• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Frontispiece
 On a mountain trail
 Quite a singer
 The crows' military drill
 The imperious yawn
 Jack's cure
 George and Nellie Custis
 March
 Seven little Indian stars
 The ducking of goody grill
 Off for slumberland
 Comedies for children
 An old doll
 Fifteen minutes with a cyclone
 The screech owl
 Noray and the ark
 Crowded out o' crofield
 "Thereby hangs a tail"
 Mother nature's babes in the...
 The letter-box
 The riddle-box
 Back Cover
 Spine






Title: St. Nicholas
ALL VOLUMES CITATION PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00065513/00224
 Material Information
Title: St. Nicholas
Uniform Title: St. Nicholas (New York, N.Y.)
Alternate Title: Saint Nicholas
Physical Description: 68 v. : ill. ; 25-30 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Dodge, Mary Mapes, 1830-1905
Publisher: Scribner
Place of Publication: New York
Publication Date: -c1943
Frequency: monthly
regular
 Subjects
Subject: Children's literature -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Dates or Sequential Designation: -v. 67, no. 4 (Feb. 1940) ; v. 70, no. 1 (Mar. 1943)-v. 70, no. 4 (June 1943).
Dates or Sequential Designation: Began with: Vol. 1, no. 1, Nov. 1873.
Numbering Peculiarities: Suspended Mar. 1940-Feb. 1943; vols. 68-69 omitted.
Issuing Body: Published by: Century, Aug. 1881- ; by Educational Pub. Corp. -1940; by St. Nicholas Magazine, 1943.
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 2, no. 12 (Oct. 1875); title from cover.
General Note: Conducted by Mary Mapes Dodge.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00065513
Volume ID: VID00224
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 01764817
lccn - 04012675
 Related Items
Preceded by: Our young folks
Preceded by: Children's hour (Philadelphia, Penn.)
Preceded by: Little corporal
Preceded by: Schoolday magazine
Preceded by: Wide awake

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Frontispiece
        Frontispiece
    On a mountain trail
        Page 371
        Page 372
        Page 373
        Page 374
        Page 375
    Quite a singer
        Page 376
    The crows' military drill
        Page 377
        Page 378
        Page 379
        Page 380
    The imperious yawn
        Page 381
    Jack's cure
        Page 382
        Page 383
        Page 384
        Page 385
        Page 386
        Page 387
        Page 388
        Page 389
        Page 390
        Page 391
        Page 392
        Page 393
        Page 394
    George and Nellie Custis
        Page 395
        Page 396
        Page 397
        Page 398
        Page 399
        Page 400
        Page 401
        Page 402
        Page 403
        Page 404
    March
        Page 405
    Seven little Indian stars
        Page 406
    The ducking of goody grill
        Page 407
        Page 408
        Page 409
        Page 410
        Page 411
        Page 412
        Page 413
        Page 414
        Page 415
        Page 416
        Page 417
    Off for slumberland
        Page 418
    Comedies for children
        Page 419
        Page 420
        Page 421
        Page 422
        Page 423
        Page 424
        Page 425
    An old doll
        Page 426
        Page 427
        Page 428
    Fifteen minutes with a cyclone
        Page 429
        Page 430
        Page 431
    The screech owl
        Page 432
    Noray and the ark
        Page 433
        Page 434
        Page 435
    Crowded out o' crofield
        Page 436
        Page 437
        Page 438
        Page 439
        Page 440
        Page 441
        Page 442
        Page 443
        Page 444
        Page 445
        Page 446
        Page 447
    "Thereby hangs a tail"
        Page 448
        Page 449
    Mother nature's babes in the wood
        Page 450
        Page 451
    The letter-box
        Page 452
        Page 453
        Page 454
    The riddle-box
        Page 455
        Page 456
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
    Spine
        Spine
Full Text









































4-


ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.

(SEE PAGE 374.)


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ST. NICHOLAS.


VOL. XVII.


MARCH, 1890.


ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.

By HARRY PERRY ROBINSON.


WE had no
.- "warning.
......It was as if
S l jo they had de-
liberately lain
.I ,in ambush for
us at the turn
-in the trail.
They seemed
suddenly and silently to
rise on all sides of the sleigh at once.
It is not often that the gray timber-wolves,
or "black wolves," as the mountaineers call
them, are seen hunting in packs, though the
animal is plentiful enough among the foot-hills
of the Rockies. As a general rule they are met
with singly or in pairs. At the end of a long
and severe winter, however, they sometimes
come together in bands of fifteen or twenty;
and every old mountaineer has a tale to tell,-
perhaps of his own narrow escape from one of
their fierce packs, perhaps of some friend of
his who started one day in winter to travel
alone from camp to camp, and whose clean-
picked bones were found beside the trail long
afterward.
It was in February, and we, Gates and my-
myself, were driving from Livingston, Montana,
to Gulch City, fifty miles away, with.a load of


camp supplies-a barrel of flour and some
bacon, coffee, and beans; a blanket or two,
and some dynamite (or giant powder," as the
miners call it) for blasting; a few picks and
shovels, and other odds and ends. We had
started at daybreak. By five o'clock in the
evening, with some ten miles more to travel, the
worst of the trail was passed. There had been
little snow that winter, so that even in the gulches
and on the bottoms the exposed ground was
barely covered; while, on the steep slopes,
snow had almost entirely disappeared, leaving
only ragged patches of white under over-
hanging boughs, and a thin coating of ice in
the inequalities of the hard, frost-bound trail,
making a treacherous footing for the horses'
hoofs.
The first forty miles of the road had lain en-
tirely over hills,-zigzagging up one side of a
mountain only to zigzag down the other,-with
the dense growth of pine and tamarack and
cedar on both sides, wreathed here and there in
mist. But at last we were clear of the foot-hills
and reached the level. The tall forest trees
gave place to a wilderness of thick underbrush,
lying black in the evening air, and the horses
swung contentedly from the steep grade into
the level trail, where at last they could let their
legs move freely in a trot.


Copyright, i89o, by THE CENTURY Co. All rights reserved.
371


No. 5.





ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.


Hardly had they settled into their stride,
however, when both animals shied violently to
the left side of the trail. A moment later they
plunged back to the right side so suddenly as
almost to throw me off into the brush.
Then, out of the earth and the shadow of
the bushes, the grim, dark forms seemed to rise
on all sides of us. There was not a sound,-
not a snap nor a snarl; but in the gathering twi-
light of the February evening, we saw them
moving noiselessly over the thin coat of snow
which covered the ground. In the uncertain
light, and moving as rapidly as we did, it was
impossible to guess how many they were. An
animal which was one moment in plain sight,
running abreast of the horses, would, the next
moment, be lost in the shadow of the bushes,
while two more dark, silent forms would edge
up to take its place. So, on both sides of us,
they kept appearing and disappearing. In the
rear, half a dozen jostled one another to push up
nearer to, the flying sleigh,- a black mass that
filled the whole width of the trail. Behind
those again, others, less clearly visible, crossed
and recrossed the roadway from side to side.
They might be twenty in all or thirty or
forty. It was impossible to tell.
For a minute I did not think of danger.
The individual wolf is the most skulking and
cowardly of animals, and only by some such
experience as we had that night does a hunter
learn that wolves can be dangerous. But soon
the stories of the old mountaineers came crowd-
ing into my mind, as the horses, terrified and
snorting, plunged wildly along the narrow trail,
while the ghost-like forms glided patiently
alongside-appearing, disappearing, and re-
appearing. The silent pertinacity with which,
apparently making no effort, they kept pace
beside the flying horses was horrible. Even
a howl or a yelp or a growl would have been
a relief. But not so much as the sound of their
footfalls on the snow was to be heard.
At the first sight of the wolves, I had drawn
my revolver from the leather case in which it
hung suspended from my belt. Gates, hand-
ling the reins, was entirely occupied with the
horses; but I knew, without need of words, that
he saw our pursuers and understood the peril
as well as I.


Have you your gun ?" I shouted in his ear.
A negative shake of the head was all the
answer. So we must trust to the six cartridges
in my revolver.
"How many wolves are there, do you sup-
pose? again I called.
Again he shook his head, as if to say that he
could not guess.
So the minutes passed and we swept on, ris-
ing and falling and swaying with the inequali-
ties in the trail. The dark forms, growing more
indistinct each minute, were hanging doggedly
to the sleigh.
Suddenly I became aware that a wolf was
almost at my elbow; its head was on a level with
my waist as I sat in the low sleigh. In the
darkness I could plainly see the white teeth,
and the dim circle of the eyes. I hardly had
to lean over at all to place the muzzle of the
revolver within a foot of the great round head
before I fired. I saw the black form roll over
and over in the snow as we went by. Simul-
taneously, two other shadowy shapes that had
been running abreast of the horses, in advance
of the animal that was shot, dropped back;
and looking over my shoulder I could see
them throw themselves upon their wounded
fellow. As the sea-gulls, following in the wake
of a vessel in mid-ocean, swoop from all
directions upon some floating scrap that has
been thrown overboard, so from both sides of
the trail the dark figures rushed together into
one struggling mass behind the sleigh; and for
the first time we heard them snapping and
snarling at one another, as they tore their com-
rade to pieces.
The horses appeared to know that in some
way a gleam of hope had come. They ceased
plunging and seemed to throw all their energies
into putting as wide a space as possible between
them and the yelping pack behind.
How long would the respite be ? Seconds
passed until half a minute had gone. Then a
minute. Could it be that they had left us -
that the horrible race was over ?
But even as the hope was forming itself in
my mind, I became aware of a dim, gray thing
moving beside me. A moment later another
appeared, close by the horses' heads, and behind
us the trail was again full of the jostling pack.


[MAR.


372





ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.


It was terrible beyond expression, the utter
noiselessness with which they resumed their
places,--apparently tireless; keeping pace with
the racing horses without a sign of effort; patient
as fate itself. Have you ever been on a fast
steamship -say a P. and 0."* boat in Indian
waters where the sea is transparent-and, lean-
ing over the stern, watched a shark following
the vessel? If so, you remember how, hour
after hour and day after day, the dark, vaguely
outlined body, not more distinct than the shadow
of a cloud upon the waves, stayed, motionless to
all appearance, just so many feet aft in the ship's
wake, no matter how fast she moved. To me,
and I think to every one who has seen it, that
silent, persistent, haunting presence is the very
embodiment of ruthlessness and untiring cruelty.
There, in the twilight and shadow, was the same
silence, the same indistinctness, the same awing
impression of motionless speed, the same horror
of the inevitable, in that pursuit by the wolves.
But soon their tactics changed. Either they
had grown bolder, or the wolf they had eaten
among them had put a keener edge upon their
appetites. There were now four or five of the
ghostlike forms moving abreast of the horses on
my side of the sleigh alone. On the other side
more were visible. They were now closing in
upon us, with determination. Suddenly I saw
one make a spring at the throat of the off horse,
and, missing his aim, fall back. The horses
had been terrified before; from that moment
they lost all control of themselves. Neither
the driver's voice nor his hands upon the reins
had any influence upon them as they tore wildly
down the narrow path between the bushes,
snorting, throwing their heads from side to side,
and breaking now and again into short, shrill
neighs of terror. The breath from their nos-
trils and the steam from their bodies made a
white cloud in the wintry night air, almost
enveloping them and us, and at times blotting
out of sight the wolves beneath.
But the pack was again closing in. In front of
all, I could see one running under the very noses
of the horses, keeping just beyond the reach of
their hoofs, and evidently waiting for the right
moment to make a final leap at their throats.
Leaning forward, and steadying my aim as well
as I could in the rocking sleigh, I fired full at


the whole dark mass in front. Apparently the
ball passed harmlessly through them, but in an
instant all had vanished- behind and into the
bushes as a swarm of flies vanish at the wav-
ing of a handkerchief. Only for a second,
however, and one after another they were back
again.
A second shot, fired again at random into the
mass, was more successful; and once more we
saw them drop back and crowd together in the
trail behind us while the snapping and snarling
grew fainter as the horses plunged on.
Half of the last ten miles had now been
traveled, and five miles more would bring us to
Gulch City and security. The excitement of
that race was unspeakable: the narrow lane of
the trail lying white ahead of us and behind us
between the dark borders of the brush, seen
fitfully through the steam from the maddened
horses.
But the respite this time was shorter than be-
fore. Once more our relentless foes gathered
round us, silently, one by one. The wolves
seemed to know as well as we, that time was
short and escape lay not far away; for hardly
had the pack settled in their places round us be-
fore I saw one animal throw himself recklessly
at the horses' throats. There was a sudden
mad rearing up of both the horses, a wild, de-
spairing neigh, a short yelp from the wolf's
throat, and the dark form that had seemed to
hang for a moment, leech-like, to the chest of
one of our brave beasts was beaten down under
the hoofs.
The others did not wait even for the sleigh to
pass, but leaped upon the struggling form even
as the runners were upon it. In my excitement
I did a foolish thing. Leaning over, and thrust-
ing my revolver almost against the skins of the
fierce brutes, I fired two shots in quick succes-
sion. They had their effect, I know, for I saw
one of the dark figures throw itself convulsively
out of the mass into the brush, where others
sprang upon it, and a death-cry went up in the
night air. But we could ill spare the ammuni-
tion.
SThis idea evidently occurred to Gates. Lean-
ing suddenly toward me, but with his eyes fixed
on the horses and the road ahead, he called:
How many shots have you left?"


*Peninsular and Oriental.






ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.


"Only one."
Not even one apiece for us ?"
And I knew that he was in earnest. I knew
also that he was right; that it would be better
to die so, than to be torn to pieces by that
snarling, hungry crew.
But it was too late now. Five shots out of
the six were spent, and twenty minutes yet must
pass before we could reach the camp. And
even while these few words were being said
the pack was close upon us again. Fiercer
now, and more determined than ever to make
an end of it, they crowded around. One even
flung himself at the low side of the sleigh to
snap at me, and his teeth caught for a moment
in the sleeve of my coat as I struck him on the
head with the clenched hand holding the pistol.
On both sides, too, they jostled each other, to
reach the flying horses, and I knew that in a few
seconds more I must sacrifice the last cartridge
in my revolver.
As a forlorn hope I snatched the buffalo-robe
which lay on Gates' knees, and threw it to them.
But they hardly stopped to tear it to pieces.
There was more satisfying food in the sleigh.
And they closed around the horses again.
For the first time Gates turned to look at me.
"Jack! he called excitedly, "the giant
powder!"
For a moment I did not grasp his meaning.
Seeing my indecision he shouted again:
"The giant powder, Jack!"
Then it came to me. Thrusting the pistol
into its case, I scrambled over into the rear
part of the sleigh, and as I did so the wolves
that were following behind fell back a few feet.
Hastily fumbling among the various supplies,
I found the old sack in which the sticks of dyna-
mite were wrapped, and with them the small
package of caps and fuse. Taking three of the
sticks, I tied them tightly together with my
handkerchief and, quickly fitting the end of an
inch of fuse-for, in this case, the shorter the
piece the better-into a cap, I thrust the latter
into the center of the three sticks. I was still
at work, when a sudden swing of the sleigh and
a cry from Gates warned me that something
was the matter. The horses were plunging
violently, and as the near horse reared I saw
that a wolf had leaped upon its withers and was


clinging, with its teeth apparently in the side
of the horse's neck. In their terror, the horses
had stopped, and were actually backing us into
the brush. Something had to be done, and with
some vague hope, I fired the last shot from the
revolver into the dark circle which already sur-
rounded the plunging horses. The shot had its
effect, for one of the brutes leaped into the air
with a yelp and fell backward into the bushes.
The horse, too, sprang suddenly forward, and the
wolf that was clinging to it fell to the ground and
was trampled under the hoofs. In an instant,
those of the pack that had not already flung
themselves upon the wounded animal in the
bushes, rushed upon this one that was lying
lifeless or stunned from the horses' feet; and
once more, for a few seconds, we had breathing
space, and the sleigh sped along through the
keen air, our enemies snarling and quarreling
behind us.
But the last shot was spent!
Turning my attention again to the giant pow-
der, I fixed the cap and fuse more firmly in
their place, and taking off my belt wound that
tightly round the whole. Round that again I
wrapped one of the old sacks, and tearing off
my coat made an extra covering of that, knot-
ting the sleeves tightly on the outside, that the
ravenous teeth might be delayed in tearing the
bundle apart. Crouching down in the sleigh, I
lighted a match, and, as I did so, I saw that the
wolves were upon us again, apparently as nu-
merous and as tireless as ever. The match went
out; and a second. Crouching lower still, I
made a barricade against the wind with any-
thing I could lay my hands on in the sleigh,
and at last a dull red spark caught the end of
the fuse.
The pack was already crowding round the
terrified horses, which, it seemed to me, were
almost worn out, and moved more heavily than
heretofore. And how slowly the fuse burned!
Nursing it carefully with my hands, I blew upon
the spark and kept it glowing as it ate its way
slowly into the cotton. Why had I not made
it shorter ? Every moment I expected to feel
the sudden jolt which told that the wolves had
pulled down one of the horses and that the end
had come!
At last the dull red glow had almost reached


[MAR.





ON A MOUNTAIN TRAIL.


the end of the cap. A few seconds more and it
would explode. Thrusting the bundle hastily
into another sack, forgetting even the wolves
in my terror lest it should explode in my
hands, I threw it with all my force into the
midst of the moving forms abreast of the horses.
The beasts flung themselves upon it, and as
we swept by, the whole pack was again collected
into a struggling, snarling heap beside the trail.
We were sweeping round a curve in the road,


grim, gray, ruthless forms reappear ? The sec-
onds passed; minute followed minute, and the
horses, breathing painfully, labored on over the
level trail. With every yard traveled, hope
grew stronger, until leaning over again I said
to Gates:
I don't believe they 're coming, Charlie."
But his only reply was a shake of the reins
and another word to the horses.
Then suddenly there came a twinkle of light


I *.. .-, ', i .
,-, .
V' 'f


THE EXPLOSION.


Sand before the horses had taken a dozen strides,
the brush shut out the path behind us and the
wolves.
A moment later and the air and the earth
shook around us. I was still half standing,
clutching the low side of the sleigh, and the
concussion threw me upon my face. The re-
port was not the crash of a cannon nor the sharp
noise of gunpowder, but a dull, heavy roar like
an instantaneous clap of distant thunder. The
stillness that followed was intense, but I thought
that I heard, from the direction where the
wolves had been, one broken, muffled howl.
What had been the effect of it ? Both Gates
and myself leaned forward and with voice and
hand urged the horses on. When would those


in the distance. The brush fell away from the
trail and the white expanse of the clearing of
Gulch City was before us.


For a distance of fifty yards, at a point about
a mile and a half north of Gulch City, the old
Livingston trail had to be abandoned. It would
have been more labor to repair it than to clear
a new pathway through the brush. And when
I left that part of the country two years after-
ward, the packers would still turn out of their
way for a minute to look at Giant Hole," and
to kick up out of the weeds and brush that had
grown around it the skull or part of the skele-
ton of a wolf.


375
































A LITTLE man, pressed for a song,
Could not be induced by the throng.
"I 'm sorry," he said,
With a shake of his head,
"But I 've not brought my music along.


4'







a~


"It 's a pity it happens just so,
For you 'd all like my tenor, I know;
So high it can rise
That I oft close my eyes
So terribly dizzy I grow.


"The musical scale, as you see,
Has the letters from A up to G;
And, if it were set
Through the whole alphabet,
I believe I could go up to Z!"
















THE CROWS' MILITARY DRILL.


BY AGNES FRASER SANDHAM.


SHAVE never shared
the farmer's hatred of
the crow. There is an
air of aggressive inde-
pendence about him
which I like, and I find
a certain dignity in
his glossy black coat
I 'e s which compels my
respect. Even his
unmusical voice is not without power and mean-
ing, and at all events it compels attention.
One September day, while I was in the beau-
tiful English "Lake Region," I heard repeated
cawings high in air, and saw a great number of
crows flying about in so singular a manner that
I soon began to suspect that their actions were
directed to some special purpose. There was a
gentleman present who was a keen observer of
nature and skilled in the secrets of animal and
vegetable life. I asked him what the crows
were doing. He watched them for a few mo-
ments, and then said, gravely, "They are going
through their military drill."
Seeing by my expression that I did not take
his answer seriously, he repeated it reassuringly
and asked:
Did you never hear of the crows' military
drill ? "
No," I answered. "What is it ?"
His explanation was so interesting to me that
I have written it, as nearly as possible, in his
own words.
He said:
In consequence of ill health, when I was a
boy, I had been sent away for a whole year to
rusticate, and stayed at a farm occupying high


ground on the borders of the great Chateaugay
Forest, along the dividing line between New
York and Canada. There I had an opportunity
to study the habits and peculiarities of the crow,
and I was not at all prepared for the wonderful
sagacity shown by these birds.
"Across the road, directly in front of the house,
there were thick woods, the remains of the pri-
meval forest. Here rose high in air many giant
hemlocks, and, on account of their commanding
position, these were a favorite resort of crows.
Every night they would gather in great num-
bers, and, toward the fall, their incessant caw-
ing, during the evening hours, became really
deafening. I had an odd neighbor, Ned Greer
by name, but better known by his sobriquet
of' Old Powder and Shot,' owing to the fact
that he was never seen without his fire-arms.
This old hunter had been born and brought
up on the borders of civilization, and hunting
was his life. Give him his gun and his traps,
and Ned was happy; without them, he would
declare, without reservation, that life was not
worth living. I remarked to him that the crows
seemed to be holding a convention. Like all
men who have lived long either at sea or in the
depths of the forest, Ned was slow of speech.
So, after waiting a proper length of time to think
of his answer, he remarked, They 're a-drilling
for their journey south.'
About a year before I had enrolled my name
as member of a volunteer company, and had
spent weary hours going through what the old
soldiers called the 'goose-step.' So the word
'drilling' fixed my attention, and I resolved to
study the crows and to find out, if possible, how
they managed their goose-step.'






THE CROWS' MILITARY DRILL.


"The next evening, therefore, I stowed myself
away by the side of an old stone fence which
commanded a good view of the hemlock woods.
Before long, the crows began to assemble from
all points of the compass, but I could make out
nothing but that they seemed to be exercising
their wings. At intervals a few would leave
their roosts upon the boughs, and after flying in
a circle of a few hundred feet return to the
branches. Thus far I had not observed any
change from their usual habits, and I returned
home disappointed.
In the morning I reported to the old hunter
that he had been fooling me, and said that the
drilling of crows was a humbug!' After look-
ing at me in silence for an unusual length of
time (even for him), he remarked sententiously,
'Things is interesting to folks as knows some-
thing.'
I was silenced, whether owing to his gram-
mar or to his philosophy I could not decide;
now I am inclined to think it was the con-
temptuous satire of the remark, that subdued
me. But, at the time, his scorn had the result
of making me resolve to learn by observation
all that was to be learned about crows.
"That evening found me again at my post,
and this time I discovered that, amid the hubbub
of cawing, one hoarser voice predominated. I
also made another discovery: that always after
this loud voice had spoken, a number of the
birds would leave the trees for their circular
flight, and that each of these detachments would
return to the same tree it had left. It became
quite evident, therefore, that there was method
in their actions, and, moreover, that one crow
was in command.
Next day I again reported to Ned Greer.
"' Yes,' said the hunter, that same old crow
has been the General ever since I can remember;
he knows all about the business.'
"' How can he keep so much knowledge in
so small a head?' I inquired.
"'You see, my boy, that old chap's head has
such little room to rent that to live without
crowding it, he 's got to disremember about as
much every day as you can learn in a year.'
From this you will see that old Ned was not
very enthusiastic concerning the brilliancy of my
intellect. Perhaps this was owing in some


measure to the fact that he could, if so disposed,
shoot off the head of a crow at a few hundred
feet, while I could scarcely hit a barn door at
the same distance; a fact of which I was begin-
ning to think the crows were aware, from the
apparent contempt with which they regarded
my presence as I sat night after night watching
them.
During my many conversations with the
old hunter I found there were only two objects
in nature which caused any animation in him.
One was the 'wild bob-cat,' which he hated;
the other the crow, which he seemed to hold in
a sort of superstitious veneration-a feeling only
equaled by that of the Zufii Indians, in their
worship of the cunning of the fox.
Night after night I watched the crows, until
at last it became certain that the old crow, with
the stentorian lungs, was in absolute command
and had his forces well under control. After
about a week more of training, they began to
show undoubted signs of excellent discipline.
At the command of the leader, a flock of a'dozen
or more took wing and described a much larger
circle than ever before. Until they were about
two hundred feet from the rest, comparative
silence reigned among the remaining host; but
then, suddenly, came several loud, sharp tones
from the leader, and about as many more left
the trees. This time the new division separated
into two equal bodies, and flew off at right angles
for a short distance. Then, in response to an-
other caw, they turned in the same direction as
the advance-guard, who were now some distance
away. After a few moments had elapsed, the
word of command was again given, and all the
crows arose in a body and followed the lead of
the advance-guard, the old chieftain being well
to the front; but I noticed that he did not fly
so fast as the main body, and they gradually
passed him. Now,' I thought, he may be the
crow with the most acute brain, but he certainly
lacks the strength of wing to keep to the front,'
-for by this time he was among the stragglers
bringing up the rear. But before long the air
again resounded with the hoarse Caw Caw !'
and immediately the apparently abandoned trees
sent forth a very creditable rear-guard. These
last crows rose and scattered themselves into
open skirmishing order.


378


[MAR.





THE CROWS' MILITARY DRILL.


"Then the General at once proved to me I
had been very foolish in drawing hasty conclu-
sions concerning his wing power, for he at once
forged ahead, plowing his way rapidly, until he
reached the main body and took a leading po-
sition. By this time the advance-guard had
completed their circle and were fluttering round
in smaller circles preparatory to alighting upon
their old perches; but the vigilant eye of their
leader detected this attempt, and a caw of com-
mand sent them forth to duty again. The old
fellow was a perfect old martinet, so far as drill
was concerned. Up to this time, he had taken
things somewhat easily, as it had been only
company drill; but now, it was the all-impor-
tant battalion drill, and therefore there was no
shirking allowed.
"The word to halt was soon given, however,
and each detachment, perched upon its camp-
ing trees, awaited orders. As if it was perfectly
understood that after drill they were to 'roost
at ease,' a terrible cawing commenced. It
seemed that each crow meant to let them all
understand that he was the best-drilled bird in
the brigade.
"You will perceive that by this time I had
learned something, and, according to old Ned's
remark, 'Things were interesting.' I became
very curious to know more, but had to wait
until the following evening. Next time there
was another advance; for, when the regiment
received the order to march, there was no sign
of their halting in their flight; but, after scurry-
ing around the circle once or twice, at a sign
from the leader some of them left the main
body and flew ahead till they reached the ad-
vance-guard and the right and left wings of scouts
took their places. The birds then on duty slack-
ened their flight and gradually rejoined the
main body. The same thing was repeated by
the rear-guard. It became evident that the
General not only intended to guard his army,
but also had arranged to relieve those who
were sent out upon this special duty. In fact,
no human general could have thought out all
probable contingencies and prepared for them
better than did this old black crow.'
Next day, feeling encouraged by the 'pride
that cometh by knowledge,' I reported to my
neighbor what I knew about crows. For a mo-


ment there was a decided relaxation of his usual
set expression as he soliloquized thus: Mebbe
he '11 larn something yet!' Under these circum-
stances I felt encouraged to ask a question which
had been puzzling me for some time.
"'Now, Ned, when do you think they will
finally start south?'


S.-- 5... -.. '-
S ---- -


"The usual pause ensued; then he asked:
"' Did you say, boy, that the old chap was
teaching them to take spells watching out for
danger ?'
"'Yes,' I replied; 'he certainly relieved
guard last night.'






380


THE CROWS' MILITARY DRILL.


[MAR.


.-*e to be u .i i.. .. ... h :. 4j : u on it






l an nly u ll i t ihi1'. -i- ante .lir e -.. .) on re-



asire C ..:. A l t 1i st, loot mini- ....ir. l -Of am i'l, a cold
lie pn;lred if oi. aon r-, irl a r t .h-i h. % music reha
seeasithe ra n I" aLd lta. Drte-r pin d I Giir ita ty favorite
mos[e other thanta cue thbe mo hr I" : vementot wg
iariei tie rr :. t d the i .i:,ri ..cs r 'ir one crowinit td nowt



ri' r .r l~irit ir.-' 'ire t a r I i i,-r. i i 'i* s on
i hat. r i,.l l n i.... i I. :ri .i ,i- t hi e rlt i in uiks looked
t-dhe bett-r oi n I ,the-l :t1i;- -itln r t. l ..rified to













two later during the first snow-storm. After waiting for some
THE ARMY DEPARTS. time, the voice of the General sounded forth the order to


due south, flying on a horizontal plane only a few feet higher than the trees they had left. At
the word, the other guards flew out as right and left wings, but maintaining the same height in the
air as the pioneers; -in fact, all appeared as if moving along an invisible railroad track. As soon
as the advance parties had taken their posts, the General gave the signal starting the main army in
motion. There was now little or no noise other than that caused by the movement of their wings.
In response to an order given by the leader at the head, and passed from one crow to another
at irregular intervals along the line, the rear-guard took their position in a somewhat scattered
and fan-like shape.
"I glanced down the hillside, and, some distance away, noticed a farmer directly in their line
of march. He held something in his hand, but he was so far off it was difficult to tell whether
it was a gun, a pitchfork, or merely a stick. I am inclined to think it was a gun, judging from
the military precautions of the crows. One of the leading birds in the advance-guard gave a






THE CROWS' MILITARY DRILL.


sharp 'Caw!' and immediately rose several
hundred feet higher. The warning was rapidly
passed back, and the whole army rose up to the
new line of flight. Here I noticed a difference
between the tactics of soldiers and those of the
crows. At the word of command the whole
command of crows raised their grade of flight.
In the volunteer regiment, to which I then be-
longed, we would have altered our line of march
only as each company reached the point at which
the first company had been ordered to change
its course.
"After the crows passed over the object of
their suspicion, a series of caws were given, but
whether by the rear-guard, after they realized
they were past the danger, or in response to the
leader, the distance between us was too great
for me to decide. Whichever it was, they all
gradually settled down to the level they had
taken when starting from the trees, and this


-


they kept until they became a gray cloud in
the distance and then melted out of sight in the
glowing southern sky.
"I faced toward the house, and was struck
by the absolute silence and loneliness that had
fallen on everything.
It was with a hearty welcome I greeted the
time-scarred face of Ned Greer, whom I saw
approaching with his queer rambling gait.
"' How far do you suppose those crows will
travel to-day, Ned ?' I asked.
"' Mebbe fifty miles, more or less.'
"As he started to walk away, the sense of
loneliness again took possession of me, and I
ran after him, feeling that I needed companion-
ship more than my breakfast. What are you
going to do next?' was my question. 'Well,
it 's time to attend to the winter traps. I 'm
convinced that those crows know pretty well
when winter's near.'"


C-
C-


THE IMPERIOUS YAWN.

By HENRY MOORE.


Two rosy lips each other press
And two deep dimples deeper make;
Two eyes, with struggling lids, confess
'T is hard to keep themselves awake;
Two rosy lips more tightly drawn,-
The little lady will not yawn.


Two rosy lips that slowly yield,
And part, and meet, and part anew;
Two eyes, whose drooping lids are sealed
As flowers close when falls the dew;
Alas! her will not" all is gone,-
The little lady needs must yawn.


1890.]

















=, ./%.-
1 -9
'/'


"1
A -,


By SUSAN CURTIS REDFIELD.


JACK had no father nor mother. That's bad
to begin with, is n't it? Worse than that, he
could not remember the time when he ever had
any. His mother died when he was a tiny
baby, and before he was two years old the
father died, so he was left quite alone.
After the funeral, Uncle Hiram took Jack
home with him, "to bring up with his girls," he
said. Aunt Rachel opened her arms wide to
receive the little child, and, as for the girls, there
was never a king who had a more willing and
adoring court than Jack had in these same
girls.
Very soon Jack began to imagine that he
was a wonderful being, and by the time he was
five years old he was fully convinced that there
never was such a boy. There was perfect har-
mony between the family and little Jack, because
they all felt that nothing was too much to do
for him, and Jack felt just so himself.
Uncle Hiram was rather an irritable man, but
he had a warm heart, and there was a very soft
spot there for his sister's boy. I can't refuse
that boy anything," he often said. "That 's
Emily's smile, and those eyes too are Emily's."
Dear Aunt Rachel never refused anybody
anything.
When Jack was eight years old, he was sent
to school. To his surprise he found that the
teacher did not pay him any unusual respect,
and that the boys behaved as if they thought
they were as good as he. In fact, some of
them talked as if they even dared to consider
themselves a little better; and before the week
was over Jack heard himself called Stuffy,"


" Dude," or "the Roberts girls' doll-baby," in the
most familiar manner. Before he had been in
the school two weeks, he had actually been
flogged.
However, he was not a stupid boy, and he
soon found out that he must alter his conduct
at school if he wished to escape punishment and
nicknames. You see, Stuffy, this sort of thing
won't go down with us boys," said Bob King, a
boy twelve years old, and very much revered by
the small boys. Just keep those airs for Aunt
Rachel and the girls." And that is just what
Jack did do. He really lived the life of two
boys, the school boy and the home boy, and
you cannot imagine how different those two
boys were. The school boy was a jolly, active
boy, always ready for a game of ball or a run-
ning match, and willing also to take his share
of any work among the boys. He learned his
lessons pretty well, and kept out of scrapes
about as well as most of the boys. He was re-
spectful to his teacher, and it never seemed to
occur to him to dispute his authority or ques-
tion the propriety of his orders.
The home boy was a good-natured boy, too,
as long as there was no interference with his
plans or pleasures; but he was always tired; too
tired to bring in an armful of kindling for Aunt
Rachel, or to go after the milk for Cousin Alice.
If Uncle Hiram sent him out to cut the straw-
berry runners, he was soon seized with such a
terrible pain in his back that he could hardly
walk to the house. "I presume the boy is
tired," tender-hearted Aunt Rachel would say;
" he has been studying hard all day. I am afraid


.c_
'1 .,

'vly *
._ -{ , .





