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Sketches and Tales Illustrative of Life in the Backwoods of New Brunswick Gleaned from Actual Observation and Experience During a Residence Of Seven Years in That Interesting Colony   By: (1818-1897)

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Gleaned From Actual Observation And Experience During A Residence Of Seven Years In That Interesting Colony.


"Son of the Isles! talk not to me, Of the old world's pride and luxury! Tho' gilded bower and fancy cot, Grace not each wild concession lot; Tho' rude our hut, and coarse our cheer, The wealth the world can give is here."



Introductory Remarks New Brunswick by whom settled Remarks on State of Morals and Religion American Physiognomy The Spring Freshets Cranberries Stream Driving Moving a House Frolics Sugar Making Breaking up of the Ice First appearances of Spring Burning a Fallow A Walk through a Settlement Log Huts Description of a Native New Brunswicker's House Blowing the Horn A Deserted Lot The Bushwacker The Postman American Newspapers Musquitoes An Emigrant's House Unsuccessful Lumberer The Law of Kindness exemplified in the Case of a Criminal Schools The School Mistress The Woods Baptists' Association A Visit to the House of a Refugee The Indian Bride, a Refugee's Story Mr. Hanselpecker Burning of Miramichi The Lost One a tale of the Early Settlers The Mignionette Song of the Irish Mourner A Winter's Evening Sketch The School mistress's Dream Library in the Backwoods The Indian Summer The Lost Children a Poem Sleigh Riding Aurora Borealis Getting into the Ice Conclusion

These sketches of the Backwoods of New Brunswick are intended to illustrate the individual and national characteristics of the settlers, as displayed in the living pictures and legendary tales of the country. They have been written during the short intervals allowed from domestic toils, and may, perhaps, have little claim to the attention of the public, save that of throwing a faint light upon the manners and customs of that little known, though interesting, appendage of the British empire. A long residence in that colony having given me ample means of knowing and of studying them in all their varying hues of light and shade. There, in the free wide solitude of that fair land whose youthful face "seems wearing still the first fresh fragrance of the world," the fadeless traces of character, peculiar to the dwellers of the olden climes, are brought into close contrast with the more original feelings of the "sons of the soil," both white and red, and are there more fully displayed than in the mass of larger communities. Of political, or depth of topographical information, the writer claims no share, and much of deep interest, or moving incident, cannot now be expected in the life of a settler in the woods. The days when the war whoop of the Indian was yelled above the burning ruins of the white man's dwelling are gone their memory exists but in the legend of the winter's eve, and the struggle is now with the elements which form the climate; the impulse of "going a head" giving impetus to people's "getting along" forcing the woods to bow beneath their sturdy stroke, and fields to shine with ripened grain, where erst the forest shadows fell; or floating down the broad and noble streams the tall and stately pine, taken from the ancient bearded wilderness to bear the might of England's fame to earth and sea's remotest bounds.

New Brunswick is partly settled by French Acadians from the adjoining province of Nova Scotia, but these, generally speaking, form a race by themselves, and mingle little with the others, still retaining the peculiarities of their nation, although long separated from it they like gaiety and amusement more than work, and consequently are rather poorer than the other inhabitants; but, of course, there are exceptions. In the winter I have often seen them on their way to market, with loads of frozen oysters, packed in barrels, and moss cranberries (rather a chance crop); but they looked happy and comfortable, and went singing merrily to the ringing of their horse bells... Continue reading book >>

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