Richmond (VA) Dispatch, "The Northern Springs," June 20, 1854

    Source citation
    "The Northern Springs," Richmond (VA) Dispatch, June 20, 1854, p. 2: 1.
    Newspaper: Publication
    Richmond Daily Dispatch
    Newspaper: Headline
    The Northern Springs
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    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Zak Rosenberg, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print.  Spelling and other typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.


    The Saratoga Daily Sentinel says the number of arrivals there amount to eight hundred or a thousand a day.

    Visitors from the South, says the Journal of Commerce, are already arriving at Saratoga Springs. A party of South Carolina are booked at the "United States."

    Of course! And no doubt a party from Alabama will follow them: then a party from Mississippi, then a party from Virginia, and so on till there is a general representation from the Southern States in the Northern watering places. The truth is, the Northern people know very well what they are about. The nearer a man lives to the North Pole, the sharper and clearer his intellectual faculties become. He has to keep every faculty wide awake all the time, in order to avoid starving and freezing to death. The consequence is, that in all his dealings with the abolitionists of more genial climes, he outwits and overreaches them, soft-sauders and swallows them like unto a snake lubricating and swallowing his prey. thus, in the matter of Northern schools, manufactures, &c., the easy and credulous Southren has been made to believe that he must go to the North for a first-rate article, and, being indoctrinated in this idea to the hub, and made to feel unalterably certain of his own inferiority, the abolitionists may abuse him and steal his negroes till the crack of doom, and he will send his money after his negroes, with a loyal heart and liberal hand. there seems to be a general pointing to the Northern magnetic power in that region, which draws all the precious metals thither, and attracts masters and servants with equal potency. The negro goes by the underground railroad, and the master by the above ground, but they both have the same destination. Both are lionized, the master for his cash and the man for his color, and a good time they have of it, each so long as the money holds out with one, and no new runaway shares the laurels of the other.

    We cannot but admire the consistency of the Southern patrons of the North-goaded and chaged by the insufferable and everlasting piracies upon their property and outrages upon their feelings, they pass the most thundering resolutions; curse the whole tribe of Yankees from the first Yankee-doodle father down to the youngest of the codfishes of Massachusetts; denounce them as politically, morally and socially corrupt to the core, and, as soon as they can recover their breath, order their trunks packed up for a long visit to these pleasant, excellent, and virtuous people. They of course meet a polite and gracious reception. They cast about their money with a lavish and lordly hand, and it falls into the pockets of men who, if not of a chivalrous, are of a highly practical turn. Behind Southerner's back, these men congratulate themselves upon the supposed tendency of the tropics to soften the human brain, and produce a certain degree of greenness in the eyes. In his presence, they are quite courteous, so that by the time he turns Southward, he leaves both his prejudices and his purse behind him.

    Such is the mighty power of Fashion. It is the fashion to go to the North. Is it necessary to health, to morals, to social enjoyment? If people want salt air and bathing is there no sea coast in the South? If they desire medicinal springs, are these confined to Northern States? Why, of all the medicinal waters in this continent, there is none surpassing those of the South. There is scarcely a country in Western Virginia which has not its mineral spring, and some of them, not to be approached, not to be named in the same day, by the grand humbug of Saratoga. Let every man who has never visited the Virginia water places, read the account in Dr. Moorman's work on "The Virginia Springs," lately published by Randolph of the White Sulphur, Salt Sulphur, Red Sulphur, Blue Sulphur, Sweet, Red Sweet, Hot, Warm, Healing Alum, to say nothing of scores of othre Springs in Virginia, which possess real medicinal qualities for almost "all the ills that flesh is heir to."

    New York has no such magnificent mountain scenery as that in which most of these life-giving waters are nestled. These glorious mountains, with their cool, bracing breezes, are enough of themselves to attract the heated dweller of the plains, while to the traveller, who loves the sublime and wonderful, the Hawk's Nest, Weyer's Cave, the Natural Bridge, the Ice Mountain, the Peaks of Otter, and a dozen other wonders of Nature here in Virginia alone, which might be mentioned, will more than repay a long journey. We can easily understand why Northern men should visit Southern watering places, which, however, they rarely do; but it is a subject of the most unmixed astonishment and humiliation that Southerners should pass by their glorious mountain springs and breezes of their own South for the hot and crowded saloons, and the heartless and corrupt society of a Northern watering place. But, as we have already said, great is Fashion and might is Humbug.-We shall begin to have some hope of the South when her people exhibit Spartan self-denial as well as Spartan courage. In the language of a historian of the American revolution: "A people that have so much public virtue as to become unfashionable for the sake of preserving their political rights, and can restrain their appetites and passions for the sake of their country, are not easily to be enslaved."

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