JACK'S CURE.


he will never be very strong. Poor Emily was
never able to work hard." Now Jack did not
look at all delicate, for he had a stout pair of
arms and very sturdy legs. His shoulders were
broad, and his cheeks were hard and red, and
there was n't a boy in the school who could run
so fast.
But these kind people could see no fault in
their boy. The warmest corner in the room
was for Jack, because he was out in the cold
so much. The largest piece of pie and the piece
of pudding that boasted the most raisins fell to
Jack, because he was growing so fast; and so
it went on till Jack was fourteen years old.
Then something happened. Uncle Hiram
woke up one day, rubbed his eyes hard, shook
himself a little to be sure that he was awake,
and then sat down to think and to wonder how
he could have slept so long, and have had such
strange dreams. He was still sitting by the
stove thinking, when Jack came in from school.
One idea had taken firm possession of his mind,
and that was that he had thoroughly spoiled
Emily's boy, and that he must undo the mis-
chief he had done, without a moment's delay.
"Jack," he said, rather sharply, "go out and
chop some kindlings."
Jack was neither surprised nor alarmed at the
sharpness of the tone. Uncle Hiram was ex-
pected to be a little cross when he had rheuma-
tism. So he tossed his books upon the table,
and answered carelessly:
"Oh, I can't to-night! I promised to meet
some fellows down here at Stoney-"
You won't meet any fellows, anywhere,"
interrupted Uncle Hiram, raising his voice,
"until you 've chopped that wood." Jack began
to open his eyes a little, but he soon recovered
from his surprise and began to make fresh objec-
tions. Now, see here," said Uncle Hiram,
rising from his chair, "I '11 have no more of
this; there are to be no loafers around my
place. Go straight out to the shed and chop
that wood."
Jack went, but he slammed the door after
him. Uncle Hiram sat down again, feeling a
little queer. He was very sure that he had done
his duty, and yet- Ah, Uncle Hiram, you
can never undo the work of twelve years in this
way!


From that day there was trouble enough in
the old house. Uncle Hiram was firm in his
resolve to reform Jack, and was as exacting as
he had been indulgent. Nobody was happy,
and probably he suffered more than any one
else, for he knew that something was not right.
He lay awake many a night grieving over the
sharp, hasty words he had spoken to the boy,
and resolving that he would be wiser and more
patient on the morrow. But each day seemed
to impress him more thoroughly with a sense of
Jack'sindolence and willfulness, and the troubled
old man grew constantly more irritable, often
magnifying Jack's offenses from his very anxi-
ety over him. The young man himself highly
resented the change, and soon became sullen
and moody. He had so long been accustomed
to do nothing at home that he disliked, and to
take the best of everything as a matter of course,
that he merely considered himself very ill-used
now that he was requested to alter his habits.
He therefore did simply what he dared not re-
fuse to do, and did it most ungraciously. Aunt
Rachel and the girls endeavored in a hundred
little ways to make up for Uncle Hiram's harsh-
ness, and although not a word was said Jack
felt that they were on his side. You see, every-
body was making a mistake in his or her way.
One Saturday afternoon, Jack was weeding
in the garden, brooding over his woes, and
lamenting bitterly that so gifted a young person
as himself should be doomed to weed in that
old garden and dig potatoes. Just then half a
dozen boys came rushing down the street, mak-
ing as much commotion and raising as much
dust as if they had been a troop of cavalry.
"Hullo there, Jacky," shouted one of them,
"come on, here 's a lark! Mr. Mayhew's colt
has run away, and he has offered five dollars to
any one who will bring it back safe and
sound." Away ran the boys, and away ran
Jack, dashing through the potato patch, and
kicking over the basket of potatoes in his haste.
There was more than one colt loose that Satur-
day afternoon. The boys did not find the miss-
ing animal, but a lark they certainly had.
But even boys tire out after a while, and vis-
ions of supper finally led their steps homeward.
Jack walked through the garden very slowly
and quietly, noting that the basket of potatoes




JACK'S CURE.


had been picked up and that Aunt Rachel's
flower-bed had been carefully weeded. He
dreaded to go into the house. In the doorway
stood his uncle. As Jack approached, he
stepped outside, closing the door behind him.
"I have a good mind not to let you into the
house, sir," he said sternly. "You don't de-
serve your supper nor your night's lodging."
















.
II



t4
l i
',.,:











DOROTHY BRINGS JACK HIS DINNER. (SEE P.
" Very well," answered Jack, I '11 not take
them then "; and without another word he turned
and walked away. I 'm not afraid that you
will stay away long," called Uncle Hiram. It is
pretty near supper-time, and you have never
learned to go without your supper, or earn one
either." Jack did not look back, but walked
steadily on out of the gate and down the street.
His uncle stood watching him till he was out of
sight; then he turned and went into the house.
Aunt Rachel was sitting by the open window,
looking pale and troubled.


'I'


AGE 387.)


am afraid you have gone a little too far,
I," she said. "The boy has done wrong,
v; but what you said stung him wonder-

h, nonsense,--never fear. He '11 beback
soon," said Uncle Hiram, trying to speak
ssly. "A boy is not likely to run away
it a cent in his pocket."
They delayed the supper
until it was useless to wait
any longer. Then they sat
down, but no one ate much.
After supper Uncle Hiram
put on his coat and went out
S "to take a little stroll," he
said. On one pretext or an-
L. other, the anxious cousins
visited all the houses where
S Jack was known to be inti-
mate, but received no tidings
of Jack. Not one of them
hinted to any one that Jack
could have run away. Ten
S o'clock came and eleven
S o'clock, but no Jack; and
the Roberts family passed a
sleepless night.
I will tell you now what
sort of a night Jack passed.
i We left him walking rapidly
through the principal street
of the little town. In his
i first excitement, he walked
straight ahead, on and on,
scarcely knowing where he
was going. After he had.
walked about five miles in
this way he began to feel
ired, and sat down on a large stone by
le of the road. He soon realized that he
so hungry, and resolved that he would
r some supper and a night's lodging at
:xt farm-house. The miserable thought
lashed upon him that he had no money
ihich to pay for such luxuries. Jack was
to confess to himself that he had not run
in proper style. He had read thrilling
)f runaway boys, but he did not at the
nt recall any boy who had been so indis-
and short-sighted as to leave home with-





JACK'S CURE.


out a bundle of clothes and some money in his
pocket.
Just then he heard the sound of wheels and
of horses' hoofs, and, looking up, saw a pair of
powerful horses, and then a large wagon, whose
only occupant was a young man, much tanned
and freckled.
"Where are you going?" Jack asked the
man.
"I am going home."
"Where is home ?" asked Jack, again.
"Mr. Andrews's farm, fifteen miles around the
mountain. Do you want a ride?"
Yes, I do," said Jack; and without further
remark he jumped into the wagon. They left
the main road very soon, and began slowly to
wind around the mountain. The drive was
charming, but Jack was in no mood to admire
scenery. Fortunately for him his companion
was not a loquacious individual, and so he was
not annoyed by questions. The daylight soon
faded away, and the evening crept on. By the
time they reached the farm-house the moon
was shining in her full glory, so that Jack could
see his surroundings very plainly.
I stop here," said the man.
"All right!" responded Jack, feeling that
everything was all wrong for him. "I 'm much
obliged."
He jumped out of the wagon and started off
very briskly, but he had no intention of going
far.
As soon as he saw that the man had left his
team and gone to the house, he made a grand
run for the great barn, whose interior could be
plainly seen in the moonlight.
"Here's my only chance for the night,"
thought he to himself. I must reach that barn
before it is locked." (Town boys are sometimes
a little ignorant regarding country ways, and
Jack did not know that farmers seldom lock their
barns.) He had just time to hide himself in the
hay before the farmer's man came out of the
house and prepared to unharness the horses.
How Jack trembled! What if that man should
need some of the hay, and drive a pitchfork into
him! But he was not molested, and soon the
great barn door was closed, and locked, as Jack
supposed, and Jack was left to his own reflec-
tions. They were not pleasant.
VoL. XVII.-46.


I am a tramp, that is just what I am," he
exclaimed aloud, bitterly. "Here I am spend-
ing the night in a barn. Soon I shall be rob-
bing hen-roosts and clothes-lines. What if the
barn should take fire while I 'm locked up here ?
Tramps are always being burned in barns";
and Jack remembered with horror the poor
fellow whom he had seen at the hospital. He
made up his mind that he would stay awake all
night to watch; instead of which, he went to
sleep almost immediately and slept till morning.
It was very bright when he awoke. At first he
was greatly surprised to find himself in such a
place, but all the misery of the evening before
soon came back to him.
He crept stealthily down from the hay-mow,
looking toward the door, which he saw was
open. He saw no one in the yard, and made
his way as quickly as possible to the open road.
He felt weak and faint; scarcely able to walk;
and remembered, then, that he had had no supper
the night before, and was not likely to have any
breakfast this morning, unless he begged for it.
He soon decided that he must have something
to eat, and turned his steps again toward the
farm-house. As he approached the back door
he saw a bright young girl, apparently about
his own age, standing in the yard, evidently
preparing to feed the chickens.
Jack stepped up to her with all the gallantry
at his command, took off his hat, and then,
I 'm sorry to say, told the first lie he had ever
told in his life.
Good-morning," he said, very politely;
would you be good enough to give me a glass
of milk? I have come a long way this morn-
ing."
Yes," she replied, very gravely, "you must
be very tired; it's a long walk from our barn."
Jack grew very red, and turned as if to beat
a hasty retreat.
Don't be angry," she said, smiling at his con-
fusion. I '11 give you a glass of milk, and some
bread and butter, too; for you have not had
any breakfast, and I don't believe you know
where you are going to find any."
Jack could not deny the truth of her assertion,
and the girl looked so pretty and good-natured
that he thanked her and stood still. She went
to the house and soon returned, bringing a large


385


1890.]






JACK'S CURE.


bowl of milk, and a plate with two thick slices
of bread and butter on it.
"Here," she said; "sit down on the door-
step, and eat this."
Jack did as he was told; and, while he was
eating, the girl stood near him surveying him
critically. Presently she asked coolly:
"What made you run away?"
"How do you know I 've run away ?" re-
torted Jack, inclined to be provoked.
Now, don't be so quick," said the girl coax-
ingly. "You 're no tramp, you 're too well
dressed, and you 're a gentleman." (Jack was
pleased. Little Dorothy Andrews knew that
that remark would be received with satisfaction.)
"And young gentlemen are n't found sleep-
ing in barns Sunday morning, unless something
has gone wrong at home. I went into the barn
myself this morning to see if my bantam hen
had hidden her nest in the hay, and I found
you instead of the hen."
Jack looked around rather nervously. Now
Dorothy had quite a taste for adventure, and
very little opportunity to gratify it in her quiet
life on the farm. Here was a fully-fledged ro-
mance right at her very door. It was more ex-
citing than any story she had ever read. What
a handsome, polite boy he was, to be sure, and
how pale and tired he looked!
"You need not be afraid," she said, noticing
Jack's anxiety. Father and Mother are still
asleep, and Jonas has taken Don and gone for
the cows. If you will not tell me why you ran
away, perhaps you '11 tell me what you're going
to do. You might get sleepy or hungry again,"
she concluded mischievously, "and I might be
able to help you a little."
I don't know where I am going," said Jack;
"and I wish I were dead!"
Dorothy's heart gave a little skip of delight.
This was splendid A bit of high tragedy, too!
Her eyes sparkled with excitement and pleas-
ure, and she prepared to play the part of the
guardian angel.
Oh don't be so desperate," she exclaimed.
"There must be some one who 'd feel very sad
if you should harm yourself. Now, I 've a plan.
You can't go roaming around the country all
Sunday. People will be so surprised, you know.
You can't hire out to-day, if that's what you


mean to do; and everybody will ask you ques-
tions if you go tramping around."
Papa wants a boy to do chores," she added,
a little maliciously; "but he 's very particular
what sort of a boy he hires. He always asks for
a recommendation. I 'm afraid you would n't
do."
"What is your plan ? inquired Jack, a little
gruffly.
I '11 hide you in the barn until to-morrow
morning, and I '11 bring your food to you; but
you must be off early to-morrow morning, just
as soon as I 've given you your breakfast."
This was too humiliating! To be tucked away
in a barn over Sunday, and have his rations
brought to him by this saucy young country
girl, who was evidently having infinite amuse-
ment out of the incident, was rather more than
Jack's pride could bear.
"I won't do it," he exclaimed, flushing up.
"I '11 starve first and sleep in the street."
Oh, very well," she replied, tossing her little
head; "just as you please. But there 's Jonas
coming up the lane with the cows. I hear
Mamma coming down the back stairs, and if she
catches me here, talking with a strange boy on
the doorstep, I shall have an awful scolding.
I never ought to have spoken to you at all. It
was very wrong. Mamma will be so displeased.
Oh, dear!" said Dorothy, clasping her hands
in genuine distress. Jack gave a quick look
around.
"That kind little girl shall have no scolding
on my account," thought he.
His only way of escape was the barn; and
into it he dashed about as furiously as he had
the night before, running up the stairs two steps
at a time, and never stopping until he had
reached the tip-top of the hay-mow. There he
sat, directly under the roof, in a.dripping per-
spiration, the thistles pricking his legs and
hands.
"This is fine!" ejaculated Jack. "What
would the fellows say ? "
He soon made the interesting discovery that
two large spiders were swinging themselves
down from their homes in the roof, directly in
front of his face; and, seizing a handful of hay,
he made a ferocious attack upon all the spiders
within his reach.


[MAR.






But this occupation did not last long, and it
seemed to him that he had sat there many hours,
when he heard some one enter the barn. Jack's
heart stood still. But there was no occasion for
his terror. It was only Jonas, preparing to har-
ness the horses to the old-fashioned carriage, in
which the Andrews family always rode to church.
Soon he heard them drive away, and, strangely
enough, felt more desolate and unhappy than
before.
Here was a chance for escape; but after Jack
had again taken up his quarters in the barn, it
apparently never once occurred to him that he
could do anything but remain there until morn-
ing, as Dorothy had bidden. How different
this Sunday morning was from all others Jack
had ever known He did not like to think of
home and home friends, but he could not help
doing it. Had they all gone to church without
him? Would they tell that he had run away ?
Jack's face burned at the thought. It was not
a very heroic thing to run away after all. And
he began to feel an unexpected sense of shame,
which increased as the morning wore away.
The hours were long ones, but two o'clock
did come at last, and, soon after, the Andrews
family. The next half hour was an anxious one
to Jack, and he drew a long breath of relief
when Jonas finished his work in the barn and
left him with the horses.
Five minutes later he heard a light step on
the stairs, and in an instant Dorothy's curly
head appeared. She paused a moment when
half-way up the stairs, and looked around for
Jack.
I 'm up here," called Jack.
She started at the sound of his voice, and he
heard the rattle of dishes. A queer little smile
puckered her lips when she saw him, but she
made no reply, nor did she advance another
step, but raised her arms carefully and set a tray
upon the floor. Then she ran away. Jack was
not pleased.
She might have spoken to a fellow anyhow.
I have a good mind not to touch it," he said to
himself. But he was a growing boy, with a fa-
mous appetite, which as yet had not been im-
paired by his trouble. He thought soon that
he would just go and see what she had brought;
and so he slipped down to the floor, and stepped


89go.]


JACK'S


CURE. 387
softly to the stairway. The sight of eggs, pota-
toes, bread and butter, and milk made him for-
get his resolution, and he ate until there was
nothing left.
After his dinner, he walked very softly back
and forth for a long time in the great barn, for
his legs were stiff and cramped from sitting still
so long. Long before the walk was ended he had
owned to himself that he had been very un-
faithful the day before, and he could not won-
der that Uncle Hiram was displeased. He
remembered, too, how many times he had
neglected other light tasks set for him, and how
unpleasantly he had often answered his uncle.
He saw that he had done a silly and even wicked
thing in running away, for he well imagined
the distress at home. He was almost ready to
return to the kind people who had watched
over him ever since he could remember any-
thing. But Uncle Hiram's last mocking words
still stung him, and he said to himself that he
would not go home until he could prove to his
uncle that he could earn a supper, or go with-
out one, if necessary.
Tired out at last, he crept again into the hay
and cried himself to sleep. Dorothy came and
took away the tray, leaving a bowl of milk and
a plate of crackers in its place; but he did not
awake. The old barn grew dark, and then
bright again with moonlight, but he slept on,
forgetting all his troubles in pleasant dreams of
home and school.
He awoke with a start, and sat up, rubbing
his eyes. Ah! this was not home, and he should
not go to school to-day. But Jack did not
know that he was, even then, in the very best
school he had ever attended, and that he was
learning the most valuable lessons of his life.
He sat quite still for a few minutes, seemingly
undecided just what to do; then, sliding down

to the floor, he went toward the stairway which
he could see dimly in the gray morning light.
There he found the milk and crackers that
Dorothy had placed there while he slept. The
milk was still sweet, and he drank it all, putting
the crackers in his pockets. Then he went down
the stairs, and out of the barn. There was no
one awake yet. But the dog, which Jack
had not seen before, began to bark furiously at
sight of the stranger, and started toward him,





JACK'S CURE.


obliging that young gentleman to make his way
to the open road in a very undignified manner.
Dorothy, who was aroused from sleep by the
dog's barking, suspected at once the cause of
the disturbance, jumped out of her bed in great
fright, and ran to the window.
Oh, dear !" she thought; why did not that
dreadful boy do as he was told, and wait till
after breakfast? Don will bite him now, and
it will be all my fault."
The truth was that Dorothy had spent a very
uncomfortable Sunday. She had never had a
secret before, and she did not know what dis-
agreeable things they are. She was well aware
that both her father and mother would be seri-
ously displeased to learn that she had lodged an
unknown boy in the barn; and her guilty con-
science made her so unhappy that she longed
to tell her mother all about it. But she con-
cluded that would be very dishonorable to Jack,
as she had promised him safe-keeping and food.
She could think of nothing during church and
Sunday-school but that dreadful boy in the barn.
"How silly I was," she thought to herself.
"I wish he'd go away before we get home!
I 'm sure, I never wish to see him again. I '11
keep my promise, but I '11 not speak another
word to him."
Dorothy grew so melancholy and irritable
toward evening that her mother was seriously
alarmed.
I believe your liver is all out of order," she
said. "Come here to the window, child, and
let me look at the whites of your eyes, and see
whether they 're yellow." Dorothy obeyed.
Mrs. Andrews decided that the whites of
Dorothy's eyes were yellow, and that she was
very feverish; therefore she began to bustle
about and make preparations for Dorothy's im-
mediate relief. She soaked her feet in hot
water and mustard; put horse-radish leaves
over the spot where she supposed Dorothy's
liver to be; gave her a bowlful of steaming
boneset to drink; and tucked her up in bed at
exactly seven o'clock. "There," she said, as
she piled the blankets on poor Dorothy, "I guess
you '11 have a good sweat now, and that will
do you more good than all the doctor's stuff. I
dare say you '11 be all right in the morning."
As soon as her mother had left the room,


Dorothy began to cry. "This is just horrid,"
she sobbed. I was never so nearly melted in
my life. It is n't my liver, at all. It's just be-
cause I deceived Papa and Mamma. I '11 never
again care for anything romantic as long as I
live."
She did not cry long, however, for her mother's
energetic treatment had the effect of making her
very sleepy, and soon she was slumbering as
quietly as if she had passed the most common-
place day possible, being conscious of nothing
until she was startled by Don's furious barking
in the yard. By the time she reached the little
window, Jack was already running up the road,
and she crept back to bed again with a sigh of
relief.
After breakfast, Dorothy told her mother all
about it. Mrs. Andrews's consternation was
great; but Dorothy was so penitent that she
could not be very severe with her, and contented
herself with bringing to her daughter's mind all
sorts of possible and impossible things that might
have happened, and admonishing her never to
do such a thing again.
We left Jack running away from the dog.
This was by no means his only unpleasant ex-
perience during the morning. He asked for
work at several of the farm-houses, but every
one looked at him suspiciously, and told him
that no extra help was needed then.
At two o'clock in the afternoon he reached a
small, rather shabby house. It was the least
inviting of all the houses he had seen, but Jack
was so tired and discouraged that he was no
longer very particular. Near the house stood
the barn, and there he saw a man trying to
teach a calf to drink from a pail. He went up
to him and asked again for work.
"Why, no," responded the man, pausing in
his work and looking him well over; I don't
want any more help, and I don't believe you
are used to farm work any way. Do you know
how to milk? "
Jack was obliged to confess that he did not.
I '11 be bound you don't," returned the
man.
Jack's heart grew very heavy, but at the same
time a strange boldness came over him.
I must have work," he said desperately.
"Do let me do something here. I 'm almost


388


[MAR.




JACK'S CURE.


starved. I have n't any place to sleep, and
I 'm miles and miles away from home."
Well, now," ejaculated the farmer, "that's
too bad! But I don't know as I 'm bound to
keep you, for all that. If you were only a girl
now, we might let you stay for a while, for my
wife 's about sick, and wants some help."
Do let me stay," pleaded Jack; "I '11 do
anything."
Come along with me then," he said, turn-
ing the calf into a little stall and fastening it in.
He led the way to the house, and Jack fol-
lowed.
On entering the kitchen, Jack saw the farm-
er's wife hard at work over the wash-tub. In
the middle of the room was a cradle with a
baby in it.
I 've brought you a girl," said the man to
his wife.
The woman, who had a coarse and rather ill-
natured face, stared a moment, and then burst
into a loud laugh. Jack's blood boiled; but
he had agreed to do anything." So he said
nothing, and he soon found himself installed
as maid-of-all-work. He was to have nothing
but his lodging and board until he had proved
his useftilness.
"Now," said Mrs. Butler, "just take your
coat off and wring out those clothes for me."
Jack looked at the wash-tub with horror.
I don't know how," he answered feebly.
Mrs. Butler proceeded to show him with more
energy than could have been expected of a
woman in delicate health.
Jack went to work and did his best; but he
was a boy, and this was his first washing. He
splashed the water in every direction, dropped
one end of a sheet on the floor while he was
wringing out the other end, and brought upon
himself serious trouble by tossing the sheet
into the baby's cradle instead of into the
large clothes-basket. For a whole hour did
Mrs. Butler shout directions and warnings, but
in vain. Just as the last garment was wrung
out, Jack outdid himself by pushing the tub
off from the bench on which it stood. Mrs.
Butler caught up the baby, and Jack seized the
basket of clothes and ran out into the yard with
it, feeling that no more terrible calamity could
befall him than to be obliged to wring out all those


clothes again. He found a box of clothes-pins
in the yard and hung the clothes upon the line.
When he returned to the house he was ordered
in no gentle tones to sweep the water out into
the yard, and then to take a pail and mop and
see what he could do to dry the floor. Jack
made up his mind that he would rather wring
out clothes again, when he understood that he
must wring out that dreadful mop as fast as it
soaked up the water. Then he had to blacken
the stove, hot as it was, and after that was done,
it was time to wash the potatoes and put them
on to boil. Of course he put them over in
Mrs. Butler's preserving kettle, and let the water
boil out, so that the bottom of the kettle was
burned as well as the potatoes. Poor Jack!
This was new work indeed, and little suited to
his taste. Although he had eaten nothing since
his early breakfast in the barn, he was too com-
pletely tired out to have much appetite for the
supper of boiled potatoes and bread and milk.
As for Mrs. Butler, she declared that she was
never so "wore out" in her life, and that she
would rather have no help at all, than such help
as that stupid boy, who could not learn anything.
Jack was glad when the meal was over, for
Mr. Butler and his man made themselves quite
merry at his expense, and seemed to enjoy his
discomfiture.
However, fresh trials awaited him, for there
were dishes to be washed and a great many
milk-pails and pans, too; and so Jack's hands
were soon in the dish-pan.
It must be an awful thing to be a girl all the
time," said he to himself, shuddering inwardly
as he felt the bits of bread and potato floating
about in the greasy dish-water. How glad I
am that I was born a boy." He had always sup-
posed that women and girls had an easy time,
and had often said rather contemptuously to his
cousins, You don't do much. Men do all the
hard work in the world."
So you see it was not a bad thing for Jack to
learn something of the homely tasks which fill
the lives of many patient women. This expe-
rience in housework gave him a wholesome
respect for many things and many people, and
he was a better man for it all his life.
Well, awkward as he was, the dishes were at
last all put away in the pantry, and there was a


389





JACK'S CURE.


row of shining tin pails and pans on the shelf
behind the stove, so that he could go to the
room over the kitchen, to which Mrs. Butler
directed him. It was not an inviting sleeping
apartment. The air in Mr. Andrews's barn
would have been far purer than in this little hot
room .filled with the odors from the kitchen.
The clean, sweet hay, too, would have made a
much softer resting-place for his aching limbs
than he was likely to find here.
Nothing is clean," he said, with disgust,
holding up the lamp and looking around him.
However, it is usually considered more re-
spectable to sleep in a house than in a barn,
especially when one has honorably earned the
right to a night's lodging there. Jack fully
appreciated this fact, and being, after all, too
much exhausted by the experiences of the day
to pay great heed to his surroundings, threw
himself on the outside of the bed, and was soon
fast asleep.
The sharp voice of Mrs. Butler aroused him
at an early hour the next morning, and he hur-
ried down stairs. Before he was fairly in the
kitchen, Mrs. Butler spied him and thrust a huge
piece of salt pork and a knife into his hands,
telling him to cut off a dozen slices and fry them
in the spider.
"Please, can't I wash my face and hands
somewhere?" inquired Jack, meekly. "And I
am very sorry, but I don't know what you
mean by a spider."
Mrs. Butler's only answer was to take the
pork and knife from his hands, and point toward
the shed. Jack knew that he should find there
the old basin and soiled towel which had been
there yesterday, and it seemed to him that he
could never use either one again. But he did
not know what else to do; so he went to the
shed, and followed the example set him by the
farmer's man who was there before him. On
his return to the house, work began in earnest,
and continued all through the week. He swept,
dusted, washed dishes, churned, made beds, even
ironed some clothes, and helped make bread,-
in fact, did everything but sew. When there
was nothing else on hand, he was called upon
to take care of the baby. He walked up and
down the road, carrying the child in his arms,
because Mrs. Butler said he was teething and


needed not only fresh air but the exercise which
the walk would give him. Little Josiah enter-
tained himself by testing the strength of his
hands on Jack's straw hat, and when Jack
remonstrated, pulled Jack's hair, and poked his.
dirty, sticky fingers into Jack's eyes instead. If
Jack still ventured to interfere with his amuse-
ment, he screamed at the top of his lungs, pum-
meling Jack with his fists, and kicking and
writhing so it was almost impossible to hold
him.
"Oh, dear!" moaned Jack, "I don't wonder
that women in India throw their babies into the
Ganges, if they act like this!"
Fortunately for Jack, Josiah's screams usually
brought Mrs. Butler upon the scene. She always
surveyed Jack with an air of grave suspicion on
these occasions, taking the baby and examining
him very carefully. Jack was sure that she
expected to discover that he had been sticking
pins into the baby or pinching him.
All of these things were disagreeable enough;
but as the week drew to its close, and Sunday
came, one question fairly haunted Jack. Would
Mrs. Butler make him do the washing on
Monday? Sunday evening she went about
picking up the soiled clothes and throwing them
into a large tub of warm suds, and she said not
a word about the washing. But at five o'clock
the next morning, Mrs. Butler called:
"Come, Jack, it 's Monday morning, you
know, and you must get a good start with
your washing."
Jack went downstairs very slowly, rolling up
his shirt-sleeves as he went. "I declare," he
exclaimed aloud, as he stood looking at the tub,
"if that water were n't so dirty, I 'd just jump
in and drown myself."
Mrs. Butler soon appeared and initiated him
into all the horrible mysteries of the wash-board
and pounding-barrel. By nine o'clock, Jack had
set his first boilerful of clothes on the stove.
There he stood, stirring up the clothes with an
old broomstick, when he was startled by a
familiar voice saying:
Our harness has given way. Can some one
give my husband a little help ?" and looking
up, he saw his old friend Mrs. Mayhew stand-
ing in the doorway. She recognized Jack
immediately, and came toward him, saying,


[MAR.






JACK'S CURE.


" Good-morning, Jack. I 'm glad to see you."
Doubtless, Mrs, Mayhew was both surprised and
amused, but her face did not betray it. Turn-
ing again to Mrs. Butler she asked if she could
spare Jack for a few moments. That lady con-
sented rather ungraciously, and Jack wiped his
dripping hands, and followed Mrs. Mayhew out
to the road, where Mr. Mayhew stood with
his horses and democrat wagon. He stared a
minute at Jack, and then broke out into a series
of disjointed and incoherent exclamations:
"Why, Jack Roberts! I declare, I did n't
know you! Where on earth-! You don't
mean that-! What are you fixed up in such
extraordinary style for? Don't let my team of
colts get a glimpse of you, for they '11 run if
they do!"
Jack needed no such remarks to remind him
of the deficiencies of his toilet. He hastily
pulled down his shirt-sleeves, and they fell over
his hands to his very finger-tips. Mr. Mayhew
laughed outright. He had not so much tact as
had his little wife. In his embarrassment Jack
dropped his eyes, and they rested on Mrs. But-
ler's checked apron and on his bare feet and
legs. Poor Jack! The truth was that his shirt
and stockings were in the wash. Mrs. Butler
had given him her husband's old red flannel
shirt to put on, and as Mr. Butler was a large,
long-limbed man, it could hardly be called a
good fit for him. As a means of protecting his
only pair of trousers, he had consented to Mrs.
Butler's proposal that he should put on one of
her aprons, and, in his haste and confusion, he
had forgotten to remove it. His shame was so
great that he could not speak. Mrs. Mayhew
answered for him.
"Jack is working on this farm, and he is
dressed for his work just as one should be when
one has dirty work to do."
I did n't mean to hurt your feelings," said
Mr. Mayhew kindly. "I supposed you were up
to some fun or other. Never mind your looks,
just see if you can't find me a piece of rope."
Jack was sure that there was some in the
barn, and started off, glad of any chance of es-
cape. Mrs. Mayhew followed him.
"Jack," she said anxiously, "tell me what
all this means. Something must be wrong.
Have you had any trouble at home?"


Jack hesitated.
Do tell me all about it," pleaded Mrs. May-
hew. I am sure that you need a friend,
Jack."
Jack knew well enough that he did, and in a
few moments he had told Mrs. Mayhew all
about it.
When he had finished his story, the kind-
hearted woman came close to him and laid her
hand on his shoulder, looking into his face with
eyes filled with tears.
"Jack," she began, I had a boy once; he
is not living now. When he was about your
age, God took him. For the sake of that boy
I must talk to you a little; and for the sake of
the mother whom you never knew, and the dear
aunt who is breaking her heart over you, you
must listen to me."
Now I'm going to catch it," thought Jack;
"but I won't cry, any way."
I remember well when your uncle brought
you to his house. You were a mere baby, only
two years old, and you were of course a great
care" (Jack thought of Josiah); "but none of the
family ever considered that. When the weather
was very hot, Uncle Hiram often sat up half the
night to fan you; and when you were ill, he
and Aunt Rachel watched over you night and
day, unwilling to trust you to any other care.
No child was ever more tenderly cherished and
cared for than you were. Oh, you don't know!
You don't understand! Why, Jack, the devo-
tion of that family to you has been something
wonderful! Everybody and everything has re-
volved around you, and every thought has been
for you. You will never know the sacrifices
they have made so that you might have the
best of everything. Aunt Rachel and the girls
have done all the work at home, and have been
glad to wear old wraps and old bonnets so that
you might be sent to a private school. You
have heard your Cousin Maggie talk about
teaching next year, but perhaps you don't know
that it is because she wishes to earn money for
you. And perhaps you never knew why Uncle
Hiram decided not to take his trip West last
winter. How is that, Jack ?"
Jack did n't know.
"Then I am going to tell you how it was. I
know, because Aunt Rachel told me. You re-


X8go.]






