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History of Cambria County, V.2

and bound, containing 302 pages, 5 by 7 ¾ inches, and bears date of 1834. The translation is from the second edition, dated May 1, 1740. Mr. Evans dwells especially upon the Welsh people and their language. In his opinion no one can perfectly understand the Welsh language without a knowledge of the Irish language. He asks : “Who could comprehend the meaning of Traeth saith in Cardinganshire, unless he was acquainted with the Irish? Eithon is the name of a river in Radnorshire ; the Irish word is Aith-afon, that is, a wild running river.” He also makes the claim that “Madog ap Owen Gwynedd discovered America as early as 1170 A. D.”

    William Barnard Conway came to Johnstown in 1835, (see article on Newspapers) and was probably the first lawyer to locate there. However, it appears he did not practice his profession but entered the field of journalism, possessing such ability as a political word caricaturist and the faculty of selecting fair words to express his exasperating sarcasm. In fiction or general newspaper writing his diction was cultured and graceful. He was not vindictive but tenacious in pursuing a political opponent with ridicule. He was the chosen defendant in twenty libel suits pending at the same time. It is probable his best production was the “Bribed Legislator” a philippic of a class of members of the Assembly whom he accused of voting for the re-chartering the United States bank during the Jackson-Van Buren reign. The poem is quite lengthy, but the closing paragraph which follows, is a characteristic specimen :

"The Bribed Apostate! blot his hateful name
From each and every scroll of honest fame.
Let no man trust him:--None forbear to shed
Contempt, and deep dishonor, on his head,
Let Scorn still point her finger and her jibes
And say – 'Behold the consequence of bribes.'
Let guileless children,-- as he passes by,
Shrink from his touch, and shudder at his eye ;
Let lovely women loath him with disgust ;
And shun him like the reptile in the dust ;
And whilst he lives, let Infamy alone
Claim the Bribed Legislator as her own.
Until he dies – and sinks into the grave,
To poison worms that feed upon the knave :
There, --' midst the storm, – let hideous Furies foul,
Hold nightly revels – and in concert howl :
Let hissing reptiles make that spot their home,
And be the watchful guardians of his tomb ;
And when he goes to Hell, let Devils stare,
And ask him, "who the Devil sent him there,'
And feel the insult, - deep, severe and keen,
To see a fiend, pre-eminently mean,
Midst better Devils rudely ushered in.

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Created: 26 Mar 2003, Last Updated: 30 Mar 2008
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Lynne Canterbury, Diann Olsen and contributors