Travels in North America: With Geological Observations on the United States, Canada, and Nova Scotia, Volume 1

J. Murray, 1845 - 332 pagina's

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Pagina 263 - Munificent bequests and donations for public purposes, whether charitable or educational, form a striking feature in the modern history of the United States, and especially of New England. Not only is it common for rich capitalists to leave by will a portion of then* fortune towards the endowment of national institutions, but individuals during their lifetime make magnificent grants of money for the same objects.
Pagina 143 - It is one enormous quagmire, soft and muddy, except where the surface is rendered partially firm by a covering of vegetables and their matted roots ; yet, strange to say, instead of being lower than the level of the surrounding country, it is actually higher than nearly all the firm and dry land which encompasses it, and, to make the anomaly complete, in'spite of its semi-fluid character, it is higher in the interior than towards its margin.
Pagina 184 - He (a planter) replied, that he himself was a lawyer by profession, and that no legal validity ever had been, or ought to be given, to the marriage tie, so long as the right of sale could separate parent and child, husband and wife. Such separations, he said, could not always be prevented, when slaves multiplied fast, though they were avoided by the masters as far as possible. He defended the custom of bringing up the children of the same estate in common, as it was far more humane not to cherish...
Pagina 143 - THERE are many swamps, or morasses, in this low, flat region, and one of the largest of these occurs between the towns of Norfolk and Weldon. We traversed several miles of its northern extremity on the railway, which is supported on piles. It bears the appropriate and very expressive name of the "Great Dismal," and is no less than forty miles in length from north to south, and twenty-five miles in its greatest width from east to west, the northern half being situated in Virginia, the southern in...
Pagina 148 - ... that if the waters are lowered several feet, it makes no alteration in the breadth of the lake. Much timber has been cut down and carried out from the swamp by means of canals, which are perfectly straight for long distances, with the trees on each side arching over, and almost joining their branches across, so that they throw a dark shade on the water, which of itself looks black, being coloured as before mentioned. When the boats emerge from the gloom of these avenues into the lake, the scene...
Pagina 169 - The owner of the property kindly lent me his black servant as a guide, and I found him provided with a passport, without which no slave can go out after dusk. The exact streets through which he was to pass in his way to me were prescribed, and had he strayed from this route he might have been committed to the guard-house. These and other precautionary regulations, equally irksome to the slaves and their masters, are said to have become necessary after an insurrection brought on by abolitionist missionaries,...
Pagina 147 - Here, however, there is. an extensive lake of an oval form, seven miles long and more than five wide, the depth, where greatest, fifteen feet; and its bottom consisting of mud like the swamp, but sometimes with a pure white sand, a foot deep, covering the mud. The water is transparent, though tinged of a pale brown colour, like that of our peat-mosses, and contains abundance of fish.
Pagina 90 - Appalachian coal field, there is an intimate connection between the extent to which the coal has parted with its gaseous contents, and the amount of disturbance which the strata have undergone. The coincidence of these phenomena may be attributed partly to the greater facility afforded for the escape of volatile matter...
Pagina 148 - ... a low level region bordering the sea, and capable of spreading itself indefinitely over the adjacent country, helps us greatly to conceive the manner in which the coal of the ancient Carboniferous rocks may have been formed. The heat, perhaps, may not have been excessive when the...
Pagina 19 - York after this time, that he " became convinced that we must turn to the New World if we wish to see in perfection the oldest monuments of the earth's history so far at least as relates to its earliest inhabitants. Certainly in no other country are these ancient strata developed on a grander scale or more plentifully charged with fossils; and as they are nearly horizontal, the order of their relative position is always clear and unequivocal.

Over de auteur (1845)

Lyell was born in Kinnordy, Scotland. His father was a naturalist, and Lyell grew up surrounded by books on natural history, geology, and other sciences. He entered Oxford University at the age of 19 after a boarding-school education that was periodically interrupted by poor health. There his interest in geology was heightened. Although he studied law, he gave up legal work to study rocks and fossils. His contribution to geology is twofold. First, he showed that the earth is constantly changing, not by a series of worldwide catastrophes followed by new creations, but by slow, gradual processes. Like James Hutton, he believed and taught that present-day processes were the ones that shaped the past. It was the worldwide publication of Lyell's treatises and texts that led to the general acceptance of the principle of uniformitarianism, first put forth by Hutton. Second, Lyell contributed the principle of faunal succession and the notion of the time sequence of events. These were evidenced from spatial relationships among strata, faults, and intrusions. The data on which Lyell's contributions are based were gathered on numerous field excursions, most notably in southern Europe, the United States, and Canada. During these trips, Lyell collected numerous samples that he and his wife meticulously categorized and labeled. His writings show that he was also interested in, and concerned about, human problems, as well as problems of science. He touches upon social reforms in England and the problems of slavery in the United States. Lyell was a prolific writer, summarizing his thoughts, contributions, and achievements in these major works: "Principles of Geology" (1830, 1831, 1833), "Antiquity of Man," and "Travels in America." His health and strength declined after the death of his wife in 1873, and he died two years later. He was buried in Westminster Abbey.

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