JACK'S CURE.


member the delightful drawing-lessons with
Professor Herman last winter? "
Yes, Jack remembered them well; for he had
never enjoyed anything half as much as those
hours with Professor Herman.
Well, Jack, your uncle could not afford
the trip West and the lessons too, so the dear
old man gave up his plans without a mur-
mur, and took as much delight in those lessons
as you did. How proud he is of every picture
you drew! He thinks you will make a great
artist some day. Now, dear boy, we are all
very human, and I dare say that Uncle Hiram
may have made some mistakes with you, but
have you made none yourself? Has he ever
asked anything unreasonable of you ? "
Jack was forced to admit that Uncle Hiram
never had.
"And have you always been obedient and
helpful to him ? or have you deserved some
rebuke sometimes? "
Jack's conscience was at work, and the
knowledge of his uncle's sacrifice for him had
touched his heart. The tears kept coming to
his eyes in spite of all his resolutions, and, as his
only handkerchief was in the wash-tub, too, he
had to wipe his eyes on the sleeve of the old
flannel shirt.
Mrs. Mayhew," he said at last, I have not
treated Uncle Hiram right, and I am sorry and
ashamed."
Mrs. Mayhew's face was radiant.
"I knew you were made of the right mate-
rial," she said. "And now, Jack, you must go
home. Nobody knows that you have run away.
Your uncle's family have only said that you
were away for a few days, and that they ex-
pected you home soon. How they must have
looked and watched for you! Oh, Jack! How
could you run away from such love, and how
could you stay away so long? But you will go
back to them to-morrow with us. We drove
over to Mr. Andrews's, Saturday, to spend a day
or two. Do you know where he lives ?"
Jack rather thought he did.
"Well, you must manage to meet us there
to-morrow morning by nine o'clock."
I am not fit to ride with you," said Jack;
"my clothes are all used up."
Never mind your clothes," replied Mrs.


Mayhew. "Find that rope for my husband, and
hurry back to him."
If Mr. Mayhew had at first exhibited a lack
of tact on this occasion, he was certainly mak-
ing all possible compensation for his shortcom-
ings by the extraordinary patience with which
he stood in the dusty road holding his restless
horses. He guessed pretty well what was pass-
ing between his wife and Jack, and would will-
ingly have waited much longer, if it had been
necessary. The rope was found and brought to
him at last, and as soon as the harness was se-
curely tied he drove away with his wife.
Mrs. Mayhew," called Jack, if you please,
I would rather meet you a little beyond Mr.
Andrews's house."
Very well," she said.
Then he returned to the kitchen and to the
wash-tub, rubbing and pounding and wringing
with such energy that Mrs. Butler was surprised
when his work was done. He did not know
that it is expected that girls will give warning "
when contemplating a change of residence, and
so he said nothing of his plans to Mrs. Butler
until he was going to bed. She was very much
offended, and talked very volubly on the folly
of trying to benefit ungrateful young people.
Jack slept little that night, and arose very
early in the morning. He smoothed out his
shirt as well as he could with his hands, but he
was not proud of his appearance after he was
dressed. Josiah had made such a wreck of his
hat that little was left of it but the crown.
As he was going through the kitchen Mr.
Butler called to him and spoke very kindly,
telling him to eat something before starting.
I knew you had run away," he said, "and I
am glad you are going home. I ran away once
myself, and by the time I got home I had n't
any father there."
Jack felt very sober as he stood in the door-
way eating some bread and butter; but he was
very thankful that he was going home to no
such sorrow. When he had finished his simple
meal he shook hands with Mr. Butler and
started to meet Mr. and Mrs. Mayhew.
The ten miles of road were the same over
which he had passed only a week ago, but how
different were his thoughts! He was so com-
pletely absorbed with them, that he was sur-


392


[MAR.





189o.] JACK S

prised when he caught sight of Mr. Andrews's
house.
As he was hastening by the familiar place,
congratulating himself that there was no one
in sight, the stillness was suddenly broken by


LOOKING UP, JACK SAW HIS OLD FRIEND MRS. MAYHEW.


LOOKING UP, JACK SAW HIS OLD FRIEND ARS. MAYHEW."


a fresh young voice, which sang with great
energy and emphasis the refrain:
Home, home, sweet, sweet home!
Be it ever so humble,
There's no place like home,
There's no-o place like home! "
Looking up, Jack saw Dorothy's mischievous
face at the window of her little room. She
laughed and disappeared from view at once;
but she continued to sing Home, sweet home,"
persistently, as long as Jack could be seen.
He soon forgot this annoyance in real dis-
may at seeing his friends waiting for him, a little
farther on, under the shade of a great elm.
VOL. XVII.-47.


Jack obeyed; and off they went, homeward
bound. But the boy was not the lively, talk-
ative Jack that Mr. and Mrs. Mayhew had
known; for his thoughts were not all happy
ones yet. He was going home, but not with
flying colors. He felt that he was no hero, and
that he had covered himself with anything but
glory. As they drew near the town he looked
down at his torn, soiled clothes, and wished
that he could creep under the seat.
Cheer up, Jack," said Mrs. Mayhew, seeing
his trouble; "no one will notice your clothes."
He began to prepare little speeches which
should express in dignified terms his sense of


'


CURE. 393
I am sorry to be late," he exclaimed, quite
out of breath, as he came running up to them.
"No matter," answered Mr. Mayhew cheerily;
"jump in, and then I '11 show you how my colts
can trot."





JACK'S CURE.


unworthiness, and desire for his uncle's forgive-
ness, but found some difficulty in putting his
thoughts into words.
When the horses stopped in front of the dear
old house his heart beat very fast, and he said
"good-bye" to his kind friends with a very
husky, uncertain voice. He hurried up the







.. 1





i0 L'




7- i
,i ;"i _r oI

_2'
"= ~:----. s o~_fl


JACK AMUSES LITTLE JOSIAH. (SEE PAGE 390.)
walk, stepped upon the little porch very softly,
and stood for a moment looking through the
window into the dining-room. The table was
set for dinner, and Jack noted that there was
a place there for him. Uncle Hiram lay on
the sofa, with a newspaper over his head. He
was asleep, for Jack could hear him snore. Just
then, a door opposite the window was opened
and Aunt Rachel came into the room. She
gave a cry of joy; and in another moment
Jack was in her arms, crying as if his heart
would break. All this commotion awoke Uncle
Hiram, and brought Alice and Maggie from the
kitchen. Jack forgot all about the fine oration
he had intended to deliver on this occasion.


He could only hold Uncle Hiram's hand, and
sob out in broken words his sorrow over the
past, and his purpose to be a better boy in the
future.
Dear boy," said Uncle Hiram tenderly, we
have all made some mistakes, and, with God's
help, we are all going to do better."
At that moment the door burst
open, and in rushed Nellie and
Kate. Some one had told them
that Jack had come, and they had
run all the way home from school.
SThen everybody talked and laughed
and cried at once for a whole hour.
SMaggie's pet chickens walked into
S' the kitchen, making themselves
very much at home there, and in-
S dulging freely in clucks of delight;
Sbut the excited family neither saw
nor heard them. The potatoes
S and corn-bread burned up in the
oven, and the gravy boiled out
of the spider in which the sliced
mutton was warming. The dough-
S nuts which Maggie had left in the
kettle whirled around faster and
faster in the bubbling fat, but no
"- -- one thought of them, and they
were soon as black as the stove.
At last, the burning lard began
to assert itself, and Maggie sud-
denly became conscious that the
house was filling with smoke. Oh,
dear! My doughnuts are burning,
and I forgot all about the dinner,"
she cried, running out through the china-closet
into the kitchen. There was trouble enough The
chickens flew out of the kitchen with great cack-
ling and flapping of wings, but too late; for
Maggie saw, with dismay, that they had eaten off
the top-crust from two fresh apple-pies which she
had set to cool on the bench under the window.
She caught the kettle and spider from the stove
and ran with them into the.wood-shed. Then
she opened the oven door. It was too bad! Just
when Jack had come and she would have been
glad to have an especially good dinner. Well,
Jack," said Uncle Hiram dryly, as he stood
with his hands in his pockets, looking at the
blackened remains of the potatoes and johnny-


[MAR.






JACK'S CURE.


cake, you will never have the chance to say
that we killed the fatted calf for you. I really
don't know as we are going to give you any
dinner at all."
They all laughed at this, and every one was
so happy that nothing mattered much. They
ate a simple lunch with great contentment, and
Aunt Rachel said they should celebrate with
a fine supper that night.
Now, you must not think that the millennium


had come in that house, although there was
more of heaven there than formerly. Jack was
still very fond of his own way and of his own
ease; but he fought perseveringly to overcome
his selfish and indolent habits. Uncle Hiram
still had rheumatism sometimes, and was not
always perfectly reasonable, but he had learned
some lessons as well as Jack.
And did Jack ever see Dorothy again ?
Yes.


GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


By MARGARET J. PRESTON.


NELLIE CUSTIS.

ON the library mantelpiece, in the home of
General Lee (in Lexington, Virginia), stand two
tall and massive silver candlesticks, which have
an historic association. They were the gift of
Queen Anne to the young lieutenant, Daniel
Parke, aide-de-camp to the Duke of Marlbor-
ough, and were presented to him on the occasion
of his bringing to her the news of the victory
of Blenheim. It was a great honor to be the
bearer of that news, and five hundred pounds
was usually the gift of the sovereign to such
a messenger. Colonel Parke chose, instead, the
Queen's miniature, which she gave him set in
diamonds. Four pair of these unique candle-
sticks were also presented to him, and a full ser-
vice of superb silver, so heavy that, as I tried to
lift one of the salvers, it strained my hands.
This Daniel Parke was the ancestor of Nellie
Custis, in whose baptismal name we find this
one of the Duke of Marlborough's aide. A
very fine full-length portrait of Colonel Parke,
painted by Sir Godfrey Kneller, hangs in Gen-
eral Lee's drawing-room at Lexington. It
was one of the historic canvases that so long
adorned-first, the walls at Mount Vernon, and
afterward, those of Arlington. Colonel Parke
was a very handsome man, and his physical
type has singularly stamped itself upon many of
his descendants.


In a package of old papers we find the fol-
lowing letter from Colonel Parke to the young
daughter who afterward married Colonel Cus-
tis,- the great-grandfather of George and Nellie
Custis,- which it may be worth while to intro-
duce here, as originally written:

ST. JAMES October ye 2oth
1697
MY DEAR FANNY-
I Rec'd yr first letter, and be sure you be as good
as yr word and mind yr writing and everything else you
have learnt; and doe not learn to Romp, but behave
yrselfe soberly and like A Gentlewoman. Mind Read-
ing; and carry yrself so yt Everyboddy may Respect
you. Be Calm and Obligeing to all the servants, and
when you speak, doe it mildly Even to the poorest slave;
if any of the Servants commit small faults yt are of no
consequence, do you hide them. If you understand of
any great faults they commit, acquaint yr mother, but
doe not aggravate the fault. I am well, and have sent
you everything you desired, and, please God I doe well,
I shall see you ere long. Love yr sister and yr friends;
be dutiful to yr mother. This, with my blessing is from
yr lo: father, DAN'EL. PARKE.

When George Washington, in 1759, married
the beautiful widow, Mrs. Custis, who as Martha
Dandridge had been the belle of Williamsburg,
in the bright days when Governor Gooch main-
tained there almost a regal court, she had two
children, John and Martha, who were adopted
by Washington, and carried at once to Mount
Vernon. Young Martha was a lovely girl,


395






GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


and her stepfather doted on her as much as if
she had been his own daughter. When she
died at the age of sixteen, he flung himself
upon her bed in an agony of grief, and for a
long time utterly refused to be comforted.
Her brother John-"Jacky," as Washington
calls him in his letters-grew up at Mount Ver-
non, where his education was most carefully
superintended by Washington himself. The
boy was very fond of pleasure, and of all the
gentlemanly sports of the day, and he used
sometimes to vex his stepfather by his prefer-
ring them to his studies. Indeed, occasionally
he would slip away from school and go on fox-
hunts, much to the disapprobation of Washing-
ton. When he was only about eighteen he fell
in love with Eleanor Calvert, a near relative of
Lord Baltimore. She was little more than fif-
teen, and Washington very strenuously opposed
the marriage. It
was settled, how-
ever, that if he
would remain
for two years at
King's College
(now Columbia
College, New
York) consent
would be given
to his marriage.
But love was not
to be overruled.
The young col-
legian would
do nothing but
scribble over the
JOHN PARKE CUSTIS.
(FROM A MINIATURE IN POSSESSION pages of his
OF GENERAL G. W. C. LEE.) books the name
of Nellie Calvert." Between his mental eye,
and the page over which he pretended to pore,
ever intervened the lithe figure of Lord Balti-
more's lovely ward, whose fresh beauty witched
him away from everything like severe study. For
a few months he bore the separation as well as
he could; but finally confessed the truth, and
was allowed to return to Mount Vernon, where
he and Miss Calvert were married, in r774.
After his marriage, although he was a minor,
young Custis settled down into a valuable and
earnest man. During the Revolutionary war


he was aide-de-camp to Washington, and ren-
dered, on many occasions, very important ser-
vice. While the American army lay before
Yorktown he was seized with camp-fever, and
died, to the intense grief of his foster-father,
after a brief illness. So overwhelming, for a
time, was the grief of the victor for the death
of this stepson, that the general rejoicings that
thrilled the land found no echo in his bosom.
Immediately on the death of their father,
Washington adopted, in full legal form, the two
younger children of his stepson,- Eleanor
Parke Custis, and George Washington Parke
Custis. "Nellie," as she was always called, was
only two years and a half old when she became
the child of Mount Vernon, and little George
was a baby of six months. The wife of the
steward at Mount Vernon was baby George's
nurse, and for many a year, according to the
custom of Southern children, he called her
"Mammy." Nellie used to tell how she re-
membered running with Mammy," when she
was only three years old, to meet the General
and Lady Washington, on their return from
camp in a chariot drawn by six horses.
The little Nellie's life at Mount Vernon was
a very happy one. She was kept strictly to her
lessons, and Washington was very strenuous in
having her give prompt attention to all her
duties. But at the same time she was indulged
with a great variety of pleasures. She had many
young companions of her own age, who visited
her at Mount Vernon, and she would often re-
late how considerate the General was in trying
to make everything easy and pleasant for her
visitors. He delighted in seeing young people
happy, and would often remain in the drawing-
room with the girls, in order that he might en-
joy the sight of their pleasure. But finding
that it was not easy for them to conquer their
awe of the great man, before whom they could
not indulge in gay chatter, he would withdraw,
and leave them to their own devices.
There was no neglect of any kind of train-
ing, for in those old days children were not al-
lowed the liberties and indulgences that our pro-
gressive times accord. The lessons given to
the little Nellie were so long that the tender
grandmamma would sometimes beg to have
them shortened. The child was kept rigidly to


396


[MAR.





GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


the rules of the school-room. Indeed, the edu-
cation of the children was much in advance of
that of most children of their day. Nellie
early learned to write a beautiful hand, and I
have now lying before me many of her letters,
written with an elegance and freedom very un-
usual at that period. Our great-grandparents
were a little shaky as to their spelling in those
old times, but these letters, now dingy and worn
with age, scarcely contain a word differing from
the orthography of the present day.
Mount Vernon was the resort of all the dis-
tinguished men in the country; and no eminent
foreigner came from abroad who did not go
thither to pay his respects to the man who
was even then placed high among the world's
heroes. So from her earliest years the child was
brought face to face with the most distinguished
people in the land. The style of living at Mount
Vernon was that of the landed aristocracy of
England. General Washington and his wife each
had a large fortune, and the hospitality of the
mansion was unbounded. The family never sat
down to dinner without some brilliant visitors, to
whom, according to the English custom, the
children were presented when they were brought
in with the dessert. Of course all this gave an
ease and an elegance to their manners which
distinguished them both throughout life.
In one of his letters, Washington says: "I
keep a hundred cows upon my estate, and yet
still I am obliged to buy my butter." This will
give some idea of the amount of company that
was entertained at the hospitable home. Many a
time when the whole country turned out for a
fox-hunt, of which sport Washington was exceed-
ingly fond, the entire company would dine and
stay all night at Mount Vernon, which made it
gay and delightful for Nellie.
She loved, in after years, to dwell upon the
absolute harmony that always existed between
her grandparents. She used to tell how she had
often seen her grandmamma, when she had some-
thing to ask the General, break in upon him
when his mind was entirely abstracted, and oc-
cupied by grave business; how she would run up
to him, seize him by one of his buttons, and shake
him to compel his attention; how he always
would smile upon her in the most benignant man-
ner, listen to whatever she had to say, and never


seem vexed by the intrusion. Nellie many a
time tried to correct the impression that at home
the General always wore his grave dignity; she
would tell how she was accustomed to amuse
him often by relating some gay prank of her own,
over which he would laugh in the heartiest man-
ner, like any common mortal.
Nellie was very gay-tempered, and possessed
remarkable beauty, as her portrait, by Gilbert
Stuart, which now hangs in General Lee's draw-
ing-room, testifies. She had an exceeding vivac-
ity of manner, was very witty, and possessed an
amiability of character, and a bright cheerfulness
which never deserted her to her latest day. This
made her the darling of the Mount Vernon
household, and her charming personality com-
mended her to all its visitors.
As may be supposed, Nellie had a great many
suitors, and among them some of the most bril-
liant men of the day. It was very natural that
Washington should desire to bind the dear child,
on whom he doted, by still closer ties. Accord-
ingly, we find that when young Lawrence Lewis,
his favorite nephew, the son of his beloved sister
Elizabeth, came to reside at Mount Vernon as
his private secretary, Washington favored the
young man's suit for the hand of his foster-
daughter. Nellie was beautiful, gay, had the
world before her where to choose, and was, per-
haps, like all belles, a little capricious. Grand-
mamma had some other plans for her; but no
restraint was brought to bear upon the young
girl. There is a long letter, preserved by her
brother George, written to her by General Wash-
ington when she was only sixteen years of age,
on the event of her first ball. It was full of wise
and gentle advice to her on the matter of love
and marriage, and he gives her a number of
hints about avoiding coquetry, to which, perhaps,
Nellie was a little inclined. He begs her not to
let her impulses run away with her; but to be
as reasonable in the matter of love as she was
in everything else. He was evidently afraid that
some of the gay wits of the day might deprive
his dear Lawrence of the wife he intended for
him.
Be that as it may, a singular occurrence, re-
lated to me by one of Nellie's great-nieces,
precipitated the matter. Nellie," she -said,
"had a great fancy for enacting the nurse when


397






GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


[MAR.


it ,.
_. -
r:




. --- *i ''
.


NELLIE CUSTIS. (FROM A PAINTING BY GILBERT STUART, OWNED BY GENERAL G. W. C. LEE.)


there was anything the matter with the health of
her friends." She was very fond of giving pow-
ders," prescribing "lotions," and doing all she
could, in the exceeding kindness of her heart, to
restore them; for it will be remembered that, in
those more primitive days, women were better
domestic doctors than they are now, when every
ache and pain has its professional specialist.
It so happened, one day, that the handsome
young Lawrence, to whose persistent addresses
she had never given as yet a very earnest atten-
tion, fell ill. He was living at Mount Vernon,


an inmate, with Nellie, of the family. What
was more natural than that she should bring
her medical skill to bear upon him ? She
accordingly prepared a powder, which was duly
administered. What was her horror, and that
of the family, to find, after it had been taken,
that a mistake had been made, and that the
drug given was a poison! Of course Nellie's
agony was intense, and she probably discovered
then, for the first time, how necessary this life
had become to hers. In her remorse and grief,
she vowed that if Lawrence recovered she would


398





GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


marry him. Lawrence did recover, and in due
time she became his wife.
The marriage was a very brilliant one. All
the great people of the neighborhood, distin-
guished officers of the army, celebrities from
abroad, and the Government officers of the new
capital were present to grace the festivities,
which took place on the 22d of February, Wash-
ington's birthday, at Mount Vernon. There was
not a negro on the plantation that day who did
not share in the joy of Little Missy's wedding."
The young married pair lived, for a while,
with the President; but finally took up their
abode on an estate, belonging to the Lewis
family, called Woodlawn," which lay between
Mount Vernon and Arlington. This was the
home where most of Nellie Custis's long and
happy life was passed. She devoted herself with
noble assiduity, and with all a Virginia matron's


G. W. P. CUSTIS IN BOYHOOD.
(FROM A PAINTING OWNED BY GENERAL G. W. C. LEE.)
unselfishness, just as she had seen her grand-
mother do before her, to the burdensome duties


399


servants, to whom she was the best of mistresses;
to the exercise of a vast hospitality, as well as to
the education of her several children.
When she was still a comparatively young
woman, she lost a lovely daughter, Agnes,
whose death was a sore blow to her. There
was put into my hands, very recently, a box
containing many precious memorials of the
lives of these two Custis children, from which
these notes are mainly drawn. The letters are
faded with age, and many of them worn almost
to indistinctness. Among these papers, I find
a copy of verses, written by Nellie Custis on
the death of this beloved daughter. She wrote
many verses in her young days, but, as she had
no literary ambition, and wrote merely for her
own pleasure and that of her friends, her poems
have not been carefully preserved. This is the
. only one which I have been able to secure. It
is before me in the original graceful handwriting
of the bereaved mother:

TO THE MEMORY OF MY AGNES.

WHY then do you grieve for me, mother ? "- she cried,
As I painted the joys of the blest;
Why then do you grieve, dearest child? "--I replied,
Thou wilt go to a haven of rest."

For thee, my lost Angel, ev'n death had no sting,
And no terrors, the cold, silent grave;
Tho' Thy Maker recalled Thee, in life's early Spring,
He resumed but the blessing He gave.

Thy end was so peaceful,-so pure was thy life,
Could a wish now restore thee again,
'T were a sin to expose thee to perils and strife,-
To a world of temptation and pain.

I can not forget, tho' I do not repine,
That those eyes are now shrouded in death;
Which bent with the fondest affection on mine,
Till my darling resigned her last breath.

To adore Thy Creator in spirit and truth,
Submissive to bow to His will,
To the close of thy life from thy earliest youth,
Thou didst then these duties fulfill !

To thy favorite beech do I often repair,
And I kiss on its bark, thy dear name;
To meet thee in Heaven is ever my prayer,
And my last sigh shall murmur the same.

Here is an extract from a letter she wrote at


of a plantation peopled with a large number of this time to her brother George:


18go.]






GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


.I am resigned to the will of the Almighty,
and hope that my child is eternally blessed. She was as
much of an angel as any human being could be before
death. If I could forget her sufferings I would feel more
easy; but I always think I might have done more than
I did. I wish to see my dearest Mary. My child often
spoke of, and wished to see her. May she live to bless
you, my dearest Mary, and when she does go hence, may
her death be as tranquil as my darling's was at the
last.

Nellie Custis was possessed of many accom-
plishments. She embroidered very beautifully,
and was exceedingly fond of the art. I have
now before me a bit of her needlework, done for
Robert E. Lee, when he was a young man,
recently married to her niece, Mary Custis, of
Arlington. One of her great-nieces tells me
that "Aunt Lewis's" witticisms, and clever say-
ings, and brilliant talk, and beautiful cheerful-
ness, and unbounded generosity have always
been traditions in the family. She remembers
being taken frequently, when a little child of four
or five, with her sisters, to her home at Wood-
lawn"-visits which were considered the great-
est treat of their lives. "Aunt Lewis was so
loving," she said, "so gentle and bright, she
made everything beautiful for us. She always
had a store of little presents ready; and one of
my earliest memories is being taken into one
of her treasure-closets and treated to sweeties."
Some time before her death, she removed to
" Audley," another family seat, which is now the
home of one of her great-nephews. Here she
died in i851, aged seventy-four. Among the
MSS., to which I have already referred, is a
letter written by Mrs. G. W. P. Custis, of Arling-
ton, to her daughter, Mrs. Robert E. Lee. I
quote a sentence or two :

What an affectionate, inexpressibly kind sister and
aunt we have lost, my daughter I do not think in all
our long intercourse she ever uttered a word to me that
was not in the most perfect kindness; and a thousand
kind acts evince still more.

Before me lie two pictures taken from minia-
tures of Nellie Custis, sent to me by one of her
grandsons. One represents her as a young girl,
just entering her teens, full of the sweet shy-
ness and tender beauty characteristic of her in
those early years, when the sparkle was in her
eye, and the rose upon her cheek. The other


pictures her as she appeared in the matronly
dignity of old age, when the winter snows of
life had hidden the violets, and withered the
rose-leaves of youth; but, even in this last pre-
sentment, one still discerns traces of that vivac-
ity and gentleness and suavity that made her
in her young years the pride and darling of
Mount Vernon.

GEORGE CUSTIS.

THE "little George," of whom "Tutor Snow"
speaks so affectionately in some of his brief
reminiscences of the Mount Vernon life which
have come down to us, was only six months
old when adopted by Washington. His whole
life, consequently, was passed at Mount Vernon
(except the years he was at college), until, in
his early manhood, he married, and established
a home for himself at Arlington. Tutor Snow "
was interested in everything that affected the
little grandson. We find him writing to a
friend, and describing his young pupil's "fine
black cloth coat, and his overalls";
and again he ( writes to know
where a Latin grammar can be

P.



















G. W. P. CUSTIS AS A BOY AT MOUNT VERNON.
(FROM A MINIATURE IN POSSESSION OF GENERAL G. W. C. LEE.)

procured; for it is time, he thinks, "to set the
boy down to his Gradus." It seems very odd
to us in these days, when old Latin grammars
go back to the paper-mills by the dray-load,


[MAR.


400





GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


in order to be reduced to pulp again, to find
the tutor of the grandson of the President of
the United States making inquiries here and
there, among his learned friends, for one by
means of which to set his little pupil to work.
Now the son of any poor laborer throughout
the land can command any text-book he may
want, for nothing, or for the merest nominal
price.
Some time ago, a friend of mine, who had
picked up a little half-starved, half-dressed negro
boy, and had fed him for six months, until he
became sleek and shiny, conceived the idea
of making a little butler of him. She decked
him out as a waiter, and he answered her pur-
poses admirably, until one day he announced
that he wished to go to school. She consented,
on condition that he should always be in his
place at her six o'clock dinner. After a brief
time, however, the boy grew careless, and one
day, at the time when plates were to be handed,
he was not on call.
"How is this, John ?" she asked; "I surely
give you plenty of time for your lessons."
"No 'm," was the reply, "I has n't time;
for you see I has botany, and geography, and
mathematics, and I has to make up so much
on my Latin grammar."
"You learning Latin!" exclaimed his mis-
tress. Why, that 's more than ever I did! "
La! answered John superciliously. "You
was nothing' but a girl, and girls can't learn
Latin nohow!"
The barefooted negro of to-day was better
off for books than was this little heir of Mount
Vernon, a hundred years ago!
"Master Washington," as he was always
called, had, however, no great fondness for
books in his early years, for there was every-
thing around him to distract his attention, and
fill his outdoor life with delight. The Mount
Vernon house was always filled with company,
in the midst of which Master Washington had
his part to play. The retinue of servants was
immense, and the little boy had his train of
black followers and playmates. The estate con-
sisted of fifteen thousand acres; it had splendid
fisheries on the Potomac, was thoroughly stocked
with deer, abounded in partridges, pheasants,
and hare; and every fortnight there was a regu-
VOL. XVII.- 48.


lar hunt, in which, as soon as he was old enough,
the boy took part.
Mr. Custis gives an account, in his recollec-
tions of Washington at Mount Vernon, of a
certain morning, when he was summoned by
Washington to go out with the drivers and kill
an old back. He says: I was charmed with
the permission (as any boy would be), so long
coveted, and I determined to follow as closely
as possible my grandfather's orders: Recollect,
sir, you are to fire with ball-to use no hounds
and on no account to kill any but an old
buck.' We went to the haunt of one known as
the patriarch of the herd, rousing him from his
lair, while the woods echoed with the shouts of
the huntsmen and the cries of the dogs; the
old buck, crashing through the undergrowth,
made for the waters of the Potomac-the
huntsmen lustily laying about them to prevent
the dogs from breaking up the wounded stag,
who, after a gallant struggle, yielded up his life
and was carried in triumph to the mansion
house, there to await the master's inspection.
Punctual as the hand of the clock the Gen-
eral arrived from his morning ride. I announced
that a fine buck had been shot. Ah, well,' he
replied,' let's see.' He examined the deer, and,
observing his frosted front, he became con-
vinced that his orders had been obeyed to the
letter. The next day, guests having assembled,
the haunch was served up in the dining-room at
Mount Vernon. I have killed many a brave
deer since those days, but none that have left an
impression on my memory like that of the
Washington stag, killed by Washington's special
order, and served at his board at Mount Ver-
non. The antlers of this stag graced the great
hall at Arlington for many a long year."
But it must not be supposed that Master
Washington Custis was allowed to spend many
days thus. When a mere boy he was sent to
Princeton College, where, from all accounts, he
acquitted himself in a gentlemanly manner,
though at no time distinguished for great devo-
tion to study. He preserved the correspondence
which passed between him and his grandfather;
and it is very interesting, on Washington's part
being full of good fatherly advice, and on the
part of young Custis, deferential, affectionate,
and proper. The formal character of it some-






GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


what amuses us now; but there is no boy in the
land who might not be improved by reading the
advice Washington gives to the young collegian.
He strictly guards him against unnecessary ex-
pense, constantly bids him take good care of
his health, and urges him to let nothing make
him neglect his studies. Here is a sentence,
which, for the benefit of some sophomore, I
quote from one of the letters:
Another thing I would recommend to you,-not be-
cause Iwant to know how you spend your money,-and
that is, to keep an account book, and enter therein every
farthing of your receipts and expenditures. The doing
of this will initiate you into a habit from which consider-
able advantages will result. From an early attention to
a matter like this important and lasting benefits may
follow.
Young Washington in one of his letters says:
The Fourth of July will be celebrated here with all
possible magnificence; the college will be illuminated,
and cannon fired; a ball will be held in the evening at the
Tavern, which I shall not attend, as I do not consider it
consistent with propriety.

Our young student was rather more of a stick-
ler for "propriety," than the sophomores and
juniors of the present day Washington, in re-
plying to him, says:
If it has been usual for the students of Nassau Hall
to go to the balls on the anniversary of the Declaration of
Independence, I see no reason why you should have
avoided it, as no innocent amusement or reasonable ex-
penditure will ever be withheld from you.

Young Custis afterward went to Annapolis to
perfect himself in science and mathematics, and
from the satisfaction expressed in Washington's
letter, he seems to have made good use of his
time while there.
After his return to Mount Vernon, he became
a favorite visitor among all the families in the
neighborhood. He was handsome in person,
elegant in manner, well-read, and cultivated, the
heir to a large fortune (especially the Arlington
estate, opposite Washington, which came to him
through his father, John Custis), and the pride
and pet of the Mount Vernon home. It was not
strange, therefore, he should make havoc among
the hearts of the young belles around him. We
accordingly soon find him, though not much
more than a boy still, making love to a certain
beautiful and accomplished girl residing on one


of the neighboring estates- Mary Lee Fitzhugh,
of Ravensworth. Lying before me is the origi-
nal of a letter addressed to this young lady. The
paper is yellow with age, for it must have been
written about the close of the century, and the
ink so.faded that it is scarcely legible. It looks
as if it had been worn next the heart of the pretty
maiden, so dim and dilapidated is it. We append
some passages from the original love-letter, to
show what sort of things these missives were al-
most a hundred years ago.


MY DEAR LOVE:


Saturday.


I congratulate you, my Love, on the
return of your much respected Parent to the embraces of
his Darling Child, and hope his presence will dispel the
gloom which the late melancholy event has occasioned.
How pleasant must be your fireside at this moment.
How I long to be a partaker of its pleasures,- of the de-
lights of rational converse, and social Harmony,- of be-
ing considered a Member of a family whose regard I shall
always be proud to attain, and whose esteem I should
always be happy to preserve. Say, my Mary, how would
such an addition to the Circle appear ? .
I have rode twenty miles to-day, and walked ten! You
said you believed I was industrious. Yes, Girl, as stir-
ring a fellow as you will find! One who takes about one
hour's rest in the twelve, and who feels as much of the
open air, winter and summer, as anybody. We won't
starve, Molly, if I can help it, believe me! ...
The fishing season is fast approaching; an awful time;
I shall be able to tell you whether it was fair or foul at
any time of the night you may wish to know. While
your pretty peepers are fast closed, I shall be pacing the
shore, with a lantern in one hand, and a piece of bread in
the other, gazing upon the element which is to afford my
profit. It is a turbulent life, and yet has its pleasures.
We all sing, and are gay, tho' wet and sleepy. It agrees
vastly with me. The only time I ever weighed 140 was
immediately after a spell of this sort, when I had slept
but three hours a night for some time, and occasionally
not at all for several. Don't fear my Health; my car-
cass is proof against all weathers, and if my heart is light,
and mind contented, I fear nothing. I am making
great preparations, it is my last recourse; my other
crops have all failed from the badness of the last season;
this is the last card I have to play, and I '11 take care to
use it to the best advantage. Sitting, last night, and re-
flecting a little, I have arranged a plan for proceeding this
summer. In a few days after the 15th of May, I shall
set off for the White House, from thence to the Eastern
Shore, a journey of 300 miles, and return about the last
of July, make my speech on the 16th, and after that,
while you are perambulating "over the Hill and far
away," I can be finishing our House, and raising Chickens
against your return. What think you of that for a plan,
Molly ? Then, when you return, I' l officiate as master
of Ceremonies!


