Front Cover
 Half Title
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Poor Woodcutter
 An Evening at Home
 The Temperance Meeting
 I'll See About it
 A Good Investment
 The Knight, the Hermit, and the...
 The Merchant's Dream
 Back Cover

Group Title: Arthur's juvenile library
Title: The poor woodcutter
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00001951/00001
 Material Information
Title: The poor woodcutter and other stories
Series Title: Arthur's juvenile library
Physical Description: 151 p., <2> leaves of plates : ill. ; 16 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Arthur, T. S ( Timothy Shay ), 1809-1885
Croome, William, 1790-1860 ( Engraver )
Gihon, William B ( Engraver )
Lippincott, Grambo & Co ( Publisher )
L. Johnson & Co ( Stereotyper )
Publisher: Lippincott, Grambo & Co
Place of Publication: Philadelphia
Manufacturer: Stereotyped by L. Johnson & Co.
Publication Date: 1852
Subject: Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Temperance -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Poverty -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Pictorial cloth bindings (Binding) -- 1852   ( rbbin )
Bldn -- 1852
Genre: Pictorial cloth bindings (Binding)   ( rbbin )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia
Statement of Responsibility: by T.S. Arthur ; with illustrations from original designs by Croome.
General Note: Series title page engraved by Gihon.
Funding: Brittle Books Program
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00001951
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002221315
oclc - 08455358
notis - ALG1536

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Half Title
        Page 3
    Title Page
        Page 4
        Page 5
    Table of Contents
        Page 6
        Page 7
    Poor Woodcutter
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 40
    An Evening at Home
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 56
    The Temperance Meeting
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
    I'll See About it
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
    A Good Investment
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
    The Knight, the Hermit, and the Man
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
    The Merchant's Dream
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
    Back Cover
        Page 152
        Page 153
Full Text







Fi r


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entered according to Act of Congres, in the year 1862, by
in the Qlrk' Ofle of the District Court of the E tern District of

BTer OTTrr BY 1. JOHNSON A 00.


THE POOR WOODCUTTER........................................ 9

AN EVENING AT HOME............................................ 41

BAR-ROOM.......................................................... 7

I'LL SEE ABOUT IT................................................. 70

A GOOD INVESTMENT.......................................... 92

BEAUTY.......................................................... .... 118


THE MERCHANT'S DREAM.................................... 148


WHILE several volumes in this series of books
for the young are addressed to children -as child-
ren, others, like this one, are addressed to them
as our future men and women, toward which estate
they are rapidly advancing, and in which they will
need for their guidance all things good and true
that can be stored up in their memories. Most
of the actors are men and women,-and the trials
and temptations to which they are subjected, such
as are experienced in maturer years. The object
is to fix in the young mind, by familiar illustra-
tions, true principles and just views of life and
its varied responsibilities.

A2 T


AS Mr. Edgar was leaving the break-
fast room, one cold morning in Febru-
ary, his wife called after him, and said-
"Our wood is gone; we must have more
"Not all gone!" returned Mr. Edgar, in
a tone of surprise.
"Yes. Sally says there are only three
or four sticks in the cellar."
"I thought we had enough to last all
winter," said Mr. Edgar.
"The cold has been unusually severe,
you must remember," was replied.
"I know. But it is now only the begin-
ning of February. A cord of good hickory


wood ought to have lasted all winter. Per-
kins says he doesn't burn but one cord in
his air-tight stove from November to April."
"I don't know how it is," said Mrs. Ed-
gar, a little fretfully; "I'm sure the nursery
is never too warm."
"It's wasted by the servants in kindling
fires in the range and heater, I suppose,"
remarked Mr. Edgar, as he closed the door
after him, and went away.
Mr. Edgar happened to feel just at this
time, particularly poor. His income was
not large, yet ample, if dispensedowith pro-
per care, for the comfortable support of his
family. A rather freer use of money than
.was prudent, all things considered, had
drained his purse so low as to bring on, as
just said, a feeling of poverty; .and the
thought of having to pay out four or five
dollars for wood, when he had believed that
there was fuel enough in the cellar to last
until spring opened, was, in consequence,
most unpleasant. It seemed little better
than throwing so much money away. No


sCch feeling was experienced a week before,
when he paid three dollars for concert
tickets, nor when, a few days previously,
he expended ten dollars in porcelain orna-
ments for the pier-table and mantel.
But it was in liberality of this kind that
the poor feeling had its origin. Mr. Ed-
gar found that money had been going too
freely, and that the purse-strings must be
held with a tighter hand. Too suddenly
upon this resolution came-the announce-
ment that more wood was needed.
"I'll get only a quarter of a cord," said
Mr. Edgar, as he walked along toward
his office; "that, surely, ought to carry
us through the cold weather."
But on reflection, seeing that it was only
the first week in February, and that fire
would have to be-kept up in the stove for
nearly three months, Mr. Edgar rather
doubted the ability of a quarter of a cord
of wood to afford the amount of warmth
required. This conclusion of his mind was
evidenced by a sigh. Instead of going di-


rect to the wharf and making the purchase,
Mr. Edgar went to his office, where he gave
up his thoughts to business until about
half-past two o'clock. He then stepped
down to the wharf, to purchase the wood
previously to going home to dinner. He
had settled the question as to the quantity
that must be bought. Nothing less than
half a cord would be sufficient.
The day was very cold; colder than he
had supposed; for in his comfortable office
but few evidences of the degree of tempera-
ture without was apparent. As he drew
near the wood-wharves on the Delaware,
the sharp wind came rushing by, causing
him to shiver beneath his double-wadded
"Any wood, sir?" inquired a carter,
tipping his hat to Mr. Edgar, as that gen-
tleman reached the wharves.
"Yes," was replied indifferently.
"May I haul it, sir?"
"I don't care."


"Do you wish it sawed?" eagerly asked
"Oh yes." So that much was settled.
Into the little six-by-eight office of the
corder, Mr. Edgar thrust himself. It was
filled with men, poorly clad, and bearing
about them many signs of extreme poverty.
Most of them were there waiting for some
job to turn up by which they could earn a
trifle. The extreme cold had driven them
into the office.
Mr. Edgar looked at these poor men,
but he did not feel any pity for them. Not
that he was indifferent to human want or
suffering; but his mind was intent on
knowing the price of wood, and he was
somewhat worried at being compelled to
expend money when he felt so very poor.
"What is hickory?" inquired Mr; Ed-
gar, as he crowded up to the border's desk.
"Six dollars," was the answer.
"Do you want it sawed, sir?" inquired
a man in a quick voice. .
"I have a sawyer," replied Mr Edgar.


"Shall I haul it for you ?" asked another.
Too late, Jack," answered a man with
a whip under his arm, smiling as he spoke;
"I'm ahead of you in that job."
"What is oak?" inquired Mr. Edgar,
who thought the hickory too high in price.
"Five and a quarter."
"The difference is too small. I must
have the hickory," was replied.
"How much do you want?" asked the
"Only half a cord."
"Do you wish it split ?" inquired a man
who looked as if he was acquainted with
few of the comforts of life, and was not
over-supplied with things necessary.
"No," replied the buyer, an expression
of impatience escaping him.
"Walk out and look at the wood," said
the corder; you'll find none better on the
The price is high."
"Not for this season. Last year, hickory
brought seven dollars."


Mr. Edgar felt that six dollars was very
high. Five and a half he had fixed as a
maximum rate in his mind.
"Well, I suppose I must take it," fell
from his lips in company with a sigh. And
he moved down toward the great piles of
wood on the wharf, to look at the article
he was purchasing. The carter and saw-
yer were by his side. After selecting the
wood, he inquired of the former as to the
price of hauling.
Three 'levies," replied the carter.
Too much. I have never paid over
half-a-dollar a cord."
It's the regular price for half a cord of
hickory," returned the carter.
What are you going to charge me for
sawing ?" asked Mr. Edgar, turning towards
a poor Irishman, who stood by with his
saw on his arm.
How many cuts will there be ?"
Two. I want it sawed into three pieces."
That will be just a cord ?"


"Seventy-five cents."
"What !"
"Three quarters is the price of sawing
I'm sure I never paid over half-a-dollar,
or sixty-two cents, at most."
"You may have got pine or oak sawed
for that, but not hickory," said the sawyer.
"Is three quarters the regular price?"
inquired Mr. Edgar of the carter.
"Yes, sir," answered the man of the
whip, "they always get that. And I'm
sure, sir, that if you were to run a saw
through a cord of hard, seasoned hickory,
you wouldn't think yourself too well paid
even at seventy-five cents."
This was a form of argument that car-
ried with it a convincing force. Mr. Ed-
gar disputed the charge no further. While
he yet stood musing over the great price
his half-cord was going to cost him, the
man who had asked if he did not wish it
split, and who had followed him along the


wharf, said, as he touched his hat re-
I'd like to split it for you, sir."
Mr. Edgar remembered, by this time,
that he had no one at home who could split
the wood after it was sawed. So he in-
quired as to the cost, remarking, at the
same time, that, as it was for an air-tight
stove, not more than half of it would need
to be cleft, and that only into two pieces
"I'll do it for half-a-dollar," said the
"Half-a-dollar!" returned Mr. Edgar, in
surprise; "why you ask more than the
cost of hauling. Oh no! I shall give no
such price as that-rll split the wood my-
self, first. If you choose to do it for a
quarter, you may. Not one half of it will
have to be touched with an axe."
The man shook his head, and said that
he couldn't walk over'a mile and split half
a cord of wood for twenty-five cents, even
if he was very poor.


