Front Cover
 Front Matter
 The soldiering of Beniah Stidh...
 The bloom of the Christmas...
 Holly-berry and mistletoe: A Christmas...
 Polly Oliver's problem
 Inanimate things animated
 Mark Twain's big namesake
 A hanging garden
 Molly Ryan's christmas eve
 Just for fun
 Harold and the railway signals
 From the postboy to the fast...
 A race with an avalanche
 The white cave
 In a ring of fire
 The Persian Columbus
 The Persian Columbus
 A year with Dolly
 How Hinkadepenk ground the...
 The letter-box
 The riddle-box
 Back Matter
 Back Cover

Title: St. Nicholas
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00065513/00263
 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
Subject: Children's literature -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
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: VID00263
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
    Front Matter
        Page 81
        Page 82
    The soldiering of Beniah Stidham
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
    The bloom of the Christmas tree
        Page 89
    Holly-berry and mistletoe: A Christmas romance of 1492
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
    Polly Oliver's problem
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
    Inanimate things animated
        Page 106
        Page 107
    Mark Twain's big namesake
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
    A hanging garden
        Page 114
    Molly Ryan's christmas eve
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
    Just for fun
        Page 120
        Page 121
    Harold and the railway signals
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
    From the postboy to the fast mail
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
    A race with an avalanche
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
    The white cave
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
    In a ring of fire
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
    The Persian Columbus
        Page 146
        Page 147
    The Persian Columbus
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
    A year with Dolly
        Page 151
    How Hinkadepenk ground the corn
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
    The letter-box
        Page 158
    The riddle-box
        Page 159
        Page 160
    Back Matter
        Page 161
    Back Cover
        Page 162
        Page 163
Full Text







No. 2.



STT HENyoulookatavery with a rolling collar and with buttons that
old man, it seems hard look like brass. The cuffs of his long, wrinkled
to imagine that he was coat-sleeves come down almost to the knotted
ever once a boy, full of knuckles, and one skinny hand rests upon the
sport and mischief like the top of a hooked cane. It does not seem possi-
boys whom we know nowadays. ble that he could ever have been a boy; but he
There is a daguerreotype of Beniah Stidham was-though it was away back in the time of
that was taken about the year 1850. It is the the Revolutionary War.
picture of a very, very old man, with a bald, He was about fifteen years old at the time of
bony forehead, and a face full of wrinkles and the battle of Brandywine-that was in the year
furrows. His lips are sucked in between his 1777. He was then an apprentice in Mr. Con-
toothless gums, and his nose is hooked down as nelly's cooper-shops near Brandywine. His
though to meet his lean chin beneath. father, Amos Stidham, kept a tin-store, and
In the picture he wears a swallow-tailed coat sometimes peddled tinware and buckets down
Copyright, 1892, by THE CENTURY CO. All rights reserved.


in the lower counties and up through Penn-
sylvania. At that time Beniah was a big, awk-
ward, loose-jointed, over-grown lad; he shot up
like a weed, and his clothes were always too
small for him. His hands stuck far out from
his sleeves.
They were
splay and red,
and they were
big like his
feet. He stut-
tered when he
talked, and
laughed at '- o
him for it.
Most people i -
thought that k -
he was slack- -
witted, but he
was not; he
was only very
shy and timid. Sometimes he himself felt that
he had as good sense as anybody if he only had
a chance to show it.
These things happened in Delaware, which
in those days was almost like a part of Penn-
There was a great deal of excitement in Wil-
mington at the time of the beginning of the
trouble in Boston, the fight at Lexington, and
the battle at Bunker Hill. There were enlisted
for the war more than twenty young, fellows
from Wilmington and Brandywine Hundred;
they used to drill every evening in a field at
the foot of Quaker Hill, where the Meeting-
house stood and not far from the William Penn
Inn. A good many people -especially the
boys-used to go in the evening to see them
drill. It seemed to Beniah that if he could
only go for a soldier he might stand a great
deal better chance of getting along than he
had in Wilmington, where every one laughed
at him and seemed to think that he was lacking
in wits.
He had it in his mind a great many times to
speak to his father about going for a soldier, but
he could not quite find courage to do so, for he
felt almost sure that he would be laughed at.
One night he did manage to speak of it, and

when he did, it was just as he thought it would
be. It was just after supper, and they still sat at
table, in the kitchen. He was nervous, and when
he began speaking he stuttered more than usual.
"I wo-wo-wo-wo-wish you'd 1-let me go fer
a sis-sis-sis-
sis-sis- sis- sol-
dier, Father,"
said he.
His sister
Debby burst
out laughing.
"A sis-sis-sis-
sis-soldier i "
she mocked.
S "A what! "
said Beniah's
father. "You a
soldier? You
would make a
pretty soldier,
now,would n't
you ? Why, you would n't be able to say Who
goes there?' fer stutterin'!" and then Debby
laughed again, and when she saw that it made
Beniah angry, she laughed still more.
So Beniah did not go soldiering that time.

After the battle of Brandywine, Lord Howe's
fleet of war-ships came up into the Delaware
from the Chesapeake Bay, and everybody was
anxious and troubled, for there was talk that
the enemy would bombard the town. You
could see the fleet coming up the bay from the
hills back of the town-the sails seemed to
cover the water all over; that was in the after-
noon, just before supper. That evening a good
many people left town, and others sent their
china and silver up into the country for safe
After supper the bellman went through the
streets calling a meeting at the Town-hall.
Captain Stapler was at home at that time and
spoke to the people. He told them that there
was no danger of the fleet bombarding the
town, for the river was two miles away, and
the cannon could not carry that far. He
showed them that the only way that the enemy
could approach the town was up the Christiana
River, and that if the citizens would build a


redoubt at the head of the marsh the place
would be perfectly defended.
The people found a good deal of comfort
in what he said; but the next morning the
"Roebuck" and "Liverpool" ships of war were
seen to be lying, with their tenders and two
transports, opposite the town; and once more all
the talk was that they were going to bombard.
There was a great deal said that morning at
the cooper-shops about all this. Some opined
that the ships were certainly going to bombard,
but others held that what they would do would
be to send a regiment of Hessians up the creek
to burn down the town.
During the morning, old Billy Jester came up
from Christiana village, and said that the towns-
people were building a mud fort down at the
Rocks below the Old Swedes' Church, and that
they expected two cannon and some soldiers to
come down from Fort Mifflin in the afternoon.
This was a great comfort to
T everybody, for the time.
About eleven o'clock
in the morning the
enemy suddenly
began firing.
\ t : Boom! the
sudden startling
Noise sounded
dull and heavy,
r like the falling
,*"'t of some great
weight; the win-
dows rattled-boom!-boom! -boom! -and
then again, after a little pause,-boom!--
boom! There was a little while, a few seconds
of breathless listening, and then Tom Pierson,
the foreman of the shop, shouted:
By gum they're bombarding the town!"
Then he dropped his adze, and ran out of the
door without waiting to take his hat. As he
ran, there sounded again the same dull, heavy
report-boom! boom!
There was no more work in the cooper-shops
that day. Beniah ran all the way home. His
father was just then away in the lower coun-
ties, and Beniah did not know what was going
to happen to Debby and his mother. Maybe
he would find the house all knocked to pieces
with cannon-balls. Boom! boom! sounded

the cannon again, and Beniah ran faster and
faster, his mouth all dry and clammy with fear
and excitement. The streets were full of peo-
ple hurrying toward the hills. When he got
home he found that no harm had happened,
but the house was shut and all the doors locked.
He met Mrs. Frist, and she told him that his
mother and Debby had gone up to Quaker Hill.
He found them there a little while later, but
by that time the war-ships had stopped firing,
and after a while everybody went back home.
In the afternoon it was known that they had
not been firing at the town at all, but at some
people who had gone down on the neck to look
at them, and whom, no doubt, they took to be
militia or something of the kind.
Just before supper it was reported that one
of Jonas Stidham's cows had been killed by
a cannon-ball. Jonas Stidham was Beniah's
uncle, and in the evening he went over to look
at the cow. He met several others going on
the same errand-two men and three or four
boys. There was quite a crowd gathered about
the place. The cow lay on its side, with its
neck stretched out. There was a great hole in
its side, made by the cannon-ball, and there
was blood upon the ground. It looked very
dreadful, and seemed to bring the terrors of
war very near; and everybody stood about and
talked in low voices.
After he had seen the dead cow, Beniah
went down to where they were building the
mud fort. They were just putting the cannon
into place, and Captain Stapler was drilling a
company of young men of the town who had
enlisted for its defense. Beniah
+ wished that he was




one of them. After the drill was over, Captain
Stapler came up to him and said:
Don't you want to enlist, Beniah ?"
Beniah would not have dared to enlist if

his father had been at home, but his father
was away, and he signed his name to the roll-
That was the way that he came to go soldier-

.That night Beniah did not go home, for he
had to stay with the others who had enlisted.
They were quartered at the barn just back of
the mud fort. But he sent word by Jimmy
Rogers that he was not coming home, because
he had enlisted in Captain Stapler's company.
However, Captain Stapler let him go home
the next morning for a little while. He found
that all the boys knew that he had enlisted,
and that he was great among them. He had
to tell each one he met all about the matter.
They all went along with him-fifteen
or twenty of them--and waited
in the street outside while he was
talking with his family within. His
mother had gone out, but his sister
Debby was in the kitchen.
Oh, but you '11 catch it when
daddy comes home!" said she.
Beniah pretended not to pay
any attention to her.
"When is he coming home ?"
said he, after a while.
"I don't know, but, mark my
words, you '11 catch it when he does
come," said Debby.

That night they set pickets along the edge
of the marsh, and then Beniah really began to
soldier. He took his turn at standing guard
about nine o'clock. There was no wind, but
the night was very raw and chill. At first
Beniah rather liked the excitement of it, but by
and by he began to get very cold. He remem-
bered his father's overcoat that hung back of
the door in the entry, and he wished he had
brought it with him from home; but it was too
late to wish for that now. And then it was
very lonesome and silent in the darkness of the
night. A mist hung all over the marsh, and in
the still air the voices of the men who were
working upon the redoubt by lantern-light, and
of the volunteers at their quarters in the barn
where they had kindled a fire, sounded with
perfect clearness and distinctness in the still-
ness., The tide was coming in, and the water
gurgled and rippled in the ditches, where the
reeds stood stark and stiff in the gloom. The
reed-birds had not yet flown south, and their
sleepy "cheep, cheeping" sounded incessantly
through the darkness.
The moon was about rising, and the sky, to
the east, was lit with a milky paleness. Toward
it the marsh stretched away into the distance,
the thin tops of the nearer reeds just showing
above the white mysterious veil of mist that
covered the water. It was all very strange and
lonesome, and when Beniah thought of home
and how nice it would be to be in his warm
bed, he could not help wishing that he had not
enlisted. And then he certainly would "catch
it" when his father came home, as Debby had
said he would. It was not a pleasant prospect.
By and by the moon rose, and
at the same time a breeze sprang
up. It grew colder than. ever, and
presently the water began to splash
and dash against the river-bank be-
yond. The veil of mist disap-
peared, and the water darkled and
nu. flashed with broken shadows and
sparks of light. Beniah's fingers
holding the musket felt numb and
dead. He wondered how much
longer he would have to stay on
S guard; he felt as though he had
been there a long time already.


He crouched down under the lee of the river-
bank and in the corner of a fence which stood
there to keep the cows off of the marsh.
He had been there maybe five minutes, and
was growing very sleepy with the cold, when he
suddenly heard a sharp sound, and instantly
started wide awake. It was the sound as of an
oar striking against the side of a boat. There
was something very strange in the sharp rap
ringing through the stillness, and whoever had
made it had evidently not intended to do so,
for the after stillness was unbroken.
Beniah crouched in the fence-corner, listening
breathlessly, intensely. He had forgotten all
about being cold and sleepy and miserable.
He felt that his heart was beating and leap-
ing unevenly, and his breath came quickly, as
though he had been running. Was the enemy
coming? What should he do ?
He did not move; he only crouched there,
trying to hold his breath, and trying to still the
beating of his heart with his elbow pressed
against his ribs. He was afraid that if there
was another sound he might miss hearing it
because of his labored breathing and the pulses
humming in his ears. He gripped his musket
with straining fingers.
There was a pause of perfect stillness. Then
suddenly he heard a faint splash as though
some one had stepped incautiously into the
water. Again there was stillness. Then some-
thing moved in the reeds-maybe it was a
regiment of Hessians! Beniah crouched lower,
and'poked his musket through the bars of the
fence. What would happen next? He won-
dered if it was all real-if the enemy was ac-
tually coming.
Suddenly the reeds stirred again. Beniah
crouched down still lower. Then he saw some-
thing slowly rise above the edge of the river-
bank, sharp-cut and black against the milky
sky. It was the head of a man, and it was
surmounted by a tall conical cap-it was the
sort of a cap that the British soldiers wore. As
Beniah gazed, it seemed to him as though he
had now stopped breathing altogether. The
head remained there motionless for a while, as
though listening; then the body that belonged
to it slowly rose as though from the earth, and
stood, from the waist up black against the sky.

Beniah tried to say, "Who goes there ?" and
then he found that what his father had said was
true; he could not say the words for stutter-
ing. He was so excited that he could not utter
a sound; he would have to shoot without say-
ing, "Who goes there ?" There was nothing
else to do. He aimed his eye along the barrel
of his musket, but it was so dark that he could
not see the sights of the gun very well. Should
he shoot ? He hesitated for an intense second
or two-then came a blinding flash of resolve.
He drew the trigger.
For a moment he was deafened and bewil-
dered by the report and the blinding flash of
light. Then the cloud of pungent gunpowder-
smoke drifted away, and his senses came back
to him. The head and body were gone from
against the sky.
Beniah sprang to his feet and flew back to-
ward the mud fort, yelling he knew not what.
It seemed as though the whole night was peo-
pled with enemies. But nobody followed him.
Suddenly he stopped in his flight, and stood
again listening. Were the
British following

him? No, they were not. He heard alarmed
voices from the fort, and the shouting of the
pickets. A strange impulse seized him that he
could not resist: he felt that he must go back
and see what he had shot. He turned and
crept slowly back, step by step, pausing now
and then, and listening intently. By and by he
came to where the figure had stood, and, cran-
ing his neck, peeped cautiously over the river-


bank. The moon shone bright on the rippling
water in a little open place in the reeds. There
was something black lying in the water, and as
Beniah continued looking at it, he saw it move
with a wallowing splash. Then he ran away
shouting and yelling.

Captain Stapler thought that an attack would
surely be made, but it was not; and, after a
while, he ordered a company from the mud
fort out along the river-bank, to see who it was
that Beniah had shot. They took a lantern
along with them, and Beniah went ahead to
show them where it was.
Yonder 's the place," said he; "and I
fu-fired my gi-gi-gi-gi-gun from the fa-fa-fence,
ja-just here."
Captain Stapler peered down among the
reeds. "By gum!" said he, "he 's shot some-
thing, sure
He went
down the
bank; then
he stooped
over, and
soon lifted
that lay in
the water.
"Come down here, two or three of you!"
called out Captain Stapler. "Beniah 's actually
shot a man, as sure as life !"
A number of the men scrambled down the
bank; they lifted the black figure; it groaned
again as they did so. They carried it up and
laid it down upon the top of the bank. The
clothes were very muddy and wet, but the light
of the lantern twinkled here and there upon
the buttons and braid of a uniform. Captain
Stapler bent over the wounded man. By gra-
cious!" said he, "it 's a Hessian-like enough
he 's a spy." Beniah saw that the blood was
running over one side of the wet uniform, and
he was filled with a sort of terrible triumph.
They carried the wounded man to the barn,
and Dr. Taylor came and looked at him. The

wound was in the neck, and it was not espe-
cially dangerous. No doubt the man had been
stunned by the ball when it struck him.
The Hessian was a young man. Sprec/en
sie Deutsch 7" asked he, but nobody under-
stood him.

The next morning Beniah's father came
home. He did not stop to ungear the horse,
but drove straight down to the mud fort in his
tinware cart. He was very angry.
"What 're you doing here, anyhow?" said
he to Beniah; and he caught him by the collar
and shook him till Beniah's hat slipped down
over one eye. "What 're you doin' here, any-
how-killin' and shooting' and murtherin' folks?
You come home with me, Beniah-you come
home with me!" and he shook him again.
He can't go," said Captain Stapler. "You
can't take
him, Am-
os. He's
and he 's
signed his
name up-
I don't
care a rap
What he 's
"He hain't going' to stay here shooting' folks.
He 's got to come home along with me, he has."
And Beniah went.
Nobody knows what happened after he got
home, and Beniah did not tell; but next day he
went back to work at the cooper-shops again.
All the boys seemed glad to see him, and
wanted to know just how he shot the Hessian.
A good many people visited the wounded
Hessian down in the barn the day he had been
shot. Among others came Dutch Charlie,"
the cobbler. He could understand what the
Hessian said. He told Captain Stapler that
the man was not a spy, but a deserter from the
transport-ship in the river. It seemed almost
a pity that the man had not been a spy; but,
after all, it did not make any great difference in


the way people looked on what Beniah Stid-
ham had done; for the fact remained that he
was a Hessian. And nobody thought of laugh-
ing at Beniah, even when he stuttered in tell-
ing how he shot him.
After a while the Hessian got well, and then
he started a store in Philadelphia. He did well,


and made money, and the queerest part of the
whole business was that he married Debby
Stidham-in spite of its having been Beniah
who shot him in the neck.
This is the story of Beniah Stidham's sol-
diering. It lasted only two nights and a day,
but he got a great deal of glory by it.




AT night we planted the Christmas tree
In the pretty home, all secretly;
All secretly, though merry of heart,
With many a whisper, many a start.
(For children who 'd scorn to make believe
May not sleep soundly on Christmas Eve.)

And then the tree began to bloom,
Filling with beauty the conscious room.
The branches curved in a perfect poise,
Laden with wonders that men call "toys,"
Blooming and ripening (and still no noise),
Until we merry folk stole away
To rest and dream till dawn of day.

In the morning the world was a girl and a boy,
The universe only their shouts of joy,
Till every branch and bough had bent
To yield the treasure the Christ-child sent.
And then-and then-the children flew
Into our arms, as children do,
And whispered, over and over again,
That oldest, newest, sweetest refrain,
"I love you! I love you! Yes, I love youi!"
And hugged and scrambled, as children do.
And we said in our hearts, all secretly:
" This is the bloom of the Christmas tree! "

t$Hoily Berry


Chr ifmas



"Lost! Lost! Lost! Ah, woeis me!
Sir Charles's home will vacant be."
So dirged Holly-berry, his twinkling eyes
upon his master, who sat like a man of stone,
in a high-backed chair near a table, on which
was a side of venison, untasted, a mug of
home-brew, untouched.
"Get you to Limbo, you brainless jester!"
roared Sir Charles Charlock, starting up in his
chair at the sound of Hollyberry's piping voice,
and bringing down his fist upon the table with
a bang that set the dishes to dancing, and the
glasses into a tinkling shiver. "You are the
maddest madcap I have e'er beheld; let me
not see you again this night!"

