leaving 
the state and taking so much money away from the 
business entei'jirises that were contemplaterl. Many 
refugees had left debts behind, and now their families 
^yere leaving there was less hope than ever of a settle- 
ment. Many absconding debtors took advantage of 
the opportunity to get their families off wdth me, while 
they went by private roads overland. One effort was 
made to break up my business by having me arrested 
for aiding absconding debtors in leaving the state, but 
I had taken the precaution to gain the protection of the 
military commander of the state, and I had authority 
t-o take all who interfered with me to Kaleigh to the 
military headquarters. Wlien this was known in 20 
minutes the parties gave up all thought of stopping 
me and were ever after silent. 

In September, October and ^N'ovember there were 
five to seven hundred souls each: time, and the train 
and the change from rail to steamer at Portsmouth 
was the beginning of wonders to both emigrants and 
bystandei-s, then the march from the landing to raiL 
road station, through the city of Baltimore was the 
crowning w^onder and a great novelty to the emigrants ; 



138 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

all was amusement and delight; to the citizens it was a 
procession so singular that hundreds came out to see 
the apparition. The primitive homespun dress, the 
anxious excited looks, and the odd bundles and packs 
that nearly all carried w^as both intenselv interesting 
and amusing. There was much trouble to keep them 
from straggling in the march, but in time the police 
force became vigilant in looking after stragglers and 
returning them to the station before our departure. 
At the different stations there w^as often much trouble 
in preventing a rush and a panic ; everv one would be- 
come excit-ed lest he should be left, or fail to get a seat. 
After the train started it often took several houre to get 
all satisfactorily seated, families together, companies 
of neighbors grouped together, the aged and infinn 
comfortably situated, and last, but not least, to make 
the mean and selfish boys behave, though I can say to 
the credit of the emigrants, that there were very few 
who did not conduct themselves in an honorable way 
while in my care, for I had authority in the South to 
enforce good behavior, and by common consent it was 
extended through the Xorthwest, vet it was not called 
in question, or necessar)' to use but once. On landing 
at Indianapolis, a dnmken fellow knocked a woman 
down and pushed auother with a babe in her arms 
over backwards, and was using vile language, when 1 
called to him to desist. Then he rushed at me with 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 139 

terrible oaths, but I caught him by the throat and be- 
gan shutting off his profanity. A violent struggle fol- 
lowed. Though he wat? much the stronger man I was 
diligent to business until a policeman came to my re- 
lief, and the brutal fellow^ was punished. This whole 
affair w^as over in a little time, le^s than it takes to 
write it, yet it had a good effect, for it became known 
along and at both ends of the line of travel, that I made 
people behave themselves while traveling with me. 

When the work of 1866 was ended, ten trips had 
been made between Indianapolis, Ind., and Greens- 
boro, N. C, over 5000 emigrants had left North Caro- 
lina and South Virginia. The travel was from Greens- 
boro via Raleigh and Weldon, N. C., to Portsmouth, 
Va., by bay steamers to Baltimore, and thence by 
Baltimore and Ohio railroad and Pennsylvania Cen- 
tral railroad via Columbus, Ohio, to Indianapolis, 
Indiana. From there they were distributed by six 
railroads to various points. This circuitous route had 
to be made on account of the arbitrary rates demanded 
bv the Richmond ( Va.) and Danville railroad. The 
result of the year's work was a surprise to everybody 
but my wife, who saw and felt from the beginning that 
the Lord was in it, and that I was leading a life for two 
years above the law^ of death, while others looked upon 
it as a wonderful achievement on my part. '^We'' un- 
derstocKl 'Svho" %vat; upholding me, but n(> one was 



140 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ready to receive it. I had never shown myself to be 
much above my neighboi^ in any way, and quite in- 
ferior in some, and to have claimed that the Lord was 
using me as a special instrument would have been more 
than the community would have accepted, so with 
hearts full of gratitude for all that was done for us we 
were '^still." 

There was one incident that occurred on the No- 
vember trip that will illustrate our feeling. My wife 
accompanied me on that trip, to be at N'orth Carolina 
Yeaidy Meeting. On the return trip, there were sev- 
eral old and infirm }>eople, who were trying to get their 
children out West. They were so feeble they had to be 
carried in a chair when changes were made. To 
ordinary people it looked not only hopeless, but a 
dangerous undertaking. It made the trainmen nerv- 
ous to see them. Strange to say, they not only stood 
the journey, but got stronger. After leaving Balti- 
more a child that had l>een ailing was taken suddenly 
ill and was pronounced dying, and the parents and 
many of the passengers wanted the train stopped, so 
it could be taken off and cared for, but I refused. This 
created intense excitement; even my wife plead for the 
child to be let off, saying-, 'Tt will die here." With 
quite an excited company around me I said, ''This 
child 'cannot die' while in my care ; if you take it off 
death is certain." Instantly that well-known bright 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 141 

light shone in my wife's face; she (quietly said, ''Give 
me the child," then taking it in her arms held it close 
to her for more than an hour; then it seemed to relax 
and went to sleep, and from that moment began to 
improve. The parents went to Emporia, Kan., and the 
child grew to healthv womanhood. ''That" removed 
all doubts from our minds. 

The latter part of December I returned to Greens- 
boro and went to Columbia, S. C., and extended the 
emigrant rate to Greenville in that state, where there 
were several hundred people who wished to go West 
but there was much opposition to it; many seemed to 
be alarmed at the thought of so many white people 
lea\dng the state, lest the freed slaves should domineer 
the whole state, for out of the 5000 emigrants who had 
gone not more than 150 were I^egroes; but opposition 
was no new thing, and the emigrants left Granville 
like other places, but unlike many others they pushed 
into Iowa, Nebraska and even to Minnesota. 

In 1867 I made four trips, though small parties 
of 25 to 50 went through alone. The business had now 
become so well organized tliat it was no trouble for 
small parties, as they were given the regular emigrant 
rate of $21 from Greensboro to Indianapolis, and in 
the same proportion to other points. This was about 
half first-class fare. 

In 1868 I made two trips, and in 1870 took an 



142 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

excursion to North Carolina Yearly Meeting, which 
was a success, and was the beginning of a business as 
unexpected as the emigration. AVhen the party re- 
turned they ^ave such striking descriptions of the ef- 
fects of the war, that hundreds who had emigrated 
years before now wanted to revisit their old homes and 
scenes of childhood. To meet this new want I ne- 
gotiated at regular excursion rates, and soon, like the 
emigration, it assumed large propc>rtions, and from 
1872 to 1880, three to five hundred excursionists 
would go each year, and a large company of emigrants 
would return with me, and it became almost a regular 
thing for excursionists to take home with them a boy 
or girl to help on the f ann and in the house. Cousins, 
nephews, nieces, tMuys and girls left without a home 
in consequence of the war, were usually the ones se- 
lected to be taken. In this way the emigration con- 
tinued until about 1880, when it measurably ceased to 
attract attention, but the excursion business kept right 
on up to the present day, but there was this change, 
instead of one party, there were two and three each 
year; always one at Yearly Meeting time. In addition 
to the Carolina excursions, there was soon a demand 
for excursions to the border states to see the vast prair- 
ies of the West, and to Iowa and Kansas Yearly Meet- 
ing's, which also assumeKl large proportions, and at 
length I found myself identified with a wide expanse 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 143 

of business, and cpiite a. traveler, all of which had come 
to me almost nncons<*ionsly. 

When the wonderful spirit of expansion took pos- 
session of the nation, I found myself in it without 
knowing why. People wishing to emigrate to Ivansas, 
Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, Dakota, Colo- 
rado, et<!., etc., applied to me to get emigrant rates and 
freight ears for their property. I went on exploring 
trips, first into the nearer border states, then on to the 
Pacific coast. While the Northern Pacific railroad 
was building, an exploration trip was made through 
Dakota, Montana and Idaho to the Columbia, to see 
the vast region opened up in that direction. I had un- 
limited time and stop-over >irivile^es, which were used 
to see as wide a range as possible. I stopped off at way 
stations, large and small places out on the mde plain 
where there was nothing but earth, grass and sky in 
fifty miles, where men w^ere hunting and staking off 
land claims, living in small tents and in large diy-goods 
boxes turned down on one side, in every form of shelter 
ingenuity could devise, all full of life and hope. In 
many places the whole plain w^as checkered with deep- 
ly-worn buffalo trails, and as far as the eye could see 
sprinkled white wath their bones, which were being 
gathered in enormous heaps along the railroad for 
shipment east. 

At Jamestown, N. D., I went up the Devil lake 



144 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

branch of the road past where the town of Camngton 
now stands, out into the unexplored, unsurveyed and 
then ahnost unknown. Everywhere there was the 
vast unbroken, limitless expanse of sky and grass, with 
a soil capable of limitless production, and I realized 
that I was in the vast wheat field that is to bread the 
world. Then I passed the Bad Lands, or Hell Put Out, 
as the cowboys call it, where has been a lake of boiling 
molten matter, and suddenly an ocean of water has 
been jx)ured into it. It is beyond the power of man 
to imagine the fearful commotion that would follow, 
but there before and around us is the result; great hills, 
mounds, ridges and almost mountains of cinder, scoria, 
volcanic rocks and vitrified matter thrown, whirled 
and contorted into a thousand shapes, literally a place 
of utter desolation and desolate forever. The material 
af which those mounds and hills are formed is so loose 
that it is nearly impossible for man or animal to climb 
them, nor does any one feel much desire to try the ex- 
periment. 

Though the scene is interesting and full of sug- 
gestive speculation, yet few wish to linger long amid 
such terrible surroundings. Passing on across a 
broken rolling country with alternate, beautiful grassy 
valleys and rock^^ barred ridges, we finally reach the 
Yellowstone river and valley, which has long been a 
wonder land, and in recent years become of all lands 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 145 

of the (^arth the UK»st wonderful, since the National 
Park is now accessible. To get a clear, intelligent 
view of the valley, I rode the entire length on top of a 
caboose car, with a good glass by which the whole 
valley and adjacent plains were brought under re- 
view. The valley proper is about 400 miles long; the 
river is a strong, rapidly flowing stream, navigable 
much of its distance in spring and summer, while the 
snow is melting on the mountains. This valley is very 
fertile, and destined to be of vast importance in the 
future; there is unlimited water power, and it is near 
the center of the great wheat field of the world, and be- 
fore another generation passes the now world-wide 
celebrated Minneapolis mills will be dwarfed by the 
mills of the Yellowstone river. 

To the south of the valley can be seen on a large 
scale one of the unaccountable geological phenomenon 
that baffles scientific speculation. There is an ex- 
tensive level plain, covered with luxuriant grass, which 
presents such an appearance as to lead one to believe 
that the entire plain had once been 80 to 100 feet 
higher than now, and that three-fourths of it had sud- 
denly sunk down, leaving the other one-fourth stand- 
ing in irregular hills, mounds and ridges, and some- 
times there are hundreds of almost columns standing 
thick like huge trees; to add to the wonder, the top's 
of all those hills and ridges are perfectly level and hori- 



146 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

zontal with the plain, and the rock strata in them is also 
horizontal and undisturbed by the sinking of the plain, 
or their being ''thrust up" by volcanic action. One 
day this will be a land of romance and beauty to the 
now far-off noisy rushing world. These singular 
plains are very fertile, with unlimited facilities for ir- 
rigation. 

A short stop was made at Big Horn river to ex- 
amine that rich and promising valley. There were a 
dozen families in tents, the wives and children, while 
the husbands were off up the valley locating home- 
steads. Here was one of the beautiful pictures of our 
American home life and nation building; here were 
cheerful, sweet-faced mothei's in the prime of life, with 
families of bright girls and boys, away from civiliza- 
tion, away from home camforts, in the midst of an al- 
most unknown region and wild, rugged mountains, 
ready to brave the dangers and privations of pioneer 
life. Here I cannot refrain from adding what I saw 
after fifteen yeai-s had passed. The eye could hardly 
believe the vision that opened before it. That Big 
Horn valley w^as a vast expanse of beautiful fields, 
dotted all over with fine homes; the mothers' heads 
were turning gray, but the sweet look was still in their 
smiling eyes; and above all their girls and boys had 
grown to noble man and womanliood, and were making 
glad the now bright and prosperous valley. This is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 147 

but one of hundreds o£ such scenes I have witnessed in 
twenty-five years, some of which cannot fade from 
memory. 

From the YeHowstone valley we cross the Boze- 
man range of the Rcx^kies, and come out into the 
Gallatin valley, ''which" after all I have seen of other 
lands still remains "beautiful" among many pleasing 
memories. The valley is about sixty miles long and 
fifteen wide, completely surrounded with high moun- 
tains, the summits of some of them so grouped to- 
gether, that they form a charming and impressive pic- 
ture. To the northeast is th-e celebrated Flat Head 
pass, where the mountain range is cleft to the very 
base with a grand view, not only through the range, 
but to the wide region beyond. Baron Humboldt 
passed through this cleft in his wonderful travels dur- 
ing the past generation. About thirty years ago a se- 
cession of several hundred Mormons came to this val- 
ley and planted themselves near the Bozeman, and by 
their skill in in^gation and industry were soon sur- 
rounded with fertile fields and pleasant homes, so that 
the place became a resting spot for wanderei-s through 
that unoccupied region. N'ear the west end of the val- 
ley lived a singular man named Frank Dunbar, from 
^orth Carolina, who had been there twenty-one years, 
and had devoted most of his time to raising horses, but 
all the time believed that s<jmething would "happen 



i48 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

for liirn" and ''that" valley; so when the Xorthern 
Pacific railroad came to him and built the town of 
Gallatin on his land it did "happen." 

A short distance from Gallatin, the three rivers, 
Gallatin, Madison and Jefferson meet and form the 
Missouri. This point is destined to become historic, for 
here Gaptains Lewis and Clark spent the winter of 
1804 and 1805 on their celebrated exploring expedi- 
tion from St. Louis to the Pacific. A\Tiile standing 
near the spot I could but think how impossible it 
would have been to have convinced them that inside of 
16 years that place would be c»ccupied by white people 
and a railroad, a thing then not thought of, ninning 
close by that camping place in the heart of an un- 
known region. Nor did I, when a boy, while reading 
the narrative of Lewis and (^lark and Casse's Journal, 
then used as a school reader, ever "dream" that I 
would stand on the same ground in the van of civiliza- 
tion that has now covered the continent, but the facts 
were before me, and it filled my wiind with inexpress- 
ible delight and enjoyment. The scene around was 
grand and inspiring, independent of history, but when 
nature and history united there, was a greater interest 
to river, mountain, rocks and sun lit valley, and so 
another i)icture was added to the tablet of memory. 

What lies, beyond that point more properly be- 
longs to the Pacific coast, and we will turn back and re- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 149 

view the country as coming from the west. During the 
outward journey many of the mountain ranges were 
still covered with snow, now (about May 20th) the 
lower ranges were uncovered, and all the streams were 
in full tide, and the June flood of the Mississippi was 
on its way to the gulf, and among the mountains and 
hills, there was heard the sound of many waters, ra- 
vines and fforges were raging fearful torrents, which 
were dry three months later; logs were being floated 
down from the hills where soon would be no water in 
sight. All this gave continued interest to all the sur- 
roundings. 

When we returned into the Yellowstone valley 
again it was full of new entertainment, new features 
presented themselves at every turn ; the western slopes 
of the hills and mountains, in many places, showed 
new geological phenomena; there were traces of vol- 
canic action unseen from eastward; everywhere was 
the eroding mark of great torrents of water at higher 
levels than the valley of to-day ; the twisted and con- 
torted strata showed a succession of volcanic activity 
that would be deeply instructive to observing scien- 
tists and amateur geologists. There was also much 
that was interesting in the signs of rural life; hun- 
dreds of white tents and pole cabins were seen along 
the river bank and small streams, and out on the broad 
valley were hundreds of plowmen turning up the 
10 



150 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

deep, rich, alluAial soil for the first time since the 
world beg^ii. Around the tents and cabins were signs 
of home life; the garden, with chickens enjoying the 
warm sunshine amid their new sun*oundings, while 
near by was a cow tethered to a stake, feeding on the 
fresh, luxuriant grass. 

Sitting on the caboose, all these things passed like 
a magic panorama; even the people seemed as though 
they too were moving and acting in a new world. 
Sometimes the little children would stop their play^ 
to look at some new shade of light that fell upon 
the mountains, or was reflected from the chalk cliffs 
that shone in the clear sunlight. The first advancing 
tide of humanity and Christian civilization had 
reached those far-oft" lands, where in the near future 
millions would throng, and cover that strange, ro- 
mantic region.. Who knoAvs but in the coming time 
the Yellowstone Valley may be to the great, new 
northwest what the Valley of the Euphrates was to 
Western Asia in the ages gone? It is in the center 
of a broader land, w4th almost limitless capabilities. 

The return across the great plain to Fargo and 
the Red River of the IsTorth was more interesting than 
the outward trip. My comprehension seemed to 
gTasp more fully our wonderful resources as a nation, 
and our marvelous outlet for expansion. Right here 
Ave had a gTeat extent of wheat-producing soil that 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 151 

was capable of providing bread for the whole world. 
I stopped off at the stations and on the wayside to talk 
with the pioneers, and I could draw out a recital of 
their hopes, ambitions, and aspirations. My own 
experience in early life, and the taste of pioneer life 
in Indiana, enabled me to speak to and sympathize 
with every condition, while learning everywhere the 
wonderful lesson, how the Lord was leading and gTiid- 
ing the nation-builders here on the vdde plains, 
yonder in a beautiful valley, and still beyond among 
the giant mountains, as out-posts and beacons of the 
coming tide of humanity. It was wonderful, won- 
derful, wonderful. 

A short stop was made at Minneapolis, Minn., 
among my California friends ; also a day in Iowa, then 
on -home, where my neighbors and friends eagerly 
awaited my re|x>rt, for the spirit of emigration was 
in the land, and thousands w^ere looking forward to 
joining the great overland emigTation. I wrote a 
series of articles for the '^Indiana Farmer," and other 
papers; also answ^ered many letters of inquiry as to 
the result of mv northwest trip, which seemed to give 
satisfaction, and the tide of emigTation flowed with 
increased activitv in that direction. 



CHAPTER FIFTH. 



Crushed Beneath a Loaded Wagon — Fearful Suffer- 
ing — Called Back From Death — Angel Visitants 
— Recovery Miraculous. 

To keep the cuiTent of events in hamionv with 
my onward narrative, it will be necessary to give some 
important domestic occurrences, which had an influ- 
ence on all subsequent movementii. In the early 
spring of 1880, I was crushed by a heavy, loaded 
wagon in such a way that all my ribs but two were 
broken, my breast badly mashed, and my right 
shoulder broken. When the wagon passed over me 
the pain was so fearful that I thought it would be 
impossible for me to live. Raising up, I felt a strange, 
swimming sensation, as if slowly rising up into the air. 
This seemed so real that I looked towards the bam 
near by to see if it was really true that I was going 
away ; but things all seemed fixed, and almost instantly 
there came a sudden hush around, and a real sinking 
(152) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 153 

sensation that was of such a character that I felt that 
death was at hand, as the human mind is capable of 
working and thinking with lightning ^eed in emer- 
gencies. As I felt I conld live bnt a few moments, 
I thought of vnle and daughter, who were in the 
house not far away; and that they might know that 
I was conscious to the last, I folded my arms and 
laid down, saying, '*And this is death; how simple 
and easy a thing it is to die," and I was carried away. 
When consciousness returned wife and daughter were 
lifting me up, but there was a sensation of suffoca- 
tion that was terrible, with a rack of agonizing pain; 
but as they lifted me up the broken spines of my ribs 
that had been forced into my lungs withdrew, and 
breath came to me once more. 

I was taken to the house in gi'eat pain, such as 
language cannot describe. As soon as they got me 
on a bed, my daughter started for a doctor, over a 
mile away. Inside of forty minutes she was back 
again, and in a few seconds the doctor, a strong, 
active man, came in out of breath. It was de<^ided 
by him that I could not live many hours, and all that 
could be done was to give me chloral to relieve my 
intense suffering. This was done, and at the end of 
eight hours I still lived, but had to take large fjuan- 
tities of chloral. And so it went for three days, do<'- 
tor, neighbors and friends said I could not live. My 



154 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

body was so badlv crushed and internal bleeding had 
been so profuse that it did seem there was no hope; 
but wife said: ''I cannot give him up; he must not, 
cannot, shall not die." Her devotion and faith were 
very touching to all, who were very kind in helping 
her and daughter; so I continued to suffer untold 
agony day by day, with no attempt to give any exam- 
ination or set the broken bones. I, as well as all 
others, knew that any effort of that kind would result 
in instant death. At the end of three weeks my pains 
had not abated, and hope began to gTOw dim; with- 
out relief death would soon come. One afternoon 
when it seemed as though the pain was too great for 
me to bear longer, a feeling similar to that at first 
began to come over me, and I was again going to pass 
on. While Ijing still, almost glad that the hour was 
so near when my sufferings would end, suddenly two 
wonderfully beautiful beings were standing in the 
room near me. I recognized them as being like those 
I had seen in vision in childhood. They were so 
lovely, their looks so divine, and such infinite ten- 
derness in their eyes, that it overpowered me into a 
feeling of utter nothingness, so that I tried to hide my 
face, but could not. This language flashed through 
my mind like fire: ''What am I that such beautiful 
beings should visit me? I am but as dust 'oud ashes.*' 
Then in a moment another beautiful being stood close 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 155 

to my bed, and looked into my face with eyes and 
countenance that human language cannot describe; 
and I was still more startled to recognize this latter as 
being the redeemed spirit of a negro, and, if possible, 
more sublimely tender and lovely than the other two; 
and this language spoken in my heart: '^Inasmuch 
sis thou did it unto one of the least of these, my breth- 
ren, thou didst it unto me." It was more than 1 
could bear, and light and life seemed to vanish. My 
wife, who had stepped from the joom for a short 
time, came in and found me rapidly sinking, and there 
seemed to be no hope of saving me. lUit her love 
was stronger than death; she called me back to life 
again, and in spite of the suffering, weakness and help- 
lessness, I still lived on. At last there came a time 
when the life cun-ent began to return, and to the sur- 
prise and joy of all it was evident that I would live. 
My recovery was slow, and it was feared that I 
might be helpless and deformed for life; but as the 
days passed and I began walking about, I was truly 
thankful to the Lord for another lease of life, and 
that my deformity was no greater than it was. As 
to the visitation of the angels, we thought, as in other 
similar cases, that the community was not ready to 
receive it, so we confined our communications to a 
few friends. But there came a time when it was 
necessary to give it a wider knowledge. 



156 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Some kind and very zealous f^eople became con- 
cerned about my not taking a more active part in 
a religious revival, and that I was not noisy enough in 
the meetings. With this feeling they visited me, and 
made known their anxiety. They were not without 
much religious experience, and I believed could and 
would understand me. I gave them a very brief out- 
line of my experience in spiritual matters, and they 
went away entirely satisfied, ever after treating me 
with the utmost kindness, and turned their attention 
to other parties. But this brief disclosure of my 
secret life caused trouble and anxiety afterwards, for 
an effort was now made to place me in positions of 
honor and responsibility in the church, which was con- 
trary to my wishes and my wife's judgment. 

Going back briefly, it is enough to say that my 
conflict with the church was one of the prime causes 
of . a separation in the Westerly Yearly Meeting of 
Friends' Church, and there was a larger per cent, of 
members who separated in Mill Creek Monthly and 
Plainfield Quarterly - Meetings than any other, and 
many of the elders and other officers left the church 
in a body. To fill some of these vacant places was what 
my friends wished of me, but I not only steadily re- 
fused to accept such appointments, but began to with- 
draw from active participation in the business of the 
church, for it was our conviction that it would not do 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 157 

for me to occupy the seats of those with whom I had 
been contending so long, lest it should savor of design- 
iiig ambition to displace them that I might fill their 
places. Though this course gave some honest dissatis- 
faction and some severe censure, yet by being patient 
and still it all worked out well, and time has shown that 
we were right, for as the excitement attending and 
following the long contest died away, we all began 
to see things with more charitable feelings, etc., and 
now the few who still survdve can grasp each othei*s' 
hands with the warm shake of kindly forgiveness and 
heartfelt gratitude to the Lord that we are so minded. 
After the close of the war there was a move- 
ment among the Yearly Meetings of Friends to or- 
ganize a general conference of Bible school work, 
which resulted in a bi-ennial conference of delegates 
from Friends' schools w^hich wished to be represented. 
I was very much interested in the subject, and at- 
tended the conferences held in Lynn, New^ Bedford, 
Mass.; Philadelphia, Pa.; Wilmington, Ohio and 
Indianapolis, Indiana, and took excursion parties to 
most of them. In this way I became acquainted with 
the leading members of the church, and sometimes 
had a glimpse at the inner life of some who thought 
their real characters were altogether unknown to men, 
and I more than one time incurred the displeasure 
of the good people for warning them against the 



158 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

designs of those whom they thought their best friends. 
Among some of my ''Scraps and Fragments" are 
some notes that would not do to publish for at least 
another generation ; they would be startling to all and 
painful to many. In addition to this, it was a natural 
consequence that I should hear much of individual 
history and character discussed, which would often 
fasten itself on my memoiy. My knowledge of the 
Bible gave me ability to enter into many of the debater 
of the time relative to the many innovations that were 
entering Friends^ Chui-ch, and often it did not take a 
large amount of discernment to predict coniing events 
in certain meetings and individual ministers. 

It will be impossible to me to make 'myself in- 
telligible to' give all the events of life as they oc- 
curred; it would mix up home life, church matters, 
travel and adventures in such a way that it would be 
confusing. It mil be better to take one line at a time 
and connect them by incidental references. My 
niece had married, and died in 1881, leaving two little 
daughters. My daughter had married Joseph John 
Doan in 1881. My mother-in-law, Eebecca Hadley, 
had come to live vdth us. She was nearly helpless 
and nearly blind, requiring much care. Brother Al- 
fred's oldest daughter, Luella C, had married Nathari 
D. Albertson, and come to the farm to take (;are of 
my mother. A large number of nreees and nephews 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 159 

oii'lx)tli sides had married and settled in various points. 
With the two grandmothers- with us, it made our 
house headquarters for a large family connection, 
and of times there were but few days that we were 
without visitors, who unavoidably required time and 
attention. For many years my large orchard yielded 
much f niit, and some" winters our guests would con- 
sume half a bushel of apples every day, and the habit 
of bringing in a basketful daily was as regular as 
work; the going and coining was so great that it re- 
quired a hoi*se aiid cohteyarice to be in constant use. 
The two grandmothers being remarkable women, 
attracted many people, especially the young, who 
loved to hear them tell of their early days, going 
back to 1806. On one occasion a dozen' or more 
young people were present, and the subject of amuse- 
ments and games was under discussion, cards included. 
When there was a pause in the conversation, my 
mother, who was sitting near by, astonished the com- 
pany by sa^ang that in her youth she was never beaten 
at playing cards, and possibly could yet hold a hand. 
Before they had recovered from their astonishment, 
she bade my daughter bring out her cards; this adde<l 
to the wonder. A pair of cotton cards with a bunch 
of fine cotton lint was brought, and she proceeded to 
card the cotton into rolls ready for spinning. The 
interest and delight "was now without bounds; not one 



160 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

of the yonng people had ever seen the ]il:e before. 
Then, to give a finishing touch, she said she was a 
noted musician, and would give them a tiii\r on her 
old musical instrument. A spinning-wheel was 
brought, and she spun the rolls she had carded, UjaV 
ing the old wheel hum as in the lon^' ago. That 
company wall not forget Grandma (yoffiu'e <'ard play- 
ing and musical instrument. 

Mother-in-law Rebecca Hadley died in 1882, in 
her ninety -third year. She was the hist of her gen- 
ei-ation on that side, leaving behind a l)lessed.me]nory. 
The seven yeairs that she lived w^ith u.^ so taxed my 
wife's strength that she began to fai] in healtli and 
vigor, and in two years an incurable can.'er developed 
in her right breast, which continued to grow for nearly 
two years, then, at the urgent advice of all our friends, 
we at last consented to have a surgical operation per- 
formed. By it all her right breast was removed, leav- 
ing a wound extending back eight inches. It was a 
veiw dangerous operation, but skillfully performed 
by experienced surgeons. The wound healed slowly, 
but seemingly surely, and we began to hope that 
danger was passed. One of the physicians, however, 
said in a year it would re-appear. Although the sore 
healed, and she was cheerful and apparently in rea- 
sonable health, exactly at the end of one year it 
showed unmistakable signs of retuiiiing, and in a few 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 161 

weeks was well-detiiied and very painful ; and all hope 
was gone. It steadily increased, and in a year the 
former wound was an ulcer terrible to see and more 
terrible to endure. She began to waste away with 
a complication of diseases. For the last nine months 
of her life her sufferings were so great that she had 
to t^ike morphine nearly all the time, and she was 
so reduced and tender that it was dithcnilt to (^are for 
her without producing pain, but by constant atten- 
tion I learned to relieve her to some extent. For 
several months I rarely left her bed but for a few 
minutes, and for many weeks did not undress to sleep. 
In our weary, lonely watches by night, we often 
talked aver our lives and the seemingly near ap- 
proach of the end, for my strength was rapidly fail- 
ing, and we had much anxiety lest I might give out 
before she passed away. She often spoke of my mi- 
raculous survival of former wounds, and firmly be- 
lieved that I was especially spared to take care of 
her in her last days. And so we waited, watched 
and struggled on, both failing in slow but sure de- 
cline, until I suddenly gave out and sank under com- 
plete exhaustion, and was immediately attacked with 
erysipelas. For a while it seemed as though the case 
was hopeless, but Nathan D. Albertson took me into 
a room, and did not leave me for an hour at a time 
for sixteen days, and I was saved. But lost to nearly 



162 LIFE AND TRAVPJLS 

all that was transpiring around, my mind wandered 
i)S into distant lands. I seemed to visit countries and 
cities that were so real that th<' pictures have not 
jet faded, and occasionally my clairvoyant ^dsions 
returned for brief, but startling moments. To go 
back to my wife, who continued to sink after I failed, 
though it seemed a special Providence sent a nurse 
to fill my place, and she did not lack for care. She 
retained her consciousness up to the last breath, and 
almost her last words were: "Send some suitable per- 
son to take care of Addison when I pass away." 
When I was told she was gone I seemed to under- 
stand, but alas! it was not so. I was so we-ak and 
exhausted that it was several weeks before I could 
fully comprehend my situation and loss. To neigh- 
bors and friends I seemed quite natural, but my 
daughter and sister-in-law knew that I was far from 
being out of danger, not even capable of taking care 
of myself, but under their care my strength of body 
and mind came slowly back. Then the sense of utter 
loneliness was so ovei^owering that it was almost 
more than my weakness could bear, but the Lord gave 
me power to still hope and tTust his protecting arm 
amid my helplessness. My wife died March 5th, 
1889, in the HOth year of her age. 



CHAPTER SIX. 



Trip to the Pacific Coast — G^oing Through the Cen- 
tral Route to Oregon— Stop at Indian School — 
OceanVojage to San Francisco — Meet Mj Son and 
go With Him to Carson City — Return Through 
Southern California, Texas, Indian Territory, etc. 

I will go back to the line of travel again. Per 
fore my wife's affliction came on, I took another 
exploring trip to the Pacific coast to make a more ex- 
tended examination of the reputed great fruit region. 
Many horticulturists requested me to keep an eye 
out for the interest of horticulture in general, and 
for individual trade in particular. 

My rou"le was by way of Danville and Plooming- 
ton, Illinois; Puriington and Ottumwa, Iowa, to 
Omaha, Nebraska. From there over the Union Pa- 
cific up Platte Valley. Some years before Dr. Allen 
Furnas, an old friend and neighbor, and I had an 
iiivitatioii to visit Nebraska State Fair, which we did, 
and after its close looked around over the new stat^. 

(163) 



164 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

We went to Kearney Junction, as far as settlements 
extended; this gave a tolerably clear idea of the rich 
agricultural state. Beyond Kearney Junction all was 
new, and from there I began taking permanent mental 
pictures of the wide expanse of luxuriant prairie 
grass that filled the river valley and crowned the 
rolling hill, with large herds of cattle feeding on the 
hillside, with the typical cowboy in charge, for he 
was one of the distinctive characters of American 
life at that time, and no American character will 
sooner disappear, and when gone be so little under- 
stood. 

^Tien the Indians of our vast plains were finally 
subdued and placed on reservations, there were many 
millions of acres of pasture land made accessible, and 
soon great numbers of cattle took the place of the 
rapidly-disappearing buffalo; and hardy, brave, ad- 
venturous men were needed to take charge of the 
herds that spread out over the expanse. Sometimes 
a herdsman (cowlwy) would take his herd of cattle 
or sheep hundreds of miles from the frontier, and be 
away from humanity for months, leading a terribly 
lonely life. As might be expected, the isolation from 
home, and surrounded with privation and danger, 
often encountering the ferocious wolf and more-to-be- 
dreaded grizzly bear, and still oftener wandering cat- 
tle thieves and freebooters, with whom he had many 



OF ADDISON COFFiN. 165 

deadly coiifiicts, stamped upon his character peculiar 
traits not found elsewhere. l>ut their lives were not 
wholly devoid of compensating elements. Besides 
the large gains in business, they soon became a law 
unto themselves, and for a few years, during their 
highest glory, could defy the outside world. Many 
times they set aside state laws in land claims, and were 
not easily controlled; Init eventually the rapid ad- 
vance of settlements encroached on their domain, aiid 
the small farmers with barbed ware fence, accom- 
plished more and much faster than the appeals to state 
law or occasional collisions and loss of life. But the 
cowboy, like the Indian and the buffalo, is a thing of 
, the past, and will return no more. 

This boundless expanse of grass continued sev- 
eral hundred miles up the Platte River valley into the 
Colorado, but before reaching the latter it was un- 
mistakably evident on every side that we were out 
of the rain belt, and into the great in-igation 
region. Stunted sage brush and sand burs appeared ; 
the ever-present red ants, with their little mounds of 
siand thrown up, were busy everywhere. The beau- 
tiful green was gone, and as far as one could see it 
was brown and sear, gi^dng things a look of sad 
sterility. 

The town of Greely and its adjoining settle- 
ment was off the main I'nion Pacific line, but I was 

11 



166 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

anxious to see the result of irrigation, as that experi- 
ment was claimed to be a grand success, so I went 
that waj and stopped for a time to see and study for 
myself. Xever was I more surprised and pleased 
with the result. I at once became enthusiastic over 
the grand future for all our vast tracts of arid, desert 
region, for as a consequence of the trial at Greely I 
saw the triumph of coming ages, and J have not yet 
lost my enthusiasm. From Greely a short run wds 
made to Denver, which had become celebrated by its 
proximity to Pike's Peak and the famous gold belt 
near by, but it was like other young, pretentious 
•cities — had much to learn and some things to iiidearn. 
Prom Denver we went north to the main line, and 
soon entered the Rocky Mountain range. From 
there it was uj) grade through constantly varying 
mountain scenery. Sometime?^ it was. of surpassing 
beauty, opening out to view as we turned some great 
spur on the mountain side, showing valleys and hills 
blended in a vast panorama that is not easily forgotten, 
^lany people, as they ascend the Great Di\'ide, 
are almost exhausted by the raritied moiuitain air. I 
never felt any unpleasant sensation, but on the con- 
trary have a sense of exhilaration and buoyancy not 
felt in plain or valley. At the summit, in Shennan^s 
Pass, there is a large pyramidal monument, which 
marks the highest grade in the range. This point is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 167 

dreaded by people with weak lungs. Many men tried 
to run the length of the train, but few could do it 
without being out of breath. On account of the 
elevation the stop is always short at that point. The 
scene in some directions is grand, but in othei's it is 
like a gentle, rolling countrs-. We were on the gi*eat 
summit level, and were hardly conscious of the regu- 
lar, but rapid, descent as we went down into the great 
treeless region that lies between the Rocky and Sierra 
Xevada mountains. 

Descending westward, we reached the valleys of 
the head streams of the North Platte. The principal 
of these are Laramie and Medicine Bow rivers, which 
liead in the ^N'orth Park, and cross the great Laramie 
plains, and finally emerge from the mountains and 
start for their long journey to the Missouri. AIT this 
A^ast pasture land was occupied by lai*ge herds of cat- 
tle, which presented an impressive view when seen 
covering: the distant hills and the fiel4 glass revealed 
the ever-present cowboy, sometimes single, and again 
two and three together, but otherwise alone amid the 
wide expanse. 

A section boss on the road had laid by some 
money and invested in a small lot of cattle and put 
them in charge of a 15-year-old son, who delighted 
in the wild life. The little herd had now grown to 
2,000, and the boy had become a man. That morning 



168 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the boss was aboard the train, going to meet his son 
at a station on ahead. As we neared the place the 
engineer blew a tattoo on his whistle. The boss 
sprang to his feet, saying, ''Charlie is coming!" and 
sure enough, looking out to the north, a rider was 
seen coming across the plain at full speed, waving his 
cap in answer to the salute. When he came up his 
face was all aglow with the excitement of a twenty- 
mile ride to meet the train. He was greeted with 
hearty cheers by the trainmen, and the father was 
proud of his son, a noble specimen of manhood and 
a model cowboy. From that boss and father I learned 
much of the every day life of cattle herding, its dan- 
ger, losses ^nd profits. 

As we passed on westward across the rolling- 
plains, among rough, rocky hills, we began to realize 
that we were in the great summit level of the conti- 
nent, the great, central fountain of nearly all our large 
rivers. Soon we reached the wonderful Green River 
valley, the headwaters of the Colorado of the west. 
Here we found a combination of strong contradictory 
phenomena. Taking its rise in the same central up- 
land, amid perpetual snow, yet its waters for many 
miles are so alkaline and bitter that it is not fit to 
drink without boiling; even the pasture lands are use- 
less. The grass is so bitter that cattle cannot live 
on it; even the wild deer and buffalo never frequent 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 1(^9 

this region. Tliere is one celebrated spring or large 
fountain that yields the most noisome and intensely 
aend water known. Yet it is a wonderful country; 
behind us was the headwater of the Platte river, to 
the southeast the Arkansas, to the northeast and north 
is the head of the Yellowstone and Snake (Columl)ia), 
and we are on the Colorado, while 150 miles westward 
is the eastern rim of the Great Salt Lake basin; and 
greatest of all, 250 miles north, is Yellowstone Park, 
the wonder of the world. 

At Granger we left the main Union Pacific line 
and soon entered the Bear river country, where the 
river is running north, and in a short time came tx) 
one of the characteristics of this strange, volcanic 
region. Bear river originally was a branch of Snake 
river, but some local convulsion has thrown up a 
short range of mountains right across its course, form- 
ing Bear Lake, and turning the river back into the 
great basin and emptying it into Salt Lake. This is 
only one of many such changes that have been wrought 
by volcanic action, and to an eye open to such things, 
this whole great, central treeless territory is full of in- 
terest; for on every side is evidence of comparatively 
fearful volcanic activity, and one looking for the won- 
derful cannot afford to travel during the night. 

I turned aside at Pocatello, and went north to 
Idaho Falls to .see that region then just opened to 



170 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

settlement, and which was supposed to be a place of 
mnch promise. Some days were spent in tramping 
over the valley, among sage brush and numerous 
jack rabbits. After seeing the soil and the inexhaust- 
ible supply of water in Snake river, it was easy to pre- 
dict the future of that valley, for it was a marvel of 
fertility and productiveness. Upon returning to Po- 
catello the journey was resumed down Snake River 
valley and across the wide plain. To the average 
passenger the suiTOundings were dreary, desolate and 
repulsive ; but not so ^\^th me, for there before me, 
Avritten in raised stone, was the history of the coun- 
try. In many places there is not an acre of surface 
but has a half dozen craters from four to twenty feet 
in diameter, and from three to fifteen feet high.. 
Those craters were formed when the great lake of 
melted matter was cooling and crusting over. ^Then 
the crust was the consistency of baker's dough, great 
bubbles of steam would escape through the plastic 
covering, which left the opening only partially closed, 
and it soon hardened into stone, and there they stand 
simple and plain as a printed page. The low ranges 
of adjacent mountains show that they have first been 
formed, of this plastic material, rolled and twisted into 
great fr»lds, then subsequently shivered and shattered 
by internal convulsions, accompanied by volcanic fire 
that scorchefl and blackened the broken rocks. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 171 

Every mile of the joiiraey across the plain and 
down the valley was full of interest, for on every side 
was evidence that we were in the midst of phenomena 
not found elsewhere, and peculiar to this part of the 
continent and the world, so far as known to mo<lem 
scientists and geologists. 

The niin<l can in time grow weary of remember- 
ing and storing away, even though it be things both 
sublime and beautiful with which it is dealing. So 
it was a relief to reach the wild region of the Owyhee 
river, past the railroad junction of the theii noisy, 
boasting, gambling little place knowTi as Boise City, 
which, though of ill-repute, had a future before it 
that time alone could develop. At Huntington we 
were in the midst of one of the wild, incomprehen- 
sible territories. The mountains seemed to have been 
thrown up by contending crosg currents of volcanic 
energy. In some places two of these contending 
forces seem to have met and made chop sea of the 
mountains and hills. It is a wild, interesting ride 
through the Seven Devils and Blue Mountain ranges, 
with every conceivable combination of dark ravines, 
dizzy heights and secluded valleys; a perfect medley 
of romantic scenery. 

At, Pendleton we reached the celebrate^l valley 
of the Columl)ia river, and at Umatilla we came to the 
rjver itself. Of this stream it mav be said, there are 



172 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

few more interesting in the world, and not one that 
drains such a wonderful country. It is the outlet for 
the waters of the great internal empire, as it is called, 
all of Idaho, the western part of Montana, part of 
British Columbia, Oregon and Washington. Within 
this area every form of volcanic force has been in 
active operation, producing results not found else- 
where, and not excelled in the terrible, sublime and 
beautiful. 

From Umatilla the railroad follows the river; 
and it is in sight much of the time, and there is no 
part of the distance but what is full of beauty, with 
ever changing views and sublime grouping of moun- 
tains as a background. There is one point that no tour- 
ist should fail to see, or to be awake and on the look- 
out for. At a bend in the river as we neared the 
Cascade range of mountains, Mt. Hood suddenly 
came into view, standing high above all the interven- 
ing summits, clothed with perpetual snow, which 
sparkled in the morning sunlight like a great phos- 
phorescent cone of fire. It bursts upon one so un- 
expectedly and is so nmch like a meteor flash, that 
the vision fixes itself on the memory so deeply that 
few of the many who thus see it will ever forget it. 

From the moment we caught sight of Mt. Hood 
the interest increased, for on every side we saw evi- 
dence of the mighty convulsions that have shaken 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 173 

this whole region in the past. We now travelled 
through a country which is the richest in fossil de- 
posits of pre-historic times of any place in the world. 
This is especially the case up the valley of the John 
Day river, which comes in from the south and the 
plains of Des Chutes river. The beds of the streams, 
the banks and bluifs, the foot-hills and sometimes the 
mountain sides, abound in petrifactions of such a char- 
acter as to make a fossil collector go into ecstasies 
over the evidences of former life in this now com- 
paratively desolate place. 

Pi;obably there are few^ parts of the country 
which have a greater interest to the geologist, or intel- 
ligent farmer, than the Grand Dalles, the great rapids 
and falls of the Columbia river wdiere it makes its 
passage through the Cascade range of mountains. 
For unknown ages the river has been cutting its way 
through the range. When it first began it was four 
or five thousand feet above its present level, and a 
great inland sea covered the area of the internal 
empire. 

It is wonderful to behold how the work has 
slowly progressed in wearing away the rock. In 
places there have been perpendicular falls of a thous- 
and feet, ever var\dng and changing until it is now 
confined at The Dalles proper, to a channel of a 
few hundre<i feet wide, through which the water 



174 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

rushes at liglitniug speed. No invention of man can 
ever navigate those fearful rapids. Like the Xiagara 
river, it is slowly deepening the gorge and working up 
stream, but it has no lake to drain ; its labor is done in 
that line. The scene at Harper's Ferry will give a 
faint ide^a of the higher and grander scene at the 
passage of the Columbia through the Cascade range. 
It is an invariable rule that things ai^e on a wider 
and grander scale as we go west across the continent. 
The plains are wider, the mountains more rugged 
and higher, the volcanic energy has been greater, the 
natural wonders more astonishing, and the ancient life 
has been more gigantic and abundant. The growth 
of the trees in the past, as well as in the present, is as- 
tonishing, and they are taller and larger than any 
other land; the deposits of gold are more abundant, 
and the future of human developmeiat more ideal and 
more assured. 

It was not only these sublime scenes that gave 
me an absorbing and thnlling interest in all that 
passed, but I was full of a silent and deep feeling of 
triumph in my heart, that I had at last reached the 
ideal land of my early life. Forty years before^ 
when I left my Carolina home, Oregon was to be the 
ultimate resting place, and thiM>ugh all the interven- 
ing veal's the hope of one day reacliing there had 
never left me: and now I felt a gk>w of exultation and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 175 

thankfulness that I had at last realized my life dream, 
and a& the train whirled past and through the ever- 
changing scenes, down the magnificent river, my joy 
can better be imagined than expressed. The impulse 
^vithin was to g-ive erne long, continuous shout of 
victory. 

In this overland trip there were three other ex- 
plorers who, in like manner, were aliA'e to all that 
parsed. One was an enthusiast on the bee culture; 
then there was the man who dealt in blooded horses, 
and a shrewd real estate man. When w^e landed at 
Portland all were full to overflowing and eager to 
s.ee the promised land, but before parting we agreed 
to meet again and compare notes. The man inter- 
ested in bees W' ent up and over the Coast range to the 
west to the honey belt; the horse dealer went into 
ecstasies over the splendid hor&e§ seen in Portland, and 
from there he went up the gTand Willamette Valley; 
the real estate man became incog, with eyes and ears 
open, while I spread out up the valley, and among- 
the fo<>thills and immense forests. I had. several 
objective points and purj)0ses, one of which was the 
government Indian school, five miles north of Salem, 
the capital, where I found my old friend, W. F. 
Harvey, and my young cousin, William Y. Coffin, 
the former superintending physician, the latter super- 
intendent in charge of the. school. A few days were 



176 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Spent at the seli<X)I, where I had an opportunity of 
seeing and observing twenty-two different types of 
native Indians, including two from Alaska. 

The school was located in a dense forest, which 
the Indian boys were cutting down and burning. I 
was struck with the size of one tree they cut, and 
measured it acroes the stump as well as its length. 
It was 14 feet in diameter and 220 feet long. It was 
the largest tree in the clearing, but a few hundred 
jards south I found several still larger and taller. 
To the east of the school, and across the railroad, >vas 
a magnificent forest of giant trees that looked as 
though it would be a sin to destroy for any purpose 
or under any pretense. 

While at the sch(X>l a telegram was telephoned 
from Salem for me from my son in Carson, Xevada, 
inquiring whether I was in that part of the world, 
l^pon replying, another came asking when I could 
meet him at the Lick House, San Francisco. The 
time tables of the sailing of steamei*s was consulted, 
and a date fixed for me to sail from Portland. This 
shoii)ened my stay in Oregon a few days, but I was 
the more active in exploring. At Salem the State 
Fair was in full tide, where all kinds of possible, and 
a few impossible, productions were on exhibition; but 
among the many gi-and things the display of fruit 
was the finest I had ever seen, apples, pears, cherries, 



OF ADDJSON COFFIN. 177 

])niii('?^, }>hmiv^, (}innc'es and hardy varieties of small 
fruits. My knowledge of fruit told me at once that 
Oregon was destined to lead the world in these va- 
rieties, and subsequent results have proved it. 

AVhile at Salem 1 saw a cowbov pen-form a feat of 
eourag-e and skill that was wonderful. Two very 
large and poAverful horses harnessed to an express 
wagon took fright, and dashed off at breakneck speed, 
and the driver was powerless to do anything. The 
cowboy was sitting on his small, wiry horse, looking 
at a train of cars coming in. His attention w^as called 
to the runaway team by the shouting. He looked 
for a moment, took in the situation, then dashed after 
them like a flash and was soon beside the off horse, 
which he caught by the bridle and jerked its head 
up and back. At the same time he swung about four 
feet of the end of his lanat like a whip lash across 
the nose of the other horse. In thirty or forty steps 
he brought them to a dead halt, then briefly said to 
the excited driver, ^'Xow you haye them," and can- 
tered slowly back to his former position. But it is 
due his intelligent horse to say of it that it acted 
its part as though it understood just what must be 
done and how to do it. While the rider's hands were 
both employed with the horses, it kept its place, 
and at the right moment braced itself for the flnal 



178 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tug that brought them around. The sagacity of those 
trained horses is marvelous. 

Another example of a cowboy and his horse. 
A large, stamj^eding steer had been lassoed, but in 
the first frantic stiTiggle it threw the horse and rider 
in the road. The man was somewhat shaken up, but 
the horse sprang to its feet, tightened the lasso, and 
kept the infuriated animal in the road, and had taken 
it successfully nearly a mile before over-taken by 
its master. Sometimes the steer would make a des- 
perate lunge and try to gore the horse, but it always 
dashed off in the. right direction, keeping the lasso 
taut, and often gaining a hundred yards of headway 
by this maneuver. Every effort of the steer to break 
away was promptly and intelligently thwarted. No 
man could have done better. The lasso was firmly 
fastened to the saddle, which was as firmly fastened 
to the horse. In many instances these horses have 
displayed as much discernment as the best shepherd 
dog in herding cattle and sheep. 

The time to leave Oregon was so arranged that 
I could meet my fellow-explorers at Portland, and 
we had a very interesting meeting. The informa- 
tion received and given was invaluable. It was al- 
most like an actual experience, and each felt that it 
was reliable. Xone were so completely enthused as 
the bee culturist ; he had seen whole car loads of honey 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 179 

shipped bv one iiiaii; it was something ahnost beyond 
belief, but he was henceforth to be an Oregon bee 
keeper, llie horse dealer had selected the Kogue 
River valley for a blooded horse farm. The real estate 
man saw what has since come to ])ass — the growth 
of East Portland and the fortunes to be thus gained — 
and he is now happy at the thought of his foresight. 
While I related all that had been seen and done, l)ut 
withheld judgment until 1 had seen more, though 
agreeing with the convictions and conclusions of my 
friends. 

I took steamer at Portland for San Francisco, 
the overland railroad not being completed at that time. 
In crossing the bar at the mouth of the river a strong 
mnd was blowing, making a chop sea, which caused 
the steamer to lay off from land and run well out to 
sea. Though rough, there was nothing sensational 
about the voyage, excepting to those who had genuine 
sea sickness. To them there were many sensational 
periods, and probably memories not yet gone. One 
day a school of whales, a dozen or more, passed us. 
One large fellow rose ^\nthin fifty feet of the ship 
and spouted his two jets of water high in the air; then 
laid almost still a minute or more, taking in his long 
breath of fresh air; then, with a sudden, rolling plunge 
was out of sight. Although the steamer was making 
good speed and going the same way, the .whales soon 



180 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

disappeared in the distance ahead, the last jets of 
water, as seen through the glass, not rising but six to 
ten feet above the waves. 

The approach to the Golden Gate was full of 
interest aside from the natural scenery and wonderful 
topographical surroundings. In one of my aerial 
dreams, or clairvoyant ^dsions, I had seemed to stand 
with Milton Hadley on a hill and look out to sea 
through the Golden Gate into the past years; hence 
I was anxious to see all the islands and hilltops that 
surrounded the bay. ^^^len I reached the landing, 
my son, and his wife met me at the gangwav and we 
had a happy meeting, for it had been several years 
since he had gone west, and I was channed and de- 
lighted to meet his beautiful young wife. She was 
one of the few to whom the best of photographs do 
not do justice. 

For a few days my son showed me the wonders 
of the city and its surroundings. One of ihe points 
which engaged our attention was the Cliff House, 
across the neck of the coast, where hundreds of bark- 
ing seals occupied a group of rocks rising out of the 
water near shore. They keep up a constant noise very 
much like fox hounds on a hot trail. These seals are 
protected by the government, and are about all that 
have escaped destruction. We next viewed the scene 
of the sand lot speculation. Twenty-five or thirty 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 181 

vears ago the city undertook — wiuit was looked ii}n;ii 
as one of the most stupendous humbugs of the time — 
to remove som€ sand hills ai.d Jill up a part of the bav. 
The project entered into local and state politics, and 
was long drawn out and violent; but the sand hills 
were plucked up and cast into the spot selected, and 
now the bay is filled. The place where the sand hills 
stood is now the center of business, and the most 
valuable property in the city. 

The whole place was interesting to me, for my 
brother-in-law, Milton Hadley, was one of the leaders 
in the rebellion in the early days, when honest people 
arose in arms to expel the blacklegs, swindlers and 
robbei-s who had control of the city and state; but this 
has gone into history and need not be repeated. It 
was interesting to see the place where the citizens 
built the gunny-bag fort and established their head- 
quarters, tried, condemned and hanged the robbers. 

San Francisco is one of the two wonderful cities 
of the world where two or more people from every 
civilized nation can meet and talk together; the cli- 
mate is not too cold for those from the tropics, nor 
too warm for those from the poles. Cairo, in Egypt, 
is the other city. 

We next went to Carson City, Nevada, my son^s 

home, where I spent some weeks among the wild 

mountains. I made a trip by Tucker to and around 

Lake Zahoe, one of the strange lake phenomena not 

^ 12 



182 LIFE A>sD TRAVELS 

easily explained. It is 6,200 feet above the sea level, 
amid snow and ice; yet its waters never freeze, no 
matter liow cold the atmosphere. It is nearly 2,000 
feet deep aiid surrounded by mountain peaks, and 
believed by many to be the extinct crater and outlet 
to a vast volcanic area, though twenty miles long and 
twelve wide. 

Xear Carson City is another remarkable object 
not surpassed in any corner of the eai'th. It is the 
footprints of men, animals and birds found in a solid 
rock formation,, when excavating in the yard of the 
State piison. When I first saw these imprints of a 
past geologic age it filled me \^'i-:h inexpressible aston- 
ishment, for here were traces of beings who had existed 
long, long before the fossil forms on John Day river 
had seen the light. They were back of the prison 
buildings, where the heavy sandstone rises in a hill 
60 to 100 feet high. An acre or more had been ex- 
cavated for building stone twenty to thirty feet at 
the east, south and west walls. As thej progressed 
the layers of stone varied in thickness from two to six 
feet. At the depth mentioned a layer was uncovered 
showing footprints of huge elephants, giant men, in- 
numerable birds, deer, horses, dogs or wolves, a huge 
elk, a gigantic bird, and other wholly unknown ani- 
mals. The tracks had been made in a stiff clay, about 
six inches deep; then it hardened and had been covered 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 183 

bv a deposit of what the rock was formed, thus pre- 
serving the foot marks in perfect condition, and when 
the layer above was quarried there was the mold on 
the under side. The elephant's tracks w^ere tw^enty- 
t wo inches in diameter; the men eighteen inches long, 
eight inches wide at toe^ and six at heel; the other 
impressions of known animals were similar to those 
of the present day. Under this formation, which was 
two feet thick, the same kind of marks were found 
on the stratmn below, but double in quantity. In 
one case a child had been led by the parent, leaving 
perfect footprints. The tracks are scattered thickly 
over the space. The animals seemed to have crossed, 
and recrossed in every direction. Then men, or 
people, appeared to have walked singly or in groups. 
Near the west side of the yard an elephant had died 
and left an outline of its form, and several frag- 
ments of its tusk were left :K'ar by. It-:- mate li'.id 'p- 
parently, from the marks, remained by it lor some 
time, helping. Sixteen horses had gone by in a com- 
pany, all close together and in a direct line; they 
appear to have been the last to pass. One unknown 
animal left a roundish track nearly eight inches in 
diameter, wholly different from all the others, and 
from anything now living or among fossil remains yet 
discovered. 

These footprints open up a new chapter to geolo- 



184 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

gists, and reveal the existericc of animals in a time 
heretofore unknown, and the presence of man in 
an age and under circumstances inexplicable. I was 
so interested in this discovery that I charged my mem- 
ory with the whole picture so it would not fade, and 
on amving at home drew a chart and had it engraved 
and printed. It was fortunate T did so, for when I 
last visited the prison yard, in 1(S93, it had heen 
dragged over with heavy stones, carts and wagons, 
and all marks were destroyed excepting a few near 
the east wall and close to what was then the south- 
west corner. The time may come when it \vi\\ be a 
good thing that I inherited a fine memory and pre- 
served a chart of these impressions. 

Twenty miles north of Carson City is Steam Ix^at 
hill, a miniature Yellowstone Park. Covering a 
space of eighty or one hundred acres of foot hills, 
there is a display of small geysers, boiling pools of 
water, steam jets shooting into the air; lon^', irregular, 
ragged fissures, from which sulphurous and poison- 
ous gases escape, with low, rumbling noises from far 
below, so that the hill trembles. Streams of boiling 
water issue from fantastically-shaped fountains, and 
deposit various colored and different kirxls of sediuierit 
down the side of the hill. In many places lime many 
feet deep has been found, with a curious mingling of 
other deposits. Steamboat Hill- is the extreme south- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 185 

west end of the last lake of fire, of which Norris hmn, 
in Yellowstone Park, is the central vent, and the Bad 
Lands the far nxDrtheast extremity; and it is wonderful 
to see that the evidence there is of the fearful vol- 
canic activity, which has been witnessed by this part 
of the world. It is truly the land of fire. 

Still another object of much interest is the lum- 
ber flumes, by which lumber and wood are floated 
from long distances from among and up on the moun- 
tains. Flumes are like a big trough, shaped about 
three feet deep and water tight. They are construct- 
ed to cross deep gorges and descend steep inclines, 
finally delivering the lumber in the valley or out on 
the plain. There is one twenty-four miles long near 
Carson City, down which is floated millions of feet 
of lumber and hundreds of thousands of cords of 
wood. This to home people, in eastern states, would 
seem almost beyond belief. 

While stopping with my son, I one day deter- 
mined to explore the winding flume to its terminus, 
several thousand feet above the valley. I found it 
quite a dangerous and adventurous trip, although 
there were men stationed in little watch houses at short. 
inter\'als to prevent jams in the flume. Yet there 
were points from which I almost shrank in terror; 
places where it was carried across gorges and along 
the face of cliffs on trestle work fifty to sixty feet 



186 LIFE AND. TRAVELS 

higli, with nothing but a ten-inch boai'd to walk upon. 
Sometimes it passed under overhanging rocks that 
shut out the sun and almost daylight, but I persevered, 
for I had had some experience in walking narrow 
ways through life. Besides, the watchmen were sur- 
prised and delighted to see me come their way, as 
it was a rare thing for them to see any one from 
the outside in this lonely place. 

With fre(iuent rest^ and counsel from the watch- 
xiien, I reached the summit by the middle of the 
.afternoon ; then went down to Glennbrook, three miles 
away, on Lake Tahoe, spent the night, and walked 
back down the flume n-ext day ; not only to the sui'prise 
.and delight of the lone watchmen, who greeted me 
with hearty friendship, but in the city people were 
astonished at the performance, and for a time the fe^t 
was a noted event, and went the round of news. 
It was truly an interesting trip, and is stamped upon 
.the memor\\ There were many scenes of wild beauty 
and many of gloom and teiTor, and it was one of the 
practical lessons that could not be leame<l any other 
way. Ever afterwards when I saw flumes delivering 
wood and lumber, I called to mind the lumber men 
off in the mountains and the lone wat<^hers along its 
side, and my sympathy went out to tliem. 

The region around Caisson City is not mthout 
historic interest. Twelve miles awav is Yiroinia Oitv. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 187 

That is where the wonderful Comstock lode or gold 
deposit was, now w^orked out, but from which so many 
millions were mined, and filled the land with wonder. 
The early California trail passed close by the city, 
and the stage route started from there over which 
old Hank Monk drove Horace Greely on the cele- 
brated and historic ride. 

When I left niy son, instead of returning home- 
\yard over the Central Pacific Railroad, I went back 
to San Francisco and took the Southern Pacific route 
by Los Angeles, thence eastward across Arizona and 
'New Mexico to El Paso, Texas. This route intro- 
duced me into new^ scenes and new wonders. I made 
my first acquaintance with the varied forms and 
gigantic proportions of the cactus family, the most 
interesting and astonishing being the giants on the 
Yuma desert, which stand like huge pillars in the 
shape of cucumbers, rising to fifteen to thirty feet, 
and covered with thorns three to five inches long. 
Though they were mar^^elous, they imparted a very 
gloomy, desolate look to the vast and naked solitude. 
Other cacti were none the less noticeable, but there 
was more variety in their forms, and instead of add- 
ing to they relieved the drearv^ loneliness that ]>ecame 
oppressive, as hour after hour we sped forward over 
the almost dead level of sand and coarse gravel. 

Yet all that expanse of present sterility has 



188 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

within itself capabilities that se-em little less than 
miraculous. With water supplied in the proper quan- 
tity and right time, that desert is more productive 
than the richest valleys of the world, for just below 
its apparently barren surface is a mixture of volcanic 
ashe^ and tufa, that gives it inexhaustible fertility. 
This opens up a line of thought in which the imagin- 
ation can picture the ideal of the region, when it shall 
bud and blossom into life and be again peopled with 
millions. 

In Southern New Mexico is one of the wonderful 
phenomena that will one day attract much attention, 
and possibly become a national problem. It is the 
long line of sandhills which are slowly advancing 
northwards before the prevailing winds. The sand 
covers and destroys every' living thing, and the for- 
ward movement is so sure and regular that it can 
be calculated with measurable certainty. For hun- 
dreds of miles southward its track can be traced, as 
it has slowly ground its way over rocks and hills, 
across vallevs and streams, along the base of moun- 
tains ; ever\^^here leaAdng them serrated with grooves, 
channels and fantastic car^dng in the sandstone ledges 
and hard clay, and in places foi*ming singularly- 
shaped hills like a snow drift around ragged rocks 
that held the heavier portion of the great sand floe. 

Several days were spent at the historic point of 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 189 

El Paso, on the American side of the river, and in 
Paso del Norte, on the Mexican side. This was one 
of the Spanish inland settlements, and it, like many 
other places, bears testimony to the sagacity and fore- 
sight of the early Jesuit fathers. Though so remote 
from the coast and in the midst of a wilderness, they 
foresaw its importance as a passway through the 
mountains, which, after a lapse of 150 years, is now 
being verified by the concentration of railroads and 
the proposition, to build a dam across the river in the 
pass to form a reservoir for irrigation, that will equal 
if not surpass, anything of the kind known in modem 
times. The largest amount of blasting powder ever 
used at one time up to that date was exploded in that 
pass. It literally blew off the end of the mountain 
to make way for a railroad. Two cousins, who had 
resided there for some time, kindly showed me over 
the surrounding hills and through the fertile valley, 
just beginning to be developed under modem appli- 
ances, and which has a bright future before it. There 
•are no gold deposits near to distract and hinder its 
progress. 

The mn across the Staked plains to Ft. Worth, 
600 miles, was uneventful, but full of interest. In 
places there were large herds of cattle in sight. In 
the subterranean river belt many wind mills were be- 
ing erected for irrigation and stock water. There had 



190 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

been a grand roundup on tli€ Pecos Valley, and a 
company of cowboys were off on a vacation East. 
lliey were a lively, half-wild set of good fellows, bent 
on frolic and fun. On every side there were thous- 
ands of active prairie dogs standing, with owls, snakes 
and prairie hawks on their mounds thrown up over 
their burrows. The cowboys opened up a fusillade 
with their revolvers, repeating carbines and Winches- 
ter rifles, and only ceased when night came, to be re- 
newed next day. One of their number got furiously 
drunk the second dav. . His comiMnions bundled him 
off at a wayside station, and the men there put him into 
a coal shed to cool off. Then all moved hamioniously 
again until we reached Ft. Worth, where I left the 
pleasant, though boisterous, fellows with many a 
hearty handshake and good bye. 

From Ft. Worth I crossed the Indian territory 
to Parsons, Kansas, where I was among familiar scenes 
once more. From there by way of Ft. Scott, Kansas 
City, Lincoln, Nebraska, to Omaha, thence by the 
Burlington home: having traveled in all nearly 10,- 
000 miles. My memory was so stored with varied 
material, new and wonderful, that it required several 
weeks to re-arrange and classify. 

On my return, my friends and neighboi*s called 
on me frequently to give public talks on what I had 
seen and learned, and there were some people who 



OF ADDISON COFFIN, 



191 



doubted my statements on the ground that it was. im- 
ix>ssible for one person to see and do so much in so 
short a time; and many severe tests were made to 
prove my eyes and memory by parties who had seen 
portions of the country I had passed through, but 
my memory did not fail me in any essential fact or 
locality, ^or did I let it be known that I had fol- 
lowed with absorbing interest the history of all the 
Pacihc coast, from Clark and Lems' expedition in 
180i to 180(5; John Jacob Astor's founding of As- 
toria in 1812; Fremont's expedition in 1844: to 1850, 
and the history of Mexico from the conc^uest down 
to date, including the revolution. Independence and 
the annexation of Texas. Of all this my question- 
ers were measurably ignorant. 