"You're doing nothing," remarked Mr.
Though I may get a job before night
worth a dollar, instead of a quarter."
Mr. Edgar felt, as he looked at the man,
whose clothes were poor, and above whose
thin face masses of gray hair were visible,
that it was hardly generous to beat him
down so low for a job of work that it would
take him at least a couple of hours, if not
more, to perform, so he said-
The wood is merely to be thrown into
+e vault beneath the pavement. If you
will pile it after it is in, I'll give you half-
Very well," replied the man, "I will
do it."
Mr. Edgar next obtained his bill from
the corder, and paying it, started home to
It was nearly four o'clock when the wood
arrived. Half an hour afterward, Mr.
Edgar sat down in his parlour with one of
his children on his lap, and glanced out of


the window. The wood-sawyer, a hearty-
looking Irishman, was working away with
an energy that brought the perspiration to
his face, although the thermometer was
within five degrees of zero; but the other
man, who was splitting the wood and
throwing it into the cellar, was slower in
his movements, and appeared to be suffer-
ing from the severity of the weather. As
Mr. Edgar sat at the window of his warm
and comfortable parlour, and looked out at
this poor man, who swung his axe slowly,
he noticed his countenance more particu-
larly than he had done before. It was
marked with many furrows, worn into it
by toil or suffering, and had something
subdued and sad, as if affliction and disap-
pointment had been his attendants at some
part of his journey through life. As Mr.
Edgar looked at him, marking the slow
progress he made in his hard work, and
then thought of the many comforts he en-
joyed, a feeling of pity came into his heart.
"Poor man! You have to work hard
II.-2 2


for so small a pittance," he said to himself,
as he sighed and moved from the window.
He made an effort, in doing this, to turn
his thoughts. from the man; but this was
not so easily accomplished. In thinking
of him, he could not help contrasting his
own labour and its reward, with the labour
and reward of the woodcutter.
"It will take him at least two hours to
get through with this work," said he men-
tally; "and what will the hard labour yield ?
Fifty cents! And, in all probability, he
has a wife and children at home. Ah me!
the condition of the poor is hard enough."
With these thoughts came an inclination
to pay the man more for his work than he
had agreed to give him. This, however,
was met, instantly, by an opposing argu-
ment that arose in his mind almost spon-
"A half-dollar for two hours' work,"
said he, is very good for a labouring-man.
Why, that would be two dollars-and-a-half
for a day's work of ten hours."


To meet this came the thought that split-
ting and piling wood was not steady work;
and that, in all probability, the half-cord
upon which the man was now engaged, was
his only job for the day. This view of the
case was not so pleasant.
A recollection of some business at his
office which required attention on that af-
ternoon, caused these thoughts to retire.
When the man is done piling away the
wood in the cellar, pay him half-a-dollar,"
said Mr. Edgar to his wife, as he was leav-
*ing the house to proceed to his office.
It was after six o'clock when Mr. Edgar
returned home. The wind rushed and
moaned along the streets, and the cold,
which had increased by several degrees
since midday, penetrated his warm gar-
ments, and caused him to shiver as the
chilly air seemed to pass through them as
if they were but gossamer. On arriving at
home, Mr. Edgar was rather surprised to
find the man he had employed still cutting


wood in front of his house, although it was
getting quite dark.
"A'n't you done yet?" said he, as he
stood at his door.
"Very nearly," replied the man. "I
have only a few sticks more to split, and
it won't take me a great while to pile it up
in the cellar."
Mr. Edgar went in and joined his family,
who were gathered in the parlours await-
ing his return. His children were all well
clad, healthy, and happy, and both he and
his family were in the enjoyment of every
comfort. As he sat down among them, he
could not help thinking of the man at work
before his door, nor was he able to repress
a faint sigh, as he thought of what would
be the condition of his beloved ones were
he able to earn only the pittance he had
grudged to the poor labourer.
But these thoughts gradually retired, and
the man was not again remembered until
they were all assembled in the dining-room
to partake of the evening meal. Then, the


room being in the basement, Mr. Edgar
could hear him piling the wood below. It
was full three hours since the work was
commenced, and yet it was not completed.
He was in a warm, bright room, clad in his
dressing-gown, and with his family around
him, while the poor woodcutter was in the
cold cellar, alone, toiling by the light of a
dim lamp, with his thoughts turning, per-
haps, upon his little ones who awaited his
coming that they might divide the loaf he
would bring them.
As he thought thus, Mr. Edgar felt how
small was the price that awaited the com-
pletion of the poor man's task.
I will pay him more," said he, in his
own mind. But the moment this was con-
cluded, he remembered that, to do so, would
increase the price of his half-cord of wood.
The poor feeling came back, and he said-
"I can't afford this. If I were to over-
pay every one after this fashion, I would
find myself badly off by the end of the year.
The carter and wood-sawyer are just as


much entitled to a higher rate of payment
as this man. They have the fixing of their
own price, and if they are satisfied, I am
sure I ought to be."
But, for all this, humanity kept urging
the claims of the woodcutter in the cellar.
Sometimes Mr. Edgar would determine to
act generously, and hand him seventy-five
cents on the completion of his work. But
that would make his half-cord of wood cost
nearly five dollars.
"If I were to increase all my expenses
at this rate," he argued with himself, "I
would be in debt several hundred dollars
at the end of the year."
And then he would fall back to his ori-
ginal state, and content himself with the
reflection that fifty cents was enough for
the job.
"A smart man could have done it in
half the time it has taken him."
This thought laid the matter to rest; but
the rest was only temporary. Thought is
the form of the affection; and sympathy


for the poor woodcutter clothed itself,
spontaneously, in generous thoughts.
At length the work was done. Mr. Ed-
gar heard the man's slow, heavy tread, as
he ascended the cellar-stairs. Now came
the struggle between humanity and the
poor feeling from which he had suffered all
day. More than a dozen times, before the
servant came in and said that the wood-
cutter had- finished his work, did he alter
his mind. Now he had seventy-five cents
in his fingers, and now fifty.
"Half-a-dollar is enough-it is all he
asked," he would say, as he commenced
drawing his hand from his pocket with only
the single coin in his fingers. "But he is
poor, and has worked very hard. A quar-
ter of a dollar is a little matter to you, but
much to him," would cause the hand to
dive down again into the pocket, and take
up an additional twenty-five cent piece.
But from the other side would come a
word, and then only the half-dollar re-


"The man is done," said a domestic,
opening the door of the dining-room, while
this debate was still going on.
The time for the decision had arrived;
yet the question was not settled. Regard
for another's good had not been able to
gain the victory over selfishness. There
was still an active struggle. But the ne-
cessity for an instant determination caused
a slight confusion in the mind of Mr. Ed-
gar, and in this state the half-dollar was
handed to the domestic, who took the mo-
ney and retired. He heard her close the
door after her-heard her speak to the man
in the entry, and heard the man walk away;
while a painful conviction that he had not
done right in the case before him impressed
itself upon his mind. Now that it was too
late to recall the act, he deeply regretted
what he had done, or rather what -he had
neglected to do, and felt that in saving the
fourth of a dollar, he had gained only a
disquieted mind.
"To think," he murmured to himself,


