Citation
The strawberry girl, or, How to rise in the world

Material Information

Title:
The strawberry girl, or, How to rise in the world
Series Title:
Uncle Frank's home stories
Portion of title:
How to rise in the world
Creator:
Woodworth, Francis C ( Francis Channing ), 1812-1859
Scribner, Charles, 1821-1871 ( Publisher )
Benedict, Charles W ( Printer )
Roberts, William, b. ca. 1829 ( Engraver )
Howland, William ( Engraver )
Place of Publication:
New York
Publisher:
Charles Scribner
Manufacturer:
C.W. Benedict, Stereotyper and Printer
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:
1851
Language:
English
Physical Description:
174 p., <1> leaf of plates : ill. (some col.) ; 15 cm.

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Girls -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Poverty -- Juvenile fiction ( lcsh )
Embossed cloth bindings (Binding) -- 1852 ( rbbin )
Bldn -- 1852
Genre:
Embossed cloth bindings (Binding) ( rbbin )
novel ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
United States -- New York -- New York
Target Audience:
juvenile ( marctarget )

Notes

General Note:
Added title page, engraved.
General Note:
Some illustrations engraved by W. Roberts and Howland.
Funding:
Brittle Books Program
Statement of Responsibility:
by Uncle Frank.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
This item is presumed to be in the public domain. The University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries respect the intellectual property rights of others and do not claim any copyright interest in this item. Users of this work have responsibility for determining copyright status prior to reusing, publishing or reproducing this item for purposes other than what is allowed by fair use or other copyright exemptions. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions may require permission of the copyright holder. The Smathers Libraries would like to learn more about this item and invite individuals or organizations to contact The Department of Special and Area Studies Collections (special@uflib.ufl.edu) with any additional information they can provide.
Resource Identifier:
024000990 ( ALEPH )
08837115 ( OCLC )
ALJ0574 ( NOTIS )

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See p. 47

AMY AND HER BROTHER.







THE

STRAWBERRY GIRL;
HOW TO RISE IN THE WORLD.
With Fllustrations.

BY UNCLE FRANK,

AUTHOR oF THE “WILLOW LANE sTORIES,”? EtG.



NEW YORK:
CHARLES SCRIBNER, 145 NASSAU STREET.
1852.



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, by
CHARLES SCRIBNER,

In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the United States for
the Southern District ot New York.



C. W. BENEDICT,
Stereotyrer ann Parnven,
201 William at., N. Y.



CONTENTS.

race
INTRODUCTION, . . «» © © «© oe e© @

CASTLE-BUILDING, . . . . . . . 14
THE CASTLE-BUILDERS, . . ° ° e - 19
THE FLOWER OF THE FAMILY, ° . . ° 30
THE FALL OF THE AIR-CASTLES, « e * - 45
HOPES AND DISAPPOINTMENTS, . . . . 59
GLIMMERINGS OF SUNSHINE, . ° ° ° - 7
THAT STRAWBERRY PATCH, . ° ° ° ° 101

A SECRET DISCOVERED, . . . . . e 110



Vi CONTENTS.

AN UNEXPECTED VISITOR, . 7.
CHANGES AT ROSE COTTAGE, . «oe
AMY, AS A GOVERNESS, ° . .
AN UNLOOKED-FOR ANSWER, . * .

4 NUT FOR MRS. SIMPKINS, . . .

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

AMY ROSE AND HER BROTHER, e e
VIGNETTE TITLE-PAGE, . . e .
THE EVENING PRAYER, . . . .

WATCHING FOR THE SHIP, . . .
“WHAT MOXSTROUS sTITCHES!” .
THE SERENADERS, . . . .

THE PROFESSOR AND THE GOVERNESS, .

THE CLASS IN BOTANY, . . . .

PAGE

. 124
° . 137
° 149
. « 162
° 165

Frontispiece
. . 1
. 26
» « 54
. 74
. » 99
. 156



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL

CHAPTER I.
INTRODUCTION.

You will find in this book, little friend,
a tale of every-day life—nothing more
and nothing less. The incidents in it
may some of them be rather remarkable ;
yet I must inform you at the outset, that
they are not generally such as to startle,
and astonish, and bewilder you. I give



8 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

them to you in their native simplicity—
almost in their unpretending homespun
costume.

If you should take a fancy, however,
that the book is dull, because it has to
do, for the most part, with people, and
facts, and scenes, such as we all fre-
quently meet with, you would be some-
what mistaken, I think. If you find the
book dull—and I can’t undertake to pro-
mise you that you will not, though I cer-
tainly hope you will find it quite the re-
verse—its dullness will not be owing to
a want of interest in the persons and
things I talk about. They are interest-
ing enough. You can’t find better tim



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 9

ber from which to frame a story, ora
series of stories, that will entertain and
please everybody, than you can right
around you, in the very neighborhood
where you live. I have often thought,
that the farther one goes away from
home to gather his stories, the more dry
the stories seem to children; and I sup-
pose that is the reason why all the boys
and girls like better to get hold of a book
that was written in their own country,
than one that was written by somebody
on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.
So that, if you should take a fancy that
my book is a little dull—which, as I said
before, I hope will not be the case—you



10 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

must charge the dullness not to the rank
and condition of the persons I write
about, nor to the commonness of the inci-
dents which are related, but to another
cause, less creditable, perhaps, to the
author.

You cannot read the history of any in-
dividual—no matter whether he is rich
or poor, whether he moves in high cir-
cles or in low circles, whether he drives
his carriage or gets his scanty living by
hard labor with his hands, whether he
has had the benefit of schools and col-
leges or has been obliged to pick up his
education by the wayside—you cannot
carefully read the history of any one,



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. il

without getting some hints from it that
will be useful to you in some way or
other ; and this sketch of the Strawberry
Girl would be a very poor one indeed,
if it did not furnish such-hints. I think
you will discover some as you pass along,
that may prove of service to you.

Let me point out two or three truths
which the history itself seems to bring
out, and which you will do well to note
down in the memorandum book of your
mind. J think you will find here these
valuable lessons, if you don’t discover
any others:

That happiness is not confined to any
station in life.



12 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

That it is not the result of outward cir-
cumstances, so much as of the disposition
of one’s own mind.

That honesty, principle, faithfulness,
industry, virtue, religion, bring with them
their own rewards; and that if one de-
sires to rise in the world, he cannot find
so sure a ladder as one made of such
rounds as these.

That it is a useless waste of time to
fret and find fault with our condition.

That a contented spirit is a gem more
to be coveted than gold or diamonds.

That kindness, and gentleness, and
love, can win their way to almost any
heart.



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 13

That it is no disgrace to anybody to be
poor.

That it is both foolish and wicked to
be ashamed of the lot in which God has
placed us.

That wealth does not always secure a
well-cultivated mind; and that the ab-
sence of wealth does not always imply a
want either of education or refinement.



CHAPTER II.
CASTLE-BUILDING.

‘‘Ou, Eddy !’’ said little Bessie Rose,
running into the room where her brother
and sister were playing, ‘father is
coming home next week. How glad I
shall be to see him.”

‘‘Who said so, sister?’ asked Amy,
who was older than Bessie, and not quite
so extravagant in her hopes and expecta-
tions ; ‘* who told you so, dear ?”



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 15

*‘ Grandfather told me,”’ said Bessie.

s¢ But how does he know, I wonder ?”

‘¢Oh, I don’t know that. But he said
he was almost sure papa would come
home next week.”

‘‘Is he here now ?”

‘*No, he has gone down to the sea-
shore.”’

How light-hearted children are; and
how easily their bosoms are filled with
hope. Both these girls clapped their
hands, and danced about the room, with
almost as much joy as they would have
felt if their father had actually stepped
into the room where they were. Chil-
dren, who have seen but little of the



16 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

world, and have not often been painfully
disappointed, do not allow their happi-
ness to be marred by doubts and fears,
like those who are older.

‘*T wonder what papa will bring me ?”
said Bessie. ‘A string of coral beads, I
guess.”

«‘ And I guess he will bring me ever
so many shells—all sorts of pretty
shells,”’ said Amy, ‘and some East In-
dia flower seeds.”

«« And a monkey, and a music box, and
a doll that winks with its eyes, like Kate
Merrill’s,”’ little Bessie rattled on, evi-
dently without having heard her sister,
and meaning to join the string containing



THE STRAWEERRY CIRL. 17

the three last mentioned articles to the
one with the coral beads.”

Amy laughed heartily at the expense
of the poor monkey, recommending her
sister to teach him how to dance and
keep time to the tunes played by the
music box.

Edwin—the gentle one, the pet of the
sisters—was not so wild in his notions.
Eddy was a sickly boy. He had been a
delicate child from his birth. There was
always more seriousness about him than
about either of the other children. Be-
sides, he never thought much of his own
happiness. It was enough for hin, if he
could see others happy, and especially



18 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

his sisters. It made him happy, to see
them enjoy themselves. As for him, he
said, he was very rich, and if his father
did not buy anything for him, he should
not feel bad about it.

‘You rich!’ exclaimed both of the
girls, laughing.

‘“« Yes,”’ said Eddy.

‘¢ But how is that?” asked Amy.

_“T’ve got two of the best sisters in the

world,” said Eddy. ‘I’m rich enough.
When papa comes home, I don’t know
but I shall be too rich.”

And so they went on; building castles
in the air.



CHAPTER III.
THE CASTLE-BUILDERS.

I must give you a more definite ac-
count of these three children and their
parents. As you have no doubt guessed,
Mr. Rose, their father, is a sailor. He
followed the sea, for most of the time,
ever since he was twelve years old. It
was a sad day, to be sure, when, for the
first time after his marriage and the birth
of his daughter Amy, he tore himself



20 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

away from his humble dwelling, and
went on board the ship that was to take
him thousands of miles from his native
land. It was a sad day, and the tears
flowed freely down his weather-beaten
cheeks, as he uttered his farewell bless-
ing. But he was brought up to follow
the sea. His father was a sailor. So
were all his brothers. They knew very
little about work on land; and painful as
it was to be so long separated from his
family, he saw no other way of getting a
living than to go to sea.

Matthew Rose was a poor man. But
he managed to support his family com-
fortably. Their wants were not so great



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 21

as those of some families I know of. If
they had expected a thousand dollars a
year, they would have been greatly dis-
appointed. If they had regarded that
sum as necessary to a comfortable living,
they would have had a miserable time of
it. But Mrs. Rose had learned two
valuable arts: that of living within her
means, and that of being tolerably con-
tented with the temporal things that fell
to her share. She wasa Christian. So
was her husband. They were Christians
in the highest sense of the teym. Their,
religion had soul in it. It was some-
thing more than a bundle of dry bones.
They carried their religion into every



22 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

department of life; and they taught its
principles carefully to their children.
The result was that the sailor’s cottage
was always a happy spot. Mr. Rose
himself, though so often and so long
separated from those he loved most
fondly, was a happy man ; for

“ He is the happy man, whose life e’en now
Shows somewhat of the happier life to come.”

Mr. Rose’s cottage was situated within
a mile or two of the sea-shore, in the
State of New Jersey. There was not
much of a village where he lived. Peo-
ple were rather scarce in that region.
To tell the truth, the land in that part of



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 23

the country is not the best in the world.
It is poor enough, to tell the whole truth.
Still, it is a pleasant spot. It is pleasant
to have a fine beach of white sand near
you; to be able to wander for miles
along that beach, picking up shells; to
play with the saucy waves, as they dash
against the shore; to gaze upon the vast
ocean, when it is lashed into foam, and
the surf is high; to listen to the sound
of the waves, always in motion, always
uttering its strange murmurs, even when
its bosom seems at rest.

The government and early training of
the children fell almost entirely to the
lot of the mother ; and she seems to have



24 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

possessed no small share of tact in their
management. As soon as they could
speak, they were taught the language of
prayer and praise. Before they could
speak plain, this well-known hymn was
repeated by each one of them, as they
retired fur the night :

“ Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.”

At the time when the conversation re-
lated in the preceding chapter took place,
there were two children—Amy and Bes-
sie. Eddy—the gentle little Eddy, had
gone to his rest. These children, with





THE EVENING PRAYER,



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 27

the mother and grandfather Rose, com-
prised the whole family, when Mr. Rose
was away at sea. Some of you will
wonder how they got along without any
servant. But they did get along without
any, in some way or another. Mrs. Rose
had a habit of helping herself a good
deal; and the children, at the time I am
speaking of, did not need much helping.
They, too, had learned to help them-
selves.

You will inquire, perhaps, what sort
of education the children had. There
was a school about a mile from Mr.
Rose’s, and the two eldest, Amy and
Bessie, had for some years been accus-



28 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

tomed to walk there and back, during
the time when the school was kept, al-
most every day. And they had been
good scholars, too. There were none in
the school who were more faithful in
their studies than they. There were
none of their age, more frequently at the
head of the spelling class than they were.
None more readily did the hard sums or
answered more correctly the questions
that were put to them out of Morse’s
Geography. I may go farther, and say
that Amy was generally, if not always
reckoned among the very best scholars
in school.

As it is about Amy that my story



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. . 29

principally relates, you will not. think I
slight Bessie, if I have less to do with
her than with her sister; though I do
not mean to neglect her altogether, by
any means.

&
SK
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ay

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CHAPTER IV.
THE FLOWER OF THE FAMILY.

Amy Ross was the flower of the family.
No one could help seeing that. It was
astonishing how readily she learned, and
it was almost equally astonishing, to some
people, where she got hold of sundry rare
morsels of knowledge, not in very com-
mon use in the vicinity of Rose cottage.
The school which she attended, in com-
mon with her sister, was certainly not



TIE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 31

among the best. It was, indeed, only
tolerable. The very commonest branches
merely were all that any of the instruc-
tors attempted to teach; and some of
them made bungling work with even
these branches.

But with all these disadvantages, Amy
managed, first and last, by hook or by
crook, to learn more than many girls
who are sent to the best schools in the
country.

I will give you one specimen of the
way in which she gleaned sheaves of
valuable knowledge, here and _ there.
Botany was not taught at the school
which she attended. It was quite as



32 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

much as those teachers could do to carry
their pupils safely through the somewhat
perilous seas of grammar, geography, and
arithmetic. Well, Amy was exceedingly
fond of flowers. She always wanted to
become acquainted with every flower she
saw. The woods, and swamps, and
meadows, in the vicinity of her home,
abounded with flowers, many of which
were lovely in the extreme. It isa great
mistake, little girl, to suppose that all
the beautiful flowers grow in the gardens,
and have been adopted from some far-
off country. It is a great mistake.
Some of the loveliest flowers I ever saw
in my life—some of the loveliest, I do



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 33

believe, that the sun ever shone upon—
are natives of our northern and middle
states. The hills and vales, the woods
and meadows of New Jersey, the state in
which Amy lived, can boast of flowers as
fair as most of those which grace our gar-
dens and green-houses.

Our young friend, unlike many others
who live in the country, and who have
the same opportunities of becoming ac-
quainted with the beauties of the coun-
try, became, quite early in life, an ad-
mirer of the wild flowers. She loved to
look in their beautiful faces, and got to
be very intimate with them, long before
she knew many of their names, or the



34 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

different families to which they be-
longed.

In the spring of the year, as soon as
the snow left the ground, Amy might
have been seen in the woods, carefully
removing the dry leaves, to see if she
could find the trailing arbutus; and when
she did find it, she was as much delighted,
IT am sure, as if she had discovered a
small mine of gold. Some will wonder
at this. But I do not wonder at all.
The trailing arbutus is one of the love-
liest little creatures that ever grew. It
used to make the blood course a great
deal more swiftly in my veins, in the
days of my boyhood, when, quite as soon



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 35

as the warm sun had taken off the earth’s
white mantle, and sometimes even before
that, I found a cluster of these flowers,
with an almost crimson blush on their
cheeks.

