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The Baldwin Lbrary
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A STRANGE PRESENT.
'--- --- --- -- -- --- -- -- -- ^- -- -- -- --- ---- -- ---- -- ---- -- --***"- ------TV-- ------ -- -- .I -1 ^
A STRANGE PRESENT.
A STRANGE -PRESENT.
Down by the road-side, just out of their own gate, three
lit-tle girls were stand-ing knee deep in the grass, pick-ing
"What a cloud of dust is com-ing down the road," said
Dol-ly. "What can it be. Per-haps it is cows, we had
bet-ter run in.
So they scam-pered in-side the gate and shut it tight,
and _stood look-ing through the bars. Very soon they saw
that it was a flock of sheep that made the dust. There
were hun-dreds, and they trot-ted by with here and there
a lamb a-mong them. Be-hind the drove came a man,
who was shout-ing and hur-ry-ing them on. In his arms
he was car-ry-ing -a lamb. When he saw the lit-tle girls
he came to the gate and said,
"Would you like a pres-ent ?"
"Yes, in-deed," said May.
-"Well," said he, "here is a lamb that is all tired out
by the long jour-ney. If I take it on with me it is sure to
die, but if you nurse it, it will be as well as ev-er in a day
And may we have it for our ve-ry own?" asked
"Yes said the man, "here it is," and he put it inher
arms and hur-ried on af-ter the flock.
Dol-ly laid it down soft-ly on the grass and the three
lit-tle .girls bent o-ver it. But the poor lamb was ve-ry
]L'_ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ p~o lamb wa.s'v-",e .,. --
A STRANGE PRESENT.
ill. It stretched out its head on the cool grass but did
not o-pen its eyes nor give a sign of life.
"The man said that we must nurse it well," said Jan,
who was the small-est of the three. "We must take it to
the house and put it in my crib, and mam-ma must give
it some squills."
"That is the way to nurse ba-bies," said wise Dol-ly,
"but not lambs. I won-der what is the right way!"
"Ar-chie would know," said May.
"So he would," said Dol-ly. May, you and Jan must
stay here by the poor dear and I will hunt up Ar-chie."
So off she set call-ing him at the top of her voice.
No Ar-chie an-swered, how-ev-er, and I doubt if Dol-
ly would have ev-er found him if she had not searched as
as well as called, for hers was a ve-ry soft lit-tle voice.
But at last she thought of the barn. He would be sure
to be there. So she hur-ried thith-er. Frisk, the new
pup-py, tum-bled out of an old hogs-head where he slept
and came pranc-ing af-ter her, won-der-ing why it was
that she did not stop to play with him as us-u-al. But
there was no time to stop for play now. Ar-chie must be
found at once or the poor lamb might die. So she ran on,
and poor Frisk, soon left be-hind, gave up fol-low-ing
her and went back to the hogs-head where he was soon
curled up a-gain fast a-sleep.
All at once, as she turned the cor-ner, she heard the
sound of a flute. "That is he said she a-loud, and she
ran breath-less with haste to him and clasped him by the
A STRANGE PRESENT.
A STRANGE PRESENT.
.\ ~'. .'.
A STRANGE PRESENT.
Why Dol-ly," he said, "whats up ?" You near-ly
made me swal-low my flute."
.But as soon as he heard of the lamb, he laid a-side the
flute and went as fast as he could run to where the poor
"Why," he said as, he felt of its body, "the poor dear
is starved, run May, and get a big bowl from the cook.
I will take the poor beas-tie to the barn, and have Tom
milk the bowl full of nice hot milk from one of the cows."
So he took up the lamb in his arms and car-ried it to
Sthe barn, and May brought the bowl. Tom, the man of
all work, milked it full, and Ar-chie brought it to the lamb
.who be-gan to op-en its eyes as soon as it smelt it. Then
he dipped his fin-ger in and the lamb licked it ea-ger-ly.
Then he held the an-i-mal up and bent his fin-ger in un-
der the milk, and the lamb seized and sL.cked it. It was
Snot quite so nice a way for the lamb'as ta-king it from its
moth-er, but it man-aged to get quite a good meal and
was much be.t-ter for it.
It did not take it long to learn to drink with-out the
help of Ar-chie's fin-ger. It was ve-ry tame as it grew
old-er-and stron-ger and fol-lowed the girls all a-bout.
