Leaving his family behind him, he started for New Orleans on a flatboat. He tarried long at Natchez, and did not reach the Crescent City till midwinter. Again he found himself destitute of means, and compelled to resort to portrait painting. He went on with his bird collecting and bird painting; in the meantime penetrating the swamps and bayous around the city.
At this time he seems to have heard of the publication of Wilson's " Ornithology," and tried in vain to get sight of a copy of it.
In the spring he made an attempt to get an appointment as draughtsman and naturalist to a government expedition that was to leave the next year to survey the new territory ceded to the United States by Spain. He wrote to President Monroe upon the subject, but the appointment never came to him. In March he called upon Vanderlyn, the historical painter, and took with him a portfolio