The trailing arbutus, and many of its
companions, Amy was in the habit of in-
troducing from their wild haunts into the
garden, where she contrived to make
them quite at home. Among these
flowers were the wind anemone, sev-
eral species of the violet, the liverleaf,
(not liverwort, as many people call the
plant, confounding it with a very differ-
ent thing growing on the damp stones of
old wells) the spring beauty, the ladies’



36 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

slipper, the adder’s tongue, the twin
flower, the honeysuckle, the cardinal
flower, the arethusa, and a good many
more besides.

One day, during the summer, she was
walking in the pine woods, with her
brother, when she discovered a rare
flower, of great beauty. I don’t know
whether you have ever seen it or not.
Its haunts are dense woods, in rather
sandy soils. It is sometimes called the
grass pink, I believe; though that name
does not distinguish it from a common
exotic flower in the garden. The botani-
cal name of the plant in the Cymbidium
Pulchellum. I have heard Amy say that



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 37

she never had been more delighted with
any discovery in her life than she was
when she first found, each in its native
haunt, the grass pink and the purple
wake robin.

From the discovery of the grass pink
dates a new era in the history of Amy
Rose. She transplanted it to her garden,
and it bloomed there, by the side of the
blue violet and the anemone.

It was not many days after the dis-
covery of that flower, that a stranger,
who happened to be travelling that way,
called at Mr. Rose’s house, to rest him-
self a little while—for it was a very hot

day—and to refresh himself with a glass
3



‘38 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

of water. This gentleman proved to be
a professor in one of the most celebrated
colleges in the country, and was as much
at home in botany as if he had made it
his study for a lifetime. The door lead-
ing to the garden standing open, his at-
tention was at once directed to Amy’s
wild flowers, and he went out to see
them.

“‘ Whose work is this ?’’ he inquired,
with astonishment.

Amy modestly informed him that she
had taken a fancy to the flowers, as she
had seen them in their native haunts,
and so had invited them to come and
live with her. |



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 39

‘¢ But where did you find this flower,
my dear?” he asked, pointing to the
grass pink.

‘‘In the pine woods, yonder,” Amy
said.

‘‘ Are there any more in those woods ?”’

Amy did not know. This one was all
she had found.

‘‘ My dear,”’ said the professor, ‘ will
you walk over to the pine woods with
me, and show me where you found it?”

‘Yes, sir,’ Amy said, ‘‘if my mother
is willing.”

Her mother, being appealed to, was
willing, and Amy and the professor went
off in pursuit of the rare flower. Amy



40 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

readily led the way to the spot where she
discovered her specimen; but it was a
long time before they found another.
They did find one, however, and I think
several, before they left the woods.

The professor told Amy the name of
the flower, and said that, in the part of
the country where he resided, it was not
found at all. On their way to the cot-
tage of Mr. Rose (which J have a good
mind to call the Rose Cottage, though
it was known by no such poetical name
in those days) and after their return, the
kind-hearted man taught Amy a great
deal about her friends, the flowers.

Some girls would have been ashamed to —



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. Al

confess their ignorance about the whole
subject of botany. But Amy did not be-
long to that class. She was always glad
of any opportunity to add to her stock of
knowledge, and she had no desire to have
any one regard her in any other than her
true light. ruth was one of the fea-
tures most strongly marked in her char-
acter. I never knew a person whose
whole soul shone out more clearly and
artlessly in her every-day life.

That conversation with Mr. White—
for that was the name of the professor—
was the foundation of Amy’s knowledge
of botany. When the professor took his
leave, he thanked her politely for her



42 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

kindness in consenting to be his pilot to
the pine woods. And he did more than
that, too. He had not adopted the
notion which some people, strangely
enough, seem to have stumbled upon,
that civility and politeness are thrown
away, when bestowed upon those in the
humbler ranks of life. He expressed
himself as highly pleased to find Amy so
fond of the wild flowers, and hoped she
would be able to become better acquaint-
ed with them. ‘To aid her in extending
this acquaintance, he presented her with
a book on botany, which she afterward
pored over, as if it contained directions
for finding the philosopher’s stone which



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 43

people used foolishly to hunt after in
former times—a stone which it was
thought would change everything it
touched into the purest gold. By the
aid of this bouk, and with the very little
help she obtained, once in a great while,
from a minister who lived some twelve
or fifteen miles from her father’s, she
succeeded in becoming, before she was
eighteen years of age, one of the best
botanists in that section of the state.
Botany became, from the date of her
first interview with the professor, one of
her pleasantest amusements during the
summer months. She spent hours and
hours rambling through all the forests



44 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

and meadows for miles around Rose Cot-
tage, seeking the wild flowers.

I have mentioned only one of the
sheaves of knowledge she gathered as
she went along through the field of early
youth, not because she did not glean
others—for she did—but because the
gleaning of this one had a very close
connection, as you will see, by and by,
with some of the most important inci-
dents in her life.



CHAPTER V.
THE FALL OF THE AIR-CASTLES.

I am getting along too fast with my
story. i must go backa little. You re-
collect the conversation of the children
in Rose Cottage about the expected re-
turn of their father. That was in the
early autumn, I think. What reason
Grandfather Rose had for hoping that
the ship in which his son sailed would
return so soon, I do not know. But I



46 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

know that such was his hope, and I know,
too, that the time came and passed, with-
out any tidings of the arrival of the ship.
She was what is called an East India
ship, that is, she was engaged in trading
with the East Indies. Days, weeks, and
even months passed, and still there were
no tidings of the vessel.

In the meantime, sorrow came into
the little cottage in another form, and no
one of the family felt it so keenly as our
friend. Amy. In all the rambles that
Amy took after flowers—and she took a
great many after the professor’s visit—
she was always accompanied by her
brother Edwin, who loved his sister as he



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 47

did his own soul, and who would do any-
thing to add to her happiness. But the
time came, when that brother and sister
were called to separate until the judg-
ment day. Poor Eddy! MHe had always
a frail, delicate frame. The seeds of
disease early sprang up in his system;
and he faded away, from year to year,
until it became evident that this cherished
flower must perish.

One day, in autumn, Amy and her
brother rambled into the meadow, to see
if they could find the beautiful fringed
gentian, which grew by the side of the
little brook. The meadow was but a
short distance from the cottage. But



48 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

Eddy was tired with the walk, and they
both sat down under the shade of a ven-
erable oak, where they talked for a long
time.

‘‘Dear sister,” said Eddy, do you see
how the leaves on this tree are withering
and falling off?’

‘Yes, dear,” said Amy, ‘and how
beautiful they are when they are ready
to fall.”

‘“‘ They are beautiful,” said Eddy. “I
love the fall of the year. How pretty
the woods are now. I think I never saw
them so fine before.”’

And they were both silent for a while.
Edwin, who had seated himself close to



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 49

his sister, and had twined his slender arm
around her neck, spoke first, and said,

«‘ Amy, dear, what will you do when
Eddy leaves you ?”

‘«‘T hope you will not leave me,” said
Amy.

‘s But I must go,” said Eddy.

«¢ Why must you go?”

‘‘ Because my heavenly Father has
sent for me.”’

‘‘Oh, don’t say so, dear brother. I
cannot bear to hear you talk so. I hope
you will stay with us a long time yet.”

«‘No, no, Amy. I shall die before
these leaves have all fallen from the
trees. I shall never go with you to the



50 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

pine woods again. [ shall die. I know
I am going to die. Don’t cry so. I am
willing to die. I hope my sins are for-
given. I believe I shall go to heaven.”’

Amy could say no more. Something
told her that Edwin was right. That
truth, when it burst upon her, caused her
the heaviest sorrow she had ever felt.

Edwin was right. That was the last
visit he ever made with his sister to the
haunts of the wild flowers. He died in
a few brief weeks, and his gentle spirit
went to the God who gave it.

But to return to the East India ship.
No tidings were heard from her; and, at
length, hope began to give place to anx-



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 51

iety, and anxiety to fear. At length,
everybody, almost, gave up the East
India ship as lost. I say almost every-
body. The wife and father had not
given her up. They hoped against
hope. So did the children. How hard
it is to give up, as utterly lost, those
whom we love. How carefully and
breathlessly we watch over a sick child,
even after the doctor has pronounced
those cruel words, ‘“‘He must die.’
How we notice every change in his coun-
tenance, every variation in the ebbing
tide of life, every symptom of the dis-
ease whith is gradually consuming the
form of our darling child. We see not



52 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

the stealthy approach of the messenger
of death. We hear not the sound of his
footsteps. What brings only despair to
others, brings hope to us. He cannot
die—so it seems to our loving hearts.
My mother died when I was quite
young, and she took my heart with her
to heaven. She was the victim of a
wasting disease, which did its work
slowly and almost imperceptibly. For
months—for years, I might say, per-
haps—her frame, strong at the first, was
steadily yielding to the attack of that de-
ceitful malady. I loved her with all the
strength of my young heart. They told
me, at length, that she must die. But I



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 53

could not credit them. Her death did
not seem possible. She could not die, I
thought. I loved her too well for that.
She could not leave me for her long
home. She could not go away, and
never return again to my embrace.
Even during that long, long night, after
I had kissed those pale lips for the last
time, and had heard the last blessing that
was to fall from them, I could not be-
lieve that she would die, and that we
should see her dear face no more.

So watched, and waited, and hoped,
the Rose family for the ship which con-
tained the object of their fondest love.
Often would the old gentleman, some-



54 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

times with Amy for his companion, but
oftener alone, wend his’ way to the sea-
shore, and sit there for hours, gazing out
into the wide ocean, watching the in-
ward bound vessels that happened to
come near the coast, in the hope, the
vain hope, that one of them would prove
to be the East India ship. But her fair
form was never seen on that coast again.
She was a proud ship, and many a good
sailor had been heard to say that there
was not a safer vessel afloat than the old
N. But she was not a match for
the waves, when the wind had driven
them to madness. Though no tidings
of her ever reached the ears of those who





Wm

+

A. WATCHING FOR. THE SHIP. ¥





THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 57

were most interested in her safety, there
is no doubt that she was dashed to pieces,
and that all on board of her were lost.
The truth, the whole truth, when it
came home to the minds of the humble
family that occupied the Rose Cottage,
struck a terrible blow there. It seemed
to them, for a while, as if all their hopes
were wrecked with the vessel. They
saw, they could not help seeing, that the
loss they had sustained could not easily
be made up. It gave a keener pang to
their grief, when they reflected that they
were left, apparently, with very scanty
means of living. They knew, however,
which way to turn for support. They



58 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

went to God in their distress. They
went to him, as children to a father, told
him all their griefs and all their fears,
and humbly and earnestly implored his
blessing.

2

t, \ i NY \
‘ie KAY

ANS





CHAPTER VI.
HOPES AND DISAPPOINTMENTS.

TuereE is, perhaps—certainly there
often seems to be—some ground for the
remark that

—— Misfortunes come not single spies,
But in battalions.”

The Rose family, after their sad be-
reavement, had some evidence that there
was quite as much truth as poetry in the



60 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

remark. They were sorely afflicted.
But they made up their minds, at the
outset, that they would do what they
could to obtain an honest, and if possi-
ble a comfortable living; and with them
it was a question of far less importance
whether the labor that fell to their
lot was respectable and genteel, than
whether it was honorable in the sight of
God, and afforded them the comforts of
life.

The plan which was finally adopted
was this: The mother was to take in
plain sewing. She was a good seam-
stress, and there seemed to be no doubt
that she could earn a great deal with her



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 61

needle. The old gentleman, who loved
to work in the garden as well as he loved
to eat, almost, was to raise vegetables
for the New York market. Amy—there
seemed to be nothing quite so definite
marked out for her. She was to assist
in the garden, and to do the best she
could in every other branch of profitable
labor that might turn up. Bessie was to
be the housekeeper.

How easy it is to plan; but how often
the Lord disappoints us, after our plans
are all matured. When the spring came,
the old gentleman set about his garden-
ing in earnest, and Amy helped him in
his task. But before they had reaped



62 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

any of the rewards of their toil, the
broken-hearted old sailor was bidden to
his last account, and a new fountain of
grief was opened in that poor family.

Mrs. Rose did not succeed so well as
she expected with her sewing. ‘True,
she did not find much trouble in getting —
work to do. Her greatest difficulties
were to suit her customers, and to get
pay for her work, after they were suited.
The result of the first trial she made in
her new line of business was not calcu-
lated to encourage her much. Some one
had told her that Mrs. Simpkins had a
great deal of plain sewing to do, and to
Mrs. Simpkins she applied at once.



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL, 65

This lady was the wife of aKetlike a
who had formerly been. eoncemery and
large factory, but who had failés, and
who, since his failure, had been livinger,
great style, without doing any busidoes
in a fine house about three miles e the
the Rose Cottage. . that

My readers will perhaps wonder kins’
it comes to pass that a man fails in lome
ness, ad still lives like a rich man. est
tell you. He does it by cheating lng
creditors. That is the way it is done,
and that is the only way it can be done.
When Mr. Simpkins failed, he owed
thousands of dollars. Among his credi-
tors were poor men, who had to work



62 TR,THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

any of,, he their daily bread. But they
broker got ged Cent from Mrs. Simpkins,
his lagi, sham failure. "@W 2.
StiWhat pleasure should you think™..“rere
M, in living on money obtained in this
she ¢? Would you not rather dine on a
she d: of bread—aye, would you not
worker go without a dinner, than to be
Wer€ged to think, while sitting at your
PaYjle, although it were loaded with lux-
Thies, that you were eating food bought
"with the money you had got by cheating
those whom you owed? [I should, I’m
sure. I don’t see how such men can
eat their splendid dinners with any relish.
I don’t see how they can sleep nights.



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 65

I should think their dishonesty, like a
fiend, would dog them about, ali day and
all night, and stare them in the face, and
keep up such a saucy clamor and clatter,
that they would go crazy. But it does
not seem to be so always. I suppose the
conscience gets so hard and. tough, that
there is no feeling in it. Mr. Simpkins’
conscience—if he had any, which some
of those people who knew him best
doubted—must have been as tough as
a piece of sole leather, and as hard as
cast iron.

Mrs. Simpkins, too, I should judge,
had tried the hardening and toughen-
ing process pretty successfully. So it



66 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

appeared in the matter of the plain
sewing. -

«Amy, my dear,” said Mrs. Rose,
one night, after she had taken the last
stitches in the piece of work which Mrs.
Simpkins, ‘purely out of charity,” as
that lady said, had given her to do,
«« Amy, can you go and carry this work
home to-morrow ?”

‘‘Oh, yes, ma’am,”’ said she, ‘it is |
only a little way. I shall feel all the
better for the walk.”

‘But you will have to carry a basket
on your arm.”

‘© A light one, a very light one, dear
mother.”



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 67

‘«‘ You are so kind and good, Amy, and
so anxious to please your mother, that I’m
afraid you sometimes go beyond your
strength.”

“‘Oh, no, mother,” said Amy, laugh-
ing, ‘I’m as strong as a young elephant,
you know.”

‘‘ Well, you may go to-morrow, if you
please. I hope Mrs. Simpkins will give
you the money for the work. You need
some shoes, Amy, and so does Bessie.”

The next morning Amy, with a heart
unusually light and cheerful, posted off to
the rich bankrupt’s, with the basket of
linen for the lady of the house.

**Is Mrs. Simpkins at home ?” asked



68 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

Amy, when the servant answered her
faint knock at the door.

“T’ll see,” said the servant, shutting
the door in the poor girl’s face, and leav-
ing her standing outside, with the basket
on her arm.

Some minutes elapsed—the time seem-
ed an hour to Amy—before the messen-
ger returned. ‘Mrs. Simpkins is at
home, little hussy,” was his insulting
message. ‘She'll wait on you by and
by. Step round to the back door with
your trumpery. The lady don’t allow
such folks as you are to bolt into the
front door.”

