"Times are not good here,
the city is crumbing into ashes.
It has been buried under a lava flood of taxes and frauds and maladministration,
so that it has become only a study for archaeologists.
Its condition is so bad that when I write about it, [as I intend to do soon,]
nobody will believe I am telling the truth.
But it is better to live here in a sackcloth and ashes than to own the whole state of Ohio."

Patrick Lafcadio Hearn. New Orleans. 1879.