"that I could have let the saving of such
a paltry sum restrain me from the perform-
ance of an act of humanity. I spend dol-
lars in the gratification of my senses, and
part freely with the money in doing so;
but when the question of compensation to
a poor labouring-man comes up, I chaffer for
the value of a few pennies, and beat down
to a minimum price, instead of taking a
pleasure in paying liberally. Ah me! what
strange inconsistency!"
Leaving Mr. Edgar to his not very plea-
sant reflections, we will follow the wood-
cutter. His name was Harlan. He had
been better off than now--owning at one
time a small farm near the city, from which
he derived a comfortable support for his
family. In an evil hour he was induced
to sell this farm and remove to Philadelphia,
for the purpose of keeping a store. The
result was as might have been expected.
Knowing nothing of business, he was not
able to conduct it successfully. By the
end of three years, he found himself unable


to go on any longer. Losses from trust
ing out his goods, and from unwise pur-
chases, added to the greatly increased ex-
pense of his family from residing in a city,
consumed all that he had, and he was forced
to close his store, sell off his stock, and set-
tle up the business. If, after this, he had
been even with the world, it would not
have been so bad. But debt was added to
the burden of his troubles.
The question, What next to do ?" was
now more easily asked than answered.
Mr. Harlan had no trade at which he could
work, and was comparatively a stranger in
the city. His chances for getting employ-
ment were, therefore, small; and as winter
was closing in, he might well begin to feel
deeply troubled, especially as his family
consisted of his wife and three children.
In order to meet some of the most urgent
of his creditors, who were not satisfied when
they saw the man broken up in business,
and every barrel, box, and package of his
goods sold off, and the proceeds distributed,


but still clamoured for their pay and threat-
ened all manner of consequences if the mo-
ney did not come, he sold the best of his
furniture-thus depriving his family of
many comforts, and reducing himself to a
still lower position.
"What shall I do?"
Ah! how often and anxiously was that
question asked, and how silent was all
around after its utterance. Bread must be
had for his little ones, and no man was
more willing to work for it than he; but
who would give him work ? By a neighbour
who had dealt in his store, and with whom
he conferred on the subject, he was advised
to try and get a place as labourer in one of
the stores on the wharves. Acting on this
suggestion, he visited the store of every
merchant from South to Vine streets, and
asked for work; but without success. The
fall business was over, and many were dis-
pensing with regular aid instead of employ-
ing more.
"I must do something," said the unhap-


py man, in this crisis of his affairs. "I
will saw wood-do any thing for my chil-
dren. How does Gardiner manage to get
bread ?" he asked of the neighbour before
mentioned. He spoke of a poor man
living not far off.
"By picking up odd jobs along the
wharves," replied the man. "He splits
and piles up wood, carries bundles, and
does little turns of one kind and another
for people who may happen to need his
On this hint Harlan acted. He went
on the next day to the wharf, with an axe
under his arm, and came home at night as
poor as he had gone out in the morning.
Several opportunities had offered for ob-
taining work, but more eager seekers for
employment thrust him aside and secured
even the jobs for which he had half bar-
gained. On the day following, he was
more successful, and earned a dollar.
From that time he went to the wharves
regularly in search of work. Sometimes


he did not earn half-a-dollar during the
whole day; at other times he did better.
But the average of his gains was not over
four dollars a week. This sum he found
altogether insufficient for the wants of his
family. Many privations were the conse-
quence. Sickness came at last to add to
the distress of the unhappy man. For two
weeks he was confined to the house-most
of the time to his bed-and had it not been
for the kindness and charity of some neigh-
bours, his family would have suffered for
As soon as he could get out again, and
before he had so far recovered his strength
as to be really able to go to work, he was
on the wharf, seeking employment. He
earned but a trifle on the first and second
days, and on the third day his only job was
that obtained from Mr. Edgar. The split-
ting and piling of half a cord of seasoned
hickory wood was work beyond his strength.
It took him full three hours to perform it,
and when he received his wages and turn-


ed his steps homeward, his head was ach-
ing violently; he felt feverish, and almost
staggered as he walked.
Mr. Edgar, as has been seen, was far
from feeling happy. He could not get the
thought of the poor labouring-man out of
his mind, try as he would, nor help feeling
that, even though he had paid him the
price agreed upon for his work, he had not
dealt by him fairly. So occupied was his
mind with this idea, that he was not able
to sleep for nearly two hours after retiring
for the night. With the morning came
back the same thoughts. He felt troubled
and ashamed. On going to his office, he
found himself still haunted by the man's
,image. Finally he determined to go to
the wharves, search him out, and pay him
half-a-dollar more, in hopes thus to ease
his conscience, or lay the troubled spirit
that was haunting him. Acting up to this
resolution, Mr. Edgar went down to the
Delaware, and walked along the wood-
wharves for ten or fifteen minutes, in hopes


of seeing the man. But his search was not
successful. As he was about going away,
he met the sawyer who had been at his
house on the day before, and remembered
"Have you seen any thing of the man
who split my wood for me yesterday ?" he
asked of the sawyer.
He hasn't been on the wharf to-day,"
was replied.
Where does he live ?"
"In Federal street, near Seventh."
"Do you know his name ?"
"Yes, sir. His name is Harlan."
"Is he very poor ?"
"Yes, sir; and he's been sick. He
wasn't able to undertake such a job as he
had yesterday, and I'm afraid it has put
him back."
"Has he a family?"
"Oh yes. He has a wife and children."
Mr. Edgar stood musing for some mo-
ments. Then he asked particularly as to


the man's residence, and on being told, went
In a small room, in the third story of a
house in the lower part of the city, sat a
man in a deeply desponding attitude. Three
children were near him, the oldest not over
seven years of age; and a woman stood by
the fire of a few coals that scarcely took the
chill from the air of the small apartment,
washing. The woman worked on in si-
lence, and the man sat with his eyes
gloomily cast upon the floor.
"Indeed, Jane," said the man, "I must
go out and earn something to-day. All
that I received yesterday is' gone; and
when our dinner is eaten, there will not
be a mouthful of food left."
The man, as he walked across the room,
staggered, and had to lean against the wall
to support himself. He was very pale, and
his eyes were drooping and dim.
The wife left her washing instantly, and
going to her husband's side, took hold of
his arm and drew him towards the bed


that was in the room, saying, as she did
"You must lie down, Henry. Indeed
you must; for you are sick. Don't think
of going out. You are not able to work,
and the attempt will do you harm. I am
sure you could not walk a square."
While she yet spoke, she had drawn him
to the bed, upon which he sank down,
Heaven help us!"
Just then came a knock at the door.
On being opened, a man stepped in and
"Does Mr. Harlan live here ?"
At this inquiry, the sick man started up,
and recognized in the visitor the person
for whom he had done the job of work on
the day previous, that had proved too
much for his strength. Hope instantly
came into his despairing heart, and he
"0 sir-save my children!"
All night the man had lain in a raging


fever, and his pulses yet beat quickly and
irregularly. He had little more strength
than a child. The excitement caused by
this sudden and unexpected appearance,
was too much for him, and he fell back, on
making this almost wildly uttered appeal,
so exhausted that he panted like a fright-
ened child who had shrunk trembling upon
its mother's bosom.
Mr. Edgar, for he was the visiter, felt
deeply moved by what he saw and heard.
Sitting down by the bedside, and speaking
a word of encouragement to the poor man
in order to quiet his mind, he proceeded to
make inquiries of the wife as to their cir-
cumstances and the causes which had led
to their present destitution. The narra-
tive affected him much.
"No, no," said he, after the wife had
finished her relation, which ended with a
reference to her husband's wish to go out
and look for work on that day, "he must
remain in bed, and I will send him a phy-
sician. Here is more than he could earn;"


and he handed the woman a couple of dol-
lars. "Get necessary food for yourself
and children. To-morrow I will either
see you myself, or send to know if Mr.
Harlan is better. In the mean time, don't
let your minds be troubled. Better em-
ployment can be had for you, I am very
If we were only back in the country
again!" sighed the woman.
"Oh yes," said Mr. Harlan; "if we
were only on some little place in the coun-
try! It was a sad day for us when we
turned our thoughts towards the city."
The way may open for you to get back,"
returned Mr. Edgar; "at least, hope for
the best. You have evidently reached the
lowest point in the descending circle of for-
tune, and it is but fair to think that the
movement will now be upward."
When Mr. Edgar retired, it was with a
deeper feeling of sympathy for the poor
than he had ever known; and his cheek
burned as he called to mind the many in-


stances in which he had paid them their
small wages with a grudging spirit, and
meanly beaten them down in their prices
for work, when these prices were already
so low as to be scarcely sufficient for the
commonest necessaries of life. He thought
of the many times he had chaffered for a
sixpence or a shilling with a porter or poor
labourer, and after gaining a trifling ad-
vantage at the expense of justice, thrown
double the amount away in some foolish
expenditure. All this was humiliating,
but salutary. It was a lesson in life not
soon to be forgotten. In Mr. Harlan's case
he took an active interest. He saw that
his family were properly cared for until he
was able to go to work again, and then ob-
tained for him the place of overseer on the
farm of an acquaintance who wanted a com-
petent farmer. When spring opened, Har-
lan went back to the country with a hope-
ful spirit, and Mr. Edgar went on his way
through life more thoughtful than he had
been, and far more considerate of the poor.



Page 47.