Amy made no reply, but, silently and



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 69

sadly, walked round to the back door.
She wanted to say a word to the man.
If she had mustered courage enough,
after the harsh treatment she had re-
ceived, she would have asked him what
he meant by “such folks as you are.”
Those words puzzled her. She could
not make out their meaning. She tried
to be very brave, and to ask the man,
kindly ; but her courage failed her be-
fore the first word of the question escaped
her lips.

After sitting in the kitchen a long
time, Amy was informed that Mrs. Simp-
kins would see her in the parlor. So to
the parlor she went, basket in hand.



70 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘* You unmannerly thing,” said Mrs.
Simpkins, when the girl presented her-
self. ‘what on earth do you bring that
basket into the parlor for? Don’t you
know any better than that? My pa-
tience, child! was you brought up in the
woods ?”

Amy, who turned as red as the lining
in her cottage bonnet, and who could
hardly keep from crying, started to go
back again with her load, to the kitchen.
But Mrs. Simpkins, in a tone of voice
which the girl thought the opposite of
kind and courteous, to say the least,
called after her, and bade her to come
back. ‘The stupid girl!’ said she,



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 71

‘“‘you might as well stay, now you're
here, I suppose.”” Her voice sounded to
Amy—so she told her fun-loving sister
long after that, when her wound had be-
come healed over—her voice sounded
like the music made by striking a crack-
ed tea-kettle. -

Mrs. Simpkins, after this last speech,
seemed to feel better, and, with some-
thing about as near a smile as she ever
used in her intercourse with ‘such folks
as Amy,”’ proceeded to examine Mrs.
Rose’s work, with the aid of her specta-
cles. She kept muttering something be-
tween her teeth, at intervals, all the time
the long examination lasted. But Amy,



72 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

as she stood, with her eyes fixed on thu
carpet, could catch only here and there a

word. Once she was sure she heard the
old lady say, ‘* What monstrous stitches !”’
and at another time she thought she
heard the words “ perfect botch.”” Those
words did not tend to assure her much,
as you may imagine.

The scrutiny was over at last. The
spectacles were discharged from their
important mission, and the decision was
declared :

‘‘Your mother has sent me a real
shabby piece of work, I must say.”’

ss Will it not answer, ma’am ?” Amy
modestly inquired.



ee
wee. 2m +

Tiare p
ih ee wae
as

ser a
i H ; ‘
! | " 06
k ki SS Sy
i ih
a

on
—-



_—
——_— _
i

oe

44 “WITAT MONSTROUS STITCHES |" 8



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 15

«¢ Answer !”’ exclaimed the lady, ‘‘ why,
it isn’t fit for my servants to wear !””

Amy was very sorry, she said. She
had no doubt but her mother would alter
it so as to suit, if Mrs. Simpkins would
send her word how she wished to have it
done.

‘Ss Mrs. Rose ought to know how to do
her work, if she undertakes to do it. I
can’t tell her how to alter it. I might
as well do it myself, and have done with
it. But it serves me right. I had no
business to give people work, just be-
cause they are poor. People fancy
we’re made of money here, I should
think. I can’t help everybody. ‘It



76 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

would be a charity,’ Mrs. Morton said.
Charity! Suppose it is charity? It’sa
pretty story if I must have my work
spoiled for the sake of charity.”

Amy asked again what instructions she
would send back to her mother about the
work.

*¢ Tell her she can’t suit: me,”’ said Mrs.
Simpkins.

«‘And the work?” inquired Amy, ob-
serving that the lady had folded it up,
and laid it away on the sofa.

‘P}l keep it,’ said Mrs. Simpkins,
rather impatiently.

And she did keep it. She conde-
scended to keep it, and told Amy she



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 7

had no farther use for her mother’s ser
vices.

The poor girl went home with light
pockets and a heavy heart. She felt
wounded by the treatment she had re-
ceived—treatment which any member of
the Rose family would have considered
too harsh and unkind for them to employ
toward a dog—but she had a heavier
burden at her heart than that. It was
the thought of the pain that her mother
would feel, when she learned that she
had entirely failed to please Mrs. Simp-
kins, and that all hope-of obtaining any
money in that quarter was cut off.

She told her mother all that she



78 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

thought it necessary for her to know—
that the work did not suit the lady, and
that she had said she should have no
farther need for her services. It was
not until Mrs. Rose read it in the tears
which stood in her daughter’s eyes, that
she learned how harshly and unfeelingly
the poor girl had been treated. When
Amy told her all, they wept together for
a long time. Then they went to their
heavenly Father with their sorrow, and
were comforted.



CHAPTER VII.
GLIMMERINGS OF SUNSHINE.

Tuenre is a proverb which says, ‘The
darkest time is just before day.” Like
most proverbs in common use, this one
has enough in it to keep it from being
driven out of good society, though possi-
bly not much more. It is a pretty good
crutch to lean upon, however, especially
where a poor fellow cannot get anything
better to lean upon, and is obliged to



80 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

take that or nothing. I don’t know
whether it was quoted in the Rose family
or not, at the period when Amy returned
from the rich bankrupt’s. Very likely
it never came into their minds, and that
they went elsewhere for comfort and
hope. If the truth were known, indeed,
I presume it would appear, that such
words as these, from the pages of Scrip-
ture, were worth more to them, at that
dark and desolate period, than all the
proverbs that ever fell from human lips:
‘Trust in the Lord, and do good; so
shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily
thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself, also,
in the Lord; trust, also, in him; and he



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 81

shall bring it to pass; and he shall bring
forth thy righteousness as the light, and
thy judgment as the noon-day. The
steps of a good man are ordered by the
Lord; and he delighteth in his way.
Though he fall, he shall not be utterly
cast down; for the Lord upholdeth him
with his hand.”

I say very likely the family at Rose
Cottage found something in the Bible a
great deal more consoling to them in
their distress, than the old proverb I have
quoted, and that, possibly, they did not
call for any aid from that quarter. Still,
it must be confessed that the truth of the
old saw was rather confirmed than other-.



82 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

wise in their case. At any rate, it is
certain that the night was pitch dark, at
about the period when Amy brought
home the sad budget of news from Mrs.
Simpkins, and it is equally certain that
some faint signs of daylight made their
appearance in the sky pretty soon after-
ward.

Mrs. Rose concluded, after three or
four unsuccessful attempts, to give up the
plain sewing business, for a time, at least,
and to turn her attention to the little gar-
den. Amy needed help there, it was
clear. She was chief gardener, after the
death of her grandfather.

There was one of the finest strawberry



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 83

beds in that enclosure, that could be
found in all that section of the country.
And how do you think they managed to
make that profitable? Guess.

«¢They hired one man to keep it in
order and to pick the strawberries, and
another to sell them,” some little boy
says.

No, not a bit of it.

‘ says another.

No. Nothing of the kind.

‘¢ How did they manage, then, Uncle
Frank ?”

T’ll tell you. But first let me tell you
why they did not get somebody to do the



84 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

work, or a part of the work, for them.
If they had done so, they would have
been obliged to pay so much for doing
the work, that they would have made
but little money from their strawberries.
They saw that. Amy saw it, as plainly
as her mother did. And so she took the
entire care of the bed herself until the
berries were ripe.

But the time came when it was neces-
sary to contrive some way for selling the
strawberries.

‘‘ Amy, dear,”? said Mrs. Rose, one
day in the early part of June,” how shall
we manage to turn these strawberries
into money ?”



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. (85

«Oh, I conjured up a plan for that,
long ago,” said Amy.

‘Pray, what is it, Amy ?”’ asked Mrs.
Rose. ‘I’ve teased my brains about the
matter for a whole fortnight, and I can’t
hit upon any plan.”

‘‘Well, mother,” said Amy, ‘ please
don’t worry those brains of yours any
more about it. I’ve got a plan which
will work to a charm, I know it will.
You'll say so, when I tell you what it is.
And it isa simple thing, a very simple
thing. You can’t think how little ma-
chinery there is about it. It is one of
the simplest things in the world.”

«But will it work? I’ve known a



86 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

great many of the simplest things in the
world that did well enough in other re-
spects, but they wouldn’t work. Amy,
there is poetry in that head of yours.”

‘¢ Yes, mother—and prose, too.”

‘‘ Not enough of it, I fear—not enough
for every day use.”

«« A great deal more than you suppose,
mother. You did not send me to school
to Mrs. Simpkins for nothing.”

Mrs. Rose’s countenance fell at the
mention of that name—a name she had
tried to forget, and which brought none
but the saddest thoughts with it—and
tears soon found their way down her
cheeks.



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 87

‘sNow, dear mamma,” said Amy,
laughing, and kissing away the tears,
«1’m ashamed of you. I thought you
had done crying over that affair long
ago. I have.”

«¢ But,” said Mrs. Rose, “how can I
help feeling sadly, when I remember
how my dear Amy’s heart was wrung by
that cruel” —

‘‘There, mother,” said Amy, “let us
drop Mrs. Simpkins. I’m almost sorry I
took her up. But, mother, I’m serious
when I say that I never learned a lesson
in my life which I am more thankful for
than the one which Mrs. Simpkins taught
me, while I was trembling there, like a



88 TILE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

scared rabbit, with my eyes running over
the figures in that Brussels carpet.”

‘‘What did you learn, Amy?” ‘“‘Any-
thing about carpet-weaving ?”’

‘©No, ma’am; something better than
that.”

‘© Well, what was it?”

«< That I was a little simpleton.” And
the merry-hearted girl laughed so heartily
that her mother had to laugh too.

Amy went on: “The night after I
came home from that errand, I thought
the matter all over and over; and I
finally said to myself, ‘Well, simple-
ton—for I saw that I was a simpleton—
‘you are as poor asa church mouse. But



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 89

my dear little simple-hearted gosling,
you can’t help that. You didn’t make
yourself poor; and if you had done it,
you couldn’t help it now. Now what is
the use in crying over spilled milk?
The Lord has had a hand in making you
so poor. Suppose you are down pretty
near the foot of the hill, then? It is all
right. It is not very pleasant to be quite
so poor as you are. But you must make
the best of it. God has put you where
you are. You must do as well as you
can now. If you do, perhaps you will
not always be as poor. Perhaps you will.
But see that you do the best you can, at
any rate. of you don’t play your part



90 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

well now, what reason have you to think
you would do so, if you should happen to
rise a little in the world? Till do my
best, and ask God to help me. Mrs.
Simpkins beat all this into my head, and
more too. I hardly know how she did
it. But she did it. I suppose that is the
way she paid for the stitches you took for
her ladyship; and I think she paid a
good price enough, after all, don’t you,
mother ?””

Then followed one of Amy’s heartiest
laughs. She laughed, when she really
set herself about the business, from the
very lightest and merriest corner of her
heart. And this time her mother laugh-



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 91

ed too. ‘But, Amy,” said Mrs. Rose,
‘you haven’t told me about the plan for
changing strawberries into gold ?”

‘*No, ma’am,” Amy replied, “that’s
my secret. I am not quite sure but I
shall get a patent for it, if it works well;
and I don’t intend to make any noise
about it, until the time comes for setting
my machinery agoing.”

And she didn’t say anything about it
until the strawberries began to get ripe
in the garden. One afternoon, she and
Bessie picked several quarts. It was
early for strawberries, and they brought
a very high price in market. But “the
difficulty was to get them to market.



92 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

The city was a long way off—long for
the occupants of the Rose Cottage, who
did not travel much.

«‘Well,”? said: Mrs. Rose in the eve-
ning, “now for the wonderful plan.”

«Wait till to-morrow, mother,”’ said
Amy. “I’m going to try it then, and
we'll see whether it will work or not.”

To-morrow came. Very early in the
morning, Amy called her mother, to see,
as she said, “the starting of the ma-
chine.” Mrs. Rose was not a little sur-
prised, when she got up, to find one of
the, neighbors at the door with a market
wagon; and she was still more surprised
when she found Amy all ready to take a



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 93

seat in the wagon, with her large basket
of strawberries.

It turned out that Amy had made
arrangements with this farmer to take
her with him to the steamboat, and that
she was going to the city to sell the
strawberries.

Mrs. Rose urged scores of objections
to the plan. But Amy had an answer to
them all; and off she started, as soon as
it appeared that the last objection had
been stated, leaving her mother wonder-
ing whether the girl was really in her
right mind or not. ‘She is a crazy-
headed creature,” said that matron,
partly to herself, and partly to Bessie.



94 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

«© A strawberry girl! my Amy a straw-
berry girl! What will folks say? And
what does she know about selling straw-
berries? They'll cheat her eye-teeth
out of her in New York. Well, well,
we shall see. She’s a dear good-hearted
girl, isn’t she, Bessie ?”’

The truth is, Mrs. Rose—on account
of her not having been to school to Mrs.
Simpkins, or for some other reason—was
not by any means so well prepared to
act her part as Amy was to act hers.

The result of the strawberry specula-
tion was even more favorable than Amy
herself, with all the poetry which her
mother gave her credit for, had dreamed



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 95

of. The proceeds of the sale amounted
to upwards of five dollars, over and above
all the expenses. When the strawberry
girl got home that afternoon, and showed
her mother the proceeds of the day’s
sales, the good woman was even more
astonished than she was when she saw
her set out in the morning.

‘‘Doesn’t my plan work well so far,
mother?” asked Amy; ‘and isn’t it
one of the simplest things in the world ?”

Mrs. Rose was obliged to confess that
it did work well so far, and that it was a
very simple thing, too. ‘But, Amy,”
said she, “don’t you think it is rather
beneath you to sell strawberries ?”



96 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘«¢ Beneath me, mother !’? Amy replied,
‘‘why, a few hours ago, you seemed to
think I was beneath that. A sorry figure
you thought I was sure to make selling
strawberries. I was going to get cheat-
ed, you know, and abused in every way.
I was to hhave perils by land and perils
by sea, perils by my own countrymen
and”—

‘No, no, Amy,” Mrs. Rose broke in,
‘you don’t seem to get my meaning,
when I speak of its being beneath you.
Isn’t it beneath you, now, to stand in the
market to sell strawberries, like a market
woman ?”

“I don’t see how,” replied Amy,



THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 97

laughing, ‘‘if I get along as well selling
my berries as the market woman does.”

‘* But, dear Amy,” said her mother,
“‘ should you like to be called a straw-
berry girl?”

‘La, yes,ma’am,” said Amy. ‘Why
not? I rather like the name, now you
mention it. ‘The Strawberry Girl!’ it
sounds well, mamma. There’s poetry in
it, I’m sure. Why, you make me more
and more in love with my new trade.
But has Bessie picked another basketful ?
because I have engaged several quarts
for to-morrow, and I wouldn’t disappoint
my customers for a small gold mine. I
must run out to the strawberry patch



98 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

now.’”” And away she ran, singing an
air almost as merry as that of the birds
who had built their nests so confidingly
in the door yard, and who were now giv-
ing their evening serenade.

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8 THE SERENADERS. 99



CHAPTER VIII.
THAT STRAWBERRY PATCH.

‘* WELL, mother,”’ said Amy, one eve-
ning, after her return from the city, ‘that
strawberry patch is doing wonders, isn’t
it 2”?

Mrs. Rose could not help nodding as-
sent. And, indeed, “that strawberry
patch”? was the theme of wonder all over
the neighborhood. For some reason or
other, it was a most extraordinary bed



102 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

of strawberries. Amy, too, was a good
deal talked of, in connection with the
strawberry affair.

«‘ And what did the people say about
her ?”” you inquire.

Well, some said one thing, and some
another. Some thought, as Mrs. Rose
was inclined to think, at first, that it was
beneath Amy to sell strawberries, like a
market woman.

Mrs. Simpkins, as soon as she heard of
it, went into a kind of horrific fit, hold-
ing up both hands very high, opening her
mouth very wide, and drawing in a very
long breath, the greater portion of which
was expended in exclamations. These



Full Text







a

ae



a




See p. 47

AMY AND HER BROTHER.

THE

STRAWBERRY GIRL;
HOW TO RISE IN THE WORLD.
With Fllustrations.

