project, of Jackson
's inroads into Florida
, and the subsequent cession of that province to the United States
, of the first meeting of Congress in the Capital
, of the passage of the Missouri Compromise
During the progress of the various commercial treaties with the States of Europe
, which were negotiated after the conclusion of the general peace
, the whole theory, practice, and history of commercial intercourse, were amply discussed in Congress and the newspapers; and the mind of Horace, even in his ninth year, was mature enough to take some interest in the subject, and derive some impressions from its discussion.
The Farmer's Cabinet
, which brought all these and countless other ideas and events to bear on the education of the boy, is now one of the thousand papers with which the Tribune
Horace scoured the country for books.
Books were books in that remote and secluded region; and when he had exhausted the collections of the neighbors, he carried the search into the neighboring towns.
I am assured that there was not one readable book within seven miles of his father's house, which Horace did not borrow and read during his residence in Amherst
He was never without a book.
As soon, says one of his sisters, as he was dressed in the morning, he flew to his book.
He read every minute of the day which he could snatch from his studies at school, and on the farm.
He would be so absorbed in his reading, that when his parents required his services, it was like rousing a heavy sleeper from his deepest sleep, to awaken Horace to a sense of things around him and an apprehension of the duty required of him. And even then he clung to his book.
He would go reading to the cellar and the cider-barrel, reading to the wood-pile, reading to the garden, reading to the neighbors; and pocketing his book only long enough to perform his errand, he would fall to reading again the instant his mind and his hands were at liberty.
He kept in a secure place an ample supply of pine knots, and as soon as it was dark he would light one of these cheap and brilliant illuminators, put it on the back-log in the spacious fire-place, pile up his school books and his reading books on the floor, lie down on his back on the hearth, with his head to the fire and his feet coiled away out of the reach of stumblers; and there he would lie and read all through the long winter evenings, silent, motionless, dead