• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Series title: Uncle Frank's home...
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Introduction
 The city boy in the country
 My sister
 The young gleaner
 Getting cooled off
 A black snake story; or, a black...
 Captain Parry's old mare
 My grandfather
 Drowning out woodchucks
 Cousin Helen and her pony
 The homesick boy
 The wasps' nest; or perils...
 Conclusion
 Back Cover
 Spine






Group Title: Uncle Frank's home stories
Title: The boy's and girl's country book
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00002240/00001
 Material Information
Title: The boy's and girl's country book with illustrations
Series Title: Uncle Frank's home stories
Physical Description: 174 p., <2> leaves of plates : ill. ; 15 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Woodworth, Francis C ( Francis Channing ), 1812-1859
Scribner, Charles, 1821-1871 ( Publisher )
Benedict, Charles W ( Printer , Stereotyper )
Howlands (Firm) ( Engraver )
Publisher: Charles Scribner
Place of Publication: New York
Manufacturer: C.W. Benedict
Publication Date: 1852, c1851
Copyright Date: 1851
 Subjects
Subject: Country life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Animals -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Grandfathers -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Parent and child -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Children and death -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Uncles -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Christian life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Brothers and sisters -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Embossed cloth bindings (Binding) -- 1852   ( rbbin )
Bldn -- 1852
Genre: Embossed cloth bindings (Binding)   ( rbbin )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- New York -- New York
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Uncle Frank.
General Note: Added engraved series t.p.
General Note: Frontispiece engraved and signed by Howland.
Funding: Brittle Books Program
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00002240
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002239997
oclc - 45838843
notis - ALJ0535

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter 1
        Front Matter 2
    Frontispiece
        Page i
    Series title: Uncle Frank's home stories
        Page ii
    Title Page
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Table of Contents
        Page v
        Page vi
    Introduction
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
    The city boy in the country
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 30a
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    My sister
        Page 34
        Page 35-36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
    The young gleaner
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
    Getting cooled off
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
    A black snake story; or, a black story about a snake
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
    Captain Parry's old mare
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
    My grandfather
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
    Drowning out woodchucks
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
    Cousin Helen and her pony
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
    The homesick boy
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
    The wasps' nest; or perils of disobedience
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
    Conclusion
        Page 173
        Page 174
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
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THE


BOY'S AND GIRL'S



COUNTRY BOOK.



M4it illustrations.


BY UNCLE FRANK,
AUTHOR OF THE STRAWBERRY GIRL," ETC.





NEW YORK:
CHARLES SCRIBNER, 145 NASSAU STREET.
1852.























Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, by
CHARLES SCRIBNER,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for
the Southern District ot New York.


C. W. BENEDICT,
STEREOTYPER AND PRINTER,
201 William st., N. Y.



















CONTENTS.




PAGX
INTRODUCTION, 7

THE CITY BOY IN THE COUNTIT 15

MY SISTER 36

THE YOUNG GLEANER, 67

GETTING COOLED OFF, 70

A BLACK SNAKE STORY, 78

CAPTAIN PARRY'S OLD MARK, 88

MY GRANDFATHER, 98

DROWNING OUT WOODCHUCKS, 111








CONTENTS.


COUSIN HELEN AND HER POINT .

THE HOMESICK BOT, .

THE WASPS' NEST, .

CONCLUSION, .


PAGS
S 128

145

S 150

S 173


LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.


A PEEP AT THE COWS AND SHEEP, Frontispiece

VIGNETTE TITLE-PAGE, 1

FEEDING THE CHICKENS, 30

WINTER SPORTS IN THE COUNTRY, 39

THE YOUNG GLEANER, 66

THE STUDENT AND THE OLD MARE, 89

UNCLE JESSE AMONG THE SHEEP, 132

COUSIN HELEN AND HER PONY, 141









THE COUNTRY BOOK.


CHAPTER I.

INTRODUCTION.

MY DEAR YOUNG FRIENDS: I am going
to chat with you a little about the sights
and scenes of the country. If you listen
pretty well, I will go on, in a sort of a
rambling way, for an hour or two, perhaps
longer; for I have a good deal to say
on this topic, and do rot easily get tired
out, when I begin upon it.
If you don't listen pretty well-if I see






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


you yawning and looking all around the
room-then I shall stop. I shall not com-
pel you to listen. I made up my mind,
long ago, that if I could not talk to chil-
dren, so that they would like to hear me,
and so that they would be sorry when I
had got through talking to them, the
sooner I stopped the better.
As for scolding, and storming, and
threatening, because the boys and girls
can't take an interest in what I have to say
to them, I don't believe in it. I don't be-
lieve it does any good to scold, and storm,
and threaten. It seems like saying to the
little folks, "' You rogues, come here, and
sit as still as mice for three hours. Don't





0o0TMrY BOOK.


stir an inch nao. None of your fidgeting.
Don'tet me see you move a foot or a hand.
Sit ip as straight as a ram-rod, and let
pie tire you out of all patience with my
dull and sleepy nonsense."
I don't like that plan of getting the at-
tention of children. When I was a boy, I
sometimes had it tried on me, and I did
not relish it at all. To be sure, I never
hear'just these words used. They were
very different words, in fact. But when
we children came to translate the words
into our own language, we could not
very well help giving them such a mean-
ing. They certainly seemed to imply as
much, if not more.





