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GIFT OF 




VIEWS 



WHITE MOUNTAINS. 



WITH DESCRIPTIONS 
BY 

M. F. SWEETSER. 
\ 



PORTLAND : 

CHISHOLM BROTHERS. 
1879. 



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1879, 

BY HUGH J. CHISHOLM, 
In the Office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington. 



Electrotyped and Printed 

By Rand, Avery, &> Company, 

//7 Franklin Street, 

Boston. 




CONTENTS. 

THE FRANKENSTEIN TRESTLE. 

THE OLD WILLEY HOUSE. 

THE WILLEY-BROOK BRIDGE. 

RAILWAY CUT, AT THE GATE OF THE NOTCH. 

THE CRAWFORD HOUSE, FROM ELEPHANT'S HEAD. 

THE FABYAN HOUSE. 

THE PRESIDENTIAL RANGE, CAPPED WITH SNOW. 

JACOB'S LADDER, MOUNT-WASHINGTON RAILWAY. 

LIZZIE BOURNE'S MONUMENT, AND SUMMIT HOUSE. 

THE GLEN HOUSE. 

THE FRANCONIA NOTCH, ECHO LAKE, AND THE PROFILE HOUSE. 

THE PROFILE, OR OLD MAN OF THE MOUNTAIN. 



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THE FRANKENSTEIN TRESTLE. 




THE OLD WILLEY HOUSE. 




Mt. Willard. 



THE WILLEY-BROOK BRIDGE. 



Mfc Webster. 




THE GREAT CUT, WHITE-MOUNTAIN NOTCH. 




Mt. Willard Range Cherry Mt. 

THE CRAWFORD HOUSE, FROM ELEPHANT'S HEAD. 




THE FABYAN HOUSE. 




THE PRESIDENTIAL RANGE, CAPPED WITH SNOW. 




LIZZIE BOURNE'S MONUMENT, ON MT. WASHINGTON. 




FRANCONIA NOTCH AND PROFILE HOUSE. 




THE FRANKENSTEIN TRESTLE. 

HE Frankenstein Cliff is the perpendicular rocky face 
of the great spur which makes out from Mount Nancy 
towards the Saco Valley, between the glens which shel- 
ter the Arethusa Falls and Ripley's Falls. As the train hurries 
northward, beyond Bemis Station, the attention is divided be- 
tween the sight of this fine piece of rock-architecture and a 
famous view of the more distant and more imposing Mount 
Washington, at the head of the desolate and unvisited valley of 
the Mount-Washington River. But, before reaching the cliff, 
the railroad must cross a deep dry ravine ; and here the power 
of mechanical genius has manifested itself in a notable degree. 
The track is carried over the gulf on the celebrated Franken- 
stein Trestle, which is 498 feet long, and 75 feet above the 
rocks of the glen. The slender iron supports are firmly based 
on foundations of masonry, and toward the top seem more like 
the meshes of a spider-web than the upholding piers of a con- 
tinental route. As the trains pass over the trestle, scores of 
heads emerge from the car-windows, looking down upon the 
graceful interfacings of the iron-work below, and out over the 
romantic glen of the Saco, inwalled by formidable mountains. 




THE OLD WILLEY HOUSE. 

JOON after 1770 the White-Mountain Notch was dis- 
covered by a wandering hunter, and a road was con- 
structed through it by the authority of the State. The 
main route of travel between the rich farming district of Coos 
and the sea-coast lay through this pass, and was traversed by 
thousands of heavy freight- wagons every year, carrying down 
the form-produce from above, and returning with supplies. In 
1 793 the building now known as the Old Willey House was 
erected, to serve as an inn for the accommodation of travellers 
and teamsters on this favorite route. More than thirty years 
later, Mr. Samuel Willey, jun., moved into the house with his 
family, and lived there comfortably enough until the next sum- 
mer. In June, 1826, they were startled by a slide of rock and 
earth, which descended from the mountain, and ran over the 
road within sight of their windows. 