BY UNCLE FRANK,

AUTHOR oF THE “WILLOW LANE sTORIES,”? EtG.



NEW YORK:
CHARLES SCRIBNER, 145 NASSAU STREET.
1852.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1851, by
CHARLES SCRIBNER,

In the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the United States for
the Southern District ot New York.



C. W. BENEDICT,
Stereotyrer ann Parnven,
201 William at., N. Y.
CONTENTS.

race
INTRODUCTION, . . «» © © «© oe e© @

CASTLE-BUILDING, . . . . . . . 14
THE CASTLE-BUILDERS, . . ° ° e - 19
THE FLOWER OF THE FAMILY, ° . . ° 30
THE FALL OF THE AIR-CASTLES, « e * - 45
HOPES AND DISAPPOINTMENTS, . . . . 59
GLIMMERINGS OF SUNSHINE, . ° ° ° - 7
THAT STRAWBERRY PATCH, . ° ° ° ° 101

A SECRET DISCOVERED, . . . . . e 110
Vi CONTENTS.

AN UNEXPECTED VISITOR, . 7.
CHANGES AT ROSE COTTAGE, . «oe
AMY, AS A GOVERNESS, ° . .
AN UNLOOKED-FOR ANSWER, . * .

4 NUT FOR MRS. SIMPKINS, . . .

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

AMY ROSE AND HER BROTHER, e e
VIGNETTE TITLE-PAGE, . . e .
THE EVENING PRAYER, . . . .

WATCHING FOR THE SHIP, . . .
“WHAT MOXSTROUS sTITCHES!” .
THE SERENADERS, . . . .

THE PROFESSOR AND THE GOVERNESS, .

THE CLASS IN BOTANY, . . . .

PAGE

. 124
° . 137
° 149
. « 162
° 165

Frontispiece
. . 1
. 26
» « 54
. 74
. » 99
. 156
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL

CHAPTER I.
INTRODUCTION.

You will find in this book, little friend,
a tale of every-day life—nothing more
and nothing less. The incidents in it
may some of them be rather remarkable ;
yet I must inform you at the outset, that
they are not generally such as to startle,
and astonish, and bewilder you. I give
8 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

them to you in their native simplicity—
almost in their unpretending homespun
costume.

If you should take a fancy, however,
that the book is dull, because it has to
do, for the most part, with people, and
facts, and scenes, such as we all fre-
quently meet with, you would be some-
what mistaken, I think. If you find the
book dull—and I can’t undertake to pro-
mise you that you will not, though I cer-
tainly hope you will find it quite the re-
verse—its dullness will not be owing to
a want of interest in the persons and
things I talk about. They are interest-
ing enough. You can’t find better tim
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 9

ber from which to frame a story, ora
series of stories, that will entertain and
please everybody, than you can right
around you, in the very neighborhood
where you live. I have often thought,
that the farther one goes away from
home to gather his stories, the more dry
the stories seem to children; and I sup-
pose that is the reason why all the boys
and girls like better to get hold of a book
that was written in their own country,
than one that was written by somebody
on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean.
So that, if you should take a fancy that
my book is a little dull—which, as I said
before, I hope will not be the case—you
10 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

must charge the dullness not to the rank
and condition of the persons I write
about, nor to the commonness of the inci-
dents which are related, but to another
cause, less creditable, perhaps, to the
author.

You cannot read the history of any in-
dividual—no matter whether he is rich
or poor, whether he moves in high cir-
cles or in low circles, whether he drives
his carriage or gets his scanty living by
hard labor with his hands, whether he
has had the benefit of schools and col-
leges or has been obliged to pick up his
education by the wayside—you cannot
carefully read the history of any one,
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. il

without getting some hints from it that
will be useful to you in some way or
other ; and this sketch of the Strawberry
Girl would be a very poor one indeed,
if it did not furnish such-hints. I think
you will discover some as you pass along,
that may prove of service to you.

Let me point out two or three truths
which the history itself seems to bring
out, and which you will do well to note
down in the memorandum book of your
mind. J think you will find here these
valuable lessons, if you don’t discover
any others:

That happiness is not confined to any
station in life.
12 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

That it is not the result of outward cir-
cumstances, so much as of the disposition
of one’s own mind.

That honesty, principle, faithfulness,
industry, virtue, religion, bring with them
their own rewards; and that if one de-
sires to rise in the world, he cannot find
so sure a ladder as one made of such
rounds as these.

That it is a useless waste of time to
fret and find fault with our condition.

That a contented spirit is a gem more
to be coveted than gold or diamonds.

That kindness, and gentleness, and
love, can win their way to almost any
heart.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 13

That it is no disgrace to anybody to be
poor.

That it is both foolish and wicked to
be ashamed of the lot in which God has
placed us.

That wealth does not always secure a
well-cultivated mind; and that the ab-
sence of wealth does not always imply a
want either of education or refinement.
CHAPTER II.
CASTLE-BUILDING.

‘‘Ou, Eddy !’’ said little Bessie Rose,
running into the room where her brother
and sister were playing, ‘father is
coming home next week. How glad I
shall be to see him.”

‘‘Who said so, sister?’ asked Amy,
who was older than Bessie, and not quite
so extravagant in her hopes and expecta-
tions ; ‘* who told you so, dear ?”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 15

*‘ Grandfather told me,”’ said Bessie.

s¢ But how does he know, I wonder ?”

‘¢Oh, I don’t know that. But he said
he was almost sure papa would come
home next week.”

‘‘Is he here now ?”

‘*No, he has gone down to the sea-
shore.”’

How light-hearted children are; and
how easily their bosoms are filled with
hope. Both these girls clapped their
hands, and danced about the room, with
almost as much joy as they would have
felt if their father had actually stepped
into the room where they were. Chil-
dren, who have seen but little of the
16 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

world, and have not often been painfully
disappointed, do not allow their happi-
ness to be marred by doubts and fears,
like those who are older.

‘*T wonder what papa will bring me ?”
said Bessie. ‘A string of coral beads, I
guess.”

«‘ And I guess he will bring me ever
so many shells—all sorts of pretty
shells,”’ said Amy, ‘and some East In-
dia flower seeds.”

«« And a monkey, and a music box, and
a doll that winks with its eyes, like Kate
Merrill’s,”’ little Bessie rattled on, evi-
dently without having heard her sister,
and meaning to join the string containing
THE STRAWEERRY CIRL. 17

the three last mentioned articles to the
one with the coral beads.”

Amy laughed heartily at the expense
of the poor monkey, recommending her
sister to teach him how to dance and
keep time to the tunes played by the
music box.

Edwin—the gentle one, the pet of the
sisters—was not so wild in his notions.
Eddy was a sickly boy. He had been a
delicate child from his birth. There was
always more seriousness about him than
about either of the other children. Be-
sides, he never thought much of his own
happiness. It was enough for hin, if he
could see others happy, and especially
18 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

his sisters. It made him happy, to see
them enjoy themselves. As for him, he
said, he was very rich, and if his father
did not buy anything for him, he should
not feel bad about it.

‘You rich!’ exclaimed both of the
girls, laughing.

‘“« Yes,”’ said Eddy.

‘¢ But how is that?” asked Amy.

_“T’ve got two of the best sisters in the

world,” said Eddy. ‘I’m rich enough.
When papa comes home, I don’t know
but I shall be too rich.”

And so they went on; building castles
in the air.
CHAPTER III.
THE CASTLE-BUILDERS.

I must give you a more definite ac-
count of these three children and their
parents. As you have no doubt guessed,
Mr. Rose, their father, is a sailor. He
followed the sea, for most of the time,
ever since he was twelve years old. It
was a sad day, to be sure, when, for the
first time after his marriage and the birth
of his daughter Amy, he tore himself
20 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

away from his humble dwelling, and
went on board the ship that was to take
him thousands of miles from his native
land. It was a sad day, and the tears
flowed freely down his weather-beaten
cheeks, as he uttered his farewell bless-
ing. But he was brought up to follow
the sea. His father was a sailor. So
were all his brothers. They knew very
little about work on land; and painful as
it was to be so long separated from his
family, he saw no other way of getting a
living than to go to sea.

Matthew Rose was a poor man. But
he managed to support his family com-
fortably. Their wants were not so great
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 21

as those of some families I know of. If
they had expected a thousand dollars a
year, they would have been greatly dis-
appointed. If they had regarded that
sum as necessary to a comfortable living,
they would have had a miserable time of
it. But Mrs. Rose had learned two
valuable arts: that of living within her
means, and that of being tolerably con-
tented with the temporal things that fell
to her share. She wasa Christian. So
was her husband. They were Christians
in the highest sense of the teym. Their,
religion had soul in it. It was some-
thing more than a bundle of dry bones.
They carried their religion into every
22 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

department of life; and they taught its
principles carefully to their children.
The result was that the sailor’s cottage
was always a happy spot. Mr. Rose
himself, though so often and so long
separated from those he loved most
fondly, was a happy man ; for

“ He is the happy man, whose life e’en now
Shows somewhat of the happier life to come.”

Mr. Rose’s cottage was situated within
a mile or two of the sea-shore, in the
State of New Jersey. There was not
much of a village where he lived. Peo-
ple were rather scarce in that region.
To tell the truth, the land in that part of
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 23

the country is not the best in the world.
It is poor enough, to tell the whole truth.
Still, it is a pleasant spot. It is pleasant
to have a fine beach of white sand near
you; to be able to wander for miles
along that beach, picking up shells; to
play with the saucy waves, as they dash
against the shore; to gaze upon the vast
ocean, when it is lashed into foam, and
the surf is high; to listen to the sound
of the waves, always in motion, always
uttering its strange murmurs, even when
its bosom seems at rest.

The government and early training of
the children fell almost entirely to the
lot of the mother ; and she seems to have
24 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

possessed no small share of tact in their
management. As soon as they could
speak, they were taught the language of
prayer and praise. Before they could
speak plain, this well-known hymn was
repeated by each one of them, as they
retired fur the night :

“ Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.”

At the time when the conversation re-
lated in the preceding chapter took place,
there were two children—Amy and Bes-
sie. Eddy—the gentle little Eddy, had
gone to his rest. These children, with


THE EVENING PRAYER,
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 27

the mother and grandfather Rose, com-
prised the whole family, when Mr. Rose
was away at sea. Some of you will
wonder how they got along without any
servant. But they did get along without
any, in some way or another. Mrs. Rose
had a habit of helping herself a good
deal; and the children, at the time I am
speaking of, did not need much helping.
They, too, had learned to help them-
selves.

You will inquire, perhaps, what sort
of education the children had. There
was a school about a mile from Mr.
Rose’s, and the two eldest, Amy and
Bessie, had for some years been accus-
28 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

tomed to walk there and back, during
the time when the school was kept, al-
most every day. And they had been
good scholars, too. There were none in
the school who were more faithful in
their studies than they. There were
none of their age, more frequently at the
head of the spelling class than they were.
None more readily did the hard sums or
answered more correctly the questions
that were put to them out of Morse’s
Geography. I may go farther, and say
that Amy was generally, if not always
reckoned among the very best scholars
in school.

As it is about Amy that my story
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. . 29

principally relates, you will not. think I
slight Bessie, if I have less to do with
her than with her sister; though I do
not mean to neglect her altogether, by
any means.

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CHAPTER IV.
THE FLOWER OF THE FAMILY.

Amy Ross was the flower of the family.
No one could help seeing that. It was
astonishing how readily she learned, and
it was almost equally astonishing, to some
people, where she got hold of sundry rare
morsels of knowledge, not in very com-
mon use in the vicinity of Rose cottage.
The school which she attended, in com-
mon with her sister, was certainly not
TIE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 31

among the best. It was, indeed, only
tolerable. The very commonest branches
merely were all that any of the instruc-
tors attempted to teach; and some of
them made bungling work with even
these branches.

But with all these disadvantages, Amy
managed, first and last, by hook or by
crook, to learn more than many girls
who are sent to the best schools in the
country.

I will give you one specimen of the
way in which she gleaned sheaves of
valuable knowledge, here and _ there.
Botany was not taught at the school
which she attended. It was quite as
32 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

much as those teachers could do to carry
their pupils safely through the somewhat
perilous seas of grammar, geography, and
arithmetic. Well, Amy was exceedingly
fond of flowers. She always wanted to
become acquainted with every flower she
saw. The woods, and swamps, and
meadows, in the vicinity of her home,
abounded with flowers, many of which
were lovely in the extreme. It isa great
mistake, little girl, to suppose that all
the beautiful flowers grow in the gardens,
and have been adopted from some far-
off country. It is a great mistake.
Some of the loveliest flowers I ever saw
in my life—some of the loveliest, I do
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 33

believe, that the sun ever shone upon—
are natives of our northern and middle
states. The hills and vales, the woods
and meadows of New Jersey, the state in
which Amy lived, can boast of flowers as
fair as most of those which grace our gar-
dens and green-houses.

Our young friend, unlike many others
who live in the country, and who have
the same opportunities of becoming ac-
quainted with the beauties of the coun-
try, became, quite early in life, an ad-
mirer of the wild flowers. She loved to
look in their beautiful faces, and got to
be very intimate with them, long before
she knew many of their names, or the
34 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

different families to which they be-
longed.

In the spring of the year, as soon as
the snow left the ground, Amy might
have been seen in the woods, carefully
removing the dry leaves, to see if she
could find the trailing arbutus; and when
she did find it, she was as much delighted,
IT am sure, as if she had discovered a
small mine of gold. Some will wonder
at this. But I do not wonder at all.
The trailing arbutus is one of the love-
liest little creatures that ever grew. It
used to make the blood course a great
deal more swiftly in my veins, in the
days of my boyhood, when, quite as soon
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 35

as the warm sun had taken off the earth’s
white mantle, and sometimes even before
that, I found a cluster of these flowers,
with an almost crimson blush on their
cheeks.

The trailing arbutus, and many of its
companions, Amy was in the habit of in-
troducing from their wild haunts into the
garden, where she contrived to make
them quite at home. Among these
flowers were the wind anemone, sev-
eral species of the violet, the liverleaf,
(not liverwort, as many people call the
plant, confounding it with a very differ-
ent thing growing on the damp stones of
old wells) the spring beauty, the ladies’
36 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

slipper, the adder’s tongue, the twin
flower, the honeysuckle, the cardinal
flower, the arethusa, and a good many
more besides.

One day, during the summer, she was
walking in the pine woods, with her
brother, when she discovered a rare
flower, of great beauty. I don’t know
whether you have ever seen it or not.
Its haunts are dense woods, in rather
sandy soils. It is sometimes called the
grass pink, I believe; though that name
does not distinguish it from a common
exotic flower in the garden. The botani-
cal name of the plant in the Cymbidium
Pulchellum. I have heard Amy say that
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 37

she never had been more delighted with
any discovery in her life than she was
when she first found, each in its native
haunt, the grass pink and the purple
wake robin.

From the discovery of the grass pink
dates a new era in the history of Amy
Rose. She transplanted it to her garden,
and it bloomed there, by the side of the
blue violet and the anemone.

It was not many days after the dis-
covery of that flower, that a stranger,
who happened to be travelling that way,
called at Mr. Rose’s house, to rest him-
self a little while—for it was a very hot

day—and to refresh himself with a glass
3
‘38 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

of water. This gentleman proved to be
a professor in one of the most celebrated
colleges in the country, and was as much
at home in botany as if he had made it
his study for a lifetime. The door lead-
ing to the garden standing open, his at-
tention was at once directed to Amy’s
wild flowers, and he went out to see
them.

“‘ Whose work is this ?’’ he inquired,
with astonishment.

Amy modestly informed him that she
had taken a fancy to the flowers, as she
had seen them in their native haunts,
and so had invited them to come and
live with her. |
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 39

‘¢ But where did you find this flower,
my dear?” he asked, pointing to the
grass pink.

‘‘In the pine woods, yonder,” Amy
said.

‘‘ Are there any more in those woods ?”’

Amy did not know. This one was all
she had found.

