Text: Edgar Allan Poe (ed. J. A. Harrison), “Review of Sketches of History, Life, and Manners in the West,” The Complete Works of Edgar Allan PoeVol. VIII: Literary Criticism - part 01 (1902), pp. 108-109


[page 108:]


[Southern Literary Messenger, December, 1835.]

MR. HALL has made himself extensively known by his Tales and Legends as well as by his labors in the editorship of the Western Monthly Magazine. From his long residence in the West, and from his undoubted abilities as a writer, we should suppose he would be excellently qualified to write precisely such a book as he has written. His object in the present publication seems to be not so much the furnishing of topographical or statistical details, as the sketching of character and life in the West, prior to the close of the late war. To those who are at all acquainted [[with Mr. Hall, or]] with Mr. Hall’s writings, it is superfluous to say that the book is well written. Wild romance and exciting adventure form its staple.

The policy of our government in regard to the Aborigines is detailed in the commencement of the first volume — the latter portion is occupied with the manners and customs of the French in the great valley of the Mississippi, and with the adventures of the white settlers on the Ohio. The second volume is more varied, and, we think, by far more interesting. It treats, among other things, of Burr’s conspiracy — of the difficulties experienced in Mississippi navigation, and of the various military operations carried on in the wilderness of the North West. An Appendix, at the end of the book, embraces some papers relative to the first settlement of Kentucky — none of which have [page 109:] hitherto been published. We confidently recommend to our readers the Western Sketches of Mr. Hall, in the full anticipation of their finding in the book a fund both of information and amusement.





[S:1 - JAHCW, 1902] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Complete Works of Edgar Allan Poe (J. A. Harrison) (Review of Sketches of History, Life, and Manners in the West)