… more from James Flint’s letter of September 28, 1818:

We passed several family waggons moving westward. The young and the strong walking, the aged and infants riding. Waggons for removing families, and those for carrying goods to Pittsburg, have a canvas cover, stretched over hoops that pass from one side of the wagon to the other, in the form of an arch. The front is left open, to give the passengers within the vehicle the benefit of a free circulation of cool air.  

[Do you recognize the iconic freight wagon of the eastern seaboard and the early western frontier — the Conestoga Wagon — from Mr. Flint’s description?]

At Chambersburg the coach halted during the night. The rough roads already surmounted, and the report of worse still before us, determined two of the passengers, besides myself, to walk, as an easier mode of traveling over the mountains. Chambersburg is 143 miles from Philadelphia, and 155 from Pittsburg; and lies in the intersection of the roads fromYork, Baltimore, and Philadelphia. Several branches of what has been very properly called the current of emigration, being here united, strangers from the eastern country, and from Europe, are passing in an unceasing train. An intelligent gentleman, at this place, informed me, that this stream of emigration has flowed more copiously this year, than at any former period; and that the people now moving westward, are ten times more numerous than they were ten years ago. His computation is founded on the comparative amount of the stage-coach business, and on careful observation. This astonishing statement is, in some degree, countenanced by a late [i.e., recent] notice in a New York newspaper, that stated the number of emigrants which arrived in that port during the week, ending the 31st of August last, to be 2,050.