« VorigeDoorgaan »
camel of burden, a present from the Pasha from forty to fifty dollars for the choicest of Egypt. They have now been in the females, and seventy-five to a hundred for garden five years, never seriously unwell, the males. The three camels shipped, at and have bred five calves, two of which Tunis were in good condition, and did not died. Mr. Mitchell stated that no partic- suffer from their voyage. They conular care was taken of the animals, and he, sumed from eight to twelve pounds of hay with Professor Owen, thought that they and six quarts of oats a day, drinking could be acclimated and bred in the United once in three days from two and a half States.
to three buckets of water. When the At Paris Colonel Wayne met General officers left the United States they parDumas, who had served long in Africa, ticularly desired to visit Persia, but at of whom he obtained much valuable infor- Constantinople they learned the impracmation, and especially from his pamphlet, ticability of such a journey on account of “Cheval de Guerre," upon the acclima- the disturbed state of that country and the tion of the camel in France. Here he lateness of the season. Hence they left adopted the classification of the camel into for Balaklava, in the Crimea, and were two kinds, the Bactrian, or camel with politely received by the British officers on two humps, found in Tartary and North- duty there. From Colonel M'Murdo, in ern Central Asia, and the Arabian, with charge of the land transportation service, one hump, of Persia, Asia Minor, Arabia, they obtained useful information. Under and India. He regards the term drome General Napier, in the expedition against dary, as its derivation indicates, the swift Seinde, he had used about twenty - five courser or racer, in contradistinction to thousand camels, and now had three thouthe camel of burden. It is the intention of sand for the campaign next spring. Their the American government to domesticate average loads, he stated, were about six the Arabian camel and the dromedary, and hundred pounds, which they carry with thus introduce a new animal into the heart ease twenty-five or thirty miles a day. of our continent where there are neither During the expedition against Scinde Gen. navigable rivers nor practicable roads. eral Napier organized a most efficient From Spezia Lieutenant Porter visited corps of one thousand men upon five hunFlorence and Pisa, and found two hundred dred dromedaries, two men to each, sitand fifty camels upon the grand duke's ting back to back, armed with rifles and farm, which number was sufficient to per- sabers. At the scene of operations the form the work of one thousand horses. dromedaries were taught to kneel in They were overworked and supplied with square ; five hundred of the men acted as no food, except what they could glean drivers, the other five were infantry. In among the pine barrens. Neither were case of extremity the square offered a they housed during the winter in this high cover for the whole thousand behind the latitude of 43° 30', where it is severely animals, who were prevented from rising cold, with a climate much more trying by a hobble on their fore legs. From this than Texas. The Tuscans force them to curious barrier the men used their rifles carry seventeen hundred pounds, a weight most effectually. The camel corps could equal to twelve hundred pounds English, be marched seventy miles in twelve hours, and to work from sunrise to sunset. and rendered great service throughout the
In July Colonel Wayne joined the lieu- campaign. General Simpson, in the same tenant at Spezia, and immediately sailed service, had procured five or six for his for Naples via Tunis. At the former personal use, and with them often travplace they purchased their first camel, an eled seventy miles between sunset and ordinary animal, but the Bey of Tunis sunrise. Major Delafield, of West Point, presented them with two good specimens, then on a visit to the Crimea, inquired one a remarkably fine animal. Thence whether General Simpson would not have the expedition visited Malta, Smyrna, and preferred the best English horses to camSalonica, reaching Constantinople in the els ; he replied, “ No! for packing his bag. month of October. At Smyrna they gage on them in light loads, he could move learned that the British government had more quickly and continuously.” The purchased a large number of camels for introduction of this new beast of burden transportation purposes, besides the hiring into the heart of our continent, where of eight thousand more. The prices ranged | there are neither traveled roads por navi
gable streams, we can readily imagine themselves in owning. The Governor of would be of great political and commercial Alexandria was to select the animals; but importance. With such a facility how he deputed the next in office, and this one easily could the roaming tribes of Indians passed the matter to a cavass," or under be checked in their predatory and warring officer, who would make a handsome expeditions, and how admirably would profit out of the operation. After a week's they be calculated for long journeys over delay the dromedaries made their appearwide tracts of desert where food and wa ance; but they were such wretched lookter are scarce.
