Page:The Cambridge History of American Literature, v3.djvu/173

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155
The Orient

literary lights of the United States.[1] Further mention here of either of these brilliant members of the American literary fraternity is unnecessary except perhaps to note Mark Twain's Life on the Mississippi (1883) and his Letter to the California Pioneers (1911), in the second of which he describes his life as a miner. An early literary explorer to the Pacific Coast was Theodore Winthrop,[2] who wrote The Canoe and Saddle, Adventures Among the Northwestern Rivers and Forests; and Isthmiana (1862).

One of our inveterate travellers of the purely literary type was Bayard Taylor.[3] Among the first he went to California and published Eldorado, or Adventures in the Path of Empire (1850). Taylor was a voluminous writer and his works describe many parts of the globe. China was one country that found him an early visitor, from which journey came A Visit to India, China, and Japan in 1853 (1855).

The interesting experiences and reminiscences of one of the most prominent Americans in China during many decades, Dr. William A. P. Martin, first president of the Imperial University, are told in Dr. Martin s book, A Cycle of Cathay (1897), an indispensable work in this field. William Elliot Griffis visited the Orient too, and gave us The Mikado's Empire (1876) and Corea, The Hermit Nation (1882). The road to the East from the West, which Benton so dramatically pointed out, was being followed with enthusiasm. Lafcadio Hearn made Japan his own. His Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan (1894), Leaves from the Diary of an Impressionist (1911), Out of the East (1895), In Ghostly Japan (1899), and others are too well known to require comment. A contribution of much interest to this literature is Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore's Jinrikisha Days in Japan (1891). She declares that "Japan six times revisited is as full of charm and novelty as when I first went ashore from the wreck of the Tokio"

A missionary who wrote Adventures in Patagonia (1880) wrote also Life in Hawaii (1882), both of them "foundation" books. He became identified with everything Hawaiian, and wrote many letters from there to The American Journal of Science and to The Missionary Herald. This indefatigable worker in the missionary realm was the Rev. Titus Coan, whose

  1. See Book III, Chap. VIII.
  2. Ibid., Chap. XI.
  3. Ibid., Chap. X.