SThey tied a pink rib-bon on its neck and called it Snow-
YES, there was no doubt a-bout it, Ma-bel was ver-y
home-sick. She sat in the win-dow, watch-ing a fast
dis-ap-pear-ing car-riage as it rolled rap-id-ly out of
sight. In it were her pa-pa and mam-ma, whom she
had just bidden good-by to, and be-side them her broth-
er Will. And here she was at board-ing school. No
won-der that she could not keep back the tears.
It did not help mat-ters at all that Will was go-ing
I I Al a,
to school too; for, though his school was not more than
a mile a-way, she could see him on-ly once a week.
They had al-ways been to-geth-er, morn-ing, noon, and
night ; and a whole week with-out Will seemed as much
as a year to poor Ma-bel. And worst of all, her dear
pa-pa and mam-ma were go-ing a-cross the o-cean in a
great ship, and would not be back for a whole year.
The sky seemed ver-y dark in-deed to the lit-tle girl.
So she sat in the win-dow un-til the car-riage went
out of sight a-round a turn in the road. And now,
while she is wip-ing her eyes, I will tell you how it
was that Mabel had come to board-ing school. Her
old-er broth-er Dick had been at school in Eng-land;
and on-ly the day be-fore there had come a tel-e-gram
.say-ing that he had met with an ac-ci-dent, and brok-en
a leg and an arm. Miss Grey, who kept the school,
was an old friend of Ma-bel's mam-ma, while her pa-pa
had a friend who kept a school for boys. So the chil-
dren's clothes were packed in a great hur-ry, and be-fore
they had hard-ly time to re-al-ize, what had hap-pened
they were at school. 'Their par-ents had kissed them
good-by, and were hur-ry-ing to the sta-tion: there they
would take the cars to New York, and catch the
steam-er, and by night would be out on the o-cean far
By and by Ma-bel wiped a-way her tears. Then she
be-came quite in-ter-est-ed in what she saw in the vil-
There was a wom-an with a ba-by in her arms and a
lit-tle girl by her side, who went in-to the ba-ker's, and
came out with a loaf of bread. Then she saw the
black-smith leave- his forge, and stroll a-cross the street
to chat with a neigh-bor. There were ducks and geese
wad-dl-ing a-bout the street too; and she be-came so
much in-ter-est-ed that her tears all stopped, and once,
a as one duck seized some-thing from an-oth-er and-ran.
a-way with it, she ev-en laughed.
All at once she heard a bell ring loud-ly in the' house
and in a few min-utes she heard a great laugh-ing and
rus-tling, as if a good man-y girls were pass-ing down-
stairs. Then Miss Grey came in.
' ^ .- '
"Well, my dear," she said, "din-ner is read-y."
So, tak-ing Ma-bel's hand, she led her down-stairs..
Such a num-ber of girls as there were! Mabel thought
she had nev-er seen so man-y in all her life.. They all
looked at her, and one or two. smiled and nod-ded.
She was sure she should like them.
Af-ter din-ner was o-ver, Miss Grey took her up-stairs,
where a nice pleas-ant look-ing girl was prac-tis-ing on
the pi-an-o. "Sal-ly," she said, "this is Ma-bel, who is
to be your room-mate. You may have a hol-i-day this
af-ter-noon, so as to show her all a-bout the school."
Sal-ly jumped off her stool at once, and ran and
kissed Ma-bel. "I am so glad you' have-come," she
said. I have want-ed some one to share my room
:*'; -: ''*
with me. We shall have ev-er such good times, I
Then Sal-ly pro-posed that they should go up and
see the room, and the two set out with their arms
a-round one an-oth-er. Ma-bel found that her trunk
had been un-packed, and her clothes put a-way in. a
bu-reau that was to be all her own. The room was a
ver-y pret-ty one. There was a big win-dow; and out-
side of it were the branch-es of a huge elm-tree, that
broke up.the sun-shine so that it danced in lit-tle bright
spots all o-ver the floor. Each of the girls had a bed
of her own. Ma-bel was ver-y much pleased.
Then Sal-ly pro-posed that they should go down in-to
the gar-den and play. They found quite a num-ber of
the oth-er girls there; and Ma-bel made friends very fast,
so that her first af-ter-noon was a ver-y pleas-ant one.
