The Backwoods of Canada eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 306 pages of information about The Backwoods of Canada.

[Maps:  Charts shewing the Interior Navigation of the District of Newcastle and Upper Canada.]

Just below the waterfall I was mentioning there is a curious natural arch in the limestone rock, which at this place rises to a height of ten or fifteen feet like a wall; it is composed of large plates of grey limestone, lying one upon the other; the arch seems like a rent in the wall, but worn away, and hollowed, possibly, by the action of water rushing through it at some high flood.  Trees grow on the top of this rock.  Hemlock firs and cedars are waving on this elevated spot, above the turbulent waters, and clothing the stone barrier with a sad but never-fading verdure.  Here, too, the wild vine, red creeper, and poison-elder, luxuriate, and wreathe fantastic bowers above the moss-covered masses of the stone.  A sudden turn in this bank brought us to a broad, perfectly flat and smooth bed of the same stone, occupying a space of full fifty feet along the shore.  Between the fissures of this bed I found some rosebushes, and a variety of flowers that had sprung up during the spring and summer, when it was left dry, and free from the action of the water.

This place will shortly be appropriated for the building of a saw and grist-mill, which, I fear, will interfere with its natural beauty.  I dare say, I shall be the only person in the neighbourhood who will regret the erection of so useful and valuable an acquisition to this portion of the township.

The first time you send a parcel or box, do not forget to enclose flower-seeds, and the stones of plums, damsons, bullace, pips of the best kinds of apples, in the orchard and garden, as apples may be raised here from seed, which will bear very good fruit without being grafted; the latter, however, are finer in size and flavour.  I should be grateful for a few nuts from our beautiful old stock-nut trees.  Dear old trees! how many gambels have we had in their branches when I was as light of spirit and as free from care as the squirrels that perched among the topmost boughs above us.—­“Well,” you will say, “the less that sage matrons talk of such wild tricks as climbing nut-trees, the better.”  Fortunately, young ladies are in no temptation here, seeing that nothing but a squirrel or a bear could climb our lofty forest-trees.  Even a sailor must give it up in despair.

I am very desirous of having the seeds of our wild primrose and sweet violet preserved for me; I long to introduce them in our meadows and gardens.  Pray let the cottage-children collect some.

My husband requests a small quantity of lucerne-seed, which he seems inclined to think may be cultivated to advantage.


Variations in the Temperature of the Weather.—­Electrical Phenomenon.—­ Canadian Winter.—­Country deficient in Poetical Associations.—­Sugar-making.  Fishing Season.—­Mode of Fishing.—­Duck-shooting.—­Family of Indians.—­Papouses and their Cradle-cases.—­Indian Manufactures.—­ Frogs.

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The Backwoods of Canada from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.