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Books for Boys and Girls.
BY OLD HUMPHREY.
BARTH'S BIBLE STORIES, 2 vols. 18mo. THE OLD SEA CAPTAIN; beautifully illus
Cloth boards, 1s. each ; together, 2s.; royal edition, trated with numerous Woodcuts. Square 16mo, su
3s.; half-bound, 49. perior cloth boards, gilt edges, 48.
ISABEL; or Influence. 18mo, with Engravings. WANDERINGS IN THE ISLE OF WIGHT,
1s. cloth boards. with ncat Views of many of the more Celebrated STORIES OF SCHOOL-BOYS. 18mo. With Objects in the Island. 16mo, superior cloth boards, Engravings. . ls. 6d. cloth boards ; 2s. extra boarcis, gilt edges, 2s. 60.
gilt edges. LOITERINGS AMONG THE LAKES OF ROSA'S CHILDHOOD; or, Everyday Scenes.
CUMBERLAND and WESTMORELAND, illus- By the Author of “Home Life.” 18mno. With En. trated by numerous Views of Scenery, and an Oil gravings. ls. cloth ; 1s. 6d. extra boards, gilt edges. Colour representation of Derwent Water, by Baxter. HAPPY RESTORATIONS. Three Narratives, 16mo, superior cloth boards, gilt edges, 3s.
entitled, “ The Great Preparation;" “ The Young THE TRAVELLER; or, Description of various Footman ;” and “The Second-hand Dress."
Wonders in Nature and Art. 18mo, cloth boards, 18mo. With Engravings. 1s. cloth.
LOOK UP; or, Girls and Flowers. With En. A PRESENT IN PROSE, FOR YOUNG gravings. 1s. 6d. neat boards; 2s. extra boards, gilt
PEOPLE. With Engravings. 18mo, cloth boards, 1s. edges. THE COUNTRY; or, Old Michael and Young CATHERINE HOWARD; or, Trials and Tri
Maurice. With Engravings. 18mo, cloth boards, umphs. 18mo. With Engravings. ls. 6d. cloth 1s. 6d.; half-bound, 2s.
boards; 2s. extra boards. LEARNING TO FEEL, Learning to Think, and HARTFIELD; or, Emily at School. 18mo.
Learning to Act. In three separate vols, with nu- With Engravings. Is. 6d. cloth boards; 2s. extra merous Cuts. 18mo, cloth boards, 1s. 6d.; half- cloth boards, gilt edges. bound, 2s. each.
ROBERT DAWSON; or, The Brave Spirit. PLAY HOURS; or, the Happy Children. In- 18mo. With Engravings. ls. 6d. cloth boards; 2s.
tended for those under Ten Years of Age. With extra boards, gilt edges. numerous Engbellishments. 18mo, cloth, 1s.; half- THE SISTER'S FRIEND; or, Christmas Holi. bound, 2s.
days at Home. Engravings. ls. 64. neat boards; FOOTPRINTS OF POPERY; or, Places where 28. extra boards.
Martyrs have Suffered. With many wood-cut Illus- HOME LIFE. 18mo. With Engravings. ls. 6d.
trations. 18mo, cloth, 1s.; extra bds. gilt edges, Is. 6d. cloth boards; 2s. extra boards, gilt edges. AUNT UPTON AND HER NEPHEWS AND
CITY COUSINS. 18mo. Engravings. ls. 6d. NIECES. Embellished with Cuts. 18mo, cloth, boards; 2s. extra boards, gilt edges. 1s.; half-bound, 2s.
NATURE'S WONDERS; or, God's Care over WALKS IN LONDON; or, Extracts from the
all his Works. 18mo. With Engravings. 2s. cloth Journal of Mr. Joseph Wilkins. 32mo, cloth, 8d. boards. THE ENCOURAGER. 32mo. Cloth, 8d. PEEPS AT NATURE; or, God's Works and THE VILLAGE; containing an Account of some Man's Wants. 32mo. With Engravings. ls. 6d. of the Young People in it. 32mo, cloth, 8d.
cloth boards. MY GRANDFATHER GREGORY. 32mo, VILLAGE SCIENCE; or, The Laws of Nature cloth, 8d.
Explained. 18mo. With Engravings. 2s. boards. MY GRANDMAMMA GILBERT.
THE LIVES OF THE CÆSARS; or, The Jucloth, 8d.
venile Plutarch. By CATHERINE SINCLAIR. 18mo. LESSONS WORTH LEARNING, FOR GIRLS.
