Emerson family papers  1851-1881
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Collection Scope and Content Note

"Notes for a Journal of a Pedestrian Tour" is a 112-page account of a group's walking trip from Baltimore, Maryland, through northern Maryland, southern Pennsylvania, and eastern West Virginia in the late summer of 1816.

The account, written after the journey, is divided into 12 titled chapters chronicling the group's experiences. Notes pertain to the scenery and acquaintances the group encountered, both old and new. Group members "Suffolk" and "Sidney" left Baltimore on August 6, 1816, and traveled to Frederick, Maryland, by way of the Patapsco River. There, they picked up their luggage, sent ahead by stage. They proceeded west toward the mountains and entered West Virginia just before September; they stayed at Harper's Ferry and Bath (Berkeley Springs). After several weeks traveling by foot, the men joined two Baltimore companions, "Manly" and "Moreton," on a trip down the Potomac River toward "George Town." The party then returned to Baltimore. In its rendering of dialogue and descriptions of scenery, the account often adopts a prose style similar to that found in fictional narrative. The volume has colored ink drawings of several men and women gathered around a roaring fire and the "Falls of Potomac." The author also included a poem by the travelers, entitled "An Evening on Potomac" (pages 97-109).

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1: Introduction (pages 1-5)
  • Chapter 2: The Peerless (pages 6-16)
  • Chapter 3: The Maid of Benvoirloch (pages 16-42)
  • Chapter 4: Frederick Town (pages 43-47)
  • Chapter 5: The Misfortune (pages 47-53)
  • Chapter 6: Harper's Ferry (pages 53-57)
  • Chapter 7: The Cave (pages 57-69)
  • Chapter 8: The Thunderstorm (pages 70-78)
  • Chapter 9: The Merriest on the Border (pages 78-87)
  • Chapter 10: The Descent (pages 88-109)
  • Chapter 11: The Conclusion (pages 109-112)
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