There was also some demand for written accounts 
of my journey. Accordingly, several articles were 
prepared for state and local papers which seemed to 
meet the want, but our country is changing so rap- 
idly in almost every respect that a correct, life-like 
description of any particular locality will not be a 
true description hve years later. There are points in 
Kansas, Iowa, Xebraska, and all other states west, 
that were open, unbroken prairie without an inliabit- 
ant, twenty-five years ago, that are now thickly 
peopled, with towns, cities and many thousands of 
population. In fact, every state and territory west 



192 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

of the Mississippi, excepting Arkansas and Missouri, 
has been occupied and peopled since 1840. It would 
be interesting to the young people of this generation 
to see one of Woodbridge and Maltabrun's Geogra- 
phies, with their maps, as published from 1832 to 
1840. ^N^early half the great west was wholly un- 
known to the white man. 




CHAPTER SEVEN. 



Trip to the Pacific Coast — Landing at Reno, and 
Down to Carson City — Stop With My Son and 
Family — Climbing Mountains — Trip to Southern 
California — Trip to El Paso — Trip to Mexico City 
— Return to Texas — To New Orleans — Home. 

Soon after my return from this trip my wife's 
fatal illness began,, and as stated heretofore, continued 
on to th-e end, with little rest from suffering; and in 
the long watching and nursing I broke down in health 
and strength, and for a time my recovery was very 
doubtful, and when the crisis passed my condition 
was not hopeful, but a neighbor and special friend, 
Dr. Allen Furnas, had sold his farm and was going 
to Southern California, so he undertook to deliver me 
in Reno, Nevada, where my son would meet me. 

On the first of September, 1889, 1 joined him and 
his family to try what seemed rather a risky venture, 
on account of my weakness. At Kansas City, Mo., 
we took a tourist car and settled down for house- 

(193) 



194 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

keeping and a pleasant trip. The doctor and I had 
traA'eled much together, and knew how to make a 
trip paj. From the start my strength improved, and 
when we reached the mountains in Colorado the effect 
on me was marvelous. It seeined as though every 
breath imparted new life and energy, and natural 
vigor returned rapidly to body and spirit. 

We wei*e prepared to take items by the way. 
The doctor was a successful correspondent for many 
papers; he was observant, quick and penetrating; so 
with held glass, eye and ear, we suffered little to pass 
unnoted on the plains of Kansas and Colorado, and 
few mountain peaks of any consequence or beautiful 
valleys escaped us. In passing through the Greely, 
Col., settlement, I was surprised and pleased to see 
much improvement since I went through it on my 
last trip, especially with the many new farms and 
miles of imgating canals and signs of subst-antial 
wealth. The doctor had not been that way, and I 
had the honor of being instructor until we reached 
Ogden, Utah. Our fellow-passengers were as inter- 
esting as anything we saw; for besides our party 
there was a man and wife going to Jacksonville, Ore- 
gon; man and \viie to Napa, Cal. ; two men to Mer- 
ced, Cal.; two ladies to Southern California, and a 
few adventurers ^'going west." All were intelligent, 
civil, social people, and we had entire control of the 



OF ADDISON COFFlN. 195 

tourist sleejKT. We had a picnic three times a day 
from well-tilled baskets; the porter fired up one stove 
ou which to make coffee and tea. 

When we arrived on the smnmit in the pass, 
nearly all experimented by getting out and running, 
jumping and other exercises to try the effect of the 
raritied air on their lungs. Few could stand much 
effort, and some were very much oppressed from lack 
of breath, and suffered until we descended to a lower 
level. My lungs breathed in the clear mount-ain 
air like refreshing cordial, and I gTew stronger every 
hour. Though I had passed that way before, there 
was no less interest than at first. I saw new features 
in all the surroundings, and the improA'ements were 
advancing steadily forward. The farms had en- 
croached on hay lands along the river and out on the 
plain, shortening up the cattle range. Long lines of 
substantial wire fence enclosed hundreds of acres of 
whe^t land ; teams were busy replo^ving the sod broken 
in the spring; lumber was piled along the roadside 
for building homes. Dug outs and shacks with 
chickens around them, and cows tethered to stakes 
eating the luxuriant gTass, and many other sigiis of 
human life were to be seen where all was silent and 
lone on my former trip. This was interesting to all 
the company, who saw and understood how rapidly 
the settlements were advancing on every side. There 



198 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

was a correspoding change in the towns and villages. 
All had increased, some had doubled, in size, while 
others had suddenly sprung up as if by magic, with 
school houses, church spires and the hum of active 
life. Everywhere the cowboy was being pushed back 
toward the mountains, and his range circumscribed 
by the ever fatal wire fence. Green River valley 
Wyoming, was an exception to this. It was still 
unoccupied, and its bitter water region looked as deso- 
late and neglected as ever. 

There was a halt of a few hours at Ogden, but 
not time to see much of the city and surroundings; 
but the lunch baskets were replenished and a few 
luxuries in the form of fruit added. From that point 
the route was new to all, and we shared in the hew 
scenes that were constantly opening to view. We 
all were deeply interested in the 40 miles of real 
desert, an arm of the American desert that lies to the 
westward of Great Salt Lake, an expanse of naked, 
glittering, blistering, white sand, dangerous to cross 
by day in the hot season. Its glare will make the 
eyes and head ache, if exposed to its reflection long 
at a time. Though terrible, it is curious, and fur- 
nishes the greatest extreme in contrast with the un- 
surpassed blue grass region of Indiana and Ohio. 

The run down the valley of the Humboldt river, 
in Nevada, is rather dull and tiresome. The monot- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 197 

ony is broken by the Humboldt mountains and the 
great sink, or lake, where the river loses itself in an 
immense morass, which is an open lake in winter, but 
almost disappears in summer. The California trail of 
1849 to 1855 passed down the entire length of this 
river, and in the early days of the gold excitement, 
especially in 1849, there was much suffering in this 
valley. The grass failed and thousands of working 
cattle died; wagons had to be abandoned and the 
men had to make the rest of the journey on foot, and 
many perished by the way. The few survivors of 
the forty-niners will never forget the anguish of 
that journey, beginning on. the Humboldt and con- 
.tinuing all the weary way over the Sierra range of 
mountains to the coast. 

When we arrived at Reno, where the doctor had 
promised to deliver me as an invalid, my health and 
strength had improved so much that I was capable 
of looking after my own wants, and the parties my 
son had employed to see after me did not find me 
until I had walked to the hotel. The parting with 
the doctor and family was a pleasant one, for he 
and I expected to meet again at his new home in 
Southern Califoimia. 

I took the train for Carson City_, thirty-two miles 
south, where I landed safely and was met by my son 
and wife, and felt thankful to the Lord for all rn^r 

13 



198 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

blessings and returning health; for life, aspirations 
and ambitions were coining back. My son, daughter, 
and their two little children did everything in their 
power to make life agreeable, and the days passed 
more like a passing dream than a reality. 

There was continued sunshine, and every day 
more or less walking was done. Soon I began climb- 
ing the hills, and in a week, the mountains that sur- 
round the city and small valley, the great Sierra 
range rising eight and ten thousand feet to the west, 
within a mile of the city, wdth many lofty peaks which 
reach nearly to the per])etual snow line. To the 
northwest there was a c<jue-sli'aped peak, that seemed 
to be the highest point on the range. The gla^ss 
showed that it was a mass of broken stone that had 
been >hivered by eniptive fire. In sjiite of my weak- 
ness an intense desire to stand on that peak took pos- 
session of my mind, and day by day increased. Many 
trips were taken to the foot hills in that direction, and 
then to the tops of the lower summits. 

This continued climl)ing gave me increasing 
■strength until at the end of a month I quietly stepped 
out one morning, saying I was going in that direc- 
tion, and was soon on the trail that crossed the 
mountain, in a gap twenty-five hundred feet below 
the peak and a mile from its base. An old rancher 
at the foot of the ascent tried to stop me from the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 199 

adventure, but on failing, gave me some apples and 
told me where I would find water on the gap, and 
probably one place on the ascent. He gave me this 
advice: Xever follow rivers ascending or descending 
mountains; keep on the ridges and spurs and you 
are safe; you will not get lost. And I have found 
this the true way for mountain travel everywhere. 
I began the ascent about 8 a. m., and continued 
steadily moving upward, resting every two hundred 
yards, with frequent stops to admire the vast pano- 
rama that was opening around me. The first spring 
was dry, and although I was tired and thirsty I moved 
on. About 1 p. m. I reached the pass, found the 
spring and quenched my thirst, and ate one of my 
apples; but my ears began to pain me very much, 
accompanied with roaring and throbbing. This I 
stopped by filling them and tying a handkerchief 
on the outside. My breathing was not only perfect, 
but exhilarating. An old quart fruit can was found, 
cleansed and filled with water, and after a rest the final 
ascent began. The excitement and the hope of suc- 
•-^ess, and the pure, life-giving air, made me forget 
my weakness, and a few minutes after 2 p. m. I was 
on the summit. What a scene lay before me. To 
the eastward, the vast expanse extending to the Rocky 
Mountains, dotted with numerous intervening ranges. 
To the far southeast was the great Raliston desert, 



200 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

shimmering in the sunlight, with the sharply-out- 
lined Hot Springs range of mountains. To the north- 
east was the expanse of Carson Sink and intervening 
lakes, with a wonderful view made up of foot hills, 
valleys, towns, darkness and A^olcanic mountains be- 
longing to the age of fire. AVashoe lake, twenty miles 
away, seemed right at my feet — just a stone's throw. 
The scene north, west and south was beyond descrip- 
tion. 'No words in our language can express my feel- 
ings while gazing on the many snow-capped moun- 
tains that filled the horizon; and the interminable 
infolding, unfolding and eircumfolding of the stu- 
.pendous range, as seen from one of its summits. It 
is impossible to portray what can be seen, not only 
from that peak, but from many others in that part of 
the range. 

I remained for about an hour, but I could have 
stayed for days had not the return been a pressing 
necessity. So I drank my last sup of water, ate my 
apple, ajid with feelings bordering on inspiration, 
the descent was begun. At the spring the fruit can 
jwas filled, and the downward grade, with it^ tiresome 
holding back, w^as before me. As I went up I had 
carefully marked places where distance could be saved 
by cut oifs. Some of them shortened the way by 
several hundred yards, and one as much as a mile or 
.more. In making it I had a new experience. Soon 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 201 

after leaving the trail, I came out from the scrub upon 
a broad sand flow, extending nearly to the base of 
the descent. I stepped on it and it seemed to be solid/ 
but in a short distance I came to loose sand and 
commenced sinking. In an instant I knew the dan- 
ger and the proper course to pursue. I threw myself 
flat on my back and lifted my feet to the surface, 
and began rolling over towards the right. In a= 
moment the whole body of the flow began moving 
down hill -^vith me on it. The situation was now 
rather uncomfortable, and I looked anxiously ahead. 
Off to the right, some distance below me, and well off 
to the edge of the flow, a small pine tree was stand- 
ing. By rolling over and gradually working acrass 
the current, I gx)t in line with the tree, then went 
straight to it, and was soon astride and hugging it like 
a friend in need. Being safe, I now watched the 
strange phenomenon. The flow was two hundred feet 
wide and several feet deep, and moved as fast as a 
man could walk, with a singular humming or musical 
sound, which was intensified by obstructions as rocks 
and trees. The descent was nearly a thousand feet, 
at an angle of about 30 or 35 degrees. Bv a detour 
through the scrub I reached the bottom of the de^ 
scent, where the sand wias slowdy piling up among 
the rocks and small pines. The danger would have 
been in being covered up and suffocated in the fine, 



202 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

yielding sand, like being in a bin of flaxseed. The 
steady disintegration of the rocks and shale of which 
the mountains are formed, the extremes of winter 
frost and summer heat cause this continued crumbling 
away, and produce sand flows. 

When 1 returned that evening my strength was 
all gone, and I was completely exhausted. The ex- 
citement of the day had been too much for my situ- 
ation, so I had to lie down at once and keep close 
all next day. I did not tell what I had done until 
sure that I was over the effects; then it was hard for 
tliem to believe I had accomplished the feat in one 
day, but my descriptions removed all doubt. That 
was another landmark in life, another picture that 
will not fade, Imt unfortunately cannot be depicted. 
So the days passed until the snow began to cover the 
mountain tops. Then, like a bird of passage, I started 
southward. 

From Carson City I went directly to San Fran- 
cisco and there made arrangements to see as much of 
Southern California as I could by rail. The first trip 
was down the coast line route, through San Jose and 
that beautiful valley, where everything seems tend- 
ing towards perfection in gardening, fruit growing 
and farming. The rich, alluvial soil, under intelli- 
gent cultivation, is yielding marv^elous results, and 
it- is a joy to look out on some of the rural scenes 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 203 

up the valley. Irrigation has been brought to a high 
state of perfection, and the results are not surpassed 
by the highest attainments of the Hollanders and Bel- 
gians. From there I went southward, up the fertile 
and rapidly-developing Salinas Valley and on to Tem- 
pleton and San Luis Obispo, through a new, but 
very promising country. At Templeton there was 
being opened up a portion of countrN^ that had a 
grander future than any other part of the coast in that 
latitude. This evidences the sagacity of the Jesuits, 
who realized the fact and founded a mission there, 
the ruins of which still remain. One adobe building, 
covered with red tile, has been standing over a hun- 
dred years, and will stand many years longer if undis- 
turbed. 

Upon returning to San Francisco I started south 
on the San Joaquin line of the SoutheiTi Pacific Rail- 
road, and passed up tbat rich valley and was not 
idle with my eyes, ears or field glass. Real estate 
men were loud in their praise and persistent in so- 
liciting land buyers to purchase in that valley, and 
they were almost a nuisance on the trains: man^' of 
them wide-moutlied, brazen, unprincipled and offen- 
sive. 

T called at Tnlare to see some old neighl'Ors 
who had stopped there. Some practical fniit grow- 
ers iireed me to i>-o l^ack to Merced and Fresno, and 



204 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tliej would meet all expense. So I consented. At 
Merced I was met by a former Indianian and driven 
out through the wonderful vineyards and fruit or- 
chards, and then out to the naked desert, where there 
was no improvement, that I might understand the 
amazing capabilities of that desert when watered and 
cultivated. The contrast was almost beyond belief. 
In places, within GO feet of the most vigorous and 
luxuriant vines and fruit trees, the ground would be 
perfectly barren and destitute of vegetation; yet the 
%'ines and trees were growing in the same kind of soil. 
Two days spent at Merced gave me an intelligent 
idea of its future. At Fresno I was met by friends 
who also drove me about through rapidly expanding 
fruit orchards and vineyards. Here the celebrated 
raisin grape seemed to have attained perfection both 
in quality and quantity. Looking out across the wide 
valley, it was difficult even to imagine what the future 
of that productive land would be, for the snow-cov- 
ered mountains told me there would never be a lack 
of water while snow fell. 

'E-etuming to Tulai-e, my friend and I had a 
pleasant social time, and then the journey southward 
was resumed. But fate ^vas again adverse. At 
Bakersfield I fell into the hands of the manager of 
the T5,000-acre ranch, near the town, who for two 
davs fed and carted me over the larae farm. The 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 205 

sight was gmiul and surprising. There were 500 
brood mares on the land, wdth an average stock of 
2,000 head of horses, 15,000 head of cattle, and 
several thousand head of sheep. The improvement 
sheds looked more like the repair shops of a railroad 
than anything belonging to a fann. There were a 
dozen traction engines, with as many threshers and 
separators, and binders and mowers by the score. 
One raili-oad harvester cut, threshed and stacked 
up the grain while moving as fast as the average 
trot of a horse. The long line of hay ricks, straw 
ricks and other kinds of food indicated the amount 
it took to feed their live stock. The garden where 
the vegetables were raised covered five acres, and the 
eating house was like an immense hotel. While 
there I witnessed their mode of branding the colts. 
They were all in small pens for easy handling. With 
a hot iron they marked each one on the neck under 
the mane, with the date, age and the number; this 
was entered in a book by a clerk standing by. It 
was often times visible for life, and served as a means 
of identification and of tracing pedigree. They fur- 
nished a salesman 300 hoi*ses per year in San Fran- 
cisco, and shipped fine stock all over the world. 

This detention on my journey was the most in- 
teresting of any, as it opened wider the possibilities 
of that country; The water for irrigation was sup- 



206 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

])lied by a large cajial out of King river. Leaving 
Bakersfield in the morning, I passed the celebrated 
loop on the Tehiehapa mountains, where the railroad 
crosses itself, the first engineering feat of the kind 
ever accomplished. It was in the forenoon when we 
passed it. The sun was favorable^ and I had a sat- 
isfactory view. Though wonderful in results, it is 
simple and easily to be understood. But loops have 
now be<'r)me commcm in crossing mountains, and have 
ceased to astonish engineers. Beyond the loop we ran 
out into the Mojave desert, a very singular region, 
where the whole barren plain is covered thickly with 
sand dunes — ^^peculiarly-shaped and oddly-grouped 
sand hills. As yet speculation has failed to explain 
the reason, but for some cause or other, they give 
the landscape a forbidding, gloomy look, ^o one 
wants to stop there. 

At Sangus I took a branch road and ran down to 
Hanta Barbara, on the coast. It is one of the old 
S]:)anish towns, beautifuly located in a green valley, 
and surrounded on two sides by low mountains. It 
is one of the quiet, restful, sleepy places, where one 
wants to go to enjoy genuine laziness, for the scenery 
is soothing and the breeze is delightful. Retuni- 
ing to the main line. I coon reached the far-famed 
Los Angeles. 

T^pon my first visit t(^ this city, time and oppor- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN 



207 



timity was not at my command for sight-seeing, but 
now there was both time and the will to see all. Mj 
first move was to run out on all the short line rail- 
roads touching the city, three or four going to would- 
be commercial ports on the coast, then down the shore 
to San Diego, near the Mexican line. A day was 
spent in examining the possibilities of that great city 
of the future. There was a port and harbor that 
cannot be surpassed for safety, capacity and all such 
requirings, but the city Avill be slow in building. It 
is too far south, down in the relaxing latitude where 
men lose their energy and activity; it will never be a 
San Francisco or a Portland. Upon my return to 
Los Angeles I ran out on the railroads for a hundred 
or two miles, through all the present and prospective 
fruit region; stopped at Riverside, San Jacinto, Cot- 
ton, San Eeraardino, Pomona, Passadena, and many 
other fruit centers; then went to rest at the home of 
my friend. Dr. Furnas, who had settled at El Modena, 
38 miles from Tx)S Angeles. Instead of resting, he 
and other old friends in the village of 300 people (I 
knew all but one family) took me out driving every 
day, or climbing the adjoining mountains. In this 
way I learned much of the daily life of the inhabit- 
ants, and talked with them respecting their prospec- 
tive hopes of success, and saw many examples of 
prosperity as well as many sad, disastrous failures. 
The great boom had just collapsed, and there were 



208 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

hundreds of families completlv ruined and almost 
destitute. There were many skeleton towns and 
future ''great cities" wholly deserted, and the stakes 
which marked the city lots were still standing alone 
amid the solitude, ^ot a few around me were heap- 
ing curses on the cause of their i*uin; families who 
had lost' their all were sending east to their friends 
for monev to go back. To add to the troubles, the 
grape blight had passed over the land, and the scale 
bug was attacking orange trees, which was the cause 
of much anxiety. Taking all these things together, 
I was fortunate in the time of my visit. When I 
first saw El Modena it was at the beginning of the 
boom, before the grape blight had done its work, and 
the whole land was in a glow of extravagant ex- 
2>ectation, and all the people seemed almost incapable 
of sober reasoning. Xow things were at the opposite 
extreme. 

Among the many interesting places visited was 
the ostrich farm, where there are over 100 live birds, 
some of them gigantic creatures, attaining greater 
height and weight than in Cape Colony, from whence 
the stock was imported. In the company were sev- 
eral of the original importation, which had been se- 
lected for theii' size and perfect development; but 
the offspring had excelled them, showing the envir- 
onment of Southern California superior to Southern 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 209 

Africa. The speculation had not been as successful 
a^ expected, but was paying expenses. 

One picnic was held on top of the mountains, 
two miles away. In going we passed through an 
orange orchard, with the ripening fruit beginning 
to fall, of which we partook as hungry people only 
can. Three times in the ascent we found rare wild 
flowers, considered as delicate greenhous'e plants in 
Indiana. It was a beautiful day, and the pure moun- 
tain breeze was very bracing to the invalids, and 
their care-takers had little trouble in looking after 
them. In the afternoon we returned by a small fruit 
farm, and found an abundant supply of second crop 
strawberries, of which we wxre not slow to partake. 
Farther on we ate ripe tomatoes from vines two years 
old, and by a unanimous vote we resolved to say no 
more about the day's findings. 

Irrigation was one of the subjects that claimed 
my attention. My son was extensively engaged and 
interested in it. He had studied and collected state 
reports of engineers, from which I gained much in- 
formation, and could the more intelligently study 
the subject in the sections where the greatest per- 
fection had been attained. It is still in its infancy, 
and it is Avonderful to see what has already been ac- 
complished without anticipating the future. But of 
4;his I feel assured that inside of fifty years the larger 



210 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

portion of our people will be living in the irrigating 
region, where the desert now is, and the water ques- 
tion will have become the absorbing and vital one, 
not only to agriculture, but to future national growth 
and expansion. 

At length I bade a kind good-bye to the doctor 
and his family, and my many other friends, and re- 
sumed my homeward journey, passing through the 
great waterless basin, three hundred feet below the sea 
level. It seems to have been the bed of a former 
lake, or arm of the gulf, which it is now proposed 
to fill again by turning the Colorado river <jut of its 
present channel. The new lake would cover many 
thousands of s<:iuai*e miles, and change the climate 
of a large territory of now barren sand. It was a 
gala day with the Indians at Yuma, Arizona, where 
we cross the Rio Grande river ; they were ^ out on 
dress parade bv the hundreds. Many were display- 
ing for sale the usual bead basket, plaited, woven and 
painted work, ranging from a baby's moccasin to a 
flaming red blanket, all very ingeniously and neatly 
done. 

We passed next into the gloom of the Yuma 
•desert, which had not lost any of its interest and 
dreariness since I first crossed, it. The passage was 
all made by daylight this time. There wa^ a range 
of sand hills not seen before, resembling the dunes 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 211 

Oil the Mojave desert, init the ever-present giant 
cactus grew on the sides and summits as on the level. 
It is very curious t(3 see the way the railroad is pro- 
tected from the drifting sand. The lighter portion 
of the sand, when carried by the wind, follows the 
same laws of drifting snow, and the same kind of 
guards and wind brakes are built. The heavy, roll- 
ing sand follows the same law of flowing water, and 
it is a singular sight to see long lines of deep, wide 
ditches where water never flows. As a ditch is filled, 
others on a higher level are dug until the accumula- 
tion changes the flow, and sends to one side to con- 
stantly repeat the process. The life of the section 
hands out on the arid plains is exceedingly dreary and 
laborious, often suffering the extremes of thirst and 
heat. 

A stop of a few hours was made at Tucson, 
Arizona, a place that mav one day become an im- 
portant center of business; the valley is fertile and 
water abundant. We also stayed several hours at 
Benson. The country around looked so extremely 
forbidding that I queried why any one should wish 
to live in such a place; but the express agent pointed 
to a baggage car where there was a large stack of 
gold and silver bars piled up like cord wood. They 
were collected from mines down in Mexico and were 
in the crude stage, but represented immense value 



212 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

when purified. ]\Ien will go anywhere for gold, and 
so were living in this forbidding place. I was glad 
when we started, for the desolation was oppressive 
to my mind, and I wanted to reach the mountains 
ahead for relief. And beyond were the wonderful 
moving sand hills, which would noAv have additional 
interest, and it was as anticipated. The mountains 
were of the old volcanic time, and were full of cur- 
ious, fantastic combinations of rugged views not seen 
in any other mountain foniiations, and are peculiar 
to that great volcanic belt, two thousand miles long 
and eight hundred wide and almost treeless. 

When the sand hills were sighted, a strong wind 
was blowing from the scmthwest, which carried the 
fine sand in clouds, just like the fine, drifting snows 
on the prairies of loAva and Nebraska. Sometimes 
the clouds would reach the train and fill the cars with 
dust that settled like fine flour on clothing and seats. 
Tlie dust was very suggestive, and I made note of 
the connection there might be between it and the 
new theory of the luminous character of our atmos- 
phere depending upon the atoms of dust floating in 
it, and that the nucleus of every raindrop was an 
atom of dust, which absorbed moisture until it could 
no longer float, and so descended in the form of rain. 
•Here was one of the sources of supply for atmos- 
pheric dust, so the time from there to El Pa^o v/as 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 218 

spent ill trying to reconcile the new theory with old 
prejudices. 

At El Paso my cousins welcomed me again to 
their home, and we spent many hours rehearsing our 
adventures, for they, too, were wanderers to some 
extent. The reminiscences of early life had to be 
called up and discussed; the results of my present trip 
were talked OA^er; latest news from the old home 
eagerly listened to, winding up with local happenings. 

There was a Catholic festival being celebrated 
on the Mexican side in Paso Del Norte, and one 
of the accompaniments w^as a succession of bull fights. 
My own desire, and a small amount of urging by iiiy 
cousins, decided me to see one. Accompanied by 
one of my relatives, I crossed the river and went 
to the place w^here the daily tights were held. It 
Avas in a large, circular enclosure, with seats capable 
of seating several thousand people ; the area was about 
100 feet in diameter. This day's performance was 
with six bulls, three of which refused to tight and 
were hissed out of the ring. One made some show 
of resistance, but was finally sent out in disgrace. 
One made a good fight, and was taken out with 
honors; and one, the last, was frantic and furious 
with previous torture when he entered the ring, mak- 
ing it dangerous for -all within reach. One horse 
was gored and hurled to the ground, and the rider 

14 



214 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

badly bruised; one man, when pursued, escaped hy 
a hand's breadth behind the safeguard. After being 
tortured with barbed arrows thrust in and hanging 
on his shouklers and sid^s, and gored with lances, 
the executioner came into the ring with a long, dou- 
ble-edged sword. The bull was decoyed by red fla^ 
to the opposite side of the ring, then all ran behind 
the barrier. On looking around the bull saw the 
executioner waving the red flag defiantly. In an 
instant the bull uttered a fierce bellow, lowered his 
head and ran at full speed right on the man, who 
seemed to be doomed to certain death; but with a 
dexterity and agility perfectly amazing, he thrust 
the sword between the shoulders to the heart of the 
bull, withdrew it and sprang aside, while the animal 
made one more convulsive spring and fell dead, the 
life blood spouting from the wound. This was done 
so quickly that the eye could not follow all the move- 
ments of the executioner. I have not seen such skill 
displayed an\^vhere, or in any kind of business, as 
displayed by this '^Matadore.'' Yet the whole scene 
is cruel and brutal in the extreme; there is nothing re- 
fining or elevating, but everything that is brutalizing 
and degTading. When we see a bull fight we under- 
stand why the Spanish race is on the down grade in 
civilization and national strength; if they had no 
other sin, bull fighting would be enough to ruin their 
moralitv in a few centuries. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 2J5 

From early boyliood J had settled it in my mind 
that one day 1 would see the celebrated Falls oi 
Montezuma, in Mexico. The first desire came from 
reading Peter Parley's stories, and it grew with my 
youth and strengthened with my strength. So being 
free from hindering causes, I determined to make 
the trip from El Paso. To determine was to act, so I 
started full of anticipation, and an inward feeling 
that I would succeed. 

The tirst two hundred miles were without spei-ial 
interest; valley, mountain and plain were a continu- 
ation of what lay northward. After reaching Chi- 
huahua, the country assumes distinctive features; 
strangely-formed mountain peaks, seemingly capped 
with artificial towers, and massive walls. Others aj>- 
pear to have been thrust up from the valley with 
flat tops like the hills in the Yellowstone River valley. 
The foothills are precipitous bluifs and cliifs instead 
of having rounded forms; but the most singular fea- 
ture is the immense quantity and variety of cacti. 
In places there are hundreds of acres covered so 
densely with the fan-leaf plant that the heaviest lo- 
comotive, if put on full speed, would not penetrate 
the mass fifty yards. Other places are very large 
groves of the various forms of tree cacti, giving the 
valley an<l hills a picturesque look which cannot be 
described for want of a standard of c<>mparison. for 



216 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the like is not found outside that great central valley. 
The towns and cities also become very interesting; 
the further away from the border the more distinc-" 
tively foreign they become, the style and customs 
of the people change, the carts, wagons, agricultural 
implements, mode of farming, gardening, local trans- 
portation, all seems rude and primitive. The houses 
have an Eastern look, .^the internal domestic arrange- 
ments savor of Eastern life, and we are startled at the 
reminders of Bible descriptions of houses and home 
life that present themselves. As we go forward the 
country shows a strange contradiction of prosperity 
and decline. Sometimes we pass along lines of stone 
walls that enclose deserted lields, and tine old S]mn- 
ish mansions in ruin; then we pass the cnimbling 
remains of old adohe churches, with broad lands be- 
C(~)ming a wilderness; then, in striking contrast, we 
will pass broad acres of grain and fine gardens, with 
a thriving, active town in the center, where thin^ 
look bright and promising. The ruins are the re- 
mains of Spanish conquest and church authority, both 
now gone. Mexican Independence ruined the Span- 
ish grandees, and chronic revolution broke the op- 
pression of the church; and these are the ques- 
tions hard to solve as to which was the better, Spain^s 
stability, or modern revolution? Judged by appear- 
ances, there was as much bread produced on the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN, 217 

now waste lands of th^ grandees and church, under 
Spanish nile, as by the present generation, accord- 
ing to population. At many places we see where 
gold and silver mines, once productive, have been 
abandoned, and at places where the mines are still 
worked, the natives use the rude, clumsy machinery 
in use a hundred years ago. The new houses being 
built are like those of the past, no modern improve- 
rrients introduced; everything, so far as humanity 
is concerned, is fixed and crystalized. To thinking^ 
people, I find it a matter of surprise that <iur next- 
door neighbor to the south should really be five hun- 
dred years behind us in the essential things of life 
— twelve-year-old children compared to parents. 

So I went on 1,224 miles, peering around on 
every side, plying my fellow-passengers with ques- 
tions of the reason why for many strange things, 
the names of plants, trees, birds and animals. At 
one place a striking scene met my gaze, for it was 
scriptural to the letter. A wealthy man, who planted 
10,000 acres of corn each year, was out with fifty 
yoke of cattle plowing in a field a mile wide; and 
quite like the prophet r)f old, this man had the en- 
tire fifty yoked before him. As he rode slowly be- 
hind them, the whole thing was a great contrast to 
the ranch at Bakersfield, in California. On one 
occasion T o-ot the worst for my curiositv. T was 



218 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

watching the changing views of a beautiful lake near 
by, and innocently asked the conductor its name" 
then there was an explosion of merriment at my 
expense. It was a perfect *'mirage/' while the real 
lake was miles away, yet I watched the illusive pictui-e 
with unabated interest, and I see it in memory as a 
genuine lake. 

But all my political speculation, eager question- 
ing, etc., suddenly ended when we slowed up at the 
•depot of the city of the Montezumas. My joy at 
realizing- that I had lived to accomplish this hope 
of early life was little less than when I stood on the 
Great Pyramid in Egypt, or walked on the walls of 
Jeiiisalem. As S(X>n as a room was secured I sought 
the grand cathedral, and from its highest spire viewed 
the wonderful surroundings; the first things I looked 
for with my glass were the old causeways that 
were so important in the conquest, and the defense 
of the first conquest; then the lake, the amphitheatre 
of the mountains and the volcano. The causeways 
were nearly all destroyed, the lake was nearly drained, 
but the mountains were there with a dark cloud of 
smoke ascending from the crater. 

At my feet, and far around, lay the city, so 
unlike all othei-s in America, with its thronging 
thousands, who, too, were unlike any other people 
on the continent. The greatest surprise was the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 219 

oriental character of all the older portion of the city; 
from my outlook I could see a complete counterpart 
of eastern cities built centuries ago; every feature 
and outline of the make-up filled me with astonish- 
ment. There was nothing American about it but 
the street cars. Instead of the rattle and clang of 
drays, hacks and wheeled vehicles, there were thous- 
ands of porters, men and women, bearing boxes, bales 
and bundles on their backs as they did in the time of 
Solomon. 

There were whole squares enclosed with a solid 
wall, with but one entrance through a large arched 
gateway into an open area or court in the center, 
and all the houses opened into it; the roofs were 
flat as in Bible lands. All this was unexpected, and 
in one sense a disappointment; there was no trace 
of the Montezumas left; all was Oriental and foreign. 

A^Hien we left the cathedral I hurried to the 
museum to see the great calendar stone, which had 
become such an object of wonder to the archaeologists 
of the world. On entering the great hall it stood 
right before me, in front of the main entrance. It 
is a circular stone, about eight feet in diameter, and 
about the proportion of a great mill stone in thick- 
ness. Every square inch of its surface is covered 
with hieroglyphics. The outer circumference is 
curiously carved into regular irregular figures, then 



220 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

a perfect circle is drawn and divided into degrees 
as accurately as our skilled experts could have done. 
Then the whole face is di^dded by concentric circles, 
and the spaces coA^ered with indecipherable figures 
of men, birds, animals and mystic characters. There 
is the most perfect regularity and seemingly scien- 
tific and mechanical skill in every part of the record. 
The representations are distinctly different from any- 
thing seen on Egyptian or Assyrian stones. They 
are more like characters used by the Hittites, as given 
by William Wright in a recent publication. Thus 
far the statement of the wonderful stone is a sealed 
book, and may long remain so. If it ever should 
be read, it mav reveal gi^eater facts and open up 
a wider field of research than the discoveries now 
being made by the various antiouarian associations. 
Who knows but the world was peopled from x\merica? 
Who knows but what Yucatan and Central America 
may have been to primitive man what England is to 
the world of to-day ? The world has witnessed more 
radical changes in opinion than this would be, in spite 
of deep-rrK)ted prejudices and racial selfishness. 

To me the calendar stone was most curious, yet 
there are many other relics of pre-historic time that 
carry us back into a past, that remains lost, but there 
is a striking and startling resemblance between it and 
rrianv of the discoveries made in Bible lands which 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



221 



belong to remote anticpiity. As I looked into the 
faces painted and moulded on the strong jugs and 
water jars that stood around the great hall, they 
spoke of a past civilization vet to be revealed — one 
that had the art of lifting huge blocks of stone 
and the idea of massiveness in their structures; the 
same thought of settled continuance as the people who 
are found in the oldest civilization known. Some- 
times I came u])on a relic that seemed to proclaim 
its African ongin, and every^vhere the indecipher- 
able hieroglyphics call to mind the lost Hittite. To 
my mind, there is not a shadow of evidence that any 
part of Mexican antiquity had a Mongolian or Asiatic 
origin. 

The saddest thing I saw in Mexico was the wreck 
and ruin wrought by the murderous and bigoted Span- 
iard; even the calendar stone bears marks of the 
sledge hammer wielded by fanatical Spanish priests, 
and collected fragments of priceless works of art attest 
to the thorough manner in which they did the work of 
diabolical ruin. The world may never know again 
who built those strong, lost cities, or by what power 
they fell, but their ruins will appeal in dumb elo- 
quence to the lovers of the grand and beautiful 
through all time. 

When T left the museum I turned my attention 
to the tides of life that were thronging the streets; 



222 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

mueli of all I saw was new. The contrast between 
the extremes of humanity was very noticeable. The 
pure Castilian type were as tine specimens of human 
beings as we see anywhere; they seemed the remnant 
of a lost race among strangers. The other extreme, 
or the sample which I took for it, was a company 
of mountaineer Indians wdio came into the city with 
.small donkeys loaded with evergreens for decorations 
at festivals. The men and women had nothing on 
but a single grain sack, with a hole cut for the 
head and anns, which hung loose about them. They 
were of dark brown complexion, with long, glossy, 
black hair, and appeared to be enjoying their mea- 
sure of life as well as the grandees. 

There is a possibility that the original Aztec 
race may yet return to power and re-establish their 
nationality, for the Aztec countenance seemed to pre- 
dominate in the multitude, though the Spanish pre- 
vailed among- the business ranks. I strolled through 
the market on the great square in front of the cathe- 
dral, and the large market houses in other parts. 
I also got on the street cai-s and rode to all parts 
of the city, w4th no particular object in view, but 
always looking and learning. In the older portions 
all is primitive, in the more modern there are many 
innovations. Modern mansions stand beside Moor- 
ish structures; in places the enclosing walls are broken 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 223 

tliroiigh and modern street fronts break the monotony, 
bnt the thousands of shambling, half -trotting porters 
are everywhere, acting hoi-se, dray and hack, car- 
rying loads we would think beyond powers of en- 
durance, and they neyer cease to be marvelous and 
entertaining. 

Many of the articles in the market were un- 
known to me, and often I did not know their use. 
Compounds cut, dipped, poured and smeared about 
that looked and smelled repulsive to the untrained 
eve and nose. Yet when I laid down at night and 
summed up the day's observation, I came to the 
conclusion that there is a measure of enjoyment in 
almost any condition of life, though it may be through 
ignorance of anything better. 

A person with an eye to the sublime and beau- 
tiful, with all the gradations to ludicrous and re- 
volting, can spend several months in the City of 
Mexico and find something new every day, and wi-ite 
an amusing book. Though it was in December, it 
was too warm to walk on the sunny side of the 
street, and ladies carried parasols when out shopping; 
beautiful flowers were blooming in the open air, and 
to me it seemed more like early June than Decem- 
l>er. I saw but few cloaks of any kind, and mine 
was the only fur cap in the place, and I was called 
an old Russian for wearing it. Hotel fare was cheaper 



224 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tbaii in the states, but the food was red hot with 
pepj)er, and my month and throat at first refused 
to tolerate the heatexl applications, othei'^vise Mexican 
food was quite passable. 

On the return trip I traveled by day what I 
had passed over by night in going down, and made 
short stops at some of the old cities: Irapuato, Aguas, 
Oalientes, Zoca VcK-as; then at Torean took the Mexi- 
can Central Railroad, going eastward to Eagle Pass 
on the Rio Grande, stopping on the way at Trevino 
and Sabinas. This route was more entertaining than 
any I had seen in Mexico. There was a continued 
succession oi mountain ranges and broad valleys, 
many of which were in cultivation, and new forms 
of the cactus trees apjx'ared; the most beautiful, the 
Palf cactus, which grows twenty to thirty feet high, 
crowned with a dome of beautiful flowers, with long 
pendajit fronds, that like the aspen trees were always 
in motion, swayed by the slightest breeze. 

Between Trevino and Sabinas an incident oc- 
curred that gives a glimpse of Mexican life in one 
particular form. A desperado and a companion had 
committed a crime uj) towards Sabinas and fled to 
the mountains southward, aiming to reach a certain 
]:)ass befc>re being intercepted; the road ran within 
a mile or less of the pass. As we neared it the trail 
came around a foothill in sight of the railroad. AVhen 



OF ADDISON OOFFIN. 225 

in a favorable position the train stoppeti and two 
Mexican otMeei's, the conductor, and others, were 
eagerly scanning the trail. 1 knew nothing of the 
matter up to this time, but through curiosity I leveled 
my glass in that direction, and saw two horsemen 
coming down in view. Suspecting- something was 
up, I handed the conductor my glass, who looked 
and excitedly handed it to the oldest officer, and 
when he looked he almost dropped the glass as h^e 
returned it. Instantly the signal was given; the 
train ran backward at high speed to near the pass. 
Before it was still the officers leaped to the ground; 
the older ran like a greyhound for the pass, the 
younger one for the nearest point on the trail where 
it crossed a deep gully. In the meantime the horse- 
men had taken akrm and spurred their horses to 
full speed. The race now became exciting, but seem- 
ingly just in the nick of time the young officer reached 
the gully and planted himself by a large rcM3k and 
opened fire at tolerably short range. The horsemen 
dashed down the gully, which was dry, and still 
made for the pass, but the young man made a bee 
line for the pass, shouting to his partner. In a little 
time the riders emerged from the ravine only to 
find themselves cut off, and between two fires. They 
also began firing rapidly, and soon one reeled and 
swayed in his saddle, then recovered himself, and both 



226 LIFE AND ThAYELS 

dashed down the side of the mountain, followed by 
the voung officer, while the other held the pass. The 
battle seemed to be over and the train moved on to 
make up lost time, but my field glass was quite pop- 
ular the rest of the journey, for it had the credit 
of giving the officer the advantage in the adventure. 
How^ the chase finallv ended I never knew. 

Eaerle Pass is the point where the Mexican Cen- 
tral Railroad crosses the Rio Grande into Texas, 
and then joins the Southera Pacific at Spoferd Junc- 
tion. I arrived at the junction in the early morn- 
ing, and had to wait a few^ hours for the train from 
the Pacific coast. When it came I was surprised to 
see one of my friends from Indiana step oif the train 
to look at the town. I had parted from him a month 
before in California; he was then going north to- 
wards Washington and British Columbia, while I was 
going in the opposite direction. He had made his 
far northern trip and I my southern, and botli were 
beginning to be homesick and were working home- 
ward. We traveled together to Kew Orleans, then 
separated, and a month later met in Indianapolis 
again. We were Americans, and this shows what a 
Avandering propensity we have; my friend, like my- 
self, had the warm Carolina blood in his veins. 

The journey across SraitheiTi Texas was not in- 
teresting; the country is nearly a uniform level i)lain. 



OF ADDISON (;OFFIN. '227 

iiiiicb of it covered with soj'iib timber or wide prairies, 
ill places well cultivated, in others lying waste with- 
out inliabitants. It is much the same with Southern 
Louisiana; the coast is low and swampy, monotonous 
and dreary looking. The few splendid farms we 
passed only intensified the dreariness of the marsh- 
land. My stop in Xew Orleans was short, a state- 
ment of which is given in connection wdth my first 
visit m 1844. Jlj homeward trip w^as by way of 
Jackson and Meredith, Miss.; Birmingham, Ala.; 
Chattanooga, Tenn. ; Cincinnati, Ohio, and Indian- 
apolis, Indiana. I started southwest, returned from 
tlie east, having traveled nearly 12,000 miles, and 
been from home a little over four months. It would 
fill many books to describe all that w^as seen, heard 
and endured. There were many mountain scenes so 
grand and l)eautiful, with historic events associated 
with them, that it would take much time and space 
to do them justice. There were land slides where 
whole sides of mountains had given w^ay and gone 
to the valley, thus changing local conditions; cloud 
bursts had occuiTed on the mountains, producing 
floods in the canyons that carried stones and bowlders 
down to the valley and on the plain in size and 
quantity almost past belief. The bursting of reser- 
voirs, breaking of lake barriers, wnth attending flood 
and ruin; the wonderful achievements, the toil, risk 



228 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and danger encountered and overcome by the freight- 
ers before the railroad was built; the thrilling events 
in the early mining camps when lynch law was the 
only standard of justice; the battles with the mur- 
derous Apache and other Indians; the sudden rise 
of penniless prospectors to great wealth, and falls from 
wealth to want. All these subjects would each fill 
a book that would be stranger than fiction, and take 
the reader back to living scenes which will soon be 
forgotten and lost to history. There was not a day 
during the long trip but some new discovery was 
made, some new historical event learned, some new 
departure from conventional lines that aroused old 
time prejudice ^and crystalized nations. 



CHAPTER EIGHT. 



Visit to the Old Home in North Carolina — Winter 
of 1890 and 1891 Spent at Guilford College— 
Again in 1892, '93 and '94 — Excursion to Oregon 
— Oregon Yearly Meeting — Excursion to Colum- 
bia — Trip to British Columbia — Visit to My Son 
and Carson City — The Outing on the Lake and on 
the Mountains — Yellowstone National Park — Ee- 
turn Home via Kansas and World's Fair. 

There was not a day or an hour that I did not 
feel the hand of the Lord upholding me in my jour- 
ney, nor did I for a moment lose the assurance in 
my heart that I would return safely to my home. 

As before, my neighbors and friends w^anted me 
to give them the benefit of my observations in my 
journey, which I did in public talks and at private 
socials. Those especially interested were the young 
farmers and fruit gi'owers, who wished to know my 
judgment as to where they should go to settle for 
life. To thi« class I felt under obligations, for they 

15 (229:^ 



230 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

were earnest in their inquiries and anxious to know 
the possibilities and capabilities of the wide region 
over which I had passed. My gift of discerning the 
ability of men had increased by use. I had learned 
how to direct men by understanding their tempera- 
ment. So I would tell some to go to the new north- 
west, the Dacotahs and Montana, and the great wheat 
field; others to the fruit regions of Oregon and 
Washington; still others to the two extremes of Cal- 
ifornia, north and south. But those who had the 
mind and will to look farther ahead were directed 
to the arid regions of the great plains, where irriga- 
tion would soon transform the desert into a j^aradise 
of beauty and productiveness. 

In 1890 T went back to my old home in North 
Carolina to atten<l Fnends' Yearly Meeting; the time 
of holding it had been changed from November to 
August. Several years had passed since I had at- 
tended this annual gathering, and the reunion with 
old friends and the associations of the scenes of my 
youth was very enjoyable; and the many rehearsals 
of adventures through which I had passed made 
our socials bright and happy opportunities. A month 
or more was s]>ent in visiting around New Grarden, 
then I returned home. My friends were united in 
remarking that my health had improved (for I was 
still an invalid) and I felt that it was true, for I 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 231 

realized that mj native air was what I needed; so 
it became a settled fact that at the beginning of 
winter I should return to Guilford College for the 
season of 1890-91. The mild climate, the kindly as- 
sociation with old friends and contact with the bright 
young life of the students, was like the renewing of 
wasted energy by sweet rest. 

It may .be well to finish the history of home 
travel before going abroad, so the whole subject may 
be connectedly understood. As I still improved by 
going south, the winters of 1891-92, 1893-94 and 
1891-95 were spent at Guilford College. Local trips 
were taken while there to Wilmington, on the coast, 
and into South Carolina, to a fish exhibit at Xewbem, 
and to the mountains, etc., etc. 

The Friends in Oregon had petitioned Iowa 
Yearly Meeting for the privilege of holding a Yeariy 
Meeting of their own at ]N"ewberg, in that state. 
Their request was granted, and it was announced that 
the new meeting would be held June 26th, 1893. 
To meet the wants of many Friends who wished to 
go to Oregon, I organized an excursion party for the 
occasion. "W e started from Chicago and went through 
in a tourist sleeping car over the Union Pacific and 
Oregon Short Line Railroads. The trip was success- 
ful and delightful; as I had been over the route be- 
fore, the various points of interest were noted and 



232 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Others not seen before admired and commented on. 
The volcanic reaion of Snake river was a wonder to 
all, and additionally so to me, for new things were 
constantly presenting themselves. The crossing of 
the Snake river mountains, the run down the Co- 
lumbia river, the splendid vi-ew of Mt. Hood, the 
Dalles, Multnoma Falls, the Palisades of the Colum- 
bia, were all seen and enjoyed by the party. To them 
the trip was almost like an enchanting dream or start- 
ling vision. 

At Portland we were met by friends who had 
made hotel and other arrangements for us, and the 
next day we ran out twentv-two miles to x^ewberg, 
the point of destination. As it frequently happens, 
I was surprised to find so many I knew. Some were 
my old neighbors and their children from North Car j- 
lina, and many more from Indiana, who, together 
with acquaintances from other places, made up most 
of the people of the town. When the meeting con- 
vened, I was still more surprised to find a large 
majonty of those in attendance were persons I had 
met in the eastern states. The meeting lasted six 
days, and was one continued happy reunion. Many 
had not met for periods of from five to thirty years, 
and almost eveiw vicissitude of real life had been seen 
and suffered, and I am glad to say that many, like 
myself, had reached the glad season of rest when the 
dav's work was done. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 233 

One of the party was a kinswoman of mine 
from JS'orth Carolina. She was in poor health, but 
was greatly benefited by the journey across the moun- 
tains, and much interested in all that we saw. My 
nephew and other friends took us over the hills and 
through the splendid prune orchards, that we might 
better understand the marvelous production of the 
Willamette Valley in apples, prunes, plums, cherries, 
pears and all small fruits. The owmer of a fourteen- 
year-old prune orchard was offered $800 per acre for 
the fruit on the trees, but did not sell, for he could 
make more by drying and packing it himself. For 
a nine-year-old orchard, $600 per acre was offered. 

On one of the prune farms near N^ewberg, an 
Oregon pine tree was trimmed to the top and sawed 
off where it was four inches in diameter, 120 feet 
from the ground. T'o show his skill in climbing and 
pnming, the man balanced himself horizontally on 
that four-inch top, then came down in safety. A 
tree trimmed in that way the right time of year will 
dry and keep a whole generation. 

At the close of the Yearly Meeting a grand 
steamboat, Fourth of July excursion was arranged 
to go to Multnoma Falls, 120 miles up the Colum- 
bia. There were nearly 850 in the excursion, and 
it proved a very interesting trip. While we were 
coming back it was proposed that a minister should 



284 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

preacli a sermon at the bow, and that I talk at the 
stern on the Land of the Midnight Snn; this was 
done. A humorous minister reported in Indiana 
that I delivered an address that was heard distinctly 
for twenty miles, but without explaining that the 
boat went twenty miles down stream while I was 
speaking. 

When the steamer stopped at Portland to let off 
passengers, I felt a sudden impulse to land and go 
north to British Columbia, and my invalid me<ie 
wanted to go also, declaring that she Avas strong 
enough for the trip. We stayed over night in the 
city and started in the early morning; ran down the 
Columbia, on the west side, to Groble, where there is 
a fenw boat, the next to the largest in the world, the 
one at Benecia and Port Costa, California, being the 
largest. Here the passenger and freight trains are 
feiTied across without jolt or jar, and it is a wonder- 
ful sight to see the huge ferry-boat propelled across 
the rapid current of the great river, and then glide 
into port and unload on the rails. It surpassed any- 
thing of the kind seen in Europe, nor is there a 
river in that grand division to compare with the Co- 
lumbia. From Kalama, on the "Washington side, we 
sped away through the lowlands and immense forests, 
where the lumbermen are spreading destruction on 
ever\' side, and \vi\] soon have one of the world's great- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 235 

est forests obliterated. It is in Western WasHngton 
that we see taller forests and longer timbers handled 
thah any^'here else; the largest I ever saw was 125 
feet long and three feet square. I have seen whole 
forests that were 300 feet high, but that was the 
largest solid, sawed stick that I saw. There is much 
uniformitv in the lay of the land until we reach 
Olympia, the present capitol of Washington; then 
begins the beautiful lake-like country, alternating 
with forests, farms and low marsh lands. 

At Tacoma we took steamer for Victoria, B. C, 
and almost as soon as we steamed out from land the 
unsurpassed beauty of Puget's Sound began to un- 
fold. Though I had read of its picturesque waters, 
the scene before me surpassed all expectations. Tbe 
next inspiring object that came to view is Mt. Ranier, 
which rises 1,400 feet above the horizon, glittering 
in the sunlight, with cleft summit where once its 
crater ndowed with fervent heat, now covered with 
perpetual snow. The dazzling white, as seen from 
the boat, is in vivid contrast to the dark green forest 
•that is at its base. As we wound among the manv 
islands and rounded the promontories, the scene was 
ever changing and always charming and beautiful. 
We were so absorbed in watching the green forests 
as they passed — for they came down to the water's 
edge, and were here and there broken by a prosper- 



236 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ous settlement, with green fields, orchards and hop 
fields — that we did not notice two other snowy sum- 
mits till they seemed to rise suddenly to the east- 
ward, emitting a crimson light from their crowns 
of snow as if illumined by a brilliant sunset. The 
waters of the sound increased in beautv, and the 
bright sunlight seemed to fall softly over forest, 
islands and the gleaming waters around us; we felt 
conscious that we were advancing northward, where 
the days are longer. While we were enjoving all 
this, far to the north Mt. Baker began to rise from 
the mountain range and its white cap shown like 
molten silver; and so the picture enlarged more and 
more. We finally turned from the enchanting view 
and looked westward towards Mt. Baker, and we 
were almost struck dumb with astonishment at the 
finishing touch to this magnificent panorama. To 
the west lay the Olympian mountains, like vast snow 
fields, and we st<x>d amazed at the dazzling scene, 
for we seemed to be in fairy land instead of the 
far off, almost unknown, uninteresting Puget Sound 
region. In all my travels over our broad land, in 
Bible land and in Europe, I had seen much water 
scenery, but the most beautiful that I ever beheld 
is Puget Sound and its surroundings. 

We landed in Victoria in the afternoon; after 
procuring rooms we started out to see the strange city 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 237 

with its foreign population. Everything — the houses, 
the business, the goods and merchandise and voice 
of the people — indicated that we were in the northern 
latitude, where the extremes of light and darkness, 
heat and cold, were great and vitality, though strong 
and enduring, was more sluggish than in the south- 
land. 

The next day we visited a large Joss house, or 
Chinese temple, and saw all their hideous images used 
in their religious ceremonies; we then went to the 
cathedral and the new Methodist church, then t(X)k 
the street car and rode out five miles to a fashion- 
able resort on a beautiful land-locked and rock-bound 
bay, with shell beach and curiously honey-combed 
rocks. On our return to the city, we went out 
seven miles to where a large, iron-clad man-of-war 
was nding at anchor. When we came back young 
Ballington Booth was holding an out-door meeting, 
so we mingled with the many thousands for an hour 
to hear his eloquence and matchless power of holding 
a vast multitude. 

We tinally repaired to our hotel tired, but well 
pleased with our day's work; the sun had set about 
9 p. m., and we could see to read until nearly 10 
p. m. By the calendar, there were four more hours' 
sunshine the 7th of July than at Greensboro, N. 
C, the same day. The trip down the Sound gave 



238 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

US a view of the other side, with new groupings of 
mountains, isknds, and shores, that finished the grand 
picture. 

When we returned to Newberg, Oregon, I found 
a dispatch from my son at Carson City, stating that 
he haxl business in San Francisco at a given date, 
and he would hke me to come to that city and return 
with him. This changed the original program, and 
1 shortened m^^ stay at Newberg and started south 
by rail, leaving my niece to follow later on. The 
railroad connecting Portland and Sacrameiito had 
been complete<l since I passed througli Oregon be- 
fore; it opened up one of the finest mountain regions 
(n any country, and one possessing peculiar and dis- 
tinctive grandeur of scenery. The route passes up 
the Willamette Valley, betw^een the coast range and 
the (cascade or Sierra Nevada range of mountains, 
vith two cross-cut ranges thrown across the great 
t^alley by more rec:ent volcanic action like the Te- 
hichipa range in Southern California, and on one of 
the cross-cut ranges is another celebrated railroad 
h)0}), e(|ual in engineering skill to Tehichipa. Be- 
tween these short ranges are twc> very beautiful 
valleys, the Rogue and C/hemath rivers, and so grand 
that the eye never grows wearv of watching the ever- 
t hanging picturevS. 

Mount Shasta and its immediate surroundings 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 239 

is the finest moinitain scenery that is accessible in 
North America. Its summit is cleft from north to 
south \)\ three immense chasms, the central one a 
thousand feet deep, which is sloAvly filling up with 
snow. At noon Avhen the sun shines down into the 
great chasms the scene is so dazzling that the eye 
can scarcely bear the intense, reflected light ; its base, 
like Mount Ranier, is clothed with pine forests, which 
intensifies the gloom from the pei*petual fields of 
snow. In all the region around Mount Shasta there 
have been fearful convulsions in the past; rivers 
have been turned out of their courses, lakes have been 
formed and old ones emptied. It looks as if the 
m(>untains had been made to skip ^^like rams, and 
the little hills like lambs." We passed out of the 
mountain ranges into the head of the Sacramento 
Valley, and came to a fountain of almost pure soda 
water. It issues out of the cavern by thousands of 
gallons hourly; the rock is considerably worn away, 
showing that it has been running for ages. The 
railroad company has constructe<:l a fine drinking 
fountain ; the trains stop and all t^ke a drink. Those 
who take the trip a second nrae provide tlicmselves 
with sugar, for that makes it perfect: ]u?t why no 
one knows. 

The whole Sacramento Valley is a marvel of 
rural Wauty. and where it has been improved, ])re- 



240 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

sente a luxuriance that fills the beholder ^vitli en- 
thusiastic delight, and yet the development is in its 
infancy. In a few years, when the orchards and vine- 
yards have grown, the whole \^alley ^viil be a won- 
der in productiveness. There will always be an abun- 
dance of water in that valley. 

My son met me in San Francisco as arranged, 
and the next morning we started for his home, ar- 
rived same day and had a hearty greeting from the 
family, especially from the little ones. They had 
planned a vacation in the mountains when I should 
get there, so in a day or two we set out for Lake 
Tahoe, and crossed over to a summer resort on the 
west side within two miles of the nearest snow field. 
It was a delightful place, with all the mountain climl)- 
ing that could be desired. My son immediately 
telegraphed to Portland, Oregon, for my nieces to 
come, and at the right time I crossed the lake to 
Tahoe City, there took hack and went to Trukee^ 
on main line of Central Pacific Railroad to inter- 
cept her so as to save the going around by Carson 
City. Everything went as smooth as clock work; 
she left the train and we returned over the romantic 
route up the Trukee river, which abounds in pictur- 
esque scenes, and could one have the history of the 
lumber men and pioneers, it would make an inter- 
eresting narrative. At Tahoe City we took a boat and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 241 

re-cross(Hl the lake to the rendezvons, where there was 
a happy reunion of the cousins. 

Then began a seides of tramps over the hills^ 
through immense forests of pine, cedai% redw^ood and 
other timber, hunting the beautiful snow^ plant which 
is found nowhere else, fishing on the lake, or taking 
a tour around the lake in a steamer, Adsiting some 
remarkable bays and inlets, where nature seems to 
have done its best to unite the romantic and the 
beautiful. The crowning wonder w^as a trip on foot 
of eleven miles to a new discovery called Rubicon 
Springs. The w^ay led through one of the most ter- 
ribly desolate mountains on the continent. Our first 
view was from a cliff two or three thousand feet 
high; below us lay a narrow- valley, through w-hich 
ran the Rubicon river, 5000 feet below the place 
where we stood. The valley and gorge ran north- 
west beyond the view; the opposite mountain range 
was naked granite rock, bald and desolate. Earth- 
quake power had shivered the whole range into frag- 
ments; as far as the glass could reach there was not 
a square acre of rock that had not be-en shattered, 
seamed and broken. In places whole cubic acres 
of rock had been hurled into the- valley, where they 
lay in fragments; great bowlders had been tossed 
{ibout like foot-balls. To the southeast the head 
of the great, gorge was closed by .lofty summits, cov- 



242 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ered with many square miles of perpetual snow fields, 
which, with rooky desolation, finished the picture, 
easier remembered than described. 

Within four years the way had been made to 
and down to the bottom of the valley; fii-st a pack 
horse trail, then a cart way had been opened, and 
a rude hotel built, the dooi*s and windows of which 
were carried to the valley on horses. At one point 
there were several mineral springs, among them a 
soda water spring like the great fountain at the head 
of the Sacramento river. High up near the snow 
fields is Lone Lake, covering several hundred acres; 
it is rather difiicult of access. One afternoon a trip 
was made to it, the ladies on horseback and the men 
afoot; though a long, tiresome climb, it rewarded 
all the labor, for it brought us up nearer to and on 
a level with the snow, which was refiected in the 
placid watei*s as distinctly as in a glass. All was sil- 
ent and peaceful ; the bright sunlight, the rarified 
air united to make it a deeply-interesting place. But 
little conscious life ever visited that spot, except a 
few wild fowl in their migrations. A few large pine 
trees stood in lone grandeur in a cove at the west end. 

Ten miles below the hotel is a place called Hell 
Hole, which is inaccessible to all except strong, ac- 
tive men, and they need to be brave and of good 
nerve. It is the winter quarters of rattlesnakes, and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 243 

th€ danger of eiiteniig tlie detip cove, together with 
the overpowering stench, is enough to deter most 
men. Two hardy huntei*s ventured in to collect rat- 
tles for t-ourists, but ere thev had killed forty they 
were overcome by the foul air and with difficjulty 
escaped from the horrible pit. 

The river abounded in tine mountain trout, and 
some of the party could not resist the temptation to 
fish, so we had plenty of fresh trout during our stay. 
The return was made in a hack drawn by four horses, 
and the scenes from many of the tui-ns were new reve- 
lations; and as we looked up to the overhanging cliffs 
and saw^ the foot path we had descended, we could 
hardly realize the fact; but everything was so exciting 
and new as we pas&ed over it that we forgot all 
danger, though I did remember sitting down on the 
loose stones and sliding several feet before halting 
against a large bowlder. The cartway itself was a 
inai-^^el, for it seemed impossible for a way to have 
been found down such cliffs, but the grade, though 
steep and circuitous, was practicable, but hard on 
horse and vehicle. We all enjoyed the coming back 
to the lake, for it w^^as as though w^e had been to a 
wonderful artificial show, so new and different from 
all past experience; it took some time to fix the picture 
and feel that it was natural and real. We voted 
unanimously that Rubicon Sprin^-s would become a 
famous resort in the near future. 



244 LIFE AND travels" 

At the end of ten days we retnriied to Carson 
City, and among the places visited was the prison 
yard for another look at the pre-histoi*ic footprints, 
but sad to relate, they had nearly all been destroyed 
by the increased work in quarrying the building 
stone. My favorite mountain peak still stood in sil- 
ent grandeur, looking down on the city, the clear 
mountain blue being sharply defined. 

Time was going on, the season advancing, and 
we had to turn homeward, for the progTam was not 
half completed; the Yellowstone Park was yet to 
be visited and the World's Fair at Chicago to be 
seen, a brother in Kansas called on, and other inci- 
dental intervenings. My son and his family accom- 
panied us to Reno, where we visited a niece who 
was then residing in that city. After a pleasant 
stop there, we fiually bid good-bye and started east- 
ward toward Ogden, in Utah; as we passed the Hum- 
boldt desert in the night, much of the heat and 
dust was avoided. When w© came into the Mor- 
mon settlements in Utah, it was a great relief to the 
eye to see beautiful PTeen fields, orchards and groves, 
and a striking contrast to the blistering sand. 

To economize time from Ogden, we ran down 
t-o Salt Lake City and si)ent a day in seeing it. We 
went to the temple, tabernacle, bee hive, grave of 
Brigham Young, and then out to Garfield Lake, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 245 

where we tested the density of the water as com- 
pared to the Dead Sea, and found it the denser of the 
two. We returned to Ogden, took the train on the 
Utah Northern Railroad for Beaver canyon, the point 
opposite the park, though ninety-five miles away, 
which proved to he a small, dirty, mean place; so 
the trip tc> the park on that line is to the ordinary 
tourist a swindle, but if one is posted in the history 
of the fur trade and early explorations, it is an in- 
teresting route. 

Starting from Beaver canyon in a very p(x>r hack, 
with inferior horses but a good, reliable driver, our 
route lay nearly east, the first half of the day over 
a wide plain, with mountains to the north and in 
front. As the day advanced the mountains loomed 
up dark and frowning, and interest increased; the 
whole region was almost unoccupied by people of 
any color — the Indian was gone and the whites had 
not yet come. The wolf went across the trail, the 
sage hens flew away in large flocks, the antelope 
could be seen afar, while the driver related exciting 
stories associated mth the various points. In the 
afternoon we entered the mountains through a gap, 
and came into the singularly beautiful Antelope 
valley; it lies between two ranges and extends through 
a gap on a line for fifteen miles, when it suddenly 
ends in Henry Lake meadow, which is south of the 

16 



246 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

lake and once a part of it. It was around tins lake that 
many of the stin-ing events of the fur trade transpired. 
Xear it Mr. Stuart, on his return from Astoria in 
1813 or '14, encountered the hostile Indians; on its 
eastern shore General Howard fought the last bat- 
tle with the independent, unsubdued tribe of Indians, 
the Xez Perces, and some refuge Sheshones, and there 
the last independent chief, Tyhee, lost his life when 
the last stand was made. 

We spent the night at the celebrated log cabin 
hotel, a rendezvous for hunters, amid dogs, goats and 
great numbers of prepared skins and mounted birds, 
which were to be taken to the park for sale; the only 
desirable thing was fresh mountain trout, caught 
out of the headwaters of the Snake river near by. 
The old Belgian landlord was erecting a fine hot-el 
in anticipation of coming events. Soon after leav- 
ing Henry Lake we entered the pass now called 
Tyhee, after the old chief; we went through the bat- 
tle ground, which was well chosen, just out of the 
range of the stockade. On one of the head streams 
of Snake river, at the summit of the pass, there is 
a fine spring that sends its waters to the Pacific, a 
hundred yards further we stood on the Continental 
Divide, and two lumdred yards l>eyond a spring 
sends its watei-s thi*ough Madison river to the Gulf 
of ]\rexico. This Avas <»n the northwest side of the 



OF ADDISON C(^FFIN. 247 

great central headwater rei>ion of nearly all our 
great rivers, as mentioned in a former chapter, and 
it was a triumph in life to reach that spot, nearly 
8000 feet above the sea. 