It was pret-ty bad when bed-time came, and she missed
her own mam-ma sore-ly; but she was tired, and soon
Ma-bel soon grew ver-y fond of her school. Will
came ev-er-y Sat-ur-day to spend half a day with her,
and let-ters came ver-y of-ten from a-cross the o-cean.
Dick was get-ting bet-ter fast, and the let-ters be-gan to
speak of home com-ing.
Mean-time win-ter had come. The snow lay deep on
the ground. One Sat-ur-day af-ter-noon Will had come
to spend with Ma-bel. Two or three of his fel-lows who
had sis-ters at school with her had come too. They had
di-vid-ed the girls in-to two par-ties, and had be-gun a
i b- ---- .-------- .--.----
snow-ball match. The girls could not fire ver-y straight,
and the boys did not like to: so there was not much
hit-ting done, but they were all hav-ing a glo-ri-ous time.
Ma-bel had just made a fa-mous ball, and was a-bout
to throw it, when she chanced to look up at the house.
She saw some one in the win-dow that made her drop
her ball, and run to the house with all her might. It
was her own mam-ma, and be-hind her her pa-pa. back
home safe-ly from a-cross the sea.
THE LIT-TLE SHA V-ER. ,
THE LIT-TLE SHAV-ER.
IT ;was a lit-tle shav-er,
And a-fish-ing he would go,
With a crook-ed old pin for his hook,
And worms for bait al-so.
Quoth he, No school for me to-day:
Let lag-gards learn to spell.
The sky's a tri-fle o-ver-cast,
The fish will bite right well."
Up-on his hook so ti-ny,
He put a wrig-gling worm:
The lit-tle fish-es rushed to eat
Soon as they saw it squirm.
Laugh-ing he quick-ly land-ed them:
"Ah, ha! a-ha!" quoth he;
"You ought to know bet-ter than bite the hook
Of a fish-er-man like me."
THE LIT-TLE SHA-VER.
With his pail-ful home he start-ed:
But pride must have a fall;
The bot-tom dropped out ere half-way there,
And he lost them one and all
His up-per lip be-gan to quake,
A tear came in his eye;
But when his moth-er kissed the tears,
"Who .cares?'" quoth he. "Not I."
HERE we see a par-ty of lads and lass-es who have
been in the fields to gath-er flow-ers. What a good
time they are hav-ing! and see what bas-kets full of
flow-ers they have picked! What can they be go-ing
to do with them .all?
Here are three lit-tle cooks. They are go-ing to make
soup in that big brass ket-tle of mam-ma's.
Here are three lit-tie sail-ors, but if they are not care-.ful
two of them will lose their boat.
TEIGN-MOUTH was a fish-ing vil-lage. In the win-ter
it was lone-ly as could be, but in the sum-mer there
were more chil-dren there than in an-y town of its size
in the coun-try. They came from all a-bout. There
were ti-ny tots, who dug in the sand with wood-en
shov-els, and made .forts which the tide soon swept
down; and there were lar-ger girls, who roamed a-mong
the fish-er-men's hou-ses and made friends with the men,
who would of-ten stop from their work to have a lit-tle
chat. They were ver-y kind, these men, and very hand-y.
Lit-tle Pol-ly Ward's doll fell into the sea one day; and
all the paint came off her cheeks, and she was a sad
spec-ta-cle. Pol-ly was heart-bro-ken, and was go-ing
home, car-ry-ing the poor doll in her arms.
"Why, what is the mat-ter, my lit-tle maid?" she
heard a gruff voice say close at hand.
Pol-ly could not speak: she on-ly held out the poor
Let me look at her," said the man who had spoken.
"I am quite a doc-tor. Per-haps I can bring back the
col-or to her cheeks."
Pol-ly sat down, and her tears dried ver-y fast as she
saw her new friend take up his paint-brush and set to
work. In a few min-utes the poor doll looked bet-ter
than be-fore she was wet; and her lit-tle mis-tress was
as hap-py as she had been sad.
