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island of d'Oura, where it was said cargoes of gold bars and nuggets could be picked up along the beach. Later on the Dutch and English joined in the quest; and in 1621 the French became aware of the importance of the pepper trade. They sent a fleet to Sumatra carrying magnificent presents for the Sultan of Acheen.
In 1793 Capt. Jonathan Carnes sailed in a schooner from Salem, Mass., to the East Indies. While in the harbor of Bencoolen, Sumatra, he heard of the pepper trade, which was at that time confined principally to Padang. Capt. Carnes sailed for Padang without any knowledge of the course, although the route was uncharted and dangerous to navigation. On arriving there he found very little pepper was raised in Padang but that it was brought there by the natives in their proas, from points farther north. He finally succeeded in obtaining a cargo and sailed for Salem. Unfortunately he was wrecked in the West Indies, losing his vessel and cargo. Finding bis way back to Salem he told his employers what he had discovered. They immediately began to secretly construct the brig "Rajah" for the pepper trade.
In 1795 Capt. Carnes sailed in the brig for Sumatra and a cargo of pepper. On this trip Cipt. Carnes visited the northerly ports of the island without charts or guide of any kind, making his way through coral reefs which even today are a dread to navigators. There was great excitement in Salem when Capt. Cames arrived with his cargo of pepper. This lot of pepper cost eighteen thousand dollars, and sold for one hundred and forty-four thousand; a profit of seven hundred per cent.
The place where the cargo was obtained was kept secret for some time. Finally vessels were fitted out in both Salem and Beverly for Bencooien where it was supposed Capt. Carnes learned about the pepper trade. These efforts were fruitless for the European colonists of the pepper ports became extremely jealous. They feared the
rivalry of the Yankees. No charts or sailing directions of the coast north of Padang could be found. All sorts of stories of the dangers of the coast were circulated to frighten the Yankee adventurers; nevertheless by the first of the nineteenth century many American ships sailed to Sumatra for a share of the pepper trade.
Capt. Joseph Ropes in the American ship Recovery finally located Padang in November, 1802, and sailed away from there with a cargo of pepper. Two years later the Putnam sailed from Salem, and also obtained a cargo of the precious spice at Padang. Boom towns sprang up all along the Sumatra coast, bearing such picturesque names as Analaboo, Soo-soo, Tanger and North Tally Pow. It was this same venturesome captain with the Salem ship Recovery that entered the harbor of Mocha, the first American vessel to enter this port. This resulted in the establishment of the American coffee industry.
Salem ships were first to engage in commerce with Hindustan, Java, Japan, Fiji Islands, Madagascar, New Holland and New Zealand. They were among the first to sail the west coast of Africa and South America. A Salem ship was the first to round the Cape of Good Hope, and the first to carry the American flag through the Straits of Magellan. The Salem ship Atlantic, in command of Capt. Elias Hasket Derby Jr., was the first to fly the Stars and Stripes in the harbors of Bombay and Calcutta. The Peggy, another Salem ship brought the first cargo of Bombay cotton to New England. It was the Astrea under Capt. Henry Prince of Salem that began our trade with the Philippines in 1795.
These voyages were not pleasure trips, neither were the captains of these ships adventurers. They were merchants, soldiers and ambassadors. They faced many dangers, from pirates, the ships of hostile nations, treacherous natives, coral reefs and the fierce typhoons of the tropics.
This service developed a splendid type of manhood; and no city in the early days of the nation could boast of prouder names than the Derbys, Crowninsheilds, Forresters, Thorndykes, Peabodys, Pickmans, Wests and Silsbees of Salem. The very nature of these voyages gave a peculiar character to the people. The length of time spent on the oceans by these captains gave them a splendid opportunity to improve their minds. From among the masters, supercargoes, and other officers of these Indiamen, there have been many members of the Massachusetts legislature, three members of Congress, two secretaries of the navy, a United States senator and a great mathematician, second to none in ancient or modern times, one who corrected the works of Newton and enlarged the heavens of La Place.
It was the merchants of Salem, Marblehead and Beverly, who were the first to take out letter of marque and reprisal and formed that fleet of privateers whose services turned the fortunes of war in our favor both in the Revolution and in 1812. The privateersmen of New England won more victories, and captured more prizes in both these wars than the entire fleets of our navy.
In 1798 the citizens of Salem voted to build and equip a thirty-two gun frigate, and present her to the U. S. Navy to suppress the French ravages on our West India trade.
This ship was called the Essex, and she was launched in 1709. After protecting our West Indian trade for several months she was sent to the Barbary Coast, where she took part in the defeat of the pirates that preyed on our commerce. Her name was made illustrious during the war of 1812, when she won a heroic battle from a superior British ship. At that time Midshipman Farragut, who afterwards became Admiral, was a member of the crew.
