Page:The Story of Mexico.djvu/262

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work. For several years the cost was much greater than the produce, but the pit grew rich as it became deep, and at last yielded quantities of sulphuretted silver. When Obregon, or, as he came to be called, the Count of Valenciana, began to work the vein, goats were browsing over the hill-tops all about the ravine of San Xavier. Ten years after, on the same spot, the climbing streets of Guanajuato sheltered a large population; and at present it is a flourishing city, surrounded by a region all rich in minerals. The produce from the mine at Valenciana has fallen behind that of other later veins, and scarcely covers the outlay.

Humboldt went from Guanajuato to Valladolid, which had not yet changed its name in honor of the mule-driver, Morelos, who had, however, already begun to study in the Colegio of San Nicholas. Valladolid was a small city of eighteen thousand inhabitants. Humboldt says it contained nothing worthy of notice, but an aqueduct and a bishop's palace. He could not fail to admire the lofty picturesque arches of that aqueduct of warm yellow stone, whose long lines vanish in perspective, shaded by great ash trees. He does full justice to the beauty of Patzcuaro, which he declares would alone have repaid him for his voyage across the ocean. Humboldt spent some time there, and his memory of his visit is still preserved in the name of a lofty hill overlooking the lake, named Humboldt's mountain. The hospitable, courteous citizens of Patzcuaro still point out with pride his favorite points of view. They fully appreciate, as he did, the attractions of their lovely lakes.