Holly-berry drew down one point of his
comical cap till it touched his chin, winked
his eye merrily at Sir Charles Charlock, which
was fifteenth century for "That 's all right,"
turned a somersault down the length of the
room toward the doorway, through which he
disappeared with a cart-wheel, topped off with
a hand-spring, that took the scarlet-dressed,
white polka-dotted little jester off the scene
with pyrotechnic effect.
He was well contented. He had roused his
loved master out of his fit of dense gloom to
utter the first words he had spoken that day.
A large staghound, which had been resting
his head on his fore paws before the roaring
logs in the fireplace, slowly got up from his
sleeping-place, and, with a low whine, crept to
Sir Charlock, and, laying his nose on his master's


knee, looked up into his gloomy face with grief-
speaking eyes.
"Away with you also!" cried Sir Charles.
"'T is worse than the jester's dirging to have
your eyes so sorrowingly hold me to account";
and at a threat of his high-booted foot, the
staghound slunk away through the hall door.
"Mind it not," said Holly-berry, stroking
the hound's long ears. "'T is far better he
should be holding high carnival with his toes,
than to sit there as sodden as unyeasted bread.
Perchance, Mistress Bertha, you may bring
him to his feet in a better spirit, if you but
try it."
Bertha shrank. She was a winsome Saxon
maid, who but two months before had so
roused her father's wrath by confessing her
attachment to Sir Egbert Traymore of Twin
Towers, that she felt as if offering herself for
slaughter, if she approached the angry father
now; still, she went.
Father," she said, entering the room through
a door to which his back was turned, and
going toward him with halting step, Ethelred
may yet be found; this is but the third day of
his absence. Eat, and then can you better
think where next to search for him."
Silly maid, begone with your prating. Is it
not you who first brought trouble upon us, with
your friend Egbert Traymore ? As if a feud,
mellowing three hundred years twixtt Tray-
mores and Charlocks, were not enough to
silence you whenever you would say 'Egbert'!
What boots it, if one has an enmity for ten
generations and keeps not to it? Begone, with
your soft words, your prattling ways and baby
face." And, rising, Sir Charles frowned upon
her so sternly that in her haste to leave him,
she stumbled along the floor, swayed, then
regained herself, and disappeared through the
door as quickly as had either Holly-berry or
the hound.
"'T is no use! she exclaimed, and she ran
up-stairs weeping, while her father threw him-
self upon a deerskin-covered bench, and lay
perfectly still.
"By my cap and bells, that is bad!" said
Holly-berry, peering in through the door-crack,
troubled by the complete silence; while the
staghound wedged the door still further open

with his long nose, and going into the room,
lay so quietly down upon the floor beside the
bench that Sir Charles did not know he was
"By his spear and cross-bow! said Holly-
berry to himself, "this is worse than ever, to see
him there lying like that! I must stir my wits,
to see what can be done," and he laid his finger
against his nose, in deep reflection, just as the
scuffling of heavy boots, the clanking of long
swords, and the smoking of flambeaux, in the
broad oak hall, announced the arrival of the
last searching-party; but they had returned as
fruitlessly as they had come in three times in
the last three days.
"'T is no use," they said dejectedly; "lad
Ethelred, alive or dead, is not to be found
within thirty miles of Charlock Castle."
The staghound raised his head and howled
"Zounds! cried Sir Charles Charlock, "I
have a mind to hang some witch to-morrow,-
for surely this mystery is of such brewing."
And this was upon the nineteenth day of
December, 1492, when Henry VII. of England
wore a white and red rose in his buttonhole,
and watched with pride the progress of his son,
baby Henry VIII., in walking and talking;
when Charles VIII. of France was crossing
swords with Germany, because he had not
married to its satisfaction; and when Ferdinand
and Isabella sat upon the throne of Spain, and
wondered if Columbus would return, and if his
"new world" were worth the queen's necklace
and diamonds.

Ah! Dame Mistletoe, where, tell me where,
Can be found our young master, Lord Charlock's heir.
HOLLY-BERRY drew farther back into the cor-
ner. He did not wish to be seen when so
deeply reflecting, because for Holly-berry to be
seen anywhere was for him to be expected to
go off in a whir of acrobatics, or to be placed
on a bench, or a table, or some other high
point, and asked for a joke, a riddle, or a bit
of fun from his busy brain.
Yet Holly-berry could be sober and in ear-
nest, as he was this evening; for his good little
heart, grieving for the sorrow in the household


was helping his bright little brains to think-to Point fifth was the most troublesome. It was
think hard. a hard knot, he told himself, and he clinched
He laid the five points of the case, upon the his wits upon it, for fifteen minutes-a half-
fingers of his left hand. The first point, which hour, until, indeed, the searching-party had dis-

. ,. .. ... -. ..- -
* .- .. .

'. S. .-''1 .


he tried to fix upon his thumb, was that Ethel-
red Charlock, aged nine years, only son and
heir of Sir Charles Charlock, the pride of his
father's heart, the light of his mother's eyes,
the delight of his sister's life, and the pet of
the household, was lost.
The second point, and he laid the dexter
index finger upon the sinister index finger em-
phatically, was, that Ethelred must be found.
Point third was, how to find him.
Point fourth was, to get about it at once.
Point fifth was, how to get about it at once.

banded and retired, leaving him alone in the
broad hall. Then the idea came. He sprang
nimbly to his feet.
I will go and ask Mistletoe what to do,"
he said. And throwing a cloak over his shoul-
ders, he stole softly out into the lonely, cold,
moonlit night. It was a white night, too, for
a snow had fallen during the day, and lay like
royal ermine upon the turrets and towers of
Charlock Castle, like a ruching of swan's-down
upon the square-cut battlements, the garden-
hedges, and the limbs of the trees.


The moon, but a crescent, peered through
the tops of the trees, decorating the white
snow with shadow-etchings of the branches,
the bushes, and the dense evergreens.
Holly-berry whistled under his breath at the
weird beauty of the night, omitted his cus-
tomary hand-spring, and, taking his cap in his
hand, for fear the jingle of the little bells
around its edge would draw attention to him,
ran briskly down the path to the road, down
the road half a mile to a dense grove in
which some deer were grazing upon the bush-
tops; then, turning abruptly to the east, he
hurried along under the trees, and at length,
quite out of breath, found himself nearing a
group of three fine large oaks, as alike as the
stars in Orion's belt, their branches draped with
mistletoe, intermingling affectionately in a rustic
bower above a little cottage. So small and ob-
scure was the cottage that it might readily have
been passed unnoticed by a wayfarer.
Still it showed no want
of actual comfort; it was
as tautly built as the sides
of a sailing vessel, the roof
was warmly thatched, while
both' firelight and candle-
light met the moonlight,
between the neat dimity
curtains looped back from
the one narrow window,
upon its front.
Holly-berry tapped gent-
ly upon the green-painted
door and called:
Halloo, Dame Mistle-
toe, are you within ? "
"Where else should I be,
Holly child ? she replied,
opening the door, "and come you in also.
Right glad am I to see you, and hear news
from the castle yonder."
Kicking his long, pointed shoes against the
door-sill, to remove every particle of snow from
them, Holly-berry entered and took a seat
upon the bench she placed for him before the
crackling fire.
"Where is your nimble tongue?" she asked,
vainly waiting for Holly-berry to speak first,
"and where the sprig of holly-berry you al-

way wear so gaily at your belt? I fear it
betokens ill luck to see you without it"; and
she took a seat opposite him.
It is ill luck, then, dear Dame Mistletoe,"
answered the little jester slowly. "You have
hit it at once. Our young Ethelred, of Char-
lock castle, has been lost, and though this be
the third day of his missing, not one word has
been learned of his whereabouts. His father is
daft with grief; his mother pining; his sister cry-
ing; and a sorry time is upon us all, up at the
castle. Therefore came I at once to you. Please
then, good ,, ,
DameMistle- ,
toe, tell me ,
if you cain,
what has ;g: 't
and where % e
can find him." 1

Mistletoe--- -
pushed back
her chair with
patience, and IN A BETTER SPIRIT, IF
set straight,
though needlessly, the high, steeple-crowned
head-dress which she wore indoors and out,
and looked hard at her small visitor.
She was an old woman, but wise and kindly.
By the lads and lassies of the region she was much


beloved, for she mended their disputes, stacked
hay with them upon the meadow, or raked the
field from sun-up to sun-down, as strong and
wiry as any lad near her, checkmating his jest-
ing with a pleasantry of her own, or giving him
a word of healing when his fingers bled from
awkward handling of the scythe. Time had for-


gotten to embed wrinkles in the waxy whiteness
of her complexion, and a silvery grayness in
her eyes and hair made the name Mistletoe,
which had befallen her, most fitting. Her nose
and chin hooked somewhat toward each other,
but this did not interfere with the sweet and
placid expression of her face.
"I am not a soothsayer, nor yet a witch," she
emphasized, "that I can tell what I do not
know. What wot I of the pretty lad, save that
he has not been this way for many a day, nor
is he in these woods?"
"That is but telling what we already know,"
responded Holly-berry. "Sir Charles and his
searchers found out two days agone that this
wood held no Ethelred for them. Come you,
good Mistletoe, put on your thinking-cap, and

help me to divine the cause of his taking-off in
this strange manner."
Mistletoe still looked hard at Holly-berry.
"What has become of those robber wights
called the Hardi-Hoods? she asked.
Sir Charles broke up their den and drove
them thence, as you know," answered Holly-
berry somewhat testily.
S "Went they willing-
Y ]ly ?" she questioned.
"In sooth, you ask
only what you know,"
replied Holly-berry.
Did you not hear them
call down a thousand
S maledictions on Sir
Charles's head, and
promise him a bitter
revenge for his treat-
ment of them?"
Where now are the
outlaw Hardi-Hoods ?"
she queried further, push-
ing her chair nearer the
fire as the wind rattled
the door-latch and whis-
tled down the chimney.
"Some say they are
Sfled to the Western Isles;
e others, that they have
snugly hid themselves in
the fastnesses of the
NG MASTER." north or east country;
but I am not a soothsayer, nor yet a witch"; and
he shrugged his shoulders in mild mockery, as
he spread his fingers to the fire. "What should
I know of them ? "
"Holly-berry," said Dame Mistletoe, seri-
ously, are your brains addled, or why ask you
me, 'Where is Ethelred'? The Hardi-Hoods'
revenge is this,-they have stolen your young
Holly-berry smote his head with both hands.
Plague take me to the Western Isles! he
cried; "of course 't is so, and 't is this that
so works upon Sir Charles, for he knows
not where they have betaken themselves, nor
whether or no they have already slain the
little lad. Now, tell me, kind Mistletoe; you
who 'are so learned in the past and present,


though no soothsayer, you who are so wise,
though no witch, tell me, I pray you, how to
find these robber Hardi-Hoods-my thoughts
run thick as mud."
In years gone by," she said, smiling kindly
at Holly-berry, as she noted his earnest face,
"the Charlock house was kind to me and mine.
To-day they are as good to me, building this
cottage here for me upon this land, exacting no
rental, and sending me many a load of wood,
cut to fit within my fire-jambs. To-morrow
morning I will start out in quest of these
Hardi-Hoods, and it is more than perchance I
shall fall upon a clue to guide us to their hid-
ing-place. Go you back to Sir Charlock, with
not one word of this to him, and in three days
bespeak me here again, at this hour."
Holly-berry sprang to his feet. Good Dame
Mistletoe !" he exclaimed, "you go not alone
on this search? Let me go too."

No," she said, shaking her head so emphat-
ically that the tall steeple-crown toppled to one
side. I may have reasons for my refusal you
wot not of, and 't will be your place to stay
at home, and mind that Sir Charlock brings
no further grief to pass through his high-tem-
pered sorrow."
"Kind Dame Mistletoe, I will obey you,"
said Holly-berry, doffing his cap and bowing
gallantly. I am off at once to do your bidding.
Let not the suspense last but three days, and
you have my best wishes for safety and success
in your undertaking."
With a final wave of his cap in farewell, the
little jester was out of sight in a star-twinkle,
Jack Frost pinching his cheeks to a rainbow red
and decking his doublet with a glitter of frost
spangles before he had run the long mile
which lay between Charlock castle and the
three oaks.

(To be continued.)


.; s

. '.. I. l




r .


~" ~~



Author of The Birds' Christmas Carol," "A Summer in a Canonj," etc.

[Begun in the November number.]
AILY as the sum-
i mer wore
away Mrs.
Oliver grew
o: oo more and more
o languid, until
gooo at length she
was forced to
ask a widowed
q' neighbor,Mrs.
Chadwick, to
come and take
the housekeeping cares until she should feel
stronger. But beef-tea and drives, and salt-
water bathing and tonics, seemed to do no
good, and at length there came a day when
she had not sufficient strength to sit up.
The sight of her mother actually in bed in
the daytime gave Polly a sensation as of a
cold hand clutching at her heart, and she ran
for Dr. Edgerton in an agony of fear. But
good Dr. George" (as he was always called,
because he began practice when his father, the
old doctor, was still living) came home with
her, cheered her by his hopeful view of the case,
and asked her to call at his office that afternoon
for some remedies.
After dinner was over, Polly kissed her sleep-
ing mother, laid a rose on her pillow for good-
by, and stole out of the room.
Polly's heart was heavy as she walked into
the office where the Doctor sat alone at his
Good-day, my dear i" he said cordially, as
he looked up, for she was one of his prime
favorites. "Bless my soul, how you do grow,
child! Why, you are almost a woman! "
VoL. XX.-7.

"I am quite a woman," said Polly, with a
choking sensation in her throat, and you have
something to say to me, Dr. George, or you
would n't have asked me to leave mama and
come here this stifling day; you would have
sent the medicine by your boy."
Dr. George put down his pen in mild amaze-
ment. You are a woman, in every sense of
the word, my dear! Bless my soul, how you
do hit it occasionally, you sprig of a girl!
Now, sit by that window, and we '11 talk:
What I wanted to say to you is this, Polly.
Your mother must have an entire change. Six
months ago I tried to send her to a rest-cure,
but she refused to go anywhere without you,
saying that you were her best tonic."
Two tears ran down Polly's cheeks.
"Tell me that again, please," she said softly,
looking out of the window.
"She said-if you will have the very words,
and all of them-that you were sun and stimu-
lant, fresh air, medicine, and nourishment, and
that she could not exist without those indispens-
ables, even in a rest-cure."
Polly's head went down on the window-sill
in a sudden passion of tears.
Hoity-toity that's a queer way of receiving
a compliment, young woman! "
She tried to smile through her April shower.
It makes me so happy, yet so unhappy, Dr.
George. Mama has been working her strength
away so many years, and I 've been too little to
know it, and too little to prevent it, and now
that I am grown up I am afraid it is too late! "
"Not too late, at all," said Dr. George,
cheerily; "only we must begin at once and
attend to the matter thoroughly. Your mother
has been in this southern climate too long, for
one thing; she needs a change of air and scene.
San Francisco will do, though it 's not what
I should choose. She must be taken entirely


away from her care, and from everything that
will remind her of it; and she must live quietly,
where she will not have to make a continual
effort to smile and talk to people three times
a day. Being agreeable, polite, and good-tem-
pered for fifteen years, without a single lapse,
will send anybody into a decline. You '11 never
go that way, my Polly! Now, excuse me, but
how much ready money have you laid away?"
"Three hundred and twelve dollars."
Whew !"
It is a good deal," said Polly, with modest
pride; and it would have been more yet if we
had not just painted the house."
'A good deal!' my poor lambkin !- I hoped
it was $1012 at least; but, however, you have
the house, and that is as good as money. The
house must be rented at once,- furniture, board-
ers, and all,--as it stands. It ought to bring $85
or $95 a month in these times, and you can
manage on that, with the $312 as a reserve."
"What if we should get to San Francisco
and the tenant should give up the house?"
asked Polly, with an absolutely new gleam of
caution and business in her eye.
Brava! Why do I attempt to advise such
a capable little person ? Well, in the first place,
there are such things as leases; and, in the
second place, if your tenant should move out
the agent must find you another in short order,
and you will live, meanwhile, on the reserve
fund. But, joking aside, there is very little risk.
It is going to be a great winter for Santa Bar-
bara, and your house is attractive, convenient,
and excellently located. If we can get your
affairs into such shape that your mother will
not be anxious, I hope, and think, that the
entire change and rest, together with the bra-
cing air, will work wonders. I shall give you a
letter to a physician, a friend of mine, and for-
tunately I shall come up once a month during
the winter to see an old patient who insists on
retaining me just from force of habit."
And in another year, Dr. George, I shall be
ready to take care of mama myself; and then

She shall sit on a cushion, and sew a fine seam,
And feast upon strawberries, sugar, and cream."

"Assuredly, my Polly, assuredly." The Doc-
tor was pacing up and down the office now,

hands in pockets, eyes on floor. "The world
is your oyster; open it, my dear, open it. By
the way" (with a sharp turn), "what do you
propose to open it with?"
"I don't know yet, but not with boarders,
Dr. George."
Tut, tut, child; must n't despise small
things !"
Such as Mr. Greenwood," said Polly, irre-
pressibly, "weight two hundred and ninety
pounds; and Mrs. Darling, height six feet one
inch; no, I '11 try not to."
"Well, if there 's a vocation it will call,' you
know, Polly. I 'd rather like you for an assis-
tant, to drive my horse and amuse my con-
valescents. Bless my soul! you 'd make a
superb nurse, except-"
Except what, sir ?"
"You're not in equilibrium yet, my child-if
you know what I mean. You are either up or
down-generally up. You bounce, so to speak.
Now, a nurse must n't bounce; she must be
poised, as it were, or suspended betwixt and
between, like Mahomet's coffin. But thank
Heaven for your high spirits, all the same!
They will tide you over many a hard place, and
the years will bring the yoke soon enough,
Polly," and here Dr. George passed behind
the girl's chair and put his two kind hands
on her shoulders-" Polly, can you be really
a woman? Can you put the little-girl days
bravely behind you?"
"I can, Dr. George." This in a very trem-
bling voice.
"Can you settle all these details for your
mother, and assume responsibilities? Can you
take her away, as if she were the child and
you the mother, all at once?"
I can !" This more firmly.
"Can you deny yourself for her, as she has
for you? Can you keep cheerful and sunny;
can you hide your fears, if there should be
cause for any in your own heart? Can you
be calm and strong, if-"
"No, no! gasped Polly, dropping her head
on the back of the chair and shivering like a
leaf--"no, no; don't talk about fears, Dr.
George. She will be better. She will be better
very soon. I could not live -"
"It is n't so easy to die, my child, with


plenty of, warm young blood running pell-mell
through your veins, and a sixteen-year-old heart
that beats like a chronometer."
"I could not bear life without mama, Dr.
"A human being, made in the image of God,
can bear anything, child; but I hope you won't
have to bear that sorrow for many a long year
yet. I will come in to-morrow and coax your
mother into a full assent to my plans; mean-
while, fly home with your medicines. There was

a time when you used to give my tonics at
night and my sleeping-draughts in the morning;
but I believe in you absolutely from this day."
Polly put her two slim hands in the kind
doctor's, and, ldoking up into his genial face

with her tearful eyes, said," Dear Dr. George,
you may believe in me-indeed, indeed you
may! "
Dr. George looked out of his office window
and mused as his eyes followed Polly up the
shaded walk under the pepper-trees.
"Oh! these young things, these young things,
how one's heart yearns over them! he sighed.
"There she goes, full tilt, notwithstanding the
heat; hat swinging in her hand instead of being
on her pretty head; her heart bursting with
fond schemes to keep
that precious mother
alive! It's a splen-
did nature, that girl's;
one that is in danger
of being wrecked by
its own impetuosity,
but one so full and
rich that it is capable
of bubbling over and
'~;i enriching all the dull
Sand sterile ones about
it. Now, if all the
money I can rake
and scrape need not
go to those languid,
boneless children of
my languid, boneless
sister-in-law, I could
put that brave little
girl on her feet. I
think she will be able
to do battle with the
world so long as she
has her mother for
a motive-power. The
question is, how will
she do it without ?"

DR. GEORGE found
Mrs. Oliver too ill to
be anything but reasonable. After a long talk
about her own condition and Polly's future, she
gave a somewhat tearful assent to all his plans
for their welfare, and agreed to make the change
when a suitable tenant was found for the house.

7~PY;; ~1-"7
Ti~%. .i-



So Polly eased the anxiety that gnawed at
her heart by incredible energy in the direction of
house-cleaning; superintending all sorts of scrub-
bings, polishings, and renovating of carpets with
the aid of an extra Chinaman, who was fresh
from his native rice-fields and stupid enough to
occupy any one's mind to the exclusion of other
Each boarder in turn was asked to make a
trip to the country on a certain day, and on his
return found his room in spotless order; while
all this time the tired mother lay quietly in her
bed, knowing little or nothing of her daughter's
superhuman efforts to be good." But a month
of rest worked wonders, and Mrs. Oliver finally
became so like her usual delicate but energetic
self that Polly almost forgot her fears, though
she remitted none of her nursing and fond but
rigid discipline.
At length something happened; and one
glorious Saturday morning in October Polly
saddled "Blanquita" (the white mare which
Bell Winship had left in Polly's care during her
European trip), and galloped over to the No-
bles' ranch in a breathless state of excitement.
Blanquita was happy too; for Polly had a
light hand on the rein and a light seat in the sad-
dle; she knew there would be a long rest at the
journey's end, and that too under a particularly
shady pepper-tree, so both horse and rider were
in a golden humor as they loped over the dusty
road, the blue Pacific on the one hand, and the
brown hills, thirsty for rain, on the other.
Polly tied Blanquita to the pepper-tree,
caught her habit in one hand, and ran up the
walnut-tree avenue to the Nobles' house. There
was no one in; but that was nothing unusual,
since a house is chiefly useful for sleeping pur-
poses in that lovely climate. No one on the
verandas, no one in the hammocks; finally she
came upon Margery and her mother at work in
their orange-tree sitting-room, Mrs. Noble with
her mending-basket, Margery painting as usual.
The orange-tree sitting-room was merely a
platform built under the trees, which in the
season of blossoms shed a heavy fragrance in
the warm air, and later on hung their branches
of golden fruit almost into your very lap.
"Here you are!" cried Polly, plunging
through the trees as she caught sight of Mar-

gery's pink dress. "You have n't any hats to
swing, so please give three rousing cheers-the
house is rented and a lease signed for a year! "
"Good news! exclaimed Mrs. Noble, put-
ting down her needle. "And who is the tenant? "
"Whom do you suppose? Mrs. Chadwick
herself! She has been getting on very nicely
with the housekeeping (part of the credit be-
longs to me, but no one would ever believe it),
and the boarders have been gradually taught
to spare mama and accustomed to her, so they
are tolerably content. Ah Foy also has agreed




to stay, and that makes matters still more serent,
as he is the best cook in Santa Barbara. Mrs.
Chadwick will pay eighty-five dollars a month.
Dr. George thinks we ought to get more, but
mama is so glad to have somebody whom she
knows, and so relieved to feel that there will be
no general breaking up of the 'sweet, sweet
home,' that she is glad to accept the eighty-five
dollars; and I am sure that we can live in
modest penury on that sum. Of course Mrs.
Chadwick may weary in well-doing; or she may
die; or she may even get married--though
that 's very unlikely, unless one -of the boarders



can't pay his board and wants to make it up to
her in some way. Heigho! I feel like a prin-
cess, like a capitalist, like a gilded society lady!"
sighed Polly, fanning herself with her hat.
And now you and your mother will come
to us for a week or two, as you promised, won't
you? asked Mrs. Noble. "That will give you
time to make your preparations comfortably."
Polly took a note from her pocket and handed
it to Mrs. Noble: Mrs. Oliver presents her
compliments to Mrs. Noble, and says in this
letter that we accept with pleasure Mrs. Noble's
kind invitation to visit her. Said letter was not
to be delivered in case Mrs. Noble omitted to
renew the invitation; but as all is right I don't
mind announcing that we are coming the day
after to-morrow."
"Oh, Polly, Polly! How am I ever to live
without you! sighed Margery. First Elsie,
then Bell, now you! "
"Live for your Art with a big A, Peggy,-
but it 's not forever. By and by, when you are
a successful artist and I am a successful some-
thing,-in short when we are both 'careering,'
which is my verb to express earning one's living
by the exercise of some splendid talent,-we
will career' together in some great metropolis.
Our mothers shall dress in Lyons velvet and
point-lace. Their delicate fingers, no longer
sullied by the vulgar dish-cloth and duster, shall
glitter with priceless gems, while you and I, the
humble authors of their greatness, will heap
dimes on dimes until we satisfy ambition."
Mrs. Noble smiled. "I hope your 'career,'
as you call it, will be one in which imagination
will be of use, Polly."
I don't really imagine all the imaginations
you imagine I imagine," said Polly, soberly,
as she gave Mrs. Noble's hand an affectionate
squeeze. "A good deal of it is 'whistling to
keep my courage up.' But everything looks
hopeful just now. Mama is so much better,
everybody is so kind, and-do you know, I
don't loathe the boarders half so much since we
have rented them with the house ?
"They grow in beauty side by side,
They fill our home with glee.

