Page:Our Sister Republic - Mexico.djvu/12

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8
PREFATORY.

Seeing much to praise, something to blame, and much to excuse as the inevitable result of the acts of those who administered the Government and shaped the destinies of Mexico before the present generation came upon the field of action, I can safely say that the balance was decidedly on the right side and that I came away with more respect for the people, more sympathy for a nationality struggling—sometimes blindly, but always earnestly and persistently—along the path of progress, and more hope for the future of that much misunderstood and much misrepresented Republic, than I had when I entered it.

The journey was one of the most pleasing episodes of my life, and the memory of the friendships established, and the unceasing kindness and consideration received at the hands of Mr. Seward and the other members of his party, and the people of the country through which we traveled, will be a source of heartfelt enjoyment through all coming years.

I have not aimed at writing, a comprehensive, statistical, and historical work on Mexico, but have left that task to other and abler pens, giving only what came under our personal observation, and endeavoring to show the reader, the country and the people as we saw them.

In a land where nature has lavished all her wealth with tropical prodigality, where the scenery is grand and beautiful beyond description, and every step is over historic ground, and amid scenes around which the romance of centuries has accumulated, I could not fail to see much to interest the reader and make the story of such a journey worthy of perusal, whatever my abilities as a writer might be.

The relations between Mexico and the United States must become more intimate as years elapse. The interests of the two Republics are growing, every day, more nearly identical. Nature and republican institutions have made us allies, and an injury inflicted upon one must be felt by the other, as well, in the end. If what I have written shall assist my countrymen in forming a more just and favorable idea of Mexico than they have hitherto entertained, I shall have every reason to be more than satisfied with the result of my labors.