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The old family Bible,
166 'Tis for home,
155 8 To a first-born child,
94 47 To a young mother,
25 93 To young wives,
10 True economy,
27 119 True object of female education, 32 73 To the subscribers and readers of the 142 Microcosm,
191 37 Visit to a new married couple,
38, 54 143 Wants and claims of the poor,
65 176 Wedded love's first home,
28 46. Woman's love.
May it not be said of every department of human labor, in the field of usefulness, “ The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborors are few ?” When " the Mother's Magazine" was first established at Utica more than a year ago, we were deeply interested in its object and design-commended it warmly to our friends, and with sincere desires for its success and support, extended to it the hand of cordial good-will, and bade it "God speed.” We have since been induced by various reasons to commence a periodical in some respects similar to the one just mentioned. Is it unreasonable to look for the like approbation and patronage from a liberal and philanthropic community, in this age of benevolent enterprise ? May not such as are disposed, labor together in this little, evanescent world, which is nevertheless so full of want, and suffering, and error, with unanimity and concert: the field is wide, and the waste places many.
We know that “of making many books there is no end” — that almost every week brings to our door some new periodical, with its best bow :--but we know also that the reading community grows faster than the sustenance for its support. The tide of popular instruction, instead of ebbing, is, we trust, to swell and roll onward. Each of these new comers, by their own merits must stand or fall. We ask no other ground of favor, and present no other claim to indulgence.
Our plan differs from the Mother's Magazine, inasmuch as it is devoted to the interests of the wife as well as the mother, and designs to exhibit the influence of female character and
conduct, in making or marring the happiness of the domestic circle. To embrace all the duties, cares, trials and joys springing out of, and belonging to "that sweet circle of wreathed hearts called 'HOME."" At a time when the invention is taxed to discover every avenue of communicating good, it is singular that so interesting and important a one has not sooner been sought out and occupied. It is true that we have long possessed many popular and valuable works upon Education : but while their worth is acknowledged, and they are admitted to the dignity of standard works, they are left in the dust of years upon the shelf, unconsulted, even as books of reference.
The Magazine calls upon us in a more unceremonious way -is more winning, and social, and intimate it its address and will often gain a hearing (perhaps in part by obtrusiveness) where the graver oracles are disregarded on account of their stateliness and formality. But while these treatises on Education are in many respects valuable, they do not precisely meet the nature of our wants. We have theory in abundance, and are yet lamentably deficient in practice. Many of these theories are altogether too fine spun for every-day use—and while their beauty and excellence are acknowledged, we are at a loss when, and in what manner to apply them. They are inapplicable except in cases where every facility of wealth and leisure may be commanded. The day of business has come--and the theory which throws no light on practical operations—which affords no aid in the common occurrences of life is of no efficient utility whatever.
No part of the present work will be addressed directly to children. We have ever considered it a glaring defect in works of Education that so many address themselves indiscriminately to both parents and children. Thus holding up the faults of the parent, as a justification for the misconduct of the child. To children it should only be said, honor and obey your parents in the Lord. They are already sufficiently wise in sitting in judgment upon their guardians and instructors, without having the errors and short-comings of the parent carefully pointed out to them.
We do not expect to escape the reflection of inexperience,
as compared with those who number more years and more children. With all deference to the value of experience where it has grown in the school of wisdom, we confidently affirm that experience, alone, is not the one thing needful in the proper management of children. Judicious government, is founded in a knowledge of human nature, and a certain tact in the discernment of character. It is eminently “ the gift of God.” We see those who never have it and never attain to it: the history of whose experience, is but the history of their mismanagement. We see others again who begin aright—who though young and untried lay their plans in wisdom and prudence, and carry them on to success and final triumph.
We do not claim to possess the experience that shall counsel the wise, and guide the prudent. We humbly ask their assistance. It is the young, the thoughtless, the ignorant who need instruction and advice. We repeat that we have the experience of mismanagement all around us-and the mariner who would guide his bark in safety, does not despise the wrecks of former adventurers. He shapes his course by the shoals, the quicksands, the rocks and the whirlpools, as well as by the compass and the beacon. If the heart is steadfast to the haven of peace and joy-both skill and caution will be employed in reaching it.
The time is come when no very gentle hand is applied to the shoulder of every sluggard, and the words uttered sternly in their ear, “awake thou that sleepest !” The world is rolling on with the velocity of a declining body near the close of its career—and those who would do any thing in aid of the great moral and spiritual renovation that is abroad, must be wide awake. Who have more to do with it than mothers? Who have more to gain by it than women? To the progress of this reform they already owe their privileges, their dignity, their elevation. Look at the slavery and degradation in which they are held, where the light of the glorious Gospel does not shine, and say if we have not sufficient motive to labor for the promotion of Christianity, with all its attendant blessings. It is in the nursery that the christian, the Missionary, the servant of the Lord is first trained, as well as the statesman and
the warrior. The elements of all that is great and good are committed to the moulding hand of maternal skill, and fearful responsibilities are involved in the trust. But the promise of a certain blessing is given to fidelity. “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it." “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." "He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” With such encouragement why should we faint—under such honor, why should we murmur ? What greater honor can a human being claim than to bring up sons and daughters to God—and how thoroughly should they furnish themselves to the work! More than human acquisitions are needful here. She who would govern her household aright, must be the friend of God: and the wisdom that cometh down from above is pledged liberally to all who will ask for it. Can a woman be a mother, and not a christian !-can she have children, and not pray for them unceasingly ?-can she pray for them with a heart estranged from the love of God, without feeling her own insufficiency and impotence, and casting herself a humble suppliant at her Saviour's feet, to implore continual blessings upon them? If the fact was not forced upon our senses by every day's observation, we could never be brought to believe it. There is an incongruity in the character that should be harmonized. We would contribute our feeble endeavors, in connection with the wisdom of others, to furnish motives, and propose aids for sustaining mothers in their arduous duties, and will use all diligence to present an acceptable offering. The young wife too, shall find that we know what she would ask.
We send out this number as a “messenger bird," to see what it will bring back. If it returns with the green leaf of promise, we will go forth and build. If not, this effort will end with its commencement in the consciousness of good intentions. Should the encouragement furnished, warrant its continuance, the present number will be considered one of the series, and furnished accordingly to subscribers.