Now that I can look upon them as personal
property, part of our goods and chattels, they

have ceased to be disagreeable. Even Mr.
Greenwood-you remember him, Margery ? "
"The fat old man who calls you sprightly ? "
"The very same; but he 's done worse since.
To be called sprightly is bad enough, but yes-
terday he said that he should n't be surprised
if I married well-in-course -of-time "
(Nothing but italics would convey the biting
sarcasm of Polly's inflections, and no capitals in
a printer's case could picture her flashing eyes
or the vigor with which she prodded the earth
with her riding-whip.)
Neither should I," said Mrs. Noble, teas-
ingly, after a moment of silence.
Now, dearest Aunty Meg, don't take sides
with that odious man! If, in the distant years,
you ever see me on the point of marrying well,
just mention Mr. Greenwood's name to me, and
I '11 draw back even if I am walking up the
middle aisle!"
"Just to spite him; that would be sensible,"
said Margery.
You could n't be so calm if you had to sit
at the same table with him day after day. He
belongs at the second table by-by-every law
of his nature. But, as I was saying, now that
we have rented him to Mrs. Chadwick with the
rest of the furniture, and will have a percentage
on him just as we do on the piano (which is far
more valuable), I have been able to look at him
You ought to be glad that the boarders like
you," said Margery, reprovingly.
They don't; only the horrors and the eld-
erly gentlemen approve of me. But good-by
for to-day, Aunty Meg. Come to the gate,
Peggy, dear!"
The two friends walked through the orange-
grove, their arms wound about each other, girl-
fashion. They were silent, for each was sorry
to lose the other, and a remembrance of the
dear old times, the then unbroken circle, the
peaceful school-days and merry vacations, stole
into their young hearts, together with visions of
the unknown future.
As Polly untied Blanquita and gave a heroic
cinch to the saddle, she gave a last searching
look at Margery, and said, finally, "Peggy, dear,
I am very sure you are blue this morning; tell
your faithful old Pollikins all about it."



One word was enough for Margery in her ambitious boy I ever knew; and surely, surely
present mood, and she burst into tears on Polly's he cannot have changed altogether! Surely he
shoulder. will come to himself when he knows he may
Is it Edgar again? whispered Polly. have to leave college unless he does his best.
"Yes," she sobbed. Father has given him I 'm so sorry, dear old Peggy! It seems heart-


three months more to stay in the university,
and unless he does better he is to come home
and live on the cattle-ranch. Mother is heart-
broken over it; for you know, Polly, that Edgar
will never endure such a life; and yet, dearly
as he loves books, he is n't doing well with his
studies. The president has written father that
he is very indolent this term and often absent
from recitations; and one of the Santa Barbara
boys, a senior, writes Philip that he is not
choosing good friends nor taking any rank in
his class. Mother has written him such a, letter
this morning! If he can read it without turning
his back upon his temptations,whatever they may
be, I shall never have any pride in him again;
and oh! Polly, I have been so proud of him,-
my brilliant, handsome, charming brother "
Poor Edgar! I can't believe it is anything
that will last. He is so bright and lovable;
every one thought he would take the highest
honors. Why, Margery, he is, or was, the most

less that my brighter times should begin just
when you are in trouble. Perhaps mama and
I can do something for Edgar; we will try,
you may be sure. Good-by, dearest; I shall
see you again very soon."

Ten days later Polly stood on the deck of the
" Orizaba just at dusk, looking back on lovely
Santa Barbara as it lay in the lap of the foot-
hills freshened by the first rains. The dull, red-
tiled roofs of the old Spanish adobes gleamed
through the green of the pepper-trees, the tips
of the tall, straggling blue-gums stood out
sharply against the sky, and the twin towers
of the old mission rose in dazzling whiteness
above a wilderness of verdure. The friendly
faces on the wharf first merged themselves into
a blurred mass of moving atoms, then sank into
Polly glanced into her state-room. Mrs.
Oliver was a good sailor and was lying snug


and warm under her blankets. So Polly took
a camp-chair just outside the door, wrapped
herself in her fur cape, crowded her tam-
o'-Shanter tightly on, and sat there alone as the
sunset glow paled in the western sky and dark-
ness fell upon the face of the deep.
The mesa faded from sight; and then the
lighthouse, where she had passed so many
happy hours in her childhood. The bright disk
of flame shone clear and steady across the quiet
ocean, and seemed to say, Let your light so
shine! Let your light so shine! Good luck,
Polly Keep your own lamp filled and trimmed,
like a wise little virgin! And her heart an-
swered "Good-by, dear light! I am leaving
my little-girl days on the shore with you, and I
am out on the open sea of life. I shall know
that you are shining, though I cannot see you.
Good-by! Shine on, dear light! I am going
to seek my fortune! "

Extracts from Polly Oliver's correspondence.
SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. I, 188-.
DEAR MARGERY: I have been able to write you only
scraps of notes heretofore, but now that we are quite
settled I can tell you about our new home. We were at
a hotel for a week, as long as I, the family banker, felt
that we could afford it. At the end of that time, by walk-
ing the streets from morning till night, looking at every
house with a sign "To Let" on it, and taking mama
to see only the desirable ones, we found a humble spot
to lay our heads. It is a tiny upper "flat," which we
rent for thirty dollars a month. The landlady calls it
furnished, but she has an imagination which takes even
higher flights than mine. Still, with the help of the
pretty things from home, we are very cozy and com-
fortable. There is a tiny parlor, which with our Santa
Barbara draperies, table-covers, afternoon tea-table,
grasses, and books, looks like a corner of our dear
home sitting-room. Out of this parlor is a sunny bed-
room with two single brass bedsteads and space enough
to spare for mama's rocking-chair in front of a window
that looks out on the Golden Gate. The dining-room
just holds, by a squeeze, the extension-table and four
chairs, and the dot of a kitchen, with an enchanting gas-
stove, completes the suite.
We are dining at a restaurant three squares away at
present, and I cook the breakfasts and luncheons; but
on Monday, as mama is so well, I begin school from
nine to twelve each day under a special arrangement, and
we are to have a little China boy who will assist in the
work and go home at night to sleep. His wages will
be eight dollars a month, and the washing probably four

dollars more. This, with the rent, takes forty-two dollars
from our eighty-five, and it remains to be seen whether
it is too much. I shall walk one way to school, although
it is sixteen squares and all up and down hill.
The rains thus far have been mostly in the night, and
we have lovely days. Mama and I take long rides on
the cable-cars in the afternoon, and stay out at the Cliff
House on the rocks every pleasant Saturday. Then
we 've discovered nice little sheltered nooks in the sand-
dunes beyond the park, and there we stay for hours,
mama reading while I study. We are so quiet and so
happy; we were never alone together in our lives be-
fore. We have a few pleasant friends here, you know,
and they come to see mama without asking her to return
the calls, as they see plainly she has no strength for
society. .. POLLY.
P. S.-We have a remarkable front door which opens
with a spring located in the wall at the top of the stairs.
I never tire of opening it, even though each time I am
obliged to go down-stairs to close it again.
When Dr. George came last week, he rang the bell,
and being tired with the long pull up the hill, leaned
against the door to breathe. Of course I knew nothing
of this, and as soon as I heard the bell I flew to open
the door with my usual neatness and despatch, when
who should tumble in, full length, but poor dear Dr.
George He was so surprised, and the opposite neigh-
bors were so interested, and I was so sorry, that I was
almost hysterical. Dr. George insists that the door is a
trap laid for unsuspecting country people.
Nov. 9.
.. The first week is over, and the finances
did n't come out right at all. I have a system of book-
keeping which is original, simple, practical, and ab-
solutely reliable. The house-money I keep in a cigar-box
with three partitions (formerly used for birds' eggs), and
I divide the month's money in four parts, and pay every-
thing weekly.
The money for car-fare, clothing, and sundries I keep
in an old silver sugar-bowl, and the reserve fund (which
we are never to touch save on the most dreadful provoca-
tion) in a Japanese ginger-jar with a cover. These,
plainly marked, repose in my upper drawer. Mama has
no business cares whatever, and everything ought to
work to a charm, as it will after a while.
But this first week has been discouraging, and I have
had to borrow enough from compartment two, cigar-box,
to pay debts incurred by compartment one, cigar-box.
This is probably because we had to buy a bag of flour
and ten pounds of sugar. Of course this won't happen
every week .
I wrote Ah Foy a note after we arrived, for he really
seems to have a human affection for us. I inclose his
answer to my letter. It is such a miracle of Chinese
construction that it is somewhat difficult to get his idea;
still I think I see that he is grateful for past favors; that
he misses us; that the boarders are going on "very
happy and joy"; that he is glad mama is better and
pleased with the teacher I selected for him. But here it
is; judge for yourself:


I was much pleased to received a letter from you how are Your
getting along and my Dear if your leaves a go We but now I been it
is here I am very sorry for are a your go to in San Francisco if any
now did you been it is that here very happy and joy I am so glad
for your are to do teachers for me but I am very much thank you
Dear my trend. Good Bye
AH Foy.
Nov. 15.
The first compartment, cigar-box, couldn't
pay back the money it borrowed from the second com-
partment, and so this in turn had to borrow from the
third compartment. I could have made everything
straight, I think, if we had n't bought a feather duster
and a can of kerosene. The first will last forever, and
the second for six weeks, so it is n't fair to call compart-
ment number two extravagant. At the end of this month
I shall remove some of the partitions in the cigar-box
and keep the house-money in two parts, balancing ac-
counts every fortnight. .
Nov. 24.
My bookkeeping is in a frightful snarl.
There is neither borrowing nor lending in the cigar-box
now, for all the money for the month is gone at the end
of the third week. The water, it seems, was not included
in the thirty dollars for the rent, and compartment three
had to pay two dollars for that purpose when compart-
ment two was still deeply in its debt. If compartment
two had met only its rightful obligations, compartment
three need n't have "failed," as they say down East; but
as it is, poor compartment four is entirely empty-and
will have to borrow of the sugar-bowl or the ginger-jar.
As these banks are not at all in the same line of business,
they ought not to be drawn into the complications of the
cigar-box, for they will have their own troubles by and
by, but I don't know what else to do. .

Dec. 2.
.. It came out better at the end of the month
than I feared, for we spent very little last week, and
have part of the ten pounds of sugar, can of kerosene,
feather duster, scrubbing-brush, blanc-mange mold, ta-
pioca, sago, and spices with which to begin the next
month. I suffered so with the debts, losses, business
embarrassments, and failures of the four compartments
that when I found I was only four dollars behind on the
whole month's expenses I knocked all the compartments
out, and am not going to keep things in weeks. I made
up the deficit by taking two dollars out of the reserve
fund, and two dollars out of my ten-dollar gold piece
that Dr. George gave me on my birthday.
I have given the ginger-jar a note of hand for two dol-
lars from the cigar-box, and it has resumed business at
the old stand. Compartment four, cigar-box (which is
perfectly innocent, as it was borrowed out of house and
home by compartment three), also had to give a note to
the sugar-bowl, and I made the ginger-jar give me a note
for my two dollars birthday-money.
Whether all these obligations will be met without law-
suits, I cannot tell; but I know by the masterly manner
in which I have fought my way through these intricate

affairs, with the loss of only four dollars in four weeks,
that I possess decided business ability, and this gives
me courage to struggle on.
Dec. 30, I88-.
S. We are having hard times, dear old Margery,
though I do not regret coming to San Francisco, for
mama could not bear the slightest noise or confusion,
nor lift her hand to any sort of work, in her present con-
dition. At any rate, we came by Dr. George's orders,
so my conscience is clear. .
Mrs. Chadwick has sent us only sixty-five dollars this
month, instead of eighty-five. Some of the boarders are
behind in their payments. The darlings have gone
away, and "she hopes to do better next month." Mama
cannot bear to press her, she is so kind and well-mean-
ing; so do not for the world mention the matter to Dr.
George. I will write to him when I must, not before.
Meanwhile I walk to school both ways, saving a dol-
lar and a quarter a month. Have found a cheaper wash-
man; one dollar more saved. Cut down fruit bill; one
dollar more. Blacked my white straw sailor with shoe-
blacking, trimmed it with two neckties and an old
blackbird badly molted; result perfectly hideous, but
the sugar-bowl, clothing, and sundry fund out of debt
and doing well. Had my faded gray dress dyed black,
and trimmed the jacket with pieces of my moth-eaten
cock's-feather boa; perfectly elegant! almost too rich
for my humble circumstances. Mama looks at me sadly
when I don these ancient garments, and almost wishes
I had n't such "a wealthy look." I tell her I expect
the girls to say, when I walk into the school-yard on
Monday, Who is this that cometh with dyed garments
from Bozrah? "
Mama has decided that I may enter a training-school
for kindergartners next year; so I am taking the studies
that will give me the best preparation, and I hope to
earn part of my tuition fees when the time comes, by
teaching as assistant. .
I go over to Berkeley once a week to talk Spanish
with kind Professor Salazar and his wife. They insist
that it is a pleasure, and will not allow mama to pay any-
thing for the lessons. I also go every Tuesday to tell
stories at the Children's Hospital. It is the dearest
hour of the week. When I am distracted about bills
and expenses and mama's health and Mrs. Chadwick's
mismanagement and little Yung Lee's mistakes (for he
is beautiful as an angel and stupid as a toad), I put on
my hat and ride out there to the children, poor little
things! They always have a welcome for me, bless
them! and I always come back ready to take up my
trials again. Edgar is waiting to take this to the post-
box, so I must say good night. He is such a pleasure
to us and such a comfort to mama. I know for the first
time in my life the fun of having a brother.
Ever your affectionate, POLLIKINS.

The foregoing extracts from Polly's business
letters give you an idea only of her financial
difficulties. She was tempted to pour these
into one sympathizing ear, inasmuch as she


kept all annoyances from her mother as far as
possible; though household economies, as de-
vised by her, lost much of their terror.
Mrs. Oliver was never able to see any great
sorrow in a monthly deficit when Polly seated
herself before her cash-boxes and explained her
highly original financial operations. One would
be indeed in dire distress of mind could one

refrain from smiling when, having made the
preliminary announcement,-"The great femi-
nine financier of the century is in her counting-
room: Let the earth tremble! "-she planted
herself on the bed, took pencil and account-
book in lap, spread cigar-box, sugar-bowl, and
ginger-jar before her, and ruffled her hair for
the approaching contest.

(To be continued.)





THE SPOOL OF THREAD: "I declare I'd rather sit up all night than to undress."

would you please direct me to "

THE HOUR-GLASS: Excuse me, please,- it's time for me
to stand on my head."




~i-- -

-z- ---.

THE ALARMED ACCORDION: "Goodness, gracious! can this POOR MR. BELLOWS: It's no use. I can't wear a hat! every
be pneumonia! time I take a step my hat blows off! "

This is not a Sioux ghost-dance. It is only the Feather Dusters' Annual Ball.



ONE afternoon of the year 1841, General
John Bidwell, then a young lad and a member
of a band of pioneers who had crossed the
Rockies and were descending the western slope
of the Sierra Nevadas of California, in what is
now Calaveras County, left his companions and
went on a hunting expedition.
His success in securing game is not recorded,
but his hunt will be forever memorable as prob-
ably the first occasion on which the giant se-
quoia, or "big-tree," was seen by a white man.
The dusk of early evening caused him to hasten
back to camp without pausing to examine these


before-unheard-of kings of the forest, and the
urgency of pressing onward to the coast pre-
vented him from returning to them. He after-
ward planned an expedition to go to Calaveras

County for the express purpose of learning
more about the trees of which he had seen
only enough to arouse his enthusiasm, but the
war and the conquest of California, and, later,
the excitement which followed the discovery
of gold, caused him for the time to abandon
the scheme.
Eleven years passed, and the big-tree, al-
though it had been discovered, was still practi-
cally unknown. Then, in the spring of 1852,
writes Mr. Shinn, to whom we owe this account,
a hunter, while pursuing a wounded grizzly, found
the sequoia grove in Calaveras. He evidently
stayed long enough to become impressed by
the size of the trees, for on returning to his com-
rades they refused to believe his stories, nor
would they go with him to the scene of his
alleged discovery.
One morning, a short time afterward, he
came into camp, and, reporting that he had
shot an enormous grizzly, asked his companions
to go out and help him bring it in. Leading
them to the sequoia grove, he pointed to the
largest tree, and said triumphantly, There,
boys, is my grizzly!"
To-day we know that the home of the big-
tree, Sequoia gigantea of botanists, extends
from Placer County to southern Tulare County,
on the western slope of the Sierra Nevadas, from
4000 to 6000 feet above the sea, and that on
the coast, from Monterey County north to
northern California, it has a near but smaller
relative, the Sequoia senmpervirens, or redwood.
The big-tree is surpassed in height only by
the eucalyptus of Australia, while the redwood
may claim the honor of being the third largest
tree in the world. The largest known redwood
is 366 feet in height and twenty feet in diam-
eter. The big-tree attains a greater diameter,
but does not reach a proportionately greater
height. Thus there are big-trees recorded hav-


ing a diameter of forty-one feet, but we have
seen none mentioned as being over 400 feet in
The height of the largest known eucalyptus
tree is stated to be 470 feet, but the diameter is
only twenty-seven
feet. So while taller M
than the largest
big-tree, if their
proportions are the
same, the Califor-
nia tree has about
twice the bulk of
the one which
grows in Australia.
SIt is difficult for -
one who has not
seen trees that
tower from 300 to
400 feet into the .
air to realize their *
grandeur; and yet
when we remem-
ber that the torch a
of the Goddess of I '
Libertyis 305 feet -.
above the waters J- '
of New York Bay, "j1
and that Trinity -
Church and Bun-
ker Hill Monu-. ..
ment are respect-
ively only 283 and -
220 feet in height, "WITH A ROAR WHICH ECHOED T
we may by com-
parison gain some idea of the impressiveness of
these stupendous columns erected by the hand
of nature.
By counting the layers, or rings of wood, one
of which a growing tree acquires each year, it
has been ascertained that the age of the larger
big-trees is about 1200 years. Thus, while
Britain was still under Saxon rule, and before
Charlemagne had ascended the German throne,
these monarchs of the forest had commenced to
The big-tree is an evergreen related to the
cedars, and at a distance young trees look not
unlike cedars. But as they grow larger the re-
semblance is lost, and in comparison with their

size their foliage is scanty. The leaves, or
"needles," are short, and grow from alternate
sides of the stem; the cones, for so large a tree,
are diminutive, and are about one inch and a
half in diameter. The bark is deeply furrowed.