402


[MAR.






GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


S Why did you not write to-day, Love ? Last
night I received your letter, and hasted from the extrem-
ity of my Estate to have the pleasure of answering it, al-
tho' it required none. Oh, you Molly, if you knew what
pleasure one word written by your sweet pretty hand
(for, flattery aside, it is the handsomest I ever saw, and I
have traveled and seen many), I say did you know what
delight it gave me, you would send me one poor line
more. I have written till my old pen will bear mending
no longer; and I forgot to send for quills, so that I must
stop in my own defense.
My Mary, In the world you live in, you are de-
serving of esteem. In the world to come, May Beneficent
Heaven acknowledge Your worth, and reward your
merits.
Adieu,
GEORGE W. P. CUSTIS.
Miss FITZHUGH.
Young Custis was married about 1803 to this
charming person, when he was barely twenty-
three years of age. On his beautiful estate of a
thousand acres, opposite Washington City, on
the Potomac, he built a very handsome resi-
dence, to which he carried his young wife in the
early years of their marriage; and here he set-
tled down to the life of a planter, to which he
gave himself with much assiduity. He became
a man of many elegant accomplishments, and a
valuable member of society. He had a great
talent for oratory, and was widely popular as a
public speaker. Hardly anything in the new
city could go on without his aid and presence.
After the death of Mrs. Washington, the
treasures of Mount Vernon were transferred to
Arlington, as the inheritance of her only grand-
son. This still kept up in the nation at large the
interest in the Custis family. Here were gath-
ered many pictures of Washington, and all the
valuables belonging to him. Arlington thence-
forth became the center of attraction to all who
visited the national Capital, and Mr. Custis
proved himself the most hospitable of hosts.
No foreigner of any note visited him without
carrying away some little memento that had
belonged to his grandfather. That he should
give away autographs, and such trifles, was not
surprising; but one of his granddaughters tells
me that few distinguished people went away
without carrying with them a plate, or a cup, or
something of value that had belonged to the
Washington sets of glass or china. He allowed
picnics and outdoor amusements of all kinds to
take place on his fine grounds. On his estate,


about half a mile from the house, there was a very
fine spring, surrounded by a beautiful meadow.
He had this kept shorn for the pleasure-seekers
of Washington; and he had a summer-house
and spring-house erected there, for the con-
venience of their outdoor entertainment; for
nothing delighted him more than to add to the
enjoyment of young people. Arlington thus
became a historic spot; its hospitality embraced
all comers, and there was scarcely a day in which
parties did not go over from Washington to visit
it. The gentle hostess was as generous as her
husband, and lavished her kind attentions,
through a long series of years, upon thousands
of strangers.
Mr. Custis was very fond of art, and culti-
vated it after a fashion of his own. He had
really no knowledge of its technique; but he
had much skill in drawing and grouping; and
the walls of Arlington were hung with great
canvases, portraying many of the battles of the
Revolution. He had a favorite old servant, who,
his friends used laughingly to say, handled the
brush like his master, and did the drudgery
work of filling in his backgrounds. To the
press of the day the master of Arlington was a
frequent contributor; and he was in demand
everywhere for patriotic orations, in which he
distinguished himself. He had four children;
all died in infancy, save the youngest, Mary,
who became the wife of Robert E. Lee.
As the years went on, grandchildren gathered
about his knees. His devotion to them was
extreme, and their adoration of "Grandpapa
Custis was no less so. Lying beside me is a
pretty letter, addressed to his little granddaugh-
ter Agnes when her father was superintendent
at West Point, full of sweet counsel, and com-
plimenting her on the good handwriting and
spelling of the letter which he had just received.
He was exceedingly indulgent to his grand-
children, who spent much of their earlier life at
Arlington during Colonel Lee's absence on fron-
tier duty. I was told by one of them an amus-
ing instance of the way in which he coddled and
spoiled them.
This little granddaughter, of seven or eight,
had been mainly brought up at Arlington, and
was the especial darling of her grandparents. She
was a most loving child, if perhaps a little spoiled


1890.]


403





GEORGE AND NELLIE CUSTIS.


by them, and she took it into her mischievous
head, one day, to give them what she thought
would be a little scare, not really intending any-
thing serious by it. She thought it would be so
droll to have the whole establishment turned
out to hunt for her; so she determined to make
them believe that she was lost. Toward dusk,
one summer evening, she strolled away, down
into a grove bordering on the Potomac, having
taken care to steal forth without being seen by
any one. She sauntered about in the grove till
dusk, then, watching her opportunity when no
one was about, she glided back to the house,
entered it by one of the distant wings, which
was only used as a suite of rooms for visitors,
went softly upstairs, and choosing one apart-
ment, the farthest removed, let herself in, locked
the door, and climbed up into the high-post
bed, where she soon fell fast asleep.
As dark came on, inquiries began to be made
about the little absentee; search was instituted
in all the rooms of the house,-in the gardens,
over the lawn, everywhere it was thought pos-
sible the child could have strayed. All the
household of servants were questioned. Not
one of them had seen her. The dear grand-
mamma's anxiety became extreme, and at last
amounted to a species of anguish, for she thought
of the long sloping to the river, and of the pos-
sibility that her child might have wandered
thither and fallen in. At length whispers began
to be circulated that the Potomac must be
dragged, when one of the servants suggested
that they had not yet gone over the distant wing
of the house. A band of them, carrying lights,
and headed by Mr. Custis, went to visit these
apartments. Door after door was opened, but
the rooms were empty. But all this noise and
clatter at length aroused the little culprit from
her sleep. She heard them approaching the
room in which she lay, and, sitting up in bed,
she saw a streak of light under the door. In
an instant more the door was tried, but, as it was
locked, they could not, of course, open it.
My darling, my darling cried the trem-
bling grandfather, "are you there ?"
This was the little mischief's moment of ex-
ultation, for which she had arranged the whole
dramatic proceeding! To have all Arlington
searching for her was something very stirring.


She kept as still as a mouse; again came the
petition, My darling, speak, if you are within!"
But there was not a sound. At length she
heard a groan from her grandpapa: "She is n't
there she can't be there "
One of the old servants bent his ear to the
crack of the door.
Mastah," he whispered, I think she be; I
dun hear de bed creak! "
Another pounding at the door and another
pleading petition to be let in; but the deter-
mined little darling" still held them at bay,
until she heard her grandfather say, "Jim, go
and bring an axe and hew down the door! "
Then her courage failed her; she climbed
down from the bed, and, putting her lips to the
keyhole, called out:
Grandpapa, if you promise nothing shall
be done to me for scaring you, I '11 open the
door!"
The grandpapa, only too much overjoyed to
have his lost pet safe again, solemnly promised
her that she should not be punished. She ac-
cordingly opened the door, and was carried off
in triumph to her agonized grandmother, who,
tearfully waiting to hear the result of the river-
dragging, which she supposed had taken place,
received her, as may be imagined, with noth-
ing but expressions of thanksgiving and joy, with
which not one word of reproach was mingled.
As long as he lived Mr. Custis was an object
of great interest to the Washington people in
general, but more especially to the diplomatic
circles and foreigners of note who visited the
Capital; for he was the last link that bound up
the interest of the country with Washington's
family. He stood out in clear relief as a historic
character; and was, himself, so full of anecdote
and reminiscence relating to his grandfather,
that he was continually surrounded by a circle
of charmed listeners. He might well have
wearied of the demands made upon him as a
host; but he was very genial and easy-tempered,
and always ready to exert himself for the en-
tertainment of all comers, and did not grudge
that tourists were continually breaking in upon
the privacy of the family life.
He died in October, 1857, leaving the large
and beautiful estate of Arlington to his only
child, Mrs. Mary Custis Lee.


404






"" ,/ -7


arch.
It was raining hard when I went to bed ;
The creek was over its banks, they said ,


And in the morning far and wide
The meadows were flooded onevery side;

There was water over the yard below,
And it looked like a place I did not know :

The wind swept by with a rushing sound,
And the dog-house floated around and round.


When father went out to the barn that day
I thought he'd surely be swept away .


Inlong gum boots he stepped from the door;
And the water was up to his knees and more

I thought, if the flood should never go down,
We'd build a boat and row to town,

For there we would buy our bread and meat
And pies and all things good to eat,

And living here for all our days
We would almost be like castaways.


K.P.


i:'~


*.> \i


E


0)S













SEVEN LITTLE INDIAN STARS.
(An Iroquois Legend of the Pleiades.)

By MRS. S. M. B. PIATT.

SEVEN little Indian boys were they,
Dancing with the moonbeams on a mound.
In the wind they all were whirled away,
And the fireflies searched the dews around.

Through the woods there went the mother-cry.
Every oak-leaf shook upon its stem,
Every eagle started up the sky
And their shadows went to look for them.

Seven little Indian stars are they,
Seven, and only one, my child, is dim.
That's the Singer, their sad stories say;
That 's-the Singer- let us pity him.

Oh, the little Singer! How the bee
Missed him till her heart was fit to break;
How she hid wild honey murmurously,
Summer after summer, for his sake.

How the young deer with a wistful look,
Grieving for her dark boy, without rest
Wandered till of her own will she took
The lone chieftain's arrow in her breast.

Oh, the little Singer! (You can see
He 's not shining as the others are.)
Once, when all the stars made wishes, he
Wished he did n't have to be a star!

Oh, the little Singer! When the rest
Of those little Indian stars ah, me! -
Sang together, sang to God, their best,
He would mock a bluebird in a tree.





















By ALICE MADE WELL.


_- ^OW, there be
some will have
it for true how
that same law
SZ was the best
law was ever
Passed by As-
sembly in all
Virginia, from
the very first
-A Christianwhite
establishmentt
thereof till this present. 'T was fairly needful,
I reckon. Mayhap 't was by reason of our for-
bears being holden o'er still-tongued so long
i' the old country, 'way off yonder, that the
out-speaking here did fetch to such a pass.
Speak but a word amiss ('t is said) o'er yon
in Merry England, againstt whichsoever side
is uppermost, king or rebels, pope or parson,
and off goes your head, if you be gentleman
born; up you swing, gallows high, if you be
t' other way. Aye, so my grandfather hath a
many a time told me they did in his young
days. That 's the way on 't there, forsooth;
an' such ones as know too much to-day will
know naught at all to-morrow. Well, as for
the scandal-mongering here in Virginia, 't was
clean past law an' gospel 'fore that measure was
carried. I was a youngster then, when we did
first hear of the new statute set a-working,
i' the year of grace an' knowledge, sixteen
hund'ed an' sixty-three, or nigh thereabouts;
yet good thirty year agone tho' it be, I remem-
ber well the clack-clackety-clack o' gossiping,


week in and out, there 'd be a-going on, enow to
make one mad. So 't was time for a stop-short,
as all sensible bodies said; but for the law
itself, why it did ever seem unto me (to tell
truth) a right one-sided business, in the manner
of being a mere man's judgment and o'er hard
on women. Now, this was the long an' short
on 't, for all I do forget the wording, to wit:
That in a judgment after trial of any woman,
for slander,-to the hurting of anybody's living,
welfare or honorable repute,- the woman's hus-
band or next natural man kindred (it being
proven for sure) should pay in fine therefore, five
hund'ed pound o' tobacco, if that he did choose;
but if he did not so choose, why then the
woman must be ducked, o'er head and ears,
three times, for that her aforesaid offense. So,
mark ye well that word choose, neighbors.
Therein runneth the root of my fair objection.
What an easy come-off was it, to be sure, for him
that might be more stingily saving of his tobacco
than of 's lawful, wedded wife; or, may happen,
might bear some little secret grudge in 's heart
againstt the same. Truly no man o' proper gen-
teel pride will choose his womankind to suffer
such disgracement; yet thus was the profit in
fines oft lost, belike, to the State, by will of a.
sorry churl. Now a man must needs hold tight
rein at home, as we all do know, for peace an'
comfort's sake, an' the man's born ruling-right -
yet 't was ever againstt the natural grain o' me to
see a woman rough-handled in public. Nay,
for all I be myself a man, an' looking from mine
own lawful side, I could ne'er abear that sight.
To be sure, they are too oft but misbehaving






THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


creatures an' that's truth; but them the good
Lord did make as well as us, belike, with all
their misbehavingness inside, an' (so the blessed
Psalmist saith) we must suffer fools gladly whilst
the world standeth, for here they '11 always be.
Now Goody Grill was the only one woman
ever ducked under that law in our town or in
all those parts nigh surrounding. 'T was a nota-
able business, that, and a mighty talk an' clamor,
both then and afterwhile, concerning the same.
" Let 's hear it now," say ye ? Well, well, 't is a
longish tale, forsooth yet of such right comi-
cal turn as saveth from dullness. I '11 not grudge
the telling o' 't to them that will duly listen.
In faith your true-born story-teller can no more
abear interruption (nor neither should) than your
singer with instruments, or a lover bewhisper-
ing his sweetheart. There be some folks quick
enow at asking for a tale, yet when 't is fairly
begun, with head an' tongue a-warming to the
business- how then? Why, lo! one will be
rolling his eye this way- another whispering
some outside foolery, that; whilst here is some-
body maybe, on t' other hand, with eyes shut an'
mouth unmannerly open, a-snoring, fast in sleep.
Howsoever, I have told this one to your betters
afore now when the red wine was going round
to boot-an' they scarcely durst swallow or fetch
breath for listening. So, since ye 're finely press-
ing, I '11 e'en begin; but hark ye, this in warn-
ing; for all I be good-humored as the most, let
me but catch aught like these wandering signs
amongst you -mum is my word!
Well, as for Goody Grill she was for certain
(as everybody said) one o' them that law was
pointedly made for. Whomsoever the cap be-
fits may wear it, as the old saying goeth, an'
never mob-cap nor Sunday gauze an' lacery did
so well suit her mischief-brewing head, I trow,
as that same. Feast or fast, marrying or bury-
ing, young ones' frolic or old ones' falling out -
her finger must needs be in everybody's pie, her
long tongue in everybody's matters. Not that
she was o'er much of a gadder abroad; nay, to
give Satan his due (as the word runneth), not so
-she being the rather contrariwise, an' closer
housekeeper than ordinary. Yet for the house
itself that she inhabited, 't was in the very middle
o' the town, well windowed on all sides. North,
south, east, an' west was her outlook -rain or


shine. So there was she, like any great o'er fat
spider in its web, a-waiting fool-flies for her
catching; only them did she suck not bodily
bone-dry o' flesh an' blood but the rather in a
mindful sense of all the news i' their heads.
'T was a wonderful thing, in sooth (as many
spoke), and a thing to shake head o'er,-nay,
hone short of a dark true mystery in nature, no
less,-how much she did make shift to hear an'
tell again. An' yet 't is plain enow, come to
reason on 't an' considering well the nature o'
female creatures. She 'd a way with women
as 't were a drawing spell. No matter how oft
they 'd be' a-falling out with her; no matter
how many tales, scandals, an' strange, injurious
hintings of their misbehavior might be tracked
home to her door there would they be, next
whipstitch (the silly ones!), hob-gossiping by
her fire again, a-telling all their secrets, an' next
neighbors' besides, o'er a glass o' her currant
wine. To be sure her wine was of the best
home-made, an' scarce to be refused, as also all
her brewing an' cookery; for nobody could say
true that she did neglect aught of housewife's
business, for all her wagging tongue. Her hus-
band was but a timorsone, pottering soul; a
mighty little small body, an' looking mayhap
like she 'd stepped o 'er his head in 's younger
days an' stopped short his natural growth; as
old folks say such overstepping will, sure enough.
Notwithstanding, for all his undersize an' his
meekness in ordinary, he 'd a sharpish glint in 's
little pale eyes, and a sharpish tang i' the turn
o' his tongue that I 've seen her taken aback by
more times than one. He 'd a natural-born
turn for double meanings in speech (had old
Tommy Grill), and a humor sense o' the comi-
cal sort that she could ne'er catch up with -
an' that's truth. She was the glibber tongued,
to be sure, but he was the quicker thoughted.
Many 's the time I 've heard him point a sly
word againstt her that would set all a-smiling but
herself- who, notwithstanding she did feel the
sharpness o' 't, was neither quick enow to tell
straight wherein it lay or have back answer
ready. Howsoever, 't was not oft he troubled
her, being belike half-lazy, half-afeard to try
such game o'er much.
Now, she 'd neither chick nor child; an' being
of a shrewish, managing turn 't was hard lines


408





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


409


an' little peace for poor old Tom- as ye may
guess, neighbors. Truly, as I told you afore, no-
body might ever say that she neglected her house-
wife's duties. So He 'd ha' been glad enow of
a bit neglecting, would old Tommy, I do reck'.
Whether she let him wash his own face himself, or
did that business for him (as well as combing of his
wig, no less), I never rightly did know for certain.
Faith! 't was no lawful wonder that he looked
half washen away an' scarce bigger than a ball
o' soap after hard day's scrubbery therewith.
Ne'er such a scrubber an' polisher as she was
there in all our town, as was commonly allowed
by even the notablest women-folk. For mine
own part, I would never choose floor too white-
sanded to step 'cross it in peace or my chair too
slippery shining for aught but a looking-glass.
Less of cleaning, more of easeful living comfort,
better suiteth my notion, who am (to be sure)
but a mere man in habitudes; yet your house-
wife will have it that such painstaking is a saving
virtue. Praise to whom praise is due, but 't is
pity her speech matched not her fair house an'
furnishings. Zounds! she was a caution to
bachelors seeking wives; yet every human hath
a soft spot somewhere or t' other. There was one
body i' this world againstt whom she ne'er spake
word-an' that was Peggy Joy.
In sooth, 't was no wonder her favor set that
way, so far as concerned the maid herself, for
she was the takingest little wench in all Virginia,
to my mind an' thinking, whosoever might speak
contrariwise. Aye, aye; for once in my life I
did set horses with Goody Grill i' that affection;
an' however much the towns-folk might talk of
her airs an' her graces, her high-flighting looks
an' lady-fine ways in general, her rings on fingers
an' silken ribbands a-flying; how despitefully
soever they might cry Lady Peacock or Mis-
tress Mincing what time she walked abroad,-
why, this I'll say for the lass, she was pretty-
behaved as any to me. Give you good day,
Master Muffet!" would she say when we did
meet. In sooth, I do 'most see her now, the
pretty slim creature; an' for all her saucy brown
head ('t would be mayhap a bit too far to one
side), her smile was fairly enow, faith! to make
old hearts turn back, young again. Neverthe-
less 't was but common nature for a young, gay
thing like that to be set up in mind as she 'd
VOL. XVII.-49.


been properly born to in station. Now there
were few gentle-born folk in our town, they be-
ing mostly the common sort who there inhabited;
but e'en 'mongst such gentlefolk as were, I
promise you that Master Fanfare Joy (the father
o' Mistress Peg) was mightily looked up to. Ye
see he was own third-cousin, or some such kin, to
my Lord Babble, in Chopshire County, Eng-
land; him whose title and estate our town was
named for. Then there was his house, forsooth,
past matching in the country; builded on the
main middle street and all of blood-red brick
fetched 'cross water on shipboard from Manches-
ter town; an' seeing that all other dwellings
thereabout were but of wood, as well as right
make-a-shift building besides (for there be no
stones to speak of in that part o' Virginia), an'
seeing how that she was sole heiress to such
grand place and station--'t is no wonder, say I,
that the lass showed a bit uplifted, now and
again. 'T will be always your would-be gentle-
folk that mislike the real quality. Aye, how-
soever much they do pay court to their company
there 's ever a thorn o' comparison a-rankling
deep in heart; but I was always well content
(thank the good Lord!) with my plain, decent
station. I was ne'er one o'er forward to shake
hands with my betters an' then to fleer at 'em
afterward for having the softer palm; an' whether
't was this same backwardness in nature that
pleased her I know not, but one thing I know
for certain, as I spoke afore, the maid did al-
ways carry it mannerly enow with me.
Now, it did appear a right strange, curious
turn that Goody Grill, who had in common
been first one to pick flaws an' cast blame,-
't was strange that Goody should be so fondly-
hearted toward the child; an' no less uncom-
mon it was that Mistress Peggy (considering o'
the difference in age an' quality) should set such
store by Goody Grill; but so did their favor
continue, from Missy's toddling baby-times
clean on till the main happening o' this tale
came to pass, when she was counting a-most
fifteen year old. Scarce a day went by but she 'd
be lifting the latch of Goody's door, on tip-
toes (may happen), i' the early days, when she
was no more 'an knee-high to a lame duck, yet
't was n't long 'fore she shot high enow for that
or aught else a-going. So then 't would be not


g89o.]





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


alone currant wine, I promise you, but cakes
an' conserves, tarts an' sweetings, to boot-as
't were the very heart o' the innermost cup-
board turned fairly inside out. Not that the
maid was anywise greedy. Nay, nay; she was
lady-fine an' dainty as the queen herself, but the
dame would press all o' the best upon her. She
was a rare one for flower-growing, too, was
Goody Grill, tho' ne'er given to pluck 'em over-
much. It seemeth to me that 's what they
bloom for, an' would be their
own selves asking you to do, if
so 't were they might speak.
Now she was commonly for say- ,
ing o' the seed; yet let Mistress
Peggy but look longingly at one
among'em-London Pride or
Johnny-jump-up, cockscomb or
marigold, red rose or white .i..
't was hers for the plucking, an'
double welcome. Nobody durst
say word againstt the child when
Goody was by, how sharp soever
their tongues might be at it-
cut an' thrust-with all other
folk in Babbletown; nor, for
mine own part, do I think (as
some said) that 't was court to
the lassie's station, this rare kind-
ness o' hers, but the rather true
natural heart's affection--the
which was after proven. -
So, well, as concerning the
other folk that do figure i' this
tale, there be but only two more 4
to tell of in particular; namely,
Sukey Steptoe an' her boy Will.
Now as for Sukey Steptoe;
she was but a widow woman,
for her husband having gone
with a hunting company to the
mountains one time (when Will
was but very little an' small) was by the red
Indians most barbarously killed an' scalpen.
So that was the last o' him, as of several
others in that party likewise; an' Sukey, his
wife, lived on, in a doleful widowing way, and
i' the same house that he had builded, on a
smallish clearing, situate 'mongst the pines just
outside Babbletown. 'T was a poor place for a


living, and a poor, scant manner o' life; yet, had
she set in together with the lad, shoulder to
shoulder, when he 'd fetched to a sizable age -
had she so allowed-they might ha' done fairly
well enow, by mouth an' back. He was a likely
lad as any, an' nimble-ready as the best; but
women be too oft simple-witted no less than soft
in heart where their young ones are concerned,
an' Suke must needs make him a gentleman,
forsooth. How she did get wherewithal for his


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TOMMY GRILL.
rigging-out, goodness knoweth! Linsey-woolsey,
and one frock o' that, to her back, was good
enow for her own self, an' nobody could say
that she ever complained on 't; but Master Will
must have his ruffled shirt o' fair linen, his fine
laced coat, an' hat with feathers a-flying; his ker-
chief in 's hand, his feet drest out with sewn
shoes, an' clock-wrought stockings. A pretty


[MAR.





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


orphan was he! as all the house-mothers said;
an' their sons with fathers 'live an' warm scarce
fit to hold a candle to his fineness. Ne'er would
they (as they stoutly vowed) give to him or his
foolish mother so much as a finger's wrapping;
yet for the matter o' that, I do vastly mis-
doubt if either Sukey or the lad would ha' been
meekly thankful for such gift. Howsoever, let
but a boy be comely an' hold up his head with
a knowing air, an' 't is little the younger women
(or may happen some old ones, either) will be
caring how much he worketh for the clothes
on's back. Now, Will was a pretty fellow, to be
sure, with 's hair gold-yellow an' curly, as 't were
done on curling tongs (which maybe 't was, in
sooth), and eyes that shamed the sky's blueness.
When he did use to come, gay whistling, in all
his deckery so fiddle-fine into the town each
day for this, that, an' t' other thing,-as to Tib
Tucker's shop for a ha'pennyworth o' green
ginger, or some such vast business matter,-
why, 't was little the giddy maids, a-smiling
back answers to his saucy looks, took thought
of's mother left moiling behind. Day in and
out she did slave i' the corn-plant or tobacco, or
did 'tend her pigs an' hens, or else weave at the
loom, maybe, with spinning or knitting betwixt
whiles, an' such woman's work as by in-taking
she did eke out their living withal; an' this that
a strapping lad past twelve year old should be
taking it leisurely abroad. Aye, there 's no tell-
ing the nature o' mothers-or mothers' sons,
neither; but I 'm thinking she that so bred an'
sent him forth was more to blame than the lad.
'T was in late summer o' the year sixteen hun-
d'ed an' sixty-four, nigh about six months or so
after the ducking law was made, an' likewise
nigh about the time when Mistress Peggy Joy
went off a-visiting her grand kinfolks in York
County, when the slander againstt Will Steptoe
was first set going round. I mind well my meet-
ing the maid one sunshiny morn i' the street, a
bit outside Goody Grill, her door. Good-bye
to you, Master Muffet," saith she, with the tak-
ingest sweet smile in nature, an' such as shamed
in brightness e'en the very sky's blue, or her fine
new rig-up o' feathers an' fal-lals for the journey.
"'T will be many a day 'fore I see you again, or
anybody in Babbletown. Good-bye an' good
luck to you," quoth she, an' she put out her little


lily-white hand as to a gentleman born. Then
off she goeth her way down street like any trip-
piting fairy; an' 't was later on o' that very same
mortal day that I did first catch the bruit con-
cerning Will Steptoe.
Now, truly, your slander is the only rolling
stone that's bound to gather moss. 'T is the
bruisingest stone i' this round world; aye, worse
than cobble or flint, an' the one that sinketh deep-
est; and no matter how little 't is at starting, the
longer it rolleth the bigger 't will get. Now, no-
body troubled to ask who started that stone a-
rolling, smashing down atop of Will Steptoe,
his character; but one and all they were ready
enough, forsooth, to stick on a bit o' moss.
'T would be, may happen, but a black look and
a head-shake, when that lad passed by, or else
one a-saying to t'other (secret like), Look
keen to thy belongings, neighbor, for folks do say
he 's not to be trusted." Or else here would
come another, with winks an' blinks for all the
world like any owl i' the sun, saying, "Aye,
aye! For my part, I did never think so much
finery on a widow's orphan was like to be hon-
estly come by." Then would they sigh an' groan
dolefully, yet as one might shrewdly see withal
-not wanting inside satisfaction. So it did pass;
an' for all those o'erplain words rogue an' thief
were not unmannerly spoken, why, the meaning
don't was plain enow, to wit: That Will was a
thief an' his mother no better than partaker in
profit o' his naughtiness.
Well, so did this rumor spread from day to
day. Nobody said to a certainty what 't was he
had stole. Perchance one would be saying now
how somebody had him told 't was one thing;
then another vowing that he'd heard tell 't was
somewhat else; an' so matters went, that-a-way,
-till at last one time Will did hear it with 's own
ears, and after this manner that happed.
Now, 't was in Tib Tucker's shop, where he
did come for a ball of sewing-thread, an' he 'd
come with a new silken kerchief tied smartly
round his neck. So there were all eyes a-glanc-
ing sidewise at the kerchief (which same, as did
afterward come out, was given new to Sukey by
one of our town gentlewomen not long afore),
an' there was Master Will, the fool fellow!
mightily pleased with his setting-off; when all
on a sudden who doth cry out but one o' Tib






THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


Tucker's young ones, mighty loud an' shrill,
with the shop full of townsfolk hearing, saying,
" Billy Steptoe Billy Steptoe where did you
steal yon kerchief ?"
So the lad looked around, laughing at that,
yet when he saw the people's faces, forsooth,
an' how they did look strangely from him unto
each other,-as 't were in dark meaning way,-
why, then he turned as white as his shirt (which
was, to be sure, of a fair fine linen, an' clean
beyond his lawful quality), an' he speaketh out
loud, with voice a-tremble for rage, "If any-
body saith I steal," quoth he, the devil hath
stole his wits."
With that he walketh out o' the shop, a-slam-
ming the door behind him. Straight home he
goeth to tell his tale; an' pretty soon cometh
Sukey Steptoe into the town, a very figure o'
passion, poor soul, with her head 'way up yon-
der, an' her face twixtt death-white one second,
an' fire-red the next.
Zounds! what a clamor and a-going on was
there, to be sure! with her'fending an' her prov-
ing, her scolding an' her weeping, her crying out
againstt such cruel slander-up an' down the
town. 'T was no wonder, i' faith, that every
man jack of 'em that had put tongue's end in
the business was so make-a-shift an' ready to lay
it on 's next neighbor's back. Nay, they did
know naught concerning it, the innocent, meek
lambs! An' 't was all Such an one's say so," or
else, As I did hear tell," with but poor memo-
ries to fall back on. Howsoever, the governor's
lady herself had been scarce more roused up
by that word "steal," I reckon, than Dame
Sukey that time. From house to house did she
go, till folks must, for very peace's sake, needs
give authority; so the long an' short on 't was
that all did trace back to starting with Goody
Grill. That much did she find out for certain
(as nobody might deny or did take great pains
to hide); an' Sukey was a knowing woman, for
a widow, in some matters, notwithstanding a
fool-creature in others. She 'd heard o' the new
law, according to which same it was that she
had Goody arrested an' brought unto trial in
court -which did chance to be then sitting -
the very next day after.
Now, as to the ins and outs o' that trial,'t would
make a tale over long to tell; but't was a right


notable one an' well remembered in Babbletown
a-many a day. The proving an' the 'fending
on it, the calling to witness of this one, that,
or t' other, the judging an' the jurying, I did see
with mine own eyes an' hear with mine own
ears-being myself one amongst them that
filled the court-house nigh to bursting that day.
Few on 'em were truly sorry for her, the pris-
oner, I do reck', seeing how scarce a one was
there but had some time or other felt the malice
o' her tongue. Some were a bit scared to think
how nigh their own selves had come (as part-
takers) to the same pass as she, an' most were
right glad in heart belike to have so well
escapen. As to Goody herself, she durst not
deny the fact, nor neither could, of saying so
an' so; only she stoutly affirmed one thing,
namely, that somebody had her told, afore she
ever spoke or thought on 't, that Will was a
rogue. This would she take her Bible-oath on,
said she, yet did she flatly refuse, forsooth, to
tell this person's name. So that made the rather
against her; for all said, Tush! 't is a cunning
come-off for her own naughtiness, an' nobody
did tell her any such a word "; an' moreover, no
dishonesty at all being proven on Will Steptoe
nor Sukey neither, why, then, the lawful sen-
tence was passed upon Goody Grill of either a
fine or a ducking.
Now, she 'd never a notion to be ducked, I
warrant, for all the bigness o' the fine. 'T was
a pretty price to buy off with, but she was a
proud one-was Goody Grill. 'T was told she
was so struck amaze with rage, when old Tommy
did refuse to pay, that she spake not a single word
for two minutes space; yet I reckon she made
up for 't when that she 'd once fetched breath.
'T is like, if she 'd been out o' guard, with her

ten talons once upon him, there 'd pretty soon
ha' been end on 't all-one way or t' other.
Howsoever, there was she, in lawful durance
held; an' there was he (with all Virginia law on
his side) who said nay, an' stuck to 't. Now,
he was ne'er counted a stingy man, old Tommy,
an' five hund'ed pound o' tobacco, or the money
value o'that same, would neither ha' maked him
or breaked him, for he'd a goodish fifty acres of
land a mile outside the town that fetched to-
bacco fine an' plenty as any in those parts.
Tobacco was money all o'er Virginia, the same


[MAR.






THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


then as now, an' dwelled folks in country or
dwelled they in town 't was tobacco kept 'em
a-going. 'T was tobacco they did eat, an' to-
bacco they drank, an' tobacco they wore on
their backs; 't was tobacco that married 'em in


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WILL STEPTOE.

church an' buried 'em in church-yard. Now,
five hund'ed pound was a pretty sum; aye,
aye, a goodish sum; but I 'm thinking that
was n't the only one reason that set old Tom
so fast againstt payment thereof.
I mind that time o' the ducking well, an' liker
't were yesterday than some thirty year agone.
'T was a sharpish morn o' frost in November
month, with a little skim of ice on the horse-
pond, but mighty clear an' sunshiny--an' 't was
the second day after trial. Folks mince law
matters finer these days, an' be longer about 'em,
but 't was touch an' go then. Most all the
town was up an' stirring, grave an' gay, young
an' old, out to see that sight; for 't was no such


a thing as did come off commonly, being not
only the first ducking under that new law, in
our parts (and Goody Grill herself a notable
character), but the first public punishment for
misbehavior in long while; nay, none other
since Sam Crook was stood in pillory with 's ears
marked for hog-stealing. There be some fine
feeling ones in these days that will have it to
say how even solemn, orderly hanging is no
sight for decent folks to see, let alone duckings,
whippings, settings-up in pillory, an' the like
spectacles. Yet others ask how can one profit
by the lawful sample, forsooth, if he seeth it
not?
So went I with t' others to the open space
round the pond, where stood the post an' beam
ducking-stool a-ready, over againstt the water's
edge. 'T was e'en nine o' the clock when I did
fetch there, being nigh the very last to come, an'
there were all a-looking gaol-way every minute
for the prisoner.
Faith! but what a-crooking o' necks and a-
goggling of eyes was there !-an' when Master
Fanfare Joy spake up mockingly, saying, Nay,
be not so eager, good people, for I warrant
she '11 let ye know when she cometh," why,
everybody laughed at his wit. There was
that gentleman, grandly drest, a-standing like
the commoners, yet to be sure as one most too
proud to look; but as to his daughter, Mistress
Peggy, she had not come back to the town.
Two or three times had Goody, since the trial,
asked concerning her, if so 't were she had yet
come, and all did think how she was right well
pleased that the maid should thus know an' see
naught of her public disgrace. There was Tib
Tucker with her 'leven young ones all a-row,
having shut up shop that morn an' fetched all,
big an' little, to learn a lesson againstt telling
tales on neighbors. There was Sukey Steptoe,
in her best frock, with her face the face of a
woman that winneth upper hand o'er her enemy;
yet Master Will himself was not to be seen, an'
some folk whispered 'round how that he did ap-
pear the rather holpen than hurt by this busi-
ness, being not nigh so much abroad and a deal
busier at home.
But of all them there a-waiting the foremost
one, an' the earliest, an' the one most in holiday
fashion bedecked, was old Tommy Grill.


413





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


Truly it maketh me laugh, even this day, to
think o' that old sinner an' the way he did look
that time. A mighty long face he did pull, now
and again, with a solemn, melancholic shake o'
the head belike, for looks' sake; and all the while
there stood he in 's best holiday clothes (silk
hosen, an' buckles, and all) that she'd scarce give
him touch of in ordinary; there was he rigged
out, fairly chuckling in 's throat to see her pub-
licly discomfited.
Well, well! a right long time we waited, but
I know not how long by the clock, 'fore some-


like would ha' been more in keeping. Her
head she did hold high as the best, a-looking
all boldly i' the eye, an' she was carefuller drest
than common in her second-best stuff gown.
'T is told to be ever the way on 't with women
that did publicly suffer for anything. Be it
hanging or burning or ducking with 'em; stripes
laid on or heads cut off; be they queens or be
they subjects; from the Lady Bullen, that was
Queen Elizabeth's own mother, to Goody Grill
in Babbletown they '11 ne'er forget well dress-
ing up for the same. There she did come -


-, -r-t


Rd'





~- --- i .-, ..-.- --. *-PEGGY JOY ---

PEGGY JOY.


body nigh on gaol-side raised a shout saying,
"There come they! There come they! An'
presently we did see Goody coming, sure enow,
with the sheriff and others of 's company.
Now, she looked taller than common, as did
seem to me, 'stead o' the contrariwise smaller -


"K'






-P


and all the other folks a-making way, with whis-
pering an' staring. Steady she looked out o'
the eyes, for all her chin 't was a bit quaking,
till on a sudden, having come near the ducking
place, whom doth she set eyes on but Tommy
Grill! Zounds! how red her face did turn at




THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


that sight 'T was redder than old Tom's waist-
coat, i' faith, which same showed, may happen,
of a brightness scarce befitting his age. I did
think one minute that she was like for a stroke
o' the vertigo, by the way she puffed an' blew;
but the next she found her strength aye, an'
her speech too quick enow.
So then she crieth, a-tremble from head to
foot for very passion, "What, sir What! Is 't
thou! thou poor creature thou whey-face! thou
hop-o'er-my-thumb! thou stingy no-man! a-
standing by to see thy wife mistreated! "
Then quoth old Tommy right meekly, in 's
little, small voice (for all his eyes they did twinkle
'way deep down), "'T is oft told (saith he) a
husband should stand by his wife."
Now, in sooth, that did make her madder than
before; an' no wonder, neither. Whereupon
she crieth out still louder, "A pretty husband
thou-so decked out in thy best for my dis-
gracement as 't were Christmas or Easter or
some such uncommon day! How darest thou,
sirrah, put on those clothes ?" Then saith old
Tom (an' his voice 't was a bit softer than afore),
"'T is the most uncommonest day, this day,
that ever I did see; an' for the sadness on 't or
the gladness on 't" (quo' he), "why, that is as
one looketh this way or t' other."
Then she made a dash at him as 't were to
tear the coat off his back;-or maybe him limb
from limb; howsoever, he made shift to dodge
her cunningly, whilst Mark Toucham, the sher-
iff, an' two of his company, advancing, led her
toward the big ducking-stool that was creaking
there hard by. So next they did read out the
sentence on her, in due form an' loudly, that all
might hear an' know 't was fairly done in ac-
cordance; but yet when everything seemed
a-ready, lo 't was found that the beam o' the
ducking-stool was not o'er-strong and must needs
have something done to help its working. Truly
it did creak, an' the chair, too, no less, as fairly
like to break with Goody's weight; and every-
body roundabout was a-listening for dear life
what should come next.
So then she (being fast i' the ducking-stool)
did cast up her eyes to skyward an' say in a
loud voice, dolefully, Oh to think,- to think
how many fine matches I did refuse,- to think
how many a brave fellow, tall an' rich an'


comely, did come in my young days a-courting
me, who am now tied to such a husband! Fool,
fool, that I was!" (crieth she) "to choose the
like o' such a creature! Was never such another
ne'er-do-well! Would I had married Peter Still
- for all he was deaf an' dumb "
Whereupon saith old Tommy, with a twink-
ling eye,
Aye, aye, my lass; he 'd ha' made thee the
fittingest husband, belike, of any in this world."
Now, them that stood near by mustneeds smile
at that, an' she, screeching out in very passion,
crieth, "Oh! oh! oh! thou misbehaving! I
will splash thee top an' toe !"
To which speech did her loving husband make
answer, saying,
"Aye, aye; 't will be good for Sunday clothes.
Mar your own making, wife, if so 't will ease
your mind. 'T is all one to me" (quoth he),
"being, thank Heaven, never o'ermuch set on
the looks o' things."
Then lo! she 'gan to weep, forsooth, with the
tears a-rolling down, crying, Oh! the fine
stitchery that I did waste upon that coat!
Would that I had sewn it with pack-thread
and a skewer! Oh! oh! alack-a-day, alack-
a-day! 't will be the death o' me. I shall be
wetted to the skin."
In sooth, I was sorry for the poor soul then-
but as for heartless old Tommy Grill he was
smiling from one ear to t' other.
"'T is a right cold case to be in," quoth he,
"an' that's truth. Wet to the skin was I with
the rain t' other day thou mindest ? when I
might ne'er come anigh the fire, thou saidst,
because o' thy floor new sanded. Aye; 't is a
right shivering business" (quo' he), "an', dear
wife, prythee do not catch cold."
Well, such a look as she gave him! but by
that time all was a-ready 'fore she might open
her mouth. Out she swung over the water-
and down came the ducking-stool with such a
screak as never did I hear. All the women-
folks went "Oh-h-h! "Ee-e-e for all the
world like they did feel the cold water each
one down her own back. Even Sukey Steptoe
crieth, Lord ha' mercy on her! an' shut her
eyes up tight. Yet, truth to tell, the water i' the
pond (as did appear) had scarce touched the
hem o' Goody's gown; an' that very time it was,


415










Ab


I''.
J.


1.


I

a -


.7


"AS FOR THE MAID, A-LAUGHING WITH ONE EYE AN' CRYING WITH T' OTHER, WHAT DOTH SHE, FORSOOTH, BUT FLING HER TWO ARMS 'ROUND GOODY'S NECK."


( ,... A,.(,\ A ,., .


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~CIZ~j ;c..;iQ~,





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


whilst everybody did catch breath, just 'fore
the real dip, when we heard another screak
'way off yonder at the outermost edge o' the
crowd.
Then Mark Toucham an' t' others helping
him stopped short at that, and all the people
turned round vastly wondering, whilst as for
Goody Grill, there she sat, ready for the ducking,
all her teeth a-chatter. Somebody was coming
an' calling out "Wait! wait! stop! stop "
I thought I knew that voice by the sweetness
on 't, to be sure,-as I reck' did also Goody
Grill her own self,-and I knew the little lily-
white hand a-waving of a kerchief. All the folks
made way for her, right an' left, a-staring, open-
mouthed, to. see who 't was--an' there she
came, fast as her best speed would fetch her,
who but Mistress Peggy Joy I
Well, well! There was she, bareheaded, all of
a tremble for running, with her pretty frock all
awry with haste o' coming thro' the crowd, an'
her pretty ribbands all untied disorderly. Her
face 't was red as any red rose, an' her pretty
eyes a-blazing, for all she did look ready to cry
next word. Twice or thrice did she fetch breath
(when that she stopped and stood) with both
hands on her heart, an' then, a-wringing 'em,
she cried out loud, "Oh, Goody! Goody!
Goody! in that pitiful-sweet a way as shamed
us all, there looking, clean to naught. I '11 war-
rant the old woman would ha' wrung her hands
too, only (ye see) her hands they were tied fast
with a long silken kerchief,- so there she sat
shamedly, with her head down far as 't would
be hid on her breast, saying ne'er a word.
Then crieth Mistress Peg:
Let her go I pray you let her go. 'T is
me you must be ducking, if 't is anybody"
(quo' she), for I 'm the one to blame. 'T was
I, 't was I that said he was a rogue, an' she
would not t'll upon me. Oh, prythee let her
go!"
Then Goody did give a kind o' groan, and
all the people stood amazed. Whereupon went
on the maid, saying:
"Nay, but I meant no harm. In sooth,"
crieth she, right distressfully, I meant no harm
in this world, nor ever did think of her taking it
so in earnest an' telling that same again. I
never said he stole aught. I did but say he was
VOL. XVII.-5o.


a sad rogue, as one may speak, mayhap, about
one's naughty little brother."
An' so, as did appear, was the beginning o'
that slanderous rumor, thus so curiously a-turn-
ing on the turn of one single word, an' the end
on 't was that Goody Grill came off with one
dip under and a vast deal less o' blame than
anybody 'd looked for. Mark Toucham was
a straitly law-abiding man, fair-sticking by the
letter, an' none too well pleased in's mind to let
her go, for all the people's clamor and beseech-
ing. Yet when Master Fanfare Joy did, speak
out, taking to himself, 'fore everybody, all risk
of that business, why then he made no more
ado contrariwise, but let mercy have her way,
despite of law an' justice. As for that sweet
maid, Mistress Peggy, a-laughing with one eye
an' crying with t' other, what doth she, forsooth,
but fling her two arms 'round Goody's neck,
when that she stepped all dripping from the
stool, and kiss her i' the mouth! And what doth
Goody Grill her own self at that embracement
but burst right out a-crying!. And all the folks
they 'gan to whisper thereupon, saying one to
t' other: '' Who 'd ha' thought o' the old scandal-
mongering soul having so much forbearance in-
side of her heart toward any human creature "
Aye; 't was lucky chance for Goody Grill,
I 'm thinking, that little Mistress Peggy did
come back so, on a sudden, all unlocked for,
on that day.
Now, 't would have fared hard with old Tom,
I do reck', when that she did get free, but for
this turn of matters. Homeway he 'd slily be-
ta'en himself when he saw the tide so set, an'
homeway went Goody when all was said an'
done. Folks said, a-laughing, as how 't would
be "pull Dick, pull Devil," twixtt them twain that
day. The manner o' that I know not, since no-
body saw 'em nor neither heard, but one thing I
know for certain, namely: that Goody did come
to church on Sunday sennight in a frock that
must ha' cost some goodish part out o' the five
hund'ed pounds o' tobacco. I 'm thinking 't is
like he was glad enough to buy his peace so
cheap.
Howbeit, after that Goody was carefuller of
her speech, having, mayhap, no mind to be
ducked again, notwithstanding she had so well
escapen; and all other women in Babbletown


417





THE DUCKING OF GOODY GRILL.


did likewise profit by this example. Aye, there
was more looking into matters and less idle
speaking out, from that day amongst 'em. In
sooth, as did appear, that business had done the
rather good than harm, seeing 't was not alone
the gossips that found the warning o' 't profit-
able. There was Will Steptoe, who did leave
off his false finery an' take kindly to work,
to say naught of old Tommy Grill, the more
respected at home and abroad all the rest of
his days.
'T was a right curious turn-about, that last,
an' to my mind scarce deserved, yet true, sure
enow, no less. Concerning Mistress Peggy Joy,
't is said she was ever friends with Goody, yet
none too oft a visitor, from that time, she hav-


ing well proven, maybe, the danger o' such com-
pany-keeping. Faith! she was a maid to bear
in mind, was Mistress Peggy. 'T was after I 'd
left those parts that she took up with an' mar-
ried Will Steptoe. For mine own part I did
never admire her choice. I reckon that Master
Fanfare Joy was as much cast down by that
match as Sukey Steptoe, on t' other hand, up-
liften; yet Will was a fine young man, to be
sure, as everybody would be telling. Aye, aye;
a fine knowledgeable man; but how much is
nature and how much is chance nobody know-
eth in this mortal world, or ever can tell; and
oft I 've fell a-wondering (to think on 't) how
much Will Steptoe, in 's proper turning out, did
owe to Goody Grill her tongue.


OFF FOR SLUMBERLAND.

BY CAROLINE EVANS.

PURPLE waves of evening play
Upon the western shores of day,
While babies sail, so safe and free,
Over the mystic Slumber Sea.

Their little boats are cradles light;
The sails are curtains pure and white;
The rudders are sweet lullabies;
The anchors, soft and sleepy sighs.

They 're outward-bound for Slumberland,
Where shining dreams lie on the sand,
Like whisp'ring shells that murmur low
The pretty fancies babies know.

And there, among the dream-shells bright,
The little ones will play all night,
Until the sleepy tide turns;-then
They '11 all come sailing home again!








COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.

FRIENDS OR FOES?

By ELBRIDGE S. BROOKS.


(THIS comedy is designed for representation by the
higher classes in schools, and aims to interpose a plea in
behalf of wholesome historical myths as against much of
the sensational juvenile literature of the day. Set the
stage for the court scene, covering the tables and chairs
with dark stuff to answer for the wood scene, or rocky
pass, in which the comedy opens. The progress of the
piece indicates the stage properties needed. They may


be elaborated or restricted as circumstances permit.
Music should be introduced for interludes, or choruses,
whenever practicable, in order to accompany or diversify
the representation. Any one with a ready ear can adapt "
familiar tunes to suit any selected song or chorus. Let
the parts be given to good performers, and spoken with
animation and force. The court scene should be made
as solemn and "judicial" as possible.)


Characters.
CLIO, Muse of History (girl of 18). DIDo, Queen of Carthage,
THE LORD CHIEF JUSTICE (boy of 17). NERO, Emperor of Rome,
THE STATE'S ATTORNEY (boy of 16). WHITTINGTON, Lord Mayor of Lon- The Myths of
PORTIA PLEADWELL, Counsel for the Defense (girl of don, History
16). JOAN OF ARC, (boys and
THE DETECTIVE, From the Central Office, WILLIAM TELL, girls of from
THE POLICEMAN, Historical Police." POCAHONTAS, 12 to I5).
THE ELECTRICIAN, (boys of 15.) EVANGELINE,
THE CRIER OF THE COURT (boy of 13). YOUNG GEORGE WASHINGTON,
FLEUR DE LYS, Herald of Clio (boy of 12). THE BOY OF MODERN STORY (boy of 12).
Policemen, Guards, Pages, Standard-bearer, Court Officers, and others.


[Suit the costumes to the characters with the fol-
lowing suggestions: Washington should be represented
as a boy with his hatchet, not as a military hero; make
the Boy of Modern Story the impersonation of a sensa-
FRIENDS OR FOES?

[A FOREST scene, or rocky pass. Loud piano, or
flourish of trumpets. Enter Fleur de Lys, the herald,
preceded by standard-bearer, and followed by pages and
guards. He advances front and unrolls a large procla-
mation. Attendants stand right and left.]

FLEUR DE LYS (slowly, and in a loud, official
voice).
Hear ye, hear ye, hear ye Thus Clio, Muse
of History,
Doth proclamation make to circumvent a
mystery.
(Reads Proclamation.)
WHEREAS: We hear with pain that certain
base pretenders,
For many years have vexed our leal and true
defenders,
And in a measure spoiled the reading of the
masses,
Corrupting thus our schools and all our
History classes,-


tional boy-hero, with slouch hat, red shirt, with as much
of blood-and-thunder style as possible in short, let
him be a typical, modern young desperado. The ages
stated are meant only as a guide in selecting the actors.]
THEREFORE: We do withdraw the mercy of
the State,
And do proclaim them all-outlaws and
reprobate.
And, furthermore, do place a price upon the
head
Of each rebellious myth, captured-alive
or dead.
Thus Fleur de Lys, the Herald of Clio, Muse
of History,
Posts these suspicious characters as Partisans
of Mystery.
Item: One William Tell, who claims, without
a show of reason,
He shot an apple off his son and dabbled
some in treason;
Item: One Pocahontas, who claims, 't is
proved quite wrongly,
She saved the life of one John Smith by
interceding strongly;
Item: One Emperor Nero, who claims, the
records spuming,






COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


He fiddled on the walls of Rome while all
the town was burning;
Item: One maid--Joan of Arc who claims
she'll undertake
To prove she whipped the English hosts and
perished at the stake;
Item: One young George Washington, who
claims (and won't he catch it !)
A strange conglomeration of a cherry-tree
and hatchet;
Item : One named Evangeline, a maid peripa-
tetic,
Who claims a vanished Lover and a Story
most pathetic;
Item: One Richard Whittington, who claims
a doubtful story
Of how a cat and London Bells brought him
both wealth and glory;
Item: One Dido, royal dame, who claims a
Lover and Fire;
The Lover fled, while she ('t is said) burned
on her funeral-pyre.
These all are myths! Let none escape! So
end all tools of mystery.
Long live the State! Long live the
Truth!
Signed: Clio, Muse of History.
[Fleur de Lys fixes this proclamation in some promi-
nent place--central-and retires with attendants.
Spirited march. Then enter, from opposite side, the
eight Myths. Joining hands, they dance gleefully in a
circle, and then moving forward say (or sing, if practi-
cable) in chorus]:
Gay and free,
Fair to see,
Roving myths we seem to be.
Myths in fact,
Still we act,
Just as if with truths we 're packed.
Oh, what fun,
When we 're done,
Just to see opinions run.
This day, so !-
(swaying to right)
Next day, no !-
(swaying to left)
Through the histories still we go.
All endeavor,
Fruitless ever,
Fact from Fiction to dissever.


[Dido spies the proclamation and starts in dismay.
Each myth solemnly draws his neighbor by the hand to
the paper. They all read, silently, with uplifted hands,
to slow music, and then, turning, come slowly forward
and say (or sing) in chorus] :

I de dare,
What a scare,
All our names are posted there!
(Repeating slowly and solemnly, head on hand.)
All-our-names-are-post-ed-there!

(Then.follows, line by line, this lament.)
WASHINGTON.
From pillar to post,
JOAN OF ARC.
And pillar to post,
WHITTINGTON.
We 're hustled and hurried so,-
EVANGELINE.
Badgered and worried so,-
NERO.
Flustered and flurried so,-
POCAHONTAS.
That at the most,
Little remains for us,-
WILLIAM TELL.
Life has but pains for us,-
DIDo.
Pleasure fast wanes for us,-
ALL (in chorus).
All joy is lost.
WASHINGTON.
No one believes in us; -
JOAN OF ARC.
All see but thieves in us; -
WHITTINGTON.
History grieves in us; -
EVANGELINE.
Vain is our boast.
NERO.
For we are flurried so,-
POCAHONTAS.
Badgered and worried so,-
WILLIAM TELL.
Hustled and hurried so
DIDO.
From pillar to post.
ALL (in chorus).
Hustled and hurried from pillar to post.


[MAR.


420





COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


[They scatter as if about to run away. Then Joan of
Arc, standing central, waves her sword and says] :
JOAN OF ARC (imperiously).
Here let us stand!
On every hand,
We 're only scorned and flouted.
Let each proclaim
His acts and name
Shall never more be doubted.
(They allflock round her.)
WASHINGTON (solemnly).
Year after year,
Our deeds have stood,-
For good or ill- for ill or good.
Why should we now be cast aside?
Why should the world our claims deride,
Year after year,
Year after year ?
EVANGELINE (tearfully).
Ah, woe is me!
A home destroyed;
A lover lost;
The world a void!
I wander and search all the uni-
verse through
For Gabriel -
NERO (interrupting contemptuously).-
There, my young friend, that will do!
You know you are only a fiction poetic
Manufactured to work up a rdle sym-
pathetic.
But think how I,
On the walls of Rome,
Saw my minions fly,
And the hot flames come;
While caring naught, in royal glee,
I fiddled away -
POCAHONTAS (interrupting hastily).
-- Oh, fiddle-de-dee!
My ancestors roamed the Virginia woods,
Savage and free in their haughtiest moods,
Long ere you fiddled down
Your stuffy Roman town.
But I (proudly) gave Captain Smith his
life -
DIDo (interrupting plaintively).
And I was great 'Eneas's wife!
AEneas wise, jEneas brave,
Who to the world an empire gave.


But I, alas, who saw him come -
WHITTINGTON (interrupting flippantly).
Oh, yes you soon were Dido dumb!
But we've heard that once,
And we 've heard it twice -
In fact, I think we've heard it thrice.
But pshaw! what was that
To my trusty cat,
Who killed the Turkish Sultan's mice?
He cleared the palace -
WILLIAM TELL (interrupting).
Yes -that's so!
But then we've heard that, too, you know.
What good does it do?
I might tell, too,
How my arrow I drew
And Gesler I slew -
But what is the use ?
It 's just a misuse
Of our mythical powers
To waste so the hours.
To the world let us make all our boasts and
our glories,
But don't- pray don't -force on each other
our stories!
[A noise outside. The Myths, with hand to ear, listen
intently, and then say, or sing]:
ALL (in chorus).
Hark, hark, hark! We had better go
To some cavern dark--sorrowfully--slow.
Footsteps now we hear,
If we 're found, we fear
We shall all be hounded,
Badgered, pestered, pounded,
By the stem Pretorians,-
Clio's strict historians.
(Exeunt hastily, right.)
[Enter, cautiously, left, Detective, Policeman, Elec-
trician. They search, carefully, with dark lanterns and
say to each other] :
S-st! S-st! S-st!
DETECTIVE.
I surely heard a noise.
ALL (as before).
S-st! S-st! S-st!
POLICEMAN.
It may have been the boys.
DETECTIVE (sees Proclamation).
Why, what is this ?


421






COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


(The others hurry toward it.)
POLICEMAN (scanning it).
'T is Clio's Proclamation.
ELECTRICIAN.
Is it a big reward ?
DETECTIVE.
Let 's get some information.
POLICEMAN.
She 'd pay us well, if we
Could clear them from the nation.

[Low music while the three put their heads together
in consultation. Let the music grow more triumphant
as they shake hands as if agreed upon a plan and then
locking arms, they walk forward, central.]

DETECTIVE (exhibiting his badge).
I 'm the Detective shrewd !
Wherever I intrude
I ferret out all mystery
For Clio, Muse of History.
POLICEMAN (brandishing his club).
I 'm the Policeman stout!
I seize and hustle out
Each vague and vagrant mystery
For Clio, Muse of History.
ELECTRICIAN (displaying his square box, which
he holds gingerly in his hand, and on which
should be painted DYNAMITE ").
I am the Electrician !
And solemn is my mission; -
For I explode each mystery
For Clio, Muse of History.
DETECTIVE.
Come, let us search the spot, we've lots to do
Before we find these tramps.
(They search cautiously.)
Not here?
NERO (sneezing, behind the scenes).
Ker choo!

[Detective, Policeman, Electrician start in astonish-
ment, and then say all together]:

Ha-ha; ha-ha; ha-ha!
We think we heard a sneeze!
DETECTIVE (pointing, right).
The villains are in there.
POLICEMAN (brandishing his club, but not going
in, calls loudly).
Down, traitors, on your knees!


DETECTIVE.
Now the reward is ours!
POLICEMAN (to Electrician).
Get out your dynamite.
ELECTRICIAN.
Guard all the paths and passes;
Let none escape by flight.

[Exit the Electrician, right. The Detective and Po-
liceman watch his motions hopefully -but cautiously.]

DETECTIVE (c ./' .: .'.. ''. .,').
See, now he sets his batteries.
What science! What simplicity!
Don't ask him what the matter is -
Just wait and hear him scatter his
Dynamic electricity.
POLICEMAN (excitedly).
Now close your ears, good people tight !-
The poles are not corroded.
That current starts the dynamite.
Bang! Bang! (Explosion heard.)
DETECTIVE (waving his hat).
Ho, victory!
POLICEMAN (lifting his hands).
What a sight!
POLICEMAN AND DETECTIVE (link arms and
swagger front).
The Myths are all exploded!
(Exeunt right- loud music.)

[While the Myths are behind the scenes let them
throw tattered cloaks over their suits, so that when they
now appear they may look very dilapidated some with
hats off, some with arms in sling, some with bandaged
eye or head, as if just from an explosion or accident].

MYTHS (entering /:.;'., ..'.' to quick music, fol-
lowed by Detective, Policeman, and Electri-
cian driving them in. They speak in chorus).
Our time has come!
Alas, alas!
Now, is not this
A sorry pass ?
Toll, toll the bells,
Romance is dead;
Toll, toll the bells,
Our joy has fled.
Weep o'er our fate -
All kins -all kiths,
For we are now
Exploded Myths!


422







COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


POLICEMAN (authoritatively).
Now to the palace where in solemn court,
The mighty Clio waits our full report.
Close up the ranks, there! March, and cease
your prating,
For lo, the prison-cart outside the door is
waiting.
(Exeunt all to slow music.)
[Here let the change to the court-room be made by
simply removing the coverings from the furniture.
There should be a raised platform with two large chairs,
-one for Clio and one for Chief Justice,-and before
the platform a long table, with chairs for the lawyers;
now enter in procession, Herald, Standard-bearer, Clio
and her pages, Lord Chief Justice, Crier of the Court,
Guards, the State's Attorney, Portia Pleadwell, and
clerks with law-books, etc. Clio and Chief Justice seat
themselves. Crier stands central. Pages, guards, etc.
group themselves appropriately. Standard rests behind
Clio's chair. Opposing counsel and their clerks sit at
either end of the table and arrange their law-books,
papers, etc., with legal importance. Appropriate music
during the assembling.]
CRIER.
Hats off in court!
Keep silence all!
Oyez; oyez; oyez!
Heed now the Crier's call!
All persons having business in this High Court
of Truth,
Are herewith now directed, on pain of fine or
ruth,
To state their business plainly, devoid of legal
mystery,
Before the Lord Chief Justice and Clio, Muse
of History.
THE STATE'S ATTORNEY (rising).
May it please the Court, and you, Serene and
Sovereign Lady:
The State hath apprehended some characters
called "shady,"
To place before the bar, that you may justice
measure,
The criminals who long have braved your
dread displeasure.
Therefore I now demand, and look for no
denial,
That they be brought forthwith to stand upon
their trial.
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE.
Bring in the prisoners! Who aids them in
\their stress?


PORTIA (rising).
I do, your Lordship.
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE.
And are you ready ?
PORTIA. Yes.
[Enter, guarded by police, the Myths all tattered and
torn; with them, the Detective, Policeman, and Elec-
trician.]
CLIO (looking at Afyths in great surprise).
How now how now who are these tatter-
demalions ?
POLICEMAN (bowing).
Why these, so please your Grace,.are just those
same rapscallions.
CLIO.
Well, but why come they here in such a sad
condition ?
DETECTIVE (bowing).
All due, so please your Grace, to your Grace's
Electrician.
ELECTRICIAN (bowing).
I placed a charge of Dynamite,-
You know what that foreboded,-
And with a storage battery
These vagrant Myths exploded.
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE (who meanwhile has been
glancing over the papers containing the
charges against the prisoners).
These papers seem correct. The court will
need
To hear the arguments. Counsel may pro-
ceed.
[The prisoners stand at right securely guarded. The
State's Attorney rises to address the Court.]
THE STATE'S ATTORNEY.
May it please the Court, and likewise you,
Serene and Gracious Madam:
These vagrants have been roaming round-
say, since the days of Adam.
They 're counterfeiters; thieves, who 'd give
us spurious coin for golden;
They 've built their claims for countenance on
certain legends olden;
And, on a base of history that has a grain of
warrant in it,
Have spread corruption through your realm
and told their tales abhorrent in it.
There 's not a boy, there 's not a girl, in all
your History Classes,






COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


But firmly, now, accepts as Fact each Fiction
as it passes.
Because they 've heard of Washington they
must believe the hatchet;
Because they 've heard of William Tell the
apple too must match it.
They still hold on to Whittington and what
the bells were calling,
They find the Pocahontas Myth entrancing
and enthralling.
And Dido and Evangeline, Joan of Arc and
Nero
Have kept their pulses changing oft, from
boiling-point to zero.
Not all the facts of late research, not all the
proofs we 've cited,
SNot all the controversial tests your scholars
have invited;
Not all the light that science brings to bear
on ancient story,
Can break the hold these Myths have gained
on childhood's love of glory.
So, for the State which they have braved; for
you, most gracious Madam,
Whose wise behests they 've oft defied, just
when you thought you had 'em;
For this grave Court; for guileless youth;
and for the truth of History,
I press for justice, quick and sharp, to break
the sway of Mystery.
[He sits down. The Myths appear down-hearted.
Clio looks at them severely and says, enthusiastically,
addressing the State's attorney]:
CLIO.
Well put, my trusty counsellor, best of our
State's defenders.
What now can Portia Pleadwell say to help
these base pretenders ?
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE.
The Court will weigh the State's appeal with
calmest independence,
But waits to hear the counsel's plea who
speaks for these defendants.
PORTIA (rising).
May it please the Court, and also you, O Clio,
Muse most glorious,
Who see these suppliants at your feet, as
here you reign victorious,
I ask for clemency--no more. I stand here
interceding


For these poor outcasts of your realm -here,
now, for mercy pleading.
I ask for these my clients, then, but mercy,-
pure and simple,-
That mercy that adorns your Grace, as does
each dainty dimple.
Who are these Myths, so-called, I ask, but
tutors come to teach us
(However rosy-colored all) true lessons that
should reach us.
How truth may triumph, justice live, and valor
grow more glorious;
How love may weep, and wisdom sleep, and
virtue shine victorious;
How truths excel, and worth will tell, and
good and evil wrangle;
How life's weak thread may snap in dread, or
snarl and twist and tangle;
All this,'t is thought, these myths have taught,
each thus with wisdom shining,
And each may still, set forth with skill, help
to the world's refining.
I rest my case. But first, I beg that I may
be permitted
(Before I ask that by the Court my clients be
acquitted)
To introduce in evidence one fact that has a
bearing
Upon my case -
THE STATE'S ATTORNEY (rises and interrupts).
Oh, I object! I know your
Lordship's sharing,
Alike with me, and with her Grace, the
deepest detestation
For these convicted criminals -
PORTIA (interrupting spiritedly).
Hold! hear my protestation
Against your language -
THE STATE'S ATTORNEY (interrupting).
Why?
PORTIA.
Because these myths
are not convicted!
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE (rappingfor order).
Counsel must cease these hasty words to which
they seem addicted.
PORTIA (to Lord Chief Justice).
Am I sustained ?





COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


LORD CHIEF JUSTICE.
The Court decides that you may now employ
New evidence to prove your case.
PORTIA.
Crier, bring in the Boy!
(Exit CRIER.)
[Enter Crier with the Boy OF MODERN STORY guarded
by two policeman.]

PORTIA (pointing to Boy, as she addresses the
Court).
This bold brigand, may it please the Court,
and you, most noble Clio,
Infests our broad and glorious land from
Eastport to Ohio.
Where'er a school-house lifts its head, wher-
e'er a postman hurries,
This Boy, here put in evidence, comes with
his woes and worries;
Comes with his spurious bravery and his feats
of doubtful daring;
In papers cheap his poisons steep, nor youth
nor maiden sparing.
He reeks with strings of "Injun" scalps; he's
crammed with stolen dollars,
He boasts and prates of youthful crimes, and
counts his hosts of scholars.
The Bandit Boy of Gory Gulch," the Ter-
ror of the Prairie,"
The Avenger of the Midnight Clan," -'t is
thus his titles vary.
The boys he lures with stories wild, the girls
with "raven tresses -
This ghoul of children's literature, this imp
of sordid presses;
Beside this scamp, these harmless Myths stand
out in radiant glory,
Arrayed in Truth's own panoply, enriched
with song and story.
"Look on this picture- and on this! For
childhood's sake, I pray you,
Shall Romance stay, with gentle sway, or Vice
remain to slay you?
(Bows to the Court and sits down.)
CLIO (rising, much/ moved).
Let Romance live! 0 Myths, go free; shine
out in full resplendence!
[The Myths tear off their tattered cloaks, bandages,
etc., and disclose their suits as first worn, in good order
and condition.]
VOL. XVII.-51.


