The Albany register. (Albany, Or.) 1868-18??, December 20, 1873, Image 1

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    L P Fishet
NO. 30.
Koffce Kalknlll mil hl Country.
We have long been familiar with
the sable republic of Liberia, its
rapid progress, and constitutional
government, existing in the midst
of savage tribes ; nor is Dahomey,
with its fierce black king, quite un
known beyond the confines of his
kingdom ; but it was reserved to
the present quarrel between Eng
land and the Ashantees to give
European and American fame to
that dark potentate, Koffee Kal
kalli. Hitherto, but vague rumor
has given out that Ashantee was a
bellicose ad rather formidable, but
irretriveably savage nation; what
its boundaries and extent are,
even yet an enigma; it is only
known that it lies between benight
ed Dahomey on one side and more
than semi-civilized Liberia on the
other, while south of it is the fa
mous West-African Gold Coast
Just where Coomassie, the Ashan
tee capital, stands, is only matter
for conjecture ; but that Coomassie
is much more than a mere strag
gang collection ot rude huts, as
most African capitals are, is ren
dered well nigh certain by a French
traveler, who ail venturously peiie
trated thither a few years ago. lie
describes Coomassie as a large and
really good-looking city, with reg
ular streets and squares, and dwell
ings which, though rude compared
with Russell Square, or the Ruede
Rivoli, wear the aspect of comfort,
and even, occasionally, of luxury.
The royal place of Koffce is a rather
imposing edifice, with window and
door frames lined with quite a thick
lining of solid gold. Gold, indeed,
is one of the most ordinary orna
ments of the swarthy monarch and
his courtiers. The axe and um
brella handles are often solid gold;
and golden nuggets are the fashion
able trinket woru around the necks
of the Ashantee lords and ladies.
The suspicion entertained by the
English and the Dutch, both of
whom have had settlements on the
coast, that there are extensive gold
rames in the interior, is seemingly
confirmed by the tale of ihe rash
sojourner in Coomassie; he tells ot
thousands ot slaves employed in the
river on which the capital stands,
collecting the gold ; and his stories
of the nuggets he saw are most tan
talizing. Ashantee is further descrihed as
a hilly and well-watered country,
with vast forests and wild sugar
cane fields, and a wealth of produc
tion in tobacco, corn, rice, gums,
dy?s, and aromatic plants ; but it
also contains an awe-inspiring vari
ety of wild beasts, among theiu ele
phants and tigers and lions and
leopards, not to speak of the hip
popotami and the alligators. More
over, the climate of this part of
Africa, especially near the coast, is
most destructive of European life,
being a strange combination of un
healthy moisture and excessive heat.
The .thermometer varies during the
year something like eighty degrees.
The regions about the coast are, be
sides, very swampy, and full of
miasmatic influence. The climate
of Ashantee itself is said to be some
what less fatal, though in the rainy
season, just now approaching, the
whole region is dangerous to those
accustomed to the temperate cli
mates north of the equator. It is a
palpable proof that the Ashantees
are far from being the the utterly
savage creatures which they have
long been supposed to be, that their
general-in-chief has adopted a sys
tem of warfare against the invading
English of great shrewdness. Me
Ihm systematically avoided a direct
conflict, and has marched his army
among the western tribes, with the
triple object of forcing them into
an alliance with King Koffee, ac
quiring a good base of supplies,
aud delaying the war until the rainy
season arrives to deplete the En
glish ranks by sickness and death
The quarrel between the English
and the Ashantees is not a very in
telligible one: the English have long
held a portion ot the' Gold toast
other sections ot which were pos
sessed by the Danes and the Dutch
J he latter have now also been ac
quired by the English, whose settle
ments, defended by Cane-Coast
Castle and other forts, stretch along
the shores between Liberia and Da
homey. JNorthwara ot these pos
sessions are the peaceful and sub
missive tribes ot the Fantees, As
sins, and Ahantas, which are "pro
tected" by the Jiritish Government:
and beyond them, to the north, are
the undefined dominions of Koffee
Kalkalli. The immediate cause of
the war vas a series of fierce in
cursions of Kins; Koffee against the
Fantees, whom he drove to Cape
Coast, aud whose villages he burn
ed, but the remote cause is alleged
to be the resentment felt by this
potentate at not having acoes to the
sea-coast, and at being deprived ot
the annual stipend which used to
be granted to him by the Dutch.