With Engravings. ls. 6d. boards. 18mo. ls. cloth boards.
THE CLAIMS OF THE GOSPEL ON THE OLD HUMPHREY'S COUNTRY STROLLS- YOUNG. By the Rev. JOEL PARKER, D.D. of Phi. to Windsor Castle, the Devil's Bridge, Stonehenge,
ladelphia. 18mo. ls. boards ; 23. half-bound moKenilworth Castle, Netley Abbey, Norwood, Dover,
etc. etc. 18mo, cloth boards, 28.; half-bound, 3s. GUIDE TO THE SAVIOUR. With Engravings. OLD HUMPHREY'S COUNTRY PICTURES; 18mo. ls. cloth; ls. 6d. extra boards, gilt edges.
or, Drawing without a Pencil. 18mo, with numerous Engravings, cloth boards, 1s. 6d.; extra boards,
THE ORPHAN'S FRIEND. Engravings. 32mo. gilt, 2s.
8d. boards ; ls. half-bound. PLEASANT TALES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE.
THE FIRST TRIAL, AND OTHER TALES:
illustrative of Right Motives and Right Actions. 1s. cloth boards.
18.no. With Engravings. Cloth boards, 18. THE BOY'S WEEK-DAY BOOK ; replete with FRANK NETHERTON ; or, The Talisman.
attractive Illustrations of the Duties and Pursuits of 18mo. With Engravings. 16. 6d. cloth boards; 28. Week-Day Life, numerous Engravings. Foolscap extra boards. 8vo, cloth boards, elegant, gilt edges, 3s.; bf.-bd. 58.;
SUNDAY HOURS. A Book for Young People. morocco, 6s. 6d.
18mo. With Engravings. ls. 6d. cloth boards ; 23.
extra boards, gilt edges. THE GIRL'S WEEK-DAY BOOK. Fcap. 8vo, MISSIONARY BOOK FOR THE YOUNG.
with Engravings, cloth, 3s.; half-morocco, 6s.; mo- 18mo. With Engravings. 18. cloth ; 1s. 6d. extra rocco, 6s. 6d.
boards, gilt edges. LONDON : 56, PATERNOSTER ROW, AND 164, PICCADILLY.
A VISIT TO A GUANO ISLAND. fertilizing qualities and easy mode of application AMONGST all the new-fangled manures introduced have rendered it a general favourite with the by experimentalizing agriculturists during the farmers, though the immense distance of the places last twenty years, not one has been so rapidly and from which it is chiefly obtained, and its conseuniversally adopted as guano. Its astonishing quent high price in England, must necessarily No 80, 1853.
limit its use even if the supplies were inexhaust- and then spreads into a level surface that gradually ible.
descends on every other side to within a few yards The island of Ichaboe, on the west coast of Af- of the water. Here and there, rough craggy rica, from whence guano was first obtained in large points thrust their white heads through the brown quantities, is, perhaps, a most remarkable instance crust of guano, which has completely filled up the of a desolate rock becoming suddenly the port of deep hollows that have originally existed in the destination for hundreds of large ships, and the island, and would soon, had it not been disturbed, source of immense wealth to numerous individuals. have covered even these crests of what were once But Ichaboe was soon exhausted, and the dusty tall pinnacles. The only safe landing-place is on a treasure that had for many centuries been accumu- narrow strip of beach, the remainder of the island lating on its rocky bosom was literally swept being surrounded by low rocks and small detached away. The once busy island bas now returned to reefs; but the singular formation has greatly faciits former loneliness, and the fleet of ships that litated the loading of ships, enabling the crews to gathered round it seek on still more distant coasts accomplish that in a few days, which, under other the fertilizing powder that shall fatten the impo- circumstances, must have cost them tedious weeks verished fields of old-world countries. In a recent of labour. Close to the face of the rock the water number we gave a sketch, drawn from personal ob- is deep enough to float the largest merchantman, servation, of the rich silver districts of Peru, and and the steady constancy of the trade-wind, which we now ask the reader to accompany us to the rarely increases here beyond a pleasant breeze, same far-off country, for upon her shores there lies enables the ship to lie in perfect safety in close an open mine of wealth that will bear comparison contact with her two most dangerous enemiesma in value, and far exceed in usefulness, the glitter- rocky island and a dead lee-shore. Paving taken ing veins that traverse her huge mountains. aboard by her boats sufficient guano to ballast her,
More than half the guano imported into Eng. the ship is hauled in close to the steep cliff, to land, during the last ten years, has been obtained which she is securely bound with warps and chains ; from a small group of islands called the Chincas, two anchors being dropped to seaward to enable that lie off the port of Pisco, on the Peruvian coast. her to haul off again when loaded, or in case of Of these islands, the largest, Sangallan, has very accident. little guano upon it, the principal deposits being Down to the very edge of the precipice, on its found on three smaller ones, the most northern of lofty summit, comes the point of a triangular inclothe group. These are emphatically the guano sure, open at its base, and made of strong stakes islands, for they are utterly unproductive of any- driven into the solid guiano, and closely knit tothing besides. They are distinguished as the gether with iron chains. At the point resting north, middle, and south islands. The north island upon the edge of the cliff there is a small opening, has been constantly worked ever since the intro- to which is firmly attached a wide canvass pipe, duction of guano into England; the middle one which hangs down the face of the precipice and has also been occasionally invaded ; but the south passes into the hold of the vessel beneath. The island, on which I believe the accumulation to be inclosure, which will contain several hundred tons, greatest, remains untouched.