Several weeks of drought ensued, baking the soil of the ridge 
to powder, and destroying the cohesive vitality of the herbage. 
Then came the storm, filling the Notch with roaring floods, illu- 
minating the dread August night with sheets of lightning, and 
causing the hills to tremble with the crash of thunder-peals and 
the long roll of the falling deluge. It is supposed that the 
rapid rise of the Saco menaced the house during the night, and 



The Old Willey House. 

forced the family to take refuge high up on the rugged slope 
of Mount Willey, whence they were unable to escape in time, 
when the mountain itself began to give way, and the great slide 
swept down upon and over them. 

A traveller who forced his way through the ruins which en- 
cumbered the Notch, soon afterwards, found the Willey House 
deserted, with the open Bible lying upon the table, and the 
beds disordered as if left for a hasty flight. The alarm was 
given in Conway, and relatives of the family quickly came up to 
search for their missing kinspeople. They soon found the body 
of a man-servant, David Allen, near a pile of earth and broken 
timbers, with his clinched hands full of small limbs of trees 
and sticks. The remains of Mr. and Mrs. W T illey were recovered 
soon aftenvards, terribly bruised, and covered with stones and 
earth ; and on the next day the bodies of two of the Willey 
children and another hired man were found. Three of the 
children were buried beyond all possibility of recovery. The 
horses in the stable were killed ; but the cattle escaped with 
slight bruises : and the family dog, contused and wounded, 
appeared at North Conway immediately after the storm, and 
vainly endeavored to summon assistance ; after which he disap- 
peared, and was seen no more. 




THE WILLEY-BROOK BRIDGE. 

]OON after the northward-bound train passes the white 
walls of the Willey House, seen far below in the valley 
of the Saco, it reaches the ravine of the Willey Brook, 
a short stream which rises in the gorges of Mount Willard, and 
descends rapidly to the Saco. The track is carried across the 
narrow chasm on a lattice girder bridge of iron, one hundred 
and forty feet long and eighty-five feet high, and a continuous 
wooden trestle of similar length. Above it tower the purple 
cliffs of Mount Willard, crowned with myriads of harebells, and 
seamed by deep and marvellous flumes. 

As the train sweeps around the rocky promontories beyond, 
a succession of charming and picturesque views is unfolded, 
including the profound depressions of the Saco Valley, reach- 
ing away to the far southern hill's ; the white veils of the Silver 
Cascade and the Flume Cascade, adorning the opposite moun- 
tains with their silvery shimmer ; and the black waters of the 
Dismal Pool, silently brooding in the depths of the pass. This 
wide variety of scenery offers objects to interest every traveller, 
and calls forth continual exclamations of delight. The dark 
majesty of the overhanging mountains, in itself almost terrify- 
ing, is contrasted with the feminine beauty of the cascades and 
the wavy grace of a sea of verdure, stimulating the most pleas- 
ing and satisfactory emotions in the hearts of all beholders. 




THE GREAT CUT, CRAWFORD NOTCH. 

'HER routes were content to go around the moun- 
tains ; but the Portland and Ogdensburg Railroad 
hewed its way through them. Portland deemed it 
important that she should have a direct freight-line from the 
granaries of the West to her island- strewn harbor, and with her 
municipal bonds hired many hundreds of mercenaries, and sent 
them to the mountain-region to clear and level the way. The 
Forest City made war upon the forest. 

At last the army of wood choppers and blasters and graders 
were brought to a halt before the vast cliffs of Mount Willard, 
the only remaining obstacle between them and the Connecticut- 
River watershed. The attack begun at once, and for weeks 
the narrow pass resounded with the roar of loud explosions, as 
the blasting operations advanced farther and farther into the 
live rock. Showers of fragments shot up into the air, falling 
heavily into the stream of the Saco, and crushing the harebells 
along the slopes of the mountain. And then there came a day 
of triumph when the last ledges gave way ; and the trains swept 
through a deep and level trench, curving between high walls of 
rugged rock. 

