The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 320 pages of information about The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth.

“Smooth, in humble solicitude for the reader’s feelings, begs he will join him again while proceeding on his course.  Proceeding at a rapid rate we had well nigh lost sight of the El Dorado, when John made a significant motion, which, being translated, meant that he would like to take another glass of hot punch.  To this proposition I readily consented; after which we lighted two real Havanas, and rolled on as resolute as a flying Dutchman.  It was with some effort that John curbed his natural feelings.  The punch, being placed in the right place, seemed to create new thoughts.  ‘Queer fellows you are!’ says he, to talk of freedom and equal rights.  ’Why, you have got a human property market open, and more than three millions of souls up for a bid.  Mark my word, Mr. Smooth, the voice of sorrow for your human commerce will yet shake the stability of your country.  When slavery drives this country to sectional issues; when it corrupts the federal power; when it serves the ambition of those who would drag us into foreign broils; when patriotic men, North and South, ceased to come forward for the safety of a confederation, then will sectionalism wage its angry wars against a noble edifice, whose foundation history tells us must totter under the siege of strife.’



“Day dawned through the gray mist of the East, as crowding the old institution, we sailed swiftly through the air, over the calm Pacific.  Soon San Francisco seemed but a speck in the dim distance.  On, on, on, we sped, until the land passed far out of sight behind.  Our next business was to hang in suspense our hopes, and await the welcome sight of land ahead.  John strained his eyes, and I did the same.  Two hours passed, and the welcome moment arrived.  ‘I see it!’ exclaimed John—­’Land oh!  Land oh!’ In a frenzy of joy he had well-nigh upset the barge and spilled us out.  Then he pointed his finger to an object in the distance that seemed like a lonely steeple holding watch over midnight.

“‘I see it!’ I rejoined—­’it’s land—­a new discovery:  I’ll call it Uncle Sam’s Land.’

“‘A little more moderate, if you please, Mr. Smooth,’ retorted John, very politely.  ’Seeing it first, I claim the right of calling it Prince Albert’s Island.’  John was inclined to exchange any amount of diplomatic notes, but I inquired, in a plain sort of way, what would be the good it could confer on his country? to which he folded his arms, and replied curtly, that having it was the thing sought for by his government.  He might institute the Established Church on it, and create any amount of Bishops, with good fat salaries—­a thing all-desirable in the eyes of the Saviour.  We use these out-of-the-way places,’ he continued, ’as a means of relief to our over-crowded population and pensioners.  We are heavy of pensioners, while our governors are prone to create dependencies, which they do in consideration of the very large stock of gentlemen always on hand, and most clamorous to be provided for at John’s expense.’

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The Adventures of My Cousin Smooth from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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