Onr nooning place tlie second day was on the 
south fork of Madison river, in a romantic house, 
which was lined and almost full of valuable skins, fur, 
mounted birds, deer and elk horns and rare fossils; 
it was kept by a singularly interesting bachelor hun- 
ter and cattleman. He was in middle life, and had 
left Pennsylvania and Ohio ^^^th a set-ret locked up 
in his heart, and had hid himself in that lone, wild 
region. While showing his trophies to my nieces, 
the poor fellow suifered the door to his inner life 
to open for a moment, and in that time I read his 
life history. From him I learned that the point 
where Mr. Stuart had lost his horses and then burned 
his baggage was about fifteen miles south, and he 
had been to the place. He was rejoiced to find one 
Avho knew of and was interested in that event, and 
by seeing into his inner life, I soon drew him out 
and found him very entertaining. As a relief to his 
lonely life he sometimes indulged in practical jokes 
on city tenderfeet who came there to hunt. I will 
relate one instance. Some very high-toned sjwrts- 
rnen came from New York and made arrangements 
to board with him; thev were hiehlv elated with 



248 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the outlook from seeing Kis store. The first morn- 
ing the J asked him where was a good place to hunt; 
he sent them south, on a range of naked hills. At 
night they came in tired and hungry, but had no 
game; next dav they extended their hunt further 
oft", but no game nor any sign of any. Then it b^ 
gan to dawn upon them that there was a trick, and 
made such a charge upon their host when they re- 
turned. He quietly informed them that they had 
only asked for a g(X>d place to hunt, l)ut did not ask 
for game, so he sent them where there was just good, 
plain huntir.ff, but if the^- wanted game they must 
go to another place. Thev were highly oft'ended and 
took their departure next morning, and uj) to date 
had not been heard from. 

We next passed over heavy timbered hills for 
several hours, then came to the foot of a low moun- 
tain which bounded the park on the west; the ascent 
was slow, for the horses were weary and the way was- 
steep, but we reached the top at the opj^ortune mo- 
ment, for the air was still and no smoke floating up 
the sides. Our first view of the park did not fill the 
measure of our anticipations, yet the scene was fine. 

Before us, and far to the right, several hun- 
dreds of columns of smoke and steam were rising 
from among the ro<3ks, trees and distant hills. In 
the naked valley many jets of steam were ascend- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 249 

ing, swaying in the setting sunlight, while the whole 
scene was surronnded by a background of grand pine 
forests and forest-covered mountains. In the fore- 
ground was Madison river, at the foot of the moun- 
tain, seemingly at our feet, a broad, rapid stream run- 
ning northward, and sending up from its surface a 
light, fleecy mist or cloud which marked its entire 
course throua^h the valley and off among the hills. 
To the southwest, a few miles away, smoke ascended 
as though it came from a lake of fire, and the as- 
cent was very rapid, with many whirling evolutions. 
Nearer the mountain to the south, a large column 
of steam rose high in the clear, rarified air, which 
marked the location of the Excelsior geyser, but the 
evening was closing in, so we descended into the 
wonder land, forded the river and reached Firehole 
Basin Hotel. On the way Ave saw and heard enough 
to prepare the mind for the startling and terrible, 
for as we trotted along the lime and gravel deposits 
we passed jets of steam, boiling pools, extinct gey- 
sers, with a constantly increasing heat, which seemed 
everywhere to come from the ground. 

Though tired and woni with our rough stag- 
ing, we were up early next morning, ready for an 
active day's Avork, but Ave AA-ere disappointed, for the 
whole valley and mountains were covered Avith a dense 
fog or mist that seemed to forelxxle a bad day, but 



250 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

at sunrise the fog lifted in white clouds and floated 
away, and soon everything shone in bright sunlight, 
with a distinctness seen only in high altitudes that 
approach the line of perpetual snow. We were tirst 
attracted by a roaring as of a mighty wind, and the 
rushing of many waters; the sound came from a hill 
to the south, which was being rapidly enveloped in 
white smoke or steam, with a central jet shooting 
high over all. Before we were conscious of it, we 
were nearly in a run making for the hill, nor did 
we slacken our pace when a man stepped out of the 
smoke and called, "Just in time, she's going to play," 
and play she did. Upon approaching the spot we 
found the "Fountain" geyser in a state of active 
eruption. It was a rough, irregular cavern, about 
ten feet in diameter, throwdng out floods of scald- 
ing water by violent, irregular explosions, from which 
clouds of smoke and steam ascended and fell in 
showers of mist for many yards around, or floated 
away in clouds. This violent eruption continued for 
about half an hour, then it slowly suljsided to a boil- 
ing, blubbei-ing po<)l, but every two hours tlie vio- 
lence is repeated. 

When our awe somewhat toned down, we looked 
around and found we were in the midst of a group 
of ax^tive, roaring geysers and scorching steam jets, 
coming from fissures of all sizes and shapes, making 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 251 

it dangerous to walk about while the steam and smoke 
hung near the earth. As we stood amazed and looked 
at the terrible evidence of hidden fire, we saw not 
very far away a singular column of smoke, differing 
from all others. Upon passing over a slight ridge 
we found a large pool of boiling, blubbering mud, 
or fluid lime, mixed with many colors, yellow pre- 
dominating. This is called the Paint Pot, and re- 
minds the farmer of a large kettle of apple butter 
Rearing the finish. The bureting of the blubbers 
throws great splotches of mud in the air and many 
yards around, blist-ering naked hands and spoiling 
fine clothes. 

From a knoll near by I counted o\^er 200 jets 
of steam and smoke in the basin, and all in active 
eruption, while on the hill we were fortunate in wit- 
nessing one of the grand concerts of explosions that 
happen at irregular periods. There was a simul- 
t*aneous eruption of a hundred or more; it sounded 
as though suppressed thunder shook the hill and filled 
the air, vast quantities of water, steam and smoke 
were vomited forth, and for a time darkened the air 
and hid the hills. To the uninitiated, it seemed as 
though the hour of doom and the eclipse of nature 
had come. After beholding this grand display, we 
were ready for any and all things, either terrible,- 
sublime or beautiful. 

From the fountain it is over a mile to Hell's Half' 



252 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Acre, ar Excelsior geyser, on the west side of the 
river; we found the place well named. It is the 
largest geyser in the world; it is a fearfnl crater of 
boiling water, nearly 200 feet across, and of unknown 
depth; a A'ast cloud of steam shoots to the skies, as 
if sent from the blast of a furnace. It is seldom 
that any one can look into the fearful gulf, so in- 
tense is the heat and blinding the smoke; the water 
is thrown about in ffreat waves with such violence 
that it sounds like an angry sea dashing on a rocky 
coast. Once in three years it is in active eruption, 
and discharges a river of scalding wat^r every twenty- 
four hours for many weeks. During these eruptions 
the deep thunder of the explosion is heard many miles 
away, and the adjacent hills tremble, while Madison 
river is turned into a rushing torrent of hot water; 
for many miles it is too hot for fish or reptiles, and 
the wild fowls give it a mde margin. 

Less than 200 feet westward from this geyser is 
Sunset Lake, a broad pool of crystal water nearly 
motionless, yet scalding hot. Its walls and irregular 
sides are incrusted by a sedimentary deposit that re- 
flects the sunlight far more beautifully than the most 
brilliant sunset cloud ever seen by human eye; any 
wave-like motion sends up a thousand flashes of daz- 
zling light, and this is intensified when seen at dif- 
ferent angles, (»r flashed up from deep chambers far 
below. 



OF APDISON COFFIN. 253 

Near by is anotlier pool called Emerald Lake,, 
which rivals the former. Its incrustations throw 
back a brilliant, emerald light, far more lovely than 
the most vivid imagination can picture. The im- 
pression made cm our minds was almost bewildering; 
the scene was so different from any we had ever be- 
held that we turned away with feelings almost op- 
pressive, for it is doubtful whether there is another 
place where there is so much of the terrible and the 
sublimely beautiful in such proximity and strange 
contrast. 

We re-crossed the river with the feeling that we 
had seen the gi-eatest of wonders and all else would 
be tame and uninteresting. But it was not so; be- 
fore we had gone a mile on the way to the upper 
geyser basin, we saw new features at every turn. 
There were great boiling pools, spouting fountainSy 
screaming steam jets, with low rumbling sounds be- 
neath OTir feet, throbs and pulsations among the rocks 
and pines, with hollow booming from beyond the 
river and clc^uds of steam rising behind the hills and 
up the sides of the mountain. Sometimes we passed 
pools of boiling water, clear as crystal, Avith scarcely 
any vapor rising from the surface, while near by were 
fissures emitting a colorless, poisonous fume, wdth a 
jarring deafening screech. At one place we passed 
a dark chasm, apparently an extinct geyser, and 



254 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

would have iikevl to peer into its black tlir'oat. On 
the return trip it was a raging 'geyser, throwing scald- 
ing water high into the air. Xear a bridge over the 
i-iver, in the bed of the stream, was a magnificent 
geyser, throwing water ninety feet high; when we 
came' back the river was flowine- quietly onward as 
though no fire raged below. There was not a space 
of a hundred yaixis between Fire Hole and upper 
geyser basin but indicated activity in the fire below. 
As we entered the open space of the upper basin, 
another phase of interest met our gaze. First, we 
were surprised to see so many columns of every size 
and color; then it seemed th^at far and near there 
was a tremulous, rumbling sound coming from we 
knew not where, wliile under our feet there was a 
constant jar, with sudden jolts as if a cog were broken 
in the vast machine which furnished the motive 
power below. A turn in the road brought us in 
sight of the hotel, and just beyond Old Faithful was 
roaring in grand magnificence, throwing a colurmi 
of hot water a hundred feet high, from which clouds 
of mist floated oft' to the mountain. Old Faithful 
is the most popular geyser in the park, but not the 
most wonderful. It is active at regular intervals of 
fifty-five to sixty minutes; it continues in eruption 
from five to seven minutes, then sul>sides to almost 
silence, and thus it goes on continually night and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN, 



255 



day. Ite ea^y accessibility and regularity has made 
it popular; the lazy, the lame, the old and infirm 
can see it without effort. From the hill formed by 
the sediment around it, other columns of steam, larger 
in volume and more rapid in ascent, can be seen. 
Many of those columns of steam come from craters 
formerly grand and terri])le, but some of them are 
difficult of access, and the average tourist never sees 
them. We visited several of the isolated ones, and 
were amply repaid for the toil. 

Across the river, north of Old Faithful, there 
was a hill that seemed to be enveloped in smoke all 
the time, with sounds of constant eruptions of no 
small power, but not one of the fifty tourists present 
could tell,or seemed to care, what was over there. 
They came to see Old Faithful, and had thought for 
nothing else; some of them were too lazy to walk 
300 yaixls from the hotel to get a close view, and to 
go a half mile over rocks and amid smoke seemed 
too horiible to think of . We went over the river on 
a narrow foot-bridge, and found ourselves in the midst 
of an area of nearly forty acres in extent, almost 
covered with active geysers, fire holes, steam vents, 
roaring crevices and gaping fissures, making up a 
scene approaching the fearful; the hill seemed to be 
in a st^te of constant vibration. There were one 
hundred craters and jets in . active eruption all the 



256 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

time; twenty geysers threw cohimns of water four 
to six feet in diameter, twenty to thirty feet high, every 
few minutes, varied at times by concerted activity 
that shook the entire hill. The most noted was Old 
Lion, which is active at short intervals, with a loud, 
bellowing roar, ending in a growl similar to an irri- 
tated lion. Near by is the Lioness and two Cubs, also 
the Sponge, so called from the peculiar deposit re- 
sembling the sponge. A steam jet is named the 
Model from its regular, rasping whistle like that of 
a lo<"omotive. Many jets are continuous, others are 
intermittent, but the latter are more harsh and vio- 
lent; (juite a number have jar-shaped craters stand- 
ing up three to six feet high, so symmetrical in form 
that they seem to have been fastened by art. In 
the northeast corner is a succession of clear pools of 
boiling water, but though most of them are scald- 
ing hot, thev are as smooth as a mirror. From far 
below it all there comes a singular, hollow, drum-like, 
jarring sound, that caunot be descril>ed by words. 

We spent twr^ hours in exploring this interest- 
ing }>lace before the intense heat and noxious fumes 
compelled us to return. No one who visits the park 
can afford to miss that wonderful spot; without it 
knowledge of the wonderland is incomplete, though 
it takes labor and is somewhat dangerous. There 
are more attractive jtlaces off the fashionable routes 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 257 

than on them, and they pay for all the time and 
toil, beside to the young and sanguine they are grand 
and romantic. 

On the return trip from the upper basin we 
turned aside from the popular route to see what lay 
in the hills to the westward, and were abundantly 
rewarded for our tramj) over stream, marsh and hills; 
there was much that is not mentioned in the guide 
book that should be placed first. The DeviFs Punch 
Bowl is a hot-water geyser on a liill fifty feet high, 
f onned of the deposit of ages. It is six feet in diame- 
ter, and little inferior to Old Faithful, and far more 
dark and repulsive. Farther up on a hillside was 
a geyser which has filled six acres of the valley several 
feet deep with lime and black sand deposit. We 
pushed on through the thick brush, low, wet land, 
acmss naked lime deposits, past a group of boiling 
pools, on up to near the foot of the mountain, where 
we found the most beautiful thing of the kind . on 
the earth. It was a small, sunset, emerald lake, with 
its raised walls incrusted with deposits that reflected 
back the sunlight in all the colors of the rainbow, 
and threw a luminous radiance up into the air as 
though it was phosphorescent. like some other 
pools, it was still and sparkling though very hot, but 
its dazzling beauty was not only startling, but so 
sublime that it was difficult to realize at fii-st sight that 



258 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

we were l(X)king at a thing of earth and not enjoy- 
ing a beautifnl dream. It wa^'^ so far above and be- 
yond our highest imagination that it was intensely 
fascinating. When at last we turned to leave we 
could only express our impressions by exclaiming, 
^'To-o beautiful for earth," and it will ever occupy 
a place in memory as one of the most magnificent 
of earthly gems. 

All over that portion of the park and outly- 
ing country, hid away among the pine forests, in 
inaccessible ravines, are geysers and fire holes yet un- 
seen by the tourist, and possibly by any living man, 
and they may present as wT)nderful phenomenon as 
anything now known. We returned to Fire Hole 
Basin with a new chapter added to our lives; with a 
multitude of new ideas and man^- exploded theories. 
Next morning we started for Xorris basin, or "Col- 
ter's Hell," twenty-one miles away. The route was 
through splendid pine foi'ests, over gentle, rolling 
hills and low mountains, through upland meadows 
and peaks, along a fine pike road constructed by the 
government engineers. 

We passed (Til)l)on Kiver canyon, Avhich in any 
other place would be a first-class wonder; then came 
Gibbon falls, Virginia rapids, and up Nez Perces 
river, where the low mountains are all covered with 
unbroken forests of pines untouched by fire. It is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 259 

SO deep and dark tliat it seemed like twilight at ti(x>ii- 
dav, and it gave ndicf to tlie excitement after see- 
ing the fearfnl tilings at Fire Hole and upper Geyser 
basin. 

There was not a mile of the journey but had 
some boiling fountain by the roadside, or if not seen 
it could be heard in the solitude of the great for- 
est. Even at the very bottom of Gibbon canyon 
there were iets of steam hissing and whistling, and 
one great boiling cauldron furnished a stopping place 
to contrast the extras that make up the scene. When 
we emerged from the hills through the canyon, we 
came, into a wide meadow called Elk Park, and as 
we looked back we saw^ a huge mud geyser sending 
up its cloud of dark smoke 1000 feet above us, while 
oif to the right, down in the meadow, was another 
cauldron in constant eruption, discharging mud and 
water. 

TvTotwithstanding all we had seen before, when 
we arrived at Norris basin we had to readjust all 
our previous impressions of the fearful and terrible, 
for before us was a new departure in all that relat^es 
to a land of fire and the regions below. In manv 
ways, Norris basin is the most interesting point of 
the Park. The basin, or valley, is several square 
miles in extent, and is now, and has been, the center 
of the original lake of fire of which Bad Lands was 



260 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

a part, as also Steamboat Hill, 800 miles distant. 
Ages ago the great lake began crusting over; in the 
Bad Lands it was suddenly put out and the fearful con- 
^ailsions that followed threw up the mountains and 
formed Snake River plains. In tim€ it all crusted 
over excepting six to ten acres, which is now called 
''Calder's Hell/' named by Washington Irving in 
1836. The last open lake was gTadually covered, 
but through this crust huge craters were the outlets 
for the escaping lava, which in time built up great 
cones around them two to five hundred feet high; 
then they slowly became extinct, and now make up 
the distinctive character of the valley. Then there 
are hundreds of geysers, fireholes and craters still 
active, throwing up hot mud, lime deposit, streams 
of hot water, vapor and steam. There are a few 
acres of the lake that have recently crusted over wdth 
a thin layer of lava, too thin to bear a man, and it 
was full of fissures and rents, and the whole area 
seems to be in constant agitation, as though there 
was a great mass of melted matter rolling and swell- 
ing below; the sulphurous fumes that rise from the 
surface are suffocating and poisoning. When there 
is extra activity among the surrounding geysers, all 
<yf ^^Colter's Hell" seems to be swayed to and fro by 
convulsions from below, and hot water will spout in 
.such a multitude of jets that the whole surface is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 261 

so(m (•(►verfnl witli water, steam and smoke, from 
which we recoiled in teiTor; the verv hills shook and 
the terrible held sway over the scene until most minds 
will be fully satisfied. To see all this takes time, pa- 
tience and nerve; these frightful manifestations do 
not follow any apparent or regular order of events, 
but are wholly irregiilar, though of frequent occur- 
rence. The phenomena of this region is distinctive; 
on a hill near the basin is a steam crater called ^^Old 
Growler," which sends up a column of steam one 
hundred feet hig'h with a sound like the escape valve 
of a locomotive, but fifty times more rasping to the 
ear. The steam is full of lime held in suspension, 
which falls like fine flour on the rocks and bushes 
for manv yards around, and it can be gathered in the 
hand like snow and is pure lime when cool and 
pressed into balls. Rainbow colors surround the 
column of steam, varyine; with the wind into a thous- 
and forms. A hundred yards or more west of the 
basin is the "Minute Geyser," which throws a column 
of water three feet in diameter thirty feet high every 
minute, and never misses day or night. Xear Old 
Growler is a basin of w^ater thirty feet in diameter, 
boiling furiously, while further cm are two mud pools 
in constant eruption, one jet black and the other white 
as snow. Over a hill three hundred yards away, about 
three years before our visit, an explosion took place 
17 



262 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and great masses of rock and bowlders were hurled 
in every direction, prostrating trees and breaking 
things to pieces for many yards around, thus form- 
ing an active geyser, the only one known to be of 
recent origin. The crater is about seven feet in 
diameter, and is active every seven minutes, with a 
loud roar, throwing the water thirty to forty feet high 
and forming quite a steam. Yet within a circuit 
of one hundred yards there are twenty other aL'tive 
craters or boiling pools that seemingly might have 
given ample vent without explosion and this addition. 
To the south and southwest, within the radius of a 
mile, are over two hundred active craters and fissures 
in the earth, and as we climbed over the rough rocL^ 
and extinct craters, we found something new on every 
side; toilsome as it was, we felt repaid after we had 
returned from the strange scenes among the hills. 
On the east of the l>asin the surface is bare and so 
hot that we could not stand walking over it for more 
than half an hour, and the poisonous fumes gave us 
headaches of a peculiar character that warned us to 
leave the spot. While standing on a hill near Old 
Growler I counted two hundred columns of smoke 
to the northwai*d, and on the other side of the valley. 
There were different colors in the great clouds of 
smoke that floated away, yet the colored clouds seemed 
to have no affinity for each other, but floated away in 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 263 

separate masses, the blue and yellow especially seemed 
to repel instead of mingling together. It is the same 
with the blue and colorless vapors as they come from 
the earth; though the wind drives the blue directly 
across the colorless vapors, yet it will not mingle or 
cross, but ascends or turns aside, as from a solid wall. 
Much of the basin is covered with a white deposit of 
lime and sand, too hot for vegetation ; even on some of 
the hills it is too hot for the pine trees to grow and for 
people to stand long in one place, but everywhere 
among the old, disintegrating craters, the pine tree 
persistently makes encroachments on fields of former 
desolation. 

When we visited the basin there were probably 
forty other tourists- present all or part of the time. 
It was amusing to watch their actions and hear their 
comments; not more than one in ten left the high- 
way, many did not leave the stages, none were more 
thaii one hundred yards from the road in any direc- 
tion, many were taking copious notes in diaries, and 
all seemed to go away happy in the thoiight tliat they 
had seen all there w^as to be seen at Xorris Basin. 
Unfortunately, many of the guide books are made 
up from such knowledge, while the reallv interest- 
ing, the tnily wonderful are not mentioned, for they 
have not been seen by the writers. 

We next journeyed eleven miles through as 



264 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

grand forests and natural scenery as any we had 
passed throngh ; this bronght us to the crowning won- 
der of the park, if not the worhl, the Yellow^stone 
Canyon, which, like Xorris Basin, caused another 
re-adjustment of ideas, for it has characteristics pe- 
culiar to itself, and for which we have no standard of 
comparison. At the time the Bad LandvS were 
formed, a vast mass of semi-fluid matter was sud- 
denly cooled and throwai into a low range of moun- 
tains; chemical action was suddenly aiTested among 
its elements; the result was all the colors of the mass 
became fixed, and the colors of the rainbow were 
strangely and wonderfully commingled. The for- 
mation is about as solid as average chalk. This moun- 
tain range at one time, by some unknown means, has 
been cleft from top to base, making a canyon or gorge 
from three to four thousand feet deep, serpentine and 
irregular in its course. Through this gorge the Yel- 
lowstone river flows, entering from the south, flrst 
by a succession of steep rapids called upper falls, then 
a short distance below it plunges dowm a perpendic- 
ular fall of three hundred feet into a chasm that 
anywhere else would be fearfully grand; then it rushes 
wildly onward over a succession of roaring rapids 
until the gorge is passed. 

All this magnificence faded into nothingness 
when we stO(^^)d on Observation and Inspiration Points, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 265 

dizzy crags that project from the west wall far out 
over the fearful abyss, and found oui*selves sur- 
rounded by a thousand rainbow colors, reflected from 
adjacent cliffs, overhanging rocks, yawning gulfs, and 
broad streams of many-colored sands disintegrating 
and descending into the river, all sending back a con- 
stantly-changing light as the varying clouds floated 
above, as the morning sunlight changed to noonday, 
and then to evening-tide, fllling the vast canyon with 
a glow of radiant, lambent glory which no words can 
describe. Any one with the least bit of ideal imagin- 
ation, ^vith any love of the sublime and mai-velous, 
will stand with astonishment when this bewildering 
scene of beauty bursts on his sight. 

There are other points from which this charm- 
ing scene can be enjoyed, but they have to be seen 
to be understood. There is no other place on earth 
where there is so much of the truly beautiful to be 
seen in such blending of harmonious colors, and its 
inspiring sublimitv is incomparable. There were 
some largo paintings at the hotel, made by a master 
hand, but they were far short of the real scene, for 
it is impossible for an artist to reproduce these won- 
ders or even a sunset cloud. 

After seeing the beautiful canyon, other \dew9 
began to lose their interest, and we found ourselves 
half dreaming about some imagined fairy land, where 



266 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

we wanted to dwell amcmg scenes of rainbow beauty; 
bnt there are few places that require more activity 
of eye, ear, memory and mind than Yellowstone 
Park. There we come in contact with the operation 
of forces; new, stubborn facts confront us under new 
conditions. Many pet theories of the scientists are 
wholly at fault; they ^^dll not work; cross-currents 
of facts through all that region come and spoil all 
our ideals. We have to call into use new^ faculties, 
and use our old ones in new ways, and then find our- 
selves at sea. The theory of the drift, the great ice 
sheet that once covered the noithland, the upheavals 
and submergence, all, all becomes mixed and per- 
plexing. AVe cannot understand the reason why, so 
we leave it. There is one thing of which we are 
sure — we have a ^^icture graven on memory that will 
not fade. 

In parting from thfs wonderful region, after 
crossing it in five places and traveling two hundred 
miles north and south through it, I can say that 
everywhere I saw evidence of forces not described 
nor accounted for in the books, evidently not seen 
nor understood by the scientists. The pet theory of 
evolution will not work from a practical standpoint. 
There is evidently an active, all per\^ading force not 
yet understcKKl. 

We returned bv the same route to Beaver Can- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 267 

yon, with no new discoveries. We met an old Rus- 
sian nobleman and wife at our Bachelor Hotel; the 
wife could talk American, and was very interesting. 
They had crossed Europe, through Siberia to the 
mouth of the Amoor river, and there took a steamer 
by wa}' of San Francisco and were going home by 
way of Xew York and London. At the Log Cabin 
Hotel an incident took place that is worth recording. 
Two St. Bernard dogs, male and female, had been 
missing a day and a night; all were anxious for their 
safety. The next morning they returned in sad 
plight, the male's head, especially his mouth and nose, 
stuck full of porcupine quills; the other one did 
not have ouite so many sticking to her. The intel- 
ligent fellow went to his master and held up his head 
and whined in a way that was understood. The man 
sat down and carefully pulled them all out, and 
though his head was much swollen he never winced, 
but seemed thankful and grateful : the other one came 
up for the same favor. There were three hundred 
quills sticking to them. They had found a den of 
porcupines, dug them out and destroyed them before 
giving it up. They had done so before; when com- 
plimented they understood and wagged their satisfac- 
tion. These two dogs had actually killed several 
black bears, for they knew how to get the advantage; 
besides these two larae ones, there seemed to be about 



268 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

a dozen otiier dogs mixed up promiscuously witli the 
children. 

We reached the railroad in time to take the 
evening train, and ran down to Idaho Falls and stopped 
off with J. A. Clark, a former neighbor and kins- 
man, where we had a glad reunion. The next day 
he, his wife and son drove us over the same gTOund 
I had walked over some years before. It was mar- 
velous what a change had come; thousands of acres 
were in cultivation, twenty miles of a great in-iga- 
tion canal was completed; ground that was in sage 
brush when I first saw it had thirty-six bushels of 
wheat per acre on it, and other crops in like propor- 
tion. Beautiful homes were in sight on every side, 
and it was truly a magic transformation ; yet improve- 
ment had just begun. The capacity of the canal 
when finished was 200,000 acres, and the land was 
there awaiting its coming. Such cases as this could 
be multiplied many times over, but it will ser^^e to 
show what can be done, and where the center of 
wealth and power will soon l)e. 

We parted from our friends and relatives and 
made a continuous run via DenA^er to Lawrence, Kan., 
where we stopped a few days. Then my niece went 
on to meet her sister and friends from Carolina at 
the World's Fair, Chicago, while I went south to see 
my brother Alfred, now quite infirm, spent some time 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



269 



with liiiii, then returned to Lawrence and went out 
twelve miles to Hesper to see many old friends, 
neighbors and relatives, then on to Chicago, where 
I found my niece had started homeward. She stopped 
at Indianapolis, Ind., and then went to her kome in 
Xortli Carolina, greatly improved in health, and I 
arrived at my home once more, safe and well. 

I promised my daughter that I would return 
in time to go with her and a company of neighbors 
to the World's Fair before it closed. So we- aiTanged 
the date and the company, and spent several days 
amid that grand exhibit of human achievement. To 
me it was less interesting than to my neighbors, for 
in my travels I had seen so much of it in other places, 
though I proved to be quite a good interpreter of 
where the things came from. My chief interest was 
the people. There was an op])ortunitv to study hu- 
manity collectively, and I useil it persistently, and 
to the further confinnation of the reasonableness of 
the Anglo-Israel theory.' It is not necessary for me 
to describe any part of the World's Fair. It has been 
done by so many and has so effectively passed into 
histoiy that all know the essentials respecting it. 

In a short time after returning from Chicago I 
arranged to spend the winter at Guilford College once 
more, and accordingly went down there in December 
and remained until April, 1 SlU. I had spent an active. 



270 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

busv, thinking, writinif season, had written many 
letters to friends and for pnhlication, and in addition 
had to do much talking at all tiie stopping places, 
t^lks on home and f(»reign travel, horticulture, agri- 
culture, women's rights, temperance and children's 
stories. I was also much interested in the success 
of the W. C. T. U. Industrial Home for girls at Had- 
ley, Indiana, which was in an embarrassed condition 
for a time. I took no part in the violent political 
contests that were agitating- the state, though mv heart, 
and sympathy were with every temperance movement 
that was based on total prohibition. 



* 



CHAPTER NINE, 



Trip to Europe — Storm at Sea — Landing at Liver- 
pool — Change of Program — Start for Egypt and 
Pass Through France and Italy — Voyage to 
Egypt, Cairo and the Pyramids — Journey to Port 
Said---I^nding at Jaffa and Arriving at Jerusalem 
— Scenes in Palestine — Journey to Baalbeck and 
Damascus — Stop at Brumana on Mt. Lebanon — 
Cruise Aniong the Islands — -Athens, Greece, and 
Its Ruins — Voyage to Constantinople — The Scenes 
in the City — Journey Across Europe Back to Lon- 
don — Safe Arrival and Finding Our Friends. 

When I turned away from my mother's grave 
at the old burial ground at New Garden, North Car- 
olina, in NovemV)er, 1891, I felt that my life work 
was done, that the obligation was filled, and for a 
time a sense of utter desolation oveq^owered me, and 
the future was closed, with no light beyond, so far 
as work or an object in life was conc-emed; but that 
night, as if by inspiration, the idea of foreign travel 
came t(' me, and the unemng voice, a? in the past, 

(271) 



272 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

said: "Go, and thou slialt return in peace." From 
that hour I }>egan arranging to cross the ocean. I 
returned home for a few weeks, and then came back 
to Guilford College to spend the winter, intending 
after a short stay at home to go to Europe in the 
spring or early summer, but during the winter Mary 
C. Woody and her companion, Lorena Reynolds, de- 
cided to go to England on a religious mission. They 
planned to start in February, 1892, and requested me 
to go with them instead of later on, and this I agreed 
to do and wrote home accordingly. A few days be- 
fore starting my friend, John Van Lindley, one of 
the principal nursery men of the South, and who 
lived near the college, unexpectedly, even to him- 
self, concluded to go with me on my long trip at 
least for a nine months' stay, then he would come 
home without me if I was not ready. 

The program was to visit Egypt, Palestine, feyria, 
Asia Minor, and all the nations of Europe. Few 
thought it could be done in less than a year, hence 
J. Van Lindley limited himself to nine months. He 
was needing a vacation and anxious to add to his 
store of knowledge in his line of business. The 
steamer was to sail Febiaiary 13th, from Xew York. 
John Van Lindley and I left Greensboro, X. C, the 
9th, went by way of Washington, secured passports, 
and then on to New York to obtain letters of credit. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 273 

On the evening of Febrnarv liitli M. (/. Woody 
and companion came, and the next moniing we sailed 
ont ()f the hay, and were on onr way to the new 
world. We were on the Umbria, of the Cunard line, 
one of the largest steamers afloat, and to landsmen 
the snrronndings were all new and decidedly excit- 
ing and sensational. My traveling companion en- 
joyed it to the fnll. For two days the weather was 
fine and the prospect very good for a qnick voyage, 
but on the third day we met a gale from the east 
that suddenly changed the whole scene. The ma- 
jority of the pa'ssengei"s had an interesting experience 
with seasickness; my lady companions were troubled 
with it for some days, but J. Van Lindley escaped 
almost entirely during the whole crossing. The 
tables that were filled at first were nearly empty for 
two days; then the pale faces began to assemble, but 
they were quite mincing about eating. The storm 
increased in violence as we proceeded, and became 
about first-class. The last two days of the voyage 
it was so violent that neither mail nor passengers could 
be landed at Queenstown: all were taken on to Liver- 
pool. 

AVhen off the west coast of Ireland a small ship 
w^as sighted with signals of distress flying. The steamer 
bore down U> the shij) an<l four men w^ere seen cling- 
ing to the rigging, but tlie ship rolled so heavily 



274 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

that it seemed ready to go down at an^ moment. The 
captain of the steamer called for volunteers to at- 
tem])t a rescue ; the stonn was so severe and the danger 
so great that he would not order anv one to go. One 
brave fellow stepped out, saving he would steer a boat 
if he could have a crew; immediately eight more he- 
roic men offered to go. After much difficulty and 
danger a boat was launched and pulled away. To me 
it looked like not only a hopeless effort, but a needless 
sacrifice of life, for I was sure all would be lost, but at 
the end of an hour's hard work they reached the ship, 
and rescued the crew, who had given up hope. The 
return to the steamer was finally accomplished, and 
the almost helpless crew lifted out of the boat; these 
brave seamen, white in the face from exhaustion, stag- 
gered when they reached the deck, and had to l>e sup- 
ported, but the light of determined . courage was still 
in their eyes. An involuntary shout of joy and con- 
gratulation went up from hundreds of spectators. 
There is always some leader who comes to the front in 
an emergency, and so it was now ; a noble-hearted man 
went around with his hat and was eloquent in praise 
and appeal. Over £80 (English money) was collected; 
then, when the exhausted men had somewhat recov- 
ered, they were called and astonished by £20 being 
given to the boat steerer as an acknowledgement of his 
courageous act, £10 to the captain of the ship as a re- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 275 

ward for his skill in saving his men, the remainder 
was divided equally between the rescuers and the res- 
cued, and another glad shout arose above the rage of 
the stonn. All concerned in this deed were English- 
men, and from mv heart I thaid<;ed the Lord for such 
a race of men. 

When we landed at Liverpool we found the 
weather very cool and foggy. There had been (j^uite a 
snow fall, which extended far inland, making the sit- 
uation unsafe for my health, so the program was 
changed; instead of remaining some time in England, 
we resolved to go to a warmer climate. Our lady 
friends parted with us and joined some of their English 
friends, whom they had met in America. After a few 
days we went on to London and bought tickets for 
Cairo, Egypt. We made a shoTt stay in London. We 
went to Paris, spent a day or so, then on to Rome by 
way of Lyons and through the Mt. Cenis tunnel. We 
remained a few days in Rome, saw the m6st noted 
places and older ruins, fragments of 2500 years ago. 
We hurried to Xaples, expecting to meet the steamer 
from England, l)ut it was three days late; this time we 
spent in looking at the beautiful side first, then at the 
dark, revolting side. We resolved to climb one of the 
old Roman rock flights of stone steps to the top of the 
hill a thousand feet high. We did not then, nor shall 
we ever regret doing it, but we do not again want to 



276 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

see the liorrid sight of human degradation, filth and 
slum that we encountered in passing the rock cham- 
bers. From the highest point of the old ruined castle 
we surveyed the beautiful surroundings of the cele- 
brated bav, had a good view of Vesuvius and the hills 
beyond, but after seeing so many of our own grand 
views combining city, water, ocean, plain and moun- 
tain, I failed to see wdiy any one should think of say- 
ing, "See Xaples and then die." If Americans wish 
to see Xaples as it is, I would say ride through its long, 
beautiful streets at fashionable: hours, visit its stately 
palaces and churches; then go off into its suburbs and 
back streets, climb one flifi^ht of stone steps, spend half 
a night on its streets, with its commingling throng' of 
humanity, and then you will know what Xaples is. 
There are many interesting ruins in and around the 
eity ; to the historian there is much of interest, for dur- 
ing the palmy days of Roman grandeur, Xaples was 
one of the chief resorts for possessors of wealth and 
pride. 

We were glad when the steamer came and we 
aboard and in our cpiarters. As it was over due it did 
not stop long, and we were soon out on the blue watere 
of the Mediten*anean. AVe passed the coast line with 
its green fields, \'ineyards and orchards covering the 
hills, with many white villages partly hidden away 
among the hills. Sometimes we could see with our 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 277 

glasses the people on the shore, and the goats and cat- 
tle among the rocks. We missed one historic point, 
the Strait of Messina and the shores of Sicily. It was 
night while we were passing, but the lights on the hilLs 
on either side of the strait showed that life abounded, 
and the numerous sailboats indicated life and activity. 
Though the shores were invisible I realized that we 
were passing through historic waters, and near his- 
toric shores with which a part of the world's history 
was closelv connected, and so I spent the larger por- 
tion of the night in thought and calling up the history 
of the past. Without previous arrangement we met 
several of our Umbria fellow passengei's on the steam- 
er who, like ourselves, were going to warmer countries. 
Among them was a Miss Havens, of Chicago, a mis- 
sionary to China. She had been twelve years in China 
and had been home ^-isiting her brother and sisters, 
and was now returning to her mission. We foi*med 
her acquaintance and she requested the pri^dlege of 
making the third one of our party while in Egypt and 
Palestine. She was a lady of superior mind and scien- 
tific attainments amd well posted, had traveled on foot 
two days on top of the great Chinese wall, and she 
gave us a vivid description of it. 

We landed in Alexandria March 4, IS 1)2, and 
suddenlv stepped out of western civilization into semi- 
barbarism. It seemed like going into a new world. 

18 



278 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

We were siirrouiided by a diffeiT:'nt race of people, 
speaking what was to us a new language, dressed in 
strange costumes, with novel habits and impulses; all 
seemed to be pushing, imshing, shouting and gesticu- 
lating in a frantic manner, which for a time was quite 
bewildering, but by going slowly and acting in a more 
composed manner than we felt, we soon mastered the 
situation and were driven by an English-speaking 
driveir to an English hotel, where we had time to adapt 
our thoiights to the abiiipt introduction into Eastern 
life. 

Then we took a three hours' drive through, and 
around the citv. We went to the remains of the old 
wall of the days of Alexander, and to other old ruins; 
to the beautiful gardens along the great canal, to the 
old tombs, through the long streets occupied by hun- 
dreds of shops and bazaars, and through the open, 
noisy market places. Here we first met the huge, 
ugly, repulsive-looking camel, with its enormous load, 
with the ever-present little donkey and celebrated his- 
toric, but not very picturesque-looking driver. The 
strange mixture of contrasting nationalities was in- 
teresting and stTiking. There were representatives 
from all European countries, and all Eastern nations 
excepting China; they made a perfect babel of 
tongues as they talked, shouted and yelled, making an 
unj)leasant impression on our untrained ears; but we 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 279 

were tolerably apt scholars, aiul inacle good progress, 
even ^lie first day, in our lessons, not in learning lan- 
guage, but in adjusting oiu'selves to tbe new life. 

AYe started by rail for Cairo; soon passed tlie 
marshes and were out into the great valley of the iJ^ile. 
It was a complete sui*prise; it far surpassed in beauty 
my highest ideals, rose-colored as some of them were. 
We were fortunate in the time of our visit. The 
weather was that of early June in our country; the 
wheat was in full head, barley just heading, sugar cane 
ripe and being cut, vegetables in all stages of growth. 
Hundreds of people were out in the fields at work, 
with camels and donkeys nearly as abundant as people, 
all loaded with fresh-cut clover, vegeta])les, sugar cane 
and other products on their way to market; w^hile on 
the canal there were many sail and rowboats loaded 
with the fiiiits of the rich soil, all presenting a charm- 
ing picture of Egyptian life as it was in the days of 
Moses. In places we were reminded of some of the 
most beautiful prairie scenes in the northwest of our 
country, with the addition of magnificent groves of 
the stately palm trees. In fact, it is hard to exaggerate 
w^hen speaking of the Xile vallev when seen under 
favorable circumstances. 

Next morning, after our arrival in Cairo, we 
startet:! earb' for the creat pvi^amid. Nine out of ten 
Americans care nothing for the city until they stand 



280 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

on the -gTeat pyramid and see the sphinx. We drove 
along a beautiful avenue on the bank of the l^ile, then 
crossed the river on a massive iron bridge, along 
another broad avenue of acacia trees, six miles to the 
west of the valley. At first sight there is a feeling of 
disappointment. It looks low and squatty, but as we 
approached its huge proportions began to come up 
against the blue sky and our disappointment turned to 
awe and delight. When we arrived at the base, my 
friends thought it unsafe for me to attempt the aseent. 
Miss Havens was earnest, though very kind in her per- 
suarling. Even the old Arab sheik thought it impru- 
dent and shook his head dubiously, but they knew 
nothing of my mountain climbing. We started vnt\\ 
two Arabs a piece to ''boost. " Miss Havens kept close 
to me in her anxiety for my safety. As is the custom, 
Ave halted to rest about every hundred feet. At the 
first halt Miss Havens asked how I was standing it. 
At the second stop I inquired after Miss Havens. 
John Van Lindley was behind at third. I waited for 
Miss Havens to get well winded, and then started for 
the top. When we were thirty feet from the summit 
Miss Havens said softly to her boosters, ''Hurrv^ up, I 
cannot bear the idea of an old man getting there first, 
after saying what I did," but my attendants overheard 
it, and they began to boost with a will, and we were 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 281 

almost earned up, Miss Havens arriving two steps 
ahead, but very tired, while I was not even weary. 
John Van Lindlev was fifty feet behind, but came up 
all right. My stock went above par among the Arabs. 

The scene from the top well repaid all the toil of 
climbing aside from the historical associations. But 
it has been described by tourists and in school books 
so often, that a brief outline is all that I shall attempt, 
though I found afterwards that I saw things which 
few mention, if they ever see them. The stones and 
plaster casing of the pyramids and all the old ruins 
have never been washed by rain, or moistened by dew ; 
the constant exposure to blazing sunlight for unknown 
centuries gives them a peculiar look, not seen any- 
where else, and it is the same with wood, metal and all 
artificial work; even the people bear marks of heat and 
light without moisture in the air. This is an interest- 
ing and distinctive feature of Egypt. Even the vege- 
tation p-rows to maturity without any rain t-o wash cM 
the dust of the desert. 

Looking' westward from the pyramid the im- 
broken expanse of brown sand looks dreary and deso- 
late in the extreme. There is nothing in the wide, arid 
regions of our great plains and deserts that can com- 
pare with the Sahara in its repulsive desolation. We 
instinctively turned away with a feeling of fear and 
dread. As we looked to the south and toward the 



282 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

valley, we belield a wonderful scene. The deep gTeenr 
of the lowland contrasted with the naked hills on 
either side, with the towns and villages among th.6 
palm groves, with the busy life that disa]:)pears as the 
distance lenothens out, and above all the wonderful 
city, Cairo, that lay smiling at our feet, with its gilded 
towers, domes and minarets gleaming in the unbroken 
sunlight, fonned a picture that belongs to Egypt and 
to it alone, for there is more or less rain in all other 
habitable parts of the earth. 

The descent was more tiresome than the ascent, 
and we felt it considerably. We began to relax from 
the intense excitement, and are more conscious of pain. 
From the Uv^ of the pyramid we saw a lesser one near 
by, and southward in the desert a group of small ones, 
which were interesting objects as seen through the 
glass. The s])hinx is near the southwest corner, and 
we looked down upon it in a way that intensified our 
desire for a nearer view of this wonderful work of a 
lost race, and to it we hurried on reaching the gTound. 
To me it had an interest equal to anything ever seen 
before or since. The sand has been all cleared away, 
and we now understand the figure ; it is a human head- 
ed lion, ninety feet long, hdng down with the fore 
paws extended as in nature. The whole thing has been 
cut out of a solid rock cliff, it is still a part of the rock 
formation, and has not been detached. There is a 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. 283 

Space of eight to twelve feet wide excavated all around 
it four feet lower tluin its l)ody, thus leaving it as if it 
were lying on a long block of stone. 

It is impossible to convev a correct idea of the 
massive figure. Everything is in such proportion, ^he 
joining of the lion and the human neck is so perfect 
that we could not determine the point of the union. 
The whole figure can be better understood by saying 
that from the tip of the chin to the top of the fore- 
head is fourteen feet, and this measurement is in har- 
mony with the size of the forehead, body and limbs. 
The face has evidently been noble and verv beautiful^ 
but it is now scarred and mutilated. Some brutal 
Turkish soldiers fired a four-pound cannon at the head 
the ball striking the side of the face, but a genius of 
the fine arts could restore it. Xear by the sphinx an old 
buried and lost temple has been discovered, and exca- 
vations promise rich discoveries. A long passage has 
been opened, which leads to an alabaster chamber so 
beautifully dazzling that the eye cannot bear the re- 
flection when a magiiesium light is introduced. 

At last we turned from these wonders to the cool 
shade of the acacia trees, and took our lunch and com- 
pared notes and impressions, and here we fully realized 
the ability of our ladv companion. She was not only 
posted in history, but a linguist and antiquarian. As 
we were preparing to go back to the city, the rank and 



284 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

iile of tourists were coming out to <!<► their climbing in 
the heat of the day, instead of early morning as we 
had done. We went directly to the gTeat museum, 
where the wonders of lost Egypt are now being col- 
lected on her own soil; we walked through the long 
hall among the relics of the past, until we seemed to 
belong to the past ourselves ; but when we entered the 
hall of Pharaohs we were still more astonished and 
pleased with ^liss Havens, for she could read the in- 
scripticvns on the coffins, which had been made 4000 
years ago, giving the name and date of death of the 
now dry and shrivelled mummy, that was once a living 
king. The kings of the dynasties were ranged in 
groups in long lines in the hall of the kings with name 
and supposed pericvd of their reigns. There was a 
break in one line, where three rather noted mummies 
were separated from the others. Miss Havens read on 
the papyri that they were father, son and grandson, 
the middle one the ''Pharaoh of the Exodus," and the 
younger his successor. The three were in no way un- 
like the others excepting they were above them in 
height. Their biographies w^ere written with the same 
characters as thc^se of hundreds of years before and 
after their time. T^pon leavinsr the museum we re- 
turned tc> the hotel to rest and discuss the ever-increas- 
ing wonders that were coming up on every side. We 
decided that Egvpt had to be seen to be rightly under- 



OF ADDI80N COFFIN, 285 

stood. The next day was spent in goino: through the 
citj, driving through the clean streets of modern 
Cairo, thronged by people from every nation under 
heaven, with a strange mina'ling of extreme western 
and extreme eastern life. The bicycle rider went fly- 
ing by, the donkey rider with driver running behind, 
the fine English coach and four whirled past, the huge 
freight camel with its great load aud long swinging 
gait. The western lady, with head erect and open face, 
crowded the veiled and shrouded eastern beauty in the 
fashionable bazaars, each pitying the other for lack of 
taste and for being so benighted and barbarous. So it 
was at every turn in every department of business; the 
habit and usages and customs of 4000 vears ago were 
seen from the electric cars; while the camel driver 
from Bagdad smoked his pipe from among bales and 
bundles looking with pitying eyes upon the horrid in- 
novations, devoutly calling upon Ali and the Prophet 
to deliver him from the influence of the barbai^ans. 
In the winter Cairo is. a paradise of beauty and enjoy- 
ment. In summer it is like a burning oven. 

With regret w^e left the valley of the Nile and 
went nearlv due east by rail to Ismalia on the Suez 
canal, there took steamer for Port Said on the coast. 
The ride on the canal w^as interesting but devoid of all 
romance, ^^^len in deep cuts we saw nothing but bare 
sandy or clay walls, when on the till> or acpieducts 



"286 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

across the valley and depressions the dreary burning 
sand stretches off to the horizon, which made the eyes 
and head ache like a snow field in the sunlight. Of the 
two the snow is the more endurable. We stopped, a 
day and night in Port Said to see the ^'Half VV^av 
Place" of the world. All ships and steamers going to 
or from the east, stop there to hear the news, exchange 
reports, get supplies, send cablegrams, write letters and 
have a short rest. The port is always full of ships 
with flags of all nations flvinp- from the flagstaff, while 
the character and look of the sailors defv description. 
They range from East Indian pirates, to splendid 
specimens of English and American manhood. 

Erom Port Said ^ve went by steamer to Jaffa in 
Palestine. The sea being quite rough, at Jaffa the 
steamer lay out a mile from shore. The passengers 
and bagaa^e were picked up by brawn v Arabs and 
dropped into boats alongside and caught by the fellows 
in the boats. It was a new and rather unpleasant sen- 
sation, this being dropped, but it was all successfully 
accomplished without a miss. The ride through the 
dangerous reefs in the rough sea was quite enjoyable, 
for we had such confidence in our Arab boatmen and 
their fellows on shore, that had we upset they would 
have carried us ashore upon their backs. This harbor 
and the reef thi-ouo-h which we were passing has been 
associated with human events €ver since the confusion 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 287 

of tongues, hence a small adventure would have been 
enjoyable, but we landed safelv and realized at last 
that we stood upon'tbe Holv Land. 

Jaffa is one of the oldest cities of the world* 
Pliny says it was a city l)efore the flood. There is an 
undoubted record that it was an important city in the 
time of Sennacherib. It has had an eventful history j^^ 
been destroyed and rebuilt many times, and has been 
closely connected with Jewish historv since the time 
of Joshua. It was the seaport of Solomon, and a por- 
tion of a massive sea wall built bv him is still standing, 
though today it is nearlv a hundred yards inland. The 
crusaders made it one of their strongholds, and many 
of their walls and towers are still standing. Amon^ 
the interesting relics is the house of Simon, the tanner, 
with, a stone tan vat in perfect preservation standing 
before a group of houses suiTOunding the small open 
court, showing by their consti'iiction that they were 
built before our era. In an orange orchard, some dis- 
tance off, we saw the house in which Peter restored 
Dorcas to life, now partly under ground. It belongs 
to the same period as the house of Simon. 

The city has 25,000 inhabitants, Mohammedans, 
Jews and Christians, and to the historian, antiquarian 
and general reader is full of interest. For a mile or 
more it is surrounded by orange orchards, gardens, 
vineyards and flowers protected by thick hedges of 



288 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

thorny cacti. There are many hospitals, schools and 
churches maintained by Europeans, which are doing 
much good. Eastern life is seen here a* at Alexandria 
with persistent unchanging customs in contrast with 
European improvements. The ties on the Jerusalem 
railroad were delivered on the landing by ships from 
ISTorway. From the landing to the construction train 
they were carried on camels, six being a camel's load, 
and it was a novel sight to see a long line of these 
strctng animals carrying their unwieldy burdens; 
everybctdy gave them the right of way as they passed. 

In the noisy market place we saw for the first 
time ^Hwo women grinding at the mill," though we 
did not take one as in the scripture ; we also saw a man 
grinding alone, 7)erspirinp- as in a harvest field; both 
mills after the ])attern of those on the oldest monji- 
ments in Egypt. It wa^ the same with many things 
on sale. There has been no change for 4000 years, aiid 
the mechanics and craftsmen worked like automatons 
with their primitive tools. All seemed as incapable of 
change a^ the camel to alter his hump, or the China- 
man his bias eyes. 

At 4 p. m. we tcKtk a carriage and drove two hours 
to the toAvn of Ramlah, along a fine pike road, equal to 
anything in Europe, and crossed the plain of Sharon 
with all its wonderful memories. Ramlah was one of 
the crusaders' important depots. A large ruined 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 289 

ehurt'li, and a well preserved iuassiv(^ stone tower still 
remain to tell their story. There is a grand view from 
the old town. AVe slept at a German hotel, found 
good, clean beds and German food. In tlu^ early 
mornine: we started for Jerusalem. It would take a 
book to describe all the historic and interesting places 
and events on the road, such as the scene of Samson's 
exploit with the foxes, the valley of Ajalon and 
Joshua's long day, Latroon an<l other strongholds of 
the olden time of the C'liisaders, Kirjath-Jearim and 
its events, Xioopolis, Ain Kairaini,'the birthplace of 
John the Baptist, Emmaus, near which runs the brook 
from which David chose the stones to slay Goliath of 
Gath, tomb of Samuel and a score more. 

Contrary to all my expectations the approach to 
Jerusalem was not as sensational and exciting as my 
childhood dreams had pictured; we could not see th-? 
city until within thirty rods of the north corner of the 
wall near Jaffa -ate. A new city is building up to 
the north and west that hid the wall as we approach(.'d 
from that side. We stopped in the new city at the 
Howard hotel in view of the Jaifa gate and tower. It 
was afternoon when we arrived, but we soon started 
out with a native Greek church (Jhristian as giiide and 
interpreter, Elias Salmon, who spoke American well. 
We entered the city at the Jaffa gate, went through 
the street of David, Christian street, two or three mar- 



290 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ket streets, to the chnrcli of the Xativity and back 
through the bazaars with our stock of reverence for 
the holy city rapidly going down. We were astonished 
and disgusted with the loathsome animals, dogs, donk- 
eys, camels, cows, sheep and goats, and the throngs of 
dirty, degraded people, with every kind of a horrid 
smell that can be imagined, and were ready to say that 
all our toil and travel had been in vain. That night 
in comparing notes all united in one thing, that 
Jerusalem was the dirtiest city we had ever seen, and 
that the beautiful ideal pictures of early life were 
ruined, and Ave were so stirred up in mind and spirit, 
that we did not sleep well, but we saved oureelves from 
condemning it too hastily. 

Next morning we set out for Jericho and the 
Dead Sea. Older tourists and our guide advised this 
as a remedy for our disgust with what we had seen. 
the trip was made on horseback. AVe passed Gethse- 
naane around the south end of the Mount of Olives, by 
Bethany, then through hills and low mountains, past 
the spot where Christ laid the parable of the Good 
Samaritan, and a more fitting place could not be found. 
We passed the brook Chereth where the prophet hid 
from his enemies, a thousand feet below the mountain 
road upon which we were traveling. Suddenly at a 
turn in the road, we came in sight of the valley of the 
Jordan, the Dead Sea, the Mountains of Moab and Mt. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 291 

Kel)(.. The sceiic was wonderful, and so many events 
rushed through the memory that it was a partial eom- 
penisation for the disappointment at Jerusalem; 
though the wide plain of the Jordan was nearly deso- 
late, the mountains all around were naked and bare, 
there was something gTand in the history of all the eye 
could see. 

"We ^'isited the site of Jericdio and found that 
scarcely a fragment remains, save the wonderful foun- 
tain that was inside its walls; it comes out from under 
a heavy archway from under the hill, it is clear and 
pure and will fill a fifteen inch pipe all the time. The 
fountain is what made Jericho such a noted city in 
Joshua's day. i^ot a living thing was seen on the 
barren hill where the city stood. Two miles away 
there is a miserable dirty, flea and bug infested village 
that bears the name. Fortunately for tourists, the 
Germans have built a nice, comfortable hotel, where 
we lodged, but the evening was disturbed by the liide- 
ous shouts and discordant sound of drum and horn in 
the hands of pilgrims, who were returning- from a 
shrine called Job's tomb. They were a Avild, repulsive 
kine- rabble, dirty, ragged, l>eggarlv beings. 

In the early morning we left the hotel and start- 
d for the Dead Sea, two hours' ride across the deserted 
and desolate valley. As we approached the sea we 
saw and passed among peculiar-looking sand hills and 



J 00 



e( 



292 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

irregular ridges, showing that the sea had once covered 
much larger area than now, and those hills were the 
old shore lines. When we reached the sea, another 
shadow came over our dreams. All had pictured in 
childhood a dark, silent body of water, surrounded by 
black, frowning cliifs and caverns, all gloomy and hor- 
rible. Instead, we stood on the shore of a sparkling 
lake, with a white-pebbled bank, the waves gently 
rippling at our feet, no cliffs near, the mountains sunlit 
and brown like all others in the country; every thing- 
different from our ideals. It was true all* was silent; 
there Avas no noise of insect, reptile or bird, but the 
stillness was soft and soothing: there was more of rev- 
erence than of terror. 

As the custom is, a part of the company went in 
bathing, and instead of swimming, just floated on the 
surface on account of the density of the water. My 
friend, John Van Lindley, went in and could not get 
under water until he jumped up and went down head 
flrst, and then only for a moment. A stout English 
lady made long and persistent efforts to go under, but 
failed. She floated like a cork and was very much 
worried at the failure. From the sea we rode four 
miles to Joshua's ford of the Jordan river, and here 
was another disappointment. It was just a common 
muddy-looking river, nothing sacred, holy or wonder- 
ful in sight. In places the mud of a recent overflow 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 293 

was not dry. The river was thirty yards wide and 
twenty feet deep, llowing live to seven miles an hour, 
and we were four miles from its mouth. The shore 
is lined with a thick growth of small trees and brush, 
much like other rivers. Though disappointing to the 
eye, it was none the less interesting on accoimt of its 
wonderful history in connection with the human race, 
the course of empire and the rise and fall of the king- 
doms. 

Before we had made half the distance from the 
sea to the river, all who had bathed began to twist and 
squirm in their saddles. The salt brine on their backs 
was almost unbearable. My friend's head especially 
was feeling exceedinglv unpleasant. When we 
reached the river thev did not stand on the bank hesi-. 
tating, but made haste to plunge in and get rid of the 
salt of the Dead sea. There is no trace of the old ford 
now. The deposit of thirty centuries has filled the 
valley many feet deep, and there are no fords for many 
miles up the river. The recent overflow had left a de- 
posit about as thick as common writing paper. It was 
drpng and curling up, and had a slight alkali taste, 
and was a yellowish brown in color. 

Upon returning to the hotel tired and hungry, 
we lay down earlv and had a good night's rest. The 
next morning we had a rr.ugh ride back to Bethany, 
where wt took lunch, and rested in the shade of some 

19 



294 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

olive trees by the wayside, then visited the house o± 
Mary and Martha. It belongs to the period of Simon 
at Jaffa. Sixty miles up a small ravine on the east side 
of the Mount of Olives are many old tombs cut in the 
rock, from one of which Lazarus was raised from the 
dead. We ascended the east side of Olivet, by a very 
rough, stony path to the t(jp, where are several build- 
ings, including an old Turkish tower and minaret. 
From, the top of the tower there is the finest view of 
sacred and wonderful ])laces in all Palestine. To the 
east is the Dead sea, to the west the Mediterranean, 
before and beneath is Jerusalem, which lies at an in- 
cline, so we saw all its streets, houses, walls and the 
Mosque of Omar as the central figure. This view was 
so impressive that my feeling of disappointment 
measurably left me, and I began to see things in a new 
light, and the whole scene took on a different coloring. 
The place where the tower stood was ])robably 
the spot where Christ stood when he wept over the 
doomed city with its millions of inhabitants, and while 
I was gazing in awe at Jerusalem as it is. my mind 
was filled with this thought, '^What might have been," 
if Jei-usalem had received the Savior, and I could not 
refrain from tears when all the past came up in mem- 
ory. The descent on the west w^as so steep and rough 
we went down on foot, as far as Gethsemane, where 
we stopped an hour to examine the sacred spot. It is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 295 

now enclosed by a wall and iron grating, so people 
cannot carry all the earth away, a sad necessity, for 
thousands of visitors were annually carrying away a 
handful of the sacred soil. 

We returned to our hotel with very dilferent feel- 
ings from those we had on leaving, and the next day 
walked more than half around the city on the wall; 
we could look down in the streets without wading 
through the muck and garbage. We could also see the 
noted houses, churches and sacred places. From the 
northeast corner we looked upon Calvary, on the east 
side we looked into the valley of Jehoshaphat, where 
Absalom's pillar is cut out of the solid rock, and has 
remained through all the vicissitudes of time unbroken 
and well preserved. It is nearly fifty feet high and 
stands out as a landmark. Lower down we saw the 
tomb of Jehoshaphat, with a large chamber that 
opens into secret caves and passages not yet explored. 
Then we saw the pyramid of Zachariah. This con- 
sists of a solid block of stone sixteen feet wide and 
deep, twenty-nine feet high, and hewn out of the solid 
cliff, with a broad passage all around its base. The 
face of this block is beautifully ornamented and it is 
held in great reverence by the Jews, especially by the 
remnant of the captivity, who still live in the valley 
of the Euphrates and eastern Arabia. From the 
corner at the temple grounds, we looked south on the 



296 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

slope of the mount and saw thousands of white stones, 
marking the ^aves of Jews who have been buried 
there through many centuries. On the other side the 
scenes froni the wall were very interesting, but not 
like the eastern. 

After view^ing the city from the wall we ven- 
tured on a general survey. At first the streets seemed 
intricate and confusing; many of them are steep and 
have a succession of stone steps, others are vaulted 
over and covered with houses. The principal ones are 
pretty well defined and easily followed, but all are 
very narrow. The Street of David is but sixteen feet 
wide, with no sidewalk. It starts from the Jaifa gate 
and goes eastward to the temple grounds, and is lined 
with shops, stores, gToceries, fancv bazaars, manu- 
factories of trinkets and tovs, shops where shoes and 
sandles, in endless variety, are to be found, and a few 
rooms in which primitive silk weaving is going on. 

We went to St. Stephen's gate near the north 
corner on the east side, and started westward, and 
passed thrcaigh a very interesting part of the city. 
We went through St. Anne's church. Xear it on the 
other side Avas a deserted puddle of stagnant water, 
said to mark the Pool of Bethesda. Then came the 
Chapel of Scourging and the Street Via Dolorosa, 
along which a detestable superstition locates the 
'fourteen stations of the cross," each of which is 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. ^97 

visited by multitudes of ignorant, deluded people, from 
which we turned away in disgust and pity. We saw 
the Convent of the Sisters of Zion, which contains the 
Ecco Homo Arch, a fragment of the Judgment Hall 
of Pontius Pilate. From the roof of that building 
Jerusalem and the temple can be seen to great ad- 
vantage. It is probably the l)est view in the city. 
Christian street deseiwes especial notice. It runs from 
David's street towards Damascus gate, and unites with 
the one from St. Stephen's. ^N'ear to the Jaffa gate we 
turned to the right and ascended Mount Zion, passed 
the tower of Hippicus, when we came to one of the 
cleaner portions of the city. There are several 
churches on Mount Zion. The view from the top of 
the Armenian church is fine. 

The trip through these streets, and the scenes 
from the lookouts, had given us quite a correct idea 
of the lay of the city, so we now explored the corners 
and outlying portions, and a'ot a clear impression of 
the character of the inhabitants, and thus received a 
better understanding of the time coming when the 
^'Sanctuary shall be cleansed." 

We \dsited the Mosque of Omai", or Haram, as the 
Turks call it. The description I had read prepared 
me to see a very l)eautiful edifice, but when we en- 
tered the building illumined by the morning sun, I 
was amazed and bewildered at the dazzling splendor 



298 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

that met the eye on every side. When I stood by the 
dome of the rock, the Holy of Holies, where the ark of 
the covenant once stood, a feeling of solemn awe came 
over me, and I felt as if the place were holy still. I 
had see'n the church of St. Peter's in Rome, St. Paul's 
and Westminster Abbey in London, Notre Dame and 
the Confessional in Paris, the Cathedral at Strasburg, 
and many other churches, some of which were more 
vast and imposing in size, but nothing had ever ap- 
proached in splendor to what the Mosque of Omar is 
inside its walls. The Mohammedans have lavished un- 
told millions in beautifying their sacred shrine. All 
the artistic skill of western civilization, united with 
the voluptuous imagination of the east, has been com- 
bined in producing an object not surpassed by any 
age, or people. The venerable High Priest and 
Patriarch was very kind in answering question?, and 
seemed interested in our country and our rapid na- 
tional expansion. The two hours spent with him in 
that wonderful building, on that sacred spot, v^ll not 
be forgotten, nor can I think of him but as a brother 
in the hope of immortalitv. 

The Jews have several synagogues in the city, 
one more noted than the others, its green dome is a 
distinctive mark in looking down on the city from the 
Mount (yf Olives. It holds some very ancient and 
hadscaiielv inscribed rolls of the Old Testament. The 



OF ADDISON OOFFIN. 299 

Jews are debarred from many privileges and subjected 
to annoying persecutions from the bigoted eastern 
Christians, as well as Moslems. They are not permitted 
to enter the old temple grounds, but there is one part 
of the old wall of the temple enclosure where they are 
allo-wed to gather. "A retired place on the outside of 
the southwest wall of the harem is the only spot where 
the children of Israel are permitted to congregate, 
freely to gaze at, to touch, and to weep over the old 
stones hewn and laid there by their ancestors. The 
foul, obscure entrance to this place, through a narrow 
lane, is a fit type of the abject misery of their race here 
and elsewhere. Here they come in numbers, especi- 
ally on Fridays. Jews of all .countries and of all de- 
grees, rich and poor, men and women, some in velvet 
and rare furs and some in squalid rags, bring with 
them their Old Testaments, which they place in the 
crevices between the massiA^e stones, and from them 
read aloud the story of their former glorious days, con- 
fessing their sins with tears and loud lamentations; re- 
citing touching prayers and calling upon ''The Go<l 
of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,'' to remember and ful- 
fill His ancient promises to His chosen people. Those 
standing close to the revered wall rest their hands upon 
it sobbing, while those further off stretch out loving 
hands to touch its stones. Old women sit upon the 
ground reading or reciting the promises, and stop to 



300 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

wipe away the tears that stream down their wrinkled 
faces." As I stood gazing upon this strange, sad scene, 
there came again the voice to my mind, ''What might 
have been," instead of all this sorrow. 

Outside the city for many miles around every 
valley, rock and hill has some connection with historic 
events of the Holy City, and it is hard to make a selec- 
tion when there is not time to see all. We began our 
outside excursions by visiting Bethlehem and Solo- 
mon's Pools. We passed several modern villages built 
by the Germans, French and Russians, each national- 
ity having large hospices where the throngs of pil- 
grims find rest and shelter at small cost. 

