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feet under the ground; but when the month of May, in the seventeenth year after their last appearance, returns, though in the interval streets should have been laid out, houses built, and pavements laid upon the soil which covers them, up they come, as if by one common impulse, at their appointed time, piercing their way through the matted sod, through the hard-trampled clay of the pathways, through the gravel between the joints of the stones and pavements, and into the very cellars of the houses, like their predecessors, to be a marvel in the land, to sing their blithe of love and enjoyment under the bright sun and amid the verdant landscape; like them, to fulfil the brief duties of their species, and close their mysterious existence by death."
Perhaps the most interesting and valuable collection of facts connected with the natural history, botany, mineralogy, and geology of the State of New-York, is to be found in the weekly periodical published here, under the title of “The Genesee Farmer," which may be called the Agricultural Journal of North America, and is one of the best-arranged and best-conducted publications of the kind that I have ever seen. This is in addition to the two daily newspapers, the Rochester Democrat, which is the Whig organ, and the Daily Advertiser, which is the Democratic organ, each having its weekly and semi-weekly abridgment for country circulation, and each being conducted with all the characteristic features of blind partisanship; seeing everything good in the measures of one set of men, and everything bad in the measures of another set ; and not allowing the existence of any error on their own side, nor any truth on that of their opponents.
The "Genesee Farmer,” however, avoiding all politics, and confining itself to agriculture and the varied branches of knowledge which can illustrate or advance the improvement of the natural productions of the earth, is a work which will be read a century hence with as much interest as now, and would be as acceptable to the student of nature in Paris or London as in Washington or NewYork. This excellent publication, with the illustrative report on the geology of the state recently issued, and the sketches of Rochester by Mr. O'Reilly, leave nothing to be desired on the peculiar branches of information on which they treat, and are alike honourable to the parties by whom they were written and compiled, as useful to the community, and creditable to the intelligence and well-directed inquiries of the state.
Journey from Rochester to Canandaigua.-Stay at.-Canandaigua an Indian Name.
Munificent Grant for the Support of Education -Canandaigua Academy.-Ontario Female Seminary.- Military Lands awarded to Soldiers of the Revolution.-Classic cal Names within this Tract.—Singular Names of Indian Chiefs.- Northern and Southern Tribes. --Reserve Lands and Annuities.- Remains of ancient Indian Forts. -Narrative of the “White Woman,” Wife of an Indian Chief,- Diseases among the Aborigines.-Conduct of the Whites to Indians.-Climate of Canandaigua.-Waterspout on the Lake.- Democratic Convention.--Newspapers.--Stage-coaches.-Engą lish and East Indian Acquaintances.-Sensitiveness of Americans.—House and Grounds of Mr. Greig.–Tablet to Patrick Colquhoun.-Removing Houses on Rolle ers.-Transfer of the Courthouse.- Removal of a Methodist Church and Steeple.
On the morning of Wednesday, the fifth of September, we left Rochester for Canandaigua by an extra-coach, and, passing over the same road as we had traversed in coming from thence, we performed the journey in about five hours, the distance being twentynine miles. The heat was scorching and the dust excessive, although only a week before there had been torrents of rain, and, on the preceding Monday night, a frost so sharp as to blight and destroy the young corn and buckwheat of the neighbourhood; so great are the changes even in this the mildest and most equable region of the state.
We remained three days at Canandaigua ; some of the principal inhabitants of which, hearing that I was going through their town on my way from Niagara to Utica, having urged me to remain there this period, if I could spare no more, to deliver three of my lectures on the countries of the East; and this brought me into the agreeable acquaintance of most of the leading individuals of the place. Through their courtesy and attention, we had an opportunity of visiting the remains of the ancient Indian forts, which still exist here within a mile of the town, as well as the borders of the lake, and several points of extensive and beautiful landscape views, We visited also the academy for the education of young gentlemen, and the seminary for the education of young ladies; and enjoyed ourselves, during our short stay, amid the cordial and pressing hospitalities of the resident families, whose chief regret appeared to be that we could not remain longer among them.
The Indian name, Canandaigua, signifies, in the language of the Senecas, by whom it was bestowed, “ the chosen place ;” and the first settlers have very wisely retained it, instead of giving it a new appellation, for none more appropriate than the one it bears could possibly be adopted. Nothing can be more beautiful than its situation; and the view of the town, the lake, the forests, and the surrounding country, from every elevated point of view in the vicinity, is really exquisite, so that Canandaigua well deserves the reputation
it enjoys of being one of the most beautiful villages in the United States, and, I think I might safely add, in the world.
In our former visit to this place, on our way from Saratoga to Niagara, a general description of the town was given, as well as a history of the first purchase of its territory from the Seneca Indians, by Phelps and Gorham, from Massachusetts.
The grandchildren of Mr. Phelps, as well as of Mr. Gorham, are still settled here, and are possessed of handsome landed estates in the town and neighbourhood. We had the pleasure of making their acquaintance, and felt from that circumstance an additional interest in all the details of the early history of the place. The portraits of both these founders are preserved in the Courthouse
, where they are suspended on each side of the portrait of Judge Howell, which occupies the centre; and their names are in universal veneration and respect.
One of many acts that will endear their names to posterity is that of their having made the munificent grant of 6000 acres of land for the purpose of building and endowing a public institution for the education of youth. It is from this grant that the “ Academy of Canandaigua" has arisen to its present condition and importance. This building stands in an enclosed space of ground near the main street, and at the entrance of the town from Rochester. It is a substantial brick building, with a frontage of about 150 feet, and three stories in elevation. It contains three large schoolrooms, two recitation-rooms, and forty-two rooms for students, besides a suite of private apartments for the principal and his family. There are six professors, in addition to the principal, employed in the tuition of the pupils, three of whom have obtained the degree of A.M., and one of A.B.
