Travels Through North America, during the years 1825 and 1826

By His Highness,
Bernhard, Duke of Saxe-Weimar Eisenach

I visited several bookstores; the store of Messrs. Carey, Lea & Carey appeared to be well assorted; Tanner's is the best mapstore.

The Philadelphia Museum was commenced by an artist, Charles Willson Peale, and was subsequently incorporated as a joint stock company. The most remarkable curiosity it contains is undoubtedly the famous skeleton of the mastodon, which has rendered this museum so celebrated. The height of the shoulders is eleven feet; the length of the animal, including the stooping of the back, from the point of the head to the tail, measures thirty-one feet, but in a straight line seventeen and a half feet; its two large tusks are ten feet seven inches long; one of the back teeth, for there are no front teeth, measures eighteen and a half inches in circumference, and weighs four pounds ten ounces. The whole skeleton weighs about one thousand pounds. I was somewhat astonished that the knee of the fore-foot bends backwards and not forwards. This skeleton was found in a swamp in the state of New York, and there is a painting representing the colossal machine and building, by which the skeleton was removed from the swamp. For the sake of contrast, they have put the skeleton of an elephant next the mastodon. Under its foot is the skeleton of a mouse.

The academy of fine arts is a collection of paintings and statues. The best works which we saw belong to Count Survilliers. Among these was the count's own portrait, robed as king of Spain, the portrait of his lady, and his two daughters, while yet children, all painted by Gérard of Paris. There were four busts, one of Madame Mère, the queen of Naples, Madame Murat, the princess Borghese, and the empress Marie Louise; and last of all a statue, representing the infant king of Rome, all by Canova. Amongst other paintings I observed several from the Flemish school, very few Italian, but some very fine pieces by Granet, which represented the interior of an Italian cloister. Two large paintings, one representing the children of Niobe by Rehberg, and the other the raising from the dead by touching the bones of the prophet Elisha, by the American painter Allston; both have merit, but I was neither pleased with the coloring nor execution. The statues are mostly casts, copies of the most famous antiquities. I observed, however, amongst them, the Venus of Canova.

In wandering through the streets I was struck with a building having a dome similar to the Roman pantheon; it was a Baptist chapel. I accordingly entered; the interior arrangement was very simple, and offered nothing remarkable. In the midst of the chapel is the baptismal font for baptizing grown persons; it is a marble bath, something in the manner of the bath in the palace of Weimar. While speaking on this subject, I will notice the various sects that have churches in this city. 1st, Catholics; 2d, Protestant Episcopal; 3d, Presbyterian; 4th, Scotch Presbyterian; 5th, Covenanters, or Reformed Presbyterians; 6th, Baptist; 7th, the Methodist; most of the colored people belong to the latter sect; 8th, the Friends or Quakers; 9th, the Free Quakers; 10th, German Lutheran; 11th, German Reformed; 12th, Dutch Reformed; 13th, Universalists ; 14th, Swedenborgians; 15th, Moravians, or United Brethren; 16th, Swedish Lutheran; 17th, Mount Zion; 18th, Menonists; 19th, Bible Christians; 20th, Mariners Church; 21st, Unitarians; and 22d, Israelites; and all these sects live peaceably in the vicinity of each other.



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