Thec BdlIJu, L~br.ry
NEAL, THE MILLER
A SON OF LIBERTY
AUTHOR OF TOrY TYLER," THE BOYS' REVOLT," "JENNY WREN'S
BOARDING-HOUSE," "JERRY'S FAMILY," ETC.
ESTES AND LAURIAT
By ESTES AND LAURIAT
All rights reserved
Tyfografbhy and Printing by
C. H. Simonds & Co.
Electrotyping by Geo. C. Scott & Sons
Boston, U. S. A.
I. THE PROJECT. II
II. THE ESCAPE 26
III. IN BOSTON 39
IV. ON THE PASCATAQUA 52
V. STEPHEN KIDDER .. 67
VI. SEWATIS 80
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.
------- 4 -
AT WILLIAM COTTON'S STORE Frozntispiece
"START AT ONCE" 15
WALTER'S MOTHER BIDS HIM GOOD-BYE 21
HAINES ARGUING WITH WALTER .. 23
" THE HORSE WAS RIDERLESS .. 30
"IT WAS RATHER DEEPER THAN A SCRATCH" 33
"I WILL GLADLY WORK THE OARS" .. 41
PAUL REVERE RECEIVES NAL 43
JIM ALBERT 50
" HE APPLIED SUCH RESTORATIVES AS WERE AT HAND". 55
BUILDING THE FOUNDATION ... 61
"I FIX HIM 65
"CARRYING THE PARCHMENTS ON A SWORD" 70
SEWATIS AND JIMt ALBERT 75
"SPRINGING UP IN ALARM, HF SEIZED A MUSKET" 82
" T-HE FIRST BUSHEL OF CORN" 88
NEAL, THE MILLER.
A SON OF LIBERTY.
" FEAR you are undertaking too much, Neal. When
a fellow lacks two years of his majority-"
"You forget that I have been my own master more
than a year. Father gave me my time before he died,
and that in the presence of Governor Wentworth him-
"Why before him rather than 'Squire White ?"
"I don't know. My good friend Andrew McCleary
attended to the business for me, and to-day I may make
contracts as legally as two years hence."
Even with that advantage I do not see how it will be
possible for you to build a grist-mill; or, if you should
succeed in getting so far with the project, how you can
procure the machinery. It is such an undertaking as
Andrew McCleary himself would not venture."
"Yet he has promised me every assistance in his
NEAL, THE A ILLER.
And how much may that be? He has no friends at
court who can-"
Neither does he wish for one there, Stephen Kidder.
He is a man who has the welfare of the colonists too
much at heart to seek for friends near the throne."
It is there he will need them if he hopes to benefit
Perhaps not. The time is coming when it behooves
each of us to observe well the law regarding our arms."
"You mean the statute which declares that 'every
male from sixteen to .sixty must have ready for use one
musket and bayonet, a knapsack, cartridge-box, one pound
of powder, twenty bullets and twelve flints ?'"
"There is none other that I know of."
Then I shall not be a law-breaker, for I am provided
in due form. But what has that to do with your mill?
I think you will find it difficult to buy the stamped paper
necessary for the lawful making of your contracts unless
you dispose of your outfit for war or hunting, which is
the best to be found in Portsmouth."
"That I shall never do, even if I fail in getting the
mill. Do you know, Stephen, that I was admitted to the
ranks of the Sons of Liberty last night ?"
The honours are being heaped high on the head of
the would-be miller of the Pascataqua," Kidder replied,
with a laugh. Do you expect the Sons of Liberty will
do away with the necessity for stamped paper? "
Who shall say ? Much can-"
Walter Neal did not conclude the sentence, for at that
instant two men passed, and a signal, so slight as not to
be observed by his companion, was given by one of the
new-comers, causing the young man to hasten away without
so much as a word in explanation of his sudden departure,
while Stephen Kidder stood gazing after him in blank
The two friends whose conversation was so suddenly
interrupted were natives of the town of Portsmouth, in
the Province of New Hampshire; and, had either had
occasion to set down the date of this accidental meeting,
it would have been written, October 26th, 1765.
As has been suggested, Walter Neal's ambition was to
erect a grist-mill a certain distance up the Pascataqua
River, where was great need of one, since land in that
portion of the province was being rapidly settled; and,
although without capital, he believed it might be possible
for him to accomplish his desires.
He was favourably known to the merchants of Ports-
mouth, and thanks to the efforts of his friend, Andrew
McCleary,-ten years his senior,-several tradesmen had
intimated that perhaps they might advance sufficient
money to start the enterprise in a limited way.
Neal had inherited a small amount of property from his
father; but, like many of the farmers in the New World,
he was sadly hampered by the lack of ready money. Dur-
ing several weeks prior to this accidental meeting with
Stephen Kidder, he had been forced to temporarily
abandon his scheming in regard to the mill, that he
might try to raise sufficient money with which to pay
NEAL, THE MILLER.
the annual tax, already more than burdensome, upon his
As Neal hastened after the two men who had given
him the signal to follow them, the most engrossing
thought in his mind was as to how the amount of four
pounds and seven shillings in cash could be raised without
a sacrifice of the cattle from the home farm.
Ephraim Foulsham had partially agreed to advance the
sum if he could be secured by a chattel-mortgage, and
when Neal overtook those in advance he was speculating
upon the possibility of getting the amount that day, lest
execution should be issued against him.
That which he heard, however, speedily drove all
thoughts of a personal nature from his mind.
Master McCleary would be pleased to see you, and
quickly," one of the men said, in a low tone, when the
three were where there was no other to overhear the
Is it important I should go at once? "
"Yes; unless you would break the oath you took last
Neal waited to ask no more questions. Ten minutes
later he was at Samuel Leavitt's store, where he knew
McCleary would be found at this time of the day.
Before Neal could speak, his friend walked quickly out
of the building toward the shore of the harbour, giving the
would-be mill-owner an expressive look, which plainly told
that he was to follow.
Not until McCleary was at a point where no one could
approach him without being seen did he halt, and then
Neal was by his side.
"A messenger must be sent to Boston at once," the
elder man said, in a low tone. "It is not generally known
that you have been admitted to our association, therefore
you are the one to go."
"When shall I start ?"
"At once; there is no time to be lost. Will you ride
my horse? "
My own will serve me better; suspicions might be
aroused if I should be seen on yours."
"Very true; I had not thought of that. You are to
make all speed, and go direct to Master Revere's. Say to
him that George Messerve, who has been appointed dis-
tributor of the tax stamps for New Hampshire, will arrive
in Boston shortly, if, indeed, he is not already there.
Tell Master Revere that the feeling in our section grows
stronger against this last imposition every day, until there
is danger lest the excesses which marked the 26th of
August in Boston may be repeated here. He will under-
stand what it is we want him to do."
"Shall I have time-"
You will not have time for delay. Start at once, and
as you perform this mission, so will you be benefiting
yourself in the project of the mill."
It does not require I should know that in order to be
faithful to the trust imposed upon me. I was about to
ask if I should have time to attend to raising the amount
of my taxes, for I have twice been warned they are due."
NEAL, THE MILLER.
"I will see to it that you do not suffer by the delay.
Go at once, and let nothing detain you; we expect the
message will be delivered early to-morrow morning."
Neal's home lay two miles west of Portsmouth, and
without waiting to attend to the business for which he had
visited the town, he hastened toward it at a rapid pace.
His mind was easy in regard to the payment of the taxes,
for McCleary would keep every promise made, and when
he returned it should be possible to make the necessary
arrangements with Ephraim Foulsham within twenty-four
When he arrived in view of the log-house which his
father had built twenty years previous, Walter understood
that something out of the ordinary course of events had
happened. The doors of the barn were open, and his
mother stood in front of the building, as if in deepest
distress. A portion of the rail-fence which enclosed the
buildings was torn down, and the cart that had been left
by the side of the road was no longer to be seen.
"You could not borrow the money?" his mother said,
interrogatively, while he was yet some distance away.
"I haven't had an opportunity to see Master Foul-
sham. What has happened ?"
"The worst, my son, that could befall us at this time.
The officers have attached the cattle and the horse. Even
if you can borrow money, the costs of the action will eat
up all we had to live on this coming winter."
"The horse gone!" Walter exclaimed, as if in bewil-
We could better spare him just now than the cattle,
because of the work yet to be done."
Neal was not at that moment thinking of the farm
duties, nor yet of the mill, which was more distant in the
future than before, but only of the fact that it was
necessary he should be in Boston on the following
Hurriedly he explained to his mother why it was he
must leave home, and added in conclusion,-
"Master McCleary has promised that I shall not suffer
because of the delay in paying the tax, and I am certain
he will keep faith with me."