-.! -


It is sometimes three feet in thickness, but is
light and porous.
The wood of the big-tree is a valuable
article of commerce, and after being sawed
into marketable shape i't is worth about $30
a thousand feet. It is stated of one tree that
it contained 537,000 feet of lumber, and at
the value given it would, therefore, be worth
$ 6,11o. We need hot wonder, then, that the
sequoia groves are rapidly disappearing before
the ax of the lumberman.
The big-tree has been introduced into the
botanical gardens of England and France, and
one growing in the former country is nearly
seventy feet in height. About thirty years ago,


two big-trees were planted in Central Park, New
York City, but the climate there is evidently not
suited to them, for they are now
only thirty-five feet in height and
fourteen inches in diameter. They
may be seen to the left as one
descends the steps from the mall
to the lake.
But it is our object to tell of
one big-tree in particular, rather
than of big-trees in general. In
the fall of 1891, the American I.1
Museum of Natural History of i
New York City sent one of its
staff, Mr. S. D. Dill, to the
Pacific coast in order'to obtain
there specimens of certain trees
which were needed to complete
the "Jesup Collection of North
American Forestry." Among the
trees desired was the big-tree,
and I am asked to tell you about
the one he procured.
After reaching San Francisco,
Mr. Dill was fortunate enough
to meet a gentleman who owned A WEE

a grove of big-trees at Sequoia Mills in Tulare
County. This gentleman generously offered to
give the museum any tree in his grove which
Mr. Dill might select.
There are two sawmills at Sequoia Mills
which each day during the summer season cut
130,000 feet of big-tree wood into boards,
fence-posts, railway-ties, etc. These are sent
to the nearest railway station, distant sixty
miles, by means of a "flume." The flume, dr
trough, is wedge-shaped, with sides about eigh-
teen inches wide, and is supplied with water by
reservoirs. After being cut into the proper lengths
the lumber is stored until it is partly dried, and
then is placed in the flume and started on its
sixty-mile float down the mountains, making
the entire journey in about twelve hours.
In some of the big-tree groves the larger
trees have received names; and often a small
board bearing the name is fastened to the trunk
of the forest giant.
SThe tree selected for the museum, of which
at least a portion of the trunk was to be saved
from the all-devouring mill, was known as the
"Mark Twain." The Mark Twain was not
the largest tree remaining in the grove, but it




was one of the most perfect. At the base After three weeks of chopping and sawing the
it was thirty feet in diameter, while for 150 giant yielded, and, with a roar which echoed
feet its columnar trunk was unmarked by a limb, through the hills, it fell prostrate upon the long
and its topmost branches were 300 feet above track prepared to receive it.
the ground. It
was estimated to
contain 400,000.
feet of marketable
The ground i
where the tree was .
intended to lie was .'
cleared of all op-
posing obstacles,
in order that it '!
might not be in-
jured in its fall. .
Then a staging was
erected on its trunk
about twelve feet
from the ground,
and, mountingthis,
two axmnien com-
menced the attack.
As theirlabors pro-
gressedthe staging
was lowered, and,
after chopping in
about one third
the diameter of
the tree, it was
removed to the
opposite side, and
the operation was
repeated. The re-
maining portion of
the trunk was now
small enough to .
admit of the use
of a double-hand- _----.
ed saw, and after
chopping out a
small section from
the third side to
der," or hinge, for ON THE CUT SECTION OF THE TRUNK."
the tree in its fall, the saw was applied to the It was now the end of the lumber season,
fourth side. Wedges were driven in the open- and before going down to the valleys for the
ing made by the saw, and the tree was thus winter, a number of the employees of the mill
made to fall in the desired direction. were photographed on the trunk and also on

__.- A







the stump of the tree. Three tiers of men
were grouped one above the other on the cut
section of the trunk, while fifty-two formed a
circle around the outer edge of the stump.
But the museum did not want an entire big-
tree, and in order to obtain the section desired
two double-handed saws, each thirteen feet in
length, were joined by brazing, and a section
four and a half feet long was sawed from the
trunk just above the place where the ax-
men had commenced to chop. This section
is twenty feet in diameter, and weighs about
thirty tons. To reduce it to portable size it
was split into several smaller pieces. The lum-
bermen use dynamite for this purpose, but on
this occasion iron wedges were employed. It
was proposed to cart these specimens to the
railway-station at once and ship them eastward
to the museum, but a heavy fall of snow pre-
vented their removal, and it was necessary to
wait until the following spring.
The government has procured, from the same
lumber company which presented this tree to
the American Museum, part of an even larger
sequoia for exhibition at the World's Fair at
Chicago. The section which has been obtained
measures thirty feet in length, twenty-one and a
half feet in diameter at the bottom, and seven-
teen feet in diameter at the top. This will be
cut into two sections each fourteen feet in
length, and a third only two feet in length. The
largest sections, which are taken from the ends,
will be hollowed out, and all three will be
cut into pieces small enough to admit of trans-
portation. On reaching Chicago these pieces,
each one of which is to be numbered, will be
erected in their proper positions, and will thus
form a kind of tree-tower consisting of two cir-
cular chambers, each fourteen feet in height,
while the intervening section, having a thick-
ness of two feet, will constitute the ceiling of
the lower chamber and the floor of the upper.
At the present rate 'of destruction, in less
than ore hundred years from the time of their
discovery the larger big-trees will be known
only by their decaying stumps. Nor is the
lumberman the big-tree's only enemy. Forest
fires, and the herding of cattle which graze on
the young trees in the big-tree districts, prove

equally destructive. Fortunately several small
areas have been reserved by the government as
national parks, and it is the duty not alone of
every citizen of California, but of every citizen

of the United States, to see that the laws en-
acted for the preservation of these parks are
rigidly enforced.

VOL. XX. -8.

I-~i '2

It was an empty robins' nest
Left over from last year!
And yet it held a tender guest,
That wept a dewdrop tear.

It turned its eye upon the sky-
The wind the tear brushed off;
And when the sun came out on high,
Its elfin cap 't would doff.

. The guest-'t was but a chickweed flower,
The tiniest ever seen-
Made of the robins' nest a bower,
And kept their memory green.

Who knows how there the seedling grew,
With leaves and flowering stem?-
So long ago the robins flew,
You cannot ask of them!



IT was bitter cold on the night before Christ-
mas in latitude 400 30' north, longitude 500
west. That lies just south of the southern
extremity of the Grand Banks of Newfound-
land, and a wild, melancholy, uneasy part of
the Atlantic Ocean it is at the best of times.
But on a Christmas eve, with the wind in the
northwest, it is a home of desolation. The
wind was northwesterly on that particular

Christmas eve, and it was blowing what lands-
men would call half a gale and a sailor a brisk
breeze. But the good steamer "Astoria," from
Liverpool for New York, made no account of
a wind which served only to increase the draft
in her fire-room, and to enable the engineer to
squeeze half a dozen more revolutions per min-
ute out of the propeller. She was making a fair
nineteen and a half knots per hour.


I-~i '2

It was an empty robins' nest
Left over from last year!
And yet it held a tender guest,
That wept a dewdrop tear.

It turned its eye upon the sky-
The wind the tear brushed off;
And when the sun came out on high,
Its elfin cap 't would doff.

. The guest-'t was but a chickweed flower,
The tiniest ever seen-
Made of the robins' nest a bower,
And kept their memory green.

Who knows how there the seedling grew,
With leaves and flowering stem?-
So long ago the robins flew,
You cannot ask of them!



IT was bitter cold on the night before Christ-
mas in latitude 400 30' north, longitude 500
west. That lies just south of the southern
extremity of the Grand Banks of Newfound-
land, and a wild, melancholy, uneasy part of
the Atlantic Ocean it is at the best of times.
But on a Christmas eve, with the wind in the
northwest, it is a home of desolation. The
wind was northwesterly on that particular

Christmas eve, and it was blowing what lands-
men would call half a gale and a sailor a brisk
breeze. But the good steamer "Astoria," from
Liverpool for New York, made no account of
a wind which served only to increase the draft
in her fire-room, and to enable the engineer to
squeeze half a dozen more revolutions per min-
ute out of the propeller. She was making a fair
nineteen and a half knots per hour.



When the cold spray came over the weather-
bow like a discharge of shot made of ice, and
slashed the face of the first officer away up
on the bridge, he only pulled his cap down
more tightly over his ears, hauled the muffler
higher around his neck, squinted at the com-
pass-card and gritted his teeth, for he realized
that the mighty machine under his feet was let-
ting the degrees of longitude drop astern at a
pace which promised the steamship a splendid
winter record.
"If the Captain had only laid the course to
the nor'rard," he muttered, "we 'd 'a' broken
the record. I don't see wot he 's a-buggalug-
gin' around here for as if we was in the middle
o' summer, with ice on the banks. Keep your
eyes in the bowl, you!"
The last remark was addressed to the man at
the wheel.
I thought I seed summat w'en we riz to the
last sea, sir," said the man.
"See! Ye could n't see your grandmother's
ghost on sich a night, lad. It 's blacker 'n the
inside o' a cuttle-fish."
It was black, and no mistake. Little Molly
Ryan, who was among the poor steerage pas-
sengers with her father and mother, wondered
if the ship was sailing on the ocean or just on
darkness. Molly ought not to have been on
deck, and if any sailor had seen her she would
have been quickly sent below. But she was
such a little body, and she huddled up so
closely under the edge of the poop that no
one discovered her. It was so gloomy and
close in the steerage quarters, and so many
poor women were sick, that Molly had stolen
away, while her parents were dozing, to catch a
breath of fresh air. The cold wind seemed to
pierce through her, but she was fascinated by
the darkness; and after a time she climbed up
and sat on the rail, looking at the ghostly foam
as it hurled itself against the iron side and
swept hissing away under the quarter. Molly
was in great danger, but she did not know it.
She fancied she saw away down there in the
black-and-white waters a beautiful Christmas
tree loaded with silver toys that came and went
with the foam. Molly had never had a Christ-
mas tree, but she had heard about them, and
her fondest hope was that some day she might

see one. She leaned far out, looking down into
the waters, and, of course, she could not know
how close the bark Mary Ellis" was.
But the Mary Ellis was altogether too close.
She was flying swiftly along, before the wind,
thundering down into the yawning hollows that
flung her bows aloft again with terrible force,
and her course was diagonally across the bows
of the steamer. Now the skipper of the Mary
Ellis was a rough, mean man, and he was trying
to save oil, so his side-lights were not burning.
But those of the steamer were, and the watch
on the bark's deck ought to have seen them.
But for some reason they did not. So every
moment, the two ships kept drawing closer and
closer together, and just as a steward happened
to catch sight of Molly, and called to her to get
down, there was a sudden outbreak of shouts
The first officer immediately called a swift
order to the man at the wheel, then sprang to
the engine-room telegraph, and signaled the
engineer to stop.
A few seconds later there was a jar, a noise
of rending wood, and the Astoria struck the
Mary Ellis a glancing blow on her port quarter,
carrying away a part of her bulwarks. At the
same instant Molly Ryan fell off the Astoria's
rail into the sea.
"Man overboard!" screamed the steward,
who reached the spot just a moment too late
to catch her.
But it takes a long time to stop a steamer
going nearly twenty knots an hour, and by the
time that the first boat was lowered, the Astoria
was far beyond the spot where Molly went over.
Fortunately for Molly, when she came to the
surface half strangled, her little hands struck
something hard which floated. With the
strength of despair she climbed upon it. It
was the part of the Mary Ellis's bulwarks
knocked off in the collision. Still more fortu-
nately for Molly, the captain of the bark, rush-
ing on deck and hearing the cry, Man over-
board," thought that the words came from
some one on his own vessel, and ordered one of
his boats lowered away. Groping in the black-
ness amid the tumbling waters, the crew of this
boat found Molly, and took her aboard the bark.
Wot!" exclaimed the captain; "only a kid ?



Take her forward, some of you, an' see her
looked after."
And having made sure that the bark was not
seriously injured, he returned to his cabin to
"Wal, Han'some," said a long, lean seaman,
with a pointed beard, who looked for all the
world like a Connecticut farmer, wot ye goin'
to dew with yer wreckage, now ye got her?"
"Thaw her out," said "Handsome," as he
was called, carrying Molly into the galley.
The sailors fell into a general discussion as to
how Molly should be treated, for the poor little
thing was quite unconscious, and her clothes
were freezing on her. However, after a while
she was undressed, properly and gently "thawed

out," and put to bed. The sailor called Hand-
some mixed a warm drink and poured it be-
tween her teeth. She gave a little gasp, opened
her eyes, and gazed around.
Oh," she muttered, there is n't any Christ-
mas tree after all."
And with that she fainted away again. The
sailors looked at one another in solemn silence,
till finally one said, in a deep bass voice:
"Well, if she hain't a-'untin' fer trees on the
so'therly end o' the Grand Banks! "
"Wal, that 's wot she 's a-lookin' fur, an'
that 's wot she 's a-goin fur to get," said Hand-
some, slapping one huge fist into the other; and
then he and the other seamen sat down under
the forecastle lamp and conversed earnestly in

I116 -


low tones. After several minutes of talk they
all arose, and Farmer Joe said:
Han'some, yeou air consid'ble peert w'en
yeou 're peert. But there 's no time to lose.
We must get to work right away."
While the rough sailors were at work, little
Molly passed from a state of unconsciousness
to one of sleep. The big seamen took turns
in watching over her. It was not a pretty bed-
room that Molly had that night. It was dark
and dingy, and full of weird noises of groaning
timbers. A swinging lantern threw changeful
shadows into all the comers, and showed some
very rude bunks in which several sailors off
watch were trying to snatch a brief rest.,. Just
behind those bunks against the stout sides of
the bark the seas burst in booming shocks, and
ever. and anon there was a noise of falling
water overhead. Up and away the bows would
soar and then:plunge down again with a'sicken-
ing rush into the turmoil of foam. But of course
the sailors thought nothing of all these things.
The forecastle -was their home, and they were
long ago hardened to its sights and sounds. In
spite of everything, Molly slept quite soundly,
wrapped in a rough blanket and with a pea-
jacket spread over her shoulders, while Hand-
some and the other sailors were at work with a
boathook, some small pieces of wood, oakum,
and green paint. Whatever it was that they
were making, it was strange enough to look at;
but their hearts were in their work, and they
conversed earnestly in low tones. At last it was
finished and set up in a bucket close against
the bulkhead, where the lantern shed its fitful
light full upon it.
"Werry good, too," said Handsome, gazing at
it; "but it won't do unless it's got something'
onto it."
And then those sailor-men went rummaging
in their chests, and as theyhad been voyagers in
all parts of the globe, they brought forth some
curious toys to put upon the wondrous Christ-
mas tree which they had made. Handsome
contributed three large shells from the Indian
Ocean, a dried mermaid, and a small Hindoo
god which answered very well for a dolly.
Another produced a South African dagger,
Chinese puzzle, and three brass nose-rings from
a South Pacific island. Farmer Joe brought

out a stuffed marmoset, an Indian amulet, and
a tintype likeness of himself. A fourth sailor
fished out of his chest a beautiful India silk
handkerchief and a string of coral. Handsome
gravely hung them on the Christmas tree. When
all was done, he stepped back and studied the
"Werry good, too," he said.
"Yas," said Farmer Joe; "I guess yeou
could n't get any sech tree as that to homee"
At six o'clock on Christmas morning Molly
awoke. It was still dark, and the lantern's light
was but dim. The sailors were huddled back
in the corner furthest from their wonderful


Christmas tree, which was set where the child's
eyes were most likely to fall on it as soon as she
sat up in her bunk. So when Molly awoke she
did sit up and stare straight in front of her with
sleepy eyes, trying to collect her thoughts and




make out where she was. Gradually she be-
came conscious of the tree. Her eyes opened
wider and wider. She almost ceased to breathe
for a few moments. Then suddenly she
clapped her hands together and, with a little
scream of delight, cried joyously: "Why, it 's
a Christmas tree! "
The sailors nudged one another, and Hand-
some could not restrain a chuckle. Molly heard,
and looked around at them. A puzzled ex-

pression came over her face, and she studied
her surroundings for a minute.
Is n't that a Christmas tree ? she asked.
"That's wot it is I cried English; "an' we
also is Santa Clauses."
Oh! exclaimed Molly; what funny Santa
Clauses! I always thought there was only one."
"Well, aboard this 'ere bark there is several."
"And oh! cried Molly, clapping her hands
and jumping out of the bunk, "what a lot of


funny things I 've got for my Christmas! I
never got much before. But I think I 'd rather
have my father and mother, please." And then
she looked as if she were about to cry.
Don't go fer to cry," said Handsome, "an'
I '11 sing ye a song."
Oh, you are a nice Santa Claus!" cried
Molly, brightening up.
All the rest o' you Santa Clauses jine in the
chor-i-us," said Handsome, standing up and
taking a hitch at his trousers. Then he sang:

Oh, the cook he 's at the binnacle,
The captain 's in the galley,
An' the mate he 's at the foretop,
Wi' Sally in our alley;
An' the steward 's on the bobstay,
A-fishin' hard fer sole;
The wind is up an' down the mast;
So roll, boys, roll.


Roll, boys, roll, boys!
Never mind the weather.
No matter how the wind blows,
We '11 all get there together.

Oh, the captain could n't steer a ship,
Because he was a Lascar;
The cook he had to show the way
From France to Madagascar;
The ship she could n't carry sail,
Because she had no riggin';
The crew they had to live on clams,-
'T was werry deep fer diggin'.
Roll, boys, roll, boys etc.

The cook says: "Let the anchors go!"
The crew says: "We ain't got 'em."
The captain yells: "Then pack yer trunks!
We '11 all go to the bottom."
The steward hove the lead, sirs,
'T was three feet deep, no more;
So every mother's son of us
Got up and walked ashore.
Roll, boys, roll, boys! etc.

The land was full o' cannibals,
W'ich made it interesting .
We told 'em not to eat us, fer
We was sich bad digestin'.

The king comes down to see us,
An' he sports a paper collar;
An' he says if we '11 clear out o' that,
He '11 give us half a dollar.
Roll, boys, roll, boys! etc.

So we fells an injy rubber tree,
An' makes a big canoe,
About the shape and pattern
Of a number twenty shoe;
The cook he draws a sextant,
An' the captain draws his pistol:
One shoots the sun, an' one the king,
An' off we goes fer Bristol.
Roll, boys, roll, boys, etc.

An' now we 're safe ashore again,
We 're goin' fer to stay.
There 's grub to eat, an' grog for all,
An' wages good to pay.
I '11 cross my legs upon a stool,
An' never be a sailor;
I 'd rather be a butcher, or a
Baker, or a tailor.
Roll, boys, roll, boys!
Never mind the weather;
No matter how the wind blows,
We '11 all get there together.

At the end of the song all the seamen stood
up, joined hands, and danced around, roaring
out what Handsome called the "chorius," in
such tremendous voices that the captain, who
had come on deck, ran to the forecastle hatch
to see what was going on. He dropped down
among his men so suddenly that they all paused
in silence, expecting an outbreak of anger. But
the captain slowly realized the meaning of the
scene upon which he had intruded, and said:
"All right, lads; amuse her and take good
care of her. And when we get to New York
I '11 make it my business to find her father."
He was as good as his word, and in due
time Molly was placed in the arms of her
parents, who had been mourning her as dead.
It was a joyous reunion, you may be sure.
But all the rest of her life Molly remembered
her strange Christmas eve at sea, and her won-
derful Christmas tree.



ON a fence, a few miles from the village,
one day,
A man on the coret was trying to play.
"This would trouble," he said, all the
neighbors, I fear,
So I come out to practise where no one
can hear."
Bless his dear little heart! It 's not often
you see
Such a thoughtful, considerate person as he!


, ll' IIlBEFORE a clock two figures stood, with
A ` / cymbals and a drum,
Si And one each hour went rub-a-dub, the
-,, other tumty-tum;
These concerts," they would grumble, "are
__. too great a strain, we fear;
-- Why, we 're giving over eighty-seven hun-
-- dred in a year!"

'~ V;~VL'Bd~~~bYI1 r~li 'l~j~'I




MRS. THOMAS DE CATT-Were any gifts show-
ered on you, after you struck the high C ?
MR. THOMAS DE CATT--Nothing of value, my
dear; only a bootjack, two bottles, an old
shoe-brush, and three tomato-cans.

^ ie,' .

-" s i ~ ,-"


THE gingerbread boy on the
Christmas tree
Looked down from his place
with joy;
" There 's always room at the
top," said he,
For a well-bred gingerbread


THE boastful pug put on boxing-gloves,
And in a loud tone said he:
" I 'm champion of all the little dogs;
Will any one spar with me? "
And the Maltese cat, from a safe place, said:
"To spar with you I '11 agree."
" Come down on the ground, then," said
the pug;
Said the cat: "You come up in the tree!"



