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life in March, April, and May, 1860. They
remained in the reception pond as parr till the
spring of the present year, when about one-half
of them, having assumed the silvery dress of the
smolt, they were permitted to proceed into the
river that they might reach the sea. The runlet
communicating with the river Tay was called
into requisition, the sluices were opened, and
the fish allowed to depart. The other half of
the batch, although put in the boxes and coming
to life at the same period, were still in the parr
state, and certain to remain so for another year,
at which date their brothers and sisters will be
found in the river as grilses of comely appearance,
and from six to seven pounds in weight!

More than a million of pond-bred fish have now
been sent into the river at Stormontfield; it
is satisfactory to think with so favourable a
result, in a monetary point of view, as to
enhance the annual rental of the river by the handsome
sum of ten per cent. Proprietors of other
salmon rivers should take a lesson from what
has been done in this instance.


THE long vacation served for an excuse; but,
indeed, I might have given myself a holiday,
even during the busiest portion of the legal
year, without detriment to my professional
prospects. I was not precisely a briefless
barrister, having made exactly nineteen guineas and
a half (the half-guinea being due to a " motion
of course") during the past twelvemonth. But
I did not depend on the patronage of attorneys
for my bread; my great-aunt's legacy gave me
a modest independence, and I felt an anxious
wish to visit America and see my brother once
more. There were but two of us left out of a
rather large family. I had been bred to the bar,
at home, but William had chosen to push his
fortunes in the New World. He had hitherto
chased the fickle goddess so hotly, that the
letters of his relatives rarely reached him, and that
his were seldom dated twice over from the same
town, or even from the same state. He had
adopted the restless habits of the most migratory
Yankee, whisking from Florida to Maine,
speculating, mining, prospecting, land-jobbing, entering
professions to abandon them half tried, and
leading that Jack-of-all-trades life so dear to
our Transatlantic cousins. Yet Willy made
money: he never complained, never asked
assistance from his few surviving kinsfolk, and his
elastic spirit swam like a cork in all waters of
difficulty. When last I heard of him he was
junior partner in a new bank at New Orleans;
he had done well enough, and gave me a pressing
invitation to visit him in the healthy season.
He was housed in Rochambeau-street, and could
introduce me, he said, to all the celebrities of a
city compared with which even Paris is tame
and common-place. Autumn came, and I went.
I had written twice since I had made up
my mind to the voyage, but had received no
reply. This, however, disturbed me little. I
made no doubt that I should find my brother in
the bank parlour, safely anchored before his
ledgers and cash-books. " Banking," said I to
myself, "is a steady and a permanent pursuit,
and I am glad that Willy has taken to so sober
a mode of realising a fortune. This is very
different from his Californian land-jobbing, or his
Texan mule trade, or his Oregon life assurance
company. He will do well now, and I shall
find him at his post." I set off. I travelled by
rail and steam, without the slightest adventure,
to a certain well-known port on the Mississippi,
where I embarked. The river-boat I selected
was a fine one, the Benjamin Franklin; she had
been launched but a month before, and her
superb cabins retained their maiden splendour of
decoration. What pretty cabins they were,
lavishly adorned with mirrors, alabaster statues,
costly woods, gilding, and rich carpets and
curtains, a world too fine for the rough majority of
the company. There were some well-bred, quiet
people on board, certainly, but they formed a
small minority, and seemed to shrink from
notice. The bulk of the passengers were
excessively wild and noisy, with beards and hair
tangled and luxuriant, and dressed in garments
of incongruous fashion, half dandy, half

"Surely, steward," I ventured to say, " these
cannot be all Southern planters. Are they
filibusters, or——"

"No, no, massa," grinned the black, very
affably; "dem not Southern gentlemen, sure,
nor yet Yankee notionsellers, nouther. Massa
must have heard ob de great diggins at Pike's
Peak, hey?"

"Pike's Peak!" repeated I, rallying my
wandering recollections.

"Iss, sir, up 'mong de ole Rocky Mountains.
Dere dem passengers are all going off as fast as
can hurry. Pike's Peak shocking savage place,
massa, not fit for Chris'enoh dear no!"

I had heard of Pike's Peak, the reports of its
immense wealth, varied by hideous tales of
starvation, suffering, death, and cannibalism,
among the emigrants thither.

"But those gentlemen," said I, glancing
towards a group of four well-dressed, well-
behaved men, " can hardly be going to Pike's

"Which, massa?" said the affable negro.
"Ah! I see; dem wid de lily-white hands and
de smart cravat round him throat, and de shirt-
cuff so clean and stiff, and all de bootiful rings
and watch-guards. Certainly not, sir; dem
never go grubbing wid pick and cradle. Dey too
clebber, sure."

"Those, then, are planters?" said I, with
some interest.

"Cornelius, ye darned snowball, get me a
julep!" bawled a fierce adventurer from among
the diggers.

"Coming, sir!" answered the steward, swishing
his napkin, and then answered my query
with, " He! he! he! Massa make comical
mistake. Dem are sportsmen."

"But howwhy?" I began, when the
impatient digger assured the black that he would