‘‘ My dear,”’ said the professor, ‘ will
you walk over to the pine woods with
me, and show me where you found it?”

‘Yes, sir,’ Amy said, ‘‘if my mother
is willing.”

Her mother, being appealed to, was
willing, and Amy and the professor went
off in pursuit of the rare flower. Amy
40 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

readily led the way to the spot where she
discovered her specimen; but it was a
long time before they found another.
They did find one, however, and I think
several, before they left the woods.

The professor told Amy the name of
the flower, and said that, in the part of
the country where he resided, it was not
found at all. On their way to the cot-
tage of Mr. Rose (which J have a good
mind to call the Rose Cottage, though
it was known by no such poetical name
in those days) and after their return, the
kind-hearted man taught Amy a great
deal about her friends, the flowers.

Some girls would have been ashamed to —
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. Al

confess their ignorance about the whole
subject of botany. But Amy did not be-
long to that class. She was always glad
of any opportunity to add to her stock of
knowledge, and she had no desire to have
any one regard her in any other than her
true light. ruth was one of the fea-
tures most strongly marked in her char-
acter. I never knew a person whose
whole soul shone out more clearly and
artlessly in her every-day life.

That conversation with Mr. White—
for that was the name of the professor—
was the foundation of Amy’s knowledge
of botany. When the professor took his
leave, he thanked her politely for her
42 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

kindness in consenting to be his pilot to
the pine woods. And he did more than
that, too. He had not adopted the
notion which some people, strangely
enough, seem to have stumbled upon,
that civility and politeness are thrown
away, when bestowed upon those in the
humbler ranks of life. He expressed
himself as highly pleased to find Amy so
fond of the wild flowers, and hoped she
would be able to become better acquaint-
ed with them. ‘To aid her in extending
this acquaintance, he presented her with
a book on botany, which she afterward
pored over, as if it contained directions
for finding the philosopher’s stone which
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 43

people used foolishly to hunt after in
former times—a stone which it was
thought would change everything it
touched into the purest gold. By the
aid of this bouk, and with the very little
help she obtained, once in a great while,
from a minister who lived some twelve
or fifteen miles from her father’s, she
succeeded in becoming, before she was
eighteen years of age, one of the best
botanists in that section of the state.
Botany became, from the date of her
first interview with the professor, one of
her pleasantest amusements during the
summer months. She spent hours and
hours rambling through all the forests
44 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

and meadows for miles around Rose Cot-
tage, seeking the wild flowers.

I have mentioned only one of the
sheaves of knowledge she gathered as
she went along through the field of early
youth, not because she did not glean
others—for she did—but because the
gleaning of this one had a very close
connection, as you will see, by and by,
with some of the most important inci-
dents in her life.
CHAPTER V.
THE FALL OF THE AIR-CASTLES.

I am getting along too fast with my
story. i must go backa little. You re-
collect the conversation of the children
in Rose Cottage about the expected re-
turn of their father. That was in the
early autumn, I think. What reason
Grandfather Rose had for hoping that
the ship in which his son sailed would
return so soon, I do not know. But I
46 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

know that such was his hope, and I know,
too, that the time came and passed, with-
out any tidings of the arrival of the ship.
She was what is called an East India
ship, that is, she was engaged in trading
with the East Indies. Days, weeks, and
even months passed, and still there were
no tidings of the vessel.

In the meantime, sorrow came into
the little cottage in another form, and no
one of the family felt it so keenly as our
friend. Amy. In all the rambles that
Amy took after flowers—and she took a
great many after the professor’s visit—
she was always accompanied by her
brother Edwin, who loved his sister as he
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 47

did his own soul, and who would do any-
thing to add to her happiness. But the
time came, when that brother and sister
were called to separate until the judg-
ment day. Poor Eddy! MHe had always
a frail, delicate frame. The seeds of
disease early sprang up in his system;
and he faded away, from year to year,
until it became evident that this cherished
flower must perish.

One day, in autumn, Amy and her
brother rambled into the meadow, to see
if they could find the beautiful fringed
gentian, which grew by the side of the
little brook. The meadow was but a
short distance from the cottage. But
48 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

Eddy was tired with the walk, and they
both sat down under the shade of a ven-
erable oak, where they talked for a long
time.

‘‘Dear sister,” said Eddy, do you see
how the leaves on this tree are withering
and falling off?’

‘Yes, dear,” said Amy, ‘and how
beautiful they are when they are ready
to fall.”

‘“‘ They are beautiful,” said Eddy. “I
love the fall of the year. How pretty
the woods are now. I think I never saw
them so fine before.”’

And they were both silent for a while.
Edwin, who had seated himself close to
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 49

his sister, and had twined his slender arm
around her neck, spoke first, and said,

«‘ Amy, dear, what will you do when
Eddy leaves you ?”

‘«‘T hope you will not leave me,” said
Amy.

‘s But I must go,” said Eddy.

«¢ Why must you go?”

‘‘ Because my heavenly Father has
sent for me.”’

‘‘Oh, don’t say so, dear brother. I
cannot bear to hear you talk so. I hope
you will stay with us a long time yet.”

«‘No, no, Amy. I shall die before
these leaves have all fallen from the
trees. I shall never go with you to the
50 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

pine woods again. [ shall die. I know
I am going to die. Don’t cry so. I am
willing to die. I hope my sins are for-
given. I believe I shall go to heaven.”’

Amy could say no more. Something
told her that Edwin was right. That
truth, when it burst upon her, caused her
the heaviest sorrow she had ever felt.

Edwin was right. That was the last
visit he ever made with his sister to the
haunts of the wild flowers. He died in
a few brief weeks, and his gentle spirit
went to the God who gave it.

But to return to the East India ship.
No tidings were heard from her; and, at
length, hope began to give place to anx-
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 51

iety, and anxiety to fear. At length,
everybody, almost, gave up the East
India ship as lost. I say almost every-
body. The wife and father had not
given her up. They hoped against
hope. So did the children. How hard
it is to give up, as utterly lost, those
whom we love. How carefully and
breathlessly we watch over a sick child,
even after the doctor has pronounced
those cruel words, ‘“‘He must die.’
How we notice every change in his coun-
tenance, every variation in the ebbing
tide of life, every symptom of the dis-
ease whith is gradually consuming the
form of our darling child. We see not
52 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

the stealthy approach of the messenger
of death. We hear not the sound of his
footsteps. What brings only despair to
others, brings hope to us. He cannot
die—so it seems to our loving hearts.
My mother died when I was quite
young, and she took my heart with her
to heaven. She was the victim of a
wasting disease, which did its work
slowly and almost imperceptibly. For
months—for years, I might say, per-
haps—her frame, strong at the first, was
steadily yielding to the attack of that de-
ceitful malady. I loved her with all the
strength of my young heart. They told
me, at length, that she must die. But I
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 53

could not credit them. Her death did
not seem possible. She could not die, I
thought. I loved her too well for that.
She could not leave me for her long
home. She could not go away, and
never return again to my embrace.
Even during that long, long night, after
I had kissed those pale lips for the last
time, and had heard the last blessing that
was to fall from them, I could not be-
lieve that she would die, and that we
should see her dear face no more.

So watched, and waited, and hoped,
the Rose family for the ship which con-
tained the object of their fondest love.
Often would the old gentleman, some-
54 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

times with Amy for his companion, but
oftener alone, wend his’ way to the sea-
shore, and sit there for hours, gazing out
into the wide ocean, watching the in-
ward bound vessels that happened to
come near the coast, in the hope, the
vain hope, that one of them would prove
to be the East India ship. But her fair
form was never seen on that coast again.
She was a proud ship, and many a good
sailor had been heard to say that there
was not a safer vessel afloat than the old
N. But she was not a match for
the waves, when the wind had driven
them to madness. Though no tidings
of her ever reached the ears of those who


Wm

+

A. WATCHING FOR. THE SHIP. ¥


THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 57

were most interested in her safety, there
is no doubt that she was dashed to pieces,
and that all on board of her were lost.
The truth, the whole truth, when it
came home to the minds of the humble
family that occupied the Rose Cottage,
struck a terrible blow there. It seemed
to them, for a while, as if all their hopes
were wrecked with the vessel. They
saw, they could not help seeing, that the
loss they had sustained could not easily
be made up. It gave a keener pang to
their grief, when they reflected that they
were left, apparently, with very scanty
means of living. They knew, however,
which way to turn for support. They
58 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

went to God in their distress. They
went to him, as children to a father, told
him all their griefs and all their fears,
and humbly and earnestly implored his
blessing.

2

t, \ i NY \
‘ie KAY

ANS


CHAPTER VI.
HOPES AND DISAPPOINTMENTS.

TuereE is, perhaps—certainly there
often seems to be—some ground for the
remark that

—— Misfortunes come not single spies,
But in battalions.”

The Rose family, after their sad be-
reavement, had some evidence that there
was quite as much truth as poetry in the
60 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

remark. They were sorely afflicted.
But they made up their minds, at the
outset, that they would do what they
could to obtain an honest, and if possi-
ble a comfortable living; and with them
it was a question of far less importance
whether the labor that fell to their
lot was respectable and genteel, than
whether it was honorable in the sight of
God, and afforded them the comforts of
life.

The plan which was finally adopted
was this: The mother was to take in
plain sewing. She was a good seam-
stress, and there seemed to be no doubt
that she could earn a great deal with her
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 61

needle. The old gentleman, who loved
to work in the garden as well as he loved
to eat, almost, was to raise vegetables
for the New York market. Amy—there
seemed to be nothing quite so definite
marked out for her. She was to assist
in the garden, and to do the best she
could in every other branch of profitable
labor that might turn up. Bessie was to
be the housekeeper.

How easy it is to plan; but how often
the Lord disappoints us, after our plans
are all matured. When the spring came,
the old gentleman set about his garden-
ing in earnest, and Amy helped him in
his task. But before they had reaped
62 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

any of the rewards of their toil, the
broken-hearted old sailor was bidden to
his last account, and a new fountain of
grief was opened in that poor family.

Mrs. Rose did not succeed so well as
she expected with her sewing. ‘True,
she did not find much trouble in getting —
work to do. Her greatest difficulties
were to suit her customers, and to get
pay for her work, after they were suited.
The result of the first trial she made in
her new line of business was not calcu-
lated to encourage her much. Some one
had told her that Mrs. Simpkins had a
great deal of plain sewing to do, and to
Mrs. Simpkins she applied at once.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL, 65

This lady was the wife of aKetlike a
who had formerly been. eoncemery and
large factory, but who had failés, and
who, since his failure, had been livinger,
great style, without doing any busidoes
in a fine house about three miles e the
the Rose Cottage. . that

My readers will perhaps wonder kins’
it comes to pass that a man fails in lome
ness, ad still lives like a rich man. est
tell you. He does it by cheating lng
creditors. That is the way it is done,
and that is the only way it can be done.
When Mr. Simpkins failed, he owed
thousands of dollars. Among his credi-
tors were poor men, who had to work
62 TR,THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

any of,, he their daily bread. But they
broker got ged Cent from Mrs. Simpkins,
his lagi, sham failure. "@W 2.
StiWhat pleasure should you think™..“rere
M, in living on money obtained in this
she ¢? Would you not rather dine on a
she d: of bread—aye, would you not
worker go without a dinner, than to be
Wer€ged to think, while sitting at your
PaYjle, although it were loaded with lux-
Thies, that you were eating food bought
"with the money you had got by cheating
those whom you owed? [I should, I’m
sure. I don’t see how such men can
eat their splendid dinners with any relish.
I don’t see how they can sleep nights.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 65

I should think their dishonesty, like a
fiend, would dog them about, ali day and
all night, and stare them in the face, and
keep up such a saucy clamor and clatter,
that they would go crazy. But it does
not seem to be so always. I suppose the
conscience gets so hard and. tough, that
there is no feeling in it. Mr. Simpkins’
conscience—if he had any, which some
of those people who knew him best
doubted—must have been as tough as
a piece of sole leather, and as hard as
cast iron.

Mrs. Simpkins, too, I should judge,
had tried the hardening and toughen-
ing process pretty successfully. So it
66 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

appeared in the matter of the plain
sewing. -

«Amy, my dear,” said Mrs. Rose,
one night, after she had taken the last
stitches in the piece of work which Mrs.
Simpkins, ‘purely out of charity,” as
that lady said, had given her to do,
«« Amy, can you go and carry this work
home to-morrow ?”

‘‘Oh, yes, ma’am,”’ said she, ‘it is |
only a little way. I shall feel all the
better for the walk.”

‘But you will have to carry a basket
on your arm.”

‘© A light one, a very light one, dear
mother.”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 67

‘«‘ You are so kind and good, Amy, and
so anxious to please your mother, that I’m
afraid you sometimes go beyond your
strength.”

“‘Oh, no, mother,” said Amy, laugh-
ing, ‘I’m as strong as a young elephant,
you know.”

‘‘ Well, you may go to-morrow, if you
please. I hope Mrs. Simpkins will give
you the money for the work. You need
some shoes, Amy, and so does Bessie.”

The next morning Amy, with a heart
unusually light and cheerful, posted off to
the rich bankrupt’s, with the basket of
linen for the lady of the house.

**Is Mrs. Simpkins at home ?” asked
68 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

Amy, when the servant answered her
faint knock at the door.

“T’ll see,” said the servant, shutting
the door in the poor girl’s face, and leav-
ing her standing outside, with the basket
on her arm.

Some minutes elapsed—the time seem-
ed an hour to Amy—before the messen-
ger returned. ‘Mrs. Simpkins is at
home, little hussy,” was his insulting
message. ‘She'll wait on you by and
by. Step round to the back door with
your trumpery. The lady don’t allow
such folks as you are to bolt into the
front door.”

Amy made no reply, but, silently and
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 69

sadly, walked round to the back door.
She wanted to say a word to the man.
If she had mustered courage enough,
after the harsh treatment she had re-
ceived, she would have asked him what
he meant by “such folks as you are.”
Those words puzzled her. She could
not make out their meaning. She tried
to be very brave, and to ask the man,
kindly ; but her courage failed her be-
fore the first word of the question escaped
her lips.

After sitting in the kitchen a long
time, Amy was informed that Mrs. Simp-
kins would see her in the parlor. So to
the parlor she went, basket in hand.
70 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘* You unmannerly thing,” said Mrs.
Simpkins, when the girl presented her-
self. ‘what on earth do you bring that
basket into the parlor for? Don’t you
know any better than that? My pa-
tience, child! was you brought up in the
woods ?”

Amy, who turned as red as the lining
in her cottage bonnet, and who could
hardly keep from crying, started to go
back again with her load, to the kitchen.
But Mrs. Simpkins, in a tone of voice
which the girl thought the opposite of
kind and courteous, to say the least,
called after her, and bade her to come
back. ‘The stupid girl!’ said she,
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 71

‘“‘you might as well stay, now you're
here, I suppose.”” Her voice sounded to
Amy—so she told her fun-loving sister
long after that, when her wound had be-
come healed over—her voice sounded
like the music made by striking a crack-
ed tea-kettle. -

Mrs. Simpkins, after this last speech,
seemed to feel better, and, with some-
thing about as near a smile as she ever
used in her intercourse with ‘such folks
as Amy,”’ proceeded to examine Mrs.
Rose’s work, with the aid of her specta-
cles. She kept muttering something be-
tween her teeth, at intervals, all the time
the long examination lasted. But Amy,
72 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

as she stood, with her eyes fixed on thu
carpet, could catch only here and there a

word. Once she was sure she heard the
old lady say, ‘* What monstrous stitches !”’
and at another time she thought she
heard the words “ perfect botch.”” Those
words did not tend to assure her much,
as you may imagine.

