Excerpt from Sketches of Eighteenth Century America: More "Letters From an American Farmer"
Crevecoeur, the American farmer, advancing argu ments against English taxation Of his fellow country men, was led into a statement Of the difficulties that surrounded the husbandman in the new World. He described the problem of acquiring, from rascally land agents, a bona fide title to a tract on the frontier. He pictured the work Of clearing away the trees and diﬂi culties of living alone in the forest. He did not forget the heavy burden Of mortgage that pressed on practi cally every frontier holding. Then, when the forest was cleared and the farm established, he told of the early settler's fight with an astonishing variety of natural enemies. In this description he was aided by his great interest in nature and by his acute Observation Of the world Of birds, animals and insects. Frequently, as in ant-hill Town, Crevecoeur describes wild life for the pure love of nature. In honest disgust he wrote: Strange that you should have in England SO many learned and wise men, and that none should ever have come over here to describe some part Of this great field which nature presents. But he took pains to record that this same nature caused the farmer no end Of difficulty.
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