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Notebook No.123, 3 October 1845 - 10 October 1845

 Item — Box: Lyell-temp-box 5
Identifier: Coll-203/A1/123

Scope and Contents

This notebook contains a record of Charles Lyell’s visit to the United States of America (started in notebook, Number 121), continuing his travels throughout parts of New England, including New Hampshire and Vermont. The notes are comprised of discussions about politics and religion, supplemented by commentary about social life, in New England and the United States more broadly, and field notes and observations, including some sketches, of the natural history of the visited regions. Notes are in ink and pencil. The index is located in the back of the notebook on pages 111, 113-115, plus two unnumbered pages at the end. p

Scope and Contents

Content warning: Lyell uses his Scientific Notebooks to gather evidence, based on both his own observation, by reviewing other people's works, by correspondence, asking questions and analyses. The language used in this index is historical, can be discriminatory and may cause offence.

The following table of contents is Lyell's own words, copied from Lyell's own "Index", found at the end of the notebook, transcribed from digital surrogates using the platform Transkribus. When known, Lyell's abbreviations and contractions have been expanded using brackets [ ]. Abbreviations in standard use, such as two letter abbreviations for United States place names, have not been expanded. When writing is unclear, and transcription is not possible, this is denoted using [...]. Quotation marks are Lyell's own notation for ditto, as is the abbreviation "do". The inclusion of [sic] indicates the misspelling of a word is deliberate and taken from the notebook. There are numerous margin notations in this index. X is used to mark a pencil cross made at certain entries. It is not clear if this notation is written contemporaneously or later. A few crosses are accompanied with a ‘?’. At times Lyell has included dates (inner left margin) and these have been inserted at the beginning of the appropriate section.