Far below, as the cars emerge from the cut, the black waters 
of Dismal Pool are seen on the sunken floor of the Notch, sur- 
rounded by dense thickets, and dimly reflecting the proud peaks 
and ponderous ridges which tower above it. Avernus itself was 
not more dark, more sombre, more mournful. 




THE CRAWFORD HOUSE, FROM ELE- 
PHANT'S HEAD. 

(COKING to the northward from the high rock of Ele- 
phant's Head, this fair scene breaks upon the view. 
In the foreground is the clear mirror of Saco Lake, 
the source of one of the chief rivers of New England, whose 
waters ripple away through the Gate of the Notch at our feet. 
The bright walls of the Crawford House rise beyond, over well- 
kept lawns and amid the most charming surroundings, enjoying 
the cool air of an elevation of nineteen hundred feet above the 
sea, and perfumed by the fragrance of the far-reaching forests. 
This is one of the most famous and luxurious of the mountain- 
hotels, and accommodates over three hundred guests at one 
time. The pretty little station of the Portland and Ogdensburg 
Railroad, in front of the house, is the debarkation- point of 
many thousands of tourists every summer. Two miles distant, 
by an easy carriage-road, is the top of Mount Willard, with its 
magnificent view ; and about nine miles distant, over the famous 
old bridle-path which crosses a line of lofty mountains, is the 
summit of Mount Washington. The wonderful cascades in the 
Notch Arethusa, Ripley's, Silver, and Flume are accessible 
from this point ; and close to the house are the forest-hidden 
beauties of Beecher's and Gibbs's Falls, and the artificially en- 
larged lake with its boats and piers, and the shores adorned 
with landscape gardening. 




THE FABYAN HOUSE. 

)N 1792 Capt. Eleazar Rosebrook, a Massachusetts 
veteran of the Revolutionary war, built a farm-house 
and mill near the ancient mound of the Giant's 
Grave ; and twenty-five years later he bequeathed the estate 
to his grandson Ethan Allen Crawford, the giant of the hills, 
whose grave and monument are now to be seen hard by. 
Ethan was a famous guide and hunter, and often entertained 
travellers at his house, and led them to the top of Mount 
Washington. From 1803 to 1819 he kept an inn at this point; 
but the house was burned, and two others quickly met the same 
fate. Somewhat later, Horace Fabyan erected here the largest 
hotel in the White Mountains, containing a hundred rooms ; 
but this also was swept away by fire twenty-five years ago. 

The present Fabyan House is less than ten years old, and 
accommodates five hundred guests. The Portland and Ogdens- 
burgh Railroad, and the Boston, Concord, and Montreal Railroad, 
form a junction in front of its long front, and make communi- 
cation easy to all parts of the mountains, to the adjacent Twin- 
Mountain and Crawford Houses, and to the summit of Mount 
Washington (about ten miles distant by rail). The view of 
the Presidential Range from the Fabyan House is full of 
grandeur and impressiveness ; for the entire line of peaks 
appears in panoramic array, closing in the eastern horizon with 
a stately wall of mountains. 




THE WHITE-MOUNTAIN RANGE, 
CAPPED WITH SNOW. 

JHE winter scenery of the New- Hampshire highlands 
has a wild Alpine beauty which merits the admiration 
of all lovers of Nature, and calls forth the attention 
of increasing numbers of tourists every year. The Fabyan 
Cottage is now frequently visited by mid-winter travellers, 
who find a new and unexpected charm in the metamorphosed 
mountains and streams, the snow-clad peaks, and the glacial 
ravines. Many are they who ascend Mount Washington at 
that season to visit the signal-officers upon the summit, and 
they report that the climb is easier then than in the heated 
days of summer. Others have traversed Tuckerman's Ravine 
when its bed was filled with compact ice, and colossal icicles 
draped all the adjacent cliffs. 