The scrutiny was over at last. The
spectacles were discharged from their
important mission, and the decision was
declared :

‘‘Your mother has sent me a real
shabby piece of work, I must say.”’

ss Will it not answer, ma’am ?” Amy
modestly inquired.
ee
wee. 2m +

Tiare p
ih ee wae
as

ser a
i H ; ‘
! | " 06
k ki SS Sy
i ih
a

on
—-



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——_— _
i

oe

44 “WITAT MONSTROUS STITCHES |" 8
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 15

«¢ Answer !”’ exclaimed the lady, ‘‘ why,
it isn’t fit for my servants to wear !””

Amy was very sorry, she said. She
had no doubt but her mother would alter
it so as to suit, if Mrs. Simpkins would
send her word how she wished to have it
done.

‘Ss Mrs. Rose ought to know how to do
her work, if she undertakes to do it. I
can’t tell her how to alter it. I might
as well do it myself, and have done with
it. But it serves me right. I had no
business to give people work, just be-
cause they are poor. People fancy
we’re made of money here, I should
think. I can’t help everybody. ‘It
76 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

would be a charity,’ Mrs. Morton said.
Charity! Suppose it is charity? It’sa
pretty story if I must have my work
spoiled for the sake of charity.”

Amy asked again what instructions she
would send back to her mother about the
work.

*¢ Tell her she can’t suit: me,”’ said Mrs.
Simpkins.

«‘And the work?” inquired Amy, ob-
serving that the lady had folded it up,
and laid it away on the sofa.

‘P}l keep it,’ said Mrs. Simpkins,
rather impatiently.

And she did keep it. She conde-
scended to keep it, and told Amy she
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 7

had no farther use for her mother’s ser
vices.

The poor girl went home with light
pockets and a heavy heart. She felt
wounded by the treatment she had re-
ceived—treatment which any member of
the Rose family would have considered
too harsh and unkind for them to employ
toward a dog—but she had a heavier
burden at her heart than that. It was
the thought of the pain that her mother
would feel, when she learned that she
had entirely failed to please Mrs. Simp-
kins, and that all hope-of obtaining any
money in that quarter was cut off.

She told her mother all that she
78 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

thought it necessary for her to know—
that the work did not suit the lady, and
that she had said she should have no
farther need for her services. It was
not until Mrs. Rose read it in the tears
which stood in her daughter’s eyes, that
she learned how harshly and unfeelingly
the poor girl had been treated. When
Amy told her all, they wept together for
a long time. Then they went to their
heavenly Father with their sorrow, and
were comforted.
CHAPTER VII.
GLIMMERINGS OF SUNSHINE.

Tuenre is a proverb which says, ‘The
darkest time is just before day.” Like
most proverbs in common use, this one
has enough in it to keep it from being
driven out of good society, though possi-
bly not much more. It is a pretty good
crutch to lean upon, however, especially
where a poor fellow cannot get anything
better to lean upon, and is obliged to
80 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

take that or nothing. I don’t know
whether it was quoted in the Rose family
or not, at the period when Amy returned
from the rich bankrupt’s. Very likely
it never came into their minds, and that
they went elsewhere for comfort and
hope. If the truth were known, indeed,
I presume it would appear, that such
words as these, from the pages of Scrip-
ture, were worth more to them, at that
dark and desolate period, than all the
proverbs that ever fell from human lips:
‘Trust in the Lord, and do good; so
shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily
thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself, also,
in the Lord; trust, also, in him; and he
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 81

shall bring it to pass; and he shall bring
forth thy righteousness as the light, and
thy judgment as the noon-day. The
steps of a good man are ordered by the
Lord; and he delighteth in his way.
Though he fall, he shall not be utterly
cast down; for the Lord upholdeth him
with his hand.”

I say very likely the family at Rose
Cottage found something in the Bible a
great deal more consoling to them in
their distress, than the old proverb I have
quoted, and that, possibly, they did not
call for any aid from that quarter. Still,
it must be confessed that the truth of the
old saw was rather confirmed than other-.
82 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

wise in their case. At any rate, it is
certain that the night was pitch dark, at
about the period when Amy brought
home the sad budget of news from Mrs.
Simpkins, and it is equally certain that
some faint signs of daylight made their
appearance in the sky pretty soon after-
ward.

Mrs. Rose concluded, after three or
four unsuccessful attempts, to give up the
plain sewing business, for a time, at least,
and to turn her attention to the little gar-
den. Amy needed help there, it was
clear. She was chief gardener, after the
death of her grandfather.

There was one of the finest strawberry
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 83

beds in that enclosure, that could be
found in all that section of the country.
And how do you think they managed to
make that profitable? Guess.

«¢They hired one man to keep it in
order and to pick the strawberries, and
another to sell them,” some little boy
says.

No, not a bit of it.

‘ says another.

No. Nothing of the kind.

‘¢ How did they manage, then, Uncle
Frank ?”

T’ll tell you. But first let me tell you
why they did not get somebody to do the
84 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

work, or a part of the work, for them.
If they had done so, they would have
been obliged to pay so much for doing
the work, that they would have made
but little money from their strawberries.
They saw that. Amy saw it, as plainly
as her mother did. And so she took the
entire care of the bed herself until the
berries were ripe.

But the time came when it was neces-
sary to contrive some way for selling the
strawberries.

‘‘ Amy, dear,”? said Mrs. Rose, one
day in the early part of June,” how shall
we manage to turn these strawberries
into money ?”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. (85

«Oh, I conjured up a plan for that,
long ago,” said Amy.

‘Pray, what is it, Amy ?”’ asked Mrs.
Rose. ‘I’ve teased my brains about the
matter for a whole fortnight, and I can’t
hit upon any plan.”

‘‘Well, mother,” said Amy, ‘ please
don’t worry those brains of yours any
more about it. I’ve got a plan which
will work to a charm, I know it will.
You'll say so, when I tell you what it is.
And it isa simple thing, a very simple
thing. You can’t think how little ma-
chinery there is about it. It is one of
the simplest things in the world.”

«But will it work? I’ve known a
86 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

great many of the simplest things in the
world that did well enough in other re-
spects, but they wouldn’t work. Amy,
there is poetry in that head of yours.”

‘¢ Yes, mother—and prose, too.”

‘‘ Not enough of it, I fear—not enough
for every day use.”

«« A great deal more than you suppose,
mother. You did not send me to school
to Mrs. Simpkins for nothing.”

Mrs. Rose’s countenance fell at the
mention of that name—a name she had
tried to forget, and which brought none
but the saddest thoughts with it—and
tears soon found their way down her
cheeks.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 87

‘sNow, dear mamma,” said Amy,
laughing, and kissing away the tears,
«1’m ashamed of you. I thought you
had done crying over that affair long
ago. I have.”

«¢ But,” said Mrs. Rose, “how can I
help feeling sadly, when I remember
how my dear Amy’s heart was wrung by
that cruel” —

‘‘There, mother,” said Amy, “let us
drop Mrs. Simpkins. I’m almost sorry I
took her up. But, mother, I’m serious
when I say that I never learned a lesson
in my life which I am more thankful for
than the one which Mrs. Simpkins taught
me, while I was trembling there, like a
88 TILE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

scared rabbit, with my eyes running over
the figures in that Brussels carpet.”

‘‘What did you learn, Amy?” ‘“‘Any-
thing about carpet-weaving ?”’

‘©No, ma’am; something better than
that.”

‘© Well, what was it?”

«< That I was a little simpleton.” And
the merry-hearted girl laughed so heartily
that her mother had to laugh too.

Amy went on: “The night after I
came home from that errand, I thought
the matter all over and over; and I
finally said to myself, ‘Well, simple-
ton—for I saw that I was a simpleton—
‘you are as poor asa church mouse. But
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 89

my dear little simple-hearted gosling,
you can’t help that. You didn’t make
yourself poor; and if you had done it,
you couldn’t help it now. Now what is
the use in crying over spilled milk?
The Lord has had a hand in making you
so poor. Suppose you are down pretty
near the foot of the hill, then? It is all
right. It is not very pleasant to be quite
so poor as you are. But you must make
the best of it. God has put you where
you are. You must do as well as you
can now. If you do, perhaps you will
not always be as poor. Perhaps you will.
But see that you do the best you can, at
any rate. of you don’t play your part
90 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

well now, what reason have you to think
you would do so, if you should happen to
rise a little in the world? Till do my
best, and ask God to help me. Mrs.
Simpkins beat all this into my head, and
more too. I hardly know how she did
it. But she did it. I suppose that is the
way she paid for the stitches you took for
her ladyship; and I think she paid a
good price enough, after all, don’t you,
mother ?””

Then followed one of Amy’s heartiest
laughs. She laughed, when she really
set herself about the business, from the
very lightest and merriest corner of her
heart. And this time her mother laugh-
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 91

ed too. ‘But, Amy,” said Mrs. Rose,
‘you haven’t told me about the plan for
changing strawberries into gold ?”

‘*No, ma’am,” Amy replied, “that’s
my secret. I am not quite sure but I
shall get a patent for it, if it works well;
and I don’t intend to make any noise
about it, until the time comes for setting
my machinery agoing.”

And she didn’t say anything about it
until the strawberries began to get ripe
in the garden. One afternoon, she and
Bessie picked several quarts. It was
early for strawberries, and they brought
a very high price in market. But “the
difficulty was to get them to market.
92 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

The city was a long way off—long for
the occupants of the Rose Cottage, who
did not travel much.

«‘Well,”? said: Mrs. Rose in the eve-
ning, “now for the wonderful plan.”

«Wait till to-morrow, mother,”’ said
Amy. “I’m going to try it then, and
we'll see whether it will work or not.”

To-morrow came. Very early in the
morning, Amy called her mother, to see,
as she said, “the starting of the ma-
chine.” Mrs. Rose was not a little sur-
prised, when she got up, to find one of
the, neighbors at the door with a market
wagon; and she was still more surprised
when she found Amy all ready to take a
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 93

seat in the wagon, with her large basket
of strawberries.

It turned out that Amy had made
arrangements with this farmer to take
her with him to the steamboat, and that
she was going to the city to sell the
strawberries.

Mrs. Rose urged scores of objections
to the plan. But Amy had an answer to
them all; and off she started, as soon as
it appeared that the last objection had
been stated, leaving her mother wonder-
ing whether the girl was really in her
right mind or not. ‘She is a crazy-
headed creature,” said that matron,
partly to herself, and partly to Bessie.
94 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

«© A strawberry girl! my Amy a straw-
berry girl! What will folks say? And
what does she know about selling straw-
berries? They'll cheat her eye-teeth
out of her in New York. Well, well,
we shall see. She’s a dear good-hearted
girl, isn’t she, Bessie ?”’

The truth is, Mrs. Rose—on account
of her not having been to school to Mrs.
Simpkins, or for some other reason—was
not by any means so well prepared to
act her part as Amy was to act hers.

The result of the strawberry specula-
tion was even more favorable than Amy
herself, with all the poetry which her
mother gave her credit for, had dreamed
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 95

of. The proceeds of the sale amounted
to upwards of five dollars, over and above
all the expenses. When the strawberry
girl got home that afternoon, and showed
her mother the proceeds of the day’s
sales, the good woman was even more
astonished than she was when she saw
her set out in the morning.

‘‘Doesn’t my plan work well so far,
mother?” asked Amy; ‘and isn’t it
one of the simplest things in the world ?”

Mrs. Rose was obliged to confess that
it did work well so far, and that it was a
very simple thing, too. ‘But, Amy,”
said she, “don’t you think it is rather
beneath you to sell strawberries ?”
96 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘«¢ Beneath me, mother !’? Amy replied,
‘‘why, a few hours ago, you seemed to
think I was beneath that. A sorry figure
you thought I was sure to make selling
strawberries. I was going to get cheat-
ed, you know, and abused in every way.
I was to hhave perils by land and perils
by sea, perils by my own countrymen
and”—

‘No, no, Amy,” Mrs. Rose broke in,
‘you don’t seem to get my meaning,
when I speak of its being beneath you.
Isn’t it beneath you, now, to stand in the
market to sell strawberries, like a market
woman ?”

“I don’t see how,” replied Amy,
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 97

laughing, ‘‘if I get along as well selling
my berries as the market woman does.”

‘* But, dear Amy,” said her mother,
“‘ should you like to be called a straw-
berry girl?”

‘La, yes,ma’am,” said Amy. ‘Why
not? I rather like the name, now you
mention it. ‘The Strawberry Girl!’ it
sounds well, mamma. There’s poetry in
it, I’m sure. Why, you make me more
and more in love with my new trade.
But has Bessie picked another basketful ?
because I have engaged several quarts
for to-morrow, and I wouldn’t disappoint
my customers for a small gold mine. I
must run out to the strawberry patch
98 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

now.’”” And away she ran, singing an
air almost as merry as that of the birds
who had built their nests so confidingly
in the door yard, and who were now giv-
ing their evening serenade.

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8 THE SERENADERS. 99
CHAPTER VIII.
THAT STRAWBERRY PATCH.

‘* WELL, mother,”’ said Amy, one eve-
ning, after her return from the city, ‘that
strawberry patch is doing wonders, isn’t
it 2”?

Mrs. Rose could not help nodding as-
sent. And, indeed, “that strawberry
patch”? was the theme of wonder all over
the neighborhood. For some reason or
other, it was a most extraordinary bed
102 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

of strawberries. Amy, too, was a good
deal talked of, in connection with the
strawberry affair.

«‘ And what did the people say about
her ?”” you inquire.

Well, some said one thing, and some
another. Some thought, as Mrs. Rose
was inclined to think, at first, that it was
beneath Amy to sell strawberries, like a
market woman.

Mrs. Simpkins, as soon as she heard of
it, went into a kind of horrific fit, hold-
ing up both hands very high, opening her
mouth very wide, and drawing in a very
long breath, the greater portion of which
was expended in exclamations. These
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 103

are some of her exclamations that are
left on record: “Do tell!” ‘Never
heard of such a thing in all my born
days!” «Well, what next!’ «What
a disgrace to her poor, dear mother !”
‘The ungrateful folks !”

And after these and a good many more
such pieces of lava had been thrown from
the crater of that very respectable vol-
cano, she called her grand-daughter
Alice, whom she had adopted and was
bringing up genteelly.

‘‘ Alice, dear,”’ said she, ‘*do you re-
member that poor girl who came here
some time ago, with a basketful of linen
that her mother had spoiled for me ?”
104 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘©What, Amy Ruse, grandmother ?”’
asked Alice.

«¢ Yes, I believe that was her name.”

“Oh, yes, ma’am, I remember all
about her,” said Alice. ‘* How she
hung her head down, because you didn’t
pay her, and how Tartar barked at her,
when she came into the parlor with her
basket. Wasn’t it funny, grandma ?”

‘¢ Well, she has disgraced herself.”

“She! You don’t say so, grandma !”’
what has she done ?”

«Turned strawberry girl !”

«Oh! oh!”

‘Yes, she has been selling strawber-
ries with the market women in New
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 105

York, all summer. That is the good
that charity does. You may treat poor
folks ever so well, and you can’t make
them genteel, Alice. I tried to make
something out of that woman, when I
heard how poor she was. I gave her
work, just to help her—for nothing else
in the world ; and she went right off and
disgraced herself, or she let her daughter
do it, and that is the same thing.”

Iam a little afraid that Mrs. Simp-
kins’ memory was getting poor, as she
got along in life. Iam sure, if that had
not been the case, she must have recol-
lected something which would have
closed her lips, and made her reflect
106 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

that poor folks were not the only ones
in the world that disgraced themselves
and their friends. I should have sup-
posed that the presence of that very girl,
whom she was bringing up respectably
and genteelly, would have suggested
thoughts calculated to make her charit-
able—that very girl, whose mother had
run away from the parental roof, while
she was in her teens, and married a man
against the consent of both her father
and her mother, aye, and died in dis-
grace in less than a year after her mar-
riage, almost breaking the heart of her
mother. But we will let that pass.

‘‘ Alice,”? the old lady added, ‘do
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 107

you ever see that vulgar strawberry
girl ?”

