Page:Journal of an Expedition 1794.djvu/10

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6
CAPTAIN FORD'S JOURNAL.

Here I experienced the attention of many of the inhabitants, by their kind offers of assistance; but in particular, my friend Jesse Potts happened to be in town, who immediately came to see me, sent for his sulkey, and took me to his nephew's, Mr. Thomas Potts, who had come to meet me. Here I found the most polite hospitality and sympathy I could wish, from an amiable woman, Mrs. Potts, and Miss Potts, a sister of my friend, Mr. Jesse Potts. Here I spent the night, and had every possible attention from all the family. Several of the Messrs. Potts and Rutter called to see me, and pressed me to stay the next day; and all have very cordially invited me to spend some time with them on my return, which I have promised to do. The Messrs. Potts are all largely concerned in extensive iron works of every kind, and some on new and improved constructions. My friend Doct. Anderson, who has joined our squadron as surgeon, was so good as to stay with me at Mr. Potts', and is, as well as myself, well pleased with the politeness and hospitality of the people.

I have as yet not made any observations as to the country. It is very much of a sameness, from the hills above Trenton ferry to this place, and what I call a very fine country, but not as highly improved as I had expected from the representations of the Pennsylvania farmers. I could not help observing the small quantities of meadow, and the few good streams we passed, and we did not see many fine clover fields. Another observation which was made by all the troops, was, that we found no good hay between Trenton and Potts Grove. The quality of the grass had generally been good, but in curing it had all been spoiled, and was so very musty as to give all our horses a cough.

At Potts Grove we found the people very generally our friends, and federal, but heard a bad account of the adjacent country.

21st. The troops marched for Reading. Dr. Anderson and myself staid behind until 11 o'clock, when by the assistance of Mr. Potts, who sent me his sulky, we proceeded for Reading, through a country more mountainous and rough than what we had before passed. Road not very good, yet the lands appeared in good culture, and the farmers happy. On our whole march in Pennsylvania, I find the country by no means as thickly settled as New Jersey; the buildings are generally of stone, and the barns and outhouses very good. We arrived at Reading about 2 o'clock. This is a town pleasantly situated on the banks of the Schuylkill. On the back, about N. E., are high hills and mountains, at the foot of which the town stands; to the S. E., S. and S. W., is a beautiful valley of 3 or 4 miles, when hills and mountains again begin to rise. This is the county-town of Berks; consists of about 400 houses, 3 churches, (one very elegant,) a court house, goal, building for public papers, &c. The houses in general illy built, the taverns but indifferent, particularly as to cooking, which is very bad. This town is mostly inhabited by Germans; as is also the whole country.