S. WHEN "His
Royal High-
ness" led the
final charge
S that resulted
in the utter
S defeat of the
enemy, he had
no idea that it
was to be his
last for that
S.. season. Of
course not;
for this was
only the first match-game of foot-ball since the
opening of school, and at least a dozen more
were dated to be played before Thanksgiving.
H. R. H. in this case stands for Harold
Rawlins Holden; but because of his initials he
had been called H. R. H.," or "His Royal
Highness," ever since he could remember. When
he became captain of the High School foot-ball
team, the name seemed more appropriate than
ever, for to what higher or more enviable posi-
tion could a boy attain ? As Hal Holden had
won it by dint of sheer pluck and hard work,
and as he was the most popular fellow in his
class in other ways besides, they felt that the
title of His Royal Highness" was well de-
served. And when, after leading that superb
rush, and plunging headlong into the fierce
scrimmage that gave the High School team the
deciding touch-down, just as time was called,
Hal made a vain effort to rise, and then fell
back with a groan, the fellows gathered about
him in deep distress. His knee was badly
wrenched, and all their rubbings and pulling
only seemed to make it worse. So, finally, the
brave "center rush" was taken home in a car-
riage, and carried tenderly up to the room that
he was not to leave for some weeks. It was
"hard luck": all the fellows said so.

Even they could not realize, though, how
hard it was to be compelled to lie there day
after day, and think sadly of all the games that
were being played without him.
The fellows were very good about coming in
to see him; the home folk read to him, and
amused him all they could, but no one seemed
to have any time to spare, and, of course, there
were long hours during which he had to amuse
himself. He tried to study, but did not succeed
in accomplishing much, his knee hurt him so;
and reading was uninteresting to one who
longed for action. So, at times, there was no-
thing for him to do but just to listen and think.
The Holdens' homestead was near a rail-
road, and as Harold lay in his room, listening
to all outdoor sounds and trying to determine
what they were, he thought the locomotives
had never whistled so loudly nor so continu-
ously before. It actually made him nervous,
in his weakened condition. What was all that
whistling for? It almost seemed as though it
were done on purpose to annoy him.
He asked every one who came near him, but
no one could tell him much. His mother said
she thought they just whistled to keep the track
clear. Mr. Holden said that all the whistling
was necessary, and meant something, though he
did not know just what.
So His Royal Highness" puzzled over the
whistles, and could obtain no satisfactory ex-
planation of their meaning, until one happy
day when from down-stairs came joyous shouts
of "Hal, Uncle Rawl's come! Uncle Rawl's
A few moments later a quick step was heard
on the stairs, and then Mr. Rawlins Holden,
Hal's favorite uncle, and the one he was named
after, entered the room. He was the manager
of a great railroad out West. A fresh breeze
and a flood of sunshine seemed to come with
him, and his cheery greeting, Well, my battle-



scarred veteran, what is the meaning of all
this, eh ?" was received with a warm welcome.
Oh, Uncle Rawl, I'm so glad you're come!
I hope you 've come to stay. I have so much
to tell you. And there 's one thing that has
been bothering me while I 've been shut up
here. You are a railroad man-won't you sit
down, now, and tell me what the whistles
mean?" cried Hal, eagerly.
"The whistles! What whistles ? "
"Why, the car-whistles. There 's one now.
Does that mean Go ahead,' or 'Back,' or
what? "
"I think it must have been one of the
'what ?' whistles," replied Mr. Holden. "If I
caught it rightly, it was a succession of short
blasts, asking some one what he was doing on
the track ahead of a train, and warning him to
get out of the way. If it were a cow, or a
horse, or a calf, or any other animal, the same
signal would have been used; and out west we
sometimes have to sound it to frighten deer
from the track; and I have known cases where
they refused to budge, and the train had to stop."
One short blast means 'Stop,' does n't it ?
What means Go ahead'? "
"Two long blasts. But here, seeing that
you are so interested in the subject, I '11 mark
all the whistle-signals on a bit of paper in long
and short dashes, and you can study them at
your leisure."
With this the railroad manager took a sheet
of paper and jotted down on it the several
whistle-signals in common use by all American
railroads, accompanying each with a few words
of explanation. Then he read as follows:
One long blast (thus: ) must be sounded
when approaching stations, junctions, or cross-
ings of other railroads.
"Two long and two short blasts (like this:
-- -) are sounded just before cross-
ing a wagon-road.
One short blast (thus: -) is the call for
brakes," continued Mr. Holden, "and two long
ones (like this: ) orders them to be
loosed, or thrown off.
Two short blasts (thus: -) is an answer-
ing signal, and means' All right. I understand';
while three short blasts (like this: -), to
be repeated until acknowledged by the waving

of a flag or lantern, means, I want to back the
train as soon as you are ready.'
Four long blasts (so --)
calls in any flagman who may have been sent
out to the east or north; while four long blasts
and one short one (like this: -
- -) calls in a flagman from the west or
Four short blasts (thus: -) is the
engineman's impatient call to flagmen, switch-
tenders, or trainmen, demanding, 'Why don't
you show the signal for me to go ahead?' or,
' What is the matter ?'
"When a train is standing, five short blasts
(such as these: - -) is the order
for a brakeman to run back along the track and
display a danger-signal for the next following
"What is the danger-signal ? asked Hal,
who was beginning to consider these railroad
signals almost as important and well worth
knowing as those in which he drilled his foot-
ball team.
"Red for danger, green for caution, and
white for safety: flags by day and lanterns at
night," replied the railroad uncle, adding: I
am sure you must have noticed men at road-
crossings waving white flags to show that the
track was clear, as your train rushed by ?"
Of course I have," answered Hal.
"Or the watchmen on sharp curves and
bridges, waving green flags as much as to say:
'You may go ahead, but you must do so with
caution' ?"
"I don't remember seeing them," responded
Hal; "but I '11 look out for the green flags the
very next time I go in the cars."
A red flag or a red light is imperative," con-
tinued Mr. Holden, "and means 'Sound the
call for brakes and stop at once.' There are
other danger and cautionary signals I think
you will be especially interested in," added his
uncle, "torpedoes and fusees, for instance. A
torpedo upon the rail is one of the most used
and most reliable of all the danger-signals."
"But I should n't think it would be loud
enough," objected Hal. Why don't you use
something louder,- say, cannon-crackers ? "
Oh, you are thinking of the little paper-
wrapped torpedoes such as children play with;



but they are not the kind I mean. A railroad
torpedo is a round tin box, just about the size
of a silver dollar, filled with percussion-powder.
Attached to it are two little leaden strips that
can be bent under the edges of the rail, so as to
hold the torpedo firmly in position on top of
it. In this position, when a locomotive-wheel
strikes it with the force of a sledge-hammer, it
explodes with a report, fully as loud as a can-
non-cracker, that can be plainly heard above all

other sounds of the train. It is a warning suf-
ficient to arouse the engineman, and to render
him keenly alert.
"If a train meets with any accident or ob-
struction that bids fair to cause a delay of more
than a few seconds, the engineman sounds five
short whistle-blasts ( -). On hear-
ing this signal the rear brakeman must imme-
diately run back a quarter of a mile or so,
and place a torpedo on one of the rails that his


train has just passed over. Then, going back
about two hundred yards farther, he places two
more torpedoes, a rail's-length apart. He then
returns to the first torpedo, and, with his red
flag in hand, stands there until the recall signal
is sounded from his own train. On hearing this,
he picks up and takes with him the single tor-
pedo, but leaves the other two where they are.
"These two torpedoes thus form a caution-
ary signal; and, translated by the next follow-
ing engineman, mean The train ahead of you
has met with a delay. Move cautiously, and
keep a sharp lookout.' The single torpedo is an
imperative warning to apply the air-brakes,' Shut
off,' and 'Reverse!'- in other words, 'Stop at
once; for there is danger immediately ahead.'
If a train is delayed at night, the rear brake-
man sometimes leaves another bit of fireworks
behind him when called in. It is a fuseee,'
which is a paper cone containing enough red
fire, inextinguishable by wind or rain, to burn
exactly five minutes, which is the shortest length
of time allowed between two running trains.
The engineman of a following train must stop
when he comes to a fusee, and not move ahead
again until it has burned out; though he can
calculate from its condition just about how far
ahead the next train is."
I 'm ever and ever so much obliged, Uncle
Rawlins," exclaimed His Royal Highness,"
who had been intensely interested in these ex-
planations; "but I hope you're not too tired to
go on; you have n't told me anything about
the bell-signals yet."
"The gong-bell in the locomotive-cab is
struck by means of a bell-cord that runs the
whole length of the train."
Oh, yes, I know. I have often seen a con-
ductor pull the bell-cord in a car, and when he
pulls once it means Go ahead,' does n't it? "
"Yes," answered Mr. Holden; "one tap of
the bell when the train is standing, is the signal
to start.
"Two taps when the train is running, is the
signal to stop at once.
"Two taps when the train is standing, means
'Call in the flagmen. We are ready to go

Three taps when the train is running,
means 'Stop at the next station.'
"Three taps when the train is standing, is
the signal to move back.
"Four taps when the train is running, means
'Go a little slower.'
"When one tap of the bell is heard while the
train is running, it is usually a sign that some
of the cars have broken loose, and warns the
engineman to ascertain immediately whether
such is the case."
"Well, next, Uncle Rawl, what about the
lantern-signals ?"
A lantern swung crosswise means Stop!'
One raised and lowered means to go ahead.
A lantern swung across the track when the
train is standing, is the signal to move back;
and one swung at arm's-length over the head.
when a train is running, means that some of the
cars have broken loose. A flag, or even the
hand, moved in any of these directions, must
be obeyed as promptly as though the signal
were made with a lantern."
And now," said Mr. Holden, after finishing
these welcome explanations. "While I am
away I will try to get you one of the train-
men's book of rules, which, under the headings
Whistle-Signals,' Bell-cord Signals,' Lantern-
Signals,' 'Torpedoes and Fusees,' will explain
the whole matter fully."
Harold warmly thanked his uncle.
The book was brought home that evening,
and Harold found in it enough to interest him
until his recovery.

tA >



WHILE eagerly listening for the postman's
ring, or reading the welcome letters that cre-
ate a pleasant excitement in the home circle,
do the ST. NICHOLAS young people ever think
of the speedy and ingenious ways by which
their dear absent friends are enabled to talk to
them ?
Perhaps a little chat about the methods and
difficulties of conveying letters in bygone days
may help you to realize and appreciate the
advantages of the present.
We will not go farther back than the latter
part of the seventeenth century--about two
hundred years ago. And we will imagine our-
selves in England.
There were no steamboats and steam-cars to
carry travelers to near or distant parts of the
country at that time. And as people stayed at
home so generally, there was not nearly so much
letter-writing as now. We go on frequent jour-
neys, and want to let our dear ones know where
we are, what we are doing, and how we are far-
ing. Besides, there were not many post-offices
outside of the cities and large towns, and it was
only to important places in the vicinity of
London that the mail was sent as often as once
a day, and towns at some distance had their
letters and newspapers but once a week. To re-
mote country places, villages, gentlemen's coun-
try residences, and farms, especially during the
winter, when the public and private roads were
very bad, the mails were very uncertain, being
often a fortnight and sometimes an entire month
At that time the bags containing the letters
were all carried by horsemen, the mail-carrier
jogging along by night and day at the rate

of about five miles an hour-in good weather,
and in summer-time; for the highways were
usually in a very bad condition, so that fast
riding was not possible. The postman often ran
the risk of being stopped and plundered by
mounted highwaymen, at that time a terror to
travelers by horseback or coach. They seemed
to be on a sharp lookout for any valuables in
money, paper, or otherwise that might be sent
in the post-bags. They rode the fastest and
finest horses, were bold and daring; and when
the postman found himself in a lonely road or
crossing a dark moor late at night, you may
be sure he urged his weary horse forward and
joyfully welcomed the first ray of light that
shone from the lantern swinging to the sign
of the roadside inn.
Hounslow Heath, Finchley Common, and
Gadshill, in the neighborhood of London, were
celebrated haunts of the highwayman, and the
secluded roads of Epping Forest, on the route
to Cambridge, were often the scenes of plun-
der in broad daylight. These desperate robbers
at last became so dangerous and the peril of
their attacks so serious to travelers of all kinds,
as well as to the postmen, that the government
passed a law making highway robbery an offense
punishable by the death of the criminal and
the confiscation of all his property. But rob-
beries still occurred
In 1783, mail-coaches protected by armed
guards took the place of postboys. The
coaches carried passengers also, and, as these
generally carried arms, the mails were better
protected; but still daring and oftentimes suc-
cessful attacks were made upon them.
As I have already told you, writing and re-

om the postboy

to the [ast Mil.

"' '

-i- --F-


ceiving letters was not the every-day occurrence
that it is with us. Letters to friends were usu-
ally written with much pains and formality, and
carefully gave all the family news and neigh-
borhood items that were supposed to be inter-
esting to the recipients.

Occasionally a few words would be written
on one corner of the folded letter, requesting
the postman to forward it to its destination
with all speed."
But the various ways in which the letters of
our great-great-great-ancestors were written, di-


Stiff, quaint expressions described the quiet,
old-fashioned romances, the sorrows, tragedies,
and adventures of the entire country-side since
the writing of the last letter-perhaps a year
before. The sheets of paper were large and
parchment-like, the handwriting usually plain
and clear. Envelops were unknown. The let-
ters were carefully folded with the blank side
of one sheet on the outside, or were wrapped in
an unwritten sheet. They were most carefully
and formally addressed and safely sealed with
wax and taper; sometimes a fine silken cord
was tied around them before sealing, and this
was secured by the seal.

rected, and sealed would make a story too long
to be told here.
The newspapers were an important part of the
mail. Such a thing as a daily paper was not
dreamed of, as news was circulated so slowly
that there would not have been enough to fill
a small-sheet daily. The weekly paper was a
moderate-sized two-page affair. The few re-
ceived in remote country places by the promi-
nent residents were passed on, after being read,
to the neighbors, to be carefully read by them
and returned.
In this country, at the same period, we dis-
tributed our letters and newspapers after the



style of our English relatives; though, perhaps,
we were a little more progressive in our methods.
Benjamin Franklin, who was made deputy
postmaster-general for the colonies in 1753, was
active in spreading and facilitating postal com-
munication. In 1760 he astonished the people
by his daring project to run stage-wagons for
carrying the mails from Philadelphia to Boston
once a week! These wagons. were to start from
each city on Monday morning and to reach their
destinations on Saturday evening.
As years passed the mail service was greatly

improved in this country and in Great Britain;
but the following extract from Mr. Robert
MacKenzie's "The Nineteenth Century" will
give you an idea of the way in which the most
important and thrilling public and national in-
telligence was sent through England during the
first third of this century. He says:

Intelligence traveled by a process so slow that it
amuses us now to hear of it, although it was but as yes-
terday since no one dreamed of anything different.
When the battle of Waterloo was fought, and the de-
spatches three days after reached London, they were





printed in newspapers and the newspapers were loaded
into mail-coaches. By day and night these coaches
rolled along at their pace of seven or eight miles an hour.
At all cross-roads messengers were waiting to get a
newspaper, or a word of tidings from the guard. In
every little town, as the hour approached for the arrival
of the mail, the citizens hovered about the streets, waiting
restlessly for the expected news.
In due time the coach rattled into the market-place,
hung with branches; the now familiar token that a
battle had been fought and a victory gained. Eager
groups gathered. The guard, as he handed out his mail-
bags, told of the decisive victory which had crowned and
completed our efforts.
And then the coachman cracked his whip, the guard's
horn gave forth once more its notes of triumph, and the
coach rolled away, bearing the thrilling news into other
districts. Thus- was intelligence conveyed during the
first thirty or forty years of the century.
Before the use of postage-stamps various
sums were paid for the delivery of letters. The
amounts were regulated by the distance, and
were collected on the delivery of the letter.
In the early part of this century the postage
on a single sheet of paper was eight cents, and
VOL. XX.-9.

over forty miles the rate was increased; so that
over five hundred miles a single sheet was
twenty-five cents. But after a time these
rates were gradually reduced, until in 1845 a
letter weighing not over half an ounce was
five cents under three hundred miles, and over
that distance, ten cents.
Sir Rowland Hill, who was at the head of the
Post-office department of England at this time,
introduced the use of postage-stamps in 1840,
and also lessened the charges for postage. In
1847 the United States adopted the use of the
postage-stamp, the lowest-priced one being five
But railways and steamboats had now taken
the place of the old-fashioned mail-coaches and
postboys; and with the more rapid sending of
the mails, the cheaper rates of postage, and the
growing population of the country, gradual
changes and improvements took place in the
post-office system. And here we are, in 1892,
receiving our letters from the Pacific coast in



us to realize. To think of it almost
sets our heads spinning.
But delightful as it may be to
v hear from our absent friends so
often and so speedily, there is said
to be a drawback to this happy
The long, pleasant, newsy, charm-
ing, carefully written letters of the
past seem with the increase of postal
facilities to have gone quite out of
fashion-and in their stead we have
shorter ones carelessly written and
badly expressed.
Now, let me venture to hope the
ST. NICHOLAS young folk will culti-
vate the beautiful but neglected art
of letter-writing--and when reply-
ing to the letters that have given
them so much pleasure will try in
return to tell in a bright, sensible
way all the bits of family fun and
cheery news.


six days also from
England in the same
time; and a few days
or hours will place us
in direct communica-
tion with our friends
and correspondents in
almost every part of
the country.
Still greater advan-
tages in the way of
rapid postal service are
contemplated by the
officials at the head of
our postal affairs.
By electricity and in
pneumatic tubes, doubt-
less, soon our letters, -
magazines, and papers
will fly to us with a ra-
pidity that is difficult for A LETTER FROM FATHER.







OVER a little town in the heart of the Rocky Mountains
floated a heavy cloud. A young girl stood by the win-
dow of one of the pretty homes, and watched anxiously
the sky above. As she looked, her brother stepped
up behind her. "Never mind, Kate," he said,
"we '11 have a good Christmas, if it does snow."
Kate frowned. "What is the use of
any more snow ? It 's four feet deep on
the L rci.Iond ino.,v, nd all the roa.:il
are tlo:krd. e\\V can't t get a,
Chri- tm: as nail : the ui-2ar iin t':.- Ii
is all goirie; onily on'r co_, t,-
gi\e milk f;:r the cll!dren, noit ,n;
an egg to: be had:i; w.e can't
even bike a c.ak '" '. L
A.:ld jusit then it lie flake-
came i,'ating through thie '
air. Katc'- ecl\amati:,n /
Sas a doiletul There

i: crime
O\ er
the lathli





-s! It 's ti:,,, L a d !"
near the nLrei r :e asat
r. ks i. e ih e..l,: Kate's
ed / tc.ic e ainic toA t he
f '. vic jw.
"':' --.-T- Tlh Doi:ct..-r w- i3s li der
n. i n ;itl, I :.i lnd ire- in' gray
r,~. Iar. Tle Awere manit linv taross
Sl i;relead, buit m r _ii then, had
re,' l drian 1%i c ia e a rnl tht,_,udi l. i. e by
Sae, anr none t all by li- ricontrnt. As he
i t, :i od a rti str, ki Ka; -';'l h 'ir, it wa- ea- to see
that the iung girl :- the prnde of his heart.
S YOur mother, ry ,lear." Ihr father taid !owly,
a is a, s % a,.l !,-n it ;rei.id t Chrirntm .- r She
abli:as aid. i-ea! Ci, n'iii-: s!,ould b- a white (Chnstmas.'"
Tears stoo in Kate' eye, arnd H:,rry turned a,%..ma hilc ead.
He dii not .u-i Kaite to krih, hl-.% &-.k Ie jome had [been to
him since their m ther's death.
Through thle gathering sni:.,. tw% h-aiy fi-ure c.rame tiiar, the house.
SH.irr ,-ren. ed tli door,aol an t',o strorg m,:n, ilith ,i -lute faces.
Doe; Dr. \\ard li- he re ?" thel a- kel.
The doctor stepped forward. In spite of the storm, the men lifted their caps as
they saw his face.


"There 's a man hurt up at the mines," said
the taller of the two men. Will you come
up, Doctor ?"
"Certainly," said the doctor, promptly.
The man looked at the two young people.
Doctor," he said, "you know the snow is
sliding badly? It 's a deal of risk."
The doctor nodded, and put on his thick coat.
"Oh, papa !" cried Kate, "not to-day! Not
you! We can't let you go." In distress she
turned to the men: "Can't you get some
younger man for such a hard trip?"
The man looked troubled. "I 'm sorry,
Miss; we did try. But," his face hardening,
"no other doctor will go. And the man' is
badly hurt."
Poor Kate Father and brother had hidden
their own grief over the mother's death, and
striven to make her life bright. Now she could
not believe she could be put aside for any other
call. She clung to her father, sobbing.
Kate," he said, as he took her hands, "my
work is to save lives-"
"But, Papa! your life-so useful--save
My dear, who can tell which life is most
needed? Besides, your fears are foolish, dear.
There is probably no real danger. I shall
come back safely, never fear."
He stopped with his hand on her head. Then,
satchel in hand, he went to the door. As he
stepped across the threshold he took Harry's
hand. My boy," he said, you are like your
mother. I can trust Kate to you "; and the
door closed. The three men plowed their way
up the street into the mountain-trail that led to
the mines. Kate watched the figures grow
small in the distance, till the snow hid them
from sight. The mighty hills that shut in the
town never looked to Kate so high, so silent,
so unmoved as during the long hours of that
day. In vain Harry planned diversions; she
watched the window with a sorrowful face.
Still the storm raged; and, as the twilight gath-
ered, Harry could not keep anxiety from his
face and voice. Down in the valley the twilight
fades early, and it was dark when a heavy rap
brought Harry to the door. There stood
twelve men, and in their midst, on a sled, an
uncouth mass of snow-covered blankets.