The view in our heliotype was taken from the Ammonoosuc 
Valley, between the Fabyan House and the base of Mount 
Washington, and shows the great peaks to the eastward, clad 
in their shining robes of snow, and glistening in the bright 
winter sunlight. The line where the forest ceases is clearly 
perceived; and above it rises the ghostly pallor of the sub- 
Alpine and Alpine regions, almost blending with the pale blue 
sky. 




JACOB'S LADDER, MOUNT-WASHING- 
TON RAILWAY. 

]N 1858 Sylvester Marsh of Littleton secured a charter 
for building a railroad of new and marvellous form 
up the slopes of Mount Washington ; and eight years 
later, after overcoming an immense amount of prejudice and 
derision, he began the construction of the line. In 1 869 the 
work was finished, and the quaint little locomotives reached 
the top of the mountain ; the track and rolling-stock having 
cost $150,000. Since that time many improvements have been 
added, tending to increase the strength and safety of the road ; 
and thousands of trains have ascended the mountain, carrying 
all their passengers in perfect safety. The track is over three 
miles long, with an average grade of 1,300 feet to the mile, and 
a maximum grade of 1,980 feet to the mile. The ascent takes 
an hour and a half, and is broken by halts at the four water- 
tanks en route. The small but very powerful locomotives are 
attached to the lower end of the trains, and push the cars 
before them ; or, in descending, steadily retard their advance. 
There is a central rail fitted with cogs, into which plays a heavy 
cog-wheel attached to the engine ; and this appliance is supple- 
mented by several independent systems of brakes. 



Jacob 's Ladder, Mount - Washington Railway. 

After leaving the forests of the Ammonoosuc Valley, the train 
ascends through dwindling sub- Alpine thickets, and broad and 
magnificent views open out to the west and north-west over 
deep glens and countless peaks, extending far into Vermont. 
Jacob's Ladder is a massive and firmly-bolted trestle, 5,468 feet 
above the sea, and about three hundred feet long, with a height 
of nearly thirty feet above the rocks, and an ascent of one foot 
in each yard of advance. The title of this section is derived 
from the adjacent locality on the old Fabyan Path, where the 
steepest shoulder of the mountain was surmounted by a rude 
stairway cut in the rock for the horses' feet. Here the vegeta- 
tion of Labrador is seen, reindeer-moss and saxifrage peeping 
up amid angular fragments of schist and granite, and over- 
spreading the desolate ruins with rare and delicate lichens. 
The air which breaks over the mountain's brow, and sweeps up 
from the dark depths of the Gulf of Mexico alongside, is filled 
with arctic chill ; and the blazing heats of the July lowlands are 
replaced by a temperature which seems borrowed from the 
shores of Baffin's Bay. 

Wider and wider grows the horizon, and fresh legions of far- 
away peaks rise on every side, until the view reaches the gray 
Adirondacks, beyond Lake Champlain. 




LIZZIE BOURNE'S MONUMENT. 

|FTER the train on the Mount-Washington Railway has 
climbed upward over Jacob's Ladder, and is moving 
towards the summit of the mountain on easier grades, 
it passes on the right a rude pyramidal cairn, from which a plain 
inscribed tablet projects. This pile of weather-worn fragments 
of rock marks the place where Miss Lizzie Bourne breathed out 
her last breath into the deadly chill of a night -storm. 

It was on a .bright September afternoon, in 1855, tna * tne 
young lady, accompanied by her uncle and his daughter, saun- 
tered up the road leading from the Glen House toward the top 
of the mountain. Upon reaching the Half-way House the 
party resolved to ascend farther, hoping to reach the summit 
before night-fall. But they had not gone far before a dense 
frost-cloud settled down over the way, and almost congealed 
their blood with its penetrating chill. Appalled by this event, 
and stricken with panic, they soon lost the path, and spent long 
and weary hours in vague roaming over the sharp ledges, vainly 
endeavoring to reach their goal above. At last Miss Bourne's 
strength left her, and she sank down upon the rocks, where, at 
ten o'clock that night, she expired. All night long the two sur- 
vivors watched by her side ; and at dawn they found that they 
were within thirty rods of the Summit House, which had been 
fatally veiled from their eyes by the cold mists of the preceding 
afternoon. 