CLIO (to LORD CHIEF JUSTICE, appealingly).
I beg your Lordship's pardon, but -
LORD CHIEF JUSTICE (rising, and with dignity).
I find for the defendants.
(To the MYTHS.)
You are acquitted!
(The Myths shake hands with each other joy-
fully).
CLIO.
Myths, come here!
PORTIA.
Her grace desires to meet you.
CLIO (imperiously, to court officers.)
Remove that boy. Load him with chains!
[The boy is led off by police. Clio descends from her
station and comes toward the Myths with extended
hands.]
With love and hope I greet you!
Once more shine out in radiant robes;
once more roam gay and lightly
Through History's pages--oft too dull--
and make them glow more brightly.
In roughest guise the diamond lies, and
Truth's sublimest teaching
Was told in simple parables, that savored
naught of preaching.
And as each life its romance has, and
every life its sorrow,
So History sage may deck its page with
gems which Truth must borrow.
Let wise men show, as on we go, how tricks
from truths to sever,
But we '11 stay all in Fancy's thrall;
0 Myths, live on forever!
DETECTIVE, POLICEMAN, ELECTRICIAN (coming
forward, insinuatingly).
And -our reward ?
CLIO.
If 't was withheld, 't would surely be a
pity.
What shall it be? I have it! Yes,- The
Freedom of the City,
I ask no thanks. It shall be yours, most
zealous of officials,
Presented in a plush-lined box, and stamped
with my initials.
For by your aid these friends I made -though
not as you intended.
Your batteries, correctly charged, would soon
my Myths have ended.


1890.1






COMEDIES FOR CHILDREN.


[Characters form half-circle. Clio in center. All sing
with spirit this chorus (to tune in Moore's Melodies"):
Sound the loud timbrel o'er Error's dark sea,
For Romance has triumphed and Fiction is free.
Sing, for the pride of the Gradgrinds is broken -
Their facts without sweetness, their dry-as-dust phrase.
How vain was their boast that the lessons we've
spoken,
Should find no defenders and merit no praise.
Sound the loud timbrel, etc.
Sing for great Clio, our patron adored,
Her scroll is our buckler, her pen is our sword;
Now shall we live to tell children our story,
Now shall new hope from our messages spring !
For without us is History shorn of her glory;
We are saved! and the world with our praises shall
ring!
Sound the loud timbrel, etc.


[Clio advances toward audience; extends her hands and
says]:
CLIO.
And now will you, 0 friends most true, who've
watched the whole proceeding,
Give but your sanction to the case as shown
in Portia's pleading ?
Let children know, as children grow, myths,
stories, wholesome fancies -
That, based on Fact, are Romance-packed, and
bright with dreamy glances.
Let children know how friend or foe may tell
of shame or glory,
With watchful eye all error spy, but keep the
MYTHS OF STORY.
All begin again the first stanza of the timbrell" song
of triumph as curtain falls.


(Curtain.)


AN OLD DOLL.

BY MARGARET W. ISLAND.


THIS summer, for the first time in her life,
Hepzibah sat for her photograph. We went to
the studio of a friend of mine, who is a very
clever amateur photographer, and had asked me
to let her sit for a picture. We set her up in a
big arm-chair, told her please to wear a pleasant
expression, and now you see Hepzibah just as she
is, for the photograph is a striking likeness. Of
course you will not think her pretty; but don't
laugh at her faded, wrinkled cheeks, hollow
eyes, and bald head, for Hepzibah is no longer
young. Why, she was seventy years old last
Christmas, and is entitled to respect by reason
of her age if of nothing else; and I think she
would feel sensitive to ridicule, though she is
only a doll.
She became a doll one Christmas in a little
shop in the old town of Portland, Maine. Sev-
enty years ago, dolls with wax heads were ex-
pensive and not nearly so pretty as the ones we
have now. Their bodies were long and stiff,
without joints. Their shoes and clothes were
sewed on, and they had no accomplishments,


such as turning their heads on a spring and say-
ing "Mamma" and "Papa when a machine
was wound up inside. The little girls, in those
days, played mostly with home-made dolls called
rag-babies, and I think perhaps they loved
these cloth children quite as hard and found as
much comfort in them as the little girls nowa-
days find in the wonderful toys brought from
Europe.
The same Christmas that Hepzibah was made
into a doll, a little girl called Polly, who also
lived in Portland, told her mother she wanted
Santa Claus (she was only five years old then,
and believed in Santa Claus) to bring her a
doll; not a rag baby,- she had three of those,-
but a beautiful wax one with real yellow hair,
blue eyes, and a dress just like the one Polly
herself wore. The mother smiled a bit at this
request, but promised to speak to Santa Claus
about it, and then went the next day and bought
the handsomest doll in the city. It cost more
than any of the others, for, by pushing and pull-
ing a wire on the left side of the body, its eyes


[MAR.


426






AN OLD DOLL.


would close and open, a rare talent for a doll then.
She was taken to a dressmaker, and Polly's
mother ordered the woman to make the gown
on the most fashionable pattern and not to
spare expense. So the dressmaker did it. She
sewed the clothes by hand, and cut the petticoat
from a piece of fine homespun linen. She made
little red silk shoes and laced them up with red
thread; whipped thread lace on the edge of
the queer-looking pantalettes, and stitched two
rows of red wool braid on the full brown linen
skirt. A bit of brightly colored ribbon held by
a small silver buckle clasped the neat waist,
tiny feather pillows tucked under the leg-o'-
mutton sleeves made them puff out in a most
stylish manner, and, as a last touch of elegance,
a narrow pink ribbon was run through the yel-
low curls and tied in a bow on top of the head.
So she looked the Christmas morning Polly
found her, in the top of a long stocking; the
loveliest doll in Portland, with such rosy cheeks,
red lips, and smiling blue eyes that Polly took
her at once to her tender, motherly little heart
and named her Hepzibah.
After Hepzibah came, the rag babies, "Sarah,"
"Jane," and Nancy," were entirely neglected,
and very soon found their way to the garret, for
Hepzibah had taken their place in their little
mother's affections. Polly never went to bed at
night that her beloved dolly was not also tucked
snugly into her cradle and sung gently to sleep.
The two always went a-visiting together, to doll
tea-parties, picnics, and the like. Here Hepzi-
bah was admired by the other small mothers,
and Polly always said, with an affectionate kiss,
that hers was "the most perfect child in the
world! In the summer they went blackberry-
ing, for rides on the hay, and to play mud-cakes
by the brook; until at last Polly grew to be a
big girl, and then to a young lady with her
skirts to the floor, and her yellow curls pinned
on top of her pretty head. She was too old to
play dolls any more; but she did not forget
poor Hepzibah, who began to feel very lonely.
Finally, one day Polly said she was to be mar-
ried; and Hepzibah went to the wedding, and
saw the ceremony, if she did not hear it; for
Polly insisted on having her brought to the
parlor and put conspicuously on the mantel.
After that Hepzibah never saw nor heard any-


thing for a great many years, for she was put
into a trunk and went traveling, she never knew
where, till, at last, the trunk was stored in a
garret and was not opened for such a long time
that she went to sleep, like the princess in the
fairy tale, and did n't wake up for twenty years.

When I was a little girl I went to live at
my grandfather's place, in the State of Missis-


HEPZIBAH.


sippi. It was a very old-fashioned house in
a very old-fashioned neighborhood, and among
the neighbors were two widow ladies. They
lived all alone in an old plantation-house, with
only a big dog for companion, and sometimes I
went with my mother to see them and spend
the day. I usually took my rag-doll Matilda"
with me, for although she was an ugly person,







AN OLD DOLL.


having cloth hair and a face marked out in ink,
I was fond of her, and we had very good times
together. One day when I was at this house I
sat on the front steps, playing "flower ladies,"
and the oldest of the sisters, whose name was
Mrs. Powers, called me to go up to the garret
with her. Now, I had always wished to see
what was in that garret, so Matilda and I, full
of curiosity, followed Mrs. Powers up the narrow
steps. We opened a little window to let in some
light, and saw two big spinning-wheels that
had come all the way from Portland many
years before; and in one corner were some queer
leather trunks that had not been opened for
years. Mrs. Powers unlocked one, took out
some funny muslin gowns, all yellow with age,
and, finally, a box which she said was for me.
When I opened it, what do you suppose I
found ? Why, Hepzibah, of course! Just as you
see her here. The belt and buckle at her waist
had been lost long ago, her poor pretty eyes had
fallen back in her head, the beautiful hair had
nearly all fallen off, and the color was gone from
her cheeks, except two little spots of pink that
made her wrinkled face look like a dried little
winter apple. When I took her in my arms
Mrs. Powers cried a bit, and as we'sat on the
trunk she told me of the time when she was
little Polly and lived with her dear Hepzibah in
Portland, how happy she was then, and how she
had known Miss Sophie May, who wrote the
Prudy and Dotty books, and even Prudy and
" Dotty themselves, till it grew quite dark and
time for me to go home.
I took Hepzibah with me, but she had grown
too old to play and could only lie patiently in a
box, and was sometimes shown to visitors. By
and by, I grew up, too, and went away from the
old place, carrying Hepzibah with me to the city
of New Orleans, and last summer she went to a
fancy-dress ball given to a number of little chil-
dren. Prizes had been offered the girls for the
largest doll, the smallest doll, the oldest doll, and
the ugliest doll. There are no small children in
our family, but our next-door neighbor has a
charming little daughter who was going to the
ball dressed as a fisher-girl. Little Edna's
mother asked me to lend Hepzibah to try for the
prize for the oldest doll. So I took her from the
box where she had lain so long, shook out her


faded skirts, gave her a little advice about com-
pany manners, and a kiss, and sent her off in the
arms of the fisher-girl to dance on the lawn to
the sweet music of a hand-organ.
There were hundreds of dolls present, from the
great Paris bisque baby who was wound up with
a key and wore a silk gown and lace cap, to the
tiny china doll with gilt shoes and queer blue
eyes. There were big wax dolls with lots of
curly hair, wearing baby-clothes, black dolls with
woolly heads, and a few boy dolls. They drank
lemonade and ate bonbons,- at least their jolly
little mothers did for them, as sweets don't agree
with such young children, you know,-and when
the party was nearly over, the dolls went bash-
fully up for exhibition before several gentlemen,
the chosen judges. Poor Hepzibah, I dare say,
wished she had stayed at home in her box. It
was so long since she had been into society, and
dolls of to-day have very different manners from
the dolls she had known. She felt that her gown
was so faded and unfashionable, and every one
laughed at the leg-o'-mutton sleeves and her
empty eyes, and she almost trembled when one
kindly faced judge picked her up. He exam-
ined the little ticket pinned to the hem of her
shabby skirt, and read,
Hepzibah,
Seventy years old,
Born in Portland, Maine."
Poor old dolly," he murmured, and handled
her with respectful fingers, honoring her years
and lack of hair.
She didn't take the prize; a wooden Egyptian
doll got it, but the judge held Hepzibah up
before the crowd of children and made a little
speech, saying that she was the oldest American
doll, and told some of her history, and when she
came back to me she was greatly excited, but
happy to find herself once more in her box. If
she could speak, I think she would say she was
glad she lost the prize, for not even a doll likes
to be older and uglier than every one else.
Last year she took another long journey. I
put her box in my trunk, and we two came by
steamer all the way from New Orleans to New
York. And now she hopes that her journeys are
over, for she is too old to travel and wishes to
retire into quiet and peace for the rest of her
days.


428



































MINUTES WITH A CYCLONE.
(A True Story.*)

BY M. LOUISE FORD.


SPEAKING of cyclones," remarked Mr. Wil-
son to the company about the library-fire, one
cold November evening, I think I can equal
any story you have told with my own experi-
ence in a genuine twister.' "
As we had already heard some surprising sto-
ries, a general exclamation from young and old
demanded the story, and, after a little urging,
Mr. Wilson began:
"We were living then, my wife and the eight
children (of whom the youngest was but four
months old), in Malcom, a pretty little village
about five miles from the city of Grinnell, Iowa.
"The farm was as attractive as it could well
be -acre after acre of rolling prairie land, a
fine garden, and a young and thriving orchard.
My cousin had lived on the place for several
years, but when his business made it necessary
for him to go farther West, he had persuaded me


to come out and take the farm. I had hoped to
go West for several years, and I thought this an
excellent opportunity, so we moved out, and
had been living there about four years when
this big blow came.
"It was in 1882, on the 27th of June; you
will see why I have no trouble in remembering
the date.
"It had been an exceedingly hot day, not a
Cloud to be seen, with the sun beating fiercely
down, and not a breath of air stirring. We sat
out on the porch after supper, trying to find a cool
place. The clouds were beginning to gather,
and it looked as if there might be a shower. The
three little ones went early to bed, and in spite
of the oppressive heat were soon fast asleep.
It could n't have been far from eight o'clock
when I heard a sound which I at first thought
was thunder. The others noticed it, too, and,


* See author's letter, p. 452.


FIFTEEN





FIFTEEN MINUTES WITH A CYCLONE.


as it grew louder, a terrible rushing sound came
with it, and we looked at one another in silence
for a minute, and then ran to where we could
look out westward.
My heart almost stopped beating, when I
saw coming toward us with terrific speed a
black, funnel-shaped cloud, the rush and roar
accompanying it growing louder every minute.
"' Run for the cellar!' I cried. My wife ran
and seized the baby, and I caught up the two


other children from the bed. There was no
time to lose.
The one who first reached the cellar door-
it was one of the older children-had just time
to seize the knob, nothing more, when-crash!
such a terrific noise I felt myself lifted in the
air and thought my time had come. The next
thing I knew, I felt the splash of cold water in
my face. I must have lost consciousness, but
the water revived me, and in a moment I knew
where I was.
Ilad come down head first into the well!
"The water was some ten feet deep. I was
thoroughly at home in the water, though I was n't
used to diving in that fashion, and I managed
to right myself and come up head first.
The well was not more than three feet across,
and the pump had been broken short off and
carried away, leaving a two-inch iron pipe stand-
ing straight up in the middle.
I was very nearly out of breath when I came
to the top of the water. My hands touched
something floating on the surface. I thought it


was the cat; imagine my surprise when I found
it was Charlie, our five-year-old boy !
He was terribly frightened, and as amazed
as I was, to find himself not alone in the well.
The wonder was that we were not both of us
impaled on that iron pipe; how we escaped it
I can not understand.
The cyclone had passed on, and a terrific,
steady wind was blowing. I could hear it roar
above our heads; and by the flashes of light-
ning I could see that rain fell in
torrents. We were both so wet
we did n't mind the little extra
water that splashed down on us,
and as soon as possible I raised
Charlie to my shoulders, and by
aid of the pipe managed to work
my way up to the top of the well.
This took some little time, and
.- the wind and rain had nearly
ceased when I set my feet on
solid earth again, and found we
were unhurt.
But such a scene as I looked
upon I hope never to see again !
And I dreaded to look about
me for fear of worse things. Evi-
dently the house had been lifted bodily from its
foundations and dashed down, and everything
that had not been carried away by the wind lay
about the yard; many of the great timbers were
found rods away driven into the earth, as if they
had been but tent-pegs.
Soon I heard my wife's voice calling, and I
was a happy man when I found her and two of
our little ones, terribly wet and frightened, but
unhurt.
But where was the baby ?
-" I called the names of the other children, as
we ran frantically here and there to find some
trace of them. Nellie, the eldest, came running
from the orchard with the baby in her arms.
She said she had picked him up from the wet
ground where he was lying, and he had not even
cried. She had found herself there, but that was
all she knew about it; indeed, none of us could
give an account of our wanderings after we left
the cellar door.
"Soon we heard the boys' voices, and found
that they were in the cellar; the cyclone in lift-


[MAR.


430





FIFTEEN MINUTES WITH A CYCLONE.


ing the body of the house had taken up a
part of the foundation (which was of large stones
laid in cement), and then dropped it. The floor
came down a little askew, and a stove, organ,
and a heavy desk had slidden off into the
cellar.
In some way or other the boys reached the
cellar, too, probably before the floor fell, for the
flooring made a protection over their heads.
They came out safe and sound, though it was
difficult to set them free.
It seems that my wife had found herself on
the ground, and by the flashes of lightning had
seen Charlie standing not far from her. As the
wind was blowing a gale, she called to him to
lie down flat on the ground; but the next time
the lightning came she could not see him, and
supposed the wind must have swept him off
his feet into the well. Providentially, I was
there to rescue him.
"Well, we found ourselves all safe and un-
hurt,-except a few slight bruises not worth
mentioning, after what we had been through,-
and you can understand that we were not only
a very happy family but that we were a very
thankful family, too.
Our home was scattered along on the prairie
for a mile or more; there was n't enough left of
it to make a large hen-house. The barn was
gone, also; but, to our surprise, there stood
the thirty head of cattle tied to the stanchions


(only one of them so injured that it had to be
killed), and my two horses were unharmed.
The big wagon was in the yard, and had in
some way escaped destruction, so we hitched
up the horses and started to find shelter.
Our clothing was rather the worse for wear,
but we did not stop to think about trifles. We
could see the terrible work of the cyclone as we
rode along; trees twisted off or torn up by the
roots, and buildings demolished. The rain had
come down in such torrents that next day the
trees and fences looked as if there had been a
high tide, the leaves and straw which clung to
them a foot or more above the ground showing
at what height the water had stood.
"You remember how much damage the
cyclone did in Grinnell, and if you could have
seen the sight we looked upon as we rode into
the city, you would realize as never before what
an appalling thing a cyclone is.
We were well taken careof, and after a while
I even ventured to build again; but my garden
was gone, my orchard was ruined, and there
was constant dread whenever there was a cloud
in the sky, and at length my wife and I con-
cluded we could n't bear to stay any longer. We
came East again, and here we mean to remain.
"Such having been our experience, no one
can blame us for not wishing to repeat it. Cer-
tainly we could not hope to be as fortunate
another time."











THE SCREECH-OWL.

By ERNEST E. THOMPSON.


OFTEN in the evening, an hour or so after
sunset, the outdoor naturalist may hear from
the shade of a thick hemlock, or from a grove
in some ravine, a prolonged, quavering note
something like this:
D.C.

T~ow wow- vow-wow.
Though tinged with melancholy, it is soft and
musical, and it is indeed, as Lowell says, one of
the sweetest sounds in nature. And yet, this is
the characteristic note of the bird which has
gained, for reasons unknown to me, the unpleas-
ant name of screech-owl."
This pretty little owl, perhaps the prettiest of
the family, is but slightly longer than a robin,
but looks much larger on account of the fluffy
feathers and large head. It is found in temper-
ate North America and is quite common in most


: f


4 47.,



of the Eastern States. Generally it lives in the
woods, but it is fond also of frequenting barns,
old orchards, and groves near the water.
It is very courageous and can kill other birds
as large as itself; but usually it preys on mice
and grasshoppers. Its mousing abilities are so
wonderful that it has been
aptly named the feathered
cat "; and its great yellow
eyes, ear-like tufts, and
night-prowling habits all
unite to make the name
suitable.
Many persons are so
fond of this little owl that
they take pains to encour-
age it about their houses.
The readiest way is to place
in the trees, at different parts
of the farm, nesting-boxes
,like small pigeon-houses.
-/ One might be put in the
; orchard, another in the
_'-- woods near the water, if
there is any, and another
';j in the gable of the barn.
Unless there is some un-
usual cause to keep away
these musical mousers, not





THE SCREECH-OWL.


very many seasons will pass before they avail
themselves of the comfortable quarters provided.
The soft call already described is really the
love-note of this owl. It is its song just as much
as the prolonged chantings of any of our com-
mon birds are their songs; and it will be heard
oftenest in the early spring, although it is not
unusual for this owl to sing nearly the whole
year round.


Here, then, we have in this little owl an
example of bravery, industry, and cheerfulness;
and these qualities are shown by the very bird
of all others that is least credited with them;
for, if names and reputations are to count for
anything, surely the very last bird to which
we would look for an example of courage and
merriment would be an owl, and above all, a
screech-owl.


NORAY AND THE ARK.


By HARRY STILLWELL EDWARDS.


SNCLE DICKsatout
in the pine thicket
near his cabin, busy
with his basket-
making, for the
cotton was in the
boll, and something
to put the soft,
white lint in must
be ready when the
hands picked it. Within thirty days each picker
would be traveling along a row in the field filling
the bag hung about his neck, and if the baskets
were not on hand to empty in, there would be
trouble. The old man had had his strips in
soak all night to soften them and render them
pliable, and as he worked away, lacing them
together firmly, he sang an old plantation hymn
that started the echoes far and near. The sun
outside was hot upon the fields, but about him
was a dense shade, and a little breeze had crept in
to keep him cool and set the pines murmuring.
He was a nervous little old man, with a face
full of smiles. Somehow he seemed always to
think that things were getting on fairly well
about him, and that life was not made for
regrets and discontent. And so, come what
might, the children were always reasonably sure
of finding Uncle Dick in a good humor and
accommodating, however much he protested
against interference.
VOL. XVII.-52.


This morning he suddenly paused in his labors
and lifted his head. A knowing look shone in
his face:
Deir hit is ergin, deir hit is ergin; dem chil-
lun gwine ter mek more trouble !" His sharp
ears had not deceived him, for presently there
burst in upon him a noisy bevy of youngsters
who had come down from the "big house" to
gather wild flowers and pay Dick a visit. It
was trouble," sure enough; one wanted a strip
for a jumping-hoop, one for a bow, another
stuff for a popgun stick; and so on.
"Ain' no use talking, said the old man, push-
ing the youngsters right and left, and gathering
up his possessions as rapidly as possible. "'F I
gi' yer dat timber, dese hyah baskets ain' gwine
ter git done;-don't tek dat, Marse Tom; don't
yer do hit; -'bliged ter have dat ve'y strip!-
Miss Ma'y, don't, honey; dat piece b'long right
hyah twixtt dese two what I 'm er-holdin' open.
Git erway fum hyah de las' one er yer! Don't,-
I 'm gwine straight up yonner to de big house
an' tell ole Miss!"
"Tell us about Noray, then, Uncle Dick."
The demand was at once re-enforced by a chorus
of voices.
Now, des lissen at dat! How many times I
done tell yer already? How 'm I gwine ter
work, ef I fool erlong wid er whole passell er
chillun at de same time!"
But, Uncle Dick, we're not going to bother





NORAY AND THE ARK.


you; we will all sit down here on the ground,
and you can work and talk, too, just as you
always do."
The air was full of Please, Uncle Dick,"
uttered in pleading tones, and Dick, apparently
restored to good-nature again, was shaking all
over.
"What I winter tell yer 'bout ?"
Noray! Noray! Noray!"
"Cousin Nellie has never heard it," volun-
teered a little boy.
"Whar she ? Dick stopped short, despite
the alleged pressing nature of his work, and
looked quickly around. The youngster pushed
a little girl to the front.
"Here she is! Nellie Wimberley, why did n't
you say howdy' to Uncle Dick ? "
The old man appeared to be deeply interested.
"Hush!" he said. "Dis ain' Marse Tom
Wimb'ley's gal ?"
"Yes, she is." It was a chorus again. Dick
drew her up to him.
Lor' bless my soul! But deir hit is, deir hit
is! Same eye, same nose, same mouf! It 's
de troof! Yo' pa an' me was mighty close,
honey, mighty close!- Course, I gwine ter tell
yer erbout Noray," he said impatiently, turning
in response to the renewed call; gwine ter tell
hit des like I used ter tell 'er pa, 'fo' y' all was
born'd. Y' all drop right down deir on the pine
straw; I 'm gwine ter set Miss Nellie right up
hyah top er dis new basket, des like 'er pa used
ter set, an' I bet she ain't gwine ter say nothing'
fum de time I start tell I git done. Dem Wim-
b'leys es quality, and quality es born wid man-
ners." His broad hint to the assembly was not
without its effect; but the effect was fleeting.
Nellie, with her hand full of wild violets, sat
very still, and kept her eyes upon the old man.
His face grew soft and full of smiles again.
Some folks," he said, picking up his strips
again, "tells dis story one way, an' some tell
hit eruther. I 'm gwine ter tell hit des like it
come ter me straight fum de nigger dat was
deir-"
One of the boys laughed.
"Whar yo' manners, chile ? Ef deir want
no nigger deir, how come niggers heah? Nig-
ger was deir, an' es name was Ham. I heah
tell es how es wife named M'randy, but I dunno


'bout dat. Dey was both pow'ful skeered fum
de time dey got out er sight er lan' till lan' come
ergin; ev'ybody know dat, cause niggers was
only 'tended ter move 'bout on de water in er
bateau, an' keep in close ter de willers."
Presently he began, in a peculiar sing-song in-
tonation:
Noray buil' de ark, an' he bull' 'er strong,
he buil' 'er wide, an' he buil' 'er long, an' he put
'er roof on top. Atter he got de work all done,
a voice say, Let er rain come'; an' er rain hit
come. Glory ter de Man! An' hit rain, an'
hit rain, an' hit rain! 'T want no little' ha'f-way
rain, but er good ole po'-down rain; yes, little'
chillun! Yes! Hit rain forty days and hit
rain forty nights! De creeks all riz, an' de ribbers
riz, an' de low groun's soon got wet. Den de
field's went out er sight, an' de hills 'gin ter shake,
an' folks cry out fer he'p; but no he'p come.
Glory ter de Man !
Bimeby de lan' all gone, but Noray fix fer
dat. He had er pair er evvy kin' o' all de
animals an' de reptiles too, an' er ev'yt'ing dat
wear fedders. But de fish outside tek kyar dey-
selves. An' de ark ride on de waters den, fer
he buil' 'er high, an' he buil 'er strong, an' he buil'
'er wide, an' he buil' 'er long, wid room inside fer
all, an' plenty, too, ter eat. Bimeby long cum er
dry spell, an' ole Noray he op'n de window an'
put es head outside. Nuthin' deir 'cept pu'
water far as he could see. Den Noray tek ole
Buzzard an' say ter him-"
Grandma says it was a raven; I went and
asked her."
Dick looked hard at the bold interrupter.
"Yo' gran'ma es er mighty good 'ooman,
honey, but I 'm er-telling de story straight.
Mebby raven nuther name fer buzzard. He
tek him an' he say: 'G' 'long out er hyah an'
fine dat lan'.' An' buzzard flop 'es wing an' fly
erway, roun' an' roun', tell bimeby he plumb
gone. Den Noray go back en de sittin'-room
an' tell es wife:

Keep er-knittin', honey,
Brer Buzzard gone.
Keep er-knittin', honey,
An' de lan' come erlong.

"But buzzard gone for good an' er-flyin' yit,
'cep'n' when he fine sumpin dead. Ef yer go


434


[MAR.






NORAY AND THE ARK.


out deir an' look up en de sky, spec' yer see
'im still er-searchin' wid 'es eye fer de lan'."
But Uncle Dick, I 've seen him sitting on a
dead pine."
The old man smiled and shook his head.
He was prepared.
No, yer ain't, honey. Hit 'll fool mos' any-
body; but dat ole Missis Buzzard. An' ef yer
look mighty close, yer gwine ter see sumpin
dead close by. She know dat de ole man be
'long atter while, an' she gwine ter wait deir fer
'im. An' ain' nobody gwine ter tech dat dead
till he come, nuther.--Whar'bouts dat story
broke ? "
"The buzzard was gone." Several voices sup-
plied the information.
Atter while Noray git tired er waiting' an' he
tek Sist' Dove ter de winder an' he ses: Sist'
Dove, g' long out er hyah an' fine dat lan'.' An'
Sist' Dove flop er wing an' sh' fly, an' sh' fly, but
no lan'. An' bimeby she come and circle 'round
de ark t'ree time, an' dey hyah 'er sing: Coo !


"'Bout dis time de word went 'roun', an' de
big dog down en de cellar say, 'Boo! woo! woo!'
an' de little dog upstairs say, 'Bow! wow! wow!'
an' de cow she low, an' de sheep she bleet, an'
de ole goat fairly scream fer joy, Baa-a-a-ah!
An' de birds 'gin ter sing: but no lan' yit, an' de
rooster 'fuse ter crow."
As old Uncle Dick imitated the various ani-
mals, Nellie laughed until she almost fell from
the basket.
Den 'long come sumpin floatin' by away out
yonder, an' bimeby Noray see hit was de buz-
zard ridin' on er dead mule all by 'essef, an' he
holler out:
"'Whar dat lan'? Oh whar dat lan-n-n'?'
But Buzzard can't talk, an' Jim Crow, his fust-
cousin, up an' say, Dat's all de lan' he want.
Dat's why he ain' come back ter de Ark-Ark-
Ark !'
But long erbout light nex' day, Noray was
er-combin' es hair' 'fo' de glass, when he stag-
gered, an' all de bottles cum er-tumblin' down


No ray ay ay,...


No ray ay,


No lan' kin be found .


Coo! Coo! Noray-ay-ay-ay, ay-ay-ay-Noray-
ay-ay-ay. No lan' kin be foun'.' An' Noray
put de meal back en de saucer, an' hit de winder-
sill wid es fist, an' ses en er loud voice, ses he,
' Sist' Dove, I 's wantin' yer ter g'long erway
fum hyah 'bout yo' business an' fine dat glitterin'
lan'; an' don't yer come back hyah. no mo' tell
yer fine hit, sho' An' ole Sist' Dove sh' g'long
ergin, an' sh' fly, an' sh' fly, an' sh' fly, she do.
Sh' fly t'ree days an' sh' fly t'ree nights, an' one
morning' she come back, sh' did, an' light right en
de winder an' er green leaf was en 'er mouf. An'
sh' sing out: Coo Coo! Coo Noray-ay-ay-
ay-ay-ay, Noray-ay-ay I 'se foun' de lan'!
I 'se foun' de lan'!' Den Noray spill little
meal deir fer 'er, an' he say, 'Glory ter de Man !'


fum de she'f. An' des den he hyah de rooster
way out on top de pilot-house sing out: Ook-
kook-kook-kook-koo Noray.-ay-ay-ay-ay-
ay, Noray-ay-ay, ole Ark done run ergroun'.'
An' Noray drop 'es brush an' say,' Dah!!! Glory
ter de Man!'
Dat as far as my story goes," said Dick when
the children were done laughing, and he was fit-
ting another strip in his basket. "But I once
hear er ole man named Black Bill, what used ter
live ov'r ter de Bell place, tell hit a little diffunt.
He ses dat when Noray run out er de room, de
fus' t'ing he seed was dat boy Ham grab both
de chickens and break fer de woods; and Black
Bill up an' say dat fum dat day ter dis, niggers
own all de chickens en de lan'. "


~ I~l1=i~R 1 I II


435










CROWDED OUT O' CROFIELD.

By WILLIAM O. STODDARD.


CHAPTER IV.

