The Author Inspects the Museum at Har|vard College: Account of the Wonder|ful Curiosities, Natural and Artificial, he saw there.
ON my return, I passed through Cambridge; and, by the peculiar polite|ness and urbanity of the then librarian, I inspected the college museum. Here, to my surprise, I found the curiosities of all countries, but our own. When I inquired for the natural curiosities of New England, with specimens of the rude arts, arms, and antiquities of the original possessors of our soil, I was shewn, for the former, an overgrown gourd shell, Page 127 which held, I do not recollect how many gallons; some of the shavings of the can|non, cast under the inspection of Colonel M—; a stuffed wild duck, and the cu|rious fungus of a turnip: and, for the latter, a miniature birch canoe, contain|ing two or three rag aboriginals with paddles, cut from a shingle. This last article, I confess, would not disgrace the baby house of a child, if he was not a|bove seven years of age. To be more serious, I felt then for the reputation of the first seminary of our land. Suppose a Raynal or Buffon should visit us; re|pair to the museum of the university, eagerly inquiring after the natural produc|tions and original antiquities of our coun|try, what must be the sensations of the respectable rulers of the college, to be obliged to produce, to them, these wretch|ed, bauble specimens.