These incidents prove the value of a merchant marine to the prosperity and security of the nation. A country whose sons are trained in the hard school of the sea; and which has as a nucleus for national defense its own native born sailors, need not fear the ships of any enemy that may attempt to invade its shores.
We must regain our old prestige on the seas; to open to our young men the channels of a trade closed to them for a generation, and in this way develop for national defense that sturdy manhood which comes from those whose life and love are for the sea.
The patriotic citizens of this country, backed by that patriotic organization, The Home Market Club, have been and are now urging upon Congress to adopt a vigorous American policy for the upbuilding of an American Merchant Marine.
The Cave Aan's Wooing
By Eleanor Valentine
M HEARD her voice on the mountain, as I walked the trail, and back again to the cave, now so desolate. Like the evening shades' mantling charm, my heart seemed to darken with the loneliness of the life I had led.
Reluctantly I approached the dwelling I had loved, where I lived in such quiet seclusion. Now, the grey of the cavern chilled me. The shadows of the moonlit trees lengthened into grotesque shapes. Their weirdness enthralled me. My eyes moved along with their slowly shifting forms, the while her voice, dominating every chord of my memory, changed with them, blending within me into shapes of things yet unborn.
I dragged the sheep-skin nearer to the play of light and shadow, that nothing might escape my eager outlook. All night, and into the break of day, I lay in the opening. Sleep would not close my eyes. The same enduring, tender voice, had brought new life. My blood rioted mad.
Oh, woman! I, the rough-clad and scraggly male of human-kind, craved the companionship of a woman. A woman, delicate in tracing and expression, the one, the only one, whose soul is linked unto mine. Even so far apart! Yet must I ever seek you. I must leave the cot in the mountain, and seek afield for my mate. Oh, woman, to denude my Paradise of its peace! The blood of my ancestors, and yours, calls for you, yearns for your presence.
The dawn budded pink o'er the mountain. The dew-kissed grass in freshness allured me. I waded through grassy depths to the woods, for morn's baptism. Within the many
crevices of rock and bank, ferns grew, and as I passed by, I touched one fragile maiden-hair fern, and it quivered its dainty leaves in response to my caress.
I thought how soon the woodland would miss me, and would she care for each beloved woodland flower as I have cared? Then came to me denial. I needed no companion in this wilderness. Morn strengthened me, subdued the night longings, and blotted out the shadows. Dawn's awakening recalled me to mother nature. What mortal soul of man or woman can bring to this place a greater thought of harmony? Nature! I but forsook you, to be more ravished by your charm. Loveliest of all, again am I your adorer, and the worshipper at your shrine.
Lightly and happily, I walked back to my cave, the cavern in the mountain, this my home and shelter. The morning light brightened its grey walls. Even the dew-sprinkled rock ferns freshened their shade, and I loved and revered my home.
The sun-ripened hazelnuts lay beside the woodland path, the burst husks covering the ground, I gathered and ate their rich kernels. The sparkling brook's cool waters quenched my thirst. Oh, man of the city's mold, you might envy my paradise. The rich garnet of May apples, the harmonizing ebon shades of huckle and blackberries, mingling with the deep orange of the mulberry, all such as these, are mine, mine in the sacred precincts of the forest. I am monarch of all this domain, crowned with the laurel leaf, my Court the courting of woodland flowers; a king who in himself has found the inner crown purpling his royal hours.
The sun is warming the paths. The trail to the mountain beckons me. Before the noonday's pulsing heat, I shall have walked to the summit of the mount. It stands, a monument to Time's patience. Indeed, it is nature's great king. I raise my eyes to you in reverence, Oh, king, my homage is justly yours. Ah! Upon your slopes, what splendors do you grace. Your sparkling lake, your forest deep, and my own cavern above your cliffs.
The beasts of the forest have learned their ways, and appreciate their worth. I am not the ruthless male of mankind, destroying for selfish ends the children of the wilderness, nor do I feed upon their flesh. The gentle deer, from dark, velvety eyes, look on me as their protector and friend.
I have been to the mountain top, through depths of russet-brown woodland path, through to the lake, to carry home the water-cress which thrives among the stagnant pools, my salad for my meal at eventide. I found a nesting of wild duck eggs among the rushes, and three became provision for another meal. I could not abuse your trust, Oh, mother-fowl, and left remaining four. Other duck lives, and your little brood amid the myriad colony, will quite suffice to populate the lake's wide edge. I promise to refrain from taking your nest again.
As dusk came over the woodland, I slowly loitered home. The fading light softened the tones of my rock walls. After my meal of abundance, my ravenous appetite stayed, I read, in the fading glow, my books, my Masters, portraying destiny. I am rich in the knowledge of the world, and satisfied with my Masters, but even the student may add to their reasonings, the wisdom bred in his soul, and life has much to teach. Clearness of mind, such as mine, can improve the thought of the world, and on the day it needs me most I shall be ready to point out the truth.
