Page:A Topographical Description of the State of Ohio, Indiana Territory, and Louisiana.djvu/19

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Wheeling and Grave Creek they abound with coals, and generally of a good quality.

In many of these hills are quarries of excellent free stone, capable of a good polish, and make beautiful walls in buildings. Some of these stones, when first taken out of the ground, are so soft that they can be worked into various forms with carpenter's tools. On the side of a hill above Steubenville, it is said, there is a spot of ground, that when covered with a considerable depth of snow, a smoke is seen to rise from it, as if it were heated by a subterranean fire. And that near the base of the same hill, if an hot sun succeeds a shower of rain, an excellent white, fine salt may be collected from the surface of the rocks. Not far from Georgetown, 38 miles below Pittsburgh, it is said, a gold mine has lately been discovered. A specimen, it is reported, has been tried by a silver-smith at Pittsburgh, who declared it to be pure gold, without alloy. The lump had the appearance of being found in running water.

The base of some of the hills extends to the bank of the river, others recede leaving wide bottoms of a very rich and deep soil. When the hills approach the river on one side, they usually recede from it, on the other, so that there are wide bottoms, alternately, on both sides the river. Much of the soil in these bottoms, especially the first, (for there are two and three bottoms rising one above the other, form-