MR. MURDOCH had stood on the main street
corer, taking notes for the Eagle, but now he
came back to say the fire was out and it was
nearly time for Sunday-school.
It seemed strange to have Sunday-school just
after a fire, but the Ogden family and its visitors
at once made ready.
It was a quarterly meeting, with general exer-
cises and singing, and a review of the quarter's
lessons. The church was full by the hour for
opening, and the school had a very prosper-
ous look. Elder Holloway and Mr. Murdoch
and two other important men sat in the pulpit,
and Joab Spokes, the superintendent, stood in
front of them to conduct the exercises. The
elder seemed to be glancing benevolently
around the room, through his spectacles, but
there were some things there which could be
seen without glasses, and he must have seen
those also.
Miss Glidden looked particularly well and
very stately, as she sat in the pew in front of
her class (if it were hers), with Mary Ogden.
Her first words, on coming in to take com-
mand, had been!
Mary dear, don't go. I really wish you to
stay. You may be of assistance."
Mary flushed a little, but she said nothing in
reply. She remained, and she certainly did assist,
for the girls looked at her almost all the while,
and Miss Glidden had no trouble whatever, and
nothing to do but to look pleased and beam-
ing and dignified. The elder, it was noticed,
seemed to feel special interest in the part taken
in the exercises by the class with two teachers,
one for show and one for work. He even
seemed to see something comical in the situa-
tion, and there was positive admiration in a
remark he made to Mr. Murdoch:
"She 's a true teacher. There 's really only


one teacher to that class. She must have been
born with a knack for it!"
Elder Holloway, with all his years and experi-
ence, had not understood the case of Miss Glid-
den's class more perfectly than had one young
observer at the other end of the church. Jack
Ogden could not see so well as those great men
in the pulpit, but then he could hear much and
surmise the rest.
All those girls will stand by Molly! he said
to himself. "I hope it won't be long before
school 's dismissed," he added.
He had reasons for this hope. He was a little
late through lingering to take a curious look at
what was left of the fire. The street had a lit-
tered look. The barns and stables were wide
open, and deserted, for the horses had been led
to places of safety. There seemed to be an im-
pression that the hotel was half destroyed; but
the damage had not been very great.
A faint, thin film of blue was eddying along
the ridge-pole of the kitchen addition. Jack no-
ticed it, but did not know what it meant. A
more practiced observer would have known that,
hidden from sight, buried in the punk of the
dry-rotted timber, was a vicious spark of fire,
stealthily eating its way through the punk to the
resinous pine.
Jack paid little attention to the tiny smoke-
wreath, but he was compelled to pay some at-
tention to the weather. It had been hot from
sunrise until noon, and the air had grown
heavier since.
"I know what that haze means," said Jack
to himself, as he looked toward the Cocahutchie.
"There 's a thunder-storm coming by and by,
and nobody knows just when. I '11 be on the
look out for it."
For this reason he was glad that he was com-
pelled to find a seat not far from the door of
the church. Twice he went out to look at the
sky, and the second time he saw banks of





CROWDED OUT

lead-colored clouds forming on the northwestern
horizon. Returning he said to several of the
boys near the vestibule:
"You 've just time to get home, if you don't
want a ducking."
Each boy passed along the warning; and
when the school stood up to sing the last hymn,
even the girls and the older people knew of the
coming storm. There was a brief silence before
the first note of the organ, and through that
silence nearly everybody could catch the shrill
squeak in which little Joe Hawkins tried to
speak very low and secretly.
"Deakin Cobb, we want to 'git aout!
We 've just time to git home if we don't want
a duckin'."
The hymn started raggedly and in a wrong
pitch; and just then the great room grew sud-
denly darker, and there was a low rumble of
thunder.
Mary Ogden! exclaimed Miss Glidden,
"what are you doing ? They can't go yet!"
Mary was singing as loudly and correctly as
usual, but she was out in the aisle, and the girls
of that class were promptly obeying the motion
of hand and head with which she summoned
them to walk out of the church.
Elder Holloway may have been only keeping
time when he nodded his head, but he was
looking at Miss Glidden's class.
So was Miss Glidden, in a bewildered way, as
if she, like little Bo-peep, were losing her sheep.
Mary was following a strong and sudden im-
pulse. Nevertheless, by the time that class was
out of its pews the next caught the idea, and
believed it a prudent thing to do. They followed
in good order, singing as they went.
"The girls out first,- then the boys," said
Elder Holloway, between two stanzas. "One
class at a time. No hurry."
Darker grew the air. Jack, out in front of
the church, was watching the blackest cloud he
had ever seen, as it came sweeping across the
sky.
The people walked out calmly enough, but
all stopped singing at the door and ran their
best.
Run, Molly! Run for home !" shouted
Jack, seeing Mary coming. It's going to be
an awful storm."


0' CROFIELD. 437

Inside the church there was much hesitation,
for a moment; but Miss Glidden followed her
class without delay, and all the rest followed
as fast as they could, and were out in half the
usual time. Joe Hawkins heard Jack's words
to Molly.
Run, boys," he echoed. Cut for home!
There 's a fearful storm coming! "
He was right. Great drops were already fall-
ing now and then, and there was promise of a
torrent to follow.
"I don't want to spoil these clothes," said
Jack, uneasily. "I need these to wear in the
city. The storm is n't here yet, though. I '11
wait a minute." He was holding his hat on
and looking up at the steeple when he said
that. It was a very old, wooden steeple, tall,
slender, and somewhat rheumatic, and he knew
there must be more wind up so high than there
was nearer the ground. "It 's swinging! he
said suddenly. "I can see it bend Glad they 're
all getting out. There come Elder Holloway
and Mr. Murdoch. See the elder run! I hope
he won't try to get to Hawkins's. He'd better
run for our house."
That was precisely the counsel given the good
man by the editor, and the elder said:
"I 'd like to go there. I 'd like to see that
clever girl again. Come, Murdoch; no time
to lose!"
The blast was now coming lower, and the
gloom was deepening.
Flash-rattle-boom-crash! came a glit-
ter of lightning and a great peal of thunder.
Here it is!" cried Jack. If it is n't a dry
blast!"
It was something like the first hot breath of
a hurricane. To and fro swung the tottering
old steeple for a moment, and then there was
another crash-a loud, grinding, splintering,
roaring crash-as the spire reeled heavily
down, lengthwise, through the shattered roof
of themeeting-house! Except for Mary Ogden's
cleverness, the ruins might have fallen upon the
crowded Sunday-school. Jack turned and ran
for home. He was a good runner, but he only
just escaped the deluge following that thunder-
bolt.
Jack turned upon reaching the house, and as
he looked back he uttered a loud exclamation,





CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


and out from the house rushed all the people
who were gathered there.
"Jingo !" Jack shouted. "The old hotel's
gone, sure, this time !"
The burrowing spark had smoldered slowly
along, until it felt the first fanning of the rising
gale. In another minute it flared as if.under a
blowpipe, and soon a fierce sheet of flame
came bursting through the roof.
Down poured the rain; but the hottest of that
blaze was roofed over, and the fire had its own
way with the empty addition.
"We could n't help if we should try," ex-
claimed Mr. Ogden.
I'11 put on my old clothes, anyway," said
Jack. "Nobody knows what's coming."
"I will, too," said his father..
Jack paused a moment, and said, from the
foot of the stairs:
"The steeple's down,-right through the
meeting-house. It has smashed the whole
church!"
The sight of the fire had made him withhold
that news for a minute; but now, for another
minute, the fire was almost forgotten.
Elder Holloway began to say something in
praise of Mary Ogden about her leading out the
class, but she darted away.
Let me get by, Jack," she said. "Let me
pass, please. They all would have been killed
if they had waited! But I was thinking only
of my class and the rain."
She ran upstairs and Jack followed. Then
the elder made a number of improving remarks
about discipline and presence of mind, and the
natural fitness of some people for doing the right
thing in an emergency. He might have said
more, but all were drawn to the windows to
watch the strife between the fire and the rain.
The fierce wind drove the smoke through the
building, compelling the landlord and his wife
to escape as best they could, and, for the time
being, the victory seemed to be with the fire.
"Seems to me," said the blacksmith somberly,
" as if Crofield was going to pieces. This is the
worst storm we ever had. The meeting-house
is gone, and the hotel 's going "
Mary, at her window, was looking out in
silence, but her face was bright rather than
gloomy. Even if she was "only a girl," she


had-found an opportunity for once, and she had
not proved unequal to it.

CHAPTER V.

JACK needed only a few minutes to put on the
suit he had worn when fishing.
There, now! he said; if there 's going to
be a big flood in the creek I 'm going down to
see it, rain or no rain. There 's no telling how
high it '11 rise if this pour keeps on long enough.
It rattles on the roof like- buck-shot "
That's the end of the old tavern," said Jack
to Mary, as he stood in the front room looking
out.
He was barefooted, and had come so silently
that she was startled.
"Jack!" she exclaimed, turning around,
they might have all been killed when the
steeple came down. I heard what Joe Hawkins
said, and I led out the class."
"Good for Joe! "said Jack. "We need a new
meeting-house, anyway. I heard the elder say
so. Less steeple, next time, and more church!"
"I 'd like to see a real big church," said
Mary,-" a city church."
"You 'd like to go to the city as much as I
would," said Jack.
"Yes, I would," she replied emphatically.
Just you get there and I '11 come afterward, if
I can. I 've been studying twice as hard since
I left the academy, but I don't know why."
I know it," said Jack; "but I 've had no
time for books."
"Jack! Molly!" the voice of Aunt Melinda
came up the stairway. "Are you ever coming
downstairs ? "
What will the elder say to my coming down
barefoot ? said Jack; "but I don't want shoes
ifI 'm going out into the mud."
"He won't care at such a time as this," said
Mary. "Let 's go."
It was not yet supper-time, but it was almost
dark enough to light the lamps. Jack felt bet-
ter satisfied about his appearance when he found
how dark and shadowy the parlor was; and he
felt still better when he saw his father dressed
as if he were going over to work at the forge,
all but the leather apron.
The elder did not seem disturbed. He and


438


[MAR.





CROWDED OUT O' CROFIELD.


Mr. Murdoch were talking about all sorts of
great disasters, and Mary did not know just
when she was drawn into the talk, or how she
came to acknowledge having read about so
many different things all over the world.
"Jack," whispered his mother, at last, "you '11
have to go to the barn and gather eggs, or we
shan't have enough for supper."
I '11 bring the eggs if I don't get drowned
before I get back," said Jack; and he found a
basket and an umbrella and set out.
He took advantage of a little lull in the rain,
and ran to the barn-yard gate.
Hullo!" he exclaimed. "Now I '11 have
to wade. Why it 's nearly a foot deep There 'll
be the biggest kind of a freshet in the Cocahut-
chie. Isn't this jolly!"
The rain pattered on the roof as if it had been
the head of a drum. If the house was gloomy,
the old barn was darker and gloomier. Jack
turned over a half-bushel, measure and sat down
on it.
"I want to think," he said. I want to get
out of this. Seems to me I never felt it so before.
I 'd as lief live in this barn as stay in Crofield."
He suddenly sprang up and shook off his blues,
exclaiming:
I '11 go and see the freshet, anyhow !"
He carried the eggs into the house.
All the time he had been gone, Elder Hollo-
way had been asking Mary very particularly
about the Crofield Academy.
"I don't wonder she says what she does about
the trustees," remarked Aunt Melinda. She
took the primary room twice, for 'most a month
each time, when the teacher was sick, and all
the thanks she had was that they did n't like it
when they found it out."
The gutter in front of the house had now be-
come a small torrent.
All the other gutters are just like that," said
Jack. "So are the brooks all over the country,
and it all runs into the Cocahutchie!"
"Father," said Jack, after supper, "I 'm go-
ing down to the creek."
"I wish you would," said his father. Come
back and tell us how it's looking."
"Could a freshet here do any damage?"
asked Mr. Murdoch.
"There's a big dam up at Four Corners," said


the blacksmith. "If anything should happen
there, we'd have trouble here, and you'd have
it in Mertonville, too."
Jack heard that as he was going out of the
door. He carried an umbrella; but the first thing
he noticed was that the force of the rain seemed
to have slackened as soon as he was out of doors.
It was now more like mist or a warm sleet, as if
Crofield were drifting through a cloud.
"The Washington House needs all the rain
it can get," said Jack, as he went along; "but
half the roof is caved in. I'm glad Livermore's
insured."
When Jack reached the creek he felt his heart
fairly jump with excitement. The Cocahutchie
was no longer a thin ribbon rippling along in a
wide stretch of sand and gravel. It was a tur-
bid, swollen, roaring flood, already filling all the
space under its bridge; and the clump of old trees
was in the water instead of on dry land.
Hurrah! shouted Jack. "As high as that
already, and the worst is to come! "
He could not see the dam at first, but the
gusts of wind were making openings in the mist,
and he soon caught glimpses of a great sheet of
foaming brown water.
I'll go and take a look at the dam," he said;
and he ran to the mill.
"It's just level with the dam," he said, after
one swift glance. I never thought of that. I
must go and tell old Hammond what's coming."
The miller's house was not far away, and he
and his family were at supper when there came
a bang at the door. Then it opened and Mrs.
Hammond exclaimed:
"Why, John Ogden "
I'm out o' breath," said Jack excitedly.
"You tell him that the water's 'most up to the
lower floor of the mill. If he's got anything
there that 'd be hurt by getting wet-"
Goodness, yes! shouted the miller, getting
up from the table, "enough to ruin me. There
are sacks of flour, meal, grain,--all sorts of
stuff. It must all go up to the second floor.
I '11 call all the hands."
"But," said his wife, it's Sunday "
Can't help it! he exclaimed; "the Coca-
hutchie's coming right up into the mill. Jack,
tell every man you see that I want him! "
Off went Jack homeward, but he spoke to half


439





CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


a dozen men on the way. He did not run, but
he went quickly enough; and when he reached
the house there was something waiting for him.
It was a horse with a blanket strapped on in-
stead of a saddle; and by it stood his father, and
near him stood his mother and Aunt Melinda and
Mary, bareheaded, for it was not raining, now.
Mount, Jack," said the blacksmith quietly.
" I 've seen the creek. It's only four and a half
miles to the Four Corers. Ride fast. See how
that dam looks and come back and tell me.
Mr. Murdoch will have his buggy ready to start
when you get back. See how many logs there
are in the saw-mill boom."
Oh, Jack!" exclaimed Mary, in a low,
suppressed voice. I wish that I were you!
It's a great day for you! "
He had sprung to the saddle while his father
was speaking, and he felt it was out of his power
to utter a word in reply. He did not need to
speak to the horse, for the moment Mr. Ogden
released the bit there was a quick bound forward.
This horse is ready to go," said Jack to him-
self, as he felt that motion. "I 've seen her before.
I wonder what's made her so excited ? "
There was no need for wonder. The trim,
light-limbed sorrel mare he was riding had been
kept in the hotel stables until that day. She had
been taken out to a neighboring stable, at the
morning alarm of fire, and when the blacksmith
went to borrow her he found her laboring under
a strong impression that things in Crofield were
going wrong. She was therefore inclined to go
fast, and all that Jack had to do was to hold her
in. The blacksmith's son was at home in the
saddle. It was not yet dark, and he knew the
road to the Four Corners. It was a muddy road,
and there was a little stream of water along each
side of it. Spattered and splashed from head
to foot were rider and horse, but the miles van-
ished rapidly and the Four Corers was reached.
A smaller village than Crofield, further up
among the hills, it had a higher dam, a three
times larger pond, a bigger grist-mill, and a large
saw-mill. That was because there were forests
of timber among the yet higher hills beyond, and
Mr. Ogden had been thinking seriously about the
logs from those forests.
I know what Father means," said Jack aloud,
as he galloped into the village.


There were hardly any people stirring about
its one long street; but there was a reason for
that and Jack found out what it was when he
pulled up near the mill.
"Everybody has come to watch the dam,"
he exclaimed. No use asking about the logs,
though; there they are."
The crowd was evidently excited, and the air
was filled with shouts and answers.
The boom got unhitched and swung round
'cross the dam," said one eager speaker; and
there 's all the logs, now,- hundreds on 'em,-
just a-pilin' up and a-heapin' up on the dam;
and when that breaks, the dam '11 go, mill and
all, bridge and all, and the valley below '11 be
flooded!"
The moon was up, and the clouds which had
hidden it were breaking away as Jack looked
at the threatening spectacle before him.
The sorrel mare was tugging hard at the rein
and pawing the mud under her feet, while Jack
listened to the talk.
Stand it? No !" he heard a man say.
"That dam was n't built to stand any such
crowdin' as that. Hark! "
A groaning, straining, cracking sound came
from the barrier behind which the foaming flood
was widening and deepening the pond.
"There it goes It's breaking! "
Jack wheeled the sorrel, as a dull, thunderous
report was answered by a great cry from the
crowd; and then he dashed away down the
homeward road.
"I must get to Crofield before the water
does," he said. Glad the creek's so crooked;
it has twice as far to travel as I have."
Not quite, considering how a flood will sweep
over a bend instead of following it. Still, Jack
and the sorrel had the start, and nearly all the
way it was a downhill road.
The Crofield people gathered fast, after the
sky cleared, for a rumor went around that there
was something wrong with the dam, and that a
man had gone to the Four Corners to warn the
people there.
All the men that could crowd into the mill
had helped Mr. Hammond get his grain up into
the second story, but the water was a hand-
breadth deep on the lower floor by the time it
was done.'


440





CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


There came a moment when all was silent ex-
cept the roar of the water, and through that
silence the thud of hoofs was heard coming
down from Main street. Then a shrill, excited
voice shouted:
All of you get off that bridge! The Four
Corners dam's gone. The boom 's broken, and
the logs are coming! "
There was a tumult of questioning, as men


was very muddy but none the worse for the ser-
vice she had rendered.
The crowd stood waiting for what was sure
to come. Miller Hammond was anxiously
watching his threatened and already damaged
property. Jack came and stood beside him.
Mr. Hammond," he said, all the gravel
that you were going to sell to Father is lying
under water."


---- L _- - ---- ------ g ,.- --





'K --.t4I ~-' -
r .,

I I 111 wb r "r'
I [ I




V -'-
Ii



vN
--- -,,.

a fI

1771- ,i,





"'RUN, MOLLY RUN FOR HOME!' SHOUTED JACK. 'IT 'S GOING TO BE AN AWFUL STORM."' (SEE PAGE 437.)


gathered around the sorrel, and there was a
swift clearing of people from the bridge.
"Why, it 's shaking now!" said the black-
smith to Mr. Murdoch. It 'll go down with
the first log that strikes it. You drive your best
home to Mertonville and warn them. You may
be just in time."
Away went the editor, carrying with him
an extraordinary treasure of news for the next
number of his journal. Jack dismounted, and
her owner took the sorrel to her stable; she
VOL. XVII.-53.


More than two acres of it," said the miller.
"The water '11 run off, though. I '11 tell you
what I '11 do, Jack. I '11 sell it for two hun-
dred dollars, considering the flood."
If Father '11 take it, will you count in the fifty
you said you owed me? inquired Jack.
The miller made a wry face for a moment, but
then responded, smiling:
"Well! After what you 've done to-night,
too: saved all there was on the first floor,-yes,
I will. Tell him I '11 do it."


441





CROWDED OUT O' CROFIELD.


They all turned suddenly toward the dam. A
high ridge of water was sweeping down across
the pond. It carried a crest of foam, logs,
planks, and rubbish, shining white in the moon-
light, and it rolled on toward the mill and the
dam as if it had an errand.
Crash roar crash and a plunging
sound,-and it seemed as if the Crofield dam
had vanished. But it had not. Only a section
of its top work, in the middle, had been knocked
away by the rushing stroke of those logs.
A frightened shout went up from the specta-
tors, and it had hardly died away before there
followed another splintering crash.
"The bridge shouted Jack.
The frail supports of the bridge, brittle with
age and weather, already straining hard against
the furious water, needed only the battering of
the first heavy logs from the boom, and down
they went.
"Gone!" exclaimed Mr. Ogden. The
hotel 's gone, and the meeting-house, and the
dam, and the bridge. There won't be anything
left of Crofield, at this rate."
"I 'm going to get out of it," said Jack.
"I '11 never refuse you again," replied his
father, with energy. "You may get out any
way you can, and take your chances anywhere
you please. I won't stand in your way."
The roar of the surging Cocahutchie was the
only sound heard for a full minute, and then the
miller spoke.
The mill 's safe," he said, with a very long
breath of relief; the breaking of that hole in
the dam let the water and logs through, and the
pond is n't rising. Hurrah!"
There was a very faint and scattering cheer,
and Jack Ogden did not join in it. He had
turned suddenly and walked away homeward,
along the narrow strip of land that remained
between the wide, swollen Cocahutchie and the
fence.
At the end of the fence, where he came
into his own street, away above where the head
of the bridge had been, there was a large gath-
ering. That around the mill had been nearly
all of men and boys. Here were women and
girls, and the smaller boys, whose mothers and
aunts held them and kept them from going
nearer the water. Jack found it of no use


to say, Oh, mother, I 'm too muddy!"
She did n't care how muddy he was, and Aunt
Melinda cared even less, apparently. Bessie
and Sue had evidently been crying; but Mary
had not; and it was her hand on Jack's arm
that led him away, up the street, toward their
gate.
"Oh, Jack she exclaimed, "I 'm so proud
Did you ride fast? I 'm glad I can ride! I
could have done it, too. It was splendid! "
Molly," said Jack, I don't mind telling
you. The sorrel mare galloped all the way,
going and coming, up hill and down; and
Molly, I kept wishing and thinking every
jump she gave,- wishing I was galloping to
New York, instead of to the Four Corners!
"Molly," he added quickly, Father gives it
up and says I may go "

CHAPTER VI.

MONDAY morning came, bright and sunshiny;
and it hardly reached Crofield before the peo-
ple began to get up and look about them.
Jack went down to the river and did not come
back very soon. His mind was full of some-
thing besides the flood, and he did not linger
long at the mill.
But he looked long and hard at all the pieces
of land below the mill, down to Deacon Haw-
kins's line. He knew where that was, although
the fence was gone.
"The freshet did n't wash away a foot of it,"
he said. "I 'll tell Father what Mr. Hammond
said about selling it."
A pair of well-dressed men drove down from
Main street in a buggy and halted near him.
"Brady," said one of these men, "the engineer
is right. We can't change the railroad line.
We can say to the Crofield people that if they '11
give us the right of way through the village
we '11 build them a new bridge. They '11 do it.
Right here's the spot for the station."
"Exactly," said the other man, "and the
less we say about it the better. Keep mum."
"That's just what I '11 do, too," said Jack to
himself, as they drove away. "I don't know
what they mean, but it '11 come out some
day."
Jack went home at once, and found the family


442


[MAR.




CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


at breakfast. After breakfast his father went to
the shop, and Jack followed him to speak about
the land purchase.
When Jack explained the miller's offer, Mr.
Ogden went with him to see Mr. Hammond.
After a short interview, Mr. Ogden and Jack
secured the land in settlement of the amount


"Station?-right of way?" exclaimed Mr.
Ogden. "That's the new railroad through
Mertonville. They 'll use up that land, and
we won't get a cent. Well, it did n't cost any-
thing. I 'd about given up collecting that bill."
Later that day, Jack came in to dinner with
a smile on his face. It was the old smile, too;


j7
.... *- ....



S..- ..
"THE SORREL MARE WAS TUGGING HARD AT THE REIN AND PAWING THE MUD UNDER HER FEET." (SEE PAGE 440.)


already promised Jack, and of an old debt owed
by the miller to the blacksmith, and also in con-
sideration of their consenting to a previous sale
of the trees for cash to the Bannermans, who had
made their offer that morning. Mr. Hammond
seemed very glad to make the sale upon these
terms, as he was in need of ready money.
When Jack returned to his father's shop, he
remembered the men he had seen at the river,
and he told his father what they had said.


a smile of good-humored self-confidence, which
flickered over his lips from side to side, and
twisted them, and shut his mouth tight. Just
as he was about to speak, his father took a
long, neatly folded paper out of his coat pocket
and laid it on the table.
Look at that, Jack," he said; and show it
to your mother."
"Warranty deed! exclaimed Jack, reading
the print on the outside. Father! you did n't





CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


turn it over to me, did you? Mother, it 's
to John Ogden, Jr.! "
"Oh, John she began, and stopped.
"Why, my dear," laughed the blacksmith,
cheerfully, "it 's his gravel, not mine. I '11
hold it for him, for a while, but it is Jack's
whenever I choose to record that deed."
"I 'm afraid I could n't farm it there," said
Jack; and then the smile on his face flickered
fast. But I knew Father wanted that land."
It is n't worth much, but it 's a beginning,"
said Mary. "I 'd like to own something or
other, or to go somewhere."
"Well, Molly," answered Jack, smiling, "you
can go to Mertonville. Livermore says there 's
a team here, horses and open carriage. It came
over on Friday. The driver has cleared out,
and somebody must take them home, and he
wants me to drive over. Can't I take Molly,
Mother ?"
"You 'd have to walk back," said his father,
"but that's nothing much. It 's less than nine
miles -"
"Father," said Jack, "you said, last night, I
need n't come back to Crofield, right away.
And Mertonville 's nine miles nearer the city -"
"And a good many times nine miles yet to
go," exclaimed the blacksmith; but then he
added, smiling, Go ahead, Jack. I do be-
lieve that if any boy can get there, you can."
I '11 do it somehow," said Jack, with a de-
termined nod.
Of course you will," said Mary.
Jack felt as if circumstances were changing
pretty fast, so far as he was concerned; and so
did Mary, for she had about given up all hope
of seeing her friends in Mertonville.
We '11 get you ready, right away," said Aunt
Melinda. "You can give Jack your traveling-
bag,-he won't mind the key's being lost,--
and I '11 let you take my trunk, and we '11 fit
you out so you can enjoy it."
"Jack," said his father, "tell Livermore you
can go, and then I want to see you at the shop."
Jack was so glad he could hardly speak; for
he felt it was the first step. But a part of his
feeling was that he had never before loved Cro-
field and all the people in it, especially his own
family, so much as at that minute.
He went over to the ruined hotel, where he


found the landlord at work saving all sorts of
things and seeming to feel reasonably cheerful
over his misfortunes.
"Jack," he said, as soon as he was told that
Jack was ready to go, "you and Molly will
have company. Miss Glidden sent to know
how she could best get over to Mertonville, and
I said she could go with you. There 's a vis-
itor, too, who must go back with her."
"I '11 take 'em," said Jack.
Upon going to the shop he found his father
shoeing a horse. The blacksmith beckoned his
son to the further end of the shop. He heard
about Miss Glidden, and listened in silence to
several hopeful things Jack had to say about
what he meant to do sooner or later.
"Well," he said, at last, I was right not to
let you go before, and I 've doubts about it
now, but something must be done. I 'm mak-
ing less and less, and not much of it's cash, and
it costs more to live, and they 're all growing up.
I don't want you to make me any promises.
They are broken too easily. You need n't form
good resolutions. They won't hold water.
There 's one thing I want you to do, though.
Your mother and I have brought you up as
straight as a string, and you know what 's right
and what 's wrong."
"That 's true," said Jack.
"Well, then, don't you promise nor form any
resolutions, but if you 're tempted to do wrong,
or to be a fool in any kind of way, just don't do
it, that 's all."
"I won't, Father," said Jack earnestly.
"There," said his father, I feel better satis-
fied than I should feel if you 'd promised a
hundred things. It 's a great deal better not
to do anything that you know to be wrong
or foolish."
"I think so," said Jack, "and I won't."
"Go home now and get ready," said his
father; "and I '11 see you off."
This is very sudden, Jack," said his mother,
with much feeling, when he made his appearance.
Why, Mother," said Jack, Molly '11 be
back soon, and the city is n't so far away after
all."
Jack felt as if he had only about enough head
left to change his clothes and drive the team.
It'sjust as Mother says," he thought; I 've


[MAR.





CROWDED OUT 0' CROFIELD.


been wishing and hoping for it, but it 's come
very suddenly."
His black traveling-bag was quickly ready.
He had closed it and was walking to the door
when his mother came in.
Jack," she said, you '11 send me a postal
card every day or two ?"
Of course I will," said
he bravely.
"And I know you 'll be
back in a few weeks, at
most," she went on; "but
I feel as sad as if you were 1,
really going away from i
home. Why, you 're al-
most a child! You can't
really be going away "
That was where the talk
stopped for a while, except
some last words that Jack
could never forget. Then
she dried her eyes and he
dried his, and they went
downstairs together. It I
was hard to say good-bye
to all the family, and he
was glad his father was
not there. He got away
from them as soon as he (
could, and went over to
the stables after his team. II
It was a bay team, with a
fine harness, and the open F
carriage was almost new.
"Stylish!" said Jack.
"I '11 take Molly on the -"
front seat with me,-no,
the trunk,- and Miss Glid- "HE LISTENED IN SILENCE
den's trunk,--well, I '11 get 'em all in somehow!"
When he drove up in fiont of the house his
father was there to put the baggage in and to
help Mary into the carriage and to shake hands
with Jack.
The blacksmith's grimy face looked less
gloomy for a moment.
Jack," he said, good-bye. Maybe you '11
really get to the city after all."
"I think I shall," said Jack, with an effort
to speak calmly.
"Well," said the blacksmith, slowly, I hope


you will, somehow; but don't you forget that
there 's another city."
Jack knew what he meant. They shook hands,
and in another moment the bays were trotting
briskly on their way to Miss Glidden's. Her
house was one of the finest in Crofield, with


TO SEVERAL HOPEFUL THINGS JACK HAD TO SAY." (SEE PAGE 444.)
lawn and shrubbery. Mary Ogden had never
been inside of it, but she had heard that it was
beautifully furnished. There were Miss Glidden
and her friend on the piazza, and out at the
sidewalk, by the gate, was a pile of baggage, at
the sight of which Jack exclaimed:
"Trunks! They 're young houses! How '11
I get 'em all in ? I can strap and rope one on
the back of the carriage, but then-! "
Miss Glidden frowned at first, when the car-
riage pulled up, but she came out to the gate,
smiling, and so did the other lady.


445





CROWDED OUT O' CROFIELD.


"Why, Mary Ogden, my dear," she said,
"Mrs. Potter and I did not know you were go-
ing with us. It 's quite a surprise."
So it is to Jack and me," replied Mary
quietly. We were very glad to have you come,
though, if we can find room for your trunks."
"I can manage 'em," said Jack. Miss
Glidden, you and Mrs. Potter get in, and Pat
and I '11 pack the trunks on somehow."
Pat was the man who had brought out the
luggage, and he was waiting to help. He was
needed. It was a very full carriage when he
and Jack finished their work. There was room
made for the passengers by putting Mary's
small trunk down in front, so that Jack's feet
sprawled over it from the nook where he sat.
"I can manage the team," Jack said to him-
self. "They won't run away with this load."
Mary sat behind him, the other two on the
back seat, and all the rest of the carriage was
trunks; not to speak of what Jack called a
"young house," moored behind.
It all helped Jack to recover his usual com-
posure, nevertheless, and he drove out of Cro-
field, on the Mertonville road, confidently.
"We shall discern traces of the devastation
occasioned by the recent inundation, as we
progress," remarked Mrs. Potter.
Jack replied: Oh, no! The creek takes a
great swoop, below Crofield, and the road 's a
short cut. There '11 be some mud, though."
He was right and wrong. There was mud
that forced the heavily laden carriage to travel
slowly, here and there, but there was nothing
seen of the Cocahutchie for several miles.
Hullo !" exclaimed Jack suddenly. "It
looks like a kind of lake. It does n't come up
over the road, though. I wonder what dam
has given out now! "
There was the road, safe enough, but all the
country to the right of it seemed to have been


turned into water. On rolled the carriage, the
horses now and then showing signs of fear and
distrust, and the two older passengers express-
ing ten times as much.
Now, Molly," said Jack, at last, there's a
bridge across the creek, a little ahead of this. I 'd
forgotten about that. Hope it's there yet."
"Oh, dear me exclaimed Miss Glidden.
Don't prognosticate disaster," said Mrs. Pot-
ter earnestly; and it occurred to Jack that he
had heard more long words during that drive
than any one boy could hope to remember.
"Hurrah he shouted, a few minutes later.
"Link's bridge is there! There's water on both
sides of the road, though."
It was an old bridge, like that at Crofield,
and it was narrow, and it trembled and shook
while the snorting bays pranced and shied their
frightened way across it. They went down the
slope on the other side with a dash that would
have been a bolt, if Jack had not been ready
for them. Jack was holding them with a hard
pull upon the reins, but he was also looking up
the Cocahutchie.
I see what's the matter," he said. "The
logs got stuck in a narrow place, and made a
dam of their own, and set the water back over
the flat. The freshet has n't reached Merton-
ville yet. Jingo! "
Bang, crack, crash!-came a sharp sound
behind him.
The bridge is down!" he shouted. "We
were only just in time. Some of the logs have
been carried down, and one of them knocked it
endways."
That was precisely the truth of the matter;
and away went the bays, as if they meant to
race with the freshet to see which would first
arrive in Mertonville.
"I 'm on my way to the city, anyhow,"
thought Jack, with deep satisfaction.


(To be continued.)


WINTER COSTUMES.

BY ROSE MUELLER SPRAGUE.

THE sketch, on page 447, of three costumes for winter We suggest for them a scheme of color which may be
wear, shows one for a young girl of sixteen years of age, of assistance to those who may care to utilize these hints
one for a girl of twelve, and one for a child of three. for picturesque costuming.


446


[MAR.





WINTER COSTUMES.


For the girl of sixteen, it is suggested that mode
brown serge might be used for jacket and gown. The
jacket might be trimmed with narrow silk braid of the
same color as the cloth. The buttons can be of light tan-
colored horn. The crown of the hat is of felt, of a color
to match the costume, and the brim is to be faced with
dark brown (the color called tobacco ") velvet. The
feather trimming is a light tuft of brown feathers.
For the girl of twelve, "copper red" cloth might be
used for the long garment, which completely conceals the
gown underneath. The lapels, collar, and the sleeves
should be made of velvet, of the same shade as the cloth.
Let the buttons be "tailor-made," and covered with the


same cloth as that used for the garment. At the back is
a "jaunty" capote of copper velvet, trimmed with black
ostrich pompons and with an aigrette.
The costume for the little child might be made from
light coach cloth." The capes and collars may be pret-
tily lined with surah of the same color as the coat. One
of the capes should be trimmed (as indicated in the
sketch) with plain-edge gros-grain ribbon, half an inch
wide. The buttons for this dress can be covered with
gros-grain silk of the same shade as the ribbon. The
little capote of light coach" velvet should be trimmed
with a knot of ribbon at the point of the cape and should
have ribbons to tie in a bow under the chin.


447




























"THEREBY HANGS


A TAIL."


BY HARPER PENNINGTON.