‘«‘' Yes, ma’am,”’ was the reply, ‘‘some-
times I see her at church, you know, and
sometimes I meet her in the streets.”

** Well, said Mrs. Simpkins, ‘listen to
me. Don’t never speak to that girl, as
long as you live. You'll disgrace your-
self, if you do, and you'll disgrace
your dear grandmother, too. Alice, I
wouldn’t have you speak to her for the
world.”

Alice promised that she would not, for
all the world, speak to the vulgar straw-
berry girl, as long as she lived; and
Mrs. Simpkins felt better. I am not
108 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

sure but it would have ‘brought down
her gray hairs with sorrow to the grave,”
if her dear Alice had ever done such a
disgraceful thing as to associate with a
poor girl who had committed the unpar-
donable sin of selling strawberries, like
any market woman. The laws of gen-
tility were very strict in the family of
the rich bankrupt.

But to return to the strawberry patch.
It was astonishing what a quantity of
strawberries it yielded. On counting up
the net proceeds, in the shape of hard
money and bank bills at the close of the
season, they were found to amount to
nearly seventy-five dollars.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 109

‘Well, ‘let those laugh that win,’
Amy,” said Mrs. Rose, when she saw
the money lying in a huge heap on the
table. ‘Let people say what they will,
I’m proud of my daughter.”

‘And do you really think,” was
Amy’s reply, “‘do you really think, now,
that I havea little bit of prose in my
head, mixed up with the poetry ?”

Mrs. Rose recollected what she had
said at the commencement of the straw-
berry season, about the visions that float-
ed in her daughter’s brain; and when
Amy looked up so archly in her face for
an answer, she could not help echoing
the merry laugh of the strawberry girl.
CHAPTER IX.
A SECRET DISCOVERED.

‘‘Derar sister,’ said Bessie, one eve-~
ning in the fall of the year—the same
year that Amy took it into her head to
sell strawberries—‘“‘ dear sister, I don’t
know how it is, but I do think we are all
three of us as happy as anybody in the
world.”

«¢ And why not, Bessie ?”’

‘‘ Why, I didn’t think we were going
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 11]

to be so happy, we were so very poor,
you know.”

‘But we are not so very poor.
Haven’t we enough to eat, and enough
to wear ?””

«s Yes, dear sister.”

«© And haven’t we a comfortable bed
to sleep on at night ?”

«* Yes.”

«¢ And isn’t God kind to us in a great
many ways?”

“‘ Oh, yes.”

‘‘Then we are not so very poor,
surely. But even if we were much
poorer than we are, I believe we could
be happy. I’m sureI could. I'll tell
112 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

you what makes us all so happy. We
try to make the best of what we have
got, and to be content with it.”

‘¢T don’t know about being content
with it. I should like it better, if we
were a good deal richer than we are.”

‘¢ And so should I, perhaps. It cer-
tainly seems pleasant to be rich. It
would be nice, no doubt, to have a fine
house, and fine furniture, and fine horses
and carriages. I should like all those
things. But I think I do not covet them,
and I know I do not spend my time wish-
ing and wishing that I had this and that
fine thing that I cannot get. I don’t
think you do, Bessie, and I don’t think
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 113

mamma does. We are content with
what we have. If it does not please the
Lord to make us rich, we are willing to
be poor. We are well enough off; and
so we are taking our comfort as we go
along. Isn’t it so, Bessie ?”

‘
«< But what, dear sister ?’

“Don’t it make you feel bad, when
you see other girls at church, with such
fine dresses on—so much finer than
ours ?”

‘‘No, indeed. What should I feel
bad about? Because they are so hap-
py? Idon’t care how happy they are,
I’m sure.”
114 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

«¢ No, not because they are so happy ;
but”? —

‘© Well, out with it.”

‘*Because we can’t have such fine
things.”

«‘ Aha! I thought you were coming to
that. No, dear sister, I don’t believe
I have any such feelings now. I used
to have, I know. But I have got rid of
them, I am sure. But do you really
think Jane Mason and Mrs. Simpkins’
Alice, who wear finer dresses, I suppose,
than any other girls who come to our
church, are a whit happier than we
are ?””

‘No, indeed. They are not so
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 115

happy. Jane is never happy, I know.
She’s all the time wishing for something
new.”

‘“‘There it is. Being rich doesn’t
make anybody happy. I have thought,
many and many a time, of what father
once said to me when I was a little
girl—that there was a spring away down
in our bosom, and that if we want to be
happy, all we have to do is to let the
water bubble up. It isso. I’ve found
it so.””

‘But wouldn’t you be happier than
you are, Amy, if you had such fine
dresses ?”’

‘Perhaps so, and perhaps not.”
116 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘¢ You would wear them, if you could
get them, wouldn’t you?”

“Yes, if I was rich enough; but I
shouldn’t expect they would have much
to do with my happiness. The spring
where the happiness comes from lies so
deep, that fine clothes and such things
don’t make much difference with the
water.”

*‘T suppose you are right. I know
you are; fur you see into things easier
than I do. But I can’t quite see the
bottom of your spring.”

“Well, never mind. We are happy.
We know we are happy; and it is not so
much matter where the happiness comes
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 117

from, after all. None of the folks that
bought my strawberries ever asked me
where they grew. They didn’t care a
fig for that. If they were good straw-
berries, that was enough for them.”

At the mention of the strawberries,
another thought popped into Bessie’s
head. Bessie had some pride. And,
by the way, how much at home this
pride makes itself everywhere. You
find it in high places and low places;
among the rich and the poor; in the
bosoms of old people and young people.
I would almost as soon undertake to find
a house that had not got at least one
mouse in it, as to find a heart where
118 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

there are not a few grains, more or less,
of pride. ‘‘ Amy,” said her sister, ‘I
want to say something, but I am afraid it
will make you feel bad.”

‘‘Say it, dear,” said Amy. “T’ll run
the risk of its making me feel bad. Say
it, dear.”

‘“‘ Well,” said Bessie gravely and hesi-
tatingly, ‘‘did you know that ever so
many folks called you a strawberry
girl?”

Amy was seized with such a fit of
laughter, when this question was put so
seriously, that it was a long time before
she could reply that she had ‘suspected
as much.”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 119

‘* But doesn’t it hurt your feelings ?”’
Bessie inquired. .

«* No, nor my pride,” said Amy. “I
am getting to like the thing. Let me
see. If Iam going to be famous—and
it really looks something like it—I might
as well have some title tacked to my
name, and I have a great mind to sign
myself ‘.4my Rose, 8S. G. And how
would that look on a door plate, Bes-
sie—a silver door plate? ‘ Amy Rose,
the Strawberry Girl!’ I tell you there’s
music in it. I like it.”

Strange as it may appear, I have not
the least doubt in the world but Amy did
like it. When she found that a certain
120 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

thing must be, and there was no help for
it, she tried to be content to let it go so,
and if possible, to like it. So she often
succeeded, after she got used to a thing
which, at first, perhaps, was not pleasant,
in really taking quite a fancy to it. She
was determined to enjoy the lot in which
providence placed her, let it be what it
might.

in this particular, Amy was very much
like a merry-hearted and amiable aunt
of her’s—on her mother’s side—her aunt
Amy, from whom she took her name.
This good lady was so remarkable for
her cheerful and contented disposition
that I must go a few steps out of my
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 121

way to tell you a story that is afloat
about her good nature.

Mr. Welborn, her husband, was boast-
ing one day, that he never saw his wife
out of patience or fretful, and said that
he didn’t believe it was in his power to
make her speak a peevish word, if he
should try ever so hard.

‘*T’ll tell you how you can do it,”’ said
one of his neighbors, unless she’s an
angel. ‘Give her nothing but scrawls
to burn for a month.” A scrawl, the
reader will please to take notice, signi-
fies, among farmers, in certain quarters
of the country, a ragged, tangled branch
of a tree. Scrawls are not very much
122 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

admired by housekeepers in general, I
believe.

Well, Mr. Welborn took the hint.
He treated his wife to scrawls for a
whole month. But Aunt Amy said no-
thing about the change. It didn’t dis-
turb her good humor at all. She had
some trouble with them at first. But
she got used to them in a little while,
and learned how to manage them.
Things went on just as usual. But the
cream of the joke was this: One day
when the pile of scrawls was getting
low, and there was no other wood at the
door, Aunt Amy said to her husband,
«My dear, we are almost out of wood ;
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 123

and if it is just as convenient for you, I
wish you would try and get me some
more of those scrawls, they fit around
the tea-kettle so nicely.”

Amy, though possibly she did not ex-
hibit quite so perfect a pattern of a con-
tented and amiable disposition as her
aunt did, was certainly a good deal like
her in this respect. She always looked
on the sunny side of things, when they
had a sunny side; and most things have
one, depend upon it.
CHAPTER X.
AN UNEXPECTED VISITOR.

Wuar a clattering of windows and
doors there was in Rose Cottage one
night during that autumn. How the
wind sighed, as it forced itself through
every crack and crevice about the house.
Clatter, clatter—creak, creak! Was the
wind crazy. Bessie thought so. It isa
dismal sound which those fitful autumnal
gusts make about our dwellings. I never
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 125

could manage to get much melody out
of such music. It always seemed to me,
on the contrary, to be made up of rather
dolorous minor strains.

It is said, however, and with some
truth to be ‘“‘an ill wind indeed, that
blows no good to any one.” I suppose it
is true. I don’t know but those same
winds which made such unpleasant mu-
sic for me, after I had crept into my
solitary bed in the garret of my grand-
father’s venerable mansion, [ am not sure
but they have sung me to sleep many a
time.

Clatter, clatter! creak, creak! scream,
scream! ‘Is the cottage going to tum-
126 THE STRAWBERRY CIRL.

ble down, do you think, mother ?”’ asked
Bessie.

«* No, I guess not,” said Mrs. Rose,
‘‘ but really, if we don’t put some braces
against the door, I am almost afraid it
will be burst open. The wind pounds
on the door like a great beetle.”

Amy got the long, old-fashioned fire
shovel, and went to the outside door, to
brace it, when she made the discovery
that the pounding was not all done by
the wind. Knock, knock! Somebody
was outside, and it was pretty clear by
his knocking that he wanted to come in.
What sort of a visitor was it likely to
be? What could he want? ‘“ Were
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 127

his intents wicked or charitable ?”’ Was
it best to let him in at once, or first to
get an answer to a question very com-
monly put in similar cases, ‘‘ Who’s
there ?”? Amy revolved these queries
in her mind for a moment, but only
for a moment. She was no coward.
Though she never set herself up for a
heroine, or anything of the kind, she was
not easily scared out of her wits.

‘©T will let him in,” she said to her-
self, “‘and see what he wants.” -And
she proceeded to unbolt the door, and
let in the stranger.

««Good evening, Miss, Amy,” said the
stranger.
128 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘© Good evening, sir,” said Amy,
though she did not recognize the voice
of her visitor, and as the wind had
puffed out the candle, at the moment
when the door was opened, she could
not see his face, and for anything she
knew to the contrary, she was addressing
the man in the moon.

‘Walk in,” said the girl.

‘¢So I would,” said the stranger, ‘if I
could find my way. But it is as dark as
a pocket here.”

“T’ll make it lighter,” Amy replied,
as she opened the door into the apart-
ment where the family were sitting.

«And not much lighter, cither,” said
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 129

the good-humored visitor, when the door
was opened.

Sure enough, the little blaze there was
on the hearth—for it was not very cold—
was just sufficient to enable the man to
grope his way into the room.

“You all look very much alike here,”
said he. ‘I think you have a strong
family resemblance.”

«‘ Please to take a seat, sir,” said Mrs.
Rose, pointing to a chair.

The stranger, on account of the dim
light in the room, did not discover the
exact position of the chair, and while feel-
ing his way to it, he stumbled over the old
house dog, who was taking a quiet nap
130 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

after the fatigues of the day, and down
he fell flat on the floor.

‘* Well, I must say,” said he, ‘it’s
rather perilous navigation in these parts.”

‘“‘ There will be a light-house in sight
soon,” said Amy, laughing.

“Very consoling,” said the stranger,
‘*to a man who has run his vessel on to
the reef already, and got wrecked—very
consoling, indeed.”

‘Tt may help him in getting off from
the recf,” was Amy’s reply, “if nothing
more.”

Just at that moment the candle was
re-lighted ; its first faint glimmer reveal-
ed the form of Mr. White, the learned
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 131

and dignified professor, in the act of
picking himself up from the floor.

‘Why, it’s Mr. White!’ -exclaimed
Mrs. Rose, ‘“‘as true as I am here, it is
Mr. White !”’

‘Sure enough!” said Amy, still laugh-
ing—for she had too much humor about
her, not to make herself very merry over
such a joke as this—‘‘ why, Mr. White,
how do you do? Are you hurt any ?”’
Then followed a long peal of laughter,
in which the professor joined quite as
heartily as the rest, saying, in answer to
Amy’s last question, that he was afraid,
by the appearance of things, that the
reef was more hurt than he was.
132 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

After the laughing had subsided, and
the professor had been treated to as good
a supper as the house afforded, and had
taken care of his horse, the whole com-
pany, with the exception of Bessie, who
soon commenced nodding in the chimney
corner at matters and things in general,
found themselves in the best of spirits ;
and they talked together until a very
late hour.

It appeared that the professor had
come within some dozen miles of the
cottage, on business; that a thought had
struck him that he would go over and
see how the young botanist got along,
since he was so near where she lived,
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 133

and that he had rode this distance on
purpose to make the visit.

In the course of the evening, he learn-
ed all that had happened to the family,
since his first acquaintance with them.
He wept over the ravages that death had
made among those whom they loved;
and his honest heart could not repress
some words of praise, while he listened
to Amy’s modest and playful recital of
a few of the incidents connected with her
own individual history.

‘‘T declare,”’ said he, * you are cut
out for a heroine. I had some suspicions
of it when J first met you, and now I’m
sure of it.”
134 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

Amy blushed at this compliment, and .
bit her lips, without saying a word in
reply. The truth is, she was perfectly
astonished. She had not told the pro-
fessor half of the story. Her modesty
had prompted her to omit a great many
incidents which would have embellished
her tale not a little; and she had not
dreamed that she was saying anything
which would call for applause.

‘«‘ But I do wrong,” added the profes-
sor, “to praise you to your face. “T
don’t usually do such a thing; but this
time I couldn’t help it. And so you
quit botany, and took to selling straw-
berries ?”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 135

‘Yes, sir,” said Mrs. Rose, “ and
now all the neighbors, almost, call her
the strawberry girl.”

** And I am charmed with the name,”’
said Amy.

‘* Well, well, Mrs. Rose,” the profes-
sor remarked, again forgetting himself,
after spending some minutes in deep
thought, ‘if I had such a daughter, I
should be proud of her, I fear. Look
here, Amy. Would you—but I will
wait till morning before I ask the ques-
tion. I had better sleep over it, per-
haps.”

And he took his leave for the night,
and went to bed. Whether or not he
136 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

slept over that question, as he proposed
to do, is more than I can tell. I sup-
pose he did, however, from what took

place the next morning.


CHAPTER XI.
CHANGES AT ROSE COTTAGE.

«© Amy,” said the professor, playfully,
after breakfast was over that morning,
“you haven’t told me how much of a
botanist you have got to be ?”’

‘¢Oh, to be sure, sir,” Amy replied.
‘‘Well, there isn’t much to tell. For
some months, you know, I’ve paid all my
attention to one plant. I am pretty well
acquainted with that plant.”
138 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

‘The strawberry family, I suppose,”
said Mr. White—‘“‘ the Fragaria ?”

‘Yes, sir,” was Amy’s reply, ‘the
Fragaria Virginiana.”

But the professor.had some reasons for
thinking that she had made some pro-
gress in botany before she became so
much occupied with the strawberry
plant; and, upon pushing his inquiries
farther, he found out that she had got to
be quite a botanist. He was not a little
astonished, when she showed him the
large collection of plants she had ana-
lyzed and found names for. There were
not less than three or four hundred.

