A Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 208 pages of information about A Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America.
call louder and louder on the Lord, until he came upon them; whilst their attachees, with turned-up eyes and smiling countenances, were chanting hymns and shaking hands with the multitude.  Some would now and then give a hearty laugh, which is an indication of superior grace, and is called “the holy laugh.”  The scene altogether was highly entertaining—­penitents, parsons, caps, combs, and straw, jumbled in one heterogeneous mass, lay heaving on the ground, and formed at this juncture a grouping that might be done justice to by the pencil of Hogarth, or the pen of the author of Hudibras; but of which I fear an inferior pen or pencil must fail in conveying an adequate idea.

The women were at length carried off, fainting, by their friends, and the preachers began to prepare for another scene.  From the time of those faintings, the “new birth” is dated, which means a spiritual resurrection or revival.

The scene that followed appeared to be a representation of “the Last Supper.”  The preachers assembled round a table, and acted as disciples, whilst one of them, the leader, presided.  The bread was consecrated, divided and eaten—­the wine served much after the same manner.  The faithful, brothers and sisters, were now called upon to partake of the Sacrament—­proper warning, however, being given to the gentlemen, that when the wine was handed to them, they were not to take a drink, as that was quite unnecessary, as a small sup would answer every purpose.  One gentleman seemed to have forgotten this hint, and attempted to take rather more than a sup; but he was prevented by the administering preacher snatching the goblet from him with both hands.  Many said they were obliged to substitute brandy and water for wine; but for this fact I cannot vouch.  Another straw-tumbling scene now began; and, as if by way of variety, the inmates of five or six tents got up similar scenes among themselves.  The preachers left the field to join the tenters; and, if possible, surpassed their previous exhibitions.  The women were occasionally making confessions, pro bono publico, when sundry “backslidings” were acknowledged for the edification of the multitude.  We left the camp about two o’clock in the morning, when these poor fanatics were still in full cry.

At Hell Town, near this place, there was an officer’s muster held about this time.  Every citizen exercising the elective franchise is also eligible to serve in the militia.  There are two general musters held every year in each county, and several company meetings.  Previous to the general muster there is an officer’s muster, when the captains and subalterns are put through their exercise by the field officers.  At this muster, which I attended, the superior officers in command certainly appeared to be sufficiently conversant with tactics, and explained the rationale of each movement in a clear and concise manner; but the captains and subalterns went through their exercise somewhat

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A Ramble of Six Thousand Miles through the United States of America from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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