MUCH has been written, early and late, con-
cerning kites and how to make them; but no
one seems to have paid proper attention to one
very important part of this great subject-that
is, the making of the kite's tail. Now, the tail
of a kite does for the kite precisely what ballast
does for a ship. No vessel will sail well and
steadily unless her ballast is properly adjusted;
and the same principle applies to kites.
A bad kite with a good tail will fly better
than a good kite with a bad tail.
I will explain the way in which a tail should
be made.
Generally speaking, the tail should be four
times the length of the kite.
Tie one end of a ball of twine to some ob-
ject that is firm (I always use a door-knob),
and proceed to make an ordinary slip-knot
(No. i), three or four feet from where the


twine is fastened. Two knots are shown in
the diagram.
Into this slip-knot insert one end of a strip of
flannel, cloth, or calico, half an inch in width
and half the length of the kite (No. 2), and pull
the knot tight (No. 3). Then make another
loop two and a half inches from the first, and
proceed as in the first case, continuing in like
manner until you have a sufficient quantity.
The next thing is to trim the strips, graduating
them like those in the illustration (No. 4).
My own plan is to use one yard of blue and
one yard of red flannel, and one yard of com-
mon muslin. Three yards will be more than
enough material for the tail of a kite six feet
long. Tearing each into strips half an inch
wide, I arrange them as already explained and
shown in No. 4.
The result is a very handsome kite-tail.


, \,





"THEREBY HANGS A TAIL."


SWHIT -


I do not propose to say very much about the
making of kites themselves, because that sub-
ject has been exhaustively treated by others.*
There is one specimen, however, worthy of men-
tion, which has not been put on record, I be-
lieve. You will see a sketch of it in cut No. 5.
The sticks are prolonged beyond the actual
size of the covering; from their tips is stretched
a string around the kite's edge on which are


NW 6


pasted strips of fringed tissue paper, doubled
across it (No. 6).
If the colors of the kite cover and of the
fringe are tastefully chosen, this makes a very
handsome, though somewhat heavy, kite.
Uniform colors are generally better in effect
than are bits of red, green, blue, and yellow;
because with paper of one color the lines of
your kite are plainly visible. Fancy a yacht
painted in red, white, and blue sections! What
would we see of her symmetry ?


In diagrams 7 and 8 you see the correct pro-
portion of the tail and belly-band of a kite.
The strings (AA) which sustain the kite's tail
are fastened to the sticks at their lower ends,
and when drawn taut, their center should be
just long enough to reach the crossing of the
sticks. To these strings the tail is tied firmly
at the center, and care should be taken that
the knot comes exactly in the middle.
The "belly-band" (BB,C) is also drawn in
correct proportion. Tie E and BB at D, leav-
ing a few feet of twine from E beyond the knot,
so that you will have something on which to
fasten your flying-string.
The picture No. 9, and also the head-piece,
show the proper way to raise a kite.
Have a young friend to hold it, facing the
wind, and be careful to
place the tail straight
out in front; make
Assure that the tail is not
Strangled, nor in danger
\ /of catching upon any-
Sthing. Then give
the word, run back a
.- ----- few paces, and your
kite will sail steadily
and gracefully from the
earth, as shown in the





cut, and soon take the
position of the one at AA
the top of the drawing N' B
(1No: 10).
When a kite twirls round and
round, it is because the tail is too
light. "Darting" comes from the
same cause, as a rule; although this
may come from a badly balanced tail, or an
ill-adjusted belly-band. Wobbling is caused
by putting the cross-stick too high, usually, or by


* See Kite-time," in ST. NICHOLAS for March, 1880.


RED


Nt 4


449


VOL. XVII.-54.




"THEREBY HANGS A TAIL."


.3 1~~; ; ,- ~.~


~r


making the belly-band at BB too long for the
string C.
Kite-flying can be made an exciting game, as
well as a pleasant pastime.
A certain ingenious companion of my child-
hood saved his pocket-money, and had made for
him by an obliging cutler, the little instrument


shown in No. i. Only three tiny, hook-shaped,
steel blades, as sharp as knives, set in a swivel.
This engine of destruction being tied securely to
the tail of his kite, he went out to fly it amongst
those of the other boys.
Of course you know what happened My in-
genious friend would haul in his line, and getting
behind some unsuspecting youth, would drop"
his own kite until its tail caught and dragged
across the other fellow's string, which, very nat-
urally, was neatly hooked and severed
~ by one of the little knives.
To be sure he
did get a sound
Thrashing for it







in the end; but out of his invention grew a
game of" pirates," which did more to teach us
how to manage kites than any other thing.
Just try it!
But, for good sport's sake, do give your kites
the proper sort of tails; and let paper-wads, and
other similar horrors, be abolished forever.


MOTHER NATURE'S BABES IN THE WOOD.

BY E. M. HARDING.


ON the trees, the bushes, and under the ground
at this season are flowers and leaves asleep, and
almost ready to awaken. Dame Nature is nurse
to them all, and while they slept she has kept
them dry and warm.
If you pick a short branch from a tree or
shrub, you will see upon it, at regular distances
apart, little knobs or humps. These are the
buds of leaves and blossoms which will soon
awaken, and unfold, and fill the earth with
perfume and beauty.
If Jack Frost had got at them, or if the cold


rains had beaten on them, they would have
been blighted. So the buds have been carefully
protected all winter from the cold, the damp,
and the fierce winds.
Each bud is wrapped up in a number of little
stiff scales. Often these scales are coated with a
sort of varnish which keeps out the wet.
The buds of the horse-chestnut are "pitched
without with pitch," like the floating cradle of
the infant Moses. They are quite sticky to the
touch, and shed water like a rubber coat.
Indeed, we may say that the baby horse-chest-


450






MOTHER NATURE'S BABES IN THE WOOD.


nut leaves wear fur-lined waterproof coats, for
the scales which are so sticky on the outside are
thickly lined with soft white down.
Many other buds are protected from wet and
cold in the same manner.
The tiny locust and sumach leaves are
guarded during their winter sleep in yet another
way. They are hid so cleverly that Jack Frost
can not find them, and it would puzzle us, also, to
find them unless we knew just where to look,
Those of the sumach are sunk in the thick
bark until they begin to grow, and those of the
honey-locust are buried deep in those humps
from which the thorns appear to spring. Cro-
cuses, anemones, daffodils, and all the other
spring flowers which grow straight up out of the
ground have been protected under a covering
of soil and dead leaves.
Some leaves and blossoms are already awak-
ening from their winter sleep. The rest will fin-
ish their slumbers soon, and once awake they
will begin to grow in a most surprising way.
We have all read, in "The Arabian Nights,"
how a gigantic genie came out of a small
pickle-jar. If we look about us this spring we
will see this wonder outdone by any hedgerow.
These lilac buds are no larger than the tip of
a woman's little finger; yet some of them con-
tain a spray with several leaves, and from others
there will come a great spire of flowers.
The sticky horse-chestnut buds will open to
let out into the sun four or five great spreading
leaves surrounding a pyramid of blossoms.
How snugly they are folded away in these
little brown buds! No shopman could wrap
parcels half so cleverly as Mother Nature does.
No French maid ever packed her mistress's
finery with half the skill which Nature has shown
in the folding of baby blossom or tender leaf.
Girls know that dresses which have been
lying for a long time folded away in a drawer
or trunk are creased when they are taken out.
So are the leaves, when they come out of the
buds where they have been tightly folded for
so many months. After a while the breezes will
shake out all these little wrinkles, but when the
foliage is new and fresh we can see them plainly.
Some leaves have been rolled like music in


a portable case, or like a window-shade around
its roller. Some have been folded like fans, and
some have been doubled lengthwise down the
middle as a school-girl folds her composition.
May-apple leaves come up looking like closed
umbrellas, and then open just as umbrellas do.
The crinkled spring foliage is very pretty and
interesting, too; for the creases show how
Mother Nature contrived to get so many leaves
into so small a parcel.
And where is the food which has been pre-
pared for these awakening buds? Growing
leaves and flowers, like growing children, need
plenty of nourishment, and Dame Nature has
provided whole storehouses full of food just
such as young foliage and baby blossoms need.
The crocus and the daffodil get their food
from little storehouses underground.
If we dig up a root early in spring, before the
flowers have opened, we shall find it white, firm,
round, and fat. The flower-stem is able to shoot
up so fast because it is nourished by this abun-
dant good fare, just as a boy who is outgrowing
all his clothes is doing it by means of unnum-
bered breakfasts, dinners, and suppers. The
blossom owes much of its beauty to this stored
food; and if the supply were to give out, the
colors of the flower would grow dim.
By the time the blossom dies the little store-
house will be emptied, but then the crocus will
have formed long leaves and active roots, and
will be able to gather enough nourishment from
the soil and the air to satisfy all its wants.
The lilac leaves grow so fast because they are
well fed on food which has been saved on pur-
pose for them all winter long. It has been
stored away just under -the bark, so that the
lilac's storehouse is in its branches.
All the boughs which are now beginning to
put forth leaves and flowers are full of gum and
sap. These juices have been "saved up" all
winter in the wood and bark, and now they feed
the swelling buds, the unfolding leaves, and the
opening flowers.
There is plenty for all, and each is getting
just the sort of food it needs, for Nature, like a
wise and loving mother, guards the slumbers
and provides for the wants of all her children.












THE LETTER-BOX.


T5KIJi, JAPAN, Nov. 5, '89.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I am a Japanese boy of fifteen
years old. I have been your loving reader for the last two
years, and I am much indebted to you for your many, many
amusing stories, interesting fables, beautiful pictures, etc.
I have never written to you before, being ashamed of
my broken English; but this time I was encouraged to
take up my pen in order to write to you for the first time,
by a fact that his highness, Prince Haru, son of His
Majesty, our present Emperor, was proclaimed to be the
Crown Prince the day before yesterday, which is the
birthday of our Emperor, and consequently the greatest
holiday in our country. So, my dear ST. NICHOLAS, do
not laugh at my broken English.
How rejoiced we were on that day. We, of course,
school-boys, went to the Palace's gate, and there, when
the Prince came out, we cheered him thrice: "Long live
Prince! Cannons were fired, streets were decorated,
national flags were hung out at every house, and people,
young and old, were alike mad with rejoicing.
Ah Long live our Emperor and Prince! Long live
your President! Japan and America! Blessed lands!
The July number of ST. NICHOLAS contains an article
of Prince Haru; but it is full of stories based upon, I say,
nothing. Such as His Highness's wrestling with an
American boy is quite absurd. Besides, His Highness's
portrait is somewhat ugly, and I am very much angry
with it.
I send to you three copies of a Japanese magazine
called "Sh6nen-yen" (literally The Young Peoples'
Garden), which has a circulation of about twenty thou-
sand copies every number. In one of it you shall find
a fine portrait of His Highness, Prince Haru. It was
taken after a photograph. The four red-colored pages
in the same number contains an article of His High-
ness's character and daily pursuits, which, if you want,
I will gladly translate into English and send to you.
Yours is no doubt taken from a vulgar painting drawn
by an inferior artist, and sold in Japanese street toy-
shops.
The other two copies contain some Japanese stories in
English, and so I send them to you, hoping that they will
amuse you.
In February number, you have published a portrait of
our sacred Emperor, but, like that of the Prince, it is quite
absurd.
I have written too long a letter, so I shall stop here;
next time I will write more about our beloved Emperor
and Prince and the Japanese children. Hoping to take
your magazine for many years yet to come, I remain your
antipode and admiring reader,
FUMIo YAMAGATA.

WASHINGTON, D. C., Dec. 28, 1889.
DEAR FUMIO YAMAGATA SAN: I agree with you that
the engraved portrait of His Highness Prince Haru did
not do him justice, but it follows as closely as American
engravers could make it do the large photograph of the
prince taken by K. Ogawa, of Tokio.
The foreign boy with whom Prince Haru had the little
adventure which I mentioned is the son of the late Mr.
Frederick Strange, of Tokio, and if you will find him, he
can assure you that such a thing really happened.


I greatly admire your patriotic defense of your prince,
and your charming letter, which could not be better writ-
ten or more clearly expressed by any fifteen-year-old
American boy whom I know.
Very truly, ELIZA RUHAMAH SCIDMORE.

(Author of the article "Yoshi Hito, Haru No Miya,
the Child of Modern Japan," in ST. NICHOLAS for July,
1889).


The story entitled Fifteen Minutes With a Cyclone,"
in this number of ST. NICHOLAS, is so remarkable that a
letter of inquiry concerning the facts was forwarded to
the author, who sent in reply the letter which follows:

WEST MEDFORD, MASS.
EDITOR ST. NICHOLAS: In regard to the story "Fif-
teen Minutes with a Cyclone," I assure you that the ac-
count is true in all the essential points, as I have written
it. The facts were given me by the gentleman's brother,
who visited the scene a few days later. The family now
reside in Malden, Mass., and I can give you names if you
so desire. I think it not at all strange that you should
doubt the authenticity of the account, for it was a most
remarkable experience, the family escaping unhurt, and
even the cattle found standing in their usual places; while
the miraculous escape of the gentleman himself, who
descended head first into the well, is unparalleled. It is
one of the instances where truth is stranger than fiction.
Respectfully,
M. LOUISE FORD.


WILLIAMSPORT, PA.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I have been taking you for four
years, and have never written you a letter.
I am nine years old, and both my little sister and I
enjoy your magazine very much.
We had a very unpleasant time June Ist, at the time
of the flood, when the water rose and came in the house.
But I thought I would make the best of it, so I took a
piece of board-walk for a raft and sailed around in the
yard and on the street.
After the water came up in the house, we stood on the
stair steps and fished.
My Grandma sends you to me for a Christmas present.
Yours truly, JAMES B- .


FLUSHING, L. I.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I thought the "Sir Rat" was
very nice. I hope you '11 give another just as nice as
that, so we can act it. .We acted Sir Rat" on Thanks-
giving at Grandmama's.
I am a little girl six years old. My sister is twelve,
and my brother, the little one, is four, and my big
brother is eight.
My little bit of a brother acted Tommy's part, and my
sister acted the father and mother, and my big brother
acted Sir Rat.
Good-bye, I am, your little girl,
HENRIETTA L. S-.





THE LETTER-BOX.


LIMA, PERU, Oct. 22d, 1889.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I live in Lima, the capital of
Peru, where, strange as it will seem to some of your young
readers, snow never falls, and it never rains, except slight
dews on wintry mornings, if they can be called rain.
Flowers- the most beautiful ones bloom also through-
out the whole year, and delicious fruits grow.
The city is situated at a very small distance from the
.Pacific Ocean and very near the Andes, this being the
cause of frequent and sometimes terrible earthquakes;
we are now in the season of earthquakes, for they gener-
ally come during the months of September and October,
although this year we had a severe one on the 28th of
July, precisely the day of Peru's anniversary, and this
month we have not had any until now.
I agree with all your readers in saying that "Little
Lord Fauntleroy" is the prettiest story that ever was
written.
I saw Elsie Leslie Lyde's photograph in the April
number, and I think it is charming. Every month I
look forward to your coming with great pleasure.
Your constant little reader,
ANITA R. B--.

CINCINNATI, 0.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I have an interesting story to
tell about some turtles we caught.
Summer before last, when my brother and I were
visiting our grandfather in Waltham, Mass., we rowed
up the Charles River, which flows through that place, and,
after some time, caught a turtle a little larger than a
silver dollar. This we named Juan. He was beauti-
fully colored with yellow, red, and black, and on getting
home we placed him in a tin pan full of water on a win-
dow sill, after putting a few bits of meat and cracker in
the water.
The next day we went to see how Juan was, and to
our astonishment he was gone. We hunted everywhere,
but could not find him. We again went up river, and, in
the very same place, found a turtle the same size, which
we named Juanita.
We took her home, and, putting her in the same place
that Juan was put, left her for the night. The next
morning she was gone, also, and after hunting a long
time I found them both huddled together in a corner of
the dining-room behind an ottoman. We put them in
a much deeper pan, and they did not run away again.
When we left Grandpa's we took the turtles to the river,
and they each swam off in a different direction.
This last summer we again went to Waltham, and
caught five little turtles. Two of them, considerably
larger than the others, were named Juan and Don Jose.
Two, a little smaller than these, were Juanita and Sen-
ora, and one, the smallest I ever saw, was Amigo.
We were so attached to these that when we went to our
other Grandpa's we took them in a tin pail with holes in
the cover. The people in the train around us seemed
very anxious to see what we had, and, when we let them
take a peep, they admired them very much.
We wanted to take them to Cincinnati with us, but were
afraid they would be homesick away from their native
river.
I have taken you for three years now, and like you
very much. I remain, your interested reader,
MABEL W-.


MY DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: We take you regularly, and
read all the stories, the letters, and the riddles, but some
of the last are very hard.
As we have some very dear friends at Seattle, near
Tacoma, we were very much interested in the "Old
Boy's" letter from there.


I spent the summer at a very pretty little place on
Nantucket Island, Siasconset, or S'conset, as the natives
call it; perhaps some of your other readers have been
there, for I met you several times. Among the other
people who took you, there was a tiny little girl from
quite far out West, and both she and her little sister read
you constantly, though the little one could hardly read
at all.
We all enjoy your December number so much with
the Boyhood of Thackeray," for we all love The Rose
and the Ring," and are glad to know something more
about the author. I remain, your loving reader,
E. L. D--

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: Perhaps your readers would
like to hear about some of our Belgian customs.
St. Nicholas Day, Dec. 6th, is a grand day for children.
Every one of them firmly believes that Santa Claus rides,
with his toy-laden donkey, on the roof of every house,
and comes down the chimneys to lay presents in the
rooms. I used to put some hay by my empty shoe in
case the donkey might be hungry. We have Christmas-
trees, of course, with toys and oranges and gilded nuts,
but most of the real presents are given on New Year's
Day; there are "reveillons" on New Year's Eve, that
is, supper parties, where people are very merry and
drink toasts to the dawning year until I or 2 o'clock.
Much later in the morning come in all the presents;
flowers, chocolate, fondants, marrons glaces. I believe
our sweets are much prized in other countries.
A few days after that, on Jan. 6th, we have La Fete
des Rois Mages ; there is high fun at the dinner parties
that are given in many houses. At dessert, a great cake,
with one bean baked in it, is divided equally among the
guests (except one bit, kept for the first beggar who
comes). Whoever finds the bean in his or her bit is
crowned King or Queen of The Bean, chooses a partner
and attendants, and is made much of the whole evening.
Easter Day is welcome to all children, for" Les Cloches
de PAques," or Easter bells, bring them plenty of pres-
ents, usually in the shape of well-filled sugar eggs, or
huge chocolate eggs. For a week before Easter, the
bells in churches do not ring,.and the children are told
they have gone away to fetch toys and things. Even
the poorest people try to have some gay-colored eggs.
Among the presents given to them are often those wooden
shoes, or sabots, that foreigners admire so much, and that
make such splendid boats.
You see Belgian children often get presents, besides
upon birthdays; they are very well off in that respect.
I remain, your faithful reader, GRANNY.

CHARLESTON, S. C.
My DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I have taken you for several
years, but have never written to you before, and I hope
you will print this, as it is for a surprise to my darling
brother Leo, who is 'way down in California. I am lame
and can not walk much, and, dear ST. NICHOLAS, you
don't know how much you help me pass away the long
days.
I have a little brother named Halbert. He has a lan-
guage of his own, and nobody can understand him but
myself. He has big brown eyes and curly golden hair,
and is just three years old. I am twelve, and Leo is
twenty-two. I must close now, with much love.
Your little reader, ETTA DE W-


DETROIT, MICH.
MY DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I am a little girl ten years
old, and have taken you for only one year, and like you
so much I could not get along without you. Since I have


453





454 THE LET
taken you, I have never seen a letter from Detroit, so
thought I would write, hoping that this may interest some
of your readers. Mamma has a friend who draws for
the ST. NICHOLAS, her name is Rose Mueller Sprague.
One of her pictures was my baby brother.
We have a little dog, his name is "Tag," he sleeps in
the shed. One night some rats got in his bed, which is
a large soap-box, and he barked so loud that it scared
them all away, and we have not seen any since.
We all enjoy you very much and hope we will always
be able to take you.
Your affectionate friend, LOUISE E. B- .

DENVER, COL.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAs: I am a little boy, nine years
old. I have a little sister, two months old. I have only
lived in Denver since April. I used to live at Parkers-
burg, W. Va., near Blennerhasset's Island, where Aaron
Burr went to form his plot against our country. I went
to Pike's Peak this summer. It took five hours to go up
and three to return. It is nearly three miles in the air.
I went in a big wagon drawn by four horses for eight
miles, which is half-way, and then there were four mules
put in harness, in place of the horses. We could see it
raining hard all beneath us, and for a long time not a
drop came near us. Denver is a very pretty place to
live in, with broad streets, and about one hundred miles
of cable-roads. I like it very much, but I miss the rain.
I have taken you for three years. Your little friend,
REGINALD CECIL S-.

EVANSTON, ILL.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I got you on Christmas, and
think you are the best magazine going. We have taken
you for ten years. At first I could not read you, on
account of weak eyes. I am ten years old and have two
brothers, Richard and George.
We went to England last summer, and came back on
the same steamer with Mrs. Burnett. She had her boys
with her, and I used to play with them. Their names
are Lionel and Vivian.


TER-BOX.

I have a dog named Watch." He is a shepherd-dog.
So, with three cheers, I wish old ST. NICK a long life.
Your interested reader, JOEY N--


RALEIGH, N. C.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: Can you find room in your
"Letter-box" for a little "tar-heel"? Brother and I
do want to tell you that we are delighted with the ST.
NICHOLAS, and we will always speak a good word for it.
So many of your little subscribers have told amusing
incidents about their little brothers and sisters, that I
would like to tell one of my brother. He was very fond
of tea-cakes. One day Grandma gave him a balsam seed
and told him to plant it in the garden, and a tea-cake tree
would come up. He did so, watching it carefully every
day; at last he was rewarded by seeing a little tree full
of tea-cakes just where he had planted his seed; he
clapped his hands and exclaimed, Oh! my tea-cake seed
has come up"; he soon discovered the trick, but as he
had an apronful of cakes he could afford to enjoy the joke
with us. Your sincere admirer, LOULA H. B- .



WE thank the young friends whose names follow for
pleasant letters which we have received from them:
Mabel R., Allen D. P., Sarah G. N., Jessie W. K., Paul
R., Edith P. J., Mabel R., Hazel Duncan and Mamma,
Louise Parrish, Rose Hooper, Agnes G., Rowland H.,
Virginia L. and Bessie R., Marietta B. H., Margaret A.,
Mary B. J., Vinnie S., "S. M. A.," "Agrippa," George
K. G., Orville H., Lucy and Alice, Kathie A., Ernest H.
H., Mina S., Katrina MacM., Leon R., Isabel L., Lucy
W., Louie M. C., Annie M. C., L. M., Scott K., May K.,
Clifford M. B., Alice V. F. and Augusta N. T., Nellie L.,
George H. E., Charlotte E. B., Nellie McL., Willie S.;
Arthur L., J. Hall, Willie O., Lois Y., John K. T., Muriel
A. T., Minnie H. and Bessie G., Maud and Muriel F.,
B. H., Tone McC., Ernest J. L., Lina D., Amy L. H.,
William C., and Jennie G.


WE take pleasure in printing a picture sent to us by a young friend, Master E. A. Cleveland Coxe, who says
the sketch shows the arrival of ST. NICHOLAS in a household of ancient Egypt. The young artist is evidently
familiar with the Aztec pictures by Mr. J. G. Francis, which have appeared from time to time in ST. NICHOLAS.

9 rWoou h
^ ^ 'B-^'^SfV- -- __ s






THE RIDDLE-BOX.


ANSWERS TO PUZZLES IN THE FEBRUARY NUMBER.
DIAGONALS. Across: I. Sales. 2. Tares. 3. Drama. PRIMAL ACROSTIC. Valentine. I. Ventilator. 2. At-
4. Stubs. 5. Steam. tenuated. 3. Languisher. 4. Enigmatist. 5. Necromancy.
WORD-SQUARE. I. Madcap. 2. Amerce. 3. Device. 6. Tinctorial. 7. Imposthume. 8. Nucleiform. 9. Em-
4. Crinel. 5. Accede. 6. Peeled. piricism.
EASY ZIGZAG. Diophantus. Cross-words: I. Dark. CROSS-woRD ENIGMA. The Tale of a Pony.
2. File. 3. Drop. 4. Chop. 5. Ache. 6. Calm. ABSENT VOWELS. Candlemas. I. Lucky men need
7. Near. 8. Stab. 9. Shun. Io. Mass. no counsel. 2. All is soon ready in an orderly house.
DOUBLE ACROSTIC. Primals, Priam; finals, Salad. 3. Many hands make light work. 4. Where the hedge
Cross-words: I. Princes. 2. Regalia. 3. Initial. 4. Am- is lowest men commonly leap over. 5. That is a wise
phora. 5. Mermaid. delay which makes the road safe. 6. Honors set off
WORD-BUILDING. I. I, it, tie, bite, tribe, bestir, blis- merit; as dress, handsome persons. 7. Strain at a gnat
ter, bristles. II. I, in, din, dine, fiend, define, refined, and swallow a camel. 8. Two of a trade seldom agree.
befriend. III. A, am, mat, team, steam, master, mat- 9. Anger and haste hinder good counsel.
ters, mattress, teamsters, smatterers. IV. O, on, one, PROTEAN RHOMBOID. Across: I. Leper. 2. Miles.
note, stone, honest, hornets, shortens. 3. Toped. 4. Selah. 5. Laban.
To OUR PUZZLERS : Answers, to be acknowledged in the magazine, must be received not later than the 15th
of each month, and should be addressed to ST. NICHOLAS "Riddle-box," care of THE CENTURY CO., 33 East
Seventeenth St., New York City.
ANSWERS TO ALL THE PUZZLES IN THE DECEMBER NUMBER were received, before December 15th, from
Maude E. Palmer-Louise Ingham Adams-" M., Aunt M., and S."- Paul Reese-A. L. W. L.-K. G. S.-
J. R. Davis--Jo and I Aunt Kate, Mamma, and James P. R.- Maxie and Jackspar M. B. Head-J. B.
Swann-Clara B. Orwig- May Dunning Howard K. Hill- Pearl F. Stevens- Nellie and Reggie Lillian
Thorpe- Helen C. McCleary-" The Wise Five "- Emily and Annie Dembitz and Kaiser "- Miss Flint."
ANSWERS TO PUZZLES IN THE DECEMBER NUMBER were received, before December I5th, from B. and
W., 2-H. M. Rogers, I A. W. and A. P. C. Ashhurst, 4- M. Pattillo, I- May N., I Arthur B. Law-
Tence, 5 Lady Betty, 2 -Jennie and Edith, I -Thomas Doane Perry, I -Lillie Anthony, I -" Sir Roger de
,Coverley," I -" Pug," I Grace Cleghorn, 2- George A. Miller, Jr., 5--Emma Sydney, 6--Earl Frothing-
ham, 6 C. L. W., 2 -Eric M. Crickart, I--Helen Schussler, I Harmon S., I S. and L. F., I Eleanor
Hurd, 2 Effie K. Talboys, 6-Jack F. Babcock, I J. R. Williamson, 2 Elaine S., I Damon and Pythias, 4-
John W. Frothingham, Jr., 3-X. X., 3-"Infantry," 5--Pauline and Honora, I-R. Jackson, I-Nellie L.
Howes, 5 M. D. and C. M., 5 -Nagrom, 2-" S. S.," 5 Kate Guthrie, 3 Tracy R. Kelley, I- Maud T., 4.


A STAR PUZZLE.

19.


8.


9.
a


"The Hunchback of N6tre Dame"; from 23 to 5, a
famous Dutch painter; from 24 to 6, a musical term mean-
ing "with a restrained voice or moderate force "; from
19 to 13, ballots; from 19 to 14, a servant; from 20 to 14,
apparent; from 20 to 15, an Italian town near the mouth
of the Tiber; from 21 to 15, the Latin word for earth; from
21 to 16, a distinguishing feature; from 22 to 16, upright;
from 22 to 17, a select body; from 23 to 17, a course;
20. from 23 to 18, leases; from 24 to 18, sends by water;
from 24 to 13, buildings where goods are sold by retail;
S from 13 to 14 (five letters), brief; from 14 to 15, the mod-
S ern name for Thebes in Greece; from 15 to 16, having
one end raised; from 16 to 17, a convulsion; from 17 to
18, noblemen; from 18 to 13, discharges of a gun; from
13 to 7, certain; from 14 to 8, unerring; from 15 to 9, the
2 5s. agave; from 16 to Io, neat; from 17 to II, not difficult;
from 18 to 12, a support.


16. 21.


22.

FROM I to 6, our country's highest assembly; from 13
-to IS, what this country consists of; from 19 to 24 are
those who have a voice in the government; from 19 to I,
triumphs; from 20 to 2 is what the law demands; from
:21 to 3, a military expert; from 22 to 4, a character in


CENTRAL ACROSTIC.

EACH of the words described contains an odd number
of letters. When all have been rightly guessed the
eight central letters will spell the name of the Roman
emperor who owned the horse Incitatus.
CROSS-WORDS: I. A famous battle won by Henry V. of
England. 2. The name of a queen of England who died
at the age of seventy. 3. A Roman emperor who was
slain in 69 A. D. 4. A celebrated friend and general of
Augustus Caesar. 5. The inhabitants of a famous city
which, for a long time, was a rival of Rome. 6. A name
borne by many kings of France. 7. A name borne by
four kings of England. 8. The wife of Louis VII. of
France, and afterward the wife of Henry II. of England.
ISABEL V. M. L.


.24.


* 13.



l.


6


.28* 12.


.23. iv.






THE RIDDLE-BOX.


HOUR-GLASS.

THE central letters, reading downward, will spell the
name of a famous Englishman.
CROSS-WORDS: I. Contests. 2. A wreath of flowers.
3. Mild. 4. A lyric poem. 5. In hour-glass. 6. A
tribe of Indians. 7. Fourteen pounds. 8. Angles.
9. In direct terms.
"BUFFALO BILL AND HAMLET."

CONNECTED WORD-SQUARES.
I


2
3.
3 .


*. 4

I. I. Sudden transition. 2. An English nobleman.
3. A river of Italy. 4. To toil.
II. I. A Persian monarch. 2. An illustrious person.
3. Surface. 4. White with age.
From I to 2, real estate; from 3 to 4, a prophet;
from I to 4, a famous painter who was born March 7,
less than one hundred years ago. DYCIE.

A PREFIX PUZZLE.


behalf of another. II. A fortified city of France, about
seventy-five miles from Lyons. 12. A legal name for
the defendant in an appeal. 13. Makes right.
Each of the words described, excepting the fifth, con-
tains eight letters. When rightly guessed and placed one
below the other, in the order here given, the fourth row
of letters will spell the name of a famous American
statesman who died in the month of March; the fifth row
will spell the name of a famous English writer who died
in March, and who, for some time, was the the friend of
Thomas Gray, the poet. F. s. F.
ANTONYMS.

I. BEHEAD the opposite of white, and leave the oppo-
site of unfitted. 2. Behead the opposite of to dislike,
and leave the opposite of to speak calmly. 3. Behead
the opposite of having no opinion, and leave the opposite
of to thrive. 4. Behead the opposite of to neglect, and
leave the opposite of dry weather. 5. Behead the oppo-
site of to hold aloft, and leave the opposite of to speak
mildly.
The beheaded letters will spell the name of a famous
writer. "PRINCESS."

A PYRAMID.


THE same noun may be used as a prefix to each of the
eleven objects here shown. What is the prefix ?

DOUBLE CENTRAL ACROSTIC.

CROSS-WORDS: I. Those who vouch. 2. Not narrow-
minded. 3. Communicated. 4. A piece of music in
triple time. 5. A kind of quartz, named from a town in
Asia Minor, opposite to Byzantium. 6. Concurring.
7. To exceed in swelling. 8. Searches thoroughly.
9. To move up and down. o1. One who contends in


ACROSS: I. A letter from Denmark. 2. A name some-
times given to Henry VIII. 3. Sharpened. 4. The work
of a mason. 3. Overthrown.
DOWNWARD: I. A letter from Denmark. 2. A pro-
noun. 3. A verb. 4. A great number. 5. Land be-
longing to a nobleman. 6. A kind of cloth. 7. Arid.
8. A pronoun. 9. A letter from Denmark.
"ANN O'DYNE."

CHARADE.

MY first may spring from a gray goose wing;
A king is but my second,
Of the works of men my third has been
The bravest object reckoned.
And without myfirst my whole would be
A thing unknown to you and to me.
MARY D. NAUMAN.
CUBE.

I 2


6


3 ......... 4


7 .
FROM I to 2, a joker; from 2 to 4, a river famous in
olden times; from I to 3, a noble lady; from 3 to 4, en-
deavored; from 5 to 6, tiresome; from 6 to 8, certain
Dutch ships; from 5 to 7, dances; from 7 to 8, allows;
from I to 5, part of a ship; from 2 to 6, a circle; from
4 to 8, sleeps; from 3 to 7, transgressions.
ANNA G. G.


THE DE VINNE PRESS, NEW YORK.


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