"Where's father?" gasped Harry, staring
at the sled with its heavy burden.
He said we were to tell you the storm was
so bad he 'd stay up at the mine to-night.
We 're taking the fellow that was hurt down to
the hospital."
Noble fellows! cried Harry, with his face
aglow, as the men set off again. Those twelve
men have brought that hurt fellow down the
mountain on a sled in this storm and darkness,
over four feet of snow. They faced death every
step of the way, for the snow is sliding all the
Kate stared at the fire, but said nothing.
Suddenly a veil had been lifted. She saw
not only her noble father risking his life for
others,-that was no new vision,-but the
rough, the faithful miners, twelve of them,
risking their lives to carry to greater safety one
poor, hurt, perhaps dying, man. And she-
all day long she had brooded over her own
selfish sorrow and anxiety, letting Harry try to
amuse her, but never thinking of his troubles.
With a flush of shame she started up.
Harry," she said, we '11 practise a little
to-night; can't we?"
And Harry brought out his flute and the
music with a face of such relief and happi-
ness that Kate's heart gave another throb of
The morning of the next day dawned clear
and cool. Gradually the sun rose over the
mountains, each moment touching into new
glory the light and shadow, the color and glit-
tering sheen of the vast snow-covered hills.
Kate sung over her morning work and thought
tenderly of the new comfort she would bring into
her father's life from that day forward. Nine
o'clock it was before the sunlight touched the
town in the valley. Harry began to watch
the mountain-trail for his father. All day long
the "beauty of the hills" glittered before the
longing eyes of Kate and Harry, but no father
came down the shining mountain-path. At
three o'clock the sun went down, and the tints
of sunset glowed upon the snowy heights.
Kate bravely struggled through the pretense
of a meal; but self-control is not learned in a
day, and by evening Harry found her crying
softly by herself.

Kate," he said," don't worry; to-morrow I '11 Harry started early next morning, and Kate
go up the mountain and see if father is still there." bravely watched him out of sight.
"We '11 be home for
Christmas," he shouted
back, for his spirits rose

thing to do. He climbed to
the mines, and found, to his
m dismay, that his father had
started down early the pre-
ceding morning, the super-
intendent having watched
him out of sight.
"Well," said Harry, "I
must go down and get up a
party from town to search
for him."
"That is the best way,"
said the manager.
He said nothing of the
danger Harry himself must
pass through. Danger was
around them all.
Harry was strong, active,
and skilful in the use of the
"snow-shoes," or "skees,"
which he wore that day.
The boy's face was sad-
.- dened by his fears for his
father, but a resolute look
4 .... flashed into his eyes as he
made ready for the perilous
trip. Just as he shot for-
ward, came the thunder of
a blast of dynamite in the
mine above him. A shout
went up, "A snow-slide!"
and a mass of snow, dislodg-
ed by the explosion, came
crushing past. A corner of
the shed containing the men
2 was carried away. The men
S, looked at each other. Their
escape had been narrow;
.....where was the boy who had
just now shot forward in the
very path of the avalanche ?
'It needed no shout to tell
Harry what the result of
HARRY S RACE FOR LIFE. that report would be. He




had started, and almost at that instant the out of his body, and for some minutes he did
snow was on his track. There was no chance not move.
for turn or thought of pause. His only chance Then a shout came through the air, and he
for life was to reach the valley before the lifted himself as a band of miners came flying
avalanche, down the mountain toward him. They came
Over the shortest, steepest descent he flew, on snow-shoes from the mines above, and were
the wind cutting his face, all thought merged overjoyed to find the boy alive. "He beat the
in one fire of effort to fly faster, snow-slide! they ejaculated, and Harry, a hero
from that hour, was
_,. escorted home in
triumph. At the
S' door stood Kate,
and back of her the
good father, safe and
sound. On his way
r" down from the mine,
the doctor had been
Sailed by a man who
lived in a little cabin
.. a sheltered in the
mountain-side. The
man's child had
broken an arm, and
by the time every-
I thing was done for
_. his relief, the short
..day was so far gone
that the doctor was
obliged to stay all
That Christmas
-- ..eve," as Kate and
"-Harry and their fa-
their stood watching
the stars glow and
sparkle in the keen
mountain air, Kate
put her hand on her
'father's arm as she
-" 'said, "There won't
) be much for Christ-
mas, to-morrow; but
anything that could
__ ___ come to me would
Faster, faster, he skimmed the glittering after having you and Harry given back to me."
snow till he shot like an arrow from a bow My dear," said her father, "since the Christ-
into the plain below, and fell headlong cov- mas angels first sang 'Peace on earth, good will
ered by the frosty spray at the edge of the toward men,' the best gift that can come to any
spent avalanche. The breath seemed pressed of us is an unselfish heart."





[Beguin in the November number.]



S..SEVERAL long days
after Sir Frederick
Parry's excursion-
party set out so
merrily from The
; Grampians, the hot
December sunlight
shone down over
the wilderness, and
sent its searching rays into many wild-look-
ing places.
One of them was a mountain pass, between
gigantic and almost perpendicular walls of
rock, which were grandly high, and shattered,
and irregular. Only here and there could the
sunshine reach the boulder-strewn, natural road

at the bottom of the pass. No wagon could
have traveled that road, but a horse could do
so, or a man; and in and out among the boulders,
carefully picking his way, a man was leading
a heavily laden horse. The animal was large,
and strong, and bony, and so was the man.
The horse was black, and looked as if his coat
had never known a currycomb or a brush. At
intervals, the man cast quick, anxious glances
behind him, up the pass.
"They 're after me again," he exclaimed. "I
knew they 'd follow me, as soon as I met that
fellow Jim. They have n't caught up. yet,
though; and I '11 beat them, this time, as I have
beaten them before. But it won't do to push
too fast with such a cargo as this."
He was silent, for a moment, while he helped
the horse through a bad place, throwing some
fragments of rock out of the way with an ease
that suggested a reason why no one man would
be likely to stop him. Then he added:


I won't have to visit that gulch again. I 've
emptied my old hiding-place this time, and I 'm
bound to land this cargo in the cave. What
I '11 do then I don't know; but I won't let that
crew of robbers get it. And they sha'n't get
me, either."

In another forest place, there was a long but
not very wide level of rich green grass, sur-
rounded by remarkable trees, some of which
were enormously tall; and it seemed as if several
of them had found themselves too crowded,
and had moved out and selected new standing-
places in the open prairie. These prairie trees
were at considerable distances from each other,
and one of them had queer company.
It was a company of four, and they were
four-footed animals, but they did not seem to
know what to do with their feet. When they
sat down, they still appeared to be standing
up, and the largest of them, when sitting, held
his head as high as that of a man.
They were evidently in their own pasture-
ground, for they were feeding; but they kept up
the most timid and ceaseless watch in all direc-
tions. A hunter would have said that they
would prove as difficult to "stalk" as a herd
of red deer.
Along the easterly edge of the open pasture
ran a line of dense bushes; and completely hid-
den behind one of these bushes two boys were
lying upon the ground.
Ned, look! I 'm glad we did creep up.
There are four kangaroos! "
Just what we 're after, Hugh," whispered
Ned; "but they 're away out of range."
I don't see how we can get any nearer,"
said Hugh. "They 're the timidest game!
We 'll lose them, I 'm afraid."
If we don't get one of them we '11 starve! "
exclaimed Ned. I wish I had a rifle instead
of this double-barreled gun."
"And buck-shot won't reach them," said
Hugh. "Maybe they '11 feed out this way.
"It's hard to wait," said Ned. Not a
mouthful to eat since yesterday noon! I 'm
fearfully thirsty, too."
I 'm afraid they have n't any fresh meat in
the camp, either," replied Hugh. I wish we

knew where it is. Mother '11 be dreadfully wor-
ried about us."
"Keep still," said Ned. "They're moving!"
Ned and Hugh now stared more and more
eagerly out at the group of kangaroos. At a
little distance behind the lads, a pair of saddled
horses were tethered to a sapling, and behind
each saddle was strapped a rolled-up blanket.
Each of the boys carried a double-barreled,
breech-loading duck-gun." It was evident
that they had wandered from the camp to
hunt, and had lost their way.
"We must n't starve !" said Ned.
"If we were on the other side of that cab-
bage-tree," replied Hugh, "we 'd be within easy
range of them."
That was precisely the reason why the cab-
bage-palm had yet other company, that sunny
summer morning in December. Queer com-
pany were these, also -as queer as were the
kangaroos themselves. Half a dozen dark, al-
most naked human forms seemed to be making
use of the great tree to hide the crouching,
creeping, snake-like gliding of their swift ap-
proach for a nearer look at the watchful game.
They were gaunt and lean, but very muscular
men. They were very black, with woolly hair,
but they did not have African faces. Their
bodies and limbs were marked with singular
ridges of welts and scars, but they were not
tattooed, and they did not carry any weapons
of white men's manufacture. On the other
hand, each of them seemed burdened with a
curious collection of spears and sticks, although
none had a bow.
Hugh," said Ned, there are bushes over
there, beyond that tree. We could creep close
up, if we could get around to that side of it."
"We could get a brace of them! replied
Hugh, excitedly. Let 's try."
A branch of a bush was just then waving
slowly, out at the side of the trunk of the palm.
It was as if the wind moved it, and it did not
attract any attention from the kangaroos.
But there came, at that moment, a flash of
quick and anxious intelligence into the dark,
keen eyes of the Yankee boy.
"Lie low, Hugh!" he exclaimed. "Look!
There is n't any wind. Something else must be
moving that bush. Wait a bit."


There it is again," said Hugh; away out."
But neither of them could see through the
dense foliage of the handful of twigs which
waved up and down against the cabbage-palm.
Eyes on the opposite side could see better than
theirs, however, and a large, rolling, eager pair
of very black eyes were using that green branch
as a mask.
The black man watched the kangaroos in-
tently for a moment, and he seemed to be
taking a kind of measurement of their distance
from the foot of the palm. Then he drew back,
and a second black man took his turn at look-
ing, with the bush-branches for a screen, and
he also drew back. He put down the twigs,
and the two seemed to be studying. Two men
who could neither count nor measure, as civil-
ized men count and measure, were in reality
counting and measuring as accurately as if they
had been a pair of surveyors with perfect in-
struments. They had dropped their spears and
sticks before peeping out at the kangaroos, and
now each of them stooped and picked up a
queer crooked club. All the other black men
lay flat in the grass, while these two went on
with their puzzling operations. Neither of them
could see any part of a kangaroo through the
trunk of the tree. Each stood and balanced
himself, leaning forward, with his bit of curved
wood held in his right hand by one end.
Those crooked sticks were not much over two
feet long, perhaps not more than two or three
inches wide at the center, the widest part, and
were made to taper at each end. They were
curved on one face and flat on the other and
sharp at the edges. You would have said great
pains had been taken to shape those sticks so
that it would be impossible for anybody to
throw them straight or make them hit any
object they were thrown at.
Each black man held his dark, heavy-look-
ing, wooden weapon with the flat side down,
until he had finished his balancing and calcu-
lating, and then he suddenly drew back and
hurled it from him, with a peculiar, jerking twist
of his wrist. Almost at the same moment, each
of them stooped and picked another and threw
it, and then a third. As the third cast was
made, each uttered a loud, screeching yell, the
two harsh cries bursting forth at almost the

same second, followed by yells from all the rest
of the party as they sprang from the grass,
seized their spears and sticks and bounded
Ned and Hugh had noted every movement
of the green mask by the palm, and the kan-
garoos also must have begun to suspect danger,
for all of them had ceased feeding, sat upright,
and pricked their ears and turned their pretty
heads inquiringly. The largest of them was in
the very act of rising for a forward bound when
something struck him upon the neck, just above
the shoulder.
There had been a faint whizzing and whir-
ring in the air. It began behind the cabbage-
palm and went out sidewise and upward,
through the air, while something dimly visible
Cashed away in a wide, sweeping curve. Up,
up, up, went the whiz and whirl, and then
down, down, after a strange, mysterious fashion,
closely accompanied by another, just like it.
Then there was a thud, thud,-and the great
kangaroo did not make his leap. He rolled
over and over in the grass, for one of those
wonderful missiles had actually broken his neck.
And another kangaroo had fallen also.
"Hugh! Hugh! exclaimed Ned, in a tone
of intense excitement. "Boomerangs!"
Boomerangs responded Hugh. Oh,
Ned! They must have been thrown by black-
fellows! Everybody thinks there are none of
them around here "
"We must n't let 'em know we are here,"
said Ned.
"What if they find the camp! gasped Hugh.
"Look," replied Ned. "Here come the
other two kangaroos!"
"Don't shoot!" said Hugh, for Ned was
raising his gun. "The bushmen will know
we 're here."
But for all that he also cocked both hammers
of his gun.
There was no time for cool counsel, but the
boys might not have fired if it had not been for
the reckless conduct of those escaping kan-
With long, flying, frightened leaps, the un-
hurt pair dashed frantically toward the nearest
cover-the very bushes where Ned and Hugh
were hiding.


They are coming right for us !" said Hugh.
"The blackfellows will find us, anyhow."
The kangaroos were thinking only of getting
away from the yelling black dangers that sprang
out from behind the cabbage-palm. Near as
they now came to the boys, they were not easy
marks for any one but a very good shot. Crash,
crash, crash, they came dashing into the dense
barrier of the bushes and underbrush.
Bang, bang, went the ringing reports of two
guns, for Hugh followed Ned's excited example.
"We 've bagged 'em both! said Ned.

: :" '.-' o- ,

Yes," said Hugh, we have them. But now
.- Pt

those black cannibals know.we are here."
"They don't know how many there are of
us," said Ned. Look at them."
The foremost black men had been almost
upon their game when the gun reports reached
their ears; and it looked as if all but one of
them had been instantly killed, so suddenly did
they drop into the grass where they stood, and
lie still.
"Let 's get away," said Ned, "while our
chance is good. Why they have vanished like
magic! "
The undulating level of rich grass did not
seem to have one living creature upon its
"They will lie there a while," began Hugh,

but Ned interrupted him suddenly, in a tone
of intense anxiety:
No, they won't! See the tops of that grass
quiver, out yonder? One of them 's playing
snake. You and I must get out of this, and be
quick about it! "
That's so," exclaimed Hugh; "but as Bob
McCracken's been saying ever since we left
the Grampians, you 're a born scout. I 'd
never have noticed that grass."
"Don't you see?" said Ned. "He 's snak-
ing toward these bushes. As soon as he gets

". -,.

;AIri'i ..

IN k


under cover he '11 come after us. Come along !
We must move quickly! "
The boys were in a perfect tremble of excite-
ment. Each slipped a fresh cartridge into his
gun, and the horses were unhitched and led
up to where the two kangaroos lay. They
were smaller than the pair that had fallen
under the boomerangs, for the black hunters
had taken their choice. Still, it was a heavy
lift for the boys to raise their unexpected prizes
and to fasten them on the horses.
Hugh's rosy face, as he did so, wore only a
look of boyish exuberance, without a shadow
of fear; but he exclaimed: Now, Ned, they 'll
follow us. Anyhow, we 've seen how the black-
fellows throw their boomerangs!"
Ned's movements seemed to be a trifle


quicker than Hugh's, and he also appeared
warier and cooler.
We can get away," he said, while that fel-
low in the grass is working around to find out
about us. What would n't I give to know
where the camp is! "
It can't be so very far," said Hugh; and
then the smile left his face as he added, Our
people don't dream of there being any black-
fellows in this neighborhood. It 's awful that
we can't go in and warn them."
"They have the dogs," said Ned, as he
urged his horse forward. "They can't be sur-
prised. FVe are in a fix, though."
"We have something to eat, now, anyway,"
said Hugh. We won't starve if we are lost in
the bush."
"With blackfellows ready to spear us," said
Ned, "as soon as we stop anywhere long enough
to cook and eat!"
"We can fight any small squad of them,"
said Hugh, combatively.
I 'd rather fight blackfellows than so many
American Indians," replied Ned. I guess
they can't do much with boomerangs in the
They can use them pretty well," said Hugh,
and they can skulk around and throw spears
and clubs."
"We must push right along," said Ned.
"Keep in the open places. We '11 beat them."
The quivering motion in the tops of the
prairie-grass had indeed been made by the
snake-like passage of a savage body. It was
altogether remarkable, too, how rapidly that
short, bony, emaciated blackfellow could crawl;
but he could not keep pace with a man walking,
much less a nimble-footed Australian horse. He
reached the line of bushes, at some distance
from the spot where the boys had been lurking,
and then he sprang to his feet. He could go
faster after that, but he advanced with noiseless
caution, for he had no idea how many enemies
might be near him, besides the two who had
been firing. It was only a few minutes, however,
as he drew nearer to the exact spot, before his
black eyes began to glisten with a strange, fierce
light; his lips drew back, disclosing the rows of
large, white teeth; and his whole body quiv-
ered, as those of the two boomerang-throwers

had quivered just as they were making their
casts. He felt much as a wild beast feels when
about to spring. He made no sound until,
as he peered fiercely out from behind a bush, it
flashed upon his keen, instinctive intelligence
that the men who had fired the guns were gone.
He darted out of his bushy cover. Swift and
searching were the glances of his glittering eyes,
and they did not miss a token that Ned or
Hugh had left. He noted the footmarks; the
bloody ground where the kangaroos had fallen;
the trail made by the two horses as they went
away; and then he raised his head.
A sound went out through the air and floated
toward the cabbage-palm. It sounded as if it
might have been the cry of a distant bird. It
might almost have been the sigh of a wind
among the trees; but it must have had some
peculiar meaning, for the blackfellows who
had been lying hidden in the grass, out in the
prairie, were instantly upon their feet, racing
swiftly to join their comrade in the bushes.

At that very moment but several miles away,
a very different kind of sound seemed to be
hunting, hunting, hunting around among the
trees. It came from different human voices,
and in all of them it was both inquiring and
Coo-ee-e ? Coo-ee-e ? Coo-ee-e ?"
The several voices were not answering one
another, apparently, but each was asking the
whereabouts of some one who did not as yet
hear or answer. They grew more and more
anxiously questioning, as the deeper or shriller-
toned "coo-ee-es" vainly rose and fell among
the silent shadows of the endless forest.
Coo-ee-e Oh, Aunt Maude I can't call
any more But hear the men. I wish the boys
could hear them !"
"Helen! Your pony!"
He was a spirited, handsome little fellow, and
while Helen's earnest blue eyes searched among
the trees the pony's forefeet left the ground and
he made a sudden leap over a fallen tree.
"Helen! Be careful!"
There was apparently no need for her aunt
to caution her, for she followed every move-
ment of the pony as if she had been part of
him. So did Lady Parry keep her own place,



in the saddle of the larger and more powerful
animal which carried her over the same barrier.
On horseback, or anywhere else, she was always
a very stately, self-possessed, and dignified lady.
Keep right on, Helen," she said. "I must
know what they are going to do next. We
must find those boys!"

tain was taking an interest in the matter and
was shouting: Coo-ee-e ? Coo-ee-e ?"
A moment later, a man on horseback rode
out under the trees at the water's edge. It
was Sir Frederick Parry, and he called to one
of his men, near by:
"I can't coo-ee-e any more, but I wish those


Oh, it is dreadful! replied Helen.
They both looked pale, pained almost
frightened, as they rode on, and they were
all the while peering intently through the spaces
of the forest, and listening.
No, no," remarked Lady Maude, again and
again; there is no answer."
Only a short ride beyond them there was a
vast, frowning wall of granite rock, rising almost
perpendicularly, hundreds of feet above the
tallest trees. At the foot of this wall, there
rolled and tumbled and gurgled a torrent of
clear water. Across the stream and against the
rock went call after call; and they were thrown
back among the tree-tops as if the very moun-

boys would turn up. Do you think we 're get-
ting nearer to them, Bob ? "
Yes, sir," replied a very respectful voice, a
little behind him. "Yes, sir. They 'll turn
up before long, sir. Had n't we better go into
camp, sir? We 've had a pretty long march,
since morning, sir."
"Right away, Bob. We '11 camp here."
"Coo-ee-e!" called Bob, as he dropped
lightly from his horse. He raised his voice
once more, in a different kind of cry, well
known to the herdsmen, but he did not have
to repeat it. Replies came at once from sev-
eral other directions, as well as from the
echoing mountain.