ing creatures and so diseased that the When the expedition reached Constan- | Americans would not receive them. In tinople in October the officers were con- fact, they were not dromedaries at all, but firmed in their plan of not visiting Persia. | the ill-used common street camel of AlexOur own dragoman, Mr. Brown, at the andria, and Captain Porter communicated Turkish capital, uniting in the same view, to the viceroy the trickery of his suborthey now turned their attention to Egypt. dinates. The imposition was forthwith In the meantime the Turkish government corrected, and six selected, two males and, resolved to present four camels of the four females, out of a lot from the interior. best breed to the United States, and Mr. These were not the far-famed dromeBrown was authorized to order four of the daries of the desert, but the ordinary finest to be found in European Turkey. | “Mount Sinai" breed, used for the After waiting twenty days the animals transportation of goods and passengers did not arrive, and the expedition was across the Isthmus of Suez and short obliged to sail for Alexandria, reaching journeys. They are strong, and will that port on the 22d of November. Major travel fifty miles a day for seven or eight Wayne proceeded forthwith to Cairo, days in succession. The viceroy doubted where he met with unexpected difficulties, whether any of them would stand the the viceroy refusing to allow any more voyage to America ; but he was mistaken, than four camels to be exported. A per as they bore the trarisportation better than sonal call by the party upon his highness the burden camels of Asia Minor. induced him to increase the number to The dromedaries on board the convoy fourteen ; four only could be purchased sailed for Smyrna on the 22d of Janby the time when the vessel was to sail. uary, with three natives of the country,
The four dromedaries were purchased to help take care of the animals. Captain by Colonel Wayne in Cairo; but, upon | Porter thinks that a Bedouin or Egyptian their arrival at Alexandria, they were cannot be taught much beyond what they stopped at the Custom House, and Lieu- already know; in his opinion an intellitenant Porter treated with so much disre. gent Yankee in a short time will know spect that he complained to the American more about the treatment of camels than consul, Mr. De Leon, when amende hon- they do. During his voyage not a single orable was promptly made, his highness, accident happened to an animal ynder the the Viceroy of Egypt, at the same time charge of his sailors; but the Egyptians informing him that he intended to present were so treacherous and careless that the United States government with six of something wrong occurred with theirs the his finest dromedaries. He owned a large whole time. number, and at that moment was engaged As soon as the dromedaries reached the in drilling a dromedary corps on the Per- vessel they were thoroughly cleaned with sian system, each to carry two men, soap and water, a wine glass of powdered armed with carbines. In the meantime sulphur administered in their drink for Mr. Heap, the draughtsman of the deputa- three days, and every suspicious looking tion, was dispatched to Smyrna to pur- spot on the bodies rubbed with sulphur chase what camels were required for the and olive oil. At three o'clock each was vessel to leave that port by March the fed a gallon of oats, or oats and peas, first on her return to the United States. their racks filled with hay, each eating on
Captain Porter was greatly gratified an average daily ten pounds in good with the promise of receiving six drome- weather. Before feeding they were aldaries from the viceroy's own stock, and lowed three gallons of water, and great expected the very best blood of Omar
was necessary not to increase this Nubia, such as Eastern potentates pride / allowance except in very warm weather. .
If permitted they would drink twenty gal-camel car attached to it. The animals lons. Every morning the animals were could not be hoisted on board with slings, curried, their long hair combed with as is the case in shipping horses, their wooden combs, and their leg joints and weight being too heavy, some reaching feet rubbed by hard brushes.
two thousand pounds, and then they cerOn the 29th of January the convoy an- tainly would injure themselves in strugchored in Smyrna. Mr. Heap having pur- gling to get free. In no instance would chased all the camels required, and com- they go into the boat willingly. The pletely equipped with saddles, bridles, and tackle was hooked on to the harness, and coverings, the men commenced taking the men with a steady pull soon forced them on board in a few days. This was a them on board safely, when they were careful and important process, a very hoisted to the deck of the vessel without troublesome business. For the purpose fright or danger. See the accompanying of shipping the camels safely a boat or sketch taken on the spot. scow had been expressly made, capable Thirty camels were shipped in this of bearing six thousand pounds, with a way, not one having received a bruise of
any kind. Previous to leaving the United hazardous to purchase camels about cities, States the “Supply” had been admirably particularly if they have been used in a fitted to transport the animals. Mr. caravan. Such are almost always disHeap had procured a lot of very good eased. camels at Smyrna, all sound, not one In the future transportation of camels turning out badly; but he had to send Captain Porter advises the purchase of some distance into the interior for them. young ones, one or two years old ; and the Konich, in Asia Minor, is one of the most former he had on board, the heartiest of the famous camel stations, and the great stop- whole lot, and required very little attention. ping place for caravans between Smyrna His vessel could carry ninety of this size, and Persia, about seven hundred miles but forty only of their mothers. Camels from the former place, and about twenty- one or two years old are about the size of five days' travel camel pace. No matter a twelve month heifer, and would pack how fine the animal looks, it is always I close without injury from their weight.