"And do you intend to leave home now?"
"I must; there are those who depend upon me, and
they shall not be disappointed."
I am afraid, Walter, you are pursuing the wrong
course. It is best that wiser and older heads than yours
should be concerned in the struggle which must come, if
the people resist this new tax."
Father would have done as I am doing; and, since I
am to fill his place, it is fit I should do what I can."
"But how will you reach Boston without a horse or
Walter hesitated. By returning to Portsmouth he could
get the animal which McCleary had proposed he should
ride, and yet to do so would delay him greatly, in addition
to the possibility of arousing suspicion against his friend.
By leaving the main road six miles farther on, and
striking across a tract of wooded country, the distance
AEAL, THE MILLLER.
could be reduced materially; but even then there would
remain at least fifty miles to be traversed.
"I can walk to Salem," he said, at length; "and there,
William Cotton will provide me with a horse."
"It is a desperate journey, and dangerous, if some should
learn why you had undertaken it. I-"
You would not bid me stay, mother, but rather
urge me forward. I have no time to lose."
"You will at least wait until I can put up some food."
'"Yes; it will be necessary to eat, I suppose. Bread
and cheese will be enough, and even that must be got
Mrs. Neal made no attempt to dissuade her son from
his purpose. That which he had said concerning his
father had been sufficient to silence her on the score of
danger; and, when the small store of provisions were
wrapped in a stout piece of cloth and placed in the pocket
of his coat, she kissed him, but did not dare trust her
voice to speak.
With a stout hickory stick as a walking-cane, Walter
set out, and there was sufficient in his mind to provide
ample food for thought during the first two hours of the
journey. He was not at all certain that, now that the
cost of making an attachment of his property was to be
added to the amount of his tax, Ephraim Foulsham would
be willing to advance the money; and, even if the sum
could be raised in such a manner, it was so much increased
that he could not hope to see the wished-for mill under
course of erection until another season at the earliest.
At the end of the second hour he had accomplished at
least nine miles of the distance, and could well afford to
indulge in a brief halt while partaking of his food.
"Nine miles from home means eleven from Ports-
mouth," he said aloud, as if the sound of his own voice
gave him encouragement. "By this path Salem cannot
be more than twenty-four miles
away, and I must make it. i
five hours in order to reach .. I
Boston by sunrise. It '
can be done if I do not .
allow myself too much '
time in which to rest
my legs, andI-"
He ceased speaking
very suddenly, for at
that instant, as if they I i a
had descended from the
clouds, two horsemen
stood before him.
path had deadened the
sound of the animals'
approach as they came
up from the rear.
Walter recognized both the new-comers. The foremost
was Samuel Haines, a man who had made an unsuccessful
attempt to get the appointment to distribute stamped
paper in New Hampshire, and the other James Albert,
NEAL, THE MILLER.
a half-breed Indian, who was well known in Portsmouth
as a quarrelsome fellow, ready to take part in any busi-
ness, however disreputable, so long as he was provided
with an ample supply of rum.
Walter nodded familiarly to Haines, but paid no atten-
tion to the Indian.
Wait a moment, Master Neal," the former said,
gravely, as Walter attempted to pass him. "Where are
you going that you cannot stop for a short converse ?"
On business which admits of no delay."
"Do you expect to walk from here to Boston before
Who said I was going to Boston ?"
Perhaps I guessed as much."
"Then kindly guess that I can't wait here simply for
the pleasure of talking with Master Haines."
I shan't try to do that, my rebellious friend. When
Jim gets ready-"
Walter half turned to see what part the Indian was to
play in this interview, and as he did so the fellow's arms
were around him, pinioning his own to his side.
"What is the meaning of this ?" he cried, angrily, as he
tried in vain to release himself.
"It means, Master Neal, that I wish to see the message
you carry," and Haines, dismounting, hastily searched the
"You have found yourself mistaken as sadly as when
you believed the king would give you the dirty work of
selling stamped paper," Walter said, with a laugh, noting
the look of disappointment on Haines's face when he
failed to find any document.
"You have been intrusted to deliver the message by
word of mouth, and it will serve my purpose as well if I
prevent you from calling on that seditious Revere. Here,
Jim, tie him to a tree with this," and Haines drew from
his saddle-bags a piece of stout rope.
It was in vain Walter struggled; taken at a disadvantage
as he had been, he was powerless, and in a few moments
was bound securely to a tree, while his captors threw
themselves on the ground in front of him, as if to make
a long stay.
If you repeat what you were told to say to Revere, I
will see to it that you are made more comfortable," Haines
said, after a long pause.
"And what then ?"
We shall make certain you don't return to Portsmouth
for two or three days, that is all."
"If I have a message to deliver, I will keep it to
myself, instead of intrusting it to you," Walter said,
grimly; but his mind was sorely troubled, for he realized
that if he should be delayed here no more than four
hours the information he was to give might arrive too
D URING the hour which followed Walter's capture
the two men remained close at hand, while their
horses were allowed to stroll along the path, eating grass,
and at the expiration of that time the animals could no
longer either be seen or heard.
"Go and bring them back, Jim!" Haines said, in a
peremptory tone. "It would be a hard job for us if
they should stray too far."
The half-breed hesitated an instant, as if undecided
whether to obey this command, and then, rising slowly
to his feet, he slouched down the path lazily.
After the brief conversation which had followed the
capture of Walter, neither of the men had spoken until
this moment; but as soon as his comrade disappeared
among the bushes, Haines said, in what he intended
should sound like a friendly tone,
I am sorry to see a promising young man like you,
Neal, led astray by these fanatics, who dream of opposing
his majesty's just and wise laws. You have too much
solid sense to train in any such company."
"You seem to have a remarkably good opinion of me,"
Walter said, grimly.
So I have, lad, so I have. I know you have been
hoping to build a mill of your own on the Pascataqua,
and am interested in the project, for it is a sensible one:
there is plenty of money to be made in that section."
According to appearances now I shan't reap any very
large harvest this year."
It depends upon yourself. If you had kept proper
company there would have been no attachment made
"How did you know anything about that?" Walter
"I heard the matter discussed, and feel certain you
would have been given more time but for your own very
unwise move last night."
"Then you know-"
Walter stopped suddenly on realizing that he was about
to betray a secret, but Haines finished the remark.
"That you enrolled yourself among that rabble who
call themselves the Sons of Liberty? Yes; I know it,
and so do others."
"It seems I am of more importance than I fancied. I
never supposed anything I did could make any difference
to the good people of Portsmouth; but I was mistaken."
It concerns right-minded people anywhere when a boy
who stands on the threshold of manhood makes a grievous
"That remains to be proven."
"And it will be speedily, as you must learn to your
cost. If you really want a mill on the Pascataqua, I will
show you how it can be built at once."
NEAL, THE MILLER.
"I should like to learn the secret."
"Abandon the evil companions you have chosen, reveal
such of their plots against his majesty's officers as you are
acquainted with, and I guarantee that a sufficient sum of
money to put up the buildings and purchase the ma-
chinery shall be loaned you within twenty-four hours."
I am a fool not to have understood the drift of your
conversation before it reached this point," Walter said,
hotly. I had rather never own a mill than get it as you
propose; and as for evil companions,' I am proud to have
been allowed to join them."
"You will soon regret it."
"So you have said before; but since I have little faith
in such predictions, suppose you change the subject by
explaining why you hold me prisoner, and how long I am to
be kept in this uncomfortable position ? "
"There is no reason why both questions should not be
answered. You are to remain in my custody till George
Messerve arrives in Portsmouth, in order that your friends
may not intimidate him, and it will be necessary to stay
exactly as you are several hours longer."
Walter asked no more questions. He understood it
was the purpose of his captors to keep him out of sight,
that McCleary might believe his messenger had gotten
through to Boston in safety; and, in the meanwhile, some
one else would be sent to warn the newly-appointed dis-
tributer of stamped paper of something- Walter could
not divine what which might be attempted against him.
Ten minutes passed in silence, and then the voice of
the half-breed could be heard far away in the distance,
calling to his comrade.
With an exclamation of impatience, Haines rose to his
feet, gave a careless glance at the rope which bound
Walter, and then replied to the Indian as he went quickly
in the direction from which the hail had come.
Left alone, Walter looked around, as if expecting to see
some one who might aid him, and then tugged and strained
at his bonds, trying to wrench free either hand or foot.
The rope had been tied too securely to admit of his
slipping a knot, but it was nearly new, and the prisoner's
heart beat fast as he realized that by exerting all his
strength it would be possible to stretch it a trifle.
If he could succeed in making his escape immediately,
all might yet be well; but if he was forced to remain there
until his captors returned, there was little chance he
would have another opportunity.
Regardless of the pain, he writhed and twisted until
bead-like drops of perspiration stood out on his forehead,
and at the instant when he was convinced all efforts were
useless, that portion of the rope which confined his wrists
suddenly loosened sufficiently to enable him to withdraw
one hand at the expense of no slight amount of skin from
Once he was thus far on the road to escape, the re-
mainder was comparatively simple.
With the hand which was free he untied the knots, and
in less than five minutes from the time Haines dis-
appeared among the foliage, he was at liberty.
NEAL, THE MILLER.
The only thought in his mind now was to take such a
course as would best enable him to elude his pursuers,
and he knew full well that the half-breed could track him
where the white man would be wholly at a loss to find a
trace of his movements.
"Its hard to turn back, but it must be done," he said,
half to himself, as he hesitated the merest fraction of time,
'," -" r2 .I
-i 4. # 'I .."'
and then ran down the path in the same direction from
which he had come.
He had hardly started when the sound of horse's hoof-
beats caused his cheek to grow pale. He had regained
his liberty only to lose it !
Involuntarily he glanced backward, and then a low cry
of satisfaction burst from his lips.
The horse coming down the path was riderless. It was
the animal Haines had ridden, and apparently much the
better steed of the two.
Turning quickly, Walter ran toward the horse, seized
him by the bridle before he had time to wheel around, and
in another second was in the saddle.
SA short riding-whip hung from the pommel, and with this
the fugitive struck the animal sharply as he forced him
directly into the underbrush toward the south.
Fortunately, Walter was well acquainted with this sec-
tion of the country, having been over it many times with
his father, and knew exactly which direction to take in
order to gain that portion of the forest where it would be
possible to ride at a reasonably rapid gait before venturing
on the path again.
His escape, however, was not to be as simple as at first
seemed. Before he was twenty yards from the starting-
point a loud cry in the rear told that his departure had
been discovered, and this was followed almost immediately
by the report of a pistol.
If you don't do anything worse than shoot, I shan't
come to much grief," he said, with a laugh. Master
Haines is not as wise a man as I have supposed him to be
if he thinks it is possible to bring his game down by firing
at random, for he surely can't see me."
Walter failed to realize that his movements could be
plainly heard, even though he was hidden from view by
NEAL, THE MILLER.
the foliage, and soon the sounds of pursuit reached
"There is no need of the Indian while my horse is
floundering among the bushes," he muttered to himself.
" Haines has mounted the other animal, -was probably
on his back before I started, and counts on riding me
down. He can do it, too Walter exclaimed, in a louder
tone. "Once he is where I can serve as a target, the
chase will be brought to a speedy end."
Now he understood that if he hoped to escape he must
return to the path, where. the horse would have an oppor-
tunity to show his speed, and he wheeled him suddenly
around, regardless of the risk of coming directly upon
Fortunately his pursuer was not as near as he had fan-
cied, and soon he was riding at the best possible pace over
the narrow path. He had emerged beyond the spot where
the half-breed was stationed, and before him was nothing
to jeopardize safety; it only remained to distance the
Two miles were traversed in a remarkably short space
of time, and then he was on that portion of the road which
ran in a straight line through a sort of clearing.
That it was possible for his pursuer to see him during a
certain time was shown, as a bullet whistled within an
inch of the fugitive's head.
"That makes two shots, my friend," he said, as if to
keep up his courage. Unless I am mistaken, you had
only a couple of pistols, and by the time they are reloaded
I shall be screened by the bushes again."
That his calculations were not correct was shown as a
second ball passed uncomfortably close, and a third tore
through his coat-sleeve, causing the warm blood to gush
down over his hand.
"Only a scratch, nothing more !" he shouted, and then
he was among the friendly shelter of the trees again.
The horse upon which Haines rode could not hold the
pace, and when half an hour had elapsed no sound of
pursuit was heard.
It was time Walter gave the captured animal a breath-
ing spell, if he hoped to reach Salem as he had calculated,
and he brought him to a standstill while he pulled off his
coat to examine the wound on his arm.
It was rather deeper than a scratch, but yet nothing
more serious than to cause a goodly show of blood, and
Walter put on his coat again without a thought that any
bandaging might be necessary.
This done, he rode on at a more leisurely pace, but
listening intently for any sound betokening the approach
of his enemy.
Nothing occurred to cause him alarm, and it was not
yet sunset when he drew rein in front of William Cotton's
That gentleman was in and disengaged, as was seen
when he came to the door for a view of the new arrival.
What! Is it you, Walter Neal ?"
There is no doubt about it in my mind, although my
joints are so stiff from long riding that if I was less
acquainted with myself I might believe I was only a por-
NEAL, THE MILLER.
tion of the saddle," Walter said, laughingly, as he dis-
mounted, and added, in a graver tone, I must speak with
you alone, Friend Cotton."
I am alone now. Take your horse to the stable, and
come back at once."
I will leave him where he is; perhaps it will not be
well for you to know anything about him." And then hur-
riedly entering the store, Walter explained why he must
reach Boston without delay, after which he gave a brief
account of his misadventures.
William Cotton, although a sympathizer with those who
were about to offer resistance to the commands of his
most gracious majesty, was a prudent man, and feared to
be known as a disloyal citizen.
The fact that Samuel Haines would probably soon
arrive in search of his horse caused Master Cotton no
little disquietude of mind, and he said, reprovingly,-
It is well to be zealous in a good cause, Walter; but
it is wrong to commit a crime in order to compass your
"What crime have I committed? "
"The theft of the horse will be charged against you,
and those who are intrusted with the execution of the
law do not favour such an association as that in which you
"My getting possession of him was the fortune of war,
not a theft. I was a prisoner, made so unlawfully, and
had the right to escape as best I could."
That argument is good here; but will be of little avail
to those who look upon you as a disloyal youth, who
should be deprived of his liberty."
If I am to be charged with horse-stealing because of
what has been done, it cannot be avoided now. Before I
am arrested I must carry the message with which I have
been entrusted, and to do so I need another horse. I had
believed I could get one from you without difficulty."
So you can, lad; but at the same time you must not
think hardly of me if I use proper precaution to save my-
self from being caught in the meshes of the law. You
know where my stable is; take an animal from there
without my permission, and I cannot prevent it."
"I am to steal another horse in order that you may not
get into trouble ?"
"It can make but little difference to you, so long as you
see Master Revere by daylight, and I must not neglect
my own interests. No one has seen you, and you may be
able to get out of town secretly."
Walter could not afford to waste any more time in what
seemed very like quibbling, and without further parley he
turned to act upon his friend's suggestion.
"It is not well that you remain in Boston any longer
than may be absolutely necessary for your business," the
worthy Master Cotton called after him, warningly.
''There is that being done which you need not be identi-
Walter made no reply; but when he was out of the
building on his way to the stable, he muttered to him-
38 NEAL, THE MILLER.
"If I was as timorous as you, Master Cotton, I should
now be in the company of Sam Haines, with a rope tied
tightly about me."
Five minutes later he was riding out of Salem at full
speed on the fleetest horse to be found in the stable, and
there was every reason for him to believe that he would,
in due season, deliver the message with which he had
THE light of the coming day had not yet appeared in
the eastern sky when the young messenger drew
rein at the edge of Charlestown harbour, and sat in the
saddle, gazing curiously around, as he speculated upon the
chances of being ferried across to Boston.
It was well the journey was ended, for the heaving
flanks of Master Cotton's horse told that he had been
ridden so long at full speed as to be well-nigh exhausted.
Immediately on leaving Salem, Walter had debated in
his mind as to the choice of roads. By making a long
detozur he could ride directly into the city of his desti-
nation; but it would be at the expense of considerable
time, which he believed to be precious.
On the other hand, by traversing the shortest road he
would, as he now did, find himself penniless, with a broad
stretch of water to be crossed before the message could
"I shall get over in some way," he had said, as he
arrived at a decision, and now was come the time when
that some way" must be found.
It is certain I shan't be able to take the horse with
me," he said, after a brief time of silence, "and I must
look around for a place in which he can be hidden."
NAEAL, THE MILLER.
By riding slowly along the shore-line, he soon found a
spot where the grass was luxuriant, which was hidden
from view of those on the road by a heavy growth of
trees, and here he resolved Master Cotton's horse should
be left to take care of itself. It was not probable the
tired animal would stray very far from where food could
be had in such abundance, and Walter made no other
preparation for the halt than to secrete the saddle and
bridle in the thicket.
Returning to the landing-stage of the ferry-boat, he
waited impatiently for some signs of life on the water-front.
During fully half an hour he was forced to remain in
idleness, while he mentally reproached himself for not
having taken the longest road, and thereby arrived in
Boston without being forced to depend upon a boat to
conclude the journey.
More than once was he tempted to take possession of
one of the small craft hauled up on the shore without
the formality of asking the owner's permission, but the
thought that he had already put himself in a position to
be charged with theft deterred him from such a lawless
Then, just as the day was beginning to break, a boat
filled with sailors rowed up to the landing. All the occu-
pants save one disembarked without paying any attention
to the idle boy who was watching them intently, and the
little craft was being pushed off, when Walter cried,-
If you are going back to Boston I will gladly work
the oars to pay for my passage."
IN BOSTON. 41
"Can you row?"
"As well as you."
Then come aboard, and let me see how quickly you
can pull to the other shore."
i i t e i i I r I
1ei .0) _p o-' i
he clambered over the bow, and the man in charge had no
reason to complain of his skill at the oars.
The young messenger did not require a second invita-
tion. He gave the boat a vigorous push with his foot as
he clambered over the bow, and the man in charge had no
reason to complain of his skill at the oars.
NEAL, THE MILLER.
"If you want work, you should buy a boat and ply
your trade as a waterman," the sailor said, when the short
voyage had come to an end, and Walter leaped ashore,
impatient to conclude the mission with which he had been
"I want work that will pay," he said, halting for an
instant; "but I don't intend to find it as a boatman.
Can you tell me where Master Paul Revere lives? "
"Do you mean the lieutenant,-him as has set up for a
"The very one."
"And you count on goin' into a shop, instead of pullin'
boats, eh ? I '11 wager you're a sailor who has given his
captain the slip."
"I have never been beyond the sight of land, neither do
I care to work in a shop; but I have business which
admits of no delay, and if you will give me the informa-
tion I shall be very grateful."
"Do you know where North Square is ? "
"I have never been in Boston before."
"Then inquire of the first one you see. It is not far."
Walter waited to hear no more, but ran swiftly on in
the direction he supposed North Square might lay, and a
kindly fortune guided his footsteps, for when he had an
opportunity to ask the desired question, he was within a
few paces of his destination.
Master Revere's shop was not yet opened, but the
young messenger had little difficulty in arousing the
household, and a few moments later he was standing in a
room which, although not furnished with any pretension
to elegance, was more rich in ornamentation than Walter
had ever fancied could be found.
Master Revere did not keep him waiting very long; he
had received too many visitors at unseemly hours to
make any delay, and the sun had but just risen when
Walter's mission was accomplished.
"You have come in good time, young sir," Master
Revere said, when the boy had repeated the message.
"The ship on which the stamp distributer for the Prov-
ince of New Hampshire sailed from London arrived last
evening. I will see him at once, and before noon you
shall take to your friends such information as I have to
give. In the meanwhile you will eat breakfast, and
then my eldest son shall act as host, unless you prefer to
sleep, for you have been travelling all night."
I can sleep later, sir; but now that I am in Boston I
would like to see the city."
So you shall. You will find much that is fair and
comely to look upon; but beneath all the air of bravery is
the disquietude of oppression, and the sense of wrongs
yet to be wiped out."
In the province from which I have come we believe
the remedy for oppression to be among ourselves, sir,"
Walter replied, modestly.
So it is, lad; and may you be one not lacking in
wholesome love for your country when the time for action
I fear a boy like me will be of but little service."
,NEAL, THE MILLER.
The boys may be men before the time for stirring
deeds shall come," Master Revere said, much as if speak-
ing to himself; and then he added, quickly, You will
break your fast with me."
Walter was not accustomed to such a meal as was
speedily placed before him ; but the novelty of his sur-
roundings did not prevent him from doing full justice to
When the master of the house set out to perform the
duty expected of him by his friends in Portsmouth, young
John took charge of the guest, and from that time until
nearly noon Walter feasted his eyes upon such wonders
as he had never even dreamed about.
His first visit was to the magnificent building presented
to the city by Peter Faneuil, and then to that elm at the
head of Essex Street beneath the branches of which the
association known as the Sons of Liberty had sprung
Here young Revere told him what had occurred during
the month of August, when on the tree he was then
gazing at had been found hanging an effigy of Andrew
Oliver,-his majesty's distributer of stamps for the Prov-
ince of Massachusetts, -and a boot, symbolical of Lord
Bute, with Satan peeping out of it as he displayed a copy
of the Stamp Act. John also described the scenes when
the more lawless members of the community destroyed
the building which had been erected as the office for the
sale of stamps, and the dwelling of the Lieutenant Gover-
nor was sacked.
Does your father believe it is by such a course
we can be relieved of oppression ?" Walter asked in
surprise, as John Revere concluded his story with an
account of the violence offered to several others of the
By no means. He was among those who gave public
expressions of regret that such deeds should have been
Then young Revere told of the town-meeting which was
held immediately following the scenes of violence, and by
the time he had concluded, the boys were on North Square
again, where Master Revere was ready to deliver the
message Walter was to take back to Portsmouth.
I have seen Master George Messerve," he said, "and
believe he fully sympathizes with us. He has already
publicly resigned the office of stamp distributer, and I
doubt not will be found on our side when the decisive
Walter understood that with the message given was an
intimation for him to depart, and although he could have
done full justice to a dinner, he took his leave without
There is no question but that Master Revere would
have been more than willing to both feed the young mes-
senger and provide him with sufficient funds to pay his
passage across to Charlestown in the ferry-boat had he
any idea that Walter was penniless. The boy made no
explanations, and his host could not but believe he was
fully and properly prepared for the long journey before
NEAL, THE MILLER.
Walter did not have as good fortune on his return as in
the morning. When he arrived at the shore he saw
several boats going to and fro, but the afternoon was con-
siderably more than half spent before he succeeded in
finding a boatman who would allow him to work his
Then, when he finally landed on the opposite shore,
an hour was spent in searching for the horse, which had
wandered into the woods, and by the time the boy
was ready to begin the return journey the sun hung
low in the sky.
"It will be another night-ride," he muttered, as he
leaped into the saddle. "I did hope to reach Salem early
in the evening, and so I might have done had I been
possessed of enough money to pay my ferriage. Master
Revere would have given it to me, but I could not tell
him that I, who had been received into the ranks of the
Sons of Liberty, had not so much as a shilling."
He was comparatively fresh when he drew rein in front
of Master Cotton's stable shortly before midnight, and
although the time could well have been spent in slumber,
he devoted an hour to caring for the weary steed who had
borne him so bravely.
To awaken Master Cotton was not a portion of Walter's
plan. That gentleman had shown himself to be of such a
timid nature that the young messenger believed he would
not be pleased at receiving any information; therefore, as
soon as the horse had been cared for, he started out of
Salem on foot, intending to make himself a bed on
the ground when he should be within shelter of the
As he walked rapidly on in the cool night air, feeling
refreshed because of the opportunity of stretching his
legs after sitting in the saddle so '..I.-, the desire for
slumber fled from his eyes. There was no reason why he
should halt until he felt drowsy again, and he continued
on, t!il:;i, alternately of what he had accomplished, of
the mill he hoped at some future time to see erected on
the small tract of land bordering the Pascataqua River
which his father had bequeathed him, and of the taxes to
be paid by some means within twenty-four hours of his
With so much to occupy his mind, he forgot his weari-
ness, and the hours went by without his being aware of
the passage of time.
When he first realized how near he was to the starting-
point of his long journey, a rosy light in the east told of
the coming sun, and he marvelled that the night had gone
Half an hour later, as the knowledge of distance
traversed brought with it weariness, and he was about to
seek a thicket where his slumbers would not be disturbed,
a noise as of some one approaching brought him to a full
In another instant he recognized the form of his friend,
Stephen Kidder, in the distance, and he ran toward him,
"What brings you here at this hour, Stephen? "
"I left home at midnight to meet you."
NEAL, THE MILLER.
"Meet me? It would have been easier to have waited
there until I arrived."
It is to prevent your arrival that I have come," and
Stephen had very much the appearance of a bearer of evil
"What is the matter? Why do you look so glum ?
Is my mother well ? "
"Yes; but sorrowing."
S Tell me what has happened."
J' "1'...,r cattle and horses have
L,-.-n sold by the sheriff."
.,_ How can that be ? It is
S.' not forty-eight hours since
I ', ,.' they were attached."
M.'' "That is true; but yet
they have been sold.
:, '.. Samuel Haines is at the
L ', bottom of the mischief,
,' '' and he it was who bought
them. He is now declar-
ing you shall be arrested for stealing his horse,
and Master McCleary sent me to warn you not to come
home until the matter can be arranged."
Not go home Walter repeated, like one bewildered.
"Where, then, shall I go ? "
Your mother bade me ask you why you did not visit
the land on the Pascataqua ? It is not likely you would
be searched for there, and I should be able to find you
whenever it might be necessary."
Walter was silent a few moments, as if trying to under-
stand all that had befallen him, and then said, slowly,-
Haines would never dare to have me arrested. He
took me prisoner unlawfully, and I had a right to make
my escape if possible."
That is very true; yet, because you are one of the
Sons of Liberty, Master McCleary thinks an arrest will
Is it not safe for me to see my mother a few
She herself told me to warn you against coming.
That half-breed, Jim, has been seen near the farm twice
since yesterday noon, and he can be there for no
other purpose than to give notice of your arrival."
But, Stephen, I can't go up the Pascataqua without
some preparation. I must at least have my musket and
ammunition; otherwise, I would stand a good chance of
starving to death."
I have arranged for that portion of the business.
Your knapsack, well filled by your mother, and everything
you may need during a few weeks in the woods, is hidden
a couple of miles down the road. I brought the things as
far away from the farm as I thought necessary, and then
left them in the bushes."
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
T WENTY-FOUR hours after Stephen Kidder had
warned Walter Neal against returning to Portsmouth
the latter was skirting the west bank of the Pascataqua
River, within sight of the tract of land whereon he hoped
to see at some day a grist-mill owned by himself.
When Stephen selected such goods as he thought
Walter might need during his enforced retreat, he did not
neglect anything which would possibly be useful to the
fugitive, and the result was that when the young messenger
started through the pathless forest, his load was so heavy
as to retard his progress very decidedly.
Therefore it was that on the following morning he had
not yet arrived at his proposed destination, although it was
but a comparatively short distance from Portsmouth.
He had slept in the woods where night overtook him,
and at the first faint light of day was making a frugal
breakfast of the bread and cheese sent by his mother.
When the gloom of night had been dispersed by the
heralds of the approaching sun, Walter was at that point
on the river from which he could see the landmarks of his
tract, and the knowledge that he was about to enter on his
own possessions served to cheer his drooping spirits.
If it is necessary to skulk around here in the woods
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
to avoid being seen by Sam Haines, there is no reason
why I should not make the most of my time," he said to
himself, as hope began to spring up once more in his
breast. "There is little chance I shall be able to raise
any money for the mill now, when I have been defrauded
of a goodly portion of my poor possessions, but I can at
least make preparations for the day when I shall be in a
position to carry out my plans. It is better to work than
It was the first time since he took leave of his friend
Stephen that the mental burden had been lightened, and
now he pressed forward eagerly, impatient to begin the
work resolved upon.
There was very much which he could do toward making
ready for the erection of that wished-for mill, and he felt
confident the labour would not be useless, although per-
formed so far in advance of the building operations.
With this idea in mind, his first care was to select the
most advantageous spot for a mill, and to this end he
deposited his burden on the shore of the river, where it
could readily be found again, after which he set about
inspecting the property.
He spent several hours in this work, and had fully
decided upon the location for the building when he was
startled by hearing what sounded very like a human voice
among the underbrush a short distance from the shore.
With his gun held ready for instant use in case any
danger threatened, he went cautiously in the direction
from which the noise appeared to have come, and after a
NEAL, THE AIILLER.
brief time threw aside the weapon with an exclamation of
In a dense portion of the forest, where were several
aged trees partially decayed at their base, he dimly saw
the figure of a man, apparently pinned to the ground by
the heavy branches of a fallen hemlock.
He was sufficiently versed in woodcraft to understand
that the unfortunate had either felled a tree which had
fallen upon him, or passed beneath one of the giants of
the forest at the precise moment when its rotten trunk
gave way under the burden of the enormous top.
A low moan from the sufferer told he was yet alive,
and at the same time proclaimed that relief must soon
come if death was to be cheated of its prey.
Hold out a few minutes longer, friend," Walter cried,
cheerily. I must have an axe before I can do very
much toward getting you free from that timber."
There was no reply; the poor wretch's strength was
nearly exhausted, and the boy understood that he must
work with all possible speed if he would save a human
It seems that my coming here may be of more use
than simply hiding from Sam Haines," he cried, as he ran
with all speed toward the spot where the goods had been
left. I have been grumbling because Stephen brought
an axe instead of a hatchet, but now I should be able to
do very little without it."
Ten minutes later he was chopping furiously at the
imprisoning branches, using due care to prevent additional
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
injury to the helpless man, and when so much of the
foliage had been cut away as to give him a clear view of
what was beneath, he exclaimed in surprise, -
An Indian! What could have brought him so near
the town ?"
Then he forgot the colour of the sufferer, thought not
of what his kind had done in the way of savage cruelty to
helpless women and children, but devoted all his strength
and energies to releasing him.
The wretch was so nearly dead as to be unable to
render any assistance to his would-be rescuer, and at
least half an hour elapsed before Walter could drag him
from beneath the heavy weight which had so nearly
deprived him of life.
\When this work was accomplished, it seemed to have
been in vain, so far as saving life was concerned; but,
fortunately, Walter did not cease his efforts. D. -.'
the apparently lifeless body to the river, he applied such
restoratives as were at hand, and after a short time had
the satisfaction of seeing the red man open his eyes.
"Better not try," he said, as the Indian attempted to
speak. You have had such a squeezing as would dis-
courage a bear, and it will take some time to get over it.
Luckily I haven't much of anything to do except take
care of you, and I '11 warrant we shall soon have you
around as well as ever. So far as I can make out, no
bones have been broken, though I doubt if you could go
through the same experience again and come out any-
where near whole."
NEAL, THE MILLER.
There was nothing more he could do to relieve the
sufferer, and after cautioning him to remain quiet, Walter
set about putting up some kind of a shelter against the
A "lean-to" of brush was soon erected, and in one
corner the boy made a bed of fir boughs, upon which he
placed the sufferer, who, after the first attempt, made no
effort to speak.
Walter divided with the Indian his store of bread and
cheese, and had the satisfaction of seeing the latter eat
I reckon you're all right if you can get away with as
much food as a well person, and it's time I did something
toward laying in a stock of provisions. Will you stay
here while I go after game ? There are partridges enough,
even though deer should be shy."
"I wait," the Indian said, with a sigh as of relief; and
the boy, gun in hand, plunged into the thicket.
The result of this first hunting excursion was half a
dozen plump birds, and Walter had seen such signs as
told he would have but little difficulty in bagging a deer
on the following morning.
During the remainder of the day Walter acted as nurse
and cook; but never once did the Indian speak.
Next morning, before the sun appeared, he was out to
replenish the larder, returning with the hind-quarters of
a deer; and, when a plentiful supply of steaks from these
had been broiled over the coals, the Indian ate like one
in perfect health.
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
"You'll do now, I reckon. It doesn't stand to reason
that you feel like moving around very much, therefore you
shall stay here while I go to work."
Then he set about making the foundations for a mill
that might never be completed, and when it was so dark
that he could no longer see to work, he felt satisfied with
the progress made.
The Indian had cooked supper, and the boy showed
that he appreciated the culinary efforts, rude though they
You know Jim Albert? "
This question was asked when an hour had been spent
in almost perfect silence by the occupants of the lean-to,
and the boy was startled both by the name and the
"Yes; I know him," Walter replied, grimly, thinking of
the part played in his capture by the half-breed.
"Big rascal! "
"You 're right. I know it is n't just the thing to give
way to revengeful thoughts, but some day that scoun-
drel shall answer to me for what has been done. If he
and Sam Haines had remained where they belonged, I
would n't be here hiding as if I really was a thief."
The Indian did not continue the conversation, although
Walter gave him every encouragement, and at an early
hour the tired boy sought the repose to be found in
When he set out for work next morning the Indian
accompanied him, and during the day laboured faithfully
iAEAL, TIE MILLER.
hewing trees, or gathering rocks which were to form the
foundation of the proposed mill.
"I did n't fancy having an Indian for a companion at
first, but it begins to look as if finding him under that
tree would be a fortunate thing for me. We are getting
this place into shape very fast, and when it is possible for
me to raise the money, it won't be necessary to spend
very much time making ready for the more serious
portion of the work."
During the week which followed, with the exception of
the Sabbath, the two laboured industriously, save at such
time as one or the other spent in hunting, and Walter
could see the outlines of the structure he intended one
day to build.
A large pile of rocks had been rolled together to form
the lower walls, huge timbers were hewn and roughly
"squared" for the framework, and a road from the river-
bank to the highway, four miles distant, was "blazed" a
goodly portion of the way.
During all this time, while he had laboured as industri-
ously as if it was some project of his own, the Indian
remained comparatively silent. He had told the rescuer
his name was Sewatis; that he was a member of the
Penobscot tribe, and acquainted with "Jim Albert," but
never a word regarding the reason for being in that
There had been no scarcity of food; the forest teemed
with game, and if the labourers fancied deer, bear or
birds, it was only necessary to go a short distance from
the encampment in order to get it.
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
Almost unconsciously Walter had explained to his
assistant what it was he hoped to do. There had been
many times when it seemed positively necessary he should
speak with some one, and to the silent Indian the boy
talked freely. It was as if thinking aloud, because no
reply was made unless one was absolutely required; and
it is quite possible the young messenger would have been
greatly surprised had some one been there to tell him he
had confided more fully in Sewatis than in any other
person except his mother.
More than once had Walter suggested that there was
no reason why the Indian should remain if he had busi-
I suppose you think because I pulled you from under
that tree you must stay here and work, but it is all a
mistake. You have already repaid me ten-fold, and I
don't want you to believe there is any necessity of stop-
ping with me."
Me wait," Sewatis would say, whenever the conversa-
tion touched upon this subject, and by the end of a week
Walter would have felt decidedly lonely without his silent
There's one thing about it," the boy said once, when
the Indian had refused to leave him, "while you are here
I feel as if I could learn at any time how matters are at
home. It would n't be much of a task for you to go into
Portsmouth ? "
Sewatis made a gesture which signified that such a
journey would be as nothing.
NEAL, THE MILLER.
"I think you had better go and see my mother pres-
ently. Of course she won't be worrying about me, for
she knows I am able to take care of myself; but at the
same time it will give her some satisfaction to know what
I am doing. You could find my mother?"
And it would n't be too hard work for you to tell her
what we have done."
Another nod, and something very like a smile on the
silent Indian's lips.
If you don't open your mouth to her any oftener than
you do to me, you might stay on the farm a year without
her knowing what we have been doing."
"I tell all; make heap much talk."
"Then we'll start you off about day after to-morrow.
How long would you want for the journey?"
"Go to-day, back to-morrow."
"Of course you understand it wouldn't do to say a
word about me to Jim Albert, or any one whom he
knows ? "
"Jim Albert, rascal!-I fix him."
But you must n't get into trouble while you are there,
Sewatis, or I should n't see you back again very soon.
The white men wouldn't allow any fighting in town,
and there is no reason why you should settle with Jim
Albert on my account."
"I fix him," Sewatis repeated; and Walter began to
fancy it might not be prudent to send the Indian into
the town, however eager he was to learn what Master
McCleary had done in his behalf.
ON THE PASCATAQUA.
He argued the matter for some time with his com-
panion, receiving only the same reply, and then aban-
doned the attempt.
"It is certain Sewatis won't tell many secrets, whoever
he may meet, or whatever trouble he may get into, there-
fore I need feel no anxiety on that score. Perhaps it will
be as well to let him go, and take the
chances of his not meeting the half-
The next day was the Sa:.i:.u .h.
and the two remained in camp. .'.
doing nothing save to prepare .,
the meals. '
Next morning Wal- 'i -
ter set about hewing 'I
timber, and Sewatis
was sent into the forest
after game, for the larder was
not as well filled as it should be.
The Indian was absent the greater portion of the day,
and when he returned, Walter was half a mile from the
camp, up the river.
"What's the matter?" the boy asked, as the Indian
approached suddenly, looking disturbed.
"White man come; down shore, huntin' for trail! "
Walter dropped his axe in dismay. He could think of
but one reason why any person should seek him, and that
was to arrest him for stealing Samuel Haines's horse.
"They must n't see me," he muttered. "Go back to
66 NEAL, THE MILLER.
the camp, that they may think it is you who has been
doing this work, and I will strike off into the forest."
Sewatis handed Walter the gun, and silently turned to
retrace his steps.
WX ALTER'S first impulse was to bury himself in the
depths of the forest, and he had already started
toward the denser portion when the thought occurred to
him that he was reasonably safe in the vicinity of the
camp, where he would be able to learn when the new-
comer retraced his steps.
"If it is a white man I'11 guarantee to keep out of his
way, and yet remain near enough to hear what may be
said," he muttered to himself, as he halted suddenly, and
then moved cautiously toward the lean-to.
After ten minutes had elapsed he could distinguish the
sound of voices, and a few seconds later he was running at
full speed toward the person from whom he had previously
been trying to escape.
He recognized the speaker's tones, and knew Stephen
Kidder had come to pay a visit, or bring the cheering
news that he might return.
"Am I to go back to town?" he cried, as he came into
the cleared space wherein the camp had been built; and
then, seeing Sewatis standing in a threatening attitude in
front of the shanty, he added, "This is a friend of mine;
make him welcome."
The Indian obeyed by moving quickly out of sight
NAEAL, THE MILLER.
among the foliage, and he had hardly disappeared when
the two clasped each other's hands in a caressing way, as
I wish I had come to bid you go home; but Master
McCleary says you must have patience yet a little longer.
Haines still threatens to have you arrested, and the Sons
of Liberty are more obnoxious than ever in the eyes of
those who pay homage to the king."
"Would Governor Wentworth, who has so often spoken
in a friendly tone to me, allow an act of injustice such as
my arrest would be, for I simply sought to escape from
him who held me unlawfully? "
The members of the Council are not in accord with
the new ideas, and Master McCleary believes they might
allow Haines, who has no slight influence among them, to
do as he desires."
"Let it be so, then. When did you see my mother last ?"
"And she is well ?"
"Well, and contented that you should be here. She is
cared for by your friends in town, and prefers that you
remain until the winter comes, rather than venture back
to be thrown into prison."
"You say she is cared for?"
"Master McCleary attends to it that she wants for
nothing. She is now with his mother; the crops have
been harvested, and there is no longer reason why any-
one should stay on the farm. There have been brave
doings in town since you left, and unless the Sons of
Liberty are all imprisoned, it looks as if we might some
day be freed from the heavy burden of taxes."
"Tell me everything!" and Walter threw himself on the
ground in front of the camp, looking positively happy,
now he had been assured his mother did not suffer
because of his absence.
"In the first place, the New Hampshire Gazette
appeared with a heavy mourning border on the day before
the Stamp Act was to go into effect, and Master McCleary
read aloud to the people on the street the article calling
upon those who would be free men to resist this most
unjust tax. If so many of the best citizens had not been
abroad that night, I believe the Governor would have
called the guards out; but there were too many prominent
men mingled with the throng to make such a proceeding
safe or possible. On the first day of November the
church bells were tolled, as if for a funeral, and when a
large crowd had gathered near Samuel Leavitt's store, a
figure called the Goddess of Liberty was brought out on a
bier, with Thomas Pickerin, John Jones, Jotham Lewis
and Nehemiah Yartridge acting as pall-bearers.
"All the people on the streets, myself among the
number, followed the procession to where a grave had
been dug, and when the image was about to be buried,
Jotham Lewis called out that he thought he perceived
some signs of life in Liberty. With that the statue was
carried back to Master Leavitt's store, and Master
McCleary addressed the assembled throng, saying that if
the Goddess could be restored to health her Sons were
VEAL, THE MILLER.
the ones to do it. He was greeted with mighty cheers,
such as must have been heard even at the Governor's
house; and when the tumult had died away, Master George
Messerve declared that he did not intend to accept the
and next morning all who are known as belonging to that
association marched around the town, carrying the parch-
ments like a banner, on the point of a sword.
i J ~Ii', ;I
-. -- --, ",I
office the king had bestowed upon him. He then delivered
his commission and instructions to the Sons of Liberty,
and next morning all who are known as belonging to that
association marched around the town, carrying the parch-
ments like a banner, on the point of a sword.
Master Messerve then took his oath before Justice
Claget that he would not attempt to issue stamps, and the
commission was given to the captain of the Saucy Mary,'
who is sworn to deliver it up to the Commissioners of the
Stamp Office in London immediately upon his arrival in
England. You see, matters have changed considerably
since the day you started out to deliver a message to
"If I had only been there!" Walter exclaimed, when
Stephen ceased speaking from sheer lack of breath.
You would not have seen much of the bravery, I fear.
The Sons of Liberty could not attempt to prevent your
being made a prisoner on the charge of stealing, however
well they understand the case; for that would, as Master
McCleary says, be too much like trying to overthrow all
law and order, whereas they profess only to battle against
What is injustice, if not imprisoning me on such a
You understand what I mean, Walter. Haines does
not think for a moment that you would be declared guilty;
but by making the arrest he can have revenge, since you
must lay in jail some time before being brought to trial."
Yes, yes; I understand it all. But there are times
when I feel bitterly the necessity of remaining in hiding,
as if I was in fact a criminal. Have you any more
"A messenger from Boston told of effigies of certain
persons being burned, or hung on the gallows, and from
NEAL, THE MILLER.
the reports I think it safe to say there has been quite
as much excitement in that city over the Stamp Act as in
Portsmouth. People who a few weeks ago denounced the
Sons of Liberty as seditious persons, now speak of them
with respect, saving as in the case of Haines and his
following. Master Leavitt declares the time has arrived
when the Province of New Hampshire shall rule herself,
and that unless the king shows a more friendly disposition,
he will lose his possessions in America; but of course
anything of that kind cannot happen."
Greater deeds have been done."
"But not by a few people against so mighty a king. I
am afraid we shall all be made to suffer because of what
has already been done against his majesty's commands."
If the people can prevent the use of stamps they can
do very much more; but we won't talk of such matters
now. It is enough that I have with me a friend with
whom I can speak, and I must make the most of your
company while you are here."
"Then suppose you begin by telling me where you
found the Indian ? "
Walter gave his friend a detailed account of all that had
happened since the two parted in the woods ten days
previous, and concluded by showing him what progress
had been made toward the erection of the mill.
Stephen was astonished because of the amount of work
which had been performed, and said, laughingly,-
Indeed, I begin to think Samuel Haines did you a
favour when he made it necessary for you to hide in this
place. At the rate you have been labouring, the mill will
be in working order within a month."
It would, for a certainty, if I had the necessary
materials, which can only be procured with money. I
truly believe Sewatis and I could do very nearly the whole
of the task."
There 's no question about it. Shall you try to frame
the building ? "
"Yes, so far as to get the timbers hewn; but we could
not make shift to raise it without assistance, and what
lumber we have in shape will not be hurt by seasoning,
although I do not use it for two years. Now let me
show you where I propose to locate the road in order best
to accommodate those living this side of Portsmouth."
Stephen was more interested in the progress of Walter's
work than in the stirring events he had just been describ-
ing, and the remainder of the day was spent by the two
young men in discussing every detail connected with the
Shortly before nightfall Sewatis returned to camp with
a fine buck, and prepared the evening meal after his own
fashion, which was certainly a fashion not to be despised.
It was Stephen's intention to return to Portsmouth on
the following morning, and the friends sat around the
camp-fire until a late hour that evening. Walter had many
messages to send to his mother and Master McCleary, and
if the messenger remembered them all his memory must
have been prodigious.
Finally, the young men crept into the lean-to where
NEAL, THE MILLER.
Sewatis lay, apparently sleeping, and very shortly after
they had stretched themselves out on the fragrant fir
boughs their eyes were closed in slumber.
Then, if a spectator had been in the vicinity, would
have been witnessed a singular scene.
Soon after the heavy breathing of the white men told
that they were in the land of dreams, Sewatis rose to
a sitting posture, listened intently, although nothing could
be heard save the cries of the night-birds and the usual
sounds of a forest when the mantle of darkness has fallen.
The Indian lay down again; but even as his head
touched the fir he began to slip softly toward the fire
until his body was outside the shelter of the lean-to.
Then he rolled over and over until the bushes hid him
completely, and no sound came to tell of his whereabouts.
Ten minutes after he disappeared a face peered from
amid the foliage, and the odour of rum might have been
detected upon the air.
The sleepers were suddenly awakened by a crashing
amid the underbrush, and as they leaped to their feet,
awake and on the alert in an instant, Walter cried,-
Look out, there! don't shoot! One of those is
Sewatis ; but who is he struggling with ? "
At that moment the combatants rolled toward the fire
in such a manner that the faces of both could be seen,
and Stephen cried,-
"It's Jim Albert! Look out for yourself, Walter; he
has come here for mischief "
"And he seems to be getting about as much as he
wants," Walter replied, grimly, as he darted forward to
assist Sewatis in case it should become necessary.
The Indian did not require aid, for before either of the
boys could have interfered, he was uppermost, clutching
Jim Albert by the throat so vigorously that the latter's
tongue was protruding from his mouth.
Don't kill him! Don't kill him! Walter shouted.
Not yet; big rascal! Sewatis muttered, as he deftly
tied his blanket around the upper portion of the prisoner's
body in such a manner that the intruder was helpless to
do anything save kick, and that was not a pleasant form
of exercise, as he soon learned, for the fire was so near
that at the first attempt his toes were buried among the
After that painful experience the prisoner remained
quiet, and in a few seconds Sewatis had him trussed hand
and foot, like a chicken ready for roasting.
Me fix him! heap big rascal! the captor exclaimed,
lying down once more as unconcernedly as if nothing
out of the usual course of events had transpired.
"What do you suppose this fellow came here for?"
Stephen asked, as if unable to surmise the reason for Jim
"He is in the pay of Sam Haines, and tracked you,
most likely, in order to discover my hiding-place."
"If that had been the case he would have been in
Portsmouth again by this time."
A sudden thought came to Walter, and bending over
the prisoner quickly, he searched under his greasy belt.
INEAL, THE MILLER.
"That is why he came!" the boy cried, as he leaped
to his feet, holding a parchment in his hand. "The half-
breed had undertaken to arrest me, and here is his
Not until Stephen had examined the document carefully
was he satisfied the statement was correct, and then he
said, holding the parchment over the fire,-
We can dispose of this easily enough, but what shall
be done with Jim is more than I can decide."
Before he could drop the document from his fingers
Sewatis leaped from his couch, seized the warrant, and
went back to his slumbers, saying, as he did so,-
"Heap big rascal! me keep talkin'-skin."
We shall have to let the Indian take care of Jim and
his belongings whether we want to or not," Walter said,
with a mournful smile. "The whole affair shows me,
however, that I am not secure from Sam Haines even
here in the woods. He has found one messenger, and can
readily get another."
Now, don't despair. Your red friend has some
scheme in his head, or I'm mistaken. He has taken such
good care of the fellow that we need n't worry about him,
and if I am to leave this place at daylight, it's time I got
Stephen resumed his place on the bed, and Walter
followed his example, but not to rest.
He had believed himself free from all pursuit while he
remained in the forest, and during the past hour had been
shown how vain was that idea.
STEPHEN I KIDDE. 79
The stillness of the night, the soothing sounds of the
foliage, moved to and fro by the gentle wind, soon lulled
him to sleep, despite his anxiety ; and when he next opened
his eyes the sun was shining directly upon him through
the leaves; but neither Sewatis nor the prisoner could be
Walter leaped to his feet, searched to and fro several
moments in vain, and then found a trail leading eastward
across the river.
Sewatis had returned to his own tribe, and with him
had gone, however unwillingly, James Albert and the
warrant for the young messenger's arrest.
STEPHEN was naturally surprised when, on being
awakened, he was informed of the departure of
Sewatis with the prisoner; but he did not regard it as a
matter of any very great importance, save as it indicated
that the disreputable half-breed would not probably be
seen in Portsmouth again.*
Most likely Jim Albert did some wrong to the mem-
bers of Sewatis's tribe, and that is why the old fellow hung
around here, waiting for just such a chance as he finally
got. I don't see why we should trouble our heads
I am sorry Sewatis has gone. In addition to being of
great assistance to me, he was a companion, and now I
shall be entirely alone."
"In that way it has worked you an injury," Stephen
replied, carelessly; "but on the other hand, you need not
fear the half-breed will hunt you down again in behalf of
Sam Haines, which is more than a fair off-set."
Walter made no reply; a sensation of utter loneliness
such as he never before experienced had come over him,
and he would have been better pleased to know James
Albert was seeking an opportunity to arrest him, pro-
SE WTA TIS.
viding that by such a change in the situation of affairs
Sewatis had remained.
It was useless to give words to his troubles, however,
and he did his best to appear contented, lest Stephen
should carry to his mother the report that her son
had lost courage.
Walter prepared the morning meal; Stephen did full
justice to it, and then made ready to take his departure.
I will come again within a week or ten days. What
shall I bring?"
Powder, if you can buy it for me on credit."
"I fancy Master McCleary will provide you with
Say to my mother that I suffer for nothing save the
opportunity to see her. She knows full well what other
words I would speak if she were here."
With a hearty clasp of the hands the two friends
separated, Stephen to make his way through the forest
ten miles or more, and Walter to resume the labour which
might prove useless.
The would-be miller found it very difficult to continue
at his task during that day. More than once he almost
decided to remain idle until word should come that he was
at liberty to return home; but then he remembered the
goal he had set for himself, and laboured more indus-
triously than before.
It was no longer possible, now he was alone, to move
the larger logs, and all he could do was to hew them into
shape, without an attempt to remove the timbers to
the site of the mill.
NEAL, THE MILLER.
The days passed slowly and wearily. The Sabbath
seemed to have in it three times the usual number of
hours. He indulged in hunting only when it became
he should have food,
for the supply of
powder bid fair to be
exhausted before the
time set for Stephen's
A week elapsed,
and the young exile
grew more cheerful.
His friend must soon
come. As for Se-
watis, Walter did not
believe he would ever
see him again.
At the close of the
eighth day, when the
solitary supper had
been cooked and eat-
en, more as one per-
forms an important
duty than something
to be enjoyed, Walter
was lying on the bed of boughs, dreaming of the time he
could return home without fear of an unjust arrest, when
a shadow came between his eyes and the fire.
SE WA TIS.
Springing up in alarm, he seized the musket, which
stood where it could be reached handily, and made ready
to defend himself, for it seemed certain Sam Haines or
one of his emissaries had come to carry him to jail.
Sewatis stood before him.
One would have said that the Indian had been absent
but. a few moments, and was wholly at a loss to understand
the look of surprise on the boy's face.
"I thought you were never coming back!" Walter
cried, in a tone of most intense relief.
Come to see mill," the Indian replied, as he seated
himself and began to eat a deer-steak which had been
left near the fire.
I am beginning to fear you will never see one of
mine," the boy said, despondently. "I have been fool-
ish enough to think I could borrow as much as would be
needed, while money is so scarce in this province."
Build mill next day," Sewatis said, more indistinctly
than usual, because his mouth was full of meat.
Walter understood the Indian to mean that he would
continue the work on the morrow, and was not particu-
larly interested in the proposed labour, for during the time
he had been alone the possibility of ever getting a suffi-
cient capital seemed an obstacle which could not be
What did you do with Jim Albert ? "
"Big rascal! Jim gone Castine; never come back."
Castine, eh ? Well, you took him far enough away, at
NEAL, THE MILLER.
Heap rascal fetch heap money," and Sewatis drew
from beneath his blanket a bag which, on being opened,
proved to be filled with gold pieces. Hundred pound;
more Jim worth alive."
It was some time before Walter could understand the
Indian's meaning, and then the thought came that he had
heard some one say the half-breed came to Ports-
mouth from the Penobscot River.
Do you mean that there was a price set on Jim's
head ? he asked, eagerly.
"Hundred pound," and Sewatis held up the bag once
more. Now build mill."
But I have nothing to do with that," Walter cried,
as the Indian pushed the money toward him.
But I surely can't do it with your money, you must
Because it -you know I could n't."
Would from white man ? "
"That is different. If Master McCleary or Master
Leavitt would lend it to me, taking a mortgage to secure
Sewatis pushed his bag toward Walter once more, and
when the latter shook his head, as if to refuse the loan, or
gift, which ever it might be called, the Indian rose to his
feet, pulling his blanket more closely around him.
What is the matter ? Where are you going ?"
Sewatis pointed toward the east, and moved slowly
SE WA TIS.
Come back !" Walter cried, entreatingly. Come
back and help me as you did before."
"Build mill?" and the Indian touched the bag of
money with his foot.
Do you mean that you won't stay unless I use that
Suppose I did take it ?"
The Indian seated himself as if to show he would
It was fully an hour before Walter spoke again, and
during that time he pondered over the matter in all its
bearings. It seemed much like taking an undue advan-
tage of Sewatis to use his money, and yet there could be
no question but that he was pained when it was refused.
"I don't know why the fact of his being an Indian
should prevent me from accepting the offer," the boy
said to himself. "I would be perfectly willing to receive
a loan from Master Leavitt, who has never shown half the
friendship for me this red man has."
Sewatis watched him intently, and finally pushed the
"Yes, I will take it," Walter said, decidedly. "It is
only to be loaned, and until I can pay it back you shall
have half the profits of the business."
Sewatis nodded in approbation.
And you are to stay here with me ?"
"All time; now I call Injuns."
Walter was wholly at a loss to understand the meaning
VEAL, 'THE MILLER.
of this remark until Sewatis rose to his feet, uttering a
cry that might well have been mistaken for a night-owl.
In response to it, half a dozen red men, each carrying a
burden, came out from among the trees, and depositing
their heavy loads in the lean-to, seated themselves before
the fire in silence.
Sewatis motioned for Walter to look at that which had
been brought, and while the latter wonderingly obeyed, he
cut from the haunch of venison a sufficient number of
steaks to serve as a hearty meal for the new-comers.
The boy's surprise may be imagined when he discov-
ered that each of the packages was made up of furs, and
he understood that the value of the whole lot greatly
exceeded the amount of money in the bag.
Big mill," Sewatis said, in a tone of satisfaction, and
then he turned his attention to his followers, leaving
Walter to speculate upon the good fortune which had
come to him so unexpectedly.
The Indians remained in camp during that night, and
at daybreak, after a breakfast of venison, all save Sewatis
Never before had Walter worked as he did on the day
succeeding the Indian's return. It was a perfect fever of
industry, superinduced by the knowledge that there was
now nothing to prevent the consummation of his desires
save that which could be done by hands.
His companion appeared as before the coming of Jim
Albert, with a single exception, and that was at the close
of the fatiguing day's work, when he pointed to a slight
' SE WA TIS.
elevation overlooking the site of the proposed mill, and
Sewatis build house there."
So you shall, and between the two of us I reckon we
can run the business as it should be."
Two days more the boy and his friend worked during
every moment of daylight, and then came Stephen Kidder.
Master McCleary is just behind me," he cried, before
Walter could greet him.
Master McCleary! Why has he come? Is there
more danger for me? "
You are free to go to Portsmouth this day. Samuel
Haines has sailed for England, and there is little chance
he will ever return."
Before Walter could realize the full bearing which
Haines's departure would have upon his own affairs,
Andrew McCleary came into view.
"It is a brave spot, my lad, and you have done well to
choose it. Master Leavitt gives me great encouragement
in regard to advancing the money, but stipulates that he
shall be made a partner in the enterprise, you to pay him
interest on the entire amount until your debt of one-half
I shall not need his money, for I already have a
partner who neither demands interest nor a portion of the
profits," Walter replied, laughingly; and then he told his
now mystified friends of what Sewatis had done.
McCleary insisted upon taking the Indian by the hand
as he praised him, but not a word, either good or bad,
could he persuade Sewatis to speak.
NEAL, THE MILLER.
The mill was built and opened for business four months
after the repeal of the Stamp Act, and Sewatis insisted on
pouring into the hopper the first bushel of corn brought
to be ground.
This much regarding Walter Neal and his friends is
known through the writings of others, and the next
mention which is made of either person immediately
connected with this story is found in Belknap's History
of New Hampshire" regarding the battle of Bunker Hill,
where he writes concerning the three New Hampshire
regiments which were mustered into the service of
The two former were present in the memorable
battle on the heights on Charlestown, being posted on the
left wing, behind a fence, from which they sorely galled
the British as they advanced to the attack, and cut them
down by whole ranks at once. In their retreat they lost
several men, and among others the brave Major Andrew
McCleary, who was killed by a cannon shot after he had
passed the Isthmus of Charlestown."
A letter now before the writer of this story, signed by
Walter Neal and addressed to his mother at Portsmouth,
tells of his service during the battle, while he was a
member of the regiment to which Andrew McCleary was
attached, and in it the miller says:
Tell Sewatis that our noble friend is no more. He
has given his life for his country, and when America takes
her place among nations, McCleary's name will stand out
bright as the sun."