THE GLEN HOUSE. 

[HIS great palace of the wild woods is one of the chief 
resorts in the New-Hampshire highlands, and is es- 
pecially favored by the first families of Boston and 
Eastern Massachusetts. In front, across the narrow glen of 
the Peabody Brook, rise the five loftiest peaks of the White 
Mountains, Mount Washington (6,293 feet high) on the left, 
with the hotel on the distant crest almost hidden by nearer 
shoulders and foot-hills; Mount Clay (5,553 feet), lifting its 
rugged humps over the head of the Great Gulf; Mount Jeffer- 
son (5,714 feet), with a ponderous and well-defined peak, 
more to the right; the shapely spire of Mount Adams (5,794 
feet), with its graceful pyramidal shape ; and the swelling dome 
of Mount Madison (5,365 feet), closing the line on the right. 
Such are the elements of the front view, which has no equal in 
all this region. At the rear of the hotel rise the densely-wooded 
heights of the Carter and Wild-Cat ranges, and the air is per- 
fumed with the fragrance of their unbroken forests. 

The Glen House is 1,632 feet above the sea, and enjoys a 
delicious temperature during the summer and early autumn. 
The most comfortable and secure of Concord stages and 
mountain-wagons connect it with Glen Station, fifteen and a 
half miles south, and about five miles from North Conway; 
with Gorham, eight miles north, on the Grand Trunk Railway ; 
and with the summit of Mount Washington, eight miles away. 




THE FRANCONIA NOTCH AND PRO- 
FILE HOUSE. 

[HE most beautiful view of the great western pass is 
obtained from over Echo I^ake, with the shining 
surface of the lake itself in the immediate foreground, 
and the green sea of verdure stretching away to the southward, 
wave on wave, to where the slopes of the mountains seem to 
interlace with each other in the distance. In the midst of this 
rich and exuberant forest appears the Profile House, white and 
comely, suggesting the material triumphs of civilization which 
are there concentrated in the heart of the hills. 

The White-Mountain Notch has a worn and ancient expres- 
sion, and an appearance of decadence and weariness, as if 
countless convulsions had shaken and swept over it, leaving 
their autographs in long bare slides, heaps of ruin, burnt 
forests, and crumbling cliffs. But the Franconia Notch seems 
ever fresh and young, in perennial verdure clad, and showing 
its rocky foundations only in such grand and picturesque forms 
as Eagle Cliff and the Profile. The wide sweep of foliage is 
scarcely broken, save by the dimpling water-gems of the lake- 
lets about the Profile House, which confer upon the wilderness 
a high adornment of landscape beauty. 




THE PROFILE; FRANCONIA NOTCH. 

|OT far from the Profile House, at a point on the road 
where a guide-board directs the attention upward to 
the right, a wonderful view is afforded of a colossal 
human profile projecting from the mountain-side over a thou- 
sand feet above. It is like the face of an old man weary with 
weight of centuries, melancholy and haggard, and with an air 
of faithful and undaunted expectancy. From other points near 
by the expression changes into various less noble forms, includ- 
ing a remarkable semblance of a toothless old woman. No 
other phenomenon of the kind in the world is so perfect in its 
imitation, and myriads upon myriads of travellers have come 
hither to study these marvellous outlines since the days when 
the Indian tribes brought their rude sacrifices to the mountain's 
base. The choice hour for visiting the view-point is in the 
latter part of a summer's afternoon, when the sun has sunk 
behind the ridge, and forms a background of brilliant sky for 
the face to stand out before. 

The Profile is about forty feet high, and is composed of three 
projecting ledges of coarse granite, near the top of Cannon 
Mountain. The rock is rapidly decomposing, and competent 
observers have predicted that the resemblance to a human face 
will ere long totally disappear. But its memory will be pre- 
served for centuries in the beautiful descriptions of Hawthorne 
and Starr King, and in numberless pictures. 



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