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- Round the World - 1/46 -


ROUND THE WORLD

BY ANDREW CARNEGIE

PREFACE

It seems almost unnecessary to say that "Round the World," like "An American Four-in-Hand in Britain," was originally printed for private circulation. My publishers having asked permission to give it to the public, I have been induced to undertake the slight revision, and to make some additions necessary to fit the original for general circulation, not so much by the favorable reception accorded to the "Four-in-Hand" in England as well as in America, nor even by the flattering words of the critics who have dealt so kindly with it, but chiefly because of many valued letters which entire strangers have been so extremely good as to take the trouble to write to me, and which indeed are still coming almost daily. Some of these are from invalids who thank me for making the days during which they read the book pass more brightly than before. Can any knowledge be sweeter to one than this? These letters are precious to me, and it is their writers who are mainly responsible for this second volume, especially since some who have thus written have asked where it could be obtained and I have no copies to send to them, which it would have given me a rare pleasure to be able to do.

I hope they will like it as they did the other. Some friends consider it better; others prefer the "Four-in-Hand." I think them different. While coaching I was more joyously happy; during the journey round the World I was gaining more knowledge; but if my readers like me half as well in the latter as in the former mood, I shall have only too much cause to subscribe myself with sincere thanks,

Most gratefully,

THE AUTHOR.

"Think on thy friends when thou haply see'st Some rare, noteworthy object in thy travels, Wish them partakers of thy happiness."

ROUND THE WORLD.

NEW YORK, Saturday, October 12, 1878.

Bang! click! the desk closes, the key turns, and good-bye for a year to my wards--that goodly cluster over which I have watched with parental solicitude for many a day; their several cribs full of records and labelled Union Iron Mills, Lucy Furnaces, Keystone Bridge Works, Union Forge, Cokevale Works, and last, but not least, that infant Hercules, the Edgar Thomson Steel Rail Works--good lusty bairns all, and well calculated to survive in The struggle for existence--great things are expected of them in The future, but for the present I bid them farewell; I'm off for a holiday, and the rise and fall of iron and steel "affecteth me not."

Years ago, Vandy, Harry, and I, standing in the very bottom of the crater of Mount Vesuvius, where we had roasted eggs and drank to the success of our next trip, resolved that some day, instead of turning back as we had then to do, we would make a tour round the Ball. My first return to Scotland and journey through Europe was an epoch in my life, I had so early in my days determined to do it; to-day another epoch comes--our tour fulfils another youthful aspiration. There is a sense of supreme satisfaction in carrying out these early dreams which I think nothing else can give, it is such a triumph to realize one's castles in the air. Other dreams remain, which in good time also _must_ come to pass; for nothing can defeat these early inborn hopes, if one lives, and if death comes there is, until the latest day, the exaltation which comes from victory if one but continues true to his guiding star and manfully struggles on.

And now what to take for the long weary hours! for travellers know that sight-seeing is hard work, and that the ocean wave may become monotonous. I cannot carry a whole library with me. Yes, even this can be done; mother's thoughtfulness solves the problem, for she gives me Shakespeare, in thirteen small handy volumes. Come, then, my Shakespeare, you alone of all the mighty past shall be my sole companion. I seek none else; there is no want when you are near, no mood when you are not welcome--a library indeed, and I look forward with great pleasure to many hours' communion with you on lonely seas--a lover might as well sigh for more than his affianced as I for any but you. A twitch of conscience here. You ploughman bard, who are so much to me, are you then forgotten? No, no, Robin, no need of taking you in my trunk; I have you in my heart, from "A man's a man for a that" to "My Nannie's awa'."

* * * * *

PITTSBURGH, Thursday, October 17.

What is this? A telegram! "Belgic sails from San Francisco 24th instead of 28th." Can we make it? Yes, travelling direct and via Omaha, and not seeing Denver as intended. All right! through we go, and here we are at St. Louis Friday morning, and off for Omaha to catch the Saturday morning train for San Francisco. If we miss but one connection we shall reach San Francisco too late. But we sha'n't. Having courted the fickle goddess assiduously, and secured her smiles, we are not going to lose faith in her now, come what may. See if our good fortune doesn't carry us through!

* * * * *

OMAHA, Saturday, October 19.

All aboard for "Frisco!"

A train of three Pullmans, all well filled--but what is this shift made for, at the last moment, when we thought we were off? Another car to be attached, carrying to the Pacific coast Rarus and Sweetzer, the fastest trotter and pacer, respectively, in the world. How we advance! Shades of Flora Temple and "2.40 on the plank road!" That was the cry when first I took to horses--that is, to owning them. At a much earlier age I was stealing a ride on every thing within reach that had four legs and could go. One takes to horseflesh by inheritance. Rarus now goes in 2.13-1/4, and Ten Broeck beats Lexington's best time many seconds. I saw him do it. And so in this fast age, second by second, we gain upon old Father Time. Even since this was written more than another second has been knocked off. America leads the world in trotters, and will probable do so in running horses as well, when we begin to develop them in earnest. Our soft roads are favorable for speed; the English roads would ruin a fast horse.

We traverse all day a vast prairie watered by the Platte. Nothing could be finer: such fields of corn standing ungathered, such herds of cattle grazing at will! It is a superb day, and the russet-brown mantle in which Nature arrays herself in the autumn never showed to better advantage; but in all directions we see the prairies on fire. Farmers burn them over as the easiest mode of getting rid of the rank weeds and undergrowth; but it seems a dangerous practice. They plough a strip twenty to thirty feet in width around their houses, barns, hay-stacks, etc., and depend upon the flames not overleaping this barrier.

Third night out, and we are less fatigued than at the beginning. The first night upon a sleeping-car is the most fatiguing. Each successive one is less wearisome, and ere the fifth or sixth comes you really rest well. So much for custom!

* * * * *

SUNDAY, October 20.

All day long we have been passing through the grazing plains of Nebraska. Endless herds of cattle untrammelled by fences; the landscape a brown sea as far as the eye can reach; a rude hut now and then for a shelter to the shepherds. No wonder we export beef, for it is fed here for nothing. Horses and cattle thrive on the rich grasses as if fed on oats; no flies, no mosquitoes, nothing to disturb or annoy, while the pellucid streams which run through the ranches furnish the best of water. There can be no question that our export trade is still in its infancy. The business is now fully organized, and is subject to well-known rules. At Sherman we saw the large show-bills of the Wyoming County Cattle Raisers' Association, offering heavy rewards for offenders against these rules, and the Cheyenne _Herald_ is filled with advertisements of the various "marks" adopted by different owners. Large profits have been made in the trade--the best assurance that it will grow--but from all I can gather it seems doubtful whether the experiment of exporting cattle alive will succeed.

We saw numerous herds of antelope to-day, but they graze among the cattle, and are altogether too finely civilized to meet our idea of "chasing the antelope over the plain;" one might as well chase a sheep. As night approaches we get higher and higher up the far-famed Rocky Mountains, and before dark reach the most elevated point, at Sherman, eight thousand feet above tide. But our preconceived notions of the Rocky Mountains, derived from pictures of Fremont _ la_ Napoleon crossing the Alps, have received a rude shock; we only climb high plains--not a tree, nor a peak, nor a ravine; when at the top we are but on level ground--a brown prairie, "only this, and nothing more."

* * * * *

TUESDAY, October 22.

Desolation! In the great desert! It extends southward to Mexico and northward to British Columbia, and is five hundred miles in width. Rivers traverse it only to lose themselves in its sands, there being no known outlet for the waters of this vast basin. What caverns must exist below capable of receiving them! and whither do they finally go?


Round the World - 1/46

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