At Bethlehem we saw the ruins of the inn that 
was ''full" when Joseph and Mary arrived, also the 
half cave mangers under an overhanging rock, in one 
of which the young babe was laid when born. These 
mangers are now surrounded and covered by an im- 
mense structure, resulting from the union of several 
churches; as in many other places there is much 
bigotry and superstition connected with the place. 
Froni the east end of the hill on which the town stands, 
across a narrow, deep valley, we saw a broad plateau of 
a few thousand acres, on which the shepherds were 
watching their flocks the night when Christ was bom. 
They had al)Out one and a half miles to go to find the 
babe, then to return across the valley to their flocks. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 301 

That plateau is a sheep and goat pasture today. There 
were thousands in sight when we were there, and thus 
has it been through all the intervening centuries, and 
ahvays will be, because it pays. When w^e turned 
aw^ay from Bethlehem, we were satisfied that the 
Scripture is true concerning it and its part in history. 

Solomon's Pools, three in number, are several 
miles further on, and are supplied by a fountain that 
would fill an eight-inch pipe. An earthquake frac- 
tured them, so they hold l)ut little w^ater, yet the un- 
der ground aoueducts are perfect, and furnish some 
water to the city. The reservoirs are large and 
massive, showing the style of concrete masonry of that 
time, giving us a key to compare the age of ruins. 
Here is masonry of Solomon's epoch, while iVlexan- 
dria showed that of Alexander's day, the pyramids 
that of prehistoric period, and so we may learn as by 
an alphabet the era of ruins bv the character of their 
masonry. 

On our return we stopped at Kachel's tomb, and 
called up the history of the Hebrews since she was laid 
at rest, not only of that nation, but the whole human 
race. This tomb is and has been held in reverence 
through all time, and has always been kept in repair. 
Its present form is a solid pyramid of stone. It has 
been repaired bv the Moslems. At the tomb the road 
divides. The main road goes to Hebron and a horse 
path turns to the right, leading to Ala Karim, the 



302 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

birthplace of John the Baptist. It is a beautiful village, 
surroimded by green fields, orchards, gardens and vine- 
yards, the prettiest rural spot in Palestine. There is 
an ancient church here that was built in the fifth cen- 
tury. It ha^ since been enlarged, and was quite im- 
posing as seen from the hills. It belongs to the Greek 
church. The Sisters of Zion have a school for girls 
near the village, which adds to the interest. Another 
route, which is very rocky, passes a Greek monastery, 
and comes into the Jaffa road near the city. 

In going out by the Damascus gate, we turned to 
the right from the old road and ascended a hill, where, 
near the summit, there is a small bench or plateau of 
a fourth of an acre ; there we Avent up a steeper gTade 
to the top, where there was a circular area of about one 
acre, shaped like a shallow wash pan turned lx)ttom 
upward. This is Mount Calvary. From the top we 
could have seen into the outer court- of the temple. 
At the foot of the hill near where the ascent is made 
there is a low cliff of rock with a crescent shaped 
garden of three-fourths of an acre. At the left of the 
garden entrance are several tombs cut in the low cliff, 
which in their finish show they belong to the day of 
Christ. 

When we climbed the hill to the little plateau, 
we saw the place where the women stood ''afar off" 
during the crucifixion, yet could see and hear all that 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 803 

was said and done. On toj) there is room for a thou- 
sand people to stand and the hill is nearly solid rock, 
and has not changed and conld not change, so we came 
away satisfied that we had seen Calvary. It was 
natural and easy, when Christ's body was taken downi, 
to come to the west end of the little garden, turn in 
and place it in its resting place. But what of standing 
where the crucifixion took place? Every one has his 
own impressions. Some feel like and do pray, some 
thank God that they have been permitted to stand on 
the sacred spot, some shout and go into ecstatics, while 
many others have no feeling or do not show it in any 
way, but to me the place did not seem more sacred 
than any other; but the thought of what had gone out 
through the world from that spot was almost over- , 
whelming. From there Christianity had gone forth, 
and I seemed to look down the centuries and see what 
it had done, and on to the end of what it would do. 

Off to the right of the Damascus road beyond 
the hills is the ^'Tomb of the Kings." It is a large, 
rock-hewn chamber open to the sky, about thirty yards 
square. The west end of the excavation is cut into 
passages and curiously cut chambers, niches and 
shelves for the reception of the sarcophagi, which have 
all long since disappeared. There is one large cham- 
ber which has been closed w^ith a huge, rolling stone, 
which is still standing in its groove at the side of the 



301 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

entrance. This excavation is thirty feet deep, and has 
a reservoir in the southeast corner, which still holds 
water. A mile and a half further on there is a broad 
high archway cut in the face of the hill \vith a broad 
23assage cut far back in the solid rock, with tomb cham- 
bers cut in the sides. This is the 'Tombs of the 
Judges," a dark and gloomy place, yet like that of 
"The Kings," very interesting, and gives a deep and 
definite impression of the truthfulness of the Bible 
record. 

The valley of Hinnom begins near the Jaffa 
gate, on the southwest side of the city. It is deep and 
now dry and desolate looking — Tophet-Gehenna. It 
runs southeast between Jerusalem and the '^Hill of 
Evil Counsel," which is now attracting much attention 
from the fact that it seems to cover what appears to 
have been an ancient subterranean city. It is now 
being explored and promises to be exceedingly rich in 
relics as far back as the 'old Hittite times. All the 
way down the valley the hills are honey-combed with 
rock-hewn chambers, some of the passages leading off 
hundreds of yards into the hill, just how far is still 
unknown. It is becoming more and more a question 
of when, by whom and for what purpose those vast 
subterranean passages and immense chambers were 
excavated. The three hills, Mt. Zion, Mt. Moriah and 
Mt. Akra are standing above a vast underground city. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 305 

'Jlic entrance to it is near the I )ania6eus gate. The ex- 
cavation goes back to the remotest antiquity. Much 
of the work was done by a lost race, possibly ten thou- 
sand years ago. Some of their methods of work and 
their tools tell a tale of silent wonder. At the point 
where the valley of Jehoshaphat and Hinnom unite, 
there is a deep well, or an artesian fountain, which, 
when there has been a heavy continuous rainfall, over- 
flows and sends a river of water down the valley. It is 
supposed to be connected with the p-reat fountain, or 
lake, that underlies the whole section, for in boring in 
the new city, an inexhaustible fountain is struck at a 
depth of two to three hundred fe^t, and St. Mary's 
fountain, near the Golden gate, is a regular intermit- 
tent spring from the great fountain. 

On the slope of Olivet, opposite the union of the 
valleys, is the hospital of the lepers, where they lodge 
and are supplied with abundance of good bread and 
water, but are not permitted to enter the city, and can 
only stand outside on the east and north of the wall, 
nowhere else. Of their looks and homd condition I 
do not wish to write, for it fills the mind with inex- 
pressible pity, loathing and horror to see the frightful 
condition some are in, dying by piecemeal and yet 
cannot die, suffenng death a hundred times before 
it comes. 

As the ]\rosque of Omar is the most beantiful 



306 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tiling in Palestine, so is tlie Cliurcli of tlie Holy Sepul- 
cher the biggest liumbug in all the east, if not in the 
world, and the Christian nations should unite in sup- 
pressing it at once; in fact we grew weaiy and dis- 
gusted with the senseless supei*stitions that met us at 
every turn, and in every place. One impious Ameri- 
can prayed the Lord to send another Joshua to cleanse 
and purify the land again. Yet there is so much to see, 
so many Bible and historic memories called up in and 
around the city, that we felt like throwing the mantle 
of charity over much that was repulsive. I^otwith- 
standing there is muck and mire in the streets, super- 
stition, bigotry, sin, suffering, sorrow and shame to be 
met, it pays any one well read in the Bible and history 
to visit Jerusalem and study its past and present; for 
as its past has been cannected with humanity, its near 
future promises to become more so. The slow but sure 
building of a new city outside the wall, the steady in- 
crease of English and American influence is not with 

out deep significance. 

We left Jerusalem and returned to Jaft'a, and 
there took a steamer for Beyroot. Had a pleasant trip, 
found a good hotel and on the 20th took diligence 
drawn by six horses, three abreast, for Damascus, over 
a good pike road, built by the Erench. We crossed 
the Lebanon amid a whirling snow storm, with all the 
higher portion of the range still covered with many 



OP ADDISON COFFiN. 307 

inches of the winter snow, and tor a tew hours we suf- 
fered severely witli the cold. We hinched at Stora, 
beyond the mountain, and there took a })rivate carriage 
and turned aside for the ruins of Baalbec, where we 
arrived at 5 p. m., cokl and tired. As there was no fire 
at the hotel, we rebelled against su{di treatment, and 
by a little positive reasoning we were soon supplied 
with a large brazier full of l)urning cdiarcoal. We 
were soon warmed and ready for a hot supper served in 
real eastern style. 

Though late in the day we were so excited at 
being near the world's greatest wonder in the line of 
ruins, that we took a short run to the great temples. 
Our interest arose tc the highest point of intensity as 
we slowlv walked around and through the fallen gran- 
deur and departed glory. On every side was a mass of 
wreckage that was so stupendous and bewildering, thai 
we stood and gazed upon it in awe. All that we had 
seen before became dwarfed into a miniature, the 
mind was full of astonishment when we realized that 
all that ^vi*eck was once in the fonn of a beautiful 
temple. The mystery that covers Baalbec adds to the 
impression made on the mind at the first sight. We 
recognize the fact that the foundations of these ruins 
were laid by a lost race, who left no other monument 
to tell that they had been. 

When darkness came we returned to our brazier 



308 



LIFE AND TKAVELS 



of coals and talked long over tlie new experience, and 
that night I dreamed of wandering back through the 
infinite past and lived with the people who are now 
silent in the dust, and who have left nothing but ruined 
towers and temples; and realized that thev had lived 
and died as this generation w^a^ living, moving where 
now,— 

''The spirits of the desert dwell, 
A\'Tiere eastern e^randeur shone 
And vultures scream, hyenas yell, 
'Round Beauty's mouldering throne." 

I was suddenly called back to earth by the clang of the 
brazier, and a big, burly Syrian dumped his charcoal 
on the fire, calling out we knew not what, but supposed 
it must be breakfast, and so we arose to find a ixdsty, 
cool, bad morning. After we had breakfasted we 
started out in spite of the rain to see the ruins more in 
detail. We went to the northwest side, where we saw 
and touched three great stones. They are 13x13x62 
feet long, and are on top of the prehistoric Avail about 
fifty feet above the foundation. They have been 
transported three-quarters of a mile, and lifted to their 
place. There is no mortar or cement visible, yet the 
joints are so perfect that I could not thrust the point 
of a little blade of my pocket knife an eighth of an 
inch into the joints at any place. Just beneath these 
large stones are many 12 feet thick and 3(i to 36 long. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 309 

In the quarry we could see the place where the three 
large stones were cut out, and alongside a fourth one 
has been quarried and left lying. It is 14x15 and 72 
feet long. It is finished out but never moved. Why, 
tradition does not tell, and history is silent. I climbed 
to it and walked its length. One can only realize its 
enormous size by standing on it. The quarries extend 
over many acres and in places are fifty feet deep. 

At the southwest corner there is a portion of the 
wall 125 feet high, the highest in the ruins. The 
great open, inner court is 450x400. On the west side 
there are no chaml^ers; on the other three sides there 
has been a second massive wall thirty to forty feet 
from the outer one. The space between has been built 
in large chambers, many of them showing great 
beauty in design and finish. The surface of the inner 
wall is adorned ^^dth the highest architectural beauty 
of the various nations who held control On the south 
side we saw the six great columns that are still stand- 
ing, the landmark of the ruins. They are 84 feet high, 
7 feet in diameter, and are held together and to the 
wall by blocks of stone 6x6x12 feet. The tops are 125 
feet above the foundation of the portico. The temple 
of Jupiter, wdiich stands near the temple of the Sun, 
on the south side, is in better state of preservation, but 
smaller. It has been very beautifully ornamented 
and was built at a later day, probably by the Pheni- 
cians. 

20 



310 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Everywhere we were impressed with the vastness 
of the structures. The builders were our superiors in 
mechanical skill and architecture. The sculptures 
were perfect in their kind and more ideal than at anv 
later day. The lost race seems to have been giants in 
every particular. The evidence left is convincing. 
When the Greek came with his refinement, he built on 
the prehistoric foundations that had not been wrecked 
by war and earthquake; to the Greek structure was 
given Greek adorning. When the Roman came he 
added Roman art and beauty, and at last when the 
Turk came he began to destroy, and the earthquake 
of 1759 finished the ruin. 

There is as much of the prehistoric temple under 
ground as above, and that part, though choked and 
filled with rubbish, is too strong for even earthquake 
power. Stand where we would inside, or outside, the 
walls, or on the hills overlooking, the impression was 
the same, that of wonder and astonishment, and the 
question came up, why should the grandest thing of 
earth be ruined by the bloody hand of war? In all de- 
scnptions I have seen given by historians and tourists, 
the half has not been told, nor can it be. One must 
stand in the great court, surrounded by the vast wreck- 
age and stand on the tottering wall and gaze on the 
whole scene to fully comprehend what Baalbec was in 
its glory, and what it is in ruin. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 311 

Like all other ancient ruins, the neighboring hills 
and cliffs are full of rock-hewn chambers and passages, 
and it pays the trouble to visit some of them ; each na- 
tion has cut its own favorite form of chamber and 
passage, sometimes they are in proximity and in in- 
teresting contrast. To the east, in the valley, are 
many rock chambers ingeniously cut so no water will 
get in from the winter rains, suggesting the idea that 
they may have been graneries or storage places. 

We returned to Stora in a heavy rain-storm, then 
took diligence and reached Damascus near night, and 
were again (piite cold, for the Anti-Lebanon range of 
mountains was covered with snow, and it was melting 
very fast. Another brazier of glowing coals gave us 
grateful relief and a good night's rest, though at all 
hours we heard the rushing of many waters, the hotel 
b^ing on the bank of a river. We spent two days in 
and around the city. In one resi>ect it was disap- 
pointing. It has many marks of beauty, and not many 
of age. It had nothing startling or sensational, but 
much that Avas very interesting. I marvel not that it 
is the oldest city in the world, for there is no better 
place for one. It is in the midst of a lovely fertile 
plain, irrigated by two mountain rivers of pure spark- 
ling water, which never fails, with a healthy, tem- 
perate climate, and so long as men dwell on earth some 
will live at Damascus. 



312 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

We drove far out in the valley amoug gi'een 
wheat and rye fields, through a wilderness of mul- 
berry and fruit orchards and vineyards, to where 
Paul was smitten down. On return we drove around 
the city to see the remains of the old wall; we saw 
the window through which Paul was let down, near 
to the Jerusalem gate. AVe walked the whole length 
of the street called Straight; it varies from a straight 
line just enough to prevent one from seeing through 
from either end, ])ut in standing in the middle it 
lo<>ks perfectly straight. AVe walked many hours 
through the noisy markets, bazaars, wheat bins, camel 
and donkey market, and passed through the long 
street where silk weaving is carried on, and the prim- 
itive loom is plied by hundreds of sad-faced women. 
Then we visited the street given to the manufacture 
of toys and litth^ fancy articles to sell to tourists 
and strangers. It is proverbial all over the east 
that you must never offer a Damascus merchant more 
than one-third his price, or you will be deceived; the 
native guides will run travelers into the shops to get 
them smndlcil in trade instead of sho\ving them the 
city. 

The day before we an-ived, one of the singular 
events occurred that comes in Mahomedan coun- 
tries at irregular periods, and always among the de- 
scendants of Esau. Suddenly a man among the day 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 313 

laborers felt himself inspired to sing the songs of 
praise considered sacred by all Mahomedans. He 
went to the priest of the principal niosqne, and asked 
to go to the minaret at midnight to sing; at first 
the priest donbted his sanitv, for he knew the man 
had no voice for singing, whereupon the man began 
singing with such supernatural melody that all men 
were amazed. Tn answer as to when and how he 
learned the sacred songs, his reply was: ^^\llah (God) 
taught me." So he was permitted to sing, and the 
\vhole city was electrified with the sublime music that 
came from the lofty minaret for an hour beginning 
at midnight. The tAvo nights we were there the man 
sang his sacred songs, and though they were in the 
Syrian tongue, I had never heard such soft and per- 
fect melody come from human lips. The contrast 
between his voice and his fellow-countrymen was 
greater than that between a wood lark and a cawing 
crow. It was deeply interesting to me, for it seemed as 
though God had not wholly cast ofi the children of 
Esau, and in the day of restitution might call in the 
seed of Abraham. 

On the return from Damascus we again suffered 
from cold; on the Anti-Lebanon range a bleak \vind 
blew through the pass, and on the main range there 
had l>eeu eight inches more snow since we passed. 
Soon after leaving Stora, we met a large detach- 



314 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ment of Turkish recruits going to Damascus for drill 
and instruction; thej were wild, rougli-looking fel- 
lows, and wei-e cold and noisy, for they had just 
passed the snow line; behind them came 125 pack 
camels, roaring and bellowing with the cold. It was 
a novel sight, and required much skill on the part 
of our driver to avoid collisions with these unwieldy 
animals and their bulky loads. We also met a long 
train of freight wagons, each wagon drawn by three 
horses in tandem style; they were very difficult to pass, 
for the drivers were burly men and not very accommo- 
dating in yielding right of way. Xear the summit 
there were hundreds of wild mountaineers shoveling 
snow into two-bushel baskets, and carrying them on 
their heads to the top of large stone houses, into which 
the snoAv was dumped for summer use. Inside of the 
houses there was much shouting and yelling amongst 
those who packed the snow into a solid mass; it was 
truly a wild, novel scene; part of the time everything 
^vas obscured because enveloped with clouds of fine, 
drifting snow or frozen vapor, and then the snow 
shovelers would make extra noise amid the whirling 
clouds. The ascent and passage was slow; as we were 
quite cold, my friend and I got down and walked 
and ran a mile or more amid the snow, mist, clouds 
and mingled flashes of sunlight, a thing I would re- 
commend every one to do who has the strength, for 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 315 

it is an experience that is full of life and exciting 
energy; the occasional glow of sunlight was charm- 
ing heyond description. 

It took three hours to pass through the snow 
l)elt, then we came down into bright sunshine, amid 
green helds, orchards and gTOves, the lower portion 
of the range being covered with terraced gardens. 
A distant view showed many white villages nestled 
among the trees on the steeps. Soon we got sight 
of Beyroot, the broad valley, the bay, and the blue 
sea beyond. It was near sundown when we reached 
the city, where we enjoyed a w^arm room and an 
unbroken night's rest in what seemed civilized society, 
and found our bundles, which we had left at the 
hotel, all safe. Next morning, March 25th, 1892, 
we took carriage and were driven over a good pike 
road, and in three lioui-s reached Friends' Mission 
at Brumma, on a foothill of Mt. Lebanon, 2,500 feet 
above the sea. We were kindly greeted by the 
Friends, and found a quiet hotel and rest. We were 
introduced to all the managers and officers and many 
of the membership, and felt as though we were in 
touch with home life. Six weeks of constant travel 
in strange lands, among new, interesting and ever- 
changing scenes, in contact with different people, 
together with the effort made to see, hear and re- 
member all, was beginning to draw heavily on my 



816 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

powers of endurance, and rest was needed. AVe were 
much surprised and pleased A\dtli the situation, sur- 
roundings and prospects of the mission; everything 
indicated permanence. The buildings were all solid, 
well-built, stone structures; the grounds are being 
improved and beautified; a. quiet, home-like influ- 
ence pervades the mission, which is working out a 
change in that village and also those which surround 
it. A vn.de influence has been gained over the un- 
trained ignorant mountaineers, and it is marvelous to 
see what a door the Lord is opening in that land and 
how He inspired Eli Jones to select that spot to found 
a mission. 

From the buildings and from the hilltops near 
bv, the scener\- is grand and beautiful. All around 
south, east and north, are lofty, romantic mountains, 
toned down and hannonized by a soft blue haze; to 
the west is a wide expanse of the blue waters of 
the Mediterranean Sea, with the beautiful city of 
Beyroot and its harbor and shipping. Farther off 
beyond all, from south to northwest, the central range 
of Lebanon stood out in bold relief, covered with 
snow, which gives a sense of silent, majestic grandeur 
to the wonderful filling in. 

All around the ^dllage, across the mountain on 
which it stands, and down the long slopes on every 
side, were beautiful gi^o^es of young pine, inter- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 817 

mingled with tig, mulberrv and olive orchards, vine- 
yards, wheat fields and gardens, all resting on and 
made by terraces bnilt u}) by means of stone walls. 
Across a ravine to the east, we counted eleven vil- 
lages, and down the western slope five other villages, 
flll suiTonnded with orchards, gardens and groves. 
So beautifully blended together are nature and art, 
that the eye does not gTow weary with seeing, as in 
ynore historic places. 

On the Sabbath, 26th, we attended Brumma 
Monthly Meeting. William Allen, of England, was 
present, and delivered a good sermon, which was 
translated into Arabic by one of the members, a 
teacher in the boys' school. In transacting the bus- 
iness, there appeared to be as much sound, practical 
sense used, and as clear discernment manifested, as 
in the average American meetings, and there w^as 
real, living faith present. In the evening there was 
a general collection of the members in the boys' school 
room, with tea and lunch and a kindly greeting, while 
AVilliam Allen gave an informal address. 

After breakfast next morning we walked three 
miles towards the summit of the central range to 
another summit, from w^hich we had a wider and 
grander view of the ever-changing scene, everything, 
everywhere intensified by the great glittering snow 
fields in the backaround. Ev a kind invitation we 



318 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

took lunch at 1 p. in. with Miss Ellen Clayton and 
Miss M. E. Stephens, of England, the efficient man- 
agers of the medical hospital. Afterward they took 
ns on a long t(3ur of inspection, and a long ramble 
up and down the side of the mountain, through vil- 
lages out of sight from the top. There was a con- 
stant succession of surprises; at every turn, in and 
across every ravine, there was something new and 
almost startling. By hundreds of years of hard labor 
the whole mountain side had been terraced and cul- 
tivated; nearly ever)^where grape vines were being 
trained along the walls. The houses were all of stone, 
and flat on top, built into the side of the terrace;^ 
in many cases we could step on top of the houses 
from the next terrace wall. Children and chickens 
abounded, the former black-eyed, bright little fel- 
lows, who in infancy and early childhood are nearly 
white; the chickens seemed to be a part of the house- 
hold; eggs are abundant and cheap and universally 
used by all classes. 

The greatest wonder of the day was a genuine, 
primitive bake oven. It was in the shape of a big- 
jug, with the neck and upper part off. It was cut 
in solid rock, five feet deep and three in diameter, 
and was heated by dry grass pulled out of the gar- 
dens and the twdgs from fiiiit trees and the refuse 
from priming, ^^len the oven was hot, two women 



OF ADDISON COFFIN, 319 

sat down by it with a tub of dough and wooden 
trays as big- as a c-onimon dishpan turned bottom u]); 
the round of the trays just tit the curve of the oven. 
The women took himps of dough about the size <^i 
a pint cup, and dexterously spread them into thvn 
cakes on their trays, about fourteen inches in diam- 
eter, then leaning over, reached down and dabbed 
it to the side of the oven; the cake adhered and 
was baked by the time another was ready. These 
cakes, which are made from rye, are stacked in piles, 
and are the bakei-s' bread for Arabs, and nearly all 
Western Asia and Northern Africa. When the oven 
cools a few handfuls of dry grass are thrown in, which 
restores the heat. While watching this, allusion to 
grass and the oven in scripture came to mind: ^*The 
grass that to-day is, tomon*ow is cast in the oven." 
From the oven we ascended by winding paths among 
gardens and orchards and over walls, and learned 
more than we would have thought possible when we 
started, for we saw life as it is, and has been, for 
4,000 years, with no sign of change. The spades and 
mattocks are the same in form as chiseled on the 
monuments while the Hittites were in the land. 
Some of the foundations of the teiTaces were built 
before the time of Hiram. When we returned to 
the hospital we were tired, but highly pleased with 
the tour, and the kind ladies would not let us go 



320 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

until we had cake and a cup of tea, and we promised 
to pay the debt in a similar manner if they should ever 
come to America. 

One morning, by invitation of Miss Cadburj, and 
Miss M. E. Harris, of England, who have charge 
of the girls' school, we went to the school building at 
6:30 a. m. to see the whole routine of morning work, 
the getting up, washing, sweeping, dusting, making 
up of the cots, cleaning and refilling the olive oil 
lamps, and the old fat Syrian man cooking the break- 
fast on a Syrian stove with one-fourth the wood used 
in America. When the bell rang we went to break- 
fast; the girls sat at a long table, thirty-two in num- 
ber, while the teachers' table sat across the end of 
theirs. The girls had batter cakes, dried and pre- 
served fruit, with Avater to sup; the most novel thing 
was the way the water was drunk. Tt was in small 
jugs or jars, with a s])out on one side like a tea pot; 
they took the jug and held the spout about two incbes 
above the mouth, and poured the water in without 
touching the lips, and they did not miss their mouths 
a single time; at first it was hard for us to keep 
from smiling. When the meal was finished, a por- 
tion of scripture was read in Arabic, while we fol- 
lowed the reading in an English Bible. Afterwards 
I gave the girls a talk on my travels, and at their 
earnest request, some adventures of the T^ndergroimd 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 321 

Railroad, of which they had heard from the boys. 
We next listened to the reading- in English of one 
of the advanced cdasses; though most of them spoke 
every word in plain English, there was a peculiar 
Syrian, yet sweet intonation, that was truly charm- 
ing. As I walked back to the hotel, I was impressed 
with the conviction that the Lord does all things 
well. The Syrians are made to live in Syria, not in 
England or America; they can be made good Syrians, 
and nothing else. As well attempt to make Syrians 
out of Carolinians or Hoosiers* 

To the northward of the city several miles, and 
down the mountain from Brummana, is a celebrated 
place, now becoming world-wide in its importance, 
the ''Gates of the Kings," where the mountain comes 
down in an abrupt cliff to the water. Across the 
outer end of the bridge a pass has been cut and 
worn, by long use, nearly one hundred feet wide, 
with tolerably steep grade. TTirough this pass came 
and went all the conquerors in the olden time, and 
at one place many of them engraved their images, with 
an account of the expeditions, victories and conquests. 
Some have become almost illegible, whilst others are" 
well preserved. The records go l)ack to early Egyp- 
tian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek and Roman per- 
iods; among them is that of Sennacherib. There are 
two that bear the marks of prehistoric time, not less 



322 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

tlian five thousand years ago, and proljably much 
older. 

This ancient pass is not used now; a French com- 
pany has blasted a wide road in the solid rock, at 
the foot of the cliff near the water line, which makes 
a nice drive from the city, but in going we walked 
down the steep side of the mountain to the pike, and 
there took a carnage. In making the descent we 
passed through a Maronite village, seemingly hang- 
ing to the side of the cliff', and the people were cur- 
ious to see the two old men who traveled unarmed 
from the wonderful land of America. Our return 
drive brought us to a point on the bay due west of 
the mission, where a French company have a five 
million dollar contract to build an immense break- 
water to protect the harbor of Beyroot. The com- 
pany ran a railroad five miles up a ravine, where 
the rock formation stands nearly vertical; here great 
masses are blasted and fall to the floor of the ravine 
and break to pieces, so the gTeat derrick can swing 
them into the cars. 

After a time the engineers discovered a break 
or crevice on top of the hill, from four to five hun- 
dred feet above the floor, and conceived the idea of 
making a blast that would shake the whole country. 
They ac^^ordingly worked to that end, and gaA-e out 
word far and wide among the villages that on the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 323 

afternoon of a given date the explosion wonld be 
made. By noon of that day the opposite hill across 
the ravine was covered with thousands of natives 
anxious to see the wonderful event. Several thous- 
and of the spectators were on a level with the mass 
to he exploded, and from four to six hundred feet 
away. AVhen the hour came the signal was given 
by a Ions:, shrill whistle of a locomotive in the valley. 
In an instant an explosion louder than thunder shook 
the hills and mountains for miles around, and the 
whole side of the hill Avas hurled into the air and 
fell two hundred feet to the floor with a deafening 
crash that was more fearful and_ heard further 
than the explosion. It was successful almost be- 
yond the expectation of the engineers, and second to 
none ever made, excepting the one at El Paso, Texas. 
The effect upon the natives cannot be described; they 
stood still as death, seemingly without breathing, for 
nearly half an hour; then a tall chief shouted at the 
top of his voice, waving his turban, ^^Great is Allah!" 
^^Great is Allah!" Then the vast multitude seemed 
moved as if by a whirlwind, and for many hours they 
shouted like men possessed, waved their hands in wild 
gesticulations, danced and swayed in the intense ex- 
<Mtement, and only ceased when overcome by ex- 
haiKstion; then they began to slowly disperse, and 
at sundown all were gone. English residents said this 



324 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

event, with the impression made, even though it were 
never written, would go down in tradition at least 
iive hundred years. Every native was impressed with 
what a wonderful people the Franks (French) were, 
iind French influence was greatly extended. 

During our stop we reviewed our journey, and 
found we had unconsciously learned much about 
•eastern and foreign travel, how to ada])t ourselves 
to change of climate, latitude and elevation. My 
health had steadily improved in spite of constant 
travel, and I can say that invalids need not hesitate 
about traveling in the Eastern country, if they will 
use a little practical judgment about eating and dress- 
ing. We still wore our winter clothes and were 
comfortable; at all times when making extra effort, 
as in climbing hill and mountain, taking long walks, 
w^e pulled off our coats, even though the weather or 
elevation was cool. We did not cumber ourselves 
with much luggage, took nothing but a grip sack that 
we could carry in our hands any^vhere and any time; 
this made us independent of the vexations, extortions 
and deceptions of porters, dragomen, donkey drivers 
and cabmen. The eastern people seem to be a unit 
in defrauding ignorant foreigners, especially those 
who are purse-proud and out on gi-and parade. 

In leaving the mission we felt as though we could 
not bestow too much praise on all those in charge 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 325 

of the schools and the entire e-hureh membership. 
They did all they could to make our stay pleasant, 
and in addition very kindly gave much valuable in- 
formation concerning eastern life, the history and 
traditions of the Mt. Lebanon region, the decipher- 
ing of ancient inscriptions, and other kindred sub- 
jects. We had learned how thousands of moun- 
taineers live in Syria, and the amount of labor it 
has taken through all the centuries to terrace and 
build the walls that are seen everywhere. We could 
better understand the predictions concerning the 
future of all that region, for in our daily walks and 
talks we were alive to all the new and interesting 
surroundings, for we were moving amid the scenes 
of the oldest inhabited land since the flood. 

On the morning of April 5th we bade adieu to 
our kind friends, especially to Theophilus Waldmeier 
and his excellent wife, and the general superinten- 
dents, who had been very kind in giving us infor- 
mation. We took a carriage and drove down to Bey- 
root, where we were to meet four Englishmen and 
six Amiericans. We had parted in Jerusalem; some 
went through by donkeys to Damascus, others up 
the coast by Tyre and Sidon, all to meet at the hotel 
in Beyroot the evening of April 5th to take the 
steamer the next day. At sundown all were in with 
two additions, Scotchmen. We sat up late rehears- 

21 



326 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ing adventures, comparing notes, gmng results of 
observations and impressions, together with the ex- 
pense of the trips. It had cost several of them fifty 
dollars each, none less than thirty, while we had 
spent but twelve dollars and a half apiece, though we 
had traveled the greatest distance. 

On the morning of April (5th, ISO 2, we boarded 
a Russian coasting steamer bound for Athens, (xreece, 
though expecting to be coasting a week among the 
islands. When we engaged oiu- passage, some weeks 
before, we thought the steamer sailed from port to 
port, but when we learned that we were going on 
a coaster we were rather pleased than offended. Our 
passage was paid for the voyage, the accommodations 
were good and most of the passengei-s were tourists, so 
ail settled down for a pleasant time. The weather was 
very fine, so we could be on deck all the time, besides 
many of the party were good historians and the voyage 
was through the most historic portion of the world. 

From Beyroot we sailed north forty miles to 
Tripoli, and stopped one day and night while tak- 
ing on 20,000 boxes of oranges. It was a very in- 
teresting day to the tourists; it gave another oppor- 
tunity to study the Syrian character. The fruit was 
brought out on small sail boats, manned by four to 
six men; each carried two hundred boxes; sometimes 
there were twenty boats waiting their turn to un- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 327 

load. In watching the maneuver of the boat crews, 
their undignihed, selfish character could be seen; 
every one was shouting and giving orders, bent on 
getting the advantage of the others, resulting in a 
constant pushing and bumping among the boats, and 
to vary the scene a few lusty fisticuffs would be 
exchanged. The Arabs and Syrians can make more 
fuss and noise over small things than any other race; 
they have more respect for the law of might than 
that of right. They have antagonized the rest of 
mankind so long that their very nature has become 
vindictive and vicious. During the day there 
was one amusing incident: a negTO commanded 
one boat and seemed to be an acknowledged leader 
among them; he was very noisy and blustering, but 
by some unlucky turn fell headlong into the water; 
his huge form made a small whirlpool as he went 
under, and when he came up sputtering and blow- 
ing he called lustily for help. He was soon 
drawn in, amidst shouts of laughter; he was thor- 
oughly demoralized, his flowing Turkish garment was 
slapping around his limbs, and he looked as though 
he had received a good tonins: down and was less 
demonstrative during the remainder of the day. 

From Tripoli we sailed to the island of Cyprus, 
making a short trip, then sailed along the shore, much 
of the time so near land that we could see the fields. 



328 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

orchards and vineyards, with white cottages and small 
villages on the hillsides and in the narrow valleys 
nmning inland. Everything, as in Egypt, indicated 
that life and property were more secure under Eng- 
lish than Turkish rule. The next island of note 
was Rhcxles, which was once noted in history and 
a Christian stronghold against the conquering Turk, 
and it has sustained many sieges and assaults. It 
is now almost barren, and with but few inhabitants. 
The glass revealed the ruins of many strong walls 
and broken towers, and the hills were bare of trees 
and vegetation; it is one of the greatest ruins of the 
middle ages. AVe passed close under the west shore 
of Patmos, and failed to see a li^dng thing; all seemed 
barren, naked rocks coming down to the water's edge 
in ragged, irregular cliffs; but for its association with 
John's revelation, it would be devoid of interest. 
Many times we passed through narrow channels be- 
tween small islands, and could see the people walking 
-about, the cows and goats grazing on the hills; in 
a few instances we saw fniit on the trees. At one 
time I counted nine islands in sight; islands or the 
main land were always in view during the daytime. 
Erom the ship's log-book I drew our winding path, 
:and it was a marvel of intricacy and showed the per- 
fect knowledge of the pilot. 

We ran down the long bay to Smyrna, where we 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 329 

stopped a day and part of the night. Most of the^ 
party landed and made a sh«n-t run of forty miles 
by rail to the ruins of Ephesus, bnt it was a cool, 
rainy day, and the trip was not very satisfactory. 
Ephesns, like Jericho, is almost all gone; it is diffi- 
cult to trace the old wall and to locate the gTeat 
temple of Diana. Five miles inland from the present 
landing are solid, massive walls, showing - where the 
harbor was before the great earthquake changed the 
coast line for many miles. Smyrna is a beautiftil 
city of over 200,000 inhabitants, built on the side 
of a hill sloping far back from the bay. It has been 
destroyed and rebuilt so often that there are few 
remains of its old edifices; even the last portion of 
the old wall was being taken down to give building 
room. It is European in look and character, being 
rather Italian in outline. ^N'early half the people 
are Europeans, and the business seems to be largely 
in their hands; here we saw a few drays and hacks 
in lively competition with the camel, donkey and 
porter. Upon continuing our cruise back to open 
water, the cruise was continued through many narrow 
channels and beautiful bays. At all the stops the 
Greek began to predominate among the people, and 
European dress prevailed, with a small percentage of 
Albanian costume (a man in petticoats). 

In seven days we reached Athens, and no week 



330 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

of travel had been so full of interest, nor had any 
land or water called up busier memories of past thous- 
ands of yeare. AVe passed many battlefields and 
points where naval engagements had occurred where 
the fate of nations and the world had been decided. 
Many of the scenes from the steamer's deck were 
truly inspii-ing; we could see islands covered with 
ruins, great sea-walled harbors, without even a fish- 
ing boat to relieve the desolate solitude. The clear, 
blue sky, the wami spring weather, the deep blue 
of the water, all united in intensifying the contrasts, 
and in clothing things with light, life and beauty. 

We landed at Piraeus, the port of Athens, in 
the afternoon, and took a carriage in preference to 
rail, driving, over historical ground, among green 
fields and orchards, seven miles to the city, which 
was almost as interesting as Jerusalem, and had nearly 
as much of the world's history associated with it. We 
started at once to walk through the beautiful, modern 
Athens; we strolled about until night through the 
broad, clean streets, into the public halls, over their 
marble floors, among the beautiful mansions, and 
stopped by the way to look into the faces of the people, 
so as to fix the national type in the memor\\ Even 
when twilight came it gave an additional interest — 
that peculiar inspiration that ]\Irs. Hemans, Byron, 
and others seem to have caught while moving amid 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 331 

the same scenes. AVhen we entered the dining 
room at the hotel we were astonished and de- 
lighted to see over the door in large letters: 
"No smoking allowed in the dining room." 
It was the one hotel on all the continent of 
Eurj)oe that we saw where there was not more 
or less smoking, not only in the dining room, but at 
the fashionable 'Table d' bote/' "where wine, wit 
and wisdom has free course." AVe visited many of 
the most celebrated hotels in eyerj capitol of Eu- 
rope, and we found smoking in every dining room, 
and wine and strong drink on every table, hence our 
surprise to find this prohibition in little Greece. 

Next morning at an early hour we were stand- 
ing amid the splendid ruins of the Acropolis. The 
first emotions and impressions were similar to those 
at Baalbec — they were too deep for words, overwhelm- 
ing and almost oppressive in intensity — for on that 
spot I had realized the attainment of one of the 
fondest, brightest dreams of early life. I had seen 
Baalbec in its fallen grandeur, and now saw the 
second wonder of the world in the grandeur and 
beauty of its fall. As. I walked among and over 
the hidden pillars and arches and looked up to the 
broken walls, a new light came to my mind which 
gave me a higher, clearer understanding of why the 
Lca-d chose the Greeks to be third great empire to 



332 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

prepare the world for the fifth and last. A people 
who could unite so much of art, exquisite beauty, 
impressive gTandeur in one temple, were a people 
who would stamp the spirit of their guests upon the 
world in characters that would not die. To one ac- 
quainted with the events of history, there are few 
places more interesting than Athens and Greece, for 
the- fate of civilization, humanity and refinement 
seemed centered there, and radiated outward through 
all the lands included in prophecy, and into all the 
fields of science and discovery. 

To describe the ruined temple on the Acropolis 
would be beyond my ability, for it is different from 
anything seen elsewhere, so there is no standard of 
comparison. As we now saw^ it we were almost glad 
that it was a ruin, for as such its beauty cannot 
change — the marble is imperishable. We can easily 
picture in our minds how it looked in the glory of 
its perfection, but when thus perfect its beauty could 
and did fail and fall, but in its fallen grandeur it 
will be there for all time. From any point of the 
ruin the view is charming and grand, and from its 
loftiest dome, when Athens was in her prime, it must 
have been tenfold more inspiring. We stood in front 
of the temple ruin and looked down a hundred feet, 
and a few hundred feet to the right saw Mars Hill, 
a place second in interest to Calvary. Upon leaving 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 3B3 

the Acropolis, we ascended the worn stolie steps to 
the top of Mars Hill, now a naked rock not an acre 
in extent, but it shows that a building was once fas- 
tened on it by iron bolts to the rocks. AVhile stand- 
ing there full of thronging memories, the same voices 
that sounded in my ear at Jerusalem spoke again: 
-What might have been." When Paul stood on that 
rock 1,800 years ago, Athens was the scientific cen- 
ter of the known world; the phibsophers of all lands 
came there to learn wisdom. There were in that day 
30,000 shrines in and around the great city where 
religious offerings were given to the multitude of 
gods. There was one shrine to the living God, to 
them ''Unknown." When Paul preached jto the 
assembled philosophers the ''Unknown God," it was 
to the wise ''Greeks' foolishness." It was while I was 
calling this to mind and asking the questions, "Where 
BOW are the 30,000 shrine>i, where all the wis- 
dom of the philosophers, where now^ is Athens, where 
is Paul and his God?" that the voice came; "Had 
Jerusalem received Christ, what would she have been 
to-day? Had Athens accepted the gospel preached 
by Paul, what might Athens have been to-day? In- 
stead, what are they to-day? Athens, without a 
promise; Jerusalem, still trodden down. What of 
the wise Greeks who laughed at Paul?" 

From Athens we sailed in a good steamer for 



334 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Constantinople, another coaster, which took us again 
amongst beautiful islands, around historic headlands, 
past low, green shores, and over waters made mem- 
orable bv naval conflicts, passed the head of the cele- 
brated battle scene of Salamis, and one could imagine 
the fearful conflict raging in the narrow strait be- 
tween the great fleets of Greece and Persia, with 
Xerxes, the haughty king, watching the destruction 
of his fleet, with no power to succor or to save. We 
passed the Dardanelles in the afternoon of a bright, 
still day, and the interest became intensified every 
mile, for each foot of land and water had been the 
scene of thrilling events. The guide books were in 
demand among the tourists; all were aglow in calling 
memories of the past; quotations from history, poetry, 
.romance and tradition were uttered with shouts of 
delight. Here the hurrying scenes of centuries 
seemed crowded into so small a space that the mind 
could comprehend and imagination have free play. 

On that spot the Persian thousands landed, and 
on the plain out yonder "The glad earth drank their 
blood." Just over there the ''Grecian phalanx hewed 
its dreadful, way 'mid that wild carnival of death. '^ 
There was where the Roman legions first set foot in 
Asia. Over beyond that blue hill ''Cross and cres- 
cent both went down in the dark vintage of the 
grave." The enthusiasm went on as successive points 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 385 

were passed, and wlien we came to the place of the 
wonderfiil pontoon bridge the interest was intense 
among the soldier element of the party. About 
night we entered the sea of Marmora, and afterward 
all were ready for rest, at least rest of mind, for few 
places are more exciting than this crossing place of the 
world. 

It was early morning when we came into the Bos- 
phorns, and were in sight of the Golden Horn. Every- 
thing seemed to nnite in giving a peculiar glow of 
beauty and splendor to the marvelous scene. Towers, 
minarets, domes, spires and gilded palaces glittered in 
the early sunlight; the wide expanse of the Pera 
rising from the water's edge was all aglow with light 
Stamboul, with its lofty minarets, partly in the shade, 
Avas beautifully outlined on the blue sky beyond the 
hills. Scutari seemed like a quiet resting place 
nestled among gardens and groves. The low rumble 
of the great city came floating out on the morn- 
ing air as the soft, light mist from the water floated 
away, making a picture not to be forgotten, for a 
finer one is rarely seen in any clime: but alas! few 
are more delusive. 

With eager feet and great enthusiasm, I stepped 
into the boat to make the landing, and sprang ashore 
more like a boy than an old man, anxious to enter 
what promised to be a paradise of loveliness. But 



336 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

alas! alas! when I looked around into the faces of 
the rushing throng of sti'ange beings that sur- 
rounded me my enthusiasm was gone, all my 
fond anticipations were blasted. It seemed as 
though the concentrated vindictiveness of all the 
earth had been poured out and infused into 
the population of Constantinople, that the essence 
of all earth's wickedness had united there. I shud- 
der to think and realize that volcano of malice and 
hate that was there, ready to explode at any time 
without a moment^s notice. Up to that day I had not 
felt any sense of insecurity, fear or danger, but then 
and there I did; a feeling of unrest took possession 
of me. The result was the stay was shortened to 
two days instead of a week. 

During that time, however, we saw much of 
the city and environs; saw the people and their habits; 
in fact, we made good use of the opportunity to take 
the last lesson of eastern life. AVe climbed the old 
Venetian tower, built five hundred years ago, to get 
k mind picture of the vast scene, which was on a 
scale of magiiificence that will never be forgotten. 
The whole city was mapped out at our feet, while 
the blue hills extended beyond the reach of the eye 
on the European side. Over in Asia, low hills and 
far off mountains formed a charming background, 
while the bright waters of the Straight and Horn were 



OF ADD] SON COFFIN. 887 

sparkling in the sun. 1 sliuukl be glad if the im- 
pression of tlie citv could pass into oblivion, and the 
one from the tower alone remembered; yet the stop in 
Constantinople paid richly, and to one with stronger 
nerves a longer stay would be enjoyed. 

The i^turn trip to London lay through Roumalia, 
Bulgaria, Servia, Hungary, Austria, G-ermany, Belgium 
and northern France, across Europe from east to west. 
As we wished to see the country in passing, we stopped 
each night, and always took the slow local trains, in 
some cases going at the speed of only twelve miles an 
hour. Much of the time we could see the people at 
work in the fields and gardens, and had a good view of 
the kind of implements they used, the harness of the 
horses, carts, cattle, and little farms marked by white 
stones at the corners. We could look into the back 
yard of many homes, and w^atch every day domestic 
life untrammeled. In this way we saw and leanied 
much from the practical side. Much skill is evinced 
in economizing time, labor and space in the densely 
populated districts. In some places' every wall, fence, 
sides of buildings and tops of out houses were covered 
with vines, and stakes were driven in the ground on 
which were boxe^ with vegetables gTO^\dng in them. 
It seemed literally cultivating the aii*. 

We stopped one day or more at several noted 
places, Belgrade, Buda-Pesth, Vienna, "Wells, I^urera- 



4^8 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

berg, Prankfort on the Main, Bohn, Brussels, etc., etc. 
This gave desired opportunity to study humanity at 
home, in the great centers of business where national 
characteristics were highly developed. Oft times I 
stood for hours without weariness and watched the tide 
of life go by; looked into the strange faces, and read 
their hopes, fears, aspirations and ambitions when they 
did not have their masks on, for nine people out of ten 
do not wear the mask of restraint when rushing to and 
from business; therefore, that is the time to read their 
minds and the secrets of the heart. Xo people in 
Europe are a greater wonder than the Hunns. They 
are a distinct race, strangei-s in a strange land, holding 
their possessions by right of conquest, without know- 
ing from whence they sprang in the distant past, but 
they have come to Hungary to stay. 

The whole trip from Constantinople to London 
was a continued surprise. I was not prepared to see 
so much beautiful country, or so many places that 
would remind me of home and native land. The 
greatest astonishment was the broad plains of Hungary 
and eastern Austria; they were very much like the 
finest parts of Illinois, Iowa and IN'ebraska, equally as 
fertile and under far better cultivation. Then in 
western Austria and in Germany there were rural 
scenes that called to mind eastern Pennsylvania, cen 
tral Ohio and Indiana, with double the population. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 839 

The vallev of the Danube was luneh like some of our 
beautiful American valleys. It is underestimated by 
most writers because less known; it is very fertile. 
While the Rhine and its valley is picturesque when 
measured by European rivers, yet it is very much over- 
estimated. The Columbia river and its tributaries 
have more gTandeur and real he^iuty than all the rivers 
of Euro])e. The Hudson is as tine as the Rhine; the 
Kanawha has far mare oTand mountain scenery. Th^ 
valley of the Yellowstone is much more interesting, 
especially to the scientist, than any European region. 
"We must not attempt to measure Europe by American 
yard sticks, or we shall do Europe injustice. The Lord 
made Europe a small place, and it is not its fault that 
it is so. Pile all the mountains in Europe in one heap 
and the Sierra Nevada and Coast range would double 
the size; so it would be with many comparisons. 
Thoughtless Americans make themselves offensive and 
contemptible by constantly refering to the size of our 
country, ^vhile shrewd Europeans measure them by the 
size of their folly and pass them by. That class of 
Americans are like some of the English who ai-e al- 
ways talking about old John Bull, London, the Queen, 
etc., etc. 

It would take much time to des(n*ibe the many 
local points on our way,. Belgrade was interesting on 
account of its past in the fearful conflicts that took 



340 LIFE AiND TRAVELS 

place in and aruund it, during the long war with the 
Turk when he Hvat entered Europe. Buda-Pesth is a 
beautiful city, the capital of the wonderful Hunn. 
Vienna is one of the gTeatest cities of the world. It 
has many points common to other cities, but there are 
portions that date back more than a thousand years; 
when every house was built with thick walls for de- 
fense, and the streets so narrow that heavy stones could 
be hurled from the windows and house tops upon an 
enemy below. As life and property became more se- 
<^ure, the houses were less massive, and when gun- 
powder and hrearms were invented the construction of 
the houses assumed the modern form. This gradual 
progress is peculiar to the older portion of Vienna^ 
while the city, as seen today, is one that has all the 
interesting things of art, inventions and science that 
we see in the great cities of the world. We stopped at 
Wells to see a small town that has changed but little in 
five hundred years. Many of the houses are one story 
at the side, and three stories at the end, with a gable 
to the street. The peo^ple move about as though they 
were dreaming and belonged to the past. 

Nuremberg is a remarkable place and very old. 
Its citadel dates back to the fifth century, and many 
buildings are on foundations laid in the tw^elfth cen- 
tury; most of the old w^all is still standing in a fair 
stateof preservation. We visited amarket in an oblong 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 341 

irregular open space, which was kept by women. The 
stalls and tables seemed to be permanent fixtures and 
the market for all time. Many of the women had their 
knitting and sewing, or were mending clothes, making 
baskets; in fact, there were various kinds of handicraft 
going on while tending the stalls. The men came and 
went as purchasers, but there was not a man to be seen 
as a salesman; most of the women were middle aged, 
or over, and all seemed to be settled in business for life. 
It was a general market where all home wants could be 
supplied. 

Frankfort on the Main river is one of the in- 
teresting places for tourists to stop. It is especially 
historic, for it goes back to the days of Roman con- 
quest and defeat; but, as a city of today, it is best 
known for its zoological and botanical gardens and 
museum. Though not as large as some, they were as 
fine as any we bad seen. They had the most perfect 
specimen of a white polar bear that I ever saw, also a 
pair of ^ew Zealand ostriches, the only ones we found 
in all our trip. If the tourist wishes to gain informa- 
tion and solid knowledge, Frankfort is the place to 
get it. 

Bonn has its peculiar features as a city, but to me 
it had a sad interest. A niece was buried there and I 
wanted to see her grave. The cemetery where she was 
interred was a new one, a mile out of the city among 

22 



B42 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

broad green fields, and was kept in nice order. I did 
not understand a word of German, yet when I wrote 
"Mary Cofiin" on a card, tbe woman in charge gave 
mean earnest, kind look, and then led me directly to the 
grave. By signs I told her my relationship to the 
buried one, and she extended her hand in deep sym- 
pathy, and pointed to the grave as being alone ; mutely 
saying, '-Alone among strangers." She was past 
middle life, yet active and strong, and had a mother 
heart and knew how to sympathize with others. When 
I turned away from the lowly tomb, 1 thought that I 
too, might fall by the wayside and possibly fill a 
stranger's grave, but I have the picture of Mary 
Cofirin's sepulchre and the green fields around as dis- 
tinct as when standing there. One pleasing thing at 
Bonn is its long shady avenues of grand spreading 
trees, that impart a look of rest and (piietude that 
leaves a pleasant memory. 

Wlaen we entered Belgium, there was a marked 
change in the condition of things everywhere. More 
men were in siglit than in any other country. Out in 
the fields, on the highways, in the towns and cities 
were many young and middle aged men. This gave 
a new aspect to domestic life. This is owing to the 
miJitary systenj not being so rigid and merciless as in 
otljer states. Conseipiently there are more men, in 
pic portion to the population, who are producers. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 843 

1 litTcfore. fewer old men, women and (diildreii were 
ont in the iields, fewer yonnu- ^irls were compelled to 
do menial labor. There 'was a more eheerfnl look in 
the faces of the laborers; few mothers were seen carry- 
ing small infants and burdens at the same time. The 
littlp farms and gardens were better cultivated. In 
fact, every tiling and everybody had a bright look. In 
the city of I^rnssels I was astonished to see over shop 
doors names familiar at home. There did not seem to 
be a name in Brussels but that could be found in In- 
diana j)olis and Cincinnati, and it seemed like getting 
back among home folks to read the many signs along 
the streets. 

From Brussels we made a (juick run to London, 
crossing the channel at Dover. In a few days we 
found our friends, Mary C. Woody and Lorena 
Reynolds, and had a glad meeting with them. 
They had seen nuich of English life, and held 
religious service with the various missions in London 
and other cities. AVhen we gave in detail our travels, 
k seemed almost past belief. AVe had accomplished 
far more than the average tourist, and to my com- 
panion, John Van Lindley, it did appear wonderful 
that we should be able to see and do so much among 
strangers, unarmed and without escort. 



CHAPTER TEN. 



Seeing London — London Yearly Meeting of Friends' 
Church. 

We were in the grand old city once more, with 
nianv new ideas, and a wider range of thought, and in- 
creased respect for England's true greatness. We pro- 
posed to settle down to regular work in seeing London 
and the live millions of people inside its corporate 
limits; but it would take many months to write up all 
that would be interesting to an American, besides it is 
an every day occurrence to see letters written V)y en- 
thusiastic tourists from London, who know but little 
of their own land, save their own state and home circle. 
To such, London looks very different from what it dofjs 
to one who has seen other lands; therefore, their ac- 
counts are highly colored and misleading. We began 
by taking long rides on top of the double-decked omni- 
buses and tram (street) cars. Thus we were at least 
twelve feet above the pavement, and could look down 
on the great throngs of vehicles and thousands of pe- 
destrians that crowd the sidewalks. Sometimes we 
would ride out on one line three to five miles, then 
(344) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 345 

change to another going at right angles, and ride some 
miles in that direction, then go on foot a mile or two, 
then ride again, always circling so as to be home by 
night. Some days we would ride twenty or thirty 
miles. Then again we would take the under gTound 
and overhead railroads, and travel to all the prominent 
places, scarcely ever returning on the same line to 
our starting point, Broad street station. We had 
chosen this because from there we could radiate all 
over the city and converge from all places. We ex- 
plored this vast city many days. We went to the 
ijritish museum. South Kensington museum, St. Paul, 
Westminster, Tower of London, Greenwich, The 
Strand, Xew Garden, Zoological Garden, Prince Al- 
bert's monument, London bridge, the wonderful 
docks, meat market, fruit market. Crystal palace and 
at least fifty other celebrated places, institutions, col- 
lections and exhibits. 

The British and South Kensington museums are 
the finest of the kind to be seen anywhere. Prepared 
specimens of every animal, beast, bird, reptile, fish and 
insect in the world can be seen, together with fossil re- 
mains from all lands. In Kew Garden we found speci- 
mens of plants, vegetables, trees and flowers from 
every corner of the earth, either under glass, or in the 
open air. In the Zoological garden we saw every liv- 
ing thing that can be kept alive in the climate of 



346 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

England, . In the great library may be seen a collec- 
tion of books^ rolls, manuscripts, teiTa cotta tile and 
tablets in eyery langiiage liying or dead, among which 
the student may, spend a life and not learn the half. 

In Westminster Al)bey we saw the resting place 
af saint and sinner^ the gifted and the great, the base 
and the yile, monsters, murderers, tyrants alongside of 
martyrs, philanthropists and Christian statesmen, with 
all their names written <m the roll of fame. 

In this way we spent nearly three weeks before 
starting on our second great tour, and also awaiting 
the coming of London Yearly Meeting of Friends' 
Church. This annual assembly of Friends, or Quak- 
ers, is looked upon as the highest authority in the 
church throughout the world, and a report of its de- 
liberations is receiyed with great interest by all- the 
membership. Its regular session began May 18th, 
1892, at Deyonshire House in London, and no event 
in my life was looked forward to with much I'lore 
eagerness. 

When I first entered the room where it was coti- 
vened it was with a certain feeling of awe and rever- 
ence, for I had formed a very high ideal of the wis- 
dom and piety of that almost divinely inspired body of 
Friends. The veneration that filled my young heart, 
when I saw and heard Anna Braithwaite preach at 
^T^Tew Garden, X. C, in 1828, had lived with undimin- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 347 

islied fresliiies8, and that feeling had been kept alive 
through all the years, by the frequent visits of English 
Friends to America. When my emotions toned down, 
and 1 looked around, my ideal dream began to fade, 
and a feeling of disappointment dimmed my eyes with 
tears. When the reaction passed and I began slowly 
surveying my surroundings and drawing conclusions, 
I perceived the large room was tolerably well filled 
with serious, solid thoughtful, reverent looking men 
much above the average of those I had been meeting 
in traveling through the city and country, but not 
divinely grand and noble, as seen in my ideals of early 
life. 

■The business was conducte<l in much the same 
way as in American Yearly Meetings thirty years ago. 
The delegates were called in regular order, a])sentecs 
were noted and reason for their absence given. Cor- 
respondence from other Yearly Meetings of the world 
w^as read, and after the reading: of each epistle, a com- 
mittee to reply to it was appointed, and the committee 
was instructed as to special messages, or information 
wanted. When the epistle from Iowa Yearly Meeting- 
was read there was quite a diversity of feeling and 
opinions. Many disapproved of lowa^s innovations 
and departure from the long standing usages of the 
church. Some of the speakers seemed ready to cease 
correspondence with that Yearly Meeting, and the dis- 



348 ' • LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ciissictn was spirited and earnest, but the clear, sound 
reasoning of the more charitable and liberal, pre- 
vailed, and the discussion closed mth good feeling and 
harmony. But later on when the request from Iowa 
came for a delegation to be sent from England to es- 
tablish a new Yearly meeting at Xewburg in Oregon, 
the controversy was revived, and another spirited dis- 
cussion followed. Some of the more conservative were 
ready to refuse recognition to the new meeting, but 
again the clear, cool, descernment of superior minds 
arose above the narrow conservatism: all were at 
length willing to yield to the judgment of the mor*^ 
spiritually minded, and harmony again prevailed. 

I had no credentials from my home, as I did not 
start from there on my trip, but Dr. Mendenhall and 
the faculty of Guilford college, X. (\. had kindly 
given me a general pass. After the business of the 
meeting had gone on for some time an usher came to 
me and asked if I had credentials. I replied that I had, 
which seemed to satisfy him for the time, but after- 
wards he said the clerk must see them. This T com- 
plied \nth, but declined to have them publiclv read. 
American Yearly Meetings had long since drifted 
from this exclusiveness, &o the event was a surprise, 
though kindly meant and kindly done. 

When the triennial reports from the Quarterly 
Meetings were read, the wide and varied fields of labor 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. ♦ 849 

in which Friends were actively engaged were apparent. 
They seemed to be taking part in all great movements 
to save, elevate, convert and refine humanity, not only 
at home, but in all lands throughout the world. It 
was easy to discern the internal condition of the 
church; an antagonism in modes of work, but not in 
spirit, or purpose. In the reports there were com- 
plaints of negligence in attending religious meetings, 
remissness in minor duties and of indulging too 
much in worldly ambition, and like Americans favor- 
ing departures and innovations from the good old con- 
servative ways, to launch out into the broad field of 
liberalism, which to some seemed to bode evil to the 
church and C^hristianity. During the consideration of 
this subject the real depth and breadth of the won- 
derful spiritual life of the meeting \vas seen and heard 
in its full gTandeur and beauty. In spite of narrow- 
minded conservatism, zeal without knowledge, stereo- 
typed formality, the evidence of a pure, refined spirit- 
uality was manifest, and in the end hushed a factious 
opposition into silence, and it seemed that a soft,sweet 
influence covered the assembly with a mantle of love. 
One of the speakers presented a grand thought, which 
was that the Gospel of Christ contained truths that the 
highest attainments of modern thought and intellect- 
ual insight could not comprehend, that we of this gen- 
eration are yet seeing through a glass darkly. Th<^ 



850 ' LIFE AND TRAVELS 

liigiiest spiritual life is but the dawning of a far gi-and- 
er enlightenment yet to come. The discussion was 
truly a tine spiritual feast, and gave evidence of a pure 
li^dng faith, which marked a day of progress toward a 
higher triumph in Quakerism throughout the entire 
church. 

The forenoon of the 20th was given for meetings 
for worship in Devonshire House and other places. 
The manner in which the meetings were held, carried 
me back to Indiana and Western Yearly Meetings 30 
years ago. They began with a hush of profound 
silence, that called up the memories of childhood, 
when the venerable, yea, to me almost divine form of 
Xathan Hunt sat at the head of i^orth Carolina Yearly 
Meeting. There was no singing, no introduction of 
subjects, no preliminary remarks, no expectant look of 
curiosity, or anticipation, no reading a portion of Scrip- 
ture, l)ut the ministers moved right out at once with 
their subjects. The style of oratory was deliberate, 
smooth and fluent, very impressive and sublime. Thero 
were no fiery, lofty flights of eloquence, and impetu- 
ous enthusiasm, as seen in our western country, no as- 
sentive responses, no emphatic aniens, nor encouraging 
words from the audience; all were motionless, pro- 
foundly still, and reverentially attentive. As the min- 
ister deepened and widened in his discourse, it seemed 
as though great waves of thrilling, but silent ecstacy 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 351 

would sweep over the assembly, like the wind across a 
golden held of grain. Such meetings the younger gen- 
eration in our northwest have not seen, nor could they 
- rightly understand them if seen, for western life has 
drifted with the current of events, and away from 
silent meetings and former usage, so far and so rapidly 
that the past will soon be forgotten and be known no 
more. 

When the regular business of the meeting was re- 
sumed the report of the relief committee to the famine 
stricken provinces of Russia was read and the explana- 
tions, and account of the terrible sutfering was deeply 
interesting and instructive. The amount of relief had 
been large and etlected much good in a quiet way. I 
had read accounts of relief associations, about which 
nuich had been said, but their work was small when 
compared with that of Friends, of which the outside 
world knew nothing. The reports from Friends in 
Australia and New Zealand were full of interesting 
facts, especially to iVmericans, who are accustomed to 
long distances. In explaining how, and where Friends 
were situated, two meetings were as widely separated 
as London and New York, yet the future of the church 
in that far-oif land was full of hope and promise. It 
was much like our great west 35 years ago, before the 
spirit of expansion and evangelizing was infused into 
Iowa Yearly Meeting. A far grander residt tlian 



352 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

came to Iowa will come to London Yearly Meeting, 
wben she receives the outpouring of the spirit, and the 
call to go forth into the field of the world, now white 
unto the harvest. 

The amount of business transacted by the meet- 
ing each day was a surprise to strangers. Friends have 
taken a part in all the charitable work of the empire, 
such as schools, homes, relief associations, home and 
foreign missions. They also have a care of trusts, 
gifts, endowments, relief funds, rents and leases, and 
many and varied other things not known to us. Much 
of the business was done through judicious committees, 
yvho give the subjects entrusted to them their careful 
examination and mature thought; then they embody 
their judgment in their report, with propositions, or 
suggestions, as they may deem necessary; the reports 
are generally received and entered on the minutes 
without discussion; in this way the routine business is 
easily and rapidly disposed of. The thorough business 
training nearly all English Friends have enables them 
to manage the many interests in harmony and dispatch. 

The meeting held in Devonshire House on the 
Sabbath was very different from public meetings in 
America. There was nothing to distinguish it from 
joint meetings of business, but the absence of business. 
There was but little difference in numbers, or in any 
other particular feature. The sermons and prayers 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 858 

were delivered with measured precision, and reveren- 
tial decorum. All the zeal and tire seen in America 
on such occasions were lacking; it was not so edifying 
as the meeting held for the membership alone on a 
previous occasion. The meetings did not seem to pro- 
duce a single ripple in the tide of life outside the house; 
a few passers by would stop a moment to look, then 
pa^as on with no further thought of what was going on 
within. This was in striking contrast to the way 
nearly all American meetings are looked upon by the 
comunities where they are located. Western Yearly 
Meetings especially are regarded by all the neighbor- 
hood as one of the sensational events of each year; tens 
of thousands of people attend on Sunday and excur- 
sion rates are given by the railroads for the meetings. 
To see the w<3rld-honored London Meeting so little 
heeded and seemingly unknown was not only a sur- 
prise, but a disappointment. 

The business sessions of one day were taken up in 
reading and considering the reports of the Home Mis- 
sionary committee. They were long and full of in- 
terest ; the lengthy discussions gave a clear insight into 
the varied opinions, preferences, prejudices, hopas and 
fears of the membership. The subje<^t was opened by 
what might be called the opposition, who endeavored 
to show that the usage, modes of procedure, manner 
of work and teac^hing of the committee and its workers 



35i LIFE AND TRAVELS 

would leadj was leading, directly to a ''paid ininistrv 
and ecclesiastical bondage." Many, probably more 
than half of the speakers of the opposition, repeatedly 
referred to Iowa Yearly Meeting's unpardonable de- 
parture from Friends' sacred principles and usages; 
this seemed to be a favorite weapon to combat innova-' 
tions. To me their ignorance of the real situation in 
Iowa was painful, yet I could think kindly of them 
when calling to mind how impossible it was for 
Friends living in London and England to understand 
the surroundings of the membership in the limits of 
Iowa Yearlv Meeting: even should they go there they 
would not comprehend what pioneer life is, and has 
been, unless they resided there two years or more. 

