Seven years ago, on the first of January last—that being a holiday, and the writer being then a stranger with few social greetings to exchange in New York—he inquired his way into the ill-furnished, chilly, forlorn-looking attic printing-office in which William T. Porter, in company with another very young man, who soon after abandoned the enterprise, had just issued the “Spirit of the Times,” the first weekly journal devoted entirely to sporting intelligence ever attempted in this country. It was a moderate-sized sheet of indifferent paper, with an atrocious wood-cut for the head—about as uncomely a specimen of the ‘fine arts’ as our “native talent” has produced. The paper was about in proportion; for neither of its conductors had fairly attained his majority, and each was destitute of the experience so necessary in such an enterprise, and of the funds and extensive acquaintance which were still more necessary to its success. But one of them possessed a persevering spirit and an ardent enthusiasm for the pursuit to which he had devoted himself.And, consequently, the Spirit of the Times still exists and flourishes, under the proprietorship of its originator and founder, Colonel Porter. For this paper, our hero, during his short stay in the office, composed a multitude of articles and paragraphs, most of them short and unimportant. As a specimen of his style at this period, I copy from the “Spirit” of May 5th, 1832, the following epistle, which was considered extremely funny in those innocent days:
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