In 1806, Thomas Ashe, a British author, came to America to see and explore the western frontier. Using the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers as his main route, he traveled through the country keeping records of his thoughts and observations in a series of letters...to himself. Upon his return to England, he published these letters in three different volumes and they were made available for sale in 1808. These volumes have been consolidated into this book. The work of Mr. Ashe gives the reader a fascinating picture of early America as seen through the eyes of this obviously loyal Briton. In these letters he depicts the way things were and how life was lived west of the Appalachian Mountains, down the Ohio, the Mississippi and all the way to New Orleans. This book is part of the Historical Collection of Badgley Publishing Company and has been transcribed from the original. The original contents have been edited and corrections have been made to original printing, spelling and grammatical errors when not in conflict with the author's intent to portray a particular event or interaction. Annotations have been made and additional contents have been added by Badgley Publishing Company in order to clarify certain historical events or interactions and to enhance the author's content. Fonts have been changed from the original printing to make the book easier to read. Photos and illustrations from the original have been cleaned up, enhanced and enlarged for better viewing. Additional illustrations and photos have been added by Badgley Publishing Company.
Although agreement is general that Ashe usually stretched the truth in the direction of the vicious and spiteful, authorities also laud his account as being highly readable and interesting. His chief interest was in archaeological remains, but he takes to task the men of America, including references to some Missourians as having "stupid insensibility." He did think the women of America far superior to any he had encountered in Europe. He found the climate in New Orleans so disagreeable that he states that "an average of nine strangers die out of ten shortly after their arrival." Ashe liked the Ohio and Mississippi Valleys, and his description of them is generally credible.