"NOT going to the ball?" said Mrs. Lind-
ley, witl a look and tone of surprise.
"What ha. Some over the girl ?"
"I do' t know, but she says she is not
Doesn't her dress fit?"
"Yes, beautifully."
"What is the matter, then ?"
"Indeed, ma, I cannot tell. You had
better go up and see her. It is the strangest
notion in the world. Why, you couldn't
hire me to stay at home."
Mrs. Lindley went up-stairs, and, enter-
ing her daughter's room, found her sitting
on the side of the bed, with a beautiful
ball-dress in her hand.
m.-D 4


"It isn't possible, Helen, that you are
not going to this ball ?" said she.
Helen looked up with a half-serious, half-
smiling expression on her face:
"I've been trying, for the last half-
hour," she replied, *" to decide whether I
ought to go, or stay at home. I think,
perhaps, I ought to remain at home."
"But what earthly reason can you
have for doing so? Don't you like your
dress ?"
"Oh yes! very much. I think it beau-
Doesn't it fit you?"
"As well as any dress I ever had."
"Are you not well?"
"Very well."
"Then why not go to the ball ?" It will
be the largest and most fashionable of the
season. You know that your father and
myself are both going. We shall want to
see you there,'of course. Your father will
require some very good reason for your ab-



Helen looked perplexed at her mother's
last remark.
Do you think father will be displeased
if I remain at home?" she asked.
I think he will, unless you can satisfy
him that your reason for doing so is a very
good one. Nor shall I feel that you are
doing right. I wish all my children to act
under the government of a sound judg-
ment. Impulse, or reasons not to be spoken
of freely to their parents, should in no case
influence their actions."
Helen sat thoughtful for more than a
minute, and then said, her eyes growing
dim as she spoke-
I wish to stay at home for Edward's
"And why for his, my dear ?"
He doesn't go to the ball, you know."
Because he is too young, and too back-
ward. You couldn't hire him to go there.
But, that is no reason why you should re-
main at home. You would never partake of
any social amusement were this always to


influence you. Let him spend the evening
in reading. He must not expect his sisters
to deny themselves all recreation in which
he cannot or will not participate."
"He does not. I know he would not
hear to such a thing as my staying at home
on his account."
"Then why stay?"
"Because I feel that I ought to do so.
This is the way I have felt all day, when-
ever I have thought of going. If I were
to go, I know that I would not have a
moment's enjoyment. He need not know
why I remain at home. To tell him that
I did not wish to go will satisfy his mind."
I shall not urge the matter, Helen,"
Mrs. Lindley said, after a silence of some
moments. "You are old enough to judge
in a matter of this kind for yourself. But
I must say, I think you rather foolish.
You will not find Edward disposed to sa-
crifice so much for you."
"Of that I do not think, mother. Of
that I ought not to think."


"Perhaps not. Well, you may do as
like. But I don't know what your father
will say."
Mrs. Lindley then left the room.
Edward Lindley was at the critical age
of eighteen; that period when many young
men, especially those who have been blest
with sisters, would have highly enjoyed a
ball. But Edward was shy, timid, and
bashful in company, and could hardly ever
be induced to go out to parties with his sis-
ters. Still, he was intelligent for his years,
and companionable. His many good quali-
ties endeared him to his family, and drew
forth from his sisters toward him a very
tender regard.
Among his male friends were several
about his own age, members of families
with whom his own was on friendly terms.
With these he associated frequently, and
with two or three others, quite intimately.
For a month or two Helen noticed that
one or another of these young friends
called every now and then for Edward,


in the evening, and that he went out with
them and stayed until bedtime. But unless
his sisters were from home, he never went
of his own accord. The fact of his being
out with these young men had, from the
first, troubled Helen; though the reason
of her feeling troubled she could not tell.
Edward had good principles, and she could
not bring herself to entertain fears of any
clearly defined evil. Still a sensation of
uneasiness was always produced when he
was from home in the evening.
Her knowing that Edward would go out
after they had all left, was the reason why
Helen did not wish to attend the ball.
The first thought of this had produced an
unpleasant sensation in her mind, which
increased the longer she debated the ques-
tion of going away or remaining at home.
Finally, she decided that she would not go.
This decision took place after the inter-
view with her mother, which was only
half an hour from the time of starting.
Edward knew nothing of the intention


of his sister. He was in his own room,
dressing to go out, and supposed, when he
heard the carriage drive from the door,
that Helen had gone with the other mem-
bers of the family. On descending to the
parlour, he was surprised to find her sitting
by the centre table, with a book in her
"Helen! Is this you! I thought you had
gone to the ball. Are you not well ?" he
said quickly and with surprise, coming up
to her side.
Looking into her brother's face with a
smile of sisterly regard, Helen replied, "I
have concluded to stay at home this even-
ing. I am going to keep you company."
"Are you, indeed! Right glad am I of
it! though I am sorry you have deprived
yourself of the pleasure of this ball, which,
I believe, is to be a very brilliant one. I
was just going out, because it is so dull at
home when you are all away."
I am not particularly desirous of going
to the ball. So little so, that the thought


of your being left here all alone had suffi-
cient influence over me to keep me away."
"Indeed! Well, I must say you are
kind," Edward returned, with feeling. The
self-sacrificing act of his sister had touched
him sensibly.
Both Helen and her brother played well.
She upon the harp and piano, and he upon
the flute and violin. Both were fond of
music, and practised and played frequently
together. Part of the evening was spent in
this way, much to the satisfaction of each.
Then an hour passed in reading and con-
versation, after which music was again re-
sorted to. Thus lapsed the time pleasantly
until the hour for retiring came, when they
separated, both with an internal feeling of
pleasure more delightful than they had ex-
perienced for a long time. It was nearly
three o'clock before Mr. and Mrs. Lindley,
and the daughter who had accompanied
them to the ball, came home. Hours be-
fore, the senses of both Edward and Helen
had been locked in forgetfulness.


Time passed on. EdwardLindley grew up
and became a man of sound principles-a
blessing to his family and society. He saw
his sisters well married; and himself, final-
ly, led to the altar a lovely maiden. She
made him a truly happy husband. On the
night of his wedding, as he sat beside
Helen, he paused for some time, in the
midst of a pleasant conversation, thought-
fully. At last he said-
Do you remember, sister, the night you
stayed home from the ball to keep me com-
pany ?"
That was many years ago. Yes, I re-
member it very well, now you have re-
called it to my mind."
"I have often since thought, Helen," he
said, with a serious air, "that by the simple
act of thus remaining at home for my sake,
you were the means of saving me from de-
How so ?" asked the sister.
"I was just then beginning to form an
intimate association with young men of


my own age, nearly all of whom have since
turned out badly. I did not care a great
deal about their company; still, I liked so-
ciety, and used to be with them frequently
-especially when you and Mary went out
in the evening. On the night of the ball
to which you were going, these young men
had a supper, and I was to have been with
them. I did not wish particularly to join
them, but preferred doing so to remaining at
home alone. To find you, as I did, so un-
expectedly, in the parlour, was an agree-
able surprise indeed. I stayed at home with
a new pleasure, which was heightened by
the thought that it was your love for me
that had made you deny yourself for my
gratification. We read together on that
evening, we played together, we talked of
many things. In your mind I had never
before seen so much to inspire my own
with high and pure thoughts. I remembered
the conversation of the young men with
whom I had been associating, and in which
I had taken pleasure, with something like


disgust. It was low, sensual, and too much
of it vile and demoralizing. Never, from
that hour, did I join them. Their way,
even in the early stage of life's journey,
I saw to be downward, and downward it
has ever since been tending. How often
since have I thought of that point in time,
so full-fraught with good and evil influences!
Those few hours spent with you seemed to
take scales from my eyes. I saw with a
new vision. I thought and felt differently.
Had you gone to the ball, and I to meet
those young men, no one can tell what
might have been the consequences. Sen-
sual indulgences, carried to excess, amid
songs and sentiments calculated to awaken
evil instead of good feelings, might have
stamped upon my young and delicate mind
a bias to low affections that never would
have been eradicated. That was the great
starting-point in life-the period when I
was coming into a state of rationality and
freedom. The good prevailed over the evil,
and by the agency of my sister, as an angel


sent by the Author of all benefits to save
Like Helen Lindley, let every elder sis-
ter be thoughtful of her brothers at that
critical period in life, when the boy is
about passing up to the stage of manhood,
and she may save them from many a snare
set for their unwary feet by the evil one.
In closing this little sketch, we can say no-
thing better than has already been said by
an accomplished American authoress, Mrs.
"So many temptations,'' she remarks,
"beset young men, of which young women
know nothing, that it is of the utmost
importance that your brothers' evenings
should be happily past at home, that
their friends should be your friends, that
their engagements should be the same as
yours, and that various innocent amuse-
ments should be provided for them in the
family circle. Music is an accomplishment
chiefly valuable as a home enjoyment, as
rallying round the piano the various mem-


bers of a family, and harmonizing their
hearts as well as voices, particularly in de-
votional strains. I khow no more agree-
able and interesting spectacle, than that of
brothers and sisters playing and singing
together those elevated compositions in
music and poetry which gratify the taste
and purify the heart, while their fond pa-
rents sit delighted by. I have seen and
heard an elder sister thus leading the fa-
mily choir, who was the soul of harmony
to the whole household, and whose life was
a perfect example of those virtues which I
am here endeavouring to inculcate. Let
no one say, in reading this chapter, that
too much love is here required of sisters,
that no one can be expected to lead such a
self-sacrificing life: for the sainted one to
whom I refer was all I would ask my sis-
ter to be, and a happier person never lived.
To do good and to make others happy was
her rule of life, and in this she found the
art of making herself so.
"Sisters should always be willing to
i.--4 I.-B


walk, ride, visit with their brothers; and
esteem it a privilege to be their companions.
It is worth while to learn innocent games
for the sake of furnishing brothers with
amusements and making home the most
agreeable place to them.
"I have been told by some, who have
passed unharmed through the temptations
of youth, that they owed their escape from
many dangers to the intimate companion-
ship of affectionate and pure-minded sis-
ters. They have been saved from a ha-
zardous meeting with idle company by
some home engagement, of which their
sisters were the charm; they have refrained
from mixing with the impure, because
they would not bring home thoughts and
feelings which they could not share with
those trusting, loving friends; they have
put aside the wine-cup and abstained from
stronger potations, because they would not
profane with their fumes the holy kiss with
which they were accustomed to bid their
sisters good-night."