F -



FOR years I had hoped to visit the Indian
Territory before the rush of homesteaders had
settled the country to such an extent as to put
an end to the native wildness of the region
and people. My opportunity came at last, and
during a certain September vacation the trip
was made. The experience of the first day
was enough to convince me that the place was
still wild enough to satisfy any one in search of
the uncivilized.
With an Indian trader, his wife, and little
boy, I left Arkansas City one morning at about
ten o'clock. After an hour's ride we alighted
from the train at Ponca, a station on the Ponca
reservation. There we expected to find a light
wagon in which to finish our journey; for our

destination, Kama-hatsa (Gray Horse), was
about thirty miles from this, the nearest rail-
road-station. After a wait of an hour longer,
our friend arrived with the conveyance, and just
at noon we started on our ride across the coun-
try. Soon we reached the Arkansas River.
Although recently swollen, it was apparently
fordable, and we started to cross. Had not
our driver been well acquainted.with the river
our trip would have abruptly terminated
there. We drove up, then down, then across.
At times the water ran into the body of the
wagon; again we were in a quicksand, and the
horses plunged and staggered. The wheels
would grind and grate over the sand, the wagon
would roll and toss until we were almost

.. t


* -


thrown out, and then, with a sudden lurch, all
would come right side up again, and we would
move on.
We had just reached the opposite bank
when, looking back, we saw two men in a
wagon rather smaller than the one in which
we were riding and drawn by a team of little
Indian ponies. They had just struck the deep
channel, and the horses, all covered but their
heads, were struggling along, sometimes swim-
ming, sometimes just getting a foothold. Their
wagon also was covered, so that all that was
visible was two horses' heads, and then, just
behind them, the two men apparently seated
upon the water. We soon forgot our former
fright in watching them; for, though we sympa-
thized with them, it was really a ludicrous sight.
Driving across the bottom-land, we passed

through seas of grass which was higher than
our heads, even as we sat in the wagon. The
sudden gusts of wind set the grass to bowing
and bending; the tall sunflowers welcomed us
with polite salaamss," but the long whip-like
lashes of the wire-grass gave stinging cuts
across our faces.
A dim haziness spreading over the sky now
attracted our attention, and I felt a sudden
sinking of the heart as I remembered that this
was the season when the great prairie-fires
are common. In such a place as that a fire
meant certain death. The haze assumed a
reddish tinge, the air seemed oppressive and
stifling, and we knew that danger was near.
We hoped we might avoid the direct path of
the flames, but the hope was a faint one, for
the whole country seemed to be ablaze. As


. i,


- --


far as the eye could see, dense columns of
smoke showed the presence of the fire, in all
We whipped up the horses and drove toward
the upland, thinking thus to escape the greatest
danger. We reached the high ground before
meeting any flame, and we were greatly re-
joiced to see that much of the grass was still
fairly green here, though thickly bestrewn with
patches of longer grass that was dry.
The fierce flames now approached, rushing
along with furious speed, crackling and snap-
ping-the sound alone being sufficient to strike
terror to the stoutest heart. Galloping along
the line of fire, we found that where it crossed a
little ravine the flames were not so high, for
the grass was quite green there. We dashed
through the line of flame, suffering brief tor-
tures of suffocation, and a severe stinging and
smarting of our eyes, caused by the intense heat
and pungent smoke.
Once through, we congratulated ourselves on
the hope that we should yet escape; for, going
in this direction, right in the teeth of the wind,
we could travel more rapidly than the pursuing
While passing through the fire, I recalled the
proverb It 's an ill wind that blows nobody
good," for just in advance of the line of flame
clouds of swallows darted here and there, catch-
ing the hosts of insects started up by the heat
of the burning grass.
We now heard galloping hoofs, and we soon
saw two Indians (Osages) approaching through
the smoke. "Where are you going?" they
asked, in their own language. "To Gray
Horse," our driver replied, in the same tongue.
They told him that the prairie was a mass of
flame in that direction, and that we must go
back. We responded that all was flame in
that direction. Notwithstanding the indiffer-
ence to danger usually ascribed to redskins,
these Indians showed unmistakable signs of
terror. Some further quick conversation in-
formed us that they, like ourselves, had seized
an opportunity to penetrate the line of flame,
thinking thus to escape.
We all were now inclosed in a gradually
narrowing ring of fire. To clear the space
around us by burning off the grass-to start a

"back-fire," as it is called--was our only
chance for safety; and this we attempted. A
large space was cleared before the oncoming
fire reached us. We hoped to escape with
but singed eyebrows, and a few moments of
suffocation; and this we would have considered
a fortunate deliverance. But we found our
last chance failing us. The back-fire we had
started against the wind had burned only the
dry grass, and in doing this had served as a
furnace to dry the greener grass. Thus the
prairie-fire, reaching our burned district, found
the greener grasses killed and dried, and hence
had almost as much fuel as outside.
The fire was now close around us. The
varying currents of air heated by the flame
whirled and rose, and gusts of cold air, rush-
ing in to replace the hot air, caused a whirl-
wind, and a great well of smoke and flame
was thus formed. Within this well we stood,
as yet unharmed and with a constant supply
of cool air, but expecting death.
It was a dreadful moment: the mother and
child were crying, the Indians, with uplifted
arms, were calling upon the Great Spirit, in a
weird chant.
Suddenly we felt an unusually strong rush
of cold air from one side, and looking up, I
saw a strange and welcome sight. A long
tongue of flame had run toward and into our
circular prison from the main fire, and had
burned a lane from the outlying burnt area in
to us. Through this lane, formed by walls of
fire, came rushing in a current of cold, clear
air. This kept the smoke blown away, and
we saw plainly the path of escape thus prov-
identially afforded us, when all hope seemed
Our horses had been paralyzed with fear,
and had hardly moved a muscle after the near
approach of the flames. Now they could not
be induced to move. But quicker than thought
each Indian cast off his blanket, and enveloped
his horse's head. Then they grasped the
bridles, jumped upon the horses' backs, and
dashed out through the avenue of escape that
had opened before us. We followed, with a
rush, and soon found ourselves in safety.
The Indians rode rapidly away, staying for
neither thanks nor presents. It was with


I'- 'r

:t ,


thankful hearts that we drove into Gray runner of what was to come, I would have
Horse, about ten o'clock that night; and I been wiser to leave "wild scenes" to those
thought that if my first experience was a fore- better fitted to cope with them.

VOL. XX.--O.

(An Oriental Fantasy.)


ONE sultry summer evening in the eight hun-
dred and seventieth year of the Mohammedan
era, the renowned Caliph Haroun Al Huck-
El-Berri, of Bagdad, sat frowning amid his
The royal divan was fashioned of ruddy gold,
thick-studded with virgin pearls. Overhead
was an exquisite carved dome of ivory and
ebony, radiant with the rosy glow of swaying
brazen lamps and tall wax candles. Rich
carpets of silk and velvet were scattered over
the jasper floor, which reflected the alabaster
columns. Tables inlaid with mother-of-pearl
were spread with rare and aromatic viands,
while the shimmering breezes were cooled and
faintly perfumed by fountains of rose-water.
But, in spite of all this surrounding splendor,
the Caliph of Bagdad was unmistakably as cross
as two sticks, and champed his teeth savagely.
Through the open windows stole the silvery
song of the nightingale and the sleepy trill of
the belated bulbul in the orange-grove beyond
the courtyard; and from the high gallery en-
trancing strains of music swept, above which
arose the mellow snore of the Grand Vizir,
snoozing among the damask cushions, with a
copy of the Bagdad Herald over his face.
And yet, with a fierce frown upon his pale
brow, the Caliph pored over the dog-eared
pages of his primary geography.
Suddenly he closed the book with a bang.
By the six white hairs upon the tail of the
Prophet's mule!" quoth he, "these be strange
tales indeed that the unlettered giaours of the
West are telling the wise men of the East! Can
it be possible that the whole Persian system of
eclectic geography is in error? I must inves-
tigate this matter. Selim!" he cried imperiously
to the Grand Vizir, who scrambled to his
sleepy feet with a frightened start, "summon
the Seven Sages of Bagdad and the Commis-
sioner of Public Schools!"

The Sages were summoned instantly.
Bah! You high-salaried indolents!" sternly
hissed the Caliph, "I 've a great notion to dis-
charge you all! Are n't you ashamed to let
the pale-faced Franks of Spain get ahead of
you ?"
"Illustrious Sun of the Noonday !" faltered
the oldest among them, what means this sud-
den tempest out of a clear sky ? The Frankish
philosophers do not know even the things that
we have forgotten. They are but followers
in our footsteps. We have taught them all
they know."
"Oh, have you ?" roared the Caliph. Per-
haps, then, ye knew that the world is round ? "
"Oh, your Majesty!" gasped the Sages in
chorus, hurriedly endeavoring to restore their
paralyzed faculties with their smelling-salts,
"what sort of a fairy-tale is this ?"
"Fairy-tale!" roared the Caliph. Marry,
come up! Don't ye ever read the newspapers?
Have ye not heard that there has arisen in the
West a wild, strange, white-haired man who
saith that the world is round like an orange or
a ball? If ye did not know it, why have ye not
found it out long ago? And if ye did know
it, why have ye not told me of it before this ?
Tell me," cried the Caliph in an awful, blood-
curdling tone, "tell me, ye ignoramuses, is the
world round or flat ? "
The Sages fell prostrate upon the gleaming
floor, and bumped their aged heads against the
tiles in despair. This riddle was too much for
them; they had to give it up.
With a cruel glitter in his eagle eye the
Caliph cried to the Chief Chamberlain: Has-
san, lock these gentlemen up in the pantry in-
stantly, and be very careful that not one escapes.
I will give them fifteen minutes in which to tell
me positively whether the world be round or
flat, or give some immediately practicable me-
thod of finding out."


The massive, burnished copper door closed
with a dismal clang upon the unfortunate and
despairing Sages; while the School Commis-
sioner, arriving just in time to hear the latter
part of the conversation from the hall-door,
took to his heels, and did not stop until he was
three miles beyond the city limits and hidden
under a haystack.
Then the court waited in ominous silence, as
the sand in the hour-glass trickled out the
swiftly passing moments. The horizon began
to look very squally for the Seven Sages of

said the Vizir, warily refusing to commit him-
self further. "I see clearly."
"Well then ?" said the Caliph, expectantly,
looking at Selim.
"Well then ?" said Selim, dubiously, looking
at the Caliph, and edging toward the door.
"Pshaw! Thou dolt! Dost thou not see
that if this world be indeed round like this
orange, a man may ride around it and return
whence he started ? Bismillah! I have solved
the problem myself! Aha! I will fool these
laggard, hesitating Franks; and while King
Ferdinand hesitates to furnish funds for a fleet,


The Caliph sat sullenly upon the divan, play-
ing with an orange. Suddenly he gave a start,
and an immense white smile illuminated his
swarthy features. "Selim!" he called, "look
here, my boy! If this world be indeed round,
as this imaginative mariner from Genoa de-
clares, it will not be so difficult to prove, me-
The Vizir eyed the Caliph with suspicion.
"If I begin here," continued the Caliph,
placing his index finger upon the orange, and
move onward, my finger soon passes completely
around the orange and returns to the point
whence it started. Dost thou see?"
"Verily, your majesty, I am not blind!"

I will show this audacious Christoval Colon
that he is but a semicolon after all. I will ride
about the world myself, this very night, and
thou shalt go with me, Selim; thou shalt go with
me, and we will ride around the world! Make
haste, and call up the camels. Hurrah! We
are going around the world!"
"Oh, we are, are we? muttered Selim, with
chattering teeth, as he hurriedly shuffled down
the back stairs to the stable, to harness up the
royal equipage. "Around the world, indeed ?
Who wants to fall over the edge into nothing ?
Not Selim! Well, I should say not! Not if
Selim knows it! "
Then followed a scene of wild excitement,


some hurrying hither and
thither, some scurrying
backward and forward,
some running round and
round, and some running
nowhere at all; while
hoarse voices shouted,
camels snorted, horses
neighed, and countless 'i
dogs barked until the
whole city was in an
uproar. Drums beat,
spears swayed madly
overhead, standards flap-
ped frantically upon their -
swaying staves, dark ..
faces gleamed with sav-
age excitement from
under snowy turbans.
And then came a wilder "IF THE WORLD
clang from the deafen-
ing cymbals, a louder fanfare from the brazen-
throated trumpets, and a mighty shout from
the throats of the excited populace. "Hail to
the Caliph! Hail, all hail! For he is going
around the world! "
The royal band then struck up "Marching
Through Persia," the small boys turned cart-
wheels along the gutter, and the procession
moved on through the streets of Bagdad.
Beyond the city gates the caravan halted.
"Your royal highness," asked Selim the Vi-
zir, "which way shall we start-north, east,
south, or west?"
"Hum--m-m!" mused the Caliph, strok-
ing his beard thoughtfully, and getting out his
railroad map of the Eastern Hemisphere.
"Hum-m-m!" resumed the Caliph, af-
ter a short study, "we will not go to the
west; for Ferdinand and Isabella would be
sure to see us marching past their house, and
I want to surprise them by getting all the way
around before they know anything about it.
And we will not go to the east, because we
should get too close to the sun when it rises in
the morning, and might perhaps be sunstruck.
And if we go to the south we shall have to
ford the Indian Ocean. But I don't like to
wade, and the stones hurt my bare feet, so I
think we won't go south. Hum-m-m!


That leaves only one other direction to go!
Well then, we will go in that direction. Ho,
Gaifar! he called with a ringing voice to the
drum-major at the head of the procession,
"March straight for the North Star!"
Then he went sound asleep, as Gaifar tossed
his baton high in the air, caught it as it fell,
gave a triple flip-flap to the right, a double
flub-dub to the left, and thirteen twirls around
his little finger. The band struck up, and the
cavalcade headed across the broad, sandy plain,
straight for the North Star.
.As the hills along the horizon drew nearer
and nearer, the Grand Vizir broke into a
cold perspiration. As he stood erect, cran-
ing his long neck above the clouds of dust,
he could see the far sky curve down, down,
down on the other side of those purple moun-
tain-peaks. "Ugh-h-h!" he gasped, with
a shudder of terror. Something must be
done, and right away, too! There is the end
of the world, and we '11 all fall off and be
smashed, sure! "
Galloping in palpitating haste to the side of
the drum-major, he whispered with terrible im-
pressiveness, "Gaifar, what do you know about
astronomy ?"
"I? Nothing! said Gaifar, surprised.
"Oo-oo-ooh!" groaned the Vizir, pull-

ing a long face, I should not like to be in plain, the caravan again faced the North Star,
your shoes when the Caliph wakes!" and, from the other side of the city, was actu-
"Why not? cried Gaifar, anxiously, ally marching straight back into Bagdad.
But the crafty Vizir made no reply. At this juncture the first-cornet player of
"Gaifar," he whispered sepulchrally again, the band stubbed his toe. In his excitement
"did you ever study bacteriology?" he blew a blast so loud, so shrill, and so dis-
N-no," gasped Gaifar, with startled eyes. cordant that it pierced the ears of the Caliph.
The Vizir groaned again in such an awful Waking with a start, he looked about him,
tone that it chilled the very marrow of the poor dazed. Then perceiving the minarets of the
drum-major's bones, city, he called furiously for the Grand Vizir,
"Oo-oo-oo-ooh!" groaned the Vizir, until who answered on a gallop.
Gaifar fairly shook in his buckled shoes. You "Thou dog, why hast thou dared to disobey
will never be able to keep us all from falling off my command ? thundered the Caliph.
the under side of earth into nowhere when we Disobey thy command, Sire ? What dost
go over the edge! thou mean ? exclaimed the Vizir, with well-
"What can I do ?" moaned Gaifar, piteously. simulated amazement.
"Humph chuckled the Vizir. "Just give What do I mean? What do I mean? "
me your baton, and go climb up into the band- screamed the Caliph. Why are we marching
wagon and help beat the bass-drum. I will toward Bagdad, you villain ?"
lead this procession myself." Bagdad? Bagdad ? said the Vizir, look-
With a sigh of relief Gaifar slunk out of sight, ing at the Caliph as if in great surprise at the
and the Vizir waved
the baton aloft with a
crafty look in his eye.
Tramp, tramp, tramp,
went the horses' hoofs.
Puff, puff, puff, strode
the cushioned camels
through the sand. But I
the Caliph slept like a
top through it all. He
was not going to let a .
little thing like riding '
around the world in- '
terfere with his regular --- 1'
sleep. Not he! But I -" '
the sly Vizir, ever wildly
waving his baton, shout-
ing, "Onward, en avant,
vorwdrts!" and inciting I,
haste, until every one.---
behind him in the
procession was utterly
blinded by the choking
dust, swept out of the -
beaten track in a great
curve, round and round, THE VIZIR WAVED THE BATON ALOFT."
curve, round and round,
so gradually, so very gradually, that not one question. "Why, your royal highness, we sighted
noticed it-round and round until, after de- Bagdad a good three hours ago. We must be
scribing an immense semicircle through the pretty nearly around the world! "


Goodness gracious me !" cried the Caliph,
in a fever of excitement. You don't say so ?
Why did n't you wake me up when we were
down on the under side ? I might have fallen
and disarranged some of the stars! Why,
Selim," he exclaimed enthusiastically, looking
at his watch, "we shall be back to Bagdad in
time for breakfast! "
Indeed ?" said the Vizir, with a smile that
meant as much as four ordinary smiles. "Why,

And the townspeople, wakened out of their
sound slumbers by the sound of the shouting,
plunged into their trousers in fright, threw up
their windows, hurled back the shutters, and
asked where the fire was, until, learning the
cause of the uproar, all Bagdad joined in a
mighty shout of acclaim, Hail to the Caliph!
Hail! For the world is round, and he has rid-
den around it! "
Instantly, upon reaching the palace, the


that is so! Even now, methinks, I hear the
Bagdad town-clock striking four o'clock in the
As he spoke the far-away boom of the great
bell tolled across the plain, and the roosters be-
gan to crow in the barn-yards along the way.
Just as day dawned in the East the head of
the procession entered the great gate of Bagdad
in triumph, the Caliph and the Grand Vizir
riding in state, behind snow-white palfreys;
while far in advance ran heralds shouting in
stentorian voices, "Make way for the Caliph!
For the world is round, and he has ridden
around it! Way for the Caliph!"

Caliph in exultation called for his swiftest mes-
sengers and despatched them to the geography
publishers with the amazing tidings. Tell
them," said he, "that the world is round and
ridgy like a muskmelon; and that Persia runs
completely around it in one direction, and
pretty nearly around it in the other!"
Now," sighed the Caliph, with a satisfied
smile, "we will have our breakfast."
"And, your royal highness," murmured the
Vizir, "perhaps it might not be a bad idea, as
a celebration of your achievement, to let the
Seven Sages out of the pantry, so that they
may hear that the world is round."


A Year with Dolly

B3 eudora S. B'umstead.

SDoctor Mama knows what to do
d '" When qirls and dollies are trouble;
SWith needle and thread and a bottle of tue
Sly ])olly' strenh she has doubled .
S But she never can make her new and bright
ITrn almost ashamed to show her. -
If Santa Claus could See her to-night
1 I don't suppose he would Know her.

- --

"lama has ,said if I learn to be
A careful, ind little mother,
lHe surely will notice the change in me,
And maybe he'll bring me another;
But,dear lit e Dolly, you need not care
Nor be jealous one bit if I For tho' you may never be quite so fair,
I'll only love you. the better.

Ground the Corn.

(A Dutch Child-song.)

'S-,et up de klenk--
'' i Tivy rivy teckaras denk.
He came to the windmill. "Wife," said he,
., "No wind comes over the Zuyder Zee;
---- Go up and whirl the mill-wheel round
--' Till the corn is ground-the corn is ground."
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk-
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.
Then up she went, the wheels went round,
The corn was ground-the corn was ground;
The night came on, the day was done,
Still round and round the mill-wheel spun,
And Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk--
Tivy rivy teckaras denk. I\

Si. She ground all night, she ground all day-
In piles around the meal-sacks lay;
And none of all the folks could tell
How she ground so fast, and ground so well.
So Hinkadepenk
-- l Set up de klenk-
Tivy rivy tekaras denk.



He sat at ease by the windmill door,
And smoked his meerschaum o'er and o'er:
"Wife! look over the Zuyder Zee-
What do you see-what do you see?"
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk-
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.

"I see a ship like a little speck;
A gallant Prince is on the deck.
The sea is still-there is no blast,
Yet the ship sails fast-the ship sails fast."
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk-
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.


S On the san
The Prince
JHe came a
And Hinka

dy beach, so bare and brown,
leaped down-the Prince leaped

nd stood by the windmill door,
depenk was frightened sore.
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk-
Tizy rivy teckaras denk.

