PREFACE TO THE FIRST CHEAP EDITION OF "AMERICAN NOTES"
IT is nearly eight years since this book was first published. I present it, unaltered, in the Cheap Edition; and such of my opinions as it expresses, are quite unaltered too.
My readers have opportunities of judging for themselves whether the influences and tendencies which I distrust in America, have any existence not in my imagination. They can examine for themselves whether there has been anything in the public career of that country during these past eight years, or whether there is anything in its present position, at home or abroad, which suggests that those influences and tendencies really do exist. As they find the fact, they will judge me. If they discern any evidences of wronggoing in any direction that I have indicated, they will acknowledge that I had reason in what I wrote. If they discern no such thing, they will consider me altogether mistaken.
Prejudiced, I never have been otherwise than in favour of the United States. No visitor can ever have set foot on those shores, with a stronger faith in the Republic than I had, when I landed in America.
I purposely abstain from extending these observations to any length. I have nothing to defend, or to explain away. The truth is the truth; and neither childish absurdities, nor unscrupulous contradictions, can make it otherwise. The earth would still move round the sun, though the whole Catholic Church said No.
I have many friends in America, and feel a grateful interest in the country. To represent me as viewing it with ill-nature, animosity, or partisanship, is merely to do a very foolish thing, which is always a very easy one; and which I have disregarded for eight years, and could disregard for eighty more.
LONDON, JUNE 22, 1850.
PREFACE TO THE "CHARLES DICKENS" EDITION OF "AMERICAN NOTES"
MY readers have opportunities of judging for themselves whether the influences and tendencies which I distrusted in America, had, at that time, any existence but in my imagination. They can examine for themselves whether there has been anything in the public career of that country since, at home or abroad, which suggests that those influences and tendencies really did exist. As they find the fact, they will judge me. If they discern any evidences of wrong-going, in any direction that I have indicated, they will acknowledge that I had reason in what I wrote. If they discern no such indications, they will consider me altogether mistaken - but not wilfully.
Prejudiced, I am not, and never have been, otherwise than in favour of the United States. I have many friends in America, I feel a grateful interest in the country, I hope and believe it will successfully work out a problem of the highest importance to the whole human race. To represent me as viewing AMERICA with illnature, coldness, or animosity, is merely to do a very foolish thing: which is always a very easy one.
CHAPTER I - GOING AWAY
CHAPTER II - THE PASSAGE OUT
CHAPTER III - BOSTON
CHAPTER III - BOSTON, cont.
CHAPTER IV - AN AMERICAN RAILROAD. LOWELL AND ITS FACTORY SYSTEM
CHAPTER V - WORCESTER. THE CONNECTICUT RIVER. HARTFORD. NEW HAVEN. TO NEW YORK
CHAPTER VI - NEW YORK
CHAPTER VII - PHILADELPHIA, AND ITS SOLITARY PRISON
CHAPTER VIII - WASHINGTON. THE LEGISLATURE. AND THE PRESIDENT`S HOUSE
CHAPTER IX - A NIGHT STEAMER ON THE POTOMAC RIVER. VIRGINIA ROAD, AND A BLACK DRIVER. RICHMOND. BALTIMORE. THE HARRISBURG MAIL, AND A GLIMPSE OF THE CITY. A CANAL BOAT
CHAPTER X - SOME FURTHER ACCOUNT OF THE CANAL BOAT, ITS DOMESTIC ECONOMY, AND ITS PASSENGERS. JOURNEY TO PITTSBURG ACROSS THE ALLEGHANY MOUNTAINS. PITTSBURG
CHAPTER XI - FROM PITTSBURG TO CINCINNATI IN A WESTERN STEAMBOAT. CINCINNATI
CHAPTER XII - FROM CINCINNATI TO LOUISVILLE IN ANOTHER WESTERN STEAMBOAT; AND FROM LOUISVILLE TO ST. LOUIS IN ANOTHER. ST. LOUIS
CHAPTER XIII - A JAUNT TO THE LOOKING-GLASS PRAIRIE AND BACK
CHAPTER XIV - RETURN TO CINCINNATI. A STAGE-COACH RIDE FROM THAT CITY TO COLUMBUS, AND THENCE TO SANDUSKY. SO, BY LAKE ERIE, TO THE FALLS OF NIAGARA
CHAPTER XV - IN CANADA; TORONTO; KINGSTON; MONTREAL; QUEBEC; ST. JOHN`S. IN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN; LEBANON; THE SHAKER VILLAGE; WEST POINT
CHAPTER XVI - THE PASSAGE HOME
CHAPTER XVI - SLAVERY
CHAPTER XVIII - CONCLUDING REMARKS