Page 66.



THOMAS LE ROY was a mechanic, who
by industry and economy had saved
enough to buy himself a neat little cottage,
with ground for a garden and pasturage
for a cow. Early in the mornings, be-
fore he went to his work, he gave an
hour or two, during the spring and sun
mer months, to improving and beautify-
ing this little homestead. All his fences
were in perfect order; the shrubbery
nicely trimmed, and the vines trained
in the neatest manner. Every one said
that the grounds around his cottage were
better kept than any in the neighbourhood.


When remarks of this kind came to the
ears of Le Roy, which was frequently the
case, he felt highly gratified, and was sti-
mulated to increased efforts.
But the mechanic, with all his industry
and thrift, had one fault, and that a very
bad one, for it was a fault that increased
by indulgence. He would take his glass
occasionally; and would visit, at least two
or three times a week, the village tavern,
to meet a few acquaintances and talk over
the news. This habit troubled his wife,
who had, in her own family, seen and felt
the evil effects of intemperance, and shrank
with an instinctive fear from even the sha-
dow of the monster. Once or twice she
had hinted at the character of her feelings,
but the effect produced on the mind of her
husband was surprise and displeasure. He
felt in no danger, and was hurt that his
wife could even dream of such a thing as
his falling into habits of intemperance.
At first, Le Roy's visits to the tavern
were rarely oftener than once a week, and


then he never drank more than a single
glass. He went more for the pleasant com-
pany he found there. But, in process of
time, two evenings in the week saw the
mechanic at the tavern; and it generally
took two glasses of an evening to satisfy
his increasing desire for liquor. Three
evenings and three glasses were the next
progressive steps; and so on, until he felt
no longer contented at home a single even-
ing in the week.
The tavern-keeper, whose name was
Stephen Miller, had commenced his liquor-
selling business some ten years before, and
was then about the poorest man in the vil-
lage. He was poor, because he was too
lazy to work steadily at his trade, which
was that of a house-carpenter. At first he
opened, in a miserable little shanty of a
place, with a few jugs of liquor, and some
bad groceries to tempt people to his shop.
He didn't seem to do a great deal, but
somehow or other, at the end of a year, he
was able to buy the furniture of one of the


taverns in the village, which was sold at
the death of the owner, and assume the
responsibility of a public-house for the
entertainment of travellers. People won-
dered. They could not understand it.
How a man who never seemed to have
more than fifty dollars' worth of things
in his shop could save up three or four
hundred dollars in a year-the amount of
cash paid down by Miller-passed their
simple comprehension. None but he knew
how many glasses and pints were sold in a
day, nor how much profit was made on
every dram.
Two years after this the tavern-stand was
sold. Miller was the purchaser, and paid
down a thousand dollars of the purchase-
money! It was a mystery to every one
how a man who had been before so thrift-
less should now be getting along so fast.
A couple of years more and Miller bought
a farm in the neighbourhood, which one of
his best customers, who had fallen into in-
temperate habits, had neglected, and who,


in the end, found himself obliged to sell out.
Some people began to open their eyes after
this. It was plain enough that Jones had
lost his property through drunkenness;
though all did not see so plainly that, in
becoming its owner, Miller had not rendered
back to the community in which he lived
any equivalent use. Not long after this,
the house and acre-lot of another good cus-
tomer went into the hands of the sheriff,
and Miller was the purchaser.
What was Steve Miller looking about
here for, this afternoon?" asked Mrs. Le Roy
of her husband, one evening when he came
home to supper?
I'm sure I don't know," replied the me-
chanic. Looking about here ?"
Yes, he came along with another man,
and stood and looked at the house, and
talked for some time; and then .they both
went round, and looked over the fence into
the garden. I was ashamed to have them
do so, for every thing is so neglected to
what it used to be."


Le Roy made some indifferent answer,
merely to satisfy his wife, who seemed
worried by the incident. But the fact men-
tioned produced an unpleasant impression
on his mind.
I wonder what business he has spying
about my place?" said he to himself. "I
don't owe him any thing."
The satisfaction with which he uttered
the last part of the sentence was rather
diminished by the recollection that his bill
at the store had been suffered to run up
until it amounted to over sixty dollars, and
that he owed the shoemaker nearly twenty
more. Debts like these had never before
been permitted to accumulate.
After supper he was led by his inclina-
tions, as usual, to the bar-room of Miller,
which was always well filled with pleasant
companions. His wife saw him depart with
troubled feelings. She was, alas! too well
aware that he had entered the downward
road, and that his steps were on the way
to ruin.


Just off from the bar-room of Miller's
tavern was a little parlour, and Le Roy,
not feeling very social on that particular
evening, took his glass of liquor and news-
paper and sat apart from the rest of the
company, at a table close to the door of
this parlour, which stood ajar. He became
directly aware that the landlord was in
the next room, conversing with some one
in an undertone, and as he heard his own
name mentioned, he felt excused for listen-
ing attentively to all that was said.
Things don't look as tidy around him
as they used to," remarked the person who
was talking with Miller.
"Not by any means. I was told that
this was the case, and walked over to-day
to see for myself. Evidently he is running
down fast. I asked Phillips about him a
little while ago, and he told me that his
bill at the store was sixty dollars. In
former times he never owed a cent."
"He'll go to the dogs before long."
"I presume so. Well, I shall keep my


eye on that little place of his. I always
had a fancy for it, and would like to get it
at a bargain when it goes off, as it will
have to before a great while."
"You buy a good deal of property ?"
"What did you pay for Shriver's place?"
Nine hundred dollars."
"No more?"
"No; Shriver refused, once, to my cer-
tain knowledge, sixteen hundred for it."
He let it run down shamefully."
"Oh yes," replied the tavern-keeper.
"He became a mere sot, and neglected
every thing. I wouldn't trust him, now, for
a three-cent glass of whisky. His place
was sold, of course, and I bought it at a
bargain. I wouldn't take, this hour, an ad-
vance of four hundred dollars on the pur-
chase. It's always best to buy property
that has been suffered by a drunken fellow
to run down for a few years. It gets to
look a great deal worse than it really is,
and you're sure to buy a bargain."


No doubt, you'll have Le Roy's place,
in the end, under this system."
To a moral certainty. In about two
years he will have to sell; and see if I am
not the man who buys. I want that place
for my daughter Jane. As soon as I get it,
I will pull down the little kitchen, and build
a dining-room twenty feet square where
it stands. Half of the garden I will put in
a green lawn, and make an orchard of the
pasture-ground. You'll hardly know the
place in a year after I'm the owner."
Le Roy waited to hear no more. Rising
up quickly, he left the bar-room without
speaking to any one, and started on his
way homeward.
Have my place!" he muttered to him-
self as he hurried along, clenching his fist
and setting his teeth firmly as he spoke.
"Have my place We will see!"
On reaching his home and entering sud-
denly, Le Roy found his wife sitting by her
little work-table with her face bent down
and buried in her hands. She looked


up quickly, at the sound of his footsteps,
and he saw that tears were on her cheeks.
"Why, Anna! what's the matter?" he
"Oh, nothing," she replied evasively,
trying to force a smile.
Le Roy looked at her for some moments,
earnestly, and as he did so, the truth flashed
over his mind. She, too, saw as clearly as
the tavern-keeper, that he was on the road
to ruin!
"Anna,"-Le Roy spoke seriously, yet
with earnestness, and in a tone of affection
and confidence,-" Anna, I have found out
why Steve Miller was spying about here
"He wants this place for his daughter
Mrs. Le Roy looked bewildered.
"He thinks that, in about two years, I
will run it down, so that he will be able to
get it for about half its value. He was
looking to see how much progress I had


made in the road to ruin, and thinks the
prospect for his getting the place in about
two years very fair. He will tear down
the kitchen, and build a handsome dining-
room in its place, and so improve the
ground that it will hardly be known as
the same spot in a year. But, Anna,. he'll
find himself mistaken I've got my eyes
open. Not while I am living shall Steve
Miller own this property !"
Tears of thankfulness gushed from the
eyes of Mrs. Le Roy, as she said-
Oh, what a mountain you have taken
from my heart!"
On the next day, Le Roy related to every
acquaintance he met the conversation he
had heard while in Miller's bar-room;
and these told the story to others. So
that, before evening, it was all over the
"Let's go there in a crowd to-night,"
suggested one, and organize a temperance
society in the bar-room."
The suggestion struck the fancy of all


who heard it. That night the bar-room of
the tavern-keeper was filled to overflowing.
Miller was at first delighted, though a little
surprised that no one called for liquor, and
at the air of business that sat upon every
I move that Le Roy take the chair,"
said one.
The mechanic was handed to the post
of honour, when he related minutely the
occurrences and conversation of the day
previous; and then said that the object of
the meeting was to organize a temperance
society, and thus prevent the tavern-keeper
from getting all their property. "I can
assure the gentleman," he said in closing,
"that his daughter Jane will never live
in my place while I have breath in my
My hand to that!" was echoed around
the room by a dozen voices.
The society was regularly formed, the
pledge signed by every individual present,
and a vote of thanks to the landlord passed


for the use of his bar-room. Five minutes
afterward he occupied it alone.
Stephen Miller's affairs were never after-
ward as prosperous as they had been;
but fewer estates run down in the village,
and fewer families are reduced to beggary.
And so it would be in hundreds of towns
and villages, if the inhabitants would act
as Le Roy and his friends did in this case.'