Whatever the grounds ot the quar
rel, it is certain that the English
cabinet has entered upon a deter
mined war, ai.d intend to conquer
and thoroughly punish the obstrep
erous Koffee. Thus they have an
other Abyssinia on their hands, an
other Theodoras to demolish. . Nor
is the struggle likely to be a very
easy one, nor are the costs of it cap
able of easy reckoning. When Sir
Robert Napier set out for Magdala,
it waseslimated that the war would
cost England four millions sterling
tor it ; she has actually had to pay
nine. 1 he Ashantee war is calcu
latcd at two millions; it is not un
likely to cost five, Koffee lias been
making it is suspected, important
alliances with many interior tribes;
that lie and lus generals are skilled
warriors, they have already betray
ed; the English know nothing either
of the numbers of his army, the
manner of their equipment, or of
the topographical features of the
country they are about to invade;
they do know that the resistance of
Ashantee armies is not the' onlv
danger they have to face, but wild
beasts also, and a most treacherous
climate ; and before they reach the
promised Eldorado of the river
Harra, and the capital, with its sus
pected golden stores, they must
probably endure a long, weary, and
uncertain campaign, in which they
can scarcely hope to do more than
temporarily put an end to Ashantee
excursions cnastward.
Don't Do It. Never box your
children's cars. Medical men un
qualifiedly condemn the practice,
.Many a child lias been made deaf
I 1 1 1 !l .1
Dy iiavuig us ears uoxeu, ana own
ers, from the same cause, have been
afflicted for years, and sometimes
for life, with painful diseases of the
auditory organs. The passage of
the ear is closed on its inner side
by a thin membrane, especially
adapted to tie influenced by every
impulse of the air, and with noth
ing but the air to support it inter
nally. Any sudden or forcible com
pression of the air in front of this
membrane is likely to injure it.
Such a shock is almost sure to dis
tend the membrane unnaturally,
and sometimes it breaks it, espec
ially when from previous disease
the membrane has been weakened.
Such a shock naturally injures the
nerve of hearing.
Sftu Francisco has been allowed
five additional letter carriers.
The Dtfflerence.
When a woman has a hen to
drive into a coop she takes hold of
her hoops with both hands, and
shakes them quietly toward the de
linquent, and says, " Shew! there."
The hen takes one look at the ob
ject, to convince herself that it's a
woman, and then stalks majestical
ly into the coop in perfect disgust of
the sex. A man don't do that
way. He goes out of doors, and
says, "It's singular that nobody
in this house can drive a hen but
myself;" and, picking up a stick of
wood, hurls it at the offending
biped, and observes " Get in there,
you thief!" The hen immediately
loses her reason, and dashes to the
opposite end of the yard. The man
straightway dashes after her. She
comes back again with her head
down, her wings out, and followed
by an assortment of stove-wood,
fruit-cans and coal-clinkers, with a
much-pnffing and very-mad man in
the rear. Then she skims up on
the stoop and under the barn, and
over a fence or two, and around
the house, and back again into the
coop, all the while talking as only
an excited hen can talk, and all the
while followed by things 'conveni
ent for handling, and by a man
whose coat is on the saw-buck, and
whose hat is on the ground, and
whose perspiration and profanity
appear to have no limit. By this
time the other hens have come
out to take a hand in the debate,
and help dodge the missiles and
then the man says every hen on the
place shall be sold in the morning,
and puts on bis things and goes
dowu street ; aud the woman dons
her hoops and has every one of
those hens housed and contented in
two minutes, and the only sound
heard on the premises is the ham
mering by the oldest boy as he
mends the broken pickets.
Saluting the American flag.
A short time since a most ridicu
lous affair happened in the harbor
ot Kio Janeiro. An ice ship from
boston entered the bay, command
ed by a Capt. Green, in the South
American trade, b ort Santa Cruz,
not recognizing his house hag, hail
ed him, and ordered him to 'heave
to." But the worthy skipper didn't
speak Portugese, and the simple
statement of the name ot his vessel,
which he hurled at the fort, was
not at all satisfactory ; so a blank
shot was fired as a mild suggestion
tor him to stop. Rut the C aptain
called tor his revolver, and, point
ing it skyward, tired six suc
cessive shots. I hen a solid shot
from the fort skipped across her
how, and another, better aimed,
passed through his fore-sail. The
fort and two shore batteries opened
tire npon him. and several ot his
light spars were cut away. But
he held on his way rejoicing, load
ing and firing his revolver. lie
finally reached quarantine, and
came to anchor just as his flying jib
boom went by the board. He was
then so near the other shipping that
they dare fire ou him no longer,
and the police boat, the custom
bouse boat, and the health boat, all
boarded him together with the
Captain ot the fort, who, with mora
vigor than politeness, wanted to
kuow " Why he didn't heave!"
" Heave to ! ' ejaculated the as
tonished skipper, " was that what
you wanted? Good Lord! I
thought you was salutin' the Amer
ican flag!"