is filled with guano by the Indian labourers, and a Every ship bound to the Chincas is compelled to small line that closes the mouth of the pipe being anchor at Pisco, in order to pass the necessary slacked, the whole mass is poured into the ship at custom-house formalities before proceeding to her a rate which very soon completes her cargo. From loading ground. A couple of hours are then suffi- different parts of the pipe, bowlines lead to the cient to carry her across the few miles of water mast-heads of the vessel, and from thence on deck, that intervene, and she soon again drops 'her an- where they are tended by the crew, who alternately chor amongst the numerous fleet that is ever lay- haul upon and slack them so as to keep the long ing off the islands waiting for their turn to load. pipe in motion and prevent its choking. But, howThe odorous scent of the guano is distinctly per- ever well they may succeed in that effort, the men ceptible at several miles distance, and is far from un- have considerable difficulty in avoiding some such pleasant when thus mingled with the pure sea air. catastrophe in their own persons ; for the guano,
The first duty of the crew after the ship's arrival after falling from so great an elevation, rises is to discharge the extra ballast, and as the cap- through the hatchways in one immense cloud, that tains have no dread of port-officers or harbour- completely envelops the ship, and renders the inmasters, the sand or stone is quietly tossed over haling of anything save dust almost a matter of the side, until there is barely sufficient left in the impossibility. The men wear patent respirators, in hold to keep the vessel on an even keel. In the the shape of bunches of tarry oakum, tied across meantime, the long-boat is hoisted out of her their mouths and nostrils ; but the guano mocks berth amidships, and part of the crew are busily at such weak defences, and a brisk continued fusiemployed in bringing off boat-loads of guano from lade of sneezes celebrates the opening of the pipe, the island, to replace the discharged ballast. The and accompanies, in repeated volleys and with unpeculiar odour pervades the whole ship, the care willing tears, the unremitting shower of pungent fully tarred rigging becomes a dirty brown, while dust. In the meantime, a gang of Indians are at the snow-white decks and closely-furled sails as- work in the hold, trimming and
levelling the guano sume the same dark hue.
as it pours from above. How they contrive to On the side next the mainland, the islands rise exist at all in such an atmosphere is matter of precipitously from the sea to a considerable height, astonishment; but even they are unable to remain presenting only a bare, dark wall of rock. From below longer than twenty minutes at one time. the upper edge of the precipice the huge mound of They are then relieved by another party, and reguano slopes rapidly upwards for a short distance, turn on deck, perfectly naked, streaming with per.
spiration, and with their brown skins thickly The islands themselves are perfectly barren. coated with guano. The two parties thus alter- Not a blade of grass, nor even a particle of moss, nately relieving each other, a ship of seven or exists upon them. They present only one brown eight hundred tons is loaded in this manner in arid expanse, incapable of furnishing food for the two or three days, the Indians on the island work- tiniest nibbler that ever gnawed a grain of corn ; ing during the night, and filling up the inclosure, and yet they possess sufficient fertilizing power to ready for shipment on the following day. A smaller transform a barren desert to a fruitful garden ; inclosure and pipe supply the boats of the vessels and they annually furnish food in other lands for anchored off the island.
