From the New York Ladies' Chronicle.
The progress of knowledge, science, and art, in this country, within the last
century, is most cheering. At the commencement of the century, we numbered five
million of inhabitants.:-now, our population exceeds eleven millions.
During the last fifty years what has not been done! The West has cleared the
navigations of its mighty streams, and opened roads through its vast forests.
The South has been equally zealous in production and augmenting the prices of
its great staples. The North has been steadily moving on in untiring zeal, in
extending the manufacturing and commercial interests.- In regard to the whole
country a new era has arisen. The arts, the sciences, manufactures, commerce,
and agriculture, so eminently the pursuits of peace, engage society with a degree
of enterprize, and an intenseness of application, hitherto unknown. We tread
on a broad theatre- new objects are opening, and new resources are developed
on every side. "Science has triumphed over matter. Fire impels the vessel
along the hostile element. The aeronaut soars above the eagle in the thin expanse,
and the firm metals torn from the bowels of the earth, fumes into gas at the
touch of the chemist and wing him on his way. The triple ray of the sun has
been unravelled. We ascend in contemplation on his beams, and bathe in the central
flood of light and life. And we have weighed in the balance the orbs which circle
on the dark verge of our universe. Bounds however have been prescribed to us,
and we must not sorrow, if we who are placed a little below the angels, are
not allowed to pass them. There is a truer philosophy from which we learn that
our present state of being is not the existence, in which we are to advance
in an unchecked career of excellence."
Proud, happy, thrice happy in America! "the home of the oppressed- the
asylum of the emigrant- where the citizen of every clime, and the child of every
creed, roams free and untramelled as the wild winds of heaven- baptized at the
font of liberty in fire and blood- cold must be the heart that thrills not at
the mention of thy name."! Search creation around, my countrymen, and where
do you find a land that presents such a glorious scene for contemplation! Look
at our institutions- our seminaries- our agricultural and commercial interests-
and above all, and more than all, look at the gigantic strides we are making
in all that ennobles human kind! "When the old world with its 'pride, pomp,
and circumstance.' shall be covered with the mantle of oblivion- when thrones
shall have crumbled, and dynasties shall have been forgotten- then will our
happy America stand amid regal ruin, and national desolation, towering sublime
like the last mountain in the deluge; majestic, immutable, and magnificent,
in the midst of blight, ruin, and decay- the last remnant of earth's beauty-
the last resting place of liberty and the light of heaven!"