Yes, all the chil-dren liked Teign-mouth, but I think
the boys had the best time of an-y. Out on the bay
the sail-ing was splen-did; and if a storm came up, old
Ben, who al-ways went with them, made haste to hur-ry
home. He was ver-y cau-tious, so that their par-ents
al-ways felt that they were safe when he was with
them. He was ver-y large- and strong, and al-ways
wore a jer-sey, and a great pair of boots that came
near-ly up to his.waist. In these he would jump o-ver-
board when the boat was just mak-ing land, and guide
it as the waves threw it up on the beach.
He was a fa-mous fish-er-man too. He al-ways knew
when the fish were hun-gry. In the lock-er of his boat
he had a quan-ti-ty of strong lines and trol-ling hooks
such as the blue-fish like to take, as man-y a blue-fish
knew to his cost. The boys could al-ways use his lines;
and old Ben was a great fa-vor-ite, as you may fancy
One morn-ing they went down to Ben's house to see
if- he could take them sail-ing. The door stood wide
o-pen, and they stopped there with sur-prise. There on
the floor on her knees was lit-tle Peg, with a big bowl
of por-ridge, while a black cat and a big dog stood
by as if they thought it no more than fair that they
should have a share.
The boys be-gan to laugh, and Peg.-hear-ing them
turned a-round. She told them that they would find
her fa-ther at the black-smith shop, where he had gone
to have one of the chains of the boat mend-ed.
They all ran off at that, and soon were a-float, and
fly-ing through the blue wa-ter.
Spin us a yarn, Ben," said one. Tell us how you
found lit-tle Peg." The boys had heard the sto-ry be-
fore, but they nev-er tired of it.
"Well," said the old man, "it was just at sun-set
two years a-go this Au-gust. I was com-ing in the bay,
for- I had been out in the Sound. I had had a hard
day's fish-ing, and was think-ing how nice it would be
to be home a-gain, when my, dog Leo jumped up from
the bot-tom of the boat, put his -head o-ver the side,
and be-gan to bark as hard as he could. I took no
heed of him, when all at once o-ver he went, souse.
Then I saw him swim-ming to some pie-ces of float-ing
wood, and put the boat's head a-bout, He got to them
first; and when I came a-long-side, he was stand-ing
o-ver a ba-by. It was on the top of a sloop's cabin,
and we nev-er could find an-y thing a-bout where it
came from. The ba-by was pret-ty far gone by the
time I got home; but my wife nursed her up, and she
is a pret-ty like-ly child, is lit-tie Peg now, I think.
"And I reck-on she was a-bout the big-gest and the
best fish I ev-er caught," said the old man.
THE FALL FROM THE APPLE-TREE.
THE FALL FROM THE APPLE-TREE.
HAL was up in the ap-ple-tree. There was one great
ro-sy fel-low that he was bent on hav-ing. "Take care,"
cried Will, the limb will break if you go too far." Break
it did with a quick snap, and Hal fell to the ground and
lay there for a time quite still. Will bent o-ver him, fear-
ing that he was dead, but all at once he rose up as well
as ever. I have the ap-ple, any way," he said, and he
-took abig bite out of it.
THE RESCUED KITTEN.
THE RESCUED KITTEN.
Two bad boys stood on the
lit-tle bridge that crossed Mill.
Creek, and one of them had in
his hands a black kit-ten.
"Where did you find her?"
"She was just pok-ing her nose
un-der a gate in the vil-lage, when
I snatched her up," said the
"What are you go-ing to
do with her ?"
"Oh! throw her in the
brook: she's noth-ing but
wick-ed boy!" cried
S "Ma-bel, who
up, all out of
breath. It is
my own dar-ling
pus-sy. Give her
poor pus-sy in-to
the wa-ter, as the
THE RESCUED KITTEN.
bad boy, not heed-ing what Ma-bel said, threw her
The kit-ten sput-tered a-bout, but the cur-rent car-ried
-her on. Ma-bel- ran a-long the bank to a point of land
that pushed out in-to the stream. In she dashed; and
just as pus-sy was swept by, she grasped her. But
there was a deep hole in the brook just there; and,
be-fore she knew it, she was o-ver her depth. The
wa-ter closed o-ver her head; and this might have been
the end of poor Ma-bel, if it had not been for a man
who was pass-ing, who dashed in, and dragged her
She was ver-y wet and drag-gled, but she had saved
pus-sy. She was hur-ried home at once by a wo-man
who had come to the scene.