THE BOY'S AND GRLL'


No, I don't like that plan. I don't
like it at all. I believe in driving children
sometimes, but not when I want them to
listen to my stories. If they don't listen
with a good will, I would rather they
should go about something else, and let
me tell my stories to other boys and girls,
who can listen.
If I should happen to catch a young
rabbit, as I was walking along in the
woods, and should offer him a nice bit of
a sweet apple, he would very likely give
me to understand, that just at that time,
he didn't care much about eating. Well
now, suppose I should undertake to force
the fellow to eat. Suppose I should take





COUNTRY 9OOK.


a notion that he should eat, whether or
no; that the apple was good; that this
rabbit ought to like just such apples as
the one I had got; that there was no
good reason why he did not eat it; and
that I would make him eat it; and sup-
pose I should say to him, "You good-
for-nothing little rascal! eat this apple
now, or I'll choke you." Would that
be very wise ? Do you think anybody
would be likely to call me a second Solo-
mon, for my way of beating taste into
the rabbit ? I think not.
But it strikes me that that would be
about as reasonable as it would be to at-
tempt to force my stories, as some peo-






12 THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


pie are inclined to do, down the throats
of the little folks, if the little folks do not
happen to take a fancy to them. In my
way of thinking, if a person is thirsty,
he wants to drink, and if he is not
thirsty, he doesn't want to drink; and
you had better go away with your spring
water, if it is ever so cool and nice, and
let him alone until he does want it.
I said, a moment ago, that if you did
take an interest in my chat about the
country, I might reel off quite a number
of yarns from this kind of material. The
truth is, I never get tired of the charms
of the country, and I seldom get tired of
talking about them. I was born in the





COUNTRY BOOK.


country; and there, in the midst of some
of the wildest scenery of New England,
I lived until I was somewhat advanced
in my teens. There I learned to love
the rocks and hills, the brooks and rills,
the birds and flowers, the forest bowers-
excuse me for rhyming; on such a theme
I can hardly help it-there I became
so much in love with nature, that, ever
since then, it has made me homesick to
stay away from her, especially when she
has her summer dress on, many weeks at
a time.
But I do not mean, in what I have to
say to you, to describe the country as a
man would if he was writing a geogra-






14 COUNTRY BOOK.

phy or a history. What I mean to do is
to give you some tales and sketches that
relate mainly, if not entirely, to country
life.












CHAPTER II.

THE CITY BOY IN THE COUNTRY.

"FATHER," said Sanford Mayhew,
one day, soon after he came home from
school in the afternoon, "Willy Maston
has been telling me all about the country.
His father lives on a farm in Rhode
Island. He keeps cows, and sheep, and
horses, and hens, and geese, and ducks,
and turkeys. Willy has a colt of his own,
and he rides him, when he is at home.






16 THE BOY S AND GIRL'S


How I should like to live in the country.
Willy wants to have me go home with
him next vacation. Can I go with him,
father ?"
I don't know about it," said Mr.
Mayhew, Willy's father has not sent
you an invitation. Do you know that he
is willing to have you spend the vacation
at his house ?"
"Oh, yes, father," said Sanford,
"Willy has written home about it, and
his father says,' Tell him to come on.'
Can I go ?"
Yes, I guess so."
"Thank you, father, thank you."
When the vacation came, Sanford went





COUNTRY BOOK.


home with Willy. He had always lived
in the city, and though he had rode out
into the country a few times with his pa-
rents, he had never before stayed long
in the country, and while he was at Mr.
Maston's, he saw a great many things
which delighted him very much.
I don't wonder at all that he was
pleased. I think that a boy who has
been brought up, for the most part, in
the city, must have a strange taste, not
to be charmed with what he sees and
hears in and about a plain, old-fashioned
farm-house. I should want very much
to see such a boy. He would be a curi-
osity, I think. I would travel half a






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


dozen miles out of my way, any time,
just to get a sight of him.
Mr. Maston was a farmer on a large
scale. He attended to almost every
branch of agriculture which can be suc-
cessfully carried on in that little state.
Though his farm would be called a small
one in some parts of Virginia and in any
part of Mississippi, it was a large one for
New England. Sanford had a chance to
pick up a great deal about farming, dur-
ing his stay there; and one day, he took
it into his head that he would write
down some of the observations he had
made, and send them to his father in a
letter. Suppose we read a part of this





COUNTRY BOOK.


letter, or the whole, if the boy has no
objection.
"* Dear Father"-so the letter reads-
"you cannot think what sport we boys
had week before last, and the next week
after that. We saw the men wash the
sheep and shear them. Mr. Maston lets
us see everything that is going on. He
is a very kind man. I like him more
and more. Father, he makes me think
of you. Yesterday-I think it was yes-
terday-I was speaking to him, and be-
fore I thought, I called him father.
'Never mind,' said he. 'That's not so
bad a blunder, after all.' I was glad to
hear him say so, for I was half frightened







THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


when I came to think of the mistake I
had made.
Well, Mr. Maston asked us one day,
if we would like to see the sheep-wash-
ing. Of course we said, 'yes, sir,' and
of course we went, both of us. Willy
had seen the men wash sheep before, but
I had not. It was all new to me.
It was funny to see how they got the
sheep into the water. They made a
yard near the brook, so high that the
sheep could not jump over it, and large
enough to hold the whole flock at once.
I should think there were more than a
hundred sheep in all. This yard was
open on the side next the brook. But





COUNTRY BOOK.


there was no danger of the sheep getting
out on that side, unless the men took
them out that way. They were too
much afraid of the water for that. Oh,
how they did seem to dread the water.
Their coats were very much soiled.
I wondered why they did not like to be
washed. But then I remembered that I
did not love to be washed myself, when
I was a very little boy; and then I did
not think it so strange that the sheep dis-
liked the water so much. The men had
as much as they could do, when they
came across a large, stout sheep, to get
her into the brook. Sometimes the man
and the sheep had quite a battle before






