Page:Travels in Mexico and life among the Mexicans.djvu/632

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TRAVELS IN MEXICO.

in length, each family having two snug little rooms, and constituted one wall of his nursery, in which he had already set out over 3,000 fruit trees. They do things on a vast scale in Mexico, when they can get the land; next below Señor Müller are several haciendas, one of 60,000, and another of 125,000 acres.

With us, on the car, was a part owner of the Santa Eulalia mines, and of the celebrated iron mountain, the Cerro Mercado, of Durango, who was going to visit the latter, and would have to "stage it" four hundred miles beyond the end of track.

We ran for twenty-seven miles through a single grant, belonging to Señor Horcasitas, and at a curve around the Santa Eulalia mountains entered another hacienda of 45,000 acres, owned by the bankers, McManus & Son, of Chihuahua. At the Rio San Pedro a magnificent bridge of hewn stone, soft in color and easily worked, was being constructed across the broad and exposed river-bed. Over the river we entered another ranch. Las Delicias, of 150,000 acres, with 10,000 under cultivation, and which is said to rent for $15,000 per annum. The moderately fertile lands of the celebrated Conchos River lie beyond, and we rode for twenty-seven miles within sight of the stream, and along an immense irrigating canal, which renders this otherwise waste land productive in wheat, corn, barley, and even in cane, cotton, and tobacco.

At the fork of the Conchos and Rio Florida lies the adobe town of Santa Rosalia, with about 9,000 inhabitants, unattractive save for its plazuela, with its flowers, and rivulets, and singing birds. Above the town are the ruins of an adobe fort, taken by the gallant Doniphan on his march through the country to join General Taylor, at the beginning of the Mexican war. Four miles from the town are the hot springs of Santa Rosalia, famous throughout Northern Mexico for their curative properties; and these we visited, leaving the train with its expectorating passengers and shrieking infants, and taking to a vehicle denominated by courtesy a "hack." The ride, though rough, was delightful, first through the mud-colored hamlet, then down a shady lane, across an acequia. Fording the Rio Conchos, we passed over a mile of fertile farm land, level as a floor, and every