When the advocates and defenders of the home 
mission work came forward with their justification and 
clear, solid, ( 'hristian lil>eral arguments, it was a relief 
to every missionary. Their representation of the 
claims of the great work was so calm and couAdncing, 
and at the same time so kindly, that all opposition was 
finally hushed into submission. That all might be 
satisfied with the onward movement, it was determined 
that a conference of delegates from subordinate meet- 
ings should be called, where the subject of missions of 
all kinds might be examined and dis^^ussed apart from 
other church business. The Quarterly Meetings were 
directed to sen<l delegates, and the Home Missionary 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 355 

coniiiiittec was made a part of the conference, riiis 
seemed to calm the troubled waters, and the meeting 
adjourned nn(k'r a feeling of thankfulness that all had 
ended so well. 

To study the hearts of those attending the meet- 
ing, J spent some time each day in walking about 
among them, and in sitting down and looking into the 
faces that were passing, while listening to their kindly 
greetings and pleasant talk, I studied their bearing 
one towards another. 1 had learned much in this way 
before the discussion of home missions came up. That 
debate opened several doors to my secret study, and 
before the meeting closed I had gained a valuable les- 
son in humanity. My first drill in this kind of study 
was among the ignorant slaves of the south, but this 
one was among the highest civilization of the world. 
If I should draw conclusions it would be that a crisis 
will come in London Yearly Meeting, which if passed 
successfully will be glad tidings to England and the 
world. Through Friends there will be a revolution 
brought about that will send peace and not a sword ;o 
the ends of the earth, and the Gospel will be ])reached 
to the poor, not only in sinful London, l)ut in all the 
r'v'-.es of the world. 

The most remarkable and astonishing statement 
made (hiring the meeting was the unquestioned one 
that there were thousads of heathen, pure and simiile, 



356 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

within an hour's walk of that meeting. One speaker 
used the words "ahnost savages." It was so astound- 
ing to me, that I took note of the direction indicated, 
an,] subsequently visited that part of the city and 
found it really awful and horrible in suffering, pov- 
erty, degradation, starvation, sin, shame and untold 
c'ime. A place to make the soul sick, probably the 
darkest spot on earth; it would be hard to ovoj'draw 
the I'icture or exaggerate its fearful misery. 

'v^Tien the subject of corresponding with other 
Yearly Meetings was under consideration, the discus- 
sion took a wide range, and was not only surprising, but 
almost startling. Some of the members proposed (ior- 
rc?ponding with all bodies of people in America call- 
ing themselves Friends. Others suggested issuing one 
epistle for all the meetings of the United Stares, re- 
taining Canada as a colonial meeting. Iowa was again 
reviewed and severely criticised, in one or two in- 
stances almost amounting to persistent misrepresenta- 
tion, but as on previous occasions, the clear spiritual 
discernment, sound practical wisdom of the liberal el fo- 
ment of the meeting prevailed, and it was decided not 
to vary from former usages. 

In discussing the report on schools, and the edu- 
cation of the children of artisans and members in lim- 
ited circumstances, a very strange revelation appeared 
behind thescene,as viewed bv anv American mind and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 357 



''!'!! 



convictions. It was evident tliat Engiish Friends w 
full of the spirit of class distinction, yet all unconscious 
of the fact. This stands as a barrier in their wa} to 
wider usefulness. The poor see, feel and resent that, 
spirit. As I sat listening I inwardly exclaimed, "Oh! 
that they could see themselves as others see them, then 
what wonderful things they could do. Heathenism 
would disappear in London and in England; a might- 
ier 'power than the Salvation Army would move upon 
the hearts of the fallen." 

Another ])ublic meeting was held on the 25th, 
but it differed from the previous ones only in the char- 
acter of the sermons; in depth of real spiritual life I 
had rarely heard their equal, delivered as they were 
before an audience educated and trained by a higher 
civiiization, the result was as grand and inspiring upon 
the listener as our finest outpouring of lofty, fiery elo- 
(pience upon an audience of hardy pioneers. 

London Yearly Meeting is a study, for its influ- 
ence upon England and the English speaking people 
everywhere is out of proportir»n to the number of its 
church membership. Why it should be so is not easily 
understood until one has attended its annual gather- 
ing and studied well its inner life. As I looked and 
listened T saw such evidence of grand spiritual light, 
that T felt almost like lx»wing the knee in reverence 
before it and its achievements, but before words could 

23 



358 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

be framed into fitting speech, suddenly I was startled 
by the falling of a shadow of blind devotion and rev- 
erence for empty forms and usages. In listening to 
the expression of opinions relative to the many good 
works in which the membership wiis engaged, I could 
understand why Friends' Monthly Meetings estab- 
lished in the wilderness had all the essential elements 
within themselves of civil government and spiritual 
life. It was easy to see from whence came William 
Penn's wisdom, bv which he gave the only model .i>ov- 
ernment the world has seen since the law was ^iven to 
Moses. We can also realize the true grandeur of 
England's higher attainments towards a Christian 
f'ivilization. In the midst of my joy and gladness' 
another shadow of bigotry and prejudice fell and 
checked my enthusiasm. So we find it in many other 
things. It seems that the highest civilization and 
spiritual growth is often cumbered by human weak- 
ness. 



CHAPTER ELEVEN. 



London to the Land of the Midnight Sun — Russia — 
Across Europe — Italy, Switzerland France, Spain 
and Portugal — Back to London. 

Four weeks passed so pleasantly in London sight- 
seeing and at our quiet home that we were almost un- 
conscious of the lapse of time. Our kind host, John B. 
Watts, and his .three bright, charming daughters, and 
noble son, had done their best to make our stay both 
pleasant and restful. Their home was in a quiet part 
of the city, and possessed a rare treasure in a beautiful 
green yard behind the house, shut in by trees and 
vines. On this green we spent many delightful even- 
ings. My friend, John Van Lindley, joined the young 
people in their sports, while our host and I talked of 
far-oif lands, and of life in London. I could entertain 
him with stories of travel, and he instructed me in 
English history and England's growth, and together 
w^e discussed the all-absorbing topics of the day. The 
subjects which claimed much attention were title to 
real estate, ground rents, ninety-nine year leases, en- 
tails, house privileges, etc. The close of May warned 

(359) 



360 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

US that we must be off on our second tour while health 
and oj^portunity offered. 

At 3 p. in. June 3d we took train for Xorwich^ 
there took steamer for Piotterdam, and arrived the next 
morning. We rode through the beautiful tree-planted 
citv and its profusion of flowers, then took cars for 
Amsterdam. The ride through the rural country was 
especiallv charming, when contrasted with the endless 
brick walls and stone pavements of the great city. 
The whole country is intersected by large canals, in 
which, in many places, the water stands above sea level, 
but a few inches, while all the country is sub-divided 
by small canals and ditches, most of them several feet 
below sea level, which stand full of water, the surplus 
being constantly lifted up into the large ones by thou- 
sands of huge windmills. As far as the eye can see 
there is an unbroken expanse of green fields and 
avenues of trees along the large canals. From among 
small clumps of trees and vines arose the chimney tops 
of the grand old Dutch homes; the fields and farms are 
subdivided and bounded by ditches, which serve as 
fences, and for highways, as much of the travel is 
done by water. Strangers are astonished at the num- 
ber of small boats seen on hand at all places. They 
are used instead of wheeled vehicles, and are of all 
sizes, shapes and artistic construction. 

The larger ])ortion of Holland is devoted to grow- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 361 

iiig grass, rye and millet, the other to gardening. 
There are thousands of spotted cattle, black and white, 
on the pastures. In nearly all the fields tubs are stand- 
ing containing a mixture of salt, clay, oil cake and 
sulphur for the cattle to lick. While other arrange- 
ments incident to dairying gives the country a prac- 
tical, domestic, homelike look, and we felt that we 
were in a home land. Windmills are abundant, and 
of immense size, some with arms thirty feet long, and 
five wide; they are very powerful motors. When a 
score of them are in sight propelled by a stiff gale they 
2:)resent quite an imposing appearance. They lift or 
pump the water from the lower ditches into the canals, 
and move the rural machinery of the country. 

By the happy counterbalance of wind and water, 
Holland is made not only inhabitable, but a land of 
beauty and productiveness, and we wonder no longer 
how the Dutch have managed to supply the world 
with so much cheese. 

We spent a dav in Amsterdam, a city of 400,000 
inhabitants, in riding on the street cars and busses, 
through the long shaded avenues, beautiful parks and 
gardens, and noted the profusion of flowers that 
decorated nearly every home, showing the passionate 
fondness for plants of the so-called stately Dutch. 
Many of the streets have broad canals running 
through them, crowded by all kinds of water craft, 



362 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

from the fishing boat to the ocean steamer. Every- 
thing indicated a seafaring commercial people, whose 
bronzed features and fearless bearing showed they 
were a race "Who go down to the sea in ships," and 
it was plain to be seen how and why Holland had fur- 
nished so many old ugly fighting sea captains in the 
past, and disputed so long with England for the su- 
premacy of the sea. Even yet they have the elements 
of power among them, and are v ready to fight at the 
smallest provocation, if the thing would pay. 

Erom Amsterdam we started by rail for Bremen, 
Germany, going southeast to Wesel up the valley of 
the Rhine, then north and in a circuitous route to see 
more countrv, and save doubling back, and we were 
well paid for doing so. Our way was through green 
pastures, among fields of grain, extensive gardens and 
homes adorned with the ever present beautiful flow- 
ers. We passed through broad level plain-like ex- 
panses, under a high state of cultivation, with evi- 
dence of thrift, economy and industry, and were still 
among a network of canals which covered the whole 
country. Here we saw the pleasing and singular 
phenomenon of ships and steamers sailing across gTeen 
fields, through orchards and gardens and standing in 
the frctnt yards of many residences. Tn reality they 
were sailing in the large canals which we could see 
only as we crosserl them. This is one of the channing 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 363 

sights of this country, and propably not to be seen any 
other place. 

Soon after passing out of Holland into Germany, 
we entered the wide rolling ])lain that we had crossed 
farther south on our trip from Constantinople, with the 
same grand succession of broad green fields, pine for- 
ests, and fine old homes. It was bright June weather. 
Everything was clothed in deepest green. The rye 
fields were whitening for harvest, the wheat in full 
head, the clover in full bloom, the door yards aglow 
with flowers, and best of all, bright, happv children 
were out in the warm sunshine, rolling, romping on the 
grass, climbing the trees, and the boy portion, true to 
life the world over, was throwing stones. It seemed 
like riding through a fairy land of sunshine. 

We had an opportunity to study the German sys- 
tem of forestry in this part of the country better than 
any place yet visited. In western Germany forestry is 
not only an industry, but a science. We passed through 
a country- where all waste and unprofitable land was 
being planted in timber, and there were many valuable 
woods of well-kept trees, and still more were being 
planted, which in time will be both useful and orna- 
mental. The result is being watched withi much inter- 
est by other countries, as it may open up a new possibil- 
ity for treeless regions. As we traveled northwest the 
interest in all the surroundings increased. On all sides 



364 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

were grand old liomes, where families had lived for 
centuries, some of each generation remaining with 
their parents, adding house to house, until there was 
a beautiful village ai-ound the original mansion, giving 
all an additional charm. Old trees overshadowed the 
village, some of which were a century old. Each day 
we marked the increase of sunlight and the shortening 
of darkness. 

With feelings approaching the enthusiastic, we 
arrived in Bremen, one of the great shipping ports of 
western Europe, a city that bore an important part in 
the middle ages, as well as in more recent times. It 
was a bright, warm evening, and I could see to read 
until a late hour. A^ext morning I could see to write 
at 8 a. m., and there seemed to be an unusual stir in the 
city: at 4 a. m. groups of people were moving along 
the street, all going in the direction of what seemed a 
large body of native woodland. The throngs gradu- 
ally increased and at 7:30 we joined the multitude 
and entered the forest. There we learned that it was a 
national festival, held in a wildwood park. Thei'e was 
one large music hall, a picture gallery, museum and 
numbers of beer gardens. In the midst of the grounds 
there was a charming lake for boating, w^ith serpentine 
shore. Soon the park teemed with tens of thousands 
of peo]:)le of every age and condition, all dressed in 
their best clothes. The walks were filled with mothers 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 365 

and ha})py-fac-(:'(l children. Older peojde were gath- 
ered around the heer tables swilling at their mugs and 
making the air fetid with tobaeco and other fumes. 
Others were listening to the music that rose and fell 
in thundering peals. The old and infirm for the time 
forgot their feebleness, the poor forgot their poverty, 
the sorrowing forgot their troul)le. The hearts of the 
poor were made glad by gifts to their children of 
sweetmeats and toys; the proud and haughty unbent, 
the aristocrat, for a day came down to ordinary life, all 
blending into a common humanity of relaxation and so- 
ciability. To me it was a day of deep interest. It 
g'ave me an insight into German character seldom 
found, for during that day the old Teutonic heredity 
cropped out unawares. I^pon returning from the park 
we took a street car and rode through the long, shaded 
streets, visited some of the oldest parts of the city,. 
dating back into the days of war, revolution and con- 
quest; we also passed some of the wane vats, which had 
figured in the scenes of the days of chivalry. At 7:30 
p. m. we started for Hamburg and arrived there at 
10 p. m., while it was still light. 

xvText morning we were out early; took a street 
car and rode many miles through the city and out into 
some beautiful suburbs, where the houses were all 
aflame with brilliant flowers and plants. TVe then 
took a walk along the docks and wharves, among the 



366 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

canals and storage depots. We noted the stagnant 
water and unhealthy condition in nearlv all the canals, 
and predicted fatal resnlts, if the cholera should come 
to western Europe, which it did two months later. 
This city is very old and was made notorious by the 
First NaiX)leon, who purposed to construct an im- 
mense navy-yard at this ])lace in which to build ships 
to invade England. History tells of his distastrous 
failure, and that by it the town Hamburg was given to 
the world ; the name signifies total failure. 

From Hamburg wecontinued northward, through 
the same rich IcA-el country, mostly in grass, on which 
vast numbers of cattle were grazing. They were rather 
larger than Holland cattle, but smaller than English 
or American. The whole land is divided into small 
fields or lots. It was a surprise to find many large peat 
bogs along our route. Hundreds of men were busy 
cutting and stacking the peat sod to drv for winte* 
fuel; in some bog^ the quantitv i)iled up would seem 
amazing to those ignorant of its use and value as fuel. 
It takeis the place of the coal and wood used in 
America. 

We arrived at Kiel, on the Baltic sea, June 7th, 
the day the Em|>erors of Germany and E-ussia met in 
that city, and we were much pleased with the coinci- 
dence. It was especially interesting to me when I re- 
called the historv of all that north countrv for the last 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 367 

ten ceDtiiries, to \he tirno when Russia was unknown 
as a power in Knrope, wliile the Norsemen dominated 
western Europe, and as J saw^ it there and then, how 
chan<yed! It was truly a grand day in XieL Each 
emperor was escorted by a fleet of gun boats and a 
strong- marine guard, with a fine display of all the 
dignity and majesty of royalty. Most of the inhabi- 
tants were out, together with many thousands from 
other cities and towns, who were charmed and enter- 
tained by the splendid music of the bands, the marvel- 
ous evfiliitions of the marines and the deafening salvos 
of heavy guns fired by the fleets and responded to by 
the shore batteries. The harbor was alive wnth pleas- 
ure boats and steamers, gaily decorated with flags and 
fancy streamers. The whole city was aflutter with 
banners. When starlight came the sky was ablaze with 
rockets and fire balls, flashing out their meteoric show- 
evs. At 11 p. m. the departure of the two emperors 
was announced by the simultaneous discharge of one 
hundred and twenty heavy guns, which shook the 
solid earth wnth their deafening roar. Tt was another 
opportunity to study Europeanism, and T tried to take 
the lesson with all its surroundings for future use. T 
spent most of the time walking amid the throngs 
watching the expression of countenances,-«o as to see 
in wbat w^ay the vast pageant was affecting them. T 
especially noted the children, who were out by the 



368 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

thousands, with, eyes dilated, faces all agiow, their 
faculties strung to the highest point of tension. 

When the last salute was tired_, the last shower of 
rockets discharged, there was not a child in all the 
thousands but received a lasting impression of the 
wonderful power and majesty of royalty, which every 
succeeding display of the kind would keep alive and 
strengthen, and thus they would grow to maturity with 
a reverence for the emperor and the nobility, and be 
willing to submit to an oppressive rod. This the 
crowned heads appreciate, and never miss an oppor- 
tunity to cultivate and intensify. While I was learn- 
ing this lesson, 1 thought of the tens of thousands who 
were that day starving in southern Russia, and of the 
ship loads of republican flour that was sailing at that 
very moment to relieve that starvation, while the two 
emperors were squandering thousands of doUai's in 
that worse than sinful display. 

At 1 a. m. we took a steamer for Korsor, on the 
island of Zealand, where we arrived at 9 a. m., June 
Sth, and took rail at once for Copenhagen, arriving at 
10:80 a. m. After lunch we boarded a street car and 
rode many miles through and across the city ; then we 
took a walk into back ways, looking into odd places 
and seeing many strange things, with undesirable en- 
counters as to smells and sounds, incident to haunts of 
poverty, suffering and sin. Copenhagen is an inter- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 369 

esting old city, with a history that goes back two 
thousand years. It was one of the strongholds of the 
old Viking kings, and bore its full share in the wars 
and revolutions of modern times. It has 350,000 in- 
habitants now, and will continue to be an important 
place for a long time to come. It is still beautiful in 
spite of age. The old high gabled, tile covered houses 
make a pleasant contrast with the modern style of 
adorning with tinsel. The people of the w^ide world 
today seem to have little knowledge of the history of 
that north country. The mass of humanity are ap- 
parently wholly ignorant of the wonderful power and 
influence Denmark exercised in controlling and col- 
lecting what was called ''Sound dues," toll exacted 
from all ships entering the Baltic sea through the nar- 
row^ sound. The final abolition of these dues became 
an international question and agitated Europe for sev- 
eral years. This fact seems to have dropped out of 
popular history, yet it came and went within my mem- 
ory, as did the abolition of the corn law of England. 

We left Copenhagen by rail for Elsinore, where 
we crossed the sound into Sweden. The ferryboat 
that took us over brought 2000 Swedish children to 
Zealand on a picnic. It was a charming and almost 
marvelous sight to see the order and ease by which so 
many children were disembarked without accident; 
they were in charge of young ladies, who formed them 



370 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

in a procession and marclied. to a beautiful grove, 
where a festival was to be held in the wann sunlight. 
We entered into Sweden at 11 a. m., and I was 
full of feelings of joy and triumph that I had at last 
reached the land of mv paternal ancestors; the land of 
the grand old A^orsenien, and of the heroic Swedes of 
modern history. With eager eyes and listening ears 
we started by rail for Christiana in Xorway, 372 
miles away. Every place had an interest, every hord, 
battle and contest; all the broad fields and green val- 
leys had been the homes of happy thousands through 
long centuries; the nursery of millions of brave men, 
who were master spirits for a thousand years. The 
history of their noble deeds and acts of tyranny, their 
otirling virtues and disgraceful crimes, their daring 
deeds of discovery, their conquests and the wild career 
of old Sigurd, the crusader, had impressed and 
charmed my early life, and when I found myself actu- 
ally passing through the wonderful land not in dreams, 
but in fact, I was so full of strong emotions that utter- 
ance was taken away. Earth, air, tree and water 
seemed to glow in the sunlight with unnatural bril- 
liancy; but there came a reaction, and I saw things in 
a more practical light, and began to draw pictures in 
memory for use at future times. For fifty miles the 
country was almost level, very rich and in high state of 
cultivation. Like Zealand, it was one wide expanse of 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 371 

rural beauty, witli abundant evidence of solid Lome 
comforts and wealth. From the green lowland we 
g-radually ascended among the rucky hills, which were 
covered with pines, that slowly increased in extent as' 
the hills grew into low mountains, and we were soon 
among some of the great pine forests, and on the out- 
skirts of the lumber regions. As we advanced objects 
of interest opened up on every side. There were nar- 
row green valleys among the mountains, overlooked 
by dark forests, dotted with lovely houses, which had a 
peculiarly charming, romantic look, amid such grand 
surroundings. 

We were full of enthusiasm for the north coun- 
try, when we arrived at Christiana in ^^orway, where 
we found much that was decidedly interesting, which 
modern history does not record, and of which little 
seems to be known by this generation. There are old 
monuments, old buildings, museums, galleries of paint- 
ings of rare beauty, old runic collections which now 
have a double interest since the Anglo-saxon is found 
to be the lost sheep of the house of Israel. The monu- 
ment of Sigurd, the crusader, is held almost sa(;red l)y 
the people. The old shi]) recently unearthed, built a 
thousand years ago, has a special interest as showing 
the skill in ship building at that time. There is a very 
massive tower standing on a hill outside the city. No 
one knows by wdiom or for what purpose it was built, 



372 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

all is iiiysterv. There i?; no tower like it in Xorway, 
and it stands there alone and unknown. 

AVe went north over a hundred miles to see the 
forests in all their native grandeur. Upon returning we 
started east t-^ward Stockholm, on the Gulf of Bothnia. 
The whole trip across Sweden was one continual 
change between green valley, bright sparkling lake, 
pine covered hills, clear rapid streams ; and many times 
all these were grouped into one scene, forming a pic- 
ture that v/as marvelous for its blending of all that was 
romantic, wild and rugged. The steady lengthening 
of the days, the mild and soothing sunlight that falls 
over the dark green pines, when it is night in other 
parts of the world, throws a strong facination over the 
mind which is both pleasing and startling. When we 
reached Stockholm we were sui*|:>rised to find it so 
charmingly situated, and so beautiful, the most so of 
any city in Europe, if not in the world. Every ele- 
ment necessary to make it thus seems to be there, and 
the taste and practical skill of an intelligent people 
has been utilized to adorn the city and perfect the har- 
bor, wh'ch is situated at the outlet of a vast inland 
system of lakes and rivers. There are manv ]:)leasure 
boats which take tourists long rides among the hills, 
along the river? and connected lakes, amid romantic 
and interesting scenes. There are also many lumber 
ships going up the river and into ;he lakes for lumber. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 373 

borne of them are constructed so as to carry whole trees 
to be used for piliug. These are takeu all over the 
world and acknowledged a superior article. 

The ice and snow do not all disappear in the 
great interior forests until June, and then come six to 
eight weeks of constant daylight and hot weather. 
The rivei^ are still flush, fish are abundant, and vege- 
tation makes a marvelous growth under the stimulus 
of light and heat. This is the time cf year to visit 
Stockholm and the far north. Twilight begins about 
the 12 th of June, and there is but a short space of time 
between sunset and sunrise. During the twilight we 
could see to read. June 12th I read until 11:30 p. m., 
and at 1 a. m. the sun was visible, and at 12:30, mid- 
night, June 15th, we took a coasting steamer for 
Haparanda in the far north, and w^ent up the Gulf of 
Bothnia. The ride down the river and out into the 
open water was very fine. Seen at an hour when our 
distant homes were shrouded in darkness made it more 
impressive. As we went north we left all night for 
many days. 

The scenery up the gulf is grand, not only on ac- 
count of its beauty, but because of its distinctive native 
peculiaritr. All along its shores are narrow inlets 
called fiords. These run back sometimes many miles 
and terminate in a land-locked bay. Other times they 
are the outlet of lakes and great watersheds. Often 
24 



374 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

they are but two or three hundred feet wide, but forty 
or fifty feet deep, so the largest ships can be towed 
in and out. From the fiords small side valleys run out 
between the hills which are all in meadow, with cat- 
tle grazing in the bright sunlight; sometimes there 
will be a broad expanse where the mountains fall 
away and the hills sink, a charming picture of rural 
life peculiar to Sweden. 

As we went up the gulf, each day everything be- 
came more interesting, the night disappeared, the two, 
then one hour of twilight came, then none at all, and 
all was day; that is, though the sun disappears below 
the hc^rizon the light is clear as if the sun were only 
behind a cloud at noon. In many places there were 
so many small islands that the way seemed completely 
closed in, but a sudden turn around a headland, and 
a broad expanse of sparkling water would appear. 
We were not out of sia'ht of land at any time; the 
beautiful pine-covered islands, or green mountains 
were always in view, and the eye did not grow weary 
with the ever changing panorama amid unfailing light. 
Even the desire for sleep left me while in the land of 
daylight. 

Xot the least wonderful thing seen along the 
coast and in the fiords is the vast amount of lumber. It 
is piled up on the shores and in great rafts afloat in the 
bays, which were constantly being loaded into ships and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 375 

eoastiiiii' steamers in quantities almost beyond com- 
putation; the lumber ships are seen by hundreds load- 
ing for every part of the world. We went ashore at 
Umea to see one of the largest lumber yards in Europe, 
if not in the world. 1 had seen some of the largest 
lumber districts in the United States, as at Detroit, 
Chicago, St. Louis, Portland, Oregon, San Francisco, 
Xew Orleans, New York and Boston, but the lumber 
yard at Umea was nearly equal to them all combined; 
there was a small bay, about five miles in circuit, at the 
head of a fiord at the mouth of a river, which had 
a large number of mills running all the time, for there 
Avas no night, and the shore of the entire bay was piled 
with lumber from twelve to twenty feet high. I 
counted one hundred ships loading with lumber for 
foreign markets. With my glass this whole wonder- 
ful sight could be seen from a small hill. I could see 
the derricks swinging their immense loads of lumber 
from off shore on to the ships, hundreds of stalwart, 
bronzed men were stowdng it away. It was a scene 
worth a long journey to witness. It would have been 
interesting anywhere, but seen in that far north 
country under perpetual daylight, as we saw it, it 
became doubly so. Here, I may say, that Sweden and 
Xonvay have been furnishing Europe with lumber 
for centuries, and they can do it for a long time to 
come. The forests reproduce very rapidly when cut 



376 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

down, and the goverument now regulates the cutting, 
so the supply will be virtually perpetual. Besides, 
since the building of railroads in Russia, many millions 
of acres of splendid pine forests have been available 
for the market. Russia, also, regulates the cutting of 
her forests to insure a continuous growth. The lum- 
ber business furnishes labor for half the people of 
^N'orway and Sweden, and many thousands of the 
young men serve as sailors on foreign vessels, espe- 
cially English, and in addition to the good wages, 
learn different language* and make interpreter> and 
guides. 

Our steamer often stop))ed from three to six 
hours at tlie wav ports. This gave opportunitv to g(^ 
ashore and see the villages and people, sometimes to 
take long walks over the hills, and to see the peculiar 
construction of the log houses in universal use; the size, 
color and quality of the horset^ and cattle, their little 
one-horse carts, the odd aiTangement of the harness, 
etc., with much more that was novel and pleasing. 
Another thing we enjoyed was the curiosity of the 
natives in wondering why two old foreigners should 
wander about seemingly with no business in view. 
Ordinary tourists went to the hotels and asserted their 
dignity, or to the saloons and drank strong drink. 
Therefore, the people scrutinized us, gave a signifi- 
cant shrug of the shoulder and head, and let us pass 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 377 

on, thinking, "thouah daft tliey are harmless," and 
we went on oiir way and enjoyed oiir opinions, and 
highly prized the facts we learned. 

At Liilia we stopped some hours, from 9 :30 p. m. 
to 1 a. m., as there was much freight being handled. 
It was as light as noonday and I could not sleep with 
wondei'S all around me. When we pushed off we had 
200 boys on board, sons of lumbermen, who were 
going to a military barracks up the coast for their first 
two months' drill service for the army. They were 
samples of undefiled Swedish life and home training, 
wild as colts, good natured, gay as birds, full of frolic 
and fun; they could play leap frog with such a vim 
that they seemed as though thev would stove in the 
deck. Yet there was not an angry word, or row of 
an}^ kind among them. They disembarked at Torra, 
and broke away from all discipline and ran shouting 
up the hill, wliere a file of solcliers were waving their 
caps and cheering. AVe now entered a more beautiful 
fiord than any we had yet seen. For about ten miles 
the country was a broad expanse of open grass land, 
thickly dotted with homes. The return down the 
fiord was fine beyond description, the sun shone from 
the northwest lighting up CA^erything with the first 
soft yellow light we had seen. We entered the Hapa- 
randa river at the head of the gulf at 10 p. m. with the 
sun ^^hining brightly. It was six miles up to the city. 



378 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

where we arrived at 11:20 p. ]ii., wlien the sun seemed 
to sink behind the land, Init after we had walked three 
hundred yards into the city, the sun was still visible 
among the pines, and at 12:15 a. m. it was above the 
pines and very bright. We saw the sun at midnight 
for the first time between June 18th and 19th, 1892. 
Thouoh we had attained one of the ambitions of 
life, yet it was not as sensational as expected on ac- 
count of the gradual approach and the becoming ac- 
customed to the continuous light for several days be- 
fore, yet it was grand beyond expression to really see 
the sun at midnight with our living eyes. At twelve 
o'clock the night of the 19th, the sun just touched the 
horizon again in a clear sky ; when an hour above, the 
light assumed a soft yellow color, and a feeling of still- 
ness and quiet seemed to rest on all nature; the rays of 
the sun appeared to slightly vibrate. This was prob- 
ably caused by coming ajeross a broad expanse of water 
in the river. The birds grew still when the sunlight 
turned yellow, the chicikens rested from their labor, 
the cattle, horses and sheep laid down on the grass; 
all was still except the people ; they seemed to be going 
continuously. Vegetation was making marvelous 
growth. In six weeks all kinds of vegetables mature, 
such as cabbage, beets, turnips, Irish potatoes, beans, 
peas, pumpkins, tomatoes, etc. Eye, that is up three 
inches when the snow^ disappears, will be fit to cut in 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 379 

six weeks, and &o it is with wheat, barley and grass. 
The snow brings down large (Quantities of ammonia, 
which is taken up by the soil and makes plant food 
abundant; then the stimulus of constant sunlight, 
heat moisture and highly electritied air causes all vege- 
tation to develop in a way not seen anywhere else. 

The midnight of the 20th was partly obscured by 
clouds, but was more beautiful than the sunlight. 
From behind the clouds brilliant streams of light 
radiated in all directions, the flashes going upward re- 
minded me of some thunder storms at home, when 
flashes of sunlight break through the advancing storm, 
but there was the constant, ever-changing streams 
that seemed to be phosphorescent in their composition. 
I sat up to see the wonderful display ; nor was the flash- 
ing light alone interesting; everything on all sides 
was full of beauty. I felt that the earth and air had 
new combinations of natural forces, but predominating 
over all was the highly electrified condition. 

We spent part of the tinae walking about among 
the scrub timl:>er and through the low marsh lands, 
and at almost every step made some new and startling 
discovery. The whole country was strewed with 
water-worn bowlders. In places they are piled up in 
long walls as perfectly arranged as if put there by 
skilled masons, in other places they are in well-shaped 
coned mounds. These, by a majority of travelers, are 



380 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

mistaken for old runic remains, but a careful inspec- 
tion shows that it is the work of the pushing power of 
ice in its periodic freezing and expansion; in many 
places large bowlders have been pushed several hun- 
dred feet, deeply striating the bedded rock, and com- 
pact gravel and clay. The gulf has once been much 
larger than now and is still receding. As the \vat(T 
line changes the ice reaches new stones and pu-hes 
them ashore, and the walls thus pushed into position 
show the different levels of the water in the past. 

AVe crossed the long foot bridge across the river 
to Tamea on the Tniland side, and found an odd old 
church; it belonged to the period of at least 1200 years 
ago. It was built of heavy pine logs, which would bear 
powerful thumping before giving way. The stone 
wall by which it was surrounded is still standing, and 
is six feet above ground and six feet thick. It had been 
used both as a church and as a place of defense in time 
of danger, but the most astonishing thins: was the 
names on the old tombstones. Even to the very oldest 
written in the present alphabet, they were but a repeti- 
tion of family names now found in Xantucket, Xorth 
Carolina and other parts of America. Some that were 
five hundre<l years old were still legible. 

To me this discovery was priceless in one respect. 
It opened up new light on the Anglo-Israel subject and 
confirmed manv farnilv traditions. It intensified mv 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 381 

interest in that country, and proves that there is much 
vahiable history lost by our ignorance of the region 
inchided in Denmark, Xorway, SAveden, Finland and 
the Baltic provinces. From Sweden may yet come 
master spirits that may save Europe, as did Gust^vus 
nearly three hundred years ago, for the race is not de- 
generating by immigration, nor exhausted by emigra- 
tion, but is simply resting while the pendulum of 
events swings to the opposite point of the arc. 

Oji the 21st there were some clouds, but the mid- 
night view was pretty good. Just after the sun passed 
the lowest depression, it went behind a narrow belt of 
clouds, which became at once intenselv luminous. 
During the passage it seemed to partake of the brilliant 
_^low of the northern light, though not flashing. 
Most of the day preceding we spent looking into the 
out houses, barns and snow sheds to see what winter 
life was in that latitude. There was every possible 
machine, device and implement for working in, on 
and with snow, gTeat heavy sleds like those used in 
Canada, as well as smaller ones for light work, all 
kinds of craft, hand sleds, snow shoes, fur and reindeer 
robes, and foot guards, and many things of which we 
know nothing. Contrary to the teaching ol booKs, 
there is no real darkness in the winter, the bright 
snow and constant coruscation of the electric flashes. 
or northern light, make it nearly as light as a full 



382 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

moon on snow in Indiana. The men can, and do, cut 
logs all winter in the forests, and make them into rafts 
on the ice to Hoat to the mills on the coast with the 
spring flood. These are but a few of the conditiona 
we lind in the land of the midnight sun, and I must say 
here, there are many other places much better than 
Haparanda to see the j^henomena, but it costs more 
money and time. One can go where the sun shines 
constantly for two months, and wdiere people live 
with tolerable comfort, if they have plenty of money, 
an article which was not very abundant with us. 

We arranged to stai^t on the return trip the morn- 
ing of the 23d by steamer, and fortunately the pre- 
vious midnight the sun was obscured by clouds, which 
became luminous, as if radiating light themselves, but 
soon afterward they pai'ted and let the sunlight 
through, w^hich shone like sheets of flame on their 
illuminated sides. This was more wonderful than 
anytliing we had seen, and it left an enduring picture. 
"We had seen the grand sight of the midnight sun in 
all its beauty. We were full of its grandeur and 
sublimity, so we made haste to pass on before anything 
could mar the picture. 

At 6:30 a. m., June 23d, we took a small steamer 
for Uleaborg, in Finland. It was rather a cool, 
drizzling day, but we made the port at 6 p. m. The 
24tli was the great festival of midsummer Sunday in 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 383 

Finland, and we stopped to see it. While there we 
made the acquaintance of Prof. Alfred Eckholm, one 
of Finland's leading champions against Russian at- 
tempts to encroach on their freedom. From him I 
learned much of the legendary history of Finland and 
Scandinavia as a whole. I also caught a glimpse of 
the inner life of freedom that is growing strong in 
secret and will one day astonish all Europe and make 
Uncle Sam glad. 

AVe were taken to the beautiful park on the river 
by the professor where thousands of the people col- 
lected to hear addresses, listen to splendid music, the 
singing of triumphal patriotic songs of freedom, where 
they ate, drank and were happy and forgot their sor- 
rows for a time. From 5 p. m. to 3 a. m. the festival 
went on amid the soft, bright sunlight, and the pleas- 
ant sound of the waters of the ffreat rapids, until the 
music and song began to die away, and soon all were 
gone, but the drunken, who were left to sleep out their 
stupor, for there was nothing to molest them. 

That day's mingling with the multitude, together 
with Prof. Eckholm's rare ability to impart historic 
information, made it a day long to be remembered, 
and the lesson was invaluable in the line of some of 
my spe<'ialt.ies. Here I was shown a singular record. 
For four hundred years an accurate account has been 
kept of the gradual rising of that north country out of 



384 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the water. It has been twelve inclies for every fifty 
years, as marked on a stone pier, where all can see. It 
is also recorded in the college. The harbors, outlets 
and cliffs show that this had been going on long before 
the a,ctual gain Avas thus noted. At Copenhagen there 
has been no change in the water line in that period of 
time. Why no one knows. 

At Uleaborg we took rail and ran down to Waso, 
on the east shore of the gulf. Here the train stopped 
for all parties to stay over night. The passengers went 
into a large hall and laid down on cots and at 5 a. m. 
were awakened and the journey resumed. We now 
ran out into the lake region, and were surprised to 
find a fine, fertile, rural country under a high state 
of cultivation, fully equal to Denmark and Sweden 
in all the elements of nationality, instead of being a 
bleak, frozen region, with dwai*fish, stupid people. It 
is quite the contrary. The people are a well-developed 
and a fearless race, patriotic to a fault. The last day 
we were in Finland, a drunken man who could talk 
American boarded the train and began conversation. 
He said his home was in Michigan and he claimed 
American citizenship. He was still drinking, and he 
soon began to use foul-mouthed American vulgarity. 
When I re(|uested him to stop hi? talk, he became 
abusive and violent. T at once astonished the con- 
ductor and mail agent l»y demanding that the Ameri- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN, 385 

cau part of the drunkard sliouid be put oti' the train, 
stating that any claim Finland had on him 1 did not 
wish to antagonize, but 1 had an interest in the Ameri- 
can part. The result was that he was put oti' at the 
next station amid a storm of Swedish and American 
profanity. I subsequently learned that but for his 
claim to American citizenship 1 might have been in- 
terviewed by Russian police for a reason for such an as- 
sumption of authority. We stayed a few hours at Vi- 
borg, a small city at the great outlet of the lake system 
into the Baltic sea. There the amount of lumber and 
railroad ties was beyond credibility to those not fa- 
miliar with the business. Here also is the future 
fashionable tourist's resort, especially for those who 
delight in yachting. A line of water communication 
through lakes and rivers of many hundreds of miles 
reaches far into the pine forests of the interior, amid 
scenes of wild romantic solitude, little dreamed of by 
the outside world. In the near future a line of steam 
or electric yachts will open this wonderful land to the 
astonished and delighted fashionable world. 

We amved at St. Petei-sburg at 11 a. m. and 
found much confusion at the station by the arriving 
and de])arting of detachments of soldiers who were* 
being transferred to various points. We were so en- 
tertained and amused with the novel and strange 
things around us that we failed to look for the English 



386 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

speaker before he left, and we had some trouble in 
finding the American consul, but linally we reached 
his office and were soon equipped for a tour of the 
great city. It would take many weeks to explore 
and understand the Russian capital, and much paper 
to write a description of it, for St. Petersburg is like 
Cairo and Constantinople, different from all other 
cities. It has peculiar characteristics, and in its 
streets we saw many types of humanity as well as 
nationalities. The city is a wonder to all intelligent 
people, and especially to those who have read and 
been interested in Peter the Great and Queen Cath- 
erine. The wide, clean streets, splendid palaces and 
public buildings, the shops, markets, parks, and long- 
shaded avenues make it the equal of any city outside 
of London. In walking and riding through its streets 
everything called to mind the genius, sagacity and de- 
votion of its noble founder. It was with feelings al- 
most reverent that I stood beside the little boat he built 
with his OAvn hands when he first came to found the 
city, and I had a similar feeling w^hen looking at the 
small yellow house he built for his home, now become 
sacred, and later on, when in the hall of the Golden 
('hariots, there was nothing so interesting as the rough 
two-horse sleie-h built by the great man. The print of 
his hammer on the braces, nail heads and bolts claimed 
my attention more than the Russian art of today. As 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 387 

we went through the museums, art galleries and halls 
of other collections we saw the rude weapons of de- 
fense and domestic use in the past, alongside the re- 
sults of recent discovery and invention. The finest 
native productions in the art galleries are placed be- 
side the old barbaric ideals during the grand old runic 
ages, when mythic sagas had such power over the un- 
tutored race. Ever^^vhere we saw the evidence of the 
napid uplifting of a w^hole race (Moscovite) from 
degradation to the higher standard of civilization, re- 
finement and powerful nationality. 

One of the most surprising things in the city is 
the hall of the Golden Chariot, a thing almost un- 
known to the world. When a new emperor is crowned 
a ver>' beautiful chariot is made, overlaid with gold 
and adorned with precious stones, with all the art 
known to the mechanics up to that date. The chanot 
is drawn by four white horses almost covered with 
gold plated harness and trappings. It is driven to the 
home of the prince, and from there he is taken to the 
grand cathedral, where he is crowned, from thence he 
is driven to the palace. The chariot then takes its 
place in the hall and is never heard of again. The 
harness is hune' up in an adjoining hall, mth the many 
presents sent by chiefs of distant tribes, governors of 
provinces, noblemen, cities and foreigners. In no 
other place did we see, in so small a space, the widely 



388 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

varied tastes, ideas standard of eivilizatiun of the dif- 
ferent portions of the vast empire than among the 
presents sent to these emperors; as to the chariots, no 
two were ahke in style. As we stood in these long 
halls it seemed more like a fairy dream than a reality, 
if we leave out the question of utility; those chariots 
were the most beautiful things in Europe. They are 
about forty in number. Standing in its place just 
where it was left after the explosion is the shattered 
chariot in which the Emperor Alexander was killed. 

While in St. Petersburg we learned some very 
valuable facts, which were fully conhrmed in after 
joui-neys. If we have read history fifty years ago, and 
compare it^ teaching with facts as found today, it 
sometimes seems v^ery contradictory. Citie^s of that 
date on one side of the river are today only suburbs to 
the railroad city on the other side. Beautiful things 
described in the books as being on the roadside are now 
miles away ''on the old road" scarcely known. Much 
as it is at home when we compare thoughts, facts and 
figures. The Yankee of Xew England, the fire eater 
of South Carolina, the man of honor from Kentucky 
are known no more. American covers all. Talk to 
the young generation of Europe about Yankees, and 
they will associate the name with some place in China; 
talk of Kentuckians, and they try to place them in 
Xent county, England; speak of fire eaters, and they 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 389 

think of the tire worshipers of Persia. So 1 lind some- 
thing to learn everyday, and when and where least ex- 
pected the facts are most startling, things that shake 
our faith in historians and learned scientists. 

St. Petersburg has nearly one million inhabit- 
ants, and is making greater progress than any other 
lai'ge city in Europe, or western Asia. Like many other 
commercial cities of the north, it is built on piling 
driven from 12 to 80 feet in the marshy soil, yet 
no one would think in riding through its long streets 
and looking at its massive buildings, that it was stand- 
ing where there was once a swamp. JSTor is it an easy 
matter to realize that it has been built up by a people 
who have come up from barbarism in two hundre<l 
years by their own efforts. 

We started from St. Petersburg for Moscow, the 
sacred city of the Russians, at -^ p. m., June 28th, and 
that night there was one hour I could not see to read 
distinctly, though it was quite light enough for walk- 
ing about. We had traveled two thousand miles in 
continuous daylight, from Stockholm to Haparanda, 
thence to St. Petersburg, and now the road to Moscow 
was taking us out of the daylight region, and the first 
real darkness was refreshing. Our route ran through 
an extended plain that surrounds the Baltic sea, and 
its connecting waters. We had pictured in our minds 
a dark and rough looking country, when we entered 

25 



390 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Russia, but we found it quite the contrary. The vast 
forests of hemlock, pine and bii^ch were more grand 
and beautiful, if possible, than in Finland, and to our 
astonishment, the lumber yards and Hoating rafts were 
as large as any we had seen. The open land reminded 
me of the great prairies of oui- fai- west; it was rich 
and capable of supporting an immense population, if 
properly cultivated, but the lack is just here, excepting 
around some enterprising nobleman's residence, wiiere 
the whole country is so improved that it seems like a 
broad held of sunlight amid darkness. The hamlets of 
the peasantis look very dirty and repulsive, while the 
people ai'e the picture of extreme degradation and 
neglect, though they all look as though they had 
enough of rough food, still it hurt me to look into the 
faces of the women and children, they appeared so 
hopelessly and helplessly low in the social scale. 
Though the men were far from clean and most un- 
kempt, they were well built and strong. It was re- 
freshing to know that these were representatives of all 
Russians of two hundred years ago, and that the pres- 
ent higher type had evolved from this unpromising 
state. Therefore, the possibilities are unlimited for 
the next two centuries. Most of the distance of the 
five hundred miles to Moscow was comparatively level 
country. The first two hundred was through the 
-southern limits of the vast pine forest that extends to 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 391 

the Arctic ocean, and will furnish an inexhaustible 
lumber supply to Russia, when she has 200,000,000 
inhabitants living between St. Petersburg and Olu- 
lorshio. 

Moscow is a beautiful modern city. From the 
ashes of its burning by the French in 1812 it has 
grown until it now has nearly a million people, and it 
is held in high reverence by orthodox Russians. 
Many priceless relics, in the form of Saga legends, 
and runic traditions, perished in the conflagration, but 
the patriotism of the people is making great efforts to 
restore the loss as far as possible. In building tasty 
and handsome churches they have made a success, nor 
are their broad, park-like avenues excelled by any 
other city. The average tourist is charmed with what 
he sees, the rides along the clean streets are most en- 
joyable, the museums and other public buildings are 
large, stately edifices, displaying much taste and archi- 
tectural originality, showing the natural ability of the 
Muscovites; while others sought their favorite amuse- 
ments I wanted to see the grand old bell whose voice 
was hushed in 1812. I found it in a small open space 
near where it fell when the tower was burned. It rests 
on a granite block about three feet high, and the huge 
clapper lies on the ground under it, the large fragment 
broken out is leaning against a block of stone. As I 
•walked around it to more fully comprehend its ira- 



892 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

mense size, 22 feet liigli and 21 feet in diametei, 
weigliing 219 tons, its wonderful history, and the 
strange and temble events that have ti*anspired since 
it first pealed out its thunder tones came to my mem- 
ory, and the fearful scenes of war, blood and desola- 
tion, which Europe has witnessed, passed in review 
with startling vividness. To see the bell was one of 
the ideals of early life, and when I stood by it in old 
age, I thanked the Lord for that as well as many other 
achievements that once seemed so far away and well 
nigh hopeless. After having seen the bell I had little 
interest in other things in the city. The lesson learned 
of Muscovite character was similar to that of the Hun, 
they are strangers in Europe, but have no ancestral 
connections left in Asia, and are lone races among the 
nations of the earth. Say what we may of Russia and 
her }>eople, there ig an internal potency capable of 
maKmg a wonderful nation in defiance of opposing 
forces. Like the United States, there are unlimited re- 
sources within the bounds of the empire to make a na- 
tion in spite of the outside world. 

From Moscow we made a long run to Warsaw in 
Poland through the same level prairie-looking country, 
with much uncultivated land and many ugly villages, 
as on the other route, though the cultivated areas were 
more frerpient and larger, showing a steady advance in 
refinement. Sometimes portions of the forest would 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 393 

come in view, and then, on the other hand, glimpses 
of the plains of southern Kussia, terminating in Hun- 
gary, were seen from the great land swells, giving in- 
terest to the entire journey. As we went farther west- 
ward, the larger towns sh<nved contact with other than 
Kussian civilization, there was a mingling of people, 
costumes and habits of life until we crossed into Pol- 
and, then everything changed. Fine fields of grain 
were on every side, with meadow land in the valleys^ 
and cattle grazing on the hills, the villages and fann- 
houses were bright and clean, all bore the mark of 
happy home life. This sudden transition out of gloom 
into sunshine w^as charming and refreshing, especiallj"^ 
when we had been under a certain half-defined re- 
straint. As we went forward all things seemed to grow 
brighter. The rye fields were ripe unto harvest, and 
the first shocks of ripe grain were seen in northern 
Poland with other vegetation well advanced, for it was 
on the border land between the long day and long 
night. It will be in place to say here that in three 
hours after we left St. Petersburg, I perceived that ix 
detective was detailed to keep an eye on us wherever 
we should go. He was faithful to his charge, though 
he \yas ignorant of my knowledge of his business. In- 
stead of being annoyed by his espionage, I was glad 
and felt safe from personal danger, for so long as he 
saw no harm in us, he would keep us from harm. 
After crossing into Poland I recognized him by signs 



39i LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and gave kLm to understand that we appreciated his 
watchful care over us. He was completely taken bj 
surprise, and by look and action showed his astonish- 
ment. He and tiie conductor had an earnest and ani- 
mated talk, and then he disappeared and was seen no 
more. 

We made a short stop in Warsaw, which is an 
historic place. Few cities in Europe have as thrilling 
history, both in the past and more recent times. Few 
have seen more siege*, sackings and massacres, and few 
have produced such men as John Sobieski and Kos- 
ciusko. The Poles are identical in race with the Fins, 
Swedes, Danes and all Scandinavians. The first thing 
a Polish mother teaches her child is to hate Russia 
with perfect hatred. Xame Russia to a Polish man, 
and he instantly frowns and looks cross, but is silent, 
but the women utter a low, but fierce imprecation 
with flashing eyes. The patriotism oi the }3eople of 
Warsaw is so strong that they keep the palace of Kos- 
ciusko in order and just as he left it the morning he 
went forth to his last battlefield in defense of Polish 
liberty. Americans will catch the fire if they remain 
long enough in the city. 

From Warsaw we ran north to intercept the great 
railway line from St. Petersburg, and then turned 
southw^estward to Berlin, where we arrived the after- 
noon of July 3d full of new thoughts, new knowledge 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 395 

and new ideas of humanity. There we found welcome 
letters from home and friends forwarded by Cook & 
Son from London. We celebrated the Fourth of Julv 
in Berlin in riding on the street cars and in omnibuses 
and suburban railways, making not less than one hun- 
dred miles of travel, mth several miles of walking. 
To attempt to descril>e the city in detail would be as 
difficult as to tell of London, for it is the second city 
in interest in Europe with its museums, libraries, art 
galleries, zoological collections, parks, gardens, halls, 
palaces, churches and marks of older and stormier 
day?. Like London and other great cities, Berlin has 
its local scenes of extreme misery, want, degradation, 
sin and shame. A walk among them makes the heart, 
soul and stomach sick, and the eyes dim with tears, for 
which there is no help. We spent the 5th and 6th in 
constant Avalking and riding. An especially enjoyable 
walk was ''Tender the Lindens," and to the play- 
ground, where hundreds of small children are taken 
out to play in heaps of sand and piles of mortar, out of 
which they make mud pies, etc. We occasionally 
varied the scene by ascending towers, spires and high 
places to get a view of the magnificent surroundings. 
There is one striking difference between the "peo- 
ple of London and those of Berlin ; in the former, it is 
possible to reason with a man, and he will give you a 
respectful hearing and accept your views if they be 



396 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

good and true, but it is just the reverse with a BerHner. 
He is proof against anything not German. The only 
way to change him is to alter the composition of his 
beer. 

From Berlin we started south to Venice in Italy, 
crossing Europe from north to south. We chose an 
unused, or unpopular route not laid down in the guide 
books; it was by way of Dresden, iSTuremberg and 
Munich, through one of the finest agricultural sec- 
tions in Europe. Harvest was in full tide, the whole 
journey across the plains, until we reached the Alps, 
was one continued scene of activity. Thousands of 
people were in the fields cutting the grain, grass, 
hoeing the sugar beet fields, weeding and cultivating 
the Irish potato, working in the market gardens, pull- 
ing the flax, gathering the mulberry leaves to feed the 
silk worms, or in the vineyards among the vines. In 
one market garden I counted one hundred women and 
girls in nearly a straight line hoeing vegetables. It 
was a beautiful sight, though a shade of sadness 
crossed the picture, for here, as in all Europe, the old 
men, the women and children have to bear the crush- 
ing burden of supporting hundreds of thousands of 
idle young men, who are compelled to serve in the 
standing armies. 

Sometimes the railroad ascended long swells in 
the rolling plain. From these summits the scenes 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 397 

were grand beyond description. Often it was like a 
vast expanse of patchwork in brilliant colors, with end- 
less variety. Sometimes miles away there would be a 
parallel swell in the country, while all the intervening 
lowland was visible to the eye. One never grew weary 
of gazing on this enchanting picture, and to crown all 
there were the magnificent highw^ays distinctly out- 
lined across the rural map^ by their white .o^raveled and 
stone-paved beds, many times bordered with long lines- 
of beautiful trees. At one time the sublimity was 
intensified by the shadow of a summer cloud, slowly 
floating over the vast expanse with its outlines sharply 
defined. We purposely traveled on the slowest trains, 
r before stated, so that we could look down into the 
little gardens and fields by the wayside and catch u 
glimpse of the domestic life among the people. The 
children everywhere were doing service according t^ 
their strength; in some places the larger ones had 
charge of the smaller ones out under the trees, others 
were carrying water in jugs t^o the laborers in the fields, 
or they were watching the docile cows and milk goats 
by the side of the railroads and highways. One place 
a boy in charge of a cow had gone to sleep and the 
cow was standing with her head over the little sleeper 
keeping ■ guard : in another place two girls were in 
charge of some milking goats; the smaller girl fell and 
\^as hurt and began to cry, instantly the mother goat 



398 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ran U» tier and licked her hands and bleated as to her 
kids; when all was well again the goat went back to 
grazingj but looked back twice to make sure all was 
safe. Still another time a small boy was holding a 
cow close to the railroad, and was so interested in the 
approaching train that he forgot his charge, but the 
motherly cow- began pulling and gently pushing the 
boy out of danger. The passengers seeing this un- 
usual act involuntarily cheered. In an instant the 
cow gave a bellow^ of defiance and sprang between the 
boy and the train and braced herself for a battle. This 
was such unmistakable instinct, connected with in- 
telligence, that it drew forth much discussion among 
half a dozen nationalities aboard the train. To me 
it was an additional item in my philosophy, that mind 
is not confined to man alone. 

AVe crossed our route from Constantinople at 
Nuremberg, but did not stop, as it was day time w^hen 
we passed and had made a visit there, but w^e stopped 
off at the celebrated old city of Munich, with its almost 
fabulous scenes of the days of war and chivalry. The 
Tyrolese Alps were a disappointment wdien we 
actually came in contact with them. They are not 
superior to the mountains of West Virginia, and not 
nearly so extensive or rugged. There is w^ilder and 
more beautiful scenery on the Kanawha river than 
any we saw among the Alps, leaving out Mt. Blanc 
and its neighborhood. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



399 



It was July, and the summits of the mountains 
were still covered with snow, and they were frequently 
in sight for several days as we went west from Con- 
stantinople, and this view of them made them very 
imposing, but afterwards when we saw them covered 
with green forests, or cultivated to their tops the whole 
Bcene was changed ; their snow-clad grandeur was gone, 
and they were as Pennsylvania. Virginia, or North 
Carolina mountains, when measured with the great 
ranges of the world. The false idea we get of the 
Alps comes from English writers, who have not seen 
other mountains, and from Americans who have but 
little knowledge of our country. I cannot under- 
stand how one who has seen the mountain ranges of 
the western half of our continent can see anything 
but beautiful foot hills in the Alps. 

In the summer of 1893 I met an Englishman 
with his family at Victoria, British Cokimbia, who 
was making a tour of the continent. He had landed at 
Quebec and crossed by way of the Canadian Pacific 
railroad. He had never before been out of England or 
Scotland, had seen no mountains until he came to the 
Kockies, w^hen he became highly excited over what 
he saw. But when he passed through the unsurpassed 
grandeur of the Frazier river mountains he completely 
lost his head. When he found that I had some knowl- 
edge of such scenes he delivered himself about in this 



400 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

vvay : ''Take the biggest liar that ever lived, a perfect 
Ananias, give him the eloquence of the ages from 
Demosthenes to Gladstone, till him with the inspiring 
influence of imaginative poetry, from Homer down to 
Whittier, then blindfold him so that he need not blush 
at his extravagance, and bid him deliver himself of all 
this combination of ability in describing that scenery, 
and the half will not be told." Then he clapped his 
hands in an ecstasy of enthusiasm. I told him there 
was but one grander thing to be seen on earth, a first- 
class storm at sea, and with increased ardor he ex- 
claimed, ""May the Lord send it." At this point his 
tine, intelligent wife and daughter interfered and 
toned him down to more practical things. This Eng- 
lishman was one of the kind who unwittingly convey 
false ideas of places and things, for let them see ever 
so much in after times, there will be nothing equal to 
the Frazier river region. 

We had left the Alps in the b<x^ks go, and re- 
member them as we saw them, small but beautiful 
mountains. When Ave descended to the plains of Italy, 
we were struck with the contrast between the extremes 
of Europe, Finland and Italy. In Finland we saw 
stalwart, brave, kindly, noble looking men, and beau- 
tiful, strong, healthy, motherly looking women, who 
seemed to bear their portion and enjoy life. In Italy 
it was the reverse, and in some instances the contrast 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 401 

was nut only painful, but revolting, especially with 
the women. Sometimes when we were walking in 
flower gardens, delighted with the surroundings, some 
woman watering, training and cultivating the scented 
flowers and plants would raise her head for a moment, 
and show a face so haggard, sad, sorrowful and de- 
spairing, out of which all joy, all hope and aspirations 
were gone and gone forever, that we instinctively 
gazed at her with pity and horror, and that face re- 
mained in the memory, when the flowers were for- 
gotten. So it is everywhere as you go out into the 
highways and byways, while walking upon the marble 
floors and thronging the great halls of wealth and 
pride, those sad, sorrowful despairing faces will be 
raised toward you from their menial, unwomanly la- 
bor, and those hopeless eyes will look appealingly into 
yours. This is the sad side of life of more than half the 
women of Italy, and as to the men, you only have to 
jro out on the streets of our cities and look at the lowest 
types you can find, and then imagine men three de- 
grees lower, and you have an idea of the condition of 
tens of thousands of Italian men. 

This contrast was not confined to the people 
alone. In Italy every available square yard is under 
cultivation, and much of it has been for 3000 years, 
while in the north country less than half is cultivated. 
The semi-tropical fruits and flowers and the totally 



402 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

different climate from the north, made this second 
visit to Italy more enjoyable. All the way from 
Berlin harvesting was actively on, and in [N'orthern 
Italy wheat and rye threshing had begun; we were 
surprised to see several American traction engines 
and separators at work. It made me think of home 
work to see familiar machinery in a foreign land, sur- 
rounded and managed by another race of people, but 
there was this difference in results — there was no waste 
of grain or straw. The latter in particular was stacked 
in the most neat and artistic as well as scientihc style. 
The stacks were the shape of an egg, with the little 
•end down, and combed smooth; there was not even 
one loose straw, and it seemed as if not one was lost, 
I was surprised to see more machinery used on the 
fai-ms of [N'orway, Sweden, Finland, Austria and 
l^orthem Italy, than in all Europe outside of Eng- 
land. Across Central Europe the grain was cut by 
hand: in many places by the old primitive reaping 
hook or sickle. Everywhere women and girls were 
I)inding grain sheaves, sometimes middle-aged women 
were using the sickle, but nowhere the scythe. In 
many places the grass was all bound into bundles 
and stood up to cure; this was the work of the women 
and girls. It was quite common in Germany, Aus- 
tria and France, where they cure hay in the same 
w^ay we do, to see a woman pitching the hay on to 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 403 

a cai't, with a girl loading, while the men were mow- 
ing and raking. Oftentimes in Italy and France 
women were on the stacks shaping and building, 
while the men were pitching up to them; the finished 
stacks were so beautiful that it showed they were 
very expert. In Southern Europe the stacks were 
nearly all the same size, about one good, two-hor-se, 
American load. 

My friend, J. V. Lindley, being an extensive nur- 
sery and fruit man, had an eye for fruits and flowerSj 
so we always found something interesting where there 
was ground and humanity; he saw the fruit and 
flowers, and I the people who cultivated them. When 
in the grain fields and meadows we could jointly call 
to mind when we were boys engaged in the same 
business and with similar iniplement.s, and in addi- 
tion we astonished the natives with our skill and 
knowledge of their tools, but we soon learned not to 
stay longer in one place than we were popular. 

We found so nmch that was new in Italy, that 
it is difficult to give brief outlines where all wan 
so interesting. Our objective point was Venice, 
where we arrived July 9th, 1892, just five months 
from the time we left Guilford College, N'orth Caro- 
lina, and about seven months after I left my home 
in Indiana, and to me it was another ideal realized. 
In early life the history of Venice had a peculiar 



404 3.1FE AND TRAVELS 

fascination: now the fact that I actually stood in the 
square of St. Mark filled nie with a thrill of joy and 
a secret feeling of triumph, as on similar occasions. 
Here was another, once hopeless, desired attained, and 
I still possessed mind and strength to appreciate the 
achievement. 

The city, as seen by those who know not its origin 
and stormy history, is a thing of beauty and delight; 
but Venice, as seen now^ by the historian, is a lovely 
ruin, slowly sinking out of sight. On every palace, 
church and tower is written neglect, decline and ruin; 
there is scarcely a trace left cvf its mendian gTandeur. 
Wben I stood on the great tower of St. Mark and 
looked out where once a thousand ships rode at anchor 
in the great harbor, there was nothing but a mud flat, 
without a man or boat in sight, and I looked down in 
the city for the splendid palaces that ^\ere so famous 
centuries ago, but they were gone, or now dark and 
sea-stained and falling into decay. The lion of St. 
Mark was much disfigured; the four brazen horses 
that once sho^^^l like a flame of fire were nisty and ray- 
less; the cathedral of the patron saint was rapidly 
sinking into decay; the once unrivalled stained glass 
windows w^ere dingy with accumulating dust; there 
were no longer hands of willing devotees to cleanse 
and y)urify its sacred interior, once the city's pride 
and boast. The people have lost every trace of Ye- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 405 

iietian character of the pa^^t, save their murderous 
vindictiveness, which happily is kept in check by 
the strong arm of united Italy. 

We took a long ride in a gondola through the 
most popular portion of the city, along the great canal, 
down the Kialto, under the Bridge of Sighs and 
other celebrated bridges, then to see the other side 
of the whited picture we took a ride among the back 
canals and by-ways; we thus found the city might still 
be classed among the novelties of Europe. In one 
place we saw a mother teaching a six-year-old boy 
to swim; she stood on the lower step at the water's 
edge. She had a rope ten feet long around the child ; 
he would run down three or four steps, jump out as 
far as he could, then go down feet foremost out of 
sight, come up kicking, splashing and laughing, while 
his mother pulled him ashore, and the same thing 
was repeated until he learned to come ashore with- 
out help, and gradually became a young duck in the 
water. A short distance farther on two ladies were 
teaching some little girls in the same way; we were 
told that every child in the city is taught to swim 
at an early age. AVe passed two men who were bath- 
ing in the canal where it was not twenty feet wide, 
and right before the water front of other houses; no 
one l)ut ourselves appeared to be annoyed with it, 
and the men appeared to be orderly and quiet. We 

26 



406 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

encountered other sights, sound and smells that shall 
be unmentionable; these like bathing seemed to be 
the established custom. Those who do not wish to 
see this side of Venice would better keep in the pop- 
\ilar highways, but to me the dark side was the most 
instructive, for when we rejoined the companies of 
tourists at evening time to rehearse the events of 
the day, not one had seen any of the small things 
that in the end become the more interesting. 
On one occasion I happened to refer to the decayed 
condition of the piling at the water line under one 
of the palaces, and not one of the party had ever 
known that the city was all built on piling, and that 
every year houses were taken down to save the val- 
uable marble of which they were built. When a 
north wind blows for several hours, the water is slowly 
driven out of the Adriatic, making a differenc-e at 
Venice of from three to five feet. When this hap- 
pens, it is a wonder to take a boat ride in the back 
canals where the piling is not hidden by casing, for 
then and there the true condition of the city can 
be understood and its end predicted. Yet nine out 
of ten tourists who ^nsit Venice will remember it as 
one of the bright pictures, but the tenth will think 
of it as a citv on which the hand of retribution has 
fallen with crushing weight, and humanity will not 
shed one tear of pity when the last stone sinks be- 



UF ADDlbON COFFIN. 407 

neatli the waterb of the sea, for her crimes have been 
without name and number. 

We left Venice at 8 a. m. one beautiful morn- 
ing, and rolled slowly over the long causeway bridge 
to the main land, and were soon among the orchards 
and gardens again. We glided by palatial halls with 
their wealth of flowers, and low, repulsive hovels, 
where hunger, suffering, sorrow and sin lield sway. 
We were charmed with the high state of cultiva- 
tion witnessed on all sides, but saddened by the sight 
of the degradation that thrust itself into or across 
every picture. Milan was our next stopping place; 
its intimate connection with some of the world's de- 
cisive events were still fresh in my memory, but its 
chief attraction was the wonderful cathedral, which 
has been building six hundred years, and will require 
two hundreds years to finish, but when accomplished 
will be the largest of the kind ever built. The an- 
nual revenue on real estate furnishes the money for 
its erection; this is the reason that it has been so 
many centuries in building. Three wings out of 
four are nearly completed, and one hundred towers 
out of the one hundred and forty contemplated. 
There is a school for archite<:'ts where young men 
are trained for life, so that there will never be a time 
when there will not be one or more architects who 
will comprehend the whole plan. . Its architecture is 



408 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

more complex than that of aiiv other building con- 
structed by men; no two things, no two parts, no 
two patterns are to be alike; eternal variety is the 
rule. As we stood on the central dome we seemed 
to be suiTounded by a forest of spires, and the roof 
is truly a wonder in its varied forms, figures, colors 
and designs; the great tlaestones composing part of 
the roof are a marvel of human ingenuity and me- 
chanical ])erfection. It is impossible for me to give a 
descri})tion of the l^ewildering splendor of the in- 
terior, even in its untinished craidition. 