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


the washing commenced. The sheep
pulled one way, and the man the other-
the sheep, once in a while, almost as
hard as the man. At last the sheep was
conquered. She was pitched, without a
great deal of ceremony, into the brook,
head foremost, and the man went in after
her.
"The water was deep enough where
the washing took place, to drown the
sheep; and they would have got drown-
ed, I suppose, if the men had not kept
their heads above water. After the
sheep had been dragged into the brook,
they were quiet enough. They were
quite helpless. They could not use their






COUNTRY BOOK.


legs any more, and the men held them as
easily, almost, as if the sheep had liked
the sport.
I must tell you about one little piece
of fun we had that day. Tom Styles
had never washed a sheep before. But
he wanted to try his hands at it, and
Mr. Maston let him, though he told him.
he was afraid he was not strong enough
to hold the sheep. Tom thought he was
as strong as any of the men. And so he
got hold of a sheep, and managed, after
a while, to get her almost to the water's
edge. The poor sheep was scared, and
what should she do but jump into the
middle of the stream, carrying Tom with






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


her! Tom came pretty near getting
drowned, and the sheep made out to
swim across the brook, and climb up the
opposite bank, while the men went to
the assistance of the drowning boy.
It took nearly all day to wash the
whole flock. They looked so nice and
clean, after they came out of the brook,
that one would hardly have known they
were the same sheep. I suppose they
were glad they had taken the ducking
then.
"A few days after the sheep were
washed, they were brought up, and shut
into the barn yard. It really seemed to
me that they were suspicious that some-





COUNTRY BOOK.


thing dreadful was going to be done to
them; for they crowded into one corner
of the yard, and bleated as if their hearts
would break. I believe there were no
hearts broken though, that day. They
had their coats stripped off from their
backs, to be sure. But I have no doubt
they were glad of it, when the stripping
was all through with. It was getting
to be warm weather, when they were
sheared; and they must have felt a great
deal more comfortable, when they got
rid of their heavy fleece of wool than
they did before. Once in a while, an
uneasy sheep would flounce a little,
while the man was shearing her, and






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


then she got cut with the shears. But
none of them got cut very badly.
It was amusing to see how the sheep
acted, after they were sheared. They
did not seem to know one another, at
first. The little lambs would not own
their mothers, when they came running
back into the yard, with their coats off.
They found each other out after a while,
though, I believe. I had never dreamed
before that shearing sheep would make
such a difference in their looks. Why
they seemed plump and fat before the
shearing, but afterward you could count
all their ribs, as if they were mere skele-
tons. Some of the fleeces that were






COUNTRY BOOK.


taken off from the sheep were very
heavy.
"These fleeces were all piled up to-
gether in the garret. It was not long
after that, that a man came along, and
bought the whole of them. Mrs. Mas-
ton said that when she was young, the
farmers there used to carry their wool to
the factory, where it was carded into
rolls, and then the women took the rolls
and spun them into yarn. She said that
she had spun, many and many a time, all
day long. The old wheel that she and
her mother used is still kept in Mr. Mas-
ton's garret. I suppose they keep it for
the good it has done, for it will never






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


be needed for spinning again, that is
certain.
Every morning, before breakfast,
Mrs. Maston goes out into the yard to
feed the fowls. I very often get up
early, and go out with her. It is fun to
see these fowls scamper, as soon as they
hear her voice. If they are ever so far
off, when she calls them, they run to her
in a moment. You never saw so many
fowls together as they have here. They
have hens, and geese, and turkeys, and
ducks, and peacocks, and Guinea fowls,
a great many of them. The Guinea
fowls have a song which don't please me
much. Their voice grates on my ear






COUNTRY BOOK.


something like the filing of a saw, though
Willy says it is more like the creaking of
his father's grindstone, when it wants
greasing, and Jeanette-have I ever told
you about Jeanette Maston? she is a
sweet girl, almost as sweet as my dear sis-
ter Sue-Jeanette insists that the music
reminds her more of the creaking of Mr.
Whiskey's tavern sign. I don't want to
be too hard to suit, and perhaps I ought
not to find much fault with music when
it don't cost me anything. But I must
say that, take it altogether, I believe I
never heard a worse song in my life than
the one which the Guinea fowl keeps
singing most of the time, from daylight






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


until he goes to roost. The screech
owl's music is bad enough. But the
Guinea fowl's song is as much worse
than the screech owl's, as his is worse
than the cut-cut-ca-dat-cut of the com-
mon hen, when she flies off from her
nest.
"The turkeys gobble and strut, at a
great rate. It does seem to me, that a
tom turkey, with his huge tail spread,
and his wings drooping, and his feathers
sticking out straight all over his body, is
one of the most important personages, in
his own estimation, that walks the earth.
He does contrive to get up a great deal
of mock dignity, considering how little
























































































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COUNTRY BOOK.


he has to be proud of; for he is a bird
of very small talents.
"Parson Jones, who preaches in the
village meeting-house-what we call
churches in the city, they call meeting-
houses here, and I am trying to get ac-
customed to the name, though it sounded
odd enough at first-Parson Jones was
here two or three days ago; and he said
he never saw a great dandy of a turkey,
strutting about, and gobbling himself
hoarse, and putting on ever so many airs,
without thinking how much this foolish
bird was like some persons he met with
once in a while.
"Said he, when I see a man enter






THE BOY S AND GIRL'S


the door of the meeting-house, and stalk
up the broad aisle, rigged out in all the
filigrees of the latest fashion, no matter
how grotesque, shuffling and scraping, as
if he was the great Mogul, I always set
him down as little else but an imitator
of our gobbling friend the tom turkey.
I can't help thinking, what a poor, sorry
figure he would make, if you were only
to give him a thorough picking. How I
should love to buy such a man for what
he is really worth, and then sell him for
what he thinks he is worth. It would
make a rich man of me, I think.'
"There are some pigeons belonging
to Mr. Maston, who always come to get






COUNTRY BOOK.


their breakfast, when Mrs. Maston goes
out to feed the fowls. They are so
tame, father, that they will fly upon the
shoulder of their mistress; and I have
seen them, when she had cake or biscuit
between her teeth, reach up and pick
the morsels from her mouth. I never
saw any birds so tame. They will fly
into the house, any time, if their mistress
stands at the window or door, and calls
them. I wish they were not so shy of
me. I would give a good deal, if they
would let me caress them as they do
Mrs. Maston."