In Texas, such could be trained for burden | like horses, subject to a “stampede." If or riding camels, and form a corps of camels should be imported one year old, mounted dromedaries, sufficient to expel in two more they could be used with light any hostile Indians from the country. On burdens and fit to be trained for a drometheir swiftest horses such foes could not dary with a rider. This seems to be a escape the enduring, steady pace of the better plan of introducing them into the “ship of the desert,” which will accomp- United States than the slower process of lish one hundred miles in a single day. breeding. Before leaving Smyrna, the Dromedaries will go through all kinds of officers took on board two Turkish sadwoods and weather, wading through muddlers, one of whom was a professed camel where a horse would be stalled. They M. D. These native doctors are queer felrequire but little harness and no shoeing, lows. At Cairo one of them boiled a young and meeting an enemy will lie down, form- sheep in molasses, and forced the drome. ing a rampart with their bodies, and not, dary to swallow this dose, half scalding,
for some ordinary complaint. Another Nature has made a wise provision for prescribed a piece of cheese to cure a this species, in common with all camels, slight cold ; and an ounce of tea with five for as soon as the warm weather comgrains of gunpowder for a camel with mences, their thick fur or wool falls off swollen legs. Cauterizing with a hot iron entirely. Before winter arrives, however, is a favorite remedy, and there is scarcely the coat is on again, full and luxuriant, an animal that does not bear some such and apparently sufficient to protect them marks. On one occasion, when a camel against the severest cold. was not able to rise up, a native advised | At Smyrna four fine Loks were pur. Captain Porter to pour boiling pitch over chased, which had been trained as Pehher loins, and he was sure she would rise. levans, or Wrestlers. Among the Turks The captain did not doubt the quick effi- | wrestling matches between camels is a cacy of this application, but tried a more favorite amusement. Many gentlemen simple remedy; and, rubbing the legs with keep them for no other purpose; and to hard brushes, it rose instantly.
amuse his wife one person in Smyrna had The prices of camels vary from fifteen twenty at once. When quite young, the to one thousand dollars. At the time of this camels are trained to wrestling. They expedition their value was much enhanced seem to enjoy much pleasure in the conby the demand for the Crimean war. But test, exhibiting great dexterity while in war or peace the Frank, whether he throwing each other. There was a young deals with Mohammedan, Jew, or Christian camel on board, only a month old, and, in the East, must calculate to pay well for having been born under the American flag, his alienage.
he was named “ Uncle Sam," and one of Among the animals purchased were two the Turks amused himself on the voyage remarkably handsome ones, a Nomaniah, by making a “ Pehlevan" of him. When from Omar, and the other a Sennar, of only six weeks old he was more than a Nubia. The former is supposed to be the match for his teacher, and often hurt the swiftest and the most enduring, and its sailors by throwing them down suddenly easy motion is owing to moving its hind on deck. and fore legs, on opposite sides, at the The female camel produces her young same time. A rolling motion character- | once in twelve months; at four years he izes the Becharieh dromedary; and this is loaded for all purposes; when five, he species is taught to carry its head very is in full vigor, continuing so until nine. high, which gives them a very handsome From this period to thirteen he begins to appearance. Captain Porter recommends fail, and at seventeen he is old. If not the Becharieh as best adapted for our overdriven the camel will march loaded climate. No burden camels were obtained from sunrise to sunset, stretching his neck in Egypt ; still he thinks favorably of im- from side to side along the road, gathering porting such from that country. They are herbage, and in this way will travel from generally very large, and will carry six thirty to forty miles a day. It is neceshundred English pounds on a journey, and sary to give him rest every sixth day. for short distances, one thousand pounds. The camel is the most gentle and subThe best are from the villages of Lower missive of all animals, and so patient as to Egypt, and worth from thirty-five to seven travel until completely exhausted; then ty-five dollars, not including the pay to the falling, never to rise again. Its condition dragoman and peasants, which increases can always be known by the size of the the price to almost double the original cost. hump, which is a greasy substance, not un
Mr. Heap succeeded in purchasing two like a cow's udder. The re-absorption of very fine Bactrian males; one had been this body compensates for the want of food, brought from Persia, and the other picked and during a long march or a famine it up near Samos; they were hardy animals, gradually diminishes and disappears. and gave very little trouble on board the On the 14th of February, the expedition ship; one of them was ten feet long and sailed direct for the United States, and seven feet five inches high, and nine feet reached the mouth of the Mississippi on nine inches around the body, including his the 10th of May, where the camels were fore hump. Part of the vessel's deck all safely transferred to the charge of had to be cut away to accommodate the Major Wayne. Thence he proceeded height of one of these Bactrians.
with them by slow daily journeys to San