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"There is a land of beauty bright,
The clime of love, the home of light,
If the reader is a stranger to the New England village and its picturesque scenery, it will be a difficult task to strengthen the mental eye, though aided by a vivid imagination, to look upon its lofty mountains, clothed with the richest verdure, which have nursed the gigantic oak and towering pine, amid whose branches the forked lightnings have held their midnight dance, while the deep-toned thunder strove in vain to chant the requiem of centuries past; and against whose impregnable sides the frenzied whirlwinds have dashed in quick succession the electric balls, unextinguished by the rolling torrents falling from cleft to cleft, until the shattered crag loses its strong hold, and the unimpeded element finds a safe deposit in the bosom of some deep ravine, where it leaves its maddened roar, and mingles with the purling stream or babbling brook. There is beauty, as well as sublimity, mingled with moun
The eye cannot rest with indifference upon the distant east, while the King of day raises his golden lid, and with his irradiating lashes forming the glorious network
of the purple morn, causing the valleys to unfold their dewy pearls.
In one of these deep ravines on the banks of the beautiful“ Roselle,"stood a plain white cottage, unadorned by ancient or modern architecture. The weeping willow and a spreading elm furnished an ample shade, while the blooming honeysuckle and luxuriant woodbine formed a floral arch over the doorway of Captain De Van's hospitable dwelling. This gentleman was of the Puritan race, with stereotyped principles, and a native of Connecticut—was reared among the Blue Laws of that state, and was married in early life to a Miss Jane Williams, after which he moved to the state of Vermont, and settled with his young wife near the spot above described, where they, by their industry and economy, acquired in a few years a comfortable competency.
Mrs. De Van was indeed the helpmate of her husband. Her amiable character rendered her the favorite of the neighborhood. She often, in administering to the wants of others, found that it was more blessed to give than receive ; their house was the house of prayer,-morning and evening the old family Bible lay open upon the stand. This volume was not only sacred to Mr. De Van as the word of God, but because it was a precious gift from his venerable father. As he knelt with his wife and children around the family altar, with bowed head, in low and solemn tones he prayed to Almighty God for strength and wisdom, to train up his children in the fear and admonition of the Lord. Year after year passed on, and the sacred fire on that family altar burned bright and clear.
They met from Sabbath to Sabbath, and mingled their unostentatious devotions with those whose delight it is to bring unto God the acceptable offering of a broken and contrite heart. These humble villagers worshipped not God by proxy, they sang with solemn melody
“My soul shall pray for Zion still,
There God my Saviour reigns." The villagers of Roselle, by their united efforts, had erected a neat and commodious sanctuary in a sequestered part of their village, though for several years they were obliged to use this as a school-room. The ample play-grounds and the neighboring grove in the rear, made it not an unfit place for the development of the intellect. A long range of the Green Mountains were in full view, and lofty hills on either hand could be seen