]Many relics of the middle ages uiake the city 
of Milan interesting. In its art galleries are numerous 
celebrated i)ictures, before which lovers of art delight 
to linger, and like so many other places, there are 
rooms and sections that would seem more a])])ropri- 
ate at a bathing res(U-t among half civilized ])eople. 
The surrounding country is a delight to any one who 
is connected with fruit growing or farming, for like 
the cathedral, there is a variety, though here it is 
in products, appliances, adapting means to ends, and 
utilizing space; in no place did we see more trees 
trained against walls and at the ends of buildings. 
The manner of treating and training the vines in 
vineyards was, in many cases, new and novel. The 
mulberry tree was abundant; gardens and small farms 
were devoted to its culture in Svouthern France and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 409 

parts of Spain, but nowhere did we see such vigor- 
ous growth as on Mount Lebanon, in Syria, where 
there wa^ less care and greater altitude. 

From Milan we went northward into Switzer- 
land, passing through St. Gotiiard tunnel, the second 
longest in the world. It was a notable fact that we had 
now gone through the two largest tunnels and crossed 
the two greatest railroad bridges, had climbed the 
great pyramid, been on the walls of Jerusalem, on 
the ruins of Baalbec and the Acropolis, witnessed 
the midnight sun, and were still alive to occurences. 
Upon leaving St. Gothard we went through Lucerne, 
Berne, etc., by a rather circuitous route to Geneva, 
which we chose as the better way to see the country. 
Instead of finding it all a broken mountain region, 
it was much like Virginia and Pennsylvania, with 
broad valleys and moderately high mountains, entirely 
different from the representation of tourists and res- 
ident*^' of cities. More than half is available for fruit, 
grain and grass, giving it quite an agricultural look, 
much like other mountain districts in Europe. 

Geneva failed to fill the jjicture, as given by 
enthusiasts; it is inferior in many essential features 
to Stockholm, Sweden. Instead of being surrounded 
by giant mountains, it lies in a broad valley, on a 
narrow lake, which is not to be compared in beauty 
to Puget's Sound, Lake Tahoe and a dozen other lakes 



410 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

in our country. The nearest mountain is at least 
three miles away, and anywhere on the Pacilic coast 
would be called a foothill. Taken altogether, Geneva 
was a total failure when compared to its book repu- 
tation, yet viewed simply upon its merits, its is a 
beautiful city in a bright, gTeen valley, and in win- 
ter time, when the mountains are clad in snow, would 
be charming. The people were far more interesiting 
than the cities, lakes and mountains, and I soon 
learned .why the Swiss were so brave and free. The 
mothers are free, therefore the mothers of free men. 
Every time I met an old grandmother I felt like 
taking off my hat and cheering; though she might 
be old, gray and tottering as she went, yet there 
was that conscious light of freedom in her eyes that 
age could not dim. I involuntarily exclaimed: *'God 
bless the mothers of Switzerland." 

We can make a tirst-class Switzerland out of 
part of ^ew York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, 
and another from North Carolina and Tennessee, all 
the time leaving out the small neighborhood of Mt. 
Blanc, and still a third but grander one can be mad'O 
from the head of the Missouri river, surrounding 
Gallatin valley. 

Rumors of cholera had been increasing for 
weeks, and we shaped our movements so as to head 
it off as much as possible. We hurried up at St. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 411 

Petersburg to get to Moscow in advance of it, for it 
was coming rapidly on its old route from Astrakhan 
on the Caspian. Four days after we left that city 
it came, and while we were in Berlin it reached St. 
Petersburg, when we were in Venice it was at Paris. 
At Geneva we learned that Spain would quarantine 
against Prance at a given date. This shortened our 
stay at Geneva, as we were anxious to visit Spain, so 
we departed, going by v^ay of Lyons, thence south. 
to Versailles, and from there due west across Southern 
Prance to Irun, on the Bay of Biscay on the Span- 
ish frontier, and entered Spain twelve hours ahead 
of the inhibition. 

While at Geneva we made several local trips, 
going out to the mountains, up and down the valley 
among the vineyards and orchards and the interest- 
ing villages. Two days before our arrival a steamer 
on the lake had been blown to pieces by defective 
boilers, and several lives lost. While we were there 
a heavy landslide closed the railroads at the lower 
end of the lake. This made quite a stir among the 
travelers, but we took it very coolly, as we were still 
good for a twenty-mile walk and could go around 
land-slides. However, we were not obliged to do this. 

Lyons is the greatest silk manufacturing city 
in the world; cocoons from all parts of the earth are 
shipped there, and many thousands of people are en- 



412 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

gaged in the factories. For miles around there are 
large mulberry groves, and hundreds depend for their 
bread upon gathering the leaves to feed the silk- 
worms. 

The journey southward to the Mediterranean, 
and then to Irun, was through another beautiful por- 
tion of Europe. All of the land is under the highest 
state of cultivation. AVe passed through a succession 
of wheat and rye fields, rich vegetable gardens and 
fields, green meadows, mulberry and chestnut groves, 
fruit orchards, and on all sides harvest and thresh- 
ing were going on. The hay, straw and grain were 
put up in the same egg-shaped stacks that we saw in 
Italy. Every section seemed to have same local spe- 
cialty; some way of doing certain kinds of work pe- 
culiar to itself. This was also true as to kinds of 
grain or fruit. A few miles would be devoted ex- 
clusively to some one thing, then in an hour we would 
be in the midst of another sort, and so it continued, 
giving a sensational interest to the whole trip. An 
additional beauty was the Pyrenees mountains, which 
were in sight every hour, covered with forests to their 
summits, and sharply defined against the clear sky. 

With all this perfection in agriculture, the dark 
shadow of the war system of France is blighting the 
bloom of its beautiful valleys and dwarfing the hopes 
of its toiling thousands, while wealth and ])ride revel 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 413- 

in the metropolis. The canker of poverty and want 
is visible in the face^ of the laborers in the fields, 
and the vine dressers on the hills, and the sad coun- 
tenances of the mothers speak louder than words. 
Ragged, hungry children are as placards by the way- 
side that tell the story of silent, secret decline, fur- 
nishing a dark background to the bright, sunlit hills 
of seeming prosperity. Though out of the poj)ular 
route, this trip across Southern France will pay any 
one who loves rural scenerv, and to pass through a 
land connected with such stirring, historic events, 
will j)ay both time and expense. 

Our first contact with the Spaniards was un- 
pleasant. The ticket agent on the Spanish side of 
the frontier was a splendid type of Castilian woman, 
wi-th a wealth of black hair and piercing; black eyes. 
When she found we could not speak her language 
she deliberately extorted ten dollars more than the 
price of each ticket to Madrid. AVe knew it, and 
through an American speaker demanded restitution, 
but with a defiant toss r»f the head she toLI us to 
''Help yourselves," and we did, but when we arrived 
at Madrid we reported the same to our minister, \\ho 
took careful note of the case and bade us go our way. 
A month later he sent the money to our address in 
London, saying he had caught the lady nicely, and 
that she was made to properly refund and was dis- 
charged. 



414 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

From Irim we went direct to Madrid, though 
the railroad was very serpentine in its course through 
the mountains and of but little interest, and not much 
ditferent from the French side of the line, _excepting 
there was more land sown in wheat. After a few 
hours' ride over a rolling country, the whole scene 
suddenly changed, much to our astonishment. All 
the suiTOunding looked and seemed as though I 
were again in the gTeat central valley of Mexico in- 
stead of Southern Europe. On every side there were 
marks of an arid, imgating region, the grass was 
brown and diy, wheat was standing dead ripe in the 
field or lying on the ground not bound or shocked, 
as though there was no rain to damage it. The 
streams of water were low, and in places dry, the 
work in the lields was being done as in Mexico, the 
people look and moved like Mexicans and Arabs of 
Syria. 

As we advanced into the interior our astonish- 
ment increased; instead of seeing mowei-s and thresh- 
ers and modern agricultural implements, we saw the 
same tools as in Egypt and Syria, and the work all be- 
ing done by hand. There were large threshing floors 
cleared off the ground, to which was carted and car- 
ried on donkeys and the heads of women and men, the 
sheaves of grain, and threshed by the primitive meth- 
ods used in the days of Abraham. On some of the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 415 

threshing floors were heavy poles pinned together, 
and dragged by four mules or a yoke of oxen. Some- 
times several mules or oxen were tied abreast and 
driven around to tread out the grain; in one place 
twenty-five mules were going on a floor 200 feet in 
diameter. These floors were near the villages, and 
all the inhabitants were engaged in the work. White 
the treading was going on in one part of the yard, 
others were busy raking up, carrying away and stack- 
ing the straw; still others were piling up the wheat 
in the chaff into large, conical piles; others again were 
throwing the wheat high into the air with large, 
wooden shovels, and -the chaff of the treading floor" 
was blown away by the wind. 

At one village we counted three hundred people 
and seventy-five mules and oxen, all working har- 
moniously in their places. Five dozen sheaves was 
a load for a cart, one dozen for a man, and six to 
eight sheaves for a woman. During the harvest time 
of six weeks it scarcely ever rains, especially away 
from the mountains, and there is no necessity or 
hurry in saving the grain or hay crop, probably a 
good thing for la^y, indolent people. IvText in line of 
surprises was the waste, worn out and abandoned land 
seen on everv side, sadly reminding' us of the southern 
states of our own country. We soon saw and learned 
that there was more of such land in Spain than in 



416 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

all Europe, outside of Turkey. It was distressing 
to see long gullies and fallen stone walls, where once 
had been luxuriant fields, olive groves and broad pas- 
ture lands. Steady de^dine is seen in the once stately 
mansions, partly in ruins, and in part inhabited by 
a remnant of a once noble family. We often saw 
the remains of old olive orchards, which covered 
thousands of acres, now slowly disappearing, with 
no sign of new orchards being planted. In like man- 
ner large forests of the cork oak have been wantonly 
destroyed, while none are replanted. Where once 
were beautiful lawns, parks, waterwavs, laklets and 
pleasure grounds, now cattle and sheep browse among 
the thorns, briars and dwarf bushes. Many of the 
smaller towns and villages are sunburnt, flowerless, 
shadeless, cheerless-looking places; possibly near some 
of the towns there yet remains one of the many beau- 
tiful, suburban churches that adorned the whole land 
when Spain was in her prime. Evers' mile we traveled 
in all the country was a surprise and disappointment; 
we seemed to be among ruins too recent to have the 
charm of antiquity, and too old to retain nuich of 
their former glory. 

When we reached Madrid we were prepared for 
disappointment, and rather enjoyed the situation, for 
th(^ Spanish capital has a wonderful recMtrd for wealth 
and grandeur, and there is still much that is impos- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 417 

iiig and subliiiu*. We made haste to explore the 
. larger jvortioii of" the inagniticeiit palaces, cathedrals, 
nniseuins and splendid, ])rincely mansions; then, as 
usual, we started on the byways, but to our horror 
we found that we were in the midst of a vindictive, 
murderous race of men, who were smarting under 
the galling consciousness that they had fallen so 
low, that there was none so vile as to do them rev- 
erence. The sight of self-conscious, haughty Eng- 
lishmen, who walked their streets, iired their re- 
vengeful spirits with a thii'st for blood. Xeither the 
English nor Spaniards have forgotten the days of the 
great armada, and the haughty boast of the King 
of Spain to carry England away by handfuls. 'Now 
England has Spain financially by the throat, and 
delights in torturing her fallen enemy by occasionally 
tightening the grip. As in Constantinople, we felt 
a sense of insecurity, and tin-ned away from the by- 
ways with fear and loathing. 

As soon as we stepped oft" the train at Madrid 
we inquired of an Englishman for the American min- 
ister. Imme<liately a tall, sharp-eyed man turned 
round and looked me in the face for a moment, then 
assumed indift'erence, but presently he re]>eated his 
look, and before we started away he had inspected 
us the third time. T, too, had been watching him, 
and had his picture fixed in my mind. We had some 



418 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

diliiculty in linding our minister, but eventually suc- 
ceeded. When we came out of his office mj man was 
standing on the opposite side of tlie street, evidently 
thinking that I did not see him. It was nearly a 
mile to the hotel we had chosen, and we walked 
slowly up one of the principal streets; by the time 
we had gone two squares my man passed us with 
his sharp look. I now told my friend that we had 
a life guard, as in Russia; very soon he passed us 
again, and before we reached the hotel he had gone 
by four times. He was a detective who understood 
English, and he was passing to catch our words. I, 
too, turned detective, and resolved to keep my eye 
on him, though I was glad he had us in charge. 
A\nien we came out of the hotel to start through the 
city, he was standing near seemingly unconcerned, 
but I caught him on a pin hook the first effort. I 
said to my friend: ''I will look for some sensible fel- 
low, and see if I can make him understand by signs 
where we want to go." Then we settled on oiu* route, 
which I believe my man heard. I looked about aim- 
lessly until I caught his eye, then approached and 
began my pantomimes, which he seemed to readily 
understand, as with my cane I marked out on the 
sand every point we had mentioned. I saw he was 
caught, and although he tried his best to take us un- 
awares in our talk, when he was in sight we were 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 419 

always speaking of the glory of Spain, or other things 
he eared nothing aliout. We left Spain and Madrid 
withe »nt his finding out that 1 knew he was a detective. 
I saved him a good deal of travel by talking over the 
places we would visit; thus he was able to go across 
the country and be there Avhen we an-ived, with his 
keen, black eyes and poorly-disguised indifference. My 
friend said I might amuse myself with detectives, but 
there were better things which entertained him. 

We left Madtid for Lisbon, in Portugal, early 
in the morning, and were soon out into large wheat 
fields and olive groves, which had once covered many 
broad acres of land, and occasionally passed the re- 
mains of vineyards, parts of large estates w^hich are 
now neglected or in a poor cultivation, while the man- 
sions belong to the same were invariably in ruins. 
Everyw^here the villages had the same sunburnt, cheer- 
less look, the same primitive style of agricultural im- 
plements, the same eastern style of building; the 
oxen, though strong and large, were yoked in 
primeval fashion to carts of similar date. The plains 
wei-e destitute of forests, the low, naked, rocky hills 
had a desolate, Syrian look; but for the people it 
would have been easy to believe we were in Western 
Asia. The harvesting and threshing of wheat and 
rye was still going on. In many of the river val- 
leys were fields of American coi*n, but it was the kind 



420 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

grown in Mexico or on the lower Danube river, small, 
white, very hard, resembling the hackbury in the 
Ohio valley; two crops are grown each year. On 
some of the limestone hills were groves of mulberry 
trees like those growing on Mt. Lebanon, in Syria, 
which seemed to be very productive in fruit and 
leaves; the sei-ond crop of leaves was being gathered. 

With all of this outward sign of decay and de- 
-cline, the whole of Spain is full of interest to the his- 
torian. Like Greece, it has had much to do \\dth 
humanity in the ])ast, and nearly all its rivers, val- 
leys and mountains have witnessed stirring events — 
it has been a battlefield of the worM. Tt was fa- 
mous in the days of the Judges of Israel as a trading 
mart and for planting Hebrew colonies. The early 
Iberians seem to have been a highly civilized and 
commercial people. It was the field on which Rome 
and Carthage first met in their struggle for empire. 
Then it became one of the principal provinces of 
the Roman empire, and in the revolutions that con- 
vulsed the world from the seventh to the thirteenth 
century, Spain bore an important part. In modern 
times she has been one of the grandest, as well as 
one of the most wicked and cruel, nations in Europe, 
and is now suffering retribution. 

We entered Portugal after night, and made the 
run to Lisbon in the dark. Though it was but a 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 421 

few miles, 1 regretted luissiiig the scenery, but we 
were euiiipensated by the view of Lisbon, which is 
a very beautiful place, with an inland harbor. Like 
the cities of Spain, its numerous marble palaces, pub- 
lic buildings, old, princely homes of the nobility, its 
monuments, colonnades, parks and gardens attest to 
its former wealth and power. Alas! like Venice, 
there are signs of decay and wealth on every side, 
the rust and dust of laiin is tarnishing its golden 
sheen, its marble halls are being stained with the 
mildew of time. As I w^alked the beautiful streets 
and down to the landing, the history of Portugal's 
glory and her King John came back to memory. I 
thought of the tide of wealth that once came into 
port from all the earth in her fleet of a thousand 
ships and of her influence among the nations, and 
when 1 turned to contrast the Lisbon of to-day, with 
its empty harbor, with the-- Lisbon of the past, the 
contrast was so striking and sad that I had to dismiss 
the subject and try to hide the picture. Nor w^as the 
historical part alone deplorable — the inhabitants are 
a far sadder sight when we remember that noble, 
Iberian race from which the Portuguese descend. 
To-day not one in five is of pure blood: all the others 
have a combination of African, East Indian. Moor- 
ish, Siamese, Arabian and Turkish, with other un- 
defined mixtures. At fii'st sight the amalgamation 
27 



422 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

is repulsive and revolting, but we soon become recon- 
ciled wlien we see no trace of prejudice among the 
people. 

Those who remember the account of the earth- 
quake at Lisbon, as given in the school books of sixty 
years ago, will also call to mind the picture of the 
ruined wharf, and be intensely interested to see a 
part of that dock yet in sight; the harbor at Lisbon 
brings to recollection many other memories of school- 
book stories. Indeed, a visit to Lisbon will remind 
one of much important history, for Portugal, thougb 
a mere s])eck of territory in Europe, did a wonderful 
amount of colonizing; it planted many eolordes 
around Africa and in southern Asia, besides the now 
great Republic of Brazil. 

AVe went north from Lisbon on the return trip to 
(3porto, through Northern Portugal and Western 
Spain ; the country was 'much the same as that we 
had passed through, though there seemed to be 
more unproductive, neglected land. From Oporto 
we went eastward to Salamanca, a city celebrated 
through all history, and especially during the five 
hundred years' war with the Moors. It bears the 
marks of age, of battle and siege, and if its old walls 
could speak they would tell of murder, torture and 
crimes untold; but it will figure in history no more, 
its davs are numbered. Then we went to Valladolid, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 423 

auotlier city with a wonderful history. It was once 
a beautiful place and a grand country, but is now on 
the decline. It was one of the headquarters of the 
Christian heroes, who never bowed the kne"e to Moor- 
ish power. In that part of Spain Pelagius did some 
of his most heroic deeds, and finally turned the tide 
of conquest and saved his country. We crossed the 
Elbro river, the celebrated pass where Pelagius made 
one of his celebrated strategic moves, which made 
him a terror to the Moor. It is in a beautiful, ro- 
mantic country, which men might die to defend, as did 
those fearless mountaineei^. We reached the Span- 
ish frontier at Irun, where we entered France and 
felt quite a sense of relief and safety when we crossed 
the line. 

Before dismissing Spain, I would say that all 
who wish to study Europe as it is to-day, should visit 
Spain and Portugal so as to see their present con- 
dition. The striking contrast between them and other 
nations of Europe will be forced upon the traveler 
in a startling manner, and the lessons taught are es 
sential to an intelligent understanding of modern his- 
tory and the relation existing between Europe and 
America, and the English and the Spanish-speaking 
peoples. Those who do not care for such study, I 
would advise to leave Spain and Portgual out of their 
European tour. Spend the time and money in seeing 



424 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Noi'M^ay, Sweden, Finland, and the Land of the 
Midnight Sun. Aside from history, Spain has noth- 
ing but what can be duplicated in other countries, but 
the places just mentioned have attractions not seen 
anywhere else, and they are alike interesting to his- 
torian, scientist and tourist. 

On the morning of July 24th, 1892, we bought 
tickets for Orleans, France, but a bewhiskered, self- 
conceited official put us on the train going to Lyons, 
and we were in a through car and no conductor or 
guard came in, but as we were carried on the sun 
shone in on the wrong side for us to be going tow- 
ards Orleans. We made several efforts to make our- 
selves understood,, but failed until we spied a young 
Englishman at a station, to whom we explained the 
situation ; in a moment he saw the mistake and called 
an official. We knew the railroad laws in such cases, 
and required them to send us to our destination by 
the nearest route; we had been taken east one hun- 
dred miles in stead of north. We were changed to 
another road and whirled away, then transferred 
again, and at the end of five hours we were landed 
at Bordeaux, on our original route. From there we 
traveled through a very beautiful coimtry of vine- 
yards, rye fields and market gardens; harvest was 
still going on, and the countrs" seemed to be in the 
glow of summer bloom, and in the midst of a pros- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 425 

perous year. It was after niidnight when we arrived 
in Orleans; we were tired, hungry and out of all pa- 
tience with everything French. 

Next day we spent in the nurseries of T. and E. 
Trausan, two of the largest nurserymen in Europe, 
whom my friend, J. Van Lindley, had met in the 
United States, so there was a hearty greeting between 
them. To my companion, the sight of this wonder- 
ful nursery was past description; to see it had been 
one of the hopes of life, and when it was realized 
it was a joy unspeakable. The proprietors were 
most kind to us, and were unwearied in showing 
us through their wonderful collection of the fruits 
and flowers of the world. This nursery has been 
generations striving to increase its beauty and use- 
fulness. I cannot attempt a description of this beau- 
tiful place — none but an expert florist could do it, 
and no other class of readei-s could understand the 
portrayal. At the end of five or six hours I had 
to stop amid a sea of magnificent blooms and rest, 
while my friend went on with radiant face and spark- 
ling eye among the ever-changing, but bewildering, 
world of beauty. Trees, fruits, flowers, ben*ies, nuts, 
roots, bulbs, vines, creepers, dwarfs and giants were 
there being tested for use, ornament or information. 
Perhaps the most interesting were the hundreds of 
hybrids, budding, grafting and double vitalizing, in 



426 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

wavs and me^ns that have never entered the imagin- 
ation of the average mortal. 

When I fell out of line and stopped, I saw 
manv things that came within my comprehension, 
though dim-eyed. There were many varieties of trees 
and vines, with limbs bent down and covered with 
earth until rootlets were formed, then the outer end 
was cut off with the roots and propagated from cut- 
tings and grafts as a new variety. What appeared 
to be genuine rose trees turned out upon close in- 
spection to be roses grafted in a very ingenious man- 
ner into a shrub thorn, and I came to the conclusion 
that there were no rose trees in nature. These are 
but a few of the surprises that I came across among 
the great multitude of artificial products which are 
sold as natural, yet the world believes in them and 
is satisfied, and so it ever mil be. The nurserymen 
are as skillful in carving, cutting, dissecting, destroy- 
ing and restoring among the forms of vegetable 
life as are the surgeons in working with the more del- 
icate and complex forms of animal life. At dinner 
we were unusually animated; I could not talk with 
experts on things pertaining to the craft, but when 
it came to telling American stories I was equal to 
the best, and bridged over the breaks in the entertain- 
ment. 

From Orleans we went westward to visit the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 427 

second largest nursery at Angers, owned by Louis 
Leeroy, which was as interesting as the one at Or- 
leans. We were shown through the home grounds, 
then Friend Lindley was taken out to see more ex- 
tensive grounds a few miles from the city, leaving 
me to wander alone among the wonderful collection 
of all that was beautiful, useful, novel, charming, 
useless and monstrous, in fact, all that any of taste 
or any without taste might call for. The class who 
loves the truly beautiful would find it there in per- 
fection, while those who liked to be humbugged could 
be accommodated to the full; those who want to be 
fashionable could be loaded with the light and worth- 
less. 

From Angers we went northward to St. Malo, 
on the channel, one of the old romantic cities of the 
middle ages. It stands on. an island, and is one of 
the few places which has its old walls and battle- 
ments still perfect. It is so situated that it was strong 
by nature, and it was greatly strengthened by art, 
that until heavy guns were invented it was well nigh 
impregnable. We could walk around on its walls 
without danger, and it is one of the grand relics of 
the past. It is now a great resort for sea bathing, 
and has a novel contrivance for the sport: a slotted 
cage or house is made on wheels, which is run down 
a track until sufficient depth is attained, when the 
bath is indulged in without fear or danger; a hun- 



428 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

dred such houses are manipulated by a small engine. 
Those who experienced it said it was enjoyable to 
be in the cage. When there was a rough sea out- 
side the great swells rolled and broke harmlessly over 
fchem. A day at St. Malo is worth two days amidst 
the disgusting vanity and deceit of Paris. 

We next took a small channel steamer for the 
island of Jersey, the original home of the Jersey cow ; 
it is a beautiful place, and every available part is 
in cultivation. It is subdivided into small farms of 
from five to twenty acres each. There are many 
market gardens and immense glass houses in which 
fruit and vegetables are grown for the London and 
Paris markets. The celebrated cow is seen singly 
or in small herds, tethered to a stake, grazing in 
lots; they are nowhere running loose. When we con- 
sider the size of the island we do not wonder that 
the cattle are small. We found the day's ride most 
interesting, the fresh sea breeze, the green fields, and 
the ever-swelling chop sea made up a scene that we 
will not forget. 

Our next stop was at the island of Guernsey, 
where a new surprise met us in the fonn of huge 
glass enclosures, in which all kinds of fruit and vege- 
tables are grown. Like the lumber in Sweden, there 
were more glass houses on Guernsey than we haa 
seen in all the world beside. The amount of fruit, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 429 

vegetables and grapes grown under glass is astonish- 
ing to Americans. We walked through one of the 
grape houses, 700 feet long, which had 20,000 bunches 
just ripening, each one weighing half a pound. Near 
by were several houses of tomatoes in every stage 
of maturity, so there may not be a break in the daily 
supply. One house, about twenty-hve feet high, 
fifty feet wide, and seven hundred long, was full of 
ripe tomatoes. The plants were in boxes in tiers from 
the ground to the ridge pole, and presented a grand 
sight ; the whole seemed to be a solid mass of delicious 
fruit. 

There is a fleet of small steamers which carry 
the products of these islands to market. Some of 
them look like a solid mass of basket and boxes of 
fruit of every size, piled around a smoke stack, and 
moving over the water. We spent a day going around 
the island and among the glass houses. We also saw 
the native Guernsey cow grazing in the small lots, 
and we pronounced it better than the Jersey, w^hen 
each is seen on its own soil. 

The people of the Channel Islands are largely 
[N^orman in blood, but are intermingled with French, 
Irish and Scotch, consequently they have a singular 
mixture in language and local customs. like many 
other mortals, they have a very good opinion of them- 
selves. Almost any observer will be interested in 



430 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the amount of heavy sea walls that have been built 
around the islands to prot-ect them from the terri- 
ble force of the Atlantic storms that come into the 
mouth of the channel from the west with a power 
that landsmen cannot understand. 

From Guernsey we went by steamer to Wey- 
mouth, in southw^est England, thence to Loudon and 
to our former home, with our friends, John B. Watts 
and family, where we arrived at 9 p. m. July 30th, 
after an absence of fifty-seven days, having traveled 
nearly 10,000 miles. The four extreme points we 
had visited were Ilaparanda, Sweden: Moscow, Rus- 
sia; Venice, Italy, and Lisbon, Portugal. We had 
passed through thirteen different nations, speaking 
seven languages besides English. 

We finished our tour on the Continent without 
accident or serious delay at any place. We suffered 
but little inconvenience from ignorance of language, 
and we learned to travel at less than half the ex- 
pense of ordinary tourists. We readily adapted our- 
selves to new surroudings, and had no difficulty in 
getting along with all classes of people: it was known 
evervwhere that we were whollv unarmed. 



CHAPTER TWELVE. 



Trip Tln-ough Wales — Ruins of Tintern Abbey — 
Across the Gliannel to Ireland — Dublin and Sur- 
roundings — Trip to the South and West, Lake Kil- 
larney, and tlie Wild Irish — Limerick, the Old 
Town, Treaty Stone of 1692 — Go North and East 
-^Sligo— Giants' C'auseway — Go to Home of My 
Ancestors at Balynalinck — Old Temple and Burial 
Ground — Vision of the Past — Cross the Channel to 
Glasgow — Trip Through Scotland and Back to 
London — : Voyage Home — Storm at Sea — Ship 
Disabled — Adrift Eighty-eight Hours — Land at 
New York — Return Home. 

We rested a few days in London, then began 
looking toward the end of our long program. Ire- 
land and Scotland were yet to be seen, both of them 
having particular interest, the first especially. On 
August 5th w^e started w^estward, going to Bristol, 
where we stopped and walked over and under one of 
the celebrated suspension bridges over the Severn 

river. It is over two hundred feet above water, and 

r 

in a wild, romantic place. Then we passed through 

(431) 



432 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the three-mile raikoad tuunel, under the bay at the 
mouth of the Severn. From there we went to Tin- 
tern Abbey ruins, on the Wye river. It is one of 
the finest in England, and, was built in the fifth or 
sixth century, before images were admitted to other 
churches. It is two hundred feet long, one hundred 
wide, and the gables one hundred feet high. The 
walls are very massive, but still perfect; all the wood 
work has been gone for centuries. It stands in a 
deep, romantic mountain glen, at the head of small- 
boat navigation. The ruins were forgotten by the- 
outside world for many hundreds of years, until a 
railroad penetrated that region; now it is popular, 
and it is well worth seeing. We took a circuitous 
route through Wales and the Welsh mountains, and 
finally came out at Liverpool. There we took steamer 
and crossed the channel to Duldin, Ireland. The 
passage was made in the night, on smooth water, with 
quite a throng of tourists and Inisiness men. There 
was much Irish wit, English dignity and American 
exaggeration; it was a question as to which was en- 
titled to the premium, the Irishman or the American. 
As we steamed slowly up Dublin bay, or harbor, 1 
was charmed with its perfect beauty and sunlit bright- 
ness; it is one of the few places hard to over-color 
when seen under favorable circumstances. Dublin, 
like ConstantiHO})le, when seen in the early morning, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 433 

is a pretty picture, not to be forgotten; but Dublin 
is internally liandsonie, far more so than Constant- 
inople. My friend being somewhat unwell, rested 
at a. hotel, while I took a tram car and saw the beauti- 
ful city from end to end, and then ran out on the sub- 
urban roads. Like the landing in Sweden, I was 
full of expectation, and every object and place had 
an interest, for Ireland was the home of my maternal 
ancestors, and to see it had been one of the hopes 
of life. Now that I was actually treading its almost 
sacred soil, I was filled with emotions almost beyond 
control. By night I was tired and hungry, but full 
of enthusiasm for the grand old city, w^hich has seen 
as much history as any nation in Europe. It was in- 
habited centuries before Rome or Athens were 
founded, and the iXlbanoids were in Ireland when 
Egypt was young. One of the interesting points in 
Dublin is the old cemetery, where Ireland's noble 
dead have been buried for four thousand years. 
Among the sacred tombs of the past, none is held 
in greater veneration than that of O'C^nnell, the 
gifted statesman and orator of this century. It was 
a grand and solemn enjoyment to walk among the 
tombs of our ancestors, and call to mind their noble 
deeds, and cast the mantle of charity OA^er their sins. 
From Dublin we went southwest to Port Arlinc>- 
ton, thence south to Ivilkennv and Waterford. It was 



434: LIFE AND TRAVELS 

a grand ride tlirougli a cliariiiiiig panorama of green 
fields, grass-covered hills and low mountain ridges. 
On every side we saw fields of rye, oats and grass, 
with broad pastures on tlie hills, and in the beautiful 
valleys fields of potatoes. The grain and grass was 
ripe for harvest, while the potatoes were in their 
prime and rapidly maturing. As we went forward 
the scene was constantly changing as the hills and 
valleys came in view. Not the least novelty was the 
large number of fine, white hogs that were grazing 
like cattle on the green hillsides, and it is safe to 
say we saw more hogs in Ireland than in any coun- 
try in Europe. Hogs would be a specialty in one 
section, while it would be sheep and cattle in another. 
The whole scene came to us like a revelation, for in- 
stead of finding it neglected and desolate, like Spain 
and Portugal, we found Ireland to be the finest look- 
ing country in Europe; yet I am sorry to say some 
specimens of manhood were in striking contrast with 
the glorious land in which they lived. Though earth, 
air and sky were inspiring, we could not shut our 
eyes to the fact that we were in the midst of a 
■ruined, whisky-soaked, tobacco-smoked and priest- 
ridden people, for whom there is no hope until whisky 
and priests are banished from the land. But for this 
fact, everywhere staring us in the face, our ride 
through Ireland would have been the finest in all our 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 485 

travels. Xo country ever presented so many possi- 
bilities in such desirable combinations, under such a 
climate and ocean surroundings. 

In passing Kilkenny, all Americans involuntar- 
ily call to mind the amusing cat story, but are sur- 
prised to see so beautiful a town })erclied on the 
side of a hill of the finest variegated black marble, 
in such quantities that the streets are paved with it; 
the people seem to be unconscious of their world- 
wide notoriety. There is a grand succession of green 
hills until Waterford, on the southern coast, is reached. 
That place was famous two thousand years ago, and 
for a long time held out against the Norman con- 
quest, but to-day it is only a nice sea coast town, with 
no distinguishing marks. We now m<:)ved west across 
the south of Ireland to Lake Killarney. Next morn- 
ing walked out to the lake and noted every turn in 
the road, every tree and bush, fur we were on sen- 
sational, as well as historic, ground. Near the boat 
landing we were rejoiced to see one of the grand ruins 
of Ireland's lost glory. This tow^er was built about 
the beginning of our era, by a war-like, independent 
tribe, as their stronghold, and so well was it con- 
structed that it defied all efforts to take it. During 
the Danish and Nomian invasions it w^ithstood every 
attempt to besiege or take it by storm; in time there 
arose a prediction that it would never be taken until 



436 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

attacked bv strangers who would come by water. 
Tbe Danes finally attempted to starve it out; to do 
this they Avent to the pine forests at the head of the 
lake, and built several flat boats to cut off supplies 
by way of the lake. When the garrison saw the 
boats corning they remembered the prediction, and 
at once fled to the mountains. The Danes tried in 
vain to destroy it; a square tower nearly one hun- 
dred feet high and forty feet square still stands un- 
broken. Many of the strong walls and outer defenses 
are yet standing in grim, massive greatness, defying 
-even the hand of time. The ruins alone are worth 
a trip to the lake, even though that body of water 
is celebrated as the scene of St. Patrick's last effort 
and final success in destroying the wise old serpent 
in Ireland. Aside from these interests, the lake is 
more charming than half the popular ones of Europe. 
We took a boat ride and landed on one of the nu- 
merous little islands, where there w-as a church and 
celebrated school in the early centuries of our era. 
It was surely a model of sylvan beauty and rural soli- 
tude, surrounded by splendid mountain scenery; even 
yet there are traces of the secluded walks along the 
rocky shore. VVhile we were out a sudden gale came 
through a mountain pass that made the lake danger- 
ously rough. Our young boatman tried hard to hold 
his course; after a while we saw it was bevond his 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 437 

power, and tuld him to run before the wind until we 
could get ashore. This he did and landed us two 
miles from our starting place; we walked back to the 
town, tired and wet, but highly pleased with our 
day's adventures. We will not forget the old ruin, 
the lake nor the dangerous run in an open boat be- 
fore the gale. The town of Killarney is a clean, 
lively place, the inhabitants are all full of droli, 
mother-wit, ready to "answer a fool according to his 
folly." 

We next traveled north to Tralee, a city of 
twelve or fifteen thousand inhabitants, hid away 
among the Kerry hills, and almost unknown to the 
world, yet it is one of the very interesting places on 
account of its people, who are pure types of Tip- 
perary, or wild Irish, who have not yet lost all their 
tameless independence. They were the last of the 
Irish to accept Christianity, and they seem to-day 
as if they had received it but imperfectly. We took 
a long walk through the city, among the half wild 
people. It was market day, and there were thousands 
of the country and towm folk on the streets and in 
the market place. They all talked the rich, bumble- 
bee Irish; half the men and boys were armed with 
a shillalah. Everybody was talking and gesticulat- 
ing, and at first it seemed as though there was go- 
ing to be a riot, but w^e soon learned that all things 

28 



438 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

were normal. There was a multitude of little carts, 
loaded witli country products, all managed by women ; 
in fact, it was the only place we found where women 
held absolute sway. In more than one instance we 
saw women have their drunken husbands tumbled 
.into the cart among baskets and buckets, and hauled 
away like sacks of meal. On the sidewalk and in 
the market the women held the right of Avay with- 
out question. The half-grown boys looked like com- 
pounds of frolic, fight and fim^ and the men as if 
they were spoiling for a light with their shillalahs. 
We were told that it took twice the number of police 
to keep order than it did in any other city under 
English law. 

In one part of the market street, and in an ad- 
joining thoroughfare there seemed to be an unsusual 
number of two-hundred pound ladies, all motherly 
looking, going about with huge baskets on their heads, 
clearing the sidewalks and opening a lane wherever 
they passed. Others were standing at the stalls, as 
noisy as parrots, while men and boys gave them a 
w^ide berth. If you want unadulterated Irishmen, go 
to Tralee; there is nothing stereotyped there. If you 
are an enthusiast over Irish independence, do not go 
there, or you will lose your faith in self-government 
for Ireland for many days to come, thoujofh it may 
not increase your respect for England^s misrule. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 439 

1 learned an additional lesson in humanity at Tra- 
lee, for tliere the worst elements of original Irish life 
can be seen. We are given a chance to contrast the 
Phenician colonist with the Hebrews, who came to 
Ireland about the same time. The fierce, ungov- 
ernable spirit of the Phenician, when under the in- 
fluence of whisky, strong excitement or superstitious 
zeal, is harder to control than wild animals, hence 
the term wild Irish has been given the Phenician 
descent in southwest Ireland. 

Our next move was to Limerick back into^ the 
conventional route. Limerick had so many historic 
memories that the following morning by daylight I 
was out exploring the city. I first went into old 
Limerick, the city in time of Cromwell, and found 
the ruins of the house of the general, which Crom- 
well battered down; then to the famous round tower, 
which withstood and defied every effort of Cromwell 
to take it. As seen now, it looks massive, gloomy 
and battle-scarred, and probably has seen as much 
sanguinary war as any tower of the last two thous- 
and years, for it occupies the spot where the first 
tower was built twenty-five centuries ago. It is one 
among the many places that have witnessed some 
terrible massacres, feats of heroism, and half a dozen 
times has been the last stronghold of safety. Across 
the river from tlie old tower stands the treaty stone. 



440 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

now raised on a pedestal over the spot where it lay 
in 1692, when the treaty of Limerick was signed on 
it. Yet that treaty was not kept, nor is it yet ful- 
filled by the English; this is a lasting blot on Eng- 
land's character. 

The people delight to show a point in the wall 
where there had been a breach made by the English 
artillery, and the defenders had fallen. The Eng- 
lish were sure of victory, when the women, seeing 
the terrible danger, rushed to the breach and fought 
with such frenzy that they were driving the English 
back, when liel{) arrived and the city was saved; this 
was the last effort, and the English withdrew from 
the siege. The English soldiers said they never 
wanted to fight women again. This part of the is- 
land has seen many storms of foreign and domestic 
strife through all past history. On many of the hills 
are the ruins of watch towers, with strong walls en- 
closing one to five acres, in to which the sheep and 
cattle were driven at night. In time of war or civil 
commotions they could be run in on short notice from 
the tower, and a few resolute men could defend 
the enclosures for a short time against a large force. 
The sight of these old ruins keeps the sanguinary 
history of the country constantly before the mind, 
and at times mars the enj-oyment of the traveler. 
The city of two thousand years ago, the one Orom- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 441 

well besieged, is fast falling into decay. The new 
city is to the west of the old one, on level ground, 
and more modern in style. It is (inite a commercial 
point, and has little of the old Irish aspect left, but 
we saw a few forms moving amid the throng that 
seemed not of the masses; they looked Kke a superior 
race now nearly gone. They are the last of the 
chieftains, kings and nobles of Ireland, as given in 
song and story. 

From Limerick we went northwest to Ennis, 
then north to Athenry, a by-way of the orthodox 
route. It was our intention to run down to Galway, 
but we found it would make a break in our time table, 
so we left that point out. Gras^ grew by the road 
side, in the fields, on the hills and to the mountain 
tops, among the rocks, along the streams; in fact, 
grew everywhere, unless the ground was in actual 
cultivation. In every possible place fine cattle, sheep 
and hogs were seen grazing on the luxuriant grass. 
Since the great potato famine, a generation ago, more 
live stock has been grown and more hay made than 
previously. We visited a festive park at Athenry; 
it was a Catholic feast day, and thousands of people 
were out, mostly young persons, and they were a 
boisterous, roaring concourse. At least one man in 
fr>ur was drunk, and all were more or less under the 
the infiuence of liquor, and, sad to say, many nice, 
beautiful girls were half intoxicated and voluble in 
talk and sonsr. 



442 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

AVe now turned our faces east across the central 
district to Mullingar, near the middle of the island, 
to a country as beautiful as the^finest blue grass re- 
gion of America; on the wav, at Athlone, on Lake 
Kee, we saw another sample of Catholic festivals. 
Lake Ree is the ^reat storage basin of the Shannon 
river, and is a fine fishing and boating place. Many 
thousands of people were congregated there, boat- 
ing, fishing, drinking, dancing, fighting and storm- 
mg about. The regular and extra trains were 
crowded, and it seemed as though half the men were 
drunk. One of them got aboard in charge of a 
seven-year-old daughter, who managed him as though 
he were a pig tied to a string. When the conductor 
rame she handed him the tickets in simple, child- 
like innocence, and received kind words, not only 
from him, but from all. To me it was so horrid that I 
felt soiTowful all the evening, thinking of that child's 
sad fate. 

We spent the night at Mullingar, and next morn- 
ing started to Sligo, northwest, through the same suc- 
cession of beautiful, green hills and charming valleys 
until we approached Sligo, when we met with ranges 
of hills called by the natives mountains. They ex- 
tend all along the north coast, giving the country a 
picturesque appearance. These mountains are cov- 
ered with grass to the summit, and constantly call to 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 443 

miiid tlie contrast beween that country and Palestine, 
where there is so much desolation. We were now in 
the Protestant portion of Ireland; we noted the dif- 
ference in an hour's run. The farms were in better 
order, houses more comfortable, the people better 
dressed, more cattle and hogs in sight, and every- 
thing showed increased life, light and animation, 
Sligo, more celebrated by the bards in story than 
remarkable in histoiy, is a nice, clean place, if one 
does not go too far back into the town, but we found 
our ride through it very interesting. The two- 
wheeled jaunting car, or Irish cart, attains its high- 
est perfection in Sligo. The driver faces forward; 
two passengers sit on either side, back to back, look- 
ing toward the sides of the road. The seats are di- 
rectly over the wheels, the footboard a little lower 
than the hub and a foot wide. If a drunken man falls 
off, he pitches away from the cart, and is out of dan- 
ger of horses or wheels; it looks as though the cart 
and the diimken men were made for each other. 
For sober people it is jolly riding ten miles an hour 
over rough, stony roads, with a shrewd, quick-witted 
Irish driver, who is expert in his wild driving. If 
you are thrown from the seat, there is but two feet 
to fall, and it is quickly over and you remount with 
little effort. If you ever go to Ireland do not fail 
to take a ride of several miles in a jaunting car, over 
a mountain road, for it is grand. 



444 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

On our road from Sligo to Enniskillen and Lon- 
donderrj' we passed some rural scenes of mingled 
valley, mountain, hill and plain that would bring a 
golden harvest to an artist who could reproduce them 
on canvas and make them true to nature. Ennis- 
killen is a grand old town, with much of the past great- 
ness clinging to its old walls, and among the 
watch towers on the surrounding hills. It is one 
of the places which has seen some stormy history 
in the early Hebrew colonization, six to seven hun- 
dred years before our era. Londonderrv, though lu 
old place, has much of modern life; all the new por- 
tion is grr atly so. From that point we went to Port- 
stewarts, and there took an electric car for the great 
wonder, the Giant's Causeway; we were very for- 
tunate in having a bright, clear day, and the tide was 
out. At iirst we were disappointed in not finding 
things looking like the pictures in the school books, 
but after we went down the narrow, winding path 
by the cliff, and walked out on the strange fonna- 
tion and viewed the neighboring rocks, the striking 
and wonderful features began to appear, and the 
longer we looked the more interesting it became. 
There are three causeways; the larger one covers 
about two acres, extending out into the sea 400 feet. 
-Its highest i)oint is 50 feet, and it slopes with an easy 
grade, terminating abru})tly in the water. The blocks 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 445 

are two to six feet, twelve to twenty inches in diam- 
eter, all of them three to seven-sided, concave at one 
end and convex at the other, iitting as if made by 
hand as they stand on each other. Each block seems 
to have been made especially for its place. But the 
most astonishing things of all are the eight-sided key 
stones, which are pnt in at irregular intervals, seem- 
ingly as a necessity to keep up the regular adjust- 
ment of the other blocks. Everything seems to have 
been planned and completed with geometrical pre- 
cision, and we were slow to receive the truth, that 
it is the result of crystalization. It is little wonder 
that it was believed to be the work of a lost race 
of giants, for scattered along each side are immense 
bowlder nodules of cinder and slag, just like we see 
at iron furnaces, and there are great heaps of broken 
rock against the foot of the cliff, as if prepared for 
smelting and molding. In many places in the cliff 
and near the water line there are rudimentary blocks 
mixed in with slag. It is probable that the whole 
headland is a mass of crystals below the water line, 
and possibly it is all made of the same material and 
only covered with earth. Aside from the causeway, 
the vicinity is interesting. There are wild, rugged, 
projecting headlands, their perpendicular sides broken 
and wrecked by the shock of the great waves, or worn 
into caves and hollow channels, in which the sea roars 



446 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and thunders in tones of grand music to the ear which 
loves the terrible. From the top there is a magnifi- 
cent view inland over a rolling country, all under 
cultivation or in grass. Out to sea there are always 
steamers or sailing vessels in sight, with sea fowl 
wheeling above and below, and screaming on the 
wind. One can stand long amid the surroundings 
taking in the picture, which vdll be one of the bright 
ones that we lay away to keep, ^o American visit- 
ing Ireland should miss seeing the causeway, but he 
should be wary of employing the officious guide, keej) 
clear of hotel runners, use the carriage road from 
the station, and at the top of the hill take path down 
the cliff and be his own guide. 

From the causeway we turned south to Lake 
Xeagh (nuf), then east to Carrickfergus, a celebrated 
prehistoric place, then southwest up the bay of Bel- 
fast. On arriving in the city, we found a train ready 
to start to the old maternal home, near Balynalinch, 
which we boarded, and were landed in the town just 
before night. The consciousness of being so near the 
highest aspiration of childhood, to see the home of my 
Irish ancestors, and of the lost Albanoids, was so all- 
absorbing that I could not sleep. During the night 
I recalled the history of my race, and tried to fix in 
mind the relative locations in our family history, the 
better to find them the next day. Morning came 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 447 

with a steady rainfall that was sadly disappointing, 
but there was a compensating siirpnse, for as I sat 
looking out of the window, one-hoi'se cart^ came driv- 
ing by and stopping out in an open square not far 
away. Each cart contained four, nicely-dressed hogs, 
weighino- about 150 pounds. Then came other carts 
with four to six live sheep standing up in them, 
looking fat and clean. These were followed with 
more carts, with six to twelve nice, white pigs, all 
squealing and wriggling in a lively chorus. Then 
came companies of ten to twelve sheep driven slowly 
along; then five to twenty head of all kinds of cattle. 
All this was decidedly interesting. Upon inquiring 
of our hostess what the demonstration signified, we 
were told it was the monthly fair for the county 
(County Down), and that it always took place, rain or 
shine, and that what we saw here was a sample of 
all such fairs on the island. I borrowed an umbrella 
and went through the grounds among the hundreds, 
who, in spite of the rain, were there to buy or sell. 
It was interestine' to see and hear the shrewd, sharp 
trading and sallies of Irish wit, that came as natural 
as the breath. As in other , places, the women were 
the sharpest and most persistent traders. Their 
adroit maneuvering showed them, in many cases, to 
be far ahead of the whisky-drinking, tobacco-smok- 
ing men. Tlie cattle and sheep were equal to the 



448 LIFE AND '1 RAVELS 

best in America, and the pigs were tlie finest I had 
ever seen. There was a new industry, which seemed 
second to none in importance — the sale of second- 
hand clothing from America, with some from other 
countries. There was a large cpiantitj on hand, and 
much of it was sold. Most of it was good, and was 
bought very cheap. This is succeeding well, and 
enables many people to dress comfortably at small 
cost. In this connection it is interesting to know 
of the many presents of clothing that are sent from 
America to Ireland by Irish- Americans; when a na- 
tive re-visit8 his home he always take-^ presents to the 
''Old Folks." In my journey through the country 
I inquired of hundreds of grandfathers and grand- 
mothers amonp- all classes, and I did not find one 
person who had not relatives in America; there was 
not a single grandfather who had not more grand- 
(ihildren in America than in Ireland or any other 
country. Statistical home rulers say there are more 
Irishmen, Irish people, in America than in Ireland. 
Xearly every boy and girl grows up with the am- 
bition to go to America some day. This spirit of 
emigration is disastrous to the business of the coun- 
try, for no one seems to be settled for life. I can 
say that I have never been in any corner of the earth 
but there was Irish blood there. 

The second morning was bright and warm; I 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 449 

was up at daylight and away across the hills to find 
the lirst traditional landniarii of my ancestors — the 
old burial gix)und and ruined church. It was easily 
found, on a hill top a mile from town, and covered 
about two acres. It was still enclosed by a portion 
of the primitive wall, and a })art of the old temi)le 
wall l)uilt 1600 years ago, and some of the tomb stones 
are still standing. Xear by I located the xVlbanoid 
village that existed 2600 years ago, and was one of 
the prosperous communities. Nothing now remains 
but fragments of slate and building stones. Four 
miles away I found the well-defined outlines of a 
small city, whose history goes far back into prehis- 
toric times, though well rec^orded in Albanoid tradi- 
tion. It was counted a strong city when the first 
Hebrew emigrants came to Ireland, 900 B. C. This 
temple was built and burial ground enclosed at least 
2500 years before Christ, but how long the Alba- 
noids had been there before it was' built, tradition 
does not tell. This much is evident: their civiliza- 
tion and arts were in advance of the Hebrews in the 
days of Solomon. In their tradition they claim to 
have come to Ireland from the West, and describe 
their original home as being identical with Atlantis, 
the lost coMinent of the Atlantic. Whether this is 
a myth or a true history, their civilization was not Eu- 
ropean, Asiatic or Egyptian in its ongin. Modern 



450 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

or Christian tradition says that St. Patrick tiiraed 
the old "Heathen" temple into a Christian church, 
which was used for many centuries. 

I will he pardoned if I say that my enthusiasni 
reached the highest point when I really found my- 
self standing amid the sTaves of my lost ancestors, 
for with my glass I located the two beacon hills, from 
whose tops in ages gone had flashed out the signal 
lights by night and pillars of smoke by day, as signs 
of danger, at the approach of an enemy or coming 
storm, ^ot far to the soutliAvest stood the great 
watch tower to which the villagers retired as their 
stronghold in time of trouble, as well as to the tem- 
ple and its surrounding walls. As in the ages past., 
the beautiful hills Avere still clothed in grass, and 
thousands of cattle, sheep and hogs were gTazing, 
while the smoke was ascending from the stone chim- 
neys of hundreds of cottages, showing that human- 
ity, with all its hopes and fears, was still there. But 
I was carried away in a vision of the past that was 
overwhelming in its revelations, for once again the 
veil of "second sight" was drawn aside, and the hur- 
rying scenes of thousands of years appeared before 
me. All the fearful past was there in living light, 
which came rolling down to my very feet, and was 
too overpowering for my mind, strength and spirit. 
I had to crv to God to close tlie vision; thouah the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 451 

fiitniv niitiiit liave l)een revealed, I was too weak to 
bear it, nor do 1 (•ra^'e to know, for it will go down 
to its predestined end. My race may vanish, but 
the Lord will call his chosen Israel from Ireland, as 
well as from the whole earth, in the final restitution. 
When that \^sion closed, it seemed again that 
my life work was done, my highest hopes of earth 
had been realized, and my heart seemed satisfied. 
The remainder of the day was spent in walking over 
the hills and in visiting the old stone house in which 
my grandmother was born. It had been standing 
200 years, and it looked as though it would stand for 
many centuries more. It was built, like many othei^s, 
of solid masonry and a tile roof, which earthquakes 
alone will destroy. But now as I walked the hills I 
saw a double vision, as they were, and as they had 
been; each vision was alike real. The object of my 
visit to Ireland now seemed accomplished; I went 
once more to the old ruin, and as I stood in the midst 
of the burial gi\)und a feeling of inexpressible sad- 
ness came over me. I was probably the last of the 
now nearly extinct race who would ever see, or care 
to see, that silent and lone spot, and I turned away 
with a strange mingling of sorrow and joy, sorrow- 
ful at thought of the lost race, joyful that I had been 
permitted to stand at last among their graves. 

Later on in the dav I was slowh' retumina" to 



452 LIFE A^D TRAVELS 

the town, full of deep tlioiiglit, when I was suddenly 
startled by a new phase in experience. At the foot 
of the hill, at a turn in the broad highway, I found 
myself surrounded by eighty-two large fox hounds, 
trotting along the road. One huge fellow^ looked 
nie in the face with a friendly bow-wow and wag- 
to the tail, which removed my fear of danger; at the 
same time a much be-buttoned and uniformed keeper 
spoke, saying there was no danger from them. I 
had seen droves of all kinds of domestic animals, 
geese, ducks, turkeys and cranes, but not dogs, so 
I was curious to know something of the new indus- 
try, and learned that some of the landed gentry were 
going to have a grand fox hunt in a few days, on 
an estate not far away, and the hounds were being 
sent on in advance, to be in running trim by the day 
of the hunt. I wanted to know how much it would 
cost to keep one of those dogs, and was told as much 
as would board and clothe an ordinary man. Upon 
returning into the town, I made inquiry as to the num- 
ber of children who lacked bread and clothing, and 
the landlady said there were at least two hundred. 
This was an item among many others that I noted 
through all my travels, in . contrasting the two ex- 
tremes in the world of humanity. 

We left Balynalinch in the afternoon for Belfast 
to take steamer for Scotland. While awaiting the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 453 

steamer, I gained additional information from the 
Historical Society, which is making interesting dis- 
coveries in the seemingly-lost history of Ireland. 
Among the most so, is the authentic account of the 
early Hebrew immigration, the coming of the prophet 
Jeremiah when he fled from his rebellious brethren 
in Egypt with two of the king's daughters, the ark of 
the covenant, the coronation stone, and other sacred 
things. They, also, affirmed the authenticity of the 
Milesian tablets, and many lost records, all of which 
show Ireland, when fully understood, to be a most 
important historical country, but in a biography like 
this, such things are not in place. 

We took the steamer for Scotland, and crossed 
during the night, landing near Glasgow. Early next 
moraing v\'e went by rail to Bonnie Loch Lomond, 
then took steamer for the head of the lake. It was 
a splendid ride and the scenery surpassed Geneva, 
Como, Or any other lake that we had seen on the 
continent. The hills on either side are almost moun- 
tains, and come to the water's edge or look down on 
it from rugged cliifs and bold headlands, giving a 
touch of dark, romantic grandeur to many of its 
shadowy ravines. There are numerous islands and 
narrow passages, which are constantly adding new 
chamis to the seenery. We stopped a day at the 
head of the lake, and walked several miles up the 

29 



454 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

roaring, rocky river that comes down through the 
mountains. We passed a succession of falls, up which 
the mountain trout were leaping, and at one place 
they would clear a fall of live feet with a single spring. 
Most of them made it the first effort, others had to 
try the second and third time. It was a beautiful 
scene, for the glen was shady, deep and dark, hid 
away among the hills. Ben Lamond is almost a 
mountain, as he stands among the smaller hills in bold 
relief, calling up much of the le,2:ends and songs of 
the past, such as, "The sun has gane down o'er the 
loftv Ben Lomond,'' or "'The Campbells are coming 
from Ben Loch Lomand," etc., etc. These in turn 
brought to mind incidents in Scottish history and tra- 
dition, which furnLshed food for thouglit as well as 
delight for the eye. 

We returned to the lower end and took rail for 
Dundee, on the east coast, by way of Sterling, Dun- 
blain and Perth, through a fine, green country, over 
and among rolling hills and beautiful meadows, equal 
to the rural scenes in England, all in a high state of 
cultivation. From Dundee we traveled over the cel- 
ebrated Tay railroad, one of the wonders of engineer- 
ing skill. It crosses the Firth, and was the scene 
of a fearful disaster a few years ago, when a span 
of the bridge fell with a passenger train, and all were 
lost. I could not, realize the height of the bridge 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 455 

until I saw a three-masted, ship sail under it. It was 
a grand, but rather airy, ride over the broad expanse 
of water. We continued southward through a charm- 
ing country, and came to Edinburgh, where we 
crossed the last and greatest achievement in bridge 
building over the Firth of Forth. It is a combination 
between the cantilever and suspension bridge, the 
longest and highest of the kind in the world. The 
going over these two bridges filled the measure of 
our ambition in one direction: we had passed through 
the two longest tunnels, the Mt. Cenis and St. Goth- 
ard's, and now the two greatest railroad bridges ; while 
at Port Costo, Cal., had floated on the largest Jerry- 
boat, or boat of any kind, ever built by man. 

The stop in Edinburgh was full of interest; we 
were in motion most of the time, riding, walking and 
looking at the noted historic places which have figured 
for so many centuries. The wonderful castle of 
Edinburgh was considered almost impregnable until 
the invention of heavy guns, now its castles and 
towers would not stand a single day's cannonade 
from the top of Arthur's seat. I was especially glad 
to see the almost forgotten grave of «Iohn Knox. 
Everybody could tell where the house of John Knox 
was, but not one in ten knew where he was l)uried. 
It was too simple a thing for curiosity, no chance to 
collect a sixpence for showing it, so it is generally 



456 LIFE AND TKAVKLS 

unknown. It is marked by a bronze tablet a foot 
square, which is inserted in the pavement in front 
of his old church, and carts drive over it without a 
thought of who is buried there. 

AVe ^vent by rail from Edinburgh to Annan, near 
the celebrated city of Gretna Green, over the border, 
to see the largest nursery in Scotland, owned by Mr. 
Holms. John Van Lindley had met the proprietor 
in America, and he gave us a cordial welcome to his 
home, and a very pleasant day w^as spent in rambling 
over his extensiA^e grounds. He had just returned 
from a business trip to the United States, and could 
talk of home events. Adjoining his grounds w^as the 
ruins of one of the strongholds of Robert Bruce, 
and a secret passage had recently been discovered 
by which the garrison could go down to the river 
under ground, both for water and to escape. From 
Annan we crossed the country to the eastern coast 
at l^ewT'astle, and from there returned to London by 
way of York, arriving August 24th, 1892. 

Our work was done, our travels were ended; we 
had finished our program on time, had been in all 
the countnes and capitals of Europe, had seen and 
accomplished more than ordinary tourists, had es- 
capes! from all danger, seen and unseen. We had 
met with but few Ictsses or crosses. V)ut our minds were 
growing weary o^f the long strain and tension and 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 457 

needed rest. John Van Lindley wanted to see his 
wife and little ones, and be with his extensive fall 
work in his nursery. As i was cut off from my trip 
to the Caspian, Persia and Babylon by the cholera, 
1 too was readv for home. We spent a few days in 
London with our kind friends, John E. Watts and 
family, then bought tickets for New York by steamer 
''Ethiopia," Anchor line, and proceeded to Glasgow, 
where we went aboard and started September 1st, 
1892, at 5 p. m. The passage down the Clyde amid 
the long line of ship yai-ds was most entertaining. 
The steamer was towed by two powerful tugs, one in 
front and the other astern. In rounding the bends 
and points on the river, it was amazing to see the 
precision with which, the signals were given, and the 
promptness with which they wei'e heeded and exe- 
cuted by the tugs, each one pulling to an opposite 
point from the other, thus swinging the great ship 
as if revolving on a pivot. It was a display of per- 
fect marine science and skill. It was refreshing to 
look into the bronzed, but noble, honest faces of the 
clear-eyed, cool-headed engineers and seamen, who 
seemed to impart life and intelligence to the crafts 
beneath their feet. We crossed the channel through 
the night, and ran down the Irish coast to Movill, 
to take on passengers coming up the bay from Lon- 
donderry, in small coasting steamers. At 3 p. m. the 



458 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

second of September, we sailed out c»f the bay with 
over four hundred passengers headed for America. 
Soon after the last cape disappeared, a strong wind 
began to blow, and incre^ised steadilv all night, ^ext 
morning a heavy sea was running, and the ship rolled 
and plunged so violently that walkini>: on deck was 
very difficult for landsmen. All day the gale in- 
creased, and the second night was dark, cold and 
rainy, so that few passengers ventureil out. On the 
morning of the third day the gale grew worse, and 
became a regular storm; many were quite seasick, 
the worst sickness that men ever have, but the least 
dangerous. During the day the ship made slow 
headway against the violence of the storm. All hope 
of a pleasant voyage was given up, and the passen- 
gers began to settle down to the situation, and to 
cast about for some way to pass the time; but at 7 
p. m. all were suddenly alarmed by the engine stop- 
ping and the ship falling helplessly into the trough 
and rolling violently. Great anxiety seized the pas- 
sengers; each one wanted to know the cause, the ex- 
tent of the accident, and the possible danger. Word 
soon came that the main shaft of the propellor had 
given way, and it would take several hours to repair 
it. The ship was unmanageable, and began drifting 
before the wind. The rocking and plunging of the 
sea was so great that standing or walking was very 
difficult: signs of alarm were seen on everv face. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 



459 



That was a terrible night on those suffering 
with seasickness, and one of anxiety to those who were 
well. I had no sickness during the whole voy- 
age and was able to be out all the time, taking note 
of what passed. I could stand at the stern post an 
hour at a time and look out over the grandly sublime 
and terrible surroundings. When the ship was 
thrown aloft on the crest of the great swells, the 
eye could take in the perfect scene for miles around. 
A landsman has no language to describe it. Indeed, 
it would require something beyond words to convey 
an intelligent idea of such a spectacle, but this can 
be said — everything on earth grows small when com- 
pared with a first-class storm at sea. 

At 10 a. m. on the 4th, the glad sound of the 
low boom of the engine in motion sent a thrill of joy 
through the hearts of all, and the ship came around 
and once more headed westward. We had drifted 
thirty-tw^o miles eastward, but were in the lane of 
the steamers on the Glasgow route. Though the 
storm still raged and we were in a rough sea, we 
were glad to be in motion and feel the ship under 
control. But, alas! in a short time the shaft again 
gave way, and a second time we were at the mercy 
of the waves. To add to the gloom and sadness, it 
was soon known that the main shaft was broken, and 
it would take many hours, perhaps days, to repair 



460 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

it. It was now impossible for many to suppress fear 
or "conceal terror. Pale, sick faces looked up with 
sad, imploring eyes, yet the lips were closed; mothers 
nestled their little ones; stout-hearted men, who had 
hitherto looked brave and reliant, showed signs of 
nervousness and fear, though they seldom spoke. 
The morning" of the 5th came with the same dark, 
stormy sea, slowly drifting us helplessly away, this 
time out of the lane, where we might not be found 
for many days, if succor was sent from either end of 
the line. During the afternoon the storm increased, 
and the night came on dark and terrible, filling the 
bravest hearts with fear for the unseen horrors that 
seemed to close around us with the darkness. It was 
impossible to walk or stand up without holding fast 
to some support. Little children could not lie safely 
in their bunks w^ithout beine^ held; even men could 
not lie still in their berths in the bow and stern, 
where the tossing was most severe. The mothers, 
among the emigrants, sat down on the floor and held 
their children across their laps to prevent them from 
being thrown down. There w^ere several ladies 
aboard who suddenly developed into grand. Chris- 
tian characters. They went among the emigrants 
and encouraged the mothers who had little children 
to care for, and whose strens-th was failing and faith 
almost gone. Where least expected, tliere were scenes 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 461 

of sublime trust and Christian heroism, as well as 
abject fright and despair. One picture, the grandest 
of them all, was a middle-aged mother with four 
children. The infant was bound to her breast se- 
curely with a shawl, so that in death tl^ey would not 
be parted. The two next older ones were lying on 
either side, with their heads in her lap, holding tightly 
to her, and she to them. With tears slowly falling, 
she was gazing into their little, upturned faces, while 
bv her side a girl probablv eight or ten years old 
was clinging to her arm and looking at her mother, 
saying: "Manuna, don't cry; you know the Lord will 
not let you drown. He is too good for that ; you know 
He won't. Now do not cry, mamma." T'here was a 
supernatural, yes, a divine light, in those childish 
eyes, and her face was like the face of an angel. I 
felt in my heart, and said : 'No ship will sink with such 
faith and innocence aboard. There were many other 
touching scenes among the seemingly poor and lowly, 
giving evidence of true. Christian faith that put to 
shame the contemptible cowai-dice of the wide- 
mouthed unbeliever when he found himself near to 
almost certain death. Still another incident will be 
in place. In a room amidships wavS a lady with two 
bright little children, four and six years old. They 
had been confined to the room and in the ])unk most 
of the time by the storm, and the mother had shed 



462 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

silent tears while watching her children, who at last 
fell into a qniet sleep. When they awoke they looked 
lip into the mother's face and began to sing a child- 
like, cradle^ scmg. I had not slept for two days and 
nights, and was alive to all that was transpiring. 
When I heard the scmg of the children it seemed 
like the voice of angels from heaven telling me that 
all was well — in spite of the storm and the dark waves 
around us we were safe. 

