Page:A Thousand-Mile Walk To The Gulf.djvu/28

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Introduction

bitterest experiences of his life, combined to send him on the long journey recorded in these pages.

Some autobiographical notes found among his papers furnish interesting additional details about the period between his release from the dark room and his departure for the South. “As soon as I got out into heaven’s light,” he says, “I started on another long excursion, making haste with all my heart to store my mind with the Lord’s beauty, and thus be ready for any fate, light or dark. And it was from this time that my long, continuous wanderings may be said to have fairly commenced. I bade adieu to mechanical inventions, determined to devote the rest of my life to the study of the inventions of God. I first went home to Wisconsin, botanizing by the way, to take leave of my father and mother, brothers and sisters, all of whom were still living near Portage. I also visited the neighbors I had known as a boy, renewed my acquaintance with them after an absence of several years, and bade each a formal

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