Page:Our Sister Republic - Mexico.djvu/490

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CHAPTER XXI.


VERA CRUZ.


MR. SEWARD, worn out by the fatigues of the long journey from Manzanillo to the Gulf Coast, remained resting at Orizaba until Tuesday, January 4th, being for the first time in three months in a position to enjoy a little undisturbed quiet.

During his stay he ascended the famous Sierra de Borregas—or mountains of the Sheep—which overlook the city. The ascent of from eight hundred to one thousand feet perpendicularly, was made on foot, and was accomplished by the ex-premier with, apparently, as little fatigue as was experienced by any of the party.

On Sunday, the 2d of January, the party visited the Indian village of Jalapena, in a deep and romantic gorge or canon in the mountains near the source of the Rio Blanco, the stream on which are situated the Falls of Rincon Grande, described in the last chapter. The inhabitants paid Mr. Seward every possible attention, and the visit, though devoid of startling incident, was a very pleasant one to the party.

On the Monday following, a deputation of the simple Indians came down to Orizaba, to present Mr. Seward with a curiously carved and stained cane, of a peculiar wood growing by the banks of the Blanco. This cane is of a single piece of wood, and the handle represents an eagle's foot with extended talons, very