in to New Salem.
This once sprightly and thriving village is no longer in existence.
Not a building, scarcely a stone, is left to mark the place where it once stood.
To reach it now the traveller must ascend a bluff a hundred feet above the general level of the surrounding country.
The brow of the ridge, two hundred and fifty feet broad where it overlooks the river, widens gradually as it extends westwardly to the forest and ultimately to broad pastures.
Skirting the base of the bluff is the Sangamon river
, which, coming around a sudden bend from the south-east, strikes the rocky hill and is turned abruptly north.
Here is an old mill, driven by water-power, and reaching across the river is the mill-dam on which Offut's vessel hung stranded in April, 1831.
As the river rolled her turbid waters over the dam, plunging them into the whirl and eddy beneath, the roar of waters, like low, continuous, distant thunder, could be distinctly heard through the village day and night.
The country in almost every direction is diversified by alternate stretches of hills and level lands, with streams between each struggling to reach the river.
The hills are bearded with timber-oak, hickory, walnut, ash, and elm. Below them are stretches of rich alluvial bottom land, and the eye ranges over a vast expanse of foliage, the monotony of which is relieved by the alternating swells and depressions of the landscape.
Between peak and peak, through its bed of limestone, sand, and clay, sometimes kissing the feet of one bluff and then