Page:Travels in Mexico and life among the Mexicans.djvu/631

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darkness, with its dazzling headlight, we can excuse them from making the sign of the cross, and bending to the ground, while they murmured,—as many did,—'Ave Maria Santissima, estan llegando el diablo; salvarnos!'"

It halted not, this black monster of invasion, but proceeded on its way southward, and when I was there, in June, 1883, was four hundred miles south of the Border. In company with a delightful acquaintance, Mr. Hotter, a well-known lawyer of St. Joseph, Missouri, I left Chihuahua one night, at eleven o'clock, for the end of track. The road had not then been "accepted" beyond the city by the government engineer, but a caboose was attached to every construction train in which passengers who chose to make the venture could stow themselves at their own risk. The opportunity for visiting hitherto inaccessible country and distant relations, without cost, was too tempting for the Mexican to resist, and the caboose was so crowded that a seat on the floor, even, was at a premium. The Mexicans had an abundance of provender, and they ate, and smoked, and spat, until the air was blue, themselves gorged almost to bursting, and the floor itself in the condition of their own dirty hovels. The men were voluble, the women loquacious, and the babies yelled all the night long, so that we were not at all sorry when daylight came.

About two miles from the city are the reduction works of the Santa Eulalia Mining Company, which are connected with their mines by a short narrow-gauge track, and are doing well. Adjoining this property is a vast hacienda, comprising some 62,000 acres, situated in a very fertile valley, and owned by Señor Enrique Müller. I drove over this great property at a later date with Señor Müller, who is a German by birth, and a gentleman of culture, broad views, and great attainments. He was building an adobe residence, with cut stone portals and pillars, 200 feet long by 125 feet wide, surrounding a court, and with graceful towers at every angle. All the work was done by his own laborers, even to the sculptured columns and arched portals. He had raised, in the year past, 70,000 bushels of wheat, and 20,000 of corn, while his herds covered the pastures for miles. The adobe quarters for his laborers were several hundred feet