«‘T declare,” Miss Amy, said he, again
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 189

forgetting himself, you are a wonderful
girl.”

Whatever uncertainty there might
have been in the mind of the professor
on the previous evening about the expe-
diency of asking the question which then
only half dropped from his lips, it was all
cleared away, when he got the first peep
into that herbarium, all filled with the
choicest native flowers of that section of
the country. Botany was, of all others,
the pet study of the professor. Nobody
could please him better than to echo
some of his praises of that science, and
to show a disposition of taking hold of it
with something of his own zeal.
140 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

«My young friend,” said he, ‘‘I want
you to go home with me, and live in my
family. Will you go ?”’

Amy was thunderstruck. ‘I don’t
know,”’ she replied, after thinking a mo-
ment. ‘ What could I do for you, if I
should go ?”’

‘‘A thousand things,” said the pro-
fessor, ‘and perhaps I could do some-
thing for you, too. But I will go and
talk with your mother.”

Mrs. Rose was as much astonished as
her daughter was, when the kind-hearted
man let her into his secret. What he
proposed to do was to adopt Amy as
his own daughter.
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 141

‘‘] have no daughter,” said he, feel-
ingly. ‘I had one, but she faded away
in the spring time of her life, and now I
have no daughter. Let her go, Mrs.
Rose. She will be a comfort to me, and
a blessing to my family; and I will try
to be kind to her in return.”

It is unnecessary to relate all the con-
versation that took place in relation to
Mr. White’s project of transplanting this
rose to another soil. Suffice it to say
that the thing was finally determined on.

‘¢ And when will you go?” inquired
the professor.

“© In a few weeks,” was the answer.

‘Why not now?” the professor ask-
142 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

ed—he was an impulsive man, and gen-
erally went for ‘striking while the iron
was hot”—** why not get into my car-
riage, and ride right home with me? If
you don’t like us, I’ll bring you back in
less than three weeks.”

Some objections were raised, but the
professor used them up, one by one, with
his logic ; and it was finally settled that
Amy should go in three days instead of
three weeks.

And at the end of that brief period,
Mr. White, having been absent from the
cottage for a day or two, on some busi-
ness he had to attend to, returned; and
Amy, with the few worldly goods that
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 1438

belonged tg her, and the blessing of her
mother, more valuable to her than silver
or gold, took her seat by the side of the
professor, and set our with him for his
home in the heart of New England.

It may seem strange that, with the
little knowledge of Mr. White which the
Rose family possessed, they should have
reposed such confidence in him. But
it should be recollected that, although
they had themselves seen but little of
him, what they had seen gave them a
very favorable opinion of his character.
Besides, he had a very wide reputation,
and his name was everywhere very well
spoken of. It was not as a scholar
144 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

merely that he was respected, but as a
man and a Christian.

I did not intend to sketch Mr. White’s
character at all—such a sketch not being
necessary to my story of the strawberry
girl—but now that the opportunity is
presented, I can hardly resist the tempt-
ation to give a sort of crayon drawing of
his character.

Mr. White was a plain, blunt, frank,
straight-forward man. He never prac-
tised the slightest deception, and he
never could tolerate any in others.
When a lad, he got the nickname of
«shonest Joe’? from his school-mates,
and to the end of his life, he sometimes
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 145

went by thisname. There was nothing
small about the man. When I say this,
I say or mean to say a great deal in his
praise ; for it is quite a common thing to
find a man who possésses some of the
rarest of virtues, one who is universally
respected and beloved, but who, upon
closer inspection, exhibits, every now
and then, a troop of littlenesses. I de-
clare I feel almost disposed to cross a
person out of my books, if he is ever so
perfect in other respects, when I get my
eye on the small things.

Mr. White had nothing small in his
character. He was a generous man.
His heart—to use the homespun lans«.
146 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

guage of one who frequently made hay
for him in the summer months—was as
large as an ox’s heart. Though he was
quite wealthy, having inherited a very
valuable estate from his father, who was
one of the richest men in the country
where he lived, he never put on any airs
in consequence of his wealth. Instead
of keeping himself aloof from the poor,
and taking pains to make them feel how
much they were below him, and oppress-
ing them, he tried to elevate them, and
to show them that, whatever difference
there might be among men, so far as
silver and gold are concerned, they are
all united in one brotherhood, and owe
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 147

each other mutual sympathy, mutual kind-
ness, mutual confidence. How different,
in this respect were Mr. White and Mr.
Simpkins. The former received the re-
spect and love of the poor—the poor
only despised the rich bankrupt. One
of the finest traits, perhaps, in Mr. White’s
character, was the delicate way he had
of doing a favor. He generally con-
trived—certainly he always aimed—to
make a person upon whom he was con-
ferring a favor feel that he himself was
the party that had received the favor.
From the time that he first proposed to
reccive Amy Rose into his family, until
his death, he represented himself as the
148 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

one who was obliged. And so, when
we come to think of it, so he was; for
‘sit is more blessed to give than to re-
ceive.” I do believe that, as happy as
the project of the professor made Amy,
it made him happier still—so true is it,
that ‘‘he who watereth shall be watered
also himself.”
CHAPTER XII.
AMY, AS A GOVERNESS.

Anry, as you will recollect, was to be
sent back to Rose Cottage again, in three
weeks, if she was not satisfied with her
home at the professor’s. Well, it was
near the expiration of that period, that
Amy sat down to write to her mother,
and to let her know that she had made
up her mind to remain with the profes-
sor. Asher letter gives some facts in
150 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

relation to her new situation, I will copy
it for you.

‘¢ My Dear Mother,’’—so the letter
reads—‘ I am happy, almost too happy,
in my new home. It was hard for me to
part with you. You do not know what
pain it gave me. You wept, too, when
I left you. But dear mother, I am sure
that it will be better for us all that I stay
in this dear family.

«You want to know what I find to do.
Do! I never had so much to do before
in my life. Mother, IT am a governess.
Don’t laugh, now. You laughed enough,
you know, over my whim of selling straw-
l:erries, ‘ like a market woman,’ to last a
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 151

good many years yet. So please to re-
ceive, with becoming gravity, the intelli-
gence that I am no longer ‘Amy, the
strawberry girl,’ but ‘Miss Rose, the
governess.” There are two children in
Mr. White’s family—George, a rattle-
headed fellow of some ten years of age,
and Frederick, who is—somewhat older.
Mrs. White made herself slightly mer:y,
when I was installed in my new office,
asking the professor, with mock serious-
ness, whether it was expected that, in
extreme cases, I should resort to corpo-
real punishment in my discipline.

«« The boys behave very well, so far—
very well indeed. The worst of it is,
152 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

that, as Frederick knows twice as much
as his governess, and his brother thinks
he does—which is practically about the
same thing—I am afraid J shall not be
able to help them much in getting up
the hill of science. But the professor
says he is setting a trap in which he
means to catch the rogues, one of these
days. This trap consists in filling the
little head of the governess so full of
cartridges of knowledge, that these pu-
pils will, by and by, be obliged -to sur-
render, when they are fired off. The
good professor, who never rests, after he
has hit upon a new scheme, until he has
set it agoing, has already begun to give
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 153

me lessons, and has coaxed Frederick to
assist him.

«‘ Mr. White and his wife both call me
their daughter, and I am sure they could
not treat me more kindly if they were
my own parents than they now do. How
shall I ever repay them for the pains
they have taken to make me happy ?”

Amy had got as far as this point in
her letter, and here her pen rested.
There was something else which she
wished to allude to. But she hardly
dared todo it. It made her sad to think
of it, and she feared it would cause a
pang in her mother’s breast, if she touch-
ed upon it, though ever so lightly and
154 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

delicately. It was respecting the lonely
situation of her mother and Bessie. In
Amy’s mind, at first, the idea of leaving
them in this situation was so painful that
she would not have listened seriously to
the professor’s proposal, if Mrs. Rose had
not urged her to accept it; and ever
since she bade adieu to those loved ones,
the thought, once in a while, would
come into her mind, that she ought not
to have left them. A tear stood in her
eye, as she paused in her letter, and
leaned her head upon her hand, to con-
sider what she should write upon this sad
topic, or whether she should close her
ietter without making any allusion to it.
4

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% THE PROFESSOR AND TITE GOVERNESS.

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THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 157

It was during this suspense, that the
professor entered the room where she
was sitting.

‘«¢ Well, my daughter,”’ he said, ‘‘ writ-
ing to your mother, eh? And what are
you telling her? That you don’t like
us very well, and that you think of going
back ?”’

«‘ No, sir,” replied Amy, with more
than her usual feeling, ‘ too grateful”—

ss And all that sort of thing,” broke in
Mr. White. ‘Well, and so you are
going to stay with us?”

‘«‘ If I can make myself useful to your
family,” said Amy, “‘and at least pay
158 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

the interest on your kindness. I could
not consent to stay otherwise.”

“Amy,” said the professor, rather
more than half in earnest, ‘ if you keep
harping on that string all the time, I tell
you what it is, we two quarrel. Make
up your mind to that. But look here.
What shall we do with your mother and
sister ?”’

«‘T don’t know, sir,” Amy replied.
‘¢ If I was only near them”—

‘‘You would do great things. Yes,
no doubt of that. What a good opinion
the strawberry girl has got of herself.
Amy, look here a moment. Can you
keep a secret ?”
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 159

«Yes, sir, I think I can, as well as
most people of my sex.”

“Well, I am going to start a high
school for young ladies—a boarding
school. I have made up my mind that
we need one in this village, and others
are beginning to think so, too; and we
are going to set the masons to digging
the cellar for the boarding-house this
very day.”

‘«¢ But that’s no secret, sir.”

¢ All the better. You will not have
the trouble of keeping it then. Now we
have been looking about for somebody
to take the charge of this house; and
we have finally selected Mrs. Rose.
160 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

What do you think of the selection,
daughter ?”

**T don’t know what to think of it.”

** Will she come ?”

‘‘If she thought she was fit to manage
such a house, I have no doubt but she
would.”

‘s Well, now, just ask her. If she
comes at all, she must be here pretty
soon. Tell her I'll send one of our
neighbors to come on with her and
Bessie.”

And Amy wrote, as the professor de-
sired. How much lighter her heart was,
when she was writing that postscript,
than when she was sitting there, think-
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 161

ing what she should say on that theme,
then so painful to think of.

I am not by any means sure that the
professor did not start that project of the
high school almost on purpose to get
Mrs. Rose situated pleasantly near
Amy—such was his delicate way of
doing a favor. He was always con-
triving some scheme or another of this
fort,
CHAPTER XIII.
AN UNLOOKED-FOR ANSWER.

Tue answer of Mrs. Rose to Amy’s
letter contained a piece of intelligence
which none of the wise heads in the pro-
fessor’s family were looking for. It was
no more or less than this: That that
good woman, though she was very grate-
ful for the offer which was made to her,
found it necessary to decline it. The
reason she gave caused a good deal of
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 163

merriment when it was read. It was,
that another proposition had been made
to her previous to the reception of Amy’s
letter, and that she had accepted of it.
What could that proposition be? and
what could be the nature of the new
duties she had consented to perform?
Amy could not conjecture, neither could
the professor. At last, however, Mrs.
Rose’s letter, after leading the reader
over a very long road, in which he was
left at liberty to make all sorts of sur-
mises, Mrs. Rose’s letter came right out
with the secret. She was going to be
married in less than a month to a farmer
somewhat * well to do in the world,”
164 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

and what was better, ‘‘ one of the very
best men in the whole State of New Jer-
sey’—to use Mrs. Rose’s own words—
who had, it turned out, been all summer
building a house for her.

So the high school scheme, so far as it
related to Amy’s mother, fell through ;
and the professor laughed, and declared
that she had outwitted them hand-
somely—* slipped her bridle” com-
pletely. ‘* Well, well,” he added, “ we
must look out for a matron in some
other quarter.”’
CHAPTER XIV.
A NUT FOR MRS. SIMPKINS.

I must pass rapidly over the incidents
in the history of the strawberry girl for
some three years, or more, after her
adoption into the family of Professor
White.

As the reader is prepared to expect,
she acted her part well in her new situa-
tion. She made herself useful in it. I
am not sure but she was right, when she
166 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

said, some time before the change took
place in her worldly prospects, that ‘if
a person is not faithful in the situation
where Providence has placed him, he will
not be likely to be faithful in a higher
one;”? and, indeed, I am half inclined
to think she would have been equally
near the truth, had she added, that, ‘if
a person is faithful in the situation where
Providence has placed him, be it ever so
humble, he will be pretty sure to be
faithful in a much higher one, should he
reach it.”

One summer, the kind professor urged
his new pupil so hard to direct the
studies of a class of young ladies in
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 167

the science of botany, that, though
rather against her will, she yielded.
Every pleasant day, almost, as long
as the season of flowers lasted, she ac-
companied these ladies in an excursion
to the woods and the meadows; and it
was astonishing how well acquainted
these ladies became with botany, before
the cold weather of autumn set in.

Some girls would have been spoiled
by such a change as took place in Amy’s
situation in life. It would have made
them proud, and vain, and unlovely. It
would have puffed them up, as the air
puffs up a balloon. But it had no such
effect on Amy. Perhaps it did not ren-
168 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

der her any better. Possibly her char-
acter would have been as lovely, if it
had ripened in the air around Rose Cot-
tage, as it was under the influences of
the soil into which she had been trans-
planted. But be that as it may, she be-
came more and more beloved, as time
and education developed her mind. -
More and more beloved. Yes, almost
everybody that knew her, loved her.
And there was one who loved her more
than all the rest. JI do not mean her
mother or her sister, though they loved
her tenderly. I do not mean the pro-
fessor or his wife, though they regarded
and treated her as a daughter. Shall I


8 THE CLASS IN BOTANY. 16.)
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 171

tell you whom I domean? Well, I will.
It is no secret now. I mean Frederick
White, the professor’s eldest son. He
loved her with all the ardor of his young
soul; and she loved him, too.

«¢What!”? Mrs. Simpkins and all that
class of society are ready to exclaim,
‘‘the ungrateful hussy! did she dare to
love him? did she, so much below him
in rank—she, who had once sold straw-
berries, ‘like a market woman,’ prove
false to that dear old man, and lay a
plot to disgrace the whole family ?
What! that poor strawberry girl think
of marrying a young man who had
been accustomed all his lifetime to
172 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

the very best society? Dear me! dear
me !”

I don’t know about all that. But I
know that in less than three years from
the time that Amy Rose became a mem-
ber of the professor’s family, she found
herself deeply in love with the profes-
sor’s son, and that the professor’s son
found himself equally in love with the
strawberry girl. I know, too, that when
Frederick, at last, went to his father,
shaking all over like a poor fellow with
a fit of the ague, as most persons are
charged with doing, in similar circum-
stances, and actually “let the cat out of
the bag,” the professor was so delighted
THE STRAWBERRY GIRL. 173

that he jumped up from the table where he
was writing, overturning an inkstand in
the act, and spilling the contents all over
the letter he was writing ; that he caught
hold of his son’s hand, and exclaimed,
‘«‘ Bless me, Fred, that’s too good to be
true!’ I know, too, that he pinched
Fred’s wrist, until, as the poor boy after-
ward declared, it was black and blue;
and that, when Amy was called in, and
he found out from her own lips, as well
as the maidenly blushes that covered her
face, about how the matter stood in that
quarter, he danced about the room like
a crazy man.

‘¢ But they were not actually married
174 THE STRAWBERRY GIRL.

I hear some miss of the Simpkins school
exclaim.

To be sure they were. Why not?
They were actually married. Just as
the earth was putting on its new spring
robes, the professor’s son led that straw-
berry girl to the altar, and she became
his wife. And would you like to know
what the bride had on? Well, let me
think. As nearly as I can recollect, she
was dressed very much like other brides,
only she wore rather a peculiar wreath
of natural flowers on her head. Reader,
they were strawberry flowers.


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