The pupils range from seven years to twenty-one in age, none being admitted before they can read well, so as to enable them to enter at once on their course of English studies. The other departments embrace geography, history, arithmetic, mathematics, chymistry, mineralogy, moral and intellectual philosophy, and the constitution and laws of the United States. A special department is devoted to the principles of teaching, this academy having been appointed by the state to be one of the Normal Schools for furnishing teachers to the common schools of the country. The whole cost to a pupil, including board and education, in all the departments taught, does not exceed 130 dollars, or 301. sterling, per annum; while to those who live with their parents, and have daily tuition only, the cost does not exceed 20 dollars, or 51. a year.
The number of pupils at present is about 150, and everything about the establishment, which I was permitted to inspect with the greatest freedom, appeared to be in the most perfect order.
There is also in Canandaigua an excellent institution for education, called “The Ontario Female Seminary.” This establishment
ONTARIO FEMALE SEMINARY.
was commenced by private means, without the aid of any grant such as that made for the male academy; but it receives every year a certain sum from the state, the amount of which depends on the number of its pupils studying the higher branches of knowledge, such as mathematics, the classics, and mental philosophy, and on the number of the establishments of education in the state possessing similar claims. The building is handsome, spacious, pleasantly situated, and combines all the advantages of a public institution and a private residence. The management is ably sustained by the two principals, who are highly esteemed for their competency and amiable characters, and they are assisted by nine teachers in the several departments over which they respectively preside, the whole being under the superintendence of a body of nine trustees.
The course of study pursued at this seminary resembles that of the female academy at Albany, and embraces all the branches of learning usually taught at our best public schools. The present number of the pupils is 180; and it speaks highly for the reputation of the establishment that these are from all parts of the United States, from Maine and New Hampshire to Ohio and Michigan, and from Pennsylvania and New-Jersey to Upper Canada; though, of course, the great majority are from the State of NewYork.
While looking over the names of the pupils—which, being printed in the catalogue and prospectus that is presented to visiters and inspectors, is, to a certain extent, public property, and may, therefore, without a breach of confidence, be commented on I could not fail to be struck with the number of what are usually called “ fine names" borne by the young ladies, and chiefly by those from the State of New-York; as if the taste that suggested the Greek and Roman names for the towns had infected parents with the desire to give equally fine names to their children. The following are examples, taken exactly as they occur in the list : Cornelia, Magdalena, Gloriana, Adelaide, Ascenath, Lavinia, Delia, Amanda, Miranda, Juliette, Lucinda, Lucretia, Elvira, Lydia, Evelina, Adeline, Isabella, Isaphene, Pauline, Adelia, Angeline, Emeline, Georgiana, Augusta, Philena, Levantia, Almira, and Pamelia.
Notwithstanding these fine names, however, which were not of their own choice, of course, and for the taste of which, whether good or bad, they are not responsible, there appeared, from their examinations and conversation, to be a fund of great good sense and propriety among them, with a thorough conception of the true end of education, considerable proficiency in the several branches of study to which they had devoted themselves, and great modesty and decorum of behaviour.
I could not learn that physical eclucation, in the stated daily practice of bodily exercises of any particular kind, was at all more
attended to here than in the female academy of Albany; and yet the young ladies, on the whole, looked stronger and healthier
, which may chiefly be attributed, perhaps, to the superiority of the air of the country to that of the town. Attached to the seminary is a small but well-selected library, a museum, in which mineralogical specimens, well-classified and arranged, are beginning to accumulate; and lectures on scientific subjects, by competent professors, are occasionally given, with experiments, for which they have a complete apparatus. The highest cost of the tuition in every branch is 143 dollars, or about 281., per annum, and for board in the most comfortable style, 117 dollars, or about 231., per annum, making together 511. sterling per year.
To the eastward of Canandaigua and Seneca Lake are portions of land, which, belonging to the State of New York, were set aside by act of Congress to be appropriated as bounty-lands to the surviving soldiers of the Revolutionary war, and hence it is called the Military Tract. This embraced twenty-eight townships, each township containing 100 lots of 600 acres each, exclusive of reservations, the whole area of land being equal to 1,680,000 acres. It includes several of the beautiful lakes of the state, especially the Seneca, Otisco, Owasco, Skaneatales, Onondaga, and Cayuga, as well as streams of great value, and mineral productions, including salt, gypsum, lime, marl, and iron ore. The act of Congress passed in 1776 awarded a certain bounty of the public lands to all the officers and soldiers of the Revolutionary army; but the State of New-York, wishing to make separate provision for such of her own citizens as served in this war, passed an act in 1783, awarding a fivefold proportion to that granted by the General Government of the United States, which was apportioned as follows: Privates and non-commissioned Major officers
Lieutenant-colonel An Ensign
6600 If the parties to whom these lands had been assigned bad gone to settle on them, or procured competent and trustworthy persons to clear and cultivate them at once, they would have furnished a handsome competency to the privates, and a large fortune to the superior officers. But with the characteristic imprudence of soldiers, most of the privates sold their portions to speculators for insignificant sums. Their patents, as soon as made out, were sold for eight dollars! and even so late as 1792 they were to be bought for thirty dollars! In 1800 they were not to be had for less than from three to five dollars per acre before they were cleared ; and now that most of them have been cleared and cultivated, the current price is from twenty to thirty dollars per acre.
It was in this military tract that the practice was first introduced
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