CHAPTER III.

MY SISTER.

IT is twilight, and I am alone. Now
come before me, from the spirit land, the
forms of those I love. I am no longer
alone. Though the busy, bustling, visi-
ble world is shut out from the mind, fa-
miliar faces, long missed from earth,
hover near me, and look kindly upon
me. My sister I see her glad smiles,
hear her accents of love, converse with





Pages
35 36
Missing
From
Original






COUNTRY BOOK.


her, as in earlier days, ere her spirit de-
parted. 0 this still, serious, solemn hour
of twilight! I bless my heavenly Father
for the associations which cluster around
it, for the thoughts of the past which it
calls up, for the images of loved and lost
ones which it reveals. My sister! The
snows of several winters have fallen upon
her grave; and yet her form appears be-
fore me as distinct, almost, as if it were
pictured on the outward eye. Is this
vision all unreal ? Has the spirit world,
then, no connection with the physical
world ? Is there no communion of spirits
on earth with kindred spirits fiom the
better land? I do not know. What






COUNTRY BOOK.


strange, dark mysteries hang over the
spirit world!
My sister! The scenes through which
we passed together are spread out again
before the soul's eye, with the freshness,
the clearness, the vividness of reality.
The home of my childhood was in the
country. The mansion where we dwelt
was nestled amid a thousand rural
charms. They have all left. their im-
ages in my affections; and she, that
cherished sister, is associated closely
with each one of them. We climbed
the high hills together, in the summer
time, and together strayed through the
fields, and meadows, and forests, after
































S-.--INTES P T IN T C-O N,
*WT- .WlTJIl tPOBT8 IN TIIE COUNTY. I






COUNTRY BOOK.


wild flowers. In the winter, too, we
shared a thousand rural pleasures, the
thought of any one of which makes my
heat throb with delight at this distant
day.
It is a mistaken notion that the coun-
try is dull and gloomy in the winter sea-
son. Some people think so. But I am
sure they cannot have lived in the coun-
try themselves in the winter. They
must have made up their minds by guess,
I should think. Why, when I was a
boy, the very choicest sports we had
During the year came in the winter.
What can be pleasanter, when the
ground is white with snow, and the






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


ponds and rivers are covered with ice,
than to roll up huge snow-balls, and
draw each other to school on a sled, and
slide down hill, and get ahead of the
wind on a brand new pair of skates?
The truth is, the country is pleasant at
all seasons of the year; and I do not feel
disposed to give that boy or girl a great
deal of credit for shrewdness, who does
not find it out.
Reader, let me tell you a story con-
nected with one of the winter sports of
my boyhood, in which my sister had a
share.
It was in the month of December.
The weather was as cold as any Green-






COUNTRY BOOK.


lander could reasonably desire. The
mercury would have sunk to a very low
point, I doubt not, if we had had any
thermometers in those days. But such
instruments were scarce then, in the part
of the world which I was at that time
proud to call my home. So we had to
find out whether it was cold or not, and
how cold and how hot it was, by our
own feeling-a measure of the tempera-
ture, which, however accurate it may be
for certain purposes, was generally accu-
rate enough for our wants. The snow
was very deep that winter. I will not
undertake to say precisely how deep it
was. But I remember it was even with






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


tie fences in most places, and completely
buried them up in others. Some of the
drifts were half as high as our corn-
house, I should think. In those days,
the whole neighborhood always turned
out, with their oxen and ox-sleds, to
break paths, after every fall of snow. At
the time I speak of, there were several
days when the neighbors, for miles
around, were as completely hemmed in
by the snow-drifts, as if they had been
besieged by an enemy, and barricaded.
Well, the paths were broken, after a
while, and navigation started again.
Pretty soon the sleighing became good;
and then didn't the sleighs skim briskly






COUNTRY BOOK.


over the ground; and didn't we boys, to
say nothing about the girls, have a fine
time of it with our sleds ?
One Saturday, several of the boys
were going to the mill-pond, to catch
pickerel in the winter; and I will de-
scribe the process. We cut holes in the
ice, with an axe, and threw our hooks,
baited with a piece of pork generally-as
it was not easy, at that season of the year,
to get fish to bait with-into the hole.
A skillful fisherman sometimes had very
fine success fishing in this way.
"Come, hurrah, Frank!" said Joe
Standish, coming along to our house
pretty soon after dinner, that Saturday





THE BOY'S AND GIRL S


afternoon, "come, hurrah! We're going
down to the pond. Bill Paxton has got
the hooks and lines, and we're going to
have fine times catching pickerel. Come
along, as quick as you can. I can't wait
a minute."
I started to find my father. But he
was not to be found. Then I went to
my mother, told her what was going on,
and asked if I could have a hand in the
sport.
My good mother, who never loved to
deny me anything, if she could possibly
gratify my wishes, thought a moment or
two, and then said, "No, Frank, I think
I would not go, if I were in your place.






COUNTRY BOOK.