For the Prince in a voice of anger spoke-
"You sit and smoke! You sit and smoke!
From morn till night, from night till morn,
Your poor old wife grinds all the corn!"
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk--
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.


Then Hinkadepenk he took by the hand,
And danced him a jig through all the land; -
From Rotterdam to the far Voorn6- '
Like the wind went he--like the wind went he.
And Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk--
Tivy rivy leckaras denk.


dem town-
Over the meadows and over the
From land to sea and from sea to
-----the land.
And Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk -
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.

.mill door.

His pipe was broken, his coat was torn,
His face forlorn-his face forlorn-
Then Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk -
Tivy rivy teckaras denk. -


" Go up," said the Prince, "and grind for
your life,
And give some rest to your poor old wife!
If ever again I come to the mill,
You '11 take a journey longer still!"
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk--
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.


1 -X I I .
T% His wife, an easy life leads she,
As she sits and looks on the Zuyder Zee-
For Hinkadepenk went up in the mill
To grind the corn, and he 's grinding still.
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk --
S eTivy rivy leckaras denk.

From morn till night, from night till morn,
He is grinding corn -he is grinding corn;
He fears to -stop forevermore,
Lest the Prince should come to the wind-
mill door.
So Hinkadepenk
Set up de klenk -
Tivy rivy teckaras denk.


So Hin ka- de penk Set up de kIenk,

Ti vy, ri vy, too ka ras denk.


When it comes the first time, I so enjoy my feathers;
After that I 'm used to it, and do not mind at all.
One can fly about, and keep warm so in all weathers;
I 've a snuggery, too, in the ivy on the wall.

"When the seeds are gone-and they're not before
I can still find spiders and flies on sunny days;
And I 've all the lovely summer to remember;
My old friends are here, and they know my little ways.
Just as soon as ever the ground is frozen tightly,
All those nice kind creatures in the houses throw us
One forgets it 's winter, when the sun is shining
I 'm content to stay here, and take it as it comes."

DEAR JACK: Here is a picture that may be used to
discover what your friends would like for Christmas,
without letting them know that you have found out their
Copy upon separate cards this series of names:


"Don't you think December 's
Pleasanter than May?"

THE Little Schoolma'am says a well-known poet,
Mr. T. B. Aldrich by name, has put this question
to you young folk in some cheery verses, and left
you to settle it for yourselves. Answer it as pleases
you, my dears,-not forgetting that if May has
the bloom o' the year and the flowers, and the
rosy blossoms glowing in the sun, December has
the gleaming frost, the snow and ice, and the
beautiful Christmas-tide-the one great Day of
all days; the season when the joy of giving illu-
mines everything and everybody. Happy, indeed,
should be the month that holds Christmas in its
But, as to that question of May and December,
my birds have something to say, I find. Here is
a little confab about it between the bluebird and
the sparrow, faithfully reported for you-and in
verse, too -by our friend, Margaret Vandegrift:
"ARE N'T you going South? said the bluebird to the
"Winter's almost here, and we 're clearing up to go.
Not a seed is left on the goldenrod or yarrow,
And I heard the farmer say, 'It feels like snow!'
I can recommend it, the place to which we 're going;
There 's a rainy season, to be sure, but what of that?
Not a bit of ice, and it never thinks of snowing,
And the fruit so plentiful one can't help getting fat! "

"Yes, I 've heard about it," to the bluebird said the
sparrow ;
"And it's quite the fashion to go traveling, I know;
People who don't do it are looked upon as narrow.'
Bless you! I don't care! And I 'm not afraid of snow.

Jewel-case, Unto watch, I.

Jewel-case, x.
Cane, 2.
Fishing-tackle, 3.
Hoop, 4.
Rattle, 5.
Velocipede, 6.
Jack-straws, 7.
Rocking-horse, 8.
Lawn-tennis set, 9.
Air-balloon, no.

Gtold watch, I.
Pocket-book, 2.
Air-gun, 3.
Wax doll, 4.
Flannel rabbit, 5.
Toy boat, 6.
Battledore and shut-
tlecock, 7.
Whip, 8.
Writing-desk, 9.
Blow-Eun. 1o.

Cologne, x.
Driving-gloves, 2.
Bat and ball, 3.
Set of toy furniture, 4.
Milk-pitcher, 5.
Tin sword, 6.
Cup and ball, 7.
Roller-skates, 8.
Box of water-colors, 9.
China doll, to.

Inkstand, i. Diary, x. Brooch, i.
Foils, 2. Boxing-gloves, 2. Shot-gun, 2.
Foot-ball, 3. Camera, 3. Box of tools, 3.
Doll's carnage, 4. Play-house, 4. Kaleidoscope, 4.
Lace cap, 5. Little bracelets, 5. Necklace, 5.
Belt, 6. Marbles, 6. Tops, 6.
Dissected map, 7. Paper dolls, 7. Toy piano, 7.
Picture-book, 8. Toy soldiers, 8. Wagon, 8.
Opera-glasses, 9. Smelling-bottle, 9. Lace handkerchief, 9.
Drum, so. Elastic ball, xo. Funny little toy mon-
key, io.
Umbrella, i. Ear-rings, I. Gloves, i.
Silk hat, 2. Ulster, 2. Blacking outfit, 2.
Printing-press, 3. Canoe, 3. Skates, 3.
Doll's tea-set, 4. Scarf, 4. Sewing-case, 4.
Silver spoon, 5. Baby jumper, 5. Little chair, 5.
Kite, 6. Rubber boots, 6. Helmet, 6.
Skipping-rope, 7. Toy stove, 7. Tricycle, 7.
Bow-gun, 8. Humming-top, 8. Bicycle, 8.
Parasol, 9. Chatelaine, 9. Toilet set, 9.
Goat, to. Hobby-horse, 10. India-rubber toys, 10o
Card-case, i. Noah's ark, 6.

Dress-suit, 2. Pug-dog, 7.
Story-book, 3. Roller-skates, 8.
Doll's wardrobe, 4. Fan, 9.
Baby carriage, 5. Jumping-jack, io.

Take a set of ten envelops and mark them A, B, C,
and so on up to J- one letter to each envelop.
Now your friend selects a card that contains the name
of the present he prefers, places the card in the envelop
marked with the initial of the last present named on that
card, and places the envelop on the picture with a cor-
ner touching that stocking which is in the same order
(from left to right) as his chosen present is in the list on
the card he has selected.
Thus, there are on each card 10 presents, and there
are o1 stockings. If he has chosen the third present he
puts the envelop touching the third stocking; fifth pres-
ent, fifth stocking.
The second series of cards, which here follows,



Jewel-case. Cane. Fishing-tackle.
Gold watch. Pocket-book. Air-gun.
Cologne. Driving-gloves. Bat and ball.
Inkstand. Foils. Foot-ball.
Diary. I. Boxing-gloves. 2. Camera. 3.
Brooch. Shot-gun. Box of tools.
Umbrella. Silk hat. Printing-press.
Ear-rings. Ulster. Canoe.
Gloves. Blacking outfit. Skates.
Card-case. Dress-suit. Story-book.

Wax doll.
Set of toy furniture.
Doll's carriage.
Play-house. 4.
Doll's tea-set.
Doll's wardrobe.

Flannel rabbit.
Lace cap.
Little bracelets. 5.
Silver spoon.
Baby jumper.'
Little chair.
Baby carriage.

Jack-straws. Dissected map.
Battledoreand shut- Paper dolls.
tlecock. Toy piano.
Cup and ball.

Toy boat.
Tin sword.
Rubber boots.
Noah's ark.
Toy stove.
Tricycle. 7.

Toy soldiers.

Lawn-tennis set.
Box of water-colors.
Smelling-bottle. g.
Lace handkerchief.
Toilet set.

China doll.
Elastic ball.
Funny little toy mon-
key. 1o.
India-rubber toys.

is your secret key. The stocking chosen tells you which
key card to consult, and the envelop letter tells you which
on that card has been chosen,-A being I; B, 2; and so
on. Envelop G, near the sixth stocking, would mean
seventh present on sixth card, and so on. You need not
explain the trick, but can tell your friends mysteriously
that Santa Claus will know what they want if they will
only follow directions. Yours truly, J. C. BEARD.

-- -I


IN the September number of ST. NICHOLAS the pic-
ture on page 824, entitled Hickory Dickory Dock,"
was wrongly credited in the Contents to Mrs. Dorothea
Lummis. At Mrs. Lummis's request we gladly correct
the error, and give the credit to Miss Lucie B. Salter, of
Portsmouth, N. H., who made the original photograph
from which our picture is engraved.

DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: Iam a little girl of twelve years
old, who lives 'way out in Russia. I am an American,
not a Russian. We have lived here in St. Petersburg for
seven years, but we are going home next autumn.
We have n't very many pets, but some of them are very
funny. We have got a dog, but he is very old now; he
used to be great fun. Then we have two young rab-
bits, two guinea-pigs, and three birds.
We have taken you for a very long time, and I have
only once seen a letter from St. Petersburg, and that was
written by my brother.
In summer we live out of town, and have very good
boating, bathing, and driving.
I don't go to school, but have lessons at home with a
governess, and learn four languages: Russian, German,
French, and English; but Russian is by far the hardest.
I have been collecting stamps over two years, and have
got nearly a thousand.
I remain your loving reader, A R--

DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I am a little girl, twelve years
old, and my father is in the army.
This is a very beautiful place, and a great many people
visit here in summer. Some of the objects of interest
are the library, riding-hall, and gymnasium. There is
also a little point containing trophies of the wars, which
is called Trophy Point. From our house we have a beau-
tiful view of the Hudson and Constitution Island, where
Miss Warner lives.
I am your constant reader, HELEN L. K-

DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I am a page the i Senate, and
am on duty at the Capitol from 9 A. M. until the Senate
adjourns, which is about 5 or half-past 5 P. M., or earlier
when there is not much business on hand.
From a few minutes after 9 until 12 noon, there is
nothing much for us to do, but after 12, which is the
hour the Senate meets, until it adjourns, we have plenty
of work attending to the Senators' wants and going on
A good many of the pages there are fifteen are get-
ting autograph-books filled, for themselves or friends;
and just before the session we cannot get them after the
Senate meets -you can see the boys, with books big as
themselves, sometimes, going round to the Senators to get
them to write in them.
A good while ago some of us organized a mock sen-

ate, and we used to go up behind the document-room,"
where all the books and papers of the Senate are kept.
We used to hold sessions and make speeches without
number up there among the documents, until at last we
grew tired of it, and adjourned it "sine die," or forever.
Please receive the best wishes from
Your devoted reader, "V."

ST. LouIS, Mo.
DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: I have taken you so long now,
I do not think I could get along without you. Papa
gave you to me for Christmas when I was a wee girl,
and now I am fourteen, and wherever we go I have my
ST. NICHOLAS. Just before we left the ef Norfolk Navy-yard
two years ago I wrote you a letter, and when papa came
out here as Lighthouse Inspector, my ST. NICHOLAS
was forwarded to me and my letter was in it, and papa
and mama were so surprised, for they did not know I
had written. We expect to be out here one year more.
I spend my vacations on the "Lily "-the lighthouse-
tender. Did you know that all but two or three of the
tenders are called after the different flowers ? The
"Lily" goes from Cairo, Ill., to St. Paul, Minn., and
from St. Louis to Kansas City, and St. Louis to La
Salle, Ill., so we go over about eighteen hundred miles
of river, including the Mississippi, Missouri, and Illinois
rivers. We see some very queer people and funny
places. I am at boarding-school from September until
June. We still have our parrot and canary I wrote
about two years ago, and now a mocking-bird. We
start for St. Paul the day after to-morrow, and it will
take us just about a month or a little over to make the
trip, as we always have to move, paint, and repair the
lights or beacons. Does it not seem ridiculous that a
lighthouse should be nothing but a pole stuck in the
ground and made firm with three sticks or braces, and
a pair of steps to reach a small shelf that holds the lan-
tern, which is lighted each night by the keeper? The
keepers get from eight to fifteen dollars per month;
some of the keepers are intelligent men, while others are
very ignorant; but they are all glad to get the money for
keeping the lights.
Your devoted reader, N. V. W.

DEAR ST. NICHOLAS: This is the second time I write
to you, to say how much I like your journal, it is so full
of pretty stories and pictures. I like the story of "Two
Girls and a Boy" more than I can say. I like also to
read the letters of your little subscribers, they are so well
written. Indeed, I have no book or "review" so interest-
ing and amusing as yours.
Each time I receive ST. NICHOLAS, it is in the middle
of my English lesson; so I can't open it just at that
moment; but I cannot express my joy when sometimes
my mistress permits me to open it as a reward; so pleased
I am when I have this permission. Good-by, dear ST.
NICHOLAS. Your little subscriber,


WORD-SQUARE. I. Yodel. 2. Opera. 3. Depot. 4. Erode.
5. Latex.
TRIPLE ACROSTIC. First row, starts; middle row, dative; last
row, meddle. Cross-words: I. Stadium. 2. Treacle. 3. Abutted.
4. Repined. 5. Trivial. 6. Steeple.
ANAGRAM. Thomas Babington Macaulay.
ZIGZAG. "Sageof Monticello." Cross-words: I. Sole. 2. rAid.
3. saGo. 4. mazE. 5. plOd. 6. aFar. 7. Maul. 8. bOnd. 9. faNg.
to. griT. ii. brIg. 12. aCts. 13. Even. 14. eLse. 15. baLk.
16. polO.
3. Laden. 4. Radical. 5. Decay. 6. Nay. 7. L. II. I. G. 2. Mew.
3. Minor. 4. General. 5. Worry. 6. Ray. 7. L. III. a. Salad.
2. Anise. 3. Limit. 4. Aside. 5. Deter. IV. x. T. 2. Net.
3. Negus. 4. Tegular. 5. Tulip. 6. Sap. 7. R. V. I. T. 2. Orb.
3. Odium. 4. Trivial. 5. Build. 6. Mad. 7. L.

CUBE. From I to 2, declare; I to 3, deposit; 2 to 4, exalted;
3 to 4, thyroid; 5 to 6, scooper; 5 to 7, spangle; 6 to 8, regress;
7 to 8, emblems; i to 5, dais; 2 to 6, Emir; 4 to 8, dubs; 3 to 7,
NUMERICAL ENIGMA. "Justice is often pale and melancholy;
but Gratitude, her daughter, is constantly in the flow of spirits and
the bloom of loveliness."
Pi. Dear autumn days, so calm, so sweet,
Like a bright, welcome memory you seem;
So full of tremulous and hazy light,
So soft, so radiant, so like a dream.
DOUBLE ACROSTIC. Primals, Jupiter: finals, Neptune. Cross-
words: i. Jacobin. 2. Unaware. 3. Parsnip. 4. Implant. 5. Ta-
bleau. 6. Erasion. 7. Restore.
RHOMBOIDS. I. i. Opera. 2. Award. 3. Endor. 4. Total.
5. Repay. II. I. Meter. 2. David. 3. Redan. 4. Renew.,
5. Sewer. Two first words, operameter.

To OUR PUZZLERS: Answers, to be acknowledged in the magazine, must be received not later than the i5th 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 SEPTEMBER NUMBER were received, before September x5th, from Paul Reese-Maude
E. Palmer--" Xelis "- G. B. Dyer- Grace V. Morris- Mama, Katie, and Jamie Josephine Sherwood -Jo and I Uncle M ung--
Adele, Jack, and George A.- A. W. A., S. W. A., W. W. A., and A. P. C. A.-" December and May "-" Wareham "- No Name,
ANSWERS TO PUZZLES IN THE SEPTEMBER NUMBER were received, before September i5th, from "Hieroglyphics," ir-"Bald
Head," Rosalie Bloomingdale, t Matilda W. Bailey, --" Berkshire," 2 -M. and L., 2-Elaine S., i- Marion and Carrie C., -
"The McG.'s," i-- Helen A. Ely, 3 -Adele Wohnlich, i -Edith Totten, I -Jamsie A. M. and Mama, 4 -Arthur B. Cook, i -Gertrude
Kerr, Sadie R. S., 3 -" Chestnut," 5-Evelyn de Zouche, 2 L. H. K., --Clara W., x -May Martin, Louise and Helen
Freeman, I Charlie D. Harmon, I -Marion Alice Perkins, 4-" Crew of the Sunshine," I Coody and Katharine Van Coughnet, i -
Mama and Harry, 5 E. M. G., ro- Evelyn de Zouche, i -" Bubbles," 4- Nellie Archer, 4- Willie H., Effie K. Talboys, 7-
"V.," 2-N. J. Borden, 3-Melville Hunnewell, 3-Nellie L. Howes, 8-Ida C. Thallon, i--M. Elizabeth Breed, I-A. C.
H., -" Clifford St. Girls," to- Blanche and Fred, az -Miriam Bingay, Chester B. Sumner, 9-" Maro," 3 -Laura M. Zinser, 4-
L. Hutton and V. Beede, ao-Jessie Chapman, 8-Charlotte C. Moses, Il-Julia Johnson, i-Dora F. Hereford, 7 -"Highmount
Girls," 7- Ethel Wright, -Agnes C. Leaycraft, 2-Ella B. Lyon, 2-" May and '79," 7- H. H. and L. 0., 5-" Infantry," x -
"We Girls," 8- Mama and Lillhe, 2 Rachel Greene, I.

ishly. 2. A large bird. 3. To turn aside. 4. Concise.
My primals name one of the Fates, and my finals, the 5. To be admitted to.
wife of Orpheus. III. CENTRAL SQUARE: I. A valley or low place.
CROSS-WORDS (of equal length): I. Unrestrained. 2. Something that Otway says was made "to temper
2. Farewell. 3. To provide food. 4. A masculine man." 3. To modify in any way for the better. 4. A
name. 5. Finished. 6. A famous mountain. 7. A spear carried by horsemen. 5. A finisher.
masculine name. 8. To allay. "cLIO." IV. LOWER LEFT-HAND SQUARE: I. Speed. 2. One
of the Mohammedan nobility of Afghanistan and Scinde.
CONNECTED SQUARES. 3. A smoker's delight. 4. To annoy. 5. Deviated from
the true course.
..... V. LOWER RIGHT-HAND SQUARE: I. An animal
allied to the civet. 2. Benefit. 3. Satisfied. 4. A con-
tinued attempt to gain possession. 5. Prior in years.
F. S. F.
...... ZIGZAG.
ALL of the words described contain the same num-
ber of letters. When these are rightly guessed and
placed one below another, in the order here given, the
zigzag, beginning at the upper left-hand letter, will spell
four words.
CROSS-WORDS: I. Hydromel. 2. Predilection. 3. A
small, flat-bottomed rowboat. 4. To fix firmly. 5. Cir-
.. culates rapidly. 6. The culmination. 7. To course with
hounds. 8. A prismatic play of colors. 9. To leave
undone. o1. To proceed without hindrance or opposi-
tion. II. The one and the other. 12. An Arabian
military commander. 13. A cooper's tool. 14. An
island. 15. To satisfy the appetite. 16. An air sung
I. UPPER LEFT-HAND SQUARE: I. A junto. 2. A by a single voice. 17. A deep trench around the ram-
large South American serpent. 3. Makes a round hole part of a castle. 18. One united to another by treaty.
through. 4. A catkin. 5. Remains. 19. A stroke with a whip. o. B. G.



DIVIDE this picture in four parts so that each part will
contain three magazines and will be identical in shape
and size. You must not draw through any of the maga-
zines. If you solve the puzzle correctly you will have
four pieces of paper of the same shape and size, and each
piece will have on it three magazines in perfect condition.
It is possible to solve the puzzle in two ways.
To show the solution, make a tracing of the picture
on thin paper. This can be cut, and the four pieces in-
closed with answers to other puzzles.

I. I. To imprint. 2. A number. 3. Tapestry. 4. In-
tended. 5. Nuisances.
II. I. MUSICAL instruments. 2. To reverence. 3. A
bird. 4. Conceited fellows. 5. Meaning.
"WEE 3."
ALL of the words described contain the same number
of letters. When rightly guessed, and placed one below
another in the order here given, the initial letters will
spell the name of a famous man who was born on Christ-
mas Day, two hundred and fifty years ago.
CROSS-WORDS: I. A man noted for his wisdom. 2. To
incite to action. 3. To wander without restraint or direc-
tion. 4. A celebrated Greek epic poem. 5. A number.
6. A projecting or sharp corner. 7. To do away with.
8. A man of coarse nature and manners. 9. Pertaining
to the back. o1. A bird remarkable for its strength,

size, and graceful flight. II. To diminish by constant
loss. 12. A small drum used as an accompaniment to a
fife. 13. One of several species of European thrushes.
14. One of a race that has no fixed location. M. o. G.


indite. 3. A goddess. 4. A fruit of certain trees. 5. In
2. An adversary. '3. To whistle. 4. To instigate. 5. In
2. A metal vessel. 3. A feminine name. 4. A short sleep.
5. In shovel.
2. To plan. 3. The nether world. 4. A wooden pin.
5. In shovel. A. P. C. A.



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