During all this time brave men — the engineers 
and assistants — were down in the hold of the ship 
working with tireless arms and sleepless eyes on the 
broken shaft. Steel bolts had to be drilled and cut 
out, great iron bars and plates must be removed be- 
fore the work could be done. AVhile others w^ere suf- 
fering with terror or ccmrageously awaiting the end, 
I was, part of the time, quietly but eagerly listening 
to the whir of the drill, the heavy thud of the maul 
and the sharp, quick stroke of the hammer on the 
chisel^ which sounds came up a ventilating pipe ^dth 
the distinctness of a telephone. In this way I knew 
the extent of the damage, the difficulty to overcome, 
and the extreme danger we were in if the cargo should 
shift its place. In the depressed and excited condi- 
tion of many of the passengers, it would have been 
disastrous for them to have known what the pipe was 
telling me, for it would have caused a panic that 
could not be controlled. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 463 

About 3 a. m. on the 6tli, I went on deck to see 
if there was any prospect of the storm abating. 
Everything aronnd was awe-inspiring, jet grand; we 
were wallowing in the trough of the waves and roll- 
ing so that the deck would almost stand perpendicu- 
lar, and I seemed to be hanging against a wall instead 
of standing on my feet. Twice it seemed impossible 
for the vessel to right itself when struck by the heavy 
seas. A part of the cargo was pig iron, which was 
put in the bottom, the bulky part on it. This made 
the center of gravity down near the keel, so when 
the vessel was careened and began to go down the 
keel sank the fastest and righted the ship every time, 
and this it was that saved us. But it was trying on 
the nerves to st>aiid on the deck under such circum- 
stances aud see death, as it were, at arm's-length and 
coming right in. Heart, nerves, faith and courage 
have to be well drilled, or nature will recoil under 
such circumstances. At the end of two hours the 
wind began to slacken and I could stand on deck, and 
the shock of the waves was less violent. By 6 a. m. 
the woather had so moderated that the rolling of the 
ship was gTeatly lessened, and the strong and active 
could walk about. This seemed to revive the hopes 
and courage of all, especially the weaiy mothers, 
whose bodily strength was well nigh gone. Soon 
cheerful conversation was heard, pleasiant greetings 



464 LIFE A>iD TRAVELS 

and anxious inquiries made for friends in different 
parts of the ship, and to still more revive the weary 
hearts and hands, a young lady in the isfternoon giave 
some cheerful music on the organ, but when she arose 
from the stool a sudden lurch of the ship threw her 
down with such force that she was seriously injured. 
That evening the table was set and several ventured 
out, as regular meals could now be resumed, though 
the racks had to be kept on- the table to make it pos- 
sible to keep the plates and cups in place, and with 
the greatest precautions there were many amusing 
mishaps of spilt coffee, tea, soup, gravy, etc. etc., caus- 
ing much merriment, notwithstanding the serious 
surroundings. 

The morning of the 7th was dark and gloomy. 
The wind freshened for a few^ hours and another 
storm seemed near, but by noon the clouds began 
to break away, and through the rifts broad streams 
of sunlight flashed, lighting up the waves with daz- 
zling brightness. During the afternoon the wind 
ceased and the sea went rapidly down; the continued 
showers of sunlight were cheering and reviving to all. 
The next morning was dark and rainy, but the rain 
soon ceased and the sunlight came out, and there was 
now a long, heavy roll, that was not unpleasant after 
90 much violence. The passengers came out on deck 
with pale, but ha])py, faces, p-lad to feel safe after 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 465 

die hcjiirs of peril, aud ready for a bath of wann 
yriiiliiilit. The little children ran about with totter- 
ingMeps but joyous faces, happy to be safe once more, 
though weak from the ordeal they had passed through. 
September 9th came in with a beautiful sunrise, 
and the sea was almost calm. Everybody came out 
or was carried out, to enjoy the beautiful day, and 
the children, true to childhood and innocence, filled 
the air with glad shouts, sweet songs and romping 
play. To add to the general joy, the captain an- 
nounced that the last bolt was in place, and we would 
start in a few hours. A glad cheer w^ent over the 
water; soon all w^as life and joy where it had been 
fear and danger. At half past nine the engine 
throbbed and boomed, the signal bell rang, and again 
a glad shout rang through the ship as the regular 
sounds of the engine were heard. There seemed to 
be another lease of life ; the children ran in high glee, 
slapping their hands and shouting, "She's started! 
She's started I Hurrah! Hurrah!" and away and 
around they ran beyond control. In fact, no one 
wanted them controlled, for they but expressed the 
feelings of all ages. In a few hours the young people 
began promenading and the older ones to collect in 
groups, talking in subdued tones or sitting* in silence 
in the bright sunshine, looking serene and happy. 
As I gazed on the beautiful scene which lay before 



466 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

me, I could but ask: Who, of all the hundreds who 
were rejoicing over their deliverance, thought of the 
brave engineers who had toiled night and day through 
these hours of danger, re|3airing the broken shaft 
with unwearied arm, steady hand, sleepless eye and 
noble souls. Alas! I feared but few. Too often 
the self-sacrificing toilei*s are neglected or forgotten 
in this life, but in that which is to come, when jus- 
tice is meted out to all, they will wear the laurel crown. 
After supper on the evening of the 9th, life 
aboard the ship was deeply interesting. The re- 
bound in feeling was sudden and wonderful. In the 
dining room small groups of six to ten were gathered 
in cheerful conversation; music was heard overhead, 
which had a more lofty and triumphant tone than 
before; there was sweeter melody in the close of each 
rounded refrain. The children's voices were softer 
and their faces brighter as they discussed their pic- 
ture books and toys. Among the emigrants there 
were glad voices, glad songs and glad hearts, and 
their children breathed sweeter, higher music, for 
it came from hearts acquainted with sorrow and pain. 
To me, as I sat silently listening, or slowly walking 
to and fro, the evidence of joy for our deliverance 
more than paid for all the anxiety and privation we 
had endured, for all had come through the wiser and 
better from the trial of nerve and faith. The Chris- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 467 

tian was stronger than ever before; the unl>eliever 
hung his head with a conscious shame for his cow- 
ardice in time of danger. He had leai-ned that death 
to him was but a plunging into darkness, whik^ to 
the Christian it was passing from darkness to light. 

We were adrift, after the shaft broke, eighty- 
eight hours, during which time the engineers never 
quit work. The emergency was so great and so many 
lives at stake they could not, nor did they want to, 
rest. Diuing the weary hours there were many 
amusino; and ludicrous mishaps constantly occurring 
that broke the monotony. Sometimes a boastful pas- 
senger who tried to defy seasickness, the storm, God 
and man, would be sent sprawling on deck or cabin 
floor, or suddenly collapse in his defiance of death, 
and present such abject terror in his looks that all 
were either amused or disgusted. There are few 
situations that will test Christian faith more thor- 
oughly than being adrift or in a wreck in a storm 
at sea. The dark water has no horror for the Chris- 
tian; death by drowning is quick and painless, and 
to the Christian it is but a passing over to where there 
is no sea, no storm and no more change, while the 
unbeliever shrinks back from the dark gulf, for to 
him there is no light or hope beyond. This makes 
him the more contemptible and pitiable when his ani- 
mal courage fails. 



468 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

On the morning of the 11th a gladsome cry ran 
through the ship, ''Sail, aho!" Sail, aho!" a:nd sure 
enough, not far away the steamer ''Circassia" was 
seen bearing down upon us in majestic style. It 
was a grand sight to watch it rise and fall on the 
great swells, with signal flags flying in answer to our 
call. Soon a boat was lowered and pulled away to 
the ship, for both vessels were now lying to. All 
eyes and all glasses were in active use. The ''Cir- 
cassia" was much surprised to meet us in mid-ocean 
when we should have been in xs^ew York. AVe were 
truly glad that we were found, and to hear from the 
far-ofl" world once more, and were gratified to know 
that our situation and safety could noAv be cabled 
to both worlds. At the end of an hour our boat re- 
turned, laden with needed supplies, beef, pork, cheese, 
ice, etc. The ships then steered away, the ''Circas- 
sia" for Glasgow and we for New York, now 1,800 
miles distant. AVe were forced to sail on slow time 
to avoid further accident — ten miles an hour — but 
the remainder of the voyage was very pleasant and 
enjoyable; music, games on deck, couA^ersation, dis- 
cussion and controversy on the politics on both con- 
tinents was indulged in. The weather continued 
good, with thunderstorms enough to give us some 
very beautiful sunsets; we also saw the singular phe- 
nomenon of lightning strike the waters, once not far 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 469 

away. There were several western passengers who 
were nearly always out in time to see the sun rise 
each morning, and talked much of its beauty. We 
were greatly astonished one day wh^n an 18-year- 
old son of one of the first families of New York 
asked what was meant by "Sunrise." He had never 
seen one, so the next morning he was called up to 
witness it. After looking at it for a time with won- 
der and delight, he innocently asked if the sun always 
rose that way. 

In the forenoon of the 19th we were met by 
a pilot boat, which had been sent at the proper time, 
as our whereabouts had been cabled from Glasgow, 
and, therefore, they knew just when to meet us. 
The morning of the 21st we sighted Sandy Hook, 
and were soon anchored at quarantine. When the 
health officer came aboard he was surprised to find 
every person sound and well, as far as sickness was 
concerned, rightly judging that if there had been 
germs of cholera aboard they would have developed 
in twenty-one days. On the 2 2d we landed once 
more on solid ground, and almost everyone made 
haste to telejoraph home. Finding that I was safe 
and sound, I did not rush home like some, but came 
through northern New York and the fruit region 
of Canada, and thence to Detroit ; from there to Rich- 
mond, Indiana, attended Indiana Yearly Meeting, 

30 



470 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

then started for Indianapolis, but wa- captured by a 
cousin on the way and delayed for a day and night. 
1 finally reached home, in better health than when 
I left ten months before, ha^dng traveled 32,000 miles 
by railroad and steamship, beside much by carriage, 
horseback, street car and on foot. 

At home I found another precious little grand- 
daughter, a few^ w^eeks old, with which the other chil- 
dren had arranged a surprise for grandpa; this was 
nicely done, and all was joy and rejoicing. Yet I 
could hardly believe that it was all reality, but the 
events of the last ten months were real and not a 
dream. When I met my friends at Richmond and 
received their warm congratulations, it seemed past 
belief that it was I, instead of a more gifted one, who 
had accomplished the wonderful journev under such 
unlooked-for conditions. Among my neighbors, with 
whom I had toiled and struggled through long years 
of privation and hardship, it was a matter of sur- 
prise that I alone should be the favored one and 
able to succeed in carrying out early aspirations, and 
this, too, without wealth or outside influence. Yea, 
it was marvelous in our eyes, and we simply said, the 
Lord helped. 

When a few weeks later I returned to Guilford 
College to spend the winter, it was no less an aston- 
ishment to mv old childhood associates that I had 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 471 

returned alive from what to tliem seemed a miracu- 
lous iouruey, especially those of my own age, who 
had remained near their childhood homes. Often 
when addressing large companies of bright-faced 
eager children, I felt a strange sensation at my heart 
when I realized that they looked upon me as a won- 
derful old man, while I saw myself as one of them 
sixty years ago. 




CHAPTER THIRTEEN. 



Visit to Yucatan and Southern Mexico — Coasting 
Voyage Around the Gulf — Visit to Chichen-Itza 
Ruins — In Merida Again — Uxmal Ruins — The 
National Festivals — The Homeward Journey. 

In early life I borrowed and read part of Mr. 
Stephen's account of his visit to the ruins of South- 
ern Mexico and Yucatan, and afterward when B. M. 
Norman published his ''Rambles in Yucatan/' in 
1842, I purchased the book, read and re-read it with 
the deepest interest. Through all the intervening 
years, everything t(uiching upon that wonderful re- 
gion was eagerlv read and enjoyed; a desire to see 
for myself became one of life's ideals. Like nearly 
all other readers of books of travel, I had taken it 
to be true without question that Egypt, Palestine, 
Syria, Greece and Italy held the oldest ruins in the 
world, and in my early dreams of travel placed them 
first and those of Central America last on the list. 
So my life work began slowly and went on through 
the weary years of toil, disappointment and suffer- 
ing, as heretofore set forth, until the time came when 
(472) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 473 

opportunity- opened np for me to finally realize my 
last fond dream. 

It seemed as though a special Providence had 
prepared the way for my trip to Yucatan. A niece, 
Jnlia L. Ballinger, had been engaged in establish- 
ii.g a Friends' Mission for Girls at Matamoras, Mex- 
ico. She had been there twelve years, and had mas- 
tered the Spanish language, as well as the Mexican 
Spanish. She was also conversant with the prevail- 
ing diseases of the climate, and the proper remedies, 
so she conld be interpreter and doctor. Upon corre- 
sponding with her I found that a time had come in 
her work when she could and would take a vacation, 
and that she would be able to start on short notice. 

I left Amo, Indiana, the morning of December 
19th, 1895. At Indianapolis I took the Big Four 
Hailroad for St. Louis, and from there went by the 
Iron Mountain route to Little Rock, Arkansas, and 
to Galveston, Texas, on the gulf, making close con- 
nection, but arriving on time after traveling forty- 
fc^ur hours. I was much disappointed to find the 
steamer delayed by a storm down the coast. When 
it came, in two days, it had to go to Morgan ( 'ity 
and return, causing a vexatious delay of eight days- 
While waiting for the boat, the time was taken up 
in exploring the island and learning the history of 
the city, picking up items of interest along the dock, 



474 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

listening to sailors' yarns and witnessing the half- 
barbaric celebration of Christmas, which was in strik- 
ing contrast to that of northern cities. 

On the morning of December 29th the steamer 
returned and took a krge amount of freight for 
Brownsville, and one passenger, but woe to me! I 
was doomed to another delay. We were scarcely out 
to sea when an ugly thunderstorm came up, making 
it so dark one could not see to read, and soon a hur- 
ricane began to blow with a deafening roar that was 
gTand and inspiring, thoup'h at times rather violent. 
The steamer had to lay to and double anchor. All 
night the thunder boomed, the cordage about the 
ship hummed like harp strings, the rain fell in tor- 
rents, and outside the waves dashed and roared, keep- 
ing time with the deep-toned thunder. I began to 
think I was a lineal descendant of Jonah, for of 
seven voyages I had made, six of them were stormy. 
On the 30th the sun rose bright and clear over the 
troubled sea, the wind was falling, and about 8 a. 
m. we steamed on again, but kept under shelter of 
the land imtil noon, then stood off, for we had bright, 
cool weather overhead, though the sea was still, chop 
and rough. 

The Gulf of Mexico has its peculiar character- 
istics. There is not room to get up waves as in mid- 
ocean, but there is space for the vicious West India 



UF ADDISON COFFIN. 475 

tornado, which, comes on with a sharp, shrill scream 
like the scape valve of a locomotive, whizzing and 
twanging like a bow-string, blowing all around a per- 
son at once, and is as hard to face as a iirst-class 
blizzard on the great plains, the driving rain being 
as blinding as snow. 

The sea still being quite rough, the steamer an- 
chored three miles off the bar at Point Isabel, early. 
New Year's Day, 1896. I stepped into the little boat 
and was carried ashore with the mail bags, through 
the chop sea on the bar, and landed once more on 
solid ground. But alas! for me again; the morning 
train was gone and there was no other till 4 p. m. 
A pleasant sui^Drise awaited me in my use of the 
Quaker language. I attracted the attention of a sea 
captain, who accosted me at once in his mother tongue, 
saying he was descended from one of the Nantucket 
tribes. He soon called others, so that shortly there 
gathered about quite a circle of descendants from 
Nantucket, Pennsylvania and North Carolina. Many 
were glad to hear the language of childhood, and 
all were pleased to talk over ancestral reminiscences, 
and what seemed still more pleasing and interesting 
to them was the family genealogy that I could give 
them, much of which they had not known, and now 
they could locate some of the lost kinsfolk. So pleas- 
antly did the time slip by that the day was gone 



476 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ere we were half satisfied witli the unexpected re- 
union. Among the family names reviewed were 
Macy, Kennedy, Folger, Worth, Bunker, Barker, 
Wheeler, Starbuck, Hussey, etc., etc. 

Point Isabel is a small, straggling village, built 
on a sandy point almost surrounded by water, noth- 
ing within itself, but historic from being the place 
where General Taylor started on his invasion of Mex- 
ico. The embankments of his fortifications still show. 
In its streets, and on all the sand banks, I was first 
introduced to the fan-leaved cactus, which I saw in 
different forms for two thousand miles thereafter. 
The railroad across the neck to Brownsville is narrow 
gauge, and much of it built on piling driven into the 
marshland, which is partly covered with water. On 
every side were vast numbers of water fowl, which 
would sometimes darken the sun when they took wing. 
It was a bright afternoon, and memories of local 
events vivid. We passed over the ground where 
General Taylor gained his first victories in the cele- 
brated Mexican war, the result of which changed in- 
directly the destiny of the Anglo-Saxon race. My 
niece met me at the station in Brownsville. She had 
come over from Matamoras with several of her friends, 
who, together with other citizens of good old Nan- 
tAicket, Xorth Carolina, Ohio and Indiana names, gave 
me a warm, kindly reception, with the heartv hand- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 477 

shake of pioneer days. 1 spent the night in Browns- 
ville, and at the solicitation of the minister of the 
Episcopal church, agreed to give a lecture on Pales- 
tine the coming Saturday night. The next morning 
we crossed the river in a row boat, took street car, and 
were trotted across a low, alluvial soil, one mile 
into Matamoras. 

My niece and Miss Anna Dysart, matron 
of the Presbyterian Mission, had arranged for me 
to stop there while in the city. Miss Dysart, like 
mv niece, had been instrumental in building up their 
missions, and knew all the privations and disappoint- 
ments incident to work in Mexico. My brief so- 
journ under Miss Dysart's care was very pleasant and 
will long be remembered. Through her kindness I 
was introduced to many of her friends. Miss Bal- 
linger also introduced me to our consul and many city 
officials, by whose combined kindness I was dined, 
visited and talked to, to my utmost capacity. 

From Matamoras the program of our trip was 
to be perfected. Accordingly we consulted the maps 
of the countrv, the possibility of travel, for be it 
known that travel in Mexico, other than by railroad 
and on foot, is very slow, rough and uncertain busi- 
ness. The roads are bad in every sense of the Avord, 
often passing over long distances without inhabitants 
or place of rest, so it requires much planning and a 



478 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

knowledge of where and how to go. It is impossi- 
ble for an American, especially one born in the Ohio 
Valley or Lake region, to know how different the world 
of nature and humanity is in Mexico from anything 
he has seen at home, for in Mexico many trees, bushes, 
plants, vines, grasses and flowers are armed, and there 
are thorns and poisonous juices and l^erries, while 
men are armed with guns and knives. Then, too, 
animals, reptiles and insects are vindictive and ag- 
gressive, so that it requires much thought when you 
propose taking a trip of a few thousand miles through 
such a country. 

Matamoras being a tvpical Mexican city with 20,- 
000 inhabitants, I took a few lessons in every-day 
life while I stayed there. I formed some acquain- 
tance with it« miserably poor people, its dirt, dogs 
and fleas, all mingling in one common herd. While 
thus engaged Mr. Gorman, our consul, was very kind 
and attentive in aiding me. He, too, was a traveler, 
and we had been over much the same ground. He 
was a fluent talker, a plausible reasoner, and gave me 
many valuable items for the journey south. I also 
met Dr. McMannus, who could speak many languages, 
a traveler and noted chemist, then in government 
employ. He was a shrewd reasoner and a judge of 
liumanity. He, too, gave me many way marks and 
suggestive ideas that were valuable further on. My 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 479 

talk at Brownsvilk had called up old memories m 
our past lives, and our adventures and the fountain 
of memory was unsealed, and we became kinJred 
spirits. 

On the morning of January 6th, lS9(i, we started 
on our long trip. My niece, Julia Ballinger, completed 
the details of the journey by many ne<.*essary additions 
to our outtit, in cases of emergency or accident. We 
took rail and ran up the Rio Grande river seventy- 
five miles, through a level, rich country, thinly set- 
tled, but capable of almost limitless production if 
properly cultivated, especially in corn. 

Then we took stage for Monterey, two hundred 
miles away. The stage trip proved to be full of 
interest, hardship and novelty. The coach was drawn 
by two, three or four mules, as necessity required, 
sometimes driven by headlong, wild drivers. The 
stages were clumsy, uncomfortable and rickety; the 
roads were very rough in places, sideling, rocky, full of 
deep chucks and gullies. We traveled day and night, 
on level ground, at a fast tr<:)t, down hill at a break- 
neck run, making the old stages sway and bounce 
so that it was almost impossible to keep one's seat. 
On two of the relays of twenty miles there were 
out-riders used — men mounted on strong, active mules, 
with twelve feet of rope attached to their saddles and 
to the end of the tongue of the stage. When the 



480 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

driver snapped his long whip the wheel mules started, 
the oiit-riders applied their spnrs, and we were off 
with a wild bound. 

One cool, bright, afternoon, the road led across 
a wide, rolling plain, covered with an immense growth 
of prickly pear, with the fruit nearly ripe. The 
out-riders wore broad-brimmed hats anl red blankets, 
which fluttered and flashed in the sunlight as we 
dashed dow^n the long slopes with shouts and yells 
that seemed to enter into the spirit of the mules, for 
they stretched out in a long, steady run, and for 
the time seemed unconscious of weariness. Such a 
run of four to six miles down a seemingly boundless 
plain is calculated to arouse the spirits of any one 
fond of wild, free life. What mattered it; for the 
time being we were thrown in all directions and 
wildly grasped at everything in sight. But we for- 
got it all and entered into the spirit of the surround- 
ings; yet .when it was all over it made us think of 
Horace Greely when old Haunk M<:»nk drove him 
over the Sierras. 

The larger poi^tion of the staging was across a 
rich, almost unoccupied cactus plain, capable of sup- 
porting a dense population if properly imgated. The 
small villages we passed were mostlv made up of mis- 
erable huts, destitute of comfort, where children, 
dogs, pigs, and donkeys mingle on terms of friendly 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 481 

equality. The nights were quite cool, and there was 
not a single place where we could get wann. Twice 
a shovel of live coals was dropped on the dirt Hoor 
over which we warmed our feet, while half-dressed 
children were rolling in the dust, seemingly "face all 
over," as they heeded not the cold. One part of our 
oiittit was a colfee stewer. At the relays my niece 
would put her coffee and water in the pot, go into 
a hut and put it on a tripod over the small tire, and 
while it came to a boil talk to the wondering women 
and children, who had never seen an American lady 
do so before, and they seemed to count it an event 
in their lives, and invariably asked for the coffee 
grounds after we had used them, out of which they 
would have a small feast. Everywhere the jx>or, de- 
oraded women ha<l a kind word for my niece at 
parting. She talked to them in their own lan- 
guage, and they felt in their hearts that she had a 
pitying sympathy for them. The little dirty, black- 
eyed children gathered around and looked up with 
a momentary flash of humanity in their faces. 

At Monterey we took rail for Mexico City, 700 
miles further on. The route lay, part of the time, 
through one of the well-cultivated valleys, where 
there were fields of wheat, rye and barley, and thous- 
ands of acres being plowed for corn, but in most 
places the work is done after the old primitive way 



482 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

— no iiiachineTv, no labor-saving tocds of any kind. 
It was a very interesting trip, as it took me tlirougk 
a new section of the country, giving me a still wider 
knowledge of our next door neighbors southward. 
The average American has an incorrect idea of Mex- 
ico because it is down in one comer of the map. 
When seen and traveled c>ver it is a large place, cap- 
able of great advancement, and of supporting mil- 
lions of people. 

We arrived in Mexico in the morning, and be- 
fore the train stopped five dogs boarded and came 
into our car, eagerly hunting for anything eatable. 
When we stepped off there w^ere enough dogs in 
sight to be five each for all the other cars, and beer- 
gars more repulsive and thievish than dogs, thrust- 
ing themselves forward, and last, but equally annoy- 
ing, the tricky, treacherous porters swarmed around. 
We found the home of Dr. Johnson, who formerly 
lived at Matamoras, and was known to my niece. 
He and his family bade us welcome, and we had a 
pleasant home during our stay in the city. Mexico 
is a wonder within itself, and becomes more so when 
contrasted with other cities on the continent. In 
all its general outlines it is distinctively Moorish, and 
belongs to the time of the Moors in Spain. The 
railroads, street cars and electric lights are out of place, 
when compared with its internal structure and the 



OF ADDJSON COFFIN. 483 

daily life of its people. Six years had passed since 
1 was in the city. The changes that had come in 
that time were tangible evidence that there was yet 
hope of a better day for the Republic. The num- 
ber of vehicles had largely increased, the fine Eng- 
lish coaches had doubled, street cars had trebled, 
express wagons had become a necessity, the fire de- 
partment had been improved, the soldiers were cleaner 
and under better drill, the number wearing Ameri- 
can clothes had increased, American residents had 
doubled, foreigners were treated with more civility^ 
and many of the animosities and antagonisms were 
disappearing; yet the peculiar type of humanity 
formed by the amalgamation of Spanish and Indian 
will continue for many a day. We still noticed fully 
twenty different physiognomies, and the same num- 
ber of languages were spoken in the market. The 
gradation is from the highest type of pure Castilian 
nobility down to the little, black, dwarfish mountain 
Indian, w^hose humanity, in some eases, is but one 
remove above a well-trained shepherd dog. We were 
pleased with one feature of city life, as seen on the 
streets, in the churches and befoi^ civil law — the 
miserable begirar and dw^arf Indian are accorded equal 
rights and privileges everywhere, to go and come, to 
seek life, liberty and happiness. 

To a thinking, observing American, all of Mexico 



484 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

is interesting, for everything is in contrast to the 
United States. The daily vocations, and even the 
tools used, are different from ours. There are five 
ways of yoking cattle to a plow or cart, and none 
of them are as we do it. Instead of cutting their 
grain, they pull much of it up, root and all. They 
are still using the treading floor and hand flail in- 
stead of steam separators ; in this way they are like the 
people of Spain and Egypt. The primitive plows 
used in the days of Abraham are yet ^een in the val- 
leys of Mexico. In the streets of the city the porter 
goes pacing by with great loads on his back; the lit- 
tle donkey carries the same shaped bundle, has the 
same rambling gait that his elder brother has in Cairo, 
Egypt, Damascus and Syria. 

There are many things in and aroun<l the city 
such as churches, chapels, cath-edrals, shrines and 
historical places that are very entertaining, but none 
had so much interest for me as the great National 
Museum, with its collection of relics of the wonder- 
ful prehistoric past, which the government is gath- 
ering from all parts of the Republic; the curiosities 
had visibly increased in quantity and quality. The 
great calendar stone is the wonder of the wonders; 
next to it the image of Ohack Mull, found at Chi- 
chen, in Yucatan, by Le Plongeon, and confiscated 
by the government; then comes the colassal head of 



OF AJkDISON COFFJxV. 485 

(liorite stone, staiidiiig three feet liigli, wliicli is an 
object of study to archaeologists. Its history and 
significance, like the others, is yet a mystery. The 
scientist and general reader hnds in Mexico a mine 
of hidden knowledge. As we walked among the 
ruins of the past, the desire to know^ what lav beyond 
our reach was constantly intensified by new discov- 
eries that upset favorite theories. 

The murderous and treacherous spirit of the 
Spaniard was imparted to the conquered Indians, and 
the worst element of the Indian was absorbed by 
the Spaniards; then this unfortunate combination fell 
under the influence of the woi-st characters of the 
Roman Catholic church, and was doubl}^ poisoned 
by it^ superstitions, and this polluted mass vented its 
venom on the dumb relics of the lost, prehistoric civ- 
ilization, w^hich destruction now fills the thinking 
world with loathing and indignation. Many speci- 
mens of architectural beauty bear the mark of the 
sledge hammer, wielded by a blood-thirsty, bigoted 
(^atholic priest, or by his order it has been shivered 
by gunpowder. When I recall the history of the 
Spanish race in the past, and see the fruits of its con- 
quests, it fills me with horror. In Mexico they con- 
quered a superior race and left them far worse than 
they found them. There would be more hope for 
the people of Mexico to-day were they intelligent 

31 



486 ' LIFE AND TRAVELS 

atheists instead of Roman Catholics. It would be far 
better for the government if every Catholic priest 
was forever banished; there would be more hope of 
building up free schools and a stable government, 
and of arresting and reforming the terrible state of 
iimnoralitj that exist everywhere^ for it makes 
the heart sick t-o know the amount of wickedness 
and impurity that can be laid at the door of the 
Catholic church in Mexico. 

Our next journey was by way of Puebla and 
Jalapa to Vera Cruz, through a beautiful valley and 
tolerably well-cultivated country. The people were 
still treading out the rye a,nd l)arley on the tread- 
ing floor; shocks of rye were standing thick in some 
iields, which was harvested two month>i before, with 
a month of dry weather still ahead. The whole pro- 
cess of harvesting and threshing was just like I had 
seen in Spain and Portugal. AVe stopped a day in 
Puebla, a beautiful city of 120,000 inhabitants, with 
a cathedral not surpassed in beauty by anything on 
the continent. It was verv interesting to watch the 
effect of this imposing edifice upon the poor, degraded 
mountaineers when they entered the building for 
the first time. They came from huts and caves where 
cleanliness is unknown, and where misery and want 
make up their live.s. When they entered the splen- 
did hall with its dazzling beauty, and heard the soft, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 487 

sweet music rising and floating away, the scene was 
to them what a vision or a visit of a convoy of angels 
would be to spiritual Christians, when engaged in 
their solemn worship. So startling and overwhelm- 
ing was the impression made upon them that ever 
after they w^ere the willing slaves of the priest, who 
had them under his oare; his word was law; to them 
he was their highest ideal of God. 

Mne miles from Puebla is the celebrated pyramid 
of Cholula, supposed to be the largest structure ever 
built by man. Knowing that there were doubts 
about it being an artificial mound, I was prepared 
to look with an impartial eye, though rather wish- 
ing it to be artificial, but in ten minutes after reach- 
ing it, the mistake was apparent, for the whole out- 
line of the mound, its relation to other natural hills 
in the vicinity, was proof of its natural formation. 
It is the last of a line of detached hills, projecting 
into the valley from the mountains to the west. 
The axis of the line comes straight to Cholula, yet 
it is evident the hill has been terraced and adorned 
as a place of resort by all the generations of people 
inhabiting the. country for thousands of years. 
Though I was somewhat disappointed in finding it 
a natural mound, I could but admire the taste and 
ideal judgment of all the people of the past in se- 
lecting it as a resort or place of . worship, for there 



488 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

are few more cliariniiig and beautiful. It is in the 
niidst of a romantic valley, while rising high above 
the mountain range stands Popocatepetl, covered with 
perpetual snow, which crowns the scene with a splen- 
dor that is almost intoxicating in its effect on any 
lover of the sublime. 

In Puebla we had an experience with dishonest 
porters, who attempted to extort and defraud, but 
Julia was equal to the emergency. She bade 
me watch the luggage while she found a guard, 
and in a few minutes had the thievish brutes scat- 
tered like frightened curs, and all was well. On 
the way from Puebla to Jalapa we passed thousands 
of acres of the maguay, or century plant, from which 
the vile pulque, the national drink, is made. It 
was in rows from six to ten feet apart, and presented 
a novel sight. As food, it is as worthless to Mexico 
as tobacco is to the States. This intoxicating drink 
is as imbruting to the Mexicans as tobacco to white 
people. 

Jalapa is an old Spanish town built on the side 
of a hill so steep that there are no public carriages 
in use, and l)ut one street car line. It is located 
in the heart of the banana and coffee region, where 
everything in sight is in strong contrast with the 
wide cactus plains passed in coming to that ])oint. 
There we wei-e first introduced to the perpetual green 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 489 

of the sub-tropieal growth. The change was as sud- 
den as it was delightful. We looked with glad hearts 
upon our new surroundings; every form of organic 
life had altered, and we seemed to have entered a 
new world, where vegetable and animal life appear 
to be governed by new laws, and where humanity 
merely vegetate. The banana fields on the mountain 
side, with coffee orchards, form a beautiful pano- 
rama. As we wound in many a graceful curve of 
wonderful engineering skill over and among the ever- 
green mountains, we drank in the glorious scene 
until w^e began to feel as if we were paid for the 
long journey. As we gradually emerged from the 
mountain scenery, we had glimpses of the lowland, 
and were soon 2:oing down grade to the tangled for- 
ests and impenetrable jungles with which they are 
covered. In many places the growth was so thick 
that a man could not cut his way a hundred feet 
an hour, and nearly all the plants are unknown in 
the states. We felt that the slower the train the 
better, for it gave opportunity to take in more of the 
wonders that were flitting by. Our car windows 
were all open, and the hot sunshine came in with 
astonishing intensity, especially when we remembered 
the zero w^eather in the Ohio Valley. Amid such 
surroundings we were hurried across wide expanses 
of i>Tass land, with cattle feeding on the ever-green 



490 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

pastures, and stretches of naked, hot sand, stagnant 
lagoons, until suddenly the wide gulf district and the 
city of Vera Cruz was before us ; we entered and were 
horrified. I would speak a good word for all places 
and people, if I could do so in truth, but I can say 
nothing in favor of Vera Cruz as a city, and very 
little for the people. It is one of the most loath- 
some and disgusting cities, more vile in filthiness than 
the outlet of the Chicago river, more dirty than the 
market streets in Jerusalem and Constantinople, the 
stagnant canals of Hamburg, the Chinese quarter in 
San Francisco, or the fumes of Colter's Hell in Yel- 
lowstone Park. Every step we took we smelt a hor- 
rid stench, every breath we breathed we inhaled vile 
odors into our lungs, and at night when the muck 
was stirred up wath long brooms, it became foul be- 
yond belief, and to crown the horrors there are thous- 
ands of carrion crows or southern buzzards eating 
and fighting in the streets, sitting on the gates and 
roofs of houses, in and around the market house, 
awmino- posts, and everywhere there is room for their 
feet. We soon imagined that the foo'd was impreg- 
nated. Foreigners try to overcome it with strong 
perfumes, but in vain; it persistently asserts itself. 
ALL, ALL IS YILE. 

On the 20th of January we boarded a Mexican 
coasting steamer, loaded to its utmost capacity in 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 491 

tonnage and bulk, with a. miscellaneous oai-go suited 
to the wants of a thousand miles of coast around the 
gulf. Its final destination was Progreso, the main 
shipping port of Yucatan, and we thought it a rare 
opportunity to see the coast and the shipping busi- 
ness, as we could not go by a direct sea voyage from 
port to port by the regular lines. After we left 
Vera Cruz we sailed down the coast southward, and 
the first important poin^ of any interest was Coat- 
zacoalcos, at the mouth of the river of the same 
name, at the north end of the Tehuantepee railroad. 
We arrived that night and made fast to the dock, 
and for a time all was still, but when morning came 
we were in the midst of tropical splendor. There 
were gTOves of stately palm and mahogany in sight, 
with endless variety of new and unknown trees, bushes, 
vines and flowers. The grass grew to the water's edge ; 
pendant vines hung from the trees and waved in the 
breeze; many new and beautiful birds sang in the for- 
est; cocoanuts, half grown, were seen in great clus- 
ters; the date palm was full of growing fruit, and 
many varieties of nuts, fruits and berries were seen 
on every side. It was a marvelous contrast to any- 
thing ever seen in the States, especially in the lake 
region, and it is difficult to give an intelligent de- 
scription for lack of a common standard of compari- 
son. Evervtliing is new, and at fii^st we felt bewild- 



492 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ered with the strange surroundings. We knew it was 
the season of mid-winter, yet we were standing amidst 
mid-summer hfe. 

The steamer had much freight to land, and all 
day the demck was kept busy hoisting this to the 
wharf. It was afterwards earned off into an en- 
closed lot and piled up close to a train of cars wait^ 
ing to receive it. There were no trucks, drays or 
carts of any kind; all wa^ carried on the backs of 
men or mlled on the ground. They seemed bent on 
making instead of saving work. It was an inter- 
esting day to us, for both men and nature were en- 
vironed, developed and actuated by impulses that 
were entirely new to us. It was our first lesson in 
sub-tropical life, and firmly fastened itself on the 
memory. When nearly sundown the ship steamed 
southward up the river to a landing thirty-six miles 
inland. The trip was very fine, the air was soft, cool 
and refreshing; the moonlight gave a charming out- 
line to things on shore, while strange soimds were 
heard in the dark forests. Small fires were blazing 
neai' the native huts on shore to frighten away nox- 
ious insects and reptiles; new constellations had come 
into view in the southern heavens, which enhanced 
the night scene. Sometime after midnight the ship 
landed, and soon all grew still and we too lay down 
to rest and dream of wonderful things. In the morn- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 493 

iiig there was a grand serenade of cock crowing, 
turkey gobbling, dogs barking, donkeys braying, par- 
rots screaming, and as the morning advanced the 
whole forest was vo<,'al with the singing of birds, and 
to me it was the beginning of a glorious day. The 
ship was close in shore, the river was narrow and 
deep, and all the surroundings were more beautiful 
and inspiring than at Ooatzocoalcos. Soon after 
sunrise canoes began coming down the river. They 
were some forty feet long and made of a single tree; 
all were loaded with manv varieties of vegetables and 
fiiiits. There were large numbers of all kinds of 
domestic fowls, with a vast amount of eggs in small 
wicker baskets, palm branches thirty feet long for 
thatching houses, and rolls of a leaf 6x8 feet, which 
seemed very valuable, besides other things new and 
unknown. Soon the local market of the town was 
a busy, noisy place, where human nature and sel- 
fishness were as conspicuous as in other parts of the 
world. Across the river were grand forests, beneath 
the dark shade of which v/ere many conical, thatched 
huts, in which the natives were lazily smoking their 
pipes and spending their aimless, indolent lives. 

Soon after noon the signal was given to cast loose, 
and we steamed oif down the river, making rapid 
headway, and were ere long at the coast again. The 
down tri[) was mor(5 than ordinarily entertaining. 



494 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

With the field glass we could look off into the deep 
forests, into the fniit orchards and gardens, off among 
the palm groves, ont on the low, green pastures, where 
there were thonsands of fat cattle and hundreds of 
poor horses grazing. AVe could also look over the 
marshlands and see immense flocks of large, white 
cranes slowly floating about, and other water fowl 
in abundance. Every turn in the river presented 
some new object of interest or new scene of beauty. 
Above, below and all around seemed to have some- 
thing charming to the eve and impressive to the mem- 
ory. 

When w^e annved at the mouth of the river, the 
vast pile of freight left the day before had been lifted 
again and packed in the cars, thus doubling the amount 
of labor it would have taken under proper manage- 
ment. We took on more freight, an-.l just at night- 
fall we steamed out to sea and turned eastward. The 
night was at first calm and clear. The outline of the 
shore formed the horizon on one side, and the quiet, 
silent sea on the other. It was a luxury to sit in the 
solemn stillness and l)reathe the soft, pure sea air, but 
in the night a stiff breeze come on, and by morning 
we had a rough, chop sea, that took the romance out 
of the surroundings. We anchored off the port of 
Frontera, and awaited the coming out of the mail 
boat, the sea being too rough to enter the harbor. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 495 

After waiting several hour? it came, but there was 
much difficulty in making it fast to the steamer. It 
rose and fell six to eight feet, and passengers, mail 
bags and luggage had to be transferred Avhen the decks 
were even. There was danger, excitement and merri- 
ment connected with the work, but after many slips, 
bumps, thumps and tumbles, the transfers were safely 
made, and the boat cast loose, and while bounding 
away like a cork, we again put cait to sea. 

The next important place was Carmen, on Car- 
men Island, in the lagoon. It is one of the centers 
of the logwood and mahogany business; there were 
many ships in port loading for Xew York and Eu- 
rope. The amount of logwood shipped, and the man- 
ner of preparing it, was quite a sui-prise to me. Every 
part of a tree, even stumps, roots and small branches, 
are saved. All tjie bark and sap wood is shaved off, 
and the whole is cut into short sticks like ordinary 
cord wood is prepared for market, and bought and sold 
by the pound. An active man will prepare from six 
hundred to one thousand pounds per day, and true 
to their shiftless way, all is done by hand instead of 
trucks and wheelbarrows. The dealers say it is now^ 
used vevj extensively for coloring wine and other 
drinks. The mahogany is cut in logs from eight to 
twenty feet long, lined up and straightened for close 
packing in ships, and rafted down the rivers and la- 



496 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

goons to the coast^ and there hoisted aboard ships 
with derricks, quite an exciting and dsngerous busi- 
ness. 

We went ashore at Carmen, and visited the beau- 
tiful Plaza, with its fountains and flowers, one of the 
public schools, and one of the splendid private homes, 
with it-s inner court of rare fruits and flowers. Julia 
Ballinger's good Spanish created quite a sensation 
in the school. Teachers and students gathered around 
with eager looks and questions, to which she could 
readilv reply, and they in turn were willing to an- 
swer questions relative to their school system, theirs 
class books, the school appliances and their thoughts 
concerning jDractical education. While listening to 
their talk we perceived the primitive ideas, jvhich, 
^\atli their meager school furniture, left us no longer 
in wonder as to why they were so far behind in 
general intelligence. The influence of the priest- 
hoo<:l was dwai*fing and blighting soul and mind. At 
the end of an hour we withdrew, for we saw the whole 
school was completely disorganized and had gath- 
ered around the wonderful American lady. One of 
the teachers could speak some English, and he and 
I did quite an amount of talking while Miss Ballinger 
was interesting the school. Later on in the day four 
bright boys came to the steamer to bid us good-bye, 
and ask more (juestions about some points which were 



OF ADDISON COFFJN. 497 

making a discussion in the school. They finally left 
us in high glee, starting off on a run. 

At Carmen we met the Maya people, the rem- 
nant of the oldest race in the world, and speaking the 
oldest language. One of the physical characteristics 
came at once into view. They are plantigrade, and 
have prehensile toes; the great toe of the body stands 
off' an inch from the others; with it they can grasp 
a rope, the limb of a tree, or any small object that 
they can with the hand. This makes them first-class 
sailors and boatmen. They are wholly distinct from 
all other races and tribes of people. Their cleanly 
habits were so marked that w^e noticed it at first con- 
tact, and we soon recognized and reverenced many 
lingering characteristics of their lost civilization. We 
became attached to them through sympathy for a 
ruined and conquered race, who were once the rulers 
of all that land. 

The natural scenerV' around Carmen has much 
of the marvelous and beautiful in it to people from 
our lake region. The luxuriant sub-tropical growth 
comes down to the water line in forests of magnifi- 
cent palms, or jungles of vines and flowers, impene- 
trable by men or large animals. Sometimes they are 
all aflame with flowers of yellow and crimson with 
i-ipening berries. Everywhere is the everlasting 
green of perpetual spring time, where frost is un- 



498 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

kuowii. The song bii*ds were new, as were the mul- 
titude of bugS; worms aud iusects. Some of them 
were bright and pretty^ others loathsome to behold, 
jet all diligent to till their brief mission in life, while 
everywhere, unchanging and singing the same low 
tune, the mosquito makes himself known. 

i^rom the lagoon we sailed for Campeche, tak- 
ing all night to make the run. We came in sight of 
land eaidy in the morning, but on account of low 
tide, the steamer anchored three miles from shore. 
We were tired of coasting- and sick of the dirty cook- 
ing, tobacco smoke and general slov^enliness aboard 
the steamer, so w^e took a small sail boat and came 
to land after a rough sail among the breakers and 
hot sunshine. We thought of stopping in the city 
a few days, but We learned that the railroad train 
toward Merida would leav€ at 3 p. m., and as it did 
not run every day, we decided to go on at once 
and trust to seeing the city at another time. We 
took lunch and a walk through the streets, and then 
to the railroad station, and at 6 p. m. reached the 
end of the track where there was a gap of thirty - 
nine miles, which had to be made in a volon, or two- 
wheeled cart. When we first saw that style of ve- 
hicle, we had to acknowledge there was something 
new under the sun. It was a combination of dray 
and ox cart, log wagon and mud wagon, such as were 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 499 

used sixty years ago in the northwest. Hideously 
ugly, uncomfortable, unwieldy and repulsive, it was 
drawn by three mules, one between the shafts and 
one on each side. There was no especial place to 
get in OT out; to do either was like climbing a rail- 
road fence. The trip had to be ma-le in the night 
to reach the train on the other end of the road next 
morning-, so we mounted a cart, ready for an experi- 
ence. The driver proved to be unskillful and head- 
long in his driving, and we had to sit in a half re- 
clining position or lie down. We started on a lively 
trot over a very rocky, broken road, the cart sway- 
ing sideways, endways and all other ways, bounding 
in the air and dropping into chucks. At midnight 
we stopped to feed the mules and take lunch where 
there were many other carts, then on again just be- 
hind the mail cart, but in less than two miles one 
wheel came oif our cart and dowai we went with a 
bang. The mules took fright and were soon beyond 
control, but the driver and attendant of the mail cart 
sprang out and caught the outer mules, and by vig- 
orous jerking and rough yanking, iinally brought 
them to a halt. They were detached and tied up, 
the wheel found, and by all hands lifted, replaced and 
secured and we resumed the niDnotonous trot and jolt- 
ing over the stones, none the worse for the adven- 
ture, but with one more experience. 



500 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Tliuiigii rough and uncomfortable, the cart trav- 
eling was not wholly without interest. The bright 
moonlight enabled us to see the villages and towns 
on the wav, and gave shadowy sublimity to the stately 
palm groves through which we passed. The dense 
tangles of bushes, vines and creejiers had a softer, 
sweeter sheen than under the glare of the noonday 
sun, and now we remember that night's experience 
with much more kindly feeling than when we arrived 
at the railroad station at daylight next morning, tired, 
stiif and sore, ready to think hard thoughts and say 
hard words about that night's journey. Once aboard 
the cars in a reclining chair, we were soon asleep 
and knew little more of the outer world until aroused 
at Merida at 10 a. m. January 2nth, 1896, thirty- 
eight days out from Amo, Indiana, and 3,000 miles 
or more travel. 

To be in Yucatan, as heretofore expressed, the 
land of wonderful ruins, was one of the ideals of early 
life. It was associated with Egvpt, Palestine, Syria, 
Greece, Italy, Ireland, Sweden and the Land of the 
Midnight Sun in all my dreams of future achieve- 
ment, all of which I had seen, and now in my old 
age my last fond desire was gTatified; its realization 
filled me with emotion words cannot express. Of 
course, I saw things through a rose-colored light and 
a charmed me<lium. What to others would have 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 501 

been of small account, to my aroused imagination 
might have had exaggerated interest, were it not that 
the long, devious journey made in getting there had 
toned down my enthusiasm, I think, to a tolerably 
reasonable point. At all events, I was glad I was 
there at last, and thanked the Lord for it. 

Merida is a city of 50,000 inhabitants, the clean- 
est in all Mexico or Central America, with less ap- 
pearance of poverty, suffering and want, fewer beg- 
gars, less drunkenness, less idleness and loafing 
around public places, I am sorry to say, than our 
own cities of the same size. The streets are unpaved, 
but are mostly on solid rock, but like those of all Mex- 
ican cities, are narrow, with very narrow sidewalks. 
Sometimes a sudden rainfall turns the limestone dust 
into regular brick moitar, which for a few hours 
splatters and smears things terribly, but as a general 
thing the streets are clean. 

The inhabitants are the greatest objects of in- 
terest to be found in the city. Four-fifths of them 
are pure blood Mayas, and speak the Maya language, 
which is distinct from the Aztec, Toltec, and in fact 
all languages. For aught we know, it was the lan- 
guage of Adam and Seth. They are very cleanly 
in their habits and dress. IN'early all wear light gar- 
ments; the men light pants, with shirt on outside, 
confined by the revolver, knife and belt: all go bare- 

32 



502 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

footed or have sandals. The women wear a flow- 
ing underskirt, with the chemise on the outside hang- 
ing to the knees, many of them tastefuly ornamented 
around the neek and wrists, with lace around the 
skirt; the girls dress as the women. The garments 
of both sexes are very appropriate for the climate 
and business of the people. They are clean all over, 
even to their feet, and this too in spite of the dujt 
of the streets and highways. Many of the high- 
toned ladies wear slippers when walking out, though 
they go barefooted at home. The ladies have a 
charming appearance as they pass in the bright sun- 
light with flowing garments, every adjunct of which 
is so extremely neat. In the morning, when thous- 
ands of women are in the great market house, the 
scene is wonderful. The women do all the market- 
ing, and the huge, open shed is a sea of white gar- 
ments, reddish-brown faces and coal black hair, while 
the soft hum of voices makes it a scene to be re- 
membered. Three-fifths of Yucatan is almost a level 
plain, very rocky, imderlaid with a coralline lime- 
stone formation, but with little tilt in the bedrock of 
the whole area. The highest point is only seventy- 
five feet above sea level, the average about twenty- 
five feet, an'd what is more singular, there are no rivers 
or running streams. The water supply is in large, 
fininel-shaped sink holes, where the water stands at 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 503 

sea. level. All villages have one or more wells dug 
in the solid rock; they are as inexhaustible as the 
ocean. This well is to the women and children what 
the saloon is to the men — the place of general meet- 
ing, where all the news and gossip is discussed. They 
are generally in a shady place; around these fountains 
of water the natives congregate in the cool of the 
day. They seem to live a dreamy, contented life, 
with but little aspiration, and we soon learned to look 
with kindly interest into their clean, broad faces as 
the}' turned them toward us. According to Ameri- 
caji ideas they are not beautiful, but they are a lov- 
able race: their quiet civility is especially charming, 
when compared with the Aztecs in the City of Mexico. 
The Spaniard did not impress as much of his Moor- 
i:?h character on the Mayas as on other tribes, and 
they have many distinctive, redeeming traits, which 
have come down from their ancient, grand civilization. 
The natives proudly sav, ''We were conquered by the 
Spaniard, but w^e never amalgamated with our con- 
querors, as others did,'' and to-day the viler elements 
of society are of the mixed races. The more we mingle 
with the Mayas, the more convinced we were that 
they are the parent race of Central America and Yu- 
catan — the cradle of American civilization. If not of 
the world. There is more evidence that the Egyp- 
tian was copiefl from the ^laya than the Maya from 



504 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the Egyptian, and just now there is no place better 
suited to furnish material for plausible theories of 
the origin of civilization than Yucatan. 

Merida stands on the site of an ancient city, and 
the great pyi'amid furnished a large amount of build- 
ing material. The conqueroi*s erected a strong fort 
on the ruins, enclosing a church and other buildings 
now falling into decay. The limestone is still abun- 
dant, notwithstanding the vast quantity used in the 
immense ruins. The city of Merida is built of this 
rough stone; the houses are plastered in the irmer 
courts, and cliaml)ers, concreted and painted white 
on the outside. At noonday the reflection from the 
whited walls is almost blinding to the foreigner, but 
at night, beneath the brilliant electric light, the ef- 
fect is magical and the evenings on the great plaza 
are most enjoyable. 

We had letters of introduction to our consul, 
Robert Oliver, and by him were introduced to ex- 
consul Dr. Edward W. Thompson, who is making 
a life work of studying the ruins of Yucatan and 
adjoining states, collecting relics of the prehistoric 
ages, and taking casts and impressions of the picture 
writing and other hieroglyphics, of which he is mak- 
ing a grand success. To have had the privilege of con- 
versing with him and seeing his sanctum, his mar- 
velous curios, such as paintings, photographs and ob- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 505 

jects of scientific interest, was alone worth a trip 
from Indiana to Merida. His enlarged photographs 
show the ruins with almost the same clearness as if 
standing in the sunlight before the originals. He 
did most of the work of preparing the exhibit of the 
ruins at the World's Fair at Chicago. He has a com- 
plete copy of the only history of the Maya race that 
has escaped the destruction of the Spaniards, and 
he has succeeded in deciphering many passages in the 
book. 

We spent a week at Merida studying the people. 
My niece gave a great deal of her time to the 
language, the pronunciation, intonation, etc., for 
though the Spanish was the public and state language, 
the natives spoke the Maya among themselves. Our 
housekeeping was an interesting feature of our 
stay. Julia purchased an outfit, including an al- 
cohol stove, for $3.92. The alcohol for a day's cook- 
ing cost five cents. Our utensils could all be put 
into a three-gallon bucket or market basket. We 
rented a room in the middle of a large building where 
the heat did not penetrate. It was 24x30, and 
twenty-five feet from floor to ceiling; it was lighted 
by a skylight. We bought bread from the baker, 
coffee ready ground from the mill, Irish and sweet 
potatoes, small heads of cabbage, turnips, eggs and 
fruit in the market. We brought with us canned 



506 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

butter, meat, milk and koney. The rent of the room 
was sixty cents a day, while our food cost twenty- 
eight to thirty-two cents per day. The most enjoy- 
able i^art was watching the cooking on the minia- 
ture stove with its tiny, blue blaze. When one came 
out of the dust and heat of a long walk, this house- 
keeping wa^ as delightful as camping in the moun- 
tains or the plains of the far north. AVe gathered 
all the information we could about the towns and 
villages we proposed to visit, besides taking note of 
the habits of the people who came to the city market 
from distant places. Sometimes we picked up items 
of gossip that were of value to us in other places. 

On the 3rd of February, 1896, we started, in 
company with Dr. Edward Thompson, for Izmal, the 
end of the railroad, on the trip to Chichen-Itza ruins, 
one of our objective points. To get there we must 
travel 120 miles, though as the crow flies it was only 
100 miles away. We left most of our luggage in 
the city, the doctor having made ample provision 
by the way and at his splendid mansion at the ruins, 
which are located on his 72,000 acres, purchased from 
an old Spanish family. The doctor had given us 
due notice that there would be no soft places on the 
trip, that there would be rough carting, rough fare, 
heat and hard (dimbing all along the way, but the 
object in view would repay all the privation. The 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 507 

railroad travel was to be done by day, but much of 
the carting by night, to a\^oid the heat and dust. 
Traveling by night is a national custom, and it is 
often done from choice. In all our night travel 
we met or passed more people than by day. Vege- 
tables and fruit are taken to market during the night, 
the street cars in Merida run until after nudnight all 
the time, and in hot weather all night. Men and 
mules seem made for night travel in Yucatan, as the 
Arab of the desert. 

We were now down to really solid work, and 
started out with minds, eyes and ears on the alert 
for all that passed before us. By this time Mis^ 
Ballinger was full of enthusiasm, and in eager antici- 
pation of the things which we were to view in the 
wonder land. Soon after leaving the city, we ran 
into a region devoted to the cultivation of the sisal 
plant, from which is manufactured our light-colored 
ropes and binder twine of the farmer. Tliere were 
tens of thousands of agres of that singular plant. In 
leaf it resembles the century plant, but grows up like 
a cabbage stalk or dwarf palm, with lanceolate leaves 
four to six feet long, terminating in a sharp, thorny 
spike. The sisal farms have a very forbidding look, 
wholly different from anything in the States or any- 
where else. To strangers it looks like desolation and 
starvation, but we soon learned to regard it with in- 



508 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

terest, for along the railroad, opposite the large farms, 
are platforms piled up with bales of sisal fibre like 
cotton bales. Tram cars drawn by nniles run back 
and forth from the factories in the middle of the farm. 

A farm which w^orks two hundred hands will 
yield two thousand dollars net profit per month all 
the year. The value of a farm is not estimated by 
the number of acres of land, but by the number 
of men employed. Where ten men do the work, the 
plantation is worth $10,000, and so on; one that re- 
quires one hundred men is valued at $100,000, with- 
out regard to the quantity of land owned. The es- 
timate is made as to the quantity under actual pro- 
ductive cultivation; one man represents $1,000 of in- 
vested capital. 

The harvesting of sisal is continuous from day 
to day. When the long, slim leaves begin to droop 
and stand at right angles to the trunk, they are cut 
oif with a knife much like an Indian corn knife, 
bound in bundles, and carried to the factory on the 
backs of men and donkeys; sometimes carts are used 
for long distances. The leaves are run between 
heavy iron rollers to squeeze out the acrid juice, then 
it goes through a mill similar to a thresher, which 
cleans the long, white fibre, which is baled like cot- 
ton and shipped to all manufacturing countries, and 
it will soon supercede hemp in the market of the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 509 

world. About the time we had become interested in 
the sisal farming, we ran into a corn belt, where 
corn was the standard production. Here again all 
was new, and in contradiction to former ideas or 
belief. It is not planted in rows, is not cultivated, 
but is planted on ground so stony that it looks im- 
possible for it to grow. In fact, everything is so 
contradictory that we hardly knew what to think 
about it. A body of thick forest land is ''slashed" 
down when in full leaf; in a month or two it becomes 
dry and is burned off, making a large fire and burn- 
ing even the stumps. The loose stones are partly 
calcined and the first shower of rain leaves them 
white as snow\ The lime disengaged with the ashes 
of the burning furnishes abundant plant food. The 
corn planter, armed with an iron-pointed staff, goes 
forth and thrusts his iron spike into the ground 
wherever he can find a place or it is possible to do 
so among the loose stones, and into the hole he drops 
four grains, pressing them down with his feet, and 
the work is done until gathering time. As there is 
no need of cultivation, rows or regularity is not a ne- 
cessity. The first and second years there is a yield 
of thirty to thirty-six bushels per acre ; the third y ear 
a few weeds and bushes appear, and the yield is 
twenty-five bushels; the fourth year the bushes are 
thick and strong, and twenty bushels is the yield. 



510 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

After that they are suffered to grow into a forest, and 
then ''slashed" again, and so it has been going on for 
centuries, and so it will ])e while present civilization 
continues. There is no necessity for cribbing the 
corn; it ripens at the beginning o^' the dry season, 
and will keep in the field as well as in the crib. If 
it falls down on the dry, naked stones it does no in- 
jury, so the natives get their staff of life with little ef- 
fort and naturally grow indolent. 

Although we delighted in watching the affairs 
of rural life by the wayside, other things thickened 
around us and attracted our attention. Off in the 
fields and looming up out of the langled forests, great 
pyramids were seen standing alone or in groups. In 
the stone walls that enclosed the fields and village 
gardens, in the houses of the towns, we saw fragments 
of carved stones, broken columns and ornamented 
pillars, parts of mutilated statues and other remains 
of ruined buildings, all of which told us we were 
among the scenes of prehistoric life. In one place 
we passed a group of seven mounds from twenty to 
thirty feet high; then a mile away the glass revealed 
a pyramid in the midst of another group. A break 
in the forest showed other still farther away on the 
other side. Sometimes the road was cut through a 
mound, showing the peculiar construction and dura- 
bility. The thorny jungle and tangled forest was 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 511 

tilled witli trees, vines, Howers and berries in every 
glade and cove, while rare birds, with beautiful plum- 
age and songs, were everywhere seen and heard, and 
all were new to us. 

Dr. Thompson was fandliar with the road and 
the surroundings, and in a few brief words could give 
-a whole volume of information, in well-chosen con- 
trasts with countries and things we had both seen, 
for he, too, had been a traveler, with eyes to see and 
ears to hear and a retentive memory and fluent tongue, 
with a perfect mastery of the Spanish and other civ- 
ilized languages, as well as of the Maya, spoken by 
the free tribes of the interior. Before reaching Iza- 
nial, sixty-two nules from Merida, I learned the signs 
that indicated the neighborhood of gTcat ruins; all 
the loose stones of a certain size and shape were picked 
up in field and forest, sometimes for miles around. 
It was 5 p. m. when we landed at Izamal, the end of 
the rail, too late to make any tour of the neighboriug 
ruins, so we took an early supper an«l were ushered into 
a long, narrow room, thirty feet from paved floor to the 
ceiling, which consisted of joists of large, peeled poles 
covered with a net work of small branches, which in 
turn was covered by a concrete roof nearly a foot 
thick that was proof against rain and heat, and as 
time went on it l)ecaine hard as stone and had a 
metallic ring when struck witlh a hanuner. Ham- 



512 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

mocks were swung across the room too high for fleas 
to jump or for the dogs to rear up and smell our 
faces. Into these we climl>ed and wrapped in our 
blankets, slept until the clock in the old cathedral 
struck four, when we arose and had earlv coffee and 
were out by daylight. Dr. Thompson went to look 
for a cart, Julia and I to ex])lore the surround- 
ings, going first to a very large, fortified ca- 
thedral built by the Spaniards with material from 
th€ ruins in and near the town. It is a very mas- 
sive building, surrounded with string walls and en- 
filading towers, which could have stood quite a siege 
against the guns of that period. It is now falling 
into decay, only a small portion being used for ser- 
vice. The lookout from the battlements showed the 
town and its vicinity. From there we walked across 
the town some distance to the great mound of Izamal, 
which rises up from the plain in proportion and ap- 
proaching in size that of Cholula. It is mound- 
shaped, with a projection from the center extending 
westward. The body of the mound is solid concrete, 
cased with hewn stone. The extension is not so high, 
and is an immense pile of bowlders laid solidly to- 
gether witli mortar or cement, and about eighty 
feet high. The ascent is by rough stone steps at the 
west end of the projection, and very much broken. 
We walked along the center to the main mound, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 518 

which we ascended by steps, not so badly broken, a 
hundred and twenty feet. On top we found a level 
area, paved with large, well-dressed flag stones, with 
grooves running across as if to convey water. The 
rough climbing and singular construction of the ruin 
took our attention so completely that we forgot to 
look around until we stood upon the summit. Then 
we became oblivious as to how or by whom it was 
built, for the scene was so grand that we lacked words 
to describe our emotions and for a time stood in 
solemn silence. We looked off in every direction 
over a boundless expanse of living green, like an 
ocean suddenly hushed to silence and rest. It is truly 
one of the world's beautiful pictures. Scattered 
over all were little white villages as on a map, but 
four-fifths was an unbroken forest, save where green 
mounds of tr-ees rose up as islands out of the water, 
marking the sight of other ruins hidden away in the 
great forest from the outside world, possibly all as 
large as the one on which we stood, which covered 
three or four acres, while many seen on the hori- 
zon's utmost verge seemed even in the distance higher 
and more vast in extent. We gazed long, with eager 
eyes and active memory upon the dazzling scene, 
bathed in the sunlight of the early morning, think- 
ing, thinking, thinking, then with glad hearts de- 
.scended and made preparation to meet the ordeal of 



514 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the cart ride oi fortv-five miles tliat was allotted for 
that day's work. 

At 9 a. m. we mounted the niugh cart and 
rumbled off over the uneven road, going southeast, 
and everv mile the road seemed to grow worse and 
the heat and dust greater, but fortunately the wind 
was in our faces, so we escaped mo«t of the blind- 
ing dust. The timber grew taller and thicker, the 
large, funnel-shaped sink holes became frequent, and 
many held water; the country was more undulat- 
ing. Immense lizards were seen running across the 
road or looked at the procession from the jungle with 
brilliant eyes, while new trees, flowers and bird« 
continued to come into view. At noon we reached 
the relay and stopped an hour for lunch. The docr 
tor stretched a hammock for me, while Julia 
prepared hot coffee, and in Ave minutes I was 
asleep like a tired child and had a good rest. After 
lunch we rumbled on through an ever-changing suc- 
cession of contrasting contradictions. At 5 p. m. 
we came to the end of the cart line, worn and sore. 
We spent the night in the native village in ham- 
mocks, and slept soundly till early morning, when 
the doctor was astir so as to have an early start. 
He had horses prepared for the trip, with two native 
footmen and a pack horse. By 5 a. m. we were in 
the saddle and moving out in single file along a nar- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 515 

row, pack-horse trail, tlirougli deep woods, the doc- 
tor in front, then Julia, then i came with the 
footman aif rear guard. The trail was winding 
and rough, over ridges, loose bowlders and tangled 
thickets, and alongside a few corn holds. For sev- 
eral hours it was a delightfully roni:intic ride. We 
were in touch with nature in a multitude of new 
forms, and we realized more and more that we were 
beyond the frost line amid pei-petual green. At one 
place, swaying in the Avind from the tree tops, were 
nests of the tree ant, shaped like a large hornet's 
nest, with the big end dowmward, while close beside 
the path were many giant sisal stalks, one sixty feet 
high supposed to be fifty or more years old. On the 
side of trees were wasps' nests, shaped like birds with 
one wing extended and wing feathers so perfectly 
imitated that at first we thought they were birds as 
big as crows. All along the path and in the woods 
are holes in the rock and openings into caves of all 
sizes and shapes, while occasionally we would come 
unexpectedly on scvme relic or reminder of prehis- 
toric life, where all was now silent and desolate. 