I'm not quite sure that that kind of sport
is safe. At any rate, I would rather not
have you go. You know I've promised
sister a ride on the sled this afternoon.
How do you think she will get along,
unless you manage the sled ?"
I heard that reply with some disap-
pointment, and not a little regret. It
seemed to me that there was not the
slightest danger attending this mode of
fishing. I could not see where the dan-
ger was, and I ventured to tell my
mother so.
She did not allow me to reason with
her a great while, on matters of this kind.
She did, before long, what every parent






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


ought to do in similar circumstances-
cut the argument as short as pie crust, by
letting me know pretty decidedly, that I
could not go, and that the sooner I stop-
ped fretting and whining about it the
better.
Well, Joe, who was half crazy to get
to the pond, and who had waited for the
decision of my case with no great stock
of patience, started off without me.
He had been gone an hour, perhaps,
when Chloe, Mrs. Standish's hired girl,
came over to our house, to inquire about
him. It seemed that Mrs. Standish, as
well as my mother, had some doubts as
to the safety of this kind of fishing, and






COUNTRY BOOK.


had absolutely refused to let her son go.
Joe was generally an obedient boy; and
Mrs. Standish did not dream that he
would disobey her in this instance, until
one of the neighbors who called, hap-
pened to tell her that he met Joe on his
way to our house, as he came along the
road. The thought instantly struck her,
that Joe had decided to go to the pond,
and that he had called for me to go with
him. So she sent Chloe over to find out
how the matter stood, and directed her,
in case she did not find the truant boy at
our house, to go down to the pond after
him.
Chloe, learning the state of the case





THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


from my mother, started at once for the
pond.
My brother and I started in a different
direction, and on quite a different expe-
dition from the one Joe was engaged in.
We rigged out our little sled, and after
sister had bundled herself up sufficiently
warm to satisfy our careful mother, we
took her out to ride. I was really
ashamed of my foolish whim about going
to the pond, when I heard sister say she
never was so happy before in her life.
Though I felt my disappointment pretty
keenly for a little while, it gradually
wore off, and in less than an hour, I was
as cheerful as any boy need wish to be,






COUNTRY BOOK.


and cared no more about the sport that
was going on at the pond, than if I never
had heard of such a thing. How much
of my happiness came from the reflection
that I had made some sacrifice to obey
my mother, I can't tell at this distant day.
Perhaps I could not have told then, even
if I had brought to my aid a little bit of
philosophy, and analyzed my feelings,
which I did not do, I presume, as that
is something quite unusual for boys no
older than I was at that time. I don't
know what made me happy. But I re-
member I was happy, and I remember
my dear sister was happy, and that we
were all happy.






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


"Oh, Frank," said that dear girl,
while we were on our way home, after
a long jaunt with the sled, "how kind
and good you are to me. I know you
wanted to go to the pond very much. I
saw you did; and I was almost sorry
mother would not let you go. But you
wanted to see me happy, too, didn't you?
And here you have been almost all the
afternoon, you and Arthur both, playing
the horse, while I have been riding. I
don't believe many girls have such kind
brothers as I have."
I can't answer for my brother. But I
know that this amiable language from my
sister filled my bosom with shame. Her






COUNTRY BOOK.


construction of my conduct was alto-
gether too favorable. Her loving heart
saw the act only in the light of an un-
selfish sacrifice for her pleasure. The
broad and thick mantle of charity she
ever kept ready for use, had covered up
all that was wrong on my part. She
forgot how unwilling I was, at first, to
yield to my mother's will, and with what
a bad grace I yielded at last.
It was almost sundown when we re-
turned from our excursion. But, oh,
how our light and cheerful hearts were
saddened, as we entered the door of our
house. My mother was in tears. What
could have happened 1 In a few minutes







THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


we learned all. Poor Joseph Standish,
venturing too near the hole that had been
cut through the ice on the pond, had
slipped into the water, and was drowned !
The influence of a kind and amiable
sister over a brother, in childhood and
early youth, is exceedingly desirable. It
softens, polishes, humanizes him. Many
a time, when my impulsive and rougher
spirit has been on the point of commit-
ting some petty act of mischief, has the
gentle voice of my sister dissuaded me
from it. I remember that, one bright
and beautiful day in early autumn, when
I was bent on playing the truant from
school, and had settled my whole plan






COUNTRY BOOK.


of operations, even-I blush to say it-
the writing of a false apology to the
village schoolmaster, that gentle girl,
leaning lovingly on my shoulder, and
pleading with me, as an angel might have
done, to heed the voice of conscience,
and do sight, won me, sent the crimson
current of shame through my face, and
made me tear the note I was penning
into a thousand fragments, while I asked
God to save me from ever cherishing such
guilty thoughts again.
In our wanderings through the forest,
separated only by a meadow and a nar-
row brook from our dwelling, we one day
found a sparrow's nest, with three or four
4







THE BOY'S AND GIRL S


little sparrows in it, too young to fly.
The old birds left the nest as we ap-
proached, and hovered around, not far
off, showing a great deal of love for their
offspring, and evidently not a little afraid
that they were soon to be childless.
Both my sister and myself looked upon
this scene for some minutes with a great
deal of interest. We examined the nest,
and admired the skill and ingenuity
which the birds had displayed in build-
ing it. How nicely it was braided to-
gether. There were coarse straws and
sticks on the outside of it, and on the in-
side, there were fine hairs, and little bits
of cotton, and wool, and thistle down,






COUNTRY BOOK.


curiously and beautifully interwoven. It
was a charming piece of workmanship,
that little sparrow's nest. Well, as I
stood there looking at it, I thought it
would be a fine thing to take those little
sparrows home with us, nest and all. I
had never had any tame birds; and I
did not doubt that I could soon make
these sparrows so tame that they would
come and hop upon my shoulder, when I
called them. Forgetting every kind and
generous feeling, in this one selfish de-
sire, I was about to climb up the tree,
and secure the helpless sparrows, when
my sister made such an appeal to my
better feelings, that my arm was entirely







THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


unnerved. I did not violate the peace
of that happy family, but left them chirp-
ing their gratitude and gladness. Boys
have often strong temptations to rob the
nests of the beautiful birds that cluster
around the abodes of men, so confidingly,
so lovingly. I have had some such
temptations. But never, since my sis-
ter's eloquent plea for the young spar-
rows, have I yielded to this temptation.
That plea has secured the happiness of
many a forest warbler. I owe much of
the good-will I have ever cherished
towards the birds to the tenderness with
which she always treated them. I never
could harm one of the dear little things






COUNTRY BOOK.


since that memorable affair of the spar-
row's nest.
I remember once having killed a robin
with a stone. I did it rather through
carelessness than by design, however.
The robin was as busy as he could be,
picking currants in our yard, when I
threw a stone at him, to frighten him away.
The stone hit the poor fellow, however-
strange enough, I always thought, for I
was a very indifferent marksman-and
he fell down from the bushes, fluttered a
few minutes, gasped a few times for
breath, and died. I wept a long time
about that tragic affair. The image of
the dying robin did not leave my mind






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


for the entire summer, and I did not love
to go near the spot where he died for
months afterward.
That was a sad day for us all, when
we learned that this cherished sister must
die, and it was a sadder day still when
the dreaded hour arrived. Yet her end
was calm and peaceful. Her sun went
down while it was yet day. But it
went down unclouded. "I am weary,
brother," said she, let me sleep." She
did sleep-slept the long sleep of death,
and her tired spirit found repose.
My sister !-how like a flood do
thoughts of thy loving heart; of thy
deep, warm, active piety; of thy cheer-






COUNTRY BOOK.


ful, patient, trustful spirit; of thy happy
frame, while sinking under the influence
of disease-how like a flood do these
thoughts, and such as these, rush into
my mind, as I muse on the past at the
calm hour of twilight.



I.
And art thou dead ?
Loved one dost thou not listen to my blessing ?
Canst thou not feel a brother's fond caressing ?
Has thy soul fled ?
II.
Alas, how soon
The things of earth we love most fondly perish!
Why died the flower our hearts had learned to cherish,
Why, ere 'twas noon ?







THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


III.
I cannot tell-
But though the gloomy grave be now her dwelling,
And though my chastened heart with grief is swelling,
I know 'tis well.

IV.
'Tis well with thee-
'Tis well with thee, thou pale and silent sleeper!
Though I am left a stricken, lonely weeper,
Alas for me !

V.
How sweet the smile
I saw, when we love's last sad office paid thee-
Methought thy spirit blessed us, as we laid thee
To rest awhile.

VI.
'Tis well for me-
'Tis well-my home, since thou art there, is dearer--
The grave is welcome, if it bring me nearer
To heaven and thee.






COUNTRY BOOK. 63

VII.
I'll not repine-
No, blest one! thou art happier than thy brother;
I'll think of thee, as with my angel mother,
Sweet sister mine.

VIII.
I'll check this tear-
'Tis sweet to my sad heart, with sorrow riven,
To think that thou wilt come to me from heaven,
And bless me here.

IX.
Still would I share
Thy love, and meet thee where the flowers are springing,
Where the wild bird his joyous note is singing
Come to me there.

x.
0 come again,
At the still hour, the holy hour of even,
Ere one pale star has gemmed the vault of heaven-
Come to miu then.








64 COUNTRY BOOK.

XI.
I shall not dwell
Long in this stormy world, so full of weeping;
Soon shall I sleep where thou art calmly sleeping.
Sister, farewell!






























- .A I


I-CC
~~

r~ -I1'

J~lf~~ti?~C~~


















CHAPTER IV.

THE YOUNG GLEANER.

I.
"Why am I so poor and lonely,
In a world so full of joy ?
Must I, then, a menial only,
Ever thus my life employ ?"

II.
Thus a gleaner was repining,
As she sat her down to rest,
Summer's sun above her shining,
Winter lowering in her breast.








68 THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S

III.
"Forced to toil from morn till even,
In the sunshine and the rain,
Scorned by men, unloved by Heaven,
For one meagre sheaf of grain!

IV.
Yet, with such a life before me,
Oft my mother still will say,
God is kind, and angels o'er thee
Watchers are by night and day."

V.
Heard she, then, that weary maiden,
Words that seemed by God addressed:
Come to me-though heavy laden,
I will give thy spirit rest."

VI.
Then the gleaner's toil grew lighter;
Ceased for aye her tears to flow;







COUNTRY BOOK. 69

Then her fair young brow beamed brighter,
Then it caught a heavenly glow.

VII.
Toils she now, from morn till even,
In the sunshine or the rain,
Blest to be beloved by Heaven,
Though a gleaner 'mid the grain.













CHAPTER V.

GETTING COOLED OFF.

A VERY clever man-I use the word
clever in the sense generally current in
New England-was Uncle Elijah Wel-
born. This uncle, please to take notice,
was not everybody's uncle, like quite a
number of people in our neighborhood.
He was my own individual uncle-my
uncle to all intents and purposes; and I
intend no disrespect to anybody else, or






COUNTRY BOOK.


to anybody else's uncle, when I say that
I don't believe it would have been easy
to find a better specimen of an uncle, if
you were to have made the whole circuit
of our country.
He was a hard-working man, and he
was not exactly satisfied if the men and
boys he had about him did not work
hard, likewise. But he had too kind a
heart in his bosom to keep those in his
employ delving all the time, in perpetual
motion, as if they were turning a tread-
mill. Uncle Elijah loved money. But
he did not worship it. He did not grind
it out of the poor. He never plotted
with his wife to squeeze it out of those in