Young and old can appreciate the works of a master soul, which would
but propagate the wisdom gained by truth. Oh, could you worldlings but share my knowledge, but understand the law, God's law, and live as nature meant! How unnecessary that thing called ill-health would be, that destroys what nature lavished upon you.
In the flickering light of the candle's glow, I read far into the night. Book reading quells many desires, I have found, but I am restless tonight. The tramp through the forest has made me energetic, perhaps. I need the solace of sleep, so kind to us mortals.
As I lay on my sheep-skin, I heard the cooing notes of birds. The moonlight fascinated me. Each tree seemed a part of me, and I searched, by the moon's light, to discover the mated birds, who my peace so disturbed, cooing, softly cooing, each tone coaxing me from my rest.
Again her voice, touching memory within! I ever hear her calling me. The maze of thoughts o'erwhelms me. Is she a part of the universal plan? Does she ever seek, in the city, the throbbing heart of the world, as I have sought, in the woodland? I live in the expectation that she has the understanding of my ways.
I carried my mat outside; the cavern is sultry. Outside, the stars gleamed quietly, peacefully down; the vale and the mountain's summit were silver in the moonlight. To fathom the thought-builder, erecting a dream palace unto the skies, to sense the substance of its ground-work, and its texture, I searched within. Will she accept the building of my dreams? Or when I find her, shall the world have sheathed her form in its desires?
Impatiently I sought the woodland glade, drank of the brook, cooling the riot of flaming thoughts and wonderments. At last, I lay beside its edge, listening to its monotone, in the cool damp. The dews gathered over me and soon sleep's cooling draught lulled me, while yet I heard her voice calling, calling, ever so far away.
This morning, I despised my weakness. Night had overwhelmed me. I needed her cover to hide my shame. Oh, woman, so to lead me on! In the freshly beaming morn, I exult, I am free in the woodland, teeming with the ardor of nature.
Yet shall I find you, woman of my thoughts' realm. High have I placed thee, clothed in purity's veil.
I returned to the cave, happy, confident, and in peace. Nature would have mocked me, but now I know the time has come to leave the woodland, and go far from the mountains, into earth's heaving mass of humanity, and for your sake, sweet woman of tender dreams, you who called that night on the mountain, you who still cling to me in thought.
Down the trail leading from the cavern, the hermit steadily wended his way toward the distant city. A tall, slender man, tanned, and with a beard bronzed from the sun's rays. Even the hair that fell in long locks over his neck, was sun-bleached and streaked with gold, nature's markings.
Timidly he approached the city. The noise appalled him. Hesitating, he turned backward to the great highway, but immediately again toward the city's gate. The populace stared at his approach, amazed. Heedless, and with strong step, he walked along their main street, followed by curious crowds, and the careless jests of men, while the women sneeringly gazed at his comeliness, and children hooted and laughed.
Bravely he wended his way down the streets, up narrow alleys, till, with just a few of the most curious followers behind him, near the edge of the town, he spied a house standing alone, seemingly unoccupied. And all weary and dust-stained, he knocked at the door of the house, while the curious watched from without the gate.
A kind-faced woman opened the door and gazed at him, shocked, but pityingly, when, in calm, dignified manner he asked for shelter. Her pity turned to mild surprise as she invited him to enter.
In all sincerity, he told her of his life on the mountain. Out in the world,
somewhere, her own son was a wanderer, perhaps another mother sheltered him. And when this lonely son of some mother, asked the privilege of living in the old barn, she tearfully asked him to make her humble dwelling his home for the time being. He refused, and asked again for the bam. "For I have always lived with nature," he said, and thus again, nature gave her beloved a resting place, and peace even within the city's thrall.
The barn, with honeysuckle vines entwined around it, stood beneath the shade of an old, spreading cherry tree, studded with shining red cherries, while pink and white roses clambered everywhere. And he sat himself upon the grass, and spread before him the forest nuts, and ate in thankful mood, while blessing the kindness of the one soul who sheltered him. As dusk came darkening the day, he silently watched and waited for night. His recollections of the cavern, and his longings to be there, saddened the hours. Away from home, away from the mountain, all his domain stood pictured clearly before him.
As for her, the excitement of the day had abated his insistent thoughts. Not woman, but dark gloom of the cavern, beckoned him for quiet and rest He but wished the seclusion of his rock in the mountain, away from his fellowmen.
Far into the night, he tremblingly waited, afraid to approach the highway. And, even as the hours passed, he hesitated to leave this shelter.
At last, when bravery had conquered his timidity, out through the gate he went into the unknown. Along the pavements, his bare feet softly trod upon the city's walks. Some lone gardens stood forth in the clear moonlight, a touch of their green wildness reminding him of the wood flowers, his garden spot. The sweet odors soothed the tumult in his breast, and promised him his night's rest.
At early morn, he started toward the misty hills. Of a sudden, he heard a voice, coming from a latticed window, singing: