The Baldwin Library
.~~9~~ ~ J47 ~.0'!
THE WIDOW'S POT OF OIL.
MRS. M. H. ADAMS
Word of Truth, and Gift of Love,
Waiting hearts now need thee;
Faithful in thy mission prove,
On that mission speed thee.
PUBLISHED BY JAMES M. USHER,
No. 37 Oornhill.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, by
[AMES M. USHER,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Massachusetts
RROM me encouragement extended to our worthy
publisher on the presentation of the first and second
volumes of the Annual, we conclude that the experi-
ment of 1845 may be regarded as a successful one, and
the preparation of a little work of this kind an accept-
able offering to the young
The present year, our kind contributors have afforded
us a much more ample supply of interesting articles
than could possibly appear. We regret fhat any who
have so generously labored for us and our young
friends, should be denied the pleasure of greeting their
articles on the pages of the Annual. Let them not
suspect that it is from any disapproval or rejection of
their labors. Be assured, dear friends, we are more
grateful than can properly be expresseA in a brief
preface. Our warmest thanks are due our old friends,
who, in the midst of other arduous duties, have wil-
lingly given us assistance. Let our new correspon-
dents be assured they are gratefully remembered,
although we have not the pleasure or opportunity to
present their articles to our readers in the present
volume. They are at the publisher's disposal for
May the blessing of our Father in heaven rest upon
the little book and all its mends.
Small Means and Great Ends, .. ... 11
Mary Elleen, .. .. ..... ..... .
The Dead Child to its Mother, .. .. 22
Hope, ..................... 23
The Young Soldier,. .............. 27
The Stolen Children, . ..... 29
My Grandmother's Cottage, .......... 45
The First Oath, ..... ... ........ 50
The Fairy's Gift, ...... ........... 56
A Lesson taught by Nature, . ... .60
Florence Drew,....... ............. 69
Shechem, ........... ....... 75
The Little Candle, . . .... 79
" Are we not all Brothers and Sisters ?" ...... .81
Fortune-Telling,. ............... 85
The Boy who Stole the Nails, . .... 92
The Childless Mother,. . . ..... 98
The Motherless Child, .. . . ..105
Faith,b ................. .113
The Snow-Birds, ......... ... .114
Mount Carmel,........ .. .......119
The Philosophy of Life, ........... 123
The Starving Poor of Ireland, ...... .133
The Sabbath-School Festival, ...... .135
Nelly Grey, .................. 139
The Four Evangelists, .... ........ 148
May-Day, ................... 155
The Snow-Drop, .... .. ... ... .160
Caging Birds, ............... 162
Last Page, ................... 170
SMALL MEANS AND GREAT ENDS;
THE WIDOW'S POT OF OIL.
BY JULIA A. FLETCHER.
OH! how I do wish I was rich!" said Eliza
Melvyn, dropping her work in her lap, and look-
ing up discontentedly to her mother; why should
not I be rich as well as Clara Payson ? There
she passes in her father's carriage, with her fine
clothes, and haughty ways; while I sit here-
sew-sewing-all day long. I don't see what
se I am in the world!
"Why should it be so ? Why should one. person
have bread to waste, while another is starving I
Why should one sit idle all day, while another
toils all night? Why should one have so many
blessings, and another so few ?"
"Eliza!" said Mrs. Melvyn, taking her daugh-
ter's hand gently within her own, and pushing
back the curls from her flushed brow, "my
daughter, why is this why is your usual con-
tentment gone, and why are you so sinfully comr
12 SMALL MEANS AND GREAT ENDS.
plaining ? Have you forgotten to think that God
is ever good ?'"
No, mother," replied the young girl, but it
sometimes appears strange to me, why he allows
all these things."
"Wiser people than either you or I have been
led to wonder at these things," said Mrs. Melvyn;
"but the Christian sees in all the wisdom of God,
who allows us to be tried here, and will overrule
all for our good. The very person who is en-
vied for one blessing perhaps envies another for
one he does not possess. But why would you
be rich, my child ?"
Mother, I went this morning through a nar-
row, dirty street in another part of the city. A
group of ragged children were collected round one
who was crying bitterly. I made my way through
them and spoke to the little boy. He told me his
little sister was dead, his father was sick, and he
was hungry. Here was sorrow enough for any
one; but the little boy stood there with his bare
feet, his sunbleached hair and tattered clothes,
and smiled almost cheerfully through the tears
which washed white streaks amid the darkness
of his dirty face. He led me to his home. Oh,
Mother! if you had been with me up those broken
stairs, and seen the helpless beings in that dismal,
dirty room you would have wished, like me, for
SMALL MEANS AND GREAT ENDS.
the means to help them. The dead body lay
there unburied, for the man said, they had no
money to pay for a coffin. He was dying him-
self, and they might as well be buried together."
Are you sure, Eliza, that you have not the
means to help them?" asked Mrs. Melvyn. "Put
on your bonnet, my dear, and go to our sexton.
Tell him to go and do what should be done. The
charitable society of which I am a member will
pay the expense. Then call on Dr.- the dis-
pensary physician, and send him to the relief of
the sick one. Then go to those of your acquaint-
ance who have, as you say,' bread to waste,' and
mention to them this hungry little boy. If you
have no money to give these sufferers, you have
a voice to plead with those who have; and thus
you may bless the poor, while you doubly bless
the rich, for It is more blessed to give than to
Eliza obeyed, and when she returned several
hours after, her face growing with animation, and
eagerly recounted how much had been done for
the poor family; how'their dead had been hu-
manely borne from their sight; how the sick man
was visited by the physician, and his bitterness of
spirit removed by the sympathy which was sent
him; how the room was to be cleaned and ventir
lated. and how she left the little boy eating a huge
J4 SMALL MEANS AND GREAT ENDS.
slice of bread, while others of the family were
half devouring the remainder of the loaf; her
mother listened with the same gentleness. "It
is well, my daughter," said she; I preferred to
send you on this errand of sympathy, that you
might see how much you could do with small
I have a picture here," she continued, which
I wish you to keep as a token of this day's feel-
ings and actions. It is called The Widow's Pot
of Oil.' Will you read me the story which be-
longs to it?"
Eliza took her little pocket Bible, the one that
she always carried to the Sabbath school, and,
turning to the fourth chapter of the second book
of Kings, read the first seven verses. Turn to
them now, children, and read them.
You can see in this picture," said her mother,
"how small was the 'pot of oil,' and how large
were some of the vessels to be filled. Yet still
it flowed on, a little stream; still knelt the widow
in her faith, patiently supporting it; still brought
her little sons the empty vessels; the blessing of
God was upon it, and they were all filled. She
feared not that the oil would cease to flow; she
stopped not when one vessel was.filled; she still
believed, and labored, and waited, until her work
SMALL MEANS AND GREAT ENDS. 1f
"Take this picture,Ay daughter, and when
you think that ,aa cannot do good with small
means, rememrl' 'the widow's pot of oil,' and
perseveringly use the means you have; when one
labor is done, begin another; stitch by stitch
you have made this beautiful garment; very large
houses are built of little bricks patiently joined
together one by one; and 'the widow's small pot
of oil' filled many large vessels."
Oh, mother," said Eliza," I hope I shall never
be so wicked again. I will keep the picture al-
ways. But, mother, do you not think Mr. Usher
would like this picture to put in the Sabbath
School Annual' l He might have a smaller one
engraved from this, you know, and perhaps cousin
Julia will write something about it. I mean to
A SKETCH FROM LIFE.
BY MRS. MARGARET M. MASON.
"O, lightly, lightly tread!
A holy thing is sleep
On the worn spirit shed,
And eyes that wake to weep;
Ye know not what ye do,
That call the slumberer back
From the world unseen by you,
Unto life's dim faded track."
How beautiful, calm, and peaceful is sleep!
Often, when I have laid my head upon my pil-
low happy and healthful, I have asked myself,
to what shall I awaken? What changes may
come ere again my head shall press this pillow ?
Ah, little do we know what a day may unfold to
us! We know not to what we shall awaken;
what joy or sorrow. -I do not know when I was
awakened to more painful intelligence, than
when aroused one morning from pleasant dreams
by the voice of a neighbor, saying that Mary
Ellen, the only daughter of a near neighbor, was
dying. She was a beautiful little girl, about three
years of age, unlike most other children. She
was more serious and thoughtful; and many
predicted that her friends would not have her
long. She would often ask strange questions
about heaven and her heavenly Father; and
many of her expressions were very beautiful
One day she asked permission of-her mother
to go and gather her some flowers. Her mother
gave her permission, but requested her not to go
out of the field. After searching in vain for
flowers, she returned with some clover leaves
and blades of grass. "Mother," said she, "I
could find you no flowers, but here are some
spires of grass and clover leaves. Say that they
are some pretty, mother. GOD made them."
Often, when she woke in the morning, she would
ask her mother if it was the Sabbath day. If
told it was, Then," she would say, we will
read the Bible and keep the day holy." Her
mother always strove to render the Sabbath in.
teresting to her, and to have her spend it in a
profitable manner. Nor did she fail; for little
Mary Ellen was always happy when the Sabbath
morning came. The interest she took in the
reading of the Scriptures, in explanations given
of the plates in the Bible, and the accuracy with
which she would remember all that was told her,
were truly pleasing. Her kind and affectionate
disposition, her love for all that was pure and
holy, and her readiness to forgive at*d excuse all
that she saw wrong in others, made her beloved
by all who knew her. If she saw children at
play on the Sabbath, or roaming about, she would
notice it, and speak of it as being very wrong, and
it would appear to wound her feelings; yet she
would try to excuse them. "It may be," she
would say, that they do not know that it is the
holy Sabbath day. Perhaps no one has told
them." She could not bear to think of any one
doing wrong intentionally.
Whenever she heard her little associates make
use of any language that she was not quite sure
was right, she would ask her mother if it was
wrong to speak thus; and if wrong, she would
say, Then, I will never speak so, and I shall
be your own dear little girl, and my heavenly
Father will love me." We often ask children
whom they love best. Such was the question
often put to Mary Ellen. She would always say,
" I love my heavenly Father best, and my dear
father and mother next." Her, first and best
affections were freely given to her Maker, not
from a sense of duty alone did it seem, but from
a heart overflowing with love and gratitude; and
never, at the hour of retiring, would she forget to
kneel and offer up her evening prayer. Thus
Now I will lead you to her dying pillow
Many friends were around her. No one had told
her that she was dying; yet she herself felt con-
scious of it. She wished to have the window
raised, that she might see the ocean and trees
once more. "Oh!" said her mother, bending
over her, "is my dear little girl dying?" "I w nt
to go," said Mary Ellen; "I want my father
and mother to go with me." Will you not stay
with us?" said the stricken father; will you
not stay with us ?" She raised her little hands
and eyes-" Oh no," said she; "I see them
I see them! 't is lighter there; I want to go;
get a coffin and go with me, father. 'T is lighter
there!" She died soon after she ceased speak.
ing. Her pure spirit winged its way to the
blest home where we shall all have more light,
where the mortal shall put on immortality.
She died when flowers were fading; fit season
for one of so gentle and pure a nature to depart.
In the cold, moist earth they laid her
When the forest cast the leaf,
And we wept that one so beautiful
Should have a life so brief.
And yet 't was not unmeet that one,
Like that young friend of ours,
So gentle and so beautiful,
Should perish with the flowers."
But Oh' when that little form was laid in the
gold grave,-when the childless parents returne
to their lonely home, once made so happy by the
smile of their departed child,-Oh! who can ex-
press or describe their anguish! In her they
had all they could ask in a child; she was their
only one. Everything speaks to their heart of
Wer; but her light step and happy voice fall not
upon their ears; to them the flowers that she
loved have a mournful language. The voice of
the wind sighing in the trees has to them a mel-
ancholy tone. The light laugh of little children,
coming in at the open window,-the singing of
birds which she delighted to hear,-but speak to
their hearts of utter loneliness. They feel that
the little form they had nursed with so much
care and tenderness, so often pressed to their
bosoms, is laid beneath the sod. Yet the sweet
consolation which religion affords, cheered and
sustained the afflicted parents in their hours of
deepest sorrow. They would not call their- child
back. They feel that she has reached her heav-
enly hbme. Happy must they have been in
yielding up to its Maker a spirit so pure.
Two years Mary Ellen has been sleeping in
the little graveyard. Since then another little
daughter has been given her parents,-a prom-
ising little bud, that came with the spring flowers,
to bless and cheer the home which was made so
MARY ELLEN. 21
desolate. The best wish I have for the parents,
and all I ask for the child, is, that it may be like
little Mary Ellen. I have an earnest wish, too
that all little children who read this sketch may
be led to love and obey God as much as Mary
THE DEAD CHILD TO ITS
BY MRS. E. R. B. WALDO.
MOTHER, mourn not for me;
No more I need of thee;
Call back the yearning which would follow where
No mortal grief can go;
All thine a'ffetion throw
Around thy living ones; they need thy care.
Let not my name still be
A word ofgrief to thee,
But let it bring a thought of peace and rest;
Shed for me no sad tear,
Remember, mother dear!
That I am with the perfect and the blest.
Yes, let my memory still
With joy thy bosom fill;
For, though thou dost along life's desert roam,
My spirit, like a star,
Bright burning and afar,
Shall guide thee, through the darkness, to thy home
ST REV. N. R. NTE.
EXPECTATION is not desire, nor desire hope.
We may expect misfortune, sickness, poverty,
while from these evils we would fain escape.
Bending over the couches of the sick and suffer-
ing, we may desire their restoration to health,
while the hectic flush and the rapid beating of
the heart assure us that no effort of kindness or
skill can prolong their days upon the earth.
Hope is directed to some future good, and it
implies not only an ardent desire that our future
may be fair and unclouded, but an expectation
that our wishes will, at length, be granted, and
our plans be crowned with large success. Hence
hope animates us to exertion and diligence, and
always imparts pleasure and gladness, while our
fondest wishes cost us anxiety and tears.
There are false and delusive hopes, which bring
us, at last, to shame. There are those who ex-
pect to gain riches by fraud and deceit, in pu.r
suits and traffics on which the laws of truth,
love, and justice, must ever darkly frown. They
forget that wealth, with all its splendor, can only
be deemed a good and desirable gift when sought
as an instrument to advance noble and beneficent
aims,--when we are the almoners of God's
bounty to the lonely children of sorrow and want.
If we seek wealth, let us not forget that pure
hearts gentle affections, lofty purposes, and gen-
erous deeds, can alone secure the peace and bles-
sedness of the spiritual kingdom of God.
There are some who have a strong desire foi
the praise and stations of men, yet are often
careless of the means by which they accomplish
their ends. Remember, my young friends, that
no station, no crown, or honor, will occupy the
attention of a good and noble heart, except it
opens a better opportunity for philanthropic labor,
and is conferred as the free offering of an intelli-
gent and grateful people.
There are many, especially among the young,
who seek present pleasure in foolish and sinful
deeds, vainly believing the wicked may flourish
and receive the blessing of the good. Believe
me, young friend, such hopes are delusive, and
such expectations will suddenly perish. Let
fools laugh and mock at sin, and live as if God
were not; but consider well the path of your feet!
When your weak arm can hold back the globes
which circle in space above us in solemn gran-
deur and beauty forever, then may you hope to
arrest the operation of those laws which preserve
an everlasting connection between obedience and
blessedness, sin and sorrow.
In the spring-season of life, how beautiful are
the visions which Hope spreads out to our ad-
miring view, as we go forth, with gladsome
heart and step, amid the duties of life, its trials
and temptations. It begets manly effort by its
promises of success, and leads us to virtue and
self-denial, in our weakness and sin. When our
heads are bowed to the earth in despondency
and gloom, hope putteth forth her hand, scattereth
afar the clouds, dispelleth our sorrow; and again,
with a firmer step and a more trustful heart, we
go forth on the solemn march of life! It is our
solace and strength in the hours of woe and
grief, when those in whose smile we have re-
joiced pass from our presence and homes to the
valley and shadow of death. And if we weep
that they are not, and can never return,
"Hope, like the rainbow, a creature of light,
Is born, like the rainbow, in tears,"
and we rest in the calm and blest assurance that
we shall ultimately go to them, and with them
dwell forever in a land without sorrow.
It may be said that we scarcely live in the
present. MEsORY, in whose mysterious cells
are treasured the records of the past, carries us
back to our earlier years, and all our pursuits,
and sports, and joys, and griefs, pass rapidly in
review before us; and HOPE leads us onward,
investing future years with charms, and bidding
us strive with brave and manly hearts in the
conflicts and duties that remain. The former
years -sorrowful remembrance may have
been passed in luxury, indolence, or flagrant sin;
the fruits of our industry and skill may have
wasted away; friends, whose love once cast a
golden sunshine on the path of life, may have
proved false and treacherous; our fondest desires,
perchance, have faded, and sorrows may encom-
pass us about;--yet above us the voice of Hope
crieth aloud, "Press on! "-through tears and the
cross must thou win the crown; be patient, trust-
ful, in every duty and grief; "press on," and falter
not; and its words linger like the music of a
remembered dream in our ear, until, at the bor-
ders of the grave, we lay down the burden of our
sinfulness and care, and, through the open gate
of death, pass onward to that world where hope
shall be exchanged for sight, and we, with un-
veiled eye, shall look upon the wondrous ways
ind works of God.
THE YOUNG SOLDIER.
BY RBV. J. G. ADAMS.
A SOLDIER a soldier!
I 'm longing to be;
The name and the life
Of a soldier for me!
I would not be living
At ease and at play:
True honor and glory
I 'd win in my day!
A soldier! a soldier!
In armor arrayed;
My weapons in hand,
Of no contest afraid;
I 'd ever be ready
To strike the first blow,
And to fight my good way
Through the ranks of the foe.
But then, let me tell you,
No blood would I Mhed,
No victory seek o'er
The dying and dead;
A far braver soldier
Than this would I be;
A warrior of Truth,
In the ranks of the free!
28 THE YOUNG SOLDIER.
My helmet Salvation,
Strong Faith my good shield,
The sword of the Spirit
I 'd learn how to wield.
And then against evil
And sin would I fight,
Assured of my triumph,
Because in the right.
A soldier! a soldier!
0, then, let me be!
Young friends, I invite you-
Enlist now with me.
Truth's bands will be mustered--
Love's foes shall give way!
Let's up, and be clad
In our battle array!
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
BY MRS. M LIVERMORE.
NOT many years ago, the beautiful hills and va.-
- ley of New England gave to the wild Indian a
home, and its bright waters and quiet forests fur-
nished him with food. Rude wigwams sto4
where now ascends the hum of the populous city,
and council-fires blazed amid the giant trees
which have since bowed before the axe of the set-
tler. Between that rude age and the refinement
of the present day, many and fearful were the
strifes of the red owner of the land with the in-
vading white man, who, having crossed the wa-
ters of the Atlantic, sought to drive him from his
hitherto undisputed possessions. The recital of
deeds of inhuman cruelty which characterized
that period; the rehearsal of bloody massacres of
ipoffensive women and innocent children, which
those cruel savages delighted in, would even now
curdle the blood with horror, and make one sick
It was in this period of fearful warfare that
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
the events occurred which form the foundation of
the following story.
Not far from the year 1680, a small colony was
planted on the banks of the beautiful Connecticut.
A little company from the sea-side found their
way, through the tangled and pathless woods, to
the meadows that lay sleeping on the banks of
this bright river; and here, after having felled
the mighty trees whose brows had long been kissed
by the pure heavens, they erected their humble
cottages; and began to till the rich alluvial soil.
The colonists were persevering and industrious;
and soon a little village grew up beside the shin-
ing stream, fields of Indian corn waved their
wealth of tasselled heads in the breezes, the
rudely-constructed school-house echoed with the
cheerful hum of the little students, and a rustic
church was dedicated to the God of the Pilgrims.
He who officiated as the spiritual teacher of this
new parish, also instructed the children during
the week. A man he was of no inferior mind, or
neglected education; of fervent, but austere piety,
possessing a bold spirit and a benevolent heart.
His family consisted of a wife and two daughters;
Emma, the elder, was a girl of eight summers,
and Anna, the younger, was about five.
Never were children so frolicsome and mirth-
loving as were Emma and Anna Wilson, the
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
daughters of the minister. Not the grave admo-
nitions of their mother, or the severe reproofs of
their stern father; not their many confinements in
dark and windowless closets, or the memory of
afternoons, when, supperless, they had been sent
to bed while the sun was yet high in the heav-
ens; not the fear of certain punishment, or the
suasion of kindness, could tame their wild natures,
or force them into anything like woman-like so-
briety. Hand in hand, they would wander amid
the aisles of mossy-trunked trees, plucking the
flowers that carpeted the earth; now digging for
ground-nuts, now turning over the leaves for
acorns; sometimes they would watch the nibbling
squirrel as he nimbly sprang from tree to tree, or
overpower, with their boisterous laughter, the
gushing melody of the bobolink; they mocked the
querulous cat-bird and the cawing crow, started
at the swift winging of the shy blackbird, and 6 f
stood still to listen to the sweet song of the clear-
throated thrush; now they bathed their feet in
thl amlets that went singing on their way to
th~nnecticut, and then, throwing up handfuls
of the running water, which fell again upon their
heads, they laughed right merrily at their self-
bapti They were happy as the days were
long; Iut wild as their playfellows, the birds,
the streams, and the squirrels.
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
One beautiful Sabbath morning in July, their
mother dressed them tidily in their best frocks,
and tying on their snow-white sun-bonnets, she
sent them to church nearly an hour before she
started with their father, that they might walk
leiurely, and have opportunity to get rested be.
fore the commencement of services. But it was
not until near the middle of the sermon that the
little rogues made their appearance. With glow-
ing faces, hair that had strayed from its ungrace-
ful confinement to float in golden curls over their
necks and shoulders,--with bonnets, shoes and
stockings tied together and swinging over each arm,
-with dresses rent, ripped, soiled and stained,
and up-gathered aprons filled with berries, blos-
soms, pebbles, fresh-water shells and bright sand,
they stole softly to where their mother was sit-
ting, much to her mortification, and greatly to the
S horror of their pious father.
For this offence, they were forbidden to accom-
pany their parents, on the next Sabbath, to ch~ph,
but were condemned to close confinemen ll
house during the long, bright, summer d Ia
severer punishment than which, could not tave
been inflicted. When the hour of asseril& for '
worship was announced by the old En
that stood in the corner, the curtains w aw
before the windows; two bowls of bread and milk
THE STOLEN CHILDREN. 33
were placed on th dresser for their dinner; a les-
son in the Testament was assigned to Emma,
and one in the Catechism to Anna; a strict in-
junction to remain all day in the house was laid
upon both, and Mr. and Mrs. Wilson departed,
locking the door, and taking the key. The chil-
dren soon wiped away the tears that their hard
fate had gathered in their eyes, and applied them-
selves to their tasks, which were speedily com-
mitted. Then the forenoon wore slowly away;
they dared not get their playthings,-. tl*y were
forbidden to go out doors,--and the only books in
the room were the Bible, Watts' Hymns, and the
Pilgrim's Progress, which lay on the highest
shelf in the room, far beyond their reach. Noon
came at last; the sun shone fully in at the south
window, betokening the dinner hour, and then
their dinner of bread and milk was eaten. What
were they next to do? Sorrowfully they gazed
on the smiling river, the green corn-fields, the
large potato-plats, the grazing cattle, the bloom-
ing fi #er-beds, and the shady walks which led
far into the cool recesses of the forest; and ear-
nestly did they long for liberty to ramble out in
the glorious sunshine. As they were gazing
wistfully thrqgh the window, they saw their
playful little kitten, Fanny, dart like lightning
from her hiding-place in the garden, where she
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
had long lain in ambush, an fasten her sharp
claws in the back of a poor little ground-bird,
which had been hopping from twig to twig, chirp-
ing and twittering very cheerfully. The little bird
fluttered, gasped, and uttered wailing cries, as it
ineffectually labored to free itself from the power
of its captor, until Emma and Anna, unable longer
to witness its distress, sprang out the window,
and, rushing down the garden, liberated the little
prisoner, and with delight saw it fly away to-
wards the woods.
Delighted to find themselves once more in the
open air, the joyful children forgot the prohibi-
tion of their parents, and leaping over the dear
little brook with which they loved to run races,
they filled their aprons with the blue-eyed violets
that grew on its margin. On they bounded, fur-
ther and further, and a few moments more found
them in the dense wood, where not a sunbeam
could reach the ground. But suddenly the leaves
rustled behind them, and the twigs cracked, and
there sprung, from an ambuscade in the thicket,
the tall figure of an Indian, who laid a strong
hand on the arm of each little girl, and, despite
the cries, tears, and entreaties of the poor children,
hurried them deeper into the fort, where they
found a large body of these cruel savages, clad in
moose and deer skins, armed with bows and ar-
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
rows, tomahawks, and muskets. The children
were questioned concerning the village, the occu-
pation of the inhabitants on that day, and the
number of men at home, and they replied correctly
and intelligibly. A consultation was then held
among the Indians, which resulted in a determi-
nation to attack the village; and forthwith, leaving
but one behind to guard the little prisoners, they
made a descent on the quiet settlement, burning
and ravaging buildings on their way to the church.
But they did not find the body of worshippers
unarmed, as they doubtless expected; for, in those
days of peril and savage warfare, men worship-
ped God armed with musket and bayonet, and
the hand that was lifted in prayer to heaven
would often, at the next moment, draw the gleam-
ing sword from its sheath. At the meeting-
house, the savages met with a warm repulse;
and were so surprised and affrighted thatthey
retreated back into the wild woods, after wound-
ing but one or two colonists, among whom was
Mr. Wilson, Emma's and Anna's father.
The Indians commenced, about dark, a journey
to the settlement where they belonged, taking the
stolen children with them; they reached their
destination early on the second day of their travel.
Rough, indeed, seemed the Indian village to the
white children: the houses were only wigwams,
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
made by placing poles obliquely in the ground,
and fastening them at the top, covered on the
outside with bark, and lined on the inside with
mats; some containing but one family, others a
great many. The furniture consisted of mats for
beds, curiously wrought baskets to hold corn, and
strings of wampum which served for ornaments.
Into one of the smallest of these wigwams Em-
ma and Anna were carried, and were given to
the wife of one of the chief warriors, who had but
one child of her own, Winona was her name,
which signifies the first-born,-a bright-eyed,
pleasant, winning little girl of two years of age.
The mother scrutinized them closely, but the
child appeared overjoyed to see them, and wiped
away their tears with her little hand, and, jabber-
ing in her unknown language, seemed begging
them not to cry. This interested the mother,
and she soon looked more kindly upon them, and
set before them food. Bu.t they were too sorrow-
ful to eat, and were glad to be shown a mat, where
they were to sleep. Locked in each others' arms,
cheek pressed to cheek, they lay and wept as if
their hearts were broken.
Let us pray to God," whispered Emma, after
the inmates of the wigwam were reposing in
slumber, and ask Him to bring us again to our
father and mother."
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
So they rose, and knelt in the dark wigwam,
with their arms about one another's necks, and
their tears flowing together, and offered to God
their childish prayer:
Our Father in Heaven, love us poor children;
take care of us; forgive us for doing wrong, and
help us be good; take care of our dear parents;
comfort them, and bring us again to meet them."
Then, more composed, and trusting in the
blessed Father of us all, they fell asleep, and
sweet were their slumbers, though far from their
dear parents and home, for angels watched over
them, and gave to them happy dreams.
A few days' residence among these untutored
red men made Emma and Anna great favorites
among them; their pleasant dispositions, their
good nature, and, above all, their love for the lit,
tie Winona, which was fully reciprocated, endeared
them to the father and mother of the Indian girl.
Though sad at being separated from their pa-
rents, and though they often wept until they could
weep no longer when they thought of home, yet
their hearts, like those of all children, were easily
consoled, and their spirits were so elastic that
they could not long be depressed. Winona loved
them tenderly; at night she slept between them,
and during the day she would never leave them.
She wore garlands of their wreathing, listened to
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
their English songs, stroked their rosy cheeks,
and frolicked with them in the woods, and beside
the running brooks.
Two months passed away; all the Indian wo-
.men in the village were speaking of the love that
had sprung up between the little white girls and
the copper-colored Winona; and many a hard
hand smoothed the golden curls of the little cap-
tives in token of affection. Then Winona was
taken sick; her body glowed with the fever-heat,
her bright eyes became dull, and day and night
,she moaned with pain. With surprising care
and tenderness, Emma and Anna nursed the suf-
fering child,-for to them were her glowing and
burning hands extended for relief, rather than to
her mother. They held her throbbing head,
lulled her to sleep, bathed her hot temples, mois-
tened her parched lips, and soothed her dis-
tresses; but they could not win her from the
power of death-and she died !
Oh, it was a sorrowful thing to them to part
with their little playmate,-to see the damp earth
heaped upon her lovely form, and to feel that she
was forever hidden from their sight! They wept,
and, with the almost frantic mother, laid their faces
on the tiny grave, and moistened it with their
tears. Hither they often came to scatter the
freshest flowers, and to weep for the home they
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
feared they would never again see; and here
they often kneeled in united prayer t? that God,
who bends on prayerful children a loving eye,
and spreads over them a shadowing wing.
The childless Indian woman now loved them
more than ever; but the death of Winona had
opened afresh the fountains of their grief, and
often did she find them weeping so bitterly that
she could not comfort them. She would draw
them to her bosom, and tenderly caress them; but
it all availed not, and when the month of Octo-
ber came, with its sere foliage and fading flowers,
Emma and Anna had grown so thin, and pale,
and feeble, from their wearing home-sickness,
that they stayed all day in the wigwam, going
out only to visit Winona's grave. They drooped
and drooped, and those who saw them said, The
white children will die. and lie down with Wi-
The Indian mother gazed on their pallid faces,
and wept; she loved them, and could not bear to
part with them ; but she saw they would die, and
calling her husband, she bade him convey them
to the home of their father. Many were the
tears she shed at parting with them; and when
they disappeared among the thick trees, she threw
herself, in an agony of grief, upon the mats
w thin the wigwam.
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
It was Sabbath noon when the children arrived
in sight of their father's house; here the Indian
left them, and plunged again into the depths of
the forest. They could gain no admittance into
the house, and they hastened to the meeting-
house, where they hoped to find their parents.
They reached the church; the congregation was
singing; silently, and unobserved, they entered,
and seated themselves at the remotest part of the
building. The singing ceased; there was a mo-
mentary pause, and their father rose before them.
Oh, how he was changed! Pale, very pale, thin
and sad was his dear face; and Emma's and An-
na's hearts smote them, as being the cause of this
change. They leaned forward to catch a glimpse
of their mother, but in her accustomed seat sat a
lady dressed in black, and this, they thought,
could not be her; they little supposed that their
parents mourned for them as for the dead, believ-
ing they should see them no more.
Mr. Wilson took his text from Psalms: It is
good for me that I have been afflicted." With a
tremulous voice, he spoke of their recent afflic-
tions; of the sudden invasion of the colony, the
burning of their dwellings, the wounding of some
of their number, and then his tones became more
deeply tremulous, for he spoke of his children.
The sobs of his sympathizing people filled the
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
house, and the anguish of the father's feelings
became so intense, that he bowed his head upon
the Bible and wept aloud. The hearts of the
children palpitated with emotion; their sobs arose
above all others; and, taking each other by the
hand, the wan, emaciated, badly-dressed little
girls hastened to the pulpit, where stood their
father, with his face bowed upon the leaves of the
Holy Book, and laying their hand upon his pas-
sive arm, they sobbed forth, Father! Father !"
He raised his head, gazed eagerly and wildly up-
on the children, and comprehending at once the
whole scene, the revulsion of feeling that came
over him was so great,- the sorrow for the dead
being instantly changed into joy for the living,-
that he staggered backwards, and would have
fallen but for the timely support of a chair.
The whole house was in instant confusion; in
a moment they were clasped in their mother's
arms, and kisses and tears and blessings were
mingled together upon their white, thin cheeks,
"Let us thank God for the return of our children,"
said the pastor; and all kneeling reverently, he
thanked our merciful heavenly Father, in the
warm and glowing language of a deeply grateful
heart, for restoring to his arms those whom he
had wept as lost to him forever.
Oh, there was joy in that village that night
THE STOLEN CHILDREN.
again and again the children told their interesting
story, and those who listened forgot to chide their
disobedience, or to harshly reprove. Need I tell
you how they were pressed to the bosoms of the
villagers; how tears were shed for their sufferings,
and those of the little lost Winona, whom they
did not forget; how caresses were lavished upon
them, and prayers offered to God, that their lives,
which he had so wonderfully preserved, might
be spent in usefulness and piety? No, I need not,
for you can imagine it all.
The sermon which was so happily interrupted
by the return of the children was the first Mr.
Wilson had attempted to preach since the day
they were stolen; the wounds he that day re-
ceived, and the illness that immediately afterwards
ensued, with his unutterable grief for the loss of
his children, had confined him mostly to his bed
during their absence. On the next Sabbath,
Emma and Anna accompanied their father and
mother once more to church, when Mr. Wilson
preached from these words: Oh, give thanks
unto the Lord, for he is good, and his mercy en-
f j I'st-n
MY GRANDMOTHER'S COT-
BTY EV. J. G. ADAMS.
OF all places in the wide world, my own early
home excepted, none seem tq me more pleasing
in memory than my grandmo ter's cottage. Vely
often did I visit it in my boyhood, and well
acquainted with its appearance within, and with
almost every object around it, did I become. It
stood in a quiet' nook in the midst of the woods,
about five miles from the pleasant seaport where
I was born. The cottage *as not a spacious
one. It had but few rooms in i; ,but it w"s
amply large for my aged grandparents, I remem-
ber. They lived happily there. My grandfa-
ther was somewhat infirm; my grandmother was
a very vigorous person for one of seventy-five;
this was her age at the time of my first recollec-
tion of her. She used to walk from her cottage
to our home; and once I walked with her, but
was exceedingly mortified that I could not endure
the walk so well as she did.
I used to love this cottage home, because it
was so quiet, and in the sumner time so delight-
46 MY GRANDMOTHER'S COTTAGE.
ing to me. I believe I received some of my very
first lessons in the love of nature in this place.
It was a charming summer or winter retreat. If
the sun shone warmly down anywhere, it was
here. If the wind blew kindly anywhere, it was
around the snug cottage, sheltered as it was on
every side by the tall old pines. If the robin's
note came earliest anywhere in the spring-time,
it was from the large spreading apple-tree just
at the foot of the little garden lot. How often
has my young heart been delighted with his
song there! And then, what sweet chanting I
have heard in those woods all the day from the
thrush and sparrow, yellow-bid and oriole!
How their mellow voices would seem to echo
in the noon-silence, or at the sunset hour, as
though they were singing anthems ir some vast
cathedral! .They were; and what anthems ol
nature's harmony and praise! God heard them,
and was glorified.
It seemed to me4hat every animate thing was
made to be happy. I loved to stand beneath a
tall old hemlock in a certain part of the wood,
and watch the squirrels as they skipped and ran
so swiftly along the wall, or from branch to
branch, or up and down the trees. Their chat-
tering made a fine accompaniment to the bird-
songs. And here I learned to indulge a fondness
MY GRANDMOTHER'S COTTAGE.
for the very crows, which to this day I have nevel
outgrown. Though they have been denounced
as mischievous, and bounties have been set upon
them, I never could find it in my heart to indulge
in the warring propensity against them. They
always seemed to me such social company-
issuing from some edge of the woodland, and
slowly flapping their black wings, and flocking
out into the clearing, huddling overhead, and
sailing away, chatting so loudly and heartily al
the while, and reminding the whole neighbor-
hood that when we have life, it is best to let
others know it! Yes-the cawing crows have
been company for meinw m anny a solitary ramble;
and whenever I -ie them; rin~ rdly pay my
respects to thiAt. Alrtheseapd other familiar
sights and sounds, did I rich] at the old
cottage in the woods. e .
I loved to sit at tkeebedpor,,i V~atch my
grandfather at his slowwofli; fos he iad been
a mechanic in his day, and was dble to do a
little very moderately at his trade now. He
would tell me the history of the old people in the
neighborhood, and of the customs and fashions
when they wqre boys and girls; and my eyes
and ears werd open to hear him. I used to wish
I could see them just as they looked when they
were children. It was very difficult then for me
48 MY GRANDMOTHER'S COTTAGE.
to i nagine how those who had become so wrin-
kled could ever have had the smooth faces of
infants and children. But my grandfather could
remember when he was a boy; and his father
had told hirn what things were done when he, too,
vas a boy. And so I concluded that wrinkles
were no disgrace, nor the fairest faces of the
young any protection against them.
My grandmother was very fond of me, and
took great pleasure in having me read to her, as
her eyesight had become somewhat dim. And
so I used to load myself with story-books and
newspapers, when I became older, to carry and
read to her. And such times as we had with
them! Voyages, travels, discoveries, adventures,
perils,--the wonders of the word, the wonders of
science, thpe r of history,-- all came in for
their share of reai. Though I should read my-
self tired and sleepy, my grandmother would still
be an interested listener. Since I have been a
minister, I have often wished that many hearers
would as eagerly listen to what I had to say
especially to them, as did my aged grandmother
to my young words then.
Those sunny days have departed. The old
cottage is not there now. Years ago it was
taken down. My grandfather died when 1 was
yet a boy, and I followed him to the grave with
MY GRANDMOTHER'S COTTAGE.
a Loavy heart. My grandmother lived to be
almost a hundred years old,-her powers all
gone, and she helpless. It would sometimes,
even in my manhood, deeply affect me to have
her look into my face with no sign in hers that
she knew me, when she had once lovedAre-
talkative and delighted grandchild so fondly.
But she, too, found her resting-place at last be-
side her companion. Peace to them! They
blest me with their kindly, cheering words when
most I needed them, and I will bless their mem-
ories. And peace to the spot where once stood
their quiet home! Wherever in life I may be,-
however brightly its pleasures may shine, or
heavily its cares and afflictions press upon me
-never would I outgrow the inspiration of these
early enjoyments; never forget, that, however
the great, proud, and contentious world may die-
tract and dishearten, there will yet be peace to
the humble and virtuous soul in many a nook
like that which sheltered and bl st my grand
THE FIRST OATH
BY REV. EDEN FRANCIS.
IT is now many years since a near friend of
iune uttered his first oath. We were very inti-
:iate in our youthful days. I have thought that
I would d write a little story about him, for some
*t !he little folks Of these times to read, hoping
that it will not only be interesting, but do them
good; for I am indeed sorry to know that swear-
ing is a very common sin among the boys of our
times. an .
the parents of my young yellow we've o
the humbler class in society; they were indus-
,rious and prudent, and took *great pains to teadh
hinm what was right. They lived in the .inetrop-
tlls of New England, where my :choolmate was
b~t. His father wrought with the saw, the
plane, the hammer, and such tWd as carpenters
use about their business. His home was a neat,
wooden two-story house, in one of the streets of
that part of Boston which was generally known,
when we were boys, by the name of the Mr.L-
POND. I suppose that most of my little readers
who live in the city can tell where it is. Many
THE TIRST OATH.
changes have taken place there since my child,
hood. When I was a small boy it was called the
town,-now we never hear of it but as the city
of Boston. Its population has increased rapidly,
its territory has been extended.; it has grown ia
wealth, in splendor, in its means for mental and
moral improvement; in the number and conven-
ience of its public schools,-the pride and orna-
ment, or the disgrace, of any place. Yes, Boston
is not, in appearance or in fact, what it onoe was.
But I am getting -off from my story. I was
saying that my young friend resided on the
" new-land "-no; the Mill-Pond ;"--well, it's
all the same--for when they dug down old
Beacon Hill, they threw the dirt into the Mill-
Pond, and when it was filled up, or made land,
the spot was still known as the Mill-Pond, and
oftentimes was called the new-land. In later
years, there have been other portions added to
the city, by making wharves, and filling up where
the tide used to ebb and flow, and where large
vessels could float.
But again I am digressing too far from the story.
So soon as my friend was old enough, he was
sent. to one of the primary schools, and was a
pretty constant scholar at that, and afterwards at
a grammar school, till he was about twelve yearn
ld. He was, of course, m ch with other. ad
STR THE l ST OATH.
of his own age, and some who were older and
younger than himself. He was, also, often in the
streets, and as there were a great many people
who used profane language in those days,-as
there are at the present time,--he heard much
of it; yet he had been so carefully trained that
he did not for years utter wicked words.
It is always painful to most persons, old as
well as young, to hear profanity, even though it
be very common in their hearing, if they are
never accustomed to its use.
My young friend had been taught to reverence
the name of that great Being who made heaven
and earth and all things. He was a member of
a Sabbath school, and thus had much valuable
advice from his faithful teacher to govern his
conduct in word and deed. For a while he
heeded this, and was careful of his moral char-
acter. But by-and-by, he overstepped the bounds
It is very true that "evil communications cor-
rupt good manners;" and that if one would not
be bad, one means of safety is to keep out of bi.d
My friend was, in a few years, placed in a
store, where there was a large business carried
oei. He came in contact with persons who were
not ao carefully instru ted as he had been. They
THE FIRST OATH.
made no hesitation in pronouncing the names of
God and Jesus Christ in a blasphemous and pro-
fane manner. He resisted the pernicious influ-
ence of their example for a while, but at last it
became so familiar to his ears, that he could hear
wicked words spoken without even a thrill of
horror in his bosom.
He, however, had not the disposition to speak
them, till one day, when some little thing in the
store did not suit him, his passion was aroused,
and, in the angry excitement of the moment, he
spoke out,-and in that unguarded expression
there was profanity,-a miserable, blasphemous,
wicked word. He had uttered his first oath.
The disposition had been lurking in his heart
for several days to do this; but he had not been
able to so far lower his moral sense as to do it
before. Now he felt as though he had done a
brave act,-that he had achieved something very
grand. But soon, very soon, conscience whis-
pered her gentle yet severe rebuke. She com-
plained sadly of the wickedness that was done.
The blush of shame mantled his cheek. Remorse
took hold on his spirit. He looked about to see
who was upbraiding him; but none seemed to
notice it. He resolved that he would not again
give occasion for such feelings of regret and sor-
row to himself as he then felt.
THE FIRST OATH,
Could you have then looked into his heart,
you would have pitied him. This resolution he
kept a few weeks, when, being a little irritated,
he a second time profaned the holy name of
Deity. This time he felt some compunctions of
conscience, but they were not as powerful as
before; the first step had been already taken,
and a second was much easier.
I need not go on to tell you how he, not long
after, broke a second resolution, and so on, till,
ere many months, he had become really a swear-
ing young man.
It all sprang from the first sinful act; and
when at last he did break himself of the habit,
it was not done without a serious struggle.
I have told you this story, my young readers,
because I thought it might be, not only interest-
ing to you, but because I hoped it might be the
means of leading you to reflect upon the useless-
ness and wickedness of PROFANITY; and that it
might aid in impressing on your minds the im-
portance of governing yotr passions and keep-
ing your tongues free from evil speaking.
I see my friend, about whom I have written,
quite often. He is now a parent, and occupies
an eminent position in the community; but he
often thinks of his former life, and says he has
not yet ceased to lament his FIRST OATH. Let
THE FIRb OATH. 66
.this fact, then, teach you how a recollection of
the sins of boyhood, even though you may call
them little sins,, will be cherihed through life,
and poison many moments that would otherwise
be happy ones. How important tat childhood be
pure and righteous in the eighteGof and to our
own consciences, in order to ihsure a happy
manhood and old age ,
THE FAIRY'S GIFT.
Yr BEV. J. WESLET HANSON.
IT was a quiet summer's day,
The breeze blew cool and fair,
And blest tea thousand happy things
Of land, aid sea, and air,
And played a thousand merry pranks
With MAur's golden hair.
MARY was not a happy girl;
Her face was sad and sour,
And on her little pretty brow
Dark frowns did often lower, -
And she would scold, and fret, and cry,
Full fifty times an hour.
She sat and wept with grief and pain,
And did not smile at all,-
And when her friends and mates came near
She shunned them, great and small,--
And then upon the Fairy Queen
She earnestly did call.
"Oh, hither, hither, good Fairy,
I pray thee come to me!
And point me out the Path of Peace,
That I may happy be,
For I cannot, in all the world,
A moment's pleasure see!
THE FAIRY'S GIFT.
" I try my work, my play I try,
My little playmates, too;
Help me to find true happiness,
I sadly, humbly sue;-
Oh! my lot is a darksome one,-
Fairy what shall I do?"
A humble-bee comes riding by,
No bigger than my thumb,
And on his browny, gold-striped back,
Behold the Fairy come!
One look upon her loveliness
Makes little MARY dumb.
She wore a veil of gossamer,
Her tunic was of blue,
A golden sunbeam was her belt,
And bonnet of crimson hue,
And through the net of her purple shawl
Clear silver stars looked through.
Her slippers were of sunflower seeds,
And tied with spider's thread,
A rein of silkworm's finest yarn
Passed round the bee's brown head;
A, oaten straw was her riding whip,-
Oh how her courser sped!
Ske beckoned to the sighing maid,
And led her a little way,
And showed a hundred fountains bright
That bubbled night and day,
And flashed their waves in the glad sunlight,
And showers of crystal spray.
THE FAIRY'S GIFI.
She said: Each stream has secret power
Upon the human heart,
And, as you drink, the mystic draught
Shall joy or woe impart;
'T will give you pleasant happiness,
Or sorrow's painful smart."
The founts were labelled every one,
With titles plainly seen, -
The fountains Pride, and Sin, and Wrong,
And Hate, and corn, and Spleen,
Goodness, and Love, and many more,
Sparkled along the green.
And MARY drank at each bright fount,
To draw her grief away;
But, spite of all the water's power,
Her sorrows they would stay.
And still she mourned, and still was sad,
Through all the livelong day.
One mor she saw a little spring
She never saw before,
Down in a still and shady vale,
Covered with blossoms o'er, -
And when she 'd drunk, and still would drinb
She thirsted still for more.
She gladly quaffed its cooling draught
And found what she had sought;
WN more her heart with sorrow grieved.
She thirsted now for nought;
THE PA1~!'S GIFT.
She 'd found a blessed happiness,
Beyond her highest thought.
And when she moved the vines aside
That hid the fount from sight,
In loveliest, brightest characters,
Like stars of silver light, -
Goodness of heart, and speech, and life,
She read in letters bright.
And MARY drank the liquid waves,
And soon her little brow
Became as pure, and clear, and white,
As bank of whitest snow;
And when she drank of that blest fount,
She purest joy did know.
Then MARY learned this highest tmrt
Beyond all human art,-
That there are many things in life
Can pain and woe impart; -
But Goodness alone of act and deed
Can make a happy heart.
A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
BY MISS LOUISA M. BARKER.
WHEN I was a little child, younger than those
for whom this book is written, my home was in
a valley. The usual appendages to a farm-house,
the garden, orchard and small pasture grounds,
lay very near it; and I was as familiar with these
enclosures as with the rooms of the house. A
little further off there was a mimic river, which,
as it wound about, divided itself into different
streams, and surrounded little islands, shaded with
the tall plane tree and the flexible willow. Here,
too, with those who were old enough to be care-
ful in crossing the rustic bridges, I sometimes
played on summer afternoons; -gathered the
prettiest flowers in the sweetest little woods, and
dipped my feet into the clear running water.
Beyond these there lay less frequented fields,
which rose gradually, at no very great distance,
:nto a range of hills as green as the valley below.
One of them was covered all over its summit,
and a little way down its sides, with some dark old
woods. The trees which grew there were very
tall, and so large that their thick and heavy top@
A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
seemed to crowd together, so that you ipight have
walked on them almost as well as upon the hill
itself. I loved sometimes, when the air was full
of the bright sunshine, to look at the rich shades
of green upon those tree-tops; but if ever my eye
rested, for a moment only, upon the dark and
mysterious avenues which led into the depths of
the wood beneath them, there would creep such
a chill to my heart,-such a feeling of dread would
come over me, -that I turned quickly to the glad-
looking homestead, that I might again grow warm
At first it was probably no more than the idea
that those woods formed a limit to the world of
light and gladness in which I lived. My eye
could not penetrate their dimness, and with a
childish, human feeling I shrank from the undis-
covered and unknown. But as I grew older, and
read the stories in the small books which were
given to me for presents, or lent by my little
friends, I had other and plainer reasons for the
apprehensive feeling with which I looked at the
woods. I found that children had been so lost
among their thickets as hardly to be found again;
and that two poor little orphans, left there on pur-
pose, had lain down and died of hunger and wea-
riness; and the birds covered them over with
leaves. Strange birds I thought there were in
62 A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
the woods. Then the fairies that dwelt there
and the strange elfin creatures, and the perils
that travellers fell into with robbers and wild
beasts; and still I referred the scene of every story
I read directly to those very woods upon the hill-
side, although they were so near that I could
see them plainly enough from the windows of
the cheerful rooms at home.
Time passed along in its usual way; but before
I had acquired knowledge or strength of mind
enough to correct my early impressions of the
woods, I had permission, one bright afternoon in
June, to go with an older sister to a strawberry
meadow across the creek. We were accompa-
nied by some little maidens, who were older and
more adventurous than me; and so it happened
that when we did not find the fruit so abundant
as we could wish, they persuaded us to go into
another field, and then into another, I little thought
where, until I became suddenly sensible of a
shaded light around me, of a breeze a little cooler
than that which tempered the warm air of the
valley, and a low, wild music that I had never
heard before; and looking up, I saw that we were
actually upon the ascent of the hill which led up
to the dreaded woods.
Strange and almost horror-struck as I felt,:I
did not scream out, (perhaps I should not have
A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
thad breath to do so,) but I gathered up all he
wisdom that my little heart could boast, into the
resolution not to look at the woods, not to think
of them; for we should soon go back again, I
thought, and nothing would happen. And my
young friends can judge how terrified I must have
:grown, when I heard one of the girls begin to
sltk of the beautiful flowers her brother had
,brought her from the woods, and end by propos-
ing that we should go there, and get some for
-ourselves. I waited breathlessly to hear the ob-
jections which I doubted not would be urged
-against this plan, but none were offered; and
when I ventured to remonstrate, they paid so lit-
tle attention to me, that my pride was hurt at the
thought of saying any more.
There was another way in which my pride was
at work. I was ashamed, among those who were
,So brave, to own that I was afraid; so, though I
held the hands of those who led me pretty tight,
-and gave them some little trouble to pull me
-along, they knew nothing more of my reluctance
Ao go with them.
We got up the hill very fast; so at least it
seemed to me. Here and there a solitary tree,:a
few feet in advance, looked as if it had stepped
-out to welcome and encourage us to pass on.; and
.1,cannot say that my strength did not revive a it-
64 A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
tie as I passed under the heavy branches, and out
again into the freer air. Be that as it may, it was
terrible enough to me, the approach to those
woods. My companions were eager and gay,
and shouted out, as we entered them. They lit-
tle thought how overpowering were my feelings.
And I little thought, myself, that I was then and
there to receive a lesson that I should never for-
get; one, perhaps, that would do me more good
than any other that I should ever learn.
At first, I was so frightened that my senses
were all in confusion; but as I gradually recov-
ered the use of them, I took notice of the cool-
ness and the shade, and the dimness away in the
distance; I heard the leafy murmur above my
head, the sweet notes that the birds were singing,
and the loud echoes. All these things seemed
to blend together into something so solemn and
so magnificent, that I began to feel for the first
time what it was to be a little child. With that,
soon came a feeling of confidence and even love.
I thought that the majestic presence that filled
the woods, whatever it was, would not hurt me,
and my heart grew so light at the thought, that
I began to gather flowers with the rest. How
pretty they were and what clean, shining leaves!
And here and there, wherever a little sunshine
found an opening in the branches and streamed
A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATUtL
down upon the bright green moss, it seemed se
golden, so clear, and so real, just as if I might
clasp it in my hands!
I grew so much affected, at length, that I sob-
bed myself into tears, and my sister said that I
had never been in the woods before, and she
would take me home. I did not like to say that
I wanted to stay longer, but held to my flowers;
and after I reached home, was washed and rested,
I went to the window, and remained there a long
time, looking at the woods. I did not quite com-
prehend all I had thought and felt, but it seemed
to me that a great truth, one that would do me
good, had dawned upon my mind.
It was a long time before I fully understood the
lesson. In a few weeks I caught one of those
contagious diseases which children must have
once; and it went so hard with me, that, before I
was able to walk about, and go out of the house,
the leaves were all gone, and the snow had cov-
ered the ground. When spring returned I thought
often of the woods, but I was too sickly to go
there; and when I grew strong again, my thoughts
were all occupied with an approaching event.
Several changes had occurred in the family, and
others were expected, to which my friends though
discontented at first, had grown quite reconciled
It was not so with me. There was one circum-
66 A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
stance which affected me more than it did others,
and from that I prophesied a continual succession
of evils. It seemed to me that my life was to be
wholly changed, and all the joy and beauty left.
behind. It was childish, I know. I knew it then,
for I would not for the world have told any one
how I felt. Still I was as much affected by it as
I have ever been since at any real grief.
Late one afternoon, when my thoughts were
busy with my fears, I went to the window, and
looked up at the woods. The sunshine was very
bright on their tops, and the shadow very dark on
the hill-side below. Very vividly then came back
to me the memory of my visit to them the year
before. I thought of the evils which 1 expected to
meet, and of the beauty which I found there. It
*as some good angel which whispered then in my
thoughts, that, just as I went to the woods, full
of fears and forebodings, I was approaching the
expected misfortune; that I might be as happily
disappointed in this as I had been in that.
I cannot tell how delighted I was with this
suggestion, nor how completely it took possession
of my mind. I was gloomy and fearful no longer.
I did not, indeed, when the change came, resign
what I lost by it without regret; but I was so cer-
tain of finding new enjoyments, that I resigned it
cheerfully. And when, after a few weeks' expe-
A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
rience had taught me that many advantages and
many pleasures had come to me in consequence
of those very circumstances which I had dreaded
so much, I bound the lesson of the woods to my
heart so firmly that there it still remains.
And let me say to you, for whom I have re-
lated this little incident of my childhood:-do
not tremble at the disappointments and trials which
await you. Do not seek to throw upon others
any part of them which you may more becom-
ingly bear yourself. If you live always in the
open sunshine, you will never know what beauty
there is in the woods. You will find the senti-
ment in your books, that it is the night-time
only that shows us the stars; and in the gloom
which must sometimes fall upon this uncertain
and mortal life of ours, you may find, if you will,
as much to rejoice in as to dread. You will form
plans, and indulge in hopes, which cannot be
realized, and disappointment will look frowningly
upon you; but if you will submit yourself to the
trial like a little child, the hand that will lead you
through it will point you to happier scenes than
those of your own imagining.
You will have friends to love, that death may
take away from you-and, oh! then, the shadow
of the woodland, as it lies against the sunny
meadow, will be less dark than your life But
S A LESSON TAUGHT BY NATURE.
do not despair. The few rays of light that reach
you will be richer, the flowers will be purer, and
the music will be softer and sweeter; for you will
be nearer heaven than you were before.
There is another shadow which you and I, and
all of us, are approaching,-" the shadow of
death." But will not the lesson" brighten our
approach even to that? Certain I am, that if
that hour of my childhood, when, with a fearful
heart, I went into the solemn woods, and heard
the sweet singing of the bird and the breeze, shall
be remembered then, even though the light of life
be fading away, "I shall fear no evil."
"I WILL not go to Sabbath school to-morrow,"
said Florence Drew, as she threw aside her cat-
echism and sat herself sullenly by the window.
"Florence!" said her mother; "I am aston-
ished to hear you speak so rashly."
I don't care, I will not go, my lesson is
so hard I can't get it;" saying which, she burst
into tears. Mrs. Drew cast a look of sorrow upon
her only child as she left her to regain her god
No sooner had the door closed after her
mother than the rustling of leaves beneath the
window drew the attention of Florence. Think-
ing it her favorite Carlo, and being in no mood
for a frolic, without lifting her eyes she bid him
"begone;" but she was soon undeceived by a
shrill voice pronouncing her name, at the same
time finding her arm tightly grasped by the thin,
bony fingers of Crazy Nell, the terror of all the
truant children in the village. The terrified child
vainly tried to disengage herself from the ma-
niac's hold; and, finding her calls for help all
unheeded, she gave up in despair.
The wild, searching eyes of Crazy Nell de-
tected her terror, and her stern features relaxed
into a smile as she said, Poor child! I will not
harm you; you fear me, and think me mad;
yes, I have been mad, but I 'm not now; and I
have come to save you from being as I have
been. Nay, Florence, 't is useless for you to try
to escape me; I will detain you but a short time.
1 heard your angry words as I was gathering
herbs, and saw you fling your book away. I
heard all. Listen to me, Florence Drew, and I
will tell you a story by which I hope you will
I was once young, gay, and happy, as you,
and, like you, an only and indulged, but wilful
child, with a quick and ungovernAl temper.
One day, I was studying my Sabbath school
lesson, and finding it, as I thought, rather hard,
I threw it away, as you did yours, saying that I
would not go to school at all. My poor mother's
entreaties were all unheeded by me, and I grew
up in idleness and ignorance. My mother's health
daily declined, partly through my ill-treatment
and wickedness. Often did she plead with me,
with tears streaming down her cheeks, to alter
my conduct; but I rudely repulsed her."
Nell paused, and seemed very much agitated;
her eyes glared wildly, and bending close to
Florence, she continued in a whisper: "We
became very poor, in consequence of my extrava-
gance; I then thought my mother a burden;
she was too ill to work, and I left her to starve;
she did not, however; she died of a broken heart.
I was her murderer! 'T was that which drove
me mad. Look! see you not that black cloud
which darkens the sunshine of my life ?"
I cannot see a cloud," sobbed poor Florence,
who was now tasting the bitter cup of repentance.
I know it, poor child!" continued Nell; the
cloud I mean is such as you just felt,- TEMPER.
It is within us! Conquer your temper, Florence
Drew, and you may yet be good and happy.
Go, now, and seek mother, who is at this moment
shedding tears of sorrow for her little girl's ill-
temper. Go to her and-" But, ere she could
finish, Florence had glided into her mother's
room, and was kneeling humbly at her feet
Tears of sorrow were changed to those of joy
and repentance, as Mrs. Drew folded her little
girl to her breast in a long and affectionate em-
Florence has never been unkind to her mother,
or given freedom to her temper, since that day.
She is now the teacher of a class in a Sabbath
school, and she often relates to her little scholars
the story I have just related to you.
72 FLORENCE DREW.
Crazy Nell continues to gather herbs, an object
of pity to the benevolent, and of sport to the
unfeeling. And now, my dear little readers, I
must repeat Crazy Nell's expression: "Conquer
your temper, and you will be happy;" or, in the
words of the sacred Scriptures, "He that ruleth
his own spirit is greater than he that taketh a
BY REV. J. ADAMS.
IN the ,?ture opposite, the reader will see rep-
resented a part of the city of Shechem, at the
foot of Mount Gerizim. It is a very noted place
in history. It is called Sychar in the Gospel,
John 4: 5. It was here, at Jacob's well, that
Jesus met the woman of Samaria. The account
of the conversation which they held together is
one of the most interesting records in the New
Testament. I wish all our young readers would
make themselves acquainted with it. Jesus was
a Jew; and the Jews had no dealings with the
Samaritans. Weary with travelling in the heat of
the day, our Lord sat down to rest by that an-
cient well, when the stranger woman came to
draw water from it. Jesus said unto her, "Give
me to drink." She was surprised that he, being
a Jew, should ask water of her, a Samaritan.
This very surprise which she expressed led to a
most instructive conversation. Read it, and see
how plainly Jesus teaches us the nature of true
worship. The Jews had their temple at Jerusa*
,em; the Samaritans had theirs on Mount Ger-
izim. The woman said to Jesus, Our fathers
worshipped in this mountain, and ye say that Je-
susalem is the place where men ought to worship."
She would ask which was the true place. Jesus
declared to her that it was not so much the place,
as it was the heart, which made worship what it
should be. Read the answer of Jesus as the New
Testament gives it, and then see if the Quaker
poet, Barton, has not beautifully expressed it
"Woman, believe me, the hour is near
When He, if ye rightly would hail him,
Will neither be worshipped exclusively here,
Nor yet at the altar of Salem.
For God is a spirit, and they, who aright
Would perform the pure worship he loveth,
In the heart's holy temple will seek with delight
That spirit the Father approveth."
Through the knowledge of Christ obtained by
the Samaritan woman in this conversation, many
of her sect were induced to believe on him,
Shechem, or Sichem, is a very ancient place;
though we do not find it mentioned as a city until
the time ot Jacob, who purchased a piece of land,
and dug the well of which we have just spoken,
The city lay between the two mountains EbEl
nd Gerizim. It was made a city of refuge,
Joshua 20: 7. 21. 20, 21. Quite a number of
events mentioned in the Old Testament occurred
here. It was at Shechem Joshua met the as-
sembled people for the last time. It was here
that Rehoboam was made king, and the ten tribes
In after time Shechem became the chief seat
of the people who thenceforth bore the name of
Samarit&ns. They were made up in part of em-
igrants from other eastern nations. When the
Jews returned from their long captivity in Baby-
lon, and began to rebuild Jerusalem and their
temple, the Samaritans desired to aid them in
their work. "Let us build with you," was their
request. The Jews refused to admit them to this
privilege; hence a strong hatred between the two
sects arose. The Samaritans erected their tem-
ple on Mount Gerizim.
Shechem received the new name of Neapolis
from the Greeks-a name which it retains to the
present day. The city has passed through many
changes, which, had we time to recount them,
might be of deep interest to the reader. But it
would take a larger space to do this than we can
now occupy. The Samaritans are still here; but
their number now is small, not exceeding one
hundred and fifty. They have a synagogue,
where they preserve several ancient copies of the
books of Moses, and among them one ancient
manuscript which they believe to be three thou-
sand four hundred and sixty-five years old, say-
ing it was written by Abishua, the son of Phinehas
(1 Chron. 6: 3, 4.) The manuscript, so travel-
lers who have seen it say, is very ancient; but
they do not all think it so old as the Samaritans
pretend it is.
Mount Gerizim is still held in great venera-
tion by the Samaritans. Four times a year they
ascend it in solemn procession, to worship. The
old feeling of hostility between them and the Jews
is still existing.
The city of Neapolis, or, as the Arabs call it,
Nablous, is long and narrow, stretching close
along the northeast base of Mount Gerizim.
The population is about eight thousand souls,.all
Mohammedans, with the exception of about five
hundred Greek Christians, and the one hundred
and fifty Samaritans already mentioned. Those
who have taken part in its eventful past history
are gone. But never shall be heard there a more
glorious voice than that which uttered those su-
blime words of heavenly truth to the woman at
"ARE WE NOT ALL BROTH-
ERS AND SISTERS?"
BY REV. W. RG. XELLEN.
THAT the human race is one, bound together
by the strongest and holiest ties, is one of the
sublimest truths announced by the Master.
Indeed, so close and intimate is the connection
subsisting between the various members of the
common family, that to tear one from the body
would be like following the direction of Solomon
to his servant, and dividing the living child in
two, leaving life's purple current to spout forth
from either half. An appreciation of this truth
is what the world, heart-sick and weary as it is,
now needs above all things else. And to illus-
trate and enforce the fact that it is not a vain
shadow, but a solid reality, too solemn to be
trifled with, and too important to be neglected,-
to illustrate this by deeds which bear joy to the
joyless and hope to the hopeless,-is the work
which Christians, the young as well as old, are
now called to perform. Will it need the voice
of duty, which speaketh as from the skies ? This
is the great truth, also, which, with all its rela-
82 ARE WE NOT ALL BROTHERS AND SISTERS
tions to life and duty, is to be impressed by the
present, upon the minds of the rising, generation.
This is what my young readers are to learn,-
and not simply to learn, but to practise:-that
we are all brothers and sisters, no matter in
what clime or country we may have been born,
or with what complexion we may be clothed.
A little girl, some five years of age, whom the
writer of this has often fondled in his arms, had
well learned this most important lesson. By
pious parents and earnest Sabbath school teachers
had she been taught, that to be like Jesus, who
took little children in his arms and blessed them,
she must love and do good unto all, as brothers
and sisters. This had sunk deep into her young
and tender mind ; and when, on a visit at the
house of a friend, she was asked that familiar
question, which is so often put to children,-
whom she loved,-
After a moment's hesitation she replied, that
she loved everybody. Indeed!" said the querist;
how can that be ? You certainly do not love
me as well as you do your own brothers and
sisters; do you ?"
After another short pause she replied, "Yes,
I think I do; for you, too, are my sister." "I
your sister ?" said the lady, in surprise; "how
can that be possible?" Looking up with a
ARE WE NOT ALL BROTHERS AND SISTERS? 83
countenance in which all heaven's innocence and
purity were mirrored, she exclaimed, Is not
God our Father ? and are we not all brothers and
sisters ? and should we not love each other as
such ? "
There was no further argument to be used.
Though hid from many wise and prudent, yet
the truth was thus revealed to babes.
Yes, we are all brethren and sisters, having a
common origin, a common destination, and a
common home. And may all those children who
read this short article ever recollect this impor-
tant truth. When you behold a poor, unfortu-
nate man, with torn and filthy garments, and
perhaps intoxicated, reeling through the streets,
do not hoot after, and throw stones at him, as I
have known many boys do, but think within
yourselves, "He is our brother."
When one of your number abuses the rest, and
you are tempted to injure and beat him, wait tiL
you have said to yourselves, "He is still our
brother; and though he has done us wrong, why
should we strike or injure him?"
When you see a companion in trouble, and
one to whom your assistance can do much good,
recollect he is a brother, or she is a sister, and
fly to help him. And oh if all, both old and
young, would act upon this principle, how difler-
84 ARE WE NOT ALL BROTHERS AND SISTERS?
ent would be the aspect of affairs from what it
now is! Then the kingdom of God would dawn
upon us. Then the wolf and the lamb would lie
down together, and the lion eat straw like an ox.
Then we should be like little children, and the
blessing-smile of Jehovah would shed upon us
hio choicest benediction.
A DIALOGUE FOR EXHIBITIONS.
BY JULIU A. FLETCHER.
Sophronia. Come, girls, let us go and have
our fortunes told.
Eveline. Oh! I should like it of all things;
where shall we go?
Sarah. Let us go to old Kate Merrill's. They
say she can read the future as we do the past,
by hand, tea-cups, or cards. Come, Mary Ann.
Mary Ann. Excuse me, girls, if I do not go
with you. I do not think it is right to have ar
Sophronia. Not right? why not?
Mary Ann. Because, if it had been best for
us to know *e future, I think God would have
revealed it to us.
Sarah. Oh, but you know this is only for
Eveline. Of course, we shall not believe a
word she says.
Mary Ann. If it is only for amusement, I
think we can find others far more rational and
innocent. But depend upon it, girls; you would
not wish to go, if there were not in your minds
a little of credulous feeling ?
Sophronia. Well, I am sure I am not credu-
Mary Ann. Do not be offended, Sophronia;
I only meant that we are all of us more inclined
to believe these things than we at first imagine.
Sarah. I think that Mary Ann is right in
this respect. I am sure I would not go if I did
not think her predictions would come to pass.
Mary Ann. Certainly; I could not suppose
you would spend your time and money to hear
an old woman tell you things you did not
Eveline. Well, I am sure I do not see any
harm in having a little fun once in a while.
Sophronia. No; and I think it is very unkind
in Mary Ann to spoil all our pleasures with her
wLims. She is always preaching to us about
gi /ing up our own way for the comfort of others,
arnd I think she ought to give up now, and go
Sarah. Now, really, Sophronia, I think you
are the one that is unkind. If Mary Ann is
wrong, it is better to convince her of it kindly,
and I am sure she will acknowledge it.
Mary Ann. I hope I should be willing to
: 'e up a mere whim for the pleasure of those I
love so well. But this is not a whim; it is a
serious conviction of duty.
Sophronia. Well, I thought you always pre-
tended to be very obliging.
Mary Ann. I have no right to be obliging at
the expense of what I deem duty. Our own
inclinations we should often sacrifice, our preju-
dices always, but our sense of duty never.
Eveline. I think, girls, we have done wrong
to urge Mary Ann to go, after she had told us
Sophronia. Well, then, don't spend any more
time in urging her to go, against her will. You
know the old proverb The least said is soonest
Eveline. Well, do not let us go away angry
or ill-natured. You asked Mary Ann to say
why she thought it was wrong, and we should
receive her reasons kindly.
Sarah. So I think; but I wish she would tell
us what harm she thinks it would do to go.
Mary Ann. Well, girls, I think, by trying to
look into the future, we are apt to grow discon-
tented and restless, and to forget that we have
duties to perform in the present. Then, if we do
not believe in it, it is a waste of time and money,
which might be better employed in relieving the
suffering of the poor around us. But the greatest
evil of all is, that we should believe even a part;
she would of course tell us many little circum-
stances which would be true of any one; thus
we might be led to believe all she said; the pre-
diction would probably work out its own fulfil-
ment, and perhaps render us miserable for life.
Sophronia. Oh, fudge! Mary Ann. This is
altogether too bad and ungenerous in you. In
the first place, the few cents we give, bestowed
as they are on a poor old widow woman, are
not wasted, in my opinion, but well spent;-- and
if I spend an evening, granted to me by my father
and mother for recreation, in listening to Old
Kate, it is no more wasted than if I spend it with
the girls in any other social way. And when
you connect fortune-telling and our duties in the
present, you make it too serious an affair. Re-
member, this is all for sport.
Mary Ann. It may be so with you, Sophronia;
but there are those who seriously believe every
word of a fortune-teller, and actually live more
in the unseen but expected events of the future,
than in faithfully performing their duties in the
present. This is true, Sophronia. The content-
ment and peace of many young minds have been
utterly lost, sold for the absurd jabbering of old,
ignorant, low-bred women, who pretend to read
the future. [In a livelier tone of voice.] But just
say, girls, do you believe there is any connection
between tea-leaves and your future lives ?
Eveline, Sarah, Sophronia. Why, no!
Mary Ann. Do you believe God has marked
the fortunes of thousands of his creatures on the
face of cards ?
Eveline, Sarah, Sophronia. Certainly not.
Mary Ann. Well, do you believe, if God
should intrust the secret events of the future with
any of our race, in this age, it would be with
those who have neither intellectual, moral, nor
religious education-who can be bribed by
dollars and cents to say anything?
Sarah, Eveline. No, indeed!
Mary Ann. (Turns to Sophronia.) You do
not answer, Sophronia. Let me ask you one or
two more questions. Do you suppose Kate Mer-
rill believes that she has a revelation from God?
Sophronia. No, Mary Ann.
Mary Ann. Do you suppose she thinks you
believe so ?
Sophronia. Why, yes, I do.
Mary Ann. Then, is it benevolent to bestow
money to encourage an old woman in telling for
truth what she knows to be false ?
Sophronia. I doubt whether it is really benev.
Mary Ann. And if Old Kate speaks falsely
and knows she does so, and you know it, yet
spend your time in listening to what she has to
say, what good can come of it to head or heart ?
Sophronia. None at all, Mary Ann. It is
time wasted, and I am convinced that I have
been doubly wrong in wishing to go, and in being
angry with you. Will you forgive me ?
Mary Ann. Certainly, Sophronia. And now,
if you wish for amusement, I will be a witch
myself, and tell your fortunes for you.
Sophronia. Oh, do tell mine; and be sure
you tell it truly. What lines of fate do you see
in my hand ?
Mary Ann. (Takes her hand and looks at it
Passions strong my art doth see.
Thou must rule them, or they rule thee.
If the first, you peace will know;
If the last, woe followeth woe.
Sarah. Now tell mine next.
Too believing, too believing,
Thou hast learned not of deceiving.
Closely scan what seemeth fair,
And of flattering words beware.
Eveline. Now tell me a pleasant fortune,
Lively and loving, I would not chide thee,
Do thou thy duty, and joy shall betide thee.
Sophronia. Thank you, Mary Ann, for the
lessons you have given us. We can now, in
turn, tell your fortune, and that is, Always be
amiable and sensible as now, and you will always
THE BOY WHO STOLE THE
BY REV. MOSES BALLOU.
I REMEMBER well, that, when I was quite a
lttle boy, a circumstance occurred which I shall
probably never forget, and which, no doubt, has
had some little influence on my life at many dif-
ferent periods since. I will relate it; and I wish
all my young readers would remember the story.
My father was somewhat poor. He had no
salary for preaching, except for a few months,
perhaps not five hundred dollars for forty years
of pulpit labor. He maintained his family chiefly
from a small farm, and, there being several chil.
dren, we were deprived of many little things that
wealthier parents are accustomed to furnish for
theirs. We had few presents, and those chiefly
of necessary articles, school-books, or some-
thing of the kind; while toys, playthings, and
instruments of amusement, we were left to go
without, or take up with such rude and simple
ones as we could manufacture for ourselves.
I wanted a small box very much. A handsome
little trunk, such as most of my young readers
THE BOY WHO STOLE THE NAILS.
probably have, was too much to hope for, and a
plain wooden box, even, I had no means to pur-
I went without for a long time, and at last
determined tliat I would try to make one. But
the materials, where was I to obtain them?
True, my father had pieces of thin boards that
would answer, but there were nails, and hinges,
and a lock wanting. Where were these to come
After trying a variety of methods, I invented a
plan for fastening it without a lock, and leather
made a very good substitute for hinges it was
to be out of sight. Still, I wantelfi..,* ere
were some old ones about thIb use, bu y
were crooked, and brokeraAnd rusty. These
would not answer if anytdr~g better could be
My uncle, who at this time lived but a short
distance from us, was engaged in building, and
I watched the barrel of bright new nails his
workmen were using, with a longing eye. 0,
how I coveted them!
The temptation was too great. I sought the
opportunity while the hands were at dinner, and,
after cautiously looking about to see that no one
was near to observe me, with trembling hands
seized upon them, and stole enough to make my
94 THE BOY WHO STOLE THE NAILS.
box. 0! how my heart beat as I hurried away
across the fields home. I almost expected to
see some one start up from every stump and bush
on the way, to accuse me of the theft. I hardly
dared to look behind me. It seemed as though
my old uncle, with frowning brow, was at my
very heels. And then, too, the workmen;-
were they not suspicious from my hanging about
them, and had not some of them watched me ?
So horrid images began to dance about my brain.
Dim visions of court-rooms, and lawyers, and
judges, and prisons, and sorrowing parents, and
frighten brothers and sisters, rose in awful
terrq foti We. I began to grow dizzy and
fainn' I had laid up, for a long time, all the
pennies I could obtain, which, at that time,
amounted to the vast sum of twenty cents, con-
tained in an old-fashioned pistareen; and the
hope sprung up in my heart, that, possibly, by
paying this to the officers, they would not carry
me to jail.
Thought was busy in laying plans for escape,
and I reached home in the greatest excitement
Well, the deed was now done, and I could
not undo it. I was really a thief; and now, as
I had got the nails, I thought I might as well use
them. I was too anxious about the crime, how-
THE BOY WHO STOLE THE NAILS.
ever, to do this at once. So I hid them away
for a week or more, before I ventured to make
Taking such leisure hours as I had,-for I
was obliged to work most of the time on the
farm,-I crept away in the loft of an old build-
ing, and finally succeeded in finishing my task.
But, now that the box was done, my troubles
were by no means ended. It would be seen.
I could not always keep it out of sight. My
brothers, and sisters, and playmates, would ex-
amine it, and possibly my father would get his
eye upon it! Suppose he should, and ask me
where those nails came from? : h
0, how my poor brain was racked to inent
some false story by which I could escape detec-
tion! I thought of saying that they were old
ones which I had polished up so as to appear
new, and I even filed down the rust on the head
of an old nail to see if they would look suf-
ficiently alike. But nothing of this kind would
answer. The cheat, I thought, would be de-
tected; and so I was obliged, after all my trouble
and suffering, to keep my box hidden away when
it was done. Every time I went to look at it,
those bright new nail-heads were staring out at
me, ready to reveal my crime to any one who
96 THE BOY WHO STOLE THE NAILS.
For a long time, I did not dare to go to my
uncle s again. True, he knew nothing of my
wrong; but I felt guilty, and did not care to see
him. Finally, after some time had passed away,
though I had by no means forgotten the theft,
and still suffered much every time it was thought
of, I ventured to call and see him. I could hardly
avoid the impression that he must know what I
had done, and would accuse me of it; and when
he met me in the yard at his door; patted my
cheek with a half-laughing, half-reproving look;
asked why I had stayed away from him so long;
and said, that, to punish me, he should go and
get, fie some very nice apples from the garden;
-I could bear it no longer. It seemed as though
my heart would break. What I said, I have now
forgotten. I remember that I cried very heartily,
and, as soon as my tears would allow it, told him
the whole story!
I can still see, fresh in my memory, the sad
look that came over him as 1 confessed my
crime; but not a single harsh or unkind word did
he utter. He told me that it was very wrong;
that I had acted nobly in confessing it; and that,
if I had only asked him in the first place, he
would gladly have given me all I wanted.
Thinking I had suffered enough already, he
promised not to tell my parents, in case I con-
THE BOY WHO STOLE THE NAILS.
tinued a good boy, and advised me to destroy the
box and bring him back the nails, as no one could
then suspect what had been done but ourselves.
His kindness, I confess, pained me very much.
I think nothing could have tempted me to do him
any wrong again.
I loved him better than ever before. He never
alluded to the subject afterwards, but I always
thought of it when I saw him. He died in a
short time; and, twenty years after, as I stood
by his grave, the circumstance came up, clear
and distinct, to my recollection. I have not,
indeed, from that to the present hour, felt the
least temptation to commit any wrong of the
kind without recalling it; and, if all my young
readers will think seriously how much suffering
that one act cost me, and how much happier I
should otherwise have been, I am confident that
they will never commit a similar offence so long
as they remember the story of the boy who stole
THE CHILDLESS MOTHER.
BY MRS. M. H. ADAMS.
THERE are many childless mothers in our land.
In some homes there never lived a little child to
make them happy; but in others the spirits of the
little ones have departed. They dwell in another
home-the dear heavenly home." Their moth-
ers, those childless mothers, weep day and night
in their loneliness and sadness. This sketch is
of a mother who had buried all her little babes-
four precious children -all her little family. The
mother's name was Ellen Moore.
For many months after the birth of her first
child, Ellen was free from sorrow as a bird in the
morning. She never thought affliction might
come to her blessed home. It was not surprising,
for she had never known what bereavement and
bitter disappointment were. She was educated to
be a child of sunshine. She had always lived
amid smiles and tenderness, and when the fear-
ful cloud of sorrow broke, in an unexpected mo-
ment, upon her head, she seemed bowed down,
never to rise again in health and beauty.
THE CHILDLES. MOTHER
It was a sad day in our neighborhood when
Ellen's first little babe died; we all wept. Not
so much because he was dead, for we all felt that
he was at rest; but his dear mother was so sorely
troubled, her heart ached so grievously, it seemed
as if she too would die. Days and nights Ellen
wept, and moaned, and walked her house. The
tears seemed to burn their way down her cheeks.
She spoke but seldom, yet that pitiful moan she
so often breathed out pierced our souls and made
us all very sad.
After a few weeks, the consolation we offered
her quieted her feelings, and she became calm.
She went to church, called on her friends, and
attended to her duties at home. But there was
ever a sadness in her voice and manners. Her
home was so lonely, so strangely still and vacant,
and Ellen so silent, that the voice of gladness was
not heard in it again until a second beautiful boy
was born under its roof.
We were all happy then. Even Ellen smiled
as she kissed her dear babe-but a tear followed
the smile and the kiss so soon, we knew her
wounded heart was not then healed. She was
very sad, and felt that this babe, too, might only
be loaned her for a short time. It was not long
before we all felt so. That little face, so pale, so
sad, so beautiful, evidently bore the seal of death
THE CHILDLESS MOTHER.
upon it. He refused all nourishment, and pined
slowly away. Ellen knew he must die, but could
not say so. She could not shed one tear to relieve
her sorrowful heart. She neither spoke nor wept,
until her infant was laid in its coffin.
A friend had woven a wreath of beautiful flow-
ers, and laid it on the satin pillow of the coffin,
and placed a delicate rose-bud in the little hand
of the babe. Ellen went alone to take her last
kiss, when, seeing her babe so beautiful in death,
she seated herself on the floor and wept freely.
Who loved my babe so fondly ?" said she,
when she came from the room. Whohas been
so kind and thoughtful of me ? It has unsealed
my tears; now let me weep alone." We left her.
She came out of that room a changed woman.
She assisted us in our preparations for the burial
of the dead, spoke cheerfully to her husband, con-
versed freely about her children in heaven, and
remarked that henceforth her life should be wor-"
thy of a Christian. We buried the sweet babe
by the side of his brother, and planted a rose-tree
over his grave. Then our thoughts turned to
Ellen, whose whole manner indicated resignation
We were not surprised at the effect of grief
upon Ellen, for I have told you she was not edu-
sated to bear human misery with much con-