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


his employ. He did not put them on a
short allowance at the table, to obtain it.
Leeching was no part of his system.
There was nothing small about the
man. Nobody, I venture to affirm, ever
heard of his doing a mean thing. I
don't believe he could have played a
trick or dishonest part, even if he had
tried; and I should not have been more
surprised to see potatoes growing on the
russet apple-tree in his door-yard, than I
should have been to see a streak of little-
ness about him. He was always kind,
always, almost always good-natured, and
we all loved liim.
He has long been resting in the quiet






COUNTRY BOOK.


grave-yard near the old brown mansion
where he was born, and where he lived
to a ripe old age. But I remember his
sun-burnt countenance, as if it were but
yesterday that I saw it beaming pleas-
antly upon us.
He was not rich in this world's goods.
But he was rich in faith. Not that he
made any pompous display of his reli-
gion, as Uncle Miah did of his. He did
nothing of the kind. His piety was of
quite another stamp. It was still and
quiet, though he was never ashamed of
it, and never allowed it to get rusty. He
never wore a long face. Those who
make the greatest hue and cry about
5






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


their religion, are not always the most
devoted Christians. On the contrary,

-" Stillest streams
Oft water fairest meadows; and the bird
That flutters least, is longest on the wing."

Uncle Elijah was not a learned man.
He was no scholar. The books that
found their way into the old brown house
in his early days, were few and far be-
tween; and after he was grown up to
manhood, he gave himself but little time
for general reading. Yet he pored over
the pages of the old family Bible, as if it
contained treasures of gold. There he
found treasures, too-treasures that were






COUNTRY BOOK.


worth more to him than would have been
all the gold in the mines of California.
Uncle Elijah, though as grave as a
judge, when he set out to be, had a good
deal of humor about him, for every-day
use. He relished a joke as well as any
man in the neighborhood. I don't know
that I ever saw him reprove or punish
any one for a fault, without mixing more
or less real good humor with the reproof
or punishment.
I remember-for it was this story that
I had in my mind, when I began to write
about the good old man-I remember
hearing my cousins Charles and George,
Uncle Elijah's oldest boys, tell what a







THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


droll kind of punishment they got from
their father one morning, for quarreling
They were lying in a trundle-bed in
the same room where the old man was
making a fire. It was a bitter cold
morning, and my uncle was putting on a
huge log of wood, all covered with snow,
which he had just taken from the door-
yard. The boys took it into their heads
to quarrel.
You had better stop," said their
father.
But they didn't stop. It sometimes
takes boys a good while to get through
with their little quarrels. The quarrel
must be attended to, let what will come.







COUNTRY BOOK. 77

Uncle Elijah said no more, however.
He was a man of few words. But when
he thought he had waited quite long
enough for his command to be obeyed,
he took the great log of wood, and put
it into the trundle-bed, between the two
boys. There," said he, "I guess
you'll get cooled off, now."
And he was right in his guess. They
did get cooled off-so my cousin George
told me-in a very short time indeed.












CHAPTER VI.

A BLACK SNAKE STORY;

OR, A BLACK STORY ABOUT A SNAKE.

IT happened one hot day in July, that
I was hoeing corn in Uncle Elijah's field,
with my cousin George. Oh, how hot
it was! It almost makes me take my
handkerchief out of my pocket now, and
wipe my forehead with it, only to think
what a roasting, broiling sun there was
shining on the corn-field that day. There







COUNTRY BOOK.


was nobody at work in the field but
George and myself. It was afternoon.
We had worked hard, ever since morn-
ing, only stopping about an hour in the
middle of the day, to eat our dinner, and
to have a nooning," as the farmers
called their resting-spell at dinner-time.
Oh, how hot it was We both got lazy.
"Frank," said my cousin, after stop-
ping and leaning on his hoe-handle a few
minutes, it is dreadful hot."
You may be sure I perfectly agreed
with him in the opinion he had given.
It did not seem to me to need any argu-
ment.
What is it best to do ?" said he.






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


"I don't see any other way," I re-
plied, but to hoe on until it is time to
drive the cows home."
But we shall get roasted or broiled,
I don't know which."
"Suppose we go over and tell Uncle
Elijah that we are a little afraid of being
roasted." The old man was at work in
the ten-acre lot at the time, with three
or four other men, busily engaged raking
up hay.
George laughed at the idea of going to
the shrewd old man with any such com-
plaint as the one I spoke of; and finally
we both agreed that the roasting excuse
would never do at all. But I tell you






COUNTRY BOOK.


what, Frank," said George, after being in
a brown study for a while, I've hit on
something that will do."
Well," I said, leaning lazily on my
hoe, "out with it."
You know how frightened father al-
ways is when there is a snake any where
about ?"
"Yes, he tore down a rod of stone
wall, you know, only last week, to get a
chance to kill one."
"And that was nothing but a poor
striped snake. If it had been a black
snake, as large as the one we killed this
morning, I don't know but he would
have torn down half the stone wall on






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


the farm, rather than not have killed the
rascal."
"Well, what then ? what have snakes
to do with getting out of this corn-field ?"
I'll tell you. We'll go and get the
black snake we killed this morning, if
the crows haven't picked his bones before
this time-we'll go and get him, and lay
him across the rows of corn here where
we are hoeing, and then we'll tell father
that there is a great snake in the way, so
that we don't like to hoe any more."
"Good!" I said. "And we shan't
have to tell any lie about it, shall we ?"
What strange notions boys have some-
times, about the difference between a lie







COUNTRY BOOK.


and the truth. They would not exactly
tell a lie in words for anything. But
they will tell one by what they do not
say, if they do not dare to tell one by
what they do say. There are a great
many different ways of telling an untruth.
My cousin and I-it really makes me
ashamed of myself, now, when I think of
it, and am obliged to reflect that I had
any hand in it-were just foolish enough,
and just wicked enough, to do as George
proposed. We put the black snake
across the two rows of corn, the crows
not having quite finished picking his
bones-and started for the ten-acre lot.
It was agreed that I was to be spokes-






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


man. We came up to the place where
my uncle and the rest of the hired men
were at work, and stopped with our hoes
on our shoulders.
"Well, boys, what's the matter?"
said the old man. You haven't hoed
all the corn in that field, have you ?"
I told him the whole story-that there
was a monstrous black snake lying right
across the two rows of corn where we
were at work; that we had hoed until
we came within a yard or two of the
snake, and then we had run away. I
concluded by telling my uncle that we
hoped he would'nt send us back again to
be bitten by the black snake.






