By Reuben Gold Thwaites
Nineteenth-century American shuttle literature offers attention-grabbing glimpses into the lives of standard humans and into the heritage of the nation's cost. Reuben Gold Thwaites's Afloat at the Ohio is an excellent instance of the style, wealthy in Ohio River personalities, legends, and background as noticeable via Thwaites's eyes. His six-week trip through skiff lined one thousand miles from Redstone, Pennsylvania, to Cairo, Illinois, the place the Ohio River meets the Mississippi. Thwaites's voyage echoes these taken by means of early explorers, pioneers, and settlers who unfolded the West via river shuttle from the East.This variation is a reprinting of the unique 1897 edition.
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Extra info for Afloat on the Ohio: an historical pilgrimage of a thousand miles in a skiff, from Redstone to Cairo
56 miles), where the proprietor kindly explained his methods, and talked freely of his business. It was the old story, too close a competition for profit, although the use of brick pavements is fast spreading. Fire clay available for the purpose is abundant on the banks of the Ohio all the way from Pittsburg to Kingston (60 miles). A few miles below New Cumberland, on the Ohio shore, we inspected the tile works at Freeman, and admired the dexterity which the workmen had attained. But what interested us most of all was the appalling havoc which these clay and iron industries are making with the once beautiful banks of the river.
W and I had some shopping to do Page 44 there, while the Doctor and the Boy remained down at the inevitable wharf-boat, and gossiped with the philosophical agent, who bemoaned the decadence of steamboat traffic in general, and the rapidly failing stage of water in particular. Three miles below Steubenville is Mingo Junction, where we are the guests of a friend who is superintendent of the iron and steel works here. The population of Mingo is twenty-five hundred. From seven to twelve hundred are employed in the works, according to the exigencies of business.
The tragedy is interwoven with the history of the trans-Alleghany border; and schoolboys have in many lands and tongues recited the pathetic defense of the poor Mingo, who, more sinned against than sinning, was crushed in the inevitable struggle between Page 37 savagery and civilization. " We are high and dry on our willowed island. Above, just out of sight, are moored a brace of steam pile-drivers engaged in strengthening the dam which unites us with Baker's Bottom. To the left lies a broad stretch of gravel strand, beyond which is the narrow water fed by the overflow of the dam; to the right, the broad steamboat channel rolls between us and the Ohio hills, while the far-reaching vista down-stream is a feast of shade and tint, by land and water, with the lights and smoke of New Cumberland and Sloan's Station faintly discernible near the horizon.
Afloat on the Ohio: an historical pilgrimage of a thousand miles in a skiff, from Redstone to Cairo by Reuben Gold Thwaites