- Project Runeberg -  America of the Fifties: Letters of Fredrika Bremer /
155

(1924) [MARC] Author: Fredrika Bremer
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guide no one can imagine. He accompanied us to
the cells of the prisoners. The prisoners live here
quite solitary, without intercourse with their
fellow-prisoners; they work, however, and they read.
The library is considerable, and contains, besides
religious books, works of natural history, travels,
and even a good selection of polite literature. It
is with no niggard hand that the nobler seed of
cultivation is scattered among the children of
imprisonment, “those who sit in darkness.“ The
spirit of the New World is neither timid nor
niggardly, and fears not to do too much where it
would do good. It is careful merely to select the
right seed, and gives of such with a liberal heart
and a liberal hand. I have often thought that
beautiful stories, sketches of human life, biographies,
in particular of the guilty who have become
reformed, of prisoners, who, after being liberated,
have become virtuous members of society, might
do more toward the improvement of the prisoner’s
state of mind and heart than sermons and religious
books—except always the books of the
New Testament—and I have therefore wished much to do
something of this kind myself.

I left this prison more edified than I had often
been on leaving a church. Friend Scattergood
told me that the number of the prisoners had not
increased since the commencement of the prison,

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