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gether under a California sky with the Roman Campagna. Throughout this sweet desolation reigned a visible and audible quiet which made our horses' hoofs seem noisy. Between Yreka and the Klamath River — a narrow, rapid stream, recalling some portions of the Housatonic, which we intersected about noon, and along which we rode for an hour—we met only two , or three silent horsemen and as many eremetic woodchoppers. Turning north from the Klamath, we dined at a miserable settlement called Cottonwood, around which for miles in every direction departed gold hunters had burrowed till the ground was a honey-comb, or more properly a last year's hornets' nest, since there was no sign of honey in the cells, and, from what a most dejected native told us of the yield, never had been any to speak of Leaving dreary Cottonwood with even greater pleasure than we had felt in abandoning Yreka, we began ascending the slope toward the Oregon line. At every mile the country grew lovelier. California seemed determined to make our last impressions of her tender. The bare, brown rocks became densely wooded with oaks and evergreens. Late in the afternoon we came to broad meadows of such refreshing deep-green grass as we had not seen before since we left the rich farming lands of the Atlantic side, and the level golden bars which lay on them between forest edges made us homesick with memories of peaceful Eastern lawns at sunset. After crossing several miles of such meadows, and the quiet brooks which ran through them, we traversed a number of strange low ridges, undulating in systematic rhythm, like a mountain-chain making a series of false starts prior to the word “go,” reached the true base of the Siskiyou Mountains, and began our final climb out of the Golden State. The road was very uneven, rocky, cut up by rivulets from the higher ridges, and in most places only a rude dug-way, with a rocky wall on one side, and a butment of thickly wooded débris steeply descending to a black, brawling torrent on the other. But we did not trouble ourselves with the road. The wild beauty of the forest absorbed us on either hand; and we were astonished at the rapid transition which the leaves suddenly took on, from the dry, burnt look, characteristic of the end of the California dry season, to autumnal splendors of red and yellow, hardly rivaled by the numberless varieties of tint in our own October woods. Just as the sun sank out of sight, we reached a lofty commanding ridge, stopped to rest, turned around and saw Shasta looming grandly up out of the valley twilight, his icy forehead all one mass of gold and ruby fire. It was one of the grandest mountain sights I ever looked on : such a purple hush over the vast level below us; such colossal broad shadows on the giant's foot; such a wonderful flame on that noble, solitary head, which, but for the unbroken outlines leading up to it out of the twilight, might have been only some loftier cloud catching good-night sun-glimpses at half-way up the firmament. Good-night from Shasta! Alas, not only to the sun, but to us! We felt a real pang, as we confessed to ourselves that we were now looking upon this noblest and serenest, if not loftiest of all the mountains in our travel, for the last time in years, – perhaps the last forever. We gazed wistfully till ad
monished by the deepening twilight; then, as Shasta became a shadow on the horizon, plunged silently into the dense woods again, climbed to the Siskiyou summit, and, descending through almost jetty darkness, were in Oregon.
ON THE COLUMBIA RIVER, .
I HAVE never known, nor seen any person who did know, why Portland, the metropolis of Oregon, was founded on the Willamette River. I am unaware why the accent is on the penult, and not on the ultimate of Willamette. These thoughts perplexed me more than a well man would have suffered them, all the way from the Callapooya Mountains to Portland. I had been laid up in the backwoods of Oregon, in a district known as the Long-Tom Country — (and certainly a longer or more tedious Tom never existed since the days of him additionally hight Aquinas),— by a violent attack of pneumonia, which came near terminating my earthly with my Oregon pilgrimage. I had been saved by the indefatigable nursing of the friend I travelled with, – by wet compresses, and the impossibility of sending for any doctor in the region. I had lived to pay San Francisco hotel prices for squatter-cabin accommodations in the rural residence of an Oregon landholder, whose tender mercies I fell into from my saddle when the disease had reached its height, and who explained his unusual charges on the ground that his wife had felt for me like a mother. In the Long-Tom Country maternal tenderness is a highly estimated virtue. It cost my comrade and myself sixty dollars, besides the reasonable charge for five days' board and attendance to a man who ate nothing and was not waited on, with the same amount against his well companion. We had suffered enough extortion before that to exhaust all our native grumblery. So we paid the bill, and entered on our notebooks the following Mem. “In stopping with anybody in the Long-Tom Country, make a special contract for maternal tenderness, as it will invariably be included in the bill.” I had ridden on a straw bed in the wagon of the man whose wife cultivated the maternal virtues, until I was once more able to go along by myself-paying, you may be sure, maternal-virtue fare for my carriage. During the period that I jolted on the straw, I diversified the intervals between pulmonary spasms with a sick glance at the pages of Bulwer's “Devereux” and Lever's “Day's Ride.” The nature of these works did not fail to attract the attention of my driver. It aroused in him serious concern for my spiritual welfare. He addressed me with gentle firmIleSS : — “D'ye think it's exackly the way for an immortal creatur’ to be spendin’ his time, to read them novels?” “Why is it particularly out of the way for an immortal creature ?” “Because his higher enterests don't give him no time for sich follies.” " “How can an immortal creature be pressed for time 2" “Wal, you'll find out some day. G'lang, Jennie.” I thought I had left this excellent man in a metaphysical bog. But he had not discharged his duty, so he scrambled out and took new ground. “Now say, - d’ syou think it's exackly a Christian way of spendin' time, yourself?”