COUNTRY BOOK.


Uncle Elijah's men all laughed heart-
ily at what I said. They saw through
the whole thing. I knew they did. As
for Uncle Elijah, he did not laugh a bit.
I never saw him look more grave and se-
rious, though I did think, when I caught
his eye once, that there was a little
roguish twinkle about it !-a very little.
"Well, well," said he, "this thing
must be looked into."
And he wiped his face on the sleeve
of his tow frock, and held his head down,
as if he was in the deepest thought.
Boys," said he, after a while, that
snake has no business in my corn-field,
and you have. Now I'll show you what





THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


to do. Go back to the field, and when
you get near the black snake, tell him to
be off with himself. Speak to him just
as loud as you can scream-for he may
be hard of hearing, you know; snakes
sometimes are-tell him, three times, to
be off with himself; and if he doesn't
stir, go at him with your hoes, and cut
his head off. He has no business there,
and you have. Break his neck for him
if he doesn't get out of your way."
Oh what a laugh my uncle's hired men
set up then. But my uncle himself-he
did not laugh; he looked as sober as if
he were in a "conference meeting."
You may judge how George and I felt,






COUNTRY BOOK. 87

as we went back to the corn-field. For
myself, I wished I was a mouse, and
could gnaw a little hole under the barn
floor, and go in there, and spend my days
like a hermit, out of the way of the
world.













CHAPTER VII.

CAPTAIN PARRY'S OLD MARE.

AMONG our neighbors, there was no
one more generally beloved than Captain
Parry. How he came to be called cap-
tain, I never could find out, though I sup-
pose that, at a period somewhat removed
toward antiquity, he must have command-
ed the militia. But be that as it may,
he was one of the best men that ever
lived.







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COUNTRY BOOK.


Captain Parry had an old mare, who,
.it was reported in our neighborhood, was
one of the wisest of her race that had
ever been seen in those parts. Katy
(that was the name of the mare) had be-
longed to Captain Parry's father, and
when I first knew her, she was getting to
be quite an aged mare. Still she was
"as smart as a steel-trap," to use the
language of her master, and used to do a
great deal of work on the farm.
Captain Parry used to tell a fine joke
connected with old Katy. There was a
young man, Patrick by name, living near
Captain Parry, who was a great student.
He loved his books, it would seem, bet-






THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


ter than he loved to eat, or quite as well,
certainly.
That is a pretty good fault," you
say.
Yes, I do not feel disposed to say any-
thing against a person's love of study.
That is all well enough. Well, as I was
going to say, this young man, who loved
his books so well, called at Captain Par-
ry's one day, and asked him if he would
let him have his mare to go to Ryetown.
Captain Parry never loved to say no
to anybody, when he was asked to do a
favor, and, although he was sorry the
man had asked for the mare, because he
was afraid he did not know much about






COUNTRY BOOK.


taking care of her, he said, "Yes, you
can have her, but keep her well; she is
so good a beast, that she deserves to be
well taken care of."
The student promised to take good care
of old Katy, and the saddle and bridle
were put on her, and off the two posted
to Ryetown.
It is easy to forget one's promises.
Our student found it so. He did not
think to feed the mare while he was gone,
though he started in the morning and did
not get back until near bed-time.
The young man got hold of a very in-
teresting book in Ryetown, and on his
way home he threw the reins on the old






THE 'BOY'S AND GIRL'8


mare's neck, and let her walk very slow-
ly, and he amused himself by reading in
his book.
Katy, however-so it would seem-
was not so much amused with that way
of traveling as the student was. She got
cross. Probably she wanted to get home
as soon as she could, thinking that very
likely Captain Parry would have some
supper for her in the stable.
By and by, Katy came to a brook
that crossed the road. She had her
choice, either to go over the bridge or
wade through the stream. I say she had
her choice; for the man she carried on
her back had given up the reins to her,






COUNTRY BOOK.


and she could go just where she pleased.
He thought she would find her way home,
and that was all he wanted of her.
Katy knew a thing or two. She did
not go over the bridge. She pretended
she wanted to drink. Perhaps she did
want to drink. She wanted to eat, that
was certain. But whether she was thirsty
or not, she went down to the brook, wa-
ded about half way across, stopped, and
drank a little.
The water in the middle of the stream
was rather deep. It came quite up to
the feet of our student, and that roused
him. When he saw where he was, he
was a little alarmed, and thought it would





THE BOY'S AND GIRL'S


be best for Katy to get through her
drinking as quick as she could, and hurry
toward dry land. Get up !" said he.
But Katy did not get up. She did a
very different thing. She took it into
her head to shake herself all over, as if
forty thousand flies were biting her.
Poor Patrick! he was not prepared for
any such trick as that, or he would have
held on. He was not prepared for the
shaking; and off he tumbled into the
stream. His hat went one way, and his
book another.
As for Patrick himself, after flounder-
ing in the water for some time, uncertain
whether he was going to drown or not,




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