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CASTINE — ITS SABBITH STILLNESS. 79 The Peninsula is some four or five miles in circumference, oblong in shape, and rises gradually from the water's edge to a considerable elevation. The Town is on the southern slope, beneath the battlements of a large and strong forttification erected by the British during the revolutionary war, and taken possession of by them again during the last war. It seems to sleep quietly beneath the arm of a mighly protector, literally to sleep, for there is not what can be called bustle or stir therein from morn to mid-day, or latest eve. No carts, wagons, or chaises are heard rattling along the fine-gravelled streets. The town contains but twelve hundred inhabitants and two hundred of these form a village by themselves several miles from the Peninsula. All business is transacted by water. So that a Sabbath stillDess pervades the air every day of the week. Castine is a lovely place.. The houses are quite compact and nearly all painted ; most of them white. They are of two stories, built in good taste, and seldom destitute of gardens of considerable size and some beauty. It has never been my good fortune to be in a village that is blessed with greater tranquility - purer air — cleaner and better streets, or houses, yards and fields more neat and pleasurable. The climate is equable. The mercury seldom mounts higher than 85,or descends lower than - 15 degrees.
Castine would be a choice watering-place for the rich merchants of Bangor during the heats of sum80 PORTS COUNT OF CASTINE. mer. There are two churches : one lifting a square tower, and the other a very symmetrical spire into the heavens. The Unitarian Church, inside and out, is a model of correct tasie. These churches, as is the case in all small villages, are antipodal to each other in all respects, but locality. The Bay in front of Castine, which is three-lourths of a mile wide, is deep, and will float close to the town the largest vessels of war. Between the Town and the Light are the remains of three forts, one erected during the last war, which is in a good state of preservation and contains a few cannon within its precincts
- another erected during the old French war — and another erected by the Count of Castine, a French Nobleman, who is supposed to have come to this country in disgrace, and, attracted by the beauty of the situation, to have fixed his abode here. The Indians were numerous about him, and to protect himself against their depredations and any evi] schemes they might machinate against him in case of offence, as also to gain entire sway over them so as to make them subservient to his purposes, he is said to have thrown up these mounds and planted in front rows of palisades. These events must have taken place some centuries since.
Reader, ascend with me now to the central and principal fort on the height of the Peninsula, and take a view of that Panorama which I have so often gazed upon with delightful and sublime emotions, and with which my eye could never grow weary:
GREAT FORT-VIEW FROM ITS RAMPART.
Let me point out to you the different features of the landscape. To the north you trace a line of wild and rugged hills, and the serpentine course of that Prince of Eastern rivers, the mighty Penobscot, coming down from the solitude of unbroken forests where the cry of wild beasts alone is heard. To the East the ocean tides ascend far beyond the point of land on which you stand to join the fresh-water currents that descend from their sources several miles above, and seventeen miles distant is the conical swell of a certain wooded eminence,ever with a veil of blue mist thrown around its sides and heightening its natural charms, known as “BlueHill.' To the South your eye falls upon the sweet village at your feet — the wharfs and ships which bespeak commerce of considerable moment — the bay widening eastward from three-fourths of a mile 10 three miles, and spotted with many fairy islands of every size and shape —some, bare and sea-washed rocks — others, clothed with verdure and enlivened with the bleat of Aocks of sheep — some, producing in abundance varieties of berries -- the rich blackberry and delicious strawberry — others, clothed with a goodly growth of forest.. Among them the seal swims and the porpoise gambols, and upon them in winter the foxes seek their food. Directed seaward your eye will catch in the distance five or six isles, twenty-nine miles off, one behind the other in almost regular succession, the foremost small, but increasing in size to the hindmost, and appearing 82 HEIGHTS OF BROOKVILLE. like a file of tortoises taking up their line of march across the waters of the bay. To the West lies spread out before you the broad bay at the mouth of the Penobscot - Prospect and Belfast along its shores — Long Island far-stretching North and South, and the noble range of the Camden Hills with their rounded summits rising one above another, and, when reflected in golden splendor against an evening sky, presenting a scene of great beauty and one admirably suited to the pencil. The duty of a Cicerone I have now discharged and leave you, my friend, to gaze, admire, and indulge your own reflections. — If you are a lover of fine scenery step into one of the swift sail-boats at the wharf and speed your course to the islands or the heights of Brookville ; you will never repent it. NewEngland cannot furnish more enchanting and magnificent landscapes. Winnipisseogee lake with its more than three hundred isles, as seen from the summit of Red Mountain, hardly equals them.
Castine is a most sequestered spot. It is not upon any of the main roads that traverse the State. It is thirty-two miles South of Bangor and seventeen from Bucksport. Every mile from this latter place towards C*. carries you so far away from the common thoroughfare of travel. If a stranger is in Casa tine, he is there to view the scenery, visit his relations and friends, or accomplish some matter of business. The chief events which serve to enliven the Sabbath stillness of the place are the periodica!
INHABITANTS OF CASTINE. 83 sittings of the Courts and the occasional debarkation of a steamboat party from Bangor. The inhabitants of Castine partake of the cbaracter of their village and climate. There is a gentleness,quiet, and equability about them, that are rarely to be found amidst the bold enterprize and bustle of the East. Commerce built up the place, and this, together with the regular outfit of the fishing-smacks that run to the Great Banks, sustain it in about the same position from year to year. The merchants, some of them, have an assed considerable property. Of farmers there are a few. The soil is generally untractable. The Western parts of the Peninsula are very rocky, yet produce grass enough for sheep. Springs gush out here and there to quench their thirst, and clumps of spruce, birch, and other trees form for them a pleasant shade from the heats of mid-summer.
Castine — a pleasant vision will ever rise to niy mind when thy name is mentioned or occurs to me. Never shall I forget that sacred desk, associated with my earliest efforts in the cause of Christian
ruth and love, where for the first time I felt myself a preacher of the cross and charged with the responsible care of immortal spirits, or that little band that pledged themselves to commemorate a Saviour's love, or the Sabbath School that responded so true ly to the vesper prayer and listened with so much interest to the friendly counsels of their Teachers, and chanted with such harmonious and heavenly joy hymns of praise to the Creator and Father of all.