thousands of hungry mortals who never even The guano is dug out with pick and shovel down heard of their existence! They are also comto the level of the rock, and on the north island the pletely destitute of water, the Indians who live cutting thus formed is in some places from sixty upon them being supplied with this necessary of to eighty feet in depth, in others it is only a few life by the shipping in turns. Every article of inches; but these shallow spots are comparatively food is brought from Pisco, to which port the rare, and usually border on some deep valley firmly guano-diggers occasionally resort, to spend in expacked with the prevailing substance. From the travagance and dissipation their hard-earned wages. pressure of the superincumbent mass, the lower The commandant resides on the north island, in a strata have become almost as hard and compact as miserable cottage. Four poles stuck in the guano, the rock itself, and the colour deepens from a light with grass mats or a few reeds stretched between brown, or sometimes white, at the surface, to nearly them and covered in with a flat roof of the same black at the bottom of the cutting;
material, form specimens of a high order of Chinca The guano of the Chinca islands is said to sur- architecture. Furniture is of course unknown, pass all other deposits in its strength and fertiliz- and clothes are as nearly so as possible ; but the ing qualities, and this is chiefly attributed to the high wages given to the labourers appear to bafact that rain never falls on those islands. Owing lance the désagrémens of their position, for seveto this extreme aridity of the climate, the saline ral Englishmen are amongst their number. Some particles of the manure are never held in solution, of these are employed in mooring the ships alongand are therefore less liable to be lost by evapora- side the rock. tion than where the surface of the mass is fre- From a recent return made to the House of quently washed by heavy rains. Large lumps of Commons, on the subject of guano, some idea may very strong and pure ammonia are, in fact, often be obtained of the immense quantity of this maturned up by the diggers. The thick fogs, that at nure consumed in England, and of the vast procertain seasons are of nightly occurrence on the portion of it which is furnished by these insignifi. coast, convert the outer layer into a greasy paste, cant islands. During the eleven years over which which is immediately baked by the sun into a hard the return extends from 1841 to 1851 inclusive crust that prevents even the fogs from penetrating the quantity of guano imported into England into the interior. This crust is completely under- from various parts of the world amounted to mined by the birds that still frequent the islands 1,100,220 tons. Now much of the Ichaboe guano in vast numbers, though they are said to bear no realized more than 201. per ton ; but averaging comparison to the myriads that formerly held sole the whole quantity at its more general and preand undisturbed possession of them. There are sent price of 101., it follows that in eleven years mews, gannets, penguins, pelicans, divers, sheer- the farmers of Great Britain have expended, in the beaks, and many other sorts of sea-fowl, but the purchase of this manure alone, upwards of eleven most common is the guano-bird-a very handsome millions sterling, or more than one million per creature, about the size of a pigeon, beautifully annum! Of this quantity, 558,067 tons, or more variegated, and decorated with two pendant ear. than half of the whole, have been procured from drops. Naturalists, delighting in hard words, call the Chinca islands ; and deducting from the realhim, I believe, sulieta variegata. These web- ized price in England four pounds per ton as the footed colonists form regular towns beneath the cost of freight, the guano shipped during that crust of the guano, the various settlements com- time at the Chincas may be considered as intrinmunicating with each other by galleries running sically worth 3,348,4021. In 1851, the Chincas in all directions, so that it is almost impossible to furnished 199,732 tons—more than double the set foot upon the untouched surface of the island supply of any former year ; though Ichaboe still without sinking to the knee in some feathered stands first in annual produce, that island having lady's nursery, and either smashing her eggs or supplied, in 1845, 207,679 tons. The returns for mutilating her half-fledged progeny. The egg- 1851 warrant the conclusion that in that year there shells, and the remains of fish brought to feed the was expended in Great Britain, in the purchase of young birds, or to be devoured at leisure by the old guano, very nearly two millions and a half of ones, must form a considerable item in the deposits. money! There is little doubt that the annual
Thickly tenanted as are the islands and the supply from the Chincas is now more than two air above them, the waters beneath are no less full hundred thousand tons; and yet, when I visited of life. Shoals of small fish are continually pass the islands in 1850, the vacancy from which these ing through the channels; whales are frequently enormous amounts had been taken bore scarcely seen rolling their huge bodies in the offing; and any proportion to the great bulk that remained the numerous caves that perforate the islands on untouched. And to that mass may now be added every side are inhabited by colonies of seals and the deposits on the Lobos islands, which are, I sea-lions, that wage an unceasing predatory war believe, of considerable magnitude, though of inupon the sparkling shoals that pass, unconscious of ferior quality. all danger, their gloomy surf-bound territories. Besides the guano imported into England, largo