Lyell's own index

p. 1 Oct. 3rd 1845. Wedding tour by stage
p. 1 X The notch, cascades
p. 1 Daniel Webster’s speech
p. 1 Sects in New Engl[and]. will influence old Engl[and].
p. 1, 3 X Portrait of D. Webster – Diogenes.
p. 3 X Rich covet office in vain – Crawford
p. 3 X Members of Legislature paid.
p. 5 X List of plants, Lycopods etc.
p. 6 X Notch House House martin
p. 6 Pay of members of N[ew]. Hants [abbreviation of Hampshire] Legislature
[p. 6] X Grey birch tree
p. 7 & 9 Members must be resident or vacate [Note: p. 7 is blank, the note is on p. 6.]
p. 7 W. India Emancip[ation]. 1834-38. [Note: p. 7 is blank, the note is on p. 8.]
p. 7 X Pres[ident] Jackson on combinations
p. 8 X - [Pres[ident] Jackson] on monied influence [discussion is on p. 8.]
p. 9 X Snow at Notch House Sept. 10th.
p. 9 Pigs in streets of N.Y. for Irish votes
p. 9 X List of plants Fabian’s [sic Fabyan’s]
p. 10 ?X Universal suffrage, its established force.
p. 11 Whigs cannot remain without ever sharing office
p. 13 With W. Oakes party spirit
p. 13 X Men not measures in U.S.
p. 13 X Discipline of democrats
p. 14 Cleavage of granite at Falls
p. 15 Major Downing : carpenter Memb[er]. of Legisl[ature]
[p. 15] Payment of members good
p. 15 Democracy – fewer reforms wanted in U.S.
p. 15 & 17 Riches gained & inherited
p. 16 Lichen centrifuga – fairy rings –
p. 17 X Everett & D. Webster (with Oakes)
p. 17 Clerical infidelity
Oct. 3 [‘Oct. 3’ deleted or smudged
] p. 18 Methodists, night meetings
p. 18 Orthodox defined.
[p. 18] Moses & Geology Hitchcock & Silliman
p. 19 Progress of religion in N[ew]. Engl[and]-
p. 19 Romanism checked in U.S.
p. 20 X Linnœa [Linnoea], plant?, lichen barbatum [barbata?]
p. 20 X Hemlock Linnœa [Linnoea] & Magnolia together
p. 21 X White Pine Weymouth pine – much burnt
p. 21 X White mountains, Spruce – Bigelo [sic Bigelow]
p. 21 X - [White mountains] plants on summit of
[p. 21] X - [White mountains] more artic than Scotland.
p. 22 X Birds, woodpecker.
p. 22 X Trees Pines Usnea barbata
p. 22 Osar - Fabyans
p. 23 X How the South governs
p. 23 No direct bribes
p. 23 X Slavery has caused ultra-democracy
p. 24 Slave breeding & slave [? conserving] states
p. 24 Slaves must be miserable
p. 26 The smallest northern states c[ould] beat the South
p. 26 Mount Deception, boulders wasting
p. 28 Helix thyoides W[hite]. Mount[ains].
p. 28 X Granite veins –
p. 29 New York Popul[ation]. 5th city of world
p. 29 X Millerites Fanaticism of, cause of
p. 29 X Crops left unharvested.
p. 30 X Last day of Millerites Oct. 23rd. 1844
p. 30 Andover Seminary. German theology
p. 30 Congregational Excommunic[ation].
p. 31 Unitarians
p. 31 X Democracy of Slave - holders -
p. 31 X How the South governs the north
p. 32 X Bribery by places
p. 32 X Extirpat[ion] of beaver & bear
p. 32 X Trees M[ount]. Washington
p. 33 X Plants castra- castrensis [sic crista-castrensis]
p. 34 X Peculiarities of line of fir on M[ount]. W[ashington].
p. 34 Plants, black-berry – blue-berry
p. 34 Clouds M[ount] Pleasant
p. 36 Unitarians & Norton
p. 36 Young firs on prostrate trees
p. 38 Theodore Parker’s Xtianity [sic Christianity].
g p. 38 Not like T. Payne – not for […] miracles
p. 38 X Ascent of M[ount]. Washington
p. 38 X Plants dwarfed high up –
p. 40 X Why no trees –
p. 40 X Zone of lichen geographicus
p. 40 X Spruce topped by rein deer [sic reindeer] moss
p. 40 X Horns in wood [ink smeared] Zone of Horns
p. 40 X Snow till Aug[ust]. On M[ount]. W[ashington]
p. 42 X Trees dwarfed near summit
p. 42 X View from summit – mist
p. 42 X Lichen geographicus. Spruce, club-moss
p. 44 X View from summit
p. 44 Extending area of Freedom
p. 44 Quoddy Fog. Silene acaulis
p. 46 X Plants on summit
p. 46 X View from summit
p. 46 X Hatred to G[reat]. Brit[ain]. Political capital.
p. 48 Clever boys in district schools patronized
p. 48 Romanism fit for the Irish
p. 48 & 93 X Servants travelling as ladies & gents -
p. 48 Coleman on English labourers.
p. 48 X Equality to all but negros.