MjR. EASY sat alone in his counting-
room, one afternoon, in a most comfort-
able frame, both as regards mind and body.
A profitable speculation in the morning had
brought the former into a state of great
complacency, and a good dinner had done
all that was required for the repose
of the latter. He was in that delicious,
half-asleep, half-awake condition, which, oc-
curring after dinner, is so very pleasant.
The newspaper, whose pages at first pos-
sessed a charm for his eyes, had fallen,
with the hand that held it, upon his knee.
His head was gently reclined backwards
against the top of a high leather-cushioned


chair; while his eyes, half-opened, saw all
things around him but imperfectly. Just
at this time the door was quietly opened,
and a lad of some fifteen or sixteen years,
with a pale, thin face, high forehead, and
large dark eyes, entered. He approached
the merchant with a hesitating step, and
soon stood directly before him.
Mr. Easy felt disturbed at this int'
for so he felt it. He knew the lao
the son of a poor widow, who hAd once
seen better circumstances than those that
now surrounded her. Her hus- had,
while living, been his intimate "4
he had promised him, at his dying hour, to
be the protector and adviser of his wife and
children. He had meant to do all he pro-
mised; but, not being very fond of trouble,
except where stimulated to activity by the
hope of gaining some good for himself, he
had not been as thoughtful in regard to
Mrs. Mayberry as he ought to have been.
She was a modest, shrinking, sensitive wo-
man, and had, notwithstanding her need of
III.-5 2


a friend and adviser, never called upon Mr.
Easy, nor even sent a request for him to act
for her in any thing, except once. Her hus-
band had left her poor. She knew little
of the world. She had three quite young
children, and one, the oldest, about sixteen.
Had Mr. Easy been true to his pledge, he
might have thrown many a ray upon her
dark path, and lightened her burdened
heart of many a doubt and fear. But he
had permitted more than a year to pass
since the death of her husband, without
having once called upon her. This neglect
had not been intentional. His will was
good, but never active at the present mo-
ment. "To-morrow," or "next week," or
" very soon," he would call upon Mrs. May-
berry; but to-morrow, or next week, or
very soon, had never yet come.
As for the widow, soon after her hus-
band's death, she found that poverty was
to be added to affliction. A few hundred
dollars made up the sum of all that she
received after the settlement of his busi-


ness, which had never been in a very pros-
perous condition. On this, under the ex-
ercise of extreme frugality, she had been
enabled to live for nearly a year. Then
her scanty store made it but too apparent
that individual exertion was required in
order to procure the means of support for
her little family. Ignorant of the way in
which this was to be done, and having no
one to advise her, nearly two months more
passed before she could determine what to
do. By that time she had but a few dol-
lars left, and was in a state of great mental
distress and uncertainty. She then applied
for work at some of the shops, and obtained
common sewing, but at prices that could
not yield her any thing like a support.
Hiram, her oldest son, had been kept at
school up to this period. But now she had
to withdraw him. It was impossible any
longer to pay his tuition fees. He was an
intelligent lad-active in mind,, and pure
in his moral principles; but, like his mo-
ther, sensitive, and inclined to avoid obser-


ovation. Like her, too, he had a proud in-
dependence of feeling, that made him shrink
from asking or accepting a favour, or putting
himself under an obligation to any one.
He first became aware of his mother's true
condition, when she took him from school,
and explained the reason for so doing. At
once his mind rose into the determination to
do something to aid his mother. He felt
a glowing confidence, arising from the con-
sciousness of strength within. He felt that
he had both the will and the power to act,
and to act efficiently.
"Don't be disheartened, mother," said
he, with animation. I can and will do
something. I can help you. You have
worked for me a great many years. Now
I will work for you."
Where there is a will there is a way.
But it is often the case, that the will lacks
the kind of intelligence that enables it to
find the right way at once. So it proved
in the case of Hiram Mayberry. He had
a strong enough will, but did not know how


to bring it into activity. Good, without
its appropriate truth, is impotent. Of this
the poor lad soon became conscious. To
the question of his mother-
"What can you do, child?" an answer
came not so readily.
Oh, I can do a great many things," was
easily said; but, even as he said this, a
sense of inability followed.
The will impels, and then the under-
standing seeks for the means of effecting
the purposes of the will. In the case of
young Hiram, thought followed desire.
He pondered for many days over the
means by which he was to aid his mother.
But, the more he thought, the more con-
scious did he become that, in the world,
he was but a weak boy. That however
strong might be his purpose, his means of
action were limited. His mother could aid
him but little. She had but one sugges-
tion to make, and that was, that he should
endeavour to get a situation in some store
or counting-room. This he attempted to


do. Following her direction, he called
upon Mr. Easy, who promised to see about
looking him up a situation. It happened,
the day after, that a neighbour spoke to
him about a lad for his store-(Mr. Easy
had already forgotten his promise)-Hiram
was recommended, and the man called to
see his mother.
"How much salary can you afford to
give him?" asked Mrs. Mayberry, after
learning all about the situation, and feeling
satisfied that her son ought to accept of it.
"Salary, ma'am?" returned the store-
keeper, in a tone of surprise. We never
give a boy any salary for the first year.
The knowledge that is acquired of business
is always considered a full compensation.
After the first year, if he likes us, and we
like him, we may give him seventy-five
or a hundred dollars."
Poor Mrs. Mayberry's countenance fell
I wouldn't think of his going out now,
if it were not in the hope of his earning


something," said she, in a disappointed
"How much did you expect him to
earn ?" was asked by the storekeeper.
"I didn't know exactly what to expect.
But I supposed that he might earn four or
five dollars a week."
Five dollars a week is all we pay our
porter, an able-bodied, industrious man,"
was returned. "If you wish your son to
become acquainted with mercantile busi-
ness, you must not expect him to earn
much for three or four years. At a trade,
you may receive for him barely a sufficien-
cy to board and clothe him, but nothing
This declaration so dampened the feel-
ings of the mother, that she could not re-
ply for some moments. At length she
If you will take my boy, with the un-
derstanding, that, in case I am not able to
support him, or hear of a situation where
a salary can be obtained, you will let him


leave your employment without hard feel-
ings, he shall go into your store at once."
To this the man consented, and Hiram
Mayberry went with him according to
agreement. A few weeks passed, and the
lad, liking both the business and his em-
ployer, his mother felt exceedingly anxious
for him to remain. But she sadly feared
that this could not be. Her little store
was just about exhausted, and the most
she had yet been able to earn by working
for the shops, was a dollar and a half a
week. This was not more than sufficient
to buy the plainest food for her little flock.
It would not pay rent, nor get clothing.
To meet the former, recourse was had to
the sale of her husband's small, select li-
brary. Careful mending kept the younger
children tolerably decent, and by altering
for him the clothes left by his father, she
was able to keep Hiram in a suitable con-
dition to appear at the store of his em-
Thus matters went on for several months,


