It Was Too Much In One Spot To Be A Prairie Fire; And As
We Drove On The Sad Apprehension That It Was A Stack Of Hay Was
The flames rose up in wide sheets, and cast a steady glare
upon the landscape.
It was a gorgeous yet a dismal sight. It always
seems worse to see grain destroyed by fire than ordinary merchandise.
Several stacks were burning. We saw that the usual precaution against
prairie fires had been taken. These consist in ploughing several
furrows around the stack, or by burning the grass around it to prevent
the flames from reaching it. It was therefore suspected that some
rascal had applied the torch to the hay; though for humanity's sake we
hoped it was not so. The terrible prairie fires, which every autumn
waste the western plains, are frequently started through the gross
carelessness of people who camp out, and leave their fires burning.
Some of us took supper at St. Anthony. I cannot say much of the hotel
de facto. The table was not as good as I found on the way at other
places above. There is a hotel now being built there out of stone,
which I am confident will exceed anything in the territory, if we
except the Fuller House. It is possible we all felt invigorated and
improved by the supper, for we rode the rest of the way in a very
crowded stage without suffering any exhibition of ill temper to speak
of, and got into St. Paul at last, when it was not far from eleven;
and after seventy-five miles of staging, the luxurious accommodations
of the Fuller House seemed more inviting than ever.
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