« PreviousContinue »
LETTERS ON SOUTH AMERICA.
W. P. R. to GENERAL MILLER.
Preparations to leave Goya—The Goya Squire-His Daughters Doña Rosita—The Young Lover, Duval—The Old Lover, Mora.
London, 1842. We now hastened, in every way we could, the finale of our Corrientes and Goya adventures, Campbell using double exertions to bring all our outstanding contracts to a close. We succeeded so well that towards the end of August we found we had as much produce at Goya and Corrientes as would load our own vessel, the San José, as well as our friend Don Agustin Saenz's polacca, which we chartered for the purpose.
A great additional degree of activity was to be observed at the port : the creaking wheels of the waggons of our own and other tropas were to be heard daily, as they drew up their loads to the verdant quay or river side ; the beating or tattooing of hides sounded in my ears
THE GOYA SQUIRE.
from morning till night; ever and anon Campbell, with half a dozen of his followers or friends, was to be seen galloping up to my door, where were assembled all classes of traffickers, traders, and employés, dispatching by turns their various business with me connected with the winding up. In short, a busy and animated scene was constantly going forward in the generally quiet port of Goya.
About the middle of September, my brother having closed or made over to Mr. Postlethwaite all his Corrientes affairs, and having put on board the San José what produce he had there, shipped his own person in that vessel, and joined me at Goya, on his way to Buenos Ayres.
While we were thus together engaged in bringing all to a close, and anxiously looking forward to the day which was to see us fairly under way for the River Plate, an incident arose which threatened rather serious consequences, and which was on the whole of so singular a nature, as to deserve the somewhat ample recital which I now propose to give you of it.
When I first introduced our readers to the society of Goya, I mentioned that it boasted of two estancieros, or South American squires, and their families.
DAUGHTERS OF THE GOYA SQUIRE.
Their estates lying more conveniently for the port than for the capital, they fixed upon the former as the proper place for their town residence.
One of these squires had a nice family: a buxom wife, two or three hobble-de-hoy sons, and three or four daughters, the two oldest grown up, and the prettiest girls of Goya. The father indulged them, and allowed them much of their own way; the mother was proud of them, told them to hold up their heads with the best in Goya, and dressed them out and showed them off to the greatest advantage.
With respect to the name of this squire, our fashionable London readers will doubtless smile when I say that I hesitate to give the real appellation of the family in question. But as I do not doubt the offshoots of the estanciero have flourished apace,-as his
progeny, in all probability, move in the higher circles of the present day in Goya, they may not relish their names being brought forward in the present annals of the order and rise of their house. It is true we are here at a great distance from Goya; but what I now write may change its English garb, take a Spanish one, and “ circulate from the libraries of Goya, among all the fashionables of the place. Since our “ Letters on Para