Toward noon we stopped at a Maya hut for lunch 
and to rest. It was in the midst of the forest and 
by a deep-water hole. While looking at the hut and 
its lonely situation we were startled and amazed to 
see a Mava woman sit down bv the side of the door 



516 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

and begin to spin thread just as they did in Egypt 
in the days of Abraham. She had a wooden spindle 
about nine inches long, which she stood in a small 
earthen cup; then she drew a thread of cotton fibre 
out about a yard. She held it to the spindle and 
t\\irled it mth the fingers of her right hand very 
rapidly. When the thread was twisted the spindle 
was reversed and the thread wound on it. This con- 
tinued twenty or twenty-five minutes, when the spin- 
dle was full, as in spinning on a big wheel in the 
old days. The woman then stood the spindle be- 
tween her toes and reeled the thread into a skein on 
her hand, running the surplus twist back and cor- 
recting all blemishes and defects. The thread was 
AS perfect as the best machine thread of the commerce 
of to-day. She could easily have spun six cuts per 
day, as our mothers used to count. To find this lost 
art in a Maya hut in the forests of Yucatan was more 
than we, or even Dr. Thompson, expected. I had 
to think more than once and handle the yarn with 
my own hands before it was set as a fact of real life. 
The doctor had the w^oman spin another broach, and 
then purchased the whole outfit for his museum at 
Chicago. As the woman sat spinning in that door 
way, she looked as though she might have been the 
model from which the paintings in Egypt were taken 
four thousand years ago, and she was the perfect 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 517 

living picture of Alaya woiiicii painted seven to ten 
thousand years ago in the inner chambers of Yuca- 
tan and Canipeche ruins. We resumed our journey 
with new thoughts and strange emotions, for it seemed 
as though we had seen a vision of the buried past 
and our minds were being prepared for revolutions 
in thought, which were near at hand. The after- 
noon was oppressively warm, and I became quite 
tired, but held out until nearly the end of the trip, 
llien I dismounted, turned my horse loose to keep 
his })lace in line, and being in my native element 
on foot, 1 walked on with little inconvenience. The 
doctor and Julia protested against leaving me 
behind, but seeing 1 moved all right, they rode on. 
In ten minutes I came in full view of the castle 
pyramid of Chichen-Itza ruins, one of the grandest 
of all. The sight of it took the weariness out of 
my limbs, tilled my head and heart with new life, 
and in due time^ I reached the Hacienda. Though 
1 had been tired, hot and hungry, I was far from 
being spent, and a good hot supper and native coffee 
set me all right, and we had a very pleasant even- 
ing amid tine surroundings. 

In the cool of the morning we started out with 
Dr. lliompson in tlie lead. In passing over a rough 
ridge we could hear the picks of eight men under- 
ground, excavating sand that was very white and 

83 



518 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

chalky, but of great value in plastering. The first 
ruin visited was a long, massive building, tolerably 
well preserved. Its many low, dark chambers were 
covered with hieroglyphics, giving it the name of 
the House of Dark Writing; it is massive and gloomy, 
though of great interest. The next was the House 
of the Xuns; in 1842 Gorman called this the House 
of Cacique. It is a huge building of peculiar form, 
and elaborate in its arrangement of chambers. On 
rhp outsi<le it is ornamented in a marvelous man- 
ner. The angles have been tastefully carved and 
adorned with stone hooks and rings; raised lines of 
drapery run around the sides; over the doors are beau- 
tiful female figures, surrounded by a variety of finely- 
executed borders, encircled v^th wreaths. Some of 
tlie figures have head dresses of feathers and tassels, 
^lany of the facades are highly decorated with square 
blocks of stone, apparently cut with the most per- 
fect instrument. Other ornaments are attached to 
the wall by a shaft. The body of the building is 
made of solid concrete, cased with finely-hewn slabs 
of limestone, some of them highly carved. Their 
outer easing adheres to the concrete as firmly as if 
they were one and the same mass; the concrete seems 
to be imperishable. 

Everv^ part of the ornamentation of the build- 
ing is different from anything of the kind seen else- 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. 519 

where. The wonderful beauty of the cornice and 
exquisite molding is original, and belongs exclusively 
to Yucatan. Nowhere in the world do we lind more 
perfect architecture or more refined ideals. In say- 
ing this for the House of Nuns, I say it for all others. 
On the north side is a flight of small, stone steps, which 
leads to the top, forty feet from the pavement. The 
area of the summit platform is an oblong square, one 
hundred and seventy feet long; in the center is a 
range of chambers occupying two-thirds of the space. 
They are twenty-five feet high. These rooms are 
cased with carved stones and plastered inside with 
a very fine, white plaster, covered with paintings, 
symbolic and hieroglyphic writing. Though many 
of the rooms are now much broken, yet the fragments 
give evidence of their marvelous beauty when they 
were perfect. 

Near the eastern front of the main building are 
two small, single-room buildings, both elaborately 
ornamented with original designs of people, birds, 
wreaths and flowers, everywhere interlined with hie- 
roglyphics. In front of these buildings are pillars, 
while all around for many rods are heaps of hewn 
and broken stones, sculptured work, such as carved 
images in sitting posture, others broken and fallen. 
In fact, the whole forest is full of wreckage of once 
beautiful buildings; we cannot turn over a slabstone 



520 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

but fresli beauties meet our eyes. Xo one can walk 
among suck scenes without learning new lessons of 
humanity. 

We next passed a large ruin with a central dome 
rising high above a mass of broken walls and crum- 
bling chambers that once must hstxe been a marvel 
of architectural beauty and originality. Further on 
toward the north we passed a very large, deej^water 
hole, which had been the great central fountain for 
the water supply of untold thousands; it stood at sea 
level, and w^as inexhaustible. AVe next approached 
the castle pyramid, the central figure of Chichen- 
Itza, but we postponed climbing until the morrow. 

We crossed the great terrace, covering an area 
of five to seven acres, in circular form and one thous- 
and feet in diameter, to the temple or Tennis Court, 
a great ruin tw^o stories high, and with connecting 
walls four hundred feet long with double rows of 
chambers. We now went north into the forest to 
see a recent discovery. At first it seemed a shapeless 
mass, but many long, hewn stones, witli unusually 
elaborate carving, indicated it was a place of inter- 
est. By running a tunnel into the mass, strange 
things were found. First a stone mortar thirty inches 
deep, twenty-four across, with a close-fitting, carved 
stone cover six inches thick, in a })erfect state of pres- 
ervation. It had been filled with something which 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 521 

tlie shrewd tinder did not see fit to make public. In 

a vast number of cone-shaped . dressed stones 

eight inches in diameter at the large end, tapering 
to a point, and three and a half feet long, were found 
standing on end^ packed closely and covered with a 
mass of concrete; above this had been a circle of 
chambers. What this stone safe, as we may call it, 
contained, and why those conical stones should be 
so securely hidden away, are mysteries we cannot 
know until further discoveries are made. 

From this strange spot we went far into the 
dark forest to a secret fountain, where living human 
offerings were made to the rain god in cases of extreme 
drought. It was a deep, dark, ^vater-hole, completely 
hidden by the rocks and forest. There were heavy;, 
stone chambers near the pool, where the devotees pre- 
pared for the last act. When a sacrifice was deemed 
absolutely necessary a number of priests offered them- 
selves, then an equal number of virgins also volun- 
teered. On the solemn day, and at the appointed 
hour, the priests would take the virgins in their arms 
and throw themselves into the dark ])ool, and so go 
down to death; the fall was nearly sixty feet and the 
water very deep. In this day of achievement, a div- 
ing bell may some time make startling revelations from 
that pool. My niece. Miss Ballinger, and I were two" 
out of three of the only white ])eople who liave seen 



522 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

that dismal spot in more than hitj jears, if not for a 
much greater period, and we could not find it again 
without much hunting, nor would we under any cir- 
cumstances abuse the confidence imposed in us. By 
a break in the dense forest we saw looming up the 
castle pyramid, and were safe again. We returned 
to the mansion by another route than the one by 
which we went. Our hearts were overflowing with 
silent wonder and thankfulness to the Lord for per- 
mitting us to see these things. The amount of walk- 
ing, climbing and creeping we had done would under 
ordinary circumstances have been exhausting, but 
we still felt brave, though '.omewhat weary. A good 
hot dinner soon restored our strength and courage. 

We lay down for a time to rest the body and 
arrange the world of new thoughts, impressions and 
revolutionary ideas that were crowding our minds. 
We began to realize of how little humanity knows 
of what wonderful things are in the world. In the 
cool of the evening Miss Julia and I went out 
to the House of the Nuns again and examined its 
chambers and exterior once more, and we again 
walked over and among the broken and scattered 
j'emaiiis of the former tower and temple. Later on 
we climbed the steps to the highest point of the 
central chambers to see the sun go down. It was 
a grand scene; we seemed to stand on an island in 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 623 

tlie midst of a green, silent sea, which had no limit 
but the horizon. As the last rays of sunlight sank 
into that sea, a solemn stillness fell over the wide 
expanse, the noise of the day ceased and the hum 
of the night had not begim — it was a stillness that 
entered the soul and gave it rest. As darkness gath- 
ered around we descended and returned to the man- 
sion, thinking of the past and of the millions who 
had borne their brief burden of life and departed, 
leaving these stupendous wrecks to tell their story. 

After supper w^e spent some hours in listening 
to the doctor's account of his nine years' residence 
in the country and his many, long journeys through- 
out Yucatan and other Mexican states, Guatemala 
and Central America in search of new^ ruins, exam- 
ining and photographing those already known; of 
his adventures, dangers, trials and escapes, his bat- 
tles with tigers, serpents, savage desperadoes and hos- 
tile natives, his sufferings from hunger and thirst 
on his journeys through trackless forests and tangled 
jungles, being lost among the kgoons and swamps, 
barely escaping with liis life, etc. Listening to and 
discussing these adventures made us unconscious of 
time, and hours would pass unheeded, until Julia, 
who was always in the chair, woiild declare the meet- 
ing adjourned. 

On the second morning we started early wdiile 



524 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

it was cool^ directing our steps toward the Castle 
pyramid, intending to ascend on the west side while 
shaded from the hot sun. On the way the doctor 
turned aside to show us a life-sized ligure of a tiger, 
cut in the surface of the solid rock. Trom the chisel- 
ing, it had been don© a long time, and probably 
marked the spot where the animal had been killed 
in a fierce battle. Cattle pyramid stands on a terrace 
twenty to forty feet high. As heretofore stated, it 
is the grand, central figure of the gToup, and is in 
the southeast portion of the great circle, one thous- 
and feet in diameter. It is built of concrete, cased 
on the outside with large, hewn stones, and stands 
with the cardinal point at a variation of twelve de- 
grees east of our present meridian. It measures five 
hundred and fifty feet at its base. On the east and 
north side are flights of narrow stone steps; on the 
southwest they are broken up by gradations of about 
four feet, then recede about three feet. The steps 
on the south and west are much broken, making rough 
climbing. On the south and west front have been 
many small chambers, accessible by the gradations 
in the steps. 

The pyramid terminates in a rectangular area 
in the center of which is a chambered edifice one 
hundred and seventy feet long, twenty high and forty 
wide. Around the structure was a broad, level, prom- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 525 

c^iiacle, paved with solid stone, still in a good state of 
preservation. Down eaeli angle of the pyramid an 
immense stone seri)ent has been constructed tiiie to 
life, with it^ tail on the summit and its head rest- 
ing on a S(}uare block of stone, with wide-open mouth 
and protruding tongue, and double rows of teeth. 
Sections of these huge serpents have fallen out and 
lay at the base, but enough remains in place to show 
the symmetry and perfection of the work. Each side 
of the four flights of steps, raised four feet high, are 
serpents with o])en mouths, as at the angles, seem- 
ingly to protect the ascent. Some of these are still 
in place, some have fallen, and one is gone. The 
chambers in the crowning building are wonders that 
baffle all iefforts to describe. They are finished in 
white stucco, in a style not equalled in delicacy by 
similar work found in any other country, ancient or 
modern. The stucco is covered with beautiful pic- 
tures, finished with a taste and refinement not 
equaled by the best modern art. These ancient paint- 
ers seem to have had four additional primary colors 
to those known to us, or else they had gTeater skill 
in blending than we. Though executed thousands 
of years ago, when carefully cleaned they are to all 
ap])earance as bright as when new. The ornamen- 
tation on the outer walls is fine; over and ar(Hind 
a door on the east there is trace of marvelouslv del- 



526 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

icate sculpturing to have been done in rough limestone. 
The north end was the front, if we judge by the beauty 
and amount of the decorations. Around and over the 
doorways is hieroglyphic writing, and it is on this 
side that there is a receding portico, supported by 
massive stone pillars about four feet square and eight 
high. The inner surface of the portico is elaborately 
adorned with figures and hieroglyphics, and so are 
the pillars, excepting on one- side. There a skilled 
hand has cut the figures of two men with long beards, 
wearing the costume of the ancient, Syrian Hittites. 
There are no other figures in North or South America 
of ancient date, with long beards and Hittite dress. 
Who were these bearded men ? From whence ? When 
and for what purpose did they come to Chichen- 
Itza? We know not; but this we do know, that the 
Hittite empire was in its prime when Egypt was young 
in years. Here we had an item for memory that 
was revolutionary in spite of ourselves. 

Fortunately. Dr. Thompson has succeeded in 
copying the most important part of the hieroglyphics 
and historic paintings for the (^hicago Museum. 
Every square foot of the structure bears a record of 
the past, ready to tell the story when the key to the 
sealed book is found. A story which, if ever known, 
may reverse the favorite theories of the great men 
of our day, and put to blush the Darwinian craze and 
boasted light of the nineteenth century. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 527 

The scene, from the top of the castle is beautiful 
and inspiring. It enables one to see much farther 
than from the House of the ]S^uns, and being there 
early in the morning the other side of things was il- 
luminated, adding greatly to the sunset view. With 
the glass we could see green mounds rising out of 
the vast forest, marking the site of ruins hid away 
in the impenetrable forest. Within a radius of four 
miles there are eighty-two large ruins, and within 
the range of the glass are a hundred more, giving 
a faint idea of what Yucatan was in her early prime. 

West of the castle, and occupying the same rel- 
ative position in the great circle, stands an immense 
ruin, called the Temple, or Tennis Court, for want 
of a better name. It is two stories high, and is more 
elaborately adorned than others, and probably has 
the most important records. Its numerous chambers 
are astonishing to behold. The hieroglyphics seem 
to have an especially significant meaning, for new 
combinations appear, the lines are more sharply 
drawn, the outline and details more perfect in finish, 
and everything shows that it is soniething of great 
consequence. The eastern half of the outer wall of 
several chambers have fallen, and the stuccoed ceil- 
ing of the other half stands solid and perfect. In 
the morning sunlight it presents a picture that is as- 
tonishing beyond expression. The lines of both the 



528 • LIFE AND TRAVELS 

writing and sculpturing stand revealed with such dis- 
tinctness that we were spell-l)(3und as we gazed on 
the scene. In the midst of one of the large rooms 
thus exposed is the most singular object found in the 
ruins. A block of stone four feet square has been 
shaped into a table, with top and bottom the same 
size, the central portion of the mass hewn away to two 
and a half feet wide and one foot thick. Through 
the middle of this is a round hole fifteen inches in 
diameter, worn as smooth as glass. Behind this table 
is a nicely-carved, stone chair or stool, standing: the 
ju'oper distance away so that one sitting upon it could 
conveniently write on the tal)le, the top of which, 
like the ring, is woni smooth. That chamber seems 
to have been the recording room or judgment hall; 
the one occupying the stool could thrust his feet 
through the ring and be at ease. The table and stool 
escaped destruction when the walls fell; they would 
be an object of interest in a museiun. The whole 
west side of the edifice is in a good state of preserva- 
tion, and should be especially preserved until the 
writing can be deciphered. 

Southeast from the castle, and three hundred 
feet away, a number of small churches seem to have 
been built around the entire circle, one thousand 
yards. The (diambers were eight by ten or twelve 
feet, and twelve feet high. In front of them was 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. o2^ 

a row of stuiie pillars, making a culuiinacle twelve 
feet wide. From the pillars to the chamber walls 
heavv wuodeii beams were laid; then the chambers 
and colonnade were covered with a heavy concrete 
roof, on wliicdi tliousands of people conld stand by 
day and sleep by night, while the colonnade and cham- 
bers furnished shelter in time of rain for other thous- 
ands. 

The circle was interrupted for a fifth of the dis- 
tance on the west side, and a straight wall was built. 
Kunning out from the north end of the temple, a 
parallel wall leaves a level, enclosed space suited 
for national games of ceremony, hence the term Ten- 
nis Court now given it. The w^alls are thirty feet 
high, and the inner one thirty feet thick and nearly 
perfect. East of the castle many chambers and pil- 
lars are still standing amid the thick tangle of vines 
and bushes, but are very easily seen and studied from 
the top of the castle. The wdiole area of the circle 
is level, and may have been used to celebrate relig- 
ious festivals or public games — possibly both. By 
digging into the surface the same solid concrete is 
found everywhere. By a careful estimate, this mass 
of concrete is nowhere less than twenty feet thick, 
and where there are depressions it is forty feet. Cas- 
tle pyramid is not nearly sf) high as the great pyramid 
of Egypt, but its }>eculiar construction makes it look 



530 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

much higher. Had it tenninated in a pinnacle like 
those in Egj^t, it would have been taller than any 
in the world. 

When we think of the work it took to make the 
foundation terrace, then to build the castle, pyramid, 
the temple and circle of chambers, we begin to under- 
stand what an immense amount of work it cost. Then, 
too, we must remember that the ancient Maya had 
no beasts of burden, that all was done by human hands 
and mechanical contrivance unknown to us. Tak- 
ing these things into consideration, we realize that 
more labor and ingenuity of man has been bestowed 
upon these ruins than any other in the world. 

It was in the vicinity of this circle that Le Plon- 
goon tested his assertion that he had the key to the 
Maya language, and could read the hieroglyphics. 
He claimed that he had found a secret passage, and 
upon deciphering the writing therein he was informed 
that the image of Chack Mool, one of the three broth- 
ers who founded the Maya empire, was buried at a 
certain point and a certain depth underground. He ex- 
cavated at the exact spot and found the statue, or re- 
clining figure, but while removing it to the railroad for 
transportation to Chicago, the Mexican government 
took possession and put it in the museum in Mexico 
City. It is a wonder, next in importance to the calen- 
dar stone. Le Plongeon now conducts his explorations 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 531 

in secret; he may know soiuetliiiig of the conical 
stones and the secret of the contents of the mortar, 
but if so, he wisely keeps still. Rumor has it that 
he read another record at Uxmal, and by it he found 
the image of a brother of O'hack Mool, but that after 
taking twelve photographs of it he re-buried it be- 
fore the government officers arrived. He showed the 
photographs, but refused to disclose the spot where 
it was concealed. It is quite probable that many 
secret excavations may be made, for it will be im- 
possible for the government to guard all points. On 
general principles it is all right to prohibit relics from 
being removed from the country, though just now 
it seems rather like acting ''the dog in the manger.'^ 
We hope the time will come when the Mexican gov- 
ernment will be able to collect into its national mu- 
seum many remains of the prehistoric age, for the 
material is in their country in great abundance. 

Our second day's exploration terminated as the 
first; we were tired, hot and dust begrimed, covered 
with ticks, hungry and thirsty, hands torn with thorns 
and briars, and last, though not least, smarting from 
the bites of ants. Rest and a good supper, and a 
cleansing from dust and insects restored us to cheer- 
fulness again, and before we retired for the night 
the doctor gave us another chapter of his life among 
the ruins and natives, the life work before him, his 



532 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

aspirations to make his place the model in Yucatan, 
Mexico and all Central America. 

He has built his splendid mansion so as to com- 
mand a view of all the ruins of Chichen-Itza. From 
the roof a good eye with a good glass can see the 
inscriptions and beautiful facades on three of the most 
interesting ruins of the group. It is his intention 
to have, a little further on, a village of several hun- 
dred families, with a school maintained and controlled 
by himself. 

At a late hour my niece again adjourned 
the meeting and we lay down, the othei's to sleep, 
but my mind was too full for that. As the saying 
goes ''Reading between the lines" t(j get a double 
meaning out of a written article, so I was reading 
between the stones nearly all night of things not seen, 
things that came out in startling distinctness, so at 
A^ariance with my former opinions and the accepted 
ideas of the world, that I had to write a reserAT^d chap- 
ter in my memory to aAvait the results that Avill follow 
the researches of Dr. Thompson and Le Plongeon. 

We had seen \A'ith our eyes, handled Avith our 
hands, stood on Avith our feet this wonderful group 
of ruins, and Avitli the aid of the doctor's perfect 
knowledge of all their details, Ave had an intelligent 
idea of their real A^astness, so Ave determined to re- 
turn to Merida and rest for a few days, then start 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 533 

out again. On the morning of February 8th we were 
astir early, intending to make a forced march to the 
end of the cart line, then make the ride during the 
night and take the cars the next morning at 6 a. 
m. We had an early breakfast, mounted our horses, 
bade the natives good-bye, and were soon passing 
under the shadow of the great pyramid, and we cast 
many thankful looks behind us as we went on into 
the forest. We observed the same line of march 
in returning as in going out. In this trip we saw 
things from the other side, as well as many that were 
new. In some places the opposite side of the stones 
were carved, showing additional signs of former life. 
At one place there was a little black tube like a 
small hose pipe attached to the sides of the trees from 
the ground to the thick foliage at the top, constructed 
by a large, but tender, variety of ant as a protec- 
tion from enemies and sunlight, for if they are ex- 
posed to the hot sun for a short time they curl up 
and die. We next came to a little smooth path which 
crossed the road. It was about two inches mde, and 
along it a multitude of ants were traveling both ways 
from an ant hill to a large tree. Those coming from 
the tree carried a piece of leaf from the size of a 
dime to a half dollar, with which they fed their young. 
They are called umbrella ants, and are first-class 
fighters when their nest* are disturbed; they are 
34 



534 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

equally as willing to attack a man as a mouse. There 
was a deep-water hole near the path, overhung with 
dark trees. Julia Ballinger wished to look into it, 
so dismounting she made her way to the brink, then 
sprang back with a sujDpressed scream, but quickly 
called out: "Oh I I thought it was a snake." When 
she returned she had in her hand what seemed to be 
a real snake; it was about fifteen inches long, and 
of brown color. It was a section of a vine that climbs 
the body of trees and is in snake-like parts, an almost 
perfect imitation, and they were growing on the trees 
around the pool. The ride was very pleasant in the 
early morning, but as the sun rose higher the heat 
became oppressive and I had to slacken pace. So 
Dr. Thompson and footman pushed on to have din- 
ner ready, and Julia Ballinger and I moved more 
slowly, resting in the shade occasionally, and about 
noon we made the village all right, but as usual, tired, 
hot and hungi'v. A bowl of first-class chicken soup 
revived ns, and we rejoiced in making the cart line 
in safety. 

After a few hom-s we monnted the cart and 
started on the long, rough ride, in the same cart and 
with the same headlong driver. We started at a 
lively trot, to coA'er as much ground as possible be- 
fore night. On we pounded for an hour or so, when 
a rival cart came up and attempted to pass us in the 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 585 

dust. In an instant our driver's eyes flashed and 
lie seemed on Hre. With a long, shrill ''halloo," he 
flourished his long whip, lashed his mules into a dead 
run, and for a time the race was wild and furious. 
The two carts were abreast in a road twenty-live feet 
wide and very rocky. 1 expected to see the carts 
wrecked at once, for they bounced and bounded like 
foot balls, with a deafening clatter. I was sitting 
by the driver and saw the whole thing. The rival 
cart frequently bounded a foot high when striking 
bowlders, and I had to be diligent to business to keep 
my seat. This continued for several miles, when our 
driver headed oft' his rival and took the center of 
the road, but still on the run. 

At last the other cart turned down a fork road 
with a shrill shout of detiance and disappeared, the 
mules still running. We soon toned down to a reg- 
ular trot again, and none too soon for me, for it was 
taxing my powers of endurance rather severely. It 
was the wildest ride I ever made on wheels and I do 
not want a second experience, yet I must confess that 
when I saw^ the carts were indestructible and the mules 
seemed made of steel, I entered into the spirit of the 
race and wanted our driver to win, almost forget- 
ting my bumps and bruises. After the race we 
jogged monotonously on, made the relay, took lunch, 
rested and reached Izama! on time. With the ex- 



536 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

citement of the race and night coming on, there was 
little opportunity to take notes on the way. We 
stayed with the same lady at Izamal that we did go- 
ing down. She welcomed us back and seemed pleased 
to have an American lady in her house who could 
speak her own language, and she kindly prepared 
an early lunch for us to meet the train. The run 
from Izamal was made in about three hours, but we 
were too full of what we had heard, felt and seen to 
give much attention to things by the way, excepting 
to see ruins, though all bear the same general outline. 
When we arrived at our former quarters we re- 
sumed housekeeping and resting for a few ilays. 
Xotwithstanding we had a rough trij) we f(nind our- 
selves none the worse for it physically, l)ut we began 
to look at Yucatan in a new light, for it had to us 
become to the western continent what Egypt and 
Greece are to the old world. Yea, far more, for there 
had opened up to our astonished minds a prehistoric 
past that was revolutionizing all former ideas and shak- 
ing our faith in much of modern philosophy. We 
were also beginning to compare the character of the 
Spaniard as a murderer and destroyer in the new 
world, with the Mohammedan of the old, and were 
ready to decide that if it were possible for either to 
excel the other in wickedness, the Spaniard was ahead, 
and would receive the greater condemnation in the 
final day of retribution. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 537 

While resting in Merida we enjoyed the cool 
evening sitting nnder the green trees in the plaza, 
watching the ever-changing scene that passed before 
us, and in looking into the faces of strange people, to 
whom a double interest was attached. Sometimes we 
sat near a group engaged in animated conversation, 
and my niece would interpret to me. At other 
times she told me the comments that were made about 
us. Although they were not always complimentary, 
yet it enabled us to see ourselves as they saw us. In 
the market we heard the gossip and news from neigh- 
boring tow^ns and villages. All the time the people 
never dreamed that their conversation was being 
turned into Anglo-Saxon as fast as they spoke. In 
this way we gained an insight into home life and the 
home thoughts of that quiet, simple, civil people, nor 
did we ever grow weary of studying that Avonder- 
ful race, whose antiquity we had discovered went 
so far back into the unknown past, and who have 
remained unchanged through so many thousands of 
years, for in their oldest paintings on the ruins the 
form and feature is a perfect photograph of the liv- 
ing race of to-day. The sandaled foot, prehensile toe, 
the bare-headed women, their single, flowing gar- 
ments, the plumes of feathers worn as ornaments for 
the head on state occasions, are all painted on the 
stuccoed wall, a perfect type of the living reality. 
All, all was wonderful. 



538 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

There were two national festivals approaching, 
and active preparations for the occasions were being 
prosecuted. We were much interested in the musical 
department, though thev have music bv the mili- 
tary band everv evening. Private bands were prac- 
ticing for the coming events, and in this connection 
came in one of the strange incidents of my life. I 
had heard the brass bands in Cairo, Egypt, try to 
recall the lost melodies of Memnon's harp, the glad, 
triumphal songs of the Christian pilgi'ims returning 
from Jerusalem, and of the devout Mohammedans 
coming from their sacred shrines. I had also heard 
the sweet notes of the Dorian flute on the Grecian 
hills, the wild, barbaric notes of the Turcoman and 
Cossack of the Caspian, the national airs of all the 
nations of Europe and from early childhood our own 
grand tunes, but when I heard the soft, sweet, low 
melodies of the Maya there was a new revelation, 
my spirit caught the echo of a lost sweetness that once 
filled the soul of the vanished civilization. It came 
to my ear like the sad wail of a conquered race, and 
called to mind the lament of the captives by the 
rivers of Babylon when they thought of the lost and 
fallen glory and beauty of Jerusalem. 

In listening to the mournful undertones in their 
music and songs, and in looking into the faces of 
those around me, I felt oppressed with inexpressible 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 539 

sadness. In their fallen, ruined conditio^ there was 
much that was l)right and beautiful. The question 
came up again and again: What were they in their 
glorious prime, when tower and temple were new 
and the glad songs of happy thousands were heard 
on the soft evening air^ It is truly a sad thing to 
see the crumbling ruins of a once mighty people, 
and a conquered, broken remnant still lingering 
among them. It was with a feeling of relief that 
we turned away from this line of thought aud be- 
gan preparing for a second trip off into the interior, 
where the doctor assured us we would still find rough 
traveling and possibly new experiences, but gave it 
as his opinion that we were equal to the trip and could 
endure its privations. 

In making preparations for our trip to Uxmal 
ruins, the most essential thing was a well-lilled lunch 
basket, supplies being scarce at that point, as it was 
near the frontier, where there were many soldiers and 
much excitement. The distance was seventy miles 
by rail and twenty-two by cart, nearly south from 
Merida. We took the train at 2 p. m. and ran down 
to Ticul by 5 p. m., through a much better cultivated 
country than toward Chichen-Itza. There were many 
large fields of wheat, rye and barley, with less ground 
given to com and sisal. In addition to the rural 
beauty along the way, we were surprised to see so 



540 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

many ruins towering up out of the forests and in the 
open lands, in groups of five, ten and fourteen, and 
in every group there was a large pyramid with its 
square-chambered edifice on top. They were from 
one to three hundred feet high, many still well pre- 
served but some very much broken. A majority of 
the pyramids in Yucatan, in the small groups, are 
from seventy-five to one hundred and fifty feet high. 
Occasionally one is three hundred feet in height, 
but this is where there has been a great center of 
population. Everywhere they show the same general 
outline of architectural design. We were scarcely 
ever out of sight of the ruins, showing that the coun- 
try had once been densely populated, an almost con- 
tinuous city, for there were places that half the sur- 
face of the country was covered with wreckage of 
buildings. Xearly all the stone fences are constructed 
from the ruins; they are made up of carved pillars 
and pieces of cornice. There is evidence of ancient 
highways crossing the country. Like the old caravan 
routes in Palestine and Syria, the solid rock is worn 
smooth b'^ the bare and sandaled feet of the multi- 
tudes that have passed over it. In more than one 
place entire villages have been built of the ruins of 
a pyramid on its teiTaced foundation, where the an- 
cient wells have been found and cleaned out. As 
successive ruins and evidence of former life were 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 541 

passed, the thought of the riurriLer of human beings 
who had lived in that country became oppressive, for 
with each individual had been labor, care, anxiety, 
pain and death. And the question came: Why had 
they Hved, toiled and died^ Had it all been in vain? 
Is the world better for it^ 

When we reached Ticul another surprise awaited 
us. Instead of being an unknown railroad station 
it was in the midst of the ruins of a once vast city. 
Far off to the north and west many square miles are 
covered with ruined heaps, so much so that a great 
deal of the ground cannot be cultivated. We spent 
the night with a wealthy man who owned, and w^as 
reading, a Protestant Bible, and he and his family 
Avere very glad to have us there on .account of my 
niece being able to speak their language. The old 
gentleman took a long lesson in a better pronuncia- 
tion of Spanish, wdiile he helped her in the Maya 
tongue. After that the wife and daughters, with 
some oi the neighbors, eagerly gathered around Julia 
Ballinger, asking an endless variety of questions about 
her teaching, the States, and why we were going to 
Uxmal, etc. She was the first American lady they 
had seen who could talk wath them about home life. 

Early next morning we secured the one idle cart 
in town and began our twenty-two mile drive. We 
found the road much better than anv we had seen 



542 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

ill the country, and what was still more pleasing we 
had a sensible, practical driver, with a cool wind in 
our faces, so we made a quick trip, passing over a 
range of foothills thrown out from the mountains 
to the west. At 10 a. m. we reached the village, 
one and one-half miles from Uxmal, took a lunch, 
watered the mules and then drove on. The first sight 
we had was of the great pyramid, with its square 
edifice on top giving it a peculiarly airy look. It is 
not three hundred feet high, but its fonn makes it 
look much higher. A fiight of stone steps on the east 
side leads to the top. These we ascended and looked 
down upon one of the grandest scenes in the world. 
Within the radius of a mile are fourteen vast build- 
ings, som-e of them nearly perfect, others badly broken 
and crumbling. They stand on the edge of a green 
forest, lone, silent and desolate, so vast in extent and 
representing such an incalculable amount of human 
labor that it impresses the mind in a way words can- 
not express. Beyond those near at hand the glass 
brought to view about one hundre<l more, which were 
shut off from examination by the impenetrable 
jungles. We stood long in wonder, gazing on the 
bewildering and sublime view, for the longer we stood 
the more impressive became the feeling of utter desola- 
tion that hung over the ruins. Somehow this scene 
of wreck came to us in a way that, with our feelings 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 543 

of sadness, there was also one of joy and thankful- 
ness that we had lived to stand on that spot and we 
involuntarily ran over a list of our friends whom we 
would have been glad to have had with us, that we 
might have looked into their faces and read their 
thoughts. 

The pyramid had a smaller edifice on top than 
usual, and its chambei*s and walls were rapidly fall- 
ing into a shapeless heap. On the western face, twenty 
feet below the top, are two chambers running back 
into the body of the pyramid, which seem to have 
been held in high estimation. They are more elabo- 
rately sculptured than others and the approach is 
well guarded. The steps and doorway are but little 
worn by use, showing them to have been objects of 
special care. From their doors we looked down into 
the great quadrangle, some two hundred feet from 
the base of the pyramid. These rooms are nearly 
perfect; the carving, painting and writing, to a good 
eye, is still distinct. We next went to the college, 
entered the open court one hundred feet wide and 
three hundred long, surrounded by massive buildings 
one story high, excepting the north side, where there 
are two stories. The second one is back from the 
front so as to give a broad promenade. There are 
numerous rooms on all the sides of the court opening 
inward. The court is entered bv one main door in 



544 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

the middle of the south front. There are two other 
smaller doors, one in each end near the northeast and 
northwest corners. The principal door is really two, 
with one entrance, and has been closed by massive 
shutters which swung in stone sockets. Every square 
foot of the walls facing the inner courts of all the 
buildings is beautifully ornamented. Some of the 
designs on the facades are not surpassed anywhere 
or by any people, which is all the more astonishing, 
as the w^ork is done in the rough limestone of the 
countay. The tracing of vines, wreaths of flowers, 
fruit and figures of men and women, birds and ser- 
pents, are so life-like in design and so perfect in finish 
that our astonishment was ever on the increase. 
Across the west facade are two plumed serpents carved 
in stone, but so true to nature that, seen from a disr 
tance, they seem to be living types. They are twined 
together in such a natural position that no painter 
has since equalled them, and they were carved thous- 
ands of years ago and are yet nearly perfect in all their 
parts. 

The college is surrounded by massive walls which 
extend out to smaller buildings, and to raised terraces 
on which may have been tents, arbors, awnings, or 
wooden buildings that were perishable. The con- 
necting walls are fifteen to twenty feet thick, and on 
a level with the floor of the inner court. The two 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 545 

most interesting walls connect the g-overnor's house 
with the college, which stands about tifteen rods south. 
The two walls have been twentv-live feet high, and 
had many chambers in them opening into the avenue. 
These walls are badly broken, but must have formed 
a beautiful passage-way in their perfection, and one 
can easily imagine students oi'cupying the room while 
attending college. 

The governor's house (for lack of a better name) 
is one of the distinctive figures among the ruins in 
America, both in its structure and the immense la- 
bor it has taken to build it. First, there is a solid mass 
of concrete 400x500 feet and sixty feet high, then 
in the center of this is another mass of concrete 
200x350 feet, raised six feet high, the longest way 
being north and south. On top of the central terrace 
is the governor's house, 300x(30 feet and fifty feet 
high, with walls six to eight feet through, with a 
flat roof eight feet thick above the points of the high- 
est arches. Through the center of the building, run- 
ning lengthwise, is a solid wall eight feet thick at the 
base, but increasing in thickness as it goes upward 
until it fills all the space between the chamber, which 
is lengthwise like all the others; thus there is a ('en- 
tral mass of immense density. We must remember 
that this building is concrete, cased on the outside 
v/ith hewn stone and stuccoed inside, and we get some 



546 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

idea of its solidity. Througli the center, east to west, 
is a hallway with a pointed arch, though not so high 
as the chambers. The two doors to this hall have 
been profusely ornamented, especially the one fac- 
ing the east, which must have been dazzling in its 
splendor before the brutal Spaniard destroyed it. 
Beautiful fragments still lay in heaps before the door- 
way. The west door, in like manner, was blown to 
pieces by gunpowder, and the very stones seem to 
appeal to heaven for retribution on the destroyer. 
The north end, facing the college, is finely decorated, 
and the high doorway to a square is quite imposing; 
the chamber seems to have been a public place, as 
the doorways and walls are much worn. The main 
body of the building is laid off in chambers forty to 
sixty feet long, twelve to tw^enty wide, and thirty feet 
high, terminating in pointed arches. There is but 
one door to each room, six by eight feet, with no 
other opening for either light or air; this is the case 
with the rooms in all the ruins. There is a singular 
arrangement of stone rings and hooks around the 
walls, with cavities where strong, wooden beams have 
extended across that would have been capable of sus- 
taining much weight. 

Some of the most perfect and marvelous paint- 
ings are found in these long, dark, high chambers. 
This house confirmed my opinion that the ancient 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 547 

i\la,\a understood electricity, and lighted up these 
otherwise dark cdianibers with it, as the appliances 
for using it are there to speak for themselves. When 
Dr. Thompson and Le Plongeon copied the paintings 
they could not get light strong enough from oil or 
gas, so they had to arrange a system of reflectors to 
throw the sunlight into the dark corners, which 
brought out the marvelous coloring, and drew aside 
the veil for a moment which covered the past in ob- 
scurity. A few hundred feet southwest from the 
governor's house, and connected with the lower ter- 
race by a maseive wall, stands a flat-topped pyra- 
aiiid, fifty feet higher than the house. In one side 
of the connecting wall there are chambers, some much 
broken, others perfect, but covered with bushes and 
rubbish. The wall and pyramid is overgrown with 
trees and vines, though an ascent can be made by 
broken steps on the east and west side. Beyond this 
pyramid, and connected by parallel walls, formin^r 
an avenue, are two other large edifices in a fair state 
of preservation, and elaborately oraamented with new 
and ever-changing designs. 

Xorth and west from the college extends another 
line of ruins, massive and grand, varied enough in 
form to keep up a pleasing variety in the whole group, 
while all seem as if designed by one mind, there is 
no monot.)ny. From the top of either pyramid the 



548 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

view is grand, and cannot be described for lack of 
words and standards of comparison, for everything 
is wholly different from ruins of any other part of 
the world, or any other age. The effect on the mind 
and eye of the giant ruins rising up out of the for- 
est in lone, silent and desolate gTandeur delles descrip- 
tion; it cannot l)e put into words. Go where you 
would to take a view, it was always the same — im- 
mense, overwhelming and vast in extent. From 
every side, from every object came to us a conscious 
reminder that we were gazing on the ruins of a civi- 
lization once possessed of wisdom and refinement 
more glorious than our <:)wn, that with these ruins 
there perished a knowledge that may never come back 
to men: the highest attainments of the nineteenth 
century are but the alphabet of the ancient Maya. 

It was with feelings of regret that we had to 
pass by so many beautiful objects that would \ye highly 
valued by college and private museums, but the gov- 
ernment has forbidden their removal and there is 
little chance to have them handled carefully. The 
natives value them no more than other stones, so we 
left them where they had falkn, possibly to look up 
into the faces of tourists for generations to come. 
While we were wandering about and climbing over 
the wonderful things that strewed the ground on every 
.side, we were aroused by the rumble of distant thun- 



OP ADDISON COFFIN. 549 

der coming from the west, and soon dark clouds .came 
drifting over the hills and we had to hurry to the 
house in the village. We had arranged to make a 
night trip back to Ticul, but the storm, coming on 
v^'ith heavy rain, compelled us to stay with the na- 
tiA^es. AVe were near the hostile borders where there 
was much excitement and many soldiers in camp. 
The situation was dangerous and we had been ad- 
vised not to stop over night in that vicinity. As 
darkness fell wild-looking natives came in and watched 
all our movements with eager curiosity, and finally 
I became uneasy about our lunch basket, and possi- 
bly our money, for there was evident excitement 
among them. My niece smiled at my fears, say- 
ing if they did take our lunch we were only twenty- 
two miles from supplies, then added: ''Uncle, just 
sit down and be easy; after supper I will teach thee a 
lesson of William Penn Quakerism, and show what 
can be done with these fierce-looking natives." "O, 
ye of Httle faith." 

By this time it was nearly dark and a circle C)f 
faces was seen gazing in through the door. Julia 
Ballinger stepped outside right into their midst, and 
began talking to them in their native tongue. She 
asked them about their work, the corn planting and 
the common things of life, and told them how the 
same things were done in the States. They were 

36 



550 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

at first dumb with astonishment, for they had never 
before heard a white lady speak their language, or 
one who would notice them at all. After their sur- 
prise was over they were eager to ask questions. Who 
ai'e you, and wdiy are you here alone? Why do 
you travel without a guard i Your driver tells us you 
go unarmed, is it so? How do vou manage to travel 
that way ( This is a sample of the character of their 
questions. 

Julia told them we trusted in the Lord to 
take care of us: that He had })romised to pro- 
tect all who put their trust in Him; that I had trav- 
eled many years and in many lands, always unarmed; 
that the Lord had taken care of me, and would con- 
tinue to do so. This was a revelation to them; they 
had never heard such teaching before, never seen 
a man who was not armed when away from home. 
They shook their heads in bewildeniient and coidd 
not comprehend it, but the wild look left their faces 
and was replaced by one of kindly astonishment. 
Without l)eing conscious of how time passed, she 
talked for nearly an hour and then bade them a kind 
good-night, and the impressive lesson was ended, one 
that I shall always remember and these natives 
will never forget. We slept in lianmiocks that night 
with no thought of fear. 

Xext morning when the cart came around for 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 551 

starting the native men were standing in line, ready 
to bid us good-bye and to look with wide-open, kindly 
eyes into the face of the ^Svonderful" lady. They 
called after us as a parting blessing, ''May your lives 
be happy," and we were soon out of sight on our re- 
turn trip. 

The storm was the first of the approaching rainy 
season. It cleansed things from the accumulated 
dust of several months, cooled the air, revived vege- 
tation and loosened the tongue of the sone" birds among 
the trees. We felt so refreshed by the change of 
aiT that we walked up the rocky side of the foot- 
hills, and enjoyed the pounding and bouncing over 
the stony descent and the trot back to Ticul. We 
spent another night with our kind friends in the town, 
who were so pleased with Julia's talks with them that 
they refused compensation, and gave us a standing in- 
vitation to stay with them if we should come again. 

An earlv train next morning landed us in Mer- 
ida once more. This time we went to the Presby- 
terian Mission, the native minister in charge having 
invited us to make our home with him; his wife could 
speak some English, and she wanted to practice. We 
stayed several days and were pleased with the ])r<is)Kr- 
ity of the mission. AVe attended some of their relig- 
ious services and, at their request, gave them talks 
on my travels in Palestine, Julia inteii>reting. 



552 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

Many of their questions were at first a surprise. 
One thing they wanted to know was: "If the hole 
made by the cross of Christ was still there, and if blood 
was still coming out of it and running down the hill." 
This they had heard from early childhood from the 
Catholic priests. The new converts in particular 
were much astonished t(j hear me say it was a false- 
hood. 

We now applied our minds to the question of where 
we should go after the coming festivals were over: 
if we were going farther south it was time to be mov- 
ing, for hot weather was near at hand. We felt that 
our personal visits, together with what we had seen 
in Dr. Thompson's photographs and charts, had given 
us a tolerably clear idea of the ruins of Yucatan, and 
we would visit some others on the homeward trip, 
so the question was whether we would go south or 
not. Just at this juncture news came that the out- 
break in Xicaragua w^as more serious than expected, 
and would probably inteiTupt travel for some months. 
This settled the question, with little regret on our 
part, for we had seen more than we expected, and 
much of it was so novel and wonderful that we would 
suffer no loss by digesting it, and we trusted to go- 
ing south at another time, for it seemed that the more 
we traveled the more instinictive our discoveries be- 
came. As we read up the subject, and the more we 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 553 

talked with Ainerieaii and Englisli residents, the 
more amazed we became to find such astonishing 
things so near home, and yet so little known, even 
bj professed scientists. Every day's experience only 
added to our conviction that Yucatan has more <;£ 
the truly marvelous than any other country. 

While on this subject 1 wish to say that I was 
so fortunate as to meet Clayton Byers, of Onzaba, 
Mexico, who is a national surveyor, employed by the 
government to locate old Spanish grants, and to lay 
them off in sections, as was done with our public land. 
He had been through the Mexican states and South 
America, and had visited and studied the ruins. He 
is a man of close observation, discerning mind and 
retentive mem<jrv. He unliesitatinglv confimied my 
opinion that Mexico and Central America have more 
interesting ruins than any other part of the world. 
He, too, had taken the bearings of the meridian on 
w^hich they were built, and gave it as twelve degrees 
east of the meridian' of to-day; with imperfect in- 
struments I had made eleven degrees. He further 
stated that as far as he knew, there were no ruins 
built on a meridian west of the present one. 

When T studied Burritt's Geography of the 
Heavens I learned that Thuben was the ])olar st^ir 
2300 years B. C, so it is evident that the ruins were 
built long before that time. If we run our pole back 



554 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

through Thiiben until it is opposite a point twelve 
degrees east of the present pole, where will we be? 
Is it not possible that this would confirm Le Plon- 
geon's suggestion that the Maya race was in Yuca- 
tan 18,000 vears a^o, as he thinks the records will 
prove? Startling as this may seem, the record has 
been engraved in stone by skillful hands. From 
my observation and reading, I agree with Byers in 
his assertion that, nowhere in the world have ruins 
been found built on a meridian west of the merid- 
ian of to-dav. Investigation along this line will set- 
tle the question as to how long man has been a builder. 
I am convinced that the architecture in Yucatan 
originated there, that no part was copied, and that 
people lived in Yucatan centuries before the first 
foundation stone was laid in Egypt, or before the 
Hittite became a nation. The most astonishing thing 
is that the oldest ruins are the most perfect. The 
Maya civilization had no infancy; it came from the 
hand of the CVeator and had its beginning before 
war was known, for there is no trace of a defensive 
wall, citadel or fortification. This remarkable fact 
had astonished Clayton Byers. All the other ruins 
of the world have walls and battlements, citadels and 
defensive towers showing they were built by men 
of war, and not of peace. 

The first of the tw<t national festival was IMardi 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 555 

Gras, introdiu'ed by the Spaniards, and (Conducted 
much after the st\de of our southern states. It con- 
sisted mainly of hideous burlesque and buffoonery 
that took some odd shapes and frightful hobgoblins 
peculiar to the Catholic superstition. It lasted two 
(lavs, the second being called the battle of flowers. 
The first dav was mostly nonsensical and disgust- 
ing, but the second was beautiful and exciting, (xreai 
towers, domes, pyramids and triumphal arches of flo\v- 
ers were mounted on hacks, carts and express wagons 
and drawn throui>h the sitreets amid the shouts and 
greetings of thousands of delighted people. Hun 
dreds were in coaches and in other vehicles bedecked 
with garlands, and as they passed they threw hand- 
fuls of natural and [)aper flowers into the faces of the 
crowd, who in turn showered flowers over the ve- 
hicles and the faces of the passers-by; one never knew 
when a handful of flowers would be dashed into his 
face. During the four hours this noisy and delightfui 
pastime continued, hundreds of boys and girls were go- 
ing through the crowds with baskets of flowers on theii* 
heads, thus keeping up the material for the sport, hi 
an hour after the festival closed there were scores of 
men and women on the streets sweeping up the great 
masses of crushed flowers and scattered pai)er, which 
was carted off to the dump ground, and bv night 
there was but little sign of the day's frolic. Thougd) 



556 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

short-lived, the populace looked iipnii it as a gi-and 
success, and all were happy, especially the children. 
While it lasted tliev shonted with nnrestrained free- 
dom, covering themselves with fallen flowers and 
gathering loads to take home. A pleasins: trait of 
Maya character was shown in their thoughtful care 
of the children, exhibited by old and young, male 
and female. Of the thousands who ran wild and 
headlong through the streets few, if any, were hurt. 

The other festival was the great Maya national 
dance, which has been kept up for thousands of years 
with unerring regularity. In all the vicissitudes of 
the country that dance has been celebrated some- 
where, either in a cave or on a mountain top. It 
generally lasts two days, or a night and a day. It 
was held in a large building with an open, central 
court, in which stood a temporary music stand. 
Onlv full-blooded Mayas take part, and all are bare- 
headed and barefooted, with their simple garments 
of spotless white. The ceremony began with music, 
the bands rendering into modern meter some of their 
ancient national melodies, which seemed to be full 
of life, hope, patriotism and love. Then there were 
tunes of more recent times, but which had that luourn- 
ful under-tone of lament, as if wrung from the sad 
heart of a ruined, conquered race. Finally they 
pealed a stirring festal melody, that aroused the vast 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 557 

throng from the hush that had covered it; then the 
performers came out into a large, smooth and paved 
hall in pairs. For several minutes all stood still, 
then a few began stepping- out with a slowly-mea- 
sured, but graceful motion; others joined in the same 
slow movement, like a huge wheel starting an end- 
less line of shafts and wheels, and so on until the 
whole mass, as if by one common impulse, began 
unwinding, and deployed through the corridors and 
chambers until all were gone. The music fell to a 
lower key, then l)ack into the low, sad melodies, as 
though the scene was ended but suddenly it would 
rise to brighter, higher tones, and the head of the 
line of vanished dancers would come in sight, keep- 
ing time in the same swaying, graceful motion, and 
again wind up in the great hall, as at the begin- 
ning. Then another, though different, evolution 
would bo performed; then they would unwind and 
disappear again; and so the ceremony went on until 
after midnight. It was wonderful to witness the 
agility displaved, especially that of the voung women. 
Being without shoes, their light footfalls were scarcely 
heard on the polished floors. In some of the more 
active turns they seemed floating in the air, a wav- 
ing, swayino- mass of humanity. 

There were thousands of people looking on, but 
all were still and seemed bound bv some unseen in- 

36 



558" LIFE AND TRAVELS 

lliience. The inspiring music and the flutter of the 
bare feet was all that broke the silence, giving the 
scene a strange, unreal chai^acter; it seemed like look- 
ing through a glass on an invisible world. It was 
an interesting vision of young life, with all its youth 
and beauty, though we were saddened wdien we 
thought of the superstition and degradation that 
rested on them like a dark cloud. The second night 
the dance continued until daylight, and those who 
saw it reported that the music did not loose its magic 
melody, nor the young dancers grow weary. They 
closed with a gTand triumphal refrain, which rang 
out on the morning air like a shout of glorious ex- 
ultation. Four-fifths of the participants, male and 
female, were laboring people, a majority of the women 
were house maids and working girls, and the men 
w^ere engaged in every variety of labor common to 
the country. To strangers it seems impossible for 
working people to have such natural, gi-aceful mo- 
tions and skill in evolution in this intricate ceremony. 
The chief amusement of the children is to play dance, 
and as we looked into the back yards and inner courts 
we saw them practicing; girls from eight to twelve 
years of age were marvels of perfection in the art. 
Thus we saw that they entered into the spirit of this 
national pastime from childhood. ^liss Ballinger 
would often exclaim: ^'Oh, what a field for Chris- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 559 

tian work, with siioli good native ability to work with* 
think of those beantifnl girls growing up in ignoi'- 
ance an J degrading superstition; it makes my heart 
sick to think of it." 

One day when we had been to the outskirts of 
the city we came up behind the old cathedral fort, 
where men and women were excavating in a por- 
tion of the great ruin out of which the conquered 
Mayas had been compelled to build the cathedral and 
fort. AVe were surprised to learn that they had been 
compelled to construct a tunnel underground as a 
secret passage to a large cathedral three-fourths of 
a mile away, in which and through which many dark 
deeds were done. The passage is still there, but is not 
used. 

Merida seems to have been a noted place in past 
time, and many of the old highways radiated from 
that point; especially eastward and south it appears 
to have been as near the coast as any of the large 
cities. All the great cities were built inland, seem- 
ingly to avoid either something belonging to or com- 
ing from the sea. It is strange that they were not 
a maritime or commercial people, as the nations of 
the world now are. This strengthens our belief that 
they lived in a day when the human race had not 
filled the earth, and were all of the same language 
and kindred, and had not learned war and did not 
need to l)e on the defensive. 



560 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

The romantic story of a •'liiddeu nation'- ex- 
isting on the border of Yucatan, Chiapas and Guate- 
mala is not a myth, as some suppose, for there is a 
remnant living in an impregnable valley in the moun- 
tains, which has been held as a last retreat from 
the early history of the Maya race. Through all 
the wars, conquests and vicissitudes that have come 
to them, that stronghold was a last refuge, and has 
never been taken by an enemy, nor can it be so long 
as the present race holds it. That remnant is pure- 
blooded, and they still speak the original Maya lan- 
guage and hold their ancient religion, supposed to 
be idolatrous, though for many centuries no one from 
the outside has ever entered the valley and returned; 
they do not suifer their brother Catholics to go there. 
They come out t*) trade, sometimes go to neighbor- 
ing cities and attend festivals and gala days. They 
seem to be a finer, nobler-looking race than those 
outside, who have been conquered by successive 
enemies, yet living for so many thousand years in 
that besieged valley they have lost their civilization 
and history. 

The man named Furguson, who with a good 
glass peeped into the valley from a mountain-top, 
said it looked to be thirty miles long and twenty 
wide, surrounded by perpendicular cliffs two to three 
thousand feet high. It was a paradise of beauty, 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 561 

thickly dotted over with white villages, surrounded 
by gardens, fields and orchards. It seemed to have 
been especially formed for a last refuge in the hour 
of danger; their numbers are variously estimated 
from 50,000 to 40,000. Forty years ago, when a 
large number of Catholic Mayas rebelled against 
state taxation and church abuse, the '^hidden nation'* 
came out to the help of their brothers and were such 
shrew^d, fearless fighters that they soon over-ran two- 
fifths of the state, and the rebellious tribe still holds 
the territory, but the idolators returaed to their strong- 
hold, simply claiming the right to cultivate a part 
of the free land. 

There is but one natural entrance to the vallev, 
to the northeast. It is very narrow and between 
cliffs one to two thousand feet high, and one thous- 
and men could defend the pass against all the world, 
for it is beyond the reach of the heaviest gun, be- 
side the poisoned arroAv from a hidden archer Avould 
bring down an enemy like the pestilence that walks 
in the dark. These people speak the oldest language, 
and possibly they are the only pure blood in the world. 
There is one thing settled beyond a doubt, they will 
never accept a Christianity that has any connection 
with Roman Catholicism, for they have a perfect hat- 
red of it and believe all the outside world their secret 
enemies. 



562 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

The time came for us to bid adieu to our kind 
friends, so we left the pleasant city of Merida and 
came to Progresso, its shipping point, by rail, antici- 
pating the arrival of a Spanish steamer bound for 
Vera Cruz; it came in a few hours after our arrival. 
A^liile waiting for it we took another lesson from 
the natives. A porter, with wife and hve children, 
was sitting in the shade. My niece hailed him 
to carry our luggage down to the landing, and at the 
call he and all the family arose and came. The price 
being settled, we started, the porter in front, we 
next, and the wife and children following, discus- 
sing as they went as to how they would spend the 
fee, thirty cents in our money, so all could have some- 
thing to eat for their noon lunch. It was interest- 
ing, yet sad, to hear their simple, innocent reasoning 
and planning, and it seemed to be an ordinary event 
in their lives, with no brighter future before them. 

A low tide and chop sea compelled the steamer 
to anchor well out, and we had a rough trip through 
the breakers in crossing the waves. AVhen I reached 
the ship my head was so dizzy I could not walk for 
a short time, and others stronger than I were in the 
same condition. The steamer was thoroughly Span- 
ish in all respects, with Catholic bigotry predomin- 
ating, which was intensified by the Cuban war and 
Cuban refugees aboard going to Mexico, as a tern- 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 563 

purary i)lace uf safety from want and danger. 'J'here 
were a few English and American oassen^ers already 
on board, and their |)resence wa^s rather irritating'. 
The conditions were favorable for bad feeling, es- 
pecially towards Americans, and on Friday Miss Bal- 
linger brought things to a head. There was no meat 
of any kind on the table for breakfast; she called 
for beefsteak. The waiter replied rather haughtily 
and scornfulh" ''This is Friday, if you do hot know." 
She replied: "You may have all the Fridays you 
please, but I am not going to be hungry on account 
of your senseless superstition, understand that." 
This was spoken in Spanish, and some one instantly 
interpreted it into Ene*lish and French. In an in- 
stant there was a cheer all through the dining hall 
from the English, Americans, French and unbeliev- 
ing Spaniards. The effect was astounding to the 
bigoted Spaniard. All parties joined in praising the 
brave little American lady, and they had nuite a jol- 
lification. AVe had an abundant supplv of chicken 
and other meat for dinner and supper, and the 
pompous waiter was very polite the rest of the voy- 
age. The honorable Englishman leaned back the 
more on his dignity, the American increased the cloud 
of vile tobacco smoke by at least one-half, while the 
Frenchman was all a-\\dggle with his gesticulations 
whenever the American lady's reply was under dis- 
cussion. 



564 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

We had a pleasant voyage^ landing in Vera Cruz 
in the forenoon. Soon after noon we took the train 
and ran out to Orizaba, taking another route on the 
return, so as to see more of the country. Orizaba 
is one of the beautiful cities in the coffee region. 
We stopped there over night and until 11 a. m. next 
day, and enjoyed, the grand mountain scenery around. 
It is a grand summer resort for people from the low- 
lands or from any part of the wc^rld. a place not to 
be forgotten by tourists. 

Next day we took the train for Mexico City, 
where we made a brief stop and went by rail to 
Montara. There we had a glad, sad parting. Glad 
that we were safe and well, up to that point on the re- 
turn trip; sad to separate after so long companion- 
ship amid such grand and wonderful scenes. We 
both must now go Vvack to labor, care, anxiety and re- 
sponsibility. 

Miss Ballinger took an outgoing stage over the 
same route we had traveled in going, and had much 
the same kind of a rough trip, but finally reached Mat- 
amora safe and well, where she was received with 
joy and rejoicing by her friends, especially by Miss 
Dysart at the Presbyterian Mission. She found her 
school in good shape, and taking it altogether it had 
been a happy outing for her, and an opportunity for 
her young- lady pupils to try their skill in teaching. 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 565 

I returned by Laredo, San Antonio, Little Rock 
and St. Louis, arriving home safe and well with mem- 
ories that will not pass out of mind, and with pic- 
tures among the brightest and most beautiful of all 
my life, and my heart was full to overflowing of all 
gratitude to the Lord for bringing me home safe, as 
He had promised, if I would do His will in my simple 
way of dealing justly, loving mercy, and walking 
humblv before Him in my joumev. 



THE CLOSIi^G CHAPTER. 



(By his daughter, Ida Coffin Doan.) 

In loving remembrance of my father, Addison 
Coffin, who was born in Guilford county, N. C, first 
month, 22d, 1822, and died fourth month, 16th, 1897, 
at my home, Amo, Indiana. 

On the forenoon of a late winter day there was 
a sudden and unexpected commotion in our house- 
hold, and thi-ee little girls were seen flying through 
and around the house into the front yard, banging 
doors behind them or leaving them open to save time, 
all the while making such an outcry that no words 
could be understood. At last it became one glad shout 
of: '^Grandpa has come!" Then gTandpa could be 
seen, the girls about him, holding him so that he could 
scarcely walk; the youngest, a three-year-old, held the 
place of honor in his arms. Older people had no op- 
portunity for a word, though we felt something deeper 
than joy over the safe aiTival home once more of our 
dear father. 

At the earliest opjDortunity the horse and cow 
joined in the joyous welcome, each confident of an 
extra bit to eat or a loving pat. Even the cats purred, 
(666) 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 567 

arched their hacks and riibbt^d about his feet, in an- 
ticipation of attention. 'J'he regidar routine work 
for the day was much neglected in our eagerness to 
see and hear everything at once. Although worn 
and weary with his journey, he was ready to answer 
our many questions. For several days it was very 
difficult for him to keep warm, as the change of cli- 
mate had been sudden and very great. It was only 
with the coming' of the warm spring sunshine that 
he ventured out to work in the. garden and anioiig 
the young tree^. A sort of friendly rivalry existed 
between him aiid some old men about his age as to 
who should have the nicest garden, and yard. Who 
won the honor wdll remain one of the unsettled ques- 
tions, for each one was proud of his own work. Cer- 
tain, it is, that my father became so interested in hivS 
growing, out-door family that he was at home almost 
all of the summer, enjoying himself only as one with 
a contented and happy spirit can. When he was not 
doing self-imposed work out of doors he was reading 
or writing, or in some sort of friendly "row," as they 
call it, with the girls about some of their carelessness 
or mischief. 

He made some short visits among his friends 
near bv, but attempted no long trips. His open-air 
work brought him better health, the best he had en- 
joyed since his attack of jrrippe in the spring of '95. 



568 LIFE AND TRAVELS 

He attended nearly all tlie sessions of Western 
Yearly Meeting, and was mucli interested in the pro- 
ceedings. There he had the pleasnre of meeting 
many friends, both yonng and old. During the fall 
and winter he had quite a number of calls for talks 
on his travels, as he called them, before Farmers' In- 
stitutes, and in different neighborhoods, mostly in 
Western Illinois and Eastern Indiana. Such work 
seemed to cause him some weariness, but he main- 
tained his strength better than we anticipated. While 
school was in session he was frequently called upon 
to talk to the children about things of the far-away 
countries which he had seen. They seemed never to 
weary of his stories. In every sense he was the 
friend of children, in tender memory of the dear little 
ones who had gone a.way from his own family so 
early in life. He felt that in his childhood, child- 
happiness was toe much neglected. 

The last trip he took visiting and talking was in 
and about Oart.hage. Indiana, among relatives and 
friends, being gone about two weeks. Upon his re- 
turn home he told of the pleasure given him during 
his visit by the thoughtfulness and kindness of those 
with whom he mingled. It was early in March when 
he came home, and he appeared in usual health and 
spirits. The severe cold winds occasioned him much 
annoyance and disgust with the variable climate of 



OF ADDISON COFFIN. 509 

Indiana. Before tlie end uf Marcli those who were 
with him most discovered that some sort oi a change 
was coming over him. He was unlike iiimself in 
being dull and listless, often gi\ ing little heed to what 
was about him. It was with an effort that he aroused 
himself to work in tine weather with the things in 
which he was usually much interested. He was 
easily tired and would soon come in to rest. On the 
morning of the 10th of April he called me, and [ 
found him lying on his bed in a severe nervous chill. 
At first no serious thought was given to this sickne^^s 
except that he was unusually weak. The next morn- 
ing he appeared better and the medicine was having 
good effect, yet his strength was gone. We all felt 
hopeful until Tuesday night, when he became de- 
cidedly woi-se. One lung was showing signs of pneu- 
monia, though not apparently of a serious character. 
In the inability of his system to throw off disease, 
laj^ his danger. He appeared in a vague way to real- 
ize his condition, and i^ianifested his desire to get 
well in many ways. In the delirium of his last forty- 
eight houi-s, many names and various places were 
spoken of, some of days long gone by. He often 
wished to go home, though he was unconscious of 
the meaning of the words and of the nearness of 
that better home, where he would enjoy grander things 
than he had known here. He peacefully passed away 



570 LIFE AND TRAVELS' 

on tlie Kitlij into the jjortals of "The Xew Jeriisa-- 
lem," wliere there were many more of those he loved 
to greet him than he left on this side of the Valley 
of Death. Xot mam^ weeks before he went away, 
in a revival meeting, he spoke more truly than he 
knew when he said his Avork was done and that he 
was only resting and waiting. 

He did not need to give a farewell testimony 
in regard to his future, for his life through many years 
had given assurance of his abundant entrance into the 
City of God. 

Thus ende<:l a Christian life begun more than 
half a century before in the old New Garden meet- 
ing, in Xorth Carolina, through the preaching of 
Nathan Hunt. It was upon Easter Sunday, a beau- 
tiful day, that we laid him to rest in the little ceme- 
tery near Hadley, Indiana, and not far away from 
the place he always called ''home,'- in Indiana. It 
was Nathan H. Clark, grandson of him who gave my 
father inspiration for right living, that stood above 
the still fonn of his old friend — himself an old man 
with dim eyes and white hair, and gave out words 
of comfort to the living. He spoke of God's gracious 
companionship and help toward those who love and 
truf;t in him, and the faith which gives us the a^c- 
tory. The face and form is gone, but the benedic- 
tion of the life is still with us. 



JMoi-iq^ ro ^^I'Kor^, 



^be undersigned ma[^e a ^PESIALTY 
of manufacturing boo(^s for 0UTH0RS. 
^bis ^ives tbe outbor all tbe profits tbere 
may be In it, instead of tbe mere pittance 
of a royalty. Qutbors will do well to co 
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