"How did you get in?" said the man kind-ly.
"The boys threw in my kit-ty, and I went af-ter
her," said Ma-bel.
"Which boy threw her in?" asked the man.
Ma-bel point-ed him out.
"' John, come here," said the man. He was John's
fath-er, and you may be sure he was ver-y much
a-shamed of his son. He took him by the hand, and
led him in-to the house. What hap-pened there I do
not know; but, I do know. that John nev-er want-ed 'to
throw a cat in-to the brook a-gain in all his life.
Ma-bel's mam-ma came hur-ry-ing to meet her; and
she was put to bed in no time, and some cam-phor
Sand wa-ter giv-en her, that she should not take cold.
THE RESCUED KITTEN.
Kit-ty was put down by the fire, and she soon be-gan
to lick her-self dry. And in the af-ter-noon, when
Ma-bel was al-lowed to get up and sit in her big chair,
wrapped up in a shawl, pus-sy was so well that she
would not stay in the bas-ket, but scram-bled out, and
played a-bout the floor.
She grew up to be quite a fa-mous cat, and had
kit-tens of her own; but as long as she lived pus-sy
would not go down to the creek. If an-y one tried to
car-ry her, she would jump out of their arms, and scam-
per back as hard as she could go. She had no fan-cy
to try an-oth-er swim.
POOR old Meg has had a sore mis-for-tune. She
went in-to the barn to hunt for a rat, and some one
with-out know-ing it shut the door. She was kept there
all night; and, when she was let out in the morn-ing,
her pup-pies were dead.
Tom her mas-ter did all he could to con-sole her.
He brought her a big bowl of milk, and then some meat;
but she would not touch ei-ther. She looked at him, and
wagged her tail mourn-ful-ly, and licked his hand; but
then she raised her head, and be-gan to howl a-gain.
That af-ternoon Tom bur-ied the dead pup-pies in one
grave, and at its head he put up a board to mark the spot.
Oh! Kit-ty, ba-by! come and see!
See what San-ta Claus brought to me!
Look at my stock-ing, how fat 'tis grown,
And ev-er-y-thing in it is all my own.
Oh! Kit-ty, ba-by! in the night,
When you were a-sleep with your eyes shut tight,
He drove his sleigh down the chim-ney black,
SAnd how do you 'spose he ev-er got back ?
Oh! Kit-ty, ba-by! hold your hand!
Of all the dar-lings in all the land
You are my sweet-heart, "tried and true,
And all I have, I'll di-vide with you.
LIT-TLE MAY stood for a long time watch-ing her
sis-ter, un-til Al-ice looked up with a smile, and said,--
"What. makes you look so sad, lit-tle May?"
"Oh, be-cause I want so much to be big! How did
you get -to be so big, Al-ice ?"
"It is much ni-cer to be lit-tie," said Al-ice, laugh-ing..
"Oh, no! it is not," said May, shak-ing her gold-en
curls. It is dread-ful to be lit-tle; for, when you are
lit-tle, you can do noth-ing. I say to pa-pa, 'If you
please, pa-pa, will you take me -with you on your sail-
boat to-day ?' And pa-pa says, 'No. The wind is too
strong. You can-not go, for you are too lit-tie.' And
I say to .mam-ma, 'If you please, mam-ma, may I go
with you to walk ?' And. mam-ma says, 'No. You
can-not go. I am go-ing for a long walk, and it
would tire you. You are too lit-tle.' And I say to
grand-mam-ma, 'May I go to drive with you, if you
please, grand-mam-ma ?' And she says,' I am go-ing
to take a long drive. You can-not go. You are too
lit-tle.' And if I should say to you, Alice, if you
please, may I paint on your pic-ture?' you would say,
'No. You are too lit-tie.' And I do not know how
to grow big, for naps are of no use."
But I will not say, 'No,' said her sis-ter. "You
shall come and sit on. my knee, and paint the cush-ion
that Pus-sy is ly-ing on in my pic-ture; and if you
take your naps, and 'eat your por-ridge, like a good girl,
you will wake up some morn-ing, and find that you
are as big as I am."
This com-fort-ed lit-tle May ver-y much; and she sat
on her kind sis-ter's lap, and paint-ed a love-ly blue
cush-ion, and for-got all her grief at be-ing such a lit-tle