Mrs. Mayberry working late and early.
The natural result was, a gradual failure
of strength. In the morning, when she
awoke, she would feel so languid and heavy,
that to rise required a strong effort; and
even after she was up, and attempted to re-
sume her labours, her trembling frame almost
refused to obey the dictates of her will. At
length nature gave way. One morning she
was so sick that she could not rise. Her
head throbbed with a dizzy, blinding pain
-her whole body ached, and her skin burn-
ed with fever. Hiram got something for
the children to eat, and then taking the
youngest, a little girl about two years old,
into the house of a neighbour, who had
showed them some good-will, asked her if
she would take care of his sister until he
returned home at dinner-time. This the
neighbour readily consented to do-promis-
ing, also, to call in frequently to see his
At dinner-time Hiram found his mother
quite ill. She was no better at night. For


three days the fever raged violently. Then,
under the careful treatment of their old
family physician, it was subdued. After
that she gradually recovered, but very
slowly. The physician said she must not
attempt again to work as she had done.
This injunction was scarcely necessary.
She had not the strength to do so.
"I don't see what you will do, Mrs.
Mayberry," a neighbour, who had often
aided her by kind advice, said, in reply to
the widow's statement of her unhappy con-
dition. "You cannot maintain these chil-
dren, certainly. And I don't see how, in
your present feeble state, you are going to
maintain yourself. There is but one thing
that I can advise, and that advice I give
with reluctance. It is to endeavour to get
two of your children into some orphan asy-
lum. The youngest you may be able to
keep with you. The oldest can support
himself at something or other."
The pale cheek of Mrs. Mayberry grew
paler at this proposition. She half sobbed,


caught her breath, and looked her adviser
with a strange, bewildered stare in the face.
"Oh no! I cannot do that. I cannot
be separated from my dear little children.
Who will care for them like a mother?"
It is hard, I know, Mrs. Mayberry. But
necessity is a stern ruler. You cannot keep
them with you-that is certain. You have
not the strength to provide them with even
the coarsest food. In an asylum, with a
kind matron, they will be better off than
under any other circumstances."
But Mrs. Mayberry shook her head.
"No-no-no," she replied-" I cannot
think of such a thing. I cannot be sepa-
rated from them. I shall soon be able to
work again-better able than before."
The neighbour, who felt deeply for her,
did not urge the matter. When Hiram re-
turned at dinner-time, his face had in it a
more animated expression than usual.
"Mother," said he, as soon as he came
in, I heard to-day that a boy was wanted
at the Gazette-office, who could write a


good hand. The wages are to be four dol-
lars a week."
You did!" Mrs. Mayberry said quickly,
her weak frame trembling, although she
struggled hard to be composed.
"Yes. And Mr. Easy is well acquainted
with the publisher, and could get me the
place, I am sure."
Then go and see him at once, Hiram.
If you can secure it, all will be well; if not,
your little brothers and sisters will have to
be separated, perhaps sent into an orphan
Mrs. Mayberry covered her face with her
hands and sobbed bitterly for some mo-
Hiram ate his frugal meal quickly, and
returned to the store, where he had to re-
main until his employer went home and
dined. On his return, he asked liberty to
be absent for half an hour, which was
granted. He then went to the counting-
house of Mr. Easy, and disturbed him as
has been seen. Approaching with a timid


step and a flushed brow, he said in a con-
fused and hurried manner-
Mr. Easy, there is a lad wanted at the
"Well?" returned Mr. Easy in no very
cordial tone.
"Mother thought you would be kind
enough to speak to Mr. G- for me."
Haven't you a place in a store?"
"Yes, sir. But I don't get any wages.
And at the Gazette-office they will pay four
dollars a week."
"But the knowledge of business to be
gained where you are will be worth a great
deal more than four dollars a week."
I know that, sir. But mother is not
able to board and clothe me. I must earn
"Oh ay, that's it. Very well, I'll see
about it for you."
When shall I call, sir?" asked Hiram.
"When? Oh, almost any time. Say to-
morrow or next day."
The lad departed, and Mr. Easy's head


fell back upon the chair, the impression
which had been made upon his mind pass-
ing away almost as quickly as writing upon
With anxious, trembling hearts did Mrs.
Mayberry and her son wait for the after-
noon of the succeeding day. On the suc-
cess of Mr. Easy's application rested all
their hopes. Neither she nor Hiram ate
over a few mouthfuls at dinner-time. The
latter hurried away, and returned to the
store, there to wait with trembling eager-
ness until his employer should come from
dinner, and he again be free to go and see
Mr. Easy.
To Mrs. Mayberry the afternoon passed
slowly. She had forgotten to tell her son
to return home immediately, if the applica-
tion should be successful. He did not come
back, and she had, consequently, to remain
in a state of anxious suspense until dark.
He came in at the usual hour. His de-
jected countenance told of disappoint-


"Did you see Mr. Easy ?" asked Mrs.
Mayberry in a low, troubled voice.
"Yes. But he hadn't been to the Ga-
zette-office. He said he had been very
busy. But that he would see about it soon."
Nothing more was said. The mother
and son, after sitting silently and pensive
during the evening, retired early to bed.
On the next day, urged on by his anxious
desire to get the situation of which he had
heard, Hiram again called at the counting-
room of Mr. Easy, his heart trembling with
hope and fear. There were two or three
men present. Mr. Easy cast upon him rather
an impatient look as he entered. His ap-
pearance had evidently annoyed the mer-
chant. Had Hiram consulted his feelings, he
would have retired at once. But there was
too much at stake. Gliding to a corner of
the room, he stood with his hat in his
hand, and a look of anxiety upon his face,
until Mr. Easy was disengaged. At length
the gentlemen with whom he was occupied
went away, and Mr. Easy turned toward


the boy. Hiram looked up earnestly in
his face.
"I have really been so much occupied,
my lad," said the merchant in a kind of
apologetic tone, "as to have entirely for-
gotten my promise to you. But I will see
about it. Come in again to-morrow."
Hiram made no answer, but turned with
a sigh toward the door. The keen disap-
pointment expressed in the boy's face,
and the touching quietness of his manner,
reached the feelings of Mr. Easy. He was
not a hard-hearted man, but selfishly indif-
rent to others. He could feel deeply enough
if he would permit himself to do so.
"Stop a minute," said he. And then
stood in a musing attitude for a moment
or two. "As you seem so anxious about
this matter," he added, "if you will wait
here a little while, I will step down and
see Mr. G- at once."
The boy's face brightened instantly. Mr.
Easy saw the effect of what he said, and it
made the task he was about entering upon


reluctantly a lighter one. Hiram waited
for nearly a quarter of an hour, so eager to
know the result that he could not compose
himself to sit down. The sound of Mr.
Easy's step at the door, at length made his
heart bound. The merchant entered. Hi-
ram looked into his face. One glance was
sufficient to dash every dearly cherished
hope to the ground.
"I am sorry," said Mr. Easy, "but the
place was filled this morning. I was a
little too late."
The boy was unable to control his feel-
ings. The disappointment was too great.
Tears gushed from his eyes as he turned
away and left the counting-room without
I'm afraid I've done wrong," said Mr.
Easy to himself, as he stood in a musing
attitude, by his desk, about five minutes
after Hiram had left. If I had seen about
the situation when he first called upon me,
I might have secured it for him. But it's
too late now."


After saying this, the merchant placed
his thumbs in the armholes of his waist-
coat, and commenced walking the floor of
his counting-room, backwards and forwards.
He could not get out of his mind the image
of the boy as he turned from him in tears,
nor drive away thoughts of the friend's
widow whom he had neglected. This state
of mind continued all the afternoon. Its na-
tural effect was to cause him to cast about
in his mind for some way of getting em-
ployment for Hiram that would yield imme-
diate returns. But nothing presented itself.
"I wonder if I couldn't make room for
him here ?" he at length said. "He looks
like a bright boy. I lnow Mr. is high-
ly pleased with him. He spoke of getting
four dollars a week. That's a good deal to
give to a mere lad. But, I suppose I might
make him worth that to me. And now I
begin to think seriously about the matter,
I believe I cannot keep a clear conscience
and any longer remain indifferent to the
welfare of my old friend's widow and chil-


dren. I must look after them a little more
closely than I have heretofore done."
This resolution relieved the mind of Mr.
Easy a good deal.
When Hiram left the counting-room of
the merchant, his spirits were crushed to
the very earth. He found his way back,
how he hardly knew, to his place of busi-
ness, and mechanically performed the tasks
allotted him until evening. Then he re-
turned home, reluctant to meet his mother,
and yet anxious to relieve her state of sus-
pense, even if in doing so he should dash
a last hope from her heart. When he
came in, Mrs. Mayberry lifted her eyes to his
inquiringly; but dropped them instantly-
she needed no words to tell her that he
had suffered a bitter disappointment.
"You did not get the place?" she at
length said, with forced composure.
No-it was taken this morning. Mr.
Easy promised to see about it. But he
didn't do so. When he went this after-
noon, it was too late."


Hiram said this with a trembling voice
and lips that quivered.
"Thy will be done!" murmured the
widow, lifting her eyes upward. If these
tender ones are to be taken from their mo-
ther's fold, oh! do thou temper for them
the piercing blast, and be their shelter
amid the raging tempests."
A tap at the door brought back the
thoughts of Mrs. Mayberry. A brief struggle
with her feelings enabled her to overcome
them in time to receive a visitor with com-
posure. It was the merchant.
"Mr. Easy !" she said in surprise.
Mrs. Mayberry, how do you do ?" There
was some restraint and embarrassment in
his manner. He was conscious of having
neglected the widow of his friend, before
he came. The humble condition in which
he found her quickened that consciousness
into a sting.
I'm sorry, madam," he said, after he had
become seated and made a few inquiries,
"that I did not get the place for your son.