p. 50 Servants not eating or sit [‘or sit’ interlined] with masters of late
p. 50 Burns read next to Shakespeare
p. 50 X Introd[uced] weeds in N[ew]. Eng[land]. Exceeds native plants
[p. 50] X Wenham Lake
[p. 50] Steamers 20 m an hour.
p. 52 [? Whenever] habit of tobacco chewing
p. 52 Fish frozen in ice revived
[p. 52] Love of Nature beginning in N[ew]. Engl[and].
[p. 52 & 54] Kemble, [? printer] democrat, Senator.
[p. 52] Dear partner “one of the force”
p. 54 Methodists & congregationists [? vis a vis]
p. 54 Ipswich [? printer] – equality.
p. 56 Americans more communication than English
p. 56 - [Americans] know all that is said or written of them
p. 58 Good servants must be well paid.
p. 58 X - [Good servants] expect to rise. ambition,
p. 58 Even Halliburton [sic Haliburton] shows Yankees super[ior]
[p. 58] Indian under the French
p. 60 French Canadians stand still
p. 60 Free trade, conduct of G[reat]. Br[itain].
p. 60 Town meetings in New Engl[and].
p. 62 Small farmer often less than labourer
p. 62 X Liberty of Press – stop my paper
p. 64 Mrs. Royle’s book showing up priest craft
p. 66 Night & candle light meetings
p. 66 & 93 X Revivals – symptoms described – describers?
p. 68 A dangerous book –
p. 68 Abolition. J. Q. Adams
p. 70 Parties balanced, voters taxes paid.
p. 70 Negros in gallery or corner of ch[urch].y[ard].
p. 70 Texas – Southerner why bullies
p. 71 Negro going to heaven with same smell,
p. 72 X Politically a trade – Irish voters
p. 72 Select men no bribery -
p. 74 Protection– nursing infant flame
p. 74 Nullifiers liked Eng[land]. till she was dangerous [-‘gerous’ interlined]
[p. ] X Slavery, one cast must rule
p. 76 Eng[land]. with capitol begging lends too freely,
p. 76 Yankee invention – Justice pure
p. 76 Sallow faces – change of climate
p. 78 Mad houses
p. 78 & 86 Unitarians less shunned by orthodox [‘86 &’ interlined]
p. 78 X Children precose [sic precoce], over-schooled -
p. 80 & 91 Massachusetts. oppos[ed] yet imitated [‘91 &’ interlined]
p. 80 X Insanity increased in 1837 no blacks mad [‘mad’ interlined]
p. 80 X Men of leizure [sic leisure], prejudice ag[aingst].
p. 82 Religion without creeds
p. 82 Moses the god of the Puritans
p. 84 X Baptism of a geologist
p. 84 Materialism, Coleridge –
p. 86 Robinia & cerambyx at Burlington
p. 86 Temperance movement very modern
p. 86 & 87 Insects blown in from sea
p. 88 Peat thin in White mountains
p. 88 & 89 X Day of Doom when taught
p. 88 Universalists
p. 89 X Rubric – charge bayonets
p. 89 Daniel Webster’s talent etc.
p. 89 Popes bull ag[ainst]. Slavery, 3 cheers for
p. 90 Sable fox – trapper
p. 90 Religion in N[ew]. Engl[and]. Norton, Parker
p. 91 Unitarians for miracles
p. 91 Yankeedom most American & best
p. 91 X Echo of horn at Fabians
p. 92 Mrs. Child’s letters
p. 92 X Mass meeting of Tylers friends
p. 92 X Pteris aquilina. spruce, White Mount[ain]. Botany [-‘any’ interlined]
p. 93, 66 X Revivals – sinking religion
p. 93, 107 X Equality – servants becoming ladies on tour
Oct. 9.
p. 94 & 100 Plants, mosses club-moss - Franconia
p. 96 Labourer getting schooling - - college
p. 96 & 98 & 100 X? Clergy payment of
p. 98 X Town meetings select men [sic selectmen]
p. 98 Van Buren, paying in glory
p. 100 Parties lose popularity when successful
p. 100 & 103 X Clergy how paid
p. 100 X Epilobium, fire weeds
p. 101 Lotteries - President[ial]. Elect[ion]. - Echo - Slavery
p. 102 Yankee like Scotch
Oct 10
p. 102 Primogeniture
p. 103 Harmony of sects (109) salary of minister –
p. 104 X Franconia Notch, granite, birds, plants –
p. 105 X Revivals, methodist, baptist -
p. 107 X Franconia granite – 166 – Bears killed
p. 107 Harrison election – equality factory girl
p. 108 X Millerites – bank note tribute to Cӕsar [Caesar]
p. 109 Term friend for relation – toleration
p. 110 X? Cattle, spruce, pumpkins – geology - ice Exfoliation
p. 112 X Woodstock. Comptonia – Millerites


  • Creation: 3 October 1845 - 10 October 1845


Language of Materials



117 folios

58 Leaves

1 volume