"Diable!" shouted the officers
in chorus, and set the case dowu as
additional evidence of the lunacy
which they regarded as a necessary
ingredient of the American charac
ter. The Virginias has been mlasuud,
and sailed For a nerthen perk
Aflhirn In tirceeet
While one's ears are filled With
the din of the French Assembly,
and one's eye are blinded by the
flame and smoke that commingle
into a lurid pall above unhappy
Spain, it is not likely that far-away
Greece should attract much of the
attention of the Btndent ot trans
Atlantic politics. But in that de
generate although once famous
land of the past, there is going on a
quiet revolutionary movement
which may yet restore some of its
faded glory, aud glint the banner of
modern Greece with something of
the splendor which radiated from it
when Athens wan the intellectual
queen of the world. Greece has
attained its full independence, and,
especially since the evacuation ot
the Ionian Isles, stands in a posi
tion to render that independence
fruitful of national prosperity. The
lung has larger power, perhaps,
than the average constitutional sov
ereign, but in his attempt to lift
up his people he must act with
a hrmess and enterprise, and a
largeness of views, commensurate
with his patriotic desire. Before he
dreams of establishing a wise and
progressive government, it is abso
lutely necessary that many of the
glaring evils under which Greece
suffers should be done away with.
And the chief of these is the system1
of brigandage which still flourishes
in the waste interior. So long as
the farmer, bringing his scanty pro
duce to market, is forced to remu
nerate the robber who stops him
in a lonely ravine, so long will ag
riculture languish. And if he es
cape the brigand, there is still an
other robber the tax-gatherer
who is almost as remorseless. The
whole system of rural taxation in
Greece lacks common sense, and is
consequently mijnst. But despite
these drawbacks the country has
made a decided move in the line of
educational reform; and it is in
raising the standard ot the popular
intelligence that she must look
principally for the desired improve
ment. Heading and writing are,
after all, the machinery of pow
er, and the phrase, " the pen is
mightier than the sword," is no
sophism. It was her intellectual
graces that raised Greece to such a
dazzling height in the past, and
her return to the neighborhood of
her old importance cai only be ac
complished by some such means.
And now is her chance. The de
cay of the Ottoman Empire already
foreshadows the part that Greece
may yet play in the drama of the
East, if she is but truo to herself.
But there are political adventurers
to be- gotten rid of, and the line ot
demarcation between church and
State must be drawn clearly. As
it is now, the ecclesiast hampers the
statesman. When these things are
done the sails ot Greece will be
filled by a fair wind, and her course
will be smooth, should, there be no
interference on the part of Russia.
But buoIi possible interference is
too remote to be looked at now.
A good housewife should not be
a person of one idea, but should be
familiar with tka flower garden as
well as with the flour barrel', and,
though her lesson should oo to les
sen expense, odor ot a hue rose
should not be less valued than the
order ot her household. She will
prefer a yard of shrubbery to a yard
ot satin. If her husband is a skil
ful tower of grain, she is equally
skilful as a seiner of garments. He
keeps his hoes bright by use; she
keeps the host ot the whole family
in order.
i How can we get rich ? By lay
ing aside the effort to become weal
thy, and trying to be comfortable.
The Treasury Department is
somewhat pressed for moriey, not
only by the falling off of revenues,
but by' the appropriation of five
millions of dollars foi naval purpos
es, and the payment of the twenty
million loan of 1858. Secretary
Richardson claims that it is better
to obtain the necessary funds by
taxation than by increasing the
national debt. He suggests a higher
tax on tea and coffee.
Tlie House of Representatives
has passed a bill authorizing the
temporary increase of the Navy
from 8,500 to 10,000 men.
Flections for Assemblymen were
held in parts of France on the 14th.
Castelar and Salmeron have had
a reconciliation.
The English off the gold coast
are suffering with fever.
Prof. Proctor, the English As
tronomer Royal, has opposed the
award of the gold medal to Miss
Mitchell, on the ground that, altho'
she had undoubtedly discovered the
comet, she bad neglected to send
news of the discovery by the first
mail. Professor I'roctor predicts a
wonderful scientific future for Amer
ica. A Tribune special says the Pres
ident refuses to accept the resigna
tion of Sickles, and he remains at
The Supreme Court has decided
that States have the right to tax
Increase of public debt during
the month, five millions.
Ou the 16th, in the House, Sar
gent introduced a bill relative to
the public lands in California, and
fixing the uniform price at $1 25
per acre for mineral and agricultu
ral lands.
Page introduced a bill making it
felony to contract for the employ
ment of Coolies in this country.
Nesmith introduced a bill to as
certain the losses by Indian raids in
Oregon, and to transfer the man
agement ot Indian affairs to the
War Department.
In the Senate, Mitchell introduc
ed a bill directing the Secretary of
War to cause surveys to be made
u determine the practicability aud
cost of removing the Cascades and
Dalles of the Columbia river. Or
dered printed.
A territlio storm in Sheffield,
England, destroyed much property
and many lives.
General Howard is up before a
House Committee, and waives tech
nicalities, claiming to court the full
est investigation. .
The late storm in England proved
disastrous all over the north.
The Swiss Government has reim
bursed Count Staempfi the expenses
incurred by him as a member of the
Geneva Court Arbitration. The
Count declined any honoration in
the form of a testimonial.
The bill repealing the bankrupt
act has passed the lower house of
Wool m Wrifadelphia ou the 16th
was stiff with an advancing ten.
dency. California fine 85c, coarse,
20 to 30c per poiuJ.