In fact, I am to blame in the matter. But
I have been thinking since that he would
suit me exactly, and, if you have no objec-
tions, I will take him and pay him a salary
of two hundred dollars for the first year."
Mrs. Mayberry tried to reply, but her
feelings were too much excited by this
sudden and unlooked-for proposal to allow
her to speak for some moments. Even
then her assent was made with tears
glistening on her cheeks. Arrangements
were quickly made for the transfer of Hi-
ram from the store where he had been en-
gaged, to the counting-room of Mr. Easy.
The salary he received was just enough to
enable Mrs. Mayberry, with what she her-
self earned, to keep her little ones together,
until Hiram, who proved a valuable assist-
ant in Mr. Easy's business, could command
a larger salary, and render her more im-
portant aid.


" rHAT'S a smart little fellow of yours,"
Said a gentleman named Winslow to
a labouring-man, who was called in, occa-
sionally, to do work about his store. "Does
he go to school ?"
Not now, sir," replied the poor man.
"Why not, Davis? He looks like a
bright lad."
"He's got good parts, sir," returned the
father, but"--
"But what?" asked the gentleman, see-
ing that the man hesitated.
"Times are rather hard now, sir, and I
have a large family. It's about as much
as I can do to keep hunger and cold away.

(3) Page 96.


Ned reads very well, writes a tolerable fair
hand, considering all things, and can figure
a little. And that's about all I can do for
him. The other children are coming for-
ward, and I reckon he will have to go to a
trade middling soon."
"How old is Ned?" inquired Mr. Wins-
He's turned of eleven."
"You won't put him to a trade before
he's thirteen or fourteen ?"
"Can't keep him at home idling all that
time, Mr. Winslow. It would be his ruin-
ation. It's young to go out from home, I
know, to rough it and tough it among
strangers"-there was a slight unsteadiness
in the poor man's voice-" but it's better
than doing nothing."
Ned ought to go to school a year or two
longer, Davis," said Mr. Winslow, with some
interest in his manner. "And as you are
not able to pay the quarter-bills, I guess I
will have to do it. What say you? If I
pay for Ned's schooling, can you keep


him at home some two or three years
"I didn't expect that of you, Mr. Wins-
low," said the poor man, and his voice now
trembled. He uncovered his head as he
spoke, almost reverently. "You a'n't
bound to pay for schooling my boy. Ah,
But you haven't answered my question,
Davis. What say you ?"
"Oh sir, if you are really in earnest ?"
"I am in earnest. Ned ought to go to
school. If you can keep him home a few
years longer, I will pay for his education
during the time. Ned"-Mr. Winslow
spoke to the boy-" what say you ? Would
you like to go to school again ?"
Yes, indeed, sir," quickly answered the
boy, while his bright young face was lit up
with a gleam of intelligence.
"Then you shall go, my fine fellow.
There's the right kind of stuff in you, or
I'm mistaken. We'll give you a trial, at
any rate."


Mr. Winslow was as good as his word.
Ned was immediately entered at an excellent
school. The boy, young as he was, appre-
ciated the kind act of his benefactor, and
resolved to profit by it to the full extent.
I made an investment of ten dollars to-
day," said Mr. Winslow, half-jestingly, to a
mercantile friend, some three months after
the occurrence just related took place, "and
here's the certificate."
He held up a small slip of paper as he
"Ten dollars! A large operation! In
what fund?"
"A charity fund."
"Oh!" And the friend shrugged his
shoulders. "Don't do much in that way
myself. No great faith in the security.
What dividend do you expect to receive ?"
"Don't know. Rather think it will be
Better take some more of the stock, if
you think it so good. There is plenty in
market to be bought at less than par."
H 2


Mr. Winslow smiled, and said that in all
probability he would invest a few more
small sums in the same way, and see how
it would turn out.
The little piece of paper which he plea-
santly called a certificate of stock, was the
first quarter-bill he had paid for Ned's
schooling. For four years these bills were
regularly paid; and then Ned, who had
well improved the opportunities so gene-
rously afforded him, was taken, on the re-
commendation of Mr. Winslow, into a large
importing house. He was at the time in his
sixteenth year. Before the lad could en-
ter upon this employment, however, Mr.
Winslow had to make another investment
in his charity fund. Ned's father was too
poor to give him an outfit of clothing such
as was required in the new position to
which he was to be elevated; knowing this,
the generous merchant came forward again
and furnished the needful supply.
As no wages were received by Ned for
the first two years, Mr. Winslow continued


to buy his clothing, while his father still
gave him his board. On reaching the age
of eighteen, Ned's employers, who were
much pleased with his industry, intelli-
gence, and attention to business, put him
on a salary of three hundred dollars. This
made him at once independent. He could
pay his own boarding and find his own
clothes, and proud did he feel on the day
when advanced to so desirable, a position.
How comes on your investment?" asked
Mr. Winslow's mercantile friend about this
time. He spoke jestingly.
"It promises very well," was the smil-
ing reply.
"It is rising in the market, then ?"
Any dividends yet ?"
"Oh, certainly. Large dividends."
"Ah! You surprise me. What kind
of dividends ?"
More than a hundred per cent."
"Indeed! Not in money ?"
Oh no. But in something better than


money. The satisfaction that flows from
an act of benevolence wisely done."
Oh, that's all." The friend spoke with
ill-concealed contempt.
"Don't you call that something ?" asked
Mr. Winslow.
"It's entirely too unsubstantial for me,"
replied the other. "I go in for returns of
a more tangible character. Those you
speak of won't pay my notes."
Mr. Winslow smiled, and bade his friend
He knows nothing," said he to himself,
as he mused on the subject, "of the plea-
sure of doing good; and the loss is all on
his side. If we have the ability to secure
investments of this kind, they are among
the best we can make; and all are able to
put at least some money in the fund of
good works, let it be ever so small an
amount. Have I suffered the abridgment
of a single comfort by what I have done ?
No. Have I gained in pleasant thoughts
and feelings by the act ? Largely. It has


been a source of perennial enjoyment. I
would not have believed that, at so small
a cost, I could have secured so much plea-
sure. And how great the good that may
flow from what I have done! Instead of
a mere day-labourer, whose work in the
world goes not beyond the handling of
boxes, bales, and barrels, or the manufac-
ture of some article in common use, Ed-
ward Davis, advanced by education, takes
a position of more extended usefulness, and
by his higher ability and more intelligent
action in society, will be able, if he rightly
use the power in his hands, to advance the
world's onward movement in a most im-
portant degree."
Thus thought Mr. Winslow, and his heart
grew warm within him. Time proved that
he had not erred in affording the lad an
opportunity for obtaining a good education.
His quick mind acquired, in the position
in which he was placed, accurate ideas of
business, and industry and force of charac-
ter made these ideas thoroughly practical.


Every year his employers advanced his
salary, and, on attaining his majority, it
was further advanced to the sum of one
thousand dollars per annum. With every
increase the young man had devoted a
larger and larger proportion of his income
to improving the condition of his father's
family, and when it was raised to the sum
last mentioned, he took a neat, comfortable
new house, much larger than the family
had before lived in, and paid the whole
rent himself. Moreover, through his ac-
quaintance and influence, he was able to
get a place for his father at lighter em-
ployment than he had heretofore been
engaged in, and at a higher rate of compen-
"Any more dividends on your charity
investment?" said Mr. Winslow's friend,
about this time. He spoke with the old
manner, and from the old feelings.
"Yes. Got a dividend to-day. The
largest yet received," replied the merchant,


Did you? Hope it does you a great
deal of good."
I realize your wish, my friend. It is
doing me a great deal of good," returned
Mr. Winslow.
"No cash, I presume ?"
"Something far better. Let me explain."
"Do so, if you please."
"You know the particulars of this in-
vestment?" said Mr. Winslow.
His friend shook his head, and re-
"No. The fact is, I never felt interest
enough in the matter to inquire about par-
"Oh, well, then, I must give you a
little history.
"You know old .Davis, who has been
working about our store for the last ten
or fifteen years ?"
"My investment was in the education
of his son."
"Indeed !"


His father took him from school when
he was only eleven years old, because he
could not afford to send him any longer,
and was about putting the little fellow out
to learn a trade. Something interested me
in the child, who was a bright lad, and act-
ing from a good impulse that came over
me at the moment, I proposed to his father
to send him to school for three or four years,
if he would board and clothe him during
the time. To this he readily agreed. So
I paid for Ned's schooling until he was in
his sixteenth year, and then got him into
Webb & Waldron's store, where he has been
ever since."
"Webb & Waldron's!" said the friend,
evincing some surprise. I know all their
clerks very well, for we do a great deal of
business with them. Which is the son of
old Mr. Davis ?"
The one they call Edward."
Not that tall, fine-looking young man
-their leading salesman ?"
"The same."

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